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Sample records for intact amphibian skeletal

  1. Amphibians.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Naturescope, 1987

    1987-01-01

    Describes some of the characteristics of amphibians. Contains teaching activities ranging from a "frog sing-along" to lessons on amphibian adaptations, and night hikes to identify frog calls. Includes reproducible handouts to be used with the activities, and a quiz. (TW)

  2. Amphibians.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Naturescope, 1987

    1987-01-01

    Describes some of the characteristics of amphibians. Contains teaching activities ranging from a "frog sing-along" to lessons on amphibian adaptations, and night hikes to identify frog calls. Includes reproducible handouts to be used with the activities, and a quiz. (TW)

  3. Amphibians

    Treesearch

    Harold E. Basey; David A. Sinclear

    1980-01-01

    This chapter offers the most recent information available on the habitat relations of teh 26 speicies of amphibians and 27 species of reptiles know to occur in the west slope of the Sierra Nevada. nomenclature used follows that in the most recent literature for each species. the species are arrange in phylogenetic order and numbered in sequence, with prefix "A...

  4. Structure and transmembrane nature of the acetylcholine receptor in amphibian skeletal muscle as revealed by cross-reacting monoclonal antibodies

    PubMed Central

    1984-01-01

    A collection of 126 monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) made against acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) from the electric organs of Torpedo californica or Electrophorus electricus was tested for cross-reactivity with AChRs in cryostat sections of skeletal muscle from Rana pipiens and Xenopus laevis by indirect immunofluorescence. 49 mAbs (39%) cross- reacted with AChRs from Rana, and 25 mAbs (20%) cross-reacted with AChRs from Xenopus. mAbs specific for each of the four subunits of electric organ AChR (alpha, beta, gamma, delta) cross-reacted with AChRs from each amphibian species. mAbs cross-reacting with Xenopus AChRs were, with one exception, a subset of the mAbs cross-reacting with Rana AChRs. The major difference detected between the two species was in binding by mAbs specific for the main immunogenic region (MIR) of the alpha-subunit. Whereas 22 of 33 anti-MIR mAbs tested cross- reacted with Rana AChRs, only one of these mAbs cross-reacted with Xenopus AChRs. Some (32) of the cross-reacting mAbs were tested for binding to AChRs in intact muscle. 21 of these mAbs bound to AChRs only when membranes were made permeable with saponin. Electron microscopy using immunoperoxidase or colloidal gold techniques revealed that these mAbs recognize cytoplasmic determinants and that mAbs that do not require saponin in order to bind AChRs in intact muscle recognize extracellular determinants. These results suggest that AChRs in skeletal muscle of Rana and Xenopus are composed of subunits corresponding to the alpha-, beta-, gamma-, and delta-subunits of AChRs from fish electric organs. The subunit specificity of mAbs whose binding was examined by electron microscopy suggests that parts of each subunit (alpha, beta, gamma, delta) are exposed on the cytoplasmic surface and that, as in AChRs from fish electric organs and mammalian muscle, the MIR on alpha-subunits of Rana AChRs is exposed on the extracellular surface. PMID:6363425

  5. Probing electrical tuning of hair cells with a Zap current method in the intact amphibian papilla of bullfrogs.

    PubMed

    Frolov, Daniil; Li, Geng-Lin

    2017-02-01

    Most, if not all, modern vertebrate species have evolved exquisite inner ears to discriminate acoustic signals of different frequencies, through a process called frequency tuning. For non-mammalian species, at least part of frequency tuning has been attributed to intrinsic electrical properties of hair cells, i.e. electrical tuning. Since it was first discovered, the traditional method to assess electrical tuning has been to inject step current into hair cells and examine dampened membrane voltage oscillation. However, this method is not applicable for hair cells that do not oscillate. In this study, we developed a Zap current method that can be unbiasedly applied to all hair cells regardless of their oscillating behavior. Similar to a chirp sound in acoustic stimulation, a Zap current is a sinusoidal current with the frequency increased linearly with time. We first validated this new method with the traditional step current method on hair cells with dampened membrane voltage oscillation, and then applied it to all hair cells in the intact amphibian papilla of bullfrogs. We found that while hair cells with dampened membrane voltage oscillation are sharply tuned, non-oscillating hair cells are broadly tuned. In addition, we found a third type of hair cells, which oscillate continuously and are extremely sharply tuned, with multiple peaks that are reminiscent of harmonics in the mammalian cochlea. In conclusion, the new Zap current method provides an unbiased way to assess electrical tuning, and it reveals an underappreciated heterogeneity of electrical tuning in the bullfrog amphibian papilla. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  6. Generation of tension by skinned fibers and intact skeletal muscles from desmin-deficient mice.

    PubMed

    Wieneke, S; Stehle, R; Li, Z; Jockusch, H

    2000-11-19

    We have investigated the physiological role of desmin in skeletal muscle by measuring isometric tension generated in skinned fibres and intact skeletal muscles from desmin knock-out (DES-KO) mice. About 80% of skinned single extensor digitorum longus (EDL) fibres from adult DES-KO mice generated tensions close to that of wild-type (WT) controls. Weights and maximum tensions of intact EDL but not of soleus (SOL) muscles were lowered in DES-KO mice. Repeated contractions with stretch did not affect subsequent isometric tension in EDL muscles of DES-KO mice. Tension during high frequency fatigue (HFF) declined faster and this deficiency was compensated in DES-KO EDL muscles by 5 mM caffeine which had no influence on HFF in WT EDL. Furthermore, caffeine evoked twitch potentiation was higher in DES-KO than in WT muscles. We conclude that desmin is not essential for acute tensile strength but rather for optimal activation of intact myofibres during E-C coupling. Copyright 2000 Academic Press.

  7. Ca2+ release from the sarcoplasmic reticulum compared in amphibian and mammalian skeletal muscle

    PubMed Central

    1996-01-01

    Puzzled by recent reports of differences in specific ligand binding to muscle Ca2+ channels, we quantitatively compared the flux of Ca2+ release from the sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) in skeletal muscle fibers of an amphibian (frog) and a mammal (rat), voltage clamped in a double Vaseline gap chamber. The determinations of release flux were carried out by the "removal" method and by measuring the rate of Ca2+ binding to dyes in large excess over other Ca2+ buffers. To have a more meaningful comparison, the effects of stretching the fibers, of rapid changes in temperature, and of changes in the Ca2+ content of the SR were studied in both species. In both frogs and rats, the release flux had an early peak followed by fast relaxation to a lower sustained release. The peak and steady values of release flux, Rp and Rs, were influenced little by stretching. Rp in frogs was 31 mM/s (SEM = 4, n = 24) and in rats 7 +/- 2 mM/s (n = 12). Rs was 9 +/- 1 and 3 +/- 0.7 mM/s in frogs and rats, respectively. Transverse (T) tubule area, estimated from capacitance measurements and normalized to fiber volume, was greater in rats (0.61 +/- 0.04 microns-1) than in frogs (0.48 +/- 0.04 micron-1), as expected from the greater density of T tubuli. Total Ca in the SR was estimated as 3.4 +/- 0.6 and 1.9 +/- 0.3 mmol/liter myoplasmic water in frogs and rats. With the above figures, the steady release flux per unit area of T tubule was found to be fourfold greater in the frog, and the steady permeability of the junctional SR was about threefold greater. The ratio Rp/Rs was approximately 2 in rats at all voltages, whereas it was greater and steeply voltage dependent in frogs, going through a maximum of 6 at -40 mV, then decaying to approximately 3.5 at high voltage. Both Rp and Rs depended strongly on the temperature, but their ratio, and its voltage dependence, did not. Assuming that the peak of Ca2+ release is contributed by release channels not in contact with voltage sensors, or not under

  8. The effect of extracellular tonicity on the anatomy of triad complexes in amphibian skeletal muscle.

    PubMed

    Martin, Claire A; Petousi, Nayia; Chawla, Sangeeta; Hockaday, Austin R; Burgess, Antony J; Fraser, James A; Huang, Christopher L H; Skepper, Jeremy N

    2003-01-01

    Ultrastructural features of tubular-sarcoplasmic (T-SR) triad junctions and measures of cell volume following graded increases of extracellular tonicity were compared under physiological conditions recently shown to produce spontaneous release of intracellularly stored Ca2+ in fully polarized amphibian skeletal muscle fibres. The fibres were fixed using solutions of equivalent tonicities prior to processing for electron microscopy. The resulting anatomical sections demonstrated a partially reversible cell shrinkage corresponding to substantial increases in intracellular solute or ionic strength graded with extracellular tonicity. Serial thin sections through triad structures confirmed the presence of geometrically close but anatomically isolated transverse (T-) tubular and sarcoplasmic reticular (SR) membranes contrary to earlier suggestions for the development of luminal continuities between these structures in hypertonic solutions. They also quantitatively demonstrated accompanying decreases in T-SR distances, increased numbers of sections that showed closely apposed T and SR membranes, tubular luminal swelling and reductions in luminal volume of the junctional SR, all correlated with the imposed increases in extracellular osmolarity. Fully polarized fibres correspondingly showed elementary Ca(2+)-release events ('sparks', in 100 mM-sucrose-Ringer solution), sustained Ca2+ elevations and propagated Ca2+ waves (> or = 350-500 mM sucrose) following exposure to physiological Ringer solutions of successively greater tonicities. These were absent in hypotonic, isotonic or less strongly hypertonic (approximately 50 mM sucrose-Ringer) solutions. Yet exposure to hypotonic solutions also disrupted T-SR junctional anatomy. It increased the tubular diameters and T-SR distances and reduced their area of potential contact. The spontaneous release of intracellularly stored Ca2+ thus appears more closely to correlate with the expected changes in intracellular solute strength or

  9. Membrane potential stabilization in amphibian skeletal muscle fibres in hypertonic solutions

    PubMed Central

    Ferenczi, Emily A; Fraser, James A; Chawla, Sangeeta; Skepper, Jeremy N; Schwiening, Christof J; Huang, Christopher L-H

    2004-01-01

    This study investigated membrane transport mechanisms influencing relative changes in cell volume (V) and resting membrane potential (Em) following osmotic challenge in amphibian skeletal muscle fibres. It demonstrated a stabilization of Em despite cell shrinkage, which was attributable to elevation of intracellular [Cl−] above electrochemical equilibrium through Na+–Cl− and Na+−K+−2Cl− cotransporter action following exposures to extracellular hypertonicity. Fibre volumes (V) determined by confocal microscope xz-scanning of cutaneous pectoris muscle fibres varied linearly with [1/extracellular osmolarity], showing insignificant volume corrections, in fibres studied in Cl−-free, normal and Na+-free Ringer solutions and in the presence of bumetanide, chlorothiazide and ouabain. The observed volume changes following increases in extracellular tonicity were compared with microelectrode measurements of steady-state resting potentials (Em). Fibres in isotonic Cl−-free, normal and Na+-free Ringer solutions showed similar Em values consistent with previously reported permeability ratios PNa/PK(0.03–0.05) and PCl/PK (∼2.0) and intracellular [Na+], [K+] and [Cl−]. Increased extracellular osmolarities produced hyperpolarizing shifts in Em in fibres studied in Cl−-free Ringer solution consistent with the Goldman-Hodgkin-Katz (GHK) equation. In contrast, fibres exposed to hypertonic Ringer solutions of normal ionic composition showed no such Em shifts, suggesting a Cl−-dependent stabilization of membrane potential. This stabilization of Em was abolished by withdrawing extracellular Na+ or by the combined presence of the Na+–Cl− cotransporter (NCC) inhibitor chlorothiazide (10 μm) and the Na+−K+−2Cl− cotransporter (NKCC) inhibitor bumetanide (10 μm), or the Na+−K+-ATPase inhibitor ouabain (1 or 10 μm) during alterations in extracellular osmolarity. Application of such agents after such increases in tonicity only produced a

  10. Characterization of actomyosin bond properties in intact skeletal muscle by force spectroscopy

    PubMed Central

    Colombini, Barbara; Bagni, M. Angela; Romano, Giovanni; Cecchi, Giovanni

    2007-01-01

    Force generation and motion in skeletal muscle result from interaction between actin and myosin myofilaments through the cyclical formation and rupture of the actomyosin bonds, the cross-bridges, in the overlap region of the sarcomeres. Actomyosin bond properties were investigated here in single intact muscle fibers by using dynamic force spectroscopy. The force needed to forcibly detach the cross-bridge ensemble in the half-sarcomere (hs) was measured in a range of stretching velocity between 3.4 × 103 nm·hs−1·s−1 or 3.3 fiber length per second (l0s−1) and 6.1 × 104 nm·hs−1·s−1 or 50 l0·s−1 during tetanic force development. The rupture force of the actomyosin bond increased linearly with the logarithm of the loading rate, in agreement with previous experiments on noncovalent single bond and with Bell theory [Bell GI (1978) Science 200:618–627]. The analysis permitted calculation of the actomyosin interaction length, xβ and the dissociation rate constant for zero external load, k0. Mean xβ was 1.25 nm, a value similar to that reported for single actomyosin bond under rigor condition. Mean k0 was 20 s−1, a value about twice as great as that reported in the literature for isometric force relaxation in the same type of muscle fibers. These experiments show, for the first time, that force spectroscopy can be used to reveal the properties of the individual cross-bridge in intact skeletal muscle fibers. PMID:17517641

  11. Characterization of actomyosin bond properties in intact skeletal muscle by force spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Colombini, Barbara; Bagni, M Angela; Romano, Giovanni; Cecchi, Giovanni

    2007-05-29

    Force generation and motion in skeletal muscle result from interaction between actin and myosin myofilaments through the cyclical formation and rupture of the actomyosin bonds, the cross-bridges, in the overlap region of the sarcomeres. Actomyosin bond properties were investigated here in single intact muscle fibers by using dynamic force spectroscopy. The force needed to forcibly detach the cross-bridge ensemble in the half-sarcomere (hs) was measured in a range of stretching velocity between 3.4 x 10(3) nm.hs(-1).s(-1) or 3.3 fiber length per second (l(0)s(-1)) and 6.1 x 10(4) nm.hs(-1).s(-1) or 50 l(0).s(-1) during tetanic force development. The rupture force of the actomyosin bond increased linearly with the logarithm of the loading rate, in agreement with previous experiments on noncovalent single bond and with Bell theory [Bell GI (1978) Science 200:618-627]. The analysis permitted calculation of the actomyosin interaction length, x(beta) and the dissociation rate constant for zero external load, k(0). Mean x(beta) was 1.25 nm, a value similar to that reported for single actomyosin bond under rigor condition. Mean k(0) was 20 s(-1), a value about twice as great as that reported in the literature for isometric force relaxation in the same type of muscle fibers. These experiments show, for the first time, that force spectroscopy can be used to reveal the properties of the individual cross-bridge in intact skeletal muscle fibers.

  12. Phenol increases intracellular [Ca2+] during twitch contractions in intact Xenopus skeletal myofibers.

    PubMed

    Nogueira, Leonardo; Hogan, Michael C

    2010-11-01

    Phenol is a neurolytic agent used for management of spasticity in patients with either motoneuron lesions or stroke. In addition, compounds that enhance muscle contractility (i.e., polyphenols, etc.) may affect muscle function through the phenol group. However, the effects of phenol on muscle function are unknown, and it was, therefore, the purpose of the present investigation to examine the effects of phenol on tension development and Ca(2+) release in intact skeletal muscle fibers. Dissected intact muscle fibers from Xenopus laevis were electrically stimulated, and cytosolic Ca(2+) concentration ([Ca(2+)](c)) and tension development were recorded. During single twitches and unfused tetani, phenol significantly increased [Ca(2+)](c) and tension without affecting myofilament Ca(2+) sensitivity. To investigate the phenol effects on Ca(2+) channel/ryanodine receptors, single fibers were treated with different concentrations of caffeine in the presence and absence of phenol. Low concentrations of phenol significantly increased the caffeine sensitivity (P < 0.01) and reduced the caffeine concentrations necessary to produce nonstimulated contraction (contracture). However, at high phenol concentrations, caffeine did not increase tension or Ca(2+) release. These results suggest that phenol affects the ability of caffeine to release Ca(2+) through an effect on the ryanodine receptors, or on the sarcoplasmic reticulum Ca(2+) pump. During tetanic contractions inducing fatigue, phenol application decreased the time to fatigue. In summary, phenol increases intracellular [Ca(2+)] during twitch contractions in muscle fibers without altering myofilament Ca(2+) sensitivity and may be used as a new agent to study skeletal muscle Ca(2+) handling.

  13. Redox modulation of global phosphatase activity and protein phosphorylation in intact skeletal muscle

    PubMed Central

    Wright, Valerie P; Reiser, Peter J; Clanton, Thomas L

    2009-01-01

    Skeletal muscles produce transient reactive oxygen species (ROS) in response to intense stimulation, disuse atrophy, heat stress, hypoxia, osmotic stress, stretch and cell receptor activation. The physiological significance is not well understood. Protein phosphatases (PPases) are known to be highly sensitive to oxidants and could contribute to many different signalling responses in muscle. We tested whether broad categories of PPases are inhibited by levels of acute oxidant exposure that do not result in loss of contractile function or gross oxidative stress. We also tested if this exposure results in elevated levels of global protein phosphorylation. Rat diaphragm muscles were treated with either 2,3-dimethoxy-1-naphthoquinone (DMNQ; 1, 10, 100 μm; a mitochondrial O2•−/H2O2 generator) or exogenous H2O2 (5, 50, 500 μm) for 30 min. Supernatants were assayed for serine/threonine PPase (Ser/Thr-PPase) or protein tyrosine PPase (PTP) activities. With the exception of 500 μm H2O2, no other oxidant exposures significantly elevated protein carbonyl formation, nor did they alter the magnitude of twitch force. DMNQ significantly decreased all categories of PPase activity at 10 and 100 μm and reduced PTP at 1 μm. Similar reductions in Ser/Thr-PPase activity were seen in response to 50 and 500 μm H2O2 and PTP at 500 μm H2O2. ROS treatments resulted a dose-dependent increase in the phosphorylation states of many proteins. The data are consistent with the concept that PPases, within intact skeletal muscles, are highly sensitive to acute changes in ROS activity and that localized ROS play a critical role in lowering the barriers for effective phosphorylation events to occur in muscle cells, thus increasing the probability for cell signalling responses to proceed. PMID:19841000

  14. Reversal of the Myosin Power Stroke Induced by Fast Stretching of Intact Skeletal Muscle Fibers

    PubMed Central

    Colombini, Barbara; Nocella, Marta; Benelli, Giulia; Cecchi, Giovanni; Griffiths, Peter J.; Bagni, M. Angela

    2009-01-01

    Abstract Force generation and movement in skeletal muscle result from a cyclical interaction of overlapping myosin and actin filaments that permits the free energy of ATP hydrolysis to be converted into mechanical work. The rapid force recovery that occurs after a step release imposed on a muscle is thought to result from a synchronized tilting of myosin lever arms toward a position of lower free energy (the power stroke). We investigated the power stroke mechanism in intact muscle fibers of Rana esculenta using a fast stretch to detach forcibly cross-bridges. Stretches were applied either with or without a conditioning step release. Cross-bridge rupture tension was not significantly influenced by the release, whereas sarcomere elongation at the rupture point increased immediately after the release and returned to the prerelease condition within 15–20 ms, following a slower time course compared to the recovery of tension. These observations suggest that the rupture force of a bridge is unaltered by a conditioning release, but rupture must first be preceded by a power stroke reversal, which restores the prepower stroke state. The sarcomere extension at the rupture point indicates both the extent of this power stroke reversal and the time course of strained bridge replenishment. PMID:19948121

  15. Muscle repair and regeneration: stem cells, scaffolds, and the contributions of skeletal muscle to amphibian limb regeneration.

    PubMed

    Milner, Derek J; Cameron, Jo Ann

    2013-01-01

    Skeletal muscle possesses a robust innate capability for repair of tissue damage. Natural repair of muscle damage is a stepwise process that requires the coordinated activity of a number of cell types, including infiltrating macrophages, resident myogenic and non-myogenic stem cells, and connective tissue fibroblasts. Despite the proficiency of this intrinsic repair capability, severe injuries that result in significant loss of muscle tissue overwhelm the innate repair process and require intervention if muscle function is to be restored. Recent advances in stem cell biology, regenerative medicine, and materials science have led to attempts at developing tissue engineering-based methods for repairing severe muscle defects. Muscle tissue also plays a role in the ability of tailed amphibians to regenerate amputated limbs through epimorphic regeneration. Muscle contributes adult stem cells to the amphibian regeneration blastema, but it can also contribute blastemal cells through the dedifferentiation of multinucleate myofibers into mononuclear precursors. This fascinating plasticity and its contributions to limb regeneration have prompted researchers to investigate the potential for mammalian muscle to undergo dedifferentiation. Several works have shown that mammalian myotubes can be fragmented into mononuclear cells and induced to re-enter the cell cycle, but mature myofibers are resistant to fragmentation. However, recent works suggest that there may be a path to inducing fragmentation of mature myofibers into proliferative multipotent cells with the potential for use in muscle tissue engineering and regenerative therapies.

  16. Phosphorylation of insulin-like growth factor I receptor by insulin receptor tyrosine kinase in intact cultured skeletal muscle cells

    SciTech Connect

    Beguinot, F.; Smith, R.J.; Kahn, C.R.; Maron, R.; Moses, A.C.; White, M.F.

    1988-05-03

    The interaction between insulin and insulin-like growth factor I (IGF I) receptors was examined by determining the ability of each receptor type to phosphorylate tyrosine residues on the other receptor in intact L6 skeletal muscle cells. This was made possible through a sequential immunoprecipitation method with two different antibodies that effectively separated the phosphorylated insulin and IGF I receptors. After incubation of intact L6 cells with various concentrations of insulin or IGF I in the presence of (/sup 32/P)-orthophosphate, insulin receptors were precipitated with one of two human polyclonal anti-insulin receptor antibodies (B2 or B9). Phosphorylated IGF I receptors remained in solution and were subsequently precipitated by anti-phosphotyrosine antibodies. The identifies of the insulin and IGF I receptor ..beta..-subunits in the two immunoprecipitates were confirmed by binding affinity, by phosphopeptide mapping after trypsin digestion, and by the distinct patterns of expression of the two receptors during differentiation. Stimulated phosphorylation of the ..beta..-subunit of the insulin receptor correlated with the occupancy of the ..beta..-subunit of the insulin receptor by either insulin or IGF I as determined by affinity cross-linking. Similarly, stimulation of phosphorylation of the ..beta..-subunit of the IGF I receptor by IGF I correlated with IGF I receptor occupancy. In contrast, insulin stimulated phosphorylation of the ..beta..-subunit of the IGF I receptor at hormone concentrations that were associated with significant occupancy of the insulin receptor but negligible IGF I receptor occupancy. These findings indicate that the IGF I receptor can be a substrate for the hormone-activated insulin receptor tyrosine kinase activity in intact L6 skeletal muscle cells.

  17. Acclimation temperature affects the metabolic response of amphibian skeletal muscle to insulin.

    PubMed

    Petersen, Ann M; Gleeson, Todd T

    2011-09-01

    Frog skeletal muscle mainly utilizes the substrates glucose and lactate for energy metabolism. The goal of this study was to determine the effect of insulin on the uptake and metabolic fate of lactate and glucose at rest in skeletal muscle of the American bullfrog, Lithobates catesbeiana, under varying temperature regimens. We hypothesize that lactate and glucose metabolic pathways will respond differently to the presence of insulin in cold versus warm acclimated frog tissues, suggesting an interaction between temperature and metabolism under varying environmental conditions. We employed radiolabeled tracer techniques to measure in vitro uptake, oxidation, and incorporation of glucose and lactate into glycogen by isolated muscles from bullfrogs acclimated to 5 °C (cold) or 25 °C (warm). Isolated bundles from Sartorius muscles were incubated at 5 °C, 15 °C, or 25 °C, and in the presence and absence of 0.05 IU/mL bovine insulin. Insulin treatment in the warm acclimated and incubated frogs resulted in an increase in glucose incorporation into glycogen, and an increase in intracellular [glucose] of 0.5 μmol/g (P<0.05). Under the same conditions lactate incorporation into glycogen was reduced (P<0.05) in insulin-treated muscle. When compared to the warm treatment group, cold acclimation and incubation resulted in increased rates of glucose oxidation and glycogen synthesis, and a reduction in free intracellular glucose levels (P<0.05). When muscles from either acclimation group were incubated at an intermediate temperature of 15 °C, insulin's effect on substrate metabolism was attenuated or even reversed. Therefore, a significant interaction between insulin and acclimation condition in controlling skeletal muscle metabolism appears to exist. Our findings further suggest that one of insulin's actions in frog muscle is to increase glucose incorporation into glycogen, and to reduce reliance on lactate as the primary metabolic fuel.

  18. Muscle Atrophy in Response to Cytotoxic Chemotherapy Is Dependent on Intact Glucocorticoid Signaling in Skeletal Muscle

    PubMed Central

    Braun, Theodore P.; Szumowski, Marek; Levasseur, Peter R.; Grossberg, Aaron J.; Zhu, XinXia; Agarwal, Anupriya; Marks, Daniel L.

    2014-01-01

    Cancer cachexia is a syndrome of weight loss that results from the selective depletion of skeletal muscle mass and contributes significantly to cancer morbidity and mortality. The driver of skeletal muscle atrophy in cancer cachexia is systemic inflammation arising from both the cancer and cancer treatment. While the importance of tumor derived inflammation is well described, the mechanism by which cytotoxic chemotherapy contributes to cancer cachexia is relatively unexplored. We found that the administration of chemotherapy to mice produces a rapid inflammatory response. This drives activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, which increases the circulating level of corticosterone, the predominant endogenous glucocorticoid in rodents. Additionally, chemotherapy administration results in a significant loss of skeletal muscle mass 18 hours after administration with a concurrent induction of genes involved with the ubiquitin proteasome and autophagy lysosome systems. However, in mice lacking glucocorticoid receptor expression in skeletal muscle, chemotherapy-induced muscle atrophy is completely blocked. This demonstrates that cytotoxic chemotherapy elicits significant muscle atrophy driven by the production of endogenous glucocorticoids. Further, it argues that pharmacotherapy targeting the glucocorticoid receptor, given in concert with chemotherapy, is a viable therapeutic strategy in the treatment of cancer cachexia. PMID:25254959

  19. Expression of nestin, desmin and vimentin in intact and regenerating muscle spindles of rat hind limb skeletal muscles.

    PubMed

    Cízková, Dana; Soukup, Tomás; Mokrý, Jaroslav

    2009-02-01

    We describe the expression and distribution patterns of nestin, desmin and vimentin in intact and regenerating muscle spindles of the rat hind limb skeletal muscles. Regeneration was induced by intramuscular isotransplantation of extensor digitorum longus (EDL) or soleus muscles from 15-day-old rats into the EDL muscle of adult female inbred Lewis rats. The host muscles with grafts were excised after 7-, 16-, 21- and 29-day survival and immunohistochemically stained. Nestin expression in intact spindles in host muscles was restricted to Schwann cells of sensory and motor nerves. In transplanted muscles, however, nestin expression was also found in regenerating "spindle fibers", 7 and 16 days after grafting. From the 21st day onwards, the regenerated spindle fibers were devoid of nestin immunoreactivity. Desmin was detected in spindle fibers at all developmental stages in regenerating as well as in intact spindles. Vimentin was expressed in cells of the outer and inner capsules of all muscle spindles and in newly formed myoblasts and myotubes of regenerating spindles 7 days after grafting. Our results show that the expression pattern of these intermediate filaments in regenerating spindle fibers corresponds to that found in regenerating extrafusal fibers, which supports our earlier suggestion that they resemble small-diameter extrafusal fibers.

  20. Acetylcholinesterase activity in intact and homogenized skeletal muscle of the frog.

    PubMed Central

    Miledi, R; Molenaar, P C; Polak, R L

    1984-01-01

    Enzymatic hydrolysis of acetylcholine (ACh) was determined in intact frog sartorius muscles or their homogenates. The Vmax was 29 nmol min-1 in intact muscles and 46 nmol min-1 per muscle in homogenates, and the Km was 6 and 0.2 mM, respectively. The muscle was divided into small segments, which were homogenized; the junctional cholinesterase (ChE) accounted for 60% of total enzyme activity. At low substrate concentrations the rate of hydrolysis was up to 30 times higher in homogenates than in intact muscles. This difference was greatly reduced at very high substrate concentrations. It appears that most of the ChE in intact muscle is 'occluded' to external ACh, mainly because the ChE at the edges of the synaptic cleft prevents the ACh from reaching the enzyme situated further inwards, which consequently does not contribute to its hydrolysis; homogenization makes all synaptic ChE accessible to added ACh. Incubation of sartorius muscles with collagenase caused an 80% decrease in ChE activity (determined in homogenates) of end-plate-containing parts which became similar to that in end-plate-free parts on which collagenase had little effect. Histochemistry showed that the tendon-muscle junction contained folds which were stained intensively for ChE. Diethyldimethylpyrophosphonate , neostigmine, eserine, and di-isopropyl fluorophosphonate inhibited ChE activity in this order of potency. The I50 values (i.e. the concentrations of the drugs which caused a 50% inhibition) were about 5 times higher in intact than in homogenized tissue. Neostigmine, 0.15 and 0.4 microM, increased the time constant of miniature end-plate currents 1.3- and 1.8-fold, and slowed down ChE activity of muscle homogenates by 1.4 and 2.1 times, respectively, without significantly affecting ACh hydrolysis by intact muscles. This indicates that synaptic ChE is not present in large excess. It is concluded that ChE activity measured in homogenates presents a better picture of in situ ChE activity than

  1. Conduction velocities in amphibian skeletal muscle fibres exposed to hyperosmotic extracellular solutions.

    PubMed

    Chen, Zhongbo; Hothi, Sandeep S; Xu, Wei; Huang, Christopher L-H

    2007-01-01

    Early quantitative analyses of conduction velocities in unmyelinated nerve studied in a constantly iso-osmotic volume conductor were extended to an analysis of the effects of varying extracellular osmolarities on conduction velocities of surface membrane action potentials in Rana esculenta skeletal muscle fibres. Previous papers had reported that skeletal muscle fibres exposed to a wide range of extracellular sucrose concentrations resemble perfect osmometers with increased extracellular osmolarity proportionally decreasing fibre volume and therefore diminishing fibre radius, a. However, classical electrolyte theory (Robinson and Stokes 1959, Electrolyte solutions 2nd edn. Butterworth & Co. pp 41-42) would then predict that the consequent increases in intracellular ionic strength would correspondingly decrease sarcoplasmic resistivity, R(i). An extension of the original cable analysis then demonstrated that the latter would precisely offset its expected effect of alterations in a on the fibre axial resistance, r(i), and leave action potential conduction velocity constant. In contrast, other reports (Hodgkin and Nakajima J Physiol 221:105-120, 1972) had suggested that R(i) increased with extracellular osmolarity, owing to alterations in cytosolic viscosity. This led to a prediction of a decreased conduction velocity. These opposing hypotheses were then tested in muscle fibres subject to just-suprathreshold stimulation at a Vaseline seal at one end and measuring action potentials and their first order derivatives, dV/dt, using 5-20 MOmega, 3 M KCl glass microelectrodes at defined distances away from the stimulus sites. Exposures to hyperosmotic, sucrose-containing, Ringer solutions then reversibly reduced both conduction velocity and maximum values of dV/dt. This was compatible with an increase in R(i) in the event that conduction depended upon a discharge of membrane capacitance by propagating local circuit currents through initially passive electrical elements

  2. Localized nuclear and perinuclear Ca(2+) signals in intact mouse skeletal muscle fibers.

    PubMed

    Georgiev, Tihomir; Svirin, Mikhail; Jaimovich, Enrique; Fink, Rainer H A

    2015-01-01

    Nuclear Ca(2+) is important for the regulation of several nuclear processes such as gene expression. Localized Ca(2+) signals (LCSs) in skeletal muscle fibers of mice have been mainly studied as Ca(2+) release events from the sarcoplasmic reticulum. Their location with regard to cell nuclei has not been investigated. Our study is based on the hypothesis that LCSs associated with nuclei are present in skeletal muscle fibers of adult mice. Therefore, we carried out experiments addressing this question and we found novel Ca(2+) signals associated with nuclei of skeletal muscle fibers (with possibly attached satellite cells). We measured localized nuclear and perinuclear Ca(2+) signals (NLCSs and PLCSs) alongside cytosolic localized Ca(2+) signals (CLCSs) during a hypertonic treatment. We also observed NLCSs under isotonic conditions. The NLCSs and PLCSs are Ca(2+) signals in the range of micrometer [FWHM (full width at half maximum): 2.75 ± 0.27 μm (NLCSs) and 2.55 ± 0.17 μm (PLCSs), S.E.M.]. Additionally, global nuclear Ca(2+) signals (NGCSs) were observed. To investigate which type of Ca(2+) channels contribute to the Ca(2+) signals associated with nuclei in skeletal muscle fibers, we performed measurements with the RyR blocker dantrolene, the DHPR blocker nifedipine or the IP3R blocker Xestospongin C. We observed Ca(2+) signals associated with nuclei in the presence of each blocker. Nifedipine and dantrolene had an inhibitory effect on the fraction of fibers with PLCSs. The situation for the fraction of fibers with NLCSs is more complex indicating that RyR is less important for the generation of NLCSs compared to the generation of PLCSs. The fraction of fibers with NLCSs and PLCSs is not reduced in the presence of Xestospongin C. The localized perinuclear and intranuclear Ca(2+) signals may be a powerful tool for the cell to regulate adaptive processes as gene expression. The intranuclear Ca(2+) signals may be particularly interesting in this respect.

  3. Localized nuclear and perinuclear Ca2+ signals in intact mouse skeletal muscle fibers

    PubMed Central

    Georgiev, Tihomir; Svirin, Mikhail; Jaimovich, Enrique; Fink, Rainer H. A.

    2015-01-01

    Nuclear Ca2+ is important for the regulation of several nuclear processes such as gene expression. Localized Ca2+ signals (LCSs) in skeletal muscle fibers of mice have been mainly studied as Ca2+ release events from the sarcoplasmic reticulum. Their location with regard to cell nuclei has not been investigated. Our study is based on the hypothesis that LCSs associated with nuclei are present in skeletal muscle fibers of adult mice. Therefore, we carried out experiments addressing this question and we found novel Ca2+ signals associated with nuclei of skeletal muscle fibers (with possibly attached satellite cells). We measured localized nuclear and perinuclear Ca2+ signals (NLCSs and PLCSs) alongside cytosolic localized Ca2+ signals (CLCSs) during a hypertonic treatment. We also observed NLCSs under isotonic conditions. The NLCSs and PLCSs are Ca2+ signals in the range of micrometer [FWHM (full width at half maximum): 2.75 ± 0.27 μm (NLCSs) and 2.55 ± 0.17 μm (PLCSs), S.E.M.]. Additionally, global nuclear Ca2+ signals (NGCSs) were observed. To investigate which type of Ca2+ channels contribute to the Ca2+ signals associated with nuclei in skeletal muscle fibers, we performed measurements with the RyR blocker dantrolene, the DHPR blocker nifedipine or the IP3R blocker Xestospongin C. We observed Ca2+ signals associated with nuclei in the presence of each blocker. Nifedipine and dantrolene had an inhibitory effect on the fraction of fibers with PLCSs. The situation for the fraction of fibers with NLCSs is more complex indicating that RyR is less important for the generation of NLCSs compared to the generation of PLCSs. The fraction of fibers with NLCSs and PLCSs is not reduced in the presence of Xestospongin C. The localized perinuclear and intranuclear Ca2+ signals may be a powerful tool for the cell to regulate adaptive processes as gene expression. The intranuclear Ca2+ signals may be particularly interesting in this respect. PMID:26483696

  4. Effects of curcumin and ursolic acid on the mitochondrial coupling efficiency and hydrogen peroxide emission of intact skeletal myoblasts.

    PubMed

    Tueller, Daniel J; Harley, Jackson S; Hancock, Chad R

    2017-10-21

    Curcumin may improve blood glucose management, but the mechanism is not fully established. We demonstrated that curcumin (40 μM) reduced the mitochondrial coupling efficiency (percentage of oxygen consumption coupled to ATP synthesis) of intact skeletal muscle cells. A 30-minute pretreatment with curcumin reduced mitochondrial coupling efficiency by 17.0 ± 0.4% relative to vehicle (p < 0.008). Curcumin pretreatment also decreased the rate of hydrogen peroxide emission by 43 ± 13% compared to vehicle (p < 0.05). Analysis of cell respiration in the presence of curcumin revealed a 40 ± 4% increase in the rate of oxygen consumption upon curcumin administration (p < 0.05 compared to vehicle). No difference in mitochondrial coupling efficiency was observed between vehicle- and curcumin-pretreated cells after permeabilization of cell membranes (p > 0.7). The interaction between curcumin and ursolic acid, another natural compound that may improve blood glucose management, was also examined. Pretreatment with ursolic acid (0.12 μM) increased the mitochondrial coupling efficiency of intact cells by 4.1 ± 1.1% relative to vehicle (p < 0.008) and attenuated the effect of curcumin when the two compounds were used in combination. The observed changes to mitochondrial coupling efficiency and hydrogen peroxide emission were consistent with the established effects of curcumin on blood glucose control. Our findings also show that changes to mitochondrial coupling efficiency after curcumin pretreatment may go undetected unless cells are assessed in the intact condition. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. The effect of length on the relationship between tension and intracellular [Ca2+] in intact frog skeletal muscle fibres.

    PubMed

    Claflin, D R; Morgan, D L; Julian, F J

    1998-04-01

    1. The relationship between tension and intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca2+]i) in intact frog skeletal muscle fibres was determined at two fibre lengths, corresponding to mean sarcomere lengths (SL) of 2.2 and 2.9 micron. Tension and [Ca2+]i were recorded during the slow decline of tension following stimulation in the presence of cyclopiazonic acid (CPA), a sarcoplasmic reticulum Ca2+-uptake pump inhibitor. [Ca2+]i was estimated by injecting the K+ salt form of the fluorescent dye fura-2 into the fibres. Experimental temperature was 3.0 C. 2. At a SL of 2.2 micron, where thick and thin filaments fully overlap, the [Ca2+]i corresponding to 50 % tension generation ([Ca2+]50) was 1.09 +/- 0.02 microM (mean +/- S.E.M., n = 61 contractions). At a SL of 2.9 micron, where overlap is approximately 50 %, the [Ca2+]50 was significantly lower, 0.69 +/- 0. 02 microM (n = 22 contractions). This is in agreement with previous results from skinned fibres. 3. The relationship between tension and [Ca2+]i was very steep, as reported previously from experiments at a SL of 2.2 micron in which the membrane permeant acetoxymethyl ester form of fura-2 was used. The fall in tension from 90 to 10 % occurred in 0.12 +/- 0.01 pCa units (mean +/- S.E.M., n = 61) for a SL of 2.2 micron and 0.17 +/- 0.01 pCa units (n = 22) for a SL of 2.9 micron, corresponding to Hill coefficients of 15.4 and 10.9, respectively. 4. We conclude that the increase in sensitivity of tension to [Ca2+] that occurs in skinned skeletal muscle fibres upon stretch also occurs in intact fibres, that the steepness of the relation between tension and [Ca2+]i in intact fibres reported previously cannot be attributed to the use of the acetoxymethyl ester form of fura-2 to report [Ca2+]i, and that the steepness decreases as myofilament overlap decreases.

  6. Dependence of energy transduction in intact skeletal muscles on the time in tension.

    PubMed Central

    Kawai, M; Brandt, P; Orentlicher, M

    1977-01-01

    In intact single crayfish muscle fibers and frog semitendinosus muscles we have studied the tension response to sinusoidal length changes in the frequency range of 0.25-133 Hz. By this method we have resolved three processes in the interaction of myosin cross-bridges with actin in fully activated preparations. They are (A) a low-frequency phase advance, (B) a middle-frequency delay, and (C) a high-frequency advance. These processes can be used as probes to study the chemomechanical coupling of contractility. Process (B) represents net power output from the muscle preparation (oscillatory work). With maximal K or caffeine activation of crayfish muscle at 20 degrees C, it decreases to zero in the initial 45 s of maintained tension. Similar results were obtained with frog semitendinosus whole muscles. We interpret this decrease of (B) with time as a gradual decrease in actomyosin ATP-hydrolysis rate. PMID:140712

  7. Myoplasmic calcium transients monitored with purpurate indicator dyes injected into intact frog skeletal muscle fibers

    PubMed Central

    1991-01-01

    Intact single twitch fibers from frog muscle were studied on an optical bench apparatus after microinjection with tetramethylmurexide (TMX) or purpurate-3,3' diacetic acid (PDAA), two compounds from the purpurate family of absorbance Ca2+ indicators previously used in cut muscle fibers (Maylie, J., M. Irving, N. L. Sizto, G. Boyarsky, and W. K. Chandler. 1987. J. Gen. Physiol. 89:145-176; Hirota, A., W. K. Chandler, P. L. Southwick, and A. S. Waggoner. 1989. J. Gen. Physiol. 94:597-631.) The apparent longitudinal diffusion constant of PDAA (mol wt 380) in myoplasm was 0.99 (+/- 0.04, SEM) x 10(-6) cm2 s-1 (16-17 degrees C), a value which suggests that 24-43% of the PDAA molecules were bound to myoplasmic constituents of large molecular weight. The corresponding values for TMX (mol wt 322) were 0.98 (+/- 0.05) x 10(-6) cm2 s-1 and 44-50%, respectively. Muscle membranes (surface and/or transverse-tubular) appear to be permeable to TMX and, to a lesser extent, to PDAA, since the total amount of indicator contained within a fiber decreased with time after injection. The average time constants for disappearance of indicator were 46 (+/- 7, SEM) min for TMX and 338 (+/- 82) min for PDAA. The fraction of indicator in the Ca2(+)-bound state in resting fibers was significantly different from zero for TMX (0.070 +/- 0.008) but not for PDAA (0.026 +/- 0.009). In in vitro calibrations PDAA but not TMX appeared to react with Ca2+ with 1:1 stoichiometry. In agreement with Hirota et al. (Hirota, A., W. K. Chandler, P. L. Southwick, and A. S. Waggoner. 1989. J. Gen. Physiol. 94:597-631), we conclude that PDAA is probably a more reliable myoplasmic Ca2+ indicator than TMX. In fibers that contained PDAA and were stimulated by a single action potential, the calibrated peak value of the myoplasmic free [Ca2+] transient (delta[Ca2+]) averaged 9.4 (+/- 0.6) microM, a value about fivefold larger than that calibrated with antipyrylazo III under otherwise identical conditions (Baylor, S. M

  8. Development of a high-throughput method for real-time assessment of cellular metabolism in intact long skeletal muscle fibre bundles.

    PubMed

    Li, Rui; Steyn, Frederik J; Stout, Michael B; Lee, Kevin; Cully, Tanya R; Calderón, Juan C; Ngo, Shyuan T

    2016-12-15

    We developed a method that allows for real-time assessment of cellular metabolism in isolated, intact long skeletal muscle fibre bundles from adult mice. This method can be used to study changes in mitochondrial function and fuel utilisation in live skeletal muscle fibre bundles. Our method enables flexibility in experimental design and high-throughput assessment of mitochondrial parameters in isolated skeletal muscle fibre bundles. Extensor digitorum longus (EDL) fibre bundles obtained from chronic high-fat diet fed mice had lower basal oxygen consumption under FCCP-induced maximal respiration, when compared to control chow-fed mice. EDL fibre bundles obtained from chronic high-fat diet fed mice had enhanced mitochondrial oxidation capacity under FCCP-induced maximal respiration, when compared to control chow-fed mice. Metabolic dysfunction in skeletal muscle contributes to the aetiology and development of muscle diseases and metabolic diseases. As such, assessment of skeletal muscle cellular bioenergetics provides a powerful means to understand the role of skeletal muscle metabolism in disease and to identify possible therapeutic targets. Here, we developed a method that allows for the real-time assessment of cellular respiration in intact skeletal muscle fibre bundles obtained from the extensor digitorum longus (EDL) muscle of adult mice. Using this method, we assessed the contribution of ATP turnover and proton leak to basal mitochondrial oxygen consumption rate (OCR). Our data demonstrate that the mitochondria in EDL fibres are loosely coupled. Moreover, in the presence of carbonyl cyanide-p-trifluoromethoxyphenylhydrazone (FCCP), we show that palmitate exposure induced comparable peak OCR and higher total OCR in EDL fibre bundles when compared to pyruvate exposure, suggesting that fatty acids might be a more sustainable fuel source for skeletal muscle when mitochondria are driven to maximal respiration. Application of this method to EDL fibre bundles obtained

  9. Relaxation, [Ca2+]i and [Mg2+]i during prolonged tetanic stimulation of intact, single fibres from mouse skeletal muscle.

    PubMed Central

    Westerblad, H; Allen, D G

    1994-01-01

    1. In skeletal muscle there is generally a slowing of relaxation with increasing tetanus duration and it has been suggested that this is due to Ca2+ loading of parvalbumin (PA). To study this we have produced prolonged tetani in intact, single fibres from a mouse foot muscle which contain a high concentration of PA. We measured the rate of tension relaxation and also various aspects of Ca2+ handling. 2. During 'interrupted' tetani (15 repeated cycles of 100 ms with stimulation and 50 ms without) we observed a marked slowing of the relaxation both under control conditions and in acidosis (obtained by increasing the bath CO2 content). This slowing was not accompanied by any reduction of the initial rate of decline of the free myoplasmic Ca2+ concentration ([Ca2+]i), which was measured with indo-1. 3. The functioning of the sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) pump after tetani of various durations was analysed by plotting d[Ca2+]i/dt vs. [Ca2+]i during the final slow decline of [Ca2+]i after tetani. This analysis showed that the rate of SR Ca2+ pumping after a 1 s tetanus is less than half of that after a 100 ms tetanus. 4. The amplitude of the tail of [Ca2+]i 250 ms into relaxation was measured after tetani of various durations. This amplitude increased with tetanus duration and could be fitted to the sum of one exponential and one linear function. The exponential component increased with a time constant of 0.17 s and probably reflects Ca2+ loading of PA. 5. Ca2+ binding to PA will displace Mg2+ and hence the free myoplasmic concentration of Mg2+ ([Mg2+]i) will increase. To study this we used the fluorescent Mg2+ indicator furaptra. The results showed an increase of [Mg2+]i during prolonged tetani which, after removing the Ca2+ component of the fluorescent signal, amounted to about 0.5 mM. 6. A model of Ca2+ movements and tension production in skeletal muscle was used. The model showed that the increase of the amplitude of [Ca2+]i tails after tetani of various durations can

  10. Colocalization properties of elementary Ca(2+) release signals with structures specific to the contractile filaments and the tubular system of intact mouse skeletal muscle fibers.

    PubMed

    Georgiev, Tihomir; Zapiec, Bolek; Förderer, Moritz; Fink, Rainer H A; Vogel, Martin

    2015-12-01

    Ca(2+) regulates several important intracellular processes. We combined second harmonic generation (SHG) and two photon excited fluorescence microscopy (2PFM) to simultaneously record the SHG signal of the myosin filaments and localized elementary Ca(2+) release signals (LCSs). We found LCSs associated with Y-shaped structures of the myosin filament pattern (YMs), so called verniers, in intact mouse skeletal muscle fibers under hypertonic treatment. Ion channels crucial for the Ca(2+) regulation are located in the tubular system, a system that is important for Ca(2+) regulation and excitation-contraction coupling. We investigated the tubular system of intact, living mouse skeletal muscle fibers using 2PFM and the fluorescent Ca(2+) indicator Fluo-4 dissolved in the external solution or the membrane dye di-8-ANEPPS. We simultaneously measured the SHG signal from the myosin filaments of the skeletal muscle fibers. We found that at least a subset of the YMs observed in SHG images are closely juxtaposed with Y-shaped structures of the transverse tubules (YTs). The distances of corresponding YMs and YTs yield values between 1.3 μm and 4.1 μm including pixel uncertainty with a mean distance of 2.52±0.10 μm (S.E.M., n=41). Additionally, we observed that some of the linear-shaped areas in the tubular system are colocalized with linear-shaped areas in the SHG images. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. [The effect of space flight factors on the intact and regenerating skeletal muscles of the extremities in newts].

    PubMed

    Tuchkova, S Ia

    1997-01-01

    The influence of space flight factors on the structure of two skeletal muscles of the hindlimbs was studied in newts. Degenerative-atrophic changes took place in the both muscles of the flight group animals. Comparative-quantitative analysis of ultrastructural changes of the muscle tissue has shown that after space flight, the rate of structural defects of the muscle was twice that in animals of the synchronous and laboratory control groups. But these changes were reversible: within 10 days, the structure of the muscle fibers was practically normalized. The influence of space flight on repair regeneration of the hindlimb skeletal muscle was also studied: the muscle was minced and placed back in its bed 14 days before the flight. Under these conditions, the repair regeneration of the muscle was not suppressed, but a trend towards its delay was found.

  12. Amphibian mycobacteriosis.

    PubMed

    Martinho, Filipe; Heatley, J Jill

    2012-01-01

    Amphibians are commonly kept in laboratory and zoological facilities and are becoming more frequent as pets. However, many amphibian species are declining in the wild owing to a variety of infectious and noninfectious diseases. This article reviews the current state of knowledge of mycobacteriosis in amphibian species, including pathogenesis, clinical signs, appropriate diagnostics, treatment options, and zoonotic potential and prevention. It is hoped this review will provide clinical veterinarians and scientists the tools they need to provide better care for amphibian species suffering mycobacteriosis, as well as serve to stimulate additional research into amphibians affected by mycobacterosis.

  13. Unloaded speed of shortening in voltage-clamped intact skeletal muscle fibers from wt, mdx, and transgenic minidystrophin mice using a novel high-speed acquisition system.

    PubMed

    Friedrich, O; Weber, C; von Wegner, F; Chamberlain, J S; Fink, R H A

    2008-06-01

    Skeletal muscle unloaded shortening has been indirectly determined in the past. Here, we present a novel high-speed optical tracking technique that allows recording of unloaded shortening in single intact, voltage-clamped mammalian skeletal muscle fibers with 2-ms time resolution. L-type Ca(2+) currents were simultaneously recorded. The time course of shortening was biexponential: a fast initial phase, tau(1), and a slower successive phase, tau(2,) with activation energies of 59 kJ/mol and 47 kJ/mol. Maximum unloaded shortening speed, v(u,max), was faster than that derived using other techniques, e.g., approximately 14.0 L(0) s(-1) at 30 degrees C. Our technique also allowed direct determination of shortening acceleration. We applied our technique to single fibers from C57 wild-type, dystrophic mdx, and minidystrophin-expressing mice to test whether unloaded shortening was affected in the pathophysiological mechanism of Duchenne muscular dystrophy. v(u,max) and a(u,max) values were not significantly different in the three strains, whereas tau(1) and tau(2) were increased in mdx fibers. The results were complemented by myosin heavy and light chain (MLC) determinations that showed the same myosin heavy chain IIA profiles in the interossei muscles from the different strains. In mdx muscle, MLC-1f was significantly increased and MLC-2f and MLC-3f somewhat reduced. Fast initial active shortening seems almost unaffected in mdx muscle.

  14. Insulin receptor phosphorylation, insulin receptor substrate-1 phosphorylation, and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase activity are decreased in intact skeletal muscle strips from obese subjects.

    PubMed Central

    Goodyear, L J; Giorgino, F; Sherman, L A; Carey, J; Smith, R J; Dohm, G L

    1995-01-01

    To determine whether the impaired insulin-stimulated glucose uptake in obese individuals is associated with altered insulin receptor signaling, we measured both glucose uptake and early steps in the insulin action pathway in intact strips of human skeletal muscle. Biopsies of rectus abdominus muscle were taken from eight obese and eight control subjects undergoing elective surgery (body mass index 52.9 +/- 3.6 vs 25.7 +/- 0.9). Insulin-stimulated 2-deoxyglucose uptake was 53% lower in muscle strips from obese subjects. Additional muscle strips were incubated in the basal state or with 10(-7) M insulin for 2, 15, or 30 min. In the lean subjects, tyrosine phosphorylation of the insulin receptor and insulin receptor substrate-1 (IRS-1), measured by immunoblotting with anti-phosphotyrosine antibodies, was significantly increased by insulin at all time points. In the skeletal muscle from the obese subjects, insulin was less effective in stimulating tyrosine phosphorylation (maximum receptor and IRS-1 phosphorylation decreased by 35 and 38%, respectively). Insulin stimulation of IRS-1 immunoprecipitable phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI 3-kinase) activity also was markedly lower in obese subjects compared with controls (10- vs 35-fold above basal, respectively). In addition, the obese subjects had a lower abundance of the insulin receptor, IRS-1, and the p85 subunit of PI 3-kinase (55, 54, and 64% of nonobese, respectively). We conclude that impaired insulin-stimulated glucose uptake in skeletal muscle from severely obese subjects is accompanied by a deficiency in insulin receptor signaling, which may contribute to decreased insulin action. Images PMID:7537758

  15. Effect of pre-irradiation with different doses, wavelengths, and application intervals of low-level laser therapy on cytochrome c oxidase activity in intact skeletal muscle of rats.

    PubMed

    Albuquerque-Pontes, Gianna Móes; Vieira, Rodolfo de Paula; Tomazoni, Shaiane Silva; Caires, Cláudia Oliveira; Nemeth, Victoria; Vanin, Adriane Aver; Santos, Larissa Aline; Pinto, Henrique Dantas; Marcos, Rodrigo Labat; Bjordal, Jan Magnus; de Carvalho, Paulo de Tarso Camillo; Leal-Junior, Ernesto Cesar Pinto

    2015-01-01

    Modulation of cytochrome c oxidase activity has been pointed as a possible key mechanism for low-level laser therapy (LLLT) in unhealthy biological tissues. But recent studies by our research group with LLLT in healthy muscles before exercise found delayed skeletal muscle fatigue development and improved biochemical status in muscle tissue. Therefore, the aim of this study was to evaluate effects of different LLLT doses and wavelengths in cytochrome c oxidase activity in intact skeletal muscle. In this animal experiment, we irradiated the tibialis anterior muscle of rats with three different LLLT doses (1, 3, and 10 J) and wavelengths (660, 830, and 905 nm) with 50 mW power output. After irradiation, the analyses of cytochrome c oxidase expression by immunohistochemistry were analyzed at 5, 10, 30 min and at 1, 2, 12, and 24 h. Our results show that LLLT increased (p < 0.05) cytochrome c oxidase expression mainly with the following wavelengths and doses: 660 nm with 1 J, 830 nm with 3 J, and 905 nm with 1 J at all time points. We conclude that LLLT can increase cytochrome c oxidase activity in intact skeletal muscle and that it contributes to our understanding of how LLLT can enhance performance and protect skeletal muscles against fatigue development and tissue damage. Our findings also lead us to think that the combined use of different wavelengths at the same time can enhance LLLT effects in skeletal muscle performance and other conditions, and it can represent a therapeutic advantage in clinical settings.

  16. Amphibian Bioacoustics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Christensen-Dalsgaard, Jakob

    Anuran amphibians (frogs and toads) of most of the 3,500 species that exist today are highly vocal animals. In most frogs, males will spend considerable energy on calling and incur sizeable predation risks and the females’ detection and localization of the calls of conspecific males is often a prerequisite for successful mating. Therefore, acoustic communication is evidently evolutionarily important in the anurans, and their auditory system is probably shaped by the selective pressures associated with production, detection and localization of the communication calls.

  17. Lack of skeletal effect of soy isoflavones in intact growing, female rats may be explained by constant serum estrogenic activity despite reduced serum estradiol.

    PubMed

    Peterson, Catherine A; Kubas, Karen L; Hartman, Stephanie J; Rottinghaus, George E; Taylor, Julia A; Welshons, Wade V

    2008-01-01

    Scarce data exist on the effects of soy isoflavones (IF) on bone during peripuberty, a known 'window of opportunity' for bone consolidation. Our aim was to determine the skeletal, reproductive, and serum estradiol (E(2))/estrogenic activity response of consuming naturally-occurring soy protein-associated IF during peripuberty. Weanling (approximately 3 weeks old), female rats were placed on one of four nutritionally-complete dietary regimens in which protein (200 g/kg diet) was provided as casein or soy protein isolates containing either 0.11 (Low IF), 2.16 (Med IF), or 3.95 (High IF) mg total aglycone isoflavones/g protein for 8 weeks, during which body weights and estrus cycling were recorded. Bone growth and density were unaffected by soy intake while the reproductive tissues showed a slight response (greater uterine weights of the Med and High IF groups). Despite suppression of E(2) concentrations in the High IF group, total circulating estrogenic activity was unaltered. Moreover, in the High IF group, E(2) was significantly depressed compared with bioassayable estrogenic activity, suggesting negative feedback inhibition of E(2) by the elevated circulating levels of IF. This suppression in E(2) with maintenance of total serum estrogenicity in the High IF group may explain the lack of effect observed in the skeletal tissues. (c) 2008 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  18. Acid tolerance in amphibians

    SciTech Connect

    Pierce, B.A.

    1985-04-01

    Studies of amphibian acid tolerance provide information about the potential effects of acid deposition on amphibian communities. Amphibians as a group appear to be relatively acid tolerant, with many species suffering increased mortality only below pH 4. However, amphibians exhibit much intraspecific variation in acid tolerance, and some species are sensitive to even low levels of acidity. Furthermore, nonlethal effects, including depression of growth rates and increases in developmental abnormalities, can occur at higher pH.

  19. Endoscopy in Amphibians.

    PubMed

    Chai, Norin

    2015-09-01

    Despite advances in exotic animal endoscopy, descriptions involving amphibians are scarce. Amphibian endoscopy shares some similarities with reptiles, especially in lizards. Selected procedures are discussed, including stomatoscopy, gastroscopy, coelioscopy, and biopsy of coelomic organs and lesions. This short overview provides the practitioner with pragmatic advice on how to conduct safe and effective endoscopic examinations in amphibians. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Diseases of amphibians.

    PubMed

    Densmore, Christine L; Green, David Earl

    2007-01-01

    The development and refinement of amphibian medicine comprise an ongoing science that reflects the unique life history of these animals and our growing knowledge of amphibian diseases. Amphibians are notoriously fastidious in terms of captive care requirements, and the majority of diseases of amphibians maintained in captivity will relate directly or indirectly to husbandry and management. Investigators have described many infectious and noninfectious diseases that occur among various species of captive and wild amphibians, and there is considerable overlap in the diseases of captive versus free-ranging populations. In this article, some of the more commonly reported infectious and noninfectious diseases as well as their etiological agents and causative factors are reviewed. Some of the more common amphibian diseases with bacterial etiologies include bacterial dermatosepticemia or "red leg syndrome," flavobacteriosis, mycobacteriosis, and chlamydiosis. The most common viral diseases of amphibians are caused by the ranaviruses, which have an impact on many species of anurans and caudates. Mycotic and mycotic-like organisms cause a number of diseases among amphibians, including chytridiomycosis, zygomycoses, chromomycoses, saprolegniasis, and ichthyophoniasis. Protozoan parasites of amphibians include a variety of amoeba, ciliates, flagellates, and sporozoans Common metazoan parasites include various myxozoans, helminths (particularly trematodes and nematodes), and arthropods. Commonly encountered noninfectious disease etiologies for amphibians include neoplasia, absolute or specific nutritional deficiencies or overloads, chemical toxicities, and inadequate husbandry or environmental management.

  1. Head-Head Interactions of Resting Myosin Crossbridges in Intact Frog Skeletal Muscles, Revealed by Synchrotron X-Ray Fiber Diffraction

    PubMed Central

    Oshima, Kanji; Sugimoto, Yasunobu; Irving, Thomas C.; Wakabayashi, Katsuzo

    2012-01-01

    The intensities of the myosin-based layer lines in the x-ray diffraction patterns from live resting frog skeletal muscles with full thick-thin filament overlap from which partial lattice sampling effects had been removed were analyzed to elucidate the configurations of myosin crossbridges around the thick filament backbone to nanometer resolution. The repeat of myosin binding protein C (C-protein) molecules on the thick filaments was determined to be 45.33 nm, slightly longer than that of myosin crossbridges. With the inclusion of structural information for C-proteins and a pre-powerstroke head shape, modeling in terms of a mixed population of regular and perturbed regions of myosin crown repeats along the filament revealed that the myosin filament had azimuthal perturbations of crossbridges in addition to axial perturbations in the perturbed region, producing pseudo-six-fold rotational symmetry in the structure projected down the filament axis. Myosin crossbridges had a different organization about the filament axis in each of the regular and perturbed regions. In the regular region that lacks C-proteins, there were inter-molecular interactions between the myosin heads in axially adjacent crown levels. In the perturbed region that contains C-proteins, in addition to inter-molecular interactions between the myosin heads in the closest adjacent crown levels, there were also intra-molecular interactions between the paired heads on the same crown level. Common features of the interactions in both regions were interactions between a portion of the 50-kDa-domain and part of the converter domain of the myosin heads, similar to those found in the phosphorylation-regulated invertebrate myosin. These interactions are primarily electrostatic and the converter domain is responsible for the head-head interactions. Thus multiple head-head interactions of myosin crossbridges also characterize the switched-off state and have an important role in the regulation or other functions

  2. Sex Reversal in Amphibians.

    PubMed

    Flament, Stéphane

    2016-01-01

    Amphibians have been widely used to study developmental biology due to the fact that embryo development takes place independently of the maternal organism and that observations and experimental approaches are easy. Some amphibians like Xenopus became model organisms in this field. In the first part of this article, the differentiation of the gonads in amphibians and the mechanisms governing this process are reviewed. In the second part, the state of the art about sex reversal, which can be induced by steroid hormones in general and by temperature in some species, is presented. Also information about pollutants found in the environment that could interfere with the development of the amphibian reproductive apparatus or with their reproductive physiology is given. Such compounds could play a part in the amphibian decline, since in the wild, many amphibians are endangered species. © 2016 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  3. Variations in cross-bridge attachment rate and tension with phosphorylation of myosin in mammalian skinned skeletal muscle fibers. Implications for twitch potentiation in intact muscle

    PubMed Central

    1989-01-01

    The Ca2+ sensitivities of the rate constant of tension redevelopment (ktr; Brenner, B., and E. Eisenberg. 1986. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 83:3542-3546) and isometric force during steady- state activation were examined as functions of myosin light chain 2 (LC2) phosphorylation in skinned single fibers from rabbit and rat fast- twitch skeletal muscles. To measure ktr the fiber was activated with Ca2+ and steady isometric tension was allowed to develop; subsequently, the fiber was rapidly (less than 1 ms) released to a shorter length and then reextended by approximately 200 nm per half sarcomere. This maneuver resulted in the complete dissociation of cross-bridges from actin, so that the subsequent redevelopment of tension was related to the rate of cross-bridge reattachment. The time course of tension redevelopment, which was recorded under sarcomere length control, was best fit by a first-order exponential equation (i.e., tension = C(1 - e- kt) to obtain the value of ktr. In control fibers, ktr increased sigmoidally with increases in [Ca2+]; maximum values of ktr were obtained at pCa 4.5 and were significantly greater in rat superficial vastus lateralis fibers (26.1 +/- 1.2 s-1 at 15 degrees C) than in rabbit psoas fibers (18.7 +/- 1.0 s-1). Phosphorylation of LC2 was accomplished by repeated Ca2+ activations (pCa 4.5) of the fibers in solutions containing 6 microM calmodulin and 0.5 microM myosin light chain kinase, a protocol that resulted in an increase in LC2 phosphorylation from approximately 10% in the control fibers to greater than 80% after treatment. After phosphorylation, ktr was unchanged at maximum or very low levels of Ca2+ activation. However, at intermediate levels of Ca2+ activation, between pCa 5.5 and 6.2, there was a significant increase in ktr such that this portion of the ktr-pCa relationship was shifted to the left. The steady-state isometric tension-pCa relationship, which in control fibers was left shifted with respect

  4. Surgery in Amphibians.

    PubMed

    Chai, Norin

    2016-01-01

    Amphibian surgery has been especially described in research. Since the last decade, interest for captive amphibians has increased, so have the indications for surgical intervention. Clinicians should not hesitate to advocate such manipulations. Amphibian surgeries have no overwhelming obstacles. These patients heal well and tolerate blood loss more than higher vertebrates. Most procedures described in reptiles (mostly lizards) can be undertaken in most amphibians if equipment can be matched to the patients' size. In general, the most difficult aspect would be the provision of adequate anesthesia. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Amphibian renal disease.

    PubMed

    Cecil, Todd R

    2006-01-01

    Amphibians by nature have an intimate connection with the aquatic environment at some stage of development and fight an osmotic battle due to the influx of water. Many amphibians have acquired a more terrestrial existence at later stages of development and consequently have physiologic adaptations to conserve moisture. Renal adaptations have allowed amphibians successfully to bridge the gap between aqueous and terrestrial habitats. The kidneys, skin,and, in many amphibian species, the urinary bladder play key roles in fluid homeostasis. Renal impairment may be responsible for the clinical manifestation of disease, morbidity, and mortality.

  6. Climate change and amphibians

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Corn, P.S.

    2005-01-01

    Amphibian life histories are exceedingly sensitive to temperature and precipitation, and there is good evidence that recent climate change has already resulted in a shift to breeding earlier in the year for some species. There are also suggestions that the recent increase in the occurrence of El Niño events has caused declines of anurans in Central America and is linked to elevated mortality of amphibian embryos in the northwestern United States. However, evidence linking amphibian declines in Central America to climate relies solely on correlations, and the mechanisms underlying the declines are not understood. Connections between embryo mortality and declines in abundance have not been demonstrated. Analyses of existing data have generally failed to find a link between climate and amphibian declines. It is likely, however, that future climate change will cause further declines of some amphibian species. Reduced soil moisture could reduce prey species and eliminate habitat. Reduced snowfall and increased summer evaporation could have dramatic effects on the duration or occurrence of seasonal wetlands, which are primary habitat for many species of amphibians. Climate change may be a relatively minor cause of current amphibian declines, but it may be the biggest future challenge to the persistence of many species

  7. Reproductive Medicine in Amphibians.

    PubMed

    Chai, Norin

    2017-05-01

    Reproduction of amphibians includes ovulation, spermiation, fertilization, oviposition, larval stage and development, and metamorphosis. A problem at any stage could lead to reproductive failure. To stimulate reproduction, environmental conditions must be arranged to simulate changes in natural habits. Reproductive life history is well documented in amphibians; a thorough knowledge of this subject will aid the practitioner in diagnosis and treatment. Technologies for artificial reproduction are developing rapidly, and some protocols may be transferable to privately kept or endangered species. Reproductive tract disorders are rarely described; no bacterial or viral diseases are known that specifically target the amphibian reproductive system. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Antiviral immunity in amphibians.

    PubMed

    Chen, Guangchun; Robert, Jacques

    2011-11-01

    Although a variety of virus species can infect amphibians, diseases caused by ranaviruses ([RVs]; Iridoviridae) have become prominent, and are a major concern for biodiversity, agriculture and international trade. The relatively recent and rapid increase in prevalence of RV infections, the wide range of host species infected by RVs, the variability in host resistance among population of the same species and among different developmental stages, all suggest an important involvement of the amphibian immune system. Nevertheless, the roles of the immune system in the etiology of viral diseases in amphibians are still poorly investigated. We review here the current knowledge of antiviral immunity in amphibians, focusing on model species such as the frog Xenopus and the salamander (Ambystoma tigrinum), and on recent progress in generating tools to better understand how host immune defenses control RV infections, pathogenicity, and transmission.

  9. Vikers Viking Amphibian - biplane

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1924-01-01

    Vikers Viking Amphibian - biplane: Initially procured in 1921 by the U.S. Navy during their studies of foreign designs, the Vickers Viking IV became NACA 17 during its short period of study at Langley.

  10. AMPHIBIAN POPULATION DYNAMICS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Agriculture has contributed to loss of vertebrate biodiversity in many regions, including the U.S. Corn Belt. Amphibian populations, in particular, have experienced widespread and often inexplicable declines, range reductions, and extinctions. However, few attempts have been made...

  11. AMPHIBIAN POPULATION DYNAMICS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Agriculture has contributed to loss of vertebrate biodiversity in many regions, including the U.S. Corn Belt. Amphibian populations, in particular, have experienced widespread and often inexplicable declines, range reductions, and extinctions. However, few attempts have been made...

  12. Amphibian biology and husbandry.

    PubMed

    Pough, F Harvey

    2007-01-01

    Extant amphibians comprise three lineages-- salamanders (Urodela or Caudata), frogs and toads (Anura), and caecilians (Gymnophiona, Apoda, or Caecilia)--which contain more than 6,000 species. Fewer than a dozen species of amphibians are commonly maintained in laboratory colonies, and the husbandry requirements for the vast majority of amphibians are poorly known. For these species, a review of basic characteristics of amphibian biology supplemented by inferences drawn from the morphological and physiological characteristics of the species in question provides a basis for decisions about housing and feeding. Amphibians are ectotherms, and their skin is permeable to water, ions, and respiratory gases. Most species are secretive and, in many cases, nocturnal. The essential characteristics of their environment include appropriate levels of humidity, temperature, and lighting as well as retreat sites. Terrestrial and arboreal species require moist substrates, water dishes, and high relative humidity. Because temperature requirements for most species are poorly known, it is advisable to use a temperature mosaic that will allow an animal to find an appropriate temperature within its cage. Photoperiod may affect physiology and behavior (especially reproduction and hibernation), and although the importance of ultraviolet light for calcium metabolism by amphibians is not yet known, ecological observations suggest that it might be important for some species of frogs. Some amphibians are territorial, and some use olfactory cues to mark their territory and to recognize other individuals of their species. All amphibians are carnivorous as adults, and the feeding response of many species is elicited by the movement of prey. Diets should include a mixture of prey species, and it may be advisable to load prey with vitamins and minerals.

  13. Ossification sequence heterochrony among amphibians.

    PubMed

    Harrington, Sean M; Harrison, Luke B; Sheil, Christopher A

    2013-01-01

    Heterochrony is an important mechanism in the evolution of amphibians. Although studies have centered on the relationship between size and shape and the rates of development, ossification sequence heterochrony also may have been important. Rigorous, phylogenetic methods for assessing sequence heterochrony are relatively new, and a comprehensive study of the relative timing of ossification of skeletal elements has not been used to identify instances of sequence heterochrony across Amphibia. In this study, a new version of the program Parsimov-based genetic inference (PGi) was used to identify shifts in ossification sequences across all extant orders of amphibians, for all major structural units of the skeleton. PGi identified a number of heterochronic sequence shifts in all analyses, the most interesting of which seem to be tied to differences in metamorphic patterns among major clades. Early ossification of the vomer, premaxilla, and dentary is retained by Apateon caducus and members of Gymnophiona and Urodela, which lack the strongly biphasic development seen in anurans. In contrast, bones associated with the jaws and face were identified as shifting late in the ancestor of Anura. The bones that do not shift late, and thereby occupy the earliest positions in the anuran cranial sequence, are those in regions of the skull that undergo the least restructuring throughout anuran metamorphosis. Additionally, within Anura, bones of the hind limb and pelvic girdle were also identified as shifting early in the sequence of ossification, which may be a result of functional constraints imposed by the drastic metamorphosis of most anurans. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  14. Muscle regeneration in amphibians and mammals: passing the torch.

    PubMed

    Carlson, Bruce M

    2003-02-01

    Skeletal muscle in both amphibians and mammals possesses a high regenerative capacity. In amphibians, a muscle can regenerate in two distinct ways: as a tissue component of an entire regenerating limb (epimorphic regeneration) or as an isolated entity (tissue regeneration). In the absence of epimorphic regenerative ability, mammals can regenerate muscles only by the tissue mode. This review focuses principally on the regeneration of entire muscles and covers what is known and what remains to be elucidated about fundamental mechanisms underlying muscle regeneration at this level.

  15. Adaptive colouration in amphibians.

    PubMed

    Rudh, Andreas; Qvarnström, Anna

    2013-01-01

    Amphibians, i.e. salamanders, frogs and caecilians show a wide range of bright colours in combination with contrasting patterns. There is variation among species, populations and also within species and populations. Furthermore, individuals often change colours during developmental stages or in response to environmental factors. This extraordinary variation means that there are excellent opportunities to test hypotheses of the adaptive significance of colours using amphibian species as models. We review the present view of functions of colouration in amphibians with the main focus on relatively unexplored topics. Variation in colouration has been found to play a role in thermoregulation, UV protection, predator avoidance and sexual signalling. However, many proposed cases of adaptive functions of colouration in amphibians remain virtually scientifically unexplored and surprisingly few genes influencing pigmentation or patterning have been detected. We would like to especially encourage more studies that take advantage of recent developments in measurement of visual properties of several possible signalling receivers (e.g. predators, competitors or mates). Future investigations on interactions between behaviour, ecology and vision have the potential to challenge our current view of the adaptive function of colouration in amphibians.

  16. Developmental diversity of amphibians.

    PubMed

    Elinson, Richard P; del Pino, Eugenia M

    2012-01-01

    The current model amphibian, Xenopus laevis, develops rapidly in water to a tadpole which metamorphoses into a frog. Many amphibians deviate from the X. laevis developmental pattern. Among other adaptations, their embryos develop in foam nests on land or in pouches on their mother's back or on a leaf guarded by a parent. The diversity of developmental patterns includes multinucleated oogenesis, lack of RNA localization, huge non-pigmented eggs, and asynchronous, irregular early cleavages. Variations in patterns of gastrulation highlight the modularity of this critical developmental period. Many species have eliminated the larva or tadpole and directly develop to the adult. The wealth of developmental diversity among amphibians coupled with the wealth of mechanistic information from X. laevis permit comparisons that provide deeper insights into developmental processes.

  17. DEVELOPMENTAL DIVERSITY OF AMPHIBIANS

    PubMed Central

    Elinson, Richard P.; del Pino, Eugenia M.

    2011-01-01

    The current model amphibian, Xenopus laevis, develops rapidly in water to a tadpole which metamorphoses into a frog. Many amphibians deviate from the X. laevis developmental pattern. Among other adaptations, their embryos develop in foam nests on land or in pouches on their mother’s back or on a leaf guarded by a parent. The diversity of developmental patterns includes multinucleated oogenesis, lack of RNA localization, huge non-pigmented eggs, and asynchronous, irregular early cleavages. Variations in patterns of gastrulation highlight the modularity of this critical developmental period. Many species have eliminated the larva or tadpole and directly develop to the adult. The wealth of developmental diversity among amphibians coupled with the wealth of mechanistic information from X. laevis permit comparisons that provide deeper insights into developmental processes. PMID:22662314

  18. Invasive reptiles and amphibians.

    PubMed

    Moutou, F; Pastoret, P P

    2010-08-01

    Although they are frequently lumped together, reptiles and amphibians belong to two very different zoological groups. Nevertheless, one fact is clear: while numerous reptile and amphibian species on Earth are in decline, others have taken advantage of trade or human movements to become established in new lands, adopting different, and sometimes unusual, strategies. The authors have taken a few examples from these two zoological groups that illustrate the majority of cases. A brief analysis of the causes and effects of their introductions into new areas reveals connections with economic interests, trade in companion animals, medical research and public health.

  19. Hypometabolic homeostasis in overwintering aquatic amphibians.

    PubMed

    Boutilier, R G; Donohoe, P H; Tattersall, G J; West, T G

    1997-01-01

    Many amphibians encounter conditions each winter when their body temperature is so low that normal activities are suspended and the animals enter into a state of torpor. In ice-covered ponds or lakes, oxygen levels may also become limiting, thereby forcing animals to endure prolonged periods of severe hypoxia or anoxia. Certain frogs (e.g. Rana temporaria) can dramatically suppress their metabolism in anoxia but are not as tolerant as other facultative vertebrate anaerobes (e.g. turtle, goldfish) of prolonged periods of complete O2 lack. Many overwintering amphibians do, however, tolerate prolonged bouts of severe hypoxia, relying exclusively on cutaneous gas exchange. Rana temporaria overwintering for 2 months in hypoxic water (PO2 approximately 25 mmHg) at 3 degrees C progressively reduce their blood PCO2 to levels characteristic of water-breathing fish. The result is that blood pH rises and presumably facilitates transcutaneous O2 transfer by increasing Hb O2-affinity. Even after months of severe hypoxia, there is no substantial build-up of lactate as the animals continue to rely on cutaneous gas exchange to satisfy the requirements of a suppressed aerobic metabolism. Our recent experiments have shown that the skeletal muscle of frogs oxyconforms in vitro to the amount of O2 available. The cellular basis for the oxyconformation of skeletal muscle is unknown, but the hypothesis driving our continuing experiments theories that metabolic suppression at a cellular level is synonymous with suppressed ion leak across cellular membranes.

  20. Amphibians of Olympic National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    ,

    2000-01-01

    Amphibians evolved from fishes about 360 million years ago and were the first vertebrates adapted to life on land. The word amphibian means "double life." It refers to the life history of many amphibians, which spend part of their life in water and part on land. There are three major groups of amphibians: salamanders, frogs, and toads, and caecilians. Salamanders, frogs, and toads can be found in Olympic National Park (ONP), but caecilians live only in tropical regions. Many amphibians are generalist predators, eating almost any prey they can fit into their mouths.

  1. Rainforest: Reptiles and Amphibians

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Olson, Susanna

    2006-01-01

    Rainforest reptiles and amphibians are a vibrantly colored, multimedia art experience. To complete the entire project one may need to dedicate many class periods to production, yet in each aspect of the project a new and important skill, concept, or element is being taught or reinforced. This project incorporates the study of warm and cool color…

  2. Rainforest: Reptiles and Amphibians

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Olson, Susanna

    2006-01-01

    Rainforest reptiles and amphibians are a vibrantly colored, multimedia art experience. To complete the entire project one may need to dedicate many class periods to production, yet in each aspect of the project a new and important skill, concept, or element is being taught or reinforced. This project incorporates the study of warm and cool color…

  3. Mapping amphibian disease patterns

    Treesearch

    Noreen Parks

    2013-01-01

    Over the past two decades the worldwide emergence of the fungal pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), which causes chytridiomycosis, has drastically impacted populations of frogs, toads, and salamanders. Currently, as much as 40% of the roughly 6300 known amphibian species are deemed imperiled, and chytridiomycosis is...

  4. Amphibian development in microgravity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Souza, K. A.

    1987-01-01

    The results of experiments performed by the U.S. Biosatellites 1 and 2 and the Gemini VIII and XII missions and by the Soviet Salyut and Soyuz missions on the effect of gravity on the development of prefertilized amphibian egg and, in particular, of the vestibular system of amphibian embryo are described. In these experiments, the condition of microgravity was reached only after the prefertilized eggs were in the early stages of first cell division or in the blastula stage. No significant changes were observed in the morphology of the embryos or in the vestibular system of embyos developed, respectively, for 2-5 days or 20 days under conditions of microgravity. Experiments planned for future spaceflights are discussed.

  5. Field Surveys of Amphibian Populations.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brodman, Robert

    2000-01-01

    Describes a course on amphibian research for environmental science majors. Involves students in field studies and introduces them to investigative research. Evaluates the course. (Contains 19 references.) (YDS)

  6. Field Surveys of Amphibian Populations.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brodman, Robert

    2000-01-01

    Describes a course on amphibian research for environmental science majors. Involves students in field studies and introduces them to investigative research. Evaluates the course. (Contains 19 references.) (YDS)

  7. [Jaws of amphibians and reptiles].

    PubMed

    Tanimoto, Masahiro

    2005-04-01

    Big jaws of amphibians and reptiles are mainly treated in this article. In amphibians enlarged skulls are for the big jaw in contrast with human's skulls for the brain. For example, famous fossils of Homo diluvii testis are ones of salamanders in fact. In reptiles, mosasaur jaws and teeth and their ecology are introduced for instance.

  8. Chemosignals, hormones, and amphibian reproduction.

    PubMed

    Woodley, Sarah

    2015-02-01

    This article is part of a Special Issue "Chemosignals and Reproduction". Amphibians are often thought of as relatively simple animals especially when compared to mammals. Yet the chemosignaling systems used by amphibians are varied and complex. Amphibian chemosignals are particularly important in reproduction, in both aquatic and terrestrial environments. Chemosignaling is most evident in salamanders and newts, but increasing evidence indicates that chemical communication facilitates reproduction in frogs and toads as well. Reproductive hormones shape the production, dissemination, detection, and responsiveness to chemosignals. A large variety of chemosignals have been identified, ranging from simple, invariant chemosignals to complex, variable blends of chemosignals. Although some chemosignals elicit straightforward responses, others have relatively subtle effects. Review of amphibian chemosignaling reveals a number of issues to be resolved, including: 1) the significance of the complex, individually variable blends of courtship chemosignals found in some salamanders, 2) the behavioral and/or physiological functions of chemosignals found in anuran "breeding glands", 3) the ligands for amphibian V2Rs, especially V2Rs expressed in the main olfactory epithelium, and 4) the mechanism whereby transdermal delivery of chemosignals influences behavior. To date, only a handful of the more than 7000 species of amphibians has been examined. Further study of amphibians should provide additional insight to the role of chemosignals in reproduction.

  9. Medicine and surgery of amphibians.

    PubMed

    Gentz, Edward J

    2007-01-01

    Amphibians are most notably characterized by their glandular skin, which they shed regularly and ingest routinely. It is advisable to handle amphibians only with protective gloves to avoid damaging their skin. These animals absorb water readily across the skin as a means of maintaining hydration. They also easily absorb drugs and anesthetics that are applied directly to the skin. Investigators commonly utilize cutaneous respiration in amphibians and evaluate skin abnormalities via wet mount preparations, skin scrapes, and biopsy. The examination of blood samples can be useful in evaluating the status of ill amphibians, although the similarity in function of amphibian blood cell types and those of other species is largely unknown. If surgery is required, it is necessary to fast the animals before surgery, and to monitor their hydration. The wet environment required for amphibian surgery makes sterile technique challenging, and it is advisable to institute prophylactic antibiotic therapy before the procedure. The anesthetic of choice for amphibian surgery is tricaine methanesulfonate (MS-222). Postoperative recommendations include fluids, nutritional support if necessary, and analgesia. If euthanasia is required, MS-222 overdose or pentobarbital injection are the preferred methods.

  10. DNA barcoding amphibians and reptiles.

    PubMed

    Vences, Miguel; Nagy, Zoltán T; Sonet, Gontran; Verheyen, Erik

    2012-01-01

    Only a few major research programs are currently targeting COI barcoding of amphibians and reptiles (including chelonians and crocodiles), two major groups of tetrapods. Amphibian and reptile species are typically old, strongly divergent, and contain deep conspecific lineages which might lead to problems in species assignment with incomplete reference databases. As far as known, there is no single pair of COI primers that will guarantee a sufficient rate of success across all amphibian and reptile taxa, or within major subclades of amphibians and reptiles, which means that the PCR amplification strategy needs to be adjusted depending on the specific research question. In general, many more amphibian and reptile taxa have been sequenced for 16S rDNA, which for some purposes may be a suitable complementary marker, at least until a more comprehensive COI reference database becomes available. DNA barcoding has successfully been used to identify amphibian larval stages (tadpoles) in species-rich tropical assemblages. Tissue sampling, DNA extraction, and amplification of COI is straightforward in amphibians and reptiles. Single primer pairs are likely to have a failure rate between 5 and 50% if taxa of a wide taxonomic range are targeted; in such cases the use of primer cocktails or subsequent hierarchical usage of different primer pairs is necessary. If the target group is taxonomically limited, many studies have followed a strategy of designing specific primers which then allow an easy and reliable amplification of all samples.

  11. Alternative Conceptions in Animal Classification Focusing on Amphibians and Reptiles: A Cross-Age Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yen, Chiung-Fen; Yao, Tsung-Wei; Chiu, Yu-Chih

    2004-01-01

    This study examined students' alternative conceptions of reptiles and amphibians and the extent to which these conceptions remain intact through the elementary (grades 4 and 6), junior, and senior high school years. We administered multiple-choice and free-response instruments to a total of 513 students and interviewed at least 20 students at each…

  12. Alternative Conceptions in Animal Classification Focusing on Amphibians and Reptiles: A Cross-Age Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yen, Chiung-Fen; Yao, Tsung-Wei; Chiu, Yu-Chih

    2004-01-01

    This study examined students' alternative conceptions of reptiles and amphibians and the extent to which these conceptions remain intact through the elementary (grades 4 and 6), junior, and senior high school years. We administered multiple-choice and free-response instruments to a total of 513 students and interviewed at least 20 students at each…

  13. Carotid labyrinth of amphibians.

    PubMed

    Kusakabe, Tatsumi

    2002-11-01

    The amphibian carotid labyrinth is a characteristic maze-like vascular expansion at the bifurcation of the common carotid artery into the internal and external carotid arteries. The carotid labyrinths of anurans are spherical and those of urodeles are oblong. In the intervascular stroma of both anuran and urodelan carotid labyrinths, the glomus cells (type I cells, chief cells) are distributed singly or in clusters between connective tissue cells and smooth muscle cells. In fluorescence histochemistry, the glomus cells emit intense fluorescence for biogenic monoamines. In fine structure, the glomus cells are characterized by a number of dense-cored vesicles in their cytoplasm. The glomus cells have long, thin cytoplasmic processes, some of which are closely associated with smooth muscle cells, endothelial cells, and pericytes. Afferent, efferent, and reciprocal synapses are found on the glomus cells. The morphogenesis of the carotid labyrinth starts in the larvae at the point where the carotid arch descends to the internal gills. Through the early stages of larval development, the slightly expanded region of the external carotid artery becomes closely connected with the carotid arch. By the end of the foot stage, the expanded region becomes globular, and at the final stage of metamorphosis the carotid labyrinth is close to its adult form. In fine structure, the glomus cells appear as early as the initial stage of larval development. At the middle stages of development, the number of dense-cored vesicles increases remarkably. Distinct afferent synapses are found in juveniles, although efferent synapses can be seen during metamorphosis. The carotid labyrinth is innervated by nerve fibers containing several kinds of regulatory neuropeptides. Double-immunolabeling in combination with a multiple dye filter system demonstrates the coexistence of two different neuropeptides. The amphibian carotid labyrinth has been electrophysiologically confirmed to have arterial chemo

  14. STUDIES ON AMPHIBIAN YOLK

    PubMed Central

    Karasaki, Shuichi

    1963-01-01

    The yolk platelets of mature eggs and young embryonic cells of all amphibian species studied (Rana pipiens, Triturus pyrrhogaster, Diemictylus viridescens, Rana nigromaculata, and Bufo vulgaris) have a superficial layer of fine particles or fibrils (ca. 50 A in diameter), a central main body with a crystalline lattice structure, and an enclosing membrane approximately 70 A in thickness. Electron micrographs of the main body reveal hexagonal net (spacing ca. 70 A), square net (spacing ca. 80 A), and parallel band (spacing from 35 to 100 A but most frequent at ca. 70 A) patterns. The crystalline structure is believed to be a simple hexagonal lattice made of closely packed cylindrical rods. Each rod is estimated to be about 80 A in diameter and 160 A in length. PMID:13962448

  15. Reptiles and amphibians

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lovich, Jeffrey E.; Ennen, Joshua R.; Perrow, Martin

    2017-01-01

    Summary – We reviewed all the peer-reviewed scientific publications we could find on the known and potential effects of wind farm development, operation, maintenance, and decommissioning on reptiles and amphibians (collectively herpetofauna) worldwide. Both groups are declining globally due to a multitude of threats including energy development. Effect studies were limited to the long-term research by the authors on Agassiz’s Desert Tortoise ecology and behavior at single operational wind farm in California, US and an analysis of the effects of wind farm installation on species richness of vertebrates including reptiles and amphibians in northwestern Portugal. Research on Agassiz’s Desert Tortoise found few demonstrable differences in biological parameters between populations in the wind farm and those in more natural habitats. High reproductive output is due to the regional climate and not to the presence or operation of the wind farm. Site operations have resulted in death and injury to a small number of adult tortoises and over the long-term tortoises now appear to avoid the areas of greatest turbine concentration. Research in Portugal using models and simulations based on empirical data show that vertebrate species richness (including herpetofauna) decreased by almost 20% after the installation of only two large monopole turbines per 250 x 250 m plot. Knowledge of the known responses of herpetofauna to various disturbances allows identification of potential impacts from construction material acquisition in offsite areas, mortality and stress due to impacts of roads and related infrastructure, destruction and modification of habitat, habitat fragmentation and barriers to gene flow, noise, vibration, electromagnetic field generation, heat from buried high voltage transmission lines, alteration of local and regional climate, predator attraction, and increased risk of fire. Research on herpetofauna lags far behind what is needed and, in particular, before

  16. Polarity of the Amphibian Egg

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Malacinski, G. M.

    1983-01-01

    Amphibian egg polarity and the mechanism which generates the polarity is addressed. Of particular concern is the question of whether the activation rotation which responds to gravity is a prerequisite for normal development.

  17. Mitigating amphibian chytridiomycosis in nature

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Garner, Trenton W. J.; Schmidt, Benedikt R.; Martel, An; Pasmans, Frank; Muths, Erin L.; Cunningham, Andrew A.; Weldon, Che; Fisher, Matthew C.; Bosch, Jaime

    2016-01-01

    Amphibians across the planet face the threat of population decline and extirpation caused by the disease chytridiomycosis. Despite consensus that the fungal pathogens responsible for the disease are conservation issues, strategies to mitigate their impacts in the natural world are, at best, nascent. Reducing risk associated with the movement of amphibians, non-amphibian vectors and other sources of infection remains the first line of defence and a primary objective when mitigating the threat of disease in wildlife. Amphibian-associated chytridiomycete fungi and chytridiomycosis are already widespread, though, and we therefore focus on discussing options for mitigating the threats once disease emergence has occurred in wild amphibian populations. All strategies have shortcomings that need to be overcome before implementation, including stronger efforts towards understanding and addressing ethical and legal considerations. Even if these issues can be dealt with, all currently available approaches, or those under discussion, are unlikely to yield the desired conservation outcome of disease mitigation. The decision process for establishing mitigation strategies requires integrated thinking that assesses disease mitigation options critically and embeds them within more comprehensive strategies for the conservation of amphibian populations, communities and ecosystems.

  18. Mitigating amphibian chytridiomycoses in nature.

    PubMed

    Garner, Trenton W J; Schmidt, Benedikt R; Martel, An; Pasmans, Frank; Muths, Erin; Cunningham, Andrew A; Weldon, Che; Fisher, Matthew C; Bosch, Jaime

    2016-12-05

    Amphibians across the planet face the threat of population decline and extirpation caused by the disease chytridiomycosis. Despite consensus that the fungal pathogens responsible for the disease are conservation issues, strategies to mitigate their impacts in the natural world are, at best, nascent. Reducing risk associated with the movement of amphibians, non-amphibian vectors and other sources of infection remains the first line of defence and a primary objective when mitigating the threat of disease in wildlife. Amphibian-associated chytridiomycete fungi and chytridiomycosis are already widespread, though, and we therefore focus on discussing options for mitigating the threats once disease emergence has occurred in wild amphibian populations. All strategies have shortcomings that need to be overcome before implementation, including stronger efforts towards understanding and addressing ethical and legal considerations. Even if these issues can be dealt with, all currently available approaches, or those under discussion, are unlikely to yield the desired conservation outcome of disease mitigation. The decision process for establishing mitigation strategies requires integrated thinking that assesses disease mitigation options critically and embeds them within more comprehensive strategies for the conservation of amphibian populations, communities and ecosystems.This article is part of the themed issue 'Tackling emerging fungal threats to animal health, food security and ecosystem resilience'. © 2016 The Author(s).

  19. North American amphibians: distribution and diversity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    : Green, David M.; Weir, Linda A.; Casper, Gary S.; Lannoo, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Some 300 species of amphibians inhabit North America. The past two decades have seen an enormous growth in interest about amphibians and an increased intensity of scientific research into their fascinating biology and continent-wide distribution. This atlas presents the spectacular diversity of North American amphibians in a geographic context. It covers all formally recognized amphibian species found in the United States and Canada, many of which are endangered or threatened with extinction. Illustrated with maps and photos, the species accounts provide current information about distribution, habitat, and conservation. Researchers, professional herpetologists, and anyone intrigued by amphibians will value North American Amphibians as a guide and reference.

  20. Understanding Amphibian Declines Through Geographic Approaches

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gallant, Alisa

    2006-01-01

    Growing concern over worldwide amphibian declines warrants serious examination. Amphibians are important to the proper functioning of ecosystems and provide many direct benefits to humans in the form of pest and disease control, pharmaceutical compounds, and even food. Amphibians have permeable skin and rely on both aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems during different seasons and stages of their lives. Their association with these ecosystems renders them likely to serve as sensitive indicators of environmental change. While much research on amphibian declines has centered on mysterious causes, or on causes that directly affect humans (global warming, chemical pollution, ultraviolet-B radiation), most declines are the result of habitat loss and habitat alteration. Improving our ability to characterize, model, and monitor the interactions between environmental variables and amphibian habitats is key to addressing amphibian conservation. In 2000, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) initiated the Amphibian Research and Monitoring Initiative (ARMI) to address issues surrounding amphibian declines.

  1. Cryptosporidium in birds, fish and amphibians.

    PubMed

    Ryan, Una

    2010-01-01

    Whilst considerable information is available for avian cryptosporidiosis, scant information is available for Cryptosporidium infections in fish and amphibians. The present review details recent studies in avian cryptosporidiosis and our current knowledge of piscine and amphibian infections.

  2. Clinical pathology of amphibians: a review.

    PubMed

    Forzán, María J; Heatley, Jill; Russell, Karen E; Horney, Barbara

    2017-03-01

    Amphibian declines and extinctions have worsened in the last 2 decades. Partly because one of the main causes of the declines is infectious disease, veterinary professionals have increasingly become involved in amphibian research, captive husbandry, and management. Health evaluation of amphibians, free-living or captive, can benefit from employing the tools of clinical pathology, something that is commonly used in veterinary medicine of other vertebrates. The present review compiles what is known of amphibian clinical pathology emphasizing knowledge that may assist with the interpretation of laboratory results, provides diagnostic recommendations for common amphibian diseases, and includes RIs for a few amphibian species estimated based on peer-reviewed studies. We hope to encourage the incorporation of clinical pathology in amphibian practice and research, and to highlight the importance of applying veterinary medicine principles in furthering our knowledge of amphibian pathophysiology. © 2017 American Society for Veterinary Clinical Pathology.

  3. Reptiles and amphibians as laboratory animals.

    PubMed

    O'Rourke, Dorcas P

    2002-06-01

    Although reptiles and amphibians have long been used in biomedical research, few in the arena understand their health and husbandry needs. The author provides an introduction to the successful maintenance of reptiles and amphibians in the laboratory environment.

  4. BIOTIC FACTORS IN AMPHIBIAN POPULATION DECLINES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Amphibians evolved in, and continue to exist in, habitats that are replete with many other organisms. Some of these organisms serve as prey for amphibians and others interact with amphibians as predators, competitors, pathogens, or symbionts. Still other organisms in their enviro...

  5. BIOTIC FACTORS IN AMPHIBIAN POPULATION DECLINES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Amphibians evolved in, and continue to exist in, habitats that are replete with many other organisms. Some of these organisms serve as prey for amphibians and others interact with amphibians as predators, competitors, pathogens, or symbionts. Still other organisms in their enviro...

  6. Sleuthing out a silent scourge for amphibians

    Treesearch

    Noreen Parks; Deanna (Dede) Olson

    2013-01-01

    The amphibian chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), causes the infectious disease chytridiomycosis, which has triggered massive die-offs and extinctions of amphibians around the world. The disease, identified in 1998, is a significant contributor to the global amphibian biodiversity crisis, and no clear means of arresting its spread...

  7. Agricultural ponds support amphibian populations

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Knutson, M.G.; Richardson, W.B.; Reineke, D.M.; Gray, B.R.; Parmelee, J.R.; Weick, S.E.

    2004-01-01

    In some agricultural regions, natural wetlands are scarce, and constructed agricultural ponds may represent important alternative breeding habitats for amphibians. Properly managed, these agricultural ponds may effectively increase the total amount of breeding habitat and help to sustain populations. We studied small, constructed agricultural ponds in southeastern Minnesota to assess their value as amphibian breeding sites. Our study examined habitat factors associated with amphibian reproduction at two spatial scales: the pond and the landscape surrounding the pond. We found that small agricultural ponds in southeastern Minnesota provided breeding habitat for at least 10 species of amphibians. Species richness and multispecies reproductive success were more closely associated with characteristics of the pond (water quality, vegetation, and predators) compared with characteristics of the surrounding landscape, but individual species were associated with both pond and landscape variables. Ponds surrounded by row crops had similar species richness and reproductive success compared with natural wetlands and ponds surrounded by nongrazed pasture. Ponds used for watering livestock had elevated concentrations of phosphorus, higher turbidity, and a trend toward reduced amphibian reproductive success. Species richness was highest in small ponds, ponds with lower total nitrogen concentrations, tiger salamanders (Ambystoma tigrinum) present, and lacking fish. Multispecies reproductive success was best in ponds with lower total nitrogen concentrations, less emergent vegetation, and lacking fish. Habitat factors associated with higher reproductive success varied among individual species. We conclude that small, constructed farm ponds, properly managed, may help sustain amphibian populations in landscapes where natural wetland habitat is rare. We recommend management actions such as limiting livestock access to the pond to improve water quality, reducing nitrogen input, and

  8. Skeletal Scintigraphy.

    PubMed

    Montilla-Soler, Jaime L; Makanji, Rikesh

    2017-04-01

    Skeletal scintigraphy remains a valuable tool in the initial and subsequent evaluation of the skeletal system in patients with a diagnosis of primary or metastatic neoplasms. We discuss radiopharmaceuticals, nuclear medicine imaging techniques, and current as well as future oncological applications in the adult population. Pertinent literature was reviewed to describe the advantages and limitations of available technologies for the evaluation of skeletal metastatic disease. Evaluation of primary and metastatic skeletal disease using nuclear medicine and positron emission tomography techniques is discussed. Skeletal scintigraphy provides valuable information in the initial evaluation for the presence of osteoblastic skeletal metastases. Incremental advances on available radiopharmaceuticals (fludeoxyglucose F 18, sodium fluoride F 18), coupled with advances in imaging techniques and imaging devices (single photon emission computed tomography/computed tomography, positron emission tomography/computed tomography, positron emission tomography/magnetic resonance imaging), have had a significant impact on sensitivity, specificity, and accuracy rates for the detection of skeletal metastases. Skeletal scintigraphy has a significant role in the initial diagnosis, staging, restaging, and treatment monitoring of patients with cancer and primary skeletal or metastatic disease. The coupling of diagnostic and therapeutic nuclear medicine agents in the setting of osteoblastic skeletal metastases is a valuable tool for the treatment for certain cancer types, including prostate cancer, and may become more widely used to treat other histologies as more data on other tumor types (eg, breast cancer, osteosarcoma) become available.

  9. Ecopathology of ranaviruses infecting amphibians.

    PubMed

    Miller, Debra; Gray, Matthew; Storfer, Andrew

    2011-11-01

    Ranaviruses are capable of infecting amphibians from at least 14 families and over 70 individual species. Ranaviruses infect multiple cell types, often culminating in organ necrosis and massive hemorrhaging. Subclinical infections have been documented, although their role in ranavirus persistence and emergence remains unclear. Water is an effective transmission medium for ranaviruses, and survival outside the host may be for significant duration. In aquatic communities, amphibians, reptiles and fish may serve as reservoirs. Controlled studies have shown that susceptibility to ranavirus infection and disease varies among amphibian species and developmental stages, and likely is impacted by host-pathogen coevolution, as well as, exogenous environmental factors. Field studies have demonstrated that the likelihood of epizootics is increased in areas of cattle grazing, where aquatic vegetation is sparse and water quality is poor. Translocation of infected amphibians through commercial trade (e.g., food, fish bait, pet industry) contributes to the spread of ranaviruses. Such introductions may be of particular concern, as several studies report that ranaviruses isolated from ranaculture, aquaculture, and bait facilities have greater virulence (i.e., ability to cause disease) than wild-type isolates. Future investigations should focus on the genetic basis for pathogen virulence and host susceptibility, ecological and anthropogenic mechanisms contributing to emergence, and vaccine development for use in captive populations and species reintroduction programs.

  10. Ecotoxicology of Amphibians and Reptiles

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    2000-01-01

    For many years, ecological research on amphibians and reptiles has lagged behind that of other vertebrates such as fishes, birds, and mammals, despite the known importance of these animals in their environments. The lack of study has been particularly acute in the he area of ecotoxicology where the number of published scientific papers is a fraction of that found for the other vertebrate classes. Recently, scientists have become aware of severe crises among amphibian populations, including unexplained and sudden extinctions, worldwide declines, and hideous malformations. In many of these instances, contaminants have been listed as probable contributors. Data on the effects of contaminants on reptiles are so depauperate that even the most elementary interpretations are difficult. This state-of-the-science review and synthesis of amphibian and reptile ecotoxicology demonstrates the inter-relationships among distribution, ecology, physiology, and contaminant exposure, and interprets these topics as they pertain to comparative toxicity, population declines, malformations, and risk assessment . In this way, the book identifies and serves as a basis for the most pressing research needs in the coming years. The editors have invited 27 other internationally respected experts to examine the state of existing data in specific areas, interpret it in light of current problems, and identify research gaps and needs. Through its emphasis on recent research, extensive reviews and synthesis, Ecotoxicology of Amphibians and Reptiles will remain a definitive reference work well into the new century.

  11. Small Mammals, Reptiles, and Amphibians

    Treesearch

    Bryce Rickel

    2005-01-01

    This chapter focuses on small mammals, reptiles, and amphibians that inhabit the grasslands within the Southwestern Region of the USDA Forest Service. The chapter is not intended to be an all inclusive list of species, but rather to address the species that play important roles in grassland ecosystems and that often are associated with the management of grasslands....

  12. The Metamorphosis of Amphibian Toxicogenomics

    PubMed Central

    Helbing, Caren C.

    2012-01-01

    Amphibians are important vertebrates in toxicology often representing both aquatic and terrestrial forms within the life history of the same species. Of the thousands of species, only two have substantial genomics resources: the recently published genome of the Pipid, Xenopus (Silurana) tropicalis, and transcript information (and ongoing genome sequencing project) of Xenopus laevis. However, many more species representative of regional ecological niches and life strategies are used in toxicology worldwide. Since Xenopus species diverged from the most populous frog family, the Ranidae, ~200 million years ago, there are notable differences between them and the even more distant Caudates (salamanders) and Caecilians. These differences include genome size, gene composition, and extent of polyploidization. Application of toxicogenomics to amphibians requires the mobilization of resources and expertise to develop de novo sequence assemblies and analysis strategies for a broader range of amphibian species. The present mini-review will present the advances in toxicogenomics as pertains to amphibians with particular emphasis upon the development and use of genomic techniques (inclusive of transcriptomics, proteomics, and metabolomics) and the challenges inherent therein. PMID:22435070

  13. Multiple overseas dispersal in amphibians.

    PubMed

    Vences, Miguel; Vieites, David R; Glaw, Frank; Brinkmann, Henner; Kosuch, Joachim; Veith, Michael; Meyer, Axel

    2003-12-07

    Amphibians are thought to be unable to disperse over ocean barriers because they do not tolerate the osmotic stress of salt water. Their distribution patterns have therefore generally been explained by vicariance biogeography. Here, we present compelling evidence for overseas dispersal of frogs in the Indian Ocean region based on the discovery of two endemic species on Mayotte. This island belongs to the Comoro archipelago, which is entirely volcanic and surrounded by sea depths of more than 3500 m. This constitutes the first observation of endemic amphibians on oceanic islands that did not have any past physical contact to other land masses. The two species of frogs had previously been thought to be nonendemic and introduced from Madagascar, but clearly represent new species based on their morphological and genetic differentiation. They belong to the genera Mantidactylus and Boophis in the family Mantellidae that is otherwise restricted to Madagascar, and are distinguished by morphology and mitochondrial and nuclear DNA sequences from mantellid species occurring in Madagascar. This discovery permits us to update and test molecular clocks for frogs distributed in this region. The new calibrations are in agreement with previous rate estimates and indicate two further Cenozoic transmarine dispersal events that had previously been interpreted as vicariance: hyperoliid frogs from Africa to Madagascar (Heterixalus) and from Madagascar to the Seychelles islands (Tachycnemis). Our results provide the strongest evidence so far that overseas dispersal of amphibians exists and is no rare exception, although vicariance certainly retains much of its importance in explaining amphibian biogeography.

  14. The metamorphosis of amphibian toxicogenomics.

    PubMed

    Helbing, Caren C

    2012-01-01

    Amphibians are important vertebrates in toxicology often representing both aquatic and terrestrial forms within the life history of the same species. Of the thousands of species, only two have substantial genomics resources: the recently published genome of the Pipid, Xenopus (Silurana) tropicalis, and transcript information (and ongoing genome sequencing project) of Xenopus laevis. However, many more species representative of regional ecological niches and life strategies are used in toxicology worldwide. Since Xenopus species diverged from the most populous frog family, the Ranidae, ~200 million years ago, there are notable differences between them and the even more distant Caudates (salamanders) and Caecilians. These differences include genome size, gene composition, and extent of polyploidization. Application of toxicogenomics to amphibians requires the mobilization of resources and expertise to develop de novo sequence assemblies and analysis strategies for a broader range of amphibian species. The present mini-review will present the advances in toxicogenomics as pertains to amphibians with particular emphasis upon the development and use of genomic techniques (inclusive of transcriptomics, proteomics, and metabolomics) and the challenges inherent therein.

  15. Ecopathology of Ranaviruses Infecting Amphibians

    PubMed Central

    Miller, Debra; Gray, Matthew; Storfer, Andrew

    2011-01-01

    Ranaviruses are capable of infecting amphibians from at least 14 families and over 70 individual species. Ranaviruses infect multiple cell types, often culminating in organ necrosis and massive hemorrhaging. Subclinical infections have been documented, although their role in ranavirus persistence and emergence remains unclear. Water is an effective transmission medium for ranaviruses, and survival outside the host may be for significant duration. In aquatic communities, amphibians, reptiles and fish may serve as reservoirs. Controlled studies have shown that susceptibility to ranavirus infection and disease varies among amphibian species and developmental stages, and likely is impacted by host-pathogen coevolution, as well as, exogenous environmental factors. Field studies have demonstrated that the likelihood of epizootics is increased in areas of cattle grazing, where aquatic vegetation is sparse and water quality is poor. Translocation of infected amphibians through commercial trade (e.g., food, fish bait, pet industry) contributes to the spread of ranaviruses. Such introductions may be of particular concern, as several studies report that ranaviruses isolated from ranaculture, aquaculture, and bait facilities have greater virulence (i.e., ability to cause disease) than wild-type isolates. Future investigations should focus on the genetic basis for pathogen virulence and host susceptibility, ecological and anthropogenic mechanisms contributing to emergence, and vaccine development for use in captive populations and species reintroduction programs. PMID:22163349

  16. Multiple overseas dispersal in amphibians.

    PubMed Central

    Vences, Miguel; Vieites, David R; Glaw, Frank; Brinkmann, Henner; Kosuch, Joachim; Veith, Michael; Meyer, Axel

    2003-01-01

    Amphibians are thought to be unable to disperse over ocean barriers because they do not tolerate the osmotic stress of salt water. Their distribution patterns have therefore generally been explained by vicariance biogeography. Here, we present compelling evidence for overseas dispersal of frogs in the Indian Ocean region based on the discovery of two endemic species on Mayotte. This island belongs to the Comoro archipelago, which is entirely volcanic and surrounded by sea depths of more than 3500 m. This constitutes the first observation of endemic amphibians on oceanic islands that did not have any past physical contact to other land masses. The two species of frogs had previously been thought to be nonendemic and introduced from Madagascar, but clearly represent new species based on their morphological and genetic differentiation. They belong to the genera Mantidactylus and Boophis in the family Mantellidae that is otherwise restricted to Madagascar, and are distinguished by morphology and mitochondrial and nuclear DNA sequences from mantellid species occurring in Madagascar. This discovery permits us to update and test molecular clocks for frogs distributed in this region. The new calibrations are in agreement with previous rate estimates and indicate two further Cenozoic transmarine dispersal events that had previously been interpreted as vicariance: hyperoliid frogs from Africa to Madagascar (Heterixalus) and from Madagascar to the Seychelles islands (Tachycnemis). Our results provide the strongest evidence so far that overseas dispersal of amphibians exists and is no rare exception, although vicariance certainly retains much of its importance in explaining amphibian biogeography. PMID:14667332

  17. Response of reptile and amphibian communities to canopy gaps created by wind disturbance in the Southern Appalachians

    Treesearch

    Cathryn H. Greenberg

    2001-01-01

    Reptile and amphibian communities were sampled in intact gaps created by wind disturbance, salvage-logged gaps, and closed canopy mature forest (controls). Sampling was conducted during June–October in 1997 and 1998 using drift fences with pitfall and funnel traps. Basal area of live trees, shade, leaf litter coverage, and litter depth was highest in controls and...

  18. Neotropical Amphibian Declines Affect Stream Ecosystem Properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Connelly, S.; Pringle, C. M.; Bixby, R. J.; Whiles, M. R.; Lips, K. R.; Brenes, R.; Colon-Gaud, J. C.; Kilham, S.; Hunte-Brown, M.

    2005-05-01

    Global declines of amphibians are well documented, yet effects of these dramatic losses on ecosystem structure and function are poorly understood. As part of a larger collaborative project, we compared two upland Panamanian streams. Both streams are biologically and geologically similar; however, one stream (Fortuna) has recently experienced almost complete extirpation of stream-dwelling frogs, while the other (Cope) still has intact populations. We experimentally excluded tadpoles from localized areas in each stream. We then compared chlorophyll a, algal community composition, ash-free dry mass (AFDM), inorganic matter, and insect assemblages in control and exclusion areas. Additionally, we sampled the natural substrate of both streams monthly for chlorophyll a, algal community composition, AFDM, and inorganic matter. At Cope, chlorophyll a, AFDM, and inorganic matter were greater in areas where tadpoles were excluded than in their presence. Numbers of dominant algal species (e.g., Nupela praecipua and Eunotia siolii) were greater in the exclusion versus control treatments. Monthly sampling of natural substrate indicated higher chlorophyll a and AFDM at Cope compared to Fortuna. Our data suggest that stream-dwelling anuran larvae have significant impacts on algal communities. These results also have implications for predicting the relevance of short-term experimental manipulations to long-term, whole-stream processes.

  19. Amphibians as models for studying environmental change.

    PubMed

    Hopkins, William A

    2007-01-01

    The use of amphibians as models in ecological research has a rich history. From an early foundation in studies of amphibian natural history sprang generations of scientists who used amphibians as models to address fundamental questions in population and community ecology. More recently, in the wake of an environment that human disturbances rapidly altered, ecologists have adopted amphibians as models for studying applied ecological issues such as habitat loss, pollution, disease, and global climate change. Some of the characteristics of amphibians that make them useful models for studying these environmental problems are highlighted, including their trophic importance, environmental sensitivity, research tractability, and impending extinction. The article provides specific examples from the recent literature to illustrate how studies on amphibians have been instrumental in guiding scientific thought on a broad scale. Included are examples of how amphibian research has transformed scientific disciplines, generated new theories about global health, called into question widely accepted scientific paradigms, and raised awareness in the general public that our daily actions may have widespread repercussions. In addition, studies on amphibian declines have provided insight into the complexity in which multiple independent factors may interact with one another to produce catastrophic and sometimes unpredictable effects. Because of the complexity of these problems, amphibian ecologists have been among the strongest advocates for interdisciplinary research. Future studies of amphibians will be important not only for their conservation but also for the conservation of other species, critical habitats, and entire ecosystems.

  20. Coaxial atomizer liquid intact lengths

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Eroglu, Hasan; Chigier, Norman; Farago, Zoltan

    1991-01-01

    Average intact lengths of round liquid jets generated by airblast coaxial atomizer were measured from over 1500 photographs. The intact lengths were studied over a jet Reynolds number range of 18,000 and Weber number range of 260. Results are presented for two different nozzle geometries. The intact lengths were found to be strongly dependent on Re and We numbers. An empirical equation was derived as a function of these parameters. A comparison of the intact lengths for round jets and flat sheets shows that round jets generate shorter intact lengths.

  1. (Photosynthesis in intact plants)

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1990-01-01

    Progress in the two years since the last renewal application has been excellent. We have made substantial contributions on both main fronts of the projects, and are particularly happy with the progress of our research on intact plants. The approach of basing our field work on a sound foundation of laboratory studies has enabled is to use methods which provide unambiguous assays of well characterized reactions. We have also made excellent progress in several laboratory studies which will have direct applications in future field work, and have introduced to the laboratory a range of molecular genetics techniques which will allow us to explore new options in the attempt to understand function at the level of molecular structure.

  2. Female Sexual Arousal in Amphibians

    PubMed Central

    Wilczynski, Walter; Lynch, Kathleen S.

    2010-01-01

    Rather than being a static, species specific trait, reproductive behavior in female amphibians is variable within an individual during the breeding season when females are capable of reproductive activity. Changes in receptivity coincide with changes in circulating estrogen. Estrogen is highest at the point when females are ready to choose a male and lay eggs. At this time female receptivity (her probability of responding to a male vocal signal) is highest and her selectivity among conspecific calls (measured by her probability of responding to a degraded or otherwise usually unattractive male signal) is lowest. These changes occur even though females retain the ability to discriminate different acoustic characteristics of various conspecific calls. After releasing her eggs, female amphibians quickly become less receptive and more choosy in terms of their responses to male sexual advertisement signals. Male vocal signals stimulate both behavior and estrogen changes in amphibian females making mating more probable. The changes in female reproductive behavior are the same as those generally accepted as indicative of a change in female sexual arousal leading to copulation. They are situationally triggered, gated by interactions with males, and decline with the consummation of sexual reproduction with a chosen male. The changes can be triggered by either internal physiological state or by the presence of stimuli presented by males, and the same stimuli change both behavior and physiological (endocrine) state in such a way as to make acceptance of a male more likely. Thus amphibian females demonstrate many of the same general characteristics of changing female sexual state that in mammals indicate sexual arousal. PMID:20816968

  3. Female sexual arousal in amphibians.

    PubMed

    Wilczynski, Walter; Lynch, Kathleen S

    2011-05-01

    Rather than being a static, species specific trait, reproductive behavior in female amphibians is variable within an individual during the breeding season when females are capable of reproductive activity. Changes in receptivity coincide with changes in circulating estrogen. Estrogen is highest at the point when females are ready to choose a male and lay eggs. At this time female receptivity (her probability of responding to a male vocal signal) is highest and her selectivity among conspecific calls (measured by her probability of responding to a degraded or otherwise usually unattractive male signal) is lowest. These changes occur even though females retain the ability to discriminate different acoustic characteristics of various conspecific calls. After releasing her eggs, female amphibians quickly become less receptive and more choosy in terms of their responses to male sexual advertisement signals. Male vocal signals stimulate both behavior and estrogen changes in amphibian females making mating more probable. The changes in female reproductive behavior are the same as those generally accepted as indicative of a change in female sexual arousal leading to copulation. They are situationally triggered, gated by interactions with males, and decline with the consummation of sexual reproduction with a chosen male. The changes can be triggered by either internal physiological state or by the presence of stimuli presented by males, and the same stimuli change both behavior and physiological (endocrine) state in such a way as to make acceptance of a male more likely. Thus amphibian females demonstrate many of the same general characteristics of changing female sexual state that in mammals indicate sexual arousal. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Amphibian (Xenopus sp.) iodothyronine deiodinase ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    The U.S. EPA-MED amphibian thyroid group is currently screening chemicals for inhibition of human iodothyronine deiodinase activity as components of the thyroid system important in human development. Amphibians are a bellwether taxonomic group to gauge toxicity of chemicals in the environment. Amphibian thyroid function is not only important in development but also metamorphosis. Xenopus sp. have been used extensively as model organisms and are well characterized genetically. We propose to screen a list of chemicals (selected from the human DIO screening results) to test for inhibition of Xenopus deiodinases. Large quantities of the enzymes will be produced using an adenovirus system. Our preliminary results show that there may be catalytic differences between human and Xenopus deiodinases. The Twin Ports Early Career Scientists is a new group formed within the Duluth-Superior scientific community. This presentation will provide a basic introduction to my research and our mission at EPA, and help to establish networking and collaboration relationships across disciplines and institutions.

  5. Amphibian (Xenopus sp.) iodothyronine deiodinase ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    The U.S. EPA-MED amphibian thyroid group is currently screening chemicals for inhibition of human iodothyronine deiodinase activity as components of the thyroid system important in human development. Amphibians are a bellwether taxonomic group to gauge toxicity of chemicals in the environment. Amphibian thyroid function is not only important in development but also metamorphosis. Xenopus sp. have been used extensively as model organisms and are well characterized genetically. We propose to screen a list of chemicals (selected from the human DIO screening results) to test for inhibition of Xenopus deiodinases. Large quantities of the enzymes will be produced using an adenovirus system. Our preliminary results show that there may be catalytic differences between human and Xenopus deiodinases. The Twin Ports Early Career Scientists is a new group formed within the Duluth-Superior scientific community. This presentation will provide a basic introduction to my research and our mission at EPA, and help to establish networking and collaboration relationships across disciplines and institutions.

  6. Impending conservation crisis for Southeast Asian amphibians

    PubMed Central

    Rowley, Jodi; Brown, Rafe; Bain, Raoul; Kusrini, Mirza; Inger, Robert; Stuart, Bryan; Wogan, Guin; Thy, Neang; Chan-ard, Tanya; Trung, Cao Tien; Diesmos, Arvin; Iskandar, Djoko T.; Lau, Michael; Ming, Leong Tzi; Makchai, Sunchai; Truong, Nguyen Quang; Phimmachak, Somphouthone

    2010-01-01

    With an understudied amphibian fauna, the highest deforestation rate on the planet and high harvesting pressures, Southeast Asian amphibians are facing a conservation crisis. Owing to the overriding threat of habitat loss, the most critical conservation action required is the identification and strict protection of habitat assessed as having high amphibian species diversity and/or representing distinctive regional amphibian faunas. Long-term population monitoring, enhanced survey efforts, collection of basic biological and ecological information, continued taxonomic research and evaluation of the impact of commercial trade for food, medicine and pets are also needed. Strong involvement of regional stakeholders, students and professionals is essential to accomplish these actions. PMID:20007165

  7. Survey for the amphibian chytrid Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in Hong Kong in native amphibians and in the international amphibian trade.

    PubMed

    Rowley, Jodi J L; Chan, Simon Kin Fung; Tang, Wing Sze; Speare, Richard; Skerratt, Lee F; Alford, Ross A; Cheung, Ka Shing; Ho, Ching Yee; Campbell, Ruth

    2007-12-13

    Chytridiomycosis, caused by the pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, is responsible for many amphibian declines and has been identified in wild amphibian populations on all continents where they exist, except for Asia. In order to assess whether B. dendrobatidis is present on the native amphibians of Hong Kong, we sampled wild populations of Amolops hongkongensis, Paa exilispinosa, P. spinosa and Rana chloronota during 2005-2006. Amphibians infected with B. dendrobatidis have been found in the international trade, so we also examined the extent and nature of the amphibian trade in Hong Kong during 2005-2006, and assessed whether B. dendrobatidis was present in imported amphibians. All 274 individuals of 4 native amphibian species sampled tested negative for B. dendrobatidis, giving an upper 95% confidence limit for prevalence of 1.3%. Approximately 4.3 million amphibians of 45 species from 11 countries were imported into Hong Kong via air over 12 mo; we did not detect B. dendrobatidis on any of 137 imported amphibians sampled. As B. dendrobatidis generally occurs at greater than 5% prevalence in infected populations during favorable environmental conditions, native amphibians in Hong Kong appear free of B. dendrobatidis, and may be at severe risk of impact if it is introduced. Until it is established that the pathogen is present in Hong Kong, management strategies should focus on preventing it from being imported and decreasing the risk of it escaping into the wild amphibian populations if imported. Further research is needed to determine the status of B. dendrobatidis in Hong Kong with greater certainty.

  8. MRI of intact plants.

    PubMed

    Van As, Henk; Scheenen, Tom; Vergeldt, Frank J

    2009-01-01

    Nuclear magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a non-destructive and non-invasive technique that can be used to acquire two- or even three-dimensional images of intact plants. The information within the images can be manipulated and used to study the dynamics of plant water relations and water transport in the stem, e.g., as a function of environmental (stress) conditions. Non-spatially resolved portable NMR is becoming available to study leaf water content and distribution of water in different (sub-cellular) compartments. These parameters directly relate to stomatal water conductance, CO(2) uptake, and photosynthesis. MRI applied on plants is not a straight forward extension of the methods discussed for (bio)medical MRI. This educational review explains the basic physical principles of plant MRI, with a focus on the spatial resolution, factors that determine the spatial resolution, and its unique information for applications in plant water relations that directly relate to plant photosynthetic activity. © Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

  9. The physics of intact capture

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tsou, Peter; Griffiths, D. J.; Albee, A. L.

    1994-01-01

    The ability to capture projectiles intact at hypervelocities in underdense media open a new area of study in physics. Underdense material behaves markedly different than solid, liquid, or gas upon hypervelocity impact. This new phenomenon enables applications in science that would either not be possible or would be very costly by other means. This phenomenon has been fully demonstrated in the laboratory and validated in space. Even more interesting is the fact that this hypervelocity intact capture was accomplished passively. A better understanding of the physics of intact capture will lead to improvements in intact capture. A collection of physical observations of this phenomenon is presented here.

  10. The physics of intact capture

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tsou, Peter; Griffiths, D. J.; Albee, A. L.

    1994-01-01

    The ability to capture projectiles intact at hypervelocities in underdense media open a new area of study in physics. Underdense material behaves markedly different than solid, liquid, or gas upon hypervelocity impact. This new phenomenon enables applications in science that would either not be possible or would be very costly by other means. This phenomenon has been fully demonstrated in the laboratory and validated in space. Even more interesting is the fact that this hypervelocity intact capture was accomplished passively. A better understanding of the physics of intact capture will lead to improvements in intact capture. A collection of physical observations of this phenomenon is presented here.

  11. Amphibians at risk? Susceptibility of terrestrial amphibian life stages to pesticides.

    PubMed

    Brühl, Carsten A; Pieper, Silvia; Weber, Brigitte

    2011-11-01

    Current pesticide risk assessment does not specifically consider amphibians. Amphibians in the aquatic environment (aquatic life stages or postmetamorphic aquatic amphibians) and terrestrial living juvenile or adult amphibians are assumed to be covered by the risk assessment for aquatic invertebrates and fish, or mammals and birds, respectively. This procedure has been evaluated as being sufficiently protective regarding the acute risk posed by a number of pesticides to aquatic amphibian life stages (eggs, larvae). However, it is unknown whether the exposure and sensitivity of terrestrial living amphibians are comparable to mammalian and avian exposure and sensitivity. We reviewed the literature on dermal pesticide absorption and toxicity studies for terrestrial life stages of amphibians, focusing on the dermal exposure pathway, that is, through treated soil or direct overspray. In vitro studies demonstrated that cutaneous absorption of chemicals is significant and that chemical percutaneous passage, P (cm/h), is higher in amphibians than in mammals. In vivo, the rapid and substantial uptake of the herbicide atrazine from treated soil by toads (Bufo americanus) has been described. Severe toxic effects on various amphibian species have been reported for field-relevant application rates of different pesticides. In general, exposure and toxicity studies for terrestrial amphibian life stages are scarce, and the reported data indicate the need for further research, especially in light of the global amphibian decline.

  12. The complexity of amphibian population declines: understanding the role of cofactors in driving amphibian losses.

    PubMed

    Blaustein, Andrew R; Han, Barbara A; Relyea, Rick A; Johnson, Pieter T J; Buck, Julia C; Gervasi, Stephanie S; Kats, Lee B

    2011-03-01

    Population losses and extinctions of species are occurring at unprecedented rates, as exemplified by declines and extinctions of amphibians worldwide. However, studies of amphibian population declines generally do not address the complexity of the phenomenon or its implications for ecological communities, focusing instead on single factors affecting particular amphibian species. We argue that the causes for amphibian population declines are complex; may differ among species, populations, and life stages within a population; and are context dependent with multiple stressors interacting to drive declines. Because amphibians are key components of communities, we emphasize the importance of investigating amphibian declines at the community level. Selection pressures over evolutionary time have molded amphibian life history characteristics, such that they may remain static even in the face of strong, recent human-induced selection pressures.

  13. Chironomidae bloodworms larvae as aquatic amphibian food.

    PubMed

    Fard, Mojdeh Sharifian; Pasmans, Frank; Adriaensen, Connie; Laing, Gijs Du; Janssens, Geert Paul Jules; Martel, An

    2014-01-01

    Different species of chironomids larvae (Diptera: Chironomidae) so-called bloodworms are widely distributed in the sediments of all types of freshwater habitats and considered as an important food source for amphibians. In our study, three species of Chironomidae (Baeotendipes noctivagus, Benthalia dissidens, and Chironomus riparius) were identified in 23 samples of larvae from Belgium, Poland, Russia, and Ukraine provided by a distributor in Belgium. We evaluated the suitability of these samples as amphibian food based on four different aspects: the likelihood of amphibian pathogens spreading, risk of heavy metal accumulation in amphibians, nutritive value, and risk of spreading of zoonotic bacteria (Salmonella, Campylobacter, and ESBL producing Enterobacteriaceae). We found neither zoonotic bacteria nor the amphibian pathogens Ranavirus and Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in these samples. Our data showed that among the five heavy metals tested (Hg, Cu, Cd, Pb, and Zn), the excess level of Pb in two samples and low content of Zn in four samples implicated potential risk of Pb accumulation and Zn inadequacy. Proximate nutritional analysis revealed that, chironomidae larvae are consistently high in protein but more variable in lipid content. Accordingly, variations in the lipid: protein ratio can affect the amount and pathway of energy supply to the amphibians. Our study indicated although environmentally-collected chironomids larvae may not be vectors of specific pathogens, they can be associated with nutritional imbalances and may also result in Pb bioaccumulation and Zn inadequacy in amphibians. Chironomidae larvae may thus not be recommended as single diet item for amphibians.

  14. Amphibian decline in Yellowstone National Park

    Treesearch

    Debra A. Patla; Charles R. Peterson; Paul Stephen Corn

    2009-01-01

    We conduct long-term amphibian monitoring in Yellowstone National Park (YNP) (1) and read McMenamin et al.'s article (2) with interest. This study documents decline in the extent of seasonal wetlands in the Lamar Valley of YNP during extended drought, but the conclusion, widely reported in the media, of "severe declines in 4 once-common amphibian species,...

  15. [Comparative morphology of the livers in amphibians].

    PubMed

    Inoue, Asuka; Akiyoshi, Hideo; Naitoh, Tomio; Yamashita, Masamichi

    2002-11-01

    Amphibians are divided into three orders: Gymnophiona, Urodela and Anura. We studied on the correlation between the liver structures in the three orders of amphibians by histological technique. Livers of thirty species of amphibian were fixed by perfusion with paraformaldehyde, and observed by light microscopy in special staining for elastic fibers. The cytoskeletal components of the hepatic stellate cells and myofibroblasts were identified by immunohistochemistry for glial fibrillary acidic protein and a-smooth muscle actin. Among the three orders of amphibians, Gymnophiona and Urodela were characterized the development of lymph vessels in liver capsules and Glisson's sheath. The present study indicates that there are differences in the pattern of hepatic histological components in the amphibians examined at this time. We discussed their diverged mode of living that can be categorized into three groups: aquatic, aqua-terrestrial and fully terrestrial group.

  16. Space research with intact organisms

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Phillips, Robert W.; Haddy, Francis J.

    1992-01-01

    Effects of space exposure on intact organisms are briefly reviewed, and examples of future experiments that might provide new information on the role of gravity in the evolution of life are suggested. It is noted that long term experiments with intact plant and animals for studying gravitational thresholds will provide important new insights.

  17. Large-scale recovery of an endangered amphibian despite ongoing exposure to multiple stressors

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Knapp, Roland A.; Fellers, Gary M.; Kleeman, Patrick M.; Miller, David A. W.; Vrendenburg, Vance T.; Rosenblum, Erica Bree; Briggs, Cheryl J.

    2016-01-01

    Amphibians are one of the most threatened animal groups, with 32% of species at risk for extinction. Given this imperiled status, is the disappearance of a large fraction of the Earth’s amphibians inevitable, or are some declining species more resilient than is generally assumed? We address this question in a species that is emblematic of many declining amphibians, the endangered Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog (Rana sierrae). Based on >7,000 frog surveys conducted across Yosemite National Park over a 20-y period, we show that, after decades of decline and despite ongoing exposure to multiple stressors, including introduced fish, the recently emerged disease chytridiomycosis, and pesticides, R. sierrae abundance increased sevenfold during the study and at a rate of 11% per year. These increases occurred in hundreds of populations throughout Yosemite, providing a rare example of amphibian recovery at an ecologically relevant spatial scale. Results from a laboratory experiment indicate that these increases may be in part because of reduced frog susceptibility to chytridiomycosis. The disappearance of nonnative fish from numerous water bodies after cessation of stocking also contributed to the recovery. The large-scale increases in R. sierrae abundance that we document suggest that, when habitats are relatively intact and stressors are reduced in their importance by active management or species’ adaptive responses, declines of some amphibians may be partially reversible, at least at a regional scale. Other studies conducted over similarly large temporal and spatial scales are critically needed to provide insight and generality about the reversibility of amphibian declines at a global scale.

  18. Large-scale recovery of an endangered amphibian despite ongoing exposure to multiple stressors.

    PubMed

    Knapp, Roland A; Fellers, Gary M; Kleeman, Patrick M; Miller, David A W; Vredenburg, Vance T; Rosenblum, Erica Bree; Briggs, Cheryl J

    2016-10-18

    Amphibians are one of the most threatened animal groups, with 32% of species at risk for extinction. Given this imperiled status, is the disappearance of a large fraction of the Earth's amphibians inevitable, or are some declining species more resilient than is generally assumed? We address this question in a species that is emblematic of many declining amphibians, the endangered Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog (Rana sierrae). Based on >7,000 frog surveys conducted across Yosemite National Park over a 20-y period, we show that, after decades of decline and despite ongoing exposure to multiple stressors, including introduced fish, the recently emerged disease chytridiomycosis, and pesticides, R. sierrae abundance increased sevenfold during the study and at a rate of 11% per year. These increases occurred in hundreds of populations throughout Yosemite, providing a rare example of amphibian recovery at an ecologically relevant spatial scale. Results from a laboratory experiment indicate that these increases may be in part because of reduced frog susceptibility to chytridiomycosis. The disappearance of nonnative fish from numerous water bodies after cessation of stocking also contributed to the recovery. The large-scale increases in R. sierrae abundance that we document suggest that, when habitats are relatively intact and stressors are reduced in their importance by active management or species' adaptive responses, declines of some amphibians may be partially reversible, at least at a regional scale. Other studies conducted over similarly large temporal and spatial scales are critically needed to provide insight and generality about the reversibility of amphibian declines at a global scale.

  19. Two-stage recovery of amphibian assemblages following selective logging of tropical forests.

    PubMed

    Adum, Gilbert Baase; Eichhorn, Markus Peter; Oduro, William; Ofori-Boateng, Caleb; Rödel, Mark-Oliver

    2013-04-01

    There is a lack of quantitative information on the effectiveness of selective-logging practices in ameliorating effects of logging on faunal communities. We conducted a large-scale replicated field study in 3 selectively logged moist semideciduous forests in West Africa at varying times after timber extraction to assess post logging effects on amphibian assemblages. Specifically, we assessed whether the diversity, abundance, and assemblage composition of amphibians changed over time for forest-dependent species and those tolerant of forest disturbance. In 2009, we sampled amphibians in 3 forests (total of 48 study plots, each 2 ha) in southwestern Ghana. In each forest, we established plots in undisturbed forest, recently logged forest, and forest logged 10 and 20 years previously. Logging intensity was constant across sites with 3 trees/ha removed. Recently logged forests supported substantially more species than unlogged forests. This was due to an influx of disturbance-tolerant species after logging. Simultaneously Simpson's index decreased, with increased in dominance of a few species. As time since logging increased richness of disturbance-tolerant species decreased until 10 years after logging when their composition was indistinguishable from unlogged forests. Simpson's index increased with time since logging and was indistinguishable from unlogged forest 20 years after logging. Forest specialists decreased after logging and recovered slowly. However, after 20 years amphibian assemblages had returned to a state indistinguishable from that of undisturbed forest in both abundance and composition. These results demonstrate that even with low-intensity logging (≤3 trees/ha) a minimum 20-year rotation of logging is required for effective conservation of amphibian assemblages in moist semideciduous forests. Furthermore, remnant patches of intact forests retained in the landscape and the presence of permanent brooks may aid in the effective recovery of amphibian

  20. Large-scale recovery of an endangered amphibian despite ongoing exposure to multiple stressors

    PubMed Central

    Knapp, Roland A.; Fellers, Gary M.; Kleeman, Patrick M.; Miller, David A. W.; Rosenblum, Erica Bree; Briggs, Cheryl J.

    2016-01-01

    Amphibians are one of the most threatened animal groups, with 32% of species at risk for extinction. Given this imperiled status, is the disappearance of a large fraction of the Earth’s amphibians inevitable, or are some declining species more resilient than is generally assumed? We address this question in a species that is emblematic of many declining amphibians, the endangered Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog (Rana sierrae). Based on >7,000 frog surveys conducted across Yosemite National Park over a 20-y period, we show that, after decades of decline and despite ongoing exposure to multiple stressors, including introduced fish, the recently emerged disease chytridiomycosis, and pesticides, R. sierrae abundance increased sevenfold during the study and at a rate of 11% per year. These increases occurred in hundreds of populations throughout Yosemite, providing a rare example of amphibian recovery at an ecologically relevant spatial scale. Results from a laboratory experiment indicate that these increases may be in part because of reduced frog susceptibility to chytridiomycosis. The disappearance of nonnative fish from numerous water bodies after cessation of stocking also contributed to the recovery. The large-scale increases in R. sierrae abundance that we document suggest that, when habitats are relatively intact and stressors are reduced in their importance by active management or species’ adaptive responses, declines of some amphibians may be partially reversible, at least at a regional scale. Other studies conducted over similarly large temporal and spatial scales are critically needed to provide insight and generality about the reversibility of amphibian declines at a global scale. PMID:27698128

  1. Radioautographic investigation of retinal growth in mature amphibians

    SciTech Connect

    Svistunov, S.A.; Mitashov, V.I.

    1986-07-01

    Growth of the retina was studied in mature intact amphibians, tritons, axolotls, ambystomas and clawed frogs, for six months using multiple injection of /sup 3/H-thymidine. It was established that the source of replenishment of the retina by new cells is its terminal zone in all animals investigated. This is attested to by the gradual migration of labeled cells from the growth zone into differentiated layers of the retina. The most intensely labeled cells occupy a distal position relative to other labeled cells, therefore marking the boundary between the initial part of the retina, not containing labeled nuclei, and the part being augmented. For each species studied, a level of proliferative activity is characteristic for cells of the terminal zone, which decreases in the order axolotl-clawed frog-triton -ambystoma. In the axolotl and additional growth zone is noted in the retina, in addition to the terminal, which is located in the area of the unclosed section of the embryonic fissure. Results obtained serve as a basis for the regenerative potentials of eye tissues revealed previously in these amphibian species.

  2. Fire and amphibians in North America

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pilliod, D.S.; Bury, R.B.; Hyde, E.J.; Pearl, C.A.; Corn, P.S.

    2003-01-01

    Information on amphibian responses to fire and fuel reduction practices is critically needed due to potential declines of species and the prevalence of new, more intensive fire management practices in North American forests. The goals of this review are to summarize the known and potential effects of fire and fuels management on amphibians and their aquatic habitats, and to identify information gaps to help direct future scientific research. Amphibians as a group are taxonomically and ecologically diverse; in turn, responses to fire and associated habitat alteration are expected to vary widely among species and among geographic regions. Available data suggest that amphibian responses to fire are spatially and temporally variable and incompletely understood. Much of the limited research has addressed short-term (1-3 years) effects of prescribed fire on terrestrial life stages of amphibians in the southeastern United States. Information on the long-term negative effects of fire on amphibians and the importance of fire for maintaining amphibian communities is sparse for the majority of taxa in North America. Given the size and severity of recent wildland fires and the national effort to reduce fuels on federal lands, future studies are needed to examine the effects of these landscape disturbances on amphibians. We encourage studies to address population-level responses of amphibians to fire by examining how different life stages are affected by changes in aquatic, riparian, and upland habitats. Research designs need to be credible and provide information that is relevant for fire managers and those responsible for assessing the potential effects of various fuel reduction alternatives on rare, sensitive, and endangered amphibian species. ?? 2003 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Ecology and pathology of amphibian ranaviruses.

    PubMed

    Gray, Matthew J; Miller, Debra L; Hoverman, Jason T

    2009-12-03

    Mass mortality of amphibians has occurred globally since at least the early 1990s from viral pathogens that are members of the genus Ranavirus, family Iridoviridae. The pathogen infects multiple amphibian hosts, larval and adult cohorts, and may persist in herpetofaunal and osteichthyan reservoirs. Environmental persistence of ranavirus virions outside a host may be several weeks or longer in aquatic systems. Transmission occurs by indirect and direct routes, and includes exposure to contaminated water or soil, casual or direct contact with infected individuals, and ingestion of infected tissue during predation, cannibalism, or necrophagy. Some gross lesions include swelling of the limbs or body, erythema, swollen friable livers, and hemorrhage. Susceptible amphibians usually die from chronic cell death in multiple organs, which can occur within a few days following infection or may take several weeks. Amphibian species differ in their susceptibility to ranaviruses, which may be related to their co-evolutionary history with the pathogen. The occurrence of recent widespread amphibian population die-offs from ranaviruses may be an interaction of suppressed and naïve host immunity, anthropogenic stressors, and novel strain introduction. This review summarizes the ecological research on amphibian ranaviruses, discusses possible drivers of emergence and conservation strategies, and presents ideas for future research directions. We also discuss common pathological signs of ranaviral disease, methods for diagnostic evaluation, and ranavirus surveillance methods. In as much as ranaviral disease is listed as a notifiable disease by the World Organization for Animal Health and is a threat to amphibian survival, we recommend that biosecurity precautions are implemented by nations to reduce the likelihood of transporting ranavirus virions among populations. Biosecurity precautions include disinfecting footwear and equipment that comes in contact with surface water inhabited

  4. First Evidence of Amphibian Chytrid Fungus (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis) and Ranavirus in Hong Kong Amphibian Trade

    PubMed Central

    Kolby, Jonathan E.; Smith, Kristine M.; Berger, Lee; Karesh, William B; Preston, Asa; Pessier, Allan P.; Skerratt, Lee F.

    2014-01-01

    The emerging infectious amphibian diseases caused by amphibian chytrid fungus (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, Bd) and ranaviruses are responsible for global amphibian population declines and extinctions. Although likely to have been spread by a variety of activities, transcontinental dispersal appears closely associated with the international trade in live amphibians. The territory of Hong Kong reports frequent, high volume trade in amphibians, and yet the presence of Bd and ranavirus have not previously been detected in either traded or free-ranging amphibians. In 2012, a prospective surveillance project was conducted to investigate the presence of these pathogens in commercial shipments of live amphibians exported from Hong Kong International Airport. Analysis of skin (Bd) and cloacal (ranavirus) swabs by quantitative PCR detected pathogen presence in 31/265 (11.7%) and in 105/185 (56.8%) of amphibians, respectively. In addition, the water in which animals were transported tested positive for Bd, demonstrating the risk of pathogen pollution by the disposal of untreated wastewater. It is uncertain whether Bd and ranavirus remain contained within Hong Kong’s trade sector, or if native amphibians have already been exposed. Rapid response efforts are now urgently needed to determine current pathogen distribution in Hong Kong, evaluate potential trade-associated exposure to free-ranging amphibians, and identify opportunities to prevent disease establishment. PMID:24599268

  5. First evidence of amphibian chytrid fungus (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis) and ranavirus in Hong Kong amphibian trade.

    PubMed

    Kolby, Jonathan E; Smith, Kristine M; Berger, Lee; Karesh, William B; Preston, Asa; Pessier, Allan P; Skerratt, Lee F

    2014-01-01

    The emerging infectious amphibian diseases caused by amphibian chytrid fungus (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, Bd) and ranaviruses are responsible for global amphibian population declines and extinctions. Although likely to have been spread by a variety of activities, transcontinental dispersal appears closely associated with the international trade in live amphibians. The territory of Hong Kong reports frequent, high volume trade in amphibians, and yet the presence of Bd and ranavirus have not previously been detected in either traded or free-ranging amphibians. In 2012, a prospective surveillance project was conducted to investigate the presence of these pathogens in commercial shipments of live amphibians exported from Hong Kong International Airport. Analysis of skin (Bd) and cloacal (ranavirus) swabs by quantitative PCR detected pathogen presence in 31/265 (11.7%) and in 105/185 (56.8%) of amphibians, respectively. In addition, the water in which animals were transported tested positive for Bd, demonstrating the risk of pathogen pollution by the disposal of untreated wastewater. It is uncertain whether Bd and ranavirus remain contained within Hong Kong's trade sector, or if native amphibians have already been exposed. Rapid response efforts are now urgently needed to determine current pathogen distribution in Hong Kong, evaluate potential trade-associated exposure to free-ranging amphibians, and identify opportunities to prevent disease establishment.

  6. Skeletal Dysplasias

    PubMed Central

    Krakow, Deborah

    2015-01-01

    Synoposis The skeletal dysplasias are a group of more than 450 heritable disorders of bone. They frequently present in the newborn period with disproportion, radiographic abnormalities, and occasionally other organ system abnormalities. For improved clinical care it is important to determine a precise diagnosis to aid in management, familial recurrence and identify those disorders highly associated with mortality. Long-term management of these disorders is predicated on an understanding of the associated skeletal system abnormalities and these children are best served by a team approach to health care surveillance. PMID:26042906

  7. Brain regeneration in anuran amphibians.

    PubMed

    Endo, Tetsuya; Yoshino, Jun; Kado, Koji; Tochinai, Shin

    2007-02-01

    Urodele amphibians are highly regenerative animals. After partial removal of the brain in urodeles, ependymal cells around the wound surface proliferate, differentiate into neurons and glias and finally regenerate the lost tissue. In contrast to urodeles, this type of brain regeneration is restricted only to the larval stages in anuran amphibians (frogs). In adult frogs, whereas ependymal cells proliferate in response to brain injury, they cannot migrate and close the wound surface, resulting in the failure of regeneration. Therefore frogs, in particular Xenopus, provide us with at least two modes to study brain regeneration. One is to study normal regeneration by using regenerative larvae. In this type of study, the requirement of reconnection between a regenerating brain and sensory neurons was demonstrated. Functional restoration of a regenerated telencephalon was also easily evaluated because Xenopus shows simple responses to the stimulus of a food odor. The other mode is to compare regenerative larvae and non-regenerative adults. By using this mode, it is suggested that there are regeneration-competent cells even in the non-regenerative adult brain, and that immobility of those cells might cause the failure of regeneration. Here we review studies that have led to these conclusions.

  8. Sperm storage in caecilian amphibians.

    PubMed

    Kuehnel, Susanne; Kupfer, Alexander

    2012-06-06

    Female sperm storage has evolved independently multiple times among vertebrates to control reproduction in response to the environment. In internally fertilising amphibians, female salamanders store sperm in cloacal spermathecae, whereas among anurans sperm storage in oviducts is known only in tailed frogs. Facilitated through extensive field sampling following historical observations we tested for sperm storing structures in the female urogenital tract of fossorial, tropical caecilian amphibians. In the oviparous Ichthyophis cf. kohtaoensis, aggregated sperm were present in a distinct region of the posterior oviduct but not in the cloaca in six out of seven vitellogenic females prior to oviposition. Spermatozoa were found most abundantly between the mucosal folds. In relation to the reproductive status decreased amounts of sperm were present in gravid females compared to pre-ovulatory females. Sperm were absent in females past oviposition. Our findings indicate short-term oviductal sperm storage in the oviparous Ichthyophis cf. kohtaoensis. We assume that in female caecilians exhibiting high levels of parental investment sperm storage has evolved in order to optimally coordinate reproductive events and to increase fitness.

  9. Sperm storage in caecilian amphibians

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Female sperm storage has evolved independently multiple times among vertebrates to control reproduction in response to the environment. In internally fertilising amphibians, female salamanders store sperm in cloacal spermathecae, whereas among anurans sperm storage in oviducts is known only in tailed frogs. Facilitated through extensive field sampling following historical observations we tested for sperm storing structures in the female urogenital tract of fossorial, tropical caecilian amphibians. Findings In the oviparous Ichthyophis cf. kohtaoensis, aggregated sperm were present in a distinct region of the posterior oviduct but not in the cloaca in six out of seven vitellogenic females prior to oviposition. Spermatozoa were found most abundantly between the mucosal folds. In relation to the reproductive status decreased amounts of sperm were present in gravid females compared to pre-ovulatory females. Sperm were absent in females past oviposition. Conclusions Our findings indicate short-term oviductal sperm storage in the oviparous Ichthyophis cf. kohtaoensis. We assume that in female caecilians exhibiting high levels of parental investment sperm storage has evolved in order to optimally coordinate reproductive events and to increase fitness. PMID:22672478

  10. The state of amphibians in the United States

    Treesearch

    E. Muths; M. J. Adams; E. H. C. Grant; D. Miller; P. S. Corn; L. C. Ball

    2012-01-01

    More than 25 years ago, scientists began to identify unexplained declines in amphibian populations around the world. Much has been learned since then, but amphibian declines have not abated and the interactions among the various threats to amphibians are not clear. Amphibian decline is a problem of local, national, and international scope that can affect ecosystem...

  11. Effectiveness of intact capture media

    SciTech Connect

    Tsou, P.; Aubert, J.; Brownlee, D.; Hrubesh, L.; Williams, J.; Albee, A.

    1989-01-01

    The possibility of capturing cosmic dust at hypervelocity has been demonstrated in the laboratory and in the unintended Solar Max spacecraft. This technology will enable a comet coma sample return mission and be important for the earth orbital cosmic dust collection mission, i.e., the Space Station Cosmic Dust Collection Facility. Since the only controllable factor in an intact capture of cosmic dust is the capturing medium, characterizing the effectiveness and properties of available capture media would be very important in the development of the technique for capturing hypervelocity cosmic dust intact. We have evaluated various capture underdense media for the relative effectiveness for intact capture. 2 refs., 2 figs.

  12. Nutrition and Health in Amphibian Husbandry

    PubMed Central

    Ferrie, Gina M.; Alford, Vance C.; Atkinson, Jim; Baitchman, Eric; Barber, Diane; Blaner, William S.; Crawshaw, Graham; Daneault, Andy; Dierenfeld, Ellen; Finke, Mark; Fleming, Greg; Gagliardo, Ron; Hoffman, Eric A.; Karasov, William; Klasing, Kirk; Koutsos, Elizabeth; Lankton, Julia; Lavin, Shana R.; Lentini, Andrew; Livingston, Shannon; Lock, Brad; Mason, Tom; McComb, Alejandra; Morris, Cheryl; Pessier, Allan P.; Olea-Popelka, Francisco; Probst, Tom; Rodriguez, Carlos; Schad, Kristine; Semmen, Kent; Sincage, Jamie; Stamper, M. Andrew; Steinmetz, Jason; Sullivan, Kathleen; Terrell, Scott; Wertan, Nina; Wheaton, Catharine J.; Wilson, Brad; Valdes, Eduardo V.

    2015-01-01

    Amphibian biology is intricate, and there are many inter-related factors that need to be understood before establishing successful Conservation Breeding Programs (CBPs). Nutritional needs of amphibians are highly integrated with disease and their husbandry needs, and the diversity of developmental stages, natural habitats, and feeding strategies result in many different recommendations for proper care and feeding. This review identifies several areas where there is substantial room for improvement in maintaining healthy ex situ amphibian populations specifically in the areas of obtaining and utilizing natural history data for both amphibians and their dietary items, achieving more appropriate environmental parameters, understanding stress and hormone production, and promoting better physical and population health. Using a scientific or research framework to answer questions about disease, nutrition, husbandry, genetics, and endocrinology of ex situ amphibians will improve specialists’ understanding of the needs of these species. In general, there is a lack of baseline data and comparative information for most basic aspects of amphibian biology as well as standardized laboratory approaches. Instituting a formalized research approach in multiple scientific disciplines will be beneficial not only to the management of current ex situ populations, but also in moving forward with future conservation and reintroduction projects. This overview of gaps in knowledge concerning ex situ amphibian care should serve as a foundation for much needed future research in these areas. PMID:25296396

  13. Nutrition and health in amphibian husbandry.

    PubMed

    Ferrie, Gina M; Alford, Vance C; Atkinson, Jim; Baitchman, Eric; Barber, Diane; Blaner, William S; Crawshaw, Graham; Daneault, Andy; Dierenfeld, Ellen; Finke, Mark; Fleming, Greg; Gagliardo, Ron; Hoffman, Eric A; Karasov, William; Klasing, Kirk; Koutsos, Elizabeth; Lankton, Julia; Lavin, Shana R; Lentini, Andrew; Livingston, Shannon; Lock, Brad; Mason, Tom; McComb, Alejandra; Morris, Cheryl; Pessier, Allan P; Olea-Popelka, Francisco; Probst, Tom; Rodriguez, Carlos; Schad, Kristine; Semmen, Kent; Sincage, Jamie; Stamper, M Andrew; Steinmetz, Jason; Sullivan, Kathleen; Terrell, Scott; Wertan, Nina; Wheaton, Catharine J; Wilson, Brad; Valdes, Eduardo V

    2014-01-01

    Amphibian biology is intricate, and there are many inter-related factors that need to be understood before establishing successful Conservation Breeding Programs (CBPs). Nutritional needs of amphibians are highly integrated with disease and their husbandry needs, and the diversity of developmental stages, natural habitats, and feeding strategies result in many different recommendations for proper care and feeding. This review identifies several areas where there is substantial room for improvement in maintaining healthy ex situ amphibian populations specifically in the areas of obtaining and utilizing natural history data for both amphibians and their dietary items, achieving more appropriate environmental parameters, understanding stress and hormone production, and promoting better physical and population health. Using a scientific or research framework to answer questions about disease, nutrition, husbandry, genetics, and endocrinology of ex situ amphibians will improve specialists' understanding of the needs of these species. In general, there is a lack of baseline data and comparative information for most basic aspects of amphibian biology as well as standardized laboratory approaches. Instituting a formalized research approach in multiple scientific disciplines will be beneficial not only to the management of current ex situ populations, but also in moving forward with future conservation and reintroduction projects. This overview of gaps in knowledge concerning ex situ amphibian care should serve as a foundation for much needed future research in these areas.

  14. Suitability of amphibians and reptiles for translocation.

    PubMed

    Germano, Jennifer M; Bishop, Phillip J

    2009-02-01

    Translocations are important tools in the field of conservation. Despite increased use over the last few decades, the appropriateness of translocations for amphibians and reptiles has been debated widely over the past 20 years. To provide a comprehensive evaluation of the suitability of amphibians and reptiles for translocation, we reviewed the results of amphibian and reptile translocation projects published between 1991 and 2006. The success rate of amphibian and reptile translocations reported over this period was twice that reported in an earlier review in 1991. Success and failure rates were independent of the taxonomic class (Amphibia or Reptilia) released. Reptile translocations driven by human-wildlife conflict mitigation had a higher failure rate than those motivated by conservation, and more recent projects of reptile translocations had unknown outcomes. The outcomes of amphibian translocations were significantly related to the number of animals released, with projects releasing over 1000 individuals being most successful. The most common reported causes of translocation failure were homing and migration of introduced individuals out of release sites and poor habitat. The increased success of amphibian and reptile translocations reviewed in this study compared with the 1991 review is encouraging for future conservation projects. Nevertheless, more preparation, monitoring, reporting of results, and experimental testing of techniques and reintroduction questions need to occur to improve translocations of amphibians and reptiles as a whole.

  15. Skeletal muscle

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    There are approximately 650-850 muscles in the human body these include skeletal (striated), smooth and cardiac muscle. The approximation is based on what some anatomists consider separate muscle or muscle systems. Muscles are classified based on their anatomy (striated vs. smooth) and if they are v...

  16. [Perspective on gravitational biology of amphibians].

    PubMed

    Yamashita, Masamichi; Naitoh, Tomio; Wassersug, Richard J

    2002-12-01

    We review here the scientific significance of the use of amphibians for research in gravitational biology. Since amphibian eggs are quite large, yet develop rapidly and externally, it is easy to observe their development. Consequently amphibians were the first vertebrates to have their early developmental processes investigated in space. Though several deviations from normal embryonic development occur when amphibians are raised in microgravity, their developmental program is robust enough to return the organisms to an ostensibly normal morphology by the time they hatch. Evolutionally, amphibians were the first vertebrate animal to come out of the water and onto land. Subsequently they diversified and have adaptively radiated to various habitats. They now inhabit aquatic, terrestrial, arboreal and fossorial niches. This diversity can be used to help study the biological effects of gravity at the organismal level, where macroscopic phenomena are associated with gravitational loading. By choosing different amphibian models and using a comparative approach one can effectively identify the action of gravity on biological systems, and the adaptation that vertebrates have made to this loading. Advances in cellular and molecular biology provide powerful tools for the study in many fields, including gravitational biology, and amphibians have proven to be good models for studies at those levels as well. The low metabolic rates of amphibians make them convenient organisms to work with (compared to birds and mammals) in the difficult and confined spaces on orbiting research platforms. We include here a review of what is known about and the potential for further behavioral and physiological researches in space using amphibians.

  17. Leaping forward in amphibian health and nutrition.

    PubMed

    Olea-Popelka, Francisco; Ferrie, Gina M; Morris, Cheryl; Pessier, Allan P; Schad, Kristine; Stamper, M Andrew; Gagliardo, Ron; Koutsos, Elizabeth; Valdes, Eduardo V

    2014-01-01

    The Epidemiology Working Group, a subgroup of the participants of the Disney's Animal Kingdom Workshop on "Ex situ Amphibian Medicine and Nutrition," identified a critical need to design and implement approaches that will facilitate the assessment and evaluation of factors impacting amphibian health. In this manuscript, we describe and summarize the outcomes of this workshop with regards (a) the identified gaps in knowledge, (b) identified priorities for closing these gaps, and (c) compile a list of actions to address these priorities. Four general areas of improvement were identified in relation to how measurements are currently being taken to evaluate ex situ amphibian health: nutrition, infectious diseases, husbandry, and integrated biology including genetics and endocrinology. The proposed actions that will be taken in order to address the identified gaps include: (1) identify and quantify major health issues affecting ex situ amphibian populations, (2) identify and coordinate laboratories to conduct analyses using standardized and validated protocols to measure nutritional, infectious diseases, genetic, and hormonal parameters, (3) determine in situ baseline distribution of parameters related to amphibian health, and (4) establish an inter-disciplinary research approach to target specific hypotheses related to amphibian health such as the effects of population genetics (e.g., relatedness, inbreeding) on disease susceptibility, or how environmental parameters are related to chronic stress and hormone production. We think is important to address current gaps in knowledge regarding amphibian health in order to increase the probability to succeed in addressing the issues faced by in situ and ex situ amphibians populations. We are confident that the recommendations provided in this manuscript will facilitate to address these challenges and could have a positive impact in both the health of in situ and ex situ amphibian populations, worldwide. © 2014 Wiley

  18. Chytridiomycosis: a global threat to amphibians.

    PubMed

    Pereira, P L L; Torres, A M C; Soares, D F M; Hijosa-Valsero, M; Bécares, E

    2013-12-01

    Chytridiomycosis, which is caused by Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, is an emerging infectious disease of amphibians. The disease is one of the main causes of the global decline in amphibians. The aetiological agent is ubiquitous, with worldwide distribution, and affects a large number of amphibian species in several biomes. In the last decade, scientific research has substantially increased knowledge of the aetiological agent and the associated infection. However, important epidemiological aspects of the environment-mediated interactions between the aetiological agent and the host are not yet clear. The objective of the present review is to describe chytridiomycosis with regard to the major features of the aetiological agent, the host and the environment.

  19. Ecotoxicology of organic contaminants to amphibians

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sparling, D.W.; Sparling, Donald W.; Linder, Greg L.; Bishop, Christine A.

    2000-01-01

    The effects of organic contaminants on amphibians are poorly known but of considerable interest. These contaminants include the highly toxic dioxins and furans as well as PCBs, PAHs and organochlorine pesticides. Although these compounds may have lower acute toxicity than dioxins and furans, they have been implicated in several problems associated with genotoxicity, endocrine disruption, malformations and reduced growth. There is evidence that amphibian tadpoles bioaccumulate these organic compounds and may have biological concentrating factors ranging in the hundreds. This chapter reviews what is known about the effects and concentrations of organic contaminants in amphibians and provides recommendations for further research

  20. Cardiovascular physiology and diseases of amphibians.

    PubMed

    Heinz-Taheny, Kathleen M

    2009-01-01

    The class Amphibia includes three orders of amphibians: the anurans (frogs and toads), urodeles (salamanders, axolotls, and newts), and caecilians. The diversity of lifestyles across these three orders has accompanying differences in the cardiovascular anatomy and physiology allowing for adaptations to aquatic or terrestrial habitats, pulmonic or gill respiration, hibernation, and body elongation (in the caecilian). This article provides a review of amphibian cardiovascular anatomy and physiology with discussion of unique species adaptations. In addition, amphibians as cardiovascular animal models and commonly encountered natural diseases are covered.

  1. Report of Amphibian Development Group

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Malacinski, G.

    1985-01-01

    Amphibian and fish embryos are extremely well suited for studies on pattern specification, whereas other systems (e.g., avian or mammalian) might be just as well suited for studies on differentiation or growth. Those distinctions are important for at least two reasons: (1) More precise focus regarding underlying mechanisms is called for when those distinctions are made. That facilitates the formulation of specific models or hypotheses; and (2) stress effects (i.e., the effects of weightlessness on structures (e.g., bones) which normally bear a load) are distinguished as being indirect, in contrast to direct effects of microgravity, which would be expected to act on pattern specification. That is, direct gravity effects are distinguished from indirect stress effects.

  2. Amphibian resources on the internet.

    PubMed

    Nolan, Michael W; Smith, Stephen A

    2007-01-01

    The use of amphibians in classrooms and research laboratories has increased, along with a corresponding increase in the amount of information about these animals on the Internet. This review is intended to aid both novices and experts in the search of such information. The bibliography of Internet resources is organized by discipline and includes general and selected species information, taxonomy, natural history, anatomy and histology, physiology, ontogeny, genetics, conservation, toxicology, medicine and surgery, sources (for animals, housing, and research tools), listservs, databases, associations, educational sources, and husbandry. For each web site, descriptive titles, web addresses, and a brief review are provided. Note that the authors of this review cannot assure the accuracy of content in these web resources.

  3. Road proximity increases risk of skeletal abnormalities in wood frogs from National Wildlife Refuges in Alaska.

    PubMed

    Reeves, Mari K; Dolph, Christine L; Zimmer, Heidi; Tjeerdema, Ronald S; Trust, Kimberly A

    2008-08-01

    Skeletal and eye abnormalities in amphibians are not well understood, and they appear to be increasing while global populations decline. Here, we present the first study of amphibian abnormalities in Alaska. In this study we investigated the relationship between anthropogenic influences and the probability of skeletal and eye abnormalities in Alaskan wood frogs (Rana sylvatica). From 2000 to 2006, we examined 9,269 metamorphic wood frogs from 86 breeding sites on five National Wildlife Refuges: Arctic, Innoko, Kenai, Tetlin, and Yukon Delta. Using road proximity as a proxy for human development, we tested relationships between skeletal and eye abnormalities and anthropogenic effects. We also examined a subsample of 458 frogs for the trematode parasite Ribeiroia ondatrae, a known cause of amphibian limb abnormalities. Prevalence of skeletal and eye abnormalities at Alaskan refuges ranged from 1.5% to 7.9% and were as high as 20% at individual breeding sites. Proximity to roads increased the risk of skeletal abnormalities (p = 0.004) but not eye abnormalities. The only significant predictor of eye abnormalities was year sampled (p = 0.006). R. ondatrae was not detected in any Alaskan wood frogs. Abnormality prevalence at road-accessible sites in the Kenai and Tetlin refuges is among the highest reported in the published literature. Proximity to roads is positively correlated with risk of skeletal abnormalities in Alaskan wood frogs.

  4. Road Proximity Increases Risk of Skeletal Abnormalities in Wood Frogs from National Wildlife Refuges in Alaska

    PubMed Central

    Reeves, Mari K.; Dolph, Christine L.; Zimmer, Heidi; Tjeerdema, Ronald S.; Trust, Kimberly A.

    2008-01-01

    Background Skeletal and eye abnormalities in amphibians are not well understood, and they appear to be increasing while global populations decline. Here, we present the first study of amphibian abnormalities in Alaska. Objective In this study we investigated the relationship between anthropogenic influences and the probability of skeletal and eye abnormalities in Alaskan wood frogs (Rana sylvatica). Methods From 2000 to 2006, we examined 9,269 metamorphic wood frogs from 86 breeding sites on five National Wildlife Refuges: Arctic, Innoko, Kenai, Tetlin, and Yukon Delta. Using road proximity as a proxy for human development, we tested relationships between skeletal and eye abnormalities and anthropogenic effects. We also examined a subsample of 458 frogs for the trematode parasite Ribeiroia ondatrae, a known cause of amphibian limb abnormalities. Results Prevalence of skeletal and eye abnormalities at Alaskan refuges ranged from 1.5% to 7.9% and were as high as 20% at individual breeding sites. Proximity to roads increased the risk of skeletal abnormalities (p = 0.004) but not eye abnormalities. The only significant predictor of eye abnormalities was year sampled (p = 0.006). R. ondatrae was not detected in any Alaskan wood frogs. Conclusions Abnormality prevalence at road-accessible sites in the Kenai and Tetlin refuges is among the highest reported in the published literature. Proximity to roads is positively correlated with risk of skeletal abnormalities in Alaskan wood frogs. PMID:18709167

  5. Amphibian responses to photoinduced toxicity of PAHs

    SciTech Connect

    Hatch, A.C.; Burton, G.A. Jr.

    1995-12-31

    Amphibians are essential components of many ecosystems, yet little information exists on their sensitivity to environmental stressors. Recent evidence shows amphibian diversity is declining. Others have suggested this decline is a result of increasing ultraviolet (UV) light levels. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are widespread pollutants in the aquatic environment and their toxicity is increased in the presence of UV light. Embryos of two frogs (Rana pipiens and Xenopus laevis) were exposed to a PAH, fluoranthene, to evaluate amphibian responses to this common contaminant in the presence of sunlight. Hatching rate and development were measured in field and laboratory exposures at multiple concentrations and varying UV intensities. Hatching rate was relatively unaffected, while newly hatched larvae were sensitive to low (ug/L) concentrations. Response was related to both PAH concentration and UV intensity. Results suggest that PAH contamination in the aquatic environment may contribute to declines in amphibian populations.

  6. Agents from amphibians with anticancer properties.

    PubMed

    Lu, Chuang-Xin; Nan, Ke-Jun; Lei, Yan

    2008-11-01

    Amphibians have been found to be a source of agents with anticancer properties. Bufalin, for example, is an anticancer agent that may induce apoptosis by its interaction with other genes and cellular components. Certain peptides with anticancer activities have been found in amphibian skin; they include magainins, aureins, citropin 1.1 and gaegurins. These peptides may exert a cytotoxic effect on human cancer cells through various mechanisms. Onconase, amphinase, cSBL (sialic acid-binding lectin purified from Rana catesbeiana eggs) and jSBL (sialic acid-binding lectin purified from Rana japonica eggs), which belong to the RNase A family, were purified from the oocyte cells and eggs of three amphibians, and they induce cytotoxicity by degrading cellular RNA. This paper discusses the medical and pharmaceutical significance of products derived from amphibians.

  7. Evolution of Life Cycles in Early Amphibians

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schoch, Rainer R.

    2009-05-01

    Many modern amphibians have biphasic life cycles with aquatic larvae and terrestrial adults. The central questions are how and when this complicated ontogeny was established, and what is known about the lives of amphibians in the Paleozoic. Fossil evidence has accumulated that sheds light on the life histories of early amphibians, the origin of metamorphosis, and the transition to a fully terrestrial existence. The majority of early amphibians were aquatic or amphibious and underwent only gradual ontogenetic changes. Developmental plasticity played a major role in some taxa but was restricted to minor modification of ontogeny. In the Permo-Carboniferous dissorophoids, a condensation of crucial ontogenetic steps into a short phase (metamorphosis) is observed. It is likely that the origin of both metamorphosis and neoteny falls within these taxa. Fossil evidence also reveals the sequence of evolutionary changes: apparently, the ontogenetic change in feeding, not the transition to a terrestrial existence per se, made a drastic metamorphosis necessary.

  8. Amphibian macrophage development and antiviral defenses.

    PubMed

    Grayfer, Leon; Robert, Jacques

    2016-05-01

    Macrophage lineage cells represent the cornerstone of vertebrate physiology and immune defenses. In turn, comparative studies using non-mammalian animal models have revealed that evolutionarily distinct species have adopted diverse molecular and physiological strategies for controlling macrophage development and functions. Notably, amphibian species present a rich array of physiological and environmental adaptations, not to mention the peculiarity of metamorphosis from larval to adult stages of development, involving drastic transformation and differentiation of multiple new tissues. Thus it is not surprising that different amphibian species and their respective tadpole and adult stages have adopted unique hematopoietic strategies. Accordingly and in order to establish a more comprehensive view of these processes, here we review the hematopoietic and monopoietic strategies observed across amphibians, describe the present understanding of the molecular mechanisms driving amphibian, an in particular Xenopus laevis macrophage development and functional polarization, and discuss the roles of macrophage-lineage cells during ranavirus infections.

  9. Amphibian macrophage development and antiviral defenses

    PubMed Central

    Grayfer, Leon; Robert, Jacques

    2015-01-01

    Macrophage lineage cells represent the cornerstone of vertebrate physiology and immune defenses. In turn, comparative studies using non-mammalian animal models have revealed that evolutionarily distinct species have adopted diverse molecular and physiological strategies for controlling macrophage development and functions. Notably, amphibian species present a rich array of physiological and environmental adaptations, not to mention the peculiarity of metamorphosis from larval to adult stages of development, involving drastic transformation and differentiation of multiple new tissues. Thus it is not surprising that different amphibian species and their respective tadpole and adult stages have adopted unique hematopoietic strategies. Accordingly and in order to establish a more comprehensive view of these processes, here we review the hematopoietic and monopoietic strategies observed across amphibians, describe the present understanding of the molecular mechanisms driving amphibian, an in particular Xenopus laevis macrophage development and functional polarization, and discuss the roles of macrophage-lineage cells during ranavirus infections. PMID:26705159

  10. Amphibians and Reptiles of Los Alamos County

    SciTech Connect

    Teralene S. Foxx; Timothy K. Haarmann; David C. Keller

    1999-10-01

    Recent studies have shown that amphibians and reptiles are good indicators of environmental health. They live in terrestrial and aquatic environments and are often the first animals to be affected by environmental change. This publication provides baseline information about amphibians and reptiles that are present on the Pajarito Plateau. Ten years of data collection and observations by researchers at Los Alamos National Laboratory, the University of New Mexico, the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish, and hobbyists are represented.

  11. The North American Amphibian Monitoring Program. [abstract

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Griffin, J.

    1998-01-01

    The North American Amphibian Monitoring Program has been under development for the past three years. The monitoring strategy for NAAMP has five main prongs: terrestrial salamander surveys, calling surveys, aquatic surveys, western surveys, and atlassing. Of these five, calling surveys were selected as one of the first implementation priorities due to their friendliness to volunteers of varying knowledge levels, relative low cost, and the fact that several groups had already pioneered the techniques involved. While some states and provinces had implemented calling surveys prior to NAAMP, like WI and IL, most states and provinces had little or no history of state/provincewide amphibian monitoring. Thus, the majority of calling survey programs were initiated in the past two years. To assess the progress of this pilot phase, a program review was conducted on the status of the NAAMP calling survey program, and the results of that review will be presented at the meeting. Topics to be discussed include: who is doing what where, extent of route coverage, the continuing random route discussions, quality assurance, strengths and weaknesses of calling surveys, reliability of data, and directions for the future. In addition, a brief overview of the DISPro project will be included. DISPro is a new amphibian monitoring program in National Parks, funded by the Demonstration of Intensive Sites Program (DISPro) through the EPA and NPS. It will begin this year at Big Bend and Shenandoah National Parks. The purpose of the DISPro Amphibian Project will be to investigate relationships between environmental factors and stressors and the distribution, abundance, and health of amphibians in these National Parks. At each Park, amphibian long-term monitoring protocols will be tested, distributions and abundance of amphibians will be mapped, and field research experiments will be conducted to examine stressor effects on amphibians (e.g., ultraviolet radiation, contaminants, acidification).

  12. Evolution of the vertebrate bone matrix: an expression analysis of the network forming collagen paralogues in amphibian osteoblasts.

    PubMed

    Aldea, Daniel; Hanna, Patricia; Munoz, David; Espinoza, Javier; Torrejon, Marcela; Sachs, Laurent; Buisine, Nicolas; Oulion, Silvan; Escriva, Hector; Marcellini, Sylvain

    2013-09-01

    The emergence of vertebrates is closely associated to the evolution of mineralized bone tissue. However, the molecular basis underlying the origin and subsequent diversification of the skeletal mineralized matrix is still poorly understood. One efficient way to tackle this issue is to compare the expression, between vertebrate species, of osteoblastic genes coding for bone matrix proteins. In this work, we have focused on the evolution of the network forming collagen family which contains the Col8a1, Col8a2, and Col10a1 genes. Both phylogeny and synteny reveal that these three paralogues are vertebrate-specific and derive from two independent duplications in the vertebrate lineage. To shed light on the evolution of this family, we have analyzed the osteoblastic expression of the network forming collagens in endochondral and intramembraneous skeletal elements of the amphibian Xenopus tropicalis. Remarkably, we find that amphibian osteoblasts express Col10a1, a gene strongly expressed in osteoblasts in actinopterygians but not in amniotes. In addition, while Col8a1 is known to be robustly expressed in mammalian osteoblasts, the expression levels of its amphibian orthologue are dramatically reduced. Our work reveals that while a skeletal expression of network forming collagen members is widespread throughout vertebrates, osteoblasts from divergent vertebrate lineages express different combinations of network forming collagen paralogues.

  13. A unified anatomy ontology of the vertebrate skeletal system.

    PubMed

    Dahdul, Wasila M; Balhoff, James P; Blackburn, David C; Diehl, Alexander D; Haendel, Melissa A; Hall, Brian K; Lapp, Hilmar; Lundberg, John G; Mungall, Christopher J; Ringwald, Martin; Segerdell, Erik; Van Slyke, Ceri E; Vickaryous, Matthew K; Westerfield, Monte; Mabee, Paula M

    2012-01-01

    The skeleton is of fundamental importance in research in comparative vertebrate morphology, paleontology, biomechanics, developmental biology, and systematics. Motivated by research questions that require computational access to and comparative reasoning across the diverse skeletal phenotypes of vertebrates, we developed a module of anatomical concepts for the skeletal system, the Vertebrate Skeletal Anatomy Ontology (VSAO), to accommodate and unify the existing skeletal terminologies for the species-specific (mouse, the frog Xenopus, zebrafish) and multispecies (teleost, amphibian) vertebrate anatomy ontologies. Previous differences between these terminologies prevented even simple queries across databases pertaining to vertebrate morphology. This module of upper-level and specific skeletal terms currently includes 223 defined terms and 179 synonyms that integrate skeletal cells, tissues, biological processes, organs (skeletal elements such as bones and cartilages), and subdivisions of the skeletal system. The VSAO is designed to integrate with other ontologies, including the Common Anatomy Reference Ontology (CARO), Gene Ontology (GO), Uberon, and Cell Ontology (CL), and it is freely available to the community to be updated with additional terms required for research. Its structure accommodates anatomical variation among vertebrate species in development, structure, and composition. Annotation of diverse vertebrate phenotypes with this ontology will enable novel inquiries across the full spectrum of phenotypic diversity.

  14. A Unified Anatomy Ontology of the Vertebrate Skeletal System

    PubMed Central

    Dahdul, Wasila M.; Balhoff, James P.; Blackburn, David C.; Diehl, Alexander D.; Haendel, Melissa A.; Hall, Brian K.; Lapp, Hilmar; Lundberg, John G.; Mungall, Christopher J.; Ringwald, Martin; Segerdell, Erik; Van Slyke, Ceri E.; Vickaryous, Matthew K.; Westerfield, Monte; Mabee, Paula M.

    2012-01-01

    The skeleton is of fundamental importance in research in comparative vertebrate morphology, paleontology, biomechanics, developmental biology, and systematics. Motivated by research questions that require computational access to and comparative reasoning across the diverse skeletal phenotypes of vertebrates, we developed a module of anatomical concepts for the skeletal system, the Vertebrate Skeletal Anatomy Ontology (VSAO), to accommodate and unify the existing skeletal terminologies for the species-specific (mouse, the frog Xenopus, zebrafish) and multispecies (teleost, amphibian) vertebrate anatomy ontologies. Previous differences between these terminologies prevented even simple queries across databases pertaining to vertebrate morphology. This module of upper-level and specific skeletal terms currently includes 223 defined terms and 179 synonyms that integrate skeletal cells, tissues, biological processes, organs (skeletal elements such as bones and cartilages), and subdivisions of the skeletal system. The VSAO is designed to integrate with other ontologies, including the Common Anatomy Reference Ontology (CARO), Gene Ontology (GO), Uberon, and Cell Ontology (CL), and it is freely available to the community to be updated with additional terms required for research. Its structure accommodates anatomical variation among vertebrate species in development, structure, and composition. Annotation of diverse vertebrate phenotypes with this ontology will enable novel inquiries across the full spectrum of phenotypic diversity. PMID:23251424

  15. Surveys of calling amphibians in North Dakota

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Johnson, D.H.; Batie, R.D.

    2001-01-01

    Amphibians have received increased attention in recent years from the scientific community and general public alike. Many populations throughout the world have declined, or have been extirpated, often without an apparent cause. Concern about the status of amphibians has translated into a growing interest in systematic and statistically sound monitoring programs. Several extensive efforts to monitor populations of calling amphibians are in place, and more are under development. Necessary for the design of appropriate surveys is an understanding of the behavior, especially vocalization, of the various species, and how it varies by geographic location and environmental conditions. In 1995 we conducted roadside surveys of calling amphibians along 44 routes in North Dakota. We describe results of that survey, with special attention given to variables that influence detectability of calling amphibians. Unlike similar studies, we accounted for the amount of time observers spent listening for amphibians under different conditions. We found that the optimal conditions for a single survey for North Dakota in that year would be in early June, between the hours of 2300 and 0130, with ambient temperatures above 13 deg. C, and with no rain and little or no wind or moonlight. Multiple surveys in a year would yield better results, of course, especially for the wood frog (Rana sylvatica), which is most active earlier in the season. Studies such as ours should be replicated in space and time to ensure a well-designed survey.

  16. Intact capture of hypervelocity particles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tsou, P.; Brownlee, D. E.; Albee, A. L.

    1986-01-01

    Knowledge of the phase, structure, and crystallography of cosmic particles, as well as their elemental and isotopic compositions, would be very valuable information toward understanding the nature of our solar system. This information can be obtained from the intact capture of large mineral grains of cosmic particles from hypervelocity impacts. Hypervelocity experiments of intact capture in underdense media have indicated realistic potential in this endeaver. The recovery of the thermal blankets and louvers from the Solar Max spacecraft have independently verified this potential in the unintended capture of cosmic materials from hypervelocity impacts. Passive underdense media will permit relatively simple and inexpensive missions to capture cosmic particles intact, either by going to a planetary body or by waiting for the particles to come to the Shuttle or the Space Station. Experiments to explore the potential of using various underdense media for an intact comet sample capture up to 6.7 km/s were performed at NASA Ames Research Center Vertical Gun Range. Explorative hypervelocity experiments up to 7.9 km/s were also made at the Ernst Mach Institute. These experiments have proven that capturing intact particles at hypervelocity impacts is definitely possible. Further research is being conducted to achieve higher capture ratios at even higher hypervelocities for even smaller projectiles.

  17. Intact capture of hypervelocity particles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsou, P.; Brownlee, D. E.; Albee, A. L.

    Knowledge of the phase, structure, and crystallography of cosmic particles, as well as their elemental and isotopic compositions, would be very valuable information toward understanding the nature of our solar system. This information can be obtained from the intact capture of large mineral grains of cosmic particles from hypervelocity impacts. Hypervelocity experiments of intact capture in underdense media have indicated realistic potential in this endeaver. The recovery of the thermal blankets and louvers from the Solar Max spacecraft have independently verified this potential in the unintended capture of cosmic materials from hypervelocity impacts. Passive underdense media will permit relatively simple and inexpensive missions to capture cosmic particles intact, either by going to a planetary body or by waiting for the particles to come to the Shuttle or the Space Station. Experiments to explore the potential of using various underdense media for an intact comet sample capture up to 6.7 km/s were performed at NASA Ames Research Center Vertical Gun Range. Explorative hypervelocity experiments up to 7.9 km/s were also made at the Ernst Mach Institute. These experiments have proven that capturing intact particles at hypervelocity impacts is definitely possible. Further research is being conducted to achieve higher capture ratios at even higher hypervelocities for even smaller projectiles.

  18. An examination of amphibian sensitivity to environmental contaminants: are amphibians poor canaries?

    PubMed

    Kerby, Jacob L; Richards-Hrdlicka, Kathryn L; Storfer, Andrew; Skelly, David K

    2010-01-01

    Nearly two decades ago, the global biodiversity crisis was catapulted to the front pages of newspapers with the recognition of worldwide amphibian declines. Amphibians earned their appellation, 'canaries in a coal mine', because of apparent high sensitivity to human-mediated environmental change. The most frequently cited causes for high susceptibility include permeable skin, a dual aquatic-terrestrial life cycle and a relatively rudimentary immune system. While some researchers have questioned the basis for the canary assertion, there has been no systematic evaluation of amphibian sensitivity to environmental challenges relative to other taxa. Here, we apply a database representing thousands of toxicity tests to compare the responses of amphibians relative to that of other taxonomic groups. The use of standardized methods combined with large numbers of identical challenges enables a particularly powerful test of relative effect size. Overall, we found that amphibians only exhibit moderate relative responses to water-borne toxins. Our findings imply that, as far as chemical contaminants are concerned, amphibians are not particularly sensitive and might more aptly be described as 'miners in a coal mine'. To the extent that amphibian declines have been mediated by chemical contaminants, our findings suggest that population losses and extinctions may have already occurred in a variety of taxa much more sensitive than amphibians.

  19. Intact capture of cosmic dust

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tsou, P.

    1991-01-01

    The focus of this development effort is to capture dust particles at hypervelocities intact and unmelted in order to preserve volatile organics. At the same time, the capture process must minimize any organic elemental or compound contamination to prevent any compromise of exobiological analyses. Inorganic silicate aerogel has been developed as a successful capture medium to satisfy both requirements of intact capture and minimal organic contamination. Up to 6 km/s, silicate projectiles from a few microns up to 100 microns have been captured intact without any melting and with minimal loss of mass. Carbon in silicate aerogel can be reduced to less than 1 part in 1000 and hydrogen 3 parts in 1000 when baked in air. Under controlled inert gas environments, additional hydrocarbon reduction can be achieved.

  20. Establishing a baseline and faunal history in amphibian monitoring programs: The amphibians of Harris Neck, GA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dodd, C.K.; Barichivich, W.J.

    2007-01-01

    We conducted an intensive inventory of Harris Neck National Wildlife Refuge in coastal Georgia to determine the feasibility of establishing an amphibian monitoring program at this location. Thirteen semi-aquatic amphibian species were identified at 21 locations. Amphibian species richness at Harris Neck was similar to that of nearby barrier islands. The amphibian fauna of Harris Neck has long been affected by human-induced landscape changes, including the inadvertent introduction of tadpoles from distant fish hatcheries and the creation of artificial impoundments. Land-use history provides important information necessary to understand current amphibian distribution, especially when census data are used to establish a baseline from which to monitor future status and trends.

  1. Countryside biogeography of Neotropical reptiles and amphibians.

    PubMed

    Mendenhall, Chase D; Frishkoff, Luke O; Santos-Barrera, Georgina; Pacheco, Jesús; Mesfun, Eyobed; Mendoza Quijano, Fernando; Ehrlich, Paul R; Ceballos, Gerardo; Daily, Gretchen C; Pringle, Robert M

    2014-04-01

    The future of biodiversity and ecosystem services depends largely on the capacity of human-dominated ecosystems to support them, yet this capacity remains largely unknown. Using the framework of countryside biogeography, and working in the Las Cruces system of Coto Brus, Costa Rica, we assessed reptile and amphibian assemblages within four habitats that typify much of the Neotropics: sun coffee plantations (12 sites), pasture (12 sites), remnant forest elements (12 sites), and a larger, contiguous protected forest (3 sites in one forest). Through analysis of 1678 captures of 67 species, we draw four primary conclusions. First, we found that the majority of reptile (60%) and amphibian (70%) species in this study used an array of habitat types, including coffee plantations and actively grazed pastures. Second, we found that coffee plantations and pastures hosted rich, albeit different and less dense, reptile and amphibian biodiversity relative to the 326-ha Las Cruces Forest Reserve and neighboring forest elements. Third, we found that the small ribbons of "countryside forest elements" weaving through farmland collectively increased the effective size of a 326-ha local forest reserve 16-fold for reptiles and 14-fold for amphibians within our 236-km2 study area. Therefore, countryside forest elements, often too small for most remote sensing techniques to identify, are contributing -95% of the available habitat for forest-dependent reptiles and amphibians in our largely human-dominated study region. Fourth, we found large and pond-reproducing amphibians to prefer human-made habitats, whereas small, stream-reproducing, and directly developing species are more dependent on forest elements. Our investigation demonstrates that tropical farming landscapes can support substantial reptile and amphibian biodiversity. Our approach provides a framework for estimating the conservation value of the complex working landscapes that constitute roughly half of the global land surface

  2. Vertebral development and amphibian evolution.

    PubMed

    Carroll, R L; Kuntz, A; Albright, K

    1999-01-01

    Amphibians provide an unparalleled opportunity to integrate studies of development and evolution through the investigation of the fossil record of larval stages. The pattern of vertebral development in modern frogs strongly resembles that of Paleozoic labyrinthodonts in the great delay in the ossification of the vertebrae, with the centra forming much later than the neural arches. Slow ossification of the trunk vertebrae in frogs and the absence of ossification in the tail facilitate the rapid loss of the tail during metamorphosis, and may reflect retention of the pattern in their specific Paleozoic ancestors. Salamanders and caecilians ossify their centra at a much earlier stage than frogs, which resembles the condition in Paleozoic lepospondyls. The clearly distinct patterns and rates of vertebral development may indicate phylogenetic separation between the ultimate ancestors of frogs and those of salamanders and caecilians within the early radiation of ancestral tetrapods. This divergence may date from the Lower Carboniferous. Comparison with the molecular regulation of vertebral development described in modern mammals and birds suggests that the rapid chondrification of the centra in salamanders relative to that of frogs may result from the earlier migration of sclerotomal cells expressing Pax1 to the area surrounding the notochord.

  3. Demographic responses of amphibians to wetland restoration in Carolina bays on the Savannah River Site.

    SciTech Connect

    Kinkead, Karen E.

    2004-09-30

    This project studied the effects of wetland restoration on amphibian populations. These wetlands were Carolina bays located on the Savannah River Site, located near Aiken, S.C. The Savannah River Site is a National Environmental Research Park owned and operated by the U.S. Department of Energy. The study sites included three reference bays (functionally intact), three control bays (with active drainage ditches), six treatment bays (restored during 2001), and four bays near two of the treatment bays (in effect creating two metapopulations).

  4. Aquatic eutrophication promotes pathogenic infection in amphibians.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Pieter T J; Chase, Jonathan M; Dosch, Katherine L; Hartson, Richard B; Gross, Jackson A; Larson, Don J; Sutherland, Daniel R; Carpenter, Stephen R

    2007-10-02

    The widespread emergence of human and wildlife diseases has challenged ecologists to understand how large-scale agents of environmental change affect host-pathogen interactions. Accelerated eutrophication of aquatic ecosystems owing to nitrogen and phosphorus enrichment is a pervasive form of environmental change that has been implicated in the emergence of diseases through direct and indirect pathways. We provide experimental evidence linking eutrophication and disease in a multihost parasite system. The trematode parasite Ribeiroia ondatrae sequentially infects birds, snails, and amphibian larvae, frequently causing severe limb deformities and mortality. Eutrophication has been implicated in the emergence of this parasite, but definitive evidence, as well as a mechanistic understanding, have been lacking until now. We show that the effects of eutrophication cascade through the parasite life cycle to promote algal production, the density of snail hosts, and, ultimately, the intensity of infection in amphibians. Infection also negatively affected the survival of developing amphibians. Mechanistically, eutrophication promoted amphibian disease through two distinctive pathways: by increasing the density of infected snail hosts and by enhancing per-snail production of infectious parasites. Given forecasted increases in global eutrophication, amphibian extinctions, and similarities between Ribeiroia and important human and wildlife pathogens, our results have broad epidemiological and ecological significance.

  5. Amphibians used in research and teaching.

    PubMed

    O'Rourke, Dorcas P

    2007-01-01

    Amphibians have long been utilized in scientific research and in education. Historically, investigators have accumulated a wealth of information on the natural history and biology of amphibians, and this body of information is continually expanding as researchers describe new species and study the behaviors of these animals. Amphibians evolved as models for a variety of developmental and physiological processes, largely due to their unique ability to undergo metamorphosis. Scientists have used amphibian embryos to evaluate the effects of toxins, mutagens, and teratogens. Likewise, the animals are invaluable in research due to the ability of some species to regenerate limbs. Certain species of amphibians have short generation times and genetic constructs that make them desirable for transgenic and knockout technology, and there is a current national focus on developing these species for genetic and genomic research. This group of vertebrates is also critically important in the investigation of the inter-relationship of humans and the environment based on their sensitivity to climatic and habitat changes and environmental contamination.

  6. Estimating terrestrial amphibian pesticide body burden through dermal exposure

    EPA Science Inventory

    Dermal exposure presents a potentially significant but understudied route for pesticide uptake in terrestrial amphibians. Our study measured dermal uptake of pesticides of varying hydrophobicity (logKow) in frogs. Amphibians were indirectly exposed to one of five pesticide active...

  7. Estimating terrestrial amphibian pesticide body burden through dermal exposure

    EPA Science Inventory

    Dermal exposure presents a potentially significant but understudied route for pesticide uptake in terrestrial amphibians. Our study measured dermal uptake of pesticides of varying hydrophobicity (logKow) in frogs. Amphibians were indirectly exposed to one of five pesticide active...

  8. Sex-linked genes and linkage maps in amphibians.

    PubMed

    Sumida, M; Nishioka1, M

    2000-06-01

    This paper reviews sex-linked genes and linkage maps in amphibians. It appears that there is no common ancestral or conserved sex-linkage group in amphibians, whereas an important proportion of other linkage groups has been conserved in amphibians. Comparisons of amphibian linkage maps with those of fishes and mammals reveal several syntenic associations apparently conserved over a very long period of vertebrate divergence.

  9. Biological Scaling Problems and Solutions in Amphibians.

    PubMed

    Levy, Daniel L; Heald, Rebecca

    2015-08-10

    Size is a primary feature of biological systems that varies at many levels, from the organism to its constituent cells and subcellular structures. Amphibians populate some of the extremes in biological size and have provided insight into scaling mechanisms, upper and lower size limits, and their physiological significance. Body size variation is a widespread evolutionary tactic among amphibians, with miniaturization frequently correlating with direct development that occurs without a tadpole stage. The large genomes of salamanders lead to large cell sizes that necessitate developmental modification and morphological simplification. Amphibian extremes at the cellular level have provided insight into mechanisms that accommodate cell-size differences. Finally, how organelles scale to cell size between species and during development has been investigated at the molecular level, because subcellular scaling can be recapitulated using Xenopus in vitro systems. Copyright © 2016 Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press; all rights reserved.

  10. Amphibian monitoring in the Atchafalaya Basin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Waddle, Hardin

    2011-01-01

    Amphibians are a diverse group of animals that includes frogs, toads, and salamanders. They are adapted to living in a variety of habitats, but most require water for at least one life stage. Amphibians have recently become a worldwide conservation concern because of declines and extinctions even in remote protected areas previously thought to be safe from the pressures of habitat loss and degradation. Amphibians are an important part of ecosystem dynamics because they can be quite abundant and serve both as a predator of smaller organisms and as prey to a suite of vertebrate predators. Their permeable skin and aquatic life history also make them useful as indicators of ecosystem health. Since 2002, the U.S. Geological Survey has been studying the frog and toad species inhabiting the Atchafalaya Basin to monitor for population declines and to better understand how the species are potentially affected by disease, environmental contaminants, and climate change.

  11. Microbiota and mucosal immunity in amphibians.

    PubMed

    Colombo, Bruno M; Scalvenzi, Thibault; Benlamara, Sarah; Pollet, Nicolas

    2015-01-01

    We know that animals live in a world dominated by bacteria. In the last 20 years, we have learned that microbes are essential regulators of mucosal immunity. Bacteria, archeas, and viruses influence different aspects of mucosal development and function. Yet, the literature mainly covers findings obtained in mammals. In this review, we focus on two major themes that emerge from the comparative analysis of mammals and amphibians. These themes concern: (i) the structure and functions of lymphoid organs and immune cells in amphibians, with a focus on the gut mucosal immune system; and (ii) the characteristics of the amphibian microbiota and its influence on mucosal immunity. Lastly, we propose to use Xenopus tadpoles as an alternative small-animal model to improve the fundamental knowledge on immunological functions of gut microbiota.

  12. Emesis and space motion sickness in amphibians.

    PubMed

    Naitoh, T; Yamashita, M; Izumi-Kurotani, A; Takabatake, I; Wassersug, R J

    2000-01-01

    Amphibians possess the ability to vomit in response to a variety of stimuli that provoke emesis in mammals. Pharmacological studies have establish that the ejection of gastric contents and the basic mechanism for vomiting have been phylogenetically conserved among these tetrapods. As part of on-going comparative studies on emesis in vertebrates, we previously documented that some postmetamorphic anurans and salamander larvae experience motion-induced emesis when exposed to the provocative stimulus of parabolic aircraft flight. However, more recent experiments suggest that there are strict conditions for inducing emesis in amphibians exposed to parabolic flight and that amphibians are not as sensitive to this stimulus as mammals. Further studies on emesis in lower vertebrates may help us understand the processes that cause emesis in abnormal gravitational regimes.

  13. Design of an Amphibian Exploring Robot

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maity, Atanu; Majumder, Somajyoti

    2014-07-01

    To design and develop an amphibian exploring robot capable of operation in constrained mine environment puts a tremendous challenge to the system developers from both scientific and engineering perspective. Very few attempts have been made to fulfil these criteria of versatility in design, communication and control. The CSIR-CMERI developed amphibian subterranean robotic explorer (SR) is capable of moving over fairly rough terrain. It can swim as well as crawl over basin floor effortlessly. It is capable of operating at a maximum depth of 10m and can swim at 1 knot. A number of field trials have been carried out for performance testing of the system to ascertain its capability in underground flooded mine tunnels. This paper presents the insight on the design of an amphibian exploring robot for mine safety and disaster mitigation with special features of low power consumption vis-a-vis high mission time.

  14. Emesis and Space Motion Sickness in Amphibians

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Naitoh, T.; Yamashita, M.; Izumi-Kurotani, A.; Takabatake, I.; Wassersug, R. J.

    Amphibians possess the ability to vomit in response to a variety of stimuli that provoke emesis in mammals. Pharmacological studies have establish that the ejection of gastric contents and the basic mechanism for vomiting have been phylogenetically conserved among these tetrapods. As part of on-going comparative studies on emesis in vertebrates, we previously documented that some postmetamorphic anurans and salamander larvae experience motion-induced emesis when exposed to the provocative stimulus of parabolic aircraft flight. However, more recent experiments suggest that there are strict conditions for inducing emesis in amphibians exposed to parabolic flight and that amphibians are not as sensitive to this stimulus as mammals. Further studies on emesis in lower vertebrates may help us understand the processes that cause emesis in abnormal gravitational regimes

  15. Estivation in South American amphibians and reptiles.

    PubMed

    Abe, A S

    1995-01-01

    A number of amphibians and reptiles have cyclic behavior, becoming inactive with the coming of the dry season. In South America this pattern of activity is common, particularly in savannah-like vegetation. During the dry season amphibians burrow into the mud or soil, and either form a cocoon or increase the osmotic concentration of body fluids to reduce evaporative water loss. Some phyllomedusid tree frogs coat their body surface with skin secretion and excrete uric acid to minimize water loss. Reptiles also retreat into shelter deep enough to avoid temperature fluctuation during estivation or reduce metabolic response to temperature. Reduction of temperature sensitivity of the metabolism seems to be a strategy common to estivating amphibians and reptiles. Despite seasonal change of the environment, some species of reptiles are active all year round.

  16. Microbiota and Mucosal Immunity in Amphibians

    PubMed Central

    Colombo, Bruno M.; Scalvenzi, Thibault; Benlamara, Sarah; Pollet, Nicolas

    2015-01-01

    We know that animals live in a world dominated by bacteria. In the last 20 years, we have learned that microbes are essential regulators of mucosal immunity. Bacteria, archeas, and viruses influence different aspects of mucosal development and function. Yet, the literature mainly covers findings obtained in mammals. In this review, we focus on two major themes that emerge from the comparative analysis of mammals and amphibians. These themes concern: (i) the structure and functions of lymphoid organs and immune cells in amphibians, with a focus on the gut mucosal immune system; and (ii) the characteristics of the amphibian microbiota and its influence on mucosal immunity. Lastly, we propose to use Xenopus tadpoles as an alternative small-animal model to improve the fundamental knowledge on immunological functions of gut microbiota. PMID:25821449

  17. Vulnerability of amphibians to climate change: implications for rangeland management

    Treesearch

    Karen E. Bagne; Deborah M. Finch; Megan M. Friggens

    2011-01-01

    Many amphibian populations have declined drastically in recent years due to a large number of factors including the emerging threat of climate change (Wake 2007). Rangelands provide important habitat for amphibians. In addition to natural wetlands, stock tanks and other artificial water catchments provide habitat for many amphibian species (Euliss et al. 2004).

  18. Differential host susceptibility to Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, an emerging amphibian pathogen

    Treesearch

    C.L. Searle; S.S. Gervasi; J. Hua; J.I. Hammond; R.A. Relyea; D.H. Olson; A.R. Blaustein

    2011-01-01

    The amphibian fungal pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) has received considerable attention due to its role in amphibian population declines worldwide. Although many amphibian species appear to be affected by Bd, there is little information on species-specific differences in susceptibility to this pathogen. We used a comparative...

  19. Amphibians and wildfire in the U.S. Northwest

    Treesearch

    Blake R. Hossack

    2006-01-01

    Recent evidence of amphibian declines along with outbreaks of large wildfires in western North American conifer forests has underscored our lack of knowledge about effects of fire on amphibians in these ecosystems. Understanding the connection between amphibian declines and wildfire is proving complex in some areas because the past century of fire suppression and other...

  20. Skeletal Scintigraphy

    PubMed Central

    McDougall, I. Ross

    1979-01-01

    Skeletal scintigraphy, using phosphates or diphosphonates labeled with technetium 99m, is a sensitive method of detecting bone abnormalities. The most important and most frequent role of bone scanning is evaluating the skeletal areas in patients who have a primary cancer, especially a malignant condition that has a tendency to spread to bone areas. The bone scan is superior to bone radiographs in diagnosing these abnormalities; 15 percent to 25 percent of patients with breast, prostate or lung cancer, who have normal roentgenograms, also have abnormal scintigrams due to metastases. The majority of bone metastases appear as hot spots on the scan and are easily recognized. The incidence of abnormal bone scans in patients with early stages (I and II) of breast cancer varies from 6 percent to 26 percent, but almost invariably those patients with scan abnormalities have a poor prognosis and should be considered for additional therapies. Progression or regression of bony lesions can be defined through scanning, and abnormal areas can be identified for biopsy. The incidence of metastases in solitary scan lesions in patients with known primary tumors varies from 20 percent to 64 percent. Bone scintigraphy shows positive uptake in 95 percent of cases with acute osteomyelitis. Stress fractures and trauma suspected in battered babies can be diagnosed by scanning before there is radiological evidence. The procedure is free from acute or long-term side effects and, except in cases of very young patients, sedation is seldom necessary. Although the test is sensitive, it is not specific and therefore it is difficult to overemphasize the importance of clinical, radiographic, biochemical and scanning correlation in each patient. ImagesFigure 2.Figure 3.Figure 4.Figure 5.Figure 6.Figure 7.Figure 8.Figure 9.Figure 10. PMID:390886

  1. Amphibians as model to study endocrine disrupters.

    PubMed

    Kloas, Werner; Lutz, Ilka

    2006-10-13

    Environmental compounds can interfere with endocrine systems of wildlife and humans. These so-called endocrine disrupters (ED) are known to affect reproductive biology and thyroid system. The classical model species for these endocrine systems are amphibians and therefore they can serve as sentinels for detection of the modes of action (MOAs) of ED. Recently, amphibians are being reviewed as suitable models to assess (anti)estrogenic and (anti)androgenic MOAs influencing reproductive biology as well as (anti)thyroidal MOAs interfering with the thyroid system. The development of targeted bioassays in combination with adequate chemical analyses is the prerequisite for a concise risk assessment of ED.

  2. Common procedures in reptiles and amphibians.

    PubMed

    de la Navarre, Byron J S

    2006-05-01

    Reptiles and amphibians continue to be popular as pets in the United States and throughout the world. It therefore behooves veterinarians interested in caring for these exotic species to continually gather knowledge concerning both their proper husbandry and the conditions that require medical and/or surgical intervention. This article covers husbandry, physical examination, and clinical and diagnostic techniques in an effort to present guidelines for the evaluation of the reptile or amphibian patient. Gathering clinical data will aid veterinarians in arriving at the proper diagnosis,increasing the chances of success with treatment protocols, and educating the clients in proper nutrition and husbandry for their pets.

  3. Monitoring Intact Viruses Using Aptamers.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Penmetcha K R

    2016-08-04

    Viral diagnosis and surveillance are necessary steps in containing the spread of viral diseases, and they help in the deployment of appropriate therapeutic interventions. In the past, the commonly employed viral detection methods were either cell-culture or molecule-level assays. Most of these assays are laborious and expensive, require special facilities, and provide a slow diagnosis. To circumvent these limitations, biosensor-based approaches are becoming attractive, especially after the successful commercialization of glucose and other biosensors. In the present article, I have reviewed the current progress using the biosensor approach for detecting intact viruses. At the time of writing this review, three types of bioreceptor surfaces (antibody-, glycan-, and aptamer-based) have been explored on different sensing platforms for detecting intact viruses. Among these bioreceptors, aptamer-based sensors have been increasingly explored for detecting intact viruses using surface plasmon resonance (SPR) and other platforms. Special emphasis is placed on the aptamer-based SPR platform in the present review.

  4. Monitoring Intact Viruses Using Aptamers

    PubMed Central

    Kumar, Penmetcha K. R.

    2016-01-01

    Viral diagnosis and surveillance are necessary steps in containing the spread of viral diseases, and they help in the deployment of appropriate therapeutic interventions. In the past, the commonly employed viral detection methods were either cell-culture or molecule-level assays. Most of these assays are laborious and expensive, require special facilities, and provide a slow diagnosis. To circumvent these limitations, biosensor-based approaches are becoming attractive, especially after the successful commercialization of glucose and other biosensors. In the present article, I have reviewed the current progress using the biosensor approach for detecting intact viruses. At the time of writing this review, three types of bioreceptor surfaces (antibody-, glycan-, and aptamer-based) have been explored on different sensing platforms for detecting intact viruses. Among these bioreceptors, aptamer-based sensors have been increasingly explored for detecting intact viruses using surface plasmon resonance (SPR) and other platforms. Special emphasis is placed on the aptamer-based SPR platform in the present review. PMID:27527230

  5. The state of amphibians in the United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Muths, E.; Adams, M.J.; Grant, E.H.C.; Miller, D.; Corn, P.S.; Ball, L.C.

    2012-01-01

    More than 25 years ago, scientists began to identify unexplained declines in amphibian populations around the world. Much has been learned since then, but amphibian declines have not abated and the interactions among the various threats to amphibians are not clear. Amphibian decline is a problem of local, national, and international scope that can affect ecosystem function, biodiversity, and commerce. This fact sheet provides a snapshot of the state of the amphibians and introduces examples to illustrate the range of issues in the United States.

  6. Helping Your Local Amphibians (HYLA): An Internet-based Amphibian Course for Educators.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Murphy, Tony P.

    2001-01-01

    Introduces an online zoology course that was offered primarily to upper elementary and middle school teachers in which teachers were expected to take action to help the local amphibian population. (Author/YDS)

  7. Helping Your Local Amphibians (HYLA): An Internet-based Amphibian Course for Educators.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Murphy, Tony P.

    2001-01-01

    Introduces an online zoology course that was offered primarily to upper elementary and middle school teachers in which teachers were expected to take action to help the local amphibian population. (Author/YDS)

  8. Prevalence of the amphibian pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in stream and wetland amphibians in Maryland, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Campbell Grant, Evan H.; Bailey, Larissa L.; Ware, Joy L.; Duncan, Karen L.

    2008-01-01

    The amphibian chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, responsible for the potentially fatal amphibian disease chytridiomycosis, is known to occur in a large and ever increasing number of amphibian populations around the world. However, sampling has been biased towards stream- and wetland-breeding anurans, with little attention paid to stream-associated salamanders. We sampled three frog and three salamander species in the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historic Park, Maryland, by swabbing animals for PCR analysis to detect DNA of B. dendrobatidis. Using PCR, we detected B. dendrobatidis DNA in both stream and wetland amphibians, and report here the first occurrence of the pathogen in two species of stream-associated salamanders. Future research should focus on mechanisms within habitats that may affect persistence and dissemination of B. dendrobatidis among stream-associated salamanders

  9. The role of amphibian antimicrobial peptides in protection of amphibians from pathogens linked to global amphibian declines.

    PubMed

    Rollins-Smith, Louise A

    2009-08-01

    Amphibian species have experienced population declines and extinctions worldwide that are unprecedented in recent history. Many of these recent declines have been linked to a pathogenic skin fungus, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, or to iridoviruses of the genus Ranavirus. One of the first lines of defense against pathogens that enter by way of the skin are antimicrobial peptides synthesized and stored in dermal granular glands and secreted into the mucus following alarm or injury. Here, I review what is known about the capacity of amphibian antimicrobial peptides from diverse amphibians to inhibit B. dendrobatidis or ranavirus infections. When multiple species were compared for the effectiveness of their in vitro antimicrobial peptides defenses against B. dendrobatidis, non-declining species of rainforest amphibians had more effective antimicrobial peptides than species in the same habitat that had recently experienced population declines. Further, there was a significant correlation between the effectiveness of the antimicrobial peptides and resistance of the species to experimental infection. These studies support the hypothesis that antimicrobial peptides are an important component of innate defenses against B. dendrobatidis. Some amphibian antimicrobial peptides inhibit ranavirus infections and infection of human T lymphocytes by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). An effective antimicrobial peptide defense against skin pathogens appears to depend on a diverse array of genes expressing antimicrobial peptides. The production of antimicrobial peptides may be regulated by signals from the pathogens. However, this defense must also accommodate potentially beneficial microbes on the skin that compete or inhibit growth of the pathogens. How this delicate balancing act is accomplished is an important area of future research.

  10. Presence of the amphibian chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in native amphibians exported from Madagascar.

    PubMed

    Kolby, Jonathan E

    2014-01-01

    The emerging infectious disease chytridiomycosis is driven by the spread of amphibian chytrid fungus (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, Bd), a highly virulent pathogen threatening global amphibian biodiversity. Although pandemic in distribution, previous intensive field surveys have failed to detect Bd in Madagascar, a biodiversity hotspot home to hundreds of endemic amphibian species. Due to the presence of Bd in nearby continental Africa and the ecological crisis that can be expected following establishment in Madagascar, enhanced surveillance is imperative. I sampled 565 amphibians commercially exported from Madagascar for the presence of Bd upon importation to the USA, both to assist early detection efforts and demonstrate the conservation potential of wildlife trade disease surveillance. Bd was detected in three animals via quantitative PCR: a single Heterixalus alboguttatus, Heterixalus betsileo, and Scaphiophryne spinosa. This is the first time Bd has been confirmed in amphibians from Madagascar and presents an urgent call to action. Our early identification of pathogen presence prior to widespread infection provides the necessary tools and encouragement to catalyze a swift, targeted response to isolate and eradicate Bd from Madagascar. If implemented before establishment occurs, an otherwise likely catastrophic decline in amphibian biodiversity may be prevented.

  11. Presence of the Amphibian Chytrid Fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in Native Amphibians Exported from Madagascar

    PubMed Central

    Kolby, Jonathan E.

    2014-01-01

    The emerging infectious disease chytridiomycosis is driven by the spread of amphibian chytrid fungus (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, Bd), a highly virulent pathogen threatening global amphibian biodiversity. Although pandemic in distribution, previous intensive field surveys have failed to detect Bd in Madagascar, a biodiversity hotspot home to hundreds of endemic amphibian species. Due to the presence of Bd in nearby continental Africa and the ecological crisis that can be expected following establishment in Madagascar, enhanced surveillance is imperative. I sampled 565 amphibians commercially exported from Madagascar for the presence of Bd upon importation to the USA, both to assist early detection efforts and demonstrate the conservation potential of wildlife trade disease surveillance. Bd was detected in three animals via quantitative PCR: a single Heterixalus alboguttatus, Heterixalus betsileo, and Scaphiophryne spinosa. This is the first time Bd has been confirmed in amphibians from Madagascar and presents an urgent call to action. Our early identification of pathogen presence prior to widespread infection provides the necessary tools and encouragement to catalyze a swift, targeted response to isolate and eradicate Bd from Madagascar. If implemented before establishment occurs, an otherwise likely catastrophic decline in amphibian biodiversity may be prevented. PMID:24599336

  12. Biogeography of amphibians and reptiles in Arizona

    Treesearch

    Eric W. Stitt; Theresa M. Mau-Crimmins; Don E. Swann

    2005-01-01

    We examined patterns of species richness for amphibians and reptiles in Arizona and evaluated patterns in species distribution between ecoregions based on species range size. In Arizona, the Sonoran Desert has the highest herpetofauna diversity, and the southern ecoregions are more similar than other regions. There appear to be distinct low- and mid-elevational...

  13. ELASTICITY ANALYSIS OF AMPHIBIAN LIFE HISTORIES

    EPA Science Inventory

    By comparing life history parameters (e.g., age at metamorphosis, age at sexual maturation, egg number, longevity) and phenology of different species, we gain valuable insight into why growth rates differ across populations. Although the demography of most amphibians is lacking, ...

  14. Life history of amphibians and gravity.

    PubMed

    Naitoh, Tomio; Yamashita, Masamichi; Wassersug, Richard J

    2004-11-01

    Anurans hold a unique position in vertebrate phylogeny, as they made the major transition from water to land. Through evolution they have acquired fundamental mechanisms to adapt to terrestrial gravity. Such mechanisms are now shared among other terrestrial vertebrates derived from ancestral amphibians. Space research, using amphibians as a model animal, is significant based on the following aspects: (1) Anuran amphibians show drastic changes in their living niche during their metamorphosis. Environments for tadpoles and for terrestrial life of frogs are quite different in terms of gravity and its associated factors. (2) Certain tadpoles, such as Rhacophorus viridis amamiensis, have a transparent abdominal wall. Thus visceral organs and their motion can be observed in these animals in non-invasive manner through their transparent abdominal skin. This feature enables biologists to evaluate the physiological state of these amphibians and study the autonomic control of visceral organs. It is also feasible for space biologists to examine how such autonomic regulation could be altered by microgravity and exposure to the space environment.

  15. Amphibian Population Sensitivity to Environmental and ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Anticipating chronic effects of contaminant exposure on amphibian species is complicated both by toxicological and ecological uncertainty. Data for both chemical exposures and amphibian vital rates, including altered growth, are sparse. Developmental plasticity in amphibians further complicates evaluation of chemical impacts as metamorphosis is also influenced by other biotic and abiotic stressors, such as temperature, hydroperiod, predation, and conspecific density. Determining the effect of delayed tadpole development on survival through metamorphosis and subsequent recruitment must include possible effects of pond drying accelerating metamorphosis near the end of the larval stage. This model considers the combined influence of delayed onset of metamorphosis in a cohort as well as accelerated metamorphosis toward the end of the hydroperiod and determines the net influence of counteracting forces on tadpole development and survival. Amphibian populations with greater initial density dependence have less capacity for developmental plasticity and are therefore more vulnerable to delayed development and reduced hydroperiod. The consequential reduction in larval survival has a relatively greater impact on species with a shorter lifespan, allowing for fewer breeding seasons during which to successfully produce offspring. In response to risk assessment approaches that consider only survival and reproductive endpoints in population evaluation, we calculate conta

  16. Culture of Cells from Amphibian Embryos.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stanisstreet, Martin

    1983-01-01

    Describes a method for in vitro culturing of cells from amphibian early embryos. Such cells can be used to demonstrate such properties of eukaryote cells as cell motility, adhesion, differentiation, and cell sorting into tissues. The technique may be extended to investigate other factors. (Author/JN)

  17. Relictual amphibians and old-growth forest

    Treesearch

    H.H. Welsh

    1990-01-01

    Terrestrial and aquatic herpetofauna were sampled by pitfall traps, time-constrained searches, and areaconstrained searches (stream sites only) over a three-year period to examine the importance of forest age to amphibians and reptiles. Fifty-four terrestrial and 39 aquatic sites in Douglas-fir-dominated, mixed evergreen forests were located in southwestern Oregon and...

  18. ELASTICITY ANALYSIS OF AMPHIBIAN LIFE HISTORIES

    EPA Science Inventory

    By comparing life history parameters (e.g., age at metamorphosis, age at sexual maturation, egg number, longevity) and phenology of different species, we gain valuable insight into why growth rates differ across populations. Although the demography of most amphibians is lacking, ...

  19. Sampling methods for terrestrial amphibians and reptiles.

    Treesearch

    Paul Stephen Corn; R. Bruce. Bury

    1990-01-01

    Methods described for sampling amphibians and reptiles in Douglas-fir forests in the Pacific Northwest include pitfall trapping, time-constrained collecting, and surveys of coarse woody debris. The herpetofauna of this region differ in breeding and nonbreeding habitats and vagility, so that no single technique is sufficient for a community study. A combination of...

  20. Culture of Cells from Amphibian Embryos.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stanisstreet, Martin

    1983-01-01

    Describes a method for in vitro culturing of cells from amphibian early embryos. Such cells can be used to demonstrate such properties of eukaryote cells as cell motility, adhesion, differentiation, and cell sorting into tissues. The technique may be extended to investigate other factors. (Author/JN)

  1. Amphibian pathogens in Southeast Asian frog trade.

    PubMed

    Gilbert, Martin; Bickford, David; Clark, Leanne; Johnson, Arlyne; Joyner, Priscilla H; Ogg Keatts, Lucy; Khammavong, Kongsy; Nguyễn Văn, Long; Newton, Alisa; Seow, Tiffany P W; Roberton, Scott; Silithammavong, Soubanh; Singhalath, Sinpakhone; Yang, Angela; Seimon, Tracie A

    2012-12-01

    Amphibian trade is known to facilitate the geographic spread of pathogens. Here we assess the health of amphibians traded in Southeast Asia for food or as pets, focusing on Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), ranavirus and general clinical condition. Samples were collected from 2,389 individual animals at 51 sites in Lao PDR, Cambodia, Vietnam and Singapore for Bd screening, and 74 animals in Cambodia and Vietnam for ranavirus screening. Bd was found in one frog (n = 347) in Cambodia and 13 in Singapore (n = 419). No Bd was found in Lao PDR (n = 1,126) or Vietnam (n = 497), and no ranavirus was found in Cambodia (n = 70) or Vietnam (n = 4). Mild to severe dermatological lesions were observed in all East Asian bullfrogs Hoplobatrachus rugolosus (n = 497) sampled in farms in Vietnam. Histologic lesions consistent with sepsis were found within the lesions of three frogs and bacterial sepsis in two (n = 4); one had Gram-negative bacilli and one had acid-fast organisms consistent with mycobacterium sp. These results confirm that Bd is currently rare in amphibian trade in Southeast Asia. The presence of Mycobacterium-associated disease in farmed H. rugolosus is a cause for concern, as it may have public health implications and indicates the need for improved biosecurity in amphibian farming and trade.

  2. Managing Amphibian Disease with Skin Microbiota.

    PubMed

    Woodhams, Douglas C; Bletz, Molly; Kueneman, Jordan; McKenzie, Valerie

    2016-03-01

    The contribution of emerging amphibian diseases to the sixth mass extinction is driving innovative wildlife management strategies, including the use of probiotics. Bioaugmentation of the skin mucosome, a dynamic environment including host and microbial components, may not provide a generalized solution. Multi-omics technologies and ecological context underlie effective implementation.

  3. Managing Amphibian Disease with Skin Microbiota.

    PubMed

    Woodhams, Douglas C; Bletz, Molly; Kueneman, Jordan; McKenzie, Valerie

    2016-01-16

    The contribution of emerging amphibian diseases to the sixth mass extinction is driving innovative wildlife management strategies, including the use of probiotics. Bioaugmentation of the skin mucosome, a dynamic environment including host and microbial components, may not provide a generalized solution. Multi-omics technologies and ecological context underlie effective implementation.

  4. Universal COI primers for DNA barcoding amphibians.

    PubMed

    Che, Jing; Chen, Hong-Man; Yang, Jun-Xiao; Jin, Jie-Qiong; Jiang, Ke; Yuan, Zhi-Yong; Murphy, Robert W; Zhang, Ya-Ping

    2012-03-01

    DNA barcoding is a proven tool for the rapid and unambiguous identification of species, which is essential for many activities including the vouchering tissue samples in the genome 10K initiative, genealogical reconstructions, forensics and biodiversity surveys, among many other applications. A large-scale effort is underway to barcode all amphibian species using the universally sequenced DNA region, a partial fragment of mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase subunit I COI. This fragment is desirable because it appears to be superior to 16S for barcoding, at least for some groups of salamanders. The barcoding of amphibians is essential in part because many species are now endangered. Unfortunately, existing primers for COI often fail to achieve this goal. Herein, we report two new pairs of primers (➀, ➁) that in combination serve to universally amplify and sequence all three orders of Chinese amphibians as represented by 36 genera. This taxonomic diversity, which includes caecilians, salamanders and frogs, suggests that the new primer pairs will universally amplify COI for the vast majority species of amphibians.

  5. Histological image data of limb skeletal tissue from larval and adult Ambystoma mexicanum.

    PubMed

    McCusker, Catherine D; Diaz-Castillo, Carlos; Sosnik, Julian; Phan, Anne; Gardiner, David M

    2016-09-01

    The data presented in this article are related to the article entitled "Cartilage and bone cells do not participate in skeletal regeneration in Ambystoma mexicanum limbs" [1]. Here we present image data of the post-embryonic development of the forelimb skeletal tissue of Ambystoma Mexicanum. Histological staining was performed on sections from the intact limbs of young (6.5 cm) and old (25 cm) animals, and on dissected skeletal tissues (cartilage, bone, and periosteum) from these animals.

  6. A simple and rapid method to characterize lipid fate in skeletal muscle.

    PubMed

    Massart, Julie; Zierath, Juleen R; Chibalin, Alexander V

    2014-06-24

    Elevated fatty acids contribute to the development of type 2 diabetes and affect skeletal muscle insulin sensitivity. Since elevated intramuscular lipids and insulin resistance is strongly correlated, aberrant lipid storage or lipid intermediates may be involved in diabetes pathogenesis. The aim of this study was to develop a method to determine the dynamic metabolic fate of lipids in primary human skeletal muscle cells and in intact mouse skeletal muscle. We report a simple and fast method to characterize lipid profiles in skeletal muscle using thin layer chromatography. The described method was specifically developed to assess lipid utilization in cultured and intact skeletal muscle. We determined the effect of a pan-diacylglycerol kinase (DGK) class I inhibitor (R59949) on lipid metabolism to validate the method. In human skeletal muscle cells, DGK inhibition impaired diacylglycerol (DAG) conversion to phosphatidic acid and increased triglyceride synthesis. In intact glycolytic mouse skeletal muscle, DGK inhibition triggered the accumulation of DAG species. Conversely, the DGK inhibitor did not affect DAG content in oxidative muscle. This simple assay detects rapid changes in the lipid species composition of skeletal muscle with high sensitivity and specificity. Determination of lipid metabolism in skeletal muscle may further elucidate the mechanisms contributing to the pathogenesis of insulin resistance in type 2 diabetes or obesity.

  7. A simple and rapid method to characterize lipid fate in skeletal muscle

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Elevated fatty acids contribute to the development of type 2 diabetes and affect skeletal muscle insulin sensitivity. Since elevated intramuscular lipids and insulin resistance is strongly correlated, aberrant lipid storage or lipid intermediates may be involved in diabetes pathogenesis. The aim of this study was to develop a method to determine the dynamic metabolic fate of lipids in primary human skeletal muscle cells and in intact mouse skeletal muscle. We report a simple and fast method to characterize lipid profiles in skeletal muscle using thin layer chromatography. Findings The described method was specifically developed to assess lipid utilization in cultured and intact skeletal muscle. We determined the effect of a pan-diacylglycerol kinase (DGK) class I inhibitor (R59949) on lipid metabolism to validate the method. In human skeletal muscle cells, DGK inhibition impaired diacylglycerol (DAG) conversion to phosphatidic acid and increased triglyceride synthesis. In intact glycolytic mouse skeletal muscle, DGK inhibition triggered the accumulation of DAG species. Conversely, the DGK inhibitor did not affect DAG content in oxidative muscle. Conclusion This simple assay detects rapid changes in the lipid species composition of skeletal muscle with high sensitivity and specificity. Determination of lipid metabolism in skeletal muscle may further elucidate the mechanisms contributing to the pathogenesis of insulin resistance in type 2 diabetes or obesity. PMID:24962347

  8. Establishing causality in the decline and deformity of amphibians: The amphibian research and monitoring initiative model

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Little, E.E.; Bridges, C.M.; Linder, G.; Boone, M.; ,

    2003-01-01

    Research to date has indicated that a range of environmental variables such as disease, parasitism, predation, competition, environmental contamination, solar ultraviolet radiation, climate change, or habitat alteration may be responsible for declining amphibian populations and the appearance of deformed organisms, yet in many cases no definitive environmental variable stands out as a causal factor. Multiple Stressors are often present in the habitat, and interactions among these can magnify injury to biota. This raises the possibility that the additive or synergistic impact of these Stressors may be the underlying cause of amphibian declines. Effective management for the restoration of amphibian populations requires the identification of causal factors contributing to their declines. A systematic approach to determine causality is especially important because initial impressions may be misleading or ambiguous. In addition, the evaluation of amphibian populations requires consideration of a broader spatial scale than commonly used in regulatory monitoring. We describe a systematic three-tiered approach to determine causality in amphibian declines and deformities. Tier 1 includes an evaluation of historic databases and extant data and would involve a desktop synopsis of the status of various stressors as well as site visits. Tier 2 studies are iterative, hypothesis driven studies beginning with general tests and continuing with analyses of increasing complexity as certain stressors are identified for further investigation. Tier 3 applies information developed in Tier 2 as predictive indicators of habitats and species at risk over broad landscape scales and provides decision support for the adaptive management of amphibian recovery. This comprehensive, tiered program could provide a mechanistic approach to identifying and addressing specific stressors responsible for amphibian declines across various landscapes.

  9. Amphibians as animal models for laboratory research in physiology.

    PubMed

    Burggren, Warren W; Warburton, Stephen

    2007-01-01

    The concept of animal models is well honored, and amphibians have played a prominent part in the success of using key species to discover new information about all animals. As animal models, amphibians offer several advantages that include a well-understood basic physiology, a taxonomic diversity well suited to comparative studies, tolerance to temperature and oxygen variation, and a greater similarity to humans than many other currently popular animal models. Amphibians now account for approximately 1/4 to 1/3 of lower vertebrate and invertebrate research, and this proportion is especially true in physiological research, as evident from the high profile of amphibians as animal models in Nobel Prize research. Currently, amphibians play prominent roles in research in the physiology of musculoskeletal, cardiovascular, renal, respiratory, reproductive, and sensory systems. Amphibians are also used extensively in physiological studies aimed at generating new insights in evolutionary biology, especially in the investigation of the evolution of air breathing and terrestriality. Environmental physiology also utilizes amphibians, ranging from studies of cryoprotectants for tissue preservation to physiological reactions to hypergravity and space exploration. Amphibians are also playing a key role in studies of environmental endocrine disruptors that are having disproportionately large effects on amphibian populations and where specific species can serve as sentinel species for environmental pollution. Finally, amphibian genera such as Xenopus, a genus relatively well understood metabolically and physiologically, will continue to contribute increasingly in this new era of systems biology and "X-omics."

  10. Skeletal limb abnormalities

    MedlinePlus

    ... medlineplus.gov/ency/article/003170.htm Skeletal limb abnormalities To use the sharing features on this page, please enable JavaScript. Skeletal limb abnormalities refers to a variety of bone structure problems ...

  11. Intact capture of hypervelocity projectiles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tsou, P.

    1990-01-01

    The ability to capture projectiles intact at hypervelocities opens new applications in science and technology that would either not be possible or would be very costly by other means. This capability has been demonstrated in the laboratory for aluminum projectiles of 1.6 mm diameter, captured at 6 km/s, in one unmelted piece, and retaining up to 95% of the original mass. Furthermore, capture was accomplished passively using microcellular underdense polymer foam. Another advantage of capturing projectiles in an underdense medium is the ability of such a medium to preserve a record of the projectile's original velocity components of speed and direction. A survey of these experimental results is described in terms of a dozen parameters which characterize the amount of capture and the effect on the projectile due to different capture media.

  12. Intact capture of hypervelocity projectiles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tsou, P.

    1990-01-01

    The ability to capture projectiles intact at hypervelocities opens new applications in science and technology that would either not be possible or would be very costly by other means. This capability has been demonstrated in the laboratory for aluminum projectiles of 1.6 mm diameter, captured at 6 km/s, in one unmelted piece, and retaining up to 95% of the original mass. Furthermore, capture was accomplished passively using microcellular underdense polymer foam. Another advantage of capturing projectiles in an underdense medium is the ability of such a medium to preserve a record of the projectile's original velocity components of speed and direction. A survey of these experimental results is described in terms of a dozen parameters which characterize the amount of capture and the effect on the projectile due to different capture media.

  13. Intact capture of hypervelocity projectiles.

    PubMed

    Tsou, P

    1990-01-01

    The ability to capture projectiles intact at hypervelocities opens new applications in science and technology that would either not be possible or would be very costly by other means. This capability has been demonstrated in the laboratory for aluminum projectiles of 1.6 mm diameter, captured at 6 km/s, in one unmelted piece, and retaining up to 95% of the original mass. Furthermore, capture was accomplished passively using microcellular underdense polymer foam. Another advantage of capturing projectiles in an underdense medium is the ability of such a medium to preserve a record of the projectile's original velocity components of speed and direction. A survey of these experimental results is described in terms of a dozen parameters which characterize the amount of capture and the effect on the projectile due to different capture media.

  14. [Application of ND-FISH in amphibians].

    PubMed

    Chang, Xiao-Ai; Xia, Yun; Zeng, Xiao-Mao

    2013-12-01

    The recently popularized non-denaturing fluorescence in situ hybridization (ND-FISH) is a new technique that is both quick and efficient, in part because denaturing of both of the probes and the chromosomes is unnecessary. Synthetic simple sequence repeats (SSRs) labeled with fluorescein are used as probes to detect SSR-enriched chromosome regions and provide markers to identify the chromosomes. To date this method has not been applied to amphibians, even though the polymorphism of the distribution of SSRs may help to advance genetic polymorphism research. This paper also improved the double-colour FISH method by simultaneously using probes labelled with fluorescein and probes labelled with DIG to get double-color signals. This study found 5 SSRs markers that may be useful in the polymorphism research, and that the amphibian chromosomes must be denatured in ND-FISH.

  15. Neurosteroid Biosynthesis in the Brain of Amphibians

    PubMed Central

    Vaudry, Hubert; Do Rego, Jean-Luc; Burel, Delphine; Luu-The, Van; Pelletier, Georges; Vaudry, David; Tsutsui, Kazuyoshi

    2011-01-01

    Amphibians have been widely used to investigate the synthesis of biologically active steroids in the brain and the regulation of neurosteroid production by neurotransmitters and neuropeptides. The aim of the present review is to summarize the current knowledge regarding the neuroanatomical distribution and biochemical activity of steroidogenic enzymes in the brain of anurans and urodeles. The data accumulated over the past two decades demonstrate that discrete populations of neurons and/or glial cells in the frog and newt brains express the major steroidogenic enzymes and are able to synthesize de novo a number of neurosteroids from cholesterol/pregnenolone. Since neurosteroidogenesis has been conserved during evolution from amphibians to mammals, it appears that neurosteroids must play important physiological functions in the central nervous system of vertebrates. PMID:22649387

  16. Research proceedings on amphibian model organisms

    PubMed Central

    LIU, Lu-Sha; ZHAO, Lan-Ying; WANG, Shou-Hong; JIANG, Jian-Ping

    2016-01-01

    Model organisms have long been important in biology and medicine due to their specific characteristics. Amphibians, especially Xenopus, play key roles in answering fundamental questions on developmental biology, regeneration, genetics, and toxicology due to their large and abundant eggs, as well as their versatile embryos, which can be readily manipulated and developed in vivo. Furthermore, amphibians have also proven to be of considerable benefit in human disease research due to their conserved cellular developmental and genomic organization. This review gives a brief introduction on the progress and limitations of these animal models in biology and human disease research, and discusses the potential and challenge of Microhyla fissipes as a new model organism. PMID:27469255

  17. Direct and indirect effects of climate change on amphibian populations

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Blaustein, Andrew R.; Walls, Susan C.; Bancroft, Betsy A.; Lawler, Joshua J.; Searle, Catherine L.; Gervasi, Stephanie S.

    2010-01-01

    As part of an overall decline in biodiversity, populations of many organisms are declining and species are being lost at unprecedented rates around the world. This includes many populations and species of amphibians. Although numerous factors are affecting amphibian populations, we show potential direct and indirect effects of climate change on amphibians at the individual, population and community level. Shifts in amphibian ranges are predicted. Changes in climate may affect survival, growth, reproduction and dispersal capabilities. Moreover, climate change can alter amphibian habitats including vegetation, soil, and hydrology. Climate change can influence food availability, predator-prey relationships and competitive interactions which can alter community structure. Climate change can also alter pathogen-host dynamics and greatly influence how diseases are manifested. Changes in climate can interact with other stressors such as UV-B radiation and contaminants. The interactions among all these factors are complex and are probably driving some amphibian population declines and extinctions.

  18. Emerging infectious diseases and amphibian population declines.

    PubMed Central

    Daszak, P.; Berger, L.; Cunningham, A. A.; Hyatt, A. D.; Green, D. E.; Speare, R.

    1999-01-01

    We review recent research on the pathology, ecology, and biogeography of two emerging infectious wildlife diseases, chytridiomycosis and ranaviral disease, in the context of host-parasite population biology. We examine the role of these diseases in the global decline of amphibian populations and propose hypotheses for the origins and impact of these panzootics. Finally, we discuss emerging infectious diseases as a global threat to wildlife populations. PMID:10603206

  19. Amphibians as research models for regenerative medicine

    PubMed Central

    Song, Fengyu; Li, Bingbing

    2010-01-01

    The ability to regenerate bone across a critical size defect would be a marked clinical advance over current methods for dealing with such structural gaps. Here, we briefly review the development of limb bones and the mandible, the regeneration of urodele limbs after amputation, and present evidence that urodele and anuran amphibians represent a valuable research model for the study of segment defect regeneration in both limb bones and mandible. PMID:21197215

  20. Reproduction and larval rearing of amphibians.

    PubMed

    Browne, Robert K; Zippel, Kevin

    2007-01-01

    Reproduction technologies for amphibians are increasingly used for the in vitro treatment of ovulation, spermiation, oocytes, eggs, sperm, and larvae. Recent advances in these reproduction technologies have been driven by (1) difficulties with achieving reliable reproduction of threatened species in captive breeding programs, (2) the need for the efficient reproduction of laboratory model species, and (3) the cost of maintaining increasing numbers of amphibian gene lines for both research and conservation. Many amphibians are particularly well suited to the use of reproduction technologies due to external fertilization and development. However, due to limitations in our knowledge of reproductive mechanisms, it is still necessary to reproduce many species in captivity by the simulation of natural reproductive cues. Recent advances in reproduction technologies for amphibians include improved hormonal induction of oocytes and sperm, storage of sperm and oocytes, artificial fertilization, and high-density rearing of larvae to metamorphosis. The storage of sperm in particular can both increase the security and reduce the cost of maintaining genetic diversity. It is possible to cryopreserve sperm for millennia, or store it unfrozen for weeks in refrigerators. The storage of sperm can enable multiple parentages of individual females' clutches of eggs and reduce the need to transport animals. Cryopreserved sperm can maintain the gene pool indefinitely, reduce the optimum number of males in captive breeding programs, and usher in new generations of Xenopus spp. germ lines for research. Improved in vitro fertilization using genetic diversity from stored sperm means that investigators need the oocytes from only a few females to produce genetically diverse progeny. In both research and captive breeding programs, it is necessary to provide suitable conditions for the rearing of large numbers of a diverse range of species. Compared with traditional systems, the raising of larvae

  1. Langerhans-like cells in amphibian epidermis.

    PubMed

    Carrillo-Farga, J; Castell, A; Pérez, A; Rondán, A

    1990-10-01

    Langerhans cells have been described in epidermis and other stratified epithelia of mammals. In other vertebrates equivalent cells have not been found. Amphibians show skin graft rejection, so it is possible that these animals have epidermal cells homologous to Langerhans cells. In this work we demonstrate the existence of ATPase-positive dendritic cells in frog epidermis that are similar ultrastructurally to mammalian Langerhans cells, except for the absence of Birbeck granules.

  2. Apoptosis in amphibian organs during metamorphosis

    PubMed Central

    Ishizuya-Oka, Atsuko; Hasebe, Takashi; Shi, Yun-Bo

    2012-01-01

    During amphibian metamorphosis, the larval tissues/organs rapidly degenerate to adapt from the aquatic to the terrestrial life. At the cellular level, a large quantity of apoptosis occurs in a spatiotemporally-regulated fashion in different organs to ensure timely removal of larval organs/tissues and the development of adult ones for the survival of the individuals. Thus, amphibian metamorphosis provides us a good opportunity to understand the mechanisms regulating apoptosis. To investigate this process at the molecular level, a number of thyroid hormone (TH) response genes have been isolated from several organs of Xenopus laevis tadpoles and their expression and functional analyses are now in progress using modern molecular and genetic technologies. In this review, we will first summarize when and where apoptosis occurs in typical larva-specific and larval-to-adult remodeling amphibian organs to highlight that the timing of apoptosis is different in different tissues/organs, even though all are induced by the same circulating TH. Next, to discuss how TH spatiotemporally regulates the apoptosis, we will focus on apoptosis of the X. laevis small intestine, one of the best characterized remodeling organs. Functional studies of TH response genes using transgenic frogs and culture techniques have shown that apoptosis of larval epithelial cells can be induced by TH either cell-autonomously or indirectly through interactions with extracellular matrix (ECM) components of the underlying basal lamina. Here, we propose that multiple intra- and extracellular apoptotic pathways are coordinately controlled by TH to ensure massive but well-organized apoptosis, which is essential for the proper progression of amphibian metamorphosis. PMID:20238476

  3. Bent's Old Fort: Amphibians and Reptiles

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Muths, E.

    2008-01-01

    Bent's Old Fort National Historic Site sits along the Arkansas River in the semi-desert prairie of southeastern Colorado. The USGS provided assistance in designing surveys to assess the variety of herpetofauna (amphibians and reptiles) resident at this site. This brochure is the results of those efforts and provides visitors with information on what frogs, toads, snakes and salamanders might be seen and heard at Bent's Old Fort.

  4. Environmental persistence of amphibian and reptilian ranaviruses.

    PubMed

    Nazir, J; Spengler, M; Marschang, R E

    2012-04-26

    Ranaviruses infect fish, amphibians, and reptiles. The present study was conducted to compare the persistence of amphibian and reptilian ranaviruses in a pond habitat. The 4 viruses used in this study included 2 amphibian ranaviruses, Frog virus 3 (FV3, the type species of the genus Ranavirus) and an isolate from a frog, and 2 ranaviruses of reptilian origin (from a tortoise and from a gecko). A sandwich germ-carrier technique was used to study the persistence of these viruses in sterile and unsterile pond water (PW) and soil obtained from the bank of a pond. For each virus, virus-loaded carriers were placed in each of the 3 substrates, incubated at 4 and 20°C, and titrated at regular intervals. Serial data were analyzed using a linear regression model to calculate T-90 values (time required for 90% reduction in the virus titer). Resistance of the viruses to drying was also studied. All 4 viruses were resistant to drying. At 20°C, T-90 values of the viruses were 22 to 31 d in sterile PW and 22 to 34 d in unsterile PW. Inactivation of all 4 viruses in soil at this temperature appeared to be non-linear. T-90 values at 4°C were 102 to 182 d in sterile PW, 58 to 72 d in unsterile PW, and 30 to 48 d in soil. Viral persistence was highest in the sterile PW, followed by the unsterile PW, and was lowest in soil. There were no significant differences in the survival times between the amphibian and reptilian viruses. The results of the present study suggest that ranaviruses can survive for long periods of time in pond habitats at low temperatures.

  5. Amphibian molecular ecology and how it has informed conservation.

    PubMed

    McCartney-Melstad, Evan; Shaffer, H Bradley

    2015-10-01

    Molecular ecology has become one of the key tools in the modern conservationist's kit. Here we review three areas where molecular ecology has been applied to amphibian conservation: genes on landscapes, within-population processes, and genes that matter. We summarize relevant analytical methods, recent important studies from the amphibian literature, and conservation implications for each section. Finally, we include five in-depth examples of how molecular ecology has been successfully applied to specific amphibian systems. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  6. United States Marine Corps Assault Amphibian Vehicle Egress Study

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-06-01

    CORPS ASSAULT AMPHIBIAN VEHICLE EGRESS STUDY by Jason T. Ford June 2014 Thesis Advisor: Lawrence G. Shattuck Second Reader: Lyn R...COVERED Master’s Thesis 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS ASSAULT AMPHIBIAN VEHICLE EGRESS STUDY 5. FUNDING NUMBERS 6. AUTHOR(S...program, the Marine Corps have begun developing the Amphibious Combat Vehicle (ACV) to replace the 42-year-old Assault Amphibian Vehicle (AAV). Because

  7. Wetland management for amphibians in the Willamette Valley

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Adams, Michael J.; Pearl, Christopher A.; Bury, R. Bruce

    2004-01-01

    Introduction In the past two decades, scientists around the world have increasingly noted losses of amphibian populations. Many of these declines have occurred in protected areas like national parks, where the causes mostly remain mysterious. However, in multipleuse landscapes, resource managers frequently face more obvious conservation problems and must make decisions that will affect amphibians. The purpose of this fact sheet is to present recent findings pertinent to wetland management and amphibians in a multiple-use landscape.

  8. Ranavirus outbreaks in amphibian populations of northern Idaho

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Russell, Danelle M.; Goldberg, Caren S.; Sprague, Laura; Waits, Lisette P.; Green, D. Earl; Schuler, Krysten L.; Rosenblum, Erica Bree

    2011-01-01

    Ranavirus outbreaks, caused by pathogens in the genus Ranavirus (Family Iridoviridae), were the largest single cause of reported amphibian mass mortality events in the United States from 1996–2001 (Green et al. 2002). Mortality events associated with ranaviruses have been documented on five continents and throughout the latitudes and elevations where amphibians occur (Gray et al. 2009). However, the threat of ranaviruses to amphibian and reptile populations in specific regions is still largely unknown (Chinchar 2002; Gray et al. 2009).

  9. Pesticide Detection in Rainwater, Stemflow, and Amphibians from Agricultural Spray Drift in Southern Georgia, USA

    EPA Science Inventory

    Amphibians are important sentinel environmental species since they integrate stressors from both aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. Pesticides are well established as a significant stressor for amphibians. In order to study spray-drift contributions to amphibian habitats, pestic...

  10. Pesticide Uptake Across the Amphibian Dermis Through Soil and Overspray Exposures

    EPA Science Inventory

    For terrestrial amphibians, accumulation ofpesticides through dermal contact is a primary route ofexposure in agricultural landscapes and may be contributingto widespread amphibian declines. To show pesticidetransfer across the amphibian dermis at permitted labelapplication rates...

  11. Pesticide Detection in Rainwater, Stemflow, and Amphibians from Agricultural Spray Drift in Southern Georgia, USA

    EPA Science Inventory

    Amphibians are important sentinel environmental species since they integrate stressors from both aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. Pesticides are well established as a significant stressor for amphibians. In order to study spray-drift contributions to amphibian habitats, pestic...

  12. Pesticide Uptake Across the Amphibian Dermis Through Soil and Overspray Exposures

    EPA Science Inventory

    For terrestrial amphibians, accumulation ofpesticides through dermal contact is a primary route ofexposure in agricultural landscapes and may be contributingto widespread amphibian declines. To show pesticidetransfer across the amphibian dermis at permitted labelapplication rates...

  13. Amphibian Population Sensitivity to Environmental and Anthropogenic Impacts on Larval Development and Survival

    EPA Science Inventory

    Anticipating chronic effects of contaminant exposure on amphibian species is complicated both by toxicological and ecological uncertainty. Data for both chemical exposures and amphibian vital rates, including altered growth, are sparse. Developmental plasticity in amphibians fu...

  14. AmphibiaChina: an online database of Chinese Amphibians.

    PubMed

    Che, Jing; Wang, Kai

    2016-01-18

    AmphibiaChina, an open-access, web-based database, is designed to provide comprehensive and up-to-date information on Chinese amphibians. It offers an integrated module with six major sections. Compared to other known databases including AmphibiaWeb and Amphibian Species of the World, AmphibiaChina has the following new functions: (1) online species identification based on DNA barcode sequences; (2) comparisons and discussions of different major taxonomic systems; and (3) phylogenetic progress on Chinese amphibians. This database offers a window for the world to access available information of Chinese amphibians. AmphibiaChina with its Chinese version can be accessed at http://www.amphibiachina.org.

  15. Analgesia in Amphibians: Preclinical Studies and Clinical Applications

    PubMed Central

    Stevens, Craig W.

    2010-01-01

    SYNOPSIS Preclinical studies of analgesia in amphibians or recommendations for clinical use of analgesics in amphibian species are extremely limited. This article briefly reviews the issues surrounding the use of analgesics in amphibians starting with common definitions of pain and analgesia when applied to non-human animals. Nociceptive and endogenous opioid systems in amphibians are reviewed and results of preclinical research on opioid and non-opioid analgesics summarized. Recommended opioid and non-opioid analgesics are summarized and practical recommendations made for their clinical use. PMID:21074701

  16. Status and trends of amphibian declines and extinctions worldwide.

    PubMed

    Stuart, Simon N; Chanson, Janice S; Cox, Neil A; Young, Bruce E; Rodrigues, Ana S L; Fischman, Debra L; Waller, Robert W

    2004-12-03

    The first global assessment of amphibians provides new context for the well-publicized phenomenon of amphibian declines. Amphibians are more threatened and are declining more rapidly than either birds or mammals. Although many declines are due to habitat loss and overutilization, other, unidentified processes threaten 48% of rapidly declining species and are driving species most quickly to extinction. Declines are nonrandom in terms of species' ecological preferences, geographic ranges, and taxonomic associations and are most prevalent among Neotropical montane, stream-associated species. The lack of conservation remedies for these poorly understood declines means that hundreds of amphibian species now face extinction.

  17. Measuring mitochondrial respiration in intact single muscle fibers

    PubMed Central

    Schuh, Rosemary A.; Jackson, Kathryn C.; Khairallah, Ramzi J.; Ward, Christopher W.

    2012-01-01

    Measurement of mitochondrial function in skeletal muscle is a vital tool for understanding regulation of cellular bioenergetics. Currently, a number of different experimental approaches are employed to quantify mitochondrial function, with each involving either mechanically or chemically induced disruption of cellular membranes. Here, we describe a novel approach that allows for the quantification of substrate-induced mitochondria-driven oxygen consumption in intact single skeletal muscle fibers isolated from adult mice. Specifically, we isolated intact muscle fibers from the flexor digitorum brevis muscle and placed the fibers in culture conditions overnight. We then quantified oxygen consumption rates using a highly sensitive microplate format. Peak oxygen consumption rates were significantly increased by 3.4-fold and 2.9-fold by simultaneous stimulation with the uncoupling agent, carbonyl cyanide p-(trifluoromethoxy)phenylhydrazone (FCCP), and/or pyruvate or palmitate exposure, respectively. However, when calculating the total oxygen consumed over the entire treatment, palmitate exposure resulted in significantly more oxygen consumption compared with pyruvate. Further, as proof of principle for the procedure, we isolated fibers from the mdx mouse model, which has known mitochondrial deficits. We found significant reductions in initial and peak oxygen consumption of 51% and 61% compared with fibers isolated from the wild-type (WT) animals, respectively. In addition, we determined that fibers isolated from mdx mice exhibited less total oxygen consumption in response to the FCCP + pyruvate stimulation compared with the WT mice. This novel approach allows the user to make mitochondria-specific measures in a nondisrupted muscle fiber that has been isolated from a whole muscle. PMID:22160545

  18. Measuring mitochondrial respiration in intact single muscle fibers.

    PubMed

    Schuh, Rosemary A; Jackson, Kathryn C; Khairallah, Ramzi J; Ward, Christopher W; Spangenburg, Espen E

    2012-03-15

    Measurement of mitochondrial function in skeletal muscle is a vital tool for understanding regulation of cellular bioenergetics. Currently, a number of different experimental approaches are employed to quantify mitochondrial function, with each involving either mechanically or chemically induced disruption of cellular membranes. Here, we describe a novel approach that allows for the quantification of substrate-induced mitochondria-driven oxygen consumption in intact single skeletal muscle fibers isolated from adult mice. Specifically, we isolated intact muscle fibers from the flexor digitorum brevis muscle and placed the fibers in culture conditions overnight. We then quantified oxygen consumption rates using a highly sensitive microplate format. Peak oxygen consumption rates were significantly increased by 3.4-fold and 2.9-fold by simultaneous stimulation with the uncoupling agent, carbonyl cyanide p-(trifluoromethoxy)phenylhydrazone (FCCP), and/or pyruvate or palmitate exposure, respectively. However, when calculating the total oxygen consumed over the entire treatment, palmitate exposure resulted in significantly more oxygen consumption compared with pyruvate. Further, as proof of principle for the procedure, we isolated fibers from the mdx mouse model, which has known mitochondrial deficits. We found significant reductions in initial and peak oxygen consumption of 51% and 61% compared with fibers isolated from the wild-type (WT) animals, respectively. In addition, we determined that fibers isolated from mdx mice exhibited less total oxygen consumption in response to the FCCP + pyruvate stimulation compared with the WT mice. This novel approach allows the user to make mitochondria-specific measures in a nondisrupted muscle fiber that has been isolated from a whole muscle.

  19. Triton shells of intact erythrocytes.

    PubMed

    Sheetz, M P; Sawyer, D

    1978-01-01

    About 40% of human erythrocyte membrane protein is resistant to solubilization in 0.5% Triton X-114. These components comprise a structure called a Triton shell roughly similar in size and shape to the original erythrocyte and thus constitute a cytoskeleton. With increasing concentrations of Triton the lipid content of the Triton shell decreases dramatically, whereas the majority of the protein components remain constant. Exceptions to this rule include proteins contained in band 3, the presumed anion channel, and in band 4 which decrease with increasing Triton concentration. The Triton-insoluble complex includes spectrin (bands 1 and 2), actin (band 5), and bands 3' and 7. Component 3' has an apparent molecular weight of 88,000 daltons as does 3; but unlike 3, it is insensitive to protease treatment of the intact cell, has a low extinction coefficient at 280 nm, and is solubilized from the shells in alkaline water solutions. Component 7 also has a low extinction coefficient at 280 nm. Spectrin alone is solubilized from the Triton shells in isotonic media. The solubilized spectrin contains no bound Triton and coelectrophoreses with spectrin eluted in hypotonic solutions from ghosts. Electron micrographs of fixed Triton shells stained with uranyl acetate show the presence of numerous filaments which appear beaded and are 80--120 A in diameter. The filaments cannot be composed mainly af actin, but enough spectrin is present to form the filaments. Triton shells may provide an excellent source of material useful in the investigation of the erythrocyte cytoskeleton.

  20. Intact Transition Epitope Mapping (ITEM)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yefremova, Yelena; Opuni, Kwabena F. M.; Danquah, Bright D.; Thiesen, Hans-Juergen; Glocker, Michael O.

    2017-08-01

    Intact transition epitope mapping (ITEM) enables rapid and accurate determination of protein antigen-derived epitopes by either epitope extraction or epitope excision. Upon formation of the antigen peptide-containing immune complex in solution, the entire mixture is electrosprayed to translate all constituents as protonated ions into the gas phase. There, ions from antibody-peptide complexes are separated from unbound peptide ions according to their masses, charges, and shapes either by ion mobility drift or by quadrupole ion filtering. Subsequently, immune complexes are dissociated by collision induced fragmentation and the ion signals of the "complex-released peptides," which in effect are the epitope peptides, are recorded in the time-of-flight analyzer of the mass spectrometer. Mixing of an antibody solution with a solution in which antigens or antigen-derived peptides are dissolved is, together with antigen proteolysis, the only required in-solution handling step. Simplicity of sample handling and speed of analysis together with very low sample consumption makes ITEM faster and easier to perform than other experimental epitope mapping methods.

  1. Global rates of habitat loss and implications for amphibian conservation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gallant, A.L.; Klaver, R.W.; Casper, G.S.; Lannoo, M.J.

    2007-01-01

    A large number of factors are known to affect amphibian population viability, but most authors agree that the principal causes of amphibian declines are habitat loss, alteration, and fragmentation. We provide a global assessment of land use dynamics in the context of amphibian distributions. We accomplished this by compiling global maps of amphibian species richness and recent rates of change in land cover, land use, and human population growth. The amphibian map was developed using a combination of published literature and digital databases. We used an ecoregion framework to help interpret species distributions across environmental, rather than political, boundaries. We mapped rates of land cover and use change with statistics from the World Resources Institute, refined with a global digital dataset on land cover derived from satellite data. Temporal maps of human population were developed from the World Resources Institute database and other published sources. Our resultant map of amphibian species richness illustrates that amphibians are distributed in an uneven pattern around the globe, preferring terrestrial and freshwater habitats in ecoregions that are warm and moist. Spatiotemporal patterns of human population show that, prior to the 20th century, population growth and spread was slower, most extensive in the temperate ecoregions, and largely exclusive of major regions of high amphibian richness. Since the beginning of the 20th century, human population growth has been exponential and has occurred largely in the subtropical and tropical ecoregions favored by amphibians. Population growth has been accompanied by broad-scale changes in land cover and land use, typically in support of agriculture. We merged information on land cover, land use, and human population growth to generate a composite map showing the rates at which humans have been changing the world. When compared with the map of amphibian species richness, we found that many of the regions of the

  2. Conceptual Design for the Amphibian Research and Monitoring Initiative (ARMI)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Battaglin, W. A.; Langtimm, C. A.; Adams, M. J.; Gallant, A. L.; James, D. L.

    2001-12-01

    In 2000, the President of the United States (US) and Congress directed Department of Interior (DOI) agencies to develop a program for monitoring trends in amphibian populations on DOI lands and to conduct research into causes of declines. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) was given lead responsibility for planning and implementing the Amphibian Research and Monitoring Initiative (ARMI) in cooperation with the National Park Service (NPS), Fish and Wildlife Service, and Bureau of Land Management. The program objectives are to (1) establish a network for monitoring the status and distribution of amphibian species on DOI lands; (2) identify and monitor environmental conditions known to affect amphibian populations; (3) conduct research on causes of amphibian population change and malformations; and (4) provide information to resource managers, policy makers, and the public in support of amphibian conservation. The ARMI program will integrate research efforts of USGS, other Federal, and non-federal herpetologists, hydrologists, and geographers across the Nation. ARMI will conduct a small number (~20) of intensive research efforts (for example, studies linking amphibian population changes to hydrologic conditions) and a larger number (~50) of more generalized inventory and monitoring studies encompassing broader areas such as NPS units. ARMI will coordinate with and try to augment other amphibian inventory studies such as the National Amphibian Atlas and the North American Amphibian Monitoring Program. ARMI will develop and test protocols for the standardized collection of amphibian data and provide a centrally managed database designed to simplify data entry, retrieval, and analysis. ARMI pilot projects are underway at locations across the US.

  3. Global rates of habitat loss and implications for amphibian conservation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gallant, A.L.; Klaver, R.W.; Casper, G.S.; Lannoo, M.J.

    2007-01-01

    A large number of factors are known to affect amphibian population viability, but most authors agree that the principal causes of amphibian declines are habitat loss, alteration, and fragmentation. We provide a global assessment of land use dynamics in the context of amphibian distributions. We accomplished this by compiling global maps of amphibian species richness and recent rates of change in land cover, land use, and human population growth. The amphibian map was developed using a combination of published literature and digital databases. We used an ecoregion framework to help interpret species distributions across environmental, rather than political, boundaries. We mapped rates of land cover and use change with statistics from the World Resources Institute, refined with a global digital dataset on land cover derived from satellite data. Temporal maps of human population were developed from the World Resources Institute database and other published sources. Our resultant map of amphibian species richness illustrates that amphibians are distributed in an uneven pattern around the globe, preferring terrestrial and freshwater habitats in ecoregions that are warm and moist. Spatiotemporal patterns of human population show that, prior to the 20th century, population growth and spread was slower, most extensive in the temperate ecoregions, and largely exclusive of major regions of high amphibian richness. Since the beginning of the 20th century, human population growth has been exponential and has occurred largely in the subtropical and tropical ecoregions favored by amphibians. Population growth has been accompanied by broad-scale changes in land cover and land use, typically in support of agriculture. We merged information on land cover, land use, and human population growth to generate a composite map showing the rates at which humans have been changing the world. When compared with the map of amphibian species richness, we found that many of the regions of the

  4. Intramembrane charge movement and sarcoplasmic calcium release in enzymatically isolated mammalian skeletal muscle fibres.

    PubMed Central

    Szentesi, P; Jacquemond, V; Kovács, L; Csernoch, L

    1997-01-01

    1. Single muscle fibres were dissociated enzymatically from the extensor digitorum longus and communis muscles of rats and guinea-pigs. The fibres were mounted into a double Vaseline gap experimental chamber and the events in excitation-contraction coupling were studied under voltage clamp conditions. 2. The voltage dependence of intramembrane charge movement followed a two-state Boltzmann distribution with maximal available charge of 26.1 +/- 1.5 and 26.1 +/- 1.3 nC microF-1, mid-point voltage of -35.1 +/- 5.0 and -42.2 +/- 1.2 mV and steepness of 16.7 +/- 2.2 and 17.0 +/- 1.9 mV (means +/- S.E.M., n = 7 and 4) in rats and guinea-pigs, respectively. 3. Intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca2+]i) was monitored using the calcium-sensitive dyes antipyrylazo III, fura-2 and mag-fura-5. Resting [Ca2+]i was similar in rats and guinea-pigs with 125 +/- 18 and 115 +/- 8 nM (n = 10 and 9), respectively, while the maximal increase for a 100 ms depolarization to 0 mV was larger in rats (6.3 +/- 1.0 microM; n = 7), than in guinea-pigs (2.8 +/- 0.3; n = 4). 4. The rate of calcium release (Rrel) from the sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) displayed an early peak followed by a fast and a slow decline to a quasi maintained steady level. After normalizing Rrel to the estimated SR calcium content (1.2 +/- 0.1 and 0.9 +/- 0.1 mM in rats and guinea-pigs, respectively) and correcting for depletion of calcium in the SR the peak and steady levels at 0 mV, respectively, were found to be 2.50 +/- 0.08 and 0.81 +/- 0.06% ms-1 in rats and 2.43 +/- 0.25 and 0.88 +/- 0.01% ms-1 in guinea-pigs. The voltage dependence was essentially the same in both species, but different from that in amphibians. 5. These experiments show that enzymatic isolation yields functionally intact mammalian skeletal muscle fibres for Vaseline gap experiments. The data also suggest a close connection in the regulation of the different kinetic components of SR calcium release in mammalian skeletal muscle. PMID:9423180

  5. Meeting ultraviolet B radiation requirements of amphibians in captivity: a case study with mountain chicken frogs (Leptodactylus fallax) and general recommendations for pre-release health screening.

    PubMed

    Tapley, Benjamin; Rendle, Matthew; Baines, Frances M; Goetz, Matthias; Bradfield, Kay S; Rood, David; Lopez, Javier; Garcia, Gerardo; Routh, Andrew

    2015-01-01

    Conservation breeding programmes are a tool used to prevent amphibian extinctions. The husbandry requirements of amphibians are complex. Ongoing research is needed to ensure optimal management of those captive-bred animals destined, in particular, for reintroduction. The UV-B and vitamin D3 requirements of amphibians are largely unknown. Metabolic bone disease has been reported in a number of species. These include the Critically Endangered mountain chicken frog (Leptodactylus fallax) reared in captivity on diets supplemented with a high-calcium multivitamin and mineral supplement containing vitamin D3 but without UV-B provision. Captive-bred L. fallax being reared for reintroduction to Montserrat were provided with UV-B radiation from metamorphosis and were fed on insects supplemented with vitamins and minerals. Overlapping heat, light and UV-B gradients were provided, mimicking what we believe best represents the natural situation and thereby facilitated self-regulation of UV-B exposure. A subset of 10 frogs was periodically radiographed to assess skeletal health. Radiographic bone density and anatomical integrity appeared unremarkable when compared with a wild caught L. fallax. In addition to other routine health-screening, we recommend that radiography be performed to a structured schedule on a subset of all captive-bred and reared amphibians to assess skeletal health and to gauge the appropriateness of captive husbandry. We demonstrate here that, through the appropriate provision of a combination of both UV-B radiation and dietary supplementation, L. fallax can be bred and reared in captivity with healthy skeletal development. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  6. Rapid Response to Evaluate the Presence of Amphibian Chytrid Fungus (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis) and Ranavirus in Wild Amphibian Populations in Madagascar

    PubMed Central

    Kolby, Jonathan E.; Smith, Kristine M.; Ramirez, Sara D.; Rabemananjara, Falitiana; Pessier, Allan P.; Brunner, Jesse L.; Goldberg, Caren S.; Berger, Lee; Skerratt, Lee F.

    2015-01-01

    We performed a rapid response investigation to evaluate the presence and distribution of amphibian pathogens in Madagascar following our identification of amphibian chytrid fungus (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, Bd) and ranavirus in commercially exported amphibians. This targeted risk-based field surveillance program was conducted from February to April 2014 encompassing 12 regions and 47 survey sites. We simultaneously collected amphibian and environmental samples to increase survey sensitivity and performed sampling both in wilderness areas and commercial amphibian trade facilities. Bd was not detected in any of 508 amphibian skin swabs or 68 water filter samples, suggesting pathogen prevalence was below 0.8%, with 95% confidence during our visit. Ranavirus was detected in 5 of 97 amphibians, including one adult Mantidactylus cowanii and three unidentified larvae from Ranomafana National Park, and one adult Mantidactylus mocquardi from Ankaratra. Ranavirus was also detected in water samples collected from two commercial amphibian export facilities. We also provide the first report of an amphibian mass-mortality event observed in wild amphibians in Madagascar. Although neither Bd nor ranavirus appeared widespread in Madagascar during this investigation, additional health surveys are required to disentangle potential seasonal variations in pathogen abundance and detectability from actual changes in pathogen distribution and rates of spread. Accordingly, our results should be conservatively interpreted until a comparable survey effort during winter months has been performed. It is imperative that biosecurity practices be immediately adopted to limit the unintentional increased spread of disease through the movement of contaminated equipment or direct disposal of contaminated material from wildlife trade facilities. The presence of potentially introduced strains of ranaviruses suggests that Madagascar's reptile species might also be threatened by disease

  7. Rapid Response to Evaluate the Presence of Amphibian Chytrid Fungus (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis) and Ranavirus in Wild Amphibian Populations in Madagascar.

    PubMed

    Kolby, Jonathan E; Smith, Kristine M; Ramirez, Sara D; Rabemananjara, Falitiana; Pessier, Allan P; Brunner, Jesse L; Goldberg, Caren S; Berger, Lee; Skerratt, Lee F

    2015-01-01

    We performed a rapid response investigation to evaluate the presence and distribution of amphibian pathogens in Madagascar following our identification of amphibian chytrid fungus (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, Bd) and ranavirus in commercially exported amphibians. This targeted risk-based field surveillance program was conducted from February to April 2014 encompassing 12 regions and 47 survey sites. We simultaneously collected amphibian and environmental samples to increase survey sensitivity and performed sampling both in wilderness areas and commercial amphibian trade facilities. Bd was not detected in any of 508 amphibian skin swabs or 68 water filter samples, suggesting pathogen prevalence was below 0.8%, with 95% confidence during our visit. Ranavirus was detected in 5 of 97 amphibians, including one adult Mantidactylus cowanii and three unidentified larvae from Ranomafana National Park, and one adult Mantidactylus mocquardi from Ankaratra. Ranavirus was also detected in water samples collected from two commercial amphibian export facilities. We also provide the first report of an amphibian mass-mortality event observed in wild amphibians in Madagascar. Although neither Bd nor ranavirus appeared widespread in Madagascar during this investigation, additional health surveys are required to disentangle potential seasonal variations in pathogen abundance and detectability from actual changes in pathogen distribution and rates of spread. Accordingly, our results should be conservatively interpreted until a comparable survey effort during winter months has been performed. It is imperative that biosecurity practices be immediately adopted to limit the unintentional increased spread of disease through the movement of contaminated equipment or direct disposal of contaminated material from wildlife trade facilities. The presence of potentially introduced strains of ranaviruses suggests that Madagascar's reptile species might also be threatened by disease

  8. Multi-level detection of toxic stress in the mudpuppy (amphibian, salamander)

    SciTech Connect

    Gendron, A.D.; Fortin, R.; Hontela, A.; Bishop, C.A.; Van Der Kraak, G.

    1994-12-31

    Worldwide reports of declining amphibian populations highlight the need for ecotoxicological research on amphibians. The authors have investigated the response to toxic stress in the mudpuppy. Sites (N = 9) along mixed pollution gradients in the St. Lawrence/Ottawa Rivers systems were sampled on two consecutive winters (1992-93). Elevated concentrations of organochlorine pesticides, PCBs, and PCDFs detected in female gonads at the most contaminated sites, led the investigation toward signs of reproductive dysfunction. High levels of skeletal deformities were observed in the most polluted group where mudpuppies were found significantly more at risk to develop limb defects than at the reference site. The frequencies of terata, including oligodactyly and polydactyly, significantly increased with the intensity of exposure to recognized teratogens, in the St. Lawrence River system. The finding of deformities in adults could signal a more important impact during early life stages. The shift toward older t the most impacted site suggest a decrease in recruitment, that is consistent with lower survival of embryos developing under a toxic stress. Among site differences in other indicators of reproductive performance such as fecundity, gonado-somatic indices, circulating levels of 17{beta}-estradiol, testosterone, and corticosterone in females with vitellogenic eggs, were not detected.

  9. 46 CFR 174.185 - Intact stability.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 46 Shipping 7 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Intact stability. 174.185 Section 174.185 Shipping COAST GUARD, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY (CONTINUED) SUBDIVISION AND STABILITY SPECIAL RULES PERTAINING TO SPECIFIC VESSEL TYPES Special Rules Pertaining to Offshore Supply Vessels § 174.185 Intact stability. (a...

  10. 46 CFR 172.070 - Intact stability.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 46 Shipping 7 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Intact stability. 172.070 Section 172.070 Shipping COAST GUARD, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY (CONTINUED) SUBDIVISION AND STABILITY SPECIAL RULES PERTAINING TO... § 172.070 Intact stability. All tank vessels of 5,000 DWT and above contracted after the effective date...

  11. 46 CFR 172.070 - Intact stability.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 46 Shipping 7 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Intact stability. 172.070 Section 172.070 Shipping COAST GUARD, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY (CONTINUED) SUBDIVISION AND STABILITY SPECIAL RULES PERTAINING TO... § 172.070 Intact stability. All tank vessels of 5,000 deadweight tons (DWT) and above, contracted after...

  12. 46 CFR 174.015 - Intact stability.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 46 Shipping 7 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Intact stability. 174.015 Section 174.015 Shipping COAST GUARD, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY (CONTINUED) SUBDIVISION AND STABILITY SPECIAL RULES PERTAINING TO SPECIFIC VESSEL TYPES Special Rules Pertaining to Deck Cargo Barges § 174.015 Intact stability. (a) Except...

  13. 46 CFR 174.015 - Intact stability.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 46 Shipping 7 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Intact stability. 174.015 Section 174.015 Shipping COAST GUARD, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY (CONTINUED) SUBDIVISION AND STABILITY SPECIAL RULES PERTAINING TO SPECIFIC VESSEL TYPES Special Rules Pertaining to Deck Cargo Barges § 174.015 Intact stability. (a) Except...

  14. 46 CFR 172.070 - Intact stability.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 46 Shipping 7 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Intact stability. 172.070 Section 172.070 Shipping COAST GUARD, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY (CONTINUED) SUBDIVISION AND STABILITY SPECIAL RULES PERTAINING TO... § 172.070 Intact stability. All tank vessels of 5,000 deadweight tons (DWT) and above, contracted after...

  15. 46 CFR 172.070 - Intact stability.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 46 Shipping 7 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Intact stability. 172.070 Section 172.070 Shipping COAST GUARD, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY (CONTINUED) SUBDIVISION AND STABILITY SPECIAL RULES PERTAINING TO... § 172.070 Intact stability. All tank vessels of 5,000 deadweight tons (DWT) and above, contracted after...

  16. 46 CFR 174.185 - Intact stability.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 46 Shipping 7 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Intact stability. 174.185 Section 174.185 Shipping COAST GUARD, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY (CONTINUED) SUBDIVISION AND STABILITY SPECIAL RULES PERTAINING TO SPECIFIC VESSEL TYPES Special Rules Pertaining to Offshore Supply Vessels § 174.185 Intact stability. (a...

  17. 46 CFR 172.070 - Intact stability.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 46 Shipping 7 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Intact stability. 172.070 Section 172.070 Shipping COAST GUARD, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY (CONTINUED) SUBDIVISION AND STABILITY SPECIAL RULES PERTAINING TO... § 172.070 Intact stability. All tank vessels of 5,000 deadweight tons (DWT) and above, contracted after...

  18. Amphibian Oasis: Designing and Building a Schoolyard Pond.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gosselin, Heather; Johnson, Bob

    1996-01-01

    Building a pond in a schoolyard is a rewarding way to help boost local populations of amphibians, to increase the natural value of school grounds, and to serve as a locale for observing the life cycles of plants, invertebrates, and amphibians. This article outlines important considerations in designing and building a pond from siting through…

  19. All about Amphibians. Animal Life for Children. [Videotape].

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    2000

    This videotape teaches children about their favorite amphibious creatures, as well as amphibians' nearest cousins--toads, newts, and salamanders. Young students discover how these amazing creatures can live both in and out of water, learn about the amphibious life cycle, and compare the differences between amphibians and reptiles. This videotape…

  20. Overview of chytrid emergence and impacts on amphibians.

    PubMed

    Lips, Karen R

    2016-12-05

    Chytridiomycosis is an emerging infectious disease of amphibians that affects over 700 species on all continents where amphibians occur. The amphibian-chytridiomycosis system is complex, and the response of any amphibian species to chytrid depends on many aspects of the ecology and evolutionary history of the amphibian, the genotype and phenotype of the fungus, and how the biological and physical environment can mediate that interaction. Impacts of chytridiomycosis on amphibians are varied; some species have been driven extinct, populations of others have declined severely, whereas still others have not obviously declined. Understanding patterns and mechanisms of amphibian responses to chytrids is critical for conservation and management. Robust estimates of population numbers are needed to identify species at risk, prioritize taxa for conservation actions, design management strategies for managing populations and species, and to develop effective measures to reduce impacts of chytrids on amphibians.This article is part of the themed issue 'Tackling emerging fungal threats to animal health, food security and ecosystem resilience'.

  1. MOJAVE DESERT SPRING: THE AMPHIBIAN POINT OF VIEW

    EPA Science Inventory

    Numerous springs are scattered throughout the eastern Mojave Desert, most of which are concentrated near the bases of mountain ranges. Spring-fed wetlands in this region comprise nearly all the available habitat for amphibians. We surveyed 128 springs for amphibians and habitat t...

  2. Amphibian Oasis: Designing and Building a Schoolyard Pond.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gosselin, Heather; Johnson, Bob

    1996-01-01

    Building a pond in a schoolyard is a rewarding way to help boost local populations of amphibians, to increase the natural value of school grounds, and to serve as a locale for observing the life cycles of plants, invertebrates, and amphibians. This article outlines important considerations in designing and building a pond from siting through…

  3. All about Amphibians. Animal Life for Children. [Videotape].

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    2000

    This videotape teaches children about their favorite amphibious creatures, as well as amphibians' nearest cousins--toads, newts, and salamanders. Young students discover how these amazing creatures can live both in and out of water, learn about the amphibious life cycle, and compare the differences between amphibians and reptiles. This videotape…

  4. Incorporating Amphibian Malformations into Inquiry-Based Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Talley, Brooke L.

    2007-01-01

    Amphibians, a class of vertebrates consisting of frogs and toads, salamanders, and caecilians, are excellent organisms for middle school science students to study because of their ecological significance. Because they exchange oxygen and carbon dioxide through their skin, amphibians absorb any chemicals or substances present in their immediate…

  5. Sampling methods for amphibians in streams in the Pacific Northwest.

    Treesearch

    R. Bruce Bury; Paul Stephen. Corn

    1991-01-01

    Methods describing how to sample aquatic and semiaquatic amphibians in small streams and headwater habitats in the Pacific Northwest are presented. We developed a technique that samples 10-meter stretches of selected streams, which was adequate to detect presence or absence of amphibian species and provided sample sizes statistically sufficient to compare abundance of...

  6. AMPHIBIAN DECLINES AND ENVIRONMENTAL CHANGE IN THE EASTERN "MOJAVE DESERT"

    EPA Science Inventory

    A number of amphibian species historically inhabited sparsely distributed wetlands in the Mojave Desert, USA, habitats that have been dramatically altered or eliminated as a result of human activities. The population status and distribution of amphibians were investigated in a 20...

  7. Effects of experimental canopy manipulation on amphibian egg deposition

    Treesearch

    Zachary I. Felix; Yong Wang; Callie J. Schweitzer

    2010-01-01

    Although effects of forest management on amphibians are relatively well studied, few studies have examined how these practices affect egg deposition by adults, which can impact population recruitment. We quantified the effects of 4 canopy tree-retention treatments on amphibian oviposition patterns in clusters of 60-L aquatic mesocosms located in each treatment. We also...

  8. Incorporating Amphibian Malformations into Inquiry-Based Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Talley, Brooke L.

    2007-01-01

    Amphibians, a class of vertebrates consisting of frogs and toads, salamanders, and caecilians, are excellent organisms for middle school science students to study because of their ecological significance. Because they exchange oxygen and carbon dioxide through their skin, amphibians absorb any chemicals or substances present in their immediate…

  9. Current and Future Effects of Climate Change on Montane Amphibians

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Corn, S.

    2002-05-01

    Breeding phenology of amphibians in inextricably linked to weather, and change in the timing of breeding resulting from climate change may have consequences for the fitness of individuals and may affect persistence of amphibian populations. Amphibians in some north temperate locations have been observed to breed earlier in recent years in response to warmer spring temperatures, but this is not a universal phenomenon. In mountain populations, phenology is influenced by snow deposition as much as temperature. A trend towards earlier breeding, associated with increasing El Niño frequency, may be occurring in the Cascade Mountains in Oregon, but only at lower elevations. There is no evidence for changes in the dates of breeding activity by amphibians in the Rocky Mountains. Too few amphibian species have been studied, and those for which data exist have been studied for too brief a span of years to allow general conclusions about the effects of climate change. However, regardless of whether climate change has contributed to current amphibian declines, changes in temperature and the extent and duration of snow cover predicted for the next century will have increasingly severe consequences for the persistence of some species. Additional observations from amphibian populations, and spatial and temporal modeling of climate variables are needed to generate predictions of past and future breeding phenology, and the effects on amphibian population dynamics.

  10. Macroparasite infections of amphibians: what can they tell us?

    PubMed

    Koprivnikar, Janet; Marcogliese, David J; Rohr, Jason R; Orlofske, Sarah A; Raffel, Thomas R; Johnson, Pieter T J

    2012-09-01

    Understanding linkages between environmental changes and disease emergence in human and wildlife populations represents one of the greatest challenges to ecologists and parasitologists. While there is considerable interest in drivers of amphibian microparasite infections and the resulting consequences, comparatively little research has addressed such questions for amphibian macroparasites. What work has been done in this area has largely focused on nematodes of the genus Rhabdias and on two genera of trematodes (Ribeiroia and Echinostoma). Here, we provide a synopsis of amphibian macroparasites, explore how macroparasites may affect amphibian hosts and populations, and evaluate the significance of these parasites in larger community and ecosystem contexts. In addition, we consider environmental influences on amphibian-macroparasite interactions by exploring contemporary ecological factors known or hypothesized to affect patterns of infection. While some macroparasites of amphibians have direct negative effects on individual hosts, no studies have explicitly examined whether such infections can affect amphibian populations. Moreover, due to their complex life cycles and varying degrees of host specificity, amphibian macroparasites have rich potential as bioindicators of environmental modifications, especially providing insights into changes in food webs. Because of their documented pathologies and value as bioindicators, we emphasize the need for broader investigation of this understudied group, noting that ecological drivers affecting these parasites may also influence disease patterns in other aquatic fauna.

  11. AMPHIBIAN DECLINES AND ENVIRONMENTAL CHANGE IN THE EASTERN "MOJAVE DESERT"

    EPA Science Inventory

    A number of amphibian species historically inhabited sparsely distributed wetlands in the Mojave Desert, USA, habitats that have been dramatically altered or eliminated as a result of human activities. The population status and distribution of amphibians were investigated in a 20...

  12. MOJAVE DESERT SPRING: THE AMPHIBIAN POINT OF VIEW

    EPA Science Inventory

    Numerous springs are scattered throughout the eastern Mojave Desert, most of which are concentrated near the bases of mountain ranges. Spring-fed wetlands in this region comprise nearly all the available habitat for amphibians. We surveyed 128 springs for amphibians and habitat t...

  13. Amphibians and Reptiles from Paramakatoi and Kato, Guyana

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    MacCulloch, Ross D.; Reynolds, Robert P.

    2012-01-01

    We report the herpetofauna of two neighboring upland locations in west-central Guyana. Twenty amphibian and 24 reptile species were collected. Only 40% of amphibians and 12.5% of reptiles were collected in both locations. This is one of the few collections made at upland (750–800 m) locations in the Guiana Shield.

  14. Effectiveness of amphibians as biodiversity surrogates in pond conservation.

    PubMed

    Ilg, Christiane; Oertli, Beat

    2017-04-01

    Amphibian decline has led to worldwide conservation efforts, including the identification and designation of sites for their protection. These sites could also play an important role in the conservation of other freshwater taxa. In 89 ponds in Switzerland, we assessed the effectiveness of amphibians as a surrogate for 4 taxonomic groups that occur in the same freshwater ecosystems as amphibians: dragonflies, aquatic beetles, aquatic gastropods, and aquatic plants. The ponds were all of high value for amphibian conservation. Cross-taxon correlations were tested for species richness and conservation value, and Mantel tests were used to investigate community congruence. Species richness, conservation value, and community composition of amphibians were weakly congruent with these measures for the other taxonomic groups. Paired comparisons for the 5 groups considered showed that for each metric, amphibians had the lowest degree of congruence. Our results imply that site designation for amphibian conservation will not necessarily provide protection for freshwater biodiversity as a whole. To provide adequate protection for freshwater species, we recommend other taxonomic groups be considered in addition to amphibians in the prioritization and site designation process.

  15. Perspectives on invasive amphibians in Brazil

    PubMed Central

    Forti, Lucas Rodriguez; Becker, C. Guilherme; Tacioli, Leandro; Pereira, Vânia Rosa; Santos, André Cid F. A.; Oliveira, Igor; Haddad, Célio F. B.; Toledo, Luís Felipe

    2017-01-01

    Introduced species have the potential to become invasive and jeopardize entire ecosystems. The success of species establishing viable populations outside their original extent depends primarily on favorable climatic conditions in the invasive ranges. Species distribution modeling (SDM) can thus be used to estimate potential habitat suitability for populations of invasive species. Here we review the status of six amphibian species with invasive populations in Brazil (four domestic species and two imported species). We (i) modeled the current habitat suitability and future potential distribution of these six focal species, (ii) reported on the disease status of Eleutherodactylus johnstonei and Phyllodytes luteolus, and (iii) quantified the acoustic overlap of P. luteolus and Leptodactylus labyrinthicus with three co-occurring native species. Our models indicated that all six invasive species could potentially expand their ranges in Brazil within the next few decades. In addition, our SDMs predicted important expansions in available habitat for 2 out of 6 invasive species under future (2100) climatic conditions. We detected high acoustic niche overlap between invasive and native amphibian species, underscoring that acoustic interference might reduce mating success in local frogs. Despite the American bullfrog Lithobates catesbeianus being recognized as a potential reservoir for the frog-killing fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) in Brazil, we did not detect Bd in the recently introduced population of E. johnstonei and P. luteolus in the State of São Paulo. We emphasize that the number of invasive amphibian species in Brazil is increasing exponentially, highlighting the urgent need to monitor and control these populations and decrease potential impacts on the locally biodiverse wildlife. PMID:28938024

  16. Perspectives on invasive amphibians in Brazil.

    PubMed

    Forti, Lucas Rodriguez; Becker, C Guilherme; Tacioli, Leandro; Pereira, Vânia Rosa; Santos, André Cid F A; Oliveira, Igor; Haddad, Célio F B; Toledo, Luís Felipe

    2017-01-01

    Introduced species have the potential to become invasive and jeopardize entire ecosystems. The success of species establishing viable populations outside their original extent depends primarily on favorable climatic conditions in the invasive ranges. Species distribution modeling (SDM) can thus be used to estimate potential habitat suitability for populations of invasive species. Here we review the status of six amphibian species with invasive populations in Brazil (four domestic species and two imported species). We (i) modeled the current habitat suitability and future potential distribution of these six focal species, (ii) reported on the disease status of Eleutherodactylus johnstonei and Phyllodytes luteolus, and (iii) quantified the acoustic overlap of P. luteolus and Leptodactylus labyrinthicus with three co-occurring native species. Our models indicated that all six invasive species could potentially expand their ranges in Brazil within the next few decades. In addition, our SDMs predicted important expansions in available habitat for 2 out of 6 invasive species under future (2100) climatic conditions. We detected high acoustic niche overlap between invasive and native amphibian species, underscoring that acoustic interference might reduce mating success in local frogs. Despite the American bullfrog Lithobates catesbeianus being recognized as a potential reservoir for the frog-killing fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) in Brazil, we did not detect Bd in the recently introduced population of E. johnstonei and P. luteolus in the State of São Paulo. We emphasize that the number of invasive amphibian species in Brazil is increasing exponentially, highlighting the urgent need to monitor and control these populations and decrease potential impacts on the locally biodiverse wildlife.

  17. Estrogens Can Disrupt Amphibian Mating Behavior

    PubMed Central

    Hoffmann, Frauke; Kloas, Werner

    2012-01-01

    The main component of classical contraceptives, 17α-ethinylestradiol (EE2), has high estrogenic activity even at environmentally relevant concentrations. Although estrogenic endocrine disrupting compounds are assumed to contribute to the worldwide decline of amphibian populations by adverse effects on sexual differentiation, evidence for EE2 affecting amphibian mating behaviour is lacking. In this study, we demonstrate that EE2 exposure at five different concentrations (0.296 ng/L, 2.96 ng/L, 29.64 ng/L, 2.96 µg/L and 296.4 µg/L) can disrupt the mating behavior of adult male Xenopus laevis. EE2 exposure at all concentrations lowered male sexual arousal, indicated by decreased proportions of advertisement calls and increased proportions of the call type rasping, which characterizes a sexually unaroused state of a male. Additionally, EE2 at all tested concentrations affected temporal and spectral parameters of the advertisement calls, respectively. The classical and highly sensitive biomarker vitellogenin, on the other hand, was only induced at concentrations equal or higher than 2.96 µg/L. If kept under control conditions after a 96 h EE2 exposure (2.96 µg/L), alterations of male advertisement calls vanish gradually within 6 weeks and result in a lower sexual attractiveness of EE2 exposed males toward females as demonstrated by female choice experiments. These findings indicate that exposure to environmentally relevant EE2 concentrations can directly disrupt male mate calling behavior of X. laevis and can indirectly affect the mating behavior of females. The results suggest the possibility that EE2 exposure could reduce the reproductive success of EE2 exposed animals and these effects might contribute to the global problem of amphibian decline. PMID:22355410

  18. Langerhans-like cells in amphibian epidermis.

    PubMed Central

    Carrillo-Farga, J; Castell, A; Pérez, A; Rondán, A

    1990-01-01

    Langerhans cells have been described in epidermis and other stratified epithelia of mammals. In other vertebrates equivalent cells have not been found. Amphibians show skin graft rejection, so it is possible that these animals have epidermal cells homologous to Langerhans cells. In this work we demonstrate the existence of ATPase-positive dendritic cells in frog epidermis that are similar ultrastructurally to mammalian Langerhans cells, except for the absence of Birbeck granules. Images Fig. 1 Fig. 2 Fig. 3 Fig. 4 Fig. 5 Fig. 6 Fig. 7 Fig. 8 PMID:2148747

  19. Partners in amphibian and reptile conservation 2013 annual report

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Conrad, Paulette M.; Weir, Linda A.; Nanjappa, Priya

    2014-01-01

    Partners in Amphibian and Reptile Conservation (PARC) was established in 1999 to address the widespread declines, extinctions, and range reductions of amphibians and reptiles, with a focus on conservation of taxa and habitats in North America. Amphibians and reptiles are affected by a broad range of human activities, both as incidental effects of habitat alteration and direct effect from overexploitation; these animals are also challenged by the perception that amphibians and reptiles are either dangerous or of little environmental or economic value. However, PARC members understand these taxa are important parts of our natural an cultural heritage and they serve important roles in ecosystems throughout the world. With many amphibians and reptiles classified as threatened with extinction, conservation of these animals has never been more important.

  20. Proteolytic degradation and deactivation of amphibian skin peptides obtained by electrical stimulation of their dorsal glands.

    PubMed

    Samgina, Tatiana Yu; Tolpina, Miriam I; Hakalehto, Elias; Artemenko, Konstantin A; Bergquist, Jonas; Lebedev, Albert T

    2016-05-01

    Amphibians are among the oldest creatures on our planet. Their only defensive weapon efficient against microorganisms and predators involves their skin secretion. The wide range of biological activities of the peptides in the skin secretion of amphibians makes these compounds rather interesting for generation of prospective pharmaceuticals. The first step in studying these molecules requires their structures to be established. Mass spectrometry is the most powerful tool for this purpose. The sampling and sample preparation stages preceding mass spectrometry experiments appear to be rather crucial. The results obtained here demonstrate that these preparation procedures might lead to partial or complete loss of the bioactive peptides in the secretion. Five minutes in water was enough to completely destroy all of the bioactive peptides in the skin secretion of the marsh frog (Rana ridibunda); even immediate addition of methanol to the water solution of the peptides did not prevent partial destruction. Concerted effort should be directed towards development of the most efficient procedure to keep the secreted peptides intact. Graphical Abstract ᅟ.

  1. Captive breeding, reintroduction, and the conservation of amphibians.

    PubMed

    Griffiths, Richard A; Pavajeau, Lissette

    2008-08-01

    The global amphibian crisis has resulted in renewed interest in captive breeding as a conservation tool for amphibians. Although captive breeding and reintroduction are controversial management actions, amphibians possess a number of attributes that make them potentially good models for such programs. We reviewed the extent and effectiveness of captive breeding and reintroduction programs for amphibians through an analysis of data from the Global Amphibian Assessment and other sources. Most captive breeding and reintroduction programs for amphibians have focused on threatened species from industrialized countries with relatively low amphibian diversity. Out of 110 species in such programs, 52 were in programs with no plans for reintroduction that had conservation research or conservation education as their main purpose. A further 39 species were in programs that entailed captive breeding and reintroduction or combined captive breeding with relocations of wild animals. Nineteen species were in programs with relocations of wild animals only. Eighteen out of 58 reintroduced species have subsequently bred successfully in the wild, and 13 of these species have established self-sustaining populations. As with threatened amphibians generally, amphibians in captive breeding or reintroduction programs face multiple threats, with habitat loss being the most important. Nevertheless, only 18 out of 58 reintroduced species faced threats that are all potentially reversible. When selecting species for captive programs, dilemmas may emerge between choosing species that have a good chance of surviving after reintroduction because their threats are reversible and those that are doomed to extinction in the wild as a result of irreversible threats. Captive breeding and reintroduction programs for amphibians require long-term commitments to ensure success, and different management strategies may be needed for species earmarked for reintroduction and species used for conservation

  2. Current extinction rates of reptiles and amphibians

    PubMed Central

    Alroy, John

    2015-01-01

    There is broad concern that a mass extinction of amphibians and reptiles is now underway. Here I apply an extremely conservative Bayesian method to estimate the number of recent amphibian and squamate extinctions in nine important tropical and subtropical regions. The data stem from a combination of museum collection databases and published site surveys. The method computes an extinction probability for each species by considering its sighting frequency and last sighting date. It infers hardly any extinction when collection dates are randomized and it provides underestimates when artificial extinction events are imposed. The method also appears to be insensitive to trends in sampling; therefore, the counts it provides are absolute minimums. Extinctions or severe population crashes have accumulated steadily since the 1970s and 1980s, and at least 3.1% of frog species have already disappeared. Based on these data and this conservative method, the best estimate of the global grand total is roughly 200 extinctions. Consistent with previous results, frog losses are heavy in Latin America, which has been greatly affected by the pathogenic chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis. Extinction rates are now four orders-of-magnitude higher than background, and at least another 6.9% of all frog species may be lost within the next century, even if there is no acceleration in the growth of environmental threats. PMID:26438855

  3. Current extinction rates of reptiles and amphibians.

    PubMed

    Alroy, John

    2015-10-20

    There is broad concern that a mass extinction of amphibians and reptiles is now underway. Here I apply an extremely conservative Bayesian method to estimate the number of recent amphibian and squamate extinctions in nine important tropical and subtropical regions. The data stem from a combination of museum collection databases and published site surveys. The method computes an extinction probability for each species by considering its sighting frequency and last sighting date. It infers hardly any extinction when collection dates are randomized and it provides underestimates when artificial extinction events are imposed. The method also appears to be insensitive to trends in sampling; therefore, the counts it provides are absolute minimums. Extinctions or severe population crashes have accumulated steadily since the 1970s and 1980s, and at least 3.1% of frog species have already disappeared. Based on these data and this conservative method, the best estimate of the global grand total is roughly 200 extinctions. Consistent with previous results, frog losses are heavy in Latin America, which has been greatly affected by the pathogenic chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis. Extinction rates are now four orders-of-magnitude higher than background, and at least another 6.9% of all frog species may be lost within the next century, even if there is no acceleration in the growth of environmental threats.

  4. Computational modeling of the amphibian thyroid axis ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    In vitro screening of chemicals for bioactivity together with computational modeling are beginning to replace animal toxicity testing in support of chemical risk assessment. To facilitate this transition, an amphibian thyroid axis model has been developed to describe thyroid homeostasis during Xenopus laevis pro-metamorphosis. The model simulates the dynamic relationships of normal thyroid biology throughout this critical period of amphibian development and includes molecular initiating events (MIEs) for thyroid axis disruption to allow in silico simulations of hormone levels following chemical perturbations. One MIE that has been formally described using the adverse outcome pathway (AOP) framework is thyroperoxidase (TPO) inhibition. The goal of this study was to refine the model parameters and validate model predictions by generating dose-response and time-course biochemical data following exposure to three TPO inhibitors, methimazole, 6-propylthiouracil and 2-mercaptobenzothiazole. Key model variables including gland and blood thyroid hormone (TH) levels were compared to empirical values measured in biological samples at 2, 4, 7 and 10 days following initiation of exposure at Nieuwkoop and Faber (NF) stage 54 (onset of pro-metamorphosis). The secondary objective of these studies was to relate depleted blood TH levels to delayed metamorphosis, the adverse apical outcome. Delayed metamorphosis was evaluated by continuing exposure with a subset of larvae until a

  5. Phylogenetically-informed priorities for amphibian conservation.

    PubMed

    Isaac, Nick J B; Redding, David W; Meredith, Helen M; Safi, Kamran

    2012-01-01

    The amphibian decline and extinction crisis demands urgent action to prevent further large numbers of species extinctions. Lists of priority species for conservation, based on a combination of species' threat status and unique contribution to phylogenetic diversity, are one tool for the direction and catalyzation of conservation action. We describe the construction of a near-complete species-level phylogeny of 5713 amphibian species, which we use to create a list of evolutionarily distinct and globally endangered species (EDGE list) for the entire class Amphibia. We present sensitivity analyses to test the robustness of our priority list to uncertainty in species' phylogenetic position and threat status. We find that both sources of uncertainty have only minor impacts on our 'top 100' list of priority species, indicating the robustness of the approach. By contrast, our analyses suggest that a large number of Data Deficient species are likely to be high priorities for conservation action from the perspective of their contribution to the evolutionary history.

  6. Computational modeling of the amphibian thyroid axis ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    In vitro screening of chemicals for bioactivity together with computational modeling are beginning to replace animal toxicity testing in support of chemical risk assessment. To facilitate this transition, an amphibian thyroid axis model has been developed to describe thyroid homeostasis during Xenopus laevis pro-metamorphosis. The model simulates the dynamic relationships of normal thyroid biology throughout this critical period of amphibian development and includes molecular initiating events (MIEs) for thyroid axis disruption to allow in silico simulations of hormone levels following chemical perturbations. One MIE that has been formally described using the adverse outcome pathway (AOP) framework is thyroperoxidase (TPO) inhibition. The goal of this study was to refine the model parameters and validate model predictions by generating dose-response and time-course biochemical data following exposure to three TPO inhibitors, methimazole, 6-propylthiouracil and 2-mercaptobenzothiazole. Key model variables including gland and blood thyroid hormone (TH) levels were compared to empirical values measured in biological samples at 2, 4, 7 and 10 days following initiation of exposure at Nieuwkoop and Faber (NF) stage 54 (onset of pro-metamorphosis). The secondary objective of these studies was to relate depleted blood TH levels to delayed metamorphosis, the adverse apical outcome. Delayed metamorphosis was evaluated by continuing exposure with a subset of larvae until a

  7. The First Gene-encoded Amphibian Neurotoxin*

    PubMed Central

    You, Dewen; Hong, Jing; Rong, Mingqiang; Yu, Haining; Liang, Songping; Ma, Yufang; Yang, Hailong; Wu, Jing; Lin, Donghai; Lai, Ren

    2009-01-01

    Many gene-encoded neurotoxins with various functions have been discovered in fish, reptiles, and mammals. A novel 60-residue neurotoxin peptide (anntoxin) that inhibited tetrodotoxin-sensitive (TTX-S) voltage-gated sodium channel (VGSC) was purified and characterized from the skin secretions of the tree frog Hyla annectans (Jerdon). This is the first gene-encoded neurotoxin found in amphibians. The IC50 of anntoxin for the TTX-S channel was about 3.4 μm. Anntoxin shares sequence homology with Kunitz-type toxins but contains only two of three highly conserved cysteine bridges, which are typically found in these small, basic neurotoxin modules, i.e. snake dendrotoxins. Anntoxin showed an inhibitory ability against trypsin with an inhibitory constant (Ki) of 0.025 μm. Anntoxin was distributed in skin, brain, stomach, and liver with a concentration of 25, 7, 3, and 2 μg/g wet tissue, respectively. H. annectans lives on trees or other plants for its entire life cycle, and its skin contains the largest amount of anntoxin, which possibly helps defend against various aggressors or predators. A low dose of anntoxin was found to induce lethal toxicity for several potential predators, including the insect, snake, bird, and mouse. The tissue distribution and functional properties of the current toxin may provide insights into the ecological adaptation of tree-living amphibians. PMID:19535333

  8. Cleavage plane determination in amphibian eggs.

    PubMed

    Sawai, T; Yomota, A

    1990-01-01

    In the present study using eggs of Cynops pyrrhogaster and Xenopus laevis, we examined (1) structural changes in the cytoplasm before the appearance of the cleavage furrow using a cytochemical method, (2) the time of cleavage plane determination depending on the mitotic apparatus (MA), by changing the shape of the eggs, and (3) the time of arrival of the "cleavage stimulus" at the cortex, by injecting colchicine solution or removing cytoplasm. Results were as follows: (1) In amphibian eggs the diastema was formed after development of the MA, appearing between the two asters after the MA had begun to degenerate. (2) The cleavage plane was preliminarily determined by the MA in the meta- to anaphase of karyokinesis. At this time, however, the egg cortex had not yet received the "cleavage stimulus" indispensable for furrow formation. (3) The egg cortex was really prepared to establish the furrow just after the edge of the diastema arrived at the cortex, when the MA had already degenerated. These results imply that the cleavage plane of the amphibian eggs is determined in two steps: the first, depending on the MA, is the determination of the direction of the growth of the diastema, and the second is the arrival of the "cleavage stimulus" at the cortex in association with the diastema.

  9. Fetal adaptations for viviparity in amphibians.

    PubMed

    Wake, Marvalee H

    2015-08-01

    Live-bearing has evolved in all three orders of amphibians--frogs, salamanders, and caecilians. Developing young may be either yolk dependent, or maternal nutrients may be supplied after yolk is resorbed, depending on the species. Among frogs, embryos in two distantly related lineages develop in the skin of the maternal parents' backs; they are born either as advanced larvae or fully metamorphosed froglets, depending on the species. In other frogs, and in salamanders and caecilians, viviparity is intraoviductal; one lineage of salamanders includes species that are yolk dependent and born either as larvae or metamorphs, or that practice cannibalism and are born as metamorphs. Live-bearing caecilians all, so far as is known, exhaust yolk before hatching and mothers provide nutrients during the rest of the relatively long gestation period. The developing young that have maternal nutrition have a number of heterochronic changes, such as precocious development of the feeding apparatus and the gut. Furthermore, several of the fetal adaptations, such as a specialized dentition and a prolonged metamorphosis, are homoplasious and present in members of two or all three of the amphibian orders. At the same time, we know little about the developmental and functional bases for fetal adaptations, and less about the factors that drive their evolution and facilitate their maintenance.

  10. Amphibian conservation: clarifications to comments from Andreone

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Muths, Erin L.; Fisher, Robert N.

    2017-01-01

    We appreciate the comments from Andreone (2016) regarding our proposed alternative strategy for addressing the amphibian crisis. Andreone recognizes the utility of an Incident Command System approach but doubts the feasibility of implementation at an international level. We stated in our original article, however, that ‘the feasibility of our suggestion is debatable, but our point is that radically different approaches are necessary to effectively manage the largest extinction event in modern history’ (Muths & Fisher, 2015). There are examples of where such top-down strategies are being applied; e.g. for the brown tree snake Boiga irregularis (Stanford & Rodda, 2007), and biosecurity planning for Micronesia and Hawaii (NAVFAC Pacific, 2016). Another example is presented by Andreone. In Madagascar a community-wide conservation plan has been developed complete with prioritization of specific actions (Andreone, 2016). As with any top-down strategy, challenges will surface, especially when making decisions that affect economics. We note this caveat in our article, and Andreone points out such issues in Madagascar, where there are mismatches in priorities between biodiversity conservation and civil needs. Our suggestion is that a new paradigm needs to be considered given the gravity of amphibian decline, and one option may be to take a global approach focusing on specific, major threats. Application of an Incident Command System would not necessitate competition with, or emasculation of, local conservation priorities or actions.

  11. Skeletogenesis in Xenopus tropicalis: characteristic bone development in an anuran amphibian.

    PubMed

    Miura, Shinichirou; Hanaoka, Kazunori; Togashi, Shin

    2008-11-01

    In mammals and birds, most of the skeletal bones develop via endochondral ossification. Chondrocytes in the cartilaginous anlagen undergo processes of maturation such as hypertrophy, calcification and apoptosis. Concomitantly, osteoblasts are recruited to replace the cartilage scaffold gradually with bone matrix and become osteocytes in the trabecular bones. Throughout the successive development of bones, several gene products have been identified as being the components of the molecular mechanism regulating bone development. Transcription factor SOX9 plays essential roles during developmental steps from undifferentiated mesenchymal cells to proliferating chondrocytes, meanwhile, it inhibits transition of proliferating chondrocytes to hypertrophy. Other transcription factors RUNX2 and OSTERIX are critical in osteoblast differentiation, and RUNX2 is also essential for chondrocyte maturation such as hypertrophy and matrix mineralization. GDF5, a protein belonging to the transforming growth factor beta superfamily, is involved in joint formation and chondrogenesis. The limb skeleton of one of the ancestral tetrapod, anuran amphibians also develops through cartilaginous anlagen to bones, but their skeletogenesis has some unique characteristics compared with that of mammals and birds. Anuran amphibians develop and grow with less bone trabeculae and poor epiphyseal growth plates, and its endochondral ossification was found to be a delayed process. In order to address the characteristic skeletal development of anuran amphibians, we cloned Xenopus tropicalis RUNX2 (Xt-runx2), OSTERIX (Xt-osterix) and GDF5 (Xt-gdf5) homologue, and observed expression patterns together with Xt-sox9. In X. tropicalis limbs, histological observation and section in situ hybridization analysis suggest that Xt-SOX9 is involved in chondrogenesis, Xt-RUNX2 and Xt-OSTERIX are involved in osteogenesis, and Xt-GDF5 is involved in joint formation. In the cartilaginous anlagen, Xt-runx2 expression was

  12. Amphibian skin may select for rare environmental microbes

    PubMed Central

    Walke, Jenifer B; Becker, Matthew H; Loftus, Stephen C; House, Leanna L; Cormier, Guy; Jensen, Roderick V; Belden, Lisa K

    2014-01-01

    Host-microbe symbioses rely on the successful transmission or acquisition of symbionts in each new generation. Amphibians host a diverse cutaneous microbiota, and many of these symbionts appear to be mutualistic and may limit infection by the chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, which has caused global amphibian population declines and extinctions in recent decades. Using bar-coded 454 pyrosequencing of the 16S rRNA gene, we addressed the question of symbiont transmission by examining variation in amphibian skin microbiota across species and sites and in direct relation to environmental microbes. Although acquisition of environmental microbes occurs in some host-symbiont systems, this has not been extensively examined in free-living vertebrate-microbe symbioses. Juvenile bullfrogs (Rana catesbeiana), adult red-spotted newts (Notophthalmus viridescens), pond water and pond substrate were sampled at a single pond to examine host-specificity and potential environmental transmission of microbiota. To assess population level variation in skin microbiota, adult newts from two additional sites were also sampled. Cohabiting bullfrogs and newts had distinct microbial communities, as did newts across the three sites. The microbial communities of amphibians and the environment were distinct; there was very little overlap in the amphibians' core microbes and the most abundant environmental microbes, and the relative abundances of OTUs that were shared by amphibians and the environment were inversely related. These results suggest that, in a host species-specific manner, amphibian skin may select for microbes that are generally in low abundance in the environment. PMID:24858782

  13. Amphibian skin may select for rare environmental microbes.

    PubMed

    Walke, Jenifer B; Becker, Matthew H; Loftus, Stephen C; House, Leanna L; Cormier, Guy; Jensen, Roderick V; Belden, Lisa K

    2014-11-01

    Host-microbe symbioses rely on the successful transmission or acquisition of symbionts in each new generation. Amphibians host a diverse cutaneous microbiota, and many of these symbionts appear to be mutualistic and may limit infection by the chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, which has caused global amphibian population declines and extinctions in recent decades. Using bar-coded 454 pyrosequencing of the 16S rRNA gene, we addressed the question of symbiont transmission by examining variation in amphibian skin microbiota across species and sites and in direct relation to environmental microbes. Although acquisition of environmental microbes occurs in some host-symbiont systems, this has not been extensively examined in free-living vertebrate-microbe symbioses. Juvenile bullfrogs (Rana catesbeiana), adult red-spotted newts (Notophthalmus viridescens), pond water and pond substrate were sampled at a single pond to examine host-specificity and potential environmental transmission of microbiota. To assess population level variation in skin microbiota, adult newts from two additional sites were also sampled. Cohabiting bullfrogs and newts had distinct microbial communities, as did newts across the three sites. The microbial communities of amphibians and the environment were distinct; there was very little overlap in the amphibians' core microbes and the most abundant environmental microbes, and the relative abundances of OTUs that were shared by amphibians and the environment were inversely related. These results suggest that, in a host species-specific manner, amphibian skin may select for microbes that are generally in low abundance in the environment.

  14. Nitrogen pollution: an assessment of its threat to amphibian survival.

    PubMed Central

    Rouse, J D; Bishop, C A; Struger, J

    1999-01-01

    The potential for nitrate to affect amphibian survival was evaluated by examining the areas in North America where concentrations of nitrate in water occur above amphibian toxicity thresholds. Nitrogen pollution from anthropogenic sources enters bodies of water through agricultural runoff or percolation associated with nitrogen fertilization, livestock, precipitation, and effluents from industrial and human wastes. Environmental concentrations of nitrate in watersheds throughout North America range from < 1 to > 100 mg/L. Of the 8,545 water quality samples collected from states and provinces bordering the Great Lakes, 19.8% contained nitrate concentrations exceeding those which can cause sublethal effects in amphibians. In the laboratory lethal and sublethal effects in amphibians are detected at nitrate concentrations between 2.5 and 100 mg/L. Furthermore, amphibian prey such as insects and predators of amphibians such as fish are also sensitive to these elevated levels of nitrate. From this we conclude that nitrate concentrations in some watersheds in North America are high enough to cause death and developmental anomalies in amphibians and impact other animals in aquatic ecosystems. In some situations, the use of vegetated buffer strips adjacent to water courses can reduce nitrogen contamination of surface waters. Ultimately, there is a need to reduce runoff, sewage effluent discharge, and the use of fertilizers, and to establish and enforce water quality guidelines for nitrate for the protection of aquatic organisms. Images Figure 1 Figure 2 PMID:10504145

  15. Modeling effects of conservation grassland losses on amphibian habitat

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mushet, David M.; Neau, Jordan L.; Euliss, Ned H.

    2014-01-01

    Amphibians provide many ecosystem services valued by society. However, populations have declined globally with most declines linked to habitat change. Wetlands and surrounding terrestrial grasslands form habitat for amphibians in the North American Prairie Pothole Region (PPR). Wetland drainage and grassland conversion have destroyed or degraded much amphibian habitat in the PPR. However, conservation grasslands can provide alternate habitat. In the United States, the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) is the largest program maintaining grasslands on agricultural lands. We used an ecosystem services model (InVEST) parameterized for the PPR to quantify amphibian habitat over a six-year period (2007–2012). We then quantified changes in availability of amphibian habitat under various land-cover scenarios representing incremental losses (10%, 25%, 50%, 75%, and 100%) of CRP grasslands from 2012 levels. The area of optimal amphibian habitat in the four PPR ecoregions modeled (i.e., Northern Glaciated Plains, Northwestern Glaciated Plains, Lake Agassiz Plain, Des Moines Lobe) declined by approximately 22%, from 3.8 million ha in 2007 to 2.9 million ha in 2012. These losses were driven by the conversion of CRP grasslands to croplands, primarily for corn and soybean production. Our modeling identified an additional 0.8 million ha (26%) of optimal amphibian habitat that would be lost if remaining CRP lands are returned to crop production. An economic climate favoring commodity production over conservation has resulted in substantial losses of amphibian habitat across the PPR that will likely continue into the future. Other regions of the world face similar challenges to maintaining amphibian habitats.

  16. Facility design and associated services for the study of amphibians.

    PubMed

    Browne, Robert K; Odum, R Andrew; Herman, Timothy; Zippel, Kevin

    2007-01-01

    The role of facilities and associated services for amphibians has recently undergone diversification. Amphibians traditionally used as research models adjust well to captivity and thrive with established husbandry techniques. However, it is now necessary to maintain hundreds of novel amphibian species in captive breeding, conservation research, and biomedical research programs. These diverse species have a very wide range of husbandry requirements, and in many cases the ultimate survival of threatened species will depend on captive populations. Two critical factors have emerged in the maintenance of amphibians, stringent quarantine and high-quality water. Because exotic diseases such as chytridiomycosis have devastated both natural and captive populations of amphibians, facilities must provide stringent quarantine. The provision of high-quality water is also essential to maintain amphibian health and condition due to the intimate physiological relationship of amphibians to their aquatic environment. Fortunately, novel technologies backed by recent advances in the scientific knowledge of amphibian biology and disease management are available to overcome these challenges. For example, automation can increase the reliability of quarantine and maintain water quality, with a corresponding decrease in handling and the associated disease-transfer risk. It is essential to build facilities with appropriate nontoxic waterproof materials and to provide quarantined amphibian rooms for each population. Other spaces and services include live feed rooms, quarantine stations, isolation rooms, laboratory space, technical support systems, reliable energy and water supplies, high-quality feed, and security. Good husbandry techniques must include reliable and species-specific management by trained staff members who receive support from the administration. It is possible to improve husbandry techniques for many species by sharing knowledge through common information systems. Overall

  17. Amphibians as a model for the study of endocrine disruptors.

    PubMed

    Kloas, Werner

    2002-01-01

    Evidence shows that environmental compounds can interfere with the endocrine systems of wildlife and humans. The main sink of such substances, called endocrine disruptors (EDs), which are mainly of anthropogenic origin, is surface water; thus, aquatic vertebrates such as fishes and amphibians are most endangered. Despite numerous reports on EDs in fishes, information about EDs in amphibians is scarce, and this paucity of information is of particular concern in view of the worldwide decline of amphibians. EDs could contribute to changes of amphibian populations via adverse effects on reproduction and the thyroid system. In amphibians, EDs can affect reproduction by (anti)estrogenic and (anti)androgenic modes of action that produce severe effects including abnormal sexual differentiation. ED actions on the thyroid system cause acceleration or retardation of metamorphosis, which may also affect population levels. Our broad knowledge of amphibian biology and endocrinology indicates that amphibians are very suitable models for the study of EDs. In particular, effects of EDs on the thyroid system triggering metamorphosis can be determined easily and most sensitively in amphibians compared to other vertebrates. A new classification of EDs according to their biological modes of action is proposed because EDs have quite heterogeneous chemical structures, which do not allow prediction of their biological effects. Methods and strategies are proposed for identification and risk assessment of EDs, whether as pure test substances or as mixtures from environmental samples. Effects of EDs on the thyroid system of amphibians can be assessed by a single animal model (Xenopus laevis), whereas the various types of reproduction need comparative studies to investigate whether general endocrine principles do exist among several species of anurans and urodeles. Thus, at least one anuran and one urodelean model are needed to determine ED interference with reproduction.

  18. [Strategies for Conservation of Endangered Amphibian and Reptile Species].

    PubMed

    Anan'eva, N B; Uteshev, V K; Orlova, N L; Gakhova, E N

    2015-01-01

    Strategies for conservation of endangered amphibian and reptile species are discussed. One-fifth of all vertebrates belongs to the category of "endangered species," and amphibians are first on the list (41%). Every fifth reptile species is in danger of extinction, and insufficient information is characteristic of every other fifth. As has been demonstrated, efficient development of a network of nature conservation areas, cryopreservation, and methods for laboratory breeding and reintroduction play.the key roles in adequate strategies for preservation of amphibians and reptiles.

  19. Zoonotic diseases associated with reptiles and amphibians: an update.

    PubMed

    Mitchell, Mark A

    2011-09-01

    Reptiles and amphibians are popular as pets. There are increased concerns among public health officials because of the zoonotic potential associated with these animals. Encounters with reptiles and amphibians are also on the rise in the laboratory setting and with wild animals; in both of these practices, there is also an increased likelihood for exposure to zoonotic pathogens. It is important that veterinarians remain current with the literature as it relates to emerging and reemerging zoonotic diseases attributed to reptiles and amphibians so that they can protect themselves, their staff, and their clients from potential problems.

  20. Amphibian fertilization and development in microgravity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Souza, K. A.; Black, S. D.

    1985-01-01

    An experiment investigating the effects of gravity on embryonic development in amphibians is proposed. The planned procedures for the preparation of the frog eggs for launching in the Space Shuttle, for the injection of the eggs with gonadotropin, for the insertion of the eggs into egg chambers, for the storage of one of the chambers in a microgravity area and the second into a centrifuge, and for the fertilization of the eggs are described. The later organogenesis, swimming behavior, cytoplasmic components, cellular formation, neural plate and archenteron expansion, and allometry and expansion of the organ systems will be examined. Normal morphology for embryos and tadpoles developing at microgravity and the formation of the neural plate opposite the sperm entry point meridian are predicted.

  1. Amphibian fertilization and development in microgravity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Souza, K. A.; Black, S. D.

    1985-01-01

    An experiment investigating the effects of gravity on embryonic development in amphibians is proposed. The planned procedures for the preparation of the frog eggs for launching in the Space Shuttle, for the injection of the eggs with gonadotropin, for the insertion of the eggs into egg chambers, for the storage of one of the chambers in a microgravity area and the second into a centrifuge, and for the fertilization of the eggs are described. The later organogenesis, swimming behavior, cytoplasmic components, cellular formation, neural plate and archenteron expansion, and allometry and expansion of the organ systems will be examined. Normal morphology for embryos and tadpoles developing at microgravity and the formation of the neural plate opposite the sperm entry point meridian are predicted.

  2. Sound source perception in anuran amphibians.

    PubMed

    Bee, Mark A

    2012-04-01

    Sound source perception refers to the auditory system's ability to parse incoming sensory information into coherent representations of distinct sound sources in the environment. Such abilities are no doubt key to successful communication in many taxa, but we know little about their function in animal communication systems. For anuran amphibians (frogs and toads), social and reproductive behaviors depend on a listener's ability to hear and identify sound signals amid high levels of background noise in acoustically cluttered environments. Recent neuroethological studies are revealing how frogs parse these complex acoustic scenes to identify individual calls in noisy breeding choruses. Current evidence highlights some interesting similarities and differences in how the auditory systems of frogs and other vertebrates (most notably birds and mammals) perform auditory scene analysis.

  3. Small molecules that recapitulate the early steps of urodele amphibian limb regeneration and confer multipotency.

    PubMed

    Kim, Woong-Hee; Jung, Da-Woon; Kim, Jinmi; Im, Sin-Hyeog; Hwang, Seung Yong; Williams, Darren R

    2012-04-20

    In urodele amphibians, an early step in limb regeneration is skeletal muscle fiber dedifferentiation into a cellulate that proliferates to contribute new limb tissue. However, mammalian muscle cannot dedifferentiate after injury. We have developed a novel, small-molecule-based method to induce dedifferentiation in mammalian skeletal muscle. Muscle cellularization was induced by the small molecule myoseverin. Candidate small molecules were tested for the induction of proliferation in the cellulate. We observed that treatment with the small molecules BIO (glycogen synthase-3 kinase inhibitor), lysophosphatidic acid (pleiotropic activator of G-protein-coupled receptors), SB203580 (p38 MAP kinase inhibitor), or SQ22536 (adenylyl cyclase inhibitor) induced proliferation. Moreover, these proliferating cells were multipotent, as confirmed by the chemical induction of mesodermal-derived cell lineages. Microarray analysis showed that the multipotent, BIO-treated cellulate possessed a markedly different gene expression pattern than lineage-restricted C2C12 myoblasts, especially for genes related to signal transduction and differentiation. Sequential small molecule treatment of the muscle cellulate with BIO, SB203580, or SQ22536 and the aurora B kinase inhibitor, reversine, induced the formation of cells with neurogenic potential (ectodermal lineage), indicating the acquirement of pluripotency. This is the first demonstration of a small molecule method that induces mammalian muscle to undergo dedifferentiation and rededifferentiation into alternate cell lineages. This method induces dedifferentiation in a simple, stepwise approach and has therapeutic potential to enhance tissue regeneration in mammals.

  4. Checklist of Helminth parasites of Amphibians from South America.

    PubMed

    Campião, Karla Magalhães; Morais, Drausio Honorio; Dias, Olívia Tavares; Aguiar, Aline; Toledo, Gislayne De Melo; Tavares, Luiz Eduardo Roland; Da Silva, Reinaldo José

    2014-07-30

    Parasitological studies on helminths of amphibians in South America have increased in the past few years. Here, we present a list with summarized data published on helminths of South American amphibians from 1925 to 2012, including a list of helminth parasites, host species, and geographic records. We found 194 reports of helminths parasitizing 185 amphibian species from eleven countries: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Equador, French Guyana, Guyana, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay and Venezuela. Helminth biodiversity includes 278 parasite species of the groups Acanthocephala, Nematoda, Cestoda, Monogenea and Trematoda. A list of helminth parasite species per host, and references are also presented. This contribution aims to document the biodiversity of helminth parasites in South American amphibians, as well as identify gaps in our knowledge, which in turn may guide subsequent studies. 

  5. Twenty years of ISAREN: an amphibian biologist in Wonderland.

    PubMed

    Kikuyama, Sakae

    2010-09-01

    The 6th International Symposium on Amphibian and Reptilian Endocrinology and Neurobiology (ISAREN), the former International Symposium on Amphibian Endocrinology (ISAE), was recently held in Berlin. ISAREN developed from two symposia on amphibian biology held in European countries in 1988-1990. In this article, the history of ISAREN was briefly stated. In addition, some of the topics of our researches carried out in collaboration with several groups, using various amphibian species during the past 20 years and/or presented in the past symposia were reviewed. The topics included the discovery of pancreatic chitinase, involvement of growth hormone in vitellogenin synthesis, changes of ANF-like immunoreactivity in the frogs sent into the space, discovery of a peptide sex-pheromone, origin of the epithelial pituitary, and hypothalamic regulation of thyroid-stimulating hormone. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. A database of life-history traits of European amphibians

    PubMed Central

    Moulherat, Sylvain; Calvez, Olivier; Stevens, Virginie M; Clobert, Jean; Schmeller, Dirk S

    2014-01-01

    Abstract In the current context of climate change and landscape fragmentation, efficient conservation strategies require the explicit consideration of life history traits. This is particularly true for amphibians, which are highly threatened worldwide, composed by more than 7400 species, which is constitute one of the most species-rich vertebrate groups. The collection of information on life history traits is difficult due to the ecology of species and remoteness of their habitats. It is therefore not surprising that our knowledge is limited, and missing information on certain life history traits are common for in this species group. We compiled data on amphibian life history traits from literature in an extensive database with morphological and behavioral traits, habitat preferences and movement abilities for 86 European amphibian species (50 Anuran and 36 Urodela species). When it were available, we reported data for males, females, juveniles and tadpoles. Our database may serve as an important starting point for further analyses regarding amphibian conservation. PMID:25425939

  7. An alternative framework for responding to the amphibian crisis

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Muths, Erin L.; Fisher, Robert N.

    2017-01-01

    Volumes of data illustrate the severity of the crisis affecting amphibians, where > 32% of amphibians worldwide are threatened with declining populations. Although there have been isolated victories, the current approach to the issue is unsuccessful. We suggest that a radically different approach, something akin to human emergency response management (i.e. the Incident Command System), is one alternative to addressing the inertia and lack of cohesion in responding to amphibian issues. We acknowledge existing efforts and the useful research that has been conducted, but we suggest that a change is warranted and that the identification of a new amphibian chytrid provides the impetus for such a change. Our goal is to recognize that without a centralized effort we (collectively) are likely to fail in responding to this challenge.

  8. Ambient UV-B radiation causes deformities in amphibian embryos

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Blaustein, A.R.; Kiesecker, J.M.; Chivers, D.P.; Anthony, R.G.

    1997-01-01

    There has been a great deal of recent attention on the suspected increase in amphibian deformities. However, most reports of amphibian deformities have been anecdotal, and no experiments in the field under natural conditions have been performed to investigate this phenomenon. Under laboratory conditions, a variety of agents can induce deformities in amphibians. We investigated one of these agents, UV-B radiation, in field experiments, as a cause for amphibian deformities. We monitored hatching success and development in long-toed salamanders under UV-B shields and in regimes that allowed UV-B radiation. Embryos under UV-B shields had a significantly higher hatching rate and fewer deformities, and developed more quickly than those exposed to UV-B. Deformities may contribute directly to embryo mortality, and they may affect an individual's subsequent survival after hatching.

  9. Metabolism of pesticides after dermal exposure to amphibians

    EPA Science Inventory

    Understanding how pesticide exposure to non-target species influences toxicity is necessary to accurately assess the ecological risks these compounds pose. Aquatic, terrestrial, and arboreal amphibians are often exposed to pesticides during their agricultural application resultin...

  10. Metabolism of pesticides after dermal exposure to amphibians

    EPA Science Inventory

    Understanding how pesticide exposure to non-target species influences toxicity is necessary to accurately assess the ecological risks these compounds pose. Aquatic, terrestrial, and arboreal amphibians are often exposed to pesticides during their agricultural application resultin...

  11. Conservation needs of amphibians in China: a review.

    PubMed

    Xie, Feng; Lau, Michael Wai Neng; Stuart, Simon N; Chanson, Janice S; Cox, Neil A; Fischman, Debra L

    2007-04-01

    The conservation status of all the amphibians in China is analyzed, and the country is shown to be a global priority for conservation in comparison to many other countries of the world. Three Chinese regions are particularly rich in amphibian diversity: Hengduan, Nanling, and Wuyi mountains. Salamanders are more threatened than frogs and toads. Several smaller families show a high propensity to become seriously threatened: Bombinatoridae, Cryptobranchidae, Hynobiidae and Salamandridae. Like other parts of the world, stream-breeding, high-elevation forest amphibians have a much higher likelihood of being seriously threatened. Habitat loss, pollution, and over-harvesting are the most serious threats to Chinese amphibians. Over-harvesting is a less pervasive threat than habitat loss, but it is more likely to drive a species into rapid decline. Five conservation challenges are mentioned with recommendations for the highest priority research and conservation actions.

  12. ALIEN SPECIES: THEIR ROLE IN AMPHIBIAN POPULATION DECLINES AND RESTORATION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Alien species (also referred to as exotic, invasive, introduced, or normative species) have been implicated as causal agents in population declines of many amphibian species. Herein, we evaluate the relative contributions of alien species and other factors in adversely affecting ...

  13. CHARACTERIZATION OF RELATIVE SENSITIVITY OF AMPHIBIANS TO ULTRA VIOLET RADIATION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Different studies have demonstrated that solar ultraviolet (UV) radiation can adversely affect survival and development of embryonic and larval amphibians. However, because of among-laboratory variations in exposure profiles (artificial vs. natural sunlight; natural sunlight at d...

  14. Hot bodies protect amphibians against chytrid infection in nature

    PubMed Central

    Rowley, Jodi J. L.; Alford, Ross A.

    2013-01-01

    Environmental context strongly affects many host-pathogen interactions, but the underlying causes of these effects at the individual level are usually poorly understood. The amphibian chytrid fungus has caused amphibian population declines and extinctions in many parts of the world. Many amphibian species that have declined or have been extirpated by the pathogen in some environments coexist with it in others. Here we show that in three species of rainforest frogs in nature, individuals' probability of infection by the amphibian chytrid fungus was strongly related to their thermal history. Individuals' probability of infection declined rapidly as they spent more time above the pathogen's upper optimum temperature. This relationship can explain population-level patterns of prevalence in nature, and suggests that natural or artificial selection for higher thermal preferences could reduce susceptibility to this pathogen. Similar individual-level insights could improve our understanding of environmental context-dependence in other diseases. PMID:23519020

  15. Book review: Reptiles and amphibians: Self-assessment color review

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Green, David E.

    2017-01-01

    No abstract available.Book information: Reptiles and Amphibians: Self-Assessment Color Review. 2nd Edition. By Fredric L. Frye. CRC Press, Taylor and Francis Group, Boca Raton, Florida USA. 2015. 252 pp. ISBN 9781482257601.

  16. Trends in amphibian occupancy in the United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Adams, Michael J.; Miller, David A.W.; Muths, Erin; Corn, Paul Stephen; Grant, Evan H. Campbell; Bailey, Larissa L.; Fellers, Gary M.; Fisher, Robert N.; Sadinski, Walter J.; Waddle, Hardin; Walls, Susan C.

    2013-01-01

    Though a third of amphibian species worldwide are thought to be imperiled, existing assessments simply categorize extinction risk, providing little information on the rate of population losses. We conducted the first analysis of the rate of change in the probability that amphibians occupy ponds and other comparable habitat features across the United States. We found that overall occupancy by amphibians declined 3.7% annually from 2002 to 2011. Species that are Red-listed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) declined an average of 11.6% annually. All subsets of data examined had a declining trend including species in the IUCN Least Concern category. This analysis suggests that amphibian declines may be more widespread and severe than previously realized.

  17. Invasive and introduced reptiles and amphibians: Chapter 28

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Reed, Robert N.; Krysko, Kenneth L.; Mader, Douglas R.; Divers, Stephen J.

    2014-01-01

    Why is there a section on introduced amphibians and reptiles in this volume, and why should veterinarians care about this issue? Globally, invasive species are a major threat to the stability of native ecosystems,1,2 and amphibians and reptiles are attracting increased attention as potential invaders. Some introduced amphibians and reptiles have had a major impact (e.g., Brown Tree Snakes [Boiga irregularis] wiping out the native birds of Guam3 or Cane Toads [Rhinella marina] poisoning native Australian predators).4 For the vast majority of species, however, the ecological, economic, and sociopolitical effects of introduced amphibians and reptiles are generally poorly quantified, largely because of a lack of focused research effort rather than because such effects are nonexistent. This trend is alarming given that rates of introduction have increased exponentially in recent decades.

  18. CHARACTERIZATION OF RELATIVE SENSITIVITY OF AMPHIBIANS TO ULTRAVIOLET RADIATION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Different studies have demonstrated that solar ultraviolet (UV) radiation can adversely affect survival and development of embryonic and larval amphibians. However, because of among-laboratory variations in exposure profiles (artificial vs. natural sunlight; natural sunlight at d...

  19. Amphibian chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in Cusuco National Park, Honduras.

    PubMed

    Kolby, Jonathan E; Padgett-Flohr, Gretchen E; Field, Richard

    2010-11-01

    Amphibian population declines in Honduras have long been attributed to habitat degradation and pollution, but an increasing number of declines are now being observed from within the boundaries of national parks in pristine montane environments. The amphibian chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis has been implicated in these declines and was recently documented in Honduras from samples collected in Pico Bonito National Park in 2003. This report now confirms Cusuco National Park, a protected cloud forest reserve with reported amphibian declines, to be the second known site of infection for Honduras. B. dendrobatidis infection was detected in 5 amphibian species: Craugastor rostralis, Duellmanohyla soralia, Lithobates maculata, Plectrohyla dasypus, and Ptychohyla hypomykter. D. soralia, P. dasypus, and P. hypomykter are listed as critically endangered in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species and have severely fragmented or restricted distributions. Further investigations are necessary to determine whether observed infection levels indicate an active B. dendrobatidis epizootic with the potential to cause further population declines and extinction.

  20. CHARACTERIZATION OF RELATIVE SENSITIVITY OF AMPHIBIANS TO ULTRA VIOLET RADIATION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Different studies have demonstrated that solar ultraviolet (UV) radiation can adversely affect survival and development of embryonic and larval amphibians. However, because of among-laboratory variations in exposure profiles (artificial vs. natural sunlight; natural sunlight at d...

  1. ALIEN SPECIES: THEIR ROLE IN AMPHIBIAN POPULATION DECLINES AND RESTORATION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Alien species (also referred to as exotic, invasive, introduced, or normative species) have been implicated as causal agents in population declines of many amphibian species. Herein, we evaluate the relative contributions of alien species and other factors in adversely affecting ...

  2. Actions of antidiuretic hormone analogues on intact and nystatin-permeabilized frog skins.

    PubMed

    Jared, Silviya Rajakumari; Rao, J Prakasa; Subramani, Sathya

    2009-12-01

    The roles of two antidiuretic hormone analogues, namely arginine vasotocin (AVT) and lysine vasopressin (LVP), in solute transport across the ventral abdominal skin of frogs (Rana hexadactyla) were studied using voltage-clamp methods on intact and nystatin-permeabilized preparations. Arginine vasotocin (40 nm), the amphibian analogue of antidiuretic hormone, did not have any effect on the skin of Rana hexadactyla. However, LVP, the porcine antidiuretic hormone, increased the transepithelial potential difference (TEPD) and short-circuit current (SCC) significantly, without affecting the slope conductance. Lysine vasopressin had no action subsequent to addition of amiloride (100 microm) on the apical side or ouabain (10 microm) on the basolateral side. Lysine vasopressin increased slope conductance in the nystatin-permeablized skin while decreasing TEPD. Such a change was not seen in chloride-free solutions. To elucidate the mechanism of action of LVP on intact skin, experiments were done with forskolin and a V(2) receptor blocker. The effects of forskolin (10 microm) were different from those of LVP in that forskolin significantly increased SCC and conductance of the intact skin, while decreasing TEPD. The forskolin-induced increase in conductance was not abolished by amiloride. Use of the V(2) receptor blocker inhibited the effects of LVP. We conclude that AVT does not have an action on the skin of Rana hexadactyla. Lysine vasopressin enhances transepithelial sodium transport by increasing sodium-potassium pump activity, while not affecting the epithelial sodium channel conductance. Lysine vasopressin also enhances an inward-directed conductance on the basolateral membrane, probably a chloride conductance. The action of LVP on the intact frog skin is through the V(2) receptors; however, downstream signalling does not seem to be mediated by cAMP. Analysis of the electrophysiological model of frog skin with LVP allows us additionally to conclude that modulation of

  3. Resistance to cancer in amphibians: a role for apoptosis?

    PubMed

    Ruben, Laurens N; Johnson, Rachel O; Clothier, Richard H; Balls, Michael

    2013-07-01

    The rarity of spontaneous cancer in amphibians, and the difficulty of inducing cancer in these lower vertebrates, suggest that they possess an effective system for resistance to the development of cancer. The first part of this narrative presents evidence for cancer resistance in amphibians, and then a variety of studies designed to help understand the physiological basis for this resistance are reviewed. Here, our emphasis is on evidence with regard to the role that apoptosis might play.

  4. Tropical amphibian populations experience higher disease risk in natural habitats.

    PubMed

    Becker, C Guilherme; Zamudio, Kelly R

    2011-06-14

    Habitat loss and disease are main drivers of global amphibian declines, yet the interaction between them remains largely unexplored. Here we show that paradoxically, habitat loss is negatively associated with occurrence, prevalence, and infection intensity of the chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) in amphibian populations in the tropics. At a large spatial scale, increased habitat loss predicted lower disease risk in amphibian populations across Costa Rica and eastern Australia, even after jointly considering the effect of potential biotic and abiotic correlates. Lower host-species richness and suboptimal microclimates for Bd in disturbed habitats are potential mechanisms underlying this pattern. Furthermore, we found that anthropogenic deforestation practices biased to lowlands and natural vegetation remaining in inaccessible highlands explain increased Bd occurrence at higher elevations. At a smaller spatial scale, holding constant elevation, latitude, and macroclimate, we also found a negative relationship between habitat loss, and both Bd prevalence and infection intensity in frog populations in two landscapes of the Brazilian Atlantic Forest. Our results indicate that amphibians will be disproportionately affected by emerging diseases in pristine environments, and that, paradoxically, disturbed habitats may act as shelters from disease, but only for the very few species that can tolerate deforestation. Thus, tropical amphibian faunas are threatened both by destruction of natural habitats as well as increased disease in pristine forests. To curb further extinctions and develop effective mitigation and restoration programs we must look to interactions between habitat loss and disease, the two main factors at the root of global amphibian declines.

  5. Why amphibians are more sensitive than mammals to xenobiotics.

    PubMed

    Quaranta, Angelo; Bellantuono, Vito; Cassano, Giuseppe; Lippe, Claudio

    2009-11-04

    Dramatic declines in amphibian populations have been described all over the world since the 1980s. The evidence that the sensitivity to environmental threats is greater in amphibians than in mammals has been generally linked to the observation that amphibians are characterized by a rather permeable skin. Nevertheless, a numerical comparison of data of percutaneous (through the skin) passage between amphibians and mammals is lacking. Therefore, in this investigation we have measured the percutaneous passage of two test molecules (mannitol and antipyrine) and three heavily used herbicides (atrazine, paraquat and glyphosate) in the skin of the frog Rana esculenta (amphibians) and of the pig ear (mammals), by using the same experimental protocol and a simple apparatus which minimizes the edge effect, occurring when the tissue is clamped in the usually used experimental device.The percutaneous passage (P) of each substance is much greater in frog than in pig. LogP is linearly related to logKow (logarithm of the octanol-water partition coefficient). The measured P value of atrazine was about 134 times larger than that of glyphosate in frog skin, but only 12 times in pig ear skin. The FoD value (Pfrog/Ppig) was 302 for atrazine, 120 for antipyrine, 66 for mannitol, 29 for paraquat, and 26 for glyphosate.The differences in structure and composition of the skin between amphibians and mammals are discussed.

  6. Tropical amphibian populations experience higher disease risk in natural habitats

    PubMed Central

    Becker, C. Guilherme; Zamudio, Kelly R.

    2011-01-01

    Habitat loss and disease are main drivers of global amphibian declines, yet the interaction between them remains largely unexplored. Here we show that paradoxically, habitat loss is negatively associated with occurrence, prevalence, and infection intensity of the chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) in amphibian populations in the tropics. At a large spatial scale, increased habitat loss predicted lower disease risk in amphibian populations across Costa Rica and eastern Australia, even after jointly considering the effect of potential biotic and abiotic correlates. Lower host-species richness and suboptimal microclimates for Bd in disturbed habitats are potential mechanisms underlying this pattern. Furthermore, we found that anthropogenic deforestation practices biased to lowlands and natural vegetation remaining in inaccessible highlands explain increased Bd occurrence at higher elevations. At a smaller spatial scale, holding constant elevation, latitude, and macroclimate, we also found a negative relationship between habitat loss, and both Bd prevalence and infection intensity in frog populations in two landscapes of the Brazilian Atlantic Forest. Our results indicate that amphibians will be disproportionately affected by emerging diseases in pristine environments, and that, paradoxically, disturbed habitats may act as shelters from disease, but only for the very few species that can tolerate deforestation. Thus, tropical amphibian faunas are threatened both by destruction of natural habitats as well as increased disease in pristine forests. To curb further extinctions and develop effective mitigation and restoration programs we must look to interactions between habitat loss and disease, the two main factors at the root of global amphibian declines. PMID:21628560

  7. Predation of Ladybird Beetles (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) by Amphibians

    PubMed Central

    Sloggett, John J.

    2012-01-01

    Studies of predation of ladybird beetles (Coccinellidae) have focused on a limited number of predator taxa, such as birds and ants, while other potential predators have received limited attention. I here consider amphibians as predators of ladybirds. Published amphibian gut analyses show that ladybirds are quite often eaten by frogs and toads (Anura), with recorded frequencies reaching up to 15% of dietary items. Salamanders (Caudata) eat ladybirds less frequently, probably as their habits less often bring them into contact with the beetles. Amphibians do not appear to be deleteriously affected by the potentially toxic alkaloids that ladybirds possess. Amphibians, especially frogs and toads, use primarily prey movement as a release cue to attack their food; it is thus likely that their ability to discriminate against ladybirds and other chemically defended prey is limited. Because of this poor discriminatory power, amphibians have apparently evolved non-specific resistance to prey defensive chemicals, including ladybird alkaloids. Although amphibian-related ladybird mortality is limited, in certain habitats it could outweigh mortality from more frequently studied predators, notably birds. The gut analyses from the herpetological literature used in this study, suggest that in studying predation of insects, entomologists should consider specialized literature on other animal groups. PMID:26466621

  8. Value of artificial habitats for amphibian reproduction in altered landscapes.

    PubMed

    Brand, Adrianne B; Snodgrass, Joel W

    2010-02-01

    Installation and maintenance of stormwater ponds to detain and treat runoff from impervious surfaces is a common method of stormwater control in developed areas. That these ponds capture pollutants, however, is of concern for wildlife species that use the ponds, particularly pond-breeding amphibians. To assess the relative contribution of stormwater ponds to the persistence of amphibian populations in suburban landscapes, we compared amphibian use of stormwater ponds and other available wetlands in suburban and forested watersheds. We surveyed three suburban and three primarily forested first-order watersheds to identify all potential wetlands that might serve as breeding sites for pond-breeding amphibians. We performed call, egg-mass, and larval surveys to measure breeding effort at each wetland in spring and summer 2007 and 2008. In suburban watersheds most (89%) of the wetlands that had breeding activity were either stormwater ponds or otherwise artificial. This pattern was also evident in the forested watersheds, where amphibians were primarily found breeding in wetlands created by past human activity. Late-stage larvae were found only in anthropogenic wetlands in all study areas because the remaining natural wetlands did not hold water long enough for larvae to complete development. Our results suggest that in urban and suburban landscapes with naturally low densities of wetlands, wetlands created by current or historic land uses may be as important to amphibian conservation as natural wetlands or pools and that management strategies directed at urban and suburban landscapes should recognize and incorporate human-created wetlands.

  9. Global amphibian declines: perspectives from the United States and beyond

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Densmore, Christine L.; Cipriano, R.C.; Bruckner, A.W.; Shchelkunov, I.S.

    2011-01-01

    Over recent decades, amphibians have experienced population declines, extirpations and species-level extinctions at an alarming rate. Numerous potential etiologies for amphibian declines have been postulated including climate and habitat degradation. Other potential anthropogenic causes including overexploitation and the frequent introductions of invasive predatory species have also been blamed for amphibian declines. Still other underlying factors may include infectious diseases caused by the chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, pathogenic viruses (Ranavirus), and other agents. It is nearly certain that more than one etiology is to blame for the majority of the global amphibian declines, and that these causal factors include some combination of climatological or physical habitat destabilization and infectious disease, most notably chytridiomycosis. Scientific research efforts are aimed at elucidating these etiologies on local, regional, and global scales that we might better understand and counteract the driving forces behind amphibian declines. Conservation efforts as outlined in the Amphibian Conservation Action Plan of 2005 are also being made to curtail losses and prevent further extinctions wherever possible.

  10. Monitoring amphibians in Great Smoky Mountains National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dodd, C. Kenneth

    2003-01-01

    This report provides an overview of the Park’s amphibians, the factors affecting their distribution, a review of important areas of biodiversity, and a summary of amphibian life history in the Southern Appalachians. In addition, survey techniques are described as well as examples of how the techniques are set up, a critique of what the results tell the observer, and a discussion of the limitations of the techniques and the data. The report reviews considerations for site selection, outlines steps for biosecurity and for processing diseased or dying animals, and provides resource managers with a decision tree on how to monitor the Park’s amphibians based on different levels of available resources. It concludes with an extensive list of references for inventorying and monitoring amphibians. USGS and Great Smoky Mountains National Park biologists need to establish cooperative efforts and training to ensure that congressionally mandated amphibian surveys are performed in a statistically rigorous and biologically meaningful manner, and that amphibian populations on Federal lands are monitored to ensure their long-term survival. The research detailed in this report will aid these cooperative efforts.

  11. Predation of Ladybird Beetles (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) by Amphibians.

    PubMed

    Sloggett, John J

    2012-07-18

    Studies of predation of ladybird beetles (Coccinellidae) have focused on a limited number of predator taxa, such as birds and ants, while other potential predators have received limited attention. I here consider amphibians as predators of ladybirds. Published amphibian gut analyses show that ladybirds are quite often eaten by frogs and toads (Anura), with recorded frequencies reaching up to 15% of dietary items. Salamanders (Caudata) eat ladybirds less frequently, probably as their habits less often bring them into contact with the beetles. Amphibians do not appear to be deleteriously affected by the potentially toxic alkaloids that ladybirds possess. Amphibians, especially frogs and toads, use primarily prey movement as a release cue to attack their food; it is thus likely that their ability to discriminate against ladybirds and other chemically defended prey is limited. Because of this poor discriminatory power, amphibians have apparently evolved non-specific resistance to prey defensive chemicals, including ladybird alkaloids. Although amphibian-related ladybird mortality is limited, in certain habitats it could outweigh mortality from more frequently studied predators, notably birds. The gut analyses from the herpetological literature used in this study, suggest that in studying predation of insects, entomologists should consider specialized literature on other animal groups.

  12. Global patterns of diversification in the history of modern amphibians

    PubMed Central

    Roelants, Kim; Gower, David J.; Wilkinson, Mark; Loader, Simon P.; Biju, S. D.; Guillaume, Karen; Moriau, Linde; Bossuyt, Franky

    2007-01-01

    The fossil record of modern amphibians (frogs, salamanders, and caecilians) provides no evidence for major extinction or radiation episodes throughout most of the Mesozoic and early Tertiary. However, long-term gradual diversification is difficult to reconcile with the sensitivity of present-day amphibian faunas to rapid ecological changes and the incidence of similar environmental perturbations in the past that have been associated with high turnover rates in other land vertebrates. To provide a comprehensive overview of the history of amphibian diversification, we constructed a phylogenetic timetree based on a multigene data set of 3.75 kb for 171 species. Our analyses reveal several episodes of accelerated amphibian diversification, which do not fit models of gradual lineage accumulation. Global turning points in the phylogenetic and ecological diversification occurred after the end-Permian mass extinction and in the late Cretaceous. Fluctuations in amphibian diversification show strong temporal correlation with turnover rates in amniotes and the rise of angiosperm-dominated forests. Approximately 86% of modern frog species and >81% of salamander species descended from only five ancestral lineages that produced major radiations in the late Cretaceous and early Tertiary. This proportionally late accumulation of extant lineage diversity contrasts with the long evolutionary history of amphibians but is in line with the Tertiary increase in fossil abundance toward the present. PMID:17213318

  13. Global patterns of diversification in the history of modern amphibians.

    PubMed

    Roelants, Kim; Gower, David J; Wilkinson, Mark; Loader, Simon P; Biju, S D; Guillaume, Karen; Moriau, Linde; Bossuyt, Franky

    2007-01-16

    The fossil record of modern amphibians (frogs, salamanders, and caecilians) provides no evidence for major extinction or radiation episodes throughout most of the Mesozoic and early Tertiary. However, long-term gradual diversification is difficult to reconcile with the sensitivity of present-day amphibian faunas to rapid ecological changes and the incidence of similar environmental perturbations in the past that have been associated with high turnover rates in other land vertebrates. To provide a comprehensive overview of the history of amphibian diversification, we constructed a phylogenetic timetree based on a multigene data set of 3.75 kb for 171 species. Our analyses reveal several episodes of accelerated amphibian diversification, which do not fit models of gradual lineage accumulation. Global turning points in the phylogenetic and ecological diversification occurred after the end-Permian mass extinction and in the late Cretaceous. Fluctuations in amphibian diversification show strong temporal correlation with turnover rates in amniotes and the rise of angiosperm-dominated forests. Approximately 86% of modern frog species and >81% of salamander species descended from only five ancestral lineages that produced major radiations in the late Cretaceous and early Tertiary. This proportionally late accumulation of extant lineage diversity contrasts with the long evolutionary history of amphibians but is in line with the Tertiary increase in fossil abundance toward the present.

  14. Multiple stressor effects in relation to declining amphibian populations

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Linder, Greg L.; Krest, Sherry K.; Sparling, Donald; Little, E.

    2003-01-01

    Original research discusses the protocols and approaches to studying the effects of multiple environmental stressors on amphibian populations and gives new perspectives on this complicated subject. This new publication integrates a variety of stressors that can act in concert and may ultimately cause a decline in amphibian populations.Sixteen peer-reviewed papers cover:Toxicity Assessment examines methods, which range from long-established laboratory approaches for evaluating adverse chemical effects to amphibians, to methods that link chemicals in surface waters, sediments, and soils with adverse effects observed among amphibians in the field.Field and Laboratory Studies illustrates studies in the evaluation of multiple stressor effects that may lead to declining amphibian populations. A range of laboratory and field studies of chemicals, such as herbicides, insecticides, chlorinated organic compounds, metals, and complex mixtures are also included.Causal Analysis demonstrates the range of tools currently available for evaluating "cause-effect" relationships between environmental stressors and declining amphibian populations.Audience: This new publication is a must-have for scientists and resource management professionals from diverse fields, including ecotoxicology, chemistry, ecology, field biology, conservation biology, and natural resource management.

  15. ISOLATION OF SKELETAL MUSCLE NUCLEI

    PubMed Central

    Edelman, Jean C.; Edelman, P. Michael; Knigge, Karl M.; Schwartz, Irving L.

    1965-01-01

    A method employing aqueous media for isolation of nuclei from rat skeletal muscle is described. The technique involves (a) mincing and then homogenizing in a 0.32 M sucrose-salt solution with a Potter-Elvehjem type homogenizer using a Delrin (an acetal resin) pestle and a carefully controlled, relatively large pestle-to-glass clearance, (b) filtering through fiberglass and stainless steel screens of predetermined mesh size to remove myofibrils and connective tissue, and (c) centrifuging in a 2.15 M sucrose-salt solution containing 0.7 mM ATP. Electron and phase-contrast microscopic observations show that the nuclei are intact, unencumbered by cytoplasmic tags, and possess well preserved distinct nucleoli, nucleoplasm, and nuclear membranes. Cytoplasmic contamination is minimal and mainly mitochondrial. Chemical assays of the nuclear fraction show that the DNA/protein and RNA/DNA ratios are comparable to those obtained in other tissues. These ratios, as well as the low specific activity obtained for cytochrome c oxidase and the virtual absence of myofibrillar ATPase, indicate a high degree of purity with minimal mitochondrial and myofibrillar contamination. The steps comprising the technique and the reasons for their selection are discussed. PMID:4287141

  16. Skeletal abnormalities in homocystinuria.

    PubMed Central

    Brenton, D. P.

    1977-01-01

    The skeletal changes of thirty-four patients with the biochemical and clinical features of cystathionine synthase deficiency are described. It is emphasized that there is clinical evidence of excessive bone growth and the formation for bone which is structurally weaker than normal. The similarities and differences between this condition and Marfan's syndrome are stressed and the possible nature of the connective tissue defect leading to the skeletal changes discussed. The most characteristic skeletal changes in homocystinuria are the skeletal disproportion (pubis-heel length greater than crown-pubis length), the abnormal vertebrae, sternal deformities, genu valgum and large metaphyses and epiphyses. Images Fig. 2 Fig. 3 Fig. 4 Fig. 8 Fig. 9 Fig. 10 PMID:917963

  17. Calorie restriction and susceptibility to intact pathogens

    PubMed Central

    2008-01-01

    Long-term calorie restriction (CR) causes numerous physiological changes that ultimately increase mean and maximum lifespan of most species examined to date. One physiological change that occurs with CR is enhanced immune function, as tested using antigens and mitogens to stimulate an immune response. Fewer studies have used intact pathogen exposure to test whether the enhanced capacity of the immune response during CR actually decreases susceptibility of hosts to their pathogens. So far, studies using intact bacteria, virus, and helminth worm exposure indicate that, despite similar or enhanced immune system function, CR hosts are more susceptible to infection by intact pathogens than their fully fed counterparts. Long-term CR studies that examine susceptibility to a variety of parasite taxa will help determine if direct CR or CR mimetics will be beneficial to people living in pathogen-rich environments. PMID:19424864

  18. Amphibian populations in the terrestrial environment: Is there evidence of declines of terrestrial forest amphibians in northwestern California?

    Treesearch

    Hartwell H. Welsh Jr.; Gary M. Fellers; Amy J. Lind

    2007-01-01

    Amphibian declines have been documented worldwide; however the vast majority are species associated with aquatic habitats. Information on the status and trends of terrestrial amphibians is almost entirely lacking. Here we use data collected across a 12-yr period (sampling from 1984–86 and from 1993–95) to address the question of whether evidence exists for declines...

  19. Autism Spectrum Disorder and intact executive functioning.

    PubMed

    Ferrara, R; Ansermet, F; Massoni, F; Petrone, L; Onofri, E; Ricci, P; Archer, T; Ricci, S

    2016-01-01

    Earliest notions concerning autism (Autism Spectrum Disorders, ASD) describe the disturbance in executive functioning. Despite altered definition, executive functioning, expressed as higher cognitive skills required complex behaviors linked to the prefrontal cortex, are defective in autism. Specific difficulties in children presenting autism or verbal disabilities at executive functioning levels have been identified. Nevertheless, the developmental deficit of executive functioning in autism is highly diversified with huge individual variation and may even be absent. The aim of the present study to examine the current standing of intact executive functioning intact in ASD.

  20. Ryanodine interferes with charge movement repriming in amphibian skeletal muscle fibers.

    PubMed Central

    Gonzalez, A; Caputo, C

    1996-01-01

    Cut twitch muscle fibers mounted in a triple Vaseline-gap chamber were used to study the effects of ryanodine on intramembranous charge movement, and in particular on the repriming of charge 1. Charge 1 repriming was measured either under steady-state conditions or by using a pulse protocol designed to study the time course of repriming. This protocol consisted of repolarizing the fibers to -100 mV from a holding potential of 0 mV, and then measuring the reprimed charge moving in the potential range between -40 and +20 mV. Ryanodine at a high concentration (100 microM) did not affect the maximum amount of movable charge 1 and charge 2, or their voltage dependence. This indicates that the alkaloid does not interact with the voltage sensor molecules. However, ryanodine did reduce the amount of reprimed charge 1 by approximately 60% suggesting the possibility of a retrograde interaction between ryanodine receptors and voltage sensors. PMID:8770214

  1. Calcium transients in isolated amphibian skeletal muscle fibres: detection with aequorin.

    PubMed Central

    Blinks, J R; Rüdel, R; Taylor, S R

    1978-01-01

    1. Single twitch muscle fibres isolated from frogs and toads were microinjected with the Ca2+-sensitive bioluminescent protein aequorin. The fibres contracted normally and emitted flashes of light (aequorin responses) in response to stimulation for many hours thereafter. 2. No luminescence was detected from healthy fibres at rest. 3. The aequorin diffused from the site of injection at a rate consistent with a diffusion coefficient of 5 x 10(-8) cm2/sec. 4. During trains of isometric contractions there was a progressive reduction in both the amplitude and the rate of decline of the aequorin response, an observation consistent with the theory that Ca is redistributed from sites of release to sites of sequestration under such circumstances. 5. In isometric tetani light emission continued to rise long after the plateau of force had been achieved. This and the fact that the amplitude of the tetanic aequorin response increased steeply with increasing stimulus frequency suggest that in tetani the sarcoplasmic [Ca2+] may normally be above the level required to saturate the contractile apparatus. 6. Both in twitches and in tetani the amplitude of the aequorin response increased slightly and then decreased substantially as the fibre was stretched progressively beyond slack length. 7. In potassium contractures the luminescent and mechanical responses first became detectable at about the same [K+], but for equivalent force luminescence was less intense than in twitches. The aequorin response was biphasic in solutions of high [K+]. 8. Exposure of the fibre to Ca2+-free solutions had no influence on either the mechanical or the luminescent responses in twitches. In Ca2+-free solutions tetanic aequorin responses tended not to be maintained as well as normally, suggesting that intracellular Ca stores do become somewhat depleted. 9. In twitches the amplitude of the aequorin response probably reflects the amount of Ca2+ liberated into the cytoplasm rather than a [Ca2+] in equilibrium with the myofilaments. Changes in the rate of decay of the aequorin response may reflect changes in the rate of Ca sequestration by the sarcoplasmic reticulum. 10. In K+-contractures and during the plateaus of tetani the aequorin signal changes slowly enough so that it seems unlikely that substantial gradients of [Ca2+] exist at the sarcomere level. Under such circumstances the amplitude of the aequorin response probably does reflect the [Ca2+] in equilibrium with the myofilaments. Images Plate 1 PMID:306438

  2. The influence of intracellular lactate and H+ on cell volume in amphibian skeletal muscle

    PubMed Central

    Usher-Smith, Juliet A; Fraser, James A; Bailey, Peter S J; Griffin, Julian L; Huang, Christopher L-H

    2006-01-01

    The combined effects of intracellular lactate and proton accumulation on cell volume, Vc, were investigated in resting Rana temporaria striated muscle fibres. Intracellular lactate and H+ concentrations were simultaneously increased by exposing resting muscle fibres to extracellular solutions that contained 20–80 mm sodium lactate. Cellular H+ and lactate entry was confirmed using pH-sensitive electrodes and 1H-NMR, respectively, and effects on Vc were measured using confocal microscope xz-scanning. Exposure to extracellular lactate up to 80 mm produced significant changes in pH and intracellular lactate (from a pH of 7.24 ± 0.03, n = 8, and 4.65 ± 1.07 mm, n = 6, respectively, in control fibres, to 6.59 ± 0.03, n = 4, and 26.41 ± 0.92 mm, n = 3, respectively) that were comparable to those observed following fatiguing stimulation (6.30–6.70 and 18.04 ± 1.78 mm, n = 6, respectively). Yet, the increase in intracellular osmolarity expected from such an increase in intracellular lactate did not significantly alter Vc. Simulation of these experimental results, modified from the charge difference model of Fraser & Huang, demonstrated that such experimental manoeuvres produced changes in intracellular [H+] and [lactate] comparable to those observed during muscle fatigue, and accounted for this paradoxical conservation of Vc through balancing negative osmotic effects resulting from the net cation efflux that would follow a titration of intracellular membrane-impermeant anions by the intracellular accumulation of protons. It demonstrated that with established physiological values for intracellular buffering capacity and the permeability ratio of lactic acid and anionic lactate, PLacH: PLac−, this would provide a mechanism that precisely balanced any effect on cell volume resulting from lactate accumulation during exercise. PMID:16613877

  3. Historical amphibian declines and extinctions in Brazil linked to chytridiomycosis.

    PubMed

    Carvalho, Tamilie; Becker, C Guilherme; Toledo, Luís Felipe

    2017-02-08

    The recent increase in emerging fungal diseases is causing unprecedented threats to biodiversity. The origin of spread of the frog-killing fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) is a matter of continued debate. To date, the historical amphibian declines in Brazil could not be attributed to chytridiomycosis; the high diversity of hosts coupled with the presence of several Bd lineages predating the reported declines raised the hypothesis that a hypervirulent Bd genotype spread from Brazil to other continents causing the recent global amphibian crisis. We tested for a spatio-temporal overlap between Bd and areas of historical amphibian population declines and extinctions in Brazil. A spatio-temporal convergence between Bd and declines would support the hypothesis that Brazilian amphibians were not adapted to Bd prior to the reported declines, thus weakening the hypothesis that Brazil was the global origin of Bd emergence. Alternatively, a lack of spatio-temporal association between Bd and frog declines would indicate an evolution of host resistance in Brazilian frogs predating Bd's global emergence, further supporting Brazil as the potential origin of the Bd panzootic. Here, we Bd-screened over 30 000 museum-preserved tadpoles collected in Brazil between 1930 and 2015 and overlaid spatio-temporal Bd data with areas of historical amphibian declines. We detected an increase in the proportion of Bd-infected tadpoles during the peak of amphibian declines (1979-1987). We also found that clusters of Bd-positive samples spatio-temporally overlapped with most records of amphibian declines in Brazil's Atlantic Forest. Our findings indicate that Brazil is post epizootic for chytridiomycosis and provide another piece to the puzzle to explain the origin of Bd globally. © 2017 The Author(s).

  4. Translocations of amphibians: Proven management method or experimental technique

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Seigel, Richard A.; Dodd, C. Kenneth

    2002-01-01

    In an otherwise excellent review of metapopulation dynamics in amphibians, Marsh and Trenham (2001) make the following provocative statements (emphasis added): If isolation effects occur primarily in highly disturbed habitats, species translocations may be necessary to promote local and regional population persistence. Because most amphibians lack parental care, they areprime candidates for egg and larval translocations. Indeed, translocations have already proven successful for several species of amphibians. Where populations are severely isolated, translocations into extinct subpopulations may be the best strategy to promote regional population persistence. We take issue with these statements for a number of reasons. First, the authors fail to cite much of the relevant literature on species translocations in general and for amphibians in particular. Second, to those unfamiliar with current research in amphibian conservation biology, these comments might suggest that translocations are a proven management method. This is not the case, at least in most instances where translocations have been evaluated for an appropriate period of time. Finally, the authors fail to point out some of the negative aspects of species translocation as a management method. We realize that Marsh and Trenham's paper was not concerned primarily with translocations. However, because Marsh and Trenham (2001) made specific recommendations for conservation planners and managers (many of whom are not herpetologists or may not be familiar with the pertinent literature on amphibians), we believe that it is essential to point out that not all amphibian biologists are as comfortable with translocations as these authors appear to be. We especially urge caution about advocating potentially unproven techniques without a thorough review of available options.

  5. Deciphering amphibian diversity through DNA barcoding: chances and challenges.

    PubMed

    Vences, Miguel; Thomas, Meike; Bonett, Ronald M; Vieites, David R

    2005-10-29

    Amphibians globally are in decline, yet there is still a tremendous amount of unrecognized diversity, calling for an acceleration of taxonomic exploration. This process will be greatly facilitated by a DNA barcoding system; however, the mitochondrial population structure of many amphibian species presents numerous challenges to such a standardized, single locus, approach. Here we analyse intra- and interspecific patterns of mitochondrial variation in two distantly related groups of amphibians, mantellid frogs and salamanders, to determine the promise of DNA barcoding with cytochrome oxidase subunit I (cox1) sequences in this taxon. High intraspecific cox1 divergences of 7-14% were observed (18% in one case) within the whole set of amphibian sequences analysed. These high values are not caused by particularly high substitution rates of this gene but by generally deep mitochondrial divergences within and among amphibian species. Despite these high divergences, cox1 sequences were able to correctly identify species including disparate geographic variants. The main problems with cox1 barcoding of amphibians are (i) the high variability of priming sites that hinder the application of universal primers to all species and (ii) the observed distinct overlap of intraspecific and interspecific divergence values, which implies difficulties in the definition of threshold values to identify candidate species. Common discordances between geographical signatures of mitochondrial and nuclear markers in amphibians indicate that a single-locus approach can be problematic when high accuracy of DNA barcoding is required. We suggest that a number of mitochondrial and nuclear genes may be used as DNA barcoding markers to complement cox1.

  6. Amphibian occurrence is influenced by current and historic landscape characteristics.

    PubMed

    Piha, Henna; Luoto, Miska; Merilä, Juha

    2007-12-01

    Human-induced habitat loss and degradation are major threats to wetland species as reflected in the fact that wetlands have declined by more than 50% in Europe and North America during the last century. Both current and historic land-use patterns are likely to be significant determinants of wetland species' distributions; however their relative importance is often unknown. We studied the importance of local (study pond) and landscape (current and 18th-century landscape) characteristics in explaining the occurrence and species richness of amphibians (Rana arvalis, Bufo bufo, and Triturus vulgaris) on the Swedish island of Gotland, where more than 40% of wetlands have been lost since the 18th century. Current local habitat characteristics were the strongest determinants of occurrence for all study species. Additionally, species occurrence was related to current and historic landscape characteristics, which generally explained equal amounts of the variation in species-occurrence data. The proportions of both current and historic arable land were negative determinants of amphibian occurrence and species richness, indicating that agricultural land use may have an overall negative impact on amphibians, and that amphibians may occur less frequently in areas with a long agricultural history. Likewise, historic forest area was positively related to B. bufo occurrence and species richness, whereas current forests had no significant effects, suggesting that there may be a lag in the response of amphibians to agriculture-mediated habitat loss. Our results suggest that historic land-use patterns may influence current amphibian populations and that inclusion of historic land-use information could be a valuable tool in future studies on amphibian-habitat relations.

  7. Developments in amphibian captive breeding and reintroduction programs.

    PubMed

    Harding, Gemma; Griffiths, Richard A; Pavajeau, Lissette

    2016-04-01

    Captive breeding and reintroduction remain high profile but controversial conservation interventions. It is important to understand how such programs develop and respond to strategic conservation initiatives. We analyzed the contribution to conservation made by amphibian captive breeding and reintroduction since the launch of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Amphibian Conservation Action Plan (ACAP) in 2007. We assembled data on amphibian captive breeding and reintroduction from a variety of sources including the Amphibian Ark database and the IUCN Red List. We also carried out systematic searches of Web of Science, JSTOR, and Google Scholar for relevant literature. Relative to data collected from 1966 to 2006, the number of species involved in captive breeding and reintroduction projects increased by 57% in the 7 years since release of the ACAP. However, there have been relatively few new reintroductions over this period; most programs have focused on securing captive-assurance populations (i.e., species taken into captivity as a precaution against extinctions in the wild) and conservation-related research. There has been a shift to a broader representation of frogs, salamanders, and caecilians within programs and an increasing emphasis on threatened species. There has been a relative increase of species in programs from Central and South America and the Caribbean, where amphibian biodiversity is high. About half of the programs involve zoos and aquaria with a similar proportion represented in specialist facilities run by governmental or nongovernmental agencies. Despite successful reintroduction often being regarded as the ultimate milestone for such programs, the irreversibility of many current threats to amphibians may make this an impractical goal. Instead, research on captive assurance populations may be needed to develop imaginative solutions to enable amphibians to survive alongside current, emerging, and future threats.

  8. HYDROCARBON VAPOR DIFFUSION IN INTACT CORE SLEEVES

    EPA Science Inventory

    The diffusion of 2,2,4-trimethylpentane (TMP) and 2,2,5-trimethylhexane (TMH) vapors put of residually contaminated sandy soil from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) field research site at Traverse City, Michigan, was measured and modeled. The headspace of an intact ...

  9. HYDROCARBON VAPOR DIFFUSION IN INTACT CORE SLEEVES

    EPA Science Inventory

    The diffusion of 2,2,4-trimethylpentane (TMP) and 2,2,5-trimethylhexane (TMH) vapors put of residually contaminated sandy soil from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) field research site at Traverse City, Michigan, was measured and modeled. The headspace of an intact ...

  10. Comparison of amphibian and mammalian thyroperoxidase ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Thyroperoxidase (TPO) catalyzes the production of thyroid hormones in the vertebrate thyroid gland by oxidizing iodide (I- ) to produce iodinated tyrosines on thyroglobulin, and further coupling of specific mono- or di-iodinated tyrosines to generate the triiodo- and tetra-iodothyronine, precursors to thyroid hormone. This enzyme is a target for thyroid disrupting chemicals. TPO-inhibition by xenobiotics is a molecular initiating event that is known to perturb the thyroid axis by preventing synthesis of thyroid hormone. Previous work on TPO-inhibition has been focused on mammalian TPO; specifically, the rat and pig. A primary objective of this experiment was to directly measure TPO activity in a non-mammalian system, in this case a thyroid gland homogenate from Xenopus laevis; as well as compare chemical inhibition from past mammalian studies to the amphibian data generated. Thyroid glands obtained from X. laevis tadpoles at NF stages 58-60, were pooled and homogenized by sonication in phosphate buffer. This homogenate was then used to test 24 chemicals for inhibition of TPO as measured by conversion of Amplex UltraRed (AUR) substrate to its fluorescent product. The test chemicals were selected based upon previous results from rat in vitro TPO assays, and X. laevis in vitro and in vivo studies for thyroid disrupting endpoints, and included both positive and negative chemicals in these assays. An initial screening of the chemicals was done at a single high con

  11. Mechanics of Blastopore Closure during Amphibian Gastrulation

    PubMed Central

    Feroze, Rafey; Shawky, Joseph H.; von Dassow, Michelangelo; Davidson, Lance A.

    2014-01-01

    Blastopore closure in the amphibian embryo involves large scale tissue reorganization driven by physical forces. These forces are tuned to generate sustained blastopore closure throughout the course of gastrulation. We describe the mechanics of blastopore closure at multiple scales and in different regions around the blastopore by characterizing large scale tissue deformations, cell level shape change and subcellular F-actin organization and by measuring tissue force production and structural stiffness of the blastopore during gastrulation. We find that the embryo generates a ramping magnitude of force until it reaches a peak force on the order of 0.5 μ Newtons. During this time course, the embryo also stiffens 1.5 fold. Strain rate mapping of the dorsal, ventral and lateral epithelial cells proximal to the blastopore reveals changing patterns of strain rate throughout closure. Cells dorsal to the blastopore, which are fated to become neural plate ectoderm, are polarized and have straight boundaries. In contrast, cells lateral and ventral to the blastopore are less polarized and have tortuous cell boundaries. The F-actin network is organized differently in each region with the highest percentage of alignment occurring in the lateral region. Interestingly F-actin was consistently oriented toward the blastopore lip in dorsal and lateral cells, but oriented parallel to the lip in ventral regions. Cell shape and F-actin alignment analyses reveal different local mechanical environments in regions around the blastopore, which was reflected by the strain rate maps. PMID:25448691

  12. Applying Metabolomics to differentiate amphibian responses ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Introduction/Objectives/Methods One of the biggest challenges in ecological risk assessment is determining the impact of multiple stressors on individual organisms and populations in ‘real world’ scenarios. Emerging ‘omic technologies, notably, metabolomics, provides an opportunity to address the uncertainties surrounding ecological risk assessment of multiple stressors. The objective of this study was to use a metabolomics biomarker approach to investigate the effect of multiple stressors on amphibian metamorphs. To this end, metamorphs of Rana pipiens (northern leopard frogs) were exposed to the insecticide Carbaryl (0.32 μg/L), a conspecific predator alarm call (Lithobates catesbeianus), Carbaryl and the predator alarm call, and a control with no stressor. In addition to metabolomic fingerprinting, we measured corticosterone levels in each treatment to assess general stress response. We analyzed relative abundances of endogenous metabolites collected in liver tissue with gas chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry. Support vector machine (SVM) methods with recursive feature elimination (RFE) were applied to rank the metabolomic profiles produced. Results/Conclusions SVM-RFE of the acquired metabolomic spectra demonstrated 85-96% classification accuracy among control and all treatment groups when using the top 75 ranked retention time bins. Biochemical fluxes observed in the groups exposed to carbaryl, predation threat, and the combined treatmen

  13. Comparison of amphibian and mammalian thyroperoxidase ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Thyroperoxidase (TPO) catalyzes the production of thyroid hormones in the vertebrate thyroid gland by oxidizing iodide (I- ) to produce iodinated tyrosines on thyroglobulin, and further coupling of specific mono- or di-iodinated tyrosines to generate the triiodo- and tetra-iodothyronine, precursors to thyroid hormone. This enzyme is a target for thyroid disrupting chemicals. TPO-inhibition by xenobiotics is a molecular initiating event that is known to perturb the thyroid axis by preventing synthesis of thyroid hormone. Previous work on TPO-inhibition has been focused on mammalian TPO; specifically, the rat and pig. A primary objective of this experiment was to directly measure TPO activity in a non-mammalian system, in this case a thyroid gland homogenate from Xenopus laevis; as well as compare chemical inhibition from past mammalian studies to the amphibian data generated. Thyroid glands obtained from X. laevis tadpoles at NF stages 58-60, were pooled and homogenized by sonication in phosphate buffer. This homogenate was then used to test 24 chemicals for inhibition of TPO as measured by conversion of Amplex UltraRed (AUR) substrate to its fluorescent product. The test chemicals were selected based upon previous results from rat in vitro TPO assays, and X. laevis in vitro and in vivo studies for thyroid disrupting endpoints, and included both positive and negative chemicals in these assays. An initial screening of the chemicals was done at a single high con

  14. Energy and water in aestivating amphibians.

    PubMed

    Carvalho, José E; Navas, Carlos A; Pereira, Isabel C

    2010-01-01

    The physiological mechanisms, behavioral adjustments, and ecological associations that allow animal species to live in extreme environments have evoked the attention of many zoologists. Often, extreme environments are defined as those believed to be limiting to life in terms of water, energetic availability, and temperature. These three elements seem extreme in a number of arid and semi-arid settings that even so have been colonized by amphibians. Because this taxon is usually seen as the quintessential water-dependent ectotherm tetrapods, their presence in a number of semi-arid environments poses a number of intriguing questions regarding microhabitat choice and physiological plasticity, particularly regarding the ecological and physiological correlates of behaviors granting avoidance of the harshest conditions of semi-arid environments. Such avoidance states, generally associated to the concept of aestivation, are currently seen as a diverse and complex phenomena varying from species to species and involving numerous behavioral and metabolic adjustments that enhance survival during the drought. This chapter reviews the physiological ecology of anuran aestivation, mainly from the perspective of water and energy balance.

  15. Whole-Mount Skeletal Staining

    PubMed Central

    Rigueur, Diana; Lyons, Karen M.

    2017-01-01

    The first step in almost every investigation of skeletal phenotypes is analysis of whole-mount skeletal preparations. Whole-mount skeletal staining permits evaluation of the shapes and sizes of skeletal elements in their appropriate locations. The technique is thus the major method for detecting changes in skeletal patterning. Because cartilage and bone can be distinguished by differential staining, this technique is also a powerful means to assess the pace of skeletal maturation. This protocol covers staining of the pre- and postnatal mouse skeleton using Alcian blue and Alizarin red to identify cartilage and bone, respectively. PMID:24482169

  16. Small Particles Intact Capture Experiment (SPICE)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nishioka, Ken-Ji; Carle, G. C.; Bunch, T. E.; Mendez, David J.; Ryder, J. T.

    1994-01-01

    The Small Particles Intact Capture Experiment (SPICE) will develop technologies and engineering techniques necessary to capture nearly intact, uncontaminated cosmic and interplanetary dust particles (IDP's). Successful capture of such particles will benefit the exobiology and planetary science communities by providing particulate samples that may have survived unaltered since the formation of the solar system. Characterization of these particles may contribute fundamental data to our knowledge of how these particles could have formed into our planet Earth and, perhaps, contributed to the beginnings of life. The term 'uncontaminated' means that captured cosmic and IDP particles are free of organic contamination from the capture process and the term 'nearly intact capture' means that their chemical and elemental components are not materially altered during capture. The key to capturing cosmic and IDP particles that are organic-contamination free and nearly intact is the capture medium. Initial screening of capture media included organic foams, multiple thin foil layers, and aerogel (a silica gel); but, with the exception of aerogel, the requirements of no contamination or nearly intact capture were not met. To ensure no contamination of particles in the capture process, high-purity aerogel was chosen. High-purity aerogel results in high clarity (visual clearness), a useful quality in detection and recovery of embedded captured particles from the aerogel. P. Tsou at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) originally described the use of aerogel for this purpose and reported laboratory test results. He has flown aerogel as a 'GAS-can Lid' payload on STS-47 and is evaluating the results. The Timeband Capture Cell Experiment (TICCE), a Eureca 1 experiment, is also flying aerogel and is scheduled for recovery in late April.

  17. Small Particles Intact Capture Experiment (SPICE)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nishioka, Ken-Ji; Carle, G. C.; Bunch, T. E.; Mendez, David J.; Ryder, J. T.

    1994-01-01

    The Small Particles Intact Capture Experiment (SPICE) will develop technologies and engineering techniques necessary to capture nearly intact, uncontaminated cosmic and interplanetary dust particles (IDP's). Successful capture of such particles will benefit the exobiology and planetary science communities by providing particulate samples that may have survived unaltered since the formation of the solar system. Characterization of these particles may contribute fundamental data to our knowledge of how these particles could have formed into our planet Earth and, perhaps, contributed to the beginnings of life. The term 'uncontaminated' means that captured cosmic and IDP particles are free of organic contamination from the capture process and the term 'nearly intact capture' means that their chemical and elemental components are not materially altered during capture. The key to capturing cosmic and IDP particles that are organic-contamination free and nearly intact is the capture medium. Initial screening of capture media included organic foams, multiple thin foil layers, and aerogel (a silica gel); but, with the exception of aerogel, the requirements of no contamination or nearly intact capture were not met. To ensure no contamination of particles in the capture process, high-purity aerogel was chosen. High-purity aerogel results in high clarity (visual clearness), a useful quality in detection and recovery of embedded captured particles from the aerogel. P. Tsou at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) originally described the use of aerogel for this purpose and reported laboratory test results. He has flown aerogel as a 'GAS-can Lid' payload on STS-47 and is evaluating the results. The Timeband Capture Cell Experiment (TICCE), a Eureca 1 experiment, is also flying aerogel and is scheduled for recovery in late April.

  18. Characterisation and vascular expression of nitric oxide synthase 3 in amphibians.

    PubMed

    Cameron, Melissa S; Trajanovska, Sofie; Forgan, Leonard G; Donald, John A

    2016-12-01

    In mammals, nitric oxide (NO) produced by nitric oxide synthase 3 (NOS3) localised in vascular endothelial cells is an important vasodilator but the presence of NOS3 in the endothelium of amphibians has been concluded to be absent, based on physiological studies. In this study, a nos3 cDNA was sequenced from the toad, Rhinella marina. The open reading frame of R. marina nos3 encoded an 1170 amino acid protein that showed 81 % sequence identity to the recently cloned Xenopus tropicalis nos3. Rhinella marina nos3 mRNA was expressed in a range of tissues and in the dorsal aorta and pulmonary, mesenteric, iliac and gastrocnemius arteries. Furthermore, nos3 mRNA was expressed in the aorta of Xenopus laevis and X. tropicalis. Quantitative real-time PCR showed that removal of the endothelium of the lateral aorta of R. marina significantly reduced the expression of nos3 mRNA compared to control aorta with the endothelium intact. However, in situ hybridisation was not able to detect any nos3 mRNA in the dorsal aorta of R. marina. Immunohistochemistry using a homologous R. marina NOS3 antibody showed immunoreactivity (IR) within the basal region of many endothelial cells of the dorsal aorta and iliac artery. NOS3-IR was also observed in the proximal tubules and collecting ducts of the kidney but not within the capillaries of the glomeruli. This is the first study to demonstrate that vascular endothelial cells of an amphibian express NOS3.

  19. Skeletal Dysplasias: An Overview.

    PubMed

    Offiah, Amaka C

    2015-01-01

    Constitutional disorders of bone, commonly termed skeletal dysplasias (SDs), are inherited disorders of cartilage and/or bone that affect their growth, morphometry and integrity. Associated skeletal abnormalities are usually but not invariably symmetrical. They may be classified as osteochondrodysplasias, which are conditions associated with abnormalities of the growth (dysplasias) or texture (osteodystrophy) of bone and/or cartilage, or dysostoses, which are conditions secondary to abnormal blastogenesis (occurring at or around the 6th week of in utero life). Skeletal involvement may also occur in other multisystem hereditary and acquired syndromes. The 2010 Nosology and Classification of Genetic Skeletal Disorders listed 456 conditions, of which approximately 50 are perinatally lethal, and 316 are associated with one or more of 226 genes. When an SD is suspected, a standard series of radiographs, collectively known as a skeletal survey, should be performed. The diagnosis of individual conditions is highly dependent on radiographic pattern recognition, which is achieved through a systematic review of the images and enhanced by discussion with colleagues and through the use of available tools, such as atlases and digital databases. This article summarises a systematic approach to the diagnosis of SDs, demonstrated using examples of some of the more common lethal and non-lethal conditions. © 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  20. A review of the role of contaminants in amphibian declines

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sparling, D.W.; Hoffman, David J.; Rattner, Barnett A.; Burton, G. Allen; Cairns, John=

    2003-01-01

    CONCLUSIONS--Although there are no published studies that demonstrate beyond all doubt that contaminants are involved in long term population declines of amphibians, there is ample evidence and reason to encourage active research and concern about effects. Many contaminants are lethal to amphibians at environmentally realistic concentrations. Acute mortality from these compounds may be difficult to detect because investigators would have to be present shortly after exposures. Chronic mortality may be masked by metapopulation phenomena so that areas that serve as population sinks may be repeatedly recolonized and difficult to identify. Metapopulation dynamics also make it more difficult to define discrete populations. Contaminants also have many sublethal effects on behavior, energetics, malformations, and diverse effects on physiological pathways which, by themselves might not lead to overt death but could alter reproduction or interact with other factors to result in gradual declines in populations. Scientific understanding of these interactions, and of the ecotoxicology of amphibians in general is far behind what is known about birds, fish, and mammals, and research is desperately needed in this area. Some specific suggestions for critically needed research include: (1) Determination of lethal concentrations of common contaminants - pesticides, PAHs, metals--under environmentally realistic conditions of light, temperature, and water chemistry. (2) Better understanding of the effects of long term (weeks, months), low- concentration exposure of persistent pesticides and stable contaminants on amphibians. (3) Development and refinement of bioindicators in amphibians to use in monitoring and screening for potential effects of contaminants in declining amphibian populations. (4) Further studies on the interaction between contaminants and disease agents including immunosuppression in amphibians. (5) Additional research on the interaction between ultraviolet radiation

  1. Amphibian populations in the terrestrial environment: Is there evidence of declines of terrestrial forest amphibians in northwestern California?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Welsh, H.H.; Fellers, G.M.; Lind, A.J.

    2007-01-01

    Amphibian declines have been documented worldwide; however the vast majority are species associated with aquatic habitats. Information on the status and trends of terrestrial amphibians is almost entirely lacking. Here we use data collected across a 12-yr period (sampling from 1984-86 and from 1993-95) to address the question of whether evidence exists for declines among terrestrial amphibians in northwestern California forests. The majority of amphibians, both species and relative numbers, in these forests are direct-developing salamanders of the family Plethodontidae. We examined amphibian richness and evenness, and the relative abundances of the four most common species of plethodontid salamanders. We examined evidence of differences between years in two ecological provinces (coastal and interior) and across young, mature, and late seral forests and with reference to a moisture gradient from xeric to hydric within late seral forests. We found evidence of declines in species richness across years on late seral mesic stands and in the coastal ecological province, but these differences appeared to be caused by differences in the detection of rarer species, rather than evidence of an overall pattern. We also found differences among specific years in numbers of individuals of the most abundant species, Ensatina eschscholtzii, but these differences also failed to reflect a consistent pattern of declines between the two decadal sample periods. Results showing differences in richness, evenness, and relative abundances along both the seral and moisture continua were consistent with previous research. Overall, we found no compelling evidence of a downward trend in terrestrial plethodontid salamanders. We believe that continued monitoring of terrestrial salamander populations is important to understanding mechanisms of population declines in amphibian species. Copyright 2007 Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles.

  2. Neuroendocrine control of spawning in amphibians and its practical applications.

    PubMed

    Vu, Maria; Trudeau, Vance L

    2016-08-01

    Across vertebrates, ovulation and sperm release are primarily triggered by the timed surge of luteinizing hormone (LH). These key reproductive events are governed by the action of several brain neuropeptides, pituitary hormones and gonadal steroids which operate to synchronize physiology with behaviour. In amphibians, it has long been recognized that the neuropeptide gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) has stimulatory effects to induce spawning. Extensive work in teleosts reveals an inhibitory role of dopamine in the GnRH-regulated release of LH. Preliminary evidence suggests that this may be a conserved function in amphibians. Emerging studies are proposing a growing list of modulators beyond GnRH that are involved in the control of spawning including prolactin, kisspeptins, pituitary adenylate cyclase-activating polypeptide, gonadotropin-inhibitory hormone and endocannabinoids. Based on these physiological data, spawning induction methods have been developed to test on selective amphibian species. However, several limitations remain to be investigated to strengthen the evidence for future applications. The current state of knowledge regarding the neuroendocrine control of spawning in amphibians will be reviewed in detail, the elements of which will have wide implications towards the captive breeding of endangered amphibian species for conservation. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Control of respiration in fish, amphibians and reptiles.

    PubMed

    Taylor, E W; Leite, C A C; McKenzie, D J; Wang, T

    2010-05-01

    Fish and amphibians utilise a suction/force pump to ventilate gills or lungs, with the respiratory muscles innervated by cranial nerves, while reptiles have a thoracic, aspiratory pump innervated by spinal nerves. However, fish can recruit a hypobranchial pump for active jaw occlusion during hypoxia, using feeding muscles innervated by anterior spinal nerves. This same pump is used to ventilate the air-breathing organ in air-breathing fishes. Some reptiles retain a buccal force pump for use during hypoxia or exercise. All vertebrates have respiratory rhythm generators (RRG) located in the brainstem. In cyclostomes and possibly jawed fishes, this may comprise elements of the trigeminal nucleus, though in the latter group RRG neurons have been located in the reticular formation. In air-breathing fishes and amphibians, there may be separate RRG for gill and lung ventilation. There is some evidence for multiple RRG in reptiles. Both amphibians and reptiles show episodic breathing patterns that may be centrally generated, though they do respond to changes in oxygen supply. Fish and larval amphibians have chemoreceptors sensitive to oxygen partial pressure located on the gills. Hypoxia induces increased ventilation and a reflex bradycardia and may trigger aquatic surface respiration or air-breathing, though these latter activities also respond to behavioural cues. Adult amphibians and reptiles have peripheral chemoreceptors located on the carotid arteries and central chemoreceptors sensitive to blood carbon dioxide levels. Lung perfusion may be regulated by cardiac shunting and lung ventilation stimulates lung stretch receptors.

  4. A multilocus timescale for the origin of extant amphibians.

    PubMed

    San Mauro, Diego

    2010-08-01

    One of the most hotly debated topics in vertebrate evolution is the origin of extant amphibians (Lissamphibia). The recent contribution of molecular data is shedding new light on this debate, but many important questions still remain unresolved. I have assembled a large and comprehensive multilocus dataset (the largest to date in terms of number and heterogeneity of sequence characters) combining mitogenomic and nuclear information from 23 genes for a sufficiently dense taxon sampling with the key major lineages of extant amphibians. This dataset has been used to infer a robust phylogenetic framework and molecular timescale for the origin of extant amphibians employing the most recent phylogenetic and dating methods, as well as several alternative calibration schemes. The monophyly of each extant amphibian order and the sister group relationship between frogs and salamanders (Batrachia hypothesis) are all strongly supported. Dating analyses (all methods and calibration schemes used) suggest that the origin of extant amphibians (divergence between caecilian and batrachians) occurred in the Late Carboniferous, around 315 Mya, and the divergence between frogs and salamanders occurred in the Early Permian, around 290 Mya. These age estimates are more consistent with the fossil record than previous older estimates, and more in line with the Temnospondyli or the Lepospondyli hypotheses of lissamphibian ancestry (although the polyphyly hypothesis cannot be completely ruled out). Copyright 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Annual Report: 2014: Partners in Amphibian and Reptile Conservation (PARC)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Weir, Linda A.; Nanjappa, P.; Apodaca, J. J.; Williams, J.

    2015-01-01

    Partners in Amphibian and Reptile Conservation (PARC) was established in 1999 to address the widespread declines, extinctions, and range reductions of amphibians and reptiles, with a focus on conservation of taxa and habitats in North America. Amphibians and reptiles are affected by a broad range of human activities, both as incidental effects of habitat alteration and direct effects from overexploitation; these animals are also burdened by humans attitudes – that amphibians and reptiles are either dangerous or of little environmental or economic value. However, PARC members understand these taxa are important parts of our natural and cultural heritage and they serve important roles in ecosystems throughout the world. With many amphibians and reptiles classified as threatened with extinction, conservation to ensure healthy populations of these animals has never been more important. As you will see herein, PARC’s 15th anniversary has been marked with major accomplishments and an ever-increasing momentum. With your help, PARC can continue to build on its successes and protect these vital species.

  6. The cause of global amphibian declines: a developmental endocrinologist's perspective

    PubMed Central

    Hayes, T. B.; Falso, P.; Gallipeau, S.; Stice, M.

    2010-01-01

    Greater than 70% of the world's amphibian species are in decline. We propose that there is probably not a single cause for global amphibian declines and present a three-tiered hierarchical approach that addresses interactions among and between ultimate and proximate factors that contribute to amphibian declines. There are two immediate (proximate) causes of amphibian declines: death and decreased recruitment (reproductive failure). Although much attention has focused on death, few studies have addressed factors that contribute to declines as a result of failed recruitment. Further, a great deal of attention has focused on the role of pathogens in inducing diseases that cause death, but we suggest that pathogen success is profoundly affected by four other ultimate factors: atmospheric change, environmental pollutants, habitat modification and invasive species. Environmental pollutants arise as likely important factors in amphibian declines because they have realized potential to affect recruitment. Further, many studies have documented immunosuppressive effects of pesticides, suggesting a role for environmental contaminants in increased pathogen virulence and disease rates. Increased attention to recruitment and ultimate factors that interact with pathogens is important in addressing this global crisis. PMID:20190117

  7. The cause of global amphibian declines: a developmental endocrinologist's perspective.

    PubMed

    Hayes, T B; Falso, P; Gallipeau, S; Stice, M

    2010-03-15

    Greater than 70% of the world's amphibian species are in decline. We propose that there is probably not a single cause for global amphibian declines and present a three-tiered hierarchical approach that addresses interactions among and between ultimate and proximate factors that contribute to amphibian declines. There are two immediate (proximate) causes of amphibian declines: death and decreased recruitment (reproductive failure). Although much attention has focused on death, few studies have addressed factors that contribute to declines as a result of failed recruitment. Further, a great deal of attention has focused on the role of pathogens in inducing diseases that cause death, but we suggest that pathogen success is profoundly affected by four other ultimate factors: atmospheric change, environmental pollutants, habitat modification and invasive species. Environmental pollutants arise as likely important factors in amphibian declines because they have realized potential to affect recruitment. Further, many studies have documented immunosuppressive effects of pesticides, suggesting a role for environmental contaminants in increased pathogen virulence and disease rates. Increased attention to recruitment and ultimate factors that interact with pathogens is important in addressing this global crisis.

  8. Estimating terrestrial amphibian pesticide body burden through dermal exposure.

    PubMed

    Van Meter, Robin J; Glinski, Donna A; Hong, Tao; Cyterski, Mike; Henderson, W Matthew; Purucker, S Thomas

    2014-10-01

    Dermal exposure presents a potentially significant but understudied route for pesticide uptake in terrestrial amphibians. Our study measured dermal uptake of pesticides of varying hydrophobicity (logKow) in frogs. Amphibians were indirectly exposed to one of five pesticide active ingredients through contact with contaminated soil: imidacloprid (logKow = 0.57), atrazine (logKow = 2.5), triadimefon (logKow = 3.0), fipronil (logKow = 4.11) or pendimethalin (logKow = 5.18). All amphibians had measurable body burdens at the end of the exposure in concentrations ranging from 0.019 to 14.562 μg/g across the pesticides tested. Atrazine produced the greatest body burdens and bioconcentration factors, but fipronil was more permeable to amphibian skin when application rate was considered. Soil partition coefficient and water solubility were much better predictors of pesticide body burden, bioconcentration factor, and skin permeability than logKow. Dermal uptake data can be used to improve risk estimates of pesticide exposure among amphibians as non-target organisms.

  9. Role of Antimicrobial Peptides in Amphibian Defense Against Trematode Infection

    PubMed Central

    Calhoun, Dana M.; Woodhams, Doug; Howard, Cierra; LaFonte, Bryan E.; Gregory, Jacklyn R.; Johnson, Pieter T. J.

    2016-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) contribute to the immune defenses of many vertebrates, including amphibians. As larvae, amphibians are often exposed to the infectious stages of trematode parasites, many of which must penetrate the host’s skin, potentially interacting with host AMPs. We tested the effects of the natural AMPs repertoires on both the survival of trematode infectious stages as well as their ability to infect larval amphibians. All five trematode species exhibited decreased survival of cercariae in response to higher concentrations of adult bullfrog AMPs, but no effect when exposed to AMPs from larval bullfrogs. Similarly, the use of norepinephrine to remove AMPs from larval bullfrogs, Pacific chorus frogs, and gray treefrogs had only weak (gray treefrogs) or non-significant (other tested species) effects on infection success by Ribeiroia ondatrae. We nonetheless observed strong differences in parasite infection as a function of both host stage (first- versus second-year bullfrogs) and host species (Pacific chorus frogs versus gray treefrogs) that were apparently unrelated to AMPs. Taken together, our results suggest that AMPs do not play a significant role in defending larval amphibians against trematode cercariae, but that they could be one mechanism helping to prevent infection of post-metamorphic amphibians, particularly for highly aquatic species. PMID:26911920

  10. Frog virus 3-like infections in aquatic amphibian communities.

    PubMed

    Duffus, A L J; Pauli, B D; Wozney, K; Brunetti, C R; Berrill, M

    2008-01-01

    Frog virus 3 (FV3) and FV3-like viruses, are members of the genus Ranavirus (family Iridoviridae), and they have been associated with infectious diseases that may be contributing to amphibian population declines. We examined the mode of transmission of an FV3-like virus, and potential hosts and reservoirs of the virus in a local amphibian community. Using the polymerase chain reaction to detect infected animals, we found an FV3-like virus in south-central Ontario, Canada, amphibian communities, where it infects sympatric amphibian species, including ranid and hylid tadpoles (Rana sylvatica, Hyla versicolor, and Pseudacris spp.), larval salamanders (Ambystoma spp.), and adult eastern-spotted newts (Notophthalmus viridescens). The high prevalence of FV3-like infections in caudate larvae suggests that salamanders are likely to be both hosts and reservoirs. In laboratory FV3 challenges of R. sylvatica, the rate of infection was dependent on the amount of virus to which the animals were exposed. In addition, although vertical transmission was suspected, horizontal transmission through exposure to infected pond water is the most likely route of infection in tadpoles. Based on our observations, a simple model of FV3/FV3-like virus transmission postulates that, in aquatic amphibian communities, transmission of the virus occurs between anuran and urodele species, with ambystomatid salamanders the most likely reservoir for the ranavirus in our study.

  11. Potential causes for amphibian declines in Puerto Rico

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Burrowes, P.A.; Joglar, R.L.; Green, David E.

    2004-01-01

    We monitored 11 populations of eight species of Eleutherodactylus in Puerto Rico from 1989 through 2001. We determined relative abundance of active frogs along transects established in the Caribbean National Forest (El Yunque), Carite Forest, San Lorenzo, and in the vicinity of San Juan. Three species (Eleutherodactylus karlschmidti, E. jasperi, and E. eneidae) are presumed to be extinct and eight populations of six different species of endemic Eleutherodactylus are significantly declining at elevations above 400 m. Of the many suspected causes of amphibian declines around the world, we focused on climate change and disease. Temperature and precipitation data from 1970a??2000 were analyzed to determine the general pattern of oscillations and deviations that could be correlated with amphibian declines. We examined a total of 106 tissues taken from museum specimens collected from 1961a??1978 and from live frogs in 2000. We found chytrid fungi in two species collected at El Yunque as early as 1976, this is the first report of chytrid fungus in the Caribbean. Analysis of weather data indicates a significant warming trend and an association between years with extended periods of drought and the decline of amphibians in Puerto Rico. The 1970's and 1990's, which represent the periods of amphibian extirpations and declines, were significantly drier than average. We suggest a possible synergistic interaction between drought and the pathological effect of the chytrid fungus on amphibian populations.

  12. Antimicrobial peptide defenses against pathogens associated with global amphibian declines.

    PubMed

    Rollins-Smith, Louise A; Doersam, Jennifer K; Longcore, Joyce E; Taylor, Sharon K; Shamblin, Jessica C; Carey, Cynthia; Zasloff, Michael A

    2002-01-01

    Global declines of amphibian populations are a source of great concern. Several pathogens that can infect the skin have been implicated in the declines. The pathogen most frequently associated with recent die-offs is a chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis. A second fungus, Basidiobolus ranarum, was isolated from declining populations of Wyoming toads. A third pathogen, Aeromonas hydrophila, is an opportunistic bacterium found in healthy frogs, but capable of inducing disease. Among the immune defense mechanisms used by amphibians is the production of antimicrobial peptides in granular glands in the skin. These packets of natural antibiotics can be emptied onto the skin when the amphibian is injured. To determine whether antimicrobial skin peptides defend against these amphibian pathogens, six peptides (magainin I, magainin II, PGLa, CPF, ranalexin, and dermaseptin), from three species, and representing three structurally different families of peptides, were tested in growth inhibition assays. We show here that the peptides can kill or inhibit growth of both fungi but not Aeromonas. Although each peptide varied in its effectiveness, at least one from each species was effective against both fungi at a concentration of about 10-20 microM. This is the first direct evidence that antimicrobial peptides in the skin can operate as a first line of defense against the organisms associated with global amphibian declines. It suggests that this innate defense mechanism may play a role in preventing or limiting infection by these organisms.

  13. Mitogenomic perspectives on the origin and phylogeny of living amphibians.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Peng; Zhou, Hui; Chen, Yue-Qin; Liu, Yi-Fei; Qu, Liang-Hu

    2005-06-01

    Establishing the relationships among modern amphibians (lissamphibians) and their ancient relatives is necessary for our understanding of early tetrapod evolution. However, the phylogeny is still intractable because of the highly specialized anatomy and poor fossil record of lissamphibians. Paleobiologists are still not sure whether lissamphibians are monophyletic or polyphyletic, and which ancient group (temnospondyls or lepospondyls) is most closely related to them. In an attempt to address these problems, eight mitochondrial genomes of living amphibians were determined and compared with previously published amphibian sequences. A comprehensive molecular phylogenetic analysis of nucleotide sequences yields a highly resolved tree congruent with the traditional hypotheses (Batrachia). By using a molecular clock-independent approach for inferring dating information from molecular phylogenies, we present here the first molecular timescale for lissamphibian evolution, which suggests that lissamphibians first emerged about 330 million years ago. By observing the fit between molecular and fossil times, we suggest that the temnospondyl-origin hypothesis for lissamphibians is more credible than other hypotheses. Moreover, under this timescale, the potential geographic origins of the main living amphibian groups are discussed: (i) advanced frogs (neobatrachians) may possess an Africa-India origin; (ii) salamanders may have originated in east Asia; (iii) the tropic forest of the Triassic Pangaea may be the place of origin for the ancient caecilians. An accurate phylogeny with divergence times can be also helpful to direct the search for "missing" fossils, and can benefit comparative studies of amphibian evolution.

  14. Investigating the Influence of Environmental Factors on Pesticide Exposure in Amphibians

    EPA Science Inventory

    Environmental factors such as temporal weather patterns and soil characterization coupled with pesticide application rates are known to influence exposure and subsequent absorption of these compounds in amphibians. Amphibians are a unique class of vertebrates due to their varied ...

  15. Advective and diffusive dermal processes for estimating terrestrial amphibian pesticide exposure

    EPA Science Inventory

    Background/Question/Methods Dermal exposure presents a potentially significant but understudied route for pesticide uptake in terrestrial amphibians. Historically, evaluation of pesticide risk to both amphibians and reptiles has been achieved by comparing ingestion and inhalat...

  16. Advective and diffusive dermal processes for estimating terrestrial amphibian pesticide exposure

    EPA Science Inventory

    Background/Question/Methods Dermal exposure presents a potentially significant but understudied route for pesticide uptake in terrestrial amphibians. Historically, evaluation of pesticide risk to both amphibians and reptiles has been achieved by comparing ingestion and inhalat...

  17. Investigating the Influence of Environmental Factors on Pesticide Exposure in Amphibians

    EPA Science Inventory

    Environmental factors such as temporal weather patterns and soil characterization coupled with pesticide application rates are known to influence exposure and subsequent absorption of these compounds in amphibians. Amphibians are a unique class of vertebrates due to their varied ...

  18. Isolation of Intact Mitochondria from Skeletal Muscle by Differential Centrifugation for High-resolution Respirometry Measurements.

    PubMed

    Djafarzadeh, Siamak; Jakob, Stephan Mathias

    2017-03-08

    Mitochondria are involved in cellular energy metabolism and use oxygen to produce energy in the form of adenosine triphosphate (ATP). Differential centrifugation at low- and high-speed is commonly used to isolate mitochondria from tissues and cultured cells. Crude mitochondrial fractions obtained by differential centrifugation are used for respirometry measurements. The differential centrifugation technique is based on the separation of organelles according to their size and sedimentation velocity. The isolation of mitochondria is performed immediately after tissue harvesting. The tissue is immersed in an ice-cold homogenization medium, minced using scissors and homogenized in a glass homogenizer with a loose-fitting pestle. The differential centrifugation technique is efficient, fast and inexpensive and the mitochondria obtained by differential centrifugation are pure enough for respirometry assays. Some of the limitations and disadvantages of isolated mitochondria, based on differential centrifugation, are that the mitochondria can be damaged during the homogenization and isolation procedure and that large amounts of the tissue biopsy or cultured cells are required for the mitochondrial isolation.

  19. The Relationship of Temperature to Strength and Power Production in Intact Human Skeletal Muscle.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1979-06-01

    Cote’ III I% I * jA Dissertation Submitted to the Faculty of the COMMITTEE ON ANIMAL PHYSIOLOGY (GRADUATE) In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements...increase of 10 C (Q1o = 2.0) ( Netter , 1969; Shapiro and Stoner, 1966). There are limits, however, to the extent to which temperature can be raised before...marked physiological ef- fects on living organisms. The nerve impulse travels faster and ionic permeabilities are increased with increases in

  20. Xenopus egg cytoplasm with intact actin.

    PubMed

    Field, Christine M; Nguyen, Phuong A; Ishihara, Keisuke; Groen, Aaron C; Mitchison, Timothy J

    2014-01-01

    We report optimized methods for preparing Xenopus egg extracts without cytochalasin D, that we term "actin-intact egg extract." These are undiluted egg cytoplasm that contains abundant organelles, and glycogen which supplies energy, and represents the least perturbed cell-free cytoplasm preparation we know of. We used this system to probe cell cycle regulation of actin and myosin-II dynamics (Field et al., 2011), and to reconstitute the large, interphase asters that organize early Xenopus embryos (Mitchison et al., 2012; Wühr, Tan, Parker, Detrich, & Mitchison, 2010). Actin-intact Xenopus egg extracts are useful for analysis of actin dynamics, and interaction of actin with other cytoplasmic systems, in a cell-free system that closely mimics egg physiology, and more generally for probing the biochemistry and biophysics of the egg, zygote, and early embryo. Detailed protocols are provided along with assays used to check cell cycle state and tips for handling and storing undiluted egg extracts.

  1. The invasive chytrid fungus of amphibians paralyzes lymphocyte responses.

    PubMed

    Fites, J Scott; Ramsey, Jeremy P; Holden, Whitney M; Collier, Sarah P; Sutherland, Danica M; Reinert, Laura K; Gayek, A Sophia; Dermody, Terence S; Aune, Thomas M; Oswald-Richter, Kyra; Rollins-Smith, Louise A

    2013-10-18

    The chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, causes chytridiomycosis and is a major contributor to global amphibian declines. Although amphibians have robust immune defenses, clearance of this pathogen is impaired. Because inhibition of host immunity is a common survival strategy of pathogenic fungi, we hypothesized that B. dendrobatidis evades clearance by inhibiting immune functions. We found that B. dendrobatidis cells and supernatants impaired lymphocyte proliferation and induced apoptosis; however, fungal recognition and phagocytosis by macrophages and neutrophils was not impaired. Fungal inhibitory factors were resistant to heat, acid, and protease. Their production was absent in zoospores and reduced by nikkomycin Z, suggesting that they may be components of the cell wall. Evasion of host immunity may explain why this pathogen has devastated amphibian populations worldwide.

  2. Competency of Reptiles and Amphibians for Eastern Equine Encephalitis Virus

    PubMed Central

    White, Gregory; Ottendorfer, Christy; Graham, Sean; Unnasch, Thomas R.

    2011-01-01

    Eastern equine encephalitis virus (EEEV) is endemic throughout most of the eastern United States. Although it is transmitted year round in Florida, transmission elsewhere is seasonal. The mechanism that enables EEEV to overwinter in seasonal foci remains obscure. In previous field studies, early season EEEV activity was detected in mosquito species that feed primarily upon ectothermic hosts, suggesting that reptiles and amphibians might represent overwintering reservoir hosts for EEEV. To determine if this might be possible, two commonly fed upon amphibian and reptile species were evaluated as hosts for the North American subtype I strain of EEEV. Neither amphibian species was a competent host. However, circulating viremias were detected in both reptile species examined. Hibernating infected garter snakes remained viremic after exiting hibernation. These data suggest that snakes may represent an overwintering host for North American EEEV. PMID:21896798

  3. Granular gland transcriptomes in stimulated amphibian skin secretions.

    PubMed

    Chen, Tianbao; Farragher, Susan; Bjourson, Anthony J; Orr, David F; Rao, Pingfan; Shaw, Chris

    2003-04-01

    Amphibian defensive skin secretions are complex, species-specific cocktails of biologically active molecules, including many uncharacterized peptides. The study of such secretions for novel peptide discovery is time-limited, as amphibians are in rapid global decline. While secretion proteome analysis is non-lethal, transcriptome analysis has until now required killing of specimens prior to skin dissection for cDNA library construction. Here we present the discovery that polyadenylated mRNAs encoding dermal granular gland peptides are present in defensive skin secretions, stabilized by endogenous nucleic acid-binding amphipathic peptides. Thus parallel secretory proteome and transcriptome analyses can be performed without killing the specimen in this model amphibian system--a finding that has important implications in conservation of biodiversity within this threatened vertebrate taxon and whose mechanistics may have broader implications in biomolecular science.

  4. Hormonal regulation of ion and water transport in anuran amphibians.

    PubMed

    Uchiyama, Minoru; Konno, Norifumi

    2006-05-15

    Amphibians occupy a wide variety of ecological habitats, and their adaptation is made possible through the specialization of the epithelia of their osmoregulatory organs, such as the skin, kidney, and urinary bladder, which control the hydromineral and acid-base balance of their internal medium. Amphibians can change drastically plasma Na+, Cl-, and urea levels and excretion rates in response to environmental stimuli such as acute desiccation and changes in external salinity. Several hormones and the autonomic nervous system act to control osmoregulation. Several ion channels including an epithelial sodium channel (ENaC), a urea transporter (UT), and water channels (AQPs) are found in epithelial tissues of their osmoregulatory organs. This mini review examines the currents status of our knowledge about hormone receptors for arginine vasotocin, angiotensin II and aldosterone, and membrane ion channels and transporters, such as ENaC, UT, and AQPs in amphibians.

  5. Granular gland transcriptomes in stimulated amphibian skin secretions.

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Tianbao; Farragher, Susan; Bjourson, Anthony J; Orr, David F; Rao, Pingfan; Shaw, Chris

    2003-01-01

    Amphibian defensive skin secretions are complex, species-specific cocktails of biologically active molecules, including many uncharacterized peptides. The study of such secretions for novel peptide discovery is time-limited, as amphibians are in rapid global decline. While secretion proteome analysis is non-lethal, transcriptome analysis has until now required killing of specimens prior to skin dissection for cDNA library construction. Here we present the discovery that polyadenylated mRNAs encoding dermal granular gland peptides are present in defensive skin secretions, stabilized by endogenous nucleic acid-binding amphipathic peptides. Thus parallel secretory proteome and transcriptome analyses can be performed without killing the specimen in this model amphibian system--a finding that has important implications in conservation of biodiversity within this threatened vertebrate taxon and whose mechanistics may have broader implications in biomolecular science. PMID:12413397

  6. Competency of reptiles and amphibians for eastern equine encephalitis virus.

    PubMed

    White, Gregory; Ottendorfer, Christy; Graham, Sean; Unnasch, Thomas R

    2011-09-01

    Eastern equine encephalitis virus (EEEV) is endemic throughout most of the eastern United States. Although it is transmitted year round in Florida, transmission elsewhere is seasonal. The mechanism that enables EEEV to overwinter in seasonal foci remains obscure. In previous field studies, early season EEEV activity was detected in mosquito species that feed primarily upon ectothermic hosts, suggesting that reptiles and amphibians might represent overwintering reservoir hosts for EEEV. To determine if this might be possible, two commonly fed upon amphibian and reptile species were evaluated as hosts for the North American subtype I strain of EEEV. Neither amphibian species was a competent host. However, circulating viremias were detected in both reptile species examined. Hibernating infected garter snakes remained viremic after exiting hibernation. These data suggest that snakes may represent an overwintering host for North American EEEV.

  7. Amphibian research and monitoring initiative: Concepts and implementation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Corn, P.S.; Adams, M.J.; Battaglin, W.A.; Gallant, A.L.; James, D.L.; Knutson, M.; Langtimm, C.A.; Sauer, J.R.

    2005-01-01

    This report provides the basis for discussion and subsequent articulation of a national plan for the Amphibian Research and Monitoring Initiative (ARMI). The authors were members of a task force formed from within the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) that included scientists with expertise in biology, cartography, hydrology, and statistics. The assignment of the task force was to extend work begun by the National Amphibian Leadership Group. This group, composed of senior USGS scientists, managers, and external authorities, met in Gainesville, Florida, in February 20001. The product of this meeting was a document outlining the framework for a national program to monitor amphibian populations and to conduct research into the causes of declines.

  8. Survey of Turkey's endemic amphibians for chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis.

    PubMed

    Erismis, Ugur Cengiz; Konuk, Muhsin; Yoldas, Taner; Agyar, Pinar; Yumuk, Dilay; Korcan, Safiye Elif

    2014-09-30

    We report a new survey for Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) in Turkey. We swabbed 228 individuals of 7 amphibian species (from 5 families) living in 2 locations (26-August National Park and the Turkish Lakes District) in the southwestern Anatolian region. The infection intensity of all the samples was determined using quantitative PCR. All 4 amphibian breeding sites and 4 amphibian species in 26-August National Park were infected by Bd, with the prevalence at each site ranging from 8 to 29%. Only 1 species was sampled from Beysehir Lake near the conservation area Beysehir Natural Park, but these samples were notable for their high detection rates (prevalence of 32.11%). This study reports the first records of Bd infecting wild Pelophylax ridibundus, Hyla orientalis, Pseudepidalea variabilis, and endemic Beysehir frogs Pelophylax caralitanus.

  9. Measuring and monitoring biological diversity: Standard methods for amphibians

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Heyer, W. Ronald; Donnelly, Maureen A.; McDiarmid, Roy W.; Hayek, Lee-Ann C.; Foster, Mercedes S.

    1994-01-01

    Measuring and Monitoring Biological Diversity is the first book to provide comprehensive coverage of standard methods for biodiversity sampling of amphibians, with information on analyzing and using data that will interest biologists in general.In this manual, nearly fifty herpetologists recommend ten standard sampling procedures for measuring and monitoring amphibian and many other populations. The contributors discuss each procedure, along with the circumstances for its appropriate use. In addition, they provide a detailed protocol for each procedure's implementation, a list of necessary equipment and personnel, and suggestions for analyzing the data.The data obtained using these standard methods are comparable across sites and through time and, as a result, are extremely useful for making decisions about habitat protection, sustained use, and restoration—decisions that are particularly relevant for threatened amphibian populations.

  10. The current status of amphibian and reptile ecotoxicological research

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sparling, D.W.; Bishop, C.A.; Linder, G.; Sparling, Donald W.; Linder, Greg L.; Bishop, Christine A.

    2000-01-01

    The extent of research conducted on the effects of contaminants on reptiles and amphibians has been scant compared to that of other vertebrate classes including fishes, birds and mammals. In a review of literature from 1972 until 1998 we found that only about 2.7% of the papers published on ecotoxicology in vertebrates concerned amphibians and 1.4% for reptiles. Most studies on amphibian ecotoxicology were on metals, pesticides, and acid deposition. For reptiles the greatest frequency of papers included metals, organochlorines, and others. In proportion to the taxonomic importance, far more papers were written on turtles than on other reptile orders. Most of the papers dealt with residues and very few dealt with effects of contaminant exposure.

  11. Spatial network structure and amphibian persistence in stochastic environments

    PubMed Central

    Fortuna, Miguel A; Gómez-Rodríguez, Carola; Bascompte, Jordi

    2006-01-01

    In the past few years, the framework of complex networks has provided new insight into the organization and function of biological systems. However, in spite of its potential, spatial ecology has not yet fully incorporated tools and concepts from network theory. In the present study, we identify a large spatial network of temporary ponds, which are used as breeding sites by several amphibian species. We investigate how the structural properties of the spatial network change as a function of the amphibian dispersal distance and the hydric conditions. Our measures of network topology suggest that the observed spatial structure of ponds is robust to drought (compared with similar random structures), allowing the movement of amphibians to and between flooded ponds, and hence, increasing the probability of reproduction even in dry seasons. PMID:16777733

  12. Qualitative risk analysis of introducing Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis to the UK through the importation of live amphibians.

    PubMed

    Peel, Alison J; Hartley, Matt; Cunningham, Andrew A

    2012-03-20

    The international amphibian trade is implicated in the emergence and spread of the amphibian fungal disease chytridiomycosis, which has resulted in amphibian declines and extinctions globally. The establishment of the causal pathogen, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), in the UK could negatively affect the survival of native amphibian populations. In recognition of the ongoing threat that it poses to amphibians, Bd was recently included in the World Organisation for Animal Health Aquatic Animal Health Code, and therefore is in the list of international notifiable diseases. Using standardised risk analysis guidelines, we investigated the likelihood that Bd would be introduced to and become established in wild amphibians in the UK through the importation of live amphibians. We obtained data on the volume and origin of the amphibian trade entering the UK and detected Bd infection in amphibians being imported for the pet and private collection trade and also in amphibians already held in captive pet, laboratory and zoological collections. We found that current systems for recording amphibian trade into the UK underestimate the volume of non-European Union trade by almost 10-fold. We identified high likelihoods of entry, establishment and spread of Bd in the UK and the resulting major overall impact. Despite uncertainties, we determined that the overall risk estimation for the introduction of Bd to the UK through the importation of live amphibians is high and that risk management measures are required, whilst ensuring that negative effects on legal trade are minimised.

  13. Efficacy of Three Funnel Traps for Capturing Amphibian Larvae in Seasonal Forest Ponds

    Treesearch

    Richard R. Buech; Leanna M. Egeland

    2002-01-01

    Among the many techniques that have been used to study amphibians, funnel traps are commonly recommended to determine species presence, breeding success, and relative abundance of amphibian larvae in aquatic habitats. Several authors have discussed the advantages and disadvantages of funnel traps for sampling amphibian larvae (Adams et al. 1997; Fronzuto and Verrell...

  14. Distribution and environmental limitations of an amphibian pathogen in the Rocky Mountains, USA

    Treesearch

    Erin Muths; David S. Pilliod; Lauren J. Livo

    2008-01-01

    Amphibian populations continue to be imperiled by the chytrid fungus (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis). Understanding where B. dendrobatidis (Bd) occurs and how it may be limited by environmental factors is critical to our ability to effectively conserve the amphibians affected by Bd. We sampled 1247 amphibians (boreal toads and...

  15. 76 FR 45603 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Comment Request for the North American Amphibian...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-07-29

    ... American Amphibian Monitoring Program (NAAMP) AGENCY: U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), Interior. ACTION... request (ICR) for the North American Amphibian Monitoring Program (NAAMP). As required by the Paperwork... the North American Amphibian Monitoring Program. Volunteers use an on-line data entry system to submit...

  16. 50 CFR 16.14 - Importation of live amphibians or their eggs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 1 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Importation of live amphibians or their... Importation of live amphibians or their eggs. Upon the filing of a written declaration with the District Director of Customs at the port of entry as required under § 14.61, all species of live amphibians or...

  17. 50 CFR 16.14 - Importation of live amphibians or their eggs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 1 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Importation of live amphibians or their... Importation of live amphibians or their eggs. Upon the filing of a written declaration with the District Director of Customs at the port of entry as required under § 14.61, all species of live amphibians or...

  18. 50 CFR 16.14 - Importation of live amphibians or their eggs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 1 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Importation of live amphibians or their... Importation of live amphibians or their eggs. Upon the filing of a written declaration with the District Director of Customs at the port of entry as required under § 14.61, all species of live amphibians or...

  19. 50 CFR 16.14 - Importation of live amphibians or their eggs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 1 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Importation of live amphibians or their... Importation of live amphibians or their eggs. Upon the filing of a written declaration with the District Director of Customs at the port of entry as required under § 14.61, all species of live amphibians or...

  20. 50 CFR 16.14 - Importation of live amphibians or their eggs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 1 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Importation of live amphibians or their... Importation of live amphibians or their eggs. Upon the filing of a written declaration with the District Director of Customs at the port of entry as required under § 14.61, all species of live amphibians or...

  1. Evidence of continued effects from timber harvesting on lotic amphibians in redwood forests of northwestern California

    Treesearch

    Donald T. Ashton; Sharyn B. Marks; Hartwell H. Welsh Jr.

    2006-01-01

    We compared species richness and relative abundance of stream-associated amphibians in late-seral redwood forests with those in mid-seral, second-growth forests to examine the continued (as opposed to immediate) effects of timber harvest on amphibian populations. Lacking pre-harvest data on amphibian abundances for streams in the second-growth stands, we assumed that...

  2. Does fire affect amphibians and reptiles in eastern U.S. oak forests?

    Treesearch

    Rochelle B. Renken

    2006-01-01

    Current information about the effect of fire on amphibians and reptiles in oak forests of the Eastern and Central United States is reviewed. Current data suggest that fire results in little direct mortality of amphibians and reptiles. Fire has no effect on overall amphibian abundance, diversity, and number of species in comparisons of burned and unburned plots, though...

  3. Assessing Changes in Amphibian Population Dynamics Following Experimental Manipulations of Introduced Fish

    Treesearch

    Karen L. Pope

    2008-01-01

    Sport-fish introductions are now recognized as an important cause of amphibian decline, but few researchers have quantified the demographic responses of amphibians to current options in fisheries management designed to minimize effects on sensitive amphibians. Demographic analyses with mark–recapture data allow researchers to assess the relative importance of...

  4. Non-native fish introductions and the reversibility of amphibian declines in the Sierra Nevada

    Treesearch

    Roland A. Knapp

    2004-01-01

    Amphibians are declining worldwide for a variety of reasons, including habitat alteration, introduction of non-native species, disease, climate change, and environmental contaminants. Amphibians often play important roles in structuring ecosystems, and, as a result, amphibian population declines or extinctions are likely to affect other trophic levels (Matthews and...

  5. Silica Aerogel Captures Cosmic Dust Intact

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tsou, P.

    1994-01-01

    The mesostructure of silica aerogel resembles stings of grapes, ranging in size from 10 to 100 angstrom. This fine mesostructure transmits nearly 90 percent of incident light in the visible, while providing sufficiently gentle dissipation of the kinetric energy of hypervelocity cosmic dust particles to permit their intact capture. We introduced silica aerogel in 1987 as capture medium to take advantage of its low density, fine mesostruicture and most importantly, its transparency, allowing optical location of captured micron sized particles.

  6. Silica Aerogel Captures Cosmic Dust Intact

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tsou, P.

    1994-01-01

    The mesostructure of silica aerogel resembles stings of grapes, ranging in size from 10 to 100 angstrom. This fine mesostructure transmits nearly 90 percent of incident light in the visible, while providing sufficiently gentle dissipation of the kinetric energy of hypervelocity cosmic dust particles to permit their intact capture. We introduced silica aerogel in 1987 as capture medium to take advantage of its low density, fine mesostruicture and most importantly, its transparency, allowing optical location of captured micron sized particles.

  7. Voltage clamp methods for the study of membrane currents and SR Ca2+ release in adult skeletal muscle fibres

    PubMed Central

    Hernández-Ochoa, Erick O.; Schneider, Martin F.

    2012-01-01

    Skeletal muscle excitation-contraction (E-C)1 coupling is a process composed of multiple sequential stages, by which an action potential triggers sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR)2 Ca2+ release and subsequent contractile activation. The various steps in the E-C coupling process in skeletal muscle can be studied using different techniques. The simultaneous recordings of sarcolemmal electrical signals and the accompanying elevation in myoplasmic Ca2+, due to depolarization-initiated SR Ca2+ release in skeletal muscle fibres, have been useful to obtain a better understanding of muscle function. In studying the origin and mechanism of voltage dependency of E-C coupling a variety of different techniques have been used to control the voltage in adult skeletal fibres. Pioneering work in muscles isolated from amphibians or crustaceans used microelectrodes or ‘high resistance gap’ techniques to manipulate the voltage in the muscle fibres. The development of the patch clamp technique and its variant, the whole-cell clamp configuration that facilitates the manipulation of the intracellular environment, allowed the use of the voltage clamp techniques in different cell types, including skeletal muscle fibres. The aim of this article is to present an historical perspective of the voltage clamp methods used to study skeletal muscle E-C coupling as well as to describe the current status of using the whole-cell patch clamp technique in studies in which the electrical and Ca2+ signalling properties of mouse skeletal muscle membranes are being investigated. PMID:22306655

  8. Amphibian interorder nuclear transfer embryos reveal conserved embryonic gene transcription, but deficient DNA replication or chromosome segregation.

    PubMed

    Narbonne, Patrick; Gurdon, John B

    2012-01-01

    Early interspecies nuclear transfer (iNT) experiments suggested that a foreign nucleus may become permanently damaged after a few rounds of cell division in the cytoplasm of another species. That is, in some distant species combinations, nucleocytoplasmic hybrid (cybrid) blastula nuclei can no longer support development, even if they are back-transferred into their own kind of egg cytoplasm. We monitored foreign DNA amplification and RNA production by quantitative PCR (qPCR) and RT-qPCR in interorder amphibian hybrids and cybrids formed by the transfer of newt (Pleurodeles waltl) embryonic nuclei into intact and enucleated frog (Xenopus laevis) eggs. We found a dramatic reduction in the expansion of foreign DNA and cell numbers in developing cybrid embryos that correlated with reduced gene transcription. Interestingly, expansion in cell numbers was rescued by the recipient species (Xenopus) maternal genome in iNT hybrids, but it did not improve P. waltl DNA expansion or gene transcription. Also, foreign gene transcripts, normalized to DNA copy numbers, were mostly normal in both iNT hybrids and cybrids. Thus, incomplete foreign DNA replication and/or chromosome segregation during cell division may be the major form of nuclear damage occurring as a result of nuclear replication in a foreign cytoplasmic environment. It also shows that the mechanisms of embryonic gene transcription are highly conserved across amphibians and may not be a major cause of cybrid lethality.

  9. The amphibian diversity of bukit jana, taiping, perak.

    PubMed

    Shahrudin, Shahriza; Jaafar, Ibrahim

    2012-12-01

    The study on the amphibian fauna of Bukit Jana, Taiping, Perak was carried out from January 2009 until December 2010 with a total of 12 nights of observation. Twenty four species of frogs from 14 genera and 6 families were recorded to inhabit the Bukit Jana areas. Seven commensal species were found around human habitations near the foothill whereas the others are typical forest frogs found mostly near the rivers, streams and forest floor. This is the first amphibian checklist of Bukit Jana, Perak and it contributed 22% out of 107 species of frogs that are recorded to inhabit Peninsular Malaysia.

  10. Effects of freshwater petroleum contamination on amphibian hatching and metamorphosis

    SciTech Connect

    Mahaney, P.A. . Dept. of Zoology)

    1994-02-01

    This study examined the effects of freshwater petroleum contamination on amphibian reproduction. The primary objectives were to assess the potential environmental and physiological impacts of runoff petroleum products on amphibians, using the green tree frog (Hyla cinerea) as a target species and engine crankcase oil as a contaminant. Egg hatching success, tadpole growth, and successful metamorphosis were measured in four concentrations of oil. The effects of oil on food source was also studied. Hatching success was not measurably influenced by the presence of oil. Tadpole and alga growth were negatively associated with the presence of oil. No tadpoles from the high concentration of oil treatments successfully metamorphosed.

  11. Forecasting changes in amphibian biodiversity: aiming at a moving target

    PubMed Central

    Collins, James P; Halliday, Tim

    2005-01-01

    Amphibian population declines and sudden species' extinctions began to be noted at the beginning of the 1980s. Understanding the causes of the losses is hampered by our poor knowledge of the amphibian fauna in many parts of the world. Amphibian taxa are still being described at a high rate, especially in the tropics, which means that even quantifying species lost as a percentage of the current fauna can be a misleading statistic in some parts of the globe. The number of species that have gone missing is only one measure of the loss of biodiversity. Long-term studies of single-species populations are needed, but this approach has its limits. Amphibian populations often show great annual variation in population size making it difficult, if not impossible, to use short-term studies as a basis for deciding if a population is increasing or decreasing in the long term. Aggregating single studies into databases and searching for patterns of variation is a way of overcoming this limitation. Several databases on species and population time series are available or in development. These records show that declines are continuing worldwide with some species and populations, especially in the tropics and at higher elevations, at greater risk of extinction than others. Unfortunately, amphibian databases with population time series have much less information for the tropics compared to the temperate zone, and less for Africa and Asia compared with Europe and North America. Focusing limited resources using comprehensive statistical designs is a way to maximize the efficiency and effectiveness of monitoring efforts. It is clear that, in the first decades of the twenty-first century, the regions of the globe with the highest diversity of amphibian species will experience the greatest rates of decrease of forests and increase in human population size, fertilizer use, agricultural production, creation of new croplands and irrigation. Many of these changes are likely negatively to

  12. Ticks infesting amphibians and reptiles in Pernambuco, Northeastern Brazil.

    PubMed

    Dantas-Torres, Filipe; Oliveira-Filho, Edmilson F; Soares, Fábio Angelo M; Souza, Bruno O F; Valença, Raul Baltazar P; Sá, Fabrício B

    2008-01-01

    Ticks infesting amphibians and reptiles in the State of Pernambuco are reviewed, based on the current literature and new collections recently carried out by the authors. To date, three tick species have been found on amphibians and reptiles in Pernambuco. Amblyomma fuscum appears to be exclusively associated with Boa constrictor, its type host. Amblyomma rotundatum has a relatively low host-specificity, being found on toads, snakes, and iguana. Amblyomma dissimile has been found on a lizard and also small mammals (i.e., rodents and marsupials). New tick-host associations and locality records are given.

  13. Forecasting changes in amphibian biodiversity: aiming at a moving target.

    PubMed

    Collins, James P; Halliday, Tim

    2005-02-28

    Amphibian population declines and sudden species' extinctions began to be noted at the beginning of the 1980s. Understanding the causes of the losses is hampered by our poor knowledge of the amphibian fauna in many parts of the world. Amphibian taxa are still being described at a high rate, especially in the tropics, which means that even quantifying species lost as a percentage of the current fauna can be a misleading statistic in some parts of the globe. The number of species that have gone missing is only one measure of the loss of biodiversity. Long-term studies of single-species populations are needed, but this approach has its limits. Amphibian populations often show great annual variation in population size making it difficult, if not impossible, to use short-term studies as a basis for deciding if a population is increasing or decreasing in the long term. Aggregating single studies into databases and searching for patterns of variation is a way of overcoming this limitation. Several databases on species and population time series are available or in development. These records show that declines are continuing worldwide with some species and populations, especially in the tropics and at higher elevations, at greater risk of extinction than others. Unfortunately, amphibian databases with population time series have much less information for the tropics compared to the temperate zone, and less for Africa and Asia compared with Europe and North America. Focusing limited resources using comprehensive statistical designs is a way to maximize the efficiency and effectiveness of monitoring efforts. It is clear that, in the first decades of the twenty-first century, the regions of the globe with the highest diversity of amphibian species will experience the greatest rates of decrease of forests and increase in human population size, fertilizer use, agricultural production, creation of new croplands and irrigation. Many of these changes are likely negatively to

  14. The Amphibian Research and Monitoring Initiative in the Pacific Northwest

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Adams, Michael J.

    2003-01-01

    Amphibians have been disappearing from many locations around the world with reports of declines increasing in recent decades. Some of the most dramatic declines have occurred in areas that were thought to be protected from human disturbance. For example, the once-common boreal toad has virtually disappeared from Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado. Although there has been debate on whether these declines represent a short-term fluctuation in populations or major sustained losses, there is now general scientific consensus that something really is amiss with amphibian populations.

  15. Amphibian decline: An integrated analysis of multiple stressor effects

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Linder, G.; Krest, S.K.; Sparling, D. W.; Linder, G.; Krest, S.K.; Sparling, D.W.

    2003-01-01

    Capturing the attention and imagination of the public and the scientific community alike, the mysterious decline in amphibian populations drew scientists and resource managers from ecotoxicology and chemistry, ecology and field biology, conservation biology, and natural resource policy to a SETAC–Johnson Foundation workshop. Facilitating environmental stewardship, increasing capacity of the sciences to explain complex stressors, and educating the public on relationships among communities of all types motivated these experts to address amphibian decline and the role of various stressors in these losses.

  16. Effect of substitution of troponin C in cardiac myofibrils with skeletal troponin C or calmodulin on the Ca2+- and Sr2+-sensitive ATPase activity.

    PubMed

    Morimoto, S; Ohtsuki, I

    1988-07-01

    Troponin C was removed almost completely from the porcine cardiac myofibrils by the same extraction procedure using CDTA as that previously reported for the rabbit skeletal myofibrils (Morimoto, S. & Ohtsuki, I. (1987) J. Biochem. 101, 291-301), and the effects of substitution of troponin C in cardiac myofibrils with rabbit skeletal troponin C or bovine brain calmodulin were examined. While the ATPase activity of intact cardiac myofibrils or cardiac troponin C-reconstituted cardiac myofibrils was activated at only a little higher concentration of Sr2+ than Ca2+, the skeletal troponin C-substituted cardiac myofibrils, as well as intact rabbit skeletal myofibrils, required more than 10 times higher concentration of Sr2+ than Ca2+ for activation of the myofibrillar ATPase activity. However, the concentrations of Ca2+ and Sr2+ required for the activation of the ATPase activity of the skeletal troponin C-substituted cardiac myofibrils were both about 5 times higher than those of intact skeletal myofibrils. The skeletal troponin C-substituted cardiac myofibrils, as well as intact skeletal myofibrils, also showed higher cooperativity in the Ca2+-activation of the ATPase activity than intact or cardiac troponin C-reconstituted cardiac myofibrils. The ATPase activity of calmodulin-substituted cardiac myofibrils was activated at a several times lower concentration of Ca2+ or Sr2+ than that of calmodulin-substituted skeletal myofibrils, while the ratios of the concentration of Sr2+ to Ca2+ required for activation were almost the same in both cases.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  17. [Regeneration capacity of skeletal muscle].

    PubMed

    Wernig, A

    2003-07-01

    while the other is free to divide. Divide how often? Important for the human cells since the cell ages and proliferates slower and slower till it stops to divide at all, at least in culture. The same is true for the new satellite cell. This we know from recent experiments in which human biopsies derived myogenic cells were grown in vitro and in vivo (by implanting them into skeletal muscles of immunoincompetent mice): Growth correlates negatively with age of the donor. Between age 2 and some 70 years, about two divisions are performed by each satellite cell in human vastus lateralis and biceps brachii muscle in 10 years in the average. Most important for the older among us: at age 76 there are still some 13 divisions left before complete exhaustion. However, there are diseases like Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) in which muscle fibers lack a structural protein with the effect of enhanced vulnerability to mechanical stress. There the enhanced use of the satellite cell pool makes the remaining growth capacity in an 8-years-old child as low as otherwise found at age 80. Some time ago, implantation of genetically intact myoblasts obtained from healthy relatives has been proposed as a treatment of DMD. Every logic would have predicted that some local implantation of whatever numbers of cells was bound to fail rescue the complete masculature or at least the muscles for breathing. The human as guinea pig? Now, even years later, we still collect the basic information on growth of human myoblasts and start thinking of ways for systemic application and quantitatively relevant incorporation of the myogenic stem cell or other--possibly pluripotent--stem cells derived from bone marrow.

  18. Gravity and Skeletal Growth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morey-Holton, Emily; Turner, Russell T.

    1999-01-01

    Two simultaneous experiments were performed using 5-week-old male Sprague Dawley rats; in one study, the rats were flown in low earth orbit; in the other study, the hindlimbs of the growing rats were elevated to prevent weight bearing. Following 9 d of unloading, weight bearing was restored for 4, 28, and 76 hrs. Afterwards, additional hindlimb unloading experiments were performed to evaluate the skeletal response to 0, 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 16, and 24 hrs of restored weight bearing following 7 d of unloading. Cancellous and cortical bone histomorphometry were evaluated in the left tibia at the proximal metaphysis and in the left femur at mid-diaphysis, respectively. Steady-state mRNA levels for bone matrix proteins and skeletal signaling peptides were determined in total cellular RNA extracted from trabeculae from the right proximal tibiametaphysis and periosteum from the right femur. Spaceflight and hindlimb unloading each resulted in cancellous osteopenia, as well as a tendency towards decreased periosteal bone formation. Both models for skeletal unloading resulted in site specific reductions in mRNA levels for transforming growth factor-beta (sub 1) (TGF-beta) osteocalcin (OC), and prepro-alpha (I) subunit of type 1 collagen (collagen) and little or no changes in mRNA levels for glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAP) and insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I). Restoration of normal weight bearing resulted in transient increases in mRNA levels for the bone matrix proteins and TGF-beta in the proximal metaphysis and periosteum and no changes in either GAP or IGF-I mRNA levels. The timecourse for the response differed between the two skeletal compartments; the tibial metaphysis responded much more quickly to reloading. These results suggest that the skeletal adaptation to acute physiological changes in mechanical usage are mediated, in part, by changes in mRNA levels for bone matrix proteins and TGF-beta.

  19. Estimating Herd Immunity to Amphibian Chytridiomycosis in Madagascar Based on the Defensive Function of Amphibian Skin Bacteria.

    PubMed

    Bletz, Molly C; Myers, Jillian; Woodhams, Douglas C; Rabemananjara, Falitiana C E; Rakotonirina, Angela; Weldon, Che; Edmonds, Devin; Vences, Miguel; Harris, Reid N

    2017-01-01

    For decades, Amphibians have been globally threatened by the still expanding infectious disease, chytridiomycosis. Madagascar is an amphibian biodiversity hotspot where Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) has only recently been detected. While no Bd-associated population declines have been reported, the risk of declines is high when invasive virulent lineages become involved. Cutaneous bacteria contribute to host innate immunity by providing defense against pathogens for numerous animals, including amphibians. Little is known, however, about the cutaneous bacterial residents of Malagasy amphibians and the functional capacity they have against Bd. We cultured 3179 skin bacterial isolates from over 90 frog species across Madagascar, identified them via Sanger sequencing of approximately 700 bp of the 16S rRNA gene, and characterized their functional capacity against Bd. A subset of isolates was also tested against multiple Bd genotypes. In addition, we applied the concept of herd immunity to estimate Bd-associated risk for amphibian communities across Madagascar based on bacterial antifungal activity. We found that multiple bacterial isolates (39% of all isolates) cultured from the skin of Malagasy frogs were able to inhibit Bd. Mean inhibition was weakly correlated with bacterial phylogeny, and certain taxonomic groups appear to have a high proportion of inhibitory isolates, such as the Enterobacteriaceae, Pseudomonadaceae, and Xanthamonadaceae (84, 80, and 75% respectively). Functional capacity of bacteria against Bd varied among Bd genotypes; however, there were some bacteria that showed broad spectrum inhibition against all tested Bd genotypes, suggesting that these bacteria would be good candidates for probiotic therapies. We estimated Bd-associated risk for sampled amphibian communities based on the concept of herd immunity. Multiple amphibian communities, including those in the amphibian diversity hotspots, Andasibe and Ranomafana, were estimated to be below

  20. Red List of amphibians and reptiles of the Wadden Sea area

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fog, K.; Podloucky, R.; Dierking, U.; Stumpel, A. H. P.

    1996-10-01

    In the Wadden Sea, in total, 8 species of amphibians and 4 species of reptiles are threatened in at least one subregion. Of these, 7 species of amphibians and all 4 species of reptiles are threatened in the entire area and are therefore placed on the trilateral Red List. 1 species of the listed reptiles is (probably) extinct in the entire Wadden Sea area. The status of 1 species of amphibians is endangered, the status of (probably) 4 species of amphibians and 3 species of reptiles are vulnerable and of 2 species of amphibians susceptible.

  1. Slow dynamics of the amphibian tympanic membrane

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bergevin, Christopher; Meenderink, Sebastiaan W. F.; van der Heijden, Marcel; Narins, Peter M.

    2015-12-01

    Several studies have demonstrated that delays associated with evoked otoacoustic emissions (OAEs) largely originate from filter delays of resonant elements in the inner ear. However, one vertebrate group is an exception: Anuran (frogs and toads) amphibian OAEs exhibit relatively long delays (several milliseconds), yet relatively broad tuning. These delays, also apparent in auditory nerve fiber (ANF) responses, have been partially attributed to the middle ear (ME), with a total forward delay of ˜0.7 ms (˜30 times longer than in gerbil). However, ME forward delays only partially account for the longer delays of OAEs and ANF responses. We used scanning laser Doppler vibrometery to map surface velocity over the tympanic membrane (TyM) of anesthetized bullfrogs (Rana catesbeiana). Our main finding is a circularly-symmetric wave on the TyM surface, starting at the outer edges of the TyM and propagating inward towards the center (the site of the ossicular attachment). This wave exists for frequencies ˜0.75-3 kHz, overlapping the range of bullfrog hearing (˜0.05-1.7 kHz). Group delays associated with this wave varied from 0.4 to 1.2 ms and correlated with with TyM diameter, which ranged from ˜6-16 mm. These delays correspond well to those from previous ME measurements. Presumably the TyM waves stem from biomechanical constraints of semi-aquatic species with a relatively large tympanum. We investigated some of these constraints by measuring the pressure ratio across the TyM (˜10-30 dB drop, delay of ˜0.35 ms), the effects of ossicular interruption, the changes due to physiological state of TyM (`dry-out'), and by calculating the middle-ear input impedance. In summary, we found a slow, inward-traveling wave on the TyM surface that accounts for a substantial fraction of the relatively long otoacoustic and neurophysiological delays previously observed in the anuran inner ear.

  2. Advances in Skeletal Dysplasia Genetics.

    PubMed

    Geister, Krista A; Camper, Sally A

    2015-01-01

    Skeletal dysplasias result from disruptions in normal skeletal growth and development and are a major contributor to severe short stature. They occur in approximately 1/5,000 births, and some are lethal. Since the most recent publication of the Nosology and Classification of Genetic Skeletal Disorders, genetic causes of 56 skeletal disorders have been uncovered. This remarkable rate of discovery is largely due to the expanded use of high-throughput genomic technologies. In this review, we discuss these recent discoveries and our understanding of the molecular mechanisms behind these skeletal dysplasia phenotypes. We also cover potential therapies, unusual genetic mechanisms, and novel skeletal syndromes both with and without known genetic causes. The acceleration of skeletal dysplasia genetics is truly spectacular, and these advances hold great promise for diagnostics, risk prediction, and therapeutic design.

  3. Advances in Skeletal Dysplasia Genetics

    PubMed Central

    Geister, Krista A.; Camper, Sally A.

    2017-01-01

    Skeletal dysplasias result from disruptions in normal skeletal growth and development and are a major contributor to severe short stature. They occur in approximately 1/5,000 births, and some are lethal. Since the most recent publication of the Nosology and Classification of Genetic Skeletal Disorders, genetic causes of 56 skeletal disorders have been uncovered. This remarkable rate of discovery is largely due to the expanded use of high-throughput genomic technologies. In this review, we discuss these recent discoveries and our understanding of the molecular mechanisms behind these skeletal dysplasia phenotypes. We also cover potential therapies, unusual genetic mechanisms, and novel skeletal syndromes both with and without known genetic causes. The acceleration of skeletal dysplasia genetics is truly spectacular, and these advances hold great promise for diagnostics, risk prediction, and therapeutic design. PMID:25939055

  4. Cranial muscles in amphibians: development, novelties and the role of cranial neural crest cells.

    PubMed

    Schmidt, Jennifer; Piekarski, Nadine; Olsson, Lennart

    2013-01-01

    Our research on the evolution of the vertebrate head focuses on understanding the developmental origins of morphological novelties. Using a broad comparative approach in amphibians, and comparisons with the well-studied quail-chicken system, we investigate how evolutionarily conserved or variable different aspects of head development are. Here we review research on the often overlooked development of cranial muscles, and on its dependence on cranial cartilage development. In general, cranial muscle cell migration and the spatiotemporal pattern of cranial muscle formation appears to be very conserved among the few species of vertebrates that have been studied. However, fate-mapping of somites in the Mexican axolotl revealed differences in the specific formation of hypobranchial muscles (tongue muscles) in comparison to the chicken. The proper development of cranial muscles has been shown to be strongly dependent on the mostly neural crest-derived cartilage elements in the larval head of amphibians. For example, a morpholino-based knock-down of the transcription factor FoxN3 in Xenopus laevis has drastic indirect effects on cranial muscle patterning, although the direct function of the gene is mostly connected to neural crest development. Furthermore, extirpation of single migratory streams of cranial neural crest cells in combination with fate-mapping in a frog shows that individual cranial muscles and their neural crest-derived connective tissue attachments originate from the same visceral arch, even when the muscles attach to skeletal components that are derived from a different arch. The same pattern has also been found in the chicken embryo, the only other species that has been thoroughly investigated, and thus might be a conserved pattern in vertebrates that reflects the fundamental nature of a mechanism that keeps the segmental order of the head in place despite drastic changes in adult anatomy. There is a need for detailed comparative fate-mapping of pre

  5. Cranial muscles in amphibians: development, novelties and the role of cranial neural crest cells

    PubMed Central

    Schmidt, Jennifer; Piekarski, Nadine; Olsson, Lennart

    2013-01-01

    Our research on the evolution of the vertebrate head focuses on understanding the developmental origins of morphological novelties. Using a broad comparative approach in amphibians, and comparisons with the well-studied quail-chicken system, we investigate how evolutionarily conserved or variable different aspects of head development are. Here we review research on the often overlooked development of cranial muscles, and on its dependence on cranial cartilage development. In general, cranial muscle cell migration and the spatiotemporal pattern of cranial muscle formation appears to be very conserved among the few species of vertebrates that have been studied. However, fate-mapping of somites in the Mexican axolotl revealed differences in the specific formation of hypobranchial muscles (tongue muscles) in comparison to the chicken. The proper development of cranial muscles has been shown to be strongly dependent on the mostly neural crest-derived cartilage elements in the larval head of amphibians. For example, a morpholino-based knock-down of the transcription factor FoxN3 in Xenopus laevis has drastic indirect effects on cranial muscle patterning, although the direct function of the gene is mostly connected to neural crest development. Furthermore, extirpation of single migratory streams of cranial neural crest cells in combination with fate-mapping in a frog shows that individual cranial muscles and their neural crest-derived connective tissue attachments originate from the same visceral arch, even when the muscles attach to skeletal components that are derived from a different arch. The same pattern has also been found in the chicken embryo, the only other species that has been thoroughly investigated, and thus might be a conserved pattern in vertebrates that reflects the fundamental nature of a mechanism that keeps the segmental order of the head in place despite drastic changes in adult anatomy. There is a need for detailed comparative fate-mapping of pre

  6. 50 CFR 622.493 - Landing Caribbean queen conch intact.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... conch intact. (a) A Caribbean queen conch in or from the Caribbean EEZ must be maintained with meat and shell intact. (b) The operator of a vessel that fishes in the EEZ is responsible for ensuring...

  7. 50 CFR 622.493 - Landing Caribbean queen conch intact.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... conch intact. (a) A Caribbean queen conch in or from the Caribbean EEZ must be maintained with meat and shell intact. (b) The operator of a vessel that fishes in the EEZ is responsible for ensuring...

  8. How can we conserve intact tropical peatlands?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lawson, Ian; Roucoux, Katherine

    2017-04-01

    The scientific community has, for more than three decades, been expressing increasing alarm about the fate of peatlands in parts of Indonesia and Malaysia, where extensive land-use conversion and drainage for rice and oil palm have greatly compromised peatland hydrology, ecology, biological richness, and carbon storage. The discourse in the literature on these peatlands is now moving on from attempts to preserve the last remaining fragments of peat-swamp forest, towards discussion of how best to restore damaged ecosystems, and whether it is possible to manage plantations more 'sustainably'. It is becoming increasingly clear, however, that peatlands occur quite widely in other parts of the lowland tropics, including parts of Amazonia and the Congo Basin, and many of these peatlands can reasonably be described as 'intact': although few if any parts of the tropics are totally unaffected by human actions, the hydrology and functional ecology of these systems appear to be close to a 'natural' state. The question then arises as to what should be done with the knowledge of their existence. Here we analyse the arguments in favour of protecting intact peatlands, and the potential conflicts with other priorities such as economic development and social justice. We evaluate alternative mechanisms for protecting intact peatlands, focusing on the particular issues raised by peatlands as opposed to other kinds of tropical ecosystem. We identify ways in which natural science agendas can help to inform these arguments, using our own contributions in palaeoecology and carbon mapping as examples. Finally, we argue for a radical reconsideration of research agendas in tropical peatlands, highlighting the potential contribution of methodologies borrowed from the social sciences and humanities.

  9. Calcium Signaling in Intact Dorsal Root Ganglia

    PubMed Central

    Gemes, Geza; Rigaud, Marcel; Koopmeiners, Andrew S.; Poroli, Mark J.; Zoga, Vasiliki; Hogan, Quinn H.

    2013-01-01

    Background Ca2+ is the dominant second messenger in primary sensory neurons. In addition, disrupted Ca2+ signaling is a prominent feature in pain models involving peripheral nerve injury. Standard cytoplasmic Ca2+ recording techniques use high K+ or field stimulation and dissociated neurons. To compare findings in intact dorsal root ganglia, we used a method of simultaneous electrophysiologic and microfluorimetric recording. Methods Dissociated neurons were loaded by bath-applied Fura-2-AM and subjected to field stimulation. Alternatively, we adapted a technique in which neuronal somata of intact ganglia were loaded with Fura-2 through an intracellular microelectrode that provided simultaneous membrane potential recording during activation by action potentials (APs) conducted from attached dorsal roots. Results Field stimulation at levels necessary to activate neurons generated bath pH changes through electrolysis and failed to predictably drive neurons with AP trains. In the intact ganglion technique, single APs produced measurable Ca2+ transients that were fourfold larger in presumed nociceptive C-type neurons than in nonnociceptive Aβ-type neurons. Unitary Ca2+ transients summated during AP trains, forming transients with amplitudes that were highly dependent on stimulation frequency. Each neuron was tuned to a preferred frequency at which transient amplitude was maximal. Transients predominantly exhibited monoexponential recovery and had sustained plateaus during recovery only with trains of more than 100 APs. Nerve injury decreased Ca2+ transients in C-type neurons, but increased transients in Aβ-type neurons. Conclusions Refined observation of Ca2+ signaling is possible through natural activation by conducted APs in undissociated sensory neurons and reveals features distinct to neuronal types and injury state. PMID:20526180

  10. Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis infection of amphibians in the Doñana National Park, Spain.

    PubMed

    Hidalgo-Vila, Judit; Díaz-Paniagua, Carmen; Marchand, Marc A; Cunningham, Andrew A

    2012-03-20

    Amphibian chytridiomycosis, caused by infection with the non-hyphal, zoosporic chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), is an emerging infectious disease recognised as a cause of recent amphibian population declines and extinctions worldwide. The Doñana National Park (DNP) is located in southwestern Spain, a country with widespread Bd infection. This protected area has a great diversity of aquatic habitats that constitute important breeding habitats for 11 native amphibian species. We sampled 625 amphibians in December 2007 and February to March 2008, months that correspond to the early and intermediate breeding seasons for amphibians, respectively. We found 7 of 9 sampled species to be infected with Bd and found differences in prevalence between sampling periods. Although some amphibians tested had higher intensities of infection than others, all animals sampled were apparently healthy and, so far, there has been no evidence of either unusually high rates of mortality or amphibian population declines in the DNP.

  11. Evolution of cranial development and the role of neural crest: insights from amphibians

    PubMed Central

    Hanken, James; Gross, Joshua B

    2005-01-01

    Contemporary studies of vertebrate cranial development document the essential role played by the embryonic neural crest as both a source of adult tissues and a locus of cranial form and patterning. Yet corresponding and basic features of cranial evolution, such as the extent of conservation vs. variation among species in the contribution of the neural crest to specific structures, remain to be adequately resolved. Investigation of these features requires comparable data from species that are both phylogenetically appropriate and taxonomically diverse. One key group are amphibians, which are uniquely able to inform our understanding of the ancestral patterns of ontogeny in fishes and tetrapods as well as the evolution of presumably derived patterns reported for amniotes. Recent data support the hypothesis that a prominent contribution of the neural crest to cranial skeletal and muscular connective tissues is a fundamental property that evolved early in vertebrate history and is retained in living forms. The contribution of the neural crest to skull bones appears to be more evolutionarily labile than that of cartilages, although significance of the limited comparative data is difficult to establish at present. Results underline the importance of accurate and reliable homology assessments for evaluating the contrasting patterns of derivation reported for the three principal tetrapod models: mouse, chicken and frog. PMID:16313386

  12. Evolution of cranial development and the role of neural crest: insights from amphibians.

    PubMed

    Hanken, James; Gross, Joshua B

    2005-11-01

    Contemporary studies of vertebrate cranial development document the essential role played by the embryonic neural crest as both a source of adult tissues and a locus of cranial form and patterning. Yet corresponding and basic features of cranial evolution, such as the extent of conservation vs. variation among species in the contribution of the neural crest to specific structures, remain to be adequately resolved. Investigation of these features requires comparable data from species that are both phylogenetically appropriate and taxonomically diverse. One key group are amphibians, which are uniquely able to inform our understanding of the ancestral patterns of ontogeny in fishes and tetrapods as well as the evolution of presumably derived patterns reported for amniotes. Recent data support the hypothesis that a prominent contribution of the neural crest to cranial skeletal and muscular connective tissues is a fundamental property that evolved early in vertebrate history and is retained in living forms. The contribution of the neural crest to skull bones appears to be more evolutionarily labile than that of cartilages, although significance of the limited comparative data is difficult to establish at present. Results underline the importance of accurate and reliable homology assessments for evaluating the contrasting patterns of derivation reported for the three principal tetrapod models: mouse, chicken and frog.

  13. Sodium Absorption by Intact Sugar Beet Plants

    PubMed Central

    El-Sheikh, Adel M; Ulrich, Albert

    1971-01-01

    Sodium absorption by intact sugar beet plants (Beta vulgaris) was found to be mediated by at least two distinct mechanisms when uptake was studied over a wide range of Na and K concentrations. The first mechanism operates at low Na concentrations (<1 milliequivalent per liter); presence of K completely blocks this mechanism for Na. The second mechanism operates at high Na concentrations (>1 milliequivalent per liter), transporting Na as well as K; but apparently this mechanism is not active for Na absorption in young sugar beet plants up to the 10-leaf stage. PMID:16657872

  14. Expanding Distribution of Lethal Amphibian Fungus Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans in Europe

    PubMed Central

    Spitzen-van der Sluijs, Annemarieke; Martel, An; Asselberghs, Johan; Bales, Emma K.; Beukema, Wouter; Bletz, Molly C.; Dalbeck, Lutz; Goverse, Edo; Kerres, Alexander; Kinet, Thierry; Kirst, Kai; Laudelout, Arnaud; Marin da Fonte, Luis F.; Nöllert, Andreas; Ohlhoff, Dagmar; Sabino-Pinto, Joana; Schmidt, Benedikt R.; Speybroeck, Jeroen; Spikmans, Frank; Steinfartz, Sebastian; Veith, Michael; Vences, Miguel; Wagner, Norman; Pasmans, Frank

    2016-01-01

    Emerging fungal diseases can drive amphibian species to local extinction. During 2010–2016, we examined 1,921 urodeles in 3 European countries. Presence of the chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans at new locations and in urodeles of different species expands the known geographic and host range of the fungus and underpins its imminent threat to biodiversity. PMID:27070102

  15. On the worrying fate of Data Deficient amphibians.

    PubMed

    Nori, Javier; Loyola, Rafael

    2015-01-01

    The 'Data Deficient' (DD) category of the IUCN Red List assembles species that cannot be placed in another category due to insufficient information. This process generates uncertainty about whether these species are safe or actually in danger. Here, we give a global overview on the current situation of DD amphibian species (almost a quarter of living amphibians) considering land-use change through habitat modification, the degree of protection of each species and the socio-political context of each country harboring DD species. We found that DD amphibians have, on average, 81% of their ranges totally outside protected areas. Worryingly, more than half of DD species have less than 1% of their distribution represented in protected areas. Furthermore, the percentage of overlap between species' range and human-modified landscapes is high, at approximately 58%. Many countries harboring a large number of DD species show a worrying socio-political trend illustrated by substantial, recent incremental increases in the Human Development Index and lower incremental increases in the establishment of protected areas. Most of these are African countries, which are located mainly in the central and southern regions of the continent. Other countries with similar socio-political trends are in southeastern Asia, Central America, and in the northern region of South America. This situation is concerning, but it also creates a huge opportunity for considering DD amphibians in future conservation assessments, planning, and policy at different levels of government administration.

  16. Utricular otoconia of some amphibians have calcitic morphology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pote, K. G.; Ross, M. D.

    1993-01-01

    This report concerns the morphological features of otoconia removed from the inner ear of four amphibian species. Results from scanning electron microscopic examination are compared based on the site of origin. These results show that utricular otoconia have a mineral structure that mimics calcite, rather than the widely accepted idea that they are mineralized by calcium carbonate of the aragonite polymorph.

  17. Emerging contaminants and their potential effects on amphibians and reptiles

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Serious threats to the health and sustainability of global amphibian populations have been well documented over the last few decades. Encroachment upon and destruction of primary habitat is the most critical threat, but some species have disappeared while their habitat remains. Additional stressor...

  18. Effects of pollution on freshwater fish and amphibians

    SciTech Connect

    Pickering, Q.H.; Hunt, E.P.; Phipps, G.L.; Roush, T.H.; Smith, W.E.; Spehar, D.L.; Stephan, C.E.; Tanner, D.K.

    1983-06-01

    A literature review is presented dealing with studies on the effects of pollution on freshwater fish and amphibians. The pollutants studied included acid mine drainage, PCBs, cadmium, lead, naphthalene, plutonium, in addition to several studies dealing with pH effects. (JMT)

  19. Effects of Terrestrial Buffer Zones on Amphibians on Golf Courses

    PubMed Central

    Puglis, Holly J.; Boone, Michelle D.

    2012-01-01

    A major cause of amphibian declines worldwide is habitat destruction or alteration. Public green spaces, such as golf courses and parks, could serve as safe havens to curb the effects of habitat loss if managed in ways to bolster local amphibian communities. We reared larval Blanchard's cricket frogs (Acris blanchardi) and green frogs (Rana clamitans) in golf course ponds with and without 1 m terrestrial buffer zones, and released marked cricket frog metamorphs at the golf course ponds they were reared in. Larval survival of both species was affected by the presence of a buffer zone, with increased survival for cricket frogs and decreased survival for green frogs when reared in ponds with buffer zones. No marked cricket frog juveniles were recovered at any golf course pond in the following year, suggesting that most animals died or migrated. In a separate study, we released cricket frogs in a terrestrial pen and allowed them to choose between mown and unmown grass. Cricket frogs had a greater probability of using unmown versus mown grass. Our results suggest that incorporating buffer zones around ponds can offer suitable habitat for some amphibian species and can improve the quality of the aquatic environment for some sensitive local amphibians. PMID:22761833

  20. AMPHIBIAN DECLINE, ULTRAVIOLET RADIATION AND LOCAL POPULATION ADAPTATION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Amphibian population declines have been noted on both local and global scales. Causes for these declines are unknown although many hypotheses have been offered. In areas adjacent to human development, loss of habitat is a fairly well accepted cause. However in isolated, seemingl...

  1. On the Worrying Fate of Data Deficient Amphibians

    PubMed Central

    Nori, Javier; Loyola, Rafael

    2015-01-01

    The ‘Data Deficient’ (DD) category of the IUCN Red List assembles species that cannot be placed in another category due to insufficient information. This process generates uncertainty about whether these species are safe or actually in danger. Here, we give a global overview on the current situation of DD amphibian species (almost a quarter of living amphibians) considering land-use change through habitat modification, the degree of protection of each species and the socio-political context of each country harboring DD species. We found that DD amphibians have, on average, 81% of their ranges totally outside protected areas. Worryingly, more than half of DD species have less than 1% of their distribution represented in protected areas. Furthermore, the percentage of overlap between species’ range and human-modified landscapes is high, at approximately 58%. Many countries harboring a large number of DD species show a worrying socio-political trend illustrated by substantial, recent incremental increases in the Human Development Index and lower incremental increases in the establishment of protected areas. Most of these are African countries, which are located mainly in the central and southern regions of the continent. Other countries with similar socio-political trends are in southeastern Asia, Central America, and in the northern region of South America. This situation is concerning, but it also creates a huge opportunity for considering DD amphibians in future conservation assessments, planning, and policy at different levels of government administration. PMID:25965422

  2. Glyphosate applications on arable fields considerably coincide with migrating amphibians.

    PubMed

    Berger, Gert; Graef, Frieder; Pfeffer, Holger

    2013-01-01

    Glyphosate usage is increasing worldwide and the application schemes of this herbicide are currently changing. Amphibians migrating through arable fields may be harmed by Glyphosate applied to field crops. We investigated the population-based temporal coincidence of four amphibian species with Glyphosate from 2006 to 2008. Depending on a) age- and species-specific main migration periods, b) crop species, c) Glyphosate application mode for crops, and d) the presumed DT50 value (12 days or 47 days) of Glyphosate, we calculated up to 100% coincidence with Glyphosate. The amphibians regularly co-occur with pre-sowing/pre-emerging Glyphosate applications to maize in spring and with stubble management prior to crop sowing in late summer and autumn. Siccation treatment in summer coincides only with early pond-leaving juveniles. We suggest in-depth investigations of both acute and long-term effects of Glyphosate applications on amphibian populations not only focussed on exposure during aquatic periods but also terrestrial life stages.

  3. Effects of terrestrial buffer zones on amphibians on golf courses.

    PubMed

    Puglis, Holly J; Boone, Michelle D

    2012-01-01

    A major cause of amphibian declines worldwide is habitat destruction or alteration. Public green spaces, such as golf courses and parks, could serve as safe havens to curb the effects of habitat loss if managed in ways to bolster local amphibian communities. We reared larval Blanchard's cricket frogs (Acris blanchardi) and green frogs (Rana clamitans) in golf course ponds with and without 1 m terrestrial buffer zones, and released marked cricket frog metamorphs at the golf course ponds they were reared in. Larval survival of both species was affected by the presence of a buffer zone, with increased survival for cricket frogs and decreased survival for green frogs when reared in ponds with buffer zones. No marked cricket frog juveniles were recovered at any golf course pond in the following year, suggesting that most animals died or migrated. In a separate study, we released cricket frogs in a terrestrial pen and allowed them to choose between mown and unmown grass. Cricket frogs had a greater probability of using unmown versus mown grass. Our results suggest that incorporating buffer zones around ponds can offer suitable habitat for some amphibian species and can improve the quality of the aquatic environment for some sensitive local amphibians.

  4. Engineering a future for amphibians under climate change

    Treesearch

    Luke P. Shoo; Deanna H. Olson; Sarah K. McMenamin; Kris A. Murray; Monique VanSluys; Maureen A. Donnelly; Danial Stratford; Juhani Terhivuo; Andres Merino-Viteri; Sarah M. Herbert; Phillip J. Bishop; Paul Stephen Corn; Liz Dovey; Richard A. Griffiths; Katrin Lowe; Michael Mahony; Hamish McCallum; Jonathan D. Shuker; Clay Simpkins; Lee F. Skerratt; Stephen E. Williams; Jean-Marc. Hero

    2011-01-01

    Altered global climates in the 21st century pose serious threats for biological systems and practical actions are needed to mount a response for species at risk. We identify management actions from across the world and from diverse disciplines that are applicable to minimizing loss of amphibian biodiversity under climate change. Actions were...

  5. Engineering a future for amphibians under a changing climate

    Treesearch

    Noreen Parks; Deanna H. Olson

    2011-01-01

    Climate variation exacerbates threats to amphibians such as disease and habitat loss. Yet, by and large existing species- and land-management plans give little if any consideration to climate impacts. Moreover, many management actions that do address emerging climate patterns have yet to be evaluated for feasibility and effectiveness. To help address these needs,...

  6. Streamside zone width and amphibian and reptile abundance

    Treesearch

    D. Craig Rudolph; James G. Dickson

    1990-01-01

    Many natural pine-hardwood stands in the southeastern United States are being converted to pine plantations with short rotations. This forest conversion alters vertebrate communities, particularly amphibians and reptiles (Bennett et al., 1980; Rakowitz, 1983). One practice in stand conversion to accommodate vertebrate species is the retention of strips of unharvested,...

  7. Pesticides in amphibian habitats of central and northern California

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Amphibians in California are facing serious population declines. Contaminants, especially pesticides, have been linked to these declines. This study reports on a survey of central and northern California wetlands sampled along four transects associated with Lassen National Park, Lake Tahoe, Yosemit...

  8. AmphiBIO, a global database for amphibian ecological traits.

    PubMed

    Oliveira, Brunno Freire; São-Pedro, Vinícius Avelar; Santos-Barrera, Georgina; Penone, Caterina; Costa, Gabriel C

    2017-09-05

    Current ecological and evolutionary research are increasingly moving from species- to trait-based approaches because traits provide a stronger link to organism's function and fitness. Trait databases covering a large number of species are becoming available, but such data remains scarce for certain groups. Amphibians are among the most diverse vertebrate groups on Earth, and constitute an abundant component of major terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems. They are also facing rapid population declines worldwide, which is likely to affect trait composition in local communities, thereby impacting ecosystem processes and services. In this context, we introduce AmphiBIO, a comprehensive database of natural history traits for amphibians worldwide. The database releases information on 17 traits related to ecology, morphology and reproduction features of amphibians. We compiled data from more than 1,500 literature sources, and for more than 6,500 species of all orders (Anura, Caudata and Gymnophiona), 61 families and 531 genera. This database has the potential to allow unprecedented large-scale analyses in ecology, evolution, and conservation of amphibians.

  9. LAGOON WATER FROM CONFINED ANIMAL FEED OPERATIONS AND AMPHIBIAN DEVELOPMENT

    EPA Science Inventory


    Lagoon Water from Confined Animal Feed Operations and Amphibian Development. Dumont, J. N.* and Slagle, S., Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK, and Hutchins, S. R., U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (NRMRL/SPRD), Ada, OK. There is some evidence that confined anima...

  10. Preliminary checklist of amphibians and reptiles from Baramita, Guyana

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Reynolds, R.P.; MacCulloch, R.D.

    2012-01-01

    We provide an initial checklist of the herpetofauna of Baramita, a lowland rainforest site in the Northwest Region of Guyana. Twenty-five amphibian and 28 reptile species were collected during two separate dry-season visits. New country records for two species of snakes are documented, contributing to the knowledge on the incompletely known herpetofauna of Guyana.

  11. Habitat relationships of amphibians and reptiles in California oak woodlands

    Treesearch

    William M. Block; Michael L. Morrison

    1998-01-01

    We used pitfall traps and time-constrained searches to sample amphibians and reptiles and to describe their habitats in oak woodlands at three areas in California. We captured 766 individuals representing 15 species during pitfall trapping and 333 animals representing 15 species during the time-constrained searches. A total of 19 species were sampled. Across all study...

  12. ULTRAVIOLET RADIATION DOSE AND AMPHIBIAN DISTRIBUTIONS IN NATIONAL PARKS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Ultraviolet Radiation Dose and Amphibian Distributions in National Parks. Diamond, S. A., Detenbeck, N. E., USEPA, Duluth, MN, USA, Bradford, D. F., USEPA, Las Vegas, NV, USA, Trenham, P. C., University of California, Davis, CA., USA, Adams, M. J., Corn, P. S., Hossack, B., USGS,...

  13. FACTORS IMPLICATED IN AMPHIBIAN POPULATION DECLINES IN THE UNITED STATES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Factors adversely affecting amphibian populations in the US were evaluated using information from species accounts written in a standardized format by multiple authors (Volume 2 of this book). For each species, factors implicated by the authors (i.e., known or suspected) as affec...

  14. Comment on "Habitat split and the global decline of amphibians".

    PubMed

    Cannatella, David C

    2008-05-16

    Becker et al. (Reports, 14 December 2007, p. 1775) reported that forest amphibians with terrestrial development are less susceptible to the effects of habitat degradation than those with aquatic larvae. However, analysis with more appropriate statistical methods suggests there is no evidence for a difference between aquatic-reproducing and terrestrial-reproducing species.

  15. AMPHIBIAN DECLINE, ULTRAVIOLET RADIATION AND LOCAL POPULATION ADAPTATION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Amphibian population declines have been noted on both local and global scales. Causes for these declines are unknown although many hypotheses have been offered. In areas adjacent to human development, loss of habitat is a fairly well accepted cause. However in isolated, seemingl...

  16. Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans sp. nov. causes lethal chytridiomycosis in amphibians.

    PubMed

    Martel, An; Spitzen-van der Sluijs, Annemarieke; Blooi, Mark; Bert, Wim; Ducatelle, Richard; Fisher, Matthew C; Woeltjes, Antonius; Bosman, Wilbert; Chiers, Koen; Bossuyt, Franky; Pasmans, Frank

    2013-09-17

    The current biodiversity crisis encompasses a sixth mass extinction event affecting the entire class of amphibians. The infectious disease chytridiomycosis is considered one of the major drivers of global amphibian population decline and extinction and is thought to be caused by a single species of aquatic fungus, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis. However, several amphibian population declines remain unexplained, among them a steep decrease in fire salamander populations (Salamandra salamandra) that has brought this species to the edge of local extinction. Here we isolated and characterized a unique chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans sp. nov., from this salamander population. This chytrid causes erosive skin disease and rapid mortality in experimentally infected fire salamanders and was present in skin lesions of salamanders found dead during the decline event. Together with the closely related B. dendrobatidis, this taxon forms a well-supported chytridiomycete clade, adapted to vertebrate hosts and highly pathogenic to amphibians. However, the lower thermal growth preference of B. salamandrivorans, compared with B. dendrobatidis, and resistance of midwife toads (Alytes obstetricans) to experimental infection with B. salamandrivorans suggest differential niche occupation of the two chytrid fungi.

  17. FACTORS IMPLICATED IN AMPHIBIAN POPULATION DECLINES IN THE UNITED STATES

    EPA Science Inventory

    This study identified the factors responsible for the decline of native amphibians in the U.S. The type of land use, the introduction of exotic animal species, and chemical contamination were identified as the most likely causes of decline.

  18. Can myxosporean parasites compromise fish and amphibian reproduction?

    PubMed

    Sitjà-Bobadilla, Ariadna

    2009-08-22

    Research into fish and amphibian reproduction has increased exponentially in recent years owing to the expansion of the aquaculture industry, the need to recover fishery populations, the impact of endocrine disruptors on the aquatic environment and the global decline of amphibian populations. This review focuses on a group of parasites, the Myxozoa, that affect fish and amphibian reproduction. Lists of the myxosporeans that specifically infect gonads are provided. Most of these are parasitic of freshwater hosts, and most amphibian cases are reported from testes. Sex specificity and sex reversal are discussed in relation to gonadal parasitism. The immune response of the fish to the infection is described, and the contribution of the immunoprivilege of gonads to host invasion is emphasized. The pathological effect of these parasites can be significant, especially in aquacultured broodstocks, on some occasions, leading to parasitic castration. Although myxosporean parasites are currently not very frequent in gonads, their impact could increase in the future owing to the transactions in the global market. Their easy release into the aquatic environment with spawning could make their spreading even more feasible. In the absence of commercial drugs or vaccines to treat and prevent these infections, there is an urgent need to develop specific, rapid and reliable diagnostic tools to control and manage animal movements. In addition, much effort is still to be made on deciphering the life cycle of these organisms, their invasion strategies and their immune evasion mechanisms.

  19. Measuring the meltdown: drivers of global amphibian extinction and decline.

    PubMed

    Sodhi, Navjot S; Bickford, David; Diesmos, Arvin C; Lee, Tien Ming; Koh, Lian Pin; Brook, Barry W; Sekercioglu, Cagan H; Bradshaw, Corey J A

    2008-02-20

    Habitat loss, climate change, over-exploitation, disease and other factors have been hypothesised in the global decline of amphibian biodiversity. However, the relative importance of and synergies among different drivers are still poorly understood. We present the largest global analysis of roughly 45% of known amphibians (2,583 species) to quantify the influences of life history, climate, human density and habitat loss on declines and extinction risk. Multi-model Bayesian inference reveals that large amphibian species with small geographic range and pronounced seasonality in temperature and precipitation are most likely to be Red-Listed by IUCN. Elevated habitat loss and human densities are also correlated with high threat risk. Range size, habitat loss and more extreme seasonality in precipitation contributed to decline risk in the 2,454 species that declined between 1980 and 2004, compared to species that were stable (n = 1,545) or had increased (n = 28). These empirical results show that amphibian species with restricted ranges should be urgently targeted for conservation.

  20. Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans sp. nov. causes lethal chytridiomycosis in amphibians

    PubMed Central

    Martel, An; Spitzen-van der Sluijs, Annemarieke; Blooi, Mark; Bert, Wim; Ducatelle, Richard; Fisher, Matthew C.; Woeltjes, Antonius; Bosman, Wilbert; Chiers, Koen; Bossuyt, Franky; Pasmans, Frank

    2013-01-01

    The current biodiversity crisis encompasses a sixth mass extinction event affecting the entire class of amphibians. The infectious disease chytridiomycosis is considered one of the major drivers of global amphibian population decline and extinction and is thought to be caused by a single species of aquatic fungus, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis. However, several amphibian population declines remain unexplained, among them a steep decrease in fire salamander populations (Salamandra salamandra) that has brought this species to the edge of local extinction. Here we isolated and characterized a unique chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans sp. nov., from this salamander population. This chytrid causes erosive skin disease and rapid mortality in experimentally infected fire salamanders and was present in skin lesions of salamanders found dead during the decline event. Together with the closely related B. dendrobatidis, this taxon forms a well-supported chytridiomycete clade, adapted to vertebrate hosts and highly pathogenic to amphibians. However, the lower thermal growth preference of B. salamandrivorans, compared with B. dendrobatidis, and resistance of midwife toads (Alytes obstetricans) to experimental infection with B. salamandrivorans suggest differential niche occupation of the two chytrid fungi. PMID:24003137

  1. A PCR survey for posterior Hox genes in amphibians.

    PubMed

    Mannaert, An; Roelants, Kim; Bossuyt, Franky; Leyns, Luc

    2006-02-01

    Hox genes encode transcription factors that play a key role in specifying the body plan in metazoans and are therefore essential in explaining patterns of evolutionary diversity. As an ancient tetrapod group with diverse limb types, amphibians are important for understanding the origin and diversification of limbs in land vertebrates. We conducted a PCR survey in two species of each amphibian order to identify Hox-9 to Hox-13, known to function in limb development. Fifteen distinct posterior Hox genes and one retro-pseudogene were identified, and the former confirm the existence of four Hox clusters in each amphibian order. Some genes expected to occur in all tetrapods, based on the posterior Hox complement of mammals, fishes and coelacanth, were not recovered from our survey, and may have been lost. Hoxd-12 is absent in frogs and possibly other amphibians. Considering its function in autopodial development, the loss of this gene may be related to the absence of the fifth finger in frogs and salamanders.

  2. FACTORS ADVERSELY AFFECTING AMPHIBIAN POPULATIONS IN THE US

    EPA Science Inventory

    Factors known or suspected to be adversely affecting native amphibian populations in the US were identified using information from species accounts written in a standardized format by multiple authors in a forthcoming book. Specific adverse factors were identified for 53 (58%) of...

  3. RISK ASSESSMENT FOR THE EFFECTS OF SOLAR RADIATION ON AMPHIBIANS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Recent studies have demonstrated that exposure to solar ultraviolet radiation (UVR) can cause mortality and increase the occurrence of eye and limb malformation in some species of amphibians. Based on these reports and various field observations, it has been hypothesized that UV...

  4. Amphibians and land use in the Chihuahuan Desert border region

    Treesearch

    Paulette L. Ford; Deborah M. Finch

    1999-01-01

    The pressures of growing borderland populations, increased land use, and Increased water use are threatening amphibians in the Chihuahuan Desert border area. In this paper, we describe potential direct threats such as loss or contamination of aquatic habitats, and indirect threats such as the sublethal effects of pesticides on developing larvae and tadpoles. More...

  5. Using Reptile and Amphibian Activities in the Classroom

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tomasek, Terry; Matthews, Catherine E.

    2008-01-01

    Reptiles and amphibians are a diverse and interesting group of organisms. The four activities described in this article take students' curiosity into the realm of scientific understanding. The activities involve the concepts of species identification; animal adaptations, communication, and habitat; and conservation. (Contains 1 table and 2…

  6. FACTORS ADVERSELY AFFECTING AMPHIBIAN POPULATIONS IN THE US

    EPA Science Inventory

    Factors known or suspected to be adversely affecting native amphibian populations in the US were identified using information from species accounts written in a standardized format by multiple authors in a forthcoming book. Specific adverse factors were identified for 53 (58%) of...

  7. Artificial fertilization for amphibian conservation: current knowledge and future considerations.

    PubMed

    Kouba, A J; Vance, C K; Willis, E L

    2009-01-01

    Amphibian populations in the wild are experiencing massive die-offs that have led to the extinction of an estimated 168 species in the last several decades. To address these declines, zoological institutions are playing an important role in establishing captive assurance colonies to protect species in imminent danger of extinction. Many of the threatened species recently placed into captivity are failing to reproduce before they expire, and maintaining founder populations is becoming a formidable challenge. Assisted reproductive technologies, such as hormone synchronization, gamete storage and artificial fertilization, are valuable tools for addressing reproductive failure of amphibians in captive facilities. Artificial fertilization has been commonly employed for over 60 years in several keystone laboratory species for basic studies in developmental biology and embryology. However, there are few instances of applied studies for the conservation of threatened or endangered amphibian species. In this review, we summarize valuable technological achievements in amphibian artificial fertilization, identify specific processes that need to be considered when developing artificial fertilization techniques for species conservation, and address future concerns that should be priorities for the next decade.

  8. Checklist of nematode parasites of amphibians from Argentina.

    PubMed

    González, Cynthya Elizabeth; Inés, Hamann Monika

    2015-07-01

    This review includes information about 47 taxa of nematode parasites reported from 34 species of Argentinean amphibians, all belonging to order Anura (33 native species and 1 introduced species). Thirty four nematode species have been reported as adults and 13 species were reported as larvae (10 taxa) or juveniles (3 taxa). Two species, Cosmocerca parva and C. podicipinus (Cosmocercidae), collected as adults, are the most commonly occurring adult nematodes in Argentinean amphibians; each of them parasitize 14 amphibian species. The bufonid Rhinella schneideri and the leptodactylid Leptodactylus bufonius present the highest species richness of parasitic nematodes (9 species); followed by Rhinella fernandezae, R. arenarum and Leptodactylus chaquensis, each of which is parasitized by 8 nematode species. Mean species richenss was highest for the family Bufonidae (4.5±3.4; range: 1-9); followed by the Leptodactylidae (3.5±2.8; range: 1-9). Data on hosts, geographical distribution, site of infection, location of deposited materials, and information about life cycles are provided. This is the first compilation of information on nematode parasites of amphibians in Argentina.

  9. Using Reptile and Amphibian Activities in the Classroom

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tomasek, Terry; Matthews, Catherine E.

    2008-01-01

    Reptiles and amphibians are a diverse and interesting group of organisms. The four activities described in this article take students' curiosity into the realm of scientific understanding. The activities involve the concepts of species identification; animal adaptations, communication, and habitat; and conservation. (Contains 1 table and 2…

  10. ULTRAVIOLET RADIATION DOSE AND AMPHIBIAN DISTRIBUTIONS IN NATIONAL PARKS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Ultraviolet Radiation Dose and Amphibian Distributions in National Parks. Diamond, S. A., Detenbeck, N. E., USEPA, Duluth, MN, USA, Bradford, D. F., USEPA, Las Vegas, NV, USA, Trenham, P. C., University of California, Davis, CA., USA, Adams, M. J., Corn, P. S., Hossack, B., USGS,...

  11. RISK ASSESSMENT FOR THE EFFECTS OF SOLAR RADIATION ON AMPHIBIANS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Recent studies have demonstrated that exposure to solar ultraviolet radiation (UVR) can cause mortality and increase the occurrence of eye and limb malformation in some species of amphibians. Based on these reports and various field observations, it has been hypothesized that UV...

  12. Alien mink predation induces prolonged declines in archipelago amphibians

    PubMed Central

    Ahola, Markus; Nordström, Mikael; Banks, Peter B; Laanetu, Nikolai; Korpimäki, Erkki

    2006-01-01

    Amphibians are undergoing enigmatic global declines variously attributed to a complex web of anthropogenic forces. Alien predators pose a fundamental threat to biodiversity generally that is predicted to be most acute in island ecosystems. While amphibian eggs and tadpoles are vulnerable to aquatic predators, the effect of predators on adult, reproducing frogs, which most influence amphibian population processes, is unknown. Here, we report on the responses of amphibian populations in the outer Finnish Archipelago to a long-term, large-scale removal of American mink (Mustela vison Schreb.), an invasive predator linked to recent biodiversity loss across Europe. Removal increased both the densities and distribution of common frogs (Rana temporaria L.) but not those of common toads (Bufo bufo L.), which appear to escape mink predation because of their unpalatable skin. Importantly, the largest benefits of mink removal to frog recovery were slow to appear as frogs apparently have a delayed maturation in these harsh environments, which means we must be cautious about reliance upon short-term results. PMID:16720400

  13. [Electrophoresis of native cardiac myosin in Anura amphibians].

    PubMed

    Dutartre, P; Mougin, D; Bride, M

    1983-01-01

    Electrophoresis in non dissociating conditions of native cardiac myosin was adapted to the study of Amphibian myosin. Utilization of potassium ion has allowed to obtain a good separation of myosin isoenzymes. An evolution of isoenzymic composition of cardiac myosin during metamorphosis and aging in Xenopus laevis (Daudin) was observed.

  14. Using Amphibians and Reptiles To Learn the Process of Science.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Greene, Janice Schnake; Greene, Brian D.

    2001-01-01

    Discusses using amphibians and reptiles as an excellent resource for students to observe and gain an understanding of the process of science. These animals are easy to maintain in the classroom and play important roles in ecosystems as the prey for many birds and mammals and as the predators of various organisms. (SAH)

  15. Using Amphibians and Reptiles To Learn the Process of Science.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Greene, Janice Schnake; Greene, Brian D.

    2001-01-01

    Discusses using amphibians and reptiles as an excellent resource for students to observe and gain an understanding of the process of science. These animals are easy to maintain in the classroom and play important roles in ecosystems as the prey for many birds and mammals and as the predators of various organisms. (SAH)

  16. Occurrence of amphibians in northern California coastal dune drainages

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Halstead, Brian J.; Kleeman, Patrick M.

    2017-01-01

    Many coastal dune ecosystems have been degraded by non-native dune vegetation, but these systems might still provide valuable habitat for some taxa, including amphibians. Because restoration of degraded dune systems is occurring and likely to continue, we examined the occurrence of amphibians in drainages associated with a coastal dune ecosystem degraded by invasive plants (European Beachgrass, Ammophila arenaria, and Iceplant, Carpobrotus edulis). We found that occupancy of 3 amphibian species (California Red-legged Frog, Rana draytonii; Sierran Treefrog, Hyliola sierra; and Rough-skinned Newt, Taricha granulosa) among 21 coastal-dune drainages was high, with most coastal-dune drainages occupied by all 3 species. Furthermore, reproduction of Sierran Treefrogs and California Red-legged Frogs was estimated to occur in approximately ½ and ⅓ of the drainages, respectively. The probability of occurrence of Rough-skinned Newts and pre-metamorphic life stages of both anurans decreased during the study, perhaps because of ongoing drought in California or precipitation-induced changes in phenology during the final year of the study. Maintaining structural cover and moist features during dune restoration will likely benefit native amphibian populations inhabiting coastal-dune ecosystems.

  17. Spatial Biodiversity Patterns of Madagascar's Amphibians and Reptiles.

    PubMed

    Brown, Jason L; Sillero, Neftali; Glaw, Frank; Bora, Parfait; Vieites, David R; Vences, Miguel

    2016-01-01

    Madagascar has become a model region for testing hypotheses of species diversification and biogeography, and many studies have focused on its diverse and highly endemic herpetofauna. Here we combine species distribution models of a near-complete set of species of reptiles and amphibians known from the island with body size data and a tabulation of herpetofaunal communities from field surveys, compiled up to 2008. Though taxonomic revisions and novel distributional records arose since compilation, we are confident that the data are appropriate for inferring and comparing biogeographic patterns among these groups of organisms. We observed species richness of both amphibians and reptiles was highest in the humid rainforest biome of eastern Madagascar, but reptiles also show areas of high richness in the dry and subarid western biomes. In several amphibian subclades, especially within the Mantellidae, species richness peaks in the central eastern geographic regions while in reptiles different subclades differ distinctly in their richness centers. A high proportion of clades and subclades of both amphibians and reptiles have a peak of local endemism in the topographically and bioclimatically diverse northern geographic regions. This northern area is roughly delimited by a diagonal spanning from 15.5°S on the east coast to ca. 15.0°S on the west coast. Amphibian diversity is highest at altitudes between 800-1200 m above sea-level whereas reptiles have their highest richness at low elevations, probably reflecting the comparatively large number of species specialized to the extended low-elevation areas in the dry and subarid biomes. We found that the range sizes of both amphibians and reptiles strongly correlated with body size, and differences between the two groups are explained by the larger body sizes of reptiles. However, snakes have larger range sizes than lizards which cannot be readily explained by their larger body sizes alone. Range filling, i.e., the amount of

  18. Spatial Biodiversity Patterns of Madagascar's Amphibians and Reptiles

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Jason L.; Sillero, Neftali; Glaw, Frank; Bora, Parfait; Vieites, David R.; Vences, Miguel

    2016-01-01

    Madagascar has become a model region for testing hypotheses of species diversification and biogeography, and many studies have focused on its diverse and highly endemic herpetofauna. Here we combine species distribution models of a near-complete set of species of reptiles and amphibians known from the island with body size data and a tabulation of herpetofaunal communities from field surveys, compiled up to 2008. Though taxonomic revisions and novel distributional records arose since compilation, we are confident that the data are appropriate for inferring and comparing biogeographic patterns among these groups of organisms. We observed species richness of both amphibians and reptiles was highest in the humid rainforest biome of eastern Madagascar, but reptiles also show areas of high richness in the dry and subarid western biomes. In several amphibian subclades, especially within the Mantellidae, species richness peaks in the central eastern geographic regions while in reptiles different subclades differ distinctly in their richness centers. A high proportion of clades and subclades of both amphibians and reptiles have a peak of local endemism in the topographically and bioclimatically diverse northern geographic regions. This northern area is roughly delimited by a diagonal spanning from 15.5°S on the east coast to ca. 15.0°S on the west coast. Amphibian diversity is highest at altitudes between 800–1200 m above sea-level whereas reptiles have their highest richness at low elevations, probably reflecting the comparatively large number of species specialized to the extended low-elevation areas in the dry and subarid biomes. We found that the range sizes of both amphibians and reptiles strongly correlated with body size, and differences between the two groups are explained by the larger body sizes of reptiles. However, snakes have larger range sizes than lizards which cannot be readily explained by their larger body sizes alone. Range filling, i.e., the amount

  19. 33 CFR 157.22 - Intact stability requirements.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... 33 Navigation and Navigable Waters 2 2011-07-01 2011-07-01 false Intact stability requirements... OIL IN BULK Design, Equipment, and Installation § 157.22 Intact stability requirements. All tank ships of 5,000 DWT and above contracted after December 3, 2001 must comply with the intact stability...

  20. 33 CFR 157.22 - Intact stability requirements.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... 33 Navigation and Navigable Waters 2 2012-07-01 2012-07-01 false Intact stability requirements... OIL IN BULK Design, Equipment, and Installation § 157.22 Intact stability requirements. All tank ships of 5,000 DWT and above contracted after December 3, 2001 must comply with the intact stability...

  1. 33 CFR 157.22 - Intact stability requirements.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... 33 Navigation and Navigable Waters 2 2013-07-01 2013-07-01 false Intact stability requirements... OIL IN BULK Design, Equipment, and Installation § 157.22 Intact stability requirements. All tank ships of 5,000 DWT and above contracted after December 3, 2001 must comply with the intact stability...

  2. 33 CFR 157.22 - Intact stability requirements.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... 33 Navigation and Navigable Waters 2 2014-07-01 2014-07-01 false Intact stability requirements... OIL IN BULK Design, Equipment, and Installation § 157.22 Intact stability requirements. All tank ships of 5,000 DWT and above contracted after December 3, 2001 must comply with the intact stability...

  3. 33 CFR 157.22 - Intact stability requirements.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... 33 Navigation and Navigable Waters 2 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Intact stability requirements... OIL IN BULK Design, Equipment, and Installation § 157.22 Intact stability requirements. All tank ships of 5,000 DWT and above contracted after December 3, 2001 must comply with the intact stability...

  4. Rapid isolation of intact chloroplasts from spinach leaves.

    PubMed

    Joly, David; Carpentier, Robert

    2011-01-01

    In this chapter, a rapid method to isolate intact chloroplasts from spinach leaves is described. Intact chloroplasts are isolated using two short centrifugation steps and avoiding the use of percoll gradient. Intactness of chloroplast is evaluated by the inability of potassium ferricyanide to enter inside the chloroplasts and to act as an electron acceptor for photosystem II.

  5. Bioaccumulation and maternal transfer of mercury and selenium in amphibians.

    PubMed

    Bergeron, Christine M; Bodinof, Catherine M; Unrine, Jason M; Hopkins, William A

    2010-04-01

    Amphibian population declines have been documented worldwide and environmental contaminants are believed to contribute to some declines. Maternal transfer of bioaccumulated contaminants to offspring may be an important and overlooked mechanism of impaired reproductive success that affects amphibian populations. Mercury (Hg) is of particular concern due to its ubiquity in the environment, known toxicity to other wildlife, and complex relationships with other elements, such as selenium (Se). The objectives of the present study were to describe the relationships between total Hg (THg), methlymercury (MMHg), and Se in three amphibian species (Plethodon cinereus, Eurycea bislineata cirrigera, and Bufo americanus) along a Hg-polluted river and floodplain, and to determine if B. americanus maternally transfers Hg and Se to its eggs in a tissue residue-dependent manner. Total Hg and MMHg concentrations in all species spanned two orders of magnitude between the reference and contaminated areas, while Se concentrations were generally low in all species at both sites. Strong positive relationships between THg and MMHg in tissues of all species were observed throughout. Both Hg and Se were maternally transferred from females to eggs in B. americanus, but the percentage of the females' Hg body burden transferred to eggs was low compared with Se. In addition, Hg concentrations appeared to positively influence the amount of Se transferred from female to eggs. The present study is the first to confirm a correlation between Hg concentrations in female carcass and eggs in amphibians and among the first to describe co-transference of Se and Hg in an anamniotic vertebrate. The results suggest future work is needed to determine whether maternal transfer of Hg has transgenerational implications for amphibian progeny.

  6. Development of a mobile application for amphibian species recognition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parveen, B.; H, Chew T.; Shamsir, M. S.; Ahmad, N.

    2014-02-01

    The smartphones mobility and its pervasiveness are beginning to transform practices in biodiversity conservation. The integrated functionalities of a smartphone have created for the public and biodiversity specialists means to identify, gather and record biodiversity data while simultaneously creating knowledge portability in the digital forms of mobile guides. Smartphones enable beginners to recreate the delight of species identification usually reserved for specialist with years of experience. Currently, the advent of Android platform has enabled stakeholders in biodiversity to harness the ubiquity of this platform and create various types of mobile application or "apps" for use in biodiversity research and conservation. However, there is an apparent lack of application devoted to the identification in herpetofauna or amphibian science. Amphibians are a large class of animals with many different species still unidentified under this category. Here we describe the development of an app called Amphibian Recognition Android Application (ARAA) to identify frog amphibian species as well as an accompanying field guide. The app has the amphibian taxonomic key which assists the users in easy and rapid species identification, thus facilitating the process of identification and recording of species occurrences in conservation work. We will also present an overview of the application work flow and how it is designed to meet the needs a conservationist. As this application is still in its beta phase, further research is required to improve the application to include tools such automatic geolocation and geotagging, participative sensing via crowdsourcing and automated identification via image capture. We believe that the introduction of this app will create an impetus to the awareness of nature via species identification.

  7. Applied reproductive technologies and genetic resource banking for amphibian conservation.

    PubMed

    Kouba, Andrew J; Vance, Carrie K

    2009-01-01

    As amphibian populations continue to decline, both government and non-government organisations are establishing captive assurance colonies to secure populations deemed at risk of extinction if left in the wild. For the most part, little is known about the nutritional ecology, reproductive biology or husbandry needs of the animals placed into captive breeding programs. Because of this lack of knowledge, conservation biologists are currently facing the difficult task of maintaining and reproducing these species. Academic and zoo scientists are beginning to examine different technologies for maintaining the genetic diversity of founder populations brought out of the wild before the animals become extinct from rapidly spreading epizootic diseases. One such technology is genetic resource banking and applied reproductive technologies for species that are difficult to reproduce reliably in captivity. Significant advances have been made in the last decade for amphibian assisted reproduction including the use of exogenous hormones for induction of spermiation and ovulation, in vitro fertilisation, short-term cold storage of gametes and long-term cryopreservation of spermatozoa. These scientific breakthroughs for a select few species will no doubt serve as models for future assisted breeding protocols and the increasing number of amphibians requiring conservation intervention. However, the development of specialised assisted breeding protocols that can be applied to many different families of amphibians will likely require species-specific modifications considering their wide range of reproductive modes. The purpose of this review is to summarise the current state of knowledge in the area of assisted reproduction technologies and gene banking for the conservation of amphibians.

  8. Projected climate impacts for the amphibians of the western hemisphere

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lawler, Joshua J.; Shafer, Sarah L.; Bancroft, Betsy A.; Blaustein, Andrew R.

    2010-01-01

    Given their physiological requirements, limited dispersal abilities, and hydrologically sensitive habitats, amphibians are likely to be highly sensitive to future climatic changes. We used three approaches to map areas in the western hemisphere where amphibians are particularly likely to be affected by climate change. First, we used bioclimatic models to project potential climate-driven shifts in the distribution of 413 amphibian species based on 20 climate simulations for 2071–2100. We summarized these projections to produce estimates of species turnover. Second, we mapped the distribution of 1099 species with restricted geographic ranges. Finally, using the 20 future climate-change simulations, we mapped areas that were consistently projected to receive less seasonal precipitation in the coming century and thus were likely to have altered microclimates and local hydrologies. Species turnover was projected to be highest in the Andes Mountains and parts of Central America and Mexico, where, on average, turnover rates exceeded 60% under the lower of two emissions scenarios. Many of the restricted-range species not included in our range-shift analyses were concentrated in parts of the Andes and Central America and in Brazil's Atlantic Forest. Much of Central America, southwestern North America, and parts of South America were consistently projected to experience decreased precipitation by the end of the century. Combining the results of the three analyses highlighted several areas in which amphibians are likely to be significantly affected by climate change for multiple reasons. Portions of southern Central America were simultaneously projected to experience high species turnover, have many additional restricted-range species, and were consistently projected to receive less precipitation. Together, our three analyses form one potential assessment of the geographic vulnerability of amphibians to climate change and as such provide broad-scale guidance for directing

  9. Inventory of amphibians and reptiles at Death Valley National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Persons, Trevor B.; Nowak, Erika M.

    2006-01-01

    As part of the National Park Service Inventory and Monitoring Program in the Mojave Network, we conducted an inventory of amphibians and reptiles at Death Valley National Park in 2002-04. Objectives for this inventory were to: 1) Inventory and document the occurrence of reptile and amphibian species occurring at DEVA, primarily within priority sampling areas, with the goal of documenting at least 90% of the species present; 2) document (through collection or museum specimen and literature review) one voucher specimen for each species identified; 3) provide a GIS-referenced list of sensitive species that are federally or state listed, rare, or worthy of special consideration that occur within priority sampling locations; 4) describe park-wide distribution of federally- or state-listed, rare, or special concern species; 5) enter all species data into the National Park Service NPSpecies database; and 6) provide all deliverables as outlined in the Mojave Network Biological Inventory Study Plan. Methods included daytime and nighttime visual encounter surveys, road driving, and pitfall trapping. Survey effort was concentrated in predetermined priority sampling areas, as well as in areas with a high potential for detecting undocumented species. We recorded 37 species during our surveys, including two species new to the park. During literature review and museum specimen database searches, we recorded three additional species from DEVA, elevating the documented species list to 40 (four amphibians and 36 reptiles). Based on our surveys, as well as literature and museum specimen review, we estimate an overall inventory completeness of 92% for Death Valley and an inventory completeness of 73% for amphibians and 95% for reptiles. Key Words: Amphibians, reptiles, Death Valley National Park, Inyo County, San Bernardino County, Esmeralda County, Nye County, California, Nevada, Mojave Desert, Great Basin Desert, inventory, NPSpecies.

  10. Angiopoietin-1 enhances skeletal muscle regeneration in mice.

    PubMed

    Mofarrahi, Mahroo; McClung, Joseph M; Kontos, Christopher D; Davis, Elaine C; Tappuni, Bassman; Moroz, Nicolay; Pickett, Amy E; Huck, Laurent; Harel, Sharon; Danialou, Gawiyou; Hussain, Sabah N A

    2015-04-01

    Activation of muscle progenitor cell myogenesis and endothelial cell angiogenesis is critical for the recovery of skeletal muscle from injury. Angiopoietin-1 (Ang-1), a ligand of Tie-2 receptors, enhances angiogenesis and skeletal muscle satellite cell survival; however, its role in skeletal muscle regeneration after injury is unknown. We assessed the effects of Ang-1 on fiber regeneration, myogenesis, and angiogenesis in injured skeletal muscle (tibialis anterior, TA) in mice. We also assessed endogenous Ang-1 levels and localization in intact and injured TA muscles. TA fiber injury was triggered by cardiotoxin injection. Endogenous Ang-1 mRNA levels immediately decreased in response to cardiotoxin then increased during the 2 wk. Ang-1 protein was expressed in satellite cells, both in noninjured and recovering TA muscles. Positive Ang-1 staining was present in blood vessels but not in nerve fibers. Four days after the initiation of injury, injection of adenoviral Ang-1 into injured muscles resulted in significant increases in in situ TA muscle contractility, muscle fiber regeneration, and capillary density. In cultured human skeletal myoblasts, recombinant Ang-1 protein increased survival, proliferation, migration, and differentiation into myotubes. The latter effect was associated with significant upregulation of the expression of the myogenic regulatory factors MyoD and Myogenin and certain genes involved in cell cycle regulation. We conclude that Ang-1 strongly enhances skeletal muscle regeneration in response to fiber injury and that this effect is mediated through induction of the myogenesis program in muscle progenitor cells and the angiogenesis program in endothelial cells.

  11. RNA aptamer delivery through intact human skin.

    PubMed

    Lenn, Jon D; Neil, Jessica; Donahue, Christine; Demock, Kellie; Tibbetts, Caitlin Vestal; Cote-Sierra, Javier; Smith, Susan H; Rubenstein, David; Therrien, Jean-Philippe; Pendergrast, P Shannon; Killough, Jason; Brown, Marc B; Williams, Adrian C

    2017-09-20

    It is generally recognised that only relatively small molecular weight (typically < ∼500 Da) drugs can effectively permeate through intact stratum corneum. Here, we challenge this orthodoxy using a 62-nucleotide (MW=20,395) RNA-based aptamer, highly specific to the human IL-23 cytokine, with picomolar activity. Results demonstrate penetration of the aptamer into freshly excised human skin using two different fluorescent labels. A dual hybridisation assay quantified aptamer from the epidermis and dermis giving levels far exceeding the cellular IC50 values (> 100,000-fold) and aptamer integrity was confirmed using an oligonucleotide precipitation assay. A Th17 response was stimulated in freshly excised human skin resulting in significantly upregulated IL-17f, and 22; topical application of the IL-23 aptamer decreased both IL-17f and IL-22 by approximately 45% but did not result in significant changes to IL-23 mRNA levels, confirming that the aptamer did not globally suppress mRNA levels. This study demonstrates that very large molecular weight RNA aptamers can permeate across the intact human skin barrier to therapeutically relevant levels into both the epidermis and dermis and that the skin penetrating aptamer retains its biologically active conformational structure capable of binding to endogenous IL-23. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Assessment of the risk of solar ultraviolet radiation to amphibians. II. In situ characterzation of exposure in amphibian habitats.

    PubMed

    Peterson, Gregory S; Johnson, Lucinda B; Axler, Richard P; Diamond, Stephen A

    2002-07-01

    Ultraviolet B (UVB) radiation has been hypothesized as a potential cause of amphibian population declines and increased incidence of malformations. Realistic studies documenting UV irradiance or dose have rarely been conducted in wetlands used by amphibians. Our data indicates that 99% of UVB is attenuated in the top 5-20 cm of wetlands in our study region (northern Minnesota and Wisconsin). Furthermore, vegetation and other habitat features have substantial impacts on local UVB irradiance levels and dose. UVB attenuation in the water columns of our wetlands is controlled by the specific absorption of dissolved organic carbon (DOC), and consequently, UVB attenuation is best predicted by simple laboratory absorbance measurements such as bulk water color (absorbance at 440 nm) or wavelength-specific absorbance coefficients. Seasonal data indicate thatthe UVB absorption by early and mid-season DOC is higher than that of late summer and fall DOC, suggesting increased protection from UVB during the potentially sensitive stages of amphibian development. In addition to dissolved components, our model indicates that suspended solids play a small role in UVB attenuation in our wetlands but apparently only at high concentrations. Models predicting UV attenuation in wetlands should be used cautiously and should consider temporal variability, given the volatility and dynamic nature of water column characteristics in wetlands. Organism behavior is a critical but poorly understood phenomenon that must be addressed for development of an accurate UV exposure risk model for amphibians.

  13. Skeletal tuberculosis in children.

    PubMed

    Teo, Harvey E L; Peh, Wilfred C G

    2004-11-01

    The objective of this review is to present the imaging findings of skeletal tuberculosis in children. The incidence of tuberculosis is increasing and skeletal tuberculosis accounts for 10-20% of all extra-pulmonary cases. The most common manifestations of skeletal tuberculosis in children are spondylitis, arthritis and osteomyelitis. Tuberculous spondylitis involves the intervertebral disc only late in the disease. Subligamentous spread of the infection may lead to multiple levels of vertebral body involvement that may either be continuous or skipped. Extension of the disease into the paravertebral or extra-dural space may occur. Tuberculous arthritis usually occurs as a result of metaphyseal spread to the joint. Tuberculous osteomyelitis may appear as cystic, well-defined lesions, infiltrative lesions or spina ventosa. The latter is a term used to describe a form of tuberculous osteomyelitis where underlying bone destruction, overlying periosteal reaction and fusiform expansion of the bone results in cyst-like cavities with diaphyseal expansion. Radiographs are still the mainstay of evaluation of patients with bony lesions. Ultrasonography can detect soft-tissue extension of the bony lesions and guide drainage or biopsy procedures. CT accurately demonstrates bony sclerosis and destruction, especially in areas difficult to assess on radiographs such as the posterior elements of the vertebral body. MRI is the modality of choice in evaluating early marrow involvement and soft-tissue extension of the lesion.

  14. Recollections of Parent Characteristics and Attachment Patterns for College Women of Intact vs. Non-Intact Families

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kilmann, Peter R.; Carranza, Laura V.; Vendemia, Jennifer M. C.

    2006-01-01

    This study contrasted offsprings' attachment patterns and recollections of parent characteristics in two college samples: 147 females from intact biological parents and 157 females of parental divorce. Secure females from intact or non-intact families rated parents positively, while insecure females rated parents as absent, distant, and demanding.…

  15. Recollections of Parent Characteristics and Attachment Patterns for College Women of Intact vs. Non-Intact Families

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kilmann, Peter R.; Carranza, Laura V.; Vendemia, Jennifer M. C.

    2006-01-01

    This study contrasted offsprings' attachment patterns and recollections of parent characteristics in two college samples: 147 females from intact biological parents and 157 females of parental divorce. Secure females from intact or non-intact families rated parents positively, while insecure females rated parents as absent, distant, and demanding.…

  16. 'Idealized' state 4 and state 3 in mitochondria vs. rest and work in skeletal muscle.

    PubMed

    Korzeniewski, Bernard

    2015-01-01

    A computer model of oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) in skeletal muscle is used to compare state 3, intermediate state and state 4 in mitochondria with rest and work in skeletal muscle. 'Idealized' state 4 and 3 in relation to various 'experimental' states 4 and 3 are defined. Theoretical simulations show, in accordance with experimental data, that oxygen consumption (V'O2), ADP and Pi are higher, while ATP/ADP and Δp are lower in rest than in state 4, because of the presence of basal ATP consuming reactions in the former. It is postulated that moderate and intensive work in skeletal muscle is very different from state 3 in isolated mitochondria. V'O2, ATP/ADP, Δp and the control of ATP usage over V'O2 are much higher, while ADP and Pi are much lower in the former. The slope of the phenomenological V'O2-ADP relationship is much steeper during the rest-work transition than during the state 4-state 3 transition. The work state in intact muscle is much more similar to intermediate state than to state 3 in isolated mitochondria in terms of ADP, ATP/ADP, Δp and metabolic control pattern, but not in terms of V'O2. The huge differences between intact muscle and isolated mitochondria are proposed to be caused by the presence of the each-step activation (ESA) mechanism of the regulation of OXPHOS in intact skeletal muscle. Generally, the present study suggests that isolated mitochondria (at least in the absence of Ca2+) cannot serve as a good model of OXPHOS regulation in intact skeletal muscle.

  17. Survival of the amphibian chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis on bare hands and gloves: hygiene implications for amphibian handling.

    PubMed

    Mendez, Diana; Webb, Rebecca; Berger, Lee; Speare, Rick

    2008-11-20

    Hygiene protocols for handling amphibians in the field and in laboratories have been proposed to decrease the transmission of chytridiomycosis caused by infection with the amphibian chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, which is responsible for global amphibian declines. However, these protocols are mainly based on theoretical principles. The aim of this study was to develop an evidence-based approach to amphibian handling hygiene protocols by testing the survival of B. dendrobatidis on human hands and various gloves. Bare or gloved human fingers were exposed to cultured zoospores and zoosporangia of B. dendrobatidis. Survival of B. dendrobatidis on hands and gloves was tested for up to 10 min post-exposure by inoculation onto tryptone/gelatin hydrolysate/lactose (TGhL) agar plates. The effects of repeated hand washings with water and with 70% ethanol and of washing gloves with water were also tested. Bare human skin demonstrated a fungicidal effect on B. dendrobatidis by 2 min and killed 100% of cells by 6 min, but this killing effect was reduced by repeated washing with water and ethanol. Nitrile gloves killed all B. dendrobatidis on contact, but washing in water decreased this effect. Latex and polyethylene gloves had no killing effect, and B. dendrobatidis survived for over 6 min. The killing effect of vinyl gloves varied with brands and batches. These results support the use of an unused pair of gloves for each new amphibian handled in either the field or the laboratory, and if this is not possible, bare hands are a preferable, although imperfect, alternative to continual use of the same pair of gloves.

  18. Oligodeoxynucleotide Probes for Detecting Intact Cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rosson, Reinhardt A.; Maurina-Brunker, Julie; Langley, Kim; Pynnonen, Christine M.

    2004-01-01

    A rapid, sensitive test using chemiluminescent oligodeoxynucleotide probes has been developed for detecting, identifying, and enumerating intact cells. The test is intended especially for use in detecting and enumerating bacteria and yeasts in potable water. As in related tests that have been developed recently for similar purposes, the oligodeoxynucleotide probes used in this test are typically targeted at either singlecopy deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) genes (such as virulence genes) or the multiple copies (10,000 to 50,000 copies per cell) of 16S ribosomal ribonucleic acids (rRNAs). Some of those tests involve radioisotope or fluorescent labeling of the probes for reporting hybridization of probes to target nucleic acids. Others of those tests involve labeling with enzymes plus the use of chemiluminescent or chromogenic substrates to report hybridization via color or the emission of light, respectively. The present test is of the last-mentioned type. The chemiluminescence in the present test can be detected easily with relatively simple instrumentation. In developing the present test, the hybridization approach was chosen because hybridization techniques are very specific. Hybridization detects stable, inheritable genetic targets within microorganisms. These targets are not dependent on products of gene expression that can vary with growth conditions or physiological states of organisms in test samples. Therefore, unique probes can be designed to detect and identify specific genera or species of bacteria or yeast (in terms of rRNA target sequences) or can be designed to detect and identify virulence genes (genomic target sequences). Because of the inherent specificity of this system, there are few problems of cross-reactivity. Hybridization tests are rapid, but hybridization tests now available commercially lack sensitivity; typically, between 10(exp 6) and 10(exp 7) cells of the target organism are needed to ensure a reliable test. Consequently, the numbers of

  19. The IntAct molecular interaction database in 2012

    PubMed Central

    Kerrien, Samuel; Aranda, Bruno; Breuza, Lionel; Bridge, Alan; Broackes-Carter, Fiona; Chen, Carol; Duesbury, Margaret; Dumousseau, Marine; Feuermann, Marc; Hinz, Ursula; Jandrasits, Christine; Jimenez, Rafael C.; Khadake, Jyoti; Mahadevan, Usha; Masson, Patrick; Pedruzzi, Ivo; Pfeiffenberger, Eric; Porras, Pablo; Raghunath, Arathi; Roechert, Bernd; Orchard, Sandra; Hermjakob, Henning

    2012-01-01

    IntAct is an open-source, open data molecular interaction database populated by data either curated from the literature or from direct data depositions. Two levels of curation are now available within the database, with both IMEx-level annotation and less detailed MIMIx-compatible entries currently supported. As from September 2011, IntAct contains approximately 275 000 curated binary interaction evidences from over 5000 publications. The IntAct website has been improved to enhance the search process and in particular the graphical display of the results. New data download formats are also available, which will facilitate the inclusion of IntAct's data in the Semantic Web. IntAct is an active contributor to the IMEx consortium (http://www.imexconsortium.org). IntAct source code and data are freely available at http://www.ebi.ac.uk/intact. PMID:22121220

  20. Functional and biochemical modifications in skeletal muscles from malarial mice.

    PubMed

    Brotto, Marco A P; Marrelli, Mauro T; Brotto, Leticia S; Jacobs-Lorena, Marcelo; Nosek, Thomas M

    2005-05-01

    Although it is well established that patients suffering from malaria experience skeletal muscle problems (contracture, aches, fatigue, weakness), detailed studies have not been performed to investigate changes in the contractile function and biochemical properties of intact and skinned skeletal muscles of mammals infected with malaria. To this end, we investigated such features in the extensor digitorium longus (EDL, fast-twitch, glyocolytic) and in the soleus (SOL, slow-twitch, oxidative) muscles from mice infected with Plasmodium berghei. We first studied maximal tetanic force (T(max)) produced by intact control and malaria-infected muscles before, during and after fatigue. Triton-skinned muscle fibres were isolated from these muscles and used to determine isometric contractile features as well as a basic biochemical profile as analysed by silver-enhanced SDS-PAGE. We found that the T(max) of intact muscles and the maximal Ca2+-activated force (F(max)) of Triton-skinned muscle fibres were reduced by approximately 50% in malarial muscles. In addition, the contractile proteins of Triton-skinned muscle fibres from malarial muscles were significantly less sensitive to Ca2+. Biochemical analysis revealed that there was a significant loss of essential contractile proteins (e.g. troponins and myosin) in Triton-skinned muscle fibres from malarial muscles as compared to controls. The biochemical alterations (i.e., reduction of essential contractile proteins) seem to explain well the functional modifications resolved in both intact muscles and Triton-skinned muscle fibres and may provide a suitable paradigm for the aetiology of muscle symptoms associated with malaria.