Synesthesia is a phenomenon where a stimulus produces consistent extraordinary subjective experiences. A relatively common type of synesthesia involves perception of color when viewing letters (e.g. the letter ‘a’ always appears as light blue). In this study, we examine whether traits typically regarded as markers of synesthesia can be acquired by simply reading in color.
Quantitative descriptions of animal vocalizations can inform an understanding of their evolutionary functions, the mechanisms for their production and perception, and their potential utility in taxonomy, population monitoring, and conservation. The goal of this study was to provide the first acoustical and statistical analysis of the advertisement calls of Nasikabatrachus sahyadrensis. Commonly known as the Indian purple frog, N. sahyadrensis is an endangered species endemic to the Western Ghats of India. As the only known species in its family (Nasikabatrachidae), it has ancient evolutionary ties to frogs restricted to the Seychelles archipelago (Sooglossidae). The role of vocalizations in the behavior of this unique species poses interesting questions, as the animal is fossorial and potentially earless and it breeds explosively above the soil for only about two weeks a year. In this study, we quantified 19 acoustic properties of 208 calls recorded from 10 males. Vocalizations were organized into distinct call groups typically composed of two to six short (59 ms), pulsatile calls, each consisting of about five to seven pulses produced at a rate of about 106 pulses/s. The frequency content of the call consisted of a single dominant peak between 1200-1300 Hz and there was no frequency modulation. The patterns of variation within and among individuals were typical of those seen in other frogs. Few of the properties we measured were related to temperature, body size, or condition, though there was little variation in temperature. Field observations and recordings of captive individuals indicated that males engaged in both antiphonal calling and call overlap with nearby calling neighbors. We discuss our findings in relation to previous work on vocal behavior in other fossorial frogs and in sooglossid frogs.
Some species of Talaromyces secrete large amounts of red pigments. Literature has linked this character to species such as Talaromyces purpurogenus, T. albobiverticillius, T. marneffei, and T. minioluteus often under earlier Penicillium names. Isolates identified as T. purpurogenus have been reported to be interesting industrially and they can produce extracellular enzymes and red pigments, but they can also produce mycotoxins such as rubratoxin A and B and luteoskyrin. Production of mycotoxins limits the use of isolates of a particular species in biotechnology. Talaromyces atroroseus sp. nov., described in this study, produces the azaphilone biosynthetic families mitorubrins and Monascus pigments without any production of mycotoxins. Within the red pigment producing clade, T. atroroseus resolved in a distinct clade separate from all the other species in multigene phylogenies (ITS, β-tubulin and RPB1), which confirm its unique nature. Talaromyces atroroseus resembles T. purpurogenus and T. albobiverticillius in producing red diffusible pigments, but differs from the latter two species by the production of glauconic acid, purpuride and ZG-1494α and by the dull to dark green, thick walled ellipsoidal conidia produced. The type strain of Talaromyces atroroseus is CBS 133442.
Cronobacter sakazakii (C. sakazakii) is a foodborne pathogen, posing a high risk of disease to infants and immuno-compromised individuals. In order to develop a quick, easy, and sensitive assay for detecting C. sakazakii, a rabbit anti-C. sakazakii IgG was developed using sonicated cell protein from C. sakakzakii. The developed anti-C. sakazakii IgG was of good quality and purity, as well as species-specific. The developed rabbit anti-C. sakazakii IgG was attached to the surface of a sulforhodamine B-encapsulated liposome to form an immunoliposome. A test strip was then prepared by coating goat anti-rabbit IgG onto the control line and rabbit anti-C. sakazakii IgG onto the test line, respectively, of a plastic-backed nitrocellulose membrane. Purple color signal both on the test line and the control line indicated the presence of C. sakazakii in sample, while purple color only on the control line indicated the absence of C. sakazakii in sample. This immunochromatographic strip assay could produce results in 15 min with a limit of detection 10(7) CFU/ml in C. sakazakii culture. The immunochromatographic strip assay also showed a very good specificity without cross-reactivity with other tested Cronobacter species. Based on these results, the developed immunochromatographic strip assay is efficient for the detection of C. sakazakii and has a high potential for on-site detection.
The Indian Purple frog, Nasikabatrachus sahyadrensis, occupies a basal phylogenetic position among neobatrachian anurans and has a very unusual life history. Tadpoles have a large ventral oral sucker, which they use to cling to rocks in torrents, whereas metamorphs possess adaptations for life underground. The developmental changes that underlie these shifts in habits and habitats, and especially the internal remodeling of the cranial and postcranial skeleton, are unknown. Using a nearly complete metamorphic series from free-living larva to metamorph, we describe the postembryonic skeletal ontogeny of this ancient and unique monotypic lineage. The torrent-dwelling larva possesses a dorsoventrally flattened body and a head with tiny dorsal eyes, robust lower and upper jaw cartilages, well-developed trabecular horns, and a definable gap between the trabecular horns and the tip of the snout. Unlike tadpoles of many other frogs, those of Nasikabatrachus retain larval mouthparts into late metamorphic stages. This unusual feature enables the larvae to maintain their clinging habit until near the end of metamorphosis. The subsequent ontogenetic shift from clinging to digging is correlated with rapid morphological changes and behavioral modifications. Metamorphs are equipped with a shortened tibiafibula and ossified prehallical elements, which likely facilitate initial digging using the hind limbs. Subsequently, the frogs may shift to headfirst burrowing by using the wedge-shaped skull, anteriorly positioned pectoral girdle, well-developed humeral crests and spatula-shaped forelimbs. The transition from an aquatic life in torrents to a terrestrial life underground entails dramatic changes in skeletal morphology and function that represent an extreme in metamorphic remodeling. Our analysis enhances the scope for detailed comparative studies across anurans, a group renowned for the diversity of its life history strategies.
Application of pigments in textile coloring has many advantages such as less water and energy consumption, less effluent load and higher efficiency, so the pigments are perfect alternatives to dyes for eco-friendly coloring. In this work, a stable anionic nanoscale pigment suspension was prepared using a polymeric dispersant to color the cationised cotton with the exhaust method. Meanwhile, ultrasound was carried out during the adsorption to evaluate the ultrasonic influences on the uptake of pigment, adsorption efficiency and final product quality. The uptake of pigment is found to be higher with ultrasonic method than that with conventional technique because of the good dispersing capacity of ultrasound to pigment particles. Besides, it is found that nanoscale pigment has higher adsorption rate when using ultrasonic method because the ultrasound promotes the diffusion of pigment through the fiber-liquid boundary layer. Lastly, the color difference (ΔE) reveals the nanoscale pigment can be deposited on cotton surface more uniformly under ultrasonic condition, improving the product quality obviously.
Homogenate extraction technology was developed for extraction of gardenia yellow pigment from Gardenia jasminoides Ellis fruit. The operating parameters affecting the color value of gardenia yellow pigment were studied on the basis of a Box-Behnken design and response surface methodology. Results showed that the optimum extraction conditions were as follows: extraction time 41 s, ethanol concentration 50 %, ratio of liquid to material 15:1 (mL:g) and particle size 1.7 mm. Under the optimum condition, the experimental color value was 52.37 g(-1), which was in keeping with the predicted one. Compared with the heat extraction method, the color value of gardenia yellow pigment of homogenate extraction was higher and the extraction time was shorter. Homogenate extraction method is an ideal means for extraction of gardenia yellow pigment from Gardenia jasminoides Ellis fruit.
Yuzhu (Polygonati Odorati Rhizoma), Kangdingyuzhu (Polygonati Prattii Rhizoma), and zhugenqiyuzhu (Disporopsis Fuscopictae Rhizoma) are of the same family, but of different genera. They have all often used in Chinese Materia Medica (CMM) as Polygonati Odorati Rhizoma in China market. Three species of CMM are confused. For better application, we need to identify these plants accurately. This study use pharmacognosy technique and GC-MS analysis, three species of CMM were authenticated. In macroscopic characteristics, the fruit of Polygonati Odorati Rhizoma is blue-black, while the other two are maroon and dark purple orderly. Nodes of Polygonati Odorati Rhizoma are upward and light uplift, about 1 cm spacing, while the other are not. As for microscopic characteristics, the cortex of Polygonati Odorati Rhizoma only occupies about 1/5 of the radius of the transverse section with inconspicuous endodermis, which is much smaller than others. The type of vascular bundles of Polygonati Odorati Rhizoma is closed collateral, but the other is amphivasal. Raphides of calcium oxalate are scattered, but Raphides of the other two are like brooms and neat rows. GC-MS analysis of essential oil could provide different characteristics to distinguish three species. Twenty-three compounds were identified from essential oil of Polygonati Odorati Rhizoma and the main components were n-hexadecanoic acid (49.45%), while n-hexadecanoic acid of the other two are 23.92% and 9.45%. The content of n-hexadecanoic is strongly different. This research was aimed to establish a method by pharmacognosy and GC-MS analysis to identify three CMM and for providing scientifical data to ensure accuracy of origin of three species. Microsc. Res. Tech., 2014. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
We recently reported that an allowed d-d transition of trigonal bipyramidal (TBP) Mn(3+) is responsible for the bright blue color in the YIn1-xMnxO3 solid solution. The crystal field splitting between a'(dz(2)) and e'(dx(2)-y(2), dxy) energy levels is very sensitive to the apical Mn-O distance. We therefore applied chemical pressure to compress the apical Mn-O distance in YIn1-xMnxO3, move the allowed d-d transition to higher energy, and thereby tune the color from blue to violet/purple. This was accomplished by substituting smaller cations such as Ti(4+)/Zn(2+) and Al(3+) onto the TBP In/Mn site, which yielded novel violet/purple phases. The general formula is YIn1-x-2y-zMnxTiyZnyAlzO3 (x = 0.005-0.2, y = 0.1-0.4, and z ≤ 0.1), where the color darkens with the increasing amount of Mn. Higher y or small additions of Al provide a more reddish hue to the resulting purple colors. Substituting other rare earth cations for Y has little impact on color. Crystal structure analysis by neutron powder diffraction confirms a shorter apical Mn-O distance compared with that in the blue YIn1-xMnxO3. Magnetic susceptibility measurements verify the 3+ oxidation state for Mn. Diffuse reflection spectra were obtained over the wavelength region 200-2500 nm. All samples show excellent near-infrared reflectance comparable to that of commercial TiO2, making them ideal for cool pigment applications such as energy efficient roofs of buildings and cars where reducing solar heat to save energy is desired. In a comparison with commercial purple pigments, such as Co3(PO4)2, our pigments are much more thermally stable and chemically inert, and are neither toxic nor carcinogenic.
Jumping spiders (family Salticidae) are masters of miniature vision, achieving higher spatial resolution in relation to body size than any other animal . While most members of this family do not use color in intraspecific communication, several genera serve as emerging examples of rapid evolutionary radiation in sexual display coloration . These include the Australasian Maratus ‘peacock’ spiders, and the American genus Habronattus. Males of these genera are often brilliantly colored on body surfaces they showcase to females during elaborate courtship dances (Figure 1A). However, molecular and electrophysiological data suggest that color vision in the acute ‘principal’ eyes of most jumping spiders is based on only two types of photosensitive pigment, one sensitive to ultraviolet (UV) light, the other to green light [3-5]. We report here that Habronattus jumping spiders may achieve substantially better color vision via a mechanism previously unknown in spiders: the shifting of sensitivity of a subset of their photoreceptors from green to red via a long-pass filter positioned in their retina. Trichromatic vision resulting from this filter system should markedly enrich these animals' perception of color, including reds, oranges and yellows often found in their courtship displays.