A fourth episode adds to this series dedicated to evolutionary convergences. In previous episodes, we have seen that convergence is parallel acquisitions of similar structures in different lineages but subject to equivalent environmental conditions. We have seen examples of convergence ecomorphological (ecology + morphology) as in bats fisherwomen, the Myotis and in nectar bats of the family Phyllostomidae. Even more impressive, convergence may exist molecular level ! This was discovered American and Chinese researchers in Cetaceans (specifically in toothed whales or Odontoceti) and Microchiroptera *, that use ultrasound the mechanismecholocation (= biosonar) to lead and drive. The gene encoding the prestine, protein used to hearing and sound amplification, in these animals shows a very similar molecular mechanism (He et al. 2008 & 2010, Jones 2010, Liu et al. 2010).
So, Examples of convergence are increasing in the literature and further work in this area still promises many discoveries equally interesting about the evolution of life.
Yann for Chiroblog
Microchiroptera * : Two sub-orders were conventionally accepted : the Microchiroptera (small relative size and capable of echolocation) and Megachiroptera (large relative ; Dobson 1875). Recently, the order was recut into two new sub-orders to break the paraphyletic Microchiroptera : the Yinpterochiroptera and Yangochiroptera (Teeling et al. 2002 ; Teeling et al. 2005).
Li, G., Wang, J., Rossiter, S. J., Jones, G., Cotton, J. A., & Zhang, S. (2008). The hearing gene Prestin reunites echolocating bats. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 105(37), 13959–64. two:10.1073/pnas.0802097105
Liu, Y., Cotton, J. A., Shen, B., Han, X., Rossiter, S. J., & Zhang, S. (2010). Convergent sequence evolution between echolocating bats and dolphins. Current biology : CB, 20(2), R53–4. two:10.1016/j.cub.2009.11.058
Teeling, It. C., The. Madsen, R. A. Van den Bussche, W. In. de Jong, M. J. Stanhope a M. S. Springer. 2002. Microbat paraphyly and the convergent evolution of a key innovation in Old World rhinolophoid microbats. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA 99: 1431-1436.