Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New study changes conditions for Spanish brown bears

18.03.2008
Brown bears from the Iberian Peninsula are not as genetically different from other brown bears in Europe as was previously thought.

An international study being published this week in the Net edition of the American journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, PNAS, shows that, on the contrary, the Spanish bear was only recently isolated from other European strains. These findings shed new light on the discussion of how to save the population of Spanish bears.

The researchers extracted DNA and determined the gene sequence of bears from prehistoric material, primarily from the Iberian Peninsula. Some of the material was as much as 80,000 years old. When the data material was analyzed, what emerged was a totally unexpected pattern.

“We expected to be able to follow the Spanish brown bear far back in time, but we found to our amazement that it had genetic material from bears in other parts of Europe. In fact, it seems that the Spanish bear was isolated for the first time in our own time,” says doctoral student Cristina Valdiosera, who performed most of the laboratory and analytical work.

“These bears have possibly been isolated in Spain for a few thousand years, which is a very short period in an evolutionary perspective. In other words, there has been a flow of genes to and from the Iberian Peninsula throughout most of the time brown bears have been there. This is extremely interesting data when we discuss transporting bears from other areas to Spain for the purpose of preservation,” says Anders Götherstam, who directed the study.

The number of bears on the Iberian Peninsula is limited, with the population divided into two small groups in the north. In-breeding and genetic depletion constitutes a serious threat to the bears’ survival in this area. For preservation purposes, the possibility of introducing bears from other areas to the Iberian Peninsula has been discussed, but it has been objected that this would entail the extinction of the genetically unique Iberian bear. It has also been feared that bears from other areas are not as well adapted to the living conditions on the Iberian Peninsula as the Spanish bears are.

“But since there has never been a genetically isolated brown bear on the Iberian Peninsula until very recently, these arguments can be questioned,” says Anders Götherstam.

The study was performed collaboratively by scientists from Spain, France, Germany, the UK, and Sweden.

Anneli Waara | alfa
Further information:
http://www.pnas.org/cgi/reprint/0712223105v1
http://www.uu.se

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht When corals eat plastics
24.05.2018 | Justus-Liebig-Universität Gießen

nachricht Dispersal of Fish Eggs by Water Birds – Just a Myth?
19.02.2018 | Universität Basel

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Molecular switch will facilitate the development of pioneering electro-optical devices

A research team led by physicists at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) has developed molecular nanoswitches that can be toggled between two structurally different states using an applied voltage. They can serve as the basis for a pioneering class of devices that could replace silicon-based components with organic molecules.

The development of new electronic technologies drives the incessant reduction of functional component sizes. In the context of an international collaborative...

Im Focus: LZH showcases laser material processing of tomorrow at the LASYS 2018

At the LASYS 2018, from June 5th to 7th, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) will be showcasing processes for the laser material processing of tomorrow in hall 4 at stand 4E75. With blown bomb shells the LZH will present first results of a research project on civil security.

At this year's LASYS, the LZH will exhibit light-based processes such as cutting, welding, ablation and structuring as well as additive manufacturing for...

Im Focus: Self-illuminating pixels for a new display generation

There are videos on the internet that can make one marvel at technology. For example, a smartphone is casually bent around the arm or a thin-film display is rolled in all directions and with almost every diameter. From the user's point of view, this looks fantastic. From a professional point of view, however, the question arises: Is that already possible?

At Display Week 2018, scientists from the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Polymer Research IAP will be demonstrating today’s technological possibilities and...

Im Focus: Explanation for puzzling quantum oscillations has been found

So-called quantum many-body scars allow quantum systems to stay out of equilibrium much longer, explaining experiment | Study published in Nature Physics

Recently, researchers from Harvard and MIT succeeded in trapping a record 53 atoms and individually controlling their quantum state, realizing what is called a...

Im Focus: Dozens of binaries from Milky Way's globular clusters could be detectable by LISA

Next-generation gravitational wave detector in space will complement LIGO on Earth

The historic first detection of gravitational waves from colliding black holes far outside our galaxy opened a new window to understanding the universe. A...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Save the date: Forum European Neuroscience – 07-11 July 2018 in Berlin, Germany

02.05.2018 | Event News

Invitation to the upcoming "Current Topics in Bioinformatics: Big Data in Genomics and Medicine"

13.04.2018 | Event News

Unique scope of UV LED technologies and applications presented in Berlin: ICULTA-2018

12.04.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

When corals eat plastics

24.05.2018 | Ecology, The Environment and Conservation

Surgery involving ultrasound energy found to treat high blood pressure

24.05.2018 | Medical Engineering

First chip-scale broadband optical system that can sense molecules in the mid-IR

24.05.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>