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Sample records for muscone protects vertebral

  1. Synthesis of (R)- and (S)- muscone.

    PubMed

    Fujimoto, Satoko; Yoshikawa, Keisuke; Itoh, Masamichi; Kitaharai, Takeshi

    2002-06-01

    (R)-(-)-Muscone (3-methylcyclopentadecanone, 1) the key perfumery component isolated from the male musk deer, Moschus moschiferus,* was synthesized from the easily available chiral building block, (R)-3-tert-butoxycarbonyl-2-methylpropanoic acid (2), by employing ring-closing olefin metathesis (RCM). Antipode (+)-1 was also synthesized in a similar manner from tert-butyl (S)-3-methoxycarbonylbutanoate (10). *(a) Walbaum, H. J. J. Prakt. Chem., 73, 488 (1906); (b) Ruzicka, L., Further considerations on the constitution of muscone. Helv. Chim. Acta, 9, 715, 1008-1017 (1926).

  2. Patterns of Vertebrate Diversity and Protection in Brazil.

    PubMed

    Jenkins, Clinton N; Alves, Maria Alice S; Uezu, Alexandre; Vale, Mariana M

    2015-01-01

    Most conservation decisions take place at national or finer spatial scales. Providing useful information at such decision-making scales is essential for guiding the practice of conservation. Brazil is one of the world's megadiverse countries, and consequently decisions about conservation in the country have a disproportionate impact on the survival of global biodiversity. For three groups of terrestrial vertebrates (birds, mammals, and amphibians), we examined geographic patterns of diversity and protection in Brazil, including that of endemic, small-ranged, and threatened species. To understand potential limitations of the data, we also explored how spatial bias in collection localities may influence the perceived patterns of diversity. The highest overall species richness is in the Amazon and Atlantic Forests, while the Atlantic Forest dominates in terms of country endemics and small-ranged species. Globally threatened species do not present a consistent pattern. Patterns for birds were similar to overall species richness, with higher concentrations of threatened species in the Atlantic Forest, while mammals show a more generalized pattern across the country and a high concentration in the Amazon. Few amphibians are listed as threatened, mostly in the Atlantic Forest. Data deficient mammals occur across the country, concentrating in the Amazon and southeast Atlantic Forest, and there are no data deficient birds in Brazil. In contrast, nearly a third of amphibians are data deficient, widespread across the country, but with a high concentration in the far southeast. Spatial biases in species locality data, however, possibly influence the perceived patterns of biodiversity. Regions with low sampling density need more biological studies, as do the many data deficient species. All biomes except the Amazon have less than 3% of their area under full protection. Reassuringly though, rates of protection do correlate with higher biodiversity, including higher levels of

  3. Patterns of Vertebrate Diversity and Protection in Brazil

    PubMed Central

    Jenkins, Clinton N.; Alves, Maria Alice S.; Uezu, Alexandre; Vale, Mariana M.

    2015-01-01

    Most conservation decisions take place at national or finer spatial scales. Providing useful information at such decision-making scales is essential for guiding the practice of conservation. Brazil is one of the world’s megadiverse countries, and consequently decisions about conservation in the country have a disproportionate impact on the survival of global biodiversity. For three groups of terrestrial vertebrates (birds, mammals, and amphibians), we examined geographic patterns of diversity and protection in Brazil, including that of endemic, small-ranged, and threatened species. To understand potential limitations of the data, we also explored how spatial bias in collection localities may influence the perceived patterns of diversity. The highest overall species richness is in the Amazon and Atlantic Forests, while the Atlantic Forest dominates in terms of country endemics and small-ranged species. Globally threatened species do not present a consistent pattern. Patterns for birds were similar to overall species richness, with higher concentrations of threatened species in the Atlantic Forest, while mammals show a more generalized pattern across the country and a high concentration in the Amazon. Few amphibians are listed as threatened, mostly in the Atlantic Forest. Data deficient mammals occur across the country, concentrating in the Amazon and southeast Atlantic Forest, and there are no data deficient birds in Brazil. In contrast, nearly a third of amphibians are data deficient, widespread across the country, but with a high concentration in the far southeast. Spatial biases in species locality data, however, possibly influence the perceived patterns of biodiversity. Regions with low sampling density need more biological studies, as do the many data deficient species. All biomes except the Amazon have less than 3% of their area under full protection. Reassuringly though, rates of protection do correlate with higher biodiversity, including higher levels of

  4. Patterns of Vertebrate Diversity and Protection in Brazil.

    PubMed

    Jenkins, Clinton N; Alves, Maria Alice S; Uezu, Alexandre; Vale, Mariana M

    2015-01-01

    Most conservation decisions take place at national or finer spatial scales. Providing useful information at such decision-making scales is essential for guiding the practice of conservation. Brazil is one of the world's megadiverse countries, and consequently decisions about conservation in the country have a disproportionate impact on the survival of global biodiversity. For three groups of terrestrial vertebrates (birds, mammals, and amphibians), we examined geographic patterns of diversity and protection in Brazil, including that of endemic, small-ranged, and threatened species. To understand potential limitations of the data, we also explored how spatial bias in collection localities may influence the perceived patterns of diversity. The highest overall species richness is in the Amazon and Atlantic Forests, while the Atlantic Forest dominates in terms of country endemics and small-ranged species. Globally threatened species do not present a consistent pattern. Patterns for birds were similar to overall species richness, with higher concentrations of threatened species in the Atlantic Forest, while mammals show a more generalized pattern across the country and a high concentration in the Amazon. Few amphibians are listed as threatened, mostly in the Atlantic Forest. Data deficient mammals occur across the country, concentrating in the Amazon and southeast Atlantic Forest, and there are no data deficient birds in Brazil. In contrast, nearly a third of amphibians are data deficient, widespread across the country, but with a high concentration in the far southeast. Spatial biases in species locality data, however, possibly influence the perceived patterns of biodiversity. Regions with low sampling density need more biological studies, as do the many data deficient species. All biomes except the Amazon have less than 3% of their area under full protection. Reassuringly though, rates of protection do correlate with higher biodiversity, including higher levels of

  5. Synthesis of l-muscone by asymmetric methylation via enol esters.

    PubMed

    Matsuda, Hiroyuki; Tanaka, Shigeru; Yamamoto, Kenichi; Ishida, Kenya

    2008-06-01

    An effective synthetic route of l-muscone (1) by asymmetric methylation, followed by enolate-trapping to generate enol esters as intermediates, was described. Interestingly, the enol esters can be used as substrates for enzymatic optical resolution to improve optical purity. Additionally, several excellent new chiral ligands were discovered for asymmetric methylation of (E)-cyclopentadec-2-enone to produce l-muscone with high optical purity.

  6. Enhancing Effect of Borneol and Muscone on Geniposide Transport across the Human Nasal Epithelial Cell Monolayer

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Zhenzhen; Gong, Xin; Lu, Yang; Du, Shouying; Yang, Zhihui; Bai, Jie; Li, Pengyue; Wu, Huichao

    2014-01-01

    Geniposide is widely used in the treatment of cerebral ischemic stroke and cerebrovascular diseases for its anti-thrombotic and anti-inflammatory effects. Recent studies demonstrated that geniposide could be absorbed promptly and thoroughly by intranasal administration in mice and basically transported into the brain. Here, we explored its transport mechanism and the effect of borneol and muscone on its transport by human nasal epithelial cell (HNEC) monolayer. The cytotoxicity of geniposide, borneol, muscone and their combinations on HNECs was evaluated by the MTT assay. Transcellular transport of geniposide and the influence of borneol and muscone were studied using the HNEC monolayer. Immunostaining and transepithelial electrical resistance were measured to assess the integrity of the monolayer. The membrane fluidity of HNEC was evaluated by fluorescence recovery after photobleaching. Geniposide showed relatively poor absorption in the HNEC monolayer and it was not a P-gp substrate. Geniposide transport in both directions significantly increased when co-administrated with increasing concentrations of borneol and muscone. The enhancing effect of borneol and muscone on geniposide transport across the HNEC may be attributed to the significant enhancement on cell membrane fluidity, disassembly effect on tight junction integrity and the process was reversible. These results indicated that intranasal administration has good potential to treat cerebrovascular diseases. PMID:24992195

  7. Psychological effects of musky compounds: comparison of androstadienone with androstenol and muscone.

    PubMed

    Jacob, Suma; Garcia, Sheila; Hayreh, Davinder; McClintock, Martha K

    2002-11-01

    Previously, we have shown that delta4,16-androstadien-3-one modulates psychological state, reducing negative mood and increasing positive mood (Jacob and McClintock, 2000; Jacob et al., 2001a). In order to determine whether similar musky compounds also produce these effects, we compared the effects of androstadienone to those of androstenol and muscone, measuring the psychological states of 37 participants. Androstenol and muscone were chosen because they too have a musky odor at high concentrations, while androstenol is a steroid like androstadienone and muscone is not. In a controlled laboratory setting, we conducted a double-blind, within-subject, repeated-measures experiment counterbalanced for order of presentation. Under each participant's nose, a nanomolar amount of each compound was presented, masked by clove oil to minimize perceptible olfactory differences. Participants completed a baseline psychological battery and twice again at 25-min intervals after exposure. Androstadienone's effects on psychological state were unique in comparison with those of androstenol and with muscone. Exposure through passive inhalation, rather than dermal contact, was sufficient for these effects. Although this is additional evidence that androstadienone may be a pheromone, it is yet to be determined whether humans exude concentrations into the air adequate for social communication or process this chemical information within natural social contexts.

  8. Psychological effects of musky compounds: comparison of androstadienone with androstenol and muscone.

    PubMed

    Jacob, Suma; Garcia, Sheila; Hayreh, Davinder; McClintock, Martha K

    2002-11-01

    Previously, we have shown that delta4,16-androstadien-3-one modulates psychological state, reducing negative mood and increasing positive mood (Jacob and McClintock, 2000; Jacob et al., 2001a). In order to determine whether similar musky compounds also produce these effects, we compared the effects of androstadienone to those of androstenol and muscone, measuring the psychological states of 37 participants. Androstenol and muscone were chosen because they too have a musky odor at high concentrations, while androstenol is a steroid like androstadienone and muscone is not. In a controlled laboratory setting, we conducted a double-blind, within-subject, repeated-measures experiment counterbalanced for order of presentation. Under each participant's nose, a nanomolar amount of each compound was presented, masked by clove oil to minimize perceptible olfactory differences. Participants completed a baseline psychological battery and twice again at 25-min intervals after exposure. Androstadienone's effects on psychological state were unique in comparison with those of androstenol and with muscone. Exposure through passive inhalation, rather than dermal contact, was sufficient for these effects. Although this is additional evidence that androstadienone may be a pheromone, it is yet to be determined whether humans exude concentrations into the air adequate for social communication or process this chemical information within natural social contexts. PMID:12460587

  9. In vivo identification of eugenol-responsive and muscone-responsive mouse odorant receptors.

    PubMed

    McClintock, Timothy S; Adipietro, Kaylin; Titlow, William B; Breheny, Patrick; Walz, Andreas; Mombaerts, Peter; Matsunami, Hiroaki

    2014-11-19

    Our understanding of mammalian olfactory coding has been impeded by the paucity of information about the odorant receptors (ORs) that respond to a given odorant ligand in awake, freely behaving animals. Identifying the ORs that respond in vivo to a given odorant ligand from among the ∼1100 ORs in mice is intrinsically challenging but critical for our understanding of olfactory coding at the periphery. Here, we report an in vivo assay that is based on a novel gene-targeted mouse strain, S100a5-tauGFP, in which a fluorescent reporter selectively marks olfactory sensory neurons that have been activated recently in vivo. Because each olfactory sensory neuron expresses a single OR gene, multiple ORs responding to a given odorant ligand can be identified simultaneously by capturing the population of activated olfactory sensory neurons and using expression profiling methods to screen the repertoire of mouse OR genes. We used this in vivo assay to re-identify known eugenol- and muscone-responsive mouse ORs. We identified additional ORs responsive to eugenol or muscone. Heterologous expression assays confirmed nine eugenol-responsive ORs (Olfr73, Olfr178, Olfr432, Olfr610, Olfr958, Olfr960, Olfr961, Olfr913, and Olfr1234) and four muscone-responsive ORs (Olfr74, Olfr235, Olfr816, and Olfr1440). We found that the human ortholog of Olfr235 and Olfr1440 responds to macrocyclic ketone and lactone musk odorants but not to polycyclic musk odorants or a macrocyclic diester musk odorant. This novel assay, called the Kentucky in vivo odorant ligand-receptor assay, should facilitate the in vivo identification of mouse ORs for a given odorant ligand of interest.

  10. Spatial mismatch of phylogenetic diversity across three vertebrate groups and protected areas in Europe

    PubMed Central

    Zupan, Laure; Cabeza, Mar; Maiorano, Luigi; Roquet, Cristina; Devictor, Vincent; Lavergne, Sébastien; Mouillot, David; Mouquet, Nicolas; Renaud, Julien; Thuiller, Wilfried

    2014-01-01

    Aim We investigate patterns of phylogenetic diversity in relation to species diversity for European birds, mammals and amphibians, to evaluate their congruence and highlight areas of particular evolutionary history. We estimate the extent to which the European network of protected areas (PAs) network retains interesting evolutionary history areas for the three groups separately and simultaneously. Location Europe Methods Phylogenetic (QEPD) and species diversity (SD) were estimated using the Rao’s quadratic entropy at 10′ resolution. We determined the regional relationship between QEPD and SD for each taxa with a spatial regression model and used the tails of the residuals (QERES) distribution to identify areas of higher and lower QEPD than predicted. Spatial congruence of biodiversity between groups was assessed with Pearson’s correlation. A simple classification scheme allowed building a convergence map where a convergent pixel equalled to a QERES value of the same sign for the 3 groups. This convergence map was overlaid to the current PAs network to estimate the level of protection in convergent pixels and compared it to a null expectation built on 1000 randomization of PAs over the landscape. Results QERES patterns across vertebrates show a strong spatial mismatch highlighting different evolutionary histories. Convergent areas represent only 2.7% of the Western Palearctic, with only 8.4% of these areas being covered by the current PAs network while a random distribution would retain 10.4% of them. QERES are unequally represented within PAs: areas with higher QEPD than predicted are better covered than expected, while low QEPD areas are undersampled. Main conclusions Patterns of diversity strongly diverge between groups of vertebrates in Europe. Although Europe has the world’s most extensive PAs network, evolutionary history of terrestrial vertebrates is unequally protected. The challenge is now to reconcile effective conservation planning with a

  11. Survey of protected terrestrial vertebrates on the Oak Ridge Reservation 1995 annual progress report

    SciTech Connect

    Vail, E.R.; Mitchell, J.M.; Webb, J.W.; King, A.L.; Hamlett, P.A.

    1995-11-01

    This progress report discusses surveys of protected terrestrial vertebrates on the Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR) from October 1994 through September 1995. These surveys are important to help avoid or minimize potential impacts of projects on the ORR to species listed as threatened, endangered, or in need of management by the US Fish and Wildlife Service and the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency. Currently, there are 69 species of federally or state-listed terrestrial vertebrates that may occur in Tennessee. Not all of these are expected to occur on the ORR, nor do resources permit comprehensive sampling for all of them over the entire ORR. To effectively organize sampling efforts, listed animal species that might be present were targeted using a prioritization system based on historical and recent sightings, species distributions, literature reviews, and personal communications. Sampling was conducted during the time of the year when each targeted species would most likely be encountered. Several trapping and surveying methods were used, including pitfall traps, Sherman traps, seining, artificial covers, and cave and avian surveys.

  12. China's endemic vertebrates sheltering under the protective umbrella of the giant panda.

    PubMed

    Li, Binbin V; Pimm, Stuart L

    2016-04-01

    The giant panda attracts disproportionate conservation resources. How well does this emphasis protect other endemic species? Detailed data on geographical ranges are not available for plants or invertebrates, so we restrict our analyses to 3 vertebrate taxa: birds, mammals, and amphibians. There are gaps in their protection, and we recommend practical actions to fill them. We identified patterns of species richness, then identified which species are endemic to China, and then which, like the panda, live in forests. After refining each species' range by its known elevational range and remaining forest habitats as determined from remote sensing, we identified the top 5% richest areas as the centers of endemism. Southern mountains, especially the eastern Hengduan Mountains, were centers for all 3 taxa. Over 96% of the panda habitat overlapped the endemic centers. Thus, investing in almost any panda habitat will benefit many other endemics. Existing panda national nature reserves cover all but one of the endemic species that overlap with the panda's distribution. Of particular interest are 14 mammal, 20 bird, and 82 amphibian species that are inadequately protected. Most of these species the International Union for Conservation of Nature currently deems threatened. But 7 mammal, 3 bird, and 20 amphibian species are currently nonthreatened, yet their geographical ranges are <20,000 km(2) after accounting for elevational restriction and remaining habitats. These species concentrate mainly in Sichuan, Yunnan, Nan Mountains, and Hainan. There is a high concentration in the east Daxiang and Xiaoxiang Mountains of Sichuan, where pandas are absent and where there are no national nature reserves. The others concentrate in Yunnan, Nan Mountains, and Hainan. Here, 10 prefectures might establish new protected areas or upgrade local nature reserves to national status.

  13. China's endemic vertebrates sheltering under the protective umbrella of the giant panda.

    PubMed

    Li, Binbin V; Pimm, Stuart L

    2016-04-01

    The giant panda attracts disproportionate conservation resources. How well does this emphasis protect other endemic species? Detailed data on geographical ranges are not available for plants or invertebrates, so we restrict our analyses to 3 vertebrate taxa: birds, mammals, and amphibians. There are gaps in their protection, and we recommend practical actions to fill them. We identified patterns of species richness, then identified which species are endemic to China, and then which, like the panda, live in forests. After refining each species' range by its known elevational range and remaining forest habitats as determined from remote sensing, we identified the top 5% richest areas as the centers of endemism. Southern mountains, especially the eastern Hengduan Mountains, were centers for all 3 taxa. Over 96% of the panda habitat overlapped the endemic centers. Thus, investing in almost any panda habitat will benefit many other endemics. Existing panda national nature reserves cover all but one of the endemic species that overlap with the panda's distribution. Of particular interest are 14 mammal, 20 bird, and 82 amphibian species that are inadequately protected. Most of these species the International Union for Conservation of Nature currently deems threatened. But 7 mammal, 3 bird, and 20 amphibian species are currently nonthreatened, yet their geographical ranges are <20,000 km(2) after accounting for elevational restriction and remaining habitats. These species concentrate mainly in Sichuan, Yunnan, Nan Mountains, and Hainan. There is a high concentration in the east Daxiang and Xiaoxiang Mountains of Sichuan, where pandas are absent and where there are no national nature reserves. The others concentrate in Yunnan, Nan Mountains, and Hainan. Here, 10 prefectures might establish new protected areas or upgrade local nature reserves to national status. PMID:26332026

  14. Survey of protected terrestrial vertebrates on the Oak Ridge Reservation. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Mitchell, J.M.; Vail, E.R.; Webb, J.W.; Evans, J.W.

    1996-07-01

    This document is the final report on surveys of protected terrestrial vertebrates on the Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR) conducted from October 1994 through May 1996. The surveys were undertaken to gain information that could help prevent or minimize the potential impacts of projects on the ORR to species listed by the state or federal government as endangered, threatened, or in need of management; federal species of concern were also included. The results of the survey will assist in the effective management of the natural resources of the ORR. Currently, there are 69 species of federal or state listed terrestrial vertebrates (20 reptiles and amphibians, 20 mammals, and 29 birds) that may occur in Tennessee. Listed animal species that might be present on the ORR were targeted for survey using a prioritization system based on historical and recent sightings, known species distributions, presence of suitable habitat, literature reviews, and personal communications. Survey methods included trapping, seining, monitoring of artificial covers, active searching, and avian surveys. Surveys were conducted during the time of year when each targeted species was most likely to be encountered. The surveys confirmed the presence of 20 threatened and endangered species on the ORR. This report also includes some ancillary information. Records are provided for nonlisted species (44 species of reptiles and amphibians, 155 species of birds, and 28 species of mammals). Categorization of survey sites into 1 or more of 19 habitat types, which are briefly described, is presented. Notes are summarized on the occurrence of threatened and endangered species on the ORR. Finally, this report also lists threatened and endangered species not found that might be located by additional surveys, recommends three survey areas for natural-area status due to wildlife value, and suggests several avenues for future work.

  15. Survey of protected terrestrial vertebrates on the Oak Ridge Reservation. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Mitchell, J.M.; Vail, E.R.; Webb, J.W.; King, A.L.; Hamlett, P.A.

    1996-05-01

    Surveys of protected terrestrial vertebrates on the Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR) were conducted from October 1994 through May 1996. The surveys were undertaken to help avoid or minimize the potential impacts of projects on the ORR to species listed by the state or federal government as endangered, threatened, or in need-of-management; federal species of concern were included. Results of the survey will also assist in effectively managing the ORR. Currently, there are 69 species of federal- or state-listed terrestrial vertebrates (20 reptiles and amphibians, 20 mammals, and 29 birds) that may occur in Tennessee. Listed animal species that might be present on the ORR were targeted for survey using a prioritization system based on historical and recent sightings, known species distributions, presence of suitable habitat, literature reviews, and personal communications. Survey methods included trapping, seining, monitoring artificial covers, active searching, and avian surveys. Surveys were conducted during the time of year when each targeted species was most likely to be encountered. The report also includes ancillary information. Records are provided for nonlisted species (44 species of reptiles and amphibians, 155 species of birds, and 28 species of mammals). Categorization of survey sites into 1 or more of 19 habitat types, which are briefly described, is presented. Notes are summarized on the occurrence of threatened and endangered species on the ORR. The report also lists threatened and endangered species not found that might be located by additional surveys, recommends three survey areas for natural-area status due to wildlife value, and suggests several avenues for future work.

  16. Insecticidal and vertebrate toxicity associated with ethnobotanicals used as post-harvest protectants in Ghana.

    PubMed

    Belmain, S R; Neal, G E; Ray, D E; Golob, P

    2001-03-01

    Six plant species (Cassia sophera, Chamaecrista nigricans, Mitragyna inermis, Ocimum americanum, Securidaca longepedunculata and Synedrella nodiflora) traditionally used in Ghana to control insect pests of stored grain and legumes were screened in the laboratory at three concentrations (0.5, 1 and 5%, w/w) against four common storage pests (Rhyzopertha dominica, Callosobruchus maculatus, Sitophilus zeamais and Prostephanus truncatus). All the plants showed some ability to control all or some of the test insect species. Levels of efficacy varied according to test concentration with the highest concentration tested providing the best control. The S. longepedunculata plant induced the highest percent mortality and was the best at reducing emergence of the F(1) generation. The six plants were also incorporated into standard rat diet at two concentrations (1 and 5%, w/w) and fed to rats over a 6-week period to assess potential deleterious effects against vertebrates. None of the plants demonstrated any neurotoxicological or neurobehavioural effects to the rats over the course of the trial. However, S. longepedunculata and C. nigricans caused a significant reduction in rat growth rate when incorporated at 5% in the diet, induced cell hyperplasia in the liver, and reduced the mean weight of the liver and kidneys, compared to the control group of rats. Kidney pathology was affected only by the 5% concentration of S. longepedunculata which caused a reduced accumulation of alpha2mu-globulin. The implications of these results are discussed in the context of farmer usage of insecticidal plants for stored product protection. PMID:11278061

  17. Use of survey data to develop sediment criteria for protecting aquatic vertebrates in mountain streams

    EPA Science Inventory

    We examined the relationship of aquatic vertebrate taxa abundances and an index of biotic integrity (IBI) to reachwide measures of areal percent streambed surficial fines (≤ 0.06 mm) and sand and fines (≤ 2 mm), based on data collected from 557 wadeable streams in the Western Mou...

  18. Influence of borneol and muscone on geniposide transport through MDCK and MDCK-MDR1 cells as blood-brain barrier in vitro model.

    PubMed

    Chen, Zhen-Zhen; Lu, Yang; Du, Shou-Ying; Shang, Ke-Xin; Cai, Cheng-Bo

    2013-11-01

    The objective of this study was (1) to characterize geniposide transport through MDCK and MDCK-MDR1 cell lines to confirm its transport mechanism and (2) to evaluate the effect of borneol and muscone as enhancers of geniposide transport in the BBB models so as to explore the enhancement mechanism. Transport studies of geniposide were performed in both directions, from apical to basolateral and from basolateral to apical sides. Drug concentrations were analyzed by HPLC. Geniposide showed relatively poor absorption in MDCK and MDCK-MDR1 cells, apparent permeability coefficients ranging from 0.323×10(-6) to 0.422×10(-6) cm/s. The in vitro experiments showed that geniposide transport in both directions was not concentration dependent and saturable, indicating purely passive diffusion. The efflux ratio of geniposide was less than 2 in the two cell models, which suggested that geniposide was not P-gp substrates. Geniposide transport in both directions significantly increased when co-administrated with increasing concentrations of borneol and muscone. Actin staining results indicated that borneol and muscone increased geniposide transport in the BBB models may attribute to disassembly effect on tight junction integrity.

  19. On how much biodiversity is covered in Europe by national protected areas and by the Natura 2000 network: insights from terrestrial vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Maiorano, L; Amori, G; Montemaggiori, A; Rondinini, C; Santini, L; Saura, S; Boitani, L

    2015-08-01

    The European Union has made extensive biodiversity conservation efforts with the Habitats and Birds Directives and with the establishment of the Natura 2000 network of protected areas, one of the largest networks of conservation areas worldwide. We performed a gap analysis of the entire Natura 2000 system plus national protected areas and all terrestrial vertebrates (freshwater fish excluded). We also evaluated the level of connectivity of both systems, providing therefore a first estimate of the functionality of the Natura 2000 system as an effective network of protected areas. Together national protected areas and the Natura 2000 network covered more than one-third of the European Union. National protected areas did not offer protection to 13 total gap species (i.e., species not covered by any protected area) or to almost 300 partial gap species (i.e., species whose representation target is not met). Together the Natura 2000 network and national protected areas left 1 total gap species and 121 partial gap species unprotected. The terrestrial vertebrates listed in the Habitats and Birds Directives were relatively well covered (especially birds), and overall connectivity was improved considerably by Natura 2000 sites that act as stepping stones between national protected areas. Overall, we found that the Natura 2000 network represents at continental level an important network of protected areas that acts as a good complement to existing national protected areas. However, a number of problems remain that are mainly linked to the criteria used to list the species in the Habitats and Birds Directives. The European Commission initiated in 2014 a process aimed at assessing the importance of the Birds and Habitats Directives for biodiversity conservation. Our results contribute to this assessment and suggest the system is largely effective for terrestrial vertebrates but would benefit from further updating of the species lists and field management.

  20. [Construction of an indicator system for evaluating the protection efficacy of national nature reserves in China: A case study on terrestrial vertebrates (excluding migratory birds)].

    PubMed

    Yan, Yu-ying; Yang, Dao-de; Deng, Jiao; Zhang, Zhi-qiang; Zhou, Xian-yan; Wang, Wei; Li, Jun-sheng

    2015-05-01

    The protection efficacy of nature reserves is a key element in achieving targets of biodiversity conservation. It is therefore very important to develop a scientific, systematic, and accurate index system for evaluating the protection efficacy of national nature reserves in China. Using methods of frequency statistics, expert consultation, analytic hierarchy process, and demonstration survey, we present a novel index system for evaluating the protection efficacy of Chinese national nature reserves for terrestrial vertebrates (excluding migratory birds) over a 10-year period. The indicator system included one target layer, two system layers, nine factor layers, and forty index layers. The system layer included ecological effectiveness evaluation (with a score of 60%) and management effectiveness evaluation (score of 40%). The ecological effectiveness evaluation was a comprehensive, dynamic evaluation of the target species, population, habitat, and ecological system. The management effectiveness evaluation was focused on the effectiveness of patrol and monitoring. The additional part aimed to analyze the impact of humans on the target species, population and nature resources of the nature reserve. This study combined the ecological effectiveness evaluation and the management effectiveness evaluation for the first time, highlighted the importance of time and space changes, distinguished the influence of natural factors from human factors, and integrated them into the evaluation results. By emphasizing quantifiable indicators, this evaluation index system could vastly assist the protection of nature reserves by improving management effectiveness, biodiversity conservation, and macroscopic decision-making.

  1. [Construction of an indicator system for evaluating the protection efficacy of national nature reserves in China: A case study on terrestrial vertebrates (excluding migratory birds)].

    PubMed

    Yan, Yu-ying; Yang, Dao-de; Deng, Jiao; Zhang, Zhi-qiang; Zhou, Xian-yan; Wang, Wei; Li, Jun-sheng

    2015-05-01

    The protection efficacy of nature reserves is a key element in achieving targets of biodiversity conservation. It is therefore very important to develop a scientific, systematic, and accurate index system for evaluating the protection efficacy of national nature reserves in China. Using methods of frequency statistics, expert consultation, analytic hierarchy process, and demonstration survey, we present a novel index system for evaluating the protection efficacy of Chinese national nature reserves for terrestrial vertebrates (excluding migratory birds) over a 10-year period. The indicator system included one target layer, two system layers, nine factor layers, and forty index layers. The system layer included ecological effectiveness evaluation (with a score of 60%) and management effectiveness evaluation (score of 40%). The ecological effectiveness evaluation was a comprehensive, dynamic evaluation of the target species, population, habitat, and ecological system. The management effectiveness evaluation was focused on the effectiveness of patrol and monitoring. The additional part aimed to analyze the impact of humans on the target species, population and nature resources of the nature reserve. This study combined the ecological effectiveness evaluation and the management effectiveness evaluation for the first time, highlighted the importance of time and space changes, distinguished the influence of natural factors from human factors, and integrated them into the evaluation results. By emphasizing quantifiable indicators, this evaluation index system could vastly assist the protection of nature reserves by improving management effectiveness, biodiversity conservation, and macroscopic decision-making. PMID:26571679

  2. Opportunistic Identification of Vertebral Fractures.

    PubMed

    Adams, Judith E

    2016-01-01

    Vertebral fractures are powerful predictors of future fracture, so, their identification is important to ensure that patients are commenced on appropriate bone protective or bone-enhancing therapy. Risk factors (e.g., low bone mineral density and increasing age) and symptoms (back pain, loss of height) may herald the presence of vertebral fractures, which are usually confirmed by performing spinal radiographs or, increasingly, using vertebral fracture assessment with dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry scanners. However, a large number (30% or more) of vertebral fractures are asymptomatic and do not come to clinical attention. There is, therefore, scope for opportunistic (fortuitous) identification of vertebral fractures from various imaging modalities (radiographs, computed tomography, magnetic resonance imaging, and radionuclide scans) performed for other clinical indications and which include the spine in the field of view, with midline sagittal reformatted images from computed tomography having the greatest potential for such opportunistic detection. Numerous studies confirm this potential for identification but consistently find underreporting of vertebral fractures. So, a valuable opportunity to improve the management of patients at increased risk of future fracture is being squandered. Educational training programs for all clinicians and constant reiteration, stressing the importance of the accurate and clear reporting of vertebral fractures ("you only see what you look for"), can improve the situation, and automated computer-aided diagnostic tools also show promise to solve the problem of this underreporting of vertebral fractures.

  3. Opportunistic Identification of Vertebral Fractures.

    PubMed

    Adams, Judith E

    2016-01-01

    Vertebral fractures are powerful predictors of future fracture, so, their identification is important to ensure that patients are commenced on appropriate bone protective or bone-enhancing therapy. Risk factors (e.g., low bone mineral density and increasing age) and symptoms (back pain, loss of height) may herald the presence of vertebral fractures, which are usually confirmed by performing spinal radiographs or, increasingly, using vertebral fracture assessment with dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry scanners. However, a large number (30% or more) of vertebral fractures are asymptomatic and do not come to clinical attention. There is, therefore, scope for opportunistic (fortuitous) identification of vertebral fractures from various imaging modalities (radiographs, computed tomography, magnetic resonance imaging, and radionuclide scans) performed for other clinical indications and which include the spine in the field of view, with midline sagittal reformatted images from computed tomography having the greatest potential for such opportunistic detection. Numerous studies confirm this potential for identification but consistently find underreporting of vertebral fractures. So, a valuable opportunity to improve the management of patients at increased risk of future fracture is being squandered. Educational training programs for all clinicians and constant reiteration, stressing the importance of the accurate and clear reporting of vertebral fractures ("you only see what you look for"), can improve the situation, and automated computer-aided diagnostic tools also show promise to solve the problem of this underreporting of vertebral fractures. PMID:26412139

  4. Testing Skills in Vertebrates

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Funk, Mildred Sears; Tosto, Pat

    2007-01-01

    In this article, the authors present a project that gives students examples of basic skills that many vertebrate species develop as they grow and function in their ecosystem. These activities involve information gathering about surroundings, learning how to use objects, and tracking and searching skills. Different vertebrate species may acquire…

  5. Atypical vertebral Paget's disease.

    PubMed

    Beaudouin, Constance; Dohan, Anthony; Nasrallah, Toufic; Parlier, Caroline; Touraine, Sébastien; Ea, Korng; Kaci, Rachid; Laredo, Jean-Denis

    2014-07-01

    A 40-year-old Mauritanian man consulted for back pain. A computed tomography of the spine showed patchy sclerosis of the fifth and seventh thoracic vertebral bodies with normal neural arch of T5 and sclerosis and hypertrophy of the neural arch of T7, as well as diffuse sclerosis of the T11 vertebral body with a normal neural arch. At MRI, low signal-intensity on T1-weighted images and high signal-intensity on T2-weighted images involved the whole T5 and T7 vertebrae and the vertebral body of T11. Working diagnoses included metastatic disease and lymphoma, and a biopsy of T7 and then T11 was carried out. Both showed pathological findings very suggestive of Paget's disease. Since CT is usually the more specific radiological examination in vertebral Paget's disease, we thought it could be useful to report this atypical CT presentation (patchy sclerosis of the vertebral body without diffuse bone texture changes and isolated involvement of the vertebral body) of vertebral Paget's disease. PMID:24445956

  6. [Vertebral vacuum phenomena].

    PubMed

    Hamzé, B; Leaute, F; Wybier, M; Laredo, J D

    1995-01-01

    The spinal vacuum phenomenon is a collection of gas within the disk space, the vertebral body, the apophyseal joint or the spinal canal. The intradiscal vacuum phenomenon is frequently observed in degenerative disk disease and crystal-induced diskopathy. This has obvious significance to the radiologist, who, on observing a narrowed disk space or collapsed vertebral body, might otherwise consider infectious or neoplastic spondylitis, a likely possibility. The presence of vacuum phenomenon militates against the diagnosis of infection or tumor.

  7. Osteoporotic vertebral fractures redux.

    PubMed

    Lentle, B C; Gordon, P; Ward, L

    2008-02-01

    Osteoporosis remains an important cause of morbidity and mortality especially in the elderly. This fact is largely due to fractures of the proximal femur and spine. As recently recognized, vertebral fractures are as much a threat to health and longevity as fractures of the proximal femur. In recent decades, the development of tools to evaluate fracture risk as well as medications to treat osteoporosis has altered the management of people who are at fracture risk. At the same time identification and management procedures concerning spinal fracturing are not very clear. Besides there is not even clear consensus about what exactly constitutes a vertebral fracture, particularly those of minor degree. While height loss is a simple and valuable tool to detect vertebral fractures, it is neither sensitive nor specific enough to replace radiographs. Some 65% of fractures cause no symptoms. Often vertebral fractures are misdiagnosed, especially if they have occurred silently and if the opportunity for diagnosis arises fortuitously. It is to the patient's benefit that radiologists report and physicians identify vertebral fractures evident on a chest or other radiograph, no matter how incidental to the immediate clinical indication for the examination. Technological evolution now allows dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry machines to be used to take spine images while doing a densitometry. The images are adequate, even if not of high radiographic quality, and, more important, the patient undergoes a smaller radiation dose than with conventional spinal radiographs. Such technology may promote fracture recognition. The recognition of vertebral fractures, as well as the prevention and treatment of further fractures, will likely do much to reduce both the burden of osteoporosis-related morbidity and mortality, as well as fracture-related costs to healthcare systems.

  8. Management of osteoporotic vertebral fractures

    PubMed Central

    Dionyssiotis, Yannis

    2010-01-01

    Osteoporotic vertebral fractures are associated with considerable reduction of quality of life, morbidity, and mortality. The management of patients with vertebral fractures should include treatment for osteoporosis and measures to reduce pain and improve mobility. This article provides information for management and rehabilitation of vertebral fractures based on clinical experience and literature. PMID:20689689

  9. Head segmentation in vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Kuratani, Shigeru; Schilling, Thomas

    2008-01-01

    Classic theories of vertebrate head segmentation clearly exemplify the idealistic nature of comparative embryology prior to the 20th century. Comparative embryology aimed at recognizing the basic, primary structure that is shared by all vertebrates, either as an archetype or an ancestral developmental pattern. Modern evolutionary developmental (Evo-Devo) studies are also based on comparison, and therefore have a tendency to reduce complex embryonic anatomy into overly simplified patterns. Here again, a basic segmental plan for the head has been sought among chordates. We convened a symposium that brought together leading researchers dealing with this problem, in a number of different evolutionary and developmental contexts. Here we give an overview of the outcome and the status of the field in this modern era of Evo-Devo. We emphasize the fact that the head segmentation problem is not fully resolved, and we discuss new directions in the search for hints for a way out of this maze. PMID:20607135

  10. [Vertebral hydatidosis: case report].

    PubMed

    Varela, R; Santelices, J P; Cuzmar, D; Aldunate, J T; Plaza-Guzmán, N; Lizama-Calvo, P

    2015-01-01

    Hydatidosis caused by echinococcus granulosus may affect any organ in the body, with the lungs and the liver as the most commonly affected organs. Vertebral compromise resulting from echinococcus granulosus has a low prevalence and accounts for less than 1% of bone compromise. We report the case of a 50 year-old female who presented at the Trauma Service with progressive low back pain with 5 months of duration that irradiated to the right lower limb, and led to neurologic compromise of the limb. Imaging studies showed spondylodiscitis at T12-L1, confirmed by a biopsy. Treatment of this condition is both orthopedic and surgical. The recurrence rate is high, between 30 and 40%. The objective of describing this case is to propose the differential diagnosis of a vertebral mass of unknown origin and provide details as to how to manage this condition. PMID:27012085

  11. Viruses of lower vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Essbauer, S; Ahne, W

    2001-08-01

    Viruses of lower vertebrates recently became a field of interest to the public due to increasing epizootics and economic losses of poikilothermic animals. These were reported worldwide from both wildlife and collections of aquatic poikilothermic animals. Several RNA and DNA viruses infecting fish, amphibians and reptiles have been studied intensively during the last 20 years. Many of these viruses induce diseases resulting in important economic losses of lower vertebrates, especially in fish aquaculture. In addition, some of the DNA viruses seem to be emerging pathogens involved in the worldwide decline in wildlife. Irido-, herpes- and polyomavirus infections may be involved in the reduction in the numbers of endangered amphibian and reptile species. In this context the knowledge of several important RNA viruses such as orthomyxo-, paramyxo-, rhabdo-, retro-, corona-, calici-, toga-, picorna-, noda-, reo- and birnaviruses, and DNA viruses such as parvo-, irido-, herpes-, adeno-, polyoma- and poxviruses, is described in this review. PMID:11550762

  12. Management of Vertebral Stenosis Complicated by Presence of Acute Thrombus

    SciTech Connect

    Canyigit, Murat; Arat, Anil Cil, Barbaros E.; Sahin, Gurdal; Turkbey, Baris; Elibol, Bulent

    2007-04-15

    A 44-year-old male presented with multiple punctate acute infarcts of the vertebrobasilar circulation and a computed tomographic angiogram showing stenosis of the right vertebral origin. A digital subtraction angiogram demonstrated a new intraluminal filling defect at the origin of the stenotic vertebral artery where antegrade flow was maintained. This filling defect was accepted to be an acute thrombus of the vertebral origin, most likely due to rupture of a vulnerable plaque. The patient was treated with intravenous heparin. A control angiogram revealed dissolution of the acute thrombus under anticoagulation and the patient was treated with stenting with distal protection. Diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging demonstrated no additional acute ischemic lesions. We were unable to find a similar report in the English literature documenting successful management of an acute vertebral ostial thrombus with anticoagulation. Anticoagulation might be considered prior to endovascular treatment of symptomatic vertebral stenoses complicated by the presence of acute thrombus.

  13. Building the Vertebrate Spine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pourquié, Olivier

    2008-03-01

    The vertebrate body can be subdivided along the antero-posterior (AP) axis into repeated structures called segments. This periodic pattern is established during embryogenesis by the somitogenesis process. Somites are generated in a rhythmic fashion from the paraxial mesoderm and subsequently differentiate to give rise to the vertebrae and skeletal muscles of the body. Somite formation involves an oscillator-the segmentation clock-whose periodic signal is converted into the periodic array of somite boundaries. This clock drives the dynamic expression of cyclic genes in the presomitic mesoderm and requires Notch and Wnt signaling. Microarray studies of the mouse presomitic mesoderm transcriptome reveal that the segmentation clock drives the periodic expression of a large network of cyclic genes involved in cell signaling. Mutually exclusive activation of the Notch/FGF and Wnt pathways during each cycle suggests that coordinated regulation of these three pathways underlies the clock oscillator. In humans, mutations in the genes associated to the function of this oscillator such as Dll3 or Lunatic Fringe result in abnormal segmentation of the vertebral column such as those seen in congenital scoliosis. Whereas the segmentation clock is thought to set the pace of vertebrate segmentation, the translation of this pulsation into the reiterated arrangement of segment boundaries along the AP axis involves dynamic gradients of FGF and Wnt signaling. The FGF signaling gradient is established based on an unusual mechanism involving mRNA decay which provides an efficient means to couple the spatio-temporal activation of segmentation to the posterior elongation of the embryo. Another striking aspect of somite production is the strict bilateral symmetry of the process. Retinoic acid was shown to control aspects of this coordination by buffering destabilizing effects from the embryonic left-right machinery. Defects in this embryonic program controlling vertebral symmetry might lead

  14. Vertebral function during tadpole locomotion.

    PubMed

    Azizi, Emanuel; Landberg, Tobias; Wassersug, Richard J

    2007-01-01

    Most anuran larvae show large lateral oscillations at both the tip of the tail and the snout while swimming in a straight line. Although the lateral deflections at the snout have long been considered an inefficient aspect of tadpole locomotion, a recent hydrodynamic model suggests that they may in fact help generate thrust. It is not clear though exactly where this bending takes place. The vertebral column is extremely short and seemingly inflexible in anurans, and any axial flexion that might occur there is hidden within the globose body of the tadpole. Here we test the hypothesis that lateral deflections of the snout correlate with bending of the vertebral column within the torso of tadpoles. To quantify vertebral curvature, three sonomicrometry crystals were surgically implanted along the dorsal midline in locations corresponding to the anterior, middle, and posterior region of the presacral vertebral column. Swimming trials were conducted in a flume where synchronized video recordings were collected in dorsal view. Our results confirm that cyclic lateral bending occurs along the vertebral column during swimming and indicate that vertebral curvature is temporally in phase with lateral oscillation of the snout. Lateral oscillation of the snout increased significantly with increasing vertebral curvature. Similarly, tail beat amplitude also increases significantly with increasing vertebral curvature. Our results suggest that cyclic lateral flexion of the vertebral column, activated by the axial muscle within the torso of tadpoles contributes to snout oscillations and the generation of thrust during undulatory swimming in anuran larvae.

  15. Vertebral fracture classification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Bruijne, Marleen; Pettersen, Paola C.; Tankó, László B.; Nielsen, Mads

    2007-03-01

    A novel method for classification and quantification of vertebral fractures from X-ray images is presented. Using pairwise conditional shape models trained on a set of healthy spines, the most likely unfractured shape is estimated for each of the vertebrae in the image. The difference between the true shape and the reconstructed normal shape is an indicator for the shape abnormality. A statistical classification scheme with the two shapes as features is applied to detect, classify, and grade various types of deformities. In contrast with the current (semi-)quantitative grading strategies this method takes the full shape into account, it uses a patient-specific reference by combining population-based information on biological variation in vertebra shape and vertebra interrelations, and it provides a continuous measure of deformity. Good agreement with manual classification and grading is demonstrated on 204 lateral spine radiographs with in total 89 fractures.

  16. Chemical ecology of vertebrate carrion

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Vertebrate carrion is a nutrient-rich, ephemeral resource that is utilized by many different organisms ranging from vertebrate and invertebrate scavengers to microbes. The organisms that consume carrion play an important ecological role, as decomposition is vital to ecosystem function. Without the...

  17. Comparative anatomy: all vertebrates do have vertebrae.

    PubMed

    Janvier, Philippe

    2011-09-13

    In contrast to lampreys and jawed vertebrates, hagfishes were thought to lack vertebrae. Now, long overlooked vertebral rudiments have been analysed in hagfish, suggesting that vertebrae existed in the last common ancestor of all vertebrates.

  18. BK Channels in the Vertebrate Inner Ear.

    PubMed

    Pyott, S J; Duncan, R K

    2016-01-01

    The perception of complex acoustic stimuli begins with the deconstruction of sound into its frequency components. This spectral processing occurs first and foremost in the inner ear. In vertebrates, two very different strategies of frequency analysis have evolved. In nonmammalian vertebrates, the sensory hair cells of the inner ear are intrinsically electrically tuned to a narrow band of acoustic frequencies. This electrical tuning relies on the interplay between BK channels and voltage-gated calcium channels. Systematic variations in BK channel density and kinetics establish a gradient in electrical resonance that enables the coding of a broad range of acoustic frequencies. In contrast, mammalian hair cells are extrinsically tuned by mechanical properties of the cochlear duct. Even so, mammalian hair cells also express BK channels. These BK channels play critical roles in various aspects of mammalian auditory signaling, from developmental maturation to protection against acoustic trauma. This review summarizes the anatomical localization, biophysical properties, and functional contributions of BK channels in vertebrate inner ears. Areas of future research, based on an updated understanding of the biology of both BK channels and the inner ear, are also highlighted. Investigation of BK channels in the inner ear continues to provide fertile research grounds for examining both BK channel biophysics and the molecular mechanisms underlying signal processing in the auditory periphery. PMID:27238269

  19. Molecular Evolutionary Analysis of β-Defensin Peptides in Vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Tu, Jianbo; Li, Diyan; Li, Qingqing; Zhang, Long; Zhu, Qing; Gaur, Uma; Fan, Xiaolan; Xu, Huailiang; Yao, Yongfang; Zhao, Xiaoling; Yang, Mingyao

    2015-01-01

    Vertebrate β-defensins comprise an important family of antimicrobial peptides that protect organisms from a diverse spectrum of bacteria, viruses, fungi, and protozoan parasites. Previous studies have shown a marked variation in the number of β-defensins among species, but the underlying reason is unclear. To address this question, we performed comprehensive computational searches to study the intact β-defensin genes from 29 vertebrates. Phylogenetic analysis of the β-defensin genes in vertebrates identified frequent changes in the number of β-defensin genes and multiple species-specific gene gains and losses that have been occurring throughout the evolution of vertebrates. The number of intact β-defensin genes varied from 1 in the western clawed frog to 20 in cattle, with numerous expansions and contractions of the gene family throughout vertebrates, especially among tetrapods. The β-defensin gene number in a species is relevant to the ever-changing microbial challenges from the environment that they inhabit. Selection pressure analysis shows there exist three amino acid sites under significant positive selection. Protein structural characteristics analysis suggests that structural diversity determines the diverse functions of β-defensins. Our study provides a new perspective on the relationships among vertebrate β-defensin gene repertoires and different survival circumstances, which helps explain how β-defensins have evolved. PMID:26056425

  20. Molecular Evolutionary Analysis of β-Defensin Peptides in Vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Tu, Jianbo; Li, Diyan; Li, Qingqing; Zhang, Long; Zhu, Qing; Gaur, Uma; Fan, Xiaolan; Xu, Huailiang; Yao, Yongfang; Zhao, Xiaoling; Yang, Mingyao

    2015-01-01

    Vertebrate β-defensins comprise an important family of antimicrobial peptides that protect organisms from a diverse spectrum of bacteria, viruses, fungi, and protozoan parasites. Previous studies have shown a marked variation in the number of β-defensins among species, but the underlying reason is unclear. To address this question, we performed comprehensive computational searches to study the intact β-defensin genes from 29 vertebrates. Phylogenetic analysis of the β-defensin genes in vertebrates identified frequent changes in the number of β-defensin genes and multiple species-specific gene gains and losses that have been occurring throughout the evolution of vertebrates. The number of intact β-defensin genes varied from 1 in the western clawed frog to 20 in cattle, with numerous expansions and contractions of the gene family throughout vertebrates, especially among tetrapods. The β-defensin gene number in a species is relevant to the ever-changing microbial challenges from the environment that they inhabit. Selection pressure analysis shows there exist three amino acid sites under significant positive selection. Protein structural characteristics analysis suggests that structural diversity determines the diverse functions of β-defensins. Our study provides a new perspective on the relationships among vertebrate β-defensin gene repertoires and different survival circumstances, which helps explain how β-defensins have evolved. PMID:26056425

  1. Charcot Arthropathy of the Lumbosacral Spine Mimicking a Vertebral Tumor after Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Son, Soo-Bum; Kim, Eun-Sang; Eoh, Whan

    2013-01-01

    Charcot spinal arthropathy is a rare, progressive type of vertebral joint degeneration that occurs in the setting of any preexisting condition characterized by decreased afferent innervation to the extent that normal protective joint sensation in the vertebral column is impaired. The authors report on a case of Charcot arthropathy of the lower lumbar spine mimicking a spinal tumor following cervical cord injury. PMID:24527202

  2. Lymphatic regulation in nonmammalian vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Hedrick, Michael S; Hillman, Stanley S; Drewes, Robert C; Withers, Philip C

    2013-08-01

    All vertebrate animals share in common the production of lymph through net capillary filtration from their closed circulatory system into their tissues. The balance of forces responsible for net capillary filtration and lymph formation is described by the Starling equation, but additional factors such as vascular and interstitial compliance, which vary markedly among vertebrates, also have a significant impact on rates of lymph formation. Why vertebrates show extreme variability in rates of lymph formation and how nonmammalian vertebrates maintain plasma volume homeostasis is unclear. This gap hampers our understanding of the evolution of the lymphatic system and its interaction with the cardiovascular system. The evolutionary origin of the vertebrate lymphatic system is not clear, but recent advances suggest common developmental factors for lymphangiogenesis in teleost fishes, amphibians, and mammals with some significant changes in the water-land transition. The lymphatic system of anuran amphibians is characterized by large lymphatic sacs and two pairs of lymph hearts that return lymph into the venous circulation but no lymph vessels per se. The lymphatic systems of reptiles and some birds have lymph hearts, and both groups have extensive lymph vessels, but their functional role in both lymph movement and plasma volume homeostasis is almost completely unknown. The purpose of this review is to present an evolutionary perspective in how different vertebrates have solved the common problem of the inevitable formation of lymph from their closed circulatory systems and to point out the many gaps in our knowledge of this evolutionary progression.

  3. Lymphatic regulation in nonmammalian vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Hedrick, Michael S; Hillman, Stanley S; Drewes, Robert C; Withers, Philip C

    2013-08-01

    All vertebrate animals share in common the production of lymph through net capillary filtration from their closed circulatory system into their tissues. The balance of forces responsible for net capillary filtration and lymph formation is described by the Starling equation, but additional factors such as vascular and interstitial compliance, which vary markedly among vertebrates, also have a significant impact on rates of lymph formation. Why vertebrates show extreme variability in rates of lymph formation and how nonmammalian vertebrates maintain plasma volume homeostasis is unclear. This gap hampers our understanding of the evolution of the lymphatic system and its interaction with the cardiovascular system. The evolutionary origin of the vertebrate lymphatic system is not clear, but recent advances suggest common developmental factors for lymphangiogenesis in teleost fishes, amphibians, and mammals with some significant changes in the water-land transition. The lymphatic system of anuran amphibians is characterized by large lymphatic sacs and two pairs of lymph hearts that return lymph into the venous circulation but no lymph vessels per se. The lymphatic systems of reptiles and some birds have lymph hearts, and both groups have extensive lymph vessels, but their functional role in both lymph movement and plasma volume homeostasis is almost completely unknown. The purpose of this review is to present an evolutionary perspective in how different vertebrates have solved the common problem of the inevitable formation of lymph from their closed circulatory systems and to point out the many gaps in our knowledge of this evolutionary progression. PMID:23640588

  4. Evolution of vertebrate opioid receptors

    PubMed Central

    Dreborg, Susanne; Sundström, Görel; Larsson, Tomas A.; Larhammar, Dan

    2008-01-01

    The opioid peptides and receptors have prominent roles in pain transmission and reward mechanisms in mammals. The evolution of the opioid receptors has so far been little studied, with only a few reports on species other than tetrapods. We have investigated species representing a broader range of vertebrates and found that the four opioid receptor types (delta, kappa, mu, and NOP) are present in most of the species. The gene relationships were deduced by using both phylogenetic analyses and chromosomal location relative to 20 neighboring gene families in databases of assembled genomes. The combined results show that the vertebrate opioid receptor gene family arose by quadruplication of a large chromosomal block containing at least 14 other gene families. The quadruplication seems to coincide with, and, therefore, probably resulted from, the two proposed genome duplications in early vertebrate evolution. We conclude that the quartet of opioid receptors was already present at the origin of jawed vertebrates ≈450 million years ago. A few additional opioid receptor gene duplications have occurred in bony fishes. Interestingly, the ancestral receptor gene duplications coincide with the origin of the four opioid peptide precursor genes. Thus, the complete vertebrate opioid system was already established in the first jawed vertebrates. PMID:18832151

  5. Global patterns of terrestrial vertebrate diversity and conservation.

    PubMed

    Jenkins, Clinton N; Pimm, Stuart L; Joppa, Lucas N

    2013-07-01

    Identifying priority areas for biodiversity is essential for directing conservation resources. Fundamentally, we must know where individual species live, which ones are vulnerable, where human actions threaten them, and their levels of protection. As conservation knowledge and threats change, we must reevaluate priorities. We mapped priority areas for vertebrates using newly updated data on >21,000 species of mammals, amphibians, and birds. For each taxon, we identified centers of richness for all species, small-ranged species, and threatened species listed with the International Union for the Conservation of Nature. Importantly, all analyses were at a spatial grain of 10 × 10 km, 100 times finer than previous assessments. This fine scale is a significant methodological improvement, because it brings mapping to scales comparable with regional decisions on where to place protected areas. We also mapped recent species discoveries, because they suggest where as-yet-unknown species might be living. To assess the protection of the priority areas, we calculated the percentage of priority areas within protected areas using the latest data from the World Database of Protected Areas, providing a snapshot of how well the planet's protected area system encompasses vertebrate biodiversity. Although the priority areas do have more protection than the global average, the level of protection still is insufficient given the importance of these areas for preventing vertebrate extinctions. We also found substantial differences between our identified vertebrate priorities and the leading map of global conservation priorities, the biodiversity hotspots. Our findings suggest a need to reassess the global allocation of conservation resources to reflect today's improved knowledge of biodiversity and conservation.

  6. Clinical consequences of vertebral fractures.

    PubMed

    Ross, P D

    1997-08-18

    People with vertebral fractures have greater pain, disability, and healthcare utilization, on average, than those without fractures. Most studies of acute pain and disability have been limited to patients with clinically diagnosed fractures (a subset of all symptomatic patients), representing about one third of all patients with fractures identified radiographically. Acute symptoms vary widely. Some patients experience intolerable pain that can be completely debilitating for several weeks or months, whereas about half of all patients with radiographically identified fractures report having had no symptoms. The reasons for this variability are unknown. Chronic pain and disability among patients with vertebral fractures are significantly greater on average than among people without fractures, even after adjusting for comorbid conditions that are common among the elderly. Similar to acute symptoms, chronic symptoms vary widely and often persist for at least several years. The risk of pain and disability increases progressively with the number and severity of vertebral deformities: the risk is multiplied several times with each additional fracture. On average, physical function is impaired among people with vertebral fractures, whether or not they currently report back pain. Declines in physical function and changes in appearance contribute to social isolation and loss of self-esteem, impairing quality of life. The cumulative impact of vertebral fractures on quality of life may rival that of hip fractures because hip fractures are less frequent and occur later in life. As many as 40% of symptomatic vertebral fractures are initially misdiagnosed, signaling a need for greater awareness among physicians and patients. Prevention of initial vertebral fractures should be actively encouraged; even if the initial fracture is asymptomatic, it indicates a greatly increased risk of subsequent fractures, pain, and physical impairment. PMID:9302895

  7. Medical treatment of vertebral osteoporosis.

    PubMed

    Lippuner, K

    2003-10-01

    Although osteoporosis is a systemic disease, vertebral fractures due to spinal bone loss are a frequent, sometimes early and often neglected complication of the disease, generally associated with considerable disability and pain. As osteoporotic vertebral fractures are an important predictor of future fracture risk, including at the hip, medical management is targeted at reducing fracture risk. A literature search for randomized, double-blind, prospective, controlled clinical studies addressing medical treatment possibilities of vertebral fractures in postmenopausal Caucasian women was performed on the leading medical databases. For each publication, the number of patients with at least one new vertebral fracture and the number of randomized patients by treatment arm was retrieved. The relative risk (RR) and the number needed to treat (NNT, i.e. the number of patients to be treated to avoid one radiological vertebral fracture over the duration of the study), together with the respective 95% confidence intervals (95%CI) were calculated for each study. Treatment of steroid-induced osteoporosis and treatment of osteoporosis in men were reviewed separately, based on the low number of publications available. Forty-five publications matched with the search criteria, allowing for analysis of 15 different substances tested regarding their anti-fracture efficacy at the vertebral level. Bisphosphonates, mainly alendronate and risedronate, were reported to have consistently reduced the risk of a vertebral fracture over up to 50 months of treatment in four (alendronate) and two (risedronate) publications. Raloxifene reduced vertebral fracture risk in one study over 36 months, which was confirmed by 48 months' follow-up data. Parathormone (PTH) showed a drastic reduction in vertebral fracture risk in early studies, while calcitonin may also be a treatment option to reduce fracture risk. For other substances published data are conflicting (calcitriol, fluoride) or insufficient

  8. Learning about Vertebrate Limb Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Liang, Jennifer O.; Noll, Matthew; Olsen, Shayna

    2014-01-01

    We have developed an upper-level undergraduate laboratory exercise that enables students to replicate a key experiment in developmental biology. In this exercise, students have the opportunity to observe live chick embryos and stain the apical ectodermal ridge, a key tissue required for development of the vertebrate limb. Impressively, every…

  9. Vertebral Augmentation: State of the Art

    PubMed Central

    Nabhane, Linda; Issa El Khoury, Fouad; Kreichati, Gaby; El Rachkidi, Rami

    2016-01-01

    Osteoporotic vertebral compression fractures (OVF) are an increasing public health problem. Cement augmentation (vertebroplasty of kyphoplasty) helps stabilize painful OVF refractory to medical treatment. This stabilization is thought to improve pain and functional outcome. Vertebroplasty consists of injecting cement into a fractured vertebra using a percutaneous transpedicular approach. Balloon kyphoplasty uses an inflatable balloon prior to injecting the cement. Although kyphoplasty is associated with significant improvement of local kyphosis and less cement leakage, this does not result in long-term clinical and functional improvement. Moreover, vertebroplasty is favored by some due to the high cost of kyphoplasty. The injection of cement increases the stiffness of the fracture vertebrae. This can lead, in theory, to adjacent OVF. However, many studies found no increase of subsequent fracture when comparing medical treatment to cement augmentation. Kyphoplasty can have a protective effect due to restoration of sagittal balance. PMID:27114782

  10. Morphological castes in a vertebrate.

    PubMed

    O'Riain, M J; Jarvis, J U; Alexander, R; Buffenstein, R; Peeters, C

    2000-11-21

    Morphological specialization for a specific role has, until now, been assumed to be restricted to social invertebrates. Herein we show that complete physical dimorphism has evolved between reproductives and helpers in the eusocial naked mole-rat. Dimorphism is a consequence of the lumbar vertebrae lengthening after the onset of reproduction in females. This is the only known example of morphological castes in a vertebrate and is distinct from continuous size variation between breeders and helpers in other species of cooperatively breeding vertebrates. The evolution of castes in a mammal and insects represents a striking example of convergent evolution for enhanced fecundity in societies characterized by high reproductive skew. Similarities in the selective environment between naked mole-rats and eusocial insect species highlight the selective conditions under which queen/worker castes are predicted to evolve in animal societies.

  11. Climate change and marine vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Sydeman, William J; Poloczanska, Elvira; Reed, Thomas E; Thompson, Sarah Ann

    2015-11-13

    Climate change impacts on vertebrates have consequences for marine ecosystem structures and services. We review marine fish, mammal, turtle, and seabird responses to climate change and discuss their potential for adaptation. Direct and indirect responses are demonstrated from every ocean. Because of variation in research foci, observed responses differ among taxonomic groups (redistributions for fish, phenology for seabirds). Mechanisms of change are (i) direct physiological responses and (ii) climate-mediated predator-prey interactions. Regional-scale variation in climate-demographic functions makes range-wide population dynamics challenging to predict. The nexus of metabolism relative to ecosystem productivity and food webs appears key to predicting future effects on marine vertebrates. Integration of climate, oceanographic, ecosystem, and population models that incorporate evolutionary processes is needed to prioritize the climate-related conservation needs for these species. PMID:26564847

  12. Climate change and marine vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Sydeman, William J; Poloczanska, Elvira; Reed, Thomas E; Thompson, Sarah Ann

    2015-11-13

    Climate change impacts on vertebrates have consequences for marine ecosystem structures and services. We review marine fish, mammal, turtle, and seabird responses to climate change and discuss their potential for adaptation. Direct and indirect responses are demonstrated from every ocean. Because of variation in research foci, observed responses differ among taxonomic groups (redistributions for fish, phenology for seabirds). Mechanisms of change are (i) direct physiological responses and (ii) climate-mediated predator-prey interactions. Regional-scale variation in climate-demographic functions makes range-wide population dynamics challenging to predict. The nexus of metabolism relative to ecosystem productivity and food webs appears key to predicting future effects on marine vertebrates. Integration of climate, oceanographic, ecosystem, and population models that incorporate evolutionary processes is needed to prioritize the climate-related conservation needs for these species.

  13. 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.

  14. Extraneural Glioblastoma Multiforme Vertebral Metastasis

    PubMed Central

    Goodwin, C. Rory; Liang, Lydia; Abu-Bonsrah, Nancy; Hdeib, Alia; Elder, Benjamin D.; Kosztowski, Thomas; Bettegowda, Chetan; Laterra, John; Burger, Peter; Sciubba, Daniel M.

    2016-01-01

    Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the most common malignant central nervous system tumor; however, extraneural metastasis is uncommon. Of those that metastasize extraneurally, metastases to the vertebral bodies represent a significant proportion. We present a review of 28 cases from the published literature of GBM metastasis to the vertebra. The mean age at presentation was 38.4 years with an average overall survival of 26 months. Patients were either asymptomatic with metastasis discovered at autopsy or presented with varying degrees of pain, weakness of the extremities, or other neurologic deficits. Of the cases that included the time to spinal metastasis, the average time was 26.4 months with a reported survival of 10 months after diagnosis of vertebral metastasis. A significant number of patients had no treatments for their spinal metastasis, although the intracranial lesions were treated extensively with surgery and/or adjuvant therapy. With increasing incremental gains in the survival of patients with GBM, clinicians will encounter patients with extracranial metastasis. As such, this review presents timely information concerning the presentation and outcomes of patients with vertebral metastasis. PMID:26704201

  15. 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. PMID:11324019

  16. Extraneural Glioblastoma Multiforme Vertebral Metastasis.

    PubMed

    Goodwin, C Rory; Liang, Lydia; Abu-Bonsrah, Nancy; Hdeib, Alia; Elder, Benjamin D; Kosztowski, Thomas; Bettegowda, Chetan; Laterra, John; Burger, Peter; Sciubba, Daniel M

    2016-05-01

    Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the most common malignant central nervous system tumor; however, extraneural metastasis is uncommon. Of those that metastasize extraneurally, metastases to the vertebral bodies represent a significant proportion. We present a review of 28 cases from the published literature of GBM metastasis to the vertebra. The mean age at presentation was 38.4 years with an average overall survival of 26 months. Patients were either asymptomatic with metastasis discovered at autopsy or presented with varying degrees of pain, weakness of the extremities, or other neurologic deficits. Of the cases that included the time to spinal metastasis, the average time was 26.4 months with a reported survival of 10 months after diagnosis of vertebral metastasis. A significant number of patients had no treatments for their spinal metastasis, although the intracranial lesions were treated extensively with surgery and/or adjuvant therapy. With increasing incremental gains in the survival of patients with GBM, clinicians will encounter patients with extracranial metastasis. As such, this review presents timely information concerning the presentation and outcomes of patients with vertebral metastasis. PMID:26704201

  17. Bilateral mechanical rotational vertebral artery occlusion.

    PubMed

    Dargon, Phong T; Liang, Conrad W; Kohal, Anmol; Dogan, Aclan; Barnwell, Stanley L; Landry, Gregory J

    2013-10-01

    Rotational vertebral artery occlusion, or bow hunter's stroke, is reversible, positional symptomatic vertebrobasilar ischemia. The typical mechanism of action is obstruction of a dominant vertebral artery with contralateral head rotation in the setting of baseline ipsilateral vertebral artery stenosis or occlusion. Here we present a rare case of mechanical occlusion of bilateral patent vertebral arteries manifesting as near syncope with rightward head rotation. Diagnostic cerebral angiography showed dynamic right C5 vertebral occlusion and left C2 vertebral occlusion. The patient underwent right C4/5 transverse process decompression. Postoperative angiogram showed patent flow through the right vertebral artery in neutral position and with head turn with resultant resolution of symptoms. PMID:23465174

  18. Evolution of the new vertebrate head by co-option of an ancient chordate skeletal tissue.

    PubMed

    Jandzik, David; Garnett, Aaron T; Square, Tyler A; Cattell, Maria V; Yu, Jr-Kai; Medeiros, Daniel M

    2015-02-26

    A defining feature of vertebrates (craniates) is a pronounced head that is supported and protected by a robust cellular endoskeleton. In the first vertebrates, this skeleton probably consisted of collagenous cellular cartilage, which forms the embryonic skeleton of all vertebrates and the adult skeleton of modern jawless and cartilaginous fish. In the head, most cellular cartilage is derived from a migratory cell population called the neural crest, which arises from the edges of the central nervous system. Because collagenous cellular cartilage and neural crest cells have not been described in invertebrates, the appearance of cellular cartilage derived from neural crest cells is considered a turning point in vertebrate evolution. Here we show that a tissue with many of the defining features of vertebrate cellular cartilage transiently forms in the larvae of the invertebrate chordate Branchiostoma floridae (Florida amphioxus). We also present evidence that during evolution, a key regulator of vertebrate cartilage development, SoxE, gained new cis-regulatory sequences that subsequently directed its novel expression in neural crest cells. Together, these results suggest that the origin of the vertebrate head skeleton did not depend on the evolution of a new skeletal tissue, as is commonly thought, but on the spread of this tissue throughout the head. We further propose that the evolution of cis-regulatory elements near an ancient regulator of cartilage differentiation was a major factor in the evolution of the vertebrate head skeleton.

  19. Evolution of the new vertebrate head by co-option of an ancient chordate skeletal tissue.

    PubMed

    Jandzik, David; Garnett, Aaron T; Square, Tyler A; Cattell, Maria V; Yu, Jr-Kai; Medeiros, Daniel M

    2015-02-26

    A defining feature of vertebrates (craniates) is a pronounced head that is supported and protected by a robust cellular endoskeleton. In the first vertebrates, this skeleton probably consisted of collagenous cellular cartilage, which forms the embryonic skeleton of all vertebrates and the adult skeleton of modern jawless and cartilaginous fish. In the head, most cellular cartilage is derived from a migratory cell population called the neural crest, which arises from the edges of the central nervous system. Because collagenous cellular cartilage and neural crest cells have not been described in invertebrates, the appearance of cellular cartilage derived from neural crest cells is considered a turning point in vertebrate evolution. Here we show that a tissue with many of the defining features of vertebrate cellular cartilage transiently forms in the larvae of the invertebrate chordate Branchiostoma floridae (Florida amphioxus). We also present evidence that during evolution, a key regulator of vertebrate cartilage development, SoxE, gained new cis-regulatory sequences that subsequently directed its novel expression in neural crest cells. Together, these results suggest that the origin of the vertebrate head skeleton did not depend on the evolution of a new skeletal tissue, as is commonly thought, but on the spread of this tissue throughout the head. We further propose that the evolution of cis-regulatory elements near an ancient regulator of cartilage differentiation was a major factor in the evolution of the vertebrate head skeleton. PMID:25487155

  20. Percutaneous vertebral augmentation and reconstruction with an intravertebral mesh and morcelized bone graft.

    PubMed

    Chiu, John C; Stechison, Michael T

    2005-01-01

    Percutaneous vertebral augmentation (VA) and reconstruction with intravertebral polyethylene mesh sac (OptiMesh) and morcelized bone graft provided a minimally invasive efficacious and controlled delivery mechanism to stabilize and treat painful osteoporotic, traumatic and neoplastic vertebral compression fractures (VCFs), as well as avoided serious complications from Polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) of Vertebroplasty and Kyphoplasty. Osteoconductive and osteoinductive and can be used to create biologic vertebral reconstruction. The adjacent vertebra integrity should be more protected by the construct with a similar elasticity and physical characteristics of the morcelized bone, more matched to that of adjacent bone than PMMA. The indications and surgical techniques are described herein.

  1. Evolution of vertebrate colour vision.

    PubMed

    Jacobs, Gerald H; Rowe, Mickey P

    2004-07-01

    Recent years have witnessed a growing interest in learning how colour vision has evolved. This trend has been fuelled by an enhanced understanding of the nature and extent of colour vision among contemporary species, by a deeper understanding of the paleontological record and by the application of new tools from molecular biology. This review provides an assessment of the progress in understanding the evolution of vertebrate colour vision. In so doing, we offer accounts of the evolution of three classes of mechanism important for colour vision--photopigment opsins, oil droplets and retinal organisation--and then examine details of how colour vision has evolved among mammals and, more specifically, among primates.

  2. Endocrine disruption in aquatic vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Kloas, Werner; Urbatzka, Ralph; Opitz, Robert; Würtz, Sven; Behrends, Thomas; Hermelink, Björn; Hofmann, Frauke; Jagnytsch, Oana; Kroupova, Hana; Lorenz, Claudia; Neumann, Nadja; Pietsch, Constanze; Trubiroha, Achim; Van Ballegooy, Christoph; Wiedemann, Caterina; Lutz, Ilka

    2009-04-01

    Environmental compounds can interfere with endocrine systems of wildlife and humans. The main sink of such substances, called endocrine disrupters (ED), are surface waters. Thus, aquatic vertebrates, such as fish and amphibians, are most endangered. ED can adversely affect reproductive biology and the thyroid system. ED act by (anti)estrogenic and (anti)androgenic modes of action, resulting in abnormal sexual differentiation and impaired reproduction. These effects are mainly driven by direct interferences of ED with sex steroid receptors rather than indirectly by impacting synthesis and bioavailability of sex steroids, which in turn might affect the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis. Recent findings reveal that, in addition to the human-produced waste of ED, natural sources, such as parasites and decomposition of leaves, also might act as ED, markedly affecting sexual differentiation and reproduction in fish and amphibians. Although the thyroid system has essential functions in both fish and amphibians, amphibian metamorphosis has been introduced as the most sensitive model to detect thyroidal ED; no suitable fish model exists. Whereas ED may act primarily on only one specific endocrine target, all endocrine systems will eventually be deregulated as they are intimately connected to each other. The recent ecotoxicological issue of pharmaceutically active compounds (PhACs) present in the aquatic environment indicates a high potential for further endocrine modes of action on aquatic vertebrates by ED derived from PhACs, such as glucocorticoids, progestins, and beta-agonists.

  3. Opportunities and costs for preventing vertebrate extinctions.

    PubMed

    Conde, Dalia A; Colchero, Fernando; Güneralp, Burak; Gusset, Markus; Skolnik, Ben; Parr, Michael; Byers, Onnie; Johnson, Kevin; Young, Glyn; Flesness, Nate; Possingham, Hugh; Fa, John E

    2015-03-16

    Despite an increase in policy and management responses to the global biodiversity crisis, implementation of the 20 Aichi Biodiversity Targets still shows insufficient progress [1]. These targets, strategic goals defined by the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), address major causes of biodiversity loss in part by establishing protected areas (Target 11) and preventing species extinctions (Target 12). To achieve this, increased interventions will be required for a large number of sites and species. The Alliance for Zero Extinction (AZE) [2], a consortium of conservation-oriented organisations that aims to protect Critically Endangered and Endangered species restricted to single sites, has identified 920 species of mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles, conifers and reef-building corals in 588 'trigger' sites [3]. These are arguably the most irreplaceable category of important biodiversity conservation sites. Protected area coverage of AZE sites is a key indicator of progress towards Target 11 [1]. Moreover, effective conservation of AZE sites is essential to achieve Target 12, as the loss of any of these sites would certainly result in the global extinction of at least one species [2]. However, averting human-induced species extinctions within AZE sites requires enhanced planning tools to increase the chances of success [3]. Here, we assess the potential for ensuring the long-term conservation of AZE vertebrate species (157 mammals, 165 birds, 17 reptiles and 502 amphibians) by calculating a conservation opportunity index (COI) for each species. The COI encompasses a set of measurable indicators that quantify the possibility of achieving successful conservation of a species in its natural habitat (COIh) and by establishing insurance populations in zoos (COIc). PMID:25784036

  4. Opportunities and costs for preventing vertebrate extinctions.

    PubMed

    Conde, Dalia A; Colchero, Fernando; Güneralp, Burak; Gusset, Markus; Skolnik, Ben; Parr, Michael; Byers, Onnie; Johnson, Kevin; Young, Glyn; Flesness, Nate; Possingham, Hugh; Fa, John E

    2015-03-16

    Despite an increase in policy and management responses to the global biodiversity crisis, implementation of the 20 Aichi Biodiversity Targets still shows insufficient progress [1]. These targets, strategic goals defined by the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), address major causes of biodiversity loss in part by establishing protected areas (Target 11) and preventing species extinctions (Target 12). To achieve this, increased interventions will be required for a large number of sites and species. The Alliance for Zero Extinction (AZE) [2], a consortium of conservation-oriented organisations that aims to protect Critically Endangered and Endangered species restricted to single sites, has identified 920 species of mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles, conifers and reef-building corals in 588 'trigger' sites [3]. These are arguably the most irreplaceable category of important biodiversity conservation sites. Protected area coverage of AZE sites is a key indicator of progress towards Target 11 [1]. Moreover, effective conservation of AZE sites is essential to achieve Target 12, as the loss of any of these sites would certainly result in the global extinction of at least one species [2]. However, averting human-induced species extinctions within AZE sites requires enhanced planning tools to increase the chances of success [3]. Here, we assess the potential for ensuring the long-term conservation of AZE vertebrate species (157 mammals, 165 birds, 17 reptiles and 502 amphibians) by calculating a conservation opportunity index (COI) for each species. The COI encompasses a set of measurable indicators that quantify the possibility of achieving successful conservation of a species in its natural habitat (COIh) and by establishing insurance populations in zoos (COIc).

  5. Ghrelin Receptors in Non-Mammalian Vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Kaiya, Hiroyuki; Kangawa, Kenji; Miyazato, Mikiya

    2012-01-01

    The growth hormone secretagogue-receptor (GHS-R) was discovered in humans and pigs in 1996. The endogenous ligand, ghrelin, was discovered 3 years later, in 1999, and our understanding of the physiological significance of the ghrelin system in vertebrates has grown steadily since then. Although the ghrelin system in non-mammalian vertebrates is a subject of great interest, protein sequence data for the receptor in non-mammalian vertebrates has been limited until recently, and related biological information has not been well organized. In this review, we summarize current information related to the ghrelin receptor in non-mammalian vertebrates. PMID:23882259

  6. Estrogenic modulation of auditory processing: a vertebrate comparison

    PubMed Central

    Caras, Melissa L.

    2013-01-01

    Sex-steroid hormones are well-known regulators of vocal motor behavior in several organisms. A large body of evidence now indicates that these same hormones modulate processing at multiple levels of the ascending auditory pathway. The goal of this review is to provide a comparative analysis of the role of estrogens in vertebrate auditory function. Four major conclusions can be drawn from the literature: First, estrogens may influence the development of the mammalian auditory system. Second, estrogenic signaling protects the mammalian auditory system from noise- and age-related damage. Third, estrogens optimize auditory processing during periods of reproductive readiness in multiple vertebrate lineages. Finally, brain-derived estrogens can act locally to enhance auditory response properties in at least one avian species. This comparative examination may lead to a better appreciation of the role of estrogens in the processing of natural vocalizations and may provide useful insights toward alleviating auditory dysfunctions emanating from hormonal imbalances. PMID:23911849

  7. Third-generation percutaneous vertebral augmentation systems.

    PubMed

    Vanni, Daniele; Galzio, Renato; Kazakova, Anna; Pantalone, Andrea; Grillea, Giovanni; Bartolo, Marcello; Salini, Vincenzo; Magliani, Vincenzo

    2016-03-01

    Currently, there is no general consensus about the management of osteoporotic vertebral fractures (OVF). In the past, conservative treatment for at least one month was deemed appropriate for the majority of vertebral fractures. When pain persisted after conservative treatment, it was necessary to consider surgical interventions including: vertebroplasty for vertebral fractures with less than 30% loss of height of the affected vertebral body and kyphoplasty for vertebral fractures with greater than 30% loss of height. Currently, this type of treatment is not feasible. Herein we review the characteristics and methods of operation of three of the most common percutaneous vertebral augmentation systems (PVAS) for the treatment of OVF: Vertebral Body Stenting(®) (VBS), OsseoFix(®) and Spine Jack(®). VBS is a titanium device accompanied by a hydraulic (as opposed to mechanical) working system which allows a partial and not immediate possibility to control the opening of the device. On the other hand, OsseoFix(®) and Spine Jack(®) are accompanied by a mechanical working system which allows a progressive and controlled reduction of the vertebral fracture. Another important aspect to consider is the vertebral body height recovery. OsseoFix(®) has an indirect mechanism of action: the compaction of the trabecular bone causes an increase in the vertebral body height. Unlike the Vertebral Body Stenting(®) and Spine Jack(®), the OsseoFix(®) has no direct lift mechanism. Therefore, for these characteristics and for the force that this device is able to provide. In our opinion, Spine Jack(®) is the only device also suitable for the treatment OVF, traumatic fracture (recent, old or inveterate) and primary or secondary bone tumors. PMID:27683690

  8. Third-generation percutaneous vertebral augmentation systems

    PubMed Central

    Galzio, Renato; Kazakova, Anna; Pantalone, Andrea; Grillea, Giovanni; Bartolo, Marcello; Salini, Vincenzo; Magliani, Vincenzo

    2016-01-01

    Currently, there is no general consensus about the management of osteoporotic vertebral fractures (OVF). In the past, conservative treatment for at least one month was deemed appropriate for the majority of vertebral fractures. When pain persisted after conservative treatment, it was necessary to consider surgical interventions including: vertebroplasty for vertebral fractures with less than 30% loss of height of the affected vertebral body and kyphoplasty for vertebral fractures with greater than 30% loss of height. Currently, this type of treatment is not feasible. Herein we review the characteristics and methods of operation of three of the most common percutaneous vertebral augmentation systems (PVAS) for the treatment of OVF: Vertebral Body Stenting® (VBS), OsseoFix® and Spine Jack®. VBS is a titanium device accompanied by a hydraulic (as opposed to mechanical) working system which allows a partial and not immediate possibility to control the opening of the device. On the other hand, OsseoFix® and Spine Jack® are accompanied by a mechanical working system which allows a progressive and controlled reduction of the vertebral fracture. Another important aspect to consider is the vertebral body height recovery. OsseoFix® has an indirect mechanism of action: the compaction of the trabecular bone causes an increase in the vertebral body height. Unlike the Vertebral Body Stenting® and Spine Jack®, the OsseoFix® has no direct lift mechanism. Therefore, for these characteristics and for the force that this device is able to provide. In our opinion, Spine Jack® is the only device also suitable for the treatment OVF, traumatic fracture (recent, old or inveterate) and primary or secondary bone tumors.

  9. Third-generation percutaneous vertebral augmentation systems

    PubMed Central

    Galzio, Renato; Kazakova, Anna; Pantalone, Andrea; Grillea, Giovanni; Bartolo, Marcello; Salini, Vincenzo; Magliani, Vincenzo

    2016-01-01

    Currently, there is no general consensus about the management of osteoporotic vertebral fractures (OVF). In the past, conservative treatment for at least one month was deemed appropriate for the majority of vertebral fractures. When pain persisted after conservative treatment, it was necessary to consider surgical interventions including: vertebroplasty for vertebral fractures with less than 30% loss of height of the affected vertebral body and kyphoplasty for vertebral fractures with greater than 30% loss of height. Currently, this type of treatment is not feasible. Herein we review the characteristics and methods of operation of three of the most common percutaneous vertebral augmentation systems (PVAS) for the treatment of OVF: Vertebral Body Stenting® (VBS), OsseoFix® and Spine Jack®. VBS is a titanium device accompanied by a hydraulic (as opposed to mechanical) working system which allows a partial and not immediate possibility to control the opening of the device. On the other hand, OsseoFix® and Spine Jack® are accompanied by a mechanical working system which allows a progressive and controlled reduction of the vertebral fracture. Another important aspect to consider is the vertebral body height recovery. OsseoFix® has an indirect mechanism of action: the compaction of the trabecular bone causes an increase in the vertebral body height. Unlike the Vertebral Body Stenting® and Spine Jack®, the OsseoFix® has no direct lift mechanism. Therefore, for these characteristics and for the force that this device is able to provide. In our opinion, Spine Jack® is the only device also suitable for the treatment OVF, traumatic fracture (recent, old or inveterate) and primary or secondary bone tumors. PMID:27683690

  10. Heat shock during early somitogenesis induces caudal vertebral column defects in Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar).

    PubMed

    Wargelius, Anna; Fjelldal, Per Gunnar; Hansen, Tom

    2005-07-01

    In several terrestrial vertebrates, heat shock (HS) during somitogenesis causes vertebral deformities. To determine if vertebral deformities can occur due to sudden temperature changes during early development in fish, Atlantic salmon embryos were HS treated during somitogenesis. Ten months later these individuals displayed a high prevalence of caudal vertebral column condensations (27-34%). The defects were located caudally of the abdominal cavity, displaying an even distribution in this region independent of time of HS. To determine if HS disturbed vertebral development during somitogenesis, two genes coding for markers of skeletal development were identified, namely, the secreted protein Shh (Sashh) and the transcription factor Twist (Satwist). These proteins are involved in the proliferation and specification of presumptive skeletal cells (sclerotome) in vertebrates. The spatial expression pattern of sashh and satwist in salmon indicated a functional conservation of these proteins. Furthermore, HS embryos displayed expressional disturbance in both sashh and satwist, indicating an effect of HS on sclerotomal cell patterning. However, the HS-protecting ability in embryos seems to be individually regulated because reduction in gene expression was not detected at all stages; in addition, HS did not induce somitic disturbance and vertebral deformity in all embryos.

  11. Building the backbone: the development and evolution of vertebral patterning.

    PubMed

    Fleming, Angeleen; Kishida, Marcia G; Kimmel, Charles B; Keynes, Roger J

    2015-05-15

    The segmented vertebral column comprises a repeat series of vertebrae, each consisting of two key components: the vertebral body (or centrum) and the vertebral arches. Despite being a defining feature of the vertebrates, much remains to be understood about vertebral development and evolution. Particular controversy surrounds whether vertebral component structures are homologous across vertebrates, how somite and vertebral patterning are connected, and the developmental origin of vertebral bone-mineralizing cells. Here, we assemble evidence from ichthyologists, palaeontologists and developmental biologists to consider these issues. Vertebral arch elements were present in early stem vertebrates, whereas centra arose later. We argue that centra are homologous among jawed vertebrates, and review evidence in teleosts that the notochord plays an instructive role in segmental patterning, alongside the somites, and contributes to mineralization. By clarifying the evolutionary relationship between centra and arches, and their varying modes of skeletal mineralization, we can better appreciate the detailed mechanisms that regulate and diversify vertebral patterning.

  12. Building the backbone: the development and evolution of vertebral patterning.

    PubMed

    Fleming, Angeleen; Kishida, Marcia G; Kimmel, Charles B; Keynes, Roger J

    2015-05-15

    The segmented vertebral column comprises a repeat series of vertebrae, each consisting of two key components: the vertebral body (or centrum) and the vertebral arches. Despite being a defining feature of the vertebrates, much remains to be understood about vertebral development and evolution. Particular controversy surrounds whether vertebral component structures are homologous across vertebrates, how somite and vertebral patterning are connected, and the developmental origin of vertebral bone-mineralizing cells. Here, we assemble evidence from ichthyologists, palaeontologists and developmental biologists to consider these issues. Vertebral arch elements were present in early stem vertebrates, whereas centra arose later. We argue that centra are homologous among jawed vertebrates, and review evidence in teleosts that the notochord plays an instructive role in segmental patterning, alongside the somites, and contributes to mineralization. By clarifying the evolutionary relationship between centra and arches, and their varying modes of skeletal mineralization, we can better appreciate the detailed mechanisms that regulate and diversify vertebral patterning. PMID:25968309

  13. Vertebral fracture assessment in acromegaly.

    PubMed

    Madeira, Miguel; Neto, Leonardo Vieira; Torres, Carolina Hammes; de Mendonça, Laura Maria Carvalho; Gadelha, Mônica Roberto; de Farias, Maria Lúcia Fleiuss

    2013-01-01

    Most vertebral fractures (VFs) are asymptomatic and incidentally found on X-rays. The effects of acromegaly on bone mineral density (BMD) are still controversial, and the prevalence of VFs in this specific population remains uncertain. The objective of this study was to assess VFs in acromegaly through vertebral fracture assessment (VFA) by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA). Seventy-five acromegalic patients from the same center (53 female; age: 48.9±14.5yr) were enrolled in this study. None of them referred previous fragility fracture. They were divided according to the presence or absence of moderate or severe VFs on VFA, a densitometric spine imaging. Age, gender, estimated duration of disease, insulin-like growth factor I levels, disease control and gonadal status, as well as BMD and body composition (analyzed by DXA) were compared between these 2 groups. A prevalence of 10.6% of clinically unapparent VFs was observed. Eight patients had 13 moderate or severe VFs, and only one of them had osteoporosis at densitometry. There was a trend to longer duration of acromegaly before diagnosis, higher prevalence of hypogonadism, and higher BMD Z-score at lumbar spine and femoral neck in fractured patients, without reaching statistical significance. There is a significant prevalence of moderate and severe VFs in acromegalic patients, independently of BMD. More longitudinal and controlled studies are needed to recommend the use of VFA in all acromegalic patients submitted to DXA scan. VFA is simple, practical, uses low radiation, and may provide important information in the management of acromegaly.

  14. Physiology of cell volume regulation in vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Hoffmann, Else K; Lambert, Ian H; Pedersen, Stine F

    2009-01-01

    The ability to control cell volume is pivotal for cell function. Cell volume perturbation elicits a wide array of signaling events, leading to protective (e.g., cytoskeletal rearrangement) and adaptive (e.g., altered expression of osmolyte transporters and heat shock proteins) measures and, in most cases, activation of volume regulatory osmolyte transport. After acute swelling, cell volume is regulated by the process of regulatory volume decrease (RVD), which involves the activation of KCl cotransport and of channels mediating K(+), Cl(-), and taurine efflux. Conversely, after acute shrinkage, cell volume is regulated by the process of regulatory volume increase (RVI), which is mediated primarily by Na(+)/H(+) exchange, Na(+)-K(+)-2Cl(-) cotransport, and Na(+) channels. Here, we review in detail the current knowledge regarding the molecular identity of these transport pathways and their regulation by, e.g., membrane deformation, ionic strength, Ca(2+), protein kinases and phosphatases, cytoskeletal elements, GTP binding proteins, lipid mediators, and reactive oxygen species, upon changes in cell volume. We also discuss the nature of the upstream elements in volume sensing in vertebrate organisms. Importantly, cell volume impacts on a wide array of physiological processes, including transepithelial transport; cell migration, proliferation, and death; and changes in cell volume function as specific signals regulating these processes. A discussion of this issue concludes the review. PMID:19126758

  15. Idiopathic segmental sclerosis of vertebral bodies

    SciTech Connect

    McCarthy, E.F.; Dorfman, H.D.

    1982-12-01

    Five cases of idiopathic vetebral sclerosis are presented. The features of this condition are segmental vertebral sclerosis of a single lumbar vertebra in a young adult without disc space narrowing or alteration of vertebral contour. The differential diagnosis is discussed. Lumbar vertebra biopsies of three patients showed reactive nonspecific osteosclerosis.

  16. Nanotechnology for treating osteoporotic vertebral fractures

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Chunxia; Wei, Donglei; Yang, Huilin; Chen, Tao; Yang, Lei

    2015-01-01

    Osteoporosis is a serious public health problem affecting hundreds of millions of aged people worldwide, with severe consequences including vertebral fractures that are associated with significant morbidity and mortality. To augment or treat osteoporotic vertebral fractures, a number of surgical approaches including minimally invasive vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty have been developed. However, these approaches face problems and difficulties with efficacy and long-term stability. Recent advances and progress in nanotechnology are opening up new opportunities to improve the surgical procedures for treating osteoporotic vertebral fractures. This article reviews the improvements enabled by new nanomaterials and focuses on new injectable biomaterials like bone cements and surgical instruments for treating vertebral fractures. This article also provides an introduction to osteoporotic vertebral fractures and current clinical treatments, along with the rationale and efficacy of utilizing nanomaterials to modify and improve biomaterials or instruments. In addition, perspectives on future trends with injectable bone cements and surgical instruments enhanced by nanotechnology are provided. PMID:26316746

  17. Lamprey: a model for vertebrate evolutionary research.

    PubMed

    Xu, Yang; Zhu, Si-Wei; Li, Qing-Wei

    2016-09-18

    Lampreys belong to the superclass Cyclostomata and represent the most ancient group of vertebrates. Existing for over 360 million years, they are known as living fossils due to their many evolutionally conserved features. They are not only a keystone species for studying the origin and evolution of vertebrates, but also one of the best models for researching vertebrate embryonic development and organ differentiation. From the perspective of genetic information, the lamprey genome remains primitive compared with that of other higher vertebrates, and possesses abundant functional genes. Through scientific and technological progress, scientists have conducted in-depth studies on the nervous, endocrine, and immune systems of lampreys. Such research has significance for understanding and revealing the origin and evolution of vertebrates, and could contribute to a greater understanding of human diseases and treatments. This review presents the current progress and significance of lamprey research. PMID:27686784

  18. Lamprey: a model for vertebrate evolutionary research

    PubMed Central

    XU, Yang; ZHU, Si-Wei; LI, Qing-Wei

    2016-01-01

    Lampreys belong to the superclass Cyclostomata and represent the most ancient group of vertebrates. Existing for over 360 million years, they are known as living fossils due to their many evolutionally conserved features. They are not only a keystone species for studying the origin and evolution of vertebrates, but also one of the best models for researching vertebrate embryonic development and organ differentiation. From the perspective of genetic information, the lamprey genome remains primitive compared with that of other higher vertebrates, and possesses abundant functional genes. Through scientific and technological progress, scientists have conducted in-depth studies on the nervous, endocrine, and immune systems of lampreys. Such research has significance for understanding and revealing the origin and evolution of vertebrates, and could contribute to a greater understanding of human diseases and treatments. This review presents the current progress and significance of lamprey research. PMID:27686784

  19. Nanotechnology for treating osteoporotic vertebral fractures.

    PubMed

    Gao, Chunxia; Wei, Donglei; Yang, Huilin; Chen, Tao; Yang, Lei

    2015-01-01

    Osteoporosis is a serious public health problem affecting hundreds of millions of aged people worldwide, with severe consequences including vertebral fractures that are associated with significant morbidity and mortality. To augment or treat osteoporotic vertebral fractures, a number of surgical approaches including minimally invasive vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty have been developed. However, these approaches face problems and difficulties with efficacy and long-term stability. Recent advances and progress in nanotechnology are opening up new opportunities to improve the surgical procedures for treating osteoporotic vertebral fractures. This article reviews the improvements enabled by new nanomaterials and focuses on new injectable biomaterials like bone cements and surgical instruments for treating vertebral fractures. This article also provides an introduction to osteoporotic vertebral fractures and current clinical treatments, along with the rationale and efficacy of utilizing nanomaterials to modify and improve biomaterials or instruments. In addition, perspectives on future trends with injectable bone cements and surgical instruments enhanced by nanotechnology are provided. PMID:26316746

  20. Lamprey: a model for vertebrate evolutionary research.

    PubMed

    Xu, Yang; Zhu, Si-Wei; Li, Qing-Wei

    2016-09-18

    Lampreys belong to the superclass Cyclostomata and represent the most ancient group of vertebrates. Existing for over 360 million years, they are known as living fossils due to their many evolutionally conserved features. They are not only a keystone species for studying the origin and evolution of vertebrates, but also one of the best models for researching vertebrate embryonic development and organ differentiation. From the perspective of genetic information, the lamprey genome remains primitive compared with that of other higher vertebrates, and possesses abundant functional genes. Through scientific and technological progress, scientists have conducted in-depth studies on the nervous, endocrine, and immune systems of lampreys. Such research has significance for understanding and revealing the origin and evolution of vertebrates, and could contribute to a greater understanding of human diseases and treatments. This review presents the current progress and significance of lamprey research.

  1. Mitotic chromosome condensation in vertebrates

    SciTech Connect

    Vagnarelli, Paola

    2012-07-15

    Work from several laboratories over the past 10-15 years has revealed that, within the interphase nucleus, chromosomes are organized into spatially distinct territories [T. Cremer, C. Cremer, Chromosome territories, nuclear architecture and gene regulation in mammalian cells, Nat. Rev. Genet. 2 (2001) 292-301 and T. Cremer, M. Cremer, S. Dietzel, S. Muller, I. Solovei, S. Fakan, Chromosome territories-a functional nuclear landscape, Curr. Opin. Cell Biol. 18 (2006) 307-316]. The overall compaction level and intranuclear location varies as a function of gene density for both entire chromosomes [J.A. Croft, J.M. Bridger, S. Boyle, P. Perry, P. Teague,W.A. Bickmore, Differences in the localization and morphology of chromosomes in the human nucleus, J. Cell Biol. 145 (1999) 1119-1131] and specific chromosomal regions [N.L. Mahy, P.E. Perry, S. Gilchrist, R.A. Baldock, W.A. Bickmore, Spatial organization of active and inactive genes and noncoding DNA within chromosome territories, J. Cell Biol. 157 (2002) 579-589] (Fig. 1A, A'). In prophase, when cyclin B activity reaches a high threshold, chromosome condensation occurs followed by Nuclear Envelope Breakdown (NEB) [1]. At this point vertebrate chromosomes appear as compact structures harboring an attachment point for the spindle microtubules physically recognizable as a primary constriction where the two sister chromatids are held together. The transition from an unshaped interphase chromosome to the highly structured mitotic chromosome (compare Figs. 1A and B) has fascinated researchers for several decades now; however a definite picture of how this process is achieved and regulated is not yet in our hands and it will require more investigation to comprehend the complete process. From a biochemical point of view a vertebrate mitotic chromosomes is composed of DNA, histone proteins (60%) and non-histone proteins (40%) [6]. I will discuss below what is known to date on the contribution of these two different classes of

  2. Vertebral numbers and human evolution.

    PubMed

    Williams, Scott A; Middleton, Emily R; Villamil, Catalina I; Shattuck, Milena R

    2016-01-01

    Ever since Tyson (1699), anatomists have noted and compared differences in the regional numbers of vertebrae among humans and other hominoids. Subsequent workers interpreted these differences in phylogenetic, functional, and behavioral frameworks and speculated on the history of vertebral numbers during human evolution. Even in a modern phylogenetic framework and with greatly expanded sample sizes of hominoid species, researchers' conclusions vary drastically, positing that hominins evolved from either a "long-backed" (numerically long lumbar column) or a "short-backed" (numerically short lumbar column) ancestor. We show that these disparate interpretations are due in part to the use of different criteria for what defines a lumbar vertebra, but argue that, regardless of which lumbar definition is used, hominins are similar to their great ape relatives in possessing a short trunk, a rare occurrence in mammals and one that defines the clade Hominoidea. Furthermore, we address the recent claim that the early hominin thoracolumbar configuration is not distinct from that of modern humans and conclude that early hominins show evidence of "cranial shifting," which might explain the anomalous morphology of several early hominin fossils. Finally, we evaluate the competing hypotheses on numbers of vertebrae and argue that the current data support a hominin ancestor with an African ape-like short trunk and lower back.

  3. Melatonin Receptor Genes in Vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Li, Di Yan; Smith, David Glenn; Hardeland, Rüdiger; Yang, Ming Yao; Xu, Huai Liang; Zhang, Long; Yin, Hua Dong; Zhu, Qing

    2013-01-01

    Melatonin receptors are members of the G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) family. Three genes for melatonin receptors have been cloned. The MT1 (or Mel1a or MTNR1A) and MT2 (or Mel1b or MTNR1B) receptor subtypes are present in humans and other mammals, while an additional melatonin receptor subtype, Mel1c (or MTNR1C), has been identified in fish, amphibians and birds. Another melatonin related orphan receptor, GPR50, which does not bind melatonin, is found exclusively in mammals. The hormone melatonin is secreted primarily by the pineal gland, with highest levels occurring during the dark period of a circadian cycle. This hormone acts systemically in numerous organs. In the brain, it is involved in the regulation of various neural and endocrine processes, and it readjusts the circadian pacemaker, the suprachiasmatic nucleus. This article reviews recent studies of gene organization, expression, evolution and mutations of melatonin receptor genes of vertebrates. Gene polymorphisms reveal that numerous mutations are associated with diseases and disorders. The phylogenetic analysis of receptor genes indicates that GPR50 is an outgroup to all other melatonin receptor sequences. GPR50 may have separated from a melatonin receptor ancestor before the split between MTNR1C and the MTNR1A/B ancestor. PMID:23712359

  4. Rotations in a Vertebrate Setting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McCollum, Gin

    2003-05-01

    Rotational movements of the head are often considered to be measured in a single three dimensional coordinate system implemented by the semicircular canals of the vestibular system of the inner ear. However, the vertebrate body -- including the nervous system -- obeys rectangular symmetries alien to rotation groups. At best, nervous systems mimic the physical rotation group in a fragmented way, only partially reintegrating physical movements in whole organism responses. The vestibular canal reference frame is widely used in nervous systems, for example by eye movements. It is used to some extent even in the cerebrum, as evidenced by the remission of hemineglect -- in which half of space is ignored -- when the vestibular system is stimulated. However, reintegration of space by the organism remains incomplete. For example, compensatory eye movements (which in most cases aid visual fixation) may disagree with conscious self-motion perception. In addition, movement-induced nausea, illusions, and cue-free perceptions demonstrate symmetry breaking or incomplete spatial symmetries. As part of a long-term project to investigate rotation groups in nervous systems, we have analyzed the symmetry group of a primary vestibulo-spinal projection.

  5. Aging and regeneration in vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Sousounis, Konstantinos; Baddour, Joelle A; Tsonis, Panagiotis A

    2014-01-01

    Aging is marked by changes that affect organs and resident stem cell function. Shorting of telomeres, DNA damage, oxidative stress, deregulation of genes and proteins, impaired cell-cell communication, and an altered systemic environment cause the eventual demise of cells. At the same time, reparative activities also decline. It is intriguing to correlate aging with the decline of regenerative abilities. Animal models with strong regenerative capabilities imply that aging processes might not be affecting regeneration. In this review, we selectively present age-dependent changes in stem/progenitor cells that are vital for tissue homeostasis and repair. In addition, the aging effect on regeneration following injury in organs such as lung, skeletal muscle, heart, nervous system, cochlear hair, lens, and liver are discussed. These tissues are also known for diseases such as heart attack, stroke, cognitive impairment, cataract, and hearing loss that occur mostly during aging in humans. Conclusively, vertebrate regeneration declines with age with the loss of stem/progenitor cell function. Future studies on improving the function of stem cells, along with studies in fish and amphibians where regeneration does not decline with age, will undoubtedly provide insights into both processes. PMID:24512711

  6. RFamide Peptides in Early Vertebrate Development

    PubMed Central

    Sandvik, Guro Katrine; Hodne, Kjetil; Haug, Trude Marie; Okubo, Kataaki; Weltzien, Finn-Arne

    2014-01-01

    RFamides (RFa) are neuropeptides involved in many different physiological processes in vertebrates, such as reproductive behavior, pubertal activation of the reproductive endocrine axis, control of feeding behavior, and pain modulation. As research has focused mostly on their role in adult vertebrates, the possible roles of these peptides during development are poorly understood. However, the few studies that exist show that RFa are expressed early in development in different vertebrate classes, perhaps mostly associated with the central nervous system. Interestingly, the related peptide family of FMRFa has been shown to be important for brain development in invertebrates. In a teleost, the Japanese medaka, knockdown of genes in the Kiss system indicates that Kiss ligands and receptors are vital for brain development, but few other functional studies exist. Here, we review the literature of RFa in early vertebrate development, including the possible functional roles these peptides may play. PMID:25538682

  7. A Case of Aerococcus Urinae Vertebral Osteomyelitis

    PubMed Central

    Jerome, Michael; Slim, Jihad; Sison, Raymund; Marton, Randy

    2015-01-01

    Aerococcus urinae is an aerobic, alpha hemolytic gram positive coccus bacterium that grows in pairs or clusters. We report the first case of vertebral osteomyelitis due to A. urinae. This has not been previously reported in the literature. PMID:26069429

  8. Sleep and orexins in nonmammalian vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Volkoff, Hélène

    2012-01-01

    Although a precise definition of "sleep" has yet to be established, sleep-like behaviors have been observed in all animals studied to date including mammals and nonmammalian vertebrates. Orexins are hypothalamic neuropeptides that are involved in the regulation of many physiological functions, including feeding, thermoregulation, cardiovascular control, as well as the control of the sleep-wakefulness cycle. To date, the knowledge on the functions of orexins in nonmammalian vertebrates is still limited, but the similarity of the structures of orexins and their receptors among vertebrates suggest that they have similar conserved physiological functions. This review describes our current knowledge on sleep in nonmammalian vertebrates (birds, reptiles, amphibians, and fish) and the possible role of orexins in the regulation of their energy homeostasis and arousal states. PMID:22640621

  9. Radiotherapy in the treatment of vertebral hemangiomas

    SciTech Connect

    Faria, S.L.; Schlupp, W.R.; Chiminazzo, H. Jr.

    1985-02-01

    Symptomatic vertebral hemangiomas are not common. Although radiotherapy has been used as treatment, the data are sparse concerning total dose, fractionation and results. The authors report nine patients with vertebral hemangioma treated with 3000-4000 rad, 200 rad/day, 5 fractions per week, followed from 6 to 62 months. Seventy-seven percent had complete or almost complete disappearance of the symptoms. Radiotherapy schedules are discussed.

  10. Vertebrate Cells Express Protozoan Antigen after Hybridization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Crane, Mark St. J.; Dvorak, James A.

    1980-04-01

    Epimastigotes, the invertebrate host stage of Trypanosoma cruzi, the protozoan parasite causing Chagas' disease in man, were fused with vertebrate cells by using polyethylene glycol. Hybrid cells were selected on the basis of T. cruzi DNA complementation of biochemical deficiencies in the vertebrate cells. Some clones of the hybrid cells expressed T. cruzi-specific antigen. It might be possible to use selected antigens obtained from the hybrids as vaccines for immunodiagnosis or for elucidation of the pathogenesis of Chagas' disease.

  11. Percutaneous Vertebral Body Augmentation: An Updated Review

    PubMed Central

    Omidi-Kashani, Farzad

    2014-01-01

    There are many medical conditions like osteoporosis, tumor, or osteonecrosis that weaken the structural strength of the vertebral body and prone it to fracture. Percutaneous vertebral augmentation that is usually applied by polymethylmethacrylate is a relatively safe, effective, and long lasting procedure commonly performed in these situations. In this paper, we updated a review of biomechanics, indications, contraindications, surgical techniques, complications, and overall prognosis of these minimally invasive spinal procedures. PMID:25379561

  12. Role of Transpedicular Percutaneous Vertebral Biopsy for Diagnosis of Pathology in Vertebral Compression Fractures

    PubMed Central

    Nadkarni, Sunil; Hardikar, Sharad Moreshwar; Hardikar, Madan Sharad

    2016-01-01

    Study Design Retrospective observational study. Purpose To identify the role of percutaneous vertebral biopsy in histopathological diagnosis of vertebral compression fractures and to identify the frequency of unexpected malignancy in vertebral compression fractures. Overview of Literature Vertebral compression fractures are common in the Indian population. Magnetic resonance imaging and nuclear imaging have some limitations in the diagnosis of definitive pathology of vertebral compression fractures. Therefore, histological confirmation is necessary for definitive diagnosis and to plan appropriate management for patient. Methods A retrospective observational study was conducted involving 84 patients who underwent percutaneous vertebral biopsy between 2010 and 2014. We performed C-arm guided percutaneous transpedicular core vertebral biopsy of vertebral compression fractures under combination of local anesthesia and intravenous conscious sedation. Results Sufficient biopsy material was obtained in 79 of the 84 cases. In the other five cases, biopsy material was not sufficient for reporting. Out of the 79 cases, osteoporotic pathology was detected in 69 patients, malignancy was detected in 8 patients and no pathology was found in 2 patients. Two patients with distant metastases to vertebra were identified. Primary spinal malignancy was detected in 6 patients (1 unsuspected plasmacytoma, 5 diagnosed malignancy preoperatively). So, the frequency of unsuspected malignancy of this study was 1.19% (1/84). None of the patients had any complications. Conclusions C-arm guided percutaneous transpedicular vertebral biopsy is useful in obtaining definitive histopathological diagnosis of vertebral compression fractures, especially in differentiating malignant and non-malignant vertebral compression fractures and helping plan appropriate management of patients. The rate of unexpected malignancy in vertebral compression fracture was 1.19%. PMID:27790322

  13. Retroviral Diversity and Distribution in Vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Herniou, Elisabeth; Martin, Joanne; Miller, Karen; Cook, James; Wilkinson, Mark; Tristem, Michael

    1998-01-01

    We used the PCR to screen for the presence of endogenous retroviruses within the genomes of 18 vertebrate orders across eight classes, concentrating on reptilian, amphibian, and piscine hosts. Thirty novel retroviral sequences were isolated and characterized by sequencing approximately 1 kb of their encoded protease and reverse transcriptase genes. Isolation of novel viruses from so many disparate hosts suggests that retroviruses are likely to be ubiquitous within all but the most basal vertebrate classes and, furthermore, gives a good indication of the overall retroviral diversity within vertebrates. Phylogenetic analysis demonstrated that viruses clustering with (but not necessarily closely related to) the spumaviruses and murine leukemia viruses are widespread and abundant in vertebrate genomes. In contrast, we were unable to identify any viruses from hosts outside of mammals and birds which grouped with the other five currently recognized retroviral genera: the lentiviruses, human T-cell leukemia-related viruses, avian leukemia virus-related retroviruses, type D retroviruses, and mammalian type B retroviruses. There was also some indication that viruses isolated from individual vertebrate classes tended to cluster together in phylogenetic reconstructions. This implies that the horizontal transmission of at least some retroviruses, between some vertebrate classes, occurs relatively infrequently. It is likely that many of the retroviral sequences described here are distinct enough from those of previously characterized viruses to represent novel retroviral genera. PMID:9621058

  14. Evolution and development of the vertebrate neck

    PubMed Central

    Ericsson, Rolf; Knight, Robert; Johanson, Zerina

    2013-01-01

    Muscles of the vertebrate neck include the cucullaris and hypobranchials. Although a functional neck first evolved in the lobe-finned fishes (Sarcopterygii) with the separation of the pectoral/shoulder girdle from the skull, the neck muscles themselves have a much earlier origin among the vertebrates. For example, lampreys possess hypobranchial muscles, and may also possess the cucullaris. Recent research in chick has established that these two muscles groups have different origins, the hypobranchial muscles having a somitic origin but the cucullaris muscle deriving from anterior lateral plate mesoderm associated with somites 1–3. Additionally, the cucullaris utilizes genetic pathways more similar to the head than the trunk musculature. Although the latter results are from experiments in the chick, cucullaris homologues occur in a variety of more basal vertebrates such as the sharks and zebrafish. Data are urgently needed from these taxa to determine whether the cucullaris in these groups also derives from lateral plate mesoderm or from the anterior somites, and whether the former or the latter represent the basal vertebrate condition. Other lateral plate mesoderm derivatives include the appendicular skeleton (fins, limbs and supporting girdles). If the cucullaris is a definitive lateral plate-derived structure it may have evolved in conjunction with the shoulder/limb skeleton in vertebrates and thereby provided a greater degree of flexibility to the heads of predatory vertebrates. PMID:22697305

  15. The origins of colour vision in vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Collin, Shaun P; Trezise, Ann E O

    2004-07-01

    The capacity for colour vision is mediated by the comparison of the signal intensities from photoreceptors of two or more types that differ in spectral sensitivity. Morphological, physiological and molecular analyses of the retina in an agnathan (jawless) fish, the lamprey Geotria australis, may hold important clues to the origins of colour vision in vertebrates. Lampreys are extant representatives of an ancient group of vertebrates, the origins of which are thought to date back to at least the early Cambrian, approximately 540 million years ago. G. australis possesses five photoreceptor types, each with cone-like ultrastructural features and different spectral sensitivities. Recent molecular genetic studies have also revealed that five visual pigment (opsin) genes are expressed in the retina, each of which is orthologous to the major classes of vertebrate opsin genes. These findings reveal that multiple opsin genes originated very early in vertebrate evolution, prior to the separation of the jawed and jawless vertebrate lineages, thereby providing the genetic basis for colour vision in all vertebrates.

  16. Actin filament organization of foot processes in vertebrate glomerular podocytes.

    PubMed

    Ichimura, Koichiro; Kurihara, Hidetake; Sakai, Tatsuo

    2007-09-01

    We investigated the actin filament organization and immunolocalization of actin-binding proteins (alpha-actinin and cortactin) in the podocyte foot processes of eight vertebrate species (lamprey, carp, newt, frog, gecko, turtle, quail, and rat). Three types of actin cytoskeleton were found in these foot processes. (1) A cortical actin network with cortactin filling the space between the plasma membrane and the other actin cytoskeletons described below was found in all of the species examined here. The data indicated that the cortical actin network was the minimal essential actin cytoskeleton for the formation and maintenance of the foot processes in vertebrate podocytes. (2) An actin bundle with alpha-actinin existing along the longitudinal axis of foot process above the level of slit diaphragms was only observed in quail and rat. (3) An actin fascicle consisting of much fewer numbers of actin filaments than that of the actin bundle was observed in the species other than quail and rat, but at various frequencies. These findings suggest that the actin bundle is an additional actin cytoskeleton reflecting a functional state peculiar to quail and rat glomeruli. Considering the higher intraglomerular pressure and the extremely thin filtration barrier in birds and mammals, the foot processes probably mainly protect the thinner filtration barrier from the higher internal pressure occurring in quail and rat glomeruli. Therefore, we consider that the actin bundle plays a crucial role in the mechanical protection of the filtration barrier. Moreover, the actin fascicle may be a potential precursor of the actin bundle.

  17. Jack vertebral dilator kyphoplasty for treatment of osteoporotic vertebral compression fractures.

    PubMed

    Li, Dapeng; Huang, Yonghui; Yang, Huilin; Chen, Qi; Sun, Taicun; Wu, Yan; Li, Xuefeng

    2014-01-01

    Osteoporotic vertebral compression fractures (OVCFs) are common in the elderly population and often involve the thoracolumbar vertebrae. Clinical symptoms of OVCFs include severe pain, loss of vertebral height, progressive kyphosis and increased mortality. Jack vertebral dilator kyphoplasty is a recently developed OVCFs treatment modality, with few systematic studies present in the literature. This retrospective study was designed to investigate the safety and efficacy of Jack vertebral dilator kyphoplasty for treating thoracolumbar OVCFs. Sixteen elderly patients (55-85 years) with solitary thoracolumbar OVCFs were treated with this procedure and followed-up (10-27 months). The amount of injected bone cement and operative time, preoperative and postoperative visual analogue scores, anterior and middle vertebral body heights, local kyphosis angle, and complications was analysed. The results showed that the method provided long-term pain relief and restoration of the vertebral body height and spinal alignment. No serious complications occurred, but two patients experienced recompression of the vertebral body, and one patient experienced cement leakage into a disc. In conclusion, Jack vertebral dilator kyphoplasty is a safe and effective minimally invasive procedure for treatment of OVCFs.

  18. Developmental mechanisms of vertebrate limb evolution.

    PubMed

    Cohn, M J

    2001-01-01

    Over the past few years, our understanding of the evolution of limbs has been improved by important new discoveries in the fossil record. Additionally, rapid progress has been made in identifying the molecular basis of vertebrate limb development. It is now possible to integrate these two areas of research in order to identify the molecular developmental mechanisms underlying the evolution of paired appendages in vertebrates. After the origin of paired appendages, several vertebrate lineages reduced or eliminated fins and limbs and returned to the limbless condition. Examples include eels, caecilians, snakes, slow worms and several marine mammals. Analyses of fossil and extant vertebrates show that evolution of limblessness frequently occurred together with elongation of the trunk and loss of clear morphological boundaries in the vertebral column. This may be suggestive of a common developmental mechanism linking these two processes. We have addressed this question by analysing python embryonic development at tissue, cellular and molecular levels, and we have identified a developmental mechanism which may account for evolution of limb loss in these animals.

  19. Developmental mechanisms of vertebrate limb evolution.

    PubMed

    Cohn, M J

    2001-01-01

    Over the past few years, our understanding of the evolution of limbs has been improved by important new discoveries in the fossil record. Additionally, rapid progress has been made in identifying the molecular basis of vertebrate limb development. It is now possible to integrate these two areas of research in order to identify the molecular developmental mechanisms underlying the evolution of paired appendages in vertebrates. After the origin of paired appendages, several vertebrate lineages reduced or eliminated fins and limbs and returned to the limbless condition. Examples include eels, caecilians, snakes, slow worms and several marine mammals. Analyses of fossil and extant vertebrates show that evolution of limblessness frequently occurred together with elongation of the trunk and loss of clear morphological boundaries in the vertebral column. This may be suggestive of a common developmental mechanism linking these two processes. We have addressed this question by analysing python embryonic development at tissue, cellular and molecular levels, and we have identified a developmental mechanism which may account for evolution of limb loss in these animals. PMID:11277086

  20. The vertebral column of Australopithecus sediba.

    PubMed

    Williams, Scott A; Ostrofsky, Kelly R; Frater, Nakita; Churchill, Steven E; Schmid, Peter; Berger, Lee R

    2013-04-12

    Two partial vertebral columns of Australopithecus sediba grant insight into aspects of early hominin spinal mobility, lumbar curvature, vertebral formula, and transitional vertebra position. Au. sediba likely possessed five non-rib-bearing lumbar vertebrae and five sacral elements, the same configuration that occurs modally in modern humans. This finding contrasts with other interpretations of early hominin regional vertebral numbers. Importantly, the transitional vertebra is distinct from and above the last rib-bearing vertebra in Au. sediba, resulting in a functionally longer lower back. This configuration, along with a strongly wedged last lumbar vertebra and other indicators of lordotic posture, would have contributed to a highly flexible spine that is derived compared with earlier members of the genus Australopithecus and similar to that of the Nariokotome Homo erectus skeleton.

  1. Hedgehog Secretion and Signal Transduction in Vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Ryan, Kaitlyn E.; Chiang, Chin

    2012-01-01

    Signaling by the Hedgehog (Hh) family of secreted proteins is essential for proper embryonic patterning and development. Dysregulation of Hh signaling is associated with a variety of human diseases ranging from developmental disorders such as holoprosencephaly to certain forms of cancer, including medulloblastoma and basal cell carcinoma. Genetic studies in flies and mice have shaped our understanding of Hh signaling and revealed that nearly all core components of the pathway are highly conserved. Although many aspects of the Drosophila Hh pathway are conserved in vertebrates, mechanistic differences between the two species have begun to emerge. Perhaps the most striking divergence in vertebrate Hh signaling is its dependence on the primary cilium, a vestigial organelle that is largely absent in flies. This minireview will provide an overview of Hh signaling and present recent insights into vertebrate Hh secretion, receptor binding, and signal transduction. PMID:22474285

  2. [Amphioxus: how to become a vertebrate].

    PubMed

    Bertrand, Stéphanie; Camasses, Alain; Escriva, Hector

    2007-01-01

    Evo-devo is a young disciplin, which aims to explain the morphological evolution of organisms through developmental mechanisms and genes networks. A major question within this discipline is the origin of vertebrates. It seems now admitted that vertebrates derive from an invertebrate chordate ancestor. Several models among living chordate representatives are used today to answer this question. The small world of evo-evo interested in the emergence of vertebrates is ebullient about the advent of several totally sequenced genomes allowing comparative analyses to become evermore reliable. Furthermore "non classical" models are developed which can be submitted to refined developmental analysis. One of these is amphioxus (genus Branchyostoma), "a peaceful anchory fillet to illuminate chordate evolution" (Garcia-Fernandez, 2006a, b). The features of this model are described in this review.

  3. The vertebral column of Australopithecus sediba.

    PubMed

    Williams, Scott A; Ostrofsky, Kelly R; Frater, Nakita; Churchill, Steven E; Schmid, Peter; Berger, Lee R

    2013-04-12

    Two partial vertebral columns of Australopithecus sediba grant insight into aspects of early hominin spinal mobility, lumbar curvature, vertebral formula, and transitional vertebra position. Au. sediba likely possessed five non-rib-bearing lumbar vertebrae and five sacral elements, the same configuration that occurs modally in modern humans. This finding contrasts with other interpretations of early hominin regional vertebral numbers. Importantly, the transitional vertebra is distinct from and above the last rib-bearing vertebra in Au. sediba, resulting in a functionally longer lower back. This configuration, along with a strongly wedged last lumbar vertebra and other indicators of lordotic posture, would have contributed to a highly flexible spine that is derived compared with earlier members of the genus Australopithecus and similar to that of the Nariokotome Homo erectus skeleton. PMID:23580532

  4. The origin of the vertebrate skeleton

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pivar, Stuart

    2011-01-01

    The anatomy of the human and other vertebrates has been well described since the days of Leonardo da Vinci and Vesalius. The causative origin of the configuration of the bones and of their shapes and forms has been addressed over the ensuing centuries by such outstanding investigators as Goethe, Von Baer, Gegenbauer, Wilhelm His and D'Arcy Thompson, who sought to apply mechanical principles to morphogenesis. However, no coherent causative model of morphogenesis has ever been presented. This paper presents a causative model for the origin of the vertebrate skeleton, based on the premise that the body is a mosaic enlargement of self-organized patterns engrained in the membrane of the egg cell. Drawings illustrate the proposed hypothetical origin of membrane patterning and the changes in the hydrostatic equilibrium of the cytoplasm that cause topographical deformations resulting in the vertebrate body form.

  5. Three Distinct Glutamate Decarboxylase Genes in Vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Grone, Brian P.; Maruska, Karen P.

    2016-01-01

    Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) is a widely conserved signaling molecule that in animals has been adapted as a neurotransmitter. GABA is synthesized from the amino acid glutamate by the action of glutamate decarboxylases (GADs). Two vertebrate genes, GAD1 and GAD2, encode distinct GAD proteins: GAD67 and GAD65, respectively. We have identified a third vertebrate GAD gene, GAD3. This gene is conserved in fishes as well as tetrapods. We analyzed protein sequence, gene structure, synteny, and phylogenetics to identify GAD3 as a homolog of GAD1 and GAD2. Interestingly, we found that GAD3 was lost in the hominid lineage. Because of the importance of GABA as a neurotransmitter, GAD3 may play important roles in vertebrate nervous systems. PMID:27461130

  6. The efficacy of radiotherapy for vertebral hemangiomas.

    PubMed

    Miszczyk, L; Ficek, K; Trela, K; Spindel, J

    2001-01-01

    Vertebral hemangiomas are benign, slowly growing tumors sometimes causing local pain in the spine and/or neurologic disorders. The present paper includes 14 cases of painful vertebral hemangiomas treated by radiotherapy. All patients were irradiated using standard fractionation scheme with a total dose 20-30 Gy. One month after the treatment complete pain relief was noted in 36% of cases, five months later in 67% of cases, but in the remaining cases partial pain relief was noted. No correlation between treatment outcome and different biological and technical factors was found. No dose-response relationship was noted. The results suggest that anti-inflamatory effect of radiation plays the major role in this kind of treatment and that radiotherapy for vertebral hemangiomas is easy, short and highly effective analgetic treatment modality.

  7. Cervical Vertebral Body Chordoma in a Cat.

    PubMed

    Hampel, R; Taylor-Brown, F; Priestnall, S L

    2016-05-01

    A 9-year-old, neutered female Maine Coon cat with a 6-week history of progressive ataxia was diagnosed with a cervical vertebral body mass using magnetic resonance imaging. The mass displaced and compressed the cervical spinal cord. The cat was humanely destroyed and necropsy examination confirmed a mass within the second cervical vertebral body. Microscopically, the mass was composed of large, clear, vacuolated ('physaliferous') cells. Immunohistochemically, the neoplastic cells expressed both cytokeratin and vimentin and the final diagnosis was a cervical, vertebral body chordoma. This is only the third report of a chordoma in this species and the first in this location. Chordoma should be considered as a potential differential diagnosis for tumours arising from the cervical vertebrae in the cat.

  8. Chitin is endogenously produced in vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Sohn, Joel J.; Amemiya, Chris T.

    2015-01-01

    Chitin, a biopolymer of N-acetylglucosamine, is abundant in invertebrates and fungi, and is an important structural molecule. There has been a longstanding belief that vertebrates do not produce chitin, however, we have obtained compelling evidence to the contrary. Chitin synthase genes are present in numerous fishes and amphibians, and chitin is localized in situ to the lumen of the developing zebrafish gut, in epithelial cells of fish scales, and in at least three different cell types in larval salamander appendages. Chitin synthase gene knockdowns and various histochemical experiments in zebrafish further authenticated our results. Finally, a polysaccharide was extracted from scales of salmon that exhibited all the chemical hallmarks of chitin. Our data and analyses demonstrate the existence of endogenous chitin in vertebrates and suggest that it serves multiple roles in vertebrate biology. PMID:25772447

  9. The evolution of early vertebrate photoreceptors.

    PubMed

    Collin, Shaun P; Davies, Wayne L; Hart, Nathan S; Hunt, David M

    2009-10-12

    Meeting the challenge of sampling an ancient aquatic landscape by the early vertebrates was crucial to their survival and would establish a retinal bauplan to be used by all subsequent vertebrate descendents. Image-forming eyes were under tremendous selection pressure and the ability to identify suitable prey and detect potential predators was thought to be one of the major drivers of speciation in the Early Cambrian. Based on the fossil record, we know that hagfishes, lampreys, holocephalans, elasmobranchs and lungfishes occupy critical stages in vertebrate evolution, having remained relatively unchanged over hundreds of millions of years. Now using extant representatives of these 'living fossils', we are able to piece together the evolution of vertebrate photoreception. While photoreception in hagfishes appears to be based on light detection and controlling circadian rhythms, rather than image formation, the photoreceptors of lampreys fall into five distinct classes and represent a critical stage in the dichotomy of rods and cones. At least four types of retinal cones sample the visual environment in lampreys mediating photopic (and potentially colour) vision, a sampling strategy retained by lungfishes, some modern teleosts, reptiles and birds. Trichromacy is retained in cartilaginous fishes (at least in batoids and holocephalans), where it is predicted that true scotopic (dim light) vision evolved in the common ancestor of all living gnathostomes. The capacity to discriminate colour and balance the tradeoff between resolution and sensitivity in the early vertebrates was an important driver of eye evolution, where many of the ocular features evolved were retained as vertebrates progressed on to land.

  10. Vertebral fractures in males with prolactinoma.

    PubMed

    Mazziotti, Gherardo; Porcelli, Teresa; Mormando, Marilda; De Menis, Ernesto; Bianchi, Antonio; Mejia, Carola; Mancini, Tatiana; De Marinis, Laura; Giustina, Andrea

    2011-06-01

    Data on osteoporotic fractures in hyperprolactinemia are limited. An increased prevalence of radiological vertebral fractures was recently observed in women with prolactin (PRL)-secreting adenoma, whereas it is unknown whether this observation may reflect a more general increased risk of fractures in this disease and whether the prevalence of fractures in males is affected by gonadal status. Thirty-two males (median age 47 years, range: 22-79) with PRL-secreting pituitary adenoma (10 with microadenoma and 22 with macroadenoma) and 64 control males, with normal PRL values and with comparable age to patients with hyperprolactinemia, were evaluated for vertebral fractures by a morphometric approach and for bone mineral density (BMD) by a dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry at lumbar spine. Vertebral fractures were shown in 12 patients with PRL-secreting adenoma (37.5%) and in 5 controls (7.8%, P < 0.001). Fractured patients had lower BMD T-score (P = 0.007) and longer duration of disease (P < 0.001) as compared to patients who did not fracture. Fractures occurred more frequently (P = 0.03) in patients with untreated hyperprolactinemia versus patients treated with cabergoline whose frequency of vertebral fractures was still higher than control subjects. The prevalence of vertebral fractures was not significantly different between eugonadal and hypogonadal patients (33.3% vs. 38.5%; P = 0.8). Moreover, no significant (P = 0.4) difference in serum testosterone values was found between fractured and not fractured males. Hyperprolactinemia is associated with high prevalence of radiological vertebral fractures in men with PRL-secreting adenoma. These findings would also suggest that PRL excess may produce negative skeletal effects independently of hypogonadism.

  11. The evolution of vertebrate color vision.

    PubMed

    Jacobs, Gerald H

    2012-01-01

    Color vision is conventionally defined as the ability of animals to reliably discriminate among objects and lights based solely on differences in their spectral properties. Although the nature of color vision varies widely in different animals, a large majority of all vertebrate species possess some color vision and that fact attests to the adaptive importance this capacity holds as a tool for analyzing the environment. In recent years dramatic advances have been made in our understanding of the nature of vertebrate color vision and of the evolution of the biological mechanisms underlying this capacity. In this chapter I review and comment on these advances.

  12. Roles for FGF in lamprey pharyngeal pouch formation and skeletogenesis highlight ancestral functions in the vertebrate head.

    PubMed

    Jandzik, David; Hawkins, M Brent; Cattell, Maria V; Cerny, Robert; Square, Tyler A; Medeiros, Daniel M

    2014-02-01

    A defining feature of vertebrates (craniates) is a pronounced head supported and protected by a cellularized endoskeleton. In jawed vertebrates (gnathostomes), the head skeleton is made of rigid three-dimensional elements connected by joints. By contrast, the head skeleton of modern jawless vertebrates (agnathans) consists of thin rods of flexible cellular cartilage, a condition thought to reflect the ancestral vertebrate state. To better understand the origin and evolution of the gnathostome head skeleton, we have been analyzing head skeleton development in the agnathan, lamprey. The fibroblast growth factors FGF3 and FGF8 have various roles during head development in jawed vertebrates, including pharyngeal pouch morphogenesis, patterning of the oral skeleton and chondrogenesis. We isolated lamprey homologs of FGF3, FGF8 and FGF receptors and asked whether these functions are ancestral features of vertebrate development or gnathostome novelties. Using gene expression and pharmacological agents, we found that proper formation of the lamprey head skeleton requires two phases of FGF signaling: an early phase during which FGFs drive pharyngeal pouch formation, and a later phase when they directly regulate skeletal differentiation and patterning. In the context of gene expression and functional studies in gnathostomes, our results suggest that these roles for FGFs arose in the first vertebrates and that the evolution of the jaw and gnathostome cellular cartilage was driven by changes developmentally downstream from pharyngeal FGF signaling.

  13. Response of thoracolumbar vertebral bodies to high rate compressive loading - biomed 2013.

    PubMed

    Dooley, C J; Wester, B A; Wing, I D; Voo, L M; Armiger, R S; Merkle, A C

    2013-01-01

    Underbody blast (UBB) events created by improvised explosive devices are threats to warfighter survivability. High intensity blast waves emitted from these devices transfer large forces through vehicle structures to occupants, often resulting in injuries including debilitating spinal fractures. The vertical loading vector through the spine generates significant compressive forces at high strain rates. To better understand injury mechanisms and ultimately better protect vehicle occupants against UBB attacks, high-fidelity computational models are being developed to predict the human response to dynamic loading characteristic of these events. This effort details the results from a series of 23 high-rate compression tests on vertebral body specimen. A high-rate servo-hydraulic test system applied a range of compressive loading rates (.01 mm/s to 1238 mm/s) to vertebral bodies in the thoracolumbar region (T7-L5). The force-deflection curves generated indicate rate dependent sensitivity of vertebral stiffness, ultimate load and ultimate deflection. Specimen subjected to high-rate dynamic loading to failure experienced critical structural damage at 5.5% ± 2.1% deflection. Compared to quasi-static loading, vertebral bodies had greater stiffness, greater force to failure, and lower ultimate failure deflection at high rates. Post-failure, an average loss in height of 15% was observed, along with a mean reduction in strength of 48%. The resulting data from these tests will allow for enhanced biofidelity of computational models by characterizing the vertebral stiffness response and ultimate deflection at rates representative of UBB events.

  14. Transposon-mediated Genome Manipulations in Vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Ivics, Zoltán; Li, Meng Amy; Mátés, Lajos; Boeke, Jef D.; Bradley, Allan; Izsvák, Zsuzsanna

    2010-01-01

    Transposable elements are segments of DNA with the unique ability to move about in the genome. This inherent feature can be exploited to harness these elements as gene vectors for diverse genome manipulations. Transposon-based genetic strategies have been established in vertebrate species over the last decade, and current progress in this field indicates that transposable elements will serve as indispensable tools in the genetic toolkit of vertebrate models. In particular, transposons can be applied as vectors for somatic and germline transgenesis, and as insertional mutagens in both loss-of-function and gain-of-function forward mutagenesis screens. The major advantage of using transposons as genetic tools is that they facilitate analysis of gene function in an easy, controlled and scalable manner. Transposon-based technologies are beginning to be exploited to link sequence information to gene functions in vertebrate models. In this article, we provide an overview of transposon-based methods used in vertebrate model organisms, and highlight the most important considerations concerning genetic applications of the transposon systems. PMID:19478801

  15. Vertebral choristoma in lipomyelomeningocele: a case report.

    PubMed

    Joshua, S P; Singh, Pankaj Kumar; Mahapatra, A K

    2012-01-01

    Lipomeningocele is a type of occult spinal dysraphism characterized by a subcutaneous lipomatous mass that protrudes through a midline bony defect. We report a rare presentation of this condition--a vertebral choristoma wherein the lipomatous mass displaced the normally formed posterior elements--lamina and spinous process of L4 vertebra dorsally to an abnormal location in the absence of a bony defect.

  16. Vertebral osteomyelitis due to Staphylococcus lugdunensis.

    PubMed Central

    Murdoch, D R; Everts, R J; Chambers, S T; Cowan, I A

    1996-01-01

    We present the first reported case of vertebral osteomyelitis due to Staphylococcus lugdunensis. The infection occurred in an 80-year-old woman who had been taking glucocorticosteroids. S. lugdunensis is a coagulase-negative staphylococcus with considerable potential as a human pathogen. Isolation of this organism should be regarded as significant unless evidence suggests otherwise. PMID:8815128

  17. [Sex inversion and epigenetic regulation in Vertebrates].

    PubMed

    Trukhina, A V; Lukina, N A; Nekrasova, A A; Smirnov, A F

    2015-03-01

    This review discusses issues related to the regulation of sex determination and differentiation in various groups of Vertebrates. Special attention was paid to factors of external and internal control for various genetic systems of sex determination, as well as to the epigenetic control of this process. Opportunities for sex inversion in various animals were also discussed.

  18. Diagnosis and Management of Vertebral Compression Fractures.

    PubMed

    McCarthy, Jason; Davis, Amy

    2016-07-01

    Vertebral compression fractures (VCFs) are the most common complication of osteoporosis, affecting more than 700,000 Americans annually. Fracture risk increases with age, with four in 10 white women older than 50 years experiencing a hip, spine, or vertebral fracture in their lifetime. VCFs can lead to chronic pain, disfigurement, height loss, impaired activities of daily living, increased risk of pressure sores, pneumonia, and psychological distress. Patients with an acute VCF may report abrupt onset of back pain with position changes, coughing, sneezing, or lifting. Physical examination findings are often normal, but can demonstrate kyphosis and midline spine tenderness. More than two-thirds of patients are asymptomatic and diagnosed incidentally on plain radiography. Acute VCFs may be treated with analgesics such as acetaminophen, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, narcotics, and calcitonin. Physicians must be mindful of medication adverse effects in older patients. Other conservative therapeutic options include limited bed rest, bracing, physical therapy, nerve root blocks, and epidural injections. Percutaneous vertebral augmentation, including vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty, is controversial, but can be considered in patients with inadequate pain relief with nonsurgical care or when persistent pain substantially affects quality of life. Family physicians can help prevent vertebral fractures through management of risk factors and the treatment of osteoporosis. PMID:27386723

  19. Pleistocene vertebrates of the Yukon Territory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harington, C. R.

    2011-08-01

    Unglaciated parts of the Yukon constitute one of the most important areas in North America for yielding Pleistocene vertebrate fossils. Nearly 30 vertebrate faunal localities are reviewed spanning a period of about 1.6 Ma (million years ago) to the close of the Pleistocene some 10 000 BP (radiocarbon years before present, taken as 1950). The vertebrate fossils represent at least 8 species of fishes, 1 amphibian, 41 species of birds and 83 species of mammals. Dominant among the large mammals are: steppe bison ( Bison priscus), horse ( Equus sp.), woolly mammoth ( Mammuthus primigenius), and caribou ( Rangifer tarandus) - signature species of the Mammoth Steppe fauna ( Fig. 1), which was widespread from the British Isles, through northern Europe, and Siberia to Alaska, Yukon and adjacent Northwest Territories. The Yukon faunas extend from Herschel Island in the north to Revenue Creek in the south and from the Alaskan border in the west to Ketza River in the east. The Yukon holds evidence of the earliest-known people in North America. Artifacts made from bison, mammoth and caribou bones from Bluefish Caves, Old Crow Basin and Dawson City areas show that people had a substantial knowledge of making and using bone tools at least by 25 000 BP, and possibly as early as 40 000 BP. A suggested chronological sequence of Yukon Pleistocene vertebrates ( Table 1) facilitates comparison of selected faunas and indicates the known duration of various taxa.

  20. Control of Vertebrate Pests of Agricultural Crops.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wingard, Robert G.; Studholme, Clinton R.

    This agriculture extension service publication of Pennsylvania State University discusses the damage from and control of vertebrate pests. Specific discussions describe the habits, habitat, and various control measures for blackbirds and crows, deer, meadow and pine mice, European starlings, and woodchucks. Where confusion with non-harmful species…

  1. A Cambrian origin for vertebrate rods

    PubMed Central

    Asteriti, Sabrina; Grillner, Sten; Cangiano, Lorenzo

    2015-01-01

    Vertebrates acquired dim-light vision when an ancestral cone evolved into the rod photoreceptor at an unknown stage preceding the last common ancestor of extant jawed vertebrates (∼420 million years ago Ma). The jawless lampreys provide a unique opportunity to constrain the timing of this advance, as their line diverged ∼505 Ma and later displayed high-morphological stability. We recorded with patch electrodes the inner segment photovoltages and with suction electrodes the outer segment photocurrents of Lampetra fluviatilis retinal photoreceptors. Several key functional features of jawed vertebrate rods are present in their phylogenetically homologous photoreceptors in lamprey: crucially, the efficient amplification of the effect of single photons, measured by multiple parameters, and the flow of rod signals into cones. These results make convergent evolution in the jawless and jawed vertebrate lines unlikely and indicate an early origin of rods, implying strong selective pressure toward dim-light vision in Cambrian ecosystems. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.07166.001 PMID:26095697

  2. A comparative analysis of vertebrate sex determination.

    PubMed

    Sinclair, Andrew; Smith, Craig; Western, Patrick; McClive, Peter

    2002-01-01

    Sex determination in vertebrates is controlled by a variety of mechanisms. We compared the expression of SF1, DAX1, DMRT1, SOX9 and AMH during gonadogenesis in the mouse, chicken and alligator embryo. In contrast to the expression profile of Sf1 in mouse embryos, chicken and alligator embryos show higher levels of Sf1 expression in the developing ovaries compared to testes. This may reflect the higher level of sex hormone synthesis in the ovary compared to the testis in chickens and alligators. The DAX1 gene has a similar expression profile in all three vertebrate species but appears to have different gene structure. As in mouse, DMRT1 was expressed at very high levels in the chicken and alligator male gonad. The male-specific up-regulation of SOX9 expression appears to be a common feature in all three vertebrates. In the chicken and alligator AMH is expressed prior to SOX9, suggesting that in these species SOX9 cannot initiate AMH expression as it does in mammals. SOX9 acts at multiple points in the vertebrate testis pathway but it appears that only some of these functions have been conserved through evolution. PMID:11990786

  3. Vertebrate Pest Control. Sale Publication 4077.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stimmann, M. W.; Clark, Dell O.

    This guide gives descriptions of common vertebrate pests and guidelines for using some common pesticides. The pests discussed are rats, mice, bats, moles, muskrats, ground squirrels, and gophers. Information is given for each pest on the type of damage the pest can do, the habitat and biology of the pest, and the most effective control methods.…

  4. De novo synthesis of a sunscreen compound in vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Osborn, Andrew R; Almabruk, Khaled H; Holzwarth, Garrett; Asamizu, Shumpei; LaDu, Jane; Kean, Kelsey M; Karplus, P Andrew; Tanguay, Robert L; Bakalinsky, Alan T; Mahmud, Taifo

    2015-01-01

    Ultraviolet-protective compounds, such as mycosporine-like amino acids (MAAs) and related gadusols produced by some bacteria, fungi, algae, and marine invertebrates, are critical for the survival of reef-building corals and other marine organisms exposed to high-solar irradiance. These compounds have also been found in marine fish, where their accumulation is thought to be of dietary or symbiont origin. In this study, we report the unexpected discovery that fish can synthesize gadusol de novo and that the analogous pathways are also present in amphibians, reptiles, and birds. Furthermore, we demonstrate that engineered yeast containing the fish genes can produce and secrete gadusol. The discovery of the gadusol pathway in vertebrates provides a platform for understanding its role in these animals, and the possibility of engineering yeast to efficiently produce a natural sunscreen and antioxidant presents an avenue for its large-scale production for possible use in pharmaceuticals and cosmetics. PMID:25965179

  5. [Gas dissection of the vertebral body or the vertebral intrasomatic space phenomenon. Physiopathological arguments].

    PubMed

    Michel, J L; Bouzat, J; Rivoal, A; de Pradel de Lamaze, P; Viallet, J F; Belin, J; Merle, P

    1982-01-01

    Some features concerning the ischemic origin of the gaseous dissection of the vertebral body and the physiopathology of the necrose, are considered in the adult: --in the way, the anterior topography of vaccum phenomenon is on the model of the arterial distribution in the vertebral body, implying ischemic origin of gaseous dissection; --further, two cases of intravertebral vaccum cleft, noticed after minor trauma, suggest the major role of fractures at the origin of ischemia.

  6. Vertebral body stenting: a new method for vertebral augmentation versus kyphoplasty

    PubMed Central

    Martin, Heiner; Fuerderer, Sebastian; Gabl, Michael; Roeder, Christoph; Heini, Paul; Mittlmeier, Thomas

    2010-01-01

    Vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty are well-established minimally invasive treatment options for compression fractures of osteoporotic vertebral bodies. Possible procedural disadvantages, however, include incomplete fracture reduction or a significant loss of reduction after balloon tamp deflation, prior to cement injection. A new procedure called “vertebral body stenting” (VBS) was tested in vitro and compared to kyphoplasty. VBS uses a specially designed catheter-mounted stent which can be implanted and expanded inside the vertebral body. As much as 24 fresh frozen human cadaveric vertebral bodies (T11-L5) were utilized. After creating typical compression fractures, the vertebral bodies were reduced by kyphoplasty (n = 12) or by VBS (n = 12) and then stabilized with PMMA bone cement. Each step of the procedure was performed under fluoroscopic control and analysed quantitatively. Finally, static and dynamic biomechanical tests were performed. A complete initial reduction of the fractured vertebral body height was achieved by both systems. There was a significant loss of reduction after balloon deflation in kyphoplasty compared to VBS, and a significant total height gain by VBS (mean ± SD in %, p < 0.05, demonstrated by: anterior height loss after deflation in relation to preoperative height [kyphoplasty: 11.7 ± 6.2; VBS: 3.7 ± 3.8], and total anterior height gain [kyphoplasty: 8.0 ± 9.4; VBS: 13.3 ± 7.6]). Biomechanical tests showed no significant stiffness and failure load differences between systems. VBS is an innovative technique which allows for the possibly complete reduction of vertebral compression fractures and helps maintain the restored height by means of a stent. The height loss after balloon deflation is significantly decreased by using VBS compared to kyphoplasty, thus offering a new promising option for vertebral augmentation. PMID:20191393

  7. Determination of vertebral pose in 3D by minimization of vertebral asymmetry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vrtovec, Tomaž; Pernuš, Franjo; Likar, Boštjan

    2011-03-01

    The vertebral pose in three dimensions (3D) may provide valuable information for quantitative clinical measurements or aid the initialization of image analysis techniques. We propose a method for automated determination of the vertebral pose in 3D that, in an iterative registration scheme, estimates the position and rotation of the vertebral coordinate system in 3D images. By searching for the hypothetical points, which are located where the boundaries of anatomical structures would have maximal symmetrical correspondences when mirrored over the vertebral planes, the asymmetry of vertebral anatomical structures is minimized. The method was evaluated on 14 normal and 14 scoliotic vertebrae in images acquired by computed tomography (CT). For each vertebra, 1000 randomly initialized experiments were performed. The results show that the vertebral pose can be successfully determined in 3D with mean accuracy of 0.5mm and 0.6° and mean precision of 0.17mm and 0.17. according to the 3D position and 3D rotation, respectively.

  8. Pneumococcal Vertebral Osteomyelitis after Epidural Injection: A Rare Event

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Tamara M; Chitturi, Chandrika; Lange, Michael; Suh, Jin S; Slim, Jihad

    2016-01-01

    Streptococcus pneumoniae vertebral infections have rarely been reported. Herein, we report a case of pneumococcal vertebral osteomyelitis with paraspinal and epidural abscesses as well as concomitant bacteremia following epidural injection. This will be the second case in the literature reporting pneumococcal vertebral osteomyelitis related to epidural manipulation. PMID:27621563

  9. Pneumococcal Vertebral Osteomyelitis after Epidural Injection: A Rare Event.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Tamara M; Chitturi, Chandrika; Lange, Michael; Suh, Jin S; Slim, Jihad

    2016-01-01

    Streptococcus pneumoniae vertebral infections have rarely been reported. Herein, we report a case of pneumococcal vertebral osteomyelitis with paraspinal and epidural abscesses as well as concomitant bacteremia following epidural injection. This will be the second case in the literature reporting pneumococcal vertebral osteomyelitis related to epidural manipulation. PMID:27621563

  10. The variety of vertebrate mechanisms of sex determination.

    PubMed

    Trukhina, Antonina V; Lukina, Natalia A; Wackerow-Kouzova, Natalia D; Smirnov, Alexander F

    2013-01-01

    The review deals with features of sex determination in vertebrates. The mechanisms of sex determination are compared between fishes, amphibians, reptilians, birds, and mammals. We focus on structural and functional differences in the role of sex-determining genes in different vertebrates. Special attention is paid to the role of estrogens in sex determination in nonmammalian vertebrates. PMID:24369014

  11. Vertebral Augmentation Involving Vertebroplasty or Kyphoplasty for Cancer-Related Vertebral Compression Fractures: An Economic Analysis

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Background Untreated vertebral compression fractures can have serious clinical consequences and impose a considerable impact on patients' quality of life and on caregivers. Since non-surgical management of these fractures has limited effectiveness, vertebral augmentation procedures are gaining acceptance in clinical practice for pain control and fracture stabilization. The objective of this analysis was to determine the cost-effectiveness and budgetary impact of kyphoplasty or vertebroplasty compared with non-surgical management for the treatment of vertebral compression fractures in patients with cancer. Methods We performed a systematic review of health economic studies to identify relevant studies that compare the cost-effectiveness of kyphoplasty or vertebroplasty with non-surgical management for the treatment of vertebral compression fractures in adults with cancer. We also performed a primary cost-effectiveness analysis to assess the clinical benefits and costs of kyphoplasty or vertebroplasty compared with non-surgical management in the same population. We developed a Markov model to forecast benefits and harms of treatments, and corresponding quality-adjusted life years and costs. Clinical data and utility data were derived from published sources, while costing data were derived using Ontario administrative sources. We performed sensitivity analyses to examine the robustness of the results. In addition, a 1-year budget impact analysis was performed using data from Ontario administrative sources. Two scenarios were explored: (a) an increase in the total number of vertebral augmentation procedures performed among patients with cancer in Ontario, maintaining the current proportion of kyphoplasty versus vertebroplasty; and (b) no increase in the total number of vertebral augmentation procedures performed among patients with cancer in Ontario but an increase in the proportion of kyphoplasties versus vertebroplasties. Results The base case considered each of

  12. Vertebral Augmentation Involving Vertebroplasty or Kyphoplasty for Cancer-Related Vertebral Compression Fractures: A Systematic Review

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Background Cancers that metastasize to the spine and primary cancers such as multiple myeloma can result in vertebral compression fractures or instability. Conservative strategies, including bed rest, bracing, and analgesic use, can be ineffective, resulting in continued pain and progressive functional disability limiting mobility and self-care. Surgery is not usually an option for cancer patients in advanced disease states because of their poor medical health or functional status and limited life expectancy. The objectives of this review were to evaluate the effectiveness and safety of percutaneous image-guided vertebral augmentation techniques, vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty, for palliation of cancer-related vertebral compression fractures. Methods We performed a systematic literature search for studies on vertebral augmentation of cancer-related vertebral compression fractures published from January 1, 2000, to October 2014; abstracts were screened by a single reviewer. For those studies meeting the eligibility criteria, full-text articles were obtained. Owing to the heterogeneity of the clinical reports, we performed a narrative synthesis based on an analytical framework constructed for the type of cancer-related vertebral fractures and the diversity of the vertebral augmentation interventions. Results The evidence review identified 3,391 citations, of which 111 clinical reports (4,235 patients) evaluated the effectiveness of vertebroplasty (78 reports, 2,545 patients) or kyphoplasty (33 reports, 1,690 patients) for patients with mixed primary spinal metastatic cancers, multiple myeloma, or hemangiomas. Overall the mean pain intensity scores often reported within 48 hours of vertebral augmentation (kyphoplasty or vertebroplasty), were significantly reduced. Analgesic use, although variably reported, usually involved parallel decreases, particularly in opioids, and mean pain-related disability scores were also significantly improved. In a randomized controlled

  13. Vertebral destruction due to abdominal aortic aneurysm

    PubMed Central

    Jiménez Viseu Pinheiro, J.F.; Blanco Blanco, J.F.; Pescador Hernández, D.; García García, F.J.

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Low back pain is a common cause of medical consultation, and usually supposes a non-malignant prognostic. Presentation of case We report an atypical appearance of low back pain associated to shock and pulsatile abdominal mass that made us diagnose an abdominal aortic aneurysm as reason of vertebral lysis and pain. Discusion Surgical repair of contained AAA should be directed to secondary re-rupture prevention, with an approximate survival near to 100% at selected patients for elective surgery. Consequently, orthopedic surgery for back spine stabilization has to be elective in those cases when vertebral destruction is above 30% and clinic is directly related to spine instability. Conclusion We should consider AAA as other cause of low back pain and routinely examine the abdomen and seek complementary imaging proves when risk factors for AAA are present. PMID:25569196

  14. Patterns and Processes of Vertebrate Evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carroll, Robert Lynn

    1997-04-01

    This new text provides an integrated view of the forces that influence the patterns and rates of vertebrate evolution from the level of living populations and species to those that resulted in the origin of the major vertebrate groups. The evolutionary roles of behavior, development, continental drift, and mass extinctions are compared with the importance of variation and natural selection that were emphasized by Darwin. It is extensively illustrated, showing major transitions between fish and amphibians, dinosaurs and birds, and land mammals to whales. No book since Simpson's Major Features of Evolution has attempted such a broad study of the patterns and forces of evolutionary change. Undergraduate students taking a general or advanced course on evolution, and graduate students and professionals in evolutionary biology and paleontology will find the book of great interest.

  15. Acute compressive myelopathy due to vertebral haemangioma.

    PubMed

    Macki, Mohamed; Bydon, Mohamad; Kaloostian, Paul; Bydon, Ali

    2014-04-28

    A 47-year-old woman with a history of anaemia presented to the emergency room with an acute onset of leg weakness. Physical examination of the bilateral lower extremities was significant for 0/5 muscle strength in all muscle groups with decreased pinprick and temperature sensation. A sensory level at the umbilicus was appreciated. Fine touch and proprioception were preserved. Bowel and bladder function were intact. CT revealed several thoracic, vertebral haemangiomatas. An MRI was suggestive of an epidural clot at the T8-T10-weighted posterior epidural space. At the level of the lesion, the cerebrospinal fluid space was completely effaced, and the flattened spinal cord exhibited signs of oedema and compressive myelopathy. The patient immediately underwent surgical decompression of the spinal cord. An epidural clot and vessel conglomeration were identified. A postoperative spinal angiogram confirmed the diagnosis of vertebral haemangioma. At 1-month follow-up, the patient regained strength and sensation.

  16. Brain size varies with temperature in vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Gillooly, James F; McCoy, Michael W

    2014-01-01

    The tremendous variation in brain size among vertebrates has long been thought to be related to differences in species' metabolic rates. It is thought that species with higher metabolic rates can supply more energy to support the relatively high cost of brain tissue. And yet, while body temperature is known to be a major determinant of metabolic rate, the possible effects of temperature on brain size have scarcely been explored. Thus, here we explore the effects of temperature on brain size among diverse vertebrates (fishes, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals). We find that, after controlling for body size, brain size increases exponentially with temperature in much the same way as metabolic rate. These results suggest that temperature-dependent changes in aerobic capacity, which have long been known to affect physical performance, similarly affect brain size. The observed temperature-dependence of brain size may explain observed gradients in brain size among both ectotherms and endotherms across broad spatial and temporal scales.

  17. Miocene vertebrates and North Florida shorelines

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Olsen, S.J.

    1968-01-01

    Vertebrate fossils from ten localities, spread across northern Florida, give evidence of shorelines and deltas that have previously been established on geologic evidence or invertebrates alone. Terrestrial mammal remains, in association with shallow-water forms, indicate a deltaic assemblage and in several instances specific animals suggest restricted water depths at the time of sediment deposition. Fortunately diagnostic fragments of Miocene horses, Merychippus and Parahippus, are present in these beds, allowing for a rather close age evaluation of these sediments. Adequate fossil material has been collected from these localities to suggest the past environment and ecological conditions for the forms represented. By utilizing a suggested course of experiments with stream table apparatus it is possible to use the orientation of the fossil vertebrate remains as aids in determining past conditions of sediment accumulation. ?? 1968.

  18. Population momentum across vertebrate life histories

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Koons, D.N.; Grand, J.B.; Arnold, J.M.

    2006-01-01

    Population abundance is critically important in conservation, management, and demographic theory. Thus, to better understand how perturbations to the life history affect long-term population size, we examined population momentum for four vertebrate classes with different life history strategies. In a series of demographic experiments we show that population momentum generally has a larger effect on long-term population size for organisms with long generation times than for organisms with short generation times. However, patterns between population momentum and generation time varied across taxonomic groups and according to the life history parameter that was changed. Our findings indicate that momentum may be an especially important aspect of population dynamics for long-lived vertebrates, and deserves greater attention in life history studies. Further, we discuss the importance of population momentum in natural resource management, pest control, and conservation arenas. ?? 2006 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Turning Heads: Development of Vertebrate Branchiomotor Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Chandrasekhar, Anand

    2007-01-01

    The cranial motor neurons innervate muscles that control eye, jaw, and facial movements of the vertebrate head and parasympathetic neurons that innervate certain glands and organs. These efferent neurons develop at characteristic locations in the brainstem, and their axons exit the neural tube in well-defined trajectories to innervate target tissues. This review is focused on a subset of cranial motor neurons called the branchiomotor neurons, which innervate muscles derived from the branchial (pharyngeal) arches. First, the organization of the branchiomotor pathways in zebrafish, chick, and mouse embryos will be compared, and the underlying axon guidance mechanisms will be addressed. Next, the molecular mechanisms that generate branchiomotor neurons and specify their identities will be discussed. Finally, the caudally directed or tangential migration of facial branchiomotor neurons will be examined. Given the advances in the characterization and analysis of vertebrate genomes, we can expect rapid progress in elucidating the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying the development of these vital neuronal networks. PMID:14699587

  20. Photoreceptor cell fate specification in vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Brzezinski, Joseph A.; Reh, Thomas A.

    2015-01-01

    Photoreceptors – the light-sensitive cells in the vertebrate retina – have been extremely well-characterized with regards to their biochemistry, cell biology and physiology. They therefore provide an excellent model for exploring the factors and mechanisms that drive neural progenitors into a differentiated cell fate in the nervous system. As a result, great progress in understanding the transcriptional network that controls photoreceptor specification and differentiation has been made over the last 20 years. This progress has also enabled the production of photoreceptors from pluripotent stem cells, thereby aiding the development of regenerative medical approaches to eye disease. In this Review, we outline the signaling and transcription factors that drive vertebrate photoreceptor development and discuss how these function together in gene regulatory networks to control photoreceptor cell fate specification. PMID:26443631

  1. Dynamic epithelia of the developing vertebrate face

    PubMed Central

    Choe, Chong Pyo; Crump, J. Gage

    2015-01-01

    A segmental series of endoderm-derived pouch and ectoderm-derived cleft epithelia act as signaling centers in the developing face. Their precise morphogenesis is therefore essential for proper patterning of the vertebrate head. Intercellular adhesion and polarity are highly dynamic within developing facial epithelial cells, with signaling from the adjacent mesenchyme controlling both epithelial character and directional migration. Endodermal and ectodermal epithelia fuse to form the primary mouth and gill slits, which involves basement membrane dissolution, cell intercalations, and apoptosis, as well as undergo further morphogenesis to generate the middle ear cavity and glands of the neck. Recent studies of facial epithelia are revealing both core programs of epithelial morphogenesis and insights into the coordinated assembly of the vertebrate head. PMID:25748249

  2. Transmission of ranavirus between ectothermic vertebrate hosts.

    PubMed

    Brenes, Roberto; Gray, Matthew J; Waltzek, Thomas B; Wilkes, Rebecca P; Miller, Debra L

    2014-01-01

    Transmission is an essential process that contributes to the survival of pathogens. Ranaviruses are known to infect different classes of lower vertebrates including amphibians, fishes and reptiles. Differences in the likelihood of infection among ectothermic vertebrate hosts could explain the successful yearlong persistence of ranaviruses in aquatic environments. The goal of this study was to determine if transmission of a Frog Virus 3 (FV3)-like ranavirus was possible among three species from different ectothermic vertebrate classes: Cope's gray treefrog (Hyla chrysoscelis) larvae, mosquito fish (Gambusia affinis), and red-eared slider (Trachemys scripta elegans). We housed individuals previously exposed to the FV3-like ranavirus with naïve (unexposed) individuals in containers divided by plastic mesh screen to permit water flow between subjects. Our results showed that infected gray treefrog larvae were capable of transmitting ranavirus to naïve larval conspecifics and turtles (60% and 30% infection, respectively), but not to fish. Also, infected turtles and fish transmitted ranavirus to 50% and 10% of the naïve gray treefrog larvae, respectively. Nearly all infected amphibians experienced mortality, whereas infected turtles and fish did not die. Our results demonstrate that ranavirus can be transmitted through water among ectothermic vertebrate classes, which has not been reported previously. Moreover, fish and reptiles might serve as reservoirs for ranavirus given their ability to live with subclinical infections. Subclinical infections of ranavirus in fish and aquatic turtles could contribute to the pathogen's persistence, especially when highly susceptible hosts like amphibians are absent as a result of seasonal fluctuations in relative abundance.

  3. Light sensitivity in a vertebrate mechanoreceptor?

    PubMed Central

    Baker, Gary E.; de Grip, Willem J.; Turton, Michael; Wagner, Hans-Joachim; Foster, Russell G.; Douglas, Ron H.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Using immunohistochemistry and western blot analysis, we demonstrate that melanopsin is localised in cells around the central pore of lateral line neuromasts in the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis. Since melanopsin is a known photoreceptor pigment with diverse functions in vertebrates, we suggest that the lateral line of Xenopus laevis, which is primarily a mechanoreceptor, might also be light sensitive. Potential functions of such photosensitivity are discussed, including its role in mediating locomotor responses following dermal illumination. PMID:26206352

  4. The Timing of Timezyme Diversification in Vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Cazaméa-Catalan, Damien; Besseau, Laurence; Falcón, Jack; Magnanou, Elodie

    2014-01-01

    All biological functions in vertebrates are synchronized with daily and seasonal changes in the environment by the time keeping hormone melatonin. Its nocturnal surge is primarily due to the rhythmic activity of the arylalkylamine N-acetyl transferase AANAT, which thus became the focus of many investigations regarding its evolution and function. Various vertebrate isoforms have been reported from cartilaginous fish to mammals but their origin has not been clearly established. Using phylogeny and synteny, we took advantage of the increasing number of available genomes in order to test whether the various rounds of vertebrate whole genome duplications were responsible for the diversification of AANAT. We highlight a gene secondary loss of the AANAT2 in the Sarcopterygii, revealing for the first time that the AAANAT1/2 duplication occurred before the divergence between Actinopterygii (bony fish) and Sarcopterygii (tetrapods, lobe-finned fish, and lungfish). We hypothesize the teleost-specific whole genome duplication (WDG) generated the appearance of the AANAT1a/1b and the AANAT2/2′paralogs, the 2′ isoform being rapidly lost in the teleost common ancestor (ray-finned fish). We also demonstrate the secondary loss of the AANAT1a in a Paracantopterygii (Atlantic cod) and of the 1b in some Ostariophysi (zebrafish and cave fish). Salmonids present an even more diverse set of AANATs that may be due to their specific WGD followed by secondary losses. We propose that vertebrate AANAT diversity resulted from 3 rounds of WGD followed by previously uncharacterized secondary losses. Extant isoforms show subfunctionalized localizations, enzyme activities and affinities that have increased with time since their emergence. PMID:25486407

  5. The timing of Timezyme diversification in vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Cazaméa-Catalan, Damien; Besseau, Laurence; Falcón, Jack; Magnanou, Elodie

    2014-01-01

    All biological functions in vertebrates are synchronized with daily and seasonal changes in the environment by the time keeping hormone melatonin. Its nocturnal surge is primarily due to the rhythmic activity of the arylalkylamine N-acetyl transferase AANAT, which thus became the focus of many investigations regarding its evolution and function. Various vertebrate isoforms have been reported from cartilaginous fish to mammals but their origin has not been clearly established. Using phylogeny and synteny, we took advantage of the increasing number of available genomes in order to test whether the various rounds of vertebrate whole genome duplications were responsible for the diversification of AANAT. We highlight a gene secondary loss of the AANAT2 in the Sarcopterygii, revealing for the first time that the AAANAT1/2 duplication occurred before the divergence between Actinopterygii (bony fish) and Sarcopterygii (tetrapods, lobe-finned fish, and lungfish). We hypothesize the teleost-specific whole genome duplication (WDG) generated the appearance of the AANAT1a/1b and the AANAT2/2'paralogs, the 2' isoform being rapidly lost in the teleost common ancestor (ray-finned fish). We also demonstrate the secondary loss of the AANAT1a in a Paracantopterygii (Atlantic cod) and of the 1b in some Ostariophysi (zebrafish and cave fish). Salmonids present an even more diverse set of AANATs that may be due to their specific WGD followed by secondary losses. We propose that vertebrate AANAT diversity resulted from 3 rounds of WGD followed by previously uncharacterized secondary losses. Extant isoforms show subfunctionalized localizations, enzyme activities and affinities that have increased with time since their emergence. PMID:25486407

  6. The immunoglobulins of cold-blooded vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Pettinello, Rita; Dooley, Helen

    2014-11-24

    Although lymphocyte-like cells secreting somatically-recombining receptors have been identified in the jawless fishes (hagfish and lamprey), the cartilaginous fishes (sharks, skates, rays and chimaera) are the most phylogenetically distant group relative to mammals in which bona fide immunoglobulins (Igs) have been found. Studies of the antibodies and humoral immune responses of cartilaginous fishes and other cold-blooded vertebrates (bony fishes, amphibians and reptiles) are not only revealing information about the emergence and roles of the different Ig heavy and light chain isotypes, but also the evolution of specialised adaptive features such as isotype switching, somatic hypermutation and affinity maturation. It is becoming increasingly apparent that while the adaptive immune response in these vertebrate lineages arose a long time ago, it is most definitely not primitive and has evolved to become complex and sophisticated. This review will summarise what is currently known about the immunoglobulins of cold-blooded vertebrates and highlight the differences, and commonalities, between these and more "conventional" mammalian species.

  7. The molecular biology of vertebrate olfaction.

    PubMed

    Hayden, Sara; Teeling, Emma C

    2014-11-01

    The importance of chemosensation for vertebrates is reflected in the vast and variable nature of their chemosensory tissues, neurons, and genes, which we explore in this review. Immense progress has been made in elucidating the molecular biology of olfaction since the discovery of the olfactory receptor genes by Buck and Axel, which eventually won the authors the Nobel Prize. In particular, research linking odor ligands to olfactory receptors (ORs) is truly revolutionizing our understanding of how a large but limited number of chemosensory receptors can allow us to perceive the massive diversity of odors in our habitat. This research is providing insight into the evolution of genomes and providing the raw data needed to explore links between genotype and phenotype, still a grand challenge in biology. Research into olfaction is still developing and will no doubt continue until we have a clear understanding of how all odors are detected and the evolutionary forces that have molded the chemosensory subgenome in vertebrates. This knowledge will not only be a huge step in elucidating olfactory function, advancing scientific knowledge and techniques, but there are also commercial applications for this research. This review focuses on the molecular basis of chemosensation, particularly olfaction, its evolution across vertebrates and the recent molecular advances linking odors to their cognate receptors. PMID:25312375

  8. Flapping wing aerodynamics: from insects to vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Chin, Diana D; Lentink, David

    2016-04-01

    More than a million insects and approximately 11,000 vertebrates utilize flapping wings to fly. However, flapping flight has only been studied in a few of these species, so many challenges remain in understanding this form of locomotion. Five key aerodynamic mechanisms have been identified for insect flight. Among these is the leading edge vortex, which is a convergent solution to avoid stall for insects, bats and birds. The roles of the other mechanisms - added mass, clap and fling, rotational circulation and wing-wake interactions - have not yet been thoroughly studied in the context of vertebrate flight. Further challenges to understanding bat and bird flight are posed by the complex, dynamic wing morphologies of these species and the more turbulent airflow generated by their wings compared with that observed during insect flight. Nevertheless, three dimensionless numbers that combine key flow, morphological and kinematic parameters - the Reynolds number, Rossby number and advance ratio - govern flapping wing aerodynamics for both insects and vertebrates. These numbers can thus be used to organize an integrative framework for studying and comparing animal flapping flight. Here, we provide a roadmap for developing such a framework, highlighting the aerodynamic mechanisms that remain to be quantified and compared across species. Ultimately, incorporating complex flight maneuvers, environmental effects and developmental stages into this framework will also be essential to advancing our understanding of the biomechanics, movement ecology and evolution of animal flight. PMID:27030773

  9. Effects of hypoxia on vertebrate blood vessels.

    PubMed

    Russell, Michael J; Dombkowski, Ryan A; Olson, Kenneth R

    2008-03-01

    Hypoxia contracts mammalian respiratory vessels and increases vascular resistance in respiratory tissues of many vertebrates. In systemic vessels these responses vary, hypoxia relaxes mammalian vessels and contracts systemic arteries from cyclostomes. It has been proposed that hypoxic vasoconstriction in cyclostome systemic arteries is the antecedent to mammalian hypoxic pulmonary vasoconstriction, however, phylogenetic characterization of hypoxic responses is lacking. In this study, we characterized the hypoxic response of isolated systemic and respiratory vessels from a variety of vertebrates using standard myography. Pre-gill/respiratory (ventral aorta, afferent branchial artery, pulmonary artery) and post-gill/systemic (dorsal and thoracic aortas, efferent branchial artery) from lamprey (Petromyzon marinus), sandbar shark (Carcharhinus plumbeus), yellowfin tuna (Thunnus albacares), American bullfrog (Rana catesbeiana), American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis), Pekin duck (Anas platyrhynchos domesticus), chicken (Gallus domesticus) and rat (Rattus norvegicus) were exposed to hypoxia at rest or during pre-stimulation (elevated extracellular potassium, epinephrine or norepinephrine). Hypoxia produced a relaxation or transient contraction followed by relaxation in all pre-gill vessels, except for contraction in lamprey, and vasoconstriction or tri-phasic constriction-dilation-constriction in all pulmonary vessels. Hypoxia contracted systemic vessels from all animals except shark and rat and in pre-contracted rat aortas it produced a transient contraction followed by relaxation. These results show that while the classic "systemic hypoxic vasodilation and pulmonary hypoxic vasoconstriction" may occur in the microcirculation, the hypoxic response of the vertebrate macrocirculation is quite variable. These findings also suggest that hypoxic vasoconstriction is a phylogenetically ancient response. PMID:18214862

  10. The immunoglobulins of cold-blooded vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Pettinello, Rita; Dooley, Helen

    2014-01-01

    Although lymphocyte-like cells secreting somatically-recombining receptors have been identified in the jawless fishes (hagfish and lamprey), the cartilaginous fishes (sharks, skates, rays and chimaera) are the most phylogenetically distant group relative to mammals in which bona fide immunoglobulins (Igs) have been found. Studies of the antibodies and humoral immune responses of cartilaginous fishes and other cold-blooded vertebrates (bony fishes, amphibians and reptiles) are not only revealing information about the emergence and roles of the different Ig heavy and light chain isotypes, but also the evolution of specialised adaptive features such as isotype switching, somatic hypermutation and affinity maturation. It is becoming increasingly apparent that while the adaptive immune response in these vertebrate lineages arose a long time ago, it is most definitely not primitive and has evolved to become complex and sophisticated. This review will summarise what is currently known about the immunoglobulins of cold-blooded vertebrates and highlight the differences, and commonalities, between these and more "conventional" mammalian species. PMID:25427250

  11. T-cell receptors in ectothermic vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Charlemagne, J; Fellah, J S; De Guerra, A; Kerfourn, F; Partula, S

    1998-12-01

    The structure and expression of genes encoding molecules homologous to mammalian T-cell receptors (TCR) have been recently studied in ectothermic vertebrate species representative of chondrychthians, teleosts, and amphibians. The overall TCR chain structure is well conserved in phylogeny: TCR beta- and TCR alpha-like chains were detected in all the species analyzed; TCR gamma- and TCR delta-like chains were also present in a chondrychthian species. The diversity potential of the variable (V) and joining (J) segments is rather large and, as in mammals, conserved diversity (D) segments are associated to the TCR beta and TCR delta chains. An important level of junctional diversity occurred at the V-(D)-J junctions, with the potential addition of N- and P-nucleotides. Thus, the conservation of the structure and of the potential of diversity of TCR molecules have been under a permanent selective pressure during vertebrate evolution. The structure of MHC class I and class II molecules was also well conserved in jawed vertebrates. TCR and MHC molecules are strongly functionally linked and play a determinant role in the initiation and the regulation of the specific immune responses; thus, it is not surprising that their structures have been reciprocally frozen during evolution. PMID:9914905

  12. Nestedness of Ectoparasite-Vertebrate Host Networks

    PubMed Central

    Graham, Sean P.; Hassan, Hassan K.; Burkett-Cadena, Nathan D.; Guyer, Craig; Unnasch, Thomas R.

    2009-01-01

    Determining the structure of ectoparasite-host networks will enable disease ecologists to better understand and predict the spread of vector-borne diseases. If these networks have consistent properties, then studying the structure of well-understood networks could lead to extrapolation of these properties to others, including those that support emerging pathogens. Borrowing a quantitative measure of network structure from studies of mutualistic relationships between plants and their pollinators, we analyzed 29 ectoparasite-vertebrate host networks—including three derived from molecular bloodmeal analysis of mosquito feeding patterns—using measures of nestedness to identify non-random interactions among species. We found significant nestedness in ectoparasite-vertebrate host lists for habitats ranging from tropical rainforests to polar environments. These networks showed non-random patterns of nesting, and did not differ significantly from published estimates of nestedness from mutualistic networks. Mutualistic and antagonistic networks appear to be organized similarly, with generalized ectoparasites interacting with hosts that attract many ectoparasites and more specialized ectoparasites usually interacting with these same “generalized” hosts. This finding has implications for understanding the network dynamics of vector-born pathogens. We suggest that nestedness (rather than random ectoparasite-host associations) can allow rapid transfer of pathogens throughout a network, and expand upon such concepts as the dilution effect, bridge vectors, and host switching in the context of nested ectoparasite-vertebrate host networks. PMID:19924299

  13. Fungal osteomyelitis with vertebral re-ossification

    PubMed Central

    O′Guinn, Devon J.; Serletis, Demitre; Kazemi, Noojan

    2015-01-01

    Introduction We present a rare case of thoracic vertebral osteomyelitis secondary to pulmonary Blastomyces dermatitides. Presentation of case A 27-year-old male presented with three months of chest pains and non-productive cough. Examination revealed diminished breath sounds on the right. CT/MR imaging confirmed a right-sided pre-/paravertebral soft tissue mass and destructive lytic lesions from T2 to T6. CT-guided needle biopsy confirmed granulomatous pulmonary Blastomycosis. Conservative management with antifungal therapy was initiated. Neurosurgical review confirmed no clinical or profound radiographic instability, and the patient was stabilized with TLSO bracing. Serial imaging 3 months later revealed near-resolution of the thoracic soft tissue mass, with vertebral re-ossification from T2 to T6. Discussion Fungal osteomyelitis presents a rare entity in the spectrum of spinal infections. In such cases, lytic spinal lesions are classically seen in association with a large paraspinous mass. Fungal infections of the spinal column may be treated conservatively, with surgical intervention reserved for progressive cases manifesting with neurological compromise and/or spinal column instability. Here, we found unexpected evidence for vertebral re-ossification across the affected thoracic levels (T2-6) in response to IV antibiotic therapy and conservative bracing, nearly 3 months later. PMID:26692163

  14. Flapping wing aerodynamics: from insects to vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Chin, Diana D; Lentink, David

    2016-04-01

    More than a million insects and approximately 11,000 vertebrates utilize flapping wings to fly. However, flapping flight has only been studied in a few of these species, so many challenges remain in understanding this form of locomotion. Five key aerodynamic mechanisms have been identified for insect flight. Among these is the leading edge vortex, which is a convergent solution to avoid stall for insects, bats and birds. The roles of the other mechanisms - added mass, clap and fling, rotational circulation and wing-wake interactions - have not yet been thoroughly studied in the context of vertebrate flight. Further challenges to understanding bat and bird flight are posed by the complex, dynamic wing morphologies of these species and the more turbulent airflow generated by their wings compared with that observed during insect flight. Nevertheless, three dimensionless numbers that combine key flow, morphological and kinematic parameters - the Reynolds number, Rossby number and advance ratio - govern flapping wing aerodynamics for both insects and vertebrates. These numbers can thus be used to organize an integrative framework for studying and comparing animal flapping flight. Here, we provide a roadmap for developing such a framework, highlighting the aerodynamic mechanisms that remain to be quantified and compared across species. Ultimately, incorporating complex flight maneuvers, environmental effects and developmental stages into this framework will also be essential to advancing our understanding of the biomechanics, movement ecology and evolution of animal flight.

  15. The Immunoglobulins of Cold-Blooded Vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Pettinello, Rita; Dooley, Helen

    2014-01-01

    Although lymphocyte-like cells secreting somatically-recombining receptors have been identified in the jawless fishes (hagfish and lamprey), the cartilaginous fishes (sharks, skates, rays and chimaera) are the most phylogenetically distant group relative to mammals in which bona fide immunoglobulins (Igs) have been found. Studies of the antibodies and humoral immune responses of cartilaginous fishes and other cold-blooded vertebrates (bony fishes, amphibians and reptiles) are not only revealing information about the emergence and roles of the different Ig heavy and light chain isotypes, but also the evolution of specialised adaptive features such as isotype switching, somatic hypermutation and affinity maturation. It is becoming increasingly apparent that while the adaptive immune response in these vertebrate lineages arose a long time ago, it is most definitely not primitive and has evolved to become complex and sophisticated. This review will summarise what is currently known about the immunoglobulins of cold-blooded vertebrates and highlight the differences, and commonalities, between these and more “conventional” mammalian species. PMID:25427250

  16. The molecular biology of vertebrate olfaction.

    PubMed

    Hayden, Sara; Teeling, Emma C

    2014-11-01

    The importance of chemosensation for vertebrates is reflected in the vast and variable nature of their chemosensory tissues, neurons, and genes, which we explore in this review. Immense progress has been made in elucidating the molecular biology of olfaction since the discovery of the olfactory receptor genes by Buck and Axel, which eventually won the authors the Nobel Prize. In particular, research linking odor ligands to olfactory receptors (ORs) is truly revolutionizing our understanding of how a large but limited number of chemosensory receptors can allow us to perceive the massive diversity of odors in our habitat. This research is providing insight into the evolution of genomes and providing the raw data needed to explore links between genotype and phenotype, still a grand challenge in biology. Research into olfaction is still developing and will no doubt continue until we have a clear understanding of how all odors are detected and the evolutionary forces that have molded the chemosensory subgenome in vertebrates. This knowledge will not only be a huge step in elucidating olfactory function, advancing scientific knowledge and techniques, but there are also commercial applications for this research. This review focuses on the molecular basis of chemosensation, particularly olfaction, its evolution across vertebrates and the recent molecular advances linking odors to their cognate receptors.

  17. FRAX and the effect of teriparatide on vertebral and non-vertebral fracture

    PubMed Central

    Harvey, Nicholas C; Kanis, John A; Odén, Anders; Burge, Russel T; Mitlak, Bruce H; Johansson, Helena; McCloskey, Eugene V

    2016-01-01

    Summary Daily teriparatide injections have been shown to reduce vertebral and non-vertebral fractures. Here we demonstrate that the magnitude of fracture risk reduction is independent of baseline fracture probability assessed by FRAX. Background Daily administration of 20μg or 40μg teriparatide has been shown to significantly decrease the risk of vertebral and non-vertebral fracture compared with placebo. The aim of the present study was to evaluate fracture risk assessed at baseline using the FRAX® tool and to determine the efficacy of teriparatide as a function of baseline fracture risk. Methods 1637 postmenopausal women in the pivotal phase 3 trial, randomly assigned to receive placebo (n=544), teriparatide 20 μg per day (n=541) or teriparatide 40 μg per day (n=552), were studied. Baseline clinical risk factors were entered into country-specific FRAX models to compute the 10-year probability of major osteoporotic fractures with or without input of femoral neck BMD. Because there was no difference in effect of 20 and 40μg teriparatide daily on fracture occurrence, the two active groups were merged. The interaction between probability of a major fracture and treatment efficacy was examined by Poisson regression. Results The 10-year probability of major osteoporotic fractures (with BMD) ranged from 2.2-67.2%. Treatment with teriparatide was associated with a 37% decrease in all non-vertebral fractures (95% CI:10-56 %) and a 56% decrease in low energy non-vertebral fractures (95% CI:24-75%) compared with placebo. The risk of morphometric vertebral fractures decreased significantly by 66% (95% CI:50-77%). Hazard ratios for the effect of teriparatide on the fracture outcome did not change significantly with increasing fracture probability (p>0.30). Similar findings were noted for the interaction when BMD was excluded from the FRAX model, or when probability of hip fracture was used as the marker of baseline risk. Conclusion We conclude that teriparatide

  18. Surgical treatment of aggressive vertebral hemangiomas.

    PubMed

    Vasudeva, Viren S; Chi, John H; Groff, Michael W

    2016-08-01

    OBJECTIVE Vertebral hemangiomas are common tumors that are benign and generally asymptomatic. Occasionally these lesions can exhibit aggressive features such as bony expansion and erosion into the epidural space resulting in neurological symptoms. Surgery is often recommended in these cases, especially if symptoms are severe or rapidly progressive. Some surgeons perform decompression alone, others perform gross-total resection, while others perform en bloc resection. Radiation, embolization, vertebroplasty, and ethanol injection have also been used in combination with surgery. Despite the variety of available treatment options, the optimal management strategy is unclear because aggressive vertebral hemangiomas are uncommon lesions, making it difficult to perform large trials. For this reason, the authors chose instead to report their institutional experience along with a comprehensive review of the literature. METHODS A departmental database was searched for patients with a pathological diagnosis of "hemangioma" between 2008 and 2015. Medical records were reviewed to identify patients with aggressive vertebral hemangiomas, and these cases were reviewed in detail. RESULTS Five patients were identified who underwent surgery for treatment of aggressive vertebral hemangiomas during the specified time period. There were 2 lumbar and 3 thoracic lesions. One patient underwent en bloc spondylectomy, 2 patients had piecemeal gross-total resection, and the remaining 2 had subtotal tumor resection. Intraoperative vertebroplasty was used in 3 cases to augment the anterior column or to obliterate residual tumor. Adjuvant radiation was used in 1 case where there was residual tumor as well. The patient who underwent en bloc spondylectomy experienced several postoperative complications requiring additional medical care and reoperation. At an average follow-up of 31 months (range 3-65 months), no patient had any recurrence of disease and all were clinically asymptomatic, except the

  19. Surgical treatment of aggressive vertebral hemangiomas.

    PubMed

    Vasudeva, Viren S; Chi, John H; Groff, Michael W

    2016-08-01

    OBJECTIVE Vertebral hemangiomas are common tumors that are benign and generally asymptomatic. Occasionally these lesions can exhibit aggressive features such as bony expansion and erosion into the epidural space resulting in neurological symptoms. Surgery is often recommended in these cases, especially if symptoms are severe or rapidly progressive. Some surgeons perform decompression alone, others perform gross-total resection, while others perform en bloc resection. Radiation, embolization, vertebroplasty, and ethanol injection have also been used in combination with surgery. Despite the variety of available treatment options, the optimal management strategy is unclear because aggressive vertebral hemangiomas are uncommon lesions, making it difficult to perform large trials. For this reason, the authors chose instead to report their institutional experience along with a comprehensive review of the literature. METHODS A departmental database was searched for patients with a pathological diagnosis of "hemangioma" between 2008 and 2015. Medical records were reviewed to identify patients with aggressive vertebral hemangiomas, and these cases were reviewed in detail. RESULTS Five patients were identified who underwent surgery for treatment of aggressive vertebral hemangiomas during the specified time period. There were 2 lumbar and 3 thoracic lesions. One patient underwent en bloc spondylectomy, 2 patients had piecemeal gross-total resection, and the remaining 2 had subtotal tumor resection. Intraoperative vertebroplasty was used in 3 cases to augment the anterior column or to obliterate residual tumor. Adjuvant radiation was used in 1 case where there was residual tumor as well. The patient who underwent en bloc spondylectomy experienced several postoperative complications requiring additional medical care and reoperation. At an average follow-up of 31 months (range 3-65 months), no patient had any recurrence of disease and all were clinically asymptomatic, except the

  20. A Classification System for the Spread of Polymethyl Methacrylate in Vertebral Bodies Treated with Vertebral Augmentation

    PubMed Central

    Frankl, Joseph; Sakata, Michael P.; Choudhary, Gagandeep; Hur, Seung; Peterson, Andrew; Hennemeyer, Charles T.

    2016-01-01

    In this study, we develop a classification system for describing polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) spread in vertebral bodies after kyphoplasty or vertebroplasty for vertebral compression fractures (VCFs) and for assessing whether PMMA spread varies between operators, VCF etiology, or vertebral level. Intraoperative fluoroscopic images of 198 vertebral levels were reviewed in 137 patients (women, 84; men, 53; mean age, 75.8 ± 12.5; and those with a diagnosis of osteoporosis, 63%) treated with kyphoplasty between January 01, 2015 and May 31, 2015 at a single center to create a 5-class descriptive system. PMMA spread patterns in the same images were then classified by 2 board-certified radiologists, and a third board-certified radiologist resolved conflicts. A total of 2 primary PMMA spread patterns were identified, namely, acinar and globular, with subtypes of localized acinar, diffuse globular, and mixed, to describe an equal combination of patterns. Interrater reliability using the system was moderate (κ = 0.47). After resolving conflicts, the most common spread class was globular (n = 63), followed by mixed (n = 58), diffuse globular (n = 30), acinar (n = 27), and localized acinar (n = 20). The spread class after treatment by the 2 most frequent operators differed significantly (n1 = 63, n2 = 70; P < .0001). There was no difference in the spread class between VCF etiologies or vertebral levels. PMMA spread may, therefore, be a modifiable parameter that affects kyphoplasty and vertebroplasty efficacy and adverse events. PMID:27795998

  1. Vertebrate MitBASE: a specialised database on vertebrate mitochondrial DNA sequences.

    PubMed

    Carone, A; Malladi, S B; Attimonelli, M; Saccone, C

    1999-01-01

    Vertebrate MitBASE is a specialized database where all the vertebrate mitochondrial DNA entries from primary databases are collected, revised and integrated with new information emerging from the literature. Variant sequences are also analyzed, aligned and linked to reference sequences. Data related to the same species and fragment can be viewed over the WWW. The database has a flexible interface and a retrieval system to help non-expert users and contains information not currently available in the primary databases. Vertebrate MitBASE is now available through the MitBASE home page at URL: http://www.ebi.ac.uk/htbin/Mitbase/mitb ase.pl. This work is part of a larger project, MitBASE which is a network of databases covering the full panorama of knowledge on mitochondrial DNA from protists to human sequences.

  2. Biochemistry below 0 degrees C: nature's frozen vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Storey, K B; Mosser, D D; Douglas, D N; Grundy, J E; Storey, J M

    1996-03-01

    Although alien to man, the ability to endure the freezing of extracellular body fluids during the winter has developed in several species of terrestrially hibernating frogs and turtles as well as in many species of insects and other invertebrates. Wood frogs, for example, can endure freezing for at least 2 weeks with no breathing, no heart beat or blood circulation, and with up to 65% of their total body water as ice. Our studies are providing a comprehensive view of the requirements for natural freezing survival and of the physical and metabolic protection that must be offered for effective cryopreservation of vertebrate organs. Molecular mechanisms of natural freeze tolerance in lower vertebrates include: 1) control over ice crystal growth in plasma by ice nucleating proteins, 2) the accumulation of low molecular weight cryoprotectants to minimize intracellular dehydration and stabilize macromolecular components, and 3) good ischemia tolerance by all organs that may include metabolic arrest mechanisms to reduce organ energy requirements while frozen. Cryomicroscopy of tissue slices and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of whole animals is revealing the natural mode of ice propagation through an organism. MRI has also revealed that thawing is non-uniform; core organs (with high cryoprotectant levels) melt first, facilitating the early resumption of heart beat and blood circulation. Studies of the production and actions of the natural cryoprotectant, glucose, in frogs have shown its importance in maintaining a critical minimum cell volume in frozen organs and new work on the metabolic effects of whole body dehydration in 3 species of frogs has indicated that adaptations supporting freeze tolerance grew out of mechanisms that deal with desiccation resistance in amphibians. Studies of the regulation of cryoprotectant glucose synthesis by wood frog liver have shown the role of protein kinases and of alpha and beta adrenergic receptors in regulating the glycemic

  3. Hypoxia and anoxia tolerance of vertebrate hearts: an evolutionary perspective.

    PubMed

    Tota, Bruno; Angelone, Tommaso; Mancardi, Daniele; Cerra, Maria Carmela

    2011-03-01

    Extreme changes in environmental oxygen (O(2)) is a constant issue that ectotherm vertebrates have to deal with, whereas for endotherms severe hypoxia and reoxygenation are usually related to a pathological state. The physiological mechanisms of hypoxia tolerance in ectotherms are based on biochemical evolutionary adaptations and may serve in understanding endogenous phenomena of protection against diminished O(2) availability in the heart. In this review, we will, therefore, describe different species of fish, amphibian, and reptile that are well-known examples of cardiac tolerance to O(2) deficiency. We will then focus on a subset of Antarctic fishes which have lost physiological transporters of O(2) such as hemoglobin and myoglobin (Mb) and that have reached a surprising adaptation to this extreme environment. Moreover, we will concentrate on the cardio-protective effects of the interaction between Mb and nitric oxide with particular emphasis on the nitrite-reductase function of Mb. Finally, the role of a recently described gasotransmitter, the free diffusible hydrogen sulfide, will be briefly discussed in relation to hypoxia. This evolutionary and comparative perspective may provide a useful and heuristic stimulus for medically oriented research aimed at elucidating the environmental and genetic risk factors underlying the vulnerability of the human heart.

  4. Early Bone Marrow Edema Pattern of the Osteoporotic Vertebral Compression Fracture : Can Be Predictor of Vertebral Deformity Types and Prognosis?

    PubMed Central

    Ahn, Sung Eun; Park, Ji Seon; Jin, Wook; Park, So Young; Kim, Sung Bum

    2016-01-01

    Objective To evaluate whether an early bone marrow edema pattern predicts vertebral deformity types and prognosis in osteoporotic vertebral compression fracture (OVCF). Methods This retrospective study enrolled 64 patients with 75 acute OVCFs who underwent early MRI and followed up MRI. On early MRI, the low SI pattern of OVCF on T1WI were assessed and classified into 3 types (diffuse, globular or patchy, band-like). On followed up MRI, the vertebral deformity types (anterior wedge, biconcave, crush), degree of vertebral body height loss, incidence of vertebral osteonecrosis and spinal stenosis were assessed for each vertebral fracture types. Results According to the early bone marrow edema pattern on T1WI, 26 vertebrae were type 1, 14 vertebrae were type 2 and 35 vertebrae were type 3. On followed up MRI, the crush-type vertebral deformity was most frequent among the type 1 OVCFs, the biconcave-type vertebral deformity was most frequent among the type 2 OVCFs and the anterior wedge-type vertebral deformity was most frequent among the type 3 OVCFs (p<0.001). In addition, type 1 early bone marrow edema pattern of OVCF on T1WI were associated with higher incidence of severe degree vertebral body height loss, vertebral osteonecrosis and spinal stenosis on the follow up MRI. Conclusion Early bone marrow edema pattern of OVCF on T1WI, significant correlated with vertebral deformity types on the follow up MRI. The severe degree of vertebral height loss, vertebral osteonecrosis, and spinal stenosis were more frequent in patients with diffuse low SI pattern. PMID:26962419

  5. Evolution of Vertebrate Phototransduction: Cascade Activation

    PubMed Central

    Lamb, Trevor D.; Patel, Hardip; Chuah, Aaron; Natoli, Riccardo C.; Davies, Wayne I. L.; Hart, Nathan S.; Collin, Shaun P.; Hunt, David M.

    2016-01-01

    We applied high-throughput sequencing to eye tissue from several species of basal vertebrates (a hagfish, two species of lamprey, and five species of gnathostome fish), and we analyzed the mRNA sequences for the proteins underlying activation of the phototransduction cascade. The molecular phylogenies that we constructed from these sequences are consistent with the 2R WGD model of two rounds of whole genome duplication. Our analysis suggests that agnathans retain an additional representative (that has been lost in gnathostomes) in each of the gene families we studied; the evidence is strong for the G-protein α subunit (GNAT) and the cGMP phosphodiesterase (PDE6), and indicative for the cyclic nucleotide-gated channels (CNGA and CNGB). Two of the species (the hagfish Eptatretus cirrhatus and the lamprey Mordacia mordax) possess only a single class of photoreceptor, simplifying deductions about the composition of cascade protein isoforms utilized in their photoreceptors. For the other lamprey, Geotria australis, analysis of the ratios of transcript levels in downstream and upstream migrant animals permits tentative conclusions to be drawn about the isoforms used in four of the five spectral classes of photoreceptor. Overall, our results suggest that agnathan rod-like photoreceptors utilize the same GNAT1 as gnathostomes, together with a homodimeric PDE6 that may be agnathan-specific, whereas agnathan cone-like photoreceptors utilize a GNAT that may be agnathan-specific, together with the same PDE6C as gnathostomes. These findings help elucidate the evolution of the vertebrate phototransduction cascade from an ancestral chordate phototransduction cascade that existed prior to the vertebrate radiation. PMID:27189541

  6. Evolution of Vertebrate Phototransduction: Cascade Activation.

    PubMed

    Lamb, Trevor D; Patel, Hardip; Chuah, Aaron; Natoli, Riccardo C; Davies, Wayne I L; Hart, Nathan S; Collin, Shaun P; Hunt, David M

    2016-08-01

    We applied high-throughput sequencing to eye tissue from several species of basal vertebrates (a hagfish, two species of lamprey, and five species of gnathostome fish), and we analyzed the mRNA sequences for the proteins underlying activation of the phototransduction cascade. The molecular phylogenies that we constructed from these sequences are consistent with the 2R WGD model of two rounds of whole genome duplication. Our analysis suggests that agnathans retain an additional representative (that has been lost in gnathostomes) in each of the gene families we studied; the evidence is strong for the G-protein α subunit (GNAT) and the cGMP phosphodiesterase (PDE6), and indicative for the cyclic nucleotide-gated channels (CNGA and CNGB). Two of the species (the hagfish Eptatretus cirrhatus and the lamprey Mordacia mordax) possess only a single class of photoreceptor, simplifying deductions about the composition of cascade protein isoforms utilized in their photoreceptors. For the other lamprey, Geotria australis, analysis of the ratios of transcript levels in downstream and upstream migrant animals permits tentative conclusions to be drawn about the isoforms used in four of the five spectral classes of photoreceptor. Overall, our results suggest that agnathan rod-like photoreceptors utilize the same GNAT1 as gnathostomes, together with a homodimeric PDE6 that may be agnathan-specific, whereas agnathan cone-like photoreceptors utilize a GNAT that may be agnathan-specific, together with the same PDE6C as gnathostomes. These findings help elucidate the evolution of the vertebrate phototransduction cascade from an ancestral chordate phototransduction cascade that existed prior to the vertebrate radiation. PMID:27189541

  7. DEVELOPMENTAL PALEOBIOLOGY OF THE VERTEBRATE SKELETON

    PubMed Central

    RÜCKLIN, MARTIN; DONOGHUE, PHILIP C. J.; CUNNINGHAM, JOHN A.; MARONE, FEDERICA; STAMPANONI, MARCO

    2015-01-01

    Studies of the development of organisms can reveal crucial information on homology of structures. Developmental data are not peculiar to living organisms, and they are routinely preserved in the mineralized tissues that comprise the vertebrate skeleton, allowing us to obtain direct insight into the developmental evolution of this most formative of vertebrate innovations. The pattern of developmental processes is recorded in fossils as successive stages inferred from the gross morphology of multiple specimens and, more reliably and routinely, through the ontogenetic stages of development seen in the skeletal histology of individuals. Traditional techniques are destructive and restricted to a 2-D plane with the third dimension inferred. Effective non-invasive methods of visualizing paleohistology to reconstruct developmental stages of the skeleton are necessary. In a brief survey of paleohistological techniques we discuss the pros and cons of these methods. The use of tomographic methods to reconstruct development of organs is exemplified by the study of the placoderm dentition. Testing evidence for the presence of teeth in placoderms, the first jawed vertebrates, we compare the methods that have been used. These include inferring the development from morphology, and using serial sectioning, microCT or synchrotron X-ray tomographic microscopy (SRXTM) to reconstruct growth stages and directions of growth. The ensuing developmental interpretations are biased by the methods and degree of inference. The most direct and reliable method is using SRXTM data to trace sclerochronology. The resulting developmental data can be used to resolve homology and test hypotheses on the origin of evolutionary novelties. PMID:26306050

  8. Vertebral Body Growth After Craniospinal Irradiation

    SciTech Connect

    Hartley, Katherine A.; Li Chenghong; Laningham, Fred H.; Krasin, Matthew J.; Xiong Xiaoping; Merchant, Thomas E.

    2008-04-01

    Purpose: To estimate the effects of radiotherapy and clinical factors on vertebral growth in patients with medulloblastoma and supratentorial primitive neuroectodermal tumors treated with craniospinal irradiation (CSI) and chemotherapy. Methods and Materials: The height of eight individual or grouped vertebral bodies (C3, C3-C4, T4, T4-T5, C6-T3, T4-T7, L3, L1-L5) was measured before and after CSI (23.4 or 36-39.6 Gy) in 61 patients. Of the 61 patients, 40 were boys and 21 were girls (median age, 7 years; range, 3-13 years), treated between October 1996 and October 2003. Sagittal T{sub 1}-weighted magnetic resonance images were used for the craniocaudal measurements. The measurements numbered 275 (median, 5/patient; range, 3-7). The median follow-up after CSI was 44.1 months (range, 13.8-74.9 months). Results: Significant growth was observed in all measured vertebrae. Excluding C3-C4, the growth rate of the grouped vertebrae was affected by age, gender, and CSI dose (risk classification). The risk classification alone affected the growth rates of C3 (p = 0.002) and L3 (p = 0.02). Before CSI, the length of all vertebral bodies was an increasing function of age (p <0.0001). The C3 length before CSI was affected by gender and risk classification: C3 was longer for female (p = 0.07) and high-risk (p = 0.07) patients. Conclusion: All vertebrae grew significantly after CSI, with the vertebrae of the boys and younger patients growing at a rate greater than that of their counterparts. The effect of age was similar across all vertebrae, and gender had the greatest effect on the growth of the lower cervical and upper thoracic vertebrae. The effect of the risk classification was greatest in the lumbar spine by a factor of {<=}10.

  9. Evaluation and Management of Vertebral Compression Fractures

    PubMed Central

    Alexandru, Daniela; So, William

    2012-01-01

    Compression fractures affect many individuals worldwide. An estimated 1.5 million vertebral compression fractures occur every year in the US. They are common in elderly populations, and 25% of postmenopausal women are affected by a compression fracture during their lifetime. Although these fractures rarely require hospital admission, they have the potential to cause significant disability and morbidity, often causing incapacitating back pain for many months. This review provides information on the pathogenesis and pathophysiology of compression fractures, as well as clinical manifestations and treatment options. Among the available treatment options, kyphoplasty and percutaneous vertebroplasty are two minimally invasive techniques to alleviate pain and correct the sagittal imbalance of the spine. PMID:23251117

  10. Quaternary vertebrates from Greenland: A review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bennike, Ole

    Remains of fishes, birds and mammals are rarely reported from Quaternary deposits in Greenland. The oldest remains come from Late Pliocene and Early Pleistocene deposits and comprise Atlantic cod, hare, rabbit and ringed seal. Interglacial and interstadial deposits have yielded remains of cod, little auk, collared lemming, ringed seal, reindeer and bowhead whale. Early and Mid-Holocene finds include capelin, polar cod, red fish, sculpin, three-spined stickleback, Lapland longspur, Arctic hare, collared lemming, wolf, walrus, ringed seal, reindeer and bowhead whale. It is considered unlikely that vertebrates could survive in Greenland during the peak of the last glaciation, but many species had probably already immigrated in the Early Holocene.

  11. Intracranial Vertebral Artery Dissections: Evolving Perspectives

    PubMed Central

    Ali, M.S.; Amenta, P.S.; Starke, R.M.; Jabbour, P.M.; Gonzalez, L.F.; Tjoumakaris, S.I.; Flanders, A.E.; Rosenwasser, R.H.; Dumont, A.S.

    2012-01-01

    Summary Intracranial vertebral artery dissection (VAD) represents the underlying etiology in a significant percentage of posterior circulation ischemic strokes and subarachnoid hemorrhages. These lesions are particularly challenging in their diagnosis, management, and in the prediction of long-term outcome. Advances in the understanding of underlying processes leading to dissection, as well as the evolution of modern imaging techniques are discussed. The data pertaining to medical management of intracranial VADs, with emphasis on anticoagulants and antiplatelet agents, is reviewed. Surgical intervention is discussed, including, the selection of operative candidates, open and endovascular procedures, and potential complications. The evolution of endovascular technology and techniques is highlighted. PMID:23217643

  12. Molecular evolution of color vision in vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Yokoyama, Shozo

    2002-10-30

    Visual systems of vertebrates exhibit a striking level of diversity, reflecting their adaptive responses to various color environments. The photosensitive molecules, visual pigments, can be synthesized in vitro and their absorption spectra can be determined. Comparing the amino acid sequences and absorption spectra of various visual pigments, we can identify amino acid changes that have modified the absorption spectra of visual pigments. These hypotheses can then be tested using the in vitro assay. This approach has been a powerful tool in elucidating not only the molecular bases of color vision, but the processes of adaptive evolution at the molecular level.

  13. Vertebral pathology in the afar australopithecines.

    PubMed

    Cook, D C; Buikstra, J E; DeRousseau, C J; Johanson, D C

    1983-01-01

    Ten vertebral elements from the AL-288 partial hominid skeleton and 11 elements from the AL-333 collection are described. The AL-288 column presents a marked kyphosis at the level of thoracic vertebrae 6 through 10, with pronounced new bone formation on the ventral surfaces of these vertebrae. These features, associated with narrowed disc space and minor osteophytosis, resemble Scheuermann disease in the human. Even though this diagnosis is consistent with a basically human, bipedal locomotor repertoire, the presence of Scheuermann disease suggests that lifting, climbing, or acrobatic activities may have been important in early hominids.

  14. Identifying Synonymous Regulatory Elements in Vertebrate Genomes

    SciTech Connect

    Ovcharenko, I; Nobrega, M A

    2005-02-07

    Synonymous gene regulation, defined as driving shared temporal and/or spatial expression of groups of genes, is likely predicated on genomic elements that contain similar modules of certain transcription factor binding sites (TFBS). We have developed a method to scan vertebrate genomes for evolutionary conserved modules of TFBS in a predefined configuration, and created a tool, named SynoR that identify synonymous regulatory elements (SREs) in vertebrate genomes. SynoR performs de novo identification of SREs utilizing known patterns of TFBS in active regulatory elements (REs) as seeds for genome scans. Layers of multiple-species conservation allow the use of differential phylogenetic sequence conservation filters in the search of SREs and the results are displayed as to provide an extensive annotation of genes containing detected REs. Gene Ontology categories are utilized to further functionally classify the identified genes, and integrated GNF Expression Atlas 2 data allow the cataloging of tissue-specificities of the predicted SREs. We illustrate how this new tool can be used to establish a linkage between human diseases and noncoding genomic content. SynoR is publicly available at http://synor.dcode.org.

  15. HOVERGEN: a database of homologous vertebrate genes.

    PubMed Central

    Duret, L; Mouchiroud, D; Gouy, M

    1994-01-01

    Comparison of homologous genes is a major step for many studies related to genome structure, function or evolution. Similarity search programs easily find genes homologous to a given sequence. However, only very tedious manual procedures allow the retrieval of all sets of homologous genes sequenced for a given set of species. Moreover, this search often generates errors due to the complexity of data to be managed simultaneously: phylogenetic trees, alignments, taxonomy, sequences and related information. HOVERGEN helps to solve these problems by integrating all this information. HOVERGEN corresponds to GenBank sequences from all vertebrate species, with some data corrected, clarified, or completed, notably to address the problem of redundancy. Coding sequences have been classified in gene families. Protein multiple alignments and phylogenetic trees have been calculated for each family. Sequences and related information have been structured in an ACNUC database which permits complex selections. A graphical interface has been developed to visualize and edit trees. Genes are displayed in color, according to their taxonomy. Users have directly access to all information attached to sequences and to multiple alignments simply by clicking on genes. This graphical tool gives thus a rapid and simple access to all data necessary to interpret homology relationships between genes. HOVERGEN allows the user to easily select sets of homologous vertebrate genes, and thus is particularly useful for comparative sequence analysis, or molecular evolution studies. Images PMID:8036164

  16. What can vertebrates tell us about segmentation?

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Segmentation is a feature of the body plans of a number of diverse animal groupings, including the annelids, arthropods and chordates. However, it has been unclear whether or not these different manifestations of segmentation are independently derived or have a common origin. Central to this issue is whether or not there are common developmental mechanisms that establish segmentation and the evolutionary origins of these processes. A fruitful way to address this issue is to consider how segmentation in vertebrates is directed. During vertebrate development three different segmental systems are established: the somites, the rhombomeres and the pharyngeal arches. In each an iteration of parts along the long axis is established. However, it is clear that the formation of the somites, rhombomeres or pharyngeal arches have little in common, and as such there is no single segmentation process. These different segmental systems also have distinct evolutionary histories, thus highlighting the fact that segmentation can and does evolve independently at multiple points. We conclude that the term segmentation indicates nothing more than a morphological description and that it implies no mechanistic similarity. Thus it is probable that segmentation has arisen repeatedly during animal evolution. PMID:25009737

  17. Generation of Viable Plant-Vertebrate Chimeras.

    PubMed

    Alvarez, Marjorie; Reynaert, Nicole; Chávez, Myra N; Aedo, Geraldine; Araya, Francisco; Hopfner, Ursula; Fernández, Juan; Allende, Miguel L; Egaña, José T

    2015-01-01

    The extreme dependence on external oxygen supply observed in animals causes major clinical problems and several diseases are related to low oxygen tension in tissues. The vast majority of the animals do not produce oxygen but a few exceptions have shown that photosynthetic capacity is physiologically compatible with animal life. Such symbiotic photosynthetic relationships are restricted to a few aquatic invertebrates. In this work we aimed to explore if we could create a chimerical organism by incorporating photosynthetic eukaryotic cells into a vertebrate animal model. Here, the microalgae Chlamydomonas reinhardtii was injected into zebrafish eggs and the interaction and viability of both organisms were studied. Results show that microalgae were distributed into different tissues, forming a fish-alga chimera organism for a prolonged period of time. In addition, microscopic observation of injected algae, in vivo expression of their mRNA and re-growth of the algae ex vivo suggests that they survived to the developmental process, living for several days after injection. Moreover microalgae did not trigger a significant inflammatory response in the fish. This work provides additional evidence to support the possibility that photosynthetic vertebrates can be engineered. PMID:26126202

  18. Flexible device for vertebral body replacement.

    PubMed

    Main, J A; Wells, M E; Spengler, D M; Strauss, A M; Keller, T S

    1989-03-01

    A novel vertebral prosthesis is presented. The prosthesis was developed for surgical procedures requiring the resection of a complete vertebral body and the adjacent intervertebral discs, the design objective being to develop a flexible implant that would be robust enough to withstand the in vivo stress environment of the human spine. In theory, a flexible implant should preserve a more normal range of motion and apply less stress to surrounding tissue than a rigid implant. A prototype implant was constructed so as to combine a rigid stainless steel structure with flexible silicon rubber elements in order to form an implant with static and dynamic mechanical characteristics similar to those of the anterior spinal column. Implant flexibility characteristics were determined from ex vivo stress-strain behaviour during bending and compressive creep testing. Results from the bending tests indicated good agreement for the lateral and sagittal bending characteristics in comparison with in vitro bending tests of human lumbar motion segments. Comparison of the implant compressive creep response with similar in vitro tests on human lumbar intervertebral discs also demonstrated similarities in the time-dependent mechanical parameters. PMID:2704210

  19. Sensing and surviving hypoxia in vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Jonz, Michael G; Buck, Leslie T; Perry, Steve F; Schwerte, Thorsten; Zaccone, Giacomo

    2016-02-01

    Surviving hypoxia is one of the most critical challenges faced by vertebrates. Most species have adapted to changing levels of oxygen in their environment with specialized organs that sense hypoxia, while only few have been uniquely adapted to survive prolonged periods of anoxia. The goal of this review is to present the most recent research on oxygen sensing, adaptation to hypoxia, and mechanisms of anoxia tolerance in nonmammalian vertebrates. We discuss the respiratory structures in fish, including the skin, gills, and air-breathing organs, and recent evidence for chemosensory neuroepithelial cells (NECs) in these tissues that initiate reflex responses to hypoxia. The use of the zebrafish as a genetic and developmental model has allowed observation of the ontogenesis of respiratory and chemosensory systems, demonstration of a putative intracellular O2 sensor in chemoreceptors that may initiate transduction of the hypoxia signal, and investigation into the effects of extreme hypoxia on cardiorespiratory development. Other organisms, such as goldfish and freshwater turtles, display a high degree of anoxia tolerance, and these models are revealing important adaptations at the cellular level, such as the regulation of glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission in defense of homeostasis in central neurons.

  20. "Ostrich sign" indicates bilateral vertebral artery dissection.

    PubMed

    Rose, David Z; Husain, M Rizwan

    2012-11-01

    Vertebral artery dissections (VADs) comprise about 2% of ischemic strokes and can be associated with trauma, chiropractic manipulation, motor vehicle collisions, whiplash, amusement park rides, golfing, and other motion-induced injuries to the neck. We present a case of bilateral extracranial VAD as a complication of conducting an orchestra. To our knowledge, this has not been documented in the literature. Conceivably, vigorous neck twisting in an inexperienced, amateur conductor may place excessive rotational forces upon mobile portions of the verterbral arteries, tear the intima, deposit subintimal blood that extends longitudinally, and cause neck pain and/or posterior fossa ischemic symptoms. Magnetic resonance angiography examinations of axially oriented slices of bilateral VADs resemble the face of an ostrich. This observation is similar to the "puppy sign," in which bilateral internal carotid artery dissections resemble the face of a dog. Craniocervical dissections of either the carotid or vertebral arteries have the potential to form an aneurysm, cause artery-to-artery embolism, or completely occlude the parent artery, resulting in an ischemic stroke. Because bilateral VADs in axial magnetic resonance angiographic sections stand out like the eyes of an ostrich, and because the fast identification of VADs is so critical, we eponymize this image the "ostrich sign."

  1. Generation of Viable Plant-Vertebrate Chimeras

    PubMed Central

    Aedo, Geraldine; Araya, Francisco; Hopfner, Ursula; Fernández, Juan; Allende, Miguel L.; Egaña, José T.

    2015-01-01

    The extreme dependence on external oxygen supply observed in animals causes major clinical problems and several diseases are related to low oxygen tension in tissues. The vast majority of the animals do not produce oxygen but a few exceptions have shown that photosynthetic capacity is physiologically compatible with animal life. Such symbiotic photosynthetic relationships are restricted to a few aquatic invertebrates. In this work we aimed to explore if we could create a chimerical organism by incorporating photosynthetic eukaryotic cells into a vertebrate animal model. Here, the microalgae Chlamydomonas reinhardtii was injected into zebrafish eggs and the interaction and viability of both organisms were studied. Results show that microalgae were distributed into different tissues, forming a fish-alga chimera organism for a prolonged period of time. In addition, microscopic observation of injected algae, in vivo expression of their mRNA and re-growth of the algae ex vivo suggests that they survived to the developmental process, living for several days after injection. Moreover microalgae did not trigger a significant inflammatory response in the fish. This work provides additional evidence to support the possibility that photosynthetic vertebrates can be engineered. PMID:26126202

  2. The characters of Palaeozoic jawed vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Brazeau, Martin D; Friedman, Matt

    2014-01-01

    Newly discovered fossils from the Silurian and Devonian periods are beginning to challenge embedded perceptions about the origin and early diversification of jawed vertebrates (gnathostomes). Nevertheless, an explicit cladistic framework for the relationships of these fossils relative to the principal crown lineages of the jawed vertebrates (osteichthyans: bony fishes and tetrapods; chondrichthyans: sharks, batoids, and chimaeras) remains elusive. We critically review the systematics and character distributions of early gnathostomes and provide a clearly stated hierarchy of synapomorphies covering the jaw-bearing stem gnathostomes and osteichthyan and chondrichthyan stem groups. We show that character lists, designed to support the monophyly of putative groups, tend to overstate their strength and lack cladistic corroboration. By contrast, synapomorphic hierarchies are more open to refutation and must explicitly confront conflicting evidence. Our proposed synapomorphy scheme is used to evaluate the status of the problematic fossil groups Acanthodii and Placodermi, and suggest profitable avenues for future research. We interpret placoderms as a paraphyletic array of stem-group gnathostomes, and suggest what we regard as two equally plausible placements of acanthodians: exclusively on the chondrichthyan stem, or distributed on both the chondrichthyan and osteichthyan stems. PMID:25750460

  3. Permo-Triassic vertebrate extinctions: A program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Olson, E. C.

    1988-01-01

    Since the time of the Authors' study on this subject, a great deal of new information has become available. Concepts of the nature of extinctions have changed materially. The Authors' conclusion that a catastrophic event was not responsible for the extinction of vertebrates has modified to the extent that hypotheses involving either the impact of a massive extra-terrestrial body or volcanism provide plausible but not currently fully testable hypotheses. Stated changes resulted in a rapid decrease in organic diversity, as the ratio of origins of taxa to extinctions shifted from strongly positive to negative, with momentary equilibrium being reached at about the Permo-Triassic boundary. The proximate causes of the changes in the terrestrial biota appear to lie in two primary factors: (1) strong climatic changes (global mean temperatures, temperature ranges, humidity) and (2) susceptibility of the dominant vertebrates (large dicynodonts) and the glossopteris flora to disruption of the equlibrium of the world ecosystem. The following proximate causes have been proposed: (1) rhythmic fluctuations in solar radiation, (2) tectonic events as Pangea assembled, altering land-ocean relationships, patterns of wind and water circulation and continental physiography, (3) volcanism, and (4) changes subsequent to impacts of one or more massive extra terrestrial objects, bodies or comets. These hypotheses are discussed.

  4. The evolution of vertebrate opioid receptors

    PubMed Central

    Stevens, Craig W.

    2011-01-01

    The proteins that mediate the analgesic and other effects of opioid drugs and endogenous opioid peptides are known as opioid receptors. Opioid receptors consist of a family of four closely-related proteins belonging to the large superfamily of G-protein coupled receptors. The three types of opioid receptors shown unequivocally to mediate analgesia in animal models are the mu (MOR), delta (DOR), and kappa (KOR) opioid receptor proteins. The role of the fourth member of the opioid receptor family, the nociceptin or orphanin FQ receptor (ORL), is not as clear as hyperalgesia, analgesia, and no effect was reported after administration of ORL agonists. There are now cDNA sequences for all four types of opioid receptors that are expressed in the brain of six species from three different classes of vertebrates. This review presents a comparative analysis of vertebrate opioid receptors using bioinformatics and data from recent human genome studies. Results indicate that opioid receptors arose by gene duplication, that there is a vector of opioid receptor divergence, and that MOR shows evidence of rapid evolution. PMID:19273128

  5. Aberrant Origin of Vertebral Artery and its Clinical Implications

    PubMed Central

    Yuan, Shi-Min

    2016-01-01

    Aberrant origin of vertebral artery is rare. The anatomical features and clinical significance of this lesion remain to be clarified. A comprehensive collection of the pertinent literature resulted in a cohort of 1286 cases involving 955 patients and 331 cadavers. There were more left than right and more unilateral than bilateral aberrant vertebral arteries. Patients with aberrant origin of vertebral artery were often asymptomatic and in only 5.5% of the patients their symptoms were probably related to the aberrant origin of vertebral artery. The acquired cardiovascular lesions were present in 9.5% of the patients, 20.9% of which were vertebral artery-associated lesions. Eight (0.8%) patients had a vertebral artery dissection. Logistic regression analysis showed significant regressions between bovine trunk and left vertebral artery (P=0.000), between the dual origins of vertebral artery and cerebral infarct/thrombus (P=0.041), between associated alternative congenital vascular variants and cervical/aortic dissection/atherosclerosis (P=0.008). Multiple logistic regression demonstrated that side of the aberrant origin of vertebral artery (left vertebral artery) (P=0.014), arch branch pattern (direct arch origin) (P=0.019), presence of the common trunk (P=0.019), associated acquired vascular disorder (P=0.034) and the patients who warranted management (P=0.000) were significant risk predictors for neurological sequelea. The patients with neurological symptoms and those for neck and chest operations/ interventions should be carefully screened for the possibility of an aberrant origin of vertebral artery. The results from the cadaver metrology study are very helpful in the design of the aortic stent. The arch branch pattern has to be taken into consideration before any maneuver in the local region so as to avoid unexpected events in relation to aberrant vertebral artery. PMID:27074275

  6. Vertebral artery stenting by using coronary intervention techniques and devices.

    PubMed

    Kilic, Harun; Balci, Mustafa; Akdemir, Ramazan

    2009-04-01

    Atherosclerotic disease of the vertebro/basilar vessels is an important cause of posterior circulation infarction. Commonly, the primary atheroma forms at the origin of the vertebral arteries. Although initial treatment is medical, arch and four-vessel studies (CTA, MRA, or DSA) are warranted if symptoms continue. Endovascular management of vertebral artery stenosis might be highlighted as a good option in selected patients. This is a case of endoluminal stenting of vertebral artery with a durable result. PMID:19476126

  7. Independent regulation of vertebral number and vertebral identity by microRNA-196 paralogs

    PubMed Central

    Wong, Siew Fen Lisa; Agarwal, Vikram; Mansfield, Jennifer H.; Denans, Nicolas; Schwartz, Matthew G.; Prosser, Haydn M.; Pourquié, Olivier; Bartel, David P.; Tabin, Clifford J.; McGlinn, Edwina

    2015-01-01

    The Hox genes play a central role in patterning the embryonic anterior-to-posterior axis. An important function of Hox activity in vertebrates is the specification of different vertebral morphologies, with an additional role in axis elongation emerging. The miR-196 family of microRNAs (miRNAs) are predicted to extensively target Hox 3′ UTRs, although the full extent to which miR-196 regulates Hox expression dynamics and influences mammalian development remains to be elucidated. Here we used an extensive allelic series of mouse knockouts to show that the miR-196 family of miRNAs is essential both for properly patterning vertebral identity at different axial levels and for modulating the total number of vertebrae. All three miR-196 paralogs, 196a1, 196a2, and 196b, act redundantly to pattern the midthoracic region, whereas 196a2 and 196b have an additive role in controlling the number of rib-bearing vertebra and positioning of the sacrum. Independent of this, 196a1, 196a2, and 196b act redundantly to constrain total vertebral number. Loss of miR-196 leads to a collective up-regulation of numerous trunk Hox target genes with a concomitant delay in activation of caudal Hox genes, which are proposed to signal the end of axis extension. Additionally, we identified altered molecular signatures associated with the Wnt, Fgf, and Notch/segmentation pathways and demonstrate that miR-196 has the potential to regulate Wnt activity by multiple mechanisms. By feeding into, and thereby integrating, multiple genetic networks controlling vertebral number and identity, miR-196 is a critical player defining axial formulae. PMID:26283362

  8. Independent regulation of vertebral number and vertebral identity by microRNA-196 paralogs.

    PubMed

    Wong, Siew Fen Lisa; Agarwal, Vikram; Mansfield, Jennifer H; Denans, Nicolas; Schwartz, Matthew G; Prosser, Haydn M; Pourquié, Olivier; Bartel, David P; Tabin, Clifford J; McGlinn, Edwina

    2015-09-01

    The Hox genes play a central role in patterning the embryonic anterior-to-posterior axis. An important function of Hox activity in vertebrates is the specification of different vertebral morphologies, with an additional role in axis elongation emerging. The miR-196 family of microRNAs (miRNAs) are predicted to extensively target Hox 3' UTRs, although the full extent to which miR-196 regulates Hox expression dynamics and influences mammalian development remains to be elucidated. Here we used an extensive allelic series of mouse knockouts to show that the miR-196 family of miRNAs is essential both for properly patterning vertebral identity at different axial levels and for modulating the total number of vertebrae. All three miR-196 paralogs, 196a1, 196a2, and 196b, act redundantly to pattern the midthoracic region, whereas 196a2 and 196b have an additive role in controlling the number of rib-bearing vertebra and positioning of the sacrum. Independent of this, 196a1, 196a2, and 196b act redundantly to constrain total vertebral number. Loss of miR-196 leads to a collective up-regulation of numerous trunk Hox target genes with a concomitant delay in activation of caudal Hox genes, which are proposed to signal the end of axis extension. Additionally, we identified altered molecular signatures associated with the Wnt, Fgf, and Notch/segmentation pathways and demonstrate that miR-196 has the potential to regulate Wnt activity by multiple mechanisms. By feeding into, and thereby integrating, multiple genetic networks controlling vertebral number and identity, miR-196 is a critical player defining axial formulae.

  9. Response of thoracolumbar vertebral bodies to high rate compressive loading - biomed 2013.

    PubMed

    Dooley, C J; Wester, B A; Wing, I D; Voo, L M; Armiger, R S; Merkle, A C

    2013-01-01

    Underbody blast (UBB) events created by improvised explosive devices are threats to warfighter survivability. High intensity blast waves emitted from these devices transfer large forces through vehicle structures to occupants, often resulting in injuries including debilitating spinal fractures. The vertical loading vector through the spine generates significant compressive forces at high strain rates. To better understand injury mechanisms and ultimately better protect vehicle occupants against UBB attacks, high-fidelity computational models are being developed to predict the human response to dynamic loading characteristic of these events. This effort details the results from a series of 23 high-rate compression tests on vertebral body specimen. A high-rate servo-hydraulic test system applied a range of compressive loading rates (.01 mm/s to 1238 mm/s) to vertebral bodies in the thoracolumbar region (T7-L5). The force-deflection curves generated indicate rate dependent sensitivity of vertebral stiffness, ultimate load and ultimate deflection. Specimen subjected to high-rate dynamic loading to failure experienced critical structural damage at 5.5% ± 2.1% deflection. Compared to quasi-static loading, vertebral bodies had greater stiffness, greater force to failure, and lower ultimate failure deflection at high rates. Post-failure, an average loss in height of 15% was observed, along with a mean reduction in strength of 48%. The resulting data from these tests will allow for enhanced biofidelity of computational models by characterizing the vertebral stiffness response and ultimate deflection at rates representative of UBB events. PMID:23686197

  10. Facts and fancies about early fossil chordates and vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Janvier, Philippe

    2015-04-23

    The interrelationships between major living vertebrate, and even chordate, groups are now reasonably well resolved thanks to a large amount of generally congruent data derived from molecular sequences, anatomy and physiology. But fossils provide unexpected combinations of characters that help us to understand how the anatomy of modern groups was progressively shaped over millions of years. The dawn of vertebrates is documented by fossils that are preserved as either soft-tissue imprints, or minute skeletal fragments, and it is sometimes difficult for palaeontologists to tell which of them are reliable vertebrate remains and which merely reflect our idea of an ancestral vertebrate.

  11. Correlation between Hox code and vertebral morphology in archosaurs.

    PubMed

    Böhmer, Christine; Rauhut, Oliver W M; Wörheide, Gert

    2015-07-01

    The relationship between developmental genes and phenotypic variation is of central interest in evolutionary biology. An excellent example is the role of Hox genes in the anteroposterior regionalization of the vertebral column in vertebrates. Archosaurs (crocodiles, dinosaurs including birds) are highly variable both in vertebral morphology and number. Nevertheless, functionally equivalent Hox genes are active in the axial skeleton during embryonic development, indicating that the morphological variation across taxa is likely owing to modifications in the pattern of Hox gene expression. By using geometric morphometrics, we demonstrate a correlation between vertebral Hox code and quantifiable vertebral morphology in modern archosaurs, in which the boundaries between morphological subgroups of vertebrae can be linked to anterior Hox gene expression boundaries. Our findings reveal homologous units of cervical vertebrae in modern archosaurs, each with their specific Hox gene pattern, enabling us to trace these homologies in the extinct sauropodomorph dinosaurs, a group with highly variable vertebral counts. Based on the quantifiable vertebral morphology, this allows us to infer the underlying genetic mechanisms in vertebral evolution in fossils, which represents not only an important case study, but will lead to a better understanding of the origin of morphological disparity in recent archosaur vertebral columns.

  12. Correlation between Hox code and vertebral morphology in archosaurs

    PubMed Central

    Böhmer, Christine; Rauhut, Oliver W. M.; Wörheide, Gert

    2015-01-01

    The relationship between developmental genes and phenotypic variation is of central interest in evolutionary biology. An excellent example is the role of Hox genes in the anteroposterior regionalization of the vertebral column in vertebrates. Archosaurs (crocodiles, dinosaurs including birds) are highly variable both in vertebral morphology and number. Nevertheless, functionally equivalent Hox genes are active in the axial skeleton during embryonic development, indicating that the morphological variation across taxa is likely owing to modifications in the pattern of Hox gene expression. By using geometric morphometrics, we demonstrate a correlation between vertebral Hox code and quantifiable vertebral morphology in modern archosaurs, in which the boundaries between morphological subgroups of vertebrae can be linked to anterior Hox gene expression boundaries. Our findings reveal homologous units of cervical vertebrae in modern archosaurs, each with their specific Hox gene pattern, enabling us to trace these homologies in the extinct sauropodomorph dinosaurs, a group with highly variable vertebral counts. Based on the quantifiable vertebral morphology, this allows us to infer the underlying genetic mechanisms in vertebral evolution in fossils, which represents not only an important case study, but will lead to a better understanding of the origin of morphological disparity in recent archosaur vertebral columns. PMID:26085583

  13. Reintroduction of locally extinct vertebrates impacts arid soil fungal communities.

    PubMed

    Clarke, Laurence J; Weyrich, Laura S; Cooper, Alan

    2015-06-01

    Introduced species have contributed to extinction of native vertebrates in many parts of the world. Changes to vertebrate assemblages are also likely to alter microbial communities through coextinction of some taxa and the introduction of others. Many attempts to restore degraded habitats involve removal of exotic vertebrates (livestock and feral animals) and reintroduction of locally extinct species, but the impact of such reintroductions on microbial communities is largely unknown. We used high-throughput DNA sequencing of the fungal internal transcribed spacer I (ITS1) region to examine whether replacing exotic vertebrates with reintroduced native vertebrates led to changes in soil fungal communities at a reserve in arid central Australia. Soil fungal diversity was significantly different between dune and swale (interdune) habitats. Fungal communities also differed significantly between sites with exotic or reintroduced native vertebrates after controlling for the effect of habitat. Several fungal operational taxonomic units (OTUs) found exclusively inside the reserve were present in scats from reintroduced native vertebrates, providing a direct link between the vertebrate assemblage and soil microbial communities. Our results show that changes to vertebrate assemblages through local extinctions and the invasion of exotic species can alter soil fungal communities. If local extinction of one or several species results in the coextinction of microbial taxa, the full complement of ecological interactions may never be restored. PMID:25943906

  14. Candidal Vertebral Osteomyelitis in the Midst of Renal Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Kumar, Anil; Rao, Srivatsa Nagaraja; Kumar, Krishna; Karim, Shamsul

    2016-01-01

    Vertebral osteomyelitis also known as discitis/pyogenic spondylitis refers to inflammation of the vertebral disc space. It is commonly seen in men and adults more than 50 years of age. Fungal osteomyelitis is a rare scenario compared to its bacterial counterpart. Spinal epidural abscess is a dangerous complication associated with vertebral osteomyelitis. Here, we report two cases of vertebral osteomyelitis caused by Candida tropicalis in patients with renal disorders (stage 5 chronic kidney disease and nephropathy). One of the case discussed here presented with spinal epidural abscess. Both the patients were started on antifungal therapy. One patient responded to treatment while the other was lost to follow up. PMID:27190806

  15. Correlation between Hox code and vertebral morphology in archosaurs.

    PubMed

    Böhmer, Christine; Rauhut, Oliver W M; Wörheide, Gert

    2015-07-01

    The relationship between developmental genes and phenotypic variation is of central interest in evolutionary biology. An excellent example is the role of Hox genes in the anteroposterior regionalization of the vertebral column in vertebrates. Archosaurs (crocodiles, dinosaurs including birds) are highly variable both in vertebral morphology and number. Nevertheless, functionally equivalent Hox genes are active in the axial skeleton during embryonic development, indicating that the morphological variation across taxa is likely owing to modifications in the pattern of Hox gene expression. By using geometric morphometrics, we demonstrate a correlation between vertebral Hox code and quantifiable vertebral morphology in modern archosaurs, in which the boundaries between morphological subgroups of vertebrae can be linked to anterior Hox gene expression boundaries. Our findings reveal homologous units of cervical vertebrae in modern archosaurs, each with their specific Hox gene pattern, enabling us to trace these homologies in the extinct sauropodomorph dinosaurs, a group with highly variable vertebral counts. Based on the quantifiable vertebral morphology, this allows us to infer the underlying genetic mechanisms in vertebral evolution in fossils, which represents not only an important case study, but will lead to a better understanding of the origin of morphological disparity in recent archosaur vertebral columns. PMID:26085583

  16. Hyperfractionation decreases the deleterious effects of conventional radiation fractionation on vertebral growth in animals

    SciTech Connect

    Hartsell, W.F.; Hanson, W.R.; Conterato, D.J.; Hendrickson, F.R.

    1989-06-15

    Craniospinal axis irradiation in the treatment of pediatric tumors is associated with serious long-term sequelae including decreased bone growth (short sitting stature). In this study, an animal model was used to determine the effects of smaller incremental doses of radiation on bone growth. Sprague-Dawley weanling rats were given 25 Gy to the spine in 8 to 9 days, with fraction sizes ranging from 1.0 to 1.8 Gy. The animals receiving smaller doses per fraction (1.0 or 1.25 Gy) showed significantly more growth of the vertebral bodies in the treated fields than animals given larger incremental doses (1.5 or 1.8 Gy). These findings indicate a protective effect on bone growth for hyperfractionated irradiation of vertebral bodies.

  17. Effects of desert wildfires on desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizii) and other small vertebrates

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Esque, T.C.; Schwalbe, C.R.; DeFalco, L.A.; Duncan, R.B.; Hughes, T.J.

    2003-01-01

    We report the results of standardized surveys to determine the effects of wildfires on desert tortoises (Gopherus agassizii) and their habitats in the northeastern Mojave Desert and northeastern Sonoran Desert. Portions of 6 burned areas (118 to 1,750 ha) were examined for signs of mortality of vertebrates. Direct effects of fire in desert habitats included animal mortality and loss of vegetation cover. A range of 0 to 7 tortoises was encountered during surveys, and live tortoises were found on all transects. In addition to desert tortoises, only small (<1 kg) mammals and reptiles (11 taxa) were found dead on the study areas. We hypothesize that indirect effects of fire on desert habitats might result in changes in the composition of diets and loss of vegetation cover, resulting in an increase in predation and loss of protection from temperature extremes. These changes in habitat also might cause changes in vertebrate communities in burned areas.

  18. Squash(ed): Craniofacial and vertebral injury from collision on squash court.

    PubMed

    Atik, Alp; Krilis, Matthew; Parker, Geoffrey

    2012-10-01

    Squash is a popular racquet sport not usually associated with severe head or spinal injury. The incidence of squash-related injury ranges from 35.5 to 80.9 per 100,000 players, with the most common sites being the lower-limbs and eyes. We present a case of extensive traumatic craniomaxillofacial and vertebral injury resulting from collision on a squash court, without use of protective gear. The patient sustained fractures of the frontal bone, orbits, maxillae, zygomas, the first and second cervical vertebrae and the spinous process of the seventh cervical vertrebra. This is the first case of squash-related injury with such extensive craniofacial and vertebral involvement. This unique case required multiple surgical procedures as well as an extensive admission to the intensive care unit and highlights the risk of significant craniomaxillofacial trauma in sports not usually associated with such injuries.

  19. Asymmetry in the epithalamus of vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    L. CONCHA, MIGUEL; W. WILSON, STEPHEN

    2001-01-01

    The epithalamus is a major subdivision of the diencephalon constituted by the habenular nuclei and pineal complex. Structural asymmetries in this region are widespread amongst vertebrates and involve differences in size, neuronal organisation, neurochemistry and connectivity. In species that possess a photoreceptive parapineal organ, this structure projects asymmetrically to the left habenula, and in teleosts it is also situated on the left side of the brain. Asymmetries in size between the left and right sides of the habenula are often associated with asymmetries in neuronal organisation, although these two types of asymmetry follow different evolutionary courses. While the former is more conspicuous in fishes (with the exception of teleosts), asymmetries in neuronal organisation are more robust in amphibia and reptiles. Connectivity of the parapineal organ with the left habenula is not always coupled with asymmetries in habenular size and/or neuronal organisation suggesting that, at least in some species, assignment of parapineal and habenular asymmetries may be independent events. The evolutionary origins of epithalamic structures are uncertain but asymmetry in this region is likely to have existed at the origin of the vertebrate, perhaps even the chordate, lineage. In at least some extant vertebrate species, epithalamic asymmetries are established early in development, suggesting a genetic regulation of asymmetry. In some cases, epigenetic factors such as hormones also influence the development of sexually dimorphic habenular asymmetries. Although the genetic and developmental mechanisms by which neuroanatomical asymmetries are established remain obscure, some clues regarding the mechanisms underlying laterality decisions have recently come from studies in zebrafish. The Nodal signalling pathway regulates laterality by biasing an otherwise stochastic laterality decision to the left side of the epithalamus. This genetic mechanism ensures a consistency of

  20. Control of Vertebrate Skeletal Mineralization by Polyphosphates

    PubMed Central

    Omelon, Sidney; Georgiou, John; Henneman, Zachary J.; Wise, Lisa M.; Sukhu, Balram; Hunt, Tanya; Wynnyckyj, Chrystia; Holmyard, Douglas; Bielecki, Ryszard; Grynpas, Marc D.

    2009-01-01

    Background Skeletons are formed in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and compositions of organic and mineral components. Many invertebrate skeletons are constructed from carbonate or silicate minerals, whereas vertebrate skeletons are instead composed of a calcium phosphate mineral known as apatite. No one yet knows why the dynamic vertebrate skeleton, which is continually rebuilt, repaired, and resorbed during growth and normal remodeling, is composed of apatite. Nor is the control of bone and calcifying cartilage mineralization well understood, though it is thought to be associated with phosphate-cleaving proteins. Researchers have assumed that skeletal mineralization is also associated with non-crystalline, calcium- and phosphate-containing electron-dense granules that have been detected in vertebrate skeletal tissue prepared under non-aqueous conditions. Again, however, the role of these granules remains poorly understood. Here, we review bone and growth plate mineralization before showing that polymers of phosphate ions (polyphosphates: (PO3−)n) are co-located with mineralizing cartilage and resorbing bone. We propose that the electron-dense granules contain polyphosphates, and explain how these polyphosphates may play an important role in apatite biomineralization. Principal Findings/Methodology The enzymatic formation (condensation) and destruction (hydrolytic degradation) of polyphosphates offers a simple mechanism for enzymatic control of phosphate accumulation and the relative saturation of apatite. Under circumstances in which apatite mineral formation is undesirable, such as within cartilage tissue or during bone resorption, the production of polyphosphates reduces the free orthophosphate (PO43−) concentration while permitting the accumulation of a high total PO43− concentration. Sequestering calcium into amorphous calcium polyphosphate complexes can reduce the concentration of free calcium. The resulting reduction of both free PO43− and free

  1. Carotid and vertebral artery dissection syndromes

    PubMed Central

    Thanvi, B; Munshi, S; Dawson, S; Robinson, T

    2005-01-01

    Cervicocerebral arterial dissections (CAD) are an important cause of strokes in younger patients accounting for nearly 20% of strokes in patients under the age of 45 years. Extracranial internal carotid artery dissections comprise 70%–80% and extracranial vertebral dissections account for about 15% of all CAD. Aetiopathogenesis of CAD is incompletely understood, though trauma, respiratory infections, and underlying arteriopathy are considered important. A typical picture of local pain, headache, and ipsilateral Horner's syndrome followed after several hours by cerebral or retinal ischaemia is rare. Doppler ultrasound, MRI/MRA, and CT angiography are useful non-invasive diagnostic tests. The treatment of extracranial CAD is mainly medical using anticoagulants or antiplatelet agents although controlled studies to show their effectiveness are lacking. The prognosis of extracranial CAD is generally much better than that of the intracranial CAD. Recurrences are rare in CAD. PMID:15937204

  2. Morphogenesis and evolution of vertebrate appendicular muscle

    PubMed Central

    HAINES, LYNN; CURRIE, PETER D.

    2001-01-01

    Two different modes are utilised by vertebrate species to generate the appendicular muscle present within fins and limbs. Primitive Chondricthyan or cartilaginous fishes use a primitive mode of muscle formation to generate the muscle of the fins. Direct epithelial myotomal extensions invade the fin and generate the fin muscles while remaining in contact with the myotome. Embryos of amniotes such as chick and mouse use a similar mechanism to that deployed in the bony teleost species, zebrafish. Migratory mesenchymal myoblasts delaminate from fin/limb level somites, migrate to the fin/limb field and differentiate entirely within the context of the fin/limb bud. Migratory fin and limb myoblasts express identical genes suggesting that they possess both morphogenetic and molecular identity. We conclude that the mechanisms controlling tetrapod limb muscle formation arose prior to the Sarcopterygian or tetrapod radiation. PMID:11523824

  3. Morphogenesis and evolution of vertebrate appendicular muscle.

    PubMed

    Haines, L; Currie, P D

    2001-01-01

    Two different modes are utilised by vertebrate species to generate the appendicular muscle present within fins and limbs. Primitive Chondricthyan or cartilaginous fishes use a primitive mode of muscle formation to generate the muscle of the fins. Direct epithelial myotomal extensions invade the fin and generate the fin muscles while remaining in contact with the myotome. Embryos of amniotes such as chick and mouse use a similar mechanism to that deployed in the bony teleost species, zebrafish. Migratory mesenchymal myoblasts delaminate from fin/limb level somites, migrate to the fin/limb field and differentiate entirely within the context of the fin/limb bud. Migratory fin and limb myoblasts express identical genes suggesting that they possess both morphogenetic and molecular identity. We conclude that the mechanisms controlling tetrapod limb muscle formation arose prior to the Sarcopterygian or tetrapod radiation. PMID:11523824

  4. Magnetic Susceptibility in the Vertebral Column

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schick, F.; Nagele, T.; Lutz, O.; Pfeffer, K.; Giehl, J.

    1994-01-01

    A magnetic resonance method is described which provides good-quality field-mapping images of the spine, although the in vivo signals from red bone marrow of the vertebral bodies exhibit similar fractions of lipid and water protons with their chemical-shift difference of 3.4 ppm. The susceptibilities of bone marrow and intervertebral disks were examined in 20 cadaveric human spines, 9 healthy volunteers, and 9 patients with degenerative disk alterations. The influence of geometrical properties was studied in cylindrical spine phantoms of different size and contents with different susceptibility. The measurements reveal interindividual differences of the susceptibility of the intervertebral disks in healthy subjects. Three out of nine degenerated disks with low signal in T2-weighted spin-echo images showed irregularities of the field distribution within the nucleus pulposus.

  5. Ewing's sarcoma of the vertebral column

    SciTech Connect

    Pilepich, M.V.; Vietti, T.J.; Nesbit, M.E.; Tefft, M.; Kissane, J.; Burgert, O.; Pritchard, D.; Gehan, E.A.

    1981-01-01

    Twenty-two patients with vertebral primaries were registered in the Intergroup Ewing's Sarcoma Study between 1973 and 1977. The radiation doses to the primary tumors ranged between 3800 and 6200 rad. All patients received intensive combination chemotherapy. After a followup ranging between 14 and 62 months, 14 patients remained disease-free. All patients with primary tumor of the cervical and dorsal spine remained disease-free. Of eight patients with lesions in the distal spine, (sacrococcygeal region) six developed recurrence, in three a local recurrence was observed despite doses of 6000 rad or higher. Doses of 5000 rad or less (in addition to combination chemotherapy as used in the Intergroup Ewing's Study) appear adequate in controlling the primary tumors of the proximal segments of the spinal column.

  6. Cement augmentation in vertebral burst fractures.

    PubMed

    Zaryanov, Anton V; Park, Daniel K; Khalil, Jad G; Baker, Kevin C; Fischgrund, Jeffrey S

    2014-01-01

    As a result of axial compression, traumatic vertebral burst fractures disrupt the anterior column, leading to segmental instability and cord compression. In situations with diminished anterior column support, pedicle screw fixation alone may lead to delayed kyphosis, nonunion, and hardware failure. Vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty (balloon-assisted vertebroplasty) have been used in an effort to provide anterior column support in traumatic burst fractures. Cited advantages are providing immediate stability, improving pain, and reducing hardware malfunction. When used in isolation or in combination with posterior instrumentation, these techniques theoretically allow for improved fracture reduction and maintenance of spinal alignment while avoiding the complications and morbidity of anterior approaches. Complications associated with cement use (leakage, systemic effects) are similar to those seen in the treatment of osteoporotic compression fractures; however, extreme caution must be used in fractures with a disrupted posterior wall.

  7. Cell fate determination in the vertebrate retina.

    PubMed Central

    Cepko, C L; Austin, C P; Yang, X; Alexiades, M; Ezzeddine, D

    1996-01-01

    In the vertebrate central nervous system, the retina has been a useful model for studies of cell fate determination. Recent results from studies conducted in vitro and in vivo suggest a model of retinal development in which both the progenitor cells and the environment change over time. The model is based upon the notion that the mitotic cells within the retina change in their response properties, or "competence", during development. These changes presage the ordered appearance of distinct cell types during development and appear to be necessary for the production of the distinct cell types. As the response properties of the cells change, so too do the environmental signals that the cells encounter. Together, intrinsic properties and extrinsic cues direct the choice of cell fate. Images Fig. 2 Fig. 5 PMID:8570600

  8. Cost minimization by helpers in cooperative vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Russell, A F; Sharpe, L L; Brotherton, P N M; Clutton-Brock, T H

    2003-03-18

    When parents invest heavily in reproduction they commonly suffer significant energetic costs. Parents reduce the long-term fitness implications of these costs through increased foraging and reduced reproductive investment in the future. Similar behavioral modifications might be expected among helpers in societies of cooperative vertebrates, in which helping is associated with energetic costs. By using multivariate analyses and experiments, we show that in cooperative meerkats, Suricata suricatta, helping is associated with substantial short-term growth costs but limited long-term fitness costs. This association forms because individual contributions to cooperation are initially condition dependent, and, because when helpers invest heavily in cooperation, they increase their foraging rate during the subsequent nonbreeding period and reduce their level of cooperative investment in the subsequent reproductive period. These results provide a unique demonstration that despite significant short-term costs, helpers, like breeders, are able to reduce the fitness consequences of these costs through behavioral modifications.

  9. Salmonella Typhi Vertebral Osteomyelitis and Epidural Abscess

    PubMed Central

    Chua, Ying Ying; Chen, John L. T.

    2016-01-01

    Salmonella vertebral osteomyelitis is an uncommon complication of Salmonella infection. We report a case of a 57-year-old transgender male who presented with lower back pain for a period of one month following a fall. Physical examination only revealed tenderness over the lower back with no neurological deficits. MRI of the thoracic and lumbar spine revealed a spondylodiscitis at T10-T11 and T12-L1 and right posterior epidural collection at the T9-T10 level. He underwent decompression laminectomy with segmental instrumentation and fusion of T8 to L3 vertebrae. Intraoperatively, he was found to have acute-on-chronic osteomyelitis in T10 and T11, epidural abscess, and discitis in T12-L1. Tissue and wound culture grew Salmonella Typhi and with antibiotics susceptibility guidance he was treated with intravenous ceftriaxone for a period of six weeks. He recovered well with no neurological deficits. PMID:27034871

  10. Planar Cell Polarity in vertebrate limb morphogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Bo; Yang, Yingzi

    2013-01-01

    Studies of the vertebrate limb development have contributed significantly to understanding the fundamental mechanisms underlying growth, patterning and morphogenesis of a complex multicellular organism. In the limb, well-defined signaling centers interact to coordinate limb growth and patterning along the three axes. Recent analyses of live imaging and mathematical modeling have provided evidence that polarized cell behaviors governed by morphogen gradients play an important role in shaping the limb bud. Furthermore, the Wnt/Planar Cell Polarity (PCP) pathway that controls uniformly polarized cellular behaviors in a field of cells has emerged to be critical for directional morphogenesis in the developing limb. Directional information coded in the morphogen gradient may be interpreted by responding cells through regulating the activities of PCP components in a Wnt morphogen dose-dependent manner. PMID:23747034

  11. Lysophosphatidic Acid (LPA) Signaling in Vertebrate Reproduction

    PubMed Central

    Ye, Xiaoqin; Chun, Jerold

    2009-01-01

    Lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) is a cell membrane phospholipid metabolite that can act as an extracellular signal. Its effects are mediated through at least five G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs), LPA1-5, and likely others as well. Studies in multiple species including LPA receptor-deficient mice and humans have identified or implicated important roles for receptor-mediated LPA signaling in multiple aspects of vertebrate reproduction. These include ovarian function, spermatogenesis, fertilization, early embryo development, embryo implantation, embryo spacing, decidualization, pregnancy maintenance, and parturition. LPA signaling may also have pathological consequences, influencing aspects of endometriosis and ovarian cancer. Here we review recent progress in LPA signaling research relevant to female and male reproduction. PMID:19836970

  12. Estrogen receptor signaling during vertebrate development

    PubMed Central

    Bondesson, Maria; Hao, Ruixin; Lin, Chin-Yo; Williams, Cecilia; Gustafsson, Jan-Åke

    2014-01-01

    Estrogen receptors are expressed and their cognate ligands produced in all vertebrates, indicative of important and conserved functions. Through evolution estrogen has been involved in controlling reproduction, affecting both the development of reproductive organs and reproductive behavior. This review broadly describes the synthesis of estrogens and the expression patterns of aromatase and the estrogen receptors, in relation to estrogen functions in the developing fetus and child. We focus on the role of estrogens for development of reproductive tissues, as well as non-reproductive effects on the developing brain. We collate data from human, rodent, bird and fish studies and highlight common and species-specific effects of estrogen signaling on fetal development. Morphological malformations originating from perturbed estrogen signaling in estrogen receptor and aromatase knockout mice are discussed, as well as the clinical manifestations of rare estrogen receptor alpha and aromatase gene mutations in humans. PMID:24954179

  13. Cost minimization by helpers in cooperative vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Russell, A F; Sharpe, L L; Brotherton, P N M; Clutton-Brock, T H

    2003-03-18

    When parents invest heavily in reproduction they commonly suffer significant energetic costs. Parents reduce the long-term fitness implications of these costs through increased foraging and reduced reproductive investment in the future. Similar behavioral modifications might be expected among helpers in societies of cooperative vertebrates, in which helping is associated with energetic costs. By using multivariate analyses and experiments, we show that in cooperative meerkats, Suricata suricatta, helping is associated with substantial short-term growth costs but limited long-term fitness costs. This association forms because individual contributions to cooperation are initially condition dependent, and, because when helpers invest heavily in cooperation, they increase their foraging rate during the subsequent nonbreeding period and reduce their level of cooperative investment in the subsequent reproductive period. These results provide a unique demonstration that despite significant short-term costs, helpers, like breeders, are able to reduce the fitness consequences of these costs through behavioral modifications. PMID:12629209

  14. Vertebral surface registration using ridgelines/crestlines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tan, Sovira; Yao, Jianhua; Yao, Lawrence; Summers, Ronald M.; Ward, Michael M.

    2008-03-01

    The Iterative Closest Point (ICP) algorithm is an efficient and popular technique for surface registration. It however suffers from the well-known problem of local minima that make the algorithm stop before it reaches the desired global solution. ICP can be improved by the use of landmarks or features. We recently developed a level set capable of evolving on the surface of an object represented by a triangular mesh. This level set permits the segmentation of portions of a surface based on curvature features. The boundary of a segmented portion forms a ridgeline/crestline. We show that the ridgelines/crestlines and corresponding enclosed surfaces extracted by the algorithm can substantially improve ICP registration. We compared the performance of an ICP algorithm in three setups: 1) ICP without landmarks. 2) ICP using ridgelines. 3) ICP using ridgelines and corresponding enclosed surfaces. Our material consists of vertebral body surfaces extracted for a study about the progression of Ankylosing Spondylitis. Same vertebrae scanned at intervals of one or two years were rigidly registered. Vertebral body rims and the end plate surfaces they enclose were used as landmarks. The performance measure was the mean error distance between the registered surfaces. From the one hundred registrations that we performed the average mean error was respectively 0.503mm, 0.335mm and 0.254mm for the three setups. Setup 3 almost halved the average error of setup 1. Moreover the error range is dramatically reduced from [0.0985, 2.19]mm to just [0.0865, 0.532]mm, making the algorithm very robust.

  15. Somitomeres: mesodermal segments of vertebrate embryos.

    PubMed

    Jacobson, A G

    1988-01-01

    Well before the somites form, the paraxial mesoderm of vertebrate embryos is segmented into somitomeres. When newly formed, somitomeres are patterned arrays of mesenchymal cells, arranged into squat, bilaminar discs. The dorsal and ventral faces of these discs are composed of concentric rings of cells. Somitomeres are formed along the length of the embryo during gastrulation, and in the segmental plate and tail bud at later stages. They form in strict cranial to caudal order. They appear in bilateral pairs, just lateral to Hensen's node in the chick embryo. When the nervous system begins to form, the brain parts and neuromeres are in a consistent relationship to the somitomeres. Somitomeres first appear in the head, and the cranial somitomeres do not become somites, but disperse to contribute to the head the same cell types contributed by somites in the trunk region. In the trunk and tail, somitomeres gradually condense and epithelialize to become somites. Models of vertebrate segmentation must now take into account the early presence of these new morphological units, the somitomeres. Somitomeres were discovered in the head of the chick embryo (Meier, 1979), with the use of stereo scanning electron microscopy. The old question of whether the heads of the craniates are segmented is now settled, at least for the paraxial mesoderm. Somitomeres have now been identified in the embryos of a chick, quail, mouse, snapping turtle, newt, anuran (Xenopus) and a teleost (the medaka). In all forms studied, the first pair of somitomeres abut the prosencephalon, but caudal to that, for each tandem pair of somitomeres in the amniote and teleost, there is but one somitomere in the amphibia. The mesodermal segments of the shark embryo are arranged like those of the amphibia.

  16. De novo synthesis of a sunscreen compound in vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Osborn, Andrew R; Almabruk, Khaled H; Holzwarth, Garrett; Asamizu, Shumpei; LaDu, Jane; Kean, Kelsey M; Karplus, P Andrew; Tanguay, Robert L; Bakalinsky, Alan T; Mahmud, Taifo

    2015-01-01

    Ultraviolet-protective compounds, such as mycosporine-like amino acids (MAAs) and related gadusols produced by some bacteria, fungi, algae, and marine invertebrates, are critical for the survival of reef-building corals and other marine organisms exposed to high-solar irradiance. These compounds have also been found in marine fish, where their accumulation is thought to be of dietary or symbiont origin. In this study, we report the unexpected discovery that fish can synthesize gadusol de novo and that the analogous pathways are also present in amphibians, reptiles, and birds. Furthermore, we demonstrate that engineered yeast containing the fish genes can produce and secrete gadusol. The discovery of the gadusol pathway in vertebrates provides a platform for understanding its role in these animals, and the possibility of engineering yeast to efficiently produce a natural sunscreen and antioxidant presents an avenue for its large-scale production for possible use in pharmaceuticals and cosmetics. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.05919.001 PMID:25965179

  17. Avoidance and tolerance of freezing in ectothermic vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Costanzo, Jon P; Lee, Richard E

    2013-06-01

    Ectothermic vertebrates have colonized regions that are seasonally or perpetually cold, and some species, particularly terrestrial hibernators, must cope with temperatures that fall substantially below 0°C. Survival of such excursions depends on either freeze avoidance through supercooling or freeze tolerance. Supercooling, a metastable state in which body fluids remain liquid below the equilibrium freezing/melting point, is promoted by physiological responses that protect against chilling injury and by anatomical and behavioral traits that limit risk of inoculative freezing by environmental ice and ice-nucleating agents. Freeze tolerance evolved from responses to fundamental stresses to permit survival of the freezing of a substantial amount of body water under thermal and temporal conditions of ecological relevance. Survival of freezing is promoted by a complex suite of molecular, biochemical and physiological responses that limit cell death from excessive shrinkage, damage to macromolecules and membranes, metabolic perturbation and oxidative stress. Although freeze avoidance and freeze tolerance generally are mutually exclusive strategies, a few species can switch between them, the mode used in a particular instance of chilling depending on prevailing physiological and environmental conditions.

  18. Avoidance and tolerance of freezing in ectothermic vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Costanzo, Jon P; Lee, Richard E

    2013-06-01

    Ectothermic vertebrates have colonized regions that are seasonally or perpetually cold, and some species, particularly terrestrial hibernators, must cope with temperatures that fall substantially below 0°C. Survival of such excursions depends on either freeze avoidance through supercooling or freeze tolerance. Supercooling, a metastable state in which body fluids remain liquid below the equilibrium freezing/melting point, is promoted by physiological responses that protect against chilling injury and by anatomical and behavioral traits that limit risk of inoculative freezing by environmental ice and ice-nucleating agents. Freeze tolerance evolved from responses to fundamental stresses to permit survival of the freezing of a substantial amount of body water under thermal and temporal conditions of ecological relevance. Survival of freezing is promoted by a complex suite of molecular, biochemical and physiological responses that limit cell death from excessive shrinkage, damage to macromolecules and membranes, metabolic perturbation and oxidative stress. Although freeze avoidance and freeze tolerance generally are mutually exclusive strategies, a few species can switch between them, the mode used in a particular instance of chilling depending on prevailing physiological and environmental conditions. PMID:23678097

  19. Collection & Processing of Vertebrate Specimens for Arbovirus Studies.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sudia, W. Daniel; And Others

    Described are techniques used by the National Communicable Disease Center in obtaining blood and tissues from man and other vertebrates for arbovirus isolation and antibody studies. Also included are techniques for capturing and handling vertebrates; banding and marking; restraining and bleeding; storing of specimens to preserve antibody and…

  20. L1 burst fracture with associated vertebral angioma.

    PubMed

    Armaganian, G; Adetchessi, T; Pech-Gourg, G; Blondel, B; Dufour, H; Fuentes, S

    2013-04-01

    Vertebral angioma is a common bone tumor. We report a case of L1 vertebral angioma revealed by type A3.2 traumatic pathological fracture of the same vertebra. Management comprised emergency percutaneous osteosynthesis and, after stabilization of the multiple trauma, arterial embolization and percutaneous kyphoplasty.

  1. Thoracic vertebral osteomyelitis: an unusual complication of Crohn's disease.

    PubMed

    Ajayi, Olushola; Mayooran, Nithiananthan; Iqbal, Nasir

    2014-01-01

    Vertebral osteomyelitis complicating Crohn's disease is a rare occurrence and mostly occurred in patients with Crohn's disease complicated by an abscess or fistulising disease. We report a case of thoracic vertebral osteomyelitis, occurring in a refractory Crohn's disease without contiguous abscess or fistula with the bowel. PMID:24916975

  2. Vertebrate Osmoregulation: A Student Laboratory Exercise Using Teleost Fish

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Boily P.; Rees, B. B.; Williamson, L. A. C.

    2007-01-01

    Here, we describe a laboratory experiment as part of an upper-level vertebrate physiology course for biology majors to investigate the physiological response of vertebrates to osmoregulatory challenges. The experiment involves measuring plasma osmolality and Na[superscript +] -K[superscript +] -ATPase activity in gill tissue of teleost fish…

  3. Cooperative Learning as a Tool To Teach Vertebrate Anatomy.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Koprowski, John L.; Perigo, Nan

    2000-01-01

    Describes a method for teaching biology that includes more investigative exercises that foster an environment for cooperative learning in introductory laboratories that focus on vertebrates. Fosters collaborative learning by facilitating interaction between students as they become experts on their representative vertebrate structures. (SAH)

  4. Fossil jawless fish from China foreshadows early jawed vertebrate anatomy.

    PubMed

    Gai, Zhikun; Donoghue, Philip C J; Zhu, Min; Janvier, Philippe; Stampanoni, Marco

    2011-08-17

    Most living vertebrates are jawed vertebrates (gnathostomes), and the living jawless vertebrates (cyclostomes), hagfishes and lampreys, provide scarce information about the profound reorganization of the vertebrate skull during the evolutionary origin of jaws. The extinct bony jawless vertebrates, or 'ostracoderms', are regarded as precursors of jawed vertebrates and provide insight into this formative episode in vertebrate evolution. Here, using synchrotron radiation X-ray tomography, we describe the cranial anatomy of galeaspids, a 435-370-million-year-old 'ostracoderm' group from China and Vietnam. The paired nasal sacs of galeaspids are located anterolaterally in the braincase, and the hypophyseal duct opens anteriorly towards the oral cavity. These three structures (the paired nasal sacs and the hypophyseal duct) were thus already independent of each other, like in gnathostomes and unlike in cyclostomes and osteostracans (another 'ostracoderm' group), and therefore have the condition that current developmental models regard as prerequisites for the development of jaws. This indicates that the reorganization of vertebrate cranial anatomy was not driven deterministically by the evolutionary origin of jaws but occurred stepwise, ultimately allowing the rostral growth of ectomesenchyme that now characterizes gnathostome head development.

  5. Midterm Follow-Up of Vertebral Geometry and Remodeling of the Vertebral Bidisk Unit (VDU) After Percutaneous Vertebroplasty of Osteoporotic Vertebral Fractures

    SciTech Connect

    Pitton, Michael Bernhard Koch, Ulrike; Drees, Philip; Dueber, Christoph

    2009-09-15

    The purpose of this study was to investigate geometrical stability and preservation of height gain of vertebral bodies after percutaneous vertebroplasty during 2 years' follow-up and to elucidate the geometric remodeling process of the vertebral bidisk unit (VDU) of the affected segment. Patients with osteoporotic vertebral compression fractures with pain resistant to analgetic drugs were treated with polymethylmethacrylate vertebroplasty. Mean {+-} standard error cement volume was 5.1 {+-} 2.0 ml. Vertebral geometry was documented by sagittal and coronal reformations from multidetector computed tomography data sets: anterior, posterior, and lateral vertebral heights, end plate angles, and compression index (CI = anterior/posterior height). Additionally, the VDU (vertebral bodies plus both adjacent disk spaces) was calculated from the multidetector computed tomography data sets: anterior, posterior, and both lateral aspects. Patients were assigned to two groups: moderate compression with CI of >0.75 (group 1) and severe compression with CI of <0.75 (group 2). A total of 83 vertebral bodies of 30 patients (7 men, 23 women, age 70.7 {+-} 9.7 years, range 40-82 years) were treated with vertebroplasty and prospectively followed for 24 months. In the moderate compression group (group 1), the vertebral heights were stabilized over time at the preinterventional levels. Compared with group 1, group 2 showed a greater anterior height gain (+2.8 {+-} 2.2 mm vs. +0.8 {+-} 2.0 mm, P < 0.001), better reduction of end plate angle (-4.9 {+-} 4.8{sup o} vs. -1.0 {+-} 2.7{sup o}, P < 0.01), and improved CI (+0.12 {+-} 0.13 vs. +0.02 {+-} 0.07, P < 0.01) and demonstrated preserved anterior height gain at 2 years (+1.2 {+-} 3.2 mm, P < 0.01) as well as improved end plate angles (-5.2 {+-} 5.0{sup o}, P < 0.01) and compression indices (+0.11 {+-} 0.15, P < 0.01). Thus, posterior height loss of vertebrae and adjacent intervertebral disk spaces contributed to a remodeling of the VDU

  6. Nuisance arthropods, nonhost odors, and vertebrate chemical aposematism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weldon, Paul J.

    2010-05-01

    Mosquitoes, ticks, and other ectoparasitic arthropods use chemoreception to avoid vertebrates that are known or presumed to be dangerous or otherwise unprofitable hosts. Nonhosts may belong to a species that is regularly unaccepted or one that includes both accepted and unaccepted individuals. A diverse array of qualities including immunocompetence, vigilant grooming behavior, mechanical inaccessibility, and toxicity have been proposed as the features that render vertebrate chemical emitters unsuitable as hosts for arthropods. In addition to advantages accrued by ectoparasitic arthropods that avoid nonhosts, vertebrates that are not accepted as hosts benefit by evading injurious ectoparasites and the infectious agents they transmit. The conferral of advantages to both chemical receivers (ectoparasitic arthropods) and emitters (unpreferred vertebrates) in these interactions renders nonhost odors aposematic. Chemical aposematism involving ectoparasites selects for vertebrates that emit distinctive odors. In addition, chemical mimicry, where vulnerable organisms benefit when misidentified as nonhosts, may be accommodated by duped ectoparasites.

  7. The generation of vertebral segmental patterning in the chick embryo.

    PubMed

    Senthinathan, Biruntha; Sousa, Cátia; Tannahill, David; Keynes, Roger

    2012-06-01

    We have carried out a series of experimental manipulations in the chick embryo to assess whether the notochord, neural tube and spinal nerves influence segmental patterning of the vertebral column. Using Pax1 expression in the somite-derived sclerotomes as a marker for segmentation of the developing intervertebral disc, our results exclude such an influence. In contrast to certain teleost species, where the notochord has been shown to generate segmentation of the vertebral bodies (chordacentra), these experiments indicate that segmental patterning of the avian vertebral column arises autonomously in the somite mesoderm. We suggest that in amniotes, the subdivision of each sclerotome into non-miscible anterior and posterior halves plays a critical role in establishing vertebral segmentation, and in maintaining left/right alignment of the developing vertebral elements at the body midline.

  8. Evolution of the Vertebrate Cranium: Viewed from Hagfish Developmental Studies.

    PubMed

    Kuratani, Shigeru; Oisi, Yasuhiro; Ota, Kinya G

    2016-06-01

    Our knowledge of vertebrate cranium evolution has relied largely on the study of gnathostomes. Recent evolutionary and developmental studies of cyclostomes have shed new light on the history of the vertebrate skull. The recent ability to obtain embryos of the hagfish, Eptatretus burgeri, has enabled new studies which have suggested an embryonic morphological pattern (the "cyclostome pattern") of craniofacial development. This pattern is shared by cyclostomes, but not by modern jawed vertebrates. Because this pattern of embryonic head development is thought to be present in some stem gnathostomes (ostracoderms), it is possible that the cyclostome pattern represents the vertebrate ancestral pattern. The study of cyclostomes may thus lead to an understanding of the most ancestral basis of craniofacial development. In this review, we summarize the development of the hagfish chondrocranium in light of the cyclostome pattern, present an updated comparison of the cyclostome chondrocranium, and discuss several aspects of the evolution and development of the vertebrate skull. PMID:27268976

  9. Non-contiguous multifocal vertebral osteomyelitis caused by Serratia marcescens.

    PubMed

    Lau, Jen Xin; Li, Jordan Yuanzhi; Yong, Tuck Yean

    2015-03-01

    Serratia marcescens is a common nosocomial infection but a rare cause of osteomyelitis and more so of vertebral osteomyelitis. Vertebral osteomyelitis caused by this organism has been reported in few studies. We report a case of S. marcescens vertebral discitis and osteomyelitis affecting multiple non-contiguous vertebras. Although Staphylococcus aureus is the most common cause of vertebral osteomyelitis, rare causes, such as S. marcescens, need to be considered, especially when risk factors such as intravenous heroin use, post-spinal surgery and immunosuppression are present. Therefore, blood culture and where necessary biopsy of the infected region should be undertaken to establish the causative organism and determine appropriate antibiotic susceptibility. Prompt diagnosis of S. marcescens vertebral osteomyelitis followed by the appropriate treatment can achieve successful outcomes.

  10. Evolution of vertebrate forebrain development: how many different mechanisms?

    PubMed

    Foley, A C; Stern, C D

    2001-01-01

    hypoblast plays a role in directing cell movements in the adjacent epiblast. These movements distance the future forebrain territory from the developing organiser (Hensen's node), and we suggest that this is a mechanism to protect the forebrain from caudalising signals from the node. These mechanisms are consistent with all the findings obtained from the mouse to date. We conclude that the mechanisms responsible for setting up the forebrain and more caudal regions of the nervous system are probably similar among different classes of higher vertebrates. Moreover, while reconciling the two main models, our findings provide stronger support for Nieuwkoop's ideas than for the concept of multiple organisers, each inducing a distinct region of the CNS.

  11. The Lamprey: A jawless vertebrate model system for examining origin of the neural crest and other vertebrate traits

    PubMed Central

    Green, Stephen A.; Bronner, Marianne E.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Lampreys are a group of jawless fishes that serve as an important point of comparison for studies of vertebrate evolution. Lampreys and hagfishes are agnathan fishes, the cyclostomes, which sit at a crucial phylogenetic position as the only living sister group of the jawed vertebrates. Comparisons between cyclostomes and jawed vertebrates can help identify shared derived (i.e. synapomorphic) traits that might have been inherited from ancestral early vertebrates, if unlikely to have arisen convergently by chance. One example of a uniquely vertebrate trait is the neural crest, an embryonic tissue that produces many cell types crucial to vertebrate features, such as the craniofacial skeleton, pigmentation of the skin, and much of the peripheral nervous system (Gans and Northcutt, 1983). Invertebrate chordates arguably lack unambiguous neural crest homologs, yet have cells with some similarities, making comparisons with lampreys and jawed vertebrates essential for inferring characteristics of development in early vertebrates, and how they may have evolved from nonvertebrate chordates. Here we review recent research on cyclostome neural crest development, including research on lamprey gene regulatory networks and differentiated neural crest fates. PMID:24560767

  12. The lamprey: a jawless vertebrate model system for examining origin of the neural crest and other vertebrate traits.

    PubMed

    Green, Stephen A; Bronner, Marianne E

    2014-01-01

    Lampreys are a group of jawless fishes that serve as an important point of comparison for studies of vertebrate evolution. Lampreys and hagfishes are agnathan fishes, the cyclostomes, which sit at a crucial phylogenetic position as the only living sister group of the jawed vertebrates. Comparisons between cyclostomes and jawed vertebrates can help identify shared derived (i.e. synapomorphic) traits that might have been inherited from ancestral early vertebrates, if unlikely to have arisen convergently by chance. One example of a uniquely vertebrate trait is the neural crest, an embryonic tissue that produces many cell types crucial to vertebrate features, such as the craniofacial skeleton, pigmentation of the skin, and much of the peripheral nervous system (Gans and Northcutt, 1983). Invertebrate chordates arguably lack unambiguous neural crest homologs, yet have cells with some similarities, making comparisons with lampreys and jawed vertebrates essential for inferring characteristics of development in early vertebrates, and how they may have evolved from nonvertebrate chordates. Here we review recent research on cyclostome neural crest development, including research on lamprey gene regulatory networks and differentiated neural crest fates.

  13. Do lower vertebrates suffer from motion sickness?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lychakov, Dmitri

    The poster presents literature data and results of the author’s studies with the goal to find out whether the lower animals are susceptible to motion sickness (Lychakov, 2012). In our studies, fish and amphibians were tested for 2 h and more by using a rotating device (f = 0.24 Hz, a _{centrifugal} = 0.144 g) and a parallel swing (f = 0.2 Hz, a _{horizontal} = 0.059 g). The performed studies did not revealed in 4 fish species and in toads any characteristic reactions of the motion sickness (sopite syndrome, prodromal preparatory behavior, vomiting). At the same time, in toads there appeared characteristic stress reactions (escape response, an increase of the number of urinations, inhibition of appetite), as well as some other reactions not associated with motion sickness (regular head movements, eye retractions). In trout fry the used stimulation promoted division of the individuals into the groups differing by locomotor reaction to stress, as well as the individuals with the well-expressed compensatory reaction that we called the otolithotropic reaction. Analysis of results obtained by other authors confirms our conclusions. Thus, the lower vertebrates, unlike mammals, are immune to motion sickness either under the land conditions or under conditions of weightlessness. On the basis of available experimental data and theoretical concepts of mechanisms of development the motion sickness, formulated in several hypotheses (mismatch hypothesis, Traisman‘ s hypothesis, resonance hypothesis), there presented the synthetic hypothesis of motion sickness that has the conceptual significance. According to the hypothesis, the unusual stimulation producing sensor-motor or sensor-sensor conflict or an action of vestibular and visual stimuli of frequency of about 0.2 Hz is perceived by CNS as poisoning and causes the corresponding reactions. The motion sickness actually is a byproduct of technical evolution. It is suggested that in the lower vertebrates, unlike mammals

  14. Coastal vertebrate exposure to predicted habitat changes due to sea level rise

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hunter, Elizabeth A.; Nibbelink, Nathan P.; Alexander, Clark R.; Barrett, Kyle; Mengak, Lara F.; Guy, Rachel; Moore, Clinton; Cooper, Robert J.

    2015-01-01

    Sea level rise (SLR) may degrade habitat for coastal vertebrates in the Southeastern United States, but it is unclear which groups or species will be most exposed to habitat changes. We assessed 28 coastal Georgia vertebrate species for their exposure to potential habitat changes due to SLR using output from the Sea Level Affecting Marshes Model and information on the species’ fundamental niches. We assessed forecasted habitat change up to the year 2100 using three structural habitat metrics: total area, patch size, and habitat permanence. Almost all of the species (n = 24) experienced negative habitat changes due to SLR as measured by at least one of the metrics. Salt marsh and ocean beach habitats experienced the most change (out of 16 categorical land cover types) across the three metrics and species that used salt marsh extensively (rails and marsh sparrows) were ranked highest for exposure to habitat changes. Species that nested on ocean beaches (Diamondback Terrapins, shorebirds, and terns) were also ranked highly, but their use of other foraging habitats reduced their overall exposure. Future studies on potential effects of SLR on vertebrates in southeastern coastal ecosystems should focus on the relative importance of different habitat types to these species’ foraging and nesting requirements. Our straightforward prioritization approach is applicable to other coastal systems and can provide insight to managers on which species to focus resources, what components of their habitats need to be protected, and which locations in the study area will provide habitat refuges in the face of SLR.

  15. Coastal Vertebrate Exposure to Predicted Habitat Changes Due to Sea Level Rise.

    PubMed

    Hunter, Elizabeth A; Nibbelink, Nathan P; Alexander, Clark R; Barrett, Kyle; Mengak, Lara F; Guy, Rachel K; Moore, Clinton T; Cooper, Robert J

    2015-12-01

    Sea level rise (SLR) may degrade habitat for coastal vertebrates in the Southeastern United States, but it is unclear which groups or species will be most exposed to habitat changes. We assessed 28 coastal Georgia vertebrate species for their exposure to potential habitat changes due to SLR using output from the Sea Level Affecting Marshes Model and information on the species' fundamental niches. We assessed forecasted habitat change up to the year 2100 using three structural habitat metrics: total area, patch size, and habitat permanence. Almost all of the species (n = 24) experienced negative habitat changes due to SLR as measured by at least one of the metrics. Salt marsh and ocean beach habitats experienced the most change (out of 16 categorical land cover types) across the three metrics and species that used salt marsh extensively (rails and marsh sparrows) were ranked highest for exposure to habitat changes. Species that nested on ocean beaches (Diamondback Terrapins, shorebirds, and terns) were also ranked highly, but their use of other foraging habitats reduced their overall exposure. Future studies on potential effects of SLR on vertebrates in southeastern coastal ecosystems should focus on the relative importance of different habitat types to these species' foraging and nesting requirements. Our straightforward prioritization approach is applicable to other coastal systems and can provide insight to managers on which species to focus resources, what components of their habitats need to be protected, and which locations in the study area will provide habitat refuges in the face of SLR.

  16. Coastal Vertebrate Exposure to Predicted Habitat Changes Due to Sea Level Rise

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hunter, Elizabeth A.; Nibbelink, Nathan P.; Alexander, Clark R.; Barrett, Kyle; Mengak, Lara F.; Guy, Rachel K.; Moore, Clinton T.; Cooper, Robert J.

    2015-12-01

    Sea level rise (SLR) may degrade habitat for coastal vertebrates in the Southeastern United States, but it is unclear which groups or species will be most exposed to habitat changes. We assessed 28 coastal Georgia vertebrate species for their exposure to potential habitat changes due to SLR using output from the Sea Level Affecting Marshes Model and information on the species' fundamental niches. We assessed forecasted habitat change up to the year 2100 using three structural habitat metrics: total area, patch size, and habitat permanence. Almost all of the species ( n = 24) experienced negative habitat changes due to SLR as measured by at least one of the metrics. Salt marsh and ocean beach habitats experienced the most change (out of 16 categorical land cover types) across the three metrics and species that used salt marsh extensively (rails and marsh sparrows) were ranked highest for exposure to habitat changes. Species that nested on ocean beaches (Diamondback Terrapins, shorebirds, and terns) were also ranked highly, but their use of other foraging habitats reduced their overall exposure. Future studies on potential effects of SLR on vertebrates in southeastern coastal ecosystems should focus on the relative importance of different habitat types to these species' foraging and nesting requirements. Our straightforward prioritization approach is applicable to other coastal systems and can provide insight to managers on which species to focus resources, what components of their habitats need to be protected, and which locations in the study area will provide habitat refuges in the face of SLR.

  17. Large interarcuate spaces in the cervical vertebral column of the tyrolean mountain sheep.

    PubMed

    Turkof, E; Jurasch, N; Grassberger, M; Schwendenwein, S; Habib, D; Knolle, E; Losert, U

    2003-02-01

    Large interarcual spaces have been described between the arcus vertebrae C5/C6 and C6/C7 in the cervical vertebral column of Nubian goats. This aperture enables direct access to spinal cord and rootlets without the need to perform a hemilaminectomy. The present study was performed in order to determine whether these large interarcual spaces can also be found in the vertebral column of the Tyrolean mountain sheep, as this small ruminant, which is anatomically very similar to the Nubian goat, is frequently used for experimental purposes at the Surgical University Clinic in Austria. The carcasses of 10 sheep (six females, four males; range of age: 2.5-6 years, range of weight: 52-89 kg) were dissected and the vertebral column was exposed. All 10 sheep showed elliptic openings between the fourth cervical and the first thoracal vertebrae. Three sheep had additional openings between the first and the second thoracal vertebrae. All openings were covered solitarily by the ligamentum flavum and under this ligamentum lay the spinal cord without any further osseous or ligamentous protection. These findings are not mentioned in the common textbooks of veterinary anatomy and deserve attention, as they can be a step forward towards non-traumatic experimental surgery on the spinal cord.

  18. Contaminant effect endpoints in terrestrial vertebrates at and above the individual level

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rattner, B.A.; Cohen, J.B.; Golden, N.H.; Albers, P.H.; Heinz, G.H.; Ohlendorf, H.M.

    2000-01-01

    Use of biochemical, physiological, anatomical, reproductive and behavioral characteristics of wild terrestrial vertebrates to assess contaminant exposure and effects has become commonplace over the past 3 decades. At the level of the individual organism, response patterns have been associated with and sometimes causally linked to contaminant exposure. However, such responses at the organismal level are rarely associated with or causally linked to effects at the population level. Although the ultimate goal of ecotoxicology is the protection of populations, communities, and ecosystems, most of the existing science and regulatory legislation focus on the level of the individual. Consequently, much of this overview concentrates on contaminant effects at the organismal level, with some extrapolation to higher-level effects. In this chapter, we review the state of the science for the evaluation of biotic end-points used to assess contaminant exposure and effects at or above the level of the individual. In addition, we describe extant contaminant concentration thresholds, guidelines, or standards (toxicant criteria) in environmental matrices (e.g., water, soil, sediment, foods) that have been developed to protect wild terrestrial vertebrates. Suggestions are provided to develop and embellish the use and value of such endpoints and criteria for extrapolation of effects to higher levels of biological organization. Increasing focus on populations, communities, and ecosystems is needed to develop biologically meaningful regulatory guidelines that will protect natural resources.

  19. A revised metric for quantifying body shape in vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Collar, David C; Reynaga, Crystal M; Ward, Andrea B; Mehta, Rita S

    2013-08-01

    Vertebrates exhibit tremendous diversity in body shape, though quantifying this variation has been challenging. In the past, researchers have used simplified metrics that either describe overall shape but reveal little about its anatomical basis or that characterize only a subset of the morphological features that contribute to shape variation. Here, we present a revised metric of body shape, the vertebrate shape index (VSI), which combines the four primary morphological components that lead to shape diversity in vertebrates: head shape, length of the second major body axis (depth or width), and shape of the precaudal and caudal regions of the vertebral column. We illustrate the usefulness of VSI on a data set of 194 species, primarily representing five major vertebrate clades: Actinopterygii, Lissamphibia, Squamata, Aves, and Mammalia. We quantify VSI diversity within each of these clades and, in the course of doing so, show how measurements of the morphological components of VSI can be obtained from radiographs, articulated skeletons, and cleared and stained specimens. We also demonstrate that head shape, secondary body axis, and vertebral characteristics are important independent contributors to body shape diversity, though their importance varies across vertebrate groups. Finally, we present a functional application of VSI to test a hypothesized relationship between body shape and the degree of axial bending associated with locomotor modes in ray-finned fishes. Altogether, our study highlights the promise VSI holds for identifying the morphological variation underlying body shape diversity as well as the selective factors driving shape evolution.

  20. Vertebral fracture after aircraft ejection during Operation Desert Storm.

    PubMed

    Osborne, R G; Cook, A A

    1997-04-01

    During Operation Desert Storm, 21 United States and 2 Italian military personnel were held in Iraq as prisoners of war. Of these, 18 had ejected from fixed-wing, ejection seat-equipped, combat aircraft prior to their capture. Of the 18, 6 (33%) had sustained vertebral fractures; 4 of these were compression fractures. This fracture rate is comparable to that of previously studied groups. Fractures were noted to be at several different vertebral sites and after ejecting from a variety of aircraft. Apart from contusions and abrasions, vertebral fractures were the most common injuries discovered in this repatriated population. None of the vertebral fractures produced recognizable neurological disability. The development of vertebral fractures was neither associated with the use of any particular ejection system or aircraft nor did the development of vertebral fractures appear dependent on the age, height or length of service of the affected personnel. Ejected aircrew with low altitude mission profiles seemed more predisposed to vertebral fracture than those at high altitudes, but with a small sample population, this relationship was not statistically significant (p > 0.25). Reliable data were unavailable on aircrew positioning and preparation time for ejection. PMID:9096832

  1. Thyroglobulin Represents a Novel Molecular Architecture of Vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Holzer, Guillaume; Morishita, Yoshiaki; Fini, Jean-Baptiste; Lorin, Thibault; Gillet, Benjamin; Hughes, Sandrine; Tohmé, Marie; Deléage, Gilbert; Demeneix, Barbara; Arvan, Peter; Laudet, Vincent

    2016-08-01

    Thyroid hormones modulate not only multiple functions in vertebrates (energy metabolism, central nervous system function, seasonal changes in physiology, and behavior) but also in some non-vertebrates where they control critical post-embryonic developmental transitions such as metamorphosis. Despite their obvious biological importance, the thyroid hormone precursor protein, thyroglobulin (Tg), has been experimentally investigated only in mammals. This may bias our view of how thyroid hormones are produced in other organisms. In this study we searched genomic databases and found Tg orthologs in all vertebrates including the sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus). We cloned a full-size Tg coding sequence from western clawed frog (Xenopus tropicalis) and zebrafish (Danio rerio). Comparisons between the representative mammal, amphibian, teleost fish, and basal vertebrate indicate that all of the different domains of Tg, as well as Tg regional structure, are conserved throughout the vertebrates. Indeed, in Xenopus, zebrafish, and lamprey Tgs, key residues, including the hormonogenic tyrosines and the disulfide bond-forming cysteines critical for Tg function, are well conserved despite overall divergence of amino acid sequences. We uncovered upstream sequences that include start codons of zebrafish and Xenopus Tgs and experimentally proved that these are full-length secreted proteins, which are specifically recognized by antibodies against rat Tg. By contrast, we have not been able to find any orthologs of Tg among non-vertebrate species. Thus, Tg appears to be a novel protein elaborated as a single event at the base of vertebrates and virtually unchanged thereafter. PMID:27311711

  2. 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.

  3. A revised metric for quantifying body shape in vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Collar, David C; Reynaga, Crystal M; Ward, Andrea B; Mehta, Rita S

    2013-08-01

    Vertebrates exhibit tremendous diversity in body shape, though quantifying this variation has been challenging. In the past, researchers have used simplified metrics that either describe overall shape but reveal little about its anatomical basis or that characterize only a subset of the morphological features that contribute to shape variation. Here, we present a revised metric of body shape, the vertebrate shape index (VSI), which combines the four primary morphological components that lead to shape diversity in vertebrates: head shape, length of the second major body axis (depth or width), and shape of the precaudal and caudal regions of the vertebral column. We illustrate the usefulness of VSI on a data set of 194 species, primarily representing five major vertebrate clades: Actinopterygii, Lissamphibia, Squamata, Aves, and Mammalia. We quantify VSI diversity within each of these clades and, in the course of doing so, show how measurements of the morphological components of VSI can be obtained from radiographs, articulated skeletons, and cleared and stained specimens. We also demonstrate that head shape, secondary body axis, and vertebral characteristics are important independent contributors to body shape diversity, though their importance varies across vertebrate groups. Finally, we present a functional application of VSI to test a hypothesized relationship between body shape and the degree of axial bending associated with locomotor modes in ray-finned fishes. Altogether, our study highlights the promise VSI holds for identifying the morphological variation underlying body shape diversity as well as the selective factors driving shape evolution. PMID:23746908

  4. Fatal Vertebral Artery Injury in Penetrating Cervical Spine Trauma

    PubMed Central

    Tannoury, Chadi; Degiacomo, Anthony

    2015-01-01

    Study Design. This case illustrates complications to a vertebral artery injury (VAI) resulting from penetrating cervical spine trauma. Objectives. To discuss the management of both VAI and cervical spine trauma after penetrating gunshot wound to the neck. Summary of Background Data. Vertebral artery injury following cervical spine trauma is infrequent, and a unilateral VAI often occurs without neurologic sequela. Nevertheless, devastating complications of stroke and death do occur. Methods. A gunshot wound to the neck resulted in a C6 vertebral body fracture and C5–C7 transverse foramina fractures. Neck CT angiogram identified a left vertebral artery occlusion. A cerebral angiography confirmed occlusion of the left extracranial vertebral artery and patency of the remaining cerebrovascular system. Following anterior cervical corpectomy and stabilization, brainstem infarction occurred and resulted in death. Results. A fatal outcome resulted from vertebral artery thrombus propagation with occlusion of the basilar artery triggering basilar ischemia and subsequent brainstem and cerebellar infarction. Conclusions. Vertebral artery injury secondary to cervical spine trauma can lead to potentially devastating neurologic sequela. Early surgical stabilization, along with anticoagulation therapy, contributes towards managing the combination of injuries. Unfortunately, despite efforts, a poor outcome is sometimes inevitable when cervical spine trauma is coupled with a VAI. PMID:26640731

  5. Evolution and development of the vertebrate ear

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fritzsch, B.; Beisel, K. W.

    2001-01-01

    This review outlines major aspects of development and evolution of the ear, specifically addressing issues of cell fate commitment and the emerging molecular governance of these decisions. Available data support the notion of homology of subsets of mechanosensors across phyla (proprioreceptive mechanosensory neurons in insects, hair cells in vertebrates). It is argued that this conservation is primarily related to the specific transducing environment needed to achieve mechanosensation. Achieving this requires highly conserved transcription factors that regulate the expression of the relevant structural genes for mechanosensory transduction. While conserved at the level of some cell fate assignment genes (atonal and its mammalian homologue), the ear has also radically reorganized its development by implementing genes used for cell fate assignment in other parts of the developing nervous systems (e.g., neurogenin 1) and by evolving novel sets of genes specifically associated with the novel formation of sensory neurons that contact hair cells (neurotrophins and their receptors). Numerous genes have been identified that regulate morphogenesis, but there is only one common feature that emerges at the moment: the ear appears to have co-opted genes from a large variety of other parts of the developing body (forebrain, limbs, kidneys) and establishes, in combination with existing transcription factors, an environment in which those genes govern novel, ear-related morphogenetic aspects. The ear thus represents a unique mix of highly conserved developmental elements combined with co-opted and newly evolved developmental elements.

  6. Facultative parthenogenesis discovered in wild vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Booth, Warren; Smith, Charles F.; Eskridge, Pamela H.; Hoss, Shannon K.; Mendelson, Joseph R.; Schuett, Gordon W.

    2012-01-01

    Facultative parthenogenesis (FP)—asexual reproduction by bisexual species—has been documented in a variety of multi-cellular organisms but only recently in snakes, varanid lizards, birds and sharks. Unlike the approximately 80 taxa of unisexual reptiles, amphibians and fishes that exist in nature, FP has yet to be documented in the wild. Based on captive documentation, it appears that FP is widespread in squamate reptiles (snakes, lizards and amphisbaenians), and its occurrence in nature seems inevitable, yet the task of detecting FP in wild individuals has been deemed formidable. Here we show, using microsatellite DNA genotyping and litter characteristics, the first cases of FP in wild-collected pregnant females and their offspring of two closely related species of North American pitviper snakes—the copperhead (Agkistrodon contortrix) and cottonmouth (Agkistrodon piscivorus). Our findings support the view that non-hybrid origins of parthenogenesis, such as FP, are more common in squamates than previously thought. With this confirmation, FP can no longer be viewed as a rare curiosity outside the mainstream of vertebrate evolution. Future research on FP in squamate reptiles related to proximate control of induction, reproductive competence of parthenogens and population genetics modelling is warranted. PMID:22977071

  7. Evolution of the Vertebrate Resistin Gene Family

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Qingda; Tan, Huanran; Irwin, David M.

    2015-01-01

    Resistin (encoded by Retn) was previously identified in rodents as a hormone associated with diabetes; however human resistin is instead linked to inflammation. Resistin is a member of a small gene family that includes the resistin-like peptides (encoded by Retnl genes) in mammals. Genomic searches of available genome sequences of diverse vertebrates and phylogenetic analyses were conducted to determine the size and origin of the resistin-like gene family. Genes encoding peptides similar to resistin were found in Mammalia, Sauria, Amphibia, and Actinistia (coelacanth, a lobe-finned fish), but not in Aves or fish from Actinopterygii, Chondrichthyes, or Agnatha. Retnl originated by duplication and transposition from Retn on the early mammalian lineage after divergence of the platypus, but before the placental and marsupial mammal divergence. The resistin-like gene family illustrates an instance where the locus of origin of duplicated genes can be identified, with Retn continuing to reside at this location. Mammalian species typically have a single copy Retn gene, but are much more variable in their numbers of Retnl genes, ranging from 0 to 9. Since Retn is located at the locus of origin, thus likely retained the ancestral expression pattern, largely maintained its copy number, and did not display accelerated evolution, we suggest that it is more likely to have maintained an ancestral function, while Retnl, which transposed to a new location, displays accelerated evolution, and shows greater variability in gene number, including gene loss, likely evolved new, but potentially lineage-specific, functions. PMID:26076481

  8. Evolution of colour vision in vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Bowmaker, J K

    1998-01-01

    The expression of five major families of visual pigments occurred early in vertebrae evolution, probably about 350-400 million years ago, before the separation of the major vertebrate classes. Phylogenetic analysis of opsin gene sequences suggests that the ancestral pigments were cone pigments, with rod pigments evolving last. Modern teleosts, reptiles and birds have genera that possess rods and four spectral classes of cone each representing one of the five visual pigment families. The complement of four spectrally distinct cone classes endows these species with the potential for tetrachromatic colour vision. In contrast, probably because of their nocturnal ancestry, mammals have rod-dominated retinas with colour vision reduced to a basic dichromatic system subserved by only two spectral classes of cone. It is only within primates, about 35 millions years ago, that mammals 're-evolved' a higher level of colour vision: trichromacy. This was achieved by a gene duplication within the longer-wave cone class to produce two spectrally distinct members of the same visual pigment family which, in conjunction with a short-wavelength pigment, provide the three spectral classes of cone necessary to subserve trichromacy.

  9. Molecular evolution of vertebrate visual pigments.

    PubMed

    Yokoyama, S

    2000-07-01

    Dramatic improvement of our understanding of the genetic basis of vision was brought by the molecular characterization of the bovine rhodopsin gene and the human rhodopsin and color opsin genes (Nathans and Hogness, 1983; Nathans et al., 1984, 1986a,b). The availability of cDNA clones from these studies has facilitated the isolation of retinal and nonretinal opsin genes and cDNA clones from a large variety of species. Today, the number of genomic and cDNA clones of opsin genes isolated from different vertebrate species exceeds 100 and is increasing rapidly. The opsin gene sequences reveal the importance of the origin and differentiation of various opsins and visual pigments. To understand the molecular genetic basis of spectral tuning of visual pigments, it is essential to establish correlations between a series of the sequences of visual pigments and their lambda(max) values. The potentially important amino acid changes identified in this way have to be tested whether they are in fact responsible for the lambda(max)-shifts using site-directed mutagenesis and cultured cells. A major goal of molecular evolutionary genetics is to understand the molecular mechanisms involved in functional adaptations of organisms to different environments, including the mechanisms of the regulation of the spectral absorption. Therefore, both molecular evolutionary analyses of visual pigments and vision science have an important common goal.

  10. Vertebral heart scores in eight dog breeds.

    PubMed

    Jepsen-Grant, K; Pollard, R E; Johnson, L R

    2013-01-01

    The vertebral heart score (VHS) measurement is commonly used to provide a more objective measurement of cardiomegaly in canines. However, several studies have shown significant breed variations from the value previously established by Buchanan and Bücheler (9.7 ± 0.5). This study describes VHS measurements in Pug, Pomeranian, Yorkshire Terrier, Dachshund, Bulldog, Shih Tzu, Lhasa Apso, and Boston Terrier dog breeds. Dogs with two or three view thoracic radiographs, no subjective radiographic evidence of cardiomegaly, and no physical examination findings of heart murmurs or gallop rhythms were included in the study. The Pug, Pomeranian, Bulldog, and Boston Terrier groups were found to have a VHS significantly greater than 9.7 ± 0.5 (P < 0.00001, P = 0.0014, P < 0.0001, P < 0.00001, respectively). Body condition score (BCS) was found to have a significant effect on the VHS of Lhasa Apso group. Anomalous vertebrae in the thoracic column were associated with a significant increase in VHS of the Bulldog (P = 0.028) and Boston Terrier (P = 0.0004) groups. Thoracic depth to width ratio did not have a significant effect on VHS.

  11. New insights into vertebrate skin regeneration.

    PubMed

    Seifert, Ashley W; Maden, Malcolm

    2014-01-01

    Regeneration biology has experienced a renaissance as clinicians, scientists, and engineers have combined forces to drive the field of regenerative medicine. Studies investigating the mechanisms that regulate wound healing in adult mammals have led to a good understanding of the stereotypical processes that lead to scarring. Despite comparative studies of fetal wound healing in which no scar is produced, the fact remains that insights from this work have failed to produce therapies that can regenerate adult human skin. In this review, we analyze past and contemporary accounts of wound healing in a variety of vertebrates, namely, fish, amphibians, and mammals, in order to demonstrate how examples of skin regeneration in adult organisms can impact traditional wound-healing research. When considered together, these studies suggest that inflammation and reepithelialization are necessary events preceding both scarring and regeneration. However, the extent to which these processes may direct one outcome over another is likely weaker than currently accepted. In contrast, the extent to which newly deposited extracellular matrix in the wound bed can be remodeled into new skin, and the intrinsic ability of new epidermis to regenerate appendages, appears to underlie the divergence between scar-free healing and the persistence of a scar. We discuss several ideas that may offer areas of overlap between researchers using these different model organisms and which may be of benefit to the ultimate goal of scar-free human wound healing. PMID:24725426

  12. Evolution of the Vertebrate Resistin Gene Family.

    PubMed

    Hu, Qingda; Tan, Huanran; Irwin, David M

    2015-01-01

    Resistin (encoded by Retn) was previously identified in rodents as a hormone associated with diabetes; however human resistin is instead linked to inflammation. Resistin is a member of a small gene family that includes the resistin-like peptides (encoded by Retnl genes) in mammals. Genomic searches of available genome sequences of diverse vertebrates and phylogenetic analyses were conducted to determine the size and origin of the resistin-like gene family. Genes encoding peptides similar to resistin were found in Mammalia, Sauria, Amphibia, and Actinistia (coelacanth, a lobe-finned fish), but not in Aves or fish from Actinopterygii, Chondrichthyes, or Agnatha. Retnl originated by duplication and transposition from Retn on the early mammalian lineage after divergence of the platypus, but before the placental and marsupial mammal divergence. The resistin-like gene family illustrates an instance where the locus of origin of duplicated genes can be identified, with Retn continuing to reside at this location. Mammalian species typically have a single copy Retn gene, but are much more variable in their numbers of Retnl genes, ranging from 0 to 9. Since Retn is located at the locus of origin, thus likely retained the ancestral expression pattern, largely maintained its copy number, and did not display accelerated evolution, we suggest that it is more likely to have maintained an ancestral function, while Retnl, which transposed to a new location, displays accelerated evolution, and shows greater variability in gene number, including gene loss, likely evolved new, but potentially lineage-specific, functions. PMID:26076481

  13. Facultative parthenogenesis discovered in wild vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Booth, Warren; Smith, Charles F; Eskridge, Pamela H; Hoss, Shannon K; Mendelson, Joseph R; Schuett, Gordon W

    2012-12-23

    Facultative parthenogenesis (FP)-asexual reproduction by bisexual species-has been documented in a variety of multi-cellular organisms but only recently in snakes, varanid lizards, birds and sharks. Unlike the approximately 80 taxa of unisexual reptiles, amphibians and fishes that exist in nature, FP has yet to be documented in the wild. Based on captive documentation, it appears that FP is widespread in squamate reptiles (snakes, lizards and amphisbaenians), and its occurrence in nature seems inevitable, yet the task of detecting FP in wild individuals has been deemed formidable. Here we show, using microsatellite DNA genotyping and litter characteristics, the first cases of FP in wild-collected pregnant females and their offspring of two closely related species of North American pitviper snakes-the copperhead (Agkistrodon contortrix) and cottonmouth (Agkistrodon piscivorus). Our findings support the view that non-hybrid origins of parthenogenesis, such as FP, are more common in squamates than previously thought. With this confirmation, FP can no longer be viewed as a rare curiosity outside the mainstream of vertebrate evolution. Future research on FP in squamate reptiles related to proximate control of induction, reproductive competence of parthenogens and population genetics modelling is warranted. PMID:22977071

  14. Microtubules, polarity and vertebrate neural tube morphogenesis.

    PubMed

    Cearns, Michael D; Escuin, Sarah; Alexandre, Paula; Greene, Nicholas D E; Copp, Andrew J

    2016-07-01

    Microtubules (MTs) are key cellular components, long known to participate in morphogenetic events that shape the developing embryo. However, the links between the cellular functions of MTs, their effects on cell shape and polarity, and their role in large-scale morphogenesis remain poorly understood. Here, these relationships were examined with respect to two strategies for generating the vertebrate neural tube: bending and closure of the mammalian neural plate; and cavitation of the teleost neural rod. The latter process has been compared with 'secondary' neurulation that generates the caudal spinal cord in mammals. MTs align along the apico-basal axis of the mammalian neuroepithelium early in neural tube closure, participating functionally in interkinetic nuclear migration, which indirectly impacts on cell shape. Whether MTs play other functional roles in mammalian neurulation remains unclear. In the zebrafish, MTs are important for defining the neural rod midline prior to its cavitation, both by localizing apical proteins at the tissue midline and by orienting cell division through a mirror-symmetric MT apparatus that helps to further define the medial localization of apical polarity proteins. Par proteins have been implicated in centrosome positioning in neuroepithelia as well as in the control of polarized morphogenetic movements in the neural rod. Understanding of MT functions during early nervous system development has so far been limited, partly by techniques that fail to distinguish 'cause' from 'effect'. Future developments will likely rely on novel ways to selectively impair MT function in order to investigate the roles they play.

  15. Gut Melatonin in Vertebrates: Chronobiology and Physiology

    PubMed Central

    Mukherjee, Sourav; Maitra, Saumen Kumar

    2015-01-01

    Melatonin, following discovery in the bovine pineal gland, has been detected in several extra-pineal sources including gastrointestinal tract or gut. Arylalkylamine N-acetyltransferase (AANAT) is the key regulator of its biosynthesis. Melatonin in pineal is rhythmically produced with a nocturnal peak in synchronization with environmental light–dark cycle. A recent study on carp reported first that melatonin levels and intensity of a ~23 kDa AANAT protein in each gut segment also exhibit significant daily variations but, unlike pineal, show a peak at midday in all seasons. Extensive experimental studies ruled out direct role of light–dark conditions in determining temporal pattern of gut melatoninergic system in carp, and opened up possible role of environmental non-photic cue(s) as its synchronizer. Based on mammalian findings, physiological significance of gut-derived melatonin also appears unique because its actions at local levels sharing paracrine and/or autocrine functions have been emphasized. The purpose of this mini review is to summarize the existing data on the chronobiology and physiology of gut melatonin and to emphasize their relation with the same hormone derived in the pineal in vertebrates including fish. PMID:26257705

  16. Earth orbital variations and vertebrate bioevolution

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mclean, Dewey M.

    1988-01-01

    Cause of the Pleistocene-Holocene transition mammalian extinctions at the end of the last age is the subject of debate between those advocating human predation and climate change. Identification of an ambient air temperature (AAT)-uterine blood flow (UBF) coupling phenomenon supports climate change as a factor in the extinctions, and couples the extinctions to earth orbital variations that drive ice age climatology. The AAT-UBF phenomenon couples mammalian bioevolution directly to climate change via effects of environmental heat upon blood flow to the female uterus and damage to developing embryos. Extinctions were in progress during climatic warming before the Younger Dryas event, and after, at times when the AAT-UBF couple would have been operative; however, impact of a sudden short-term cooling on mammals in the process of adapting to smaller size and relatively larger S/V would have been severe. Variations in earth's orbit, and orbital forcing of atmospheric CO2 concentrations, were causes of the succession of Pleistocene ice ages. Coincidence of mammalian extinctions with terminations of the more intense cold stages links mammalian bioevolution to variations in earth's orbit. Earth orbital variations are a driving source of vertebrate bioevolution.

  17. Distal Embolization After Stenting of the Vertebral Artery: Diffusion-Weighted Magnetic Resonance Imaging Findings

    SciTech Connect

    Canyigit, Murat; Arat, Anil Cil, Barbaros E.; Turkbey, Baris; Saatci, Isil; Cekirge, Saruhan; Balkanci, Ferhun

    2007-04-15

    Purpose. We retrospectively evaluated our experience with stenting of the vertebral artery in an effort to determine the risk of distal embolization associated with the procedure. Methods. Between June 2000 and May 2005, 35 patients with 38 stenting procedures for atherosclerotic disease of the vertebral origin in our institution were identified. The average age of the patients was 60.3 years (range 32-76 years). Sixteen of these patients (with 18 stents) had MR imaging of the brain with diffusion-weighted imaging and an apparent diffusion coefficient map within 2 days before and after procedure. Results. On seven of the 16 postprocedural diffusion-weighted MR images, a total of 57 new hyperintensities were visible. All these lesions were focal in nature. One patient demonstrated a new diffusion-weighted imaging abnormality in the anterior circulation without MR evidence of posterior circulation ischemia. Six of 16 patients had a total of 25 new lesions in the vertebrobasilar circulation in postprocedural diffusion-weighted MR images. One patient in this group was excluded from the final analysis because the procedure was complicated by basilar rupture during tandem stent deployment in the basilar artery. Hence, new diffusion-weighted imaging abnormalities were noted in the vertebrobasilar territory in 5 of 15 patients after 17 stenting procedures, giving a 29% rate of diffusion-weighted imaging abnormalities per procedure. No patient with bilateral stenting had new diffusion-weighted imaging abnormalities. Conclusion. Stenting of stenoses of the vertebral artery origin may be associated with a significant risk of asymptomatic distal embolization. Angiography, placement of the guiding catheter, inflation of the stent balloon, and crossing the lesion with guidewires or balloon catheters may potentially cause distal embolization. Further studies to evaluate measures to increase the safety of vertebral artery stenting, such as the use of distal protection devices or

  18. Extraordinary diversity of chemosensory receptor gene repertoires among vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Shi, P; Zhang, J

    2009-01-01

    Chemosensation (smell and taste) is important to the survival and reproduction of vertebrates and is mediated by specific bindings of odorants, pheromones, and tastants by chemoreceptors that are encoded by several large gene families. This review summarizes recent comparative genomic and evolutionary studies of vertebrate chemoreceptor genes. It focuses on the remarkable diversity of chemoreceptor gene repertoires in terms of gene number and gene sequence across vertebrates and the evolutionary mechanisms that are responsible for generating this diversity. We argue that the great among-species variation of chemoreceptor gene repertoires is a result of adaptations of individual species to their environments and diets. PMID:19145414

  19. Trunk Muscle Activity Is Modified in Osteoporotic Vertebral Fracture and Thoracic Kyphosis with Potential Consequences for Vertebral Health

    PubMed Central

    Greig, Alison M.; Briggs, Andrew M.; Bennell, Kim L.; Hodges, Paul W.

    2014-01-01

    This study explored inter-relationships between vertebral fracture, thoracic kyphosis and trunk muscle control in elderly people with osteoporosis. Osteoporotic vertebral fractures are associated with increased risk of further vertebral fractures; but underlying mechanisms remain unclear. Several factors may explain this association, including changes in postural alignment (thoracic kyphosis) and altered trunk muscle contraction patterns. Both factors may increase risk of further fracture because of increased vertebral loading and impaired balance, which may increase falls risk. This study compared postural adjustments in 24 individuals with osteoporosis with and without vertebral fracture and with varying degrees of thoracic kyphosis. Trunk muscle electromyographic activity (EMG) associated with voluntary arm movements was recorded and compared between individuals with and without vertebral fracture, and between those with low and high thoracic kyphosis. Overall, elderly participants in the study demonstrated co-contraction of the trunk flexor and extensor muscles during forwards arm movements, but those with vertebral fractures demonstrated a more pronounced co-contraction than those without fracture. Individuals with high thoracic kyphosis demonstrated more pronounced alternating flexor and extensor EMG bursts than those with less kyphosis. Co-contraction of trunk flexor and extensor muscles in older individuals contrasts the alternating bursts of antagonist muscle activity in previous studies of young individuals. This may have several consequences, including altered balance efficacy and the potential for increased compressive loads through the spine. Both of these outcomes may have consequences in a population with fragile vertebrae who are susceptible to fracture. PMID:25285908

  20. Decay of vertebrate characters in hagfish and lamprey (Cyclostomata) and the implications for the vertebrate fossil record.

    PubMed

    Sansom, Robert S; Gabbott, Sarah E; Purnell, Mark A

    2011-04-22

    The timing and sequence of events underlying the origin and early evolution of vertebrates remains poorly understood. The palaeontological evidence should shed light on these issues, but difficulties in interpretation of the non-biomineralized fossil record make this problematic. Here we present an experimental analysis of decay of vertebrate characters based on the extant jawless vertebrates (Lampetra and Myxine). This provides a framework for the interpretation of the anatomy of soft-bodied fossil vertebrates and putative cyclostomes, and a context for reading the fossil record of non-biomineralized vertebrate characters. Decay results in transformation and non-random loss of characters. In both lamprey and hagfish, different types of cartilage decay at different rates, resulting in taphonomic bias towards loss of 'soft' cartilages containing vertebrate-specific Col2α1 extracellular matrix proteins; phylogenetically informative soft-tissue characters decay before more plesiomorphic characters. As such, synapomorphic decay bias, previously recognized in early chordates, is more pervasive, and needs to be taken into account when interpreting the anatomy of any non-biomineralized fossil vertebrate, such as Haikouichthys, Mayomyzon and Hardistiella.

  1. Treatment of Ruptured Vertebral Artery Dissecting Aneurysms

    PubMed Central

    Hamasaki, Osamu; Ikawa, Fusao; Hidaka, Toshikazu; Kurokawa, Yasuharu; Yonezawa, Ushio

    2014-01-01

    Summary We evaluated the outcomes of endovascular or surgical treatment of ruptured vertebral artery dissecting aneurysms (VADAs), and investigated the relations between treatment complications and the development and location of the posterior inferior cerebellar artery (PICA). We treated 14 patients (12 men, two women; mean age, 56.2 years) with ruptured VADAs between March 1999 and June 2012 at our hospital. Six and eight patients had Hunt and Hess grades 1-3 and 4-5, respectively. Twelve patients underwent internal endovascular trapping, one underwent proximal endovascular occlusion alone, and one underwent proximal endovascular occlusion in the acute stage and occipital artery (OA)-PICA anastomosis and surgical trapping in the chronic stage. The types of VADA based on their location relative to the ipsilateral PICA were distal, PICA-involved, and non-PICA in nine, two, and three patients, respectively. The types of PICA based on their development and location were bilateral anterior inferior cerebellar artery (AICA)-PICA, ipsilateral AICA-PICA, extradural, and intradural type in one, two, two, and nine patients, respectively. Two patients with high anatomical risk developed medullary infarction, but their midterm outcomes were better than in previous reports. The modified Rankin scale indicated grades 0-2, 3-5, and 6 in eight, three, and three patients, respectively. A good outcome is often obtained in the treatment of ruptured VADA using internal endovascular trapping, except in the PICA-involved type, even with high-grade subarachnoid hemorrhage. Treatment of the PICA-involved type is controversial. The anatomical location and development of PICA may be predicted by complications with postoperative medullary infarction. PMID:24976093

  2. The 'Tully monster' is a vertebrate.

    PubMed

    McCoy, Victoria E; Saupe, Erin E; Lamsdell, James C; Tarhan, Lidya G; McMahon, Sean; Lidgard, Scott; Mayer, Paul; Whalen, Christopher D; Soriano, Carmen; Finney, Lydia; Vogt, Stefan; Clark, Elizabeth G; Anderson, Ross P; Petermann, Holger; Locatelli, Emma R; Briggs, Derek E G

    2016-04-28

    Problematic fossils, extinct taxa of enigmatic morphology that cannot be assigned to a known major group, were once a major issue in palaeontology. A long-favoured solution to the 'problem of the problematica', particularly the 'weird wonders' of the Cambrian Burgess Shale, was to consider them representatives of extinct phyla. A combination of new evidence and modern approaches to phylogenetic analysis has now resolved the affinities of most of these forms. Perhaps the most notable exception is Tullimonstrum gregarium, popularly known as the Tully monster, a large soft-bodied organism from the late Carboniferous Mazon Creek biota (approximately 309-307 million years ago) of Illinois, USA, which was designated the official state fossil of Illinois in 1989. Its phylogenetic position has remained uncertain and it has been compared with nemerteans, polychaetes, gastropods, conodonts, and the stem arthropod Opabinia. Here we review the morphology of Tullimonstrum based on an analysis of more than 1,200 specimens. We find that the anterior proboscis ends in a buccal apparatus containing teeth, the eyes project laterally on a long rigid bar, and the elongate segmented body bears a caudal fin with dorsal and ventral lobes. We describe new evidence for a notochord, cartilaginous arcualia, gill pouches, articulations within the proboscis, and multiple tooth rows adjacent to the mouth. This combination of characters, supported by phylogenetic analysis, identifies Tullimonstrum as a vertebrate, and places it on the stem lineage to lampreys (Petromyzontida). In addition to increasing the known morphological disparity of extinct lampreys, a chordate affinity for T. gregarium resolves the nature of a soft-bodied fossil which has been debated for more than 50 years. PMID:26982721

  3. The 'Tully monster' is a vertebrate.

    PubMed

    McCoy, Victoria E; Saupe, Erin E; Lamsdell, James C; Tarhan, Lidya G; McMahon, Sean; Lidgard, Scott; Mayer, Paul; Whalen, Christopher D; Soriano, Carmen; Finney, Lydia; Vogt, Stefan; Clark, Elizabeth G; Anderson, Ross P; Petermann, Holger; Locatelli, Emma R; Briggs, Derek E G

    2016-04-28

    Problematic fossils, extinct taxa of enigmatic morphology that cannot be assigned to a known major group, were once a major issue in palaeontology. A long-favoured solution to the 'problem of the problematica', particularly the 'weird wonders' of the Cambrian Burgess Shale, was to consider them representatives of extinct phyla. A combination of new evidence and modern approaches to phylogenetic analysis has now resolved the affinities of most of these forms. Perhaps the most notable exception is Tullimonstrum gregarium, popularly known as the Tully monster, a large soft-bodied organism from the late Carboniferous Mazon Creek biota (approximately 309-307 million years ago) of Illinois, USA, which was designated the official state fossil of Illinois in 1989. Its phylogenetic position has remained uncertain and it has been compared with nemerteans, polychaetes, gastropods, conodonts, and the stem arthropod Opabinia. Here we review the morphology of Tullimonstrum based on an analysis of more than 1,200 specimens. We find that the anterior proboscis ends in a buccal apparatus containing teeth, the eyes project laterally on a long rigid bar, and the elongate segmented body bears a caudal fin with dorsal and ventral lobes. We describe new evidence for a notochord, cartilaginous arcualia, gill pouches, articulations within the proboscis, and multiple tooth rows adjacent to the mouth. This combination of characters, supported by phylogenetic analysis, identifies Tullimonstrum as a vertebrate, and places it on the stem lineage to lampreys (Petromyzontida). In addition to increasing the known morphological disparity of extinct lampreys, a chordate affinity for T. gregarium resolves the nature of a soft-bodied fossil which has been debated for more than 50 years.

  4. Experiment K307: Vertebral body strength of rat spinal columns

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kazarian, L. E.

    1981-01-01

    The effects of space flight on vertebral body bone strength excised were investigated. Comparative biomechanical investigations of vertebral body strength for flight, synchronous, and vivarium rats following spacecraft recovery (R+0), at R+6 and R+29 days post flight recovery are presented. Statistical analyses are presented for the mechanical properties of stiffness, ultimate load, displacement to ultimate load, and energy to ultimate load. At R+0 all of the above properties show that the vertebral body exhibits an increasing susceptibility to fracture. The reduction of bone strength is inhomogeneous and dependent on vertebral level. The R+6 recovery data was inconclusive since it varied above and below the R+0 data. At R+29 ultimate load values showed a statistically significant increase in bone strength approaching that of the vivarium or control group.

  5. A common fold mediates vertebrate defense and bacterial attack.

    PubMed

    Rosado, Carlos J; Buckle, Ashley M; Law, Ruby H P; Butcher, Rebecca E; Kan, Wan-Ting; Bird, Catherina H; Ung, Kheng; Browne, Kylie A; Baran, Katherine; Bashtannyk-Puhalovich, Tanya A; Faux, Noel G; Wong, Wilson; Porter, Corrine J; Pike, Robert N; Ellisdon, Andrew M; Pearce, Mary C; Bottomley, Stephen P; Emsley, Jonas; Smith, A Ian; Rossjohn, Jamie; Hartland, Elizabeth L; Voskoboinik, Ilia; Trapani, Joseph A; Bird, Phillip I; Dunstone, Michelle A; Whisstock, James C

    2007-09-14

    Proteins containing membrane attack complex/perforin (MACPF) domains play important roles in vertebrate immunity, embryonic development, and neural-cell migration. In vertebrates, the ninth component of complement and perforin form oligomeric pores that lyse bacteria and kill virus-infected cells, respectively. However, the mechanism of MACPF function is unknown. We determined the crystal structure of a bacterial MACPF protein, Plu-MACPF from Photorhabdus luminescens, to 2.0 angstrom resolution. The MACPF domain reveals structural similarity with poreforming cholesterol-dependent cytolysins (CDCs) from Gram-positive bacteria. This suggests that lytic MACPF proteins may use a CDC-like mechanism to form pores and disrupt cell membranes. Sequence similarity between bacterial and vertebrate MACPF domains suggests that the fold of the CDCs, a family of proteins important for bacterial pathogenesis, is probably used by vertebrates for defense against infection.

  6. Case Study: Giant Cell Arteritis with Vertebral Artery Stenosis.

    PubMed

    Daniel Chomlak, R; Ghazanfari, Farshad; Datta, Mineesh

    2016-01-01

    In giant cell arteritis (GCA), involvement of the vertebral arteries is rare with reported rates of 3%-4% for ischemic events secondary to vertebral artery stenosis or occlusion for those patients with GCA. This case study describes a patient who initially presented with acute onset of vertigo but was also found to have transient, side-alternating upper limb neurological findings. While initial imaging showed no vascular abnormalities, it was not until GCA was eventually confirmed with a temporal artery biopsy that the initial scans were shown to have bilateral narrowing of the vertebral arteries. While rare, vertebral artery involvement is an important complication to consider in the setting of GCA due to the high rate of associated mortality, despite immunosuppressive therapy. PMID:27279753

  7. Do Vertebrate Gut Metagenomes Confer Rapid Ecological Adaptation?

    PubMed

    Alberdi, Antton; Aizpurua, Ostaizka; Bohmann, Kristine; Zepeda-Mendoza, Marie Lisandra; Gilbert, M Thomas P

    2016-09-01

    During times of rapid environmental change, survival of most vertebrate populations depends on their phenomic plasticity. Although differential gene-expression and post-transcriptional processes of the host genome receive focus as the main molecular mechanisms, growing evidence points to the gut microbiota as a key driver defining hosts' phenotypes. We propose that the plasticity of the gut microbiota might be an essential factor determining phenomic plasticity of vertebrates, and that it might play a pivotal role when vertebrates acclimate and adapt to fast environmental variation. We contemplate some key questions and suggest methodological approaches and experimental designs that can be used to evaluate whether gut microorganisms provide a boost of plasticity to vertebrates' phenomes, thereby increasing their acclimation and adaptation capacity.

  8. Understanding Balloon Kyphoplasty and Myeloma-Induced Vertebral Compression Fractures

    MedlinePlus

    ... back and the ribs. More often than not, back pain and generalized weakness are what bring many undiagnosed ... the doctor in the first place. Sudden severe back pain can indicate that the vertebral body *Words appearing ...

  9. [About evolution of sleep-wakefulness cycle in vertebrates].

    PubMed

    Oganesian, G A; Aristakesian, E A; Vataev, S I

    2012-10-01

    Data about behavioral, somato-vegetative and neurophysiological parameters of sleep and wakefulness in insects, cold- and warm-blooded vertebrates are provided. Hypotheses existing now about evolutionary formation of separate sleep phases and stages in vertebrates are considered. In the review are shown the data about correlations of quantitative characteristics of sleep and wake in some mammals with basic metabolic rate, lifestyle, environmental habits. The original experimental results at formation of neurophysiological characteristics of sleep and wake in vertebrates, phylogeny and in ontogeny of mature and immature mammals are provided in detail. On the basis of own concepts about evolutionary development of sleep-wakefulness cycle in vertebrates the interactions of telencephalic, diencephalic and rhombencepalic parts of brain in the processes of cycle wakefulness cycle integration are discussed. PMID:23401913

  10. Explaining large-scale patterns of vertebrate diversity.

    PubMed

    Wiens, John J

    2015-07-01

    The major clades of vertebrates differ dramatically in their current species richness, from 2 to more than 32,000 species each, but the causes of this variation remain poorly understood. For example, a previous study noted that vertebrate clades differ in their diversification rates, but did not explain why they differ. Using a time-calibrated phylogeny and phylogenetic comparative methods, I show that most variation in diversification rates among 12 major vertebrate clades has a simple ecological explanation: predominantly terrestrial clades (i.e. birds, mammals, and lizards and snakes) have higher net diversification rates than predominantly aquatic clades (i.e. amphibians, crocodilians, turtles and all fish clades). These differences in diversification rates are then strongly related to patterns of species richness. Habitat may be more important than other potential explanations for richness patterns in vertebrates (such as climate and metabolic rates) and may also help explain patterns of species richness in many other groups of organisms. PMID:26202428

  11. A Common Fold Mediates Vertebrate Defense and Bacterial Attack

    SciTech Connect

    Rosado, Carlos J.; Buckle, Ashley M.; Law, Ruby H.P.; Butcher, Rebecca E.; Kan, Wan-Ting; Bird, Catherina H.; Ung, Kheng; Browne, Kylie A.; Baran, Katherine; Bashtannyk-Puhalovich, Tanya A.; Faux, Noel G.; Wong, Wilson; Porter, Corrine J.; Pike, Robert N.; Ellisdon, Andrew M.; Pearce, Mary C.; Bottomley, Stephen P.; Emsley, Jonas; Smith, A. Ian; Rossjohn, Jamie; Hartland, Elizabeth L.; Voskoboinik, Ilia; Trapani, Joseph A.; Bird, Phillip I.; Dunstone, Michelle A.; Whisstock, James C.

    2008-10-02

    Proteins containing membrane attack complex/perforin (MACPF) domains play important roles in vertebrate immunity, embryonic development, and neural-cell migration. In vertebrates, the ninth component of complement and perforin form oligomeric pores that lyse bacteria and kill virus-infected cells, respectively. However, the mechanism of MACPF function is unknown. We determined the crystal structure of a bacterial MACPF protein, Plu-MACPF from Photorhabdus luminescens, to 2.0 angstrom resolution. The MACPF domain reveals structural similarity with poreforming cholesterol-dependent cytolysins (CDCs) from Gram-positive bacteria. This suggests that lytic MACPF proteins may use a CDC-like mechanism to form pores and disrupt cell membranes. Sequence similarity between bacterial and vertebrate MACPF domains suggests that the fold of the CDCs, a family of proteins important for bacterial pathogenesis, is probably used by vertebrates for defense against infection.

  12. Explaining large-scale patterns of vertebrate diversity

    PubMed Central

    Wiens, John J.

    2015-01-01

    The major clades of vertebrates differ dramatically in their current species richness, from 2 to more than 32 000 species each, but the causes of this variation remain poorly understood. For example, a previous study noted that vertebrate clades differ in their diversification rates, but did not explain why they differ. Using a time-calibrated phylogeny and phylogenetic comparative methods, I show that most variation in diversification rates among 12 major vertebrate clades has a simple ecological explanation: predominantly terrestrial clades (i.e. birds, mammals, and lizards and snakes) have higher net diversification rates than predominantly aquatic clades (i.e. amphibians, crocodilians, turtles and all fish clades). These differences in diversification rates are then strongly related to patterns of species richness. Habitat may be more important than other potential explanations for richness patterns in vertebrates (such as climate and metabolic rates) and may also help explain patterns of species richness in many other groups of organisms. PMID:26202428

  13. The evolutionary landscape of alternative splicing in vertebrate species.

    PubMed

    Barbosa-Morais, Nuno L; Irimia, Manuel; Pan, Qun; Xiong, Hui Y; Gueroussov, Serge; Lee, Leo J; Slobodeniuc, Valentina; Kutter, Claudia; Watt, Stephen; Colak, Recep; Kim, TaeHyung; Misquitta-Ali, Christine M; Wilson, Michael D; Kim, Philip M; Odom, Duncan T; Frey, Brendan J; Blencowe, Benjamin J

    2012-12-21

    How species with similar repertoires of protein-coding genes differ so markedly at the phenotypic level is poorly understood. By comparing organ transcriptomes from vertebrate species spanning ~350 million years of evolution, we observed significant differences in alternative splicing complexity between vertebrate lineages, with the highest complexity in primates. Within 6 million years, the splicing profiles of physiologically equivalent organs diverged such that they are more strongly related to the identity of a species than they are to organ type. Most vertebrate species-specific splicing patterns are cis-directed. However, a subset of pronounced splicing changes are predicted to remodel protein interactions involving trans-acting regulators. These events likely further contributed to the diversification of splicing and other transcriptomic changes that underlie phenotypic differences among vertebrate species. PMID:23258890

  14. Case Study: Giant Cell Arteritis with Vertebral Artery Stenosis

    PubMed Central

    Daniel Chomlak, R.; Ghazanfari, Farshad; Datta, Mineesh

    2016-01-01

    In giant cell arteritis (GCA), involvement of the vertebral arteries is rare with reported rates of 3%–4% for ischemic events secondary to vertebral artery stenosis or occlusion for those patients with GCA. This case study describes a patient who initially presented with acute onset of vertigo but was also found to have transient, side-alternating upper limb neurological findings. While initial imaging showed no vascular abnormalities, it was not until GCA was eventually confirmed with a temporal artery biopsy that the initial scans were shown to have bilateral narrowing of the vertebral arteries. While rare, vertebral artery involvement is an important complication to consider in the setting of GCA due to the high rate of associated mortality, despite immunosuppressive therapy. PMID:27279753

  15. Relevant signs of stable and unstable thoracolumbar vertebral column trauma

    SciTech Connect

    Gehweiler, J.A.; Daffner, R.H.; Osborne, R.L.

    1981-12-01

    One-hundred and seventeen patients with acute thoracolumbar vertebral column fracture or fracture-dislocations were analyzed and classified into stable (36%) and unstable (64%). Eight helpful roentgen signs were observed that may serve to direct attention to serious underlying, often occult, fractures and dislocations. The changes fall into four principal groups: abnormal soft tissues, abnormal vertebral alignment, abnormal joints, and widened vertebral canal. All stable and unstable lesions showed abnormal soft tissues, while 70% demonstrated kyphosis and/or scoliosis, and an abnormal adjacent intervertebral disk space. All unstable lesions showed one or more of the following signs: displaced vertebra, widened interspinous space, abnormal apophyseal joint(s), and widened vertebral canal.

  16. Duplications of hox gene clusters and the emergence of vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Soshnikova, Natalia; Dewaele, Romain; Janvier, Philippe; Krumlauf, Robb; Duboule, Denis

    2013-06-15

    The vertebrate body plan is characterized by an increased complexity relative to that of all other chordates and large-scale gene amplifications have been associated with key morphological innovations leading to their remarkable evolutionary success. Here, we use compound full Hox clusters deletions to investigate how Hox genes duplications may have contributed to the emergence of vertebrate-specific innovations. We show that the combined deletion of HoxA and HoxB leads to an atavistic heart phenotype, suggesting that the ancestral HoxA/B cluster was co-opted to help in diversifying the complex organ in vertebrates. Other phenotypic effects observed seem to illustrate the resurgence of ancestral (plesiomorphic) features. This indicates that the duplications of Hox clusters were associated with the recruitment or formation of novel cis-regulatory controls, which were key to the evolution of many vertebrate features and hence to the evolutionary radiation of this group.

  17. DESIGN PRINCIPLES OF INSECT AND VERTEBRATE VISUAL SYSTEMS

    PubMed Central

    Sanes, Joshua R.; Zipursky, S. Lawrence

    2010-01-01

    A century ago, Cajal noted striking similarities between the neural circuits that underlie vision in vertebrates and flies. Over the past few decades, structural and functional studies have provided strong support for Cajal’s view. In parallel, genetic studies have revealed some common molecular mechanisms controlling development of vertebrate and fly visual systems and suggested that they share a common evolutionary origin. Here, we review these shared features, focusing on the first several layers - retina, optic tectum (superior colliculus) and lateral geniculate nucleus in vertebrates, and retina, lamina and medulla in fly. We argue that vertebrate and fly visual circuits utilize common design principles, and that taking advantage of this phylogenetic conservation will speed progress in elucidating both functional strategies and developmental mechanisms, as has already occurred in other areas of neurobiology ranging from electrical signaling and synaptic plasticity to neurogenesis and axon guidance. PMID:20399726

  18. Do Vertebrate Gut Metagenomes Confer Rapid Ecological Adaptation?

    PubMed

    Alberdi, Antton; Aizpurua, Ostaizka; Bohmann, Kristine; Zepeda-Mendoza, Marie Lisandra; Gilbert, M Thomas P

    2016-09-01

    During times of rapid environmental change, survival of most vertebrate populations depends on their phenomic plasticity. Although differential gene-expression and post-transcriptional processes of the host genome receive focus as the main molecular mechanisms, growing evidence points to the gut microbiota as a key driver defining hosts' phenotypes. We propose that the plasticity of the gut microbiota might be an essential factor determining phenomic plasticity of vertebrates, and that it might play a pivotal role when vertebrates acclimate and adapt to fast environmental variation. We contemplate some key questions and suggest methodological approaches and experimental designs that can be used to evaluate whether gut microorganisms provide a boost of plasticity to vertebrates' phenomes, thereby increasing their acclimation and adaptation capacity. PMID:27453351

  19. [Complex forms of behavior in a series of vertebrates].

    PubMed

    Maliukova, I V

    1978-01-01

    Within evolutionary line of vertebrates, correlation between the degree of differentiation of the brain and peculiarities of the formation of complex behavioural acts may be observed. Gradual evolution in the organization of complex motor food-searching conditioned reflexes and the capacity to visual discrimination was revealed in phylogenetic line of vertebrates: elasmobranchs (rays and sharks), marine teleosts, reptiles (terrestrial tortoises), insectivores (hedgehogs), rodents (rats) and primates (lower monkeys).

  20. Vertebral Osteomyelitis Due to Granulicatella Adiacens, a Nutritionally Variant Streptococci

    PubMed Central

    York, Jonathan; Chapman, Jens

    2016-01-01

    Vertebral osteomyelitis is a common pathology affecting the spine. We present the case of a 46-year-old male who was diagnosed with progressive L2 vertebral osteomyelitis due to a rare pathogen, Granulicatella adiacens. Granulicatella adiacens is part of the normal body flora and is often difficult to culture on traditional mediums. The patient required a lateral corpectomy and posterior fixation for spinal stabilization and source control. PMID:27800289

  1. The sarcoplasmic reticulum and the evolution of the vertebrate heart.

    PubMed

    Shiels, Holly A; Galli, Gina L J

    2014-11-01

    The sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) is crucial for contraction and relaxation of the mammalian cardiomyocyte, but its role in other vertebrate classes is equivocal. Recent evidence suggests differences in SR function across species may have an underlying structural basis. Here, we discuss how SR recruitment relates to the structural organization of the cardiomyocyte to provide new insight into the evolution of cardiac design and function in vertebrates.

  2. Functionally conserved enhancers with divergent sequences in distant vertebrates

    SciTech Connect

    Yang, Song; Oksenberg, Nir; Takayama, Sachiko; Heo, Seok -Jin; Poliakov, Alexander; Ahituv, Nadav; Dubchak, Inna; Boffelli, Dario

    2015-10-30

    To examine the contributions of sequence and function conservation in the evolution of enhancers, we systematically identified enhancers whose sequences are not conserved among distant groups of vertebrate species, but have homologous function and are likely to be derived from a common ancestral sequence. In conclusion, our approach combined comparative genomics and epigenomics to identify potential enhancer sequences in the genomes of three groups of distantly related vertebrate species.

  3. Harnessing carbon payments to protect biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Venter, Oscar; Laurance, William F; Iwamura, Takuya; Wilson, Kerrie A; Fuller, Richard A; Possingham, Hugh P

    2009-12-01

    Initiatives to reduce carbon emissions from deforestation and degradation (REDD) are providing increasing incentives for forest protection. The collateral benefits for biodiversity depend on the extent to which emissions reductions and biodiversity conservation can be achieved in the same places. Globally, we demonstrate spatial trade-offs in allocating funds to protect forests for carbon and biodiversity and show that cost-effective spending for REDD would protect relatively few species of forest vertebrates. Because trade-offs are nonlinear, we discover that minor adjustments to the allocation of funds could double the biodiversity protected by REDD, while reducing carbon outcomes by only 4 to 8%.

  4. Ancient deuterostome origins of vertebrate brain signalling centres.

    PubMed

    Pani, Ariel M; Mullarkey, Erin E; Aronowicz, Jochanan; Assimacopoulos, Stavroula; Grove, Elizabeth A; Lowe, Christopher J

    2012-03-14

    Neuroectodermal signalling centres induce and pattern many novel vertebrate brain structures but are absent, or divergent, in invertebrate chordates. This has led to the idea that signalling-centre genetic programs were first assembled in stem vertebrates and potentially drove morphological innovations of the brain. However, this scenario presumes that extant cephalochordates accurately represent ancestral chordate characters, which has not been tested using close chordate outgroups. Here we report that genetic programs homologous to three vertebrate signalling centres-the anterior neural ridge, zona limitans intrathalamica and isthmic organizer-are present in the hemichordate Saccoglossus kowalevskii. Fgf8/17/18 (a single gene homologous to vertebrate Fgf8, Fgf17 and Fgf18), sfrp1/5, hh and wnt1 are expressed in vertebrate-like arrangements in hemichordate ectoderm, and homologous genetic mechanisms regulate ectodermal patterning in both animals. We propose that these genetic programs were components of an unexpectedly complex, ancient genetic regulatory scaffold for deuterostome body patterning that degenerated in amphioxus and ascidians, but was retained to pattern divergent structures in hemichordates and vertebrates.

  5. Automatic vertebral identification using surface-based registration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Herring, Jeannette L.; Dawant, Benoit M.

    2000-06-01

    This work introduces an enhancement to currently existing methods of intra-operative vertebral registration by allowing the portion of the spinal column surface that correctly matches a set of physical vertebral points to be automatically selected from several possible choices. Automatic selection is made possible by the shape variations that exist among lumbar vertebrae. In our experiments, we register vertebral points representing physical space to spinal column surfaces extracted from computed tomography images. The vertebral points are taken from the posterior elements of a single vertebra to represent the region of surgical interest. The surface is extracted using an improved version of the fully automatic marching cubes algorithm, which results in a triangulated surface that contains multiple vertebrae. We find the correct portion of the surface by registering the set of physical points to multiple surface areas, including all vertebral surfaces that potentially match the physical point set. We then compute the standard deviation of the surface error for the set of points registered to each vertebral surface that is a possible match, and the registration that corresponds to the lowest standard deviation designates the correct match. We have performed our current experiments on two plastic spine phantoms and one patient.

  6. A central role for the notochord in vertebral patterning.

    PubMed

    Fleming, Angeleen; Keynes, Roger; Tannahill, David

    2004-02-01

    The vertebrates are defined by their segmented vertebral column, and vertebral periodicity is thought to originate from embryonic segments, the somites. According to the widely accepted 'resegmentation' model, a single vertebra forms from the recombination of the anterior and posterior halves of two adjacent sclerotomes on both sides of the embryo. Although there is supporting evidence for this model in amniotes, it remains uncertain whether it applies to all vertebrates. To explore this, we have investigated vertebral patterning in the zebrafish. Surprisingly, we find that vertebral bodies (centra) arise by secretion of bone matrix from the notochord rather than somites; centra do not form via a cartilage intermediate stage, nor do they contain osteoblasts. Moreover, isolated, cultured notochords secrete bone matrix in vitro, and ablation of notochord cells at segmentally reiterated positions in vivo prevents the formation of centra. Analysis of fss mutant embryos, in which sclerotome segmentation is disrupted, shows that whereas neural arch segmentation is also disrupted, centrum development proceeds normally. These findings suggest that the notochord plays a key, perhaps ancient, role in the segmental patterning of vertebrae.

  7. Craniofacial development of hagfishes and the evolution of vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Oisi, Yasuhiro; Ota, Kinya G; Kuraku, Shigehiro; Fujimoto, Satoko; Kuratani, Shigeru

    2013-01-10

    Cyclostomes, the living jawless vertebrates including hagfishes and lampreys, represent the most basal lineage of vertebrates. Although the monophyly of cyclostomes has been supported by recent molecular analyses, the phenotypic traits of hagfishes, especially the lack of some vertebrate-defining features and the reported endodermal origin of the adenohypophysis, have been interpreted as hagfishes exhibiting a more ancestral state than those of all other vertebrates. Furthermore, the adult anatomy of hagfishes cannot be compared easily with that of lampreys. Here we describe the craniofacial development of a series of staged hagfish embryos, which shows that their adenohypophysis arises ectodermally, consistent with the molecular phylogenetic data. This finding also allowed us to identify a pan-cyclostome pattern, one not shared by jawed vertebrates. Comparative analyses indicated that many of the hagfish-specific traits can be explained by changes secondarily introduced into the hagfish lineage. We also propose a possibility that the pan-cyclostome pattern may reflect the ancestral programme for the craniofacial development of all living vertebrates.

  8. The pre-vertebrate origins of neurogenic placodes.

    PubMed

    Abitua, Philip Barron; Gainous, T Blair; Kaczmarczyk, Angela N; Winchell, Christopher J; Hudson, Clare; Kamata, Kaori; Nakagawa, Masashi; Tsuda, Motoyuki; Kusakabe, Takehiro G; Levine, Michael

    2015-08-27

    The sudden appearance of the neural crest and neurogenic placodes in early branching vertebrates has puzzled biologists for over a century. These embryonic tissues contribute to the development of the cranium and associated sensory organs, which were crucial for the evolution of the vertebrate "new head". A previous study suggests that rudimentary neural crest cells existed in ancestral chordates. However, the evolutionary origins of neurogenic placodes have remained obscure owing to a paucity of embryonic data from tunicates, the closest living relatives to those early vertebrates. Here we show that the tunicate Ciona intestinalis exhibits a proto-placodal ectoderm (PPE) that requires inhibition of bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) and expresses the key regulatory determinant Six1/2 and its co-factor Eya, a developmental process conserved across vertebrates. The Ciona PPE is shown to produce ciliated neurons that express genes for gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH), a G-protein-coupled receptor for relaxin-3 (RXFP3) and a functional cyclic nucleotide-gated channel (CNGA), which suggests dual chemosensory and neurosecretory activities. These observations provide evidence that Ciona has a neurogenic proto-placode, which forms neurons that appear to be related to those derived from the olfactory placode and hypothalamic neurons of vertebrates. We discuss the possibility that the PPE-derived GnRH neurons of Ciona resemble an ancestral cell type, a progenitor to the complex neuronal circuit that integrates sensory information and neuroendocrine functions in vertebrates. PMID:26258298

  9. Audiological findings in patients with oculo-auriculo-vertebral spectrum.

    PubMed

    Sleifer, Pricila; Gorsky, Natalya de Souza; Goetze, Thayse Bienert; Rosa, Rafael Fabiano Machado; Zen, Paulo Ricardo Gazzola

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Oculo-auriculo-vertebral spectrum, also referred to as Goldenhar syndrome, is a condition characterized by alterations involving the development of the structures of the first and second branchial arches. The abnormalities primarily affect the face, the eyes, the spine, and the ears, and the auricular abnormalities are associated with possible hearing loss. Objective To analyze the audiological findings of patients with oculo-auriculo-vertebral spectrum through liminal pure-tone audiometry and speech audiometry test. Methods Cross-sectional study conducted on 10 patients with oculo-auriculo-vertebral spectrum and clinical findings on at least two of the following areas: orocraniofacial, ocular, auricular, and vertebral. All patients underwent tonal and vocal hearing evaluations. Results Seven patients were male and three were female; all had ear abnormalities, and the right side was the most often affected. Conductive hearing loss was the most common (found in 10 ears), followed by sensorineural hearing loss (in five ears), with mixed hearing loss in only one ear. The impairment of the hearing loss ranged from mild to moderate, with one case of profound loss. Conclusions The results show a higher frequency of conductive hearing loss among individuals with the oculo-auriculo-vertebral spectrum phenotype, especially moderate loss affecting the right side. Furthermore, research in auditory thresholds in the oculo-auriculo-vertebral spectrum is important in speech therapy findings about the disease to facilitate early intervention for possible alterations. PMID:25992144

  10. The origin of conodonts and of vertebrate mineralized skeletons

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Murdock, Duncan J.E.; Dong, Xi-Ping; Repetski, John E.; Marone, Federica; Stampanoni, Marco; Donoghue, Philip C.J.

    2013-01-01

    Conodonts are an extinct group of jawless vertebrates whose tooth-like elements are the earliest instance of a mineralized skeleton in the vertebrate lineage, inspiring the ‘inside-out’ hypothesis that teeth evolved independently of the vertebrate dermal skeleton and before the origin of jaws. However, these propositions have been based on evidence from derived euconodonts. Here we test hypotheses of a paraconodont ancestry of euconodonts using synchrotron radiation X-ray tomographic microscopy to characterize and compare the microstructure of morphologically similar euconodont and paraconodont elements. Paraconodonts exhibit a range of grades of structural differentiation, including tissues and a pattern of growth common to euconodont basal bodies. The different grades of structural differentiation exhibited by paraconodonts demonstrate the stepwise acquisition of euconodont characters, resolving debate over the relationship between these two groups. By implication, the putative homology of euconodont crown tissue and vertebrate enamel must be rejected as these tissues have evolved independently and convergently. Thus, the precise ontogenetic, structural and topological similarities between conodont elements and vertebrate odontodes appear to be a remarkable instance of convergence. The last common ancestor of conodonts and jawed vertebrates probably lacked mineralized skeletal tissues. The hypothesis that teeth evolved before jaws and the inside-out hypothesis of dental evolution must be rejected; teeth seem to have evolved through the extension of odontogenic competence from the external dermis to internal epithelium soon after the origin of jaws.

  11. Facultative parthenogenesis in vertebrates: reproductive error or chance?

    PubMed

    Lampert, K P

    2008-01-01

    Parthenogenesis, the development of an embryo from a female gamete without any contribution of a male gamete, is very rare in vertebrates. Parthenogenetically reproducing species have, so far, only been found in the Squamate reptiles (lizards and snakes). Facultative parthenogenesis, switching between sexual and clonal reproduction, although quite common in invertebrates, e.g. Daphnia and aphids, seems to be even rarer in vertebrates. However, isolated cases of parthenogenetic development have been reported in all vertebrate groups. Facultative parthenogenesis in vertebrates has only been found in captive animals but might simply have been overlooked in natural populations. Even though its evolutionary impact is hard to determine and very likely varies depending on the ploidy restoration mechanisms and sex-determining mechanisms involved, facultative parthenogenesis is already discussed in conservation biology and medical research. To raise interest for facultative parthenogenesis especially in evolutionary biology, I summarize the current knowledge about facultative parthenogenesis in the different vertebrate groups, introduce mechanisms of diploid oocyte formation and discuss the genetic consequences and potential evolutionary impact of facultative parthenogenesis in vertebrates.

  12. Audiological Findings in Patients with Oculo-Auriculo-Vertebral Spectrum

    PubMed Central

    Sleifer, Pricila; Gorsky, Natalya de Souza; Goetze, Thayse Bienert; Rosa, Rafael Fabiano Machado; Zen, Paulo Ricardo Gazzola

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Oculo-auriculo-vertebral spectrum, also referred to as Goldenhar syndrome, is a condition characterized by alterations involving the development of the structures of the first and second branchial arches. The abnormalities primarily affect the face, the eyes, the spine, and the ears, and the auricular abnormalities are associated with possible hearing loss. Objective To analyze the audiological findings of patients with oculo-auriculo-vertebral spectrum through liminal pure-tone audiometry and speech audiometry test. Methods Cross-sectional study conducted on 10 patients with oculo-auriculo-vertebral spectrum and clinical findings on at least two of the following areas: orocraniofacial, ocular, auricular, and vertebral. All patients underwent tonal and vocal hearing evaluations. Results Seven patients were male and three were female; all had ear abnormalities, and the right side was the most often affected. Conductive hearing loss was the most common (found in 10 ears), followed by sensorineural hearing loss (in five ears), with mixed hearing loss in only one ear. The impairment of the hearing loss ranged from mild to moderate, with one case of profound loss. Conclusions The results show a higher frequency of conductive hearing loss among individuals with the oculo-auriculo-vertebral spectrum phenotype, especially moderate loss affecting the right side. Furthermore, research in auditory thresholds in the oculo-auriculo-vertebral spectrum is important in speech therapy findings about the disease to facilitate early intervention for possible alterations. PMID:25992144

  13. Bow hunter's syndrome secondary to bilateral dynamic vertebral artery compression.

    PubMed

    Healy, Andrew T; Lee, Bryan S; Walsh, Kevin; Bain, Mark D; Krishnaney, Ajit A

    2015-01-01

    Bow hunter's syndrome is a condition in which vertebrobasilar insufficiency is resultant from head rotation, clinically manifested by presyncopal sensation, syncope, dizziness, and nausea. It is usually diagnosed clinically, with supporting vascular imaging demonstrating an occluded or at the very least compromised unilateral vertebral artery, while the dominant vertebral artery remains patent in the neutral position. Dynamic imaging is utilized to confirm the rotational compression of the dominant vertebral artery. We present the rare case of a patient with typical Bow hunter's symptoms, bilaterally patent vertebral arteries on neutral imaging, and bilateral compromise with head rotation. Our patient underwent posterior decompression of the culprit atlanto-axial transverse foramen and subaxial cervical fusion, with resolution of his symptoms. Our patient exemplifies the possibility of bilateral dynamic vertebral artery occlusion. We show that Bow hunter's syndrome cannot be ruled out in the setting of bilaterally patent vertebral arteries on neutral imaging and that severe cervical spondylosis should impart further clinical suspicion of this unusual phenomenon. PMID:25070633

  14. Targeting global protected area expansion for imperiled biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Venter, Oscar; Fuller, Richard A; Segan, Daniel B; Carwardine, Josie; Brooks, Thomas; Butchart, Stuart H M; Di Marco, Moreno; Iwamura, Takuya; Joseph, Liana; O'Grady, Damien; Possingham, Hugh P; Rondinini, Carlo; Smith, Robert J; Venter, Michelle; Watson, James E M

    2014-06-01

    Governments have agreed to expand the global protected area network from 13% to 17% of the world's land surface by 2020 (Aichi target 11) and to prevent the further loss of known threatened species (Aichi target 12). These targets are interdependent, as protected areas can stem biodiversity loss when strategically located and effectively managed. However, the global protected area estate is currently biased toward locations that are cheap to protect and away from important areas for biodiversity. Here we use data on the distribution of protected areas and threatened terrestrial birds, mammals, and amphibians to assess current and possible future coverage of these species under the convention. We discover that 17% of the 4,118 threatened vertebrates are not found in a single protected area and that fully 85% are not adequately covered (i.e., to a level consistent with their likely persistence). Using systematic conservation planning, we show that expanding protected areas to reach 17% coverage by protecting the cheapest land, even if ecoregionally representative, would increase the number of threatened vertebrates covered by only 6%. However, the nonlinear relationship between the cost of acquiring land and species coverage means that fivefold more threatened vertebrates could be adequately covered for only 1.5 times the cost of the cheapest solution, if cost efficiency and threatened vertebrates are both incorporated into protected area decision making. These results are robust to known errors in the vertebrate range maps. The Convention on Biological Diversity targets may stimulate major expansion of the global protected area estate. If this expansion is to secure a future for imperiled species, new protected areas must be sited more strategically than is presently the case. PMID:24960185

  15. Targeting global protected area expansion for imperiled biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Venter, Oscar; Fuller, Richard A; Segan, Daniel B; Carwardine, Josie; Brooks, Thomas; Butchart, Stuart H M; Di Marco, Moreno; Iwamura, Takuya; Joseph, Liana; O'Grady, Damien; Possingham, Hugh P; Rondinini, Carlo; Smith, Robert J; Venter, Michelle; Watson, James E M

    2014-06-01

    Governments have agreed to expand the global protected area network from 13% to 17% of the world's land surface by 2020 (Aichi target 11) and to prevent the further loss of known threatened species (Aichi target 12). These targets are interdependent, as protected areas can stem biodiversity loss when strategically located and effectively managed. However, the global protected area estate is currently biased toward locations that are cheap to protect and away from important areas for biodiversity. Here we use data on the distribution of protected areas and threatened terrestrial birds, mammals, and amphibians to assess current and possible future coverage of these species under the convention. We discover that 17% of the 4,118 threatened vertebrates are not found in a single protected area and that fully 85% are not adequately covered (i.e., to a level consistent with their likely persistence). Using systematic conservation planning, we show that expanding protected areas to reach 17% coverage by protecting the cheapest land, even if ecoregionally representative, would increase the number of threatened vertebrates covered by only 6%. However, the nonlinear relationship between the cost of acquiring land and species coverage means that fivefold more threatened vertebrates could be adequately covered for only 1.5 times the cost of the cheapest solution, if cost efficiency and threatened vertebrates are both incorporated into protected area decision making. These results are robust to known errors in the vertebrate range maps. The Convention on Biological Diversity targets may stimulate major expansion of the global protected area estate. If this expansion is to secure a future for imperiled species, new protected areas must be sited more strategically than is presently the case.

  16. US protected lands mismatch biodiversity priorities

    PubMed Central

    Pimm, Stuart L.; Sexton, Joseph O.

    2015-01-01

    Because habitat loss is the main cause of extinction, where and how much society chooses to protect is vital for saving species. The United States is well positioned economically and politically to pursue habitat conservation should it be a societal goal. We assessed the US protected area portfolio with respect to biodiversity in the country. New synthesis maps for terrestrial vertebrates, freshwater fish, and trees permit comparison with protected areas to identify priorities for future conservation investment. Although the total area protected is substantial, its geographic configuration is nearly the opposite of patterns of endemism within the country. Most protected lands are in the West, whereas the vulnerable species are largely in the Southeast. Private land protections are significant, but they are not concentrated where the priorities are. To adequately protect the nation’s unique biodiversity, we recommend specific areas deserving additional protection, some of them including public lands, but many others requiring private investment. PMID:25847995

  17. US protected lands mismatch biodiversity priorities.

    PubMed

    Jenkins, Clinton N; Van Houtan, Kyle S; Pimm, Stuart L; Sexton, Joseph O

    2015-04-21

    Because habitat loss is the main cause of extinction, where and how much society chooses to protect is vital for saving species. The United States is well positioned economically and politically to pursue habitat conservation should it be a societal goal. We assessed the US protected area portfolio with respect to biodiversity in the country. New synthesis maps for terrestrial vertebrates, freshwater fish, and trees permit comparison with protected areas to identify priorities for future conservation investment. Although the total area protected is substantial, its geographic configuration is nearly the opposite of patterns of endemism within the country. Most protected lands are in the West, whereas the vulnerable species are largely in the Southeast. Private land protections are significant, but they are not concentrated where the priorities are. To adequately protect the nation's unique biodiversity, we recommend specific areas deserving additional protection, some of them including public lands, but many others requiring private investment.

  18. Molecular signatures that are distinctive characteristics of the vertebrates and chordates and supporting a grouping of vertebrates with the tunicates.

    PubMed

    Gupta, Radhey S

    2016-01-01

    Members of the phylum Chordata and the subphylum Vertebrata are presently distinguished solely on the basis of morphological characteristics. The relationship of the vertebrates to the two non-vertebrate chordate subphyla is also a subject of debate. Analyses of protein sequences have identified multiple conserved signature indels (CSIs) that are specific for Chordata or for Vertebrata. Five CSIs in 4 important proteins are specific for the Vertebrata, whereas two other CSIs are uniquely found in all sequenced chordate species including Ciona intestinalis and Oikapleura dioica (Tunicates) as well as Branchiostoma floridae (Cephalochordates). The shared presence of these molecular signatures by all vertebrates/chordate species, but in no other animal taxa, strongly indicates that the genetic changes represented by the identified CSIs diagnose monophyletic groups. Two other discovered CSIs are uniquely shared by different vertebrate species and by either one (Ciona intestinalis) or both tunicate (Ciona and Oikapleura) species, but they are not found in Branchiostoma or other animal species. Specific presence of these CSIs in different vertebrates and either one or both tunicate species provides strong independent evidence that the vertebrate species are more closely related to the urochordates (tunicates) than to the cephalochordates. PMID:26419477

  19. Computer Simulation and Analysis on Flow Characteristics and Distribution Patterns of Polymethylmethacrylate in Lumbar Vertebral Body and Vertebral Pedicle

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Da; Liu, Xu-li; Zhang, Bo; Liao, Dong-fa; Li, Zhi-qiang; Zhou, Jiang-jun; Kang, Xia; Zheng, Wei; Lei, Wei

    2015-01-01

    This study was designed to analyze the flow and distribution of polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) in vertebral body through computer simulation. Cadaveric lumbar vertebrae were scanned through electron beam tomography (EBT). The data was imported into Mimics software to build computational model. Vertebral body center and junction of pedicle and vertebral body were chosen as injection points. Silicone oil with viscosity of 100,000 cSt matching with PMMA bone cement was chosen for injection. The flow and distribution of silicone oil were analyzed using Fluent software. In vertebral body, silicone oil formed a circle-like shape centered by injection point on transverse and longitudinal sections, finally forming a sphere-like shape as a whole. Silicone oil diffused along lateral and posterior walls forming a circle-like shape on transverse section centered by injection point in pedicle, eventually forming a sphere-like shape as a whole. This study demonstrated that silicone oil flowed and diffused into a circle-like shape centered by injection point and finally formed a sphere-like shape as a whole in both vertebral body and pedicle. The flow and distribution of silicon oil in computational model could simulate PMMA distribution in vertebral body. It may provide theoretical evidence to reduce PMMA leakage risk during percutaneous vertebroplasty. PMID:26770969

  20. [Treatment of vertebrates according to Section 4 of the Animal Welfare Act].

    PubMed

    Wormuth, H J

    1992-01-01

    Relating to Section 4 of the Animal Protection Act "Operations on animals", general principles and arguments of the animal protection law are demonstrated; questions about painfulness and necessity of operations on vertebrates are discussed considering the recent states of knowledge and practice. Problems mainly relate to the sensation of pain in juvenile animals during operations without anaesthesia, and to castration and amputation (tails, horns, beaks, combs/wattles, teeth) as well as to destruction or removal of tissues (notching or perforation of ears) in various animal species. Finally, it is recommended to question the indispensability of operations both continuously and more frequently, and to anaesthetize young animals for specified operations despite the legal possibility to dispense from anaesthesia.

  1. Hotspots of species richness, threat and endemism for terrestrial vertebrates in SW Europe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pascual, López-López; Luigi, Maiorano; Alessandra, Falcucci; Emilio, Barba; Luigi, Boitani

    2011-09-01

    The Mediterranean basin, and the Iberian Peninsula in particular, represent an outstanding "hotspot" of biological diversity with a long history of integration between natural ecosystems and human activities. Using deductive distribution models, and considering both Spain and Portugal, we downscaled traditional range maps for terrestrial vertebrates (amphibians, breeding birds, mammals and reptiles) to the finest possible resolution with the data at hand, and we identified hotspots based on three criteria: i) species richness; ii) vulnerability, and iii) endemism. We also provided a first evaluation of the conservation status of biodiversity hotspots based on these three criteria considering both existing and proposed protected areas (i.e., Natura 2000). For the identification of hotspots, we used a method based on the cumulative distribution functions of species richness values. We found no clear surrogacy among the different types of hotspots in the Iberian Peninsula. The most important hotspots (considering all criteria) are located in the western and southwestern portions of the study area, in the Mediterranean biogeographical region. Existing protected areas are not specifically concentrated in areas of high species richness, with only 5.2% of the hotspots of total richness being currently protected. The Natura 2000 network can potentially constitute an important baseline for protecting vertebrate diversity in the Iberian Peninsula although further improvements are needed. We suggest taking a step forward in conservation planning in the Mediterranean basin, explicitly considering the history of the region as well as its present environmental context. This would allow moving from traditional reserve networks (conservation focused on "patterns") to considerations about the "processes" that generated present biodiversity.

  2. Development of respiratory rhythm generation in ectothermic vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Hedrick, Michael S

    2005-11-15

    Compared with birds and mammals, very little is known about the development and regulation of respiratory rhythm generation in ectothermic vertebrates. The development and regulation of respiratory rhythm generation in ectothermic vertebrates (fish, amphibians and reptiles) should provide insight into the evolution of these mechanisms. One useful model for examining the development of respiratory rhythm generation in ectothermic vertebrates has emerged from studies with the North American bullfrog (Rana catesbeiana). A major advantage of bullfrogs as a comparative model for respiratory rhythm generation is that respiratory output may be measured at all stages of development, both in vivo and in vitro. An emerging view of recent studies in developing bullfrogs is that many of the mechanisms of respiratory rhythm generation are very similar to those seen in birds and mammals. The overall conclusion from these studies is that respiratory rhythm generation during development may be highly conserved during evolution. The development of respiratory rhythm generation in mammals may, therefore, reflect the antecedent mechanisms seen in ectothermic vertebrates. The main focus of this brief review is to discuss recent data on the development of respiratory rhythm generation in ectothermic vertebrates, with particular emphasis on the North American bullfrog (R. catesbeiana) as a model. PMID:15914099

  3. An interactive tutorial-based training technique for vertebral morphometry.

    PubMed

    Gardner, J C; von Ingersleben, G; Heyano, S L; Chesnut, C H

    2001-01-01

    The purpose of this work was to develop a computer-based procedure for training technologists in vertebral morphometry. The utility of the resulting interactive, tutorial based training method was evaluated in this study. The training program was composed of four steps: (1) review of an online tutorial, (2) review of analyzed spine images, (3) practice in fiducial point placement and (4) testing. During testing, vertebral heights were measured from digital, lateral spine images containing osteoporotic fractures. Inter-observer measurement precision was compared between research technicians, and between technologists and radiologist. The technologists participating in this study had no prior experience in vertebral morphometry. Following completion of the online training program, good inter-observer measurement precision was seen between technologists, showing mean coefficients of variation of 2.33% for anterior, 2.87% for central and 2.65% for posterior vertebral heights. Comparisons between the technicians and radiologist ranged from 2.19% to 3.18%. Slightly better precision values were seen with height measurements compared with height ratios, and with unfractured compared with fractured vertebral bodies. The findings of this study indicate that self-directed, tutorial-based training for spine image analyses is effective, resulting in good inter-observer measurement precision. The interactive tutorial-based approach provides standardized training methods and assures consistency of instructional technique over time.

  4. Contribution of the live-vertebrate trade toward taxonomic homogenization.

    PubMed

    Romagosa, Christina M; Guyer, Craig; Wooten, Michael C

    2009-08-01

    The process of taxonomic homogenization occurs through two mechanisms, extinctions and introductions, and leads to a reduction of global biodiversity. We used available U.S. trade data as a proxy for global trade in live vertebrates to assess the contribution of trade to the process of taxonomic homogenization. Data included all available U.S. importation and exportation records, estimation of extinction risk, and reports of establishment outside the native range for species within six vertebrate groups. Based on Monte Carlo sampling, the number of species traded, established outside of the native range, and threatened with extinction was not randomly distributed among vertebrate families. Twenty-eight percent of vertebrate families that were traded preferentially were also established or threatened with extinction, an unusually high percentage compared with the 7% of families that were not traded preferentially but that became established or threatened with extinction. The importance of trade in homogenization of vertebrates suggests that additional efforts should be made to prevent introductions and extinctions through this medium.

  5. The common ancestral core of vertebrate and fungal telomerase RNAs.

    PubMed

    Qi, Xiaodong; Li, Yang; Honda, Shinji; Hoffmann, Steve; Marz, Manja; Mosig, Axel; Podlevsky, Joshua D; Stadler, Peter F; Selker, Eric U; Chen, Julian J-L

    2013-01-01

    Telomerase is a ribonucleoprotein with an intrinsic telomerase RNA (TER) component. Within yeasts, TER is remarkably large and presents little similarity in secondary structure to vertebrate or ciliate TERs. To better understand the evolution of fungal telomerase, we identified 74 TERs from Pezizomycotina and Taphrinomycotina subphyla, sister clades to budding yeasts. We initially identified TER from Neurospora crassa using a novel deep-sequencing-based approach, and homologous TER sequences from available fungal genome databases by computational searches. Remarkably, TERs from these non-yeast fungi have many attributes in common with vertebrate TERs. Comparative phylogenetic analysis of highly conserved regions within Pezizomycotina TERs revealed two core domains nearly identical in secondary structure to the pseudoknot and CR4/5 within vertebrate TERs. We then analyzed N. crassa and Schizosaccharomyces pombe telomerase reconstituted in vitro, and showed that the two RNA core domains in both systems can reconstitute activity in trans as two separate RNA fragments. Furthermore, the primer-extension pulse-chase analysis affirmed that the reconstituted N. crassa telomerase synthesizes TTAGGG repeats with high processivity, a common attribute of vertebrate telomerase. Overall, this study reveals the common ancestral cores of vertebrate and fungal TERs, and provides insights into the molecular evolution of fungal TER structure and function.

  6. Vertebral evolution and the diversification of squamate reptiles.

    PubMed

    Bergmann, Philip J; Irschick, Duncan J

    2012-04-01

    Taxonomic, morphological, and functional diversity are often discordant and independent components of diversity. A fundamental and largely unanswered question in evolutionary biology is why some clades diversify primarily in some of these components and not others. Dramatic variation in trunk vertebral numbers (14 to >300) among squamate reptiles coincides with different body shapes, and snake-like body shapes have evolved numerous times. However, whether increased evolutionary rates or numbers of vertebrae underlie body shape and taxonomic diversification is unknown. Using a supertree of squamates including 1375 species, and corresponding vertebral and body shape data, we show that increased rates of evolution in vertebral numbers have coincided with increased rates and disparity in body shape evolution, but not changes in rates of taxonomic diversification. We also show that the evolution of many vertebrae has not spurred or inhibited body shape or taxonomic diversification, suggesting that increased vertebral number is not a key innovation. Our findings demonstrate that lineage attributes such as the relaxation of constraints on vertebral number can facilitate the evolution of novel body shapes, but that different factors are responsible for body shape and taxonomic diversification.

  7. The amphioxus genome illuminates vertebrate origins and cephalochordate biology

    PubMed Central

    Holland, Linda Z.; Albalat, Ricard; Azumi, Kaoru; Benito-Gutiérrez, Èlia; Blow, Matthew J.; Bronner-Fraser, Marianne; Brunet, Frederic; Butts, Thomas; Candiani, Simona; Dishaw, Larry J.; Ferrier, David E.K.; Garcia-Fernàndez, Jordi; Gibson-Brown, Jeremy J.; Gissi, Carmela; Godzik, Adam; Hallböök, Finn; Hirose, Dan; Hosomichi, Kazuyoshi; Ikuta, Tetsuro; Inoko, Hidetoshi; Kasahara, Masanori; Kasamatsu, Jun; Kawashima, Takeshi; Kimura, Ayuko; Kobayashi, Masaaki; Kozmik, Zbynek; Kubokawa, Kaoru; Laudet, Vincent; Litman, Gary W.; McHardy, Alice C.; Meulemans, Daniel; Nonaka, Masaru; Olinski, Robert P.; Pancer, Zeev; Pennacchio, Len A.; Pestarino, Mario; Rast, Jonathan P.; Rigoutsos, Isidore; Robinson-Rechavi, Marc; Roch, Graeme; Saiga, Hidetoshi; Sasakura, Yasunori; Satake, Masanobu; Satou, Yutaka; Schubert, Michael; Sherwood, Nancy; Shiina, Takashi; Takatori, Naohito; Tello, Javier; Vopalensky, Pavel; Wada, Shuichi; Xu, Anlong; Ye, Yuzhen; Yoshida, Keita; Yoshizaki, Fumiko; Yu, Jr-Kai; Zhang, Qing; Zmasek, Christian M.; de Jong, Pieter J.; Osoegawa, Kazutoyo; Putnam, Nicholas H.; Rokhsar, Daniel S.; Satoh, Noriyuki; Holland, Peter W.H.

    2008-01-01

    Cephalochordates, urochordates, and vertebrates evolved from a common ancestor over 520 million years ago. To improve our understanding of chordate evolution and the origin of vertebrates, we intensively searched for particular genes, gene families, and conserved noncoding elements in the sequenced genome of the cephalochordate Branchiostoma floridae, commonly called amphioxus or lancelets. Special attention was given to homeobox genes, opsin genes, genes involved in neural crest development, nuclear receptor genes, genes encoding components of the endocrine and immune systems, and conserved cis-regulatory enhancers. The amphioxus genome contains a basic set of chordate genes involved in development and cell signaling, including a fifteenth Hox gene. This set includes many genes that were co-opted in vertebrates for new roles in neural crest development and adaptive immunity. However, where amphioxus has a single gene, vertebrates often have two, three, or four paralogs derived from two whole-genome duplication events. In addition, several transcriptional enhancers are conserved between amphioxus and vertebrates—a very wide phylogenetic distance. In contrast, urochordate genomes have lost many genes, including a diversity of homeobox families and genes involved in steroid hormone function. The amphioxus genome also exhibits derived features, including duplications of opsins and genes proposed to function in innate immunity and endocrine systems. Our results indicate that the amphioxus genome is elemental to an understanding of the biology and evolution of nonchordate deuterostomes, invertebrate chordates, and vertebrates. PMID:18562680

  8. A comparative view of regenerative neurogenesis in vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Alunni, Alessandro; Bally-Cuif, Laure

    2016-03-01

    In all vertebrate species studied thus far, the adult central nervous system harbors neural stem cells that sustain constitutive neurogenesis, as well as latent neural progenitors that can be awakened in lesional contexts. In spite of this common theme, many species differ dramatically in their ability to recruit constitutive progenitors, to awaken latent progenitors, or to enhance or bias neural progenitor fate to achieve successful neuronal repair. This Review summarizes the striking similarities in the essential molecular and cellular properties of adult neural stem cells between different vertebrate species, both under physiological and reparative conditions. It also emphasizes the differences in the reparative process across evolution and how the study of non-mammalian models can provide insights into both basic neural stem cell properties and stimulatory cues shared between vertebrates, and subsequent neurogenic events, which are abortive under reparative conditions in mammals. PMID:26932669

  9. Vertebral burst fractures: CT analysis of the retropulsed fragment

    SciTech Connect

    Guerra, J. Jr.; Garfin, S.R.; Resnick, D.

    1984-12-01

    Ten cases of retropulsed thoracolumbar vertebral body fragments that had been documented by CT were reviewed to define and characterize the nature, appearance, and position of the retropulsed fragment. All of the retropulsed fragments arose from the superior aspect of the vertebral body. Five of ten patients had a vertical fracture within the retropulsed fragment. Six of ten patients had an associated vertical or Y-shaped fracture originating from the region of the basivertebral foramen and passing into the inferior one-half of the vertebral body. The presence of a retropulsed fragment is nearly pathognomonic of an axial compression injury. Characteristics of this lesion that may hinder surgical reduction are the intra-fragment fracture, rotation, and craniocaudad movement.

  10. Evolutionary perspectives on clonal reproduction in vertebrate animals

    PubMed Central

    Avise, John C.

    2015-01-01

    A synopsis is provided of different expressions of whole-animal vertebrate clonality (asexual organismal-level reproduction), both in the laboratory and in nature. For vertebrate taxa, such clonal phenomena include the following: human-mediated cloning via artificial nuclear transfer; intergenerational clonality in nature via parthenogenesis and gynogenesis; intergenerational hemiclonality via hybridogenesis and kleptogenesis; intragenerational clonality via polyembryony; and what in effect qualifies as clonal replication via self-fertilization and intense inbreeding by simultaneous hermaphrodites. Each of these clonal or quasi-clonal mechanisms is described, and its evolutionary genetic ramifications are addressed. By affording an atypical vantage on standard vertebrate reproduction, clonality offers fresh perspectives on the evolutionary and ecological significance of recombination-derived genetic variety. PMID:26195735

  11. Congenital malformations of the vertebral column in ancient amphibians.

    PubMed

    Witzmann, F; Rothschild, B M; Hampe, O; Sobral, G; Gubin, Y M; Asbach, P

    2014-04-01

    Temnospondyls, the largest group of Palaeozoic and Mesozoic amphibians, primitively possess rhachitomous vertebrae with multipartite centra (consisting of one horse-shoe-shaped inter- and paired pleurocentra). In a group of temnospondyls, the stereospondyls, the intercentra became pronounced and disc-like, whereas the pleurocentra were reduced. We report the presence of congenital vertebral malformations (hemi, wedge and block vertebrae) in Permian and Triassic temnospondyls, showing that defects of formation and segmentation in the tetrapod vertebral column represent a fundamental failure of somitogenesis that can be followed throughout tetrapod evolution. This is irrespective of the type of affected vertebra, that is, rhachitomous or stereospondylous, and all components of the vertebra can be involved (intercentrum, pleurocentrum and neural arch), either together or independently on their own. This is the oldest known occurrence of wedge vertebra and congenital block vertebra described in fossil tetrapods. The frequency of vertebral congenital malformations in amphibians appears unchanged from the Holocene.

  12. A comparison of potato and vertebrate lactate dehydrogenases.

    PubMed Central

    Poerio, E; Davies, D D

    1980-01-01

    A 2000-fold purification of L(+)-lactate dehydrogenase from potatoes is reported. Five isoenzymes of lactate dehydrogenase can be detected in crude extracts of potato, and three of these are present in the purified preparation. The enzyme (mol.wt. 150 000), which is composed of four subunits (mol.wt. 37 500), is active with the same oxo acids and hydroxy acids that have been reported as substrates with the same oxo acids and hydroxy acids that have been reported as substrates for vertebrate lactate dehydrogenases. These similarities between potato and vertebrate lactate dehydrogenases contrast sharply with some other reports on potato lactate dehydrogenase. These discrepancies are discussed in relation to the proposition that vertebrate and potato lactate dehydrogenases share a common evolutionary origin. PMID:7236200

  13. Percutaneous Technique for Sclerotherapy of Vertebral Hemangioma Compressing Spinal Cord

    SciTech Connect

    Gabal, Abdelwahab M.

    2002-12-15

    Purpose: In this study we report a percutaneous technique to achieve sclerosis of vertebral hemangioma and decompression of the spinal cord and nerve roots. Methods: Under CT guidance the affected vertebral body is punctured by a biopsy needle and sclerosant is injected directly into the tumor. In the case of large paravertebral extension, additional injection is given in the paravertebral soft tissue component to induce shrinkage of the whole tumor mass and release of the compressed spinal cord. Results: Using this technique we treated five patients in whom vertebral hemangioma gave rise to neurologic symptoms.In three patients, sclerotherapy was the only treatment given. In the other two patients, sclerotherapy was preceded by transcatheter embolization. Neither decompressive surgery, radiation therapy nor stabilization was required with this technique. Conclusion: Our experience with CT-guided intraosseous sclerotherapy has proved highly satisfactory.

  14. Evolutionary perspectives on clonal reproduction in vertebrate animals.

    PubMed

    Avise, John C

    2015-07-21

    A synopsis is provided of different expressions of whole-animal vertebrate clonality (asexual organismal-level reproduction), both in the laboratory and in nature. For vertebrate taxa, such clonal phenomena include the following: human-mediated cloning via artificial nuclear transfer; intergenerational clonality in nature via parthenogenesis and gynogenesis; intergenerational hemiclonality via hybridogenesis and kleptogenesis; intragenerational clonality via polyembryony; and what in effect qualifies as clonal replication via self-fertilization and intense inbreeding by simultaneous hermaphrodites. Each of these clonal or quasi-clonal mechanisms is described, and its evolutionary genetic ramifications are addressed. By affording an atypical vantage on standard vertebrate reproduction, clonality offers fresh perspectives on the evolutionary and ecological significance of recombination-derived genetic variety. PMID:26195735

  15. Evolutionary perspectives on clonal reproduction in vertebrate animals.

    PubMed

    Avise, John C

    2015-07-21

    A synopsis is provided of different expressions of whole-animal vertebrate clonality (asexual organismal-level reproduction), both in the laboratory and in nature. For vertebrate taxa, such clonal phenomena include the following: human-mediated cloning via artificial nuclear transfer; intergenerational clonality in nature via parthenogenesis and gynogenesis; intergenerational hemiclonality via hybridogenesis and kleptogenesis; intragenerational clonality via polyembryony; and what in effect qualifies as clonal replication via self-fertilization and intense inbreeding by simultaneous hermaphrodites. Each of these clonal or quasi-clonal mechanisms is described, and its evolutionary genetic ramifications are addressed. By affording an atypical vantage on standard vertebrate reproduction, clonality offers fresh perspectives on the evolutionary and ecological significance of recombination-derived genetic variety.

  16. Cement Leakage into Adjacent Vertebral Body Following Percutaneous Vertebroplasty

    PubMed Central

    Park, Jae Hoo; Kim, Hyeun Sung

    2016-01-01

    Percutaneous vertebroplasty (PV) is a minimally invasive procedure for osteoporotic vertebral compression fractures that fail to respond to conventional conservative treatment. It significantly improves intolerable back pain within hours, and has a low complication rate. Although rare, PV is not free of complications, most of which are directly related to cement leakage. Because of its association with new adjacent fracture, the importance of cement leakage into the adjacent disc space is paramount. Here, we report an interesting case of cement leakage into the adjacent upper vertebral body as well as disc space following PV. To the best of our knowledge, there has been no report of cement leakage into the adjacent vertebral body following PV. This rare case is presented along with a review of the literature. PMID:27437018

  17. A comparative view of regenerative neurogenesis in vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Alunni, Alessandro; Bally-Cuif, Laure

    2016-01-01

    In all vertebrate species studied thus far, the adult central nervous system harbors neural stem cells that sustain constitutive neurogenesis, as well as latent neural progenitors that can be awakened in lesional contexts. In spite of this common theme, many species differ dramatically in their ability to recruit constitutive progenitors, to awaken latent progenitors, or to enhance or bias neural progenitor fate to achieve successful neuronal repair. This Review summarizes the striking similarities in the essential molecular and cellular properties of adult neural stem cells between different vertebrate species, both under physiological and reparative conditions. It also emphasizes the differences in the reparative process across evolution and how the study of non-mammalian models can provide insights into both basic neural stem cell properties and stimulatory cues shared between vertebrates, and subsequent neurogenic events, which are abortive under reparative conditions in mammals. PMID:26932669

  18. Evolution and ecology of retinal photoreception in early vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Collin, Shaun P

    2010-01-01

    Visual ecology or the relationship between the visual system of an animal and its environment has proven to be a crucial research field for establishing general concepts of adaptation, specialization and evolution. The visual neuroscientist is indeed confronted with a plethora of different visual characteristics, each seemingly optimised for each species' ecological niche, but often without a clear understanding of the evolutionary constraints at play. However, before we are able to fully understand the influence(s) of ecology and phylogeny on visual system design in vertebrates, it is first necessary to understand the basic bauplan of key representatives of each taxa. This review examines photoreception in hagfishes, lampreys, cartilaginous fishes and lungfishes with an eye to their ecology using a range of neurobiological methods including anatomy, microspectrophotometry and molecular genetics. These early vertebrates represent critical stages in evolution and surprisingly possess a level of visual complexity that is almost unrivalled in other vertebrates.

  19. Vertebrate palaeontology of Australasia into the twenty-first century.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Jacqueline M T; Molak, Martyna; Black, Karen H; Fitzgerald, Erich M G; Travouillon, Kenny J; Ho, Simon Y W

    2011-12-23

    The 13th Conference on Australasian Vertebrate Evolution Palaeontology and Systematics (CAVEPS) took place in Perth, Western Australia, from 27 to 30 April 2011. This biennial meeting was jointly hosted by Curtin University, the Western Australian Museum, Murdoch University and the University of Western Australia. Researchers from diverse disciplines addressed many aspects of vertebrate evolution, including functional morphology, phylogeny, ecology and extinctions. New additions to the fossil record were reported, especially from hitherto under-represented ages and clades. Yet, application of new techniques in palaeobiological analyses dominated, such as dental microwear and geochronology, and technological advances, including computed tomography and ancient biomolecules. This signals a shift towards increased emphasis in interpreting broader evolutionary patterns and processes. Nonetheless, further field exploration for new fossils and systematic descriptions will continue to shape our understanding of vertebrate evolution in this little-studied, but most unusual, part of the globe.

  20. The largest Silurian vertebrate and its palaeoecological implications.

    PubMed

    Choo, Brian; Zhu, Min; Zhao, Wenjin; Jia, Liaotao; Zhu, You'an

    2014-06-12

    An apparent absence of Silurian fishes more than half-a-metre in length has been viewed as evidence that gnathostomes were restricted in size and diversity prior to the Devonian. Here we describe the largest pre-Devonian vertebrate (Megamastax amblyodus gen. et sp. nov.), a predatory marine osteichthyan from the Silurian Kuanti Formation (late Ludlow, ~423 million years ago) of Yunnan, China, with an estimated length of about 1 meter. The unusual dentition of the new form suggests a durophagous diet which, combined with its large size, indicates a considerable degree of trophic specialisation among early osteichthyans. The lack of large Silurian vertebrates has recently been used as constraint in palaeoatmospheric modelling, with purported lower oxygen levels imposing a physiological size limit. Regardless of the exact causal relationship between oxygen availability and evolutionary success, this finding refutes the assumption that pre-Emsian vertebrates were restricted to small body sizes.

  1. Fish and frogs: models for vertebrate cilia signaling

    PubMed Central

    Wessely, Oliver; Obara, Tomoko

    2013-01-01

    The presence of cilia in many vertebrate cell types and its function has been ignored for many years. Only in the past few years has its importance been rediscovered. In part, this was triggered by the realization that many gene products mutated in polycystic kidney diseases are localized to cilia and dysfunctional cilia result in kidney disease. Another breakthrough was the observation that the establishment of the left-right body axis is dependent on cilia function. Since then, many other developmental paradigms have been shown to rely on cilia-dependent signaling. In addition to mouse and Chlamydomonas, lower vertebrate model systems such as zebrafish, medaka and Xenopus have provided important new insights into cilia signaling and its role during embryonic development. This review will summarize those studies. We will also illustrate how these lower vertebrates are promising model systems for future studies defining the physiological function of cilia during organogenesis and disease pathophysiology. PMID:17981674

  2. Heparan sulfate proteoglycans: a sugar code for vertebrate development?

    PubMed

    Poulain, Fabienne E; Yost, H Joseph

    2015-10-15

    Heparan sulfate proteoglycans (HSPGs) have long been implicated in a wide range of cell-cell signaling and cell-matrix interactions, both in vitro and in vivo in invertebrate models. Although many of the genes that encode HSPG core proteins and the biosynthetic enzymes that generate and modify HSPG sugar chains have not yet been analyzed by genetics in vertebrates, recent studies have shown that HSPGs do indeed mediate a wide range of functions in early vertebrate development, for example during left-right patterning and in cardiovascular and neural development. Here, we provide a comprehensive overview of the various roles of HSPGs in these systems and explore the concept of an instructive heparan sulfate sugar code for modulating vertebrate development. PMID:26487777

  3. Evolution of a vertebrate social decision-making network.

    PubMed

    O'Connell, Lauren A; Hofmann, Hans A

    2012-06-01

    Animals evaluate and respond to their social environment with adaptive decisions. Revealing the neural mechanisms of such decisions is a major goal in biology. We analyzed expression profiles for 10 neurochemical genes across 12 brain regions important for decision-making in 88 species representing five vertebrate lineages. We found that behaviorally relevant brain regions are remarkably conserved over 450 million years of evolution. We also find evidence that different brain regions have experienced different selection pressures, because spatial distribution of neuroendocrine ligands are more flexible than their receptors across vertebrates. Our analysis suggests that the diversity of social behavior in vertebrates can be explained, in part, by variations on a theme of conserved neural and gene expression networks.

  4. The largest Silurian vertebrate and its palaeoecological implications

    PubMed Central

    Choo, Brian; Zhu, Min; Zhao, Wenjin; Jia, Liaotao; Zhu, You'an

    2014-01-01

    An apparent absence of Silurian fishes more than half-a-metre in length has been viewed as evidence that gnathostomes were restricted in size and diversity prior to the Devonian. Here we describe the largest pre-Devonian vertebrate (Megamastax amblyodus gen. et sp. nov.), a predatory marine osteichthyan from the Silurian Kuanti Formation (late Ludlow, ~423 million years ago) of Yunnan, China, with an estimated length of about 1 meter. The unusual dentition of the new form suggests a durophagous diet which, combined with its large size, indicates a considerable degree of trophic specialisation among early osteichthyans. The lack of large Silurian vertebrates has recently been used as constraint in palaeoatmospheric modelling, with purported lower oxygen levels imposing a physiological size limit. Regardless of the exact causal relationship between oxygen availability and evolutionary success, this finding refutes the assumption that pre-Emsian vertebrates were restricted to small body sizes. PMID:24921626

  5. Translational control of tropomyosin expression in vertebrate hearts.

    PubMed

    Dube, Dipak K; McLean, Matthew D; Dube, Syamalima; Poiesz, Bernard J

    2014-09-01

    The tropomyosin (TM) gene family produces a set of related TM proteins with important functions in striated and smooth muscle, and nonmuscle cells. In vertebrate striated muscle, the thin filament consists largely of actin, TM, the troponin (Tn) complex (Tn-I, Tn-C and Tn-T), and tropomodulin (Tmod) and is responsible for mediating Ca(2+) control of muscle contraction and relaxation. There are four known genes (designated as TPM1, TPM2, TPM3, and TPM4) for TM in vertebrates. The four TM genes generate a multitude of tissue- and developmental-specific isoforms through the use of different promoters, alternative mRNA splicing, different 3'-end mRNA processing and tissue-specific translational control. In this review, we have focused mainly on the regulation of TM expression in striated muscles, primarily in vertebrate hearts with special emphasis on translational control using mouse and Mexican axolotl animal models. PMID:25125172

  6. Vertebral discitis after laparoscopic resection rectopexy: a rare differential diagnosis.

    PubMed

    Probst, Pascal; Knoll, Sarah-Noemi; Breitenstein, Stefan; Karrer, Urs

    2014-01-01

    Vertebral discitis usually arises from haematogenous spread of pathogens to the discs and bones. Vertebral discitis can rarely occur as a complication after laparoscopic operations with fixating sutures on the promontory. We report the case of an 81-year-old woman who underwent a laparoscopic resection rectopexy because of rectal prolapse. Weeks after the operation, the patient developed lower back pain with radiation to both legs not responding to symptomatic therapy. Two months later, a magnetic resonance imaging of the lumbar spine showed vertebral osteomyelitis and discitis. A fixation on the promontory may be sufficiently traumatic to the spine to pave the way for subsequent infection. A high index of suspicion should be raised in patients with persistent, severe back pain. Anamnesis, imageing and an adequate specimen from the affected area for microbiological analysis are crucial for timely diagnosis and appropriate management involving targeted and prolonged antimicrobial therapy.

  7. Vertebral discitis after laparoscopic resection rectopexy: a rare differential diagnosis

    PubMed Central

    Probst, Pascal; Knoll, Sarah-Noemi; Breitenstein, Stefan; Karrer, Urs

    2014-01-01

    Vertebral discitis usually arises from haematogenous spread of pathogens to the discs and bones. Vertebral discitis can rarely occur as a complication after laparoscopic operations with fixating sutures on the promontory. We report the case of an 81-year-old woman who underwent a laparoscopic resection rectopexy because of rectal prolapse. Weeks after the operation, the patient developed lower back pain with radiation to both legs not responding to symptomatic therapy. Two months later, a magnetic resonance imaging of the lumbar spine showed vertebral osteomyelitis and discitis. A fixation on the promontory may be sufficiently traumatic to the spine to pave the way for subsequent infection. A high index of suspicion should be raised in patients with persistent, severe back pain. Anamnesis, imageing and an adequate specimen from the affected area for microbiological analysis are crucial for timely diagnosis and appropriate management involving targeted and prolonged antimicrobial therapy. PMID:25084791

  8. Concordia discors: duality in the origin of the vertebrate tail.

    PubMed

    Handrigan, Gregory R

    2003-03-01

    The vertebrate tail is an extension of the main body axis caudal to the anus. The developmental origin of this structure has been a source of debate amongst embryologists for the past century. Some view tail development as a continuation of the morphogenetic processes that shape the head and trunk (i.e. gastrulation). The alternative view, secondary development, holds that the tail forms in a manner similar to limb development, i.e. by secondary induction. Previous developmental studies have provided support for both views. Here I revisit these studies, describing caudal morphogenesis in select vertebrates, the associated genes and developmental defects, and, as a relevant aside, consider the developmental and evolutionary relationships of primary and secondary neurulation. I conclude that caudal development enlists both gastrulation and secondary induction, and that the application of recent high-resolution cell labelling technology may clarify how these discordant programmes interact in building the vertebrate tail.

  9. The vertebrate fauna of Ichauway, Baker County, GA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Smith, L.L.; Steen, D.A.; Stober, J.M.; Freeman, Mary C.; Golladay, S.W.; Conner, L.M.; Cochrane, J.

    2006-01-01

    Less than 4% of the once extensive Pinus palustris (longleaf pine) ecosystem remains today. Although longleaf pine habitats are recognized for their high species diversity, few published accounts document the vertebrate faunas of remaining tracts. Here we report on the vertebrate species richness of lchauway, an 11,300-ha property in Baker County, GA. The property includes ca. 7300 ha of longleaf pine with native ground cover, along with more than 30 seasonal wetlands and ca. 45 km of riparian habitat associated with Ichawaynochaway Creek, Big Cypress Creek, and the Flint River. The fauna includes 61 species of fish, 31 amphibians, 53 reptiles, 191 birds, and 41 mammals. Despite the relative isolation of the property from other natural ecosystems, the vertebrate fauna of lchauway is remarkably diverse and may offer an example of reference conditions to guide restoration of longleaf pine forests, associated seasonal wetlands, and riparian areas elsewhere in the southeastern U S.

  10. Active DNA demethylation at enhancers during the vertebrate phylotypic period.

    PubMed

    Bogdanović, Ozren; Smits, Arne H; de la Calle Mustienes, Elisa; Tena, Juan J; Ford, Ethan; Williams, Ruth; Senanayake, Upeka; Schultz, Matthew D; Hontelez, Saartje; van Kruijsbergen, Ila; Rayon, Teresa; Gnerlich, Felix; Carell, Thomas; Veenstra, Gert Jan C; Manzanares, Miguel; Sauka-Spengler, Tatjana; Ecker, Joseph R; Vermeulen, Michiel; Gómez-Skarmeta, José Luis; Lister, Ryan

    2016-04-01

    The vertebrate body plan and organs are shaped during a conserved embryonic phase called the phylotypic stage. However, the mechanisms that guide the epigenome through this transition and their evolutionary conservation remain elusive. Here we report widespread DNA demethylation of enhancers during the phylotypic period in zebrafish, Xenopus tropicalis and mouse. These enhancers are linked to developmental genes that display coordinated transcriptional and epigenomic changes in the diverse vertebrates during embryogenesis. Binding of Tet proteins to (hydroxy)methylated DNA and enrichment of 5-hydroxymethylcytosine in these regions implicated active DNA demethylation in this process. Furthermore, loss of function of Tet1, Tet2 and Tet3 in zebrafish reduced chromatin accessibility and increased methylation levels specifically at these enhancers, indicative of DNA methylation being an upstream regulator of phylotypic enhancer function. Overall, our study highlights a regulatory module associated with the most conserved phase of vertebrate embryogenesis and suggests an ancient developmental role for Tet dioxygenases. PMID:26928226

  11. Active DNA demethylation at enhancers during the vertebrate phylotypic period.

    PubMed

    Bogdanović, Ozren; Smits, Arne H; de la Calle Mustienes, Elisa; Tena, Juan J; Ford, Ethan; Williams, Ruth; Senanayake, Upeka; Schultz, Matthew D; Hontelez, Saartje; van Kruijsbergen, Ila; Rayon, Teresa; Gnerlich, Felix; Carell, Thomas; Veenstra, Gert Jan C; Manzanares, Miguel; Sauka-Spengler, Tatjana; Ecker, Joseph R; Vermeulen, Michiel; Gómez-Skarmeta, José Luis; Lister, Ryan

    2016-04-01

    The vertebrate body plan and organs are shaped during a conserved embryonic phase called the phylotypic stage. However, the mechanisms that guide the epigenome through this transition and their evolutionary conservation remain elusive. Here we report widespread DNA demethylation of enhancers during the phylotypic period in zebrafish, Xenopus tropicalis and mouse. These enhancers are linked to developmental genes that display coordinated transcriptional and epigenomic changes in the diverse vertebrates during embryogenesis. Binding of Tet proteins to (hydroxy)methylated DNA and enrichment of 5-hydroxymethylcytosine in these regions implicated active DNA demethylation in this process. Furthermore, loss of function of Tet1, Tet2 and Tet3 in zebrafish reduced chromatin accessibility and increased methylation levels specifically at these enhancers, indicative of DNA methylation being an upstream regulator of phylotypic enhancer function. Overall, our study highlights a regulatory module associated with the most conserved phase of vertebrate embryogenesis and suggests an ancient developmental role for Tet dioxygenases.

  12. Do global diversity patterns of vertebrates reflect those of monocots?

    PubMed

    McInnes, Lynsey; Jones, F Andrew; Orme, C David L; Sobkowiak, Benjamin; Barraclough, Timothy G; Chase, Mark W; Govaerts, Rafaël; Soltis, Douglas E; Soltis, Pamela S; Savolainen, Vincent

    2013-01-01

    Few studies of global diversity gradients in plants exist, largely because the data are not available for all species involved. Instead, most global studies have focussed on vertebrates, as these taxa have historically been associated with the most complete data. Here, we address this shortfall by first investigating global diversity gradients in monocots, a morphologically and functionally diverse clade representing a quarter of flowering plant diversity, and then assessing congruence between monocot and vertebrate diversity patterns. To do this, we create a new dataset that merges biome-level associations for all monocot genera with country-level associations for almost all ∼70,000 species. We then assess the evidence for direct versus indirect effects of this plant diversity on vertebrate diversity using a combination of linear regression and structural equation modelling (SEM). Finally, we also calculate overlap of diversity hotspots for monocots and each vertebrate taxon. Monocots follow a latitudinal gradient although with pockets of extra-tropical diversity, mirroring patterns in vertebrates. Monocot diversity is positively associated with vertebrate diversity, but the strength of correlation varies depending on the clades being compared. Monocot diversity explains marginal amounts of variance (<10%) after environmental factors have been accounted for. However, correlations remain among model residuals, and SEMs apparently reveal some direct effects of monocot richness. Our results suggest that collinear responses to environmental gradients are behind much of the congruence observed, but that there is some evidence for direct effects of producer diversity on consumer diversity. Much remains to be done before broad-scale diversity gradients among taxa are fully explained. Our dataset of monocot distributions will aid in this endeavour. PMID:23658679

  13. Unexpected multiplicity of QRFP receptors in early vertebrate evolution.

    PubMed

    Larhammar, Dan; Xu, Bo; Bergqvist, Christina A

    2014-01-01

    The neuropeptide QRFP, also called 26RFa, and its G protein-coupled receptor GPR103 have been identified in all vertebrates investigated. In mammals, this peptide-receptor pair has been found to have several effects including stimulation of appetite. Recently, we reported that a QRFP peptide is present in amphioxus, Branchiostoma floridae, and we also identified a QRFP receptor (QRFPR) that mediates a functional response to sub-nanomolar concentrations of the amphioxus peptide as well as short and long human QRFP (Xu et al., submitted). Because the ancestral vertebrate underwent two tetraploidizations, it might be expected that duplicates of the QRFP gene and its receptor gene may exist. Indeed, we report here the identification of multiple vertebrate QRFPR genes. Three QRFPR genes are present in the coelacanth Latimeria chalumnae, representing an early diverging sarcopterygian lineage. Three QRFPR genes are present in the basal actinopterygian fish, the spotted gar. Phylogenetic and chromosomal analyses show that only two of these receptor genes are orthologous between the two species, thus demonstrating a total of four distinct vertebrate genes. Three of the QRFPR genes resulted from the early vertebrate tetraploidizations and were copied along with syntenic neuropeptide Y receptor genes. The fourth QRFPR gene may be an even older and distinct lineage. Because mammals and birds have only a single QRFPR gene, this means that three genes have been lost in these lineages, and at least one of these was lost independently in mammals and birds because it is still present in a turtle. In conclusion, these results show that the QRFP system gained considerable complexity in the early stages of vertebrate evolution and still maintains much of this in some lineages, and that it has been secondarily reduced in mammals.

  14. Prevalent Morphometric Vertebral Fractures in Professional Male Rugby Players

    PubMed Central

    Hind, Karen; Birrell, Fraser; Beck, Belinda

    2014-01-01

    There is an ongoing concern about the risk of injury to the spine in professional rugby players. The objective of this study was to investigate the prevalence of vertebral fracture using vertebral fracture assessment (VFA) dual energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) imaging in professional male rugby players. Ninety five professional rugby league (n = 52) and union (n = 43) players (n = 95; age 25.9 (SD 4.3) years; BMI: 29.5 (SD 2.9) kg.m2) participated in the research. Each participant received one VFA, and one total body and lumbar spine DXA scan (GE Lunar iDXA). One hundred and twenty vertebral fractures were identified in over half of the sample by VFA. Seventy four were graded mild (grade 1), 40 moderate (grade 2) and 6 severe (grade 3). Multiple vertebral fractures (≥2) were found in 37 players (39%). There were no differences in prevalence between codes, or between forwards and backs (both 1.2 v 1.4; p>0.05). The most common sites of fracture were T8 (n = 23), T9 (n = 18) and T10 (n = 21). The mean (SD) lumbar spine bone mineral density Z-score was 2.7 (1.3) indicating high player bone mass in comparison with age- and sex-matched norms. We observed a high number of vertebral fractures using DXA VFA in professional rugby players of both codes. The incidence, aetiology and consequences of vertebral fractures in professional rugby players are unclear, and warrant timely, prospective investigation. PMID:24846310

  15. Uniextrapedicular kyphoplasty for the treatment of thoracic osteoporotic vertebral fractures.

    PubMed

    Ge, Zhaohui; Ma, Rong; Chen, Zhen; Zhang, Huiyong; Ding, Huiqiang; Liang, Siming; Suo, Zhigang

    2013-08-01

    Osteoporotic vertebral compression fractures are common and cause pain and disability. Most osteoporotic vertebral compression fractures occur in the lower thoracic and thoracolumbar spine. Percutaneous balloon kyphoplasty through a transpedicular approach is a classic procedure performed to treat osteoporotic vertebral compression fractures. However, due to the slender morphology of the pedicles, small pedicle size, and the angular severity of thoracic kyphosis, performing kyphoplasty in middle and high thoracic levels is technically challenging. The purpose of this retrospective study was to evaluate the clinical outcomes of single-balloon kyphoplasty for the treatment of thoracic osteoporotic vertebral compression fractures via an extrapedicular approach. Between July 2004 and May 2008, thirty-eight patients with thoracic osteoporotic vertebral compression fractures underwent percutaneous kyphoplasty via a unilateral extrapedicular approach. Average patient age was 60.3 years. Symptomatic levels ranged from T4 to T12. All affected vertebrae were identified via physical examination, magnetic resonance imaging, and radiographs. Pain relief, vertebral height restoration, and kyphosis correction were compared pre- and postoperatively using the visual analog scale and radiographs. The operation was successful in all patients. Average injected bone cement volume was 3.2±1.4 mL. Mean follow-up was 9.5 months. Visual analog scale pain score improved in 36 of 38 patients postoperatively. Mean visual analog scale pain score was 8.92±0.682 preoperatively and 2.40±0.31 postoperatively and remained at 2.80±0.34 until last follow-up. Mean middle body height correction ratio was 50.9%±34.6%. No lateral wedging was found in the coronal alignment of the treated vertebrae. Three (7.9%) patients sustained cement extravasation with no adverse events. Kyphoplasty through a unilateral extrapedicular approach can achieve convergent and proper cement filling in the affected

  16. Unexpected multiplicity of QRFP receptors in early vertebrate evolution

    PubMed Central

    Larhammar, Dan; Xu, Bo; Bergqvist, Christina A.

    2014-01-01

    The neuropeptide QRFP, also called 26RFa, and its G protein-coupled receptor GPR103 have been identified in all vertebrates investigated. In mammals, this peptide-receptor pair has been found to have several effects including stimulation of appetite. Recently, we reported that a QRFP peptide is present in amphioxus, Branchiostoma floridae, and we also identified a QRFP receptor (QRFPR) that mediates a functional response to sub-nanomolar concentrations of the amphioxus peptide as well as short and long human QRFP (Xu et al., submitted). Because the ancestral vertebrate underwent two tetraploidizations, it might be expected that duplicates of the QRFP gene and its receptor gene may exist. Indeed, we report here the identification of multiple vertebrate QRFPR genes. Three QRFPR genes are present in the coelacanth Latimeria chalumnae, representing an early diverging sarcopterygian lineage. Three QRFPR genes are present in the basal actinopterygian fish, the spotted gar. Phylogenetic and chromosomal analyses show that only two of these receptor genes are orthologous between the two species, thus demonstrating a total of four distinct vertebrate genes. Three of the QRFPR genes resulted from the early vertebrate tetraploidizations and were copied along with syntenic neuropeptide Y receptor genes. The fourth QRFPR gene may be an even older and distinct lineage. Because mammals and birds have only a single QRFPR gene, this means that three genes have been lost in these lineages, and at least one of these was lost independently in mammals and birds because it is still present in a turtle. In conclusion, these results show that the QRFP system gained considerable complexity in the early stages of vertebrate evolution and still maintains much of this in some lineages, and that it has been secondarily reduced in mammals. PMID:25386115

  17. Distribution, adaptation and physiological meaning of thiols from vertebrate hemoglobins.

    PubMed

    Reischl, Evaldo; Dafre, Alcir Luiz; Franco, Jeferson Luis; Wilhelm Filho, Danilo

    2007-01-01

    In the present review, the sequences of hemoglobins (Hb) of 267 adult vertebrate species belonging to eight major vertebrate taxa are examined for the presence and location of cysteinyl residues in an attempt at correlation with their ecophysiology. Essentially, all vertebrates have surface cysteinyl residues in Hb molecules whereby their thiol groups may become highly reactive. Thiol-rich Hbs may display eight or more thiols per tetramer. In vertebrates so far examined, the cysteinyl residues occur in 44 different sequence positions in alpha chains and 41 positions in beta chains. Most of them are conservatively located and occur in only a few positions in Teleostei, Aves and Mammalia, whereas they are dispersed in Amphibia. The internal cysteinyl residue alpha104 is ubiquitous in vertebrates. Residue beta93 is highly conserved in reptiles, birds and mammals. The number of cysteine residues per tetramer with solvent access varies in vertebrates, mammalians and bony fish having the lowest number of external residues, whereas nearly all external cysteine residues in Aves and Lepidosauria are of the surface crevice type. In cartilaginous fish, amphibians, Crocodylidae and fresh water turtles, a substantial portion of the solvent accessible thiols are of the totally external type. Recent evidence shows that some Hb thiol groups are highly reactive and undergo extensive and reversible S-thiolation, and that they may be implicated in interorgan redox equilibrium processes. Participation of thiol groups in nitric oxide ((*)NO) metabolism has also been proved. The evidence argues for a new physiologically relevant role for Hb via involvement in free radical and antioxidant metabolism. PMID:17368111

  18. Do Global Diversity Patterns of Vertebrates Reflect Those of Monocots?

    PubMed Central

    McInnes, Lynsey; Jones, F. Andrew; Orme, C. David L.; Sobkowiak, Benjamin; Barraclough, Timothy G.; Chase, Mark W.; Govaerts, Rafaël; Soltis, Douglas E.; Soltis, Pamela S.; Savolainen, Vincent

    2013-01-01

    Few studies of global diversity gradients in plants exist, largely because the data are not available for all species involved. Instead, most global studies have focussed on vertebrates, as these taxa have historically been associated with the most complete data. Here, we address this shortfall by first investigating global diversity gradients in monocots, a morphologically and functionally diverse clade representing a quarter of flowering plant diversity, and then assessing congruence between monocot and vertebrate diversity patterns. To do this, we create a new dataset that merges biome-level associations for all monocot genera with country-level associations for almost all ∼70,000 species. We then assess the evidence for direct versus indirect effects of this plant diversity on vertebrate diversity using a combination of linear regression and structural equation modelling (SEM). Finally, we also calculate overlap of diversity hotspots for monocots and each vertebrate taxon. Monocots follow a latitudinal gradient although with pockets of extra-tropical diversity, mirroring patterns in vertebrates. Monocot diversity is positively associated with vertebrate diversity, but the strength of correlation varies depending on the clades being compared. Monocot diversity explains marginal amounts of variance (<10%) after environmental factors have been accounted for. However, correlations remain among model residuals, and SEMs apparently reveal some direct effects of monocot richness. Our results suggest that collinear responses to environmental gradients are behind much of the congruence observed, but that there is some evidence for direct effects of producer diversity on consumer diversity. Much remains to be done before broad-scale diversity gradients among taxa are fully explained. Our dataset of monocot distributions will aid in this endeavour. PMID:23658679

  19. Evolution of crystallins for a role in the vertebrate eye lens

    PubMed Central

    Slingsby, Christine; Wistow, Graeme J; Clark, Alice R

    2013-01-01

    The camera eye lens of vertebrates is a classic example of the re-engineering of existing protein components to fashion a new device. The bulk of the lens is formed from proteins belonging to two superfamilies, the α-crystallins and the βγ-crystallins. Tracing their ancestry may throw light on the origin of the optics of the lens. The α-crystallins belong to the ubiquitous small heat shock proteins family that plays a protective role in cellular homeostasis. They form enormous polydisperse oligomers that challenge modern biophysical methods to uncover the molecular basis of their assembly structure and chaperone-like protein binding function. It is argued that a molecular phenotype of a dynamic assembly suits a chaperone function as well as a structural role in the eye lens where the constraint of preventing protein condensation is paramount. The main cellular partners of α-crystallins, the β- and γ-crystallins, have largely been lost from the animal kingdom but the superfamily is hugely expanded in the vertebrate eye lens. Their structures show how a simple Greek key motif can evolve rapidly to form a complex array of monomers and oligomers. Apart from remaining transparent, a major role of the partnership of α-crystallins with β- and γ-crystallins in the lens is to form a refractive index gradient. Here, we show some of the structural and genetic features of these two protein superfamilies that enable the rapid creation of different assembly states, to match the rapidly changing optical needs among the various vertebrates. PMID:23389822

  20. Vertebral venous channels: CT appearance and differential considerations

    SciTech Connect

    Sartoris, D.J.; Resnick, D.; Guerra, J. Jr.

    1985-06-01

    A comprehensive study of the anatomy, radiologic images, and pathology of venous channels in the thoracic and lumbar vertebral bodies was performed using cadavers and patients. These structures may be mistaken for fractures, lytic lesions, or other abnormalities on high-resolution axial computed tomographic (CT) scans of the spine. A distinct osseous wall, absence of extension over multiple contiguous levels, lack of displacement, and predominant localization in the mid-axial plane of the vertebral body are characteristic features of venous channels. An understanding of the normal intraosseous venous anatomy should prevent misinterpretation of clinical CT studies in most instances.

  1. Nucleic Acid Templated Chemical Reaction in a Live Vertebrate

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Nucleic acid templated reactions are enabled by the hybridization of probe-reagent conjugates resulting in high effective reagent concentration and fast chemical transformation. We have developed a reaction that harnesses cellular microRNA (miRNA) to yield the cleavage of a linker releasing fluorogenic rhodamine in a live vertebrate. The reaction is based on the catalytic photoreduction of an azide by a ruthenium complex. We showed that this system reports specific expression of miRNA in living tissues of a vertebrate. PMID:27413783

  2. Changes in the adult vertebrate auditory sensory epithelium after trauma.

    PubMed

    Oesterle, Elizabeth C

    2013-03-01

    Auditory hair cells transduce sound vibrations into membrane potential changes, ultimately leading to changes in neuronal firing and sound perception. This review provides an overview of the characteristics and repair capabilities of traumatized auditory sensory epithelium in the adult vertebrate ear. Injured mammalian auditory epithelium repairs itself by forming permanent scars but is unable to regenerate replacement hair cells. In contrast, injured non-mammalian vertebrate ear generates replacement hair cells to restore hearing functions. Non-sensory support cells within the auditory epithelium play key roles in the repair processes.

  3. Age of sex-determining mechanisms in vertebrates.

    PubMed

    WITSCHI, E

    1959-08-14

    Certain characteristic patterns of physiologic sex determination are not causally linked with types of genic and chromosomal constitution (XX-XY or ZW-ZZ). The observed widespread but not universal parallelism in the distribution of genetic and physiologic patterns among vertebrate groups expresses genealogic relationship. On the basis of this interpretation one may estimate the approximate evolutionary age of the mechanism of genetic sex determination. It is concluded that in all tetrapod vertebrates these mechanisms originated during the Jurassic period. Environmental conditions seem to affect the progress of this evolution. PMID:13675759

  4. Nucleic Acid Templated Chemical Reaction in a Live Vertebrate.

    PubMed

    Holtzer, Laurent; Oleinich, Igor; Anzola, Marcello; Lindberg, Eric; Sadhu, Kalyan K; Gonzalez-Gaitan, Marcos; Winssinger, Nicolas

    2016-06-22

    Nucleic acid templated reactions are enabled by the hybridization of probe-reagent conjugates resulting in high effective reagent concentration and fast chemical transformation. We have developed a reaction that harnesses cellular microRNA (miRNA) to yield the cleavage of a linker releasing fluorogenic rhodamine in a live vertebrate. The reaction is based on the catalytic photoreduction of an azide by a ruthenium complex. We showed that this system reports specific expression of miRNA in living tissues of a vertebrate.

  5. Continuum theory of gene expression waves during vertebrate segmentation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jörg, David J.; Morelli, Luis G.; Soroldoni, Daniele; Oates, Andrew C.; Jülicher, Frank

    2015-09-01

    The segmentation of the vertebrate body plan during embryonic development is a rhythmic and sequential process governed by genetic oscillations. These genetic oscillations give rise to traveling waves of gene expression in the segmenting tissue. Here we present a minimal continuum theory of vertebrate segmentation that captures the key principles governing the dynamic patterns of gene expression including the effects of shortening of the oscillating tissue. We show that our theory can quantitatively account for the key features of segmentation observed in zebrafish, in particular the shape of the wave patterns, the period of segmentation and the segment length as a function of time.

  6. Age of sex-determining mechanisms in vertebrates.

    PubMed

    WITSCHI, E

    1959-08-14

    Certain characteristic patterns of physiologic sex determination are not causally linked with types of genic and chromosomal constitution (XX-XY or ZW-ZZ). The observed widespread but not universal parallelism in the distribution of genetic and physiologic patterns among vertebrate groups expresses genealogic relationship. On the basis of this interpretation one may estimate the approximate evolutionary age of the mechanism of genetic sex determination. It is concluded that in all tetrapod vertebrates these mechanisms originated during the Jurassic period. Environmental conditions seem to affect the progress of this evolution.

  7. Genetics and evolution of ultraviolet vision in vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Yokoyama, S; Shi, Y

    2000-12-01

    Various vertebrates use ultraviolet (UV) vision for such basic behaviors as mating, foraging, and predation. We have successfully interchanged the color-sensitivities of the mouse UV pigment and the human blue pigment by introducing forward and reverse mutations at five sites. This unveils for the first time the general mechanism of UV vision. Most contemporary UV pigments in vertebrates have maintained their ancestral functions by accumulating no more than one of the five specific amino acid changes. The avian lineage is an exception, where the ancestral pigment lost UV-sensitivity but some descendants regained it by one amino acid replacement at an entirely different site.

  8. Extracranial Vertebral Artery Involvement in Neurofibromatosis Type I

    PubMed Central

    Pereira, V.M.; Geiprasert, S.; Krings, T.; Caldas, J.G.M.P.; Toulgoat, F.; Ozanne, A.; Mercier, P.; Lasjaunias, P. L.

    2007-01-01

    Summary Neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF-1) is one of the most common inherited diseases and as an autosomal dominant genetic disorder results from NF-1 gene mutation with 100% penetration and wide phenotypic variability. The disease can involve a wide variety of tissues derived from all three embryonic layers. NF-1 vasculopathy has been described primarily in peripheral arteries, but arteries supplying the CNS may also be involved. Of those, extracranial vertebral involvement is the commonest and most important. A series of four patients with NF-1 and vascular disease of the vertebral artery is described with a review of the pathophysiology, vascular phenotypes, their management and the pertinent literature. PMID:20566100

  9. Left hemibody myoclonus due to anomalous right vertebral artery.

    PubMed

    Coelho, Miguel; Marti, Maria J; Valls-Solé, Josep; Pujol, Teresa; Tolosa, Eduardo

    2005-01-01

    A 43-year-old man presented with sporadic, sudden, brief, and involuntary jerks of his left limbs and trunk muscles. The electromyographic recordings showed short-lasting highly synchronized bursts, compatible with myoclonus limited to the left hemibody. Blink reflex, masseter silent period, cortical and spinal magnetic stimulation, somatosensory cortical evoked potentials, and electroencephalogram (EEG) were normal; the EEG back-averaging showed no spikes preceding the myoclonus. Magnetic resonance imaging and magnetic resonance angiography showed the presence of an anomalous nonectasic right vertebral artery compressing the right side of ventral medulla oblongata. We hypothesize that the aberrant right vertebral artery induced abnormal activation of descending motor tracts responsible for the myoclonus.

  10. Noncanonical Wnt/PCP signaling during vertebrate gastrulation.

    PubMed

    Tada, Masazumi; Kai, Masatake

    2009-03-01

    The branch of the Wnt pathway, related to planar cell polarity signaling in Drosophila, is fundamental not only to the establishment of tissue polarity but also to a variety of morphogenetic processes in vertebrates. The genetic pathway has been noted for its similarity as well as divergence of between vertebrates and Drosophila. This review focuses on issues related to the complexity of the output of the planar cell polarity pathway during gastrulation in zebrafish and Xenopus and, to a lesser extent, during gastrulation/neurulation in mice.

  11. Vertebrate LTR retrotransposons of the Tf1/sushi group.

    PubMed

    Butler, M; Goodwin, T; Simpson, M; Singh, M; Poulter, R

    2001-03-01

    LTR retrotransposons of the Tf1/sushi group from a diversity of vertebrates, including fish, amphibians, and mammals (humans, mice, and others), are described as full-length or partial elements. These elements are compared, and the mechanisms involved in self-priming of reverse transcriptase and programmed phase shifting are inferred. Evidence is presented that in mammals these elements are still transcriptionally active and are represented as proteins. This suggests that members of the Tf1/sushi group are present as functional elements (or incorporated as partial elements into host genes) in diverse vertebrate lineages.

  12. An invertebrate stomach's view on vertebrate ecology: certain invertebrates could be used as "vertebrate samplers" and deliver DNA-based information on many aspects of vertebrate ecology.

    PubMed

    Calvignac-Spencer, Sébastien; Leendertz, Fabian H; Gilbert, M Thomas P; Schubert, Grit

    2013-11-01

    Recent studies suggest that vertebrate genetic material ingested by invertebrates (iDNA) can be used to investigate vertebrate ecology. Given the ubiquity of invertebrates that feed on vertebrates across the globe, iDNA might qualify as a very powerful tool for 21st century population and conservation biologists. Here, we identify some invertebrate characteristics that will likely influence iDNA retrieval and elaborate on the potential uses of invertebrate-derived information. We hypothesize that beyond inventorying local faunal diversity, iDNA should allow for more profound insights into wildlife population density, size, mortality, and infectious agents. Based on the similarities of iDNA with other low-quality sources of DNA, a general technical framework for iDNA analyses is proposed. As it is likely that no such thing as a single ideal iDNA sampler exists, forthcoming research efforts should aim at cataloguing invertebrate properties relevant to iDNA retrieval so as to guide future usage of the invertebrate tool box.

  13. Maternal transfer of antibodies in vertebrates: trans-generational effects on offspring immunity

    PubMed Central

    Hasselquist, Dennis; Nilsson, Jan-Åke

    2008-01-01

    Maternal effects by which females provide their offspring with non-genetic factors such as hormones, nutrients and antibodies can have an important impact on offspring fitness. In vertebrates, maternal antibodies (matAb) are transferred from the mother, via the placenta, egg yolk or milk during lactation to offspring until they are 2 weeks (birds), 4–10 weeks (rodents) and 9 months (humans) old, respectively. matAb transfer can have direct effects on offspring growth rate in birds and rodents, probably by passively protecting the newborn from common pathogens before their endogenous immune system has matured. Indirect long-term effects of matAb transfer on the offspring's own immunity can be synergistic, if matAb act as antigen templates of the accumulated immunological experience of the mother and educate the newborn's immune system. However, it may also be suppressive if matAb reduce antigen presentation to the newborn resulting in antigen-specific blocking of offspring endogenous immunity. Our aim is to review the mechanisms and direct effects of matAb transfer in vertebrates with an emphasis on birds, outline a framework for research on the long-term effects of matAb on the endogenous immune system of the mature offspring and encourage ecological and evolutionary studies of matAb transfer in non-domesticated animals. PMID:18926976

  14. The UNC-45 Myosin Chaperone: From Worms to Flies to Vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Chi F.; Melkani, Girish C.; Bernstein, Sanford I.

    2014-01-01

    UNC-45 is a UCS domain protein that is critical for myosin stability and function. It likely aides in folding myosin during cellular differentiation and maintenance and protects myosin from denaturation during stress. Invertebrates have a single unc-45 gene that is expressed in both muscle and non-muscle tissues. Vertebrates possess one gene expressed in striated muscle (unc-45b) and one that is more generally expressed (unc-45a). Structurally, UNC-45 is composed of a series of alpha-helices connected by loops. It has an N-terminal TPR domain that binds to Hsp90 and a central domain composed of armadillo repeats. Its C-terminal UCS domain, which is also comprised of helical armadillo repeats, interacts with myosin. In this review, we present biochemical, structural and genetic analyses of UNC-45 in Caenorhabditis elegans, Drosophila melanogaster and various vertebrates. Further, we provide insights into UNC-45 functions, its potential mechanism of action and its roles in human disease. PMID:25376491

  15. The clinical effect of percutaneous kyphoplasty for the treatment of multiple osteoporotic vertebral compression fractures and the prevention of new vertebral fractures

    PubMed Central

    Zhai, Weifeng; Jia, Yongwei; Wang, Jianjie; Cheng, Liming; Zeng, Zhili; Yu, Yan; Chen, Lei

    2015-01-01

    This study aimed to investigate the clinical effect of percutaneous kyphoplasty and the precautions against adjacent vertebral refractures in the treatment of multiple osteoporotic vertebral compression fractures. 54 cases (128 vertebrae) with multiple osteoporotic vertebral compression fractures from July 2007 to December 2013 treated with percutaneous kyphoplasty were retrospectively reviewed. 36 cases of them suffered from bi-segment vertebral fractures, 16 cases with tri-segment vertebral fractures and 2 cases with quadri-segment vertebral fractures. The operative effect was evaluated by visual analogue scale (VAS) score and oswestry disability index (ODI) score. Then the reasons for adjacent vertebral refractures were analyzed and the precautions were proposed. 54 cases (128 vertebrae) were admitted with percutaneous kyphoplasty successfully. No pulmonary embolism, spinal cord injury and other serious complications were found. The follow-up took 3-33 months with the average of 12 months. There was significant difference of VAS scores and ODI scores between pre-operation and post-operation (P<0.05). Bone cement leakage occurred in 23 vertebrae, and the incidence rate was 18.0%. 8 cases sustained adjacent vertebral refractures including 3 cases in the contiguous vertebral bodies and 5 cases in the interval vertebral bodies, and the incidence rate was 14.8%. 5 cases gained fracture healing after additional percutaneous kyphoplasty procedures while the other 3 cases were healed basically after conservative treatment for three months. In conclusion, percutaneous kyphoplasty is safe and effective to treat multiple osteoporotic vertebral compression fractures. However, the risk of new adjacent vertebral fractures in the multiple osteoporotic vertebral compression fractures is higher than that in the single osteoporotic vertebral compression fracture. Timely and proper treatment can reduce refractures. PMID:26550284

  16. The molecular evolution of the vertebrate behavioural repertoire

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    How the sophisticated vertebrate behavioural repertoire evolved remains a major question in biology. The behavioural repertoire encompasses the set of individual behavioural components that an organism uses when adapting and responding to changes in its external world. Although unicellular organisms, invertebrates and vertebrates share simple reflex responses, the fundamental mechanisms that resulted in the complexity and sophistication that is characteristic of vertebrate behaviours have only recently been examined. A series of behavioural genetic experiments in mice and humans support a theory that posited the importance of synapse proteome expansion in generating complexity in the behavioural repertoire. Genome duplication events, approximately 550 Ma, produced expansion in the synapse proteome that resulted in increased complexity in synapse signalling mechanisms that regulate components of the behavioural repertoire. The experiments demonstrate the importance to behaviour of the gene duplication events, the diversification of paralogues and sequence constraint. They also confirm the significance of comparative proteomic and genomic studies that identified the molecular origins of synapses in unicellular eukaryotes and the vertebrate expansion in proteome complexity. These molecular mechanisms have general importance for understanding the repertoire of behaviours in different species and for human behavioural disorders arising from synapse gene mutations. PMID:26598730

  17. Case report on vertebral artery dissection in mixed martial arts.

    PubMed

    Slowey, Michael; Maw, Graeme; Furyk, Jeremy

    2012-04-01

    A 41-year-old man presented to the ED with severe vertigo 2 days after a grappling injury while training in mixed martial arts. Imaging revealed a cerebellar infarct with complete occlusion of the right vertebral artery secondary to dissection. Management options are discussed as is the ongoing controversy regarding the safety of the sport. PMID:22487672

  18. Late Cretaceous terrestrial vertebrate fauna, North Slope, Alaska

    SciTech Connect

    Clemens, W.A.; Allison, C.W.

    1985-01-01

    Closely related terrestrial vertebrates in Cretaceous mid-latitude (30/sup 0/ to 50/sup 0/) faunas of North America and Asia as well as scattered occurrences of footprints and skin impressions suggested that in the Late Mesozoic the Alaskan North Slope supported a diverse fauna. In 1961 abundant skeletal elements of Cretaceous, Alaskan dinosaurs (hadrosaurids) were discovered by the late R.L. Liscomb. This material is being described by K.L. Davies. Additional fossils collected by E.M. Brouwers and her associates include skeletal elements of hadrosaurid and carnosaurian (.tyrannosaurid) dinosaurs and other vertebrates. The fossil locality on the North Slope is not at about 70/sup 0/N. In the Late Cretaceous the members of this fauna were subject to the daylight regime and environment at a paleolatitude closer to 80/sup 0/N. Current hypotheses attributing extinctions of dinosaurs and some other terrestrial vertebrates to impact of an extraterrestrial object cite periods of darkness, decreased temperature (possibly followed by extreme warming) and acid rain as the direct causes of their demise. Unless members of this North Slope fauna undertook long-distance migrations, their high latitude occurrence indicates groups of dinosaurs and other terrestrial vertebrates regularly tolerated months of darkness.

  19. Vertebral hemangioma coincident with metastasis of colon adenocarcinoma.

    PubMed

    Zapałowicz, Krzysztof; Bierzyńska-Macyszyn, Grażyna; Stasiów, Bartłomiej; Krzan, Aleksandra; Wierzycka, Beata; Kopycka, Anna

    2016-03-01

    The authors report on colon cancer metastasis to the L-3 vertebra, which had been previously found to be involved by an asymptomatic hemangioma. A 61-year-old female patient was admitted after onset of lumbar axial pain and weakness of the right quadriceps muscle. Her medical history included colon cancer that had been diagnosed 3 years earlier and was treated via a right hemicolectomy followed by chemotherapy. Presurgical imaging revealed an asymptomatic hemangioma in the L-3 vertebral body. Computed tomography and MRI of the spine were performed after admission and revealed a hemangioma in the L-3 vertebral body as well as a soft-tissue mass protruding from the L-3 vertebral body to the spinal canal. Treatment consisted of vertebroplasty of the hemangioma, left L-3 hemilaminectomy, and removal of the pathological mass from the spinal canal and the L-3 vertebral body. Histopathological examination revealed the presence of colon cancer metastasis and a hemangioma in the same vertebra.

  20. Global patterns in threats to vertebrates by biological invasions.

    PubMed

    Bellard, C; Genovesi, P; Jeschke, J M

    2016-01-27

    Biological invasions as drivers of biodiversity loss have recently been challenged. Fundamentally, we must know where species that are threatened by invasive alien species (IAS) live, and the degree to which they are threatened. We report the first study linking 1372 vertebrates threatened by more than 200 IAS from the completely revised Global Invasive Species Database. New maps of the vulnerability of threatened vertebrates to IAS permit assessments of whether IAS have a major influence on biodiversity, and if so, which taxonomic groups are threatened and where they are threatened. We found that centres of IAS-threatened vertebrates are concentrated in the Americas, India, Indonesia, Australia and New Zealand. The areas in which IAS-threatened species are located do not fully match the current hotspots of invasions, or the current hotspots of threatened species. The relative importance of biological invasions as drivers of biodiversity loss clearly varies across regions and taxa, and changes over time, with mammals from India, Indonesia, Australia and Europe are increasingly being threatened by IAS. The chytrid fungus primarily threatens amphibians, whereas invasive mammals primarily threaten other vertebrates. The differences in IAS threats between regions and taxa can help efficiently target IAS, which is essential for achieving the Strategic Plan 2020 of the Convention on Biological Diversity.

  1. Evidence for Evolution from the Vertebrate Fossil Record.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gingerich, Philip D.

    1983-01-01

    Discusses three examples of evolutionary transition in the vertebrate fossil record, considering evolutionary transitions at the species level. Uses archaic squirrel-like Paleocine primates, the earliest primates of modern aspect, as examples. Also reviews new evidence on the origin of whales and their transition from land to sea. (JN)

  2. Trends in Children's Concepts of Vertebrate and Invertebrate.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Braund, Martin

    1998-01-01

    Presents the results of a cross-age study of 7- to 15-year-old children on their thinking about vertebrate and invertebrate animals. Suggests experiences that could be included in the school science curriculum and argues for more classroom work relating structure with function in order to address students' conceptual difficulties. (Contains 18…

  3. [Simultaneous carotid and vertebral revascularization in the aged].

    PubMed

    Illuminati, G; Caliò, F G; Bertagni, A; Piermattei, A; Vietri, F; Martinelli, V

    1997-09-01

    Five patients of a mean age of 76, have been submitted to combined vertebral and carotid artery revascularization for a severe vertebro-basilar insufficiency. Vertebral artery revascularization consisted of a transposition to the common carotid artery in one case and of a carotid-distal vertebral artery saphenous bypass graft. The associated carotid artery revascularization consisted of a carotid endarterectomy with patch in 4 cases and without patch in one case. There were no postoperative mortality and no postoperative stroke. Postoperative morbidity included a transitory revascularization syndrome, a myocardial ischemia and a Horner's syndrome. Complete relief of vertebrobasilar symptoms was obtained in 4 patients whereas in one patient only a mild positional vertigo persisted. All vascular reconstructions have been assessed with postoperative arteriography and duplex-scan every six months. At 11 months mean follow-up, all revascularizations are patent. Combined carotid and vertebral artery surgery is effective in well selected cases, and it does not enhance the risk of the two operations performed separately. It also eliminate the possibility of failure of isolated carotid revascularization for vertebrobasilar symptoms.

  4. Case report on vertebral artery dissection in mixed martial arts.

    PubMed

    Slowey, Michael; Maw, Graeme; Furyk, Jeremy

    2012-04-01

    A 41-year-old man presented to the ED with severe vertigo 2 days after a grappling injury while training in mixed martial arts. Imaging revealed a cerebellar infarct with complete occlusion of the right vertebral artery secondary to dissection. Management options are discussed as is the ongoing controversy regarding the safety of the sport.

  5. Global patterns in threats to vertebrates by biological invasions.

    PubMed

    Bellard, C; Genovesi, P; Jeschke, J M

    2016-01-27

    Biological invasions as drivers of biodiversity loss have recently been challenged. Fundamentally, we must know where species that are threatened by invasive alien species (IAS) live, and the degree to which they are threatened. We report the first study linking 1372 vertebrates threatened by more than 200 IAS from the completely revised Global Invasive Species Database. New maps of the vulnerability of threatened vertebrates to IAS permit assessments of whether IAS have a major influence on biodiversity, and if so, which taxonomic groups are threatened and where they are threatened. We found that centres of IAS-threatened vertebrates are concentrated in the Americas, India, Indonesia, Australia and New Zealand. The areas in which IAS-threatened species are located do not fully match the current hotspots of invasions, or the current hotspots of threatened species. The relative importance of biological invasions as drivers of biodiversity loss clearly varies across regions and taxa, and changes over time, with mammals from India, Indonesia, Australia and Europe are increasingly being threatened by IAS. The chytrid fungus primarily threatens amphibians, whereas invasive mammals primarily threaten other vertebrates. The differences in IAS threats between regions and taxa can help efficiently target IAS, which is essential for achieving the Strategic Plan 2020 of the Convention on Biological Diversity. PMID:26817767

  6. The origin of the myelination program in vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Zalc, B; Goujet, D; Colman, D

    2008-06-24

    The myelin sheath was a transformative vertebrate acquisition, enabling great increases in impulse propagation velocity along axons. Not all vertebrates possess myelinated axons, however, and when myelin first appeared in the vertebrate lineage is an important open question. It has been suggested that the dual, apparently unrelated acquisitions of myelin and the hinged jaw were actually coupled in evolution [1,2]. If so, it would be expected that myelin was first acquired during the Devonian period by the oldest jawed fish, the placoderms [3]. Although myelin itself is not retained in the fossil record, within the skulls of fossilized Paleozoic vertebrate fish are exquisitely preserved imprints of cranial nerves and the foramina they traversed. Examination of these structures now suggests how the nerves functioned in vivo. In placoderms, the first hinge-jawed fish, oculomotor nerve diameters remained constant, but nerve lengths were ten times longer than in the jawless osteostraci. We infer that to accommodate this ten-fold increase in length, while maintaining a constant diameter, the oculomotor system in placoderms must have been myelinated to function as a rapidly conducting motor pathway. Placoderms were the first fish with hinged jaws and some can grow to formidable lengths, requiring a rapid conduction system, so it is highly likely that they were the first organisms with myelinated axons in the craniate lineage.

  7. Facultative parthenogenesis in a critically endangered wild vertebrate.

    PubMed

    Fields, Andrew T; Feldheim, Kevin A; Poulakis, Gregg R; Chapman, Demian D

    2015-06-01

    Facultative parthenogenesis - the ability of sexually reproducing species to sometimes produce offspring asexually - is known from a wide range of ordinarily sexually reproducing vertebrates in captivity, including some birds, reptiles and sharks [1-3]. Despite this, free-living parthenogens have never been observed in any of these taxa in the wild, although two free-living snakes were recently discovered each gestating a single parthenogen - one copperhead (Agkistrodon contortrix) and one cottonmouth (Agkistrodon piscivorus) [1]. Vertebrate parthenogens are characterized as being of the homogametic sex (e.g., females in sharks, males in birds) and by having elevated homozygosity compared to their mother [1-3], which may reduce their viability [4]. Although it is unknown if either of the parthenogenetic snakes would have been carried to term or survived in the wild, facultative parthenogenesis might have adaptive significance [1]. If this is true, it is reasonable to hypothesize that parthenogenesis would be found most often at low population density, when females risk reproductive failure because finding mates is difficult [5]. Here, we document the first examples of viable parthenogens living in a normally sexually reproducing wild vertebrate, the smalltooth sawfish (Pristis pectinata). We also provide a simple approach to screen any microsatellite DNA database for parthenogens, which will enable hypothesis-driven research on the significance of vertebrate parthenogenesis in the wild. PMID:26035783

  8. Roles of vertebrate aquaglyceroporins in arsenic transport and detoxification.

    PubMed

    Liu, Zijuan

    2010-01-01

    Aquaporins are important channel proteins that are responsible for the balance of cellular osmolarity and nutrient transport in vertebrates. Recently, new functions of these ancient channels have been found in the conduction of metalloid arsenic (As). Chronic As exposure through contaminated water and food sources is associated with multiple human diseases and endangers millions of people's health worldwide. Therefore, identification of the As transport pathways is necessary to elucidate the mechanisms of As carcinogenesis. Arsenic detoxification systems have been studied in multiple vertebrates such as mammalian mouse, rat, humans and nonmammalian vertebrates. Multiple transporters and enzymes have been shown to be involved in As translocation and cellular transformation. In these vertebrates, members ofaquaglyceroporins, which include AQP7 in kidney and AQP9 in liver, catalyze uptake of inorganic trivalent arsenite [As(III)]. AQP9, the major liver aquaglyceroporin, conducts both inorganic As(III) and organic monomethylarsonous acid [MMA(III)], an intermediate that is generated during the cellular methylation. As a channel that facilitates a downhill movement of substances dependent on the concentration gradient, AQP9 may play an important role in the simultaneous influx of inorganic As(III) from blood to liver and efflux of As metabolite MMA(III) from liver to blood. In this chapter, we will discuss the function ofaquaglyceroporins ofvertebrates in uptake and detoxification of the metalloid As.

  9. Supine vs decubitus lateral patient positioning in vertebral fracture assessment.

    PubMed

    Paggiosi, Margaret Anne; Finigan, Judith; Peel, Nicola; Eastell, Richard; Ferrar, Lynne

    2012-01-01

    In vertebral fracture assessment (VFA), lateral scans are obtained with the patient positioned supine (C-arm densitometers) or lateral decubitus (fixed-arm densitometers). We aimed to determine the impact of positioning on image quality and fracture definition. We performed supine and decubitus lateral VFA in 50 postmenopausal women and used the algorithm-based qualitative method to identify vertebral fractures. We compared the 2 techniques for the identification of fractures (kappa analysis) and compared the numbers of unreadable vertebrae (indiscernible endplates) and vertebrae that were projected obliquely (Wilcoxon matched-pairs signed-rank test). The kappa score for agreement between the VFA techniques (to identify women with vertebral fractures) was 0.84 (95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.68-0.99), and for agreement with fracture assessments made from radiographs, kappa was 0.76 (95% CI: 0.57-0.94) for both supine and decubitus lateral VFA. There were more unreadable vertebrae with supine lateral (48 vertebrae in supine lateral compared with 14 in decubitus lateral; p=0.001), but oblique projection was less common (93 vertebrae compared with 145 in decubitus lateral; p=0.002). We conclude that there were significantly different projection effects with supine and decubitus lateral VFA, but these differences did not influence the identification of vertebral fractures in our study sample.

  10. Reservoir Competence of Vertebrate Hosts for Anaplasma phagocytophilum

    PubMed Central

    Hersh, Michelle H.; Tibbetts, Michael; McHenry, Diana J.; Duerr, Shannon; Brunner, Jesse; Killilea, Mary; LoGiudice, Kathleen; Schmidt, Kenneth A.; Ostfeld, Richard S.

    2012-01-01

    Fourteen vertebrate species (10 mammals and 4 birds) were assessed for their ability to transmit Anaplasma phagocytophilum, the bacterium that causes human granulocytic anaplasmosis, to uninfected feeding ixodid ticks. Small mammals were most likely to infect ticks but all species assessed were capable of transmitting the bacterium, in contrast to previous findings. PMID:23171835

  11. Overview of Vertebrate Animal Models of Fungal Infection

    PubMed Central

    Hohl, Tobias M.

    2014-01-01

    Fungi represent emerging infectious threats to human populations worldwide. Mice and other laboratory animals have proved invaluable in modeling clinical syndromes associated with superficial and life-threatening invasive mycoses. This review outlines salient features of common vertebrate animal model systems to study fungal pathogenesis, host antifungal immune responses, and antifungal compounds. PMID:24709390

  12. Asymptomatic Lumbar Vertebral Erosion from Inferior Vena Cava Filter Perforation

    SciTech Connect

    Fang, Wayne Hieb, Robert A.; Olson, Eric; Carrera, Guillermo F.

    2007-06-15

    In 2002, a 24-year-old female trauma patient underwent prophylactic inferior vena cava filter placement. Recurrent bouts of renal stones prompted serial CT imaging in 2004. In this brief report, we describe erosion and ossification of the L3 vertebral body by a Greenfield filter strut.

  13. [Cerebellar infarction due to vertebral artery dissection in a girl].

    PubMed

    Ushida, M; Fukuda, K; Endo, S; Pu, T; Nakagawa, Y; Shiino, S; Otomune, T; Nakano, O

    1998-11-01

    We report here a case of vertebral artery dissection, which is rare in childhood. A 12-year-old, previous healthy girl was admitted to our hospital with symptoms of vertigo, tinnitus, hearing loss, nausea and vomiting. Although there was neither higher cortical dysfunction, motor weakness, sensory disturbance nor slurred speech. She could not stand up because of severe vertigo. Cranial magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) revealed a subacute cerebellar infarct. A left vertebral artery angiogram on the hospital day 3 demonstrated a sharp narrowing at the C1-C2 level. After an anticoagulant therapy for about 2 weeks, all the symptoms disappeared except for mild tinnitus. Two months later, a left vertebral artery angiogram showed an abrupt occlusion at the C1 level. MRI T1-weighted images demonstrated a thrombus within the false lumen of the dissected vessels. A flow void revealed the patency of the residual true lumen. From these findings, we made a diagnosis of vertebral artery dissection, which was considered to have caused cerebellar infarction. The patient was mostly normal at discharge, and 100 mg/day of aspirin has been given until present.

  14. Subfunctionalization and neofunctionalization of vertebrate Lef/Tcf transcription factors.

    PubMed

    Klingel, Susanne; Morath, Iris; Strietz, Juliane; Menzel, Katharina; Holstein, Thomas W; Gradl, Dietmar

    2012-08-01

    Invertebrates express a multitude of Wnt ligands and all Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathways converge to only one nuclear Lef/Tcf. In vertebrates, however, four distinct Lef/Tcfs, i.e. Tcf-1, Lef, Tcf-3, and Tcf-4 fulfill this function. At present, it is largely unknown to what extent the various Lef/Tcfs are functionally similar or diversified in vertebrates. In particular, it is not known which domains are responsible for the Tcf subtype specific functions. We investigated the conserved and non-conserved functions of the various Tcfs by using Xenopus laevis as a model organism and testing Tcfs from Hydra magnipapillata, Caenorhabditis elegans and Drosophila melanogaster. In order to identify domains relevant for the individual properties we created series of chimeric constructs consisting of parts of XTcf-3, XTcf-1 and HyTcf. Rescue experiments in Xenopus morphants revealed that the three invertebrate Tcfs tested compensated the loss of distinct Xenopus Tcfs: Drosophila Tcf (Pangolin) can substitute for the loss of XTcf-1, XTcf-3 and XTcf-4. By comparison, Caenorhabditis Tcf (Pop-1) and Hydra Tcf (HyTcf) can substitute for the loss of only XTcf-3 and XTcf-4, respectively. The domain, which is responsible for subtype specific functions is the regulatory CRD domain. A phylogenetic analysis separates Tcf-1/Lef-1 from the sister group Tcf-3/4 in the vertebrate lineage. We propose that the vertebrate specific diversification of Tcfs in vertebrates resulted in subfunctionalization of a Tcf that already united most of the Lef/Tcf functions. PMID:22641013

  15. Cells, molecules and morphogenesis: The making of the vertebrate ear

    PubMed Central

    Fritzsch, Bernd; Pauley, Sarah; Beisel, Kirk W.

    2014-01-01

    The development and evolution of mechanosensory cells and the vertebrate ear is reviewed with an emphasis on delineating the cellular, molecular and developmental basis of these changes. Outgroup comparisons suggests that mechanosensory cells are ancient features of multicellular organisms. Molecular evidence suggests that key genes involved in mechanosensory cell function and development are also conserved among metazoans. The divergent morphology of mechanosensory cells across phyla is interpreted here as ‘deep molecular homology’ that was in parallel shaped into different forms in each lineage. The vertebrate mechanosensory hair cell and its associated neuron are interpreted as uniquely derived features of vertebrates. It is proposed that the vertebrate otic placode presents a unique embryonic adaptation in which the diffusely distributed ancestral mechanosensory cells became concentrated to generate a large neurosensory precursor population. Morphogenesis of the inner ear is reviewed and shown to depend on genes expressed in and around the hindbrain that interact with the otic placode to define boundaries and polarities. These patterning genes affect downstream genes needed to maintain proliferation and to execute ear morphogenesis. We propose that fibroblast growth factors (FGFs) and their receptors (FGFRs) are a crucial central node to translate patterning into the complex morphology of the vertebrate ear. Unfortunately, the FGF and FGFR genes have not been fully analyzed in the many mutants with morphogenetic ear defects described thus far. Likewise, little information exists on the ear histogenesis and neurogenesis in many mutants. Nevertheless, a molecular mechanism is now emerging for the formation of the horizontal canal, an evolutionary novelty of the gnathostome ear. The existing general module mediating vertical canal growth and morphogenesis was modified by two sets of new genes: one set responsible for horizontal canal morphogenesis and another

  16. Comparison of ultra-conserved elements in drosophilids and vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Makunin, Igor V; Shloma, Viktor V; Stephen, Stuart J; Pheasant, Michael; Belyakin, Stepan N

    2013-01-01

    Metazoan genomes contain many ultra-conserved elements (UCEs), long sequences identical between distant species. In this study we identified UCEs in drosophilid and vertebrate species with a similar level of phylogenetic divergence measured at protein-coding regions, and demonstrated that both the length and number of UCEs are larger in vertebrates. The proportion of non-exonic UCEs declines in distant drosophilids whilst an opposite trend was observed in vertebrates. We generated a set of 2,126 Sophophora UCEs by merging elements identified in several drosophila species and compared these to the eutherian UCEs identified in placental mammals. In contrast to vertebrates, the Sophophora UCEs are depleted around transcription start sites. Analysis of 52,954 P-element, piggyBac and Minos insertions in the D. melanogaster genome revealed depletion of the P-element and piggyBac insertions in and around the Sophophora UCEs. We examined eleven fly strains with transposon insertions into the intergenic UCEs and identified associated phenotypes in five strains. Four insertions behave as recessive lethals, and in one case we observed a suppression of the marker gene within the transgene, presumably by silenced chromatin around the integration site. To confirm the lethality is caused by integration of transposons we performed a phenotype rescue experiment for two stocks and demonstrated that the excision of the transposons from the intergenic UCEs restores viability. Sequencing of DNA after the transposon excision in one fly strain with the restored viability revealed a 47 bp insertion at the original transposon integration site suggesting that the nature of the mutation is important for the appearance of the phenotype. Our results suggest that the UCEs in flies and vertebrates have both common and distinct features, and demonstrate that a significant proportion of intergenic drosophila UCEs are sensitive to disruption.

  17. Subfunctionalization and neofunctionalization of vertebrate Lef/Tcf transcription factors.

    PubMed

    Klingel, Susanne; Morath, Iris; Strietz, Juliane; Menzel, Katharina; Holstein, Thomas W; Gradl, Dietmar

    2012-08-01

    Invertebrates express a multitude of Wnt ligands and all Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathways converge to only one nuclear Lef/Tcf. In vertebrates, however, four distinct Lef/Tcfs, i.e. Tcf-1, Lef, Tcf-3, and Tcf-4 fulfill this function. At present, it is largely unknown to what extent the various Lef/Tcfs are functionally similar or diversified in vertebrates. In particular, it is not known which domains are responsible for the Tcf subtype specific functions. We investigated the conserved and non-conserved functions of the various Tcfs by using Xenopus laevis as a model organism and testing Tcfs from Hydra magnipapillata, Caenorhabditis elegans and Drosophila melanogaster. In order to identify domains relevant for the individual properties we created series of chimeric constructs consisting of parts of XTcf-3, XTcf-1 and HyTcf. Rescue experiments in Xenopus morphants revealed that the three invertebrate Tcfs tested compensated the loss of distinct Xenopus Tcfs: Drosophila Tcf (Pangolin) can substitute for the loss of XTcf-1, XTcf-3 and XTcf-4. By comparison, Caenorhabditis Tcf (Pop-1) and Hydra Tcf (HyTcf) can substitute for the loss of only XTcf-3 and XTcf-4, respectively. The domain, which is responsible for subtype specific functions is the regulatory CRD domain. A phylogenetic analysis separates Tcf-1/Lef-1 from the sister group Tcf-3/4 in the vertebrate lineage. We propose that the vertebrate specific diversification of Tcfs in vertebrates resulted in subfunctionalization of a Tcf that already united most of the Lef/Tcf functions.

  18. Recommended nomenclature for the vertebrate alcohol dehydrogenase gene family.

    PubMed

    Duester, G; Farrés, J; Felder, M R; Holmes, R S; Höög, J O; Parés, X; Plapp, B V; Yin, S J; Jörnvall, H

    1999-08-01

    The alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) gene family encodes enzymes that metabolize a wide variety of substrates, including ethanol, retinol, other aliphatic alcohols, hydroxysteroids, and lipid peroxidation products. Studies on 19 vertebrate animals have identified ADH orthologs across several species, and this has now led to questions of how best to name ADH proteins and genes. Seven distinct classes of vertebrate ADH encoded by non-orthologous genes have been defined based upon sequence homology as well as unique catalytic properties or gene expression patterns. Each class of vertebrate ADH shares <70% sequence identity with other classes of ADH in the same species. Classes may be further divided into multiple closely related isoenzymes sharing >80% sequence identity such as the case for class I ADH where humans have three class I ADH genes, horses have two, and mice have only one. Presented here is a nomenclature that uses the widely accepted vertebrate ADH class system as its basis. It follows the guidelines of human and mouse gene nomenclature committees, which recommend coordinating names across species boundaries and eliminating Roman numerals and Greek symbols. We recommend that enzyme subunits be referred to by the symbol "ADH" (alcohol dehydrogenase) followed by an Arabic number denoting the class; i.e. ADH1 for class I ADH. For genes we recommend the italicized root symbol "ADH" for human and "Adh" for mouse, followed by the appropriate Arabic number for the class; i.e. ADH1 or Adh1 for class I ADH genes. For organisms where multiple species-specific isoenzymes exist within a class, we recommend adding a capital letter after the Arabic number; i.e. ADH1A, ADH1B, and ADH1C for human alpha, beta, and gamma class I ADHs, respectively. This nomenclature will accommodate newly discovered members of the vertebrate ADH family, and will facilitate functional and evolutionary studies. PMID:10424757

  19. Chiropractic Response to a Spontaneous Vertebral Artery Dissection

    PubMed Central

    Tarola, Gary; Phillips, Reed B.

    2015-01-01

    Objective The purpose of this case report is to describe a case in which early detection and proper follow-up of spontaneous vertebral artery dissection led to satisfactory outcomes. Clinical Features A 34-year old white woman reported to a chiropractic clinic with a constant burning pain at the right side of her neck and shoulder with a limited ability to turn her head from side to side, periods of blurred vision, and muffled hearing. Dizziness, visual and auditory disturbances, and balance difficulty abated within 1 hour of onset and were not present at the time of evaluation. A pain drawing indicated burning pain in the suboccipital area, neck, and upper shoulder on the right and a pins and needles sensation on the dorsal surface of both forearms. Turning her head from side-to-side aggravated the pain, and the application of heat brought temporary relief. The Neck Disability Index score of 44 placed the patient’s pain in the most severe category. Intervention and Outcome The patient was not treated on the initial visit but was advised of the possibility of a vertebral artery or carotid artery dissection and was recommended to the emergency department for immediate evaluation. The patient declined but later was convinced by her chiropractor to present to the emergency department. A magnetic resonance angiogram of the neck and carotid arteries was performed showing that the left vertebral artery was hypoplastic and appeared to terminate at the left posterior inferior cerebellar artery. There was an abrupt moderately long segment of narrowing involving the right vertebral artery beginning near the junction of the V1 and V2 segments. The radiologist noted a concern regarding right vertebral artery dissection. Symptoms resolved and the patient was cleared of any medications but advised that if symptoms reoccurred she was to go for emergency care immediately. Conclusion Recognition and rapid response by the chiropractic physician provided the optimum outcome for

  20. Vertebrate POLQ and POLβ Cooperate in Base Excision Repair of Oxidative DNA Damage

    PubMed Central

    Yoshimura, Michio; Kohzaki, Masaoki; Nakamura, Jun; Asagoshi, Kenjiro; Sonoda, Eiichiro; Hou, Esther; Prasad, Rajendra; Wilson, Samuel H.; Tano, Keizo; Yasui, Akira; Lan, Li; Seki, Mineaki; Wood, Richard D.; Arakawa, Hiroshi; Buerstedde, Jean-Marie; Hochegger, Helfrid; Okada, Takashi; Hiraoka, Masahiro; Takeda, Shunichi

    2007-01-01

    Summary Base excision repair (BER) plays an essential role in protecting cells from mutagenic base damage caused by oxidative stress, hydrolysis, and environmental factors. POLQ is a DNA polymerase, which appears to be involved in translesion DNA synthesis (TLS) past base damage. We disrupted POLQ, and its homologs HEL308 and POLN in chicken DT40 cells, and also created polq/hel308 and polq/poln double mutants. We found that POLQ-deficient mutants exhibit hypersensitivity to oxidative base damage induced by H2O2, but not to UV or cisplatin. Surprisingly, this phenotype was synergistically increased by concomitant deletion of the major BER polymerase, POLβ. Moreover, extracts from a polq null mutant cell line show reduced BER activity, and POLQ, like POLβ, accumulated rapidly at sites of base damage. Accordingly, POLQ and POLβ share an overlapping function in the repair of oxidative base damage. Taken together, these results suggest a role for vertebrate POLQ in BER. PMID:17018297

  1. Percutaneous Pediculoplasty for Vertebral Hemangioma Involving the Neural Arch: A Case Report

    SciTech Connect

    Fuwa, Sokun Numaguchi, Yuji; Kobayashi, Nobuo; Saida, Yukihisa

    2008-01-15

    Vertebral hemangiomas occasionally involve the neural arch and they can be symptomatic. We report a case of symptomatic vertebral hemangioma mainly involving the unilateral neural arch which was successfully treated with percutaneous pediculoplasty using a single-needle technique.

  2. Use of retrospective data to assess ecotoxicological monitoring needs for terrestrial vertebrates residing in Atlantic coast estuaries

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cohen, J.B.; Rattner, B.A.; Golden, N.H.

    2003-01-01

    The 'Contaminant Exposure and Effects--Terrestrial Vertebrates' (CEE-TV) database contains 4,336 records of ecotoxicological information for free-ranging amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals residing in Atlantic and Florida Gulf coast estuaries and their drainages. To identify spatial data gaps, those CEE-TV records for which the specific study location were known (n=2,740) were combined with watershed and wildlife management unit boundaries using Geographic Information Systems software. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Index of Watershed Indicators (IWI), which classifies watersheds based on water quality and their vulnerability to pollution, was used to prioritize these data gaps. Of 136 watersheds in the study area, 15 that are classified by the IWI as having water quality problems or high vulnerability to pollution lacked terrestrial vertebrate ecotoxicological monitoring or research in the past decade. Older studies within some of these watersheds documented high levels of contaminants in wildlife tissues. Of 90 National Wildlife Refuge units, 42 without current data fall within watersheds of concern. Of 40 National Park units larger than 1 km2, 17 without current data fall within watersheds of concern. Issues encountered in this analysis highlighted the need for spatially and temporally replicated field monitoring programs that utilize random sampling. Without data from such studies, it will be difficult to perform unbiased assessments of regional trends in contaminant exposure and effects in terrestrial vertebrates.

  3. Endovascular Treatment of Vertebral Artery Injury during Cervical Posterior Fusion (C1 Lateral Mass Screw)

    PubMed Central

    Yoon, Kyeong-Wook; Ko, Jung-Ho; Cho, Chun-Sung; Lee, Sang-Koo; Kim, Young-Joon; Kim, Young Jin

    2013-01-01

    Summary We describe two cases of vertebral artery injury during posterior cervical fusion. We treated both cases by an endovascular technique. The vertebral artery injury may result in catastrophic situations, such as, infarction, massive blood loss and even death. Our clinical outcome was good and we prove that endovascular treatment is an effective and less invasive way to treat vertebral artery injury. PMID:24070088

  4. An aggressive vertebral hemangioma in pregnancy: a case report

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Pregnancy-related compressive myelopathy secondary to vertebral hemangioma is a rare occurrence and its treatment antepartum is rare. Case presentation A 19-year-old North African woman in her 38th week of pregnancy presented with paraplegia that progressed within 2 days after a rapidly progressive weakness of her lower limbs. Magnetic resonance imaging studies showed compression of her spinal cord in front of the fourth thoracic vertebra for suspected tuberculous spondylitis. A Caesarean section was done followed by corpectomy with a bone graft because we intraoperatively discovered a vertebral hemangioma. Pathology showed an aggressive hemangioma. Conclusion At any term of pregnancy, extensive neurological involvement which is rapidly progressive due to compression should be considered for immediate decompression. PMID:24943121

  5. Treatment of a chronic Scedosporium apiospermum vertebral osteomyelitis. Case report.

    PubMed

    German, John W; Kellie, Susan M; Pai, Manjunath P; Turner, Paul T

    2004-12-15

    Scedosporium apiospermum is a rare cause of fungal vertebral osteomyelitis that may result in chronic infection requiring multiple surgical interventions and long-term medical therapy. This case is the seventh one reported in the literature and is the first to include salvage surgery of a previous major spinal reconstruction. This report is also the first to describe the use of the new antifungal agent voriconazole. In treating this case of chronic vertebral osteomyelitis, several principles are emphasized from both the surgical and medical perspectives. From a surgical perspective, the use of salvage surgery, temporary avoidance of spinal instrumentation, and an appropriate choice of graft materials are emphasized. From a medical perspective, confirmation of the diagnosis, the need for long-term antifungal therapy, the need for long-term patient compliance, and the use of the new antifungal agent voriconazole are emphasized. Application of these principles has led to an adequate 2-year outcome.

  6. Histology and affinity of the earliest armoured vertebrate.

    PubMed

    Sansom, Ivan J; Donoghue, Philip C J; Albanesi, Guillermo

    2005-12-22

    Arandaspids are the earliest skeletonizing vertebrates known from articulated remains. Despite a wealth of data, their affinity remains questionable because they exhibit a random mixture of primitive and derived characteristics. We constrain the affinity of arandaspids by providing the first detailed characterization of their dermoskeleton which is revealed to be three-layered, composed of a basal laminated, cancellous middle and tubercular superficial layers. All three layers are composed of acellular bone but the superficial layer also includes dentine and enameloid, comprising the tubercles. As such, the composition of the arandaspid dermoskeleton is common to heterostracans and astraspids, supporting existing hypotheses of early vertebrate phylogeny. This emphasizes the peculiarity of existing interpretations of aranadaspid anatomy and there is need for a complete reappraisal of the existing anatomical data.

  7. A descending dopamine pathway conserved from basal vertebrates to mammals

    PubMed Central

    Ryczko, Dimitri; Cone, Jackson J.; Alpert, Michael H.; Goetz, Laurent; Auclair, François; Dubé, Catherine; Parent, Martin; Roitman, Mitchell F.; Alford, Simon; Dubuc, Réjean

    2016-01-01

    Dopamine neurons are classically known to modulate locomotion indirectly through ascending projections to the basal ganglia that project down to brainstem locomotor networks. Their loss in Parkinson’s disease is devastating. In lampreys, we recently showed that brainstem networks also receive direct descending dopaminergic inputs that potentiate locomotor output. Here, we provide evidence that this descending dopaminergic pathway is conserved to higher vertebrates, including mammals. In salamanders, dopamine neurons projecting to the striatum or brainstem locomotor networks were partly intermingled. Stimulation of the dopaminergic region evoked dopamine release in brainstem locomotor networks and concurrent reticulospinal activity. In rats, some dopamine neurons projecting to the striatum also innervated the pedunculopontine nucleus, a known locomotor center, and stimulation of the dopaminergic region evoked pedunculopontine dopamine release in vivo. Finally, we found dopaminergic fibers in the human pedunculopontine nucleus. The conservation of a descending dopaminergic pathway across vertebrates warrants re-evaluating dopamine’s role in locomotion. PMID:27071118

  8. Post-traumatic osteoporotic vertebral osteonecrosis treated using balloon kyphoplasty.

    PubMed

    Wang, Genlin; Yang, Huilin; Meng, Bin; Zhu, Xuesong; Zou, Jun; Gan, Minfeng; Mei, Xin; Chen, Kangwu; Tang, Tiansi

    2011-05-01

    Nineteen patients with post-traumatic osteoporotic vertebral osteonecrosis were treated using percutaneous balloon kyphoplasty. The anterior and middle vertebral heights, as well as the kyphotic angle, were measured using a standing lateral radiograph before surgery, 2 days after surgery and at the final follow-up. At the same time points, a visual analog scale and the Oswestry Disability Index were used to evaluate pain status and functional activity, respectively. The mean follow-up was 24.7 months (range: 7-36 months). Statistically significant improvements were observed between the preoperative and postoperative assessments for each evaluated measure (p<0.05). There were no statistically significant differences between the postoperative and final follow-up assessments (p>0.05). Asymptomatic cement leakage into the intervertebral disc occurred in three patients. This study suggests that balloon kyphoplasty is a safe and effective procedure for treating this disease entity.

  9. Comparative transcriptome analysis reveals vertebrate phylotypic period during organogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Irie, Naoki; Kuratani, Shigeru

    2011-01-01

    One of the central issues in evolutionary developmental biology is how we can formulate the relationships between evolutionary and developmental processes. Two major models have been proposed: the 'funnel-like' model, in which the earliest embryo shows the most conserved morphological pattern, followed by diversifying later stages, and the 'hourglass' model, in which constraints are imposed to conserve organogenesis stages, which is called the phylotypic period. Here we perform a quantitative comparative transcriptome analysis of several model vertebrate embryos and show that the pharyngula stage is most conserved, whereas earlier and later stages are rather divergent. These results allow us to predict approximate developmental timetables between different species, and indicate that pharyngula embryos have the most conserved gene expression profiles, which may be the source of the basic body plan of vertebrates. PMID:21427719

  10. Germ layer induction in ESC--following the vertebrate roadmap.

    PubMed

    Smith, Jim; Wardle, Fiona; Loose, Matt; Stanley, Ed; Patient, Roger

    2007-06-01

    Controlled differentiation of pluripotential cells takes place routinely and with great success in developing vertebrate embryos. It therefore makes sense to take note of how this is achieved and use this knowledge to control the differentiation of embryonic stem cells (ESCs). An added advantage is that the differentiated cells resulting from this process in embryos have proven functionality and longevity. This unit reviews what is known about the embryonic signals that drive differentiation in one of the most informative of the vertebrate animal models of development, the amphibian Xenopus laevis. It summarizes their identities and the extent to which their activities are dose-dependent. The unit details what is known about the transcription factor responses to these signals, describing the networks of interactions that they generate. It then discusses the target genes of these transcription factors, the effectors of the differentiated state. Finally, how these same developmental programs operate during germ layer formation in the context of ESC differentiation is summarized.

  11. Worlds within worlds: evolution of the vertebrate gut microbiota

    PubMed Central

    Ley, Ruth E.; Lozupone, Catherine A.; Hamady, Micah; Knight, Rob

    2009-01-01

    Here we use published 16S rRNA gene sequences to compare the bacterial assemblages associated with humans, other mammals, other metazoa, and free-living microbial communities spanning a range of environmental conditions. The composition of the vertebrate gut microbiota is influenced by diet, host morphology and phylogeny, and in this respect the human gut bacterial community is typical for an omnivorous primate. However, a wider view reveals that the vertebrate gut microbiota is highly differentiated from free-living communities not associated with animal body habitats. The recently initiated international Human Microbiome Project should strive to include a broad representation of humans, as well as other mammals and environmental samples: comparative analyses of microbiotas and their microbiomes are a powerful way to explore the evolutionary history of the biosphere. PMID:18794915

  12. Hemifacial spasm caused by a tortuous vertebral artery: MR demonstration.

    PubMed

    Tash, R R; Kier, E L; Chyatte, D

    1988-01-01

    Hemifacial spasm is a symptom complex comprising involuntary, painless spasms of the orbicularis muscle that may progress to involve all facial muscles. It is frequently the result of compression of the facial nerve at its root exit zone from the brain stem by vascular loops or aneurysms of the posterior inferior cerebellar artery, anterior inferior cerebellar artery, vertebral artery, or cochlear artery. Coronal and axial T1-weighted images clearly depict the course of the facial nerve from the brain stem to the internal auditory canal and its relation to the vertebrobasilar system. This case demonstrates the magnetic resonance appearance of a tortuous vertebral artery and its relationship to the facial nerve in a patient with long standing hemifacial spasm. PMID:3366969

  13. Vocal Corollary Discharge Communicates Call Duration to Vertebrate Auditory System

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Corollary discharge is essential to an animal's ability to filter self-generated from external stimuli. This includes acoustic communication, although direct demonstration of a corollary discharge that both conveys a vocal motor signal and informs the auditory system about the physical attributes of a self-generated vocalization has remained elusive for vertebrates. Here, we show the underlying synaptic activity of a neuronal vocal corollary discharge pathway in the hindbrain of a highly vocal species of fish. Neurons carrying the vocal corollary discharge are specifically adapted for the transmission of duration information, a predominant acoustic cue. The results reveal that vertebrates, like some insects, have a robust corollary discharge conveying call duration. Along with evidence for the influence of vocal duration on auditory encoding in mammals, these new findings suggest that linking vocal motor and corollary discharge pathways with pattern generating, call duration neurons is a shared network character across the animal kingdom. PMID:24285884

  14. The deoxyribonucleic acid polymerases of non-vertebrate eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    McLennan, A G; Keir, H M

    1977-01-01

    DNA-dependent DNA polymerases have now been purified from a number of invertebrate animals, protists, higher plants and fungi. In this article we review the properties of these enzymes and compare them with the better-known enzymes of vertebrate animals and prokaryotes. Three facts emerge. Firstly, plants, protists and fungi contain high-molecular-weight DNA polymerases which may be capable of categorization into two groups on the basis of their properties in vitro. Secondly, no enzyme analogous to the vertebrate polymerase-beta has yet been found in such organisms, and thirdly, many of these enzymes possess associated exonuclease activities like those of the bacterial DNA polymerases. On the basis of these findings, some tentative proposals are made about the evolution of DNA polymerases.

  15. Risk Factors for Vertebral Artery Injuries in Cervical Spine Trauma

    PubMed Central

    Dabke, Harshad V.

    2014-01-01

    Blunt cerebrovascular injuries (i.e. involvement of carotid and vertebral arteries) are increasingly being recognized in setting of cervical spine trauma/fractures and are associated with high incidence of stroke/morbidity and mortality. The incidence of vertebral artery injuries (VAI) is more common than previously thought and regular screening is seldom performed. However there exists no screening criteria and conflicting reports exists between spine and trauma literature. Many clinicians do not routinely screen/evaluate patients presenting with cervical spine trauma for potential VAI. This article provides a brief summary of existing evidence regarding the incidence of VAI in the background of cervical trauma/fractures. The type and fracture pattern that is associated with a high risk of VAI warranting mandatory screening/further work-up is discussed. A brief overview of diagnostic modalities and their respective sensitivity/specificity along with available treatment options is also summarized. PMID:25317310

  16. Vertebral artery thrombosis: a rare presentation of primary polycythaemia

    PubMed Central

    Gul, H L; Lau, S Y M; Chan-Lam, D; Ng, J-P

    2014-01-01

    Primary polycythaemia, also known as polycythaemia vera (PV), is a myeloproliferative neoplasm (MPN) which is associated with arterial and venous thrombosis and which can contribute to significant morbidity and mortality if untreated. Arterial thrombosis accounts for a large proportion of PV-related thrombotic events which may manifest as stroke and myocardial infarction. There is an abundance of literature documenting thrombosis arising in the cerebral vasculature secondary to PV. However, vertebral artery thrombosis associated with PV has not been previously described. We present a case of vertebral artery thrombosis as the presenting manifestation of PV. This case demonstrates the importance of recognising MPNs as a cause of an unusual presentation of thrombosis. PMID:24862411

  17. Vertebral artery thrombosis: a rare presentation of primary polycythaemia.

    PubMed

    Gul, H L; Lau, S Y M; Chan-Lam, D; Ng, J-P

    2014-01-01

    Primary polycythaemia, also known as polycythaemia vera (PV), is a myeloproliferative neoplasm (MPN) which is associated with arterial and venous thrombosis and which can contribute to significant morbidity and mortality if untreated. Arterial thrombosis accounts for a large proportion of PV-related thrombotic events which may manifest as stroke and myocardial infarction. There is an abundance of literature documenting thrombosis arising in the cerebral vasculature secondary to PV. However, vertebral artery thrombosis associated with PV has not been previously described. We present a case of vertebral artery thrombosis as the presenting manifestation of PV. This case demonstrates the importance of recognising MPNs as a cause of an unusual presentation of thrombosis. PMID:24862411

  18. Vertebral shape: automatic measurement with dynamically sequenced active appearance models.

    PubMed

    Roberts, M G; Cootes, T F; Adams, J E

    2005-01-01

    The shape and appearance of vertebrae on lateral dual x-ray absorptiometry (DXA) scans were statistically modelled. The spine was modelled by a sequence of overlapping triplets of vertebrae, using Active Appearance Models (AAMs). To automate vertebral morphometry, the sequence of trained models was matched to previously unseen scans. The dataset includes a significant number of pathologies. A new dynamic ordering algorithm was assessed for the model fitting sequence, using the best quality of fit achieved by multiple sub-model candidates. The accuracy of the search was improved by dynamically imposing the best quality candidate first. The results confirm the feasibility of substantially automating vertebral morphometry measurements even with fractures or noisy images.

  19. The Vertebrate Genome Annotation browser 10 years on

    PubMed Central

    Harrow, Jennifer L.; Steward, Charles A.; Frankish, Adam; Gilbert, James G.; Gonzalez, Jose M.; Loveland, Jane E.; Mudge, Jonathan; Sheppard, Dan; Thomas, Mark; Trevanion, Stephen; Wilming, Laurens G.

    2014-01-01

    The Vertebrate Genome Annotation (VEGA) database (http://vega.sanger.ac.uk), initially designed as a community resource for browsing manual annotation of the human genome project, now contains five reference genomes (human, mouse, zebrafish, pig and rat). Its introduction pages have been redesigned to enable the user to easily navigate between whole genomes and smaller multi-species haplotypic regions of interest such as the major histocompatibility complex. The VEGA browser is unique in that annotation is updated via the Human And Vertebrate Analysis aNd Annotation (HAVANA) update track every 2 weeks, allowing single gene updates to be made publicly available to the research community quickly. The user can now access different haplotypic subregions more easily, such as those from the non-obese diabetic mouse, and display them in a more intuitive way using the comparative tools. We also highlight how the user can browse manually annotated updated patches from the Genome Reference Consortium (GRC). PMID:24316575

  20. Globalisation reaches gene regulation: the case for vertebrate limb development.

    PubMed

    Zuniga, Aimée

    2005-08-01

    Analysis of key regulators of vertebrate limb development has revealed that the cis-regulatory regions controlling their expression are often located several hundred kilobases upstream of the transcription units. These far up- or down-stream cis-regulatory regions tend to reside within rather large, functionally and structurally unrelated genes. Molecular analysis is beginning to reveal the complexity of these large genomic landscapes, which control the co-expression of clusters of diverse genes by this novel type of long-range and globally acting cis-regulatory region. An increasing number of spontaneous mutations in vertebrates, including humans, are being discovered inactivating or altering such global control regions. Thereby, the functions of a seemingly distant but essential gene are disrupted rather than the closest.

  1. Vertebrate gastrointestinal fermentation: transport mechanisms for volatile fatty acids.

    PubMed

    Titus, E; Ahearn, G A

    1992-04-01

    Symbiotic microbial fermentation of plant polysaccharides can potentially provide significant levels of nutrients to host organisms in the form of volatile fatty acids (VFAs). Microbial fermentation can account for as much as 10% of maintenance energy requirements in carnivores and omnivores, and up to 80% in ruminant herbivores. In this review epithelial transport processes for the products of microbial fermentation are described in various mammalian and lower vertebrate species. Studies of transepithelial movement of VFA in vertebrate gastrointestinal systems have mostly been investigated in the mammals. In these it is widely held that the transmural movement of VFA is a concentration-dependent passive diffusion process whereby VFA is transported in the protonated form. A different model is described in this paper for carrier-mediated VFA transport, by way of anionic exchange with intracellular bicarbonate, in the intestine of a fermenting herbivorous teleost. These models for diffusive and carrier-mediated transport are compared and discussed from both physiological and experimental viewpoints.

  2. The Current Status of Vertebrate Cellular mRNA IRESs

    PubMed Central

    Jackson, Richard J.

    2013-01-01

    Internal ribosome entry sites/segments (IRESs) were first discovered over 20 years ago in picornaviruses, followed by the discovery of two other types of IRES in hepatitis C virus (HCV), and the dicistroviruses, which infect invertebrates. In the meantime, reports of IRESs in eukaryotic cellular mRNAs started to appear, and the list of such putative IRESs continues to grow to the point in which it now stands at ∼100, 80% of them in vertebrate mRNAs. Despite initial skepticism from some quarters, there now seems universal agreement that there is genuine internal ribosome entry on the viral IRESs. However, the same cannot be said for cellular mRNA IRESs, which continue to be shrouded in controversy. The aim of this article is to explain why vertebrate mRNA IRESs remain controversial, and to discuss ways in which these controversies might be resolved. PMID:23378589

  3. Automatic measurement of vertebral body deformations in CT images based on a 3D parametric model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Štern, Darko; Bürmen, Miran; Njagulj, Vesna; Likar, Boštjan; Pernuš, Franjo; Vrtovec, Tomaž

    2012-03-01

    Accurate and objective evaluation of vertebral body deformations represents an important part of the clinical diagnostics and therapy of pathological conditions affecting the spine. Although modern clinical practice is oriented towards threedimensional (3D) imaging techniques, the established methods for the evaluation of vertebral body deformations are based on measurements in two-dimensional (2D) X-ray images. In this paper, we propose a method for automatic measurement of vertebral body deformations in computed tomography (CT) images that is based on efficient modeling of the vertebral body shape with a 3D parametric model. By fitting the 3D model to the vertebral body in the image, quantitative description of normal and pathological vertebral bodies is obtained from the value of 25 parameters of the model. The evaluation of vertebral body deformations is based on the distance of the observed vertebral body from the distribution of the parameter values of normal vertebral bodies in the parametric space. The distribution is obtained from 80 normal vertebral bodies in the training data set and verified with eight normal vertebral bodies in the control data set. The statistically meaningful distance of eight pathological vertebral bodies in the study data set from the distribution of normal vertebral bodies in the parametric space shows that the parameters can be used to successfully model vertebral body deformations in 3D. The proposed method may therefore be used to assess vertebral body deformations in 3D or provide clinically meaningful observations that are not available when using 2D methods that are established in clinical practice.

  4. Pan-vertebrate comparative genomics unmasks retrovirus macroevolution.

    PubMed

    Hayward, Alexander; Cornwallis, Charlie K; Jern, Patric

    2015-01-13

    Although extensive research has demonstrated host-retrovirus microevolutionary dynamics, it has been difficult to gain a deeper understanding of the macroevolutionary patterns of host-retrovirus interactions. Here we use recent technological advances to infer broad patterns in retroviral diversity, evolution, and host-virus relationships by using a large-scale phylogenomic approach using endogenous retroviruses (ERVs). Retroviruses insert a proviral DNA copy into the host cell genome to produce new viruses. ERVs are provirus insertions in germline cells that are inherited down the host lineage and consequently present a record of past host-viral associations. By mining ERVs from 65 host genomes sampled across vertebrate diversity, we uncover a great diversity of ERVs, indicating that retroviral sequences are much more prevalent and widespread across vertebrates than previously appreciated. The majority of ERV clades that we recover do not contain known retroviruses, implying either that retroviral lineages are highly transient over evolutionary time or that a considerable number of retroviruses remain to be identified. By characterizing the distribution of ERVs, we show that no major vertebrate lineage has escaped retroviral activity and that retroviruses are extreme host generalists, having an unprecedented ability for rampant host switching among distantly related vertebrates. In addition, we examine whether the distribution of ERVs can be explained by host factors predicted to influence viral transmission and find that internal fertilization has a pronounced effect on retroviral colonization of host genomes. By capturing the mode and pattern of retroviral evolution and contrasting ERV diversity with known retroviral diversity, our study provides a cohesive framework to understand host-virus coevolution better.

  5. Vertebrate fatty acyl desaturase with Δ4 activity

    PubMed Central

    Li, Yuanyou; Monroig, Oscar; Zhang, Liang; Wang, Shuqi; Zheng, Xiaozhong; Dick, James R.; You, Cuihong; Tocher, Douglas R.

    2010-01-01

    Biosynthesis of the highly biologically active long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids, arachidonic (ARA), eicosapentaenoic (EPA), and docosahexaenoic (DHA) acids, in vertebrates requires the introduction of up to three double bonds catalyzed by fatty acyl desaturases (Fad). Synthesis of ARA is achieved by Δ6 desaturation of 18∶2n - 6 to produce 18∶3n - 6 that is elongated to 20∶3n - 6 followed by Δ5 desaturation. Synthesis of EPA from 18∶3n - 3 requires the same enzymes and pathway as for ARA, but DHA synthesis reportedly requires two further elongations, a second Δ6 desaturation and a peroxisomal chain shortening step. This paper describes cDNAs, fad1 and fad2, isolated from the herbivorous, marine teleost fish (Siganus canaliculatus) with high similarity to mammalian Fad proteins. Functional characterization of the cDNAs by heterologous expression in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae showed that Fad1 was a bifunctional Δ6/Δ5 Fad. Previously, functional dual specificity in vertebrates had been demonstrated for a zebrafish Danio rerio Fad and baboon Fad, so the present report suggests bifunctionality may be more widespread in vertebrates. However, Fad2 conferred on the yeast the ability to convert 22∶5n - 3 to DHA indicating that this S. canaliculatus gene encoded an enzyme having Δ4 Fad activity. This is a unique report of a Fad with Δ4 activity in any vertebrate species and indicates that there are two possible mechanisms for DHA biosynthesis, a direct route involving elongation of EPA to 22∶5n - 3 followed by Δ4 desaturation, as well as the more complicated pathway as described above. PMID:20826444

  6. Vertebrate seed dispersers maintain the composition of tropical forest seedbanks

    PubMed Central

    Wandrag, E. M.; Dunham, A. E.; Miller, R. H.; Rogers, H. S.

    2015-01-01

    The accumulation of seeds in the soil (the seedbank) can set the template for the early regeneration of habitats following disturbance. Seed dispersal is an important factor determining the pattern of seed rain, which affects the interactions those seeds experience. For this reason, seed dispersal should play an important role in structuring forest seedbanks, yet we know little about how that happens. Using the functional extirpation of frugivorous vertebrates from the island of Guam, together with two nearby islands (Saipan and Rota) that each support relatively intact disperser assemblages, we aimed to identify the role of vertebrate dispersers in structuring forest seedbanks. We sampled the seedbank on Guam where dispersers are absent, and compared this with the seedbank on Saipan and Rota where they are present. Almost twice as many species found in the seedbank on Guam, when compared with Saipan and Rota, had a conspecific adult within 2 m. This indicates a strong role of vertebrate dispersal in determining the identity of seeds in the seedbank. In addition, on Guam, a greater proportion of samples contained no seeds and overall species richness was lower than on Saipan. Differences in seed abundance and richness between Guam and Rota were less clear, as seedbanks on Rota also contained fewer species than Saipan, possibly due to increased post-dispersal seed predation. Our findings suggest that vertebrate seed dispersers can have a strong influence on the species composition of seedbanks. Regardless of post-dispersal processes, without dispersal, seedbanks no longer serve to increase the species pool of recruits during regeneration. PMID:26578741

  7. New insights into the vertebral Hox code of archosaurs.

    PubMed

    Böhmer, Christine; Rauhut, Oliver W M; Wörheide, Gert

    2015-01-01

    Variation in axial formulae (i.e., number and identity of vertebrae) is an important feature in the evolution of vertebrates. Vertebrae at different axial positions exhibit a region-specific morphology. Key determinants for the establishment of particular vertebral shapes are the highly conserved Hox genes. Here, we analyzed Hox gene expression in the presacral vertebral column in the Nile crocodile in order to complement and extend a previous examination in the alligator and thus establish a Hox code for the axial skeleton of crocodilians in general. The newly determined expression of HoxA-4, C-5, B-7, and B-8 all revealed a crocodilian-specific pattern. HoxA-4 and HoxC-5 characterize cervical morphologies and the latter furthermore is associated with the position of the forelimb relative to the axial skeleton. HoxB-7 and HoxB-8 map exclusively to the dorsal vertebral region. The resulting expression patterns of these two Hox genes is the first description of their exact expression in the archosaurian embryo. Our comparative analyses of the Hox code in several amniote taxa provide new evidence that evolutionary differences in the axial skeleton correspond to changes in Hox gene expression domains. We detect two general processes: (i) expansion of a Hox gene's expression domain as well as (ii) a shift of gene expression. We infer that the ancestral archosaur Hox code may have resembled that of the crocodile. In association with the evolution of morphological traits, it may have been modified to patterns that can be observed in birds.

  8. New insights into the vertebral Hox code of archosaurs.

    PubMed

    Böhmer, Christine; Rauhut, Oliver W M; Wörheide, Gert

    2015-01-01

    Variation in axial formulae (i.e., number and identity of vertebrae) is an important feature in the evolution of vertebrates. Vertebrae at different axial positions exhibit a region-specific morphology. Key determinants for the establishment of particular vertebral shapes are the highly conserved Hox genes. Here, we analyzed Hox gene expression in the presacral vertebral column in the Nile crocodile in order to complement and extend a previous examination in the alligator and thus establish a Hox code for the axial skeleton of crocodilians in general. The newly determined expression of HoxA-4, C-5, B-7, and B-8 all revealed a crocodilian-specific pattern. HoxA-4 and HoxC-5 characterize cervical morphologies and the latter furthermore is associated with the position of the forelimb relative to the axial skeleton. HoxB-7 and HoxB-8 map exclusively to the dorsal vertebral region. The resulting expression patterns of these two Hox genes is the first description of their exact expression in the archosaurian embryo. Our comparative analyses of the Hox code in several amniote taxa provide new evidence that evolutionary differences in the axial skeleton correspond to changes in Hox gene expression domains. We detect two general processes: (i) expansion of a Hox gene's expression domain as well as (ii) a shift of gene expression. We infer that the ancestral archosaur Hox code may have resembled that of the crocodile. In association with the evolution of morphological traits, it may have been modified to patterns that can be observed in birds. PMID:26372060

  9. Rapid progress on the vertebrate tree of life

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Among the greatest challenges for biology in the 21st century is inference of the tree of life. Interest in, and progress toward, this goal has increased dramatically with the growing availability of molecular sequence data. However, we have very little sense, for any major clade, of how much progress has been made in resolving a full tree of life and the scope of work that remains. A series of challenges stand in the way of completing this task but, at the most basic level, progress is limited by data: a limited fraction of the world's biodiversity has been incorporated into a phylogenetic analysis. More troubling is our poor understanding of what fraction of the tree of life is understood and how quickly research is adding to this knowledge. Here we measure the rate of progress on the tree of life for one clade of particular research interest, the vertebrates. Results Using an automated phylogenetic approach, we analyse all available molecular data for a large sample of vertebrate diversity, comprising nearly 12,000 species and 210,000 sequences. Our results indicate that progress has been rapid, increasing polynomially during the age of molecular systematics. It is also skewed, with birds and mammals receiving the most attention and marine organisms accumulating far fewer data and a slower rate of increase in phylogenetic resolution than terrestrial taxa. We analyse the contributors to this phylogenetic progress and make recommendations for future work. Conclusions Our analyses suggest that a large majority of the vertebrate tree of life will: (1) be resolved within the next few decades; (2) identify specific data collection strategies that may help to spur future progress; and (3) identify branches of the vertebrate tree of life in need of increased research effort. PMID:20211001

  10. Partitioning sources of variation in vertebrate species richness

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Boone, R.B.; Krohn, W.B.

    2000-01-01

    Aim: To explore biogeographic patterns of terrestrial vertebrates in Maine, USA using techniques that would describe local and spatial correlations with the environment. Location: Maine, USA. Methods: We delineated the ranges within Maine (86,156 km2) of 275 species using literature and expert review. Ranges were combined into species richness maps, and compared to geomorphology, climate, and woody plant distributions. Methods were adapted that compared richness of all vertebrate classes to each environmental correlate, rather than assessing a single explanatory theory. We partitioned variation in species richness into components using tree and multiple linear regression. Methods were used that allowed for useful comparisons between tree and linear regression results. For both methods we partitioned variation into broad-scale (spatially autocorrelated) and fine-scale (spatially uncorrelated) explained and unexplained components. By partitioning variance, and using both tree and linear regression in analyses, we explored the degree of variation in species richness for each vertebrate group that Could be explained by the relative contribution of each environmental variable. Results: In tree regression, climate variation explained richness better (92% of mean deviance explained for all species) than woody plant variation (87%) and geomorphology (86%). Reptiles were highly correlated with environmental variation (93%), followed by mammals, amphibians, and birds (each with 84-82% deviance explained). In multiple linear regression, climate was most closely associated with total vertebrate richness (78%), followed by woody plants (67%) and geomorphology (56%). Again, reptiles were closely correlated with the environment (95%), followed by mammals (73%), amphibians (63%) and birds (57%). Main conclusions: Comparing variation explained using tree and multiple linear regression quantified the importance of nonlinear relationships and local interactions between species

  11. Differential use of salmon by vertebrate consumers: implications for conservation.

    PubMed

    Levi, Taal; Wheat, Rachel E; Allen, Jennifer M; Wilmers, Christopher C

    2015-01-01

    Salmon and other anadromous fish are consumed by vertebrates with distinct life history strategies to capitalize on this ephemeral pulse of resource availability. Depending on the timing of salmon arrival, this resource may be in surplus to the needs of vertebrate consumers if, for instance, their populations are limited by food availability during other times of year. However, the life history of some consumers enables more efficient exploitation of these ephemeral resources. Bears can deposit fat and then hibernate to avoid winter food scarcity, and highly mobile consumers such as eagles, gulls, and other birds can migrate to access asynchronous pulses of salmon availability. We used camera traps on pink, chum, and sockeye salmon spawning grounds with various run times and stream morphologies, and on individual salmon carcasses, to discern potentially different use patterns among consumers. Wildlife use of salmon was highly heterogeneous. Ravens were the only avian consumer that fed heavily on pink salmon in small streams. Eagles and gulls did not feed on early pink salmon runs in streams, and only moderately at early sockeye runs, but were the dominant consumers at late chum salmon runs, particularly on expansive river flats. Brown bears used all salmon resources far more than other terrestrial vertebrates. Notably, black bears were not observed on salmon spawning grounds despite being the most frequently observed vertebrate on roads and trails. From a conservation and management perspective, all salmon species and stream morphologies are used extensively by bears, but salmon spawning late in the year are disproportionately important to eagles and other highly mobile species that are seasonally limited by winter food availability. PMID:26339539

  12. Double Cones as a Basis for Polarization Sensitivity in Vertebrates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rowe, Manoel

    1995-01-01

    Over the course of the past 50 years there has been an increasing number of claims that certain vertebrates are sensitive to the linear polarization state of visible radiation. However, the mechanism(s) that mediates this polarization sensitivity remains elusive at the present time. The retinas of most vertebrates contain anatomical structures loosely referred to as double cones--composite entities constituted by the apposition of two independently developed, diurnally active photoreceptors. The significance of this apposition for visual function also remains elusive. It is possible that double cones mediate polarization sensitivity as a consequence of geometric birefringence; light polarized parallel to the axis joining the centers of the two halves of a double cone can potentially stimulate the receptors more strongly than light polarized in the direction perpendicular to both that axis and the normal axis of light propagation down the length of the double cone. The feasibility of this mechanism for polarization sensitivity has been examined here with specific reference to the retina of a representative animal, the green sunfish (Lepomis cyanellus). Transmission electron micrographs of thin sections from a sunfish retina were analyzed in order to develop simple models of waveguiding down the long axis of a sunfish double cone. The results of the computations indicate that the mechanism is feasible only if there are refractive index gradients in the photoreceptors of sunfish. Isolated receptors were thus examined with scanning microinterferometry to demonstrate the presence of such gradients. In the course of the investigation, the literature pertaining to vertebrate polarization sensitivity and retinal anatomy were reviewed to delimit the generality of the conclusions drawn from sunfish photoreceptors. As a result of this analysis, it should be concluded that much future research is needed to clarify what (if any) role optical polarization plays in the sensory

  13. Comparative anatomy of the vestibular nuclear complex in submammalian vertebrates.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mehler, W. R.

    1972-01-01

    A synopsis of the literature on the natural history of the vestibular nuclear complex (VNC) in lower vertebrates is presented in an attempt to assess the knowledge available. The review discloses that there is considerable descriptive information that is widely dispersed in the literature. However, information about the topology, number, and cellular composition of the cell groups that compose the VNC is sketchy. Major cytological and hodological information is still needed to establish which parts of the VNC actually are homologous.

  14. Tour of a labyrinth: exploring the vertebrate nose.

    PubMed

    Van Valkenburgh, Blaire; Smith, Timothy D; Craven, Brent A

    2014-11-01

    This special issue of The Anatomical Record is the outcome of a symposium entitled "Inside the Vertebrate Nose: Evolution, Structure and Function." The skeletal framework of the nasal cavity is a complicated structure that often houses sinuses and comprises an internal skeleton of bone or cartilage that can vary greatly in architecture among species. The nose serves multiple functions, including olfaction and respiratory air-conditioning, and its morphology is constrained by evolution, development, and conflicting demands on cranial space, such as enlarged orbits. The nasal cavity of vertebrates has received much more attention in the last decade due to the emergence of nondestructive methods that allow improved visualization of the internal anatomy of the skull, such as high-resolution x-ray computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging. The 17 articles included here represent a broad range of investigators, from paleontologists to engineers, who approach the nose from different perspectives. Key topics include the evolution and development of the nose, its comparative anatomy and function, and airflow through the nasal cavity of individual species. In addition, this special issue includes review articles on anatomical reduction of the olfactory apparatus in both cetaceans and primates (the vomeronasal system), as well as the molecular biology of olfaction in vertebrates. Together these articles provide an expansive summary of our current understanding of vertebrate nasal anatomy and function. In this introduction, we provide background information and an overview of each of the three primary topics, and place each article within the context of previous research and the major challenges that lie ahead.

  15. Metabolism of Vertebrate Amino Sugars with N-Glycolyl Groups

    PubMed Central

    Davies, Leela R. L.; Pearce, Oliver M. T.; Tessier, Matthew B.; Assar, Siavash; Smutova, Victoria; Pajunen, Maria; Sumida, Mizuki; Sato, Chihiro; Kitajima, Ken; Finne, Jukka; Gagneux, Pascal; Pshezhetsky, Alexey; Woods, Robert; Varki, Ajit

    2012-01-01

    The sialic acid (Sia) N-acetylneuraminic acid (Neu5Ac) and its hydroxylated derivative N-glycolylneuraminic acid (Neu5Gc) differ by one oxygen atom. CMP-Neu5Gc is synthesized from CMP-Neu5Ac, with Neu5Gc representing a highly variable fraction of total Sias in various tissues and among different species. The exception may be the brain, where Neu5Ac is abundant and Neu5Gc is reported to be rare. Here, we confirm this unusual pattern and its evolutionary conservation in additional samples from various species, concluding that brain Neu5Gc expression has been maintained at extremely low levels over hundreds of millions of years of vertebrate evolution. Most explanations for this pattern do not require maintaining neural Neu5Gc at such low levels. We hypothesized that resistance of α2–8-linked Neu5Gc to vertebrate sialidases is the detrimental effect requiring the relative absence of Neu5Gc from brain. This linkage is prominent in polysialic acid (polySia), a molecule with critical roles in vertebrate neural development. We show that Neu5Gc is incorporated into neural polySia and does not cause in vitro toxicity. Synthetic polymers of Neu5Ac and Neu5Gc showed that mammalian and bacterial sialidases are much less able to hydrolyze α2–8-linked Neu5Gc at the nonreducing terminus. Notably, this difference was not seen with acid-catalyzed hydrolysis of polySias. Molecular dynamics modeling indicates that differences in the three-dimensional conformation of terminal saccharides may partly explain reduced enzymatic activity. In keeping with this, polymers of N-propionylneuraminic acid are sensitive to sialidases. Resistance of Neu5Gc-containing polySia to sialidases provides a potential explanation for the rarity of Neu5Gc in the vertebrate brain. PMID:22692207

  16. Origins, Innovations, and Diversification of Suction Feeding in Vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Wainwright, Peter C; McGee, Matthew D; Longo, Sarah J; Hernandez, L Patricia

    2015-07-01

    We review the origins, prominent innovations, and major patterns of diversification in suction feeding by vertebrates. Non-vertebrate chordates and larval lamprey suspension-feed by capturing small particles in pharyngeal mucous. In most of these lineages the gentle flows that transport particles are generated by buccal cilia, although larval lamprey and thaliacean urochordates have independently evolved a weak buccal pump to generate an oscillating flow of water that is powered by elastic recovery of the pharynx following compression by buccal muscles. The evolution of jaws and the hyoid facilitated powerful buccal expansion and high-performance suction feeding as found today throughout aquatic vertebrates. We highlight three major innovations in suction feeding. Most vertebrate suction feeders have mechanisms that occlude the corners of the open mouth during feeding. This produces a planar opening that is often nearly circular in shape. Both features contribute to efficient flow of water into the mouth and help direct the flow to the area directly in front of the mouth's aperture. Among several functions that have been identified for protrusion of the upper jaw, is an increase in the hydrodynamic forces that suction feeders exert on their prey. Protrusion of the upper jaw has evolved five times in ray-finned fishes, including in two of the most successful teleost radiations, cypriniforms and acanthomorphs, and is found in about 60% of living teleost species. Diversification of the mechanisms of suction feeding and of feeding behavior reveals that suction feeders with high capacity for suction rarely approach their prey rapidly, while slender-bodied predators with low capacity for suction show the full range of attack speeds. We hypothesize that a dominant axis of diversification among suction feeders involves a trade-off between the forces that are exerted on prey and the volume of water that is ingested. PMID:25920508

  17. Differential use of salmon by vertebrate consumers: implications for conservation

    PubMed Central

    Wheat, Rachel E.; Allen, Jennifer M.; Wilmers, Christopher C.

    2015-01-01

    Salmon and other anadromous fish are consumed by vertebrates with distinct life history strategies to capitalize on this ephemeral pulse of resource availability. Depending on the timing of salmon arrival, this resource may be in surplus to the needs of vertebrate consumers if, for instance, their populations are limited by food availability during other times of year. However, the life history of some consumers enables more efficient exploitation of these ephemeral resources. Bears can deposit fat and then hibernate to avoid winter food scarcity, and highly mobile consumers such as eagles, gulls, and other birds can migrate to access asynchronous pulses of salmon availability. We used camera traps on pink, chum, and sockeye salmon spawning grounds with various run times and stream morphologies, and on individual salmon carcasses, to discern potentially different use patterns among consumers. Wildlife use of salmon was highly heterogeneous. Ravens were the only avian consumer that fed heavily on pink salmon in small streams. Eagles and gulls did not feed on early pink salmon runs in streams, and only moderately at early sockeye runs, but were the dominant consumers at late chum salmon runs, particularly on expansive river flats. Brown bears used all salmon resources far more than other terrestrial vertebrates. Notably, black bears were not observed on salmon spawning grounds despite being the most frequently observed vertebrate on roads and trails. From a conservation and management perspective, all salmon species and stream morphologies are used extensively by bears, but salmon spawning late in the year are disproportionately important to eagles and other highly mobile species that are seasonally limited by winter food availability. PMID:26339539

  18. Pan-vertebrate comparative genomics unmasks retrovirus macroevolution

    PubMed Central

    Hayward, Alexander; Cornwallis, Charlie K.; Jern, Patric

    2015-01-01

    Although extensive research has demonstrated host-retrovirus microevolutionary dynamics, it has been difficult to gain a deeper understanding of the macroevolutionary patterns of host–retrovirus interactions. Here we use recent technological advances to infer broad patterns in retroviral diversity, evolution, and host–virus relationships by using a large-scale phylogenomic approach using endogenous retroviruses (ERVs). Retroviruses insert a proviral DNA copy into the host cell genome to produce new viruses. ERVs are provirus insertions in germline cells that are inherited down the host lineage and consequently present a record of past host–viral associations. By mining ERVs from 65 host genomes sampled across vertebrate diversity, we uncover a great diversity of ERVs, indicating that retroviral sequences are much more prevalent and widespread across vertebrates than previously appreciated. The majority of ERV clades that we recover do not contain known retroviruses, implying either that retroviral lineages are highly transient over evolutionary time or that a considerable number of retroviruses remain to be identified. By characterizing the distribution of ERVs, we show that no major vertebrate lineage has escaped retroviral activity and that retroviruses are extreme host generalists, having an unprecedented ability for rampant host switching among distantly related vertebrates. In addition, we examine whether the distribution of ERVs can be explained by host factors predicted to influence viral transmission and find that internal fertilization has a pronounced effect on retroviral colonization of host genomes. By capturing the mode and pattern of retroviral evolution and contrasting ERV diversity with known retroviral diversity, our study provides a cohesive framework to understand host–virus coevolution better. PMID:25535393

  19. Tour of a labyrinth: exploring the vertebrate nose.

    PubMed

    Van Valkenburgh, Blaire; Smith, Timothy D; Craven, Brent A

    2014-11-01

    This special issue of The Anatomical Record is the outcome of a symposium entitled "Inside the Vertebrate Nose: Evolution, Structure and Function." The skeletal framework of the nasal cavity is a complicated structure that often houses sinuses and comprises an internal skeleton of bone or cartilage that can vary greatly in architecture among species. The nose serves multiple functions, including olfaction and respiratory air-conditioning, and its morphology is constrained by evolution, development, and conflicting demands on cranial space, such as enlarged orbits. The nasal cavity of vertebrates has received much more attention in the last decade due to the emergence of nondestructive methods that allow improved visualization of the internal anatomy of the skull, such as high-resolution x-ray computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging. The 17 articles included here represent a broad range of investigators, from paleontologists to engineers, who approach the nose from different perspectives. Key topics include the evolution and development of the nose, its comparative anatomy and function, and airflow through the nasal cavity of individual species. In addition, this special issue includes review articles on anatomical reduction of the olfactory apparatus in both cetaceans and primates (the vomeronasal system), as well as the molecular biology of olfaction in vertebrates. Together these articles provide an expansive summary of our current understanding of vertebrate nasal anatomy and function. In this introduction, we provide background information and an overview of each of the three primary topics, and place each article within the context of previous research and the major challenges that lie ahead. PMID:25312359

  20. Differential use of salmon by vertebrate consumers: implications for conservation.

    PubMed

    Levi, Taal; Wheat, Rachel E; Allen, Jennifer M; Wilmers, Christopher C

    2015-01-01

    Salmon and other anadromous fish are consumed by vertebrates with distinct life history strategies to capitalize on this ephemeral pulse of resource availability. Depending on the timing of salmon arrival, this resource may be in surplus to the needs of vertebrate consumers if, for instance, their populations are limited by food availability during other times of year. However, the life history of some consumers enables more efficient exploitation of these ephemeral resources. Bears can deposit fat and then hibernate to avoid winter food scarcity, and highly mobile consumers such as eagles, gulls, and other birds can migrate to access asynchronous pulses of salmon availability. We used camera traps on pink, chum, and sockeye salmon spawning grounds with various run times and stream morphologies, and on individual salmon carcasses, to discern potentially different use patterns among consumers. Wildlife use of salmon was highly heterogeneous. Ravens were the only avian consumer that fed heavily on pink salmon in small streams. Eagles and gulls did not feed on early pink salmon runs in streams, and only moderately at early sockeye runs, but were the dominant consumers at late chum salmon runs, particularly on expansive river flats. Brown bears used all salmon resources far more than other terrestrial vertebrates. Notably, black bears were not observed on salmon spawning grounds despite being the most frequently observed vertebrate on roads and trails. From a conservation and management perspective, all salmon species and stream morphologies are used extensively by bears, but salmon spawning late in the year are disproportionately important to eagles and other highly mobile species that are seasonally limited by winter food availability.

  1. Vertebrate seed dispersers maintain the composition of tropical forest seedbanks.

    PubMed

    Wandrag, E M; Dunham, A E; Miller, R H; Rogers, H S

    2015-11-16

    The accumulation of seeds in the soil (the seedbank) can set the template for the early regeneration of habitats following disturbance. Seed dispersal is an important factor determining the pattern of seed rain, which affects the interactions those seeds experience. For this reason, seed dispersal should play an important role in structuring forest seedbanks, yet we know little about how that happens. Using the functional extirpation of frugivorous vertebrates from the island of Guam, together with two nearby islands (Saipan and Rota) that each support relatively intact disperser assemblages, we aimed to identify the role of vertebrate dispersers in structuring forest seedbanks. We sampled the seedbank on Guam where dispersers are absent, and compared this with the seedbank on Saipan and Rota where they are present. Almost twice as many species found in the seedbank on Guam, when compared with Saipan and Rota, had a conspecific adult within 2 m. This indicates a strong role of vertebrate dispersal in determining the identity of seeds in the seedbank. In addition, on Guam, a greater proportion of samples contained no seeds and overall species richness was lower than on Saipan. Differences in seed abundance and richness between Guam and Rota were less clear, as seedbanks on Rota also contained fewer species than Saipan, possibly due to increased post-dispersal seed predation. Our findings suggest that vertebrate seed dispersers can have a strong influence on the species composition of seedbanks. Regardless of post-dispersal processes, without dispersal, seedbanks no longer serve to increase the species pool of recruits during regeneration.

  2. Evolution and development of interhemispheric connections in the vertebrate forebrain

    PubMed Central

    Suárez, Rodrigo; Gobius, Ilan; Richards, Linda J.

    2014-01-01

    Axonal connections between the left and right sides of the brain are crucial for bilateral integration of lateralized sensory, motor, and associative functions. Throughout vertebrate species, forebrain commissures share a conserved developmental plan, a similar position relative to each other within the brain and similar patterns of connectivity. However, major events in the evolution of the vertebrate brain, such as the expansion of the telencephalon in tetrapods and the origin of the six-layered isocortex in mammals, resulted in the emergence and diversification of new commissural routes. These new interhemispheric connections include the pallial commissure, which appeared in the ancestors of tetrapods and connects the left and right sides of the medial pallium (hippocampus in mammals), and the corpus callosum, which is exclusive to eutherian (placental) mammals and connects both isocortical hemispheres. A comparative analysis of commissural systems in vertebrates reveals that the emergence of new commissural routes may have involved co-option of developmental mechanisms and anatomical substrates of preexistent commissural pathways. One of the embryonic regions of interest for studying these processes is the commissural plate, a portion of the early telencephalic midline that provides molecular specification and a cellular scaffold for the development of commissural axons. Further investigations into these embryonic processes in carefully selected species will provide insights not only into the mechanisms driving commissural evolution, but also regarding more general biological problems such as the role of developmental plasticity in evolutionary change. PMID:25071525

  3. ELF communications system ecological monitoring program. Small vertebrate studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beaver, Donald L.; Hill, Richard W.; Hill, Susan D.

    1994-10-01

    The U.S. Navy has completed a program monitoring flora, fauna, and ecological relationships tor possible effects from electromagnetic fields produced by its Extremely Low Frequency (ELF) Communications System. This report documents studies of small mammals and nesting birds conducted near its transmitting antenna in Michigan. From 1982 through 1993 researchers from the Michigan State University (MSU) monitored organismal and population aspects of vertebrates in areas near (treatment) and far (control) from the Michigan antenna. They examined the reproductive, developmental, behavioral, and physiological characteristics of representative vertebrate species. Studied species were the deer mouse, chipmunk, tree swallow, and blackcapped - chickadee. Investigators had also monitored ecological aspects of the mammalian community until 1988 when this study element was discontinued due to highly variable results. In a different project, ornithologists from the University of Minnesota-Duluth monitored the ecological characteristics of the bird community near the ELF System. The MSU research team used several statistical tests to examine data; however, nested analysis of variance was the most often used test. Based on the results of their study, they conclude that the EM fields produced by the Naval Radio Transmitting Facility-Republic, Michigan did not affect small vertebrates.

  4. Vertebrate diet decreases winter torpor use in a desert marsupial

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pavey, Chris R.; Burwell, Chris J.; Körtner, Gerhard; Geiser, Fritz

    2009-06-01

    One of the energetic benefits of daily torpor over prolonged hibernation is that it enables animals to regularly forage and, therefore, replenish food reserves between bouts of torpor. However, little is known about the diet of predators undergoing torpor or whether differences in prey composition among individuals influence torpor characteristics. Here, we test the hypothesis that prey composition affects winter torpor use and patterns of a population of carnivorous marsupial, the brush-tailed mulgara ( Dasycercus blythi), in the Great Sandy Desert, Australia. Mulgaras in the study population captured a wide range of prey including vertebrates (mammals, reptiles, birds), seven insect orders, spiders and centipedes. The proportion of vertebrates in the diet was negatively correlated with both frequency of torpor use and maximum bout duration. This variation in torpor use with diet can be explained by the higher energetic content of vertebrates as well as their larger size. Even assuming uniform intake of prey biomass among individuals, those that subsisted on an invertebrate-dominated diet during winter apparently suffered energetic shortages as a result of the scarcity of invertebrate taxa with high energy content (such as insect larvae). Our study is the first to demonstrate a link between diet composition and daily torpor use in a free-ranging mammal.

  5. Atypical oculopalatal tremor as the presentation of vertebral artery dolichoectasia

    PubMed Central

    Vanikieti, Kavin; Cheecharoen, Piyaphon; Jindahra, Panitha; Lueangaram, Sirin; Padungkiatsagul, Tanyatuth

    2016-01-01

    Vertebrobasilar dolichoectasia (VBD) is a rare dilative arteriopathy defined as elongation or widening of the intracranial vertebral and/or basilar arteries. The prevalence ranges from 0.06% to 5.8%. The majority of VBDs are asymptomatic. Downbeat nystagmus has been reported as a component of an infrequent ocular movement disorder in VBD. Nevertheless, oculopalatal tremor (OPT), delayed sequelae of a brainstem lesion, has never been demonstrated in VBD cases. Synchronized rhythmic involuntary contractions of the soft palate with an ocular pendular nystagmus, predominantly vertical pendular nystagmus, are the hallmark presentation. Our case demonstrated a 50-year-old female who presented with 3-month history of oscillopsia. Examination showed binocular conjugate torsional jerk nystagmus simultaneous with a contraction of the soft palate, defined as an atypical OPT, resulting from dolichoectatic left vertebral artery compressing on medulla, demonstrated by magnetic resonance imaging. Bilateral conjugate torsional jerk nystagmus simultaneous with palatal tremor, considering as an atypical OPT, should be included as one of the symptomatic presentations of vertebral artery dolichoectasia in spite of its rarity.

  6. Atypical oculopalatal tremor as the presentation of vertebral artery dolichoectasia.

    PubMed

    Vanikieti, Kavin; Cheecharoen, Piyaphon; Jindahra, Panitha; Lueangaram, Sirin; Padungkiatsagul, Tanyatuth

    2016-01-01

    Vertebrobasilar dolichoectasia (VBD) is a rare dilative arteriopathy defined as elongation or widening of the intracranial vertebral and/or basilar arteries. The prevalence ranges from 0.06% to 5.8%. The majority of VBDs are asymptomatic. Downbeat nystagmus has been reported as a component of an infrequent ocular movement disorder in VBD. Nevertheless, oculopalatal tremor (OPT), delayed sequelae of a brainstem lesion, has never been demonstrated in VBD cases. Synchronized rhythmic involuntary contractions of the soft palate with an ocular pendular nystagmus, predominantly vertical pendular nystagmus, are the hallmark presentation. Our case demonstrated a 50-year-old female who presented with 3-month history of oscillopsia. Examination showed binocular conjugate torsional jerk nystagmus simultaneous with a contraction of the soft palate, defined as an atypical OPT, resulting from dolichoectatic left vertebral artery compressing on medulla, demonstrated by magnetic resonance imaging. Bilateral conjugate torsional jerk nystagmus simultaneous with palatal tremor, considering as an atypical OPT, should be included as one of the symptomatic presentations of vertebral artery dolichoectasia in spite of its rarity. PMID:27660495

  7. Cement augmentation for vertebral fractures in patients with multiple myeloma.

    PubMed

    Majeed, Haroon; Bommireddy, Rajendranath; Klezl, Zdenek

    2014-12-01

    Objective of our study was to assess the outcome of cement augmentation in patients with multiple myeloma. We reviewed 12 patients with 48 vertebral fractures. Mean age was 62.5 years. Average length of follow-up was 27.5 months. Expected survival was less than 12 months in 2 patients and more than 12 months in the remaining patients. After surgery mean survival was 32.5 months. Mean correction in vertebral angle was 3.6°. Karnofsky score was more than 70 in 5 patients, 50-70 in 6 and less than 50 in 1 patient preoperatively, while it was more than 70 in all patients postoperatively. Preoperative mean ODI was 72%. After surgery it was 46% at 6 weeks and 14% at 12 months. All patients reported improvement in their pain status after surgery. Cement augmentation is a safe and effective way of treating symptoms of multiple myeloma, which occur due to vertebral metastases. It results in excellent pain control and improvement in quality of life. PMID:26280729

  8. Evolutionary aspects of self- and world consciousness in vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Fabbro, Franco; Aglioti, Salvatore M.; Bergamasco, Massimo; Clarici, Andrea; Panksepp, Jaak

    2015-01-01

    Although most aspects of world and self-consciousness are inherently subjective, neuroscience studies in humans and non-human animals provide correlational and causative indices of specific links between brain activity and representation of the self and the world. In this article we review neuroanatomic, neurophysiological and neuropsychological data supporting the hypothesis that different levels of self and world representation in vertebrates rely upon (i) a “basal” subcortical system that includes brainstem, hypothalamus and central thalamic nuclei and that may underpin the primary (or anoetic) consciousness likely present in all vertebrates; and (ii) a forebrain system that include the medial and lateral structures of the cerebral hemispheres and may sustain the most sophisticated forms of consciousness [e.g., noetic (knowledge based) and autonoetic, reflective knowledge]. We posit a mutual, bidirectional functional influence between these two major brain circuits. We conclude that basic aspects of consciousness like primary self and core self (based on anoetic and noetic consciousness) are present in many species of vertebrates and that, even self-consciousness (autonoetic consciousness) does not seem to be a prerogative of humans and of some non-human primates but may, to a certain extent, be present in some other mammals and birds PMID:25859205

  9. Identification of Novel Long Noncoding RNAs Underlying Vertebrate Cardiovascular Development

    PubMed Central

    Benner, Christopher; Hishida, Tomoaki; Nguyen, Thai B.; Reddy, Pradeep; Nivet, Emmanuel; Krause, Marie N.; Nelles, David A.; Esteban, Concepcion Rodriguez; Campistol, Josep M.; Yeo, Gene W.; Belmonte, Juan Carlos Izpisua

    2015-01-01

    Background Long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) have emerged as critical epigenetic regulators with important functions in development and disease. Here, we sought to identify and functionally characterize novel lncRNAs critical for vertebrate development. Methods and Results By relying on human pluripotent stem cell differentiation models, we investigated lncRNAs differentially regulated at key steps during human cardiovascular development with a special focus on vascular endothelial cells. RNA sequencing led to the generation of large data sets that serve as a gene expression roadmap highlighting gene expression changes during human pluripotent cell differentiation. Stage-specific analyses led to the identification of 3 previously uncharacterized lncRNAs, TERMINATOR, ALIEN, and PUNISHER, specifically expressed in undifferentiated pluripotent stem cells, cardiovascular progenitors, and differentiated endothelial cells, respectively. Functional characterization, including localization studies, dynamic expression analyses, epigenetic modification monitoring, and knockdown experiments in lower vertebrates, as well as murine embryos and human cells, confirmed a critical role for each lncRNA specific for each analyzed developmental stage. Conclusions We have identified and functionally characterized 3 novel lncRNAs involved in vertebrate and human cardiovascular development, and we provide a comprehensive transcriptomic roadmap that sheds new light on the molecular mechanisms underlying human embryonic development, mesodermal commitment, and cardiovascular specification. PMID:25739401

  10. Reproductive costs in terrestrial male vertebrates: insights from bird studies

    PubMed Central

    Gamelon, Marlène; Sæther, Bernt-Erik

    2016-01-01

    Reproduction requires resources that cannot be allocated to other functions resulting in direct reproductive costs (i.e. trade-offs between current reproduction and subsequent survival/reproduction). In wild vertebrates, direct reproductive costs have been widely described in females, but their occurrence in males remains to be explored. To fill this gap, we gathered 53 studies on 48 species testing direct reproductive costs in male vertebrates. We found a trade-off between current reproduction and subsequent performances in 29% of the species and in every clade. As 73% of the studied species are birds, we focused on that clade to investigate whether such trade-offs are associated with (i) levels of paternal care, (ii) polygyny or (iii) pace of life. More precisely for this third question, it is expected that fast species (i.e. short lifespan, early maturity, high fecundity) pay a cost in terms of survival, whereas slow species (with opposite characteristics) do so in terms of fecundity. Our findings tend to support this hypothesis. Finally, we pointed out the potential confounding effects that should be accounted for when investigating reproductive costs in males and strongly encourage the investigation of such costs in more clades to understand to what extent our results are relevant for other vertebrates. PMID:26791619

  11. Evolution of oxytocin pathways in the brain of vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Knobloch, H Sophie; Grinevich, Valery

    2014-01-01

    The central oxytocin system transformed tremendously during the evolution, thereby adapting to the expanding properties of species. In more basal vertebrates (paraphyletic taxon Anamnia, which includes agnathans, fish and amphibians), magnocellular neurosecretory neurons producing homologs of oxytocin reside in the wall of the third ventricle of the hypothalamus composing a single hypothalamic structure, the preoptic nucleus. This nucleus further diverged in advanced vertebrates (monophyletic taxon Amniota, which includes reptiles, birds, and mammals) into the paraventricular and supraoptic nuclei with accessory nuclei (AN) between them. The individual magnocellular neurons underwent a process of transformation from primitive uni- or bipolar neurons into highly differentiated neurons. Due to these microanatomical and cytological changes, the ancient release modes of oxytocin into the cerebrospinal fluid were largely replaced by vascular release. However, the most fascinating feature of the progressive transformations of the oxytocin system has been the expansion of oxytocin axonal projections to forebrain regions. In the present review we provide a background on these evolutionary advancements. Furthermore, we draw attention to the non-synaptic axonal release in small and defined brain regions with the aim to clearly distinguish this way of oxytocin action from the classical synaptic transmission on one side and from dendritic release followed by a global diffusion on the other side. Finally, we will summarize the effects of oxytocin and its homologs on pro-social reproductive behaviors in representatives of the phylogenetic tree and will propose anatomically plausible pathways of oxytocin release contributing to these behaviors in basal vertebrates and amniots. PMID:24592219

  12. Early evolution of vertebrate photoreception: lessons from lampreys and lungfishes.

    PubMed

    Collin, Shaun P

    2009-03-01

    Lampreys (Agnatha) and lungfish (Dipnoi) are representatives of the earliest and the intermediate stages in vertebrate evolution, respectively, and survived in the Cambrian (approximately 540 mA, lampreys) and Devonian (approximately 400 mA, lungfishes) Periods. The unique phylogenetic position of these two groups presents us with an exciting opportunity to understand life in ancient times and to begin to trace the evolution of vision and photoreception in vertebrates. Using a multidisciplinary approach employing anatomical and molecular techniques, the evolution of photoreception is explored in these extant, living fossils to predict the environmental lighting conditions to which our vertebrate ancestors were exposed. Contrary to expectations, the retinae of the southern hemisphere lamprey (Geotria australis Gray, 1851) and the Australian lungfish (Neoceratodus forsteri Krefft, 1870) are far from "primitive," each possessing five types of photoreceptors, many with spectral filters for tuning the light. Detailed ultrastructural analysis reveals that all five receptor types in G. australis are cone-like, whereas N. forsteri possesses four cone types and a single type of rod. Each receptor type also contains a different visual pigment (opsin gene); that is, LWS, SWS1, SWS2, RhA and RhB in G. australis and LWS, SWS1, SWS2, Rh1 and Rh2 in N. forsteri, all of which are expressed within the retina and are sensitive to different parts of the electromagnetic spectrum, providing the potential for pentachromatic and tetrachromatic color vision, respectively.

  13. Evolution of oxytocin pathways in the brain of vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Knobloch, H. Sophie; Grinevich, Valery

    2014-01-01

    The central oxytocin system transformed tremendously during the evolution, thereby adapting to the expanding properties of species. In more basal vertebrates (paraphyletic taxon Anamnia, which includes agnathans, fish and amphibians), magnocellular neurosecretory neurons producing homologs of oxytocin reside in the wall of the third ventricle of the hypothalamus composing a single hypothalamic structure, the preoptic nucleus. This nucleus further diverged in advanced vertebrates (monophyletic taxon Amniota, which includes reptiles, birds, and mammals) into the paraventricular and supraoptic nuclei with accessory nuclei (AN) between them. The individual magnocellular neurons underwent a process of transformation from primitive uni- or bipolar neurons into highly differentiated neurons. Due to these microanatomical and cytological changes, the ancient release modes of oxytocin into the cerebrospinal fluid were largely replaced by vascular release. However, the most fascinating feature of the progressive transformations of the oxytocin system has been the expansion of oxytocin axonal projections to forebrain regions. In the present review we provide a background on these evolutionary advancements. Furthermore, we draw attention to the non-synaptic axonal release in small and defined brain regions with the aim to clearly distinguish this way of oxytocin action from the classical synaptic transmission on one side and from dendritic release followed by a global diffusion on the other side. Finally, we will summarize the effects of oxytocin and its homologs on pro-social reproductive behaviors in representatives of the phylogenetic tree and will propose anatomically plausible pathways of oxytocin release contributing to these behaviors in basal vertebrates and amniots. PMID:24592219

  14. Homology of insect corpora allata and vertebrate adenohypophysis?

    PubMed

    Wirmer, Andrea; Bradler, Sven; Heinrich, Ralf

    2012-09-01

    Animal species of various phyla possess neuroendocrine glands whose hormonal products regulate developmental and physiological mechanisms and directly impact behavior. Two examples, the corpora allata of insects and the vertebrate adenohypophysis have previously been regarded as analogous tissues that evolved independently from diffuse epidermal nerve nets of early metazoans. More recent developmental and functional studies accumulated evidence suggesting that the bilaterian nervous systems including its modern parts (e.g. pallium or cortex and mushroom bodies) and its neuroendocrine appendages (that are considered to be more ancient structures) possess a single evolutionary origin. The corpora allata of insects and the vertebrate adenohypophysis share a number of characteristics in respect of morphology, control of hormone release by RFamides, metabolites produced by closely related cytochrome P450 enzymes and gene expression during embryonic development. This review incorporates latest findings into an extensive description of similarities between insect corpora allata and vertebrate adenohypophysis that should encourage further studies about the onto- and phylogenetic origin of these neuroendocrine glands.

  15. Molecular synapomorphies resolve evolutionary relationships of extant jawed vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Venkatesh, Byrappa; Erdmann, Mark V.; Brenner, Sydney

    2001-01-01

    The evolutionary relationships of gnathostomes (jawed vertebrates), which comprise chondrichthyans (cartilaginous fishes), lobe-finned fishes (coelacanths and lungfishes), tetrapods, and actinopterygians (ray-finned fishes), have been debated for almost a century. Phylogenetic analyses based on fossils, morphology, and molecular sequences have generated different models of relationships that remain unresolved. We identified 13 derived shared molecular markers (synapomorphies) that define clades in the vertebrate lineage and used them to resolve the phylogenetic relationships of extant jawed vertebrates. Our markers include the presence or absence of insertions and deletions in coding sequences, nuclear introns, and alternatively spliced transcripts. The synapomorphies identified by us are congruent with each other and give rise to a single phylogenetic tree. This tree confirms that chondrichthyans are basal to all living gnathostomes, that lungfishes (Dipnoi) are the closest living relatives of tetrapods, and that bichirs (Cladistia) are the living members of the most ancient family of ray-finned fishes. Our study also provides molecular evidence to support the monophyly of living tetrapods and teleosts. PMID:11553795

  16. Evolution and Functional Classification of Vertebrate Gene Deserts

    SciTech Connect

    Ovcharenko, I; Loots, G; Nobrega, M; Hardison, R; Miller, W; Stubbs, L

    2004-07-14

    Gene deserts, long stretches of DNA sequence devoid of protein coding genes, span approximately one quarter of the human genome. Through human-chicken genome comparisons we were able to characterized one third of human gene deserts as evolutionarily stable - they are highly conserved in vertebrates, resist chromosomal rearrangements, and contain multiple conserved non-coding elements physically linked to their neighboring genes. A linear relationship was observed between human and chicken orthologous stable gene deserts, where the human deserts appear to have expanded homogeneously by a uniform accumulation of repetitive elements. Stable gene deserts are associated with key vertebrate genes that construct the framework of vertebrate development; many of which encode transcription factors. We show that the regulatory machinery governing genes associated with stable gene deserts operates differently from other regions in the human genome and relies heavily on distant regulatory elements. The regulation guided by these elements is independent of the distance between the gene and its distant regulatory element, or the distance between two distant regulatory cassettes. The location of gene deserts and their associated genes in the genome is independent of chromosomal length or content presenting these regions as well-bounded regions evolving separately from the rest of the genome.

  17. The evolution of vertebrate Toll-like receptors

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Roach, J.C.; Glusman, G.; Rowen, L.; Kaur, A.; Purcell, M.K.; Smith, K.D.; Hood, L.E.; Aderem, A.

    2005-01-01

    The complete sequences of Takifugu Toll-like receptor (TLR) loci and gene predictions from many draft genomes enable comprehensive molecular phylogenetic analysis. Strong selective pressure for recognition of and response to pathogen-associated molecular patterns has maintained a largely unchanging TLR recognition in all vertebrates. There are six major families of vertebrate TLRs. This repertoire is distinct from that of invertebrates. TLRs within a family recognize a general class of pathogen-associated molecular patterns. Most vertebrates have exactly one gene ortholog for each TLR family. The family including TLR1 has more species-specific adaptations than other families. A major family including TLR11 is represented in humans only by a pseudogene. Coincidental evolution plays a minor role in TLR evolution. The sequencing phase of this study produced finished genomic sequences for the 12 Takifugu rubripes TLRs. In addition, we have produced > 70 gene models, including sequences from the opossum, chicken, frog, dog, sea urchin, and sea squirt. ?? 2005 by The National Academy of Sciences of the USA.

  18. Origin and genetic evolution of the vertebrate skeleton.

    PubMed

    Wada, Hiroshi

    2010-02-01

    The current understanding of the origin and evolution of the genetic cassette for the vertebrate skeletal system is reviewed. Molecular phylogenetic analyses of fibrillar collagen genes, which encode the main component of both cartilage and mineralized bone, suggest that genome duplications in vertebrate ancestors were essential for producing distinct collagen fibers for cartilage and mineralized bone. Several data Indicate co-expression of the ancestral copy of fibrillar collagen with the SoxE and Runx transcription factors. Therefore, the genetic cassette may have already existed in protochordate ancestors, and may operate in the development of the pharyngeal gill skeleton. Accompanied by genome duplications in vertebrate ancestors, this genetic cassette may have also been duplicated and co-opted for cartilage and bone. Subsequently, the genetic cassette for cartilage recruited novel genetic material via domain shuffling. Aggrecan, acquired by means of domain shuffling, performs an essential role in cartilage as a shock absorber. In contrast, the cassette for bone recruited new genetic material produced by tandem duplication of the SPARC/osteonectin genes. Some of the duplicated copies of SPARC/osteonectin became secretory Cabinding phosphoproteins (SCPPs) performing a central role in mineralization by regulating the calcium phosphate concentration. Comparative genome analysis revealed similar molecular evolutionary histories for the genetic cassettes for cartilage and bone, namely duplication of the ancestral genetic cassette and recruitment of novel genetic material.

  19. Vertebral degenerative disc disease severity evaluation using random forest classification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Munoz, Hector E.; Yao, Jianhua; Burns, Joseph E.; Pham, Yasuyuki; Stieger, James; Summers, Ronald M.

    2014-03-01

    Degenerative disc disease (DDD) develops in the spine as vertebral discs degenerate and osseous excrescences or outgrowths naturally form to restabilize unstable segments of the spine. These osseous excrescences, or osteophytes, may progress or stabilize in size as the spine reaches a new equilibrium point. We have previously created a CAD system that detects DDD. This paper presents a new system to determine the severity of DDD of individual vertebral levels. This will be useful to monitor the progress of developing DDD, as rapid growth may indicate that there is a greater stabilization problem that should be addressed. The existing DDD CAD system extracts the spine from CT images and segments the cortical shell of individual levels with a dual-surface model. The cortical shell is unwrapped, and is analyzed to detect the hyperdense regions of DDD. Three radiologists scored the severity of DDD of each disc space of 46 CT scans. Radiologists' scores and features generated from CAD detections were used to train a random forest classifier. The classifier then assessed the severity of DDD at each vertebral disc level. The agreement between the computer severity score and the average radiologist's score had a quadratic weighted Cohen's kappa of 0.64.

  20. Quantitative vertebral compression fracture evaluation using a height compass

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yao, Jianhua; Burns, Joseph E.; Wiese, Tatjana; Summers, Ronald M.

    2012-03-01

    Vertebral compression fractures can be caused by even minor trauma in patients with pathological conditions such as osteoporosis, varying greatly in vertebral body location and compression geometry. The location and morphology of the compression injury can guide decision making for treatment modality (vertebroplasty versus surgical fixation), and can be important for pre-surgical planning. We propose a height compass to evaluate the axial plane spatial distribution of compression injury (anterior, posterior, lateral, and central), and distinguish it from physiologic height variations of normal vertebrae. The method includes four steps: spine segmentation and partition, endplate detection, height compass computation and compression fracture evaluation. A height compass is computed for each vertebra, where the vertebral body is partitioned in the axial plane into 17 cells oriented about concentric rings. In the compass structure, a crown-like geometry is produced by three concentric rings which are divided into 8 equal length arcs by rays which are subtended by 8 common central angles. The radius of each ring increases multiplicatively, with resultant structure of a central node and two concentric surrounding bands of cells, each divided into octants. The height value for each octant is calculated and plotted against octants in neighboring vertebrae. The height compass shows intuitive display of the height distribution and can be used to easily identify the fracture regions. Our technique was evaluated on 8 thoraco-abdominal CT scans of patients with reported compression fractures and showed statistically significant differences in height value at the sites of the fractures.

  1. Expansion of transducin subunit gene families in early vertebrate tetraploidizations.

    PubMed

    Lagman, David; Sundström, Görel; Ocampo Daza, Daniel; Abalo, Xesús M; Larhammar, Dan

    2012-10-01

    Hundreds of gene families expanded in the early vertebrate tetraploidizations including many gene families in the phototransduction cascade. We have investigated the evolution of the heterotrimeric G-proteins of photoreceptors, the transducins, in relation to these events using both phylogenetic analyses and synteny comparisons. Three alpha subunit genes were identified in amniotes and the coelacanth, GNAT1-3; two of these were identified in amphibians and teleost fish, GNAT1 and GNAT2. Most tetrapods have four beta genes, GNB1-4, and teleosts have additional duplicates. Finally, three gamma genes were identified in mammals, GNGT1, GNG11 and GNGT2. Of these, GNGT1 and GNGT2 were found in the other vertebrates. In frog and zebrafish additional duplicates of GNGT2 were identified. Our analyses show all three transducin families expanded during the early vertebrate tetraploidizations and the beta and gamma families gained additional copies in the teleost-specific genome duplication. This suggests that the tetraploidizations contributed to visual specialisations. PMID:22814267

  2. Atypical oculopalatal tremor as the presentation of vertebral artery dolichoectasia

    PubMed Central

    Vanikieti, Kavin; Cheecharoen, Piyaphon; Jindahra, Panitha; Lueangaram, Sirin; Padungkiatsagul, Tanyatuth

    2016-01-01

    Vertebrobasilar dolichoectasia (VBD) is a rare dilative arteriopathy defined as elongation or widening of the intracranial vertebral and/or basilar arteries. The prevalence ranges from 0.06% to 5.8%. The majority of VBDs are asymptomatic. Downbeat nystagmus has been reported as a component of an infrequent ocular movement disorder in VBD. Nevertheless, oculopalatal tremor (OPT), delayed sequelae of a brainstem lesion, has never been demonstrated in VBD cases. Synchronized rhythmic involuntary contractions of the soft palate with an ocular pendular nystagmus, predominantly vertical pendular nystagmus, are the hallmark presentation. Our case demonstrated a 50-year-old female who presented with 3-month history of oscillopsia. Examination showed binocular conjugate torsional jerk nystagmus simultaneous with a contraction of the soft palate, defined as an atypical OPT, resulting from dolichoectatic left vertebral artery compressing on medulla, demonstrated by magnetic resonance imaging. Bilateral conjugate torsional jerk nystagmus simultaneous with palatal tremor, considering as an atypical OPT, should be included as one of the symptomatic presentations of vertebral artery dolichoectasia in spite of its rarity. PMID:27660495

  3. The eyes of Tullimonstrum reveal a vertebrate affinity.

    PubMed

    Clements, Thomas; Dolocan, Andrei; Martin, Peter; Purnell, Mark A; Vinther, Jakob; Gabbott, Sarah E

    2016-04-28

    Tullimonstrum gregarium is an iconic soft-bodied fossil from the Carboniferous Mazon Creek Lagerstätte (Illinois, USA). Despite a large number of specimens and distinct anatomy, various analyses over the past five decades have failed to determine the phylogenetic affinities of the 'Tully monster', and although it has been allied to such disparate phyla as the Mollusca, Annelida or Chordata, it remains enigmatic. The nature and phylogenetic affinities of Tullimonstrum have defied confident systematic placement because none of its preserved anatomy provides unequivocal evidence of homology, without which comparative analysis fails. Here we show that the eyes of Tullimonstrum possess ultrastructural details indicating homology with vertebrate eyes. Anatomical analysis using scanning electron microscopy reveals that the eyes of Tullimonstrum preserve a retina defined by a thick sheet comprising distinct layers of spheroidal and cylindrical melanosomes. Time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry and multivariate statistics provide further evidence that these microbodies are melanosomes. A range of animals have melanin in their eyes, but the possession of melanosomes of two distinct morphologies arranged in layers, forming retinal pigment epithelium, is a synapomorphy of vertebrates. Our analysis indicates that in addition to evidence of colour patterning, ecology and thermoregulation, fossil melanosomes can also carry a phylogenetic signal. Identification in Tullimonstrum of spheroidal and cylindrical melanosomes forming the remains of retinal pigment epithelium indicates that it is a vertebrate; considering its body parts in this new light suggests it was an anatomically unusual member of total group Vertebrata. PMID:27074512

  4. CRDB: database of chemosensory receptor gene families in vertebrate.

    PubMed

    Dong, Dong; Jin, Ke; Wu, Xiaoli; Zhong, Yang

    2012-01-01

    Chemosensory receptors (CR) are crucial for animals to sense the environmental changes and survive on earth. The emergence of whole-genome sequences provides us an opportunity to identify the entire CR gene repertoires. To completely gain more insight into the evolution of CR genes in vertebrates, we identified the nearly all CR genes in 25 vertebrates using homology-based approaches. Among these CR gene repertoires, nearly half of them were identified for the first time in those previously uncharacterized species, such as the guinea pig, giant panda and elephant, etc. Consistent with previous findings, we found that the numbers of CR genes vary extensively among different species, suggesting an extreme form of 'birth-and-death' evolution. For the purpose of facilitating CR gene analysis, we constructed a database with the goals to provide a resource for CR genes annotation and a web tool for exploring their evolutionary patterns. Besides a search engine for the gene extraction from a specific chromosome region, an easy-to-use phylogenetic analysis tool was also provided to facilitate online phylogeny study of CR genes. Our work can provide a rigorous platform for further study on the evolution of CR genes in vertebrates.

  5. Vertebral Dissecting Aneurysm Treated with Wingspan Stent Deployment and Detachable Coils

    PubMed Central

    Lv, M.; Lv, X.; Li, Y.; Yang, X.; Wu, Z.

    2009-01-01

    Summary We describe the first documented endovascular treatment of vertebral dissecting aneurysm using a Wingspan stent and detachable coils. A 54-year-old man presented with a nonruptured vertebral dissecting aneurysm. Because of the dissecting nature of the vertebral aneurysms, a 3x15-mm Wingspan stent was placed in the left vertebral artery. One month later, several detachable coils were introduced into the aneurysm. Six-month follow-up angiogram confirmed the obliteration. Vertebral dissecting aneurysm can be treated with Wingspan stent placement and detachable coils. PMID:20465940

  6. The evolutionary origin of the vertebrate body plan: the problem of head segmentation.

    PubMed

    Onai, Takayuki; Irie, Naoki; Kuratani, Shigeru

    2014-01-01

    The basic body plan of vertebrates, as typified by the complex head structure, evolved from the last common ancestor approximately 530 Mya. In this review, we present a brief overview of historical discussions to disentangle the various concepts and arguments regarding the evolutionary development of the vertebrate body plan. We then explain the historical transition of the arguments about the vertebrate body plan from merely epistemological comparative morphology to comparative embryology as a scientific treatment on this topic. Finally, we review the current progress of molecular evidence regarding the basic vertebrate body plan, focusing on the link between the basic vertebrate body plan and the evolutionarily conserved developmental stages (phylotypic stages).

  7. Kyphoplasty Increases Vertebral Height, Decreases Both Pain Score and Opiate Requirements While Improving Functional Status

    PubMed Central

    Tolba, Reda; Bolash, Robert B.; Shroll, Joshua; Costandi, Shrif; Dalton, Jarrod E.; Sanghvi, Chirag; Mekhail, Nagy

    2014-01-01

    Vertebral compression fractures can result from advanced osteoporosis, or less commonly from metastatic or traumatic insults to the vertebral column, and result in disabling pain and decreased functional capacity. Various vertebral augmentation options including kyphoplasty aim at preventing the sequelae of pain and immobility that can develop as the result of the vertebral fractures. The mechanism for pain relief following kyphoplasty is not entirely understood, and the restoration of a portion of the lost vertebral height is a subject of debate. We retrospectively reviewed radiographic imaging, pain relief, analgesic intake and functional outcomes in 67 consecutive patients who underwent single- or multilevel kyphoplasty with the primary goal of quantifying the restoration of lost vertebral height. We observed a mean of 45% of the lost vertebral height restored postprocedurally. Secondarily, kyphoplasty was associated with significant decreases in pain scores, daily morphine consumption and improvement in patient-reported functional measures. PMID:24165285

  8. Decelerated genome evolution in modern vertebrates revealed by analysis of multiple lancelet genomes.

    PubMed

    Huang, Shengfeng; Chen, Zelin; Yan, Xinyu; Yu, Ting; Huang, Guangrui; Yan, Qingyu; Pontarotti, Pierre Antoine; Zhao, Hongchen; Li, Jie; Yang, Ping; Wang, Ruihua; Li, Rui; Tao, Xin; Deng, Ting; Wang, Yiquan; Li, Guang; Zhang, Qiujin; Zhou, Sisi; You, Leiming; Yuan, Shaochun; Fu, Yonggui; Wu, Fenfang; Dong, Meiling; Chen, Shangwu; Xu, Anlong

    2014-12-19

    Vertebrates diverged from other chordates ~500 Myr ago and experienced successful innovations and adaptations, but the genomic basis underlying vertebrate origins are not fully understood. Here we suggest, through comparison with multiple lancelet (amphioxus) genomes, that ancient vertebrates experienced high rates of protein evolution, genome rearrangement and domain shuffling and that these rates greatly slowed down after the divergence of jawed and jawless vertebrates. Compared with lancelets, modern vertebrates retain, at least relatively, less protein diversity, fewer nucleotide polymorphisms, domain combinations and conserved non-coding elements (CNE). Modern vertebrates also lost substantial transposable element (TE) diversity, whereas lancelets preserve high TE diversity that includes even the long-sought RAG transposon. Lancelets also exhibit rapid gene turnover, pervasive transcription, fastest exon shuffling in metazoans and substantial TE methylation not observed in other invertebrates. These new lancelet genome sequences provide new insights into the chordate ancestral state and the vertebrate evolution.

  9. Kyphoplasty increases vertebral height, decreases both pain score and opiate requirements while improving functional status.

    PubMed

    Tolba, Reda; Bolash, Robert B; Shroll, Joshua; Costandi, Shrif; Dalton, Jarrod E; Sanghvi, Chirag; Mekhail, Nagy

    2014-03-01

    Vertebral compression fractures can result from advanced osteoporosis, or less commonly from metastatic or traumatic insults to the vertebral column, and result in disabling pain and decreased functional capacity. Various vertebral augmentation options including kyphoplasty aim at preventing the sequelae of pain and immobility that can develop as the result of the vertebral fractures. The mechanism for pain relief following kyphoplasty is not entirely understood, and the restoration of a portion of the lost vertebral height is a subject of debate. We retrospectively reviewed radiographic imaging, pain relief, analgesic intake and functional outcomes in 67 consecutive patients who underwent single- or multilevel kyphoplasty with the primary goal of quantifying the restoration of lost vertebral height. We observed a mean of 45% of the lost vertebral height restored postprocedurally. Secondarily, kyphoplasty was associated with significant decreases in pain scores, daily morphine consumption and improvement in patient-reported functional measures.

  10. Kyphoplasty increases vertebral height, decreases both pain score and opiate requirements while improving functional status.

    PubMed

    Tolba, Reda; Bolash, Robert B; Shroll, Joshua; Costandi, Shrif; Dalton, Jarrod E; Sanghvi, Chirag; Mekhail, Nagy

    2014-03-01

    Vertebral compression fractures can result from advanced osteoporosis, or less commonly from metastatic or traumatic insults to the vertebral column, and result in disabling pain and decreased functional capacity. Various vertebral augmentation options including kyphoplasty aim at preventing the sequelae of pain and immobility that can develop as the result of the vertebral fractures. The mechanism for pain relief following kyphoplasty is not entirely understood, and the restoration of a portion of the lost vertebral height is a subject of debate. We retrospectively reviewed radiographic imaging, pain relief, analgesic intake and functional outcomes in 67 consecutive patients who underwent single- or multilevel kyphoplasty with the primary goal of quantifying the restoration of lost vertebral height. We observed a mean of 45% of the lost vertebral height restored postprocedurally. Secondarily, kyphoplasty was associated with significant decreases in pain scores, daily morphine consumption and improvement in patient-reported functional measures. PMID:24165285

  11. Decelerated genome evolution in modern vertebrates revealed by analysis of multiple lancelet genomes.

    PubMed

    Huang, Shengfeng; Chen, Zelin; Yan, Xinyu; Yu, Ting; Huang, Guangrui; Yan, Qingyu; Pontarotti, Pierre Antoine; Zhao, Hongchen; Li, Jie; Yang, Ping; Wang, Ruihua; Li, Rui; Tao, Xin; Deng, Ting; Wang, Yiquan; Li, Guang; Zhang, Qiujin; Zhou, Sisi; You, Leiming; Yuan, Shaochun; Fu, Yonggui; Wu, Fenfang; Dong, Meiling; Chen, Shangwu; Xu, Anlong

    2014-01-01

    Vertebrates diverged from other chordates ~500 Myr ago and experienced successful innovations and adaptations, but the genomic basis underlying vertebrate origins are not fully understood. Here we suggest, through comparison with multiple lancelet (amphioxus) genomes, that ancient vertebrates experienced high rates of protein evolution, genome rearrangement and domain shuffling and that these rates greatly slowed down after the divergence of jawed and jawless vertebrates. Compared with lancelets, modern vertebrates retain, at least relatively, less protein diversity, fewer nucleotide polymorphisms, domain combinations and conserved non-coding elements (CNE). Modern vertebrates also lost substantial transposable element (TE) diversity, whereas lancelets preserve high TE diversity that includes even the long-sought RAG transposon. Lancelets also exhibit rapid gene turnover, pervasive transcription, fastest exon shuffling in metazoans and substantial TE methylation not observed in other invertebrates. These new lancelet genome sequences provide new insights into the chordate ancestral state and the vertebrate evolution. PMID:25523484

  12. Vascular Plant and Vertebrate Inventory of Tuzigoot National Monument

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Powell, Brian F.; Albrecht, E.W.; Halvorson, William Lee; Schmidt, Cecilia A.; Anning, P.; Docherty, K.

    2005-01-01

    Executive Summary From 2002 to 2004, we surveyed for plants and vertebrates (amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals) at Tuzigoot National Monument (NM) and adjacent areas in Arizona. This was the first effort of its kind in the area and was part of a larger effort to inventory vascular plants and vertebrates in eight National Park Service units in Arizona and New Mexico. In addition to our own surveys, we also compiled a complete list of species that have been found by previous studies. We found 330 species, including 142 that had not previously been recorded at the monument (Table 1). We found 39 species of non-native plants, 11 non-native fishes, three non-native birds, and one non-native species each of amphibian and mammal. Based on our work and that of others, there have been 597 species of plants and vertebrates found at the monument. The bird community at the monument had the highest species richness of any national park unit in central and southern Arizona. We found all other taxa to have intermediate species richness compared to other park units in the region. This extraordinary species richness observed for birds, as well as for some other taxa, is due primarily to Tavasci Marsh and the Verde River, two critical sources of perennial water, which provide habitat for many regionally rare or uncommon species. The location of the monument at the northern edge of the Sonoran Desert and at the southern edge of the Mogollon Rim also plays an important role in determining the distribution and community composition of the plant and vertebrate communities. Based on our findings, we believe the high number of non-native species, especially fish and plants, should be of particular management concern. We detail other management challenges, most notably the rapid increase in housing and associated commercial development near the monument, which will continue to impact the plant and vertebrate communities. Based on our data and a review of past studies, we believe the

  13. 2R and remodeling of vertebrate signal transduction engine

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Whole genome duplication (WGD) is a special case of gene duplication, observed rarely in animals, whereby all genes duplicate simultaneously through polyploidisation. Two rounds of WGD (2R-WGD) occurred at the base of vertebrates, giving rise to an enormous wave of genetic novelty, but a systematic analysis of functional consequences of this event has not yet been performed. Results We show that 2R-WGD affected an overwhelming majority (74%) of signalling genes, in particular developmental pathways involving receptor tyrosine kinases, Wnt and transforming growth factor-β ligands, G protein-coupled receptors and the apoptosis pathway. 2R-retained genes, in contrast to tandem duplicates, were enriched in protein interaction domains and multifunctional signalling modules of Ras and mitogen-activated protein kinase cascades. 2R-WGD had a fundamental impact on the cell-cycle machinery, redefined molecular building blocks of the neuronal synapse, and was formative for vertebrate brains. We investigated 2R-associated nodes in the context of the human signalling network, as well as in an inferred ancestral pre-2R (AP2R) network, and found that hubs (particularly involving negative regulation) were preferentially retained, with high connectivity driving retention. Finally, microarrays and proteomics demonstrated a trend for gradual paralog expression divergence independent of the duplication mechanism, but inferred ancestral expression states suggested preferential subfunctionalisation among 2R-ohnologs (2ROs). Conclusions The 2R event left an indelible imprint on vertebrate signalling and the cell cycle. We show that 2R-WGD preferentially retained genes are associated with higher organismal complexity (for example, locomotion, nervous system, morphogenesis), while genes associated with basic cellular functions (for example, translation, replication, splicing, recombination; with the notable exception of cell cycle) tended to be excluded. 2R-WGD set the stage

  14. Evolutionary hierarchy of vertebrate-like heterotrimeric G protein families.

    PubMed

    Krishnan, Arunkumar; Mustafa, Arshi; Almén, Markus Sällman; Fredriksson, Robert; Williams, Michael J; Schiöth, Helgi B

    2015-10-01

    Heterotrimeric G proteins perform a crucial role as molecular switches controlling various cellular responses mediated by G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) signaling pathway. Recent data have shown that the vertebrate-like G protein families are found across metazoans and their closest unicellular relatives. However, an overall evolutionary hierarchy of vertebrate-like G proteins, including gene family annotations and in particular mapping individual gene gain/loss events across diverse holozoan lineages is still incomplete. Here, with more expanded invertebrate taxon sampling, we have reconstructed phylogenetic trees for each of the G protein classes/families and provide a robust classification and hierarchy of vertebrate-like heterotrimeric G proteins. Our results further extend the evidence that the common ancestor (CA) of holozoans had at least five ancestral Gα genes corresponding to all major vertebrate Gα classes and contain a total of eight genes including two Gβ and one Gγ. Our results also indicate that the GNAI/O-like gene likely duplicated in the last CA of metazoans to give rise to GNAI- and GNAO-like genes, which are conserved across invertebrates. Moreover, homologs of GNB1-4 paralogon- and GNB5 family-like genes are found in most metazoans and that the unicellular holozoans encode two ancestral Gβ genes. Similarly, most bilaterian invertebrates encode two Gγ genes which include a representative of the GNG gene cluster and a putative homolog of GNG13. Interestingly, our results also revealed key evolutionary events such as the Drosophila melanogaster eye specific Gβ subunit that is found conserved in most arthropods and several previously unidentified species specific expansions within Gαi/o, Gαs, Gαq, Gα12/13 classes and the GNB1-4 paralogon. Also, we provide an overall proposed evolutionary scenario on the expansions of all G protein families in vertebrate tetraploidizations. Our robust classification/hierarchy is essential to further

  15. The impact of endplate fracture on postoperative vertebral height loss and kyphotic deformity during treatment of osteoporotic vertebral compression fractures with balloon kyphoplasty

    PubMed Central

    Li, Qingqing; Xiao, Long; Zhang, Jianwei; Fan, Jin; Zhou, Wei; Yin, Guoyong; Ren, Yongxin

    2016-01-01

    Abstract This retrospective study investigated the impact of endplate fracture on postoperative vertebral height loss and kyphotic deformity in 144 patients with osteoporotic vertebral compression fracture (OVCF), who received balloon kyphoplasty. Patients were divided into four groups: Group 1 had no superior endplate fracture, Group 2 had fractures on the anterior portion of the superior endplate, Group 3 had fractures on the posterior portion of the superior endplate, and Group 4 had complete superior endplate fractures. Anterior and middle vertebral body height, vertebral compression ratio, vertebral height loss rate, and kyphosis Cobb angle of each patient were measured and visual analogue scale (VAS) and Oswestry disability index (ODI) scores were recorded. The anterior vertebral height and kyphosis deformity of all groups significantly improved after the surgery, whereas substantial anterior vertebral height loss and increased Cobb angle were observed in all patients at the last follow-up. Although the vertebral height loss rate and the Cobb angle in Group 2, 3 and 4 were larger compared with Group 1 at the last follow-up, only the vertebral height loss rate in Group 4 and the increase in the Cobb angle in Group 2 and 4 were statistically different from those in Group 1. The VAS and ODI scores in all groups measured after the surgery and at the last follow-up were significantly lower compared with preoperative scores, but there was no significant difference among these groups. Balloon kyphoplasty significantly improved vertebral fracture height and kyphosis. Vertebral height loss and increased kyphotic deformity were observed in OVCF patients with endplate fractures after the surgery. Postoperative aggravation of kyphosis was observed in Group 2. Furthermore, severe vertebral height loss and increased kyphotic deformity were confirmed in Group 4 after the surgery. Our results suggested that postoperative vertebral height loss and aggravation of kyphosis may

  16. Indication for Partial Vertebral Osteotomy and Realignment in Posterior Spinal Fixation for Osteoporotic Thoracolumbar Vertebral Collapse with Neurological Deficits

    PubMed Central

    TAKAHASHI, Toshiyuki; HANAKITA, Junya; KAWAOKA, Taigo; OHTAKE, Yasufumi; ADACHI, Hiromasa; SHIMIZU, Kampei

    2016-01-01

    Instrumented spinal fixation is ordinarily required in patients who present with myelopathy or cauda equina syndrome secondary to vertebral collapse following osteoporotic thoracolumbar fracture. Posterior spinal fixation is a major surgical option, and partial vertebral osteotomy (PVO) through a posterior approach is occasionally reasonable for achievement of complete neural decompression and improvement of excessive local kyphosis. However, the indications and need for PVO remain unclear. The objectives of this retrospective study were to determine the efficacy and safety of posterior spinal fixation with or without PVO for osteoporotic thoracolumbar vertebral collapse and identify patients who require neural decompression and alignment correction by PVO. We retrospectively reviewed the clinical records of 20 patients (13 females, 7 males; mean age, 67.1 years) who underwent instrumented posterior fixation for osteoporotic thoracolumbar vertebral fracture. Clinical outcomes were assessed by the Japanese Orthopedic Association score and visual analog scale scores in the lumbar and leg areas. PVO was added with posterior spinal fixation in eight patients because neural decompression was incomplete after laminectomy as indicated by intraoperative echo imaging. Neurological and functional recovery significantly improved during follow-up. Clinical outcomes in patients who underwent PVO were similar to those in patients who did not undergo PVO. However, correction of the local kyphotic angle and improvement of spinal canal compromise after surgery was significant in patients who underwent PVO. The patients who required PVO had a less local kyphotic angle in the supine position and higher occupation rate of the fractured fragment in the spinal canal in the preoperative examination. PMID:27021642

  17. Comparative sensitivity of aquatic invertebrate and vertebrate species to wastewater from an operational coal mine in central Queensland, Australia.

    PubMed

    Lanctôt, C; Wilson, S P; Fabbro, L; Leusch, F D L; Melvin, S D

    2016-07-01

    Coal excavation and refinement processes generate substantial volumes of contaminated effluent that may be detrimental to aquatic ecosystems. As such, understanding the impacts of coal mine water releases on aquatic animals and ecosystems is essential for effectively managing and protecting neighboring environments. Such information will ultimately be applied towards developing ongoing monitoring strategies that are protective of native wildlife. Despite intensive mining operations in Australia, few studies have documented toxicity associated with coal mine wastewater (CMW) on native species. To address existing knowledge gaps, we investigated acute toxicity (48-96h) using eight native invertebrate species and sub-chronic effects (2 week) using three vertebrate species following exposure to wastewater from two dams (CMW1 and CMW2) located at an open-cut coal mine licensed to discharge into the Fitzroy catchment (Queensland, Australia). Wastewater from these sites is characterized by elevated conductivity, pH, sulfates as well as relatively high total and dissolved metal(loid)s (including As, Al, B, Cu, Mn, Ni, Se and Zn). Acute exposures revealed cladocerans (Daphnia carinata) and planarians (Dugesia sp.) to be the most sensitive species, exhibiting significant mortality after 48 and 96h exposure to CMW2, respectively. Neither wastewater was found to elicit acute toxicity in vertebrates, but a range of sub-lethal morphological effects were observed following the sub-chronic exposures. The overall response pattern was characterized by decreased condition factor and hepatosomatic index in the fish Hypseleotris compressa and Pseudomugil signifier, and in Limnodynastes peronii tadpoles. Tadpoles were generally more sensitive compared to the two fish species. Differences in responses were observed amongst CMW1 and CMW2, which likely relates to differences in physico-chemical properties between sites. Our results have identified several candidate vertebrate and

  18. Comparative sensitivity of aquatic invertebrate and vertebrate species to wastewater from an operational coal mine in central Queensland, Australia.

    PubMed

    Lanctôt, C; Wilson, S P; Fabbro, L; Leusch, F D L; Melvin, S D

    2016-07-01

    Coal excavation and refinement processes generate substantial volumes of contaminated effluent that may be detrimental to aquatic ecosystems. As such, understanding the impacts of coal mine water releases on aquatic animals and ecosystems is essential for effectively managing and protecting neighboring environments. Such information will ultimately be applied towards developing ongoing monitoring strategies that are protective of native wildlife. Despite intensive mining operations in Australia, few studies have documented toxicity associated with coal mine wastewater (CMW) on native species. To address existing knowledge gaps, we investigated acute toxicity (48-96h) using eight native invertebrate species and sub-chronic effects (2 week) using three vertebrate species following exposure to wastewater from two dams (CMW1 and CMW2) located at an open-cut coal mine licensed to discharge into the Fitzroy catchment (Queensland, Australia). Wastewater from these sites is characterized by elevated conductivity, pH, sulfates as well as relatively high total and dissolved metal(loid)s (including As, Al, B, Cu, Mn, Ni, Se and Zn). Acute exposures revealed cladocerans (Daphnia carinata) and planarians (Dugesia sp.) to be the most sensitive species, exhibiting significant mortality after 48 and 96h exposure to CMW2, respectively. Neither wastewater was found to elicit acute toxicity in vertebrates, but a range of sub-lethal morphological effects were observed following the sub-chronic exposures. The overall response pattern was characterized by decreased condition factor and hepatosomatic index in the fish Hypseleotris compressa and Pseudomugil signifier, and in Limnodynastes peronii tadpoles. Tadpoles were generally more sensitive compared to the two fish species. Differences in responses were observed amongst CMW1 and CMW2, which likely relates to differences in physico-chemical properties between sites. Our results have identified several candidate vertebrate and

  19. Ecological relationships of meso-scale distribution in 25 neotropical vertebrate species.

    PubMed

    Michalski, Lincoln José; Norris, Darren; de Oliveira, Tadeu Gomes; Michalski, Fernanda

    2015-01-01

    Vertebrates are a vital ecological component of Amazon forest biodiversity. Although vertebrates are a functionally important part of various ecosystem services they continue to be threatened by anthropogenic impacts throughout the Amazon. Here we use a standardized, regularly spaced arrangement of camera traps within 25km2 to provide a baseline assessment of vertebrate species diversity in a sustainable use protected area in the eastern Brazilian Amazon. We examined seasonal differences in the per species encounter rates (number of photos per camera trap and number of cameras with photos). Generalized linear models (GLMs) were then used to examine the influence of five variables (altitude, canopy cover, basal area, distance to nearest river and distance to nearest large river) on the number of photos per species and on functional groups. GLMs were also used to examine the relationships between large predators [Jaguar (Panthera onca) and Puma (Puma concolor)] and their prey. A total of 649 independent photos of 25 species were obtained from 1,800 camera trap days (900 each during wet and dry seasons). Only ungulates and rodents showed significant seasonal differences in the number of photos per camera. The number of photos differed between seasons for only three species (Mazama americana, Dasyprocta leporina and Myoprocta acouchy) all of which were photographed more (3 to 10 fold increase) during the wet season. Mazama americana was the only species where a significant difference was found in occupancy, with more photos in more cameras during the wet season. For most groups and species variation in the number of photos per camera was only explained weakly by the GLMs (deviance explained ranging from 10.3 to 54.4%). Terrestrial birds (Crax alector, Psophia crepitans and Tinamus major) and rodents (Cuniculus paca, Dasyprocta leporina and M. acouchy) were the notable exceptions, with our GLMs significantly explaining variation in the distribution of all species

  20. Ecological relationships of meso-scale distribution in 25 neotropical vertebrate species.

    PubMed

    Michalski, Lincoln José; Norris, Darren; de Oliveira, Tadeu Gomes; Michalski, Fernanda

    2015-01-01

    Vertebrates are a vital ecological component of Amazon forest biodiversity. Although vertebrates are a functionally important part of various ecosystem services they continue to be threatened by anthropogenic impacts throughout the Amazon. Here we use a standardized, regularly spaced arrangement of camera traps within 25km2 to provide a baseline assessment of vertebrate species diversity in a sustainable use protected area in the eastern Brazilian Amazon. We examined seasonal differences in the per species encounter rates (number of photos per camera trap and number of cameras with photos). Generalized linear models (GLMs) were then used to examine the influence of five variables (altitude, canopy cover, basal area, distance to nearest river and distance to nearest large river) on the number of photos per species and on functional groups. GLMs were also used to examine the relationships between large predators [Jaguar (Panthera onca) and Puma (Puma concolor)] and their prey. A total of 649 independent photos of 25 species were obtained from 1,800 camera trap days (900 each during wet and dry seasons). Only ungulates and rodents showed significant seasonal differences in the number of photos per camera. The number of photos differed between seasons for only three species (Mazama americana, Dasyprocta leporina and Myoprocta acouchy) all of which were photographed more (3 to 10 fold increase) during the wet season. Mazama americana was the only species where a significant difference was found in occupancy, with more photos in more cameras during the wet season. For most groups and species variation in the number of photos per camera was only explained weakly by the GLMs (deviance explained ranging from 10.3 to 54.4%). Terrestrial birds (Crax alector, Psophia crepitans and Tinamus major) and rodents (Cuniculus paca, Dasyprocta leporina and M. acouchy) were the notable exceptions, with our GLMs significantly explaining variation in the distribution of all species

  1. Ecological Relationships of Meso-Scale Distribution in 25 Neotropical Vertebrate Species

    PubMed Central

    Michalski, Lincoln José; Norris, Darren; de Oliveira, Tadeu Gomes; Michalski, Fernanda

    2015-01-01

    Vertebrates are a vital ecological component of Amazon forest biodiversity. Although vertebrates are a functionally important part of various ecosystem services they continue to be threatened by anthropogenic impacts throughout the Amazon. Here we use a standardized, regularly spaced arrangement of camera traps within 25km2 to provide a baseline assessment of vertebrate species diversity in a sustainable use protected area in the eastern Brazilian Amazon. We examined seasonal differences in the per species encounter rates (number of photos per camera trap and number of cameras with photos). Generalized linear models (GLMs) were then used to examine the influence of five variables (altitude, canopy cover, basal area, distance to nearest river and distance to nearest large river) on the number of photos per species and on functional groups. GLMs were also used to examine the relationships between large predators [Jaguar (Panthera onca) and Puma (Puma concolor)] and their prey. A total of 649 independent photos of 25 species were obtained from 1,800 camera trap days (900 each during wet and dry seasons). Only ungulates and rodents showed significant seasonal differences in the number of photos per camera. The number of photos differed between seasons for only three species (Mazama americana, Dasyprocta leporina and Myoprocta acouchy) all of which were photographed more (3 to 10 fold increase) during the wet season. Mazama americana was the only species where a significant difference was found in occupancy, with more photos in more cameras during the wet season. For most groups and species variation in the number of photos per camera was only explained weakly by the GLMs (deviance explained ranging from 10.3 to 54.4%). Terrestrial birds (Crax alector, Psophia crepitans and Tinamus major) and rodents (Cuniculus paca, Dasyprocta leporina and M. acouchy) were the notable exceptions, with our GLMs significantly explaining variation in the distribution of all species

  2. Insider protection

    SciTech Connect

    Waddoups, I.G.

    1993-07-01

    The government community is broadly addressing the insider threat. The first section of this paper defines protection approaches and the latter sections present various applicable technology developments. The bulk of the paper discusses technology developments applied to (1) personnel and material tracking and inventory, (2) classified document protection, and (3) protecting security systems. The personnel and material tracking system uses a PC based-host to (1) collect information from proximity tags and material movement sensors, (2) apply rules to this input to assure that the ongoing activity meets the site selectable rules and, (3) forward the results to either an automated inventory system or an alarm system. The document protection system uses a PC network to efficiently and securely control classified material which is stored on write-once-read-mostly optical media. The protection of sensor to multiplexer communications in a security system is emphasized in the discussion of protecting security systems.

  3. Vertebrate Dissimilarity Due to Turnover and Richness Differences in a Highly Beta-Diverse Region: The Role of Spatial Grain Size, Dispersal Ability and Distance

    PubMed Central

    Calderón-Patrón, Jaime M.; Moreno, Claudia E.; Pineda-López, Rubén; Sánchez-Rojas, Gerardo; Zuria, Iriana

    2013-01-01

    We explore the influence of spatial grain size, dispersal ability, and geographic distance on the patterns of species dissimilarity of terrestrial vertebrates, separating the dissimilarity explained by species replacement (turnover) from that resulting from richness differences. With data for 905 species of terrestrial vertebrates distributed in the Isthmus of Tehuantepec, classified into five groups according to their taxonomy and dispersal ability, we calculated total dissimilarity and its additive partitioning as two components: dissimilarity derived from turnover and dissimilarity derived from richness differences. These indices were compared using fine (10 x 10 km), intermediate (20 x 20 km) and coarse (40 x 40 km) grain grids, and were tested for any correlations with geographic distance. The results showed that total dissimilarity is high for the terrestrial vertebrates in this region. Total dissimilarity, and dissimilarity due to turnover are correlated with geographic distance, and the patterns are clearer when the grain is fine, which is consistent with the distance-decay pattern of similarity. For all terrestrial vertebrates tested on the Isthmus of Tehuantepec both the dissimilarity derived from turnover and the dissimilarity resulting from richness differences make important contributions to total dissimilarity, and dispersal ability does not seem to influence the dissimilarity patterns. These findings support the idea that conservation efforts in this region require a system of interconnected protected areas that embrace the environmental, climatic and biogeographic heterogeneity of the area. PMID:24324840

  4. Negative effects of vertebrate herbivores on invertebrates in a coastal dune community.

    PubMed

    Huntzinger, Mikaela; Karban, Richard; Cushman, J Hall

    2008-07-01

    Although competition has been a major focus in ecology for the past century, most empirical and theoretical studies in this area have emphasized interactions between closely related species. However, there is growing evidence that negative interactions among distantly related taxa also occur and may be far more important than previously thought. In this study, we took advantage of an 11-year-old replicated vertebrate-exclosure experiment in a coastal dune community in northern California, USA, to examine the effects of the two most common vertebrate herbivores (jackrabbits and black-tailed deer) on the abundance of the three most visible invertebrate herbivores (two snail, a moth, and a grasshopper species). Our results indicate that four of the six possible pairwise interactions were significantly negative for the invertebrates. Jackrabbits reduced the abundances of snails by 44-75%, tiger moth caterpillars by 36%, and grasshoppers by 62%. Deer reduced the abundances of snails by 32%, increased the abundances of caterpillars by 31%, and had no measurable effect on grasshopper abundance. Our data also revealed that jackrabbits significantly decreased the volume of forbs and common shrubs and the flowering by grasses in our study plots. We were unable to detect an effect of deer on these measures of vegetation. These results suggest that by changing vegetation, jackrabbits may reduce invertebrate populations that are limited by food, protective structures, or microclimate provided by plants. Of these three mechanisms, only shade was strongly supported as limiting snail numbers in smaller-scale manipulations. In most systems, as in this one, the number of pairs of distantly related herbivores far exceeds the number of pairs of congeners. Since interactions among distantly related herbivores may be common in many cases, these interactions are likely to be important and should receive far more attention from ecologists.

  5. Seahorse Brood Pouch Transcriptome Reveals Common Genes Associated with Vertebrate Pregnancy.

    PubMed

    Whittington, Camilla M; Griffith, Oliver W; Qi, Weihong; Thompson, Michael B; Wilson, Anthony B

    2015-12-01

    Viviparity (live birth) has evolved more than 150 times in vertebrates, and represents an excellent model system for studying the evolution of complex traits. There are at least 23 independent origins of viviparity in fishes, with syngnathid fishes (seahorses and pipefish) unique in exhibiting male pregnancy. Male seahorses and pipefish have evolved specialized brooding pouches that provide protection, gas exchange, osmoregulation, and limited nutrient provisioning to developing embryos. Pouch structures differ widely across the Syngnathidae, offering an ideal opportunity to study the evolution of reproductive complexity. However, the physiological and genetic changes facilitating male pregnancy are largely unknown. We used transcriptome profiling to examine pouch gene expression at successive gestational stages in a syngnathid with the most complex brood pouch morphology, the seahorse Hippocampus abdominalis. Using a unique time-calibrated RNA-seq data set including brood pouch at key stages of embryonic development, we identified transcriptional changes associated with brood pouch remodeling, nutrient and waste transport, gas exchange, osmoregulation, and immunological protection of developing embryos at conception, development and parturition. Key seahorse transcripts share homology with genes of reproductive function in pregnant mammals, reptiles, and other live-bearing fish, suggesting a common toolkit of genes regulating pregnancy in divergent evolutionary lineages.

  6. Segmentation of vertebral bodies in CT and MR images based on 3D deterministic models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Štern, Darko; Vrtovec, Tomaž; Pernuš, Franjo; Likar, Boštjan

    2011-03-01

    The evaluation of vertebral deformations is of great importance in clinical diagnostics and therapy of pathological conditions affecting the spine. Although modern clinical practice is oriented towards the computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance (MR) imaging techniques, as they can provide a detailed 3D representation of vertebrae, the established methods for the evaluation of vertebral deformations still provide only a two-dimensional (2D) geometrical description. Segmentation of vertebrae in 3D may therefore not only improve their visualization, but also provide reliable and accurate 3D measurements of vertebral deformations. In this paper we propose a method for 3D segmentation of individual vertebral bodies that can be performed in CT and MR images. Initialized with a single point inside the vertebral body, the segmentation is performed by optimizing the parameters of a 3D deterministic model of the vertebral body to achieve the best match of the model to the vertebral body in the image. The performance of the proposed method was evaluated on five CT (40 vertebrae) and five T2-weighted MR (40 vertebrae) spine images, among them five are normal and five are pathological. The results show that the proposed method can be used for 3D segmentation of vertebral bodies in CT and MR images and that the proposed model can describe a variety of vertebral body shapes. The method may be therefore used for initializing whole vertebra segmentation or reliably describing vertebral body deformations.

  7. The biogeography of threatened insular iguanas and opportunities for invasive vertebrate management

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Tershy, Bernie R.; Newton, Kelly M.; Spatz, Dena R.; Swinnerton, Kirsty; Iverson, John B.; Fisher, Robert N.; Harlow, Peter S.; Holmes, Nick D.; Croll, Donald A.; Iverson, J.B.; Grant, T. D.; Knapp, C. R.; Pasachnik, S. A.

    2016-01-01

    Iguanas are a particularly threatened group of reptiles, with 61% of species at risk of extinction. Primary threats to iguanas include habitat loss, direct and indirect impacts by invasive vertebrates, overexploitation, and human disturbance. As conspicuous, charismatic vertebrates, iguanas also represent excellent flagships for biodiversity conservation. To assist planning for invasive vertebrate management and thus benefit threatened iguana recovery, we identified all islands with known extant or extirpated populations of Critically Endangered and Endangered insular iguana taxa as recognized by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species. For each island, we determined total area, sovereignty, the presence of invasive alien vertebrates, and human population. For the 23 taxa of threatened insular iguanas we identified 230 populations, of which iguanas were extant on 185 islands and extirpated from 45 islands. Twenty-one iguana taxa (91% of all threatened insular iguana taxa) occurred on at least one island with invasive vertebrates present; 16 taxa had 100% of their population(s) on islands with invasive vertebrates present. Rodents, cats, ungulates, and dogs were the most common invasive vertebrates. We discuss biosecurity, eradication, and control of invasive vertebrates to benefit iguana recovery: (1) on islands already free of invasive vertebrates; (2) on islands with high iguana endemicity; and (3) for species and subspecies with small total populations occurring across multiple small islands. Our analyses provide an important first step toward understanding how invasive vertebrate management can be planned effectively to benefit threatened insular iguanas.

  8. Vascular Plant and Vertebrate Inventory of Chiricahua National Monument

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Powell, Brian F.; Schmidt, Cecilia A.; Halvorson, William L.; Anning, Pamela

    2009-01-01

    This report summarizes the results of the first comprehensive inventory of vascular plants and vertebrates at Chiricahua National Monument (NM) in Arizona. This project was part of a larger effort to inventory vascular plants and vertebrates in eight National Park Service units in the Sonoran Desert Network of parks in Arizona and New Mexico. In 2002, 2003, and 2004 we surveyed for plants and vertebrates (amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals) at Chiricahua NM to document the presence of species within the boundaries of the monument. Because we used repeatable study designs and standardized field methods, these inventories can serve as the first step in a biological monitoring program for the monument. This report is also the first summary of previous research from the monument and therefore it provides an important overview of survey efforts to date. We used data from our inventory and previous research to compile complete species lists for the monument and to assess inventory completeness. We recorded a total of 424 species, including 37 not previously found at the monument (Table 1). We found 10 species of non-native plants and one non-native mammal. Most non-native plants were found along the western boundary of the monument. Based on a review of our inventory and past research at the monument, there have been a total of 1,137 species of plants and vertebrates found at the monument. We believe the inventories of vascular plants and vertebrates are nearly complete and that the monument has one of the most complete inventories of any unit in the Sonoran Desert Network. The mammal community at the monument had the highest species richness (69 species) and the amphibian and reptile community was among the lowest species richness (33 species) of any park in the Sonoran Desert Network. Species richness of the plant and bird communities was intermediate. Among the important determinants of species richness for all groups is the geographic location of the monument

  9. Microarchitecture Influences Microdamage Accumulation in Human Vertebral Trabecular Bone

    PubMed Central

    Arlot, Monique E; Burt-Pichat, Brigitte; Roux, Jean-Paul; Vashishth, Deepak; Bouxsein, Mary L; Delmas, Pierre D

    2008-01-01

    It has been suggested that accumulation of microdamage with age contributes to skeletal fragility. However, data on the age-related increase in microdamage and the association between microdamage and trabecular microarchitecture in human vertebral cancellous bone are limited. We quantified microdamage in cancellous bone from human lumbar (L2) vertebral bodies obtained from 23 donors 54–93 yr of age (8 men and 15 women). Damage was measured using histologic techniques of sequential labeling with chelating agents and was related to 3D microarchitecture, as assessed by high-resolution μCT. There were no significant differences between sexes, although women tended to have a higher microcrack density (Cr.Dn) than men. Cr.Dn increased exponentially with age (r = 0.65, p < 0.001) and was correlated with bone volume fraction (BV/TV; r = −0.55; p < 0.01), trabecular number (Tb.N; r = −0.56 p = 0.008), structure model index (SMI; r = 0.59; p = 0.005), and trabecular separation (Tb.Sp; r = 0.59; p < 0.009). All architecture parameters were strongly correlated with each other and with BV/TV. Stepwise regression showed that SMI was the best predictor of microdamage, explaining 35% of the variance in Cr.Dn and 20% of the variance in diffuse damage accumulation. In addition, microcrack length was significantly greater in the highest versus lowest tertiles of SMI. In conclusion, in human vertebral cancellous bone, microdamage increases with age and is associated with low BV/TV and a rod-like trabecular architecture. PMID:18518771

  10. Paraspinal muscle control in people with osteoporotic vertebral fracture

    PubMed Central

    Greig, Alison M.; Hodges, Paul W.

    2007-01-01

    The high risk of sustaining subsequent vertebral fractures after an initial fracture cannot be explained solely by low bone mass. Extra-osseous factors, such as neuromuscular characteristics may help to explain this clinical dilemma. Elderly women with (n = 11) and without (n = 14) osteoporotic vertebral fractures performed rapid shoulder flexion to perturb the trunk while standing on a flat and short base. Neuromuscular postural responses of the paraspinal muscles at T6 and T12, and deep lumbar multifidus at L4 were recorded using intramuscular electromyography (EMG). Both groups demonstrated bursts of EMG that were initiated either before or shortly after the onset of shoulder flexion (P < 0.05). Paraspinal and multifidus onset occurred earlier in the non-fracture group (50–0 ms before deltoid onset) compared to the fracture group (25 ms before and 25 ms after deltoid onset) in the flat base condition. In the short base condition, EMG amplitude increased significantly above baseline earlier in the non-fracture group (75–25 ms before deltoid onset) compared to the fracture group (25–0 ms before deltoid onset) at T6 and T12; yet multifidus EMG increased above baseline earlier in the fracture group (50–25 ms before deltoid) compared to the non-fracture group (25–0 ms before deltoid). Time to reach maximum amplitude was shorter in the fracture group. Hypothetically, the longer time to initiate a postural response and shorter time to reach maximum amplitude in the fracture group may indicate a neuromuscular contribution towards subsequent fracture aetiology. This response could also be an adaptive characteristic of the central nervous system to minimise vertebral loading time. PMID:17203276

  11. Spatially explicit trends in the global conservation status of vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Rodrigues, Ana S L; Brooks, Thomas M; Butchart, Stuart H M; Chanson, Janice; Cox, Neil; Hoffmann, Michael; Stuart, Simon N

    2014-01-01

    The world's governments have committed to preventing the extinction of threatened species and improving their conservation status by 2020. However, biodiversity is not evenly distributed across space, and neither are the drivers of its decline, and so different regions face very different challenges. Here, we quantify the contribution of regions and countries towards recent global trends in vertebrate conservation status (as measured by the Red List Index), to guide action towards the 2020 target. We found that>50% of the global deterioration in the conservation status of birds, mammals and amphibians is concentrated in <1% of the surface area, 39/1098 ecoregions (4%) and eight/195 countries (4%) - Australia, China, Colombia, Ecuador, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico, and the United States. These countries hold a third of global diversity in these vertebrate groups, partially explaining why they concentrate most of the losses. Yet, other megadiverse countries - most notably Brazil (responsible for 10% of species but just 1% of deterioration), plus India and Madagascar - performed better in conserving their share of global vertebrate diversity. Very few countries, mostly island nations (e.g. Cook Islands, Fiji, Mauritius, Seychelles, and Tonga), have achieved net improvements. Per capita wealth does not explain these patterns, with two of the richest countries - United States and Australia - fairing conspicuously poorly. Different countries were affected by different combinations of threats. Reducing global rates of biodiversity loss will require investment in the regions and countries with the highest responsibility for the world's biodiversity, focusing on conserving those species and areas most in peril and on reducing the drivers with the highest impacts.

  12. Correlation Between Dental and Cervical Vertebral Maturation in Iranian Females

    PubMed Central

    Valizadeh, Solmaz; Eil, Nakissa; Ehsani, Sara; Bakhshandeh, Hooman

    2012-01-01

    Background Considerable variations in the development stage among patients of the same chronological age have led to introduce the concept of the developmental age based on the maturation of different organs such as cervical vertebrae or teeth. Objectives The purpose of this study was to investigate the correlation between the stages of tooth calcification and the cervical vertebral maturation in Iranian females. Patients and Methods Four hundred females (age range, 8 to 14 years) participated in the study. To determine the dental maturational stage, calcification of the mandibular teeth except for third molars were rated according to the method suggested by Demirjian et al. To evaluate the stage of skeletal maturation, cervical vertebral morphologic changes were assessed on lateral cephalometric radiographs according to the method explained by Baccetti et al. Correlations between bone maturation and teeth calcification were showed by Spearman's correlation and Kendall’s tau-b coefficients. The relevant associations were investigated by ordinal logistic regression models. Results Correlations between the two stages were observed in the first and second premolars, canine and central incisors. All these correlations were significant. The association between cervical vertebral maturation and tooth calcification was greatest in the lateral incisor (odds ratio (OR) = 11, 95% confidence interval (CI): 6.6-18.3). However, considering the 95% CI for OR, no significant difference was detected among the second molar, first molar and lateral incisor. Conclusion The relationship between calcification of teeth and maturation of cervical bones was significant. Bone maturation can be predicted by using teeth calcification stages, especially in the second molar, first molar and lateral incisor. PMID:23599706

  13. Vertebral classification using localized pathology-related shape model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zewail, R.; Elsafi, A.; Durdle, N.

    2008-03-01

    Radiographs of the spine are frequently examined for assessment of vertebral abnormalities. Features like osteophytes (bony growth of vertebra's corners), and disc space narrowing are often used as visual evidence of osteoarthris or degenerative joint disease. These symptoms result in remarkable changes in the shapes of the vertebral body. Statistical analysis of anatomical structure has recently gained increased popularity within the medical imaging community, since they have the potential to enhance the automated diagnosis process. In this paper, we present a novel method for computer-assisted vertebral classification using a localized, pathology-related shape model. The new classification scheme is able to assess the condition of multiple vertebrae simultaneously, hence is possible to directly classify the whole spine anatomy according to the condition of interest (anterior osteophites). At the core of this method is a new localized shape model that uses concepts of sparsity, dimension reduction, and statistical independence to extract sets of localized modes of deformations specific to each of the vertebrae under investigation. By projection of the shapes onto any specific set of deformation modes (or basis), we obtain low-dimensional features that are most directly related to the pathology of the vertebra of interest. These features are then used as input to a support vector machine classifier to classify the vertebra under investigation as normal or upnormal. Experiments are conducted using contours from digital x-ray images of five vertebrae of lumbar spine. The accuracy of the classification scheme is assessed using the ROC curves. An average specifity of 96.8 % is achieved with a sensitivity of 80 %.

  14. Spatially Explicit Trends in the Global Conservation Status of Vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Rodrigues, Ana S. L.; Brooks, Thomas M.; Butchart, Stuart H. M.; Chanson, Janice; Cox, Neil; Hoffmann, Michael; Stuart, Simon N.

    2014-01-01

    The world's governments have committed to preventing the extinction of threatened species and improving their conservation status by 2020. However, biodiversity is not evenly distributed across space, and neither are the drivers of its decline, and so different regions face very different challenges. Here, we quantify the contribution of regions and countries towards recent global trends in vertebrate conservation status (as measured by the Red List Index), to guide action towards the 2020 target. We found that>50% of the global deterioration in the conservation status of birds, mammals and amphibians is concentrated in <1% of the surface area, 39/1098 ecoregions (4%) and eight/195 countries (4%) – Australia, China, Colombia, Ecuador, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico, and the United States. These countries hold a third of global diversity in these vertebrate groups, partially explaining why they concentrate most of the losses. Yet, other megadiverse countries – most notably Brazil (responsible for 10% of species but just 1% of deterioration), plus India and Madagascar – performed better in conserving their share of global vertebrate diversity. Very few countries, mostly island nations (e.g. Cook Islands, Fiji, Mauritius, Seychelles, and Tonga), have achieved net improvements. Per capita wealth does not explain these patterns, with two of the richest countries – United States and Australia – fairing conspicuously poorly. Different countries were affected by different combinations of threats. Reducing global rates of biodiversity loss will require investment in the regions and countries with the highest responsibility for the world's biodiversity, focusing on conserving those species and areas most in peril and on reducing the drivers with the highest impacts. PMID:25426636

  15. Diversity and Community Composition of Vertebrates in Desert River Habitats.

    PubMed

    Free, C L; Baxter, G S; Dickman, C R; Lisle, A; Leung, L K-P

    2015-01-01

    Animal species are seldom distributed evenly at either local or larger spatial scales, and instead tend to aggregate in sites that meet their resource requirements and maximise fitness. This tendency is likely to be especially marked in arid regions where species could be expected to concentrate at resource-rich oases. In this study, we first test the hypothesis that productive riparian sites in arid Australia support higher vertebrate diversity than other desert habitats, and then elucidate the habitats selected by different species. We addressed the first aim by examining the diversity and composition of vertebrate assemblages inhabiting the Field River and adjacent sand dunes in the Simpson Desert, western Queensland, over a period of two and a half years. The second aim was addressed by examining species composition in riparian and sand dune habitats in dry and wet years. Vertebrate species richness was estimated to be highest (54 species) in the riverine habitats and lowest on the surrounding dune habitats (45 species). The riverine habitats had different species pools compared to the dune habitats. Several species, including the agamid Gowidon longirostris and tree frog Litoria rubella, inhabited the riverine habitats exclusively, while others such as the skinks Ctenotus ariadnae and C. dux were captured only in the dune habitats. The results suggest that, on a local scale, diversity is higher along riparian corridors and that riparian woodland is important for tree-dependent species. Further, the distribution of some species, such as Mus musculus, may be governed by environmental variables (e.g. soil moisture) associated with riparian corridors that are not available in the surrounding desert environment. We conclude that inland river systems may be often of high conservation value, and that management should be initiated where possible to alleviate threats to their continued functioning. PMID:26637127

  16. Phylogenetic analysis of vertebrate lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) multigene families.

    PubMed

    Li, Yi-Ju; Tsoi, Stephen C-M; Mannen, Hideyuka; Shoei-lung Li, Steven

    2002-05-01

    In this paper we analyzed 49 lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) sequences, mostly from vertebrates. The amino acid sequence differences were found to be larger for a human-killifish pair than a human-lamprey pair. This indicates that some protein sequence convergence may occur and reduce the sequence differences in distantly related species. We also examined transitions and transversions separately for several species pairs and found that the transitions tend to be saturated in the distantly related species pair, while transversions are increasing. We conclude that transversions maintain a conservative rate through the evolutionary time. Kimura's two-parameter model for multiple-hit correction on transversions only was used to derive a distance measure and then construct a neighbor-joining (NJ) tree. Three findings were revealed from the NJ tree: (i) the branching order of the tree is consistent with the common branch pattern of major vertebrates; (ii) Ldh-A and Ldh-B genes were duplicated near the origin of vertebrates; and (iii) Ldh-C and Ldh-A in mammals were produced by an independent gene duplication in early mammalian history. Furthermore, a relative rate test showed that mammalian Ldh-C evolved more rapidly than mammalian Ldh-A. Under a two-rate model, this duplication event was calibrated to be approximately 247 million years ago (mya), dating back to the Triassic period. Other gene duplication events were also discovered in Xenopus, the first duplication occurring approximately 60-70 mya in both Ldh-A and Ldh-B, followed by another recent gene duplication event, approximately 20 mya, in Ldh-B. PMID:11965434

  17. Phylogenetic analysis of vertebrate lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) multigene families.

    PubMed

    Li, Yi-Ju; Tsoi, Stephen C-M; Mannen, Hideyuka; Shoei-lung Li, Steven

    2002-05-01

    In this paper we analyzed 49 lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) sequences, mostly from vertebrates. The amino acid sequence differences were found to be larger for a human-killifish pair than a human-lamprey pair. This indicates that some protein sequence convergence may occur and reduce the sequence differences in distantly related species. We also examined transitions and transversions separately for several species pairs and found that the transitions tend to be saturated in the distantly related species pair, while transversions are increasing. We conclude that transversions maintain a conservative rate through the evolutionary time. Kimura's two-parameter model for multiple-hit correction on transversions only was used to derive a distance measure and then construct a neighbor-joining (NJ) tree. Three findings were revealed from the NJ tree: (i) the branching order of the tree is consistent with the common branch pattern of major vertebrates; (ii) Ldh-A and Ldh-B genes were duplicated near the origin of vertebrates; and (iii) Ldh-C and Ldh-A in mammals were produced by an independent gene duplication in early mammalian history. Furthermore, a relative rate test showed that mammalian Ldh-C evolved more rapidly than mammalian Ldh-A. Under a two-rate model, this duplication event was calibrated to be approximately 247 million years ago (mya), dating back to the Triassic period. Other gene duplication events were also discovered in Xenopus, the first duplication occurring approximately 60-70 mya in both Ldh-A and Ldh-B, followed by another recent gene duplication event, approximately 20 mya, in Ldh-B.

  18. Diversity and Community Composition of Vertebrates in Desert River Habitats.

    PubMed

    Free, C L; Baxter, G S; Dickman, C R; Lisle, A; Leung, L K-P

    2015-01-01

    Animal species are seldom distributed evenly at either local or larger spatial scales, and instead tend to aggregate in sites that meet their resource requirements and maximise fitness. This tendency is likely to be especially marked in arid regions where species could be expected to concentrate at resource-rich oases. In this study, we first test the hypothesis that productive riparian sites in arid Australia support higher vertebrate diversity than other desert habitats, and then elucidate the habitats selected by different species. We addressed the first aim by examining the diversity and composition of vertebrate assemblages inhabiting the Field River and adjacent sand dunes in the Simpson Desert, western Queensland, over a period of two and a half years. The second aim was addressed by examining species composition in riparian and sand dune habitats in dry and wet years. Vertebrate species richness was estimated to be highest (54 species) in the riverine habitats and lowest on the surrounding dune habitats (45 species). The riverine habitats had different species pools compared to the dune habitats. Several species, including the agamid Gowidon longirostris and tree frog Litoria rubella, inhabited the riverine habitats exclusively, while others such as the skinks Ctenotus ariadnae and C. dux were captured only in the dune habitats. The results suggest that, on a local scale, diversity is higher along riparian corridors and that riparian woodland is important for tree-dependent species. Further, the distribution of some species, such as Mus musculus, may be governed by environmental variables (e.g. soil moisture) associated with riparian corridors that are not available in the surrounding desert environment. We conclude that inland river systems may be often of high conservation value, and that management should be initiated where possible to alleviate threats to their continued functioning.

  19. Spatially explicit trends in the global conservation status of vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Rodrigues, Ana S L; Brooks, Thomas M; Butchart, Stuart H M; Chanson, Janice; Cox, Neil; Hoffmann, Michael; Stuart, Simon N

    2014-01-01

    The world's governments have committed to preventing the extinction of threatened species and improving their conservation status by 2020. However, biodiversity is not evenly distributed across space, and neither are the drivers of its decline, and so different regions face very different challenges. Here, we quantify the contribution of regions and countries towards recent global trends in vertebrate conservation status (as measured by the Red List Index), to guide action towards the 2020 target. We found that>50% of the global deterioration in the conservation status of birds, mammals and amphibians is concentrated in <1% of the surface area, 39/1098 ecoregions (4%) and eight/195 countries (4%) - Australia, China, Colombia, Ecuador, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico, and the United States. These countries hold a third of global diversity in these vertebrate groups, partially explaining why they concentrate most of the losses. Yet, other megadiverse countries - most notably Brazil (responsible for 10% of species but just 1% of deterioration), plus India and Madagascar - performed better in conserving their share of global vertebrate diversity. Very few countries, mostly island nations (e.g. Cook Islands, Fiji, Mauritius, Seychelles, and Tonga), have achieved net improvements. Per capita wealth does not explain these patterns, with two of the richest countries - United States and Australia - fairing conspicuously poorly. Different countries were affected by different combinations of threats. Reducing global rates of biodiversity loss will require investment in the regions and countries with the highest responsibility for the world's biodiversity, focusing on conserving those species and areas most in peril and on reducing the drivers with the highest impacts. PMID:25426636

  20. Threats from climate change to terrestrial vertebrate hotspots in Europe.

    PubMed

    Maiorano, Luigi; Amori, Giovanni; Capula, Massimo; Falcucci, Alessandra; Masi, Monica; Montemaggiori, Alessandro; Pottier, Julien; Psomas, Achilleas; Rondinini, Carlo; Russo, Danilo; Zimmermann, Niklaus E; Boitani, Luigi; Guisan, Antoine

    2013-01-01

    We identified hotspots of terrestrial vertebrate species diversity in Europe and adjacent islands. Moreover, we assessed the extent to which by the end of the 21(st) century such hotspots will be exposed to average monthly temperature and precipitation patterns which can be regarded as extreme if compared to the climate experienced during 1950-2000. In particular, we considered the entire European sub-continent plus Turkey and a total of 1149 species of terrestrial vertebrates. For each species, we developed species-specific expert-based distribution models (validated against field data) which we used to calculate species richness maps for mammals, breeding birds, amphibians, and reptiles. Considering four global circulation model outputs and three emission scenarios, we generated an index of risk of exposure to extreme climates, and we used a bivariate local Moran's I to identify the areas with a significant association between hotspots of diversity and high risk of exposure to extreme climates. Our results outline that the Mediterranean basin represents both an important hotspot for biodiversity and especially for threatened species for all taxa. In particular, the Iberian and Italian peninsulas host particularly high species richness as measured over all groups, while the eastern Mediterranean basin is particularly rich in amphibians and reptiles; the islands (both Macaronesian and Mediterranean) host the highest richness of threatened species for all taxa occurs. Our results suggest that the main hotspots of biodiversity for terrestrial vertebrates may be extensively influenced by the climate change projected to occur over the coming decades, especially in the Mediterranean bioregion, posing serious concerns for biodiversity conservation.

  1. Threats from Climate Change to Terrestrial Vertebrate Hotspots in Europe

    PubMed Central

    Maiorano, Luigi; Amori, Giovanni; Capula, Massimo; Falcucci, Alessandra; Masi, Monica; Montemaggiori, Alessandro; Pottier, Julien; Psomas, Achilleas; Rondinini, Carlo; Russo, Danilo; Zimmermann, Niklaus E.

    2013-01-01

    We identified hotspots of terrestrial vertebrate species diversity in Europe and adjacent islands. Moreover, we assessed the extent to which by the end of the 21st century such hotspots will be exposed to average monthly temperature and precipitation patterns which can be regarded as extreme if compared to the climate experienced during 1950-2000. In particular, we considered the entire European sub-continent plus Turkey and a total of 1149 species of terrestrial vertebrates. For each species, we developed species-specific expert-based distribution models (validated against field data) which we used to calculate species richness maps for mammals, breeding birds, amphibians, and reptiles. Considering four global circulation model outputs and three emission scenarios, we generated an index of risk of exposure to extreme climates, and we used a bivariate local Moran’s I to identify the areas with a significant association between hotspots of diversity and high risk of exposure to extreme climates. Our results outline that the Mediterranean basin represents both an important hotspot for biodiversity and especially for threatened species for all taxa. In particular, the Iberian and Italian peninsulas host particularly high species richness as measured over all groups, while the eastern Mediterranean basin is particularly rich in amphibians and reptiles; the islands (both Macaronesian and Mediterranean) host the highest richness of threatened species for all taxa occurs. Our results suggest that the main hotspots of biodiversity for terrestrial vertebrates may be extensively influenced by the climate change projected to occur over the coming decades, especially in the Mediterranean bioregion, posing serious concerns for biodiversity conservation. PMID:24066162

  2. Diversity and Community Composition of Vertebrates in Desert River Habitats

    PubMed Central

    Free, C. L.; Baxter, G. S.; Dickman, C. R.; Lisle, A.; Leung, L. K.-P.

    2015-01-01

    Animal species are seldom distributed evenly at either local or larger spatial scales, and instead tend to aggregate in sites that meet their resource requirements and maximise fitness. This tendency is likely to be especially marked in arid regions where species could be expected to concentrate at resource-rich oases. In this study, we first test the hypothesis that productive riparian sites in arid Australia support higher vertebrate diversity than other desert habitats, and then elucidate the habitats selected by different species. We addressed the first aim by examining the diversity and composition of vertebrate assemblages inhabiting the Field River and adjacent sand dunes in the Simpson Desert, western Queensland, over a period of two and a half years. The second aim was addressed by examining species composition in riparian and sand dune habitats in dry and wet years. Vertebrate species richness was estimated to be highest (54 species) in the riverine habitats and lowest on the surrounding dune habitats (45 species). The riverine habitats had different species pools compared to the dune habitats. Several species, including the agamid Gowidon longirostris and tree frog Litoria rubella, inhabited the riverine habitats exclusively, while others such as the skinks Ctenotus ariadnae and C. dux were captured only in the dune habitats. The results suggest that, on a local scale, diversity is higher along riparian corridors and that riparian woodland is important for tree-dependent species. Further, the distribution of some species, such as Mus musculus, may be governed by environmental variables (e.g. soil moisture) associated with riparian corridors that are not available in the surrounding desert environment. We conclude that inland river systems may be often of high conservation value, and that management should be initiated where possible to alleviate threats to their continued functioning. PMID:26637127

  3. Post-Translational Modifications of Histones in Vertebrate Neurogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Mitrousis, Nikolaos; Tropepe, Vincent; Hermanson, Ola

    2015-01-01

    The process of neurogenesis, through which the entire nervous system of an organism is formed, has attracted immense scientific attention for decades. How can a single neural stem cell give rise to astrocytes, oligodendrocytes, and neurons? Furthermore, how is a neuron led to choose between the hundreds of different neuronal subtypes that the vertebrate CNS contains? Traditionally, niche signals and transcription factors have been on the spotlight. Recent research is increasingly demonstrating that the answer may partially lie in epigenetic regulation of gene expression. In this article, we comprehensively review the role of post-translational histone modifications in neurogenesis in both the embryonic and adult CNS. PMID:26733796

  4. Vertebral compression fracture after stereotactic body radiotherapy for spinal metastases.

    PubMed

    Sahgal, Arjun; Whyne, Cari M; Ma, Lijun; Larson, David A; Fehlings, Michael G

    2013-07-01

    The use of stereotactic body radiotherapy for metastatic spinal tumours is increasing. Serious adverse events for this treatment include vertebral compression fracture (VCF) and radiation myelopathy. Although VCF is a fairly low-risk adverse event (approximately 5% risk) after conventional radiotherapy, crude risk estimates for VCF after spinal SBRT range from 11% to 39%. In this Review, we summarise the evidence and predictive factors for VCF induced by spinal SBRT, review the pathophysiology of VCF in the metastatic spine, and discuss strategies used to prevent and manage this potentially disabling complication. PMID:23816297

  5. Axial dynamics during locomotion in vertebrates lesson from the salamander.

    PubMed

    Cabelguen, Jean-Marie; Ijspeert, Auke; Lamarque, Stéphanie; Ryczko, Dimitri

    2010-01-01

    Much of what we know about the flexibility of the locomotor networks in vertebrates is derived from studies examining the adaptation of limb movements during stepping in various conditions. However, the body movements play important roles during locomotion: they produce the thrust during undulatory locomotion and they help to increase the stride length during legged locomotion. In this chapter, we review our current knowledge about the flexibility in the neuronal circuits controlling the body musculature during locomotion. We focus especially on salamander because, as an amphibian, this animal is able to display a rich repertoire of aquatic and terrestrial locomotor modes.

  6. [Venomous and poisonous animals. IV. Envenomations by venomous aquatic vertebrates].

    PubMed

    Bédry, R; De Haro, L

    2007-04-01

    Epidemiological information on marine envenomation is generally less extensive in Europe than in tropical regions where these injuries are more severe and the need for medical advice is more frequent. For these reasons use of regional Poison Control Centers in the area where the injury occurs must be encouraged. The purpose of this review is to describe envenomation by bony fish (lion fish, stone fish, and catfish), cartilaginous fish (stingrays and poisonous sharks), or other venomous aquatic vertebrates (moray-eels and marine snakes). Understanding of these envenomation syndromes is important not only in tropical areas but also in Europe where importation of dangerous species has increased in recent years. PMID:17691425

  7. Vertebral Metastasis as the Initial Manifestation of Colon Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Jain, Tushina; Williams, Renee; Liechty, Benjamin

    2016-01-01

    Oncology guidelines currently recommend against performing colonoscopies in the workup of adenocarcinoma of unknown primary unless colonic malignancy is otherwise suggested by clinical signs or symptoms. We present 2 cases of metastatic colonic adenocarcinoma that presented only with neurologic symptoms from vertebral metastasis. Although bony metastases are a rare presentation of colon cancer and colonoscopy is not warranted in the initial workup of adenocarcinoma of unknown primary, we describe these cases as a reminder that bony metastases do not rule out a colon cancer diagnosis. PMID:27807574

  8. [Venomous and poisonous animals. IV. Envenomations by venomous aquatic vertebrates].

    PubMed

    Bédry, R; De Haro, L

    2007-04-01

    Epidemiological information on marine envenomation is generally less extensive in Europe than in tropical regions where these injuries are more severe and the need for medical advice is more frequent. For these reasons use of regional Poison Control Centers in the area where the injury occurs must be encouraged. The purpose of this review is to describe envenomation by bony fish (lion fish, stone fish, and catfish), cartilaginous fish (stingrays and poisonous sharks), or other venomous aquatic vertebrates (moray-eels and marine snakes). Understanding of these envenomation syndromes is important not only in tropical areas but also in Europe where importation of dangerous species has increased in recent years.

  9. Vertebrate Paralogous MEF2 Genes: Origin, Conservation, and Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Wenwu; de Folter, Stefan; Shen, Xia; Zhang, Wenqian; Tao, Shiheng

    2011-01-01

    Background The myocyte enhancer factor 2 (MEF2) gene family is broadly expressed during the development and maintenance of muscle cells. Although a great deal has been elucidated concerning MEF2 transcription factors' regulation of specific gene expression in diverse programs and adaptive responses, little is known about the origin and evolution of the four members of the MEF2 gene family in vertebrates. Methodology/Principal Findings By phylogenetic analyses, we investigated the origin, conservation, and evolution of the four MEF2 genes. First, among the four MEF2 paralogous branches, MEF2B is clearly distant from the other three branches in vertebrates, mainly because it lacks the HJURP_C (Holliday junction recognition protein C-terminal) region. Second, three duplication events might have occurred to produce the four MEF2 paralogous genes and the latest duplication event occurred near the origin of vertebrates producing MEF2A and MEF2C. Third, the ratio (Ka/Ks) of non-synonymous to synonymous nucleotide substitution rates showed that MEF2B evolves faster than the other three MEF2 proteins despite purifying selection on all of the four MEF2 branches. Moreover, a pair model of M0 versus M3 showed that variable selection exists among MEF2 proteins, and branch-site analysis presented that sites 53 and 64 along the MEF2B branch are under positive selection. Finally, and interestingly, substitution rates showed that type II MADS genes (i.e., MEF2-like genes) evolve as slowly as type I MADS genes (i.e., SRF-like genes) in animals, which is inconsistent with the fact that type II MADS genes evolve much slower than type I MADS genes in plants. Conclusion Our findings shed light on the relationship of MEF2A, B, C, and D with functional conservation and evolution in vertebrates. This study provides a rationale for future experimental design to investigate distinct but overlapping regulatory roles of the four MEF2 genes in various tissues. PMID:21394201

  10. Comparative promoter analysis in vertebrate genomes with the CORG workbench.

    PubMed

    Dieterich, Christoph; Vingron, Martin

    2006-01-01

    CORG is a versatile web-based workbench for comparative promoter analysis in vertebrate model organisms. Two kinds of information are explicitly considered in the automated annotation process. First, local conservation patterns in upstream regions of homologous genes: These phylogenetic footprints are likely to stem from sequence elements that are under selective pressure. The CORG pipeline detects and exploits patterns of local similarity to annotate promoter regions. Second, experimental data on transcription start sites: exon positions and DNA binding site descriptions complete the promoter annotation. These data are made available via an interactive web portal. Individual promoter studies are supported by a JAVA applet that supplies all data down to the nucleotide level.

  11. Altered disc pressure profile after an osteoporotic vertebral fracture is a risk factor for adjacent vertebral body fracture.

    PubMed

    Tzermiadianos, Michael N; Renner, Susan M; Phillips, Frank M; Hadjipavlou, Alexander G; Zindrick, Michael R; Havey, Robert M; Voronov, Michael; Patwardhan, Avinash G

    2008-11-01

    This study investigated the effect of endplate deformity after an osteoporotic vertebral fracture in increasing the risk for adjacent vertebral fractures. Eight human lower thoracic or thoracolumbar specimens, each consisting of five vertebrae were used. To selectively fracture one of the endplates of the middle VB of each specimen a void was created under the target endplate and the specimen was flexed and compressed until failure. The fractured vertebra was subjected to spinal extension under 150 N preload that restored the anterior wall height and vertebral kyphosis, while the fractured endplate remained significantly depressed. The VB was filled with cement to stabilize the fracture, after complete evacuation of its trabecular content to ensure similar cement distribution under both the endplates. Specimens were tested in flexion-extension under 400 N preload while pressure in the discs and strain at the anterior wall of the adjacent vertebrae were recorded. Disc pressure in the intact specimens increased during flexion by 26 +/- 14%. After cementation, disc pressure increased during flexion by 15 +/- 11% in the discs with un-fractured endplates, while decreased by 19 +/- 26.7% in the discs with the fractured endplates. During flexion, the compressive strain at the anterior wall of the vertebra next to the fractured endplate increased by 94 +/- 23% compared to intact status (p < 0.05), while it did not significantly change at the vertebra next to the un-fractured endplate (18.2 +/- 7.1%, p > 0.05). Subsequent flexion with compression to failure resulted in adjacent fracture close to the fractured endplate in six specimens and in a non-adjacent fracture in one specimen, while one specimen had no adjacent fractures. Depression of the fractured endplate alters the pressure profile of the damaged disc resulting in increased compressive loading of the anterior wall of adjacent vertebra that predisposes it to wedge fracture. This data suggests that correction of

  12. The genetic landscape and clinical implications of vertebral anomalies in VACTERL association

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yixin; Liu, Zhenlei; Chen, Jia; Zuo, Yuzhi; Liu, Sen; Chen, Weisheng; Liu, Gang; Qiu, Guixing; Giampietro, Philip F; Wu, Nan; Wu, Zhihong

    2016-01-01

    VACTERL association is a condition comprising multisystem congenital malformations, causing severe physical disability in affected individuals. It is typically defined by the concurrence of at least three of the following component features: vertebral anomalies (V), anal atresia (A), cardiac malformations (C), tracheo-oesophageal fistula (TE), renal dysplasia (R) and limb abnormalities (L). Vertebral anomaly is one of the most important and common defects that has been reported in approximately 60–95% of all VACTERL patients. Recent breakthroughs have suggested that genetic factors play an important role in VACTERL association, especially in those with vertebral phenotypes. In this review, we summarised the genetic studies of the VACTERL association, especially focusing on the genetic aetiology of patients with vertebral anomalies. Furthermore, genetic reports of other syndromes with vertebral phenotypes overlapping with VACTERL association are also included. We aim to provide a further understanding of the genetic aetiology and a better evidence for genetic diagnosis of the association and vertebral anomalies. PMID:27084730

  13. Diverse of Erythropoiesis Responding to Hypoxia and Low Environmental Temperature in Vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Maekawa, Shun; Kato, Takashi

    2015-01-01

    Erythrocytes are responsible for transporting oxygen to tissue and are essential for the survival of almost all vertebrate animals. Circulating erythrocyte counts are tightly regulated and respond to erythrocyte mass and oxygen tension. Since the discovery of erythropoietin, the erythropoietic responses to environment and tissue oxygen tension have been investigated in mice and human. Moreover, it has recently become increasingly clear that various environmental stresses could induce the erythropoiesis via various modulating systems, while all vertebrates live in various environments and habitually adapt to environmental stress. Therefore, it is considered that investigations of erythropoiesis in vertebrates provide a lead to the various erythropoietic responses to environmental stress. This paper comparatively introduces the present understanding of erythropoiesis in vertebrates. Indeed, there is a wide range of variations in vertebrates' erythropoiesis. This paper also focused on erythropoietic responses to environmental stress, hypoxia, and lowered temperature in vertebrates. PMID:26557695

  14. The genetic landscape and clinical implications of vertebral anomalies in VACTERL association.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yixin; Liu, Zhenlei; Chen, Jia; Zuo, Yuzhi; Liu, Sen; Chen, Weisheng; Liu, Gang; Qiu, Guixing; Giampietro, Philip F; Wu, Nan; Wu, Zhihong

    2016-07-01

    VACTERL association is a condition comprising multisystem congenital malformations, causing severe physical disability in affected individuals. It is typically defined by the concurrence of at least three of the following component features: vertebral anomalies (V), anal atresia (A), cardiac malformations (C), tracheo-oesophageal fistula (TE), renal dysplasia (R) and limb abnormalities (L). Vertebral anomaly is one of the most important and common defects that has been reported in approximately 60-95% of all VACTERL patients. Recent breakthroughs have suggested that genetic factors play an important role in VACTERL association, especially in those with vertebral phenotypes. In this review, we summarised the genetic studies of the VACTERL association, especially focusing on the genetic aetiology of patients with vertebral anomalies. Furthermore, genetic reports of other syndromes with vertebral phenotypes overlapping with VACTERL association are also included. We aim to provide a further understanding of the genetic aetiology and a better evidence for genetic diagnosis of the association and vertebral anomalies. PMID:27084730

  15. Mensuration of cervical vertebral ratios in Doberman pinschers and Great Danes.

    PubMed

    Drost, Wm Tod; Lehenbauer, Terry W; Reeves, Jeff

    2002-01-01

    Canine cervical vertebral instability is a complex syndrome involving cervical spinal cord compressive lesions. Doberman pinschers and Great Danes are the most commonly affected breeds. Measurements of vertebral canal diameter (VCD), vertebral body height (H), and vertebral body length (L) were made from C3-C7 in 24 Doberman pinschers and 8 Great Danes by using digital and analog techniques. Significant differences between affected and unaffected sites were noted for Doberman pinschers at C6 (P = 0.039) and C7 (P = 0.027) using analog measurements of VCD/H, and Great Danes at C6 using analog (P = 0.041) and digital (P = 0.004) measurements of VCD/L. Cervical vertebral ratios have potential as a breed-specific screening tool for cervical vertebral instability and warrant longitudinal studies.

  16. Is vertebral artery hypoplasia a predisposing factor for posterior circulation cerebral ischemic events? A comprehensive review.

    PubMed

    Katsanos, Aristeidis H; Kosmidou, Maria; Kyritsis, Athanassios P; Giannopoulos, Sotirios

    2013-01-01

    Vertebral artery hypoplasia is not currently considered an independent risk factor for stroke. Emerging evidence suggest that vertebral artery hypoplasia may contribute to posterior circulation ischemic events, especially when other risk factors coexist. In the present literature review, we present published data to discuss the relationship between a hypoplastic vertebral artery and posterior circulation cerebral ischemia. Despite difficulties and controversies in the accurate definition and prevalence estimation of vertebral artery hypoplasia, ultrasound studies reveal that the reduced blood flow observed ipsilateral to the hypoplastic vertebral artery may result in local cerebral hypoperfusion and subsequent focal neurological symptomatology. That risk of cerebral ischemia is related to the severity of the hypoplasia, suggesting that the smaller of paired arteries are more vulnerable to occlusion. Existing cohort studies further support clinical observations that hypoplastic vertebral artery enhances synergistically the vascular risk for posterior circulation ischemic events and is closely associated with both atherosclerotic and prothrombotic processes.

  17. Vertebral sarcoidosis: demonstration of bone involvement by computerized axial tomography

    SciTech Connect

    Dinerstein, S.L.; Kovarsky, J.

    1984-08-01

    A report is given of a rare case of vertebral sarcoidosis with negative conventional spinal x-ray films, yet with typical cystic lesions of the spine found incidentally during abdominal computerized axial tomography (CAT). The patient was a 28-year-old black man, who was admitted for evaluation of a 1 1/2-year history of diffuse myalgias, intermittent fever to 102 F orally, bilateral hilar adenopathy, and leukopenia. A technetium polyphosphate bone scan revealed diffuse areas of increased uptake over the sternum, entire vertebral column, and pelvis. Conventional x-ray films of the cervical, thoracic, and lumbar spine, and an AP view of the pelvis were all normal. Chest x-ray film revealed only bilateral hilar adenopathy. During the course of an extensive negative evaluation for infection, an abdominal CAT scan was done, showing multiple, small, sclerotic-rimmed cysts at multiple levels of the lower thoracic and lumbar spine. Bone marrow biopsy revealed only changes consistent with anemia of chronic disease. Mediastinal lymph node biopsy revealed noncaseating granulomas. A tentative diagnosis of sarcoidosis was made, and treatment with prednisone, isoniazid and rifampin was begun. Within two weeks of initiation of prednisone therapy, the patient was symptom-free. A repeat technetium polyphosphate bone scan revealed only a small residual area of mildly increased uptake over the upper thoracic vertebrae.

  18. Climate change, extinction risks, and reproduction of terrestrial vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Carey, Cynthia

    2014-01-01

    This review includes a broad, but superficial, summary of our understanding about current and future climate changes, the predictions about how these changes will likely affect the risks of extinction of organisms, and how current climate changes are already affecting reproduction in terrestrial vertebrates. Many organisms have become extinct in the last century, but habitat destruction, disease and man-made factors other than climate change have been implicated as the causal factor in almost all of these. Reproduction is certain to be negatively impacted in all vertebrate groups for a variety of reasons, such as direct thermal and hydric effects on mortality of embryos, mismatches between optimal availability of food supplies, frequently determined by temperature, and reproductive capacities, sometimes determined by rigid factors such as photoperiod, and disappearance of appropriate foraging opportunities, such as melting sea ice. The numbers of studies documenting correlations between climate changes and biological phenomena are rapidly increasing, but more direct information about the consequences of these changes for species survival and ecosystem health is needed than is currently available.

  19. The vertebral column of the Regourdou 1 Neandertal.

    PubMed

    Gómez-Olivencia, Asier; Couture-Veschambre, Christine; Madelaine, Stéphane; Maureille, Bruno

    2013-06-01

    The Regourdou 1 partial skeleton was found in 1957 in level IV of the eponymous site located in Montignac-sur-Vézère (Dordogne, France) and until now it has been only partially published. The ongoing revision of the faunal remains from the site has yielded additional fossils that pertain to this skeleton. Here we study the vertebral column of this individual, providing for the first time detailed descriptions for all of the fossils and reassessing the anatomical position of all of the fragments. The vertebral column of Regourdou 1 is one of the most complete in the Neandertal fossil record with at least 20 pre-sacral vertebrae (seven cervicals, nine thoracic and four lumbars), a partial sacrum and a fragmentary first coccygeal vertebra. When compared with modern humans, the vertebrae of Regourdou 1 display significant metric differences, and fit well within the range of Neandertal variability. A preliminary analysis of the most complete thoracic vertebrae of this individual indicates that Neandertals displayed significant differences from modern humans in the thoracic spine, which adds to the differences already observed in the cervical and lumbar regions. Finally, we have also observed mild signs of osteoarthrosis, albeit to a lower degree of that present in other Neandertals such as La Chapelle-aux-Saints, La Ferrassie 1 or Shanidar 3. This is consistent with the younger adult age for Regourdou 1. PMID:23566460

  20. Reversible neuronal and muscular toxicity of caffeine in developing vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Rodriguez, Rufino S; Haugen, Rebecca; Rueber, Alexandra; Huang, Cheng-Chen

    2014-06-01

    This study utilizes zebrafish embryos to understand the cellular and molecular mechanisms of caffeine toxicity in developing vertebrate embryos. By using a high concentration of caffeine, we observed almost all the phenotypes that have been described in humans and/or in other animal models, including neural tube closure defect, jittery, touch insensitivity, and growth retardation as well as a drastic coiled body phenotype. Zebrafish embryos exposed to 5mM caffeine exhibited high frequent movement, 10 moves/min comparing with around 3 moves/min in control embryos, within half an hour post exposure (HPE). They later showed twitching, uncoordinated movement, and eventually severe body curvature by 6HPE. Exposure at later stages resulted in the same phenotypes but more posteriorly. Surprisingly, when caffeine was removed before 6HPE, the embryos were capable of recovering but still exhibited mild curvature and shorter bodies. Longer exposure caused irreversible body curvature and lethality. These results suggest that caffeine likely targets the neuro-muscular physiology in developing embryos. Immunohistochemistry revealed that the motorneurons in treated embryos developed shorter axons, abnormal branching, and excessive synaptic vesicles. Developing skeletal muscles also appeared smaller and lacked the well-defined boundaries seen in control embryos. Finally, caffeine increases the expression of genes involved in synaptic vesicle migration. In summary, our results provide molecular understanding of caffeine toxicity on developing vertebrate embryos.