Navigation Links
Whiskers marked milestone in evolution of mammals from reptiles
Date:11/10/2011

Research from the University of Sheffield comparing rats and mice with their distance relatives the marsupial, suggests that moveable whiskers were an important milestone in the evolution of mammals from reptiles.

Using high-speed digital video recording and automatic tracking, the research team, which was led by Professor Tony Prescott from the University's Department of Psychology, have shed light on how rodents such as mice and rats move their whiskers back-and-forth at high speed and in varying ways to actively sense the environment around them in a behaviour known as whisking. Whisking allows mice or rats to accurately determine the position, shape and texture of objects, make rapid and accurate decisions about objects, and then use the information to build environmental maps.

When running in a straight line, rats and mice move their whiskers back-and-forth the same amount on both sides. However when turning, they bias their whisker movements in the direction of the turn, and when the whiskers on one side of the head contact an object, those on the opposite side sweep round to gather more information. These active sensing strategies boost the information gained by the whiskers helping the animals to better understand their world through touch.

In their latest research, the team have shown that whisking like that of rodents, using these active sensing strategies, is also seen in a small South American marsupial - the grey short-tailed opossum. This animal has many similarities to an early mammal that would have lived more than 125 million years ago; that is, around the same time that the evolutionary lines leading to modern rodents and marsupials diverged.

This evidence suggests that some of the first mammals may also have whisked like a modern mouse or rat, and that the appearance of moveable whiskers was pivotal in the evolution of mammals from reptiles. The research is published in Philosophical Transactions
'/>"/>

Contact: Shemina Davis, Media Relations Officer
shemina.davis@sheffield.ac.uk
01-142-225-339
University of Sheffield
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Whiskers hold secrets of invasive minks
2. Harbor seals whiskers as good at detecting fish as echolocating dolphins
3. Seals sense shapes using their whiskers to feel wakes
4. Marked improvement in body image, physical stamina, post-surgical pectus patients report
5. First global study of real-world circumcision rollout conducted over 3-year period in South Africa amongst 110,000 adults shows a marked reduction (>60 percent) of HIV acquisition among circumcised adult men
6. Missouri Botanical Garden mounts milestone 6 millionth herbarium specimen
7. Milestone achieved toward production of malaria treatment using synthetic biology and fermentation
8. ExcellGene and Khner achieved milestone in development of novel 250 Liter mammalian cell culture bioreactors
9. Milestone in live microscopy focus of $2 million NIH grant
10. Lockheed Martin Team Completes Key Design Milestone on Federal Bureau of Investigations Next Generation Identification Program
11. Milestone discovery in cell behaviors
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/24/2015)... 24, 2015 The biologics safety testing market ... for the market include growth of the pharmaceutical and ... launches. Over the years, the number of drug approvals ... 2010, the FDA approved 225 drug applications and Health ... Europe accounted for 3,822 of the ...
(Date:6/24/2015)... , June 22, 2015 ... announced the addition of the "Huawei Ascend ... report to their offering. Huawei,s ... to the opposite direction than Apple,s and Samsung,s ... fingerprint sensor developed by Fingerprint Cards, a main ...
(Date:6/23/2015)... 2015 Research and ... the "Body-Worn Temperature Sensors Market - Global ... 2014 - 2020" report to their offering. ... the global body-worn temperature sensors market. The global ... the basis of types, care setting, patient demographic, ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Biological Safety Testing Market by Application, Product, & Test - Global Forecast to 2019 2Biological Safety Testing Market by Application, Product, & Test - Global Forecast to 2019 3Biological Safety Testing Market by Application, Product, & Test - Global Forecast to 2019 4Huawei Ascend Mate 7 Fingerprint Sensor - Reverse Costing Analysis 2Body-Worn Temperature Sensors Market - Global Industry Analysis 2
... When it comes to solving complex problems, Geoffrey ... to nature for solutions. Finding inspiration in systems that ... tackle one of society,s biggest challenges: improving tumor detection ... rate of cancer patients. Today, the 28-year-old ...
... The March issue of the Journal of the ... eating habits of consumers at all stages of the ... elderly adults. Fruit and Vegetable Consumption among ... guidelines for fruit and vegetable consumption, according to researchers ...
... . , Two McGill researchers have been ... Dr. Andrew P. Hendry an associate professor with McGill,s ... Karim Nader, an associate professor and Willam Dawson Chair ... prestigious fellowships from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research ...
Cached Biology News:MIT student develops new innovations to selectively kill cancer cells 2MIT student develops new innovations to selectively kill cancer cells 3MIT student develops new innovations to selectively kill cancer cells 4News from the March 2009 Journal of the American Dietetic Association 22 McGill researchers garner prestigious NSERC Steacie Fellowships 2
(Date:6/26/2015)... June 26, 2015  SeraCare Life Sciences, a ... today announced that it has signed a Cooperative ... Cancer Institute (NCI), part of the National Institutes ... controls for cancer assays.  The CRADA will investigate ... quantitate control DNA biosynthetics spiked into a genomic ...
(Date:6/26/2015)... 26, 2015 /PRNewswire/ - iCo Therapeutics ("iCo" or "the ... all nominees listed in the management information circular ... 2015 Annual Meeting of Shareholders, held earlier today, ... the following 5 nominees proposed by management were ... until the Company,s next Annual Meeting of Shareholders ...
(Date:6/26/2015)... STRASBURG, Va. , June 26, 2015  A ... release two products made with synthetic rhino horn: beer ... in Vietnam . In response to ... oppose the manufacture, marketing and sale of synthetic rhino ... (IRF) and Save the Rhino International ...
(Date:6/26/2015)... ... June 26, 2015 , ... Claremont BioSolutions, ... technologies have been integrated into a sample prep module intended to enable real-time ... part of the NASA’s WetLab-2 Project. , On June 28, 2015, SpaceX CRS-7 ...
Breaking Biology Technology:SeraCare Life Sciences Signs CRADA with NCI to Advance Cancer Diagnostics 2SeraCare Life Sciences Signs CRADA with NCI to Advance Cancer Diagnostics 3iCo Therapeutics Announces Voting & Election Results from Annual Meeting of Shareholders 2iCo Therapeutics Announces Voting & Election Results from Annual Meeting of Shareholders 3Rhino Experts Oppose Synthetic Rhino Horn as Solution to Poaching Crisis 2Claremont BioSolutions’ SimplePrep™ Products Deployed in NASA Wetlab-2 Project Slated for June 28th Flight to International Space Station aboard SpaceX CRS-7 2Claremont BioSolutions’ SimplePrep™ Products Deployed in NASA Wetlab-2 Project Slated for June 28th Flight to International Space Station aboard SpaceX CRS-7 3
... association for Michigan biosciences, will host Harry Stylli, Ph.D., ... as the keynote speaker for its May 6 Annual ... Arbor. Sequenom has established a presence in Michigan ... (CMM) in Grand Rapids and Ann Arbor-based Sensigen.Dr. Harry ...
... Upcoming SharpBrains Market Report at IHRSA 2009 Convention. , ... ... of SharpBrains and member of the World Economic Forum,s Council on ... (International Health, Racquet and Sportsclub Association) Annual Convention the results of ...
... company adds new apoAI measurement and apoB/apoAI ratio to ... March 17 /PRNewswire/ -- Atherotech, ... Cholesterol Test in booth #1263 at ACC.09, the American ... The annual meeting takes place March 29-31, 2009, at ...
Cached Biology Technology:MichBio Announces Annual Business Meeting Keynote and Pre-Meeting Workshop 2MichBio Announces Annual Business Meeting Keynote and Pre-Meeting Workshop 3New Brain Fitness Survey Reinforces Importance of Brain Awareness Week 2New Brain Fitness Survey Reinforces Importance of Brain Awareness Week 3New Brain Fitness Survey Reinforces Importance of Brain Awareness Week 4Atherotech to Exhibit the VAP(R) Cholesterol Test at ACC.09 in Orlando 2Atherotech to Exhibit the VAP(R) Cholesterol Test at ACC.09 in Orlando 3