Concern for megafauna is increasing among scientists and non-scientists. Many studies have emphasized that megafauna play prominent ecological roles and provide important ecosystem services to humanity. But, what precisely are “megafauna”? Here we critically assess the concept of megafauna and propose a goal-oriented framework for megafaunal research. First, we review definitions of megafauna and analyze associated terminology in the scientific literature. Second, we conduct a survey among ecologists and paleontologists to assess the species traits...
Contemporary phenotypic trends associated with global change are widely documented, but whether such trends always denote trait optimization under changed conditions remains obscure. Natural selection has shaped the wings of long-distance migratory birds to minimize the costs of transport, and new optimal wing shapes could be promoted by migration patterns altered due to global change. Alternatively, wing shape could vary as a correlated response to selection on other traits favoured in a changing environment, eventually...
Human cooperation is likely supported by our tendency to punish selfishness in others. Social norms play an important role in motivating third-party punishment, and also in explaining societal differences in prosocial behavior. However, there has been little work directly linking social norms to the development of third-party punishment across societies. In this study, we explored the impact of normative information on the development of third-party punishment in 603 children aged 4-14 years, across six diverse...
Data from: Mechanical and structural adaptations to migration in the flight feathers of a Palaearctic passerineIván De La Hera, Irene Hernández-Téllez, José Pérez-Rigueiro, Javier Pérez-Tris, Francisco Rojo & José Luis Tellería
Current avian migration patterns in temperate regions have been developed during the glacial retreat and subsequent colonization of the ice-free areas during the Holocene. This process resulted in a geographic gradient of greater seasonality as latitude increased that favoured migration-related morphological and physiological (co)adaptations. Most evidence of avian morphological adaptations to migration comes from the analysis of variation in the length and shape of the wings, but the existence of intra-feather structural adjustments has been...
The genetic ancestry of American Creole cattle inferred from uniparental and autosomal genetic markersOscar Cortes Gardyn, Catarina Ginja, Luis Telo De Gama, Amparo Martínez, Inmaculada Martín Burriel & Juan Vicente Delgado
Cattle imported from the Iberian Peninsula spread throughout America in the early years of discovery and colonization to originate Creole breeds, which adapted to a wide diversity of environments and later received infuences from other origins, including zebu cattle in more recent years. We analyzed uniparental genetic markers and autosomal microsatellites in DNA samples from 114 cattle breeds distributed worldwide, including 40 Creole breeds representing the whole American continent, and samples from the Iberian Peninsula,...
Endocannabinoid signalling in stem cells and cerebral organoids drives differentiation to deep layer projection neurons via CB1 receptorsJuan Paraiso-Luna, Jose Aguareles, Ricardo Martin, Ane C. Ayo-Martin, Daniel Garcia-Rincon, Samuel Simon-Sanchez, Adan De Salas-Quiroga, Javier Diaz-Alonso, Elena Garcia-Taboada, Isabel Liste, Jose Sanchez-Prieto, Silvia Cappello, Manuel Guzman, Ismael Galve-Roperh & Carlos Costas-Insua
The endocannabinoid (eCB) system, via cannabinoid CB1 receptor, regulates neurodevelopment by controlling neural progenitor proliferation and neurogenesis. CB1 receptor signalling in vivo drives corticofugal deep layer projection neuron development through the regulation of BCL11B and Satb2 transcription factors. Here, we investigated the role of eCB signalling in mouse pluripotent embryonic stem cell-derived neuronal differentiation. Characterization of the eCB system revealed increased expression of eCB-metabolizing enzymes, eCB ligands and CB1 receptors along neuronal differentiation. CB1 receptor...
Mobile integrons are widespread genetic platforms that allow bacteria to modulate the expression of antibiotic resistance cassettes by shuffling their position from a common promoter. Antibiotic stress induces the expression of an integrase that excises and integrates cassettes, and this unique recombination and expression system is thought to allow bacteria to ‘evolve on demand’ in response to antibiotic pressure. To test this hypothesis, we inserted a custom three cassette integron into P. aeruginosa, and used...
Prioritizing road-kill mitigation areas: a spatially explicit national-scale model for an elusive carnivoreLuca Francesco Russo, Rafael Barrientos, Mauro Fabrizio, Mirko Di Febbraro & Anna Loy
Aim: Roads impact wildlife in different ways, among which road mortality has been the most studied. Budgets in conservation biology are usually small, and macroecological approaches have been employed in recent years as the first steps towards guiding management. Carnivores are particularly vulnerable to mortality on roads due to their elevated ecological needs (low population density, often low fecundity, and relatively large home ranges). Our aim was to develop a ranking methodology to prioritize specific...
1. Quantitative PCR (qPCR) has been commonly used to measure gene expression in a number of research contexts, but the measured RNA concentrations do not always represent the concentrations of active proteins which they encode. This can be due to transcriptional regulation or post-translational modifications, or localisation of immune environments, as can occur during infection. However, in studies using free-living non-model species, such as in ecoimmunological research, qPCR may be the only available option to...
Data from: Feeding specialisation and longer generation time are associated with relatively larger brains in beesFerran Sayol, Miguel Á. Collado, Joan Garcia-Porta, Marc A. Seid, Jason Gibbs, Ainhoa Agorreta, Diego San Mauro, Ivo Raemakers, Daniel Sol & Ignasi Bartomeus
Despite their miniature brains, insects exhibit substantial variation in brain size. Although the functional significance of this variation is increasingly recognized, research on whether differences in insect brain sizes are mainly the result of constraints or selective pressures has hardly been performed. Here, we address this gap by combining prospective and retrospective phylogenetic-based analyses of brain size for a major insect group, bees (superfamily Apoidea). Using a brain dataset of 93 species from North America...
Complutense University of Madrid10
Estación Biológica de Doñana2
University of Nottingham2
Sao Paulo State University1
Instituto de Salud Carlos III1
Centro de Investigación Biomédica en Red sobre Enfermedades Neurodegenerativas1
University of Zaragoza1