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Facultative and obligatory thermogenesis in young birds: A cautionary note

, : Facultative and obligatory thermogenesis in young birds: A cautionary note. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology Part A Molecular and Integrative Physiology 131A(4): 733-739

A brief overview on thermogenic mechanisms in young precocial birds is given. While shivering thermogenesis is well documented in these birds, evidence for a facultative non-shivering component of heat production, comparable to that found in the brown adipose tissue of mammals, is ambiguous. One reason for this is the confusion between thermoregulatory and obligatory thermogenesis. In particular, the existence of a thermogenic reaction, even a futile one, does not by itself constitute proof of true thermoregulatory non-shivering thermogenesis. More probably, such a reaction is another obligatory component of heat production. Heat increment of feeding and motor activity are classical examples of such mechanisms. Thermogenesis arising from such mechanisms can often be adaptively used by the thermoregulatory systems in young birds, as well as in adults.


PMID: 11897184

DOI: 10.1016/s1095-6433(02)00011-9

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