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Zhang L.,Yunnan Normal University | Zhang L.,Key Laboratory of Yunnan Province for Biomass Energy and Environment Biotechnology | Wang R.,Yunnan Normal University | Zhu W.-L.,Yunnan Normal University | And 10 more authors.
Animal Biology | Year: 2011

Environmental cues play important roles in the regulation of an animal's physiology and behavior. The purpose of the present study was to test the hypothesis that ambient temperature was a cue to induce adjustments in body mass, energy intake and thermogenic capacity, associated with the role of the liver for adaptive thermogenesis in tree shrews (Tupaia belangeri), a unique species of small mammals in the Oriental realm. Many targets were measured, such as the state 3 and the state 4 of mitochondrial respiration, the protein content of mitochondria of the liver in T. belangeri under prolonged cold acclimation (5±1°C, 12L : 12D light cycle) during different times [0 d (control), 7 d, 14 d, 21 d, 28 d]. We found the total protein, mitochondrial protein, and the state 3 and the state 4 of mitochondrial respiration of the liver greatly increased by 39.9%, 39.3%, 84.9% and 181.1% after 28 d in T. belangeri when exposed to cold, as compared with the controls, respectively. Thus, the liver plays a key role in the adaptive thermogenesis during cold acclimation in tree shrews; we believed that evidence from the physiological ecology is equally supportive of the island origin of tree shrews, T. belangeri. © 2011 BRILL.

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