Document Detail

Experimental evidence for latent developmental plasticity: intertidal whelks respond to a native but not an introduced predator.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  18522925     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Animals with highly inducible traits may show no inducible response when exposed to a related but wholly novel cue. This appears to be true for the intertidal whelk Nucella lamellosa faced with a voracious introduced predator. In the laboratory, we exposed whelks to effluent from two species of predatory crab, the native red rock crab Cancer productus and the invasive European green crab Carcinus maenas. Nucella and Cancer have a long shared history in the northeast Pacific, whereas potential interaction with Carcinus began here less than 10 years ago. Although Nucella responded adaptively to Cancer effluent by increasing shell thickness and decreasing somatic growth, there was no such response to Carcinus. Furthermore, thicker shelled Nucella were less likely to be eaten by Carcinus. Because Nucella produces thicker shells when exposed to Cancer cues, its ability to respond similarly to Carcinus depends only on the coupling of the Carcinus cue to the existing developmental pathways for adaptive changes in shell form. Such coupling of latent plasticity to a novel cue -- via genetic changes or associative learning -- could explain many cases of rapid phenotypic change following a sudden shift in the environment.
Timothy C Edgell; Christopher J Neufeld
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Biology letters     Volume:  4     ISSN:  1744-9561     ISO Abbreviation:  Biol. Lett.     Publication Date:  2008 Aug 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2008-07-08     Completed Date:  2008-09-18     Revised Date:  2010-09-22    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  101247722     Medline TA:  Biol Lett     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  385-7     Citation Subset:  IM    
Bamfield Marine Sciences Centre, Bamfield, BC, Canada.
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MeSH Terms
Adaptation, Physiological*
Brachyura / physiology
Gastropoda / anatomy & histology,  growth & development,  physiology*
Population Dynamics
Predatory Behavior

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

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