Kate Jackson

Kate Jackson
Whitman College · Department of Biology

Doctor of Philosophy

About

43
Publications
31,068
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911
Citations
Introduction
Kate Jackson (PhD Harvard University, BSc, MSc University of Toronto) is a herpetologist interested in African herpetology (especially central Africa), the evolutionary morphology of African snakes, and snakebite in Africa.
Education
September 1995 - May 2002
Harvard University
Field of study
  • Organismic and Evolutionary Biology
September 1994 - June 1995
University of Toronto
Field of study
  • Zoology
September 1992 - May 1994
University of Toronto
Field of study
  • Zoology

Publications

Publications (43)
Article
Full-text available
The fungal pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) is implicated in global declines of amphibian populations and has been documented in African specimens originally collected as far back as the 1930s. Numerous recent surveys focusing on regional pathogen prevalence have greatly increased the number of known occurrences of Bd in African species...
Article
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We sampled amphibians and reptiles using rapid assessment techniques in primary forest and forest-savannah mosaic habitat in Lékoumou Department, Republic of Congo, near the Batéké Plateau, as part of an environmental impact assessment for a mining project. We detected 38 amphibian and 36 reptile species. Amphibian species included 38 frogs represe...
Article
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A 20-year-old man presented to a rural hospital in Bembéréké, northern Benin, after a witnessed bite from a small, dark snake to his left foot that occurred 3 hours earlier. The description of the snake was consistent with several neurotoxic elapids known to inhabit the area in addition to various species from at least 10 different genera of non-fr...
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Atractaspidines are poorly studied, fossorial snakes that are found throughout Africa and western Asia, including the Middle East. We employed concatenated gene-tree analyses and divergence dating approaches to investigate evolutionary relationships and biogeographic patterns of atractaspidines with a multi-locus data set consisting of three mitoch...
Data
Settings for high-resolution CT scans and DOI numbers for supporting files on the Morphosource website, in Microsoft Excel format. (XLSX)
Article
The African green and bush snakes of the genus Philothamnus currently comprises 21 species and three subspecies and occurs throughout sub-Saharan Africa. The genus has been the subject of previous taxonomic revisions based on traditional morphological characters and limited genetic assessment, and may not reflect their evolutionary history. Indeed,...
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Cobras are among the most widely known venomous snakes, and yet their taxonomy remains incompletely understood, particularly in Africa. Here, we use a combination of mitochondrial and nuclear gene sequences and morphological data to diagnose species limits within the African forest cobra, Naja (Boulengerina) melanoleuca. Mitochondrial DNA sequences...
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The Central African house snake Boaedon olivaceus has a large distribution from the forests of West Africa to Mabira Forest in Uganda. We sequenced two mitochondrial (cyt b and ND4) and two nuclear (c-mos and RAG1) genes from several populations of B. olivaceus in Central Africa and recovered two highly divergent lineages (Congo Basin and Albertine...
Article
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Sixty-four Monopeltis guentheri were collected in a small patch of remnant forest within the city of Brazzaville, Republic of the Congo, and were measured for morphological characters traditionally used to classify five species of Central and West African Monopeltis amphisbaenians. Based on the intraspecific variation found in our specimens, we con...
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Stiletto Snakes (genus Atractaspis) are the most poorly studied of the three clades of snakes with front-fanged venom-delivery systems. Fossorial and endemic to Africa and the Middle East, Atractaspis possess uniquely derived mobile fangs that allow them to perform a ‘side-stabbing’ method of envenomation, rather than the frontal strike of most oth...
Article
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Snake venoms are recognized here as a grossly under-explored resource in pharmacological prospecting. Discoveries in snake systematics demonstrate that former taxonomic bias in research has led to the neglect of thousands of species of potential medical use. Recent discoveries reveal an unexpectedly vast degree of variation in venom composition amo...
Article
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Ecological and phylogenetic influences on maxillary dentition in snakes. The maxillary dentition of snakes was used as a system with which to investigate the relative importance of the interacting forces of ecological selective pressures and phylogenetic constraints in determining morphology. The maxillary morphology of three groups of snakes havin...
Article
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The maxillary dentition of snakes was used as a system with which to investigate the relative importance of the interacting forces of ecological selective pressures and phylogenetic constraints indetermining morphology. The maxillary morphology of three groups of snakes having different diets, with each group comprising two distinct lineages — boid...
Article
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We report here the findings of a faunal survey of amphibians and reptiles included in an environmental impact assessment carried out in a heavily anthropogenically degraded area near the city of Pointe-Noire, Republic of Congo. Specifically, we use these results as an opportunity to investigate the effects of habitat destruction and fragmentation o...
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We quantified the effectiveness of two scale characters commonly used to identify snakes: smooth versus keeled dorsal scales and straight versus oblique dorsal scale rows. We examined 169 species of African snakes from close-up photographs of the dorsal scales. We calculated the prominence of keels (if present) along the dorsal scales and the degre...
Article
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Many advanced snakes use fangs-specialized teeth associated with a venom gland-to introduce venom into prey or attacker. Various front- and rear-fanged groups are recognized, according to whether their fangs are positioned anterior (for example cobras and vipers) or posterior (for example grass snakes) in the upper jaw. A fundamental controversy in...
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Abstract.—We report here the results of the first herpetofaunal survey of the flooded forest of the Likouala Region of theRepublic of Congo (Brazzaville). Collecting was carried out during the rainy seasons of 2005 and 2006, at two sites, one withinthe Lac Télé Community Reserve, and another just outside its borders. We compare the herpetofaunal as...
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The present study of the origin of the various types of fang represented among colubroid snakes (i.e., tubular, grooved, and ungrooved) attempts to reconcile the morphology of adult fangs with current phylogenetic hypotheses. Observations of growth series of developing tubular fangs were hypothesised to shed light on the evolutionary origin of fang...
Article
We recount here two experiments carried out which suggest the existence of the first described integumentary osmoreceptor of its kind in a vertebrate. Domed pressure receptors, present on the cranial scales of alligators have previously been demonstrated to convey the sensation of "touch" when flattened by pressure. Here we find that morphologicall...
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We present an annotated list of 20 amphibian and 4 reptile species collected along the southern edge of Nouabale-Ndoki National Park in the Republic of Congo, which comprises lowland forests that are part of the Congo River drainage basin. This study has resulted in the first definitive records of the frogs Aubria masako, Amietophrynus regularis,...
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The Common Wolf snake, Lycodon aulicus capucinus, is a species known to feed on durophagous prey such as skinks. Here we examine in detail the dentitional morphology of L. aulicus capucinus to see whether it possesses morphological specialisations for durophagy comparable to those found in other squamates. We find that L. aulicus capucinus has grea...
Article
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In this study we investigated how ophiophagous snakes are able to ingest prey snakes that equal or exceed their own length. We used X-ray video, standard video, dissection, and still X-rays to document the process of ophiophagy in kingsnakes (Lampropeltis getula) feeding on corn snakes (Elaphe guttata). Most kingsnakes readily accepted the prey sna...
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The Colubroidea represents approximately 2300 of the 2700 species of living snakes and includes all venomous taxa. Although many morphological studies of colubroid snakes have been carried over the last hundred years, the phylogenetic relationships within this group are poorly known. In this study, components of the venom-delivery system (VDS) were...
Article
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Elapids, viperids, and some other groups of colubroid snakes have tubular fangs for the conduction of venom into their prey. The literature describing the development of venom-conducting fangs provides two contradictory accounts of fang development. Some studies claim that the venom canal forms by the infolding of a deep groove along the surface of...
Article
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External morphological development between oviposition and hatching of the monocled cobra, Naja kaouthia, is described. Ten developmental stages are diagnosed according to nine features. These include fusion of the body wall musculature along the ventral midline, appearance of the endolymphatic ducts, formation of the eyelid, and the appearance of...
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Iguanognathus is a monotypic genus known from only one specimen and notable for the unusual morphology of its teeth. Here, we study the tooth morphology of Iguanognathus werneri in detail, using scanning electron microscopy. The teeth of Iguanognathus are found to be hinged. Hinged teeth in other snakes are often correlated with dietary specializat...
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The skins of crocodylids and gavialids can be distinguished from those of alligatorids by the presence of darkly pigmented pits, known as integumentary sense organs (ISOs), on the postcranial scales. The structure of ISOs, in Crocodylus porosus, was studied using light microscopy and scanning and transmission electron microscopy. The stratum corneu...
Article
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Crocodylids are better adapted than alligatorids, through a suite of morphological specializations, for life in hyperosmotic environments. The presence of such specializations even in freshwater crocodylids has been interpreted as evidence for a marine phase in crocodylid evolution, consistent with the trans-osceanic migration hypothesis of crocodi...
Article
Crocodylids are better adapted than alligatorids, through a suite of morphological specializations, for life in hyperosmotic environments. The presence of such specializations even in freshwater crocodylids has been interpreted as evidence for a marine phase in crocodylid evolution, consistent with the trans-osceanic migration hypothesis of crocodi...
Article
Full-text available
Although the front-fanged venom delivery system of the Elapidae is believed to be derived from an aglyphous or opisthoglyphous colubroid ancestor, opinion is divided as to the end of the maxilla on which the proteroglyph fang originated. This study was undertaken to determine whether the evolutionary precursor of the proteroglyph fang was (a) a gro...

Projects

Project (1)
Project
Snakebites kill or maim over 600,000 people worldwide every year in the developing world. In order to address this crisis, we have created an international non-profit foundation led by many of the world experts in snakebite medicine. The mission of the Asclepius Snakebite Foundation is to reverse the vicious cycle of tragic snakebite outcomes through a combination of innovative research, clinical medicine, and education-based public health initiatives. www.snakebitefoundation.org