Document Detail

Dietary sugar as a direct fuel for flight in the nectarivorous bat Glossophaga soricina.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  18203985     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
It is thought that the capacity of mammals to directly supply the energetic needs of exercising muscles using recently ingested fuels is limited. Humans, for example, can only fuel about 30%, at most, of exercise metabolism with dietary sugar. Using indirect calorimetry, i.e. measurement of rates of O(2) consumption and CO(2) production, in combination with carbon stable isotope techniques, we found that nectarivorous bats Glossophaga soricina use recently ingested sugars to provide approximately 78% of the fuel required for oxidative metabolism during their energetically expensive hovering flight. Among vertebrate animals, only hummingbirds exceed the capacity of these nectarivorous bats to fuel exercise with dietary sucrose. Similar experiments performed on Anna's (Calypte anna) and rufous (Selasphorus rufus) hummingbirds show that they use recently ingested sugars to support approximately 95% of hovering metabolism. These results support the suggestion that convergent evolution of physiological and biochemical traits has occurred among hovering nectarivorous animals, rendering them capable of a process analogous to aerial refueling in aircraft.
Kenneth C Welch; L Gerardo Herrera M; Raul K Suarez
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't; Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.    
Journal Detail:
Title:  The Journal of experimental biology     Volume:  211     ISSN:  0022-0949     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Exp. Biol.     Publication Date:  2008 Feb 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2008-01-21     Completed Date:  2008-05-01     Revised Date:  2011-10-18    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0243705     Medline TA:  J Exp Biol     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  310-6     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Ecology, Evolution and Marine Biology, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA 93106-9610, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Carbon Isotopes
Chiroptera / physiology*
Dietary Sucrose / metabolism*,  pharmacology
Feeding Behavior*
Flight, Animal / physiology*
Isotope Labeling
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Carbon Isotopes; 0/Dietary Sucrose
Erratum In:
J Exp Biol. 2011 Oct 1;214(Pt 19):3324

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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