WorldWideScience

Sample records for black widow spider

  1. Black widow spider envenomation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, Michael E

    2006-11-01

    Black widow spiders are found throughout the continental United States and north into the southern Canadian provinces. Male black widow spiders are of little medical importance. Female black widow spiders can be 20 times larger than males. The female can be identified by the hourglass pattern, red or orange in color, on the ventral aspect of her shiny, globose black abdomen. Black widow spiders control the amount of venom they inject; an estimated 15% of bites to humans are non-envenomating. Cats are very sensitive to the venom and deaths are common. Dogs have severe clinical signs but are considered more resistant than cats. A single bite is capable of delivering a lethal dose of venom to companion animals. There are several toxic components consisting of five or six biologically active proteins. These include a potent mammalian neurotoxin called alpha-latrotoxin, which induces neurotransmitter release from nerve terminals. Acetylcholine, noradrenalin, dopamine, glutamate, and enkephalin systems are all susceptible to the toxin. Onset of clinical signs usually occurs during the first 8 hours post envenomation. The condition is extremely painful in moderate to severe envenomations. Abdominal rigidity without tenderness is a hallmark sign of Latrodectus envenomation. In cats, paralytic signs may occur early and are particularly marked. Hypertension is a significant threat. First aid is of no value in the treatment. The primary treatment for black widow spider envenomation is the administration of specific antivenin, which provides the most permanent and quickest relief of the envenomation syndrome, usually within 30 minutes of infusion. The prognosis of Latrodectus envenomation is uncertain of several days, and complete recovery may take weeks.

  2. Black widow spider

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... spider belongs, contains the largest number of venomous species known. This article is for information only. DO ... Clean the area with soap and water. Wrap ice in a clean cloth and place it on ...

  3. Black widow spider bite.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kobernick, M

    1984-05-01

    Latrodectus mactans has now invaded towns and cities. The spider's venom is a neurotoxin that causes little local reaction but produces pain and spasm in large skeletal muscle groups within 30 minutes to three hours after the bite. Severe envenomation may result in respiratory failure and coma. First aid is of no value. Muscle relaxants are useful in treatment, as is calcium gluconate. Antivenin is indicated for high-risk victims, such as those with hypertension and persons younger than 16 or older than 60 years of age.

  4. Anaphylaxis to black widow spider antivenom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoyte, Christopher O; Cushing, Tracy A; Heard, Kennon J

    2012-06-01

    Black widow spider envenomation is commonly reported to poison centers. Black widow spider envenomation produces a clinical syndrome, known as latrodectism, characterized by headache, nausea, vomiting, several muscle cramping and pain, joint stiffness, hypertension, and regional diaphoresis. Black widow spider antivenom (Merck & Co, Inc, West Point, PA USA) is an effective and relatively safe treatment option. There is 1 clear case of anaphylaxis secondary to black widow spider antivenom reported in the medical literature. Here, we report a case of anaphylaxis to antivenom. A 12-year-old boy presented to the emergency department (ED) with diffuse, severe pain 2 1/2 hours after being bitten by a black widow spider on the right lower extremity. In the ED, the patient failed analgesic therapy with fentanyl and was given black widow spider antivenom. Within 45 minutes, he exhibited signs and symptoms consistent with anaphylaxis, including wheezing, chest tightness, pruritus, and urticarial rash. The patient was given standard therapy for anaphylaxis, and all of his signs and symptoms (including the pain secondary to the black widow envenomation) resolved over 6 hours of observation. Leading experts agree that the use of antivenom is indicated in cases of severe envenomation not responsive to standard therapy. Despite concern that the antivenom is an equine-derived whole IgG and can precipitate early hypersensitivity reactions, there is only 1 other reported case of anaphylaxis to the antivenom in the medical literature.

  5. Reversible Myocarditis after Black Widow Spider Envenomation

    OpenAIRE

    Tarek Dendane; Khalid Abidi; Naoufel Madani; Asmae Benthami; Fatima-Zohra Gueddari; Redoune Abouqal; Amine-Ali Zeggwagh

    2012-01-01

    Black widow spiders can cause variable clinical scenarios from local damage to very serious conditions including death. Acute myocardial damage is rarely observed and its prognostic significance is not known. We report a rare case of a 35-year-old man who developed an acute myocarditis with cardiogenic pulmonary edema requiring mechanical ventilation caused by black widow spider's envenomation. The patient was previously healthy. The clinical course was associated with systemic and cardiovasc...

  6. Hey! A Black Widow Spider Bit Me!

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... as soon as you can because they can make you very sick. With an adult's help, wash the bite well with soap and water. Then apply an ice pack to the bite, and try to elevate the area and keep it still to help prevent the ... black widows, you'll want to make sure that's the kind of spider that bit ...

  7. Troponin elevation after black widow spider envenomation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bush, Sean P; Davy, J Veeran

    2015-09-01

    Black widow spider envenomation generally results in self-limiting pain that can be treated in the emergency department (ED) with analgesics and benzodiazepines, usually with no further intervention. Occasionally, a patient has to be admitted or treated with antivenom for refractory pain or a venom-induced complication. We present the case of an 84-year-old man who presented to our ED with chest pain and dyspnea after being bitten on the foot by a western black widow spider (Lactrodectus hesperus). His initial cardiac troponin I (cTnI) was elevated at 0.07 ng/ml and continued to rise to a peak of 0.17 ng/ml. He also had rhabdomyolysis, another uncommon complication of black widow envenomation. An elevated cTnI generally signifies myocardial injury and is rarely seen after black widow envenomation. We discuss the possible etiologies for an elevated cardiac biomarker, in this context, and review potentially serious complications of widow spider envenomation presenting with chest symptoms and an elevated cardiac biomarker.

  8. The toxicology of Latrodectus tredecimguttatus: the Mediterranean Black Widow spider.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonnet, M S

    2004-01-01

    The symptomatology of envenomation by the Mediterranean Black Widow Spider, Latrodectus tredecimguttatus, is reviewed. The results confirm the hypothesis that the homeopathic remedy, Tarentula hispanica, is derived from this spider, not from the Wolf spider, Lycosa tarentula.

  9. Reversible Myocarditis after Black Widow Spider Envenomation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tarek Dendane

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Black widow spiders can cause variable clinical scenarios from local damage to very serious conditions including death. Acute myocardial damage is rarely observed and its prognostic significance is not known. We report a rare case of a 35-year-old man who developed an acute myocarditis with cardiogenic pulmonary edema requiring mechanical ventilation caused by black widow spider's envenomation. The patient was previously healthy. The clinical course was associated with systemic and cardiovascular complaints. His electrocardiogram revealed ST-segment elevation with T-wave amplitude. The plasma concentrations of cardiac enzymes were elevated. His first echocardiography showed hypokinesis of the left ventricle (left ventricle ejection fraction 48%. Magnetic resonance imaging showed also focal myocardial injury of the LV. There was progressive improvement in cardiac traces, biochemical and echocardiographical values (second left ventricle ejection fraction increased to 50%. Myocardial involvement after a spider bite is rare and can cause death. The exact mechanism of this myocarditis is unknown. We report a rare case of acute myocarditis with cardiogenic pulmonary edema requiring mechanical ventilation caused by black widow spider's envenomation. We objectively documented progressive clinical and electrical improvement.

  10. Reversible myocarditis after black widow spider envenomation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dendane, Tarek; Abidi, Khalid; Madani, Naoufel; Benthami, Asmae; Gueddari, Fatima-Zohra; Abouqal, Redoune; Zeggwagh, Amine-Ali

    2012-01-01

    Black widow spiders can cause variable clinical scenarios from local damage to very serious conditions including death. Acute myocardial damage is rarely observed and its prognostic significance is not known. We report a rare case of a 35-year-old man who developed an acute myocarditis with cardiogenic pulmonary edema requiring mechanical ventilation caused by black widow spider's envenomation. The patient was previously healthy. The clinical course was associated with systemic and cardiovascular complaints. His electrocardiogram revealed ST-segment elevation with T-wave amplitude. The plasma concentrations of cardiac enzymes were elevated. His first echocardiography showed hypokinesis of the left ventricle (left ventricle ejection fraction 48%). Magnetic resonance imaging showed also focal myocardial injury of the LV. There was progressive improvement in cardiac traces, biochemical and echocardiographical values (second left ventricle ejection fraction increased to 50%). Myocardial involvement after a spider bite is rare and can cause death. The exact mechanism of this myocarditis is unknown. We report a rare case of acute myocarditis with cardiogenic pulmonary edema requiring mechanical ventilation caused by black widow spider's envenomation. We objectively documented progressive clinical and electrical improvement.

  11. Black widow spider bite: a case study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaisford, Kristine; Kautz, Donald D

    2011-01-01

    This article is a case study of a patient cared for in the hours before her death. After the patient's death, we learned the patient died of a black widow spider bite. This article sheds light on the potential seriousness of this venom and allows for more rapid detection and treatment of those who are unfortunate enough to be bitten. The authors have documented the sequence of events for the patient, outlined the care the patient received, examined the pathophysiology of the body to a spider bite, and then made a passionate appeal for other nurses who work in critical care to do the same with patients in similar situations.

  12. Black widow spider envenomation in pregnancy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolfe, Michael D; Myers, Orrin; Caravati, E Martin; Rayburn, William F; Seifert, Steven A

    2011-01-01

    Little data exist regarding the optimal treatment and outcomes of pregnancies complicated by black widow spider envenomation. Our objective is to evaluate the clinical effects, medical outcomes, and treatment differences between pregnant and nonpregnant women. This observational study is based on a review of the database maintained by the American Association of Poison Control Centers from 2003 to 2007. Of the 12,640 human black widow spider envenomations reported at 61 poison centers in the United States, 3194 (25.3%) involved women of reproductive age, defined as age 15-45 years of age, with 97 (3.0% of reproductive-age women) being pregnant. Comparing pregnant and nonpregnant women, there were no significant differences in recommended or administered treatments. Pregnant women were more likely than nonpregnant women (OR: 1.84, 95% CI: 1.20-2.83) to have outcomes coded as minor, moderate, or major rather than no effect. Significantly higher percentages of pregnant patients were treated at a healthcare facility where they were either released (36.1% vs. 19.9%, p  Black widow spider envenomation is a rare occurrence in pregnant women and the short-term outcomes appear to be favorable.

  13. Myocarditis after black widow spider envenomation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sari, Ibrahim; Zengin, Suat; Davutoglu, Vedat; Yildirim, Cuma; Gunay, Nurullah

    2008-06-01

    The black widow spider (BWS), which is a member of the arthropod family, is widely distributed on earth. Black widow spider bites can cause a wide variety of signs or symptoms in humans, but the cardiovascular manifestations are relatively rare except hypertension/hypotension and bradycardia/tachycardia. We report on a 65-year-old man who experienced myocarditis after BWS envenomation, which is extremely rare. He complained of chest pain after the BWS bite, and electrocardiography (ECG) was consistent with a 0.5-mm ST-segment elevation in leads II, aVF, and V3 through V6 and accompanying augmentation in T-wave amplitude in leads V3 through V6 without reciprocal changes. Creatine kinase-MB, troponin-I, and aspartate aminotransferase levels peaked at 98 IU/L, 6.1 ng/mL, and 62 U/L, respectively. His ECG readings and cardiac enzymes returned to normal with supportive treatment, and he was discharged with complete recovery. To the best of our knowledge, the present case is the third in the literature reporting myocarditis and the first reporting ST-segment elevation and accompanying augmentation in T-wave amplitude after BWS envenomation. In addition to usual measures, we recommend ECG and cardiac-specific enzyme followup for every patient envenomated by BWS for potentially fatal cardiac involvement.

  14. Black widow spider and brown recluse spider bites in Texas from 1998 through 2002.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forrester, Mathias B; Stanley, Sharilyn K

    2003-10-01

    Black widow spiders and brown recluse spiders are of medical importance to humans in the US. However, these spiders differ in their habits, habitat, and the clinical effects and treatment of their bite. This study used data from human exposure calls to poison centers in Texas to compare the epidemioloy of bites from these 2 spiders. During 1998-2002, 760 black widow spider bites and 1,369 brown recluse spider bites were reported. Black widow spider bite penetrance demonstrated no secular trend during this time period while the penetrance of brown recluse spider bites increased. A higher percentage of black widow spider bites occurred among males, while a higher proportion of brown recluse spider bites were reported for females. Black widow spider bites most frequently had mild outcomes while brown recluse spider bites most often had moderate outcomes. The majority of reported bites for both types of spider occurred at the patient's own residence, although the percentage was lower for black widow spiders. Seasonal trends were noted for both black widow and brown recluse spiders. The highest penetrance of black widow spider bites was observed in western Texas while the highest penetrance of brown recluse spider bites was observed in central Texas. This information is useful for identifying those populations at greatest risk for the respective spider bites.

  15. The prevalence of brown widow and black widow spiders (Araneae: Theridiidae) in urban southern California.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vetter, Richard S; Vincent, Leonard S; Danielsen, Douglas W R; Reinker, Kathryn I; Clarke, Daniel E; Itnyre, Amelia A; Kabashima, John N; Rust, Michael K

    2012-07-01

    The brown widow spider, Latrodectus geometricus C. L. Koch, has become newly established in southern California during the first decade of the 21st century. Brown widows and egg sacs were collected within the urban Los Angeles Basin using timed searches. We also collected and compared the abundance and distribution of the native western black widow spider, Latrodectus hesperus Chamberlin & Ivie, to brown widows. Brown widows were very common around urban structures especially outside homes, in parks, under playground equipment, in plant nurseries and landscaping areas, greatly outnumbering native western black widows, and were very rare or nonexistent in garages, agricultural crops, and natural areas. Western black widows predominated in xeric habitats and were less prevalent around homes. Neither species was found in the living space of homes. In southern California, envenomation risk exists because brown widows are now common in urban areas and the spiders hide where people place their fingers and exert pressure to move objects (e.g., under the curled lip of potted plants, in the recessed handle of plastic trash bins). Nonetheless, brown widow spider bites are less toxic than those of native western black widow spiders and, hence, if they are displacing black widows, overall widow envenomation risk may actually be lower than before brown widow establishment.

  16. [The black widow spider--its appearance and control].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landeka, Nediljko; Plenković, Jasminka

    2003-03-01

    Between 1995 and 2002, a massive appearance of black widow (Latrodectus mactans tredecimguttatus, Rossi 1790) was recorded along the Croatia coast. This paper gives a historical review of latrodectism and observations from Istria and Dalmatia, paying particular attention to the spider's habitat. There are several reasons for the black widow to appear in a new habitat such as the introduction of leguminous plants, watermelons and melons where crops were grown earlier. Black widow can also be found near buildings and gardens. Human contacts with the spider are usually without consequences for humans, thanks to education and a relatively good visibility of the spider. The authors describe their experience in fighting black widow and emphasise the importance of education in preventing lactrodectism.

  17. Latrodectism—Effects of the Black Widow Spider Bite

    OpenAIRE

    Timms, Patrick K.; Gibbons, Robert B.

    1986-01-01

    Latrodectism—envenomation by the black widow spider, Latrodectus mactans—has been reported in virtually every state. The spider is particularly prevalent in the Southwest, Southeast and California, and symptoms from its bite are painful and may be confusing to clinicians. Prompt improvement can be expected in most cases with administration of calcium and muscle relaxant, but some patients may require treatment with antivenin. No deaths occurred in our series of 11 patients, although one case ...

  18. Black widow spider (Latrodectus mactans) envenomation in a term pregnancy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sherman; Groll; Gonzalez; Aerts

    2000-07-01

    Description of a black widow spider (Latrodectus mactans) envenomation in a term pregnancy.Case report conducted at an Air Force tertiary care hospital of a 27-year-old primigravida at 38 1/7 weeks pregnancy.Latrodectus mactans antivenin can be given to treat symptoms of black widow envenomation.Black widow envenomations can cause symptoms associated with acute intra-abdominal processes. In pregnancy, envenomations can result in symptoms and signs similar to those seen in preeclampsia (abdominal pain, headache, hypertension, and proteinuria). Latrodectism should be considered in patients complaining of these symptoms in association with a spider bite. If latrodectism is considered to be the underlying origin for these symptoms, appropriate treatment should be administered. In cases of pregnancy, treatment should include L. mactans antivenin if believed to be clinically indicated. There is no current evidence that this antivenin is contraindicated in pregnancy. (Curr Surg 57:346-348)

  19. Priapism after western black widow spider (Latrodectus hesperus) envenomation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bush, Sean; McCune, Rohn; Phan, Tammy

    2014-03-01

    Priapism in children after a black widow spider bite is a rare phenomenon with only a few case reports noted in the literature. Black widow bites are commonly associated with pain, muscle cramping, hypertension, and tachycardia. Initial treatment includes pain control with opiate or opioid medications and benzodiazepines, with antivenom reserved for severe cases of envenomation manifested by uncontrolled pain or hypertension. Treatment with antivenom for priapism is not well described; however, it has been noted to resolve priapism in the few cases that have been reported. We present a case of a 3-year-old boy who was bitten by a black widow and presented with abdominal cramping and priapism. © 2014 Wilderness Medical Society Published by Wilderness Medical Society All rights reserved.

  20. Black widow spider envenomation, a rare cause of Horner's syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strowd, Roy E; Scott, Blake; Walker, Francis O

    2012-06-01

    Horner's syndrome involves a triad of eyelid ptosis, miosis, and facial anhidrosis that results from disruption of the oculosympathetic pathway. Acquired Horner's syndrome is associated with a variety of medical conditions including Pancoast tumor and carotid dissection. We report the unique case of a 47-year-old man presenting with Horner's syndrome 4 weeks after black widow spider envenomation. Workup did not reveal any alternative explanatory etiology. We hypothesize that late sequelae of black widow spider envenomation secondary to autonomic nerve injury or retrograde axonal transport after mechanical inoculation may have led to an acquired defect in the oculosympathetic pathway resulting in a Horner's syndrome. This case introduces a rare cause of Horner's syndrome and highlights the importance of environmental exposures in the evaluation of these patients. Copyright © 2012 Wilderness Medical Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Latrodectism—Effects of the Black Widow Spider Bite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Timms, Patrick K.; Gibbons, Robert B.

    1986-01-01

    Latrodectism—envenomation by the black widow spider, Latrodectus mactans—has been reported in virtually every state. The spider is particularly prevalent in the Southwest, Southeast and California, and symptoms from its bite are painful and may be confusing to clinicians. Prompt improvement can be expected in most cases with administration of calcium and muscle relaxant, but some patients may require treatment with antivenin. No deaths occurred in our series of 11 patients, although one case was complicated by serum sickness. PMID:3962294

  2. [Neurotoxic manifestations of black widow spider envenomation in paediatric patients].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sotelo-Cruz, N; Gómez-Rivera, N

    2016-05-01

    Envenomation by black widow spiders manifests clinically with signs of neurotoxicity in paediatric patients. Identify typical neurological signs and symptoms in paediatric patients of different ages, and describe treatment and outcomes in a paediatric hospital in northwest Mexico. We reviewed 70 clinical records of patients hospitalised due to black widow spider bite between 1978 and 2014. We divided the total into 2 groups: Group 1, infants and preschool children; and Group 2, school-age children and adolescents. The demographic variables were age, sex, birthplace, place where envenomation occurred, body part(s) affected, degree of envenomation according to signs and symptoms, treatment, clinical outcome, and statistical differences. Boys accounted for 61.4% of all cases, and infants younger than one year old made up 14.2%. Most patients (70%) were bitten by the spider at home; the anatomical areas most frequently affected were the legs, neck, thorax, and abdomen. The neurological signs and symptoms displayed by Group 1 were irritability, constant crying, sialorrhoea, nausea, tachycardia, arrhythmias, fatigue when walking, agitation, muscle spasms paraesthesia, tetany, seizures, and nystagmus. Signs in Group 2 included localized pain, headache, sialorrhoea, paraesthesia, profuse sweating, anxiety, muscle weakness, muscle spasms, and fine tremor. The predominant autonomic sign in Group 1 was sialorrhoea (P<.0001) and in Group 2, paraesthesia (P<.0001). Patients who received Fab antivenom treatment displayed better outcomes and shorter hospital stays than those who did not. No deaths were reported. The neurological signs and symptoms caused by black widow spider bite are predominantly autonomic, and identifying them permits early diagnosis and more effective treatment. Copyright © 2015 Sociedad Española de Neurología. Published by Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

  3. Case report: compartment syndrome after a suspected black widow spider bite.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, Jennifer; Bush, Sean

    2005-04-01

    Widow spider envenomations generally produce systemic neurologic syndromes without significant local injury. We report a patient who sustained a black widow spider bite to the left forearm and presented to the emergency department with rhabdomyolysis and compartment syndrome. We documented a decrease in symptoms and compartment pressure after administration of antivenom. No surgical intervention was performed. We believe this report to be the first documenting compartment syndrome associated with black widow spider bite.

  4. Insecticidal toxins from black widow spider venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rohou, A; Nield, J; Ushkaryov, Y A

    2007-03-15

    The biological effects of Latrodectus spider venom are similar in animals from different phyla, but these symptoms are caused by distinct phylum-specific neurotoxins (collectively called latrotoxins) with molecular masses ranging from 110 to 140 kDa. To date, the venom has been found to contain five insecticidal toxins, termed alpha, beta, gamma, delta and epsilon-latroinsectotoxins (LITs). There is also a vertebrate-specific neurotoxin, alpha-latrotoxin (alpha-LTX), and one toxin affecting crustaceans, alpha-latrocrustatoxin (alpha-LCT). These toxins stimulate massive release of neurotransmitters from nerve terminals and act (1) by binding to specific receptors, some of which mediate an exocytotic signal, and (2) by inserting themselves into the membrane and forming ion-permeable pores. Specific receptors for LITs have yet to be identified, but all three classes of vertebrate receptors known to bind alpha-LTX are also present in insects. All LTXs whose structures have been elucidated (alpha-LIT, delta-LIT, alpha-LTX and alpha-LCT) are highly homologous and have a similar domain architecture, which consists of a unique N-terminal sequence and a large domain composed of 13-22 ankyrin repeats. Three-dimensional (3D) structure analysis, so far done for alpha-LTX only, has revealed its dimeric nature and an ability to form symmetrical tetramers, a feature probably common to all LTXs. Only tetramers have been observed to insert into membranes and form pores. A preliminary 3D reconstruction of a delta-LIT monomer demonstrates the spatial similarity of this toxin to the monomer of alpha-LTX.

  5. Postharvest fumigation of California table grapes with ozone to control Western black widow spider (Araneae: Theridiidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ozone fumigations were evaluated for postharvest control of Western black widow spider (BWS), Latrodectus hesperus (Chamberlin and Ivie), in fresh table grapes destined for export from California USA. Mature adult female black widow spiders were contained in separate gas-permeable cages within a flo...

  6. Microdissection of black widow spider silk-producing glands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeffery, Felicia; La Mattina, Coby; Tuton-Blasingame, Tiffany; Hsia, Yang; Gnesa, Eric; Zhao, Liang; Franz, Andreas; Vierra, Craig

    2011-01-11

    Modern spiders spin high-performance silk fibers with a broad range of biological functions, including locomotion, prey capture and protection of developing offspring. Spiders accomplish these tasks by spinning several distinct fiber types that have diverse mechanical properties. Such specialization of fiber types has occurred through the evolution of different silk-producing glands, which function as small biofactories. These biofactories manufacture and store large quantities of silk proteins for fiber production. Through a complex series of biochemical events, these silk proteins are converted from a liquid into a solid material upon extrusion. Mechanical studies have demonstrated that spider silks are stronger than high-tensile steel. Analyses to understand the relationship between the structure and function of spider silk threads have revealed that spider silk consists largely of proteins, or fibroins, that have block repeats within their protein sequences. Common molecular signatures that contribute to the incredible tensile strength and extensibility of spider silks are being unraveled through the analyses of translated silk cDNAs. Given the extraordinary material properties of spider silks, research labs across the globe are racing to understand and mimic the spinning process to produce synthetic silk fibers for commercial, military and industrial applications. One of the main challenges to spinning artificial spider silk in the research lab involves a complete understanding of the biochemical processes that occur during extrusion of the fibers from the silk-producing glands. Here we present a method for the isolation of the seven different silk-producing glands from the cobweaving black widow spider, which includes the major and minor ampullate glands [manufactures dragline and scaffolding silk], tubuliform [synthesizes egg case silk], flagelliform [unknown function in cob-weavers], aggregate [makes glue silk], aciniform [synthesizes prey wrapping and egg

  7. Black and brown widow spider bites in South Africa: A series of 45 ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Cases of black widow (Latrodectus indistinctus) and brown widow (L. geometricus) spider bites referred to the Tygerberg Pharmacology and' Toxicology Consultation Centre from the summer of 1987/88 to the summer of 1991/92 were entered into this series. Of a total of 45 patients, 30 had been bitten by black and 15 by ...

  8. Reversible Myocarditis and Pericarditis after Black Widow Spider Bite or Kounis Syndrome?

    OpenAIRE

    Yaman, Mehmet; Mete, Turkan; Ozer, Ismail; Yaman, Elif; Beton, Osman

    2015-01-01

    Clinical manifestation of black widow spider bite is variable and occasionally leads to death in rural areas. Cases of myocarditis and pericarditis after black widow spider bite are rare and the associated prognostic significance is unknown. Kounis syndrome has been defined as an acute coronary syndrome in the setting of allergic or hypersensitivity and anaphylactic or anaphylactoid insults that manifests as vasospastic angina or acute myocardial infarction or stent thrombosis. Allergic myoca...

  9. Recruitment and diversification of an ecdysozoan family of neuropeptide hormones for black widow spider venom expression

    OpenAIRE

    McCowan, Caryn; Garb, Jessica E.

    2013-01-01

    Venoms have attracted enormous attention because of their potent physiological effects and dynamic evolution, including the convergent recruitment of homologous genes for venom expression. Here we provide novel evidence for the recruitment of genes from the Crustacean Hyperglycemic Hormone (CHH) and arthropod Ion Transport Peptide (ITP) superfamily for venom expression in black widow spiders. We characterized latrodectin peptides from venom gland cDNAs from the Western black widow spider (Lat...

  10. The Treatment of Black Widow Spider Envenomation with Antivenin Latrodectus Mactans: A Case Series

    OpenAIRE

    Offerman, Steven R; Daubert, G Patrick; Clark, Richard F

    2011-01-01

    Black widow spiders (Latrodectus mactans) are found throughout the US. Though bites are relatively uncommon, they pose a significant health problem with over 2500 reported to American poison control centers annually. Black widow spider bites cause a characteristic envenomation syndrome consisting of severe pain, muscle cramping, abdominal pain, and back pain. The significant pain associated with envenomation is often refractory to traditional analgesics. Antivenom (Antivenin Latrodectus macta...

  11. Black widow spider (Latrodectus mactans) antivenom in clinical practice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monte, Andrew A

    2012-08-01

    Black widow spider (Latrodectus mactans) envenomation has been recognized since antiquity. The syndrome, latrodectism, is characterized by painful muscle rigidity and autonomic disturbances such as tachycardia, hypertension, and diaphoresis. Symptoms typically last for 1-3 days. Treatment has ranged from local folk remedies to administration of specific antivenom. Opioid analgesics combined with muscle relaxants, such as benzodiazepines, are only effective at symptomatic and temporary control. Antivenom is by far the most efficacious therapy available based on symptom resolution, need for subsequent therapy, and hospital admission rates. Fear of allergic type reactions from antivenom administration has limited its use in the United States. A new purified F(ab)2 fragment Latrodectus mactans antivenom, Analatro®, is currently undergoing clinical trials. The product is expected to have similar efficacy and be associated with fewer adverse reactions when compared to the currently available partially purified whole IgG Merck product. This shift in the risk-benefit analysis may ultimately lead to more antivenom administration in significantly envenomated patients.

  12. The treatment of black widow spider envenomation with antivenin latrodectus mactans: a case series.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Offerman, Steven R; Daubert, G Patrick; Clark, Richard F

    2011-01-01

    Black widow spiders (Latrodectus mactans) are found throughout the US. Though bites are relatively uncommon, they pose a significant health problem with over 2500 reported to American poison control centers annually. Black widow spider bites cause a characteristic envenomation syndrome consisting of severe pain, muscle cramping, abdominal pain, and back pain. The significant pain associated with envenomation is often refractory to traditional analgesics. Antivenom (Antivenin Latrodectus mactans) is available and effective, but is often withheld because of a fear of acute hypersensitivity reactions. We report four cases of symptomatic black widow spider envenomation. One of the reported cases was managed without antivenom, and, in contrast, three were treated successfully with Antivenin Latrodectus mactans. We believe that these cases demonstrate safe and effective use of black widow antivenom. This article presents the rationale for use of antivenom in these cases, and a nonsystematic review of the pertinent literature.

  13. Black widow spider toxins: the present and the future.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grishin, E V

    1998-11-01

    The venom of the black widow spider Latrodectus mactans tredisimguttatus was found to contain a family of high molecular weight toxic proteins inducing a sharp increase in transmitter secretion from the affected nerve endings, which are highly specific for vertebrates, or for insects, or for crustaceans. Along with the known alpha-latrotoxin, five latroinsectotoxins affecting the neurotransmitter release from presynaptic endings of insects and one latrocrustatoxin active only for crustaceans were isolated and studied in detail. Alpha-latrotoxin provokes a massive transmitter release from different nerve endings of vertebrates, whereas other toxins increase the secretion process either in insects or crustaceans. The cDNAs encoding the putative alpha-latrotoxin and two latroinsectotoxins (alpha-latroinsectotoxin and delta-latroinsectotoxin) precursors were cloned and sequenced. These toxins are polypeptides of about 1000 amino acids and share a high level of amino acid identity. Analysis of amino acid sequences of the three toxins reveals the central regions being almost entirely composed of series of ankyrin-like repeats. Taking into account the size and multifunctional properties of latrotoxin its molecule can be divided into several functional domains. Immunochemical experiments indicated the presence in the alpha-latrotoxin molecule of distinguishable functional domains responsible for ionophoric and secretogenic actions. The highly purified preparation of alpha-latrotoxin was shown to contain an additional component, a low molecular weight protein structurally related to crustacean hyperglycemic hormones. Several attempts were made to characterize and isolate alpha-latrotoxin receptor components. The existence of Ca-dependent and Ca-independent binding proteins was found in the presynaptic membrane preparations.

  14. Recruitment and diversification of an ecdysozoan family of neuropeptide hormones for black widow spider venom expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCowan, Caryn; Garb, Jessica E

    2014-02-25

    Venoms have attracted enormous attention because of their potent physiological effects and dynamic evolution, including the convergent recruitment of homologous genes for venom expression. Here we provide novel evidence for the recruitment of genes from the Crustacean Hyperglycemic Hormone (CHH) and arthropod Ion Transport Peptide (ITP) superfamily for venom expression in black widow spiders. We characterized latrodectin peptides from venom gland cDNAs from the Western black widow spider (Latrodectus hesperus), the brown widow (Latrodectus geometricus) and cupboard spider (Steatoda grossa). Phylogenetic analyses of these sequences with homologs from other spider, scorpion and wasp venom cDNAs, as well as CHH/ITP neuropeptides, show latrodectins as derived members of the CHH/ITP superfamily. These analyses suggest that CHH/ITP homologs are more widespread in spider venoms, and were recruited for venom expression in two additional arthropod lineages. We also found that the latrodectin 2 gene and nearly all CHH/ITP genes include a phase 2 intron in the same position, supporting latrodectin's placement within the CHH/ITP superfamily. Evolutionary analyses of latrodectins suggest episodes of positive selection along some sequence lineages, and positive and purifying selection on specific codons, supporting its functional importance in widow venom. We consider how this improved understanding of latrodectin evolution informs functional hypotheses regarding its role in black widow venom as well as its potential convergent recruitment for venom expression across arthropods. Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  15. Use of antivenin to treat priapism after a black widow spider bite.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoover, Nancy G; Fortenberry, James D

    2004-07-01

    Black widow spider envenomation (BWSE) is commonly associated with severe abdominal pain, muscle cramping, and hypertension. Treatment is primarily symptomatic with the use of opiates and benzodiazepines. Priapism is a complication of BWSE that has only rarely been reported. We describe a 17-month-old male who developed priapism after known BWSE. His priapism did not respond to opiates or benzodiazepines, and he was treated with black widow spider antivenin. Complete detumescence followed within several hours. The patient required no additional opiates for pain and was discharged from the hospital the following day. The patient's rapid improvement after antivenin suggests its efficacy in treating BWSE-associated priapism.

  16. Latrodectus mactans (black widow spider) envenomation: an unusual cause for abdominal pain in pregnancy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scalzone, J M; Wells, S L

    1994-05-01

    The differential diagnosis of abdominal pain in pregnancy is extensive. An important consideration in endemic areas is a bite by a black widow spider. A 30-year-old woman at 30 weeks' gestation presented with acute abdominal pain following an insect bite. We based the diagnosis on classic symptomatology in an area endemic for Latrodectus mactans. Treatment consisted of supportive therapy and observation. Symptoms resolved over 48 hours and did not recur. The patient delivered a healthy child at 40 weeks' gestation. In endemic areas, black widow spider envenomation should be part of the differential diagnosis of abdominal pain in pregnancy.

  17. Recognition and successful treatment of priapism and suspected black widow spider bite with antivenin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goel, Sheila Choudhury; Yabrodi, Mouhammad; Fortenberry, James

    2014-10-01

    Priapism, although uncommon in preadolescent children, is considered a true emergency. Envenomation by a black widow spider bite has been reported to induce priapism as a manifestation of its toxicity. Early recognition and timely administration of antivenin have been reported to be effective in relieving priapism. Clinicians who care for children need to be aware of this unusual presentation. The diagnosis is traditionally from either direct observation of a spider bite or capture of a spider. We report a case of a previously healthy 2-year-old boy who presented with severe irritability, leg cramps, and stomach ache. The diagnosis of a likely black widow spider envenomation was made on the basis of clinical suspicion and suggestive physical findings in absence of demonstrated exposure. This case highlights the importance of early recognition and successful resolution of symptoms with administration of antivenin and supportive care.

  18. Black widow spider bites experience from tertiary care center in Saudi Arabia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al Bshabshe, Ali; Alfaifi, Musa; Alsayed, Ahmed Fouad

    2017-01-01

    Black widow spiders are one of the most poisonous species to humans; there are more than 30 species of widow spiders in the globe but good thing that not all of them are dangerous. Some of these spiders produce toxic venoms, which cause broad spectrum of clinical manifestations including skin lesions, neurotoxicity, cardiac toxicity and death in some occasions. In Saudi Arabia there were no much reports of black widow spider bites apart from the case series by BUCUR and his group in ALBAHA region. In 2 years period a total of 8 patients were presented to the emergency departments diagnosed to have black widow spider bites based on description by the patients. 100 % of the cohort were males, aged between 25-58 years. The time between bite and presentation to emergency room was one hour in average (30 min to 4 hours). 75% occured during summer season. All of them 100% had one bite only and reported the bite to be at nighttime in 75% of the times. The average pain score at presentation was 4 /10.100% of the bites were in the lower extremities and almost all progressed to have lower back pain. Three patients had gastrointestinal tract manifestation in form of abdominal cramps and nausea. One had bilateral ptosis, none of them had cardiac or pulmonary complications. The outcome was excellent in all patients and the average of hospital stay was 2.5 days (1-5).

  19. Reversible Myocarditis and Pericarditis after Black Widow Spider Bite or Kounis Syndrome?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mehmet Yaman

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Clinical manifestation of black widow spider bite is variable and occasionally leads to death in rural areas. Cases of myocarditis and pericarditis after black widow spider bite are rare and the associated prognostic significance is unknown. Kounis syndrome has been defined as an acute coronary syndrome in the setting of allergic or hypersensitivity and anaphylactic or anaphylactoid insults that manifests as vasospastic angina or acute myocardial infarction or stent thrombosis. Allergic myocarditis is caused by myocardial inflammation triggered by infectious pathogens, toxic, ischemic, or mechanical injuries, such as drug-related inflammation and other immune reactions. A 15-year-old child was admitted to the emergency department with pulmonary edema after spider bite. ST segment depression on ECG, elevated cardiac enzymes and global left ventricular hypokinesia (with ejection fraction of 22%, and local pericardial effusion findings confirmed the diagnosis of myopericarditis. After heart failure and pulmonary edema oriented medical therapy, clinical status improved. Patient showed a progressive improvement and LV functions returned to normal on the sixth day. Myopericarditis complicating spider bite is rare and sometimes fatal. The mechanism is not clearly known. Alpha-latrotoxin of the black widow spider is mostly convicted in these cases. But allergy or hypersensitivity may play a role in myocardial damage.

  20. Reversible Myocarditis and Pericarditis after Black Widow Spider Bite or Kounis Syndrome?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yaman, Mehmet; Mete, Turkan; Ozer, Ismail; Yaman, Elif; Beton, Osman

    2015-01-01

    Clinical manifestation of black widow spider bite is variable and occasionally leads to death in rural areas. Cases of myocarditis and pericarditis after black widow spider bite are rare and the associated prognostic significance is unknown. Kounis syndrome has been defined as an acute coronary syndrome in the setting of allergic or hypersensitivity and anaphylactic or anaphylactoid insults that manifests as vasospastic angina or acute myocardial infarction or stent thrombosis. Allergic myocarditis is caused by myocardial inflammation triggered by infectious pathogens, toxic, ischemic, or mechanical injuries, such as drug-related inflammation and other immune reactions. A 15-year-old child was admitted to the emergency department with pulmonary edema after spider bite. ST segment depression on ECG, elevated cardiac enzymes and global left ventricular hypokinesia (with ejection fraction of 22%), and local pericardial effusion findings confirmed the diagnosis of myopericarditis. After heart failure and pulmonary edema oriented medical therapy, clinical status improved. Patient showed a progressive improvement and LV functions returned to normal on the sixth day. Myopericarditis complicating spider bite is rare and sometimes fatal. The mechanism is not clearly known. Alpha-latrotoxin of the black widow spider is mostly convicted in these cases. But allergy or hypersensitivity may play a role in myocardial damage.

  1. Molecular evolution of α-latrotoxin, the exceptionally potent vertebrate neurotoxin in black widow spider venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garb, Jessica E; Hayashi, Cheryl Y

    2013-05-01

    Black widow spiders (members of the genus Latrodectus) are widely feared because of their potent neurotoxic venom. α-Latrotoxin is the vertebrate-specific toxin responsible for the dramatic effects of black widow envenomation. The evolution of this toxin is enigmatic because only two α-latrotoxin sequences are known. In this study, ~4 kb α-latrotoxin sequences and their homologs were characterized from a diversity of Latrodectus species, and representatives of Steatoda and Parasteatoda, establishing the wide distribution of latrotoxins across the mega-diverse spider family Theridiidae. Across black widow species, α-latrotoxin shows ≥ 94% nucleotide identity and variability consistent with purifying selection. Multiple codon and branch-specific estimates of the nonsynonymous/synonymous substitution rate ratio also suggest a long history of purifying selection has acted on α-latrotoxin across Latrodectus and Steatoda. However, α-latrotoxin is highly divergent in amino acid sequence between these genera, with 68.7% of protein differences involving non-conservative substitutions, evidence for positive selection on its physiochemical properties and particular codons, and an elevated rate of nonsynonymous substitutions along α-latrotoxin's Latrodectus branch. Such variation likely explains the efficacy of red-back spider, L. hasselti, antivenom in treating bites from other Latrodectus species, and the weaker neurotoxic symptoms associated with Steatoda and Parasteatoda bites. Long-term purifying selection on α-latrotoxin indicates its functional importance in black widow venom, even though vertebrates are a small fraction of their diet. The greater differences between Latrodectus and Steatoda α-latrotoxin, and their relationships to invertebrate-specific latrotoxins, suggest a shift in α-latrotoxin toward increased vertebrate toxicity coincident with the evolution of widow spiders.

  2. House spider genome uncovers evolutionary shifts in the diversity and expression of black widow venom proteins associated with extreme toxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gendreau, Kerry L; Haney, Robert A; Schwager, Evelyn E; Wierschin, Torsten; Stanke, Mario; Richards, Stephen; Garb, Jessica E

    2017-02-16

    Black widow spiders are infamous for their neurotoxic venom, which can cause extreme and long-lasting pain. This unusual venom is dominated by latrotoxins and latrodectins, two protein families virtually unknown outside of the black widow genus Latrodectus, that are difficult to study given the paucity of spider genomes. Using tissue-, sex- and stage-specific expression data, we analyzed the recently sequenced genome of the house spider (Parasteatoda tepidariorum), a close relative of black widows, to investigate latrotoxin and latrodectin diversity, expression and evolution. We discovered at least 47 latrotoxin genes in the house spider genome, many of which are tandem-arrayed. Latrotoxins vary extensively in predicted structural domains and expression, implying their significant functional diversification. Phylogenetic analyses show latrotoxins have substantially duplicated after the Latrodectus/Parasteatoda split and that they are also related to proteins found in endosymbiotic bacteria. Latrodectin genes are less numerous than latrotoxins, but analyses show their recruitment for venom function from neuropeptide hormone genes following duplication, inversion and domain truncation. While latrodectins and other peptides are highly expressed in house spider and black widow venom glands, latrotoxins account for a far smaller percentage of house spider venom gland expression. The house spider genome sequence provides novel insights into the evolution of venom toxins once considered unique to black widows. Our results greatly expand the size of the latrotoxin gene family, reinforce its narrow phylogenetic distribution, and provide additional evidence for the lateral transfer of latrotoxins between spiders and bacterial endosymbionts. Moreover, we strengthen the evidence for the evolution of latrodectin venom genes from the ecdysozoan Ion Transport Peptide (ITP)/Crustacean Hyperglycemic Hormone (CHH) neuropeptide superfamily. The lower expression of latrotoxins in

  3. The black widow spider bite: differential diagnosis, clinical manifestations, and treatment options.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shackleford, Rodney; Veillon, Diana; Maxwell, Nicole; LaChance, Lisa; Jusino, Tamara; Cotelingam, James; Carrington, Patrick

    2015-01-01

    Unrecognized and untreated black widow spider bites cause significant pain, impairment, and rarely death. The widow venom, a powerful neurotoxin known as a-latrotoxin, causes muscle pain, diaphoresis, tachycardia, flushing, and hypertension. Treatment is usually symptomatic with a combination of opioid analgesics and muscle relaxants. If symptom resolution fails, an equine IgG antiserum is available, but a high index of clinical suspicion coupled with a knowledgeable patient history often allows successful treatment, especially when the treating physician possesses awareness of this type of bite and its usual course and possible complications.

  4. [The chromosomal genes for black widow spider neurotoxins do not contain introns].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danilevich, V N; Grishin, E V

    2000-12-01

    The overlapping fragments of the chromosomal DNA from black widow spider Latrodectus mactans carrying genes for high-molecular-mass protein neurotoxins, alpha- and delta-latroinsectotoxins (alpha-LIT and delta-LIT) and alpha-latrotoxin (alpha-LTX), were PCR-amplified and cloned. Restriction analysis of the PCR products showed that the distribution and sizes of the restriction fragments coincided with those deduced from the earlier sequencing of cDNAs of the corresponding genes. It thus followed that the alpha-LIT and delta-LIT genes are intronless. Along with our data on the structure of the alpha-latrocrustotoxin (alpha-LCT), this implies that the lack of introns is a common feature of the black widow spider genes encoding high molecular mass neurotoxins.

  5. Composition and Humidity Response of the Black Widow Spider's Gumfoot Silk and its Implications on Adhesion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jain, Dharamdeep; Zhang, Ci; Cool, Lydia Rose; Blackledge, Todd. A.; Wesdemiotis, Chrys; Miyoshi, Toshikazu; Dhinojwala, Ali

    Humidity plays an important part in the performance of biomaterials such as pollen, gecko toe, wheat awns, bird feathers and dragline silk. Capture silk produced by web building spiders form an interesting class of humidity responsive biological glues. The adhesive properties of the widely studied `viscid silk' produced by orbweb-weaving spiders is highly humidity sensitive. On the other hand, relatively less is known about the dependence of composition and humidity response towards adhesion for `gumfoot' silk produced by cobweb-weaving spiders. In the present study, we investigate the gumfoot silk produced by Black Widow using adhesion mechanics, microscopy and spectroscopic methods. The results show the presence of hygroscopic salts, glycoproteins and previously known spider coating peptides in silk and their importance in the humidity response and adhesion. The current study elucidates the role of constituents of capture silk in its adhesion mechanism and offers insights to novel ways for fabricating bio-inspired adhesives.

  6. Synaptic effects of low molecular weight components from Chilean Black Widow spider venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parodi, Jorge; Romero, Fernando

    2008-11-01

    alpha-Latrotoxin is the principal component of the venom from the euroasiatic Black Widow spider and has been studied for its pharmacological use as a synaptic modulator. Interestingly, smaller molecular weight fractions have been found to be associated with this toxin, but their cellular actions have not been studied in detail. The venom from the Chilean Black Widow spider (Latrodectus mactans) does not produce alpha-latrotoxin, however it does contain several small polypeptides. We have recently demonstrated cellular effects of these peptides at the synaptic level using whole-cell patch clamp techniques. Purified venom from the glands of L. mactans was studied in 12 DIV rat hippocampal neuronal cultures. Venom at a concentration of 10nM was able to decrease neuronal conductance thereby increasing membrane resistance. This effect on the passive properties of the neurons induced a change in action potential kinetics simulating the action of classic potassium channel blockers. These changes produced an increase in spontaneous synaptic activity in rat hippocampal cultures in the presence of the venom in a concentration- and time-dependent manner. These results indicate that venom from Chilean spider L. mactans is capable of increasing cell membrane resistance, prolonging the action potential and generating an increase in synaptic activity demonstrating an interesting pharmacological effect of these low molecular weight fragments.

  7. Mating system does not predict permanent sperm depletion in black widow spiders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Modanu, Maria; Michalik, Peter; Andrade, Maydianne C B

    2013-05-01

    Variation in sperm production is strongly influenced by mating system across taxa. Recent work in spiders suggests that males of some species show termination of spermatogenesis before their adult molt and thus an inability to produce sperm after maturation. This permanent sperm depletion (PSD) has been hypothesized to co-occur with monogyny, genital mutilation, or sexual cannibalism because the maintenance of continual sperm supplies is not necessary for species where males can expect only one mating opportunity. Here we test this hypothesis in two congeners exhibiting genital mutilation: the sexually cannibalistic, monogynous Australian redback spider Latrodectus hasselti and the polygynous Western black widow Latrodectus hesperus. We report that PSD does not occur in adult males of either species, and show that males transfer sperm into their copulatory organs multiple times as adults. These data suggest evolutionary links between mating system and investment in sperm production may be more complex than currently appreciated. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  8. Isolation and identification of a sodium channel-inhibiting protein from eggs of black widow spiders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Jianjun; Yan, Yizhong; Yu, Hai; Peng, Xiaozhen; Zhang, Yiya; Hu, Weijun; Duan, Zhigui; Wang, Xianchun; Liang, Songping

    2014-04-01

    The eggs of black widow spider (L. tredecimguttatus) have been demonstrated to be rich in biologically active components that exhibit great research value and application foreground. In the present study, a protein toxin, named Latroeggtoxin-II, was isolated from the eggs using the combination of gel filtration, ion exchange chromatography and reversed-phase high performance liquid chromatography. Electrospray mass spectrometric analysis indicated that the molecular weight of the protein was 28.69 kDa, and Edman degradation revealed that its N-terminal sequence was ESIQT STYVP NTPNQ KFDYE VGKDY-. After being abdominally injected into mice and P. americana, the protein could make the animals especially P. americana display a series of poisoning symptoms. Electrophysiological experiments demonstrated that the protein could selectively inhibit tetrodotoxin-resistant Na(+) channel currents in rat dorsal root ganglion neurons, without significant effect on the tetrodotoxin-sensitive Na(+) channel currents. Using multiple proteomic strategies, the purified protein was shown to have only a few similarities to the existing proteins in the databases, suggesting that it was a novel protein isolated from the eggs of black widow spiders. Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  9. [Cloning and structure of gene encoded alpha-latrocrustoxin from the Black widow spider venom].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danilevich, V N; Luk'ianov, S A; Grishin, E V

    1999-07-01

    The primary structure of the crusta gene encoding alpha-latrocrustoxin (alpha-LCT), a high molecular mass neurotoxin specific to crustaceans, was determined in the black widow spider Latrodectus mactans tredicimguttatus genome. The total length of the sequenced DNA was 4693 bp. The structural part of the black widow spider chromosome gene encoding alpha-LCT does not contain introns. The sequenced DNA contains a single extended open reading frame (4185 bp) and encodes a protein precursor of alpha-LCT, comprising 1395 aa. We assume the Met residue at position -10 relative to the N-terminal residue of Glu1 of the mature toxin to be the first one in the protein precursor. The calculated molecular mass of the precursor (156147 Da) exceeds that of the mature toxin by approximately 30 kDa. These data are in agreement with the notion that over the course of maturation the protein precursor undergoes double processing--cleavage of a decapeptide from the N-terminal part and of a approximately 200-aa fragment from the C-terminal part. alpha-LCT displayed a number of imperfect ankyrin-like repeats and areas of structural homology with earlier studied latrotoxins; the highest homology degree (62%) was revealed with alpha-latroinsectotoxin (alpha-LIT).

  10. Treatment of pediatric black widow spider envenomation: A national poison center's experience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glatstein, Miguel; Carbell, Gary; Scolnik, Dennis; Rimon, Ayelet; Hoyte, Christopher

    2017-11-06

    Black widow species (Latrodectus species) envenomation can produce a syndrome characterized by painful muscle rigidity and autonomic disturbances. Symptoms tend to be more severe in young children and adults. We describe black widow spider exposures and treatment in the pediatric age group, and investigate reasons for not using antivenom in severe cases. All black widow exposures reported to the Rocky Mountain Poison Center between January 1, 2012, and December 31, 2015, were reviewed. Demographic data were recorded. Patients were divided into 2 groups. Group 1: contact through families from their place of residence, public schools and/or cases where patients were not referred to healthcare facilities. Group 2: patient contact through healthcare facilities. 93 patients were included. Forty (43%) calls were in Group 1 and 53 (57%) in Group 2. Symptoms were evident in all victims; 43 (46.2%) were grade 1, 16 (17.2%) grade 2 and 34 (36.5%) grade 3, but only 14 patients (41.1%) of this group received antivenom. Antivenom use was associated with improvement of symptoms within minutes, and all treated patients were discharged within hours, without an analgesic requirement or any complications. Reasons for not receiving antivenom included: skin test positive (2/20), strong history of asthma or allergies (2/20), physician preference (2/20), non-availability of the antivenom at the health care facility (14/20). In our study, most symptomatic black widow envenomations were minor. Relatively few patients received antivenom, but antivenom use was associated with shorter symptom duration among moderate and major outcome groups. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  11. [Poisoning caused by Latrodectus Mactans (Black Widow) spider bite among children. Clinical features and therapy].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sotelo-Cruz, Norberto; Hurtado-Valenzuela, Jaime Gabriel; Gómez-Rivera, Norberto

    2006-01-01

    Poisoning caused by "black widow" spider bite, is not commonly observed during childhood, it is not exempt from complications, and must be treated in time or the patient can die. In Mexico we do not have accurate data on the exact number of accidents due to this condition. Identify the signs and characteristic symptoms of children treated at the Children's Hospital from the state of Sonora with the aim of starting early treatment. We reviewed 43 clinical records of hospitalized patients admitted for "black widow " spider bite between 1978 - 2004. Demographic variables were: age, gender, place of origin, place where accident took place, treatment given prior to hospital admittance, degree of envenomation measured by signs and symptoms, treatment and clinical evolution. 69.7% of cases were male, we did not find differences in the number of patients between infant, pre-school, elementary school children and teenagers. During summer and afternoon hours we registered 44% and 37% cases respectively; 74% patients were poisoned by the spider at home; the anatomical areas most affected were: arms, hands and thorax. Signs and symptoms in infants were: irritability, constanty cry, sialorrea, agitation erythema on wounded areas and seizures. Among elementary school children and teenagers signs included pain in wounded area, abdominal and thoracic, muscle spasms, fine tremor and residual signs. Patients who received fabotherapic treatment had better evolution and less time of hospitalization. No deaths were reported. The different signs and symptoms between infants, preschool, elementary school children and teenagers allowed us to clearly identify evenommation and differentiate it form confounding diseases. In our study, specific fabotherapy constituted the best treatment choice.

  12. Proteomic Evidence for Components of Spider Silk Synthesis from Black Widow Silk Glands and Fibers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaw, Ro Crystal; Correa-Garhwal, Sandra M; Clarke, Thomas H; Ayoub, Nadia A; Hayashi, Cheryl Y

    2015-10-02

    Spider silk research has largely focused on spidroins, proteins that are the primary components of spider silk fibers. Although a number of spidroins have been characterized, other types of proteins associated with silk synthesis are virtually unknown. Previous analyses of tissue-specific RNA-seq libraries identified 647 predicted genes that were differentially expressed in silk glands of the Western black widow, Latrodectus hesperus. Only ∼5% of these silk-gland specific transcripts (SSTs) encode spidroins; although the remaining predicted genes presumably encode other proteins associated with silk production, this is mostly unverified. Here, we used proteomic analysis of multiple silk glands and dragline silk fiber to investigate the translation of the differentially expressed genes. We find 48 proteins encoded by the differentially expressed transcripts in L. hesperus major ampullate, minor ampullate, and tubuliform silk glands and detect 17 SST encoded proteins in major ampullate silk fibers. The observed proteins include known silk-related proteins, but most are uncharacterized, with no annotation. These unannotated proteins likely include novel silk-associated proteins. Major and minor ampullate glands have the highest overlap of identified proteins, consistent with their shared, distinctive ampullate shape and the overlapping functions of major and minor ampullate silks. Our study substantiates and prioritizes predictions from differential expression analysis of spider silk gland transcriptomes.

  13. Extraction and identification of membrane proteins from black widow spider eggs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fu, Si-Ling; Li, Jiang-Lin; Chen, Jia; Wang, Qiu-Ting; Li, Jian-Jun; Wang, Xian-Chun

    2015-07-18

    The eggs of oviparous animals are storehouses of maternal proteins required for embryonic development. Identification and molecular characterization of such proteins will provide much insight into the regulation of embryonic development. We previously analyzed soluble proteins in the eggs of the black widow spider (Latrodectus tredecimguttatus), and report here on the extraction and mass spectrometric identification of the egg membrane proteins. Comparison of different lysis solutions indicated that the highest extraction of the membrane proteins was achieved with 3%-4% sodium laurate in 40 mmol/L Tris-HCl buffer containing 4% CHAPS and 2% DTT (pH 7.4). SDS-PAGE combined with nLC-MS/MS identified 39 proteins with membrane-localization annotation, including those with structural, catalytic, and regulatory activities. Nearly half of the identified membrane proteins were metabolic enzymes involved in various cellular processes, particularly energy metabolism and biosynthesis, suggesting that relevant metabolic processes were active during the embryonic development of the eggs. Several identified cell membrane proteins were involved in the special structure formation and function of the egg cell membranes. The present proteomic analysis of the egg membrane proteins provides new insight into the molecular mechanisms of spider embryonic development.

  14. Gumfooted lines in black widow cobwebs and the mechanical properties of spider capture silk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blackledge, Todd A; Summers, Adam P; Hayashi, Cheryl Y

    2005-01-01

    Orb-weaving spiders produce webs using two types of silk that have radically different mechanical properties. The dragline silk used to construct the supporting frame and radii of the web is stiff and as strong as steel, while the capture spiral is much weaker but more than ten times as extensible. This remarkable divergence in mechanical properties has been attributed to the aqueous glue that coats the capture spiral, which is thought to decrease capture spiral stiffness and increase its extensibility. However, discerning the effect of the aqueous glue on fiber performance is complicated because dragline silk and the capture spiral are assembled from different proteins, which may also affect mechanical performance. Here, we use the sticky gumfooted lines of black widow cobwebs to test the effect of the addition of aqueous glue on the mechanical properties of dragline silk. We also surveyed orb-webs spun by a broad range of species for bundles of looped silk. Such bundles, termed windlasses, have been thought to increase capture spiral extensibility by "paying out" additional lengths of silk. Our results suggest that neither plasticization of silk by aqueous glue nor excess silk in windlasses can by themselves account for the remarkable extensibility of orb-weaver capture silk compared to other spider silks. This argues that the unique amino acid motifs of the flagelliform fibroins that constitute the core of the capture spiral play an essential role in capture silk's extreme extensibility.

  15. Ultrastructure of the major ampullate gland of the black widow spider, Latrodectus hesperus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casem, Merri Lynn; Tran, Lan Phuong P; Moore, Anne M F

    2002-12-01

    Silk production in the spider occurs within specialized glands that are capable of the synthesis of large fibrous proteins and the post-translational processing of those proteins to form an insoluble fiber. The major ampullate gland of Latrodectus hesperus (black widow) is similar in morphology to those found in the Araneid spiders. The tail domain of this gland is highly protein synthetic, giving rise to a core, fibrous protein product. In addition to a storage function, the ampulla region also synthesizes and exports an electron dense material that appears to form a 'coat' surrounding the silk generated within the tail. The duct of the gland consists of at least two distinct cell types: one type contains 'honeycomb' vesicles of unknown function, while the other possesses elaborate apical microvilli that may be involved in the reabsorption of water and subsequent dehydration of the silk. As the silk product transits through these various stages of assembly, it can been seen to undergo a condensation or concentration, possibly reflecting the influence of both the shear forces induced by movement into the duct and the dehydration that is thought to occur there.

  16. [Neurotoxin of the black widow spider and its interaction with receptors from the rat brain].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ushkarev, Iu A; Grishin, E V

    1986-01-01

    A presynaptic neurotoxin isolated from the venom of the Central Asia spider karakurt (Black Widow Spider, Latrodectus mactans tredecimguttatus) is shown to consist of two identical subunits of mol. weight about 118 kDa. The iodinated neurotoxin binds to the rat brain synaptosomal plasma membranes with Kd 0.1 nM (Bmax 0.1 pmol/mg of protein) at 37 degrees C, and with Kd 0.35 nM (Bmax 0.2 pmol/mg of protein) at 5 degrees C. At intermediate temperatures both types of receptors are detectable. It is supposed that the dimeric form of the toxin interacts with a single class of receptors possessing lateral mobility in the membrane. By the use of different bifunctional reagents it is revealed that the neurotoxin interacts with a presynaptic membrane protein of mol. weight 95 kDa. A protein of the same size accompanied by a 71 kDa protein was isolated by the affinity chromatography of solubilized synaptosomal membranes on the absorbent, containing immobilized neurotoxin.

  17. The black widow spider genus Latrodectus (Araneae: Theridiidae): phylogeny, biogeography, and invasion history.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garb, Jessica E; González, Alda; Gillespie, Rosemary G

    2004-06-01

    The spider genus Latrodectus includes the widely known black widows, notorious because of the extreme potency of their neurotoxic venom. The genus has a worldwide distribution and comprises 30 currently recognized species, the phylogenetic relationships of which were previously unknown. Several members of the genus are synanthropic, and are increasingly being detected in new localities, an occurrence attributed to human mediated movement. In particular, the nearly cosmopolitan range of the brown widow, Latrodectus geometricus, is a suspected consequence of human transport. Although the taxonomy of the genus has been examined repeatedly, the recognition of taxa within Latrodectus has long been considered problematic due to the difficulty associated with identifying morphological features exhibiting discrete geographic boundaries. This paper presents, to our knowledge, the first phylogenetic hypothesis for the Latrodectus genus and is generated from DNA sequences of the mitochondrial gene cytochrome c oxidase subunit I. We recover two well-supported reciprocally monophyletic clades within the genus: (1) the geometricus clade, consisting of Latrodectus rhodesiensis from Africa, and its is sister species, the cosmopolitan L. geometricus, and (2) the mactans clade containing all other Latrodectus species sampled, including taxa occurring in Africa, the Middle East, Iberian Peninsula, Australia, New Zealand, and North and South America. Recovery of the geometricus and mactans clades is consistent with previous designations of species groups within the genus based on female genitalic morphology. All L. geometricus sampled, consisting of specimens from Africa, Argentina, North America, and Hawaii, were recovered as a strongly supported monophyletic group with minimal amounts of genetic divergence, corroborating the hypothesis that human transport has recently expanded the range of this species.

  18. In silico characterization of the neuropeptidome of the Western black widow spider Latrodectus hesperus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christie, Andrew E

    2015-01-01

    Technological advancements in high-throughput sequencing have resulted in the production/public deposition of an ever-growing number of arthropod transcriptomes. While most sequencing projects have focused on hexapods, transcriptomes have also been generated for members of the Chelicerata. One chelicerate for which a large transcriptome has recently been released is the Western black widow Latrodectus hesperus, a member of the Araneae (true spiders). Here, a neuropeptidome for L. hesperus was predicted using this resource. Thirty-eight peptide-encoding transcripts were mined from the L. hesperus transcriptome, with 216 distinct peptides predicted from the deduced pre/preprohormones. The identified peptides included members of the allatostatin A, allatostatin B, allatostatin C, allatotropin, bursicon α, bursicon β, CAPA/periviscerokinin/pyrokinin, CCHamide, corazonin, crustacean cardioactive peptide, crustacean hyperglycemic hormone/ion transport peptide, diuretic hormone 31, diuretic hormone 44, FMRFamide-like peptide (FLP), GSEFLamide, insulin-like peptide, neuropeptide F (NPF), orcokinin, proctolin, short neuropeptide F, SIFamide, sulfakinin and tachykinin-related peptide (TRP) families. Of particular note were the identifications of a carboxyl (C)-terminally extended corazonin, FLPs possessing -IMRFamide, -MMYFamide, and -MIHFamide C-termini, a NPF and a sulfakinin each ending in -RYamide rather than -RFamide, a precursor whose orcokinins include C-terminally amidated isoforms, and a collection of TRPs possessing -FXPXLamide rather than the stereotypical -FXGXLamide C-termini. The L. hesperus peptidome is by far the largest thus far published for any member of the Chelicerata. Taken collectively, these data serve as a reference for future neuropeptide discovery in the Araneae and provide a foundation for future studies of peptidergic control in L. hesperus and other spiders. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Co-segregation of sex chromosomes in the male black widow spider Latrodectus mactans (Araneae, Theridiidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ault, Jeffrey G; Felt, Kristen D; Doan, Ryan N; Nedo, Alexander O; Ellison, Cassondra A; Paliulis, Leocadia V

    2017-10-01

    During meiosis I, homologous chromosomes join together to form bivalents. Through trial and error, bivalents achieve stable bipolar orientations (attachments) on the spindle that eventually allow the segregation of homologous chromosomes to opposite poles. Bipolar orientations are stable through tension generated by poleward forces to opposite poles. Unipolar orientations lack tension and are stereotypically not stable. The behavior of sex chromosomes during meiosis I in the male black widow spider Latrodectus mactans (Araneae, Theridiidae) challenges the principles governing such a scenario. We found that male L. mactans has two distinct X chromosomes, X 1 and X 2 . The X chromosomes join together to form a connection that is present in prometaphase I but is lost during metaphase I, before the autosomes disjoin at anaphase I. We found that both X chromosomes form stable unipolar orientations to the same pole that assure their co-segregation at anaphase I. Using micromanipulation, immunofluorescence microscopy, and electron microscopy, we studied this unusual chromosome behavior to explain how it may fit the current dogma of chromosome distribution during cell division.

  20. Physiological and biochemical characterization of egg extract of black widow spiders to uncover molecular basis of egg toxicity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yizhong Yan

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Black widow spider (L. tredecimguttatus has toxic components not only in the venomous glands, but also in other parts of the body and its eggs. It is biologically important to investigate the molecular basis of the egg toxicity. RESULTS: In the present work, an aqueous extract was prepared from the eggs of the spider and characterized using multiple physiological and biochemical strategies. Gel electrophoresis and mass spectrometry demonstrated that the eggs are rich in high-molecular-mass proteins and the peptides below 5 kDa. The lyophilized extract of the eggs had a protein content of 34.22% and was shown to have a strong toxicity towards mammals and insects. When applied at a concentration of 0.25 mg/mL, the extract could completely block the neuromuscular transmission in mouse isolated phrenic nerve-hemidiaphragm preparations within 12.0 ± 1.5 min. Using whole-cell patch-clamp technique, the egg extract was demonstrated to be able to inhibit the voltage-activated Na+, K+and Ca2+ currents in rat DRG neurons. In addition, the extract displayed activities of multiple hydrolases. Finally, the molecular basis of the egg toxicity was discussed. CONCLUSIONS: The eggs of black widow spiders are rich in proteinous compounds particularly the high-molecular-mass proteins with different types of biological activity The neurotoxic and other active compounds in the eggs are believed to play important roles in the eggs' toxic actions.

  1. Physiological and biochemical characterization of egg extract of black widow spiders to uncover molecular basis of egg toxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Yizhong; Li, Jianjun; Zhang, Yiya; Peng, Xiaozhen; Guo, Tianyao; Wang, Jirong; Hu, Weijun; Duan, Zhigui; Wang, Xianchun

    2014-05-16

    Black widow spider (L. tredecimguttatus) has toxic components not only in the venomous glands, but also in other parts of the body and its eggs. It is biologically important to investigate the molecular basis of the egg toxicity. In the present work, an aqueous extract was prepared from the eggs of the spider and characterized using multiple physiological and biochemical strategies. Gel electrophoresis and mass spectrometry demonstrated that the eggs are rich in high-molecular-mass proteins and the peptides below 5 kDa. The lyophilized extract of the eggs had a protein content of 34.22% and was shown to have a strong toxicity towards mammals and insects. When applied at a concentration of 0.25 mg/mL, the extract could completely block the neuromuscular transmission in mouse isolated phrenic nerve-hemidiaphragm preparations within 12.0 ± 1.5 min. Using whole-cell patch-clamp technique, the egg extract was demonstrated to be able to inhibit the voltage-activated Na+, K+ and Ca2+ currents in rat DRG neurons. In addition, the extract displayed activities of multiple hydrolases. Finally, the molecular basis of the egg toxicity was discussed. The eggs of black widow spiders are rich in proteinous compounds particularly the high-molecular-mass proteins with different types of biological activity The neurotoxic and other active compounds in the eggs are believed to play important roles in the eggs' toxic actions.

  2. Isolation and Preliminary Characterization of Proteinaceous Toxins with Insecticidal and Antibacterial Activities from Black Widow Spider (L. tredecimguttatus Eggs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qian Lei

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available The eggs of black widow spider (L. tredecimguttatus have been demonstrated to be rich in toxic proteinaceous components. The study on such active components is of theoretical and practical importance. In the present work, using a combination of multiple biochemical and biological strategies, we isolated and characterized the proteinaceous components from the aqueous extract of the black widow spider eggs. After gel filtration of the egg extract, the resulting main protein and peptide peaks were further fractionated by ion exchange chromatography and reversed-phase high performance liquid chromatography. Two proteinaceous components, named latroeggtoxin-III and latroeggtoxin-IV, respectively, were purified to homogeneity. Latroeggtoxin-III was demonstrated to have a molecular weight of about 36 kDa. Activity analysis indicated that latroeggtoxin-III exhibited neurotoxicity against cockroaches but had no obvious effect on mice, suggesting that it is an insect-specific toxin. Latroeggtoxin-IV, with a molecular weight of 3.6 kDa, was shown to be a broad-spectrum antibacterial peptide, showing inhibitory activity against all five species of bacteria tested, with the highest activity against Staphylococcus aureus. Finally, the implications of the proteinaceous toxins in egg protection and their potential applications were analyzed and discussed.

  3. Purification and partial characterization of a novel neurotoxic protein from eggs of black widow spiders (Latrodectus tredecimguttatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Jianjun; Yan, Yizhong; Wang, Jirong; Guo, Tianyao; Hu, Weijun; Duan, Zhigui; Wang, Xianchun; Liang, Songping

    2013-07-01

    Up to now, there have been a few reports on the toxic components purified from black widow spider (Latrodectus tredecimguttatus) eggs. In the present study, a novel neurotoxic protein was purified from the eggs by gel filtration combined with ion-exchange chromatography. Its molecular weight was 23.752 kDa determined by electrospray mass spectrometry. The protein could block the neuromuscular transmission in mouse-isolated phrenic nerve-hemidiaphragm preparations completely in a reversible manner and activate tetrodotoxin-sensitive sodium current in rat dorsal root ganglion cells. The N-terminal sequence of the protein was identified by the Edman degradation to be N-S-I-A-D-D-R-Y-R-W-P-G-Y-P-G-A-G-L-I-P-Y-I-I-D-S-. When the sequence was used to search against protein database with a sequence query in Mascot engine there was no matched sequence or protein whereas the Basic Local Alignment Search Tool (BLAST) analysis indicated that no significant similarity was found. These results demonstrated that the protein (named Latroeggtoxin-I) is a novel neurotoxic protein purified from the eggs of black widow spiders. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  4. Isolation and preliminary characterization of proteinaceous toxins with insecticidal and antibacterial activities from black widow spider (L. tredecimguttatus) eggs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lei, Qian; Yu, Hai; Peng, Xiaozhen; Yan, Shuai; Wang, Jirong; Yan, Yizhong; Wang, Xianchun

    2015-03-16

    The eggs of black widow spider (L. tredecimguttatus) have been demonstrated to be rich in toxic proteinaceous components. The study on such active components is of theoretical and practical importance. In the present work, using a combination of multiple biochemical and biological strategies, we isolated and characterized the proteinaceous components from the aqueous extract of the black widow spider eggs. After gel filtration of the egg extract, the resulting main protein and peptide peaks were further fractionated by ion exchange chromatography and reversed-phase high performance liquid chromatography. Two proteinaceous components, named latroeggtoxin-III and latroeggtoxin-IV, respectively, were purified to homogeneity. Latroeggtoxin-III was demonstrated to have a molecular weight of about 36 kDa. Activity analysis indicated that latroeggtoxin-III exhibited neurotoxicity against cockroaches but had no obvious effect on mice, suggesting that it is an insect-specific toxin. Latroeggtoxin-IV, with a molecular weight of 3.6 kDa, was shown to be a broad-spectrum antibacterial peptide, showing inhibitory activity against all five species of bacteria tested, with the highest activity against Staphylococcus aureus. Finally, the implications of the proteinaceous toxins in egg protection and their potential applications were analyzed and discussed.

  5. [Electron microscopy of alpha-latrotoxin from the venom of the black widow spider Latrodectus mactans tredecimguttatus].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lunev, A V; Demin, V V; Zaĭtsev, O I; Spadir, S I; Grishin, E V

    1991-08-01

    Two-dimensional crystals of alpha-latrotoxin from the venom of black widow spider (Latrodectus mactans tredecimguttatus) were studied by the negative staining electron microscopy. Two-dimensional crystals were obtained by adsorption of the protein solution with a high Mg2+ concentration on carbon-coated electron microscopy grids. The crystals were about 0.4 mkm in size, had the unit cell parameters: a = b = 15.55 nm, gamma = 90 degrees, p4 plane group symmetry. The contour map of a stain-excluding region of such crystals was calculated by the Fourier-filtering procedure at about 4 nm resolution. The calculation of molecular weight of the unit cell, with the symmetry p4 taken into account, showed that alpha-latrotoxin particles, revealed by negative staining, consisted of 4 or 8 protomers.

  6. Aciniform spidroin, a constituent of egg case sacs and wrapping silk fibers from the black widow spider Latrodectus hesperus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vasanthavada, Keshav; Hu, Xiaoyi; Falick, Arnold M; La Mattina, Coby; Moore, Anne M F; Jones, Patrick R; Yee, Russell; Reza, Ryan; Tuton, Tiffany; Vierra, Craig

    2007-11-30

    Spiders produce high performance fibers with diverse mechanical properties and biological functions. Molecular and biochemical studies of spider egg case silk have revealed that the main constituent of the large diameter fiber contains the fibroin TuSp1. Here we demonstrate by SDS-PAGE and protein silver staining the presence of a distinct approximately 300-kDa polypeptide that is found in solubilized egg case sacs. Combining matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization tandem time-of-flight mass spectrometry and reverse genetics, we have isolated a novel gene called AcSp1-like and demonstrate that its protein product is assembled into the small diameter fibers of egg case sacs and wrapping silks from the black widow spider, Latrodectus hesperus. BLAST searches of the NCBInr protein data base using the amino acid sequence of AcSp1-like revealed similarity to AcSp1, an inferred protein proposed to be a component of wrapping silk. However, the AcSp1-like protein was found to display more nonuniformity in its internal iterated repeat modules than the putative AcSp1 fibroin. Real time quantitative PCR analysis demonstrates that the AcSp1-like gene displays an aciniform gland-restricted pattern of expression. The amino acid composition of the fibroins extracted from the luminal contents of the aciniform glands was remarkably similar to the predicted amino acid composition of the AcSp1-like protein, which supports the assertion that AcSp1-like protein represents the major constituent stored within the aciniform gland. Collectively, our findings provide the first direct molecular evidence for the involvement of the aciniform gland in the production of a common fibroin that is assembled into the small diameter threads of egg case and wrapping silk of cob weavers.

  7. Araneoid egg case silk: a fibroin with novel ensemble repeat units from the black widow spider, Latrodectus hesperus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Xiaoyi; Lawrence, Barbara; Kohler, Kristin; Falick, Arnold M; Moore, Anne M F; McMullen, Erin; Jones, Patrick R; Vierra, Craig

    2005-08-02

    Araneoid spiders use specialized abdominal glands to manufacture up to seven different protein-based silks/glues that have diverse physical properties. The fibroin sequences that encode egg case fibers (cover silk for the egg case sac) and the secondary structure of these threads have not been previously determined. In this study, MALDI tandem TOF mass spectrometry (MS/MS) and reverse genetics were used to isolate the first egg case fibroin, named tubuliform spidroin 1 (TuSp1), from the black widow spider, Latrodectus hesperus. Real-time quantitative PCR analysis demonstrates TuSp1 is selectively expressed in the tubuliform gland. Analysis of the amino acid composition of raw egg case silk closely aligns with the predicted amino acid composition from the primary sequence of TuSp1, which supports the assertion that TuSp1 represents a major component of egg case fibers. TuSp1 is composed of highly homogeneous repeats that are 184 amino acids in length. The long stretches of polyalanine and glycine-alanine subrepeats, which account for the crystalline regions of minor ampullate and major ampullate fibers, are very poorly represented in TuSp1. However, polyserine blocks and short polyalanine stretches were highly iterated within the primary sequence, and (13)C NMR spectroscopy demonstrated that the majority of alanine was found in a beta-sheet structure in post-spun egg case silk. The TuSp1 repeat unit does not display substantial sequence similarity to any previously described fibroin genes or proteins, suggesting that TuSp1 is a highly divergent member of the spider silk gene family.

  8. Multi-tissue transcriptomics of the black widow spider reveals expansions, co-options, and functional processes of the silk gland gene toolkit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, Thomas H; Garb, Jessica E; Hayashi, Cheryl Y; Haney, Robert A; Lancaster, Alexander K; Corbett, Susan; Ayoub, Nadia A

    2014-05-23

    Spiders (Order Araneae) are essential predators in every terrestrial ecosystem largely because they have evolved potent arsenals of silk and venom. Spider silks are high performance materials made almost entirely of proteins, and thus represent an ideal system for investigating genome level evolution of novel protein functions. However, genomic level resources remain limited for spiders. We de novo assembled a transcriptome for the Western black widow (Latrodectus hesperus) from deeply sequenced cDNAs of three tissue types. Our multi-tissue assembly contained ~100,000 unique transcripts, of which > 27,000 were annotated by homology. Comparing transcript abundance among the different tissues, we identified 647 silk gland-specific transcripts, including the few known silk fiber components (e.g. six spider fibroins, spidroins). Silk gland specific transcripts are enriched compared to the entire transcriptome in several functions, including protein degradation, inhibition of protein degradation, and oxidation-reduction. Phylogenetic analyses of 37 gene families containing silk gland specific transcripts demonstrated novel gene expansions within silk glands, and multiple co-options of silk specific expression from paralogs expressed in other tissues. We propose a transcriptional program for the silk glands that involves regulating gland specific synthesis of silk fiber and glue components followed by protecting and processing these components into functional fibers and glues. Our black widow silk gland gene repertoire provides extensive expansion of resources for biomimetic applications of silk in industry and medicine. Furthermore, our multi-tissue transcriptome facilitates evolutionary analysis of arachnid genomes and adaptive protein systems.

  9. [A crustacean-specific neurotoxin from the venom of the black widow spider Latrodectus mactans tredecimguttatus].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krasnoperov, V G; Shamotienko, O G; Grishin, E V

    1990-11-01

    A method of the isolation of a crustacea-specific neurotoxin from the venom of the Latrodectus mactans tredecimguttatus spider by means of ion exchange chromatography on Mono Q and Mono S columns and hydrophobic chromatography on Phenyl-Superose column has been developed. LD50 of the toxin has been elucidated.

  10. Vibration transmission through sheet webs of hobo spiders (Eratigena agrestis) and tangle webs of western black widow spiders (Latrodectus hesperus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vibert, Samantha; Scott, Catherine; Gries, Gerhard

    2016-11-01

    Web-building spiders construct their own vibratory signaling environments. Web architecture should affect signal design, and vice versa, such that vibratory signals are transmitted with a minimum of attenuation and degradation. However, the web is the medium through which a spider senses both vibratory signals from courting males and cues produced by captured prey. Moreover, webs function not only in vibration transmission, but also in defense from predators and the elements. These multiple functions may impose conflicting selection pressures on web design. We investigated vibration transmission efficiency and accuracy through two web types with contrasting architectures: sheet webs of Eratigena agrestis (Agelenidae) and tangle webs of Latrodectus hesperus (Theridiidae). We measured vibration transmission efficiencies by playing frequency sweeps through webs with a piezoelectric vibrator and a loudspeaker, recording the resulting web vibrations at several locations on each web using a laser Doppler vibrometer. Transmission efficiencies through both web types were highly variable, with within-web variation greater than among-web variation. There was little difference in transmission efficiencies of longitudinal and transverse vibrations. The inconsistent transmission of specific frequencies through webs suggests that parameters other than frequency are most important in allowing these spiders to distinguish between vibrations of prey and courting males.

  11. Monoclonal antibody fragment from combinatorial phage display library neutralizes alpha-latrotoxin activity and abolishes black widow spider venom lethality, in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bugli, Francesca; Graffeo, Rosalia; Paroni Sterbini, Francesco; Torelli, Riccardo; Masucci, Luca; Sali, Michela; Grasso, Alfonso; Rufini, Stefano; Ricci, Enzo; Fadda, Giovanni; Pescatori, Mario

    2008-03-15

    Alpha-latrotoxin (alpha-ltx), a component of the venom of black widow spiders (BWSV), binds to higher vertebrates presynaptic nerve terminals, stimulating massive neurotransmitter release. This neurotoxic protein is responsible for most of the symptoms elicited in men by the bite of black widow spider (BWS), i.e. a neurological syndrome named latrodectism. By reasoning that targeting this single component would abrogate most of the effect of BWS envenomation, we took advantage of the antibody phage display technology to generate monoclonal Fab fragments able to bind and neutralize the alpha-ltx. To this aim, we immunized Balb/c mice with purified toxin and cloned their antibody repertoire in the pCombIII phage display vector. By combining a high-stringency affinity selection with a sensitive 45Ca(2+) uptake assay, we isolated a Fab fragment (FM1) able to bind the alpha-ltx in the low nM range and neutralize its ionophore activity, in vitro and in vivo. After the onset of overt symptomatology, administration of FM1 to experimentally envenomed mice induced remission of symptoms and prevented lethality. Since alpha-ltx is the only molecule responsible for the great toxicity of BWS bites in mammals, the FM1 Fab, highly effective in neutralizing the toxin in vivo, represents a promising immunotherapy reagent for treating latrodectic patients.

  12. From the black widow spider to human behavior: Latrophilins, a relatively unknown class of G protein-coupled receptors, are implicated in psychiatric disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinez, Ariel F; Muenke, Maximilian; Arcos-Burgos, Mauricio

    2011-01-01

    The findings of a recent study associate LPHN3, a member of the latrophilin family, with an increased risk of developing attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), the most common psychiatric disorder in childhood and adolescence. Latrophilins comprise a new family of G protein-coupled receptors of unknown native physiological function that mediate the neurotoxic effects of α-latrotoxin, a potent toxin found in black widow spider venom. This receptor-toxin interaction has helped to elucidate the mechanistic aspects of neurotransmitter and hormone release in vertebrates. Such unprecedented discovery points to a new direction in the assessment of ADHD and suggest that further study of this receptor family may provide novel insights into the etiology and treatment of ADHD and other related psychiatric conditions. Copyright © 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  13. The geometry of the ionic chànnel lumen formed by alpha-latroinsectotoxin from black widow spider venom in the bilayer lipid membranes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shatursky, Oleg Ya; Volkova, Tatyana M; Himmelreich, Nina H; Grishin, Eugene V

    2007-11-01

    The dependence of single channel conductance formed by alpha-latroinsectotoxin (alpha-LIT) from black widow spider venom in the planar phospholipid membrane on the hydrodynamic radii of different nonelectrolytes allowed to determine the geometry of alpha-LIT water lumen. It was found that the cis- and trans-entrances of alpha-LIT channel had the same effective radii of 0.55-0.58 nm. Relatively small conductance of alpha-LIT channel (23.5+3.7 pS) in a symmetrical membrane bathing solution of 100 mM KCl (pH 7.4) may result from the constriction inside the channel with apparent radius of 0.37 nm located 32.5% of channel length away from the cis-entrance.

  14. [Study of the receptor for black widow spider neurotoxin. I. Characteristics of membrane-bound and solubilized receptors from the bovine brain].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petrenko, A G; Shamotienko, O G; Surkova, I N; Kovalenko, V A; Grishin, E V

    1990-02-01

    Iodine-125 labelled alpha-latrotoxin from the venom of Central Asia black widow spider Latrodectus mactans tredecimguttatus binds specifically to the bovine brain membrane receptor producing a stable slowly dissociating complex with Kd = 1.6 x 10(-10) M and Bmax = 0.5 pmol/mg protein. Treatment of the complex with alkaline high-salt buffer induces reversible dissociation of the bound toxin. The antitoxin polyclonal antibody does not increase the dissociation rate of the bound toxin. Wheat germ lectin as well as concanavalin A inhibit the toxin binding to the membrane receptor. The receptor is solubilized with ionic and non-ionic detergents, and methods of latrotoxin binding assay are developed. The solubilized receptor is shown to retain high affinity to toxin, its binding activity being stable but critically dependent on the presence of calcium ions. Chromatographic properties of the receptor suggest its glycoprotein nature.

  15. A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of a highly purified equine F(ab)2 antibody black widow spider antivenom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dart, Richard C; Bogdan, Gregory; Heard, Kennon; Bucher Bartelson, Becki; Garcia-Ubbelohde, Walter; Bush, Sean; Arnold, Tom; Clark, Richard C; Hendey, Gregory W; Holstege, Christopher; Spradley, Elizabeth A

    2013-04-01

    Black widow spider antivenom has never been tested in a randomized clinical trial, to our knowledge. We explore various efficacy measures for a novel F(ab)2 antivenom in patients with moderate to severe pain caused by black widow spider envenomation. A randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind, clinical trial was conducted in 12 academic emergency departments. We included patients at least 10 years old with moderate to severe latrodectism. Subjects received either a single intravenous infusion of antivenom or placebo. Pain was assessed with the visual analog scale. The primary efficacy outcome was the difference in pre- and posttreatment visual analog scale score. Prospectively defined secondary outcomes included treatment failures and time to clinically important decrease in pain. Twenty-four subjects were enrolled between October 2005 and October 2006; 13 were randomized to antivenom and 11 to placebo. The median change in visual analog scale at 150 minutes posttreatment was -50.0 mm (Interquartile Range [IQR] -67, -41 mm) in the antivenom treatment group and -46.0 mm (IQR -51, 0 mm) in the placebo treatment group (P=.14). There were 7 treatment failures (64%; 95% confidence interval 35% to 92%) in the placebo group and 3 (23%; 95% confidence interval 0.2% to 46%) in the antivenom group (P=.06). The median time to a clinically important decrease in pain after treatment was shorter in the antivenom group compared with the placebo group (30 minutes [IQR 30, 60 minutes] versus 90 minutes [IQR 30, 90 minutes]; P=.03). No serious adverse events or deaths were reported. Although the overall reduction in pain was similar for antivenom- and placebo-treated subjects, antivenom reduced pain more rapidly than placebo. No significant adverse events occurred in either group. Copyright © 2012. Published by Mosby, Inc.

  16. Pyriform spidroin 1, a novel member of the silk gene family that anchors dragline silk fibers in attachment discs of the black widow spider, Latrodectus hesperus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blasingame, Eric; Tuton-Blasingame, Tiffany; Larkin, Leah; Falick, Arnold M; Zhao, Liang; Fong, Justine; Vaidyanathan, Veena; Visperas, Anabelle; Geurts, Paul; Hu, Xiaoyi; La Mattina, Coby; Vierra, Craig

    2009-10-16

    Spiders spin high performance threads that have diverse mechanical properties for specific biological applications. To better understand the molecular mechanism by which spiders anchor their threads to a solid support, we solubilized the attachment discs from black widow spiders and performed in-solution tryptic digests followed by MS/MS analysis to identify novel peptides derived from glue silks. Combining matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization tandem time-of-flight mass spectrometry and cDNA library screening, we isolated a novel member of the silk gene family called pysp1 and demonstrate that its protein product is assembled into the attachment disc silks. Alignment of the PySp1 amino acid sequence to other fibroins revealed conservation in the non-repetitive C-terminal region of the silk family. MS/MS analysis also confirmed the presence of MaSp1 and MaSp2, two important components of dragline silks, anchored within the attachment disc materials. Characterization of the ultrastructure of attachment discs using scanning electron microscopy studies support the localization of PySp1 to small diameter fibers embedded in a glue-like cement, which network with large diameter dragline silk threads, producing a strong, adhesive material. Consistent with elevated PySp1 mRNA levels detected in the pyriform gland, MS analysis of the luminal contents extracted from the pyriform gland after tryptic digestion support the assertion that PySp1 represents one of the major constituents manufactured in the pyriform gland. Taken together, our data demonstrate that PySp1 is spun into attachment disc silks to help affix dragline fibers to substrates, a critical function during spider web construction for prey capture and locomotion.

  17. Pyriform Spidroin 1, a Novel Member of the Silk Gene Family That Anchors Dragline Silk Fibers in Attachment Discs of the Black Widow Spider, Latrodectus hesperus*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blasingame, Eric; Tuton-Blasingame, Tiffany; Larkin, Leah; Falick, Arnold M.; Zhao, Liang; Fong, Justine; Vaidyanathan, Veena; Visperas, Anabelle; Geurts, Paul; Hu, Xiaoyi; La Mattina, Coby; Vierra, Craig

    2009-01-01

    Spiders spin high performance threads that have diverse mechanical properties for specific biological applications. To better understand the molecular mechanism by which spiders anchor their threads to a solid support, we solubilized the attachment discs from black widow spiders and performed in-solution tryptic digests followed by MS/MS analysis to identify novel peptides derived from glue silks. Combining matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization tandem time-of-flight mass spectrometry and cDNA library screening, we isolated a novel member of the silk gene family called pysp1 and demonstrate that its protein product is assembled into the attachment disc silks. Alignment of the PySp1 amino acid sequence to other fibroins revealed conservation in the non-repetitive C-terminal region of the silk family. MS/MS analysis also confirmed the presence of MaSp1 and MaSp2, two important components of dragline silks, anchored within the attachment disc materials. Characterization of the ultrastructure of attachment discs using scanning electron microscopy studies support the localization of PySp1 to small diameter fibers embedded in a glue-like cement, which network with large diameter dragline silk threads, producing a strong, adhesive material. Consistent with elevated PySp1 mRNA levels detected in the pyriform gland, MS analysis of the luminal contents extracted from the pyriform gland after tryptic digestion support the assertion that PySp1 represents one of the major constituents manufactured in the pyriform gland. Taken together, our data demonstrate that PySp1 is spun into attachment disc silks to help affix dragline fibers to substrates, a critical function during spider web construction for prey capture and locomotion. PMID:19666476

  18. Characterization of a novel class II bHLH transcription factor from the black widow spider, Latrodectus hesperus, with silk-gland restricted patterns of expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohler, Kristin; Thayer, William; Le, Trang; Sembhi, Amardeep; Vasanthavada, Keshav; Moore, Anne M F; Vierra, Craig A

    2005-06-01

    Members of the basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) family are required for a number of different developmental pathways, including lymphopoiesis, myogenesis, neurogenesis, and sex determination. Screening a cDNA library prepared from silk-producing glands of the black widow spider, we have identified a new bHLH transcription factor named SGSF. Within the bHLH region, SGSF showed considerable conservation with other HLH proteins, including Drosophila melanogaster achaete and scute, as well as three HLH proteins identified by gene prediction programs. The expression pattern of SGSF was restricted to a subset of silk-producing glands, which include the tubuliform and major ampullate glands. SGSF was capable of binding an E-box element as a heterodimer with the E protein, E47, but was unable to bind this motif as a homodimer. SGSF was demonstrated to be a nuclear transcription factor capable of attenuating the transactivation of E47 homodimers in mammalian cells. SGSF represents the first example of a silk gland-restricted bHLH protein, and its expression pattern suggests that SGSF plays a role in regulating differentiation of cells in the spider that control silk gland formation or egg case silk gene expression.

  19. Magnetic field decay in black widow pulsars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mendes, Camile; de Avellar, Marcio G. B.; Horvath, J. E.; Souza, Rodrigo A. de; Benvenuto, O. G.; De Vito, M. A.

    2018-04-01

    We study in this work the evolution of the magnetic field in `redback-black widow' pulsars. Evolutionary calculations of these `spider' systems suggest that first the accretion operates in the redback stage, and later the companion star ablates matter due to winds from the recycled pulsar. It is generally believed that mass accretion by the pulsar results in a rapid decay of the magnetic field when compared to the rate of an isolated neutron star. We study the evolution of the magnetic field in black widow pulsars by solving numerically the induction equation using the modified Crank-Nicolson method with intermittent episodes of mass accretion on to the neutron star. Our results show that the magnetic field does not fall below a minimum value (`bottom field') in spite of the long evolution time of the black widow systems, extending the previous conclusions for much younger low-mass X-ray binary systems. We find that in this scenario, the magnetic field decay is dominated by the accretion rate, and that the existence of a bottom field is likely related to the fact that the surface temperature of the pulsar does not decay as predicted by the current cooling models. We also observe that the impurity of the pulsar crust is not a dominant factor in the decay of magnetic field for the long evolution time of black widow systems.

  20. Neuropeptide discovery in the Araneae (Arthropoda, Chelicerata, Arachnida): elucidation of true spider peptidomes using that of the Western black widow as a reference.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christie, Andrew E; Chi, Megan

    2015-03-01

    The public deposition of large transcriptome shotgun assembly (TSA) datasets for the Araneae (true spiders) provides a resource for determining the structures of the native neuropeptides present in members of this chelicerate order. Here, the Araneae TSA data were mined for putative peptide-encoding transcripts using the recently deduced neuropeptide precursors from the Western black widow Latrodectus hesperus as query templates. Neuropeptide-encoding transcripts from five spiders, Latrodectus tredecimguttatus, Stegodyphus mimosarum, Stegodyphus lineatus, Stegodyphus tentoriicola and Acanthoscurria geniculata, were identified, including ones encoding members of the allatostatin A, allatostatin B, allatostatin C, allatotropin, CAPA/periviscerokinin/pyrokinin, crustacean cardioactive peptide, crustacean hyperglycemic hormone/ion transport peptide, diuretic hormone 31, diuretic hormone 44, eclosion hormone, FMRFamide-like peptide (FLP), GSEFLamide, insulin-like peptide, orcokinin, proctolin, short neuropeptide F, SIFamide, sulfakinin and tachykinin-related peptide (TRP) families. A total of 156 distinct peptides were predicted from the precursor proteins deduced from the S. mimosarum transcripts, with 65, 26, 21 and 12 peptides predicted from those deduced from the A. geniculata, L. tredecimguttatus, S. lineatus and S. tentoriicola sequences, respectively. Among the peptides identified were variant isoforms of FLP, orcokinin and TRP, peptides whose structures are similar to ones previously identified from L. hesperus. The prediction of these atypical peptides from multiple spiders suggests that they may be broadly conserved within the Araneae rather than being species-specific variants. Taken collectively, the data described here greatly expand the number of known Araneae neuropeptides, providing a foundation for future functional studies of peptidergic signaling in this important Chelicerate order. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. First report of brown widow spider sightings in Peninsular Malaysia and notes on its global distribution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muslimin, Mustakiza; Wilson, John-James; Ghazali, Amir-Ridhwan M; Braima, Kamil A; Jeffery, John; Wan-Nor, Fitri; Alaa-Eldin, Mohamed E; Mohd-Zin, Siti-Waheeda; Wan-Yusoff, Wan S; Norma-Rashid, Yusoff; Lau, Yee L; Rohela, Mahmud; Abdul-Aziz, Noraishah M

    2015-01-01

    The brown widow spider (Latrodectus geometricus Koch, 1841) has colonised many parts of the world from its continent of origin, Africa. By at least 1841, the species had successfully established populations in South America and has more recently expanded its range to the southern states of North America. This highly adaptable spider has been far more successful in finding its niche around the world than its famous cousins, the black widow, Latrodectus mactans, found in the south-eastern states of North America, and the red-back, Latrodectus hasselti, found mostly in Australia, New Zealand and Japan. We performed an extensive web search of brown widow sightings and mapped the location of each sighting using ArcGIS. Specimens reputedly of the species L. geometricus were collected at three localities in Peninsular Malaysia. The spiders were identified and documented based on an examination of morphological characteristics and DNA barcoding. The spiders found in Peninsular Malaysia were confirmed to be Latrodectus geometricus based on their morphological characteristics and DNA barcodes. We recorded 354 sightings of the brown widow in 58 countries, including Peninsular Malaysia. Reports from the Americas and the Far East suggest a global-wide invasion of the brown widow spider. Herein we report the arrival of the brown widow spider in Peninsular Malaysia and provide notes on the identification of the species and its recently expanded range.

  2. The diet of the black widow spider Latrodectus mirabilis (Theridiidae in two cereal crops of central Argentina

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    Gabriel Pompozzi

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The spider Latrodectus mirabilis (Holmberg, 1876 is commonly found in cereals crops of central Argentina. We studied its diet composition at the field and capture rate on leaf-cutting ants based on laboratory experiments. This study comprises the first approach that documents the diet of L. mirabilis in wheat and oat fields of central Argentina. We identified 1,004 prey items collected from its webs during the last phenological stages of both cereal crops. The prey composition was variable but the spiders prey mainly on ants (Formicidae, Hymenoptera, who represented more than 86% of the total. Meanwhile, in the capture rate experiences we registered a high proportion of ants captured by spiders at the beginning of experiences, capturing the half of the ants from total in the first four hours. Summarizing, we reported a polyphagous diet of this spider species in wheat and oat fields. Ants were the most important prey item of this spider, as found in other Latrodectus spiders around the world.

  3. Preparation and properties of a neurotoxin purified from the venom of black widow spider (Latrodectus mactans tredecimguttatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grasso, A

    1976-08-09

    A neurotoxin of the venom of the spider Latrodectus mactans tredecimguttatus, has been prepared in a homogeneous form and examined by a variety of techniques. The protein has a molecular weight of 130 000 and its toxicity in mice is about 49 000 LD50 mg pure protein/g body weight. The toxin releases norepinephrine from synaptosomes prepared from rat brain and shows most of the toxic effects of the crude venom preparation.

  4. Acidic Residues Control the Dimerization of the N-terminal Domain of Black Widow Spiders' Major Ampullate Spidroin 1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer, Joschka; Schaal, Daniel; Eisoldt, Lukas; Schweimer, Kristian; Schwarzinger, Stephan; Scheibel, Thomas

    2016-09-29

    Dragline silk is the most prominent amongst spider silks and comprises two types of major ampullate spidroins (MaSp) differing in their proline content. In the natural spinning process, the conversion of soluble MaSp into a tough fiber is, amongst other factors, triggered by dimerization and conformational switching of their helical amino-terminal domains (NRN). Both processes are induced by protonation of acidic residues upon acidification along the spinning duct. Here, the structure and monomer-dimer-equilibrium of the domain NRN1 of Latrodectus hesperus MaSp1 and variants thereof have been investigated, and the key residues for both could be identified. Changes in ionic composition and strength within the spinning duct enable electrostatic interactions between the acidic and basic pole of two monomers which prearrange into an antiparallel dimer. Upon naturally occurring acidification this dimer is stabilized by protonation of residue E114. A conformational change is independently triggered by protonation of clustered acidic residues (D39, E76, E81). Such step-by-step mechanism allows a controlled spidroin assembly in a pH- and salt sensitive manner, preventing premature aggregation of spider silk proteins in the gland and at the same time ensuring fast and efficient dimer formation and stabilization on demand in the spinning duct.

  5. Protein compositional analysis of the eggs of black widow spider (Latrodectus tredecimguttatus): implications for the understanding of egg toxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Jianjun; Liu, Hui; Duan, Zhigui; Cao, Rui; Wang, Xianchun; Liang, Songping

    2012-12-01

    Previous work found that high-molecular-weight fractions in the egg extract of Latrodectus tredecimguttatus exhibited strong toxicities. For investigating the possible relationship of proteins in the eggs with the toxic effect, the protein composition of the eggs was analyzed using proteomic strategies and compared with that of the spider's venom. SDS-PAGE showed that the proteins of eggs were primarily distributed in the molecular weight range of higher than 55 kDa as well as around 34 kDa, having high abundance proteins with molecular weights of about 60 kDa and 130 kDa. A total of 157 proteins were identified from the egg extract, which were involved in important cellular functions and processes including catalysis, transport, and metabolism regulation. Comparison indicated that the protein composition of eggs is more complex than that of venom, and there are few similarities between the protein composition of the two materials, demonstrating that the eggs have their own distinct toxic mechanism. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  6. Acute urinary retention after Black Widow envenomation: a case report.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carere, Matthew; Sterret, Russel; Timmerman, Nicholas; Taylor, Ian

    2017-10-16

    Latrodectism following Black Widow envenomation is rare in Canada. We present the case of a previously healthy 50 year old male who presented with an acute abdomen, hypertension, and urinary retention. After a thorough work up it was determined to be as a result of a Black Widow spider bite. Due to climate change we may see more cases of Latrodectism in the future and it should be considered as a differential diagnosis in anyone presenting with an acute abdomen after an insect bite.

  7. Comprehensive Proteomic Analysis of Spider Dragline Silk from Black Widows: A Recipe to Build Synthetic Silk Fibers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larracas, Camille; Hekman, Ryan; Dyrness, Simmone; Arata, Alisa; Williams, Caroline; Crawford, Taylor; Vierra, Craig A

    2016-09-13

    The outstanding material properties of spider dragline silk fibers have been attributed to two spidroins, major ampullate spidroins 1 and 2 (MaSp1 and MaSp2). Although dragline silk fibers have been treated with different chemical solvents to elucidate the relationship between protein structure and fiber mechanics, there has not been a comprehensive proteomic analysis of the major ampullate (MA) gland, its spinning dope, and dragline silk using a wide range of chaotropic agents, inorganic salts, and fluorinated alcohols to elucidate their complete molecular constituents. In these studies, we perform in-solution tryptic digestions of solubilized MA glands, spinning dope and dragline silk fibers using five different solvents, followed by nano liquid chromatography coupled to tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) analysis with an Orbitrap Fusion™ Tribrid™. To improve protein identification, we employed three different tryptic peptide fragmentation modes, which included collision-induced dissociation (CID), electron transfer dissociation (ETD), and high energy collision dissociation (HCD) to discover proteins involved in the silk assembly pathway and silk fiber. In addition to MaSp1 and MaSp2, we confirmed the presence of a third spidroin, aciniform spidroin 1 (AcSp1), widely recognized as the major constituent of wrapping silk, as a product of dragline silk. Our findings also reveal that MA glands, spinning dope, and dragline silk contain at least seven common proteins: three members of the Cysteine-Rich Protein Family (CRP1, CRP2 and CRP4), cysteine-rich secretory protein 3 (CRISP3), fasciclin and two uncharacterized proteins. In summary, this study provides a proteomic blueprint to construct synthetic silk fibers that most closely mimic natural fibers.

  8. Comprehensive Proteomic Analysis of Spider Dragline Silk from Black Widows: A Recipe to Build Synthetic Silk Fibers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Camille Larracas

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The outstanding material properties of spider dragline silk fibers have been attributed to two spidroins, major ampullate spidroins 1 and 2 (MaSp1 and MaSp2. Although dragline silk fibers have been treated with different chemical solvents to elucidate the relationship between protein structure and fiber mechanics, there has not been a comprehensive proteomic analysis of the major ampullate (MA gland, its spinning dope, and dragline silk using a wide range of chaotropic agents, inorganic salts, and fluorinated alcohols to elucidate their complete molecular constituents. In these studies, we perform in-solution tryptic digestions of solubilized MA glands, spinning dope and dragline silk fibers using five different solvents, followed by nano liquid chromatography coupled to tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS analysis with an Orbitrap Fusion™ Tribrid™. To improve protein identification, we employed three different tryptic peptide fragmentation modes, which included collision-induced dissociation (CID, electron transfer dissociation (ETD, and high energy collision dissociation (HCD to discover proteins involved in the silk assembly pathway and silk fiber. In addition to MaSp1 and MaSp2, we confirmed the presence of a third spidroin, aciniform spidroin 1 (AcSp1, widely recognized as the major constituent of wrapping silk, as a product of dragline silk. Our findings also reveal that MA glands, spinning dope, and dragline silk contain at least seven common proteins: three members of the Cysteine-Rich Protein Family (CRP1, CRP2 and CRP4, cysteine-rich secretory protein 3 (CRISP3, fasciclin and two uncharacterized proteins. In summary, this study provides a proteomic blueprint to construct synthetic silk fibers that most closely mimic natural fibers.

  9. Recent Advances in Research on Widow Spider Venoms and Toxins

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    Shuai Yan

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Widow spiders have received much attention due to the frequently reported human and animal injures caused by them. Elucidation of the molecular composition and action mechanism of the venoms and toxins has vast implications in the treatment of latrodectism and in the neurobiology and pharmaceutical research. In recent years, the studies of the widow spider venoms and the venom toxins, particularly the α-latrotoxin, have achieved many new advances; however, the mechanism of action of the venom toxins has not been completely clear. The widow spider is different from many other venomous animals in that it has toxic components not only in the venom glands but also in other parts of the adult spider body, newborn spiderlings, and even the eggs. More recently, the molecular basis for the toxicity outside the venom glands has been systematically investigated, with four proteinaceous toxic components being purified and preliminarily characterized, which has expanded our understanding of the widow spider toxins. This review presents a glance at the recent advances in the study on the venoms and toxins from the Latrodectus species.

  10. Vitamin B1 thiazole derivative reduces transmembrane current through ionic channels formed by toxins from black widow spider venom and sea anemone in planar phospholipid membranes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shatursky, Oleg Ya; Volkova, Tatyana M; Romanenko, Olexander V; Himmelreich, Nina H; Grishin, Eugene V

    2007-02-01

    The vitamin B1 (thiamine) structural analogue 3-decyloxycarbonylmethyl-4-methyl-5-(beta-hydroxyethyl) thiazole chloride (DMHT) (0.1 mM) reversibly reduced transmembrane currents in CaCl2 and KCl solutions via ionic channels produced by latrotoxins (alpha-latrotoxin (alpha-LT) and alpha-latroinsectotoxin (alpha-LIT)) from black widow spider venom and sea anemone toxin (RTX) in the bilayer lipid membranes (BLMs). Introduction of DMHT from the cis-side of BLM bathed in 10 mM CaCl2 inhibited transmembrane current by 31.6+/-3% and by 61.8+/-3% from the trans-side of BLM for alpha-LT channels. Application of DMHT in the solution of 10 mM CaCl2 to the cis-side of BLM decreased the current through the alpha-LIT and RTX channels by 52+/-4% and 50+/-5%, respectively. Addition of Cd2+ (1 mM) to the cis- or trans-side of the membrane after the DMHT-induced depression of Ca2+-current across the alpha-LT channels caused its further decrease by 85+/-5% that coincides favorably with the intensity of Cd2+ blocking in control experiments without DMHT. These data suggest that DMHT inhibiting is not specific for latrotoxin channels only and DMHT may exert its action on alpha-LT channels without considerable influence on the ionogenic groups of Ca2+-selective site inside the channel cavity. The binding kinetics of DMHT with the alpha-LT channel shows no cooperativity and allows to expect that the DMHT binding site of the toxin is formed by one ionogenic group as the slopes of inhibition rate determined in log-log coordinates are 1.25 on the trans-side and 0.68 on the cis-side. Similar pK of binding (5.4 on the trans-side and 5.7 on the cis-side) also suggest that DMHT may interact with the same high affinity site of alpha-LT channel on either side of the BLM. The comparative analysis of effective radii measured for alpha-LT, alpha-LIT and RTX channels on the cis-side (0.9 nm, 0.53 nm and 0.55 nm, correspondingly) and for alpha-LT channel on the trans-side (0.28+/-0.18 nm) with the

  11. Spider Bites (For Parents)

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... body rash fever and chills fatigue Of a black widow spider bite: rigid, painful muscles within 8 hours no ... child was bitten by a brown recluse or black widow spider Think Prevention! Make sure garages, attics, and woodpiles ...

  12. Development of Latrodectus Envenomation Severity Score (LESS; a Severity Index for Widow Spider Bite: Initial Step

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    Seyed Monzavi

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Background: In order to describe the patients and evaluate the effectiveness of treatments for widow spider envenomation, investigators require a reliable assessment tool. In this paper, the development of a clinical index for measuring the widow spider bite severity, Latrodectus Envenomation Severity Score (LESS, is described. Methods: According to the valid methods for index development, a Delphi group process was applied. A panel of 13 experienced medical toxicologists and physician experts in treatment of black widow spider bites was assembled in December 2013. The participants were asked to score clinical manifestations of Latrodectus envenomation based on their importance on the severity and patients’ prognosis. Hence, an initial draft of the severity index was developed and in the second phase of study, the draft was discussed in a focus group of experts to finally comment on each variable and vote about the final scores. Results: The proposed version of LESS comprises of 34 clinical items categorized in 8 organ systems. The index includes definition of each clinical variable to help users of the index how to ascertain or rule out the clinical finding. The maximum theoretical score according to LESS is 87. Acute renal failure, myocarditis, pulmonary edema and ileus received the highest scores in this index. Conclusion: The LESS is a new assessment tool that is designed to more objectively evaluate the severity and progression of envenomation in victims of widow spider bite. The prognostic-ability, reliability and sensitivity to change of the index should be investigated in future studies.   How to cite this article: Monzavi SM, Afshari R. Development of Latrodectus Envenomation Severity Score (LESS; a Severity Index for Widow Spider Bite: Initial Step. Asia Pac J Med Toxicol 2014;3:18-22.

  13. Spider Bites: First Aid

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... t had one in the last five years. Black widow spider You can usually identify a black widow spider by the hourglass marking on its belly. In ... in the South. Signs and symptoms of a black widow spider bite may include: At first, slight swelling and ...

  14. Red-back spider (Latrodectus hasselti) antivenom prevents the toxicity of widow spider venoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graudins, A; Padula, M; Broady, K; Nicholson, G M

    2001-02-01

    Widow spiders of the genus Latrodectus are found worldwide and produce similar clinical envenomation syndromes. In Australia, red-back spider antivenom (RBS-AV) is effective therapy for Latrodectus hasselti envenomation and it has been reported to reverse envenomation by other widow spiders. This study assessed the efficacy of RBS-AV in preventing in vitro and in vivo toxicity of widow spider venoms of North America and Europe. The binding of RBS-AV to alpha-latrotoxin and Latrodectus venoms (Latrodectus spp mactans, hesperus, lugubris, tredecimguttatus, hasselti) was assayed using Western blotting. Prevention of in vitro toxicity to alpha-latrotoxin and the same venoms was tested by pretreating an isolated chick biventer cervicis nerve-muscle preparation with RBS-AV. Prevention of in vivo toxicity was determined by a lethality study in male Balb/c mice (2.5 to 5x median lethal dose [LD50]) or alpha-latrotoxin (10x LD50) preincubated with antivenom or without RBS-AV (control). In Western blots, RBS-AV bound to alpha-latrotoxin and similar widow spider proteins in all venoms tested, indicating antigenic similarity with proteins found in RBS venom. Antivenom prevented the typical in vitro muscle contracture and loss of twitch tension seen with alpha-latrotoxin and the venoms tested. Control mice rapidly developed signs of envenomation, but mice treated with RBS-AV remained free of signs of envenomation. RBS-AV prevented both in vitro and in vivo toxicity from Latrodectus venoms and alpha-latrotoxin in mice. These data suggest that RBS-AV may be clinically effective in the treatment of envenomation resulting from the bite of other widow spiders.

  15. Quasistatic and continuous dynamic characterization of the mechanical properties of silk from the cobweb of the black widow spider Latrodectus hesperus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blackledge, Todd A; Swindeman, John E; Hayashi, Cheryl Y

    2005-05-01

    Spider silks are among the strongest and toughest known materials, but investigation of these remarkable properties has been confined largely to orb-weaving spiders. We investigated the mechanical performance of silk from the cobweb-weaving spider Latrodectus hesperus. Both silk from the scaffolding region of the web and sticky gumfooted capture lines had material properties similar to the major ampullate silk that orb weavers use as the framework for their orb webs. Major ampullate fibers obtained from anaesthetized Latrodectus spiders were similar, but exhibited increased stiffness and reduced extensibility. Novel continuous dynamic analysis of the silks revealed that the loss tangent (tandelta) increased rapidly during the first 2-3% of extension and reached a maximum near the yield point of fibers. The loss tangent then rapidly declined at an ever-decreasing rate until failure. We suggest that these data support molecular models for the mechanics of spider silk. We also demonstrate that the addition of sticky aggregate glue to the ends of the gumfooted lines modulates their mechanical performance--reducing stiffness and increasing extensibility. The storage modulus of viscid regions of the gumfooted lines was much lower than dry regions. This may be explained by disruption of hydrogen bonding within the amorphous regions of the fibers due to hydration from the glue.

  16. Establishment of the Brown Widow Spider (Araneae: Theridiidae) and Infestation of its Egg Sacs by a Parasitoid, Philolema latrodecti (Hymenoptera: Eurytomidae), in French Polynesia and the Cook Islands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marie, Jérôme; Vetter, Richard S

    2015-11-01

    This paper presents two newly established species for French Polynesia: the invasive brown widow spider, Latrodectus geometricus C. L. Koch, and its potential biocontrol agent, the parasitoid wasp, Philolema latrodecti (Fullaway). The brown widow spider was recorded from the island of Moorea in 2006 and, since that discovery, the occurrence of this species has expanded to two of the five archipelagos of French Polynesia including the main island of Tahiti and four of the Cook Islands. Although the tropical climate contributes to the establishment of L. geometricus, a biotic factor, P. latrodecti, may restrain population from demographic explosion. This eurytomid wasp is present in French Polynesia and is a parasitoid that has been used in biological control of the southern black widow Latrodectus mactans (F.) in Hawaii. This wasp could become a significant limiting factor for L. geometricus distribution on these islands, as it was found in 31% of the Tahitian brown widow spider egg sacs that were dissected. However, thus far, the wasp was only found on Tahiti in association with the brown widow spider. Although the brown widow is generally considered to be less toxic than its black widow relatives, it remains of medical concern in French Polynesia because reactions to its bites can, at times, be severe. The spider remains of public concern because it is a novel species; it has the word widow in its name and dark morphs are mistaken as black widows. © The Authors 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  17. Examination of adverse events following black widow antivenom use in California.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nordt, Sean Patrick; Clark, Richard F; Lee, Angie; Berk, Kacie; Lee Cantrell, F

    2012-01-01

    Following widow spider (Latrodectus sp.) envenomation, local pain, erythema, abdominal pain, rigidity, hypertension, and diaphoresis can be seen. While an effective specific antivenom (AV) is available, its use is limited due to concern of possible severe allergic reaction. We performed the current study to determine rate of adverse effects and the efficacy of AV in patients treated for widow spider envenomation. Observational case series of the California Poison Control System electronic database from January 1999 to December 2009. All cases of widow spider envenomation treated with AV were included. Age, gender, signs, and symptoms, adjunctive therapy, number of vials of AV given, and adverse reaction to AV were recorded. Descriptive statistical methods were used. Ninety-six patients received AV, mean age 26 years (0.12-74 years), 76% male. Following widow spider envenomation generalized pain was reported in 91%, erythema at site in 57%, hypertension (≥ 140/90 mmHg) in 43%, muscle rigidity/cramping in 43%, abdominal pain in 41%, tachycardia (≥ 100 bpm) in 23% and diaphoresis in 21%. No patient required more than one vial of AV. One patient developed urticaria to AV halfway through infusion which was immediately discontinued. Another patient developed generalized flushing following completion of infusion but had no other effects. Two other patients reported myalgia and paresthesia. There were no deaths in any patients receiving AV. There was no shortness of breath or respiratory distress, no hypotension or chest pain following AV administration. All patients reported pain relief with AV and did not require additional AV doses. Our results suggest that Black Widow Spider Antivenin® (Merck) administration is relatively safe with mild to moderate adverse effects seen in only a small percentage of patients. There were no deaths, or severe allergic reactions identified. The retrospective use of poison control system data is a limitation of our study. Further

  18. Cytotoxic and apoptotic activities of black widow spiderling extract against HeLa cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, Xiaozhen; Dai, Zhipan; Lei, Qian; Liang, Long; Yan, Shuai; Wang, Xianchun

    2017-06-01

    Black widow spiders contain toxic components not only in the venom glands but also in other parts of the spider body, including the legs and abdomen. Additionally, both the eggs and newborn spiderlings of the black widow spider contain venom. It is important to investigate their potential effects on cancer cells. In the present study, the effects of newborn black widow spiderling extract on human HeLa cells were evaluated in vitro . When applied at different concentrations, the total extract decreased HeLa cell viability in a dose-dependent manner, with an IC 50 value of 158 µg/ml. Flow cytometry indicated that treatment of HeLa cells with the total extract of the spiderlings induced apoptosis in HeLa cells in a dose-dependent manner and led to cell cycle arrest in the S-phase. Additionally, application of the total extract at different concentrations increased apoptosis-related caspase 3 activity in a dose-dependent manner. HeLa cells treated with the total extract appeared to be morphologically changed, exhibiting membrane blebbing, nuclear fragmentation and condensation of chromatin. Further separation and activity screening demonstrated that the cytotoxic and apoptotic activities of the total extract were attributable mainly to its high molecular mass proteins, one of which was purified and characterized to determine its anti-tumor activities on HeLa cells. The results of the present study therefore have expanded understanding regarding the effect of spider toxins on cancer cells and suggested that components of black widow spiderlings may be developed as a promising novel agent to treat cancer.

  19. Black widow pulsars: the price of promiscuity

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, A. R.; Davies, M. B.; Beer, M. E.

    2003-10-01

    The incidence of evaporating `black widow' pulsars (BWPs) among all millisecond pulsars is far higher in globular clusters than in the field. This implies a special formation mechanism for them in clusters. Cluster millisecond pulsars in wide binaries with white dwarf companions exchange them for turnoff-mass stars. These new companions eventually overflow their Roche lobes because of encounters and tides. The millisecond pulsars eject the overflowing gas from the binary, giving mass loss on the binary evolution time-scale. The systems are only observable as BWPs at epochs where this evolution is slow, making the mass loss transparent and the lifetime long. This explains why observed BWPs have low-mass companions. We suggest that at least some field BWPs were ejected from globular clusters or entered the field population when the cluster itself was disrupted.

  20. The ability of spiderlings of the widow spider Latrodectus hesperus (Araneae: Theridiidae) to pass through different size mesh screen: implications for exclusion from air intake ducts and greenhouses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vetter, Richard S; Flanders, Christopher P; Rust, Michael K

    2009-06-01

    Experiments tested the ability of newly emerged spiderlings of a black widow spider, Latrodectus hesperus Chamberlin & Ivie (Araneae: Theridiidae), to crawl through brass screen of various mesh size. The purpose was to determine whether immatures of these medically important spiders could be excluded from buildings. In horizontal orientation, black widow spiderlings were able to easily pass through mesh with openings of 0.83 mm and were prevented from passing in four of five tests with mesh of 0.59-mm openings. Spiderlings also readily pass through 0.83-mm mesh in vertical orientation. Our laboratory studies indicate that the mesh size sufficient for exclusion is too small for practical use in most cases, although there are some specialized situations where such small mesh might be useful. The results are discussed in regard to actual conditions found in typical commercial building situations.

  1. The first report of the widow spider Latrodectus elegant (Araneae: Theridiidae from India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Kananbala

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available The widow spider genus Latrodectus Walckenaer, 1805, in India is represented by three species L. erythromelas Schmidt & Klaas, 1991, L. geometricus C.L. Koch, 1841 and L. hasselti Thorell, 1870. In this paper, we report the occurrence of Lactrodectus elegans Thorell, 1898 for the first time from India. We provide additional information on taxonomy and natural history based on the specimens collected from Manipur.

  2. Chromosome mapping of dragline silk genes in the genomes of widow spiders (Araneae, Theridiidae.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yonghui Zhao

    Full Text Available With its incredible strength and toughness, spider dragline silk is widely lauded for its impressive material properties. Dragline silk is composed of two structural proteins, MaSp1 and MaSp2, which are encoded by members of the spidroin gene family. While previous studies have characterized the genes that encode the constituent proteins of spider silks, nothing is known about the physical location of these genes. We determined karyotypes and sex chromosome organization for the widow spiders, Latrodectus hesperus and L. geometricus (Araneae, Theridiidae. We then used fluorescence in situ hybridization to map the genomic locations of the genes for the silk proteins that compose the remarkable spider dragline. These genes included three loci for the MaSp1 protein and the single locus for the MaSp2 protein. In addition, we mapped a MaSp1 pseudogene. All the MaSp1 gene copies and pseudogene localized to a single chromosomal region while MaSp2 was located on a different chromosome of L. hesperus. Using probes derived from L. hesperus, we comparatively mapped all three MaSp1 loci to a single region of a L. geometricus chromosome. As with L. hesperus, MaSp2 was found on a separate L. geometricus chromosome, thus again unlinked to the MaSp1 loci. These results indicate orthology of the corresponding chromosomal regions in the two widow genomes. Moreover, the occurrence of multiple MaSp1 loci in a conserved gene cluster across species suggests that MaSp1 proliferated by tandem duplication in a common ancestor of L. geometricus and L. hesperus. Unequal crossover events during recombination could have given rise to the gene copies and could also maintain sequence similarity among gene copies over time. Further comparative mapping with taxa of increasing divergence from Latrodectus will pinpoint when the MaSp1 duplication events occurred and the phylogenetic distribution of silk gene linkage patterns.

  3. Systematics, Bioecology, and Medical Importance of Widow Spiders (Lathrodectus spp. in Khorasan Province, Iran

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J Rafijenad

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available Following the hospitalization of 195 individuals due to the spider bite in 1995 and three cases of recorded death in the year of 1993 which were referred to Emam Reza Hospital in Mashad, the present study was undertaken on bionomics and medical importance of Lathrodectus spp in Khorasan Province, during 1995-2005. A total cases of 195 bites were studied composing of 70.8 % males and 29.2% females. The most prevalence cases were observed in mid age (20-55 years old and par¬ticularly among farmers (36.4%. A total number of 216 adult widow spiders and 258 egg sacs were collected from their habitats in different localities of 15 counties in the province. The following species have been recognized: Lathrodectus tredecimgottatus (62%, L. dahli (32%, L. geometricus (5% and L. pallidus (1%. Here is the first report on the occurrence of males of L. pallidus as well as both sexes of L. trdecimgottatus and L. geometricus in the country. The sex ratio among collected specimens was 88% and 12% female and male, respectively. Summer provides the most suitable and favorable climatic condition for the activities of these spiders. However 65% of spiders were collected in this season. Among different cit¬ies, Mashad had (60% the most reported cases in the study area. Foot was more injured than other parts. 96.5% of pa¬tients exhib¬ited localized pain from which only 2% had no pain in the bitten part and 87% had a generalized pain in whole body.

  4. Systematics, Bioecology, and Medical Importance of Widow Spiders (Lathrodectus spp. in Khorasan Province, Iran

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J Rafijenad

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available Following the hospitalization of 195 individuals due to the spider bite in 1995 and three cases of recorded death in the year of 1993 which were referred to Emam Reza Hospital in Mashad, the present study was undertaken on bionomics and medical importance of Lathrodectus spp in Khorasan Province, during 1995-2005. A total cases of 195 bites were studied composing of 70.8 % males and 29.2% females. The most prevalence cases were observed in mid age (20-55 years old and par¬ticularly among farmers (36.4%. A total number of 216 adult widow spiders and 258 egg sacs were collected from their habitats in different localities of 15 counties in the province. The following species have been recognized: Lathrodectus tredecimgottatus (62%, L. dahli (32%, L. geometricus (5% and L. pallidus (1%. Here is the first report on the occurrence of males of L. pallidus as well as both sexes of L. trdecimgottatus and L. geometricus in the country. The sex ratio among collected specimens was 88% and 12% female and male, respectively. Summer provides the most suitable and favorable climatic condition for the activities of these spiders. However 65% of spiders were collected in this season. Among different cit¬ies, Mashad had (60% the most reported cases in the study area. Foot was more injured than other parts. 96.5% of pa¬tients exhib¬ited localized pain from which only 2% had no pain in the bitten part and 87% had a generalized pain in whole body.

  5. Physiological and biochemical analysis to reveal the molecular basis for black widow spiderling toxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, Xiaozhen; Zhang, Yiya; Liu, Jinyan; Yu, Hai; Chen, Jia; Lei, Qian; Wang, Xianchun; Liang, Songping

    2014-05-01

    The early research found that the spiderlings of black widow spider (Latrodectus tredecimguttatus) exhibited obvious toxicity to animals. The present work performed a systematical analysis of the aqueous extract of newborn black widow spiderlings. The extract was shown to contain 69.42% of proteins varying in molecular weights and isoelectric points. Abdominal injection of the extract into mice and cockroaches caused obvious poisoning symptoms as well as death, with LD50 being 5.30 mg/kg in mice and 16.74 µg/g in Periplaneta americana. Electrophysiological experiments indicated that the extract at a concentration of 10 µg/mL could completely block the neuromuscular transmission in isolated mouse nerve-hemidiaphragm preparations within 21 ± 1.5 min, and 100 µg/mL extract could inhibit a certain percentage of voltage-activated Na⁺, K⁺, and Ca²⁺ channel currents in rat dorsal root ganglion neurons. These results demonstrate that the spiderlings are rich in neurotoxic components, which play important roles in the spiderling toxicity. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  6. Characterizing the secondary protein structure of black widow dragline silk using solid-state NMR and X-ray diffraction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jenkins, Janelle E; Sampath, Sujatha; Butler, Emily; Kim, Jihyun; Henning, Robert W; Holland, Gregory P; Yarger, Jeffery L

    2013-10-14

    This study provides a detailed secondary structural characterization of major ampullate dragline silk from Latrodectus hesperus (black widow) spiders. X-ray diffraction results show that the structure of black widow major ampullate silk fibers is comprised of stacked β-sheet nanocrystallites oriented parallel to the fiber axis and an amorphous region with oriented (anisotropic) and isotropic components. The combination of two-dimensional (2D) (13)C-(13)C through-space and through-bond solid-state NMR experiments provide chemical shifts that are used to determine detailed information about the amino acid motif secondary structure in black widow spider dragline silk. Individual amino acids are incorporated into different repetitive motifs that make up the majority of this protein-based biopolymer. From the solid-state NMR measurements, we assign distinct secondary conformations to each repetitive amino acid motif and, hence, to the amino acids that make up the motifs. Specifically, alanine is incorporated in β-sheet (poly(Alan) and poly(Gly-Ala)), 3(1)-helix (poly(Gly-Gly-Xaa), and α-helix (poly(Gln-Gln-Ala-Tyr)) components. Glycine is determined to be in β-sheet (poly(Gly-Ala)) and 3(1)-helical (poly(Gly-Gly-X(aa))) regions, while serine is present in β-sheet (poly(Gly-Ala-Ser)), 3(1)-helix (poly(Gly-Gly-Ser)), and β-turn (poly(Gly-Pro-Ser)) structures. These various motif-specific secondary structural elements are quantitatively correlated to the primary amino acid sequence of major ampullate spidroin 1 and 2 (MaSp1 and MaSp2) and are shown to form a self-consistent model for black widow dragline silk.

  7. Complex gene expression in the dragline silk producing glands of the Western black widow (Latrodectus hesperus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lane, Amanda Kelly; Hayashi, Cheryl Y; Whitworth, Gregg B; Ayoub, Nadia A

    2013-12-02

    Orb-web and cob-web weaving spiders spin dragline silk fibers that are among the strongest materials known. Draglines are primarily composed of MaSp1 and MaSp2, two spidroins (spider fibrous proteins) expressed in the major ampullate (MA) silk glands. Prior genetic studies of dragline silk have focused mostly on determining the sequence of these spidroins, leaving other genetic aspects of silk synthesis largely uncharacterized. Here, we used deep sequencing to profile gene expression patterns in the Western black widow, Latrodectus hesperus. We sequenced millions of 3'-anchored "tags" of cDNAs derived either from MA glands or control tissue (cephalothorax) mRNAs, then associated the tags with genes by compiling a reference database from our newly constructed normalized L. hesperus cDNA library and published L. hesperus sequences. We were able to determine transcript abundance and alternative polyadenylation of each of three loci encoding MaSp1. The ratio of MaSp1:MaSp2 transcripts varied between individuals, but on average was similar to the estimated ratio of MaSp1:MaSp2 in dragline fibers. We also identified transcription of TuSp1 in MA glands, another spidroin family member that encodes the primary component of egg-sac silk, synthesized in tubuliform glands. In addition to the spidroin paralogs, we identified 30 genes that are more abundantly represented in MA glands than cephalothoraxes and represent new candidates for involvement in spider silk synthesis. Modulating expression rates of MaSp1 variants as well as MaSp2 and TuSp1 could lead to differences in mechanical properties of dragline fibers. Many of the newly identified candidate genes likely encode secreted proteins, suggesting they could be incorporated into dragline fibers or assist in protein processing and fiber assembly. Our results demonstrate previously unrecognized transcript complexity in spider silk glands.

  8. Molecular investigation on Iranian widow spider Latrodectus tredecimguttatus based on DNA barcode analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maryam Mollaiizadeh

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Objective: To identify the caught samples of Latrodectus tredecimguttatus (L. tredecimguttatus to the species level and to compare the obtained sequences with those of them that have been submitted in GenBank in Bojnurd district, located in north-east part of Iran. Methods: Samples were collected from different places of Bojnurd district using direct search method and were transferred to insectary. After then, by using valid morphological keys, samples were identified to the species level. Moreover, the DNA related to some samples was extracted by the use of different methods such as Collins, phenol-chloroform, salting-out and G-Spin kit. Finally, COI gene was studied by PCR amplification. Results: Totally, two egg sacs were collected as well as two mature female spiders. According to the lab results, by the use of molecular methods, 50 spiderlings belonging to an egg sac was evaluated. The results of PCR assay revealed that the best way for DNA extraction was salting- out method. Finally, the sequence of the partial mtDNA-COI of Latrodectus tredecimguttatus (L. tredecimguttatus sample was submitted to GenBank. The results showed an identity of 99% of the studied samples with those of GenBank. Conclusions: Widow spiders are widely spread in different parts of the world and their bites cause death. It is important to study these samples by the use of molecular methods and then to produce them in a mass volume in order to fight and extract their venom for provision of anti-serum. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first molecular survey on spiders in Iran. Finally, the assessment of the human protection against the specific Iranian L. tredecimguttatus anti-venom is suggested.

  9. Dramatic expansion of the black widow toxin arsenal uncovered by multi-tissue transcriptomics and venom proteomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haney, Robert A; Ayoub, Nadia A; Clarke, Thomas H; Hayashi, Cheryl Y; Garb, Jessica E

    2014-06-11

    Animal venoms attract enormous interest given their potential for pharmacological discovery and understanding the evolution of natural chemistries. Next-generation transcriptomics and proteomics provide unparalleled, but underexploited, capabilities for venom characterization. We combined multi-tissue RNA-Seq with mass spectrometry and bioinformatic analyses to determine venom gland specific transcripts and venom proteins from the Western black widow spider (Latrodectus hesperus) and investigated their evolution. We estimated expression of 97,217 L. hesperus transcripts in venom glands relative to silk and cephalothorax tissues. We identified 695 venom gland specific transcripts (VSTs), many of which BLAST and GO term analyses indicate may function as toxins or their delivery agents. ~38% of VSTs had BLAST hits, including latrotoxins, inhibitor cystine knot toxins, CRISPs, hyaluronidases, chitinase, and proteases, and 59% of VSTs had predicted protein domains. Latrotoxins are venom toxins that cause massive neurotransmitter release from vertebrate or invertebrate neurons. We discovered ≥ 20 divergent latrotoxin paralogs expressed in L. hesperus venom glands, significantly increasing this biomedically important family. Mass spectrometry of L. hesperus venom identified 49 proteins from VSTs, 24 of which BLAST to toxins. Phylogenetic analyses showed venom gland specific gene family expansions and shifts in tissue expression. Quantitative expression analyses comparing multiple tissues are necessary to identify venom gland specific transcripts. We present a black widow venom specific exome that uncovers a trove of diverse toxins and associated proteins, suggesting a dynamic evolutionary history. This justifies a reevaluation of the functional activities of black widow venom in light of its emerging complexity.

  10. Rapid Characterization of Spider Silk Genes via Exon Capture

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-03-28

    argentata (silver garden spider ), Latrodectus hesperus (Western black widow ), and Nephila clavipes (golden silk orb- weaver). A. diadematus and N...in light of sequence divergence, we also studied Parasteatoda tepidariorum (common house spider ) and Steatoda grossa (false black widow ). P...could determine the minimum number of spidroin gene copies in a black widow genome. In less well-characterized species, such as A. diadematus, our data

  11. Black and brown widow spider bites in South Africa

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    specimens have a prominent median red stripe or trans- verse red stripes on the middle to posterior third of the ... by a consistent orange to red hourglass mark on the ven- tral surface of the abdomen (Fig. 5). The joints of .... They give rise to local tissue destruction and ulcer for- mation.",II,12,27 The extent of the local tissue ...

  12. A Cocoon Found Inside the Black Widow's Web

    Science.gov (United States)

    2003-02-01

    NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory image of the mysterious "Black Widow" pulsar reveals the first direct evidence of an elongated cocoon of high-energy particles. This discovery shows that this billion-year-old rejuvenated pulsar is an extremely efficient generator of a high-speed flow of matter and antimatter particles. Known officially as pulsar B1957+20, the Black Widow received its nickname because it is emitting intense high-energy radiation that is destroying its companion through evaporation. B1957+20, which completes one rotation every 1.6-thousandths of a second, belongs to a class of extremely rapidly rotating neutron stars called millisecond pulsars. The motion of B1957+20 through the galaxy -- at a high speed of almost a million kilometers per hour -- creates a bow shock wave visible to optical telescopes. The Chandra observation shows what cannot be seen in visible light: a second shock wave. This secondary shock wave is created from pressure that sweeps the wind back from the pulsar to form the cocoon of high-energy particles, visible for the first time in the Chandra data. "This is the first detection of a double-shock structure around a pulsar," said Benjamin Stappers, of the Dutch Organization for Research in Astronomy (ASTRON), lead author on a paper describing the research that will appear in the Feb. 28, 2003, issue of Science magazine. "It should enable astronomers to test theories of the dynamics of pulsar winds and their interaction with their environment." B1957+20 X-ray-only image of B1957+20 Scientists believe millisecond pulsars are very old neutron stars that have been spun up by accreting material from their companions. The steady push of the infalling matter on the neutron star spins it up in much the same way as pushing on a merry-go-round makes it rotate faster. The result is an object about 1.5 times as massive as the Sun and ten miles in diameter that rotates hundreds of times per second. The advanced age, very rapid rotation rate

  13. A meal or a male: the 'whispers' of black widow males do not trigger a predatory response in females.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vibert, Samantha; Scott, Catherine; Gries, Gerhard

    2014-01-17

    Female spiders are fine-tuned to detect and quickly respond to prey vibrations, presenting a challenge to courting males who must attract a female's attention but not be mistaken for prey. This is likely particularly important at the onset of courtship when a male enters a female's web. In web-dwelling spiders, little is known about how males solve this conundrum, or about their courtship signals. Here we used laser Doppler vibrometry to study the vibrations produced by males and prey (house flies and crickets) on tangle webs of the western black widow Latrodectus hesperus and on sheet webs of the hobo spider Tegenaria agrestis. We recorded the vibrations at the location typically occupied by a hunting female spider. We compared the vibrations produced by males and prey in terms of their waveform, dominant frequency, frequency bandwidth, amplitude and duration. We also played back recorded male and prey vibrations through the webs of female L. hesperus to determine the vibratory parameters that trigger a predatory response in females. We found overlap in waveform between male and prey vibrations in both L. hesperus and T. agrestis. In both species, male vibrations were continuous, of long duration (on average 6.35 s for T. agrestis and 9.31 s for L. hesperus), and lacked complex temporal patterning such as repeated motifs or syllables. Prey vibrations were shorter (1.38 - 2.59 s), sporadic and often percussive. Based on the parameters measured, courtship signals of male L. hesperus differed more markedly from prey cues than did those of T. agrestis. Courtship vibrations of L. hesperus males differed from prey vibrations in terms of dominant frequency, amplitude and duration. Vibrations of T. agrestis males differed from prey in terms of duration only. During a playback experiment, L. hesperus females did not respond aggressively to low-amplitude vibrations irrespective of whether the playback recording was from a prey or a male. Unlike courtship signals of other

  14. Spider Gland Fluids: From Protein-Rich Isotropic Liquid to Insoluble Super Fiber

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-17

    depend on the ratio of the two proteins. Finally, we have succeeded in imaging the major ampullate gland with MRI on a live black widow spider and...MRI images of the silk producing glands and ducts within the abdomen of a live Black Widow spider . The (a) top down view and (b) profile view of the...monitored by exposing the major Fig. 10 The 1H liquid-state NMR spectrum of major ampullate glands excised from Black widow spiders . The spectrum

  15. Effects of Gene Duplication, Positive Selection, and Shifts in Gene Expression on the Evolution of the Venom Gland Transcriptome in Widow Spiders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haney, Robert A; Clarke, Thomas H; Gadgil, Rujuta; Fitzpatrick, Ryan; Hayashi, Cheryl Y; Ayoub, Nadia A; Garb, Jessica E

    2016-01-05

    Gene duplication and positive selection can be important determinants of the evolution of venom, a protein-rich secretion used in prey capture and defense. In a typical model of venom evolution, gene duplicates switch to venom gland expression and change function under the action of positive selection, which together with further duplication produces large gene families encoding diverse toxins. Although these processes have been demonstrated for individual toxin families, high-throughput multitissue sequencing of closely related venomous species can provide insights into evolutionary dynamics at the scale of the entire venom gland transcriptome. By assembling and analyzing multitissue transcriptomes from the Western black widow spider and two closely related species with distinct venom toxicity phenotypes, we do not find that gene duplication and duplicate retention is greater in gene families with venom gland biased expression in comparison with broadly expressed families. Positive selection has acted on some venom toxin families, but does not appear to be in excess for families with venom gland biased expression. Moreover, we find 309 distinct gene families that have single transcripts with venom gland biased expression, suggesting that the switching of genes to venom gland expression in numerous unrelated gene families has been a dominant mode of evolution. We also find ample variation in protein sequences of venom gland-specific transcripts, lineage-specific family sizes, and ortholog expression among species. This variation might contribute to the variable venom toxicity of these species. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  16. A case: Acute myocardial infarction in a child due to spider bite

    OpenAIRE

    Laho, Edmond; Puca, Edmond

    2015-01-01

    This report presents a case of a ten-years-old girl, who suffered myocardial ischemia following by "black widow" spider bite. A few minutes after the bite, her parents saw a small, black and shiny lesion in insect bite. The clinical signs began about 3-4 hours after the bite. The venom of the Latrodectus mactans "black widow" is toxic, resulting about 5-6 % fatality rate. The case of a black widow spider bite resulting in myocardial ischemia is very rare and has not been d...

  17. Reversible myocarditis after spider bite.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kara, Hasan; Ak, Ahmet; Bayir, Aysegul; Avci, Ahmet

    2013-04-08

    Black widow spiders (Latrodectus tredecimguttatus) are poisonous spiders endemic in Turkey. Latrodectus bites may cause myocarditis with increased cardiac enzymes. We treated two men (aged 20 and 33 years) who had myocarditis after black spider bites with leucocytosis and elevated levels of troponin I, creatine kinase and creatine kinase-MB fraction. Both patients had normal results on an ECG, and one patient had abnormal echocardiography with minimal left ventricular wall movement disorder. Both patients were hospitalised in the intensive care unit and treated with intravenous fluids, analgesics, spasmolytic drugs, tetanus prophylaxis and cardiac monitoring. The levels of troponin I, creatine kinase and creatine kinase-MB fraction improved, and the patients were discharged home on the third and fifth hospital day without complications. Myocarditis after a Latrodectus bite is rare, but may be associated with serious complications. Therefore, in regions endemic with Latrodectus spiders, prudent treatment of spider bites may include cardiac evaluation and monitoring.

  18. A meal or a male: the ‘whispers’ of black widow males do not trigger a predatory response in females

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Female spiders are fine-tuned to detect and quickly respond to prey vibrations, presenting a challenge to courting males who must attract a female’s attention but not be mistaken for prey. This is likely particularly important at the onset of courtship when a male enters a female’s web. In web-dwelling spiders, little is known about how males solve this conundrum, or about their courtship signals. Here we used laser Doppler vibrometry to study the vibrations produced by males and prey (house flies and crickets) on tangle webs of the western black widow Latrodectus hesperus and on sheet webs of the hobo spider Tegenaria agrestis. We recorded the vibrations at the location typically occupied by a hunting female spider. We compared the vibrations produced by males and prey in terms of their waveform, dominant frequency, frequency bandwidth, amplitude and duration. We also played back recorded male and prey vibrations through the webs of female L. hesperus to determine the vibratory parameters that trigger a predatory response in females. Results We found overlap in waveform between male and prey vibrations in both L. hesperus and T. agrestis. In both species, male vibrations were continuous, of long duration (on average 6.35 s for T. agrestis and 9.31 s for L. hesperus), and lacked complex temporal patterning such as repeated motifs or syllables. Prey vibrations were shorter (1.38 - 2.59 s), sporadic and often percussive. Based on the parameters measured, courtship signals of male L. hesperus differed more markedly from prey cues than did those of T. agrestis. Courtship vibrations of L. hesperus males differed from prey vibrations in terms of dominant frequency, amplitude and duration. Vibrations of T. agrestis males differed from prey in terms of duration only. During a playback experiment, L. hesperus females did not respond aggressively to low-amplitude vibrations irrespective of whether the playback recording was from a prey or a male

  19. Discovery of an Unidentified Fermi Object as a Black Widow-Like Millisecond Pulsar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kong, A. K. H.; Huang, R. H. H.; Cheng, K. S.; Takata, J.; Yatsu, Y.; Cheung, C. C.; Donato, D.; Lin, L. C. C.; Kataoka, J.; Takahashi, Y.; hide

    2012-01-01

    The Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope has revolutionized our knowledge of the gamma-ray pulsar population, leading to the discovery of almost 100 gamma-ray pulsars and dozens of gamma-ray millisecond pulsars (MSPs). Although the outer-gap model predicts different sites of emission for the radio and gamma-ray pulsars, until now all of the known gamma-ray MSPs have been visible in the radio. Here we report the discovery of a radio-quiet" gamma-ray emitting MSP candidate by using Fermi, Chandra, Swift, and optical observations. The X-ray and gamma-ray properties of the source are consistent with known gamma-ray pulsars. We also found a 4.63-hr orbital period in optical and X-ray data. We suggest that the source is a black widow-like MSP with a approx. 0.1 Stellar Mass late-type companion star. Based on the profile of the optical and X-ray light-curves, the companion star is believed to be heated by the pulsar while the X-ray emissions originate from pulsar magnetosphere and/or from intra-binary shock. No radio detection of the source has been reported yet and although no gamma-ray/radio pulsation has been found, we estimated that the spin period of the MSP is approx. 3-5 ms based on the inferred gamma-ray luminosity.

  20. N-3-Methylbutanoyl-O-methylpropanoyl-L-serine Methyl Ester - Pheromone Component of Western Black Widow Females.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott, Catherine; McCann, Sean; Gries, Regine; Khaskin, Grigori; Gries, Gerhard

    2015-05-01

    Chemical communication is common in spiders but few pheromones have been identified. Female widow spiders in the genus Latrodectus spin webs that disseminate an attractive sex pheromone, and a contact pheromone on the silk elicits courtship behavior by males. The methyl ester of N-3-methylbutanoyl-O-(S)-2-methylbutanoyl-L-serine is a contact pheromone of the Australian redback spider Latrodectus hasselti. We hypothesized that the contact pheromone of congeneric L. hesperus resembles that of L. hasselti. The silk of virgin L. hesperus females was extracted with methanol, and analyses by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC/MS) provided evidence for the presence of N-3-methylbutanoyl-O-methylpropanoyl-L-serine methyl ester (MB-MP-S), a lower homologue of the L. hasselti contact pheromone. Behavioral responses of L. hesperus males to test stimuli were assayed on T-shaped rods with the end sections of the horizontal arm enveloped in filter paper. Males spent 40 % longer in contact with paper bearing female silk than with blank paper, and 39 % longer in contact with paper treated with silk extract than with solvent controls. Contact with silk and silk extract induced courtship behavior by 96 % and 80 % of males, respectively, indicating that there was a methanol-soluble courtship-eliciting contact pheromone on the silk. Males responded less strongly to synthetic MB-MP-S than to silk or silk extract. Paper impregnated with synthetic MB-MP-S (10 or 100 μg) induced courtship behavior in 3-16 % of males, and prompted males to stay 10-16 % longer than on control paper. Our data support the conclusion that MB-MP-S is part of a multi-component contact pheromone of L. hesperus.

  1. Spider bite in southern Africa: diagnosis and management

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    older specimens the red stripes and spots may have disappeared completely. The legs are evenly black. .... Africa. (Map: Ansie Dippenaar.) Fig. 6. Brown widow spider depicting consistent orange to red hourglass .... Both cholinesterase inhibitors and α-latrotoxin give rise to an increase in acetylcholine concentration in the ...

  2. Spider Web DNA: A New Spin on Noninvasive Genetics of Predator and Prey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charles C Y Xu

    Full Text Available Noninvasive genetic sampling enables biomonitoring without the need to directly observe or disturb target organisms. This paper describes a novel and promising source of noninvasive spider and insect DNA from spider webs. Using black widow spiders (Latrodectus spp. fed with house crickets (Acheta domesticus, we successfully extracted, amplified, and sequenced mitochondrial DNA from spider web samples that identified both spider and prey to species. Detectability of spider DNA did not differ between assays with amplicon sizes from 135 to 497 base pairs. Spider and prey DNA remained detectable at least 88 days after living organisms were no longer present on the web. Spider web DNA as a proof-of-concept may open doors to other practical applications in conservation research, pest management, biogeography studies, and biodiversity assessments.

  3. Spider Web DNA: A New Spin on Noninvasive Genetics of Predator and Prey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Charles C Y; Yen, Ivy J; Bowman, Dean; Turner, Cameron R

    2015-01-01

    Noninvasive genetic sampling enables biomonitoring without the need to directly observe or disturb target organisms. This paper describes a novel and promising source of noninvasive spider and insect DNA from spider webs. Using black widow spiders (Latrodectus spp.) fed with house crickets (Acheta domesticus), we successfully extracted, amplified, and sequenced mitochondrial DNA from spider web samples that identified both spider and prey to species. Detectability of spider DNA did not differ between assays with amplicon sizes from 135 to 497 base pairs. Spider and prey DNA remained detectable at least 88 days after living organisms were no longer present on the web. Spider web DNA as a proof-of-concept may open doors to other practical applications in conservation research, pest management, biogeography studies, and biodiversity assessments.

  4. Spider Web DNA: A New Spin on Noninvasive Genetics of Predator and Prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Charles C. Y.; Yen, Ivy J.; Bowman, Dean; Turner, Cameron R.

    2015-01-01

    Noninvasive genetic sampling enables biomonitoring without the need to directly observe or disturb target organisms. This paper describes a novel and promising source of noninvasive spider and insect DNA from spider webs. Using black widow spiders (Latrodectus spp.) fed with house crickets (Acheta domesticus), we successfully extracted, amplified, and sequenced mitochondrial DNA from spider web samples that identified both spider and prey to species. Detectability of spider DNA did not differ between assays with amplicon sizes from 135 to 497 base pairs. Spider and prey DNA remained detectable at least 88 days after living organisms were no longer present on the web. Spider web DNA as a proof-of-concept may open doors to other practical applications in conservation research, pest management, biogeography studies, and biodiversity assessments. PMID:26606730

  5. Who is afraid of a black Spider(-Man)?

    OpenAIRE

    Ora C. McWilliams

    2013-01-01

    An Internet post asking about Spider-Man's race in a film turned into an Internet campaign about an actor that led fans to interact with each other as well as with the actor, which in turn led to the attention of media producers, which resulted in a change in Spider-Man's race in a print comic book.

  6. Who is afraid of a black Spider(-Man?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ora C. McWilliams

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available An Internet post asking about Spider-Man's race in a film turned into an Internet campaign about an actor that led fans to interact with each other as well as with the actor, which in turn led to the attention of media producers, which resulted in a change in Spider-Man's race in a print comic book.

  7. Dances with black widow spiders: dysregulation of glutamate signalling enters centre stage in ADHD.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lesch, K P; Merker, S; Reif, A; Novak, M

    2013-06-01

    Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a common neurodevelopmental disorder with impairments across the lifespan. The persistence of ADHD is associated with considerable liability to neuropsychiatric co-morbidity such as depression, anxiety and substance use disorder. The substantial heritability of ADHD is well documented and recent genome-wide analyses for risk genes revealed synaptic adhesion molecules (e.g. latrophilin-3, LPHN3; fibronectin leucine-rich repeat transmembrane protein-3, FLRT3), glutamate receptors (e.g. metabotropic glutamate receptor-5, GRM5) and mediators of intracellular signalling pathways (e.g. nitric oxide synthase-1, NOS1). These genes encode principal components of the molecular machinery that connects pre- and postsynaptic neurons, facilitates glutamatergic transmission, controls synaptic plasticity and empowers intersecting neural circuits to process and refine information. Thus, identification of genetic variation affecting molecules essential for the formation, specification and function of excitatory synapses is refocusing research efforts on ADHD pathogenesis to include the long-neglected glutamate system. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. and ECNP. All rights reserved.

  8. [Structure of tryptic fragments of a neurotoxin from black widow spider venom].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Volkova, T M; Galkina, T G; Kudelin, A B; Grishin, E V

    1991-04-01

    The N-terminal amino acid sequence of a neurotoxin from the venom of Latrodectus mactans tredecimguttatus (alpha-latrotoxin) was determined. Latrotoxin was subjected to the tryptic cleavage and total or partial amino acid sequences of 25 peptides were established. In total the tryptic fragments contained 252 amino acid residues. Essential structural information on cloning of the latrotoxin structural gene was obtained.

  9. Latrodectism: case report of a katipo spider (Latrodectus katipo) bite and review of the literature.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thatcher, Lucinda; Janes, Ron

    2012-03-09

    We describe the case of a 29-year-old man who was bitten on the leg by a katipo spider, a relative of the Australian redback and American black widow spiders, while camping in sand dunes at Mahanga Beach, Mahia (North Island of New Zealand). Symptoms of latrodectism developed within hours, and were not diminished until two doses of the antivenom had been administered. This is only the second case report of a katipo spider bite in the recent literature. The katipo spider bite produces significant symptoms, however an antivenom is available in some hospital pharmacies.

  10. Habitat preferences, diet, feeding strategy and social organization of the black spider monkey (Ateles paniscus paniscus Linnaeus 1758) in Surinam

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Roosmalen, van M.G.M.

    1980-01-01

    This study describes habitat choice of the Surinam black spider monkey ( Atelespaniscuspaniscus ) and clarifies complex temporal and spatial effects of food sources on the behaviour of a group of spider monkeys in a 350 ha study area in

  11. Artificial insemination in black-handed spider monkey (Ateles geoffroyi).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernández-López, L; Cerda-Molina, A L; Páez-Ponce, D L; Rojas-Maya, S; Mondragón-Ceballos, R

    2007-01-15

    Artificial insemination (AI) was performed in spider monkeys; these primates are vulnerable to extinction and usually do not reproduce spontaneously in captivity. Uterine cycles were followed by daily assessment of vaginal cytology, and corroborated a posteriori by concentrations of 17-beta estradiol and progesterone, measured by radioimmunoassay (RIA), in fecal samples collected once daily. Five females between 13 to 27 years old were inseminated intravaginally (with fresh semen) twice each during the periovulatory phase (Days 9-12 of the menstrual cycle; Day 0, first day of menstrual bleeding), from September to the first 3 weeks of November (most fertile months). Transcervical AI was not useful in this primate because the liquid portion of the semen completely solidified instead of liquefying as in other primates. Pregnancies were apparently achieved in 5 of 14 attempts. One female became pregnant after the first round of inseminations, delivered a healthy infant, was inseminated and got pregnant again (subsequently aborted). One female aborted, apparently due to an intramural uterine leiomyoma. Another two females stopped menstruating for a few months, then restarted menstruating (these females may have been pregnant and aborted). In conclusion, in spider monkeys: (1) captivity-induced stress did not inhibit reproduction; (2) fecal steroid hormones were useful to assess cyclicity; (3) the semen coagulum, which apparently is a tightly packed and large reservoir of spermatozoa, must not be discarded but used in AI; (4) old female spider monkeys did not have cessation of reproductive function.

  12. Neuroendocrine tumor in the lung of a captive black spider monkey (Ateles paniscus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cho, Ho-Seong; Kim, Yeong-Seob; Choi, Chan; Lee, Jae-Hyuk; Kurkure, Nitin V; Subramanian, Madhan; Park, Nam-Yong

    2007-07-01

    This paper describes a neuroendocrine (NE) tumor of the lung that was observed during the necropsy of a 14-year-old female black spider monkey (Ateles paniscus) with sudden death. Grossly, multifocal firm and coalescing nodular masses were observed in the lung. The histological examination showed the tumor to be an typical NE tumor with polygonal cells grouped in small solid aggregates, with regularly sized, spherical, centrally placed nuclei with modest, lightly granular cytoplasm suspended in a fibrovascular stroma. The immunohistochemical examination revealed the tumor to be positive for cytokeratin, chromogranin A and synaptophysin, and negative for CD56. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of NE tumor in the lung of the black spider monkey.

  13. Construction and characterization of bacterial artificial chromosome library of black-handed spider monkey (Ateles geoffroyi).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qian, Yaping; Jin, Li; Su, Bing

    2004-04-01

    The large-insert genomic DNA library is a critical resource for genome-wide genetic dissection of target species. We constructed a high-redundancy bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) library of a New World monkey species, the black-handed spider monkey (Ateles geoffroyi). A total of 193 152 BAC clones were generated in this library. The average insert size of the BAC clones was estimated to be 184.6 kb with the small inserts (50-100 kb) accounting for less than 3% and the non-recombinant clones only 1.2%. Assuming a similar genome size with humans, the spider monkey BAC library has about 11x genome coverage. In addition, by end sequencing of randomly selected BAC clones, we generated 367 sequence tags for the library. When blasted against human genome, they showed a good correlation between the number of hit clones and the size of the chromosomes, an indication of unbiased chromosomal distribution of the library. This black-handed spider monkey BAC library would serve as a valuable resource in comparative genomic study and large-scale genome sequencing of nonhuman primates.

  14. Habitat preferences, diet, feeding strategy and social organization of the black spider monkey [Ateles paniscus paniscus Linnaeus 1758] in Surinam

    OpenAIRE

    van Roosmalen, M. G. M.

    1985-01-01

    This study describes habitat choice of the Surinam black spider monkey ( Atelespaniscuspaniscus ) and clarifies complex temporal and spatial effects of food sources on the behaviour of a group of spider monkeys in a 350 ha study area in central Surinam in terms of food category, food plant identity and phenology, and in terms of quantity, density and dispersion of the most important of these food sources. It recognizes the fundamental i...

  15. Spider Invasion Across the Galaxy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hui, Chung-Yue

    2014-06-01

    The nature of the exotic stellar corpses which reincarnate by consuming their companion is reviewed. Apart from sucking life from their partners, they are actually eating the doomed companions away by their deadly and powerful particle/radiation beams. Such situation resembles that a female ¡°black widow¡± spider that eats its mate after mating. These celestial zombies are called - Millisecond pulsars (MSPs). In this review article, I will focus on the effort of Fermi Asian Network (FAN) in exploring these intricating objects over the last five years. Two special classes of MSPs are particularly striking. Since Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope has started surveying the gamma?ray sky, the population of ¡°black widows¡± has been boosted. Another dramatic class is so-called ¡°redbacks¡± (Australian cousin of ¡°black widows¡±) which has just emerged in the last few years. These MSPs provide us with a long-sought missing link in understanding the transition between accretion-powered and rotation-powered systems. The strategy of hunting MSPs through mulitwavelength observations of the unidentified Fermi objects is also reviewed.

  16. Fur rubbing behavior in free-ranging black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi) in Panama.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, C J

    2000-07-01

    Members of the population of black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi) on Barro Colorado Island, Panama, use the leaves of three Rutaceae species in a behavior that resembles fur rubbing in the white faced capuchin (Cebus capucinus). This behavior has not been reported from other sites where Ateles has been studied. During more than 1,200 hours of observation, 30 episodes of this behavior were recorded ad libitum. Adult males engage in this behavior more than adult females. Season did not impact the frequency of the behavior. The behavior described here differs in many respects from that reported for Cebus capucinus, and does not fit the hypotheses that the behavior functions in repelling insects or other antiseptic purposes. It is proposed that fur rubbing in this group of spider monkeys is a modification of a behavior previously recorded in Ateles and may function in scent marking.

  17. X-RAY EMISSION FROM J1446–4701, J1311–3430, AND OTHER BLACK WIDOW PULSARS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Arumugasamy, Prakash; Pavlov, George G. [Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics, 525 Davey Lab, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA 16802 (United States); Garmire, Gordon P., E-mail: pxa151@ucs.psu.edu [Huntingdon Institute for X-ray Astronomy, LLC, 10677 Franks Road, Huntingdon, PA 16652 (United States)

    2015-12-01

    We present the results of detailed X-ray analysis of two black-widow pulsars (BWPs), J1446–4701 and J1311–3430. PSR J1446–4701 is a BWP with orbital parameters near the median values of the sample of known BWPs. Its X-ray emission that was detected by XMM-Newton is well characterized by a soft power-law (PL) spectrum (photon index Γ ≈ 3), and it shows no significant orbital modulations. In view of a lack of radio eclipses and an optical non-detection, the system most likely has a low orbital inclination. PSR J1311–3430 is an extreme BWP with a very compact orbit and the lowest minimum mass companion. Our Chandra data confirm the hard Γ ≈ 1.3 emission seen in previous observations. Through phase-restricted spectral analysis, we found a hint (∼2.6σ) of spectral hardening around pulsar inferior conjunction. We also provide a uniform analysis of the 12 BWPs observed with Chandra and compare their X-ray properties. Pulsars with soft, Γ > 2.5 emission seem to have lower than average X-ray and γ-ray luminosities. We do not, however, see any other prominent correlation between the pulsar’s X-ray emission characteristics and any of its other properties. The contribution of the intra-binary shock to the total X-ray emission, if any, is not discernible in this sample of pulsars with shallow observations.

  18. Probing the Impact of Acidification on Spider Silk Assembly Kinetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Dian; Guo, Chengchen; Holland, Gregory P

    2015-07-13

    Spiders utilize fine adjustment of the physicochemical conditions within its silk spinning system to regulate spidroin assembly into solid silk fibers with outstanding mechanical properties. However, the exact mechanism about which this occurs remains elusive and is still hotly debated. In this study, the effect of acidification on spider silk assembly was investigated on native spidroins from the major ampullate (MA) gland fluid excised from Latrodectus hesperus (Black Widow) spiders. Incubating the protein-rich MA silk gland fluid at acidic pH conditions results in the formation of silk fibers that are 10-100 μm in length and ∼2 μm in diameter as judged by optical and electron microscope methods. The in vitro spider silk assembly kinetics were monitored as a function of pH with a (13)C solid-state MAS NMR approach. The results confirm the importance of acidic pH in the spider silk self-assembly process with observation of a sigmoidal nucleation-elongation kinetic profile. The rates of nucleation and elongation as well as the percentage of β-sheet structure in the grown fibers depend on the pH. These results confirm the importance of an acidic pH gradient along the spinning duct for spider silk formation and provide a powerful spectroscopic approach to probe the kinetics of spider silk formation under various biochemical conditions.

  19. Spider Transcriptomes Identify Ancient Large-Scale Gene Duplication Event Potentially Important in Silk Gland Evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, Thomas H; Garb, Jessica E; Hayashi, Cheryl Y; Arensburger, Peter; Ayoub, Nadia A

    2015-06-08

    The evolution of specialized tissues with novel functions, such as the silk synthesizing glands in spiders, is likely an influential driver of adaptive success. Large-scale gene duplication events and subsequent paralog divergence are thought to be required for generating evolutionary novelty. Such an event has been proposed for spiders, but not tested. We de novo assembled transcriptomes from three cobweb weaving spider species. Based on phylogenetic analyses of gene families with representatives from each of the three species, we found numerous duplication events indicative of a whole genome or segmental duplication. We estimated the age of the gene duplications relative to several speciation events within spiders and arachnids and found that the duplications likely occurred after the divergence of scorpions (order Scorpionida) and spiders (order Araneae), but before the divergence of the spider suborders Mygalomorphae and Araneomorphae, near the evolutionary origin of spider silk glands. Transcripts that are expressed exclusively or primarily within black widow silk glands are more likely to have a paralog descended from the ancient duplication event and have elevated amino acid replacement rates compared with other transcripts. Thus, an ancient large-scale gene duplication event within the spider lineage was likely an important source of molecular novelty during the evolution of silk gland-specific expression. This duplication event may have provided genetic material for subsequent silk gland diversification in the true spiders (Araneomorphae). © The Author(s) 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  20. Copulation in free-ranging black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, Christina J

    2006-05-01

    I report ad libitum data on 18 copulations involving free-ranging black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi) on Barro Colorado Island, Panama. All copulations were performed in a dorsoventral position, as is typically reported for this genus. Intromission often appeared difficult to achieve, possibly as a result of the large size of the glans penis in these animals. The average length from intromission to termination of thrusting exceeded 17 min, followed by an average period of almost 2 min before separation occurred, which suggests the possibility of a copulatory lock. Offspring of the female participant were almost always in close proximity to or in contact with the pair, and harassment by the offspring was observed only during the final stages of the copulation. All but one copulatory event occurred in complete seclusion from other adult males, and sexual behavior was not limited to any one adult male in the group. 2006 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  1. Fecal analysis of ovarian cycles in female black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, C J; Shideler, S E; Todd, H E; Lasley, B L

    2001-06-01

    An enzyme immunoassay (EIA) was applied to characterize the reproductive endocrinology of adult female black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi). Analysis of paired urine and fecal samples, collected from two females housed at San Diego Zoo, confirmed that the EIAs employed provided quantitative measurements of ovarian sex steroid hormones. Fecal metabolite levels were significantly correlated with those in urine, confirming that feces are a valid source of steroid metabolites in this species. The excretion of these metabolites in feces lagged urinary excretion by 1-2 days. The ovarian cycle profiles of the two captive females and five free-ranging females are comparable, with an average length of approximately 20-23 days. Cyclical bleeding, as previously reported, was observed in one of the two captive females. Pregnancy was detected in four free-ranging females, and early fetal loss for one female was indicated by hormonal data.

  2. Blueprint for a high-performance biomaterial: full-length spider dragline silk genes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nadia A Ayoub

    Full Text Available Spider dragline (major ampullate silk outperforms virtually all other natural and manmade materials in terms of tensile strength and toughness. For this reason, the mass-production of artificial spider silks through transgenic technologies has been a major goal of biomimetics research. Although all known arthropod silk proteins are extremely large (>200 kiloDaltons, recombinant spider silks have been designed from short and incomplete cDNAs, the only available sequences. Here we describe the first full-length spider silk gene sequences and their flanking regions. These genes encode the MaSp1 and MaSp2 proteins that compose the black widow's high-performance dragline silk. Each gene includes a single enormous exon (>9000 base pairs that translates into a highly repetitive polypeptide. Patterns of variation among sequence repeats at the amino acid and nucleotide levels indicate that the interaction of selection, intergenic recombination, and intragenic recombination governs the evolution of these highly unusual, modular proteins. Phylogenetic footprinting revealed putative regulatory elements in non-coding flanking sequences. Conservation of both upstream and downstream flanking sequences was especially striking between the two paralogous black widow major ampullate silk genes. Because these genes are co-expressed within the same silk gland, there may have been selection for similarity in regulatory regions. Our new data provide complete templates for synthesis of recombinant silk proteins that significantly improve the degree to which artificial silks mimic natural spider dragline fibers.

  3. 20 CFR 410.320 - Determination of relationship; widow.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-04-01

    ... 20 Employees' Benefits 2 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Determination of relationship; widow. 410.320... OF 1969, TITLE IV-BLACK LUNG BENEFITS (1969- ) Relationship and Dependency § 410.320 Determination of relationship; widow. An individual will be considered to be the widow of a miner if: (a) The courts of the...

  4. Acidic Residues Control the Dimerization of the N-terminal Domain of Black Widow Spiders’ Major Ampullate Spidroin 1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer, Joschka; Schaal, Daniel; Eisoldt, Lukas; Schweimer, Kristian; Schwarzinger, Stephan; Scheibel, Thomas

    2016-09-01

    Dragline silk is the most prominent amongst spider silks and comprises two types of major ampullate spidroins (MaSp) differing in their proline content. In the natural spinning process, the conversion of soluble MaSp into a tough fiber is, amongst other factors, triggered by dimerization and conformational switching of their helical amino-terminal domains (NRN). Both processes are induced by protonation of acidic residues upon acidification along the spinning duct. Here, the structure and monomer-dimer-equilibrium of the domain NRN1 of Latrodectus hesperus MaSp1 and variants thereof have been investigated, and the key residues for both could be identified. Changes in ionic composition and strength within the spinning duct enable electrostatic interactions between the acidic and basic pole of two monomers which prearrange into an antiparallel dimer. Upon naturally occurring acidification this dimer is stabilized by protonation of residue E114. A conformational change is independently triggered by protonation of clustered acidic residues (D39, E76, E81). Such step-by-step mechanism allows a controlled spidroin assembly in a pH- and salt sensitive manner, preventing premature aggregation of spider silk proteins in the gland and at the same time ensuring fast and efficient dimer formation and stabilization on demand in the spinning duct.

  5. Seasonal variations of fecal progesterone and 17beta-estradiol in captive female black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cerda-Molina, A L; Hernández-López, L; Páez-Ponce, D L; Rojas-Maya, S; Mondragón-Ceballos, R

    2006-11-01

    A number of studies in free-ranging and captive spider monkeys (Ateles spp.) have shown that this genus is able to reproduce throughout the entire year. Nonetheless, it is still controversial whether births, and therefore conceptions, tend to be more frequent during certain seasons. In the present study, we monitored changes in fecal 17beta-estradiol and progesterone for approximately 1 years in five female black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi) kept in captivity in Mexico City. The objective was to determine whether hormone concentrations and menstrual cycles of summer and autumn accounted for a greater chance of conception than those of winter and spring, consistent with birth patterns previously reported. We collected fecal samples from the five monkeys almost daily for 1 year (March 2004 to February 2005) and used radioimmunoassay of fecal extracts to determine concentrations of 17beta-estradiol and progesterone. Concurrently, menstrual cycle phases were determined by cytological evaluation of vaginal swabs. Periovulatory 17beta-estradiol concentrations were significantly higher in autumn than in winter, spring or summer. Moreover, as evidenced by progesterone peaks, most of the summer-autumn menstrual cycles were ovulatory; in contrast, most of the winter and spring cycles were anovulatory. In conclusion, our data supported the notion that, although not a strictly seasonal reproducer, the black-handed spider monkey is more likely to conceive at the end of the rainy season and throughout autumn.

  6. Housing with females increases testosterone and cortisol levels in captive groups of black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cerda-Molina, A L; Hernández-López, L; Díaz-Díaz, G; Mejía-Varas, F; Chavira, R; Mondragón-Ceballos, R

    2012-01-01

    The black-handed spider monkey (Ateles geoffroyi) is a seasonal reproducer that requires a seclusiveness to copulate and has a fusion-fission social system. These features impose important restrictions to achieve reproduction of captive animals. We investigated if group composition in captive spider monkeys has any endocrine effects. We compared testosterone and cortisol concentrations during the mating season in all-male and multifemale-multimale groups to study if the former condition impairs reproductive potential and increases stress. Concentrations of testosterone and cortisol of males living with females were higher than those of all-male groups. In the multifemale-multimale condition, dominant males had the highest levels of testosterone, while the youngest males showed the highest concentrations of cortisol. Results show that males adjust well to isosexual grouping, this being an appropriate condition to keep animals when controlled reproduction is sought. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  7. Coagulopathy after spider bites in a six-year-old boy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ansari SH.

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available Background: Spider bites are common in most parts of the world. In some areas, where snake or scorpion bites are common, spider bites may not be considered a significant problem by the general public and those who have been bitten by spiders may not go to a hospital. However, significant problems are observed in the victims of certain species of spiders including: widow spider (of the genus Latrodectus, including the black widow and brown spiders (of the genus Loxosceles, such as the brown recluse. Case: We report a six-year-old boy, admitted to the hospital two weeks after suffering a spider bite. The patient presented with a severe nose bleed, ecchymosis and purpura, as well as anemia, indicating a clotting disorder. Laboratory results revealed abnormal values for prothrombin time (PT >50 sec, partial thromboplastin time (PTT >120 min and fibrinogen = 0 mg/dl, whereas factor VIII was normal according to a mixing study, with a normal platelet count of 350,000/µl. The patient was managed with fresh frozen plasma every 12 h, and was discharged one week after hospital admission. At present, the patient is well with more normal laboratory results one month after treatment: PT=13.4 sec, PTT= 34 sec, fibrinogen=105 mg/dl.         Conclusions: Although spider bites are uncommon in Iran, severe systemic reactions may occur in the pediatric population requiring admission to the pediatric intensive care unit. These systemic reactions may include hemolytic anemia coagulopathy and renal failure.

  8. Early events in the evolution of spider silk genes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James Starrett

    Full Text Available Silk spinning is essential to spider ecology and has had a key role in the expansive diversification of spiders. Silk is composed primarily of proteins called spidroins, which are encoded by a multi-gene family. Spidroins have been studied extensively in the derived clade, Orbiculariae (orb-weavers, from the suborder Araneomorphae ('true spiders'. Orbicularians produce a suite of different silks, and underlying this repertoire is a history of duplication and spidroin gene divergence. A second class of silk proteins, Egg Case Proteins (ECPs, is known only from the orbicularian species, Lactrodectus hesperus (Western black widow. In L. hesperus, ECPs bond with tubuliform spidroins to form egg case silk fibers. Because most of the phylogenetic diversity of spiders has not been sampled for their silk genes, there is limited understanding of spidroin gene family history and the prevalence of ECPs. Silk genes have not been reported from the suborder Mesothelae (segmented spiders, which diverged from all other spiders >380 million years ago, and sampling from Mygalomorphae (tarantulas, trapdoor spiders and basal araneomorph lineages is sparse. In comparison to orbicularians, mesotheles and mygalomorphs have a simpler silk biology and thus are hypothesized to have less diversity of silk genes. Here, we present cDNAs synthesized from the silk glands of six mygalomorph species, a mesothele, and a non-orbicularian araneomorph, and uncover a surprisingly rich silk gene diversity. In particular, we find ECP homologs in the mesothele, suggesting that ECPs were present in the common ancestor of extant spiders, and originally were not specialized to complex with tubuliform spidroins. Furthermore, gene-tree/species-tree reconciliation analysis reveals that numerous spidroin gene duplications occurred after the split between Mesothelae and Opisthothelae (Mygalomorphae plus Araneomorphae. We use the spidroin gene tree to reconstruct the evolution of amino acid

  9. Early events in the evolution of spider silk genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Starrett, James; Garb, Jessica E; Kuelbs, Amanda; Azubuike, Ugochi O; Hayashi, Cheryl Y

    2012-01-01

    Silk spinning is essential to spider ecology and has had a key role in the expansive diversification of spiders. Silk is composed primarily of proteins called spidroins, which are encoded by a multi-gene family. Spidroins have been studied extensively in the derived clade, Orbiculariae (orb-weavers), from the suborder Araneomorphae ('true spiders'). Orbicularians produce a suite of different silks, and underlying this repertoire is a history of duplication and spidroin gene divergence. A second class of silk proteins, Egg Case Proteins (ECPs), is known only from the orbicularian species, Lactrodectus hesperus (Western black widow). In L. hesperus, ECPs bond with tubuliform spidroins to form egg case silk fibers. Because most of the phylogenetic diversity of spiders has not been sampled for their silk genes, there is limited understanding of spidroin gene family history and the prevalence of ECPs. Silk genes have not been reported from the suborder Mesothelae (segmented spiders), which diverged from all other spiders >380 million years ago, and sampling from Mygalomorphae (tarantulas, trapdoor spiders) and basal araneomorph lineages is sparse. In comparison to orbicularians, mesotheles and mygalomorphs have a simpler silk biology and thus are hypothesized to have less diversity of silk genes. Here, we present cDNAs synthesized from the silk glands of six mygalomorph species, a mesothele, and a non-orbicularian araneomorph, and uncover a surprisingly rich silk gene diversity. In particular, we find ECP homologs in the mesothele, suggesting that ECPs were present in the common ancestor of extant spiders, and originally were not specialized to complex with tubuliform spidroins. Furthermore, gene-tree/species-tree reconciliation analysis reveals that numerous spidroin gene duplications occurred after the split between Mesothelae and Opisthothelae (Mygalomorphae plus Araneomorphae). We use the spidroin gene tree to reconstruct the evolution of amino acid compositions of

  10. GMRT DISCOVERY OF PSR J1544+4937: AN ECLIPSING BLACK-WIDOW PULSAR IDENTIFIED WITH A FERMI-LAT SOURCE

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bhattacharyya, B.; Roy, J.; Gupta, Y. [National Centre for Radio Astrophysics, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Pune 411 007 (India); Ray, P. S.; Wolff, M. T.; Wood, K. S. [Space Science Division, Naval Research Laboratory, Washington, DC 20375-5352 (United States); Bhattacharya, D. [Inter-University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics, Pune 411 007 (India); Romani, R. W.; Den Hartog, P. R.; Kerr, M.; Michelson, P. F. [W. W. Hansen Experimental Physics Laboratory, Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology, Department of Physics and SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305 (United States); Ransom, S. M. [National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO), Charlottesville, VA 22903 (United States); Ferrara, E. C.; Harding, A. K. [NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD 20771 (United States); Camilo, F. [Columbia Astrophysics Laboratory, Columbia University, New York, NY 10027 (United States); Cognard, I. [Laboratoire de Physique et Chimie de l' Environnement, LPCE UMR 6115 CNRS, F-45071 Orleans Cedex 02 (France); Johnston, S.; Keith, M. [CSIRO Astronomy and Space Science, Australia Telescope National Facility, Epping, NSW 1710 (Australia); Saz Parkinson, P. M. [Santa Cruz Institute for Particle Physics, Department of Physics and Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics, University of California at Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, CA 95064 (United States); Wood, D. L. [Praxis Inc., Alexandria, VA 22303 (United States)

    2013-08-10

    Using the Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope, we performed deep observations to search for radio pulsations in the directions of unidentified Fermi-Large Area Telescope {gamma}-ray sources. We report the discovery of an eclipsing black-widow millisecond pulsar, PSR J1544+4937, identified with the uncataloged {gamma}-ray source FERMI J1544.2+4941. This 2.16 ms pulsar is in a 2.9 hr compact circular orbit with a very low mass companion (M{sub c} > 0.017M{sub Sun }). At 322 MHz this pulsar is found to be eclipsing for 13% of its orbit, whereas at 607 MHz the pulsar is detected throughout the low-frequency eclipse phase. Variations in the eclipse ingress phase are observed, indicating a clumpy and variable eclipsing medium. Moreover, additional short-duration absorption events are observed around the eclipse boundaries. Using the radio timing ephemeris we were able to detect {gamma}-ray pulsations from this pulsar, confirming it as the source powering the {gamma}-ray emission.

  11. Genetic identification of an oxyurid from a captive, black-handed spider monkey--implications for treatment and control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koehler, Anson V; Borel, Stéphanie; Hoby, Stefan; Hentrich, Brigitte; Gottstein, Bruno; Gasser, Robin B

    2014-09-01

    Parasites are of major clinical significance in captive primates in zoos, particularly those with direct life cycles. Oxyurid nematodes can be a persistent problem, as infection intensity and environmental contamination with infective eggs are usually high. Observations at the Basel Zoo in Switzerland have revealed that particularly black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi) exhibit continuous oxyurid nematode infection(s), despite regular deworming with anthelmintics. In the present study, using a molecular approach, we were able to identify the nematode (Trypanoxyuris atelis) causing this ongoing problem, and we are now evaluating a practical treatment and control regimen to tackle this parasite problem.

  12. Sperm quality differences between the rainy and dry seasons in captive black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernández-López, Leonor; Parra, Gerardo Cerezo; Cerda-Molina, Ana Lilia; Pérez-Bolaños, Stephanella C; Díaz Sánchez, Vicente; Mondragón-Ceballos, Ricardo

    2002-05-01

    The present work provides an assessment of sperm measures (concentration, motility, viability, etc.) of three black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi) during the rainy and dry seasons in Mexico City, as well as an evaluation of the between-subjects variability of sperm quality. Twenty samples obtained by rectal electroejaculation and digested with trypsin were evaluated. The results showed that during the dry season (n = 9) the semen samples were of better quality than those obtained during the rainy season (n = 11). The individual animals showed differences in sperm concentration, although there were no differences in sperm quality. Copyright 2002 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  13. Patterns of behavior across reproductive states of free-ranging female black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, Christina J

    2004-06-01

    Reports on the behavior of spider monkeys (genus Ateles) describe a suite of 5-6 behaviors that are indicative of an estrous female. This study presents hormonal data as an independent measure of reproductive state to determine if these behaviors are associated with any particular reproductive state or stage of the ovarian cycle. Fecal samples collected from 6 free-ranging female black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi) over the course of 11 months were assayed for estrogen (E1C) and progesterone (PdG) metabolites, using an enzyme immunoassay. Behavioral data collected from the same females were analyzed for patterns associated with different reproductive states. A more detailed analysis of behavioral data associated with reproductively cycling periods determined whether each behavior clustered with copulations or a particular phase in the ovarian cycle. Observations of place-sniffing were more frequent for 4 of 5 females when reproductively cycling. Of all copulations observed, 80% occurred when the female participant was reproductively cycling. In addition, the rates of self-clitoral hold and self-clitoral rub behaviors were significantly higher for 2 of 4 and 4 of 5 of females, respectively, when reproductively cycling. No behavior consistently occurred in association with copulations or with any particular phase in the ovarian cycle. Results from this study suggest that the behaviors tested in this paper can provide some information regarding female spider monkey reproductive state (whether or not she is reproductively cycling), but that they are not indicators of estrus in female spider monkeys. Copyright 2003 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  14. Seasonal emission of seminal coagulum and in vivo sperm dynamics in the black-handed spider monkey (Ateles geoffroyi).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernández-López, L; Cerda-Molina, A L; Páez-Ponce, L D; Mondragón-Ceballos, R

    2008-03-01

    The ejaculate of diverse primate species consists of two portions, liquid and solid; the latter, known as the seminal coagulum, is thought to sequester large numbers of sperm. In the black-handed spider monkey (Ateles geoffroyi), ejaculates collected by electroejaculation did not always contain seminal coagulum. The objective of the present study was to determine seasonal emission of seminal coagulum and in vivo sperm dynamics in the black-handed spider monkey. Seminal coagulum emission was related to season; it was more frequent in the dry season, coincident with maximal female fertility. Sperm concentration was higher (P = 0.02) in the dry season (dry vs. rainy season: 137.9 +/- 15.7 sperm/mL vs. 82.56 +/- 14.7 x1 0(6) sperm/mL; mean +/- S.E.M.) but also in ejaculates (collected during the rainy season) that had seminal coagulum (coagulum vs. no coagulum: 140.0 +/- 29.3 sperm/mL vs. 31.2+/-0.1 x 10(6) sperm/mL, P<0.001). In semen samples collected from the uterus after AI, the percentage of linearly motile sperm was higher during the dry season (dry vs. rainy: 9.1+/-2.1% vs. 5.9+/-2.5%), as well as whenever coagulum was present (coagulum vs. no coagulum: 13.0+/-3.2% vs. 2.0+/-0.9%, P<0.001).

  15. Composition and Function of Spider Glues Maintained During the Evolution of Cobwebs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jain, Dharamdeep; Zhang, Ci; Cool, Lydia Rose; Blackledge, Todd A; Wesdemiotis, Chrys; Miyoshi, Toshikazu; Dhinojwala, Ali

    2015-10-12

    Capture silks are an interesting class of biological glues that help spiders subdue their prey. Viscid capture silk produced by the orb web spiders is a combination of hygroscopic salts that aid in water uptake and interact with adhesive glycoproteins to make them soft and sticky. The orb was a stepping stone to the evolution of new web types, but little is known about the adhesives in these webs. For instance, cobweb spiders evolved from orb-weaving ancestors and utilize glue in specialized sticky gumfoot threads rather than an elastic spiral. Early investigation suggests that gumfoot adhesives are quite different viscid glues because they lack a visible glycoprotein core, act as viscoelastic fluids rather than solids, and are largely invariant to humidity. Here, we use spectroscopic and staining methods to show that the gumfoot silk produced by Latrodectus hesperus (western black widow) is composed of hygroscopic organic salts and water insoluble glycoproteins, similar to viscid silk, in addition to a low concentration of spider coating peptides reported before. Our adhesion studies reveal that the organic salts play an important role in adhesion, similar to that seen in orb web spiders, but modulating function at much lower humidity. Our work shows more similarities in the viscid silk produced by orb web and cobweb spiders than previously anticipated and provide guidelines for developing synthetic adhesives that can work in dry to humid environments.

  16. The seminal coagulum favours passage of fast-moving sperm into the uterus in the black-handed spider monkey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernández-López, Leonor; Cerda-Molina, Ana Lilia; Páez-Ponce, Denisse L; Mondragón-Ceballos, Ricardo

    2008-10-01

    In addition to gametes, mammalian internal fertilisation has required the evolution of assorted anatomical, physiological and biochemical devices to deal with intra- and inter-sexual conflict such as sperm competition and female cryptic choice respectively. The seminal coagulum of primates and other mammals is viewed as one of such devices. Among primates, the seminal coagulum characteristically occurs in multi-male and multi-female species, leading us to suppose that it intervenes in sperm competition. However, it can also provide cues to the female reproductive tract about male desired or undesired traits, and therefore deter or favour sperm survival and migration. The present work investigates whether the seminal coagulum of the black-handed spider monkey enhances sperm fertilisation chances by improving the female reproductive tract conditions, and if the female reproductive tract is 'blind' to semen or behaves selectively towards ejaculates of different males. A series of artificial inseminations were done in five females, using the ejaculates of three different males, one at a time, and measuring the presence of distinct types of sperm inside the uteri at 10, 30 and 60 min following the insemination. The presence of coagulum, menstrual phase, and male and female identity only affected fast, straight-moving sperm, with larger amounts of fast sperm appearing inside the uteri when ejaculates had seminal coagulum, as well as when in the periovulatory phase. There was great intra-uterine fast-sperm variation regarding which male's semen inseminated which female. The results provide evidence to account for sexual conflict in the spider monkey as well as a methodological approach to this kind of study.

  17. The first cytogenetic characterization of the poisonous black widow spider Latrodectus gr. curacaviensis from Brazil, with chromosomal review of the family Theridiidae (Arachnida, Araneae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Araujo, Douglas; Maia, Ulysses Madureira; Brescovit, Antonio Domingos

    2010-02-01

    In this paper we present, for the first time, cytogenetical data on Latrodectus gr. curacaviensis (Theridiidae) from Brazil, as well as the first data on meiosis and sex chromosome system of this genus. Testes were submitted to colchicine, hypotonic, and fixation treatment, and chromosomal preparations were stained with Giemsa solution. The analysis showed 2n=26 telo/acrocentric chromosomes in spermatogonial metaphases. Metaphase I exhibited 12 autosomal bivalents and two sex chromosome univalents (12II + X(1)X(2)). All bivalents revealed one terminal chiasma. Metaphases II confirmed the sex chromosome system, showing 12 autosomes or 12 autosomes plus two X chromosomes, respectively. Male karyotype prevailing in theridiids is formed by 2n=22 chromosomes, including sex chromosome system X(1)X(2) in all species. The Latrodectus species of the geometricus clade analyzed until now showed smaller diploid number (2nfemale symbol=16 and 2nfemale symbol=18) than the species of the mactans clade (2nfemale symbol=24 and 2nfemale symbol=26). Thus, according to the chromosome number, the examined Latrodectus species seems to be related to the mactans clade.

  18. Toxicity of the venom of Latrodectus (Araneae: Theridiidae) spiders from different regions of Argentina and neutralization by therapeutic antivenoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Roodt, Adolfo Rafael; Lanari, Laura Cecilia; Laskowicz, Rodrigo Daniel; Costa de Oliveira, Vanessa; Irazu, Lucia Elvira; González, Alda; Giambelluca, Luis; Nicolai, Néstor; Barragán, Javier Hugo; Ramallo, Leticia; López, Raúl Alfredo; Lopardo, Jorge; Jensen, Oscar; Larrieu, Edmundo; Calabró, Arnoldo; Vurcharchuc, Miriam Guadalupe; Lago, Néstor Rubén; García, Susana Isabel; de Titto, Ernesto Horacio; Damín, Carlos Fabián

    2017-05-01

    "Black widow" spiders belong to the genus Latrodectus and are one of the few spiders in the world whose bite can cause severe envenomation in humans and domestic animals. In Argentina, these spiders are distributed throughout the country and are responsible for the highest number of bites by spiders of toxicological sanitary interest. Here, we studied the toxicity and some biochemical and immunochemical characteristics of eighteen venom samples from Latrodectus spiders from eight different provinces of Argentina, and the neutralization of some of these samples by two therapeutic antivenoms used in the country for the treatment of envenomation and by a anti-Latrodectus antivenom prepared against the venom of Latrodectus mactans from Mexico. We observed important toxicity in all the samples studied and a variation in the toxicity of samples, even in those from the same region and province and even in the same Latrodectus species from the same region. The therapeutic antivenoms efficiently neutralized all the venoms studied. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Evidence from Multiple Species that Spider Silk Glue Component ASG2 is a Spidroin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collin, Matthew A; Clarke, Thomas H; Ayoub, Nadia A; Hayashi, Cheryl Y

    2016-02-15

    Spiders in the superfamily Araneoidea produce viscous glue from aggregate silk glands. Aggregate glue coats prey-capture threads and hampers the escape of prey from webs, thereby increasing the foraging success of spiders. cDNAs for Aggregate Spider Glue 1 (ASG1) and 2 (ASG2) have been previously described from the golden orb-weaver, Nephila clavipes, and Western black widow, Latrodectus hesperus. To further investigate aggregate glues, we assembled ASG1 and ASG2 from genomic target capture libraries constructed from three species of cob-web weavers and three species of orb-web weavers, all araneoids. We show that ASG1 is unlikely to be a glue, but rather is part of a widespread arthropod gene family, the peritrophic matrix proteins. For ASG2, we demonstrate its remarkable architectural and sequence similarities to spider silk fibroins, indicating that ASG2 is a member of the spidroin gene family. Thus, spidroins have diversified into glues in addition to task-specific, high performance fibers.

  20. Neutralization of Latrodectus mactans and L. hesperus venom by redback spider (L. hasseltii) antivenom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daly, F F; Hill, R E; Bogdan, G M; Dart, R C

    2001-01-01

    To test the effectiveness of L. hasseltii (redback spider) antivenom in neutralizing the lethal effects of L. hesperus and L. mactans (North American black widow) venoms. LD50 values for the L. hesperus and L. mactans venom preparations were determined. A prospective, randomized, double-blind antivenom efficacy experiment was then performed for each venom using a mouse envenomation model. The following treatments were premixed and incubated at 25 degrees C for 1 hour prior to intraperitoneal injection: 1) saline control + protein control, 2) saline control + L. hasseltii antivenom, 3) L. hesperus or L. mactans venom + protein control, and 4) L. hesperus or L. mactans venom + L. hasseltii antivenom. The study endpoints were time elapsed until death and survival at 24 hours. The mouse LD50 values for L. hesperus and L. mactans venoms were 0.64 mg/kg and 0.26 mg/kg, respectively. In the efficacy trial, all mice in group 3 (L. hesperus or L. mactans venom and protein control) died. In both experiments, all mice in group 4 (L. hesperus or L. mactans venom + antivenom) survived (p mactans venom obtained by electrical stimulation of live adult spiders. Redback spider antivenom is effective in neutralizing the lethal effects of L. hesperus and L. mactans venoms in a mouse envenomation model. While this study is limited by the optimized premixing of antigen with antibody, it generates the hypothesis that redback antivenom would be effective in the treatment of latrodectism in humans caused by the two clinically relevant species of North American widow spiders.

  1. Species status and conservation issues of New Zealand's endemic Latrodectus spider species (Araneae: Theridiidae)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vink, Cor J; Sirvid, Phillip J; Malumbres-Olarte, Jagoba

    2008-01-01

    New Zealand has two endemic widow spiders, Latrodectus katipo Powell, 1871 and L. atritus Urquhart, 1890. Both species face many conservation threats and are actively managed. The species status of the Latrodectus spiders of New Zealand was assessed using molecular (COI, ITS1, ITS2) and morpholog...

  2. High population density of black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi) in Costa Rican lowland wet forest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weghorst, Jennifer A

    2007-04-01

    The main objective of this study was to estimate the population density and demographic structure of spider monkeys living in wet forest in the vicinity of Sirena Biological Station, Corcovado National Park, Costa Rica. Results of a 14-month line-transect survey showed that spider monkeys of Sirena have one of the highest population densities ever recorded for this genus. Density estimates varied, however, depending on the method chosen to estimate transect width. Data from behavioral monitoring were available to compare density estimates derived from the survey, providing a check of the survey's accuracy. A combination of factors has most probably contributed to the high density of Ateles, including habitat protection within a national park and high diversity of trees of the fig family, Moraceae. Although natural densities of spider monkeys at Sirena are substantially higher than those recorded at most other sites and in previous studies at this site, mean subgroup size and age ratios were similar to those determined in previous studies. Sex ratios were similar to those of other sites with high productivity. Although high densities of preferred fruit trees in the wet, productive forests of Sirena may support a dense population of spider monkeys, other demographic traits recorded at Sirena fall well within the range of values recorded elsewhere for the species.

  3. Extraction of venom and venom gland microdissections from spiders for proteomic and transcriptomic analyses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garb, Jessica E

    2014-11-03

    Venoms are chemically complex secretions typically comprising numerous proteins and peptides with varied physiological activities. Functional characterization of venom proteins has important biomedical applications, including the identification of drug leads or probes for cellular receptors. Spiders are the most species rich clade of venomous organisms, but the venoms of only a few species are well-understood, in part due to the difficulty associated with collecting minute quantities of venom from small animals. This paper presents a protocol for the collection of venom from spiders using electrical stimulation, demonstrating the procedure on the Western black widow (Latrodectus hesperus). The collected venom is useful for varied downstream analyses including direct protein identification via mass spectrometry, functional assays, and stimulation of venom gene expression for transcriptomic studies. This technique has the advantage over protocols that isolate venom from whole gland homogenates, which do not separate genuine venom components from cellular proteins that are not secreted as part of the venom. Representative results demonstrate the detection of known venom peptides from the collected sample using mass spectrometry. The venom collection procedure is followed by a protocol for dissecting spider venom glands, with results demonstrating that this leads to the characterization of venom-expressed proteins and peptides at the sequence level.

  4. To whom the play signal is directed: a study of headshaking in black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pellis, Sergio M; Pellis, Vivien C

    2011-02-01

    Spider monkeys shake their heads so as to facilitate amicable social contact. This occurs frequently during vigorous play fighting, and so is common during the juvenile period. Occasionally, juvenile spider monkeys use headshakes during nonsocial locomotor play. In this study, head shaking in early infancy and in adulthood was studied in a captive troop of spider monkeys, with a total of 8 infants studied from shortly after birth to just before weaning. Three hypotheses to account for these nonsocial headshakes were tested. The play as the experience of the unexpected hypothesis was found wanting because nonsocial headshakes were most common in early infancy, before the onset of the juvenile peak in play. The immature misdirection of signals hypothesis was also found wanting because the headshakes were correctly directed at other monkeys, but not at inanimate objects that were grabbed and mouthed. Both also failed to predict the occurrence of the observed nonsocial headshakes in adults. The hypothesis best supported by the data is that, under some situations, headshakes are self-directed to promote action when confronting contexts of uncertainty.

  5. Zero-order manipulation task to obtain a food reward in Colombian black spider monkeys (Ateles fusciceps rufiventris) kept in a zoo

    OpenAIRE

    Högberg, Sofia

    2010-01-01

    Spider monkeys (Ateles sp.) are common in zoological parks, but rare in scientific publications. Studies on tool use in primates have mostly focused on impressive tool users such as chimpanzees. Spider monkeys fulfill several criteria that are known to be associated with tool use. To be able to give an appropriate environment and enrichment for spider monkeys in captivity more knowledge is needed about their cognitive abilities. In this study we wanted to see if five male spider m...

  6. Neurotoxic activity and ultrastructural changes in muscles caused by the brown widow spider Latrodectus geometricus venom Actividad neurotóxica y cambios ultraestructurales en musculos causados por el veneno de la araña viuda marrón Latrodectus geometricus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matias Reyes-Lugo

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available Brown widow spider (Latrodectus geometricus venom (BrWSV produces few local lesions and intense systemic reactions such as cramps, harsh muscle pains, nausea, vomiting and hypertension. Approximately 16 protein bands under reducing conditions and ~ 14 bands under non-reducing conditions on a 12.5% sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis were observed. Neurotoxic clinical manifestations were confirmed in vivo, while proteolytic activity was demonstrated on gelatine film. Severe ultrastructural damages in mice skeletal muscles were observed at 3, 6, 12 and 24 h postinjection with at total of 45 µg of venom protein. Infiltration of eosinophils and ruptures of the cellular membranes were observed in the muscles along with swelling of the nuclear cover and interruption of the collagen periodicity. Altered mitochondrias and autophage vacuoles, nuclear indentation and mitochondria without cristae, slight increment of intermyofibrillar and subsarcolemic spaces and myelinic figures formation were also observed. In the capillary, endothelial membrane unfolding into the lumen was noticed; along with myelinic figures compatible with a toxic myopathy. Swollen sarcotubular systems with lysis of membrane, intense mitochondria autophagia and areas without pinocytic vesicles were observed. Swollen mitochondria surrounded by necrotic areas, myofibrillar disorganization and big vacuolas of the sarcotubular system, degenerated mitochondrium with formation of myelinic figure was seen. Glycogenosomes with small particulate, muscle type glycogen was noticed. Autophagic vacuole (autophagolysosomes and necrotic areas were also noticed. These damages may be due to interactive effects of the multifactorial action of venom components. However, Latrodectus geometricus venom molecules may also be utilized as neuro therapeutic tools, as they affect neuronal activities with high affinity and selectivity. To our knowledge, the present study is the first

  7. Spider Glue Proteins Have Distinct Architectures Compared with Traditional Spidroin Family Members*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vasanthavada, Keshav; Hu, Xiaoyi; Tuton-Blasingame, Tiffany; Hsia, Yang; Sampath, Sujatha; Pacheco, Ryan; Freeark, Jordan; Falick, Arnold M.; Tang, Simon; Fong, Justine; Kohler, Kristin; La Mattina-Hawkins, Coby; Vierra, Craig

    2012-01-01

    Adhesive spider glues are required to perform a variety of tasks, including web construction, prey capture, and locomotion. To date, little is known regarding the molecular and structural features of spider glue proteins, in particular bioadhesives that interconnect dragline or scaffolding silks during three-dimensional web construction. Here we use biochemical and structural approaches to identify and characterize two aggregate gland specific gene products, AgSF1 and AgSF2, and demonstrate that these proteins co-localize to the connection joints of both webs and wrapping silks spun from the black widow spider, Latrodectus hesperus. Protein architectures are markedly divergent between AgSF1 and AgSF2, as well as traditional spider silk fibroin family members, suggesting connection joints consist of a complex proteinaceous network. AgSF2 represents a nonglycosylated 40-kDa protein that has novel internal amino acid block repeats with the consensus sequence NVNVN embedded in a glycine-rich matrix. Analysis of the amino acid sequence of AgSF1 reveals pentameric QPGSG iterations that are similar to conserved modular elements within mammalian elastin, a rubber-like elastomeric protein that interfaces with collagen. Wet-spinning methodology using purified recombinant proteins show AgSF1 has the potential to self-assemble into fibers. X-ray fiber diffraction studies performed on these synthetic fibers reveal the presence of noncrystalline domains that resemble classical rubber networks. Collectively, these data support that the aggregate gland serves to extrude a protein mixture that contains substances that allow for the self-assembly of fiber-like structures that interface with dragline silks to mediate prey capture. PMID:22927444

  8. Seasonal variations in black-faced black spider monkey (Ateles chamek) habitat use and ranging behavior in a southern Amazonian tropical forest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wallace, Robert B

    2006-04-01

    Data are presented regarding the habitat use and ranging behavior of a spider monkey (Ateles chamek) community at Lago Caiman in northeastern Bolivia. Habitat use was driven primarily by fruit availability and distribution across the community home range. Strong seasonal variations occurred in fruit availability within all five of the floristically and phenologically distinct habitat types identified within the study site, and the spider monkeys dramatically shifted their ranging according to which habitat was richest in fleshy fruits. This use of local habitat diversity resulted in an unusually elongated shape for the home range that was otherwise typical of previous Ateles studies in terms of size. Ranging behavior was clumped and community core areas shifted seasonally across the focal community home range. Individual core areas were not relevant to the study due to dramatic community-wide shifts in ranging patterns. Day journey lengths were highly variable (460-5,690 m) and the distribution and abundance of fleshy fruit resources explained 81% of the monthly variations in mean day journey length. Keystone habitats for forest frugivores are identified and results are discussed with reference to previous studies on this genus, and the importance of considering keystone habitats and local habitat diversity within the management of forestry concessions in the region. Results are also discussed with reference to the behavioral ecology of the genus Ateles. Copyright (c) 2006 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  9. SPIDER SILK

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    PORAV Viorica

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available The strengthness and toughness of spider fiber and its multifunctional nature is only surpassed in some cases by synthetic high performance fibers. In the world of natural fibers, spider silk has been long time recognized as a wonder fiber for its unique combination of high strength and rupture elongation. Scientists in civil military engineering reveal that the power of biological material (spider silk lies in the geometric configuration of structural protein, and the small cluster of week hydrogen bonds that works together to resist force and dissipate energy. Each spider and each type of silk has a set of mechanical properties optimized for their biological function. Most silks, in particular deagline silk, have exceptional mechanical properties. They exhibit a unique combination of high tensile strength and extensibility (ductility. This enables a silk fiber to absorb a lot of energy before breaking (toughness, the area under a stress- strain curve. A frequent mistake made in the mainstream media is to confuse strength and toughness when comparing silk to other materials. As shown below in detail, weight for weight, silk is stronger than steel, but not as strong as Kevlar. Silk is,however, tougher than both.This paper inform about overview on the today trend in the world of spider silk.

  10. 20 CFR 218.44 - When a remarried widow(er) annuity ends.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-04-01

    ...(er)— (1) Dies; (2) Becomes entitled to an old age benefit under the Social Security Act that is equal...) remarries unless the marriage is to an individual entitled to a retirement, disability, widow(er)'s, father...

  11. 20 CFR 234.47 - Election of the RLS by a widow(er) or parent.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-04-01

    ... 20 Employees' Benefits 1 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Election of the RLS by a widow(er) or parent... RETIREMENT ACT LUMP-SUM PAYMENTS Residual Lump-Sum Payment § 234.47 Election of the RLS by a widow(er) or parent. (a) An RLS cannot be paid if it appears that there are immediate or future monthly survivor...

  12. Survey of black howler (Alouatta pigra) and spider (Ateles geoffroyi) monkeys in the Mayan sites of Calakmul and Yaxchilán, Mexico and Tikal, Guatemala.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Estrada, Alejandro; Luecke, Leandra; Van Belle, Sarie; Barrueta, Emilio; Meda, Marleny Rosales

    2004-01-01

    Surveys of populations of spider and howler monkeys were conducted at the Mayan sites of Calakmul and Yaxchilán, Mexico and Tikal, Guatemala. The forests in which these sites are found are part of the largest landmass of tropical rain forests present in Mesoamerica, encompassing about 4 million ha. Triangulation of monkey vocalization combined with ground surveys was used to determine the presence of howler and spider monkey groups. Howler monkey mean troop size at these sites varied from 6.6+/-2.1 individuals in Yaxchilán to 7.5+/-1.9 in Calakmul to 8.7+/-2.2 in Tikal. Density estimates varied from 12.8 individuals/km(2 )in Yaxchilán to 15.2 individuals/km(2 )in Calakmul to 17.8 individuals/km(2 )in Tikal. Mean spider monkey subgroup size varied from 4.7+/-2.6 individuals in Tikal to 5.6+/-3.0 individuals in Yaxchilán to 7.7+/-3.8 individuals in Calakmul. Spider monkey density varied from 17.0 individuals/km(2 )in Yaxchilán to 17.2 individuals/km(2 )in Calakmul to 56.4 individuals/km(2 )in Tikal. All sightings of both howler and spider monkeys at the three sites were in undisturbed rain forest vegetation and spider monkeys in general were more frequently sighted at higher tree heights than howlers. We discuss the value of further acquiring data on howler and spider monkey populations existing in extensive forest tracts and on the conservation value for both primate species of the forests surrounding the Mayan ruins found in this area of Mesoamerica.

  13. Brown Recluse Spider

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... to a group of spiders commonly known as violin spiders or fiddlebacks. The characteristic fiddle-shaped pattern ... 4-19.1mm) • Color: Golden brown • A dark violin/fiddle shape (see top photo) is located on ...

  14. Movements out of poverty among elderly widows.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dodge, H H

    1995-07-01

    Elderly widows are disproportionately in poverty in the United States. However, past research has also shown that a significant number of poor elderly widows do move out of poverty. This work addresses two questions: What are the characteristics of elderly widows who exited from poverty, and what is the magnitude of the increase in income at the time of exit? An event history approach was taken using monthly data from the Survey of Income and Program Participation. Some of the findings are: living with family members is a strong predictor for the transition out of poverty among poor elderly women; those who are permanently impoverished tend to rely solely on food stamps and SSI; elderly widows from poverty with relatively large increases in income; those who exited due to an increase in pension income or gifts had increased their income significantly more than those who exited through other sources.

  15. Cloning and activity of a novel α-latrotoxin from red-back spider venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graudins, Andis; Little, Michelle J; Pineda, Sandy S; Hains, Peter G; King, Glenn F; Broady, Kevin W; Nicholson, Graham M

    2012-01-01

    The venom of the European black widow spider Latrodectus tredecimguttatus (Theridiidae) contains several high molecular mass (110-140 kDa) neurotoxins that induce neurotransmitter exocytosis. These include a vertebrate-specific α-latrotoxin (α-LTX-Lt1a) responsible for the clinical symptoms of latrodectism and numerous insect-specific latroinsectoxins (LITs). In contrast, little is known about the expression of these toxins in other Latrodectus species despite the fact that envenomation by these spiders induces a similar clinical syndrome. Here we report highly conserved α-LTX, α-LIT and δ-LIT sequence tags in Latrodectus mactans, Latrodectus hesperus and Latrodectus hasselti venoms using tandem mass spectrometry, following bioassay-guided separation of venoms by liquid chromatography. Despite this sequence similarity, we show that the anti-α-LTX monoclonal antibody 4C4.1, raised against α-LTX-Lt1a, fails to neutralize the neurotoxicity of all other Latrodectus venoms tested in an isolated chick biventer cervicis nerve-muscle bioassay. This suggests that there are important structural differences between α-LTXs in theridiid spider venoms. We therefore cloned and sequenced the α-LTX from the Australian red-back spider L. hasselti (α-LTX-Lh1a). The deduced amino acid sequence of the mature α-LTX-Lh1a comprises 1180 residues (∼132kDa) with ∼93% sequence identity with α-LTX-Lt1a. α-LTX-Lh1a is composed of an N-terminal domain and a central region containing 22 ankyrin-like repeats. The presence of two furin cleavage sites, conserved with α-LTX-Lt1a, indicates that α-LTX-Lh1a is derived from the proteolytic cleavage of an N-terminal signal peptide and C-terminal propeptide region. However, we show that α-LTX-Lh1a has key substitutions in the 4C4.1 epitope that explains the lack of binding of the monoclonal antibody. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Funnel-web spider bite

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... page: //medlineplus.gov/ency/article/002844.htm Funnel-web spider bite To use the sharing features on ... the effects of a bite from the funnel-web spider. Male funnel-web spiders are more poisonous ...

  17. Spiders in caves.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mammola, Stefano; Isaia, Marco

    2017-04-26

    World experts of different disciplines, from molecular biology to macro-ecology, recognize the value of cave ecosystems as ideal ecological and evolutionary laboratories. Among other subterranean taxa, spiders stand out as intriguing model organisms for their ecological role of top predators, their unique adaptations to the hypogean medium and their sensitivity to anthropogenic disturbance. As the description of the first eyeless spider ( Stalita taenaria ), an array of papers on subterranean spider biology, ecology and evolution has been published, but a comprehensive review on these topics is still lacking. We provide a general overview of the spider families recorded in hypogean habitats worldwide, we review the different adaptations of hypogean spiders to subterranean life, and we summarize the information gathered so far about their origin, population structure, ecology and conservation status. Finally, we point out the limits of the knowledge we currently have regarding hypogean spiders, aiming to stimulate future research. © 2017 The Author(s).

  18. Snake and Spider Toxins Induce a Rapid Recovery of Function of Botulinum Neurotoxin Paralysed Neuromuscular Junction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elisa Duregotti

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs and some animal neurotoxins (β-Bungarotoxin, β-Btx, from elapid snakes and α-Latrotoxin, α-Ltx, from black widow spiders are pre-synaptic neurotoxins that paralyse motor axon terminals with similar clinical outcomes in patients. However, their mechanism of action is different, leading to a largely-different duration of neuromuscular junction (NMJ blockade. BoNTs induce a long-lasting paralysis without nerve terminal degeneration acting via proteolytic cleavage of SNARE proteins, whereas animal neurotoxins cause an acute and complete degeneration of motor axon terminals, followed by a rapid recovery. In this study, the injection of animal neurotoxins in mice muscles previously paralyzed by BoNT/A or /B accelerates the recovery of neurotransmission, as assessed by electrophysiology and morphological analysis. This result provides a proof of principle that, by causing the complete degeneration, reabsorption, and regeneration of a paralysed nerve terminal, one could favour the recovery of function of a biochemically- or genetically-altered motor axon terminal. These observations might be relevant to dying-back neuropathies, where pathological changes first occur at the neuromuscular junction and then progress proximally toward the cell body.

  19. Snake and Spider Toxins Induce a Rapid Recovery of Function of Botulinum Neurotoxin Paralysed Neuromuscular Junction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duregotti, Elisa; Zanetti, Giulia; Scorzeto, Michele; Megighian, Aram; Montecucco, Cesare; Pirazzini, Marco; Rigoni, Michela

    2015-12-08

    Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs) and some animal neurotoxins (β-Bungarotoxin, β-Btx, from elapid snakes and α-Latrotoxin, α-Ltx, from black widow spiders) are pre-synaptic neurotoxins that paralyse motor axon terminals with similar clinical outcomes in patients. However, their mechanism of action is different, leading to a largely-different duration of neuromuscular junction (NMJ) blockade. BoNTs induce a long-lasting paralysis without nerve terminal degeneration acting via proteolytic cleavage of SNARE proteins, whereas animal neurotoxins cause an acute and complete degeneration of motor axon terminals, followed by a rapid recovery. In this study, the injection of animal neurotoxins in mice muscles previously paralyzed by BoNT/A or /B accelerates the recovery of neurotransmission, as assessed by electrophysiology and morphological analysis. This result provides a proof of principle that, by causing the complete degeneration, reabsorption, and regeneration of a paralysed nerve terminal, one could favour the recovery of function of a biochemically- or genetically-altered motor axon terminal. These observations might be relevant to dying-back neuropathies, where pathological changes first occur at the neuromuscular junction and then progress proximally toward the cell body.

  20. Effects of Latrodectus spider venoms on sensory and motor nerve terminals of muscle spindles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Queiroz, L S; Duchen, L W

    1982-08-23

    The effects of the venoms of the spiders Latrodectus mactans tredecimguttatus (black widow) and Latrodectus mactans hasselti (red back) on sensory nerve terminals in muscle spindles were studied in the mouse. A sublethal dose of venom was injected into tibialis anterior and extensor digitorum longus muscles of one leg. After survival from 30 minutes to 6 weeks muscles were examined in serial paraffin sections impregnated with silver or by electron microscopy. Sensory endings became swollen, some within 30 minutes, while over the next few hours there was progressive degeneration of annulospiral endings. By 24 hours every spindle identified by light or electron microscopy was devoid of sensory terminals. Degenerated nerve endings were taken up into the sarcoplasm of intrafusal muscle fibres. Regeneration of sensory axons began within 24 hours, new incomplete spirals were formed by 5 days and by 1 week annulospiral endings were almost all normal in appearance. Intrafusal motor terminals underwent similar acute degenerative and regenerative changes. These experiments show that intrafusal sensory and motor terminals are equally affected by Latrodectus venoms. Sensory nerve fibres possess a capacity for regeneration equal to that of motor fibres and reinnervate intrafusal muscle fibres close to their original sites of innervation.

  1. 20 CFR 404.346 - Your relationship as wife, husband, widow, or widower based upon a deemed valid marriage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-04-01

    ... widower based upon a deemed valid marriage. 404.346 Section 404.346 Employees' Benefits SOCIAL SECURITY... relationship as wife, husband, widow, or widower based upon a deemed valid marriage. (a) General. If your... explained in § 404.345, you may be eligible for benefits based upon a deemed valid marriage. You will be...

  2. Bat Predation by Spiders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nyffeler, Martin; Knörnschild, Mirjam

    2013-01-01

    In this paper more than 50 incidences of bats being captured by spiders are reviewed. Bat-catching spiders have been reported from virtually every continent with the exception of Antarctica (∼90% of the incidences occurring in the warmer areas of the globe between latitude 30° N and 30° S). Most reports refer to the Neotropics (42% of observed incidences), Asia (28.8%), and Australia-Papua New Guinea (13.5%). Bat-catching spiders belong to the mygalomorph family Theraphosidae and the araneomorph families Nephilidae, Araneidae, and Sparassidae. In addition to this, an attack attempt by a large araneomorph hunting spider of the family Pisauridae on an immature bat was witnessed. Eighty-eight percent of the reported incidences of bat catches were attributable to web-building spiders and 12% to hunting spiders. Large tropical orb-weavers of the genera Nephila and Eriophora in particular have been observed catching bats in their huge, strong orb-webs (of up to 1.5 m diameter). The majority of identifiable captured bats were small aerial insectivorous bats, belonging to the families Vespertilionidae (64%) and Emballonuridae (22%) and usually being among the most common bat species in their respective geographic area. While in some instances bats entangled in spider webs may have died of exhaustion, starvation, dehydration, and/or hyperthermia (i.e., non-predation death), there were numerous other instances where spiders were seen actively attacking, killing, and eating the captured bats (i.e., predation). This evidence suggests that spider predation on flying vertebrates is more widespread than previously assumed. PMID:23516436

  3. Tarantula spider bite

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... spider belongs, contains the largest number of venomous species known. This article is for information only. DO ... Wash the area with soap and water. Place ice (wrapped in a clean cloth or other covering) ...

  4. Space spider crane

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macconochie, Ian O. (Inventor); Mikulas, Martin M., Jr. (Inventor); Pennington, Jack E. (Inventor); Kinkead, Rebecca L. (Inventor); Bryan, Charles F., Jr. (Inventor)

    1988-01-01

    A space spider crane for the movement, placement, and or assembly of various components on or in the vicinity of a space structure is described. As permanent space structures are utilized by the space program, a means will be required to transport cargo and perform various repair tasks. A space spider crane comprising a small central body with attached manipulators and legs fulfills this requirement. The manipulators may be equipped with constant pressure gripping end effectors or tools to accomplish various repair tasks. The legs are also equipped with constant pressure gripping end effectors to grip the space structure. Control of the space spider crane may be achieved either by computer software or a remotely situated human operator, who maintains visual contact via television cameras mounted on the space spider crane. One possible walking program consists of a parallel motion walking program whereby the small central body alternatively leans forward and backward relative to end effectors.

  5. Spider Spinning for Dummies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bird, Richard S.

    Spider spinning is a snappy name for the problem of listing the ideals of a totally acyclic poset in such a way that each ideal is computed from its predecessor in constant time. Such an algorithm is said to be loopless. Our aim in these lectures is to show how to calculate a loopless algorithm for spider spinning. The calculation makes use of the fundamental laws of functional programming and the real purpose of the exercise is to show these laws in action.

  6. Remarriage of war and terror widows: a triadic relationship.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bokek-Cohen, Ya'arit

    2014-01-01

    The article focuses on the intimate relationships of remarried Israeli national widows. An analysis of interviews with 15 widows and 12 of their husbands demonstrated the widows' continuing connection to the deceased husband and thus gives further corroboration to the theory of "'continuing bonds'"; husbands also express their relationship as triadic, with the fallen husband assigned a unique position in the family constellation, albeit not threatening to the new husband. The article concludes with specific guidelines for planning therapeutic programs, e.g., recommending clients to use some symbolic objects, either abstract or concrete, to help widows rebuild their self-identity.

  7. Meaning of bereavement among older African American widows.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodgers, Laura S

    2004-01-01

    In spite of the increase in research on spousal bereavement, researchers have not specifically addressed the impact that ethnicity may have on the bereavement experience. The results of this descriptive phenomenological study increase the understanding of spousal bereavement among older African American widows. Storytelling was at the heart of every participant's description of her bereavement experience. Six themes were identified: awareness of death, care giving, getting through, moving on, changing feelings, and financial security. For nurses to effectively intervene in the lives of bereaved older African American widows, they must consider each widow's culture, heritage, and lived experiences, which can be ascertained through eliciting and listening to the widow's life stories.

  8. Spider Invasion Across the Galaxy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chung-Yue Hui

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The nature of the exotic stellar corpses which reincarnate by consuming their companion is reviewed. Apart from sucking life from their partners, they are actually eating the doomed companions away by their deadly and powerful particle/radiation beams. Such situation resembles that a female “black widow” spider that eats its mate after mating. These celestial zombies are called - Millisecond pulsars (MSPs. In this review article, I will focus on the effort of Fermi Asian Network (FAN in exploring these intricating objects over the last five years. Two special classes of MSPs are particularly striking. Since Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope has started surveying the gamma−ray sky, the population of “black widows” has been boosted. Another dramatic class is so-called “redbacks” (Australian cousin of “black widows” which has just emerged in the last few years. These MSPs provide us with a long-sought missing link in understanding the transition between accretion-powered and rotation-powered systems. The strategy of hunting MSPs through mulitwavelength observations of the unidentified Fermi objects is also reviewed.

  9. Widowed mothers' coresidence with adult children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seltzer, Judith A; Friedman, Esther M

    2014-01-01

    Coresidence is one way that middle-aged offspring assist vulnerable, aging parents. This study investigated which characteristics of widowed mothers and adult children predict coresidence. When coresidence occurred, the analysis explored how individual children's characteristics were associated with their coresidence with the mother. Survey data from adults 53-54 years old in 1993 (N = 2,324) and a random sibling reported about their living situation, other siblings, and their mother, median age 80. Logistic regressions revealed that mothers in poor health, who were older, and who had a daughter were more likely to live with a child. Among coresiding families, results from discrete choice conditional logit models showed that widowed mothers were more likely to live with an unmarried son than an unmarried daughter. Married children were less likely to coreside than unmarried children, but married daughters were more likely than married sons to coreside. Past receipt of financial help from parents was not associated with coresidence. Coresidence was more likely for those with a close relationship with the mother. The discussion considers coresidence as an intergenerational transfer and its importance for the contemporary aging society. Data are needed on characteristics of all offspring to test theories about parent-child relationships.

  10. Financial Planners: Educating Widows in Personal Financial Planning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korb, Brian R.

    2010-01-01

    Widows constitute a growing segment of the U.S. population; however, very little has been done to educate them on the basics of personal financial planning. The creation and implementation of financial planning education programs for widows can help them become more financially literate and free them from anxiety and fear. Interviews with eight…

  11. Company profile: Spider stories.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giuliani, Andrea

    2008-06-01

    SpiderBiotech is a biotech company that has carried out extensive research and development on peptide-based anti-infectives, with five people involved in R&D activities and a strong network of industrial and academic partners experienced in the field of anti-infectives. SpiderBiotech has also created a proprietary library of bioactive peptides and lipopeptides (both linear and dendrimeric) active against bacterial and viral infections. At the moment they have two ongoing projects: the most advanced is focused on the development of a panel of peptide based antibiotics. The second project is related to novel antiviral drugs to treat acyclovir resistant Herpes virus infections.

  12. 20 CFR 404.337 - When does my entitlement to widow's and widower's benefits start and end?

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-04-01

    ... termination month and you meet the other requirements for widow's or widower's benefits. (3) If drug addiction... entitlement periods you may have had, unless you are otherwise disabled without regard to drug addiction or... activity during the reentitlement period (§ 404.1592a) following the end of your trial work period (§ 404...

  13. Tool use in wild spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindshield, Stacy M; Rodrigues, Michelle A

    2009-07-01

    Tool use has been observed in a variety of primate species, including both New and Old World monkeys. However, such reports mainly address the most prodigious tool users and frequently limit discussions of tool-using behavior to a foraging framework. Here, we present observations of novel and spontaneous tool use in wild black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi), where female spider monkeys used detached sticks in a self-directed manner. We introduce factors to explain Ateles tool-using abilities and limitations, and encourage the synthesis of relevant research in order to gain insight into the cognitive abilities of spider monkeys and the evolution of tool-using behaviors in primates.

  14. Widowed parenting self-efficacy scale: A new measure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Teresa P; Yopp, Justin M; Park, Eliza M; Deal, Allison; Biesecker, Barbara B; Rosenstein, Donald L

    2018-04-01

    The authors developed and tested a novel measure of parenting self-efficacy specifically for recently widowed parents of dependent-age children. They tested the scale among 244 recently widowed fathers via an open-access web survey. Exploratory factor analysis identified 3 factors: perception of meeting parenting expectations (α = .88), provision of effective discipline (α = .69), and sense of parental burden (α = .69). Scores on the new scale correlated positively with Kansas Parenting Satisfaction and Psychological Adaptation Scale scores, and negatively with CES-D (depression) and TRIG (grief) scale scores. The resulting 9-item Widowed Parenting Self Efficacy Scale is a promising measure for use in research and clinical settings.

  15. Religiosity influences on bereavement adjustments of older widows in Taiwan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shih, Shaw-Nin; Turale, Sue; Shih, Fu-Jin; Tsai, Jen-Chen

    2010-03-01

    To describe difficulties encountered by older widows in Taiwan and the impact of intrinsic or extrinsic religiosity on their coping strategies during early widowhood. There is very limited information about how Taiwan's widows cope with their bereavement and no studies reporting the relationship between religious beliefs and healthy adjustment during this distressing period. Between-method qualitative and quantitative triangulation was used. Semi-structured interviews were conducted and transcribed data were analysed by critical thematic analysis. Twenty women in Taiwan, >65 years old, (mean = 72.95) were interviewed within three years of being widowed. There were two informant groups: those with intrinsic religious beliefs and those with extrinsic religious beliefs. They all reported intrapersonal and interpersonal problems. Several major coping strategies arose: 'practising positive or negative attitudes for adaptation'; 'using person-focused actions'; and 'taking the initiative or passively seeking help from others or helping others'. Informants with intrinsic religious beliefs reported fewer coping problems by holding positive attitudes and taking multiple actions for adaptation. The extrinsic religious group had more negative adaptation attitudes, such as withdrawal and low self-esteem and practised less faith religious activities in worshipping ancestors, experiencing fatalism and using divination. They reported more coping problems than the intrinsic religious group. Widows in Taiwan have different coping problems and strategies in postbereavement adjustment, affected by their different religious beliefs systems. More research is required to establish the generalisabilty of these findings. Widows in Taiwan need to be assessed for their religious belief systems and how this affects their ability to cope during bereavement. Clinicians should actively provide grief support and encourage new methods of social adaptation, especially with widows with extrinsic

  16. Women Alone: Widows in Third Republic France, 1870-1940

    OpenAIRE

    Lanthier, Michael

    2004-01-01

    An examination of widowhood in Third Republic France intersects with many other key themes of political, social and women's history. The lot of poor widows in the Third Republic was often poverty and hardship, and will lead to a consideration of broader questions regarding several aspects of women's lives, such as work and old age. We will see that widows, like women in general. had very few viable options to choose from when it came to earning a living, and often could not afford the luxury ...

  17. Health care utilization, somatic and mental health distress, and well-being among widowed and non-widowed female survivors of war

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    Background The aim of the study was to assess levels of somatic and mental health distress, well-being, AS WELL AS utilization of primary and specialist health care services among war-related widowed and non-widowed female civilian survivors of war. Methods 100 war-related widowed lone mothers and 106 non-widowed mothers who had experienced the Kosovo war ten years previously participated in the study. Measures of somatic, depressive, post-traumatic stress, anxiety, and grief complaints, subjective well-being, and utilization of health care services during the previous three months were used. Results Compared to non-widowed mothers, widowed lone mothers reported significantly higher levels of somatic, depressive, post-traumatic stress, and anxiety complaints. Further, they reported significantly lower levels of subjective well-being as composed of positive and negative affect and satisfaction with life. More than half of both widowed and non-widowed mothers reported utilization of health care services during the last three months, without significant differences between the groups. However, only three percent of widowed lone mothers and four percent of non-bereaved mothers reported utilization of mental health services during the last three months, despite high levels of mental health distress especially among widowed lone mothers. Among widowed lone mothers, severity of prolonged grief symptoms significantly predicted number of contacts of specialist health care use over and above sociodemographic variables, number of war-related events, and other psychopathology. Conclusion War-related widowed lone mothers suffer from elevated somatic and mental distress even a decade after the war. The tiny proportion of widowed lone mothers in use of mental health services can be seen as a reflection of lack of previous and current mental health services to meet mental health needs of this population. PMID:22578096

  18. Protection of widows and surviving children under the intestate ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Protection of widows and surviving children under the intestate succession laws of Zimbabwe: The case of estates of persons subject to customary law. ... Although in theory, the heir was supposed to administer the estate in the interests of the surviving spouse and children, this has not always been the case. This paper ...

  19. O Nyarwath The Luo Care for Widows _Lako_ and Contemporary ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    O Nyarwath

    treating a widow as property to be inherited by a brother-in-law, and partly being responsible for the spread of ... (Love your kin as you would love yourself, and care for his property and life, as you would for your .... However, to understand the institution requires an appreciation of the Luo conception of marriage and death.

  20. Divorced, separated and widowed female workers in rural Mozambique

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sender, J.; Oya, C.

    2007-01-01

    Compared to other rural women, a high proportion of female wageworkers in rural Mozambique are divorced, separated or widowed. The paper explores the factors underlying this difference and establishes a significant relationship between labour market participation and female divorce or widowhood. The

  1. Application of 3 kinds of practical electromagnetic spiders in electromagnetic spider web

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiang Min

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Electromagnetic spider web the launch circuit has introduced a lot, but in the center position of the utility of the spider generally have 3 kinds of circuits respectively, the use of single-chip microcomputer circuit of the low energy consumption spider by multi-channel transmission, single circuit receiver circuit. Direct use of the 3 channels of the spider and the use of PLC circuit spider, depending on the actual situation were placed.

  2. Spider phylogenomics: untangling the Spider Tree of Life

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicole L. Garrison

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Spiders (Order Araneae are massively abundant generalist arthropod predators that are found in nearly every ecosystem on the planet and have persisted for over 380 million years. Spiders have long served as evolutionary models for studying complex mating and web spinning behaviors, key innovation and adaptive radiation hypotheses, and have been inspiration for important theories like sexual selection by female choice. Unfortunately, past major attempts to reconstruct spider phylogeny typically employing the “usual suspect” genes have been unable to produce a well-supported phylogenetic framework for the entire order. To further resolve spider evolutionary relationships we have assembled a transcriptome-based data set comprising 70 ingroup spider taxa. Using maximum likelihood and shortcut coalescence-based approaches, we analyze eight data sets, the largest of which contains 3,398 gene regions and 696,652 amino acid sites forming the largest phylogenomic analysis of spider relationships produced to date. Contrary to long held beliefs that the orb web is the crowning achievement of spider evolution, ancestral state reconstructions of web type support a phylogenetically ancient origin of the orb web, and diversification analyses show that the mostly ground-dwelling, web-less RTA clade diversified faster than orb weavers. Consistent with molecular dating estimates we report herein, this may reflect a major increase in biomass of non-flying insects during the Cretaceous Terrestrial Revolution 125–90 million years ago favoring diversification of spiders that feed on cursorial rather than flying prey. Our results also have major implications for our understanding of spider systematics. Phylogenomic analyses corroborate several well-accepted high level groupings: Opisthothele, Mygalomorphae, Atypoidina, Avicularoidea, Theraphosoidina, Araneomorphae, Entelegynae, Araneoidea, the RTA clade, Dionycha and the Lycosoidea. Alternatively, our results

  3. Summary statistics for fossil spider species taxonomy

    OpenAIRE

    Penney, David; Dunlop, Jason; Marusik, Yuri

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Spiders (Araneae) are one of the most species-rich orders on Earth today, and also have one of the longest geological records of any terrestrial animal groups, as demonstrated by their extensive fossil record. There are currently around 1150 described fossil spider species, representing 2.6% of all described spiders (i.e. extinct and extant). Data for numbers of fossil and living spider taxa described annually (and various other metrics for the fossil taxa) were compiled from current...

  4. Lethal intragroup aggression by adult male spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, Christina J

    2006-12-01

    I report three cases of coalitionary aggression by adult male black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi) against subadult males within their community on Barro Colorado Island (BCI), Panama. Two of these cases were followed by the disappearance and presumed death of the victim. Similar behavior was recently reported by Valero et al. [in press], who suggested that this behavior may be the result of intense male reproductive competition. Like the single instance they reported, the cases I report all occurred when the operational sex ratio was approximately 1:1, which suggests that intense competition among males for access to reproductively viable females may be a contributing factor. Additionally the very low density of spider monkeys on BCI may play a significant role in the occurrence of this lethal aggression. Large numbers of adult males are not necessary to protect a territorial boundary against neighboring groups, and additional males may act merely as mating competition. (c) 2006 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  5. Spider and burnable poison rod combinations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Edwards, G.T.; Schluderberg, D.C.

    1980-01-01

    An improved design of burnable poison rods and associated spiders used in fuel assemblies of pressurized water power reactor cores, is described. The rods are joined to the spider arms in a manner which is proof against the reactor core environment and yet allows the removal of the rods from the spider simply, swiftly and delicately. (U.K.)

  6. Approach and avoidance in fear of spiders

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rinck, M.; Becker, E.S.

    2007-01-01

    We examined attitudes towards spiders by employing an Approach-Avoidance Task, in which participants respond to pictures by pulling a joystick towards themselves or by pushing it away from themselves. For spider fearfuls, this stimulus–response assignment is either compatible (push spiders away) or

  7. The sexuality experience of older widows in Korea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yun, Okjong; Kim, Miyoung; Chung, Seung Eun

    2014-04-01

    Sexuality plays an important role in elders' lives. However, few studies exist concerning the essential meaning crucial for the overall understanding of sexuality in later life. In this study we explored the experience of what sexuality implied and meant to older widows using the descriptive phenomenological approach. Purposive sampling yielded 10 elderly women who were in sexual relationships. We collected data through in-depth interviews with participants and conducted a thematic analysis. The findings were classified into eight themes: trying to find another side of herself, starting a romantic relationship, invigorating life, displaying femininity, being concerned about the perceptions of others, enjoying sexual freedom, feeling the limit of sexual intimacy, and facing up to reality. The sexual lives of older widows entailed a process of recovering their femininity, self-achievement, and self-esteem, which helped them to live independent lives by developing more active and flexible attitudes.

  8. Biphasic activity of a jumping spider

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okuyama, Toshinori

    2011-01-01

    Individual variation is a ubiquitous and important factor that affects ecological dynamics. This study examined individual variation in the nest-use pattern of the jumping spider Phidippus audax. Although the jumping spider is a diurnal species, field observations in this study revealed that the majority of individuals remained in their nests during the day. An accompanying examination of the hunger level of the spiders revealed that spiders that remained in nests were more starved than those observed outside nests. If spiders actively forage when they are starved, as has been suggested by previous studies, one would expect to see the opposite trend (i.e., spiders that remained in nests are more satiated). Thus, the pattern observed in the field contradicts the known behavioral pattern of the spiders. An individual-based model was used to investigate the behavioral mechanism of the spider and the discrepancy found in the observations. A basic assumption of the model is that spiders possess distinct inactive and active phases (biphasic activity pattern), and transitions between the two phases are regulated by the hunger level of the spider. Data from a laboratory experiment were used to examine the assumptions of the model partially. The model was able to capture patterns observed in the data, suggesting that the pattern of transitions in biphasic activity is an important trait of the foraging behavior of the jumping spider.

  9. Review of the Australian wolf spider genus Venator (Araneae, Lycosidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Framenau, Volker W

    2015-09-11

    Species of the Australian wolf spider genus Venator are reviewed including the type species, V. spenceri Hogg, 1900, from south-eastern Australia and V. immansuetus (Simon, 1909) comb. nov., a common species in south-west Western Australia. Venator marginatus Hogg, 1900 is only known from two female specimens and the genital morphology of this species does not conform to the diagnosis of genus as presented here. Therefore V. marginatus is considered incerta sedis. Venator includes medium-sized (9.0-22 mm body length) wolf spiders of overall brownish colouration, and with a black patch covering the anterior three quarters of the venter. They differ from all other wolf spiders in particular by genitalic characters, namely an elevated atrium of the female epigyne that forms a raised edged against the inverted T-shaped median septum. This edge often corresponds to a retrolateral incision on the tegular apophysis of the male pedipalp. The genus is mainly a representative of the Bassian fauna of the Australian continent where it occurs predominantly in dry sclerophyll forests.

  10. The Legs That Rock the Cradle: Spider Mothers

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Abstract. Spiders are excellent models to study behavioural diversityand evolutionary adaptations in the animal world. This articleexplores the strategies used by spiders to maximise thesurvival of their offspring.

  11. The evolution of sociality in spiders

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lubin, Yael; Bilde, T.

    2007-01-01

    . Anelosimus (Theridiidae) C. Sociality in Spiders: An Evolutionary Dead End? V. Evolution and Maintenance of Sociality in Spiders: Relevant Models A. Kin Selection 1. Kin Recognition 2. Inbreeding and Kin Selection B. Multilevel Selection (Group Selection) C. Ecological Benefits D. Ecological Constraints E......I. Introducing Social Spiders II. Social and Subsocial Species: A Survey of Behavioral Traits III. Inbred Sociality in Spiders A. Cooperation Versus Competition: A Balancing Act B. Do Social Spiders Have Division of Labor? C. Colony Foundation: Propagule Dispersal Versus Fission D. Female......-Biased Colony Sex Ratios: Primary and Operational Sex Ratios E. Mating System: Inbreeding and Its Population-Genetic Consequences F. "Boom and Bust" Colony Dynamics IV. Phylogenetic Relationships Among Social Spider Species A. Common Features of Social Evolution B. Case Studies 1. Stegodyphus (Eresidae) 2...

  12. The Occurrence of Red-Back Spider Latrodectus Hasselti (Araneae: Theridiidae in Bandar Abbas, Southern Port of Iran

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M Shahi

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Background: Due to importance and fatal affect of Red-back spiders, Latrodectus hasselti, a faunistic survey for presence of this spider in Bandar Abbas has been conducted. This animal is considerably the most medically importance spiders all over the world.Methods: Live adult spider specimens were collected from Bandar Abbas town using hand catch conventional method and transferred to the laboratory throughout the summer of 2008. They were identified based on mor­phological characteristics and taxonomic keys and confirmed by some external experts.Results: Results showed the occurrence of the red-back spider, L. hasselti from Bandar Abbas, southern port of Iran. Two female specimens were found. The spider had specific morphological characters including black color with an obvious orange to red longitudinal strip on its upper parts of abdomen. Conclusion: Although the specimens were collected from south of the country, however since the region is an important harbor and port and goods come form different parts of world we assume the possibility of arrival from its origin and native breeding sites of the world. Therefore further investigation is needed to clarify the presence of this species in different parts of Iran.

  13. The plights of widows and widowhood in Nigeria: Reflections on 2 ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The study finds out that the plights of the widows in Nigeria range from poverty and economic deprivation to marginalisation and inhuman treatment in the husband's family, in the church as well as in the society. The paper concluded that the widows themselves have major roles to play in addition to the efforts of the church ...

  14. Tangled in a sparse spider web

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dimitrov, Dimitar Stefanov; Lopardo, Lara; Giribet, Gonzalo

    2012-01-01

    In order to study the tempo and the mode of spider orb web evolution and diversification, we conducted a phylogenetic analysis using six genetic markers along with a comprehensive taxon sample. The present analyses are the first to recover the monophyly of orb-weaving spiders based solely on DNA ...

  15. Debt, shame, and survival: becoming and living as widows in rural Kerala, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohindra, Katia Sarla; Haddad, Slim; Narayana, Delampady

    2012-11-06

    The health and well-being of widows in India is an important but neglected issue of public health and women's rights. We investigate the lives of Indian women as they become widows, focussing on the causes of their husband's mortality and the ensuing consequences of these causes on their own lives and identify the opportunities and challenges that widows face in living healthy and fulfilling lives. Data were collected in a Gram Panchayat (lowest level territorial decentralised unit) in the south Indian state of Kerala. Interviews were undertaken with key informants in order to gain an understanding of local constructions of 'widowhood' and the welfare and social opportunities for widows. Then we conducted semi-structured interviews with widows in the community on issues related to health and vulnerability, enabling us to hear perspectives from widows. Data were analysed for thematic content and emerging patterns. We synthesized our findings with theoretical understandings of vulnerability and Amartya Sen's entitlements theory to develop a conceptual framework. Two salient findings of the study are: first, becoming a widow can be viewed as a type of 'shock' that operates similarly to other 'economic shocks' or 'health shocks' in poor countries except that the burden falls disproportionately on women. Second, widowhood is not a static phenomenon, but rather can be viewed as a multi-phased process with different public health implications at each stage. More research on widows in India and other countries will help to both elucidate the challenges faced by widows and encourage potential solutions. The framework developed in this paper could be used to guide future research on widows.

  16. Debt, shame, and survival: becoming and living as widows in rural Kerala, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohindra Katia

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The health and well-being of widows in India is an important but neglected issue of public health and women’s rights. We investigate the lives of Indian women as they become widows, focussing on the causes of their husband’s mortality and the ensuing consequences of these causes on their own lives and identify the opportunities and challenges that widows face in living healthy and fulfilling lives. Methods Data were collected in a Gram Panchayat (lowest level territorial decentralised unit in the south Indian state of Kerala. Interviews were undertaken with key informants in order to gain an understanding of local constructions of ‘widowhood’ and the welfare and social opportunities for widows. Then we conducted semi-structured interviews with widows in the community on issues related to health and vulnerability, enabling us to hear perspectives from widows. Data were analysed for thematic content and emerging patterns. We synthesized our findings with theoretical understandings of vulnerability and Amartya Sen’s entitlements theory to develop a conceptual framework. Results Two salient findings of the study are: first, becoming a widow can be viewed as a type of ‘shock’ that operates similarly to other ‘economic shocks’ or ‘health shocks’ in poor countries except that the burden falls disproportionately on women. Second, widowhood is not a static phenomenon, but rather can be viewed as a multi-phased process with different public health implications at each stage. Conclusion More research on widows in India and other countries will help to both elucidate the challenges faced by widows and encourage potential solutions. The framework developed in this paper could be used to guide future research on widows.

  17. Debt, shame, and survival: becoming and living as widows in rural Kerala, India

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    Background The health and well-being of widows in India is an important but neglected issue of public health and women’s rights. We investigate the lives of Indian women as they become widows, focussing on the causes of their husband’s mortality and the ensuing consequences of these causes on their own lives and identify the opportunities and challenges that widows face in living healthy and fulfilling lives. Methods Data were collected in a Gram Panchayat (lowest level territorial decentralised unit) in the south Indian state of Kerala. Interviews were undertaken with key informants in order to gain an understanding of local constructions of ‘widowhood’ and the welfare and social opportunities for widows. Then we conducted semi-structured interviews with widows in the community on issues related to health and vulnerability, enabling us to hear perspectives from widows. Data were analysed for thematic content and emerging patterns. We synthesized our findings with theoretical understandings of vulnerability and Amartya Sen’s entitlements theory to develop a conceptual framework. Results Two salient findings of the study are: first, becoming a widow can be viewed as a type of ‘shock’ that operates similarly to other ‘economic shocks’ or ‘health shocks’ in poor countries except that the burden falls disproportionately on women. Second, widowhood is not a static phenomenon, but rather can be viewed as a multi-phased process with different public health implications at each stage. Conclusion More research on widows in India and other countries will help to both elucidate the challenges faced by widows and encourage potential solutions. The framework developed in this paper could be used to guide future research on widows. PMID:23126457

  18. Stigma of tiger attack: Study of tiger-widows from Sundarban Delta, India*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chowdhury, Arabinda N.; Brahma, Arabinda; Mondal, Ranajit; Biswas, Mrinal K.

    2016-01-01

    Aims: Human-tiger conflict (HTC) is a serious public health issue in Sundarban Reserve Forest, India. HTC is a continued concern for significant mortality and morbidity of both human and tiger population. This study examined 49 widows, whose husbands were killed by tigers, in order to explore the cultural stigma related with tiger-killing and consequent discrimination and social rejection. Different psychosocial aspects of community stigma associated with tiger-killings is discussed in the context of local culture. Methods: A mix of both quantitative and qualitative methods was used in this ethnographic study in two mouzas of Sundarban adjacent to Reserve Forest, involving (1) Village Survey for Tiger-widows, (2) In-depth interview of the widows, (3) Focus Group discussions, (4) Participatory mapping and (5) Stigma assessment by using a 28 item stigma scale especially devised for this research. For comparison of stigma-burden snake-bite widows and normal widows were taken from the same community. Results: Tiger-widows showed significantly higher stigma scores on all the clusters (fear, negative feelings, disclosure, discrimination, community attitudes, and spiritual dimension) than from both normal and snake-bite widows. They also showed higher total stigma score (65.9 ± 9.8) than normal widows (35.8 ± 8.0) and snake-bite widows (40.1 ± 7.1) and this difference was highly significant (P tiger-killing. This can be seen in how the tiger-widows’ quality of life has been negatively impacted with a multitude of post-trauma psychological scars, deprivation, abuse and exploitation. Conclusions: The study proposes that administrative strategy for sustainable alternative income generation and conservation policy with integrated participatory forest management may save both human and tiger. A community ecocultural mental health programme addressing to eradicate the cultural stigma related with tiger attack, with environmental awareness may help to reduce the social

  19. Overlooked and underserved: Widowed fathers with dependent-age children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yopp, Justin M; Park, Eliza M; Edwards, Teresa; Deal, Allison; Rosenstein, Donald L

    2015-10-01

    Widowed fathers and their children are at heightened risk for poor coping and maladaptive psychosocial outcomes. This exploratory study is the first to explicitly examine the psychological characteristics of this population of fathers. Some 259 fathers (mean age = 46.81; 90% Caucasian) with dependent-age children and whose wives had died from cancer within the previous five years completed a web-based survey that consisted of demographic questions, the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (CES-D), the Texas Inventory of Grief-Revised (TRIG-R), the Psychological Adaptation Scale (PAS), the Kansas Parental Satisfaction Scale (KPSS), and items assessing perceived parental efficacy. Fathers were found to have elevated depressive (CES-D mean = 22.6) and grief (TRIG-R mean = 70.3) symptomatology, low adaptation (PAS mean = 3.2), and high levels of stress related to their parenting role. They reported being satisfied with their parenting (KPSS mean = 15.8) and having met their own parental expectations. Multivariate analyses revealed an association between father's age and depression (p = fathers reporting greater depressive symptoms. Psychological adaptation was positively correlated with being in a romantic relationship (p = 0.02) and age of oldest child (p = 0.02). The results of our exploratory study suggest that, while widowed fathers perceive themselves as meeting their parental responsibilities, it comes at a substantial psychological cost, with particularly high stress related to being a sole parent. These findings may help guide interventions for this neglected population and underscore the importance of developing targeted therapies and research protocols to address their needs.

  20. Spider phobics more easily see a spider in morphed schematic pictures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Partchev Ivailo

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Individuals with social phobia are more likely to misinterpret ambiguous social situations as more threatening, i.e. they show an interpretive bias. This study investigated whether such a bias also exists in specific phobia. Methods Individuals with spider phobia or social phobia, spider aficionados and non-phobic controls saw morphed stimuli that gradually transformed from a schematic picture of a flower into a schematic picture of a spider by shifting the outlines of the petals until they turned into spider legs. Participants' task was to decide whether each stimulus was more similar to a spider, a flower or to neither object while EEG was recorded. Results An interpretive bias was found in spider phobia on a behavioral level: with the first opening of the petals of the flower anchor, spider phobics rated the stimuli as more unpleasant and arousing than the control groups and showed an elevated latent trait to classify a stimulus as a spider and a response-time advantage for spider-like stimuli. No cortical correlates on the level of ERPs of this interpretive bias could be identified. However, consistent with previous studies, social and spider phobic persons exhibited generally enhanced visual P1 amplitudes indicative of hypervigilance in phobia. Conclusion Results suggest an interpretive bias and generalization of phobia-specific responses in specific phobia. Similar effects have been observed in other anxiety disorders, such as social phobia and posttraumatic stress disorder.

  1. Learned predation risk management by spider mites

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas eHackl

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Predation is a prime selective force shaping prey behavior. Investment in anti-predator behavior is traded-off against time and energy for other fitness-enhancing activities such as foraging or reproduction. To optimize this benefit/cost trade-off, prey should be able to innately and/or by experience modulate their behavior to the level of predation risk. Here, we assessed learned predation risk management in the herbivorous two-spotted spider mite Tetranychus urticae. We exposed spider mites coming from benign (naïve or high immediate predation risk (experienced environments to latent and/or no risk and assessed their site choice, activity and oviposition. Benign environments were characterized by the absence of any predator cues, high immediate risk environments by killed spider mites, physical presence of the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis and associated chemosensory traces left on the surface, and latent risk environments by only predator traces. In the no-choice experiment both naïve and experienced spider mites laid their first egg later on leaves with than without predator traces. Irrespective of predator traces presence/absence, experienced mites laid their first egg earlier than naïve ones did. Naïve spider mites were more active, indicating higher restlessness, and laid fewer eggs on leaves with predator traces, whereas experienced mites were less active and laid similar numbers of eggs on leaves with and without predator traces. In the choice experiment both naïve and experienced spider mites preferentially resided and oviposited on leaves without predator traces but experienced mites were less active than naïve ones. Overall, our study suggests that spider mites experienced with high predation risk behave bolder under latent risk than naïve spider mites. Since predator traces alone do not indicate immediate risk, we argue that the attenuated anti-predator response of experienced spider mites represents adaptive learned

  2. Understanding Spider-Man: Your Everyday Superhero

    OpenAIRE

    Falk, Nicklas; Blomsterberg, Sofie Amalie; Suciu, Alice Sabrina; Pedersen, Mads Peter; Lucas, Vilhelm

    2014-01-01

    This project focuses on the understanding of Spider-Man, and the morals and ethics that lie behind the choices he makes. Through the Dimensions Philosophy & Science/Text & Sign, this understanding is concluded by looking at ethical theories and comic book analysis. Based on the Ultimate Spider-Man comic book series, the aim is to clarify who Spider-Man is and what causes him to act in certain ways; before and after his realization of power. Some theories used to investigate these area...

  3. Almost a spider: a 305-million-year-old fossil arachnid and spider origins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garwood, Russell J; Dunlop, Jason A; Selden, Paul A; Spencer, Alan R T; Atwood, Robert C; Vo, Nghia T; Drakopoulos, Michael

    2016-03-30

    Spiders are an important animal group, with a long history. Details of their origins remain limited, with little knowledge of their stem group, and no insights into the sequence of character acquisition during spider evolution. We describe a new fossil arachnid, Idmonarachne brasierigen. et sp. nov. from the Late Carboniferous (Stephanian,ca 305-299 Ma) of Montceau-les-Mines, France. It is three-dimensionally preserved within a siderite concretion, allowing both laboratory- and synchrotron-based phase-contrast computed tomography reconstruction. The latter is a first for siderite-hosted fossils and has allowed us to investigate fine anatomical details. Although distinctly spider-like in habitus, this remarkable fossil lacks a key diagnostic character of Araneae: spinnerets on the underside of the opisthosoma. It also lacks a flagelliform telson found in the recently recognized, spider-related, Devonian-Permian Uraraneida. Cladistic analysis resolves our new fossil as sister group to the spiders: the spider stem-group comprises the uraraneids and I. brasieri While we are unable to demonstrate the presence of spigots in this fossil, the recovered phylogeny suggests the earliest character to evolve on the spider stem-group is the secretion of silk. This would have been followed by the loss of a flagelliform telson, and then the ability to spin silk using spinnerets. This last innovation defines the true spiders, significantly post-dates the origins of silk, and may be a key to the group's success. The Montceau-les-Mines locality has previously yielded a mesothele spider (with spinnerets). Evidently, Late Palaeozoic spiders lived alongside Palaeozoic arachnid grades which approached the spider condition, but did not express the full suite of crown-group autapomorphies. © 2016 The Authors.

  4. Modelling Crop Biocontrol by Wanderer Spiders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venturino, Ezio; Ghersi, Andrea

    2008-09-01

    We study mathematically the effects some spiders populations have on insects living in and near agroecosystems, where woods and vineyards alternate in the landscape as in the Alta Langa, Piemonte, NW Italy.

  5. Spider's web inspires fibres for industry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dacey, James

    2010-03-01

    Spiders may not be everybody's idea of natural beauty, but nobody can deny the artistry in the webs that they spin, especially when decorated with water baubles in the morning dew. Inspired by this spectacle, a group of researchers in China has mimicked the structural properties of the spider's web to create a fibre for industry that can manipulate water with the same skill and efficiency, writes James Dacey.

  6. Edge effect on weevils and spiders

    OpenAIRE

    R. Horváth; T. Magura; G. Péter; B. Tóthmérész

    2002-01-01

    The edge effect on weevils and spiders was tested along oak forest – meadow transects using sweep-net samples at the Síkfökút Project in Hungary. For spiders the species richness was significantly higher in the forest edge than either in the meadow or the forest interior. For weevils the species richness of the forest edge was higher than that of the meadow, but the difference was not statistically significant whereas the species richness of the forest...

  7. Cognitive bias in spider-phobic children: Comparison of a pictorial and a linguistic spider Stroop.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kindt, M.; Brosschot, J.F.

    1999-01-01

    Examined the relation between spider fear in children and cognitive processing bias toward threatening information. It was investigated whether spider fear in children is related to a cognitive bias for threatening pictures and words. Pictorial and linguistic Stroop stimuli were administered to 28

  8. Seasonality of LH, testosterone and sperm parameters in spider monkey males (Ateles geoffroyi).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cerda-Molina, Ana Lilia; Hernández-López, Leonor; Chavira-Ramírez, Roberto; Cárdenas, Mario; Mondragón-Ceballos, Ricardo

    2009-05-01

    There are no reported data on hormonal fluctuations in black-handed spider monkey males. On previous research about the reproductive physiology of this monkey we have found that during the dry season females show ovulatory estrogen peaks and males present the best quality semen. As part of an ongoing research, in this study we assessed seasonal variations in the concentration of serum luteinizing hormone (LH) and testosterone (T) in three adult spider monkey males to corroborate the seasonal reproductive synchrony. At the same time sperm count and motility were evaluated to search for any correlation between those sperm parameters and hormonal concentrations. We took blood and semen samples (by electroejaculation) of anesthetized males throughout the rainy (June-September) and dry (October-May) months. Our results revealed that T and LH were higher throughout the dry season and there was a significant correlation between T concentration and sperm count. Although higher during the dry season, sperm motility tended to correlate with testosterone and LH levels. These results demonstrated that black-handed spider monkeys have a tendency to show a seasonal pattern of reproduction being the dry season the most likely time to achieve fertilization. (c) 2009 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  9. Discovery of fossil spider remains in Tertiary soft brown coal

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Manewald, U.; Heimer, S.; Volkman, N.

    1986-11-01

    A fossil spring spider (Salticidae) is described, discovered in a 1 cm/sup 3/ void of a lower Miocene brown coal seam in Bitterfeld (GDR). The spider's hair, chelicerae and legs are well preserved. A photograph of the cephalothorax is provided. In the same coal seam egg cocoons of other spiders were also found and are shown in two further microscopic photographs. Conclusions are drawn on spider fossilization, sedimentation and paleoenvironment of the Miocene coal seam 8 references.

  10. SPIDER OR NO SPIDER? NEURAL CORRELATES OF SUSTAINED AND PHASIC FEAR IN SPIDER PHOBIA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Münsterkötter, Anna Luisa; Notzon, Swantje; Redlich, Ronny; Grotegerd, Dominik; Dohm, Katharina; Arolt, Volker; Kugel, Harald; Zwanzger, Peter; Dannlowski, Udo

    2015-09-01

    Processes of phasic fear responses to threatening stimuli are thought to be distinct from sustained, anticipatory anxiety toward an unpredicted, potential threat. There is evidence for dissociable neural correlates of phasic fear and sustained anxiety. Whereas increased amygdala activity has been associated with phasic fear, sustained anxiety has been linked with activation of the bed nucleus of stria terminalis (BNST), anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), and the insula. So far, only a few studies have focused on the dissociation of neural processes related to both phasic and sustained fear in specific phobia. We suggested that first, conditions of phasic and sustained fear would involve different neural networks and, second, that overall neural activity would be enhanced in a sample of phobic compared to nonphobic participants. Pictures of spiders and neutral stimuli under conditions of either predicted (phasic) or unpredicted (sustained) fear were presented to 28 subjects with spider phobia and 28 nonphobic control subjects during functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scanning. Phobic patients revealed significantly higher amygdala activation than controls under conditions of phasic fear. Sustained fear processing was significantly related to activation in the insula and ACC, and phobic patients showed a stronger activation than controls of the BNST and the right ACC under conditions of sustained fear. Functional connectivity analysis revealed enhanced connectivity of the BNST and the amygdala in phobic subjects. Our findings support the idea of distinct neural correlates of phasic and sustained fear processes. Increased neural activity and functional connectivity in these networks might be crucial for the development and maintenance of anxiety disorders. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  11. A comprehensive look at phobic fear in inhibition of return: Phobia-related spiders as cues and targets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berdica, Elisa; Gerdes, Antje B M; Alpers, Georg W

    2017-03-01

    The so called inhibition of return (IOR) effect refers to a bias against returning attention to a location which was previously investigated. Because emotionally salient material has the capacity to capture and hold attention it has been suggested that this material may disrupt this otherwise impressively stable phenomenon. 40 students participated in the experiment. Black and white schematic drawings of a spider, a butterfly or a cross were used as cues. A black dot, a spider, a butterfly or a cross were used as targets. Participants were required to press a key whenever the target picture appeared. Subsequently, they rated the pictures on valence and arousal. Results showed that the IOR effect remained stable and did not diminish with either fear-related cues or fear-related targets. This data adds strong arguments for the stability of IOR. The spider fearful participants were not diagnosed patients. They still meet the criteria for spider fear but follow-up studies should pursue the same question with a specific focus on participants' levels of anxiety. This study is a contribution to the debate on how emotions affect or do not affect attentional processes such as the IOR. IOR appears to be a robust phenomenon and the emotional valence of neither the cue nor the emotional valence of the target can override it. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. EVOLUTIONARY TRAJECTORIES OF ULTRACOMPACT 'BLACK WIDOW' PULSARS WITH VERY LOW MASS COMPANIONS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Benvenuto, O. G.; De Vito, M. A. [Facultad de Ciencias Astronomicas y Geofisicas, Universidad Nacional de La Plata and Instituto de Astrofisica de La Plata (IALP), CCT-CONICET-UNLP, Paseo del Bosque S/N (B1900FWA), La Plata (Argentina); Horvath, J. E., E-mail: obenvenu@fcaglp.unlp.edu.ar, E-mail: adevito@fcaglp.unlp.edu.ar, E-mail: foton@astro.iag.usp.br [Instituto de Astronomia, Geofisica e Ciencias Atmosfericas, Universidade de Sao Paulo, R. do Matao 1226 (05508-090), Cidade Universitaria, Sao Paulo, SP (Brazil)

    2012-07-10

    The existence of millisecond pulsars with planet-mass companions in close orbits is challenging from the stellar evolution point of view. We calculate in detail the evolution of binary systems self-consistently, including mass transfer, evaporation, and irradiation of the donor by X-ray feedback, demonstrating the existence of a new evolutionary path leading to short periods and compact donors as required by the observations of PSR J1719-1438. We also point out the alternative of an exotic nature of the companion planet-mass star.

  13. Aging-related reproductive decline in the male spider monkey (Ateles geoffroyi).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernández-López, Leonor; Cerda-Molina, Ana L; Díaz-Díaz, Guillermo; Chavira-Bolaños, Roberto; Mondragón-Ceballos, Ricardo

    2012-04-01

    It is unknown whether male black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi) undergo a reproductive decline as they age. The purpose of this work was investigating whether serum testosterone and semen quality decrease with age in these primates as occur in other species. In this study, we assessed age variations in the concentration of serum testosterone, sperm counts, and motility in nine males. We took serum blood samples and semen samples by electroejaculation of anesthetized males throughout the fertile season. We found that testosterone levels and total sperm concentration, motile, progressive, fast linearly moving, medium linearly moving, slow linearly moving and immotile sperm significantly decreased with age. Our results show that a reproductive decline occurs in male spider monkeys because of a decrease in sperm counts. These results are similar to those of rhesus monkeys and men, despite the phylogenetic distance between New and Old World primates. © 2012 John Wiley & Sons A/S.

  14. Sex-specific kleptoparasitic foraging in ant-eating spiders

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Martisová, Martina; Bilde, T.; Pekar, Stano

    2009-01-01

    . To investigate this hypothesis, we studied the effect of sex and life history stage on the frequency of kleptoparasitism in ant-eating spiders of the genus Zodarion in the field. These spiders use a special capture technique involving a quick attack on an ant that is left unguarded by spiders for several minutes...

  15. Acute Generalized Exanthematous Pustulosis (AGEP Triggered by a Spider Bite

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Makris

    2009-01-01

    Discussion: A spider bite may represent a possible causative factor of AGEP. A spider's venom contains sphingomyelinase that stimulates the release of IL8 and GM-CSF, which are involved in AGEP pathogenesis. Whether or not the con-current use of antibiotics has an effect in AGEP appearance when combined with a spider's venom, cannot be excluded.

  16. Natural Materials and Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-03-07

    Black Widow MA Gland 500 MHz 800 MHz τc = 7.06 x 10-10 s τc = 1.25 x 10-9 s [m m 2 /s ] Diffusion Weighted Image of Black Widow & 1H...distribution is unlimited 19 H/D Amide Exchange: Black Widow Major Glands NH/ND Black Widow Major Glands 90:10 H2O:D2O 99.9% D2O (5 mins.) Gly Hα...Narrowing silk focus to Spider and Silkworm only. Reducing cellulose footprint. • Biomolecular assembly/Programmable Materials – BRI program,

  17. Levirate marriage amongst the Hebrews and widow's inheritance amongst the Yoruba: A comparative investigation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samson O. Olanisebe

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available In ancient Israel, even though widowhood was not something people were praying for, when it came, the people involved were protected by the legal and customary structures already in place. One of those structures in the Old Testament is the institution of the levirate marriage where the right and the possession due to a widow without a son for her late husband could be protected and appropriated. A similar custom was also found amongst the pre-colonial Yoruba people through the widow�s inheritance which guarantees the welfare of the widow after the demise of her husband. However, these structures have been dismantled by Christianity, thereby exposing the majority of present-day widows to untold hardship. This article, therefore, through historical, descriptive and comparative methods, examines the customs of the levirate marriage and widow�s inheritance in the two cultures, ascertains how effective they were in addressing the welfare and protection of the rights and privileges of widows and recommends how the church can better see to the welfare of the widows in the society.

  18. Edge effect on weevils and spiders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Horváth

    2002-05-01

    Full Text Available The edge effect on weevils and spiders was tested along oak forest – meadow transects using sweep-net samples at the Síkfökút Project in Hungary. For spiders the species richness was significantly higher in the forest edge than either in the meadow or the forest interior. For weevils the species richness of the forest edge was higher than that of the meadow, but the difference was not statistically significant whereas the species richness of the forest interior was significantly lower than that of the forest edge and the meadow. The composition of the spider assemblage of the edge was more similar to the forest, while the composition of weevils in the edge was more similar to the meadow. Our results based on two invertebrate groups operating on different trophic levels suggest that there is a significant edge effect for the studied taxa resulting in higher species richness in the edge.

  19. Disentangling the phylogenetic and ecological components of spider phenotypic variation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonçalves-Souza, Thiago; Diniz-Filho, José Alexandre Felizola; Romero, Gustavo Quevedo

    2014-01-01

    An understanding of how the degree of phylogenetic relatedness influences the ecological similarity among species is crucial to inferring the mechanisms governing the assembly of communities. We evaluated the relative importance of spider phylogenetic relationships and ecological niche (plant morphological variables) to the variation in spider body size and shape by comparing spiders at different scales: (i) between bromeliads and dicot plants (i.e., habitat scale) and (ii) among bromeliads with distinct architectural features (i.e., microhabitat scale). We partitioned the interspecific variation in body size and shape into phylogenetic (that express trait values as expected by phylogenetic relationships among species) and ecological components (that express trait values independent of phylogenetic relationships). At the habitat scale, bromeliad spiders were larger and flatter than spiders associated with the surrounding dicots. At this scale, plant morphology sorted out close related spiders. Our results showed that spider flatness is phylogenetically clustered at the habitat scale, whereas it is phylogenetically overdispersed at the microhabitat scale, although phylogenic signal is present in both scales. Taken together, these results suggest that whereas at the habitat scale selective colonization affect spider body size and shape, at fine scales both selective colonization and adaptive evolution determine spider body shape. By partitioning the phylogenetic and ecological components of phenotypic variation, we were able to disentangle the evolutionary history of distinct spider traits and show that plant architecture plays a role in the evolution of spider body size and shape. We also discussed the relevance in considering multiple scales when studying phylogenetic community structure.

  20. The path to the nest of spiders The path to the nest of spiders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eliane Luz Bayer

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available Italo Calvino writes in his preface to The Path to the Nest of Spiders that the novel answers to the "ripeness of the time" since ht wrote it after wartime, a period when everyone had a tale to tell. He tells us that this is a story in which iobody is a hero and nobody has the class consciousness necessary to unify them in the struggle. Calvino acknowledges that it was difficult to conciliate his experiences with the postwar literary movement which he calls Neo-expresSionism, a term which, he thinks, describes better Italian Neo-realism. This is a book with a full realistic depictior of the incongruousness of the whole situation, showing rumen beings driven by loneliness, aggressiveness, unfulfilment and failure to meet, their nerves frayed by the War. It reveals human beings in their weaknesses, subjected to deterministic fates changing roles according to circumstance. Partisans shift to the Nazi side and inform on their f rmer allies and vice-versa, being later chased in revenge. The novel has as its setting Italy under Fascism and unde German occupation, the Italian people being divided betw en the fascists of the "Black Brigade" and the "Partisa4s" who belonged to the Resistance. Although this is a pOlitical book, it has universal appeal. At the same time that it livens up historical facts about the period, it moves our feelings. Calvino's book is about World War II as it is viewed and felt by a small outcast, Pin, who makes considerable efforts to be accepted and understood by adults. In his daily life Pinsuffers the consequences Of the war. His aggressive disposition reflects the environment which he has been brought up in: since he was born, his country has been at war. Besides that, his only sister is a whore, whom he hates and despises. Italo Calvino writes in his preface to The Path to the Nest of Spiders that the novel answers to the "ripeness of the time" since ht wrote it after wartime, a period when everyone had a tale to tell

  1. Checklist of spider fauna of FR Peshawar, FATA, Pakistan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. Perveen

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available The spiders are known as poisonous arthropods, but they also act as the predator or biological pests control agent. Their 23 species belonging to 15 genera and 09 families were reported during 2009-2010 from FR Peshawar, FATA, Pakistan. The reported families Clubionidae, Scytodidae and Sprassidae covered each 4%, Araneidae, Gnaphosidae, Pholicidae and Salticidae each 9%, Thomisidae 13% and Lycosidae 43% biodiversity of spiders of FATA. However, the largest spider collected was huntsman, Isopoda tuhodnigra (Barrion with total body length 15.80+-0.83 mm. Moreover, the smallest spider was wolf spider, Pardosa birmanica (Simon with total body length 4.20+-1.30 mm. Further, the crab spiders, Thomisus pugilis (Stoliczka, T. spectabilis (Doleschall and Diaea evanida (Thorell were the most colorful species belonging to family Thomisidae. A detail study is required for further exploration of spider fauna of FATA.

  2. Poisonous Spiders: Bites, Symptoms, and Treatment; an Educational Review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rahmani, Farzad; Banan Khojasteh, Seyed Mahdi; Ebrahimi Bakhtavar, Hanieh; Rahmani, Farnaz; Shahsavari Nia, Kavous; Faridaalaee, Gholamreza

    2014-01-01

    More than 40,000 species of spiders have been identified in the world. Spider bites is a common problem among people, however few of them are harmful but delay in treatment can cause death. Since the spider bites are risk full to human, they should be taken seriously, especially in endemic areas. Our objective in this review was to study about poisonous spiders and find out treatments of them. Therefore, we collected related articles from PubMed database and Google Scholar. Three important syndromes caused by spider bites are loxoscelism, latrodectism and funnel web spider syndrome. Many treatments are used but much more studies should have done to decrease the mortality. In this review, we describes different venomous spiders according to their appearance, symptoms after their bites and available treatments.

  3. Poisonous Spiders: Bites, Symptoms, and Treatment; an Educational Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Farzad Rahmani

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available More than 40,000 species of spiders have been identified in the world. Spider bites is a common problem among people, however few of them are harmful but delay in treatment can cause death. Since the spider bites are risk full to human, they should be taken seriously, especially in endemic areas. Our objective in this review was to study about poisonous spiders and find out treatments of them. Therefore we collected related articles from PubMed database and Google Scholar. Three important syndromes caused by spider bites are loxoscelism, latrodectism and funnel web spider syndrome. Many treatments are used but much more studies should have done to decrease the mortality. In this review, we describes different venomous spiders according to their appearance, symptoms after their bites and available treatments. 

  4. Uncovering the structure-function relationship in spider silk

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yarger, Jeffery L.; Cherry, Brian R.; van der Vaart, Arjan

    2018-03-01

    All spiders produce protein-based biopolymer fibres that we call silk. The most studied of these silks is spider dragline silk, which is very tough and relatively abundant compared with other types of spider silks. Considerable research has been devoted to understanding the relationship between the molecular structure and mechanical properties of spider dragline silks. In this Review, we overview experimental and computational studies that have provided a wealth of detail at the molecular level on the highly conserved repetitive core and terminal regions of spider dragline silk. We also discuss the role of the nanocrystalline β-sheets and amorphous regions in determining the properties of spider silk fibres, endowing them with strength and elasticity. Additionally, we outline imaging techniques and modelling studies that elucidate the importance of the hierarchical structure of silk fibres at the molecular level. These insights into structure-function relationships can guide the reverse engineering of spider silk to enable the production of superior synthetic fibres.

  5. Programming spiders, bots, and aggregators in Java

    CERN Document Server

    Heaton, Jeff

    2006-01-01

    The content and services available on the web continue to be accessed mostly through direct human control. But this is changing. Increasingly, users rely on automated agents that save them time and effort by programmatically retrieving content, performing complex interactions, and aggregating data from diverse sources. Programming Spiders, Bots, and Aggregators in Java teaches you how to build and deploy a wide variety of these agents-from single-purpose bots to exploratory spiders to aggregators that present a unified view of information from multiple user accounts. You will quickly build on

  6. Fish Predation by Semi-Aquatic Spiders: A Global Pattern

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nyffeler, Martin; Pusey, Bradley J.

    2014-01-01

    More than 80 incidences of fish predation by semi-aquatic spiders – observed at the fringes of shallow freshwater streams, rivers, lakes, ponds, swamps, and fens – are reviewed. We provide evidence that fish predation by semi-aquatic spiders is geographically widespread, occurring on all continents except Antarctica. Fish predation by spiders appears to be more common in warmer areas between 40° S and 40° N. The fish captured by spiders, usually ranging from 2–6 cm in length, are among the most common fish taxa occurring in their respective geographic area (e.g., mosquitofish [Gambusia spp.] in the southeastern USA, fish of the order Characiformes in the Neotropics, killifish [Aphyosemion spp.] in Central and West Africa, as well as Australian native fish of the genera Galaxias, Melanotaenia, and Pseudomugil). Naturally occurring fish predation has been witnessed in more than a dozen spider species from the superfamily Lycosoidea (families Pisauridae, Trechaleidae, and Lycosidae), in two species of the superfamily Ctenoidea (family Ctenidae), and in one species of the superfamily Corinnoidea (family Liocranidae). The majority of reports on fish predation by spiders referred to pisaurid spiders of the genera Dolomedes and Nilus (>75% of observed incidences). There is laboratory evidence that spiders from several more families (e.g., the water spider Argyroneta aquatica [Cybaeidae], the intertidal spider Desis marina [Desidae], and the ‘swimming’ huntsman spider Heteropoda natans [Sparassidae]) predate fish as well. Our finding of such a large diversity of spider families being engaged in fish predation is novel. Semi-aquatic spiders captured fish whose body length exceeded the spiders’ body length (the captured fish being, on average, 2.2 times as long as the spiders). Evidence suggests that fish prey might be an occasional prey item of substantial nutritional importance. PMID:24940885

  7. Social structure vs. self rehabilitation: IDF widows forming an intimate relationship in the sociopolitical discourse

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Smadar Ben-Asher

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available The public discourse pertaining to IDF (Israel Defense Forces widows, especially those cohabiting with a partner out of wedlock, is presented by means of a study that analyzes competing representations in the sociopolitical discourse in Israeli society. The social representations give expression to collectivistrepublican perceptions that accord centrality to the widows’ national role of preserving the country’s collective memory in exchange for monetary compensation, and individualist-liberal representations that accord centrality to the individual and do not dictate her conduct in accordance with the role designated for her by the state. The present study analyzed the Internet talkback discourse that appeared in response to a media report presenting the demands of IDF widows for the state’s continuedacknowledgement of its obligation toward them, even after they form a new intimate relationship. The study’s findings corroborate the existence of hegemonic representations that reflect a republicannationalist discourse advocating that the widows should serve the national values of commemoration in order to gain state recognition, alongside emancipated representations of a liberal discourse that accords centrality to the widow as an individual and views her rehabilitation as a private and personal matter. The study also found polemical representations that confront the two perceptions, which can no longer coexist. The study found that respondents belonging to the liberal-individualist group will beinclined to support recognition and state support for the widows irrespective of their personal status, whereas respondents belonging to the republican-collectivist group will be inclined to precondition state recognition and support for the widows on their personal status.

  8. Spiders Tune Glue Viscosity to Maximize Adhesion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amarpuri, Gaurav; Zhang, Ci; Diaz, Candido; Opell, Brent D; Blackledge, Todd A; Dhinojwala, Ali

    2015-11-24

    Adhesion in humid conditions is a fundamental challenge to both natural and synthetic adhesives. Yet, glue from most spider species becomes stickier as humidity increases. We find the adhesion of spider glue, from five diverse spider species, maximizes at very different humidities that matches their foraging habitats. By using high-speed imaging and spreading power law, we find that the glue viscosity varies over 5 orders of magnitude with humidity for each species, yet the viscosity at maximal adhesion for each species is nearly identical, 10(5)-10(6) cP. Many natural systems take advantage of viscosity to improve functional response, but spider glue's humidity responsiveness is a novel adaptation that makes the glue stickiest in each species' preferred habitat. This tuning is achieved by a combination of proteins and hygroscopic organic salts that determines water uptake in the glue. We therefore anticipate that manipulation of polymer-salts interaction to control viscosity can provide a simple mechanism to design humidity responsive smart adhesives.

  9. The aerodynamic signature of running spiders.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jérôme Casas

    Full Text Available Many predators display two foraging modes, an ambush strategy and a cruising mode. These foraging strategies have been classically studied in energetic, biomechanical and ecological terms, without considering the role of signals produced by predators and perceived by prey. Wolf spiders are a typical example; they hunt in leaf litter either using an ambush strategy or by moving at high speed, taking over unwary prey. Air flow upstream of running spiders is a source of information for escaping prey, such as crickets and cockroaches. However, air displacement by running arthropods has not been previously examined. Here we show, using digital particle image velocimetry, that running spiders are highly conspicuous aerodynamically, due to substantial air displacement detectable up to several centimetres in front of them. This study explains the bimodal distribution of spider's foraging modes in terms of sensory ecology and is consistent with the escape distances and speeds of cricket prey. These findings may be relevant to the large and diverse array of arthropod prey-predator interactions in leaf litter.

  10. Envenomation caused by Latrodectus geometricus in São Paulo state, Brazil: a case report

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ramb Almeida

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Widow spiders (Latrodectus spp., also known as "black widows", have a worldwide distribution and can cause latrodectism. To the best of our knowledge, in Brazil, only one case of Latrodectus geometricus (Koch, 1841 envenomation in a human has been reported. The aim of the present report is to describe a spider bite caused by Latrodectus geometricus in a patient who lives in Paranapanema, São Paulo state, Brazil.

  11. Change and Continuity in Kin-Based Support Systems for Widows ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Change and Continuity in Kin-Based Support Systems for Widows and Orphans among the Luo in Western Kenya. Erick Otieno Nyambedha. Abstract. No Abstract Available African Sociological Review 8, (1), 2004, pp. 139-153. Full Text: EMAIL FREE FULL TEXT EMAIL FREE FULL TEXT · DOWNLOAD FULL TEXT ...

  12. The Paradox of Cultural Self-Representation in Paule Marshall's "Praisesong for the Widow"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ibironke, Olabode

    2004-01-01

    In this paper, I examine how Paule Marshall's "Praisesong For The Widow", fictionalizes "migrations of the subject". I argue that "Praisesong" explores the threshold between displacement, exile and prodigality. The paradox elaborated in this analysis is located precisely in how self-questioning ends up in self-affirmation; how conceptualisations…

  13. 139 Patriarchy, Marriage and the Rights of Widows in Nigeria Austin ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Ike Odimegwu

    “what aspects of the tradition foster the violation of widows' rights and in .... or tradition. Marriage. There is a strong relationship between circumstances of a woman's marriage and her experiences in the case of the death of her husband. In Nigeria ... Christianity and African Traditional Religion) in the Nigerian society and ...

  14. A novel neurotoxin from venom of the spider, Brachypelma albopilosum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhong, Yunhua; Song, Bo; Mo, Guoxiang; Yuan, Mingwei; Li, Hongli; Wang, Ping; Yuan, Minglong; Lu, Qiumin

    2014-01-01

    Spiders have evolved highly selective toxins for insects. There are many insecticidal neurotoxins in spider venoms. Although a large amount of work has been done to focus on neurotoxicity of spider components, little information, which is related with effects of spider toxins on tumor cell proliferation and cytotoxicity, is available for Brachypelma albopilosum venom. In this work, a novel spider neurotoxin (brachyin) was identified and characterized from venoms of the spider, Brachypelma albopilosum. Brachyin is composed of 41 amino acid residues with the sequence of CLGENVPCDKDRPNCCSRYECLEPTGYGWWYASYYCYKKRS. There are six cysteines in this sequence, which form three disulfided bridges. The serine residue at the C-terminus is amidated. Brachyin showed strong lethal effects on American cockroaches (Periplaneta americana) and Tenebrio molitor (common mealbeetle). This neurotoxin also showed significant analgesic effects in mice models including abdominal writhing induced by acetic acid and formalin-induced paw licking tests. It was interesting that brachyin exerted marked inhibition on tumor cell proliferation.

  15. A novel neurotoxin from venom of the spider, Brachypelma albopilosum.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yunhua Zhong

    Full Text Available Spiders have evolved highly selective toxins for insects. There are many insecticidal neurotoxins in spider venoms. Although a large amount of work has been done to focus on neurotoxicity of spider components, little information, which is related with effects of spider toxins on tumor cell proliferation and cytotoxicity, is available for Brachypelma albopilosum venom. In this work, a novel spider neurotoxin (brachyin was identified and characterized from venoms of the spider, Brachypelma albopilosum. Brachyin is composed of 41 amino acid residues with the sequence of CLGENVPCDKDRPNCCSRYECLEPTGYGWWYASYYCYKKRS. There are six cysteines in this sequence, which form three disulfided bridges. The serine residue at the C-terminus is amidated. Brachyin showed strong lethal effects on American cockroaches (Periplaneta americana and Tenebrio molitor (common mealbeetle. This neurotoxin also showed significant analgesic effects in mice models including abdominal writhing induced by acetic acid and formalin-induced paw licking tests. It was interesting that brachyin exerted marked inhibition on tumor cell proliferation.

  16. Persistent Complex Bereavement Disorder and Culture: Early and Prolonged Grief in Nepali Widows.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Jane; Tol, Wietse A; Shrestha, Abina; Kafle, Hari Maya; Rayamajhi, Rajin; Luitel, Nagendra P; Thapa, Lily; Surkan, Pamela J

    2017-01-01

    Persistent complex bereavement disorder (PCBD) in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), has not been well studied in socioculturally diverse populations. Thus, this qualitative study examined (a) how widows in Nepal understand grief, (b) whether a local construct of PCBD exists, and (c) its comparability with the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), terminology. Using an adapted Explanatory Model Interview Catalogue (EMIC) framework, semistructured interviews with 25 widows and 12 key informants, as well as three focus-group discussions (n = 20), were conducted between October 2014 and April 2015. Through an inductive grounded theory-based approach, we used the constant comparative method, iteratively coding transcripts to identify themes and patterns in the data. Also, we created two lists of grief responses, one of early reactions and another all reactions to grief, based on the frequency of mention. No single term for grief was reported. Widows reported a local construct of PCBD, which was broadly compatible with DSM-5 terminology but with important variation reflecting societal influence. Surviving torture during conflict, economic and family stressors, and discrimination were mentioned as important determinants that prolong and complicate grief. Suicidal ideation was common, with about 31% and 62% of widows reporting past-year and lifetime suicidality, respectively. Findings may not be generalizable to all Nepali widows; participants were recruited from a non-governmental organization, from Kathmandu and its neighboring districts, and were primarily of reproductive age. While PCBD symptoms proposed in DSM-5 were mentioned as relevant by study participants, some components may need adaptation for use in non-Western settings, such as Nepal.

  17. Black to Black

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Langkjær, Michael Alexander

    2012-01-01

    Pop musicians performing in black stage costume take advantage of cultural traditions relating to matters black. Stylistically, black is a paradoxical color: although a symbol of melancholy, pessimism, and renunciation, black also expresses minimalist modernity and signifies exclusivity (as is hi...... suggested that appreciation of the highly personal motives of both Siouxsie Sioux and Janelle Monáe in wearing black may be achieved via analogies with the minimalist sublime of American artists Frank Stella’s and Ad Reinhardt’s black canvasses.......Pop musicians performing in black stage costume take advantage of cultural traditions relating to matters black. Stylistically, black is a paradoxical color: although a symbol of melancholy, pessimism, and renunciation, black also expresses minimalist modernity and signifies exclusivity (as...... is hinted by Rudyard Kipling’s illustration of ‘The [Black] Cat That Walked by Himself’ in his classic children’s tale). It was well understood by uniformed Anarchists, Fascists and the SS that there is an assertive presence connected with the black-clad figure. The paradox of black’s abstract elegance...

  18. Stress/Strain Characteristics and Biochemical Correlates of Spider Silks

    Science.gov (United States)

    1999-10-18

    do aminoacid analysis on silk samples measured and collected from the same spiders. Background to reports 1 and 2: Dr Kaplan left Natick during the...properties (shown by us) as well as measurable effects on silk aminoacid compositions (C Craig pers. comm). Thus after initial samples of silks from a...variability could be the state of nutrition of the spider. Starvation has been shown to have an effect on the web- geometry in orb-weaving spiders 2; and

  19. Spider silk: a novel optical fibre for biochemical sensing

    OpenAIRE

    Hey Tow, Kenny; Chow, Desmond; Vollrath, Fritz; Dicaire, Isabelle; Gheysens, Tom; Thévenaz, Luc

    2015-01-01

    Whilst being thoroughly used in the textile industry and biomedical sector, silk has not yet been exploited for fibre optics-based sensing although silk fibres directly obtained from spiders can guide light and have shown early promises to being sensitive to some solvents. In this communication, a pioneering optical fibre sensor based on spider silk is reported, demonstrating for the first time the use of spider silk as an optical fibre sensor to detect polar solvents such as water, ammonia a...

  20. Reconstructing web evolution and spider diversification in the molecular era.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blackledge, Todd A; Scharff, Nikolaj; Coddington, Jonathan A; Szüts, Tamas; Wenzel, John W; Hayashi, Cheryl Y; Agnarsson, Ingi

    2009-03-31

    The evolutionary diversification of spiders is attributed to spectacular innovations in silk. Spiders are unique in synthesizing many different kinds of silk, and using silk for a variety of ecological functions throughout their lives, particularly to make prey-catching webs. Here, we construct a broad higher-level phylogeny of spiders combining molecular data with traditional morphological and behavioral characters. We use this phylogeny to test the hypothesis that the spider orb web evolved only once. We then examine spider diversification in relation to different web architectures and silk use. We find strong support for a single origin of orb webs, implying a major shift in the spinning of capture silk and repeated loss or transformation of orb webs. We show that abandonment of costly cribellate capture silk correlates with the 2 major diversification events in spiders (1). Replacement of cribellate silk by aqueous silk glue may explain the greater diversity of modern orb-weaving spiders (Araneoidea) compared with cribellate orb-weaving spiders (Deinopoidea) (2). Within the "RTA clade," which is the sister group to orb-weaving spiders and contains half of all spider diversity, >90% of species richness is associated with repeated loss of cribellate silk and abandonment of prey capture webs. Accompanying cribellum loss in both groups is a release from substrate-constrained webs, whether by aerially suspended webs, or by abandoning webs altogether. These behavioral shifts in silk and web production by spiders thus likely played a key role in the dramatic evolutionary success and ecological dominance of spiders as predators of insects.

  1. The canopy spiders (Araneae of the floodplain forest in Leipzig

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Otto, Stefan

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available The canopy spiders of the floodplain forest in Leipzig have become a focus of ecological studies in recent years. In 2006 we sampled 30 tree canopies in the ‘Burgaue’ nature reserve with pyrethrum knock-down fogging, recording 502 adult spiders belonging to 48 species and 11 families. Based on these data and the results of a previous fogging study, the studied spider community was dominated by forest and forest-edge species with a preference for the shrub and canopy strata as well as by spiders of the web spider feeding guild. The community structure was typical for arboreal spider communities from northern temperate forests but very different from communities in the tropics. Species richness and evenness were similar to the old growth near-primary Białowieża Forest in Poland. The checklist of 96 canopy spider species of the floodplain forest of Leipzig includes 54 additions to the spider fauna of Leipzig and vicinity by recent canopy studies and eight first canopy records for Leipzig from our field work. The theridiid Dipoena torva (Thorell, 1875 was recorded for the first time in Saxony. The floodplain forest of Leipzig sustains a large and species-rich arboreal spider community and is thus a valuable habitat for a large proportion of endangered species (12%.

  2. Ecopsychosocial Aspects of Human-Tiger Conflict: An Ethnographic Study of Tiger Widows of Sundarban Delta, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chowdhury, Arabinda N; Mondal, Ranajit; Brahma, Arabinda; Biswas, Mrinal K

    2016-01-01

    Human-tiger conflict (HTC) is a serious public health issue in Sundarban Reserve Forest, India. HTC is a continued concern for the significant mortality and morbidity of both human and tiger population. This is the first comprehensive report on Sundarban tiger-human conflicts and its impact on widows whose husbands were killed by tigers. The study attempts to explore the situation analysis of HTC and the aftermath of the incident including bereavement and coping, the cultural stigma related to being killed by a tiger and the consequent discrimination, deprivation, and social rejection, and the impact on the mental health of the tiger-widows. This is a three-phase ethnographic research with a mix of quantitative and qualitative methods. In the first phase, a door-to-door village survey (3,084 households) was carried out in two villages of Sundarban, which are adjacent to the Reserve Forest, in which the incidents of human-animal conflicts and the 65 tiger-widows identified were documented. In the second phase, the 65 tiger-widows were studied to explore the ecodemography of tiger attacks and tiger-widows alongside the stigma issue by using a stigma questionnaire (n = 49). The stigma burden was compared with normal widows (n = 21) and snake-bite widows (n = 18). In the third phase, the psychosocial and cultural dimensions related to tiger attacks were studied by using in-depth interviews (IDI) of the tiger-widows, focus-group discussions (FGD), and participatory mapping in the community. Clinical examinations of the mental health of the widows were also carried out in this phase. The mean age of the 65 widows was 43.49 ± 9.58 years. Of this, 12.3% of the widows had remarried and only 4.6% of the widows were literate. In all, 67.2% of all tiger attacks occurred as a result of illegal forest entry. The main livelihood of the former husbands of the widows were 43.8% wood cutting, 28.1% fishing, 10.9% crab catching, 9.4% tiger prawn seed (juvenile prawn), and 4.7% honey

  3. Araneae Sloveniae: a national spider species checklist

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kostanjšek, Rok; Kuntner, Matjaž

    2015-01-01

    Abstract The research of the spider fauna of Slovenia dates back to the very beginning of binomial nomenclature, and has gone through more and less prolific phases with authors concentrating on taxonomy, faunistics, ecology and zoogeographic reviews. Although the body of published works is remarkable for a small nation, the faunistic data has remained too scattered for a thorough understanding of regional biotic diversity, for comparative and ecological research, and for informed conservation purposes. A national checklist is long overdue. Here, a critical review of all published records in any language is provided. The species list currently comprises 738 species, is published online at http://www.bioportal.si/katalog/araneae.php under the title Araneae Sloveniae, and will be updated in due course. This tool will fill the void in cataloguing regional spider faunas and will facilitate further araneological research in central and southern Europe. PMID:25632258

  4. Araneae Sloveniae: a national spider species checklist

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rok Kostanjšek

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The research of the spider fauna of Slovenia dates back to the very beginning of binomial nomenclature, and has gone through more and less prolific phases with authors concentrating on taxonomy, faunistics, ecology and zoogeographic reviews. Although the body of published works is remarkable for a small nation, the faunistic data has remained too scattered for a thorough understanding of regional biotic diversity, for comparative and ecological research, and for informed conservation purposes. A national checklist is long overdue. Here, a critical review of all published records in any language is provided. The species list currently comprises 738 species, is published online at http://www.bioportal.si/katalog/araneae.php under the title Araneae Sloveniae, and will be updated in due course. This tool will fill the void in cataloguing regional spider faunas and will facilitate further araneological research in central and southern Europe.

  5. Disentangling the phylogenetic and ecological components of spider phenotypic variation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thiago Gonçalves-Souza

    Full Text Available An understanding of how the degree of phylogenetic relatedness influences the ecological similarity among species is crucial to inferring the mechanisms governing the assembly of communities. We evaluated the relative importance of spider phylogenetic relationships and ecological niche (plant morphological variables to the variation in spider body size and shape by comparing spiders at different scales: (i between bromeliads and dicot plants (i.e., habitat scale and (ii among bromeliads with distinct architectural features (i.e., microhabitat scale. We partitioned the interspecific variation in body size and shape into phylogenetic (that express trait values as expected by phylogenetic relationships among species and ecological components (that express trait values independent of phylogenetic relationships. At the habitat scale, bromeliad spiders were larger and flatter than spiders associated with the surrounding dicots. At this scale, plant morphology sorted out close related spiders. Our results showed that spider flatness is phylogenetically clustered at the habitat scale, whereas it is phylogenetically overdispersed at the microhabitat scale, although phylogenic signal is present in both scales. Taken together, these results suggest that whereas at the habitat scale selective colonization affect spider body size and shape, at fine scales both selective colonization and adaptive evolution determine spider body shape. By partitioning the phylogenetic and ecological components of phenotypic variation, we were able to disentangle the evolutionary history of distinct spider traits and show that plant architecture plays a role in the evolution of spider body size and shape. We also discussed the relevance in considering multiple scales when studying phylogenetic community structure.

  6. Host selection by a kleptobiotic spider

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hénaut, Yann; Delme, Juliette; Legal, Luc; Williams, Trevor

    2005-02-01

    Why do kleptobiotic spiders of the genus Argyrodes seem to be associated with spiders of the genus Nephila worldwide? Observations following introduction of experimental insect prey of different sizes and weights on to host webs revealed that: (1) small prey are more effectively retained on the web of Nephila clavipes than on the web of another common host, Leucauge venusta. (2) N. clavipes did not consume small prey that accumulated on the web whereas larger, heavier prey were enveloped and stored. (3) We observed clear partitioning of prey items between N. clavipes and Argyrodes spp.; diet selection by Argyrodes did not overlap with that of N. clavipes but closely overlapped with that of L. venusta. (4) L. venusta responds very quickly to prey impact whereas N. clavipes is slower, offering a temporal window of opportunity for Argyrodes foraging. (5) The ability of L. venusta to detect and respond to small items also means that it acts aggressively to Argyrodes spp., whereas N. clavipes does not. Consequently, food-acquisition behaviours of Argyrodes were clearly less risky with N. clavipes compared with L. venusta. We conclude that when a kleptobiotic organism has a choice of various host species, it will opt for the least risky host that presents the highest rate of availability of food items. The fact that Nephila species present such characteristics explains the worldwide association with Argyrodes kleptobiotic spiders.

  7. Nanofibre production in spiders without electric charge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joel, Anna-Christin; Baumgartner, Werner

    2017-06-15

    Technical nanofibre production is linked to high voltage, because nanofibres are typically produced by electrospinning. In contrast, spiders have evolved a way to produce nanofibres without high voltage. These spiders are called cribellate spiders and produce nanofibres within their capture thread production. It is suggested that their nanofibres become frictionally charged when brushed over a continuous area on the calamistrum, a comb-like structure at the metatarsus of the fourth leg. Although there are indications that electrostatic charges are involved in the formation of the thread structure, final proof is missing. We proposed three requirements to validate this hypothesis: (1) the removal of any charge during or after thread production has an influence on the structure of the thread; (2) the characteristic structure of the thread can be regenerated by charging; and (3) the thread is attracted to or repelled from differently charged objects. None of these three requirements were proven true. Furthermore, mathematical calculations reveal that even at low charges, the calculated structural assembly of the thread does not match the observed reality. Electrostatic forces are therefore not involved in the production of cribellate capture threads. © 2017. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  8. The Occurrence of Red-Back Spider Latrodectus hasselti (Araneae: Theridiidae in Bandar Abbas, Southern Port of Iran

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M Shahi

    2011-06-01

    Results: Results showed the occurrence of the red-back spider, L. hasselti from Bandar Abbas, southern port of Iran. Two female specimens were found. The spider had specific morphological characters  including black color with an obvious orange to red longitudinal strip on its upper parts of  abdomen.  Conclusion: Although the specimens were collected from south of the country, however since the region is an important harbor and port and goods come form different parts of world we assume the possibility of arrival  from its origin and native breeding sites of the world. Therefore further investigation is needed to clarify the presence of this species in different parts of Iran.  

  9. Practicing the Order of Widows: a new call for an old vocation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lysaught, M Therese

    2005-04-01

    This essay argues for a renewed institution of an ancient Christian practice, the Order of Widows. Drawing on the Roman Catholic tradition's recent writings on the elderly, particularly the 1998 document from the Pontifical Council for the Laity entitled "The Dignity of Older People and their Mission in the Church and in the World," I argue that we find within the Roman Catholic tradition advocacy for a renewed understanding of the vocation of the elderly within the Church. Building on this, I then trace in the broadest of outlines some elements of what a renewal of the Order of Widows might look like. In doing so, it becomes clear how this new ecclesial practice addresses health issues of older women (devaluation, marginalization, loss of voice, impoverishment, debilitation, loneliness, isolation, and euthanasia). More importantly, such a practice moves beyond principles to demonstrate a concrete alternative. As such it would provide a powerful witness to the very culture the Church seeks to transform.

  10. Old Age, Widows, and Rural Solitude in the Eighteenth Century Central-Southern Spain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francisco GARCÍA GONZÁLEZ

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Current research about old age during the Ancient Regime in Spain is insufficient. And the same is the case with women, despite the large number of studies about gender and family history in the past decades. Taking, as a starting point, the analysis of widow women which became heads of households, this paper aims to know which specific characteristics had those households during their old age, composition, size, typology and the tendency to solitude; which activities and livelihood they had, paying attention to those differences as an expression of inequality; and which mechanisms and social reproduction strategies they followed to deal with the effects of aging. This paper is geografically focused in a wide rural area of central-southern Spain and aims to review the assumption that single and widow women in preindustrial age had subordinted lives. 

  11. Intent to remarry among Chinese elderly widowers: an oasis or an abyss?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiu, Marcus Y L; Ho, Winnie W N

    2010-09-01

    To investigate the intent to remarry and the predictors for such intent with psychosocial variables, this study used male interviewers to interview 180 Chinese elderly widowers. A structured questionnaire on singlehood and intent to remarry, which developed out of a pilot in-depth focus-group study, was used. Data were analyzed with nonparametric tests and logistic regression. The intent to remarry was predicted by younger age, inability to meet sexual needs, and dissatisfaction with widowhood. A total of 40% of these widowers who wanted a partner considered finding one from Mainland China. The sex-related findings were very different from previous studies on Chinese men. They showed that there should be professional support to help them to better adjust to late-life marriage. In addition, the study uncovered the need to expand the scope and enhance the sensitivity of current general practitioners and geriatric services to address issues beyond medical concerns.

  12. Structure–Activity Relationship Study of Spider Polyamine Toxins as Inhibitors of Ionotropic Glutamate Receptors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Xiong, Xiaofeng; Poulsen, Mette H; Hussein, Rama A

    2014-01-01

    The spider polyamine toxins Joro spider toxin-3 (JSTX-3) and Nephila polyamine toxins-1 and -8 (NPTX-1 and NPTX-8) are isolated from the venom of the orb-weaver spider Nephila clavata (Joro spider). They share a high degree of structural resemblance, their aromatic head groups being the only...

  13. Fear of spiders: The effect of real threat on the interference caused by symbolic threat

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kwakkenbos, C.M.C.; Becker, E.S.; Rinck, M.

    2010-01-01

    The effect of the presence of a real spider on attentional biases for symbolic spider stimuli was examined in 42 low-fearful and 26 high-spider-fearful participants. They completed a word colour-naming task as well as a picture orientation-judgement task, both with versus without a spider present in

  14. Three newly recorded Linyphiid spiders (Araneae: Linyphiidae from Korea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sue Yeon Lee

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Three Linyphiid spiders, Caviphantes pseudosaxetorum Wunderlich, 1979, Erigone edentata Saito and Ono, 2001, and Savignia kawachiensis Oi, 1960, are reported for the first time from Korea with taxonomic illustrations and redescription. In this study, the genus Caviphantes Oi, 1960 is also newly recorded to Korean spider fauna.

  15. Spider diversity in relation to habitat heterogeneity and an altitudinal ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Using pitfall traps, wandering spiders (Arachnida: Araneae) were sampled in a nested design from three different localities in the mountainous arid ecosystem of South Sinai at low, middle, and high altitudes. Habitat type and altitude were clearly different among the three localities. Spider diversity per trap varied spatially ...

  16. Forest floor spiders of woodlots in an agricultural landscape

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mabelis, A.

    1996-01-01

    An inventory of spiders was made in woodlots, which are situated in an agricultural landscape in the eastern part of the Netherlands. Aim of the study was to test the hypotheses that good dispersers, like spiders, will be distributed randomly over habitat patches and consequently, that there will be

  17. Alleviation of oxidative stress induced by spider mite invasion ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Spider mite invasion induces oxidative stress on bean plants and increased soluble sugars, phenole, proline and peroxidase activity, but decreased catalase activity and ascorbic acid and carotenoid concentration. Application of elicitors significantly enhanced spider mite tolerance by decreasing hydrogen peroxide, ...

  18. Using Spider-Web Patterns To Determine Toxicity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noever, David A.; Cronise, Raymond J.; Relwani, Rachna A.

    1995-01-01

    Method of determining toxicities of chemicals involves recording and analysis of spider-web patterns. Based on observation spiders exposed to various chemicals spin webs that differ, in various ways, from normal webs. Potential alternative to toxicity testing on higher animals.

  19. Brain systems underlying encounter expectancy bias in spider phobia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aue, Tatjana; Hoeppli, Marie-Eve; Piguet, Camille; Hofstetter, Christoph; Rieger, Sebastian W; Vuilleumier, Patrik

    2015-06-01

    Spider-phobic individuals are characterized by exaggerated expectancies to be faced with spiders (so-called encounter expectancy bias). Whereas phobic responses have been linked to brain systems mediating fear, little is known about how the recruitment of these systems relates to exaggerated expectancies of threat. We used fMRI to examine spider-phobic and control participants while they imagined visiting different locations in a forest after having received background information about the likelihood of encountering different animals (spiders, snakes, and birds) at these locations. Critically, imagined encounter expectancies modulated brain responses differently in phobics as compared with controls. Phobics displayed stronger negative modulation of activity in the lateral prefrontal cortex, precuneus, and visual cortex by encounter expectancies for spiders, relative to snakes or birds (within-participants analysis); these effects were not seen in controls. Between-participants correlation analyses within the phobic group further corroborated the hypothesis that these phobia-specific modulations may underlie irrationality in encounter expectancies (deviations of encounter expectancies from objective background information) in spider phobia; the greater the negative modulation a phobic participant displayed in the lateral prefrontal cortex, precuneus, and visual cortex, the stronger was her bias in encounter expectancies for spiders. Interestingly, irrationality in expectancies reflected in frontal areas relied on right rather than left hemispheric deactivations. Our data accord with the idea that expectancy biases in spider phobia may reflect deficiencies in cognitive control and contextual integration that are mediated by right frontal and parietal areas.

  20. Time-dependent motor properties of multipedal molecular spiders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samii, Laleh; Blab, Gerhard A; Bromley, Elizabeth H C; Linke, Heiner; Curmi, Paul M G; Zuckermann, Martin J; Forde, Nancy R

    2011-09-01

    Molecular spiders are synthetic biomolecular walkers that use the asymmetry resulting from cleavage of their tracks to bias the direction of their stepping motion. Using Monte Carlo simulations that implement the Gillespie algorithm, we investigate the dependence of the biased motion of molecular spiders, along with binding time and processivity, on tunable experimental parameters, such as number of legs, span between the legs, and unbinding rate of a leg from a substrate site. We find that an increase in the number of legs increases the spiders' processivity and binding time but not their mean velocity. However, we can increase the mean velocity of spiders with simultaneous tuning of the span and the unbinding rate of a spider leg from a substrate site. To study the efficiency of molecular spiders, we introduce a time-dependent expression for the thermodynamic efficiency of a molecular motor, allowing us to account for the behavior of spider populations as a function of time. Based on this definition, we find that spiders exhibit transient motor function over time scales of many hours and have a maximum efficiency on the order of 1%, weak compared to other types of molecular motors.

  1. Evidence for competition between carnivorous plants and spiders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jennings, David E; Krupa, James J; Raffel, Thomas R; Rohr, Jason R

    2010-10-07

    Several studies have demonstrated that competition between disparate taxa can be important in determining community structure, yet surprisingly, to our knowledge, no quantitative studies have been conducted on competition between carnivorous plants and animals. To examine potential competition between these taxa, we studied dietary and microhabitat overlap between pink sundews (Drosera capillaris) and wolf spiders (Lycosidae) in the field, and conducted a laboratory experiment examining the effects of wolf spiders on sundew fitness. In the field, we found that sundews and spiders had a high dietary overlap with each other and with the available arthropod prey. Associations between sundews and spiders depended on spatial scale: both sundews and spiders were found more frequently in quadrats with more abundant prey, but within quadrats, spiders constructed larger webs and located them further away from sundews as the total sundew trapping area increased, presumably to reduce competition. Spiders also constructed larger webs when fewer prey were available. In the laboratory, our experiment revealed that spiders can significantly reduce sundew fitness. Our findings suggest that members of the plant and animal kingdoms can and do compete.

  2. ‘He wasn’t in that chair’: what loneliness means to widowed older people

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kate Mary Bennet

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available We have little robust empirical evidence that articulates what being lonely means to older people and even less knowledge about what loneliness means to older widows and widowers; this article addresses that deficit. We undertook a re-analysis of 125 interviews with older people (aged 55-98 that explored their experiences of widowhood. In this article, we focus on those interviews in which participants described themselves as experiencing loneliness by the spontaneous use of terms such as ‘‘lonely’’, ‘‘loneliness’’ or ‘‘lonesome’’. Almost half of the participants (42% described themselves in that way without any prompting from the interviewer. In terms of understanding and describing the meaning of loneliness, 50% explained loneliness in terms of absence of either their spouse, a physical presence in the house or people. One-third (34% discussed loneliness in relation to time and place: night, weekends and home, and 4% described the emotional impact of loneliness. Fifteen per cent just said they were lonely without elaboration, assuming a common understanding of what loneliness means. Our findings suggest that widowed people’s understanding and experience of loneliness resonates with the concept of ‘‘emotional’’ loneliness, resulting from the loss of significant social and emotional attachment. This has important implications for the types of interventions that may be appropriate for remediating loneliness in this group.

  3. Life-as-Lived Today: Perpetual (Undesired Liminality of the Half-widows of Kashmir

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul DSouza

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available According to Victor Turner, all liminality must eventually dissolve, for it is a state of great intensity that cannot exist very long without some sort of structure to sta-bilize it. This paper takes his lead and attempts to describe the liminal status of those women, the whereabouts of whose husbands are not known (they are locally re-ferred to as 'half-widows' in the conflict zone of Kashmir, India. The article ex-amines the concept of liminality based on life as lived today by these half-widows and shows how the effects of liminality operate in their day to day life, making them extremely vulnerable victims. In this, it is an attempt to expand upon the concept of liminality, originally linked almost exclusively to rites of passage. Furthermore, this paper reflects on the idea of permanent liminality that has been elaborated by soci-ologist Arpad Szakolczai. The narratives of the half-widows of Kashmir provide an example of how they are trapped in a form of 1permanent liminality1 far beyond what was initially defined as a 'temporal state'.

  4. Spiders of Kerala Agricultural University Campus, Thrissur, Kerala, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. K. Adarsh

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available A total of 86 species of spiders belonging to 56 genera of 20 families have been recorded from the Kerala Agricultural University (KAU campus, Thrissur, Kerala, southern India.  This represents 5.1% of the total spiders’ species and 33.33% of the total families of spiders recorded in India.  The dominant spider family at KAU campus is Araneidae with 18 species of nine genera. Salticidae is represented by 14 species of 13 genera.  Out of 252 endemic spiders of India, 16 have been reported from KAU campus.  Guild structure analysis shows spiders belonging to seven types of feeding guilds present in KAU campus.  Orb-web builders are the dominant feeding guild accounting for 34%, followed by stalkers (22%, ground runners (20%, ambushers (8%, scattered line weavers (8%, foliage runners (7% and sheet-web builders (1%. 

  5. Nutrient regulation in a predator, the wolf spider Pardosa prativaga

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Kim; Mayntz, David; Toft, Søren

    2011-01-01

    Nutrient balancing is well known in herbivores and omnivores, but has only recently been demonstrated in predators. To test how a predator might regulate nutrients when the prey varies in nutrient composition, we restricted juvenile Pardosa prativaga wolf spiders to diets of one of six fruit fly......, Drosophila melanogaster, prey types varying in lipid:protein composition during their second instar. We collected all fly remnants to estimate food and nutrient intake over each meal. The spiders adjusted their capture rate and nutrient extraction in response to prey mass and nutrient composition...... irrespective of energy intake. Intake was initially regulated to a constant lipid plus protein mass, but later spiders fed on prey with high proportions of protein increased consumption relative to spiders fed on other prey types. This pattern indicates that the spiders were prepared to overconsume vast...

  6. SPIDER: CMB Polarimetry from the Edge of Space

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gualtieri, R.; et al.

    2017-11-28

    SPIDER is a balloon-borne instrument designed to map the polarization of the millimeter-wave sky at large angular scales. SPIDER targets the B-mode signature of primordial gravitational waves in the cosmic microwave background (CMB), with a focus on mapping a large sky area with high fidelity at multiple frequencies. SPIDER's first longduration balloon (LDB) flight in January 2015 deployed a total of 2400 antenna-coupled Transition Edge Sensors (TESs) at 90 GHz and 150 GHz. In this work we review the design and in-flight performance of the SPIDER instrument, with a particular focus on the measured performance of the detectors and instrument in a space-like loading and radiation environment. SPIDER's second flight in December 2018 will incorporate payload upgrades and new receivers to map the sky at 285 GHz, providing valuable information for cleaning polarized dust emission from CMB maps.

  7. Morphological evolution of spiders predicted by pendulum mechanics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jordi Moya-Laraño

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Animals have been hypothesized to benefit from pendulum mechanics during suspensory locomotion, in which the potential energy of gravity is converted into kinetic energy according to the energy-conservation principle. However, no convincing evidence has been found so far. Demonstrating that morphological evolution follows pendulum mechanics is important from a biomechanical point of view because during suspensory locomotion some morphological traits could be decoupled from gravity, thus allowing independent adaptive morphological evolution of these two traits when compared to animals that move standing on their legs; i.e., as inverted pendulums. If the evolution of body shape matches simple pendulum mechanics, animals that move suspending their bodies should evolve relatively longer legs which must confer high moving capabilities. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We tested this hypothesis in spiders, a group of diverse terrestrial generalist predators in which suspensory locomotion has been lost and gained a few times independently during their evolutionary history. In spiders that hang upside-down from their webs, their legs have evolved disproportionately longer relative to their body sizes when compared to spiders that move standing on their legs. In addition, we show how disproportionately longer legs allow spiders to run faster during suspensory locomotion and how these same spiders run at a slower speed on the ground (i.e., as inverted pendulums. Finally, when suspensory spiders are induced to run on the ground, there is a clear trend in which larger suspensory spiders tend to run much more slowly than similar-size spiders that normally move as inverted pendulums (i.e., wandering spiders. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Several lines of evidence support the hypothesis that spiders have evolved according to the predictions of pendulum mechanics. These findings have potentially important ecological and evolutionary implications since

  8. The meaning of widowhood and health to older middle-class Hindu widows living in a South Indian community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Czerenda, A Judith

    2010-10-01

    Indian widowhood has long been associated with victimization and vulnerability, but traditional attitudes toward widowhood are changing and reflect the rapid changes occurring in India. Using Caring Inquiry, a phenomenological-hermeneutic methodology that places caring at its center, this article presents a study that explores the meaning of health and widowhood to 14 older middle-class Hindu widows living in urban South India. From the data emerge six metathemes that are pertinent to nursing praxis and the delivery of health care to widows in South India: (a) Drawing From Within, (b) Seeking Help and Guidance, (c) Accepting the Role, (d) Challenging Tradition, (e) Serving Others, and (f) Finding Companionship. The findings reveal that all the widows share a common desire to move on with life, articulated by one widow as "The Show Must Go On," which serves as a foundation for a theory and model of the meaning of widowhood and health to older middle-class South Indian Hindu widows. This study advances the limited body of knowledge on the lives and health of these widows.

  9. [Latrodectism in Madagascar].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramialiharisoa, A; de Haro, L; Jouglard, J; Goyffon, M

    1994-01-01

    Data concerning lactrodectism in Madagascar is scarce. Two spider species of the Latrodectus genus are found on the Grand Isle: the black widow Latrodectus mactans mena vody and the brown widow Latrodectus geometricus. From March 1991 through July 1992, 10 cases of envenomation by these spiders were treated in the Intensive Care Unit of Antananarivo Hospital. Symptomatology was remarkable with regard to severity (one fatality due to cardiovascular failure, one gangrene of the foot) as well as clinical manifestations (immediate local pain, kidney dysfunction, arterial hypertension). In two cases, the spider was captured and identified. Both were female brown widows (Latrodectus geometricus), which might explain the differences observed in comparison with the classic features of latrodectism that have been established from American and European black widow bites. Since antivenom was unavailable, only symptomatic treatment was administered, including intravenous calcium that proved effective for pain relief.

  10. Brown spider dermonecrotic toxin directly induces nephrotoxicity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chaim, Olga Meiri; Sade, Youssef Bacila; Bertoni da Silveira, Rafael; Toma, Leny; Kalapothakis, Evanguedes; Chavez-Olortegui, Carlos; Mangili, Oldemir Carlos; Gremski, Waldemiro; Dietrich, Carl Peter von; Nader, Helena B.; Sanches Veiga, Silvio

    2006-01-01

    Brown spider (Loxosceles genus) venom can induce dermonecrotic lesions at the bite site and systemic manifestations including fever, vomiting, convulsions, disseminated intravascular coagulation, hemolytic anemia and acute renal failure. The venom is composed of a mixture of proteins with several molecules biochemically and biologically well characterized. The mechanism by which the venom induces renal damage is unknown. By using mice exposed to Loxosceles intermedia recombinant dermonecrotic toxin (LiRecDT), we showed direct induction of renal injuries. Microscopic analysis of renal biopsies from dermonecrotic toxin-treated mice showed histological alterations including glomerular edema and tubular necrosis. Hyalinization of tubules with deposition of proteinaceous material in the tubule lumen, tubule epithelial cell vacuoles, tubular edema and epithelial cell lysis was also observed. Leukocytic infiltration was neither observed in the glomerulus nor the tubules. Renal vessels showed no sign of inflammatory response. Additionally, biochemical analyses showed such toxin-induced changes in renal function as urine alkalinization, hematuria and azotemia with elevation of blood urea nitrogen levels. Immunofluorescence with dermonecrotic toxin antibodies and confocal microscopy analysis showed deposition and direct binding of this toxin to renal intrinsic structures. By immunoblotting with a hyperimmune dermonecrotic toxin antiserum on renal lysates from toxin-treated mice, we detected a positive signal at the region of 33-35 kDa, which strengthens the idea that renal failure is directly induced by dermonecrotic toxin. Immunofluorescence reaction with dermonecrotic toxin antibodies revealed deposition and binding of this toxin directly in MDCK epithelial cells in culture. Similarly, dermonecrotic toxin treatment caused morphological alterations of MDCK cells including cytoplasmic vacuoles, blebs, evoked impaired spreading and detached cells from each other and from

  11. Checklist of the spiders (Araneae) of Israel.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zonstein, Sergei; Marusik, Yuri M

    2013-01-01

    This checklist records 631 spider species and subspecies belonging to 49 families in Israel. Species distributions are given in both generalised (by main geographic areas of the country) and detailed (by localities) form. Twenty-seven records are considered as doubtful and another ten are based on misidentifications. A historical survey is provided. Each record is presented in its original combination. The list is dominated by members of the families Gnaphosidae and Salticidae (20.0% and 17.1% of total species, respectively). The level of regional endemism exceeds 37.0%.

  12. Cuticular antifungals in spiders: density- and condition dependence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel González-Tokman

    Full Text Available Animals living in groups face a high risk of disease contagion. In many arthropod species, cuticular antimicrobials constitute the first protective barrier that prevents infections. Here we report that group-living spiders produce cuticular chemicals which inhibit fungal growth. Given that cuticular antifungals may be costly to produce, we explored whether they can be modulated according to the risk of contagion (i.e. under high densities. For this purpose, we quantified cuticular antifungal activity in the subsocial crab spider Diaea ergandros in both natural nests and experimentally manipulated nests of varying density. We quantified the body-condition of spiders to test whether antifungal activity is condition dependent, as well as the effect of spider density on body-condition. We predicted cuticular antifungal activity to increase and body-condition to decrease with high spider densities, and that antifungal activity would be inversely related to body-condition. Contrary to our predictions, antifungal activity was neither density- nor condition-dependent. However, body-condition decreased with density in natural nests, but increased in experimental nests. We suggest that pathogen pressure is so important in nature that it maintains high levels of cuticular antifungal activity in spiders, impacting negatively on individual energetic condition. Future studies should identify the chemical structure of the isolated antifungal compounds in order to understand the physiological basis of a trade-off between disease prevention and energetic condition caused by group living, and its consequences in the evolution of sociality in spiders.

  13. Mermithid parasitism of Hawaiian Tetragnatha spiders in a fragmented landscape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vandergast, Amy; Roderick, George K.

    2003-01-01

    Hawaiian Tetragnatha spiders inhabiting small forest fragments on the Big Island of Hawaii are parasitized by mermithid nematodes. This is the first report of mermithid nematodes infecting spiders in Hawaii, and an initial attempt to characterize this host–parasite interaction. Because immature mermithids were not morphologically identifiable, a molecular identification was performed. A phylogenetic analysis based on 18S small ribosomal subunit nuclear gene sequences suggested that Hawaiian spider mermithids are more closely related to a mainland presumptive Aranimemis species that infects spiders, than to an insect-infecting mermithid collected on Oahu, HI, or to Mermis nigrescens, also a parasite of insects. Measured infection prevalence was low (ranging from 0 to 4%) but differed significantly among forest fragments. Infection prevalence was associated significantly with fragment area, but not with spider density nor spider species richness. Results suggest that mermithid populations are sensitive to habitat fragmentation, but that changes in infection prevalence do not appear to affect spider community structure.

  14. Spider Silk-CBD-Cellulose Nanocrystal Composites: Mechanism of Assembly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meirovitch, Sigal; Shtein, Zvi; Ben-Shalom, Tal; Lapidot, Shaul; Tamburu, Carmen; Hu, Xiao; Kluge, Jonathan A; Raviv, Uri; Kaplan, David L; Shoseyov, Oded

    2016-09-18

    The fabrication of cellulose-spider silk bio-nanocomposites comprised of cellulose nanocrystals (CNCs) and recombinant spider silk protein fused to a cellulose binding domain (CBD) is described. Silk-CBD successfully binds cellulose, and unlike recombinant silk alone, silk-CBD self-assembles into microfibrils even in the absence of CNCs. Silk-CBD-CNC composite sponges and films show changes in internal structure and CNC alignment related to the addition of silk-CBD. The silk-CBD sponges exhibit improved thermal and structural characteristics in comparison to control recombinant spider silk sponges. The glass transition temperature (Tg) of the silk-CBD sponge was higher than the control silk sponge and similar to native dragline spider silk fibers. Gel filtration analysis, dynamic light scattering (DLS), small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) and cryo-transmission electron microscopy (TEM) indicated that silk-CBD, but not the recombinant silk control, formed a nematic liquid crystalline phase similar to that observed in native spider silk during the silk spinning process. Silk-CBD microfibrils spontaneously formed in solution upon ultrasonication. We suggest a model for silk-CBD assembly that implicates CBD in the central role of driving the dimerization of spider silk monomers, a process essential to the molecular assembly of spider-silk nanofibers and silk-CNC composites.

  15. Spider Communities and Biological Control in Native Habitats Surrounding Greenhouses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Belén Cotes

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available The promotion of native vegetation as a habitat for natural enemies, which could increase their abundance and fitness, is especially useful in highly simplified settings such as Mediterranean greenhouse landscapes. Spiders as generalist predators may also be involved in intra-guild predation. However, the niche complementarity provided by spiders as a group means that increased spider diversity may facilitate complementary control actions. In this study, the interactions between spiders, the two major horticultural pests, Bemisia tabaci and Frankliniella occidentalis, and their naturally occurring predators and parasitoids were evaluated in a mix of 21 newly planted shrubs selected for habitat management in a highly disturbed horticultural system. The effects of all factors were evaluated using redundancy analysis (RDA and the generalized additive model (GAM to assess the statistical significance of abundance of spiders and pests. The GAM showed that the abundance of both pests had a significant effect on hunter spider’s abundance, whereas the abundance of B. tabaci, but not F. occidentalis, affected web-weavers’ abundance. Ordination analysis showed that spider abundance closely correlated with that of B. tabaci but not with that of F. occidentalis, suggesting that complementarity occurs, and thereby probability of biocontrol, with respect to the targeted pest B. tabaci, although the temporal patterns of the spiders differed from those of F. occidentalis. Conservation strategies involving the establishment of these native plants around greenhouses could be an effective way to reduce pest populations outdoors.

  16. Rates of trauma spectrum disorders and risks of posttraumatic stress disorder in a sample of orphaned and widowed genocide survivors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schaal, Susanne; Dusingizemungu, Jean-Pierre; Jacob, Nadja; Elbert, Thomas

    2011-01-01

    During the Rwandan genocide of 1994, nearly one million people were killed within a period of 3 months. The objectives of this study were to investigate the levels of trauma exposure and the rates of mental health disorders and to describe risk factors of posttraumatic stress reactions in Rwandan widows and orphans who had been exposed to the genocide. Trained local psychologists interviewed orphans (n=206) and widows (n=194). We used the PSS-I to assess posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), the Hopkins Symptom Checklist to assess depression and anxiety symptoms, and the M.I.N.I. to assess risk of suicidality. Subjects reported having been exposed to a high number of different types of traumatic events with a mean of 11 for both groups. Widows displayed more severe mental health problems than orphans: 41% of the widows (compared to 29% of the orphans) met symptom criteria for PTSD and a substantial proportion of widows suffered from clinically significant depression (48% versus 34%) and anxiety symptoms (59% versus 42%) even 13 years after the genocide. Over one-third of respondents of both groups were classified as suicidal (38% versus 39%). Regression analysis indicated that PTSD severity was predicted mainly by cumulative exposure to traumatic stressors and by poor physical health status. In contrast, the importance given to religious/spiritual beliefs and economic variables did not correlate with symptoms of PTSD. While a significant portion of widows and orphans continues to display severe posttraumatic stress reactions, widows seem to constitute a particularly vulnerable survivor group. Our results point to the chronicity of mental health problems in this population and show that PTSD may endure over time if not addressed by clinical intervention. Possible implications of poor mental health and the need for psychological intervention are discussed.

  17. Rates of trauma spectrum disorders and risks of posttraumatic stress disorder in a sample of orphaned and widowed genocide survivors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susanne Schaal

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available During the Rwandan genocide of 1994, nearly one million people were killed within a period of 3 months.The objectives of this study were to investigate the levels of trauma exposure and the rates of mental health disorders and to describe risk factors of posttraumatic stress reactions in Rwandan widows and orphans who had been exposed to the genocide.Trained local psychologists interviewed orphans (n=206 and widows (n=194. We used the PSS-I to assess posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD, the Hopkins Symptom Checklist to assess depression and anxiety symptoms, and the M.I.N.I. to assess risk of suicidality.Subjects reported having been exposed to a high number of different types of traumatic events with a mean of 11 for both groups. Widows displayed more severe mental health problems than orphans: 41% of the widows (compared to 29% of the orphans met symptom criteria for PTSD and a substantial proportion of widows suffered from clinically significant depression (48% versus 34% and anxiety symptoms (59% versus 42% even 13 years after the genocide. Over one-third of respondents of both groups were classified as suicidal (38% versus 39%. Regression analysis indicated that PTSD severity was predicted mainly by cumulative exposure to traumatic stressors and by poor physical health status. In contrast, the importance given to religious/spiritual beliefs and economic variables did not correlate with symptoms of PTSD.While a significant portion of widows and orphans continues to display severe posttraumatic stress reactions, widows seem to constitute a particularly vulnerable survivor group. Our results point to the chronicity of mental health problems in this population and show that PTSD may endure over time if not addressed by clinical intervention. Possible implications of poor mental health and the need for psychological intervention are discussed.

  18. Inhibition of the spider heartbeat by gravity and vibration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Finck, A.

    1984-01-01

    The rate and vigor of the spider heartbeat is controlled by an external pacemaker. A mechanical feature of the spider cardio-vascular system is the production of high serum pressure in the prosoma and the legs. This appears to be the source for leg extension. The lyriform organ on the patella of the leg is sensitive to vibratory and kinesthetic stimuli. This sensitivity depends upon the degree of leg extension. Thus the activity of the heart and the response characteristics of the sense receptor are related. The effect of a supra-threshold vibratory or gravitational stimulus is to produce an inhibition and a tachycardia of the spider heartbeat.

  19. Spider silk reinforced by graphene or carbon nanotubes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lepore, Emiliano; Bosia, Federico; Bonaccorso, Francesco; Bruna, Matteo; Taioli, Simone; Garberoglio, Giovanni; Ferrari, Andrea C.; Pugno, Nicola Maria

    2017-09-01

    Spider silk has promising mechanical properties, since it conjugates high strength (~1.5 GPa) and toughness (~150 J g-1). Here, we report the production of silk incorporating graphene and carbon nanotubes by spider spinning, after feeding spiders with the corresponding aqueous dispersions. We observe an increment of the mechanical properties with respect to pristine silk, up to a fracture strength ~5.4 GPa and a toughness modulus ~1570 J g-1. This approach could be extended to other biological systems and lead to a new class of artificially modified biological, or ‘bionic’, materials.

  20. Biotechnological Trends in Spider and Scorpion Antivenom Development

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Laustsen, Andreas Hougaard; Solà, Mireia; Jappe, Emma Christine

    2016-01-01

    Spiders and scorpions are notorious for their fearful dispositions and their ability to inject venom into prey and predators, causing symptoms such as necrosis, paralysis, and excruciating pain. Information on venom composition and the toxins present in these species is growing due to an interest...... at an increasingly faster pace. In this review, the current knowledge of spider and scorpion venoms is presented, followed by a discussion of all published biotechnological efforts within development of spider and scorpion antitoxins based on small molecules, antibodies and fragments thereof, and next generation...

  1. Intracellular recording from a spider vibration receptor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gingl, Ewald; Burger, Anna-M; Barth, Friedrich G

    2006-05-01

    The present study introduces a new preparation of a spider vibration receptor that allows intracellular recording of responses to natural mechanical or electrical stimulation of the associated mechanoreceptor cells. The spider vibration receptor is a lyriform slit sense organ made up of 21 cuticular slits located on the distal end of the metatarsus of each walking leg. The organ is stimulated when the tarsus receives substrate vibrations, which it transmits to the organ's cuticular structures, reducing the displacement to about one tenth due to geometrical reasons. Current clamp recording was used to record action potentials generated by electrical or mechanical stimuli. Square pulse stimulation identified two groups of sensory cells, the first being single-spike cells which generated only one or two action potentials and the second being multi-spike cells which produced bursts of action potentials. When the more natural mechanical sinusoidal stimulation was applied, differences in adaptation rate between the two cell types remained. In agreement with prior extracellular recordings, both cell types showed a decrease in the threshold tarsus deflection with increasing stimulus frequency. Off-responses to mechanical stimuli have also been seen in the metatarsal organ for the first time.

  2. Microcirculation abnormalities provoked by Loxosceles spiders' envenomation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cristina de Oliveira-Lima, Kátia; Farsky, Sandra Helena P; Lopes, Priscila Hess; de Andrade, Rute Maria Gonçalves; van den Berg, Carmen W; Tambourgi, Denise V

    2016-06-15

    Loxoscelism is caused by envenomation by spiders from Loxosceles genus. Clinical symptoms only appear a few hours after envenomation and can evolve in local reactions, such as dermonecrosis, and systemic reactions, including intravascular haemolysis, intravascular coagulation and renal failure. Considering that alterations in the microcirculatory network are involved in the pathogenesis of different diseases, including the inflammatory process, the aim of this study was to investigate the action of venoms of males and females of Loxosceles intermedia and Loxosceles laeta on the microcirculatory network and examine the systemic production of inflammatory mediators in a murine model of loxoscelism. We observed that during systemic envenomation, the alterations in the microcirculation include increase in the number of rolling cells, which was more intense in animals injected with female Loxosceles spider venoms. This positively correlated with increase in TNF-α and NO serum levels, induction of which was higher by female venoms when compared with male venoms. The increase of leukocytes rolling was not accompanied by increase of cell adhesion. The absence of leukocyte extravasation may explain why in mice, in contrast to humans, no cutaneous loxoscelism occurs. Thus, targeting the neutrophil adhesion and extravasation in Loxosceles envenomed patients may prevent cutaneous pathology. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Phylogenomics resolves a spider backbone phylogeny and rejects a prevailing paradigm for orb web evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bond, Jason E; Garrison, Nicole L; Hamilton, Chris A; Godwin, Rebecca L; Hedin, Marshal; Agnarsson, Ingi

    2014-08-04

    Spiders represent an ancient predatory lineage known for their extraordinary biomaterials, including venoms and silks. These adaptations make spiders key arthropod predators in most terrestrial ecosystems. Despite ecological, biomedical, and biomaterial importance, relationships among major spider lineages remain unresolved or poorly supported. Current working hypotheses for a spider "backbone" phylogeny are largely based on morphological evidence, as most molecular markers currently employed are generally inadequate for resolving deeper-level relationships. We present here a phylogenomic analysis of spiders including taxa representing all major spider lineages. Our robust phylogenetic hypothesis recovers some fundamental and uncontroversial spider clades, but rejects the prevailing paradigm of a monophyletic Orbiculariae, the most diverse lineage, containing orb-weaving spiders. Based on our results, the orb web either evolved much earlier than previously hypothesized and is ancestral for a majority of spiders or else it has multiple independent origins, as hypothesized by precladistic authors. Cribellate deinopoid orb weavers that use mechanically adhesive silk are more closely related to a diverse clade of mostly webless spiders than to the araneoid orb-weaving spiders that use adhesive droplet silks. The fundamental shift in our understanding of spider phylogeny proposed here has broad implications for interpreting the evolution of spiders, their remarkable biomaterials, and a key extended phenotype--the spider web. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Black holes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Feast, M.W.

    1981-01-01

    This article deals with two questions, namely whether it is possible for black holes to exist, and if the answer is yes, whether we have found any yet. In deciding whether black holes can exist or not the central role in the shaping of our universe played by the forse of gravity is discussed, and in deciding whether we are likely to find black holes in the universe the author looks at the way stars evolve, as well as white dwarfs and neutron stars. He also discusses the problem how to detect a black hole, possible black holes, a southern black hole, massive black holes, as well as why black holes are studied

  5. Anaphylaxis with Latrodectus Antivenin Resulting in Cardiac Arrest

    OpenAIRE

    Murphy, Christine M.; Hong, Jeannie J.; Beuhler, Michael C.

    2011-01-01

    Latrodectus mactans antivenin is a safe and effective therapy for severe black widow spider envenomations when given to most patients. We report a case of a 37-year-old male with a history of asthma that was given L. mactans antivenin for symptoms related to a black widow envenomation and developed a severe anaphylactic reaction resulting in cardiac arrest. When traditional therapies failed, the patient was given methylene blue for anaphylactic shock resulting in a 30-h period of hemodynamic ...

  6. Food of the Little Swift Apus affinis and African Black Swift Apus ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The food habits of the Little Swift Apus affinis and African Black Swift Apus barbatus were quantified at Kimberley, Northern Cape province and Makapansgat, Limpopo province, South Africa. As previously documented for other species, both of these swifts took a wide variety of aerial arthropods including spiders as well as ...

  7. Evolution of stenophagy in spiders (Araneae): evidence based on the comparative analysis of spider diets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pekár, Stano; Coddington, Jonathan A; Blackledge, Todd A

    2012-03-01

    Stenophagy (narrow diet breadth) represents an extreme of trophic specialization in carnivores, but little is known about the forces driving its evolution. We used spiders, the most diversified group of terrestrial predators, to investigate whether stenophagy (1) promoted diversification; (2) was phylogenetically conserved and evolutionarily derived state; and (3) was determined either by geographical distribution and foraging guild. We used published data on the prey of almost 600 species. Six categories of stenophagy were found: myrmecophagy, araneophagy, lepidopterophagy, termitophagy, dipterophagy, and crustaceophagy. We found that the species diversity of euryphagous genera and families was similar to stenophagous genera and families. At the family level, stenophagy evolved repeatedly and independently. Within families, the basal condition was oligophagy or euryphagy. Most types of stenophagy were clearly derived: myrmecophagy in Zodariidae; lepidopterophagy in Araneidae; dipterophagy in Theridiidae. In contrast, araneophagy was confined to basal and intermediate lineages, suggesting its ancestral condition. The diet breadth of species from the tropics and subtropics was less diverse than species from the temperate zone. Diet breadth was lower in cursorial spiders compared to web-building species. Thus, the evolution of stenophagy in spiders appears to be complex and governed by phylogeny as well as by ecological determinants. © 2011 The Author(s). Evolution© 2011 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  8. Biomimetic calcium phosphate coatings on recombinant spider silk fibres

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Yang, Liang; Hedhammar, My; Blom, Tobias; Leifer, Klaus; Johansson, Jan; Habibovic, Pamela; van Blitterswijk, Clemens

    2010-01-01

    Calcium phosphate ceramic coatings, applied on surfaces of metallic and polymeric biomaterials, can improve their performance in bone repair and regeneration. Spider silk is biocompatible, strong and elastic, and hence an attractive biomaterial for applications in connective tissue repair. Recently,

  9. Peculiar torsion dynamical response of spider dragline silk

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Dabiao; Yu, Longteng; He, Yuming; Peng, Kai; Liu, Jie; Guan, Juan; Dunstan, D. J.

    2017-07-01

    The torsional properties of spider dragline silks from Nephila edulis and Nephila pilipes spiders are investigated by using a torsion pendulum technique. A permanent torsional deformation is observed after even small torsional strain. This behaviour is quite different from that of the other materials tested here, i.e., carbon fiber, thin metallic wires, Kevlar fiber, and human hair. The spider dragline thus displays a strong energy dissipation upon the initial excitation (around 75% for small strains and more for a larger strain), which correspondingly reduces the amplitude of subsequent oscillations around the new equilibrium position. The variation of torsional stiffness in relaxation dynamics of spider draglines for different excitations is also determined. The experimental result is interpreted in the light of the hierarchical structure of dragline silk.

  10. [Effectiveness of a repellent paint against the spider Loxosceles laeta].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Catalán, Alejandro; Araya, Jorge E; Varela, Héctor; Cortés, William; Sagua, Hernán; González Cortés, Jorge

    2009-02-01

    Loxoscelism is a severe reaction to the bite of the spider Loxosceles laeta. In recent years, a paint with repellent properties has been promoted in the commerce. However, there are no reports of experiments evaluating its effectiveness. To evaluate experimentally the repellent properties of a paint against Loxosceles laeta. Males, females and nymphs of L laeta were deposited in cockpits that allow the free displacement of the spider. Half of the cockpit was covered with repellent paint. Daily observations during one week, determined how frequently the spiders occupied the space covered with repellent paint. The experiments were run in triplicate. No statistical differences in the occupancy of spaces covered with repellent paint or not covered with it were observed for nymphs (87% and 67%, respectively), males (72% and 77%, respectively) or females (91% and 84%, respectively). The tested paint does not have a repellent action against the spider Loxosceles laeta.

  11. SPIDERS (ARANEI) OF VOLGOGRAD SITY AND ITS ENVIRONS

    OpenAIRE

    A. V. Ponomarev; A. S. Khnykin

    2013-01-01

    Abstract. Aim. Fauna of spiders of Volgograd Region is researched uncompletely. Only 149 species of 19 families were listed in previous references. Complete listing of spiders of this large region was the aim of our investigation.Location. Volgograd Region, Russia.Methods. Material was collected in Volgograd City with environs and Volga-Don area in 2009–2013. Areas with minimum of anthropogenic influence within the city, artificial ecosystem of park type, plots of native vegetation along the ...

  12. Benefits of cooperation with genetic kin in a subsocial spider

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schneider, J.M.; Bilde, T.

    2008-01-01

    used a cross-fostering design to control for genetic relatedness and group membership. Our study animal was the periodic social spider Stegodyphus lineatus, a transitional species that belongs to a genus containing both permanent social and periodic social species. In S. lineatus, the young cooperate....... Hence, in communally feeding spiders, nepotism favors group retention and reduces the conflict between selfish interests and the interests of the group....

  13. Spiders of the Vine Plants in Southern Moravia

    OpenAIRE

    Lucie Havlová; Vladimír Hula; Jana Niedobová

    2015-01-01

    Araneofauna of vineyards is relatively known in Central Europe but we have a lack of knowledge about araneofauna which occur directly on the vine plants. Our investigation was focused on spiders which live on vine plants, especially on the vine plants trunks. We investigated spiders in six vineyards in southern Moravia (Šatov, Mikulov, Popice, Morkůvky, Nosislav and Blučina). Vineyards were under different soil management, traps were placed on different parts of particular locality (terraced ...

  14. Spider silk as a blueprint for greener materials : a review

    OpenAIRE

    Lefèvre, Thierry; Auger, Michèle

    2016-01-01

    Spider silk exhibits remarkable properties, especially its well-known tensile performances. They rely on a complex nanostructured hierarchical organisation that studies progressively elucidate. Spider silk encompasses a vast range of fibres that exhibit diverse and captivating physical and biological characteristics. The full understanding of the relation between structure and properties may lead in the future to the design of a variety of high-performance, tailored materials and ...

  15. Small Molecules from Spiders Used as Chemical Probes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Olsen, Christian Adam; Kristensen, Anders S.; Strømgaard, Kristian

    2011-01-01

    Spiders are important species in ecological systems and as major predators of insects they are endowed with a plethora of low‐molecular‐weight natural products having intriguing biological activities. The isolation and biological characterization of these entities are well established, however, o...... the area of pheromones and allomones from spiders. Herein, we recapitulate these recent results, put them into perspective with previous findings, and provide an outlook for future studies of these chemotypes....

  16. Ecopsychosocial Aspects of Human–Tiger Conflict: An Ethnographic Study of Tiger Widows of Sundarban Delta, India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chowdhury, Arabinda N.; Mondal, Ranajit; Brahma, Arabinda; Biswas, Mrinal K.

    2016-01-01

    AIMS Human–tiger conflict (HTC) is a serious public health issue in Sundarban Reserve Forest, India. HTC is a continued concern for the significant mortality and morbidity of both human and tiger population. This is the first comprehensive report on Sundarban tiger–human conflicts and its impact on widows whose husbands were killed by tigers. The study attempts to explore the situation analysis of HTC and the aftermath of the incident including bereavement and coping, the cultural stigma related to being killed by a tiger and the consequent discrimination, deprivation, and social rejection, and the impact on the mental health of the tiger-widows. METHODS This is a three-phase ethnographic research with a mix of quantitative and qualitative methods. In the first phase, a door-to-door village survey (3,084 households) was carried out in two villages of Sundarban, which are adjacent to the Reserve Forest, in which the incidents of human–animal conflicts and the 65 tiger-widows identified were documented. In the second phase, the 65 tiger-widows were studied to explore the ecodemography of tiger attacks and tiger-widows alongside the stigma issue by using a stigma questionnaire (n = 49). The stigma burden was compared with normal widows (n = 21) and snake-bite widows (n = 18). In the third phase, the psychosocial and cultural dimensions related to tiger attacks were studied by using in-depth interviews (IDI) of the tiger-widows, focus-group discussions (FGD), and participatory mapping in the community. Clinical examinations of the mental health of the widows were also carried out in this phase. RESULTS The mean age of the 65 widows was 43.49 ± 9.58 years. Of this, 12.3% of the widows had remarried and only 4.6% of the widows were literate. In all, 67.2% of all tiger attacks occurred as a result of illegal forest entry. The main livelihood of the former husbands of the widows were 43.8% wood cutting, 28.1% fishing, 10.9% crab catching, 9.4% tiger prawn seed

  17. Widowers' accounts of maternal mortality among women of low socioeconomic status in Nigeria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nwokocha, Ezebunwa Ethelbert

    2012-09-01

    The research is based on information collected on 50 deceased Nigerian women of low socioeconomic status in different locations of the country including Lagos, Ibadan, Kaduna, Zaria, Minna, Enugu, and Port-Harcourt among others. They had some common characteristics such as low levels of education, involvement in petty trading and were clients of a microfinance bank as small loan receivers. Primary data were generated mainly through verbal autopsy with widowers employing in-depth interviews and key informant interviews. In addition, unobtrusive observation was carried out in these locations to ascertain in some instances the distance between the deceased homes and health facilities patronised by the women. Secondary data were specific to death certificates of the deceased supplied by the widowers. Both ethnographic summaries and content analysis were employed in data analysis to account for contextual differences, especially in a multicultural society like Nigeria. The findings implicated several issues that are taken for granted at the micro-family and macro-society levels. It specifically revealed that small loans alone are not sufficient to empower poor women to make meaningful contributions to their own reproductive health in a patriarchal society like Nigeria. Results also indicated that cultural differences as well as rural-urban dichotomy were not proximate determinants of maternal behaviour; the latter rather finds expression in low socioeconomic status. Consequently, policy relevant recommendations that could contribute to significant maternal mortality reduction were proffered.

  18. The psychosocial effects of "La Violencia" on widows of El Quiche, Guatemala.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zur, J

    1993-06-01

    In Guatemala, government-sponsored terrorism directed at Mayan villagers resulted in at least 122,000 deaths and 18,000 "disappearances" during the period 1975-85. Even today, "low intensity warfare" in the form of random acts of terrorism continue. Thus, in the past 20 years, 120,000 women have been widowed, 11,000 in the province of El Quiche alone. This violence extended to threats of death directed toward women who joined a human rights organization, to the rape of women by their husbands' murderers and the further murder or kidnapping of their relatives. Groups of women were split between widows and married women, and women had to recreate their roles in society. The resulting reformation of family life led to an irretrievably altered relationship with the past. Survivors had to cope with pervasive fear, with a new understanding of their vulnerability, and with an inability to fulfill their obligations towards the dead who were buried in clandestine graves. The women who coped the best were those who learned to comprehend the violence in political terms through participation in human rights and women's groups and those who lived in villages where the dead were exhumed and properly buried. The psychological pain suffered by the women often manifested itself in physical ways and added to the suffering they realized from overwork and poor nutrition.

  19. Visual Discrimination Learning in the Jumping Spider Phidippus regius

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Massimo De Agrò

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Over the past decade, research in comparative psychology has increasingly focused on non-vertebrate models of cognition. Jumping spiders provide excellent models for the study of visually mediated behaviors, such as associative learning or the navigation of complex environments. Here, we tested visual and memory abilities of Phidippus regius to discriminate between artificial geometrical stimuli and to generalize the learned discrimination to illusory stimuli, using the amodal completion mechanism. Spiders were first trained to associate one shape (‘X’ or ‘O’ with a reward (sugar water, whilst the other shape was associated with an aversive taste (acidic water. Spiders were then asked to choose between the two shapes in the absence of any reward or punishment. They were then presented with an occluded version of the previously rewarded shape to test for the presence of amodal completion. Spiders were able to learn the discrimination task, although the association was not transferred to the illusory stimulus. This study provides the first demonstration of shape discrimination learning in a jumping spider. The results of the test on the illusory shape are discussed considering that either the spiders' visual system may not require amodal completion or they could have the tendency to learn the shape associated with the aversive taste rather than that associated with the reward.

  20. Wayanad widows: A study of sustainable rural economic development using renewable energy technology for micro enterprise in Kerala, India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Voorhees, Maire Claire

    This thesis examines the situation of the farmer widows of Wayanad, Kerala through exploration of the underlying agricultural and economic issues leading to farmers' suicides, the current state of the environment in the Wayanad District of Kerala, India, and an economic model of micro-entrepreneurship to address economic and social issues of the surviving widows. Quantitative and qualitative research methods were performed through the assessment and document analysis of archive, newspaper, and published reports to gain a macro perspective. The Environmental Vulnerability Index was used as a tool to evaluate and organize findings of the current environmental conditions in the region. This thesis supports the sustainability concept of considering the economic, ecological, and social impacts when identifying economic development pathways. The goal was to explore the appropriateness of small household solar systems as vehicle in the micro-enterprise model to be a sustainable alternative economic pathway to agriculture for the farmer widows of Wayanad.

  1. Evidence of human-like, holistic face processing in spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taubert, Jessica

    2010-02-01

    Human subjects build mental representations of facial identity that are "holistic." This has been clearly demonstrated with the composite effect where the representation of a whole face interferes with the recognition of features. Very few studies have sought evidence of holistic representations being built by nonhumans. This study tested captive, black-handed spider monkeys (N = 2) on a standard composite task, comparable to those run previously on human subjects. In Experiment 1, the monkeys were tested with the faces of conspecifics (Ateles geoffroyi), humans (Homo sapiens), and domestic sheep (Ovis aries) together with stick objects. The results of Experiment 1 revealed that both conspecific and human faces were processed holistically. The subsequent test (Experiment 2) confirmed that, for both subjects, the face composite effect was contingent on upright orientation. A direct comparison with available human data demonstrates a level of similarity, strongly suggestive of cognitive homology.

  2. Black Alcoholism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watts, Thomas D.; Wright, Roosevelt

    1988-01-01

    Examines some aspects of the problem of alcoholism among Blacks, asserting that Black alcoholism can best be considered in an ecological, environmental, sociocultural, and public health context. Notes need for further research on alcoholism among Blacks and for action to reduce the problem of Black alcoholism. (NB)

  3. Black Culture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Angela Khristin

    2013-01-01

    The migration of blacks in North America through slavery became united. The population of blacks passed down a tradition of artist through art to native born citizens. The art tradition involved telling stories to each generation in black families. The black culture elevated by tradition created hope to determine their personal freedom to escape…

  4. The phylogeny of fossil whip spiders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garwood, Russell J; Dunlop, Jason A; Knecht, Brian J; Hegna, Thomas A

    2017-04-21

    Arachnids are a highly successful group of land-dwelling arthropods. They are major contributors to modern terrestrial ecosystems, and have a deep evolutionary history. Whip spiders (Arachnida, Amblypygi), are one of the smaller arachnid orders with ca. 190 living species. Here we restudy one of the oldest fossil representatives of the group, Graeophonus anglicus Pocock, 1911 from the Late Carboniferous (Duckmantian, ca. 315 Ma) British Middle Coal Measures of the West Midlands, UK. Using X-ray microtomography, our principal aim was to resolve details of the limbs and mouthparts which would allow us to test whether this fossil belongs in the extant, relict family Paracharontidae; represented today by a single, blind species Paracharon caecus Hansen, 1921. Tomography reveals several novel and significant character states for G. anglicus; most notably in the chelicerae, pedipalps and walking legs. These allowed it to be scored into a phylogenetic analysis together with the recently described Paracharonopsis cambayensis Engel & Grimaldi, 2014 from the Eocene (ca. 52 Ma) Cambay amber, and Kronocharon prendinii Engel & Grimaldi, 2014 from Cretaceous (ca. 99 Ma) Burmese amber. We recovered relationships of the form ((Graeophonus (Paracharonopsis + Paracharon)) + (Charinus (Stygophrynus (Kronocharon (Charon (Musicodamon + Paraphrynus)))))). This tree largely reflects Peter Weygoldt's 1996 classification with its basic split into Paleoamblypygi and Euamblypygi lineages; we were able to score several of his characters for the first time in fossils. Our analysis draws into question the monophyly of the family Charontidae. Our data suggest that Graeophonus is a crown group amblypygid, and falls within a monophyletic Paleoamblypgi clade, but outside the family Paracharontidae (= Paracharonopsis + Paracharon). Our results also suggest a new placement for the Burmese amber genus Kronocharon, a node further down from its original position. Overall, we offer a

  5. Molecular cloning and expression of the C-terminus of spider ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    PRAKASH KUMAR

    . Among the types of spider silks, draglines from Nephila clavipes and Araneus diadematus have been the most intensely studied. However, the entirety of a spider silk gene has not been cloned yet, and sequence data from. Molecular cloning ...

  6. Riparian spiders as sentinels of PCB contamination across heterogeneous aquatic ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riparian spiders are being used increasingly to track spatial patterns of contaminants in and fluxing from aquatic ecosystems. However, our understanding of the circumstances under which spiders are effective sentinels of aquatic pollution is limited. The present study tests the ...

  7. The EU as black widow; Devouring the WEU to give birth to a European Security and Defence Policy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wessel, Ramses A.; Kronenberger, Vincent

    2001-01-01

    The Treaty of Nice will finally turn the European Union into a security and defence organisation. Alongside its tasks in all other areas the Union will be given the competence to strengthen its contribution to the maintenance of international peace and security in accordance with the UN Charter.

  8. PULSED GAMMA RAYS FROM THE ORIGINAL MILLISECOND AND BLACK WIDOW PULSARS: A CASE FOR CAUSTIC RADIO EMISSION?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Guillemot, L.; Kramer, M.; Freire, P. C. C.; Noutsos, A. [Max-Planck-Institut fuer Radioastronomie, 53121 Bonn (Germany); Johnson, T. J.; Harding, A. K. [NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD 20771 (United States); Venter, C. [Centre for Space Research, North-West University, Potchefstroom Campus, 2520 Potchefstroom (South Africa); Kerr, M.; Michelson, P. F. [W. W. Hansen Experimental Physics Laboratory, Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology, Department of Physics and SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305 (United States); Pancrazi, B. [CNRS, IRAP, F-31028 Toulouse Cedex 4 (France); Livingstone, M. [Department of Physics, McGill University, Montreal, PQ H3A 2T8 (Canada); Janssen, G. H.; Jaroenjittichai, P.; Stappers, B. W.; Espinoza, C. M. [Jodrell Bank Centre for Astrophysics, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Manchester, M13 9PL (United Kingdom); Cognard, I. [Laboratoire de Physique et Chimie de l' Environnement, LPCE UMR 6115 CNRS, F-45071 Orleans Cedex 02 (France); Camilo, F. [Columbia Astrophysics Laboratory, Columbia University, New York, NY 10027 (United States); Gargano, F. [Istituto Nazionale di Fisica Nucleare, Sezione di Bari, 70126 Bari (Italy); Grove, J. E. [Space Science Division, Naval Research Laboratory, Washington, DC 20375-5352 (United States); Johnston, S., E-mail: guillemo@mpifr-bonn.mpg.de, E-mail: tyrel.j.johnson@gmail.com, E-mail: Christo.Venter@nwu.ac.za, E-mail: kerrm@stanford.edu [CSIRO Astronomy and Space Science, Australia Telescope National Facility, Epping NSW 1710 (Australia); and others

    2012-01-01

    We report the detection of pulsed gamma-ray emission from the fast millisecond pulsars (MSPs) B1937+21 (also known as J1939+2134) and B1957+20 (J1959+2048) using 18 months of survey data recorded by the Fermi Large Area Telescope and timing solutions based on radio observations conducted at the Westerbork and Nancay radio telescopes. In addition, we analyzed archival Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer and XMM-Newton X-ray data for the two MSPs, confirming the X-ray emission properties of PSR B1937+21 and finding evidence ({approx}4{sigma}) for pulsed emission from PSR B1957+20 for the first time. In both cases the gamma-ray emission profile is characterized by two peaks separated by half a rotation and are in close alignment with components observed in radio and X-rays. These two pulsars join PSRs J0034-0534 and J2214+3000 to form an emerging class of gamma-ray MSPs with phase-aligned peaks in different energy bands. The modeling of the radio and gamma-ray emission profiles suggests co-located emission regions in the outer magnetosphere.

  9. First report of clinical presentation of a bite by a running spider ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This article describes the clinical progression of symptoms over a period of 5 days of a bite inflicted by a Philodromus sp. spider. Commonly known as 'running spiders', these are not considered to be harmful to humans. This report, however, is the first description of an actual bite by a member of this group of spiders ...

  10. The Language of Revolution and the Power of Storytelling in The Pregnant Widow

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alaa Alghamdi

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Martin Amis uses the language of revolution to describe the newly altered social circumstances at the height of the sexual revolution in his semi-autobiographical novel The Pregnant Widow. The concept of a ‘language of revolution’ as well as second- and third-wave feminist scholarship is applied to a textual analysis of the novel. Amis’s brand of satire creates a sense of displacement and challenges existing perceptions about gender, culture and sexuality, exposing them as constructed and changeable norms. Moreover, it becomes clear that the author is skeptical about the benefits of the sexual revolution for either gender, and that he views its liberating aspects as unfulfilled, particularly for women. Given that Amis names one of his characters Scheherazade, evoking the legendary heroine of The Arabian Nights, the importance of storytelling in the novel is also examined and found to be a potentially redeeming force.

  11. Depression and anxiety among war-widows of Nepal: a post-civil war cross-sectional study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Basnet, Syaron; Kandel, Pragya; Lamichhane, Prabhat

    2018-02-01

    Thousands of Nepalese women were widowed as a consequence of a decade (1996-2006) long civil war in Nepal. These women are at grave risk of mental health problems due to both traumatic experiences and violation of natural order of widowhood. The present study explores the depression and anxiety among war-widows. In 2012, a cross-sectional study was designed to interview 358 war-widows using validitated Beck Depression Inventory and Beck Anxiety Inventory in four districts of Nepal - Bardiya, Surkhet, Sindhupalchowk and Kavrepalanchowk with history of high conflict intensity. The prevalence of depression and anxiety was 53% and 63% respectively. Financial stress was significantly associated with depression (2.67, 95% CI: 1.40-5.07) and anxiety (2.37, 95% CI: 1.19-4.72). High autonomy of women as compared to low autonomy, high social support as compared to low social support and literacy as opposed to illiteracy was associated with less likelihood of depression and anxiety. Our results suggest high magnitude of depression and anxiety among war-widows in Nepal. Future policy efforts should be directed at providing mental health services to identify mental health issues among conflict affected individuals with focus on education, employment and activities to promote social support and autonomy at community.

  12. 'People insult her as a sexy woman': sexuality, stigma and vulnerability among widowed and divorced women in Oromiya, Ethiopia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newton-Levinson, Anna; Winskell, Kate; Abdela, Berissa; Rubardt, Marcie; Stephenson, Rob

    2014-01-01

    Widowed and divorced women, sometimes referred to as 'female heads of household', are one of the most impoverished and marginalised groups in the world. Widowed and divorced women are often overlooked in the literature or are seen primarily as economically or socially marginalised beings; their sexuality is rarely addressed. In an effort to understand the experiences and challenges faced by such women, we conducted and analysed four focus-group discussions, seven in-depth interviews and four interactive activities with 32 widowed and divorced women and with 25 other community members in Oromiya, Ethiopia. Findings indicate that women experienced high levels of community stigma in relation to their sexuality. Participants' fear of community stigma, and the actions they took to avert it, further served to marginalise them within their community and had negative impact on their economic, social and health support systems and, ultimately, on their overall well-being. Future interventions need to acknowledge sexual stigma as a driving force in the many challenges these women face. Further programmatic work is needed to reduce stigma related to widowed and divorced women's sexuality and to decrease their vulnerability to rape.

  13. Rates and risks for prolonged grief disorder in a sample of orphaned and widowed genocide survivors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schaal, Susanne; Jacob, Nadja; Dusingizemungu, Jean-Pierre; Elbert, Thomas

    2010-07-06

    The concept of Prolonged Grief Disorder (PGD) has been defined in recent years by Prigerson and co-workers, who have developed and empirically tested consensus and diagnostic criteria for PGD. Using these most recent criteria defining PGD, the aim of this study was to determine rates of and risks for PGD in survivors of the 1994 Rwandan genocide who had lost a parent and/or the husband before, during or after the 1994 events. The PG-13 was administered to 206 orphans or half orphans and to 194 widows. A regression analysis was carried out to examine risk factors of PGD. 8.0% (n = 32) of the sample met criteria for PGD with an average of 12 years post-loss. All but one person had faced multiple losses and the majority indicated that their grief-related loss was due to violent death (70%). Grief was predicted mainly by time since the loss, by the violent nature of the loss, the severity of symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and the importance given to religious/spiritual beliefs. By contrast, gender, age at the time of bereavement, bereavement status (widow versus orphan), the number of different types of losses reported and participation in the funeral ceremony did not impact the severity of prolonged grief reactions. A significant portion of the interviewed sample continues to experience grief over interpersonal losses and unresolved grief may endure over time if not addressed by clinical intervention. Severity of grief reactions may be associated with a set of distinct risk factors. Subjects who lose someone through violent death seem to be at special risk as they have to deal with the loss experience as such and the traumatic aspects of the loss. Symptoms of PTSD may hinder the completion of the mourning process. Religious beliefs may facilitate the mourning process and help to find meaning in the loss. These aspects need to be considered in the treatment of PGD.

  14. Radiation Safety System for SPIDER Neutral Beam Accelerator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandri, S.; Coniglio, A.; D'Arienzo, M.; Poggi, C.

    2011-12-01

    SPIDER (Source for Production of Ion of Deuterium Extracted from RF Plasma only) and MITICA (Megavolt ITER Injector Concept Advanced) are the ITER neutral beam injector (NBI) testing facilities of the PRIMA (Padova Research Injector Megavolt Accelerated) Center. Both injectors accelerate negative deuterium ions with a maximum energy of 1 MeV for MITICA and 100 keV for SPIDER with a maximum beam current of 40 A for both experiments. The SPIDER facility is classified in Italy as a particle accelerator. At present, the design of the radiation safety system for the facility has been completed and the relevant reports have been presented to the Italian regulatory authorities. Before SPIDER can operate, approval must be obtained from the Italian Regulatory Authority Board (IRAB) following a detailed licensing process. In the present work, the main project information and criteria for the SPIDER injector source are reported together with the analysis of hypothetical accidental situations and safety issues considerations. Neutron and photon nuclear analysis is presented, along with special shielding solutions designed to meet Italian regulatory dose limits. The contribution of activated corrosion products (ACP) to external exposure of workers has also been assessed. Nuclear analysis indicates that the photon contribution to worker external exposure is negligible, and the neutron dose can be considered by far the main radiation protection issue. Our results confirm that the injector has no important radiological impact on the population living around the facility.

  15. SPIDER: Probing the Early Universe with a Suborbital Polarimeter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fraisse, Aurélien A.; SPIDER Collaboration

    2012-01-01

    SPIDER is a balloon-borne polarimeter designed to detect a divergence-free polarization pattern ("B-modes") in the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB). In the inflationary scenario, the spectrum of the tensor perturbations that generate this signal is proportional to that of the primordial scalar perturbations through the tensor-to-scalar ratio r. The expected level of systematic error in the SPIDER instrument is significantly below the amplitude of an interesting cosmological B-mode signal with r=0.03. An optimized scanning strategy enables us to minimize uncertainty in the reconstruction of the Stokes parameters used to characterize the CMB, while providing access to a relatively wide range of angular scales. In the SPIDER field, the polarized emission from interstellar dust is as bright or brighter than the cosmological r=0.03 B-mode signal at all SPIDER frequencies (90, 150, and 280 GHz), a situation similar to that found in the "Southern Hole." Despite this foreground contamination, two 20-day flights of the SPIDER instrument will constrain the amplitude of the B-mode signal to rAPRA-NNX07AL64G), the National Science Foundation (ANT-1043515), the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, and the David and Lucile Packard Foundation. Support in Canada is provided by NSERC, the Canadian Space Agency, the Canada Foundation for Innovation, and CIFAR.

  16. Endemic harvestmen and spiders of Austria (Arachnida: Opiliones, Araneae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Komposch, Christian

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available A comprehensive overview of plant, fungus and animal species of Austria revealed a total of 748 endemic and subendemic species, including, 11 harvestman and 46 spider species. Altogether two endemic harvestmen (Nemastoma bidentatum relictum, Nemastoma schuelleri and 8 endemic spiders (Abacoproeces molestus, Collinsia (caliginosa nemenziana, Mughiphantes severus, Mughiphantes styriacus, Pelecopsis alpica, Scotophaeus nanus, Troglohyphantes novicordis, Troglohyphantes tauriscus, beside 9 subendemic harvestman and 38 subendemic spider species have been recorded from Austria. Hot-spots of endemism in the Eastern Alps are the north-eastern (Ennstaler Alps and southern Calcareous Alps (Karawanken, Karnische Alps and the Central Alps (Hohe Tauern, Gurktaler Alps, Ötztaler and Stubaier Alps. Most of the endemic arachnid species occur from the nival down to the montane zone. Important habitats are rocky areas, caves and woodlands. High absolute numbers and percentages of endemics can be found within the harvestman families Cladonychiidae, Ischyropsalididae and Nemastomatidae and in the spider genera Lepthyphantes s. l. and Troglohyphantes. The conservation status of these highly endangered taxa – 85 % of the spider species and 100 % of the harvestman taxa are endangered in Austria – is poor.

  17. Treatment effect on biases in size estimation in spider phobia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shiban, Youssef; Fruth, Martina B; Pauli, Paul; Kinateder, Max; Reichenberger, Jonas; Mühlberger, Andreas

    2016-12-01

    The current study investigates biases in size estimations made by spider-phobic and healthy participants before and after treatment. Forty-one spider-phobic and 20 healthy participants received virtual reality (VR) exposure treatment and were then asked to rate the size of a real spider immediately before and, on average, 15days after the treatment. During the VR exposure treatment skin conductance response was assessed. Prior to the treatment, both groups tended to overestimate the size of the spider, but this size estimation bias was significantly larger in the phobic group than in the control group. The VR exposure treatment reduced this bias, which was reflected in a significantly smaller size rating post treatment. However, the size estimation bias was unrelated to the skin conductance response. Our results confirm the hypothesis that size estimation by spider-phobic patients is biased. This bias is not stable over time and can be decreased with adequate treatment. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Interactions Between the Chilean Recluse Spider (Araneae: Sicariidae) and an Araneophagic Spitting Spider (Araneae: Scytodidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Canals, Mauricio; Arriagada, Nicolás; Solís, Rigoberto

    2015-03-01

    In Chile, all necrotic arachnidism is attributed to the Chilean recluse spider, Loxosceles laeta Nicolet, a species that shares the microenvironmental habitats with the spitting spider Scytodes globula Nicolet. The latter species has been proposed as a potential predator of L. laeta. For this research, we studied the interaction between both species during individual encounters to assess the possibility of population regulation of L. laeta cohorts exposed to this potential predator. We found that in most encounters S. globula prevailed. Also, S. globula preys on spiderlings of L. laeta, with a population effect on cohorts of this species. These findings suggest that S. globula may be influencing L. laeta populations in central Chile. The population regulation of L. laeta by predation would be important because this species, in the absence of predators, has a high reproductive rate, and it can maintain populations of large size. However according to our results, although S. globula may aid in the reduction of both spiderling and adult L. laeta populations, and perhaps other Loxosceles species, it is insufficient for biological control of Loxosceles species. Its presence together with other control measures such as hygiene of the rooms can help to decrease loxoscelism incidence. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  19. Prey interception drives web invasion and spider size determines successful web takeover in nocturnal orb-web spiders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wenjin Gan

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available A striking feature of web-building spiders is the use of silk to make webs, mainly for prey capture. However, building a web is energetically expensive and increases the risk of predation. To reduce such costs and still have access to abundant prey, some web-building spiders have evolved web invasion behaviour. In general, no consistent patterns of web invasion have emerged and the factors determining web invasion remain largely unexplored. Here we report web invasion among conspecifics in seven nocturnal species of orb-web spiders, and examined the factors determining the probability of webs that could be invaded and taken over by conspecifics. About 36% of webs were invaded by conspecifics, and 25% of invaded webs were taken over by the invaders. A web that was built higher and intercepted more prey was more likely to be invaded. Once a web was invaded, the smaller the size of the resident spider, the more likely its web would be taken over by the invader. This study suggests that web invasion, as a possible way of reducing costs, may be widespread in nocturnal orb-web spiders.

  20. Influence of spider silk on refugia preferences of the recluse spiders Loxosceles reclusa and Loxosceles laeta (Araneae: Sicariidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vetter, Richard S; Rust, Michael K

    2010-06-01

    In a previous experimental study, recluse spiders Loxosceles reclusa Gertsch and Mulaik and Loxosceles laeta (Nicolet) (Araneae: Sicariidae) preferred small cardboard refugia covered with conspecific silk compared with never-occupied refugia. Herein, we investigated some factors that might be responsible for this preference using similar cardboard refugia. When the two Loxosceles species were given choices between refugia previously occupied by their own and by the congeneric species, neither showed a species-specific preference; however, each chose refugia coated with conspecific silk rather than those previously inhabited by a distantly related cribellate spider, Metaltella simoni (Keyserling). When L. laeta spiders were offered refugia that were freshly removed from silk donors compared with heated, aged refugia from the same silk donor, older refugia were preferred. Solvent extracts of L. laeta silk were chosen approximately as often as control refugia when a range of solvents (methylene chloride:methanol, water, and hexane) were used. However, when acetone was used on similar silk, there was a statistical preference for the control, indicating that there might be a mildly repellent aspect to acetone-washed silk. Considering the inability to show attraction to chemical aspects of fresh silk, it seems that physical attributes may be more important for selection and that there might be repellency to silk of a recently vacated spider. These findings are discussed in regard to pest management strategies to control recluse spiders.

  1. How spiders practice aggressive and Batesian mimicry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ximena J. NELSON, Robert R. JACKSON

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available To understand communication, the interests of the sender and the receiver/s of signals should be considered separately. When our goal is to understand the adaptive significance of specific responses to specific signals by the receiver, questions about signal information are useful. However, when our goal is to understand the adaptive significance to the sender of generating a signal, it may be better to envisage the receiver’s response to signals as part of the sender’s extended phenotype. By making signals, a sender interfaces with the receiver’s model of the world and indirectly manipulates its behaviour. This is especially clear in cases of mimicry, where animals use deceptive signals that indirectly manipulate the behaviour of receivers. Many animals adopt Batesian mimicry to deceive their predators, or aggressive mimicry to deceive their prey. We review examples from the lite­rature on spiders to illustrate how these phenomena, traditionally thought of as distinct, can become entangled in a web of lies [Current Zoology 58 (4: 620–629, 2012].

  2. Multivariable control of a rolling spider drone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyu, Haifeng

    The research and application of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) has been a hot topic recently. A UAV is dened as an aircraft which is designed not to carry a human pilot or operated with remote electronic input by the flight controller. In this thesis, the design of a control system for a quadcopter named Rolling Spider Drone is conducted. The thesis work presents the design of two kinds of controllers that can control the Drone to keep it balanced and track different kinds of input trajectories. The nonlinear mathematical model for the Drone is derived by the Newton-Euler method. The rotational subsystem and translational system are derived to describe the attitude and position motion of Drone. Techniques from linear control theory are employed to linearize the highly coupled and nonlinear quadcopter plant around equilibrium points and apply the linear feedback controller to stabilize the system. The controller is a digital tracking system that deploys LQR for system stability design. Fixed gain and adaptive gain scheduled controllers are developed and compared with different LQR weights. Step references and reference trajectories involving signicant variation for the yaw angle in the xy-plane and three-dimensional spaces are tracked in the simulation. The physical implementation and an output feedback controller are considered for future work.

  3. Efficient Journaling for the Spider Storage System

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oral, H Sarp [ORNL; Wang, Feiyi [ORNL; Shipman, Galen M [ORNL; Dillow, David A [ORNL; Miller, Ross G [ORNL; Drokin, Oleg [ORNL

    2003-01-01

    Journaling is a widely used technique to increase file system robustness against meta data and/or data corruptions. While the overhead of journaling can be negligible for small-scale file systems, we found that two aspects of local back-end file system journaling significantly lower the overall performance of a large-scale parallel file system such as Lustre: extra head seeks and serialization of incoming client requests. Journal transactions reside on a separate area of the disk that the file data, and each commit of the journal requires a head seek. Incoming client requests become serialized and take a latency hit by waiting for a commit to occur before the reply is sent. In this paper we present two different approaches to increase the local back-end file system journaling efficiency, thus increasing the overall aggregate parallel file system efficiency. First, we present a hardware-based solution where a solid-state device is used as an external journaling device to minimize the disk head seek. Second, we introduce a software-based optimization to allow asynchronously commit multiple journal transactions on the local back-end file system to minimize the penalty of serialization. Both our solutions are experimentally tested on Oak Ridge National Laboratory's large-scale Spider storage system and our tests show that both methods nearly double the overall parallel write performance.

  4. Development of locomotion in a subsocial spider.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahn, Soon Kil; Kim, Kil Won

    2015-04-01

    Following consumption of their mother, the subsocial spider Amaurobius ferox remain together, exhibiting distinctive behaviours in response to intruders into the natal nest. We examined the ontogeny and characteristics of locomotory behaviours in A. ferox during this post-maternal social period. Locomotion of the spiderlings, elicited by the introduction of a cricket larva into the natal web, fell into two categories: 'abrupt locomotion' (AL) and 'ordinary locomotion' (OL). AL involved rapid and linear movement, whereas OL involved slower motion, not necessarily in a straight line. Both types of locomotion varied with spiderling age. AL appeared for only a limited period of time whereas the frequency of OL increased linearly over time. AL occurred more collectively than OL: the percentage of participants in a bout of locomotion was 18.67±17.71% vs. 10.22±9.33%. The collective tendency of AL increased up until the seventh day and then decreased, whereas that of OL progressively decreased. The direction of AL responses to the intruder did not vary over time; however, for OL, movements towards increased in frequency over time. Locomotory responses also varied with the intensity of intruder movement. Including transient behaviours, the chronology of different behaviours suggests that behavioural development in A. ferox involves maternal influences and weakens group cohesion and collective tendency. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Final design of thermal diagnostic system in SPIDER ion source

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brombin, M., E-mail: matteo.brombin@igi.cnr.it; Dalla Palma, M.; Pasqualotto, R.; Pomaro, N. [Consorzio RFX, Corso Stati Uniti 4, I-35127 Padova (Italy)

    2016-11-15

    The prototype radio frequency source of the ITER heating neutral beams will be first tested in SPIDER test facility to optimize H{sup −} production, cesium dynamics, and overall plasma characteristics. Several diagnostics will allow to fully characterise the beam in terms of uniformity and divergence and the source, besides supporting a safe and controlled operation. In particular, thermal measurements will be used for beam monitoring and system protection. SPIDER will be instrumented with mineral insulated cable thermocouples, both on the grids, on other components of the beam source, and on the rear side of the beam dump water cooled elements. This paper deals with the final design and the technical specification of the thermal sensor diagnostic for SPIDER. In particular the layout of the diagnostic, together with the sensors distribution in the different components, the cables routing and the conditioning and acquisition cubicles are described.

  6. Adhesion modulation using glue droplet spreading in spider capture silk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amarpuri, Gaurav; Zhang, Ci; Blackledge, Todd A; Dhinojwala, Ali

    2017-05-01

    Orb web spiders use sticky capture spiral silk to retain prey in webs. Capture spiral silk is composed of an axial fibre of flagelliform silk covered with glue droplets that are arranged in a beads-on-a-string morphology that allows multiple droplets to simultaneously extend and resist pull off. Previous studies showed that the adhesion of capture silk is responsive to environmental humidity, increasing up to an optimum humidity that varied among different spider species. The maximum adhesion was hypothesized to occur when the viscoelasticity of the glue optimized contributions from glue spreading and bulk cohesion. In this study, we show how glue droplet shape during peeling contributes significantly to capture silk adhesion. Both overspreading and underspreading of glue droplets reduces adhesion through changes in crack propagation and failure regime. Understanding the mechanism of stimuli-responsive adhesion of spider capture silk will lead to new designs for smarter adhesives. © 2017 The Author(s).

  7. Vision in the nocturnal wandering spider Leucorchestris arenicola (Araneae: Sparassidae)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nørgaard, Thomas; Nilsson, Dan-Eric; Henschel, Joh R

    2008-01-01

    At night the Namib Desert spider Leucorchestris arenicola performs long-distance homing across its sand dune habitat. By disabling all or pairs of the spiders' eight eyes we found that homing ability was severely reduced when vision was fully abolished. Vision, therefore, seems to play a key role...... in the nocturnal navigational performances of L. arenicola. After excluding two or three pairs of eyes, the spiders were found to be able to navigate successfully using only their lateral eyes or only their anterior median eyes. Measurement of the eyes' visual fields showed that the secondary eyes combined have...... a near full (panoramic) view of the surroundings. The visual fields of the principal eyes overlap almost completely with those of the anterior lateral eyes. Electroretinogram recordings indicate that each eye type contains a single photopigment with sensitivity peaking at approximately 525 nm...

  8. Stable isotope analyses of web-spinning spider assemblages along a headwater stream in Puerto Rico

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sean P. Kelly

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Web-spinning spiders that inhabit stream channels are considered specialists of aquatic ecosystems and are major consumers of emerging aquatic insects, while other spider taxa are more commonly found in riparian forests and as a result may consume more terrestrial insects. To determine if there was a difference in spider taxa abundance between riverine web-spinning spider assemblages within the stream channel and the assemblages 10 m into the riparian forest, we compared abundances for all web-spinning spiders along a headwater stream in El Yunque National Forest in northeast Puerto Rico. By using a nonmetric dimensional scaling (NMDS abundance analysis we were able to see a clear separation of the two spider assemblages. The second objective of the study was to determine if aquatic insects contributed more to the diet of the spider assemblages closest to the stream channel and therefore stable isotope analyses of δ15N and δ13C for web-spinning spiders along with their possible prey were utilized. The results of the Bayesian mixing model (SIAR however showed little difference in the diets of riverine (0 m, riparian (10 m and upland (25 m spiders. We found that aquatic insects made up ∼50% of the diet for web-spinning spiders collected at 0 m, 10 m, and 25 m from the stream. This study highlights the importance of aquatic insects as a food source for web-spinning spiders despite the taxonomic differences in assemblages at different distances from the stream.

  9. A preliminary checklist of spiders (Araneae: Arachnida in Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary, Western Ghats, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. K. Adarsh

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available A preliminary study was conducted to document spider diversity in Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary, Idukki District, Kerala State in southern India.  The study was conducted from October to November 2012.  A total of 101 species of spiders belonging to 65 genera from 29 families were identified from the sanctuary.  This accounted for 6.98% of Indian spider species, 17.81% of Indian spider genera and 48.33% of the spider families of India.  The dominant families were Lycosidae (11 species and Araneidae (10.  Two endemic genera of Indian spiders such as Annandaliella and Neoheterophrictus were found at Chinnar, each representing one species each, and belonging to the family Theraphosidae.  A guild structure analysis of the spiders revealed seven feeding guilds such as orb weavers, stalkers, ground runners, foliage runners, sheet web builders, space web builders and ambushers. 

  10. Learning from animal sensors: the clever "design" of spider mechanoreceptors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barth, Friedrich G.

    2012-04-01

    Three types of spider sensors responding to different forms of mechanical energy are chosen to illustrate the power of evolutionary constraints to fine-tune the functional "design" of animal sensors to the particular roles they play in particular behavioral contexts. As demonstrated by the application of computational biomechanics and a fruitful cooperation between biologists and engineers there are remarkable "technical" tricks to be found by which spider tactile sensors, airflow sensors, and strain sensors are adjusted to their biologically relevant stimulus patterns. The application of such "tricks" to technical solutions of measuring problems similar to those animals have to cope with, seems both realistic and very promising.

  11. Volatile compounds from leaves of the African spider plant (Gynandropsis gynandra) with bioactivity against spider mite (Tetranychus urticae)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nyalala, Samuel Odeyo; Petersen, Mikael Agerlin; Grout, Brian William Wilson

    2013-01-01

    Previous studies have demonstrated that Gynandropsis gynandra emits acetonitrile as a foliar volatile from intact plants and isolated leaves, and that this compound is an effective spider mite repellent. This study has used gas chromatography–mass spectrometry to investigate volatile compounds...... emitted from homogenised G. gynandra leaves to evaluate their tissue acetonitrile content and to look for other compounds that might be exploited for the management of spider mites. Acetonitrile was absent from the homogenised tissues of five lines of G. gynandra, studied over two seasons. Thirteen...... volatile compounds were emitted by G. gynandra at significantly higher levels than mite-susceptible pot roses, including isothiocyanates, aldehydes, esters, alcohols and terpenes. Six representative compounds were selected to assess bioactivity. Spider mite populations were completely inactive after a 2¿h...

  12. Mechanism of diffusive transport in molecular spider models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Semenov, Oleg; Olah, Mark J.; Stefanovic, Darko

    2011-02-01

    Recent advances in single-molecule chemistry have led to designs for artificial multipedal walkers that follow tracks of chemicals. We investigate the motion of a class of walkers, called molecular spiders, which consist of a rigid chemically inert body and several flexible enzymatic legs. The legs can reversibly bind to chemical substrates on a surface and through their enzymatic action convert them to products. The legs can also reversibly bind to products, but at a different rate. Antal and Krapivsky have proposed a model for molecular spider motion over regular one-dimensional lattices [T. Antal and P. L. Krapivsky, Phys. Rev. ENATUAS1539-375510.1103/PhysRevE.76.021121 76, 021121 (2007).]. In the model the legs hop from site to site under constraints imposed by connection to a common body. The first time a leg visits a site, the site is an uncleaved substrate, and the leg hops from this site only once it has cleaved it into a product. This cleavage happens at a rate rr=1. The effect of cleavage is to slow down the hopping rate for legs that visit a site for the first time. Along with the constraints imposed on the legs, this leads to an effective bias in the direction of unvisited sites that decreases the average time needed to visit n sites. The overall motion, however, remains diffusive in the long time limit. We have reformulated the Antal-Krapivsky model as a continuous-time Markov process and simulated many traces of this process using kinetic Monte Carlo techniques. Our simulations show a previously unpredicted transient behavior wherein spiders with small r values move superdiffusively over significant distances and times. We explain this transient period of superdiffusive behavior by describing the spider process as switching between two metastates: a diffusive state D wherein the spider moves in an unbiased manner over previously visited sites, and a boundary state B wherein the spider is on the boundary between regions of visited and unvisited sites

  13. Somatic panic-attack equivalents in a community sample of Rwandan widows who survived the 1994 genocide

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagengimana, Athanase; Hinton, Devon; Bird, Bruce; Pollack, Mark; Pitman, Roger K.

    2009-01-01

    The present study is the first to attempt to determine rates of panic attacks, especially ‘somatically focused’ panic attacks, panic disorder, symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and depression levels in a population of Rwandans traumatized by the 1994 genocide. The following measures were utilized: the Rwandan Panic-Disorder Survey (RPDS); the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI); the Harvard Trauma Questionnaire (HTQ); and the PTSD Checklist (PCL). Forty of 100 Rwandan widows suffered somatically focused panic attacks during the previous 4 weeks. Thirty-five (87%) of those having panic attacks suffered panic disorder, making the rate of panic disorder for the entire sample 35%. Rwandan widows with panic attacks had greater psychopathology on all measures. Somatically focused panic-attack subtypes seem to constitute a key response to trauma in the Rwandan population. Future studies of traumatized non-Western populations should carefully assess not only somatoform disorder but also somatically focused panic attacks. PMID:12581815

  14. Spider Silk Processing for Spidroin Recovery from Crossopriza Lyoni Web

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohtar, J. A.; Ooi, W. L.; Yusuf, F.

    2018-03-01

    Spider silk is a potential biomaterial that can be used in various applications for its outstanding physicomechanical properties attributed by the spidroin composition. Efforts for commercializing spider silks have been mainly focused on the characterization of spidroins from the Entelegyne spiders for exceptional fibre construction. Hence, studies on silk proteins from the Haplogyne species remain neglected. The aim of this study is to isolate spidroin from Crossopriza lyoni web. Silk processing involved the pretreatment of fibres for the shell layer removal from the surface. A screening study was conducted to analyze the effect of temperature, incubation time and agitation speed on spidroin extraction using Ajisawa’s reagent by OFAT analysis followed by statistical optimization of the extraction process via RSM for maximal protein recovery. All parameters exerted significant effect on spidroin recovery (p<0.05) in which the maximum protein concentration (451.78 ± 0.110 µg/ml) was obtained at optimal condition of 70°C, 350 rpm and 1.25 hours. The discovery of spidroin from this study provides a basic platform for engineering spider silk to meet the demand for a variety of silk-based products in the near future.

  15. variability in condensed tannins and bitterness in spider plant ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ACSS

    Spider plant (Cleome gynandra L.) contributes considerably to the nutrition and medicines of communities in southern Africa. However, its utilisation is limited by its bitterness caused by condensed tannins. Unfortunately, processing options that reduce the bitterness also remove nutritionally and medicinally useful ...

  16. Biotechnological Trends in Spider and Scorpion Antivenom Development

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Laustsen, Andreas Hougaard; Solà, Mireia; Jappe, Emma Christine

    2016-01-01

    Spiders and scorpions are notorious for their fearful dispositions and their ability to inject venom into prey and predators, causing symptoms such as necrosis, paralysis, and excruciating pain. Information on venom composition and the toxins present in these species is growing due to an interest...

  17. Preservice Teachers' Conceptions about Animals and Particularly about Spiders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jambrina, Carmen Urones; Vacas, Jose Manuel; Sanchez-Barbudo, Miguel

    2010-01-01

    Introduction: This article explores the scientific ideas and alternative conceptions that pre-service teachers have regarding animal classification and spiders in particular. Method: The study involved 40 pre-service teachers of elementary education in Spain and the data was collected by means of questionnaires, descriptions and drawings. The…

  18. Ant-Mimicking Spiders: Strategies for Living with Social Insects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fadia Sara Ceccarelli

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Mimicry is a fascinating topic, in particular when viewed in terms of selective forces and evolutionary strategies. Mimicry is a system involving a signaller, a signal receiver, and a model and has evolved independently many times in plants and animals. There are several ways of classifying mimicry based on the interactions and cost-benefit scenarios of the parties involved. In this review, I briefly outline the dynamics of the most common types of mimicry to then apply it to some of the spider-ant associative systems known to date. In addition, this review expands on the strategies that ant-associating (in particular ant-mimicking spiders have developed to minimise the costs of living close to colonies of potentially dangerous models. The main strategy that has been noted to date is either chemical mimicry or actively avoiding contact with ants. If these strategies warrant protection for the spider (living close to potentially dangerous models, then the benefits of ant associations would outweigh the costs, and the association will prevail.

  19. Determination of PCDDs in spider webs: preliminary studies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rybak Justyna

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The application of spider webs for determination of polichlorinated dibenzo-para-dioxins (PCDDs has been studied for the first time. The aim of the studies was to find out if spider webs are suitable for such examinations as it was proved in the previous research they are excellent indicators of air pollutants. Spiders are ubiquitous, thus collection of samples is easy and non-invasive. Studies were conducted within the city of Wrocław and surroundings, one of the biggest and at the same time heaviest polluted city in Poland. Five research sites have been chosen, where spider webs were collected after 60 days of continuous exposure time. Webs belonging to two genera Tegenaria sylvestris and Tegenaria ferruginea (family Agelenidae have been chosen as they are large and very dense, thus they are very suitable for such examinations. Webs were found to retain dioxins probably mainly by external exposure. These promising results should be continued and expanded in the future research.

  20. Trial by fire: Social spider colony demographics in periodically ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Nests of social spiders of the genus Stegodyphus (Eresidae) are a prominent feature of African savannas and their size and visibility make them potentially good indicators of ecological consequences of fire. The colonies are sedentary and their nests may persist for several years, although individuals have an annual life ...

  1. Central European habitats inhabited by spiders with disjunctive distributions

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Růžička, Vlastimil

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 59, č. 2 (2011), s. 367-380 ISSN 1505-2249 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50070508 Keywords : spider s * glacial relicts * boreomontane species Subject RIV: EH - Ecology , Behaviour Impact factor: 0.506, year: 2011

  2. Ballooning behavior in the golden orbweb spider Nephilapilipes (Araneae: Nephilidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vanessa M.J. Lee

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Ballooning, a mode of aerial dispersal in spiders, is an innate behavior that requires appropriate physiological and meteorological conditions. Although only rarely reported in the golden orbweb spiders, family Nephilidae, the large geographic distributions of most nephilids—in particular of Nephila species—would imply that these spiders likely routinely disperse by ballooning in spite of giant female sizes. Here we study ballooning behavior in the golden orbweb spider Nephila pilipes (Fabricius, 1793. Specifically, we test for the propensity of spiderlings to deploy ballooning as a dispersal mechanism. We subjected a total of 59 first-instar spiderlings to a wind experiment at two wind speeds (2.17 ± 0.02 m s-1 and 3.17 ± 0.02 m s-1 under laboratory conditions. Under an average wind speed of 3.17 m s-1, none of the spiderlings exhibited pre-ballooning or ballooning behavior. However, at an average wind speed of 2.17 m s-1, 53 (89.8% spiderlings showed pre-ballooning behavior, and 17 (32.1% of the pre-ballooners ultimately ballooned. Our results concur with prior reports on spiderlings of other families that pre-ballooning behavior is a requirement for ballooning to occur. Furthermore, although we cannot rule out other dispersal mechanisms such as synanthropic spread, our findings suggest that the widespread N. pilipes uses ballooning to colonize remote oceanic islands.

  3. Spiders of the Vine Plants in Southern Moravia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucie Havlová

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Araneofauna of vineyards is relatively known in Central Europe but we have a lack of knowledge about araneofauna which occur directly on the vine plants. Our investigation was focused on spiders which live on vine plants, especially on the vine plants trunks. We investigated spiders in six vineyards in southern Moravia (Šatov, Mikulov, Popice, Morkůvky, Nosislav and Blučina. Vineyards were under different soil management, traps were placed on different parts of particular locality (terraced and plain and all localities were under integrated pest management. We employed two types of cardboard traps for spider collecting during whole vegetation season. Altogether, we collected 21 spider species which belong to seven families. The most important species was Marpissa nivoyi (Lucas, 1836, which is mentioned in the Red List as vulnerable (VU and Sibianor tantulus (Simon, 1868 which had unknown distribution in the Czech Republic. The other very interesting result is that the most common species is myrmecomorph Synageles venator (Lucas, 1836, which is scarcely recorded in such huge numbers as we documented in our study.

  4. Spiders (Araneae) as polyphagous natural enemies in orchards

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bogya, S.

    1999-01-01

    Spiders (Araneae) occur in high abundance in all terrestrial ecosystems including agro-ecosystems. They are a very heterogeneous group of animals with different hunting tactics and therefore they play very different ecological roles. At family level these tactics are rather similar thus

  5. Effects of Packaging and Storage Conditions on Quality of Spider ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The purpose of this research was to increase insight into how the seed quality of spider plant is affected by different packaging containers, seed moisture content and storage temperatures, with a view to finding out the optimal method of packaging and storing of these seeds. This study was carried out using seeds dried ...

  6. Female mating strategy during precopulatory mate guarding in spider mites

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oku, K.

    2009-01-01

    In some taxa, females choose their mates indirectly by using male combat. In the Kanzawa spider mite, Tetranychus kanzawai, adult males guard prereproductive quiescent females. In a dual choice experiment, more males first approached females already guarded by a conspecific male than approached

  7. The Spider's Web: Creativity and Survival in Dynamic Balance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, Bill

    2001-01-01

    The spider's web is presented as a model for Indigenous education and community transformation, grounded in Okanagan philosophy. Children are at the center and benefit from the influence of extended family and community. The model's relevance for language revitalization, cultural maintenance, and educational planning and assessment is discussed.…

  8. The sejugal furrow in camel spiders and acariform mites

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dunlop, Jason A.

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Camel spiders (Arachnida: Solifugae are one of the arachnid groups characterised by a prosomal dorsal shield composed of three distinct elements: the pro-, meso- and metapeltidium. These are associated respectively with prosomal appendages one to four, five, and six. What is less well known, although noted in the historical literature, is that the coxae of the 4th and 5th prosomal segments (i.e. walking legs 2 and 3 of camel spiders are also separated ventrally by a distinct membranous region, which is absent between the coxae of the other legs. We suggest that this essentially ventral division of the prosoma specifically between coxae 2 and 3 is homologous with the so-called sejugal furrow (the sejugal interval sensu van der Hammen. This division constitutes a fundamental part of the body plan in acariform mites (Arachnida: Acariformes. If homologous, this sejugal furrow could represent a further potential synapomorphy for (Solifugae + Acariformes; a relationship with increasing morphological and molecular support. Alternatively, outgroup comparison with sea spiders (Pycnogonida and certain early Palaeozoic fossils could imply that the sejugal furrow defines an older tagma, derived from a more basal grade of organisation. In this scenario the (still divided prosoma of acariform mites and camel spiders would be plesiomorphic. This interpretation challenges the textbook arachnid character of a peltidium (or ‘carapace’ covering an undivided prosoma.

  9. Czech Republic – the type material of spiders (Araneae)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Růžička, Vlastimil; Kůrka, A.; Buchar, J.; Řezáč, M.

    2005-01-01

    Roč. 174, 1-4 (2005), s. 13-64 ISSN 0139-9543 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR(CZ) IAA6007401 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50070508 Keywords : spiders * type material * Czech Republic Subject RIV: EG - Zoology

  10. Shedding light on the optical properties of spider silk fiber

    OpenAIRE

    Chow, Desmond M.; Tow, Kenny Hey; Vollrath, Fritz; Dicaire, Isabelle; Gheysens, Tom; Thevenaz, Luc

    2015-01-01

    Optical characterisation of a Nephila edulis spider dragline silk is performed. The silk fiber transmits light up to 1400 nm with a propagation loss of ∼9 dB/cm and birefringence of 8×10−3 measured at 1302 nm.

  11. 46 SPIDER WEBS AS INDICATORS OF COBALT AND LEAD ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Spider webs were collected from the indoor and outdoor of 120 sampling sites of 10 zones of Kano. Municipality. The samples were analysed for .... from 120 sampling sites in 10 sampling zones of. Kano municipality. Each sampling zone ... London (Fergusson and Ryan, 1984); New Zealand. (Fergusson et al., 1986); Kano ...

  12. Infrared and Raman Study of the Recluse Spider Silk

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, S. L.; Wang, Qijue; Xing, Zhen; Schniepp, H. C.; Qazilbash, M. M.

    Spider silk exhibits remarkable mechanical properties, such as high tensile strength and toughness. We want to gain insight into the composition and structure of spider silk to discover the origin of these properties. We are especially interested in the organization of the crystalline beta sheets that are expected to contribute to the high strength of the silk from the recluse spider, Loxosceles laeta. The recluse spider produces a silk that has a unique geometry amongst arachnids. We measure the silk's optical properties, particularly the infrared-active and Raman-active vibrations. Broadband infrared transmission spectra were collected in the spectral range between 600 cm-1 and 4000 cm-1, with light polarized parallel and perpendicular to the long axis of the silk. Raman micro-spectroscopy was performed in the spectral range 500 cm-1 and 4000 cm- 1 with a 514 nm laser. The infrared and Raman vibrational modes are fit with Lorentzian and pseudo-Voigt functions. The vibrational modes are assigned to specific structures and electronic bonds in the silk. This work was supported by NASA/ Virginia Space Grant Consortium.

  13. Characteristics of the first recorded spider (Arthropoda: Arachnida fauna from Sheringal, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Farzana Khan Perveen

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The spiders (order: Aranae are an important environmental indicator and play a significant role as predators in biological control of the most of the key insect pests. The present study was conducted to establish the characteristics of the first recorded spider fauna from Sheringal, Dir Upper (DU, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP, Pakistan during June 2013-July 2014. Their 10 species belong to 7 families, and 10 genera (nt=123: total; ni=77: identified; nui=46: unidentified were recorded in the 6 quadrates, i.e., Daramdala, Doki, Guryaal, Samang, Shahoor and Sia-Sheringal of Sheringal. The largest family was Lycosidae (wolf spiders with respect to size and numbers of specimens collected (n=20, which contained Arctosa littorali Simon, 1897; Hippasa partita Takidar, 1970; Pardosa distincta Backwall, 1867, while the smallest family was Gnphosidae (ground spiders (n=3 with Gnaphosa eucalyptus Ghafoor and Beg, 2002; while other families Sparassidae (huntsman spiders (n=19 Halconia insignis Thorell, 1836, and Isopeda tuhogniga Barrion and Litsinger, 1995, Opilionidae (harvestmen spiders (n=12 Hadrobunus grandis Sundevall, 1833; Pholcidae (cellar spider (n=10 have Crossopriza lyoni Blackwall, 1867; Hersiliidae (two-tailed spiders (n=6 is having Harsilia savignyi Lucas, 1836; (n=5 with Araneus diadematus Clerck, 1757 were recorded. It was concluded that 50% of the spiders collected from the study area were venomous. A detail study is required for further exploration of spider fauna of Sheringal, KP, Pakistan with special reference to their taxonomical, physiological and ecological characteristics.

  14. Black Culture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Angela Khristin Brown

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available The migration of blacks in North America through slavery became united.  The population of blacks past downs a tradition of artist through art to native born citizens. The art tradition involved telling stories to each generation in black families. The black culture elevated by tradition created hope to determine their personal freedom to escape from poverty of enslavement and to establish a way of life through tradition. A way of personal freedoms was through getting a good education that lead to a better foundation and a better way of life.

  15. Evaluating Stem Cell Response to a Spider Silk Scaffold

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hafner, Katherine Lee

    Micropatterning on a surface using fibers, channels, and troughs, can act as an effective means of inducing cell attachment and alignment. These morphological and pattern changes as a response to physical cues can impact the potential that a cell has to differentiate into a different cell line. This thesis evaluated the response of human dental pulp stem cells (DPSCs), and other cell types, to spider dragline silk fibers, a potential scaffold material for tissue regeneration, and further observed the effects of morphology, orientation, and composition of silk on the adherence of cells. Several cell lines were studied in this thesis, including adipose derived stem cells (ADSCs), osteoblasts (7F2s), and fibroblasts (3T3s), but DPSCs were the main cell type of interest. This is due to the fact that DPSCs are a proposed source of stem cells for nerve regeneration based on their close embryonic origin to neurons and the ease with which DPSCs can be obtained from a donor. The cells' morphologies and spread patterns were characterized after they were plated onto Nephila clavipes dragline fibers in media. The inclusion of 3T3s and 7F2s in this study allowed for both direct comparisons to prior published work and a qualitative comparison to the morphology of the DPSCs. After twelve days, the DPSCs exhibited greater relative alignment and adherence to the spider dragline fibers than the 3T3s and 7F2s when silk was wrapped in an aligned orientation rather than a random orientation. The impact of a common sterilization method (ultraviolet light) on the spider dragline fiber surface and subsequent cell response to this modified surface was also characterized. Exposure of the silk to ultraviolet light did not have a measureable effect on cell alignment, but it did eliminate bacterial growth and changed fiber surface roughness. Spiders' exposure to stressful environments did not have an effect on silk to impair cell alignment or adhesion, and synthetic recombinant protein silk

  16. Reversed sex change by widowed males in polygynous and protogynous fishes: female removal experiments in the field

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuwamura, Tetsuo; Suzuki, Shohei; Kadota, Tatsuru

    2011-12-01

    Sex change, either protogyny (female to male) or protandry (male to female), is well known among fishes, but evidence of bidirectional sex change or reversed sex change in natural populations is still very limited. This is the first report on female removal experiments for polygnous and protogynous fish species to induce reversed sex change in the widowed males in the field. We removed all of the females and juveniles from the territories of dominant males in the cleaner wrasse Labroides dimidiatus (Labridae) and the rusty angelfish Centropyge ferrugata (Pomacanthidae) on the coral reefs of Okinawa. In both species, if new females or juveniles did not immigrate into the territories of the widowed males, some of them emigrated to form male-male pairs. When a male-male pair formed, the smaller, subordinate partner began to perform female sexual behaviours ( n = 4 in L. dimidiatus; n = 2 in C. ferrugata) and, finally, released eggs ( n = 1, respectively). Thus, the reversed sex change occurred in the widowed males according to the change of their social status. These results suggest that such female removal experiments will contribute to the discovery of reversed sex change in the field also in other polygnous and protogynous species.

  17. Global patterns of guild composition and functional diversity of spiders.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pedro Cardoso

    Full Text Available The objectives of this work are: (1 to define spider guilds for all extant families worldwide; (2 test if guilds defined at family level are good surrogates of species guilds; (3 compare the taxonomic and guild composition of spider assemblages from different parts of the world; (4 compare the taxonomic and functional diversity of spider assemblages and; (5 relate functional diversity with habitat structure. Data on foraging strategy, prey range, vertical stratification and circadian activity was collected for 108 families. Spider guilds were defined by hierarchical clustering. We searched for inconsistencies between family guild placement and the known guild of each species. Richness and abundance per guild before and after correcting guild placement were compared, as were the proportions of each guild and family between all possible pairs of sites. Functional diversity per site was calculated based on hierarchical clustering. Eight guilds were discriminated: (1 sensing, (2 sheet, (3 space, and (4 orb web weavers; (5 specialists; (6 ambush, (7 ground, and (8 other hunters. Sixteen percent of the species richness corresponding to 11% of all captured individuals was incorrectly attributed to a guild by family surrogacy; however, the correlation of uncorrected vs. corrected guilds was invariably high. The correlation of guild richness or abundances was generally higher than the correlation of family richness or abundances. Functional diversity was not always higher in the tropics than in temperate regions. Families may potentially serve as ecological surrogates for species. Different families may present similar roles in the ecosystems, with replacement of some taxa by other within the same guild. Spiders in tropical regions seem to have higher redundancy of functional roles and/or finer resource partitioning than in temperate regions. Although species and family diversity were higher in the tropics, functional diversity seems to be also

  18. SPIDERS (ARANEI OF THE REPUBLIC OF SOUTH OSSETIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander V. Ponomarev

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Aim. Until recently, spider fauna of the Republic of South Ossetia has been the least studied among the regional araneofaunas of the Caucasus. According to the literature data, as little as 30 spider species have been known from the republic’s territory (Mkheidze, 1997, Mikhailov, 1990; Ponomarev, Dvadnenko, 2013; Trilicauscas, Komarov, 2014. Therefore, the aim of the present article is to summarize available data on the spider fauna of South Ossetia.Location. Republic of South Ossetia.Methods. The material was collected in various districts of South Ossetia in 2011-2014 by Yu.E. Komarov. Mainly, the collecting was performed in the city of Tskhinvali and its environs, and in the South Ossetian State Reserve. Spiders were sampled with pitfall traps and sweep netting. The time of traps’ exposure is April–December.Results and main conclusions. To date, the spider fauna of the Republic of South Ossetia includes 230 species from 29 families. 222 species were registered by the authors, eight species (Clubiona pseudosimilis, Gnaphosa lugubris, Linyphia hortensis, Neriene peltata, Geolycosa vultuosa, Pardosa azerifalcata, Ero aphana, and Philodromus rufus are known from the literature only. Seven species are new to the Caucasus (Clubiona pseudosimilis, Gnaphosa lugubris, Linyphia hortensis, Neriene peltata, Geolycosa vultuosa, Pardosa azerifalcata, Ero aphana, and Philodromus rufus. Of these, two species were known earlier only from Turkey (Pardosa consimilis, Ozyptila spirembolus, and one species (Tegenaria pseudolyncea only from Azerbaijan. Against the background of the widespread species predominance, the Caucasian element is small and presented by twelve species (Tegenaria pseudolyncea, Dysdera tkibuliensis, Haplodrassus caucasius, Zelotes khostensis, Mansuphantes ovalis, Sintula oseticus, Tenuiphantes teberdaensis, Pardosa azerifalcata, P. caucasica, Piratula hurkai, Trochosa cachetiensis, and Xysticus ukrainicus.

  19. Global Patterns of Guild Composition and Functional Diversity of Spiders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardoso, Pedro; Pekár, Stano; Jocqué, Rudy; Coddington, Jonathan A.

    2011-01-01

    The objectives of this work are: (1) to define spider guilds for all extant families worldwide; (2) test if guilds defined at family level are good surrogates of species guilds; (3) compare the taxonomic and guild composition of spider assemblages from different parts of the world; (4) compare the taxonomic and functional diversity of spider assemblages and; (5) relate functional diversity with habitat structure. Data on foraging strategy, prey range, vertical stratification and circadian activity was collected for 108 families. Spider guilds were defined by hierarchical clustering. We searched for inconsistencies between family guild placement and the known guild of each species. Richness and abundance per guild before and after correcting guild placement were compared, as were the proportions of each guild and family between all possible pairs of sites. Functional diversity per site was calculated based on hierarchical clustering. Eight guilds were discriminated: (1) sensing, (2) sheet, (3) space, and (4) orb web weavers; (5) specialists; (6) ambush, (7) ground, and (8) other hunters. Sixteen percent of the species richness corresponding to 11% of all captured individuals was incorrectly attributed to a guild by family surrogacy; however, the correlation of uncorrected vs. corrected guilds was invariably high. The correlation of guild richness or abundances was generally higher than the correlation of family richness or abundances. Functional diversity was not always higher in the tropics than in temperate regions. Families may potentially serve as ecological surrogates for species. Different families may present similar roles in the ecosystems, with replacement of some taxa by other within the same guild. Spiders in tropical regions seem to have higher redundancy of functional roles and/or finer resource partitioning than in temperate regions. Although species and family diversity were higher in the tropics, functional diversity seems to be also influenced by

  20. Synthetic Spider Silk Production on a Laboratory Scale

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsia, Yang; Gnesa, Eric; Pacheco, Ryan; Kohler, Kristin; Jeffery, Felicia; Vierra, Craig

    2012-01-01

    As society progresses and resources become scarcer, it is becoming increasingly important to cultivate new technologies that engineer next generation biomaterials with high performance properties. The development of these new structural materials must be rapid, cost-efficient and involve processing methodologies and products that are environmentally friendly and sustainable. Spiders spin a multitude of different fiber types with diverse mechanical properties, offering a rich source of next generation engineering materials for biomimicry that rival the best manmade and natural materials. Since the collection of large quantities of natural spider silk is impractical, synthetic silk production has the ability to provide scientists with access to an unlimited supply of threads. Therefore, if the spinning process can be streamlined and perfected, artificial spider fibers have the potential use for a broad range of applications ranging from body armor, surgical sutures, ropes and cables, tires, strings for musical instruments, and composites for aviation and aerospace technology. In order to advance the synthetic silk production process and to yield fibers that display low variance in their material properties from spin to spin, we developed a wet-spinning protocol that integrates expression of recombinant spider silk proteins in bacteria, purification and concentration of the proteins, followed by fiber extrusion and a mechanical post-spin treatment. This is the first visual representation that reveals a step-by-step process to spin and analyze artificial silk fibers on a laboratory scale. It also provides details to minimize the introduction of variability among fibers spun from the same spinning dope. Collectively, these methods will propel the process of artificial silk production, leading to higher quality fibers that surpass natural spider silks. PMID:22847722

  1. Brown Spider (Loxosceles genus Venom Toxins: Tools for Biological Purposes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Senff-Ribeiro

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Venomous animals use their venoms as tools for defense or predation. These venoms are complex mixtures, mainly enriched of proteic toxins or peptides with several, and different, biological activities. In general, spider venom is rich in biologically active molecules that are useful in experimental protocols for pharmacology, biochemistry, cell biology and immunology, as well as putative tools for biotechnology and industries. Spider venoms have recently garnered much attention from several research groups worldwide. Brown spider (Loxosceles genus venom is enriched in low molecular mass proteins (5–40 kDa. Although their venom is produced in minute volumes (a few microliters, and contain only tens of micrograms of protein, the use of techniques based on molecular biology and proteomic analysis has afforded rational projects in the area and permitted the discovery and identification of a great number of novel toxins. The brown spider phospholipase-D family is undoubtedly the most investigated and characterized, although other important toxins, such as low molecular mass insecticidal peptides, metalloproteases and hyaluronidases have also been identified and featured in literature. The molecular pathways of the action of these toxins have been reported and brought new insights in the field of biotechnology. Herein, we shall see how recent reports describing discoveries in the area of brown spider venom have expanded biotechnological uses of molecules identified in these venoms, with special emphasis on the construction of a cDNA library for venom glands, transcriptome analysis, proteomic projects, recombinant expression of different proteic toxins, and finally structural descriptions based on crystallography of toxins.

  2. Behavioural and Glucocorticoid Responses of a Captive Group of Spider Monkeys to Short-Term Variation in Food Presentation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rangel-Negrín, Ariadna; Flores-Escobar, Elizabeth; Coyohua-Fuentes, Alejandro; Chavira-Ramírez, David Roberto; Canales-Espinosa, Domingo; Dias, Pedro Américo D

    2015-01-01

    The presentation of food may affect feeding competition and the well-being of captive social species. We hypothesized that feeding competition in a captive group of 5 black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi) should increase in response to certain food presentations in terms of size, distribution and quality of food, and that higher feeding competition should lead to an increase in agonism and physiological stress (measured by faecal glucocorticoid metabolites, FGCM) as well as to a decrease in affiliation, proximity among individuals and feeding activity. We used 5 experimental treatments representing different combinations of size, distribution and quality of food. We observed social interactions for 100 h, collected 6,500 proximity and feeding activity records, and gathered 226 faecal samples. When food was clumped, individuals spent less time feeding, and there was also significant individual variation in feeding activity within treatments. FGCM levels were higher when food was clumped. These results are probably linked to an increase in feeding competition when food is concentrated. At least in small groups of spider monkeys, dispersing food in two feeding stations may be sufficient to decrease differences among individuals in priority of access to food resources, hence reducing physiological stress and interindividual differences in feeding activity. © 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  3. Age-dependent changes in fecal 17beta-estradiol and progesterone concentrations in female spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernández-López, L; Cerda-Molina, A L; Chavira-Ramírez, R; Mondragón-Ceballos, R

    2010-03-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate whether sex steroids decreased with age in female black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi). Fecal concentrations of 17beta-estradiol and progesterone (five samples/wk) and the number of ovulatory and anovulatory cycles were compared between adult (n=3) and aged females (n=2). All animals (regardless of age) had higher 17beta-estradiol concentrations during the fertile than the nonfertile phases. However, during the fertile phase, concentrations of this hormone were significantly higher in adult females. Conversely, progesterone concentrations varied normally throughout the menstrual cycle in both adult and aged animals, with no significant difference between age classes. Similarly, there was no significant effect of age on the number of ovulatory and anovulatory cycles. In conclusion, we inferred that the aged female spider monkeys did not reach menopause, instead they remained in a perimenopausal period characterized by changes in fecal concentrations of ovarian steroids and hypothalamus-hypophysis-ovary axis activity, as well as irregular menstrual flows, for prolonged intervals. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Black Cohosh

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... who have had hormone-sensitive conditions such as breast cancer or for pregnant women or nursing mothers. Black cohosh should not be confused with blue cohosh (Caulophyllum thalictroides) , which has different effects and may not be safe. Black cohosh has ...

  5. Research on Artificial Spider Web Model for Farmland Wireless Sensor Network

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jun Wang

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Through systematic analysis of the structural characteristics and invulnerability of spider web, this paper explores the possibility of combining the advantages of spider web such as network robustness and invulnerability with farmland wireless sensor network. A universally applicable definition and mathematical model of artificial spider web structure are established. The comparison between artificial spider web and traditional networks is discussed in detail. The simulation result shows that the networking structure of artificial spider web is better than that of traditional networks in terms of improving the overall reliability and invulnerability of communication system. A comprehensive study on the advantage characteristics of spider web has important theoretical and practical significance for promoting the invulnerability research of farmland wireless sensor network.

  6. Loss of legs: is it or not a handicap for an orb-weaving spider?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pasquet, Alain; Anotaux, Mylène; Leborgne, Raymond

    2011-07-01

    Leg loss is a common phenomenon in spiders, and according to the species 5% to 40% of the adults can present at least one missing leg. There is no possibility of regeneration after adult moult and the animal must manage with its missing appendages until its death. With the loss of one or more legs, female orb-weaving spiders can be penalized twice: firstly, because the legs are necessary for web construction and secondly, the legs are essential for the control of the prey after its interception by the web. During development, spiders may be also penalized because regeneration has energetic costs that take away resources for survival, growth and reproduction. All these consequences should influence negatively the development of the spider and thus its fitness. We investigated the impact of leg loss in the orb-weaving spider, Zygiella x-notata by studying its frequency in a natural population and web building and prey capture behaviours in laboratory. In field populations, 9.5% to 13%, of the adult females presented the loss of one or more legs; the majority of individuals had lost only one leg (in 48% of cases, a first one). Leg loss seems to affect all the adult spiders, as there is no difference of mass between intact spiders and those with missing leg. Data obtained with laboratory-reared spiders, showed that the loss of legs due to the moult is rare (less than 1%). Considering changes in web design, spiders with missing legs decreased their silk investment, increased the distance between spiral turns but did not change the capture surface of the web. Under our laboratory experimental conditions, spiders with one or two lost legs did not present any difference in prey capture efficiency. In laboratory conditions, spiders with lost leg(s) did not show any difference in egg sac production or in longevity (adult lifespan) compared to intact spiders.

  7. Evaluation of fixative solutions for ultrastructural analysis of brown spider Loxosceles intermedia (araneae: sicariidae) tissues

    OpenAIRE

    Costa-Ayub,C. L. S.; Faraco,C. D.; Freire,C. A.

    2006-01-01

    In view of the widely varying compositions of fixative solutions used for studying spiders, five different fixative formulas were tested for fixing male brown-spider (Loxosceles intermedia) gonad tissues. The brown spider represents a public health problem in Curitiba (Paraná State, Brazil). Morphological study of its gonads may aid in understanding the reproductive strategies of this species, and possibly in developing a reproduction control program. The fixatives tested contained glutaralde...

  8. On the predation of fly, Chrysomya rufifacies (Macquart) by a spider, Oxyopes sp. Latreille (Oxyopidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heo, C C; Mohamad, A M; John, J; Baharudin, O

    2008-04-01

    During a forensic entomological study conducted in a palm oil plantation in Tg.Sepat, Selangor in September 2007, a spider (Arachnida), Oxyopes sp. (Oxyopidae) was found to predate on a calliphorid fly (Chrysomya rufifacies). The female spider laid a silk thread, or "drag line", behind it as it moved. This spider bites its prey by using a pairs of chelicerae, and injecting venom into the fly. The fly was moving its wing trying to escape, however, it succumbed to the deadly bite.

  9. Exploring of the first recorded spider (Arachenida: Aranae) species of Sheringal, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan

    OpenAIRE

    Farzana Perveen; Numan Khan

    2015-01-01

    The spiders (Arthropoada: Arachenida) are one of the groups of grasping animals. Their carapaces are found on the dorsal side of the cephalothorax, which is an important characteristic of spiders. The present study was conducted to explore the first recorded spider species (nti=75) of Sheringal, Dir Upper (DU), Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), Dir Upper, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. The 10 genera with 10 species under 7 families were recorded from June 2013-July 2014. According to length of legs, th...

  10. Exploring of the first recorded spider (Arachenida: Aranae species of Sheringal, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Farzana Perveen

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available The spiders (Arthropoada: Arachenida are one of the groups of grasping animals. Their carapaces are found on the dorsal side of the cephalothorax, which is an important characteristic of spiders. The present study was conducted to explore the first recorded spider species (nti=75 of Sheringal, Dir Upper (DU, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP, Dir Upper, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. The 10 genera with 10 species under 7 families were recorded from June 2013-July 2014. According to length of legs, the largest spider was the huntsman spider, Halconia insignis Thorell having length of the first leg was 1.9±0.20, however, the same of the last leg was 1.44±0.25 (n=9. In the same contest, the smallest spider was the ground spider, Gnaphosa eucalyptus Ghafoor and Beg having length of the first leg was 0.4±0.08, while the same of the last leg was 0.4±0.08 (n=3. According to length of cephalothorax and abdomen, the largest spider was the wolf spider, Hippasa partita Takidar having length of the cephalothorax was 1.1±0.01, however, the same of the abdomen was 0.7±0.1 (n=6. In the same contest, the smallest spider was the harvestmen, Hadrobunus grandis Sundevall having length of the cephalothorax was 0.1±0.04, while the same of the abdomen was 0.3±0.04 (n=12. During present research, 10 spider species of Sheringal with different sizes were explored. The present research will be useful to educate and create awareness about spiders in the people of Sheringal.

  11. Ontogenesis, gender, and molting influence the venom yield in the spider Coremiocnemis tropix (Araneae, Theraphosidae)

    OpenAIRE

    Herzig, Volker

    2010-01-01

    The demand for spider venom increases along with the growing popularity of venoms-based research. A deeper understanding of factors that influence the venom yield in spiders would therefore be of interest to both commercial venom suppliers and research facilities. The present study addresses the influence of several factors on the venom yield by systematically analyzing the data obtained from 1773 electrical milkings of the Australian theraphosid spider Coremiocnemis tropix. Gender and ontoge...

  12. Diet-dependent fecundity of the spiders Atypena formosana and Pardosa pseudoannulata, predators in irrigated rice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sigsgaard, Lene; Toft, Søren; Villareal, Sylvia

    2001-01-01

    of Collembola and D. melanogaster had the highest quality for both spiders, the BPH-GLH-Collembola and the full mixed diets were intermediate in quality, the quality of the BPH diet was intermediate to low and quality of the GLH and BPH-GLH diets was low. There need not be a contradiction between low dietary...... value of hoppers and successful natural biological control provided that the nutritional needs of the spiders are met by sufficient alternative prey. The hopper-spider relationship is comparable to that of aphids and spiders in temperate cereals, suggesting that low dietary quality of Homopterans...

  13. Methods of assembling and disassembling spider and burnable poison rod structures for nuclear reactors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Edwards, G.T.; Schluderberg, D.C.

    1981-01-01

    A technique is provided for engaging and disengaging burnable poison rods from a spider in a nuclear reactor fuel assembly. A cap on the end of each of the burnable poison rods is provided with a shank or stem that is received in a respective bore formed in the spider. A frangible flange secures the shank and rod to the spider. Pressing the shank in the direction of the bore axis by means, e.g., of a plate ruptures the frangible flange to release the rod from the spider. (author)

  14. Functional Group of Spiders in Cultivated Landscape Dominated by Paddy Fields in West Java, Indonesia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I WAYAN SUANA

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Distribution of spiders in all colonized environments is limited by biotic and abiotic factors requiring adaptations with respect to, for example microhabitat choice and hunting behavior. These two factors were frequently used to group spiders into functional groups. In this study our objectives were to (i group of genera of spiders into functional group based on their microhabitat specificity, hunting behavior, and daily activity; and (ii compare the number and composition of functional group of spider at each habitat type and period of paddy growth. The study was conducted at a landscape dominated by paddy fields in Cianjur Watershed for a period of 9 months. Four different habitat types (paddy, vegetable, non-crop, and mixed garden, were sampled using five trapping techniques (pitfall traps, farmcop suction, sweep netting, yellow-pan traps, and sticky traps. The Unweighted Pair-Group Average and the Euclidean Distances were used to generate dendrogram of functional group of spider. We found 14 functional groups of spider at genus level. The number of functional group of spider at four habitat types was differing, but the composition was similar, because all habitats were closed to each other. Habitat structure diversity and disturbance level influenced the number of functional group of spider. Different architecture of vegetation and availability of differ prey during paddy growth, causing the composition of functional group of spider in each period of paddy growth was changed, although its number was unchanged.

  15. Spiders do not evoke greater early posterior negativity in the event-related potential as snakes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Hongshen; Kubo, Kenta; Kawai, Nobuyuki

    2014-09-10

    It has been long believed that both snakes and spiders are archetypal fear stimuli for humans. Furthermore, snakes have been assumed as stronger threat cues for nonhuman primates. However, it is still unclear whether spiders hold a special status in human perception. The current study explored to what extent spider pictures draw early visual attention [as assessed with early posterior negativity (EPN)] when compared with insects similar to spiders. To measure the EPN, participants watched a random rapid serial presentation of pictures, which consisted of two conditions: spider condition (spider, wasp, bumblebee, beetle) and snake condition (snake, bird). EPN amplitudes revealed no significant difference between spider, wasp, bumblebee, and beetle pictures, whereas EPN amplitudes were significantly larger for snake pictures relative to bird pictures. In addition, EPN amplitudes were significantly larger for snake pictures relative to spider pictures. These results suggest that the early visual attentional capture of animate objects is stronger for snakes, whereas spiders do not appear to hold special early attentional value.

  16. Black Tea

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... leaves of the same plant, has some different properties. Black tea is used for improving mental alertness ... that slow blood clotting include aspirin, clopidogrel (Plavix), diclofenac (Voltaren, Cataflam, others), ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, others), naproxen ( ...

  17. A Spider That Lays Its Eggs in Rows

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert L. Edwards

    2000-01-01

    Full Text Available The small (2.5-3.0 mm, colorful metine spider, Homalometa nigritarsis Simon 1897, Family Tetragnathidae, has previously been reported from northern Mexico, Panama and the southern islands of the Lesser Antilles (Levi 1986. In the rain forest of northeastern Puerto Rico it is most frequently found with webbing on the larger outer concave surfaces of pendulous leaves. H. nigritarsis typically makes a circular, relatively flat retreat within which the female deposits two parallel rows of naked eggs. The rows are produced at intervals; as one row hatches another replaces it shortly thereafter. Evidence of up to four generations of rows has been observed. Above the retreat, and closely aligned with it, the spider builds a nearly invisible, delicate orb web, typically from edge to edge of the leaf (Fig. 1a and b. While retaining the traditional orb-web, H. nigritarsis has adopted a unique habitat and set of life history features.

  18.  “Spiders and Webs in American Literature”

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vincent Dussol

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available From Jonathan Edwards to Jorie Graham, spiders are strikingly present in American literature. The purpose of this article is first to show how that theme may have become something of a national tradition as very different writers, all of them careful observers of aranae, answered one another through the years. It is very likely that the attention paid to spiders by American authors was increased by those Native American myths in which spiders are a central figure. More than occasionally, on the female side of the American counter-culture, especially among its feminist and lesbian exponents, simple activists and creative writers have harnessed the symbolic power invested in the spider by Native Americans.There may be deeper reasons accounting for American authors’ fascination with spiders. The country’s phobia of disunion is one; a nation of settlers’ acute consciousness of the precariousness of its occupation of the territory is another. In demonstrating outstanding skills for adjustment to unknown places, spiders epitomize a form of identity permanence. The predominantly positive character of spider symbols in American literature will occasionally be inverted. Following the national logic of checks and balances, any web covering the whole of the United States will tend to come under suspicion.This study ends with an inventory of cultural productions linked with spiders and webs and whose Americanness is yet to be clearly determined.De Jonathan Edwards à Jorie Graham, l’araignée apparaît dans un nombre frappant de textes littéraires américains. On a d’abord voulu tenter de montrer comment a pu se construire cette tradition thématique et faire la preuve que différents écrivains, réunis par un souci de l’observation, se sont répondus à travers elle. L’attention prêtée à l’araignée s’est certainement trouvée renforcée par les récits mythologiques des peuples premiers américains qui font de l’araignée une

  19. Comparing the rheology of native spider and silkworm spinning dope

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holland, C.; Terry, A. E.; Porter, D.; Vollrath, F.

    2006-11-01

    Silk production has evolved to be energetically efficient and functionally optimized, yielding a material that can outperform most industrial fibres, particularly in toughness. Spider silk has hitherto defied all attempts at reproduction, despite advances in our understanding of the molecular mechanisms behind its superb mechanical properties. Spun fibres, natural and man-made, rely on the extrusion process to facilitate molecular orientation and bonding. Hence a full understanding of the flow characteristics of native spinning feedstock (dope) will be essential to translate natural spinning to artificial silk production. Here we show remarkable similarity between the rheologies for native spider-dragline and silkworm-cocoon silk, despite their independent evolution and substantial differences in protein structure. Surprisingly, both dopes behave like typical polymer melts. This observation opens the door to using polymer theory to clarify our general understanding of natural silks, despite the many specializations found in different animal species.

  20. Optics of the ultraviolet reflecting scales of a jumping spider

    Science.gov (United States)

    Land, Michael F; Horwood, Julia; Lim, Matthew L.M; Li, Daiqin

    2007-01-01

    The jumping spider Cosmophasis umbratica from Singapore is strongly sexually dimorphic. The males, but not the females, reflect ultraviolet as well as green–orange light. The scales responsible for this are composed of a chitin–air–chitin sandwich in which the chitin layers are three-quarters of a wavelength thick and the air gap a quarter wavelength (where λ=600 nm, the peak wavelength of the principal reflection maximum). It is shown that this configuration produces a second reflectance peak at approximately 385 nm, accounting for the observed reflection in the ultraviolet. Other scales have a similar thickness of chitin but lack the air gap and thus produce a dull purple reflection. This novel mechanism provides the spiders with two colour signals, both of which are important in mating displays. PMID:17456453

  1. Battre sa (super) coulpe : Spider-Man (1962)

    OpenAIRE

    Tomasovic, Dick

    2016-01-01

    L’édification est l'une des grandes fonctions traditionnelles de la littérature de jeunesse. Spider-Man, héros populaire s'il en est, s'est révélé bien sûr l'ambassadeur de nombreuses valeurs sociétales américaines (le do it yourself, l'esprit d'entreprise et d'indépendance, la tolérance, la fidélité , la célébration du système éducationnel, la transmission et la solidarité intergénérationnelle, le sens des responsabilités, évidemment, etc.). Spider-Man se bat moins qu'il ne se débat. Il est ...

  2. Gravity Reception and Cardiac Function in the Spider

    Science.gov (United States)

    Finck, A.

    1985-01-01

    The following features of the arachnid gravity system were studied. (1) the absolute threshold to hyper-gz is quite low indicating fine proprioreceptive properties of the lyriform organ, the Gz/vibration detector; (2) the neurogenic heart of the spider is a good dependent variable for assessing its behavior to Gz and other stimuli which produce mechanical effects on the exoskeleton; (3) Not only is the cardiac response useful but it is now understood to be an integral part of the system which compensates for the consequences of gravity in the spider (an hydraulic leg extension); and (4) a theoretical model was proposed in which a mechanical amplifier, the leg lever, converts a weak force (at the tarsus) to a strong force (at the patella), capable of compressing the exoskeleton and consequently the lyriform receptor.

  3. Structure to function: Spider silk and human collagen

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rabotyagova, Olena S.

    Nature has the ability to assemble a variety of simple molecules into complex functional structures with diverse properties. Collagens, silks and muscles fibers are some examples of fibrous proteins with self-assembling properties. One of the great challenges facing Science is to mimic these designs in Nature to find a way to construct molecules that are capable of organizing into functional supra-structures by self-assembly. In order to do so, a construction kit consisting of molecular building blocks along with a complete understanding on how to form functional materials is required. In this current research, the focus is on spider silk and collagen as fibrous protein-based biopolymers that can shed light on how to generate nanostructures through the complex process of self-assembly. Spider silk in fiber form offers a unique combination of high elasticity, toughness, and mechanical strength, along with biological compatibility and biodegrability. Spider silk is an example of a natural block copolymer, in which hydrophobic and hydrophilic blocks are linked together generating polymers that organize into functional materials with extraordinary properties. Since silks resemble synthetic block copolymer systems, we adopted the principles of block copolymer design from the synthetic polymer literature to build block copolymers based on spider silk sequences. Moreover, we consider spider silk to be an important model with which to study the relationships between structure and properties in our system. Thus, the first part of this work was dedicated to a novel family of spider silk block copolymers, where we generated a new family of functional spider silk-like block copolymers through recombinant DNA technology. To provide fundamental insight into relationships between peptide primary sequence, block composition, and block length and observed morphological and structural features, we used these bioengineered spider silk block copolymers to study secondary structure

  4. Environmental Engineering Approaches toward Sustainable Management of Spider Mites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suzuki, Takeshi

    2012-10-26

    Integrated pest management (IPM), which combines physical, biological, and chemical control measures to complementary effect, is one of the most important approaches to environmentally friendly sustainable agriculture. To expand IPM, we need to develop new pest control measures, reinforce existing measures, and investigate interactions between measures. Continued progress in the development of environmental control technologies and consequent price drops have facilitated their integration into plant production and pest control. Here I describe environmental control technologies for the IPM of spider mites through: (1) the disturbance of photoperiod-dependent diapause by artificial light, which may lead to death in seasonal environments; (2) the use of ultraviolet radiation to kill or repel mites; and (3) the use of water vapor control for the long-term cold storage of commercially available natural enemies. Such environmental control technologies have great potential for the efficient control of spider mites through direct physical effects and indirect effects via natural enemies.

  5. A troglomorphic spider from Java (Araneae, Ctenidae, Amauropelma)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Jeremy; Rahmadi, Cahyo

    2012-01-01

    Abstract A new troglomorphic spider from caves in Central Java, Indonesia, is described and placed in the ctenid genus Amauropelma Raven, Stumkat & Gray, until now containing only species from Queensland, Australia. Only juveniles and mature females of the new species are known. We give our reasons for placing the new species in Amauropelma, discuss conflicting characters, and make predictions about the morphology of the as yet undiscovered male that will test our taxonomic hypothesis. The description includes DNA barcode sequence data. PMID:22303127

  6. Traditions in Spider Monkeys Are Biased towards the Social Domain

    OpenAIRE

    Santorelli, Claire J.; Schaffner, Colleen M.; Campbell, Christina J.; Notman, Hugh; Pavelka, Mary S.; Weghorst, Jennifer A.; Aureli, Filippo

    2011-01-01

    Cross-site comparison studies of behavioral variation can provide evidence for traditions in wild species once ecological and genetic factors are excluded as causes for cross-site differences. These studies ensure behavior variants are considered within the context of a species' ecology and evolutionary adaptations. We examined wide-scale geographic variation in the behavior of spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi) across five long-term field sites in Central America using a well established ethn...

  7. Innate pattern recognition and categorization in a jumping spider.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yinnon Dolev

    Full Text Available The East African jumping spider Evarcha culicivora feeds indirectly on vertebrate blood by preferentially preying upon blood-fed Anopheles mosquitoes, the vectors of human malaria1, using the distinct resting posture and engorged abdomen characteristic of these specific prey as key elements for their recognition. To understand perceptual categorization of objects by these spiders, we investigated their predatory behavior toward different digital stimuli--abstract 'stick figure' representations of Anopheles constructed solely by known key identification elements, disarranged versions of these, as well as non-prey items and detailed images of alternative prey. We hypothesized that the abstract images representing Anopheles would be perceived as potential prey, and would be preferred to those of non-preferred prey. Spiders perceived the abstract stick figures of Anopheles specifically as their preferred prey, attacking them significantly more often than non-preferred prey, even when the comprising elements of the Anopheles stick figures were disarranged and disconnected from each other. However, if the relative angles between the elements of the disconnected stick figures of Anopheles were altered, the otherwise identical set of elements was no longer perceived as prey. These data show that E. culicivora is capable of making discriminations based on abstract concepts, such as the hypothetical angle formed by discontinuous elements. It is this inter-element angle rather than resting posture that is important for correct identification of Anopheles. Our results provide a glimpse of the underlying processes of object recognition in animals with minute brains, and suggest that these spiders use a local processing approach for object recognition, rather than a holistic or global approach. This study provides an excellent basis for a comparative analysis on feature extraction and detection by animals as diverse as bees and mammals.

  8. Spiders in mountain habitats of the Giant Mountains

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Růžička, Vlastimil; Vaněk, J.; Šmilauer, P.

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 43, č. 4 (2012), s. 341-347 ISSN 1067-4136 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50070508 Keywords : Giant Mountains (Krkonoše, Karkonosze) * spider s * anemo-orographic systems Subject RIV: EH - Ecology , Behaviour Impact factor: 0.236, year: 2012 http://www.springerlink.com/content/0k5g721q1155r146/fulltext.pdf

  9. Colonization of subterranean habitats by spiders in Central Europe

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Růžička, Vlastimil; Šmilauer, P.; Mlejnek, R.

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 42, č. 2 (2013), s. 133-140 ISSN 0392-6672 Grant - others:GA JU(CZ) GAJU 04-142/2010/P Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : superficial and deep subterranean habitats * caves * spider s Subject RIV: EH - Ecology , Behaviour Impact factor: 1.275, year: 2013 http://scholarcommons.usf.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1288&context=ijs

  10. Early environmental conditions shape personality types in a jumping spider

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jannis eLiedtke

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Individuals of many species across the animal kingdom are found to be less plastic than expected, even in behavioral traits. The existence of consistent behavioral differences between individuals, termed personality differences, is puzzling, since plastic behavior is considered ideal to enable animals to adaptively respond to changes in environmental conditions. In order to elucidate which mechanisms are important for the evolution of personality differences, it is crucial to understand which aspects of the environment are important for the development of personality differences. Here, we tested whether physical or social aspects of the environment during development influence individual differentiation (mean level of behavior using the jumping spider Marpissa muscosa. Furthermore, we assessed whether those behaviors were repeatable, i.e. whether personalities existed. We applied a split-brood design and raised spider siblings in three different environments: a deprived environment with no enrichment, a socially and a physically enriched environment. We focused on exploratory behavior and repeatedly assessed individual behavior in a novel environment and a novel object test. Results show that the environment during development influenced spiders’ exploratory tendencies: spiders raised in enriched environments tended to be more exploratory. Most investigated behaviors were repeatable (i.e. personalities existed across all individuals tested, whereas only few behaviors were also repeatable across individuals that had experienced the same environmental condition. Taken together, our results indicate that external stimuli can influence the development of one aspect of personality, the inter-individual variation (mean level of behavior, in a jumping spider. We also found family by environment interactions on behavioral traits potentially suggesting genetic variation in developmental plasticity.

  11. Damage, Self-Healing, and Hysteresis in Spider Silks

    OpenAIRE

    De Tommasi, D.; Puglisi, G.; Saccomandi, G.

    2010-01-01

    In this article, we propose a microstructure-based continuum model to describe the material behavior of spider silks. We suppose that the material is composed of a soft fraction with entropic elasticity and a hard, damageable fraction. The hard fraction models the presence of stiffer, crystal-rich, oriented regions and accounts for the effect of softening induced by the breaking of hydrogen bonds. To describe the observed presence of crystals with different size, composition, and orientation,...

  12. A Parasitoid Wasp Induces Overwintering Behaviour in Its Spider Host

    OpenAIRE

    Korenko, Stanislav; Pekár, Stano

    2011-01-01

    Parasites and parasitoids control behaviors of their hosts. However, the origin of the behavior evoked by the parasitic organism has been rarely identified. It is also not known whether the manipulation is universal or host-specific. Polysphinctine wasps, koinobiont ectoparasitoids of several spider species that manipulate host web-spinning activity for their own protection during pupation, provide an ideal system to reveal the origin of the evoked behavior. Larva of Zatypota percontatoria pe...

  13. Visual Discrimination Learning in the Jumping Spider Phidippus regius

    OpenAIRE

    Massimo De Agrò; Lucia Regolin; Enzo Moretto

    2017-01-01

    Over the past decade, research in comparative psychology has increasingly focused on non-vertebrate models of cognition. Jumping spiders provide excellent models for the study of visually mediated behaviors, such as associative learning or the navigation of complex environments. Here, we tested visual and memory abilities of Phidippus regius to discriminate between artificial geometrical stimuli and to generalize the learned discrimination to illusory stimuli, using the amodal completion mech...

  14. Evidence for antimicrobial activity associated with common house spider silk

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wright Simon

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Spider silk is one of the most versatile materials in nature with great strength and flexibility. Native and synthetically produced silk has been used in a wide range of applications including the construction of artificial tendons and as substrates for human cell growth. In the literature there are anecdotal reports that suggest that native spider silk may also have antimicrobial properties. Findings In this study we compared the growth of a Gram positive and a Gram negative bacterium in the presence and absence of silk produced by the common house spider Tegenaria domestica. We demonstrate that native web silk of Tegenaria domestica can inhibit the growth of the Gram positive bacterium, Bacillus subtilis. No significant inhibition of growth was detected against the Gram negative bacterium, Escherichia coli. The antimicrobial effect against B. subtilis appears to be short lived thus the active agent potentially acts in a bacteriostatic rather than bactericidal manner. Treatment of the silk with Proteinase K appears to reduce the ability to inhibit bacterial growth. This is consistent with the active agent including a protein element that is denatured or cleaved by treatment. Tegenaria silk does not appear to inhibit the growth of mammalian cells in vitro thus there is the potential for therapeutic applications.

  15. Epigeic spiders of the pastures of northern Wielkopolska

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Woźny, Marek

    2000-10-01

    Full Text Available The fauna of epigeic spiders (Araneae occurring on three different types of pastures in northern Wielkopolska was analysed. Studies were conducted from May 1992 to October 1993. The 18,995 specimens collected were classified as belonging to 137 species and 17 families. The family Linyphiidae proved the richest in species while Lycosidae was the most abundantly in terms of number of specimens. Zoocenological analysis of spider communities showed their differentiation testifying to differences in the sites studied. The dominants were: 1 Osowo Stare (Site 1: Pardosa palustris, 2 Sycyn Dolny (Site 2: Xerolycosa miniata, P. palustris, Xysticus kochi, 3 Braczewo (Site 3: Erigone dentipalpis, P. palustris. Seasonal changes of dominance of the species at each site were established. A comparison of changes of the species’ dominances in the years 1992 and 1993 disclosed similar values of the individual dominance coefficient at the sites in Osowo Stare and Braczewo. This result indicates the occurrence of the process of stabilization of these biocenoses and a tendency to equilibrium in the environment. The least stable proved to be the site at Sycyn Dolny. Analysis of the seasonal dynamics of epigeic spider communities was also made by determining the mean number of species at each site in the two years of study. The highest number of species was noted in spring. It is interesting to note the appearance of species which are rare or very rare in Poland such as: Lepthyphantes insignis, Ostearius melanopygius, Enoplognatha mordax and Enoplognatha oelandica.

  16. Seasonal variation of ground spiders in a Brazilian Savanna

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marina Farcic Mineo

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available The Brazilian Savanna Ecoregion (Cerrado is one of the richest biomes in the world, with a characteristic highly seasonal climate a dry season between May and September and a rainy season from October through April. Ground-dwelling spiders from three Cerrado phytophysiognomies, "campo cerrado", "cerrado" and "cerrad��o", were sampled using pitfall traps during two years, totaling 111 species and 3,529 individuals. The abundance of individuals and species richness was higher during the wet season. Fifty-eight species were captured exclusively during that period, whereas only nineteen were restricted to the dry season. Only two species were found in all samples. The number of juveniles was higher than the number of adults in all phytophysiognomies and in all species during both seasons. The highest abundance was registered in October and the lowest in April. Overall sex ratio was male-biased in all vegetation types sampled. Distinct climate variables affected the abundance of spiders depending on sex, age and vegetal physiognomy where they were sampled. This study involved the longest sampling of spider abundance and diversity on the ground of a Brazilian Savanna.

  17. A New Limit on CMB Circular Polarization from SPIDER

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nagy, J. M.; Ade, P. A. R.; Amiri, M.; Benton, S. J.; Bergman, A. S.; Bihary, R.; Bock, J. J.; Bond, J. R.; Bryan, S. A.; Chiang, H. C.; Contaldi, C. R.; Doré, O.; Duivenvoorden, A. J.; Eriksen, H. K.; Farhang, M.; Filippini, J. P.; Fissel, L. M.; Fraisse, A. A.; Freese, K.; Galloway, M.; Gambrel, A. E.; Gandilo, N. N.; Ganga, K.; Gudmundsson, J. E.; Halpern, M.; Hartley, J.; Hasselfield, M.; Hilton, G.; Holmes, W.; Hristov, V. V.; Huang, Z.; Irwin, K. D.; Jones, W. C.; Kuo, C. L.; Kermish, Z. D.; Li, S.; Mason, P. V.; Megerian, K.; Moncelsi, L.; Morford, T. A.; Netterfield, C. B.; Nolta, M.; Padilla, I. L.; Racine, B.; Rahlin, A. S.; Reintsema, C.; Ruhl, J. E.; Runyan, M. C.; Ruud, T. M.; Shariff, J. A.; Soler, J. D.; Song, X.; Trangsrud, A.; Tucker, C.; Tucker, R. S.; Turner, A. D.; List, J. F. Van Der; Weber, A. C.; Wehus, I. K.; Wiebe, D. V.; Young, E. Y.

    2017-08-01

    We present a new upper limit on CMB circular polarization from the 2015 flight of SPIDER, a balloon-borne telescope designed to search for $B$-mode linear polarization from cosmic inflation. Although the level of circular polarization in the CMB is predicted to be very small, experimental limits provide a valuable test of the underlying models. By exploiting the non-zero circular-to-linear polarization coupling of the HWP polarization modulators, data from SPIDER's 2015 Antarctic flight provides a constraint on Stokes $V$ at 95 and 150 GHz from $33<\\ell<307$. No other limits exist over this full range of angular scales, and SPIDER improves upon the previous limit by several orders of magnitude, providing 95% C.L. constraints on $\\ell (\\ell+1)C_{\\ell}^{VV}/(2\\pi)$ ranging from 141 $\\mu K ^2$ to 203 $\\mu K ^2$ at 150 GHz for a thermal CMB spectrum. As linear CMB polarization experiments become increasingly sensitive, the techniques described in this paper can be applied to obtain stronger constraints on circular polarization.

  18. Optimal foraging, not biogenetic law, predicts spider orb web allometry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregorič, Matjaž; Kiesbüy, Heine C; Lebrón, Shakira G Quiñones; Rozman, Alenka; Agnarsson, Ingi; Kuntner, Matjaž

    2013-03-01

    The biogenetic law posits that the ontogeny of an organism recapitulates the pattern of evolutionary changes. Morphological evidence has offered some support for, but also considerable evidence against, the hypothesis. However, biogenetic law in behavior remains underexplored. As physical manifestation of behavior, spider webs offer an interesting model for the study of ontogenetic behavioral changes. In orb-weaving spiders, web symmetry often gets distorted through ontogeny, and these changes have been interpreted to reflect the biogenetic law. Here, we test the biogenetic law hypothesis against the alternative, the optimal foraging hypothesis, by studying the allometry in Leucauge venusta orb webs. These webs range in inclination from vertical through tilted to horizontal; biogenetic law predicts that allometry relates to ontogenetic stage, whereas optimal foraging predicts that allometry relates to gravity. Specifically, pronounced asymmetry should only be seen in vertical webs under optimal foraging theory. We show that, through ontogeny, vertical webs in L. venusta become more asymmetrical in contrast to tilted and horizontal webs. Biogenetic law thus cannot explain L. venusta web allometry, but our results instead support optimization of foraging area in response to spider size.

  19. Differential predictive power of self report and implicit measures on behavioural and physiological fear responses to spiders

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Bockstaele, B.; Verschuere, B.; Koster, E.H.W.; Tibboel, H.; de Houwer, J.; Crombez, G.

    2011-01-01

    In this study, we investigated to what extent indirect measures predict behavioural and physiological fear responses towards spiders. Implicit attitudes towards spiders were assessed using an implicit association test and attentional bias towards spiders was assessed using a dot probe task and a

  20. Spider-mediated flux of PCBs from contaminated sediments to terrestrial ecosystems and potential risks to arachnivorous birds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walters, D.M.; Mills, M.A.; Fritz, K.M.; Raikow, D.F.

    2010-01-01

    We investigated aquatic insect utilization and PCB exposure in riparian spiders at the Lake Hartwell Superfund site (Clemson, SC). We sampled sediments, adult chironomids, terrestrial insects, riparian spiders (Tetragnathidae, Araneidae, and Mecynogea lemniscata), and upland spiders (Araneidae) along a sediment contamination gradient. Stable isotopes (?13C, ? 15N) indicated that riparian spiders primarily consumed aquatic insects whereas upland spiders consumed terrestrial insects. PCBs in chironomids (mean 1240 ng/g among sites) were 2 orders of magnitude higher than terrestrial insects (15.2 ng/g), similar to differences between riparian (820?2012 ng/g) and upland spiders (30 ng/g). Riparian spider PCBs were positively correlated with sediment concentrations for all taxa (r2 = 0.44?0.87). We calculated spider-based wildlife values (WVs, the minimum spider PCB concentrations causing physiologically significant doses in consumers) to assess exposure risks for arachnivorous birds. Spider concentrations exceeded WVs for most birds at heavily contaminated sites and were ?14-fold higher for the most sensitive species (chickadee nestlings, Poecile spp.). Spiders are abundant and ubiquitous in riparian habitats, where they depend on aquatic insect prey. These traits, along with the high degree of spatial correlation between spider and sediment concentrations we observed, suggest that they are model indicator species for monitoring contaminated sediment sites and assessing risks associated with contaminant flux into terrestrial ecosystems. ?? This article not subject to U.S. Copyright. Published 2009 by the American Chemical Society.

  1. An insect-feeding guild of carnivorous plants and spiders: does optimal foraging lead to competition or facilitation?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crowley, Philip H; Hopper, Kevin R; Krupa, James J

    2013-12-01

    Carnivorous plants and spiders, along with their prey, are main players in an insect-feeding guild found on acidic, poorly drained soils in disturbed habitat. Darwin's notion that these plants must actively attract the insects they capture raises the possibility that spiders could benefit from proximity to prey hotspots created by the plants. Alternatively, carnivorous plants and spiders may deplete prey locally or (through insect redistribution) more widely, reducing each other's gain rates from predation. Here, we formulate and analyze a model of this guild, parameterized for carnivorous sundews and lycosid spiders, under assumptions of random movement by insects and optimal foraging by predators. Optimal foraging here involves gain maximization via trap investment (optimal web sizes and sundew trichome densities) and an ideal free distribution of spiders between areas with and without sundews. We find no facilitation: spiders and sundews engage in intense exploitation competition. Insect attraction by plants modestly increases sundew gain rates but slightly decreases spider gain rates. In the absence of population size structure, optimal spider redistribution between areas with and without sundews yields web sizes that are identical for all spiders, regardless of proximity to sundews. Web-building spiders have higher gain rates than wandering spiders in this system at high insect densities, but wandering spiders have the advantage at low insect densities. Results are complex, indicating that predictions to be tested empirically must be based on careful quantitative assessment.

  2. Physical model of a floating trash boom to control aquatic weeds at the TVA Widows Creek Fossil Plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hopping, P.N.

    1991-01-01

    This paper reports that the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) Widows Creek Fossil plant seasonally encounters adverse accumulations of aquatic weeds at the intakes of the condenser cooling water pumps. To reduce the accumulations, a floating trash boom has been proposed for the intakes. To evaluate the hydraulic feasibility of a boom, a physical model of the intakes has been built at the TVA Engineering Laboratory. The model was used to determine the boom alignment and depth of skimming needed to successfully deflect weeds away from the intakes and provide self-cleaning

  3. The effect of coresidence with an adult child on depressive symptoms among older widowed women in South Korea: an instrumental variables estimation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Do, Young Kyung; Malhotra, Chetna

    2012-05-01

    To estimate the causal effect of coresidence with an adult child on depressive symptoms among older widowed women in South Korea. Data from the first (2006) and second (2008) waves of the Korea Longitudinal Study of Ageing were used. The analysis was restricted to widowed women aged ≥65 years with at least one living child (N = 2,446). We used an instrumental variables (IVs) estimation exploiting two child characteristics as IVs (the number of sons and whether the eldest child is a daughter). Specification tests for IVs showed that these instruments predict the probability of an older widowed woman's coresidence with an adult child but do not directly affect depressive symptoms. Our IV two-stage least-squares estimator suggested that coresidence with an adult child has a protective effect on depressive symptoms among older widowed women in South Korea. Coresidence was found to be endogenous in our statistical model of depressive symptoms. The IV estimation method can be a useful approach to addressing the potential endogeneity between intergenerational coresidence and elderly health. Rapidly decreasing rates of intergenerational coresidence may raise public health concerns among older widowed women in South Korea.

  4. Untangling spider silk evolution with spidroin terminal domains

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Garb Jessica E

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Spidroins are a unique family of large, structural proteins that make up the bulk of spider silk fibers. Due to the highly variable nature of their repetitive sequences, spidroin evolutionary relationships have principally been determined from their non-repetitive carboxy (C-terminal domains, though they offer limited character data. The few known spidroin amino (N-terminal domains have been difficult to obtain, but potentially contain critical phylogenetic information for reconstructing the diversification of spider silks. Here we used silk gland expression data (ESTs from highly divergent species to evaluate the functional significance and phylogenetic utility of spidroin N-terminal domains. Results We report 11 additional spidroin N-termini found by sequencing ~1,900 silk gland cDNAs from nine spider species that shared a common ancestor > 240 million years ago. In contrast to their hyper-variable repetitive regions, spidroin N-terminal domains have retained striking similarities in sequence identity, predicted secondary structure, and hydrophobicity. Through separate and combined phylogenetic analyses of N-terminal domains and their corresponding C-termini, we find that combined analysis produces the most resolved trees and that N-termini contribute more support and less conflict than the C-termini. These analyses show that paralogs largely group by silk gland type, except for the major ampullate spidroins. Moreover, spidroin structural motifs associated with superior tensile strength arose early in the history of this gene family, whereas a motif conferring greater extensibility convergently evolved in two distantly related paralogs. Conclusions A non-repetitive N-terminal domain appears to be a universal attribute of spidroin proteins, likely retained from the origin of spider silk production. Since this time, spidroin N-termini have maintained several features, consistent with this domain playing a key role in silk

  5. The spider Harpactea sadistica: co-evolution of traumatic insemination and complex female genital morphology in spiders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Řezáč, Milan

    2009-01-01

    The males of invertebrates from a few phyla, including arthropods, have been reported to practise traumatic insemination (TI; i.e. injecting sperm by using the copulatory organ to penetrate the female's body wall). As all previously reported arthropod examples have been insects, there is considerable interest in whether TI might have evolved independently in other arthropods. The research reported here demonstrates the first case of TI in the arthropod subphylum Chelicerata, in particular how the genital morphology and mating behaviour of Harpactea sadistica (Řezáč 2008), a spider from Israel, has become adapted specifically for reproduction based on TI. Males have needle-like intromittent organs and females have atrophied spermathecae. In other spiders, eggs are fertilized simultaneously with oviposition, but the eggs of H. sadistica are fertilized in the ovaries (internal fertilization) and develop as embryos before being laid. Sperm-storage organs of phylogenetically basal groups to H. sadistica provide males with last male sperm priority and allow removal of sperm by males that mate later, suggesting that TI might have evolved as an adaptive strategy to circumvent an unfavourable structure of the sperm-storage organs, allowing the first male to mate with paternity advantage. Understanding the functional significance of TI gives us insight into factors underlying the evolution of the genital and sperm-storage morphology in spiders. PMID:19403531

  6. High-toughness silk produced by a transgenic silkworm expressing spider (Araneus ventricosus dragline silk protein.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yoshihiko Kuwana

    Full Text Available Spider dragline silk is a natural fiber that has excellent tensile properties; however, it is difficult to produce artificially as a long, strong fiber. Here, the spider (Araneus ventricosus dragline protein gene was cloned and a transgenic silkworm was generated, that expressed the fusion protein of the fibroin heavy chain and spider dragline protein in cocoon silk. The spider silk protein content ranged from 0.37 to 0.61% w/w (1.4-2.4 mol% native silkworm fibroin. Using a good silk-producing strain, C515, as the transgenic silkworm can make the raw silk from its cocoons for the first time. The tensile characteristics (toughness of the raw silk improved by 53% after the introduction of spider dragline silk protein; the improvement depended on the quantity of the expressed spider dragline protein. To demonstrate the commercial feasibility for machine reeling, weaving, and sewing, we used the transgenic spider silk to weave a vest and scarf; this was the first application of spider silk fibers from transgenic silkworms.

  7. Biased interpretation and memory in children with varying levels of spider fear

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Klein, A.M.; Titulaer, G.; Simons, C.; Allart, E.; de Gier, E.; Bögels, S.M.; Becker, E.S.; Rinck, M.

    2014-01-01

    This study investigated multiple cognitive biases in children simultaneously, to investigate whether spider-fearful children display an interpretation bias, a recall bias, and source monitoring errors, and whether these biases are specific for spider-related materials. Furthermore, the independent

  8. In Vitro Evaluation of Spider Silk Meshes as a Potential Biomaterial for Bladder Reconstruction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Steins, A.; Dik, P.; Müller, W.H.; Vervoort, S.J.; Reimers, K.; Kubhier, J.W.; Vogt, P.M.; van Apeldoorn, Aart A.; Coffer, P.J.; Schepers, K.

    2015-01-01

    Reconstruction of the bladder by means of both natural and synthetic materials remains a challenge due to severe adverse effects such as mechanical failure. Here we investigate the application of spider major ampullate gland-derived dragline silk from the Nephila edulis spider, a natural biomaterial

  9. Photoluminescent properties of spider silk coated with Eu-doped nanoceria

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dmitrović, Svetlana, E-mail: svetlana8@vin.bg.ac.rs [University of Belgrade, Vinča Institute of Nuclear Sciences (Serbia); Nikolić, Marko G.; Jelenković, Branislav [University of Belgrade, Institute of Physics (Serbia); Prekajski, Marija [University of Belgrade, Vinča Institute of Nuclear Sciences (Serbia); Rabasović, Mihailo [University of Belgrade, Institute of Physics (Serbia); Zarubica, Aleksandra [University of Niš, Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Science and Mathematics (Serbia); Branković, Goran [University of Belgrade, Institute for Multidisciplinary Research, Department of Material Science (Serbia); Matović, Branko [University of Belgrade, Vinča Institute of Nuclear Sciences (Serbia)

    2017-02-15

    Spider dragline silk was coated with pure as well as Eu-doped ceria nanopowders at the room temperature. The treatment was done by immersion of the spider silk mesh into aqueous solutions of cerium nitrate (Ce(NO{sub 3}){sub 3}) and ammonium hydroxide (NH{sub 4}OH). Depending on the relationship between Ce{sup 3+} ion and ammonium hydroxide concentration, coated fibers exhibited a different thickness. Obtained materials were studied by means of FESEM. It was found that ceria nanoparticles of average size of 3 nm were coated along spider thread. X-ray diffraction (XRD) and selected-area electron diffraction (SAED) confirmed crystal nature of nanoparticle coating of spider silk. By using Williamson-Hall plots, crystallite size and strain were estimated. EDS measurement confirmed the presence of Eu in spider-Eu-doped ceria composite, and according to FTIR analysis, the interaction between CeO2 and spider silk was proposed. The morphology of obtained composite was observed by TEM. The photoluminescence emission spectra of spider silk coated with Eu-doped ceria were measured with two different excitations of 385 and 466 nm. The two-photon excited auto-fluorescence of spider silk coated with Eu-doped ceria was detected using a nonlinear laser scanning microscope. Obtained composite has a potential as a fluorescent labeling material in diverse applications.

  10. Heritability of defence and life-history traits in the two-spotted spider mite

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tien, N.S.H.; Sabelis, M.W.; Egas, M.

    2009-01-01

    Background: Two-spotted spider mites hide against predatory mites in a web of self-produced sticky silk. The proteins invested in this shelter may reduce investment in reproduction. Questions: Do spider mite populations harbor genetic variation for web production, thereby enabling a response to

  11. High School Students' Attitudes Towards Spiders: A cross-cultural comparison

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prokop, Pavol; Tolarovičová, Andrea; Camerik, Anne M.; Peterková, Viera

    2010-08-01

    Spiders are traditionally considered to be among the least popular of animals. Current evidence suggests that a negative attitude towards spiders could be influenced by both cultural and evolutionary pressures. Some researchers suggest that science education activities could positively influence students' perceptions of spiders. Their evidence is, however, ambivalent. Using a five-point score Likert-type questionnaire in which the items were developed in a similar way to four of Kellert's categories of attitude (scientistic, negativistic, naturalistic, and ecologistic) towards invertebrates, we compared the level of knowledge of and attitudes towards spiders of high school students from two countries, Slovakia (n = 354) and South Africa (n = 382). The students represented different cultures and followed dissimilar science education curricula. Only among the Slovakian students there was a statistically significant but low correlation between knowledge and attitude (r = 0.30). The South African students scored higher in the categories of scientistic, naturalistic, and ecologistic attitudes. Comparison of attitude towards spiders of indigenous Africans from coeducational Catholic schools revealed that South African students have greater fear of spiders than Slovakian students, supporting the biological preparedness hypothesis. This hypothesis predicts a greater fear of spiders in South Africa than in Europe since several South African spiders possess venoms that are dangerous to humans. The results of this study are discussed from science education, cultural, and evolutionary perspectives.

  12. Methods of assembling and disassembling spider and burnable poison rod structures for nuclear reactors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Walton, L.A.

    1981-01-01

    A method is described of joining burnable poison rods to the spider arms of a pressurised water power reactor fuel assembly which is proof against the reactor core environment but permits these rods to be removed from the spider simply, swiftly and delicately. (U.K.)

  13. Parasitization of a huntsman spider (Arachnida: Araneae: Sparassidae: Heteropoda venatoria by a mermithid nematode (Nematoda: Mermithidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sachin P. Ranade

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available The emergence of a mermithid worm from a huntsman spider Heteropoda venatoria was witnessed at Buxa Tiger Reserve, West Bengal.  It appears to be a first record of the spider family Sparassidae serving as a host for a member of the family Mermithidae. 

  14. Contamination vs. harm-relevant outcome expectancies and covariation bias in spider phobia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Jong, Peter J.; Peters, Madelon L.

    There is increasing evidence that spiders are not feared because of harmful outcome expectancies but because of disgust and contamination-relevant outcome expectancies. This study investigated the relative strength of contamination- and harm-relevant UCS expectancies and covariation bias in spider

  15. Differences among plant species in acceptance by the spider mite Tetranychus urticae Koch

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boom, van den C.E.M.; Beek, van T.A.; Dicke, M.

    2003-01-01

    The spider mite Tetranychus urticae Koch has a broad range of host plants. However, the spider mite does not accept all plants to the same degree because of differences in nutritive and toxic constituents. Other factors, such as the induction of secondary metabolites, the morphology of a leaf

  16. fMRI neurofeedback facilitates anxiety regulation in females with spider phobia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zilverstand, Anna; Sorger, Bettina; Sarkheil, Pegah; Goebel, R.

    2015-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Spider phobics show an exaggerated fear response when encountering spiders. This fear response is aggravated by negative and irrational beliefs about the feared object. Cognitive reappraisal can target these beliefs, and therefore has a fear regulating effect. The presented study

  17. The spider anxiety and disgust screening for children: Reliability and validity of a screening for children

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Klein, A.M.; Niekerk, R.E. van; Baartmans, J.M.D.; Rinck, M.; Becker, E.S.

    2017-01-01

    Objectives: Specific fears, such as fear of spiders, are often used as a model for studying the development of other fears because several studies suggest that the underlying processes of fear are similar. For the screening of spider fear in children, a good, fast, and reliable screening instrument

  18. Utility Assessment Report for SPIDERS Phase 2: Ft. Carson (Rev 1.0)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Barr, Jonathan L. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Tuffner, Francis K. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Hadley, Mark D. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Schneider, Kevin P. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)

    2014-01-01

    This document contains the Utility Assessment Report (UAR) for the Phase 2 operational Demonstration (OD) of the Smart Power Infrastructure Demonstration for Energy Reliability and Security (SPIDERS) Joint Capability Technology Demonstration (JCTD). The UAR for Phase 2 shows that the SPIDERS system was able to meet the requirements of the Implementation Directive at Ft. Carson.

  19. Neural correlation of successful cognitive behaviour therapy for spider phobia: a magnetoencephalography study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wright, Barry; Alderson-Day, Ben; Prendergast, Garreth; Kennedy, Juliette; Bennett, Sophie; Docherty, Mary; Whitton, Clare; Manea, Laura; Gouws, Andre; Tomlinson, Heather; Green, Gary

    2013-12-30

    Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) can be an effective treatment for spider phobia, but the underlying neural correlates of therapeutic change are yet to be specified. The present study used magnetoencephalography (MEG) to study responses within the first half second, to phobogenic stimuli in a group of individuals with spider phobia prior to treatment (n=12) and then in nine of them following successful CBT (where they could touch and manage live large common house spiders) at least 9 months later. We also compared responses to a group of age-matched healthy control participants (n=11). Participants viewed static photographs of real spiders, other fear-inducing images (e.g. snakes, sharks) and neutral stimuli (e.g. kittens). Beamforming methods were used to localise sources of significant power changes in response to stimuli. Prior to treatment, participants with spider phobia showed a significant maximum response in the right frontal pole when viewing images of real spiders specifically. No significant frontal response was observed for either control participants or participants with spider phobia post-treatment. In addition, participants' subjective ratings of spider stimuli significantly predicted peak responses in right frontal regions. The implications for understanding brain-based effects of cognitive therapies are discussed. © 2013 Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.

  20. Species richness and composition assessment of spiders in a Mediterranean scrubland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bondoso Cardoso, Pedro Miguel; Henriques, Sérgio S.; Gaspar, Clara

    2009-01-01

    Intensive fieldwork has been undertaken in Portugal in order to develop a standardized and optimized sampling protocol for Mediterranean spiders. The present study had the objectives of testing the use of semi-quantitative sampling for obtaining an exhaustive species richness assessment of spider...

  1. Web orientation and prey resources for web-building spiders in eastern hemlock.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mallis, Rachael E; Rieske, Lynne K

    2010-10-01

    We examined the arthropod community on eastern hemlock, Tsuga canadensis (L.) Carr, in the context of its role in providing potential prey items for hemlock-associated web-weaving spiders. Using sticky traps simulating spider webs, we evaluated what prey items are available to web-weaving spiders in eastern hemlock based on web orientation (horizontal versus vertical) and cardinal direction. We found that the overwhelming majority (>70%) of prey items available to spiders in hemlock canopies were Diptera. Psocoptera, Hymenoptera, and Hemiptera comprised most of the remaining potential prey. A significant direction × orientation interaction, and greater trap capture in some direction-orientation combinations, suggests that spiders might locate their webs in eastern hemlock canopies for thermoregulatory purposes, ultimately optimizing prey capture. We also evaluated these findings in the context of hemlock infestation by the invasive hemlock woolly adelgid, Adelges tsugae Annand. The adelgid is a sedentary insect with a mobile crawler stage that provides a readily available, easily obtained food source for predators in hemlock canopies. However, an abundance of alternative prey will affect within canopy spider distribution and the potential intensity with which spiders consume these prey. Understanding the response of spiders to potential prey availability is essential to understanding the trophic interactions involving these predators and their potential for influencing herbivore populations.

  2. Red-back spider (Latrodectus mactans hasselti) envenomation in a neonate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Byrne, G C; Pemberton, P J

    A case of red-back spider (Latrodectus mactans hasselti) envenomation in a neonate is presented. The signs of envenomation in a neonate are discussed, together with the dose of antivenom necessary for the successful treatment of envenomation. In episodes of untractable crying in neonates, the possibility that the baby has been bitten by a red-back spider should be considered.

  3. Salivary proteins of spider mites suppress defenses in Nicotiana benthamiana and promote mite reproduction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Villarroel, C.A.; Jonckheere, W.; Alba Cano, J.M.; Glas, J.J.; Dermauw, W.; Haring, M.A.; Van Leeuwen, T.; Schuurink, R.C.; Kant, M.R.

    2016-01-01

    Spider mites (Tetranychidae sp.) are widely occurring arthropod pests on cultivated plants. Feeding by the two-spotted spider mite T. urticae, a generalist herbivore, induces a defense response in plants that mainly depends on the phytohormones jasmonic acid and salicylic acid (SA). On tomato

  4. The time course of location-avoidance learning in fear of spiders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rinck, Mike; Koene, Marieke; Telli, Sibel; Moerman-van den Brink, Wiltine; Verhoeven, Barbara; Becker, Eni S

    2016-01-01

    Two experiments were designed to study the time course of avoidance learning in spider fearfuls (SFs) under controlled experimental conditions. To achieve this, we employed an immersive virtual environment (IVE): While walking freely through a virtual art museum to search for specific paintings, the participants were exposed to virtual spiders. Unbeknown to the participants, only two of four museum rooms contained spiders, allowing for avoidance learning. Indeed, the more SF the participants were, the faster they learned to avoid the rooms that contained spiders (Experiment. 1), and within the first six trials, high fearfuls already developed a preference for starting their search task in rooms without spiders (Experiment 2). These results illustrate the time course of avoidance learning in SFs, and they speak to the usefulness of IVEs in fundamental anxiety research.

  5. Proximate mechanism of behavioral manipulation of an orb-weaver spider host by a parasitoid wasp.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thiago Gechel Kloss

    Full Text Available Some ichneumonid wasps induce modifications in the web building behavior of their spider hosts to produce resistant "cocoon" webs. These structures hold and protect the wasp's cocoon during pupa development. The mechanism responsible for host manipulation probably involves the inoculation of psychotropic chemicals by the parasitoid larva during a specific developmental period. Recent studies indicate that some spiders build cocoon webs similar to those normally built immediately before ecdysis, suggesting that this substance might be a molting hormone or a precursor chemical of this hormone. Here, we report that Cyclosa spider species exhibiting modified behavior presented higher 20-OH-ecdysone levels than parasitized spiders acting normally or unparasitized individuals. We suggest that the lack of control that spiders have when constructing modified webs can be triggered by anachronic activation of ecdysis.

  6. Community structure of spiders in coastal habitats of a Mediterranean delta region (Nestos Delta, NE Greece

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Buchholz

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available (pp 101-115Habitat zonation and ecology of spider assemblages have been poorly studied in Mediterranean ecosystems. A first analysis of spider assemblages in coastal habitats in the east Mediterranean area is presented. The study area is the 250 km² Nestos Delta, located in East Macedonia in the North-East of Greece. Spiders were caught in pitfall traps at 17 sites from the beginning of April to the end of June 2004. Nonparametric estimators were used to determine species richness and alpha diversity. Ordination analysis (redundancy analysis indicated four clearly separable spider species groups (salt meadows, dunes, mea-dows and floodplain forests, along a soil salinity and moisture gradient. Based on these results we discuss the habitat preferences of these spiders and include the first ecological data on several species.

  7. Association of spiders and lichen on Robben Island, South Africa: a case report

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Mukherjee

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available The present study is a firstrecord of spider occurrence on Robben Island, South Africa. Some habitats were rich in lichens. As we know, lichens enhance wildlife habitat in less direct ways. The objective of the study was to examine the potential importance of lichens in enriching spider diversity and abundance. A total of 260 spiders (170 from lichens and 90 from bush were collected following the visual search method over one year. Seasonal trends in overall species richness and abundance indicated that the relative density of spiders was greater in lichens than in bushes. The result suggests that habitat structure, such as branch size and epiphytic lichen abundance, can be an explanation for the greater number of spiders in lichen-rich patches of the island.

  8. Adaptation of the spiders to the environment: the case of some Chilean species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mauricio eCanals

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Spiders are small arthropods that have colonized terrestrial environments. These impose three main problems: i terrestrial habitats have large fluctuations in temperature and humidity; ii the internal concentration of water is higher than the external environment in spiders, which exposes them continually to water loss; and iii their small body size determines a large surface / volume ratio, affecting energy exchange and influencing the life strategy. In this review we focus on body design, energetic, thermal selection, and water balance characteristics of some spider species present in Chile and correlate our results with ecological and behavioral information. Preferred temperatures and critical temperatures of Chilean spiders vary among species and individuals and may be adjusted by phenotypic plasticity. For example in the mygalomorph high-altitude spider Paraphysa parvula the preferred temperature is similar to that of the lowland spider Grammostola rosea; but while P. parvula shows phenotypic plasticity, G. rosea does not. The araneomorph spiders Loxosceles laeta and Scytodes globula have greater daily variations in preferred temperatures at twilight and during the night, which are set to the nocturnal activity rhythms of these species. They also present acclimation of the minimum critical temperatures. Dysdera crocata has a low preferred temperature adjusted to its favorite prey, the woodlouse. Spider metabolic rate is low compared to other arthropods, which may be associated with its sit and wait predatory strategy particularly in primitive hunter and weavers. In mygalomorph spiders the respiratory system is highly optimized with high oxygen conductance, for example G. rosea needs only a difference of 0.12 to 0.16 kPa in the oxygen partial pressure across the air-hemolymph barrier to satisfy its resting oxygen consumption demands. Water loss is a significant stress for spiders. Paraphysa parvula shows an evaporative water loss ten times

  9. Black Willow

    Science.gov (United States)

    R. M. Krinard

    1980-01-01

    Black willow and other species of Salix together comprise a majority of the stocking. Cottonwood is the chief associate, particularly in the early stages, but green ash, sycamore, pecan, persimmon, waterlocust, American elm, baldcypress, red maple, sugarberry, box-elder, and in some areas, silver maple are invaders preceding the next successional stage.

  10. Counseling Blacks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vontress, Clemmont E.

    1970-01-01

    Blacks have developed unique environmental perceptions, values, and attitudes, making it difficult for counselors to establish and maintain positive rapport. This article examines attitudinal ingredients posited by Carl Rogers for relevance to this problem, and suggests in-service training to help counselors and other professionals relate…

  11. Black Psyllium

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... by mouth for up to 6 weeks reduces blood sugar in people with type 2 diabetes. Cancer. Diarrhea. Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Other conditions. ... with the dose. Diabetes: Black psyllium can lower blood sugar levels ... with type 2 diabetes by slowing down absorption of carbohydrates. Monitor blood ...

  12. Periumbilical Pain with Radiation to Both Legs Following Tarantula Bite; a Case Report

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mahboob Pouraghaei

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Tarantulas have recently become as pets in most parts of the world that increased the probability of encountering emergency physicians with patients hurt with these spiders. Their attacks usually do not cause general manifestation, however there are some case reports in this regard. Here, a 40-year-old man was reported who was referred to the emergency department with severe periumbilical pain that radiated to both legs and diagnosed as a victim of tarantula bite. Such symptoms usually are belonging to other spiders like Black Widow spider, but it seems that tarantula can mimic them in some cases, too.

  13. Black hole astrophysics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Blandford, R.D.; Thorne, K.S.

    1979-01-01

    Following an introductory section, the subject is discussed under the headings: on the character of research in black hole astrophysics; isolated holes produced by collapse of normal stars; black holes in binary systems; black holes in globular clusters; black holes in quasars and active galactic nuclei; primordial black holes; concluding remarks on the present state of research in black hole astrophysics. (U.K.)

  14. Quantum black holes

    CERN Document Server

    Calmet, Xavier; Winstanley, Elizabeth

    2014-01-01

    Written by foremost experts, this short book gives a clear description of the physics of quantum black holes. The reader will learn about quantum black holes in four and higher dimensions, primordial black holes, the production of black holes in high energy particle collisions, Hawking radiation, black holes in models of low scale quantum gravity and quantum gravitational aspects of black holes.

  15. SPIDERS (ARANEI IN HEPRETOBIONT MESOFAUNA OF THE NORTHWEST CAUCASUS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. V. Ponomarev

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract. Aim. We discussed in previous work a herpetobiont fauna of arachnids (Arachnida from the isolated yewboxwood wood, located in the Caucasian State Biosphere Reserve, 20 km near Sochi (Ponomarev, Chumachenko, 2007. The aim of the paper is to summarize available data about herpetobiont araneofauna of the Northwest Caucasus. Location. Republic of Adygea, Russia.Methods. Material was collected in 2009 on north macroslope of Main Caucasian Ridge within the territory of the Caucasian State Biosphere Reserve between 1000–1820 m. The following plant communities are studied: beech-silver fir (assotiation Abieti-Fagetion orientalis Korotkov et Belonovskaya 1987, maple forest (assotiation Petasito albae-Abietetum nordmannianae subassotiation Aceretosum trautvetteri Francuzov 2006, subalpine meadow (assotiation Poa longifolii – Calamagrostietum arundinaceae Semagina, 1992. Soil traps were used for collection of spiders.Results and main conclusions. During the period of study 100 species of spiders from 19 families are registered. Most diverse araneofauna of subalpine meadows includs 54 species belonging to 14 families. The least diverse araneofauna is in maple forest (24 species of 7 families. In beech-silver fir includes 45 species of 16 families of spiders. Only 3 species (Pireneitega ovtchinnikovi, Cybaeus abchasicus, Tenuiphantes mengei were found in all surveyed habitats. These 3 species clearly tend to forest habitats. Herpetobiont araneofauna of the Northwest Caucasus characterized by high taxonomic diversity with clear predominance of representatives of the family Linyphiidae. Specificity of araneofauna in different types of plant communities is high.

  16. Variation in protein intake induces variation in spider silk expression.

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    Sean J Blamires

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: It is energetically expensive to synthesize certain amino acids. The proteins (spidroins of spider major ampullate (MA silk, MaSp1 and MaSp2, differ in amino acid composition. Glutamine and proline are prevalent in MaSp2 and are expensive to synthesize. Since most orb web spiders express high proline silk they might preferentially attain the amino acids needed for silk from food and shift toward expressing more MaSp1 in their MA silk when starved. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We fed three spiders; Argiope aetherea, Cyrtophora moluccensis and Leucauge blanda, high protein, low protein or no protein solutions. A. aetherea and L. blanda MA silks are high in proline, while C. moluccesnsis MA silks are low in proline. After 10 days of feeding we determined the amino acid compositions and mechanical properties of each species' MA silk and compared them between species and treatments with pre-treatment samples, accounting for ancestry. We found that the proline and glutamine of A. aetherea and L. blanda silks were affected by protein intake; significantly decreasing under the low and no protein intake treatments. Glutmaine composition in C. moluccensis silk was likewise affected by protein intake. However, the composition of proline in their MA silk was not significantly affected by protein intake. CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that protein limitation induces a shift toward different silk proteins with lower glutamine and/or proline content. Contradictions to the MaSp model lie in the findings that C. moluccensis MA silks did not experience a significant reduction in proline and A. aetherea did not experience a significant reduction in serine on low/no protein. The mechanical properties of the silks could not be explained by a MaSp1 expressional shift. Factors other than MaSp expression, such as the expression of spidroin-like orthologues, may impact on silk amino acid composition and spinning and glandular processes may impact

  17. Spider monkey, Muriqui and Woolly monkey relationships revisited.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Lima, Margarida Maria Celeira; Sampaio, Iracilda; Vieira, Ricardo dos Santos; Schneider, Horacio

    2007-01-01

    The taxonomic relationships among the four genera of the Atelidae family, Alouatta (Howler), Ateles (Spider), Lagothrix (Woolly) and Brachyteles (Muriqui), have been the subject of great debate. In general, almost all authors agree with the assignment of Howler monkeys as the basal genus, either in its own tribe Alouattini or in the subfamily Alouattinae, but they disagree on the associations among the other members of the family. Muriquis have been grouped with Spider monkeys based on the fact that they share various behavioral and morphological characteristics. Cladistic analyses using morphological, biochemical, karyotype and behavioral characteristics depicted a phylogenetic tree that places Howler as the basal genus and the remaining genera in an unresolved politomy. More recent studies using molecular data have suggested that Muriqui and Woolly monkeys are sister groups. However, a recent study based on nuclear and mtDNA argued that politomy is what best represents the relationships among Spider, Woolly and Muriqui. To contribute to this debate we have added new data from two nuclear genes, Transferrin and von Willebrand Factor, and using an alignment of 17,997 bp we demonstrate that a total analysis strongly supports the Muriqui-Woolly clade. A gene-to-gene approach showed that four of the eight nuclear genes provide support for the Muriqui-Woolly clade, two strongly and two moderately, while none of the eight genes provide support for any alternative arrangement. The mitochondrial genes were not able to resolve the politomy. A possible reason for the difficulty in resolving atelid relationships may be the short period of time separating each cladogenetic event in the evolutionary process that shaped this family.

  18. Male mating tactics in spider monkeys: sneaking to compete.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibson, K Nicole

    2010-09-01

    I investigated the mating system and male mating tactics for a population of wild spider monkeys (Ateles belzebuth chamek), to identify the behaviors males used to achieve and maintain access to sexually receptive females, and to examine if some males used more tactics than other males and/or had differential access to females. Results show that the mating system mostly involved scramble competition polygyny and that males used a range of mating tactics and behaviors, previously unreported for spider monkeys. The most unusual feature of spider monkey mating behavior was the secretive nature of copulations-nearly all copulations were clandestine, but a few were in the presence of other group members. Fifteen sexually mature males were observed to copulate 43 times. These data provide the first opportunity to evaluate how female availability influences male-male competition. First, the operational sex ratio was highly skewed toward males because usually only one female was receptive in each community per month. Second, females only mated with a few males in their community in any one mating period, but some females mated over the course of multiple consecutive mating periods, eventually mating with most or all of the males in their community. Across all communities, 9 (21%) of the 43 copulations involved a single male-female partner, 20 (47%) involved four males mating with the same female, and males mated with from one to four different females. Fourteen of the 16 total adult males and 1 subadult male (10 total) copulated. One or two males in each community were successful in monopolizing access to receptive females, and these males did not usually have the highest rates of copulation. In this system, clandestine copulations are one behavioral solution to the complex problem of gaining mating exclusivity and, probably, exercising mate choice. (c) 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  19. Peptidomic and transcriptomic profiling of four distinct spider venoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oldrati, Vera; Koua, Dominique; Allard, Pierre-Marie; Hulo, Nicolas; Arrell, Miriam; Nentwig, Wolfgang; Lisacek, Frédérique; Wolfender, Jean-Luc; Kuhn-Nentwig, Lucia; Stöcklin, Reto

    2017-01-01

    Venom based research is exploited to find novel candidates for the development of innovative pharmacological tools, drug candidates and new ingredients for cosmetic and agrochemical industries. Moreover, venomics, as a well-established approach in systems biology, helps to elucidate the genetic mechanisms of the production of such a great molecular biodiversity. Today the advances made in the proteomics, transcriptomics and bioinformatics fields, favor venomics, allowing the in depth study of complex matrices and the elucidation even of minor compounds present in minute biological samples. The present study illustrates a rapid and efficient method developed for the elucidation of venom composition based on NextGen mRNA sequencing of venom glands and LC-MS/MS venom proteome profiling. The analysis of the comprehensive data obtained was focused on cysteine rich peptide toxins from four spider species originating from phylogenetically distant families for comparison purposes. The studied species were Heteropoda davidbowie (Sparassidae), Poecilotheria formosa (Theraphosidae), Viridasius fasciatus (Viridasiidae) and Latrodectus mactans (Theridiidae). This led to a high resolution profiling of 284 characterized cysteine rich peptides, 111 of which belong to the Inhibitor Cysteine Knot (ICK) structural motif. The analysis of H. davidbowie venom revealed a high richness in term of venom diversity: 95 peptide sequences were identified; out of these, 32 peptides presented the ICK structural motif and could be classified in six distinct families. The profiling of P. formosa venom highlighted the presence of 126 peptide sequences, with 52 ICK toxins belonging to three structural distinct families. V. fasciatus venom was shown to contain 49 peptide sequences, out of which 22 presented the ICK structural motif and were attributed to five families. The venom of L. mactans, until now studied for its large neurotoxins (Latrotoxins), revealed the presence of 14 cysteine rich

  20. SPIDERS Bi-Directional Charging Station Interconnection Testing

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Simpson, M.

    2013-09-01

    The Smart Power Infrastructure Demonstration for Energy Reliability and Security (SPIDERS) program is a multi-year Department of Defense-Department of Energy (DOE) collaborative effort that will demonstrate integration of renewables into island-able microgrids using on-site generation control, demand response, and energy storage with robust security features at multiple installations. Fort Carson, Colorado, will be the initial development and demonstration site for use of plug-in electric vehicles as energy storage (also known as vehicle-to-grid or V2G).

  1. Native spider silk as a biological optical fiber

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huby, N.; Vié, V.; Renault, A.; Beaufils, S.; Lefèvre, T.; Paquet-Mercier, F.; Pézolet, M.; Bêche, B.

    2013-03-01

    In this study, we demonstrate the use of eco-friendly native spider silk as an efficient optical fiber in air, highly bent fibers, and physiological liquid. We also integrated the silk filament in a photonic chip made of polymer microstructures fabricated by UV lithography. The molding process is non-destructive for silk and leads to an efficient micro-optical coupling between silk and synthetic optical structures. These optical performances combined with the unique biocompatibility, bioresorbability, flexibility, and tensile strength of silk filaments pave the way for new applications in biological media and for original biophotonic purposes.

  2. The Lethal Toxin from Australian Funnel-Web Spiders Is Encoded by an Intronless Gene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pineda, Sandy Steffany; Wilson, David; Mattick, John S.; King, Glenn F.

    2012-01-01

    Australian funnel-web spiders are generally considered the most dangerous spiders in the world, with envenomations from the Sydney funnel-web spider Atrax robustus resulting in at least 14 human fatalities prior to the introduction of an effective anti-venom in 1980. The clinical envenomation syndrome resulting from bites by Australian funnel-web spiders is due to a single 42-residue peptide known as δ-hexatoxin. This peptide delays the inactivation of voltage-gated sodium channels, which results in spontaneous repetitive firing and prolongation of action potentials, thereby causing massive neurotransmitter release from both somatic and autonomic nerve endings. Here we show that δ-hexatoxin from the Australian funnel-web spider Hadronyche versuta is produced from an intronless gene that encodes a prepropeptide that is post-translationally processed to yield the mature toxin. A limited sampling of genes encoding unrelated venom peptides from this spider indicated that they are all intronless. Thus, in distinct contrast to cone snails and scorpions, whose toxin genes contain introns, spiders may have developed a quite different genetic strategy for evolving their venom peptidome. PMID:22928020

  3. Climatic Variables Do Not Directly Predict Spider Richness and Abundance in Semiarid Caatinga Vegetation, Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carvalho, Leonardo S; Sebastian, Nicholas; Araújo, Helder F P; Dias, Sidclay C; Venticinque, Eduardo; Brescovit, Antonio D; Vasconcellos, Alexandre

    2015-02-01

    Spiders are abundant in tropical ecosystems and exert predatory pressure on a wide variety of invertebrate populations and also serve as prey for many others organisms, being part of complex interrelationships influenced directly and indirectly by a myriad of factors. We examined the influence of biotic (i.e., prey availability) and abiotic (i.e., temperature, precipitation, relative humidity, real evapotranspiration) factors on species richness and abundance during a two-year period in the semiarid Caatinga vegetation in northeastern Brazil. Data were analyzed through partial autocorrelation functions, cross correlations, and a path analysis. A total of 2522 spiders were collected with beating tray, pit-fall traps, and malaise traps, comprising 91 species and 34 families. Spider abundance peaked in the rainy season. Our results suggest that total invertebrate abundance has a direct influence on spider richness and abundance, whereas the effects of precipitation were mainly indirectly related to most spider assemblage parameters. The increase in vegetation cover with the rainy season in the Caatinga provides more breeding and foraging sites for spiders and stimulates their activities. Additionally, rainfall in arid and semiarid ecosystems stimulated the activity and reproduction of many herbivore and detritivore invertebrates dependent on plant biomass and necromass consumption, leading to an increase in spider prey availability. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  4. The lethal toxin from Australian funnel-web spiders is encoded by an intronless gene.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandy Steffany Pineda

    Full Text Available Australian funnel-web spiders are generally considered the most dangerous spiders in the world, with envenomations from the Sydney funnel-web spider Atrax robustus resulting in at least 14 human fatalities prior to the introduction of an effective anti-venom in 1980. The clinical envenomation syndrome resulting from bites by Australian funnel-web spiders is due to a single 42-residue peptide known as δ-hexatoxin. This peptide delays the inactivation of voltage-gated sodium channels, which results in spontaneous repetitive firing and prolongation of action potentials, thereby causing massive neurotransmitter release from both somatic and autonomic nerve endings. Here we show that δ-hexatoxin from the Australian funnel-web spider Hadronyche versuta is produced from an intronless gene that encodes a prepropeptide that is post-translationally processed to yield the mature toxin. A limited sampling of genes encoding unrelated venom peptides from this spider indicated that they are all intronless. Thus, in distinct contrast to cone snails and scorpions, whose toxin genes contain introns, spiders may have developed a quite different genetic strategy for evolving their venom peptidome.

  5. A Tank Bromeliad Favors Spider Presence in a Neotropical Inundated Forest.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yann Hénaut

    Full Text Available Tank bromeliads are good models for understanding how climate change may affect biotic associations. We studied the relationships between spiders, the epiphytic tank bromeliad, Aechmea bracteata, and its associated ants in an inundated forest in Quintana Roo, Mexico, during a drought period while, exceptionally, this forest was dry and then during the flooding that followed. We compared spider abundance and diversity between 'Aechmea-areas' and 'control-areas' of the same surface area. We recorded six spider families: the Dipluridae, Ctenidae, Salticidae, Araneidae, Tetragnathidae and Linyphiidae among which the funnel-web tarantula, Ischnothele caudata, the only Dipluridae noted, was the most abundant. During the drought period, the spiders were more numerous in the Aechmea-areas than in the control-areas, but they were not obligatorily associated with the Aechmea. During the subsequent flooding, the spiders were concentrated in the A. bracteata patches, particularly those sheltering an ant colony. Also, a kind of specificity existed between certain spider taxa and ant species, but varied between the drought period and subsequent flooding. We conclude that climatic events modulate the relationship between A. bracteata patches and their associated fauna. Tank bromeliads, previously considered only for their ecological importance in supplying food and water during drought, may also be considered refuges for spiders during flooding. More generally, tank bromeliads have an important role in preserving non-specialized fauna in inundated forests.

  6. Psychophysiology of spider phobia in 8- to 12-year-old girls.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leutgeb, Verena; Schäfer, Axel; Köchel, Angelika; Scharmüller, Wilfried; Schienle, Anne

    2010-12-01

    The present investigation focused on late event-related potentials (ERPs) and facial electromyographic (EMG) activity in response to symptom provocation in 8- to 12-year-old spider phobic girls and compared results to those in non-fearful controls. Fourteen patients and 14 controls were presented with phobia-relevant, generally fear-inducing, disgust-inducing and affectively neutral pictures in an EEG/EMG session. ERPs were extracted in the time-windows 340-500ms (P300) and 550-770ms (late positive potential, LPP). Relative to controls, phobics showed enhanced amplitudes of P300 and LPP in response to spider pictures. This result is interpreted to reflect motivated attention to emotionally salient stimuli. Moreover, phobics showed enhanced average facial EMG activity of the levator labii and the corrugator supercilii in response to spider pictures, reflecting the negative valence and disgust relevance of spiders. Additionally, spider phobic girls relative to controls showed higher overall disgust proneness and heightened average facial EMG activity in both muscle regions in response to disgust stimuli, possibly revealing a disgust-based origin of spider phobia in children. These aspects should be considered in psychotherapeutic treatment of childhood spider phobia. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Heat Tolerance of the Brown Recluse Spider (Araneae: Sicariidae): Potential for Pest Control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cramer, Kenneth L; Zagar, Lindsey M

    2016-02-01

    The brown recluse spider, Loxosceles reclusa Gertsch & Mulaik, is a well-known venomous spider common in the south-central United States where infestations can reach thousands of individuals in a single structure. Bites from this spider pose a risk of dermonecrotic lesions (loxoscelism) or, rarely, more serious systemic effects. The heat tolerance of this spider is understudied but may offer an alternative pest control solution to pesticides or fumigation, both of which have their disadvantages. We subjected brown recluse spiders to increasing temperatures to establish the upper lethal temperature (LT). Using probit analysis to generate probability of mortality at increasing temperatures, we then exposed adult spiders to the observed LT50 to simulate whole-room heat treatment. Laboratory results predict exposure to 48°C for 130 min will achieve 100% mortality of adult spiders. Field tests need to be conducted to determine the efficacy of heat treatment in a variety of real-world situations. © The Authors 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  8. Brain dynamics in spider-phobic individuals exposed to phobia-relevant and other emotional stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michalowski, Jaroslaw M; Melzig, Christiane A; Weike, Almut I; Stockburger, Jessica; Schupp, Harald T; Hamm, Alfons O

    2009-06-01

    Dense sensor event-related brain potentials were measured in participants with spider phobia and nonfearful controls during viewing of phobia-relevant spider and standard emotional (pleasant, unpleasant, neutral) pictures. Irrespective of the picture content, spider phobia participants responded with larger P1 amplitudes than controls, suggesting increased vigilance in this group. Furthermore, spider phobia participants showed a significantly enlarged early posterior negativity (EPN) and late positive potential (LPP) during the encoding of phobia-relevant pictures compared to nonfearful controls. No group differences were observed for standard emotional materials indicating that these effects were specific to phobia-relevant material. Within group comparisons of the spider phobia group, though, revealed comparable EPN and LPP evoked by spider pictures and emotional (unpleasant and pleasant) picture contents. These results demonstrate a temporal unfolding in perceptual processing from unspecific vigilance (P1) to preferential responding (EPN and LPP) to phobia-relevant materials in the spider phobia group. However, at the level of early stimulus processing, these effects of increased attention seem to be related to emotional relevance of the stimulus cues rather than reflecting a fear-specific response.

  9. Mechanical behavior of silk during the evolution of orb-web spinning spiders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elices, Manuel; Plaza, Gustavo R; Arnedo, Miquel A; Pérez-Rigueiro, José; Torres, Fernando G; Guinea, Gustavo V

    2009-07-13

    The development of an accurate and reproducible approach to measuring the tensile behavior of spider silk has allowed characterizing and comparing the range of mechanical properties exhibited by different spider species with unprecedented detail. The comparison of silks spun by spiders belonging to different phylogenetic groups has revealed that evolution locked in many of the important properties of spider silks very early in the history of orb-web weaving spiders, despite the fact that the silk gland system is relatively isolated in physiological terms from the rest of the organism and should thus mutate quickly. The variations observed between species may be grouped in at least two patterns that are shown not to be related to phylogeny. Beyond the relevance of these results for the evolutionary biology of spiders and silks, the conservation of the basic traits observed in the mechanical behavior of spider silks is likely to set a limit to the range of properties that can be expected from artificial fibers bioinspired in natural silks.

  10. Phantom spiders 2: More notes on dubious spider species from Europe

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Breitling, Rainer

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available A surprisingly large number of European spider species have never been reliably rediscovered since their first description many decades ago. Most of these are probably synonymous with other species or unidentifiable, due to insufficient descriptions or missing type material. In this second part of a series on this topic, we discuss about 100 of these cases, focusing mainly on species described in the early 20th century by Pelegrín Franganillo Balboa and Gabor von Kolosváry, as well as a number of jumping spiders and various miscellaneous species. In most cases, the species turned out to be unidentifiable nomina dubia, but for some of them new synonymies could be established as follows: Alopecosa accentuata auct., nec (Latreille, 1817 = Alopecosa farinosa (Herman, 1879 syn. nov., comb. nov.; Alopecosa barbipes oreophila Simon, 1937 = Alopecosa farinosa (Herman, 1879 syn. nov., comb. nov.; Alopecosa mariae orientalis (Kolosváry, 1934 = Alopecosa mariae (Dahl, 1908 syn. nov.; Araneus angulatus afolius (Franganillo, 1909 and Araneus angulatus atricolor Simon, 1929 = Araneus angulatus Clerck, 1757 syn. nov.; Araneus angulatus castaneus (Franganillo, 1909 = Araneus pallidus (Olivier, 1789 syn. nov.; Araneus angulatus levifolius (Franganillo, 1909, Araneus angulatus niger (Franganillo, 1918 and Araneus angulatus nitidifolius (Franganillo, 1909 = Araneus angulatus Clerck 1757 syn. nov.; Araneus angulatus pallidus (Franganillo, 1909, Araneus angulatus crucinceptus (Franganillo, 1909, Araneus angulatus fuscus (Franganillo, 1909 and Araneus angulatus iberoi (Franganillo, 1909 = Araneus pallidus (Olivier, 1789 syn. nov.; Araneus circe strandi (Kolosváry, 1935 = Araneus circe (Audouin, 1826 syn. nov.; Araneus diadematus nemorosus Simon, 1929 and Araneus diadematus soror (Simon, 1874 = Araneus diadematus Clerck, 1757 syn. nov.; Araneus pyrenaeus (Simon, 1874 = Araneus pallidus (Olivier, 1789 syn. nov.; Araneus sericinus (Roewer, 1942 = Aculepeira armida

  11. Deer herbivory reduces web-building spider abundance by simplifying forest vegetation structure

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth J. Roberson

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Indirect ecological effects are a common feature of ecological systems, arising when one species affects interactions among two or more other species. We examined how browsing by white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus indirectly affected the abundance and composition of a web-building spider guild through their effects on the structure of the ground and shrub layers of northern hardwood forests. We examined paired plots consisting of deer-free and control plots in the Allegheny Plateau region Pennsylvania and Northern Highlands region of Wisconsin. We recorded the abundance of seven types of webs, each corresponding to a family of web-building spiders. We quantified vegetation structure and habitat suitability for the spiders by computing a web scaffold availability index (WSAI at 0.5 m and 1.0 m above the ground. At Northern Highlands sites, we recorded prey availability. Spider webs were twice as abundant in deer-free plots compared to control plots, while WSAI was 7–12 times greater in deerfree plots. Prey availability was lower in deer-free plots. With the exception of funnel web-builders, all spider web types were significantly more abundant in deer-free plots. Both deer exclusion and the geographic region of plots were significant predictors of spider community structure. In closed canopy forests with high browsing pressure, the low density of tree saplings and shrubs provides few locations for web-building spiders to anchor webs. Recruitment of these spiders may become coupled with forest disturbance events that increase tree and shrub recruitment. By modifying habitat structure, deer appear to indirectly modify arthropod food web interactions. As deer populations have increased in eastern North America over the past several decades, the effects of deer on web-building spiders may be widespread.

  12. Functional relations between locomotor performance traits in spiders and implications for evolutionary hypotheses

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    Taylor Phillip W

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Locomotor performance in ecologically relevant activities is often linked to individual fitness. Recent controversy over evolution of extreme sexual size dimorphism (SSD in spiders centres on the relationship between size and locomotor capacity in males. Advantages for large males running over horizontal surfaces and small males climbing vertically have been proposed. Models have implicitly treated running and climbing as functionally distinct activities and failed to consider the possibility that they reflect common underlying capacities. Findings We examine the relationship between maximum climbing and running performance in males of three spider species. Maximum running and climbing speeds were positively related in two orb-web spiders with high SSD (Argiope keyserlingi and Nephila plumipes, indicating that for these species assays of running and climbing largely reveal the same underlying capacities. Running and climbing speeds were not related in a jumping spider with low SSD (Jacksonoides queenslandica. We found no evidence of a performance trade-off between these activities. Conclusions In the web-spiders A. keyserlingi and N. plumipes good runners were also good climbers. This indicates that climbing and running largely represent a single locomotor performance characteristic in these spiders, but this was not the case for the jumping spider J. queenslandica. There was no evidence of a trade-off between maximum running and climbing speeds in these spiders. We highlight the need to establish the relationship between apparently disparate locomotor activities when testing alternative hypotheses that yield predictions about different locomotor activities. Analysis of slopes suggests greater potential for an evolutionary response on performance in the horizontal compared to vertical context in these spiders.

  13. Rapid Coeval Black Hole and Host Galaxy Growth in MRC 1138-262 : The Hungry Spider

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Seymour, N.; Altieri, B.; De Breuck, C.; Barthel, P.; Coia, D.; Conversi, L.; Dannerbauer, H.; Dey, A.; Dickinson, M.; Drouart, G.; Galametz, A.; Greve, T. R.; Haas, M.; Hatch, N.; Ibar, E.; Ivison, R.; Jarvis, M.; Kovacs, A.; Kurk, J.; Lehnert, M.; Miley, G.; Nesvadba, N.; Rawlings, J. I.; Rettura, A.; Rottgering, H.; Rocca-Volmerange, B.; Sanchez-Portal, M.; Santos, J. S.; Stern, D.; Stevens, J.; Valtchanov, I.; Vernet, J.; Wylezalek, D.

    2012-01-01

    We present a detailed study of the infrared spectral energy distribution of the high-redshift radio galaxy MRC 1138-26 at z = 2.156, also known as the Spiderweb Galaxy. By combining photometry from Spitzer, Herschel, and LABOCA we fit the rest-frame 5-300 mu m emission using a two-component,

  14. Compositional changes in spider (Araneae) assemblages along an urbanisation gradient near a Danish town

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Horváth, R.; Elek, Zoltán; Lövei, Gabor L

    2014-01-01

    Spider (Araneae) assemblages were studied over two years by pitfall trapping along an urbanisation gradient of forested habitats (rural forest - suburban forest fragment - urban forest fragment) in a Danish town, using the Globenet protocol. During the two years, we collected 4340 individuals of 90...... species, with money spiders (Linyphiidae) and wolf spiders (Lycosidae) being most numerous. One species, Ero aphana, was new to the Danish fauna. In 2004, 45-47 species were captured in the habitats in various stages of urbanisation, while in 2005 (with a smaller collection effort), 28 (urban) - 37 (rural...

  15. Subsocial behaviour and brood adoption in mixed-species colonies of two theridiid spiders

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Grinsted, Lena; Agnarsson, Ingi; Bilde, Trine

    2012-01-01

    , aggression and cooperation through behavioural experiments and examine the potential for adoption of foreign brood. Morphological and genetic analyses confirmed that colonies consisted of two related species Chikunia nigra (O.P. Cambridge, 1880) new combination (previously Chrysso nigra) and a yet...... as in territorial, colonial spiders. Mixed species spider colonies, involving closely related species, have rarely been documented. We examined social interactions in newly discovered mixed-species colonies of theridiid spiders on Bali, Indonesia. Our aim was to test the degree of intra- and interspecific tolerance...

  16. Adaptation of the spiders to the environment: the case of some Chilean species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Canals, Mauricio; Veloso, Claudio; Solís, Rigoberto

    2015-01-01

    Spiders are small arthropods that have colonized terrestrial environments. These impose three main problems: (i) terrestrial habitats have large fluctuations in temperature and humidity; (ii) the internal concentration of water is higher than the external environment in spiders, which exposes them continually to water loss; and (iii) their small body size determines a large surface/volume ratio, affecting energy exchange and influencing the life strategy. In this review we focus on body design, energetic, thermal selection, and water balance characteristics of some spider species present in Chile and correlate our results with ecological and behavioral information. Preferred temperatures and critical temperatures of Chilean spiders vary among species and individuals and may be adjusted by phenotypic plasticity. For example in the mygalomorph high-altitude spider Paraphysa parvula the preferred temperature is similar to that of the lowland spider Grammostola rosea; but while P. parvula shows phenotypic plasticity, G. rosea does not. The araneomorph spiders Loxosceles laeta and Scytodes globula have greater daily variations in preferred temperatures at twilight and during the night, which are set to the nocturnal activity rhythms of these species. They also present acclimation of the minimum critical temperatures. Dysdera crocata has a low preferred temperature adjusted to its favorite prey, the woodlouse. Spider metabolic rate is low compared to other arthropods, which may be associated with its sit and wait predatory strategy particularly in primitive hunter and weavers. In mygalomorph spiders the respiratory system is highly optimized with high oxygen conductance, for example G. rosea needs only a difference of 0.12-0.16 kPa in the oxygen partial pressure across the air-hemolymph barrier to satisfy its resting oxygen consumption demands. Water loss is a significant stress for spiders. Paraphysa parvula shows an evaporative water loss 10 times more than usual when

  17. A parasitoid wasp induces overwintering behaviour in its spider host.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stanislav Korenko

    Full Text Available Parasites and parasitoids control behaviors of their hosts. However, the origin of the behavior evoked by the parasitic organism has been rarely identified. It is also not known whether the manipulation is universal or host-specific. Polysphinctine wasps, koinobiont ectoparasitoids of several spider species that manipulate host web-spinning activity for their own protection during pupation, provide an ideal system to reveal the origin of the evoked behavior. Larva of Zatypota percontatoria performed species-specific manipulation of theridiid spiders, Neottiura bimaculata and Theridion varians, shortly before pupation. Parasitized N. bimaculata produced a dense web, whereas parasitized T. varians built a cupola-like structure. The larva pupated inside of either the dense web or the cupola-like structure. We discovered that unparasitized N. bimaculata produce an analogous dense web around their eggsacs and for themselves during winter, while T. varians construct an analogous 'cupola' only for overwintering. We induced analogous manipulation in unparasitized hosts by altering ambient conditions. We discovered that the behavior evoked by larvae in two hosts was functionally similar. The larva evoked protective behaviors that occur in unparasitized hosts only during specific life-history periods.

  18. Nectar Meals of a Mosquito-Specialist Spider

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Josiah O. Kuja

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Evarcha culicivora, an East African jumping spider, is known for feeding indirectly on vertebrate blood by actively choosing blood-carrying mosquitoes as prey. Using cold-anthrone tests to detect fructose, we demonstrate that E. culicivora also feeds on nectar. Field-collected individuals, found on the plant Lantana camara, tested positive for plant sugar (fructose. In the laboratory, E. culicivora tested positive for fructose after being kept with L. camara or one of another ten plant species (Aloe vera, Clerodendron magnifica, Hamelia patens, Lantana montevideo, Leonotis nepetaefolia, Parthenium hysterophorus, Ricinus communis, Senna didymobotrya, Striga asiatica, and Verbena trivernia. Our findings demonstrate that E. culicivora acquires fructose from its natural diet and can ingest fructose directly from plant nectaries. However, experiments in the laboratory also show that E. culicivora can obtain fructose indirectly by feeding on prey that have fed on fructose, implying a need to consider this possibility when field-collected spiders test positive for fructose. In laboratory tests, 53.5% of 1,215 small juveniles, but only 3.4% of 622 adult E. culicivora, left with plants for 24 hours, were positive for fructose. These findings, along with the field data, suggest that fructose is especially important for early-instar juveniles of E. culicivora.

  19. Functional anatomy of the pretarsus in whip spiders (Arachnida, Amblypygi).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolff, Jonas O; Seiter, Michael; Gorb, Stanislav N

    2015-11-01

    Whip spiders (Amblypygi) are a small, cryptic order of arachnids mainly distributed in the tropics. Some basal lineages (families Charinidae and Charontidae) have adhesive pads on the tips of their six walking legs. The present study describes the macro- and ultrastructure of these pads and investigates their contact mechanics and adhesive strength on smooth and rough substrates. Furthermore, the structure of the pretarsus and its kinematics are compared in Charon cf. grayi (with an adhesive pad) and Phrynus longipes (without an adhesive pad). The adhesive pads exhibit an elaborate structure with a unique combination of structural features of smooth and hairy foot pads including a long transversal contact zone performing lateral detachment, a thick internally-branched cuticle with longitudinal ribs and hexagonal surface microstructures with spatulate keels. The contact area of the pads on smooth glass is discontinuous due to the spatulate microstructures with a discontinuous detachment, which could be observed in vivo by high speed videography at a rate of up to 10,000 fps. Adhesive strength was measured with vertical whole animal pull-off tests, obtaining mean values between 55 and 200 kPa. The occurrence of viscous lipid secretions between microstructures was occasionally observed, which, however, seems not to be a necessity for good foothold. The results are discussed in relation to the whip spider's ecology and evolution. Structure-function relationships of the adhesive pads are compared to those of insects and vertebrates. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Compliant threads maximize spider silk connection strength and toughness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, Avery; Pugno, Nicola M.; Cranford, Steven W.

    2014-01-01

    Millions of years of evolution have adapted spider webs to achieve a range of functionalities, including the well-known capture of prey, with efficient use of material. One feature that has escaped extensive investigation is the silk-on-silk connection joints within spider webs, particularly from a structural mechanics perspective. We report a joint theoretical and computational analysis of an idealized silk-on-silk fibre junction. By modifying the theory of multiple peeling, we quantitatively compare the performance of the system while systematically increasing the rigidity of the anchor thread, by both scaling the stress–strain response and the introduction of an applied pre-strain. The results of our study indicate that compliance is a virtue—the more extensible the anchorage, the tougher and stronger the connection becomes. In consideration of the theoretical model, in comparison with rigid substrates, a compliant anchorage enormously increases the effective adhesion strength (work required to detach), independent of the adhered thread itself, attributed to a nonlinear alignment between thread and anchor (contact peeling angle). The results can direct novel engineering design principles to achieve possible load transfer from compliant fibre-to-fibre anchorages, be they silk-on-silk or another, as-yet undeveloped, system. PMID:25008083

  1. Damage, Self-Healing, and Hysteresis in Spider Silks

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Tommasi, D.; Puglisi, G.; Saccomandi, G.

    2010-01-01

    Abstract In this article, we propose a microstructure-based continuum model to describe the material behavior of spider silks. We suppose that the material is composed of a soft fraction with entropic elasticity and a hard, damageable fraction. The hard fraction models the presence of stiffer, crystal-rich, oriented regions and accounts for the effect of softening induced by the breaking of hydrogen bonds. To describe the observed presence of crystals with different size, composition, and orientation, this hard fraction is modeled as a distribution of materials with variable properties. The soft fraction describes the remaining regions of amorphous material and is here modeled as a wormlike chain. During stretching, we consider the effect of bond-breaking as a transition from the hard- to the soft-material phase. As we demonstrate, a crucial effect of bond-breaking that accompanies the softening of the material is an increase in contour length associated with chains unraveling. The model describes also the self-healing properties of the material by assuming partial bond reconnection upon unloading. Despite its simplicity, the proposed mechanical system reproduces the main experimental effects observed in cyclic loading of spider silks. Moreover, our approach is amenable to two- or three-dimensional extensions and may prove to be a useful tool in the field of microstructure optimization for bioinspired materials. PMID:20441758

  2. A parasitoid wasp induces overwintering behaviour in its spider host.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korenko, Stanislav; Pekár, Stano

    2011-01-01

    Parasites and parasitoids control behaviors of their hosts. However, the origin of the behavior evoked by the parasitic organism has been rarely identified. It is also not known whether the manipulation is universal or host-specific. Polysphinctine wasps, koinobiont ectoparasitoids of several spider species that manipulate host web-spinning activity for their own protection during pupation, provide an ideal system to reveal the origin of the evoked behavior. Larva of Zatypota percontatoria performed species-specific manipulation of theridiid spiders, Neottiura bimaculata and Theridion varians, shortly before pupation. Parasitized N. bimaculata produced a dense web, whereas parasitized T. varians built a cupola-like structure. The larva pupated inside of either the dense web or the cupola-like structure. We discovered that unparasitized N. bimaculata produce an analogous dense web around their eggsacs and for themselves during winter, while T. varians construct an analogous 'cupola' only for overwintering. We induced analogous manipulation in unparasitized hosts by altering ambient conditions. We discovered that the behavior evoked by larvae in two hosts was functionally similar. The larva evoked protective behaviors that occur in unparasitized hosts only during specific life-history periods.

  3. Tetracycline Reduces Kidney Damage Induced by Loxosceles Spider Venom

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cinthya Kimori Okamoto

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Envenomation by Loxosceles spider can result in two clinical manifestations: cutaneous and systemic loxoscelism, the latter of which includes renal failure. Although incidence of renal failure is low, it is the main cause of death, occurring mainly in children. The sphingomyelinase D (SMase D is the main component in Loxosceles spider venom responsible for local and systemic manifestations. This study aimed to investigate the toxicity of L. intermedia venom and SMase D on kidney cells, using both In vitro and in vivo models, and the possible involvement of endogenous metalloproteinases (MMP. Results demonstrated that venom and SMase D are able to cause death of human kidney cells by apoptosis, concomitant with activation and secretion of extracellular matrix metalloproteases, MMP-2 and MMP-9. Furthermore, cell death and MMP synthesis and secretion can be prevented by tetracycline. In a mouse model of systemic loxoscelism, Loxosceles venom-induced kidney failure was observed, which was abrogated by administration of tetracycline. These results indicate that MMPs may play an important role in Loxosceles venom-induced kidney injury and that tetracycline administration may be useful in the treatment of human systemic loxoscelism.

  4. Endogenous cortisol levels influence exposure therapy in spider phobia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lass-Hennemann, Johanna; Michael, Tanja

    2014-09-01

    Previous research in patients with phobia showed that the administration of glucocorticoids reduces fear in phobic situations and enhances exposure therapy. Glucocorticoids underlie a daily cycle with a peak in the morning and low levels during the evening and night. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether exposure is more effective when conducted in the morning when endogenous cortisol levels are high. Sixty patients meeting DSM IV criteria for specific phobia (animal type) were randomly assigned to one-session exposure treatment either at 08.00 a.m. (high cortisol group) or at 06.00 p.m. (low cortisol group). Participants returned for a posttreatment assessment one week after therapy and a follow-up assessment three months after therapy. Both groups showed good outcome, but patients treated in the morning exhibited significantly less fear of spiders in the behavioral approach test (BAT) and a trend for lower scores on the Fear of Spiders Questionnaire (FSQ) than patients treated in the evening. This effect was present at posttreatment and follow-up. Our findings indicate that exposure therapy is more effective in the morning than in the evening. We suggest that this may be due to higher endogenous cortisol levels in the morning group that enhance extinction memory. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Attention bias modification in specific fears: Spiders versus snakes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luo, Xijia; Ikani, Nessa; Barth, Anja; Rengers, Lea; Becker, Eni; Rinck, Mike

    2015-12-01

    Attention Bias Modification (ABM) is used to manipulate attention biases in anxiety disorders. It has been successful in reducing attention biases and anxious symptoms in social anxiety and generalized anxiety, but not yet in specific fears and phobias. We designed a new version of the dot-probe training task, aiming to train fearful participants' attention away from or towards pictures of threatening stimuli. Moreover, we studied whether the training also affected participants' avoidance behavior and their physical arousal upon being confronted with a real threat object. In Experiment 1, students with fear of spiders were trained. We found that the attention manipulation was successful, but the training failed to affect behavior or arousal. In Experiment 2, the same procedure was used on snake-fearful students. Again, attention was trained in the expected directions. Moreover, participants whose attention had been trained away from snakes showed lower physiological arousal upon being confronted with a real snake. The study involved healthy students with normal distribution of the fear of spider/snake. Future research with clinical sample could help with determining the generalizability of the current findings. The effect of ABM on specific phobia is still in question. The finding in the present study suggested the possibility to alter attentional bias with a dot-probe task with general positive stimuli and this training could even affect the behavior while encountering a real threat. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Predator perception of detritus and eggsac decorations spun by orb-web spiders Cyclosa octotuberculata: Do they function to camouflage the spiders?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wenjin GAN, Fengxiang LIU, Zengtao ZHANG, Daiqin LI

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Camouflage is one of the most widespread and powerful strategies that animals use to make detection/recognition more difficult. Many orb-web spiders of the genus Cyclosa add prey remains, plant debris, moults, and/or eggsacs to their webs called web decorations. Web decorations resembling spider body colour pattern have been considered to camouflage the spider from predators. While this camouflage is obvious from a human’s perspective, it has rarely been investigated from a predator’s perspective. In this study, we tested the visibility of web decorations by calculating chromatic and achromatic contrasts of detritus and eggsac decorations built by Cyclosa octotuberculata, against four different backgrounds viewed by both bird (e.g., blue tits and hymenopteran (e.g. wasps predators. We showed that both juvenile and adult spiders on webs with detritus or egg-sac decorations were undetectable by both hymenopteran and bird predators over short and long distances. Our results thus suggest that decorating webs with detritus or eggsacs by C. octotuberculata may camouflage the spider from both hymenopteran and bird predators in their common habitats [Current Zoology 56 (3: 379–387, 2010].

  7. Active optical sensor assessment of spider mite damage on greenhouse beans and cotton.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Daniel E; Latheef, Mohamed A

    2018-02-01

    The two-spotted spider mite, Tetranychus urticae Koch, is an important pest of cotton in mid-southern USA and causes yield reduction and deprivation in fiber fitness. Cotton and pinto beans grown in the greenhouse were infested with spider mites at the three-leaf and trifoliate stages, respectively. Spider mite damage on cotton and bean canopies expressed as normalized difference vegetation index indicative of changes in plant health was measured for 27 consecutive days. Plant health decreased incrementally for cotton until day 21 when complete destruction occurred. Thereafter, regrowth reversed decline in plant health. On spider mite treated beans, plant vigor plateaued until day 11 when plant health declined incrementally. Results indicate that pinto beans were better suited as a host plant than cotton for rearing T. urticae in the laboratory.

  8. The distribution of spiders and Harvestmen (Chelicerata) in the Dutch National Park "De Hoge Veluwe"

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hammen, van der L.

    1983-01-01

    A preliminary study is made of the distribution of Araneida and Opilionida (Chelicerata) in a National Park in The Netherlands. Special attention is paid to the influence of vegetation structure on the distribution of the spiders.

  9. Epigeic Spiders from Lowland Oak Woodlands in the South Moravia Region (Czech Republic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kamila Surovcová

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents spider faunistics from abandoned coppice oak forest stands located along the South Moravia region. Spiders were collected from May to July 2012 by pitfall trapping at eight different localities. We collected 1945 adult spiders representing 20 families, 53 genera, and 90 species. More than one-third of all the species are known to be xerothermophilous with ecological restrictions to open and partly shaded habitats such as forest-steppe and sparse forests which belong to endangered habitats along central Europe. The most abundant species were Pardosa alacris, P. lugubris and Arctosa lutetiana from the family Lycosidae. In the surveyed area, 24 species were found listed in the Red List of Threatened Species in the Czech Republic (CR – 1 species, EN – 2 species, VU – 15 species, LC – 6 species. In general, we discovered a substantially diversified spider community with a large presence of rare and endangered species characteristic for open and xeric habitats.

  10. Intersexual Trophic Niche Partitioning in an Ant-Eating spider (Araneae: Zodariidae)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pekár, Stanislav; Martisová, Martina; Bilde, T.

    2011-01-01

    lead to higher energy demands in females driven by fecundity selection, while males invest in mate searching. We tested predictions of the two hypotheses underlying intersexual trophic niche partitioning in a natural population of spiders. Zodarion jozefienae spiders specialize on Messor barbarus ants...... that are polymorphic in body size and hence comprise potential trophic niches for the spider, making this system well-suited to study intersexual trophic niche partitioning. Methodology/Principal Findings Comparative analysis of trophic morphology (the chelicerae) and body size of males, females and juveniles...... demonstrated highly female biased SSD (Sexual Size Dimorphism) in body size, body weight, and in the size of chelicerae, the latter arising from sex-specific growth patterns in trophic morphology. In the field, female spiders actively selected ant sub-castes that were larger than the average prey size...

  11. Prediction of abundance of forest spiders according to climate warming in South Korea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tae-Sung Kwon

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Distribution of spiders will be changed as climate warms. Abundance of spider species was predicted nationwide in South Korea. Abundance of spiders was projected using temperature species distribution model based on a nationwide data (366 forest sites according to climate change scenario RCP 4.5 and 8.5. The model predicts that 9 out of 17 species will increase in abundance while 8 species will decrease. Based on this finding, a qualitative prediction (increase or decrease was conducted on the species with more than 1% occurrence: 68 species are expected to decrease, 9 to increase, and 8 to change a little. In pooled estimation, 76 species (75% are expected to decrease, 18 species (18% to increase, and by 8 species (8% to have little change. The projection indicates that majority of spider species will decrease, but minority of species will increase as climate warms, suggesting great increase of remained species in lowlands.

  12. Contamination and Harm Relevant UCS-Expectancy Bias in Spider Phobic Individuals : Influence of Treatment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Overveld, Mark; de Jong, Peter J.; Huijding, Jorg; Peters, Madelon L.

    2010-01-01

    Phobic individuals expect aversive UCS's following encounters with phobic stimuli. Previous research using a thought-experiment procedure showed that contamination rather than harm-related outcome expectancies differentiated best between high and low spider fearful undergraduates. This study

  13. Mediterranean Recluse Spider, Loxosceles rufescens (Araneae: Sicariidae from Charkhab Cave, Southern Iran

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saber Sadeghi

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Background: The best-known dangerous spiders belong to the six genera. The genus Loxosceles or violin spiders are well known for their ability to cause skin necrosis or loxoscelism. All Loxosceles species have medical im­portance due to their necrotizing venom. The present article reports the occurrence of L. rufescens in Charkhab Cave, south of Iran (Larestan.Methods: The specimens were collected from the Charkhab Cave using handling forceps, paintbrush and aspirator and preserved in 96% ethanol.Results: Loxosceles rufescens, a medically important spider, is recorded from Charkhab Cave in Fars Province (southwest of Iran. Identification of L. rufescens was performed based on external morphology and the features of male genitalia.Conclusion: Presence of L. rufescens in south of Iran especially in a cave confirmed that this species is a widely distributed species in Iran. Therefore, cavers or cave visitors should be aware of this poisonous spider in caves.

  14. Envia garciai, a new genus and species of mygalomorph spiders (Araneae, Microstigmatidae from Brazilian Amazonia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ott Ricardo

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available The genus Envia, comprising only the new species Envia garciai, is proposed. These small mygalomorph spiders were abundantly collected in soil cores and litter samples in primary rain forests near Manaus, Amazonas, Brazil.

  15. Novel Spider 3D Woven Seamless ADEPT Aero-Shell, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Bally Ribbon Mills will demonstrate the proposed novel weaving technique and produce a one-piece spider weave for the ADEPT aero-shell. NASA AMES has been working...

  16. SpiderFab: Process for On-Orbit Construction of Kilometer-Scale Apertures

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — SpiderFab is a novel additive manufacturing technique which combines the techniques of fused deposition modeling (FDM) with methods derived from automated composite...

  17. Biomimetic Spider Leg Joints: A Review from Biomechanical Research to Compliant Robotic Actuators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefan Landkammer

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Due to their inherent compliance, soft actuated joints are becoming increasingly important for robotic applications, especially when human-robot-interactions are expected. Several of these flexible actuators are inspired by biological models. One perfect showpiece for biomimetic robots is the spider leg, because it combines lightweight design and graceful movements with powerful and dynamic actuation. Building on this motivation, the review article focuses on compliant robotic joints inspired by the function principle of the spider leg. The mechanism is introduced by an overview of existing biological and biomechanical research. Thereupon a classification of robots that are bio-inspired by spider joints is presented. Based on this, the biomimetic robot applications referring to the spider principle are identified and discussed.

  18. SpiderFab: Architecture for On-Orbit Construction of Kilometer-Scale Apertures

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The SpiderFab effort has investigated the value proposition and technical feasibility of radically changing the way we build and deploy spacecraft in order to escape...

  19. Captive spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi) arm-raise to solicit allo-grooming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheel, Matthew H; Edwards, Dori

    2012-03-01

    Old World monkeys solicit allo-grooming from conspecifics. However, there are relatively few studies of allo-grooming among spider monkeys, and descriptions of allo-grooming solicitation among spider monkeys are anecdotal. In this study, eighty-one hours of video, shot over eight weeks, captured 271 allo-grooming bouts among small groups of captive spider monkeys. Six of eight monkeys made heretofore unreported arm-raises that solicited higher than normal rates of allo-grooming. Allo-grooming bout durations following arm-raises also tended to be longer than bouts not preceded by arm-raises. The efficacy of the arm-raise at soliciting allo-grooming suggests spider monkeys are capable of intentional communication. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. The brown spider Loxosceles laeta: source of the remedy Tarentula cubensis?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richardson-Boedler, C

    2002-07-01

    The homeopathic remedy Tarentula cubensis (Cuban tarantula), used in homeopathy to treat abscesses with burning pains, gangrene, septicaemia, toxaemia, has been grouped by homeopathic authorities with either the mygalomorph or wolf spiders. The original specimen used for preparation of the mother tincture was decomposed, leaving the spider's exact identity in doubt. Investigation of the toxicological and clinical literature, compared with homeopathic materia medica, reveals the brown spider, Loxosceles laeta, indigenous to South America but present also in Mid- and North America, as a more likely source. Venoms of spiders of the genus Loxosceles cause severe necrotic arachnidism, as well as, in some cases, a life-threatening systemic reaction marked by renal failure, disseminated intravascular coagulation, thrombocytopeania, coma and convulsions.