Life Lines by Dr. Dolittle

Sponsored by the American Physiological Society

White Nose Syndrome – What do we know now?

white_nose

Image source: Smithsonian Institution

You may recall prior Lifelines posts discussing the devastating effects of white nose syndrome (WNS) in bats. WNS, Pseudogymnoascus destructans is a fungus responsible for the deaths of millions of North American bats over the last ten years. In a new study published in the American Journal of Physiology – Regulatory, Integrative and Comparative Physiology, Dr. Craig Willis examined the effects of repeated arousals from hibernation induced by the fungal infection. Data from this new study provides evidence that infected animals do have higher metabolisms while hibernating than non-infected animals. In addition, infected animals lose more water through evaporation. Both of these effects are thought to contribute to the demise of infected bats. The hope now is to use this knowledge to design treatments for infected bats.

Source:

LP McGuire, HW Mayberry, CKR Willis. White-nose syndrome increases torpid metabolic rate and e vaporative water loss in White-nose syndrome increases torpid metabolic rate and evaporative water loss in hibernating bats. American Journal of Physiology – Regulatory, Integrative and Comparative Physiology. Published 23 August 2017 Vol. no., DOI: 10.1152/ajpregu.00058.2017

Categories: Comparative Physiology

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