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Port Glasgow, United Kingdom

Bass A.M.,University of Glasgow | Bass A.M.,James Cook University | Waldron S.,University of Glasgow | Preston T.,Scottish Universities Environmental Research Center | Adams C.E.,Institute of Biomedical and Life science
Hydrobiologia | Year: 2010

Understanding the effects of trophic status and dissolved organic carbon concentration (DOC) on lake carbon cycling is essential for accurate ecosystem carbon models. Using isotopically labelled substrates we assessed spatial and temporal variability in bacterial respiration (BR) and algal primary production (PP) in two trophically, morphometrically and hydrologically different basins in Loch Lomond, a large temperate lake in Scotland. GIS modelling was used to construct a whole lake balance for bacterial production/respiration and PP, and from this the proportion of heterotrophy fuelled by allochthonous carbon was estimated. We tested the hypotheses that trophic status and DOC concentration affect the balance between PP and BR and examined which is the more significant driving factor. Additionally we estimated the percentage of BR that is fuelled by terrestrial carbon. PP varied seasonally and showed inter-basin homogeneity. BR was greatest in the mesotrophic south basin in autumn, which corresponded to measured peak DOC input, though over an annual cycle no relationship was observed between BR and DOC concentration. The PP:BR ratio was 0.37 ± 0.30 and 0.3 ± 0.45 in the north and south basins, respectively, assuming a bacterial growth efficiency of 0.1. We have found that allochthonous carbon potentially supports a substantial quantity of pelagic production, even during periods of high photosynthesis. Less productive systems are thought to be dominated by heterotrophic processes. However, we have found that the mesotrophic basin of a large lake to be as heterotrophic as its neighbouring oligotrophic basin, an observation that has implications for our understanding of modelling of the role of lakes in linking the terrestrial-atmospheric carbon cycle. © 2010 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

Seras-Franzoso J.,Autonomous University of Barcelona | Seras-Franzoso J.,CIBER ISCIII | Tsimbouri P.M.,University of Glasgow | Burgess K.V.,Institute of Biomedical and Life science | And 9 more authors.
Nanomedicine | Year: 2014

Aim: Bacterial inclusion bodies (IBs) are nanostructured (submicron), pseudospherical proteinaceous particles produced in recombinant bacteria resulting from ordered protein aggregation. Being mechanically stable, several physicochemical and biological properties of IBs can be tuned by appropriate selection of the producer strain and of culture conditions. It has been previously shown that IBs favor cell adhesion and surface colonization by mammalian cell lines upon decoration on materials surfaces, but how these biomaterials could influence the behavior of mesenchymal stem cells remains to be explored. Materials & methods: Here, the authors vary topography, stiffness and wettability using the IBs to decorate polycaprolactone surfaces on which mesenchymal stem cells are cultured. Results: The authors show that these topographies can be used to specifically target osteogenesis from mesenchymal stem cells, and through metabolomics, they show that the cells have increased energy demand during this bone-related differentiation. Conclusion: IBs as topographies can be used not only to direct cell proliferation but also to target differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells. © 2014 Future Medicine Ltd.

Bass A.M.,University of Glasgow | Bass A.M.,James Cook University | Waldron S.,University of Glasgow | Preston T.,Scottish Universities Environmental Research Center | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Limnology | Year: 2010

Modelling limnetic carbon processes is necessary for accurate global carbon models and stable isotope analysis can provide additional insight of carbon flow pathways. This research examined the spatial and temporal complexity of carbon cycling in a large temperate lake. Dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) is utilised by photosynthetic organisms and dissolved oxygen (DO) is used by heterotrophic organisms during respiration. Thus the spatial heterogeneity in the pelagic metabolic balance in Loch Lomond, Scotland was investigated using a combined natural abundance isotope technique. The isotopic signatures of dissolved inorganic carbon (δ13CDIC) and dissolved oxygen (δ18ODO) were measured concurrently on four different dates between November 2004 and September 2005. We measured isotopic variation over small and large spatial scales, both horizontal distance and depth. δ13CDIC and δ18ODO changed over a seasonal cycle, becoming concurrently more positive (negative) in the summer (winter) months, responding to increased photosynthetic and respiratory rates, respectively. With increasing depth, δ13CDIC became more negative and δ18ODO more positive, reflecting the shift to a respiration-dominated system. The horizontal distribution of δ13CDIC and δ18ODO in the epilimnion was heterogeneous. In general, the south basin had the most positive δ13CDIC, becoming more negative with increasing latitude, except in winter when the opposite pattern was observed. Areas of local variation were often observed near inflows. Clearly δ13CDIC and δ18ODO can show large spatial heterogeneity, as a result of varying metabolic balance coupled with inflow proximity and thus single point sampling to extrapolate whole lake metabolic patterns can result in error when modelling large lake systems Whilst we advise caution when using single point representation, we also show that this combined isotopic approach has potential to assist in constructing detailed lake carbon models.

Boltana S.,Autonomous University of Barcelona | Boltana S.,University of Stirling | Rey S.,Autonomous University of Barcelona | Roher N.,Autonomous University of Barcelona | And 9 more authors.
Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences | Year: 2013

Behavioural fever, defined as an acute change in thermal preference driven by pathogen recognition, has been reported in a variety of invertebrates and ectothermic vertebrates. It has been suggested, but so far not confirmed, that such changes in thermal regime favour the immune response and thus promote survival. Here, we show that zebrafish display behavioural fever that acts to promote extensive and highly specific temperature-dependent changes in the brain transcriptome. The observed coupling of the immune response to fever acts at the gene-environment level to promote a robust, highly specific time-dependent anti-viral response that, under viral infection, increases survival. Fish that are not offered a choice of temperatures and that therefore cannot express behavioural fever show decreased survival under viral challenge. This phenomenon provides an underlying explanation for the varied functional responses observed during systemic fever. Given the effects of behavioural fever on survival and the fact that it exists across considerable phylogenetic space, such immunity-environment interactions are likely to be under strong positive selection. © 2013 The Authors.

Webb L.,Land economics and Environment Research Group | Beaumont D.J.,Reserves Ecology | Nager R.G.,Institute of Biomedical and Life science | McCracken D.I.,Land economics and Environment Research Group
Bulletin of Entomological Research | Year: 2010

Very few studies have examined, at the field scale, the potential for faecal residues in the dung of avermectin-treated cattle to affect dung-breeding insects. The current study examined populations of dung beetles (Scarabaeidae: Aphodius) using pitfall traps baited with dung from untreated cattle on 26 fields across eight farms in southwest Scotland. The fields were grazed either by untreated cattle or by cattle treated with an avermectin product, i.e. doramectin or ivermectin. During the two-year study, significantly more beetles were trapped in fields grazed by treated cattle (n=9377 beetles) than in fields where cattle remained untreated (n=2483 beetles). Additional trials showed that beetles preferentially colonised dung of untreated versus doramectin-treated cattle. This may explain the higher captures of beetles in traps baited with dung of untreated cattle, which were located in fields of treated cattle. Given that Aphodius beetles avoided dung of treated cattle in the current study, the potential harmful effects of avermectin residues in cattle dung could be reduced through livestock management practices that maximise the availability of dung from untreated livestock in areas where avermectins are being used. © 2009 Cambridge University Press.

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