Navigation Links
CCNY, CSHL biologists find birdsong of isolates reverts to norm over several generations
Date:5/3/2009

AUDIO: This recording demonstrates the progression from isolate song to "wild-type " song in two tutoring lineages and also in the isolate colony.

Click here for more information.

NEW YORK, May 3, 2009 In an experiment that points to a role for genetics in the development of culture, biologists at The City College of New York (CCNY) and Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (CSHL) have discovered that zebra finches raised in isolation will, over several generations, produce a song similar to that sung by the species in the wild.

According to Dr. Olga Fehr, who conducted the experiment for her dissertation at CCNY, first generation male zebra finches raised in isolation produced an unstructured, often abnormal-sounding song that was quite different from the "wild-type" song. These birds were paired in a "tutor-pupil" relationship with a new generation of zebra finches that imitated their tutors' songs, but changed certain characteristics. The alterations accumulated over generations. By the fourth generation the song had evolved toward the "wild-type" song," Dr. Fehr and colleagues report in the May 6 edition of Nature.

"We were surprised the song reverted back to the "wild-type" song so fast," she said.

"Culture appears to be encoded in the birds. It just needed a few generations to emerge," said Dr. Ofer Tchernichovski, CCNY Professor of Biology and Dr. Fehr's thesis adviser. He noted that the same pattern of evolution in the song occurred whether the subsequent generations of male birds were raised among female birds, who do not sing, and siblings in a colony setting or just among isolate males one-on-one.

A similar phenomenon has been observed among deaf children in Nicaragua. There, children developed a rudimentary sign language in the home that spontaneously evolved into a more sophisticated sign language when they were placed in a school with other deaf children.

Dr. Fehr concluded the experiment "identified some encoded traits of culture." This finding could be used to explain why different species develop different song cultures," Professor Tchernichovski added.

Future research could show whether "changes in gene expression, neuronal reorganization or neurogenesis associated with song development show orderly multigenerational progression during the evolution of song culture."


'/>"/>

Contact: Ellis Simon
esimon@optonline.net
212-650-6460
City College of New York
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. The American Society of Plant Biologists announces 2007 awards
2. Biologists expose hidden costs of firefly flashes
3. Tufts University biologists link Huntingtons disease to health benefits in young
4. UD plant biologists uncover top wetland plants hidden weapon
5. Evolution is deterministic, not random, biologists conclude from multi-species study
6. Biologists find unusual plant gene: abstinence by mutual consent
7. Ant parasite turns host into ripe red berry, biologists discover
8. Cell biologists announce child-care grants for scientist-parents at annual meeting
9. Biologists surprised to find parochial bacterial viruses
10. Biologists at UC San Diego identify key protein in cells self-eating function
11. Biologists are from Mars, chemists are from Venus?
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/23/2017)... first robotic gym for the rehabilitation and functional motor sense evaluation of ... Italy . The first 30 robots will be available from June ... . The technology was developed and patented at the IIT laboratories and ... thanks to a 10 million euro investment from entrepreneur Sergio Dompè. ... ...
(Date:5/6/2017)... , May 5, 2017 RAM ... announced a new breakthrough in biometric authentication based ... quantum mechanical properties to perform biometric authentication. These new ... semiconductor material created by Ram Group and its ... entertainment, transportation, supply chains and security. Ram Group ...
(Date:4/18/2017)... 18, 2017  Socionext Inc., a global expert in SoC-based imaging ... server, the M820, which features the company,s hybrid codec technology. A ... Tera Probe, Inc., will be showcased during the upcoming Medtec Japan ... at the Las Vegas Convention Center April ... Click here for ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... Market with the addition of its newest module, US Hemostats & Sealants. , ... thrombin hemostats, absorbable hemostats, fibrin sealants, synthetic sealants and biologic sealants used in ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... , ... October 12, 2017 ... ... has launched Rosalind™, the first-ever genomics analysis platform specifically designed for life ... Named in honor of pioneering researcher Rosalind Franklin, who made a major ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... ... October 11, 2017 , ... The CRISPR-Cas9 ... overexpression experiments and avoiding the use of exogenous expression plasmids. The simplicity of ... performing systematic gain-of-function studies. , This complement to loss-of-function studies, such as ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... ... 11, 2017 , ... ComplianceOnline’s Medical Device Summit is back for its 4th ... in San Francisco, CA. The Summit brings together current and former FDA office bearers, ... and government officials from around the world to address key issues in device compliance, ...
Breaking Biology Technology: