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Sample records for reproductive fitness potential

  1. Differential fitness costs of reproduction between the sexes

    OpenAIRE

    Penn, Dustin J.; Smith, Ken R.

    2006-01-01

    Natural selection does not necessarily favor maximal reproduction because reproduction imposes fitness costs, reducing parental survival, and offspring quality. Here, we show that parents in a preindustrial population in North America incurred fitness costs from reproduction, and women incurred greater costs than men. We examined the survivorship and reproductive success (Darwinian fitness) of 21,684 couples married between 1860 and 1895 identified in the Utah Population Database. We found th...

  2. Sports Potentials for Physical Fitness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, H. Harrison, Ed.

    1978-01-01

    This report, one of a series on research into specific physical activities and their efficacy in improving and maintaining physical fitness, examines sport participation and the potential it has for developing muscular strength, muscular endurance, and circulatory-respiratory endurance. The activities consist primarily of the following twelve…

  3. Whole Protein Native Fitness Potentials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faraggi, Eshel; Kloczkowski, Andrzej

    2013-03-01

    Protein structure prediction can be separated into two tasks: sample the configuration space of the protein chain, and assign a fitness between these hypothetical models and the native structure of the protein. One of the more promising developments in this area is that of knowledge based energy functions. However, standard approaches using pair-wise interactions have shown shortcomings demonstrated by the superiority of multi-body-potentials. These shortcomings are due to residue pair-wise interaction being dependent on other residues along the chain. We developed a method that uses whole protein information filtered through machine learners to score protein models based on their likeness to native structures. For all models we calculated parameters associated with the distance to the solvent and with distances between residues. These parameters, in addition to energy estimates obtained by using a four-body-potential, DFIRE, and RWPlus were used as training for machine learners to predict the fitness of the models. Testing on CASP 9 targets showed that our method is superior to DFIRE, RWPlus, and the four-body potential, which are considered standards in the field.

  4. Sex recombination, and reproductive fitness: an experimental study using Paramecium

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nyberg, D.

    1982-08-01

    The effect of sex and recombination on reproductive fitness are measured using five wild stocks of Paramecium primaurelia. Among the wild stocks there were highly significant differences in growth rates. No hybrid had as low a fitness as the least fit parental stock. Recombination produced genotypes of higher fitness than those of either parent only in the cross between the two stocks of lowest fitness. The increase in variance of fitness as a result of recombination was almost exclusively attributable to the generation lines with low fitness. The fitness consequences of sexuality and mate choice were stock specific; some individuals leaving the most descendants by inbreeding, others by outcrossing. For most crosses the short-term advantage of sex, if any, accrue from the fusion of different gametes (hybrid vigor) and not from recombination. Since the homozygous genotype with the highest fitnes left the most progeny by inbreeding (no recombination), the persistence of conjugation in P. primaurelia is paradoxical. (JMT)

  5. Corticosterone-mediated reproductive decisions: sex allocation, the cost of reproduction and maternal fitness

    OpenAIRE

    Love, Oliver P.

    2007-01-01

    Managing reproductive investment within the scope of an individual’s energetic condition is required to maximize fitness. To be successful, individuals must make the correct decisions about when to reproduce, when to abandon an attempt, how many resources to invest in current and future attempts and where those resources should be allocated. These reproductive decisions therefore involve complex life-history trade-offs between an individual’s condition and current reproduction, future reprodu...

  6. Toxoplasma gondii decreases the reproductive fitness in mice

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Dvořáková-Hortová, K.; Šídlová, A.; Děd, Lukáš; Hladovcová, D.; Vieweg, M.; Weidner, W.; Steger, K.; Stopka, P.; Paradowska-Dogan, A.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 9, č. 6 (2014), s. 1-11 E-ISSN 1932-6203 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) ED1.1.00/02.0109 Institutional support: RVO:86652036 Keywords : Toxoplasma gondii * reproductive fitness * DNA methylation Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 3.234, year: 2014

  7. Recreational fishing selectively captures individuals with the highest fitness potential.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutter, David A H; Suski, Cory D; Philipp, David P; Klefoth, Thomas; Wahl, David H; Kersten, Petra; Cooke, Steven J; Arlinghaus, Robert

    2012-12-18

    Fisheries-induced evolution and its impact on the productivity of exploited fish stocks remains a highly contested research topic in applied fish evolution and fisheries science. Although many quantitative models assume that larger, more fecund fish are preferentially removed by fishing, there is no empirical evidence describing the relationship between vulnerability to capture and individual reproductive fitness in the wild. Using males from two lines of largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides) selectively bred over three generations for either high (HV) or low (LV) vulnerability to angling as a model system, we show that the trait "vulnerability to angling" positively correlates with aggression, intensity of parental care, and reproductive fitness. The difference in reproductive fitness between HV and LV fish was particularly evident among larger males, which are also the preferred mating partners of females. Our study constitutes experimental evidence that recreational angling selectively captures individuals with the highest potential for reproductive fitness. Our study further suggests that selective removal of the fittest individuals likely occurs in many fisheries that target species engaged in parental care. As a result, depending on the ecological context, angling-induced selection may have negative consequences for recruitment within wild populations of largemouth bass and possibly other exploited species in which behavioral patterns that determine fitness, such as aggression or parental care, also affect their vulnerability to fishing gear.

  8. Cross-Generational Reproductive Fitness Enforced by Microchimeric Maternal Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kinder, Jeremy M; Jiang, Tony T; Ertelt, James M; Xin, Lijun; Strong, Beverly S; Shaaban, Aimen F; Way, Sing Sing

    2015-07-30

    Exposure to maternal tissue during in utero development imprints tolerance to immunologically foreign non-inherited maternal antigens (NIMA) that persists into adulthood. The biological advantage of this tolerance, conserved across mammalian species, remains unclear. Here, we show maternal cells that establish microchimerism in female offspring during development promote systemic accumulation of immune suppressive regulatory T cells (Tregs) with NIMA specificity. NIMA-specific Tregs expand during pregnancies sired by males expressing alloantigens with overlapping NIMA specificity, thereby averting fetal wastage triggered by prenatal infection and non-infectious disruptions of fetal tolerance. Therefore, exposure to NIMA selectively enhances reproductive success in second-generation females carrying embryos with overlapping paternally inherited antigens. These findings demonstrate that genetic fitness, canonically thought to be restricted to Mendelian inheritance, is enhanced in female placental mammals through vertically transferred maternal cells that promote conservation of NIMA and enforce cross-generational reproductive benefits. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. The forms and fitness cost of senescence : Age-specific recapture, survival, reproduction, and reproductive value in a wild bird population

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bouwhuis, Sandra; Choquet, Remi; Sheldon, Ben C.; Verhulst, Simon

    Longitudinal studies of senescence accumulate rapidly from natural populations. However, it is largely unknown whether different fitness components senesce in parallel, how reproductive and survival senescence contribute to declines in reproductive value, and how large the fitness cost of senescence

  10. [Fitness of sexual reproduction of Toona ciliata var. pubescens natural populations and their sexual reproduction and regeneration].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Hong Lan; Zhang, Lu; Jia, Li Ming; Liang, Yue-Long; Cai, Jun Huo

    2018-04-01

    To examine the reproduction fitness coefficients and individual-level fitness of Toona ciliata var. pubescens, their sexual reproduction and natural regeneration were investigated during 2006-2016, with four natural populations in Jiulianshan National Reserve as test objects. The results showed that there were only 2-10 trees for the natural populations of T. ciliata var. pubescens with a small initial number of fruiting plants (3-9 trees), which were from the initial fruiting plants or their first/second generation. The sexual reproduction of these isolated populations were significantly different, and their seed production capacities tended to decline over time. With the maturing of communities, soil seed banks and seed germinations were extremely poor, and the number of trees that could be growing to mature stage was nearly zero. The optimum maturity age of T. ciliata var. pubescens was about 40 a, and the fitness coefficients (2.0-2.8) rapidly increased in early development stage, but then was sharply reduced (0.3-0.5), and then gradually dropped to almost 0. There were significant differences in the fitness at individual level (0-14 tree·cm -2 ) among different populations, but their values were low (close to zero). Based on the existing reproduction rate, the actual values of sexual reproduction and regeneration fitness were much lower than the predicted ones. Due to the low level of genetic fitness, the sexual reproductive ability of different populations all showed decreasing trends. The natural sexual regeneration ability tended to decline, while the fitness of T. ciliata var. pubescens further decreased. All those factors suggested higher investment risks. Therefore, the systems of sexual reproduction became unbalanced and deteriorating. We proposed that more studies, including breeding mating, pollination, seed setting, and genetic diversity evaluation, are needed. Moreover, we should provide suitable forest environment through cleaning up litter in the

  11. Low dose TBT exposure decreases amphipod immunocompetence and reproductive fitness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobson, Therese; Sundelin, Brita; Yang, Gongda; Ford, Alex T

    2011-01-17

    The antifouling agent tributyltin (TBT) is a highly toxic pollutant present in many aquatic ecosystems. Despite of regulations on the usage of TBT, it remains in high concentrations in sediments both in harbors and in off-shore sites. The toxicity of TBT in mollusks is well documented. However, adverse effects in other aquatic organisms, such as crustaceans, are less well known. This study is an effort to assess the effects of environmentally realistic concentrations of TBT on an ecologically important species in Swedish fresh and brackish water ecosystems, the benthic amphipod Monoporeia affinis. Field collected animals were exposed during gonad maturation to TBT (70 and 170 ng/g sediment d wt) for five weeks in static microcosms with natural sediment. Exposure concentrations were chosen to reflect effects at concentrations found in Swedish coastal sediment, but below expected effects on survival. TBT exposure resulted in a statistically significant adverse effect on oocyte viability and a doubling of the prevalence of microsporidian parasites in females, from 17% in the control to 34% in the 170 ng TBT/g sediment d wt exposure. No effects on survival were observed. Borderline significant effects were observed on male sexual maturation in the 70 ng TBT/g d wt exposure and on ecdysteroid levels in the 170 ng/g sediment d wt exposure. Both reproduction and parasite infection effects are of ecological importance since they have the potential to affect population viability in the field. This study gives further evidence to the connection between low dose contaminant exposure and increases in microsporidian parasite infection. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. The Slavic NBN Founder Mutation: A Role for Reproductive Fitness?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eva Seemanova

    Full Text Available The vast majority of patients with Nijmegen Breakage Syndrome (NBS are of Slavic origin and carry a deleterious deletion (c.657del5; rs587776650 in the NBN gene on chromosome 8q21. This mutation is essentially confined to Slavic populations and may thus be considered a Slavic founder mutation. Notably, not a single parenthood of a homozygous c.657del5 carrier has been reported to date, while heterozygous carriers do reproduce but have an increased cancer risk. These observations seem to conflict with the considerable carrier frequency of c.657del5 of 0.5% to 1% as observed in different Slavic populations because deleterious mutations would be eliminated quite rapidly by purifying selection. Therefore, we propose that heterozygous c.657del5 carriers have increased reproductive success, i.e., that the mutation confers heterozygote advantage. In fact, in our cohort study of the reproductive history of 24 NBS pedigrees from the Czech Republic, we observed that female carriers gave birth to more children on average than female non-carriers, while no such reproductive differences were observed for males. We also estimate that c.657del5 likely occurred less than 300 generations ago, thus supporting the view that the original mutation predated the historic split and subsequent spread of the 'Slavic people'. We surmise that the higher fertility of female c.657del5 carriers reflects a lower miscarriage rate in these women, thereby reflecting the role of the NBN gene product, nibrin, in the repair of DNA double strand breaks and their processing in immune gene rearrangements, telomere maintenance, and meiotic recombination, akin to the previously described role of the DNA repair genes BRCA1 and BRCA2.

  13. Helpers increase the reproductive potential of offspring in cooperative meerkats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Russell, A.F; Young, A.J; Spong, G; Jordan, N.R; Clutton-Brock, T.H

    2006-01-01

    In both animal and human societies, individuals may forego personal reproduction and provide care to the offspring of others. Studies aimed at investigating the adaptive nature of such cooperative breeding systems in vertebrates typically calculate helper ‘fitness’ from relationships of helper numbers and offspring survival to independence. The aim of this study is to use observations and supplemental feeding experiments in cooperatively breeding meerkats, Suricata suricatta, to investigate whether helpers influence the long-term reproductive potential of offspring during adulthood. We show that helpers have a significant and positive influence on the probability that offspring gain direct reproductive success in their lifetimes. This effect arises because helpers both reduce the age at which offspring begin to reproduce as subordinates and increase the probability that they will compete successfully for alpha rank. Supplemental feeding experiments confirm the causality of these results. Our results suggest that one can neither discount the significance of helper effects when none is found nor necessarily estimate accurately the fitness benefit that helpers accrue, unless their effects on offspring are considered in the long term. PMID:17476771

  14. No intra-locus sexual conflict over reproductive fitness or ageing in field crickets.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Felix Zajitschek

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Differences in the ways in which males and females maximize evolutionary fitness can lead to intra-locus sexual conflict in which genes delivering fitness benefits to one sex are costly when expressed in the other. Trade-offs between current reproductive effort and future reproduction and survival are fundamental to the evolutionary biology of ageing. This leads to the prediction that sex differences in the optimization of age-dependent reproductive effort may generate intra-locus sexual conflict over ageing rates. Here we test for intra-locus sexual conflict over age-dependent reproductive effort and longevity in the black field cricket, Teleogryllus commodus. Using a half-sib breeding design, we show that the most important components of male and female reproductive effort (male calling effort and the number of eggs laid by females were positively genetically correlated, especially in early adulthood. However, the genetic relationships between longevity and reproductive effort were different for males and females, leading to low genetic covariation between male and female longevity. The apparent absence of intra-locus sexual conflict over ageing suggests that male and female longevity can evolve largely independently of one another.

  15. Social context and reproductive potential affect worker reproductive decisions in a eusocial insect.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Boris Yagound

    Full Text Available Context-dependent decision-making conditions individual plasticity and is an integrant part of alternative reproductive strategies. In eusocial Hymenoptera (ants, bees and wasps, the discovery of worker reproductive parasitism recently challenged the view of workers as a homogeneous collective entity and stressed the need to consider them as autonomous units capable of elaborate choices which influence their fitness returns. The reproductive decisions of individual workers thus need to be investigated and taken into account to understand the regulation of reproduction in insect societies. However, we know virtually nothing about the proximate mechanisms at the basis of worker reproductive decisions. Here, we test the hypothesis that the capacity of workers to reproduce in foreign colonies lies in their ability to react differently according to the colonial context and whether this reaction is influenced by a particular internal state. Using the bumble bee Bombus terrestris, we show that workers exhibit an extremely high reproductive plasticity which is conditioned by the social context they experience. Fertile workers reintroduced into their mother colony reverted to sterility, as expected. On the contrary, a high level of ovary activity persisted in fertile workers introduced into a foreign nest, and this despite more frequent direct contacts with the queen and the brood than control workers. Foreign workers' reproductive decisions were not affected by the resident queen, their level of fertility being similar whether or not the queen was removed from the host colony. Workers' physiological state at the time of introduction is also of crucial importance, since infertile workers failed to develop a reproductive phenotype in a foreign nest. Therefore, both internal and environmental factors appear to condition individual reproductive strategies in this species, suggesting that more complex decision-making mechanisms are involved in the regulation

  16. The self-perceived survival ability and reproductive fitness (SPFit) theory of substance use disorders

    OpenAIRE

    Newlin, David B.

    2002-01-01

    A new theory of substance use disorders is proposed—the SPFit theory—that is based on evolutionary biology and adaptive systems. Self‐perceived survival ability and reproductive fitness (SPFit) is proposed as a human psychobiological construct that prioritizes and organizes (i.e. motivates) behavior, but is highly vulnerable to temporary, artificial activation by drugs of abuse. Autoshaping/ sign‐tracking/feature positive phenomena are proposed to underlie the development of craving and expec...

  17. Evolution of sociality by natural selection on variances in reproductive fitness: evidence from a social bee

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stevens Mark I

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The Central Limit Theorem (CLT is a statistical principle that states that as the number of repeated samples from any population increase, the variance among sample means will decrease and means will become more normally distributed. It has been conjectured that the CLT has the potential to provide benefits for group living in some animals via greater predictability in food acquisition, if the number of foraging bouts increases with group size. The potential existence of benefits for group living derived from a purely statistical principle is highly intriguing and it has implications for the origins of sociality. Results Here we show that in a social allodapine bee the relationship between cumulative food acquisition (measured as total brood weight and colony size accords with the CLT. We show that deviations from expected food income decrease with group size, and that brood weights become more normally distributed both over time and with increasing colony size, as predicted by the CLT. Larger colonies are better able to match egg production to expected food intake, and better able to avoid costs associated with producing more brood than can be reared while reducing the risk of under-exploiting the food resources that may be available. Conclusion These benefits to group living derive from a purely statistical principle, rather than from ecological, ergonomic or genetic factors, and could apply to a wide variety of species. This in turn suggests that the CLT may provide benefits at the early evolutionary stages of sociality and that evolution of group size could result from selection on variances in reproductive fitness. In addition, they may help explain why sociality has evolved in some groups and not others.

  18. Evolution of sociality by natural selection on variances in reproductive fitness: evidence from a social bee.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stevens, Mark I; Hogendoorn, Katja; Schwarz, Michael P

    2007-08-29

    The Central Limit Theorem (CLT) is a statistical principle that states that as the number of repeated samples from any population increase, the variance among sample means will decrease and means will become more normally distributed. It has been conjectured that the CLT has the potential to provide benefits for group living in some animals via greater predictability in food acquisition, if the number of foraging bouts increases with group size. The potential existence of benefits for group living derived from a purely statistical principle is highly intriguing and it has implications for the origins of sociality. Here we show that in a social allodapine bee the relationship between cumulative food acquisition (measured as total brood weight) and colony size accords with the CLT. We show that deviations from expected food income decrease with group size, and that brood weights become more normally distributed both over time and with increasing colony size, as predicted by the CLT. Larger colonies are better able to match egg production to expected food intake, and better able to avoid costs associated with producing more brood than can be reared while reducing the risk of under-exploiting the food resources that may be available. These benefits to group living derive from a purely statistical principle, rather than from ecological, ergonomic or genetic factors, and could apply to a wide variety of species. This in turn suggests that the CLT may provide benefits at the early evolutionary stages of sociality and that evolution of group size could result from selection on variances in reproductive fitness. In addition, they may help explain why sociality has evolved in some groups and not others.

  19. Quarkonium level fitting with two-power potentials

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Joshi, G.C.; Wignall, J.W.G.

    1981-01-01

    An attempt has been made to fit psi and UPSILON energy levels and leptonic decay width ratios with a non-relativistic potential model using a potential of the form V(r) = Arsup(p) + Brsup(q) + C. It is found that reasonable fits to states below hadronic decay threshold can be obtained for values of the powers p and q anywhere along a family of curves in the (p,q) plane that smoothly join the Martin potential (p = 0, q = 0.1) to the potential forms with p approximately -1 suggested by QCD; for the latter case the best fit is obtained with q approximately 0.4 - 0.5

  20. What shapes fitness costs of reproduction in long-lived iteroparous species? A case study on the Alpine ibex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garnier, Alexandre; Gaillard, Jean-Michel; Gauthier, Dominique; Besnard, Aurélien

    2016-01-01

    The fitness costs of reproduction can be masked by individual differences, and may only become apparent during adverse environmental conditions. Individual differences, however, are usually assessed by reproductive success, so how fitness costs are influenced by the interplay between the environmental context and overall individual differences requires further investigation. Here, we evaluated fitness costs of reproduction based on 15 yr of monitoring of individual Alpine ibex (Capra ibex) during a period when the population was affected by a severe disease outbreak (pneumonia). We quantified fitness costs using a novel multi-event capture-mark-recapture (CMR) modeling approach that accounted for uncertainty in reproductive status to estimate the survival and reproductive success of female ibex while also accounting for overall individual heterogeneity using mixture models. Our results show that the ability of females to reproduce was highly heterogeneous. In particular, one group including 76% of females had a much higher probability of giving birth annually (between 0.66 and 0.77, depending on the previous reproductive status) than females of the second group (24% of females, between 0 and 0.05 probability of giving birth annually). Low reproductive costs in terms of future reproduction occurred and were independent of the pneumonia outbreak. There was no survival cost of reproduction either before or after the epizootic, but the cost was high during the epizootic. Our findings indicate that adverse environmental conditions, such as disease outbreaks, may lead to survival costs of reproduction in long-lived species and select against females that have a high reproductive effort. Thereby, the occurrence of adverse conditions increases the diversity of reproductive tactics within a population.

  1. Towards greater realism in inclusive fitness models: the case of worker reproduction in insect societies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wenseleers, Tom; Helanterä, Heikki; Alves, Denise A.; Dueñez-Guzmán, Edgar; Pamilo, Pekka

    2013-01-01

    The conflicts over sex allocation and male production in insect societies have long served as an important test bed for Hamilton's theory of inclusive fitness, but have for the most part been considered separately. Here, we develop new coevolutionary models to examine the interaction between these two conflicts and demonstrate that sex ratio and colony productivity costs of worker reproduction can lead to vastly different outcomes even in species that show no variation in their relatedness structure. Empirical data on worker-produced males in eight species of Melipona bees support the predictions from a model that takes into account the demographic details of colony growth and reproduction. Overall, these models contribute significantly to explaining behavioural variation that previous theories could not account for. PMID:24132088

  2. The self-perceived survival ability and reproductive fitness (SPFit) theory of substance use disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newlin, David B

    2002-04-01

    A new theory of substance use disorders is proposed-the SPFit theory-that is based on evolutionary biology and adaptive systems. Self-perceived survival ability and reproductive fitness (SPFit) is proposed as a human psychobiological construct that prioritizes and organizes (i.e. motivates) behavior, but is highly vulnerable to temporary, artificial activation by drugs of abuse. Autoshaping/sign-tracking/feature positive phenomena are proposed to underlie the development of craving and expectations about drugs as the individual learns that abused drugs will easily and reliably inflate SPFit. The cortico-mesolimbic dopamine system and its modulating interconnections are viewed as the biological substrate of SPFit; it is proposed to be a survival and reproductive motivation system rather than a reward center or reward pathway. Finally, the concept of modularity of mind is applied to the SPFit construct. Although considerable empirical data are consistent with the theory, new research is needed to test specific hypotheses derived from SPFit theory.

  3. Triorganotin as a compound with potential reproductive toxicity in mammals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V.S. Delgado Filho

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Organotin compounds are typical environmental contaminants and suspected endocrine-disrupting substances, which cause irreversible sexual abnormality in female mollusks, called "imposex". However, little is known about the capability of triorganotin compounds, such as tributyltin and triphenyltin, to cause disorders in the sexual development and reproductive functions of mammals, including humans and rodents. Moreover, these compounds can act as potential competitive inhibitors of aromatase enzyme and other steroidogenic enzymes, affecting the reproductive capacity of male and female mammals. In this review, we discuss the cellular, biochemical, and molecular mechanisms by which triorganotin compounds induce adverse effects in the mammalian reproductive function.

  4. Fitness

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... gov home http://www.girlshealth.gov/ Home Fitness Fitness Want to look and feel your best? Physical ... are? Check out this info: What is physical fitness? top Physical fitness means you can do everyday ...

  5. The Potential of Nanotechnology in Medically Assisted Reproduction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariana H. Remião

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Reproductive medicine is a field of science which searches for new alternatives not only to help couples achieve pregnancy and preserve fertility, but also to diagnose and treat diseases which can impair the normal operation of the reproductive tract. Assisted reproductive technology (ART is a set of methodologies applied to cases related to infertility. Despite being highly practiced worldwide, ART presents some challenges, which still require special attention. Nanotechnology, as a tool for reproductive medicine, has been considered to help overcome some of those impairments. Over recent years, nanotechnology approaches applied to reproductive medicine have provided strategies to improve diagnosis and increase specificity and sensitivity. For in vitro embryo production, studies in non-human models have been used to deliver molecules to gametes and embryos. The exploration of nanotechnology for ART would bring great advances. In this way, experiments in non-human models to test the development and safety of new protocols using nanomaterials are very important for informing potential future employment in humans. This paper presents recent developments in nanotechnology regarding impairments still faced by ART: ovary stimulation, multiple pregnancy, and genetic disorders. New perspectives for further use of nanotechnology in reproductive medicine studies are also discussed.

  6. Fitness prospects: effects of age, sex and recruitment age on reproductive value in a long-lived seabird.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, He; Rebke, Maren; Becker, Peter H; Bouwhuis, Sandra

    2015-01-01

    Reproductive value is an integrated measure of survival and reproduction fundamental to understanding life-history evolution and population dynamics, but little is known about intraspecific variation in reproductive value and factors explaining such variation, if any. By applying generalized additive mixed models to longitudinal individual-based data of the common tern Sterna hirundo, we estimated age-specific annual survival probability, breeding probability and reproductive performance, based on which we calculated age-specific reproductive values. We investigated effects of sex and recruitment age (RA) on each trait. We found age effects on all traits, with survival and breeding probability declining with age, while reproductive performance first improved with age before levelling off. We only found a very small, marginally significant, sex effect on survival probability, but evidence for decreasing age-specific breeding probability and reproductive performance with RA. As a result, males had slightly lower age-specific reproductive values than females, while birds of both sexes that recruited at the earliest ages of 2 and 3 years (i.e. 54% of the tern population) had somewhat higher fitness prospects than birds recruiting at later ages. While the RA effects on breeding probability and reproductive performance were statistically significant, these effects were not large enough to translate to significant effects on reproductive value. Age-specific reproductive values provided evidence for senescence, which came with fitness costs in a range of 17-21% for the sex-RA groups. Our study suggests that intraspecific variation in reproductive value may exist, but that, in the common tern, the differences are small. © 2014 The Authors. Journal of Animal Ecology © 2014 British Ecological Society.

  7. CRAPONE, Optical Model Potential Fit of Neutron Scattering Data

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fabbri, F.; Fratamico, G.; Reffo, G.

    2004-01-01

    1 - Description of problem or function: Automatic search for local and non-local optical potential parameters for neutrons. Total, elastic, differential elastic cross sections, l=0 and l=1 strength functions and scattering length can be considered. 2 - Method of solution: A fitting procedure is applied to different sets of experimental data depending on the local or non-local approximation chosen. In the non-local approximation the fitting procedure can be simultaneously performed over the whole energy range. The best fit is obtained when a set of parameters is found where CHI 2 is at its minimum. The solution of the system equations is obtained by diagonalization of the matrix according to the Jacobi method

  8. Leptin and its potential interest in assisted reproduction cycles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Catteau, A; Caillon, H; Barrière, P; Denis, M G; Masson, D; Fréour, T

    2016-04-01

    Leptin, an adipose hormone, has been shown to control energy homeostasis and food intake, and exert many actions on female reproductive function. Consequently, this adipokine is a pivotal factor in studies conducted on animal models and humans to decipher the mechanisms behind the infertility often observed in obese women. A systematic PubMed search was conducted on all articles, published up to January 2015 and related to leptin and its actions on energy balance and reproduction, using the following key words: leptin, reproduction, infertility, IVF and controlled ovarian stimulation. The available literature was reviewed in order to provide an overview of the current knowledge on the physiological roles of leptin, its involvement in female reproductive function and its potential interest as a prognostic marker in IVF cycles. Animal and human studies show that leptin communicates nutritional status to the central nervous system and emerging evidence has demonstrated that leptin is involved in the control of reproductive functions by acting both directly on the ovaries and indirectly on the central nervous system. With respect to the clinical use of leptin as a biomarker in IVF cycles, a systematic review of the literature suggested its potential interest as a predictor of IVF outcome, as high serum and/or follicular fluid leptin concentrations have correlated negatively with cycle outcome. However, these preliminary results remain to be confirmed. Leptin regulates energy balance and female reproductive function, mainly through its action on hypothalamic-pituitary-ovarian function, whose molecular and cellular aspects are progressively being deciphered. Preliminary studies evaluating leptin as a biomarker in human IVF seem promising but need further confirmation. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  9. Seasonal temperature variations influence tapetum mitosis patterns associated with reproductive fitness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lavania, Umesh C; Basu, Surochita; Kushwaha, Jyotsana Singh; Lavania, Seshu

    2014-09-01

    Environmental stress in plants impacts many biological processes, including male gametogenesis, and affects several cytological mechanisms that are strongly interrelated. To understand the likely impact of rising temperature on reproductive fitness in the climate change regime, a study of tapetal mitosis and its accompanying meiosis over seasons was made to elucidate the influence of temperature change on the cytological events occurring during microsporogenesis. For this we used two species of an environmentally sensitive plant system, i.e., genus Cymbopogon Sprengel (Poaceae), namely Cymbopogon nardus (L.) Rendle var. confertiflorus (Steud.) Bor (2n = 20) and Cymbopogon jwaruncusha (Jones) Schult. (2n = 20). Both species flower profusely during extreme summer (48 °C) and mild winter (15 °C) but support low and high seed fertility, respectively, in the two seasons. We have shown that tapetal mitotic patterns over seasons entail differential behavior for tapetal mitosis. During the process of tapetum development there are episodes of endomitosis that form either (i) an endopolyploid genomically imbalanced uninucleate and multinucleate tapetum, and (or) (ii) an acytokinetic multinucleate genomically balanced tapetum, with the progression of meiosis in the accompanying sporogenous tissue. The relative frequency of occurrence of the two types of tapetum mitosis patterns is significantly different in the two seasons, and it is found to be correlated with the temperature conditions. Whereas, the former (genomically imbalanced tapetum) are prevalent during the hot summer, the latter (genomically balanced tapetum) are frequent under optimal conditions. Such a differential behaviour in tapetal mitosis vis-à-vis temperature change is also correspondingly accompanied by substantial disturbances or regularity in meiotic anaphase disjunction. Both species show similar patterns. The study underpins that tapetal mitotic behaviour per se could be a reasonable indicator to

  10. Impacts of Elevated Atmospheric CO2 and O3 on Paper Birch (Betula papyrifera: Reproductive Fitness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joseph N. T. Darbah

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Atmospheric CO2 and tropospheric O3 are rising in many regions of the world. Little is known about how these two commonly co-occurring gases will affect reproductive fitness of important forest tree species. Here, we report on the long-term effects of CO3 and O3 for paper birch seedlings exposed for nearly their entire life history at the Aspen FACE (Free Air Carbon Dioxide Enrichment site in Rhinelander, WI. Elevated CO2 increased both male and female flower production, while elevated O3 increased female flower production compared to trees in control rings. Interestingly, very little flowering has yet occurred in combined treatment. Elevated CO2 had significant positive effect on birch catkin size, weight, and germination success rate (elevated CO2 increased germination rate of birch by 110% compared to ambient CO2 concentrations, decreased seedling mortality by 73%, increased seed weight by 17%, increased root length by 59%, and root-to-shoot ratio was significantly decreased, all at 3 weeks after germination, while the opposite was true of elevated O3 (elevated O3 decreased the germination rate of birch by 62%, decreased seed weight by 25%, and increased root length by 15%. Under elevated CO2, plant dry mass increased by 9 and 78% at the end of 3 and 14 weeks, respectively. Also, the root and shoot lengths, as well as the biomass of the seedlings, were increased for seeds produced under elevated CO2, while the reverse was true for seedlings from seeds produced under the elevated O3. Similar trends in treatment differences were observed in seed characteristics, germination, and seedling development for seeds collected in both 2004 and 2005. Our results suggest that elevated CO2 and O3 can dramatically affect flowering, seed production, and seed quality of paper birch, affecting reproductive fitness of this species.

  11. Vitamin D status predicts reproductive fitness in a wild sheep population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Handel, Ian; Watt, Kathryn A; Pilkington, Jill G; Pemberton, Josephine M; Macrae, Alastair; Scott, Philip; McNeilly, Tom N; Berry, Jacqueline L; Clements, Dylan N; Nussey, Daniel H; Mellanby, Richard J

    2016-01-13

    Vitamin D deficiency has been associated with the development of many human diseases, and with poor reproductive performance in laboratory rodents. We currently have no idea how natural selection directly acts on variation in vitamin D metabolism due to a total lack of studies in wild animals. Here, we measured serum 25 hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) concentrations in female Soay sheep that were part of a long-term field study on St Kilda. We found that total 25(OH)D was strongly influenced by age, and that light coloured sheep had higher 25(OH)D3 (but not 25(OH)D2) concentrations than dark sheep. The coat colour polymorphism in Soay sheep is controlled by a single locus, suggesting vitamin D status is heritable in this population. We also observed a very strong relationship between total 25(OH)D concentrations in summer and a ewe's fecundity the following spring. This resulted in a positive association between total 25(OH)D and the number of lambs produced that survived their first year of life, an important component of female reproductive fitness. Our study provides the first insight into naturally-occurring variation in vitamin D metabolites, and offers the first evidence that vitamin D status is both heritable and under natural selection in the wild.

  12. Pollinator responses to floral colour change, nectar, and scent promote reproductive fitness in Quisqualis indica (Combretaceae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Juan; Wang, Gang; Sui, Yi; Wang, Menglin; Zhang, Ling

    2016-04-13

    Floral colour change is visual signals for pollinators to avoid old flowers and increase pollination efficiency. Quisqualis indica flowers change colour from white to pink to red may be associated with a shift from moth to butterfly pollination. To test this hypothesis, we investigated Q. indica populations in Southwest China. Flowers secreted nectar continuously from the evening of anthesis until the following morning, then decreased gradually with floral colour change. The scent compounds in the three floral colour stages were similar; however, the scent composition was different, and the scent emission rate decreased from the white to red stage. Dichogamy in Q. indica prevents self-pollination and interference of male and female functions. Controlled pollinations demonstrated that this species is self-incompatible and needs pollinators for seed production. Different pollinators were attracted in each floral colour stage; mainly moths at night and bees and butterflies during the day. Observations of open-pollinated inflorescences showed that white flowers had a higher fruit set than pink or red flowers, indicating the high contribution of moths to reproductive success. We concluded that the nectar and scent secretion are related to floral colour change in Q. indica, in order to attract different pollinators and promote reproductive fitness.

  13. Impact of artificial rearing systems on the developmental and reproductive fitness of the predatory bug, Orius laevigatus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonte, Maarten; De Clercq, Patrick

    2010-01-01

    This study investigated the effect of several substrate types and moisture sources on the developmental and reproductive fitness of the zoophytophagous predator Orius laevigatus (Fieber) (Hemiptera: Anthocoridae) when fed a factitious prey (i.e. unnatural prey) Ephestia kuehniella (Zeller) eggs, or a meridic artificial diet based on hen's egg yolk. O. laevigatus is known to feed on plants as an alternative food source and to oviposit in plants. E. kuehniella eggs were superior to the artificial diet. Supplementary feeding on plant materials did not compensate for the nutritional shortcomings of the artificial diet. Survival rates showed that oviposition substrates such as bean pods or lipophilic surfaces such as wax paper and plastic were more suitable for rearing O. laevigatus than household paper. The use of green bean pods as a plant substrate did not have a beneficial effect on O. laevigatus. The results indicated that O. laevigatus can successfully complete its nymphal development and realize its full reproductive potential in the absence of plant material. However, plant materials would still be required for oviposition, unless a reliable and cost-effective artificial oviposition substrate were made available. The omission of plant materials from the rearing procedures may reduce production cost of this species and other heteropteran predators.

  14. When stress predicts a shrinking gene pool, trading early reproduction for longevity can increase fitness, even with lower fecundity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William C Ratcliff

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Stresses like dietary restriction or various toxins increase lifespan in taxa as diverse as yeast, Caenorhabditis elegans, Drosophila and rats, by triggering physiological responses that also tend to delay reproduction. Food odors can reverse the effects of dietary restriction, showing that key mechanisms respond to information, not just resources. Such environmental cues can predict population trends, not just individual prospects for survival and reproduction. When population size is increasing, each offspring produced earlier makes a larger proportional contribution to the gene pool, but the reverse is true when population size is declining.We show mathematically that natural selection can favor facultative delay in reproduction when environmental cues predict a decrease in total population size, even if lifetime fecundity decreases with delay. We also show that increased reproduction from waiting for better conditions does not increase fitness (proportional representation when the whole population benefits similarly.We conclude that the beneficial effects of stress on longevity (hormesis in diverse taxa are a side-effect of delaying reproduction in response to environmental cues that population size is likely to decrease. The reversal by food odors of the effects of dietary restriction can be explained as a response to information that population size is less likely to decrease, reducing the chance that delaying reproduction will increase fitness.

  15. Reproductive fitness and dietary choice behavior of the genetic model organism Caenorhabditis elegans under semi-natural conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freyth, Katharina; Janowitz, Tim; Nunes, Frank; Voss, Melanie; Heinick, Alexander; Bertaux, Joanne; Scheu, Stefan; Paul, Rüdiger J

    2010-10-01

    Laboratory breeding conditions of the model organism C. elegans do not correspond with the conditions in its natural soil habitat. To assess the consequences of the differences in environmental conditions, the effects of air composition, medium and bacterial food on reproductive fitness and/or dietary-choice behavior of C. elegans were investigated. The reproductive fitness of C. elegans was maximal under oxygen deficiency and not influenced by a high fractional share of carbon dioxide. In media approximating natural soil structure, reproductive fitness was much lower than in standard laboratory media. In seminatural media, the reproductive fitness of C. elegans was low with the standard laboratory food bacterium E. coli (γ-Proteobacteria), but significantly higher with C. arvensicola (Bacteroidetes) and B. tropica (β-Proteobacteria) as food. Dietary-choice experiments in semi-natural media revealed a low preference of C. elegans for E. coli but significantly higher preferences for C. arvensicola and B. tropica (among other bacteria). Dietary-choice experiments under quasi-natural conditions, which were feasible by fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) of bacteria, showed a high preference of C. elegans for Cytophaga-Flexibacter-Bacteroides, Firmicutes, and β-Proteobacteria, but a low preference for γ-Proteobacteria. The results show that data on C. elegans under standard laboratory conditions have to be carefully interpreted with respect to their biological significance.

  16. Rainfall during parental care reduces reproductive and survival components of fitness in a passerine bird.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Öberg, Meit; Arlt, Debora; Pärt, Tomas; Laugen, Ane T; Eggers, Sönke; Low, Matthew

    2015-01-01

    Adverse weather conditions during parental care may have direct consequences for offspring production, but longer-term effects on juvenile and parental survival are less well known. We used long-term data on reproductive output, recruitment, and parental survival in northern wheatears (Oenanthe oenanthe) to investigate the effects of rainfall during parental care on fledging success, recruitment success (juvenile survival), and parental survival, and how these effects related to nestling age, breeding time, habitat quality, and parental nest visitation rates. While accounting for effects of temperature, fledging success was negatively related to rainfall (days > 10 mm) in the second half of the nestling period, with the magnitude of this effect being greater for breeding attempts early in the season. Recruitment success was, however, more sensitive to the number of rain days in the first half of the nestling period. Rainfall effects on parental survival differed between the sexes; males were more sensitive to rain during the nestling period than females. We demonstrate a probable mechanism driving the rainfall effects on reproductive output: Parental nest visitation rates decline with increasing amounts of daily rainfall, with this effect becoming stronger after consecutive rain days. Our study shows that rain during the nestling stage not only relates to fledging success but also has longer-term effects on recruitment and subsequent parental survival. Thus, if we want to understand or predict population responses to future climate change, we need to consider the potential impacts of changing rainfall patterns in addition to temperature, and how these will affect target species' vital rates.

  17. Effects of sexual reproduction of the inferior competitor Brachionus calyciflorus on its fitness against Brachionus angularis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Chen; Niu, Cuijuan

    2015-03-01

    Sexual reproduction adversely affects the population growth of cyclic parthenogenetic animals. The density-dependent sexual reproduction of a superior competitor could mediate the coexistence. However, the cost of sex may make the inferior competitor more vulnerable. To investigate the effect of sexual reproduction on the inferior competitor, we experimentally paired the competition of one Brachionus angularis clone against three Brachionus calyciflorus clones. One of the B. calyciflorus clones showed a low propensity for sexual reproduction, while the other two showed high propensities. The results show that all B. calyciflorus clones were excluded in the competition for resources at low food level. The increased food level promoted the competition persistence, but the clones did not show a clear pattern. Both the cumulative population density and resting egg production increased with the food level. The cumulative population density decreased with the mixis investment, while the resting egg production increased with the mixis investment. A trade-off between the population growth and sexual reproduction was observed in this research. The results indicate that although higher mixis investment resulted in a lower population density, it would not determinately accelerate the exclusion process of the inferior competitor. On the contrary, higher mixis investment promoted resting egg production before being excluded and thus promised a long-term benefit. In conclusion, our results suggest that mixis investment, to some extent, favored the excluded inferior competitor under fierce competition or some other adverse conditions.

  18. When the Seasons Don't Fit: Speedy Molt as a Routine Carry-Over Cost of Reproduction

    OpenAIRE

    Dietz, M.W.; Rogers, K.G.; Piersma, T.

    2013-01-01

    The failure of animals to fit all life-cycle stages into an annual cycle could reduce the chances of successful breeding. In some cases, non-optimal strategies will be adopted in order to maintain the life-cycle within the scope of one year. We studied trade-offs made by a High Arctic migrant shorebird, the red knot Calidris canutus islandica, between reproduction and wing feather molt carried out in the non-breeding period in the Dutch Wadden Sea. We compared primary molt duration between bi...

  19. Translocation of heavy metals from soils into floral organs and rewards of Cucurbita pepo: Implications for plant reproductive fitness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xun, Erna; Zhang, Yanwen; Zhao, Jimin; Guo, Jixun

    2017-11-01

    Metals and metalloids in soil could be transferred into reproductive organs and floral rewards of hyperaccumulator plants and influence their reproductive success, yet little is known whether non-hyperaccumulator plants can translocate heavy metals from soil into their floral organs and rewards (i.e., nectar and pollen) and, if so, whether plant reproduction will be affected. In our studies, summer squash (Cucurbita pepo L. cv. Golden Apple) was exposed to heavy-metal treatments during bud stage to investigate the translocation of soil-supplemented zinc, copper, nickel and lead into its floral organs (pistil, anther and nectary) and rewards (nectar and pollen) as well as floral metal accumulation effects on its reproduction. The results showed that metals taken up by squash did translocate into its floral organs and rewards, although metal accumulation varied depending on different metal types and concentrations as well as floral organ/reward types. Mean foraging time of honey bees to each male and female flower of squash grown in metal-supplemented soils was shorter relative to that of plants grown in control soils, although the visitation rate of honeybees to both male and female flowers was not affected by metal treatments. Pollen viability, pollen removal and deposition as well as mean mass per seed produced by metal-treated squash that received pollen from plants grown in control soils decreased with elevated soil-supplemented metal concentrations. The fact that squash could translocate soil-supplemented heavy metals into floral organs and rewards indicated possible reproductive consequences caused either directly (i.e., decreasing pollen viability or seed mass) or indirectly (i.e., affecting pollinators' visitation behavior to flowers) to plant fitness. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Better Together: Association With 'Candidatus Liberibacter Asiaticus' Increases the Reproductive Fitness of Its Insect Vector, Diaphorina citri (Hemiptera: Liviidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pelz-Stelinski, K S; Killiny, N

    2016-05-01

    The duration of the evolutionary association between a pathogen and vector can be inferred based on the strength of their mutualistic interactions. A well-adapted pathogen is likely to confer some benefit or, at a minimum, exhibit low pathogenicity toward its host vector. Coevolution of the two toward a mutually beneficial association appears to have occurred between the citrus greening disease pathogen, Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus (Las), and its insect vector, the Asian citrus psyllid, Diaphorina citri (Kuwayama). To better understand the dynamics facilitating transmission, we evaluated the effects of Las infection on the fitness of its vector. Diaphorina citri harboring Las were more fecund than their uninfected counterparts; however, their nymphal development rate and adult survival were comparatively reduced. The finite rate of population increase and net reproductive rate were both greater among Las-infected D. citri as compared with uninfected counterparts, indicating that overall population fitness of infected psyllids was improved given the greater number of offspring produced. Previous reports of transovarial transmission, in conjunction with increased fecundity and population growth rates of Las-positive D. citri found in the current investigation, suggest a long evolutionary relationship between pathogen and vector. The survival of Las-infected adult D. citri was lower compared with uninfected D. citri , which suggests that there may be a fitness trade-off in response to Las infection. A beneficial effect of a plant pathogen on vector fitness may indicate that the pathogen developed a relationship with the insect before secondarily moving to plants.

  1. Rainfall during parental care reduces reproductive and survival components of fitness in a passerine bird

    OpenAIRE

    ?berg, Meit; Arlt, Debora; P?rt, Tomas; Laugen, Ane T; Eggers, S?nke; Low, Matthew

    2014-01-01

    Adverse weather conditions during parental care may have direct consequences for offspring production, but longer-term effects on juvenile and parental survival are less well known. We used long-term data on reproductive output, recruitment, and parental survival in northern wheatears (Oenanthe oenanthe) to investigate the effects of rainfall during parental care on fledging success, recruitment success (juvenile survival), and parental survival, and how these effects related to nestling age,...

  2. Infection, Reproduction Potential, and Root Galling by Root-knot Nematode Species and Concomitant Populations on Peanut and Tobacco

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hirunsalee, Anan; Barker, K. R.; Beute, M. K.

    1995-01-01

    Single populations of Meloidogyne arenaria races 1 (MA1) and 2 (MA2) and M. hapla (MH), and mixed populations of MA1 + MA2 and MA1 + MH with four inoculum levels of eggs were tested on peanut cv. 'Florigiant' and M. incognita-resistant tobacco cv. 'McNair 373' in a greenhouse experiment. Root infection, female development, and reproduction of MA2 on peanut and MA1 on resistant tobacco were limited at 2 and 6 weeks. MA1, MH, and MA1 + MH on peanut had similar root infection (total parasitic forms per root unit) at both 2 and 6 weeks, and similar female development and reproduction potentials at 6 weeks. MA2 tended to depress root infection, female development, and reproduction of MA1 on peanut. MH had little effect on MA1 on this crop. On tobacco, MA2 population had greater incidence of root infection than did MH at 2 weeks. The two nematode species had similar development in roots at 6 weeks. All of these processes were restricted when either MA2 or MH was present together with MA1. As initial inoculum level of parasitically fit populations increased, relative infection ratio on both peanut and tobacco, and reproduction factor on peanut decreased. Populations that had high infection incidence and reproduction rates induced greater root galling than did other populations. Root galling was suppressed in the presence of antagonistic response between nematode populations. PMID:19277277

  3. Social thermoregulation as a potential mechanism linking sociality and fitness: Barbary macaques with more social partners form larger huddles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, Liz A D; Tkaczynski, Patrick J; Lehmann, Julia; Mouna, Mohamed; Majolo, Bonaventura

    2018-04-17

    Individuals with more or stronger social bonds experience enhanced survival and reproduction in various species, though the mechanisms mediating these effects are unclear. Social thermoregulation is a common behaviour across many species which reduces cold stress exposure, body heat loss, and homeostatic energy costs, allowing greater energetic investment in growth, reproduction, and survival, with larger aggregations providing greater benefits. If more social individuals form larger thermoregulation aggregations due to having more potential partners, this would provide a direct link between sociality and fitness. We conducted the first test of this hypothesis by studying social relationships and winter sleeping huddles in wild Barbary macaques (Macaca sylvanus), wherein individuals with more social partners experience greater probability of winter survival. Precipitation and low temperature increased huddle sizes, supporting previous research that huddle size influences thermoregulation and energetics. Huddling relationships were predicted by social (grooming) relationships. Individuals with more social partners therefore formed larger huddles, suggesting reduced energy expenditure and exposure to environmental stressors than less social individuals, potentially explaining how sociality affects survival in this population. This is the first evidence that social thermoregulation may be a direct proximate mechanism by which increased sociality enhances fitness, which may be widely applicable across taxa.

  4. Factors determining the reproductive potential of Pelibuey sheep: Effects of season and parturition on reproductive performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gonzalez Reyna, A.; Ortega Rivas, E.; Murphy, B.D.

    1990-01-01

    The Pelibuey sheep in Mexico are known for their hardiness and reproductive capacity: as a result they represent a reliable source of animal protein especially at the village level. Although their reproductive parameters have been studied, little endocrinological information is available. The objectives of the present study were to characterize the annual reproductive cycle in the Pelibuey ram and ewe, and to study methods of shortening the interval from parturition to first oestrus in lactating post-partum ewes. Under conditions of nutrition and management prevailing in this study, season affected levels of testosterone and LH in the male and LH in the female. Season also influenced oestrous activity, the proportion of ewes ovulating per month and the mean ovulation rate per month. The results indicated that the majority of Pelibuey ewes cycle throughout the year but exhibit reduced gonadal activity during late winter. Pelibuey rams appear to have longer periods of reduced activity (during late autumn and winter), although testosterone levels suggest that rams return to their full reproductive activity earlier (late winter) than ewes. (author). 30 refs, 7 figs, 3 tabs

  5. Communication: Fitting potential energy surfaces with fundamental invariant neural network

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shao, Kejie; Chen, Jun; Zhao, Zhiqiang; Zhang, Dong H., E-mail: zhangdh@dicp.ac.cn [State Key Laboratory of Molecular Reaction Dynamics and Center for Theoretical Computational Chemistry, Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Dalian 116023, People’s Republic of China and University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, People’s Republic of China. (China)

    2016-08-21

    A more flexible neural network (NN) method using the fundamental invariants (FIs) as the input vector is proposed in the construction of potential energy surfaces for molecular systems involving identical atoms. Mathematically, FIs finitely generate the permutation invariant polynomial (PIP) ring. In combination with NN, fundamental invariant neural network (FI-NN) can approximate any function to arbitrary accuracy. Because FI-NN minimizes the size of input permutation invariant polynomials, it can efficiently reduce the evaluation time of potential energy, in particular for polyatomic systems. In this work, we provide the FIs for all possible molecular systems up to five atoms. Potential energy surfaces for OH{sub 3} and CH{sub 4} were constructed with FI-NN, with the accuracy confirmed by full-dimensional quantum dynamic scattering and bound state calculations.

  6. One Size Fits All? Slow Cortical Potentials Neurofeedback: A Review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayer, Kerstin; Wyckoff, Sarah N.; Strehl, Ute

    2013-01-01

    Objective: The intent of this manuscript was to review all published studies on slow cortical potentials (SCP) neurofeedback for the treatment of ADHD, with emphasis on neurophysiological rationale, study design, protocol, outcomes, and limitations. Method: For review, PubMed, MEDLINE, ERIC, and Google Scholar searches identified six studies and…

  7. When the seasons don't fit: speedy molt as a routine carry-over cost of reproduction.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maurine W Dietz

    Full Text Available The failure of animals to fit all life-cycle stages into an annual cycle could reduce the chances of successful breeding. In some cases, non-optimal strategies will be adopted in order to maintain the life-cycle within the scope of one year. We studied trade-offs made by a High Arctic migrant shorebird, the red knot Calidris canutus islandica, between reproduction and wing feather molt carried out in the non-breeding period in the Dutch Wadden Sea. We compared primary molt duration between birds undertaking the full migratory and breeding schedule with birds that forego breeding because they are young or are maintained in captivity. Molt duration was ca. 71 days in breeding adults, which was achieved by an accelerated feather replacement strategy. Second-year birds and captive adults took ca. 22% and 27% longer, respectively. Second-year birds start molt in late June, more than four weeks before captive adults, and almost seven weeks before adults that return from breeding in late July-August. Adults finish molt in October when steeply increasing thermostatic costs and reductions in food availability occur. Primary molt duration was longer in female than in male knots (all ages, which was accordance with the somewhat larger body size of females. Since fast growth leads to lower quality feathers, the speedy wing molt shown by Arctic-breeding birds may represent a time constraint that is an unavoidable and routine cost of reproduction. So far it was hypothesized that only birds over 1 kg would have difficulty fitting molt within a year. Here we show that in birds an order of magnitude smaller, temporal imperatives may impose the adoption of non-optimal life-cycle routines in the entire actively breeding population.

  8. When the seasons don't fit: speedy molt as a routine carry-over cost of reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dietz, Maurine W; Rogers, Ken G; Piersma, Theunis

    2013-01-01

    The failure of animals to fit all life-cycle stages into an annual cycle could reduce the chances of successful breeding. In some cases, non-optimal strategies will be adopted in order to maintain the life-cycle within the scope of one year. We studied trade-offs made by a High Arctic migrant shorebird, the red knot Calidris canutus islandica, between reproduction and wing feather molt carried out in the non-breeding period in the Dutch Wadden Sea. We compared primary molt duration between birds undertaking the full migratory and breeding schedule with birds that forego breeding because they are young or are maintained in captivity. Molt duration was ca. 71 days in breeding adults, which was achieved by an accelerated feather replacement strategy. Second-year birds and captive adults took ca. 22% and 27% longer, respectively. Second-year birds start molt in late June, more than four weeks before captive adults, and almost seven weeks before adults that return from breeding in late July-August. Adults finish molt in October when steeply increasing thermostatic costs and reductions in food availability occur. Primary molt duration was longer in female than in male knots (all ages), which was accordance with the somewhat larger body size of females. Since fast growth leads to lower quality feathers, the speedy wing molt shown by Arctic-breeding birds may represent a time constraint that is an unavoidable and routine cost of reproduction. So far it was hypothesized that only birds over 1 kg would have difficulty fitting molt within a year. Here we show that in birds an order of magnitude smaller, temporal imperatives may impose the adoption of non-optimal life-cycle routines in the entire actively breeding population.

  9. Lightweight males of Podisus nigrispinus (Heteroptera: Pentatomidae neglect lightweight females due low reproductive fitness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. I. A. Pereira

    Full Text Available Abstract Sexual choice by male stink bugs is important because females that experience food shortages lay fewer eggs with lower viability compared with well-fed females. In this study, we investigated whether Podisus nigrispinus (Dallas (Heteroptera: Pentatomidae males fed with a low-quality diet during its nymphal stage show selectivity for sexual partners resulting in high-quality progeny. Lightweight males and females were obtained from nymphs fed weekly with Tenebrio molitor L. (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae pupae. By contrast, heavyweight males and females were fed three times a week and received an extra nutritional source: cotton leaves, Gossypium hirsutum L. (Malvaceae. Lightweight males preferred to mate with heavy females (77.78 ± 14.69%, whereas heavyweight males did not discriminated between light or heavyweight females. Females mated with lightweight males showed similar levels of reproduction to those mated with heavyweight males. The results provide an indication of the importance of male and female body weight for sexual selection in Asopinae stink bugs.

  10. Perspectives on the behavior of entomopathogenic nematodes from dispersal to reproduction: traits contributing to nematode fitness and biocontrol efficacy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffin, Christine T

    2012-06-01

    The entomopathogenic nematodes (EPN) Heterorhabditis and Steinernema are widely used for the biological control of insect pests and are gaining importance as model organisms for studying parasitism and symbiosis. In this paper recent advances in the understanding of EPN behavior are reviewed. The "foraging strategy" paradigm (distinction between species with ambush and cruise strategies) as applied to EPN is being challenged and alternative paradigms proposed. Infection decisions are based on condition of the potential host, and it is becoming clear that already-infected and even long-dead hosts may be invaded, as well as healthy live hosts. The state of the infective juvenile (IJ) also influences infection, and evidence for a phased increase in infectivity of EPN species is mounting. The possibility of social behavior - adaptive interactions between IJs outside the host - is discussed. EPNs' symbiotic bacteria (Photorhabdus and Xenorhabdus) are important for killing the host and rendering it suitable for nematode reproduction, but may reduce survival of IJs, resulting in a trade-off between survival and reproduction. The symbiont also contributes to defence of the cadaver by affecting food-choice decisions of insect and avian scavengers. I review EPN reproductive behavior (including sperm competition, copulation and evidence for attractive and organizational effects of pheromones), and consider the role of endotokia matricida as parental behavior exploited by the symbiont for transmission.

  11. Obesity and the reproductive system disorders: epigenetics as a potential bridge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crujeiras, Ana B; Casanueva, Felipe F

    2015-01-01

    Obesity and overweight are significantly involved in several reproductive pathologies contributing to infertility in men and women. In addition, several cancers of the reproductive system, such as endometrial, ovarian, breast, testicular and prostate cancers, are strongly influenced by obesity. However, the molecular mechanisms involved in the association between obesity and reproductive disorders remain unclear. Our proposal is to review the current scientific evidence regarding the effect of obesity-related factors as the core of the collective mechanisms directly and indirectly involved in the relationship between obesity and reproductive disorders, with a special and original focus on the effect of the obesity state microenvironment on the epigenetic profile as a reversible mechanistic link between obesity and the reproductive disorders. A PubMed search was performed using keywords related to obesity and adipose-related factors and epigenetics and associated with keywords related to reproduction. Full-text articles and abstracts in the English language published prior to 31 December 2013 were reviewed. The obesity state notably contributes to a reproductive dysfunction in both men and women, ranging from infertility to oncological outcomes. Several epidemiological and experimental studies demonstrate that factors secreted by the adipose tissue and gut in an obesity state can directly induce reproductive disturbances. Relevantly, these same factors are able to alter the epigenetic regulation of genes, a dynamic and reversible mechanism by which the organism responds to environmental pressures critical to the reproductive function. This review outlines the evidence showing that the association between the reproductive pathologies and obesity is not inevitable but is potentially preventable and reversible. The epigenetic marks related to obesity could constitute a therapeutic target for the reproductive disorders associated with obesity. © The Author 2014

  12. Evolution of sociality by natural selection on variances in reproductive fitness: evidence from a social bee

    OpenAIRE

    Stevens, Mark I; Hogendoorn, Katja; Schwarz, Michael P

    2007-01-01

    Abstract Background The Central Limit Theorem (CLT) is a statistical principle that states that as the number of repeated samples from any population increase, the variance among sample means will decrease and means will become more normally distributed. It has been conjectured that the CLT has the potential to provide benefits for group living in some animals via greater predictability in food acquisition, if the number of foraging bouts increases with group size. The potential existence of ...

  13. The reproductive pattern and potential of free ranging female wild boars (Sus scrofa) in Sweden.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malmsten, Anna; Jansson, Gunnar; Lundeheim, Nils; Dalin, Anne-Marie

    2017-08-01

    The number and spatial distribution of wild boars (Sus scrofa) has increased remarkably in Sweden as well as in other European countries. To understand the population dynamics of the wild boar, knowledge of its reproductive period, oestrus cycle and reproductive success is essential. The aim of this study was therefore to describe the seasonal reproductive pattern and reproductive potential of a wild boar population in Sweden. The study was based on findings from macroscopic examinations of the reproductive organs from 575 hunter-harvested female wild boars (>30 kg body weight). Samples were collected between December 2011 and December 2015 in the southern and middle parts of Sweden. The age of the sampled animals was determined and dressed weight was noted. The stage of the reproductive cycle was defined according to ovarian structures and in relation to the appearance of/and findings in the uterus. The crown-rump length (CRL) of the embryos/foetuses was used to calculate the oestrus/mating month and month for the expected farrowing. The macroscopic examination revealed a seasonal variation of reproductive stages, although cyclic and pregnant females were found in all seasons. Moreover, the estimated oestrus/mating and farrowing months based on the CRL showed that mating and farrowing may occur 'off-season'. The average litter size (no. of embryos or foetuses) per pregnant female was 5.4. Sow weight and age had significant effect on both the reproductive potential (ovulation rate and litter size) and pregnancy rate, respectively. The reproductive potential in the studied wild boar population was high compared to studies from other countries and farrowing may occur 'off-season'. This suggests that the environmental conditions in Sweden, including supplemental feeding, are favourable for wild boar reproduction.

  14. Antibiotic treatment of the tick vector Amblyomma americanum reduced reproductive fitness.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jianmin Zhong

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The lone star tick Amblyomma americanum is a common pest and vector of infectious diseases for humans and other mammals in the southern and eastern United States. A Coxiella sp. bacterial endosymbiont was highly prevalent in both laboratory-reared and field-collected A. americanum. The Coxiella sp. was demonstrated in all stages of tick and in greatest densities in nymphs and adult females, while a Rickettsia sp. was less prevalent and in lower densities when present. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We manipulated the numbers of both bacterial species in laboratory-reared A. americanum by injecting engorged nymphs or engorged, mated females with single doses of an antibiotic (rifampin or tetracycline or buffer alone. Burdens of the bacteria after molting or after oviposition were estimated by quantitative polymerase chain reaction with primers and probes specific for each bacterial species or, as an internal standard, the host tick. Post-molt adult ticks that had been treated with rifampin or tetracycline had lower numbers of the Coxiella sp. and Rickettsia sp. and generally weighed less than ticks that received buffer alone. Similarly, after oviposition, females treated previously with either antibiotic had lower burdens of both bacterial species in comparison to controls. Treatment of engorged females with either antibiotic was associated with prolonged time to oviposition, lower proportions of ticks that hatched, lower proportions of viable larvae among total larvae, and lower numbers of viable larvae per tick. These fitness estimators were associated with reduced numbers of the Coxiella sp. but not the Rickettsia sp. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: The findings indicate that the Coxiella sp. is a primary endosymbiont, perhaps provisioning the obligately hematophagous parasites with essential nutrients. The results also suggest that antibiotics could be incorporated into an integrated pest management plan for control of these and other

  15. Knockout of the Gnrh genes in zebrafish: effects on reproduction and potential compensation by reproductive and feeding-related neuropeptides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marvel, Miranda; Spicer, Olivia Smith; Wong, Ten-Tsao; Zmora, Nilli; Zohar, Yonathan

    2018-04-04

    Gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) is known as a pivotal upstream regulator of reproduction in vertebrates. However, reproduction is not compromised in the hypophysiotropic Gnrh3 knockout line in zebrafish (gnrh3-/-). In order to determine if Gnrh2, the only other Gnrh isoform in zebrafish brains, is compensating for the loss of Gnrh3, we generated a double Gnrh knockout zebrafish line. Surprisingly, the loss of both Gnrh isoforms resulted in no major impact on reproduction, indicating that a compensatory response, outside of the Gnrh system, was evoked. A plethora of factors acting along the reproductive hypothalamus-pituitary axis were evaluated as possible compensators based on neuroanatomical and differential gene expression studies. In addition, we also examined the involvement of feeding factors in the brain as potential compensators for Gnrh2, which has known anorexigenic effects. We found that the double knockout fish exhibited upregulation of several genes in the brain, specifically gonadotropin-inhibitory hormone (gnih), secretogranin 2 (scg2), tachykinin 3a (tac3a), and pituitary adenylate cyclase-activating peptide 1 (pacap1), and downregulation of agouti-related peptide 1 (agrp1), indicating the compensation occurs outside of Gnrh cells and therefore is a non-cell autonomous response to the loss of Gnrh. While the differential expression of gnih and agrp1 in the double knockout line was confined to the periventricular nucleus and hypothalamus, respectively, the upregulation of scg2 corresponded with a broader neuronal redistribution in the lateral hypothalamus and hindbrain. In conclusion, our results demonstrate the existence of a redundant reproductive regulatory system that comes into play when Gnrh2 and Gnrh3 are lost.

  16. Female reproductive potential after treatment for Hodgkin's disease

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Horning, S.J.; Hoppe, R.T.; Kaplan, H.S.; Rosenberg, S.A.

    1981-01-01

    The probability of maintaining ovarian function, becoming pregnant, and delivering a normal child is important to young women anticipating successful therapy for Hodgkin's disease. In this study, reproductive function was retrospectively examined in 103 women 40 years old or younger who had undergone treatment for Hodgkin's disease with total-lymphoid irradiation (TLI) alone, combination chemotherapy, or combined TLI and chemotherapy. Infertility was directly related to gonadal exposure to therapy and to age at treatment. Twenty women became pregnant after receiving total-nodal irradiation or combination chemotherapy or both. No fetal wastage occurred, and no birth defects were seen in the 24 infants born to these women. Even after intensive treatment programs, women successfully treated for Hodgkin's disease have become pregnant and delivered phenotypically normal children

  17. The potential for new methods to assess human reproductive genotoxicity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mendelsohn, M.L.

    1987-09-01

    The immediate prospects are not good for practical methods for measuring the human heritable mutation rate. The methods discussed here range from speculative to impractical, and at best are sensitive enough only for large numbers of subjects. Given the rapid development of DNA methods and the current status of two-dimensional gel electrophoresis, there is some hope that the intermediate prospects may be better. In contrast, the prospects for useful cellular-based male germinal methods seem more promising and immediate. Effective specific locus methods for sperm are already conceivable and may be practical in a few years. Obviously such methods will not predict heritable effects definitively, but they will provide direct information on reproductive genotoxicity and should contribute significantly to many current medical and environmental situations where genetic damage is suspected. 22 refs

  18. Complexities and potential pitfalls of clinical study design and data analysis in assisted reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patounakis, George; Hill, Micah J

    2018-06-01

    The purpose of the current review is to describe the common pitfalls in design and statistical analysis of reproductive medicine studies. It serves to guide both authors and reviewers toward reducing the incidence of spurious statistical results and erroneous conclusions. The large amount of data gathered in IVF cycles leads to problems with multiplicity, multicollinearity, and over fitting of regression models. Furthermore, the use of the word 'trend' to describe nonsignificant results has increased in recent years. Finally, methods to accurately account for female age in infertility research models are becoming more common and necessary. The pitfalls of study design and analysis reviewed provide a framework for authors and reviewers to approach clinical research in the field of reproductive medicine. By providing a more rigorous approach to study design and analysis, the literature in reproductive medicine will have more reliable conclusions that can stand the test of time.

  19. A fitting program for potential energy surfaces of bent triatomic molecules

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Searles, D.J.; Nagy-Felsobuki, E.I. von

    1992-01-01

    A program has been developed in order to fit analytical power series expansions (Dunham, Simon-Parr-Finlan, Ogilvie and their exponential variants) and Pade approximants to discrete ab initio potential energy surfaces of non-linear triatomic molecules. The program employs standard least-squares fitting techniques using the singular decomposition method in order to dampen the higher-order coefficients (if deemed necessary) without significantly degrading the fit. The program makes full use of the symmetry of a triatomic molecule and so addresses the D 3h , C 2v and C S cases. (orig.)

  20. Anopheline Reproductive Biology: Impacts on Vectorial Capacity and Potential Avenues for Malaria Control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitchell, Sara N; Catteruccia, Flaminia

    2017-12-01

    Vectorial capacity is a mathematical approximation of the efficiency of vector-borne disease transmission, measured as the number of new infections disseminated per case per day by an insect vector. Multiple elements of mosquito biology govern their vectorial capacity, including survival, population densities, feeding preferences, and vector competence. Intriguingly, biological pathways essential to mosquito reproductive fitness directly or indirectly influence a number of these elements. Here, we explore this complex interaction, focusing on how the interplay between mating and blood feeding in female Anopheles not only shapes their reproductive success but also influences their ability to sustain Plasmodium parasite development. Central to malaria transmission, mosquito reproductive biology has recently become the focus of research strategies aimed at malaria control, and we discuss promising new methods based on the manipulation of key reproductive steps. In light of widespread resistance to all public health-approved insecticides targeting mosquito reproduction may prove crucial to the success of malaria-eradication campaigns. Copyright © 2017 Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press; all rights reserved.

  1. Potential benefits of nintendo wii fit among people with multiple sclerosis: a longitudinal pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plow, Matthew; Finlayson, Marcia

    2011-01-01

    We examined the potential of Nintendo Wii Fit (Nintendo Co, Ltd, Kyoto, Japan) to increase physical activity (PA) behavior and health among people with multiple sclerosis (MS). The study consisted of a repeated-measures design with a baseline control period and involved 30 people with MS who had the ability to walk 25 feet with or without a cane (26 individuals were included in the analyses). Nintendo Wii was set up in the homes of participants, who were prescribed a Wii Fit exercise program lasting 14 weeks, 3 days a week. The Physical Activity and Disability Survey, Modified Fatigue Impact Scale, and 36-item Short Form Health Status Survey were administered three times before participants gained access to Wii Fit (control period, at 2-week intervals), and three times after they received Wii Fit (posttest 1: immediately after; posttest 2: 7 weeks after; posttest 3: 14 weeks after). Mobility, balance, strength, and weight were assessed at the first pretest, immediately prior to obtaining access to Wii Fit, and 7 weeks after obtaining access to Wii Fit. Results from the questionnaires indicated that PA significantly improved at week 7, but at week 14, PA levels declined relative to week 7 and the difference was no longer significant compared with the control period. Physical assessments indicated that balance and strength significantly improved at week 7. One adverse event was reported (repetitive knee injury). Physical assessments indicated that people with MS may be able to improve their fitness levels by using Wii Fit. Future studies should incorporate behavior change strategies to promote long-term use of Wii Fit, and explore whether individuals with more severe symptoms of MS can safely use Wii Fit.

  2. Soldiers' Preferences Regarding Sperm Preservation, Posthumous Reproduction, and Attributes of a Potential "Posthumous Mother".

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bokek-Cohen, Ya'arit; Ravitsky, Vardit

    2017-01-01

    We present study results regarding soldiers' willingness to conduct posthumous reproduction. Two hundred twelve Israeli soldiers filled in a questionnaire designed to examine their willingness to cryopreserve sperm and evaluate in which familial circumstances they would consent to posthumous reproduction. They ranked the desirability of 46 attributes of a potential mother and a life partner. Findings indicate a relatively high predisposition in favor of posthumous-assisted reproduction; the wishes of soldiers' parents had much more influence on soldiers' willingness to pursue this technology than those of a partner. Soldiers preferred "feminine" jobs for a potential mother that would allow her to dedicate herself to child-rearing. The desired traits of such a mother were rated similarly to partner preferences; however, significant differences were found in attributes that are most related to the potential mother's devotion to maternity. Interpretations of these findings are contextualized in relation to ethical and bereavement considerations.

  3. Maternal Exposure to Cadmium and Manganese Impairs Reproduction and Progeny Fitness in the Sea Urchin Paracentrotus lividus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oriana Migliaccio

    Full Text Available Metal contamination represents one of the major sources of pollution in marine environments. In this study we investigated the short-term effects of ecologically relevant cadmium and manganese concentrations (10(-6 and 3.6 x 10(-5 M, respectively on females of the sea urchin Paracentrotus lividus and their progeny, reared in the absence or presence of the metal. Cadmium is a well-known heavy metal, whereas manganese represents a potential emerging contaminant, resulting from an increased production of manganese-containing compounds. The effects of these agents were examined on both P. lividus adults and their offspring following reproductive state, morphology of embryos, nitric oxide (NO production and differential gene expression. Here, we demonstrated that both metals differentially impaired the fertilization processes of the treated female sea urchins, causing modifications in the reproductive state and also affecting NO production in the ovaries. A detailed analysis of the progeny showed a high percentage of abnormal embryos, associated to an increase in the endogenous NO levels and variations in the transcriptional expression of several genes involved in stress response, skeletogenesis, detoxification, multi drug efflux processes and NO production. Moreover, we found significant differences in the progeny from females exposed to metals and reared in metal-containing sea water compared to embryos reared in non-contaminated sea water. Overall, these results greatly expanded previous studies on the toxic effects of metals on P. lividus and provided new insights into the molecular events induced in the progeny of sea urchins exposed to metals.

  4. Genome-wide survey in African Americans demonstrates potential epistasis of fitness in the human genome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Heming; Choi, Yoonha; Tayo, Bamidele; Wang, Xuefeng; Morris, Nathan; Zhang, Xiang; Broeckel, Uli; Hanis, Craig; Kardia, Sharon; Redline, Susan; Cooper, Richard S; Tang, Hua; Zhu, Xiaofeng

    2017-02-01

    The role played by epistasis between alleles at unlinked loci in shaping population fitness has been debated for many years and the existing evidence has been mainly accumulated from model organisms. In model organisms, fitness epistasis can be systematically inferred by detecting nonindependence of genotypic values between loci in a population and confirmed through examining the number of offspring produced in two-locus genotype groups. No systematic study has been conducted to detect epistasis of fitness in humans owing to experimental constraints. In this study, we developed a novel method to detect fitness epistasis by testing the correlation between local ancestries on different chromosomes in an admixed population. We inferred local ancestry across the genome in 16,252 unrelated African Americans and systematically examined the pairwise correlations between the genomic regions on different chromosomes. Our analysis revealed a pair of genomic regions on chromosomes 4 and 6 that show significant local ancestry correlation (P-value = 4.01 × 10 -8 ) that can be potentially attributed to fitness epistasis. However, we also observed substantial local ancestry correlation that cannot be explained by systemic ancestry inference bias. To our knowledge, this study is the first to systematically examine evidence of fitness epistasis across the human genome. © 2016 WILEY PERIODICALS, INC.

  5. Trichomonas vaginalis: pathogenicity and potential role in human reproductive failure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mielczarek, Ewelina; Blaszkowska, Joanna

    2016-08-01

    Trichomonas vaginalis, which colonizes the genitourinary tract of men and women, is a sexually transmitted parasite causing symptomatic or asymptomatic trichomoniasis. The host-parasite relationship is very complex, and clinical symptoms cannot likely be attributed to a single pathogenic effect. Among the many factors responsible for interactions between T. vaginalis and host tissues, contact-dependent and contact-independent mechanisms are important in pathogenicity, as is the immune response. This review focuses on the potential virulence properties of T. vaginalis and its role in female and male infertility. It highlights the association between T. vaginalis infection and serious adverse health consequences experienced by women, including infertility, preterm birth and low-birth-weight infants. Long-term clinical observations and results of in vitro experimental studies indicate that in men, trichomoniasis has been also associated with infertility through inflammatory damage to the genitourinary tract or interference with sperm function. These results contribute significantly to improving our knowledge of the role of parasitic virulence factors in the development of infection and its role in human infertility.

  6. Sensitivity of reproductive potential to environmental factors in sheep and goats

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chemineau, P.; Terqui, M.

    1986-01-01

    Ovulation rate, embryo survival, postnatal mortality, interval from parturition to conception, age at first parturition, number of parturitions before culling, and age at culling collectively declineate the ability of a breed to cope with the local environment and management which are often harsh and suboptimal. In tropical and subtropical countries, the reproductive performance of goat and sheep is low and far from their maximum potential. Identification of the main limiting factors and determination of the breed's sensitivity to these factors are essential preliminary steps before choosing the method(s) to improve reproductive performance in such countries. (author)

  7. Does the silver moss Bryum argenteum exhibit sex-specific patterns in vegetative growth rate, asexual fitness or prezygotic reproductive investment?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horsley, Kimberly; Stark, Lloyd R; McLetchie, D Nicholas

    2011-05-01

    Expected life history trade-offs associated with sex differences in reproductive investment are often undetected in seed plants, with the difficulty arising from logistical issues of conducting controlled experiments. By controlling genotype, age and resource status of individuals, a bryophyte was assessed for sex-specific and location-specific patterns of vegetative, asexual and sexual growth/reproduction across a regional scale. Twelve genotypes (six male, six female) of the dioecious bryophyte Bryum argenteum were subcultured to remove environmental effects, regenerated asexually to replicate each genotype 16 times, and grown over a period of 92 d. Plants were assessed for growth rates, asexual and sexual reproductive traits, and allocation to above- and below-ground regenerative biomass. The degree of sexual versus asexual reproductive investment appears to be under genetic control, with three distinct ecotypes found in this study. Protonemal growth rate was positively correlated with asexual reproduction and sexual reproduction, whereas asexual reproduction was negatively correlated (appeared to trade-off) with vegetative growth (shoot production). No sex-specific trade-offs were detected. Female sex-expressing shoots were longer than males, but the sexes did not differ in growth traits, asexual traits, sexual induction times, or above- and below-ground biomass. Males, however, had much higher rates of inflorescence production than females, which translated into a significantly higher (24x) prezygotic investment for males relative to females. Evidence for three distinct ecotypes is presented for a bryophyte based on regeneration traits. Prior to zygote production, the sexes of this bryophyte did not differ in vegetative growth traits but significantly differed in reproductive investment, with the latter differences potentially implicated in the strongly biased female sex ratio. The disparity between males and females for prezygotic reproductive investment is

  8. Drone exposure to the systemic insecticide Fipronil indirectly impairs queen reproductive potential

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kairo, Guillaume; Provost, Bertille; Tchamitchian, Sylvie; Ben Abdelkader, Faten; Bonnet, Marc; Cousin, Marianne; Sénéchal, Jacques; Benet, Pauline; Kretzschmar, André; Belzunces, Luc P.; Brunet, Jean-Luc

    2016-08-01

    A species that requires sexual reproduction but cannot reproduce is doomed to extinction. The important increasing loss of species emphasizes the ecological significance of elucidating the effects of environmental stressors, such as pesticides, on reproduction. Despite its special reproductive behavior, the honey bee was selected as a relevant and integrative environmental model because of its constant and diverse exposure to many stressors due to foraging activity. The widely used insecticide Fipronil, the use of which is controversial because of its adverse effects on honey bees, was chosen to expose captive drones in hives via syrup contaminated at 0.1 μg/L and gathered by foragers. Such environmental exposure led to decreased spermatozoa concentration and sperm viability coupled with an increased sperm metabolic rate, resulting in drone fertility impairment. Subsequently, unexposed queens inseminated with such sperm exhibited fewer spermatozoa with lower viability in their spermatheca, leaving no doubt about the detrimental consequences for the reproductive potential of queens, which are key for colony sustainability. These findings suggest that pesticides could contribute to declining honey bee populations through fertility impairment, as exemplified by Fipronil. More broadly, reproductive disorders should be taken into consideration when investigating the decline of other species.

  9. Drone exposure to the systemic insecticide Fipronil indirectly impairs queen reproductive potential.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kairo, Guillaume; Provost, Bertille; Tchamitchian, Sylvie; Ben Abdelkader, Faten; Bonnet, Marc; Cousin, Marianne; Sénéchal, Jacques; Benet, Pauline; Kretzschmar, André; Belzunces, Luc P; Brunet, Jean-Luc

    2016-08-23

    A species that requires sexual reproduction but cannot reproduce is doomed to extinction. The important increasing loss of species emphasizes the ecological significance of elucidating the effects of environmental stressors, such as pesticides, on reproduction. Despite its special reproductive behavior, the honey bee was selected as a relevant and integrative environmental model because of its constant and diverse exposure to many stressors due to foraging activity. The widely used insecticide Fipronil, the use of which is controversial because of its adverse effects on honey bees, was chosen to expose captive drones in hives via syrup contaminated at 0.1 μg/L and gathered by foragers. Such environmental exposure led to decreased spermatozoa concentration and sperm viability coupled with an increased sperm metabolic rate, resulting in drone fertility impairment. Subsequently, unexposed queens inseminated with such sperm exhibited fewer spermatozoa with lower viability in their spermatheca, leaving no doubt about the detrimental consequences for the reproductive potential of queens, which are key for colony sustainability. These findings suggest that pesticides could contribute to declining honey bee populations through fertility impairment, as exemplified by Fipronil. More broadly, reproductive disorders should be taken into consideration when investigating the decline of other species.

  10. Drone exposure to the systemic insecticide Fipronil indirectly impairs queen reproductive potential

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kairo, Guillaume; Provost, Bertille; Tchamitchian, Sylvie; Ben Abdelkader, Faten; Bonnet, Marc; Cousin, Marianne; Sénéchal, Jacques; Benet, Pauline; Kretzschmar, André; Belzunces, Luc P.; Brunet, Jean-Luc

    2016-01-01

    A species that requires sexual reproduction but cannot reproduce is doomed to extinction. The important increasing loss of species emphasizes the ecological significance of elucidating the effects of environmental stressors, such as pesticides, on reproduction. Despite its special reproductive behavior, the honey bee was selected as a relevant and integrative environmental model because of its constant and diverse exposure to many stressors due to foraging activity. The widely used insecticide Fipronil, the use of which is controversial because of its adverse effects on honey bees, was chosen to expose captive drones in hives via syrup contaminated at 0.1 μg/L and gathered by foragers. Such environmental exposure led to decreased spermatozoa concentration and sperm viability coupled with an increased sperm metabolic rate, resulting in drone fertility impairment. Subsequently, unexposed queens inseminated with such sperm exhibited fewer spermatozoa with lower viability in their spermatheca, leaving no doubt about the detrimental consequences for the reproductive potential of queens, which are key for colony sustainability. These findings suggest that pesticides could contribute to declining honey bee populations through fertility impairment, as exemplified by Fipronil. More broadly, reproductive disorders should be taken into consideration when investigating the decline of other species. PMID:27549030

  11. Oxytocin--its role in male reproduction and new potential therapeutic uses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thackare, Hemlata; Nicholson, Helen D; Whittington, Kate

    2006-01-01

    Oxytocin (OT) is traditionally thought of as a "female" neurohypophysis hormone due to its role in parturition and milk ejection. However, OT is recognized as having endocrine and paracrine roles in male reproduction. At ejaculation, a burst of OT is released from the neurohypophysis into the systemic circulation and stimulates contractions of the reproductive tract aiding sperm release. There is conclusive evidence that OT is synthesized within the mammalian testis, epididymis and prostate and the presence of OT receptors (OTRs) through the reproductive tract supports a local action for this peptide. OT has a paracrine role in stimulating contractility of the seminiferous tubules, epididymis and the prostate gland. Interestingly, OT has also been shown to modulate androgen levels in these tissues via stimulation of the conversion of testosterone to dihydrotestostone (DHT) by 5alpha-reductase. The elucidation of OT's role in male reproduction has suggested a number of potential therapeutic uses for this hormone. Exogenous administration of OT has, in some cases, been shown to increase the numbers of ejaculated sperm, possibly by stimulating contractions of the reproductive tract and thus aiding sperm passage. Within the prostate, OT has been shown to affect gland growth both directly and via its interaction with androgen metabolism. Prostate pathologies due to unregulated cell proliferation/growth, such as benign prostatic hyperplasia and cancer, are unfortunately very common and few effective treatments are available. Greater understanding of paracrine growth mediators, such as OT, is likely to provide new mechanisms for treating such pathologies.

  12. Reproductive endocrine-disrupting effects of triclosan: Population exposure, present evidence and potential mechanisms

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wang, Cai-Feng; Tian, Ying

    2015-01-01

    Triclosan has been used as a broad-spectrum antibacterial agent for over 40 years worldwide. Increasing reports indicate frequent detection and broad exposure to triclosan in the natural environment and the human body. Current laboratory studies in various species provide strong evidence for its disrupting effects on the endocrine system, especially reproductive hormones. Multiple modes of action have been suggested, including disrupting hormone metabolism, displacing hormones from hormone receptors and disrupting steroidogenic enzyme activity. Although epidemiological studies on its effects in humans are mostly negative but conflicting, which is typical of much of the early evidence on the toxicity of EDCs, overall, the evidence suggests that triclosan is an EDC. This article reviews human exposure to triclosan, describes the current evidence regarding its reproductive endocrine-disrupting effects, and discusses potential mechanisms to provide insights for further study on its endocrine-disrupting effects in humans. - Highlights: • Triclosan is widely detected in human urine, blood and breast milk. • Laboratory studies suggest reproductive endocrine-disrupting effects of triclosan. • Laboratory studies suggest estrogenic properties of triclosan. • There are three potential mechanisms regarding the estrogenic effect of triclosan. • Prospective epidemiological studies on vulnerable populations are needed. - This review summarizes current evidence on human exposure to triclosan, and its reproductive endocrine-disrupting effects and potential mechanisms.

  13. On the Least-Squares Fitting of Slater-Type Orbitals with Gaussians: Reproduction of the STO-NG Fits Using Microsoft Excel and Maple

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pye, Cory C.; Mercer, Colin J.

    2012-01-01

    The symbolic algebra program Maple and the spreadsheet Microsoft Excel were used in an attempt to reproduce the Gaussian fits to a Slater-type orbital, required to construct the popular STO-NG basis sets. The successes and pitfalls encountered in such an approach are chronicled. (Contains 1 table and 3 figures.)

  14. Assessing the impact of in-utero exposures: potential effects of paracetamol on male reproductive development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kilcoyne, Karen R; Mitchell, Rod T

    2017-12-01

    Human male reproductive disorders (cryptorchidism, hypospadias, testicular cancer and low sperm counts) are common and some may be increasing in incidence worldwide. These associated disorders can arise from subnormal testosterone production during fetal life. This has resulted in a focus on in-utero environmental influences that may result in reproductive effects on the offspring in later life. Over recent years, there has been a dramatic increase in the scientific literature describing associations between in-utero environmental exposures (eg, industrial chemicals and pharmaceuticals) and subsequent reproductive outcomes in male offspring. This includes studies investigating a potential role for in-utero analgesic exposure(s) on the fetal testis; however, providing definitive evidence of such effects presents numerous challenges. In this review, we describe an approach to assessing the potential clinical relevance of in-utero (and postnatal) environmental exposures on subsequent male reproductive function using exposure to the analgesic paracetamol as an example. © Article author(s) (or their employer(s) unless otherwise stated in the text of the article) 2017. All rights reserved. No commercial use is permitted unless otherwise expressly granted.

  15. Low fertility awareness in United States reproductive-aged women and medical trainees: creation and validation of the Fertility & Infertility Treatment Knowledge Score (FIT-KS).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kudesia, Rashmi; Chernyak, Elizabeth; McAvey, Beth

    2017-10-01

    To create, validate, and use a fertility awareness survey based on current U.S. Cross-sectional study. Not applicable. Phase 1 included U.S. women ages 18-45; phase 2 included female medical students and obstetrics and gynecology trainees at two urban academic programs. Survey including demographics, the Fertility & Infertility Treatment Knowledge Score (FIT-KS) instrument, and General Nutrition Knowledge Questionnaire. Knowledge of natural fertility and infertility treatments. The FIT-KS was validated through detailed item and validity analyses. In phase 1, 127 women participated; their median age was 31 years, and 43.7% had children. Their mean FIT-KS score was 16.2 ± 3.5 (55.9% correct). In phase 2, 118 medical trainees participated; their median age was 25 years, and 12.4% had children. Their mean FIT-KS score was 18.8 ± 2.1 (64.9% correct), with year of training correlating to a higher score (r=0.40). Participant awareness regarding lifestyle factors varied, but it was particularly low regarding the effects of lubricants. The majority underestimated the spontaneous miscarriage rate and overestimated the fecundability of 40-year-old women. There was general overestimation of success rates for assisted reproductive technologies, particularly among medical trainees. The FIT-KS is validated to current U.S. data for use in both general and medical populations as a quick assessment of fertility knowledge. The knowledge gaps demonstrated in this study correlate with national trends in delayed childbearing and time to initiate treatment. For medical trainees, these results raise concerns about the quality of fertility counseling they may be able to offer patients. Greater educational outreach must be undertaken to enhance fertility awareness. Copyright © 2017 American Society for Reproductive Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Reproductive potential of male catfish treated with gel extract of Aloe ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The reproductive potential of male catfish treated with gel extract of Aloe vera plant was studied using twelve male fish weighing 500-560g.The fish were divided into 3 groups; A, B and C with four fish in each group. Group A was treated with 2% Aloe vera gel while group B was treated with 3% and Group C the control was ...

  17. Effects of exposure to short-term heat stress on male reproductive fitness in a soil arthropod.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zizzari, Z.V.; Ellers, J.

    2011-01-01

    Ambient temperature is a key environmental factor influencing a variety of aspects of the ecology and evolution of ectotherms. Reproductive traits have been suggested to be more sensitive to thermal stress than other life history traits. This study investigated the direct and indirect effects of

  18. Better Together: Association With ‘Candidatus Liberibacter Asiaticus’ Increases the Reproductive Fitness of Its Insect Vector, Diaphorina citri (Hemiptera: Liviidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pelz-Stelinski, K. S.; Killiny, N.

    2016-01-01

    The duration of the evolutionary association between a pathogen and vector can be inferred based on the strength of their mutualistic interactions. A well-adapted pathogen is likely to confer some benefit or, at a minimum, exhibit low pathogenicity toward its host vector. Coevolution of the two toward a mutually beneficial association appears to have occurred between the citrus greening disease pathogen, Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus (Las), and its insect vector, the Asian citrus psyllid, Diaphorina citri (Kuwayama). To better understand the dynamics facilitating transmission, we evaluated the effects of Las infection on the fitness of its vector. Diaphorina citri harboring Las were more fecund than their uninfected counterparts; however, their nymphal development rate and adult survival were comparatively reduced. The finite rate of population increase and net reproductive rate were both greater among Las-infected D. citri as compared with uninfected counterparts, indicating that overall population fitness of infected psyllids was improved given the greater number of offspring produced. Previous reports of transovarial transmission, in conjunction with increased fecundity and population growth rates of Las-positive D. citri found in the current investigation, suggest a long evolutionary relationship between pathogen and vector. The survival of Las-infected adult D. citri was lower compared with uninfected D. citri, which suggests that there may be a fitness trade-off in response to Las infection. A beneficial effect of a plant pathogen on vector fitness may indicate that the pathogen developed a relationship with the insect before secondarily moving to plants. PMID:27418697

  19. Evaluation of fitting functions for the representation of an O(3P)+H2 potential energy surface. I

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wagner, A.F.; Schatz, G.C.; Bowman, J.M.

    1981-01-01

    The DIM surface of Whitlock, Muckerman, and Fisher for the O( 3 P)+H 2 system is used as a test case to evaluate the usefulness of a variety of fitting functions for the representation of potential energy surfaces. Fitting functions based on LEPS, BEBO, and rotated Morse oscillator (RMO) forms are examined. Fitting procedures are developed for combining information about a small portion of the surface and the fitting function to predict where on the surface more information must be obtained to improve the accuracy of the fit. Both unbiased procedures and procedures heavily biased toward the saddle point region of the surface are investigated. Collinear quasiclassical trajectory calculations of the reaction rate constant and one and three dimensional transition state theory rate constant calculations are performed and compared for selected fits and the exact DIM test surface. Fitting functions based on BEBO and RMO forms are found to give quite accurate results

  20. A potential mate influences reproductive development in female, but not male, pine siskins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watts, Heather E; Edley, Bruce; Hahn, Thomas P

    2016-04-01

    The role of photoperiod in avian reproductive timing has been well studied, and we are increasingly recognizing the roles of other environmental cues such as social cues. However, few studies have evaluated the extent to which males and females of the same species respond similarly to the same type of cue. Moreover, previous studies have rarely examined how variation in the quality or nature of a given social cue might modulate its effect. Here, we examine the sensitivity of male and female pine siskins (Spinus pinus) to a potential mate as a stimulatory cue for gonadal recrudescence, and we investigate whether variation in the relationship between a bird and its potential mate modulates the effect of that potential mate. Birds were initially housed without opposite sex birds on a 12L:12D photoperiod with ad libitum food. After gonadal recrudescence had begun males and females were randomly paired with an opposite sex bird or housed alone. An additional group of males was paired with estradiol-implanted females. In males, these social treatments had no effect on testis length, cloacal protuberance length, luteinizing hormone (LH) levels, or testosterone levels. In females, presence of a potential mate had a significant and positive effect on ovary score, defeathering of the brood patch, and LH levels. Among paired birds, the degree of affiliation within a pair corresponded to the extent of reproductive development in females, but not males. Thus, reproductive timing in females appears to be sensitive to both the presence of a potential mate and her relationship with him. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Potential of human twin embryos generated by embryo splitting in assisted reproduction and research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noli, Laila; Ogilvie, Caroline; Khalaf, Yacoub; Ilic, Dusko

    2017-03-01

    Embryo splitting or twinning has been widely used in veterinary medicine over 20 years to generate monozygotic twins with desirable genetic characteristics. The first human embryo splitting, reported in 1993, triggered fierce ethical debate on human embryo cloning. Since Dolly the sheep was born in 1997, the international community has acknowledged the complexity of the moral arguments related to this research and has expressed concerns about the potential for reproductive cloning in humans. A number of countries have formulated bans either through laws, decrees or official statements. However, in general, these laws specifically define cloning as an embryo that is generated via nuclear transfer (NT) and do not mention embryo splitting. Only the UK includes under cloning both embryo splitting and NT in the same legislation. On the contrary, the Ethics Committee of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine does not have a major ethical objection to transferring two or more artificially created embryos with the same genome with the aim of producing a single pregnancy, stating that 'since embryo splitting has the potential to improve the efficacy of IVF treatments for infertility, research to investigate the technique is ethically acceptable'. Embryo splitting has been introduced successfully to the veterinary medicine several decades ago and today is a part of standard practice. We present here an overview of embryo splitting experiments in humans and non-human primates and discuss the potential of this technology in assisted reproduction and research. A comprehensive literature search was carried out using PUBMED and Google Scholar databases to identify studies on embryo splitting in humans and non-human primates. 'Embryo splitting' and 'embryo twinning' were used as the keywords, alone or in combination with other search phrases relevant to the topics of biology of preimplantation embryos. A very limited number of studies have been conducted in humans and non

  2. When the Seasons Don't Fit: Speedy Molt as a Routine Carry-Over Cost of Reproduction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dietz, M.W.; Rogers, K.G.; Piersma, T.

    2013-01-01

    The failure of animals to fit all life-cycle stages into an annual cycle could reduce the chances of successful breeding. In some cases, non-optimal strategies will be adopted in order to maintain the life-cycle within the scope of one year. We studied trade-offs made by a High Arctic migrant

  3. When the seasons don't fit : Speedy molt as a routine carry-over cost of reproduction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dietz, Maurine W.; Rogers, Ken G.; Piersma, Theunis

    2013-01-01

    The failure of animals to fit all life-cycle stages into an annual cycle could reduce the chances of successful breeding. In some cases, non-optimal strategies will be adopted in order to maintain the life-cycle within the scope of one year. We studied trade-offs made by a High Arctic migrant

  4. Goldfish neurokinin B: Cloning, tissue distribution, and potential role in regulating reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qi, Xin; Zhou, Wenyi; Li, Shuisheng; Liu, Yun; Ye, Gang; Liu, Xiaochun; Peng, Chun; Zhang, Yong; Lin, Haoran

    2015-09-15

    Neurokinin B (NKB) is a member of the tackykinin (TAC) family known to play a critical role in the neuroendocrine regulation of reproduction in mammals. However, its biological functions in teleosts are less clear. The aim of this study was to determine the role of NKB in fish reproduction using goldfish as a model. Two transcripts, TAC3a and TAC3b, which encode several NKBs, including NKBa-13, NKBa-10, NKBb-13, and NKBb-11, were cloned. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that NKBa-10 and NKBb-11 are closely related to mammalian NKB, while NKB-13s are more conserved in teleosts. Quantitative real-time PCR analyses in various tissues showed that TAC3a and TAC3b mRNAs were mainly expressed in the brain. In situ hybridization further detected TAC3a and TAC3b mRNAs in several regions of the brain known to be involved in the regulation of reproduction and metabolism, as well as in the neurohypophysis of the pituitary. To investigate the potential role of NKBs in reproduction, goldfish were injected intraperitoneally with synthetic NKBa-13, -10, NKBb-13, or -11 peptides and the mRNA levels of hypothalamic gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) and pituitary gonadotropin subunits were measured. NKBa-13, -10, or NKBb-13, but not -11, significantly increased hypothalamic salmon GnRH and pituitary FSHβ and LHβ mRNA levels in both female and male goldfish. Finally, ovariectomy increased, while estradiol replacement reduced, TAC3a mRNA levels without affecting TAC3b expression in the hypothalamus. These data suggest that NKBa-13, -10, and NKBb-13 play a role in mediating the estrogen negative feedback regulation of gonadotropins. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. The effect of gamma radiation on the reproductive potential of Cryptophlebia leucotreta (Meyr.)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Du Toit, W.J.

    1981-07-01

    The false codling moth has been known as a pest of citrus in South Africa. In this study the effect of gamma radiation on the reproductive potential of the male false codling moth was investigated. This serves as a basis for the application of the sterile male technique as a means of control. The influence of radiation on the following factors was investigated: the emerge and longevity of males and their ability to mate and transfer spermatophores, egg production of unirradiated females which have been mated with irradiated males and the fertility of the resulting eggs

  6. Chikungunya viral fitness measures within the vector and subsequent transmission potential.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rebecca C Christofferson

    Full Text Available Given the recent emergence of chikungunya in the Americas, the accuracy of forecasting and prediction of chikungunya transmission potential in the U.S. requires urgent assessment. The La Reunion-associated sub-lineage of chikungunya (with a valine substitution in the envelope protein was shown to increase viral fitness in the secondary vector, Ae. albopictus. Subsequently, a majority of experimental and modeling efforts focused on this combination of a sub-lineage of the East-Central-South African genotype (ECSA-V-Ae. albopictus, despite the Asian genotype being the etiologic agent of recent chikungunya outbreaks world-wide. We explore a collection of data to investigate relative transmission efficiencies of the three major genotypes/sub-lineages of chikungunya and found difference in the extrinsic incubation periods to be largely overstated. However, there is strong evidence supporting the role of Ae. albopictus in the expansion of chikungunya that our R0 calculations cannot attribute to fitness increases in one vector over another. This suggests other ecological factors associated with the Ae. albopictus-ECSA-V cycle may drive transmission intensity differences. With the apparent bias in literature, however, we are less prepared to evaluate transmission where Ae. aegypti plays a significant role. Holistic investigations of CHIKV transmission cycle(s will allow for more complete assessment of transmission risk in areas affected by either or both competent vectors.

  7. The role of IGFs and leptin in nutrition-reproduction interactions and their potential application as indicators of nutritional adequacy and predictors of reproductive performance in dairy cattle

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Blanche, Dominique

    2002-01-01

    Full text: The interaction between nutrition and reproductive activity has been described in both wild and farm animals. The lactating cow is one of the very best examples of this interaction. During lactation, the length of time spent in negative energy balance around parturition seems to be an important factor controlling the delay to return to breeding after parturition. The mechanism by which nutrition regulates the reproductive system is not fully understood in lactating dairy cows or indeed in any other situation in ruminants or mammals in general. However, to be effective, a nutritional signal should ultimately act on at least one of the 3 regulatory sites in the reproductive axis - the brain, the pituitary gland and the gonads. Nutrition is likely to involve metabolic signals that could act directly on one of these targets or it could interfere with other regulatory mechanisms such as the feedback by gonadal steroids on gonadotrophin secretion. In this presentation, we will use examples from laboratory rodents and ruminants, and from dairy cattle where they are available, to examine how IGF-1 and leptin, amongst several other blood metabolites and metabolic hormones, could be part of the link between nutrition and reproduction in the postpartum dairy cow. A number of studies have proposed a role for IGF-1 in the control of postpartum anoestrus and the framework of the current hypothesis will be presented. The role of leptin is still not clear for ruminants in general, but especially in cattle, because leptin was only recently discovered (about 6 years ago) and because a reliable radioimmunoassay for bovine leptin only became available since 1999. The possibilities and restrictions of a role for leptin in the control of reproduction by nutrition will be discussed. To conclude, we will examine the use of these two hormones as potential indicators of the adequacy of nutritional status for reproductive function and we will introduce insulin as another

  8. Permutation invariant polynomial neural network approach to fitting potential energy surfaces. II. Four-atom systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Li, Jun; Jiang, Bin; Guo, Hua, E-mail: hguo@unm.edu [Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, New Mexico 87131 (United States)

    2013-11-28

    A rigorous, general, and simple method to fit global and permutation invariant potential energy surfaces (PESs) using neural networks (NNs) is discussed. This so-called permutation invariant polynomial neural network (PIP-NN) method imposes permutation symmetry by using in its input a set of symmetry functions based on PIPs. For systems with more than three atoms, it is shown that the number of symmetry functions in the input vector needs to be larger than the number of internal coordinates in order to include both the primary and secondary invariant polynomials. This PIP-NN method is successfully demonstrated in three atom-triatomic reactive systems, resulting in full-dimensional global PESs with average errors on the order of meV. These PESs are used in full-dimensional quantum dynamical calculations.

  9. Review: MicroRNAs in assisted reproduction and their potential role in IVF failure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siristatidis, Charalampos; Vogiatzi, Paraskevi; Brachnis, Nikos; Liassidou, Aspasia; Iliodromiti, Zoe; Bettocchi, Stefano; Chrelias, Charalampos

    2015-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) have recently emerged as important regulators of gene expression stability. In the endometrium, miRNAs are involved in the dynamic changes associated with the menstrual cycle, implicated in implantation and in reproductive disorders. We performed a review in an attempt to assess the potential biological pathways linking altered miRNAs profiles with in vitro fertilisation (IVF) failure. Crucially, as miRNAs appear to have a significant role in the course of reproduction, they are excellent research candidates with the potential to enable a better understanding over the underlying molecular activities that prevent implantation and further progression of the embryo. Further steps include in-depth pathway mapping of the implantation process and the characterization of the respective miRNAs and associated links. The efficiency of any intervention should determine whether miRNA profiling could possibly be adopted in routine practice to substantially improve the diagnostic accuracy and, in parallel, the directed treatment of the next-generation IVF. Copyright © 2015 International Institute of Anticancer Research (Dr. John G. Delinassios), All rights reserved.

  10. Reproductive potential and nesting effects of Osmia rufa (syn. bicornis female (Hymenoptera: Megachilidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giejdasz Karol

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The red mason bee Osmia rufa is a solitary bee belonging to the family Megachilidae, and is prone to nest in aggregations. Each female builds a nest separately in pre-existing cavities such as holes in wood and walls or empty plant stems. This is done by successively setting the cells in a linear series. In this study, we elucidate the nesting behavior and the reproductive potential of a single O. rufa female. The reproductive potential of nesting females was evaluated after the offspring finished development. We observed that an individual female may colonize up to five nest tubes and build 5-34 cells in them (16 on an average. During the nesting time the number of cells decreased with the sequence of nest tubes colonized by one female, which built a maximum of 11 cells in the first occupied nest and 5 cells in the last (fifth nest. Our observations indicated that 40% of nesting females colonized one nest tube as compared to 7% colonizing five nest tubes. Furthermore, in subsequent nest tubes the number of cells with freshly emerged females gradually decreased which was the reverse with males. Thus, the sex ratio (proportion of male and female offspring may change during the nesting period. The female offspring predominated in the first two nesting tubes, while in the subsequent three tubes male offspring dominated. We also cataloged different causes of reduction in abundance of offspring in O. rufa females such as parasitization or problem associated with moulting.

  11. Reproductive potential of a vole pest (Arvicola scherman) in Spanish apple orchards

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Somoano, A.; Miñarro, M.; Ventura, J.

    2016-07-01

    Fossorial water voles, Arvicola scherman, feed on tree roots causing important damages in European apple orchards. Since the intensity of crop damage produced by rodents ultimately depends on their inherent capacity to increase their population, the main goal of this study was to determine the reproductive potential of the subspecies A. scherman cantabriae in apple orchards from Asturias (NW Spain), where voles breed over the whole year. Our results were compared with those reported for the subspecies A. scherman monticola from the Spanish Pyrenees (where reproduction ceases in winter). Sexual characteristics, body condition, relative age class and number of embryos were recorded from 422 females caught in apple orchards along two years. We found pregnant females all along the year, which were able to produce a high number of litters per year (7.30) although litter size was relatively moderate (first year: 3.87 embryos/female; second year: 3.63 embryos/females). The potential number of pups per female and year (first year: 28.25; second year: 26.50) was substantially higher than that reported for Pyrenean voles, what is probably related with differences in the length of the breeding season and in life histories between subspecies. In our population, the number of implanted embryos correlated positively with the body condition of the mother. Our results reveal that management efforts should not be seasonal as they used to be so far and invite to explore the physiological consequences of management practices.

  12. NTP-CERHR monograph on the potential human reproductive and developmental effects of hydroxyurea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2008-10-01

    The National Toxicology Program (NTP) Center for the Evaluation of Risks to Human Reproduction (CERHR) conducted an evaluation of the potential for hydroxyurea to cause adverse effects on reproduction and development in humans. Hydroxyurea is a drug used to treat cancer, sickle cell disease, and thalassemia. It is the only treatment for sickle cell disease in children, aside from blood transfusion and, in severe cases, hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. Hydroxyurea is FDA-approved for use in adults with sickle cell anemia to reduce the frequency of painful crises and the need for blood transfusions. Hydroxyurea may be given to children and adults with sickle cell disease for an extended period of time or for repeated cycles of therapy. Treatment with hydroxyurea is associated with known side effects such as cytotoxicity and myelosuppression, and hydroxyurea is genotoxic (can damage DNA). CERHR selected hydroxyurea for evaluation because of: its increasing use for treatment of sickle cell disease in children and adults, knowledge that it inhibits DNA synthesis and is cytotoxic, and published evidence of reproductive and developmental toxicity in rodents. The results of this evaluation are published in the NTP-CERHR Monograph on Hydroxyurea, which includes the NTP Brief and Expert Panel Report on the Reproductive and Developmental Toxicity of Hydroxyurea. Additional information related to the evaluation process, including public comments received on the draft NTP Brief and the final expert panel report, are available on the CERHR website (http:// cerhr.niehs.nih.gov/). See hydroxyurea under "CERHR Chemicals" on the homepage or go directly to http://cerhr.niehs.nih.gov/chemicals/hydroxyurea/hydroxyurea-eval.html). The NTP reached the following conclusions on the possible effects of exposure to hydroxyurea on human reproduction or development. The possible levels of concern, from lowest to highest, are negligible concern, minimal concern, some concern, concern

  13. The genetic architecture of fitness in a seed beetle: assessing the potential for indirect genetic benefits of female choice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maklakov AA

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Quantifying the amount of standing genetic variation in fitness represents an empirical challenge. Unfortunately, the shortage of detailed studies of the genetic architecture of fitness has hampered progress in several domains of evolutionary biology. One such area is the study of sexual selection. In particular, the evolution of adaptive female choice by indirect genetic benefits relies on the presence of genetic variation for fitness. Female choice by genetic benefits fall broadly into good genes (additive models and compatibility (non-additive models where the strength of selection is dictated by the genetic architecture of fitness. To characterize the genetic architecture of fitness, we employed a quantitative genetic design (the diallel cross in a population of the seed beetle Callosobruchus maculatus, which is known to exhibit post-copulatory female choice. From reciprocal crosses of inbred lines, we assayed egg production, egg-to-adult survival, and lifetime offspring production of the outbred F1 daughters (F1 productivity. Results We used the bio model to estimate six components of genetic and environmental variance in fitness. We found sizeable additive and non-additive genetic variance in F1 productivity, but lower genetic variance in egg-to-adult survival, which was strongly influenced by maternal and paternal effects. Conclusion Our results show that, in order to gain a relevant understanding of the genetic architecture of fitness, measures of offspring fitness should be inclusive and should include quantifications of offspring reproductive success. We note that our estimate of additive genetic variance in F1 productivity (CVA = 14% is sufficient to generate indirect selection on female choice. However, our results also show that the major determinant of offspring fitness is the genetic interaction between parental genomes, as indicated by large amounts of non-additive genetic variance (dominance and/or epistasis

  14. Tracing the Potential Flow of Consumer Data: A Network Analysis of Prominent Health and Fitness Apps.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grundy, Quinn; Held, Fabian P; Bero, Lisa A

    2017-06-28

    A great deal of consumer data, collected actively through consumer reporting or passively through sensors, is shared among apps. Developers increasingly allow their programs to communicate with other apps, sensors, and Web-based services, which are promoted as features to potential users. However, health apps also routinely pose risks related to information leaks, information manipulation, and loss of information. There has been less investigation into the kinds of user data that developers are likely to collect, and who might have access to it. We sought to describe how consumer data generated from mobile health apps might be distributed and reused. We also aimed to outline risks to individual privacy and security presented by this potential for aggregating and combining user data across apps. We purposively sampled prominent health and fitness apps available in the United States, Canada, and Australia Google Play and iTunes app stores in November 2015. Two independent coders extracted data from app promotional materials on app and developer characteristics, and the developer-reported collection and sharing of user data. We conducted a descriptive analysis of app, developer, and user data collection characteristics. Using structural equivalence analysis, we conducted a network analysis of sampled apps' self-reported sharing of user-generated data. We included 297 unique apps published by 231 individual developers, which requested 58 different permissions (mean 7.95, SD 6.57). We grouped apps into 222 app families on the basis of shared ownership. Analysis of self-reported data sharing revealed a network of 359 app family nodes, with one connected central component of 210 app families (58.5%). Most (143/222, 64.4%) of the sampled app families did not report sharing any data and were therefore isolated from each other and from the core network. Fifteen app families assumed more central network positions as gatekeepers on the shortest paths that data would have to

  15. Evolution of postmating reproductive isolation: measuring the fitness effects of chromosomal regions containing hybrid male sterility factors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, N A; Wu, C I

    1993-08-01

    At least six regions of the X chromosome can cause male sterility when introgressed from Drosophila mauritiana into Drosophila simulans. In this article, we present the results of the other fitness effects caused by two X-linked regions that contain hybrid male sterility factors. In both regions, females that are heterozygous for an introgression with such a sterility factor produce substantially-fewer offspring than females heterozygous for an introgression that lacks the sterility factor. Thus, the hybrid male sterility factors, or other genes nearby, have substantial effects on female productivity. In contrast, hybrid male sterility factors have little or no effect on the relative viabilities of either sex. The evolutionary implications of these findings are discussed.

  16. Fitness trade-offs in pest management and intercropping with colour: an evolutionary framework and potential application.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farkas, Timothy E

    2015-10-01

    An important modern goal of plant science research is to develop tools for agriculturalists effective at curbing yield losses to insect herbivores, but resistance evolution continuously threatens the efficacy of pest management strategies. The high-dose/refuge strategy has been employed with some success to curb pest adaptation, and has been shown to be most effective when fitness costs (fitness trade-offs) of resistance are high. Here, I use eco-evolutionary reasoning to demonstrate the general importance of fitness trade-offs for pest control, showing that strong fitness trade-offs mitigate the threat of pest adaptation, even if adaptation were to occur. I argue that novel pest management strategies evoking strong fitness trade-offs are the most likely to persist in the face of unbridled pest adaptation, and offer the manipulation of crop colours as a worked example of one potentially effective strategy against insect herbivores.

  17. Reproductive potential of silver European eels (Anguilla anguilla migrating from Vistonis Lake (Northern Aegean Sea, Greece

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. MACNAMARA

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The European eel (Anguilla anguilla, once abundant throughout much of Europe and North Africa, has recently been classified as critically endangered. Information on its biology from the eastern Mediterranean is lacking, especially in relation to spawner quality. Therefore, silver eels were sampled during their seaward spawning migration from Vistonis Lake in Greece. Characteristics linked to reproductive output and success (i.e. body size and condition, sex ratio, silvering, Anguillicola crassus infection, fecundity and oocyte diameter were examined. The lake produced large (687–1138 mm, exclusively female silver eels, 61.7% of which were infected by A. crassus. Silver eel fecundity, the first estimates from the southern part of the species range, was positively related to body length (R2 = 0.693; P < 0.001 and body weight (R2 = 0.731; P < 0.001. Fecundity did not differ between A. crassus infected and uninfected silver eels, but Greek silver eels were significantly more fecund than those in north-west Europe. The reproductive potential of Vistonis Lake silver eels and their contribution to the A. anguilla spawning stock is discussed.

  18. Sex-role reversal of a monogamous pipefish without higher potential reproductive rate in females.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sogabe, Atsushi; Yanagisawa, Yasunobu

    2007-12-07

    In monogamous animals, males are usually the predominant competitors for mates. However, a strictly monogamous pipefish Corythoichthys haematopterus exceptionally exhibits a reversed sex role. To understand why its sex role is reversed, we measured the adult sex ratio and the potential reproductive rate (PRR), two principal factors influencing the operational sex ratio (OSR), in a natural population of southern Japan. The adult sex ratio was biased towards females throughout the breeding season, but the PRR, which increased with water temperature, did not show sexual difference. We found that an alternative index of the OSR (Sf/Sm: sex ratio of 'time in') calculated from the monthly data was consistently biased towards females. The female-biased OSR associated with sex-role reversal has been reported in some polyandrous or promiscuous pipefish, but factors biasing the OSR differed between these pipefish and C. haematopterus. We concluded that the similar PRR between the sexes in C. haematopterus does not confer reproductive benefit of polygamous mating on either sex, resulting in strict monogamous mating, and its female-biased adult sex ratio promotes female-female competition for a mate, resulting in sex-role reversal.

  19. Potential rate of reproduction for some geographically separate populations of Pseudocalanus spp.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lidia Dzierzbicka-Głowacka, Andrzej Zieliński

    2004-03-01

    Full Text Available Quantitative expressions are presented describing the potential reproductive rate per individual female of Pseudocalanus spp. in several different waters (not reduced by food limitation as a function of both temperature and cephalothorax length of females (one equation for each studied region. The calculations were made for some geographically separate populations of Pseudocalanus spp. from southwest Baffin Island, Nova Scotia, Long Island Sound, Scotland, as well as the southern North Sea and its adjacent waters (e.g. the English Channel. On the basis of the findings presented in this work and from other studies, the reproductive rate was computed as the mean number of eggs per sac divided by 1.25 times the embryonic duration at the given temperature. Also computed was the amount of egg matter produced per day as a percentage of body carbon (and dry weight of female weight for all localities. The relationships for females from the southern North Sea were obtained for "viable eggs", but they should be treated with reserve. A more suitable expression describing egg production in the southern North Sea is the equation for females from the English Channel obtained here. Our assumptions and approximations appear to predict quite well the temperature-length of female dependent daily rates of egg production of well-fed females of Pseudocalanus spp. for the above waters, and we suggest that they can be used to test the hypothesis more thoroughly.

  20. Can the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology Clinic Outcome Reporting System (SART CORS) be used to accurately report clinic total reproductive potential (TRP)?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, Judy E; Hickman, Timothy N; Kinzer, Donna; Penzias, Alan S; Ball, G David; Gibbons, William E

    2012-04-01

    To assess whether total reproductive potential (TRP), the chance of a live birth from each fresh cycle (fresh cycle plus frozen transfers), could be calculated from the national Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology Clinic Outcome Reporting System (SART CORS) database and whether information not available in SART CORS resulted in significant changes to the TRP calculation. Retrospective study using SART CORS and clinic data. Three assisted reproductive technology clinics. Women undergoing ART. None. Two- and three-year TRPs for 2005 and 2006 were calculated according to patient age at cycle start by linking fresh to frozen cycles up to first live birth. Clinic records were used to adjust for (remove) frozen cycles that used more than one fresh cycle as a source of embryos and for any embryos donated to other patients or research or shipped to another facility before a live birth. TRP was higher than fresh per-cycle rates for most ages at all clinics, although accuracy was compromised when there were fewer than 20 cycles per category. Two- and 3-year TRPs differed in only 2 of 24 calculations. Adjusted TRPs differed less than three percentage points from unadjusted TRPs when volume was sufficient. Clinic TRP can be calculated from SART CORS. Data suggest that calculations of clinic TRP from the national dataset would be meaningful. Copyright © 2012 American Society for Reproductive Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. NTP-CERHR monograph on the potential human reproductive and developmental effects of bisphenol A.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shelby, Michael D

    2008-09-01

    The National Toxicology Program (NTP) Center for the Evaluation of Risks to Human Reproduction (CERHR) conducted an evaluation of the potential for bisphenol A to cause adverse effects on reproduction and development in humans. The CERHR Expert Panel on Bisphenol A completed its evaluation in August 2007. CERHR selected bisphenol A for evaluation because of the: widespread human exposure; public concern for possible health effects from human exposures; high production volume; evidence of reproductive and developmental toxicity in laboratory animal studies Bisphenol A (CAS RN: 80-05-7) is a high production volume chemical used primarily in the production of polycarbonate plastics and epoxy resins. Polycarbonate plastics are used in some food and drink containers; the resins are used as lacquers to coat metal products such as food cans, bottle tops, and water supply pipes. To a lesser extent bisphenol A is used in the production of polyester resins, polysulfone resins, polyacrylate resins, and flame retardants. In addition, bisphenol A is used in the processing of polyvinyl chloride plastic and in the recycling of thermal paper. Some polymers used in dental sealants and tooth coatings contain bisphenol A. The primary source of exposure to bisphenol A for most people is assumed to occur through the diet. While air, dust, and water (including skin contact during bathing and swimming) are other possible sources of exposure, bisphenol A in food and beverages accounts for the majority of daily human exposure. The highest estimated daily intakes of bisphenol A in the general population occur in infants and children. The results of this bisphenol A evaluation are published in an NTP-CERHR Monograph that includes the (1) NTP Brief and (2) Expert Panel Report on the Reproductive and Developmental Toxicity of Bisphenol A. Additional information related to the evaluation process, including the peer review report for the NTP Brief and public comments received on the draft NTP

  2. Biotic potential and reproductive parameters of Spodoptera eridania (Stoll (Lepidoptera, Noctuidae in the laboratory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Débora Goulart Montezano

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Biotic potential and reprodutcive parameters of Spodoptera eridania (Stoll (Lepidoptera, Noctuidae in the laboratory: This study aimed to evaluate the biotic potential and reproductive parameters of Spodoptera eridania (Stoll, 1782 under controlled conditions (25 ± 1ºC, 70 ± 10% RH and 14 hour photophase. The longevity, pre-, post- and oviposition periods, fecundity and fertility of 15 couples was evaluated. The longevity of females (10.80 days was not significantly higher than those of males (9.27 days. The mean durations of the pre, post and oviposition periods were 2.067, 0.600 and 8.133 days, respectively. The mean fecundity per female was 1,398 eggs and the mean fertility was 1,367.50 larvae. On average, females copulated 1.133 times. A strong positive correlation was observed between the number of mating and fecundity (r = 0.881, P <0.001. However a strong negative correlation was observed between the number of copulations and the duration of the pre-oviposition period (r = -0.826, P = 0.002 and longevity (r = -0.823, P = 0.001. The biotic potential of S. eridania was estimated at 1.894 x 10(25 individuals/female/year. The net reproductive rate (Ro was 560.531 times per generation and the mean generation time (T was 35.807 days. The intrinsic rate of increase (rm was 0.177, with a finite rate of increase (l of 1.193, per week

  3. The effects of forced-egg retention on the blood-feeding behavior and reproductive potential of Culex pipiens (Diptera: Culicidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Brian J; Fonseca, Dina M

    2014-07-01

    High rates of West Nile virus (WNV) transmission to humans are associated with exceptionally hot and dry summers. This is paradoxical since the eggs of Culex vectors of WNV depend on the persistence of containers with water, which decline during droughts. We examined the effects of forced-egg retention on the reproductive success of female Culex pipiens as well as behavioral responses, such as likelihood of secondary blood meals. As controls we examined the effects of female age and delayed mating. We found that early mating is essential to achieve reproductive success and, consistent with an "all-or-none" ovipositing strategy, C. pipiens females are able to retain considerable reproductive potential while searching for oviposition sites. Specifically, although forced-egg retention resulted in significant decreases in fitness, the decline was moderate for 5 weeks and most can be accounted for by increases in female age. Consequently, no females took blood more than once per gonotrophic cycle, which eliminates the possibility that heightened vectorial capacity due to multiple blood-feedings increases WNV transmission during periods of drought. Instead, our findings suggest that during droughts populations of C. pipiens have time to locate the remaining water holes, which are associated with human populations and WNV-competent bird species. Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  4. Developing alternative indices of reproductive potential for use in fisheries management : Case studies for stocks spanning an information gradient

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Marshall, C.T.; O'Brien, L.; Tomkiewicz, Jonna

    2003-01-01

    There is accumulating evidence to suggest that spawning stock biomass (SSB) may not bedirectly proportional to reproductive potential. The wide-ranging implications of this conclu-sion necessitate that it be tested for as many stocks as possible. Undertaking such tests iscomplicated by the fact...... that fish stocks vary in the amount and type of information that isavailable to estimate reproductive potential. In this review, nine stocks illustrate the range of approaches that are being taken to developing alternative indices of reproductive potential fromexisting data resources. Three stocks had...... sufficient data to reconstruct a time series of total eggproduction (TEP), whereas, the remaining stocks were limited to estimating proxies for stockreproductive potential. For some of the case studies the alternative indices explained a higheramount of recruitment variation than did SSB. Other case studies...

  5. Potential negative effects of anti-histamines on male reproductive function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mondillo, Carolina; Varela, María Luisa; Abiuso, Adriana María Belén; Vázquez, Ramiro

    2018-05-01

    Histamine (HA) is a pleiotropic biogenic amine synthesized exclusively by histidine decarboxylase (HDC) in most mammalian tissues. The literature on the role of HA within the male gonad has expanded over the last years, attracting attention to potential unexpected side-effects of anti-histamines on testicular function. In this regard, HA receptors (HRH1, HRH2 and HRH4) have been described in Leydig cells of different species, including human. Via these receptors, HA has been reported to trigger positive or negative interactions with the LH/hCG signaling pathway depending upon its concentration, thereby contributing to the local control of testicular androgen levels. It should then be considered that anti-histamines may affect testicular homeostasis by increasing or decreasing steroid production. Additionally, HRH1 and HRH2 receptors are present in peritubular and germ cells, and HRH2 antagonists have been found to negatively affect peritubular cells and reduce sperm viability. The potential negative impact of anti-histamines on male reproduction becomes even more dramatic if we consider that HA has also been associated with human sexual behavior and penile erection. What is more, although testicular mast cells are the major source of locally produced HA, recent studies have described HDC expression in macrophages, Leydig cells and germ cells, revealing the existence of multiple sources of HA within the testis. Undoubtedly, the more we learn about the testicular histaminergic system, the more opportunities there will be for rational design of drugs aimed at treating HA-related pathologies, with minimum or nule negative impact on fertility. © 2018 Society for Reproduction and Fertility.

  6. General Fit-Basis Functions and Specialized Coordinates in an Adaptive Density-Guided Approach to Potential Energy Surfaces

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Klinting, Emil Lund; Thomsen, Bo; Godtliebsen, Ian Heide

    . This results in a decreased number of single point calculations required during the potential construction. Especially the Morse-like fit-basis functions are of interest, when combined with rectilinear hybrid optimized and localized coordinates (HOLCs), which can be generated as orthogonal transformations......The overall shape of a molecular energy surface can be very different for different molecules and different vibrational coordinates. This means that the fit-basis functions used to generate an analytic representation of a potential will be met with different requirements. It is therefore worthwhile...... single point calculations when constructing the molecular potential. We therefore present a uniform framework that can handle general fit-basis functions of any type which are specified on input. This framework is implemented to suit the black-box nature of the ADGA in order to avoid arbitrary choices...

  7. Distributed approximating functional fit of the H3 ab initio potential-energy data of Liu and Siegbahn

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Frishman, A.; Hoffman, D.K.; Kouri, D.J.

    1997-01-01

    We report a distributed approximating functional (DAF) fit of the ab initio potential-energy data of Liu [J. Chem. Phys. 58, 1925 (1973)] and Siegbahn and Liu [ibid. 68, 2457 (1978)]. The DAF-fit procedure is based on a variational principle, and is systematic and general. Only two adjustable parameters occur in the DAF leading to a fit which is both accurate (to the level inherent in the input data; RMS error of 0.2765 kcal/mol) and smooth (open-quotes well-tempered,close quotes in DAF terminology). In addition, the LSTH surface of Truhlar and Horowitz based on this same data [J. Chem. Phys. 68, 2466 (1978)] is itself approximated using only the values of the LSTH surface on the same grid coordinate points as the ab initio data, and the same DAF parameters. The purpose of this exercise is to demonstrate that the DAF delivers a well-tempered approximation to a known function that closely mimics the true potential-energy surface. As is to be expected, since there is only roundoff error present in the LSTH input data, even more significant figures of fitting accuracy are obtained. The RMS error of the DAF fit, of the LSTH surface at the input points, is 0.0274 kcal/mol, and a smooth fit, accurate to better than 1cm -1 , can be obtained using more than 287 input data points. copyright 1997 American Institute of Physics

  8. Potential errors when fitting experience curves by means of spreadsheet software

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sark, W.G.J.H.M. van; Alsema, E.A.

    2010-01-01

    Progress ratios (PRs) are widely used in forecasting development of many technologies; they are derived from historical data represented in experience curves. Fitting the double logarithmic graphs is easily done with spreadsheet software like Microsoft Excel, by adding a trend line to the graph. However, it is unknown to many that these data are transformed to linear data before a fit is performed. This leads to erroneous results or a transformation bias in the PR, as we demonstrate using the experience curve for photovoltaic technology: logarithmic transformation leads to overestimates of progress ratios and underestimates of goodness of fit. Therefore, other graphing and analysis software is recommended.

  9. Genome structure and reproductive behaviour influence the evolutionary potential of a fungal phytopathogen.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guillaume Daverdin

    Full Text Available Modern agriculture favours the selection and spread of novel plant diseases. Furthermore, crop genetic resistance against pathogens is often rendered ineffective within a few years of its commercial deployment. Leptosphaeria maculans, the cause of phoma stem canker of oilseed rape, develops gene-for-gene interactions with its host plant, and has a high evolutionary potential to render ineffective novel sources of resistance in crops. Here, we established a four-year field experiment to monitor the evolution of populations confronted with the newly released Rlm7 resistance and to investigate the nature of the mutations responsible for virulence against Rlm7. A total of 2551 fungal isolates were collected from experimental crops of a Rlm7 cultivar or a cultivar without Rlm7. All isolates were phenotyped for virulence and a subset was genotyped with neutral genetic markers. Virulent isolates were investigated for molecular events at the AvrLm4-7 locus. Whilst virulent isolates were not found in neighbouring crops, their frequency had reached 36% in the experimental field after four years. An extreme diversity of independent molecular events leading to virulence was identified in populations, with large-scale Repeat Induced Point mutations or complete deletion of AvrLm4-7 being the most frequent. Our data suggest that increased mutability of fungal genes involved in the interactions with plants is directly related to their genomic environment and reproductive system. Thus, rapid allelic diversification of avirulence genes can be generated in L. maculans populations in a single field provided that large population sizes and sexual reproduction are favoured by agricultural practices.

  10. DESTAF: A database of text-mined associations for reproductive toxins potentially affecting human fertility

    KAUST Repository

    Dawe, Adam Sean; Radovanovic, Aleksandar; Kaur, Mandeep; Sagar, Sunil; Seshadri, Sundararajan Vijayaraghava; Schaefer, Ulf; Kamau, Allan; Christoffels, Alan G.; Bajic, Vladimir B.

    2012-01-01

    The Dragon Exploration System for Toxicants and Fertility (DESTAF) is a publicly available resource which enables researchers to efficiently explore both known and potentially novel information and associations in the field of reproductive toxicology. To create DESTAF we used data from the literature (including over 10. 500 PubMed abstracts), several publicly available biomedical repositories, and specialized, curated dictionaries. DESTAF has an interface designed to facilitate rapid assessment of the key associations between relevant concepts, allowing for a more in-depth exploration of information based on different gene/protein-, enzyme/metabolite-, toxin/chemical-, disease- or anatomically centric perspectives. As a special feature, DESTAF allows for the creation and initial testing of potentially new association hypotheses that suggest links between biological entities identified through the database.DESTAF, along with a PDF manual, can be found at http://cbrc.kaust.edu.sa/destaf. It is free to academic and non-commercial users and will be updated quarterly. © 2011 Elsevier Inc.

  11. The total pregnancy potential per oocyte aspiration after assisted reproduction-in how many cycles are biologically competent oocytes available?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lemmen, J G; Rodríguez, N M; Andreasen, L D

    2016-01-01

    PURPOSE: While stimulation of women prior to assisted reproduction is associated with increased success rates, the total biological pregnancy potential per stimulation cycle is rarely assessed. METHODS: Retrospective sequential cohort study of the cumulative live birth rate in 1148 first IVF/ICSI...

  12. NTP-CERHR Monograph on the Potential Human Reproductive and Developmental Effects of Di-n-Butyl Phthalate (DBP).

    Science.gov (United States)

    2003-04-01

    TThe National Toxicology Program (NTP) Center for the Evaluation of Risks to Human Reproduction (CERHR) conducted an evaluation of the potential for di-n-butyl phthalate (DBP) to cause adverse effects on reproduction and development in humans. DBP is one of 7 phthalate chemicals evaluated by the NTP CERHR Phthalates Expert Panel. These phthalates were selected for evaluation because of high production volume, extent of human exposures, use in children's products, and/or published evidence of reproductive or developmental toxicity. Unlike many phthalates, DBP is not currently used as a plasticizer in polyvinyl chloride plastics. DBP is a component of latex adhesives and is used in cosmetics and other personal care products, as a plasticizer in cellulose plastics, and as a solvent for dyes. The results of this evaluation on DBP are published in a NTP-CERHR monograph which includes: 1) the NTP Brief, 2) the Expert Panel Report on the Reproductive and Developmental Toxicity of Di-n-Butyl Phthalate, and 3) public comments received on the Expert Panel Report. As stated in the NTP Brief, the NTP reached the following conclusions regarding the possible effects of exposure to DBP on human development and reproduction. First, although DBP could possibly affect human reproduction and development if exposures are sufficiently high, the NTP concludes that there is negligible concern for reproductive toxicity in exposed adults. Second, the NTP concludes that there is minimal concern for developmental effects when pregnant women are exposed to DBP levels estimated by the panel (2-10 mug/kg body weight/day). There is no direct evidence that exposure of people to DBP adversely affects reproduction or development, but studies reviewed by the expert panel show that oral exposure to high doses of DBP (>/=100 mg/kg body weight/day) may adversely affect the prenatal and early postnatal development in rodents. Finally, based on exposure estimates in women of reproductive age, the NTP

  13. Genetic evaluation of reproductive potential in the Zatorska goose under a conservation program.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graczyk, Magdalena; Andres, Krzysztof; Kapkowska, Ewa; Szwaczkowski, Tomasz

    2018-05-01

    The aim of this study was to estimate the genetic parameters and inbreeding effect on the fertility, embryo mortality and hatchability traits in the Zatorska goose covered by the animal genetic resources conservation program. The material for this study contains information about results of hatching of 18 863 eggs from 721 dams and 168 sires, laid between 1998-2015. Genetic parameters were estimated based on the threshold animal model by the use of Restricted Maximum Likelihood and Gibbs sampling. The percentage of fertilized eggs ranged yearly between 37-80%. The percentage of embryo mortality was very low, ranging between 4.63-23.73%. The percentage of the hatched goslings from the total number of analyzed eggs was on average 33.18%, and 53.72% from fertilized eggs. On average based on both methods, the heritability estimates of the fertility, embryo mortality and hatchability reached 0.36, 0.07, 0.24 for males and 0.44, 0.11, 0.32 for females. The genetic trend had increasing tendency for fertility and hatchability and was stable for embryo mortality for both sexes. The obtained result shows that the Zatorska goose can be still maintained in the reserves of the local gene pool according to current rules and use in the local market as a breed with good reproductive potential. © 2018 Japanese Society of Animal Science.

  14. Potential errors when fitting experience curves by means of spreadsheet software

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Sark, W.G.J.H.M.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/074628526; Alsema, E.A.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/073416258

    2010-01-01

    Progress ratios (PRs) are widely used in forecasting development of many technologies; they are derived from historical data represented in experience curves. Fitting the double logarithmic graphs is easily done with spreadsheet software like Microsoft Excel, by adding a trend line to the graph.

  15. Simultaneous fitting of a potential-energy surface and its corresponding force fields using feedforward neural networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pukrittayakamee, A.; Malshe, M.; Hagan, M.; Raff, L. M.; Narulkar, R.; Bukkapatnum, S.; Komanduri, R.

    2009-04-01

    An improved neural network (NN) approach is presented for the simultaneous development of accurate potential-energy hypersurfaces and corresponding force fields that can be utilized to conduct ab initio molecular dynamics and Monte Carlo studies on gas-phase chemical reactions. The method is termed as combined function derivative approximation (CFDA). The novelty of the CFDA method lies in the fact that although the NN has only a single output neuron that represents potential energy, the network is trained in such a way that the derivatives of the NN output match the gradient of the potential-energy hypersurface. Accurate force fields can therefore be computed simply by differentiating the network. Both the computed energies and the gradients are then accurately interpolated using the NN. This approach is superior to having the gradients appear in the output layer of the NN because it greatly simplifies the required architecture of the network. The CFDA permits weighting of function fitting relative to gradient fitting. In every test that we have run on six different systems, CFDA training (without a validation set) has produced smaller out-of-sample testing error than early stopping (with a validation set) or Bayesian regularization (without a validation set). This indicates that CFDA training does a better job of preventing overfitting than the standard methods currently in use. The training data can be obtained using an empirical potential surface or any ab initio method. The accuracy and interpolation power of the method have been tested for the reaction dynamics of H+HBr using an analytical potential. The results show that the present NN training technique produces more accurate fits to both the potential-energy surface as well as the corresponding force fields than the previous methods. The fitting and interpolation accuracy is so high (rms error=1.2 cm-1) that trajectories computed on the NN potential exhibit point-by-point agreement with corresponding

  16. Endocrine regulation of the reproduction in crustaceans: Identification of potential targets for toxicants and environmental contaminants

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Mazurová, E.; Hilscherová, Klára; Triebskorn, R.; Kohler, H.R.; Maršálek, Blahoslav; Bláha, Luděk

    2008-01-01

    Roč. 63, č. 2 (2008), s. 139-150 ISSN 0006-3088 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : crustaceans * reproduction * endocrine disruption Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 0.406, year: 2008

  17. Reproductive Life Planning: Raising the Questions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morse, Jessica E; Moos, Merry-K

    2018-04-01

    Introduction Unintended pregnancy has been a concerning public health problem for decades. As we begin to understand the complexities of pregnancy intention and how women experience these pregnancies, reproductive life planning offers a paradigm shift. Methods Reproductive life planning is a patient-centered approach that places a patient's reproductive preferences-whether concrete or ambivalent-at the forefront of her clinical care. Results This process grants women and men the opportunity to consider how reproduction fits within the context of their broader lives. Within a clinical encounter, reproductive life planning allows counseling and care to be tailored to patient preferences. Discussion Although there is great potential for positive public health impacts in unintended pregnancy, contraceptive use and improved preconception health, the true benefit lies within reinforcing reproductive empowerment. Despite recommendations for universal adoption, many questions remain regarding implementation, equity and outcomes.

  18. Potential fitting biases resulting from grouping data into variable width bins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Towers, S.

    2014-01-01

    When reading peer-reviewed scientific literature describing any analysis of empirical data, it is natural and correct to proceed with the underlying assumption that experiments have made good faith efforts to ensure that their analyses yield unbiased results. However, particle physics experiments are expensive and time consuming to carry out, thus if an analysis has inherent bias (even if unintentional), much money and effort can be wasted trying to replicate or understand the results, particularly if the analysis is fundamental to our understanding of the universe. In this note we discuss the significant biases that can result from data binning schemes. As we will show, if data are binned such that they provide the best comparison to a particular (but incorrect) model, the resulting model parameter estimates when fitting to the binned data can be significantly biased, leading us to too often accept the model hypothesis when it is not in fact true. When using binned likelihood or least squares methods there is of course no a priori requirement that data bin sizes need to be constant, but we show that fitting to data grouped into variable width bins is particularly prone to produce biased results if the bin boundaries are chosen to optimize the comparison of the binned data to a wrong model. The degree of bias that can be achieved simply with variable binning can be surprisingly large. Fitting the data with an unbinned likelihood method, when possible to do so, is the best way for researchers to show that their analyses are not biased by binning effects. Failing that, equal bin widths should be employed as a cross-check of the fitting analysis whenever possible

  19. Potential fitting biases resulting from grouping data into variable width bins

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Towers, S., E-mail: smtowers@asu.edu

    2014-07-30

    When reading peer-reviewed scientific literature describing any analysis of empirical data, it is natural and correct to proceed with the underlying assumption that experiments have made good faith efforts to ensure that their analyses yield unbiased results. However, particle physics experiments are expensive and time consuming to carry out, thus if an analysis has inherent bias (even if unintentional), much money and effort can be wasted trying to replicate or understand the results, particularly if the analysis is fundamental to our understanding of the universe. In this note we discuss the significant biases that can result from data binning schemes. As we will show, if data are binned such that they provide the best comparison to a particular (but incorrect) model, the resulting model parameter estimates when fitting to the binned data can be significantly biased, leading us to too often accept the model hypothesis when it is not in fact true. When using binned likelihood or least squares methods there is of course no a priori requirement that data bin sizes need to be constant, but we show that fitting to data grouped into variable width bins is particularly prone to produce biased results if the bin boundaries are chosen to optimize the comparison of the binned data to a wrong model. The degree of bias that can be achieved simply with variable binning can be surprisingly large. Fitting the data with an unbinned likelihood method, when possible to do so, is the best way for researchers to show that their analyses are not biased by binning effects. Failing that, equal bin widths should be employed as a cross-check of the fitting analysis whenever possible.

  20. Knowledge Networking for Family Planning: The Potential for Virtual Communities of Practice to Move Forward the Global Reproductive Health Agenda

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Megan O’Brien

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available This paper highlights experience from five years of using virtual communication tools developed by the World Health Organization Department of Reproductive Health and Research (WHO/RHR and its partners in the Implementing Best Practices (IBP in Reproductive Health Initiative to help bridge the knowledge-to-practice gap among family planning and reproductive health professionals. It explores how communities of practice and virtual networks offer a unique low-cost way to convene public health practitioners around the world to share experiences. It offers examples of how communities of practice can contribute to the development and dissemination of evidence-based health information products, and explores the potential for online networking and collaboration to enhance and inform program design and management. The paper is intended to inform the reproductive health community, as well as others working in health and development, of the potential for using virtual communities of practice to work towards achieving common goals and provide some examples of their successful use.

  1. Potential influences of climate and nest structure on spotted owl reproductive success: a biophysical approach.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeremy T Rockweit

    Full Text Available Many bird species do not make their own nests; therefore, selection of existing sites that provide adequate microclimates is critical. This is particularly true for owls in north temperate climates that often nest early in the year when inclement weather is common. Spotted owls use three main types of nest structures, each of which are structurally distinct and may provide varying levels of protection to the eggs or young. We tested the hypothesis that spotted owl nest configuration influences nest microclimate using both experimental and observational data. We used a wind tunnel to estimate the convective heat transfer coefficient (h(c of eggs in 25 potential nest configurations that mimicked 2 nest types (top-cavity and platform nests, at 3 different wind speeds. We then used the estimates of h(c in a biophysical heat transfer model to estimate how long it would take unattended eggs to cool from incubation temperature (~36 °C to physiological zero temperature (PZT; ~26 °C under natural environmental conditions. Our results indicated that the structural configuration of nests influences the cooling time of the eggs inside those nests, and hence, influences the nest microclimate. Estimates of time to PZT ranged from 10.6 minutes to 33.3 minutes. Nest configurations that were most similar to platform nests always had the fastest egg cooling times, suggesting that platform nests were the least protective of those nests we tested. Our field data coupled with our experimental results suggested that nest choice is important for the reproductive success of owls during years of inclement weather or in regions characterized by inclement weather during the nesting season.

  2. Potential fitness benefits of the half-pounder life history in Klamath River steelhead

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hodge, Brian W.; Wilzbach, Peggy; Duffy, Walter G.

    2014-01-01

    Steelhead Oncorhynchus mykiss from several of the world's rivers display the half-pounder life history, a variant characterized by an amphidromous (and, less often, anadromous) return to freshwater in the year of initial ocean entry. We evaluated factors related to expression of the half-pounder life history in wild steelhead from the lower Klamath River basin, California. We also evaluated fitness consequences of the half-pounder phenotype using a simple life history model that was parameterized with our empirical data and outputs from a regional survival equation. The incidence of the half-pounder life history differed among subbasins of origin and smolt ages. Precocious maturation occurred in approximately 8% of half-pounders and was best predicted by individual length in freshwater preceding ocean entry. Adult steelhead of the half-pounder phenotype were smaller and less fecund at age than adult steelhead of the alternative (ocean contingent) phenotype. However, our data suggest that fish of the half-pounder phenotype are more likely to spawn repeatedly than are fish of the ocean contingent phenotype. Models predicted that if lifetime survivorship were equal between phenotypes, the fitness of the half-pounder phenotype would be 17–28% lower than that of the ocean contingent phenotype. To meet the condition of equal fitness between phenotypes would require that first-year ocean survival be 21–40% higher among half-pounders in freshwater than among their cohorts at sea. We concluded that continued expression of the half-pounder phenotype is favored by precocious maturation and increased survival relative to that of the ocean contingent phenotype.

  3. Is the regulation against potentially doped bodies in a fitness context socially sustainable?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thualagant, Nicole

    2015-01-01

    in an enhancement culture and, thus, in a logic of corporeal optimisation, users of the fitness centres develop different strategies in order to optimise their bodies, often with a desire for ‘more’ or ‘better’ performative health. Second, the actual policy is contradicting one of the basic values promulgated...... by the clubs offering sport for all; namely, the value of community and the sense of fellowship and shared values these clubs are believed to produce in a local community. By implementing a perspective on social sustainability this paper will explore how a focus on this particular social valorisation...

  4. Building Viable Fitness Brands: Importance of Brand Communication Strategies in Attracting Potential Health Club Members

    OpenAIRE

    Antonio S. Williams; Isabell Rhenwrick; Ben Wright; Wanyong Choi; Dae Yeon Kim; Theodore Vickey

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to empirically examine antecedents of sport consumer-based brand equity in the fitness segment of the sport industry (i.e., participatory sport). The proposed framework consisted of market-induced (e.g. word-of-mouth, electronic word-of-mouth) and organization-induced antecedents (e.g. price, place) that have been theoretically proposed, but not tested. An 18-item paper-based survey was administered to a convenience sample of health club prospects (N= 213). The q...

  5. Systemic and local anti-Mullerian hormone reflects differences in the reproduction potential of Zebu and European type cattle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stojsin-Carter, Anja; Mahboubi, Kiana; Costa, Nathalia N; Gillis, Daniel J; Carter, Timothy F; Neal, Michael S; Miranda, Moyses S; Ohashi, Otavio M; Favetta, Laura A; King, W Allan

    2016-04-01

    This study was conducted to evaluate plasma anti-Mullerian hormone (Pl AMH), follicular fluid AMH (FF AMH) and granulosa cell AMH transcript (GC AMH) levels and their relationships with reproductive parameters in two cattle subspecies, Bos taurus indicus (Zebu), and Bos taurus taurus (European type cattle). Two-dimensional ultrasound examination and serum collection were performed on Zebu, European type and crossbreed cows to determine antral follicle count (AFC), ovary diameter (OD) and Pl AMH concentration. Slaughterhouse ovaries for Zebu and European type cattle were collected to determine FF AMH concentrations, GC AMH RNA levels, AFC, oocyte number, cleavage and blastocyst rate. Additionally GC AMH receptor 2 (AMHR2) RNA level was measured for European type cattle. Relationship between AMH and reproductive parameters was found to be significantly greater in Zebu compared to European cattle. Average Pl AMH mean ± SE for Zebu and European cattle was 0.77 ± 0.09 and 0.33 ± 0.24 ng/ml respectively (p = 0.01), whereas average antral FF AMH mean ± SE for Zebu and European cattle was 4934.3 ± 568.5 and 2977.9 ± 214.1 ng/ml respectively (p cattle. Levels of GC AMHR2 RNA in European cattle were correlated to oocyte number (p = 0.01). Crossbred animals were found more similar to their maternal Zebu counterparts with respect to their Pl AMH to AFC and OD relationships. These results demonstrate that AMH reflects differences between reproduction potential of the two cattle subspecies therefore can potentially be used as a reproductive marker. Furthermore these results reinforce the importance of separately considering the genetic backgrounds of animals when collecting or interpreting bovine AMH data for reproductive performance. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. A Disorder of Menstrual Function Regularization and its Influence on a Female Reproductive Potential

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oksana Makarchuk

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Obstetric complications in women of reproductive age are often the result of puberty disorders which remain underestimated and not taken into account in pregnancy monitoring programs in such patients, leading to an increase of habitual non-carrying of pregnancy and negative obstetric effects. The objective of the research is to carry out a comprehensive multivariate assessment of the disturbances of the body adaptive processes in teenage girls, taking into account the data of anamnesis regarding the specifics of menstrual function regularization during puberty, and to determine the main factors of complicated pregnancy in this category of patients. Materials and methods. To carry out the task, 110 pregnant women with a disorder of menstrual function regularizationhave been prospectively examined (the main group; the examination was performed at the preconception stage and in the periods of 6-12, 22-24 and 32-36 weeks of pregnancy. The comparison group consisted of 30 patients with a normal menstrual cycle. In order to identify risk factors and predict complications, the odds ratio (OR and its 95% confidence interval were used. Results. Extragenital pathology plays a significant role in the formation of pathological course of puberty and obstetric complications; 87.27% ofsuch cases were demonstrated in our study. Among the disorders of the ovarian-menstrual cycle, the structural significance is characteristic to the failure of the luteal phase and anovulatory disorders (78.18% of cases. Gynaecologic pathology includes inflammatory diseases of the pelvic organs (35.45%, cervical background processes (41.66%, ovarian tumour lesions (21.81, and primary infertility(14.54%. The obtained results of the structure of pregnancy complications in patients of the main group show reproductive losses in early pregnancy (11.8%, subchorionic hematoma (28.18% and the threat of late spontaneous abortion; these data are notedthree times more often than in the

  7. Social Reproduction and College Access: Current Evidence, Context, and Potential Alternatives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Serna, Gabriel R.; Woulfe, Rebecca

    2017-01-01

    Social reproduction theory identifies schooling as a primary means for the perpetuation of the dominant class's ideologies, values, and power. The ability to access college is so closely tied to these constructs that it contributes to this dominance and marginalization. Social stratification is not only mirrored in higher education, but the…

  8. The potential of cryopreservation and reproductive technologies for animal genetic resources conservation strategies

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hiemstra, S.J.; Lende, van der T.; Woelders, H.

    2006-01-01

    This chapter focuses on ex situ conservation. An overview of the state of the art cryopreservation and reproductive technology for farm animals and fish is followed by a discussion on the implications of ex situ conservation strategies. Ex situ conservation of genetic material from livestock and

  9. Reproductive potential and nesting effects of Osmia rufa (Syn. Bicornis) female (Hymenoptera: Megachilidae)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Giejdasz, K.; Fliszkiewicz, M.; Bednářová, Andrea; Krishnan, N.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 60, č. 1 (2016), s. 75-85 ISSN 1643-4439 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : megachilidae * reproduction * nest Subject RIV: ED - Physiology Impact factor: 0.722, year: 2016 https://www.degruyter.com/view/j/jas.2016.60.issue-1/jas-2016-0003/jas-2016-0003.xml

  10. The identification of high potential archers based on fitness and motor ability variables: A Support Vector Machine approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taha, Zahari; Musa, Rabiu Muazu; P P Abdul Majeed, Anwar; Alim, Muhammad Muaz; Abdullah, Mohamad Razali

    2018-02-01

    Support Vector Machine (SVM) has been shown to be an effective learning algorithm for classification and prediction. However, the application of SVM for prediction and classification in specific sport has rarely been used to quantify/discriminate low and high-performance athletes. The present study classified and predicted high and low-potential archers from a set of fitness and motor ability variables trained on different SVMs kernel algorithms. 50 youth archers with the mean age and standard deviation of 17.0 ± 0.6 years drawn from various archery programmes completed a six arrows shooting score test. Standard fitness and ability measurements namely hand grip, vertical jump, standing broad jump, static balance, upper muscle strength and the core muscle strength were also recorded. Hierarchical agglomerative cluster analysis (HACA) was used to cluster the archers based on the performance variables tested. SVM models with linear, quadratic, cubic, fine RBF, medium RBF, as well as the coarse RBF kernel functions, were trained based on the measured performance variables. The HACA clustered the archers into high-potential archers (HPA) and low-potential archers (LPA), respectively. The linear, quadratic, cubic, as well as the medium RBF kernel functions models, demonstrated reasonably excellent classification accuracy of 97.5% and 2.5% error rate for the prediction of the HPA and the LPA. The findings of this investigation can be valuable to coaches and sports managers to recognise high potential athletes from a combination of the selected few measured fitness and motor ability performance variables examined which would consequently save cost, time and effort during talent identification programme. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Calibration of redox potential in sperm wash media and evaluation of oxidation-reduction potential values in various assisted reproductive technology culture media using MiOXSYS system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panner Selvam, M K; Henkel, R; Sharma, R; Agarwal, A

    2018-03-01

    Oxidation-reduction potential describes the balance between the oxidants and antioxidants in fluids including semen. Various artificial culture media are used in andrology and IVF laboratories for sperm preparation and to support the development of fertilized oocytes under in vitro conditions. The composition and conditions of these media are vital for optimal functioning of the gametes. Currently, there are no data on the status of redox potential of sperm processing and assisted reproduction media. The purpose of this study was to compare the oxidation-reduction potential values of the different media and to calibrate the oxidation-reduction potential values of the sperm wash medium using oxidative stress inducer cumene hydroperoxide and antioxidant ascorbic acid. Redox potential was measured in 10 different media ranging from sperm wash media, freezing media and assisted reproductive technology one-step medium to sequential media. Oxidation-reduction potential values of the sequential culture medium and one-step culture medium were lower and significantly different (p value to identify the physiological range of oxidation-reduction potential that does not have any adverse effect on normal physiological sperm function. © 2017 American Society of Andrology and European Academy of Andrology.

  12. Input vector optimization of feed-forward neural networks for fitting ab initio potential-energy databases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malshe, M.; Raff, L. M.; Hagan, M.; Bukkapatnam, S.; Komanduri, R.

    2010-05-01

    The variation in the fitting accuracy of neural networks (NNs) when used to fit databases comprising potential energies obtained from ab initio electronic structure calculations is investigated as a function of the number and nature of the elements employed in the input vector to the NN. Ab initio databases for H2O2, HONO, Si5, and H2CCHBr were employed in the investigations. These systems were chosen so as to include four-, five-, and six-body systems containing first, second, third, and fourth row elements with a wide variety of chemical bonding and whose conformations cover a wide range of structures that occur under high-energy machining conditions and in chemical reactions involving cis-trans isomerizations, six different types of two-center bond ruptures, and two different three-center dissociation reactions. The ab initio databases for these systems were obtained using density functional theory/B3LYP, MP2, and MP4 methods with extended basis sets. A total of 31 input vectors were investigated. In each case, the elements of the input vector were chosen from interatomic distances, inverse powers of the interatomic distance, three-body angles, and dihedral angles. Both redundant and nonredundant input vectors were investigated. The results show that among all the input vectors investigated, the set employed in the Z-matrix specification of the molecular configurations in the electronic structure calculations gave the lowest NN fitting accuracy for both Si5 and vinyl bromide. The underlying reason for this result appears to be the discontinuity present in the dihedral angle for planar geometries. The use of trigometric functions of the angles as input elements produced significantly improved fitting accuracy as this choice eliminates the discontinuity. The most accurate fitting was obtained when the elements of the input vector were taken to have the form Rij-n, where the Rij are the interatomic distances. When the Levenberg-Marquardt procedure was modified

  13. Reproductive potential of Spodoptera eridania (Stoll (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae in the laboratory: effect of multiple couples and the size

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Specht

    Full Text Available Abstract This study aimed to evaluate the effect of keeping three couples in the same cage, and the size of adults emerged from small, medium-sized and large pupae (278.67 mg; 333.20 mg and 381.58 mg, respectively, on the reproductive potential of S. eridania (Stoll, 1782 adults, under controlled conditions (25 ± 1 °C, 70% RH and 14 hour photophase. We evaluated the survival, number of copulations, fecundity and fertility of the adult females. The survival of females from these different pupal sizes did not differ statistically, but the survival of males from large pupae was statistically shorter than from small pupae. Fecundity differed significantly and correlated positively with size. The number of effective copulations (espematophores and fertility did not vary significantly with pupal size. Our results emphasize the importance of indicating the number of copulations and the size of the insects when reproductive parameters are compared.

  14. Reproductive potential of Spodoptera eridania (Stoll) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) in the laboratory: effect of multiple couples and the size.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Specht, A; Montezano, D G; Sosa-Gómez, D R; Paula-Moraes, S V; Roque-Specht, V F; Barros, N M

    2016-06-01

    This study aimed to evaluate the effect of keeping three couples in the same cage, and the size of adults emerged from small, medium-sized and large pupae (278.67 mg; 333.20 mg and 381.58 mg, respectively), on the reproductive potential of S. eridania (Stoll, 1782) adults, under controlled conditions (25 ± 1 °C, 70% RH and 14 hour photophase). We evaluated the survival, number of copulations, fecundity and fertility of the adult females. The survival of females from these different pupal sizes did not differ statistically, but the survival of males from large pupae was statistically shorter than from small pupae. Fecundity differed significantly and correlated positively with size. The number of effective copulations (espematophores) and fertility did not vary significantly with pupal size. Our results emphasize the importance of indicating the number of copulations and the size of the insects when reproductive parameters are compared.

  15. Potential Gains in Reproductive-Aged Life Expectancy by Eliminating Maternal Mortality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Canudas-Romo, Vladimir; Liu, L; Zimmerman, L

    2014-01-01

    Objective: We assessed the change over time in the contribution of maternal mortality to a life expectancy calculated between ages 15 and 49, or Reproductive-Aged Life Expectancy (RALE). Our goal was to estimate the increase in RALE in developed countries over the twentieth century and the hypoth......Objective: We assessed the change over time in the contribution of maternal mortality to a life expectancy calculated between ages 15 and 49, or Reproductive-Aged Life Expectancy (RALE). Our goal was to estimate the increase in RALE in developed countries over the twentieth century....... Findings: In developed countries, five years in RALE were gained over the twentieth century, of which approximately 10%, or half a year, was attributable to reductions in maternal mortality. In sub-Saharan African countries, the possible achievable gains fluctuate between 0.24 and 1.47 years, or 6% and 44...

  16. 10 CFR 26.69 - Authorization with potentially disqualifying fitness-for-duty information.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... individual by any means, including, but not limited to, the individual's self-disclosure, the suitable... review a self-disclosure and employment history from the individual that addresses the shorter period of... that the self-disclosure does not contain any previously undisclosed potentially disqualifying FFD...

  17. The potential for host switching via ecological fitting in the emerald ash borer-host plant system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cipollini, Don; Peterson, Donnie L

    2018-02-27

    The traits used by phytophagous insects to find and utilize their ancestral hosts can lead to host range expansions, generally to closely related hosts that share visual and chemical features with ancestral hosts. Host range expansions often result from ecological fitting, which is the process whereby organisms colonize and persist in novel environments, use novel resources, or form novel associations with other species because of the suites of traits that they carry at the time they encounter the novel environment. Our objective in this review is to discuss the potential and constraints on host switching via ecological fitting in emerald ash borer, Agrilus planipennis, an ecologically and economically important invasive wood boring beetle. Once thought of as an ash (Fraxinus spp.) tree specialist, recent studies have revealed a broader potential host range than was expected for this insect. We discuss the demonstrated host-use capabilities of this beetle, as well as the potential for and barriers to the adoption of additional hosts by this beetle. We place our observations in the context of biochemical mechanisms that mediate the interaction of these beetles with their host plants and discuss whether evolutionary host shifts are a possible outcome of the interaction of this insect with novel hosts.

  18. THE POTENTIAL IMPORTANCE OF BINARY EVOLUTION IN ULTRAVIOLET-OPTICAL SPECTRAL FITTING OF EARLY-TYPE GALAXIES

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li, Zhongmu; Mao, Caiyan; Chen, Li; Zhang, Qian; Li, Maocai

    2013-01-01

    Most galaxies possibly contain some binaries, and more than half of Galactic hot subdwarf stars, which are thought to be a possible origin of the UV-upturn of old stellar populations, are found in binaries. However, the effect of binary evolution has not been taken into account in most works on the spectral fitting of galaxies. This paper studies the role of binary evolution in the spectral fitting of early-type galaxies, via a stellar population synthesis model including both single and binary star populations. Spectra from ultraviolet to optical bands are fitted to determine a few galaxy parameters. The results show that the inclusion of binaries in stellar population models may lead to obvious change in the determination of some parameters of early-type galaxies and therefore it is potentially important for spectral studies. In particular, the ages of young components of composite stellar populations become much older when using binary star population models instead of single star population models. This implies that binary star population models will measure significantly different star formation histories for early-type galaxies compared to single star population models. In addition, stellar population models with binary interactions on average measure larger dust extinctions than single star population models. This suggests that when binary star population models are used, negative extinctions are possibly no longer necessary in the spectral fitting of galaxies (see previous works, e.g., Cid Fernandes et al. for comparison). Furthermore, it is shown that optical spectra have strong constraints on stellar age while UV spectra have strong constraints on binary fraction. Finally, our results suggest that binary star population models can provide new insight into the stellar properties of globular clusters

  19. Green tea proanthocyanidins cause impairment of hormone-regulated larval development and reproductive fitness via repression of juvenile hormone acid methyltransferase, insulin-like peptide and cytochrome P450 genes in Anopheles gambiae sensu stricto.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jackson M Muema

    Full Text Available Successful optimization of plant-derived compounds into control of nuisance insects would benefit from scientifically validated targets. However, the close association between the genotypic responses and physiological toxicity effects mediated by these compounds remains underexplored. In this study, we evaluated the sublethal dose effects of proanthocyanidins (PAs sourced from green tea (Camellia sinensis on life history traits of Anopheles gambiae (sensu stricto mosquitoes with an aim to unravel the probable molecular targets. Based on the induced phenotypic effects, genes selected for study targeted juvenile hormone (JH biosynthesis, signal transduction, oxidative stress response and xenobiotic detoxification in addition to vitellogenesis in females. Our findings suggest that chronic exposure of larval stages (L3/L4 to sublethal dose of 5 ppm dramatically extended larval developmental period for up to 12 days, slowed down pupation rates, induced abnormal larval-pupal intermediates and caused 100% inhibition of adult emergence. Further, females exhibited significant interference of fecundity and egg hatchability relative to controls (p < 0.001. Using reverse transcription quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR, our findings show that PA-treated larvae exhibited significant repression of AgamJHAMT (p < 0.001, AgamILP1 (p < 0.001 and AgamCYP6M2 (p < 0.001 with up-regulation of Hsp70 (p < 0.001. Females exposed as larvae demonstrated down-regulation of AgamVg (p = 0.03, AgamILP1 (p = 0.009, AgamCYP6M2 (p = 0.05 and AgamJHAMT (p = 0.02. Our findings support that C. sinensis proanthocyanidins affect important vectorial capacity components such as mosquito survival rates and reproductive fitness thus could be potentially used for controlling populations of malaria vectors.

  20. Honey Bee (Apis mellifera Queen Reproductive Potential Affects Queen Mandibular Gland Pheromone Composition and Worker Retinue Response.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juliana Rangel

    Full Text Available Reproductive division of labor is one of the defining traits of honey bees (Apis mellifera, with non-reproductive tasks being performed by workers while a single queen normally monopolizes reproduction. The decentralized organization of a honey bee colony is maintained in large part by a bouquet of queen-produced pheromones, the distribution of which is facilitated by contact among workers throughout the hive. Previous studies have shown that the developmental fate of honey bee queens is highly plastic, with queens raised from younger worker larvae exhibiting higher measures of reproductive potential compared to queens raised from older worker larvae. We investigated differences in the chemical composition of the mandibular glands and attractiveness to workers of "high-quality" queens (i.e., raised from first instar worker larvae; more queen-like and "low-quality" queens (i.e., raised from third instar worker larvae; more worker-like. We characterized the chemical profiles of the mandibular glands of high-quality queens and low-quality queens using GC-MS and used the worker retinue response as a measure of the attractiveness to workers of high-quality queens vs. low-quality queens. We found that queen quality affected the chemical profiles of mandibular gland contents differently across years, showing significant differences in the production of the queen mandibular pheromone ("QMP" components HVA and 9-HDA in 2010, but no significant differences of any glandular compound in 2012. We also found that workers were significantly more attracted to high-quality queens than to low-quality queens in 2012, possibly because of increased attractiveness of their mandibular gland chemical profiles. Our results indicate that the age at which honey bee larvae enter the "queen-specific" developmental pathway influences the chemical composition of queen mandibular glands and worker behavior. However, these changes are not consistent across years, suggesting

  1. Identification of sheep ovary genes potentially associated with off-season reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Lei; Liu, Ka; Zhao, Zongsheng; Blair, Hugh T; Zhang, Peng; Li, Daquan; Ma, Runlin Z

    2012-04-20

    Off-season reproduction is a favorable economic trait for sheep industry. Hu sheep, an indigenous Chinese sheep breed, demonstrates a higher productivity of lambs and displays year-around oestrous behavior under proper nutrition and environment. The genetic basis behind these traits, however, is not well understood. In order to identify genes associated with the off-season reproduction, we constructed a suppression subtractive hybridization (SSH) cDNA library using pooled ovary mRNAs of 6 oestrous Hu females as a tester and the pooled ovary mRNAs of 6 non-oestrous Chinese Merino females as a driver. A total of 382 resulting positive clones were obtained after the SSH. We identified 114 differentially up-regulated genes in oestrous Hu sheep by using subsequent screening and DNA sequencing, of which 8 were previously known, 93 were reported for the first time in sheep, and 13 were novel with no significant homology to any sequence in the DNA databases. Functions of the genes identified are related to cell division, signal transduction, structure, metabolism, or cell defense. To validate the results of SSH, 6 genes (Ntrk2, Ppap2b, Htra1, Nid1, Serpine2 and Foxola) were selected for conformational analysis using quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR), and two of them (Htral and Foxo1a) were verified by Northern blot. All of the 6 genes were differentially up-regulated in the ovary of oestrous Hu. It is obvious that off-season reproduction is a complex trait involving multiple genes in multiple organs. This study helps to provide a foundation for the final identification of functional genes involved in the sheep ovary. Copyright © 2012. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  2. Socially selected ornaments and fitness: Signals of fighting ability in paper wasps are positively associated with survival, reproductive success, and rank.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tibbetts, Elizabeth A; Forrest, Taylor; Vernier, Cassondra; Jinn, Judy; Madagame, Andrew

    2015-11-01

    Many animals have ornaments that mediate choice and competition in social and sexual contexts. Individuals with elaborate sexual ornaments typically have higher fitness than those with less elaborate ornaments, but less is known about whether socially selected ornaments are associated with fitness. Here, we test the relationship between fitness and facial patterns that are a socially selected signal of fighting ability in Polistes dominula wasps. We found wasps that signal higher fighting ability have larger nests, are more likely to survive harsh winters, and obtain higher dominance rank than wasps that signal lower fighting ability. In comparison, body weight was not associated with fitness. Larger wasps were dominant over smaller wasps, but showed no difference in nest size or survival. Overall, the positive relationship between wasp facial patterns and fitness indicates that receivers can obtain diverse information about a signaler's phenotypic quality by paying attention to socially selected ornaments. Therefore, there are surprisingly strong parallels between the information conveyed by socially and sexually selected signals. Similar fitness relationships in social and sexually selected signals may be one reason it can be difficult to distinguish the role of social versus sexual selection in ornament evolution. © 2015 The Author(s). Evolution © 2015 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  3. Localization of transient receptor potential ion channels in primary and motile cilia of the female murine reproductive organs

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Teilmann, Stefan C.; Byskov, Anne Grete; Pedersen, Per Amstrup

    2005-01-01

    We have examined the subcellular localization of transient receptor potential (TRP) ion channels and the potential sensory role of cilia in murine female reproductive organs using confocal laser scanning microscopy analysis on ovary and oviduct tissue sections as well as on primary cultures...... of follicular granulosa cells. We show that the Ca2+ permeable cation channel, polycystin-2, as well as polycystin-1, a receptor that forms a functional protein complex with polycystin 2, distinctively localize to primary cilia emerging from granulosa cells of antral follicles in vivo and in vitro. Both...... polycystins are localized to motile oviduct cilia and this localization is greatly increased upon ovulatory gonadotropic stimulation. Further, the Ca2+ permeable cation channel, TRP vaniloid 4 (TRPV4), localizes to a sub-population of motile cilia on the epithelial cells of the ampulla and isthmus with high...

  4. Successful survival, growth, and reproductive potential of quagga mussels in low calcium lake water: is there uncertainty of establishment risk?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Clinton J. Davis

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available The risk of quagga mussel (Dreissena rostriformis bugensis Andrusov 1897 establishment into water-bodies of the western US has expanded the geographic concern regarding the ecological and economic impacts this species will have in aquatic ecosystems. Thresholds based on calcium concentrations, an element critical for mussel growth and physiology, have been used as a primary predictor of quagga mussel establishment success to aid management decisions. We evaluated the invasion potential of quagga mussels in low calcium waters using laboratory experiments to compare the survival, growth and reproductive potential of adult mussels held for 90 days at low (9 and 12 ppm, moderate (15 to 32 ppm and high (72 ppm calcium water concentrations. In conjunction with adult experiments, veliger stage survival, growth and settlement were evaluated under similar low, moderate, and high calcium water treatments. Adult mussels survived, grew and showed reproductive potential in low calcium water (12 ppm. Veligers were also able to survive, grow and settle in low calcium water. Higher levels of natural seston biomass appeared to improve adult mussel life history performance in low calcium water. Survival curve analysis predicted that 99% adult mortality could occur in 15 ppm could have adults surviving more than a year. The results from these bioassays provide further evidence that quagga mussels have higher risk of establishment in low calcium lakes if habitats exist that have slightly elevated calcium. These results should help emphasize the vulnerability of water-body in the 12 to 15 ppm calcium range that could potentially be at risk of establishing sustainable quagga mussel populations. Furthermore, these results provide insights into the uncertainty of using a single parameter in assigning establishment risk given the complexity of variables in specific water-bodies that influence life history performance of introduced species.

  5. Successful survival, growth, and reproductive potential of quagga mussels in low calcium lake water: is there uncertainty of establishment risk?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Clinton J; Ruhmann, Emma K; Acharya, Kumud; Chandra, Sudeep; Jerde, Christopher L

    2015-01-01

    The risk of quagga mussel (Dreissena rostriformis bugensis Andrusov 1897) establishment into water-bodies of the western US has expanded the geographic concern regarding the ecological and economic impacts this species will have in aquatic ecosystems. Thresholds based on calcium concentrations, an element critical for mussel growth and physiology, have been used as a primary predictor of quagga mussel establishment success to aid management decisions. We evaluated the invasion potential of quagga mussels in low calcium waters using laboratory experiments to compare the survival, growth and reproductive potential of adult mussels held for 90 days at low (9 and 12 ppm), moderate (15 to 32 ppm) and high (72 ppm) calcium water concentrations. In conjunction with adult experiments, veliger stage survival, growth and settlement were evaluated under similar low, moderate, and high calcium water treatments. Adult mussels survived, grew and showed reproductive potential in low calcium water (12 ppm). Veligers were also able to survive, grow and settle in low calcium water. Higher levels of natural seston biomass appeared to improve adult mussel life history performance in low calcium water. Survival curve analysis predicted that 99% adult mortality could occur in 15 ppm could have adults surviving more than a year. The results from these bioassays provide further evidence that quagga mussels have higher risk of establishment in low calcium lakes if habitats exist that have slightly elevated calcium. These results should help emphasize the vulnerability of water-body in the 12 to 15 ppm calcium range that could potentially be at risk of establishing sustainable quagga mussel populations. Furthermore, these results provide insights into the uncertainty of using a single parameter in assigning establishment risk given the complexity of variables in specific water-bodies that influence life history performance of introduced species.

  6. Assessment of female reproductive endpoints in Sprague-Dawley rats developmentally exposed to Diuron: potential ovary toxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grassi, Tony Fernando; Guerra, Marina Trevisan; Perobelli, Juliana Elaine; de Toledo, Fabíola Choqueta; da Silva, Denise Salioni; De Grava Kempinas, Wilma; Barbisan, Luís Fernando

    2011-10-01

    Diuron is widely used in agriculture but its deleterious effects on the reproductive system and mammary gland are still poorly understood. This study evaluated whether early-life-stage exposure to Diuron alters puberty onset or susceptibility to mammary carcinogenesis in female Sprague-Dawley rats. Pregnant rats received basal diet or diet containing Diuron at 500, 750, and 1,250 ppm, from gestational day 12 to the end of lactation (postnatal day 21 [PND21]). After weaning, female offspring continued receiving basal diet or diet containing Diuron until PND 51. At PND 51, female Sprague-Dawley offspring received a single dose of 50 mg/kg b.w. of 7,12-dimethylbenz(a)anthracene (DMBA) for initiation of mammary carcinogenesis. The animals were sacrificed on PND 51, 75, and 226 to 233 (week 25) for mammary gland morphology, reproductive organs and tumor analysis, respectively. There were no significant differences among groups on vaginal opening, estrous cycle, mammary morphology, or carcinogenesis. However, reductions in ovary weight and corpora lutea were observed at PND 75 in the group treated with Diuron at 1,250 ppm. The findings suggesting that Diuron exposure (1,250 ppm) may have been potentially toxic to the ovaries. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  7. Application of assisted reproduction for population management in felids: the potential and reality for conservation of small cats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swanson, William F

    2006-07-01

    Assisted reproductive technology (ART), using the primary applied tools of AI, ET, and sperm and embryo cryopreservation, has been promoted over the past decades for its potential to conserve endangered wildlife, including felids. However, if the goal is efficient, consistent production of viable offspring for population management, then the 'potential' of ART has yet to become 'reality' for any non-domestic cat species. For the five small-sized felids (i.e., Brazilian ocelot, fishing cat, Pallas' cat, Arabian sand cat, black-footed cat) managed by Species Survival Plans (SSPs) in North American zoos, achieving this potential may be an absolute necessity if genetically viable captive populations are to be maintained into the next century. Modeling programs suggest that current SSP populations are not sustainable without periodic introduction of new founders and improved demographic parameters, including longer generation intervals and larger population sizes. ART provides the means to address each of these management challenges. In each small cat SSP species, fecal hormone metabolite assays and seminal analysis have proven useful for characterizing basal reproductive parameters, a necessary prerequisite to developing ART. Of the five SSP species, ART has been used to produce living offspring only in the ocelot, including after AI with frozen-thawed spermatozoa and following transfer of frozen-thawed IVF embryos. The true efficacy of these techniques, however, is still unknown. To improve the applicability of ART for population management, priorities for immediate research include further investigation of ovarian stimulation protocols, sperm and embryo cryopreservation methods, embryo culture systems, and fetal and neonatal viability following ART.

  8. Estimate of potential benefit for Europe of fitting Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) systems for pedestrian protection to passenger cars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Mervyn; Nathanson, Andrew; Wisch, Marcus

    2014-01-01

    current generation AEB systems to about €3.5 billion for a reference limit system (i.e., best performance thought technically feasible at present). Dividing these values by the number of new passenger cars registered in Europe per year gives an indication that the cost of a system per car should be less than ∼€80 to ∼€280 for it to be cost effective. The potential benefit of fitting AEB systems to cars in Europe for pedestrian protection has been estimated and the results interpreted to indicate the upper limit of cost for a system to allow it to be cost effective.

  9. Fitness Consequences of Boldness in Juvenile and Adult Largemouth Bass.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballew, Nicholas G; Mittelbach, Gary G; Scribner, Kim T

    2017-04-01

    To date, most studies investigating the relationship between personality traits and fitness have focused on a single measure of fitness (such as survival) at a specific life stage. However, many personality traits likely have multiple effects on fitness, potentially operating across different functional contexts and stages of development. Here, we address the fitness consequences of boldness, under seminatural conditions, across life stages and functional contexts in largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides). Specifically, we report the effect of boldness on (1) juvenile survivorship in an outdoor pond containing natural prey and predators and (2) adult reproductive success in three outdoor ponds across three reproductive seasons (years). Juvenile survival was negatively affected by boldness, with bolder juveniles having a lower probability of survival than shyer juveniles. In contrast, bolder adult male bass had greater reproductive success than their shyer male counterparts. Female reproductive success was not affected by boldness. These findings demonstrate that boldness can affect fitness differently across life stages. Further, boldness was highly consistent across years and significantly heritable, which suggests that boldness has a genetic component. Thus, our results support theory suggesting that fitness trade-offs across life stages may contribute to the maintenance of personality variation within populations.

  10. The effects of quantitative fecundity in the haploid stage on reproductive success and diploid fitness in the aquatic peat moss Sphagnum macrophyllum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, M G; Shaw, A J

    2016-06-01

    A major question in evolutionary biology is how mating patterns affect the fitness of offspring. However, in animals and seed plants it is virtually impossible to investigate the effects of specific gamete genotypes. In bryophytes, haploid gametophytes grow via clonal propagation and produce millions of genetically identical gametes throughout a population. The main goal of this research was to test whether gamete identity has an effect on the fitness of their diploid offspring in a population of the aquatic peat moss Sphagnum macrophyllum. We observed a heavily male-biased sex ratio in gametophyte plants (ramets) and in multilocus microsatellite genotypes (genets). There was a steeper relationship between mating success (number of different haploid mates) and fecundity (number of diploid offspring) for male genets compared with female genets. At the sporophyte level, we observed a weak effect of inbreeding on offspring fitness, but no effect of brood size (number of sporophytes per maternal ramet). Instead, the identities of the haploid male and haploid female parents were significant contributors to variance in fitness of sporophyte offspring in the population. Our results suggest that intrasexual gametophyte/gamete competition may play a role in determining mating success in this population.

  11. Estimates of reproductive potential of Greenland halibut (Reinhardtius hippoglossoides) in East Greenland based on an update of maturity status

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kennedy, James; Hedeholm, Rasmus B.; Gundersen, Agnes C.

    2014-01-01

    When estimating reproductive potential (RP), correct interpretation of the maturity status is essential. It has now become apparent the presence of vitellogenic oocytes within the ovary of Greenland halibut (Reinhardtius hippoglossoides) does not necessarily indicate they will spawn within the next...... twelve months. This has led to a revision of the interpretation of the maturity scale where fish which contain only a developing cohort (DC) of oocytes are considered immature. Comparisons were made of estimates of L50 of female Greenland halibut in East Greenland using the previous interpretation......), respectively. Combining the maturity data with abundance data of Greenland halibut in East Greenland, spawning stock biomass (SSB) and total egg production (TEP) was estimated in four quadrants between 1998 and 2012 using both the previous and current interpretation of the maturity scale. Using the new...

  12. The potential for adaptation in a natural Daphnia magna population: broad and narrow-sense heritability of net reproductive rate under Cd stress at two temperatures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Messiaen, M; Janssen, C R; Thas, O; De Schamphelaere, K A C

    2012-10-01

    The existence of genetic variability is a key element of the adaptive potential of a natural population to stress. In this study we estimated the additive and non-additive components of the genetic variability of net reproductive rate (R(0)) in a natural Daphnia magna population exposed to Cd stress at two different temperatures. To this end, life-table experiments were conducted with 20 parental and 39 offspring clonal lineages following a 2 × 2 design with Cd concentration (control vs. 3.7 μg Cd/L) and temperature (20 vs. 24 °C) as factors. Offspring lineages were obtained through inter-clonal crossing of the different parental lineages. The population mean, additive and non-additive genetic components of variation in each treatment were estimated by fitting an Animal Model to the observed R(0) values using restricted maximum likelihood estimation. From those estimates broad-sense heritabilities (H(2)), narrow-sense heritabilities (h(2)), total (CV(G)) and additive genetic coefficients of variation (CV(A)) of R(0) were calculated. The exposure to Cd imposed a considerable level of stress to the population, as shown by the fact that the population mean of R(0) exposed to Cd was significantly lower than in the control at the corresponding temperature, i.e. by 23 % at 20 °C and by 88 % at 24 °C. The latter difference indicates that increasing temperature increased the stress level imposed by Cd. The H² and CV(G) were significantly greater than 0 in all treatments, suggesting that there is a considerable degree of genetic determination of R(0) in this population and that clonal selection could rapidly lead to increasing population mean fitness under all investigated conditions. More specifically, the H² was 0.392 at 20 °C+Cd and 0.563 at 24 °C+Cd; the CV(G) was 30.0 % at 20 °C+Cd and was significantly higher (147.6 %) in the 24 °C+Cd treatment. Significant values of h(2) (= 0.23) and CV(A) (= 89.7 %) were only found in the 24 °C+Cd treatment, suggesting

  13. Aerobic Fitness and Cognitive Development: Event-Related Brain Potential and Task Performance Indices of Executive Control in Preadolescent Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hillman, Charles H.; Buck, Sarah M.; Themanson, Jason R.; Pontifex, Matthew B.; Castelli, Darla M.

    2009-01-01

    The relationship between aerobic fitness and executive control was assessed in 38 higher- and lower-fit children (M[subscript age] = 9.4 years), grouped according to their performance on a field test of aerobic capacity. Participants performed a flanker task requiring variable amounts of executive control while event-related brain potential…

  14. NMR studies of preimplantation embryo metabolism in human assisted reproductive techniques: a new biomarker for assessment of embryo implantation potential.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pudakalakatti, Shivanand M; Uppangala, Shubhashree; D'Souza, Fiona; Kalthur, Guruprasad; Kumar, Pratap; Adiga, Satish Kumar; Atreya, Hanudatta S

    2013-01-01

    There has been growing interest in understanding energy metabolism in human embryos generated using assisted reproductive techniques (ART) for improving the overall success rate of the method. Using NMR spectroscopy as a noninvasive tool, we studied human embryo metabolism to identify specific biomarkers to assess the quality of embryos for their implantation potential. The study was based on estimation of pyruvate, lactate and alanine levels in the growth medium, ISM1, used in the culture of embryos. An NMR study involving 127 embryos from 48 couples revealed that embryos transferred on Day 3 (after 72 h in vitro culture) with successful implantation (pregnancy) exhibited significantly (p < 10(-5) ) lower pyruvate/alanine ratios compared to those that failed to implant. Lactate levels in media were similar for all embryos. This implies that in addition to lactate production, successfully implanted embryos use pyruvate to produce alanine and other cellular functions. While pyruvate and alanine individually have been used as biomarkers, the present study highlights the potential of combining them to provide a single parameter that correlates strongly with implantation potential. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  15. Cell Size Influences the Reproductive Potential and Total Lifespan of the Saccharomyces cerevisiae Yeast as Revealed by the Analysis of Polyploid Strains

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Renata Zadrag-Tecza

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The total lifespan of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae may be divided into two phases: the reproductive phase, during which the cell undergoes mitosis cycles to produce successive buds, and the postreproductive phase, which extends from the last division to cell death. These phases may be regulated by a common mechanism or by distinct ones. In this paper, we proposed a more comprehensive approach to reveal the mechanisms that regulate both reproductive potential and total lifespan in cell size context. Our study was based on yeast cells, whose size was determined by increased genome copy number, ranging from haploid to tetraploid. Such experiments enabled us to test the hypertrophy hypothesis, which postulates that excessive size achieved by the cell—the hypertrophy state—is the reason preventing the cell from further proliferation. This hypothesis defines the reproductive potential value as the difference between the maximal size that a cell can reach and the threshold value, which allows a cell to undergo its first cell cycle and the rate of the cell size to increase per generation. Here, we showed that cell size has an important impact on not only the reproductive potential but also the total lifespan of this cell. Moreover, the maximal cell size value, which limits its reproduction capacity, can be regulated by different factors and differs depending on the strain ploidy. The achievement of excessive size by the cell (hypertrophic state may lead to two distinct phenomena: the cessation of reproduction without “mother” cell death and the cessation of reproduction with cell death by bursting, which has not been shown before.

  16. Investigation of the potential of optical coherence tomography (OCT) as a non-invasive diagnostic tool in reproductive medicine

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trottmann, Matthias; Homann, Christian; Leeb, R.; Doering, D.; Kuznetsova, J.; Reese, S.; Stief, C. G.; Koelle, S.; Sroka, R.

    2015-02-01

    Introduction and objective: In Europe, nearly every sixth couple in the reproductive age is involuntarily childless. In about 30%, both male and female reveal fertility problems. In about 10% of infertile men, azoospermia is the underlying cause. As conventional therapeutic options are limited, surgical testicular sperm extraction (TESE) is necessary to obtain sperms for assisted reproductive techniques. Regarding the females, up to 30% of all idiopathic infertilities are due to alterations of the uterine tube So far, no imaging technique, which does not require any labelling, is available to evaluate the male and female genital tract at a microscopic level under in vivo conditions. Thus, the aim of this study was to investigate the potential of optical coherence tomography (OCT) as a non-invasive diagnostic tool in gynaecology and andrology. Material and Methods: Tissues samples from the bovine testis, epididymis, vas deferens, ovary, oviduct (ampulla and isthmus) and uterus were obtained immediately after slaughter (14 cows aged 3 to 8 years and 14 bulls aged 3 to 6 years; breeds: Holstein- Friesian, and Deutsches Fleckvieh). Imaging was done by using the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved probe-based Niris Imaging System (Imalux, Cleveland, Ohio, USA) and the Telesto 1325 nm OCT System and Ganymede 930 nm OCT System (Thorlabs Inc., Dachau, Germany). All images obtained were compared to histological images after paraffin embedding and HE staining. Results: OCT imaging visualized the microarchitecture of the testis, epididymis, spermatic duct and the ovary, oviduct and uterus. Using the Thorlabs systems a axial resolution of approx. 5μm and lateral resolution of 8- 15μm could be achieved. Different optical tissue volumes could be visualized, which depends on the optical penetration depth of the wavelength of the system used. While the tissue volume observed by probe based Imalux-OCT is similar to the used Thorlabs systems, the optical resolution is

  17. Exposure to modern, widespread environmental endocrine disrupting chemicals and their effect on the reproductive potential of women: an overview of current epidemiological evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karwacka, Anetta; Zamkowska, Dorota; Radwan, Michał; Jurewicz, Joanna

    2017-07-31

    Growing evidence indicates that exposure to widespread, environmental contaminants called endocrine disruptors (EDCs) negatively affects animal and human reproductive health and has been linked to several diseases including infertility. This review aims to evaluate the impact of environmental exposure to endocrine disrupting chemicals [phthalates, parabens, triclosan, bisphenol A (BPA), organochlorine (PCBs) and perfluorinated (PFCs) compounds] on the reproductive potential among women, by reviewing most recently published literature. Epidemiological studies focusing on EDCs exposure and reproductive potential among women for the last 16 years were identified by a search of the PUBMED, MEDLINE, EBSCO and TOXNET literature databases. The results of the presented studies show that exposure to EDCs impacts the reproductive potential in women, measured by ovarian reserve and by assisted reproductive technology outcomes. Exposure to environmental endocrine disrupting chemicals decrease: (i) oestradiol levels (BPA); (ii) anti-Müllerian hormone concentrations (PCBs); (iii) antral follicle count (BPA, parabens, phthalates); (iv) oocyte quality (BPA, triclosan, phthalates, PCBs); (v) fertilization rate (PFCs, PCBs); (vi) implantation (BPA, phthalates, PCBs); (vii) embryo quality (triclosan, PCBs, BPA); (viii) rate of clinical pregnancy and live births (parabens, phthalates). The studies were mostly well-designed and used prospective cohorts with the exposure assessment based on the biomarker of exposure. Considering the suggested health effects, more epidemiological data is urgently needed to confirm the presented findings.

  18. Investigating Climate Change and Reproduction: Experimental Tools from Evolutionary Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oliver Y. Martin

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available It is now generally acknowledged that climate change has wide-ranging biological consequences, potentially leading to impacts on biodiversity. Environmental factors can have diverse and often strong effects on reproduction, with obvious ramifications for population fitness. Nevertheless, reproductive traits are often neglected in conservation considerations. Focusing on animals, recent progress in sexual selection and sexual conflict research suggests that reproductive costs may pose an underestimated hurdle during rapid climate change, potentially lowering adaptive potential and increasing extinction risk of certain populations. Nevertheless, regime shifts may have both negative and positive effects on reproduction, so it is important to acquire detailed experimental data. We hence present an overview of the literature reporting short-term reproductive consequences of exposure to different environmental factors. From the enormous diversity of findings, we conclude that climate change research could benefit greatly from more coordinated efforts incorporating evolutionary approaches in order to obtain cross-comparable data on how individual and population reproductive fitness respond in the long term. Therefore, we propose ideas and methods concerning future efforts dealing with reproductive consequences of climate change, in particular by highlighting the advantages of multi-generational experimental evolution experiments.

  19. Available information for estimating reproductive potential of Northwest Atlantic groundfish stocks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tomkiewicz, Jonna; Morgan, M.J.; Burnett, J.

    2003-01-01

    , possibilities for estimating stock potential egg production are constrained by scarcity of fecundity data. Data on fish condition, which can be useful in developing fecundity models, were seldom collected in earlier times, but have increased in recent decades. A data richness index, combining information about...... data quantity and quality, ranked most gadoid stocks as "data comprehensive" with a high proportion of stocks possessing some fecundity information. Flatfish stocks generally were "data moderate" owing to slightly shorter time series of data, while redfish and grenadier stocks in general were "data...

  20. The genetic architecture of fitness in a seed beetle: assessing the potential for indirect genetic benefits of female choice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bilde, T.; Friberg, U.; Maklakov, A.A.

    2008-01-01

    variance in F1 productivity, but lower genetic variance in egg-to-adult survival, which was strongly influenced by maternal and paternal effects. Conclusion Our results show that, in order to gain a relevant understanding of the genetic architecture of fitness, measures of offspring fitness should...... is the genetic interaction between parental genomes, as indicated by large amounts of non-additive genetic variance (dominance and/or epistasis) for F1 productivity. We discuss the processes that may maintain additive and non-additive genetic variance for fitness and how these relate to indirect selection...

  1. The total pregnancy potential per oocyte aspiration after assisted reproduction-in how many cycles are biologically competent oocytes available?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lemmen, J G; Rodríguez, N M; Andreasen, L D; Loft, A; Ziebe, S

    2016-07-01

    While stimulation of women prior to assisted reproduction is associated with increased success rates, the total biological pregnancy potential per stimulation cycle is rarely assessed. Retrospective sequential cohort study of the cumulative live birth rate in 1148 first IVF/ICSI-cycles and 5-year follow up of frozen embryo replacement (FER) cycles were used. Oocyte number, number of embryos transferred, and cryopreserved/thawed and transferred embryos in a FER cycle were registered for all patients. Children per oocyte and per transferred embryo and percentage of cycles with births were calculated. We obtained 9529 oocytes. Embryos (2507) were transferred in either fresh or FER cycles, resulting in 422 births and 474 live born children. Median age of the women was 32.5 years (range 20-41.5 years). In total, 34.3 % of all cycles ended with a live birth while in 65.7 % of the cycles, no oocytes were capable of developing into a child. The average number of oocytes needed per live born child after transfer of fresh and thawed embryos was 20 as only 5.0 % of oocytes aspirated in the first IVF/ICSI cycle had the competence to develop into a child. In our setting, overall 5.0 % of the oocytes in a first cycle were biologically competent and in around 2/3 of all cycles, none of the oocytes had the potential to result in the birth of a child.

  2. Neural networks vs Gaussian process regression for representing potential energy surfaces: A comparative study of fit quality and vibrational spectrum accuracy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kamath, Aditya; Vargas-Hernández, Rodrigo A.; Krems, Roman V.; Carrington, Tucker; Manzhos, Sergei

    2018-06-01

    For molecules with more than three atoms, it is difficult to fit or interpolate a potential energy surface (PES) from a small number of (usually ab initio) energies at points. Many methods have been proposed in recent decades, each claiming a set of advantages. Unfortunately, there are few comparative studies. In this paper, we compare neural networks (NNs) with Gaussian process (GP) regression. We re-fit an accurate PES of formaldehyde and compare PES errors on the entire point set used to solve the vibrational Schrödinger equation, i.e., the only error that matters in quantum dynamics calculations. We also compare the vibrational spectra computed on the underlying reference PES and the NN and GP potential surfaces. The NN and GP surfaces are constructed with exactly the same points, and the corresponding spectra are computed with the same points and the same basis. The GP fitting error is lower, and the GP spectrum is more accurate. The best NN fits to 625/1250/2500 symmetry unique potential energy points have global PES root mean square errors (RMSEs) of 6.53/2.54/0.86 cm-1, whereas the best GP surfaces have RMSE values of 3.87/1.13/0.62 cm-1, respectively. When fitting 625 symmetry unique points, the error in the first 100 vibrational levels is only 0.06 cm-1 with the best GP fit, whereas the spectrum on the best NN PES has an error of 0.22 cm-1, with respect to the spectrum computed on the reference PES. This error is reduced to about 0.01 cm-1 when fitting 2500 points with either the NN or GP. We also find that the GP surface produces a relatively accurate spectrum when obtained based on as few as 313 points.

  3. Characterisation of Anopheles gambiae heme oxygenase and metalloporphyrin feeding suggests a potential role in reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spencer, Christopher S; Yunta, Cristina; de Lima, Glauber Pacelli Gomes; Hemmings, Kay; Lian, Lu-Yun; Lycett, Gareth; Paine, Mark J I

    2018-05-03

    The mosquito Anopheles gambiae is the principal vector for malaria in sub-Saharan Africa. The ability of A. gambiae to transmit malaria is strictly related to blood feeding and digestion, which releases nutrients for oogenesis, as well as substantial amounts of highly toxic free heme. Heme degradation by heme oxygenase (HO) is a common protective mechanism, and a gene for HO exists in the An. gambiae genome HO (AgHO), although it has yet to be functionally examined. Here, we have cloned and expressed An. gambiae HO (AgHO) in E. coli. Purified recombinant AgHO bound hemin stoichiometrically to form a hemin-enzyme complex similar to other HOs, with a K D of 3.9 ± 0.6 μM; comparable to mammalian and bacterial HOs, but 7-fold lower than that of Drosophila melanogaster HO. AgHO also degraded hemin to biliverdin and released CO and iron in the presence of NADPH cytochrome P450 oxidoreductase (CPR). Optimal AgHO activity was observed at 27.5 °C and pH 7.5. To investigate effects of AgHO inhibition, adult female A. gambiae were fed heme analogues Sn- and Zn-protoporphyrins (SnPP and ZnPP), known to inhibit HO. These led to a dose dependent decrease in oviposition. Cu-protoporphyrin (CuPP), which does not inhibit HO had no effect. These results demonstrate that AgHO is a catalytically active HO and that it may play a key role in egg production in mosquitoes. It also presents a potential target for the development of compounds aimed at sterilising mosquitoes for vector control. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Influence of Bloodmeal Source on Reproductive Output of the Potential West Nile Vector, Culex theileri (Diptera: Culicidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demirci, Berna; Durmaz, Esra; Alten, Bulent

    2014-11-01

    Culex theileri Theobald (Diptera: Culicidae) has a wide Afrotropical, southern Palaearctic, northern Oriental, and European distribution. It is mainly considered as a mammophilic mosquito and also feeds on birds and serves as a vector for various zoonotic diseases including West Nile virus. Despite its broad distribution and evidence indicating that Cx. theileri is a competent vector of human and domestic animal pathogens, basic biological and ecological features of this species have not been well investigated. We evaluated the impact of bloodmeal source (human, chicken, cow, and a double bloodmeal such as human and cow or chicken and cow and mixed bloodmeals [cow, chicken, and human] via artificial feeding) on fecundity, hatching rates, developmental times, and viability from egg to adult for laboratory colonized Cx. theileri. Fecundity in mosquitoes that took a chicken bloodmeal, a double bloodmeal and mixed bloodmeals was significantly higher than in females fed on a single cow or single human blood. This is the first study about the bloodmeal sources effect on laboratory-reared Cx. theileri populations and these findings contribute to our understanding of the impact of bloodmeal source on reproduction in Cx. theileri. As it is known that Cx. theileri is a vector for West Nile virus, the potential impacts of bloodmeal source on virus transmission are discussed. © 2014 Entomological Society of America.

  5. Wildlife conservation and reproductive cloning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holt, William V; Pickard, Amanda R; Prather, Randall S

    2004-03-01

    Reproductive cloning, or the production of offspring by nuclear transfer, is often regarded as having potential for conserving endangered species of wildlife. Currently, however, low success rates for reproductive cloning limit the practical application of this technique to experimental use and proof of principle investigations. In this review, we consider how cloning may contribute to wildlife conservation strategies. The cloning of endangered mammals presents practical problems, many of which stem from the paucity of knowledge about their basic reproductive biology. However, situations may arise where resources could be targeted at recovering lost or under-represented genetic lines; these could then contribute to the future fitness of the population. Approaches of this type would be preferable to the indiscriminate generation of large numbers of identical individuals. Applying cloning technology to non-mammalian vertebrates may be more practical than attempting to use conventional reproductive technologies. As the scientific background to cloning technology was pioneered using amphibians, it may be possible to breed imminently threatened amphibians, or even restore extinct amphibian species, by the use of cloning. In this respect species with external embryonic development may have an advantage over mammals as developmental abnormalities associated with inappropriate embryonic reprogramming would not be relevant.

  6. The Potential of Established Fitness Cut-off Points for Monitoring Women with Fibromyalgia: The al-Ándalus Project.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castro-Piñero, José; Aparicio, Virginia A; Estévez-López, Fernando; Álvarez-Gallardo, Inmaculada C; Borges-Cosic, Milkana; Soriano-Maldonado, Alberto; Delgado-Fernández, Manuel; Segura-Jiménez, Víctor

    2017-05-01

    The aim of the present study was to determinate whether fitness cut-off points discriminate the severity of major fibromyalgia symptoms and health-related quality of life. Additionally, we investigated which American Colleague of Rheumatology (ACR) fibromyalgia criteria (1990 vs. modified 2010) better discriminate fibromyalgia symptomatology. A total of 488 women with fibromyalgia and 200 non-fibromyalgia (control) women participated. All participants underwent both the 1990 and the modified 2010 ACR preliminary criteria (hereinafter 1990c and m-2010c, respectively). We used fitness cut-off points (Senior Fitness Tests Battery plus handgrip strength test) to discriminate between presence and absence of fibromyalgia. Additionally, we employed several instruments to assess fibromyalgia symptoms. Fitness cut-off points discriminated between high and low levels of the main symptoms the disease in all age groups (P from fibromyalgia diagnosis and monitoring. Moreover, the effect size of the differences in symptoms between women with fibromyalgia and controls were overall larger using the m-2010c compared with the 1990c, except for the tender points count, reflecting better the polysymptomatic distress condition of fibromyalgia. © Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York.

  7. Evaluating Mind Fitness Training and Its Potential Effects on Surgical Residents' Well-Being: A Mixed Methods Pilot Study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lases, S. S.; Lombarts, M. J. M. H.; Slootweg, Irene A.; Arah, Onyebuchi A.; Pierik, E. G. J. M.; Heineman, Erik

    2016-01-01

    Residents' well-being is essential for both the individual physician and the quality of patient care they deliver. Therefore, it is important to maintain or possibly enhance residents' well-being. We investigated (i) the influence of mind fitness training (MFT) on quality of care-related well-being

  8. Evaluating Mind Fitness Training and Its Potential Effects on Surgical Residents' Well-Being : A Mixed Methods Pilot Study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lases, S. S.; Lombarts, M. J. M. H.; Slootweg, Irene A.; Arah, Onyebuchi A.; Pierik, E. G. J. M.; Heineman, Erik

    Background Residents' well-being is essential for both the individual physician and the quality of patient care they deliver. Therefore, it is important to maintain or possibly enhance residents' well-being. We investigated (i) the influence of mind fitness training (MFT) on quality of care-related

  9. The Potential of Established Fitness Cut-off Points for Monitoring Women with Fibromyalgia : The al-Ándalus Project

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Castro-Piñero, José; Aparicio, Virginia A; Estévez-López, Fernando; Álvarez-Gallardo, Inmaculada C; Borges-Cosic, Milkana; Soriano-Maldonado, Alberto; Delgado-Fernández, Manuel; Segura-Jiménez, Víctor

    2017-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to determinate whether fitness cut-off points discriminate the severity of major fibromyalgia symptoms and health-related quality of life. Additionally, we investigated which American Colleague of Rheumatology (ACR) fibromyalgia criteria (1990 vs. modified 2010)

  10. The potential reproductive, neurobehavioral and systemic effects of soluble sodium tungstate exposure in Sprague-Dawley rats

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McInturf, S.M.; Bekkedal, M.Y.V.; Wilfong, E.; Arfsten, D.; Chapman, G.; Gunasekar, P.G.

    2011-01-01

    The debate on tungsten (W) is fostered by its continuous usage in military munitions. Reports demonstrate W solubilizes in soil and can migrate into drinking water supplies and, therefore, is a potential health risk to humans. This study evaluated the reproductive, systemic and neurobehavioral effects of sodium tungstate (NaW) in rats following 70 days of daily pre-and postnatal exposure via oral gavage to 5, 62.5 and 125 mg/kg/day of NaW through mating, gestation and weaning (PND 0-20). Daily administration of NaW produced no overt evidence of toxicity and had no apparent effect on mating success or offspring physical development. Distress vocalizations were elevated in F 1 offspring from the high dose group, whereas righting reflex showed unexpected sex differences where males demonstrated faster righting than females; however, the effects were not dose-dependent. Locomotor activity was affected in both low and high-dose groups of F 1 females. Low-dose group showed increased distance traveled, more time in ambulatory movements and less time in stereotypic behavior than controls or high dose animals. The high-dose group had more time in stereotypical movements than controls, and less time resting than controls and the lowest exposure group. Maternal retrieval was not affected by NaW exposure. Tungsten analysis showed a systemic distribution of NaW in both parents and offspring, with preferential uptake within the immune organs, including the femur, spleen and thymus. Histopathological evidence suggested no severe chronic injury or loss of function in these organs. However, the heart showed histological lesions, histiocytic inflammation from minimal to mild with cardiomyocyte degeneration and necrosis in several P 0 animals of 125 mg NaW dose group. The result of this study suggests that pre and postnatal exposure to NaW may produce subtle neurobehavioral effects in offspring related to motor activity and emotionality.

  11. Effects of triclosan on hormones and reproductive axis in female Yellow River carp (Cyprinus carpio): Potential mechanisms underlying estrogen effect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Fan; Guo, Xiangmeng; Chen, Wanguang; Sun, Yaowen; Fan, Chaojie

    2017-12-01

    Triclosan (TCS), a member of the class of compounds called pharmaceutical and personal care products (PPCPs), is a broad antibacterial and antifungal agent found in a lot of consumer products. However, TCS hormone effect mechanism in teleost female fish is not clear. Female Yellow River carp (Cyprinus carpio) were exposed to 1/20, 1/10 and 1/5 LC 50 TCS (96h LC 50 of TCS to carp) under semi-static conditions for 42days. Vitellogenin (Vtg), 17β-estradiol (E 2 ), testosterone(T), estrogen receptor (Er), gonadotropin (GtH), and gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) levels were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Meanwhile, we also examined the mRNA expressions of aromatase, GtHs-β, GnRH, and Er by quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR). The results indicated that 1/5 LC 50 TCS induced Vtg in hepatopancreas of female carps by interference with the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis at multiple potential loci through three mechanisms: (a) TCS exposure enhanced the mRNA expression of hypothalamus and gonadal aromatase which converts androgens into estrogens, subsequently increasing serum concentrations of E 2 to induce Vtg in hepatopancreas; (b) TCS treatment increased GnRH and GtH-β mRNA expression and secretion, causing the disturbance of reproductive endocrine and the increase of E 2 to induce Vtg in hepatopancreas; (c) TCS exposure enhanced synthesis and secretion of Er, then it bound to Er to active Vtg synthesis. These mechanisms showed that TCS may induce Vtg production in female Yellow River carp by Er-mediated and non-Er-mediated pathways. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Demographic consequences of greater clonal than sexual reproduction in Dicentra canadensis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Chia-Hua; Miriti, Maria N; Goodell, Karen

    2016-06-01

    Clonality is a widespread life history trait in flowering plants that may be essential for population persistence, especially in environments where sexual reproduction is unpredictable. Frequent clonal reproduction, however, could hinder sexual reproduction by spatially aggregating ramets that compete with seedlings and reduce inter-genet pollination. Nevertheless, the role of clonality in relation to variable sexual reproduction in population dynamics is often overlooked. We combined population matrix models and pollination experiments to compare the demographic contributions of clonal and sexual reproduction in three Dicentra canadensis populations, one in a well-forested landscape and two in isolated forest remnants. We constructed stage-based transition matrices from 3 years of census data to evaluate annual population growth rates, λ. We used loop analysis to evaluate the relative contribution of different reproductive pathways to λ. Despite strong temporal and spatial variation in seed set, populations generally showed stable growth rates. Although we detected some pollen limitation of seed set, manipulative pollination treatments did not affect population growth rates. Clonal reproduction contributed significantly more than sexual reproduction to population growth in the forest remnants. Only at the well-forested site did sexual reproduction contribute as much as clonal reproduction to population growth. Flowering plants were more likely to transition to a smaller size class with reduced reproductive potential in the following year than similarly sized nonflowering plants, suggesting energy trade-offs between sexual and clonal reproduction at the individual level. Seed production had negligible effects on growth and tuber production of individual plants. Our results demonstrate that clonal reproduction is vital for population persistence in a system where sexual reproduction is unpredictable. The bias toward clonality may be driven by low fitness returns

  13. Cs sorption to potential host rock of low-level radioactive waste repository in Taiwan: experiments and numerical fitting study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Tsing-Hai; Chen, Chin-Lung; Ou, Lu-Yen; Wei, Yuan-Yaw; Chang, Fu-Lin; Teng, Shi-Ping

    2011-09-15

    A reliable performance assessment of radioactive waste repository depends on better knowledge of interactions between nuclides and geological substances. Numerical fitting of acquired experimental results by the surface complexation model enables us to interpret sorption behavior at molecular scale and thus to build a solid basis for simulation study. A lack of consensus on a standard set of assessment criteria (such as determination of sorption site concentration, reaction formula) during numerical fitting, on the other hand, makes lower case comparison between various studies difficult. In this study we explored the sorption of cesium to argillite by conducting experiments under different pH and solid/liquid ratio (s/l) with two specific initial Cs concentrations (100mg/L, 7.5 × 10(-4)mol/L and 0.01 mg/L, 7.5 × 10(-8)mol/L). After this, numerical fitting was performed, focusing on assessment criteria and their consequences. It was found that both ion exchange and electrostatic interactions governed Cs sorption on argillite. At higher initial Cs concentration the Cs sorption showed an increasing dependence on pH as the solid/liquid ratio was lowered. In contrast at trace Cs levels, the Cs sorption was neither s/l dependent nor pH sensitive. It is therefore proposed that ion exchange mechanism dominates Cs sorption when the concentration of surface sorption site exceeds that of Cs, whereas surface complexation is attributed to Cs uptake under alkaline environments. Numerical fitting was conducted using two different strategies to determine concentration of surface sorption sites: the clay model (based on the cation exchange capacity plus surface titration results) and the iron oxide model (where the concentration of sorption sites is proportional to the surface area of argillite). It was found that the clay model led to better fitting than the iron oxide model, which is attributed to more amenable sorption sites (two specific sorption sites along with larger site

  14. Reproductive fitness of outcrossed hybrids between transgenic broccoli (brassica oleracea) carrying the ipt transgene and conventional varieties of kale, broccoli and cauliflower

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ting, P.; Tu, Y.; Lin, C.; Chang, H.; Chen, L.; Litfu, A

    2014-01-01

    Pollens are potential carriers for genetically modified crops to transfer genetic materials horizontally to other plants. For phanerogams, pollen viability and cross-compatibility are critical factors for successful outcross hybridization. To evaluate this possibility, this project investigated pollen viability and pod setting rate by comparing broccoli (Brassica oleracea L. var. italica Planck) and broccoli transformed with the isopentenyl transferase (ipt) gene. Both served as pollen donors and four other varieties as pollen receptors to determine outcross rates. For pollen viability, F1 progeny was higher (p?0.05) for the cross of transgenic ipt broccoli with Li Syue significantly by FDA (fluorescein diacetate) assay. Higher successful hybrids were observed for transgenic ipt broccoli with Fu Yue, Li Syue and Green King. As pollen properties, number and grain diameter were significantly larger (p?0.05) in hybrid combinations of transgenic ipt broccoli with Li Syue and Green King significantly (p?0.05). The pod setting rates were higher while transgenic ipt broccoli served as donor plant. These results analyzing pollen properties between transgenic crops with possible outcross candidates would serve as one of those critical strategies for evaluating environmental biosafety issues for transgenic crops. (author)

  15. Oryzias melastigma - an effective substitute for exotic larvicidal fishes: enhancement of its reproductive potential by supplementary feeding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dutta, Abir Lal; Dey, Sajal Kumar; Chakraborty, Debargha; Manna, Asim Kumar; Manna, Pankaj Kumar

    2013-12-01

    A preliminary study was conducted on the efficacy of Oryzias melastigma in consuming mosquito larva so as to control mosquito and mosquito borne diseases, and enhancing its reproductive success using supplementary feed. Oryzias melastigma is a larvivore fish and widely distributed in the shallow water, wetlands of Gangetic plains and peninsular India. These studies indicate that O. melastigma is a prolific breeder and gregarious feeder of mosquito larvae. Increased reproduction by providing different supplementary feed, of which Ulothrix acted remarkably, may aid in wide spread use of this fish as a biological control measure against mosquitoes. One adult fish of any sex can consume 87.1% first instars mosquito larvae/day. So, early stages of mosquito larvae are effectively controlled, as compared to other successive stages. Ulothrix has considerable effect on egg production, successful hatching and regaining reproductive maturity of female in surprisingly quicker interval.

  16. Physical Fitness Measures as Potential Markers of Low Cognitive Function in Japanese Community-Dwelling Older Adults without Apparent Cognitive Problems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kenji Narazaki, Eri Matsuo, Takanori Honda, Yu Nofuji, Koji Yonemoto, Shuzo Kumagai

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Detecting signs of cognitive impairment as early as possible is one of the most urgent challenges in preventive care of dementia. It has still been unclear whether physical fitness measures can serve as markers of low cognitive function, a sign of cognitive impairment, in older people free from dementia. The aim of the present study was to examine an association between each of five physical fitness measures and global cognition in Japanese community-dwelling older adults without apparent cognitive problems. The baseline research of the Sasaguri Genkimon Study was conducted from May to August 2011 in Sasaguri town, Fukuoka, Japan. Of the 2,629 baseline subjects who were aged 65 years or older and not certified as individuals requiring nursing care by the town, 1,552 participants without apparent cognitive problems (Mini-Mental State Examination score ≥24 were involved in the present study (59.0% of the baseline subjects, median age: 72 years, men: 40.1%. Global cognitive function was measured by the Japanese version of the Montreal Cognitive Assessment. Handgrip strength, leg strength, sit-to-stand rate, gait speed, and one-leg stand time were examined as physical fitness measures. In multiple linear regression analyses, each of the five physical fitness measures was positively associated with the Montreal Cognitive Assessment score after adjusting for age and sex (p < 0.001. These associations were preserved after additional adjustment for years of formal education, body mass index, and other confounding factors (p < 0.001. The present study first demonstrated the associations between multiple aspects of physical fitness and global cognitive function in Japanese community-dwelling older people without apparent cognitive problems. These results suggest that each of the physical fitness measures has a potential as a single marker of low cognitive function in older populations free from dementia and thereby can be useful in community

  17. Life span and reproductive cost explain interspecific variation in the optimal onset of reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mourocq, Emeline; Bize, Pierre; Bouwhuis, Sandra; Bradley, Russell; Charmantier, Anne; de la Cruz, Carlos; Drobniak, Szymon M; Espie, Richard H M; Herényi, Márton; Hötker, Hermann; Krüger, Oliver; Marzluff, John; Møller, Anders P; Nakagawa, Shinichi; Phillips, Richard A; Radford, Andrew N; Roulin, Alexandre; Török, János; Valencia, Juliana; van de Pol, Martijn; Warkentin, Ian G; Winney, Isabel S; Wood, Andrew G; Griesser, Michael

    2016-02-01

    Fitness can be profoundly influenced by the age at first reproduction (AFR), but to date the AFR-fitness relationship only has been investigated intraspecifically. Here, we investigated the relationship between AFR and average lifetime reproductive success (LRS) across 34 bird species. We assessed differences in the deviation of the Optimal AFR (i.e., the species-specific AFR associated with the highest LRS) from the age at sexual maturity, considering potential effects of life history as well as social and ecological factors. Most individuals adopted the species-specific Optimal AFR and both the mean and Optimal AFR of species correlated positively with life span. Interspecific deviations of the Optimal AFR were associated with indices reflecting a change in LRS or survival as a function of AFR: a delayed AFR was beneficial in species where early AFR was associated with a decrease in subsequent survival or reproductive output. Overall, our results suggest that a delayed onset of reproduction beyond maturity is an optimal strategy explained by a long life span and costs of early reproduction. By providing the first empirical confirmations of key predictions of life-history theory across species, this study contributes to a better understanding of life-history evolution. © 2016 The Author(s). Evolution © 2016 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  18. Physical Fitness Measures as Potential Markers of Low Cognitive Function in Japanese Community-Dwelling Older Adults without Apparent Cognitive Problems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Narazaki, Kenji; Matsuo, Eri; Honda, Takanori; Nofuji, Yu; Yonemoto, Koji; Kumagai, Shuzo

    2014-09-01

    Detecting signs of cognitive impairment as early as possible is one of the most urgent challenges in preventive care of dementia. It has still been unclear whether physical fitness measures can serve as markers of low cognitive function, a sign of cognitive impairment, in older people free from dementia. The aim of the present study was to examine an association between each of five physical fitness measures and global cognition in Japanese community-dwelling older adults without apparent cognitive problems. The baseline research of the Sasaguri Genkimon Study was conducted from May to August 2011 in Sasaguri town, Fukuoka, Japan. Of the 2,629 baseline subjects who were aged 65 years or older and not certified as individuals requiring nursing care by the town, 1,552 participants without apparent cognitive problems (Mini-Mental State Examination score ≥24) were involved in the present study (59.0% of the baseline subjects, median age: 72 years, men: 40.1%). Global cognitive function was measured by the Japanese version of the Montreal Cognitive Assessment. Handgrip strength, leg strength, sit-to-stand rate, gait speed, and one-leg stand time were examined as physical fitness measures. In multiple linear regression analyses, each of the five physical fitness measures was positively associated with the Montreal Cognitive Assessment score after adjusting for age and sex (p cognitive function in Japanese community-dwelling older people without apparent cognitive problems. These results suggest that each of the physical fitness measures has a potential as a single marker of low cognitive function in older populations free from dementia and thereby can be useful in community-based preventive care of dementia. Key pointsThere is a great need for identifying lifestyle-related markers which help detect subtle cognitive impairment in the preclinical or earlier phase of dementia.In the present study, each of the five physical fitness measures employed was linearly and

  19. The effect of ionizing radiation on reproductive potential of Tetranychus urticae Koch. spider and its response to pesticides

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zil'bermints, I.V.; Zhuravleva, L.M.; Dubovoj, V.P.

    1988-01-01

    It was shown that even a single exposure of spider (tetranychus urticae Koch.) to ionizing radiation changes its reproductive potency, shortens the life span of females, reduces the time of laying and causes unfavourable shifts in sex ratio within at least two generations, whereas its response to pesticides does not change

  20. Fitness club

    CERN Multimedia

    Fitness club

    2011-01-01

    General fitness Classes Enrolments are open for general fitness classes at CERN taking place on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday lunchtimes in the Pump Hall (building 216). There are shower facilities for both men and women. It is possible to pay for 1, 2 or 3 classes per week for a minimum of 1 month and up to 6 months. Check out our rates and enrol at: http://cern.ch/club-fitness Hope to see you among us! CERN Fitness Club fitness.club@cern.ch  

  1. Evaluating Mind Fitness Training and Its Potential Effects on Surgical Residents’ Well-Being: A Mixed Methods Pilot Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lases, S S; Lombarts, M J M H; Slootweg, Irene A; Arah, Onyebuchi A; Pierik, E G J M; Heineman, Erik

    2016-01-01

    Residents’ well-being is essential for both the individual physician and the quality of patient care they deliver. Therefore, it is important to maintain or possibly enhance residents’ well-being. We investigated (i) the influence of mind fitness training (MFT) on quality of care-related well-being characteristics: work engagement, empathy, work satisfaction and stress perception and explored (ii) residents’ perceptions of MFT. A multicenter study was conducted in eight Dutch teaching hospitals, from September 2012 to February 2014, using mixed methods—that is, quantitative and qualitative approaches to data collection and analysis. Eighty-nine surgical residents were invited to participate in pre- and post-intervention questionnaire surveys. Twenty-two residents participated in MFT and were additionally invited to evaluate the training by post-intervention interviews including open questions. At baseline 22 (100%) residents in intervention group and 47 (70.2%) residents in control group, and postintervention 20 (90.9 %) residents in intervention group and 41 (66.1%) residents in control group completed the questionnaires. In intervention-group, residents’ specialty satisfaction increased by 0.23 point on 5-point Likert scale (95% CI 0.23–0.24, P < 0.001) while stress scores decreased by -0.94 point on 10-point scale (95% CI -1.77 to -0.12, P = 0.026). No substantial changes were observed in control group. Participation in MFT was positively associated with residents’ empathy (b = 7.22; 95% CI 4.33–10.11; P < 0.001) and specialty satisfaction scores (b = 0.42; 95% CI 0.18–0.65; P = 0.001). Residents positively evaluated MFT with median scores of 6.80 for training design and 7.21 for outcome (10-point scale). Residents perceived improvement in focusing skills and reported being more aware of their own state of mind and feeling calmer and more in control. Mind fitness training could improve residents’ empathy, specialty satisfaction, stress

  2. Assessing the potential for rainbow trout reproduction in tributaries of the Mountain Fork River below Broken Bow Dam, southeastern Oklahoma

    Science.gov (United States)

    Long, James M.; Starks, Trevor A.; Farling, Tyler; Bastarache, Robert

    2016-01-01

    Stocked trout (Salmonidae) in reservoir tailwater systems in the Southern United States have been shown to use tributary streams for spawning and rearing. The lower Mountain Fork of the Little River below Broken Bow Dam is one of two year-round tailwater trout fisheries in Oklahoma, and the only one with evidence of reproduction by stocked rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss). Whether stocked trout use tributaries in this system for spawning is unknown. Furthermore, an

  3. Evaluation of potential mechanisms of atrazine-induced reproductive impairment in fathead minnow (Pimephales promelas) and Japanese medaka (Oryzias latipes)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richter, Cathy; Papoulias, Diana M.; Whyte, Jeffrey J.; Tillitt, Donald E.

    2016-01-01

    Atrazine has been implicated in reproductive dysfunction of exposed organisms, and previous studies documented decreased egg production in Japanese medaka (Oryzias latipes) and fathead minnows (Pimephales promelas) during 30-d to 38-d exposures to 0.5 µg/L, 5 µg/L, and 50 µg/L atrazine. The authors evaluated possible mechanisms underlying the reduction in egg production. Gene expression in steroidogenesis pathways and the hypothalamus–pituitary–gonad axis of male and female fish was measured. Atrazine did not significantly induce gonad aromatase (cyp19a1a) expression. An atrazine-induced shift in the number of females in an active reproductive state was observed. Expression of the egg maturation genes vitellogenin 1 (vtg1) and zona pellucida glycoprotein 3.1 (zp3.1) in medaka females was correlated and had a bimodal distribution. In both species, females with low vtg1 or zp3.1 expression also had low expression of steroidogenesis genes in the gonad, estrogen receptor in the liver, and gonadotropins in the brain. In the medaka, the number of females per tank that had high expression of zp3.1 was significantly correlated with egg production per tank. The number of medaka females with low expression of zp3.1 increased significantly with atrazine exposure. Thus, the decline in egg production observed in response to atrazine exposure may be the result of a coordinated downregulation of genes required for reproduction in a subset of females.

  4. The reproductive potential of patients with Mayer-Rokitansky-Küster-Hauser syndrome using gestational surrogacy: a systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friedler, Shevach; Grin, Leonti; Liberti, Gad; Saar-Ryss, Buzhena; Rabinson, Yaakov; Meltzer, Semion

    2016-01-01

    Women with Mayer-Rokitansky-Küster-Hauser (MRKH) syndrome may reproduce after uterine transplantation or IVF using a gestational surrogate. As uterine transplantation is still an experimental procedure, data on their clinical outcome using assisted reproduction techniques are imperative to allow evidence-based counselling. For this purpose, a systematic non-restricted electronic literature search was conducted. The 14 studies included in this review were published between 1988 and 2011. From a cohort of 140 patients with MRKH syndrome, mostly from the the USA and Israel, only four studies contained data on more than 10 patients; the others were case reports or small series. In the studies reviewed, 125 patients underwent 369 cycles of IVF with gestational surrogacy, and delivered 71 newborns. The reporting of outcome of patients with MRKH syndrome undergoing assisted reproduction techniques in the available literature is less than optimal and is characterized by bias of publication, inconsistent reports, including few patients, treated over a long time span, and lacking systematic reports from large IVF centres. None of the national registries contain specific outcome data on patients with MRKH syndrome. The paucity of data limits the possibility to draw firm conclusions but substantiates the need for a systematic multicentre reporting system. Copyright © 2015 Reproductive Healthcare Ltd. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. An evaluation of biomarkers of reproductive function and potential contaminant effects in Florida largemouth bass ( Micropterus salmoidesfloridanus) sampled from the St. Johns River.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sepúlveda, María S; Johnson, William E; Higman, John C; Denslow, Nancy D; Schoeb, Trenton R; Gross, Timothy S

    2002-04-22

    alterations were most evident in bass sampled from the site closest to the paper mill discharge, it is possible that exposure to these effluents might explain at least some of the results reported here. However, the presence of reproductive alterations in fish sampled at a considerable distance from the mill discharge (Green Cove, 40 km) would suggest exposure to chemicals released from sources other than the paper mill plant. It is clear that additional studies are needed to evaluate the potential impact of these reproductive changes in populations of Florida largemouth bass inhabiting the St. Johns River.

  6. Mechanism of Resistance Acquisition and Potential Associated Fitness Costs in Amyelois transitella (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae) Exposed to Pyrethroid Insecticides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demkovich, Mark; Siegel, Joel P; Higbee, Bradley S; Berenbaum, May R

    2015-06-01

    The polyphagous navel orangeworm, Amyelois transitella (Walker) (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae), is the most destructive pest of nut crops, including almonds and pistachios, in California orchards. Management of this insect has typically been a combination of cultural controls and insecticide use, with the latter increasing substantially along with the value of these commodities. Possibly associated with increased insecticide use, resistance has been observed recently in navel orangeworm populations in Kern County, California. In studies characterizing a putatively pyrethroid-resistant strain (R347) of navel orangeworm, susceptibility to bifenthrin and β-cyfluthrin was compared with that of an established colony of susceptible navel orangeworm. Administration of piperonyl butoxide and S,S,S-tributyl phosphorotrithioate in first-instar feeding bioassays with the pyrethroids bifenthrin and β-cyfluthrin produced synergistic effects and demonstrated that cytochrome P450 monooxygenases and carboxylesterases contribute to resistance in this population. Resistance is therefore primarily metabolic and likely the result of overexpression of specific cytochrome P450 monooxygenases and carboxylesterase genes. Resistance was assessed by median lethal concentration (LC50) assays and maintained across nine generations in the laboratory. Life history trait comparisons between the resistant strain and susceptible strain revealed significantly lower pupal weights in resistant individuals reared on the same wheat bran-based artificial diet across six generations. Time to second instar was greater in the resistant strain than the susceptible strain, although overall development time was not significantly different between strains. Resistance was heritable and may have an associated fitness cost, which could influence the dispersal and expansion of resistant populations in nut-growing areas in California. © The Authors 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological

  7. A worked example of "best fit" framework synthesis: a systematic review of views concerning the taking of some potential chemopreventive agents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carroll, Christopher; Booth, Andrew; Cooper, Katy

    2011-03-16

    A variety of different approaches to the synthesis of qualitative data are advocated in the literature. The aim of this paper is to describe the application of a pragmatic method of qualitative evidence synthesis and the lessons learned from adopting this "best fit" framework synthesis approach. An evaluation of framework synthesis as an approach to the qualitative systematic review of evidence exploring the views of adults to the taking of potential agents within the context of the primary prevention of colorectal cancer. Twenty papers from North America, Australia, the UK and Europe met the criteria for inclusion. Fourteen themes were identified a priori from a related, existing conceptual model identified in the literature, which were then used to code the extracted data. Further analysis resulted in the generation of a more sophisticated model with additional themes. The synthesis required a combination of secondary framework and thematic analysis approaches and was conducted within a health technology assessment timeframe. The novel and pragmatic "best fit" approach to framework synthesis developed and described here was found to be fit for purpose. Future research should seek to test further this approach to qualitative data synthesis.

  8. Fitness Club

    CERN Multimedia

    Fitness Club

    2011-01-01

    The CERN Fitness Club is organising Zumba Classes on the first Wednesday of each month, starting 7 September (19.00 – 20.00). What is Zumba®? It’s an exhilarating, effective, easy-to-follow, Latin-inspired, calorie-burning dance fitness-party™ that’s moving millions of people toward joy and health. Above all it’s great fun and an excellent work out. Price: 22 CHF/person Sign-up via the following form: https://espace.cern.ch/club-fitness/Lists/Zumba%20Subscription/NewForm.aspx For more info: fitness.club@cern.ch

  9. Adaptive Potential for the Invasion of Novel Host Plants in the Bean Weevil: Patterns of the Reproductive Behavior in Populations That Used Different Host Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dragana Milanović

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available The goal of this work was to examine interpopulation patterns in the reproductive behavior of populations of bean weevil (Acanthoscelides obtectus Say; Coleoptera: Bruchidae that had different levels of specialization on their native host plant – the bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L., as well as on a novel host plant – the chickpea (Cicer arietinum Thorn. The obtained pattern of interpopulation mating behavior seemed exactly as if the males on chickpea had evolved a specific odor and/or a courtship ritual that females of populationson bean found repulsive. Unlike females, the males of bean populations seemed to be willing to mate with females from the population on chickpea equally as with their own females. Such an asymmetric pattern of reproductive isolation between populations ofa species has been often considered an initial phase of a process of speciation. Thus, our results could be a good starting point for further, thorough examination of both the role of the level of host specialization in females and the role of biochemical characteristics of male pheromone (and/or their cuticular hydrocarbones in the evolution of pre-reproductive isolation between insect populations.As the results of this study, together those of previous studies on A. obtectus, suggest great evolutionary potential for invasions of and fast specialization on novel host plants, they could provide valuable information for the development of long-term strategiesunder the programmes of Integrated Pest Management.

  10. Effect of startup circuit exercise on derivatives reactive oxygen metabolites, biological antioxidant potential levels and physical fitness of adolescents boys with intellectual disabilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Chang-Gyun; Lee, Jin-Seok

    2016-10-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of starup circuit exercise program on derivatives reactive oxygen metabolite (d-ROM) and biological antioxidant potential (BAP) levels and physical fitness of adolescents with intellectual disabilities, and to sugesst exercise programs to promote the health and physical development of such adolescents. Twelve students with intellectual disabilities were divided into two groups; circuit exercise group (CE group: n=6; age, 14.83±0.98 years; height, 163.83±5.78 cm; body mass, 67.08±3.32 kg; %Fat, 25.68±2.42), control group (CON group: n=6; age: 15.00±0.63 years; height, 162.33±4.41 cm; body mass, 67.50±3.62 kg; %Fat, 26.96±2.06). The CE group performed the CE program 4 times a week over a 12-week period. The CON group maintained their activities of daily living. The following were measured before and after intervention: physical fitness by before and after the completion of the training programm, and were measured and blood samples were assessed. The results of the study indicate that the 12-week CE program increased significantly physical fitness ( P <0.05). Furthermore, This study proved that the CE program improved physical fitness, and reduced the d-ROM levels, and increased the BAP levels of the adolescents with intellectual disabilities. Therefore, it may enhance the health and physical development of adolescents boys with intellectual disabilities.

  11. Alcohol production as an adaptive livelihood strategy for women farmers in Tanzania and its potential for unintended consequences on women's reproductive health.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra I McCoy

    Full Text Available Although women occupy a central position in agriculture in many developing countries, they face numerous constraints to achieving their full potential including unequal access to assets and limited decision-making authority. We explore the intersection of agricultural livelihoods, food and economic security, and women's sexual and reproductive health in Iringa Region, Tanzania. Our goal was to understand whether the benefits of supporting women in the agricultural sector might also extend to more distal outcomes, including sexual and reproductive health.Using the Sustainable Livelihoods Framework to guide data collection, we conducted 13 focus group discussions (FGD with female (n = 11 and male farmers (n = 2 and 20 in-depth interviews with agricultural extension officers (n = 10 and village agro-dealers (n = 10.Despite providing the majority of agricultural labor, women have limited control over land and earned income and have little bargaining power. In response to these constraints, women adopt adaptive livelihood strategies, such as alcohol production, that allow them to retain control over income and support their households. However, women's central role in alcohol production, in concert with the ubiquitous nature of alcohol consumption, places them at risk by enhancing their vulnerability to unsafe or transactional sex. This represents a dangerous confluence of risk for female farmers, in which alcohol plays an important role in income generation and also facilitates high-risk sexual behavior.Alcohol production and consumption has the potential to both directly and indirectly place women at risk for undesirable sexual and reproductive health outcomes. Group formation, better access to finance, and engaging with agricultural extension officers were identified as potential interventions for supporting women farmers and challenging harmful gender norms. In addition, joint, multi-sectoral approaches from health and agriculture

  12. Alcohol Production as an Adaptive Livelihood Strategy for Women Farmers in Tanzania and Its Potential for Unintended Consequences on Women’s Reproductive Health

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCoy, Sandra I.; Ralph, Lauren J.; Wilson, Wema; Padian, Nancy S.

    2013-01-01

    Background Although women occupy a central position in agriculture in many developing countries, they face numerous constraints to achieving their full potential including unequal access to assets and limited decision-making authority. We explore the intersection of agricultural livelihoods, food and economic security, and women’s sexual and reproductive health in Iringa Region, Tanzania. Our goal was to understand whether the benefits of supporting women in the agricultural sector might also extend to more distal outcomes, including sexual and reproductive health. Methods Using the Sustainable Livelihoods Framework to guide data collection, we conducted 13 focus group discussions (FGD) with female (n = 11) and male farmers (n = 2) and 20 in-depth interviews with agricultural extension officers (n = 10) and village agro-dealers (n = 10). Results Despite providing the majority of agricultural labor, women have limited control over land and earned income and have little bargaining power. In response to these constraints, women adopt adaptive livelihood strategies, such as alcohol production, that allow them to retain control over income and support their households. However, women’s central role in alcohol production, in concert with the ubiquitous nature of alcohol consumption, places them at risk by enhancing their vulnerability to unsafe or transactional sex. This represents a dangerous confluence of risk for female farmers, in which alcohol plays an important role in income generation and also facilitates high-risk sexual behavior. Conclusions Alcohol production and consumption has the potential to both directly and indirectly place women at risk for undesirable sexual and reproductive health outcomes. Group formation, better access to finance, and engaging with agricultural extension officers were identified as potential interventions for supporting women farmers and challenging harmful gender norms. In addition, joint, multi

  13. Alcohol production as an adaptive livelihood strategy for women farmers in Tanzania and its potential for unintended consequences on women's reproductive health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCoy, Sandra I; Ralph, Lauren J; Wilson, Wema; Padian, Nancy S

    2013-01-01

    Although women occupy a central position in agriculture in many developing countries, they face numerous constraints to achieving their full potential including unequal access to assets and limited decision-making authority. We explore the intersection of agricultural livelihoods, food and economic security, and women's sexual and reproductive health in Iringa Region, Tanzania. Our goal was to understand whether the benefits of supporting women in the agricultural sector might also extend to more distal outcomes, including sexual and reproductive health. Using the Sustainable Livelihoods Framework to guide data collection, we conducted 13 focus group discussions (FGD) with female (n = 11) and male farmers (n = 2) and 20 in-depth interviews with agricultural extension officers (n = 10) and village agro-dealers (n = 10). Despite providing the majority of agricultural labor, women have limited control over land and earned income and have little bargaining power. In response to these constraints, women adopt adaptive livelihood strategies, such as alcohol production, that allow them to retain control over income and support their households. However, women's central role in alcohol production, in concert with the ubiquitous nature of alcohol consumption, places them at risk by enhancing their vulnerability to unsafe or transactional sex. This represents a dangerous confluence of risk for female farmers, in which alcohol plays an important role in income generation and also facilitates high-risk sexual behavior. Alcohol production and consumption has the potential to both directly and indirectly place women at risk for undesirable sexual and reproductive health outcomes. Group formation, better access to finance, and engaging with agricultural extension officers were identified as potential interventions for supporting women farmers and challenging harmful gender norms. In addition, joint, multi-sectoral approaches from health and agriculture and

  14. Fodbold Fitness

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bennike, Søren

    Samfundet forandrer sig og ligeså gør danskernes idrætsmønstre. Fodbold Fitness, der er afhandlingens omdrejningspunkt, kan iagttages som en reaktion på disse forandringer. Afhandlingen ser nærmere på Fodbold Fitness og implementeringen af dette, der ingenlunde er nogen let opgave. Bennike bidrager...

  15. Hard time to be parents? Sea urchin fishery shifts potential reproductive contribution of population onto the shoulders of the young adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barbara Loi

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Background In Sardinia, as in other regions of the Mediterranean Sea, sustainable fisheries of the sea urchin Paracentrotus lividus have become a necessity. At harvesting sites, the systematic removal of large individuals (diameter ≥ 50 mm seriously compromises the biological and ecological functions of sea urchin populations. Specifically, in this study, we compared the reproductive potential of the populations from Mediterranean coastal areas which have different levels of sea urchin fishing pressure. The areas were located at Su Pallosu Bay, where pressure is high and Tavolara-Punta Coda Cavallo, a marine protected area where sea urchin harvesting is low. Methods Reproductive potential was estimated by calculating the gonadosomatic index (GSI from June 2013 to May 2014 both for individuals of commercial size (diameter without spines, TD ≥ 50 mm and the undersized ones with gonads (30 ≤ TD < 40 mm and 40 ≤ TD < 50 mm. Gamete output was calculated for the commercial-size class and the undersized individuals with fertile gonads (40 ≤ TD < 50 mm in relation to their natural density (gamete output per m2. Results The reproductive potential of populations was slightly different at the beginning of the sampling period but it progressed at different rates with an early spring spawning event in the high-pressure zone and two gamete depositions in early and late spring in the low-pressure zone. For each fertile size class, GSI values changed significantly during the year of our study and between the two zones. Although the multiple spawning events determined a two-fold higher total gamete output of population (popTGO in the low-pressure zone, the population mean gamete output (popMGO was similar in the two zones. In the high-pressure zone, the commercial-sized individuals represented approximatively 5% of the population, with almost all the individuals smaller than 60 mm producing an amount of gametes nearly three times lower than the

  16. Fitness cost

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Karen L.; Pedersen, Thomas M.; Udekwu, Klas I.

    2012-01-01

    phage types, predominantly only penicillin resistant. We investigated whether isolates of this epidemic were associated with a fitness cost, and we employed a mathematical model to ask whether these fitness costs could have led to the observed reduction in frequency. Bacteraemia isolates of S. aureus...... from Denmark have been stored since 1957. We chose 40 S. aureus isolates belonging to phage complex 83A, clonal complex 8 based on spa type, ranging in time of isolation from 1957 to 1980 and with varyous antibiograms, including both methicillin-resistant and -susceptible isolates. The relative fitness...... of each isolate was determined in a growth competition assay with a reference isolate. Significant fitness costs of 215 were determined for the MRSA isolates studied. There was a significant negative correlation between number of antibiotic resistances and relative fitness. Multiple regression analysis...

  17. Getting CSR communication fit

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schmeltz, Line

    2017-01-01

    Companies experience increasing legal and societal pressure to communicate about their corporate social responsibility (CSR) engagements from a number of different publics. One very important group is that of young consumers who are predicted to be the most important and influential consumer group...... in the near future. From a value- theoretical base, this article empirically explores the role and applicability of ‘fit’ in strategic CSR communication targeted at young consumers. Point of departure is taken in the well-known strategic fit (a logical link between a company’s CSR commitment and its core...... values) and is further developed by introducing two additional fits, the CSR- Consumer fit and the CSR-Consumer-Company fit (Triple Fit). Through a sequential design, the three fits are empirically tested and their potential for meeting young consumers’ expectations for corporate CSR messaging...

  18. Exceptional longevity in female Rottweiler dogs is not encumbered by investment in reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kengeri, S S; Maras, A H; Suckow, C L; Chiang, E C; Waters, D J

    2013-12-01

    To better understand the potential trade-off between female reproductive investment and longevity in an emerging model of human healthspan, we studied pet dogs to determine whether intensity of reproduction (total number of offspring) encumbered the likelihood of exceptional longevity. This hypothesis was tested by collecting and analyzing lifetime medical histories, including complete reproductive histories, for a cohort of canine "centenarians"--exceptionally long-lived Rottweiler dogs that lived more than 30% longer than the breed's average life expectancy. Reproductive intensity (number of litters, total number of pups) and tempo of reproductive effort (age at first reproduction, mean interbirth interval, age at last reproduction) in 78 exceptionally long-lived female Rottweilers (>13 years old) were compared to a cohort of 97 female Rottweilers that had usual longevity (age at death 8.0-10.75 years). We found no evidence that a mother's physiological investment in offspring was associated with disadvantaged longevity. Instead, similar to some studies in women, our data showed an inverted U-shaped trend, suggesting that moderate investment in reproduction may promote longevity. Late reproductive success, a much-studied surrogate of maternal fitness in women, was not a strong predictor of longevity in this canine cohort. Instead, independent of reproductive investment, the duration of lifetime ovary exposure was significantly associated with highly successful aging. Our results from exceptionally long-lived pet dogs provide rationale for further investigative efforts to understand the ovary-sensitive biological factors that promote healthy longevity in women and pet dogs.

  19. Aphid reproductive investment in response to mortality risks

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    Background Aphids are striking in their prodigious reproductive capacity and reliance on microbial endosymbionts, which provision their hosts with necessary amino acids and provide protection against parasites and heat stress. Perhaps as a result of this bacterial dependence, aphids have limited immune function that may leave them vulnerable to bacterial pathogens. An alternative, non-immunological response that may be available to infected aphids is to increase reproduction, thereby ameliorating fitness loss from infection. Such a response would reduce the need to mount a potentially energetically costly immune response, and would parallel that of other hosts that alter life-history traits when there is a risk of infection. Here we examined whether pea aphids (Acyrthosiphon pisum) respond to immunological challenges by increasing reproduction. As a comparison to the response to the internal cue of risk elicited by immunological challenge, we also exposed pea aphids to an external cue of risk - the aphid alarm pheromone (E)-β-farnesene (EBF), which is released in the presence of predators. For each challenge, we also examined whether the presence of symbionts modified the host response, as maintaining host fitness in the face of challenge would benefit both the host and its dependent bacteria. Results We found that aphids stabbed abdominally with a sterile needle had reduced fecundity relative to control aphids but that aphids stabbed with a needle bearing heat-killed bacteria had reproduction intermediate, and statistically indistinguishable, to the aphids stabbed with a sterile needle and the controls. Aphids with different species of facultative symbiotic bacteria had different reproductive patterns overall, but symbionts in general did not alter aphid reproduction in response to bacterial exposure. However, in response to exposure to alarm pheromone, aphids with Hamiltonella defensa or Serratia symbiotica symbiotic infections increased reproduction but those

  20. Flower diversity and bee reproduction in an arid ecosystem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jimena Dorado

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Background: Diverse flower communities are more stable in floral resource production along the flowering season, but the question about how the diversity and stability of resources affect pollinator reproduction remains open. High plant diversity could favor short foraging trips, which in turn would enhance bee fitness. In addition to plant diversity, greater temporal stability of floral resources in diverse communities could favor pollinator fitness because such communities are likely to occupy the phenological space more broadly, increasing floral availability for pollinators throughout the season. In addition, this potential effect of flower diversity on bee reproduction could be stronger for generalist pollinators because they can use a broader floral spectrum. Based on above arguments we predicted that pollinator reproduction would be positively correlated to flower diversity, and to temporal stability in flower production, and that this relationship would be stronger for the most generalized pollinator species. Materials and Methods: Using structural equation models, we evaluated the effect of these variables and other ecological factors on three estimates of bee reproduction (average number of brood cells per nest per site, total number of brood cells per site, and total number of nests per site, and whether such effects were modulated by bee generalization on floral resources. Results: Contrary to our expectations, flower diversity had no effect on bee reproduction, stability in flower production had a weakly negative effect on one of the bee reproductive variables, and the strength of the fitness-diversity relationship was unrelated to bee generalization. In contrast, elevation had a negative effect on bee reproduction, despite the narrow elevation range encompassed by our sites. Discussion: Flower diversity did not affect the reproduction of the solitary bees studied here. This result could stem from the context dependence of the

  1. Flower diversity and bee reproduction in an arid ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dorado, Jimena; Vázquez, Diego P

    2016-01-01

    Diverse flower communities are more stable in floral resource production along the flowering season, but the question about how the diversity and stability of resources affect pollinator reproduction remains open. High plant diversity could favor short foraging trips, which in turn would enhance bee fitness. In addition to plant diversity, greater temporal stability of floral resources in diverse communities could favor pollinator fitness because such communities are likely to occupy the phenological space more broadly, increasing floral availability for pollinators throughout the season. In addition, this potential effect of flower diversity on bee reproduction could be stronger for generalist pollinators because they can use a broader floral spectrum. Based on above arguments we predicted that pollinator reproduction would be positively correlated to flower diversity, and to temporal stability in flower production, and that this relationship would be stronger for the most generalized pollinator species. Using structural equation models, we evaluated the effect of these variables and other ecological factors on three estimates of bee reproduction (average number of brood cells per nest per site, total number of brood cells per site, and total number of nests per site), and whether such effects were modulated by bee generalization on floral resources. Contrary to our expectations, flower diversity had no effect on bee reproduction, stability in flower production had a weakly negative effect on one of the bee reproductive variables, and the strength of the fitness-diversity relationship was unrelated to bee generalization. In contrast, elevation had a negative effect on bee reproduction, despite the narrow elevation range encompassed by our sites. Flower diversity did not affect the reproduction of the solitary bees studied here. This result could stem from the context dependence of the diversity-stability relationship, given that elevation had a positive effect on

  2. Evaluating the potential of natural reproduction and artificial techniques to increase Acropora cervicornis populations at Discovery Bay, Jamaica

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Norman J Quinn

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Shallow water Acropora species have become uncommon on north coast Jamaican coral reefs owing to a number of factors. On many reefs, algae have taken their place. The result is loss of habitat for many species of fish and invertebrates and less attractive reefs with fewer fish. These reefs appear to be prime candidates for coral restoration. However, the potential for coral to naturally recover should be examined before efforts to restore reefs are undertaken. Reef restoration is unnecessary if the population has the capacity to recovery through natural means. We observed that the rate of settlement of Acropora spat in the Caribbean is much lower than the spat settlement rate of several other Caribbean coral families and much lower than Acropora spat settlement rates in the South Pacific. A very low percentage of apparently healthy colonies of A. cervicornis possessed developing gametes in July 2005, a month before spawning. It appears that the long-term survival of remnant A. cervicornis populations is threatened unless successful sexual reproduction is restored. Several techniques were used to test transplant methods for restoring A. cervicornis populations. The mean survivorship and growth rate of one technique was >75% and nearly 250% per annum, respectively. Working with hotel operators, environmental groups, and local fishers, we are attempting to reintroduce A. cervicornis to sites where it previously existed and increase coral biomass and complexity at these sites. Reefs with greater A. cervicornis biomass have larger edible fish populations. With localized protection of these restored reefs we anticipate an increase of larger edible fish not only on reefs within the restored protected areas but also on adjacent reefs. Furthermore, increased coral and fish biodiversity improves the attractiveness of the reef community for divers and snorkelers. Rev. Biol. Trop. 54 (Suppl. 3: 105-116. Epub 2007 Jan. 15.Las especies someras de Acropora se

  3. Revealing polychaetes invasion patterns: Identification, reproduction and potential risks of the Korean ragworm, Perinereis linea (Treadwell), in the Western Mediterranean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arias, Andrés; Richter, Alexandra; Anadón, Nuria; Glasby, Christopher J.

    2013-10-01

    An established population of the polychaetous annelid Perinereis linea (Treadwell) is reported for the first time outside its native distribution range (NW Pacific). This exotic worm has reached the Western Mediterranean (Mar Menor lagoon) via importing live fishing-bait as it is commonly used by anglers in Mar Menor lagoon, an area largely used for recreational fishing. To avoid confusion with other related species, and because the scientific name has been in synonymy for many years, P. linea is redescribed and illustrated. We focus on the reproductive biology and ecology of P. linea to help to understand its introduction, naturalization and spread along this coastal lagoon. Comparison between the Mediterranean population with a native population from South Korea revealed that the species exhibits a great reproductive plasticity and adaptability, which depends on the environmental conditions. Perinereis linea can reproduce after acquiring the epitokous form or prior to complete epitokal modification. In the Mar Menor lagoon population females release eggs asynchronically without completing epitokal modifications. However, under particular laboratory conditions females produce eggs synchronically and release them after complete epitokal transformations. Fertilization can occur internally in the female coelom, and females release zygotes and larvae through openings in their body walls; they are then incubated in gelatinous masses attached to the female parapodia. The sperm morphology is of the ent-aquasperm type. The eggs and larvae are attacked by symbiotic ciliate protozoa that feed on their yolk reserves. These foreign ciliates may act as carriers of disease in native beachworms and constitute an important risk for the ecosystem health. Finally, we provide recommendations on the prevention of the adverse effects that this exotic ragworm can cause in receiving ecosystems.

  4. Hard time to be parents? Sea urchin fishery shifts potential reproductive contribution of population onto the shoulders of the young adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loi, Barbara; Guala, Ivan; Pires da Silva, Rodrigo; Brundu, Gianni; Baroli, Maura; Farina, Simone

    2017-01-01

    In Sardinia, as in other regions of the Mediterranean Sea, sustainable fisheries of the sea urchin Paracentrotus lividus have become a necessity. At harvesting sites, the systematic removal of large individuals (diameter ≥ 50 mm) seriously compromises the biological and ecological functions of sea urchin populations. Specifically, in this study, we compared the reproductive potential of the populations from Mediterranean coastal areas which have different levels of sea urchin fishing pressure. The areas were located at Su Pallosu Bay, where pressure is high and Tavolara-Punta Coda Cavallo, a marine protected area where sea urchin harvesting is low. Reproductive potential was estimated by calculating the gonadosomatic index (GSI) from June 2013 to May 2014 both for individuals of commercial size (diameter without spines, TD ≥ 50 mm) and the undersized ones with gonads (30 ≤ TD sea urchins than on their size. However, since population survival in the high-pressure zone is supported by the high density of undersized sea urchins between 30 and 50 mm, management measures should be addressed to maintain these sizes and to shed light on the source of the larval supply.

  5. Growth, reproductive phenology and yield responses of a potential biofuel plant, Jatropha curcas grown under projected 2050 levels of elevated CO2.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Sumit; Chaitanya, Bharatula S K; Ghatty, Sreenivas; Reddy, Attipalli R

    2014-11-01

    Jatropha (Jatropha curcas) is a non-edible oil producing plant which is being advocated as an alternative biofuel energy resource. Its ability to grow in diverse soil conditions and minimal requirements of essential agronomical inputs compared with other oilseed crops makes it viable for cost-effective advanced biofuel production. We designed a study to investigate the effects of elevated carbon dioxide concentration ([CO(2)]) (550 ppm) on the growth, reproductive development, source-sink relationships, fruit and seed yield of J. curcas. We report, for the first time that elevated CO(2) significantly influences reproductive characteristics of Jatropha and improve its fruit and seed yields. Net photosynthetic rate of Jatropha was 50% higher in plants grown in elevated CO(2) compared with field and ambient CO(2) -grown plants. The study also revealed that elevated CO(2) atmosphere significantly increased female to male flower ratio, above ground biomass and carbon sequestration potential in Jatropha (24 kg carbon per tree) after 1 year. Our data demonstrate that J. curcas was able to sustain enhanced rate of photosynthesis in elevated CO(2) conditions as it had sufficient sink strength to balance the increased biomass yields. Our study also elucidates that the economically important traits including fruit and seed yield in elevated CO(2) conditions were significantly high in J. curcas that holds great promise as a potential biofuel tree species for the future high CO(2) world. © 2014 Scandinavian Plant Physiology Society.

  6. Rules, culture, and fitness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baum, W M

    1995-01-01

    Behavior analysis risks intellectual isolation unless it integrates its explanations with evolutionary theory. Rule-governed behavior is an example of a topic that requires an evolutionary perspective for a full understanding. A rule may be defined as a verbal discriminative stimulus produced by the behavior of a speaker under the stimulus control of a long-term contingency between the behavior and fitness. As a discriminative stimulus, the rule strengthens listener behavior that is reinforced in the short run by socially mediated contingencies, but which also enters into the long-term contingency that enhances the listener's fitness. The long-term contingency constitutes the global context for the speaker's giving the rule. When a rule is said to be "internalized," the listener's behavior has switched from short- to long-term control. The fitness-enhancing consequences of long-term contingencies are health, resources, relationships, or reproduction. This view ties rules both to evolutionary theory and to culture. Stating a rule is a cultural practice. The practice strengthens, with short-term reinforcement, behavior that usually enhances fitness in the long run. The practice evolves because of its effect on fitness. The standard definition of a rule as a verbal statement that points to a contingency fails to distinguish between a rule and a bargain ("If you'll do X, then I'll do Y"), which signifies only a single short-term contingency that provides mutual reinforcement for speaker and listener. In contrast, the giving and following of a rule ("Dress warmly; it's cold outside") can be understood only by reference also to a contingency providing long-term enhancement of the listener's fitness or the fitness of the listener's genes. Such a perspective may change the way both behavior analysts and evolutionary biologists think about rule-governed behavior.

  7. Fitness Club

    CERN Multimedia

    Fitness Club

    2012-01-01

    Open to All: http://cern.ch/club-fitness  fitness.club@cern.ch Boxing Your supervisor makes your life too tough ! You really need to release the pressure you've been building up ! Come and join the fit-boxers. We train three times a week in Bd 216, classes for beginners and advanced available. Visit our website cern.ch/Boxing General Fitness Escape from your desk with our general fitness classes, to strengthen your heart, muscles and bones, improve you stamina, balance and flexibility, achieve new goals, be more productive and experience a sense of well-being, every Monday, Wednesday and Friday lunchtime, Tuesday mornings before work and Thursday evenings after work – join us for one of our monthly fitness workshops. Nordic Walking Enjoy the great outdoors; Nordic Walking is a great way to get your whole body moving and to significantly improve the condition of your muscles, heart and lungs. It will boost your energy levels no end. Pilates A body-conditioning technique de...

  8. Potential application of digital image-processing method and fitted logistic model to the control of oriental fruit moths (Grapholita molesta Busck).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Z G; Rong, E H; Li, S C; Zhang, L J; Zhang, Z W; Guo, Y Q; Ma, R Y

    2016-08-01

    Monitoring of oriental fruit moths (Grapholita molesta Busck) is a prerequisite for its control. This study introduced a digital image-processing method and logistic model for the control of oriental fruit moths. First, five triangular sex pheromone traps were installed separately within each area of 667 m2 in a peach orchard to monitor oriental fruit moths consecutively for 3 years. Next, full view images of oriental fruit moths were collected via a digital camera and then subjected to graying, separation and morphological analysis for automatic counting using MATLAB software. Afterwards, the results of automatic counting were used for fitting a logistic model to forecast the control threshold and key control period. There was a high consistency between automatic counting and manual counting (0.99, P model, oriental fruit moths had four occurrence peaks during a year, with a time-lag of 15-18 days between adult occurrence peak and the larval damage peak. Additionally, the key control period was from 28 June to 3 July each year, when the wormy fruit rate reached up to 5% and the trapping volume was approximately 10.2 per day per trap. Additionally, the key control period for the overwintering generation was 25 April. This study provides an automatic counting method and fitted logistic model with a great potential for application to the control of oriental fruit moths.

  9. The hydrogen abstraction reaction O(3P) + CH4: A new analytical potential energy surface based on fit to ab initio calculations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    González-Lavado, Eloisa; Corchado, Jose C.; Espinosa-Garcia, Joaquin

    2014-01-01

    Based exclusively on high-level ab initio calculations, a new full-dimensional analytical potential energy surface (PES-2014) for the gas-phase reaction of hydrogen abstraction from methane by an oxygen atom is developed. The ab initio information employed in the fit includes properties (equilibrium geometries, relative energies, and vibrational frequencies) of the reactants, products, saddle point, points on the reaction path, and points on the reaction swath, taking especial caution respecting the location and characterization of the intermediate complexes in the entrance and exit channels. By comparing with the reference results we show that the resulting PES-2014 reproduces reasonably well the whole set of ab initio data used in the fitting, obtained at the CCSD(T) = FULL/aug-cc-pVQZ//CCSD(T) = FC/cc-pVTZ single point level, which represents a severe test of the new surface. As a first application, on this analytical surface we perform an extensive dynamics study using quasi-classical trajectory calculations, comparing the results with recent experimental and theoretical data. The excitation function increases with energy (concave-up) reproducing experimental and theoretical information, although our values are somewhat larger. The OH rotovibrational distribution is cold in agreement with experiment. Finally, our results reproduce experimental backward scattering distribution, associated to a rebound mechanism. These results lend confidence to the accuracy of the new surface, which substantially improves the results obtained with our previous surface (PES-2000) for the same system

  10. Modelling predicts that tolerance to drought during reproductive development will be required for high yield potential and stability of wheat in Europe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Semenov, Mikhail A.; Stratonovitch, Pierre; Paul, Matthew J.

    2017-04-01

    Short periods of extreme weather, such as a spell of high temperature or drought during a sensitive stage of development, could result in substantial yield losses due to reduction in grain number and grain size. In a modelling study (Stratonovitch & Semenov 2015), heat tolerance around flowering in wheat was identified as a key trait for increased yield potential in Europe under climate change. Ji et all (Ji et al. 2010) demonstrated cultivar specific responses of yield to drought stress around flowering in wheat. They hypothesised that carbohydrate supply to anthers may be the key in maintaining pollen fertility and grain number in wheat. It was shown in (Nuccio et al. 2015) that genetically modified varieties of maize that increase the concentration of sucrose in ear spikelets, performed better under non-drought and drought conditions in field experiments. The objective of this modelling study was to assess potential benefits of tolerance to drought during reproductive development for wheat yield potential and yield stability across Europe. We used the Sirius wheat model to optimise wheat ideotypes for 2050 (HadGEM2, RCP8.5) climate scenarios at selected European sites. Eight cultivar parameters were optimised to maximise mean yields, including parameters controlling phenology, canopy growth and water limitation. At those sites where water could be limited, ideotypes sensitive to drought produced substantially lower mean yields and higher yield variability compare with tolerant ideotypes. Therefore, tolerance to drought during reproductive development is likely to be required for wheat cultivars optimised for the future climate in Europe in order to achieve high yield potential and yield stability.

  11. Development and reproductive potential of Tyrophagus putrescentiae (Acari: Acaridae) on plant-parasitic nematodes and artificial diets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abou El-Atta, Doaa Abd El-Maksoud; Osman, Mohamed Ali

    2016-04-01

    This study investigated development, reproduction and life table parameters of the astigmatid mold mite Tyrophagus putrescentiae (Schrank) (Acari: Acaridae) feeding on egg-masses or adult females of the nematode Meloidogyne incognita, egg-masses of the nematode Rotylenchulus reniformis, ras cheese or yeast at 25 ± 1 °C, 70 ± 10 % RH in the dark. Immature developmental times were shorter when the mite was fed females of M. incognita followed by yeast. Different prey/diet types had no significant effect on longevity and lifespan of both males and females. Daily oviposition rate (eggs/female/day) was highest for mites fed yeast (20.8 ± 1.8 eggs) and lowest for mites fed females of M. incognita (6.6 ± 0.5). Intrinsic rate of natural increase (r m) was highest for mites fed yeast compared to other prey/diet; no significant differences in r m were observed among mites fed on non-yeast diets. This result may suggest a role of T. putrescentiae as biocontrol agent of plant-parasitic nematodes and the yeast may be used for mite mass-production purposes.

  12. Canine tooth size and fitness in male mandrills (Mandrillus sphinx).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leigh, Steven R; Setchell, Joanna M; Charpentier, Marie; Knapp, Leslie A; Wickings, E Jean

    2008-07-01

    Sexual selection theory explains the evolution of exaggerated male morphologies and weaponry, but the fitness consequences of developmental and age-related changes in these features remain poorly understood. This long-term study of mandrill monkeys (Mandrillus sphinx) demonstrates how age-related changes in canine tooth weaponry and adult canine size correlate closely with male lifetime reproductive success. Combining long-term demographic and morphometric data reveals that male fitness covaries simply and directly with canine ontogeny, adult maximum size, and wear. However, fitness is largely independent of other somatometrics. Male mandrills sire offspring almost exclusively when their canines exceed approximately 30 mm, or two-thirds of average adult value (45 mm). Moreover, sires have larger canines than nonsires. The tooth diminishes through wear as animals age, corresponding with, and perhaps influencing, reproductive senescence. These factors combine to constrain male reproductive opportunities to a brief timespan, defined by the period of maximum canine length. Sexually-selected weaponry, especially when it is nonrenewable like the primate canine tooth, is intimately tied to the male life course. Our analyses of this extremely dimorphic species indicate that sexual selection is closely intertwined with growth, development, and aging, pointing to new directions for sexual selection theory. Moreover, the primate canine tooth has potential as a simple mammalian system for testing genetically-based models of aging. Finally, the tooth may record details of life histories in fossil primates, especially when sexual selection has played a role in the evolution of dimorphism.

  13. Current indirect fitness and future direct fitness are not incompatible.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brahma, Anindita; Mandal, Souvik; Gadagkar, Raghavendra

    2018-02-01

    In primitively eusocial insects, many individuals function as workers despite being capable of independent reproduction. Such altruistic behaviour is usually explained by the argument that workers gain indirect fitness by helping close genetic relatives. The focus on indirect fitness has left open the question of whether workers are also capable of getting direct fitness in the future in spite of working towards indirect fitness in the present. To investigate this question, we recorded behavioural profiles of all wasps on six naturally occurring nests of Ropalidia marginata , and then isolated all wasps in individual plastic boxes, giving them an opportunity to initiate nests and lay eggs. We found that 41% of the wasps successfully did so. Compared to those that failed to initiate nests, those that did were significantly younger, had significantly higher frequency of self-feeding behaviour on their parent nests but were not different in the levels of work performed in the parent nests. Thus ageing and poor feeding, rather than working for their colonies, constrain individuals for future independent reproduction. Hence, future direct fitness and present work towards gaining indirect fitness are not incompatible, making it easier for worker behaviour to be selected by kin selection or multilevel selection. © 2018 The Author(s).

  14. Riboflavin Provisioning Underlies Wolbachia's Fitness Contribution to Its Insect Host.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moriyama, Minoru; Nikoh, Naruo; Hosokawa, Takahiro; Fukatsu, Takema

    2015-11-10

    Endosymbiotic bacteria of the genus Wolbachia represent the most successful symbiotic bacteria in the terrestrial ecosystem. The success of Wolbachia has been ascribed to its remarkable phenotypic effects on host reproduction, such as cytoplasmic incompatibility, whereby maternally inherited bacteria can spread in their host populations at the expense of their host's fitness. Meanwhile, recent theoretical as well as empirical studies have unveiled that weak and/or conditional positive fitness effects may significantly facilitate invasion and spread of Wolbachia infections in host populations. Here, we report a previously unrecognized nutritional aspect, the provision of riboflavin (vitamin B2), that potentially underpins the Wolbachia-mediated fitness benefit to insect hosts. A comparative genomic survey for synthetic capability of B vitamins revealed that only the synthesis pathway for riboflavin is highly conserved among diverse insect-associated Wolbachia strains, while the synthesis pathways for other B vitamins were either incomplete or absent. Molecular phylogenetic and genomic analyses of riboflavin synthesis genes from diverse Wolbachia strains revealed that, in general, their phylogenetic relationships are concordant with Wolbachia's genomic phylogeny, suggesting that the riboflavin synthesis genes have been stably maintained in the course of Wolbachia evolution. In rearing experiments with bedbugs (Cimex lectularius) on blood meals in which B vitamin contents were manipulated, we demonstrated that Wolbachia's riboflavin provisioning significantly contributes to growth, survival, and reproduction of the insect host. These results provide a physiological basis upon which Wolbachia-mediated positive fitness consequences are manifested and shed new light on the ecological and evolutionary relevance of Wolbachia infections. Conventionally, Wolbachia has been regarded as a parasitic bacterial endosymbiont that manipulates the host insect's reproduction in a

  15. Fitness club

    CERN Multimedia

    Fitness club

    2013-01-01

      Nordic Walking Classes Come join the Nordic walking classes and outings offered by the CERN Fitness Club starting September 2013. Our licensed instructor Christine offers classes for people who’ve never tried Nordic Walking and who would like to learn the technique, and outings for people who have completed the classes and enjoy going out as a group. Course 1: Tuesdays 12:30 - 13:30 24 September, 1 October, 8 October, 15 October Course 2: Tuesdays 12:30 - 13:30 5 November, 12 November, 19 November, 26 November Outings will take place on Thursdays (12:30 to 13:30) from 12 September 2013. We meet at the CERN Club Barracks car park (close to Entrance A) 10 minutes before departure. Prices: 50 CHF for 4 classes, including the 10 CHF Club membership. Payments made directly to instructor. Renting Poles: Poles can be rented from Christine at 5 CHF / hour. Subscription: Please subscribe at: http://cern.ch/club-fitness Looking forward to seeing you among us! Fitness Club FitnessClub@c...

  16. Fitness Club

    CERN Multimedia

    Fitness Club

    2012-01-01

    Get in Shape for Summer with the CERN Fitness Club Saturday 23 June 2012 from 14:30 to 16.30 (doors open at 14.00) Germana’s Fitness Workshop. Build strength and stamina, sculpt and tone your body and get your heart pumping with Germana’s workout mixture of Cardio Attack, Power Pump, Power Step, Cardio Combat and Cross-Training. Where: 216 (Pump room – equipped with changing rooms and showers). What to wear: comfortable clothes and indoor sports shoes + bring a drink! How much: 15 chf Sign up here: https://espace.cern.ch/club-fitness/Lists/Test_Subscription/NewForm.aspx? Join the Party and dance yourself into shape at Marco + Marials Zumba Masterclass. Saturday 30 June 2012 from 15:00 to 16:30 Marco + Mariel’s Zumba Masterclass Where: 216 (Pump room – equipped with changing rooms and showers). What to wear: comfortable clothes and indoor sports shoes + bring a drink! How much: 25 chf Sign up here: https://espace.cern.ch/club-fitness/Lists/Zumba%20...

  17. Fitness Club

    CERN Multimedia

    Fitness Club

    2010-01-01

    Nordic Walking Please note that the subscriptions for the general fitness classes from July to December are open: Subscriptions general fitness classes Jul-Dec 2010 Sign-up to the Fitness Club mailing list here Nordic Walking: Sign-up to the Nordic Walking mailing list here Beginners Nordic walking lessons Monday Lunchtimes (rdv 12:20 for 12:30 departure) 13.09/20.09/27.09/04.10 11.10/18.10/08.11/15.11 22.11/29.11/06.12/20.12 Nordic walking lessons Tuesday evenings (rdv 17:50 for 18:00 departure) 07.09/14.09/21.09/28.09 05.10/12.10/19.10/26.10 Intermediate/Advanced Nordic walking outings (follow the nordic walking lessons before signing up for the outings) every Thursday from 16.09 - 16.12, excluding 28.10 and 09.12 Subscriptions and info: fitness.club@cern.ch  

  18. Fitness Club

    CERN Multimedia

    Fitness Club

    2012-01-01

      The CERN Fitness Club is pleased to announce its new early morning class which will be taking place on: Tuesdays from 24th April 07:30 to 08:15 216 (Pump Hall, close to entrance C) – Facilities include changing rooms and showers. The Classes: The early morning classes will focus on workouts which will help you build not only strength and stamina, but will also improve your balance, and coordination. Our qualified instructor Germana will accompany you throughout the workout  to ensure you stay motivated so you achieve the best results. Sign up and discover the best way to start your working day full of energy! How to subscribe? We invite you along to a FREE trial session, if you enjoy the activity, please sign up via our website: https://espace.cern.ch/club-fitness/Activities/SUBSCRIBE.aspx. * * * * * * * * Saturday 28th April Get in shape for the summer at our fitness workshop and zumba dance party: Fitness workshop with Germana 13:00 to 14:30 - 216 (Pump Hall) Price...

  19. Franchising reproductive health services.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephenson, Rob; Tsui, Amy Ong; Sulzbach, Sara; Bardsley, Phil; Bekele, Getachew; Giday, Tilahun; Ahmed, Rehana; Gopalkrishnan, Gopi; Feyesitan, Bamikale

    2004-12-01

    Networks of franchised health establishments, providing a standardized set of services, are being implemented in developing countries. This article examines associations between franchise membership and family planning and reproductive health outcomes for both the member provider and the client. Regression models are fitted examining associations between franchise membership and family planning and reproductive health outcomes at the service provider and client levels in three settings. Franchising has a positive association with both general and family planning client volumes, and the number of family planning brands available. Similar associations with franchise membership are not found for reproductive health service outcomes. In some settings, client satisfaction is higher at franchised than other types of health establishments, although the association between franchise membership and client outcomes varies across the settings. Franchise membership has apparent benefits for both the provider and the client, providing an opportunity to expand access to reproductive health services, although greater attention is needed to shift the focus from family planning to a broader reproductive health context.

  20. Franchising Reproductive Health Services

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephenson, Rob; Tsui, Amy Ong; Sulzbach, Sara; Bardsley, Phil; Bekele, Getachew; Giday, Tilahun; Ahmed, Rehana; Gopalkrishnan, Gopi; Feyesitan, Bamikale

    2004-01-01

    Objectives Networks of franchised health establishments, providing a standardized set of services, are being implemented in developing countries. This article examines associations between franchise membership and family planning and reproductive health outcomes for both the member provider and the client. Methods Regression models are fitted examining associations between franchise membership and family planning and reproductive health outcomes at the service provider and client levels in three settings. Results Franchising has a positive association with both general and family planning client volumes, and the number of family planning brands available. Similar associations with franchise membership are not found for reproductive health service outcomes. In some settings, client satisfaction is higher at franchised than other types of health establishments, although the association between franchise membership and client outcomes varies across the settings. Conclusions Franchise membership has apparent benefits for both the provider and the client, providing an opportunity to expand access to reproductive health services, although greater attention is needed to shift the focus from family planning to a broader reproductive health context. PMID:15544644

  1. The effects of constant and alternating temperatures on the reproductive potential, life span, and life expectancy of Anastrepha fraterculus (Wiedemann (Dipteria: Tephritidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. V. CARDOSO

    Full Text Available Ovarian development, oviposition, larval eclosion, ornithine decarboxylase (ODC activity, ovarian, testis and ejaculatory apodeme measurements (length, width, and area, and the number of spermatozoa of Anastrepha fraterculus (Wiedemann were analyzed at alternating (20º/6ºC and 20º/13°C and constant (6°C; 25°C temperatures. Life span and life expectancy were also analyzed for both genders. All the results suggest that temperature, especially alternating temperatures, increase not only male and female reproductive potential but also their life span and life expectancy. These changes can be a powerful strategy triggered by A. fraterculus as a means to survive the stressful temperature conditions found in winter in the apple production region in Brazil, enabling this species to increase its population density and cause apple damage when spring begins.

  2. The effects of constant and alternating temperatures on the reproductive potential, life span, and life expectancy of Anastrepha fraterculus (Wiedemann (Dipteria: Tephritidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    CARDOSO V. V.

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available Ovarian development, oviposition, larval eclosion, ornithine decarboxylase (ODC activity, ovarian, testis and ejaculatory apodeme measurements (length, width, and area, and the number of spermatozoa of Anastrepha fraterculus (Wiedemann were analyzed at alternating (20masculine/6masculineC and 20masculine/13degreesC and constant (6degreesC; 25degreesC temperatures. Life span and life expectancy were also analyzed for both genders. All the results suggest that temperature, especially alternating temperatures, increase not only male and female reproductive potential but also their life span and life expectancy. These changes can be a powerful strategy triggered by A. fraterculus as a means to survive the stressful temperature conditions found in winter in the apple production region in Brazil, enabling this species to increase its population density and cause apple damage when spring begins.

  3. Biocontrol Potential of Lariophagus distinguendus (Hymenoptera: Pteromalidae) Against Sitophilus granarius (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) at Low Temperatures: Reproduction and Parasitoid-Induced Mortality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Lise Stengård

    2007-01-01

    Lariophagus distinguendus Förster (Hymenoptera: Pteromalidae) has been suggested as a biological control agent against the granary weevil, Sitophilus granarius (L.), in grain stores. Information on the effect of low temperatures prevailing in grain stores is necessary to be able to predict...... the potential of this parasitoid against S. granarius in temperate regions, where grain is cooled with ambient air to achieve safe storage conditions. The influence of constant temperatures of 16, 18, and 20°C on life table parameters and parasitoid-induced mortality (PIM) was investigated in the laboratory. L...... is quicker than that of its host, estimated from the literature; and it kills many hosts in addition to those used for reproduction....

  4. Fish reproduction

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Rocha, Maria João; Arukwe, Augustine; Kapoor, B. G

    2008-01-01

    ... of reproductive systems is essential for such studies. Fishes comprise over 28,000 species, with a remarkable variability in morphology, physiology and environmental adaptation. Knowledge on fish reproduction is scattered across numerous sources that shows a dynamic research field. The Editors believe it to be an opportune moment for a...

  5. Fitness Club

    CERN Multimedia

    Fitness Club

    2012-01-01

    Nordic Walking Classes Sessions of four classes of one hour each are held on Tuesdays. RDV barracks parking at Entrance A, 10 minutes before class time. Session 1 =  11.09 / 18.09 / 25.09 / 02.10, 18:15 - 19:15 Session 2 = 25.09 / 02.10 / 09.10 / 16.10, 12:30 - 13:30 Session 3 = 23.10 / 30.10 / 06.11 / 13.11, 12:30 - 13:30 Session 4 = 20.11 / 27.11 / 04.12 / 11.12, 12:30 - 13:30 Prices 40 CHF per session + 10 CHF club membership 5 CHF/hour pole rental Check out our schedule and enroll at http://cern.ch/club-fitness   Hope to see you among us!  fitness.club@cern.ch In spring 2012 there was a long-awaited progress in CERN Fitness club. We have officially opened a Powerlifting @ CERN, and the number of members of the new section has been increasing since then reaching 70+ people in less than 4 months. Powerlifting is a strength sport, which is simple as 1-2-3 and efficient. The "1-2-3" are the three basic lifts (bench press...

  6. Detailed analysis of the male reproductive system in a potential bio-indicator species - The marine invertebrate Galeolaria caespitosa (Polychaeta: Serpulidae.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yonggang Lu

    Full Text Available For the first time, this study has systemically investigated the male reproductive system in a sessile broadcast-spawning marine invertebrate, Galeolaria caespitosa (Polychaeta: Serpulidae, which has significant potential as a bio-indicator species of coastal marine pollution. The abdomen of G. caespitosa was divided by intersegmental septa into over 80 trunk segments. Each segment served as a germinal chamber with a C-shaped gonadal arrangement consisting of several distinct compartments: a seminiferous epithelium (SE compartment located in the centre of the chamber, with each of its two ends connecting to a nurse cell (NC compartment and then an efferent duct (ED compartment. The SE compartment contained a multilayered seminiferous epithelium where spermatogenesis was initiated. Spermatids were released in pairs into the lumen of the SE compartment and then transported to the NC compartment where they underwent spermiogenesis with the support of secretory vesicles released by the nurse cells. Spermatozoa were stored in the ED compartment and subsequently released into the seawater through the vas deferens. Unlike vertebrates where germ cells differentiated in close proximity to the nurse cell population (i.e. Sertoli cells, the spermatogenic cells of G. caespitosa exhibited no direct contact with supporting cells at any spermatogenic stage. This finding suggested that the spermatogenesis in G. caespitosa was more dependent on intrinsic developmental programming than most species. Notwithstanding such differences, there were clear parallels between the male reproductive system of G. caespitosa and mammals, in terms of the structure and function. The independence of spermatogenic cells from supporting cells in G. caespitosa raised the possibility of inducing spermiogenesis in vitro, which would provide a useful tool to dissect the mechanisms underlying this complex cell differentiation process in invertebrates and other higher order animals.

  7. Fitness club

    CERN Multimedia

    Fitness club

    2013-01-01

    Nordic Walking Classes New session of 4 classes of 1 hour each will be held on Tuesdays in May 2013. Meet at the CERN barracks parking at Entrance A, 10 minutes before class time. Dates and time: 07.05, 14.05, 21.05 and 28.05, fom  12 h 30 to 13 h 30 Prices: 40 CHF per session + 10 CHF club membership – 5 CHF / hour pole rental Check out our schedule and enroll at http://cern.ch/club-fitness Hope to see you among us! 

  8. The Explanatory Value of Inclusive Fitness for Evolutionary Theory

    OpenAIRE

    Rubin, Hannah

    2017-01-01

    At the heart of evolutionary theory is the concept of 'fitness', which is, standardly, an organism's reproductive success. Many evolutionary theorists argue, however, that to explain the evolution of social traits, such as altruism, we must use a different notion of fitness. This 'inclusive fitness', which includes the reproductive success of relatives, is seen as indispensable for studying social evolution. Recently, however, both biologists and philosophers have critically scrutinized its s...

  9. Nanoparticle-mediated drug delivery to treat infections in the female reproductive tract: evaluation of experimental systems and the potential for mathematical modeling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sims, Lee B; Frieboes, Hermann B; Steinbach-Rankins, Jill M

    2018-01-01

    A variety of drug-delivery platforms have been employed to deliver therapeutic agents across cervicovaginal mucus (CVM) and the vaginal mucosa, offering the capability to increase the longevity and retention of active agents to treat infections of the female reproductive tract (FRT). Nanoparticles (NPs) have been shown to improve retention, diffusion, and cell-specific targeting via specific surface modifications, relative to other delivery platforms. In particular, polymeric NPs represent a promising option that has shown improved distribution through the CVM. These NPs are typically fabricated from nontoxic, non-inflammatory, US Food and Drug Administration-approved polymers that improve biocompatibility. This review summarizes recent experimental studies that have evaluated NP transport in the FRT, and highlights research areas that more thoroughly and efficiently inform polymeric NP design, including mathematical modeling. An overview of the in vitro, ex vivo, and in vivo NP studies conducted to date - whereby transport parameters are determined, extrapolated, and validated - is presented first. The impact of different NP design features on transport through the FRT is summarized, and gaps that exist due to the limitations of iterative experimentation alone are identified. The potential of mathematical modeling to complement the characterization and evaluation of diffusion and transport of delivery vehicles and active agents through the CVM and mucosa is discussed. Lastly, potential advancements combining experimental and mathematical knowledge are suggested to inform next-generation NP designs, such that infections in the FRT may be more effectively treated.

  10. Oosorption in response to poor food: complexity in the trade-off between reproduction and survival

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Patricia J; Attisano, Alfredo

    2011-01-01

    Plasticity in reproductive physiology is one avenue by which environmental signals, such as poor quality food, can be coordinated with adaptive responses. Insects have the ability to resorb oocytes that are not oviposited. Oosorption is proposed to be an adaptive mechanism to optimize fitness in hostile environments, recouping resources that might otherwise be lost, and reinvesting them into future reproductive potential. We tested the hypothesis that oosorption is an evolved mechanism by which females can reallocate resources from current reproductive effort to survival and future reproduction, when conditions for reproduction are poor, by examining the reproductive physiology and life-history outcome under poor quality food in populations of the milkweed bug (Oncopeltus fasciatus) that have adapted to live on sunflower seed. Females fed a diet of pumpkin seeds, known to be a poor host food, had higher levels of ovarian apoptosis (oosorption), lower reproductive output, but no reduction in life span under poor nutrition, as predicted under the oosorption hypothesis. However, the schedule of reproduction was surprising given the “wait to reproduce” assumption of oosorption as early fecundity was unaffected. PMID:22393481

  11. Including irrigation in niche modelling of the invasive wasp Vespula germanica (Fabricius) improves model fit to predict potential for further spread.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Villiers, Marelize; Kriticos, Darren J; Veldtman, Ruan

    2017-01-01

    The European wasp, Vespula germanica (Fabricius) (Hymenoptera: Vespidae), is of Palaearctic origin, being native to Europe, northern Africa and Asia, and introduced into North America, Chile, Argentina, Iceland, Ascension Island, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand. Due to its polyphagous nature and scavenging behaviour, V. germanica threatens agriculture and silviculture, and negatively affects biodiversity, while its aggressive nature and venomous sting pose a health risk to humans. In areas with warmer winters and longer summers, queens and workers can survive the winter months, leading to the build-up of large nests during the following season; thereby increasing the risk posed by this species. To prevent or prepare for such unwanted impacts it is important to know where the wasp may be able to establish, either through natural spread or through introduction as a result of human transport. Distribution data from Argentina and Australia, and seasonal phenology data from Argentina were used to determine the potential distribution of V. germanica using CLIMEX modelling. In contrast to previous models, the influence of irrigation on its distribution was also investigated. Under a natural rainfall scenario, the model showed similarities to previous models. When irrigation is applied, dry stress is alleviated, leading to larger areas modelled climatically suitable compared with previous models, which provided a better fit with the actual distribution of the species. The main areas at risk of invasion by V. germanica include western USA, Mexico, small areas in Central America and in the north-western region of South America, eastern Brazil, western Russia, north-western China, Japan, the Mediterranean coastal regions of North Africa, and parts of southern and eastern Africa.

  12. Including irrigation in niche modelling of the invasive wasp Vespula germanica (Fabricius improves model fit to predict potential for further spread.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marelize de Villiers

    Full Text Available The European wasp, Vespula germanica (Fabricius (Hymenoptera: Vespidae, is of Palaearctic origin, being native to Europe, northern Africa and Asia, and introduced into North America, Chile, Argentina, Iceland, Ascension Island, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand. Due to its polyphagous nature and scavenging behaviour, V. germanica threatens agriculture and silviculture, and negatively affects biodiversity, while its aggressive nature and venomous sting pose a health risk to humans. In areas with warmer winters and longer summers, queens and workers can survive the winter months, leading to the build-up of large nests during the following season; thereby increasing the risk posed by this species. To prevent or prepare for such unwanted impacts it is important to know where the wasp may be able to establish, either through natural spread or through introduction as a result of human transport. Distribution data from Argentina and Australia, and seasonal phenology data from Argentina were used to determine the potential distribution of V. germanica using CLIMEX modelling. In contrast to previous models, the influence of irrigation on its distribution was also investigated. Under a natural rainfall scenario, the model showed similarities to previous models. When irrigation is applied, dry stress is alleviated, leading to larger areas modelled climatically suitable compared with previous models, which provided a better fit with the actual distribution of the species. The main areas at risk of invasion by V. germanica include western USA, Mexico, small areas in Central America and in the north-western region of South America, eastern Brazil, western Russia, north-western China, Japan, the Mediterranean coastal regions of North Africa, and parts of southern and eastern Africa.

  13. Veterinary management of snake reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stahl, Scott J

    2002-09-01

    The reptile veterinarian should approach the breeder with a comprehensive plan involving a review of proper husbandry, nutrition, record keeping, and a thorough prebreeding evaluation of the snakes. In addition, an evaluation of the reproductive strategy, assistance with confirming and monitoring gestation, and a review of potential reproductive complications will help to prepare the snake owner for a successful breeding season.

  14. The ecology and evolutionary endocrinology of reproduction in the human female.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vitzthum, Virginia J

    2009-01-01

    Human reproductive ecology (HRE) is the study of the mechanisms that link variation in reproductive traits with variation in local habitats. Empirical and theoretical contributions from biological anthropology, physiology, and demography have established the foundation necessary for developing a comprehensive understanding, grounded in life history theory (LHT), of temporal, individual, and populational variation in women's reproductive functioning. LHT posits that natural selection leads to the evolution of mechanisms that tend to allocate resources to the competing demands of growth, reproduction, and survival such that fitness is locally maximized. (That is, among alternative allocation patterns exhibited in a population, those having the highest inclusive fitness will become more common over generational time.) Hence, strategic modulation of reproductive effort is potentially adaptive because investment in a new conception may risk one's own survival, future reproductive opportunities, and/or current offspring survival. The hypothalamic-pituitary-ovarian (HPO) axis is the principal neuroendocrine pathway by which the human female modulates reproductive functioning according to the changing conditions in her habitat. Adjustments of reproductive investment in a potential conception are manifested in temporal and individual variation in ovarian cycle length, ovulation, hormone levels, and the probability of conception. Understanding the extent and causes of adaptive and non-adaptive variation in ovarian functioning is fundamental to ascertaining the proximate and remote determinants of human reproductive patterns. In this review I consider what is known and what still needs to be learned of the ecology of women's reproductive biology, beginning with a discussion of the principal explanatory frameworks in HRE and the biometry of ovarian functioning. Turning next to empirical studies, it is evident that marked variation between cycles, women, and populations is the

  15. Growth and reproductive potential of Eisenia foetida (Sav) on various zoo animal dungs after two methods of pre-composting followed by vermicomposting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pérez-Godínez, Edmundo Arturo; Lagunes-Zarate, Jorge; Corona-Hernández, Juan; Barajas-Aceves, Martha

    2017-06-01

    Disposal of animal manure without treatment can be harmful to the environment. In this study, samples of four zoo animal dungs and one horse dung were pre-composted in two ways: (a) traditional composting and (b) bokashi pre-composting for 1month, followed by vermicomposting for 3months. The permanence (PEf) and reproductive potential (RP) of Eisenia foetida as well as the quality of vermicompost were evaluated. The PEf values and RP index of E. foetida were higher for samples pre-composted using the traditional composting method (98.7-88% and 31.85-16.27%, respectively) followed by vermicomposting (92.7-72.7% and 22.96-13.51%, respectively), when compared with those for bokashi pre-composted samples followed by vermicomposting, except for the horse dung sample (100% for both the parameters). The values of electrical conductivity (EC), cation exchange capacity (CEC), organic C, total N, available P, C/N ratio, and pH showed that both treatments achieved the norms of vermicompost (bokashi pre-composting followed by vermicomposting produced the highest values (98.7-70.7%, 97.67-96.65%, and 2.7-1.97%, respectively), when compared with the other method adapted in this study. Nevertheless, further studies with plants for plant growth evaluation are needed to assess the benefits and limitations of these two pre-composting methods prior to vermicomposting. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. In-vitro developmental potential of individual mouse blastomeres cultured with and without zona pellucida: future implications for human assisted reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Illmensee, K; Kaskar, K; Zavos, P M

    2006-08-01

    This study was designed to compare the developmental potential of individual blastomeres derived from 2-, 4-, 6- and 8-cell mouse embryos cultured with and without zona pellucida (ZP). In the first series, one, three, five and seven blastomeres were biopsied from 2-, 4-, 6- and 8-cell embryos respectively, and inserted individually into empty ZP recipients, leaving the remaining blastomere within its original ZP. In the second series, the same protocol was used except that the biopsied blastomeres were cultured without ZP and compared with the remaining blastomere within its original ZP. For the first series, individual blastomeres derived from 2-, 4-, 6- and 8-cell embryos cultured with ZP showed blastocyst development of 82.4, 68.6, 44.4 and 23.1% respectively, with corresponding hatching rates of 70.6, 60.0, 25.9 and 7.7%. For the second series, individual blastomeres cultured without ZP progressed with blastocyst development of 73.3, 64.5, 35.7 and 22.7% respectively. Blastocyst multiplication was achieved most efficiently when using individual blastomeres from 4- and 6-cell embryos. This is the first report on comparative in-vitro propagation of single blastomeres derived from various cleavage stages in a mammalian species. Blastomere cloning with its multiple applications may be envisaged for human assisted reproductive technologies.

  17. Progeny reproduction

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mashneva, N.I.

    1984-01-01

    Studies on clarification of importance of different harmful factors of radiation and chemical nature on the function of progeny reproduction, growth and development are presented. Intake of radionuclides to organism, of white mices and rats in concentrations corresponding to 10 6 PCsub(s) ( 90 Sr, 210 Po, 210 Pb and other) is shown to result in 100% sterility of females, 10 5 -10 4 PCsub(s) concentrations cause damaging effect of different degrees of expression at later stages of effect. Smaller contents of radionuclides (10 3 -10 2 PCsub(s)) did not result in noticeable changes in reproductivity of animals. Similar regularities were observed under effect of different concentrations of chemical agent. Some peculiarities of animal physiology should be taken into account to obtain data of estimation of damaging effect of harmful factors on reproduction function

  18. Transgenerational shifts in reproduction hormesis in green peach aphid exposed to low concentrations of imidacloprid.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Murali-Mohan Ayyanath

    Full Text Available Hormesis is a biphasic phenomenon that in toxicology is characterized by low-dose stimulation and high-dose inhibition. It has been observed in a wide range of organisms in response to many chemical stressors, including insects exposed to pesticides, with potential repercussions for agriculture and pest management. To address questions related to the nature of the dose-response and potential consequences on biological fitness, we examined transgenerational hormesis in the green peach aphid, Myzus persicae, when exposed to sublethal concentrations of the insecticide imidacloprid. A hormetic response in the form of increased reproduction was consistently observed and a model previously developed to test for hormesis adequately fit some of our data. However, the nature of the dose-response differed within and across generations depending upon the duration and mode of exposure. Decreased reproduction in intermediate generations confirmed that fitness tradeoffs were a consequence of the hormetic response. However, recovery to levels of reproduction equal to that of controls in subsequent generations and significantly greater total reproduction after four generations suggested that biological fitness was increased by exposure to low concentrations of the insecticide, even when insects were continuously exposed to the stressor. This was especially evident in a greenhouse experiment where the instantaneous rate of population increase almost doubled and total aphid production more than quadrupled when aphids were exposed to potato plants systemically treated with low amounts of imidacloprid. Our results show that although fitness tradeoffs do occur with hormetic responses, this does not necessarily compromise overall biological fitness.

  19. Reproductive epidemiology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Olsen, Jørn; Nøhr, Ellen Aagaard

    2010-01-01

    Reproductive health covers a broad category of health and disease conditions, according to the Cairo Statement. This chapter focuses on subfecundity fertility, fetal death, malformations, pregnancy complications, sexual health, and diseases that may have their origin in fetal life, but which will...

  20. Honeymoon, medical treatment or big business? An analysis of the meanings of the term "reproductive tourism" in German and Israeli public media discourses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bassan, Sharon; Michaelsen, Merle A

    2013-08-20

    Infertile couples that travel to another country for reproductive treatment do not refer to themselves as "reproductive tourists". They might even be offended by this term. "Tourism" is a metaphor with hidden connotations. We will analyze these connotations in public media discourses on "reproductive tourism" in Israel and Germany. We chose to focus on these two countries since legal, ethical and religious restrictions give couples a similar motivation to travel for reproductive care, while the cultural backgrounds and conceptions of reproduction are different. Our research shows that the use of the metaphor "reproductive treatment" and its hidden messages depends on the writers' intention and the target population. Although the phenomenon of patients travelling for reproductive treatment can fit into the definitions of tourism, the term emphasizes aspects that do not reflect patients' reality. In both the German and the Israeli public media debate the term "reproductive tourism" is either used to criticize the economic aspects of the phenomenon or to attract patients as potential clients. Ethicists should be cautious when borrowing metaphors like "reproductive tourism" from the public debate. Our findings support Penning's suggestion to use instead an unloaded term like cross-border reproductive care to describe the phenomenon in a more neutral way and to make it explicit whenever criticism is necessary.

  1. Honeymoon, medical treatment or big business? An analysis of the meanings of the term “reproductive tourism” in German and Israeli public media discourses

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    Background/Introduction Infertile couples that travel to another country for reproductive treatment do not refer to themselves as “reproductive tourists”. They might even be offended by this term. “Tourism” is a metaphor with hidden connotations. We will analyze these connotations in public media discourses on “reproductive tourism” in Israel and Germany. We chose to focus on these two countries since legal, ethical and religious restrictions give couples a similar motivation to travel for reproductive care, while the cultural backgrounds and conceptions of reproduction are different. Results Our research shows that the use of the metaphor “reproductive treatment” and its hidden messages depends on the writers’ intention and the target population. Although the phenomenon of patients travelling for reproductive treatment can fit into the definitions of tourism, the term emphasizes aspects that do not reflect patients’ reality. In both the German and the Israeli public media debate the term “reproductive tourism” is either used to criticize the economic aspects of the phenomenon or to attract patients as potential clients. Conclusions Ethicists should be cautious when borrowing metaphors like “reproductive tourism” from the public debate. Our findings support Penning’s suggestion to use instead an unloaded term like cross-border reproductive care to describe the phenomenon in a more neutral way and to make it explicit whenever criticism is necessary. PMID:23962355

  2. Wave field synthesis, adaptive wave field synthesis and ambisonics using decentralized transformed control: Potential applications to sound field reproduction and active noise control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gauthier, Philippe-Aubert; Berry, Alain; Woszczyk, Wieslaw

    2005-09-01

    Sound field reproduction finds applications in listening to prerecorded music or in synthesizing virtual acoustics. The objective is to recreate a sound field in a listening environment. Wave field synthesis (WFS) is a known open-loop technology which assumes that the reproduction environment is anechoic. Classical WFS, therefore, does not perform well in a real reproduction space such as room. Previous work has suggested that it is physically possible to reproduce a progressive wave field in-room situation using active control approaches. In this paper, a formulation of adaptive wave field synthesis (AWFS) introduces practical possibilities for an adaptive sound field reproduction combining WFS and active control (with WFS departure penalization) with a limited number of error sensors. AWFS includes WFS and closed-loop ``Ambisonics'' as limiting cases. This leads to the modification of the multichannel filtered-reference least-mean-square (FXLMS) and the filtered-error LMS (FELMS) adaptive algorithms for AWFS. Decentralization of AWFS for sound field reproduction is introduced on the basis of sources' and sensors' radiation modes. Such decoupling may lead to decentralized control of source strength distributions and may reduce computational burden of the FXLMS and the FELMS algorithms used for AWFS. [Work funded by NSERC, NATEQ, Université de Sherbrooke and VRQ.] Ultrasound/Bioresponse to

  3. Environmental impacts on reproductive health and fertility

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Woodruff, T. J

    2010-01-01

    .... Focusing on exposures to environmental contaminants, particularly during critical periods in development and their potential effects on all aspects of future reproductive life-course, this book...

  4. Hamiltonian inclusive fitness: a fitter fitness concept.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costa, James T

    2013-01-01

    In 1963-1964 W. D. Hamilton introduced the concept of inclusive fitness, the only significant elaboration of Darwinian fitness since the nineteenth century. I discuss the origin of the modern fitness concept, providing context for Hamilton's discovery of inclusive fitness in relation to the puzzle of altruism. While fitness conceptually originates with Darwin, the term itself stems from Spencer and crystallized quantitatively in the early twentieth century. Hamiltonian inclusive fitness, with Price's reformulation, provided the solution to Darwin's 'special difficulty'-the evolution of caste polymorphism and sterility in social insects. Hamilton further explored the roles of inclusive fitness and reciprocation to tackle Darwin's other difficulty, the evolution of human altruism. The heuristically powerful inclusive fitness concept ramified over the past 50 years: the number and diversity of 'offspring ideas' that it has engendered render it a fitter fitness concept, one that Darwin would have appreciated.

  5. The enchytraeid reproduction test (ERT): A potentially quick and affordable tool for the assessment of metal contaminated soils in emerging economies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Voua Otomo, Patricks; Wahl, Jurie; Maboeta, Mark S

    2013-11-01

    The enchytraeid reproduction test (ERT) was used to assess the ecotoxicity of selected mine tailings and agricultural soils from South Africa. The mine tailings had higher cumulative metal concentrations than agricultural soils. The most contaminated mine tailings significantly reduced the survival of the oligochaete Enchytraeus doerjesi whose reproduction was suppressed in all mine waste substrates. Because it reliably singled out the most contaminated substrate and was found easy to perform, we suggest that the ERT could be a quick and affordable tool for assigning intervention values for soil remediation in emerging economies such as South Africa.

  6. Contextual modulation of social and endocrine correlates of fitness: insights from the life history of a sex changing fish

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Devaleena S Pradhan

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Steroid hormones are critical regulators of reproductive life history, and the steroid sensitive traits (morphology, behavior, physiology associated with particular life history stages can have substantial fitness consequences for an organism. Hormones, behavior and fitness are reciprocally associated and can be used in an integrative fashion to understand how the environment impacts organismal function. To address the fitness component, we highlight the importance of using reliable proxies of reproductive success, when studying proximate regulation of reproductive phenotypes. To understand the mechanisms by which the endocrine system regulates phenotype, we discuss the use of particular endocrine proxies and the need for appropriate functional interpretation of each. Lastly, in any experimental paradigm, the responses of animals vary based on the subtle differences in environmental and social context and this must also be considered. We explore these different levels of analyses by focusing on the fascinating life history transitions exhibited by the bi-directionally hermaphroditic fish, Lythrypnus dalli. Sex changing fish are excellent models for providing a deeper understanding of the fitness consequences associated with the behavioral and endocrine variation. We close by proposing that local regulation of steroids is one potential mechanism that allows for the expression of novel phenotypes that can be characteristic of specific life history stages. A comparative species approach will facilitate progress in understanding the diversity of mechanisms underlying the contextual regulation of phenotypes and their associated fitness correlates.

  7. Contextual modulation of social and endocrine correlates of fitness: insights from the life history of a sex changing fish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pradhan, Devaleena S; Solomon-Lane, Tessa K; Grober, Matthew S

    2015-01-01

    Steroid hormones are critical regulators of reproductive life history, and the steroid sensitive traits (morphology, behavior, physiology) associated with particular life history stages can have substantial fitness consequences for an organism. Hormones, behavior and fitness are reciprocally associated and can be used in an integrative fashion to understand how the environment impacts organismal function. To address the fitness component, we highlight the importance of using reliable proxies of reproductive success when studying proximate regulation of reproductive phenotypes. To understand the mechanisms by which the endocrine system regulates phenotype, we discuss the use of particular endocrine proxies and the need for appropriate functional interpretation of each. Lastly, in any experimental paradigm, the responses of animals vary based on the subtle differences in environmental and social context and this must also be considered. We explore these different levels of analyses by focusing on the fascinating life history transitions exhibited by the bi-directionally hermaphroditic fish, Lythrypnus dalli. Sex changing fish are excellent models for providing a deeper understanding of the fitness consequences associated with behavioral and endocrine variation. We close by proposing that local regulation of steroids is one potential mechanism that allows for the expression of novel phenotypes that can be characteristic of specific life history stages. A comparative species approach will facilitate progress in understanding the diversity of mechanisms underlying the contextual regulation of phenotypes and their associated fitness correlates.

  8. Rethinking reproductive "tourism" as reproductive "exile".

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inhorn, Marcia C; Patrizio, Pasquale

    2009-09-01

    Whereas reproductive "tourism" implies leisure travel, reproductive "exile" bespeaks the numerous difficulties and constraints faced by infertile patients who are "forced" to travel globally for assisted reproduction. Given this reality, it is time to rethink the language of "reproductive tourism," replacing it with more accurate and patient-centered terms.

  9. Body size, performance and fitness in galapagos marine iguanas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wikelski, Martin; Romero, L Michael

    2003-07-01

    Complex organismal traits such as body size are influenced by innumerable selective pressures, making the prediction of evolutionary trajectories for those traits difficult. A potentially powerful way to predict fitness in natural systems is to study the composite response of individuals in terms of performance measures, such as foraging or reproductive performance. Once key performance measures are identified in this top-down approach, we can determine the underlying physiological mechanisms and gain predictive power over long-term evolutionary processes. Here we use marine iguanas as a model system where body size differs by more than one order of magnitude between island populations. We identified foraging efficiency as the main performance measure that constrains body size. Mechanistically, foraging performance is determined by food pasture height and the thermal environment, influencing intake and digestion. Stress hormones may be a flexible way of influencing an individual's response to low-food situations that may be caused by high population density, famines, or anthropogenic disturbances like oil spills. Reproductive performance, on the other hand, increases with body size and is mediated by higher survival of larger hatchlings from larger females and increased mating success of larger males. Reproductive performance of males may be adjusted via plastic hormonal feedback mechanisms that allow individuals to assess their social rank annually within the current population size structure. When integrated, these data suggest that reproductive performance favors increased body size (influenced by reproductive hormones), with an overall limit imposed by foraging performance (influenced by stress hormones). Based on our mechanistic understanding of individual performances we predicted an evolutionary increase in maximum body size caused by global warming trends. We support this prediction using specimens collected during 1905. We also show in a common

  10. A guide for evaluating the adequacy of oak advance reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivan L. Sander; Paul S. Johnson; Richard F. Watt

    1976-01-01

    Gives instructions for conducting an inventory of oak advance reproduction prior to final harvest cutting to evaluate the potential for successful oak reproduction in new stands. The potential for oak stump sprouting is also considered.

  11. Reproductive Consequences of Nest Site Use in Fork-tailed Storm-Petrels in the Aleutian Islands, Alaska: Potential Lasting Effects of an Introduced Predator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brie A. Drummond

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available We examined the reproductive consequences of differential nest site use in Fork-tailed Storm-Petrels (Oceanodroma furcata in the Aleutian Islands, Alaska, where birds on islands where foxes were introduced nest in rocky substrate rather than in typical soil habitat. We investigated how physical and microclimatic nest site characteristics influenced storm-petrel breeding success 20 years after fox removal. We then examined whether those nest site characteristics that affected success were related to the amount of rock that composed the nest. In both years of our study, nest temperature had the strongest influence on chick survival and overall reproductive success, appearing in all the top models and alone explaining 14-35% of the variation in chick survival. The relationship between reproductive success and nest temperature was positive in both years, with higher survival in warmer nests. In turn, the best predictor of nest temperature was the amount of rock that composed the site. Rockier nests had colder average temperatures, which were driven by lower daily minimum temperatures, compared to nests with more soil. Thus, the rockiness of the nest site appeared to affect chick survival and overall reproductive success through its influence on nest temperature. This study suggests that the use of rocky nest sites, presumed to be a result of historic predation from introduced foxes, could decrease breeding success in this recovering population, and thus be a long-lasting effect of introduced predators.

  12. Selective Reproduction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Svendsen, Mette N.

    2015-01-01

    This article employs a multi-species perspective in investigating how life's worth is negotiated in the field of neonatology in Denmark. It does so by comparing decision-making processes about human infants in the Danish neonatal intensive care unit with those associated with piglets who serve as...... as expectations within linear or predictive time frames are key markers in both sites. Exploring selective reproductive processes across human infants and research piglets can help us uncover aspects of the cultural production of viability that we would not otherwise see or acknowledge....

  13. Variation in the post-mating fitness landscape in fruit flies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fricke, C; Chapman, T

    2017-07-01

    Sperm competition is pervasive and fundamental to determining a male's overall fitness. Sperm traits and seminal fluid proteins (Sfps) are key factors. However, studies of sperm competition may often exclude females that fail to remate during a defined period. Hence, the resulting data sets contain fewer data from the potentially fittest males that have most success in preventing female remating. It is also important to consider a male's reproductive success before entering sperm competition, which is a major contributor to fitness. The exclusion of these data can both hinder our understanding of the complete fitness landscapes of competing males and lessen our ability to assess the contribution of different determinants of reproductive success to male fitness. We addressed this here, using the Drosophila melanogaster model system, by (i) capturing a comprehensive range of intermating intervals that define the fitness of interacting wild-type males and (ii) analysing outcomes of sperm competition using selection analyses. We conducted additional tests using males lacking the sex peptide (SP) ejaculate component vs. genetically matched (SP + ) controls. This allowed us to assess the comprehensive fitness effects of this important Sfp on sperm competition. The results showed a signature of positive, linear selection in wild-type and SP + control males on the length of the intermating interval and on male sperm competition defence. However, the fitness surface for males lacking SP was distinct, with local fitness peaks depending on contrasting combinations of remating intervals and offspring numbers. The results suggest that there are alternative routes to success in sperm competition and provide an explanation for the maintenance of variation in sperm competition traits. © 2017 The Authors. Journal of Evolutionary Biology published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of European Society for Evolutionary Biology.

  14. At the crossroads of physiology and ecology: food supply and the timing of avian reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davies, Scott; Deviche, Pierre

    2014-06-01

    This article is part of a Special Issue “Energy Balance”. The decision of when to breed is crucial to the reproductive success and fitness of seasonally breeding birds. The availability of food for adults prior to breeding has long been thought to play a critical role in timing the initiation of seasonal reproductive events, in particular laying. However, unequivocal evidence for such a role remains limited and the physiological mechanisms by which an increase in food availability results in seasonal activation of the reproductive system are largely speculative. This lack of mechanistic information partly reflects a lack of integration of ecological and physiological approaches to study seasonal reproduction. Indeed, most work pertaining to the role of food availability for adults on the timing of avian reproduction has been ecological and has focused almost exclusively on female traits associated with reproductive timing (e.g., lay date and clutch size). By contrast, most work on the physiological bases of the relationship between food availability and the timing of reproduction has investigated male traits associated with reproductive development (e.g., reproductive hormones and gonadal development). To advance our understanding of these topics, we review the role of proximate factors including food availability, social factors, and ambient temperature in the control of breeding decisions, and discuss the role of three potential candidates (leptin, glucocorticoids, and GnIH-neuropeptide Y) that may mediate the effects of food availability on these decisions. We emphasize that future progress in this area is heavily contingent upon the use of physiology-based approaches and their integration into current ecological frameworks. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  15. Formalizing Darwinism and inclusive fitness theory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grafen, Alan

    2009-11-12

    Inclusive fitness maximization is a basic building block for biological contributions to any theory of the evolution of society. There is a view in mathematical population genetics that nothing is caused to be maximized in the process of natural selection, but this is explained as arising from a misunderstanding about the meaning of fitness maximization. Current theoretical work on inclusive fitness is discussed, with emphasis on the author's 'formal Darwinism project'. Generally, favourable conclusions are drawn about the validity of assuming fitness maximization, but the need for continuing work is emphasized, along with the possibility that substantive exceptions may be uncovered. The formal Darwinism project aims more ambitiously to represent in a formal mathematical framework the central point of Darwin's Origin of Species, that the mechanical processes of inheritance and reproduction can give rise to the appearance of design, and it is a fitting ambition in Darwin's bicentenary year to capture his most profound discovery in the lingua franca of science.

  16. Born-Mayer type molybdenum-helium and helium-helium interaction potentials, fitted to the results of the helium desorption experiments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Heugten, W.F.W.M. van; Veen, A. van; Caspers, L.M.

    1979-01-01

    Classes of Born-Mayer type Mo-He and He-He potentials have been derived from helium desorption experiments. The classes are described by linear relations between the Born-Mayer parameters A and b. For computer simulations the Mo-He potential phisub(MoHe)(r)=exp (6.5-3.63 r) and the He-He potential phisub(HeHe)(r)=exp(5.3-5.51 r) are proposed. (Auth.)

  17. Normal Female Reproductive Anatomy

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... historical Searches are case-insensitive Reproductive System, Female, Anatomy Add to My Pictures View /Download : Small: 720x756 ... Large: 3000x3150 View Download Title: Reproductive System, Female, Anatomy Description: Anatomy of the female reproductive system; drawing ...

  18. Reproduction, physiology and biochemistry

    Science.gov (United States)

    This chapter summarizes fundamental knowledge and recent discoveries about the reproduction, physiology and biochemistry of plant-parasitic nematodes. Various types of reproduction are reviewed, including sexual reproduction and mitotic and meiotic parthenogenesis. Although much is known about the p...

  19. Maladaptive learning and memory in hybrids as a reproductive isolating barrier.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rice, Amber M; McQuillan, Michael A

    2018-05-30

    Selection against hybrid offspring, or postzygotic reproductive isolation, maintains species boundaries in the face of gene flow from hybridization. In this review, we propose that maladaptive learning and memory in hybrids is an important, but overlooked form of postzygotic reproductive isolation. Although a role for learning in premating isolation has been supported, whether learning deficiencies can contribute to postzygotic isolation has rarely been tested. We argue that the novel genetic combinations created by hybridization have the potential to impact learning and memory abilities through multiple possible mechanisms, and that any displacement from optima in these traits is likely to have fitness consequences. We review evidence supporting the potential for hybridization to affect learning and memory, and evidence of links between learning abilities and fitness. Finally, we suggest several avenues for future research. Given the importance of learning for fitness, especially in novel and unpredictable environments, maladaptive learning and memory in hybrids may be an increasingly important source of postzygotic reproductive isolation. © 2018 The Author(s).

  20. Physical Fitness Assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valdes, Alice

    This document presents baseline data on physical fitness that provides an outline for assessing the physical fitness of students. It consists of 4 tasks and a 13-item questionnaire on fitness-related behaviors. The fitness test evaluates cardiorespiratory endurance by a steady state jog; muscular strength and endurance with a two-minute bent-knee…

  1. Unge, sundhed og fitness

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Jens-Ole

    2003-01-01

    Artiklen redegør for udbredelsen af fitness blandt unge og diskuterer, hvor det er blevet så populært at dyrke fitness.......Artiklen redegør for udbredelsen af fitness blandt unge og diskuterer, hvor det er blevet så populært at dyrke fitness....

  2. Variable mycorrhizal benefits on the reproductive output of Geranium sylvaticum, with special emphasis on the intermediate phenotype.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varga, S; Kytöviita, M-M

    2014-03-01

    In several gynodioecious species, intermediate sex between female and hermaphrodite has been reported, but few studies have investigated fitness parameters of this intermediate phenotype. Here, we examined the interactions between plant sex and arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungal species affecting the reproductive output of Geranium sylvaticum, a sexually polymorphic plant species with frequent intermediate sexes between females and hermaphrodites, using a common garden experiment. Flowering phenology, AM colonisation levels and several plant vegetative and reproductive parameters, including seed and pollen production, were measured. Differences among sexes were detected in flowering, fruit set, pollen production and floral size. The two AM species used in the present work had different effects on plant fitness parameters. One AM species increased female fitness through increasing seed number and seed mass, while the other species reduced seed mass in all sexes investigated. AM fungi did not affect intermediate and hermaphrodite pollen content in anthers. The three sexes in G. sylvaticum did not differ in their reproductive output in terms of total seed production, but hermaphrodites had potentially larger fathering ability than intermediates due to higher anther number. The ultimate female function--seed production--did not differ among the sexes, but one of the AM fungi used potentially decreased host plant fitness. In addition, in the intermediate sex, mycorrhizal symbiosis functioned similarly in females as in hermaphrodites. © 2013 German Botanical Society and The Royal Botanical Society of the Netherlands.

  3. Theoretically unprejudiced fits to proton scattering

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kobos, A.M.; Mackintosh, R.S.

    1979-01-01

    By using a spline interpolation method applied to all components of the proton optical potential we have fitted elastic scattering from 40 Ca and from 16 O at a range of energies. The potentials are highly oscillatory and we have shown that similar oscillations are found when the spline fitting procedure is applied to pseudo-data generated from potentials of known l-dependence. Moreover, we show how to find an l-independent potential equivalent to one that is l-dependent and we find that it is oscillatory and that various characteristic features of empirical spline fit potentials can be explained. Thus, by fitting the data with model indenpendt l-independent potentials we have found support for the contention that the nucleon optical potential should be viewed as being l-dependent. This work may be regarded as an example of the kind of physical information that can be gained by pursuing exact fits to proton elastic scattering data

  4. Determination of pyruvate and lactate as potential biomarkers of embryo viability in assisted reproduction by capillary electrophoresis with contactless conductivity detection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mádr, Aleš; Celá, Andrea; Klejdus, Bořivoj; Pelcová, Marta; Crha, Igor; Žáková, Jana; Glatz, Zdeněk

    2015-06-01

    Human-assisted reproduction is increasing in importance due to the constantly rising number of couples suffering from infertility issue. A key step in in vitro fertilization is the proper assessment of embryo viability in order to select the embryo with the highest likelihood of resulting in a pregnancy. This study proposes a method based on CE with contactless conductivity detection for the determination of pyruvate and lactate in spent culture media used in human-assisted reproduction. A fused-silica capillary of 64.0 cm total length and 50 μm inner diameter was used. The inner capillary wall was modified by the coating of successive layers of the ionic polymers polybrene and dextran sulfate to reverse EOF. The BGE was composed of 10 mM MES/lithium hydroxide, pH 6.50. The sample was injected by pressure 50 mbar for 18 s, separation voltage was set to -24 kV, and capillary temperature to 15°C. The presented method requires only 2 μL of the culture medium, with LODs for pyruvate and lactate of 0.03 and 0.02 μM, respectively. The results demonstrated the method's suitability for the analysis of spent culture media to support embryo viability assessment by light microscopy, providing information about key metabolites of the energy metabolism of a developing embryo. © 2015 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  5. Reproductive desires and intentions of HIV‑positive women of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Key words: HIV‑positive women of reproductive age; Jos; reproductive intention; serodiscordant or ... with plasma viral RNA suppression with HAART, can reduce the risk of ..... Evalution of sperm washing as a potential method of reducing.

  6. Cost of reproduction in a long-lived bird: incubation effort reduces immune function and future reproduction

    OpenAIRE

    Hanssen, S A; Hasselquist, Dennis; Folstad, I; Erikstad, K E

    2005-01-01

    Life-history theory predicts that increased current reproductive effort should lead to a fitness cost. This cost of reproduction may be observed as reduced survival or future reproduction, and may be caused by temporal suppression of immune function in stressed or hard-working individuals. In birds, consideration of the costs of incubating eggs has largely been neglected in favour of the costs of brood rearing. We manipulated incubation demand in two breeding seasons (2000 and 2001) in female...

  7. Female reproductive disorders

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Crain, D Andrew; Janssen, Sarah J; Edwards, Thea M

    2008-01-01

    To evaluate the possible role of endocrine-disrupting compounds (EDCs) on female reproductive disorders emphasizing developmental plasticity and the complexity of endocrine-dependent ontogeny of reproductive organs. Declining conception rates and the high incidence of female reproductive...... disruptions warrant evaluation of the impact of EDCs on female reproductive health....

  8. Zika virus and assisted reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cordeiro, Christina N; Bano, Rashda; Washington Cross, Chantel I; Segars, James H

    2017-06-01

    Due to the fact that the Zika virus can be sexually transmitted, there is a potential risk for disease transmission at several stages of assisted reproduction. Such a possibility poses a serious challenge to couples pursing fertility with reproductive technologies. Here, we discuss what is known regarding Zika virus infection with respect to sexual transmission and correlate this knowledge with recent recommendations in the realm of infertility treatment. Zika virus can be transmitted from infected men and women through vaginal, oral or anal intercourse. Zika virus RNA has been detected in blood, semen, cervical mucus and vaginal fluid. Currently, the Centers for Disease Control recommends that infected men wait 6 months, and infected women 8 weeks, prior to attempting pregnancy. Reproductive tissue donors should wait 6 months before giving a specimen. Further study of Zika virus transmission in different reproductive tissues and establishment of validated testing methods for viral disease transmissibility are urgently needed. Reproductive technologists need to establish screening, testing and laboratory protocols aimed to reduce the risk of Zika virus transmission during assisted reproduction.

  9. Response to multi-generational selection under elevated [CO2] in two temperature regimes suggests enhanced carbon assimilation and increased reproductive output in Brassica napus L

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Frenck, Georg; van der Linden, Leon; Mikkelsen, Teis Nørgaard

    2013-01-01

    Functional plant traits are likely to adapt under the sustained pressure imposed by environmental changes through natural selection. Employing Brassica napus as a model, a multi-generational study was performed to investigate the potential trajectories of selection at elevated [CO2] in two differ...... ameliorate depressions in plant reproductive fitness caused by higher temperatures in situations where both factors co-occur....

  10. Female reproductive disorders

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Crain, D Andrew; Janssen, Sarah J; Edwards, Thea M

    2008-01-01

    To evaluate the possible role of endocrine-disrupting compounds (EDCs) on female reproductive disorders emphasizing developmental plasticity and the complexity of endocrine-dependent ontogeny of reproductive organs. Declining conception rates and the high incidence of female reproductive disrupti......To evaluate the possible role of endocrine-disrupting compounds (EDCs) on female reproductive disorders emphasizing developmental plasticity and the complexity of endocrine-dependent ontogeny of reproductive organs. Declining conception rates and the high incidence of female reproductive...... disruptions warrant evaluation of the impact of EDCs on female reproductive health....

  11. Occupational reproductive health risks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Filkins, K; Kerr, M J

    1993-01-01

    The potentially harmful effects on women of certain workplace exposures are widely appreciated, and steps to control these have included legislative efforts such as right-to-know laws of well as corporate policies mandating selective restriction of fertile women, which are illegal under federal civil rights laws. This chapter reviews the various occupational health risks reproductive women face in the workplace but also considers the effects of other genetic, medical, social, infectious, and environmental factors which may be of even greater concern than most occupational factors.

  12. Love Influences Reproductive Success in Humans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sorokowski, Piotr; Sorokowska, Agnieszka; Butovskaya, Marina; Karwowski, Maciej; Groyecka, Agata; Wojciszke, Bogdan; Pawłowski, Bogusław

    2017-01-01

    As love seems to be universal, researchers have attempted to find its biological basis. However, no studies till date have shown its direct association with reproductive success, which is broadly known to be a good measure of fitness. Here, we show links between love, as defined by the Sternberg Triangular Theory of Love, and reproductive success among the Hadza—traditional hunter-gatherer population. We found that commitment and reproductive success were positively and consistently related in both sexes, with number of children showing negative and positive associations with intimacy and passion, respectively, only among women. Our study may shed new light on the meaning of love in humans' evolutionary past, especially in traditional hunter-gatherer societies in which individuals, not their parents, were responsible for partner choice. We suggest that passion and commitment may be the key factors that increase fitness, and therefore, that selection promoted love in human evolution. However, further studies in this area are recommended. PMID:29209243

  13. Reproductive Disorders in Snakes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Girolamo, Nicola; Selleri, Paolo

    2017-05-01

    Reproduction of snakes is one of the challenging aspects of herpetology medicine. Due to the complexity of reproduction, several disorders may present before, during, or after this process. This article describes the physical examination, and radiographic, ultrasonographic, and endoscopic findings associated with reproductive disorders in snakes. Surgical techniques used to resolve reproductive disorders in snakes are described. Finally, common reproductive disorders in snakes are individually discussed. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Potential costs of bacterial infection on storage protein gene expression and reproduction in queenless Apis mellifera worker bees on distinct dietary regimes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lourenço, Anete Pedro; Martins, Juliana Ramos; Guidugli-Lazzarini, Karina Rosa; Macedo, Liliane Maria Fróes; Bitondi, Márcia Maria Gentile; Simões, Zilá Luz Paulino

    2012-09-01

    Insects are able to combat infection by initiating an efficient immune response that involves synthesizing antimicrobial peptides and a range of other defense molecules. These responses may be costly to the organism, resulting in it exploiting endogenous resources to maintain homeostasis or support defense to the detriment of other physiological needs. We used queenless worker bees on distinct dietary regimes that may alter hemolymph protein storage and ovary activation to investigate the physiological costs of infection with Serratia marcescens. The expression of the genes encoding the storage proteins vitellogenin and hexamerin 70a, the vitellogenin receptor, and vasa (which has a putative role in reproduction), was impaired in the infected bees. This impairment was mainly evident in the bees fed beebread, which caused significantly higher expression of these genes than did royal jelly or syrup, and this was confirmed at the vitellogenin and hexamerin 70a protein levels. Beebread was also the only diet that promoted ovary activation in the queenless bees, but this activation was significantly impaired by the infection. The expression of the genes encoding the storage proteins apolipophorins-I and -III and the lipophorin receptor was not altered by infection regardless the diet provided to the bees. Similarly, the storage of apolipophorin-I in the hemolymph was only slightly impaired by the infection, independently of the supplied diet. Taken together these results indicate that, infection demands a physiological cost from the transcription of specific protein storage-related genes and from the reproductive capacity. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. FITS: a function-fitting program

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Balestrini, S.J.; Chezem, C.G.

    1982-01-01

    FITS is an iterating computer program that adjusts the parameters of a function to fit a set of data points according to the least squares criterion and then lists and plots the results. The function can be programmed or chosen from a library that is provided. The library can be expanded to include up to 99 functions. A general plotting routine, contained in the program but useful in its own right, is described separately in an Appendix.

  16. Family Activities for Fitness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grosse, Susan J.

    2009-01-01

    This article discusses how families can increase family togetherness and improve physical fitness. The author provides easy ways to implement family friendly activities for improving and maintaining physical health. These activities include: walking, backyard games, and fitness challenges.

  17. Symbiotic regulation of plant growth, development and reproduction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez, R.J.; Freeman, D. Carl; McArthur, E.D.; Kim, Y.-O.; Redman, R.S.

    2009-01-01

    The growth and development of rice (Oryzae sativa) seedlings was shown to be regulated epigenetically by a fungal endophyte. In contrast to un-inoculated (nonsymbiotic) plants, endophyte colonized (symbiotic) plants preferentially allocated resources into root growth until root hairs were well established. During that time symbiotic roots expanded at five times the rate observed in nonsymbiotic plants. Endophytes also influenced sexual reproduction of mature big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata) plants. Two spatially distinct big sagebrush subspecies and their hybrids were symbiotic with unique fungal endophytes, despite being separated by only 380 m distance and 60 m elevation. A double reciprocal transplant experiment of parental and hybrid plants, and soils across the hybrid zone showed that fungal endophytes interact with the soils and different plant genotypes to confer enhanced plant reproduction in soil native to the endophyte and reduced reproduction in soil alien to the endophyte. Moreover, the most prevalent endophyte of the hybrid zone reduced the fitness of both parental subspecies. Because these endophytes are passed to the next generation of plants on seed coats, this interaction provides a selective advantage, habitat specificity, and the means of restricting gene flow, thereby making the hybrid zone stable, narrow and potentially leading to speciation. ?? 2009 Landes Bioscience.

  18. Computer code FIT

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rohmann, D.; Koehler, T.

    1987-02-01

    This is a description of the computer code FIT, written in FORTRAN-77 for a PDP 11/34. FIT is an interactive program to decude position, width and intensity of lines of X-ray spectra (max. length of 4K channels). The lines (max. 30 lines per fit) may have Gauss- or Voigt-profile, as well as exponential tails. Spectrum and fit can be displayed on a Tektronix terminal. (orig.) [de

  19. Reproduction Symposium: developmental programming of reproductive and metabolic health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Padmanabhan, V; Veiga-Lopez, A

    2014-08-01

    concept for the developmental origin of fertility and metabolic disorders. Studies with the environmental endocrine disruptor bisphenol A (BPA) show that reproductive disruptions found in prenatal BPA-treated sheep are similar to those seen in prenatal T-treated sheep. The ubiquitous exposure to endocrine disrupting compounds with steroidogenic potential via the environment and food sources calls for studies addressing the impact of developmental exposure to environmental steroid mimics on reproductive function.

  20. Age-dependent terminal declines in reproductive output in a wild bird

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hammers, Martijn; Richardson, David S.; Burke, Terry; Komdeur, Jan

    2012-01-01

    In many iteroparous species individual fitness components, such as reproductive output, first increase with age and then decline during late-life. However, individuals differ greatly in reproductive lifespan, but reproductive declines may only occur in the period just before their death as a result

  1. Life-history strategies of North American elk: trade-offs associated with reproduction and survival

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sabrina Morano; Kelley M. Stewart; James S. Sedinger; Christopher A. Nicolai; Marty Vavra

    2013-01-01

    The principle of energy allocation states that individuals should attempt to maximize fitness by allocating resources optimally among growth, maintenance, and reproduction. Such allocation may result in trade-offs between survival and reproduction, or between current and future reproduction. We used a marked population of North American elk (Cervus elaphus...

  2. Crown-of-thorns sea star, Acanthaster cf. solaris, have tissue-characteristic microbiomes with potential roles in health and reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Høj, Lone; Levy, Natalie; Baillie, Brett K; Clode, Peta L; Strohmaier, Raphael C; Siboni, Nachshon; Webster, Nicole S; Uthicke, Sven; Bourne, David G

    2018-05-04

    Outbreaks of coral-eating crown-of-thorns sea stars (CoTS; Acanthaster spp. complex) cause substantial coral loss, hence there is considerable interest in developing prevention and control strategies. We characterised the microbiome of captive CoTS and assessed whether dysbiosis was evident in sea stars during a disease event. Most tissue types had a distinct microbiome. The exception was female gonads, which were highly variable amongst individuals. Male gonads were dominated (>97% of reads) by a single Mollicutes -related OTU. Detailed phylogenetic and microscopy analysis demonstrated the presence of a novel Spiroplasma -related bacterium in the spermatogenic layer. Body wall samples had high relative abundance (43-64% of reads) of spirochetes, likely corresponding to subcuticular symbionts reported from many echinoderms. Tube feet were characterised by Hyphomonadaceae (24-55% of reads). Pyloric caeca microbiomes had high alpha diversity, comprising many taxa commonly found in gastro-intestinal systems. The order Oceanospirillales (genera Endozoicomonas and Kistimonas ) was detected in all tissues. A microbiome shift occurred in diseased individuals, although differences between tissue types were retained. The relative abundance of spirochetes was significantly reduced in diseased individuals. Kistimonas was present in all diseased individuals and significantly associated with diseased tube feet, but its role in disease causation is unknown. While Arcobacter was significantly associated with diseased tissues and Vibrionaceae increased in diversity, no single OTUs were detected in all diseased individuals suggesting opportunistic proliferation of these taxa in this case. This study shows that CoTS have tissue-characteristic bacterial communities and identifies taxa that could play a role in reproduction and host health. IMPORTANCE Coral-eating crown of thorns sea stars (CoTS; Acanthaster spp. complex) are native to the Indo-Pacific, but during periodic population

  3. A novel loss-of-function mutation in Npr2 clarifies primary role in female reproduction and reveals a potential therapy for acromesomelic dysplasia, Maroteaux type.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geister, Krista A; Brinkmeier, Michelle L; Hsieh, Minnie; Faust, Susan M; Karolyi, I Jill; Perosky, Joseph E; Kozloff, Kenneth M; Conti, Marco; Camper, Sally A

    2013-01-15

    We discovered a new spontaneous mutant allele of Npr2 named peewee (pwe) that exhibits severe disproportionate dwarfism and female infertility. The pwe phenotype is caused by a four base-pair deletion in exon 3 that generates a premature stop codon at codon 313 (L313X). The Npr2(pwe/pwe) mouse is a model for the human skeletal dysplasia acromesomelic dysplasia, Maroteaux type (AMDM). We conducted a thorough analysis of the female reproductive tract and report that the primary cause of Npr2(pwe/pwe) female infertility is premature oocyte meiotic resumption, while the pituitary and uterus appear to be normal. Npr2 is expressed in chondrocytes and osteoblasts. We determined that the loss of Npr2 causes a reduction in the hypertrophic and proliferative zones of the growth plate, but mineralization of skeletal elements is normal. Mutant tibiae have increased levels of the activated form of ERK1/2, consistent with the idea that natriuretic peptide receptor type 2 (NPR2) signaling inhibits the activation of the MEK/ERK mitogen activated protein kinase pathway. Treatment of fetal tibiae explants with mitogen activated protein kinase 1 and 2 inhibitors U0126 and PD325901 rescues the Npr2(pwe/pwe) growth defect, providing a promising foundation for skeletal dysplasia therapeutics.

  4. A low-cost mesocosm for the study of behaviour and reproductive potential in Afrotropical mosquito (Diptera: Culicidae) vectors of malaria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, B T; Stone, C M; Ebrahimi, B; Briët, O J T; Foster, W A

    2015-03-01

    A large-scale mesocosm was constructed and tested for its effectiveness for use in experiments on behaviour, reproduction and adult survivorship in the Afrotropical malaria vector Anopheles gambiae s.s. Giles (Diptera: Culicidae) in temperate climates. The large space (82.69 m(3) ) allowed for semi-natural experiments that increased demand on a mosquito's energetic reserves in an environment of widely distributed resources. A one-piece prefabricated enclosure, made with white netting and vinyl, prevented the ingress of predators and the egress of mosquitoes. Daylight and white materials prompted the mosquitoes to seclude themselves in restricted daytime resting sites and allowed the easy collection of dead bodies so that daily mortality could be assessed accurately using a method that accounts for the loss of a proportion of bodies. Here, daily, age-dependent mortality rates of males and females were estimated using Bayesian Markov chain Monte Carlo simulation. In overnight experiments, mosquitoes successfully located plants and took sugar meals. A 3-week survival trial with a single cohort demonstrated successful mating, blood feeding, oviposition and long life. The relatively low cost of the mesocosm and the performance of the mosquitoes in it make it a viable option for any behavioural or ecological study of tropical mosquitoes in which space and seasonal cold are constraining factors. © 2014 The Royal Entomological Society.

  5. A low-cost mesocosm for the study of behaviour and reproductive potential of Afrotropical mosquito (Diptera: Culicidae) vectors of malaria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, Bryan T.; Stone, Christopher M.; Ebrahimi, Babak; Briët, Olivier J.T.; Foster, Woodbridge A.

    2014-01-01

    A large-scale mesocosm was constructed and tested for its effectiveness for experiments on behaviour, reproduction, and adult survivorship of the Afrotropical malaria vector Anopheles gambiae s.s. Giles (Diptera: Culicidae) in temperate climates. The large space (82.69 m3) allowed for semi-natural experiments that increased demand on a mosquito’s energetic reserves in an environment of widely distributed resources. A one-piece prefabricated enclosure, made with white netting and vinyl, prevented the ingress of predators and the egress of mosquitoes. Daylight and white materials prompted the mosquitoes to seclude themselves in restricted daytime resting sites and allowed easy collection of dead bodies so that daily mortality could be assessed accurately, using a method that accounts for a proportion of bodies being lost. Here, daily, age-dependent mortality rates of males and females were estimated using Bayesian Markov Chain Monte Carlo simulation. In overnight experiments, mosquitoes successfully located plants and took sugar meals. A 3-week survival trial with a single-cohort demonstrated successful mating, blood feeding, oviposition, and long life. The relatively low cost of the mesocosm and the performance of the mosquitoes in it make it a viable option for any behavioural or ecological study of tropical mosquitoes where space and seasonal cold are constraining factors. PMID:25294339

  6. Pervasive gene expression responses to a fluctuating diet in Drosophila melanogaster: The importance of measuring multiple traits to decouple potential mediators of life span and reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zandveld, Jelle; van den Heuvel, Joost; Mulder, Maarten; Brakefield, Paul M; Kirkwood, Thomas B L; Shanley, Daryl P; Zwaan, Bas J

    2017-11-01

    Phenotypic plasticity is an important concept in life-history evolution, and most organisms, including Drosophila melanogaster, show a plastic life-history response to diet. However, little is known about how these life-history responses are mediated. In this study, we compared adult female flies fed an alternating diet (yoyo flies) with flies fed a constant low (CL) or high (CH) diet and tested how whole genome expression was affected by these diet regimes and how the transcriptional responses related to different life-history traits. We showed that flies were able to respond quickly to diet fluctuations throughout life span by drastically changing their transcription. Importantly, by measuring the response of multiple life-history traits we were able to decouple groups of genes associated with life span or reproduction, life-history traits that often covary with a diet change. A coexpression network analysis uncovered which genes underpin the separate and shared regulation of these life-history traits. Our study provides essential insights to help unravel the genetic architecture mediating life-history responses to diet, and it shows that the flies' whole genome transcription response is highly plastic. © 2017 The Author(s). Evolution © 2017 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  7. Alternative reproductive tactics and the propensity of hybridization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tynkkynen, K; Raatikainen, K J; Häkkilä, M; Haukilehto, E; Kotiaho, J S

    2009-12-01

    One explanation for hybridization between species is the fitness benefits it occasionally confers to the hybridizing individuals. This explanation is possible in species that have evolved alternative male reproductive tactics: individuals with inferior tactics might be more prone to hybridization provided it increases their reproductive success and fitness. Here we experimentally tested whether the propensity of hybridization in the wild depends on male reproductive tactic in Calopteryx splendens damselflies. Counter to our expectation, it was males adopting the superior reproductive tactic (territoriality) that had greatest propensity to hybridize than males adopting the inferior tactics (sneakers and floaters). Moreover, among the territorial males, the most ornamented males had greatest propensity to hybridize whereas the pattern was reversed in the sneaker males. Our results suggest that there is fluctuating selection on male mate discrimination against heterospecific females depending on both ornament size and the male's reproductive tactic.

  8. Physical Work Demands and Fitness

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Mette Korshøj

    . The effects were evaluated with objective physiological or diurnal data in an intention-to-treat analysis using multi-adjusted mixed models. The results indicated that the intervention led to several improvements in risk factors for cardiovascular disease, e.g. enhanced cardiorespiratory fitness, reduced...... exposed to high relative aerobic workloads obtained more pronounced increases of resting and 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure, an unaltered cardiorespiratory fitness and a reduced sleeping heart rate. The enhanced resting and 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure may be explained as a potential...

  9. Persistent organic pollutants and male reproductive health

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vested, Anne; Giwercman, Aleksander; Bonde, Jens Peter

    2014-01-01

    development. An extensive number of epidemiological studies have addressed the possible effects of exposure to POPs on male reproductive health, but the results are conflicting. Thus far, most studies have focused on investigating exposure and the different reproductive health outcomes during adulthood. Some...... suggested adverse effects of exposure to these compounds on human reproductive health, which, according to the endocrine disrupter hypothesis, are ascribed to the compounds' potential to interfere with endocrine signaling, especially when exposure occurs during certain phases of fetal and childhood...... studies have addressed the potential harmful effects of fetal exposure with respect to malformations at birth and/or reproductive development, whereas only a few studies have been able to evaluate whether intrauterine exposure to POPs has long-term consequences for male reproductive health with measurable...

  10. Evaluación del potencial reproductivo del chorito (Mytilus chilensis de dos poblaciones naturales sometidas a diferentes temperaturas de acondicionamiento Assessment of the reproductive potential of the mussel (Mytilus chilensis from two natural populations subjected to different conditioning temperatures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luis Lagos

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Mytilus chilensis tiene ciclos reproductivos que varían latitudinalmente. Presenta reducida diferenciación genética y morfológica debido a un gran potencial de dispersión. Se acondicionaron reproductores de bahía Yaldad (Chiloé y bahía Zenteno (Punta Arenas a 9 ± 0,5°C y 15 ± 0,5°C, alimentados con dieta (1:1 de Isochrysis galbana y Chaetoceros neogracile. Se espera dilucidar si el acondicionamiento a diferentes temperaturas produce variaciones en el potencial reproductivo de las poblaciones. El menor desarrollo gonadal se produjo en los reproductores acondicionados a 9°C, mientras que el mayor se produjo en los reproductores acondicionados a 15°C provenientes de Chiloé. La fecundidad de los reproductores de Yaldad fue mayor que los de Zenteno. El diámetro de los ovocitos fue mayor en los reproductores de Zenteno y en ambas poblaciones fue mayor a 9°C. Ni el porcentaje de huevos fecundados ni el porcentaje de eclosión de larvas D mostraron diferencias significativas entre las poblaciones a ninguna de las temperaturas de acondicionamiento. De acuerdo con estos resultados, no se logra establecer diferencias en el potencial reproductivo en las poblaciones y bajo las condiciones de este estudio.The reproductive cycles of Mytilus chilensis vary latitudinally. This species has reduced genetic and morphological differentiation due to its high potential for dispersal. Broodstocks from Yaldad Bay (Chiloé and Zenteno Bay (Punta Arenas were conditioned at 9 ± 0.5°C and 15 ± 0.5°C, and were fed a diet (1:1 of Isochrysis galbana and Chaetoceros neogracile. We expected to determine whether conditioning at different temperatures produces changes in the reproductive potential of the populations. Gonadal development was lowest in the broodstocks conditioned at 9°C, and highest in those conditioned at 15°C, from Chiloé. Fertility was greater in broodstocks from Yaldad than in those from Zenteno. Oocyte diameter was greater in broodstocks

  11. Systematic review of the influence of foraging habitat on red-cockaded woodpecker reproductive success.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Garabedian, James E. [North Carolina State University

    2014-04-01

    Relationships between foraging habitat and reproductive success provide compelling evidence of the contribution of specific vegetative features to foraging habitat quality, a potentially limiting factor for many animal populations. For example, foraging habitat quality likely will gain importance in the recovery of the threatened red-cockaded woodpecker Picoides borealis (RCW) in the USA as immediate nesting constraints are mitigated. Several researchers have characterized resource selection by foraging RCWs, but emerging research linking reproductive success (e.g. clutch size, nestling and fledgling production, and group size) and foraging habitat features has yet to be synthesized. Therefore, we reviewed peer-refereed scientific literature and technical resources (e.g. books, symposia proceedings, and technical reports) that examined RCW foraging ecology, foraging habitat, or demography to evaluate evidence for effects of the key foraging habitat features described in the species’ recovery plan on group reproductive success. Fitness-based habitat models suggest foraging habitat with low to intermediate pine Pinus spp. densities, presence of large and old pines, minimal midstory development, and herbaceous groundcover support more productive RCW groups. However, the relationships between some foraging habitat features and RCW reproductive success are not well supported by empirical data. In addition, few regression models account for > 30% of variation in reproductive success, and unstandardized multiple and simple linear regression coefficient estimates typically range from -0.100 to 0.100, suggesting ancillary variables and perhaps indirect mechanisms influence reproductive success. These findings suggest additional research is needed to address uncertainty in relationships between foraging habitat features and RCW reproductive success and in the mechanisms underlying those relationships.

  12. FITS: a function-fitting program

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Balestrini, S.J.; Chezem, C.G.

    1982-08-01

    FITS is an iterating computer program that adjusts the parameters of a function to fit a set of data points according to the least squares criterion and then lists and plots the results. The function can be programmed or chosen from a library that is provided. The library can be expanded to include up to 99 functions. A general plotting routine, contained in the program but useful in its own right, is described separately in Appendix A. An example problem file and its solution is given in Appendix B.

  13. Ran Involved in the Development and Reproduction Is a Potential Target for RNA-Interference-Based Pest Management in Nilaparvata lugens.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kai-Long Li

    Full Text Available Ran (RanGTPase in insects participates in the 20-hydroxyecdysone signal transduction pathway in which downstream genes, FTZ-F1, Krüppel-homolog 1 (Kr-h1 and vitellogenin, are involved. A putative Ran gene (NlRan was cloned from Nilaparvata lugens, a destructive phloem-feeding pest of rice. NlRan has the typical Ran primary structure features that are conserved in insects. NlRan showed higher mRNA abundance immediately after molting and peaked in newly emerged female adults. Among the examined tissues ovary had the highest transcript level, followed by fat body, midgut and integument, and legs. Three days after dsNlRan injection the NlRan mRNA abundance in the third-, fourth-, and fifth-instar nymphs was decreased by 94.3%, 98.4% and 97.0%, respectively. NlFTZ-F1 expression levels in treated third- and fourth-instar nymphs were reduced by 89.3% and 23.8%, respectively. In contrast, NlKr-h1 mRNA levels were up-regulated by 67.5 and 1.5 folds, respectively. NlRan knockdown significantly decreased the body weights, delayed development, and killed >85% of the nymphs at day seven. Two apparent phenotypic defects were observed: (1 Extended body form, and failed to molt; (2 The cuticle at the notum was split open but cannot completely shed off. The newly emerged female adults from dsNlRan injected fifth-instar nymphs showed lower levels of NlRan and vitellogenin, lower weight gain and honeydew excretion comparing with the blank control, and no offspring. Those results suggest that NlRan encodes a functional protein that was involved in development and reproduction. The study established proof of concept that NlRan could serve as a target for dsRNA-based pesticides for N. lugens control.

  14. Modeling the Male Reproductive Endocrine Axis: Potential Role for a Delay Mechanism in the Inhibitory Action of Gonadal Steroids on GnRH Pulse Frequency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferasyi, Teuku R; Barrett, P Hugh R; Blache, Dominique; Martin, Graeme B

    2016-05-01

    We developed a compartmental model so we could test mechanistic concepts in the control of the male reproductive endocrine axis. Using SAAM II computer software and a bank of experimental data from male sheep, we began by modeling GnRH-LH feed-forward and LH-T feedback. A key assumption was that the primary control signal comes from a hypothetical neural network (the PULSAR) that emits a digital (pulsatile) signal of variable frequency that drives GnRH secretion in square wave-like pulses. This model produced endocrine profiles that matched experimental observations for the testis-intact animal and for changes in GnRH pulse frequency after castration and T replacement. In the second stage of the model development, we introduced a delay in the negative feedback caused by the aromatization of T to estradiol at the brain level, a concept supported by empirical observations. The simulations showed how changes in the process of aromatization could affect the response of the pulsatile signal to inhibition by steroid feedback. The sensitivity of the PULSAR to estradiol was a critical factor, but the most striking observation was the effect of time delays. With longer delays, there was a reduction in the rate of aromatization and therefore a decrease in local estradiol concentrations, and the outcome was multiple-pulse events in the secretion of GnRH/LH, reflecting experimental observations. In conclusion, our model successfully emulates the GnRH-LH-T-GnRH loop, accommodates a pivotal role for central aromatization in negative feedback, and suggests that time delays in negative feedback are an important aspect of the control of GnRH pulse frequency.

  15. Female Reproductive System

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... of the Female Reproductive System Print en español Sistema reproductor femenino About Human Reproduction All living things ... of Use Notice of Nondiscrimination Visit the Nemours Web site. Note: All information on KidsHealth® is for ...

  16. Children's Concepts of Reproduction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, James E.; Kendall, Diane G.

    1971-01-01

    Results of this study provide little support for either Freudian or Piagetian theorizing about what the young child thinks of reproduction. Implications for sex education and reproduction information are presented. (Author/CJ)

  17. Squalus cubensis Reproduction Data

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Reproductive data from Squalus cubensis (Cuban dogfish) were opportunistically collected from 2005-2012. Data include those necessary to examine reproductive cycle,...

  18. Mating System Evolution under Strong Pollen Limitation: Evidence of Disruptive Selection through Male and Female Fitness in Clarkia xantiana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Briscoe Runquist, Ryan D; Geber, Monica A; Pickett-Leonard, Michael; Moeller, David A

    2017-05-01

    Selection on floral traits in hermaphroditic plants is determined by both male and female reproductive success. However, predictions regarding floral trait and mating system evolution are often based solely on female fitness. Selection via male fitness has the potential to affect the outcomes of floral evolution. In this study, we used paternity analysis to assess individual selfing rates and selection on floral traits via male and female fitness in an experimental population of Clarkia xantiana where pollen limitation of seed set was strong. We detected selection through both female and male fitness with reinforcing or noninterfering patterns of selection through the two sex functions. For female fitness, selection favored reduced herkogamy and protandry, traits that promote increased autonomous selfing. For male fitness, selection on petal area was disruptive, with higher trait values conferring greater pollinator attraction and outcross siring success and smaller trait values leading to higher selfed siring success. Combining both female and male fitness, selection on petal area and protandry was disruptive because intermediate phenotypes were less successful as both males and females. Finally, functional relationships among male and female fertility components indicated that selfing resulted in seed discounting and pollen discounting. Under these functional relationships, the evolutionarily stable selfing rate can be intermediate or predominantly selfing or outcrossing, depending on the segregating load of deleterious mutations.

  19. The effect of cold priming on the fitness of Arabidopsis thaliana accessions under natural and controlled conditions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cvetkovic, Jelena; Müller, Klaus; Baier, Margarete

    2017-01-01

    Priming improves an organism's performance upon a future stress. To test whether cold priming supports protection in spring and how it is affected by cold acclimation, we compared seven Arabidopsis accessions with different cold acclimation potentials in the field and in the greenhouse for growth......, photosynthetic performance and reproductive fitness in March and May after a 14 day long cold-pretreatment at 4 °C. In the plants transferred to the field in May, the effect of the cold pretreatment on the seed yield correlated with the cold acclimation potential of the accessions. In the March transferred...

  20. The three faces of ecological fitness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peacock, Kent A

    2011-03-01

    This paper argues that fitness is most usefully understood as those properties of organisms that are explanatory of survival in the broadest sense, not merely descriptive of reproductive success. Borrowing from Rosenberg and Bouchard (2009), fitness in this sense is ecological in that it is defined by the interactions between organisms and environments. There are three sorts of ecological fitness: the well-documented ability to compete, the ability to cooperate (as in mutualistic symbiosis), and a third sense of fitness that has received insufficient attention in evolutionary theory, the ability to construct. Following Lotka, it can be understood thermodynamically as the ability to maintain or enlarge the energy-circulating capacity of an ecosystem. An organism that does this could end with its gene frequency unchanged but its probability of survival enhanced since it would sustain or increase the total carrying capacity of its ecosystem. Photosynthesizers and other autotrophs are obvious candidates for organisms that are fit in the constructive sense, but any organisms, including heterotrophs, can exhibit constructive fitness if they have some mechanism for channeling external flows of free energy into their ecosystems. I will briefly examine the prospects for the human species in the light of these considerations. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Male Reproductive System

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... With the Male Reproductive System Print en español Sistema reproductor masculino Reproduction All living things reproduce. Reproduction — ... of Use Notice of Nondiscrimination Visit the Nemours Web site. Note: All information on KidsHealth® is for ...

  2. A Novel Quantitative Approach to Women’s Reproductive Strategies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milne, Fritha H.; Judge, Debra S.

    2012-01-01

    The patterned way in which individuals allocate finite resources to various components of reproduction (e.g. mating effort, reproductive timing and parental investment) is described as a reproductive strategy. As energy is limited, trade-offs between and within aspects of reproductive strategies are expected. The first aim of this study was to derive aspects of reproductive strategies using complete reproductive histories from 718 parous Western Australian women. Factor analysis using a subset of these participants resulted in six factors that represented ‘short-term mating strategy’, ‘early onset of sexual activity’, ‘reproductive output’, ‘timing of childbearing’, ‘breastfeeding’, and ‘child spacing’. This factor structure was internally validated by replication using a second independent subset of the data. The second aim of this study examined trade-offs between aspects of reproductive strategies derived from aim one. Factor scores calculated for each woman were incorporated in generalised linear models and interaction terms were employed to examine the effect of mating behaviour on the relationships between reproductive timing, parental investment and overall reproductive success. Early sexual activity correlates with early reproductive onset for women displaying more long-term mating strategies. Women with more short-term mating strategies exhibit a trade-off between child quantity and child quality not observed in women with a long-term mating strategy. However, women with a short-term mating strategy who delay reproductive timing exhibit levels of parental investment (measured as breastfeeding duration per child) similar to that of women with long-term mating strategies. Reproductive delay has fitness costs (fewer births) for women displaying more short-term mating strategies. We provide empirical evidence that reproductive histories of contemporary women reflect aspects of reproductive strategies, and associations between these

  3. A novel quantitative approach to women's reproductive strategies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fritha H Milne

    Full Text Available The patterned way in which individuals allocate finite resources to various components of reproduction (e.g. mating effort, reproductive timing and parental investment is described as a reproductive strategy. As energy is limited, trade-offs between and within aspects of reproductive strategies are expected. The first aim of this study was to derive aspects of reproductive strategies using complete reproductive histories from 718 parous Western Australian women. Factor analysis using a subset of these participants resulted in six factors that represented 'short-term mating strategy', 'early onset of sexual activity', 'reproductive output', 'timing of childbearing', 'breastfeeding', and 'child spacing'. This factor structure was internally validated by replication using a second independent subset of the data. The second aim of this study examined trade-offs between aspects of reproductive strategies derived from aim one. Factor scores calculated for each woman were incorporated in generalised linear models and interaction terms were employed to examine the effect of mating behaviour on the relationships between reproductive timing, parental investment and overall reproductive success. Early sexual activity correlates with early reproductive onset for women displaying more long-term mating strategies. Women with more short-term mating strategies exhibit a trade-off between child quantity and child quality not observed in women with a long-term mating strategy. However, women with a short-term mating strategy who delay reproductive timing exhibit levels of parental investment (measured as breastfeeding duration per child similar to that of women with long-term mating strategies. Reproductive delay has fitness costs (fewer births for women displaying more short-term mating strategies. We provide empirical evidence that reproductive histories of contemporary women reflect aspects of reproductive strategies, and associations between these strategic

  4. Oxidative shielding and the cost of reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blount, Jonathan D; Vitikainen, Emma I K; Stott, Iain; Cant, Michael A

    2016-05-01

    Life-history theory assumes that reproduction and lifespan are constrained by trade-offs which prevent their simultaneous increase. Recently, there has been considerable interest in the possibility that this cost of reproduction is mediated by oxidative stress. However, empirical tests of this theory have yielded equivocal support. We carried out a meta-analysis to examine associations between reproduction and oxidative damage across markers and tissues. We show that oxidative damage is positively associated with reproductive effort across females of various species. Yet paradoxically, categorical comparisons of breeders versus non-breeders reveal that transition to the reproductive state is associated with a step-change reduction in oxidative damage in certain tissues and markers. Developing offspring may be particularly sensitive to harm caused by oxidative damage in mothers. Therefore, such reductions could potentially function to shield reproducing mothers, gametes and developing offspring from oxidative insults that inevitably increase as a consequence of reproductive effort. According to this perspective, we hypothesise that the cost of reproduction is mediated by dual impacts of maternally-derived oxidative damage on mothers and offspring, and that mothers may be selected to diminish such damage. Such oxidative shielding may explain why many existing studies have concluded that reproduction has little or no oxidative cost. Future advance in life-history theory therefore needs to take account of potential transgenerational impacts of the mechanisms underlying life-history trade-offs. © 2015 Cambridge Philosophical Society.

  5. Fragment Impact Toolkit (FIT)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shevitz, Daniel Wolf [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Key, Brian P. [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Garcia, Daniel B. [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)

    2017-09-05

    The Fragment Impact Toolkit (FIT) is a software package used for probabilistic consequence evaluation of fragmenting sources. The typical use case for FIT is to simulate an exploding shell and evaluate the consequence on nearby objects. FIT is written in the programming language Python and is designed as a collection of interacting software modules. Each module has a function that interacts with the other modules to produce desired results.

  6. Energetic fitness: Field metabolic rates assessed via 3D accelerometry complement conventional fitness metrics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grémillet, David; Lescroël, Amelie; Ballard, Grant; Dugger, Katie M.; Massaro, Melanie; Porzig, Elizabeth L.; Ainley, David G.

    2018-01-01

    Evaluating the fitness of organisms is an essential step towards understanding their responses to environmental change. Connections between energy expenditure and fitness have been postulated for nearly a century. However, testing this premise among wild animals is constrained by difficulties in measuring energy expenditure while simultaneously monitoring conventional fitness metrics such as survival and reproductive output.We addressed this issue by exploring the functional links between field metabolic rate (FMR), body condition, sex, age and reproductive performance in a wild population.We deployed 3D accelerometers on 115 Adélie penguins Pygoscelis adeliae during four breeding seasons at one of the largest colonies of this species, Cape Crozier, on Ross Island, Antarctica. The demography of this population has been studied for the past 18 years. From accelerometry recordings, collected for birds of known age and breeding history, we determined the vector of the dynamic body acceleration (VeDBA) and used it as a proxy for FMR.This allowed us to demonstrate relationships among FMR, a breeding quality index (BQI) and body condition. Notably, we found a significant quadratic relationship between mean VeDBA during foraging and BQI for experienced breeders, and individuals in better body condition showed lower rates of energy expenditure.We conclude that using FMR as a fitness component complementary to more conventional fitness metrics will yield greater understanding of evolutionary and conservation physiology.

  7. An empirical test of evolutionary theories for reproductive senescence and reproductive effort in the garter snake Thamnophis elegans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sparkman, Amanda M; Arnold, Stevan J; Bronikowski, Anne M

    2007-04-07

    Evolutionary theory predicts that differential reproductive effort and rate of reproductive senescence will evolve under different rates of external mortality. We examine the evolutionary divergence of age-specific reproduction in two life-history ecotypes of the western terrestrial garter snake, Thamnophis elegans. We test for the signature of reproductive senescence (decreasing fecundity with age) and increasing reproductive effort with age (increasing reproductive productivity per gram female) in replicate populations of two life-history ecotypes: snakes that grow fast, mature young and have shorter lifespans, and snakes that grow slow, mature late and have long lives. The difference between life-history ecotypes is due to genetic divergence in growth rate. We find (i) reproductive success (live litter mass) increases with age in both ecotypes, but does so more rapidly in the fast-growth ecotype, (ii) reproductive failure increases with age in both ecotypes, but the proportion of reproductive failure to total reproductive output remains invariant, and (iii) reproductive effort remains constant in fast-growth individuals with age, but declines in slow-growth individuals. This illustration of increasing fecundity with age, even at the latest ages, deviates from standard expectations for reproductive senescence, as does the lack of increases in reproductive effort. We discuss our findings in light of recent theories regarding the phenomenon of increased reproduction throughout life in organisms with indeterminate growth and its potential to offset theoretical expectations for the ubiquity of senescence.

  8. Patterns of interventions and the effect of coalitions and sociality on male fitness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kulik, Lars; Muniz, Laura; Mundry, Roger; Widdig, Anja

    2012-02-01

    In group living animals, especially among primates, there is consistent evidence that high-ranking males gain a higher reproductive output than low-ranking males. Primate studies have shown that male coalitions and sociality can impact male fitness; however, it remains unclear whether males could potentially increase their fitness by preferentially supporting and socializing with females. Here we investigate patterns of male interventions and the effect of coalitions and sociality on male fitness in rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta) with particular focus on male-female interactions. We combined behavioural observations collected on Cayo Santiago with genetic data analysed for male reproductive output and relatedness. Our results revealed that the ten top-ranking males provided the majority of all male support observed. In contrast to other primates, male rhesus macaques mainly formed all-down coalitions suggesting that coalitions are less likely used to enhance male dominance. Males supporting females during and before their likely conception were not more likely to fertilize those females. We also found no evidence that males preferably support their offspring or other close kin. Interestingly, the most important predictor of male support was sociality, since opponents sharing a higher sociality index with a given male were more likely to be supported. Furthermore, a high sociality index of a given male-female dyad resulted in a higher probability of paternity. Overall, our results strengthen the evidence that sociality affects fitness in male primates, but also suggest that in species in which males queue for dominance, it is less likely that males derive fitness benefits from coalitions. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  9. Body Condition Indices Predict Reproductive Success but Not Survival in a Sedentary, Tropical Bird

    OpenAIRE

    Milenkaya, Olga; Catlin, Daniel H.; Legge, Sarah; Walters, Jeffrey R.

    2015-01-01

    Body condition may predict individual fitness because those in better condition have more resources to allocate towards improving their fitness. However, the hypothesis that condition indices are meaningful proxies for fitness has been questioned. Here, we ask if intraspecific variation in condition indices predicts annual reproductive success and survival. We monitored a population of Neochmia phaeton (crimson finch), a sedentary, tropical passerine, for reproductive success and survival ove...

  10. Resource allocation to reproduction in animals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kooijman, Sebastiaan A L M; Lika, Konstadia

    2014-11-01

    The standard Dynamic Energy Budget (DEB) model assumes that a fraction κ of mobilised reserve is allocated to somatic maintenance plus growth, while the rest is allocated to maturity maintenance plus maturation (in embryos and juveniles) or reproduction (in adults). All DEB parameters have been estimated for 276 animal species from most large phyla and all chordate classes. The goodness of fit is generally excellent. We compared the estimated values of κ with those that would maximise reproduction in fully grown adults with abundant food. Only 13% of these species show a reproduction rate close to the maximum possible (assuming that κ can be controlled), another 4% have κ lower than the optimal value, and 83% have κ higher than the optimal value. Strong empirical support hence exists for the conclusion that reproduction is generally not maximised. We also compared the parameters of the wild chicken with those of races selected for meat and egg production and found that the latter indeed maximise reproduction in terms of κ, while surface-specific assimilation was not affected by selection. We suggest that small values of κ relate to the down-regulation of maximum body size, and large values to the down-regulation of reproduction. We briefly discuss the ecological context for these findings. © 2014 The Authors. Biological Reviews © 2014 Cambridge Philosophical Society.

  11. Nearby grandmother enhances calf survival and reproduction in Asian elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lahdenperä, Mirkka; Mar, Khyne U; Lummaa, Virpi

    2016-06-10

    Usually animals reproduce into old age, but a few species such as humans and killer whales can live decades after their last reproduction. The grandmother hypothesis proposes that such life-history evolved through older females switching to invest in their existing (grand)offspring, thereby increasing their inclusive fitness and selection for post-reproductive lifespan. However, positive grandmother effects are also found in non-menopausal taxa, but evidence of their associated fitness effects is rare and only a few tests of the hypothesis in such species exist. Here we investigate the grandmother effects in Asian elephants. Using a multigenerational demographic dataset on semi-captive elephants in Myanmar, we found that grandcalves from young mothers (years) had 8 times lower mortality risk if the grandmother resided with her grandcalf compared to grandmothers residing elsewhere. Resident grandmothers also decreased their daughters' inter-birth intervals by one year. In contrast to the hypothesis predictions, the grandmother's own reproductive status did not modify such grandmother benefits. That elephant grandmothers increased their inclusive fitness by enhancing their daughter's reproductive rate and success irrespective of their own reproductive status suggests that fitness-enhancing grandmaternal effects are widespread, and challenge the view that grandmother effects alone select for menopause coupled with long post-reproductive lifespan.

  12. Reproduction (II): Human Control of Reproductive Processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jost, Alfred

    1970-01-01

    Describes methods of intervening in reproduction of animals and humans (artificial insemination, contraception, ovular and blastodisc transplants, pre selection of sex, cloning) and discusses the social implications of their use with humans. (AL)

  13. Fitness: Tips for Staying Motivated

    Science.gov (United States)

    Healthy Lifestyle Fitness Fitness is for life. Motivate yourself with these practical tips. By Mayo Clinic Staff Have ... 27, 2015 Original article: http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/fitness/in-depth/fitness/art-20047624 . Mayo Clinic ...

  14. An Assessment of the Potential Impact of Fortification of Staples and Condiments on Micronutrient Intake of Young Children and Women of Reproductive Age in Bangladesh

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Magali Leyvraz

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Bangladesh has experienced rapid economic growth and achieved major health improvements in the past decade, but malnutrition rates remain high. A nationally representative study conducted in 2011 assessed the dietary habits of 841 children 24–59 months old, 1428 children 6–14 years old, and 1412 nonpregnant, nonlactating women. The study’s objective was to assess dietary intakes of key micronutrients and the consumption pattern of potentially fortifiable foods, and then to model the potential impact of the fortification of key staple foods. The current intakes of several micronutrients—namely, iron, zinc, folate, vitamin A, and vitamin B12—were found to be insufficient to meet the needs of Bangladesh’s children and women. The fortification of rice with iron and zinc and edible oil with vitamin A has the potential to fill a significant part of the nutrient gap, as these are consumed widely and in significant amounts. Wheat flour and sugar are not as promising food vehicles in the Bangladeshi context, as they were consumed by a smaller portion of the population and in smaller amounts. In conclusion, fortification of rice and oil is recommended to address the large gap in micronutrient intakes.

  15. Fitness differences due to allelic variation at Esterase-4 locus in ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    KAVITA KRISHNAMOORTI

    2017-08-31

    Aug 31, 2017 ... Keywords. esterases; null allele; reproductive fitness; natural selection; Drosophila ananassae. .... cific substrate (1-naphthylacetate AR) and stain (fast blue. RR). On the ... transferred to fresh food vials and eggs were counted.

  16. Female gonadal hormones and reproductive behaviors as key determinants of successful reproductive output of breeding whooping cranes (Grus americana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Megan E; Converse, Sarah J; Chandler, Jane N; Shafer, Charles; Brown, Janine L; Keefer, Carol L; Songsasen, Nucharin

    2016-05-01

    Reproductive success of endangered whooping cranes (Grus americana) maintained ex situ is poor. As part of an effort to identify potential causes of poor reproductive success in a captive colony, we used non-invasive endocrine monitoring to assess gonadal and adrenal steroids of bird pairs with various reproductive outcomes and evaluated the relationships of hormones and behaviors to reproductive performance. Overall, reproductively successful (i.e., egg laying) females had significantly higher mean estrogen levels but lower mean progestogen concentrations than did unsuccessful females. Other hormones, including glucocorticoids and androgens, were not significantly different between successful and unsuccessful individuals. Observations of specific behaviors such as unison calling, marching, and the number of copulation attempts, along with overall time spent performing reproductive behaviors, were significantly higher in successful pairs. Our findings indicate that overall reproductive performance of whooping crane pairs is linked to female gonadal hormone excretion and reproductive behaviors, but not to altered adrenal hormone production. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  17. Female gonadal hormones and reproductive behaviors as key determinants of successful reproductive output of breeding whooping cranes (Grus americana)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Megan E; Converse, Sarah J.; Chandler, Jane N.; Shafer, Charles; Brown, Janine L; Keefer, Carol L; Songsasen, Nucharin

    2016-01-01

    Reproductive success of endangered whooping cranes (Grus americana) maintained ex situ is poor. As part of an effort to identify potential causes of poor reproductive success in a captive colony, we used non-invasive endocrine monitoring to assess gonadal and adrenal steroids of bird pairs with various reproductive outcomes and evaluated the relationships of hormones and behaviors to reproductive performance. Overall, reproductively successful (i.e., egg laying) females had significantly higher mean estrogen levels but lower mean progestogen concentrations than did unsuccessful females. Other hormones, including glucocorticoids and androgens, were not significantly different between successful and unsuccessful individuals. Observations of specific behaviors such as unison calling, marching, and the number of copulation attempts, along with overall time spent performing reproductive behaviors, were significantly higher in successful pairs. Our findings indicate that overall reproductive performance of whooping crane pairs is linked to female gonadal hormone excretion and reproductive behaviors, but not to altered adrenal hormone production.

  18. Limitations of inclusive fitness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Benjamin; Nowak, Martin A; Wilson, Edward O

    2013-12-10

    Until recently, inclusive fitness has been widely accepted as a general method to explain the evolution of social behavior. Affirming and expanding earlier criticism, we demonstrate that inclusive fitness is instead a limited concept, which exists only for a small subset of evolutionary processes. Inclusive fitness assumes that personal fitness is the sum of additive components caused by individual actions. This assumption does not hold for the majority of evolutionary processes or scenarios. To sidestep this limitation, inclusive fitness theorists have proposed a method using linear regression. On the basis of this method, it is claimed that inclusive fitness theory (i) predicts the direction of allele frequency changes, (ii) reveals the reasons for these changes, (iii) is as general as natural selection, and (iv) provides a universal design principle for evolution. In this paper we evaluate these claims, and show that all of them are unfounded. If the objective is to analyze whether mutations that modify social behavior are favored or opposed by natural selection, then no aspect of inclusive fitness theory is needed.

  19. Fitness consequences of divorce in the oystercatcher, Haematopus ostralegus

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heg, Dik; Bruinzeel, Leo W.; Ens, Bruno J.

    We investigated the fitness consequences of divorce in oystercatchers. We made a distinction between two types of divorce: in desertions the disruption of the pair bond is initiated by one of the pair members, and in usurpations by a conspecific individual. Survival and reproduction prospects for

  20. GOSSIP: SED fitting code

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franzetti, Paolo; Scodeggio, Marco

    2012-10-01

    GOSSIP fits the electro-magnetic emission of an object (the SED, Spectral Energy Distribution) against synthetic models to find the simulated one that best reproduces the observed data. It builds-up the observed SED of an object (or a large sample of objects) combining magnitudes in different bands and eventually a spectrum; then it performs a chi-square minimization fitting procedure versus a set of synthetic models. The fitting results are used to estimate a number of physical parameters like the Star Formation History, absolute magnitudes, stellar mass and their Probability Distribution Functions.

  1. Fitness Club / Nordic Walking

    CERN Multimedia

    Fitness Club

    2011-01-01

    Nordic Walking at CERN Enrollments are open for Nordic Walking courses and outings at CERN. Classes will be on Tuesdays as of 20 September, and outings for the more experienced will be on Thursdays as of 15 September. We meet at the CERN Club barracks car park (near entrance A). • 18:00 to 19:00 on 20 & 27 September, as well as 4 & 11 October. Check out our schedule and rates and enroll at: http://cern.ch/club-fitness Hope to see you among us! CERN Fitness Club fitness.club@cern.ch  

  2. An Insight in the Reproductive Biology of Therophilus javanus (Hymenoptera, Braconidae, and Agathidinae, a Potential Biological Control Agent against the Legume Pod Borer (Lepidoptera, Crambidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Djibril Aboubakar Souna

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Therophilus javanus is a koinobiont, solitary larval endoparasitoid currently being considered as a biological control agent against the pod borer Maruca vitrata, a devastating cowpea pest causing 20–80% crop losses in West Africa. We investigated ovary morphology and anatomy, oogenesis, potential fecundity, and egg load in T. javanus, as well as the effect of factors such as age of the female and parasitoid/host size at oviposition on egg load. The number of ovarioles was found to be variable and significantly influenced by the age/size of the M. vitrata caterpillar when parasitized. Egg load also was strongly influenced by both the instar of M. vitrata caterpillar at the moment of parasitism and wasp age. The practical implications of these findings for improving mass rearing of the parasitoid toward successful biological control of M. vitrata are discussed.

  3. Social Rank, Stress, Fitness, and Life Expectancy in Wild Rabbits

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Holst, Dietrich; Hutzelmeyer, Hans; Kaetzke, Paul; Khaschei, Martin; Schönheiter, Ronald

    Wild rabbits of the two sexes have separate linear rank orders, which are established and maintained by intensive fights. The social rank of individuals strongly influence their fitness: males and females that gain a high social rank, at least at the outset of their second breeding season, have a much higher lifetime fitness than subordinate individuals. This is because of two separate factors: a much higher fecundity and annual reproductive success and a 50% longer reproductive life span. These results are in contrast to the view in evolutionary biology that current reproduction can be increased only at the expense of future survival and/or fecundity. These concepts entail higher physiological costs in high-ranking mammals, which is not supported by our data: In wild rabbits the physiological costs of social positions are caused predominantly by differential psychosocial stress responses that are much lower in high-ranking than in low-ranking individuals.

  4. Reproductive toxicity of carbon nanomaterials: a review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vasyukova, I.; Gusev, A.; Tkachev, A.

    2015-11-01

    In the current review, we assembled the experimental evidences of an association between carbon nanomaterials including carbon black, graphite nanoplatelets, graphene, single- and multi-walled carbon nanotubes, and fullerene exposure and adverse reproductive and developmental effects, in vitro and in vivo studies. It is shown that carbon nanomaterials reveal toxic effect on reproductive system and offspring development of the animals of various system groups to a certain degree depending on carbon crystal structure. Although this paper provides initial information about the potential male and female reproductive toxicity of carbon nanomaterials, further studies, using characterized nanoparticles, relevant routes of administration, and doses closely reflecting all the expected levels of exposure are needed.

  5. Genes underlying reproductive division of labor in termites, with comparisons to social Hymenoptera

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Judith eKorb

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available All social insects are characterized by a reproductive division of labor. Within a colony only a few individuals reproduce (queens and in termites, also a king while the large majority (workers and soldiers forgo reproduction, at least temporarily. The evolution of such reproductive altruism can ultimately be explained by inclusive fitness theory. Here, I will review the proximate genetic mechanisms underlying this altruism in termites. As social cockroaches they evolved eusociality independently from the social Hymenoptera, which makes them interesting test cases to look for common underlying mechanisms of eusociality and lineage specific idiosyncrasies. First, I will provide a summary of the genes and their function that have been identified to underlie reproductive division of labor - so called 'queen genes,' - in the drywood termite Cryptotermes secundus, an emerging model to study termite social evolution. Second, I outline how widespread these queen genes are across the termite phylogeny, using also evidence from recent genome analyses. I will provide hypotheses about the evolutionary origin of these queen genes, aiming to link proximate mechanisms with ultimate functions. Finally, I will draw comparisons to social Hymenoptera to indicate potential common underpinnings that warrant further testing.

  6. Effects of nectar robbing on male and female reproductive success of a pollinator-dependent plant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rojas-Nossa, Sandra V; Sánchez, José María; Navarro, Luis

    2016-02-01

    Nectar robbers affect host fitness in different ways and by different magnitudes, both directly and indirectly, and potentially constitute an important part of pollination interactions. The aim of this study was to assess the effect of nectar robbing on several variables that characterize the reproductive success of Lonicera etrusca, a pollinator-dependent plant with long, tubular flowers that produce abundant nectar. Using fluorescent powder dye as a proxy for pollen, the distance of pollen dispersal was compared for robbed and non-robbed flowers. Artificial nectar robbing treatments were applied to test its effects on four additional measures of reproductive success, namely the quantity of pollen exported, fruit set, seed/ovule ratio and seed weight. Nectar robbing was not found to have any significant negative consequences on female and male components of reproductive success as determined through the five variables that were measured. Although L. etrusca exhibits high levels of nectar robbing and nectar robbers are common floral visitors, no evidence was found of detrimental changes in the components of reproductive success. A combination of morphological and ecological mechanisms is proposed to explain how plants may compensate for the energetic loss caused by the nectar robbers. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Annals of Botany Company. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  7. Reproductive strategies in snakes.

    OpenAIRE

    Shine, Richard

    2003-01-01

    Snakes of both sexes display remarkable flexibility and diversity in their reproductive tactics. Many features of reproduction in female snakes (such as reproductive mode and frequency, seasonality and multiple mating) allow flexible maternal control. For example, females can manipulate not only the genotypes of their offspring (through mate choice or enhanced sperm competition) but also the phenotypes of their offspring (through allocation 'decisions', behavioural and physiological thermoreg...

  8. Measuring Your Fitness Level

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... online calculator. If you'd rather do the math yourself, divide your weight in pounds by your ... Human Services recommends one of the following activity levels for adult fitness and health benefits: 150 minutes ...

  9. The universal Higgs fit

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Giardino, P. P.; Kannike, K.; Masina, I.

    2014-01-01

    We perform a state-of-the-art global fit to all Higgs data. We synthesise them into a 'universal' form, which allows to easily test any desired model. We apply the proposed methodology to extract from data the Higgs branching ratios, production cross sections, couplings and to analyse composite...... Higgs models, models with extra Higgs doublets, supersymmetry, extra particles in the loops, anomalous top couplings, and invisible Higgs decays into Dark Matter. Best fit regions lie around the Standard Model predictions and are well approximated by our 'universal' fit. Latest data exclude the dilaton...... as an alternative to the Higgs, and disfavour fits with negative Yukawa couplings. We derive for the first time the SM Higgs boson mass from the measured rates, rather than from the peak positions, obtaining M-h = 124.4 +/- 1.6 GeV....

  10. ACSM Fit Society Page

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... fitness topics. Expert commentary and features on exercise, nutrition, sports and health offer tips and techniques for maintaining ... Special Populations 2011 -- Behavior Change & Exercise Adherence 2011 -- ... Preparing for Fall Sports 2009 -- Cancer and Exercise 2008 -- Group Exercise 2008 -- ...

  11. Driver fitness medical guidelines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-09-01

    This guide provides guidance to assist licensing agencies in making decisions about an individuals fitness for driving. This is the first attempt to produce a consolidated document covering medical conditions included in the task agreement between...

  12. Influence of anthropogenic stress on fitness and behaviour of a key-species of estuarine ecosystems, the ragworm Nereis diversicolor

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mouneyrac, C., E-mail: catherine.mouneyrac@uco.f [MMS, EA2160, Faculte de pharmacie, 1 rue G. Veil, BP 53508, 44035 Nantes Cedex 1 (France); Institut de Biologie et Ecologie Appliquee, CEREA, Universite Catholique de l' Ouest, 3 Place Andre Leroy, Angers, 44 rue Rabelais, 49008 Angers Cedex 01 (France); Perrein-Ettajani, H. [MMS, EA2160, Faculte de pharmacie, 1 rue G. Veil, BP 53508, 44035 Nantes Cedex 1 (France); Institut de Biologie et Ecologie Appliquee, CEREA, Universite Catholique de l' Ouest, 3 Place Andre Leroy, Angers, 44 rue Rabelais, 49008 Angers Cedex 01 (France); Amiard-Triquet, C. [CNRS, Universite de Nantes, MMS, EA2160, Faculte de pharmacie, 1 rue G. Veil, BP 53508, 44035 Nantes Cedex 1 (France)

    2010-01-15

    Fitness, (biometric measurements, reproduction) and behaviour that are ecologically relevant biomarkers in assessing the quality of estuarine sediments were studied by comparing the responses of the polychaete worm Nereis diversicolor - a key species in estuaries - along a pollution gradient. Intersite differences were shown for all the measured parameters: size-weight relationships, energy reserves as glycogen and lipids, sexual maturation patterns, total number of oocytes per female, total and relative fecundity, burrowing behaviour. The physiological and behavioural status of N. diversicolor was consistently disturbed in the larger, most contaminated estuaries (Loire and Seine, Fr.) compared to reference sites (Bay of Bourgneuf, Goyen estuary, Fr.). Many classes of potentially toxic chemicals present in these estuaries most likely contribute to these impairments but food availability may act as a confounding factor, interfering with the potential impact of contaminants. - Fitness, and behaviour in Nereis diversicolor are affected by anthropogenic pressure.

  13. Reproductive and developmental toxicology

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Gupta, Ramesh C

    2011-01-01

    .... Reproductive and Developmental Toxicology is a comprehensive and authoritative resource providing the latest literature enriched with relevant references describing every aspect of this area of science...

  14. The Langley Fitness Center

    Science.gov (United States)

    1993-01-01

    NASA Langley recognizes the importance of healthy employees by committing itself to offering a complete fitness program. The scope of the program focuses on promoting overall health and wellness in an effort to reduce the risks of illness and disease and to increase productivity. This is accomplished through a comprehensive Health and Fitness Program offered to all NASA employees. Various aspects of the program are discussed.

  15. dftools: Distribution function fitting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Obreschkow, Danail

    2018-05-01

    dftools, written in R, finds the most likely P parameters of a D-dimensional distribution function (DF) generating N objects, where each object is specified by D observables with measurement uncertainties. For instance, if the objects are galaxies, it can fit a mass function (D=1), a mass-size distribution (D=2) or the mass-spin-morphology distribution (D=3). Unlike most common fitting approaches, this method accurately accounts for measurement in uncertainties and complex selection functions.

  16. Phytoremediation Potential of Maná-Cubiu (Solanum sessiliflorum Dunal for the Deleterious Effects of Methylmercury on the Reproductive System of Rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raquel Frenedoso da Silva

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Methylmercury, organic form of mercury, can increase the number of abnormal sperm and decrease sperm concentration and testosterone levels possibly due to the damage caused by reactive species to germ and Leydig cells. Maná-cubiu (Solanum sessiliflorum Dunal is a native fruit from Amazon rich in iron, zinc, niacin, pectin, and citric acid, used in foods, beverages, and medicinal purposes, since it has been useful for treatment of various diseases caused by oxidative stress or nutritional deficiency. Therefore, this study evaluated the phytoremediation potential of this fruit on damages caused by exposure to MeHg on sperm quantity and quality and the histological aspect of the testis and epididymis. Wistar male rats (n=20 were randomly allocated into four groups: Control group (received distilled water, MeHg group (140 μg/Kg, Solanum group (1% of fruit Maná-cubiu on chow, and Solanum plus MeHg group (same treatment as MeHg and Solanum group. The organs were weighted, histopathology; sperm morphology and counts were obtained. The results showed reduction in body weight gain, testis weights, reduced sperm production, and increased histopathological abnormalities in the MeHg-treated group. However, treatment with Solanum plus MeHg revealed a protective effect of this fruit on damages caused by MeHg.

  17. Timing of initial arrival at the breeding site predicts age at first reproduction in a long-lived migratory bird

    Science.gov (United States)

    Becker, Peter H.; Dittmann, Tobias; Ludwigs, Jan-Dieter; Limmer, Bente; Ludwig, Sonja C.; Bauch, Christina; Braasch, Alexander; Wendeln, Helmut

    2008-01-01

    In long-lived vertebrates, individuals generally visit potential breeding areas or populations during one or more seasons before reproducing for the first time. During these years of prospecting, they select a future breeding site, colony, or mate and improve various skills and their physical condition to meet the requirements of reproduction. One precondition of successful reproduction is arrival in time on the breeding grounds. Here, we study the intricate links among the date of initial spring arrival, body mass, sex, and the age of first breeding in the common tern Sterna hirundo, a long-lived migratory colonial seabird. The study is based on a unique, individual-based, long-term dataset of sexed birds, marked with transponders, which allow recording their individual arrival, overall attendance, and clutch initiation remotely and automatically year by year over the entire lifetime at the natal colony site. We show that the seasonal date of initial arrival at the breeding grounds predicts the individual age at first reproduction, which mostly occurs years later. Late first-time arrivals remain delayed birds throughout subsequent years. Our findings reveal that timing of arrival at the site of reproduction and timing of reproduction itself are coherent parameters of individual quality, which are linked with the prospects of the breeding career and may have consequences for fitness. PMID:18711134

  18. Self-Fitting Hearing Aids

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gitte Keidser

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available A self-contained, self-fitting hearing aid (SFHA is a device that enables the user to perform both threshold measurements leading to a prescribed hearing aid setting and fine-tuning, without the need for audiological support or access to other equipment. The SFHA has been proposed as a potential solution to address unmet hearing health care in developing countries and remote locations in the developed world and is considered a means to lower cost and increase uptake of hearing aids in developed countries. This article reviews the status of the SFHA and the evidence for its feasibility and challenges and predicts where it is heading. Devices that can be considered partly or fully self-fitting without audiological support were identified in the direct-to-consumer market. None of these devices are considered self-contained as they require access to other hardware such as a proprietary interface, computer, smartphone, or tablet for manipulation. While there is evidence that self-administered fitting processes can provide valid and reliable results, their success relies on user-friendly device designs and interfaces and easy-to-interpret instructions. Until these issues have been sufficiently addressed, optional assistance with the self-fitting process and on-going use of SFHAs is recommended. Affordability and a sustainable delivery system remain additional challenges for the SFHA in developing countries. Future predictions include a growth in self-fitting products, with most future SFHAs consisting of earpieces that connect wirelessly with a smartphone and providers offering assistance through a telehealth infrastructure, and the integration of SFHAs into the traditional hearing health-care model.

  19. Persistent organic pollutants and male reproductive health

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anne Vested

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Environmental contaminants such as persistent organic pollutants (POPs are man-made bioaccumulative compounds with long half-lives that are found throughout the world as a result of heavy use in a variety of consumer products during the twentieth century. Wildlife and animal studies have long suggested adverse effects of exposure to these compounds on human reproductive health, which, according to the endocrine disrupter hypothesis, are ascribed to the compounds' potential to interfere with endocrine signaling, especially when exposure occurs during certain phases of fetal and childhood development. An extensive number of epidemiological studies have addressed the possible effects of exposure to POPs on male reproductive health, but the results are conflicting. Thus far, most studies have focused on investigating exposure and the different reproductive health outcomes during adulthood. Some studies have addressed the potential harmful effects of fetal exposure with respect to malformations at birth and/or reproductive development, whereas only a few studies have been able to evaluate whether intrauterine exposure to POPs has long-term consequences for male reproductive health with measurable effects on semen quality markers and reproductive hormone levels in adulthood. Humans are not exposed to a single compound at a time, but rather, to a variety of different substances with potential divergent hormonal effects. Hence, how to best analyze epidemiological data on combined exposures remains a significant challenge. This review on POPs will focus on current knowledge regarding the potential effects of exposure to POPs during fetal and childhood life and during adulthood on male reproductive health, including a critical revision of the endocrine disruption hypothesis, a comment on pubertal development as part of reproductive development and a comment on how to account for combined exposures in epidemiological research.

  20. Employers' views on the fit note.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kotze, E

    2014-12-01

    The fit note replaced the sick note in 2010. The statement of fitness for work (fit note) is expected to benefit the British economy by helping more people stay in work and prevent long-term sickness absence. Understanding and responding to employers' views on the fit note is key, in order for this goal to be achieved. To explore employers' views on the fit note. A qualitative study was undertaken and face-to-face interviews were conducted with participants representing employers from a variety of industries. There were 21 participants who were mainly human resources officers and line managers. Employers welcomed the introduction of the fit note and felt that it was an improvement on the sick note. The majority of employers felt the fit note had the potential to promote an earlier return to work, if used properly. The main problems reported were the completion of the fit notes and quality of advice received from general practitioners. Employers felt that the most helpful advice came from fit notes with information on the functional effects of the medical condition. Some employers found return to work decisions problematic. The fit note has the potential to promote an earlier return to work. In order for the fit note to achieve its aim, further understanding of the difficulties employers are having when making return to work decisions is important, in order to develop guidance to enable them to provide the practical support employees need to return to work sooner. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society of Occupational Medicine. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  1. Paralichthys patagonicus spawning areas and reproductive potential in the Bonaerense Coastal Zone, Argentina (34°-42°S Áreas de desove y potencial reproductivo de Paralichthys patagonicus en la Zona Costera Bonaerense, Argentina (34°-42°S

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    María Inés Militelli

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available The reproductive biology of Patagonian flounder (Paralichthys patagonicus was studied in the Bonaerense Coastal Zone (34°-42°S using samples collected in December 2003 and 2005. According to the literature, the data were analyzed considering two population groups: one in the northern zone (34°-38°S and another in El Rincón (38°-42°S. The estimated size at first maturity for both sexes in 2003 was 31.57 cm TL for the northern zone and 29.58 cm TL for El Rincón. In 2005, the L50 was only estimated for the northern zone, and the value obtained was less than that of 2003 (27.82 cm TL. In December 2003, the greatest reproductive activity took place in El Rincón. However, in December 2005, the highest proportions of hydrated fe-males were observed in the northern area. This could be due to the cooler temperatures recorded for this zone, as compared with 2003. Batch fecundity showed a potential fit to size and a lineal fit to weight and ranged from 14,685 (30 cm TL to 153,717 ( 59 cm TL hydrated oocytes. Relative fecundity oscillated between 24 and 170 hydrated oocytes/g. The values of these parameters differed between years and among population groups. These differences could be attributed in part to the difference in seawater temperature between the two years, especially the high temperatures observed in 2005.Se estudió la biología reproductiva del lenguado (Paralichthys patagonicus en la Zona Costera Bonaerense (34°-42°S. El material provino de muestreos realizados durante diciembre de 2003 y 2005. En base a la bibliografía los datos fueron analizados teniendo en cuenta dos grupos poblacionales, uno en el norte (34-38°S y otro en El Rincón (38-42°S. La estimación de la talla de primera madurez en 2003 para ambos sexos fue de 31.57 cm. LT para la zona norte y de 29.58 cm LT para El Rincón. En 2005 solo se pudo estimar el L50 para la zona norte y el valor obtenido fue menor al 2003 (27.82 cm. LT. En diciembre del 2003 la mayor

  2. Riboflavin Provisioning Underlies Wolbachia’s Fitness Contribution to Its Insect Host

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moriyama, Minoru; Nikoh, Naruo; Hosokawa, Takahiro

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Endosymbiotic bacteria of the genus Wolbachia represent the most successful symbiotic bacteria in the terrestrial ecosystem. The success of Wolbachia has been ascribed to its remarkable phenotypic effects on host reproduction, such as cytoplasmic incompatibility, whereby maternally inherited bacteria can spread in their host populations at the expense of their host’s fitness. Meanwhile, recent theoretical as well as empirical studies have unveiled that weak and/or conditional positive fitness effects may significantly facilitate invasion and spread of Wolbachia infections in host populations. Here, we report a previously unrecognized nutritional aspect, the provision of riboflavin (vitamin B2), that potentially underpins the Wolbachia-mediated fitness benefit to insect hosts. A comparative genomic survey for synthetic capability of B vitamins revealed that only the synthesis pathway for riboflavin is highly conserved among diverse insect-associated Wolbachia strains, while the synthesis pathways for other B vitamins were either incomplete or absent. Molecular phylogenetic and genomic analyses of riboflavin synthesis genes from diverse Wolbachia strains revealed that, in general, their phylogenetic relationships are concordant with Wolbachia’s genomic phylogeny, suggesting that the riboflavin synthesis genes have been stably maintained in the course of Wolbachia evolution. In rearing experiments with bedbugs (Cimex lectularius) on blood meals in which B vitamin contents were manipulated, we demonstrated that Wolbachia’s riboflavin provisioning significantly contributes to growth, survival, and reproduction of the insect host. These results provide a physiological basis upon which Wolbachia-mediated positive fitness consequences are manifested and shed new light on the ecological and evolutionary relevance of Wolbachia infections. PMID:26556278

  3. Race, genetics, and human reproductive strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rushton, J P

    1996-02-01

    The international literature on racial differences is reviewed, novel data are reported, and a distinct pattern is found. People of east Asian ancestry and people of African ancestry average at opposite ends of a continuum, with people of European ancestry averaging intermediately, albeit with much variability within each major race. The racial matrix emerges from measures taken of reproductive behavior, sex hormones, twinning rate, speed of physical maturation, personality, family stability, brain size, intelligence, law abidingness, and social organization. An evolutionary theory of human reproduction is proposed, familiar to biologists as the r-K scale of reproductive strategies. At one end of this scale are r-strategies, which emphasize high reproductive rates; at the other end are K-strategies, which emphasize high levels of parental investment. This scale is generally used to compare the life histories of widely disparate species, but here it is used to describe the immensely smaller variations among human races. It is hypothesized that, again on average, Mongoloid people are more K-selected than Caucasoids, who are more K-selected than Negroids. The r-K scale of reproductive strategies is also mapped on to human evolution. Genetic distances indicate that Africans emerged from the ancestral hominid line about 200,000 years ago, with an African/non-African split about 110,000 years ago, and a Caucasoid/Mongoloid split about 41,000 years ago. Such an ordering fits with and explains how and why the variables cluster.

  4. Facultative symbiont infections affect aphid reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simon, Jean-Christophe; Boutin, Sébastien; Tsuchida, Tsutomu; Koga, Ryuichi; Le Gallic, Jean-François; Frantz, Adrien; Outreman, Yannick; Fukatsu, Takema

    2011-01-01

    Some bacterial symbionts alter their hosts reproduction through various mechanisms that enhance their transmission in the host population. In addition to its obligatory symbiont Buchnera aphidicola, the pea aphid Acyrthosiphon pisum harbors several facultative symbionts influencing several aspects of host ecology. Aphids reproduce by cyclical parthenogenesis whereby clonal and sexual reproduction alternate within the annual life cycle. Many species, including the pea aphid, also show variation in their reproductive mode at the population level, with some lineages reproducing by cyclical parthenogenesis and others by permanent parthenogenesis. While the role of facultative symbionts has been well studied during the parthenogenetic phase of their aphid hosts, very little is known on their possible influence during the sexual phase. Here we investigated whether facultative symbionts modulate the capacity to produce sexual forms in various genetic backgrounds of the pea aphid with controlled symbiont composition and also in different aphid genotypes from natural populations with previously characterized infection status and reproductive mode. We found that most facultative symbionts exhibited detrimental effects on their hosts fitness under sex-inducing conditions in comparison with the reference lines. We also showed that the loss of sexual phase in permanently parthenogenetic lineages of A. pisum was not explained by facultative symbionts. Finally, we demonstrated that Spiroplasma infection annihilated the production of males in the host progeny by inducing a male-killing phenotype, an unexpected result for organisms such as aphids that reproduce primarily through clonal reproduction.

  5. Facultative symbiont infections affect aphid reproduction.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean-Christophe Simon

    Full Text Available Some bacterial symbionts alter their hosts reproduction through various mechanisms that enhance their transmission in the host population. In addition to its obligatory symbiont Buchnera aphidicola, the pea aphid Acyrthosiphon pisum harbors several facultative symbionts influencing several aspects of host ecology. Aphids reproduce by cyclical parthenogenesis whereby clonal and sexual reproduction alternate within the annual life cycle. Many species, including the pea aphid, also show variation in their reproductive mode at the population level, with some lineages reproducing by cyclical parthenogenesis and others by permanent parthenogenesis. While the role of facultative symbionts has been well studied during the parthenogenetic phase of their aphid hosts, very little is known on their possible influence during the sexual phase. Here we investigated whether facultative symbionts modulate the capacity to produce sexual forms in various genetic backgrounds of the pea aphid with controlled symbiont composition and also in different aphid genotypes from natural populations with previously characterized infection status and reproductive mode. We found that most facultative symbionts exhibited detrimental effects on their hosts fitness under sex-inducing conditions in comparison with the reference lines. We also showed that the loss of sexual phase in permanently parthenogenetic lineages of A. pisum was not explained by facultative symbionts. Finally, we demonstrated that Spiroplasma infection annihilated the production of males in the host progeny by inducing a male-killing phenotype, an unexpected result for organisms such as aphids that reproduce primarily through clonal reproduction.

  6. UV-Stressed Daphnia pulex Increase Fitness through Uptake of Vitamin D3.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra J Connelly

    Full Text Available Ultraviolet radiation is known to be highly variable in aquatic ecosystems. It has been suggested that UV-exposed organisms may demonstrate enough phenotypic plasticity to maintain the relative fitness of natural populations. Our long-term objective is to determine the potential photoprotective effect of vitamin D3 on Daphnia pulex exposed to acute or chronic UV radiation. Herein we report our initial findings in this endeavor. D. pulex survival and reproduction (fitness was monitored for 5 d as a proof of concept study. Significantly higher fitness was observed in the D. pulex with D3 than those without (most extreme effects observed were 0% survival in the absence of D3 and 100% with 10 ppm D3. Vitamin D3 was isolated from the culture media, the algal food (Pseudokirchneriella, and the D. pulex and quantified using high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC. Vitamin D3 was fluorescently labeled using a phenothiazinium dye and added to cultures of D. pulex. Images demonstrating the uptake of D3 into the tissues and carapace of the D. pulex were acquired. Our initial findings suggest a positive role for D3 in ecosystems as both UV-stressed algae and Daphnia sequester D3, and D. pulex demonstrate increased fitness in the presence of D3.

  7. Social phenotype extended to communities: expanded multilevel social selection analysis reveals fitness consequences of interspecific interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campobello, Daniela; Hare, James F; Sarà, Maurizio

    2015-04-01

    In social species, fitness consequences are associated with both individual and social phenotypes. Social selection analysis has quantified the contribution of conspecific social traits to individual fitness. There has been no attempt, however, to apply a social selection approach to quantify the fitness implications of heterospecific social phenotypes. Here, we propose a novel social selection based approach integrating the role of all social interactions at the community level. We extended multilevel selection analysis by including a term accounting for the group phenotype of heterospecifics. We analyzed nest activity as a model social trait common to two species, the lesser kestrel (Falco naumanni) and jackdaw (Corvus monedula), nesting in either single- or mixed-species colonies. By recording reproductive outcome as a measure of relative fitness, our results reveal an asymmetric system wherein only jackdaw breeding performance was affected by the activity phenotypes of both conspecific and heterospecific neighbors. Our model incorporating heterospecific social phenotypes is applicable to animal communities where interacting species share a common social trait, thus allowing an assessment of the selection pressure imposed by interspecific interactions in nature. Finally, we discuss the potential role of ecological limitations accounting for random or preferential assortments among interspecific social phenotypes, and the implications of such processes to community evolution. © 2015 The Author(s).

  8. Herbivore-mediated ecological costs of reproduction shape the life history of an iteroparous plant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Tom E X; Tenhumberg, Brigitte; Louda, Svata M

    2008-02-01

    Plant reproduction yields immediate fitness benefits but can be costly in terms of survival, growth, and future fecundity. Life-history theory posits that reproductive strategies are shaped by trade-offs between current and future fitness that result from these direct costs of reproduction. Plant reproduction may also incur indirect ecological costs if it increases susceptibility to herbivores. Yet ecological costs of reproduction have received little empirical attention and remain poorly integrated into life-history theory. Here, we provide evidence for herbivore-mediated ecological costs of reproduction, and we develop theory to examine how these costs influence plant life-history strategies. Field experiments with an iteroparous cactus (Opuntia imbricata) indicated that greater reproductive effort (proportion of meristems allocated to reproduction) led to greater attack by a cactus-feeding insect (Narnia pallidicornis) and that damage by this herbivore reduced reproductive success. A dynamic programming model predicted strongly divergent optimal reproductive strategies when ecological costs were included, compared with when these costs were ignored. Meristem allocation by cacti in the field matched the optimal strategy expected under ecological costs of reproduction. The results indicate that plant reproductive allocation can strongly influence the intensity of interactions with herbivores and that associated ecological costs can play an important selective role in the evolution of plant life histories.

  9. The Reproduction of Intelligence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meisenberg, Gerhard

    2010-01-01

    Although a negative relationship between fertility and education has been described consistently in most countries of the world, less is known about the relationship between intelligence and reproductive outcomes. Also the paths through which intelligence influences reproductive outcomes are uncertain. The present study uses the NLSY79 to analyze…

  10. Antibiotic-Mediated Inhibition of Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome Virus (PRRSV Infection: A Novel Quinolone Function Which Potentiates the Antiviral Cytokine Response in MARC-145 Cells and Pig Macrophages

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William A. Cafruny

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV is an economically significant agent for which there currently are no effective treatments. Development of antiviral agents for PRRSV as well as many other viruses has been limited by toxicity of known antiviral compounds. In contrast, antibiotics for non-virus microbial infections have been widely useful, in part because of their acceptable toxicity in animals. We report here the discovery that the quinolonecontaining compound Plasmocin™, as well as the quinolones nalidixic acid and ciprofloxacin, have potent anti-PRRSV activity in vitro. PRRSV replication was inhibited by these antibiotics in both cultured MARC-145 cells and cultured primary alveolar porcine macrophages (PAMs. Furthermore, sub-optimal concentrations of nalidixic acid synergized with antiviral cytokines (AK-2 or IFN-γ to quantitatively and qualitatively inhibit PRRSV replication in MARC-145 cells or PAMs. The antiviral activity of Plasmocin and nalidixic acid correlated with reduced actin expression in MARC-145 cells. Replication of the related lactate dehydrogenase-elevating virus (LDV was also inhibited in primary mouse macrophages by Plasmocin. These results are significant to the development of antiviral strategies with potentially reduced toxicity, and provide a model system to better understand regulation of arterivirus replication.

  11. Nanotechnology in reproductive medicine: emerging applications of nanomaterials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barkalina, Natalia; Charalambous, Charis; Jones, Celine; Coward, Kevin

    2014-07-01

    In the last decade, nanotechnology has been extensively introduced for biomedical applications, including bio-detection, drug delivery and diagnostic imaging, particularly in the field of cancer diagnostics and treatment. However, there is a growing trend towards the expansion of nanobiotechnological tools in a number of non-cancer applications. In this review, we discuss the emerging uses of nanotechnology in reproductive medicine and reproductive biology. For the first time, we summarise the available evidence regarding the use of nanomaterials as experimental tools for the detection and treatment of malignant and benign reproductive conditions. We also present an overview of potential applications for nanomaterials in reproductive biology, discuss the benefits and concerns associated with their use in a highly delicate system of reproductive tissues and gametes, and address the feasibility of this innovative and potentially controversial approach in the clinical setting and for investigative research into the mechanisms underlying reproductive diseases. This unique review paper focuses on the emerging use of nanotechnology in reproductive medicine and reproductive biology, highlighting the role of nanomaterials in the detection and treatment of various reproductive conditions, keeping in mind the benefits and potential concerns associated with nanomaterial use in the delicate system of reproductive tissue and gametes. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Direct fitness of group living mammals varies with breeding strategy, climate and fitness estimates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ebensperger, Luis A; Rivera, Daniela S; Hayes, Loren D

    2012-09-01

    1. Understanding how variation in fitness relates to variation in group living remains critical to determine whether this major aspect of social behaviour is currently adaptive. 2. Available evidence in social mammals aimed to examine this issue remains controversial. Studies show positive (i.e. potentially adaptive), neutral or even negative fitness effects of group living. 3. Attempts to explain this variation rely on intrinsic and extrinsic factors to social groups. Thus, relatively more positive fitness effects are predicted in singularly breeding as opposed to plural breeding species. Fitness effects of sociality in turn may depend on ecological conditions (i.e. extrinsic factors) that influence associated benefits and costs. 4. We used meta-analytic tools to review how breeding strategy or ecological conditions influence the effect size associated with direct fitness-sociality relationships reported in the mammalian literature. Additionally, we determined how taxonomic affiliation of species studied, different fitness and sociality measures used, and major climatic conditions of study sites explained any variation in direct fitness effect size. 5. We found group living had modest, yet positive effects on direct fitness. This generally adaptive scenario was contingent not only upon breeding strategy and climate of study sites, but also on fitness measures examined. Thus, positive and significant effects characterized singular as opposed to plural breeding strategies. 6. We found more positive fitness effects on studies conducted in tropical as opposed to temperate or arid climates. More positive and significant effects were noted on studies that relied on group fecundity, male fecundity and offspring survival as measures of fitness. 7. To conclude, direct fitness consequences of mammalian group living are driven by interspecific differences in breeding strategy and climate conditions. Other factors not examined in this study, namely individual variation in

  13. Fitting the Phenomenological MSSM

    CERN Document Server

    AbdusSalam, S S; Quevedo, F; Feroz, F; Hobson, M

    2010-01-01

    We perform a global Bayesian fit of the phenomenological minimal supersymmetric standard model (pMSSM) to current indirect collider and dark matter data. The pMSSM contains the most relevant 25 weak-scale MSSM parameters, which are simultaneously fit using `nested sampling' Monte Carlo techniques in more than 15 years of CPU time. We calculate the Bayesian evidence for the pMSSM and constrain its parameters and observables in the context of two widely different, but reasonable, priors to determine which inferences are robust. We make inferences about sparticle masses, the sign of the $\\mu$ parameter, the amount of fine tuning, dark matter properties and the prospects for direct dark matter detection without assuming a restrictive high-scale supersymmetry breaking model. We find the inferred lightest CP-even Higgs boson mass as an example of an approximately prior independent observable. This analysis constitutes the first statistically convergent pMSSM global fit to all current data.

  14. Strength Training: For Overall Fitness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Healthy Lifestyle Fitness Strength training is an important part of an overall fitness program. Here's what strength training can do for ... is a key component of overall health and fitness for everyone. Lean muscle mass naturally diminishes with ...

  15. Zika Virus in the Male Reproductive Tract

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liesel Stassen

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Arthropod-borne viruses (arboviruses are resurging across the globe. Zika virus (ZIKV has caused significant concern in recent years because it can lead to congenital malformations in babies and Guillain-Barré syndrome in adults. Unlike other arboviruses, ZIKV can be sexually transmitted and may persist in the male reproductive tract. There is limited information regarding the impact of ZIKV on male reproductive health and fertility. Understanding the mechanisms that underlie persistent ZIKV infections in men is critical to developing effective vaccines and therapies. Mouse and macaque models have begun to unravel the pathogenesis of ZIKV infection in the male reproductive tract, with the testes and prostate gland implicated as potential reservoirs for persistent ZIKV infection. Here, we summarize current knowledge regarding the pathogenesis of ZIKV in the male reproductive tract, the development of animal models to study ZIKV infection at this site, and prospects for vaccines and therapeutics against persistent ZIKV infection.

  16. The Future of human reproduction

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Overall, Christine

    1989-01-01

    ... Contradictions III SOCIAL POLICY QUESTIONS Pregnancy as Justification for Loss of Juridical Autonomy Sanda Rodgers 174 Prenatal Diagnosis: Reproductive Choice? Reproductive Control? Abby Lippman ...

  17. The future of human reproduction

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Overall, Christine

    1989-01-01

    ... Contradictions III SOCIAL POLICY QUESTIONS Pregnancy as Justification for Loss of Juridical Autonomy Sanda Rodgers 174 Prenatal Diagnosis: Reproductive Choice? Reproductive Control? Abby Lippman ...

  18. Diagnostic radiation of potentially reproductive females

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Abd El-Bagi, M E; Al-Mutairi, M S; Al-Thagafi, M A; Al-Masri, N M; Al-Sasi, O [Department of Radiology and Imaging, Armed Forces Hospital, Riyadh (Saudi Arabia)

    2001-03-01

    Objectives: To find out how consistent or variable is the understanding and practice of radiation protection procedures for women of childbearing age at a multispecialty tertiary hospital. Setting: Riyadh Military Hospital Study. Design: Non-clustered population survey. Methods: A questionnaire was distributed during grand rounds, mid-day clinics and a radiology conference. Questions included which radiation protection rule does the respondent use for females, whether he or she is familiar with those rules and what is his or her source of reference. Further questions were about the radiation dangers to the fetus. Results: Response was 95 (100%). Fifty-seven (60%) were males and 38 (40%) were females. The majority 50 (53%) were Saudis, 16 (17%) Western and 29 (30%) were other nationals. Sixty-two (65%) followed the old rule '10-day rule'; 17 (18%) followed the new '28-day rule' and 16 (17%) didn't know which rule to follow. None of those who followed the '28-day rule' indicated hospital policy as their reference. Conclusions: The understanding and practice of radiation protection guidelines for females is inconsistent. There is significant unfamiliarity with the radiation protection rules among our hospital practitioners. (author)

  19. Diagnostic radiation of potentially reproductive females

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Abd El-Bagi, M.E.; Al-Mutairi, M.S.; Al-Thagafi, M.A.; Al-Masri, N.M.; Al-Sasi, O.

    2001-01-01

    Objectives: To find out how consistent or variable is the understanding and practice of radiation protection procedures for women of childbearing age at a multispecialty tertiary hospital. Setting: Riyadh Military Hospital Study. Design: Non-clustered population survey. Methods: A questionnaire was distributed during grand rounds, mid-day clinics and a radiology conference. Questions included which radiation protection rule does the respondent use for females, whether he or she is familiar with those rules and what is his or her source of reference. Further questions were about the radiation dangers to the fetus. Results: Response was 95 (100%). Fifty-seven (60%) were males and 38 (40%) were females. The majority 50 (53%) were Saudis, 16 (17%) Western and 29 (30%) were other nationals. Sixty-two (65%) followed the old rule '10-day rule'; 17 (18%) followed the new '28-day rule' and 16 (17%) didn't know which rule to follow. None of those who followed the '28-day rule' indicated hospital policy as their reference. Conclusions: The understanding and practice of radiation protection guidelines for females is inconsistent. There is significant unfamiliarity with the radiation protection rules among our hospital practitioners. (author)

  20. Plant Fitness Assessment for Wild Relatives of Insect Resistant Bt-Crops

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. K. Letourneau

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available When field tests of transgenic plants are precluded by practical containment concerns, manipulative experiments can detect potential consequences of crop-wild gene flow. Using topical sprays of bacterial Bacillus thuringiensis larvicide (Bt and larval additions, we measured fitness effects of reduced herbivory on Brassica rapa (wild mustard and Raphanus sativus (wild radish. These species represent different life histories among the potential recipients of Bt transgenes from Bt cole crops in the US and Asia, for which rare spontaneous crosses are expected under high exposure. Protected wild radish and wild mustard seedlings had approximately half the herbivore damage of exposed plants and 55% lower seedling mortality, resulting in 27% greater reproductive success, 14-day longer life-spans, and 118% more seeds, on average. Seed addition experiments in microcosms and in situ indicated that wild radish was more likely to spread than wild mustard in coastal grasslands.

  1. Reproductive strategies in snakes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shine, Richard

    2003-05-22

    Snakes of both sexes display remarkable flexibility and diversity in their reproductive tactics. Many features of reproduction in female snakes (such as reproductive mode and frequency, seasonality and multiple mating) allow flexible maternal control. For example, females can manipulate not only the genotypes of their offspring (through mate choice or enhanced sperm competition) but also the phenotypes of their offspring (through allocation 'decisions', behavioural and physiological thermoregulation, and nest-site selection). Reliance on stored energy ('capital') to fuel breeding results in low frequencies of female reproduction and, in extreme cases, semelparity. A sophisticated vomeronasal system not only allows male snakes to locate reproductive females by following scent trails, but also facilitates pheromonally mediated mate choice by males. Male-male rivalry takes diverse forms, including female mimicry and mate guarding; combat bouts impose strong selection for large body size in males of some species. Intraspecific (geographical) variation and phenotypic plasticity in a wide array of reproductive traits (offspring size and number; reproductive frequency; incidence of multiple mating; male tactics such as mate guarding and combat; mate choice criteria) provide exceptional opportunities for future studies.

  2. Improving NEC Fit

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-09-01

    TAD Temporary Additional Duty TFMMS Total Force Manpower Management System UIC Unit Identification Code USFFC United States Fleet Forces Command...not include sailors on temporary additional duty ( TAD ). In addition, for class average Fit, we excluded units that had billets but no onboard

  3. Reliability and Model Fit

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stanley, Leanne M.; Edwards, Michael C.

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this article is to highlight the distinction between the reliability of test scores and the fit of psychometric measurement models, reminding readers why it is important to consider both when evaluating whether test scores are valid for a proposed interpretation and/or use. It is often the case that an investigator judges both the…

  4. Flower diversity and bee reproduction in an arid ecosystem

    OpenAIRE

    Dorado, Jimena; V?zquez, Diego P.

    2016-01-01

    Background: Diverse flower communities are more stable in floral resource production along the flowering season, but the question about how the diversity and stability of resources affect pollinator reproduction remains open. High plant diversity could favor short foraging trips, which in turn would enhance bee fitness. In addition to plant diversity, greater temporal stability of floral resources in diverse communities could favor pollinator fitness because such communities are likely to occ...

  5. Selective Reproductive Technologies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gammeltoft, Tine; Wahlberg, Ayo

    2014-01-01

    From a historical perspective, selective reproduction is nothing new. Infanticide, abandonment, and selective neglect of children have a long history, and the widespread deployment of sterilization and forced abortion in the twentieth century has been well documented. Yet in recent decades select......, discussing how selective reproduction engages with issues of long-standing theoretical concern in anthropology, such as politics, kinship, gender, religion, globalization, and inequality....... (ARTs), what we term selective reproductive technologies (SRTs) are of a more specific nature: Rather than aiming to overcome infertility, they are used to prevent or allow the birth of certain kinds of children. This review highlights anthropological research into SRTs in different parts of the world...

  6. Analyses between Reproductive Behavior, Genetic Diversity and Pythium Responsiveness in Zingiber spp. Reveal an Adaptive Significance for Hemiclonality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, Geethu E.; Geetha, Kiran A.; Augustine, Lesly; Mamiyil, Sabu; Thomas, George

    2016-01-01

    Mode of reproduction is generally considered to have long-range evolutionary implications on population survival. Because sexual reproduction produces genetically diverse genotypes, this mode of reproduction is predicted to positively influence the success potential of offspring in evolutionary arms race with parasites (Red queen) whereas, without segregation and recombination, the obligate asexual multiplication may push a species into extinction due to the steady accumulation of deleterious mutations (Muller’s ratchet). However, the extent of linearity between reproductive strategies, genetic diversity and population fitness, and the contributions of different breeding strategies to population fitness are yet to be understood clearly. Genus Zingiber belonging to the pan-tropic family Zingiberaceae represents a good system to study contributions of different breeding behavior on genetic diversity and population fitness, as this genus comprises species with contrasting breeding systems. In this study, we analyzed breeding behavior, amplified fragment length polymorphism diversity and response to the soft-rot pathogen Pythium aphanidermatum in 18 natural populations of three wild Zingiber spp.: Z. neesanum, Z. nimmonii, and Z. zerumbet, together with the obligately asexual cultivated congener, ginger (Z. officinale). Ginger showed an exceptionally narrow genetic base, and adding to this, all the tested cultivars were uniformly susceptible to soft-rot. Concordant with the postulates of Muller’s ratchet, the background selection may be continuously pushing ginger into the ancestral state, rendering it inefficient in host-pathogen coevolution. Z. neesanum and Z. nimmonii populations were sexual and genetically diverse; however, contrary to Red Queen expectations, the populations were highly susceptible to soft-rot. Z. zerumbet showed a hemiclonal breeding behavior. The populations inhabiting forest understory were large and continuous, sexual and genetically

  7. Lifespan and reproduction of isoclonal individual E.coli in different environments

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jouvet, Lionel; Steiner, Ulrich

    Lifespan and reproduction are key fitness components, both of which are influences by genetics and the environment. Tracking large numbers of genotypically known individuals throughout their lives in known environments has been challenging. Here we show for isogenic individual E. coli bacteria...... under controlled environments how demographic parameters and distributions in reproduction and survival change across environments. We achieve this by using a microfluidic device that traps thousands of individual E. coli cells and tracks their division (reproduction) over their lifespan. Our results...

  8. Fitting PAC spectra with stochastic models: PolyPacFit

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zacate, M. O., E-mail: zacatem1@nku.edu [Northern Kentucky University, Department of Physics and Geology (United States); Evenson, W. E. [Utah Valley University, College of Science and Health (United States); Newhouse, R.; Collins, G. S. [Washington State University, Department of Physics and Astronomy (United States)

    2010-04-15

    PolyPacFit is an advanced fitting program for time-differential perturbed angular correlation (PAC) spectroscopy. It incorporates stochastic models and provides robust options for customization of fits. Notable features of the program include platform independence and support for (1) fits to stochastic models of hyperfine interactions, (2) user-defined constraints among model parameters, (3) fits to multiple spectra simultaneously, and (4) any spin nuclear probe.

  9. Allometry of individual reproduction and defense in eusocial colonies: A comparative approach to trade-offs in social sponge-dwelling Synalpheus shrimps.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah L Bornbusch

    Full Text Available Eusociality, one of the most complex forms of social organization, is thought to have evolved in several animal clades in response to competition for resources and reproductive opportunities. Several species of snapping shrimp in the genus Synalpheus, the only marine organisms known to exhibit eusociality, form colonies characterized by high reproductive skew, and aggressive territoriality coupled with cooperative defense. In eusocial Synalpheus colonies, individual reproduction is limited to female 'queens', whose fecundity dictates colony growth. Given that individual reproduction and defense are both energetically costly, individual and colony fitness likely depend on the optimal allocation of resources by these reproducing individuals towards these potentially competing demands. Synalpheus species, however, display varying degrees of eusociality, suggesting that reproducing females have adopted different strategies for allocation among reproduction and defense. Here, we use structural equation modeling to characterize the relationships between the allometry of queen reproductive capacity and defensive weaponry, and colony size in six eusocial Synalpheus species, estimating trade-offs between reproduction and defense. We document strong trade-offs between mass of the fighting claw (defense and egg number (reproduction in queens from weakly eusocial species, while the trade-off is reduced or absent in those from strongly eusocial species. These results suggest that in less cooperative species, intra-colony conflict selects for queen retention of weapons that have significant costs to fecundity, while reproducing females from highly eusocial species, i.e., those with a single queen, have been able to reduce the cost of weapons as a result of protection by other colony members.

  10. Environmental chemicals and their effects on female reproductive health: Searching for molecular mechanisms and effect biomarkers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Johansson, Hanna Katarina Lilith

    Incorrect developmental programming of the female reproductive tract can lead to compromised reproductive fitness later in life. It has been suggested that exposure to endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) in utero can disrupt ovarian programming in humans, which is supported by several animal st...

  11. Analyses between Reproductive Behaviour, Genetic Diversity and Pythium Responsiveness in Zingiber spp. reveal an adaptive significance for hemiclonality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Geethu Elizabath Thomas

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available AbstractMode of reproduction is generally considered to have long-range evolutionary implications on population survival. Because sexual reproduction produces genetically diverse genotypes, this mode of reproduction is predicted to positively influence the success potential of offspring in evolutionary arms race with parasites (Red queen whereas, without segregation and recombination, the obligate asexual multiplication may push a species into extinction due to the steady accumulation of deleterious mutations (Muller’s ratchet. However, the extent of linearity between reproductive strategies, genetic diversity and population fitness, and the contributions of different breeding strategies to population fitness are yet to be understood clearly. Genus Zingiber belonging to the pan-tropic family Zingiberaceae represents a good system to study contributions of different breeding behaviour on genetic diversity and population fitness, as this genus comprises species with contrasting breeding systems. In this study, we analyzed breeding behaviour, amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP diversity and response to the soft-rot pathogen Pythium aphanidermatum in 18 natural populations of three wild Zingiber spp.: Z. neesanum, Z. nimmonii and Z. zerumbet, together with the obligately asexual cultivated congener, ginger (Z. officinale. Ginger showed an exceptionally narrow genetic base, and adding to this, all the tested cultivars were uniformly susceptible to soft-rot. Concordant with the postulates of Muller’s ratchet, the background selection may be continuously pushing ginger into the ancestral state, rendering it inefficient in host-pathogen coevolution. Z. neesanum and Z. nimmonii populations were sexual and genetically diverse; however, contrary to Red Queen expectations, the populations were highly susceptible to soft-rot. Z. zerumbet showed a hemiclonal breeding behaviour. The populations inhabiting forest understory were large and

  12. Pregnancy and Reproductive Issues

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Health Pregnancy Share this page Facebook Twitter Email Pregnancy and Reproductive Issues Tahirah Diagnosed in 2003 Pregnancy ... in control groups without the disease. Effects of pregnancy on MS Before 1950, most women with MS ...

  13. Environment, epigenetics and reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skinner, Michael K

    2017-07-01

    A conference summary of the third biannual Kenya Africa Conference "Environment, Epigenetics and Reproduction" is provided. A partial special Environmental Epigenetics issue containing a number of papers in Volume 3, Issue 3 and 4 are discussed.

  14. Reproductive and developmental toxicology

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Gupta, Ramesh C

    2011-01-01

    .... With a special focus on placental toxicity, this book is the only available reference to connect the three key risk stages, and is the only resource to include reproductive and developmental toxicity in domestic animals, fish, and wildlife.

  15. Reproductive data for groundfish

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The ROCKFISH database houses data from rockfish species collected by the SWFSC FED along the California coast as part of a reproductive study originating in the...

  16. Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART)

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... to the surrogate and to the male partner. Surrogacy can be used when the female of the ... party reproduction (sperm, egg, and embryo donation and surrogacy): A guide for patients . Retrieved May 31, 2016, ...

  17. Extensive fitness and human cooperation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Hateren, J. H.

    2015-01-01

    Evolution depends on the fitness of organisms, the expected rate of reproducing. Directly getting offspring is the most basic form of fitness, but fitness can also be increased indirectly by helping genetically related individuals (such as kin) to increase their fitness. The combined effect is known

  18. Reproductive Liberty and Overpopulation

    OpenAIRE

    Carol A. Kates

    2004-01-01

    Despite substantial evidence pointing to a looming Malthusian catastrophe, governmental measures to reduce population have been opposed both by religious conservatives and by many liberals, especially liberal feminists. Liberal critics have claimed that 'utilitarian' population policies violate a 'fundamental right of reproductive liberty'. This essay argues that reproductive liberty should not be considered a fundamental human right, or certainly not an indefeasible right. It should, instead...

  19. Thyroid and male reproduction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anand Kumar

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Male reproduction is governed by the classical hypothalamo-hypophyseal testicular axis: Hypothalamic gonadotropin releasing hormone (GnRH, pituitary luteinizing hormone (LH and follicle stimulating hormone (FSH and the gonadal steroid, principally, testosterone. Thyroid hormones have been shown to exert a modulatory influence on this axis and consequently the sexual and spermatogenic function of man. This review will examine the modulatory influence of thyroid hormones on male reproduction.

  20. Avian reproductive physiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gee, G.F.; Gibbons, Edward F.; Durrant, Barbara S.; Demarest, Jack

    1995-01-01

    Knowledge of the many physiological factors associated with egg production , fertility, incubation, and brooding in nondomestic birds is limited. Science knows even less about reproduction in most of the 238 endangered or threatened birds. This discussion uses studies of nondomestic and, when necessary, domestic birds to describe physiological control of reproduction. Studies of the few nondomestic avian species show large variation in physiological control of reproduction. Aviculturists, in order to successfully propagate an endangered bird, must understand the bird's reproductive peculiarities. First, investigators can do studies with carefully chosen surrogate species, but eventually they need to confirm the results in the target endangered bird. Studies of reproduction in nondomestic birds increased in the last decade. Still, scientists need to do more comparative studies to understand the mechanisms that control reproduction in birds. New technologies are making it possible to study reproductive physiology of nondomestic species in less limiting ways. These technologies include telemetry to collect information without inducing stress on captives (Howey et al., 1987; Klugman, 1987), new tests for most of the humoral factors associated with reproduction, and the skill to collect small samples and manipulate birds without disrupting the physiological mechanisms (Bercovitz et al., 1985). Managers are using knowledge from these studies to improve propagation in zoological parks, private and public propagation facilities, and research institutions. Researchers need to study the control of ovulation, egg formation, and oviposition in the species of nondomestic birds that lay very few eggs in a season, hold eggs in the oviduct for longer intervals, or differ in other ways from the more thoroughly studied domestic birds. Other techniques that would enhance propagation for nondomestlc birds include tissue culture of cloned embryonic cells, cryopreservation of embryos

  1. Reproductive rights approach to reproductive health in developing countries

    OpenAIRE

    Pillai, Vijayan Kumara; Gupta, Rashmi

    2011-01-01

    Background: Research on reproductive health in developing countries focuses mostly on the role of economic development on various components of reproductive health. Cross-sectional and empirical research studies in particular on the effects of non-economic factors such as reproductive rights remain few and far between. Objective: This study investigates the influence of two components of an empowerment strategy, gender equality, and reproductive rights on women’s reproductive health in develo...

  2. Fit-for-Purpose

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Enemark, Stig

    2013-01-01

    ; completeness to cover the total jurisdiction; and credibility in terms of reliable data being trusted by the users. Accuracy can then be incrementally improved over time when relevant and justified by serving the needs of citizen, business and society in general. Such a fit-for-purpose approach is fundamental...... systems act within adopted land policies that define the legal regulatory pattern for dealing with land issues. Land administration systems - whether highly advanced or very basic – require a spatial framework to operate. This framework provides the fundamental information for dealing with land issues...... concepts may well be seen as the end target but not as the point of entry. When assessing the technology and investment choices the focus should be on building a fit-for-purpose framework that will meet the needs of society today and that can be incrementally improved over time....

  3. Convolution based profile fitting

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kern, A.; Coelho, A.A.; Cheary, R.W.

    2002-01-01

    Full text: In convolution based profile fitting, profiles are generated by convoluting functions together to form the observed profile shape. For a convolution of 'n' functions this process can be written as, Y(2θ)=F 1 (2θ)x F 2 (2θ)x... x F i (2θ)x....xF n (2θ). In powder diffractometry the functions F i (2θ) can be interpreted as the aberration functions of the diffractometer, but in general any combination of appropriate functions for F i (2θ) may be used in this context. Most direct convolution fitting methods are restricted to combinations of F i (2θ) that can be convoluted analytically (e.g. GSAS) such as Lorentzians, Gaussians, the hat (impulse) function and the exponential function. However, software such as TOPAS is now available that can accurately convolute and refine a wide variety of profile shapes numerically, including user defined profiles, without the need to convolute analytically. Some of the most important advantages of modern convolution based profile fitting are: 1) virtually any peak shape and angle dependence can normally be described using minimal profile parameters in laboratory and synchrotron X-ray data as well as in CW and TOF neutron data. This is possible because numerical convolution and numerical differentiation is used within the refinement procedure so that a wide range of functions can easily be incorporated into the convolution equation; 2) it can use physically based diffractometer models by convoluting the instrument aberration functions. This can be done for most laboratory based X-ray powder diffractometer configurations including conventional divergent beam instruments, parallel beam instruments, and diffractometers used for asymmetric diffraction. It can also accommodate various optical elements (e.g. multilayers and monochromators) and detector systems (e.g. point and position sensitive detectors) and has already been applied to neutron powder diffraction systems (e.g. ANSTO) as well as synchrotron based

  4. MixFit

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Haller, Toomas; Leitsalu, Liis; Fischer, Krista

    2017-01-01

    Ancestry information at the individual level can be a valuable resource for personalized medicine, medical, demographical and history research, as well as for tracing back personal history. We report a new method for quantitatively determining personal genetic ancestry based on genome-wide data....... Numerical ancestry component scores are assigned to individuals based on comparisons with reference populations. These comparisons are conducted with an existing analytical pipeline making use of genotype phasing, similarity matrix computation and our addition-multidimensional best fitting by Mix......Fit. The method is demonstrated by studying Estonian and Finnish populations in geographical context. We show the main differences in the genetic composition of these otherwise close European populations and how they have influenced each other. The components of our analytical pipeline are freely available...

  5. Effects of foliar herbivory by insects on the fitness of Raphanus raphanistrum: damage can increase male fitness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strauss, S Y; Conner, J K; Lehtilä, K P

    2001-11-01

    Generally, effects of herbivory on plant fitness have been measured in terms of female reproductive success (seed production). However, male plant fitness, defined as the number of seeds sired by pollen, contributes half of the genes to the next generation and is therefore crucial to the evolution of natural plant populations. This is the first study to examine effects of insect herbivory on both male and female plant reproductive success. Through controlled field and greenhouse experiments and genetic paternity analysis, we found that foliar damage by insects caused a range of responses by plants. In one environment, damaged plants had greater success as male parents than undamaged plants. Neither effects on pollen competitive ability nor pollinator visitation patterns could explain the greater siring success of these damaged plants. Success of damaged plants as male parents appeared to be due primarily to changes in allocation to flowers versus seeds after damage. Damaged plants produced more flowers early in the season, but not more seeds, than undamaged plants. Based on total seed production, male fitness measures from the first third of the season, and flower production, we estimated that damaged and undamaged plants had equal total reproductive success at the end of the season in this environment. In a second, richer environment, damaged and undamaged plants had equal male and female plant fitness, and no traits differed significantly between the treatments. Equal total reproductive success may not be ecologically or evolutionarily equivalent if it is achieved differentially through male versus female fitness. Genes from damaged plants dispersed through pollen may escape attack from herbivores, if such attack is correlated spatially from year to year.

  6. Intensity Conserving Spectral Fitting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klimchuk, J. A.; Patsourakos, S.; Tripathi, D.

    2015-01-01

    The detailed shapes of spectral line profiles provide valuable information about the emitting plasma, especially when the plasma contains an unresolved mixture of velocities, temperatures, and densities. As a result of finite spectral resolution, the intensity measured by a spectrometer is the average intensity across a wavelength bin of non-zero size. It is assigned to the wavelength position at the center of the bin. However, the actual intensity at that discrete position will be different if the profile is curved, as it invariably is. Standard fitting routines (spline, Gaussian, etc.) do not account for this difference, and this can result in significant errors when making sensitive measurements. Detection of asymmetries in solar coronal emission lines is one example. Removal of line blends is another. We have developed an iterative procedure that corrects for this effect. It can be used with any fitting function, but we employ a cubic spline in a new analysis routine called Intensity Conserving Spline Interpolation (ICSI). As the name implies, it conserves the observed intensity within each wavelength bin, which ordinary fits do not. Given the rapid convergence, speed of computation, and ease of use, we suggest that ICSI be made a standard component of the processing pipeline for spectroscopic data.

  7. Passerine birds breeding under chronic noise experience reduced fitness.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julia Schroeder

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Fitness in birds has been shown to be negatively associated with anthropogenic noise, but the underlying mechanisms remain obscure. It is however crucial to understand the mechanisms of how urban noise impinges on fitness to obtain a better understanding of the role of chronic noise in urban ecology. Here, we examine three hypotheses on how noise might reduce reproductive output in passerine birds: (H1 by impairing mate choice, (H2 by reducing territory quality and (H3 by impeding chick development. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We used long-term data from an island population of house sparrows, Passer domesticus, in which we can precisely estimate fitness. We found that nests in an area affected by the noise from large generators produced fewer young, of lower body mass, and fewer recruits, even when we corrected statistically for parental genetic quality using a cross-fostering set-up, supporting H3. Also, individual females provided their young with food less often when they bred in the noisy area compared to breeding attempts by the same females elsewhere. Furthermore, we show that females reacted flexibly to increased noise levels by adjusting their provisioning rate in the short term, which suggests that noise may be a causal factor that reduces reproductive output. We rejected H1 and H2 because nestbox occupancy, parental body mass, age and reproductive investment did not differ significantly between noisy and quiet areas. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: OUR RESULTS SUGGEST A PREVIOUSLY UNDESCRIBED MECHANISM TO EXPLAIN HOW ENVIRONMENTAL NOISE CAN REDUCE FITNESS IN PASSERINE BIRDS: by acoustically masking parent-offspring communication. More importantly, using a cross-fostering set-up, our results demonstrate that birds breeding in a noisy environment experience significant fitness costs. Chronic noise is omnipresent around human habitation and may produces similar fitness consequences in a wide range of urban bird species.

  8. The Soldier Fitness Tracker: global delivery of Comprehensive Soldier Fitness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fravell, Mike; Nasser, Katherine; Cornum, Rhonda

    2011-01-01

    Carefully implemented technology strategies are vital to the success of large-scale initiatives such as the U.S. Army's Comprehensive Soldier Fitness (CSF) program. Achieving the U.S. Army's vision for CSF required a robust information technology platform that was scaled to millions of users and that leveraged the Internet to enable global reach. The platform needed to be agile, provide powerful real-time reporting, and have the capacity to quickly transform to meet emerging requirements. Existing organizational applications, such as "Single Sign-On," and authoritative data sources were exploited to the maximum extent possible. Development of the "Soldier Fitness Tracker" is the most recent, and possibly the best, demonstration of the potential benefits possible when existing organizational capabilities are married to new, innovative applications. Combining the capabilities of the extant applications with the newly developed applications expedited development, eliminated redundant data collection, resulted in the exceeding of program objectives, and produced a comfortable experience for the end user, all in less than six months. This is a model for future technology integration. (c) 2010 APA, all rights reserved.

  9. Pregnancy-Induced Changes in Body Fat, Physical Fitness and Energy Requirement in Military and Civilian Women

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Butte, Nancy

    1999-01-01

    ...) during postpartum weight loss. Physical activity, weight, FFM and fat mass, fitness, strength, and iron status will be measured in women with low to high pre-pregnancy BMI through a complete reproductive cycle...

  10. Pregnancy-Induced Changes in Body Fat, Physical Fitness and Energy Requirements in Military and Civilian Women

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Butte, Nancy

    1998-01-01

    ...) during postpartum weight loss. Physical activity, weight, FFM and fat mass, fitness, strength, and iron status will be measured in women with low to high pre-pregnancy BMI through a complete reproductive cycle...

  11. Conspecific reproductive success and breeding habitat selection: Implications for the study of coloniality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danchin, E.; Boulinier, T.; Massot, M.

    1998-01-01

    Habitat selection is a crucial process in the life cycle of animals because it can affect most components of fitness. It has been proposed that some animals cue on the reproductive success of conspecifics to select breeding habitats. We tested this hypothesis with demographic and behavioral data from a 17-yr study of the Black-legged Kittiwake (Rissa tridactyla), a cliff-nesting seabird. As the hypothesis assumes, the Black-legged Kittiwake nesting environment was patchy, and the relative quality of the different patches (i.e., breeding cliffs) varied in time. The average reproductive success of the breeders of a given cliff was predictable from one year to the next, but this predictability faded after several years. The dynamic nature of cliff quality in the long term is partly explained by the autocorrelation of the prevalence of an ectoparasite that influences reproductive success. As predicted by the performance-based conspecific attraction hypothesis, the reproductive success of current breeders on a given cliff was predictive of the reproductive success of new recruits on the cliff in the following year. Breeders tended to recruit to the previous year's most productive cliffs and to emigrate from the least productive ones. Consequently, the dynamics of breeder numbers on the cliffs were explained by local reproductive success on a year-to-year basis. Because, on average, young Black-legged Kittiwakes first breed when 4 yr old, such a relationship probably results from individual choices based on the assessment of previous-year local quality. When breeders changed breeding cliffs between years, they selected cliffs of per capita higher reproductive success. Furthermore, after accounting for the potential effects of age and sex as well as between-year variations, the effect of individual breeding performance on breeding dispersal was strongly influenced by the average reproductive success of other breeders on the same cliff. Individual breeding performance did

  12. The reproductive biology of intertidal klipfish (Perciformes: Clinidae ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Up to nine broods of eggs and embryos of different ages were found in the gonads at one time, although there was no relationship between the number of broods and fish size. The total number of reproductive elements (eggs and embryos), however, increased with fish mass in all species. Reproductive potential, calculated ...

  13. Living in isolation - population structure, reproduction, and genetic variation of the endangered plant species Dianthus gratianopolitanus (Cheddar pink).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Putz, Christina M; Schmid, Christoph; Reisch, Christoph

    2015-09-01

    The endangered plant species Dianthus gratianopolitanus exhibits a highly fragmented distribution range comprising many isolated populations. Based upon this pattern of distribution, we selected a study region in Switzerland with a lower magnitude of isolation (Swiss Jura) and another study region in Germany with a higher degree of isolation (Franconian Jura). In each region, we chose ten populations to analyze population structure, reproduction, and genetic variation in a comparative approach. Therefore, we determined population density, cushion size, and cushion density to analyze population structure, investigated reproductive traits, including number of flowers, capsules, and germination rate, and analyzed amplified fragment length polymorphisms to study genetic variation. Population and cushion density were credibly higher in German than in Swiss populations, whereas reproductive traits and genetic variation within populations were similar in both study regions. However, genetic variation among populations and isolation by distance were stronger in Germany than in Switzerland. Generally, cushion size and density as well as flower and capsule production increased with population size and density, whereas genetic variation decreased with population density. In contrast to our assumptions, we observed denser populations and cushions in the region with the higher magnitude of isolation, whereas reproductive traits and genetic variation within populations were comparable in both regions. This corroborates the assumption that stronger isolation must not necessarily result in the loss of fitness and genetic variation. Furthermore, it supports our conclusion that the protection of strongly isolated populations contributes essentially to the conservation of a species' full evolutionary potential.

  14. Interaction of environment and reproductive processes in cattle

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Thatcher, W.W.; Collier, R.J.; Beede, D.K.; Wilcox, C.J.

    1986-01-01

    Effects of environment on reproductive processes of female cattle are described. Variation in fertility responses is divided into environmental and genetic effects. Environmental effects are defined as all effects non-genetic, and emphasis is placed on the quantitation of various climatic measurements (e.g. maximum environmental temperature) associated with reproductive performance. Sensitivities of various reproductive events to thermal stress are defined and include such responses as: reproductive behaviour; hormonal balance related to both reproductive events and metabolic adaptations; alterations in uterine blood flow; embryonic death; conceptus development; placental function; and restoration of postpartum reproductive function. Also discussed are several management strategies to improve animal productivity, including environmental modification and the potential for genetic development of less heat-sensitive animals. (author)

  15. Evolutionary fitness as a function of pubertal age in 22 subsistence-based traditional societies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gawlik Aneta

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Context The age of puberty has fallen over the past 130 years in industrialized, western countries, and this fall is widely referred to as the secular trend for earlier puberty. The current study was undertaken to test two evolutionary theories: (a the reproductive system maximizes the number of offspring in response to positive environmental cues in terms of energy balance, and (b early puberty is a trade-off response for high mortality rate and reduced resource availability. Methods Using a sample of 22 natural-fertility societies of mostly tropical foragers, horticulturalists, and pastoralists from Africa, South America, Australia, and Southeastern Asia, this study compares indices of adolescence growth and menarche with those of fertility fitness in these non-industrial, traditional societies. Results The average age at menarche correlated with the first reproduction, but did not correlate with the total fertility rate TFR or reproductive fitness. The age at menarche correlated negatively with their average adult body mass, and the average adult body weight positively correlated with reproductive fitness. Survivorship did not correlate with the age at menarche or age indices of the adolescent growth spurt. The population density correlated positively with the age at first reproduction, but not with menarche age, TFR, or reproductive fitness. Conclusions Based on our analyses, we reject the working hypotheses that reproductive fitness is enhanced in societies with early puberty or that early menarche is an adaptive response to greater mortality risk. Whereas body mass is a measure of resources is tightly associated with fitness, the age of menarche is not.

  16. Reproductive bribing and policing as evolutionary mechanisms for the suppression of within-group selfishness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reeve, H K; Keller, L

    1997-07-01

    We show that a new, simple, and robust general mechanism for the social suppression of within-group selfishness follows from Hamilton's rule applied in a multilevel selection approach to asymmetrical, two-person groups: If it pays a group member to behave selfishly (i.e., increase its share of the group's reproduction, at the expense of group productivity), then its partner will virtually always be favored to provide a reproductive "bribe" sufficient to remove the incentive for the selfish behavior. The magnitude of the bribe will vary directly with the number of offspring (or other close kin) potentially gained by the selfish individual and inversely with both the relatedness r between the interactants and the loss in group productivity because of selfishness. This bribe principle greatly extends the scope for cooperation within groups. Reproductive bribing is more likely to be favored over social policing for dominants rather than subordinates and as intragroup relatedness increases. Finally, analysis of the difference between the group optimum for an individual's behavior and the individual's inclusive fitness optimum reveals a paradoxical feedback loop by which bribing and policing, while nullifying particular selfish acts, automatically widen the separation of individual and group optima for other behaviors (i.e., resolution of one conflict intensifies others).

  17. The effect of female quality on male ejaculatory expenditure and reproductive success in a praying mantid.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anuradhi Jayaweera

    Full Text Available Strategic ejaculation is a behavioural strategy shown by many animals as a response to sperm competition and/or as a potential mechanism of cryptic male choice. Males invest more mating resources when the risk of sperm competition increases or they invest more in high quality females to maximize their reproductive output. We tested this hypothesis in the false garden mantid Pseudomantis albofimbriata, where females are capable of multiply mating and body condition is an indicator of potential reproductive fitness. We predicted male mantids would ejaculate strategically by allocating more sperm to high quality females. To determine if and how males alter their ejaculate in response to mate quality, we manipulated female food quantity so that females were either in good condition with many eggs (i.e. high quality or poor condition with few eggs (i.e. low quality. Half of the females from each treatment were used in mating trials in which transferred sperm was counted before fertilisation occurred and the other half of females were used in mating trials where fertilisation occurred and ootheca mass and total eggs in the ootheca were recorded. Opposed to our predictions, the total number of sperm and the proportion of viable sperm transferred did not vary significantly between female treatments. Male reproductive success was entirely dependent on female quality/fecundity, rather than on the number of sperm transferred. These results suggest that female quality is not a major factor influencing postcopulatory male mating strategies in P. albofimbriata, and that sperm number has little effect on male reproductive success in a single mating scenario.

  18. Altruism and Reproductive Limitations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carey J. Fitzgerald

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available We examined how different types of reproductive limitations — functional (schizoid personality disorder and schizophrenia, physical (malnutrition, and sexual (bisexuality and homosexuality — influenced altruistic intentions toward hypothetical target individuals of differing degrees of relatedness (r = 0, .25, and .50. Participants were 312 undergraduate students who completed a questionnaire on altruism toward hypothetical friends, half-siblings, and siblings with these different types of reproductive limitations. Genetic relatedness and reproductive limitations did not influence altruistic decision-making when the cost of altruism was low but did as the cost of altruism increased, with participants being more likely to help a sibling over a half-sibling and a half-sibling over a friend. Participants also indicated they were more likely to help a healthy (control person over people with a reproductive limitation. Of the three types of reproductive limitations, functional limitations had the strongest effect on altruistic decision-making, indicating that people were less likely to help those who exhibit abnormal social behavior.

  19. Circadian rhythms and reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boden, Michael J; Kennaway, David J

    2006-09-01

    There is a growing recognition that the circadian timing system, in particular recently discovered clock genes, plays a major role in a wide range of physiological systems. Microarray studies, for example, have shown that the expression of hundreds of genes changes many fold in the suprachiasmatic nucleus, liver heart and kidney. In this review, we discuss the role of circadian rhythmicity in the control of reproductive function in animals and humans. Circadian rhythms and clock genes appear to be involved in optimal reproductive performance, but there are sufficient redundancies in their function that many of the knockout mice produced do not show overt reproductive failure. Furthermore, important strain differences have emerged from the studies especially between the various Clock (Circadian Locomotor Output Cycle Kaput) mutant strains. Nevertheless, there is emerging evidence that the primary clock genes, Clock and Bmal1 (Brain and Muscle ARNT-like protein 1, also known as Mop3), strongly influence reproductive competency. The extent to which the circadian timing system affects human reproductive performance is not known, in part, because many of the appropriate studies have not been done. With the role of Clock and Bmal1 in fertility becoming clearer, it may be time to pursue the effect of polymorphisms in these genes in relation to the various types of infertility in humans.

  20. The Effect of Latitudinal Variation on Shrimp Reproductive Strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van de Kerk, Madelon; Jones Littles, Chanda; Saucedo, Omar; Lorenzen, Kai

    2016-01-01

    Reproductive strategies comprise the timing and frequency of reproductive events and the number of offspring per reproductive event, depending on factors such as climate conditions. Therefore, species that exhibit plasticity in the allocation of reproductive effort can alter their behavior in response to climate change. Studying how the reproductive strategy of species varies along the latitudinal gradient can help us understand and predict how they will respond to climate change. We investigated the effects of the temporal allocation of reproductive effort on the population size of brown shrimp (Farfantepenaeus aztecus) along a latitudinal gradient. Multiple shrimp species exhibit variation in their reproductive strategies, and given the economic importance of brown shrimp to the commercial fishing sector of the Unites States, changes in the timing of their reproduction could have significant economic and social consequences. We used a stage-based, density-dependent matrix population model tailored to the life history of brown shrimp. Shrimp growth rates and environmental carrying capacity were varied based on the seasonal climate conditions at different latitudes, and we estimated the population size at equilibrium. The length of the growing season increased with decreasing latitude and the reproductive strategy leading to the highest population size changed from one annual birth pulse with high reproductive output to continuous low-output reproduction. Hence, our model confirms the classical paradigm of continuous reproduction at low latitudes, with increased seasonality of the breeding period towards the poles. Our results also demonstrate the potential for variation in climate to affect the optimal reproductive strategy for achieving maximum population sizes. Certainly, understanding these dynamics may inform more comprehensive management strategies for commercially important species like brown shrimp.

  1. The Effect of Latitudinal Variation on Shrimp Reproductive Strategies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Madelon van de Kerk

    Full Text Available Reproductive strategies comprise the timing and frequency of reproductive events and the number of offspring per reproductive event, depending on factors such as climate conditions. Therefore, species that exhibit plasticity in the allocation of reproductive effort can alter their behavior in response to climate change. Studying how the reproductive strategy of species varies along the latitudinal gradient can help us understand and predict how they will respond to climate change. We investigated the effects of the temporal allocation of reproductive effort on the population size of brown shrimp (Farfantepenaeus aztecus along a latitudinal gradient. Multiple shrimp species exhibit variation in their reproductive strategies, and given the economic importance of brown shrimp to the commercial fishing sector of the Unites States, changes in the timing of their reproduction could have significant economic and social consequences. We used a stage-based, density-dependent matrix population model tailored to the life history of brown shrimp. Shrimp growth rates and environmental carrying capacity were varied based on the seasonal climate conditions at different latitudes, and we estimated the population size at equilibrium. The length of the growing season increased with decreasing latitude and the reproductive strategy leading to the highest population size changed from one annual birth pulse with high reproductive output to continuous low-output reproduction. Hence, our model confirms the classical paradigm of continuous reproduction at low latitudes, with increased seasonality of the breeding period towards the poles. Our results also demonstrate the potential for variation in climate to affect the optimal reproductive strategy for achieving maximum population sizes. Certainly, understanding these dynamics may inform more comprehensive management strategies for commercially important species like brown shrimp.

  2. Gene therapy and reproductive medicine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stribley, John M; Rehman, Khurram S; Niu, Hairong; Christman, Gregory M

    2002-04-01

    To review the literature on the principles of gene therapy and its potential application in reproductive medicine. Literature review. Gene therapy involves transfer of genetic material to target cells using a delivery system, or vector. Attention has primarily focused on viral vectors. Significant problems remain to be overcome including low efficacy of gene transfer, the transient expression of some vectors, safety issues with modified adenoviruses and retroviruses, and ethical concerns. If these issues can be resolved, gene therapy will be applicable to an increasing spectrum of single and multiple gene disorders, as the Human Genome Project data are analyzed, and the genetic component of human disease becomes better understood. Gynecologic gene therapy has advanced to human clinical trials for ovarian carcinoma, and shows potential for the treatment of uterine leiomyomata. Obstetric applications of gene therapy, including fetal gene therapy, remain more distant goals. Concerns about the safety of human gene therapy research are being actively addressed, and remarkable progress in improving DNA transfer has been made. The first treatment success for a genetic disease (severe combined immunodeficiency disease) has been achieved, and ongoing research efforts will eventually yield clinical applications in many spheres of reproductive medicine.

  3. Review Article Conscientious Objection and Reproductive Health ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    However conscientious objection amongst the available few is a hitherto undocumented potential factor influencing access to health care in SSA. Provision of certain reproductive health services goes counter to some individual's religious and moral beliefs and practices. Health providers sometimes refuse to participate in or ...

  4. Introduction: Communicating Reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hopwood, Nick; Jones, Peter Murray; Kassell, Lauren; Secord, Jim

    2015-01-01

    Communication should be central to histories of reproduction, because it has structured how people do and do not reproduce. Yet communication has been so pervasive, and so various, that it is often taken for granted and the historical specificities overlooked. Making communication a frame for histories of reproduction can draw a fragmented field together, including by putting the promotion of esoteric ideas on a par with other practical activities. Paying communication close attention can revitalize the history of reproduction over the long term by highlighting continuities as well as the complex connections between new technologies and new approaches. Themes such as the power of storytelling, the claiming and challenging of expertise, and relations between knowledge and ignorance, secrecy and propriety also invite further study.

  5. Dinosaur Reproduction and Parenting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horner, John R.

    Non-avian dinosaur reproductive and parenting behaviors were mostly similar to those of extant archosaurs. Non-avian dinosaurs were probably sexually dimorphic and some may have engaged in hierarchical rituals. Non-avian coelurosaurs (e.g. Troodontidae, Oviraptorosauria) had two active oviducts, each of which produced single eggs on a daily or greater time scale. The eggs of non-coelurosaurian dinosaurs (e.g. Ornithischia, Sauropoda) were incubated in soils, whereas the eggs of non-avian coelurosaurs (e.g. Troodon, Oviraptor) were incubated with a combination of soil and direct parental contact. Parental attention to the young was variable, ranging from protection from predators to possible parental feeding of nest-bound hatchlings. Semi-altricial hadrosaur hatchlings exited their respective nests near the time of their first linear doubling. Some reproductive behaviors, once thought exclusive to Aves, arose first in non-avian dinosaurs. The success of the Dinosauria may be related to reproductive strategies.

  6. Reproductive prognosis in endometriosis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hjordt Hansen, Maj V; Dalsgaard, Torur; Hartwell, Dorthe

    2014-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To assess the reproductive long-term prognosis of women with and without endometriosis, to explore changes over time, and to quantify the contribution of artificial reproductive techniques. DESIGN: Cohort study. SETTING: Denmark 1977-2009. SAMPLE: Data retrieved from four national...... registries. Among 15-49-year-old women during the period 1977-82, 24 667 were diagnosed with endometriosis and 98 668 (1:4) women without endometriosis were age-matched. METHODS: To assess long-term reproductive prognosis, all pregnancy outcomes were identified among the women with and without endometriosis...... until the end of 2009. To explore changes over time, the endometriosis cohorts were followed for 15 years from the years 1980, 1986, 1992 and 1998, with the corresponding control cohorts. All pregnancy outcomes were categorized into naturally or artificially conceived pregnancies. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES...

  7. Changing reproductive effort within a semelparous reproductive episode.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, P William; Simons, Andrew M

    2014-08-01

    • Life-history theory predicts a trade-off between current and future reproduction for iteroparous organisms-as individuals age, the expected value of future reproduction declines, and thus reproductive effort is expected to be higher in later clutches than in earlier. In contrast, models explaining the evolution of semelparity treat semelparous reproduction as instantaneous, with no scope for intraindividual variation. However, semelparous reproduction is also extended, but over shorter time scales; whether there are similar age- or stage-specific changes in reproductive effort within a semelparous episode is unclear. In this study, we assessed whether semelparous individuals increase reproductive effort as residual reproductive value declines by comparing the reproductive phenotype of flowers at five different floral positions along a main inflorescence.• Using the herbaceous monocarp Lobelia inflata, we conducted a longitudinal study of 409 individuals including both laboratory and field populations over three seasons. We recorded six reproductive traits-including the length of three phenological intervals as well as fruit size, seed size, and seed number-for all plants across floral positions produced throughout the reproductive episode.• We found that while the rate of flower initiation did not change, flowers at distal (late) floral positions developed more quickly and contained larger seed than flowers at basal (early) floral positions did.• Our results were consistent with the hypothesis that, like iteroparous organisms, L. inflata increases reproductive effort in response to low residual reproductive value. © 2014 Botanical Society of America, Inc.

  8. LA CONDICIÓN CORPORAL COMO HERRAMIENTA PARA PRONOSTICAR EL POTENCIAL REPRODUCTIVO EN HEMBRAS BOVINAS DE CARNE BODY CONDITION SCORE AS TOOL TO PREDICT THE REPRODUCTIVE POTENTIAL OF BEEF COWS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adriana Correa-Orozco

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available El objetivo de esta revisión es describir el efecto de la condición corporal (CC sobre el desempeño reproductivo y la función endocrina en vacas de carne. Los intervalos parto al primer estro y ovulación, intervalos desde el parto a la actividad luteal normal y a la concepción son más cortos en vacas con CC moderada cuando son comparados con vacas delgadas. El tamaño del folículo dominante al primer estro es más grande y la tasa de preñez es mayor para vacas con condición moderada en comparación con vacas delgadas. Además, han sido estudiados los efectos de la CC sobre la secreción de hormona luteinizante, estradiol, leptina, insulina y factor de crecimiento semejante a la insulina I (IGF-I. El programa para inducción de la ovulación puede aumentar la tasa de preñez en vacas de carne con CC pobre. Sin embargo, la eficacia del protocolo para inducir el estro y la ovulación es dependiente de la CC. En conclusión, la CC es un indicador útil del estado de energía y potencial reproductivo, por sus efectos sobre la dinámica folicular, actividad ovárica, función endocrina y tasa de preñez en vacas de carne.The objective of this review is to describe the effect of body condition score (BCS on reproductive performance and endocrine function of beef cows. Interval to first estrus and ovulation, interval from parturition to normal luteal activity and to conception are shorter for moderate body condition cows than thin cows. Size of the dominant follicle at the first estrus is larger and pregnancy rate is greater for moderate condition cows as compared with thin cows. In addition has been studied to effects of BCS on secretion of luteinizing hormone, estradiol, leptin, insulin and insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I. The program for induction of ovulation can increase the pregnancy rate in beef cows in poor body condition. However, the effectiveness of the protocol for inducing estrus and ovulation is dependent on body condition

  9. Reproductive Technology and Surrogacy

    OpenAIRE

    Ásgeirsson, Hrafn; Nordal, Salvör

    2015-01-01

    During the past few years, reproductive technology and surrogacy have emerged in a number of European countries as issues of debate. There has been a steady increase in the use of reproductive technology in the Nordic countries, as well as an increase in the use of cross-border medical treatment in order to achieve pregnancy. At the same time, a number of ethical issues have been raised concerning the rights of the participants, including the children. In the fall of 2013, the Nordic Committe...

  10. Functional Amyloids in Reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hewetson, Aveline; Do, Hoa Quynh; Myers, Caitlyn; Muthusubramanian, Archana; Sutton, Roger Bryan; Wylie, Benjamin J; Cornwall, Gail A

    2017-06-29

    Amyloids are traditionally considered pathological protein aggregates that play causative roles in neurodegenerative disease, diabetes and prionopathies. However, increasing evidence indicates that in many biological systems nonpathological amyloids are formed for functional purposes. In this review, we will specifically describe amyloids that carry out biological roles in sexual reproduction including the processes of gametogenesis, germline specification, sperm maturation and fertilization. Several of these functional amyloids are evolutionarily conserved across several taxa, including human, emphasizing the critical role amyloids perform in reproduction. Evidence will also be presented suggesting that, if altered, some functional amyloids may become pathological.

  11. Dance your way to fitness

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... ency/patientinstructions/000809.htm Dance your way to fitness To use the sharing features on this page, ... to rhythm and music. Many health clubs and fitness centers offer dance workout classes, such as Zumba. ...

  12. Life-history tradeoffs and reproductive cycles in Spotted Owls

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoelting, Ricka E.; Gutierrez, R.J.; Kendall, William L.; Peery, M. Zachariah

    2015-01-01

    The study of tradeoffs among life-history traits has long been key to understanding the evolution of life-history strategies. However, more recently, evolutionary ecologists have realized that reproductive costs have the potential to influence population dynamics. Here, we tested for costs of reproduction in the California Spotted Owl (Strix occidentalis occidentalis), and assessed whether costs of reproduction in year t − 1 on reproduction in year t could be responsible for regionally synchronized biennial cycles in reproductive output. Logistic regression analysis and multistate mark–recapture models with state uncertainty revealed that breeding reduced the likelihood of reproducing in the subsequent year by 16% to 38%, but had no influence on subsequent survival. We also found that costs of reproduction in year t − 1 were correlated with climatic conditions in year t, with evidence of higher costs during the dry phase of the El Niño–Southern Oscillation. Using a simulation-based population model, we showed that strong reproductive costs had the potential to create biennial cycles in population-level reproductive output; however, estimated costs of reproduction appeared to be too small to explain patterns observed in Spotted Owls. In the absence of strong reproductive costs, we hypothesize that observed natural cycles in the reproductive output of Spotted Owls are related to as-yet-unmeasured, regionally concordant fluctuations in environmental conditions or prey resources. Despite theoretical evidence for demographic effects, our analyses illustrate that linking tradeoffs to actual changes in population processes will be challenging because of the potential confounding effects of individual and environmental variation.

  13. Reproductive biology and its impact on body size: comparative analysis of mammalian, avian and dinosaurian reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Werner, Jan; Griebeler, Eva Maria

    2011-01-01

    Janis and Carrano (1992) suggested that large dinosaurs might have faced a lower risk of extinction under ecological changes than similar-sized mammals because large dinosaurs had a higher potential reproductive output than similar-sized mammals (JC hypothesis). First, we tested the assumption underlying the JC hypothesis. We therefore analysed the potential reproductive output (reflected in clutch/litter size and annual offspring number) of extant terrestrial mammals and birds (as "dinosaur analogs") and of extinct dinosaurs. With the exception of rodents, the differences in the reproductive output of similar-sized birds and mammals proposed by Janis and Carrano (1992) existed even at the level of single orders. Fossil dinosaur clutches were larger than litters of similar-sized mammals, and dinosaur clutch sizes were comparable to those of similar-sized birds. Because the extinction risk of extant species often correlates with a low reproductive output, the latter difference suggests a lower risk of population extinction in dinosaurs than in mammals. Second, we present a very simple, mathematical model that demonstrates the advantage of a high reproductive output underlying the JC hypothesis. It predicts that a species with a high reproductive output that usually faces very high juvenile mortalities will benefit more strongly in terms of population size from reduced juvenile mortalities (e.g., resulting from a stochastic reduction in population size) than a species with a low reproductive output that usually comprises low juvenile mortalities. Based on our results, we suggest that reproductive strategy could have contributed to the evolution of the exceptional gigantism seen in dinosaurs that does not exist in extant terrestrial mammals. Large dinosaurs, e.g., the sauropods, may have easily sustained populations of very large-bodied species over evolutionary time.

  14. Reproductive Biology and Its Impact on Body Size: Comparative Analysis of Mammalian, Avian and Dinosaurian Reproduction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Werner, Jan; Griebeler, Eva Maria

    2011-01-01

    Janis and Carrano (1992) suggested that large dinosaurs might have faced a lower risk of extinction under ecological changes than similar-sized mammals because large dinosaurs had a higher potential reproductive output than similar-sized mammals (JC hypothesis). First, we tested the assumption underlying the JC hypothesis. We therefore analysed the potential reproductive output (reflected in clutch/litter size and annual offspring number) of extant terrestrial mammals and birds (as “dinosaur analogs”) and of extinct dinosaurs. With the exception of rodents, the differences in the reproductive output of similar-sized birds and mammals proposed by Janis and Carrano (1992) existed even at the level of single orders. Fossil dinosaur clutches were larger than litters of similar-sized mammals, and dinosaur clutch sizes were comparable to those of similar-sized birds. Because the extinction risk of extant species often correlates with a low reproductive output, the latter difference suggests a lower risk of population extinction in dinosaurs than in mammals. Second, we present a very simple, mathematical model that demonstrates the advantage of a high reproductive output underlying the JC hypothesis. It predicts that a species with a high reproductive output that usually faces very high juvenile mortalities will benefit more strongly in terms of population size from reduced juvenile mortalities (e.g., resulting from a stochastic reduction in population size) than a species with a low reproductive output that usually comprises low juvenile mortalities. Based on our results, we suggest that reproductive strategy could have contributed to the evolution of the exceptional gigantism seen in dinosaurs that does not exist in extant terrestrial mammals. Large dinosaurs, e.g., the sauropods, may have easily sustained populations of very large-bodied species over evolutionary time. PMID:22194835

  15. Reproductive biology and its impact on body size: comparative analysis of mammalian, avian and dinosaurian reproduction.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan Werner

    Full Text Available Janis and Carrano (1992 suggested that large dinosaurs might have faced a lower risk of extinction under ecological changes than similar-sized mammals because large dinosaurs had a higher potential reproductive output than similar-sized mammals (JC hypothesis. First, we tested the assumption underlying the JC hypothesis. We therefore analysed the potential reproductive output (reflected in clutch/litter size and annual offspring number of extant terrestrial mammals and birds (as "dinosaur analogs" and of extinct dinosaurs. With the exception of rodents, the differences in the reproductive output of similar-sized birds and mammals proposed by Janis and Carrano (1992 existed even at the level of single orders. Fossil dinosaur clutches were larger than litters of similar-sized mammals, and dinosaur clutch sizes were comparable to those of similar-sized birds. Because the extinction risk of extant species often correlates with a low reproductive output, the latter difference suggests a lower risk of population extinction in dinosaurs than in mammals. Second, we present a very simple, mathematical model that demonstrates the advantage of a high reproductive output underlying the JC hypothesis. It predicts that a species with a high reproductive output that usually faces very high juvenile mortalities will benefit more strongly in terms of population size from reduced juvenile mortalities (e.g., resulting from a stochastic reduction in population size than a species with a low reproductive output that usually comprises low juvenile mortalities. Based on our results, we suggest that reproductive strategy could have contributed to the evolution of the exceptional gigantism seen in dinosaurs that does not exist in extant terrestrial mammals. Large dinosaurs, e.g., the sauropods, may have easily sustained populations of very large-bodied species over evolutionary time.

  16. Selective Reproduction in the 21st Century

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    detection of fetal anomalies during prenatal screening and testing programs, the development of preimplantation genetic diagnosis techniques as well as the screening of potential gamete donors by egg agencies and sperm banks. Selective Reproduction in the 21st Century provides unique ethnographic insights...... from around the world on how SRTs are made available within different cultural, socio-economic and regulatory settings as well as how people in these settings perceive and make use of new possibilities for selective reproduction as they envision and try to form their future family lives....

  17. Competency profile of Fitness Instructor

    OpenAIRE

    Peterová, Marta

    2011-01-01

    Title: COMPETENCY PROFILE OF FITNESS INSTRUCTOR Objectives: The aim of this work is to find out competencies of fitness instructor and make a competency profile, containing competencies, which are important for excellent fitness instructor. Methods: I applied the method of interview and the method of research in my thesis. The interview was used to make a list of competencies of fitness instructor. The research was applied in the final part of making competency profile, for an attestation of ...

  18. Impact of the environment on reproductive health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1991-01-01

    The WHO workshop on the impact of the environment on reproductive health is summarized. Topics include the nature of environmental factors affecting reproductive health, environmental factors blamed for declining sperm quantity and quality, the effects of natural and man-made disasters on reproductive health, chemical pollutants, how the environment damages reproductive health, and research needs for better research methodologies and surveillance data. Recommendations are made to: 1) promote international research collaboration with an emphasis on consistency of methodological approaches for assessing developmental and reproductive toxicity, on development of improved surveillance systems and data bases, an strengthening international disaster alert and evaluation systems; 2) promote research capabilities for multidisciplinary studies, for interactive studies of the environment and cellular processes, and for expansion of training and education; and 3) take action on priority problems of exposure to chemical, physical, and biological agents, of exposure to pesticides among specific populations, and of inadequate screening methods for identification of environmental chemicals. The costs of environmental injury to reproduction include subfertility, intrauterine growth retardation, spontaneous abortion, and various birth defects. Developed country's primary threats are from chemical pollution, radiation, and stress. There is a large gap in knowledge. Caution is urged in understanding the direct relationship between environmental causes and infertility. Sexual health is difficult to assess and research is suggested. Exposure to excessive vitamin A and toxic chemicals are cited as agents probably having serious effects on malformations. Sperm quality has declined over the decades; there is speculation about the potential causes. The effects of radiation such as at Chernobyl are described. Toxic chemical exposure such as in Bhopal, India killed thousands. Neurological

  19. Methodology review: evaluating person fit

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Meijer, R.R.; Sijtsma, Klaas

    2001-01-01

    Person-fit methods based on classical test theory-and item response theory (IRT), and methods investigating particular types of response behavior on tests, are examined. Similarities and differences among person-fit methods and their advantages and disadvantages are discussed. Sound person-fit

  20. Fitness for duty

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Barnes, D.; Matney, C.

    1991-01-01

    A Fitness For Duty training program was developed to satisfy the requirements of the NRC, 10 CFR 26, 10 CFR 707 and to meet requirements at the Westinghouse Savannah River Company. Interactive videodisc technology was selected as the training medium using the TenCore authoring language. Computer-based training was chosen because of the large number of trainees, the advantages of the reduced overall cost, and the increased trainee retention of course material compared to traditional instruction. The resulting training program utilizes extensive role playing exercises in which employees and supervisors are exposed to real life situations. Extensive interactions by the trainees are required in that they must answer questions concerning the behav ior of individuals, random and for-cause drug testing, and the employee assistance program. Feedback is given in each case. Emphasis is placed on recognition of deteriorating job performance

  1. Multivariate rational data fitting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cuyt, Annie; Verdonk, Brigitte

    1992-12-01

    Sections 1 and 2 discuss the advantages of an object-oriented implementation combined with higher floating-point arithmetic, of the algorithms available for multivariate data fitting using rational functions. Section 1 will in particular explain what we mean by "higher arithmetic". Section 2 will concentrate on the concepts of "object orientation". In sections 3 and 4 we shall describe the generality of the data structure that can be dealt with: due to some new results virtually every data set is acceptable right now, with possible coalescence of coordinates or points. In order to solve the multivariate rational interpolation problem the data sets are fed to different algorithms depending on the structure of the interpolation points in then-variate space.

  2. Reproductive Behaviour Of Timor Deer (Rusa Timorensis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daud Sansudewa

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Timor deer (Rusa timorensis is a newly domesticated animal in Indonesia and other countries in the world. It is a potential source of meat and livelihood. Low birth rate is a problem of deer farming in Indonesia. It happens because of low concern for key aspects of behaviors including reproductive behavior. The aim of this review is to give information about reproductive behavior of Timor deer in natural habitat and captivity breeding. Libido and estrous behaviors of Timor deer in captivity breeding were similar with natural habitat. However, male Timor deer in captivity breeding took longer time to approach the females before mating, compared with those in their natural habitat. Aggressive behavior commonly leads mating. Parturition and maternal behavior of hinds are affected by limitation of space, therefore dividing the area of cage which depends on age and physiological status is needed to improve reproductive management.

  3. Male Reproductive Toxicology: Environmental Exposures vs Reproductive Competence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Like the lecture this chapter begins with an overview of male reproductive biology and transitions into male reproductive toxicology. It ends with a brief discussion of the strengths and weaknesses in male reproductive toxicology and epidemiology today. This chapter is highly il...

  4. Reproductive cycles of deer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asher, G W

    2011-04-01

    The cervids are a complex assemblage of taxa showing extreme diversity in morphology, physiology, ecology and geographical distribution. Reproductive strategies adopted by various species are also diverse, and include a range from highly seasonal to completely aseasonal birth patterns. The recent growth in knowledge on cervid reproduction is strongly biased towards the larger-bodied, gregarious mixed grazer-browser species that have adapted well to human management and commercialisation. These species tend to represent 'K-selected' climax species characterised by very productive annual breeding success, singleton births and long breeding life (10+ years). Conversely, we know relatively little about the reproductive patterns of the 'r-selected' smaller-bodied, solitary (and often highly territorial), forest-dwelling browser species, often characterised by great fecundity (twinning) and shorter breeding life (<10 years). This group includes many of the endangered cervid taxa. This review extends earlier reviews to include more recent work on cervid reproductive cycles, particularly in relation to environmental factors influencing gestation length. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Ethics of Reproductive Engineering

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buuck, R. John

    1977-01-01

    Artificial insemination, in vitro fertilization, artificial placentas, and cloning are examined from a ethical viewpoint. The moral, social, and legal implications of reproductive engineering are considered important to biology as well as medicine. The author suggests that these ethical issues should be included in the biology curriculum and lists…

  6. Melatonin and female reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tamura, Hiroshi; Takasaki, Akihisa; Taketani, Toshiaki; Tanabe, Manabu; Lee, Lifa; Tamura, Isao; Maekawa, Ryo; Aasada, Hiromi; Yamagata, Yoshiaki; Sugino, Norihiro

    2014-01-01

    Melatonin (N-acetyl-5-methoxytryptamine) is secreted during the dark hours at night by the pineal gland. After entering the circulation, melatonin acts as an endocrine factor and a chemical messenger of light and darkness. It regulates a variety of important central and peripheral actions related to circadian rhythms and reproduction. It also affects the brain, immune, gastrointestinal, cardiovascular, renal, bone and endocrine functions and acts as an oncostatic and anti-aging molecule. Many of melatonin's actions are mediated through interactions with specific membrane-bound receptors expressed not only in the central nervous system, but also in peripheral tissues. Melatonin also acts through non-receptor-mediated mechanisms, for example serving as a scavenger for reactive oxygen species and reactive nitrogen species. At both physiological and pharmacological concentrations, melatonin attenuates and counteracts oxidative stress and regulates cellular metabolism. Growing scientific evidence of reproductive physiology supports the role of melatonin in human reproduction. This review was conducted to investigate the effects of melatonin on female reproduction and to summarize our findings in this field. © 2013 The Authors. Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology Research © 2013 Japan Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

  7. Reproduction and Fixed Capital

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Schaik, A.B.T.M.

    2014-01-01

    In the 'sixties, the reproduction model was often the subject of analysis and discussion in economic literat­ ure. Discussion was by criticism of the neo-classical concept of capital as well as by a renewed interest in the labour theory of value. Criticism of the use of a homogeneous concept of

  8. Male Reproductive System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turkington, B. A.

    This autoinstructional lesson deals with the study of the human body with emphasis on the life process of reproduction. It is a learning activity included in high school biology or health education classes. The behavioral objectives are listed and the equipment and materials needed to help the student gain these objectives are also included in the…

  9. Perceptually optimal color reproduction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Yendrikhovskij, S.N.; Blommaert, F.J.J.; Ridder, de H.; Rogowitz, B.E.; Pappas, T.N.

    1998-01-01

    What requirements do people place on optimal color reproduction of real-life scenes? We suggest that when people look at images containing familiar categories of objects, two primary factors shape their subjective impression of how optimal colors are reproduced: perceived naturalness and perceived

  10. Antiherbivore defenses alter natural selection on plant reproductive traits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, Ken A; Johnson, Marc T J

    2016-04-01

    While many studies demonstrate that herbivores alter selection on plant reproductive traits, little is known about whether antiherbivore defenses affect selection on these traits. We hypothesized that antiherbivore defenses could alter selection on reproductive traits by altering trait expression through allocation trade-offs, or by altering interactions with mutualists and/or antagonists. To test our hypothesis, we used white clover, Trifolium repens, which has a Mendelian polymorphism for the production of hydrogen cyanide-a potent antiherbivore defense. We conducted a common garden experiment with 185 clonal families of T. repens that included cyanogenic and acyanogenic genotypes. We quantified resistance to herbivores, and selection on six floral traits and phenology via male and female fitness. Cyanogenesis reduced herbivory but did not alter the expression of reproductive traits through allocation trade-offs. However, the presence of cyanogenic defenses altered natural selection on petal morphology and the number of flowers within inflorescences via female fitness. Herbivory influenced selection on flowers and phenology via female fitness independently of cyanogenesis. Our results demonstrate that both herbivory and antiherbivore defenses alter natural selection on plant reproductive traits. We discuss the significance of these results for understanding how antiherbivore defenses interact with herbivores and pollinators to shape floral evolution. © 2016 The Author(s). Evolution © 2016 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  11. Age-dependent terminal declines in reproductive output in a wild bird.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martijn Hammers

    Full Text Available In many iteroparous species individual fitness components, such as reproductive output, first increase with age and then decline during late-life. However, individuals differ greatly in reproductive lifespan, but reproductive declines may only occur in the period just before their death as a result of an age-independent decline in physiological condition. To fully understand reproductive senescence it is important to investigate to what extent declines in late-life reproduction can be explained by age, time until death, or both. However, the study of late-life fitness performance in natural populations is challenging as the exact birth and death dates of individuals are often not known, and most individuals succumb to extrinsic mortality before reaching old age. Here, we used an exceptional long-term longitudinal dataset of individuals from a natural, closed, and predator-free population of the Seychelles warbler (Acrocephalus sechellensis to investigate reproductive output, both in relation to age and to the time until the death of an individual (reverse-age approach. We observed an initial age-dependent increase in reproductive output that was followed by a decline in old age. However, we found no significant decline in reproductive output in the years directly preceding death. Although post-peak reproductive output declined with age, this pattern differed between terminal and non-terminal reproductive attempts, and the age-dependence of the terminal breeding attempt explained much of the variation in age-specific reproductive output. In fact, terminal declines in reproductive output were steeper in very old individuals. These results indicate that not only age-dependent, but also age-independent factors, such as physiological condition, need to be considered to understand reproductive senescence in wild-living animals.

  12. African Journal of Reproductive Health

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    African Journal of Reproductive Health (AJRH) is published by the Women's Health and ... review articles, short reports and commentaries on reproductive health in Africa. ... Social norms and adolescents' sexual health: an introduction for ...

  13. Preparing for Assisted Reproductive Technology

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... CDC Cancel Submit Search The CDC Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) Note: Javascript is disabled or is not ... visit this page: About CDC.gov . Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) What Is ART Patient Resources Preparing for ...

  14. Advances in reproductive science for wild carnivore conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Comizzoli, P; Crosier, A E; Songsasen, N; Gunther, M Szykman; Howard, J G; Wildt, D E

    2009-07-01

    Knowledge about reproduction is critical for predicting the viability of wildlife populations in nature and for managing breeding programmes in captivity. Intensive species-based studies are the priority, because reproductive mechanisms are extraordinarily diverse, even within the same taxonomic family. Carnivores deserve more attention as such species are highly vulnerable to environmental change and human persecution. The present review provides contemporary illustrations of how reproductive science is contributing to understand unique reproductive mechanisms that are both of fundamental and applied interest. In the case of the endangered African wild dog (Lycaon pictus) free-living in South Africa, non-invasive faecal corticosteroid assessments have yielded new insights about the impact of animal relocation and reintroduction on adaptive responses, reproductive fitness and survival. For the maned wolf (Chrysocyon brachyurus), advances have been made in characterizing and comparing reproductive traits in free-ranging vs captive individuals. For the cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus), recent studies have focused on the cryosensitivity of sperm and the ability to develop a field-friendly sperm cryo-method. The by-product has been a large-scale frozen repository of sperm from wild-caught cheetahs useful for infusing new genes into ex situ populations. Finally, rigorous, multi-disciplinary and cross-institutional reproductive studies of the black-footed ferret (Mustela nigripes), including the use of artificial insemination, have contributed to the remarkable recovery and restoration of this species, once on the brink of extinction. In summary, advances in reproductive science are not necessarily related to 'assisted breeding'. However, understanding the unique ways of carnivore reproduction greatly contributes to species management and conservation.

  15. Reproductive 'surrogacy' and parental licensing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Overall, Christine

    2015-06-01

    A serious moral weakness of reproductive 'surrogacy' is that it can be harmful to the children who are created. This article presents a proposal for mitigating this weakness. Currently, the practice of commercial 'surrogacy' operates only in the interests of the adults involved (the gestator and the commissioning individuals who employ her), not in the interests of the child who is created. Whether 'surrogacy' is seen as the purchase of a baby, the purchase of parental rights, or the purchase of reproductive labor, all three views share the same significant flaws. They endorse the transfer, for a fee, of the infant from the woman who gestated it to those who commissioned it, but without justifying such a transfer; they fail to demonstrate that the commissioners have any entitlement to the infant, or, for that matter, suitability to be the infant's parents; and they fail to take any notice of the infant's needs, interests, and wellbeing. A mere genetic connection is not enough to establish that the commissioners are entitled to receive the baby or that they are competent to raise it. Their good intentions, however caring, are not enough. Therefore, just as in the practice of adoption, there should be a formal institutionalized system for screening and licensing the prospective social parents, which would make the infant's needs, interests, and wellbeing paramount. I reply to several potential objections to this proposal, including the objection that genetic parents who raise their own child are not screened and licensed. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. Female Reproductive System (For Teens)

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... of the Female Reproductive System Print en español Sistema reproductor femenino Reproduction All living things reproduce. Reproduction — ... of Use Notice of Nondiscrimination Visit the Nemours Web site. Note: All information on TeensHealth® is for ...

  17. Prey selectivity affects reproductive success of a corallivorous reef fish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brooker, Rohan M; Jones, Geoffrey P; Munday, Philip L

    2013-06-01

    Most animals consume a narrower range of food resources than is potentially available in the environment, but the underlying basis for these preferences is often poorly understood. Foraging theory predicts that prey selection should represent a trade-off between prey preferences based on nutritional value and prey availability. That is, species should consume preferred prey when available, but select less preferred prey when preferred prey is rare. We employed both field observation and laboratory experiments to examine the relationship between prey selection and preferences in the obligate coral-feeding filefish, Oxymonacanthus longirostris. To determine the drivers of prey selection, we experimentally established prey preferences in choice arenas and tested the consequences of prey preferences for key fitness-related parameters. Field studies showed that individuals fed almost exclusively on live corals from the genus Acropora. While diet was dominated by the most abundant species, Acropora nobilis, fish appeared to preferentially select rarer acroporids, such as A. millepora and A. hyacinthus. Prey choice experiments confirmed strong preferences for these corals, suggesting that field consumption is constrained by availability. In a longer-term feeding experiment, reproductive pairs fed on non-preferred corals exhibited dramatic reductions to body weight, and in hepatic and gonad condition, compared with those fed preferred corals. The majority of pairs fed preferred corals spawned frequently, while no spawning was observed for any pairs fed a non-preferred species of coral. These experiments suggest that fish distinguish between available corals based on their intrinsic value as prey, that reproductive success is dependent on the presence of particular coral species, and that differential loss of preferred corals could have serious consequences for the population success of these dietary specialists.

  18. Relevance of reproductive correlates in response of diamondback moth (Lepidoptera: Plutellidae to plant quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Soufbaf

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available To study the relationships between leaf nitrogen and the reproductive potential of diamondback moth, all reproductive parameters of this pest raised on two canola cultivars were evaluated. A standardized regression coefficient (β was used as an index for nitrogen-reproduction relationship strength. The only difference between net fecundity rate and net fertility rate is hx’s effect, but the difference in their standardized regression coefficients was not significant [β=+0.934 (R2=0.87, F1,4=27.34, P=0.006 and β=+0.922 (R2=0.85, F1,4=22.825, P=0.009]. Accordingly, gross fecundity rate and gross fertility rate differ only in hx’s effect, but the difference in standardized regression coefficients again was not significant [β=0.895 (R2=0.8, F1,4=16.159, P=0.016-0.890 (R2=0.79, F1,4=15.266, P=0.017=0.005]. As gross fecundity rate differs from net fecundity rate only in midpoint survivorship (Lx’s effect, it is understood that survivorship could affect the plant nitrogen–fecundity relation considerably (standardized coefficients difference=0.044 and could be a critical parameter in insectplant interactions. But, the terms of reproductive parameters, i.e. Lx and hx, showed the same effect on the strength of nitrogen-fecundity regression statistically, even though Lx has been selected frequently by many researchers as an important fitness correlate. Measuring the hatch rate could be recommended in trophic interactions studies due to its being easier to apply, more robust, and quicker to accomplish than measurement of survivorship; however, it is important as an indicator in combination with brood size for determining the initial population size of an insect herbivore.

  19. Plumage polymorphism and fitness in Swainson's hawks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Briggs, C W; Collopy, M W; Woodbridge, B

    2011-10-01

    We examine the maintenance of a plumage polymorphism, variation in plumages among the same age and sex class within a population, in a population of Swainson's Hawks. We take advantage of 32 years of data to examine two prevalent hypotheses used to explain the persistence of morphs: apostatic selection and heterozygous advantage. We investigate differences in fitness among three morph classes of a melanistic trait in Swainson's Hawks: light (7% of the local breeding population), intermediate (57%) and dark (36%). Specifically, we examined morph differences in adult apparent survival, breeding success, annual number of fledglings produced, probability of offspring recruitment into the breeding population and lifetime reproductive success (LRS). If apostatic selection were a factor in maintaining morphs, we would expect that individuals with the least frequent morph would perform best in one or more of these fitness categories. Alternatively, if heterozygous advantage played a role in the maintenance of this polymorphism, we would expect heterozygotes (i.e. intermediate morphs) to have one or more increased rates in these categories. We found no difference in adult apparent survival between morph classes. Similarly, there were no differences in breeding success, nest productivity, LRS or probability of recruitment of offspring between parental morph. We conclude that neither apostatic selection nor heterozygous advantage appear to play a role in maintaining morphs in this population. © 2011 The Authors. Journal of Evolutionary Biology © 2011 European Society For Evolutionary Biology.

  20. Reproductive rights approach to reproductive health in developing countries

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vijayan K. Pillai

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Research on reproductive health in developing countries focuses mostly on the role of economic development on various components of reproductive health. Cross-sectional and empirical research studies in particular on the effects of non-economic factors such as reproductive rights remain few and far between.This study investigates the influence of two components of an empowerment strategy, gender equality, and reproductive rights on women's reproductive health in developing countries. The empowerment strategy for improving reproductive health is theoretically situated on a number of background factors such as economic and social development.Cross-national socioeconomic and demographic data from a number of international organizations on 142 developing countries are used to test a model of reproductive rights and reproductive health.The findings suggest that both economic and democratic development have significant positive effects on levels of gender equality. The level of social development plays a prominent role in promoting reproductive rights. It is found that reproductive rights channel the influences of social structural factors and gender equality on reproductive health.

  1. Reproductive rights approach to reproductive health in developing countries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pillai, Vijayan K; Gupta, Rashmi

    2011-01-01

    Research on reproductive health in developing countries focuses mostly on the role of economic development on various components of reproductive health. Cross-sectional and empirical research studies in particular on the effects of non-economic factors such as reproductive rights remain few and far between. This study investigates the influence of two components of an empowerment strategy, gender equality, and reproductive rights on women's reproductive health in developing countries. The empowerment strategy for improving reproductive health is theoretically situated on a number of background factors such as economic and social development. Cross-national socioeconomic and demographic data from a number of international organizations on 142 developing countries are used to test a model of reproductive rights and reproductive health. The findings suggest that both economic and democratic development have significant positive effects on levels of gender equality. The level of social development plays a prominent role in promoting reproductive rights. It is found that reproductive rights channel the influences of social structural factors and gender equality on reproductive health.

  2. Sensitization of Parker fittings

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wilber, W.W.

    1985-09-01

    At your request, ferrules from 316 SS Parker-Hannifen compression fittings at the FFTF have been examined and evaluated to determine the metallurgical condition as related to carbide precipitation in grain boundaries (known as sensitization) and the implications this may have with regard to corrosion resistance. To accomplish this, two ferrules from new stock, two ferrules from old stock and two ferrules that had seen service were examined metallurgically. The samples were prepared for optical metallography. They were viewed in both the etched and unetched condition and analyzed on the scanning electron microscope (SEM) for elemental content. It was confirmed that the ferrules from new stock had a 5 mil thick nitrided layer on the ferrule ID at the lead end and that the 316 SS ferrule material was in the sensitized condition, indicating low resistance to aqueous corrosion. The material from old stock had no nitride layer but was in the sensitized condition indicating low resistance to aqueous corrosion. The ferrules that had seen service had not been nitrided and were not sensitized indicating high resistance to aqueous corrosion

  3. Reproductive Conflict and the Evolution of Menopause in Killer Whales.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Croft, Darren P; Johnstone, Rufus A; Ellis, Samuel; Nattrass, Stuart; Franks, Daniel W; Brent, Lauren J N; Mazzi, Sonia; Balcomb, Kenneth C; Ford, John K B; Cant, Michael A

    2017-01-23

    Why females of some species cease ovulation prior to the end of their natural lifespan is a long-standing evolutionary puzzle [1-4]. The fitness benefits of post-reproductive helping could in principle select for menopause [1, 2, 5], but the magnitude of these benefits appears insufficient to explain the timing of menopause [6-8]. Recent theory suggests that the cost of inter-generational reproductive conflict between younger and older females of the same social unit is a critical missing term in classical inclusive fitness calculations (the "reproductive conflict hypothesis" [6, 9]). Using a unique long-term dataset on wild resident killer whales, where females can live decades after their final parturition, we provide the first test of this hypothesis in a non-human animal. First, we confirm previous theoretical predictions that local relatedness increases with female age up to the end of reproduction. Second, we construct a new evolutionary model and show that given these kinship dynamics, selection will favor younger females that invest more in competition, and thus have greater reproductive success, than older females (their mothers) when breeding at the same time. Third, we test this prediction using 43 years of individual-based demographic data in resident killer whales and show that when mothers and daughters co-breed, the mortality hazard of calves from older-generation females is 1.7 times that of calves from younger-generation females. Intergenerational conflict combined with the known benefits conveyed to kin by post-reproductive females can explain why killer whales have evolved the longest post-reproductive lifespan of all non-human animals. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  4. Is High-Intensity Functional Training (HIFT)/CrossFit Safe for Military Fitness Training?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poston, Walker S C; Haddock, Christopher K; Heinrich, Katie M; Jahnke, Sara A; Jitnarin, Nattinee; Batchelor, David B

    2016-07-01

    High-intensity functional training (HIFT) is a promising fitness paradigm that gained popularity among military populations. Rather than biasing workouts toward maximizing fitness domains such as aerobic endurance, HIFT workouts are designed to promote general physical preparedness. HIFT programs have proliferated as a result of concerns about the relevance of traditional physical training (PT), which historically focused on aerobic condition via running. Other concerns about traditional PT include: (1) the relevance of service fitness tests given current combat demands, (2) the perception that military PT is geared toward passing service fitness tests, and (3) that training for combat requires more than just aerobic endurance. Despite its' popularity in the military, concerns have been raised about HIFT's injury potential, leading to some approaches being labeled as "extreme conditioning programs" by several military and civilian experts. Given HIFT programs' popularity in the military and concerns about injury, a review of data on HIFT injury potential is needed to inform military policy. The purpose of this review is to: (1) provide an overview of scientific methods used to appropriately compare injury rates among fitness activities and (2) evaluate scientific data regarding HIFT injury risk compared to traditional military PT and other accepted fitness activities. Reprint & Copyright © 2016 Association of Military Surgeons of the U.S.

  5. Is High Intensity Functional Training (HIFT)/CrossFit® Safe for Military Fitness Training?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poston, Walker S.C.; Haddock, Christopher K.; Heinrich, Katie M.; Jahnke, Sara A.; Jitnarin, Nattinee; Batchelor, David B.

    2016-01-01

    High-intensity functional training (HIFT) is a promising fitness paradigm that gained popularity among military populations. Rather than biasing workouts toward maximizing fitness domains such as aerobic endurance, HIFT workouts are designed to promote general physical preparedness. HIFT programs have proliferated due to concerns about the relevance of traditional physical training (PT), which historically focused on aerobic condition via running. Other concerns about traditional PT include: 1) the relevance of service fitness tests given current combat demands; 2) the perception that military PT is geared toward passing service fitness tests; and 3) that training for combat requires more than just aerobic endurance. Despite its’ popularity in the military, concerns have been raised about HIFT’s injury potential, leading to some approaches being labeled as “extreme conditioning programs” by several military and civilian experts. Given HIFT programs’ popularity in the military and concerns about injury, a review of data on HIFT injury potential is needed to inform military policy. The purpose of this review is to: 1) provide an overview of scientific methods used to appropriately compare injury rates among fitness activities; and 2) evaluate scientific data regarding HIFT injury risk compared to traditional military PT and other accepted fitness activities PMID:27391615

  6. Constraints, Trade-offs and the Currency of Fitness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Acerenza, Luis

    2016-03-01

    Understanding evolutionary trajectories remains a difficult task. This is because natural evolutionary processes are simultaneously affected by various types of constraints acting at the different levels of biological organization. Of particular importance are constraints where correlated changes occur in opposite directions, called trade-offs. Here we review and classify the main evolutionary constraints and trade-offs, operating at all levels of trait hierarchy. Special attention is given to life history trade-offs and the conflict between the survival and reproduction components of fitness. Cellular mechanisms underlying fitness trade-offs are described. At the metabolic level, a linear trade-off between growth and flux variability was found, employing bacterial genome-scale metabolic reconstructions. Its analysis indicates that flux variability can be considered as the currency of fitness. This currency is used for fitness transfer between fitness components during adaptations. Finally, a discussion is made regarding the constraints which limit the increase in the amount of fitness currency during evolution, suggesting that occupancy constraints are probably the main restrictions.

  7. Epidemia de fitness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wanja Bastos

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Este artigo tem como objetivo refletir sobre uma condição naturalizada e disseminada principalmente pelo campo da nova promoção à saúde e reforçada nos espaços de atuação da educação física, a que se denominou epidemia de fitness. O termo refere-se a hábitos e comportamentos obsessivos com a saúde, beleza e vitalidade, tornando-se alvo de exercício de controle por parte de especialistas. Para discuti-la realizou-se um estudo de caso em que foram submetidos à análise semiótica, por meio do método de leitura isotópica, 59 materiais de divulgação, impressos, coletados na Expo Wellness Rio 2009, uma feira de negócios inserida no Congresso Wellness Rio 2009. As categorias isotópicas que emergiram a partir da análise são as seguintes: saúde/beleza e tecnologia, saúde/beleza e especialidade e saúde/beleza e longevidade. Elas apontam para a potencialização da vitalidade humana como mola propulsora das estratégias discursivas, assim como valor recorrente que embasa ações voltadas para a melhoria das condições de saúde, imbricadas à ideia de longevidade e beleza.

  8. Genetic diversity and reproductive success in mandrills (Mandrillus sphinx).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charpentier, M; Setchell, J M; Prugnolle, F; Knapp, L A; Wickings, E J; Peignot, P; Hossaert-McKey, M

    2005-11-15

    Recent studies of wild animal populations have shown that estimators of neutral genetic diversity, such as mean heterozygosity, are often correlated with various fitness traits, such as survival, disease susceptibility, or reproductive success. We used two estimators of genetic diversity to explore the relationship between heterozygosity and reproductive success in male and female mandrills (Mandrillus sphinx) living in a semifree ranging setting in Gabon. Because social rank is known to influence reproductive success in both sexes, we also examined the correlation between genetic diversity and social rank in females, and acquisition of alpha status in males, as well as length of alpha male tenure. We found that heterozygous individuals showed greater reproductive success, with both females and males producing more offspring. However, heterozygosity influenced reproductive success only in dominant males, not in subordinates. Neither the acquisition of alpha status in males, nor social rank in females, was significantly correlated with heterozygosity, although more heterozygous alpha males showed longer tenure than homozygous ones. We also tested whether the benefits of greater genetic diversity were due mainly to a genome-wide effect of inbreeding depression or to heterosis at one or a few loci. Multilocus effects best explained the correlation between heterozygosity and reproductive success and tenure, indicating the occurrence of inbreeding depression in this mandrill colony.

  9. Reproduction in moose at their southern range limit

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruprecht, Joel S.; Hersey, Kent R.; Hafen, Konrad; Monteith, Kevin L.; DeCesare, Nicholas J.; Kauffman, Matthew J.; MacNulty, Daniel R.

    2016-01-01

    Reproduction is a critical fitness component in large herbivores. Biogeographic models predict that populations occurring at the edges of the range may have compromised reproductive rates because of inferior habitat at range peripheries. When reproductive rates are chronically low, ungulate populations may lack the resiliency to rebound quickly after periods of environmental stress, and this effect may be greatest for heat-sensitive organisms at their southern range limit. To assess the demographic vulnerability of moose ( Alces alces ), we studied relationships between reproductive rates, maternal age, and rump fat in the southernmost naturally occurring moose population in North America. For prime-aged moose in our study, pregnancy rates were high (92%), but moose aged 9 years had low pregnancy rates (32% and 38%, respectively). The relationship between rump fat and pregnancy was nonlinear such that a threshold of at least 2mm of rump fat yielded a high probability of being pregnant midwinter. In contrast, among pregnant moose, the probability of both producing a calf and recruiting it until spring increased linearly with rump fat. We also conducted a meta-analysis of pregnancy and twinning rates for adult (≥ 2 years) moose across a latitudinal gradient to compare reproductive rates from our study to other populations in North America. Moose living at southern latitudes tended to have lower reproductive rates than those living in the core of moose range, implying that southern moose populations may be demographically more vulnerable than northern moose populations.

  10. Exercise and reproductive dysfunction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, E C; Brzyski, R G

    1999-01-01

    To provide an overview of our current understanding of exercise-induced reproductive dysfunction and an approach to its evaluation and management. A MEDLINE search was performed to review all articles with title words related to menstrual dysfunction, amenorrhea, oligomenorrhea, exercise, and athletic activities from 1966 to 1998. The pathophysiology, proposed mechanisms, clinical manifestations, evaluation, and management of exercise-associated reproductive dysfunction were compiled. Exercise-induced menstrual irregularity appears to be multifactorial in origin and remains a diagnosis of exclusion. The underlying mechanisms are mainly speculative. Clinical manifestations range from luteal phase deficiency to anovulation, amenorrhea, and even delayed menarche. Evaluation should include a thorough history and a complete physical plus pelvic examination. Most cases are reversible with dietary and exercise modifications. Hormonal replacement in cases of a prolonged hypoestrogenic state with evidence of increased bone loss is recommended, although the long-term consequences of prolonged hormonal deficiency are ill-defined.

  11. Fitness Landscapes of Functional RNAs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ádám Kun

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available The notion of fitness landscapes, a map between genotype and fitness, was proposed more than 80 years ago. For most of this time data was only available for a few alleles, and thus we had only a restricted view of the whole fitness landscape. Recently, advances in genetics and molecular biology allow a more detailed view of them. Here we review experimental and theoretical studies of fitness landscapes of functional RNAs, especially aptamers and ribozymes. We find that RNA structures can be divided into critical structures, connecting structures, neutral structures and forbidden structures. Such characterisation, coupled with theoretical sequence-to-structure predictions, allows us to construct the whole fitness landscape. Fitness landscapes then can be used to study evolution, and in our case the development of the RNA world.

  12. Successful reproduction of unmated Tropilaelaps mercedesae and its implication on mite population growth in Apis mellifera colonies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Highly hygienic colonies are known to reduce the reproductive potential of Varroa destructor. For Tropilaelaps mercedesae, information on how bee behavior may influence the mite’s reproductive potential is currently unknown. In this study, we assessed the influence of recapping on the reproduction o...

  13. [Reproduction and psyche].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rohde, Anke

    2007-01-01

    Mental health and mental disorders can have a close connection to reproduction, especially for women but also for men. The most frequent disorders or problems are described, i.e., mental problems during pregnancy and after delivery, during the menstrual cycle and around menopause. Possible consequences of miscarriage, stillbirth and induced abortion are presented as well as the special problem of a wish for a child in mentally ill women and their treatment during pregnancy.

  14. Local fit evaluation of structural equation models using graphical criteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thoemmes, Felix; Rosseel, Yves; Textor, Johannes

    2018-03-01

    Evaluation of model fit is critically important for every structural equation model (SEM), and sophisticated methods have been developed for this task. Among them are the χ² goodness-of-fit test, decomposition of the χ², derived measures like the popular root mean square error of approximation (RMSEA) or comparative fit index (CFI), or inspection of residuals or modification indices. Many of these methods provide a global approach to model fit evaluation: A single index is computed that quantifies the fit of the entire SEM to the data. In contrast, graphical criteria like d-separation or trek-separation allow derivation of implications that can be used for local fit evaluation, an approach that is hardly ever applied. We provide an overview of local fit evaluation from the viewpoint of SEM practitioners. In the presence of model misfit, local fit evaluation can potentially help in pinpointing where the problem with the model lies. For models that do fit the data, local tests can identify the parts of the model that are corroborated by the data. Local tests can also be conducted before a model is fitted at all, and they can be used even for models that are globally underidentified. We discuss appropriate statistical local tests, and provide applied examples. We also present novel software in R that automates this type of local fit evaluation. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved).

  15. Health and Fitness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Astrand, Per Olaf

    The need for physical activity to maintain good health is emphasized in this book. Regular exercise and a balanced diet are regarded as being of prime importance. The nutritional and caloric values of various diets are discussed in relation to their energy producing potential as well as their effect on body weight. Photographs, charts, and line…

  16. Leading a Culture of Fitness

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-03-24

    professional fighting force. Numerous studies indicate physical fitness improves cognitive function, the ability to handle stress, injury recovery...4 ―What is Fitness?‖ The CrossFit Journal (October 2002) http://www.crossfit.com (accessed 11 February, 2011). An excellent article beyond the...scope of this paper. Although our definition was derived from Crossfit , it is our position that Crossfit is not, and should not be, the only method to

  17. Physical Fitness in the Army

    Science.gov (United States)

    1977-03-17

    in fitness as the absence of disease or injury . The coach defines fitness as §l’Jse factors responsible for success in a sport. The leader is...lower back and legs to gradually increase your body’s level of activity. This will reduce the risk of injury and prevent unnecessary soreness. Also, a...flexibility. Let’s discuss the importance of muscular fitness and how we can achieve this kind of fitneas through weightlifting or calisthenics. Remember

  18. Reproductive concessions between related and unrelated members promote eusociality in bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrade, Aline C R; Miranda, Elder A; Del Lama, Marco A; Nascimento, Fábio S

    2016-05-23

    Animal societies exhibit remarkable variation in their breeding strategies. Individuals can maximize their fitness by either reproducing or by helping relatives. Social hymenopterans have been key taxa for the study of Hamilton's inclusive fitness theory because the haplodiploid sex-determination system results in asymmetric relatedness among breeders producing conflict over the partitioning of reproduction. In small cooperative groups of insects, totipotent individuals may maximize their inclusive fitness by controlling reproduction despotically rather than helping their relatives. Here, we demonstrate that the dominant females of the primitively eusocial bee Euglossa melanotricha (Apidae: Euglossini) control reproduction, but concede part of the reproductive output with their related and unrelated subordinates. As expected, a dominant female capitalizes on the direct reproduction of related subordinates, according to her interests. We found that reproductive skew was positively correlated with relatedness. The concessions were highly reduced in mother-daughter and sibling nests (relatedness r ± s.d. = 0.54 ± 0.02 and 0.79 ± 0.02, respectively) but much more egalitarian in unrelated associations (r = -0.10 ± 0.01). We concluded that reproductive skew in these primitively eusocial bees is strongly related to the genetic structure of associations, and also that females are able to assess pairwise relatedness, either directly or indirectly, and use this information to mediate social contracts.

  19. Painting Reproductions on Display

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joanna Iranowska

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Paintings in museums might occasionally be replaced by a photoprint mimicking the original. This article is an investigation of what constitutes a good reproduction of an artwork (oil painting that is meant to be displayed. The article discusses what the usefulness of reproductions depends on, applying the Valuation Studies approach, which means the primary concern is with the practice of valuing itself. In other words, the study focuses on how museum experts evaluate reproduc-tions of oil paintings. The article analyses three cases of displaying digitally prin-ted copies of Edvard Munch's oil paintings between 2013 and 2015 in the Munch Museum and in the National Gallery in Oslo. The study is based on a series of semi-structured interviews with the experts, working at and for the museums, that were involved in producing and exhibiting of the photoprints: curators, con-servators, museum educators, and external manufacturers. The interviews were grouped into five clusters, which I have chosen to call registers of valuing following Frank Heuts and Annemarie Mol (2013. The described valuation practices have to do with delivering experiences to the public, obtaining mimetic resemblance, solving ethical aspects, exhibitions' budget, and last but not least, with the time perspective.

  20. Folate and human reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tamura, Tsunenobu; Picciano, Mary Frances

    2006-05-01

    The influence of folate nutritional status on various pregnancy outcomes has long been recognized. Studies conducted in the 1950s and 1960s led to the recognition of prenatal folic acid supplementation as a means to prevent pregnancy-induced megaloblastic anemia. In the 1990s, the utility of periconceptional folic acid supplementation and folic acid food fortification emerged when they were proven to prevent the occurrence of neural tube defects. These distinctively different uses of folic acid may well be ranked among the most significant public health measures for the prevention of pregnancy-related disorders. Folate is now viewed not only as a nutrient needed to prevent megaloblastic anemia in pregnancy but also as a vitamin essential for reproductive health. This review focuses on the relation between various outcomes of human reproduction (ie, pregnancy, lactation, and male reproduction) and folate nutrition and metabolism, homocysteine metabolism, and polymorphisms of genes that encode folate-related enzymes or proteins, and we identify issues for future research.

  1. Influence of adult nutrition on the relationship between body size and reproductive parameters in a parasitoid wasp

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bezemer, T.M.; Harvey, J.A.; Mills, N.J.

    2005-01-01

    1. An important constraint upon life-history evolution in parasitoids is the limit imposed by body size on allocation of limited metabolic resources to different fitness-related physiological functions such as reproduction and survival. 2. The influence of adult nutrition on reproductive and

  2. New reproductive genetics: political issues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanft, R S

    1993-09-01

    For the last 12 years, the reproductive policies of the executive branch of US government have been dominated by the anti-abortion, right-to-life position. Since coming to office, the Clinton administration has lifted the gag rule on abortion advice, removed the barrier to fetal tissue research, encouraged application for premarket approval of RU-486, and approved the female condom. The new administration's future policy and action taken on abortion, new drugs (e.g., RU-486), fetal tissue research, and payments for prenatal diagnosis, prenatal therapy, and abortion are outlined. President Clinton clearly has enunciated a pro-choice stance on abortion, and rescinded current regulations restricting abortion. The gag rule was lifted on January 22, 1993. The French manufacturer of RU-486 has not applied to the Food and Drug Administration for premarket approval out of concern for the reaction of both the federal executive and a potential boycott of other products by right-to-life, anti-abortion groups. New factors may encourage the manufacturer to apply for approval. The US Public Health Service can be expected to expand information and prevention activities to slow the spread of AIDS and to increase efforts for family planning to reduce teenage pregnancy. Fetal tissue research has contributed to such breakthroughs as prenatal diagnosis, in vitro surgery, and transplantation. The ban on the research was lifted early in the new administration. Aside from the issue of financial coverage under insurance plans to pay for prenatal diagnosis, prenatal therapy, and abortion, prenatal therapy raises a potential new conflict between the mother and her fetus. It raises issues related to equality for the disabled, particularly after life outside the womb is possible. In 2 years there could be a reversal of power in the Congress, again raising the specter of efforts to restrict developments in the field of reproductive biology.

  3. Alternative reproductive tactics and inverse size-assortment in a high-density fish spawning aggregation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karkarey, Rucha; Zambre, Amod; Isvaran, Kavita; Arthur, Rohan

    2017-02-28

    At high densities, terrestrial and marine species often employ alternate reproductive tactics (ARTs) to maximize reproductive benefits. We describe ARTs in a high-density and unfished spawning aggregation of the squaretail grouper (Plectropomus areolatus) in Lakshadweep, India. As previously reported for this species, territorial males engage in pair-courtship, which is associated with a pair-spawning tactic. Here, we document a previously unreported school-courtship tactic; where territorial males court multiple females in mid-water schools, which appears to culminate in a unique 'school-spawning' tactic. Courtship tactics were conditional on body size, local mate density and habitat, likely associated with changing trade-offs between potential mating opportunities and intra-sexual competition. Counter-intuitively, the aggregation showed a habitat-specific inverse size-assortment: large males courted small females on the reef slope while small males courted equal-sized or larger females on the shelf. These patterns remained stable across two years of observation at high, unfished densities. These unique density-dependent behaviours may disappear from this aggregation as overall densities decline due to increasing commercial fishing pressure, with potentially large consequences for demographics and fitness.

  4. KrioBlast TM as a New Technology of Hyper-fast Cryopreservation of Cells and Tissues. Part I. Thermodynamic Aspects and Potential Applications in Reproductive and Regenerative Medicine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katkov, I I; Bolyukh, V F; Sukhikh, G T

    2018-03-01

    Kinetic (dynamic) vitrification is a promising trend in cryopreservation of biological materials because it allows avoiding the formation of lethal intracellular ice and minimizes harmful effects of highly toxic penetrating cryoprotectants. A uniform cooling protocol and the same instruments can be used for practically all types of cells. In modern technologies, the rate of cooling is essentially limited by the Leidenfrost effect. We describe a novel platform for kinetic vitrification of biological materials KrioBlast TM that realizes hyper-fast cooling and allows overcoming the Leidenfrost effect. This opens prospects for creation of a novel technology of cell cryopreservation for reproductive and regenerative medicine.

  5. A Reinterpretation of the sovereignty concept and the Ibero- American Countries : An Analysis of Traditional Concept of Sovereignty as a potential factor in the costs of Social Reproduction in the Ibero - American

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ingrid Giachini Althaus

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available This article assumes that a new concept of sovereignty is necessary, leaving aside the idea of absolute power of the nations of the world, distancing itself from the increasing demands proposed by the globalized society. Analyzing the concept of sovereignty, from of the Second World War, te problems of this traditional view are highlighted in the Ibero-American nations. From this perspective, taking as a basis the neoliberal economic system, initially foreign to Ibero American history, building work was done with this new concept for an economic analysis of law, the factors parallel efficiency and reproduction of the social costs versus populism. The meaningful takes place of meaning.

  6. Heparin for assisted reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akhtar, Muhammad A; Sur, Shyamaly; Raine-Fenning, Nick; Jayaprakasan, Kannamannadiar; Thornton, Jim G; Quenby, Siobhan

    2013-08-17

    Heparin as an adjunct in assisted reproduction (peri-implantation heparin) is given at or after egg collection or at embryo transfer during assisted reproduction. Heparin has been advocated to improve embryo implantation and clinical outcomes.  It has been proposed that heparin enhances the intra-uterine environment by improving decidualisation with an associated activation of growth factors and a cytokine expression profile in the endometrium that is favourable to pregnancy. To investigate whether the administration of heparin around the time of implantation (peri-implantation heparin) improves clinical outcomes in subfertile women undergoing assisted reproduction. A comprehensive and exhaustive search strategy was developed in consultation with the Trials Search Co-ordinator of the Cochrane Menstrual Disorders and Subfertility Group (MDSG). The strategy was used in an attempt to identify all relevant studies regardless of language or publication status (published, unpublished, in press, and in progress). Relevant trials were identified from both electronic databases and other resources (last search 6 May 2013). All randomised controlled trials (RCTs) were included where peri-implantation heparin was given during assisted reproduction. Peri-implantation low molecular weight heparin (LMWH) during IVF/ICSI was given at or after egg collection or at embryo transfer in the included studies. Live birth rate was the primary outcome. Two review authors independently assessed the eligibility and quality of trials and extracted relevant data. The quality of the evidence was evaluated using GRADE methods. Three RCTs (involving 386 women) were included in the review.Peri-implantation LMWH administration during assisted reproduction was associated with a significant improvement in live birth rate compared with placebo or no LMWH (odds ratio (OR) 1.77, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.07 to 2.90, three studies, 386 women, I(2) = 51%, very low quality evidence with high

  7. A model for estimating the minimum number of offspring to sample in studies of reproductive success.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Joseph H; Ward, Eric J; Carlson, Stephanie M

    2011-01-01

    Molecular parentage permits studies of selection and evolution in fecund species with cryptic mating systems, such as fish, amphibians, and insects. However, there exists no method for estimating the number of offspring that must be assigned parentage to achieve robust estimates of reproductive success when only a fraction of offspring can be sampled. We constructed a 2-stage model that first estimated the mean (μ) and variance (v) in reproductive success from published studies on salmonid fishes and then sampled offspring from reproductive success distributions simulated from the μ and v estimates. Results provided strong support for modeling salmonid reproductive success via the negative binomial distribution and suggested that few offspring samples are needed to reject the null hypothesis of uniform offspring production. However, the sampled reproductive success distributions deviated significantly (χ(2) goodness-of-fit test p value reproductive success distribution at rates often >0.05 and as high as 0.24, even when hundreds of offspring were assigned parentage. In general, reproductive success patterns were less accurate when offspring were sampled from cohorts with larger numbers of parents and greater variance in reproductive success. Our model can be reparameterized with data from other species and will aid researchers in planning reproductive success studies by providing explicit sampling targets required to accurately assess reproductive success.

  8. Interannual variability of growth and reproduction in Bursera simaruba: the role of allometry and resource variability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hulshof, Catherine M; Stegen, James C; Swenson, Nathan G; Enquist, Carolyn A F; Enquist, Brian J

    2012-01-01

    Plants are expected to differentially allocate resources to reproduction, growth, and survival in order to maximize overall fitness. Life history theory predicts that the allocation of resources to reproduction should occur at the expense of vegetative growth. Although it is known that both organism size and resource availability can influence life history traits, few studies have addressed how size dependencies of growth and reproduction and variation in resource supply jointly affect the coupling between growth and reproduction. In order to understand the relationship between growth and reproduction in the context of resource variability, we utilize a long-term observational data set consisting of 670 individual trees over a 10-year period within a local population of Bursera simaruba (L.) Sarg. We (1) quantify the functional form and variability in the growth-reproduction relationship at the population and individual-tree level and (2) develop a theoretical framework to understand the allometric dependence of growth and reproduction. Our findings suggest that the differential responses of allometric growth and reproduction to resource availability, both between years and between microsites, underlie the apparent relationship between growth and reproduction. Finally, we offer an alternative approach for quantifying the relationship between growth and reproduction that accounts for variation in allometries.

  9. Reproduction elevates the corticosterone stress response in common fruit bats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klose, Stefan M; Smith, Carolynn L; Denzel, Andrea J; Kalko, Elisabeth K V

    2006-04-01

    Changes in reproductive state or the environment may affect the sensitivity of the hypothalamic-pituitary-andrenal (HPA) axis. However, little is known about the dynamics of the resulting corticosteroid stress response, in particular in tropical mammals. In this study, we address the modulation of corticosterone release in response to different reproductive conditions and seasonality in 326 free-living common fruit-eating bats (Artibeus jamaicensis) on Barro Colorado Island in Panama during dry and wet seasons. We present strong evidence that stress sensitivity is primarily modulated by reproductive condition. In reproductively active females, corticosterone increases were more rapid and reached higher levels, but also decreased significantly faster than in inactive females. The corticosterone response was weaker in reproducing males than in females and delayed compared to non-reproductive males. Testes volume in reproductively active males was negatively correlated with corticosterone concentrations. Our findings suggest differentiated dynamics in the corticosterone stress response between sexes, potentially reflecting conflicting ecological demands. In females, a strong acute corticosterone response may represent high stress- and risk-sensitivity that facilitates escape and thus helps to protect reproduction. In males, suppression during reproductive activity could reflect lowered stress sensitivity to avoid chronically elevated corticosterone levels in times of frequent aggressive and therefore costly inter-male encounters.

  10. Reproductive conflict delays the recovery of an endangered social species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    López-Sepulcre, Andrés; Norris, Ken; Kokko, Hanna

    2009-01-01

    1. Evolutionary theory predicts that individuals, in order to increase their relative fitness, can evolve behaviours that are detrimental for the group or population. This mismatch is particularly visible in social organisms. Despite its potential to affect the population dynamics of social animals, this principle has not yet been applied to real-life conservation. 2. Social group structure has been argued to stabilize population dynamics due to the buffering effects of nonreproducing subordinates. However, competition for breeding positions in such species can also interfere with the reproduction of breeding pairs. 3. Seychelles magpie robins, Copsychus sechellarum, live in social groups where subordinate individuals do not breed. Analysis of long-term individual-based data and short-term behavioural observations show that subordinates increase the territorial takeover frequency of established breeders. Such takeovers delay offspring production and decrease territory productivity. 4. Individual-based simulations of the Seychelles magpie robin population parameterized with the long-term data show that this process has significantly postponed the recovery of the species from the Critically Endangered status. 5. Social conflict thus can extend the period of high extinction risk, which we show to have population consequences that should be taken into account in management programmes. This is the first quantitative assessment of the effects of social conflict on conservation.

  11. Promoting effects on reproduction increase population vulnerability of Daphnia magna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agatz, Annika; Hammers-Wirtz, Monika; Gabsi, Faten; Ratte, Hans Toni; Brown, Colin D; Preuss, Thomas G

    2012-07-01

    Environmental risk assessment of chemicals is based on single species tests at the individual level with single compounds. However, the protection goal is the sustainability of a population, which faces several natural stressors and mixtures of chemicals in the environment. Therefore, experiments were undertaken to quantify the combined effects of chemicals with different modes of action on Daphnia magna populations. Populations continuously exposed to dispersogen A and at abundance equilibrium were treated with a 2-d pulse of p353-nonylphenol. In previous studies, dispersogen A was shown to act as a natural info-chemical, promoting the reproduction of daphnids (higher offspring quantity) coupled with reduced offspring fitness, whereas nonylphenol in pulsed-exposure caused size-selective mortality. Dispersogen A caused accelerated population growth to maximum abundance, shifted the population structure towards smaller individuals, and increased the population sensitivity to nonylphenol. The authors showed that a positive effect observed at the individual level can be transposed to a negative effect when monitored at the population level. So far, positive effects are not addressed in environmental risk assessment, and even in higher-tier testing, population structure is not quantified. Both factors indicate a potential mismatch between protection aim and risk assessment practice. Copyright © 2012 SETAC.

  12. Damped-dynamics flexible fitting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kovacs, Julio A; Yeager, Mark; Abagyan, Ruben

    2008-10-01

    In fitting atomic structures into EM maps, it often happens that the map corresponds to a different conformation of the structure. We have developed a new methodology to handle these situations that preserves the covalent geometry of the structure and allows the modeling of large deformations. The first goal is achieved by working in generalized coordinates (positional and internal coordinates), and the second by avoiding harmonic potentials. Instead, we use dampers (shock absorbers) between every pair of atoms, combined with a force field that attracts the atomic structure toward incompletely occupied regions of the EM map. The trajectory obtained by integrating the resulting equations of motion converges to a conformation that, in our validation cases, was very close to the target atomic structure. Compared to current methods, our approach is more efficient and robust against wrong solutions and to overfitting, and does not require user intervention or subjective decisions. Applications to the computation of transition pathways between known conformers, homology and loop modeling, as well as protein docking, are also discussed.

  13. A Study of the Physical Fitness Test in Relation to Demographics, Academic Achievement, and Students' Physical Fitness Perceptions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mobilia-Jones, Karen

    2010-01-01

    This study examines the overall results of the Physical Fitness Test (PFT) and the six fitness areas of the PFT, academic achievement, demographics and self perceptions and the potential impact on students' performance on the PFT. While academic expectations are increasing, the adolescent obesity rate is also increasing, producing a decline in the…

  14. Female Fitness in the Blogosphere

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jesper Andreasson

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available This article analyzes self-portrayals and gender constructions among female personal trainers within an Internet-mediated framework of fitness culture. The empirical material comes from a close examination of three strategically selected blogs. The result shows that some of the blogs clearly build upon what Connell calls emphasized femininity, as a means of legitimizing and constructing appropriate female fitness. In addition, there are also tendencies of sexualization in text and imagery present. As such, these self-representations are framed within a cultural history of body fitness dominated by stereotypical ways of perceiving masculinity and femininity. However, this does not capture the entire presentation of the self among the analyzed fitness bloggers. The blogs also point in the direction of ongoing negotiations and subversions of traditional gender norms. Among other things, they show how irony and humor are used as a means of questioning normative gender constructions while empowering female fitness and bodyliness.

  15. Nuclear fuel element end fitting

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jabsen, F.S.

    1980-01-01

    An invention is described whereby end fittings are formed from lattices of mutually perpendicular plates. At the plate intersections, sockets are secured to the end fittings in a manner that permits the longitudinal axes of each of the sockets to align with the respective lines of intersection of the plates. The sockets all protrude above one of the surfaces of the end fitting. Further, a detent is formed in the proturding sides of each of the sockets. Annular grooves are formed in each of the ends of the fuel rods that are to be mounted between the end fittings. The socket detents protrude into the respective annular grooves, thus engaging the grooves and retaining the fuel rods and end fittings in one integral structure. (auth)

  16. FITS Liberator: Image processing software

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindberg Christensen, Lars; Nielsen, Lars Holm; Nielsen, Kaspar K.; Johansen, Teis; Hurt, Robert; de Martin, David

    2012-06-01

    The ESA/ESO/NASA FITS Liberator makes it possible to process and edit astronomical science data in the FITS format to produce stunning images of the universe. Formerly a plugin for Adobe Photoshop, the current version of FITS Liberator is a stand-alone application and no longer requires Photoshop. This image processing software makes it possible to create color images using raw observations from a range of telescopes; the FITS Liberator continues to support the FITS and PDS formats, preferred by astronomers and planetary scientists respectively, which enables data to be processed from a wide range of telescopes and planetary probes, including ESO's Very Large Telescope, the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, ESA's XMM-Newton Telescope and Cassini-Huygens or Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.

  17. Fitness Doping and Body Management

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thualagant, Nicole

    This PhD thesis examines in a first paper the conceptualization of fitness doping and its current limitations. Based on a review of studies on bodywork and fitness doping it is emphasised that the definition of doping does not provide insights into bodywork of both men and women. Moreover......, it is argued that the social and a cultural context are missing in the many epidemiological studies on the prevalence of doping. The second paper explores the difficulties of implementing an anti-doping policy, which was originally formulated in an elite sport context, in a fitness context and more......-based fitness centres. Based on a survey in ten Danish club-based fitness centres and on narratives from semi-structured interviews, it is highlighted that the objectives of bodywork differ according to the users’ age and gender. Two different ways of investing in the body are explored in the paper, namely...

  18. The Effect of Parasitism and Interpopulation Hybridization on Aedes albopictus (Diptera: Culicidae) Fitness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tseng, Michelle

    2017-09-01

    Recent research in mosquito population genetics suggests that interpopulation hybridization has likely contributed to the rapid spread of the container-breeding mosquitoes. Here, I used laboratory experiments to investigate whether interpopulation Aedes (Stegomyia) albopictus (Skuse) F1 and F2 hybrids exhibit higher fitness than parental populations, and whether hybrid mosquito performance is related to infection by the coevolved protozoan parasite Ascogregarina taiwanensis (Lien and Levine). Overall, there were significant differences in development time, wing length, and survival between the two parental mosquito populations, but no difference in per capita growth rate r. Hybrid mosquitoes were generally intermediate in phenotype to the parentals, except that F2 females were significantly larger than the midparent average. In addition, As. taiwanensis parasites produced fewest oocysts when they were reared in hosts of hybrid origin. These data suggest that hybridization between previously isolated mosquito populations can result in slight increases in potential mosquito reproductive success, via increased hybrid body size, and via the temporary escape from coevolved parasites. These findings are significant because studies have shown that even slight hybrid vigor can have positive fitness consequences for population persistence. Although this was a laboratory experiment extending only to the F2 generation, many other invasive insects also carry coevolved parasites, and thus the patterns seen in this mosquito system may be broadly relevant. © The Authors 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  19. Systems Toxicology of Male Reproductive Development ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adverse trends in male reproductive health have been reported for increased rates of testicular germ cell tumor, low semen quality, cryptorchidism, and hypospadias. An association with prenatal environmental exposure has been inferred from human and animal studies underlying male reproductive developmental defects. The present study established the links between environmental chemicals, molecular targets, and adverse outcomes using U.S. EPA animal study (ToxRefDB) and high-throughput screening (ToxCast) databases. This systems-based approach revealed a phenotypic hierarchy across 63 chemicals and a pleiotropic in vitro bioactivity profile. Although estrogenic and anti-androgenic activities have been extensively studied in male reproductive developmental toxicity, the present study showed these receptor targets to be only a subset of the potential landscape of molecular targets. A variety of chemical (e.g. phthalates, conazoles, carbamates, and phenol compounds) and bioactivity (e.g. nuclear receptors, vascular remodeling proteins, and cytochrome-P450 reductases) clusters further suggested multiple pathways leading to the adverse outcomes. This points to the need for multi-scale systems models to predict whether the occurrence of one adverse outcome may predict the risk of another. Imbalances in androgen and estrogen signaling have been a general focus in male reproductive toxicology research. While a number of recent studies have demonstrated that both hormonal

  20. Test systems to identify reproductive toxicants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riecke, K; Stahlmann, R

    2000-09-01

    Experience with drugs and other xenobiotics indicates that both animal testing and epidemiological studies are necessary to provide adequate data for an estimation of risks that might be associated with exposure to a chemical substance. In this review, the pros and cons of test systems for reproductive toxicity are discussed. Usually, several studies are performed to cover the different phases of the reproductive cycle. In the preclinical development of drugs, the three so-called 'segment testing protocols' have been used for several decades now. More recently, new testing concepts have been accepted internationally which include more flexibility in implementation. Several examples of compounds with the potential for reproductive toxicity are presented in more detail in a discussion of some pitfalls of the tests for fertility (phthalates and fluoroquinolones), teratogenicity (acyclovir and protease inhibitors) and postnatal developmental toxicity (fluoroquinolones). In addition, important aspects of kinetics and metabolism as a prerequisite for a rational interpretation of results from toxicological studies are briefly discussed. In vitro assays are useful for supplementing the routinely used in vivo approaches or for studying an expected or defined effect, but they are not suitable for revealing an unknown effect of a chemical on the complex reproductive process.

  1. Landscape heterogeneity drives intra-population niche variation and reproduction in an arctic top predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    L'hérault, Vincent; Franke, Alastair; Lecomte, Nicolas; Alogut, Adam; Bêty, Joël

    2013-09-01

    While intra-population variability in resource use is ubiquitous, little is known of how this measure of niche diversity varies in space and its role in population dynamics. Here we examined how heterogeneous breeding environments can structure intra-population niche variation in both resource use and reproductive output. We investigated intra-population niche variation in the Arctic tundra ecosystem, studying peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus tundrius, White) breeding within a terrestrial-marine gradient near Rankin Inlet, Nunavut, Canada. Using stable isotope analysis, we found that intra-population niches varied at the individual level; we examined within-nest and among-nest variation, though only the latter varied along the terrestrial-marine gradient (i.e., increased among-nest variability among birds nesting within the marine environment, indicating higher degree of specialization). Terrestrial prey species (small herbivores and insectivores) were consumed by virtually all falcons. Falcons nesting within the marine environment made use of marine prey (sea birds), but depended heavily on terrestrial prey (up to 90% of the diet). Using 28-years of peregrine falcon nesting data, we found a positive relationship between the proportion of terrestrial habitat surrounding nest sites and annual nestling production, but no relationship with the likelihood of successfully rearing at least one nestling reaching 25 days old. Annually, successful inland breeders raised 0.47 more young on average compared to offshore breeders, which yields potential fitness consequences for this long-living species. The analyses of niche and reproductive success suggest a potential breeding cost for accessing distant terrestrial prey, perhaps due to additional traveling costs, for those individuals with marine nest site locations. Our study indicates how landscape heterogeneity can generate proximate (niche variation) and ultimate (reproduction) consequences on a population of generalist

  2. Fitness consequences of timing of migration and breeding in cormorants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Phillip Gienapp

    Full Text Available In most bird species timing of breeding affects reproductive success whereby early breeding is favoured. In migratory species migration time, especially arrival at the breeding grounds, and breeding time are expected to be correlated. Consequently, migration time should also have fitness consequences. However, in contrast to breeding time, evidence for fitness consequences of migration time is much more limited. Climate change has been shown to negatively affect the synchrony between trophic levels thereby leading to directional selection on timing but again direct evidence in avian migration time is scarce. We here analysed fitness consequences of migration and breeding time in great cormorants and tested whether climate change has led to increased selection on timing using a long-term data set from a breeding colony on the island of Vorsø (Denmark. Reproductive success, measured as number of fledglings, correlated with breeding time and arrival time at the colony and declined during the season. This seasonal decline became steeper during the study period for both migration and breeding time and was positively correlated to winter/spring climate, i.e. selection was stronger after warmer winters/springs. However, the increasing selection pressure on timing seems to be unrelated to climate change as the climatic variables that were related to selection strength did not increase during the study period. There is indirect evidence that phenology or abundances of preferred prey species have changed which could have altered selection on timing of migration and breeding.

  3. VARIATIONS IN REPRODUCTIVE TOXICANT IDENTIFICATION

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Simmons, F

    2008-05-13

    Reproductive toxicants are a very important class of compounds. They present unique hazards to those of child bearing ages, perform their 'dirty work' using a wide variety of mechanisms on a number of different organs, and are regulatorily important. Because of all of this, properly identifying reproductive toxicants is important, but fraught with difficulty. In this paper we will describe types or reproductive toxicants, their importance, and both mistakes and good practices that people who are not experts in reproductive toxicology may use in their attempts to identify them. Additionally, this paper will focus on chemical reproductive toxicants and will not address biological agents that could affect reproductive toxicity although many principles outlined here could be applied to that endeavor.

  4. Reproductive Medicine in Lizards.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knotek, Zdenek; Cermakova, Eva; Oliveri, Matteo

    2017-05-01

    Common reproductive problems in captive male lizards are hemipenile plugs in hemipenial sac, unilateral prolapse of hemipenis, or bilateral prolapse of hemipene. Although the orchiectomy is performed as a treatment for testicular disease, the effectiveness in reducing aggressive behavior is unclear. Female captive lizards suffer from cloacal prolapse, preovulatory follicular stasis, or dystocia. The veterinarian must differentiate between the disorders because the treatment differs. Mating, physical, or visual contact with the male stimulates ovulation and prevents preovulatory follicular stasis. Surgical intervention is usually required for dystocia. This article discusses selected procedures and use of ultrasonography and diagnostic endoscopy. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. The Mahabharata and reproductive endocrinology

    OpenAIRE

    Kalra, Bharti; Baruah, Manash P.; Kalra, Sanjay

    2016-01-01

    This communication approaches the Mahabharata through the prism of reproductive endocrinology. Descriptions of episodes related to reproduction are listed here, to provide fodder for the endocrinologically minded brain. The cases described here are perhaps, the first documented observations of fetal orgasm, pseudocyesis and assisted reproductive technology, including assisted insemination by donor, induction of ovulation, and in vitro fertilization as well as precocious growth and intersex. W...

  6. Reproductive endocrinology of vitamin D

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lorenzen, Mette; Boisen, Ida Marie; Mortensen, Li Juel

    2017-01-01

    Vitamin D is a versatile hormone with several functions beyond its well-established role in maintenance of skeletal health and calcium homeostasis. The effects of vitamin D are mediated by the vitamin D receptor, which is expressed together with the vitamin D metabolizing enzymes in the reproduct...... suffering from reproductive problems and abnormal endocrinology research addressing the role of vitamin D in reproductive endocrinology may be of clinical importance....

  7. Does the risk of sperm competition help explain cooperation between reproductive competitors? A study in the ocellated wrasse (Symphodus ocellatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stiver, Kelly A; Alonzo, Suzanne H

    2013-03-01

    Although cooperating individuals may gain benefits, they risk being cheated by their allies. Therefore, to understand the persistence of cooperation by mutual benefits, it is important to document both the potential benefits of cooperation and the risks of cheating. We experimentally examined evidence of cooperation in the ocellated wrasse (Symphodus ocellatus), a fish species with males that exercise three reproductive strategies: satellite and sneaker males attempt to parasitically spawn in the nests of nesting males. Nesting males have been hypothesized to tolerate satellites as a result of satellite aid in defense against sneaker males and help in courting females. Here, we provide evidence that cooperation between reproductive competitors may arise in response to sperm competition from other males. After we experimentally removed satellites, nesting males had more sneakers at their nest and experienced a higher rate of sneaking when they spawned (increased sperm competition risk). When we experimentally distracted nesting males to prevent their acting aggressively toward satellites, satellites spawned with females and ate eggs in the nest. Our results suggest that nesting males and satellites gain fitness benefits of reduced direct reproductive and sperm competition through cooperation. However, nesting males risk losing paternity, while satellites experience increased aggression and must invest in aggression themselves (i.e., they act aggressively toward sneakers).

  8. The validity and value of inclusive fitness theory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourke, Andrew F G

    2011-11-22

    Social evolution is a central topic in evolutionary biology, with the evolution of eusociality (societies with altruistic, non-reproductive helpers) representing a long-standing evolutionary conundrum. Recent critiques have questioned the validity of the leading theory for explaining social evolution and eusociality, namely inclusive fitness (kin selection) theory. I review recent and past literature to argue that these critiques do not succeed. Inclusive fitness theory has added fundamental insights to natural selection theory. These are the realization that selection on a gene for social behaviour depends on its effects on co-bearers, the explanation of social behaviours as unalike as altruism and selfishness using the same underlying parameters, and the explanation of within-group conflict in terms of non-coinciding inclusive fitness optima. A proposed alternative theory for eusocial evolution assumes mistakenly that workers' interests are subordinate to the queen's, contains no new elements and fails to make novel predictions. The haplodiploidy hypothesis has yet to be rigorously tested and positive relatedness within diploid eusocial societies supports inclusive fitness theory. The theory has made unique, falsifiable predictions that have been confirmed, and its evidence base is extensive and robust. Hence, inclusive fitness theory deserves to keep its position as the leading theory for social evolution.

  9. A comparison of wearable fitness devices.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaewkannate, Kanitthika; Kim, Soochan

    2016-05-24

    Wearable trackers can help motivate you during workouts and provide information about your daily routine or fitness in combination with your smartphone without requiring potentially disruptive manual calculations or records. This paper summarizes and compares wearable fitness devices, also called "fitness trackers" or "activity trackers." These devices are becoming increasingly popular in personal healthcare, motivating people to exercise more throughout the day without the need for lifestyle changes. The various choices in the market for wearable devices are also increasing, with customers searching for products that best suit their personal needs. Further, using a wearable device or fitness tracker can help people reach a fitness goal or finish line. Generally, companies display advertising for these kinds of products and depict them as beneficial, user friendly, and accurate. However, there are no objective research results to prove the veracity of their words. This research features subjective and objective experimental results, which reveal that some devices perform better than others. The four most popular wristband style wearable devices currently on the market (Withings Pulse, Misfit Shine, Jawbone Up24, and Fitbit Flex) are selected and compared. The accuracy of fitness tracking is one of the key components for fitness tracking, and some devices perform better than others. This research shows subjective and objective experimental results that are used to compare the accuracy of four wearable devices in conjunction with user friendliness and satisfaction of 7 real users. In addition, this research matches the opinions between reviewers on an Internet site and those of subjects when using the device. Withings Pulse is the most friendly and satisfactory from the users' viewpoint. It is the most accurate and repeatable for step and distance tracking, which is the most important measurement of fitness tracking, followed by Fitbit Flex, Jawbone Up24, and Misfit

  10. A comparison of wearable fitness devices

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kanitthika Kaewkannate

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Wearable trackers can help motivate you during workouts and provide information about your daily routine or fitness in combination with your smartphone without requiring potentially disruptive manual calculations or records. This paper summarizes and compares wearable fitness devices, also called “fitness trackers” or “activity trackers.” These devices are becoming increasingly popular in personal healthcare, motivating people to exercise more throughout the day without the need for lifestyle changes. The various choices in the market for wearable devices are also increasing, with customers searching for products that best suit their personal needs. Further, using a wearable device or fitness tracker can help people reach a fitness goal or finish line. Generally, companies display advertising for these kinds of products and depict them as beneficial, user friendly, and accurate. However, there are no objective research results to prove the veracity of their words. This research features subjective and objective experimental results, which reveal that some devices perform better than others. Methods The four most popular wristband style wearable devices currently on the market (Withings Pulse, Misfit Shine, Jawbone Up24, and Fitbit Flex are selected and compared. The accuracy of fitness tracking is one of the key components for fitness tracking, and some devices perform better than others. This research shows subjective and objective experimental results that are used to compare the accuracy of four wearable devices in conjunction with user friendliness and satisfaction of 7 real users. In addition, this research matches the opinions between reviewers on an Internet site and those of subjects when using the device. Results Withings Pulse is the most friendly and satisfactory from the users’ viewpoint. It is the most accurate and repeatable for step and distance tracking, which is the most important measurement of

  11. Fitness of crop-wild hybrid sunflower under competitive conditions: implications for crop-to-wild introgression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mercer, Kristin L; Emry, D Jason; Snow, Allison A; Kost, Matthew A; Pace, Brian A; Alexander, Helen M

    2014-01-01

    Understanding the likelihood and extent of introgression of novel alleles in hybrid zones requires comparison of lifetime fitness of parents and hybrid progeny. However, fitness differences among cross types can vary depending on biotic conditions, thereby influencing introgression patterns. Based on past work, we predicted that increased competition would enhance introgression between cultivated and wild sunflower (Helianthus annuus) by reducing fitness advantages of wild plants. To test this prediction, we established a factorial field experiment in Kansas, USA where we monitored the fitness of four cross types (Wild, F1, F2, and BCw hybrids) under different levels of interspecific and intraspecific competition. Intraspecific manipulations consisted both of density of competitors and of frequency of crop-wild hybrids. We recorded emergence of overwintered seeds, survival to reproduction, and numbers of seeds produced per reproductive plant. We also calculated two compound fitness measures: seeds produced per emerged seedling and seeds produced per planted seed. Cross type and intraspecific competition affected emergence and survival to reproduction, respectively. Further, cross type interacted with competitive treatments to influence all other fitness traits. More intense competition treatments, especially related to density of intraspecific competitors, repeatedly reduced the fitness advantage of wild plants when considering seeds produced per reproductive plant and per emerged seedling, and F2 plants often became indistinguishable from the wilds. Wild fitness remained superior when seedling emergence was also considered as part of fitness, but the fitness of F2 hybrids relative to wild plants more than quadrupled with the addition of interspecific competitors and high densities of intraspecific competitors. Meanwhile, contrary to prediction, lower hybrid frequency reduced wild fitness advantage. These results emphasize the importance of taking a full life cycle

  12. Fitness of crop-wild hybrid sunflower under competitive conditions: implications for crop-to-wild introgression.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristin L Mercer

    Full Text Available Understanding the likelihood and extent of introgression of novel alleles in hybrid zones requires comparison of lifetime fitness of parents and hybrid progeny. However, fitness differences among cross types can vary depending on biotic conditions, thereby influencing introgression patterns. Based on past work, we predicted that increased competition would enhance introgression between cultivated and wild sunflower (Helianthus annuus by reducing fitness advantages of wild plants. To test this prediction, we established a factorial field experiment in Kansas, USA where we monitored the fitness of four cross types (Wild, F1, F2, and BCw hybrids under different levels of interspecific and intraspecific competition. Intraspecific manipulations consisted both of density of competitors and of frequency of crop-wild hybrids. We recorded emergence of overwintered seeds, survival to reproduction, and numbers of seeds produced per reproductive plant. We also calculated two compound fitness measures: seeds produced per emerged seedling and seeds produced per planted seed. Cross type and intraspecific competition affected emergence and survival to reproduction, respectively. Further, cross type interacted with competitive treatments to influence all other fitness traits. More intense competition treatments, especially related to density of intraspecific competitors, repeatedly reduced the fitness advantage of wild plants when considering seeds produced per reproductive plant and per emerged seedling, and F2 plants often became indistinguishable from the wilds. Wild fitness remained superior when seedling emergence was also considered as part of fitness, but the fitness of F2 hybrids relative to wild plants more than quadrupled with the addition of interspecific competitors and high densities of intraspecific competitors. Meanwhile, contrary to prediction, lower hybrid frequency reduced wild fitness advantage. These results emphasize the importance of taking

  13. Fitness of Crop-Wild Hybrid Sunflower under Competitive Conditions: Implications for Crop-to-Wild Introgression

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mercer, Kristin L.; Emry, D. Jason; Snow, Allison A.; Kost, Matthew A.; Pace, Brian A.; Alexander, Helen M.

    2014-01-01

    Understanding the likelihood and extent of introgression of novel alleles in hybrid zones requires comparison of lifetime fitness of parents and hybrid progeny. However, fitness differences among cross types can vary depending on biotic conditions, thereby influencing introgression patterns. Based on past work, we predicted that increased competition would enhance introgression between cultivated and wild sunflower (Helianthus annuus) by reducing fitness advantages of wild plants. To test this prediction, we established a factorial field experiment in Kansas, USA where we monitored the fitness of four cross types (Wild, F1, F2, and BCw hybrids) under different levels of interspecific and intraspecific competition. Intraspecific manipulations consisted both of density of competitors and of frequency of crop-wild hybrids. We recorded emergence of overwintered seeds, survival to reproduction, and numbers of seeds produced per reproductive plant. We also calculated two compound fitness measures: seeds produced per emerged seedling and seeds produced per planted seed. Cross type and intraspecific competition affected emergence and survival to reproduction, respectively. Further, cross type interacted with competitive treatments to influence all other fitness traits. More intense competition treatments, especially related to density of intraspecific competitors, repeatedly reduced the fitness advantage of wild plants when considering seeds produced per reproductive plant and per emerged seedling, and F2 plants often became indistinguishable from the wilds. Wild fitness remained superior when seedling emergence was also considered as part of fitness, but the fitness of F2 hybrids relative to wild plants more than quadrupled with the addition of interspecific competitors and high densities of intraspecific competitors. Meanwhile, contrary to prediction, lower hybrid frequency reduced wild fitness advantage. These results emphasize the importance of taking a full life cycle

  14. Cost of reproduction in a long-lived bird: incubation effort reduces immune function and future reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanssen, Sveinn Are; Hasselquist, Dennis; Folstad, Ivar; Erikstad, Kjell Einar

    2005-05-22

    Life-history theory predicts that increased current reproductive effort should lead to a fitness cost. This cost of reproduction may be observed as reduced survival or future reproduction, and may be caused by temporal suppression of immune function in stressed or hard-working individuals. In birds, consideration of the costs of incubating eggs has largely been neglected in favour of the costs of brood rearing. We manipulated incubation demand in two breeding seasons (2000 and 2001) in female common eiders (Somateria mollissima) by creating clutches of three and six eggs (natural range 3-6 eggs). The common eider is a long-lived sea-duck where females do not eat during the incubation period. Mass loss increased and immune function (lymphocyte levels and specific antibody response to the non-pathogenic antigens diphtheria and tetanus toxoid) was reduced in females incubating large clutches. The increased incubation effort among females assigned to large incubation demand did not lead to adverse effects on current reproduction or return rate in the next breeding season. However, large incubation demand resulted in long-term fitness costs through reduced fecundity the year after manipulation. Our data show that in eiders, a long-lived species, the cost of high incubation demand is paid in the currency of reduced future fecundity, possibly mediated by reduced immune function.

  15. Dominance as adaptive stressing and ranking of males, serving to allocate reproduction by differential self-suppressed fertility: towards a fully biological understanding of social systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moxon, Steve

    2009-07-01

    Dominance is a biological concept of an asymmetric 'power' relationship between (any pair of) individuals, as a result of previous encounters with others biasing likelihood of contesting. That this requires dedicated neural structure shows that dominance is adaptive; and it is usually thought that fitness is increased through dominance (hierarchy) minimising mutually unproductive contest over resources, and/or determining access to or control over resources. But highly inconsistent data indicates that this operational definition is too wide, and given clear evidence that dominance is invariably same-sex, it would seem instead to function primarily to allocate reproduction. Dominance contest exposes individual differences in metabolic vigor especially, but also in various other, including sophisticated attributes; and by a self-organising process there is ranking of same-sex individuals in a hierarchy. But this achieves nothing in itself without an integral mechanism of corresponding individual variable self-suppression of the physiology re reproduction--and mate choice with rank as the criteria. Reproductive suppression would appear to vary along a continuum, from in some species (most 'cooperative breeders') a 100% reproductive skew with total suppression of all individuals bar the sole breeder to, in most others, a gradient down the length of the dominance hierarchy. The mechanism in most species is directly either hormonal or pheromonal, on top of an indirect consequence of the stress caused by relatively low rank. Dominance would seem to have evolved as a major instrument of the proposed 'genetic filter' function of the male, whereby in effect accumulated deleterious genetic material is 'quarantined' in the male half of the lineage from where it is purged, so as to keep this source of reproductive logjam away from females, thereby to avoid amplifying the problem of the female being necessarily the limiting factor in reproduction. The theory makes predictions

  16. Herbivory eliminates fitness costs of mutualism exploiters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simonsen, Anna K; Stinchcombe, John R

    2014-04-01

    A common empirical observation in mutualistic interactions is the persistence of variation in partner quality and, in particular, the persistence of exploitative phenotypes. For mutualisms between hosts and symbionts, most mutualism theory assumes that exploiters always impose fitness costs on their host. We exposed legume hosts to mutualistic (nitrogen-fixing) and exploitative (non-nitrogen-fixing) symbiotic rhizobia in field conditions, and manipulated the presence or absence of insect herbivory to determine if the costly fitness effects of exploitative rhizobia are context-dependent. Exploitative rhizobia predictably reduced host fitness when herbivores were excluded. However, insects caused greater damage on hosts associating with mutualistic rhizobia, as a consequence of feeding preferences related to leaf nitrogen content, resulting in the elimination of fitness costs imposed on hosts by exploitative rhizobia. Our experiment shows that herbivory is potentially an important factor in influencing the evolutionary dynamic between legumes and rhizobia. Partner choice and host sanctioning are theoretically predicted to stabilize mutualisms by reducing the frequency of exploitative symbionts. We argue that herbivore pressure may actually weaken selection on choice and sanction mechanisms, thus providing one explanation of why host-based discrimination mechanisms may not be completely effective in eliminating nonbeneficial partners. © 2014 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2014 New Phytologist Trust.

  17. Transgenderism and reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    TʼSjoen, Guy; Van Caenegem, Eva; Wierckx, Katrien

    2013-12-01

    The development of new reproductive medicine techniques creates opportunities for preserving fertility in transgender persons. Before, losing fertility was accepted as the price to pay for transitioning. The desire for children is present in many trans persons, as in the general population. Ethical concerns are sometimes raised against the preservation of fertility; however, the only unique aspect of this group is the gender transition of one of the parents. All other elements such as same sex parenthood, use of donor gametes, social stigma, etc., can be found in other groups of parents. Not all reproductive options for all trans persons are equal because not only the gametes are of importance, but also the sex of the (future) partner. In trans women, the best option to preserve gametes is cryopreservation of sperm by preference initiated before starting hormonal therapy. In trans men, donor sperm is most often used, but in theory, there are three options available to preserve fertility: oocyte banking, embryo banking and banking of ovarian tissue. Fertility is possible for both trans men and women, but it requires timely cryopreservation of gametes or stopping cross-sex hormones and possible fertility treatments which are costly and may be unpleasant. Centers should elucidate their policy and inform trans persons on the possibilities and limitations.

  18. Epigenetics of reproductive infertility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Das, Laxmidhar; Parbin, Sabnam; Pradhan, Nibedita; Kausar, Chahat; Patra, Samir K

    2017-06-01

    Infertility is a complex pathophysiological condition. It may caused by specific or multiple physical and physiological factors, including abnormalities in homeostasis, hormonal imbalances and genetic alterations. In recent times various studies implicated that, aberrant epigenetic mechanisms are associated with reproductive infertility. There might be transgenerational effects associated with epigenetic modifications of gametes and studies suggest the importance of alterations in epigenetic modification at early and late stages of gametogenesis. To determine the causes of infertility it is necessary to understand the altered epigenetic modifications of associated gene and mechanisms involved therein. This review is devoted to elucidate the recent mechanistic advances in regulation of genes by epigenetic modification and emphasizes their possible role related to reproductive infertility. It includes environmental, nutritional, hormonal and physiological factors and influence of internal structural architecture of chromatin nucleosomes affecting DNA and histone modifications in both male and female gametes, early embryogenesis and offspring. Finally, we would like to emphasize that research on human infertility by gene knock out of epigenetic modifiers genes must be relied upon animal models.

  19. Advanced reproductive age and fertility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Kimberly; Case, Allison

    2011-11-01

    To improve awareness of the natural age-related decline in female and male fertility with respect to natural fertility and assisted reproductive technologies (ART) and provide recommendations for their management, and to review investigations in the assessment of ovarian aging. This guideline reviews options for the assessment of ovarian reserve and fertility treatments using ART with women of advanced reproductive age presenting with infertility. The outcomes measured are the predictive value of ovarian reserve testing and pregnancy rates with natural and assisted fertility. Published literature was retrieved through searches of PubMed or Medline, CINAHL, and The Cochrane Library in June 2010, using appropriate key words (ovarian aging, ovarian reserve, advanced maternal age, advanced paternal age, ART). Results were restricted to systematic reviews, randomized controlled trials/controlled clinical trials, and observational studies. There were no date or language restrictions. Searches were updated on a regular basis and incorporated into the guideline to December 2010. The quality of evidence was rated using the criteria described in the Report of the Canadian Task Force on Preventive Health Care. Recommendations for practice were ranked according to the method described in that report (Table). Primary and specialist health care providers and women will be better informed about ovarian aging and the age-related decline in natural fertility and about options for assisted reproductive technology. 1. Women in their 20s and 30s should be counselled about the age-related risk of infertility when other reproductive health issues, such as sexual health or contraception, are addressed as part of their primary well-woman care. Reproductive-age women should be aware that natural fertility and assisted reproductive technology success (except with egg donation) is significantly lower for women in their late 30s and 40s. (II-2A) 2. Because of the decline in fertility and the

  20. Endocrine disruptors in female reproductive tract development and carcinogenesis

    OpenAIRE

    Ma, Liang

    2009-01-01

    Growing concerns over endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) and their effects on human fetal development and adult health have promoted research into the underlying molecular mechanisms of endocrine disruption. Gene targeting technology has allowed insight into the genetic pathways governing reproductive tract development and how exposure to EDCs during a critical developmental window can alter reproductive tract development, potentially forming the basis for adult diseases. This review prima...