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Title:Neurogenomic dynamics following social interactions in male threespined sticklebacks
Author(s):Bukhari, Syed Abbas
Director of Research:Bell, Alison M
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Bell, Alison M
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Stubbs, Lisa; Sinha, Saurabh; Zhao, Dave
Department / Program:Graduate College Programs
Discipline:Informatics
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Degree:Ph.D.
Genre:Dissertation
Subject(s):Neurogenomics
Sticklebacks
Social behavior
Aggression, Paternal care
Abstract:Social interactions provoke changes in brain and behavior, however molecular changes associated with social interactions remain obscure. This thesis explored the neurogenomic responses to aggressive and affiliative social interactions in male threespined sticklebacks (Gasterosteus aculeatus), a small fish famous for their rich behavioral repertoire. In chapter one I provided the detailed overview of the research included in this dissertation. The second chapter tested the hypothesis that there are conserved transcriptional responses to social interactions in sticklebacks and fruit fly. There was stronger evidence for this hypothesis for one type of social behavior – a territorial challenge – than for a social interaction at the opposite end of the continuum: a courtship opportunity. In chapter three and chapter four I tracked the temporal dynamics of neurogenomic plasticity in male sticklebacks. I focused on two brains regions (diencephalon and telencephalon), which contain several nuclei of the social decision-making network. The third chapter focused on the transcriptomic and epigenomic responses to a territorial challenge. Results showed that the genome dynamically responds to a territorial challenge, with waves of transcription associated with different functions, e.g. hormone activity and immune response. The fourth chapter focused on males’ transition to fatherhood, and compared and contrasted the neurogenomics of paternal care with the neurogenomics of the response to a territorial challenge. Males experienced dramatic neurogenomic shifts while they were providing paternal care. Genes related to hormones that change in mammalian mothers during pregnancy and maternal care, were differentially expressed in stickleback fathers. Gene regulatory analysis suggested that shared regulators were responsive to both a territorial challenge and paternal care and these were regulated differently along with their targets. This analysis offers a glimpse into how genes differentially acting within the social decision-making network in the brain can generate responses to opposing social stimuli. Altogether, this thesis adds to the growing repertoire of studies examining social behavior at the molecular level and draws attention to the neurogenomic dynamics associated with behavioral plasticity.
Issue Date:2018-07-11
Type:Thesis
URI:http://hdl.handle.net/2142/101704
Rights Information:Copyright 2018 Syed Abbas Bukhari
Date Available in IDEALS:2018-09-27
Date Deposited:2018-08


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