Journal of Comparative Physiology A

, Volume 196, Issue 2, pp 155–164 | Cite as

Distress call-induced gene expression in the brain of the Indian short-nosed fruit bat, Cynopterus sphinx

  • Ambigapathy Ganesh
  • Hanumanthan Raghuram
  • Parthasarathy T. Nathan
  • Ganapathy Marimuthu
  • Koilmani Emmanuvel Rajan
Original Paper

Abstract

Individuals in distress emit audible vocalizations to either warn or inform conspecifics. The Indian short-nosed fruit bat, Cynopterus sphinx, emits distress calls soon after becoming entangled in mist nets, which appear to attract conspecifics. Phase I of these distress calls is longer and louder, and includes a secondary peak, compared to phase II. Activity-dependent expression of egr-1 was examined in free-ranging C. sphinx following the emissions and responses to a distress call. We found that the level of expression of egr-1 was higher in bats that emitted a distress call, in adults that responded, and in pups than in silent bats. Up-regulated cDNA was amplified to identify the target gene (TOE1) of the protein Egr-1. The observed expression pattern Toe1 was similar to that of egr-1. These findings suggest that the neuronal activity related to recognition of a distress call and an auditory feedback mechanism induces the expression of Egr-1. Co-expression of egr-1 with Toe1 may play a role in initial triggering of the genetic mechanism that could be involved in the consolidation or stabilization of distress call memories.

Keywords

Distress call Chiroptera Cynopterus sphinx egr-Toe

Abbreviations

IEG

Immediate-early gene

Egr-1

Early growth response 1 gene

TOE1

Target of Egr1

PN

Postnatal day

RT–PCR

Reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ambigapathy Ganesh
    • 1
  • Hanumanthan Raghuram
    • 2
  • Parthasarathy T. Nathan
    • 3
  • Ganapathy Marimuthu
    • 3
  • Koilmani Emmanuvel Rajan
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Animal Science, School of Life SciencesBharathidasan UniversityTiruchirappalliIndia
  2. 2.Centre for Ecological Sciences, Indian Institute of ScienceBangaloreIndia
  3. 3.Department of Animal Behavior and Physiology, School of Biological SciencesMadurai Kamaraj UniversityMaduraiIndia

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