Document Detail

Evolutionary reduction of developmental plasticity in desert spadefoot toads.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  21883613     Owner:  NLM     Status:  Publisher    
Organisms vary their rates of growth and development in response to environmental inputs. Such developmental plasticity may be adaptive and positively correlate with environmental heterogeneity. However, the evolution of developmental plasticity among closely related taxa is not well understood. To determine the evolutionary pattern of plasticity, we compared plasticity in time to and size at metamorphosis in response to water desiccation in tadpoles among spadefoot species that differ in breeding pond and larval period durations. Like most tadpoles, spadefoot tadpoles possess the remarkable ability to accelerate development in response to pond drying to avoid desiccation. Here, we hypothesize that desert spadefoot tadpoles have evolved reduced plasticity to avoid desiccation in ephemeral desert pools compared to their nondesert relatives that breed in long-duration ponds. We recorded time to and size at metamorphosis following experimental manipulation of water levels and found that desert-adapted species had much less plasticity in larval period and size at metamorphosis than nondesert species, which retain the hypothetical ancestral state of plasticity. Furthermore, we observed a correlation between degree of plasticity and fat body content that may provide mechanistic insights into the evolution of developmental plasticity in amphibians.
S S Kulkarni; I Gomez-Mestre; C L Moskalik; B L Storz; D R Buchholz
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Publication Detail:
Type:  JOURNAL ARTICLE     Date:  2011-8-23
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of evolutionary biology     Volume:  -     ISSN:  1420-9101     ISO Abbreviation:  -     Publication Date:  2011 Aug 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2011-9-2     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8809954     Medline TA:  J Evol Biol     Country:  -    
Other Details:
Languages:  ENG     Pagination:  -     Citation Subset:  -    
Copyright Information:
© 2011 The Authors. Journal of Evolutionary Biology © 2011 European Society For Evolutionary Biology.
Department of Biological Sciences, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH, USA Department of Wetland Ecology, Doñana Biological Station, CSIC, Spain Department of Biology, Centre College, Danville, KY, USA.
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