Navigation Links
Long-extinct passenger pigeon finds a place in the family tree

hestnuts. The pigeons nested in dense colonies covering hundreds of acres. This made them easy targets for human predators.

Intensive hunting of the pigeons in the mid-to-late 19th century disrupted their ability to breed, Johnson said. That and habitat destruction led to the bird's eventual extinction. (The last of her kind, a passenger pigeon named Martha, died in the Cincinnati Zoo in 1914.)

To find the passenger pigeon's place in the evolutionary history of pigeons and doves, Johnson and his colleagues compared sequences from two of its mitochondrial genes with those of 78 species of pigeons and doves from around the world. (There are more than 300 species of pigeons and doves worldwide.)

"We had two sequences from the mitochondrial genome, which is a separate organelle in the cell that has its own genome," Johnson said. Mitochondrial genes are plentiful and so are easier to sequence, he said. And the mitochondrial genome evolves more rapidly than the nuclear genome, making it a good target for evolutionary studies.

The researchers first analyzed the available sequence data for all (extant and extinct) pigeons and doves together. Then they focused only on the living species, for which much more genetic information is available. They built a family tree of all living pigeons and doves, and then compared the available gene sequences of the passenger pigeon to those of its relatives to find its place in that tree. Both approaches placed the passenger pigeon on the same place in the tree.

Prior to this study, some believed that the passenger pigeon was most closely related to the mourning dove, a smaller species that also has a relatively long tail, Johnson said.

"But it turns out, based on the DNA, that it's actually related to the New World big pigeons in a totally different genus," he said.

The band-tailed pigeon, Patagioenas fasciata, which lives in the western mountainous regions of North

Contact: Diana Yates
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Sorting the drivers from the passengers in the cancer genome
2. Slotted buses keep passengers cool
3. Montana State team finds rare oasis of life on floor of Yellowstone Lake
4. Alcohol consumers are becoming the norm, UT Southwestern analysis finds
5. National study finds strong link between diabetes and air pollution
6. Study finds language barriers may play role in health care disparities
7. First study of its kind finds children with food allergies are often victims of bullying
8. UM School of Medicine Center for Celiac Research finds rate of celiac disease is growing
9. Pitt/Iowa team finds cellular structural molecule can be toxic: Makes pneumonia worse
10. Study finds possible persistence switch for tuberculosis
11. New study finds milk drinkers may have a healthy weight advantage
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
Long-extinct passenger pigeon finds a place in the family tree
(Date:9/18/2014)... the fish world, are the ideal animal in which ... moved from the ocean into tens of thousands of ... changing their skeleton to adapt to the new environment. ... sticklebacks now have turned up one of the genes ... change in that gene,s regulation in a freshwater population ...
(Date:9/18/2014)... has found clownfish larvae can swim up to 400 kilometres ... to cope with environmental change. , Clownfish spend their entire ... as babies they must wander the open ocean, says study ... for Coral Reef Studies (Coral CoE) at James Cook University. ... but now we,ve been given a rare glimpse into how ...
(Date:9/17/2014)... From accessible and affordable health care to reproductive ... depend on the ability of people to identify ... openly and respectfully, and find the most defensible ... practices to support these societal conversations?, The Hastings ... of Bioethical Issues have teamed up to publish ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Counting fish teeth reveals regulatory DNA changes behind rapid evolution, adaptation 2Counting fish teeth reveals regulatory DNA changes behind rapid evolution, adaptation 3Nemo's epic journey to find a new home 2Why bioethics literacy matters 2Why bioethics literacy matters 3
... change in the Southwest will likely eliminate Joshua trees from ... years, according to a new study led by U.S. Geological ... of future climate, an analysis of the climatic tolerances of ... to project the future distribution of Joshua trees. The study ...
... Washington, D.C.Recent climate modeling has shown that reducing ... would give the Earth a wetter climate in ... Ecology scientists Long Cao and Ken Caldeira offers ... when atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) concentrations are decreasing. ...
... European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in Heidelberg, Germany, have ... any protein of their choice with any of a ... by introducing a single reactive artificial amino acid. Published ... to label even rare proteins very precisely for optical ...
Cached Biology News:Uncertain future for Joshua trees projected with climate change 2Cutting carbon dioxide helps prevent drying 2
(Date:9/19/2014)... Life is rarely simple. From crop yields to disease ... usually those considered "complex traits." Just as for heightthe ... a particular human disease are shaped by multiple genetic ... genes involved. To track down such genes, geneticists typically ... a large mouse and a small mouseand then study ...
(Date:9/19/2014)... YORK, September 18, 2014 Scientists at NYU Langone ... dramatically the efficiency of the process for turning adult ... well-known compounds, including vitamin C. Using the new technique ... cells obtained from adult skin cells by more than ... technique is efficient and reliable, and thus should generally ...
(Date:9/19/2014)... that use light, rather than electricity, to move ... energy efficiency is a growing concern as chips, ... components of optical circuits light emitters, modulators, ... build. One promising light source for optical chips ... properties when deposited as a single, atom-thick layer. ...
(Date:9/19/2014)... September 19, 2014 Follow ... potential to revolutionize the world has attracted diverse ... and small start-ups. The early years of nanotechnology ... largely due to the high risks involved, which ... earmarked for this evolving technology have been growing ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Want to link genes to complex traits? Start with more diversity 2NYU Langone scientists report reliable and highly efficient method for making stem cells 2NYU Langone scientists report reliable and highly efficient method for making stem cells 3Toward optical chips 2Toward optical chips 3Growing R&D Investments & Developments in Nanomaterials to Drive the Global Nanotechnology Market, According to New Report by Global Industry Analysts, Inc. 2Growing R&D Investments & Developments in Nanomaterials to Drive the Global Nanotechnology Market, According to New Report by Global Industry Analysts, Inc. 3Growing R&D Investments & Developments in Nanomaterials to Drive the Global Nanotechnology Market, According to New Report by Global Industry Analysts, Inc. 4
... For the second time in three years, the Best of ... Labs(R) as Utah,s top, company in the Medical ... /PRNewswire/ - American Biotech Labs, LLC (ABL), developer of a new ... today announced that the company has won the 2009 Utah Best ...
... ) today announced that management will present at the following two investor ... Global Healthcare Conference, Tuesday, June 9, 2009, ... Conference, Thursday, June 11, 2009, 11:00 ... and available for replay from Dendreon,s website, . ...
... Burbano to senior associate and project architects Tess Kavanagh and ... firm ( ) provides a ... healthcare, academic and civic clients throughout the Western United States. ... 20 years of architectural design experience. He is currently ...
Cached Biology Technology:American Biotech Labs(R) Garners 2009 Utah Best of State Award 2American Biotech Labs(R) Garners 2009 Utah Best of State Award 3Ratcliff Promotes Jorge Burbano to Senior Associate; Tess Kavanagh and Tony Keung to Associate 2
... Jouan MSC series of Class II ... conditions and certification to the world's ... ensures that the cabinets cannot be ... Natural lighting, low noise and arm ...
... Fluoroskan Ascent is a dedicated ... for all kinds of assays ... and for clinical applications. Cell ... are all important application areas. ...
... A sleek design loaded with class-leading features, the ... that your work is safe and consistent every time ... the new 1400 Series reduces power consumption by as ... of dollars over the life of the cabinet. ...
... The Magnetic Stand-96 is designed for paramagnetic ... and 0.2 ml PCR plates with no ... polyacryl base in a standard SBS 96-well ... strong permanent magnets guarantees easy and fast ...
Biology Products: