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Warm frogs can beat chytrid fungus

In a research paper published in the journal Functional Ecology, CTBCC's Sasha Greenspan and co-authors investigate how heat could protect endemic frogs from the deadly amphibian chytrid fungus.

The authors conducted a laboratory experiment where some frogs were exposed to 'heat pulses' similar to those they might experience in nature, to see what impact it had on an infection with the chytrid pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis.

Remarkably, i
nfections developed more slowly in frogs exposed to daily 4-hr heat pulses of 26°C or 29°C compared to frogs in constant temperature treatments without heat pulses. Frogs that experienced heat pulses were also less likely to exceed infection intensities at which morbidity and mortality become likely. Ten of 11 (91%) frogs from the daily 29°C heat pulse treatment even cleared their infections after approximately 9 weeks.

The results of the study show great promise in helping frog species fight back against chytrid.

Read the full paper here.


Read the media release here.

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