Navigation Links
UA researchers trace bat killer's path
Date:1/29/2014

As North American bats face a death toll approaching 7 million, University of Akron scientists reveal new clues about their killer, White Nose Syndrome, or WNS. The UA researchers reveal that the deadly WNS fungus can likely survive in caves with or without the presence of bats and threatens the regional extinction of North American bats.

This discovery casts a gloomy forecast for the curious flying mammals, which serve as critical food plant pollinators and offer important information used in medical research, particularly as it pertains to blindness. But there is an ecological consequence to bat extinction: a single bat can eat thousands of insects in a single night. Bats are critical to controlling bugs that threaten agriculture and forestry; their pest-control value to the economy is estimated in the billions of dollars.

The UA research identifies cold-loving, cave-dwelling fungi closely related to WNS, and where and how they spread, and how they survive. These findings help predict the future of North American bats among them the common Little Brown Bat, first seen with WSN in Ohio in March 2011.

Led by Hazel Barton, UA associate professor of biology and recognized as having one of the world's preeminent cave microbiology labs, the research points to a group of fungi related to WSN, which appears as a white, powdery substance on the muzzles, ears and wings of infected bats and gives them the appearance they've been dunked in powdered sugar. Since it was first discovered in hibernating bats in New York in winter 2006-07, WNS has spread across 22 states, including Ohio. In Vermont's Aeolus Cave, which once housed 800,000 bats, WSN wiped out the hibernation den's entire population.

In their research paper, "Comparison of the White-Nose Syndrome agent Pseudogymnoascus destructans to cave-dwelling relatives suggests reduced saprotrophic enzyme activity," published Jan. 22, 2014 by the PLOS ONE, Barton and UA post-doctoral fellow Hannah Reynolds compare two closely related fungi species and reveal common threads, including the discovery that the related fungi share the same nutritional needs. Originally satisfied by cave soil, the fungus' nutritional source has now transferred to bats. Barton and her colleagues are zeroing in on when the fungus transferred from environment to bat and the consequences of the fungus' relentless ability to survive solely in caves, uninhabited by bats.

"The jump from the environment to the bat has come at the expense of some ability for Pd to grow in the environment, but not entirely," says Barton, who adds that the fungus still retains enough function to grow exclusively in caves in the absence of bats.

"The ability of the fungus to grow in caves absent of bats would mean that future attempts to reintroduce bats to caves would be doomed to failure," she says.

Ongoing research in Barton's UA lab continues to examine the sustainability of WNS to help determine the future of bats amid the deadly disease.


'/>"/>

Contact: Denise Henry
henryd@uakron.edu
330-972-6477
University of Akron
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Study by UC Santa Barbara researchers suggests that bacteria communicate by touch
2. UC Santa Barbara researchers discover genetic link between visual pathways of hydras and humans
3. Researchers attempt to solve problems of antibiotic resistance and bee deaths in one
4. UNH researchers find African farmers need better climate change data to improve farming practices
5. Ottawa researchers to lead world-first clinical trial of stem cell therapy for septic shock
6. Researchers uncover molecular pathway through which common yeast becomes fungal pathogen
7. Researchers print live cells with a standard inkjet printer
8. Columbia Engineering and Penn researchers increase speed of single-molecule measurements
9. Researchers reveal how a single gene mutation leads to uncontrolled obesity
10. Researchers discover novel therapy for Crohns disease
11. New paper by Notre Dame researchers describes method for cleaning up nuclear waste
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
UA researchers trace bat killer's path
(Date:3/9/2016)... March 9, 2016 Nigeria ... that more than 23,000 public service employees either did ... receiving their salary unlawfully.    --> ... identified that more than 23,000 public service employees either ... been receiving their salary unlawfully.    --> ...
(Date:3/3/2016)... -- FlexTech, a SEMI Strategic Association Partner, awarded five FLEXI ... Leadership in Education, and, in a category new this ... year of the FLEXI Awards and the winners join ... past years . Judging was done on a set ... by a panel of non-affiliated, independent, industry experts. ...
(Date:3/2/2016)... 2, 2016 ... of the  "Global Biometrics Market in Hospitality ... (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130307/600769) , , Global biometrics market ... a CAGR of around 27%   ... announced the addition of the  "Global Biometrics ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/3/2016)... ... May 03, 2016 , ... Leading CEOs from biotech, ... 31st and June 1st at The Four Seasons Hotel Boston. , The Boston ... sciences, offering exclusive access to key decision makers who influence deal making and ...
(Date:5/3/2016)... ... May 03, 2016 , ... ... unique bioresearch materials from laboratories across the globe, today announced the availability of ... the pace of research toward treatment and prevention measures for the Zika virus, ...
(Date:5/3/2016)... May 3, 2016 - And ... and Producers of Those Competitor Biologics  - ... Activities and Prospects ,  Who are the ... And what are their sales potentials? Discover, in our ... results, trends, opportunities and revenue forecasting. ...
(Date:5/3/2016)... New York, NY (PRWEB) , ... May 03, 2016 , ... ... Lenox Hill Hospital , for definitive prostate cancer treatment, patients traditionally had two main ... an appropriate treatment plan would be made. , New technology has enabled doctors ...
Breaking Biology Technology: