Navigation Links
Fish of Antarctica threatened by climate change
Date:2/14/2012

A Yale-led study of the evolutionary history of Antarctic fish and their "anti-freeze" proteins illustrates how tens of millions of years ago a lineage of fish adapted to newly formed polar conditions and how today they are endangered by a rapid rise in ocean temperatures.

"A rise of 2 degrees centigrade of water temperature will likely have a devastating impact on this Antarctic fish lineage, which is so well adapted to water at freezing temperatures," said Thomas Near, associate professor of ecology and evolutionary biology and lead author of the study published online the week of Feb. 13 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The successful origin and diversification into 100 species of fish, collectively called notothenioids, is a textbook case of how evolution operates. A period of rapid cooling led to mass extinction of fish acclimated to a warmer Southern Ocean. The acquisition of so-called antifreeze glycoproteins enabled notothenioids to survive in seas with frigid temperatures. As they adapted to vacant ecological niches, new species of notothenioids arose and contributed to the rich biodiversity of marine life found today in the waters of Antarctica.

Notothenioids account for the bulk of the fish diversity and are a major food source for larger predators, including penguins, toothed whales, and seals. Yale's Peabody Museum of Natural History has one of the most important collections of these specimens in the world.

However, the new study suggests the acquisition of the antifreeze glycoproteins 22 to 42 million years ago was not the only reason for the successful adaptation of the Antarctic notothenioids. The largest radiation of notothenioid fish species into new habitats occurred at least 10 million years after the first appearance of glycoproteins, the study found.

"The evolution of antifreeze was often thought of as a 'smoking gun,' triggering the diversification of these fishes, but we found evidence that this adaptive radiation is not linked to a single trait, but to a combination of factors," Near said.

This evolutionary success story is threatened by climate change that has made the Southern Ocean around Antarctica one of the fastest-warming regions on Earth. The same traits that enabled the fish to survive and thrive on a cooling earth make them particularly susceptible to a warming one, notes Near.

"Given their strong polar adaptations and their inability to acclimate to warmer water temperatures, climate change could devastate this most interesting lineage of fish with a unique evolutionary history," Near said.


'/>"/>

Contact: Bill Hathaway
william.hathaway@yale.edu
203-432-1322
Yale University
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Plant-eating dinosaur discovered in Antarctica
2. Engineering team heads to Antarctica to explore hidden lake
3. Ancient glacial melting process similar to existing concerns about Antarctica, Greenland
4. Fossilized pollen reveals climate history of northern Antarctica
5. Human impacts on the marine ecosystems of Antarctica
6. Oceanographers call for more ocean observing in Antarctica
7. Scientists locate apparent hydrothermal vents off Antarctica
8. First comprehensive review of the state of Antarcticas climate
9. LSU gets to the bottom of things -- in Antarctica
10. Antarctica glacier retreat creates new carbon dioxide store
11. Algae and pollen grains provide evidence of remarkably warm period in Antarcticas history
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Fish of Antarctica threatened by climate change
(Date:5/23/2017)... , May 23, 2017  Hunova, the first robotic gym for the ... been officially launched in Genoa, Italy . The first ... and the USA . The technology was developed ... market by the IIT spin-off Movendo Technology thanks to a 10 million ... News Release, please click: ...
(Date:4/24/2017)... -- Janice Kephart , former 9/11 Commission ... LLP (IdSP) , today issues the following statement: ... 6, 2017 Executive Order: Protecting the Nation ... instilled with greater confidence, enabling the reactivation of ... are suspended by until at least July 2017). ...
(Date:4/13/2017)... MONICA, Calif. , April 13, 2017 ... New York will feature emerging and evolving ... Summits. Both Innovation Summits will run alongside the expo ... of speaker sessions, panels and demonstrations focused on trending ... coast,s largest advanced design and manufacturing event will take ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/26/2017)... ... June 26, 2017 , ... NDA Partners Chairman ... Director of Product Development R&D at Allergan and CMC expert with more than ... and established biopharma companies, has joined the firm as an Expert Consultant. ...
(Date:6/23/2017)... Frederick, MD (PRWEB) , ... June 23, 2017 ... ... laboratory software solutions provider, announced the latest version of LimitLIS®, its rapidly growing ... designed to speed up user adoption, ensure installation integrity, and provide more customization ...
(Date:6/22/2017)... ... June 21, 2017 , ... RMC Pharmaceutical Solutions, Inc. ... Timothy Reinhardt to manage the new site. , Tim has 25 years of ... most recent role as the Director of Manufacturing and Supplier Quality Assessment. ...
(Date:6/22/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... June 22, 2017 , ... ... superior results to clients throughout the biopharma and life sciences industries, continue to ... industry is seeing. Tunnell’s Kip Wolf will be speaking on “The State of ...
Breaking Biology Technology: