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Sample records for brushtail possum trichosurus

  1. Molecular confirmation of an adenovirus in brushtail possums (Trichosurus vulpecula).

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    Thomson, Darelle; Meers, Joanne; Harrach, Balázs

    2002-02-26

    Partial genome characterisation of a non-cultivable marsupial adenovirus is described. Adenovirus-like particles were found by electron microscopy (EM) in the intestinal contents of brushtail possums (Trichosurus vulpecula) in New Zealand. Using degenerate PCR primers complementary to the most conserved genome regions of adenoviruses, the complete nucleotide sequence of the penton base gene, and partial nucleotide sequences of the DNA polymerase, hexon, and pVII genes were obtained. Phylogenetic analysis of the penton base gene strongly suggested that the brushtail possum adenovirus (candidate PoAdV-1) belongs to the recently proposed genus Atadenovirus. Sequence analysis of the PCR products amplified from the intestinal contents of brushtail possums originating from different geographical regions of New Zealand identified a single genotype. This is the first report of molecular confirmation of an adenovirus in a marsupial.

  2. Predicting summer site occupancy for an invasive species, the common brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula, in an urban environment.

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    Amy L Adams

    Full Text Available Invasive species are often favoured in fragmented, highly-modified, human-dominated landscapes such as urban areas. Because successful invasive urban adapters can occupy habitat that is quite different from that in their original range, effective management programmes for invasive species in urban areas require an understanding of distribution, habitat and resource requirements at a local scale that is tailored to the fine-scale heterogeneity typical of urban landscapes. The common brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula is one of New Zealand's most destructive invasive pest species. As brushtail possums traditionally occupy forest habitat, control in New Zealand has focussed on rural and forest habitats, and forest fragments in cities. However, as successful urban adapters, possums may be occupying a wider range of habitats. Here we use site occupancy methods to determine the distribution of brushtail possums across five distinguishable urban habitat types during summer, which is when possums have the greatest impacts on breeding birds. We collected data on possum presence/absence and habitat characteristics, including possible sources of supplementary food (fruit trees, vegetable gardens, compost heaps, and the availability of forest fragments from 150 survey locations. Predictive distribution models constructed using the programme PRESENCE revealed that while occupancy rates were highest in forest fragments, possums were still present across a large proportion of residential habitat with occupancy decreasing as housing density increased and green cover decreased. The presence of supplementary food sources was important in predicting possum occupancy, which may reflect the high nutritional value of these food types. Additionally, occupancy decreased as the proportion of forest fragment decreased, indicating the importance of forest fragments in determining possum distribution. Control operations to protect native birds from possum predation in

  3. Predicting summer site occupancy for an invasive species, the common brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula), in an urban environment.

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    Adams, Amy L; Dickinson, Katharine J M; Robertson, Bruce C; van Heezik, Yolanda

    2013-01-01

    Invasive species are often favoured in fragmented, highly-modified, human-dominated landscapes such as urban areas. Because successful invasive urban adapters can occupy habitat that is quite different from that in their original range, effective management programmes for invasive species in urban areas require an understanding of distribution, habitat and resource requirements at a local scale that is tailored to the fine-scale heterogeneity typical of urban landscapes. The common brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula) is one of New Zealand's most destructive invasive pest species. As brushtail possums traditionally occupy forest habitat, control in New Zealand has focussed on rural and forest habitats, and forest fragments in cities. However, as successful urban adapters, possums may be occupying a wider range of habitats. Here we use site occupancy methods to determine the distribution of brushtail possums across five distinguishable urban habitat types during summer, which is when possums have the greatest impacts on breeding birds. We collected data on possum presence/absence and habitat characteristics, including possible sources of supplementary food (fruit trees, vegetable gardens, compost heaps), and the availability of forest fragments from 150 survey locations. Predictive distribution models constructed using the programme PRESENCE revealed that while occupancy rates were highest in forest fragments, possums were still present across a large proportion of residential habitat with occupancy decreasing as housing density increased and green cover decreased. The presence of supplementary food sources was important in predicting possum occupancy, which may reflect the high nutritional value of these food types. Additionally, occupancy decreased as the proportion of forest fragment decreased, indicating the importance of forest fragments in determining possum distribution. Control operations to protect native birds from possum predation in cities should

  4. Triacylglycerol estolides, a new class of mammalian lipids, in the paracloacal gland of the brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula).

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    McLean, Stuart; Davies, Noel W; Nichols, David S; Mcleod, Bernie J

    2015-06-01

    The paracloacal glands are the most prevalent scent glands in marsupials, and previous investigation of their secretions in the brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula) has identified many odorous compounds together with large amounts of neutral lipids. We have examined the lipids by LC-MS, generating ammonium adducts of acylglycerols by electrospray ionisation. Chromatograms showed a complex mixture of coeluting acylglycerols, with m/z from about 404 to 1048. Plots of single [M + NH4](+) ions showed three groups of lipids clearly separated by retention time. MS-MS enabled triacylglycerols and diacylglycerol ethers to be identified from neutral losses and formation of diacylglycerols and other product ions. The earliest-eluting lipids were found to be triacylglycerol estolides, in which a fourth fatty acid forms an ester link with a hydroxy fatty acid attached to the glycerol chain. This is the first report of triacylglycerol estolides in animals. They form a complex mixture with the triacylglycerols and diacylglycerol ethers of lipids with short- and long-chain fatty acids with varying degrees of unsaturation. This complexity suggests a functional role, possibly in social communication.

  5. Assessing Movements of Brushtail Possums (Trichosurus vulpecula in Relation to Depopulated Buffer Zones for the Management of Wildlife Tuberculosis in New Zealand.

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    Andrea E Byrom

    Full Text Available In New Zealand, managing the threat of bovine tuberculosis (TB to livestock includes population reduction of potentially infectious wildlife, primarily the brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula. Population control is often targeted on forested buffer zones adjacent to farmland, in order to limit movements of possums across the buffer and reduce the risk of disease transmission to livestock. To assess the effectiveness of buffers in protecting livestock we analysed GPS telemetry data from possums located in untreated forest adjacent to buffers, and used these data to characterise patterns of movement that could lead to possums reaching farmland during the season when most dispersal occurs. Analyses of movement data showed that the direction of dispersal by sub-adult and adult possums and the extent of long exploratory movements were not biased toward forest buffers, even though these provided vacant habitat as suitable for possums as untreated forest. Instead, dispersal and exploratory movements were uncommon even for sub-adult possums and such events typically lasted <10 days. Dispersing possums settled predominantly in river valleys. A simulation model was developed for the 3-6-month dispersal season; it demonstrated a probability of <0.001 that an infected possum, originating from a low-density population with low disease prevalence in untreated forest, would move across 3 km of recently controlled forest buffer to reach farmland. Our results indicate short-term reduction in the risk of TB transmission from possums to livestock in New Zealand by the use of depopulated buffer zones, while acknowledging that the threat of disease spread from untreated forest is likely to increase over time as possum population density and, potentially, TB prevalence among those possums, increase in the buffer zone.

  6. Male-biased predation and its effect on paternity skew and life history in a population of common brushtail possums (Trichosurus vulpecula.

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    Jane L DeGabriel

    Full Text Available Differences in predation risk may exert strong selective pressures on life history strategies of populations. We investigated the potential for predation to shape male mating strategies in an arboreal folivore, the common brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula Kerr. We predicted that possums in a tropical population exposed to high natural levels of predation would grow faster and reproduce earlier compared to those in temperate populations with lower predation. We trapped a population of possums in eucalypt woodland in northern Australia each month to measure life history traits and used microsatellites to genotype all individuals and assign paternity to all offspring. We observed very high levels of male-biased predation, with almost 60% of marked male possums being eaten by pythons, presumably as a result of their greater mobility due to mate-searching. Male reproductive success was also highly skewed, with younger, larger males fathering significantly more offspring. This result contrasts with previous studies of temperate populations experiencing low levels of predation, where older males were larger and the most reproductively successful. Our results suggest that in populations exposed to high levels of predation, male possums invest in increased growth earlier in life, in order to maximise their mating potential. This strategy is feasible because predation limits competition from older males and means that delaying reproduction carries a risk of failing to reproduce at all. Our results show that life histories are variable traits that can match regional predation environments in mammal species with widespread distributions.

  7. Cost-Effective Large-Scale Occupancy-Abundance Monitoring of Invasive Brushtail Possums (Trichosurus Vulpecula on New Zealand's Public Conservation Land.

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    Andrew M Gormley

    Full Text Available There is interest in large-scale and unbiased monitoring of biodiversity status and trend, but there are few published examples of such monitoring being implemented. The New Zealand Department of Conservation is implementing a monitoring program that involves sampling selected biota at the vertices of an 8-km grid superimposed over the 8.6 million hectares of public conservation land that it manages. The introduced brushtail possum (Trichosurus Vulpecula is a major threat to some biota and is one taxon that they wish to monitor and report on. A pilot study revealed that the traditional method of monitoring possums using leg-hold traps set for two nights, termed the Trap Catch Index, was a constraint on the cost and logistical feasibility of the monitoring program. A phased implementation of the monitoring program was therefore conducted to collect data for evaluating the trade-off between possum occupancy-abundance estimates and the costs of sampling for one night rather than two nights. Reducing trapping effort from two nights to one night along four trap-lines reduced the estimated costs of monitoring by 5.8% due to savings in labour, food and allowances; it had a negligible effect on estimated national possum occupancy but resulted in slightly higher and less precise estimates of relative possum abundance. Monitoring possums for one night rather than two nights would provide an annual saving of NZ$72,400, with 271 fewer field days required for sampling. Possums occupied 60% (95% credible interval; 53-68 of sampling locations on New Zealand's public conservation land, with a mean relative abundance (Trap Catch Index of 2.7% (2.0-3.5. Possum occupancy and abundance were higher in forest than in non-forest habitats. Our case study illustrates the need to evaluate relationships between sampling design, cost, and occupancy-abundance estimates when designing and implementing large-scale occupancy-abundance monitoring programs.

  8. Do free-ranging common brushtail possums (Trichosurus vulpecula) play a role in the transmission of Toxoplasma gondii within a zoo environment?

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    Hill, N J; Dubey, J P; Vogelnest, L; Power, M L; Deane, E M

    2008-04-15

    To investigate the possible role of common brushtail possums (Trichosurus vulpecula) in the transmission of Toxoplasma gondii within a zoo environment, a serological survey of a free-ranging population resident within Taronga Zoo, Sydney, Australia was undertaken using the modified agglutination test (MAT). For comparison, the seroprevalence of T. gondii antibodies was also assessed in a possum population inhabiting a felid-free, non-urban woodland habitat. Six of 126 possums (4.8%) from the zoo population had antibodies to T. gondii with a MAT titre of 25 or higher, while in contrast, all of the 17 possums from woodland were seronegative. These observations suggest that possums were at a higher risk of exposure to the parasite as a consequence of co-existing with domestic, stray and captive felids associated with urbanisation. Screening of captive felids at the zoo indicated 16 of 23 individuals (67%) and all 6 species were seropositive for T. gondii, implicating them as a possible source of the parasite within the zoo setting. In addition captive, non-felid carnivores including the chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes), saltwater crocodile (Crocodylus porosus), dingo (Canis lupis) and leopard seal (Hydrurga leptonyx) were tested for the presence of T. gondii antibodies as these species predate and are a leading cause of death amongst zoo possums. In total, 5 of 23 individuals (22%) were seropositive, representing 2 of the 4 carnivorous species; the dingo and chimpanzee. These data suggest that carnivory was not a highly efficient pathway for the transmission of T. gondii and the free-ranging possum population posed minimal threat to the health of zoo animals.

  9. Lipid-formulated bcg as an oral-bait vaccine for tuberculosis: vaccine stability, efficacy, and palatability to brushtail possums (Trichosurus vulpecula) in New Zealand.

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    Cross, Martin L; Henderson, Ray J; Lambeth, Matthew R; Buddle, Bryce M; Aldwell, Frank E

    2009-07-01

    Bovine tuberculosis (Tb), due to infection with virulent Mycobacterium bovis, represents a threat to New Zealand agriculture due to vectorial transmission from wildlife reservoir species, principally the introduced Australian brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula). An oral-delivery wildlife vaccine has been developed to immunize possums against Tb, based on formulation of the human Tb vaccine (M. bovis BCG) in edible lipid matrices. Here BCG bacilli were shown to be stable in lipid matrix formulation for over 8 mo in freezer storage, for 7 wk under room temperature conditions, and for 3-5 wk under field conditions in a forest/pasture margin habitat (when maintained in weatherproof bait-delivery sachets). Samples of the lipid matrix were flavored and offered to captive possums in a bait-preference study: a combination of 10% chocolate powder with anise oil was identified as the most effective attractant/palatability combination. In a replicated field study, 85-100% of wild possums were shown to access chocolate-flavored lipid pellets, when baits were applied to areas holding approximately 600-800 possums/km(2). Finally, in a controlled vaccination/challenge study, chocolate-flavored lipid vaccine samples containing 10(8) BCG bacilli were fed to captive possums, which were subsequently challenged via aerosol exposure to virulent M. bovis: vaccine immunogenicity was confirmed, and protection was identified by significantly reduced postchallenge weight loss in vaccinated animals compared to nonvaccinated controls. These studies indicate that, appropriately flavored, lipid delivery matrices may form effective bait vaccines for the control of Tb in wildlife.

  10. In vitro hepatic microsomal metabolism of meloxicam in koalas (Phascolarctos cinereus), brushtail possums (Trichosurus vulpecula), ringtail possums (Pseudocheirus peregrinus), rats (Rattus norvegicus) and dogs (Canis lupus familiaris).

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    Kimble, B; Li, K M; Valtchev, P; Higgins, D P; Krockenberger, M B; Govendir, M

    2014-04-01

    Quantitative and qualitative aspects of in vitro metabolism of the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug meloxicam, mediated via hepatic microsomes of specialized foliage (Eucalyptus) eating marsupials (koalas and ringtail possums), a generalized foliage eating marsupial (brushtail possum), rats, and dogs, are described. Using a substrate depletion method, intrinsic hepatic clearance (in vitro Clint) was determined. Significantly, rates of oxidative transformation of meloxicam, likely mediated via cytochromes P450 (CYP), were higher in marsupials compared to rats or dogs. The rank order of apparent in vitro Clint was brushtail possums (n=3) (mean: 394μL/min/mg protein), >koalas (n=6) (50), >ringtail possums (n=2) (36) (with no significant difference between koalas and ringtail possums), >pooled rats (3.2)>pooled dogs (in which the rate of depletion, as calculated by the ratio of the substrate remaining was meloxicam, at a first-order rate constant, 5-hydroxymethyl metabolite (M1) was identified in the brushtail possums and the rat as the major metabolite. However, multiple hydroxyl metabolites were observed in the koala (M1, M2, and M3) and the ringtail possum (M1 and M3) indicating that these specialized foliage-eating marsupials have diverse oxidation capacity to metabolize meloxicam. Using a well-stirred model, the apparent in vitro Clint of meloxicam for koalas and the rat was further scaled to compare with published in vivo Cl. The closest in vivo Cl prediction from in vitro data of koalas was demonstrated with scaled hepatic Cl(total) (average fold error=1.9) excluding unbound fractions in the blood and microsome values; whereas for rats, the in-vitro scaled hepatic Cl fu(blood, mic), corrected with unbound fractions in the blood and microsome values, provided the best prediction (fold error=1.86). This study indicates that eutherians such as rats or dogs serve as inadequate models for dosage extrapolation of this drug to marsupials due to differences in

  11. Development of a porcine follicle-stimulating hormone and porcine luteinizing hormone induced ovulation protocol in the seasonally anoestrus brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula).

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    Glazier, A M; Molinia, F C

    2002-01-01

    Monovulatory brushtail possums (Trichosurus vulpecula) were stimulated with exogenous hormones during seasonal anoestrus to overcome ovarian insensitivity and induce ovulation. Seasonal ovarian insensitivity to pregnant mare serum gonadotrophin (PMSG) was overcome by a new porcine follicle-stimulating hormone/porcine luteinizing hormone (pFSH/pLH) protocol. This protocol was refined because the original treatment produced oocytes with abnormal morphology. Possums (n = 12 per group) received eight injections of pFSH of 1.5, 3.0 or 6.0 mg per injection (at 12-h intervals for 4 consecutive days). Ovulation was induced 12 h after the final pFSH injection with a 4-mg injection of pLH. Control animals were treated with the established protocol of a single injection of 15 IU of PMSG, followed 48 h later with an injection of 4 mg of pLH. All females responded to pFSH/pLH treatment, although optimal stimulation occurred in those receiving 8 x 3 mg pFSH, with 13-14 ovulations and recovery of 11-12 oocytes per female (8 x 1.5 mg pFSH: 13 ovulations, 8-9 oocytes; 8 x 6 mg pFSH: 7-8 ovulations, 4-5 oocytes). In contrast, only seven of 12 females responded to PMSG/pLH and, of those responding, only 2-3 ovulations occurred and only 1-2 oocytes per female were recovered. However, around 80% of oocytes recovered after PMSG/pLH treatment had undergone nuclear maturation (metaphase II/1st polar body) compared with around 60% of oocytes from pFSH/pLH-treated animals. In possums killed from 27 to 39 h after pLH treatment, ovulation onset was first observed from 30 h and by 31.5 h, all animals had completed ovulation. Laparoscopic artificial insemination (LAI) was performed on pFSH/pLH-treated animals to determine whether the oocytes produced were capable of fertilization. Uterine LAI performed 27.5-28.5 h after pLH treatment yielded 11/26 fertilized oocytes (up to 4-cell stage), whereas vaginal LAI performed 13-14 h after pLH treatment yielded 21/53 fertilized oocytes. A proportion of

  12. Seasonal changes in RFamide-related peptide-3 neurons in the hypothalamus of a seasonally breeding marsupial species, the brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula).

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    Harbid, Anan A; McLeod, Bernie J; Caraty, Alain; Anderson, Greg M

    2013-09-01

    RFamide-related peptide-3 (RFRP-3) neurons have been shown to inhibit gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) neuronal activity and hence reproduction in birds and eutherian mammals. They have also been proposed to have a direct hypophysiotropic effect on pituitary gonadotropin release. We used a new RFRP-3 antibody to characterize the cell body distribution and fiber projections of RFRP-3 neurons in the adult female brushtail possum brain. RFRP-3-immunoreactive cell bodies were found scattered within the dorsomedial hypothalamus and the dorsomedial half of the ventromedial hypothalamus, while GnRH neurons were observed scattered rostrocaudally along the lateral septum, rostral to the medial septum. There was a significant 2-fold increase in the RFRP-3 cell body number during the nonbreeding season (summer) compared to the breeding season (winter). Immunoreactive RFRP-3 fibers were distributed throughout the thalamus, preoptic area, and hypothalamus. Very few fibers were observed in the median eminence, especially in the external zone. Intraperitoneal injection of the retrograde tracer Fluoro-Gold resulted in the labeling of 40% of hypophysiotropic tuberoinfundibular dopaminergic (tyrosine hydroxylase-positive) neurons; however, <10% of zona incerta dopaminergic neurons (which are not hypophysiotropic) or RFRP-3 neurons were labeled with this tracer. These observations suggest that RFRP-3 exhibits a seasonal fluctuation in cell numbers, as seen in sheep and birds, which is consistent with an increased inhibitory tone during the nonbreeding season. The lack of RFRP-3 fibers in the median eminence and of Fluoro-Gold uptake from the periphery imply that the actions of this peptide occur primarily centrally rather than at the anterior pituitary gland.

  13. Creating new evolutionary pathways through bioinvasion: the population genetics of brushtail possums in New Zealand.

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    Sarre, Stephen D; Aitken, Nicola; Adamack, Aaron T; MacDonald, Anna J; Gruber, Bernd; Cowan, Phil

    2014-07-01

    Rapid increases in global trade and human movement have created novel mixtures of organisms bringing with them the potential to rapidly accelerate the evolution of new forms. The common brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula), introduced into New Zealand from Australia in the 19th century, is one such species having been sourced from multiple populations in its native range. Here, we combine microsatellite DNA- and GIS-based spatial data to show that T. vulpecula originating from at least two different Australian locations exhibit a population structure that is commensurate with their introduction history and which cannot be explained by landscape features alone. Most importantly, we identify a hybrid zone between the two subspecies which appears to function as a barrier to dispersal. When combined with previous genetic, morphological and captive studies, our data suggest that assortative mating between the two subspecies may operate at a behavioural or species recognition level rather than through fertilization, genetic incompatibility or developmental inhibition. Nevertheless, hybridization between the two subspecies of possum clearly occurs, creating the opportunity for novel genetic combinations that would not occur in their natural ranges and which is especially likely given that multiple contact zones occur in New Zealand. This discovery has implications for wildlife management in New Zealand because multiple contact zones are likely to influence the dispersal patterns of possums and because differential susceptibility to baiting with sodium fluoroacetate between possums of different origins may promote novel genetic forms.

  14. Conflicting demands on detoxification pathways influence how common brushtail possums choose their diets.

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    Marsh, Karen J; Wallis, Ian R; McLean, Stuart; Sorensen, Jennifer S; Foley, William J

    2006-08-01

    Most herbivores eat more and survive better when they have access to a variety of foods. One explanation involves the detoxification of plant secondary metabolites (PSMs). By feeding from a variety of plants that contain different classes of PSMs, animals can use multiple detoxification pathways and presumably consume more food. Although popular, this theory is difficult to test because it requires knowledge of the detoxification pathways of each PSM in the diet. We established that common brushtail possums (Trichosurus vulpecula) use various combinations of oxidation, hydrolysis, and conjugation with glucuronic acid (GA) or glycine to detoxify six PSMs. Compared to their ingestion of a single PSM, possums ate more when offered a choice between two diets containing PSMs that require apparently independent detoxification pathways (benzoate and 1,8-cineole, benzoate and p-cymene, benzoate and orcinol, benzoate and salicin, or orcinol and 1,8-cineole). However, possums still did not eat as much of these diets as they did of a basal diet free of PSMs. This suggests that detoxification pathways are never independent, but are separated instead by degrees. In contrast, possums offered a choice of two PSMs that require competing detoxification pathways (1,8-cineole and p-cymene, 1,8-cineole and salicin, or orcinol and salicin) ate no more than when offered diets containing one of the compounds. There was an exception: even though both rutin and orcinol are detoxified via conjugation with GA, the feeding behavior of possums did not suggest competition for detoxification pathways. This implies that the supply of GA is not limiting. This study provides the first convincing evidence that herbivorous mammals can eat more by selecting mixed diets with a diversity of PSMs that make full use of their detoxification potential. It also emphasizes that other behavioral and physiological factors, such as transient food aversions, influence feeding behavior.

  15. Traumatic injuries occurring in possums and gliders in the Blue Mountains, New South Wales.

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    Hemsley, S; Canfield, P

    1993-10-01

    Twenty common brushtail possums (Trichosurus vulpecula), 23 ringtail possums (Pseudocheirus peregrinus) and five sugar gliders (Petaurus breviceps) from the Blue Mountains, New South Wales, Australia were evaluated for traumatic injuries between 1989 and 1990. Ten brushtail possums and five ringtail possums were hit by motor vehicles with injuries primarily to the anterior of the body. Fifteen ringtail possums and all sugar gliders were attacked by cats. Four brushtail possums were attacked by dogs. The remaining nine possums had evidence of intraspecific fighting (n = 2) or other types of trauma. Brushtail and ringtail possums were presented primarily during their main breeding seasons. There was no sex predilection. More ringtail than brushtail possums were subadults and these were injured primarily at the time of dispersal.

  16. Determination of villous rigidity in the distal ileum of the possum (Trichosurus vulpecula.

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    Yuen Feung Lim

    Full Text Available We investigated the passive mechanical properties of villi in ex vivo preparations of sections of the wall of the distal ileum from the brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula by using a flow cell to impose physiological and supra-physiological levels of shear stress on the tips of villi. We directly determined the stress applied from the magnitude of the local velocities in the stress inducing flow and additionally mapped the patterns of flow around isolated villi by tracking the trajectories of introduced 3 µm microbeads with bright field micro particle image velocimetry (mPIV. Ileal villi were relatively rigid along their entire length (mean 550 µm, and exhibited no noticeable bending even at flow rates that exceeded calculated normal physiological shear stress (>0.5 mPa. However, movement of villus tips indicated that the whole rigid structure of a villus could pivot about the base, likely from laxity at the point of union of the villous shaft with the underlying mucosa. Flow moved upward toward the tip on the upper portions of isolated villi on the surface facing the flow and downward toward the base on the downstream surface. The fluid in sites at distances greater than 150 µm below the villous tips was virtually stagnant indicating that significant convective mixing in the lower intervillous spaces was unlikely. Together the findings indicate that mixing and absorption is likely to be confined to the tips of villi under conditions where the villi and intestinal wall are immobile and is unlikely to be greatly augmented by passive bending of the shafts of villi.

  17. Release and bioactivity of PACA nanoparticles containing D-Lys⁶-GnRH for brushtail possum fertility control.

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    Kafka, Alexandra P; McLeod, Bernie J; Rades, Thomas; McDowell, Arlene

    2011-02-10

    Poly(ethylcyanoacrylate) (PECA) nanoparticles containing the chemical sterilitant D-Lys⁶-GnRH were prepared by an in situ interfacial polymerization technique. Their potential as a peroral delivery system for biocontrol of the brushtail possum, a major pest species in New Zealand, was evaluated. Peptide release from resulting particles was studied in vitro in artificial gastric juice (AGJ), simulated intestinal fluids (SIF) and brushtail possum plasma. The nanoparticles released a small fraction of bioactive over 6h in AGJ and SIF (<5%), while staying intact and retaining fractions of intact D-Lys⁶-GnRH. In contrast, 60% of D-Lys⁶-GnRH was released after 1h in possum plasma. The nanoparticles were also administered in vivo into the caecum of brushtail possums. A significant biological response, measured as an increase in plasma luteinizing hormone (LH), was evident 10 min after administration. This demonstrates not only that PECA nanoparticles were able to facilitate the uptake of D-Lys⁶-GnRH from the caecum into systemic circulation but also that sufficient bioactive peptide reached the pituitary to exert a significant LH response following GnRH receptor mediated endocytosis. Hence, it can be concluded that PECA nanoparticles comprise a promising formulation strategy for the peroral delivery of the chemical sterilitant D-Lys⁶-GnRH to the brushtail possum in New Zealand.

  18. Concurrent progressive-ratio and fixed-ratio schedule performance under geometric and arithmetic progressions by brushtail possums.

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    Cameron, Kristie E; Clarke, Katrina H; Bizo, Lewis A; Starkey, Nicola J

    2016-05-01

    The aim of this study was to compare the demand for food under concurrent progressive- and fixed-ratio schedules. Twelve brushtail possums participated in 16 conditions where schedule, progression and food type were varied. An incrementing schedule increased the fixed-ratio requirement within and across sessions and was arranged as either a geometric sequence (base 2), or an arithmetic sequence (step 5). Two foods were tested: a flaked barley and coco-pop(®) mix versus rolled oats. Overall, performance was similar for most possums in the within- and across-session incrementing schedules. An analysis of the estimates of essential value and break point produced the same account of demand for foods under the geometric or arithmetic progressions and within- and across-session procedures for 8 of 12 possums. Six possums showed higher demand for rolled oats compared to flaked barley, and two possums showed higher demand for flaked barley compared to rolled oats. Incrementing ratios within, rather than between sessions using an arithmetic progression was demonstrated to be a time efficient procedure for investigating demand for different food types without affecting conclusions about the relative demand for those foods.

  19. Clinical, microbiological and pathological findings of Mycobacterium ulcerans infection in three Australian Possum species.

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    Carolyn R O'Brien

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Buruli ulcer (BU is a skin disease caused by Mycobacterium ulcerans, with endemicity predominantly in sub-Saharan Africa and south-eastern Australia. The mode of transmission and the environmental reservoir(s of the bacterium and remain elusive. Real-time PCR investigations have detected M. ulcerans DNA in a variety of Australian environmental samples, including the faeces of native possums with and without clinical evidence of infection. This report seeks to expand on previously published findings by the authors' investigative group with regards to clinical and subclinical disease in selected wild possum species in BU-endemic areas of Victoria, Australia. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Twenty-seven clinical cases of M. ulcerans infection in free-ranging possums from southeastern Australia were identified retrospectively and prospectively between 1998-2011. Common ringtail possums (Pseudocheirus peregrinus, a common brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula and a mountain brushtail possum (Trichosurus cunninghami were included in the clinically affected cohort. Most clinically apparent cases were adults with solitary or multiple ulcerative cutaneous lesions, generally confined to the face, limbs and/or tail. The disease was minor and self-limiting in the case of both Trichosurus spp. possums. In contrast, many of the common ringtail possums had cutaneous disease involving disparate anatomical sites, and in four cases there was evidence of systemic disease at post mortem examination. Where tested using real-time PCR targeted at IS2404, animals typically had significant levels of M. ulcerans DNA throughout the gut and/or faeces. A further 12 possums without cutaneous lesions were found to have PCR-positive gut contents and/or faeces (subclinical cases, and in one of these the organism was cultured from liver tissue. Comparisons were made between clinically and subclinically affected possums, and 61 PCR-negative, non-affected individuals

  20. 新西兰的负鼠——一场尚未完结的与外来入侵有袋类的较量(英)%The common brushtail possum in New Zealand-an unfinished battle with an alien invasive marsupial

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2002-01-01

    Brushtail possums (Trichosurus vulpecula) were introduced into New Zealand from Australia in the mid 1800′s to establish a fur industry.They became a major invasive pest damaging native biodiversity by browsing and predation,and harming the farm industry by acting as reservoir of bovine tuberculosis.Management of possums includes eradication from some offshore islands and control by trapping,shooting and poisoning on the mainland.Although successfully eradicated from some islands and greatly reduced in abundance in some areas with high conservation value,possum distribution on the mainland has continued to expand.They are still at very high density in some areas and continue to cause biodiversity loss in this country.The efficiency of conventional control methods is affected by limited funding and rapid population recovery caused by re-colonisation,higher reproduction rate and survival rate of possums in response to reduced density.Biological control,especially immunocontraception,is now being investigated as a cheaper and more effective option.Recent studies indicate that the polygynous mating system and some responses of male possums to female sterilisation would help the success of a potential virus-vectored immunocontraception method.%为发展毛皮工业,新西兰19世纪中叶从澳大利亚引入刷尾负鼠(Trichosurus vulpecula),后成为新西兰一大害兽.刷尾负鼠不仅因破坏当地植被、捕食鸟蛋等而严重影响了新西兰的生物多样性,而且因其传播结核病菌对当地畜牧业造成了很大损失.新西兰每年花费巨额资金来控制这一害兽.虽然刷尾负鼠在一些孤立的岛屿和重点自然保护区已完全被消灭或得到有效的控制,但在新西兰大部分地区其分布却还在扩展,依然威胁着新西兰的生物多样性和农牧业生产.传统的控制方法包括兽夹捕杀、射杀和药物灭杀,其效果不佳的主要原因是:1) 受资金的限制;2) 小面积控制后因为种

  1. Incorporating Field Studies into Species Distribution and Climate Change Modelling: A Case Study of the Koomal Trichosurus vulpecula hypoleucus (Phalangeridae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molloy, Shaun W; Davis, Robert A; van Etten, Eddie J B

    2016-01-01

    Species distribution models (SDMs) are an effective way of predicting the potential distribution of species and their response to environmental change. Most SDMs apply presence data to a relatively generic set of predictive variables such as climate. However, this weakens the modelling process by overlooking the responses to more cryptic predictive variables. In this paper we demonstrate a means by which data gathered from an intensive animal trapping study can be used to enhance SDMs by combining field data with bioclimatic modelling techniques to determine the future potential distribution for the koomal (Trichosurus vulpecula hypoleucus). The koomal is a geographically isolated subspecies of the common brushtail possum, endemic to south-western Australia. Since European settlement this taxon has undergone a significant reduction in distribution due to its vulnerability to habitat fragmentation, introduced predators and tree/shrub dieback caused by a virulent group of plant pathogens of the genus Phytophthora. An intensive field study found: 1) the home range for the koomal rarely exceeded 1 km in in length at its widest point; 2) areas heavily infested with dieback were not occupied; 3) gap crossing between patches (>400 m) was common behaviour; 4) koomal presence was linked to the extent of suitable vegetation; and 5) where the needs of koomal were met, populations in fragments were demographically similar to those found in contiguous landscapes. We used this information to resolve a more accurate SDM for the koomal than that created from bioclimatic data alone. Specifically, we refined spatial coverages of remnant vegetation and dieback, to develop a set of variables that we combined with selected bioclimatic variables to construct models. We conclude that the utility value of an SDM can be enhanced and given greater resolution by identifying variables that reflect observed, species-specific responses to landscape parameters and incorporating these responses

  2. Combining aspirin with cholecalciferol (vitamin D3)--a potential new tool for controlling possum populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morgan, David R; Arrow, Jane; Smith, Mark P

    2013-01-01

    The introduced Australian brushtail possum is a major vertebrate pest in New Zealand, with impacts on conservation and agriculture being managed largely through poisoning operations. Cholecalciferol (vitamin D3) is registered for use in controlling possums and despite its many advantages it is expensive and relatively inhumane. Combination of a high proportion of aspirin with a low proportion of cholecalciferol was effective in killing high proportions of groups of acclimatised, caged possums: this is attributed to both an unexpectedly high toxicity of the type of cholecalciferol used, and a proposed synergistic mechanism between the two compounds. Death was caused by localised damage to heart ventricles by aspirin, and inhibition of tissue repair by both aspirin and cholecalciferol. The observed toxicosis had lower impact on the welfare of possums than either compound administered alone, particularly aspirin alone. Residue analyses of bait remains in the GI tract suggested a low risk of secondary poisoning by either compound. The combination of cholecalciferol and aspirin has the potential to meet key requirements of cost-effectiveness and humaneness in controlling possum populations, but the effect of the combination in non-target species has yet to be tested.

  3. Combining aspirin with cholecalciferol (vitamin D3--a potential new tool for controlling possum populations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David R Morgan

    Full Text Available The introduced Australian brushtail possum is a major vertebrate pest in New Zealand, with impacts on conservation and agriculture being managed largely through poisoning operations. Cholecalciferol (vitamin D3 is registered for use in controlling possums and despite its many advantages it is expensive and relatively inhumane. Combination of a high proportion of aspirin with a low proportion of cholecalciferol was effective in killing high proportions of groups of acclimatised, caged possums: this is attributed to both an unexpectedly high toxicity of the type of cholecalciferol used, and a proposed synergistic mechanism between the two compounds. Death was caused by localised damage to heart ventricles by aspirin, and inhibition of tissue repair by both aspirin and cholecalciferol. The observed toxicosis had lower impact on the welfare of possums than either compound administered alone, particularly aspirin alone. Residue analyses of bait remains in the GI tract suggested a low risk of secondary poisoning by either compound. The combination of cholecalciferol and aspirin has the potential to meet key requirements of cost-effectiveness and humaneness in controlling possum populations, but the effect of the combination in non-target species has yet to be tested.

  4. The Ambiguous Voices of Possum

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Have, Iben

    2016-01-01

    A categorization of the levels of the soundtrack will provide the foundation for analytical notions on how the soundtrack of Possum challenges the recipient by operating in a field between diegetic and nondiegetic, realistic and supernatural, and human and animal sounds.......A categorization of the levels of the soundtrack will provide the foundation for analytical notions on how the soundtrack of Possum challenges the recipient by operating in a field between diegetic and nondiegetic, realistic and supernatural, and human and animal sounds....

  5. Comparative vascular audit using the POSSUM scoring system.

    OpenAIRE

    Copeland, G. P.; Jones, D.; Wilcox, A; Harris, P.L.

    1993-01-01

    Comparative audit using overall mortality and morbidity figures can be misleading as they do not take into account variations in surgical procedure and patient fitness. To examine these effects we have compared vascular surgery in two differing hospitals, during a similar 9-month period, using the POSSUM scoring system. In one unit, 255 patients underwent vascular surgery with an operative mortality of 9.4%, and morbidity of 37.3%. In the other unit, 89 patients underwent vascular procedures ...

  6. Assessment of surgical outcome in general surgery using Portsmouth possum scoring

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tejaswini Vallabha

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective: The Physiological and Operative Severity Score for the enUmeration of Mortality and morbidity (POSSUM and its modification, Portsmouth POSSUM, are considered as methods of risk scoring. Application of this scoring system helps in assessing the quality of the health care provided& surgical outcome. Its utilization in our country where the level of healthcare and resources differ is limited. Hence, a prospective study to assess the outcome of surgeries using P Possum scoring system in a teaching hospital at district level and compare with other health care facilities with similar and different settings was taken up. Methods: 175 major surgeries were studied. Using P-POSSUM equation, predicted mortality rates were calculated & compared with the actual outcome. The predicted mortality & actual outcome was compared with other studies done in similar and different health care levels. Results: An observed to expected ratio of 0.96 was obtained, indicating there was no significant difference between expected to observed mortality rates suggesting a reasonably good quality of outcome in comparison with other health care systems. Conclusion: The quality of surgical care provided and surgical outcome are comparable to other health care systems with observed to expected mortality ratio being nearly same. P Possum can be used as a tool for outcome audits.

  7. A major role for mammals in the ecology of Mycobacterium ulcerans.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Janet A M Fyfe

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Mycobacterium ulcerans is the causative agent of Buruli ulcer (BU, a destructive skin disease found predominantly in sub-Saharan Africa and south-eastern Australia. The precise mode(s of transmission and environmental reservoir(s remain unknown, but several studies have explored the role of aquatic invertebrate species. The purpose of this study was to investigate the environmental distribution of M. ulcerans in south-eastern Australia. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: A range of environmental samples was collected from Point Lonsdale (a small coastal town southwest of Melbourne, Australia, endemic for BU and from areas with fewer or no reported incident cases of BU. Mycobacterium ulcerans DNA was detected at low levels by real-time PCR in soil, sediment, water residue, aquatic plant biofilm and terrestrial vegetation collected in Point Lonsdale. Higher levels of M. ulcerans DNA were detected in the faeces of common ringtail (Pseudocheirus peregrinus and common brushtail (Trichosurus vulpecula possums. Systematic testing of possum faeces revealed that M. ulcerans DNA could be detected in 41% of faecal samples collected in Point Lonsdale compared with less than 1% of faecal samples collected from non-endemic areas (p<0.0001. Capture and clinical examination of live possums in Point Lonsdale validated the accuracy of the predictive value of the faecal surveys by revealing that 38% of ringtail possums and 24% of brushtail possums had laboratory-confirmed M. ulcerans skin lesions and/or M. ulcerans PCR positive faeces. Whole genome sequencing revealed an extremely close genetic relationship between human and possum M. ulcerans isolates. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The prevailing wisdom is that M. ulcerans is an aquatic pathogen and that BU is acquired by contact with certain aquatic environments (swamps, slow-flowing water. Now, after 70 years of research, we propose a transmission model for BU in which terrestrial mammals are implicated as

  8. Managing and eradicating wildlife tuberculosis in New Zealand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warburton, B; Livingstone, P

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Tuberculosis (TB) due to Mycobacterium bovis infection was first identified in brushtail possums (Trichosurus vulpecula) in New Zealand in the late 1960s. Since the early 1970s, possums in New Zealand have been controlled as part of an ongoing strategy to manage the disease in livestock. The TB management authority (TBfree New Zealand) currently implements three strategic choices for disease-related possum control: firstly TB eradication in areas selected for eradication of the disease from livestock and wildlife, secondly Free Area Protection in areas in which possums are maintained at low densities, normally along a Vector Risk Area (VRA) boundary, and thirdly Infected Herd Suppression, which includes the remaining parts of VRA where possums are targeted to minimise the infection risk to livestock. Management is primarily through a range of lethal control options. The frequency and intensity of control is driven by a requirement to reduce populations to very low levels (usually to a trap-catch index below 2%), then to hold them at or below this level for 5–10 years to ensure disease eradication.Lethal possum control is implemented using aerial- and ground-based applications, under various regulatory and operational constraints. Extensive research has been undertaken aimed at improving the efficacy and efficiency of control. Aerial applications use sodium fluoroacetate (1080) bait for controlling possums over extensive and rugged areas of forest that are difficult to access by foot. Ground-based control uses a range of toxins (primarily, a potassium cyanide-based product) and traps. In the last 5 years there has been a shift from simple possum population control to the collection of spatial data on possum presence/absence and relative density, using simple possum detection devices using global positioning system-supported data collection tools, with recovery of possum carcasses for diagnostic necropsy. Such data provide information subsequently used in

  9. PoSSuM v.2.0: data update and a new function for investigating ligand analogs and target proteins of small-molecule drugs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ito, Jun-ichi; Ikeda, Kazuyoshi; Yamada, Kazunori; Mizuguchi, Kenji; Tomii, Kentaro

    2015-01-01

    PoSSuM (http://possum.cbrc.jp/PoSSuM/) is a database for detecting similar small-molecule binding sites on proteins. Since its initial release in 2011, PoSSuM has grown to provide information related to 49 million pairs of similar binding sites discovered among 5.5 million known and putative binding sites. This enlargement of the database is expected to enhance opportunities for biological and pharmaceutical applications, such as predictions of new functions and drug discovery. In this release, we have provided a new service named PoSSuM drug search (PoSSuMds) at http://possum.cbrc.jp/PoSSuM/drug_search/, in which we selected 194 approved drug compounds retrieved from ChEMBL, and detected their known binding pockets and pockets that are similar to them. Users can access and download all of the search results via a new web interface, which is useful for finding ligand analogs as well as potential target proteins. Furthermore, PoSSuMds enables users to explore the binding pocket universe within PoSSuM. Additionally, we have improved the web interface with new functions, including sortable tables and a viewer for visualizing and downloading superimposed pockets.

  10. Reproduction and embryonic diapause in a marsupial: insights from captive female Honey possums, Tarsipes rostratus (Tarsipedidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oates, J E; Bradshaw, F J; Bradshaw, S D; Stead-Richardson, E J; Philippe, D L

    2007-02-01

    The reproductive physiology of the polyoestrous Honey possum (Tarsipes rostratus) is virtually unknown except that it shares with the kangaroos and wallabies the phenomenon of embryonic diapause. Its tiny size necessitates an alternate approach to study their reproductive cycle. We have accordingly utilised faecal steroid analysis. Baseline faecal cortisol levels in the Honey possum, at 4.1+/-0.3 mug g-1, are approximately 100-fold those of other mammals and are associated with adrenal glands that, on a mass-specific basis, are almost 10 times larger than the adrenals of other mammalian, including marsupial, species. Histological examination of the adrenal glands revealed no abnormalities, however, but their hypertrophy and the peaks recorded in faecal levels following disturbance suggest that the Honey possum is vulnerable to chronic stressors in the captive situation. Mean faecal progestagens (124.4+/-107.3 ng g-1) and oestradiol-17beta (4.1+/-1.1 ng g-1) in 4 non-pregnant females maintained long term were not different from those of 5 pregnant females (101.4+/-61.0 ng g-1 and 4.3+/-1.5 ng g-1, respectively) and, on analysis, revealed a cyclicity of 24+/-1.2 days. We would predict from this evidence that the gestation period, in the absence of lactation, is approximately 23 days. Four of the pregnant females, monitored from July to November under conditions of 10:14 L:D photoperiod, showed a fall in levels of progestagens from 175.9+/-10.8 ng g-1 in July and August to 30.9+/-9.4 ng g-1 in October, while mean faecal levels of oestradiol-17beta increased from 3.8+/-0.4 ng g-1 in July to 5.7+/-0.3 ng g-1 in October. September and October are months of peak reproductive activity in the wild and we suggest that these hormonal modulations may represent an entrained reproductive rhythm. Blastocysts appear to develop at varying rates, both within the one uterus, and between the two uteri of a single female. In addition, the time taken to reach the blastocyst stage may be

  11. Diversity of Cryptosporidium in brush-tailed rock-wallabies (Petrogale penicillata managed within a species recovery programme

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elke T. Vermeulen

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Host–parasite relationships are likely to be impacted by conservation management practices, potentially increasing the susceptibility of wildlife to emerging disease. Cryptosporidium, a parasitic protozoan genus comprising host-adapted and host-specific species, was used as an indicator of parasite movement between populations of a threatened marsupial, the brush-tailed rock-wallaby (Petrogale penicillata. PCR screening of faecal samples (n = 324 from seven wallaby populations across New South Wales, identified Cryptosporidium in 7.1% of samples. The sampled populations were characterised as captive, supplemented and wild populations. No significant difference was found in Cryptosporidium detection between each of the three population categories. The positive samples, detected using 18S rRNA screening, were amplified using the actin and gp60 loci. Multi-locus sequence analysis revealed the presence of Cryptosporidium fayeri, a marsupial-specific species, and C. meleagridis, which has a broad host range, in samples from the three population categories. Cryptosporidium meleagridis has not been previously reported in marsupials and hence the pathogenicity of this species to brush-tailed rock-wallabies is unknown. Based on these findings, we recommend further study into Cryptosporidium in animals undergoing conservation management, as well as surveying wild animals in release areas, to further understand the diversity and epidemiology of this parasite in threatened wildlife.

  12. Playing Possum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Enrico Euli

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Our society is drenched in the catastrophe; where the growth of financial crisis, environmental cataclysm and militarization represents its gaudiest and mortifying phenomena. Humans struggle with depression, sense of impotence, anguish towards a future considered a threat.  A possibility to keep us alive can be represented by the enhancement of our ability in ‘playing Possum’, an exercise of desisting and renitence: to firmly say ‘no’. To say no to a world that proposes just one way of being and living free, that imposes as the only unavoidable possible destiny.

  13. Foliar Nutritional Quality Explains Patchy Browsing Damage Caused by an Invasive Mammal.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hannah R Windley

    Full Text Available Introduced herbivores frequently inflict significant, yet patchy damage on native ecosystems through selective browsing. However, there are few instances where the underlying cause of this patchy damage has been revealed. We aimed to determine if the nutritional quality of foliage could predict the browsing preferences of an invasive mammalian herbivore, the common brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula, in a temperate forest in New Zealand. We quantified the spatial and temporal variation in four key aspects of the foliar chemistry (total nitrogen, available nitrogen, in vitro dry matter digestibility and tannin effect of 275 trees representing five native tree species. Simultaneously, we assessed the severity of browsing damage caused by possums on those trees in order to relate selective browsing to foliar nutritional quality. We found significant spatial and temporal variation in nutritional quality among individuals of each tree species examined, as well as among tree species. There was a positive relationship between the available nitrogen concentration of foliage (a measure of in vitro digestible protein and the severity of damage caused by browsing by possums. This study highlights the importance of nutritional quality, specifically, the foliar available nitrogen concentration of individual trees, in predicting the impact of an invasive mammal. Revealing the underlying cause of patchy browsing by an invasive mammal provides new insights for conservation of native forests and targeted control of invasive herbivores in forest ecosystems.

  14. Aerial Prefeeding Followed by Ground Based Toxic Baiting for More Efficient and Acceptable Poisoning of Invasive Small Mammalian Pests.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Morgan

    Full Text Available Introduced brushtail possums (Trichosurus vulpecula and rat species (Rattus spp. are major vertebrate pests in New Zealand, with impacts on conservation and agriculture being managed largely through poisoning operations. Aerial distribution of baits containing sodium fluoroacetate (1080 has been refined to maximise cost effectiveness and minimise environmental impact, but this method is strongly opposed by some as it is perceived as being indiscriminate. Although ground based control enables precise placement of baits, operations are often more than twice as costly as aerial control, mainly due to the high labour costs. We investigated a new approach to ground based control that combined aerial distribution of non-toxic 'prefeed' baits followed by sparse distribution of toxic baits at regular intervals along the GPS tracked prefeeding flight paths. This approach was tested in two field trials in which both 1080 baits and cholecalciferol baits were used in separate areas. Effectiveness of the approach, assessed primarily using 'chewcards', was compared with that of scheduled aerial 1080 operations that were conducted in outlying areas of both trials. Contractors carrying out ground based control were able to follow the GPS tracks of aerial prefeeding flight lines very accurately, and with 1080 baits achieved very high levels of kill of possums and rats similar to those achieved by aerial 1080 baiting. Cholecalciferol was less effective in the first trial, but by doubling the amount of cholecalciferol bait used in the second trial, few possums or rats survived. By measuring the time taken to complete ground baiting from GPS tracks, we predicted that the method (using 1080 baits would be similarly cost effective to aerial 1080 operations for controlling possums and rats, and considerably less expensive than typical current costs of ground based control. The main limitations to the use of the method will be access to, and size of, the operational

  15. Aerial Prefeeding Followed by Ground Based Toxic Baiting for More Efficient and Acceptable Poisoning of Invasive Small Mammalian Pests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morgan, David; Warburton, Bruce; Nugent, Graham

    2015-01-01

    Introduced brushtail possums (Trichosurus vulpecula) and rat species (Rattus spp.) are major vertebrate pests in New Zealand, with impacts on conservation and agriculture being managed largely through poisoning operations. Aerial distribution of baits containing sodium fluoroacetate (1080) has been refined to maximise cost effectiveness and minimise environmental impact, but this method is strongly opposed by some as it is perceived as being indiscriminate. Although ground based control enables precise placement of baits, operations are often more than twice as costly as aerial control, mainly due to the high labour costs. We investigated a new approach to ground based control that combined aerial distribution of non-toxic 'prefeed' baits followed by sparse distribution of toxic baits at regular intervals along the GPS tracked prefeeding flight paths. This approach was tested in two field trials in which both 1080 baits and cholecalciferol baits were used in separate areas. Effectiveness of the approach, assessed primarily using 'chewcards', was compared with that of scheduled aerial 1080 operations that were conducted in outlying areas of both trials. Contractors carrying out ground based control were able to follow the GPS tracks of aerial prefeeding flight lines very accurately, and with 1080 baits achieved very high levels of kill of possums and rats similar to those achieved by aerial 1080 baiting. Cholecalciferol was less effective in the first trial, but by doubling the amount of cholecalciferol bait used in the second trial, few possums or rats survived. By measuring the time taken to complete ground baiting from GPS tracks, we predicted that the method (using 1080 baits) would be similarly cost effective to aerial 1080 operations for controlling possums and rats, and considerably less expensive than typical current costs of ground based control. The main limitations to the use of the method will be access to, and size of, the operational site, along with

  16. Development of integrated surveillance systems for the management of tuberculosis in New Zealand wildlife

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, DP; Ramsey, DSL; de Lisle, GW; Bosson, M; Cross, ML; Nugent, G

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Disease surveillance for the management of bovine tuberculosis (TB) in New Zealand has focussed, to a large extent, on the development of tools specific for monitoring Mycobacterium bovis infection in wildlife. Diagnostic techniques have been modified progressively over 30 years of surveillance of TB in wildlife, from initial characterisation of gross TB lesions in a variety of wildlife, through development of sensitive culture techniques to identify viable mycobacteria, to molecular identification of individual M. bovis strains. Of key importance in disease surveillance has been the elucidation of the roles that different wildlife species play in the transmission of infection, specifically defining brushtail possums (Trichosurus vulpecula) as true maintenance hosts compared to those that are predominantly spillover hosts, but which may serve as useful sentinel species to indicate TB persistence. Epidemiological modelling has played a major role in TB surveillance, initially providing the theoretical support for large-scale possum population control and setting targets at which control effort should be deployed to ensure disease eradication. As TB prevalence in livestock and wildlife declined throughout the 2000s, more varied field tools were developed to gather surveillance data from the diminishing possum populations, and to provide information on changing TB prevalence. Accordingly, ever more precise (but disparate) surveillance information began to be integrated into multi-faceted decision-assist models to support TB management decisions, particularly to provide informed parameters at which control effort could be halted, culminating in the Proof of Freedom modelling framework that now allows an area to be declared TB-free within chosen confidence limits. As New Zealand moves from large-scale TB control to regional eradication of disease in the coming years, further integrative models will need to be developed to support management decisions, based on

  17. Le POSSUM: un bon score pour prédire la mortalité du sujet âgé opéré en urgence?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mzoughi, Zeineb; Bayar, Rached; Djebbi, Achref; Talbi, Ghofrane; Romdhane, Hayfa; Aloui, Wafa; Lassaad, Gharbi; Khalfallah, Mohamed Taher

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Le POSSUM (Physiologic and Operative Severity Score for the enUmeration of Mortality and morbidity) est un score prédictif de mortalité qui est largement utilisé en chirurgie aortique élective et abdominale. Le but de notre étude est une validation du POSSUM chez le sujet âgé (>70 ans) opéré pour une urgence digestive. Nous nous proposons d'étudier les meilleurs seuils du POSSUM, composé d'un score physiologique et d'un score opératoire, pour prédire la mortalité dans cette population. Méthodes Il s'agit d'une étude rétrospective analytique de type cas témoin à partir d'une série de 291 patients d'âge ≥ 70 ans opérés pour une urgence digestive. Ces patients étaient répartis en deux groupes comportant 50 patients chacun. Le groupe "DC": patients décédés en post opératoire immédiat et le Groupe témoin "SURV" choisis par tirage au sort. Nous avons analysé la fiabilité du POSSUM pour prédire la mortalité et la morbidité. Par la suite, nous avons établi des courbes de ROC pour définir les seuils qui donnent le meilleur couple sensibilité/spécificité. Résultats Le score physiologique, le score opératoire et les taux de morbidité et mortalité prédits par POSSUM et la mortalité prédit par P-POSSUM représentaient des facteurs prédictifs de mortalité (P <0,0001). Les valeurs seuils du score physiologique et du score opératoire qui donnent le meilleur couple sensibilité/spécificité, étaient respectivement de 23 et 15. Conclusion Prédire la mortalité permet de cibler la prise en charge et d'informer le patient et sa famille des risques encourus. PMID:27795763

  18. The effects of wildfire on mortality and resources for an arboreal marsupial: resilience to fire events but susceptibility to fire regime change.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sam C Banks

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Big environmental disturbances have big ecological effects, yet these are not always what we might expect. Understanding the proximate effects of major disturbances, such as severe wildfires, on individuals, populations and habitats will be essential for understanding how predicted future increases in the frequency of such disturbances will affect ecosystems. However, researchers rarely have access to data from immediately before and after such events. Here we report on the effects of a severe and extensive forest wildfire on mortality, reproductive output and availability of key shelter resources for an arboreal marsupial. We also investigated the behavioural response of individuals to changed shelter resource availability in the post-fire environment. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We fitted proximity-logging radiotransmitters to mountain brushtail possums (Trichosurus cunninghami before, during and after the 2009 wildfires in Victoria, Australia. Surprisingly, we detected no mortality associated with the fire, and despite a significant post-fire decrease in the proportion of females carrying pouch young in the burnt area, there was no short-term post-fire population decline. The major consequence of this fire for mountain brushtail possums was the loss of over 80% of hollow-bearing trees. The types of trees preferred as shelter sites (highly decayed dead standing trees were those most likely to collapse after fire. Individuals adapted to resource decline by being more flexible in resource selection after the fire, but not by increased resource sharing. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Despite short-term demographic resilience and behavioural adaptation following this fire, the major loss of decayed hollow trees suggests the increased frequency of stand-replacing wildfires predicted under climate change will pose major challenges for shelter resource availability for hollow-dependent fauna. Hollow-bearing trees are typically biological

  19. Development of the New Zealand strategy for local eradication of tuberculosis from wildlife and livestock.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Livingstone, P G; Hancox, N; Nugent, G; Mackereth, G; Hutchings, S A

    2015-06-01

    We describe the progressive development of New Zealand's national strategy for control of tuberculosis (TB) in its agricultural sector over the last four decades. The strategy is globally unique, reflecting the need for effective and co-ordinated management of TB in a wildlife maintenance host, the brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula), in addition to controlling infection in cattle and farmed deer herds. Since the early 1990s, the strategy has been developed by the Animal Health Board (AHB), formed to empower the farming industry to take the leadership role in funding of TB control, policy development and administration. The AHB became the first non-government organisation to develop and gain acceptance by the funders (farming industry and government) of a National Pest Management Strategy (NPMS) under the Biosecurity Act 1993. A key outcome of the NPMS for TB control was the development and inclusion of very challenging objectives that provided direction for management, research and possum control. This paper describes the process whereby the NPMS was revised twice, following achievement of each successive set of strategy objectives within budget. Success was based on firstly, reorganisation of the AHB and its operational systems to achieve increased efficiency; secondly, improved efficiency through contracting possum and disease control, and thirdly research delivering effective and practical applications, while also providing a scientific basis for setting directions for future control strategies. The last revision of the NPMS was implemented in 2011, and included objectives to eradicate Mycobacterium bovis-infected wildlife populations over 2.5 million hectares by 2026. This ambitious objective was adopted only after extensive forecast modelling enabled stakeholders to identify and select the most cost-effective long-term solution for the management of M. bovis-infected possum populations. The accomplishment of New Zealand's TB control programme, in meeting

  20. Performance Characteristics of Small Global-Positioning-System Tracking Collars

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. Dennis

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Recent technological advances have made possible the development of animal-tracking devices based on the global positioning system (GPS that are much smaller than what were available previously. However, potential limitations in size-dependent technologies and differences in patterns of behavior between small and large animals could mean that miniaturized GPS tracking devices may not function as well as their larger counterparts. Here, we evaluate the performance characteristics of 105-g GPS collars suitable for prolonged use on animals weighing as little as 2.5 kg. We tested 9 collars in stationary trials at a single reference site and in field deployments on common brushtail possums ( Trichosurus vulpecula/ , a semi-arboreal, nocturnal marsupial. We found in both trials that individual collars differed in several measures of positional accuracy and precision, yet overall the small collars compared favorably with published results of larger devices in similar habitats. Differences in operational characteristics between the two trials were mainly in the number and spatial configuration of satellites used to calculate position fixes, resulting in an increase in median location error from 9.8 m in the stationary tests to an estimated 14.7 m in the field trials. Most probably, these effects were due to dissimilarities in microhabitat features and variation in the orientation of GPS antennae which occurred when the possums changed their body posture during movement. The collars evaluated in this study promise to be a valuable tool for the study of the ecology, behavior, and conservation of many small-to-medium sized animals.

  1. Value of Modiifed Possum Scoring System on Predicting Operation Risk in Elderly NSCLC Patients%改良POSSUM评分在预测老年非小细胞肺癌手术风险中的应用价值

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    王蓉; 高德伟; 龚卫琴; 梁致如

    2014-01-01

    背景与目的对于评价老年患者能否耐受肺癌手术,目前尚无明确标准。本研究旨在探讨改良POS-SUM(Physiological and Operative Severity Score for the Umeration of Mortality and Morbidity)评分在预测老年非小细胞肺癌(non-small cell lung cancer, NSCLC)患者术后并发症发生率和病死率中的应用价值,为手术治疗的决策提供重要依据。方法2007年12月-2013年12月在解放军总医院接受手术治疗的老年NSCLC患者138例,其中男性88例,女性50例,收集临床资料,各因素对术后实际并发症发生率和病死率的影响,采用二值多元Logistic回归分析。在有、无并发症两组中,采用成组t检验对标准及改良POSSUM评分值进行比较。绘制标准POSSUM和改良POSSUM的受试者工作特征曲线(receiver operating characteristic curve, ROC),计算曲线下面积(area under the curve, AUC),两组间AUC比较采用t检验。计算改良POSSUM评分预测值和实际并发症发生率和病死率的符合度。结果共有59例患者出现77例次术后并发症,手术死亡2例。Logistic回归分析,标准POSSUM的18项指标中17项及肺功能、肿瘤分期对术后并发症的发生有统计学意义(P<0.05),年龄对术后死亡有统计学意义(P<0.05)。在标准POSSUM评分中,并发症组与无并发症组的评分比较,差异有统计学意义(P<0.01)。在改良POSSUM评分中,并发症组与无并发症组的评分比较,差异有统计学意义(P<0.01)。改良POSSUM较标准POSSUM对术后并发症发生有更好的预测价值,两组AUC比较,差异有统计学意义(P<0.01)。但改良POSSUM对手术死亡的预测值过高。结论改良POSSUM评分对老年NSCLC术后并发症发生有较好的预测价值,可为决策手术治疗提供依据。%Background and objective For the assessment of elderly patients can tolerate lung cancer operation, there is no clear standard

  2. An Endangered Arboreal Specialist, the Western Ringtail Possum (Pseudocheirus occidentalis, Shows a Greater Genetic Divergence across a Narrow Artificial Waterway than a Major Road.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kaori Yokochi

    Full Text Available The fragmentation of habitats by roads and other artificial linear structures can have a profound effect on the movement of arboreal species due to their strong fidelity to canopies. Here, we used 12 microsatellite DNA loci to investigate the fine-scale spatial genetic structure and the effects of a major road and a narrow artificial waterway on a population of the endangered western ringtail possum (Pseudocheirus occidentalis in Busselton, Western Australia. Using spatial autocorrelation analysis, we found positive genetic structure in continuous habitat over distances up to 600 m. These patterns are consistent with the sedentary nature of P. occidentalis and highlight their vulnerability to the effects of habitat fragmentation. Pairwise relatedness values and Bayesian cluster analysis also revealed significant genetic divergences across an artificial waterway, suggesting that it was a barrier to gene flow. By contrast, no genetic divergences were detected across the major road. While studies often focus on roads when assessing the effects of artificial linear structures on wildlife, this study provides an example of an often overlooked artificial linear structure other than a road that has a significant impact on wildlife dispersal leading to genetic subdivision.

  3. Interspecific and geographic variation in the diets of sympatric carnivores: dingoes/wild dogs and red foxes in south-eastern Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Naomi E; Forsyth, David M; Triggs, Barbara; Pascoe, Charlie; Benshemesh, Joe; Robley, Alan; Lawrence, Jenny; Ritchie, Euan G; Nimmo, Dale G; Lumsden, Lindy F

    2015-01-01

    Dingoes/wild dogs (Canis dingo/familiaris) and red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) are widespread carnivores in southern Australia and are controlled to reduce predation on domestic livestock and native fauna. We used the occurrence of food items in 5875 dingo/wild dog scats and 11,569 fox scats to evaluate interspecific and geographic differences in the diets of these species within nine regions of Victoria, south-eastern Australia. The nine regions encompass a wide variety of ecosystems. Diet overlap between dingoes/wild dogs and foxes varied among regions, from low to near complete overlap. The diet of foxes was broader than dingoes/wild dogs in all but three regions, with the former usually containing more insects, reptiles and plant material. By contrast, dingoes/wild dogs more regularly consumed larger mammals, supporting the hypothesis that niche partitioning occurs on the basis of mammalian prey size. The key mammalian food items for dingoes/wild dogs across all regions were black wallaby (Wallabia bicolor), brushtail possum species (Trichosurus spp.), common wombat (Vombatus ursinus), sambar deer (Rusa unicolor), cattle (Bos taurus) and European rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus). The key mammalian food items for foxes across all regions were European rabbit, sheep (Ovis aries) and house mouse (Mus musculus). Foxes consumed 6.1 times the number of individuals of threatened Critical Weight Range native mammal species than did dingoes/wild dogs. The occurrence of intraguild predation was asymmetrical; dingoes/wild dogs consumed greater biomass of the smaller fox. The substantial geographic variation in diet indicates that dingoes/wild dogs and foxes alter their diet in accordance with changing food availability. We provide checklists of taxa recorded in the diets of dingoes/wild dogs and foxes as a resource for managers and researchers wishing to understand the potential impacts of policy and management decisions on dingoes/wild dogs, foxes and the food resources they

  4. Vascular and avascular retinae in mammals. A funduscopic and fluorescein angiographic study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buttery, R G; Haight, J R; Bell, K

    1990-01-01

    Intraretinal blood vessels are present in some and absent in other vertebrate species, including the mammals. Among the marsupials, both vascular and avascular retinae are seen. We determined the funduscopic appearance of the eye, investigated the functional aspects of ocular blood flow in both types of retina in marsupials and compared our results with known patterns in placental mammals. The Australian polyprotodont marsupials, the Tasmanian devil, Sarcophilus harrisii, and the quoll, Dasyurus viverrinus, together with an American polyprotodont, the Virginia opossum, Didelphis virginiana, demonstrate variable degrees of tapetal differentiation, pigmentation and a very close parallel course of their intraretinal arteries and veins over considerable distances. Using the technique of fluorescein angiography, we found that retinal blood flow in the 3 vascular Australian species commenced with arterial filling. Early venous was seen next, followed by the capillary blush. This unusual sequence of vascular flow differs from that of the arterial-capillary-venous filling seen in placental mammals. This difference is most likely a consequence of the known looped, end artery organisation found within marsupial nervous systems, of which the retinae are a part. The 2 diprotodont marsupials examined, the brushtail possum, Trichosurus vulpecula, and the sugar glider, Petaurus breviceps, possess avascular retinae. Only a small residual tuft of fluorescein-impermeable vessels projects from the optic disc into the vitreous. Interestingly, the structural complexity of the central visual system in diprotodonts all of whom possess avascular retinae) is commonly accepted as being greater than that of the stem polyprotodont line (which possess vascular retinae). If retinal function matches this internal complexity, then retinal avascularity may, as in birds, be associated with superior vision. However, as the retinae of these mammals clearly lack any nutritive mechanisms directly

  5. Interspecific and geographic variation in the diets of sympatric carnivores: dingoes/wild dogs and red foxes in south-eastern Australia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Naomi E Davis

    Full Text Available Dingoes/wild dogs (Canis dingo/familiaris and red foxes (Vulpes vulpes are widespread carnivores in southern Australia and are controlled to reduce predation on domestic livestock and native fauna. We used the occurrence of food items in 5875 dingo/wild dog scats and 11,569 fox scats to evaluate interspecific and geographic differences in the diets of these species within nine regions of Victoria, south-eastern Australia. The nine regions encompass a wide variety of ecosystems. Diet overlap between dingoes/wild dogs and foxes varied among regions, from low to near complete overlap. The diet of foxes was broader than dingoes/wild dogs in all but three regions, with the former usually containing more insects, reptiles and plant material. By contrast, dingoes/wild dogs more regularly consumed larger mammals, supporting the hypothesis that niche partitioning occurs on the basis of mammalian prey size. The key mammalian food items for dingoes/wild dogs across all regions were black wallaby (Wallabia bicolor, brushtail possum species (Trichosurus spp., common wombat (Vombatus ursinus, sambar deer (Rusa unicolor, cattle (Bos taurus and European rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus. The key mammalian food items for foxes across all regions were European rabbit, sheep (Ovis aries and house mouse (Mus musculus. Foxes consumed 6.1 times the number of individuals of threatened Critical Weight Range native mammal species than did dingoes/wild dogs. The occurrence of intraguild predation was asymmetrical; dingoes/wild dogs consumed greater biomass of the smaller fox. The substantial geographic variation in diet indicates that dingoes/wild dogs and foxes alter their diet in accordance with changing food availability. We provide checklists of taxa recorded in the diets of dingoes/wild dogs and foxes as a resource for managers and researchers wishing to understand the potential impacts of policy and management decisions on dingoes/wild dogs, foxes and the food

  6. Effects of temporal resolution on an inferential model of animal movement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Postlethwaite, Claire M; Dennis, Todd E

    2013-01-01

    Recently, there has been much interest in describing the behaviour of animals by fitting various movement models to tracking data. Despite this interest, little is known about how the temporal 'grain' of movement trajectories affects the outputs of such models, and how behaviours classified at one timescale may differ from those classified at other scales. Here, we present a study in which random-walk state-space models were fit both to nightly geospatial lifelines of common brushtail possums (Trichosurus vulpecula) and synthetic trajectories parameterised from empirical observations. Observed trajectories recorded by GPS collars at 5-min intervals were sub-sampled at periods varying between 10 and 60 min, to approximate the effect of collecting data at lower sampling frequencies. Markov-Chain Monte-Carlo fitting techniques, using information about movement rates and turning angles between sequential fixes, were employed using a Bayesian framework to assign distinct behavioural states to individual location estimates. We found that in trajectories with higher temporal granularities behaviours could be clearly differentiated into 'slow-area-restricted' and 'fast-transiting' states, but for trajectories with longer inter-fix intervals this distinction was markedly less obvious. Specifically, turning-angle distributions varied from being highly peaked around either 0° or 180° at fine temporal scales, to being uniform across all angles at low sampling intervals. Our results highlight the difficulty of comparing model results amongst tracking-data sets that vary substantially in temporal grain, and demonstrate the importance of matching the observed temporal resolution of tracking devices to the timescales of behaviours of interest, otherwise inter-individual comparisons of inferred behaviours may be invalid, or important biological information may be obscured.

  7. Effects of temporal resolution on an inferential model of animal movement.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claire M Postlethwaite

    Full Text Available Recently, there has been much interest in describing the behaviour of animals by fitting various movement models to tracking data. Despite this interest, little is known about how the temporal 'grain' of movement trajectories affects the outputs of such models, and how behaviours classified at one timescale may differ from those classified at other scales. Here, we present a study in which random-walk state-space models were fit both to nightly geospatial lifelines of common brushtail possums (Trichosurus vulpecula and synthetic trajectories parameterised from empirical observations. Observed trajectories recorded by GPS collars at 5-min intervals were sub-sampled at periods varying between 10 and 60 min, to approximate the effect of collecting data at lower sampling frequencies. Markov-Chain Monte-Carlo fitting techniques, using information about movement rates and turning angles between sequential fixes, were employed using a Bayesian framework to assign distinct behavioural states to individual location estimates. We found that in trajectories with higher temporal granularities behaviours could be clearly differentiated into 'slow-area-restricted' and 'fast-transiting' states, but for trajectories with longer inter-fix intervals this distinction was markedly less obvious. Specifically, turning-angle distributions varied from being highly peaked around either 0° or 180° at fine temporal scales, to being uniform across all angles at low sampling intervals. Our results highlight the difficulty of comparing model results amongst tracking-data sets that vary substantially in temporal grain, and demonstrate the importance of matching the observed temporal resolution of tracking devices to the timescales of behaviours of interest, otherwise inter-individual comparisons of inferred behaviours may be invalid, or important biological information may be obscured.

  8. Metabolic effects of cortisol, ACTH, adrenalin and insulin in the marsupial sugar glider, Petaurus breviceps.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bradley, A J; Stoddart, D M

    1990-11-01

    The effects of cortisol, ACTH, adrenalin and insulin on indices of carbohydrate, fat and protein metabolism were investigated in the conscious marsupial sugar glider Petaurus breviceps. Short-term i.v. infusion of cortisol at dose rates of 0.02, 0.2 and 1.0 mg/kg per h caused the plasma glucose concentration to rise sharply from the normal range of 3.3-4.4 to 8.1-8.7 mmol/l at the end of the infusion period without significant alteration in plasma free fatty acid (FFA), amino acid or urea concentrations. Infusions of ACTH at dose rates of 0.02, 0.06 and 0.45 IU/kg per h caused a similar rise in plasma glucose concentration; however, this was now accompanied by an elevation in plasma FFA concentration, but again without significant changes in either plasma amino acid or urea concentrations. Infusion of adrenalin at 10 micrograms/kg per h caused an increase in the plasma concentrations of both glucose and FFA. Intravenous injections of 0.15 IU insulin/kg caused a rapid and marked decrease in the plasma glucose concentration within 30 min and an increase in the plasma free cortisol concentration. Associated with this change was a marked rise in the plasma concentration of both FFA and free cortisol. The rise in free cortisol was, however, significantly reduced by infusion of glucose. Pretreatment with five daily i.m. injections of 1 mg cortisol acetate/kg, which produced an increase in plasma free cortisol concentration to near the maximum of the physiological range, caused a marked reduction in insulin sensitivity. Cortisol pretreatment caused an increase in the plasma FFA and amino acid concentrations. Petaurus breviceps is highly sensitive to the metabolic effects of glucocorticoids and is similar in this respect to the brush-tailed possum Trichosurus vulpecula. The interactive effects between insulin and glucocorticoids on carbohydrate, fat and protein metabolism in Petaurus breviceps are similar to those shown by Trichosurus vulpecula and some eutherian mammals

  9. Valuing conservation benefits of disease control in wildlife: A choice experiment approach to bovine tuberculosis management in New Zealand's native forests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tait, Peter; Saunders, Caroline; Nugent, Graham; Rutherford, Paul

    2017-03-15

    We assess the non-monetary environmental benefits that accrue incidentally in New Zealand (NZ) from pest management conducted primarily to control an animal disease, bovine tuberculosis (TB). TB is an infectious disease that is one of the world's most serious animal health problems and, in many parts of the developing world, still a major mortality risk for humans. The incidence of TB in New Zealand (NZ) farmed livestock has been reduced progressively over the last 20 years, largely due to extensive and sustained population control of the main wildlife reservoir of disease, the introduced brushtail possum. Possums are also major pests that threaten indigenous forest biodiversity, and so extensive possum control for TB mitigation also incidental benefits conservation, but the extent and public value of this benefit has yet to be quantified. We conducted a choice experiment survey of the NZ public in an effort to value the native forest biodiversity benefits of TB-related possum control. We find strong public support for conservation outcomes consequent to TB-possum control in public native forests. The public place substantial value on the most observable biodiversity benefits of TB possum control, such as improved forest canopies and presence of native birds. The benefits, costs and values of TB-possum control are discussed in relation to the future directives of NZ's TB control programme, which is headed toward first regional and then national level disease eradication.

  10. THE SUGAR GLIDER (PETAURUS BREVICEPS): A LABORATORY HOST FOR THE NEMATODE PARASTRONGYLOIDES TRICHOSURI

    OpenAIRE

    Nolan, Thomas J.; Zhu, Xiaodong; Ketschek, Andrea; Cole, Joan; Grant, Warwick; Lok, James B; Schad, Gerhard A.

    2007-01-01

    Parastrongyloides trichosuri is a nematode parasite of the Australian brush-tailed possums that can be propagated through many generations in vitro. This makes P. trichosuri uniquely suited for genetic investigations, including those involving transgenesis. However, an obstacle to its use as an experimental model has been the fact that its host is limited to Australia and New Zealand and that it cannot be exported because of its status as a protected species or agricultural pest, respectively...

  11. Linking bovine tuberculosis on cattle farms to white-tailed deer and environmental variables using Bayesian hierarchical analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walter, William D.; Smith, Rick; Vanderklok, Mike; VerCauterren, Kurt C.

    2014-01-01

    Bovine tuberculosis is a bacterial disease caused by Mycobacterium bovis in livestock and wildlife with hosts that include Eurasian badgers (Meles meles), brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula), and white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus). Risk-assessment efforts in Michigan have been initiated on farms to minimize interactions of cattle with wildlife hosts but research onM. bovis on cattle farms has not investigated the spatial context of disease epidemiology. To incorporate spatially explicit data, initial likelihood of infection probabilities for cattle farms tested for M. bovis, prevalence of M. bovis in white-tailed deer, deer density, and environmental variables for each farm were modeled in a Bayesian hierarchical framework. We used geo-referenced locations of 762 cattle farms that have been tested for M. bovis, white-tailed deer prevalence, and several environmental variables that may lead to long-term survival and viability of M. bovis on farms and surrounding habitats (i.e., soil type, habitat type). Bayesian hierarchical analyses identified deer prevalence and proportion of sandy soil within our sampling grid as the most supported model. Analysis of cattle farms tested for M. bovisidentified that for every 1% increase in sandy soil resulted in an increase in odds of infection by 4%. Our analysis revealed that the influence of prevalence of M. bovis in white-tailed deer was still a concern even after considerable efforts to prevent cattle interactions with white-tailed deer through on-farm mitigation and reduction in the deer population. Cattle farms test positive for M. bovis annually in our study area suggesting that the potential for an environmental source either on farms or in the surrounding landscape may contributing to new or re-infections with M. bovis. Our research provides an initial assessment of potential environmental factors that could be incorporated into additional modeling efforts as more knowledge of deer herd

  12. Can individual and social patterns of resource use buffer animal populations against resource decline?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banks, Sam C; Lindenmayer, David B; Wood, Jeff T; McBurney, Lachlan; Blair, David; Blyton, Michaela D J

    2013-01-01

    Species in many ecosystems are facing declines of key resources. If we are to understand and predict the effects of resource loss on natural populations, we need to understand whether and how the way animals use resources changes under resource decline. We investigated how the abundance of arboreal marsupials varies in response to a critical resource, hollow-bearing trees. Principally, we asked what mechanisms mediate the relationship between resources and abundance? Do animals use a greater or smaller proportion of the remaining resource, and is there a change in cooperative resource use (den sharing), as the availability of hollow trees declines? Analyses of data from 160 sites surveyed from 1997 to 2007 showed that hollow tree availability was positively associated with abundance of the mountain brushtail possum, the agile antechinus and the greater glider. The abundance of Leadbeater's possum was primarily influenced by forest age. Notably, the relationship between abundance and hollow tree availability was significantly less than 1:1 for all species. This was due primarily to a significant increase by all species in the proportional use of hollow-bearing trees where the abundance of this resource was low. The resource-sharing response was weaker and inconsistent among species. Two species, the mountain brushtail possum and the agile antechinus, showed significant but contrasting relationships between the number of animals per occupied tree and hollow tree abundance. The discrepancies between the species can be explained partly by differences in several aspects of the species' biology, including body size, types of hollows used and social behaviour as it relates to hollow use. Our results show that individual and social aspects of resource use are not always static in response to resource availability and support the need to account for dynamic resource use patterns in predictive models of animal distribution and abundance.

  13. Testicular vasomotion in different mammals

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    OlaCollin; JimL.Zupp; BrianP.Setchell

    2000-01-01

    Vasomotion is a rhythmical variation in arterial blood flow present in many different organs among them the rat testis. Vasomotion is suggested to play an important role for the transvascular fluid exchange and the exchange of nutrients over the capillary wall as well as the formation of interstitial fluid. The present study was undertaken to elucidate whether vasomotion is present in the testes of different species independent of their anatomical vascular topography.Blood flow in the testes of mouse, brush-tailed possum, tammar wallaby, ram and human was investigated by using a laser Doppler flowmeter. Vasomotion was found in all the species investigated. (Asian J Andro12000 Dec;2:297-300)

  14. Molecular characterization of Eimeria species in macropods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Rongchang; Fenwick, Stan; Potter, Abbey; Elliot, Aileen; Power, Michelle; Beveridge, Ian; Ryan, Una

    2012-10-01

    A total of 597 faecal samples were collected from western grey kangaroos (Macropus fuliginosus), Euros (M. robustus), red kangaroos (M. rufus) in Western Australia and Eastern Grey Kangaroos (M. giganteus) from Victoria and screened for the presence of Eimeria by PCR at the 18S ribosomal RNA (rRNA) locus. The overall prevalence was 24.3% (145/597). At the 18S rRNA locus, sequences were obtained for 25 of the 145 positives. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that all the macropod-derived Eimeria species grouped in a separate marsupial clade that included Eimeria trichosuri from brushtail possums. At least 6 different clades were identified within the marsupial isolates and many of the genotypes identified are likely to be valid species, however morphological and biological data need to be collected to match sequences to previously characterized Eimeria species or identify if they are new species.

  15. Phylogenetic analysis of Porphyromonas species isolated from the oral cavity of Australian marsupials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mikkelsen, Deirdre; Milinovich, Gabriel J; Burrell, Paul C; Huynh, Sharnan C; Pettett, Lyndall M; Blackall, Linda L; Trott, Darren J; Bird, Philip S

    2008-09-01

    Porphyromonas species are frequently isolated from the oral cavity and are associated with periodontal disease in both animals and humans. Black, pigmented Porphyromonas spp. isolated from the gingival margins of selected wild and captive Australian marsupials with varying degrees of periodontal disease (brushtail possums, koalas and macropods) were compared phylogenetically to Porphyromonas strains from non-marsupials (bear, wolf, coyote, cats and dogs) and Porphyromonas gingivalis strains from humans using 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis. The results of the phylogenetic analysis identified three distinct groups of strains. A monophyletic P. gingivalis group (Group 1) contained only strains isolated from humans and a Porphyromonas gulae group (Group 2) was divided into three distinct subclades, each containing both marsupial and non-marsupial strains. Group 3, which contained only marsupial strains, including all six strains isolated from captive koalas, was genetically distinct from P. gulae and may constitute a new Porphyromonas species.

  16. Further characterisation of two Eimeria species (Eimeria quokka and Eimeria setonicis) in quokkas (Setonix brachyurus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Austen, J M; Friend, J A; Yang, R; Ryan, U M

    2014-03-01

    The identification and characterisation of novel Eimeria species has largely been based on sporulated oocyst and sporocyst morphology, the host species and the geographical range. Variation in the size and shape of Eimeria oocysts across their host range however, make the identification and characterisation of novel species using traditional methodologies alone problematic. The use of molecular markers and phylogenetic analysis has greatly advanced our ability to characterise Eimeria species and has recently been applied to understand evolutionary relationships among Eimeria species from Australian marsupials. In the present study, Eimeria species isolated from quokkas (Setonix brachyurus) captured from Two Peoples Bay, Bald Island and Rottnest Island, Western Australia, were morphologically identified as Eimeria quokka and Eimeria setonicis. Both Eimeria species were identified as being polymorphic in nature with regards to sporulated oocyst and sporocyst morphometrics. Phylogenetic analysis using 18S rRNA and COI (cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1) genes, grouped E. quokka and E. setonicis within the Eimeria marsupial clade together with Eimeria trichosuri from brushtail possums, Eimeria macropodis from tammar wallabies (Macropus eugenii) and several unidentified macropod Eimeria species from western grey kangaroos (Macropus fuliginosus). This study is the first to characterise E. quokka and E. setonicis by molecular analysis, enabling more extensive resolution of evolutionary relationships among marsupial-derived Eimeria species.

  17. Identification multiplex assay of 19 terrestrial mammal species present in New Zealand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramón-Laca, Ana; Linacre, Adrian M T; Gleeson, Dianne M; Tobe, Shanan S

    2013-12-01

    An identification assay has been developed that allows accurate detection of 19 of the most common terrestrial mammals present in New Zealand (cow, red deer, goat, dog, horse, hedgehog, cat, tammar wallaby, mouse, weasel, ferret, stoat, sheep, rabbit, Pacific rat, Norway rat, ship rat, pig, and brushtail possum). This technique utilizes species-specific primers that, combined in a multiplex PCR, target small fragments of the mitochondrial cytochrome b gene. Each species, except hedgehog, produces two distinctive species-specific fragments, making the assay self-confirmatory and enabling the identification of multiple species simultaneously in DNA mixtures. The multiplex assay detects as little as 100 copies of mitochondrial DNA, which makes it a very reliable tool for degraded and trace samples. Reliability, accuracy, reproducibility, and sensitivity tests to validate the technique were performed. The technique featured here enabled a prompt response in a predation specific event, but can also be useful for wildlife management and conservation, pest incursions detection, forensic, and industrial purposes in a very simple and cost-effective manner.

  18. The sugar glider (Petaurus breviceps): a laboratory host for the nematode Parastrongyloides trichosuri.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nolan, Thomas J; Zhu, Xiaodong; Ketschek, Andrea; Cole, Joan; Grant, Warwick; Lok, James B; Schad, Gerhard A

    2007-10-01

    Parastrongyloides trichosuri is a nematode parasite of the Australian brush-tailed possums that can be propagated through many generations in vitro. This makes P. trichosuri uniquely suited for genetic investigations, including those involving transgenesis. However, an obstacle to its use as an experimental model has been the fact that its host is limited to Australia and New Zealand and that it cannot be exported because of its status as a protected species or agricultural pest, respectively. In previous studies, conventional laboratory animals such as rats, mice, rabbits, ferrets, and chickens have failed to support infections. In the present study, gerbils and short-tailed opossums proved similarly refractory to infection. In contrast, the sugar glider (Petaurus breviceps, family Petauridae) proved to be a good host for P. trichosuri. Patent infections resulted using as few as 6 infective larvae (L3i) and as many as 2,000 L3i. Large numbers of L3i (1,000-2,000) produced patent infections of much shorter duration than those seen when 100 L3i were initially given to the sugar glider. In one case, an infection initiated with 100 L3i was patent for over 1 yr. Parastrongyloides trichosuri is easily cryopreserved using a method developed for Strongyloides stercoralis. Thus, we have identified an experimental host for P. trichosuri that will make it possible to conduct research on this parasite in laboratories outside the endemic sites.

  19. Neurogenesis in the brain auditory pathway of a marsupial, the northern native cat (Dasyurus hallucatus)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Aitkin, L.; Nelson, J.; Farrington, M.; Swann, S. (Department of Physiology, Monash University, Melbourne (Australia))

    1991-07-08

    Neurogenesis in the auditory pathway of the marsupial Dasyurus hallucatus was studied. Intraperitoneal injections of tritiated thymidine (20-40 microCi) were made into pouch-young varying from 1 to 56 days pouch-life. Animals were killed as adults and brain sections were prepared for autoradiography and counterstained with a Nissl stain. Neurons in the ventral cochlear nucleus were generated prior to 3 days pouch-life, in the superior olive at 5-7 days, and in the dorsal cochlear nucleus over a prolonged period. Inferior collicular neurogenesis lagged behind that in the medial geniculate, the latter taking place between days 3 and 9 and the former between days 7 and 22. Neurogenesis began in the auditory cortex on day 9 and was completed by about day 42. Thus neurogenesis was complete in the medullary auditory nuclei before that in the midbrain commenced, and in the medial geniculate before that in the auditory cortex commenced. The time course of neurogenesis in the auditory pathway of the native cat was very similar to that in another marsupial, the brushtail possum. For both, neurogenesis occurred earlier than in eutherian mammals of a similar size but was more protracted.

  20. High temporal variability in commensal Escherichia coli strain communities of a herbivorous marsupial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blyton, Michaela D J; Banks, Sam C; Peakall, Rod; Gordon, David M

    2013-08-01

    Although Escherichia coli is an important model organism for bacterial research, few studies have explored the nature of temporal variation in E. coli strains within the intestinal tracts of host individuals. In this study the E. coli strains of 54 mountain brushtail possums were sampled on four occasions during a year. This allowed temporal changes to be quantified both at the host population level and within individuals. Escherichia coli strains were identified using a combination of rep-PCR profiles from two primers (CGG and ERIC) and phylogenetic group assigned by quadruplex PCR. The study revealed considerable changes in community structure within individuals among all time periods. In fact, temporal variation within individuals accounted for more of the variation in E. coli community structure than differences between animals. In contrast to the within-host dynamics, there were no significant differences among the time periods at the host population level. It was also found that there was no effect of host age or sex on strain community structure within host individuals. These findings highlight the importance of temporal variation in the ecology of E. coli, while the methods applied in this study may serve as a foundation for further work in this area.

  1. Isolation and characterization of marsupial IL5 genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawken, R J; Maccarone, P; Toder, R; Marshall Graves, J A; Maddox, J F

    1999-10-01

    The genomic nucleotide sequence and chromosomal position of the interleukin 5 (IL5) gene has been described for the model marsupial Macropus eugenii (tammar wallaby). A 272 base pair genomic IL5 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) product spanning exon 3, intron 3, and exon 4 was generated using stripe-faced dunnart (Sminthopsis macroura) DNA. This PCR product was used to isolate a genomic lambda clone containing the complete IL5 gene from a tammar wallaby EMBL3 lambda library. Sequencing revealed that the tammar wallaby IL5 gene consists of four exons separated by three introns. Comparison of the marsupial coding sequence with coding sequences from eutherian species revealed 61 to 69% identity at the nucleotide level and 48 to 63% identity at the amino acid (aa) level. A polymorphic complex compound microsatellite was identified within intron 2 of the tammar wallaby IL5 gene. This microsatellite was also found in other marsupials including the swamp wallaby, tree kangaroo, stripe-faced dunnart, South American opossum, brushtail possum, and koala. Fluorescence in situ hybridization using DNA from the IL5 clone on tammar wallaby chromosomes indicated that the IL5 gene is located on Chromosome 1.

  2. Species of Angiostrongylus (Nematoda: Metastrongyloidea in wildlife: A review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David M. Spratt

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Twenty-one species of Angiostrongylus plus Angiostrongylus sp. (Nematoda: Metastrongyloidea are known currently in wildlife. These occur naturally in rodents, tupaiids, mephitids, mustelids, procyonids, felids, and canids, and aberrantly in a range of avian, marsupial and eutherian hosts including humans. Adults inhabit the pulmonary arteries and right atrium, ventricle and vena cava, bronchioles of the lung or arteries of the caecum and mesentery. All species pass first-stage larvae in the faeces of the host and all utilise slugs and/or aquatic or terrestrial snails as intermediate hosts. Gastropods are infected by ingestion or penetration of first-stage larvae; definitive hosts by ingestion of gastropods or gastropod slime. Transmission of at least one species may involve ingestion of paratenic hosts. Five developmental pathways are identified in these life cycles. Thirteen species, including Angiostrongylus sp., are known primarily from the original descriptions suggesting limited geographic distributions. The remaining species are widespread either globally or regionally, and are continuing to spread. Small experimental doses of infective larvae (ca. 20 given to normal or aberrant hosts are tolerated, although generally eliciting a granulomatous histopathological response; large doses (100–500 larvae often result in clinical signs and/or death. Two species, A. cantonensis and A. costaricensis, are established zoonoses causing neurological and abdominal angiostrongliasis respectively. The zoonotic potential of A. mackerrasae, A. malaysiensis and A. siamensis particularly warrant investigation. Angiostrongylus cantonensis occurs in domestic animals, mammalian and avian wildlife and humans in the metropolitan areas of Brisbane and Sydney, Australia, where it has been suggested that tawny frogmouths and brushtail possums may serve as biosentinels. A major conservation issue is the devastating role A. cantonensis may play around zoos and fauna

  3. The role of multiple wildlife hosts in the persistence and spread of bovine tuberculosis in New Zealand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barron, MC; Tompkins, DM; Ramsey, DSL; Bosson, MAJ

    2015-01-01

    Abstract AIM: To explore how the inclusion of multi-host dynamics affects the predicted prevalence of bovine tuberculosis (TB) in possums and other host species following the current best practice for control of TB in large difficult and remote areas, to identify which host species are responsible for changes in predicted prevalence, and whether TB can persist in possum-free host communities. METHODS: Multi-host TB models were constructed, comprising three host species with density-dependent population growth, density-dependent disease transmission and susceptible and infected classes. Models were parameterised for two case studies of current concern in New Zealand, namely chronic TB persistence in a possum-deer-pig complex in extensive forest, and in a possum-pig-ferret complex in unforested semi-arid shrub and grasslands. Persistence of TB in the face of best practice possum control was evaluated from model simulations, and the contribution of different hosts to persistence of TB was assessed by removing each host species in turn from the simulations. A sensitivity test explored how different parameter values affected modelled persistence of TB. RESULTS: The forest multi-host model-predicted amplification of TB prevalence due to the presence of pigs. The presence of pigs and/or deer did not jeopardise the success of best practice possum control in eradicating TB from the system, as pigs and deer are effectively end-hosts for TB. Sensitivity analyses indicated these interpretations were robust to uncertainty in model parameter values. The grassland system model predicted that the multi-host species complex could potentially lead to failure of eradication of TB under possum-only control, due to TB persisting in ferret and pig populations in the absence of possum hosts through reciprocal scavenging, resulting in spillback transmission to possums once their populations had started to recover from control. CONCLUSIONS: With respect to management of TB, for modelled

  4. L'élevage d'athérures (Atherurus africanus, Gray 1842 au Gabon

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Houben, P.

    2000-01-01

    Full Text Available The Breeding of Brush-tailed Porcupines (Atherurus africanus, Gray 1842 in Gabon. The brush-tailed porcupine (Atherurus africanus is a much appreciated bush meat in Gabon. On the project "Development of Game Breeding", brush-tailed porcupines are bred in two types of enclosures : an out-door enclosure and an indoor enclosure. They are fed with a diversified diet based on tubers. To obtain a successful reproduction, one male and one female have to stay together for 60 days then the female has to be separated from the male till the birth. The brush-tailed porcupine has a satisfactory growth rate but some of the reproduction features seem to call into question the profitability of its breeding.

  5. Economics of an ecotourism operation in Belize

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kangas, Patrick; Shave, Mary; Shave, Paul

    1995-09-01

    The economic inputs and outputs for the Possum Point Biological Station in Belize during 1990 1992 are described to illustrate some aspects of an ecotourism operation. Eight hundred fifty-four people in 59 groups visited Possum Point during the study period to tour rain forests, estuaries, and coral reefs. The economic input to Possum Point from these groups increased from 74,552 in 1990 to 166,268 in 1992. Outputs were for license fees, capital improvements, goods and services, labor, fossil fuels, and development of a historic sugar mill site. An annual donation was also made to a scholarship fund for local Belizean students. The net cash balance of income and outputs changed from negative (-6678) in 1990 to positive (+4811) in 1992, suggesting development of the economic operation. Possum Point meets the economic criteria for ecotourism by feeding back some tourist monies for community and environmental support, particularly donations for the sugar mill site and the scholarship fund. Most of the outputs from Possum Point (about 80%) were retained in the local economy through employment and purchases, which have a positive influence on the local community. We conclude that ecotourism operations, such as Possum Point, offer important sustainable development opportunities for Belize.

  6. Modified physiological and operative score for the enumeration of mortality and morbidity risk assessment model in general surgery

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2007-01-01

    AIM: To establish a scoring system for predicting the incidence of postoperative complications and mortality in general surgery based on the physiological and operative severity score for the enumeration of mortality and morbidity (POSSUM), and to evaluate its efficacy.METHODS: Eighty-four patients with postoperative complications or death and 172 patients without postoperative complications, who underwent surgery in our department during the previous 2 years, were retrospectively analyzed by logistic regression. Fifteen indexes were investigated including age, cardiovascular function, respiratory function, blood test results,endocrine function, central nervous system function,hepatic function, renal function, nutritional status, extent of operative trauma, and course of anesthesia. Modified POSSUM (M-POSSUM) was developed using significant risk factors with its efficacy evaluated.RESULTS: The significant risk factors were found to be age, cardiovascular function, respiratory function,hepatic function, renal function, blood test results,endocrine function, nutritional status, duration of operation, intraoperative blood loss, and course of anesthesia. These factors were all included in the scoring system. There were significant differences in the scores between the patients with and without postoperative complications, between the patients died and survived with complications, and between the patients died and survived without complications. The receiver operating characteristic curves showed that the M-POSSUM could accurately predict postoperative complications and mortality.CONCLUSION: M-POSSUM correlates well with postoperative complications and mortality, and is more accurate than POSSUM.

  7. Dicty_cDB: Contig-U05475-1 [Dicty_cDB

    Lifescience Database Archive (English)

    Full Text Available . 46 1.3 1 ( DY594159 ) KIDNEYF042327N20 POSSUM_01-POSSUM-KIDNEY-2KB Tric... 46 1.3 1 ( DB871834 ) Lipochromis sp. 'matumbi hunter...' cDNA clone:hm764... 46 1.3 1 ( DB870676 ) Lipochromis sp. 'matumbi hunter...' cDNA clone:hm750... 46 1.3 1 ( DB864953 ) Lipochromis sp. 'matumbi hunter' cDNA clone:hm78..... 44 5.3 1 ( DN683050 ) CGX27-G02.x1d-t SHGC-CGX Gasterosteus aculeatus c... 44 5.3 1 ( DB874016 ) Lipochromis sp. 'matumbi hunter

  8. Dicty_cDB: Contig-U15891-1 [Dicty_cDB

    Lifescience Database Archive (English)

    Full Text Available OSSUM_01-POSSUM-LIVER-2KB Tricho... 54 1e-21 7 ( DB919968 ) Idiosepius paradoxus cDNA, clone:Ip_aB_036_M01, ...84 6e-19 4 ( EY099278 ) CAZI24167.fwd CAZI Artemisia annua normalized lea... 50 8e-19 4 ( DB920027 ) Idiosepius

  9. The Gang's All Here: Grammar Goes Global for Purdue, Unisa and Adelaide University

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duff, Andrea; Spangenberg, Brady; Carter, Susanna; Miller, Julia

    2010-01-01

    The University of South Australia and Purdue University (Indiana) launched the "Grammar Gang Blog" in June 2008, as a collaborative forum for talking about language. The blog reaches a far-flung community of learners from Australia to the United States, Brisbane to Bangalore and Ghana to Germany. The Grammar Gang--where Owls meet Possums--started…

  10. An attempt to identify the likely sources of Escherichia coli harboring toxin genes in rainwater tanks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmed, W; Sidhu, J P S; Toze, S

    2012-05-01

    In this study, 200 Escherichia coli isolates from 22 rainwater tank samples in Southeast Queensland, Australia were tested for the presence of 10 toxin genes (i.e., stx(1), stx(2), hlyA, ehxA, LT1, ST1, cdtB, east1, cnf1, and cvaC) associated with intestinal and extraintestinal pathotypes. Among the 22 rainwater tanks tested, 5 (28%), 7 (32%), 7 (32%), and 1 (5%) tanks contained E. coli harboring ST1, east1, cdtB, and cvaC genes, respectively. Of the 200 E. coli isolates from the 22 tanks, 43 (22%) strains from 13 (59%) tanks were harboring toxin gene. An attempt was made to establish a link between bird and possum fecal contamination and the presence of these potential clinically significant E. coli strains harboring toxin genes in rainwater tanks. Among the 214 E. coli isolates tested from birds, 30 (14%), 11 (5%) and 18 (8%) strains contained east1, cdtB, and cvaC toxin genes, respectively. Similarly, among the 214 possum E. coli isolates, 74 (35%) contained only the east1 toxin gene. All E. coli strains from rainwater tanks, bird and possum fecal samples harboring toxin genes were biochemically fingerprinted. Biochemical phenotypes (BPTs) of 14 (33%) E. coli strains from 7 rainwater tanks and 9 (21%) E. coli strains from 6 rainwater tanks were identical to a number of BPTs of E. coli strains isolated from bird and possum feces suggesting that these animals may be the sources of these E. coli in rainwater tanks. as a precautionary measure, it is recommended that rainwater should be treated prior to drinking. In addition, proper maintenance of roof and gutter hygiene and elimination of overhanging tree branches and other structures where possible to prevent the movement of possums are highly recommended.

  11. Value of Different Scoring Methods for Surgical Risk Assessment of Patients with Gastrointestinal Malignancies%不同评分方法对胃肠恶性肿瘤病人手术风险评估的价值

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    刘文明; 严想元

    2015-01-01

    目的:比较APACHE APACHE Ⅱ 评分与POSSUM评分对胃肠恶性肿瘤患者手术风险评估的价值.方法:100例胃肠恶性肿瘤患者,术前1d、术后1d分别用APACHE APACHE Ⅱ 评分系统与POSSUM评分系统对患者进行评估,统计患者术后实际并发症发生率及死亡率,计算两种不同评分方法O/E值.结果:术前1d、术后1d APACHE APACHE Ⅱ 评分与POSSUM评分比较差异有统计学意义(P<0.05),APACHE II评分与POSSUM评分之间呈正相关;APACHE APACHE Ⅱ 评分对并发症、死亡发生预测O/E值分别为1.11、0.43,POSSUM评分对并发症、死亡发生预测O/E值分别为0.94、0.72.结论:POSSUM评分相对APACHE APACHE Ⅱ 评分,在胃肠恶性肿瘤患者手术风险(并发症及死亡率)评估上更有优势.%Objective: To compare the value of APACHE Ⅱ APACHE and POSSUM score in the surgical risk assessment of patients with malignant gastrointestinal tumor.Methods: 100 cases of patients with gastrointestinal tract malignant tumor, 1 day before operation, postoperative 1D, respectively with APACHE APACHE Ⅱ score system and POSSUM scoring system for patients evaluated, statistics of patients with postoperative complications occurred and the mortality rate calculated two different scoring methods O/E values.Results:At 1 day before operation, postoperative 1D APACHE APACHE Ⅱ score and POSSUM scoring, the difference has statistical significance (P<0.05), there was a positive correlation between the APACHE II score and POSSUM scoring; APACHE IAPACHE Ⅱ score of complications and mortality prediction of O/E values were 1.11, 0.43, POSSUM scoring of complications and death prediction of O/E values of 0.94, 0.72, respectively.Conclusions:The POSSUM score relative to the APACHE Ⅱ APACHE score was more advantageous in the assessment of surgical risks (complications and mortality) in patients with gastrointestinal malignancies.

  12. Dicty_cDB: Contig-U06541-1 [Dicty_cDB

    Lifescience Database Archive (English)

    Full Text Available GH_MBb Gossypium hirsutum genomic ... 46 1.9 1 ( ES226393 ) MpSG_ag6_H04 Myzus persicae..., tobacco lineage, aph... 46 1.9 1 ( ES222169 ) MpGVN_ag2_O17 Myzus persicae, line G006, PLRV fre... 4...6 1.9 1 ( ES221451 ) MpGV_ag3_J16 Myzus persicae, line G006, PLRV infe... 46 1.9 1 ( EG617027 ) REPROTRACTF0...95449F22 POSSUM_01-POSSUM-C-REPROTRAC... 46 1.9 1 ( EE570712 ) A01_A01fv4m1_pDNRf_531608 Myzus persicae..., line F0... 46 1.9 1 ( EE263373 ) F02_F02gf1c4_pDNRf_501665 Myzus persicae, line G0..

  13. Short and medium-term outcomes for general surgery in nonagenarian patients in a district general hospital.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayes, A J; Davda, A; El-Hadi, M; Murphy, P; Papettas, T

    2016-07-01

    Introduction Surgeons are increasingly performing surgery on older patients. There are currently no tools specifically for risk prediction in this group. The aim of this study was to review general surgical operations carried out on patients aged over 90 years and their outcome, before comparing these with predictors of morbidity and mortality. Methods A retrospective review was carried out at our district general hospital of all general surgery patients aged over 90 years who underwent a general surgical operation over a period of 14 years. Information collected included demographics, details of procedures, P-POSSUM (Portsmouth Physiological and Operative Severity Score for the enUmeration of Mortality and morbidity), complications and outcomes. Results A total of 119 procedures were carried out, 72 involving entry into the peritoneal cavity. Overall, 14 patients (12%) died within 30 days and 34 (29%) died within one year. Postoperative complications included infection (56%), renal failure (24%), need for transfusion (17%) and readmission within 30 days (11%). Logistical regression analysis showed that the P-POSSUM correlated well with observed mortality and infection was a significant predictor of in-hospital mortality (p=0.003). Conclusions The P-POSSUM correlates significantly with outcome and should be used when planning major elective or emergency surgery in patients over 90 years of age. Infective complications appear to be a significant predictor of postoperative mortality. This study supports operative intervention as an option in this extreme age group but we emphasise the importance of appropriate patient selection and judicious clinical care.

  14. Medical record weight (MRW): a new reliable predictor of hospital stay, morbidity and mortality in the hip fracture population?

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Calpin, P

    2016-11-01

    We sought to compare the weight of patient’s medical records (MRW) to that of standardised surgical risk scoring systems in predicting postoperative hospital stay, morbidity, and mortality in patients with hip fracture. Patients admitted for surgical treatment of a newly diagnosed hip fracture over a 3-month period were enrolled. Patients with documented morbidity or mortality had significantly heavier medical records. The MRW was equivalent to the age-adjusted Charlson co-morbidity index and better than the American Society of Anaesthesiologists physical status score (ASA), the Physiological and Operative Severity Score for the enUmeration of Mortality and Morbidity (POSSUM,) and Portsmouth-POSSUM score (P-POSSUM) in correlation with length of hospital admission, p = .003, 95% CI [.15 to .65]. Using logistic regression analysis MRW was as good as, if not better, than the other scoring systems at predicting postoperative morbidity and 90-day mortality. Medical record weight is as good as, or better than, validated surgical risk scoring methods. Larger, multicentre studies are required to validate its use as a surgical risk prediction tool, and it may in future be supplanted by a digital measure of electronic record size. Given its ease of use and low cost, it could easily be used in trauma units globally.

  15. Fecal indicators and zoonotic pathogens in household drinking water taps fed from rainwater tanks in Southeast Queensland, Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmed, W; Hodgers, L; Sidhu, J P S; Toze, S

    2012-01-01

    In this study, the microbiological quality of household tap water samples fed from rainwater tanks was assessed by monitoring the numbers of Escherichia coli bacteria and enterococci from 24 households in Southeast Queensland (SEQ), Australia. Quantitative PCR (qPCR) was also used for the quantitative detection of zoonotic pathogens in water samples from rainwater tanks and connected household taps. The numbers of zoonotic pathogens were also estimated in fecal samples from possums and various species of birds by using qPCR, as possums and birds are considered to be the potential sources of fecal contamination in roof-harvested rainwater (RHRW). Among the 24 households, 63% of rainwater tank and 58% of connected household tap water (CHTW) samples contained E. coli and exceeded Australian drinking water guidelines of tanks and 83% of CHTW samples also contained enterococci. In all, 21%, 4%, and 13% of rainwater tank samples contained Campylobacter spp., Salmonella spp., and Giardia lamblia, respectively. Similarly, 21% of rainwater tank and 13% of CHTW samples contained Campylobacter spp. and G. lamblia, respectively. The number of E. coli (P = 0.78), Enterococcus (P = 0.64), Campylobacter (P = 0.44), and G. lamblia (P = 0.50) cells in rainwater tanks did not differ significantly from the numbers observed in the CHTW samples. Among the 40 possum fecal samples tested, Campylobacter spp., Cryptosporidium parvum, and G. lamblia were detected in 60%, 13%, and 30% of samples, respectively. Among the 38 bird fecal samples tested, Campylobacter spp., Salmonella spp., C. parvum, and G. lamblia were detected in 24%, 11%, 5%, and 13% of the samples, respectively. Household tap water samples fed from rainwater tanks tested in the study appeared to be highly variable. Regular cleaning of roofs and gutters, along with pruning of overhanging tree branches, might also prove effective in reducing animal fecal contamination of rainwater tanks.

  16. Natural sources of salinity in the Brazos River, Texas with particular reference to the Croton and salt Croton Creek basins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baker, R.C.; Hughes, Leon S.; Yost, I.D.

    1964-01-01

    The average daily load of the Brazos River at Possum Kingdom Reservoir is about 2,800 tons of dissolved solids, of which 1,000 tons is chloride. More than 85 percent of the chloride load is contributed by the Salt Fork Brazos River, and more than 50 percent of the chloride load of the Brazos River originates from salt springs and seeps in Croton and Salt Crotdn Creeks, which are tributaries of Salt Fork Brazos River. The rest of the chloride is contributed from many small sources.

  17. Hoyt S. Vandenberg, The Life of a General

    Science.gov (United States)

    2000-01-01

    their replacements-Larry Kuter, Hay- wood "Possum" Hansell, and Muir "Santy" Fairchild-were just as vociferous. One would think that inserting a...devastated, were still being felt, and McMullen’s cross-training plan was designed to insulate sAc from its recurrence. He endeavored to train all pilots...professionals; they had not risen to the top during the war by being passive and pliable . They sincerely believed they were right and that the desires of

  18. Meta-analysis of cancer transcriptomes: A new approach to uncover molecular pathological events in different cancer tissues

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sundus Iqbal

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available To explore secrets of metastatic cancers, individual expression of true sets of respective genes must spread across the tissue. In this study, meta-analysis for transcriptional profiles of oncogenes was carried out to hunt critical genes or networks helping in metastasizing cancers. For this, transcriptomic analysis of different cancerous tissues causing leukemia, lung, liver, spleen, colorectal, colon, breast, bladder, and kidney cancers was performed by extracting microarray expression data from online resource; Gene Expression Omnibus. A newly developed bioinformatics technique; Dynamic Impact Approach (DIA was applied for enrichment analysis of transcriptional profiles using Database for Annotation Visualization and Integrated Discovery (DAVID. Furthermore, oPOSSUM (v. 2.0 and Cytoscape (v. 2.8.2 were used for in-depth analysis of transcription factors and regulatory gene networks respectively. DAVID analysis uncovered the most significantly enriched pathways in molecular functions that were 'Ubiquitin thiolesterase activity' up regulated in blood, breast, bladder, colorectal, lung, spleen, prostrate cancer. 'Transforming growth factor beta receptor activity' was inhibited in all cancers except leukemia, colon and liver cancer. oPOSSUM further revealed highly over-represented Transcription Factors (TFs; Broad-complex_3, Broad-complex_4, and Foxd3 except for leukemia and bladder cancer. From these findings, it is possible to target genes and networks, play a crucial role in the development of cancer. In the future, these transcription factors can serve as potential candidates for the therapeutic drug targets which can impede the deadly spread.

  19. A common tendency for phylogenetic overdispersion in mammalian assemblages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooper, Natalie; Rodríguez, Jesús; Purvis, Andy

    2008-09-07

    Competition has long been proposed as an important force in structuring mammalian communities. Although early work recognized that competition has a phylogenetic dimension, only with recent increases in the availability of phylogenies have true phylogenetic investigations of mammalian community structure become possible. We test whether the phylogenetic structure of 142 assemblages from three mammalian clades (New World monkeys, North American ground squirrels and Australasian possums) shows the imprint of competition. The full set of assemblages display a highly significant tendency for members to be more distantly related than expected by chance (phylogenetic overdispersion). The overdispersion is also significant within two of the clades (monkeys and squirrels) separately. This is the first demonstration of widespread overdispersion in mammal assemblages and implies an important role for either competition between close relatives where traits are conserved, habitat filtering where distant relatives share convergent traits, or both.

  20. Damage Control Orthopedics Management as Vital Procedure in Elderly Patients with Femoral Neck Fractures Complicated with Chronic Renal Failure: A Retrospective Cohort Study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chenhui Dong

    Full Text Available Chronic renal failure (CRF predisposes to hip fractures in elderly patients, with high subsequent mortality. Selection and timing of the surgical procedure of such patients is a serious challenge. Many clinicians believe in earlier surgery as preferable and providing better outcomes. Damage control orthopedics (DCO aids to adjust and optimize the overall condition of patients.In 32 patients with femoral neck fractures complicated with CRF, we evaluated how the timing of the surgery determines the mortality rates if the DCO approach is applied. Preoperative ASA grading, POSSUM score, P-POSSUM score and DCO were carried out. Based on the assessment, timing of the surgery was ascertained.Of a total of 32 patients, twenty-nine patients were accepted for either early (< 48 hours; n = 18 or delayed (3-10 days; n = 10 surgery. Hip arthroplasty (total hip arthroplasty and hemiarthroplasty was the principal surgery option. All patients survived operation and were followed up postoperatively with the average time of 30 days. Postoperative complications tended to occur at higher rates in the early vs. delayed surgery group (7/18 vs. 5/10. During follow up, a total of 3 patients died in both groups (2/18 in the early surgery and 1/10 in the delayed surgery group, mostly from multi-organ failures and acute respiratory distress syndrome. There was no significant difference in complication rates and Harris hip score between both groups.In patients with femoral neck fracture complicated with CRF, delaying the surgery for several days does not increase the incidence of postoperative adverse events.

  1. Can hibernators sense and evade fires? Olfactory acuity and locomotor performance during deep torpor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nowack, Julia; Delesalle, Marine; Stawski, Clare; Geiser, Fritz

    2016-10-01

    Increased habitat fragmentation, global warming and other human activities have caused a rise in the frequency of wildfires worldwide. To reduce the risks of uncontrollable fires, prescribed burns are generally conducted during the colder months of the year, a time when in many mammals torpor is expressed regularly. Torpor is crucial for energy conservation, but the low body temperatures ( T b) are associated with a decreased responsiveness and torpid animals might therefore face an increased mortality risk during fires. We tested whether hibernators in deep torpor (a) can respond to the smell of smoke and (b) can climb to avoid fires at T bs below normothermic levels. Our data show that torpid eastern pygmy-possums ( Cercartetus nanus) are able to detect smoke and also can climb. All males aroused from torpor when the smoke stimulus was presented at an ambient temperature ( T a) of 15 °C ( T b ˜18 °C), whereas females only raised their heads. The responses were less pronounced at T a 10 °C. The first coordinated movement of possums along a branch was observed at a mean T b of 15.6 °C, and animals were even able to climb their prehensile tail when they reached a mean T b of 24.4 °C. Our study shows that hibernators can sense smoke and move at low T b. However, our data also illustrate that at T b ≤13 °C, C. nanus show decreased responsiveness and locomotor performance and highlight that prescribed burns during winter should be avoided on very cold days to allow torpid animals enough time to respond.

  2. Audit of preoperative fluid resuscitation in perforation peritonitis patients using Physiological and Operative Severity Score for enUmeration of Mortality and Morbidity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Sunil

    2017-01-01

    Context: Debate continues regarding fluid (crystalloid vs. colloid) of choice for resuscitation. Physiological and Operative Severity Score for enUmeration of Mortality and Morbidity (POSSUM) may be used to compare the benefits of preoperative fluid resuscitation with crystalloids and colloids in peritonitis patients. Aims: The aim of this study is to compare crystalloid and colloid for preoperative resuscitation using morbidity, mortality, length of hospital stay (LOS), and time taken to resuscitate as the outcome parameters. Settings and Design: This was a prospective randomized clinical trial. Subjects and Methods: One hundred and seven peritonitis patients were prospectively randomized to fluid resuscitation by crystalloid (Group A) and colloid (Group B) solutions. Physiological score component of POSSUM was recorded before and after fluid resuscitation; operative score component was recorded at discharge/death. These scores were then used to calculate the predicted morbidity and mortality before and after the fluid resuscitation. Statistical Analysis Used: Effect on morbidity and mortality were compared by repeated measure analysis of variance, and its significance was tested by Tukey's test. LOS and time taken to resuscitate were compared using unpaired t-test. Significance was taken at 5%. Results: Fluid resuscitation improved mean predicted morbidity by 0.095 and 0.137 in Group A and Group B, respectively. Similarly, fluid resuscitation improved predicted mortality by 0.145 and 0.185 in Group A and Group B, respectively. These changes were statistically significant. Improvement in morbidity and mortality appeared greater in Group B. No difference was found in the two groups for LOS and time to resuscitate. Conclusions: Preoperative fluid resuscitation using either crystalloid or colloidal solutions decreases morbidity as well as mortality in peritonitis patients.

  3. Dental fluorosis and skeletal fluoride content as biomarkers of excess fluoride exposure in marsupials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Death, Clare; Coulson, Graeme; Kierdorf, Uwe; Kierdorf, Horst; Morris, William K; Hufschmid, Jasmin

    2015-11-15

    Particulate and gaseous fluoride emissions contaminate vegetation near fluoride-emitting industries, potentially impacting herbivorous wildlife in neighboring areas. Dental fluorosis has been associated with consumption of fluoride-contaminated foliage by juvenile livestock and wildlife in Europe and North America. For the first time, we explored the epidemiology and comparative pathology of dental fluorosis in Australian marsupials residing near an aluminium smelter. Six species (Macropus giganteus, Macropus rufogriseus, Wallabia bicolor, Phascolarctos cinereus, Trichosurus vulpecula, Pseudocheirus peregrinus) demonstrated significantly higher bone fluoride levels in the high (n=161 individuals), compared to the low (n=67 individuals), fluoride areas (pdental fluorosis in eutherian mammals. Within the high-fluoride area, 67% of individuals across the six species showed dental enamel lesions, compared to 3% in the low-fluoride areas. Molars that erupted before weaning were significantly less likely to display pathological lesions than those developing later, and molars in the posterior portion of the dental arcade were more severely fluorotic than anterior molars in all six species. The severity of dental lesions was positively associated with increasing bone fluoride levels in all species, revealing a potential biomarker of excess fluoride exposure.

  4. Transfusão sangüínea no intra-operatório, complicações e prognóstico Transfusión sanguínea en el intraoperatorio, complicaciones y pronóstico Complications and prognosis of intraoperative blood transfusion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    João Manoel Silva Junior

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available JUSTIFICATIVA E OBJETIVOS: Transfusões sangüíneas no intra-operatório estão associadas a aumento de complicações no pós-operatório e custos hospitalares. Portanto, este estudo avaliou as características, complicações e possíveis fatores de riscos para morte em pacientes cirúrgicos que necessitaram de transfusões sangüíneas no intra-operatório. MÉTODO: Coorte prospectiva, durante período de um ano, no centro cirúrgico de hospital terciário. Incluíram-se pacientes com idade acima de 18 anos que necessitaram de transfusões sangüíneas no intra-operatório. Testemunhas de Jeová, pacientes que receberam transfusões prévias, falência coronariana e lesão encefálica aguda foram excluídos. RESULTADOS: O estudo envolveu 80 pacientes, com idade média de 68,4 ± 14,1 anos. Os pacientes ASA II foram prevalentes com 69,6% dos casos, os escores APACHE II e POSSUM foram em média, respectivamente, 13,6 ± 4,4 e 37,5 ± 11,4. A hemoglobina média no momento da transfusão era 8,2 ± 1,8 g.dL-1 e 19% dos pacientes apresentavam hemoglobina maior que 10 g.dL-1. Os pacientes receberam em média 2,2 ± 0,9 UI de concentrados de hemácias. A mortalidade hospitalar foi 26,3%. As complicações pós-transfusões totalizaram 57,5% dos casos no pós-operatório e a mais freqüente foi infecção. Foram fatores independentes de morte na regressão logística os escores APACHE II (OR = 1,34; IC 95% 1,102 - 1,622, POSSUM (OR = 1,08; IC 95% 1,008 - 1,150 e número de unidades de concentrados de hemácias recebidas (OR = 2,22; IC 95% 1,100 - 4,463. Quanto maior o número de transfusões sangüíneas, maiores as incidências de complicações e mortalidade. CONCLUSÕES: O valor de hemoglobina e o número de unidades de concentrados de hemácias utilizados foram elevados comparados com os estudos que preconizam estratégias restritivas. Foi encontrada nesta amostra alta incidência de complicações, principalmente infecções, e elevada

  5. Evaluation of next generation sequencing for the analysis of Eimeria communities in wildlife.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vermeulen, Elke T; Lott, Matthew J; Eldridge, Mark D B; Power, Michelle L

    2016-05-01

    Next-generation sequencing (NGS) techniques are well-established for studying bacterial communities but not yet for microbial eukaryotes. Parasite communities remain poorly studied, due in part to the lack of reliable and accessible molecular methods to analyse eukaryotic communities. We aimed to develop and evaluate a methodology to analyse communities of the protozoan parasite Eimeria from populations of the Australian marsupial Petrogale penicillata (brush-tailed rock-wallaby) using NGS. An oocyst purification method for small sample sizes and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) protocol for the 18S rRNA locus targeting Eimeria was developed and optimised prior to sequencing on the Illumina MiSeq platform. A data analysis approach was developed by modifying methods from bacterial metagenomics and utilising existing Eimeria sequences in GenBank. Operational taxonomic unit (OTU) assignment at a high similarity threshold (97%) was more accurate at assigning Eimeria contigs into Eimeria OTUs but at a lower threshold (95%) there was greater resolution between OTU consensus sequences. The assessment of two amplification PCR methods prior to Illumina MiSeq, single and nested PCR, determined that single PCR was more sensitive to Eimeria as more Eimeria OTUs were detected in single amplicons. We have developed a simple and cost-effective approach to a data analysis pipeline for community analysis of eukaryotic organisms using Eimeria communities as a model. The pipeline provides a basis for evaluation using other eukaryotic organisms and potential for diverse community analysis studies.

  6. Taxonomic revision of Phascogale tapoatafa (Meyer, 1793) (Dasyuridae; Marsupialia), including descriptions of two new subspecies and confirmation of P. pirata Thomas, 1904 as a ‘Top End’ endemic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aplin, K. P.; Rhind, S. G.; Ten Have, J.; Chesser, R. Terry

    2015-01-01

    The Australian Brush-tailed Phascogale (Phascogale tapoatafa sensu lato) has a broad but highly fragmented distribution around the periphery of the Australian continent and all populations are under significant ongoing threat to survival. A new appraisal of morphological and molecular diversity within the group reveals that the population in the ‘Top End’ of the Northern Territory is specifically distinct from all others, including those in the Kimberley region of Western Australia to the west and on Cape York of Queensland to the east. The name P. pirata Thomas, 1904 is available for the ‘Top End’ taxon. Three geographically disjunct populations are distinguished at subspecies level within P. tapoatafa on a suite of external and cranio-dental features; these are found in southeast Australia from South Australia to mid-coastal Queensland (nominotypical tapoatafa), southwest Western Australia (wambenger subsp. nov.), and the Kimberley region of Western Australia (kimberleyensis subsp. nov.). A potential fourth subspecies occurs on Cape York but remains too poorly represented in collections for adequate characterization. Molecular divergence estimates based on partial sequences of the mitochondrial cytochrome b gene indicate that the range disjunction across southern Australia probably dates from the Late Pliocene, with the multiple disjunctions across northern Australia being more recent though almost certainly exceeding 400,000 years. An argument is made for the continued use of the subspecies rank in Australian mammalogy, despite a general lack of consistency in its current application.

  7. Diversity of Bartonella species detected in arthropod vectors from animals in Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaewmongkol, Gunn; Kaewmongkol, Sarawan; Burmej, Halina; Bennett, Mark D; Fleming, Patricia A; Adams, Peter J; Wayne, Adrian F; Ryan, Una; Irwin, Peter J; Fenwick, Stanley G

    2011-09-01

    A variety of Bartonella species were detected in two species of ticks and three species of fleas collected from marsupial hosts; brush-tailed bettong or woylie (Bettongia penicillata) and western barred bandicoots (Perameles bougainville) and from a rodent host; Rattus fuscipes in Western Australia. Bartonella species were detected using nested-PCR of the gltA gene and the 16S-23S ribosomal internal transcribed spacer region (ITS), and species were characterized using DNA sequencing of the 16S rRNA, gltA, rpoB, ftsZ genes and the ITS region. Bartonella rattaustraliani and B. coopersplainsensis were detected in Ixodes spp. ticks and fleas (Stephanocircus pectinipes) respectively collected from rodents. Two novel Bartonella species were detected from marsupials; Candidatus Bartonella woyliei n. sp. was detected in both fleas (Pygiopsylla hilli) and ticks (Ixodes australiensis) collected from woylies and Candidatus Bartonella bandicootii n. sp. was detected in fleas (Pygiopsylla tunneyi) collected from western barred bandicoots. Concatenated phylogenetic analysis of all 5 loci clarified the marsupial cluster of Bartonella species in Australia and confirmed the species status of these two Bartonella species in ticks and fleas from woylies and western barred bandicoots, which are classified as threatened species and are vulnerable to extinction.

  8. Advantages and limitations of the Five Domains model for assessing welfare impacts associated with vertebrate pest control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beausoleil, N J; Mellor, D J

    2015-01-01

    Many pest control activities have the potential to impact negatively on the welfare of animals, and animal welfare is an important consideration in the development, implementation and evaluation of ethically defensible vertebrate pest control. Thus, reliable and accurate methods for assessing welfare impacts are required. The Five Domains model provides a systematic method for identifying potential or actual welfare impacts associated with an event or situation in four physical or functional domains (nutrition, environment, health or functional status, behaviour) and one mental domain (overall mental or affective state). Here we evaluate the advantages and limitations of the Five Domains model for this purpose and illustrate them using specific examples from a recent assessment of the welfare impacts of poisons used to lethally control possums in New Zealand. The model has a number of advantages which include the following: the systematic identification of a wide range of impacts associated with a variety of control tools; the production of relative rankings of tools in terms of their welfare impacts; the easy incorporation of new information into assessments; and the highlighting of additional information needed. For example, a recent analysis of sodium fluoroacetate (1080) poisoning in possums revealed the need for more information on the period from the onset of clinical signs to the point at which consciousness is lost, as well as on the level of consciousness during or after the occurrence of muscle spasms and seizures. The model is also valuable because it clearly separates physical or functional and affective impacts, encourages more comprehensive consideration of negative affective experiences than has occurred in the past, and allows development and evaluation of targeted mitigation strategies. Caution must be used in interpreting and applying the outputs of the model, most importantly because relative rankings or grades are fundamentally qualitative in

  9. Relationship between Inflammatory Response and Estimated Complication Rate after Total Hip Arthroplasty

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Xu-Xu Chen; Tao Wang; Jian Li; Hui Kang

    2016-01-01

    Background:After total hip arthroplasty (THA),there is a noteworthy inflammatory response.The inflammatory response is associated with postoperative recovery and complications.However,there had been few reports on the relationship between inflammatory response and postoperative complication rate.The aim of the present study was to investigate early inflammatory response in the first 3 days after THA,and to identify the relationship between inflammatory response and estimated complication rate after surgery.Methods:It was a prospective,nonrandomized cohort study.There were 148 patients who underwent unilateral THA in our hospital enrolled.Blood samples were collected preoperatively in the morning of the surgery and at 24,48,and 72 h after surgery.C-reactive protein (CRP) and interleukin-6 (IL-6) in peripheral blood were measured.The modified physiological and operative severity score for the enumeration of the morbidity (POSSUM) was recorded pre-and intra-operatively.Based on the score,estimated complication rate was calculated.Harris score was used to assess hip function before and after surgery.Results:IL-6 levels reached the peak at 24 h after surgery and CRP at 48 h.After that,both of the levels decreased.The mean Harris scores significantly increased from 41.62 ± 23.47 before surgery to 72.75 ± 9.13 at 3 days after surgery.The Harris scores after surgery did not have a significant relation with either IL-6 or CRP peak levels (P=0.165,P =0.34 l,respectively).Both CRP and IL-6 peak levels significantly and positively correlated with estimated complication rate after surgery.The estimated complication rate calculated using the POSSUM system was 43 cases of 148 patients.Actually,there were only 28 cases that were observed to get postoperative complications during hospitalization.However,there was no significant difference between estimated and observed complication rates (P =0.078).In the group with complications,the CRP and IL-6 peak levels were significantly

  10. Urbanization impacts on mammals across urban-forest edges and a predictive model of edge effects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villaseñor, Nélida R; Driscoll, Don A; Escobar, Martín A H; Gibbons, Philip; Lindenmayer, David B

    2014-01-01

    With accelerating rates of urbanization worldwide, a better understanding of ecological processes at the wildland-urban interface is critical to conserve biodiversity. We explored the effects of high and low-density housing developments on forest-dwelling mammals. Based on habitat characteristics, we expected a gradual decline in species abundance across forest-urban edges and an increased decline rate in higher contrast edges. We surveyed arboreal mammals in sites of high and low housing density along 600 m transects that spanned urban areas and areas turn on adjacent native forest. We also surveyed forest controls to test whether edge effects extended beyond our edge transects. We fitted models describing richness, total abundance and individual species abundance. Low-density housing developments provided suitable habitat for most arboreal mammals. In contrast, high-density housing developments had lower species richness, total abundance and individual species abundance, but supported the highest abundances of an urban adapter (Trichosurus vulpecula). We did not find the predicted gradual decline in species abundance. Of four species analysed, three exhibited no response to the proximity of urban boundaries, but spilled over into adjacent urban habitat to differing extents. One species (Petaurus australis) had an extended negative response to urban boundaries, suggesting that urban development has impacts beyond 300 m into adjacent forest. Our empirical work demonstrates that high-density housing developments have negative effects on both community and species level responses, except for one urban adapter. We developed a new predictive model of edge effects based on our results and the literature. To predict animal responses across edges, our framework integrates for first time: (1) habitat quality/preference, (2) species response with the proximity to the adjacent habitat, and (3) spillover extent/sensitivity to adjacent habitat boundaries. This framework will

  11. Joint loads in marsupial ankles reflect habitual bipedalism versus quadrupedalism.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristian J Carlson

    Full Text Available Joint surfaces of limb bones are loaded in compression by reaction forces generated from body weight and musculotendon complexes bridging them. In general, joints of eutherian mammals have regions of high radiodensity subchondral bone that are better at resisting compressive forces than low radiodensity subchondral bone. Identifying similar form-function relationships between subchondral radiodensity distribution and joint load distribution within the marsupial postcranium, in addition to providing a richer understanding of marsupial functional morphology, can serve as a phylogenetic control in evaluating analogous relationships within eutherian mammals. Where commonalities are established across phylogenetic borders, unifying principles in mammalian physiology, morphology, and behavior can be identified. Here, we assess subchondral radiodensity patterns in distal tibiae of several marsupial taxa characterized by different habitual activities (e.g., locomotion. Computed tomography scanning, maximum intensity projection maps, and pixel counting were used to quantify radiodensity in 41 distal tibiae of bipedal (5 species, arboreal quadrupedal (4 species, and terrestrial quadrupedal (5 species marsupials. Bipeds (Macropus and Wallabia exhibit more expansive areas of high radiodensity in the distal tibia than arboreal (Dendrolagus, Phascolarctos, and Trichosurus or terrestrial quadrupeds (Sarcophilus, Thylacinus, Lasiorhinus, and Vombatus, which may reflect the former carrying body weight only through the hind limbs. Arboreal quadrupeds exhibit smallest areas of high radiodensity, though they differ non-significantly from terrestrial quadrupeds. This could indicate slightly more compliant gaits by arboreal quadrupeds compared to terrestrial quadrupeds. The observed radiodensity patterns in marsupial tibiae, though their statistical differences disappear when controlling for phylogeny, corroborate previously documented patterns in primates and

  12. Identification and differentiation of Cryptosporidium species by capillary electrophoresis single-strand conformation polymorphism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Power, Michelle L; Holley, Marita; Ryan, Una M; Worden, Paul; Gillings, Michael R

    2011-01-01

    Cryptosporidium species generally lack distinguishing morphological traits, and consequently, molecular methods are commonly used for parasite identification. Various methods for Cryptosporidium identification have been proposed, each with their advantages and disadvantages. In this study, we show that capillary electrophoresis coupled with single-strand conformation polymorphism (CE-SSCP) is a rapid, simple and cost-effective method for the identification of Cryptosporidium species and genotypes. Species could be readily differentiated based on the SSCP mobility of amplified 18S rRNA gene molecules. Clones that differed by single-nucleotide polymorphisms could be distinguished on CE-SSCP mobility. Profiles of species known to have heterogenic copies of 18S rRNA gene contained multiple peaks. Cloning and sequencing of Cryptosporidium parvum, Cryptosporidium hominis, Cryptosporidium fayeri and Cryptosporidium possum genotype 18S rRNA gene amplicons confirmed that these multiple peaks represented type A and type B 18S rRNA gene copies. CE-SSCP provides a reliable and sensitive analysis for epidemiological studies, environmental detection and diversity screening.

  13. [Mycobacterium bovis in wildlife of the dairy regions of Santa Fe (Argentina)].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdala, Alejandro A; Garbaccio, Sergio; Zumárraga, Martín; Tarabla, Héctor D

    2015-01-01

    Control eradication campaigns of bovine tuberculosis based on the «test and slaughter» approach were successful in many countries and regions; however, in some areas the infection persists and one of the main reasons is Mycobacterium bovis infection in wild life species. Argentina has applied the same approach since 1999, achieving progress in dairy cattle herds. Nonetheless, the wildlife role has never been investigated. The objective of this study was to determine if wildlife from the Santa Fe dairy area is infected with M. bovis. Wildlife species having a positive tuberculin skin test were captured in five dairy farms. Ninety five wildlife mammals were captured; M. bovis was recovered from 7 possums (Didelphys albiventris), from one fox (Lycolapex gimnocercus) and from one rat (Rattus norvegicus). None of the animals exhibited macroscopic lesions. The most frequently isolated M. bovis spoligotypes were types 34 (4 isolates) and 12 (3 isolates). Spoligotype 34 is the most frequently isolated type in Argentine cattle. The role of D. albiventris as spillover host of M. bovis is discussed in this study.

  14. The evolution of relative brain size in marsupials is energetically constrained but not driven by behavioral complexity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weisbecker, Vera; Blomberg, Simon; Goldizen, Anne W; Brown, Meredeth; Fisher, Diana

    2015-01-01

    Evolutionary increases in mammalian brain size relative to body size are energetically costly but are also thought to confer selective advantages by permitting the evolution of cognitively complex behaviors. However, many suggested associations between brain size and specific behaviors - particularly related to social complexity - are possibly confounded by the reproductive diversity of placental mammals, whose brain size evolution is the most frequently studied. Based on a phylogenetic generalized least squares analysis of a data set on the reproductively homogenous clade of marsupials, we provide the first quantitative comparison of two hypotheses based on energetic constraints (maternal investment and seasonality) with two hypotheses that posit behavioral selection on relative brain size (social complexity and environmental interactions). We show that the two behavioral hypotheses have far less support than the constraint hypotheses. The only unambiguous associates of brain size are the constraint variables of litter size and seasonality. We also found no association between brain size and specific behavioral complexity categories within kangaroos, dasyurids, and possums. The largest-brained marsupials after phylogenetic correction are from low-seasonality New Guinea, supporting the notion that low seasonality represents greater nutrition safety for brain maintenance. Alternatively, low seasonality might improve the maternal support of offspring brain growth. The lack of behavioral brain size associates, found here and elsewhere, supports the general 'cognitive buffer hypothesis' as the best explanatory framework of mammalian brain size evolution. However, it is possible that brain size alone simply does not provide sufficient resolution on the question of how brain morphology and cognitive capacities coevolve.

  15. Effect of imbalanced nutrients and immigration on Prymnesium parvum community dominance and toxicity: Results from in-lake microcosm experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Errera, R.M.; Roelke, D.L.; Kiesling, R.L.; Brooks, B.W.; Grover, J.P.; Schwierzke, L.; Urena-Boeck, F.; Baker, J.W.; Pinckney, J.L.

    2008-01-01

    Prymnesium parvum, a haptophyte species, forms harmful blooms, including those that have caused severe fish kills in Texas, USA, over the past 6 yr. We studied P. parvum dynamics using in situ microcosm experiments at Lake Possum Kingdom, Texas, during 3 seasons (fall 2004, winter and spring 2005). Experimental treatments included full and partial nutrient enrichment (encompassing nitrogen [N] and phosphorus [P] deficient treatments), P. parvum immigration and combinations of these factors. In the control and N and P deficient treatments, P. parvum populations dominated the community, but only in the N deficient treatments did P. parvum experience a significant growth in the population. In contrast, when nutrients were not limiting, P. parvum tended to lose its competitive edge to other taxa such as chlorophytes, euglenophytes and diatoms, which then dominated the community. Population growth of P. parvum was also stimulated through immigration, but only during the winter experiment, a period of the year when bloom initiation is common. This finding suggests that movement into the water column may be an important process leading to P. parvum bloom initiation. Toxicity of P. parvum to fish was also affected by the nutrient changes: during conditions of no nutrient addition P. parvum was most toxic; intermediate toxicity was observed under N and P deficient conditions, and full nutrient enrichments resulted in nearly non-toxic conditions. ?? Inter-Research 2008.

  16. Seasonal changes in plasma androgens, glucocorticoids and glucocorticoid-binding proteins in the marsupial sugar glider Petaurus breviceps.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bradley, A J; Stoddart, D M

    1992-01-01

    An investigation spanning two breeding seasons was carried out to examine endocrine changes associated with reproduction in a wild population of the marsupial sugar glider Petaurus breviceps, a small arboreal gliding possum. Using techniques of equilibrium dialysis and polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis at steady-state conditions, a high-affinity, low-capacity glucocorticoid-binding protein was demonstrated in the plasma of Petaurus breviceps. Equilibrium dialysis at 36 degrees C using cortisol gave a high-affinity binding constant of 95 +/- 5.2 litres/mumol for a presumed corticosteroid-binding globulin (CBG) while the binding constant for the cortisol-albumin interaction was 3.5 +/- 0.4 litres/mmol. There was no difference between the sexes in the affinity of binding of cortisol to CBG; however, the cortisol-binding capacity underwent seasonal variation in both sexes. Progesterone was bound strongly to the presumed CBG while neither oestradiol nor aldosterone appeared to be bound with high affinity to P. breviceps plasma. In the males, peaks in the plasma concentration of testosterone coincided with the July-September breeding season in both years. A significant inverse relationship was shown to exist between the plasma testosterone concentration and the CBG-binding capacity. In both sexes an increase occurred in the plasma concentration of free cortisol during the first breeding season, a pattern which was not repeated in the subsequent breeding season, possibly due to a lower population density in that year.

  17. A Preliminary Report of Changing Quaternary Mammal Faunas in Subalpine New Guinea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hope, Geoffrey; Flannery, Tim; Boeardi

    1993-07-01

    The faunas found in the mountains of central Irian Jaya have experienced dramatic changes through the late Quaternary. Remains of two previously unknown species of large marsupial, Maokopia ronaldi and Protemnodon hopei, have been recovered from unrelated cave and fluvial deposits which today occur in dense upper montane forest. Direct dating of the finds has not as yet been possible, but stratigraphic, sedimentologic, and palynologic evidence indicates that these species lived near a climatic treeline in subalpine grassland in the late Pleistocene. At higher altitudes a rockshelter provided the second known mid-Holocene record of Thylogale christenseni and Thylogale sp. cf. brunii, apparently extinct grassland wallabies. The two largest remaining subalpine mammal species are being locally exterminated by hunting, leaving only a large murid, Mallomys gunung, which weighs less than 2.0 kg. The area thus records the disappearance of a grassland-adapted fauna. The possum Pseudocheirops cupreus dominates in modem hunting returns, although this species is totally absent from the local fossil records. It may thus be in the process of invading a vacated and disturbed niche from the upper montane forest.

  18. Mycobacterium ulcerans DNA not detected in faecal samples from Buruli ulcer patients: results of a pilot study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fred S Sarfo

    Full Text Available It has recently been shown that in a Buruli ulcer (BU endemic region of southeastern Australia, significant numbers of possums (native tree-dwelling marsupials have clinical BU disease. Furthermore, based on quantitative PCR (qPCR analysis, animals with BU lesions (and some without shed M. ulcerans DNA in their faeces, indicative of bacterial loads of up to 10(8 organisms/gram. These findings led us to propose that humans might also harbour M. ulcerans in their gastrointestinal tract and shed the bacterium in their faeces. We conducted a pilot study and collected faecal swabs from 26 patients with confirmed BU and 31 healthy household controls. Faecal samples were also collected from 10 healthy controls from non-endemic regions in Ghana. All 67 specimens were negative when tested by IS2404 PCR. The detection sensitivity of this method was ≥10(4 bacteria per gram (wet-weight of human faecal material. We conclude that the human gastrointestinal tract is unlikely to be a significant reservoir of M. ulcerans.

  19. Future Observations of Cosmic Magnetic Fields with LOFAR, SKA and Its Precursors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beck, Rainer

    Polarization observations with the forthcoming large radio telescopes will open a new era in the observation of magnetic fields and should help to understand their origin. Low-frequency radio synchrotron emission from the Milky Way, galaxies and galaxy clusters, observed with the new Low Frequency Array (LOFAR) and the planned Square Kilometre Array (SKA), traces low-energy cosmic ray electrons and allows us to map the structure of weak magnetic fields in the outer regions and halos of galaxies, in halos and relics of clusters and in the Milky Way. Polarization at higher frequencies (1-10 GHz), to be observed with the SKA and its precursors Australia SKA Pathfinder (ASKAP) and the South African MeerKAT telescopes, will trace magnetic fields in the disks and central regions of galaxies and in cluster relics in unprecedented detail. All-sky surveys of Faraday rotation measures towards a dense grid of polarized background sources with ASKAP (project POSSUM) and the SKA are dedicated to measure magnetic fields in intervening galaxies, clusters and intergalactic filaments, and will be used to model the overall structure and strength of magnetic fields in the Milky Way. Cosmic magnetism is "key science" for LOFAR, ASKAP and the SKA.

  20. Future Observations of Cosmic Magnetic Fields with the SKA and its Precursors

    CERN Document Server

    Beck, Rainer

    2011-01-01

    The origin of magnetic fields in the Universe is an open problem in astrophysics and fundamental physics. Polarization observations with the forthcoming large radio telescopes, especially the Square Kilometre Array (SKA), will open a new era in the observation of magnetic fields and should help to understand their origin. Low-frequency radio synchrotron emission, to be observed with LOFAR, MWA and the SKA, traces low-energy cosmic ray electrons and allows us to map the structure of weak magnetic fields in the outer regions and halos of galaxies, in halos and relics of galaxy clusters and in the Milky Way. Polarization at higher frequencies (1-10 GHz), to be observed with the SKA and its precursors ASKAP and MeerKAT, will trace magnetic fields in the disks and central regions of galaxies and in cluster relics in unprecedented detail. All-sky surveys of Faraday rotation measures towards a dense grid of polarized background sources with ASKAP (project POSSUM) and the SKA are dedicated to measure magnetic fields ...

  1. Diversity of color vision: not all Australian marsupials are trichromatic.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wiebke Ebeling

    Full Text Available Color vision in marsupials has recently emerged as a particularly interesting case among mammals. It appears that there are both dichromats and trichromats among closely related species. In contrast to primates, marsupials seem to have evolved a different type of trichromacy that is not linked to the X-chromosome. Based on microspectrophotometry and retinal whole-mount immunohistochemistry, four trichromatic marsupial species have been described: quokka, quenda, honey possum, and fat-tailed dunnart. It has, however, been impossible to identify the photopigment of the third cone type, and genetically, all evidence so far suggests that all marsupials are dichromatic. The tammar wallaby is the only Australian marsupial to date for which there is no evidence of a third cone type. To clarify whether the wallaby is indeed a dichromat or trichromatic like other Australian marsupials, we analyzed the number of cone types in the "dichromatic" wallaby and the "trichromatic" dunnart. Employing identical immunohistochemical protocols, we confirmed that the wallaby has only two cone types, whereas 20-25% of cones remained unlabeled by S- and LM-opsin antibodies in the dunnart retina. In addition, we found no evidence to support the hypothesis that the rod photopigment (rod opsin is expressed in cones which would have explained the absence of a third cone opsin gene. Our study is the first comprehensive and quantitative account of color vision in Australian marsupials where we now know that an unexpected diversity of different color vision systems appears to have evolved.

  2. Hunting for Livelihood in Northeast Gabon: Patterns, Evolution, and Sustainability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert Nasi

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available We suggest an ethno-biological approach to analyze the cultural and social drivers of hunting activities and assess sustainability in villages near Makokou, northeast Gabon, based on interviews with hunters, participatory mapping of hunting territories, and daily records of offtakes for 1 yr. Hunting in villages of northeast Gabon is practiced for both local consumption and cash income to cover basic family expenses. There appears to be no clear tendency to abandon subsistence hunting for commercial hunting as in other regions of Africa. Cultural and socioeconomic factors explain the temporal and spatial variation in hunting activities. Hunting increases in the dry season during circumcision ceremonies, when it is practiced mainly at > 10 km from villages, and decreases during the rainy season because most hunters are occupied by other economic activities. Degraded forest such as secondary regrowth supplies 20% of the animals killed and the greatest diversity of species at short distances from villages. Mature forest supplies the species with the greatest commercial value, e.g., red river hog (Potamochoerus porcus, and is the preferred source of meat for traditional ceremonies. In the last 15 yr, hunting patterns have changed rapidly, mainly because of the spread of gun hunting, which had serious implications for the nature of offtakes. Our results suggest that there is potential to allow hunting for resistant species such as blue duiker (Cephalophus monticola and African brush-tailed porcupine (Atherurus africanus. Other species such as red river hog and small diurnal monkeys require more attention. Specific management systems could be discussed in participatory hunting management plans to identify possible solutions to maintain the population levels of the more critical species.

  3. Stress triangle: do introduced predators exert indirect costs on native predators and prey?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer R Anson

    Full Text Available Non-consumptive effects of predators on each other and on prey populations often exceed the effects of direct predation. These effects can arise from fear responses elevating glucocorticoid (GC hormone levels (predator stress hypothesis or from increased vigilance that reduces foraging efficiency and body condition (predator sensitive foraging hypothesis; both responses can lead to immunosuppression and increased parasite loads. Non-consumptive effects of invasive predators have been little studied, even though their direct impacts on local species are usually greater than those of their native counterparts. To address this issue, we explored the non-consumptive effects of the invasive red fox Vulpes vulpes on two native species in eastern Australia: a reptilian predator, the lace monitor Varanus varius and a marsupial, the ringtail possum Pseudocheirus peregrinus. In particular, we tested predictions derived from the above two hypotheses by comparing the basal glucocorticoid levels, foraging behaviour, body condition and haemoparasite loads of both native species in areas with and without fox suppression. Lace monitors showed no GC response or differences in haemoparasite loads but were more likely to trade safety for higher food rewards, and had higher body condition, in areas of fox suppression than in areas where foxes remained abundant. In contrast, ringtails showed no physiological or behavioural differences between fox-suppressed and control areas. Predator sensitive foraging is a non-consumptive cost for lace monitors in the presence of the fox and most likely represents a response to competition. The ringtail's lack of response to the fox potentially represents complete naiveté or strong and rapid selection to the invasive predator. We suggest evolutionary responses are often overlooked in interactions between native and introduced species, but must be incorporated if we are to understand the suite of forces that shape community

  4. Why biosecurity matters: students' knowledge of biosecurity and implications for future engagement with biosecurity initiatives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ram, Rajesh; France, Bev; Birdsall, Sally

    2016-01-01

    Background: Research on biosecurity is important as New Zealand's agricultural export-driven economy is susceptible to biosecurity threats. Because New Zealand is reliant on the primary industries to drive its economy, bovine diseases such as foot and mouth could have a devastating effect on the economy. Purpose: Making sure that the general public are aware of the importance of maintaining biosecurity is crucial in order to protect New Zealand's economy, human health, the environment, and social and cultural values. New Zealand Year 9 students' knowledge of biosecurity was gauged as these students represented the next generation of individuals tasked to maintain biosecurity in New Zealand. Design: A qualitative approach using the interpretive mode of inquiry was used to investigate the knowledge about biosecurity with New Zealand Year 9 students. Questionnaires and interviews were the data collection tools. Sample: One hundred and seventy-one students completed a questionnaire that consisted of Likert-type questions and open-ended questions. Nine students were interviewed about their knowledge. Results: The findings showed that New Zealand Year 9 students lacked specific knowledge about unwanted plants, animals and microorganisms. These students saw illicit drug plants as unwanted plants and mainly saw possums as unwanted animals in New Zealand. Their knowledge about unwanted microorganisms in New Zealand was dominated by human-disease-causing microbes. A lack of knowledge of biosecurity issues in New Zealand was seen as the major factor in these students limited understanding of biosecurity. Conclusions: Based on these findings, it can be said that knowledge of an issue is critical in enabling individuals to develop an understanding about biosecurity. Explicit teaching of biosecurity-related curriculum topics could provide New Zealand Year 9 students with an opportunity to develop knowledge about biosecurity in New Zealand.

  5. Goal-directed hemostatic therapy using the rotational thromboelastometry in patients requiring emergent cardiovascular surgery

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    Danièle Sartorius

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Aims and Objectives: We assessed the clinical impact of goal-directed coagulation management based on rotational thromboelastometry (ROTEM in patients undergoing emergent cardiovascular surgical procedures. Materials and Methods: Over a 2-year period, data from 71 patients were collected prospectively and blood samples were obtained for coagulation testing. Administration of packed red blood cells (PRBC and hemostatic products were guided by an algorithm using ROTEM-derived information and hemoglobin level. Based on the amount of PRBC transfused, two groups were considered: High bleeders (≥5 PRBC; HB and low bleeders (<5 PRBC; LB. Data were analyzed using Chi-square test, unpaired t-test and analysis of variance as appropriate. Results: Pre-operatively, the HB group (n = 31 was characterized by lower blood fibrinogen and decreased clot amplitude at ROTEM compared with the LB group (n = 40. Intraoperatively, larger amounts of fibrinogen, fresh frozen plasma and platelets were required to normalize the coagulation parameters in the HB group. Post-operatively, the incidence of major thromboembolic and ischemic events did not differ between the two groups (<10% and the observed in-hospital mortality was significantly less than expected by the Physiological and Operative Severity Score for the enumeration of Mortality and Morbidity (POSSUM score, 22% vs. 35% in HB and 5% vs. 13% in LB group. Conclusions: ROTEM-derived information is helpful to detect early coagulation abnormalities and to monitor the response to hemostatic therapy. Early goal-directed management of coagulopathy may improve outcome after cardiovascular surgery.

  6. Establishment of an open database of realistic simulated data for evaluation of partial volume correction techniques in brain PET/MR

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mota, Ana [Instituto de Biofísica e Engenharia Biomédica, FC-UL, Lisboa (Portugal); Institute of Nuclear Medicine, UCL, London (United Kingdom); Cuplov, Vesna [Instituto de Biofísica e Engenharia Biomédica, FC-UL, Lisboa (Portugal); Schott, Jonathan; Hutton, Brian; Thielemans, Kris [Institute of Nuclear Medicine, UCL, London (United Kingdom); Drobnjak, Ivana [Centre of Medical Image Computing, UCL, London (United Kingdom); Dickson, John [Institute of Nuclear Medicine, UCL, London (United Kingdom); Bert, Julien [INSERM UMR1101, LaTIM, CHRU de Brest, Brest (France); Burgos, Ninon; Cardoso, Jorge; Modat, Marc; Ourselin, Sebastien [Centre of Medical Image Computing, UCL, London (United Kingdom); Erlandsson, Kjell [Institute of Nuclear Medicine, UCL, London (United Kingdom)

    2015-05-18

    The Partial Volume (PV) effect in Positron Emission Tomography (PET) imaging leads to loss in quantification accuracy, which manifests in PV effects (small objects occupy partially the sensitive volume of the imaging instrument, resulting in blurred images). Simultaneous acquisition of PET and Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) produces concurrent metabolic and anatomical information. The latter has proved to be very helpful for the correction of PV effects. Currently, there are several techniques used for PV correction. They can be applied directly during the reconstruction process or as a post-processing step after image reconstruction. In order to evaluate the efficacy of the different PV correction techniques in brain- PET, we are constructing a database of simulated data. Here we present the framework and steps involved in constructing this database. Static 18F-FDG epilepsy and 18F-Florbetapir amyloid dementia PET/MR were selected because of their very different characteristics. The methodology followed was based on four main steps: Image pre-processing, Ground Truth (GT) generation, MRI and PET data simulation and reconstruction. All steps used Open Source software and can therefore be repeated at any centre. The framework as well as the database will be freely accessible. Tools used included GIF, FSL, POSSUM, GATE and STIR. The final data obtained after simulation, involving raw or reconstructed PET data together with corresponding MRI datasets, were close to the original patient data. Besides, there is the advantage that data can be compared with the GT. We indicate several parameters that can be improved and optimized.

  7. A large 28S rDNA-based phylogeny confirms the limitations of established morphological characters for classification of proteocephalidean tapeworms (Platyhelminthes, Cestoda

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alain de Chambrier

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Proteocephalidean tapeworms form a diverse group of parasites currently known from 315 valid species. Most of the diversity of adult proteocephalideans can be found in freshwater fishes (predominantly catfishes, a large proportion infects reptiles, but only a few infect amphibians, and a single species has been found to parasitize possums. Although they have a cosmopolitan distribution, a large proportion of taxa are exclusively found in South America. We analyzed the largest proteocephalidean cestode molecular dataset to date comprising more than 100 species (30 new, including representatives from 54 genera (80% and all subfamilies, thus significantly improving upon previous works to develop a molecular phylogeny for the group. The Old World origin of proteocephalideans is confirmed, with their more recent expansion in South America. The earliest diverging lineages are composed of Acanthotaeniinae and Gangesiinae but most of the presently recognized subfamilies (and genera appear not to be monophyletic; a deep systematic reorganization of the order is thus needed and the present subfamilial system should be abandoned. The main characters on which the classical systematics of the group has been built, such as scolex morphology or relative position of genital organs in relation to the longitudinal musculature, are of limited value, as demonstrated by the very weak support for morphologically-defined subfamilies. However, new characters, such as the pattern of uterus development, relative ovary size, and egg structure have been identified, which may be useful in defining phylogenetically well-supported subgroups. A strongly supported lineage infecting various snakes from a wide geographical distribution was found. Although several improvements over previous works regarding phylogenetic resolution and taxon coverage were achieved in this study, the major polytomy in our tree, composed largely of siluriform parasites from the Neotropics, remained

  8. Seroprevalence and Risk Factors for Leptospira Seropositivity in Beef Cattle, Sheep and Deer Farmers in New Zealand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanhueza, J M; Heuer, C; Wilson, P R; Benschop, J; Collins-Emerson, J M

    2016-12-05

    Leptospirosis is a global zoonosis that in New Zealand affects primarily people occupationally exposed to livestock. The objective of this study was to estimate the seroprevalence of five Leptospira serovars in farmers working on cattle, sheep and deer farms that had the serological status of animals previously assessed and to identify risk factors for farmer seropositivity. A total of 178 farmers from 127 properties participated in the study. Blood samples were tested using the microscopic agglutination test (MAT) for the presence of antibodies to Leptospira. Samples with a MAT titre ≥48 were considered seropositive. Using Bayesian statistical analysis, the median seroprevalence of Leptospira, all serovars combined, was estimated to be 6.6% (95% probability interval (PI) 3.6-10.9%). Risk factors associated with seropositivity were assisting deer or cattle calving, farming deer, having ≥25% of flat terrain and high abundance of wild deer on farm, while high possum abundance on farm was negatively associated with seropositivity. No association was observed between farmer serostatus and previously recorded livestock serology. Leptospira seropositivity was associated with influenza-like illness of farmers (RR = 1.7; 95% PI 1.0-2.5). Assuming a causal relationship, this suggested an annual risk of 1.3% (95% PI 0.0-3.0%) of influenza-like illnesses due to Leptospira infection in the population of farmers. The association between seropositivity and disease can be used to estimate the public health burden of leptospirosis in New Zealand. Identifying and understanding risk factors for Leptospira seropositivity can inform preventive measures, hence contributing to the reduction of leptospirosis incidence in farmers.

  9. Encephalization of Australian and New Guinean marsupials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ashwell, K W S

    2008-01-01

    some members of Diprotodontia are of comparable encephalization to eutherians of similar body weight. In particular, honey possums and some gliders show an encephalization level comparable to prosimians, perhaps reflecting convergence in adaptation to similar arboreal niches.

  10. Pre-NELA vs NELA - has anything changed, or is it just an audit exercise?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mak, M; Hakeem, A R; Chitre, V

    2016-11-01

    BACKGROUND Following evidence suggestive of high mortality following emergency laparotomies, the National Emergency Laparotomy Audit (NELA) was set up, highlighting key standards in emergency service provision. Our aim was to compare our NHS trust's adherence to these recommendations immediately prior to, and following, the launch of NELA, and to compare patient outcome. METHODS This was a retrospective study of patients who underwent an emergency laparotomy over the course of 6 months - 3 months either side of the initiation of NELA. RESULTS There were 44 patients before the initiation of NELA (pre-NELA, PN group) and 55 in the first 3 months of NELA (N group). We saw a significant increase in the proportion of patients whose decision to operate was made by the consultant: 75.0% in the PN group vs 100% in N group (subsequent data presented in this order) (P Risk stratification based on Portsmouth Physiological and Operative Severity Score for the enUmeration of Mortality and Morbidity (P-POSSUM) score showed no difference in high-risk patients in both groups (47.7% vs 36.4%, P = 0.306). With the NELA initiative, however, significantly more patients were admitted directly from theatres to the critical care unit, when compared with the pre-NELA period (9.1% vs 27.3%, P = 0.038). This also reflected a significant reduction in unexpected escalation to a higher level of care during this period (10.0% vs 0%, P = 0.036). Significantly more patients had uneventful recovery in the NELA period (52.3 vs 76.4%, P = 0.018), although there was no difference in 30-day mortality between the groups (2.3% vs 7.3%, P = 0.378). CONCLUSIONS This study demonstrated a greater degree of consultant involvement in the decision to operate during NELA. More high-risk patients have been identified preoperatively with diligent risk assessment and, hence, have been proactively admitted to critical care units following laparotomy, which may account for the significant reduction in unexpected

  11. Salvage logging in the montane ash eucalypt forests of the Central Highlands of Victoria and its potential impacts on biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindenmayer, D B; Ought, K

    2006-08-01

    The two major forms of disturbance in the montane ash eucalypt forests of the Central Highlands of Victoria (southeastern Australia) are clearfell logging and unplanned wildfires. Since the 1930s wildfire has been followed by intensive and extensive salvage-logging operations, which may proceed for many years after a wildfire has occurred. Although applied widely, the potential effects of salvage logging on native flora and fauna have been poorly studied. Our data indicate that the abundance of large trees with hollows is significantly reduced in forests subject to salvage harvesting. This has implications for thepersistence of an array of such cavity-using vertebrates as the endangered arboreal marsupial, Leadbeater's possum (Gymnobelidues leadbeateri). Salvage logging also reduces the prevalence of multiaged montane ash forests--places that typically support the highest diversity of arboreal marsupials and forest birds. Limited research has been conducted on the effects of salvage logging on plants; thus, we constructed hypotheses about potential impacts for further testing based on known responses to clearfell logging and key life history attributes. We predict many species, such as vegetatively resprouting tree ferns, will decline, as they do after clearfelling. We also suggest that seed regenerators, which typically regenerate well after fire or conventional clearfelling, will decline after salvage logging because the stimulation for germination (fire) takes place prior to mechanical disturbance (logging). Understoryplant communities in salvage-logged areas will be dominated by a smaller suite of species, and those that are wind dispersed, have viable soil-stored seed remaining after salvage logging, or have deep rhizomes are likely to be advantaged. We recommend the following improvements to salvage-logging policies that may better incorporate conservation needs in Victorian montane ash forests: (1) exemption of salvage logging from some areas (e.g., old

  12. Comparative analysis of laparoscopic low rectal resections

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    I. L. Chernikovsky

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective: to study the immediate results of laparoscopic intersphincteric resection (ISR and ultralow anterior resection (ULAR of the rectum.Subjects and methods. The results of surgical treatment in 42 patients operated on in the Saint Petersburg Clinical Research-Practical Center for Specialized Medical (Oncology Cares in March 2014 to January 2015 are given. The inclusion criteria were the lower edge of cT1–3N0 adenocarcinoma 2-5 cm above the dentate line and no signs of invasion into the sphincter and levators. All the patients were divided into 2 groups: 1 24 patients who had undergone laparoscopic ISR; 2 18 patients who had laparoscopic ULAR. Both groups were matched for gender, age, body mass index, and CR-POSSUM predicted mortality scores. Thirty-two patients received neoadjuvant chemoradiotherapy. Results. The mean duration of operations did not differ significantly in the groups: 206 ± 46 and 216 ± 24 min (р = 0.72. The differences in the mean volume of blood loss were also insignificant: 85 and 113 ml (р = 0.93. Circular and distal resection margins were intact in all the cases. In 18 (75 % patients in Group 1 and in 14 (77.8 % patients in Group 2, the quality of total mesorectumectomy (TME was rated as grade 3 according to the Quirk criteria (p = 0.83. In Group 1, complications requiring no reoperation occurred in 5 (20.8 % cases: anastomotic incompetence in 3 (12.5 % cases, anastomotic stricture with further bougienage in 1 (4.2 %, and urinary retention in 1 (4.2 %. In Group 2, postoperative coтplications were also observed in 5 (27.8 % cases: necrosis of the brought-out bowel in 2 (11.1 % patients and coloanal incompetence in 1 (5.6 % required reoperation; 2 (11.1 % patients underwent bougienage due to established anastomotic stricture. One month postoperatively, the Wexner constipation scoring system was used to rate the degree of encopresis: anal incontinence turned out to be significantly higher in Group 2 and amounted

  13. 哺乳动物的消化策略(英文)%DIGESTIVE STRATEGIES OF MAMMALS

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2002-01-01

    Understanding an animal's nutritional niche is fundamental to a full appreciation of its ecology,and is important for both pest control and species conservation purposes.Carnivores have digestive systems dominated by the small intestine,which can be related to the generally high digestibility of their food.Omnivores have more complex gastrointestinal tracts,with a hindgut caecum in which some microbial fermentation takes place,and they have longer mean retention times (MRTs) of digesta.The longest MRTs are found in herbivores,in which digesta are retained and fermented by dense microbial populations in one or more regions of relative stasis.However,not all herbivores have digestive systems that maximise fibre digestibility; only ruminants,camelids and very large hindgut fermenters (rhinos,elephants) achieve this.Instead,many other herbivores (foregut fermenters such as kangaroos and small hindgut fermenters such as rabbits,voles and possums) have digestive systems that sacrifice maximal fibre digestibility for a capacity to process large amounts of forage,even when forage fibre content becomes very high.These different digestive strategies result in the wide range of nutritional niches found among mammals.%理解动物的营养生态位是充分理解其整个生态学的基础,对于害兽控制和物种保护也很重要.食肉动物的小肠很发达,这可能与对食物的高消化能力有关;杂食性动物有更复杂的胃肠器官,其后端有可进行发酵的盲肠,消化物的平均滞留时间(mean retention times,MRTs)更长;最长的平均滞留时间见于食草动物,其消化道内高密度的微生物种群对不同滞留区内的消化物进行发酵.但是,并不是所有的食草动物都能够最大程度地消化植物纤维,只有反刍动物、骆驼和个体较大的后肠发酵动物(hindgut fermenter)能够具有这种能力.对比而言,许多其它的食草动物,如前肠发酵的有袋类和小型的后肠发酵动物如兔子、