Convergent changes in muscle metabolism depend on duration of high-altitude ancestry across Andean waterfowl

Dawson, N. J. , Alza, L., Nandal, G., Scott, G. R. and McCracken, K. G. (2020) Convergent changes in muscle metabolism depend on duration of high-altitude ancestry across Andean waterfowl. eLife, 9, e56259. (doi: 10.7554/elife.56259) (PMID:32729830) (PMCID:PMC7494360)

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Abstract

High-altitude environments require that animals meet the metabolic O2 demands for locomotion and thermogenesis in O2-thin air, but the degree to which convergent metabolic changes have arisen across independent high-altitude lineages or the speed at which such changes arise is unclear. We examined seven high-altitude waterfowl that have inhabited the Andes (3812-4806m elevation) over varying evolutionary time scales, to elucidate changes in biochemical pathways of energy metabolism in flight muscle relative to low-altitude sister-taxa. Convergent changes across high-altitude taxa included increased hydroxyacyl-coA dehydrogenase and succinate dehydrogenase activities, decreased lactate dehydrogenase, pyruvate kinase, creatine kinase, and cytochrome c oxidase activities, and increased myoglobin content. ATP synthase activity increased in only the longest established high-altitude taxa, whereas hexokinase activity increased in only newly established taxa. Therefore, changes in pathways of lipid oxidation, glycolysis, and mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation are common strategies to cope with high-altitude hypoxia, but some changes require longer evolutionary time to arise.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:This research was supported by funds from McMaster University, the Canadian Foundation for Innovation, the Ontario Ministry of Research and Innovation, and a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) Discovery Grant to GRS. This research was also supported by a NSF grant (IOS-0949439) to KGM and the Kushlan Endowment for Waterbird Biology and Conservation at the University of Miami. GRS is supported by the Canada Research Chairs Program, NJD was supported by an NSERC Postdoctoral Fellowship, and KGM is supported by the Kushlan Chair for Waterbird Biology and Conservation at the University of Miami.
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Dawson, Dr Neal
Creator Roles:
Dawson, N. J.Conceptualization, Data curation, Formal analysis, Validation, Investigation, Visualization, Methodology, Writing – original draft, Project administration, Writing – review and editing
Authors: Dawson, N. J., Alza, L., Nandal, G., Scott, G. R., and McCracken, K. G.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Biodiversity Animal Health and Comparative Medicine
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Biodiversity, One Health & Veterinary Medicine
Journal Name:eLife
Publisher:eLife Sciences Publications
ISSN:2050-084X
ISSN (Online):2050-084X
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2020 Dawson et al.
First Published:First published in eLife 9: e56259
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License
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