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Ecophysiological differentiation between life stages in filmy ferns (Hymenophyllaceae).

J Plant Res 2021 Jun 12. Epub 2021 Jun 12.

Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, 02138, USA.

Desiccation tolerance was a key trait that allowed plants to colonize land. However, little is known about the transition from desiccation tolerant non-vascular plants to desiccation sensitive vascular ones. Filmy ferns (Hymenophyllaceae) represent a useful system to investigate how water-stress strategies differ between non-vascular and vascular stages within a single organism because they have vascularized sporophytes and nonvascular gametophytes that are each capable of varying degrees of desiccation tolerance. Read More

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Multilocus phylogenies reveal three new truffle-like taxa and the traces of interspecific hybridization in Octaviania (Boletaceae, Boletales).

IMA Fungus 2021 Jun 11;12(1):14. Epub 2021 Jun 11.

Department of Plant Pathology, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida, 32611-0680, USA.

Among many convergently evolved sequestrate fungal genera in Boletaceae (Boletales, Basidiomycota), the genus Octaviania is the most diverse. We recently collected many specimens of Octaviania subg. Octaviania, including several undescribed taxa, from Japan and the Americas. Read More

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Association between vaginal microbiota and risk of early pregnancy miscarriage.

Comp Immunol Microbiol Infect Dis 2021 May 10;77:101669. Epub 2021 May 10.

Shanghai Key Laboratory of Embryo Original Diseases, International Peace Maternity and Child Health Hospital, School of Medicine, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai, 200030, China. Electronic address:

Approximately 15 % of clinically recognized pregnancies end in miscarriage. To explore the vaginal microbiota profile in women diagnosed with early pregnancy miscarriage (including missed miscarriage [M] or empty-sac miscarriage [E]), the microbial community structure in vaginal fluid was evaluated by Illumina MiSeq sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene V4 region and compared with that in women with normal pregnancy (P). Taxa identified in samples from the P, E, and M groups formed distinct clusters. Read More

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Legume Consumption and Gut Microbiome in Elderly Chinese Men and Women.

J Nutr 2021 Jun 10. Epub 2021 Jun 10.

Division of Epidemiology, Department of Medicine, Vanderbilt Epidemiology Center, Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN, USA.

Background: Legumes, important components of a healthy diet, may exert their health benefits through the influence of the gut microbiome. However, this hypothesis has not been well investigated.

Objective: This study aimed to examine the associations between long-term legume consumption and the gut microbiome among elderly Chinese. Read More

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Interactions between and the Gastric Microbiome: Impact on Gastric Homeostasis and Disease.

Curr Opin Physiol 2021 Jun 24;21:57-64. Epub 2021 Apr 24.

Department of Microbiology and Cell Biology, Montana State University, Bozeman, MT 59717.

Like many seemingly inhospitable environments on our planet, the highly acidic human stomach harbors a diverse bacterial microflora. The best-known member of the human gastric flora, , causes a number of gastric diseases, including peptic ulcer disease and gastric adenocarcinoma. In the absence of infection, the gastric microbiota displays some features similar to the oral cavity with Firmicutes the most common phylum, followed by Proteobacteria and Bacteroidetes. Read More

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Detection and molecular characteristics of Pyelosomum cochlear (Digenea: Pronocephalidae) in the urinary bladder of the green sea turtle (Chelonia mydas) in the Northwest Pacific Ocean.

Infect Genet Evol 2021 Jun 7:104962. Epub 2021 Jun 7.

Laboratory of Veterinary Parasitology, Faculty of Agriculture, Iwate University, 3-18-8 Ueda, Morioka 020-8550, Japan. Electronic address:

The genus Pyelosomum consists of parasitic flukes occurring primarily in marine turtles; Pyelosomum cochlear Looss 1899 is the only species of this genus that parasitizes the urinary bladder. In this study, we detected flukes in the urinary bladders of 20 of 88 green sea turtles (Chelonia mydas) harvested in the Ogasawara Islands, in the Northwest Pacific Ocean. We identified the flukes as P. Read More

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Fifty million years of beetle evolution along the Antarctic Polar Front.

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2021 Jun;118(24)

Securing Antarctica's Environmental Future, School of Biological Sciences, Monash University, Clayton, VIC 3800, Australia.

Global cooling and glacial-interglacial cycles since Antarctica's isolation have been responsible for the diversification of the region's marine fauna. By contrast, these same Earth system processes are thought to have played little role terrestrially, other than driving widespread extinctions. Here, we show that on islands along the Antarctic Polar Front, paleoclimatic processes have been key to diversification of one of the world's most geographically isolated and unique groups of herbivorous beetles-Ectemnorhinini weevils. Read More

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Early amphibians evolved distinct vertebrae for habitat invasions.

PLoS One 2021 9;16(6):e0251983. Epub 2021 Jun 9.

Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, United States of America.

Living tetrapods owe their existence to a critical moment 360-340 million years ago when their ancestors walked on land. Vertebrae are central to locomotion, yet systematic testing of correlations between vertebral form and terrestriality and subsequent reinvasions of aquatic habitats is lacking, obscuring our understanding of movement capabilities in early tetrapods. Here, we quantified vertebral shape across a diverse group of Paleozoic amphibians (Temnospondyli) encompassing different habitats and nearly the full range of early tetrapod vertebral shapes. Read More

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Limited Bacterial Removal in Full-Scale Stormwater Biofilters as Evidenced by Community Sequencing Analysis.

Environ Sci Technol 2021 Jun 9. Epub 2021 Jun 9.

Bren School of Environmental Science & Management, University of California, Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, California 93106, United States.

In urban areas, untreated stormwater runoff can pollute downstream surface waters. To intercept and treat runoff, low-impact or "green infrastructure" approaches such as using biofilters are adopted. Yet, actual biofilter pollutant removal is poorly understood; removal is often studied in laboratory columns, with variable removal of viable and culturable microbial cell numbers including pathogens. Read More

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Exploring DNA in biochemistry lab courses: DNA barcoding and phylogenetic analysis.

Biochem Mol Biol Educ 2021 Jun 7. Epub 2021 Jun 7.

School of Natural Sciences, Biology, Kean University, New Jersey, USA.

DNA structure has been leveraged in a variety of facets that allow scientists to perform a range of assays, including ones for identification of species, establishing evolutionary relationships between taxa, or even identifying individuals. Here, we present a DNA barcoding method as practical, hands-on approach that connects several experimental techniques in one sequence to teach the principles behind DNA isolation, purification, PCR, sequencing, and phylogeny analysis. Our set of exercises is designed for a teaching university laboratory setting. Read More

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Effect of Taro Starch, Beet Juice, Probiotic, and/or Psicose on Gut Microbiota in a Type 2 Diabetic Rat Model: A Pilot Study.

J Nutr Metab 2021 20;2021:1825209. Epub 2021 May 20.

Maastricht University-Campus Venlo, Centre for Healthy Eating & Food Innovation (HEFI), Villafloraweg 1, 5928 SZ Venlo, Netherlands.

. The gut microbiota has been shown to be involved in the development and severity of type 2 diabetes (T2D). The aim of the present study was to test the effect of potential functional food ingredients, alone or in combination, on the gut microbiota composition in diabetic rats in a pilot study of 1 week of feeding. Read More

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Vocal universals and geographic variations in the acoustic repertoire of the common bottlenose dolphin.

Sci Rep 2021 Jun 4;11(1):11847. Epub 2021 Jun 4.

MARE - Marine and Environmental Sciences Centre, ISPA - Instituto Universitário, Rua Jardim do Tabaco, 34, 1149-041, Lisboa, Portugal.

Acoustical geographic variation is common in widely distributed species and it is already described for several taxa, at various scales. In cetaceans, intraspecific variation in acoustic repertoires has been linked to ecological factors, geographical barriers, and social processes. For the common bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus), studies on acoustic variability are scarce, focus on a single signal type-whistles and on the influence of environmental variables. Read More

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An early Devonian flora from the Baviaanskloof Formation (Table Mountain Group) of South Africa.

Sci Rep 2021 Jun 4;11(1):11859. Epub 2021 Jun 4.

Evolution and Diversity Dynamics Laboratory (EDDy Lab), Geology Department, Liège University, Liège, Belgium.

Newly discovered early plant bearing lenses from the Baviaanskloof Formation at Impofu Dam in the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa provide evidence for one of the most diverse Late Silurian to Early Devonian assemblages known to date. This work represents the first account of this flora. Fifteen taxa are presented, including eleven diagnosed to existing genera, of which eight may be reasonably diagnosed to existing species including several species of the genus Cooksonia. Read More

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Environmental risk assessment and bioaccumulation of pharmaceuticals in a large urbanized estuary.

Sci Total Environ 2021 Aug 19;783:147021. Epub 2021 Apr 19.

Southern Seas Ecology Laboratories, School of Biological Sciences, The University of Adelaide, South Australia 5005, Australia.

We screened for the presence of 66 different pharmaceutical residues in surface waters and in multiple invertebrate and fish species of the Tejo estuary to produce an environmental risk assessment of individual pharmaceuticals and their mixtures, as well as evaluate the bioaccumulation of pharmaceuticals in one of Europe's largest estuarine systems. Sixteen pharmaceutical residues, from seven therapeutic classes, were detected in estuarine waters, with environmental mixture concentrations ranging from 42 to 1762 ng/L. Environmental risk assessment via the determination of risk quotients, demonstrated high ecological risk for the antibiotic amoxicillin and angiotensin II receptor blockers irbesartan and losartan. Read More

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Locomotory behaviour of early tetrapods from Blue Beach, Nova Scotia, revealed by novel microanatomical analysis.

R Soc Open Sci 2021 May 26;8(5):210281. Epub 2021 May 26.

McCaig Institute for Bone and Joint Health, University of Calgary, 3330 Hospital Drive NW, Calgary, Alberta, Canada T2N 4N1.

Evidence for terrestriality in early tetrapods is fundamentally contradictory. Fossil trackways attributed to early terrestrial tetrapods long predate the first body fossils from the Late Devonian. However, the Devonian body fossils demonstrate an obligatorily aquatic lifestyle. Read More

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A new species of (Plecoptera, Nemouridae) and supplementary description of from the Nanling Mountains of southern China.

Zookeys 2021 20;1039:109-122. Epub 2021 May 20.

School of Horticulture and Plant Protection & Institute of Applied Entomology, Yangzhou University, Yangzhou 225009, China Yangzhou University Yangzhou China.

Two species of Nemouridae are described and illustrated from the Nanling Mountains of southern China, including a new species, from Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, and a new regional record species, Li & Yang, 2006 from Hunan Province. The morphological characteristics of the new species are compared to related taxa and the new images with supplementary description of are also provided. Read More

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Integrating multiple chemical tracers to elucidate the diet and habitat of Cookiecutter Sharks.

Sci Rep 2021 Jun 3;11(1):11809. Epub 2021 Jun 3.

Monterey Bay Aquarium, Monterey, CA, USA.

The Cookiecutter shark (Isistius brasiliensis) is an ectoparasitic, mesopelagic shark that is known for removing plugs of tissue from larger prey, including teleosts, chondrichthyans, cephalopods, and marine mammals. Although this species is widely distributed throughout the world's tropical and subtropical oceanic waters, like many deep-water species, it remains very poorly understood due to its mesopelagic distribution. We used a suite of biochemical tracers, including stable isotope analysis (SIA), fatty acid analysis (FAA), and environmental DNA (eDNA), to investigate the trophic ecology of this species in the Central Pacific around Hawaii. Read More

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Host-multiparasite interactions in amphibians: a review.

Parasit Vectors 2021 Jun 3;14(1):296. Epub 2021 Jun 3.

Lendület Evolutionary Ecology Research Group, Plant Protection Institute, Centre for Agricultural Research, Eötvös Loránd Research Network, Herman Ottó út 15, Budapest, 1022, Hungary.

Parasites, including viruses, bacteria, fungi, protists, helminths, and arthropods, are ubiquitous in the animal kingdom. Consequently, hosts are frequently infected with more than one parasite species simultaneously. The assessment of such co-infections is of fundamental importance for disease ecology, but relevant studies involving non-domesticated animals have remained scarce. Read More

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External and internal head anatomy of (Trichoptera, Limnephilidae).

Entomol Austriaca 2021 Mar;28:119-131

Department für Funktionelle und Evolutionäre Ökologie, Universität Wien, Althanstraße 14, 1090 Wien, Österreich.

External And Internal Head Anatomy Of Drusus Monticola Trichoptera Limnephilidae: Caddisflies have evolved to a staggering diversity, and their larvae inhabit a wide range of different habitats. Also, the larvae differ in their (feeding) ecology, and hydrological niche preference. Consequently, groups differ in their external morphology, a fact that allows to identify many taxa to species-level in the larval stage. Read More

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Compositional Data Analysis of Periodontal Disease Microbial Communities.

Front Microbiol 2021 17;12:617949. Epub 2021 May 17.

Department of Biology, San Diego State University, San Diego, CA, United States.

Periodontal disease (PD) is a chronic, progressive polymicrobial disease that induces a strong host immune response. Culture-independent methods, such as next-generation sequencing (NGS) of bacteria 16S amplicon and shotgun metagenomic libraries, have greatly expanded our understanding of PD biodiversity, identified novel PD microbial associations, and shown that PD biodiversity increases with pocket depth. NGS studies have also found PD communities to be highly host-specific in terms of both biodiversity and the response of microbial communities to periodontal treatment. Read More

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Holobiont nitrogen control and its potential for eutrophication resistance in an obligate photosymbiotic jellyfish.

Microbiome 2021 Jun 2;9(1):127. Epub 2021 Jun 2.

The Swire Institute of Marine Science and School of Biological Sciences, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, Hong Kong, SAR of China.

Background: Marine holobionts depend on microbial members for health and nutrient cycling. This is particularly evident in cnidarian-algae symbioses that facilitate energy and nutrient acquisition. However, this partnership is highly sensitive to environmental change-including eutrophication-that causes dysbiosis and contributes to global coral reef decline. Read More

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A new Oligocene-Miocene tree from Panama and historical Anacardium migration patterns.

PLoS One 2021 2;16(6):e0250721. Epub 2021 Jun 2.

Instituto de Biología, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Ciudad de México, Mexico.

Migration of Boreotropical megathermal taxa during the Oligocene and Miocene played a key role in assembling diversity in tropical regions. Despite scattered fossil reports, the cashew genus Anacardium offers an excellent example of such migration. The fossil woods described here come from localities in Veraguas, Panama mapped as Oligocene-Miocene. Read More

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Culturable Seed Microbiota of .

Pathogens 2021 May 24;10(6). Epub 2021 May 24.

Department of Botany and Plant Pathology, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331, USA.

Plants harbor a diverse community of microbes, whose interactions with their host and each other can influence plant health and fitness. While microbiota in plant vegetative tissues has been extensively studied, less is known about members of the seed microbiota. We used culture-based surveys to identify bacteria and fungi found in the seeds of the model tree, , collected from different sites. Read More

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Species Diversity in the Leafhopper Genus Lewis (Hemiptera: Cicadellidae: Iassinae) from Qinling Mountain in Shaanxi.

Insects 2021 May 26;12(6). Epub 2021 May 26.

Key Laboratory of Plant Protection Resources and Pest Integrated Management of the Ministry of Education, College of Plant Protection, Northwest A&F University, Xianyang 712100, China.

The genus Lewis is the third largest leafhopper genus in the world, with its greatest diversity in the Oriental region. Here, nine species of including one new species, are recorded from Shaanxi Province, China, for the first time: (Turton), Cai and Shen, Hu and Dai sp. nov. Read More

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Ruminal Protozoal Populations of Angus Steers Differing in Feed Efficiency.

Animals (Basel) 2021 May 27;11(6). Epub 2021 May 27.

Department of Animal Science, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37996, USA.

Feed accounts for as much as 70% of beef production costs, and improvement of the efficiency with which animals convert feed to product has the potential to have substantial financial impact on the beef industry. The rumen microbiome plays a key role in determining feed efficiency; however, previous studies of rumen microbiota have not focused on protozoal communities despite the estimation that these organisms represent approximately 50% of rumen content biomass. Protozoal communities participate in the regulation of bacterial populations and nitrogen cycling-key aspects of microbiome dynamics. Read More

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Increasing the Awareness of Animal Welfare Science in Marine Mammal Conservation: Addressing Language, Translation and Reception Issues.

Animals (Basel) 2021 May 28;11(6). Epub 2021 May 28.

Cetacean Ecology Research Group, School of Natural and Computational Sciences, Massey University, Auckland 0745, New Zealand.

Integrating welfare principles into conservation strategy is an emerging synthesis that encourages consideration of individual animals' quality of life in research, policies and law. However, these principles have gained limited traction in marine compared to terrestrial animal conservation. This manuscript investigates several factors that may be contributing to this disparity. Read More

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Venom and Social Behavior: The Potential of Using Spiders to Evaluate the Evolution of Sociality under High Risk.

Toxins (Basel) 2021 May 28;13(6). Epub 2021 May 28.

Department of Biology, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK 73019, USA.

Risks of sociality, including competition and conspecific aggression, are particularly pronounced in venomous invertebrates such as arachnids. Spiders show a wide range of sociality, with differing levels of cannibalism and other types of social aggression. To have the greatest chance of surviving interactions with conspecifics, spiders must learn to assess and respond to risk. Read More

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Deep Learning Methods for Improving Pollen Monitoring.

Sensors (Basel) 2021 May 19;21(10). Epub 2021 May 19.

Institute of Mathematics, Maria Curie-Sklodowska University, pl. Marii Curie-Skłodowskiej 1, 20-031 Lublin, Poland.

The risk of pollen-induced allergies can be determined and predicted based on data derived from pollen monitoring. Hirst-type samplers are sensors that allow airborne pollen grains to be detected and their number to be determined. Airborne pollen grains are deposited on adhesive-coated tape, and slides are then prepared, which require further analysis by specialized personnel. Read More

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Parasites, Drugs and Captivity: -Microbiome Associations in Captive Water Voles.

Biology (Basel) 2021 May 22;10(6). Epub 2021 May 22.

Laboratory of Molecular and Evolutionary Parasitology, RAPID Group, School of Biosciences, University of Kent, Canterbury CT2 7NJ, UK.

(1) Background: is a microbial eukaryote inhabiting the gastrointestinal tract of a broad range of animals including humans. Several studies have shown that the organism is associated with specific microbial profiles and bacterial taxa that have been deemed beneficial to intestinal and overall health. Nonetheless, these studies are focused almost exclusively on humans, while there is no similar information on other animals. Read More

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Duvernoy's Gland Transcriptomics of the Plains Black-Headed Snake, (Squamata, Colubridae): Unearthing the Venom of Small Rear-Fanged Snakes.

Toxins (Basel) 2021 May 6;13(5). Epub 2021 May 6.

Department of Biological Sciences, Clemson University, Clemson, SC 29634, USA.

The venoms of small rear-fanged snakes (RFS) remain largely unexplored, despite increased recognition of their importance in understanding venom evolution more broadly. Sequencing the transcriptome of venom-producing glands has greatly increased the ability of researchers to examine and characterize the toxin repertoire of small taxa with low venom yields. Here, we use RNA-seq to characterize the Duvernoy's gland transcriptome of the Plains Black-headed Snake, , a small, semi-fossorial colubrid that feeds on a variety of potentially dangerous arthropods including centipedes and spiders. Read More

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