Current Offspring News and Events

Current Offspring News and Events, Offspring News Articles.
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Wolves, dogs and dingoes, oh my
Dogs are generally considered the first domesticated animal, while its ancestor is generally considered to be the wolf, but where the Australian dingo fits into this framework is still debated, according to a retired Penn State anthropologist. (2021-02-17)

Mother's heart health in pregnancy impacts child's heart health in adolescence
A mother's heart health while she is pregnant may have a significant impact on her child's cardiovascular health in early adolescence (ages 10 to 14), according to a new study. It is the first study to examine the implications of a mother's cardiovascular health during pregnancy for offspring health in the longer term. (2021-02-16)

All in the head? Brains adapt to support new species
Scientists studying forest dwelling butterflies in Central and South America have discovered that changes in the way animals perceive and process information from their environment can support the emergence of new species. The study led by the University of Bristol, and published today [9 February] in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), has implications for how new species might evolve and the underappreciated role of changes in the brain. (2021-02-08)

Flower diversity may mitigate insecticide effects on wild bees
A higher diversity of flowering plants increases the breeding success of wild bees and may help compensate for the negative effects of insecticides. This is what researchers from the Universities of Göttingen and Hohenheim, as well as the Julius Kühn Institute, have found in a large-scale experimental study. The results have been published in the scientific journal Ecology Letters. (2021-02-03)

Survival tip: Start at normal weight and slowly add pounds
People who start adulthood with a body mass index (BMI) in the normal range and move later in life to being overweight - but never obese - tend to live the longest, a new study suggests. Adults in this category lived longer than even those whose BMI stayed in the normal range throughout their life. Those who started adulthood as obese and continued to add weight had the highest mortality rate. (2021-02-02)

Specific bacteria in the gut prompt mother mice to neglect their pups
As scientists learn more about the microorganisms that colonize the body--collectively called the microbiota--one area of intense interest is the effect that these microbes can have on the brain. A new study led by Salk Institute scientists has identified a strain of E. coli bacteria that, when living in the guts of female mice, causes them to neglect their offspring. The findings were published January 29, 2021, in the journal Science Advances. (2021-01-29)

Loggerhead sea turtles lay eggs in multiple locations to improve reproductive success
Although loggerhead sea turtles return to the same beach where they hatched to lay their eggs, a new study finds individual females lay numerous clutches of eggs in locations miles apart from each other to increase the chance that some of their offspring will survive. (2021-01-28)

Fish sex organs boosted under high-CO2
Research from Australia has found that some species of fish will have higher reproductive capacity because of larger sex organs, under the more acidic oceans of the future. (2021-01-21)

Prenatal BPA exposure may contribute to the male bias of autism spectrum disorder
Autism has a higher prevalence in males than females. Bisphenol A (BPA) is a common chemical found in plastics, our food, and even the human placenta. Higher prenatal exposure to BPA is thought to increase the risk of autism. Researchers have, for the first time, identified autism candidate genes that may be responsible for the sex-specific effects of BPA. (2021-01-19)

With a little help from their friends, older birds breed successfully
The offspring of older animals often have a lower chance of survival because the parents are unable to take care of their young as well as they should. The Seychelles warbler is a cooperatively breeding bird species, meaning that parents often receive help when raising their offspring. A study led by biologists from the University of Groningen shows that the offspring of older females have better prospects when they are surrounded by helpers. (2021-01-19)

'Babysitters' provide boost to offspring of elderly birds
Young Seychelles warblers fare better if their elderly parents have help raising them, according to new research from the University of East Anglia (UEA) and the University of Groningen. Seychelles warblers, a cooperatively breeding species of songbird that lives in small family groups, share the care of young between parents and helpers. This collaboration can compensate for a decline in the ability of elderly parents to provide sufficient care, the researchers found. (2021-01-18)

Genital shape key to male flies' sexual success
Having genitals of a certain shape and size gives male flies a major reproductive advantage, new research shows. (2021-01-15)

Bees respond to wildfire aftermath by producing more female offspring
Researchers have found that the blue orchard bee, an important native pollinator, produces female offspring at higher rates in the aftermath of wildfire in forests. (2021-01-14)

Evolution in a test tube: these bacteria survive on deadly copper surfaces
The descendants of regular wild-type bacteria can evolve to survive for a long time on metallic copper surfaces that would usually kill them within a few minutes. An international research team led by Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) and the Bundeswehr Institute of Microbiology was able to produce these tiny survivalists in the lab and has been able to study them more closely. The team reports on its findings in Applied and Environmental Microbiology. (2021-01-13)

Scientists reveal how gut microbes can influence bone strength in mice
Gut microbes passed from female mice to their offspring, or shared between mice that live together, may influence the animals' bone mass, says a new study published today in eLife. (2021-01-12)

In-utero exposures associated with increased risk of thyroid cancer
A recent study shows that thyroid cancer is related to in-utero exposures. (2021-01-05)

Warmer springs mean more offspring for prothonotary warblers
Climate change contributes to gradually warming Aprils in southern Illinois, and at least one migratory bird species, the prothonotary warbler, is taking advantage of the heat. A new study analyzing 20 years of data found that the warblers start their egg-laying in southern Illinois significantly earlier in warmer springs. This increases the chances that the birds can raise two broods of offspring during the nesting season, researchers found. (2020-12-09)

Chemical memory in plants affects chances of offspring survival
Researchers at the University of Warwick have uncovered the mechanism that allows plants to pass on their 'memories' to offspring, which results in growth and developmental defects. (2020-12-01)

Warbler coloration shaped by evolution via distinct paths
Two genes that are important for the diverse colors and patterns of warbler plumage have evolved through two very different processes, according to a new study led by Penn State researchers. These evolutionary processes could help explain the rapid evolution of these songbirds into so many unique species. (2020-11-30)

Loyal couples in the rainforest
Coppery titi monkeys do not deceive their partners (2020-11-23)

Mother's touch lingers in her child's genes
Mothers leave their mark on their children in many ways - and Melbourne researchers have discovered a protein called SMCHD1 is involved in this 'imprinting' process. SMCHD1 switches certain genes off, altering how a cell behaves. The new research has revealed that when an egg cell (or oocyte) is fertilised by a sperm, the egg cell's SMCHD1 lingers within the developing embryo, switching off at least 10 different genes and impacting the embryo's development - which could potentially have a lifelong impact on the offspring. (2020-11-23)

Review examines sexual aggression in mammals
A recent review of published studies in non-human mammals examines 'sexual disturbance,' or male behavior towards a female around mating that can be costly for the female -- for example, that might inflict physical harm or cause mother-offspring separation. The findings are published in Mammal Review. (2020-11-18)

Study finds sexual lineage plays key role in transgenerational plasticity
A new pair of papers published in the Journal of Animal Ecology has shown that sexual lineage matters for how offspring receive adaptations from parents in stickleback fish. Researchers in the Bell lab studied how parents who were exposed to predators passed the behavioral information to their offspring in different ways based on sex. (2020-11-18)

Songbird parents evict young for their own benefit
Parents, you might know the feeling. When kids get pushy and demanding, it's a tempting fantasy to shove them out of the house and let them survive on their own. Of course, we'd never put our babies in harm's way, but according to new research from the University of Illinois, many songbird parents give nestlings the boot well before they're ready. (2020-11-16)

In mice, cadmium exposure during pregnancy linked to obesity in female offspring
In a mouse study aimed at modeling human exposure to the toxic metal cadmium, researchers found that female offspring of mice exposed to cadmium during pregnancy became obese in adulthood, developed fatty livers and could not process glucose normally. Male offspring were not affected in the same way. The study also sheds light on how cadmium exposure could affect mitochondrial function and developmental signaling pathways in the liver. (2020-11-12)

Chemicals in your living room cause diabetes
A new UC Riverside study shows flame retardants found in nearly every American home cause mice to give birth to offspring that become diabetic. (2020-11-10)

Jacky dragon moms' time in the sun affects their kids
A new study conducted at the University of New South Wales and published in the November/December 2020 issue of Physiological and Biochemical Zoology sheds light on a possible connection between an animal's environmental conditions and the traits of its offspring. (2020-11-10)

"Helper" ambrosia beetles share reproduction with their mother
A new study shows for the first time that Xyleborus affinis beetles are cooperative breeders, where females disperse to found new nests or stay to help their mother raise siblings, while also reproducing themselves. They grow an asexual Raffaella fungus alongside their nest galleries, apparently their only source of food. (2020-11-04)

Beetles cooperate in brood care
Ambrosia beetles are fascinating: they practice agriculture with fungi and they live in a highly developed social system. Biologist Peter Biedermann has now discovered new facts about them. (2020-11-04)

Mothers' lifestyle predicts when offspring will have first heart attack or stroke
Offspring of mothers with heart healthy lifestyles live nearly a decade longer without cardiovascular disease than those whose mothers have unhealthy lifestyles. That's the finding of a study published today in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology, a journal of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC).''Our study suggests that mothers are the primary gatekeepers of their children's health,'' said study author Dr. James Muchira of Vanderbilt University, Nashville and the University of Massachusetts, Boston. (2020-11-04)

Collecting sperm from Covid-19 patients
How does Covid-19 affect sperm and thus the next generation´s immune system? Norwegian researchers are collecting sperm to find the answer. (2020-10-30)

Water fleas on 'happy pills' have more offspring
Dopamine can trigger feelings of happiness in humans. Water fleas that are exposed to dopamine-regulating substances apparently gain several advantages. (2020-10-29)

Mothers pass on allergies to offspring, Singapore preclinical study shows
Maternal antibodies primed to react to specific allergens can cross the placenta, passing on transiently allergic reactions to offspring, according to new preclinical research from a collaborative study by the Agency for Science, Technology and Research, KK Women's and Children's Hospital, and Duke-NUS Medical School in Singapore. The finding hints at why infants exhibit allergies so early in life and suggests possible targets for intervention. (2020-10-29)

Fish exposed to even small amounts of estrogen produce fewer males
UC assistant professor Latonya Jackson conducted experiments with North American freshwater fish called least killifish. She found that fish exposed to estrogen in concentrations of 5 nanograms per liter in controlled lab conditions had fewer males and produced fewer offspring. Scientists have found estrogen at as much as 16 times that concentration in streams adjacent to sewage treatment plants. (2020-10-23)

Big-hearted corvids
Taking a look at generosity within the crow family reveals parallels with human evolution. Working together to raise offspring and increased tolerance towards group members contribute to the emergence of generous behavior among ravens, crows, magpies and company. Lisa Horn of the Department of Behavioral and Cognitive Biology found that the social life of corvids is a crucial factor for whether the birds act generously or not. The results have been published in ''eLife''. (2020-10-22)

Early trauma influences metabolism across generations
A study by the Brain Research Institute at UZH reveals that early trauma leads to changes in blood metabolites - similarly in mice and humans. Experiments with mice have show that these potentially harmful effects on health are also passed to the next generation. The researchers have identified a biological mechanism by which traumatic experiences become embedded in germ cells. (2020-10-15)

Wolves attached - Adult wolves miss their human handler in separation similar to dogs
One key feature of the dog's success is that they show attachment towards their owners. The origin of the ability to form these interspecific bonds is still unclear. It is widely accepted that the common ancestor of the dog and the grey wolf probably was a highly social species, that had an important role during domestication. By studying the dog's closest living relative, the grey wolf, we can have an insight how early domestication process of the dog was affected. (2020-10-14)

Prenatal cannabis exposure linked to cognitive deficits, altered behavior
Regular cannabis exposure in rats during pregnancy may cause their offspring to have long-term cognitive deficiencies, asocial behavior, and anxiety later in adulthood. (2020-10-14)

Pesticides and food scarcity dramatically reduce wild bee population
The loss of flowering plants and the widespread use of pesticides could be a double punch to wild bee populations. In a new study, researchers at the University of California, Davis, found that the combined threats reduced blue orchard bee reproduction by 57 percent and resulted in fewer female offspring. (2020-10-06)

For red abalone, resisting ocean acidification starts with mom
Red abalone mothers from California's North Coast give their offspring an energy boost when they're born that helps them better withstand ocean acidification compared to their captive, farmed counterparts, according to a study from the Bodega Marine Laboratory at the University of California, Davis. (2020-10-05)

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