Developmental and evolutionary history affect survival in stressful environments.
AuthorHopkins, GR; Brodie, ED; French, SS
Source TitlePLoS One
PublisherPublic Library of Science (PLoS)
University of Melbourne Author/sHopkins, Gareth
AffiliationSchool of BioSciences
Document TypeJournal Article
CitationsHopkins, G. R., Brodie, E. D. & French, S. S. (2014). Developmental and evolutionary history affect survival in stressful environments.. PLoS One, 9 (4), pp.e95174-. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0095174.
Access StatusOpen Access
Open Access at PMChttp://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3991610
The world is increasingly impacted by a variety of stressors that have the potential to differentially influence life history stages of organisms. Organisms have evolved to cope with some stressors, while with others they have little capacity. It is thus important to understand the effects of both developmental and evolutionary history on survival in stressful environments. We present evidence of the effects of both developmental and evolutionary history on survival of a freshwater vertebrate, the rough-skinned newt (Taricha granulosa) in an osmotically stressful environment. We compared the survival of larvae in either NaCl or MgCl2 that were exposed to salinity either as larvae only or as embryos as well. Embryonic exposure to salinity led to greater mortality of newt larvae than larval exposure alone, and this reduced survival probability was strongly linked to the carry-over effect of stunted embryonic growth in salts. Larval survival was also dependent on the type of salt (NaCl or MgCl2) the larvae were exposed to, and was lowest in MgCl2, a widely-used chemical deicer that, unlike NaCl, amphibian larvae do not have an evolutionary history of regulating at high levels. Both developmental and evolutionary history are critical factors in determining survival in this stressful environment, a pattern that may have widespread implications for the survival of animals increasingly impacted by substances with which they have little evolutionary history.
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