Project/scholarship information

 
Name of project/scholarship Molecular mechanisms and evolutionary implications of social plasticity
Description According to classic evolutionary theory nonheritable phenotypic variation would seem to be irrelevant to evolutionary change, since adaptation by natural selection rather depends on heritable phenotypic variation produced by genetic variation. However, when the rate of genetic evolutionary change is outpaced by changes in the environment the need for adaptive change without genetic mutation emerges. In this scenario, the evolution of phenotypic plasticity is favored according to which environmental cues sensed by the organism lead the same genotype to produce different phenotypes depending on environmental conditions (i.e. reaction norm). Thus, despite the fact that the contribution of nonheritable phenotypic variation to evolutionary change appears to be a paradox, the evolution of mechanisms that generate it can be a common evolutionary phenomenon. Different traits show different evolutionary changes in plasticity, both in terms of the time lag to respond to the environmental cue and of the magnitude of the response. Among animals, behavioral traits exhibit both more rapid and stronger plasticity than morphological traits, which makes behavioral plasticity a key adaptive response to changing environmental conditions. At the proximate level behavioral plasticity depends on the development of a central nervous system which allows for rapid and integrated organismal responses in order to maintain homeostasis (or allostasis). Many of these responses are simple reflexes and fixed action patterns elicited by a stimulus in the environment, when it determinately predicts an appropriate response. However, when environmental complexity and ambiguity increases, the capacity to adaptively modify behavior, as a function of experience (learning) and context, is needed. One of the most ambiguous components of the environment is the social domain, since it is made of other behavioral agents with an inherent level of unpredictability of their actions, with whom the individual needs to interact. Hence, the ability of animals to regulate the expression of social behavior, as to adapt their behavioral output to specific situations in a complex and variable social world, is expected to depend on the evolution of plastic responses. These allow the same genotype to produce different behavioral phenotypes (social plasticity), rather than to genetically determine rules controlling fixed responses. Thus, social plasticity should be viewed as a key ecological performance trait that impacts Darwinian fitness. Here we propose an integrative framework for understanding the proximate mechanisms and ultimate consequences of social plasticity. According to this framework, social plasticity is achieved by rewiring or by biochemically switching nodes of the neural network underlying social behavior in response to perceived social information. Therefore, at the molecular level, it depends on the social regulation of gene expression, so that different neurogenomic states correspond to different behavioral responses and the switches between states are orchestrated by signaling pathways that interface the social environment and the genotype. At the evolutionary scale social plasticity can be seen as an adaptive trait that can be under positive selection when changes in the environment outpace the rate of genetic evolutionary change. However, when social plasticity is too costly or incomplete, behavioral consistency (behavioral syndromes) can emerge by directional selection which recruits gene modules corresponding to favored behavioral states in that environment. In this project we will address the following questions (Q): Q1. What are the mechanisms animals use for sensing and responding adaptively to specific environmental cues that trigger plastic responses? Q2. How can the same genome produce different social phenotypes in response to cues provided by the ecological and social environment? Q3. Is plasticity itself subject to selection and might therefore evolve? Q4. Have the mechanisms underlying plasticity in social behavior been co-opted to regulate plasticity in inter-specific interactions, among species with complex inter-specific relationships (e.g. mutualisms)? The choice of fish as study models is justified by the fact that teleosts are the most diverse and plastic taxa among vertebrates. Following Krogh’s principle, we have chosen what we considered to be the species of choice to most conveniently study each of these questions (Q1: zebrafish, tilapia; Q2: peacock blenny; Q3: zebrafish; Q4: cleaner wrasse). As a result of this project we expect to show how knowledge of the proximate mechanisms underlying social plasticity is crucial to understanding its costs, limits and evolutionary consequences, therefore highlighting the fact that proximate mechanisms of nonheritable phenotypic variation contribute to the dynamics of selection.
Funder FCT - Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia, I.P.
Funding program 3599-PPCDT
Project/scholarship ID 129982
Reference EXCL/BIA-ANM/0549/2012
FundRef URI http://www.fct.pt/apoios/projectos/consulta/vglobal_projecto.phtml.en?idProjecto=129982&idElemConcurso=7286
Start date Sat Jun 01 00:00:00 WEST 2013
End date Tue May 31 00:00:00 WEST 2016
Funding amount 310,000.00 €
 

Report information

 

Summary

Report date 2020-09-21 17:12:43
Number of documents 27

Documents by repository

arca 8
sapientia 3
ul 1
ispa 14
rum 1

Documents by document type

bookPart 1
doctoral thesis 3
journal article 22
master thesis 1

Documents by rightsAccess rights

restrictedAccess 9
openAccess 16
embargoedAccess 2

Documents

Audience effects in Oreochromis mossambicus males on a territorial intrusion context Roleira, António João Almeida Open Access Master thesis 2015 rum http://hdl.handle.net/1822/35716
Brain transcriptomic response to social eavesdropping in zebrafish (Danio rerio) Lopes, Joao Sollari; Abril-de-Abreu, Rodrigo; Oliveira, Rui Filipe Open Access Journal article 2015 ispa http://hdl.handle.net/10400.12/4281
Birth date predicts alternative life-history pathways in a fish with sequential reproductive tactics Fagundes, Teresa; Simões, Mariana G.; Saraiva, João Luis Vargas de Almeida; Ros, Albert F. H.; Gonçalves, David; Oliveira, Rui Filipe Restricted Access Journal article 2015 ispa http://hdl.handle.net/10400.12/4310
Assessment of fight outcome is needed to activate socially driven transcriptional changes in the zebrafish brain Oliveira, Rui Filipe; Simões, José Miguel; Teles, Magda; Oliveira, Catarina R.; Becker, Jorg D.; Lopes, João Sollari Restricted Access Journal article 2016 ispa http://hdl.handle.net/10400.12/4518
Agonistic interactions elicit rapid changes in brain nonapeptide levels in zebrafish Teles, Magda; Gozdowska, Magdalena; Kalamarz-Kubiak, Hanna; Kulczykowska, Ewa; Oliveira, Rui Filipe Restricted Access Journal article 2016 ispa http://hdl.handle.net/10400.12/4701
Social buffering of fear in zebrafish Faustino, Ana Isabel Soares Open Access Doctoral thesis 2016 ispa http://hdl.handle.net/10400.12/4902
Quantifying aggressive behavior in zebrafish Teles, Magda; Oliveira, Rui Filipe Restricted Access Book part 2016 ispa http://hdl.handle.net/10400.12/4960
Social network predicts loss of fertilizations in nesting males of a fish with alternative reproductive tactics Cardoso, Sara D.; Faustino, Ana Isabel Soares; Costa, Silvia S.; Valério, Fábio; Gonçalves, David; Oliveira, Rui Filipe Restricted Access Journal article 2016 ispa http://hdl.handle.net/10400.12/5274
Mechanisms of social buffering of fear in zebrafish Faustino, Ana Isabel Soares; Tacão-Monteiro, André; Oliveira, Rui Filipe Restricted Access Journal article 2017 ispa http://hdl.handle.net/10400.12/5423
Audience effects in territorial defense of male cichlid fish are associated with differential patterns of activation of the brain social decision-making network Roleira, António; Oliveira, Gonçalo A.; Lopes, João Sollari; Oliveira, Rui Filipe Open Access Journal article 2017 ispa http://hdl.handle.net/10400.12/5588
Temporal variation in brain transcriptome is associated with the expression of female mimicry as a sequential male alternative reproductive tactic in fish Cardoso, Sara D.; Gonçalves, David; Goesmann, Alexander; Canário, Adelino V. M.; Oliveira, Rui Filipe Embargoed Access Journal article 2017 ispa http://hdl.handle.net/10400.12/5907
Temporal variation in brain transcriptome is associated with the expression of female mimicry as a sequential male alternative reproductive tactic in fish Cardoso, Sara; Gonçalves, David; Goesmann, Alexander; Canário, Adelino V. M.; Oliveira, Rui Filipe Restricted Access Journal article 2018 ispa http://hdl.handle.net/10400.12/6986
Dear enemies elicit lower androgen responses to territorial challenges than unfamiliar intruders in a cichlid fish Aires, Rui F.; Oliveira, Gonçalo A.; Oliveira, Tânia Sofia Ferreira de; Ros, Albert F. H.; Oliveira, Rui Filipe Open Access Journal article 2015 ispa http://hdl.handle.net/10400.12/4028
Social interactions elicit rapid shifts in functional connectivity in the social decision-making network of zebrafish Teles, Magda; Almeida, Olinda; Lopes, João Sollari; Oliveira, Rui Filipe Restricted Access Journal article 2015 ispa http://hdl.handle.net/10400.12/4124
Socially driven changes in neural and behavioural plasticity in zebrafish Teles, Magda Cristina, 1981- Open Access Doctoral thesis 2015 ul http://hdl.handle.net/10451/22742
Androgen response to social competition in a shoaling fish Teles, Magda; Oliveira, Rui Filipe Restricted Access Journal article 2016 ispa http://hdl.handle.net/10400.12/4366
Social odors conveying dominance and reproductive information induce rapid physiological and neuromolecular changes in a cichlid fish Simões, José M.; Barata, Eduardo Nuno; Harris, Rayna M.; O'Connell, Lauren A.; Hofmann, Hans A.; Oliveira, Rui F. Open Access Journal article 2015 sapientia http://hdl.handle.net/10400.1/11324
Birth date predicts alternative life-history pathways in a fish with sequential reproductive tactics Fagundes, Teresa; Simões, Mariana G.; L. Saraiva, João; Ros, Albert F. H.; Gonçalves, David; Oliveira, Rui F. Open Access Journal article 2015 sapientia http://hdl.handle.net/10400.1/11202
RNA-SEQ applied to the peacock blenny Salaria pavo: unveiling the gene networks and signalling pathways behind phenotypic plasticity in a littoral fish Cardoso, Sara de Jesus Dias Open Access Doctoral thesis 2019 sapientia http://hdl.handle.net/10400.1/12728
Androgen modulation of social decision-making mechanisms in the brain: an integrative and embodied perspective Oliveira, Gonçalo A.; Oliveira, Rui F. Open Access Journal article 2014 arca http://hdl.handle.net/10400.7/362
Dear Enemies Elicit Lower Androgen Responses to Territorial Challenges than Unfamiliar Intruders in a Cichlid Fish Aires, Rui F.; Oliveira, Gonçalo A.; Oliveira, Tânia F.; Ros, Albert F. H.; Oliveira, Rui F. Open Access Journal article 2015 arca http://hdl.handle.net/10400.7/389
Social odors conveying dominance and reproductive information induce rapid physiological and neuromolecular changes in a cichlid fish Simões, José M; Barata, Eduardo N; Harris, Rayna M; O’Connell, Lauren A; Hofmann, Hans A; Oliveira, Rui F Open Access Journal article 2015 arca http://hdl.handle.net/10400.7/405
Brain Transcriptomic Response to Social Eavesdropping in Zebrafish (Danio rerio) Lopes, João Sollari; Abril-de-Abreu, Rodrigo; Oliveira, Rui F. Open Access Journal article 2015 arca http://hdl.handle.net/10400.7/546
Social Plasticity Relies on Different Neuroplasticity Mechanisms across the Brain Social Decision-Making Network in Zebrafish Teles, Magda C.; Cardoso, Sara D.; Oliveira, Rui F. Open Access Journal article 2016 arca http://hdl.handle.net/10400.7/553
Mechanisms of social buffering of fear in zebrafish Faustino, Ana I.; Tacão-Monteiro, André; Oliveira, Rui F. Open Access Journal article 2017 arca http://hdl.handle.net/10400.7/741
Audience Effects in Territorial Defense of Male Cichlid Fish Are Associated with Differential Patterns of Activation of the Brain Social Decision-Making Network Roleira, António; Oliveira, Gonçalo A.; Lopes, João S.; Oliveira, Rui F. Open Access Journal article 2017 arca http://hdl.handle.net/10400.7/765
Temporal variation in brain transcriptome is associated with the expression of female mimicry as a sequential male alternative reproductive tactic in fish Cardoso, Sara D.; Gonçalves, David; Goesmann, Alexander; Canário, Adelino V.M.; Oliveira, Rui F. Embargoed Access Journal article 2017 arca http://hdl.handle.net/10400.7/807