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Author (up) Cattaneo, L.; Fabbri-Destro, M.; Boria, S.; Pieraccini, C.; Monti, A.; Cossu, G.; Rizzolatti, G. file  url
doi  openurl
  Title Impairment of actions chains in autism and its possible role in intention understanding Type Journal Article
  Year 2007 Publication Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America Abbreviated Journal Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A  
  Volume 104 Issue 45 Pages 17825-17830  
  Keywords Autistic Disorder--physiopathology; Child; Child, Preschool; Comprehension--physiology; Electromyography; Female; Humans; Intelligence; Intention; Male; Motor Activity; Perception--physiology; Reference Values  
  Abstract Experiments in monkeys demonstrated that many parietal and premotor neurons coding a specific motor act (e.g., grasping) show a markedly different activation when this act is part of actions that have different goals (e.g., grasping for eating vs. grasping for placing). Many of these “action-constrained” neurons have mirror properties firing selectively to the observation of the initial motor act of the actions to which they belong motorically. By activating a specific action chain from its very outset, this mechanism allows the observers to have an internal copy of the whole action before its execution, thus enabling them to understand directly the agent's intention. Using electromyographic recordings, we show that a similar chained organization exists in typically developing children, whereas it is impaired in children with autism. We propose that, as a consequence of this functional impairment, high-functioning autistic children may understand the intentions of others cognitively but lack the mechanism for understanding them experientially.  
  Call Number Serial 18  
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Author (up) Domingue, B.W.; Fletcher, J.; Conley, D.; Boardman, J.D. file  url
doi  openurl
  Title Genetic and educational assortative mating among US adults Type Journal Article
  Year 2014 Publication Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America Abbreviated Journal Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A  
  Volume 111 Issue 22 Pages 7996-8000  
  Keywords Continental Population Groups/genetics; Databases, Genetic; Educational Status; Ethnic Groups/genetics; Female; Genome-Wide Association Study; Genotype; Humans; Male; *Marriage; Metagenomics/*methods; Phenotype; *Sexual Behavior; *Spouses; United States; genetic homogamy; homophily; random mating  
  Abstract Understanding the social and biological mechanisms that lead to homogamy (similar individuals marrying one another) has been a long-standing issue across many fields of scientific inquiry. Using a nationally representative sample of non-Hispanic white US adults from the Health and Retirement Study and information from 1.7 million single-nucleotide polymorphisms, we compare genetic similarity among married couples to noncoupled pairs in the population. We provide evidence for genetic assortative mating in this population but the strength of this association is substantially smaller than the strength of educational assortative mating in the same sample. Furthermore, genetic similarity explains at most 10% of the assortative mating by education levels. Results are replicated using comparable data from the Framingham Heart Study.  
  Call Number Serial 1127  
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Author (up) Koch, A.M.; Kuhn, G.; Fontanillas, P.; Fumagalli, L.; Goudet, J.; Sanders, I.R. file  url
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  Title High genetic variability and low local diversity in a population of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi Type Journal Article
  Year 2004 Publication Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America Abbreviated Journal Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A  
  Volume 101 Issue 8 Pages 2369-2374  
  Keywords Analysis of Variance; Evolution, Molecular; *Genetic Variation; Mycorrhizae/classification/*genetics/growth & development/isolation & purification; Phenotype; *Phylogeny; Trees/microbiology  
  Abstract Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) are ecologically important root symbionts of most terrestrial plants. Ecological studies of AMF have concentrated on differences between species; largely assuming little variability within AMF species. Although AMF are clonal, they have evolved to contain a surprisingly high within-species genetic variability, and genetically different nuclei can coexist within individual spores. These traits could potentially lead to within-population genetic variation, causing differences in physiology and symbiotic function in AMF populations, a consequence that has been largely neglected. We found highly significant genetic and phenotypic variation among isolates of a population of Glomus intraradices but relatively low total observed genetic diversity. Because we maintained the isolated population in a constant environment, phenotypic variation can be considered as variation in quantitative genetic traits. In view of the large genetic differences among isolates by randomly sampling two individual spores, <50% of the total observed population genetic diversity is represented. Adding an isolate from a distant population did not increase total observed genetic diversity. Genetic variation exceeded variation in quantitative genetic traits, indicating that selection acted on the population to retain similar traits, which might be because of the multigenomic nature of AMF, where considerable genetic redundancy could buffer the effects of changes in the genetic content of phenotypic traits. These results have direct implications for ecological research and for studying AMF genes, improving commercial AMF inoculum, and understanding evolutionary mechanisms in multigenomic organisms.  
  Call Number Serial 930  
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Author (up) Rosa, R.; Seibel, B.A. file  url
doi  openurl
  Title Synergistic effects of climate-related variables suggest future physiological impairment in a top oceanic predator Type Journal Article
  Year 2008 Publication Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America Abbreviated Journal Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A  
  Volume 105 Issue 52 Pages 20776-20780  
  Keywords Adaptation, Physiological; Animals; Decapodiformes/*physiology; Feeding Behavior/*physiology; *Greenhouse Effect; Oceans and Seas; Oxygen Consumption/*physiology  
  Abstract By the end of this century, anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO(2)) emissions are expected to decrease the surface ocean pH by as much as 0.3 unit. At the same time, the ocean is expected to warm with an associated expansion of the oxygen minimum layer (OML). Thus, there is a growing demand to understand the response of the marine biota to these global changes. We show that ocean acidification will substantially depress metabolic rates (31%) and activity levels (45%) in the jumbo squid, Dosidicus gigas, a top predator in the Eastern Pacific. This effect is exacerbated by high temperature. Reduced aerobic and locomotory scope in warm, high-CO(2) surface waters will presumably impair predator-prey interactions with cascading consequences for growth, reproduction, and survival. Moreover, as the OML shoals, squids will have to retreat to these shallower, less hospitable, waters at night to feed and repay any oxygen debt that accumulates during their diel vertical migration into the OML. Thus, we demonstrate that, in the absence of adaptation or horizontal migration, the synergism between ocean acidification, global warming, and expanding hypoxia will compress the habitable depth range of the species. These interactions may ultimately define the long-term fate of this commercially and ecologically important predator.  
  Call Number Serial 88  
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