Navigation Links
Molecular biology fills gaps in knowledge of bat evolution

One in five mammals living on Earth is a bat, yet their evolutionary history is largely unknown because of a limited fossil record and conflicting or incomplete theories about their origins and divergence.

Now, a research team including University of California, Riverside Biology Professor Mark Springer, has published a paper in the Jan. 28 issue of the journal Science that uses molecular biology and the fossil data to fill in many of the gaps.

Springer coauthors the paper, titled A Molecular Phylogeny for Bats Illuminates Biogeography and the Fossil Record, with William Murphy, Stephen J. O'Brien and Emma. C. Teeling of the National Cancer Institute's Laboratory of Genomic Diversity, Frederick, MD; Ole Madsen in the Department of Biochemistry at the University of Nijmegen, the Netherlands; and Paul Bates of the Harrison Institute's Centre for Systematics and Biodiversity Research, Kent, U.K.

"The present work advances our understanding of where bats originated, when they diversified and how different bat families are related to each other," Springer said. "It also quantifies the fraction of the fossil record that is missing for bats."

The team, using DNA sequencing, analyzed data from portions of 17 nuclear genes from representatives of all bat families.

Their results support the hypothesis that the group of large fruit-eating bats from the tropics, that fly mostly during the day - known to biologists as megabats - emerged from four major lineages of smaller and more widely dispersed, mostly insect-eating, night-flying bats, known as microbats. These microbats - also known for their highly specialized echolocation - originated about 52 to 50 million years ago during a lush period of significant global warming in a region that is now North America.

This latest research helps fill gaps in the evolutionary history of one of the most diverse group of mammals on earth and the only mammals capable of powered flight. The foss il record alone left bat evolutionary history about 61 percent incomplete, according to Springer. Bats play a major ecological role as plant pollinators and insect predators.

For Springer, this latest research is significant because it shows that molecular information can contribute to resolving and illuminating long-standing problems in evolutionary biology.

The current findings lay the groundwork for further research that, Springer hopes, will expand the coverage of classifications of bats from the family level to the genus level and probe in more detail into the bat evolutionary record. He also plans to compare the completeness of the bat fossil record with that of other mammals.


'"/>

Source:University of California - Riverside


Related biology news :

1. Molecular machine may lead to new drugs to combat human diseases
2. Molecular Motors Cooperate In Moving Cellular Cargo, Study Shows
3. Molecular models advance the fight against malaria
4. Molecular fossils uncover link between viruses and the immune system
5. Molecular thermometers on skin cells detect heat and camphor
6. Molecular messengers perform a crucial role in the ability of injured nerve cells to heal themselves
7. Molecular steps involved in the creation of gene-silencing microRNAs identified
8. Molecular miners find pain relief drugs from the sea
9. Molecular mechanism of feather formation found
10. Molecular trigger for Huntingtons disease found
11. Molecular Partners Required For Appropriate Neuronal Gene Repression
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:12/15/2016)... Germany , December 15, 2016 ... announced an agreement with NuData Security, an award-winning ... partnership will enable clients to focus on good customer experience, ... protection regulation. ... In order to provide a one-stop fraud prevention suite, ...
(Date:12/15/2016)...  There is much more to innovative access systems ... Continental will demonstrate the intelligence of today,s solutions at ... Through the combination of the keyless entry and start ... the international technology company is opening up new possibilities ... "The integration of biometric elements brings our expertise ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... Calif. , Dec. 8, 2016  Singulex, Inc., ... Molecule Counting technology, entered into a license and supply ... serving science. The agreement provides Singulex access to Thermo ... Europe is used to diagnose systemic ... United States to aid in assessing the ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:1/19/2017)... , Jan. 19, 2017 AquaBounty Technologies, Inc. ... enhancing productivity in aquaculture and a majority-owned subsidiary of ... it has completed the listing of its common shares ... subscription from Intrexon. "AquaBounty,s listing on NASDAQ ... broaden our exposure to the U.S. markets as we ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... Island, NY (PRWEB) , ... January 19, 2017 , ... ... at an exponential rate. The tremendous growth is accounted to two main factors. ... the table and the expanding network of vendors supplying FireflySci products all around the ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... BETHESDA, Md. , Jan. 18, 2017  Northwest ... company developing DCVax® personalized immune therapies for operable and ... Marnix Bosch , Chief Technical Officer of NW Bio, ... Thursday, January 19, 2017, at the Hyatt Regency Hotel ... Dr. Bosch will chair the session entitled "New Therapeutic ...
(Date:1/18/2017)... ... January 18, 2017 , ... ... interconnect using USB or PCI Express, announced the ZEM5310 USB 3.0 FPGA Module, ... into a compact business-card sized form factor suitable for prototyping, testing, and production-ready ...
Breaking Biology Technology: