Navigation Links
Asexual worm quickly adapts to soil contamination

Soil contaminants lead to rapid genetic adaptations in the nematode Acrobeloides nanus. The worms from contaminated soil live longer and lay more eggs under polluted conditions than the worms from unpolluted soil. Dutch-sponsored researcher Agnieszka Doroszuk demonstrated this in her study into the long-term effects of environmental pollution on soil organisms.

Environmental pollution is an important cause of stress in natural populations. This not only has consequences for the size, dynamics and structure of the population but it can also lead to genetic changes and adaptations. Doroszuk investigated the long-term effects of pollution on the bacteria-eating nematode Acrobeloides nanus. This asexually reproducing nematode is easy to culture and study. The research is innovative due to a multidisciplinary approach, in which methods from various disciplines such as ecology, toxicology, molecular biology and evolutionary biology provide insights into the effect of soil pollution at different levels of biological organisation.

Genetic adaptation

The nematode was exposed to a combination of different pH and copper values. As well as their individual effects, the pH and the copper levels in the soil can exert a synergistic effect on the nematode population. Unexpectedly fast adaptation was observed and considerable genetic changes took place. As a result of this the nematodes in the polluted soil became resistant to the contamination. In the contaminated culturing medium they laid more eggs and lived for longer than the nematodes from the clean soil.

Asexual

The rapid adaptation to the environment in an asexual species is an interesting finding. It contradicts the general opinion that asexual species have low adaptive potential and that they adapt to stress less easily than sexual species. At present these asexual species are used as test organisms in ecotoxicological risk evaluations. The question now arises as to whether they are suitable for this purpose.

The results of this study are important for the development of protection strategies for natural populations. This can be realised by focusing environmental management more on functions such as biomass turnover rate and less on the structure and biomasss of populations per se. In her thesis Doroszuk shows that contributions from various research disciplines are crucial for insight into underlying mechanisms of the response to stress and for the consequences for the natural system.
'"/>

Source:Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research


Related biology news :

1. To translate touch, the brain can quickly rearrange its sense of the body
2. Gene patterns in white blood cells quickly diagnose disease
3. Animals can change genes quickly to keep up with viral ingenuity
4. New MRI technique quickly builds 3-D images of knees
5. Mussels evolve quickly to defend against invasive crabs
6. Biodegradable napkin -- featuring sensitive nanofibers -- may quickly detect biohazards
7. Drug can quickly mobilize an army of cells to repair injury
8. A new portable biosensor detects traces of contaminants in food more quickly and cheaply
9. Resistant HIV quickly hides in infants cells
10. Arctic ice retreating more quickly than computer models project
11. Retina adapts to seek the unexpected, ignore the commonplace

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:4/28/2016)... SAN FRANCISCO and BANGALORE, India ... part of EdgeVerve Systems, a product subsidiary of Infosys (NYSE: ... service provider, today announced a global partnership that ... convenient way to use mobile banking and payment services. ... Mobility is a key innovation area for financial services, but ...
(Date:4/15/2016)... 2016  A new partnership announced today will ... decisions in a fraction of the time it ... high-value life insurance policies to consumers without requiring ... Force Diagnostics, rapid testing (A1C, Cotinine and HIV) ... pressure, weight, pulse, BMI, and activity data) available ...
(Date:3/31/2016)... March 31, 2016  Genomics firm Nabsys has completed ... Barrett Bready , M.D., who returned to the ... original technical leadership team, including Chief Technology Officer, ... Development, Steve Nurnberg and Vice President of Software and ... company. Dr. Bready served as CEO of ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... June 27, 2016 , ... Parallel 6 , ... announced today the Clinical Reach Virtual Patient Encounter CONSULT module which enables ... the physician and clinical trial team. , Using the CONSULT module, patients and physicians ...
(Date:6/27/2016)...   Ginkgo Bioworks , a leading organism ... today awarded as one of the World Economic ... most innovative companies. Ginkgo Bioworks is engineering biology ... world in the nutrition, health and consumer goods ... customers including Fortune 500 companies to design microbes ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Researchers at the Universita ... miRNAs in people with peritoneal or pleural mesothelioma. Their findings are the subject of ... now. , Diagnostic biomarkers are signposts in the blood, lung fluid or tissue ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 2016 /PRNewswire/ - FACIT has announced the creation ... biotechnology company, Propellon Therapeutics Inc. ("Propellon" or "the ... a portfolio of first-in-class WDR5 inhibitors for the ... WDR5 represent an exciting class of therapies, possessing ... for cancer patients. Substantial advances have been achieved ...
Breaking Biology Technology: