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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Bacteria Rescue Frogs From Extinction

Shrinkage amphibian species that happened since 1980. Researchers from James Madison University in Virginia, United States, found a way to save the population of frogs from extinction.
A sad photograph of frogs killed by the chytrid fungus. (Picture from: http://www.anoleannals.org/)
Reid Harris, professor of biology at the university, conducted a study of bacteria found in the skin of red-backed salamander. These bacteria can prove deadly chytridiomycosis fungus, causes the death of a third of amphibian populations around the world. A total of 122 of 5700 amphibians species extinct in the last three decades.

Amphibian species mass deaths were spread across the country, from Australia to Central America and the western United States. "Cases of death caused by the chytrid fungus," he said through the official website of James Madison University.

This fungus does not directly kill the frog. When grown on the surface of amphibian skin, fungal skin covering and blocking the absorption of oxygen. "Like a fungus growing in the human lung," said Harris.

The new chytrid fungus known to exist in 1998. This fungus not previously received attention from researchers until there is mass death amphibian populations. Usually this kind of mass deaths attributed to environmental factors, such as habitat loss, global warming and acid rain. However, further research confirms that the chytrid fungus is the cause of death. These experiments are expected to acquire beneficial bacteria to fight the development of chytrid fungus. Experiments using the yeast colonies were grown in a petri dish of bacteria showed red-backed salamanders work as an antibiotic that prevents growth of mold seeds. "The fungus causes the death of frogs could be confronted with the bacteria that we found," he said.

Harris is now trying to isolate the antifungal bacteria and reproduce in the laboratory. *** [ANTON WILLIAM | KORAN TEMPO 3808]
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