Abstracts of Symposia

Theme: Molecular and integrative physiology


1. Ion Homeostasis and Functional Regulation in Aquatic Animals: Molecular and Integrative Studies

Organizers (CSZ and JSCPB):

Greg Goss, University of Alberta, Canada

Toyoji Kaneko, University of Tokyo, Japan

Pung-Pung Hwang, Academia Sinica, Taiwan


      To cope with aquatic environment with harsh ionic/osmotic gradients, aquatic animals have a more challenging task to maintain their internal ion homeostasis compared with terrestrial vertebrates. Given the recent advances in molecular/cellular physiological approaches and model species, recent progress has emerged in the issues relevant to body fluid ion homeostasis in aquatic animals including (1) functional analyses of ion transport pathways, ion transporters and ionocytes, (2) effects of environment on the expression and function of ion transporters, (3) hormonal control on the functional regulation of epithelial transport and (4) comparisons between species. In this symposium, we aim to bring together researchers using molecular/cell biological, functional genomics or model species approaches and who are interested in the related issues in diverse species.

      The specific goal of this symposium is to present the state-of-the-art on how aquatic animals achieve their body fluid ion homeostasis. We anticipate that this symposium will stimulate a dynamic exchange of ideas and foster future collaboration and attract a large audience to attend the conference.

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Agnieszka Dymowska (University of Alberta, Canada)  — ASIC4.2 is involved in Na+ uptake in zebrafish (Danio rerio) larvae.         

Soichi Watanabe (University of Tokyo, Japan), Toyoji Kaneko  — Prolactin and cortisol mediate the maintenance of the ionocytes expressing Na+, Cl- cotransporter in Mozambique tilapia: Exploring with a newly-developed gill filament incubation system.

Yung-Che Tseng (National Taiwan Normal University, Taiwan)  — A convergent model representing proton and ammonia transport through epithelium in cephalopods.

Mayu Inokuchi (University of Tokyo, Japan) — Distributional changes in gill ionocytes in Japanese sea bass after transfer from seawater to freshwater.

Li-Yih Lin (National Taiwan Normal University, Taiwan) — Acid-base regulation is linked to salt excretion of ionocytes in seawater-acclimated medaka (Oxyzias latipes).

Chris M. Wood (University of British Columbia, Cadana) — The osmorespiratory compromise: regulation of paracellular and transcellular permeabilities of the gills.

Weiqun Lu (Shanghai Ocean University, China) — A study of calcium homeostasis regulation in the euryhaline flounder.


2. Insect Molecular Biology - the Postgenomic Era

Organizers (DZG):

Klaus H. Hoffmann, University of Bayreuth, Germany


      A major challenge in current entomology is to integrate different levels of organization, from cellular mechanisms to functions in ecosystem. In the postgenomic era of the 21st century various fields of study have become possible, which use the information of fully sequenced insect genomes. However, many recently developed molecular techniques for studying gene functions can also be used if only partial sequence informations are available. With these tools, entomologists are able to answer questions in insect biochemistry, physiology, and endocrinology, but also illuminate very complex behavioral and ecological aspects.

      The symposium provides a mixture of topical reviews and current research work. In several talks unpublished data are presented showing novel applications for the use of omics technologies in the postgenomic era. All speakers are authors in a forthcoming book on Insect Molecular Biology and Ecology (CRC Press).

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Wilhelm Boland (MPI Chemical Ecology, Germany) — 3-Nitropropionic esters of isoxazoline glycosides protect leaf beetle larvae: a new defensive concept.

Antje Burse (MPI Chemical Ecology, Germany) — Molecular mechanisms behind the evolution of a plant-derived chemical defense in the model system Chrysomelina leaf beetles.

Shin Goto (Osaka City University, Japan) — Molecular dissection of insect seasonality using RNAi: roles of the circadian clock genes.

Klaus H. Hoffmann (University of Bayreuth, Germany) — RNA-interference- a tool for evaluating hormonal functions in insects.

Martin Neuenfeldt (University of Bayreuth, Germany) — Silks from insects - from natural diversities to technical applications.

Kenneth B. Storey (Carleton University, Canada) — Frontiers in cold hardiness: an "omics" world.

Michael Baum (Universität Hamburg - Biozentrum Grindel, Germany) — The path of the toxin: investigating transport mechanisms of secondary host plant compounds in a leaf beetle.

Gabriella Köblös (Plant Protection Institute CAR HAS) — Identification, transcriptional analysis and functional assays of Pheromone Biosynthesis Activating Neuropeptide (PBAN) in the European corn borer, Ostrinia nubilalis.      


3. Early Life Experience and its Consequences for Adult Life and Future Generations

Symposium organizers:

Ela Król, University of Aberdeen, UK

David Hazlerigg, University of Tromso, Norway


      Evidence is growing that environmental conditions experienced by animals and humans in early life may substantially alter not only their adult phenotype (via direct environmental exposure of embryos/juveniles), but also the phenotype of future unexposed generations (via transgenerational mechanisms acting most likely through germ cells). Mammals are particularly sensitive to the environmental conditions experienced in utero (primarily through the transplacental passage of nutrients, metabolic signals and toxins) and early postnatally (through milk and the exchange of microbiota). Perturbations of the intrauterine environment in humans and laboratory model rodents have been linked to the increased risk of developing cardiovascular, metabolic and neurological diseases, which can be then transmitted by both parental lineages to subsequent generations. The effects of early life experience on the adult and future generation phenotypes are epigenetic in nature and mediated by a number of molecular processes involving DNA methylation, histone modifications, changes in chromatin structure, and production of non-coding microRNA molecules.

      This symposium aims to provide a platform for human and animal physiologists to exchange their ideas on the importance of early life experience in ‘programming' the phenotype for later life and future generations. The program of the symposium is well balanced and covers the novel empirical work performed on animals and humans, some conceptual perspectives on how we should interpret the transgenerational effects in the context of comparative physiology and evolutionary processes, and recent advances in understanding the potential molecular communication between mother and young via milk microRNAs.

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Pat Monaghan & Neil Metcalfe (University of Glasgow, UK) — Early life effects on later life performance: mechanisms and time scales.

Cristina Saenz De Miera (University of Strasbourg, France) & David Hazlerigg (University of Tromso, Norway) — Maternal photoperiodic programming of reproductive development.

Susan Ozanne (University of Cambridge, UK) — Nutrition during pregnancy: consequences for the next generation.

Jonathan Seckl (University of Edinburgh, UK) — Prenatal glucocorticoids and programming of adult disease.

John Speakman (University of Aberdeen, UK & CAS, China) — Effects of early life exposure to high fat diet on brain development.

Vengamanaidu Modepalli & Christophen Lefevre (Deakin University, Australia) — Differential expression of milk miRNA during the lactation cycle of the marsupial tammar wallaby (Macropus eugenii).


4. Telomeres and Life Histories

Symposium organizers:

Pat Monaghan , University of Glasgow, UK

Francois Criscuolo, CNRS Strasbourg, France


      Telomeres are a highly conserved area of DNA at the chromosome ends that play a key role in the maintenance of genome stability in multicellular animals, and influence cell replicative potential. Telomere dynamics are intricately involved in the balance of cell loss and renewal in different tissues, and in the pattern of tissue and organism senescence and longevity. The amount of telomeric DNA lost at each round of cell division is also influenced by extrinsic factors, e.g. oxidative stress inside cells and also exposure of the individual to a range of environmental stressors. The optimal pattern of telomere loss, and the balance of restoration and repair, are linked to life histories. Telomere dynamics have largely been studied in the context of human disease and ageing, using cultured cells and model laboratory organisms. However, in recent years there has been a growth of interest in investigating telomere dynamics in healthy, non-model organisms from diverse taxa.

      In this symposium we will discuss the new, interdisciplinary research agenda that is emerging in which researchers are beginning to ask how telomere length relates to variation in environmental conditions and life histories, how telomere biology relates to among-species and among-individual variation in ageing and longevity, and what selection pressures and mechanistic trade-offs might drive the evolution of telomere dynamics.

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Pat Monaghan & Francois Criscuolo  (University of Glasgow, UK; CNRS Strasbourg, France) — Telomeres and life history, an introduction.

Steve Smith (Konrad Lorenz Institute of Ethology, Austria) — Telomere dynamics in hibernating mammals: effects of prolonged hypometabolism and interbout arousals.

Emma Vitikainen (University of Exeter, UK) — Telomere dynamics and life history allocation in a wild mammal.

Jose Noguera (University of Glasgow, UK) — Early life nutrition, telomere dynamics and life history plasticity in birds.

Muhammad Asghar (Karolinska Institute, Sweden) — Hidden cost of infection: Chronic malaria erodes telomeres and lifespan.

Franz Hoelzl (University of Veterinary Medicine, Austria) — Eat, celibate and elongate your telomeres: Influence of supplemental feeding on telomere dynamics in a small arboreal rodent.

Mats Olsson (University of Sydney, Australia) — Morph-specific telomere dynamics and responses to TA65 treatment in an Australian Lizard.

Joanna Sudyka (Jagiellonian University, Poland) — Does infected wild passerines get shorter telomeres?               


5. Thyroid Hormones as Master Regulators: Comparative and Developmental Perspectives

Symposium organizers:

Edward Dzialowski, University of North Texas, Denton, USA


      For decades, our understanding of the importance of thyroid hormones (tri-iodo-thyronine and thyroxine) in vertebrate physiology was confined to (i) metamorphosis in amphibians, and (ii) setting of basal metabolic rate in placental mammals. Recent advances in assay techniques have led to an explosion of studies examining the role of thyroid hormones in somatic tissue growth, modulation of oxidative stress, maturation of metabolic mechanisms, and development. With their conserved molecular structure, thyroid hormones should theoretically exert identical effects on the vertebrate body, but new reports suggest that these actions are highly temperature-dependent. Thermal environmental influences can modulate action of thyroid hormones in poikilothermic vertebrates – a topic of particular relevance given the current trend of global warming. Further, thyroid hormone derivatives, such as T2, previously thought of as biologically inactive, are now implicated in cellular signalling. We are yet to fully understand their downstream effects, both at the membrane and nuclear levels of the cell. The wide-ranging effects of thyroid hormones – from membrane-level to whole body physiology – are a perfect example of the need for integrative and comparative approaches to physiology. The reductionist approach has been constrained to thyroid hormone function in the placental mammal model, and this has limited our ability to uncover their full physiological significance. Our symposium remedies this by underscoring the diversity of thyroid hormone action in a plethora of non-traditional vertebrate models – from teleost fishes to mammals, to reptiles and birds.

      Our symposium brings together researchers from across the world, each specialising in a different aspect of thyroid hormone physiology. ICCPB 2015 provides a perfect venue for an informed debate on the overlapping role of thyroid hormones across seemingly disparate fields of biology (physiology, biochemistry, evolution, and behaviour), and provides a unique opportunity to identify areas for collaborative research, advancing our knowledge of thyroid physiology.

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Frank Seebacher (University of Sydney, Australia) — The evolution of endothermy is explained by thyroid hormone mediated responses to cold in early vertebrates.

Alexander Little (University of Sydney, Australia) — Thyroid hormones regulate thermal acclimation in fish (Danio rerio).

Claude Duchamp (University of Lyon, France) — Thyroid modulation of oxidative balance in birds.

Sarah Goy Sirsat (University of North Texas, USA) — How to build a Furnace: The role of T3 in development of endothermy in altricial birds, including the red-winged blackbird (Agelaius phoeniceus).

Tushar Sirsat (University of North Texas, USA) — Effects of thyroid hormone manipulations on growth & metabolism of american alligator hatchlings.


Theme: Neurophysiology


6. Neural Basis of Olfaction: Insight into How the Olfactory System Can Evolve

Organizers (JSCPB):

Yoichi Seki, Tokyo University of Pharmacy and Life Sciences, Japan

Hany Dweck, Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology, Germany


      Insects rely on olfaction for crucial behaviors such as searching for food and mating partners. Odor information is transformed into neural activity at the peripheral nervous system, then processed in the central nervous system and eventually perceived by animals. However, it is challenging to reveal underlying neural mechanisms of olfactory perception and how these neural mechanisms have adapted to meet the ecological needs.

      We will present recent progress in intensive physiological and behavioral approaches to reveal the neural basis of olfaction and try to prove the causal relationship between the neural mechanisms and the adaptive behaviors. By comparing the findings from different species and approaches, this session aims to provide new insights into general principles of olfactory processing and how the olfactory system can evolve.

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Yoichi Seki (Tokyo University of Pharmacy and Life Sciences, Japan) — Olfactory representation from the periphery to higher brain centers in Drosophila melanogaster.

Julie Carcaud (CNRS - Université Paris Descartes, France) — Olfactory coding in the dual olfactory pathway of the honeybee.

Xin-Cheng Zhao (Henan Agricultural University, China) — The antennal lobe organization and function in the related species of heliothine moths.

Hany Dweck (Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology, Germany) — Pheromones mediating copulation and attraction in Drosophila.

Zsolt Karpati (Plant Protection Institute, Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Hungary) — Glomerular size matters in pheromone preference of the European corn borer central nervous system.

Martin Andersson (Lund University, Sweden) — The ecological and physiological significance of olfactory sensory neuron co-localization.  


7. Chemical World Sensing: A Joining Scope of Chemical Ecology and Neuroscience

Organizers (JSCPB):

Ryohei Kanzaki, University of Tokyo, Japan

Mamiko Ozaki, Kobe University, Japan


     Chemical world surrounds animals under various and variable ecological conditions. Animals extract necessary information from the chemical world and discriminate between positively and negatively concerning ones. Using those information, they have to make decision for every behavioral switching. Thus, they evolved particular sensory, processing and motor systems to exhibit proper response to environmental chemicals of pheromones, food flavors or other natural odors.

      In this symposium, we will demonstrate recent progress in interdisciplinary work of such a highly adaptive system, attempting to combine molecular, physiological and behavioral studies plus computational reconstruction of neural network with robotic techniques.

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Mamiko Ozaki (Kobe University, Japan) — Dietary preference by food flavor: Cross-modal pathway of the gustatory and olfactory inputs.

Jean-Francois Ferveur (University of Bourgogne, France) — Dietary rescue of altered metabolism gene reveals unexpected Drosophila mating cues.

Shannon Olsson (Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, India) — Naturalist-inspired chemical ecology: targeting decision making in nature.

Bente Gunnveig Berg (Nowegian University of Science and Technology, Norway)  — Mapping behaviourally relevant odour signals from the periphery to higher order centres in the helithine moth brain.

Ryohei Kanzaki (University of Tokyo, Japan) — Neural basis of pheromone orientation in the silkmoth: from genes, neural networks, and behavior to robots.

Marianna Zhukovskaya (Sechenov Institute of Evolutionary Physiology and Biochemistry Russian Academy of Sciences,   Russian Federation) — Pheromone and non-pheromone odor cleanup from an insect antenna: the role of grooming.


8. Photoreception Regulating Animal Physiology and Behavior

Organizers (JSCPB):

Daisuke Kojima, The University of Tokyo, Japan

Florian Raible, University of Vienna, Austria


     Light is a major environmental signal for animals. They utilize photic information for vision as well as for regulating a variety of physiological functions and behaviors, such as circadian rhythms, seasonal reproduction, pupillary contraction, body color change, etc. These "non-visual" physiological functions and behaviors are regulated not only by the ocular photoreceptors, but also by the non-ocular photoreceptors, for example, those present in the brain. Even in our eyes, we have the non-classical photoreceptor cells dedicated for these functions (ipRGCs) in addition to the conventional rod and cone photoreceptor cells.

     In this symposium, we will discuss recent progresses on the molecular mechanism of ocular and non-ocular photoreceptions, their neural and hormonal signaling, and the behaviors and physiological outputs.

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Florian Raible (University of Vienna, Austria) — Dissecting the nature of non-cephalic putative photoreceptors in the marine bristleworm Platynereis dumerilii.

Akihisa Terakita (Osaka City University, Japan) — Wavelength discrimination in the pineal photoreception of the lower vertebrates.

Timothy Brown (University of Manchester, UK) — Colour regulates mammalian biological timing.

Daisuke Kojima (University of Tokyo, Japan) — Retinal photoreceptors for body color change in zebrafish.

Bruno Fontinha (Max F. Perutz Laboratories, Austria) — A deep brain photoreceptor involvement in innate perceptual discriminatory behaviour in medaka fish larvae.              


9. Comparative Physiology of Gastrointestinal Tract and Enteric Nervous System

Organizers (JSCPB):

Makoto Kurokawa, Tokyo Metropolitan University, Japan

Hiroshi Shimizu, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology, KSA

Jozef Vanden Broeck, University of Leuven, Belgium


      In a wide variety of animals, the enteric nervous system (ENS) innervates the gastrointestinal tract and is capable of autonomous regulation of intestinal and digestive functions.  The ENS consists of a network of numerous intrinsic neurons and has been referred to as "a second brain" because of its size and complexity.  Recent studies on the ENS of various invertebrates show that the neural net uniquely acts to control specialized functions of the tract, since the structure and function of gastrointestinal tract varies depending on the specific diet, feeding behaviour, life cycle, etc. of the species, even within the same phylum.

      In this symposium, we will discuss about evolutionary aspects of the nervous system by showing diversity and universality in structure and function of the ENS and its interactions with the CNS in controlling digestive functions.  The speakers will cover different metazoan phyla, from Cnidaria to mammals, including Hydra, gastropods, insects, custaceans and others.  The principle of the ‘second brain' in these animals, as discussed in this symposium, may constitute one of the less explored aspects in Neuroscience.

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Hiroshi Shimizu (King Abdullah University of Science and Technology, KSA) — Digestive movements in Hydra: Regional distribution of the capacity of esophageal reflex and peristaltic reflex movements.

Jozef Vanden Broeck (University of Leuven, Belgium) — Peptides and peptide receptors controlling food intake and digestion in locusts.

Amir Ayali (Tel Aviv University, Israel) — Neuromodulation for behavior in the insect stomatogastric nervous system.

Kosuke Tanaka (Kyorin University, Japan) — Neural control of the hindgut in a penaeid shrimp, Marsupenaeus japonicus.

Makoto Kurokawa (Tokyo Metropolitan University, Japan) — Comparative physiology of rhythmic movements of the gastrointestinal tract regulated by the enteric nervous system in gastropods (Mollusca).

Aida Sanchez Bretano — (Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Spain) Anatomical distribution of ghrelin peptide and preproghrelin and ghrelin receptor ghs-r1a genes expression in forebrain and gastrointestinal tract of goldfish (Carassius auratus).         


10. The Role of Monoamines in Modulating Behavior

Symposium organizers:

John Swallow, University of Colorado, USA

Jaime Grace, University of Colorado, USA

Andrew Bubak, University of Colorado, USA


      Monoamines, such as serotonin, dopamine, and noradrenaline, have a variety of essential physiological roles in modulating animal behavior.  Furthermore, the evolutionary conservation of these aminergic systems spans across both vertebrates and invertebrates, having comparable effects in such diverse processes as learning and memory, aggression, mating behaviors and reproduction, stress responses, and locomotion.  Outstanding research is currently being conducted in this field, uncovering remarkable similarities in neural circuitries even among highly divergent taxa, such as Drosophila and humans. Investigating the neural mechanisms involved in the monoaminergic modulation of behavior across a variety of taxonomically distant species can provide researchers with a better understanding of the origins and functions of these systems.

      The goal of this symposium is to provide a venue in which colleagues, researching invertebrates and vertebrates, both model and nonmodel, can present their recent and groundbreaking work in this exciting area of biology.  We hope this symposium will encourage and stimulate a dialogue on the similarities of monoaminergic function in a wide variety of animals and ultimately promote future comparative approaches when investigating behavioral modulation.

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Andrew Bubak & John Swallow (University of Colorado, USA)  — Serotonergic mediation of aggression and opponent assessment in stalk-eyed flies.

Michael Greene (University of Colorado, USA) — The self-organization of pavement ant wars: Individual decision making and brain monoamines.

Ben Greenwood (University of Colorado, USA) — Monoamines are critical for the ability of exercise to modulate brain function and behaviour.

Paul A. Stevenson (University of Leipzig, Germany) — Controlling the decision to fight or flee – the roles of octopamine and nitric oxide in cricket aggression.

Brian Smith (Arizona State University, USA) — Biogenic amines mediate opposite forms of learning and synaptic plasticity in the honey bee.

Markus Thamm (University of Wurzberg, Germany) — Monoamine receptors and honey bee behavior.

Svante Winberg (Uppsala University, Sweden) — Role of monoamines in modulating fish behaviour.

Dorothea Eisenhardt (Freie University, Germany) — Octopamine underlies the honeybee's physiological response to hunger stress.

Wolfgang Blenau (University of Cologne, Germany) — The salivary glands of Calliphora vicina as a model system for analysing the cellular actions of serotonin and crosstalk between intracellular signalling pathways.

Stefania Panaitof (University of Nebraska at Kearney, United States) — Biparental behavior in the burying beetle, Nicrophorus orbicollis: a role for dopamine?             

Ewa Prawdzik (Jagiellonian University, Poland) — The effect of dopamine and noradrenaline reuptake inhibitor on swim-induced aerobic metabolism in bank voles from a selection experiment.   

Heleen Verlinden (KU Leuven, Belgium) — Monoamine receptors and swarming behaviour in locusts.

Theme: Physiology of biological rhythms


11. Biological Timing System Using Circadian Clocks in Invertebrates

Organizers  (JSCPB):

Elzbieta Pyza, Jagiellonian University, Poland

Sakiko Shiga, Osaka City University, Japan


      Studies on molecular and neural components of the circadian clock system have progressed in different organisms and its universal design has been understood. Now the most important question is how the circadian clocks regulate animals' physiology and behaviour. Circadian clock is not only generating daily behavioural rhythms, but also brain rhythms, such as rhythmic changes in neuronal plasticity, and also constituting a developmental gate which occurs at a fixed time of the day once in a whole life. Also the circadian clock is used for day length measurement in photoperiodic control of diapause and other rhythmic events with a period of multiples of 24 h.

      This symposium will discuss recent advancement on different biological timing systems, using circadian clocks, in invertebrates.

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Kenji Tomioka (Okayama University, Japan) — An approach to the photoperiodic time-measurement mechanism in the cricket, Modicogryllus siamensis.

Jolanta Gorska-Andrzejak (Jagiellonian University, Poland) — Glia-related circadian modulation of neuronal circuits in the visual system of Diptera.

Christian Wegener (University of Würzburg, Germany) — Timing of eclosion behaviour in Drosophila.

Sakiko Shiga (Osaka City University, Japan) — Circabidian rhythm in the large black chafer Holotrichia parallela.

Anthony Zera (University of Nebraska, USA) — Morph-specific daily rhythms in global gene expression and the juvenile hormone titer in the wing-polymorphic cricket, Gryllus firmus.

Aleksandra Skawina (University of Warsaw, Poland) — Daily and seasonal patterns in serotonin levels in hemolymph and tissues of the freshwater mussels Unio tumidus.    


12. Molecular Level Approaches to Circadian Rhythm and Photoperiodism in Vertebrates

Organizers (JSCPB):

Yoshitaka Fukada, University of Tokyo, Japan

Steven Brown, University of Zurich, Switzerland


      The molecular level approaches to the circadian clock systems have provided a spreading knowledge of the mechanisms underlying the 24-hours oscillating clock in various animal species. The pace of the oscillator and its phase are regulated by ambient light, which converges a significant circadian variation of the pacemakers into the clocks generating just 24-hours rhythms. The temporal information is further combined with signals from light onset and offset within the day, providing the basis for photoperiodism underlying seasonal regulation of animal physiology. Recent studies in this decade have identified molecules and the mechanisms responsible for determining these biological timing.

      This session aims at exchanging opinions and discussion about the recent development on the chronobiology and its related fields.

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

David Whitmore (University College of London, UK) — The zebrafish circadian clock: its regulation of the cell cycle in cell culture and during embryo development.

Steven Brown (University of Zurich, Switzerland) — Genetic and epigenetic mechanisms of circadian plasticity.

Yoshitaka Fukada (University of Tokyo, Japan) — Circadian clock-regulated physiologies in mouse SCN/hippocampus and chicken pineal gland.

Takashi Yoshimura (Nagoya University, Japan) — Understanding the mechanism of vertebrate photoperiodism by comparative approach.

Kazuhiro Yagita (Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine, Japan) — Cellular differentiation and circadian clock development in mammals.

Maria Nathalia Moraes (University of Sao Paulo, Brazil) — TRPA1 transcription is altered in the absence of TRPV1: Clock molecular machinery regulation in Mus musculus liver.


13. Biological Rhythms in Non-mammalian Vertebrates


Ewa Kulczykowska, Institute of Oceanology PAS, Poland

F. Javier Sánchez Vázquez, University of Murcia, Spain


      Biological rhythms such as daily, tidal, weekly, seasonal, and annual have been widely observed in organisms on Earth and are driven by biological clocks. It has long been assumed that organisms have their own internal biological clocks, which are reset by environmental cues (Zeitgebers), thus keeping them synchronized with the external environment. The clock itself is a chemically based oscillating system within cells. The oscillators rely on molecular feedback loops. But how do organisms use it to tell time and synchronize biological rhythms? Certain similarities can be found in the circadian biological clocks of most organisms. What is so special about biological clock in non- mammalian vertebrates? Where is the body's master clock – in retina? inside the brain? in pineal? What is the function of biological clock at the molecular level? How does light reset the biological clock? How is the clock able to keep time in the absence of environmental cues?

      The symposium's speakers will review the present state of knowledge and the latest contribution to the field.

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Krystyna Skwarlo-Sonta & Elzbieta Turkowska (University of Warsaw, Poland) — Cross-talk between the pineal circadian oscillator, melatonin and inflammation in the chicken exposed to the different photoperiodic conditions.

Weronika Rupik (University of Silesia, Poland) — The circadian system in reptilian species - what do we know?

Cristiano Bertolucci (University of Ferrara, Italy) — Biological clock evolution in the darkness: the cavefish model.

Jose Fernando Lopez-Olmeda (University of Murcia, Spain) — Non-photic entrainment in fish.

Agnieszka Kleszczyńska (Institute of Oceanology Polish Academy of Sciences, Poland) — Timezyme, arylalkylamine N-acetyltransferase: activity and coding genes expression in the three-spined stickleback.

Leonardo V M de Assis (University of Sao Paulo, Brazil) — Ectotherm and endotherm peripheral clocks: a machinery for light and temperature reception based on opsins and TRP channels?          


Theme: Energetics and temperature


14. Avian Flight: Energetics, Biomechanics, Ecology and Evolution- this symposium is CANCELLED


15. Temperature, Metabolism and Cardiorespiratory Function in Tetrapods - this symposium is cancelled


16. The Evolution of Endothermy


Barry Lovegrove, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

Roberto Nespolo, Universidad Austral de Chile, Chile

Paweł Koteja, Jagiellonian University, Poland


      Our understanding of the evolution of mammals reached new levels with the publication of the colossal phenomic and genomic phylogenetic-reconstruction study of the mammals (O'Leary et al., 2013). Indeed, we are now faced with the exciting challenge of trying to explain how character evolution occurred with such stunning rapidity in mammals within several hundred thousand years of the extinction of the dinosaurs. The variety of new traits was fast; increases in body size, body temperature, metabolic rate, thermoregulatory capacity, seasonal heterothermy, cellulose digestion efficiency, as well as flight and cursoriality. These traits were, and indeed still are, expensive physiological innovations that needed to be financed from an environment undergoing severe global cooling. Their evolution was intricately associated with the evolution of elevated levels of regulated metabolism, that is, endothermy. Physiologically similar strategy of elevated level of metabolism evolved also in birds, and mechanisms of endothermic thermoregulation evolved also several other groups of animals. An intriguing question is to what extent the evolutionary factors triggering evolution of endothermy were similar in those parallel paths.

      This symposium endeavours to synthesize the models, hypotheses and procedures that have been employed to understand the evolution of endothermy in mammals and other phylogenetic groups. It will explore the macro- and micro-physiological approaches employed to undersdtand the fitness benefits of endothermy in the context of the prevailing explanatory models of endothermy.

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Roberto Nespolo (Universidad Austral de Chile, Chile) — Testing the aerobic capacity model using quantitative genetics in present-day species.

Julia Wyszkowska & Pawel Koteja (Jagiellonian University, Poland) — Relationship between selection for high aerobic metabolism and reproductive traits in bank voles Myodes glareolus.

Danielle Levesque (University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa) — Basoendothermy: Schrëwdinger's legacy.

Menno Gerkema (University of Groningen, The Netherlands) — Nocturnalism in mammals and the evolution of endothermy.

Andrew Clarke (British Antarctic Survey, UK) — Hotter really is better: body temperature and the evolution of endothermy.

Barry Lovegrove (University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa) — The Cenozoic endotherm pulses: the macrophysiology of mammalian endothermy.

Roger Seymour (The University of Adelaide, Australia) — The antiquity of endothermy in archosaurs and the metabolic consequences of abandoning endothermy in the crocodilian lineage.


17. Interspecific Scaling of Metabolic Rate: Time for Synthesis?


Jan Kozlowski, Jagiellonian University, Poland

Marek Konarzewski, University in Bialystok, Poland


      Discussions on the interspecific mass-scaling of metabolic rate, so fiery in the previous decade, slowly fade. Empirical data has shown that the matter is complex, and no a universal scaling exists. None of simplistic explanations are fully satisfactory, and many of them have only partial empirical support. Therefore, a decrease of mass-specific metabolic rates with body size calls for explanation. It is time to take a wider perspective and consider what can be learnt about interspecific scaling of metabolic rate from specific models, such as Metabolic Theory of Ecology, DEB model, cellular model, allometric cascade model, life history evolution model, etc.

      During the symposium we will discuss specific predictions and explanations, considering that the same outcome might have different causes. We will therefore not only aim at reviewing the state of the art of the research on scaling of metabolic rate, but will also attempt to formulate a research program leading to the resolution of this century-old puzzle.

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Douglas Glazier (Juniata College, USA) — Ecological mechanisms affecting the body-mass scaling of metabolic rate: toward a synthesis.

Bas Kooijman (Vrije Universiteit, The Netherlands) — The scaling of metabolism in the perspective of DEB theory.

Jan Kozłowski (Jagiellonian University, Poland) — Metabolic scaling from ecophysiological and life-history perspective.

Andrew Clarke (British Antarctic Survey, NERC, UK) — What is the role of temperature in the scaling of metabolic rate?

Roger Seymour (University of Adelaide, Australia)Scaling of activity metabolic rate in endothermic mammals, birds and dinosaurs.

Charles-A Darveau (University of Ottawa, Canada) — Allometric scaling of active metabolic rate: biomechanical causes and cellular consequences in flying insects.


18. From Molecular Background to Phenotypic Variation in Metabolic Rate


Paweł Brzęk, University of Białystok, Poland

Aneta Książek, University of Białystok, Poland

Paulina Szafrańska, Mammal Research Institute PAS, Poland


      Individual animals differ in their rate of metabolism (basal, maximum etc.), and such variation has profound ecological and evolutionary consequences. However, mechanisms underlying variation in the metabolic rate measured at the level of the whole organism are still little known. Some variation in the whole-body metabolic rate reflects differences in the relative size of internal organs but the remaining part must be attributed to the variation in organ mass-specific energy expenditure, i.e. to the variation that occurs at molecular level. The aim of the planned symposium is to present studies that investigate the link between phenotypic variation in metabolic rate (i.e. measured at the level of the whole organism) and biochemical parameters measured at the molecular level. Such parameters can include cell size, size and structure of cell components (e.g. mitochondria), composition of cell membranes, DNA content, activity of  mTOR protein etc. We also like to include studies that deal with genetic and genomic architecture of variation in metabolic rate. Studies that focus on intra-specific variation in metabolic rate (i.e. a substrate of natural selection) are preferred but those dealing with inter-specific variation are also welcomed.

      We hope that our symposium will summarize the present knowledge about molecular background of variation in molecular rate, and integrate evolutionary physiologists and molecular biologists (in particular, we would be happy to include also researchers investigating molecular background of variation in metabolic rate in humans).

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Agnieszka Dobrzyń (Nencki Institute of Experimental Biology, Poland) — Lipid signaling in the control of metabolic homeostasis.

Sebastian Maciak (Virginia Tech, USA; University of Białystok, Poland)  — The influence of cell size on the variation in metabolic rate.

Paweł Koteja (Jagiellonian University, Poland) — Molecular-level response to selection in a mammalian model of behavioural and physiological adaptation.

Teresa Valencak (University of Veterinary Medicine, Austria) — Lactation-induced changes in mitochondrial metabolism and fatty acid composition.

Karine Salin (University of Glasgow, UK) — Tissue-specific differences in mitochondrial function underlie inter-individual variation in metabolic rate.

Jan Nedergaard (University of Stockholm, Sweden) — Uncoupling protein(s) and uncoupling as determinants of metabolic rates.

Dehua Wang (Chinese Academy of Science, China) — Environmental metabolomics reveal geographic variation in aerobic metabolism and metabolic substrates in Mongolian gerbils (Meriones unguiculatus).

Thorsten Burmester (University of Hamburg, Germany) — A comparative transcriptome approach to the hypoxia tolerance of the brain of the hooded seal (Cystophora cristata).               


19. From Molecular Machines to Performance and Life History of Ectotherms: Temperature, Oxygen, Cell and Body Size

Organizers (patronage of the Journal of Thermal Biology):

Marcin Czarnoleski, Jagiellonian University, Poland

Roberto Nespolo, Universidad Austral de Chile, Chile


      Ectotherms occupy habitats that vary greatly through space and time with respect to environmental conditions. Environmental conditions such as temperature, the amount and quality of food, oxygen supply and life style decide about a balance between demands and supply of resources, and ectotherms evolved many physiological traits in response to this balance. Ambient temperatures impact directly the thermodynamic state of molecular machines in cells, physical state of organelles and diffusion processes, which together with the external supply of oxygen and food shapes the performance of cellular machinery and ultimately whole-organism performance. Yet, following Darwinian theory of evolution, it is not the physiological performance that should be maximized by natural selection, but the expected number of offspring produced through lifetime. This raises an important and still unanswered question about links between the evolution of physiological and life history traits.

      This symposium aims at integrating perspectives of molecular, cellular and physiological biologists with evolutionary ecologists to better understand the origin of phenomena observed at a phenotypic and ecological scales, especially dependence of body size and cell size on environmental conditions. For example, many cold ectotherms grow slowly and mature later at larger body size - the plastic response often called temperature-size rule. Under hypoxia, ectotherms usually develop or evolve smaller body size, and thermal tolerance of some ectotherms decreases in hypoxia. What is more, recent evidence suggests that cellular architecture of ectotherm's body undergoes plastic and genetic changes in response to external environment – e.g. the cell size of some ectotherms tends to decrease in warm and hypoxic conditions. At a geographic scale, we observe latitudinal and altitudinal clines in body size and cell size. The clines in body size often follow Bergmann's rule (large size at higher latitudes or altitudes). Despite the commonly acknowledged role of thermal conditions in the origin of these phenomena, the symposium will provide a room for discussion of a potential role of other factors that change in concert with thermal conditions or latitude, especially oxygen supplies, pressure of mortality factors such as predation and parasitism, season length.

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Hans Otto Pörtner (Alfred Wegener Institute, Germany) — Oxygen and capacity limited thermal tolerance: connecting to ecology and evolution.

Marcin Czarnoleski (Jagiellonian University, Poland) — Physiological performance and life history of ectotherms – a cell size perspective.

Roberto Nespolo (Universidad Austral de Chile, Chile) — Energy expenditure and thermal adaptation in a terrestrial ectotherm: natural selection and reciprocal transplants.

Vincent Careau (Deakin University, Australia) — Thermal reaction norms of metabolic rates, performance, and behavior: plasticity integration or modularity?

Luis Castañeda (Institute of Ecology and Biodiversity, Chile) — High temperature tolerance in Drosophila subobscura: geographic variation, phenotypic plasticity and global warming.

Wilco Verberk (Radboud University Nijmegen, The Netherlands) — Struggling to balance oxygen uptake and consumption when breathing under water: implications for thermal tolerance and growth.

Juan Diego Gaitan Espitia (CSIRO, Australia) — Local thermal adaptation or countergradient variation across geographic ranges: Is there a latitudinal compensation in ectotherms?    

Edwin Price (University of North Texas, United States) — Mitochondrial function and membrane composition during temperature acclimation in alligators.         


20. Phenotypic Flexibility of Energetics in a Seasonal World

Symposium organizers (sponsored by the Division of Comparative Physiology and Biochemistry of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology):

Michał S. Wojciechowski, Nicolaus Copernicus University, Poland

Małgorzata Jefimow, Nicolaus Copernicus University, Poland


     Living in a seasonally changing environment requires animals to periodically and reversibly adjust their behaviour, morphology and/or physiology. These adjustments include body mass, organ size, temperature regulation (homeo- or heterothermy), capacity for heat production or dissipation, etc., all acting in concert to assure optimal adjustment to the changing environment. Yet, intra-seasonal changes of the environmental conditions, such as inclement weather or climatic anomalies may require additional phenotypic modifications. These may be achieved by flexible changes within the seasonally specific reaction norms. Although the phenomenon of seasonal changes in energetics, thermoregulation or morphology was extensively studied in the past, the question whether phenotypic flexibility changes seasonally remains unaddressed.

      The aim of this symposium is to shed light on the problem of seasonal changes in phenotypic flexibility. We propose to try and answer the following questions: do reaction norms for phenotypic flexibility of energetics change seasonally?  What are the limits for seasonal changes of the phenotypic flexibility? Is phenotypic flexibility repeatable between seasons? Is there a mechanism which controls seasonal, flexible changes in energy metabolism?

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Jan S. Boratyński (Nicolaus Copernicus University, Poland) — Flexibility of basal metabolic rate in response to short-term thermal acclimations and its within- and between-seasonal repeatability in Siberian hamster.

Andrew E McKechnie (University of Pretoria, RSA) — Intraspecific variation in the thermal physiology of a southern African passerine bird.

Daniel Naya (Universidad de la República, Uruguay) — The effect of seasonal variation in climate on phenotypic flexibility: an assessment of the climatic variability hypothesis in different biological systems.

David L. Swanson (University of South Dakota, USA) — Mechanistic underpinnings of seasonal metabolic flexibility in birds.

Michał S. Wojciechowski (Nicolaus Copernicus University, Poland) — Seasonal changes of the phenotypic flexibility of energetics in small mammals and a putative mechanism of its control.

François Vézina (Université du Québec à Rimouski, Canada) — Testing the uncoupling of physiological maintenance costs and maximal thermogenic capacity in birds facing different thermal regimes.

Magali Petit (Université du Québec à Rimouski, Canada) — Increasing maximal metabolic rate improves intra-winter survival in small endotherms.

Nina I. Becker (University Giessen, Germany) — Repeatability of resting metabolic rate in Myotis daubentonii.  

Emily Cornelius (University of Wisconsin-Madison, United States) — Immune function and physiology of a wild bird faced with food unpredictability.            

Agata Rozik (Jagiellonian University, Poland) — Changes in blood parameters in response to short intense exercise in zebra finches. 


21. Seasonal Control of Mammalian Energy Balance

Organizers (DZG):

Annika Herwig, University of Hamburg, Germany

Martin Jastroch, German Research Center for Environmental Health, Germany


      Mammals have evolved complex strategies to cope with energetic bottlenecks that come along with seasons.  In contrast to ectotherms they have high body temperatures and metabolic rates that require high energy demands. There is a complex crosstalk between the brain and peripheral tissues to precisely adjust energy homeostasis, body weight and body temperature in response to environmental and physiological challenge. Some species have developed strategies such as torpor and hibernation to save energy in an inactive state, whereas in the active state, increased thermogenesis maintains high body temperatures.  The hypothalamus appears to be the major control center for the coordination of energy metabolism while brown adipose tissue executes adaptive changes in energy expenditure. Mammals coping with seasonal changes in food availability and ambient temperature represent excellent model organisms to study energy metabolism in respect to dynamic regulation of central control and peripheral adaptations. Physiological, biochemical and molecular studies are pivotal to understand the mechanisms of central-nervous and peripheral adjustments.

      This symposium focuses on recent advances in the understanding of how the hypothalamus controls seasonal changes in energy balance and how energy metabolism is adjusted in peripheral tissues such as brown adipose tissue. Beyond the understanding of seasonal control, this research also uncovers general mechanisms of mammalian energy homeostasis that will benefit translational efforts to combat emerging metabolic disorders such as obesity and diabetes.

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Perry Barrett (University of Aberdeen, UK) — The Somatostatin agonist pasireotide reveals a pivotal role for the pituitary in seasonal body weight change and energy metabolism.

Sylvain Giroud (Research Institute of Wildlife Ecology, Austria) — Energetics of torpor and hibernation: mechanisms and beyond.

Fritz Geiser (University of New England, Australia) — Photoperiod, season, torpor and fat.

Gerhard Heldmaier (Phillips-University of Marburg, Germany) — Hibernation and torpor - control and plasticity of metabolic depression in mammals.

James Turner (University Hamburg, Germany) — The metabolic response to season of Eurasian red squirrels (Sciurus vulgaris) in semi-urban habitat.

Abdelouafi Benmouloud (USTHB Algiers, Algeria) — Influence of gonadal hormones on adrenocortical function in the sand rat Psammomys obesus.            

Lida Marcela Franco Pérez (Universidad de Ibague, Colombia) — Seasonal regulation of physiological, biochemical and hormonal parameters in a Neotropical marsupial, Dromiciops gliroides.               

Bianca Wist (Hamburg University, Germany) — Energy budgets of Lepilemur leucopus: Physiological adaptation to extreme seasonality.           


Theme: Stress physiology


22. Cellular Stress Tolerance, Longevity, and Nutrition

Organizers (DZG):

Rüdiger J. Paul, University of Münster, Germany

Thomas Roeder, University of Kiel, Germany


     Cellular stress tolerance, aging, and diet are strongly interlinked. These connections have to do with an evolved strategy to improve stress tolerance (and thus also life expectancy) for survival under unfavorable conditions (food shortage, stressful environments) until such time as environmental conditions are good enough again for growth and reproduction. Associated processes are based on specific (stress) signaling pathways, which affect cytoplasmic mechanisms as well as gene expressions to promote stress tolerance by activating and synthesizing, for instance, molecular chaperones or components of antioxidant/redox buffers. Essential signaling pathways include in animals the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK), insulin/IGF-like (IIS), and target of rapamycin (TOR) signaling pathways, which process stress signals, affect stress tolerance mechanisms and control processes for growth and reproduction. Two transcription factors, FoxO/DAF-16 and Nrf2/SKN-1, are of outmost importance for the regulation of antioxidant and anti-stress genes.

      The purpose of the symposium "cellular stress tolerance, longevity, and nutrition" is to discuss underlying principles of these interlinked topics in a comparative manner.

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Ronald P. Kühnlein (Max-Planck-Institut für Biophysikalische Chemie, Göttingen, Germany) — Role of Adipokinetic hormone in the stress response of Drosophila melanogaster.

Doris Abele (Alfred-Wegener-Institut, Bremerhaven , Germany) — Age-dependent response to environmental change in the long-lived Antarctic clam Laternula elliptica: a bivalve model of cellular aging.

Ralph Menzel (Humboldt-Universität, Germany) — Endogenous functions of cytochromes P450 and stress response in the nematode C. elegans.

Sarah A. Winter (University of Münster, Germany) — The variable roles of PMK-1/SKN-1 and DAF-2/DAF-16 signaling in Caenorhabditis elegans in protecting against heat and heavy metal stress.

Nadine Hoffschroeer (University of Münster, Germany) — The heat shock protein 90 (HSP90) stress response of the microcrustacean Daphnia pulex.

Oksana Stoliar (Ternopil National Pedagogical University, Ukraine) — Transplanted to the cooling pond of power plant mussels as a model organisms for the study of climate changing.

Vishwajit Chowdhury (Kyushu University, Japan) — Acute heat-stress induces diencephalic neuropeptide Y mRNA expression and alters brain concentrations of free amino acids in chicks.   

Bojan Hamer (Ruder Boskovic Institute, Croatia) — Iron Homeostasis in Mediterranean mussel Mytilus galloprovincialis (Lamarck, 1819).   


23. Links between Oxidative Stress and Life Histories


Neil B. Metcalfe, University of Glasgow, UK

Jan R.E. Taylor, University of Białystok, Poland


      Oxidative stress arises when there is an imbalance between the production of highly reactive molecules (such as Reactive Oxygen Species, ROS, principally produced by the mitochondria during respiration) and the capacity of the organism to neutralise them through its antioxidant system; this imbalance can lead to the accumulation of oxidative damage to biomolecules, which can lead to cellular senescence and potentially (if unchecked) to deterioration of the organism. It has therefore been hypothesised that oxidative stress may play a role in shaping the life histories of animals: the optimal temporal pattern of investment in growth, reproduction and somatic maintenance (including antioxidant defences) will involve complex trade-offs that may be mediated by the impact of ROS on cellular function. As a corollary, it has often been assumed that physiologically-demanding activities such as growth or reproduction should generate more ROS and hence oxidative damage, but evidence for this has been equivocal, stimulating much recent debate.

      This symposium aims to stimulate further discussion of the issues surrounding this topic. For instance, is it true that the ‘cost of reproduction' includes an increase in oxidative damage (and if so, is that damage universal or are only particular tissues/types of molecule affected)? What are the best approaches to studying this topic (in terms of experimental systems and measured variables)? Can cross-species comparisons reveal alternative approaches to combatting oxidative stress? Does the evidence so far suggest that (the risk of) oxidative stress plays any role in affecting resource allocation patterns in animals? And what do we still need to do to provide a conclusive test of this hypothesis?

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Jon D. Blount (University of Exter, UK) — Oxidatixe shielding and the cost of reproduction.

Caroline Isaksson (Lund University, Sweden) — Oxidative stress and life-history trade-offs: Is it evolutionary stable to have single physiological currencies?

Benjamin Rey (Université de Lyon, France) — To deal or not to deal with oxidative stress: a key component for the coexistence of competing species?

Jan Taylor & Łukasz Ołdakowski (University of Białystok, Poland) — Reproduction is not costly in terms of oxidative stress.

Antoine Stier (University of Angers, France) — Thermogenesis, Fasting and Oxidative Stress: new insights from model and non-model animals.

Jason Treberg (University of Manitoba, Canada) — The interacting consequences of ATP turnover, bioenergetics and mitochondrial ROS metabolism: Should increasing energy demand lead to oxidative stress due to increased mitochondrial ROS production?

Wendy Hood (Auburn University, USA) — Mitochondrial function and life history variation in the house mouse.

Anna Ziomkiewicz (Polish Academy of Sciences, Unit of Anthropology in Wroclaw, Poland) — Evidence for cost of reproduction in humans: women with high lifetime reproductive effort have increased level of oxidative stress in postmenopausal period.       


24. Role of Free Radicals in the Survival Machinery of Animals that Endure the Hardships of the Environment

Organizers (SASCBP):

Marcelo Hermes-Lima, University of Brasilia, Brazil


      For more than 20 years researchers have been looking at the relevance of free radicals and antioxidants in life maintenance during processes of metabolic depression, especially in those related to hibernation and hypoxia tolerance. Our ideas, evolved from a time when free radicals and reactive oxygen species (ROS) were considered "bad" (and therefore antioxidants were "good"), to a time when ROS are considered essential for life. Moreover, our old view that ROS formation would be reduced under hypoxia (a view of the 1990s) evolved to an understanding that is actually the opposite, at least in mammalian cells. Such increased ROS formation may also be a key factor in the regulation of metabolic processes during hypoxia exposure, and perhaps during estivation and hibernation.

      The goal of this symposium is to address the role of free radicals and antioxidants as key factors in the survival strategy of animals that endure (and adapted) to the hardships of the environment, such as extreme cold, heat, low oxygenation, and lack of food and/or water. We intend to focus on hibernation, hypoxia tolerance and aging.

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Kenneth Storey (Carleton University, Canada) — Decoding the molecular machinery controlling metabolic rate depression.

Marcelo Hermes-Lima (University of Brasilia, Brazil) — Revisiting the concept of "preparation for oxidative stress" in hypoxia and post-hypoxic stress.

Doris Abele (Alfred Wegener Institute, Germany) — Understanding how marine invertebrates handle the redox stress of hypoxia and reoxygenation.

Eduardo de Almeida (UNESP, Brazil) — Temperature and hypoxia influence on oxidative stress markers of aquatic animals exposed to environmental pollutants.

Alexis F. Welker (University of Brasilia, Brazil) — Role of catalase in the redox control of hypoxic stress in tilapia and land gastropods.

Daniel C. Moreira (University of Brasilia, Brazil) — Redox balance, endogenous antioxidants and metabolic adjustments during tropical diapause in the sunflower caterpillar Chlosyne lacinia (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae).

Georgina A. Rivera-Ingraham (Alfred Wegener Institute, Germany) — Determination of free radical formation under hypoxic stress in aquatic invertebrates.

Bettina Zeis (University of Münster  Germany) — Temperature affects oxidative stress, resulting damage and its defense in Daphnia.

Volodymyr Lushchak (Vasyl Stefanyk Precarpathian National University, Ukraine) — Adaptive Response to Oxidative Stress: from Bacteria to Human.           


25. Climate Change and Associated Challenges: How Fish Will Cope

Organizers (SASCBP):

Adalberto Luis Val, INPA, Manaus, Brazil

Vera Almeida-Val, INPA, Manaus, Brazil


      Climate changes and associated challenges as warming waters, changing freshwater hydrology, expansion of hypoxic and anoxic zones, are setting new scenarios for fish across the globe. Biochemical, physiological and behavioral adjustments are determinant how fish will cope with these new scenarios. Extreme natural environmental challenges are already found in many places, including many tropical pristine areas, and are imposing risks to fish diversity.

      This symposium will feature papers describing fish responses to perturbations caused by climate changes and associated challenges in their natural environment or under experimental conditions forecasting future environments. Modern DNA analysis of these responses, describing differentially responsive genes, epigenetic changes and newly discovered transposons will be presented as well as other modern comparative physiology data.

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Adalberto Luis Val (Dal Val) (INPA, Brazil) — The lips of tambaqui: adaptation or limitation under climate change scenarios.

Vera Maria F. de Almeida e Val (INPA, Brazil) — Long-term overnight hypoxia is compensated for by similar growth rates in tambaqui (Colossoma macropomum, Cuvier 1818).

Gillian Renshaw (Griffith University, Australia) — Mitochondrial plasticity as a determinant of surviving climate change.

Sonya Auer (University of Glasgow, UK) — Greater flexibility in metabolic rate confers a growth advantage under changing food availability.

Gisela Lanning (Alfred -Wegener-Institut, Germany) — Thermal sensitivity of cell metabolism of different Antarctic fish species mirrors organism temperature tolerance.

Roberta  Klein (Universidade Federal do Rio Grande, Brazil) — Effects of increasing temperature on the activity of key metabolic enzymes in liver of the Antarctic fish Notothenia coriiceps.             

Bernd Pelster (University of Innsbruck, Austria) — Ionoregulation in two Amazonian erythrinid teleosts: air-breathing compromises branchial ion uptake.              


26. The Evolution of Innate and Acquired Immunity


Magdalena Chadzińska, Jagiellonian University, Poland


      The immune system is remarkably complex, both in terms of the diversity of receptors responsible for pathogen recognition and the cell types charged with immune surveillance and defense. Different organisms have developed diverse strategies to combat pathogens. For example, invertebrate immunity is mainly based on the phagocyte system equipped with a wide repertoire of anti-viral, anti-fungal and bactericidal molecules. In contrast, the resistance of vertebrate animals is additionally armed with acquired immunity. Interestingly, recent achievements of evolutionary immunobiology indicate that the acquired immunity (connected with clonal proliferation of antigen-specific immune cells leading to the formation of memory cells) emerged independently at least three times during the course of evolution of the animal kingdom. In jawed vertebrates it is based on lymphocytes, each of them with a particular set of antigen receptors, the vast diversity of which is dependent on somatic DNA rearrangement of v(d)j genes from the immunoglobulin superfamily (IgSF), while in jawless vertebrates  a vast diversity of VLR lymphocyte receptors evolved by somatic DNA rearrangement of leucine-rich repeats, unrelated to IgSF. Quite recently it was shown that also insects are able to survive a lethal dose of pathogen following injection  of a sublethal dose of the same pathogen, while a non-related pathogen was not protective. The variability of their IgSF-type like receptors is created by alternative splicing.

      During this symposium we aim to present the phylogeny of immune defense strategies with representative examples of  invertebrates (insects, earthworms), ectothermic vertebrates (fish) as well as endothermic birds and mammals. Moreover, the mutual communication of the immune system with other systems e.g. the neuroendocrine system, will be presented. We aim to include  molecular mechanisms of the signaling and regulation pathways of the immune response.

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Iwona Wojda (Maria Curie-Skłodowska University, Poland) — Galleria mellonella as an insect model to study host-pathogen interactions.

Lidy van Kemenade (Wageningen University, The Netherlands) — Immune and neuroendocrine regulation of inflammation in teleost fish.

Elżbieta Kołaczkowska (Jagiellonian University, Poland) — Extracellular traps as a conservative mechanism of phagocyte defense towards pathogens.

Magdalena Markowska (Warsaw University, Poland) — Does the local inflammation can be still defined as local?

Wiesław Babik (Jagiellonian University, Poland) — Constraint and adaptation in salamander immune genes.

Ewa Szwejser (Jagiellonian University, Poland) —  Expression of nuclear and membrane estrogen receptors in/on lymphoid organs and leukocytes in common carp: indications for neuroendocrine-immune interaction via estrogens.


Theme: Miscellaneous


27. Open session 2 (after conversion of a former symposium)

Martin Lindley, Loughborough University, UK

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Paweł Brzęk (University of Bialystok, Poland) — Effect of reduced food intake on spontaneous locomotor activity in laboratory mice selected for high and low level of basal metabolic rate (BMR).   

Viviana Cadena (University of Melbourne, Australia) — Phenotypic plasticity and local adaptation of colour contribute to bearded dragons' ability to camouflage, a function which is prioritised over thermoregulation in the wild.

Jessica Cornils (University of Veterinary Medicine, Austria) — Relax, there will be better times: sexual hormones in a small arboreal hibernator.          

Cyril Degletagne (Alfred Wegener Institute, Germany) — Occurrence of aberrant mitochondrial DNA in long-lived Arctica islandica: possible impact on fitness and longevity.     

Martin Lindley (Loughborough University, United Kingdom) — The physiology and biochemistry of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids and their bioactive derivatives.        

Jowita Niedojadlo (Jagiellonian Univesity, Poland) — Mean corpuscular volume is not correlated to erythrocyte size and does not predict metabolic rate.    

Julia Nowack (University of New England, Australia) — Staying put: Torpor use during a severe storm.

Stine Slotsbo (Aarhus University, Denmark) — Reversibility of developmental acclimation in Drosophila melanogaster.             

Alex J Wadley (University of Worcester, United Kingdom) — The potential of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids to suppress post-exercise oxidative stress and inflammation.    


28. Actin and Actin Binding Proteins: A Dynamic Framework in Different Organisms from Bacteria to Human

Organizers (JSCPB):

Hitoshi Tatsumi, Nagoya University, Japan

Kimihide Hayakawa, Nagoya University, Japan

Shoichiro Ono, Emory University, USA

Pekka Lappalainen, University of Helsinki, Finland


      For cells to function properly, they have to be correctly shaped. Cells can regulate dynamic changes of their shape and migrate in a directed manner. Eukaryotic cells have developed a remarkable filamentous system, the cytoskeleton, to control their shape and movement. Actin is one of the major cytoskeletal proteins and controlled by actin-binding proteins. The actin cytoskeleton is found in many different cell types in eukaryotes, and, recently, actin-like proteins have been found in bacteria. Actin filaments are formed from actin monomers, and their assembly and disassembly are regulated by many actin-binding proteins with different functions.  The basic structure of the actin filament is a helix of two polymer strands, which is highly conserved in eukaryotic cells. On the other hand, a wide variety of functions of actin filaments are presumably mediated by a number of different actin-binding proteins, which have been evolved to fulfill diverse functions of the actin cytoskeleton.

      Papers in this symposium illustrate the recent progresses in the study of the functions of actin (and actin-like) filaments and actin-binding proteins (e.g., cofilin and AIP1) in different organisms, and discuss comparatively the commonness and uniqueness of their properties.

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Hitoshi Tatsumi (Nagoya University, Japan) — Single molecule imaging and analysis of cooperative binding of cofilin to actin filaments.

Kimihide Hayakawa (Nagoya University, Japan) — Mechano-sensing by actin filament.

Shoichiro Ono (Emory University, USA) — Regulation of actin filament turnover by cyclase-associated protein and ADF/cofilin.

Pekka Lappalainen (University of Helsinki, Finland)  — Generation of contractile stress fibers depends on mechanosensitive actin filament assembly and disassembly.


29. Statistical Approaches to Physiological Data Processing

Symposium organizers:

Teresa G. Valencak, University of Veterinary Medicine, Austria

John R. Speakman, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China & University of Aberdeen, UK


      It has been suggested a decade ago that comparative studies had become confused by not taking the pervasive influence of body weight into account when correlating certain physiological traits. Similarly, it has been argued that phylogeny needs to be included and that datasets should contain data from as many as possible species. While there are statistical packages available and out there and ready to use, there are opponents to these approaches arguing that the statistical approaches might be overly conservative. A question put forward on "Research Gate" started a lively discussion on this topic and thus we propose to hold a symposium on statistical approaches to physiological data processing bringing together experts who have dealt with large and complicated datasets.

      The talks will cover many different aspects from practical applications regarding statistical software over datasets in lifespan and aging over to aspects such as appropriate sample size and sampling methods. Also, we aim to include contributions on allometry and its role in state of art physiology and a presentation of models on heat loss over surfaces.

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Daniel Promislow (University of Washington, USA) — Comparative metabolomics: mapping physiology to phylogeny.

Brian McNab (University of Florida, USA) — An analysis of variation of continuous, quantitative characters in a phylogenetic, behavioral,  and environmental context.

Douglas S. Glazier (Juniata College, USA)  — Diverse body-size scaling of the pace of life complicates body-size adjusted comparisons of the rates of metabolism and other biological processes.

Bernard Wone (University of Nevada, Reno, USA) — Covariates, random effects, false discovery rates and beyond.


30. Open Session: Ideas and Discoveries in Comparative Physiology and Biochemistry

Symposium organizers:

Berry Pinshow, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Israel

Harvey Lillywhite, University of Florida, USA


     The program of open session will comprise talks and posters on all aspects of comparative physiology and biochemistry not considered in the specific symposia, but presenting novel ideas and discoveries. Presentations for this session will be selected from submitted abstracts. If accepted, the applicants will be invited to give either an oral presentation or a poster, based on the originality of ideas and the quality of research. We particularly encourage presentations by students and early career scientists.

NOTE: Speakers will be selected from submitted abstracts

Confirmed speakers and tentative titles/topics:

Clare Stawski (University of New England, Australia) — Physiological and behavioural strategies for survival of fire by small mammals.

Yunfang Gao (Northwest University, China) — Constant protein degradation protects skeletal muscles from disuse atrophy in hibernating Daurian ground squirrels.

Eran Gefen (University of Haifa-Oranim, Israel) — Energy metabolism and hydration state affect discontinuous gas exchange cycle properties in desert locusts under a combined dehydration/starvation stress.           

Martin Jastroch (Institute for Diabetes and Obesity, Germany) — Evolution of thermogenic adipose tissue in mammals.

Harv Lillywhite (University of Florida, United States) — Is cooling and freezing an appropriate euthanasia for ectothermic vertebrates?            

Manette Marais (University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa) — Febrile birds die at high ambient temperatures because the magnitude of the febrile response is unregulated.            

Berry Pinshow (Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Israel) — Animal burrow ventilation - new ideas about ancient phenomena.        


Local Organizing Committee


Natalia Derus



Paweł Koteja


Paulina Kramarz

Marek Konarzewski

Public relations

Marcin Czarnołęski

Hajnalka Szentgyörgyi

Edyta Sadowska


Marian Lewandowski

Meeting place

Elżbieta Jagłowska