33 research outputs found

    Hearts, and the Heartless, in the Animal Kingdom

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    We all take our hearts for granted: the fascinating organ inside everyone that beats continuously to keep blood pumping through our bodies. Blood flow ensures that oxygen, nutrients from food, hormones, and waste products get to the correct cells. The heart is essential for keeping humans and most animals alive. Hearts are even more interesting when we examine what they do, how they look, how they work, and the similarities and differences in the hearts of species across the planet. Is a giraffe heart similar to a human heart? Which animal survives despite having no heart? Can a heart really beat over 1,500 times a minute? From dinosaurs to insects, humans to dogs, this paper looks at what is really happening on the inside, exploring the world of heart anatomy

    Can Toothache Cause Heartbreak?

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    Poor mouth care and heart disease are two major health concerns worldwide. Both conditions occur in humans and in many mammals, including our pets. “Periodontal” is the word used to refer to structures surrounding the teeth, including the gums and bone. Scientists have seen a connection between poor periodontal health and the increased risk of developing heart disease. It is thought that the bacteria found in dental plaque enters the bloodstream once the gums become inflamed. These bacteria travel through blood vessels, helping blockages called atherosclerotic lesions to form, which narrow the passageways of blood to the heart. In severe cases, lesions can dislodge from the arteries and completely block blood flow to the heart, leading to heart disease and heart failure. Scientific studies have shown that poor periodontal health significantly increases the risk of developing heart disease. Interestingly, it seems our canine companions are suffering the same effects. Brushing teeth could save lives

    Reptilian Skin and Its Special Histological Structures

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    Reptilian skin is covered with scales forming armor that makes it watertight and enables reptiles to live on land in contrast to amphibians. An important part of the skin is the horny epidermis, with thick stratum corneum in which waxes are arranged in membrane-like layers. In lizards and snakes, the whole skin is covered in overlapping epidermal scales and in turtles and crocodiles in dermal scutes. The cornified part of the epidermis is strengthened by β-keratin and sometimes α-keratin. In crocodiles and many turtles, the outer scale surface consists of β-keratin and the hinge region containing α-keratin. In lizards and snakes, both keratins form continuous layers with the α-keratin below the β-keratin. Some reptiles have developed a sensitive mechanosensory system in the skin. The colors of reptile skin are produced by melanocytes and three types of chromatophores: melanophores, xanthophores, and iridophores. The color patterns may be fixed or the chromatophores may provide rapid color change. Skin from different species of reptiles, turtles (red-eared slider (Trachemys scripta elegans)), snakes (Emerald tree boa (Corallus caninus) and Burmese python (Python bivittatus)), Cuvier’s dwarf caiman (Paleosuchus palpebrosus), lizards (Leopard Gecko (Eublepharis macularius)), and Green iguana (Iguana iguana), were examined with histology techniques and compared

    The importance of anatomy

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    Anatomy is the knowledge about the structure of the bodies of animals and people. This includes information about blood vessels, organs, the skeleton, and nerves. But have you ever wondered where the anatomical information in science books and websites comes from? When did our fascination with the body begin and why do people still study it now? Who teaches doctors, nurses, veterinary surgeons, and other health professionals about the body? How has anatomy inspired art, and vice versa? This paper looks at the amazing world of anatomy: what anatomy is; why it is needed; why it is important; who studies, teaches, and researches anatomy; and what the future holds for this fascinating science

    Critical Impact of Different Conserved Endoplasmic Retention Motifs and Dopamine Receptor Interacting Proteins (DRIPs) on Intracellular Localization and Trafficking of the D2 Dopamine Receptor (D2-R) Isoforms

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    The type 2 dopamine receptor D2 (D2-R), member of the G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) superfamily, exists in two isoforms, short (D2S-R) and long (D2L-R). They differ by an additional 29 amino acids (AA) in the third cytoplasmic loop (ICL3) of the D2L-R. These isoforms differ in their intracellular localization and trafficking functionality, as D2L-R possesses a larger intracellular pool, mostly in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). This review focuses on the evolutionarily conserved motifs in the ICL3 of the D2-R and proteins interacting with the ICL3 of both isoforms, specifically with the 29 AA insert. These motifs might be involved in D2-R exit from the ER and have an impact on cell-surface and intracellular localization and, therefore, also play a role in the function of dopamine receptor signaling, ligand binding and possible homo/heterodimerization. Our recent bioinformatic data on potential new interaction partners for the ICL3 of D2-Rs are also presented. Both are highly relevant, and have clinical impacts on the pathophysiology of several diseases such as Parkinson’s disease, schizophrenia, Tourette’s syndrome, Huntington’s disease, manic depression, and others, as they are connected to a variety of essential motifs and differences in communication with interaction partners

    Skeleton Growth in Guinea Pigs and Humans

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    Every animal has a skeleton made up of many different bones. Bones are vital. Without bones we would not be able to move, protect our internal organs, store important minerals, or even make some cell types! When we are young, in addition to growing, our bones must develop into specific shapes. This article describes how and why bones grow and heal in humans and guinea pigs. Using a special imaging technique called micro-computed tomography, we will show you the unique structure of some guinea pig bones and how animals of different ages have important bone variations. We will also discuss how the fascinating discovery of a hole in a bone, called a supratrochlear foramen, was described for the first time in a species. We will also answer questions, such as “how can you keep your bones healthy” and “what happens to astronauts’ skeletons in space?

    Morphological and Structural Investigations of Egyptian Water Buffalo (Bubalus Bubalis) Sertoli Cells

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    Buffaloes are essential part of the economy in many countries and provide sustainable food in addition to being working animals. Inefficiency in reproduction has become problematic in recent years due to a number of factors and although much research concentrates on the female, very little is known about the male buffalo reproductive system. To address this deficiency in the literature, testes were obtained from 20 clinically healthy water buffalo (Bubalus Bubalis) bulls aged 3 years old. Scanning electron microscopy showed that the Sertoli cells were columnar to triangle shaped with many processes. In the middle portion of the seminiferous tubules, the Sertoli cell had two types of processes with sheet like and slender cord like appearances. The sheet like processes had simple smooth margins originating from Sertoli cells, surrounding the surfaces of spermatogonia and spermatocytes. The slender cord like processes formed networks around other spermatogenic cells. Transmission electron microscopy showed that the Sertoli cells contained a large irregular shaped nucleus with deep nuclear membrane indentations, few mitochondria, aggregates of ribosomes and few rough endoplasmic reticulum which were observed within the indentations. Each nucleus contained a multivesicular nuclear body, containing vesicles, tubules and ribosome like dense structures. The work herein describes the structure and location of key reproductive cells within the water buffalo. Understanding the features of the male reproductive system is essential in order to advance studies into the reproductive decline of this species and the Bovidae family

    Investigation into Whether Proximal Suspensory Desmitis of the Hindlimb Could Predispose Horses to Sacroiliac Disease

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    Proximal suspensory desmopathy/desmitis (PSD) of the hindlimb is a well understood condition with widely accepted treatment protocols; however, there is little research demonstrating understanding or potential correlation between hindlimb PSD and sacroiliac disease (SID). Several studies have examined the co-existence of hindlimb PSD and SID each investigating unique predisposing factors. This has led to little direct correlation of cause and effect with no definitive conclusions drawn. The need to be objective is highlighted by the limited number of studies and that two studies used anecdotal evidence to support their hypothesis and thus creating the question does hindlimb proximal suspensory desmopathy predispose horses to sacroiliac disease? This review looks at the two conditions and compares the literature for each, including the incidence, biomechanics, anatomy, and treatment. The review further discusses whether one disorder predisposes horses/equids to the other

    Avian Cardiovascular Disease Characteristics, Causes and Genomics

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    Cardiovascular disease is common in avian species and increasing commercial economic losses and demand for healthcare in the household/smallholding veterinary sector has resulted in increased research into these disorders. This in turn has highlighted the importance of breeding, genetic testing and possibilities for future prognostic and diagnostic testing. Research into avian cardiovascular genetics has rapidly accelerated. Previously much work was undertaken in mammals with information extrapolated and transferred to birds. Birds have also been used to model cardiovascular disease and therefore knowledge has become enriched due to this endeavour. Increasingly, the avian genome is being analysed in its own right. This work is assisted by the growing number of avian genomes being published. In 2015, Nature published news on the ‘Bird 10K’ project, which aims to sequence 10,500 extant bird species. By 2018, the Avian Genomes Consortium had published the sequences of 45 species/34 orders. This review investigates a range of avian cardiovascular disorders in order to highlight their pathologies, epidemiology and genetics in addition to avian models of heart disease. With the availability of more reference genomes, increases in the number and magnitude of avian studies and more advanced technologies, the genetics behind avian cardiovascular disorders is being unravelled
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