245 Works

Effects of taphonomic deformation on geometric morphometric analysis of fossils: a case study using the dicynodont Diictodon feliceps (Therapsida, Anomodontia)

Christian Kammerer, Michol Deutsch, Jacqueline Lungmus & Kenneth Angielczyk
Taphonomic deformation, the distortion of fossils as a result of geological processes, poses problems for the use of geometric morphometrics in addressing paleobiological questions. Signal from biological variation, such as ontogenetic trends and sexual dimorphism, may be lost if variation from deformation is too high. Here, we investigate the effects of taphonomic deformation on geometric morphometric analyses of the abundant, well known Permian therapsid Diictodon feliceps. Distorted Diictodon crania can be categorized into seven typical...

Divergence, gene flow and the origin of leapfrog geographic distributions: the history of color pattern variation in Phyllobates poison-dart frogs

Roberto Márquez, Tyler Linderoth, Daniel Mejía-Vargas, Rasmus Nielsen, Adolfo Amézquita & Marcus Kronforst
The geographic distribution of phenotypic variation among closely related populations is a valuable source of information about the evolutionary processes that generate and maintain biodiversity. Leapfrog distributions, in which phenotypically similar populations are disjunctly distributed and separated by one or more phenotypically distinct populations, represent geographic replicates for the existence of a phenotype, and are therefore especially informative. Phyllobates poison frogs. We found evidence for high levels of gene flow between neighboring populations but not...

Data from: Integration of genomics and transcriptomics predicts diabetic retinopathy susceptibility genes

Andrew Skol, Segun Jung, Ana Marija Sokovic, Siquan Chen, Sarah Fazal, Olukayode Sosina, Poulami Borkar, Amy Lin, Maria Sverdlov, Dingcai Cao, Anand Swaroop, Ionut Bebu, Barbara Stranger & Michael Grassi
We determined differential gene expression in response to high glucose in lymphoblastoid cell lines derived from matched individuals with type 1 diabetes with and without retinopathy. Those genes exhibiting the largest difference in glucose response were assessed for association to diabetic retinopathy in a genome-wide association study meta-analysis. Expression Quantitative Trait Loci (eQTLs) of the glucose response genes were tested for association with diabetic retinopathy. We detected an enrichment of the eQTLs from the glucose...

Ecological limits as the driver of bird species richness patterns along the east Himalayan elevational gradient

Trevor Price, Matthew Schumm, Alex White & K Supriya
Variation in species richness across environmental gradients results from a combination of historical non-equilibrium processes (time, speciation, extinction) and present-day differences in environmental carrying capacities (i.e., ecological limits, affected by species interactions and the abundance and diversity of resources). In a study of bird richness along the sub-tropical east Himalayan elevational gradient, we test the prediction that species richness patterns are consistent with ecological limits using data on morphology, phylogeny, elevational distribution, and arthropod resources....

Supplemental figures from: Role of the thyroid gland in expression of the thyroid phenotype of SBP2 deficient mice

Alexandra Dumitrescu
Selenocysteine insertion sequence binding protein 2, SBP2 (SECISBP2), is required for selenoprotein synthesis. Partial SBP2 deficiency syndrome manifests characteristic thyroid function tests. The Sbp2 deficiency mouse model, Sbp2 iCKO, replicates this thyroid phenotype and was used for pathophysiologic investigations. As selenoproteins have antioxidative role in thyroid gland function, their deficiencies have potential to affect thyroid hormone (TH) synthesis. Sbp2 iCKO mice had larger thyroids relative to body weight and increased thyroidal T4 and T3 content...

Data from: Differential drivers of benthic foraminiferal and molluscan community composition from a multivariate record of Early Miocene environmental change

Christina L. Belanger & Marites Villarosa Garcia
Climate changes are multivariate in nature, and disentangling the proximal drivers of biotic responses to paleoclimate events requires time series of multiple environmental proxies. We reconstruct a multivariate time series of local environmental change for the early Miocene Newport Member of the Astoria Formation (20.26–18 Ma), using proxies for temperature (δ18O), productivity (δ13C), organic carbon flux (Δδ13C), oxygenation (δ15N), and sedimentary grain size (% mud). Our data suggest increases in productivity and declines in oxygenation...

Data from: Energetic benefits and adaptations in mammalian limbs: scale effects and selective pressures

Brandon M. Kilbourne & Louwrens C. Hoffman
Differences in limb size and shape are fundamental to mammalian morphological diversity; however, their relevance to locomotor costs has long been subject to debate. In particular, it remains unknown if scale effects in whole limb morphology could partially underlie decreasing mass-specific locomotor costs with increasing limb length. Whole fore- and hindlimb inertial properties reflecting limb size and shape – moment of inertia (MOI), mass, mass distribution, and natural frequency – were regressed against limb length...

Data from: Genetic subdivision and candidate genes under selection in North American gray wolves

Rena M. Schweizer, Bridgett M. VonHoldt, Ryan Harrigan, James C. Knowles, Marco Musiani, David Coltman, John Novembre & Robert K. Wayne
Previous genetic studies of the highly mobile gray wolf (Canis lupus) found population structure that coincides with habitat and phenotype differences. We hypothesized that these ecologically distinct populations (ecotypes) should exhibit signatures of selection in genes related to morphology, coat color, and metabolism. To test these predictions, we quantified population structure related to habitat using a genotyping array to assess variation in 42,036 SNPs in 111 North American gray wolves. Using these SNP data and...

Data from: A nutrient-driven tRNA modification alters translational fidelity and genome-wide protein coding across an animal genus

John M. Zaborske, Vanessa L. Bauer-DuMont, Edward W. J. Wallace, Tao Pan, Charles F. Aquadro, David Allan Drummond & Vanessa L. Bauer DuMont
Natural selection favors efficient expression of encoded proteins, but the causes, mechanisms, and fitness consequences of evolved coding changes remain an area of aggressive inquiry. We report a large-scale reversal in the relative translational accuracy of codons across 12 fly species in the Drosophila/Sophophora genus. Because the reversal involves pairs of codons that are read by the same genomically encoded tRNAs, we hypothesize, and show by direct measurement, that a tRNA anticodon modification from guanosine...

Data from: Transformation of stimulus correlations by the retina

Kristina D. Simmons, Jason S. Prentice, Gašper Tkačik, Jan Homann, Heather K. Yee, Stephanie E. Palmer, Philip C. Nelson & Vijay Balasubramanian
Redundancies and correlations in the responses of sensory neurons may seem to waste neural resources, but they can also carry cues about structured stimuli and may help the brain to correct for response errors. To investigate the effect of stimulus structure on redundancy in retina, we measured simultaneous responses from populations of retinal ganglion cells presented with natural and artificial stimuli that varied greatly in correlation structure; these stimuli and recordings are publicly available online....

Data from: Molecular phylogeny and symbiotic selectivity of the green algal genus Dictyochloropsis sensu lato (Trebouxiophyceae): a polyphyletic and widespread group forming photobiont-mediated guilds in the lichen family Lobariaceae

Francesco Dal Grande, Andreas Beck, Carolina Cornejo, Garima Singh, Saran Cheenacharoen, Matthew P. Nelsen & Christoph Scheidegger
Dictyochloropsis s.l. is an ecologically important, common but little-studied genus of green algae. Here, we examined the diversity and host selectivity of algae attributed to this genus at both species-to-species and species-to-community levels. We conducted a molecular investigation of 15 cultured strains and several lichen photobionts, using 18S rRNA, rbcL and ITS sequence data. We further used seven alga-specific microsatellite markers to study algal sharing among fungi of the family Lobariaceae in two populations in...

Data from: The tempo of trait divergence in geographic isolation: avian speciation across the Marañon valley of Peru

Benjamin M. Winger & John M. Bates
Geographic isolation is considered essential to most speciation events, but our understanding of what controls the pace and degree of phenotypic divergence among allopatric populations remains poor. Why do some taxa exhibit phenotypic differentiation across barriers to dispersal, whereas others do not? To test factors controlling phenotypic divergence in allopatry, we employed a comparative phylogeographic approach consisting of replicates of ecologically similar Andean bird species isolated across a major biogeographic barrier, the Marañon valley of...

Data from: Rates of karyotypic evolution in Estrildid finches differ between island and continental clades

Daniel M. Hooper & Trevor Douglas Price
Reasons why chromosomal rearrangements spread to fixation and frequently distinguish related taxa remain poorly understood. We used cytological descriptions of karyotype to identify large pericentric inversions between species of Estrildid finches (family Estrildidae) and a time-dated phylogeny to assess the genomic, geographic, and phylogenetic context of karyotype evolution in this group. Inversions between finch species fixed at an average rate of one every 2.26 My. Inversions were twice as likely to fix on the sex...

Data from: Inferring skeletal production from time-averaged assemblages: skeletal loss pulls the timing of production pulses towards the modern period

Adam Tomašových, Susan M. Kidwell & Rina Foygel Barber
Age-frequency distributions of dead skeletal material on the landscape or seabed—information on the time that has elapsed since the death of individuals—provide decadal- to millennial-scale perspectives both on the history of production and on the processes that lead to skeletal disintegration and burial. So far, however, models quantifying the dynamics of skeletal loss have assumed that skeletal production is constant during time-averaged accumulation. Here, to improve inferences in conservation paleobiology and historical ecology, we evaluate...

Data from: Early diversification of sperm size in the evolutionary history of the old world leaf warblers (Phylloscopidae)

K. Supriya, Melissah Rowe, Terje Laskemoen, Dhananjai Mohan, Trevor Price, Jan Lifjeld, J. T. Lifjeld & T. D. Price
Sperm morphological traits are highly variable among species and are commonly thought to evolve by post-copulatory sexual selection. However, little is known about the evolutionary dynamics of sperm morphology, and whether rates of evolutionary change are variable over time and among taxonomic groups. Here, we examine sperm morphology from 21 species of Old World leaf warblers (Phylloscopidae), a group of generally dull, sexually monochromatic birds, which are known to have high levels of extra-pair paternity....

Data from: Touch sensation by pectoral fins of the catfish Pimelodus pictus

Adam R. Hardy, Bailey M. Steinworth & Melina E. Hale
Mechanosensation is fundamental to many tetrapod limb functions yet it remains largely uninvestigated in the paired fins of fishes, the limb homologs. Here we examine whether membranous fins may function as passive structures for touch sensation in the absence of extensive fin ray movement. We investigate the pectoral fins of the pictus catfish (Pimelodus pictus), a species that lives in close association with the benthic substrate and whose fins are positioned near its ventral margin....

Data from: Cascading effects of induced terrestrial plant defenses on aquatic and terrestrial ecosystem function

Sara L. Jackrel & J. Timothy Wootton
Herbivores induce plants to undergo diverse processes that minimize costs to the plant, such as producing defences to deter herbivory or reallocating limited resources to inaccessible portions of the plant. Yet most plant tissue is consumed by decomposers, not herbivores, and these defensive processes aimed to deter herbivores may alter plant tissue even after detachment from the plant. All consumers value nutrients, but plants also require these nutrients for primary functions and defensive processes. We...

Data from: Chironomus riparius (Diptera) genome sequencing reveals the impact of minisatellite transposable elements on population divergence

Ann-Marie Oppold, Hanno Schmidt, Marcel Rose, Sören Lukas Hellman, Florian Dolze, Fabian Ripp, Bettina Weich, Urs Schmidt-Ott, Erwin Schmidt, Robert Kofler, Thomas Hankeln & Markus Pfenninger
Active transposable elements (TEs) may result in divergent genomic insertion and abundance patterns among conspecific populations. Upon secondary contact, such divergent genetic backgrounds can theoretically give rise to classical Dobzhansky-Muller incompatibilities (DMI), thus contributing to the evolution of endogenous genetic barriers and eventually cause population divergence. We investigated differential TE abundance among conspecific populations of the non-biting midge Chironomus riparius and evaluated their potential role in causing endogenous genetic incompatibilities between these populations. We focussed...

Data from: Ecological network inference from long-term presence-absence data

Elizabeth L. Sander, J. Timothy Wootton & Stefano Allesina
Ecological communities are characterized by complex networks of trophic and nontrophic interactions, which shape the dy-namics of the community. Machine learning and correlational methods are increasingly popular for inferring networks from co-occurrence and time series data, particularly in microbial systems. In this study, we test the suitability of these methods for inferring ecological interactions by constructing networks using Dynamic Bayesian Networks, Lasso regression, and Pear-son’s correlation coefficient, then comparing the model networks to empirical trophic...

Data from: Ethnically Tibetan women in Nepal with low hemoglobin concentration have better reproductive outcomes

Jang Ik Cho, Buddha Basnyat, Choongwon Jeong, Anna Di Rienzo, Geoff Childs, Sienna Craig, Jiayang Sun, Cynthia Beall & Cynthia M. Beall
Abstract Background and objectives: Tibetans have distinctively low hemoglobin concentrations at high altitudes compared with visitors and Andean highlanders. This study hypothesized that natural selection favors an unelevated hemoglobin concentration among Tibetans. It considered nonheritable sociocultural factors affecting reproductive success and tested the hypotheses that a higher percent of oxygen saturation of hemoglobin (indicating less stress) or lower hemoglobin concentration (indicating dampened response) associated with higher lifetime reproductive success. Methodology: We sampled 1006 post-reproductive ethnically...

Data from: MR1-restricted mucosal-associated invariant T (MAIT) cells respond to mycobacterial vaccination and infection in nonhuman primates

Justin M. Greene, Pradyot Dash, Sobhan Roy, Curtis McMurtrey, Walid Awad, Jason S. Reed, Katherine B. Hammond, Shaheed Abdulhaqq, Helen L. Wu, Benjamin J. Burwitz, Benjamin F. Roth, David W. Morrow, Julia C. Ford, Guangwu Xu, Joseph Y. Bae, Hugh Crank, Alfred W. Legasse, Thurston H. Dang, Hui Yee Greenaway, Monica Kurniawan, Marielle C. Gold, Melanie J. Harriff, Deborah A. Lewinsohn, Byung S. Park, Michael K. Axthelm … & Jonah B. Sacha
Studies on mucosal-associated invariant T cells (MAITs) in nonhuman primates (NHP), a physiologically relevant model of human immunity, are handicapped due to a lack of macaque MAIT-specific reagents. Here we show that while MR1 ligand-contact residues are conserved between human and multiple NHP species, three T-cell receptor contact-residue mutations in NHP MR1 diminish binding of human MR1 tetramers to macaque MAITs. Construction of naturally loaded macaque MR1 tetramers facilitated identification and characterization of macaque MR1-binding...

Data from: TP53 copy number expansion is associated with the evolution of increased body size and an enhanced DNA damage response in elephants

Michael Sulak, Lindsey Fong, Katelyn Mika, Sravanthi Chigurupati, Lisa Yon, Nigel P. Mongan, Richard D. Emes & Vincent J. Lynch
A major constraint on the evolution of large body sizes in animals is an increased risk of developing cancer. There is no correlation, however, between body size and cancer risk. This lack of correlation is often referred to as 'Peto's Paradox'. Here we show that the elephant genome encodes 20 copies of the tumor suppressor gene TP53 and that the increase in TP53 copy number occurred coincident with the evolution of large body sizes, the...

Data from: On the measurement of occupancy in ecology and paleontology

Michael Foote
Occupancy statistics in ecology and paleontology are biased upward by the fact that we generally do not have solid data on species that exist but are not found. The magnitude of this bias increases as the average occupancy probability decreases and as the number of sites sampled decreases. A maximum-likelihood method is developed to estimate the underlying distribution of occupancy probabilities of all species based only on the sample of observed species with nonzero occupancy....

Data from: Genome-wide association study of behavioral, physiological and gene expression traits in outbred CFW mice

Clarissa C. Parker, Shyam Gopalakrishnan, Peter Carbonetto, Natalia M. Gonzales, Emily Leung, Yeonhee J. Park, Emmanuel Aryee, Joe Davis, David A. Blizard, Cheryl L. Ackert-Bicknell, Arimantas Lionikas, Jonathan K. Pritchard & Abraham A. Palmer
Although mice are the most widely used mammalian model organism, genetic studies have suffered from limited mapping resolution due to extensive linkage disequilibrium (LD) that is characteristic of crosses among inbred strains. Carworth Farms White (CFW) mice are a commercially available outbred mouse population that exhibit rapid LD decay in comparison to other available mouse populations. We performed a genome-wide association study (GWAS) of behavioral, physiological and gene expression phenotypes using 1,200 male CFW mice....

Data from: Acquisition of conditioning between methamphetamine and cues in healthy humans

Joel S. Cavallo, Leah M. Mayo & Harriet De Wit
Environmental stimuli repeatedly paired with drugs of abuse can elicit conditioned responses that are thought to promote future drug seeking. We recently showed that healthy volunteers acquired conditioned responses to auditory and visual stimuli after just two pairings with methamphetamine (MA, 20 mg, oral). This study extended these findings by systematically varying the number of drug-stimuli pairings. We expected that more pairings would result in stronger conditioning. Three groups of healthy adults were randomly assigned...

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