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Fort Pierce, FL, United States

Baeza J.A.,Smithsonian Marine Station at Fort Pierce | Baeza J.A.,Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute | Baeza J.A.,Catolica del Norte University
Naturwissenschaften | Year: 2010

Sex allocation theory predicts female-biased sex allocation for simultaneous hermaphrodites with a monogamous mating system. Mating systems theory predicts that monogamy is advantageous in environments where refuges are discrete, scarce, relatively small, and when predation risk is high outside of these refuges. These predictions were tested with the Caribbean shrimp Lysmata pederseni, a simultaneous hermaphrodite which has an early male phase and lives inside tubes of the sponge Callyspongia vaginalis. This host sponge is a scarce resource that, together with the high predation risk typical of tropical environments, should favor monogamy in the shrimp. Field observations demonstrated that shrimps were frequently encountered as pairs within these tube sponges. Pairs were equally likely to comprise two hermaphrodites or one hermaphrodite and one male. Several of these pairs were observed for long periods of time in the field. Experiments demonstrated that hermaphrodites tolerated other hermaphrodites but not males in their host sponge. These results suggest that pairs of hermaphroditic L. pederseni are socially monogamous; they share the same host individual and might reproduce exclusively with their host partners for long periods of time. Nevertheless, males appeared less likely to establish long-term associations with hermaphrodites as indicated by the rate of their disappearance from their hosts (greater than that of hermaphrodites). Sex allocation was female biased in monogamous hermaphrodites. On average, hermaphrodites invested 34 times more to female than to male reproductive structures. Monogamy and female-biased sex allocation seem to be evolutionary consequences of adopting a symbiotic lifestyle in simultaneous hermaphrodites. © 2010 Springer-Verlag. Source


Baeza J.A.,Smithsonian Marine Station at Fort Pierce | Baeza J.A.,Catolica del Norte University
Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution | Year: 2013

The 'Tomlinson-Ghiselin' hypothesis (TGh) predicts that outcrossing simultaneous hermaphroditism (SH) is advantageous when population density is low because the probability of finding sexual partners is negligible. In shrimps from the family Lysmatidae, Bauer's historical contingency hypothesis (HCh) suggests that SH evolved in an ancestral tropical species that adopted a symbiotic lifestyle with, e.g., sea anemones and became a specialized fish-cleaner. Restricted mobility of shrimps due to their association with a host, and hence, reduced probability of encountering mating partners, would have favored SH. The HCh is a special case of the TGh. Herein, I examined within a phylogenetic framework whether the TGh/HCh explains the origin of SH in shrimps. A phylogeny of caridean broken-back shrimps in the families Lysmatidae, Barbouriidae, Merguiidae was first developed using nuclear and mitochondrial makers. Complete evidence phylogenetic analyses using maximum likelihood (ML) and Bayesian inference (BI) demonstrated that Lysmatidae. +. Barbouriidae are monophyletic. In turn, Merguiidae is sister to the Lysmatidae. +. Barbouriidae. ML and BI ancestral character-state reconstruction in the resulting phylogenetic trees indicated that the ancestral Lysmatidae was either gregarious or lived in small groups and was not symbiotic. Four different evolutionary transitions from a free-living to a symbiotic lifestyle occurred in shrimps. Therefore, the evolution of SH in shrimps cannot be explained by the TGh/HCh; reduced probability of encountering mating partners in an ancestral species due to its association with a sessile host did not favor SH in the Lysmatidae. It is proposed that two conditions acting together in the past; low male mating opportunities and brooding constraints, might have favored SH in the ancestral Lysmatidae. +. Barbouridae. Additional studies on the life history and phylogenetics of broken-back shrimps are needed to understand the evolution of SH in the ecologically diverse Caridea. © 2013 Elsevier Inc. Source


Baeza J.A.,Smithsonian Marine Station at Fort Pierce | Baeza J.A.,Catolica del Norte University | Fuentes M.S.,Algenol Biofuels Inc.
Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society | Year: 2013

Of paramount importance to studies that profit from molecular trees is the accuracy and robustness of the reconstructed phylogenies. Causes of systematic error that can mislead phylogenetic methods include nuclear copies of mitochondrial DNA (numts) and low phylogenetic informativeness (PI). Herein, numts and PI were explored in three mitochondrial genes commonly used for phylogenetic reconstruction: 16S, 12S, and cytochrome c oxidase I (COI). Shrimps from the genera Lysmata, Exhippolysmata, and Merguia were used as a model system. The existence of: (1) multiple bands on gels of COI and 12S polymerase chain reaction (PCR) products from various species; (2) double peaks, background noise, and ambiguity in sequence chromatograms of COI and 12SPCR products that produced a single clear band in other species; and (3) indels, stop codons, and considerable composition bias in COI-like cloned sequences of one problematic species (Lysmata seticaudata), was interpreted as evidence of pervasive non-functional nuclear copies of mitochondrial DNA (numts) of the targeted COI (and probably 12S) mtDNA fragment. The information content of the three mtDNA markers studied was investigated using PI profiling, spectral analysis, and neighbour-nets. Marker-specific PI profiles suggested that the COI marker has the highest information content and greatest power for resolving both shallow and deep nodes in trees depicting the phylogenetic relationship among the species studied. Nonetheless, spectral analysis of splits and neighbour-nets suggested that the 16S and 12S markers were equally or even more powerful than the COI marker for resolving nodes at all phylogenetic levels. Altogether, these analyses suggest that all three mtDNA markers are equally useful for resolving phylogenetic relationships in the shrimps studied, and that PI profiling is not necessarily useful to estimate overall gene utility. A 'total-evidence' phylogenetic analysis that included 34 species and used a concatenated data set of 1403 characters (from reliable 16S, 12S and COI sequences), demonstrated that the genus Lysmata is paraphyletic, and that the monophyletic clade comprising species of Lysmata and Exhippolysmata can be divided into four well-supported subclades (Neotropical, Cleaner, Cosmopolitan, and Morphovariable). © 2013 The Linnean Society of London. Source


Sneed J.M.,Smithsonian Marine Station at Fort Pierce
ISME Journal | Year: 2015

Crustose coralline algae (CCA) are important components of many marine ecosystems. They aid in reef accretion and stabilization, create habitat for other organisms, contribute to carbon sequestration and are important settlement substrata for a number of marine invertebrates. Despite their ecological importance, little is known about the bacterial communities associated with CCA or whether differences in bacterial assemblages may have ecological implications. This study examined the bacterial communities on four different species of CCA collected in Belize using bacterial tag-encoded FLX amplicon pyrosequencing of the V1–V3 region of the 16S rDNA. CCA were dominated by Alphaproteobacteria, Gammaproteobacteria and Actinomycetes. At the operational taxonomic unit (OTU) level, each CCA species had a unique bacterial community that was significantly different from all other CCA species. Hydrolithon boergesenii and Titanoderma prototypum, CCA species that facilitate larval settlement in multiple corals, had higher abundances of OTUs related to bacteria that inhibit the growth and/or biofilm formation of coral pathogens. Fewer coral larvae settle on the surfaces of Paragoniolithon solubile and Porolithon pachydermum. These CCA species had higher abundances of OTUs related to known coral pathogens and cyanobacteria. Coral larvae may be able to use the observed differences in bacterial community composition on CCA species to assess the suitability of these substrata for settlement and selectively settle on CCA species that contain beneficial bacteria. © 2015 International Society for Microbial Ecology Source


Puglisi M.P.,Chicago State University | Sneed J.M.,Smithsonian Marine Station at Fort Pierce | Sharp K.H.,Eckerd College | Ritson-Williams R.,University of Hawaii at Manoa | Paul V.J.,Smithsonian Marine Station at Fort Pierce
Natural Product Reports | Year: 2014

This review covers the recent marine chemical ecology literature for benthic bacteria and cyanobacteria, macroalgae, sponges, cnidarians, molluscs, other benthic invertebrates, and fish. © the Partner Organisations 2014. Source

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