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Bisphenol A (BPA) is a chemical that is used in a variety of consumer products, such as food storage containers, water bottles and certain resins. In previous studies, Cheryl Rosenfeld, an investigator in the Bond Life Sciences Center, along with other researchers at the University of Missouri, Westminster College and the Saint Louis Zoo, determined that BPA can disrupt sexual function and behavior in painted turtles. Now, the team has identified the genetic pathways that are altered as a result of BPA exposure during early development. Turtles are known as an “indicator species” because they can be used as a barometer for the health of the entire ecosystem. By understanding the possible effects endocrine disrupting chemicals have on turtles, researchers might be able to understand the possible effects such compounds have on other species. “Painted turtles lack sex chromosomes, and their gender is primarily determined by the incubation temperature of the egg during development—cooler temperatures yield more males while warmer temperatures yield more females,” said Rosenfeld, who also is an associate professor of biomedical sciences in MU’s College of Veterinary Medicine. “Previously, our research team found that exposure to BPA might override the brain development of male turtles and could induce female type behaviors. Our goal for this research was to determine the genetic pathways that correlate to the behavioral changes we identified.” Researchers examined whether BPA and ethinyl estradiol (EE), a hormone found in birth control pills, affect the global regulatory pathways of the brain. The same turtles from earlier behavioral testing were subjected to a gene expression analysis and 235 genes were identified as being altered in turtles exposed to BPA. The gene expression changes identified in the BPA group were found to significantly alter mitochondrial and ribosomal pathways. Mitochondria are the “power house” for cells and are responsible for breaking down and converting nutrients into usable energy. Ribosomal pathways produce proteins, which are needed to repair damage and direct chemical processes. Increased energy production in brain cells can thus affect cognitive flexibility and memory. “Metabolic pathways are not well documented in turtles. We were able to use human metabolic models to infer pathway changes in turtles,” said Scott Givan, associate director of MU Informatics Research Core Facility and a co-author of the study. “After analyzing the genes, we were able to link gene expression changes to behavioral changes.” Rosenfeld notes that this is the first study to show a correlation between changes in gene expression patterns and behavioral changes in turtles exposed to endocrine disrupting chemicals. “Correlation of altered gene expression patterns with the behavioral changes of the animals almost a year after the original exposure indicates that developmental exposure to BPA can lead to long-lasting and likely permanent effects on neurobehavioral responses,” Rosenfeld said. “Transcriptomic alterations in the brain of painted turtles (Chrysemys picta) developmentally exposed to bisphenol A or ethinyl estradiol,” recently was published in Physiological Genomics and is slated to be featured as a cover illustration on the journal’s website. Lindsey Manshack, a graduate student in Rosenfeld’s lab in MU’s Bond Life Sciences Center authored the study. Dawn Holliday, adjunct assistant professor of pathology and anatomical sciences in the MU School of Medicine and an associate professor of biology at Westminster College in Fulton, Mo., and Sharon Deem, director of the Saint Louis Zoo Institute for Conservation Medicine, contributed to the study. Funding was provided by Mizzou Advantage, the Office of Research and the Bond Life Sciences Center at the University of Missouri. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the funding agencies.


Bisphenol A (BPA) is a chemical that is used in a variety of consumer products, such as food storage containers, water bottles and certain resins. In previous studies, Cheryl Rosenfeld, an investigator in the Bond Life Sciences Center, along with other researchers at the University of Missouri, Westminster College and the Saint Louis Zoo, determined that BPA can disrupt sexual function and behavior in painted turtles. Now, the team has identified the genetic pathways that are altered as a result of BPA exposure during early development. Turtles are known as an “indicator species” because they can be used as a barometer for the health of the entire ecosystem. By understanding the possible effects endocrine disrupting chemicals have on turtles, researchers might be able to understand the possible effects such compounds have on other species. “Painted turtles lack sex chromosomes, and their gender is primarily determined by the incubation temperature of the egg during development—cooler temperatures yield more males while warmer temperatures yield more females,” said Rosenfeld, who also is an associate professor of biomedical sciences in MU’s College of Veterinary Medicine. “Previously, our research team found that exposure to BPA might override the brain development of male turtles and could induce female type behaviors. Our goal for this research was to determine the genetic pathways that correlate to the behavioral changes we identified.” Researchers examined whether BPA and ethinyl estradiol (EE), a hormone found in birth control pills, affect the global regulatory pathways of the brain. The same turtles from earlier behavioral testing were subjected to a gene expression analysis and 235 genes were identified as being altered in turtles exposed to BPA. The gene expression changes identified in the BPA group were found to significantly alter mitochondrial and ribosomal pathways. Mitochondria are the “power house” for cells and are responsible for breaking down and converting nutrients into usable energy. Ribosomal pathways produce proteins, which are needed to repair damage and direct chemical processes. Increased energy production in brain cells can thus affect cognitive flexibility and memory. “Metabolic pathways are not well documented in turtles. We were able to use human metabolic models to infer pathway changes in turtles,” said Scott Givan, associate director of MU Informatics Research Core Facility and a co-author of the study. “After analyzing the genes, we were able to link gene expression changes to behavioral changes.” Rosenfeld notes that this is the first study to show a correlation between changes in gene expression patterns and behavioral changes in turtles exposed to endocrine disrupting chemicals. “Correlation of altered gene expression patterns with the behavioral changes of the animals almost a year after the original exposure indicates that developmental exposure to BPA can lead to long-lasting and likely permanent effects on neurobehavioral responses,” Rosenfeld said. “Transcriptomic alterations in the brain of painted turtles (Chrysemys picta) developmentally exposed to bisphenol A or ethinyl estradiol,” recently was published in Physiological Genomics and is slated to be featured as a cover illustration on the journal’s website. Lindsey Manshack, a graduate student in Rosenfeld’s lab in MU’s Bond Life Sciences Center authored the study. Dawn Holliday, adjunct assistant professor of pathology and anatomical sciences in the MU School of Medicine and an associate professor of biology at Westminster College in Fulton, Mo., and Sharon Deem, director of the Saint Louis Zoo Institute for Conservation Medicine, contributed to the study. Funding was provided by Mizzou Advantage, the Office of Research and the Bond Life Sciences Center at the University of Missouri. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the funding agencies.


Painted turtle eggs were brought from a hatchery in Louisiana, candled to ensure embryo viability and then incubated at male-permissive temperatures in a bed of vermiculite. Those exposed to BPA developed deformities to testes that held female characteristics. Credit: Roger Meissen, MU Bond Life Sciences Center Bisphenol A (BPA) is a chemical that is used in a variety of consumer products, such as food storage containers, water bottles and certain resins. In previous studies, Cheryl Rosenfeld, an investigator in the Bond Life Sciences Center, along with other researchers at the University of Missouri, Westminster College and the Saint Louis Zoo, determined that BPA can disrupt sexual function and behavior in painted turtles. Now, the team has identified the genetic pathways that are altered as a result of BPA exposure during early development. Turtles are known as an "indicator species" because they can be used as a barometer for the health of the entire ecosystem. By understanding the possible effects endocrine disrupting chemicals have on turtles, researchers might be able to understand the possible effects such compounds have on other species. "Painted turtles lack sex chromosomes, and their gender is primarily determined by the incubation temperature of the egg during development—cooler temperatures yield more males while warmer temperatures yield more females," said Rosenfeld, who also is an associate professor of biomedical sciences in MU's College of Veterinary Medicine. "Previously, our research team found that exposure to BPA might override the brain development of male turtles and could induce female type behaviors. Our goal for this research was to determine the genetic pathways that correlate to the behavioral changes we identified." Researchers examined whether BPA and ethinyl estradiol (EE), a hormone found in birth control pills, affect the global regulatory pathways of the brain. The same turtles from earlier behavioral testing were subjected to a gene expression analysis and 235 genes were identified as being altered in turtles exposed to BPA. The gene expression changes identified in the BPA group were found to significantly alter mitochondrial and ribosomal pathways. Mitochondria are the "power house" for cells and are responsible for breaking down and converting nutrients into usable energy. Ribosomal pathways produce proteins, which are needed to repair damage and direct chemical processes. Increased energy production in brain cells can thus affect cognitive flexibility and memory. "Metabolic pathways are not well documented in turtles. We were able to use human metabolic models to infer pathway changes in turtles," said Scott Givan, associate director of MU Informatics Research Core Facility and a co-author of the study. "After analyzing the genes, we were able to link gene expression changes to behavioral changes." Rosenfeld notes that this is the first study to show a correlation between changes in gene expression patterns and behavioral changes in turtles exposed to endocrine disrupting chemicals. "Correlation of altered gene expression patterns with the behavioral changes of the animals almost a year after the original exposure indicates that developmental exposure to BPA can lead to long-lasting and likely permanent effects on neurobehavioral responses," Rosenfeld said. "Transcriptomic alterations in the brain of painted turtles (Chrysemys picta) developmentally exposed to bisphenol A or ethinyl estradiol," recently was published in Physiological Genomics and is slated to be featured as a cover illustration on the journal's website. Lindsey Manshack, a graduate student in Rosenfeld's lab in MU's Bond Life Sciences Center authored the study. Dawn Holliday, adjunct assistant professor of pathology and anatomical sciences in the MU School of Medicine and an associate professor of biology at Westminster College in Fulton, Mo., and Sharon Deem, director of the Saint Louis Zoo Institute for Conservation Medicine, contributed to the study. Funding was provided by Mizzou Advantage, the Office of Research and the Bond Life Sciences Center at the University of Missouri. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the funding agencies. Explore further: BPA can disrupt painted turtles' brain development could be a population health concern


Bisphenol A (BPA) is a chemical that is used in a variety of consumer products, such as food storage containers, water bottles and certain resins. In previous studies, Cheryl Rosenfeld, an investigator in the Bond Life Sciences Center, along with other researchers at the University of Missouri, Westminster College and the Saint Louis Zoo, determined that BPA can disrupt sexual function and behavior in painted turtles. Now, the team has identified the genetic pathways that are altered as a result of BPA exposure during early development. Turtles are known as an "indicator species" because they can be used as a barometer for the health of the entire ecosystem. By understanding the possible effects endocrine disrupting chemicals have on turtles, researchers might be able to understand the possible effects such compounds have on other species. "Painted turtles lack sex chromosomes, and their gender is primarily determined by the incubation temperature of the egg during development--cooler temperatures yield more males while warmer temperatures yield more females," said Rosenfeld, who also is an associate professor of biomedical sciences in MU's College of Veterinary Medicine. "Previously, our research team found that exposure to BPA might override the brain development of male turtles and could induce female type behaviors. Our goal for this research was to determine the genetic pathways that correlate to the behavioral changes we identified." Researchers examined whether BPA and ethinyl estradiol (EE), a hormone found in birth control pills, affect the global regulatory pathways of the brain. The same turtles from earlier behavioral testing were subjected to a gene expression analysis and 235 genes were identified as being altered in turtles exposed to BPA. The gene expression changes identified in the BPA group were found to significantly alter mitochondrial and ribosomal pathways. Mitochondria are the "power house" for cells and are responsible for breaking down and converting nutrients into usable energy. Ribosomal pathways produce proteins, which are needed to repair damage and direct chemical processes. Increased energy production in brain cells can thus affect cognitive flexibility and memory. "Metabolic pathways are not well documented in turtles. We were able to use human metabolic models to infer pathway changes in turtles," said Scott Givan, associate director of MU Informatics Research Core Facility and a co-author of the study. "After analyzing the genes, we were able to link gene expression changes to behavioral changes." Rosenfeld notes that this is the first study to show a correlation between changes in gene expression patterns and behavioral changes in turtles exposed to endocrine disrupting chemicals. "Correlation of altered gene expression patterns with the behavioral changes of the animals almost a year after the original exposure indicates that developmental exposure to BPA can lead to long-lasting and likely permanent effects on neurobehavioral responses," Rosenfeld said. "Transcriptomic alterations in the brain of painted turtles (Chrysemys picta) developmentally exposed to bisphenol A or ethinyl estradiol," recently was published in Physiological Genomics and is slated to be featured as a cover illustration on the journal's website. Lindsey Manshack, a graduate student in Rosenfeld's lab in MU's Bond Life Sciences Center authored the study. Dawn Holliday, adjunct assistant professor of pathology and anatomical sciences in the MU School of Medicine and an associate professor of biology at Westminster College in Fulton, Mo., and Sharon Deem, director of the Saint Louis Zoo Institute for Conservation Medicine, contributed to the study. Funding was provided by Mizzou Advantage, the Office of Research and the Bond Life Sciences Center at the University of Missouri. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the funding agencies. Editor's Note: For more information, please see: https:/


News Article | May 17, 2017
Site: www.futurity.org

Exposure to the chemical Bisphenol A may permanently alter the genes of painted turtles, a new study suggests. BPA is a chemical that is used in a variety of consumer products, such as food storage containers, water bottles and certain resins. In previous studies, Cheryl Rosenfeld, an investigator in the University of Missouri Bond Life Sciences Center, along with colleagues determined that BPA can disrupt sexual function and behavior in painted turtles. Now, the team has identified the genetic pathways that BPA exposure alters during early development. Turtles are known as an “indicator species” because they can be a barometer for the health of the entire ecosystem. By understanding the possible effects endocrine disrupting chemicals have on turtles, researchers might be able to understand the possible effects such compounds have on other species. “Painted turtles lack sex chromosomes, and their gender is primarily determined by the incubation temperature of the egg during development—cooler temperatures yield more males while warmer temperatures yield more females,” says Rosenfeld, who also is an associate professor of biomedical sciences in the University of Missouri’s College of Veterinary Medicine. “Previously, our research team found that exposure to BPA might override the brain development of male turtles and could induce female type behaviors. Our goal for this research was to determine the genetic pathways that correlate to the behavioral changes we identified.” Researchers examined whether BPA and ethinyl estradiol (EE), a hormone found in birth control pills, affect the global regulatory pathways of the brain. The same turtles from earlier behavioral testing were subjected to a gene expression analysis and 235 genes were identified as being altered in turtles exposed to BPA. The gene expression changes identified in the BPA group were found to significantly alter mitochondrial and ribosomal pathways. Mitochondria are the “power house” for cells and are responsible for breaking down and converting nutrients into usable energy. Ribosomal pathways produce proteins, which are needed to repair damage and direct chemical processes. Increased energy production in brain cells can thus affect cognitive flexibility and memory. “Metabolic pathways are not well documented in turtles. We were able to use human metabolic models to infer pathway changes in turtles,” says Scott Givan, associate director of the university’s Informatics Research Core Facility and a coauthor of the study, published in Physiological Genomics. “After analyzing the genes, we were able to link gene expression changes to behavioral changes.” Rosenfeld notes that this is the first study to show a correlation between changes in gene expression patterns and behavioral changes in turtles exposed to endocrine disrupting chemicals. “Correlation of altered gene expression patterns with the behavioral changes of the animals almost a year after the original exposure indicates that developmental exposure to BPA can lead to long-lasting and likely permanent effects on neurobehavioral responses,” Rosenfeld says. Others from the University of Missouri’s Bond Life Sciences Center, Westminster College, and the Saint Louis Zoo Institute for Conservation Medicine contributed to this research. Mizzou Advantage, the Office of Research, and the Bond Life Sciences Center at the University of Missouri provided funding. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the funding agencies.


News Article | May 17, 2017
Site: www.sciencedaily.com

Bisphenol A (BPA) is a chemical that is used in a variety of consumer products, such as food storage containers, water bottles and certain resins. In previous studies, Cheryl Rosenfeld, an investigator in the Bond Life Sciences Center, along with other researchers at the University of Missouri, Westminster College and the Saint Louis Zoo, determined that BPA can disrupt sexual function and behavior in painted turtles. Now, the team has identified the genetic pathways that are altered as a result of BPA exposure during early development. Turtles are known as an "indicator species" because they can be used as a barometer for the health of the entire ecosystem. By understanding the possible effects endocrine disrupting chemicals have on turtles, researchers might be able to understand the possible effects such compounds have on other species. "Painted turtles lack sex chromosomes, and their gender is primarily determined by the incubation temperature of the egg during development--cooler temperatures yield more males while warmer temperatures yield more females," said Rosenfeld, who also is an associate professor of biomedical sciences in MU's College of Veterinary Medicine. "Previously, our research team found that exposure to BPA might override the brain development of male turtles and could induce female type behaviors. Our goal for this research was to determine the genetic pathways that correlate to the behavioral changes we identified." Researchers examined whether BPA and ethinyl estradiol (EE), a hormone found in birth control pills, affect the global regulatory pathways of the brain. The same turtles from earlier behavioral testing were subjected to a gene expression analysis and 235 genes were identified as being altered in turtles exposed to BPA. The gene expression changes identified in the BPA group were found to significantly alter mitochondrial and ribosomal pathways. Mitochondria are the "power house" for cells and are responsible for breaking down and converting nutrients into usable energy. Ribosomal pathways produce proteins, which are needed to repair damage and direct chemical processes. Increased energy production in brain cells can thus affect cognitive flexibility and memory. "Metabolic pathways are not well documented in turtles. We were able to use human metabolic models to infer pathway changes in turtles," said Scott Givan, associate director of MU Informatics Research Core Facility and a co-author of the study. "After analyzing the genes, we were able to link gene expression changes to behavioral changes." Rosenfeld notes that this is the first study to show a correlation between changes in gene expression patterns and behavioral changes in turtles exposed to endocrine disrupting chemicals. "Correlation of altered gene expression patterns with the behavioral changes of the animals almost a year after the original exposure indicates that developmental exposure to BPA can lead to long-lasting and likely permanent effects on neurobehavioral responses," Rosenfeld said. "Transcriptomic alterations in the brain of painted turtles (Chrysemys picta) developmentally exposed to bisphenol A or ethinyl estradiol," recently was published in Physiological Genomics and is slated to be featured as a cover illustration on the journal's website. Lindsey Manshack, a graduate student in Rosenfeld's lab in MU's Bond Life Sciences Center authored the study. Dawn Holliday, adjunct assistant professor of pathology and anatomical sciences in the MU School of Medicine and an associate professor of biology at Westminster College in Fulton, Mo., and Sharon Deem, director of the Saint Louis Zoo Institute for Conservation Medicine, contributed to the study. Funding was provided by Mizzou Advantage, the Office of Research and the Bond Life Sciences Center at the University of Missouri. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the funding agencies.


Deem S.L.,Saint Louis Zoo Institute for Conservation Medicine | Fevre E.M.,University of Liverpool | Fevre E.M.,Kenya International Livestock Research Institute | Kinnaird M.,Mpala Research Center | And 7 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2015

Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) is a recently identified virus causing severe viral respiratory illness in people. Little is known about the reservoir in the Horn of Africa. In Kenya, where no human MERS cases have been reported, our survey of 335 dromedary camels, representing nine herds in Laikipia County, showed a high seroprevalence (46.9%) to MERS-CoV antibodies. Between herd differences were present (14.3%- 82.9%), but was not related to management type or herd isolation. Further research should focus on identifying similarity between MERS-CoV viral isolates in Kenya and clinical isolates from the Middle East and elsewhere. © 2015 Deem et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


Levin I.I.,University of Missouri-St. Louis | Levin I.I.,WildCare Institute | Zwiers P.,University of Missouri-St. Louis | Zwiers P.,Francis Marion University | And 16 more authors.
Conservation Biology | Year: 2013

Haemosporidian parasites in the genus Plasmodium were recently detected through molecular screening in the Galapagos Penguin (Spheniscus mendiculus). We summarized results of an archipelago-wide screen of 3726 endemic birds representing 22 species for Plasmodium spp. through a combination of molecular and microscopy techniques. Three additional Plasmodium lineages were present in Galapagos. Lineage A-infected penguins, Yellow Warblers (Setophaga petechia aureola), and one Medium Ground Finch (Geospiza fortis) was detected at multiple sites in multiple years. The other 3 lineages were each detected at one site and at one time; apparently, they were transient infections of parasites not established on the archipelago. No gametocytes were found in blood smears of infected individuals; thus, endemic Galapagos birds may be dead-end hosts for these Plasmodium lineages. Determining when and how parasites and pathogens arrive in Galapagos is key to developing conservation strategies to prevent and mitigate the effects of introduced diseases. To assess the potential for Plasmodium parasites to arrive via migratory birds, we analyzed blood samples from 438 North American breeding Bobolinks (Dolichonyx oryzivorus), the only songbird that regularly migrates through Galapagos. Two of the ephemeral Plasmodium lineages (B and C) found in Galapagos birds matched parasite sequences from Bobolinks. Although this is not confirmation that Bobolinks are responsible for introducing these lineages, evidence points to higher potential arrival rates of avian pathogens than previously thought. © 2013 Society for Conservation Biology.


Adamovicz L.,North Carolina State University | Bronson E.,Maryland Zoo in Baltimore | Barrett K.,Maryland Zoo in Baltimore | Deem S.L.,Saint Louis Zoo Institute for Conservation Medicine
Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine | Year: 2015

Health data for free-living eastern box turtles (Terrapene carolina carolina) at the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore were analyzed. One hundred and eighteen turtles were captured on or near zoo grounds over the course of 15 yr (1996-2011), with recapture of many individuals leading to 208 total evaluations. Of the 118 individuals, 61 were male, 50 were female, and 7 were of undetermined sex. Of the 208 captures, 188 were healthy, and 20 were sick or injured. Complete health evaluations were performed on 30 turtles with physical examination records, complete blood counts (CBCs), and plasma biochemistry profiles. Eight animals were sampled more than once, yielding 40 total samples for complete health evaluations of these 30 individuals. The 40 samples were divided into healthy (N = 29) and sick (N = 11) groups based on clinical findings on physical examination. Samples from healthy animals were further divided into male (N = 17) and female (N = 12) groups. CBC and biochemistry profile parameters were compared between sick and healthy groups and between healthy males and females. Sick turtles had lower albumin, globulin, total protein (TP), calcium, phosphorous, sodium, and potassium than healthy animals. Sick turtles also had higher heterophil to lymphocyte ratios. Healthy female turtles had higher leukocyte count, eosinophil count, total solids, TP, globulin, cholesterol, calcium, and phosphorous than healthy males. Banked plasma from all 40 samples was tested for antibodies to Mycoplasma agassizii and Mycoplasma testudineum via enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. One sample from a clinically healthy female was antibody positive for M. agassizii; none were positive for M. testudineum. This study provides descriptive health data for eastern box turtles and CBC and biochemistry profile information for T. carolina carolina at and near the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore. It also reports low serologic evidence of exposure to mycoplasmosis. Copyright 2015 by American Association of Zoo Veterinarians.


PubMed | National Institute for Public Health and the Environment, Massey University, Kenya International Livestock Research Institute, Erasmus Medical Center and 2 more.
Type: Journal Article | Journal: PloS one | Year: 2015

Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) is a recently identified virus causing severe viral respiratory illness in people. Little is known about the reservoir in the Horn of Africa. In Kenya, where no human MERS cases have been reported, our survey of 335 dromedary camels, representing nine herds in Laikipia County, showed a high seroprevalence (46.9%) to MERS-CoV antibodies. Between herd differences were present (14.3%- 82.9%), but was not related to management type or herd isolation. Further research should focus on identifying similarity between MERS-CoV viral isolates in Kenya and clinical isolates from the Middle East and elsewhere.

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