150 Works

The Evolutionary History of Wild, Domesticated, and Feral Brassica oleracea (Brassicaceae)

Makenzie Mabry
Understanding the evolutionary history of crops, including identifying wild relatives, helps to provide insight for conservation and crop breeding efforts. Cultivated Brassica oleracea has intrigued researchers for centuries due to its wide diversity in forms, which include cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, kohlrabi, and Brussels sprouts. Yet, the evolutionary history of this species remains understudied. With such different vegetables produced from a single species, B. oleracea is a model organism for understanding the power of artificial...

Community composition influences ecosystem resistance and productivity more than species richness or intraspecific diversity

Matthew Bowker, M. Cristina Rengifo-Faiffer, Anita Antoninka, Henry Grover, Kirsten Coe, Kirsten Fisher, Brent Mishler, Mel Oliver & Lloyd Stark
Biodiversity describes the variety of life and may influence properties and processes of ecosystems, such as biomass production and resistance to disturbance. We investigated the effects of multiple facets of biodiversity – species richness and composition of the community, and intraspecific diversity in two key species – on both production and resistance of experimentally-assembled biological soil crusts (biocrusts). We found that productivity was most strongly influenced by community composition (variation in the presence and relative...

RNA-sequencing endometrium intact, vasectomized, and control heifers

Sandra Recuero, José María Sánchez, Yentel Mateo-Otero, Sandra Bagés-Arnal, Michael McDonald, Susanta K Behura, Thomas E Spencer, David A Kenny, Marc Yeste, Pat Lonergan & Beatriz Fernandez-Fuertes
An appropriate female reproductive environment is essential for pregnancy success. In several species, including mice, pigs and horses, seminal plasma (SP) components have been shown to modulate this environment, leading to increased embryo viability and implantation. Due to the characteristics of mating in the aforementioned species, SP comes into direct contact with the uterus. However, it is questionable whether any SP reaches the uterus in species that ejaculate inside the vagina, such as humans and...

Data from: Forkhead box a2 (FOXA2) impacts uterine decidualization and fetoplacental development

Pramod Dhakal, Andrew Kelleher, Susanta Behura & Thomas Spencer
Glands of the uterus are essential for the establishment of pregnancy in mice and likely humans. Forkhead box a2 (FOXA2) is a transcription factor expressed specifically in the glands of the uterus and a critical regulator of uterine gland differentiation, development and function. Mice with a conditional deletion of FOXA2 in the adult uterus, created using the lactotransferrin iCre (Ltf-iCre) model, have a morphologically normal uterus with glands, but lack a considerable number of FOXA2-dependent...

Data from: More than one way to be a giant: convergence and disparity in the hip joints of saurischian dinosaurs

Henry P. Tsai, Kevin M. Middleton, John Hutchinson & Casey M. Holliday
Saurischian dinosaurs evolved seven orders of magnitude in body mass, as well as a wide diversity of hip joint morphology and locomotor postures. The very largest saurischians possess incongruent bony hip joints, suggesting that large volumes of soft tissues mediated hip articulation. To understand the evolutionary trends and functional relationships between body size and hip anatomy of saurischians, we tested the relationships among discrete and continuous morphological characters using phylogenetically corrected regression. Giant theropods and...

Data from: Thinking outside the box: problem-solving in free-living lizards

Levi Storks & Manuel Leal
Despite evidence that organisms are more likely to exhibit their full range of cognitive abilities under conditions found in nature, studies evaluating cognition under such conditions remain rare, particularly in vertebrate species. Here we conducted an experiment to evaluate problem solving and motor-self regulation in free-living arboreal lizards, Anolis sagrei, under natural conditions. We presented lizards with a novel detour problem which challenged individuals to circumvent a transparent barrier in order to obtain a food...

Data from: Effects of climate and topography on the diversity anomaly of plants disjunctly distributed in eastern Asia and eastern North America

Xue Yin, Hong Qian, Xinghua Sui, Minhua Zhang, Lingfeng Mao, Jens-Christian Svenning, Robert E. Ricklefs & Fangliang He
Aim: Differences in physiography have been proposed to explain the diversity anomaly for vascular plants between environmentally similar regions of eastern Asia (EAS) and eastern North America (ENA). Here, we use plant species within disjunct genera to examine whether differences in topography contribute to the diversity anomaly and whether the richness–environment relationships differ between regions. Disjuncts are used to ensure that the diversity anomaly relates to post-disjunction evolution and diversification rather than regional differences in...

Changes in species composition mediate direct effects of climate change on future fire regimes of boreal forests in northeastern China

Chao Huang, Hong He, Yu Liang, Todd Hawbaker, Paul Henne, Wenru Xu, Peng Gong & Zhi Zhu
1. Direct effects of climate change (i.e., temperature rise, changes in seasonal precipitation, wind patterns, and atmospheric stability) affect fire regimes of boreal forests by altering fire behavior, fire seasons, and fuel moisture. Climate change also alters species composition and fuel characteristics, which subsequently alter fire regimes. However, indirect effects of climate change are often simplified or neglected in the direct climate-fire relationship models and dynamic global vegetation models. This may result in high uncertainties...

Complex feline disease mapping using a dense genotyping array

Jessica Hayward, Isabel Hernandez, Jeff A Brockman, Michelle E White, Lara Mouttham, Elizabeth A Wilcox, Susan Garrison, Marta G Castelhano, John P Loftus, Filipe Espinheira Gomes, Cheryl Balkman, Marjory B Brooks, Nadine Fiani, Marnin Forman, Tom Kern, Bruce Kornreich, Eric Ledbetter, Santiago Peralta, Angela M Struble, Lisa Caligiuri, Elizabeth Corey, Lin Lin, Julie Jordan, Danny Sack, Adam R Boyko … & Rory J Todhunter
The current feline genotyping array of 63k single nucleotide polymorphisms has proven its utility within breeds, and its use has led to the identification of variants associated with Mendelian traits in purebred cats. However, compared to single gene disorders, association studies of complex diseases, especially with the inclusion of random bred cats with relatively low linkage disequilibrium, require a denser genotyping array and an increased sample size to provide statistically significant associations. Here, we undertook...

Using Acquisitions as a Growth Strategy from Single Concept to Multiple Concepts: A Case Study

Francis A. Kwansa & Eliza Ching-Yick Tse
From the day a business is conceived, it is constantly faced with numerous strategic challenges that have impact on its survival, success, and/or failure. Many independent businesses fail within the first three years. For the ones that survive and prosper, they may remain as independents, private and or family businesses, while some transform into corporations and even become publicly traded entities. We use FAT Brands as a case study to examine the evolution of a...

Data from: Morphological, phylogenetic, and ecological diversity of the new model species Setaria viridis (Poaceae: Paniceae) and its close relatives

Daniel J. Layton & Elizabeth A. Kellogg
Premise of the study: Species limits of the emerging model organism Setaria viridis (tribe Paniceae, subtribe Cenchrinae) are not well defined. It is thought to be related to S. adhaerens, S. faberi, S. verticillata, and S. verticilliformis and in North America occurs with the morphologically similar S. pumila. An integrated approach was taken to evaluate its variation and relationships with the other taxa. Methods: Statistical morphology, flow cytometry, molecular phylogenetics, and growth experiments were employed...

Data from: Specialized avian Haemosporida trade reduced host breadth for increased prevalence

Matthew C. I. Medeiros, Robert E. Ricklefs & Vincenzo A. Ellis
Parasite specialization on one or a few host species leads to a reduction in the total number of available host individuals, which may decrease transmission. However, specialists are thought to be able to compensate by increased prevalence in the host population and increased success in each individual host. Here, we use variation in host breadth among a community of avian Haemosporida to investigate consequences of generalist and specialist strategies on prevalence across hosts. We show...

Data from: Quantifying direct vs. indirect effects of nectar robbers on male and female components of plant fitness

Rebecca E. Irwin, Paige Howell & Candace Galen
1. Plants interact simultaneously with both mutualists and antagonists. While webs of plant-animal interactions in natural systems can be highly complex, most interactions can be simplified into those that are either direct (mediated through pairwise interactions) or indirect (mediated through third-party species). Mechanistic studies of the direct and indirect pathways by which foliar herbivores affect plants have been well explored; however, mechanistic explorations of how floral herbivores, such as nectar robbers, affect total plant fitness...

Data from: Molecular characterization of resistance to soybean rust (Phakopsora pachyrhizi Syd. & Syd.) in soybean cultivar DT 2000 (PI 635999)

Tri Vuong, David R. Walker, Binh T. Nguyen, Tuyet T. Nguyen, Hoan X. Dinh, David L. Hyten, Perry B. Cregan, David A. Sleper, Jeong D. Lee, James G. Shannon & Tri D. Vuong
Resistance to soybean rust (SBR), caused by Phakopsora pachyrhizi Syd. & Syd., has been identified in many soybean germplasm accessions and is conferred by either dominant or recessive genes that have been mapped to six independent loci (Rpp1 –Rpp6), but No U.S. cultivars are resistant to SBR. The cultivar DT 2000 (PI 635999) has resistance to P. pachyrhizi isolates and field populations from the United States as well as Vietnam. A F6:7 recombinant inbred line...

Data from: A multilocus phylogenetic analysis of Escallonia (Escalloniaceae): diversification in montane South America

Felipe Zapata
The mountains of South America are hotspots of plant diversity. How this diversity originated and evolved, and what roles geographic and environmental factors may have played in the diversification of lineages occurring in these regions is not well understood. Escallonia, a morphologically and ecologically diverse group of shrubs and trees widely distributed in these mountains, provides an ideal opportunity for studying the historical underpinnings that have shaped the extraordinarily distinctive, diverse, and endangered flora of...

Data from: Flight of the bumble bee: buzzes predict pollination services

Nicole E. Miller-Struttmann, David Heise, Johannes Schul, Jennifer C. Geib & Candace Galen
Multiple interacting factors drive recent declines in wild and managed bees, threatening their pollination services. Widespread and intensive monitoring could lead to more effective management of wild and managed bees. However, tracking their dynamic populations is costly. We tested the effectiveness of an inexpensive, noninvasive and passive acoustic survey technique for monitoring bumble bee behavior and pollination services. First, we assessed the relationship between the first harmonic of the flight buzz (characteristic frequency) and pollinator...

Data from: Postglacial expansion pathways of red mangrove, Rhizophora mangle, in the Caribbean Basin and Florida

John Paul Kennedy, Maria W. Pil, C. Edward Proffitt, Walter A. Boeger, Alice M. Stanford & Donna J. Devlin
PREMISE OF THE STUDY: The Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) was a period of massive range contraction. Post-LGM, water-dispersed coastal species, including the red mangrove (Rhizophora mangle), expanded poleward as propagules were transported by ocean currents. We assessed postglacial marine expansion pathways for R. mangle within the Caribbean Basin and Florida. METHODS: Six microsatellite loci were used to genotype 237 individuals from nine R. mangle populations in the Caribbean, Florida, and Northwest Africa. We evaluated genetic...

Data from: Habitat traits and species interactions differentially affect abundance and body size in pond-breeding amphibians

Brittany H. Ousterhout, Thomas L. Anderson, Dana L. Drake, William E. Peterman & Raymond D. Semlitsch
1. In recent studies, habitat traits have emerged as stronger predictors of species occupancy, abundance, richness and diversity than competition. However, in many cases, it remains unclear whether habitat also mediates processes more subtle than competitive exclusion, such as growth, or whether intra- and interspecific interactions among individuals of different species may be better predictors of size. 2. To test whether habitat traits are a stronger predictor of abundance and body size than intra- and...

Data from: Choice in a floral marketplace: the role of complexity in bumble bee decision-making

Matthew W. Austin, Patricia Horack & Aimee S. Dunlap
Animals have evolved in complex, heterogeneous environments. Thus, decision-making behavior is likely affected by a diversity of co-occurring community-level traits. Here, we investigate how three co-occurring traits of floral communities - the number of flower types, reliability that flowers are associated with a reward, and signal complexity of flowers - affect bumble bee (Bombus impatiens) decision-making. We used arrays of artificial flowers in a full factorial experimental design to assess floral selectivity (preference and constancy),...

Data from: Mollusks from the upper Shackleton Limestone (Cambrian Series 2), Central Transantarctic Mountains, East Antarctica

Thomas M. Claybourn, Sarah M. Jacquet, Christian B. Skovsted, Timothy P. Topper, Lars E. Holmer & Glenn A. Brock
An assemblage of Cambrian Series 2, Stages 3–4 conchiferan mollusks from the Shackleton Limestone, Transantarctic Mountains, East Antarctica is formally described and illustrated. The fauna includes one bivalve, one macromollusk and ten micromollusks, including the first description of the species Xinjispira simplex outside North China. The new fauna shows some similarity to previously described micromollusks from lower Cambrian glacial erratics from the Antarctic Peninsula. The fauna, mainly composed of steinkerns, is relatively low diversity, but...

Data from: Taxa, petitioning agency, and lawsuits affect time spent awaiting listing under the US Endangered Species Act

Emily E. Puckett, Dylan C. Kesler & D. Noah Greenwald
The United States' Endangered Species Act (ESA) is the world's foremost law for protecting species at risk of extinction; however, species must first be listed as threatened or endangered before receiving protection under the Act. We used an information theoretic approach to assess whether listing budget, policy phase (which was correlated with presidential administration), or both factors were associated with the number of species listed annually between 1983 and 2014. Annual listing rates were positively...

Data from: Sexual selection on male vocal fundamental frequency in humans and other anthropoids

David A. Puts, Alexander K. Hill, Drew H. Bailey, Robert S. Walker, Drew Rendall, John R. Wheatley, Lisa L. M. Welling, Khytam Dawood, Rodrigo A. Cárdenas, Robert P. Burriss, Nina G. Jablonski, Mark D. Shriver, Daniel J. Weiss, Adriano R. Lameira, Coren L. Apicella, Michael J. Owren, Claudia Barelli, Mary E. Glenn & Gabriel Ramos-Fernandez
In many primates, including humans, the vocalizations of males and females differ dramatically, with male vocalizations and vocal anatomy often seeming to exaggerate apparent body size. These traits may be favoured by sexual selection because low-frequency male vocalizations intimidate rivals and/or attract females, but this hypothesis has not been systematically tested across primates, nor is it clear why competitors and potential mates should attend to vocalization frequencies. Here we show across anthropoids that sexual dimorphism...

Data from: Elucidating steroid alkaloid biosynthesis in Veratrum californicum: production of verazine in Sf9 cells

Megan M. Augustin, Dan R. Ruzicka, Ashutosh K. Shukla, Courtney M. Starks, Mark O'Neil-Johnson, Michael R. McKain, Bradley S. Evans, Matthew D. Barrett, Ann Smithson, Gane Ka-Shu Wong, Michael K. Deyholos, Patrick P. Edger, J. Chris Pires, James H. Leebens-Mack, Dave A. Mann, Toni M. Kutchan & Matt D. Barrett
Steroid alkaloids have been shown to elicit a wide range of pharmacological effects that include anticancer and antifungal activities. Understanding the biosynthesis of these molecules is essential to bioengineering for sustainable production. Herein, we investigate the biosynthetic pathway to cyclopamine, a steroid alkaloid that shows promising antineoplastic activities. Supply of cyclopamine is limited, as the current source is solely derived from wild collection of the plant Veratrum californicum. To elucidate the early stages of the...

Data from: Clonal evolution and genome stability in a 2,500-year-old fungal individual

James B. Anderson, Johann N. Bruhn, Dahlia Kasimer, Hao Wang, Nicolas Rodrigue & Myron L. Smith
Individuals of the basidiomycete fungus Armillaria are well-known for their ability to spread from woody substrate to substrate on the forest floor through the growth of rhizomoprhs. Here we made 248 collections of A. gallica in one locality in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. To identify individuals, we genotyped collections with molecular markers and somatic compatibility testing. We found several different individuals in proximity to one another, but one genetic individual stood out as exceptionally large, covering...

Data from: Assessing the joint behavior of species traits as filtered by environment

Erin M. Schliep, Alan E. Gelfand, Rachel M. Mitchell, Matthew E. Aiello-Lammens, & John A. Silander
Understanding and predicting how species traits are shaped by prevailing environmental conditions is an important yet challenging task in ecology. Functional trait based approaches can replace potentially idiosyncratic species-specific response models in learning about community behavior across environmental gradients. Customarily, models for traits given environment consider only trait means to predict species and functional diversity, as intra-taxon variability in traits is often thought to be negligible. A growing body of literature indicates that intra-taxon trait...

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