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New Year Address of Zoological Research
Wai-Yee Chan, Yong-Gang Yao
Zoological Research    2017, 38 (1): 1-1.   DOI: 10.13918/j.issn.2095-8137.2017.001
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Food restriction affects maternal investment but not neonate phenotypes in a viviparous lizard
Yang Wang, Zhi-Gao Zeng, Liang Ma, Shu-Ran Li, Wei-Guo Du
Zoological Research    2017, 38 (2): 81-87.   DOI: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2017.011
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Food availability significantly affects an animal's energy metabolism, and thus its phenotype, survival, and reproduction. Maternal and offspring responses to food conditions are critical for understanding population dynamics and life-history evolution of a species. In this study, we conducted food manipulation experiments in field enclosures to identify the effect of food restriction on female reproductive traits and postpartum body condition, as well as on hatchling phenotypes, in a lacertid viviparous lizard from the Inner Mongolian desert steppe of China. Females under low-food availability treatment (LFT) had poorer immune function and body condition compared with those under high-food availability treatment (HFT). The food availability treatments significantly affected the litter size and litter mass of the females, but not their gestation period in captivity or brood success, or the body size, sprint speed, and sex ratio of the neonates. Females from the LFT group had smaller litter sizes and, therefore, lower litter mass than those from the HFT group. These results suggest that female racerunners facing food restriction lay fewer offspring with unchanged body size and locomotor performance, and incur a cost in the form of poor postpartum body condition and immune function. The flexibility of maternal responses to variable food availability represents an important life strategy that could enhance the resistance of lizards to unpredictable environmental change.
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Cited: Baidu(3)
Contents
Zoological Research    2016, 37 (6): 315-368.  
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Zoological Research    2017, 38 (1): 1-54.  
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The role of wildlife (wild birds) in the global transmission of antimicrobial resistance genes
Jing Wang, Zhen-Bao Ma, Zhen-Ling Zeng, Xue-Wen Yang, Ying Huang, Jian-Hua Liu
Zoological Research    2017, 38 (2): 55-80.   DOI: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2017.003
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Antimicrobial resistance is an urgent global health challenge in human and veterinary medicine. Wild animals are not directly exposed to clinically relevant antibiotics; however, antibacterial resistance in wild animals has been increasingly reported worldwide in parallel to the situation in human and veterinary medicine. This underlies the complexity of bacterial resistance in wild animals and the possible interspecies transmission between humans, domestic animals, the environment, and wildlife. This review summarizes the current data on expanded-spectrum β-lactamase (ESBL), AmpC β-lactamase, carbapenemase, and colistin resistance genes in Enterobacteriaceae isolates of wildlife origin. The aim of this review is to better understand the important role of wild animals as reservoirs and vectors in the global dissemination of crucial clinical antibacterial resistance. In this regard, continued surveillance is urgently needed worldwide.
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Cited: Baidu(6)
A new cave species of the Genus Triplophysa from Yunnan, China
Hong-Fu YANG, Wei-Xian LI, Zi-Ming CHEN
Zoological Research    2016, 37 (5): 297-300.   DOI: 10.13918/j.issn.2095-8137.2016.5.296
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In September and October 2015, a new species of the family Nemacheilidae, Triplophysa tianxingensis sp. nov., was discovered from underground water in Qiubei County, Yunnan Province, China. It can be distinguished from all other troglobiotic Triplophysa species occurring in Yunnan by the following combination of characters: eyes small, a little degenerated; barbels longer; ventral profiles greatly convex; pectoral fin short, attaining a third of the distance from the pectoral-fin base to pelvic fin base; body with many brown blotches; caudal peduncle with fin fold; caudal fin shallowly forked, and free posterior chamber of swim bladder cylindrical.
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Zoological Research    2017, 38 (2): 55-114.  
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The geographical distribution of grey wolves (Canis lupus) in China: a systematic review
Lu WANG, Ya-Ping MA, Qi-Jun ZHOU, Ya-Ping ZHANG, Peter SAVOLAINEN, Guo-Dong WANG
Zoological Research    2016, 37 (6): 315-326.   DOI: 10.13918/j.issn.2095-8137.2016.6.315
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The grey wolf (Canis lupus) is one of the most widely distributed terrestrial mammals, and its distribution and ecology in Europe and North America are largely well described. However, the distribution of grey wolves in southern China is still highly controversial. Several well-known western literatures stated that there were no grey wolves in southern China, while the presence of grey wolves across China has been indicated in A Guide to the Mammals of China, published by Princeton University Press. It is essential to solve this discrepancy since dogs may have originated from grey wolves in southern China. Therefore, we systematically investigated Chinese literatures about wild animal surveys and identified more than 100 articles and books that included information of the distribution of grey wolves in China. We also surveyed the collections of three Chinese natural museums and found 26 grey wolf skins specimens collected across China. Moreover, we investigated the fossil records in China and identified 25 archaeological sites with wolf remains including south China. In conclusion, with the comprehensive summary of Chinese literatures, museum specimens and fossil records, we demonstrate that grey wolves do distribute across all parts of the Chinese mainland, including the most southern parts.

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Cited: Baidu(4)
Molecular characterization and functional analysis of a piscidin gene in large yellow croaker (Larimichthys crocea)
Jing YANG, Xin-Jiang LU, Fang-Chao CHAI, Jiong CHEN
Zoological Research    2016, 37 (6): 347-355.   DOI: 10.13918/j.issn.2095-8137.2016.6.347
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The piscidin family, which includes potent antimicrobial peptides with broad-spectrum activity, plays an important role in the innate immune system of fish. In this study, we cloned piscidin-5-like type 3 (Lcpis5lt3) in large yellow croaker (Larimichthys crocea). Multiple alignments with other known piscidins revealed amino acid conservation throughout the fish, especially at the signal peptide (22 amino acids). The phylogenetic tree confirmed that Lcpis5lt3 and large yellow croaker piscidin-5-like proteins were grouped together to form a branch. Quantitative real-time PCR revealed that Lcpis5lt3 was expressed in a wide range of tissues, including the brain, muscle, gill, head kidney, intestine, kidney, liver, and spleen. The highest mRNA expression level of Lcpis5lt3 was found in the spleen. After Vibrio alginolyticus infection, mRNA expression was rapidly upregulated in the liver, head kidney, gill, kidney, and intestine at 4, 8, 12, and 24 h post infection (hpi), whereas there were no significant changes in the spleen. The antimicrobial spectrum showed that the synthetic mature peptide of Lcpis5lt3 exhibited different activity in vitro against various bacteria, such as Aeromonas hydrophila, V. anguillarum, V. alginolyticus, V. parahaemolyticus, Staphylococcus aureus, and Listeria monocytogenes. In addition, survival rates from the in vivo assay indicated that the synthetic peptide of Lcpis5lt3 increased the survival rate of large yellow croaker after V. alginolyticus challenge, resulting in a decline in bacterial burden and mRNA expression levels of interleukin-1β, interleukin-10, and tumor necrosis factor-α. These data suggest that Lcpis5lt3 plays an important role in innate immunity in large yellow croaker and might represent a potential therapeutic agent against pathogen invasion.
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Current understanding on the roles of gut microbiota in fish disease and immunity
Jin-Bo Xiong, Li Nie, Jiong Chen
Zoological Research    2019, 40 (2): 70-76.   DOI: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2018.069
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Intensive aquaculture has increased the severity and frequency of fish diseases. Given the functional importance of gut microbiota in various facets of host physiology, modulation of this microbiota is a feasible strategy to mitigate emerging diseases in aquaculture. To achieve this, a fundamental understanding of the interplay among fish health, microbiota, and invading pathogens is required. This mini-review focuses on current knowledge regarding the associations between fish diseases, dysbiosis of gut microbiota, and immune responses. Furthermore, updated research on fish disease from an ecological perspective is discussed, including colonization resistance imposed by commensals and strategies used by pathogens to overcome resistance. We also propose several directions for future research, such as exploration of the causal links between fish diseases and specific taxa, and identification of universal gut microbial biomarkers for rapid disease diagnosis.
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FasParser: a package for manipulating sequence data
Yan-Bo Sun
Zoological Research    2017, 38 (2): 110-112.   DOI: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2017.017
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A computer software package called ‘FasParser’ was developed for manipulating sequence data. It can be used on personal computers to perform series of analyses, including counting and viewing differences between two sequences at both DNA and codon levels, identifying overlapping regions between two alignments, sorting of sequences according to their IDs or lengths, concatenating sequences of multiple loci for a particular set of samples, translating nucleotide sequences to amino acids, and constructing alignments in several different formats, as well as some extracting and filtrating of data for a particular FASTA file. Majority of these functions can be run in a batch mode, which is very useful for analyzing large data sets. This package can be used by a broad audience, and is designed for researchers that do not have programming experience in sequence analyses. The GUI version of FasParser can be downloaded from https://github.com/Sun-Yanbo/FasParser, free of charge.
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Cited: Baidu(1)
A new species of genus Fejervarya (Anura: Dicroglossidae) from northern Thailand
Chatmongkon SUWANNAPOOM, Zhi-Yong YUAN, Nikolay A. POYARKOV Jr., Fang YAN, Somboon KAMTAEJA, Robert W. MURPHY, Jing CHE
Zoological Research    2016, 37 (6): 327-337.   DOI: 10.13918/j.issn.2095-8137.2016.6.327
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We describe a new species of frog in the dicroglossid genus Fejervarya from Ban Monjong, Omkoi District, Chiang Mai Province, northern Thailand. Analysis of DNA sequence data from the mitochondrial gene 16S, advertisement calls, and morphological distinctiveness support recognition of the new species. Matrilineal genealogy suggests that the new population from Chiang Mai is a sister taxon to the South Asian clade that includes F. syhadrensis, F. granosa, and F. pierrei. The new species, Fejervarya chiangmaiensis sp. nov., differs morphologically from its congeners by its relatively small body size and proportions and the presence of dorsal warts and dermal ridges. Discovery of this new species indicates that the biodiversity of amphibians in this region remains underestimated.
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Cited: Baidu(1)
In Memory of Academician Er-Mi Zhao(1930-2016)
Zoological Research    2017, 38 (1): 2-4.   DOI: 10.13918/j.issn.2095-8137.2017.006
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Comparative study of the transfection efficiency of commonly used viral vectors in rhesus monkey (Macaca mulatta) brains
Shi-Hao Wu, Zhi-Xing Liao, Joshua D. Rizak, Na Zheng, Lin-Heng Zhang, Hen Tang, Xiao-Bin He, Yang Wu, Xia-Ping He, Mei-Feng Yang, Zheng-Hui Li, Dong-Dong Qin, Xin-Tian Hu
Zoological Research    2017, 38 (2): 88-95.   DOI: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2017.015
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Viral vector transfection systems are among the simplest of biological agents with the ability to transfer genes into the central nervous system. In brain research, a series of powerful and novel gene editing technologies are based on these systems. Although many viral vectors are used in rodents, their full application has been limited in non-human primates. To identify viral vectors that can stably and effectively express exogenous genes within non-human primates, eleven commonly used recombinant adeno-associated viral and lentiviral vectors, each carrying a gene to express green or red fluorescence, were injected into the parietal cortex of four rhesus monkeys. The expression of fluorescent cells was used to quantify transfection efficiency. Histological results revealed that recombinant adeno-associated viral vectors, especially the serotype 2/9 coupled with the cytomegalovirus, human synapsin I, or Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II promoters, and lentiviral vector coupled with the human ubiquitin C promoter, induced higher expression of fluorescent cells, representing high transfection efficiency. This is the first comparison of transfection efficiencies of different viral vectors carrying different promoters and serotypes in non-human primates (NHPs). These results can be used as an aid to select optimal vectors to transfer exogenous genes into the central nervous system of non-human primates.
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Consequences of early adverse rearing experience(EARE) on development: insights from non-human primate studies
Bo Zhang
Zoological Research    2017, 38 (1): 7-35.   DOI: 10.13918/j.issn.2095-8137.2017.002
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Early rearing experiences are important in one's whole life, whereas early adverse rearing experience(EARE) is usually related to various physical and mental disorders in later life. Although there were many studies on human and animals, regarding the effect of EARE on brain development, neuroendocrine systems, as well as the consequential mental disorders and behavioral abnormalities, the underlying mechanisms remain unclear. Due to the close genetic relationship and similarity in social organizations with humans, non-human primate(NHP) studies were performed for over 60 years. Various EARE models were developed to disrupt the early normal interactions between infants and mothers or peers. Those studies provided important insights of EARE induced effects on the physiological and behavioral systems of NHPs across life span, such as social behaviors(including disturbance behavior, social deficiency, sexual behavior, etc), learning and memory ability, brain structural and functional developments(including influences on neurons and glia cells, neuroendocrine systems, e.g., hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal(HPA) axis, etc). In this review, the effects of EARE and the underlying epigenetic mechanisms were comprehensively summarized and the possibility of rehabilitation was discussed.
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Cited: Baidu(1)
A new species of the genus Amolops (Anura: Ranidae) from high-altitude Sichuan, southwestern China, with a discussion on the taxonomic status of Amolops kangtingensis
Liang Fei, Chang-Yuan Ye, Yu-Fan Wang, Ke Jiang
Zoological Research    DOI: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2017.022
Patterns of change in the population and spatial distribution of oriental white storks wintering in Poyang Lake
Zhen-Hua WEI, Yan-Kuo LI, Peng XU, Fa-Wen QIAN, Ji-Hong SHAN, Xiao-Bin TU
Zoological Research    2016, 37 (6): 338-346.   DOI: 10.13918/j.issn.2095-8137.2016.6.338
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Using total counts in simultaneous annual surveys, we monitored the population size and spatial distribution of oriental white storks (Ciconia boyciana) wintering in Poyang Lake between 1998 and 2011. Results showed that Poyang Lake wetland is an important wintering ground for oriental white storks, with an annual average population number of 2 305±326. The population sizes in 2004, 2005, 2010, and 2011 were higher than the highest-ever estimate of its global population. In 2005, we recorded 3 789 individuals, which was the maximum population number within the period of 1998-2011. The storks inhabited 52 lakes, with the greatest distance between these lakes being 180.3 km. The storks presented a clustered distribution pattern in the Poyang Lake wetland, irrespective of the number of individuals or occurrence frequencies. Shahu, Dahuchi, Banghu, and Hanchihu were most frequently used lakes and had the largest annual average numbers of storks. There was a significant positive correlation between occurrence frequency and annual average number of storks in the lakes. Most of the lakes important for storks were covered by existing nature reserves, though some lakes outside the reserves were also frequently used. About 64.9%±5.5% of the storks were found in nature reserves. In addition, the storks more frequently used and clumped in significantly larger flocks in lakes within nature reserves than lakes outside.
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Engrafted newborn neurons could functionally integrate into the host neuronal network
Zheng-Bo Wang, Dong-Dong Qin, Xin-Tian Hu
Zoological Research    2017, 38 (1): 5-6.   DOI: 10.13918/j.issn.2095-8137.2017.005
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Does mRNA structure contain genetic information for regulating co-translational protein folding?
Jian-Rong Yang
Zoological Research    2017, 38 (1): 36-43.   DOI: 10.13918/j.issn.2095-8137.2017.004
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Currently many facets of genetic information are ill-defined. In particular, how protein folding is genetically regulated has been a long-standing issue for genetics and protein biology. And a generic mechanistic model with supports of genomic data is still lacking. Recent technological advances have enabled much needed genome-wide experiments. While putting the effect of codon optimality on debate, these studies have supplied mounting evidence suggesting a role of mRNA structure in the regulation of protein folding by modulating translational elongation rate. In conjunctions with previous theories, this mechanistic model of protein folding guided by mRNA structure shall expand our understandings of genetic information and offer new insights into various biomedical puzzles.
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A new species of the genus Triplophysa (Cypriniformes: Nemacheilidae), Triplophysa daochengensis, from Sichuan Province, China
Yu-Yi WU, Zhi-Yu SUN, Yan-Shu GUO
Zoological Research    2016, 37 (5): 290-296.   DOI: 10.13918/j.issn.2095-8137.2016.5.290
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Triplophysa daochengensis sp. nov. is described from the Daocheng River, a northern tributary of the Jinsha River in Sichuan Province, China. The new species can be distinguished from its congeners by the following characters: body smooth and scales absent; lateral line complete; caudal peduncle compressed, depth unchanging; head length equal to caudal-peduncle length; lower jaw shovel-shaped; dorsal-fin origin anterior to pelvic-fin origin and closer to the tip of the snout than to the caudal-fin base, last unbranched ray hard; pelvic-fin tip not reaching anus; posterior chamber of gas bladder absent; intestine of spiral type with three winding coils.
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Tree shrew (Tupaia belangeri) as a novel laboratory disease animal model
Ji Xiao, Rong Liu, Ce-Shi Chen
Zoological Research    2017, 38 (3): 127-137.   DOI: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2017.033
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The tree shrew (Tupaia belangeri) is a promising laboratory animal that possesses a closer genetic relationship to primates than to rodents. In addition, advantages such as small size, easy breeding, and rapid reproduction make the tree shrew an ideal subject for the study of human disease. Numerous tree shrew disease models have been generated in biological and medical studies in recent years. Here we summarize current tree shrew disease models, including models of infectious diseases, cancers, depressive disorders, drug addiction, myopia, metabolic diseases, and immune-related diseases. With the success of tree shrew transgenic technology, this species will be increasingly used in biological and medical studies in the future.
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Cited: Baidu(3)
Creating animal models, why not use the Chinese tree shrew (Tupaia belangeri chinensis)?
Yong-Gang Yao
Zoological Research    2017, 38 (3): 118-126.   DOI: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2017.032
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The Chinese tree shrew (Tupaia belangeri chinensis), a squirrel-like and rat-sized mammal, has a wide distribution in Southeast Asia, South and Southwest China and has many unique characteristics that make it suitable for use as an experimental animal. There have been many studies using the tree shrew (Tupaia belangeri) aimed at increasing our understanding of fundamental biological mechanisms and for the modeling of human diseases and therapeutic responses. The recent release of a publicly available annotated genome sequence of the Chinese tree shrew and its genome database (www.treeshrewdb.org) has offered a solid base from which it is possible to elucidate the basic biological properties and create animal models using this species. The extensive characterization of key factors and signaling pathways in the immune and nervous systems has shown that tree shrews possess both conserved and unique features relative to primates. Hitherto, the tree shrew has been successfully used to create animal models for myopia, depression, breast cancer, alcohol-induced or non-alcoholic fatty liver diseases, herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) and hepatitis C virus (HCV) infections, to name a few. The recent successful genetic manipulation of the tree shrew has opened a new avenue for the wider usage of this animal in biomedical research. In this opinion paper, I attempt to summarize the recent research advances that have used the Chinese tree shrew, with a focus on the new knowledge obtained by using the biological properties identified using the tree shrew genome, a proposal for the genome-based approach for creating animal models, and the genetic manipulation of the tree shrew. With more studies using this species and the application of cutting-edge gene editing techniques, the tree shrew will continue to be under the spot light as a viable animal model for investigating the basis of many different human diseases.
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Cited: Baidu(5)
What is the destiny of a threatened fish, Ptychobarbus chungtienensis, now that non-native weatherfishes have been introduced into Bita Lake, Shangri-La?
Wan-Sheng JIANG, Tao QIN, Wei-Ying WANG, Ya-Peng ZHAO, Shu-Sen SHU, Wei-Hong SONG, Xiao-Yong CHEN, Jun-Xing YANG
Zoological Research    2016, 37 (5): 275-280.   DOI: 10.13918/j.issn.2095-8137.2016.5.275
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Biological invasion is a pervasive negative force of global change, especially in its effects on sensitive freshwater ecosystems. Even protected areas are usually not immune. Ptychobarbus chungtienensis is a threatened freshwater fish now almost confined to Bita Lake, in the Shangri-La region of Yunnan province, China. Its existence is threatened by the introduction of non-native weatherfishes (Misgurnus anguillicaudatus and Paramisgurnus dabryanus) by an unusual method known as ‘prayer animal release’. Periodic surveys revealed the ratio of invasive weatherfishes to P. chungtienensis has been increasing since the former species was first recorded from the lake in August, 2009. Ptychobarbus chungtienensis shows low genetic diversity in the relict Lake Bita population. Weatherfishes, however, have highly successful survival strategies. The degree of dietary overlap between the species is alarming and perhaps critical if food is found to be a limiting factor.
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Lamprey: a model for vertebrate evolutionary research
Yang XU, Si-Wei ZHU, Qing-Wei LI
Zoological Research    2016, 37 (5): 263-269.   DOI: 10.13918/j.issn.2095-8137.2016.5.263
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Lampreys belong to the superclass Cyclostomata and represent the most ancient group of vertebrates. Existing for over 360 million years, they are known as living fossils due to their many evolutionally conserved features. They are not only a keystone species for studying the origin and evolution of vertebrates, but also one of the best models for researching vertebrate embryonic development and organ differentiation. From the perspective of genetic information, the lamprey genome remains primitive compared with that of other higher vertebrates, and possesses abundant functional genes. Through scientific and technological progress, scientists have conducted in-depth studies on the nervous, endocrine, and immune systems of lampreys. Such research has significance for understanding and revealing the origin and evolution of vertebrates, and could contribute to a greater understanding of human diseases and treatments. This review presents the current progress and significance of lamprey research.
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Re-evaluating data quality of dog mitochondrial, Y chromosomal, and autosomal SNPs genotyped by SNP array
Newton O. OTECKO, Min-Sheng PENG, He-Chuan YANG, Ya-Ping ZHANG, Guo-Dong WANG
Zoological Research    2016, 37 (6): 356-360.   DOI: 10.13918/j.issn.2095-8137.2016.6.356
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Quality deficiencies in single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) analyses have important implications. We used missingness rates to investigate the quality of a recently published dataset containing 424 mitochondrial, 211 Y chromosomal, and 160 432 autosomal SNPs generated by a semicustom Illumina SNP array from 5 392 dogs and 14 grey wolves. Overall, the individual missingness rate for mitochondrial SNPs was ~43.8%, with 980 (18.1%) individuals completely missing mitochondrial SNP genotyping (missingness rate=1). In males, the genotype missingness rate was ~28.8% for Y chromosomal SNPs, with 374 males recording rates above 0.96. These 374 males also exhibited completely failed mitochondrial SNPs genotyping, indicative of a batch effect. Individual missingness rates for autosomal markers were greater than zero, but less than 0.5. Neither mitochondrial nor Y chromosomal SNPs achieved complete genotyping (locus missingness rate=0), whereas 5.9% of autosomal SNPs had a locus missingness rate=1. The high missingness rates and possible batch effect show that caution and rigorous measures are vital when genotyping and analyzing SNP array data for domestic animals. Further improvements of these arrays will be helpful to future studies.
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Meeting report: the 4th symposium on animal models of non-human primates in Kunming, Yunnan, China
Jia-Li LI, Yong-Tang ZHENG, Xu-Dong ZHAO, Xin-Tian HU
Zoological Research    2016, 37 (6): 361-365.   DOI: 10.13918/j.issn.2095-8137.2016.6.361
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A new genus and three new species of miniaturized microhylid frogs from Indochina (Amphibia: Anura: Microhylidae: Asterophryinae)
Nikolay A. Poyarkov, Jr., Chatmongkon Suwannapoom, Parinya Pawangkhanant, Akrachai Aksornneam, Tang Van Duong, Dmitriy V. Korost, Jing Che
Zoological Research    2018, 39 (3): 130-157.   DOI: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2018.019
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We report on the discovery of a new genus of microhylid subfamily Asterophryinae from northern and eastern Indochina, containing three new species. Vietnamophryne Gen. nov. are secretive miniaturized frogs (SVL<21 mm) with a mostly semi-fossorial lifestyle. To assess phylogenetic relationships, we studied 12S rRNA-16S rRNA mtDNA fragments with a final alignment of 2 591 bp for 53 microhylid species. External morphology characters and osteological characteristics analyzed using micro-CT scanning were used for describing the new genus. Results of phylogenetic analyses assigned the new genus into the mainly Australasian subfamily Asterophryinae as a sister taxon to the genus Siamophryne from southern Indochina. The three specimens collected from Gia Lai Province in central Vietnam, Cao Bang Province in northern Vietnam, and Chiang Rai Province in northern Thailand proved to be separate species, different both in morphology and genetics (genetic divergence 3.1%≤P≤5.1%). Our work provides further evidence for the “out of Indo-Eurasia” scenario for Asterophryinae, indicating that the initial cladogenesis and differentiation of this group of frogs occurred in the Indochina Peninsula. To date, each of the three new species of Vietnamophryne Gen. nov. is known only from a single specimen; thus, their distribution, life history, and conservation status require further study.
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Identification of candidate piRNAs in the gonads of Paralichthys olivaceus (Japanese flounder)
Chun-Lei WANG, Zhi-Peng WANG, Jia-Qi WANG, Ming-You Li, Xiao-Wu CHEN
Zoological Research    2016, 37 (5): 301-306.   DOI: 10.13918/j.issn.2095-8137.2016.5.301
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Piwi-interacting RNA (piRNA) plays an important role in the gonadal development and maintenance of Teleostei. In this study, piRNA libraries derived from the adult gonads of Japanese flounder (Paralichthys olivaceus) were generated using next-generation sequencing technology. Using zebrafish piRNAs as a reference, 5 865 unique candidate piRNAs were identified; 289 candidate piRNA clusters (PRCs) were generated from the above piRNAs. Among the isolated candidate PRCs, a total of 38 ovary-specific, 45 ovary-bias, 24 testis-specific, and 131 testis-bias PRCs were found. The relative expression levels of seven PRCs were validated through quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction. The results of this study will help facilitate exploration of the development and maintenance of the phenotypic sex mechanism in P. olivaceus.
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Characterization of cyclophilin D in freshwater pearl mussel (Hyriopsis schlegelii)
Xiu-Xiu Liu, Cheng-Yuan Wang, Chun Luo, Jun-Qing Sheng, Di Wu, Bei-Juan Hu, Jun-Hua Wang, Yi-Jiang Hong
Zoological Research    2017, 38 (2): 103-109.   DOI: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2017.018
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Cyclophilin D (referred to as HsCypD) was obtained from the freshwater pearl mussel (Hyriopsis schlegelii). The full-length cDNA was 2 671 bp, encoding a protein consisting of 367 amino acids. HsCypD was determined to be a hydrophilic intracellular protein with 10 phosphorylation sites and four tetratricopeptide repeat (TPR) domains, but no signal peptide. The core sequence region YKGCIFHRIIKDFMVQGG is highly conserved in vertebrates and invertebrates. Phylogenetic tree analysis indicated that CypD from all species had a common origin, and HsCypD had the closest phylogenetic relationship with CypD from Lottia gigantea. The constitutive mRNA expression levels of HsCypD exhibited tissue-specific patterns, with the highest level detected in the intestines, followed by the gonads, and the lowest expression found in the hemocytes.
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Zoological Research    2017, 38 (3): 115-170.  
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Kidney disease models: tools to identify mechanisms and potential therapeutic targets
Yin-Wu Bao, Yuan Yuan, Jiang-Hua Chen, Wei-Qiang Lin
Zoological Research    2018, 39 (2): 72-86.   DOI: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2017.055
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Acute kidney injury (AKI) and chronic kidney disease (CKD) are worldwide public health problems affecting millions of people and have rapidly increased in prevalence in recent years. Due to the multiple causes of renal failure, many animal models have been developed to advance our understanding of human nephropathy. Among these experimental models, rodents have been extensively used to enable mechanistic understanding of kidney disease induction and progression, as well as to identify potential targets for therapy. In this review, we discuss AKI models induced by surgical operation and drugs or toxins, as well as a variety of CKD models (mainly genetically modified mouse models). Results from recent and ongoing clinical trials and conceptual advances derived from animal models are also explored.
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In vivo genome editing thrives with diversified CRISPR technologies
Xun Ma, Avery Sum-Yu Wong, Hei-Yin Tam, Samuel Yung-Kin Tsui, Dittman Lai-Shun Chung, Bo Feng
Zoological Research    2018, 39 (2): 58-71.   DOI: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2017.012
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Prokaryotic type II adaptive immune systems have been developed into the versatile CRISPR technology, which has been widely applied in site-specific genome editing and has revolutionized biomedical research due to its superior efficiency and flexibility. Recent studies have greatly diversified CRISPR technologies by coupling it with various DNA repair mechanisms and targeting strategies. These new advances have significantly expanded the generation of genetically modified animal models, either by including species in which targeted genetic modification could not be achieved previously, or through introducing complex genetic modifications that take multiple steps and cost years to achieve using traditional methods. Herein, we review the recent developments and applications of CRISPR-based technology in generating various animal models, and discuss the everlasting impact of this new progress on biomedical research.
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Contents
Zoological Research    2016, 37 (5): 261-314.  
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Development and characterization of a guinea pig model for Marburg virus
Gary Wong, Wen-Guang Cao, Shi-Hua He, Zi-Rui Zhang, Wen-Jun Zhu, Estella Moffat, Hideki Ebihara, Carissa Embury-Hyatt, Xiang-Guo Qiu
Zoological Research    2018, 39 (1): 32-41.   DOI: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2017.054
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The Angolan strain of Marburg virus (MARV/Ang) can cause lethal disease in humans with a case fatality rate of up to 90%, but infection of immunocompetent rodents do not result in any observable symptoms. Our previous work includes the development and characterization of a MARV/Ang variant that can cause lethal disease in mice (MARV/Ang-MA), with the aim of using this tool to screen for promising prophylactic and therapeutic candidates. An intermediate animal model is needed to confirm any findings from mice studies before testing in the gold-standard non-human primate (NHP) model. In this study, we serially passaged the clinical isolate of MARV/Ang in the livers and spleens of guinea pigs until a variant emerged that causes 100% lethality in guinea pigs (MARV/Ang-GA). Animals infected with MARV/Ang-GA showed signs of filovirus infection including lymphocytopenia, thrombocytopenia, and high viremia leading to spread to major organs, including the liver, spleen, lungs, and kidneys. The MARV/Ang-GA guinea pigs died between 7–9 days after infection, and the LD50 was calculated to be 1.1×10–1 TCID50 (median tissue culture infective dose). Mutations in MARV/Ang-GA were identified and compared to sequences of known rodent-adapted MARV/Ang variants, which may benefit future studies characterizing important host adaptation sites in the MARV/Ang viral genome.
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An annotated checklist of mammals of Kenya
Simon Musila, Ara Monadjem, Paul W. Webala, Bruce D. Patterson, Rainer Hutterer, Yvonne A. De Jong, Thomas M. Butynski, Geoffrey Mwangi, Zhong-Zheng Chen, Xue-Long Jiang
Zoological Research    2019, 40 (1): 3-52.   DOI: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2018.059
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Kenya has a rich mammalian fauna. We reviewed recently published books and papers including the six volumes of Mammals of Africa to develop an up-to-date annotated checklist of all mammals recorded from Kenya. A total of 390 species have been identified in the country, including 106 species of rodents, 104 species of bats, 63 species of even-toed ungulates (including whales and dolphins), 36 species of insectivores and carnivores, 19 species of primates, five species of elephant shrews, four species of hyraxes and odd-toed ungulates, three species of afrosoricids, pangolins, and hares, and one species of aardvark, elephant, sirenian and hedgehog. The number of species in this checklist is expected to increase with additional surveys and as the taxonomic status of small mammals (e.g., bats, shrews and rodents) becomes better understood.
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GCH1 plays a role in the high-altitude adaptation of Tibetans
Yong-Bo Guo, Yao-Xi He, Chao-Ying Cui, Ouzhuluobu, Baimakangzhuo, Duojizhuoma, Dejiquzong, Bianba, Yi Peng, Cai-juan Bai, Gonggalanzi, Yong-Yue Pan, Qula, Kangmin, Cirenyangji, Baimayangji, Wei Guo, Yangla, Hui Zhang, Xiao-Ming Zhang, Wang-Shan Zheng, Shu-Hua Xu, Hua Chen, Sheng-Guo Zhao, Yuan Cai, Shi-Ming Liu, Tian-Yi Wu, Xue-Bin Qi, Bing Su
Zoological Research    2017, 38 (3): 155-162.   DOI: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2017.037
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Tibetans are well adapted to high-altitude hypoxia. Previous genome-wide scans have reported many candidate genes for this adaptation, but only a few have been studied. Here we report on a hypoxia gene (GCH1, GTP-cyclohydrolase I), involved in maintaining nitric oxide synthetase (NOS) function and normal blood pressure, that harbors many potentially adaptive variants in Tibetans. We resequenced an 80.8 kb fragment covering the entire gene region of GCH1 in 50 unrelated Tibetans. Combined with previously published data, we demonstrated many GCH1 variants showing deep divergence between highlander Tibetans and lowlander Han Chinese. Neutrality tests confirmed a signal of positive Darwinian selection on GCH1 in Tibetans. Moreover, association analysis indicated that the Tibetan version of GCH1 was significantly associated with multiple physiological traits in Tibetans, including blood nitric oxide concentration, blood oxygen saturation, and hemoglobin concentration. Taken together, we propose that GCH1 plays a role in the genetic adaptation of Tibetans to high altitude hypoxia.
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Cited: Baidu(1)
Dynamic changes in DNA demethylation in the tree shrew (Tupaia belangeri chinensis) brain during postnatal development and aging
Shu Wei, Hai-Rong Hua, Qian-Quan Chen, Ying Zhang, Fei Chen, Shu-Qing Li, Fan Li, Jia-Li Li
Zoological Research    2017, 38 (2): 96-102.   DOI: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2017.013
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Brain development and aging are associated with alterations in multiple epigenetic systems, including DNA methylation and demethylation patterns. Here, we observed that the levels of the 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5hmC) ten-eleven translocation (TET) enzyme-mediated active DNA demethylation products were dynamically changed and involved in postnatal brain development and aging in tree shrews (Tupaia belangeri chinensis). The levels of 5hmC in multiple anatomic structures showed a gradual increase throughout postnatal development, whereas a significant decrease in 5hmC was found in several brain regions in aged tree shrews, including in the prefrontal cortex and hippocampus, but not the cerebellum. Active changes in Tet mRNA levels indicated that TET2 and TET3 predominantly contributed to the changes in 5hmC levels. Our findings provide new insight into the dynamic changes in 5hmC levels in tree shrew brains during postnatal development and aging processes.
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Cited: Baidu(2)
Evolution and phylogenetic application of the MC1R gene in the Cobitoidea (Teleostei: Cypriniformes)
Qiong-Ying TANG, Li-Xia SHI, Fei LIU, Dan YU, Huan-Zhang LIU
Zoological Research    2016, 37 (5): 281-289.   DOI: 10.13918/j.issn.2095-8137.2016.5.281
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Fish of the superfamily Cobitoidea sensu stricto (namely loaches) exhibit extremely high diversity of color patterns, but so far little is known about their evolutionary mechanism. Melanocortin 1 receptor gene (MC1R) plays an important role during the synthesis of melanin and formation of animal body color patterns. In this study, we amplified and sequenced the partial MC1R gene for 44 loach individuals representing 31 species of four families. Phylogenetic analyses yielded a topology congruent with previous studies using multiple nuclear loci, showing that each of the four families was monophyletic with sister relationships of Botiidae+ (Cobitidae+(Balitoridae+Nemacheilidae)). Gene evolutionary analyses indicated that MC1R in loaches was under purifying selection pressure, with various sites having different dN/dS values. Both Botiidae and Cobitidae had lower dN/dS values than those of background lineages, suggesting their evolution might be strongly affected by purifying selection pressure. For Balitoridae and Nemacheilidae, both had larger dN/dS values than those of background lineages, suggesting they had a faster evolutionary rate under more relaxed selection pressure. Consequently, we inferred that the relatively stable color patterns in Botiidae and Cobitidae might result from the strong purifying selection pressure on the MC1R gene, whereas the complicated and diverse color patterns in Balitoridae and Nemacheilidae might be associated with the relaxed selection pressure. Given the easy experimental procedure for the partial MC1R gene and its excellent performance in reconstructing phylogeny, we suggest this gene could be used as a good molecular marker for the phylogenetic study of fish species.
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Reconsidering the distribution of gray wolves
Greger Larson
Zoological Research    2017, 38 (3): 115-116.   DOI: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2017.021
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Taxonomic revision of the genus Mesechinus (Mammalia: Erinaceidae) with description of a new species
Huai-Sen Ai, Kai He, Zhong-Zheng Chen, Jia-Qi Li, Tao Wan, Quan Li, Wen-Hui Nie, Jin-Huan Wang, Wei-Ting Su, Xue-Long Jiang
Zoological Research    2018, 39 (5): 335-347.   DOI: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2018.034
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Hedgehogs in the genus Mesechinus (Family Erinaceidae), which include two currently recognized species (M. dauuricus and M. hughi), are distributed from northeast Mongolia to the upper Amur Basin in Russia and adjacent areas in northeast and northern China. In recent years, a population of Mesechinus hedgehogs was discovered from Mt. Gaoligong, southwestern Yunnan, China, far from the known distribution range of the genus. Furthermore, these hedgehogs are the only known population to be distributed at elevations higher than 2 100 m and in sympatry with gymnures. To evaluate the taxonomic status of these hedgehogs, we examined specimens representing Mesechinus taxa in China and further conducted morphometric and karyotypic analyses. Our results supported the existence of four species in China. Specifically, we identified the hedgehogs from Mt. Gaoligong as a new species, Mesechinus wangi sp. nov., and recognized M. miodon, previously considered as a synonym of either M. dauuricus or M. hughi, as a distinct species. Interestingly, we observed a supernumerary M4 on all specimens of Mesechinus wangi sp. nov., which is an extremely rare event in the evolution of mammalian dentition.
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