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Sample records for eusocial insect molecular

  1. Eusocial insects as emerging models for behavioural epigenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Hua; Simola, Daniel F; Bonasio, Roberto; Liebig, Jürgen; Berger, Shelley L; Reinberg, Danny

    2014-10-01

    Understanding the molecular basis of how behavioural states are established, maintained and altered by environmental cues is an area of considerable and growing interest. Epigenetic processes, including methylation of DNA and post-translational modification of histones, dynamically modulate activity-dependent gene expression in neurons and can therefore have important regulatory roles in shaping behavioural responses to environmental cues. Several eusocial insect species - with their unique displays of behavioural plasticity due to age, morphology and social context - have emerged as models to investigate the genetic and epigenetic underpinnings of animal social behaviour. This Review summarizes recent studies in the epigenetics of social behaviour and offers perspectives on emerging trends and prospects for establishing genetic tools in eusocial insects.

  2. Population genomics of eusocial insects: the costs of a vertebrate-like effective population size.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romiguier, J; Lourenco, J; Gayral, P; Faivre, N; Weinert, L A; Ravel, S; Ballenghien, M; Cahais, V; Bernard, A; Loire, E; Keller, L; Galtier, N

    2014-03-01

    The evolution of reproductive division of labour and social life in social insects has lead to the emergence of several life-history traits and adaptations typical of larger organisms: social insect colonies can reach masses of several kilograms, they start reproducing only when they are several years old, and can live for decades. These features and the monopolization of reproduction by only one or few individuals in a colony should affect molecular evolution by reducing the effective population size. We tested this prediction by analysing genome-wide patterns of coding sequence polymorphism and divergence in eusocial vs. noneusocial insects based on newly generated RNA-seq data. We report very low amounts of genetic polymorphism and an elevated ratio of nonsynonymous to synonymous changes – a marker of the effective population size – in four distinct species of eusocial insects, which were more similar to vertebrates than to solitary insects regarding molecular evolutionary processes. Moreover, the ratio of nonsynonymous to synonymous substitutions was positively correlated with the level of social complexity across ant species. These results are fully consistent with the hypothesis of a reduced effective population size and an increased genetic load in eusocial insects, indicating that the evolution of social life has important consequences at both the genomic and population levels. © 2014 The Authors. Journal of Evolutionary Biology © 2014 European Society For Evolutionary Biology.

  3. Radio tagging technology reveals extreme nest drifting behavior in a eusocial insect

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sumner, Seirian; Lucas, Eric; Barker, Jessie

    2007-01-01

    Kin-selection theory underlies our basic understanding of social evolution 1 and 2. Nest drifting in eusocial insects (where workers move between nests) presents a challenge to this paradigm, since a worker should remain as a helper on her natal colony, rather than visit other colonies to which s...

  4. Radio-tagging technology reveals extreme nest-drifting behavior in a eusocial insect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sumner, Seirian; Lucas, Eric; Barker, Jessie; Isaac, Nick

    2007-01-23

    Kin-selection theory underlies our basic understanding of social evolution [1, 2]. Nest drifting in eusocial insects (where workers move between nests) presents a challenge to this paradigm, since a worker should remain as a helper on her natal colony, rather than visit other colonies to which she is less closely related. Here we reveal nest drifting as a strategy by which workers may maximize their indirect fitness by helping on several related nests, preferring those where the marginal return from their help is greatest. By using a novel monitoring technique, radio frequency identification (RFID) tagging, we provide the first accurate estimate of drifting in a eusocial insect: 56% of females drifted in a natural population of the eusocial paper wasp Polistes canadensis, exceeding previous records of drifting in natural populations by more than 30-fold. We demonstrate that drifting cannot be explained through social parasitism, queen succession, mistakes in nest identity, or methodological bias. Instead, workers appear to gain indirect fitness benefits by helping on several related colonies in a viscous population structure. The potential importance of this strategy as a component of the kin-selected benefits for a social insect worker has previously been overlooked because of methodological difficulties in quantifying and studying drifting.

  5. Function and evolution of microRNAs in eusocial Hymenoptera

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    Eirik eSovik

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available The emergence of eusociality (true sociality in several insect lineages represents one of the most successful evolutionary adaptations in the animal kingdom in terms of species richness and global biomass. In contrast to solitary insects, eusocial insects evolved a set of unique behavioral and physiological traits such as reproductive division of labor and cooperative brood care, which likely played a major role in their ecological success. The molecular mechanisms that support the social regulation of behavior in eusocial insects, and their evolution, are mostly unknown. The recent whole-genome sequencing of several eusocial insect species set the stage for deciphering the molecular and genetic bases of eusociality, and the possible evolutionary modifications that led to it. Studies of mRNA expression patterns in the brains of diverse eusocial insect species have indicated that specific social behavioral states of individual workers and queens are often associated with particular tissue-specific transcriptional profiles. Here we discuss recent findings that highlight the role of non-coding microRNAs (miRNAs in modulating traits associated with reproductive and behavioral divisions of labor in eusocial insects. We provide bioinformatic and phylogenetic data, which suggest that some Hymenoptera-specific miRNA may have contributed to the evolution of traits important for the evolution of eusociality in this group.

  6. Social context and reproductive potential affect worker reproductive decisions in a eusocial insect.

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    Boris Yagound

    Full Text Available Context-dependent decision-making conditions individual plasticity and is an integrant part of alternative reproductive strategies. In eusocial Hymenoptera (ants, bees and wasps, the discovery of worker reproductive parasitism recently challenged the view of workers as a homogeneous collective entity and stressed the need to consider them as autonomous units capable of elaborate choices which influence their fitness returns. The reproductive decisions of individual workers thus need to be investigated and taken into account to understand the regulation of reproduction in insect societies. However, we know virtually nothing about the proximate mechanisms at the basis of worker reproductive decisions. Here, we test the hypothesis that the capacity of workers to reproduce in foreign colonies lies in their ability to react differently according to the colonial context and whether this reaction is influenced by a particular internal state. Using the bumble bee Bombus terrestris, we show that workers exhibit an extremely high reproductive plasticity which is conditioned by the social context they experience. Fertile workers reintroduced into their mother colony reverted to sterility, as expected. On the contrary, a high level of ovary activity persisted in fertile workers introduced into a foreign nest, and this despite more frequent direct contacts with the queen and the brood than control workers. Foreign workers' reproductive decisions were not affected by the resident queen, their level of fertility being similar whether or not the queen was removed from the host colony. Workers' physiological state at the time of introduction is also of crucial importance, since infertile workers failed to develop a reproductive phenotype in a foreign nest. Therefore, both internal and environmental factors appear to condition individual reproductive strategies in this species, suggesting that more complex decision-making mechanisms are involved in the regulation

  7. Genome, transcriptome and methylome sequencing of a primitively eusocial wasp reveal a greatly reduced DNA methylation system in a social insect.

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    Standage, Daniel S; Berens, Ali J; Glastad, Karl M; Severin, Andrew J; Brendel, Volker P; Toth, Amy L

    2016-04-01

    Comparative genomics of social insects has been intensely pursued in recent years with the goal of providing insights into the evolution of social behaviour and its underlying genomic and epigenomic basis. However, the comparative approach has been hampered by a paucity of data on some of the most informative social forms (e.g. incipiently and primitively social) and taxa (especially members of the wasp family Vespidae) for studying social evolution. Here, we provide a draft genome of the primitively eusocial model insect Polistes dominula, accompanied by analysis of caste-related transcriptome and methylome sequence data for adult queens and workers. Polistes dominula possesses a fairly typical hymenopteran genome, but shows very low genomewide GC content and some evidence of reduced genome size. We found numerous caste-related differences in gene expression, with evidence that both conserved and novel genes are related to caste differences. Most strikingly, these -omics data reveal a major reduction in one of the major epigenetic mechanisms that has been previously suggested to be important for caste differences in social insects: DNA methylation. Along with a conspicuous loss of a key gene associated with environmentally responsive DNA methylation (the de novo DNA methyltransferase Dnmt3), these wasps have greatly reduced genomewide methylation to almost zero. In addition to providing a valuable resource for comparative analysis of social insect evolution, our integrative -omics data for this important behavioural and evolutionary model system call into question the general importance of DNA methylation in caste differences and evolution in social insects. © 2016 The Authors. Molecular Ecology Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  8. Superorganism resilience: Eusociality and susceptibility of ecosystem service providing insects to stressors

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    Insects provide crucial ecosystem services for human food security and maintenance of biodiversity. Therefore, major declines in wild species combined with losses of managed bees have raised concern over the sustainability of their ecosystem services. Recent data suggest that honey bees appear to be...

  9. A molecular concept of caste in insect societies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sumner, Seirian; Bell, Emily; Taylor, Daisy

    2018-02-01

    The term 'caste' is used to describe the division of reproductive labour that defines eusocial insect societies. The definition of 'caste' has been debated over the last 50 years, specifically with respect to the simplest insect societies; this raises the question of whether a simple categorisation of social behaviour by reproductive state alone is helpful. Gene-level analyses of behaviours of individuals in hymenopteran social insect societies now provide a new empirical base-line for defining caste and understanding the evolution and maintenance of a reproductive division of labour. We review this literature to identify a set of potential molecular signatures that, combined with behavioural, morphological and physiological data, help define caste more precisely; these signatures vary with the type of society, and are likely to be influenced by ecology, life-history, and stage in the colony cycle. We conclude that genomic approaches provide us with additional ways to help quantify and categorise caste, and behaviour in general. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. An Integrated Molecular Database on Indian Insects.

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    Pratheepa, Maria; Venkatesan, Thiruvengadam; Gracy, Gandhi; Jalali, Sushil Kumar; Rangheswaran, Rajagopal; Antony, Jomin Cruz; Rai, Anil

    2018-01-01

    MOlecular Database on Indian Insects (MODII) is an online database linking several databases like Insect Pest Info, Insect Barcode Information System (IBIn), Insect Whole Genome sequence, Other Genomic Resources of National Bureau of Agricultural Insect Resources (NBAIR), Whole Genome sequencing of Honey bee viruses, Insecticide resistance gene database and Genomic tools. This database was developed with a holistic approach for collecting information about phenomic and genomic information of agriculturally important insects. This insect resource database is available online for free at http://cib.res.in. http://cib.res.in/.

  11. The genomes of two key bumblebee species with primitive eusocial organization

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sadd, Ben M.; Barribeau, Seth M.; Bloch, Guy

    2015-01-01

    BACKGROUND: The shift from solitary to social behavior is one of the major evolutionary transitions. Primitively eusocial bumblebees are uniquely placed to illuminate the evolution of highly eusocial insect societies. Bumblebees are also invaluable natural and agricultural pollinators, and there ...

  12. Monophyly and extensive extinction of advanced eusocial bees: insights from an unexpected Eocene diversity.

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    Engel, M S

    2001-02-13

    Advanced eusociality sometimes is given credit for the ecological success of termites, ants, some wasps, and some bees. Comprehensive study of bees fossilized in Baltic amber has revealed an unsuspected middle Eocene (ca. 45 million years ago) diversity of eusocial bee lineages. Advanced eusociality arose once in the bees with significant post-Eocene losses in diversity, leaving today only two advanced eusocial tribes comprising less than 2% of the total bee diversity, a trend analogous to that of hominid evolution. This pattern of changing diversity contradicts notions concerning the role of eusociality for evolutionary success in insects.

  13. Molecular determinants of caste differentiation in the highly eusocial honeybee Apis mellifera

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    Simões Zilá LP

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In honeybees, differential feeding of female larvae promotes the occurrence of two different phenotypes, a queen and a worker, from identical genotypes, through incremental alterations, which affect general growth, and character state alterations that result in the presence or absence of specific structures. Although previous studies revealed a link between incremental alterations and differential expression of physiometabolic genes, the molecular changes accompanying character state alterations remain unknown. Results By using cDNA microarray analyses of >6,000 Apis mellifera ESTs, we found 240 differentially expressed genes (DEGs between developing queens and workers. Many genes recorded as up-regulated in prospective workers appear to be unique to A. mellifera, suggesting that the workers' developmental pathway involves the participation of novel genes. Workers up-regulate more developmental genes than queens, whereas queens up-regulate a greater proportion of physiometabolic genes, including genes coding for metabolic enzymes and genes whose products are known to regulate the rate of mass-transforming processes and the general growth of the organism (e.g., tor. Many DEGs are likely to be involved in processes favoring the development of caste-biased structures, like brain, legs and ovaries, as well as genes that code for cytoskeleton constituents. Treatment of developing worker larvae with juvenile hormone (JH revealed 52 JH responsive genes, specifically during the critical period of caste development. Using Gibbs sampling and Expectation Maximization algorithms, we discovered eight overrepresented cis-elements from four gene groups. Graph theory and complex networks concepts were adopted to attain powerful graphical representations of the interrelation between cis-elements and genes and objectively quantify the degree of relationship between these entities. Conclusion We suggest that clusters of functionally related

  14. Molecular determinants of caste differentiation in the highly eusocial honeybee Apis mellifera.

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    Barchuk, Angel R; Cristino, Alexandre S; Kucharski, Robert; Costa, Luciano F; Simões, Zilá L P; Maleszka, Ryszard

    2007-06-18

    In honeybees, differential feeding of female larvae promotes the occurrence of two different phenotypes, a queen and a worker, from identical genotypes, through incremental alterations, which affect general growth, and character state alterations that result in the presence or absence of specific structures. Although previous studies revealed a link between incremental alterations and differential expression of physiometabolic genes, the molecular changes accompanying character state alterations remain unknown. By using cDNA microarray analyses of >6,000 Apis mellifera ESTs, we found 240 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) between developing queens and workers. Many genes recorded as up-regulated in prospective workers appear to be unique to A. mellifera, suggesting that the workers' developmental pathway involves the participation of novel genes. Workers up-regulate more developmental genes than queens, whereas queens up-regulate a greater proportion of physiometabolic genes, including genes coding for metabolic enzymes and genes whose products are known to regulate the rate of mass-transforming processes and the general growth of the organism (e.g., tor). Many DEGs are likely to be involved in processes favoring the development of caste-biased structures, like brain, legs and ovaries, as well as genes that code for cytoskeleton constituents. Treatment of developing worker larvae with juvenile hormone (JH) revealed 52 JH responsive genes, specifically during the critical period of caste development. Using Gibbs sampling and Expectation Maximization algorithms, we discovered eight overrepresented cis-elements from four gene groups. Graph theory and complex networks concepts were adopted to attain powerful graphical representations of the interrelation between cis-elements and genes and objectively quantify the degree of relationship between these entities. We suggest that clusters of functionally related DEGs are co-regulated during caste development in honeybees

  15. Juvenile hormone titres reflect social opportunities in the facultatively eusocial bee Megalopta genalis (Hymenoptera:Halictidae)

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    The evolution of eusociality is hypothesized to have involved de-coupling parental care from reproduction mediated by changes in endocrine regulation. While data for obligately eusocial insects are consistent with this hypothesis, we lack information from species representative of the transition fro...

  16. Molecular identification of the insect adipokinetic hormone receptors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Staubli, Frank; Jørgensen, Thomas J D; Cazzamali, Giuseppe

    2002-01-01

    identified the first insect AKH receptors, namely those from the fruitfly Drosophila melanogaster and the silkworm Bombyx mori. These results represent a breakthrough for insect molecular endocrinology, because it will lead to the cloning of all AKH receptors from all model insects used in AKH research, and...

  17. Relatedness, conflict, and the evolution of eusociality.

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    Xiaoyun Liao

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available The evolution of sterile worker castes in eusocial insects was a major problem in evolutionary theory until Hamilton developed a method called inclusive fitness. He used it to show that sterile castes could evolve via kin selection, in which a gene for altruistic sterility is favored when the altruism sufficiently benefits relatives carrying the gene. Inclusive fitness theory is well supported empirically and has been applied to many other areas, but a recent paper argued that the general method of inclusive fitness was wrong and advocated an alternative population genetic method. The claim of these authors was bolstered by a new model of the evolution of eusociality with novel conclusions that appeared to overturn some major results from inclusive fitness. Here we report an expanded examination of this kind of model for the evolution of eusociality and show that all three of its apparently novel conclusions are essentially false. Contrary to their claims, genetic relatedness is important and causal, workers are agents that can evolve to be in conflict with the queen, and eusociality is not so difficult to evolve. The misleading conclusions all resulted not from incorrect math but from overgeneralizing from narrow assumptions or parameter values. For example, all of their models implicitly assumed high relatedness, but modifying the model to allow lower relatedness shows that relatedness is essential and causal in the evolution of eusociality. Their modeling strategy, properly applied, actually confirms major insights of inclusive fitness studies of kin selection. This broad agreement of different models shows that social evolution theory, rather than being in turmoil, is supported by multiple theoretical approaches. It also suggests that extensive prior work using inclusive fitness, from microbial interactions to human evolution, should be considered robust unless shown otherwise.

  18. Challenging the inbreeding hypothesis in a eusocial mammal: population genetics of the naked mole-rat, Heterocephalus glaber.

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    Ingram, Colleen M; Troendle, Nicholas J; Gill, Clare A; Braude, Stanton; Honeycutt, Rodney L

    2015-10-01

    The role of genetic relatedness in the evolution of eusociality has been the topic of much debate, especially when contrasting eusocial insects with vertebrates displaying reproductive altruism. The naked mole-rat, Heterocephalus glaber, was the first described eusocial mammal. Although this discovery was based on an ecological constraints model of eusocial evolution, early genetic studies reported high levels of relatedness in naked mole-rats, providing a compelling argument that low dispersal rates and consanguineous mating (inbreeding as a mating system) are the driving forces for the evolution of this eusocial species. One caveat to accepting this long-held view is that the original genetic studies were based on limited sampling from the species' geographic distribution. A growing body of evidence supports a contrary view, with the original samples not representative of the species-rather reflecting a single founder event, establishing a small population south of the Athi River. Our study is the first to address these competing hypotheses by examining patterns of molecular variation in colonies sampled from north and south of the Athi and Tana rivers, which based on our results, serve to isolate genetically distinct populations of naked mole-rats. Although colonies south of the Athi River share a single mtDNA haplotype and are fixed at most microsatellite loci, populations north of the Athi River are considerably more variable. Our findings support the position that the low variation observed in naked mole-rat populations south of the Athi River reflects a founder event, rather than a consequence of this species' unusual mating system. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  19. Advances on polyphenism in insects.

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    Xue, Xian-Ci; Yu, Li

    2017-09-20

    Polyphenism denotes that one genome produces two or more distinct phenotypes due to environmental inductions. Many cases have been reported in insects, for example, metamorphosis, seasonal polyphenism, the caste of eusocial insects and so on. Polyphenism is one of the most important reasons for insects to survive and thrive, because insects can adapt and use the environmental cues around them in order to avoid predators and reproduce by changing their phenotypes. Polyphenism has received growing attentions, ranging from the earlier description of this phenomenon to the exploration of possible inducing factors. With the recent advent of the genomic era, more and more studies based on next generation sequencing, gene knockout and RNA interference have been reported to reveal the molecular mechanism of polyphenism. In this review, we summarize the progresses of the polyphenism in insects and envision prospects of future researches.

  20. Molecular Genetics of Beauveria bassiana Infection of Insects.

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    Ortiz-Urquiza, A; Keyhani, N O

    2016-01-01

    Research on the insect pathogenic filamentous fungus, Beauveria bassiana has witnessed significant growth in recent years from mainly physiological studies related to its insect biological control potential, to addressing fundamental questions regarding the underlying molecular mechanisms of fungal development and virulence. This has been in part due to a confluence of robust genetic tools and genomic resources for the fungus, and recognition of expanded ecological interactions with which the fungus engages. Beauveria bassiana is a broad host range insect pathogen that has the ability to form intimate symbiotic relationships with plants. Indeed, there is an increasing realization that the latter may be the predominant environmental interaction in which the fungus participates, and that insect parasitism may be an opportunist lifestyle evolved due to the carbon- and nitrogen-rich resources present in insect bodies. Here, we will review progress on the molecular genetics of B. bassiana, which has largely been directed toward identifying genetic pathways involved in stress response and virulence assumed to have practical applications in improving the insect control potential of the fungus. Important strides have also been made in understanding aspects of B. bassiana development. Finally, although increasingly apparent in a number of studies, there is a need for progressing beyond phenotypic mutant characterization to sufficiently investigate the molecular mechanisms underlying B. bassiana's unique and diverse lifestyles as saprophyte, insect pathogen, and plant mutualist. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Eusociality in history.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Betzig, Laura

    2014-03-01

    For more than 100,000 years, H. sapiens lived as foragers, in small family groups with low reproductive variance. A minority of men were able to father children by two or three women; and a majority of men and women were able to breed. But after the origin of farming around 10,000 years ago, reproductive variance increased. In civilizations which began in Mesopotamia, Egypt, India, and China, and then moved on to Greece and Rome, kings collected thousands of women, whose children were supported and guarded by thousands of eunuchs. Just a few hundred years ago, that trend reversed. Obligate sterility ended, and reproductive variance declined. For H. sapiens, as for other organisms, eusociality seems to be an effect of ecological constraints. Civilizations rose up in lake and river valleys, hemmed in by mountains and deserts. Egalitarianism became an option after empty habitats opened up.

  2. Molecular cogs of the insect circadian clock.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shirasu, Naoto; Shimohigashi, Yasuyuki; Tominaga, Yoshiya; Shimohigashi, Miki

    2003-08-01

    During the last five years, enormous progress has been made in understanding the molecular basis of circadian systems, mainly by molecular genetic studies using the mouse and fly. Extensive evidence has revealed that the core clock machinery involves "clock genes" and "clock proteins" functioning as molecular cogs. These participate in transcriptional/translational feedback loops and many homologous clock-components in the fruit fly Drosophila are also expressed in mammalian clock tissues with circadian rhythms. Thus, the mechanisms of the central clock seem to be conserved across animal kingdom. However, some recent studies imply that the present widely accepted molecular models of circadian clocks may not always be supported by the experimental evidence.

  3. Juvenile hormone levels reflect social opportunities in the facultatively eusocial sweat bee Megalopta genalis (Hymenoptera: Halictidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Adam R; Kapheim, Karen M; Pérez-Ortega, Betzi; Brent, Colin S; Wcislo, William T

    2013-01-01

    The evolution of eusociality is hypothesized to have involved de-coupling parental care from reproduction mediated by changes in endocrine regulation. While data for obligately eusocial insects are consistent with this hypothesis, we lack information from species representative of the transition from solitary reproduction to eusociality. Here we report the first evidence for a link between endocrine processes and social behavior in a facultatively eusocial bee, Megalopta genalis (Halictidae). Using females that varied in social, reproductive, and ecological context, we measured juvenile hormone (JH), a major regulator of colony caste dynamics in other eusocial species. JH was low at adult emergence, but elevated after 10 days in all nesting females. Females reared in cages with ad lib nutrition, however, did not elevate JH levels after 10 days. All reproductive females had significantly more JH than all age-matched non-reproductive females, suggesting a gonadotropic function. Among females in established nests, JH was higher in queens than workers and solitary reproductives, suggesting a role for JH in social dominance. A lack of significant differences in JH between solitary reproductives and non-reproductive workers suggests that JH content reflects more than reproductive status. Our data support the hypothesis that endocrine modifications are involved in the evolutionary decoupling of reproductive and somatic effort in social insects. These are the first measurements of JH in a solitary-nesting hymenopteran, and the first to compare eusocial and solitary nesting individuals of the same species. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  4. Inclusive fitness theory and eusociality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Abbot, P.; Wrangham, R.; Abe, J.

    2011-01-01

    Arising from M. A. Nowak, C. E. Tarnita & E. O. Wilson 466, 1057-1062 (2010); Nowak et al. reply. Nowak et al. argue that inclusive fitness theory has been of little value in explaining the natural world, and that it has led to negligible progress in explaining the evolution of eusociality. However...

  5. Intraspecific queen parasitism in a highly eusocial bee

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    Wenseleers, Tom; Alves, Denise A.; Francoy, Tiago M.; Billen, Johan; Imperatriz-Fonseca, Vera L.

    2011-01-01

    Insect societies are well-known for their advanced cooperation, but their colonies are also vulnerable to reproductive parasitism. Here, we present a novel example of an intraspecific social parasitism in a highly eusocial bee, the stingless bee Melipona scutellaris. In particular, we provide genetic evidence which shows that, upon loss of the mother queen, many colonies are invaded by unrelated queens that fly in from unrelated hives nearby. The reasons for the occurrence of this surprising form of social parasitism may be linked to the fact that unlike honeybees, Melipona bees produce new queens in great excess of colony needs, and that this exerts much greater selection on queens to seek alternative reproductive options, such as by taking over other nests. Overall, our results are the first to demonstrate that queens in highly eusocial bees can found colonies not only via supersedure or swarming, but also by infiltrating and taking over other unrelated nests. PMID:20961883

  6. Intraspecific queen parasitism in a highly eusocial bee.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wenseleers, Tom; Alves, Denise A; Francoy, Tiago M; Billen, Johan; Imperatriz-Fonseca, Vera L

    2011-04-23

    Insect societies are well-known for their advanced cooperation, but their colonies are also vulnerable to reproductive parasitism. Here, we present a novel example of an intraspecific social parasitism in a highly eusocial bee, the stingless bee Melipona scutellaris. In particular, we provide genetic evidence which shows that, upon loss of the mother queen, many colonies are invaded by unrelated queens that fly in from unrelated hives nearby. The reasons for the occurrence of this surprising form of social parasitism may be linked to the fact that unlike honeybees, Melipona bees produce new queens in great excess of colony needs, and that this exerts much greater selection on queens to seek alternative reproductive options, such as by taking over other nests. Overall, our results are the first to demonstrate that queens in highly eusocial bees can found colonies not only via supersedure or swarming, but also by infiltrating and taking over other unrelated nests.

  7. Molecular determinants of odorant receptor function in insects

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    2014-07-20

    Jul 20, 2014 ... other host-odor responsive receptors from vector insect spe- cies would .... those that mediate host-seeking behaviour in insect disease vectors and ... receptors are transmitted and processed via olfactory circuits. (Vosshall ...

  8. Developmental Transcriptome for a Facultatively Eusocial Bee, Megalopta genalis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Beryl M; Wcislo, William T; Robinson, Gene E

    2015-08-14

    Transcriptomes provide excellent foundational resources for mechanistic and evolutionary analyses of complex traits. We present a developmental transcriptome for the facultatively eusocial bee Megalopta genalis, which represents a potential transition point in the evolution of eusociality. A de novo transcriptome assembly of Megalopta genalis was generated using paired-end Illumina sequencing and the Trinity assembler. Males and females of all life stages were aligned to this transcriptome for analysis of gene expression profiles throughout development. Gene Ontology analysis indicates that stage-specific genes are involved in ion transport, cell-cell signaling, and metabolism. A number of distinct biological processes are upregulated in each life stage, and transitions between life stages involve shifts in dominant functional processes, including shifts from transcriptional regulation in embryos to metabolism in larvae, and increased lipid metabolism in adults. We expect that this transcriptome will provide a useful resource for future analyses to better understand the molecular basis of the evolution of eusociality and, more generally, phenotypic plasticity. Copyright © 2015 Jones et al.

  9. Only full-sibling families evolved eusociality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Boomsma, Jacobus J; Beekman, Madeleine; Cornwallis, Charlie K

    2011-01-01

    Arising from M. A. Nowak, C. E. Tarnita & E. O. Wilson 466, 1057-1062 (2010); Nowak et al. reply. The paper by Nowak et al. has the evolution of eusociality as its title, but it is mostly about something else. It argues against inclusive fitness theory and offers an alternative modelling approach...... that is claimed to be more fundamental and general, but which, we believe, has no practical biological meaning for the evolution of eusociality. Nowak et al. overlook the robust empirical observation that eusociality has only arisen in clades where mothers are associated with their full-sibling offspring; that is......, in families where the average relatedness of offspring to siblings is as high as to their own offspring, independent of population structure or ploidy. We believe that this omission makes the paper largely irrelevant for understanding the evolution of eusociality....

  10. Evolution: sympatric speciation the eusocial way

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Boomsma, Jacobus Jan; Nash, David Richard

    2014-01-01

    Sympatric speciation normally requires particular conditions of ecological niche differentiation. However, ant social parasites have been suspected to arise sympatrically, because (dis)loyalty to eusocial kin-structures induces disruptive selection for dispersal and inbreeding. A new study docume...

  11. Lifetime monogamy and the evolution of eusociality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Boomsma, Jacobus J

    2009-01-01

    and termites is thus analogous to the evolution of multicellularity. Focusing on lifetime monogamy as a universal precondition for the evolution of obligate eusociality simplifies the theory and may help to resolve controversies about levels of selection and targets of adaptation. The monogamy window...... underlines that cooperative breeding and eusociality are different domains of social evolution, characterized by different sectors of parameter space for Hamilton's rule....

  12. Social insect genomes exhibit dramatic evolution in gene composition and regulation while preserving regulatory features linked to sociality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Simola, Daniel F.; Wissler, Lothar; Donahue, Greg

    2013-01-01

    Genomes of eusocial insects code for dramatic examples of phenotypic plasticity and social organization. We compared the genomes of seven ants, the honeybee, and various solitary insects to examine whether eusocial lineages share distinct features of genomic organization. Each ant lineage contain...

  13. Molecular evolution of the major chemosensory gene families in insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez-Gracia, A; Vieira, F G; Rozas, J

    2009-09-01

    Chemoreception is a crucial biological process that is essential for the survival of animals. In insects, olfaction allows the organism to recognise volatile cues that allow the detection of food, predators and mates, whereas the sense of taste commonly allows the discrimination of soluble stimulants that elicit feeding behaviours and can also initiate innate sexual and reproductive responses. The most important proteins involved in the recognition of chemical cues comprise moderately sized multigene families. These families include odorant-binding proteins (OBPs) and chemosensory proteins (CSPs), which are involved in peripheral olfactory processing, and the chemoreceptor superfamily formed by the olfactory receptor (OR) and gustatory receptor (GR) families. Here, we review some recent evolutionary genomic studies of chemosensory gene families using the data from fully sequenced insect genomes, especially from the 12 newly available Drosophila genomes. Overall, the results clearly support the birth-and-death model as the major mechanism of evolution in these gene families. Namely, new members arise by tandem gene duplication, progressively diverge in sequence and function, and can eventually be lost from the genome by a deletion or pseudogenisation event. Adaptive changes fostered by environmental shifts are also observed in the evolution of chemosensory families in insects and likely involve reproductive, ecological or behavioural traits. Consequently, the current size of these gene families is mainly a result of random gene gain and loss events. This dynamic process may represent a major source of genetic variation, providing opportunities for FUTURE specific adaptations.

  14. Molecular approaches to the modification of insect pest populations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Crampton, J.M.; Stowell, S.; Parkes, R.; Karras, M.; Sinden, R.E.

    2000-01-01

    After considerable research effort over the last decade or more, the ability to routinely introduce specific genes and other DNA constructs (such as linked promoter:gene cassettes) into a range of pest insect genomes at high efficiency using transgenic approaches is fast becoming a reality. The critical issue that now needs to be addressed is how best to incorporate these techniques into SIT in order to improve its effectiveness or efficiency. Manipulation of insect pest genomes using transgenic approaches may be used in two ways. It may be used as an analytical tool, or to introduce or modify either endogenous or heterologous genes and their expression in the pest insect of choice. In this way, new strains may be generated with a set of desired characteristics beneficial to SIT. In order to realise the full potential of the technology, a number of issues and research areas is being explored and progress to date is reviewed below. Specific examples are drawn from work on mosquito systems in order to illustrate the approaches available to identify genes and promoters of interest and the potential applications to SIT

  15. Management of insect pests: Nuclear and related molecular and genetic techniques

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1993-01-01

    The conference was organized in eight sessions: opening, genetic engineering and molecular biology, genetics, operational programmes, F 1 sterility and insect behaviour, biocontrol, research and development on the tsetse fly, and quarantine. The 64 individual contributions have been indexed separately for INIS. Refs, figs and tabs

  16. Physiological variation as a mechanism for developmental caste-biasing in a facultatively eusocial sweat bee.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kapheim, Karen M; Smith, Adam R; Ihle, Kate E; Amdam, Gro V; Nonacs, Peter; Wcislo, William T

    2012-04-07

    Social castes of eusocial insects may have arisen through an evolutionary modification of an ancestral reproductive ground plan, such that some adults emerge from development physiologically primed to specialize on reproduction (queens) and others on maternal care expressed as allo-maternal behaviour (workers). This hypothesis predicts that variation in reproductive physiology should emerge from ontogeny and underlie division of labour. To test these predictions, we identified physiological links to division of labour in a facultatively eusocial sweat bee, Megalopta genalis. Queens are larger, have larger ovaries and have higher vitellogenin titres than workers. We then compared queens and workers with their solitary counterparts-solitary reproductive females and dispersing nest foundresses-to investigate physiological variation as a factor in caste evolution. Within dyads, body size and ovary development were the best predictors of behavioural class. Queens and dispersers are larger, with larger ovaries than their solitary counterparts. Finally, we raised bees in social isolation to investigate the influence of ontogeny on physiological variation. Body size and ovary development among isolated females were highly variable, and linked to differences in vitellogenin titres. As these are key physiological predictors of social caste, our results provide evidence for developmental caste-biasing in a facultatively eusocial bee.

  17. Detection of termites and other insects consumed by African great apes using molecular fecal analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamad, Ibrahim; Delaporte, Eric; Raoult, Didier; Bittar, Fadi

    2014-03-27

    The consumption of insects by apes has previously been reported based on direct observations and/or trail signs in feces. However, DNA-based diet analyses may have the potential to reveal trophic links for these wild species. Herein, we analyzed the insect-diet diversity of 9 feces obtained from three species of African great apes, gorilla (Gorilla gorilla gorilla), chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) and bonobo (Pan paniscus), using two mitochondrial amplifications for arthropods. A total of 1056 clones were sequenced for Cyt-b and COI gene libraries, which contained 50 and 56 operational taxonomic units (OTUs), respectively. BLAST research revealed that the OTUs belonged to 32 families from 5 orders (Diptera, Isoptera, Lepidoptera, Coleoptera, and Orthoptera). While ants were not detected by this method, the consumption of flies, beetles, moths, mosquitoes and termites was evident in these samples. Our findings indicate that molecular techniques can be used to analyze insect food items in wild animals.

  18. Biological insect control using Metarhizium anisopliae: morphological, molecular, and ecological aspects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patricia Vieira Tiago

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Microbial control of insects is based on the rational use of pathogens to maintain environmentally balanced pest population levels, and Metarhizium anisopliae has been the most studied and most utilized fungal species for that purpose. The natural genetic variability of entomopathogenic fungi is considered one of the principal advantages of microbial insect control. The inter- and intraspecific variability and the genetic diversity and population structures of Metarhizium and other entomopathogenic fungi have been examined using ITS-RFLP, ISSR, and ISSP molecular markers. The persistence of M. anisopliae in the soil and its possible effects on the structures of resident microbial communities must be considered when selecting isolates for biological insect control.

  19. Global patterns of insect diversification: towards a reconciliation of fossil and molecular evidence?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Condamine, Fabien L; Clapham, Matthew E; Kergoat, Gael J

    2016-01-18

    Macroevolutionary studies of insects at diverse taxonomic scales often reveal dynamic evolutionary patterns, with multiple inferred diversification rate shifts. Responses to major past environmental changes, such as the Cretaceous Terrestrial Revolution, or the development of major key innovations, such as wings or complete metamorphosis are usually invoked as potential evolutionary triggers. However this view is partially contradicted by studies on the family-level fossil record showing that insect diversification was relatively constant through time. In an attempt to reconcile both views, we investigate large-scale insect diversification dynamics at family level using two distinct types of diversification analyses on a molecular timetree representing ca. 82% of the extant families, and reassess the insect fossil diversity using up-to-date records. Analyses focusing on the fossil record recovered an early burst of diversification, declining to low and steady rates through time, interrupted by extinction events. Phylogenetic analyses showed that major shifts of diversification rates only occurred in the four richest holometabolous orders. Both suggest that neither the development of flight or complete metamorphosis nor the Cretaceous Terrestrial Revolution environmental changes induced immediate changes in diversification regimes; instead clade-specific innovations likely promoted the diversification of major insect orders.

  20. Phylogenomics Controlling for Base Compositional Bias Reveals a Single Origin of Eusociality in Corbiculate Bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romiguier, Jonathan; Cameron, Sydney A; Woodard, S Hollis; Fischman, Brielle J; Keller, Laurent; Praz, Christophe J

    2016-03-01

    As increasingly large molecular data sets are collected for phylogenomics, the conflicting phylogenetic signal among gene trees poses challenges to resolve some difficult nodes of the Tree of Life. Among these nodes, the phylogenetic position of the honey bees (Apini) within the corbiculate bee group remains controversial, despite its considerable importance for understanding the emergence and maintenance of eusociality. Here, we show that this controversy stems in part from pervasive phylogenetic conflicts among GC-rich gene trees. GC-rich genes typically have a high nucleotidic heterogeneity among species, which can induce topological conflicts among gene trees. When retaining only the most GC-homogeneous genes or using a nonhomogeneous model of sequence evolution, our analyses reveal a monophyletic group of the three lineages with a eusocial lifestyle (honey bees, bumble bees, and stingless bees). These phylogenetic relationships strongly suggest a single origin of eusociality in the corbiculate bees, with no reversal to solitary living in this group. To accurately reconstruct other important evolutionary steps across the Tree of Life, we suggest removing GC-rich and GC-heterogeneous genes from large phylogenomic data sets. Interpreted as a consequence of genome-wide variations in recombination rates, this GC effect can affect all taxa featuring GC-biased gene conversion, which is common in eukaryotes. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  1. Genetic characterization, molecular epidemiology, and phylogenetic relationships of insect-specific viruses in the taxon Negevirus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nunes, Marcio R T; Contreras-Gutierrez, María Angélica; Guzman, Hilda; Martins, Livia C; Barbirato, Mayla Feitoza; Savit, Chelsea; Balta, Victoria; Uribe, Sandra; Vivero, Rafael; Suaza, Juan David; Oliveira, Hamilton; Nunes Neto, Joaquin P; Carvalho, Valeria L; da Silva, Sandro Patroca; Cardoso, Jedson F; de Oliveira, Rodrigo Santo; da Silva Lemos, Poliana; Wood, Thomas G; Widen, Steven G; Vasconcelos, Pedro F C; Fish, Durland; Vasilakis, Nikos; Tesh, Robert B

    2017-04-01

    The recently described taxon Negevirus is comprised of a diverse group of insect-specific viruses isolated from mosquitoes and phlebotomine sandflies. In this study, a comprehensive genetic characterization, molecular, epidemiological and evolutionary analyses were conducted on nearly full-length sequences of 91 new negevirus isolates obtained in Brazil, Colombia, Peru, Panama, USA and Nepal. We demonstrated that these arthropod restricted viruses are clustered in two major phylogenetic groups with origins related to three plant virus genera (Cilevirus, Higrevirus and Blunevirus). Molecular analyses demonstrated that specific host correlations are not present with most negeviruses; instead, high genetic variability, wide host-range, and cross-species transmission were noted. The data presented here also revealed the existence of five novel insect-specific viruses falling into two arthropod-restrictive virus taxa, previously proposed as distinct genera, designated Nelorpivirus and Sandewavirus. Our results provide a better understanding of the molecular epidemiology, evolution, taxonomy and stability of this group of insect-restricted viruses. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Sequestration of plant secondary metabolites by insect herbivores: molecular mechanisms and ecological consequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erb, Matthias; Robert, Christelle Am

    2016-04-01

    Numerous insect herbivores can take up and store plant toxins as self-defense against their own natural enemies. Plant toxin sequestration is tightly linked with tolerance strategies that keep the toxins functional. Specific transporters have been identified that likely allow the herbivore to control the spatiotemporal dynamics of toxin accumulation. Certain herbivores furthermore possess specific enzymes to boost the bioactivity of the sequestered toxins. Ecologists have studied plant toxin sequestration for decades. The recently uncovered molecular mechanisms in combination with transient, non-transgenic systems to manipulate insect gene expression will help to understand the importance of toxin sequestration for food-web dynamics in nature. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Developmental Transcriptome for a Facultatively Eusocial Bee, Megalopta genalis

    OpenAIRE

    Jones, Beryl M.; Wcislo, William T.; Robinson, Gene E.

    2015-01-01

    Transcriptomes provide excellent foundational resources for mechanistic and evolutionary analyses of complex traits. We present a developmental transcriptome for the facultatively eusocial bee Megalopta genalis, which represents a potential transition point in the evolution of eusociality. A de novo transcriptome assembly of Megalopta genalis was generated using paired-end Illumina sequencing and the Trinity assembler. Males and females of all life stages were aligned to this transcriptome fo...

  4. Kinship, parental manipulation and evolutionary origins of eusociality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kapheim, Karen M; Nonacs, Peter; Smith, Adam R; Wayne, Robert K; Wcislo, William T

    2015-03-22

    One of the hallmarks of eusociality is that workers forego their own reproduction to assist their mother in raising siblings. This seemingly altruistic behaviour may benefit workers if gains in indirect fitness from rearing siblings outweigh the loss of direct fitness. If worker presence is advantageous to mothers, however, eusociality may evolve without net benefits to workers. Indirect fitness benefits are often cited as evidence for the importance of inclusive fitness in eusociality, but have rarely been measured in natural populations. We compared inclusive fitness of alternative social strategies in the tropical sweat bee, Megalopta genalis, for which eusociality is optional. Our results show that workers have significantly lower inclusive fitness than females that found their own nests. In mathematical simulations based on M. genalis field data, eusociality cannot evolve with reduced intra-nest relatedness. The simulated distribution of alternative social strategies matched observed distributions of M. genalis social strategies when helping behaviour was simulated as the result of maternal manipulation, but not as worker altruism. Thus, eusociality in M. genalis is best explained through kin selection, but the underlying mechanism is likely maternal manipulation. © 2015 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  5. Evolution of DNA Methylation across Insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bewick, Adam J; Vogel, Kevin J; Moore, Allen J; Schmitz, Robert J

    2017-03-01

    DNA methylation contributes to gene and transcriptional regulation in eukaryotes, and therefore has been hypothesized to facilitate the evolution of plastic traits such as sociality in insects. However, DNA methylation is sparsely studied in insects. Therefore, we documented patterns of DNA methylation across a wide diversity of insects. We predicted that underlying enzymatic machinery is concordant with patterns of DNA methylation. Finally, given the suggestion that DNA methylation facilitated social evolution in Hymenoptera, we tested the hypothesis that the DNA methylation system will be associated with presence/absence of sociality among other insect orders. We found DNA methylation to be widespread, detected in all orders examined except Diptera (flies). Whole genome bisulfite sequencing showed that orders differed in levels of DNA methylation. Hymenopteran (ants, bees, wasps and sawflies) had some of the lowest levels, including several potential losses. Blattodea (cockroaches and termites) show all possible patterns, including a potential loss of DNA methylation in a eusocial species whereas solitary species had the highest levels. Species with DNA methylation do not always possess the typical enzymatic machinery. We identified a gene duplication event in the maintenance DNA methyltransferase 1 (DNMT1) that is shared by some Hymenoptera, and paralogs have experienced divergent, nonneutral evolution. This diversity and nonneutral evolution of underlying machinery suggests alternative DNA methylation pathways may exist. Phylogenetically corrected comparisons revealed no evidence that supports evolutionary association between sociality and DNA methylation. Future functional studies will be required to advance our understanding of DNA methylation in insects. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  6. Accelerated evolution of innate immunity proteins in social insects: adaptive evolution or relaxed constraint?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harpur, Brock A; Zayed, Amro

    2013-07-01

    The genomes of eusocial insects have a reduced complement of immune genes-an unusual finding considering that sociality provides ideal conditions for disease transmission. The following three hypotheses have been invoked to explain this finding: 1) social insects are attacked by fewer pathogens, 2) social insects have effective behavioral or 3) novel molecular mechanisms for combating pathogens. At the molecular level, these hypotheses predict that canonical innate immune pathways experience a relaxation of selective constraint. A recent study of several innate immune genes in ants and bees showed a pattern of accelerated amino acid evolution, which is consistent with either positive selection or a relaxation of constraint. We studied the population genetics of innate immune genes in the honey bee Apis mellifera by partially sequencing 13 genes from the bee's Toll pathway (∼10.5 kb) and 20 randomly chosen genes (∼16.5 kb) sequenced in 43 diploid workers. Relative to the random gene set, Toll pathway genes had significantly higher levels of amino acid replacement mutations segregating within A. mellifera and fixed between A. mellifera and A. cerana. However, levels of diversity and divergence at synonymous sites did not differ between the two gene sets. Although we detect strong signs of balancing selection on the pathogen recognition gene pgrp-sa, many of the genes in the Toll pathway show signatures of relaxed selective constraint. These results are consistent with the reduced complement of innate immune genes found in social insects and support the hypothesis that some aspect of eusociality renders canonical innate immunity superfluous.

  7. Rates and patterns of molecular evolution in freshwater versus terrestrial insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitterboeck, T Fatima; Fu, Jinzhong; Adamowicz, Sarah J

    2016-11-01

    Insect lineages have crossed between terrestrial and aquatic habitats many times, for both immature and adult life stages. We explore patterns in molecular evolutionary rates between 42 sister pairs of related terrestrial and freshwater insect clades using publicly available protein-coding DNA sequence data from the orders Coleoptera, Diptera, Lepidoptera, Hemiptera, Mecoptera, Trichoptera, and Neuroptera. We furthermore test for habitat-associated convergent molecular evolution in the cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI) gene in general and at a particular amino acid site previously reported to exhibit habitat-linked convergence within an aquatic beetle group. While ratios of nonsynonymous-to-synonymous substitutions across available loci were higher in terrestrial than freshwater-associated taxa in 26 of 42 lineage pairs, a stronger trend was observed (20 of 31, p binomial = 0.15, p Wilcoxon = 0.017) when examining only terrestrial-aquatic pairs including fully aquatic taxa. We did not observe any widespread changes at particular amino acid sites in COI associated with habitat shifts, although there may be general differences in selection regime linked to habitat.

  8. Reproductive concessions between related and unrelated members promote eusociality in bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrade, Aline C R; Miranda, Elder A; Del Lama, Marco A; Nascimento, Fábio S

    2016-05-23

    Animal societies exhibit remarkable variation in their breeding strategies. Individuals can maximize their fitness by either reproducing or by helping relatives. Social hymenopterans have been key taxa for the study of Hamilton's inclusive fitness theory because the haplodiploid sex-determination system results in asymmetric relatedness among breeders producing conflict over the partitioning of reproduction. In small cooperative groups of insects, totipotent individuals may maximize their inclusive fitness by controlling reproduction despotically rather than helping their relatives. Here, we demonstrate that the dominant females of the primitively eusocial bee Euglossa melanotricha (Apidae: Euglossini) control reproduction, but concede part of the reproductive output with their related and unrelated subordinates. As expected, a dominant female capitalizes on the direct reproduction of related subordinates, according to her interests. We found that reproductive skew was positively correlated with relatedness. The concessions were highly reduced in mother-daughter and sibling nests (relatedness r ± s.d. = 0.54 ± 0.02 and 0.79 ± 0.02, respectively) but much more egalitarian in unrelated associations (r = -0.10 ± 0.01). We concluded that reproductive skew in these primitively eusocial bees is strongly related to the genetic structure of associations, and also that females are able to assess pairwise relatedness, either directly or indirectly, and use this information to mediate social contracts.

  9. Monophyly and extensive extinction of advanced eusocial bees: Insights from an unexpected Eocene diversity

    OpenAIRE

    Engel, Michael S.

    2001-01-01

    Advanced eusociality sometimes is given credit for the ecological success of termites, ants, some wasps, and some bees. Comprehensive study of bees fossilized in Baltic amber has revealed an unsuspected middle Eocene (ca. 45 million years ago) diversity of eusocial bee lineages. Advanced eusociality arose once in the bees with significant post-Eocene losses in diversity, leaving today only two advanced eusocial tribes comprising less than 2% of the total bee divers...

  10. Socially induced brain development in a facultatively eusocial sweat bee Megalopta genalis (Halictidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Adam R; Seid, Marc A; Jiménez, Lissette C; Wcislo, William T

    2010-07-22

    Changes in the relative size of brain regions are often dependent on experience and environmental stimulation, which includes an animal's social environment. Some studies suggest that social interactions are cognitively demanding, and have examined predictions that the evolution of sociality led to the evolution of larger brains. Previous studies have compared species with different social organizations or different groups within obligately social species. Here, we report the first intraspecific study to examine how social experience shapes brain volume using a species with facultatively eusocial or solitary behaviour, the sweat bee Megalopta genalis. Serial histological sections were used to reconstruct and measure the volume of brain areas of bees behaving as social reproductives, social workers, solitary reproductives or 1-day-old bees that are undifferentiated with respect to the social phenotype. Social reproductives showed increased development of the mushroom body (an area of the insect brain associated with sensory integration and learning) relative to social workers and solitary reproductives. The gross neuroanatomy of young bees is developmentally similar to the advanced eusocial species previously studied, despite vast differences in colony size and social organization. Our results suggest that the transition from solitary to social behaviour is associated with modified brain development, and that maintaining dominance, rather than sociality per se, leads to increased mushroom body development, even in the smallest social groups possible (i.e. groups with two bees). Such results suggest that capabilities to navigate the complexities of social life may be a factor shaping brain evolution in some social insects, as for some vertebrates.

  11. Molecular interrogation of the feeding behaviour of field captured individual insects for interpretation of multiple host plant use.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James P Hereward

    Full Text Available The way in which herbivorous insect individuals use multiple host species is difficult to quantify under field conditions, but critical to understanding the evolutionary processes underpinning insect-host plant relationships. In this study we developed a novel approach to understanding the host plant interactions of the green mirid, Creontiades dilutus, a highly motile heteropteran bug that has been associated with many plant species. We combine quantified sampling of the insect across its various host plant species within particular sites and a molecular comparison between the insects' gut contents and available host plants. This approach allows inferences to be made as to the plants fed upon by individual insects in the field. Quantified sampling shows that this "generalist" species is consistently more abundant on two species in the genus Cullen (Fabaceae, its primary host species, than on any other of its numerous listed hosts. The chloroplast intergenic sequences reveal that C. dilutus frequently feeds on plants additional to the one from which it was collected, even when individuals were sampled from the primary host species. These data may be reconciled by viewing multiple host use in this species as an adaptation to survive spatiotemporally ephemeral habitats. The methodological framework developed here provides a basis from which new insights into the feeding behaviour and host plant relationships of herbivorous insects can be derived, which will benefit not only ecological interpretation but also our understanding of the evolution of these relationships.

  12. Caste-biased gene expression in a facultatively eusocial bee suggests a role for genetic accommodation in the evolution of eusociality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Beryl M; Kingwell, Callum J; Wcislo, William T; Robinson, Gene E

    2017-01-11

    Developmental plasticity may accelerate the evolution of phenotypic novelty through genetic accommodation, but studies of genetic accommodation often lack knowledge of the ancestral state to place selected traits in an evolutionary context. A promising approach for assessing genetic accommodation involves using a comparative framework to ask whether ancestral plasticity is related to the evolution of a particular trait. Bees are an excellent group for such comparisons because caste-based societies (eusociality) have evolved multiple times independently and extant species exhibit different modes of eusociality. We measured brain and abdominal gene expression in a facultatively eusocial bee, Megalopta genalis, and assessed whether plasticity in this species is functionally linked to eusocial traits in other bee lineages. Caste-biased abdominal genes in M. genalis overlapped significantly with caste-biased genes in obligately eusocial bees. Moreover, caste-biased genes in M. genalis overlapped significantly with genes shown to be rapidly evolving in multiple studies of 10 bee species, particularly for genes in the glycolysis pathway and other genes involved in metabolism. These results provide support for the idea that eusociality can evolve via genetic accommodation, with plasticity in facultatively eusocial species like M. genalis providing a substrate for selection during the evolution of caste in obligately eusocial lineages. © 2017 The Author(s).

  13. Molecular evolution of the insect chemoreceptor gene superfamily in Drosophila melanogaster

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robertson, Hugh M.; Warr, Coral G.; Carlson, John R.

    2003-01-01

    The insect chemoreceptor superfamily in Drosophila melanogaster is predicted to consist of 62 odorant receptor (Or) and 68 gustatory receptor (Gr) proteins, encoded by families of 60 Or and 60 Gr genes through alternative splicing. We include two previously undescribed Or genes and two previously undescribed Gr genes; two previously predicted Or genes are shown to be alternative splice forms. Three polymorphic pseudogenes and one highly defective pseudogene are recognized. Phylogenetic analysis reveals deep branches connecting multiple highly divergent clades within the Gr family, and the Or family appears to be a single highly expanded lineage within the superfamily. The genes are spread throughout the Drosophila genome, with some relatively recently diverged genes still clustered in the genome. The Gr5a gene on the X chromosome, which encodes a receptor for the sugar trehalose, has transposed from one such tandem cluster of six genes at cytological location 64, as has Gr61a, and all eight of these receptors might bind sugars. Analysis of intron evolution suggests that the common ancestor consisted of a long N-terminal exon encoding transmembrane domains 1-5 followed by three exons encoding transmembrane domains 6-7. As many as 57 additional introns have been acquired idiosyncratically during the evolution of the superfamily, whereas the ancestral introns and some of the older idiosyncratic introns have been lost at least 48 times independently. Altogether, these patterns of molecular evolution suggest that this is an ancient superfamily of chemoreceptors, probably dating back at least to the origin of the arthropods. PMID:14608037

  14. Detection of Termites and Other Insects Consumed by African Great Apes using Molecular Fecal Analysis

    OpenAIRE

    Ibrahim Hamad; Eric Delaporte; Didier Raoult; Fadi Bittar

    2014-01-01

    The consumption of insects by apes has previously been reported based on direct observations and/or trail signs in feces. However, DNA-based diet analyses may have the potential to reveal trophic links for these wild species. Herein, we analyzed the insect-diet diversity of 9 feces obtained from three species of African great apes, gorilla (Gorilla gorilla gorilla), chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) and bonobo (Pan paniscus), using two mitochondrial amplifications for arthropods. A total of 1056 c...

  15. Molecular evolution of the insect Halloween family of cytochrome P450s

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rewitz, Kim; O'Connor, Michael B.; Gilbert, Lawrence I.

    2007-01-01

    . In the present study, we examine the phylogenetic relationships of these P450 genes in holometabolous insects belonging to the orders Hymenoptera, Coleoptera, Lepidoptera and Diptera. The analyzed insect genomes each contains single orthologs of Phantom (CYP306A1), Disembodied (CYP302A1), Shadow (CYP315A1...... of orthologous Halloween genes indicates selective constraint on these residues to prevent functional divergence. The results suggest that duplications of ancestral P450 genes that acquired novel functions may have been an important mechanism for evolving the ecdysteroidogenic pathway. © 2007 Elsevier B.V. All...

  16. Social immunity and the evolution of group living in insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meunier, Joël

    2015-05-26

    The evolution of group living requires that individuals limit the inherent risks of parasite infection. To this end, group living insects have developed a unique capability of mounting collective anti-parasite defences, such as allogrooming and corpse removal from the nest. Over the last 20 years, this phenomenon (called social immunity) was mostly studied in eusocial insects, with results emphasizing its importance in derived social systems. However, the role of social immunity in the early evolution of group living remains unclear. Here, I investigate this topic by first presenting the definitions of social immunity and discussing their applications across social systems. I then provide an up-to-date appraisal of the collective and individual mechanisms of social immunity described in eusocial insects and show that they have counterparts in non-eusocial species and even solitary species. Finally, I review evidence demonstrating that the increased risks of parasite infection in group living species may both decrease and increase the level of personal immunity, and discuss how the expression of social immunity could drive these opposite effects. By highlighting similarities and differences of social immunity across social systems, this review emphasizes the potential importance of this phenomenon in the early evolution of the multiple forms of group living in insects. © 2015 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  17. Genomic, RNAseq, and Molecular Modeling Evidence Suggests That the Major Allergen Domain in Insects Evolved from a Homodimeric Origin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Randall, Thomas A.; Perera, Lalith; London, Robert E.; Mueller, Geoffrey A.

    2013-01-01

    The major allergen domain (MA) is widely distributed in insects. The crystal structure of a single Bla g 1 MA revealed a novel protein fold in which the fundamental structure was a duplex of two subsequences (monomers), which had diverged over time. This suggested that the evolutionary origin of the MA structure may have been a homodimer of this smaller subsequence. Using publicly available genomic data, the distribution of the basic unit of this class of proteins was determined to better understand its evolutionary history. The duplication and divergence is examined at three distinct levels of resolution: 1) within the orders Diptera and Hymenoptera, 2) within one genus Drosophila, and 3) within one species Aedes aegypti. Within the family Culicidae, we have found two separate occurrences of monomers as independent genes. The organization of the gene family in A. aegypti shows a common evolutionary origin for its monomer and several closely related MAs. Molecular modeling of the A. aegypti monomer with the unique Bla g 1 fold confirms the distant evolutionary relationship and supports the feasibility of homodimer formation from a single monomer. RNAseq data for A. aegypti confirms that the monomer is expressed in the mosquito similar to other A. aegypti MAs after a blood meal. Together, these data support the contention that the detected monomer shares similar functional characteristics to related MAs in other insects. An extensive search for this domain outside of Insecta confirms that the MAs are restricted to insects. PMID:24253356

  18. Lifespan divergence between social insect castes : Challenges and opportunities for evolutionary theories of aging

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kramer, Boris H; van Doorn, G Sander; Weissing, Franz J; Pen, Ido

    The extraordinarily long lifespans of queens (and kings) in eusocial insects and the strikingly large differences in life expectancy between workers and queens challenge our understanding of the evolution of aging and provide unique opportunities for studying the causes underlying adaptive variation

  19. Plant interactions with microbes and insects: from molecular mechanisms to ecology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pieterse, C.M.J.; Dicke, M.

    2007-01-01

    Plants are members of complex communities and interact both with antagonists and beneficial organisms. An important question in plant defense-signaling research is how plants integrate signals induced by pathogens, beneficial microbes and insects into the most appropriate adaptive response.

  20. Histochemical and molecular evaluation of the prevalence of Leishmania spp. in hematophagous insects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Willian Marinho Dourado Coelho

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The prevalence study of Leishmania spp. in hematophagous insects captured from the environment in bat roosts and pigeon nests, or feeding their hosts (cattle, pigs, horses, dogs and humans in urban, peri-urban and rural areas, between 2012 and 2014. For this study, the amastigotes present in these insects were detected by histochemical and PCR techniques. Positive gene amplification for Leishmania was found in two horseflies of the species Tabanus importunus collected in the environment, and amastigote forms of Leishmania spp., as well as erythrocytes and leukocytes, were histochemically detected in one of that insect. The other analyzed insects were not positive by PCR our by direct parasitological examination. Only horseflies captured in urban and peri-urban areas were positive. During the collection, no phlebotomine sand flies were captured in rural areas far from the city limits. It can be concluded that the discovery of horseflies positive for Leishmania spp. in urban and peri-urban areas indicates the likelihood that urban areas and their surroundings provide vector parasites with an environment suitable for the spread and consequent perpetuation of the biological cycle of this protozoan.

  1. Molecular cloning and functional expression of the first two specific insect myosuppressin receptors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Egerod, Kristoffer; Reynisson, Eyjólfur; Hauser, Frank

    2003-01-01

    insect visceral muscles. Other tested Drosophila neuropeptides did not activate the two receptors. In addition to the two Drosophila myosuppressin receptors, we identified a sequence in the genomic database from the malaria mosquito Anopheles gambiae that also very likely codes for a myosuppressin...

  2. Cryptic extended brood care in the facultatively eusocial sweat bee Megalopta genalis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quiñones, A E; Wcislo, W T

    As a result of different brood cell provisioning strategies, nest-making insects may differ in the extent to which adults regularly provide extended parental care to their brood beyond nest defense. Mass-provisioning species cache the entire food supply needed for larval development prior to the oviposition and typically seal the brood cell. It is usually assumed that there is no regular contact between the adult(s) and brood. Here, we show that the bee, Megalopta genalis , expresses a form of cryptic brood care, which would not be observed during normal development. Following experimental injections of different provisioning materials into brood cells, foundresses reopened manipulated cells and the brood were aborted in some cases, implying that the foundresses assessed conditions within the cells. In aborted cells, foundresses sometimes laid a second egg after first removing dead larvae, previously stored pollen and contaminants. Our results show that hygienic brood care can be cryptic and hence may be more widespread than previously believed, lending support to the hypothesis that extended parental care is a preadaptation toward eusociality.

  3. Specialized odorant receptors in social insects that detect cuticular hydrocarbon cues and candidate pheromones.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pask, Gregory M; Slone, Jesse D; Millar, Jocelyn G; Das, Prithwiraj; Moreira, Jardel A; Zhou, Xiaofan; Bello, Jan; Berger, Shelley L; Bonasio, Roberto; Desplan, Claude; Reinberg, Danny; Liebig, Jürgen; Zwiebel, Laurence J; Ray, Anandasankar

    2017-08-17

    Eusocial insects use cuticular hydrocarbons as components of pheromones that mediate social behaviours, such as caste and nestmate recognition, and regulation of reproduction. In ants such as Harpegnathos saltator, the queen produces a pheromone which suppresses the development of workers' ovaries and if she is removed, workers can transition to a reproductive state known as gamergate. Here we functionally characterize a subfamily of odorant receptors (Ors) with a nine-exon gene structure that have undergone a massive expansion in ants and other eusocial insects. We deorphanize 22 representative members and find they can detect cuticular hydrocarbons from different ant castes, with one (HsOr263) that responds strongly to gamergate extract and a candidate queen pheromone component. After systematic testing with a diverse panel of hydrocarbons, we find that most Harpegnathos saltator Ors are narrowly tuned, suggesting that several receptors must contribute to detection and discrimination of different cuticular hydrocarbons important in mediating eusocial behaviour.Cuticular hydrocarbons (CHC) mediate the interactions between individuals in eusocial insects, but the sensory receptors for CHCs are unclear. Here the authors show that in ants such as H. saltator, the 9-exon subfamily of odorant receptors (HsOrs) responds to CHCs, and ectopic expression of HsOrs in Drosophila neurons imparts responsiveness to CHCs.

  4. The evolutionary transition from subsocial to eusocial behaviour in Dictyoptera: phylogenetic evidence for modification of the "shift-in-dependent-care" hypothesis with a new subsocial cockroach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pellens, Roseli; D'Haese, Cyrille A; Bellés, Xavier; Piulachs, Maria-Dolors; Legendre, Frédéric; Wheeler, Ward C; Grandcolas, Philippe

    2007-05-01

    Cockroaches have always been used to understand the first steps of social evolution in termites because they are close relatives with less complex and integrated social behaviour. Termites are all eusocial and ingroup comparative analysis would be useless to infer the origin of their social behaviour. The cockroach genus Cryptocercus was used as a so-called "prototermite" model because it shows key-attributes similar to the termites (except Termitidae): wood-feeding, intestinal flagellates and subsocial behaviour. In spite of these comparisons between this subsocial cockroach and eusocial termites, the early and remote origin of eusocial behaviour in termites is not well understood yet and the study of other relevant "prototermite" models is however needed. A molecular phylogenetic analysis was carried out to validate a new "prototermite" model, Parasphaeria boleiriana which shows a peculiar combination of these key-attributes. It shows that these attributes of Parasphaeria boleiriana have an independent origin from those of other wood-eating cockroaches and termites. The case of P. boleiriana suggests that a short brood care was selected for with life on an ephemeral wood resource, even with the need for transmission of flagellates. These new phylogenetic insights modify evolutionary hypotheses, contradicting the assumption made with Cryptocercus model that a long brood care is necessary for cooperation between broods in the "shift-in-dependent-care" hypothesis. An ephemeral wood resource is suggested to prompt generation overlap and the evolution of cooperation, even if brood care is shortened.

  5. Insect barcode information system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pratheepa, Maria; Jalali, Sushil Kumar; Arokiaraj, Robinson Silvester; Venkatesan, Thiruvengadam; Nagesh, Mandadi; Panda, Madhusmita; Pattar, Sharath

    2014-01-01

    Insect Barcode Information System called as Insect Barcode Informática (IBIn) is an online database resource developed by the National Bureau of Agriculturally Important Insects, Bangalore. This database provides acquisition, storage, analysis and publication of DNA barcode records of agriculturally important insects, for researchers specifically in India and other countries. It bridges a gap in bioinformatics by integrating molecular, morphological and distribution details of agriculturally important insects. IBIn was developed using PHP/My SQL by using relational database management concept. This database is based on the client- server architecture, where many clients can access data simultaneously. IBIn is freely available on-line and is user-friendly. IBIn allows the registered users to input new information, search and view information related to DNA barcode of agriculturally important insects.This paper provides a current status of insect barcode in India and brief introduction about the database IBIn. http://www.nabg-nbaii.res.in/barcode.

  6. The evolution of male traits in social insects

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Boomsma, Jacobus J; Baer, Boris; Heinze, Jürgen

    2005-01-01

    Pair formation in social insects mostly happens early in adult life and away from the social colony context, which precludes promiscuity in the usual sense. Termite males have continuous sperm production, but males of social Hymenoptera have fixed complements of sperm, except for a few species...... that mate before female dispersal and show male-fighting and lifelong sperm production. We develop an evolutionary framework for testing sexual selection and sperm competition theory across the advanced eusocial insects (ants, wasps, bees, termites) and highlight two areas related to premating sexual...

  7. Ecology and Evolution of Communication in Social Insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leonhardt, Sara Diana; Menzel, Florian; Nehring, Volker; Schmitt, Thomas

    2016-03-10

    Insect life strategies comprise all levels of sociality from solitary to eusocial, in which individuals form persistent groups and divide labor. With increasing social complexity, the need to communicate a greater diversity of messages arose to coordinate division of labor, group cohesion, and concerted actions. Here we summarize the knowledge on prominent messages in social insects that inform about reproduction, group membership, resource locations, and threats and discuss potential evolutionary trajectories of each message in the context of social complexity. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Cyanide detoxification in an insect herbivore: Molecular identification of β-cyanoalanine synthases from Pieris rapae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Ohlen, Maike; Herfurth, Anna-Maria; Kerbstadt, Henrike; Wittstock, Ute

    2016-03-01

    Cyanogenic compounds occur widely in the plant kingdom. Therefore, many herbivores are adapted to the presence of these compounds in their diet by either avoiding cyanide release or by efficient cyanide detoxification mechanisms. The mechanisms of adaptation are not fully understood. Larvae of Pieris rapae (Lepidoptera: Pieridae) are specialist herbivores on glucosinolate-containing plants. They are exposed to cyanide during metabolism of phenylacetonitrile, a product of benzylglucosinolate breakdown catalyzed by plant myrosinases and larval nitrile-specifier protein (NSP) in the gut. Cyanide is metabolized to β-cyanoalanine and thiocyanate in the larvae. Here, we demonstrate that larvae of P. rapae possess β-cyanoalanine activity in their gut. We have identified three gut-expressed cDNAs designated PrBSAS1-PrBSAS3 which encode proteins with similarity to β-substituted alanine synthases (BSAS). Characterization of recombinant PrBSAS1-PrBSAS3 shows that they possess β-cyanoalanine activity. In phylogenetic trees, PrBSAS1-PrBSAS3, the first characterized insect BSAS, group together with a characterized mite β-cyanoalanine synthase and bacterial enzymes indicating a similar evolutionary history. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  9. Climate Warming May Threaten Reproductive Diapause of a Highly Eusocial Bee.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dos Santos, Charles Fernando; Acosta, André Luis; Nunes-Silva, Patrícia; Saraiva, Antonio Mauro; Blochtein, Betina

    2015-08-01

    Climate changes are predicted to affect the diapause of many insect species around the world adversely. In this context, bees are of interest due to their pollination services. In southern Brazil, the highly eusocial bee species Plebeia droryana (Friese) (Hymenoptera: Apidae: Meliponini) exhibits reproductive diapause in response to the region's rigorous winters. That diapause is characterized by a temporary interruption in brood cell construction by nurse bees and egg-laying by the queen, regardless of other internal tasks underway in the nests. In this study, we evaluated whether P. droryana enter diapause under experimental conditions. P. droryana colonies were kept in a germination chamber, and the temperature was progressively reduced from 20°C over a period of a few weeks until diapause was detected. Additionally, we also estimated the environmental conditions in the actual geographic range occupied by P. droryana and modeled it for predicted changes in climate up to the year 2080. Our findings indicate that P. droryana enter diapause between 10 and 8°C. We also found that the current minimum winter temperature (10.1°C, median) in the distributional range of P. droryana will probably rise (13.4°C, median). Thus, if our experimental data are somewhat accurate, ∼36% of the southern Brazilian P. droryana population may be active during the expected milder winter months in 2080. In this scenario, there may be a larger demand for pollen and nectar for that bee species. Greater conservation efforts will be required to preserve P. droryana populations and keep them viable in the coming decades. © The Authors 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  10. Molecular mechanisms of thermal resistance of the insect trypanosomatid Crithidia thermophilal

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Ishemgulova, A.; Butenko, A.; Kortišová, L.; Boucinha, C.; Grybchuk-Ieremenko, A.; Morelli, K.A.; Tesařová, Martina; Kraeva, N.; Grybchuk, D.; Pánek, T.; Flegontov, P.; Lukeš, Julius; Votýpka, Jan; Pavan, M. G.; Opperdoes, F. R.; Spodareva, V.; d'Avila-Levy, C.M.; Kostygov, A.Y.; Yurchenko, V.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 12, č. 3 (2017), č. článku e0174165. E-ISSN 1932-6203 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA14-23986S; GA ČR(CZ) GA16-18699S Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : subunit ribosomal-rna * sp-n * monoxenous trypanosomatids * neotropical heteroptera * mitochondrial hsp70 * paraflagellar rod * genus wallaceina * protein import * costa-rica * parasites Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology OBOR OECD: Biochemistry and molecular biology Impact factor: 2.806, year: 2016

  11. Variable virulence among isolates of Ascosphaera apis: testing the parasite-pathogen hypothesis for the evolution of polyandry in social insects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, G. M.; McGee, P. A.; Oldroyd, B. P.

    2013-03-01

    The queens of many eusocial insect species are polyandrous. The evolution of polyandry from ancestral monoandry is intriguing because polyandry undermines the kin-selected benefits of high intracolonial relatedness that are understood to have been central to the evolution of eusociality. An accumulating body of evidence suggests that polyandry evolved from monoandry in part because genetically diverse colonies better resist infection by pathogens. However, a core assumption of the "parasite-pathogen hypothesis", that there is variation in virulence among strains of pathogens, remains largely untested in vivo. Here, we demonstrate variation in virulence among isolates of Ascosphaera apis, the causative organism of chalkbrood disease in its honey bee ( Apis mellifera) host. More importantly, we show a pathogen-host genotypic interaction for resistance and pathogenicity. Our findings therefore support the parasite-parasite hypothesis as a factor in the evolution of polyandry among eusocial insects.

  12. Molecular signatures in Arabidopsis thaliana in response to insect attack and bacterial infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barah, Pankaj; Winge, Per; Kusnierczyk, Anna; Tran, Diem Hong; Bones, Atle M

    2013-01-01

    Under the threat of global climatic change and food shortages, it is essential to take the initiative to obtain a comprehensive understanding of common and specific defence mechanisms existing in plant systems for protection against different types of biotic invaders. We have implemented an integrated approach to analyse the overall transcriptomic reprogramming and systems-level defence responses in the model plant species Arabidopsis thaliana (A. thaliana henceforth) during insect Brevicoryne brassicae (B. brassicae henceforth) and bacterial Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato strain DC3000 (P. syringae henceforth) attacks. The main aim of this study was to identify the attacker-specific and general defence response signatures in A. thaliana when attacked by phloem-feeding aphids or pathogenic bacteria. The obtained annotated networks of differentially expressed transcripts indicated that members of transcription factor families, such as WRKY, MYB, ERF, BHLH and bZIP, could be crucial for stress-specific defence regulation in Arabidopsis during aphid and P. syringae attack. The defence response pathways, signalling pathways and metabolic processes associated with aphid attack and P. syringae infection partially overlapped. Components of several important biosynthesis and signalling pathways, such as salicylic acid (SA), jasmonic acid (JA), ethylene (ET) and glucosinolates, were differentially affected during the two the treatments. Several stress-regulated transcription factors were known to be associated with stress-inducible microRNAs. The differentially regulated gene sets included many signature transcription factors, and our co-expression analysis showed that they were also strongly co-expressed during 69 other biotic stress experiments. Defence responses and functional networks that were unique and specific to aphid or P. syringae stresses were identified. Furthermore, our analysis revealed a probable link between biotic stress and microRNAs in Arabidopsis and

  13. A molecular phylogeny of the stingless bee genus Melipona (Hymenoptera: Apidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramírez, Santiago R; Nieh, James C; Quental, Tiago B; Roubik, David W; Imperatriz-Fonseca, Vera L; Pierce, Naomi E

    2010-08-01

    Stingless bees (Meliponini) constitute a diverse group of highly eusocial insects that occur throughout tropical regions around the world. The meliponine genus Melipona is restricted to the New World tropics and has over 50 described species. Melipona, like Apis, possesses the remarkable ability to use representational communication to indicate the location of foraging patches. Although Melipona has been the subject of numerous behavioral, ecological, and genetic studies, the evolutionary history of this genus remains largely unexplored. Here, we implement a multigene phylogenetic approach based on nuclear, mitochondrial, and ribosomal loci, coupled with molecular clock methods, to elucidate the phylogenetic relationships and antiquity of subgenera and species of Melipona. Our phylogenetic analysis resolves the relationship among subgenera and tends to agree with morphology-based classification hypotheses. Our molecular clock analysis indicates that the genus Melipona shared a most recent common ancestor at least approximately 14-17 million years (My) ago. These results provide the groundwork for future comparative analyses aimed at understanding the evolution of complex communication mechanisms in eusocial Apidae. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Methyl farnesoate epoxidase (mfe) gene expression and juvenile hormone titers in the life cycle of a highly eusocial stingless bee, Melipona scutellaris.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardoso-Júnior, Carlos Antônio Mendes; Silva, Renato Pereira; Borges, Naiara Araújo; de Carvalho, Washington João; Walter, S Leal; Simões, Zilá Luz Paulino; Bitondi, Marcia Maria Gentile; Ueira Vieira, Carlos; Bonetti, Ana Maria; Hartfelder, Klaus

    2017-08-01

    In social insects, juvenile hormone (JH) has acquired novel functions related to caste determination and division of labor among workers, and this is best evidenced in the honey bee. In contrast to honey bees, stingless bees are a much more diverse group of highly eusocial bees, and the genus Melipona has long called special attention due to a proposed genetic mechanism of caste determination. Here, we examined methyl farnesoate epoxidase (mfe) gene expression, encoding an enzyme relevant for the final step in JH biosynthesis, and measured the hemolymph JH titers for all life cycle stages of Melipona scutellaris queens and workers. We confirmed that mfe is exclusively expressed in the corpora allata. The JH titer is high in the second larval instar, drops in the third, and rises again as the larvae enter metamorphosis. During the pupal stage, mfe expression is initialy elevated, but then gradually drops to low levels before adult emergence. No variation was, however, seen in the JH titer. In adult virgin queens, mfe expression and the JH titer are significantly elevated, possibly associated with their reproductive potential. For workers we found that JH titers are lower in foragers than in nurse bees, while mfe expression did not differ. Stingless bees are, thus, distinct from honey bee workers, suggesting that they have maintained the ancestral gonadotropic function for JH. Hence, the physiological circuitries underlying a highly eusocial life style may be variable, even within a monophyletic clade such as the corbiculate bees. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Molecular signatures in Arabidopsis thaliana in response to insect attack and bacterial infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pankaj Barah

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Under the threat of global climatic change and food shortages, it is essential to take the initiative to obtain a comprehensive understanding of common and specific defence mechanisms existing in plant systems for protection against different types of biotic invaders. We have implemented an integrated approach to analyse the overall transcriptomic reprogramming and systems-level defence responses in the model plant species Arabidopsis thaliana (A. thaliana henceforth during insect Brevicoryne brassicae (B. brassicae henceforth and bacterial Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato strain DC3000 (P. syringae henceforth attacks. The main aim of this study was to identify the attacker-specific and general defence response signatures in A. thaliana when attacked by phloem-feeding aphids or pathogenic bacteria. RESULTS: The obtained annotated networks of differentially expressed transcripts indicated that members of transcription factor families, such as WRKY, MYB, ERF, BHLH and bZIP, could be crucial for stress-specific defence regulation in Arabidopsis during aphid and P. syringae attack. The defence response pathways, signalling pathways and metabolic processes associated with aphid attack and P. syringae infection partially overlapped. Components of several important biosynthesis and signalling pathways, such as salicylic acid (SA, jasmonic acid (JA, ethylene (ET and glucosinolates, were differentially affected during the two the treatments. Several stress-regulated transcription factors were known to be associated with stress-inducible microRNAs. The differentially regulated gene sets included many signature transcription factors, and our co-expression analysis showed that they were also strongly co-expressed during 69 other biotic stress experiments. CONCLUSIONS: Defence responses and functional networks that were unique and specific to aphid or P. syringae stresses were identified. Furthermore, our analysis revealed a probable link between

  16. Arms race between selfishness and policing: two-trait quantitative genetic model for caste fate conflict in eusocial Hymenoptera.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dobata, Shigeto

    2012-12-01

    Policing against selfishness is now regarded as the main force maintaining cooperation, by reducing costly conflict in complex social systems. Although policing has been studied extensively in social insect colonies, its coevolution against selfishness has not been fully captured by previous theories. In this study, I developed a two-trait quantitative genetic model of the conflict between selfish immature females (usually larvae) and policing workers in eusocial Hymenoptera over the immatures' propensity to develop into new queens. This model allows for the analysis of coevolution between genomes expressed in immatures and workers that collectively determine the immatures' queen caste fate. The main prediction of the model is that a higher level of polyandry leads to a smaller fraction of queens produced among new females through caste fate policing. The other main prediction of the present model is that, as a result of arms race, caste fate policing by workers coevolves with exaggerated selfishness of the immatures achieving maximum potential to develop into queens. Moreover, the model can incorporate genetic correlation between traits, which has been largely unexplored in social evolution theory. This study highlights the importance of understanding social traits as influenced by the coevolution of conflicting genomes. © 2012 The Author. Evolution© 2012 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  17. Molecular evolution of the odorant and gustatory receptor genes in lepidopteran insects: implications for their adaptation and speciation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Engsontia, Patamarerk; Sangket, Unitsa; Chotigeat, Wilaiwan; Satasook, Chutamas

    2014-08-01

    Lepidoptera (comprised of butterflies and moths) is one of the largest groups of insects, including more than 160,000 described species. Chemoreception plays important roles in the adaptation of these species to a wide range of niches, e.g., plant hosts, egg-laying sites, and mates. This study investigated the molecular evolution of the lepidopteran odorant (Or) and gustatory receptor (Gr) genes using recently identified genes from Bombyx mori, Danaus plexippus, Heliconius melpomene, Plutella xylostella, Heliothis virescens, Manduca sexta, Cydia pomonella, and Spodoptera littoralis. A limited number of cases of large lineage-specific gene expansion are observed (except in the P. xylostella lineage), possibly due to selection against tandem gene duplication. There has been strong purifying selection during the evolution of both lepidopteran odorant and gustatory genes, as shown by the low ω values estimated through CodeML analysis, ranging from 0.0093 to 0.3926. However, purifying selection has been relaxed on some amino acid sites in these receptors, leading to sequence divergence, which is a precursor of positive selection on these sequences. Signatures of positive selection were detected only in a few loci from the lineage-specific analysis. Estimation of gene gains and losses suggests that the common ancestor of the Lepidoptera had fewer Or genes compared to extant species and an even more reduced number of Gr genes, particularly within the bitter receptor clade. Multiple gene gains and a few gene losses occurred during the evolution of Lepidoptera. Gene family expansion may be associated with the adaptation of lepidopteran species to plant hosts, especially after angiosperm radiation. Phylogenetic analysis of the moth sex pheromone receptor genes suggested that chromosomal translocations have occurred several times. New sex pheromone receptors have arisen through tandem gene duplication. Positive selection was detected at some amino acid sites predicted to be

  18. Marine insects

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Cheng, Lanna

    1976-01-01

    .... Not only are true insects, such as the Collembola and insect parasites of marine birds and mammals, considered, but also other kinds of intertidal air-breathing arthropods, notably spiders, scorpions...

  19. Insect immunology and hematopoiesis

    OpenAIRE

    Hillyer, Julián F.

    2015-01-01

    Insects combat infection by mounting powerful immune responses that are mediated by hemocytes, the fat body, the midgut, the salivary glands and other tissues. Foreign organisms that have entered the body of an insect are recognized by the immune system when pathogen-associated molecular patterns bind host-derived pattern recognition receptors. This, in turn, activates immune signaling pathways that amplify the immune response, induce the production of factors with antimicrobial activity, and...

  20. Edible Insects

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huis, van A.; Dunkel, F.V.

    2016-01-01

    The interest in insects as human food in the Western world is increasingly considered as a viable alternative to other protein sources. In tropical countries it is common practice and about 2000 insect species are eaten. Insects emit low levels of greenhouse gases, need little water, and require

  1. Consuming insects

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Roos, N.; Huis, van A.

    2017-01-01

    How healthy are insects? This is a highly relevant question in view of the global interest in the potential of insects as a sustainable food source in food systems and diets. Edible insects, like other foods, can provide nutrients and dietary energy to meet the requirements of the human body as a

  2. Queen pheromones: The chemical crown governing insect social life

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Holman, Luke

    2010-01-01

    Group-living species produce signals that alter the behavior and even the physiology of their social partners. Social insects possess especially sophisticated chemical communication systems that govern every aspect of colony life, including the defining feature of eusociality: reproductive division...... of labor. Current evidence hints at the central importance of queen pheromones, but progress has been hindered by the fact that such pheromones have only been isolated in honeybees. In a pair of papers on the ant Lasius niger, we identified and investigated a queen pheromone regulating worker sterility...... with other studies, these results indicate that queen pheromones are honest signals of quality that simultaneously regulate multiple social behaviors....

  3. Insights into the role of age and social interactions on the sexual attractiveness of queens in an eusocial bee, Melipona flavolineata (Apidae, Meliponini)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veiga, Jamille Costa; Menezes, Cristiano; Contrera, Felipe Andrés León

    2017-04-01

    The attraction of sexual partners is a vital necessity among insects, and it involves conflict of interests and complex communication systems among male and female. In this study, we investigated the developing of sexual attractiveness in virgin queens (i.e., gynes) of Melipona flavolineata, an eusocial stingless bee. We followed the development of sexual attractiveness in 64 gynes, belonging to seven age classes (0, 3, 6, 9, 15, 18 days post-emergence), and we also evaluated the effect of different social interactions (such as competition between queens and interactions with workers) on the development of attractiveness in other 60 gynes. We used the number of males that tried to mate with a focal gyne as a representative variable of its sexual attractiveness. During the essays, each gyne was individually presented to 10 sexually mature males, and during 3 min, we counted the number of males that everted their genitalia in response to the presence of a gyne. Here, we show that M. flavolineata gynes are capable to (i) maintain their sexual attractiveness for long periods through adult life, (ii) they need a minimum social interaction to trigger the development of sexual attractiveness, and (iii) that gynes express this trait only within a social context. We conclude that the effective occurrence of matings is conditional on potential social interactions that gynes experienced before taking the nuptial flight, when they are still in the nest. These findings bring insights into the factors determining reproductive success in social insects.

  4. Insect Detectives

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    2002-08-01

    Aug 1, 2002 ... all life stages of insects from and around the corpse. The collected specimens are subjected to further analysis either in the field itself or in the laboratory. A forensic entomologist has three main objectives in his mind while analyzing the insect data: determination of place, time and mode of death, each of.

  5. Insect Keepers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Virginia J.; Chessin, Debby A.; Theobald, Becky

    2010-01-01

    Insects are fascinating creatures--especially when you and your students get up close and personal with them! To that end, the authors facilitated an inquiry-based investigation with an emphasis on identification of the different types of insects found in the school yard, their characteristics, their habitat, and what they eat, while engaging the…

  6. Edible insects

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huis, van A.

    2017-01-01

    Is it an impossible task to convince consumers to eat insects? This does not only apply to western consumers who are less familiar with this food habit than consumers in tropical countries. In the tropics too, many people do not consume insects, even though they are easier to collect as food than

  7. Eating insects

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tan, Hui Shan Grace

    2017-01-01

    In recent years, edible insects have gained global attention due to their nutritional and environmental advantages over conventional meat. While numerous species of edible insects are enjoyed in various cultures around the world, most Western consumers react with disgust and aversion towards

  8. Volatile emissions from an epiphytic fungus are semiochemicals for eusocial wasps.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Thomas Seth; Boundy-Mills, Kyria; Landolt, Peter J

    2012-11-01

    Microbes are ubiquitous on plant surfaces. However, interactions between epiphytic microbes and arthropods are rarely considered as a factor that affects arthropod behaviors. Here, volatile emissions from an epiphytic fungus were investigated as semiochemical attractants for two eusocial wasps. The fungus Aureobasidium pullulans was isolated from apples, and the volatile compounds emitted by fungal colonies were quantified. The attractiveness of fungal colonies and fungal volatiles to social wasps (Vespula spp.) were experimentally tested in the field. Three important findings emerged: (1) traps baited with A. pullulans caught 2750 % more wasps on average than unbaited control traps; (2) the major headspace volatiles emitted by A. pullulans were 2-methyl-1-butanol, 3-methyl-1-butanol, and 2-phenylethyl alcohol; and (3) a synthetic blend of fungal volatiles attracted 4,933 % more wasps on average than unbaited controls. Wasps were most attracted to 2-methyl-1-butanol. The primary wasp species attracted to fungal volatiles were the western yellowjacket (Vespula pensylvanica) and the German yellowjacket (V. germanica), and both species externally vectored A. pullulans. This is the first study to link microbial volatile emissions with eusocial wasp behaviors, and these experiments indicate that volatile compounds emitted by an epiphytic fungus can be responsible for wasp attraction. This work implicates epiphytic microbes as important components in the community ecology of some eusocial hymenopterans, and fungal emissions may signal suitable nutrient sources to foraging wasps. Our experiments are suggestive of a potential symbiosis, but additional studies are needed to determine if eusocial wasp-fungal associations are widespread, and whether these associations are incidental, facultative, or obligate.

  9. Insect immunology and hematopoiesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hillyer, Julián F

    2016-05-01

    Insects combat infection by mounting powerful immune responses that are mediated by hemocytes, the fat body, the midgut, the salivary glands and other tissues. Foreign organisms that have entered the body of an insect are recognized by the immune system when pathogen-associated molecular patterns bind host-derived pattern recognition receptors. This, in turn, activates immune signaling pathways that amplify the immune response, induce the production of factors with antimicrobial activity, and activate effector pathways. Among the immune signaling pathways are the Toll, Imd, Jak/Stat, JNK, and insulin pathways. Activation of these and other pathways leads to pathogen killing via phagocytosis, melanization, cellular encapsulation, nodulation, lysis, RNAi-mediated virus destruction, autophagy and apoptosis. This review details these and other aspects of immunity in insects, and discusses how the immune and circulatory systems have co-adapted to combat infection, how hemocyte replication and differentiation takes place (hematopoiesis), how an infection prepares an insect for a subsequent infection (immune priming), how environmental factors such as temperature and the age of the insect impact the immune response, and how social immunity protects entire groups. Finally, this review highlights some underexplored areas in the field of insect immunobiology. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Molecular cloning of alpha-amylases from cotton boll weevil, Anthonomus grandis and structural relations to plant inhibitors: an approach to insect resistance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliveira-Neto, Osmundo B; Batista, João A N; Rigden, Daniel J; Franco, Octávio L; Falcão, Rosana; Fragoso, Rodrigo R; Mello, Luciane V; dos Santos, Roseane C; Grossi-de-Sá, Maria F

    2003-01-01

    Anthonomus grandis, the cotton boll weevil, causes severe cotton crop losses in North and South America. Here we demonstrate the presence of starch in the cotton pollen grains and young ovules that are the main A. grandis food source. We further demonstrate the presence of alpha-amylase activity, an essential enzyme of carbohydrate metabolism for many crop pests, in A. grandis midgut. Two alpha-amylase cDNAs from A. grandis larvae were isolated using RT-PCR followed by 5' and 3' RACE techniques. These encode proteins with predicted molecular masses of 50.8 and 52.7kDa, respectively, which share 58% amino acid identity. Expression of both genes is induced upon feeding and concentrated in the midgut of adult insects. Several alpha-amylase inhibitors from plants were assayed against A. grandis alpha-amylases but, unexpectedly, only the BIII inhibitor from rye kernels proved highly effective, with inhibitors generally active against other insect amylases lacking effect. Structural modeling of Amylag1 and Amylag2 showed that different factors seem to be responsible for the lack of effect of 0.19 and alpha-AI1 inhibitors on A. grandis alpha-amylase activity. This work suggests that genetic engineering of cotton to express alpha-amylase inhibitors may offer a novel route to A. grandis resistance.

  11. Marketing insects

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schiemer, Carolin; Halloran, Afton Marina Szasz; Jespersen, Kristjan

    2018-01-01

    In entering Western markets, edible insects are typically framed as the ‘solution’ to a number of challenges caused by unsustainable global food systems, such as climate change and global health issues. In addition, some media outlets also frame insects as the next ‘superfood’. Superfood is a mar......In entering Western markets, edible insects are typically framed as the ‘solution’ to a number of challenges caused by unsustainable global food systems, such as climate change and global health issues. In addition, some media outlets also frame insects as the next ‘superfood’. Superfood...... is a marketing term for nutrient-packed foods, which are successfully promoted to Western consumers with the promises of health, well-being and beauty. However, the increase in the demand in the West is argued to cause negative social, environmental, economic and cultural consequences – externalities – felt...

  12. Insect Data

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Records of past temperature and environment derived from beetle and other insect fossils. Parameter keywords describe what was measured in this data set. Additional...

  13. Insect Detectives

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    2002-08-01

    Aug 1, 2002 ... He writes popular science articles in ... science, English poetry is his area of ... A fascinating branch of insect science (ento- ... Methods in Forensic Entomology .... bullet wound to the right temple, and a substantial pooling of.

  14. Eating insects

    OpenAIRE

    Tan, Hui Shan Grace

    2017-01-01

    In recent years, edible insects have gained global attention due to their nutritional and environmental advantages over conventional meat. While numerous species of edible insects are enjoyed in various cultures around the world, most Western consumers react with disgust and aversion towards eating creatures that are not regarded as food. The low consumer acceptance of this culturally inappropriate food is currently considered to be one of the key barriers to attaining the benefits of this po...

  15. Mitochondrial tRNA gene translocations in highly eusocial bees

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniela Silvestre

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available Mitochondrial gene rearrangement events, especially involving tRNA genes, have been described more frequently as more complete mitochondrial genome sequences are becoming available. In the present work, we analyzed mitochondrial tRNA gene rearrangements between two bee species belonging to the tribes Apini and Meliponini within the "corbiculate Apidae". Eleven tRNA genes are in different genome positions or strands. The molecular events responsible for each translocation are explained. Considering the high number of rearrangements observed, the data presented here contradict the general rule of high gene order conservation among closely related organisms, and also represent a powerful molecular tool to help solve questions about phylogeny and evolution in bees.

  16. Molecular cloning and expression profile of an ATP-binding cassette (ABC) transporter gene from the hemipteran insect Nilaparvata lugens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zha, W J; Li, S H; Zhou, L; Chen, Z J; Liu, K; Yang, G C; Hu, G; He, G C; You, A Q

    2015-03-30

    The ATP-binding cassette (ABC) transporters belong to a large superfamily of proteins that have important physiological functions in all living organisms. In insects, ABC transporters have important functions in the transport of molecules, and are also involved in insecticide resistance, metabolism, and development. In this study, the Nilaparvata lugens Stal (Hemiptera: Delphacidae) ABCG (NlABCG) gene was identified and characterized. The complete mRNA sequence of NlABCG was 2608-bp long, with an open reading frame of 2064 bp encoding a protein comprised of 687 amino acids. The conserved regions include three N-glycosylation and 34 phosphorylation sites, as well as seven transmembrane domains. The amino acid identity with the closely related species Acyrthosiphon pisum was 42.8%. Developmental expression analysis using quantitative real-time reverse transcriptase PCR suggested that the NlABCG transcript was expressed at all developmental stages of N. lugens. The lowest expression of NlABCG was in the 1st instar, and levels increased with larval growth. The transcript profiles of NlABCG were analyzed in various tissues from a 5th instar nymph, and the highest expression was observed in the midgut. These results suggest that the sequence, characteristics, and expression of NlABCG are highly conserved, and basic information is provided for its functional analysis.

  17. Reproduction is associated with a tissue-dependent reduction of oxidative stress in eusocial female Damaraland mole-rats (Fukomys damarensis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christina M Schmidt

    Full Text Available Oxidative stress has been implicated as both a physiological cost of reproduction and a driving force on an animal's lifespan. Since increased reproductive effort is generally linked with a reduction in survival, it has been proposed that oxidative stress may influence this relationship. Support for this hypothesis is inconsistent, but this may, in part, be due to the type of tissues that have been analyzed. In Damaraland mole-rats the sole reproducing female in the colony is also the longest lived. Therefore, if oxidative stress does impact the trade-off between reproduction and survival in general, this species may possess some form of enhanced defense. We assessed this relationship by comparing markers of oxidative damage (malondialdehyde, MDA; protein carbonyls, PC and antioxidants (total antioxidant capacity, TAC; superoxide dismutase, SOD in various tissues including plasma, erythrocytes, heart, liver, kidney and skeletal muscle between wild-caught reproductive and non-reproductive female Damaraland mole-rats. Reproductive females exhibited significantly lower levels of PC across all tissues, and lower levels of MDA in heart, kidney and liver relative to non-reproductive females. Levels of TAC and SOD did not differ significantly according to reproductive state. The reduction in oxidative damage in breeding females may be attributable to the unusual social structure of this species, as similar relationships have been observed between reproductive and non-reproductive eusocial insects.

  18. Characterization of 12 polymorphic microsatellite markers for a facultatively eusocial sweat bee (Megalopta genalis).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kapheim, Karen M; Pollinger, John P; Wcislo, William T; Wayne, Robert K

    2009-11-01

    We developed a library of twelve polymorphic di- and tri-nucleotide microsatellite markers for Megalopta genalis, a facultatively eusocial sweat bee. We tested each locus in a panel of 23 unrelated females and found 7-20 alleles per locus. Observed and expected heterozygosities ranged from 0.65 to 0.96 and from 0.69 to 0.95 respectively. None of the loci deviated from Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium proportions or was found to be in gametic disequilibrium. © 2009 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  19. Consuming insects

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Roos, Nanna; van Huis, A.

    2017-01-01

    as a part of a varied diet. They also have the potential to provide bioactive compounds that have health benefits beyond simple nutritional values, as is the case for other food groups such as fruits and vegetables. Various recent studies have indicated such bioactivity in different insect species....... The enormous number of edible insect species may be a source of novel bioactive compounds with health benefits addressing global health challenges. However, any identified health benefits need to be confirmed in human studies or in standardised assays accepted in health research prior to making health claims....

  20. Insect Capital

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew Pilsch

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available In this note, Pilsch address William Gibson’s use of insect imagery in to trouble the common understanding of the novel Neuromancer, its commentary on corporate culture, and its relationship to a then-emergent posthumanism. Further, he concludes by suggesting that, for Gibson, the insect hive as an image for the corporate body shows that corporate culture is, in contrast to the banal image the term brings to mind, a set of nefarious cultural techniques derived for interfacing human bodies with the corporation’s native environment in the postmodern era: the abstractions of data.

  1. Towards mosquito sterile insect technique programmes: Exploring genetic, molecular, mechanical and behavioural methods of sex separation in mosquitoes

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Gilles, J. R. L.; Schetelig, M. F.; Scolari, F.; Marec, František; Capurro, M.L.; Franz, G.; Bourtzis, K.

    132S, č. 1 (2014), S178-S187 ISSN 0001-706X R&D Projects: GA ČR GA523/09/2106 Grant - others:Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschalft(DE) SCHE 1833/1 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : female elimination * vector control * genetic sexing strains (GSS) Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 2.270, year: 2014 http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0001706X13002209?via=ihub

  2. Molecular and morphological identification of  pistachio armored scale insects (Hemiptera: Diaspididae), with description of a new species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hosseininaveh, Fatemeh; Nozari, Jamasb; Kaydan, Mehmet Bora; Hosseininaveh, Vahid

    2016-12-01

    Members of the family Diaspididae (Hemiptera: Coccomorpha) can be devastating pests that suck parenchyma cell contents from crops and cause severe damage to pistachio trees (Pistacia vera L.). The current research collected and characterized diaspidid species from pistachio orchards in Kerman province, Iran, according to their morphological and molecular features. Lepidosaphes pistaciae Archangelskaya, Suturaspis davatchi (Balachowsky & Kaussari) and Melanaspis inopinata (Leonardi) are redescribed and a new species, Melanaspis pistaciae Hosseininaveh & Kaydan sp. n., is described. Phylogenetic trees based on molecular analysis of COI and 28S rDNA fragments placed all the species in separated clades and confirmed M. pistaciae as a new taxon which is concluded by morphological differences. Molecular analysis suggests non-monophyly of the populations of each species. Melanaspis pistaciae sp. n. has spread to most cultivated pistachio areas in Iran and has probably been misidentified as M. inopinata in the past. Further investigation of the biology of this species may lead to development of more effective approaches for controlling this pest.

  3. Active site characterization and molecular cloning of Tenebrio molitor midgut trehalase and comments on their insect homologs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gomez, Ana; Cardoso, Christiane; Genta, Fernando A; Terra, Walter R; Ferreira, Clélia

    2013-08-01

    The soluble midgut trehalase from Tenebrio molitor (TmTre1) was purified after several chromatographic steps, resulting in an enzyme with 58 kDa and pH optimum 5.3 (ionizing active groups in the free enzyme: pK(e1) = 3.8 ± 0.2 pK(e2) = 7.4 ± 0.2). The purified enzyme corresponds to the deduced amino acid sequence of a cloned cDNA (TmTre1-cDNA), because a single cDNA coding a soluble trehalase was found in the T. molitor midgut transcriptome. Furthermore, the mass of the protein predicted to be coded by TmTre1-cDNA agrees with that of the purified enzyme. TmTre1 has the essential catalytic groups Asp 315 and Glu 513 and the essential Arg residues R164, R217, R282. Carbodiimide inactivation of the purified enzyme at different pH values reveals an essential carboxyl group with pKa = 3.5 ± 0.3. Phenylglyoxal modified a single Arg residue with pKa = 7.5 ± 0.2, as observed in the soluble trehalase from Spodoptera frugiperda (SfTre1). Diethylpyrocarbonate modified a His residue that resulted in a less active enzyme with pK(e1) changed to 4.8 ± 0.2. In TmTre1 the modified His residue (putatively His 336) is more exposed than the His modified in SfTre1 (putatively His 210) and that affects the ionization of an Arg residue. The architecture of the active site of TmTre1 and SfTre1 is different, as shown by multiple inhibition analysis, the meaning of which demands further research. Trehalase sequences obtained from midgut transcriptomes (pyrosequencing and Illumina data) from 8 insects pertaining to 5 different orders were used in a cladogram, together with other representative sequences. The data suggest that the trehalase gene went duplication and divergence prior to the separation of the paraneopteran and holometabolan orders and that the soluble trehalase derived from the membrane-bound one by losing the C-terminal transmembrane loop. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Stinging Insect Matching Game

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... for Kids ▸ Stinging Insect Matching Game Share | Stinging Insect Matching Game Stinging insects can ruin summer fun for those who are ... the difference between the different kinds of stinging insects in order to keep your summer safe and ...

  5. Trading new neurons for status: Adult hippocampal neurogenesis in eusocial Damaraland mole-rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oosthuizen, M K; Amrein, I

    2016-06-02

    Diversity in social structures, from solitary to eusocial, is a prominent feature of subterranean African mole-rat species. Damaraland mole-rats are eusocial, they live in colonies that are characterized by a reproductive division of labor and a subdivision into castes based on physiology and behavior. Damaraland mole-rats are exceptionally long lived and reproductive animals show delayed aging compared to non-reproductive animals. In the present study, we described the hippocampal architecture and the rate of hippocampal neurogenesis of wild-derived, adult Damaraland mole-rats in relation to sex, relative age and social status or caste. Overall, Damaraland mole-rats were found to have a small hippocampus and low rates of neurogenesis. We found no correlation between neurogenesis and sex or relative age. Social status or caste was the most prominent modulator of neurogenesis. An inverse relationship between neurogenesis and social status was apparent, with queens displaying the lowest neurogenesis while the worker mole-rats had the most. As there is no natural progression from one caste to another, social status within a colony was relatively stable and is reflected in the level of neurogenesis. Our results correspond to those found in the naked mole-rat, and may reflect an evolutionary and environmentally conserved trait within social mole-rat species. Copyright © 2016 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Insects: A nutritional alternative

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dufour, P. A.

    1981-01-01

    Insects are considered as potential food sources in space. Types of insects consumed are discussed. Hazards of insect ingestion are considered. Insect reproduction, requirements, and raw materials conversion are discussed. Nutrition properties and composition of insects are considered. Preparation of insects as human food is discussed.

  7. Molecular signatures of nicotinoid-pathogen synergy in the termite gut.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruchira Sen

    Full Text Available Previous studies in lower termites revealed unexpected synergies between nicotinoid insecticides and fungal entomopathogens. The present study investigated molecular mechanisms of nicotinoid-pathogen synergy in the lower termite Reticulitermes flavipes, using the nicotinoid, imidacloprid, in combination with fungal and bacterial entomopathogens. Particular focus was placed on metatranscriptome composition and microbial dynamics in the symbiont-rich termite gut, which houses diverse mixes of protists and bacteria. cDNA microarrays containing a mix of host and protist symbiont oligonucleotides were used to simultaneously assess termite and protist gene expression. Five treatments were compared that included single challenges with sublethal doses of fungi (Metharizium anisopliae, bacteria (Serratia marcescens or imidacloprid, and dual challenges with fungi + imidacloprid or bacteria + imidacloprid. Our findings point towards protist dysbiosis and compromised social behavior, rather than suppression of stereotypical immune defense mechanisms, as the dominant factors underlying nicotinoid-pathogen synergy in termites. Also, greater impacts observed for the fungal pathogen than for the bacterial pathogen suggest that the rich bacterial symbiont community in the R. flavipes gut (>5000 species-level phylotypes exists in an ecological balance that effectively excludes exogenous bacterial pathogens. These findings significantly advance our understanding of antimicrobial defenses in this important eusocial insect group, as well as provide novel insights into how nicotinoids can exert deleterious effects on social insect colonies.

  8. A large-scale, higher-level, molecular phylogenetic study of the insect order Lepidoptera (moths and butterflies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jerome C Regier

    Full Text Available Higher-level relationships within the Lepidoptera, and particularly within the species-rich subclade Ditrysia, are generally not well understood, although recent studies have yielded progress. We present the most comprehensive molecular analysis of lepidopteran phylogeny to date, focusing on relationships among superfamilies.483 taxa spanning 115 of 124 families were sampled for 19 protein-coding nuclear genes, from which maximum likelihood tree estimates and bootstrap percentages were obtained using GARLI. Assessment of heuristic search effectiveness showed that better trees and higher bootstrap percentages probably remain to be discovered even after 1000 or more search replicates, but further search proved impractical even with grid computing. Other analyses explored the effects of sampling nonsynonymous change only versus partitioned and unpartitioned total nucleotide change; deletion of rogue taxa; and compositional heterogeneity. Relationships among the non-ditrysian lineages previously inferred from morphology were largely confirmed, plus some new ones, with strong support. Robust support was also found for divergences among non-apoditrysian lineages of Ditrysia, but only rarely so within Apoditrysia. Paraphyly for Tineoidea is strongly supported by analysis of nonsynonymous-only signal; conflicting, strong support for tineoid monophyly when synonymous signal was added back is shown to result from compositional heterogeneity.Support for among-superfamily relationships outside the Apoditrysia is now generally strong. Comparable support is mostly lacking within Apoditrysia, but dramatically increased bootstrap percentages for some nodes after rogue taxon removal, and concordance with other evidence, strongly suggest that our picture of apoditrysian phylogeny is approximately correct. This study highlights the challenge of finding optimal topologies when analyzing hundreds of taxa. It also shows that some nodes get strong support only when

  9. Insect Immunity: The Post-Genomic Era

    OpenAIRE

    Bangham, Jenny; Jiggins, Frank; Lemaitre, Bruno

    2006-01-01

    Insects have a complex and effective immune system, many components of which are conserved in mammals. But only in the last decade have the molecular mechanisms that regulate the insect immune response--and their relevance to general biology and human immunology--become fully appreciated. A meeting supported by the Centre National de la Récherche Scientifique (France) was held to bring together the whole spectrum of researchers working on insect immunity. The meeting addressed diverse aspects...

  10. Distribution of vasopressin in the brain of the eusocial naked mole-rat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosen, Greta J; De Vries, Geert J; Goldman, Sharry L; Goldman, Bruce D; Forger, Nancy G

    2007-02-20

    Naked mole-rats are eusocial rodents that live in large subterranean colonies in which one queen breeds with one to three males. All other animals are nonbreeding subordinates. The external features of male and female subordinates, including their genitalia, are remarkably monomorphic, as is their behavior. Because vasopressin (VP) is associated with social behaviors and sex differences in other species, its distribution in naked mole-rats was of interest. We used immunohistochemistry to examine VP in the brains of subordinate and breeding naked mole-rats of both sexes. As in other mammals, VP-immunoreactive (-ir) somata were found in the paraventricular (PVN) and supraoptic nuclei (SON) and VP-ir projections from these nuclei ran through the internal and external zone of the median eminence. However, naked mole-rats had very few VP-ir cells in the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (BST) and none in the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN); the extensive network of fine-caliber VP-ir fibers usually seen in projection sites of the BST and SCN were also absent. Equally unexpected was the abundance of large-caliber VP-ir fibers in the dorsomedial septum. VP immunoreactivity was generally similar in all groups, with the exception of VP-ir cell number in the dorsomedial hypothalamus (DMH). Breeders had a population of labeled cells in the DMH that was absent, or nearly absent, in subordinates. Future studies on the function of VP in these areas are needed to determine how the atypical distribution of VP immunoreactivity relates to eusociality and the unusual physiology of naked mole-rats.

  11. Insect Cell Culture

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oers, van M.M.; Lynn, D.E.

    2010-01-01

    Insect cell cultures are widely used in studies on insect cell physiology, developmental biology and microbial pathology. In particular, insect cell culture is an indispensable tool for the study of insect viruses. The first continuously growing insect cell cultures were established from

  12. Allometry of individual reproduction and defense in eusocial colonies: A comparative approach to trade-offs in social sponge-dwelling Synalpheus shrimps.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah L Bornbusch

    Full Text Available Eusociality, one of the most complex forms of social organization, is thought to have evolved in several animal clades in response to competition for resources and reproductive opportunities. Several species of snapping shrimp in the genus Synalpheus, the only marine organisms known to exhibit eusociality, form colonies characterized by high reproductive skew, and aggressive territoriality coupled with cooperative defense. In eusocial Synalpheus colonies, individual reproduction is limited to female 'queens', whose fecundity dictates colony growth. Given that individual reproduction and defense are both energetically costly, individual and colony fitness likely depend on the optimal allocation of resources by these reproducing individuals towards these potentially competing demands. Synalpheus species, however, display varying degrees of eusociality, suggesting that reproducing females have adopted different strategies for allocation among reproduction and defense. Here, we use structural equation modeling to characterize the relationships between the allometry of queen reproductive capacity and defensive weaponry, and colony size in six eusocial Synalpheus species, estimating trade-offs between reproduction and defense. We document strong trade-offs between mass of the fighting claw (defense and egg number (reproduction in queens from weakly eusocial species, while the trade-off is reduced or absent in those from strongly eusocial species. These results suggest that in less cooperative species, intra-colony conflict selects for queen retention of weapons that have significant costs to fecundity, while reproducing females from highly eusocial species, i.e., those with a single queen, have been able to reduce the cost of weapons as a result of protection by other colony members.

  13. Evidence for Widespread Associations between Neotropical Hymenopteran Insects and Actinobacteria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bernal Matarrita-Carranza

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The evolutionary success of hymenopteran insects has been associated with complex physiological and behavioral defense mechanisms against pathogens and parasites. Among these strategies are symbiotic associations between Hymenoptera and antibiotic-producing Actinobacteria, which provide protection to insect hosts. Herein, we examine associations between culturable Actinobacteria and 29 species of tropical hymenopteran insects that span five families, including Apidae (bees, Vespidae (wasps, and Formicidae (ants. In total, 197 Actinobacteria isolates were obtained from 22 of the 29 different insect species sampled. Through 16S rRNA gene sequences of 161 isolates, we show that 91% of the symbionts correspond to members of the genus Streptomyces with less common isolates belonging to Pseudonocardia and Amycolatopsis. Electron microscopy revealed the presence of filamentous bacteria with Streptomyces morphology in brood chambers of two different species of the eusocial wasps. Four fungal strains in the family Ophiocordycipitacea (Hypocreales known to be specialized insect parasites were also isolated. Bioassay challenges between the Actinobacteria and their possible targeted pathogenic antagonist (both obtained from the same insect at the genus or species level provide evidence that different Actinobacteria isolates produced antifungal activity, supporting the hypothesis of a defensive association between the insects and these microbe species. Finally, phylogenetic analysis of 16S rRNA and gyrB demonstrate the presence of five Streptomyces lineages associated with a broad range of insect species. Particularly our Clade I is of much interest as it is composed of one 16S rRNA phylotype repeatedly isolated from different insect groups in our sample. This phylotype corresponds to a previously described lineage of host-associated Streptomyces. These results suggest Streptomyces Clade I is a Hymenoptera host-associated lineage spanning several new insect

  14. Evidence for Widespread Associations between Neotropical Hymenopteran Insects and Actinobacteria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matarrita-Carranza, Bernal; Moreira-Soto, Rolando D.; Murillo-Cruz, Catalina; Mora, Marielos; Currie, Cameron R.; Pinto-Tomas, Adrián A.

    2017-01-01

    The evolutionary success of hymenopteran insects has been associated with complex physiological and behavioral defense mechanisms against pathogens and parasites. Among these strategies are symbiotic associations between Hymenoptera and antibiotic-producing Actinobacteria, which provide protection to insect hosts. Herein, we examine associations between culturable Actinobacteria and 29 species of tropical hymenopteran insects that span five families, including Apidae (bees), Vespidae (wasps), and Formicidae (ants). In total, 197 Actinobacteria isolates were obtained from 22 of the 29 different insect species sampled. Through 16S rRNA gene sequences of 161 isolates, we show that 91% of the symbionts correspond to members of the genus Streptomyces with less common isolates belonging to Pseudonocardia and Amycolatopsis. Electron microscopy revealed the presence of filamentous bacteria with Streptomyces morphology in brood chambers of two different species of the eusocial wasps. Four fungal strains in the family Ophiocordycipitacea (Hypocreales) known to be specialized insect parasites were also isolated. Bioassay challenges between the Actinobacteria and their possible targeted pathogenic antagonist (both obtained from the same insect at the genus or species level) provide evidence that different Actinobacteria isolates produced antifungal activity, supporting the hypothesis of a defensive association between the insects and these microbe species. Finally, phylogenetic analysis of 16S rRNA and gyrB demonstrate the presence of five Streptomyces lineages associated with a broad range of insect species. Particularly our Clade I is of much interest as it is composed of one 16S rRNA phylotype repeatedly isolated from different insect groups in our sample. This phylotype corresponds to a previously described lineage of host-associated Streptomyces. These results suggest Streptomyces Clade I is a Hymenoptera host-associated lineage spanning several new insect taxa and

  15. Insects and Scorpions

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... insects or scorpions can be hazardous to outdoor workers. Stinging or biting insects include bees, wasps, hornets, and fire ants. The health effects of stinging or biting insects or scorpions range ...

  16. Nest-mate recognition in Manuelia postica (Apidae: Xylocopinae): an eusocial trait is present in a solitary bee

    OpenAIRE

    Flores-Prado, Luis; Aguilera-Olivares, Daniel; Niemeyer, Hermann M

    2007-01-01

    In eusocial Hymenoptera, females are more tolerant towards nest-mate than towards non-nest-mate females. In solitary Hymenoptera, females are generally aggressive towards any conspecific female. Field observations of the nest biology of Manuelia postica suggested nest-mate recognition. Experiments were performed involving two live interacting females or one live female interacting with a dead female. Live females from different nests were more intolerant to each other than females from the sa...

  17. Morphological, chemical and developmental aspects of the Dufour gland in some eusocial bees (Hymenoptera, Apidae: a review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fábio Camargo Abdalla

    2006-06-01

    Full Text Available Morphological, chemical and developmental aspects of the Dufour gland in some eusocial bees (Hymenoptera, Apidae: a review. The present revision focused on the more recent data about the Dufour gland in some eusocial bees, taking in account general aspects of its morphology, secretion chemical nature, bio-synthetic pathway and development. Many functions have been attributed to this gland in eusocial bees, but none are convincing. With the new data about this gland, not only the secretion chemical pathway of the Dufour gland may be reasonable understood, as its function in some eusocial bees, especially Apis mellifera Linné, 1758, which has been extensively studied in the last years.Aspectos morfológicos, químicos e do desenvolvimento da glândula de Dufour em algumas abelhas eussociais (Hymenoptera, Apidae: revisão. Esta revisão aborda os mais recentes dados sobre a glândula de Dufour em algumas abelhas eussociais, considerando aspectos gerais da sua morfologia, do seu desenvolvimento, da natureza química da sua secreção, assim como sua via bio-sintética. Muitas funções têm-se atribuído à glândula de Dufour nas abelhas eussociais, mas nenhuma suficientemente convincente. Os novos dados a respeito dessa glândula permitem não só conhecer razoavelmente bem a via bio-sintética como a função da secreção da glândula de Dufour em algumas abelhas eussociais, especialmente em Apis mellifera Linné, 1758, a qual tem sido extensivamente estudada nos últimos anos.

  18. Insects, isotopes and radiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lindquist, D.A.

    1987-01-01

    The article describes the increased use of nuclear techniques in controlling harmful insects. The sterile insect technique (SIT), which uses radiation to sexually sterilize insects and prevent reproduction, is particularly effective in eradication programmes. At the present time, there are approximately 10 species of insect pests being attacked by the SIT. Research and development is being conducted on other insect species and it is anticipated that the technology will be more widely used in the future

  19. The nest as fortress: Defensive behavior of Polybia emaciata, a mud-nesting eusocial wasp

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sean O'Donnell

    2002-02-01

    Full Text Available The swarm-founding wasp Polybia emaciata is unusual among eusocial Vespidae because it uses mud, rather than wood pulp, as its primary nest construction material. Polybia emaciata nests are more durable than similarly sized paper nests. We tested the hypothesis that the defensive behavior of this wasp may have been modified to take advantage of their strong nests in defense against vertebrate attacks. We simulated vertebrate disturbances by tapping on, and breathing in, P. emaciata. nests and similarly sized P. occidentalis paper nests in the same location at the same time. Polybia emaciata. responses to disturbance were qualitatively different from those of P. occidentalis. The latter exit the nest and attack, while P. emaciata. workers typically fled or entered the nest, attacking only after repeated and extended disturbances. We conclude that durable nest material may permit predator avoidance behavior in P. emaciata.. We compare the defensive responses of P. emaciata. workers with those of other swarm-founding Vespidae, and discuss several selective forces that could cause the evolution of species variation in nest defense behavior.

  20. Cephalic salivary glands of two species of advanced eusocial bees (Hymenoptera: Apidae: morphology and secretion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silvana B. Poiani

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Some adult eusocial bees have a pair of cephalic salivary glands (CSG in addition to the thoracic labial or salivary gland pairs. This paper deals with variations in morphological features and secretion production of the CSG of females and males of Apis mellifera Linnaeus, 1758 and Scaptotrigona postica Latreille, 1807. The following life stages were studied: newly emerged, nurse, and forager workers; newly emerged and egg-laying queens; and newly emerged and sexually mature males. The histological results showed that the CSG differs between the two species in the following features: while alveoli and duct cells are cuboidal in workers and queens of A. mellifera, they change from cuboidal to flat in S. postica as the workers age. The glands of newly emerged males and females of A. mellifera are similar. However, as males become sexually mature, glands degenerate and practically disappear. The secretion from the glands of females of both species is oleaginous and gradually accumulates in the lumen of the alveoli in the beginning of the adult phase. Consequently, forager workers and egg-laying queens exhibit more turgid alveoli than younger individuals. Sudan black and Nile's blue staining indicated that the CSG secretion consists of neutral lipids. The possible role of gland secretion is discussed taking in account tasks performed by the individuals in the particular phases studied.

  1. Colony size evolution and the origin of eusociality in corbiculate bees (Hymenoptera: Apinae.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Enrique Rodriguez-Serrano

    Full Text Available Recently, it has been proposed that the one of the main determinants of complex societies in Hymenoptera is colony size, since the existence of large colonies reduces the direct reproductive success of an average individual, given a decreased chance of being part of the reproductive caste. In this study, we evaluate colony size evolution in corbiculate bees and their relationship with the sociality level shown by these bees. Specifically i the correlation between colony size and level of sociality considering the phylogenetic relationship to evaluate a general evolutionary tendency, and ii the hypothetical ancestral forms of several clades within a phylogeny of corbiculate bees, to address idiosyncratic process occurring at important nodes. We found that the level of social complexity in corbiculate bees is phylogenetically correlated with colony size. Additionally, another process is invoked to propose why colony size evolved concurrently with the level of social complexity. The study of this trait improves the understanding of the evolutionary transition from simple to complex societies, and highlights the importance of explicit probabilistic models to test the evolution of other important characters involved in the origin of eusociality.

  2. Androgen receptor distribution in the social decision-making network of eusocial naked mole-rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holmes, Melissa M; Van Mil, Spencer; Bulkowski, Camila; Goldman, Sharry L; Goldman, Bruce D; Forger, Nancy G

    2013-11-01

    Naked mole-rats are highly social rodents that live in large groups and exhibit a strict reproductive and social hierarchy. Only a few animals in each colony breed; the remainder are non-reproductive and are socially subordinate to breeders. We have examined androgen receptor immunoreactive (AR+) cells in brain regions comprising the recently described social decision-making network in subordinate and breeder naked mole-rats of both sexes. We find that subordinates have a significantly higher percentage of AR+ cells in all brain regions expressing this protein. By contrast, there were no significant effects of sex and no sex-by-status interactions on the percentage of AR+ cells. Taken together with previous findings, the present data complete a systematic assessment of the distribution of AR protein in the social decision-making network of the eusocial mammalian brain and demonstrate a significant role for social status in the regulation of this protein throughout many nodes of this network. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. A nuclear insect appears

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shin, Gi Hwal

    1989-06-01

    This book is dairy of a nuclear insect in A. F. era. It consists of 6 parts, which have fun pictures and titles. The contents are the letter that is sent the Homo sapiens by insect, exodus of nuclear insect F 100 years latter. The time that a nuclear insect is attacked in F 101, the time that a nuclear dinosaur is beat in AF 102, the time that a nuclear insect struggles in AF 104 and the time that a nuclear insect drifts in AF 104.

  4. A mid-cretaceous origin of sociality in xylocopine bees with only two origins of true worker castes indicates severe barriers to eusociality.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra M Rehan

    Full Text Available The origin of sterile worker castes, resulting in eusociality, represents one of the major evolutionary transitions in the history of life. Understanding how eusociality has evolved is therefore an important issue for understanding life on earth. Here we show that in the large bee subfamily Xylocopinae, a simple form of sociality was present in the ancestral lineage and there have been at least four reversions to purely solitary nesting. The ancestral form of sociality did not involve morphological worker castes and maximum colony sizes were very small. True worker castes, entailing a life-time commitment to non-reproductive roles, have evolved only twice, and only one of these resulted in discrete queen-worker morphologies. Our results indicate extremely high barriers to the evolution of eusociality. Its origins are likely to have required very unusual life-history and ecological circumstances, rather than the amount of time that selection can operate on more simple forms of sociality.

  5. Active explorers show low learning performance in a social insect

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Eve UDINO; Margot PEREZ; Claudio CARERE; Patrizia d'ETTORRE

    2017-01-01

    An intriguing question in behavioral biology is whether consistent individual differences (called animal personalities) relate to variation in cognitive performance because commonly measured personality traits may be associated with risk-reward trade-offs.Social insects,whose learning abilities have been extensively characterized,show consistent behavioral variability,both at colony and at individual level.We investigated the possible link between personality traits and learning performance in the carpenter ant Camponotus aethiops.Exploratory activity,sociability,and aggression were assessed twice in ant foragers.Behaviors differed among individuals,they were partly repeatable across time and exploratory activity correlated positively with aggression.Learning abilities were quantified by differential conditioning of the maxilla-labium extension response,a task that requires cue perception and information storage.We found that exploratory activity of individual ants significantly predicted learning performance:"active-explorers" were slower in learning the task than "inactive-explorers".The results suggest for the first time a link between a personality trait and cognitive performance in eusocial insects,and that the underlying individual variability could affect colony performance and success.

  6. Respiration in Aquatic Insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacFarland, John

    1985-01-01

    This article: (1) explains the respiratory patterns of several freshwater insects; (2) describes the differences and mechanisms of spiracular cutaneous, and gill respiration; and (3) discusses behavioral aspects of selected aquatic insects. (ML)

  7. Insect Bites and Stings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Most insect bites are harmless, though they sometimes cause discomfort. Bee, wasp, and hornet stings and fire ant bites usually hurt. Mosquito and flea bites usually itch. Insects can also spread diseases. In the United States, ...

  8. Insects: An Interdisciplinary Unit

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leger, Heather

    2007-01-01

    The author talks about an interdisciplinary unit on insects, and presents activities that can help students practice communication skills (interpersonal, interpretive, and presentational) and learn about insects with hands-on activities.

  9. Insects of the riparian

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terrence J. Rogers

    1996-01-01

    This paper describes life histories, defoliation problems and other activities of insects associated with forest tree species growing along high elevation streams and river banks. In addition, examples of insects and diseases associated with lower elevation riparian areas are given.

  10. Radioactive labelling of insects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Thygesen, Th.

    Experiments are described with the internal contamination of insects with phosphorus 32 introduced previously in plants of the brassica type using three different techniques. The intake of radioactivity from the plants to the insects is shown. (L.O.)

  11. Diversity in protein glycosylation among insect species.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gianni Vandenborre

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: A very common protein modification in multicellular organisms is protein glycosylation or the addition of carbohydrate structures to the peptide backbone. Although the Class of the Insecta is the largest animal taxon on Earth, almost all information concerning glycosylation in insects is derived from studies with only one species, namely the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In this report, the differences in glycoproteomes between insects belonging to several economically important insect orders were studied. Using GNA (Galanthus nivalis agglutinin affinity chromatography, different sets of glycoproteins with mannosyl-containing glycan structures were purified from the flour beetle (Tribolium castaneum, the silkworm (Bombyx mori, the honeybee (Apis mellifera, the fruit fly (D. melanogaster and the pea aphid (Acyrthosiphon pisum. To identify and characterize the purified glycoproteins, LC-MS/MS analysis was performed. For all insect species, it was demonstrated that glycoproteins were related to a broad range of biological processes and molecular functions. Moreover, the majority of glycoproteins retained on the GNA column were unique to one particular insect species and only a few glycoproteins were present in the five different glycoprotein sets. Furthermore, these data support the hypothesis that insect glycoproteins can be decorated with mannosylated O-glycans. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The results presented here demonstrate that oligomannose N-glycosylation events are highly specific depending on the insect species. In addition, we also demonstrated that protein O-mannosylation in insect species may occur more frequently than currently believed.

  12. Support for maternal manipulation of developmental nutrition in a facultatively eusocial bee, Megalopta genalis (Halictidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kapheim, Karen M; Bernal, Sandra P; Smith, Adam R; Nonacs, Peter; Wcislo, William T

    2011-06-01

    Developmental maternal effects are a potentially important source of phenotypic variation, but they can be difficult to distinguish from other environmental factors. This is an important distinction within the context of social evolution, because if variation in offspring helping behavior is due to maternal manipulation, social selection may act on maternal phenotypes, as well as those of offspring. Factors correlated with social castes have been linked to variation in developmental nutrition, which might provide opportunity for females to manipulate the social behavior of their offspring. Megalopta genalis is a mass-provisioning facultatively eusocial sweat bee for which production of males and females in social and solitary nests is concurrent and asynchronous. Female offspring may become either gynes (reproductive dispersers) or workers (non-reproductive helpers). We predicted that if maternal manipulation plays a role in M. genalis caste determination, investment in daughters should vary more than for sons. The mass and protein content of pollen stores provided to female offspring varied significantly more than those of males, but volume and sugar content did not. Sugar content varied more among female eggs in social nests than in solitary nests. Provisions were larger, with higher nutrient content, for female eggs and in social nests. Adult females and males show different patterns of allometry, and their investment ratio ranged from 1.23 to 1.69. Adult body weight varied more for females than males, possibly reflecting increased variation in maternal investment in female offspring. These differences are consistent with a role for maternal manipulation in the social plasticity observed in M. genalis.

  13. Local differences in parasitism and competition shape defensive investment in a polymorphic eusocial bee.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Segers, Francisca H I D; von Zuben, Lucas; Grüter, Christoph

    2016-02-01

    Many colonial animals rely for their defense on a soldier caste. Adaptive colony demography theory predicts that colonies should flexibly adjust the investment in different worker castes depending on the colony needs. For example, colonies should invest more in defensive workers (e.g., soldiers) in dangerous environments. However, evidence for this prediction has been mixed. We combined descriptive and experimental approaches to examine whether defensive investment and worker size are adjusted to local ecology in the only known bee with polymorphic workers, Tetragonisca angustula. Colonies of this species are defended by a morphologically specialized soldier caste. Our study included three populations that differed in the density of food competition and the occurrence of a parasitic robber bee. We found that colonies coexisting with robber bees had on average 43% more soldiers defending the nest entrance, while colonies facing stronger foraging competition had soldiers that were -6-7% smaller. We then experimentally relocated colonies to areas with different levels of competition. When released from intense food competition, body sizes of guards and foragers increased. After introducing chemical robber bee cues at nest entrances, we found both a short-term and a long-term up-regulation of the number of soldiers defending the colony. Active soldier numbers remained high after the experiment for a duration equivalent to 2-3 worker life spans. How information about past parasite threat is stored in the colony is currently unknown. In summary, T. angustula adjusts both the number and the body size of active soldiers to local ecological conditions. Competitor density also affects forager (or minor) size, an important colony trait with potential community ecological consequences. Our study supports adaptive colony demography theory in a eusocial bee and highlights the importance of colony threats and competition as selective forces shaping colony phenotype.

  14. Exploring Sound with Insects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robertson, Laura; Meyer, John R.

    2010-01-01

    Differences in insect morphology and movement during singing provide a fascinating opportunity for students to investigate insects while learning about the characteristics of sound. In the activities described here, students use a free online computer software program to explore the songs of the major singing insects and experiment with making…

  15. Insects and human nutrition

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Roos, Nanna

    2018-01-01

    Despite high diversity in species as well as metamorphological life-­stages, edible insects are essentially an animal-source food contributing high quality protein and fat when viewed in the context of human nutrition. The nutritional contribution of insects to diets in populations where insects ...

  16. Nest-mate recognition in Manuelia postica (Apidae: Xylocopinae): an eusocial trait is present in a solitary bee.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flores-Prado, Luis; Aguilera-Olivares, Daniel; Niemeyer, Hermann M

    2008-02-07

    In eusocial Hymenoptera, females are more tolerant towards nest-mate than towards non-nest-mate females. In solitary Hymenoptera, females are generally aggressive towards any conspecific female. Field observations of the nest biology of Manuelia postica suggested nest-mate recognition. Experiments were performed involving two live interacting females or one live female interacting with a dead female. Live females from different nests were more intolerant to each other than females from the same nest. Females were more intolerant towards non-nest-mate than towards nest-mate dead females. When dead females were washed with pentane, no differences in tolerant and intolerant behaviours were detected between non-nest-mate and nest-mate females. Females were more intolerant towards nest-mate female carcasses coated with the cuticular extract from a non-nest-mate than towards non-nest-mate female carcasses coated with the cuticular extract from a nest-mate. The compositions of the cuticular extracts was more similar between females from the same nest than between females from different nests. The results demonstrate for the first time nest-mate recognition mediated by cuticular chemicals in a largely solitary species of Apidae. The position of Manuelia at the base of the Apidae phylogeny suggests that nest-mate recognition in eusocial species apical to Manuelia represents the retention of a primitive capacity in Apidae.

  17. Variability of space-use patterns in a free living eusocial rodent, Ansell’s mole-rat indicates age-based rather than caste polyethism

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Šklíba, Jan; Lövy, M.; Burda, H.; Šumbera, R.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 6, DEC 06 (2016), č. článku 37497. ISSN 2045-2322 EU Projects: European Commission(XE) 669609 - Diversity6continents Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : eusocial rodent * mole-rats * Fukomys anselli Subject RIV: EG - Zoology OBOR OECD: Zoology Impact factor: 4.259, year: 2016 https://www.nature.com/articles/srep37497

  18. Morphologic and molecular data help adopting the insect-pathogenic nephridiophagids (Nephridiophagidae among the early diverging fungal lineages, close to the Chytridiomycota

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Renate Radek

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Nephridiophagids are poorly known unicellular eukaryotes, previously of uncertain systematic position, that parasitize the Malpighian tubules of insects. Their life cycle includes merogony with multinucleate plasmodia and sporogony leading to small, uninucleate spores. We examined the phylogenetic affiliations of three species of Nephridiophaga, including one new species, Nephridiophaga maderae, from the Madeira cockroach (Leucophaea maderae. In addition to the specific host, the new species differs from those already known by the size of the spores and by the number of spores within the sporogenic plasmodium. The inferred phylogenetic analyses strongly support a placement of the nephridiophagids in the fungal kingdom near its root and with a close, but unresolved, relationship to the chytids (Chytridiomycota. We found evidence for the nephridiophagidean speciation as being strongly coupled to host speciation.

  19. Genetic basis of the sterile insect technique

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Robinson, A.S.

    2014-01-01

    The use of the sterile insect technique for insect control relies on the introduction of sterility in the females of the wild population. This sterility is produced following the mating of these females with released males carrying, in their sperm, dominant lethal mutations that have been induced by ionizing radiation. As well as radiation-induced sterility, natural mechanisms can be recruited, especially the use of hybrid sterility. Radiation is usually one of the last procedures that insects undergo before leaving mass-rearing facilities for release in the field. It is essential that the dosimetry of the radiation source be checked to ensure that all the insects receive the required minimum dose. A dose should be chosen that maximizes the level of introduced sterility in the wild females in the field. Irradiation in nitrogen can provide protection against the detrimental somatic effects of radiation. Currently, the development of molecular methods to sterilize pest insects in the field, by the release of fertile insects carrying trans genes, is very much in vogue. It is concluded that using a physical process, such as radiation, will always have significant advantages over genetic and other methods of sterilization for the large-scale application of the sterile insect technique. (author)

  20. Cryptic extended brood care in the facultatively eusocial sweat bee Megalopta genalis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Quiñones Paredes, Andres; Wcislo, W.T.

    2015-01-01

    As a result of different brood cell provisioning strategies, nest-making insects may differ in the extent to which adults regularly provide extended parental care to their brood beyond nest defense. Mass-provisioning species cache the entire food supply needed for larval development prior to the

  1. Molecular analysis of the sea anemone toxin Av3 reveals selectivity to insects and demonstrates the heterogeneity of receptor site-3 on voltage-gated Na+ channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moran, Yehu; Kahn, Roy; Cohen, Lior; Gur, Maya; Karbat, Izhar; Gordon, Dalia; Gurevitz, Michael

    2007-08-15

    Av3 is a short peptide toxin from the sea anemone Anemonia viridis shown to be active on crustaceans and inactive on mammals. It inhibits inactivation of Na(v)s (voltage-gated Na+ channels) like the structurally dissimilar scorpion alpha-toxins and type I sea anemone toxins that bind to receptor site-3. To examine the potency and mode of interaction of Av3 with insect Na(v)s, we established a system for its expression, mutagenized it throughout, and analysed it in toxicity, binding and electrophysiological assays. The recombinant Av3 was found to be highly toxic to blowfly larvae (ED50=2.65+/-0.46 pmol/100 mg), to compete well with the site-3 toxin LqhalphaIT (from the scorpion Leiurus quinquestriatus) on binding to cockroach neuronal membranes (K(i)=21.4+/-7.1 nM), and to inhibit the inactivation of Drosophila melanogaster channel, DmNa(v)1, but not that of mammalian Na(v)s expressed in Xenopus oocytes. Moreover, like other site-3 toxins, the activity of Av3 was synergically enhanced by ligands of receptor site-4 (e.g. scorpion beta-toxins). The bioactive surface of Av3 was found to consist mainly of aromatic residues and did not resemble any of the bioactive surfaces of other site-3 toxins. These analyses have portrayed a toxin that might interact with receptor site-3 in a different fashion compared with other ligands of this site. This assumption was corroborated by a D1701R mutation in DmNa(v)1, which has been shown to abolish the activity of all other site-3 ligands, except Av3. All in all, the present study provides further evidence for the heterogeneity of receptor site-3, and raises Av3 as a unique model for design of selective anti-insect compounds.

  2. Social cues trigger differential immune investment strategies in a non-social insect, Tenebrio molitor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gallagher, Joe D; Siva-Jothy, Michael T; Evison, Sophie E F

    2018-02-01

    Social immunization (SI) is a horizontal transfer of immunity that protects naive hosts against infection following exposure to infected nestmates. While mainly documented in eusocial insects, non-social species also share similar ecological features which favour the development of group-level immunity. Here, we investigate SI in Tenebrio molitor by pairing naive females with a pathogen-challenged conspecific for 72 h before measuring a series of immune and fitness traits. We found no evidence for SI, as beetles who cohabited with a live pathogen-challenged conspecific were not better protected against bacterial challenge. However, exposure to a heat-killed-bacteria-challenged conspecific appeared to increase pathogen tolerance, which manifested in differential fitness investment. Our results together suggest that T. molitor do respond to immune-related cues in the social environment, despite not showing a classic immunization response as predicted. © 2018 The Author(s).

  3. Prostaglandins and their receptors in insect biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David eStanley

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available We treat the biological significance of prostaglandins (PGs and their known receptors in insect biology. PGs and related eicosanoids are oxygenated derivatives of arachidonic acid (AA and two other C20 polyunsaturated fatty acids. PGs are mostly appreciated in the context of biomedicine, but a growing body of literature indicates the biological significance of these compounds extends throughout the animal kingdom, and possibly beyond. PGs act in several crucial areas of insect biology. In reproduction, a specific PG, PGE2, releases oviposition behavior in most crickets and a few other insect species; PGs also mediate events in egg development in some species, which may represent all insects. PGs play major roles in modulating fluid secretion in Malpighian tubules, rectum and salivary glands, although, again, this has been studied in only a few insect species that may represent the Class. Insect immunity is a very complex defense system. PGs and other eicosanoids mediate a large number of immune reactions to infection and invasion. The actions of most PGs are mediated by specific receptors. Biomedical research has discovered a great deal of knowledge about PG receptors in mammals, including their structures, pharmacology, molecular biology and cellular locations. Studies of PG receptors in insects lag behind the biomedical background, however, recent results hold the promise of accelerated research in this area. A PG receptor has been identified in a class of lepidopteran hemocytes and experimentally linked to the release of prophenoloxidase. We conclude that research into PGs and their receptors in insects will lead to important advances in our understanding of insect biology.

  4. Endocrinology of insects

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Downer, Roger G. H; Laufer, Hans

    1983-01-01

    Contents: Organization of the neuroendocrine system - Chemistry of insect hormones and neurohormones - Regulation of metamorphosis - Regulation of reproduction - Regulation of growth and development...

  5. Steering soil microbiomes to suppress aboveground insect pests

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pineda, Ana; Kaplan, Ian; Bezemer, T. Martijn

    2017-01-01

    Soil-borne microbes affect aboveground herbivorous insects through a cascade of molecular and chemical changes in the plant, but knowledge of these microbe?plant?insect interactions is mostly limited to one or a few microbial strains. Yet, the soil microbial community comprises thousands of unique

  6. Insects and diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    John W. Couston

    2009-01-01

    Insects and diseases are a natural part of forested ecosystems. Their activity is partially regulated by biotic factors, e.g., host abundance, host quality; physical factors, e.g., soil, climate; and disturbances (Berryman 1986). Insects and diseases can influence both forest patterns and forest processes by causing, for example, defoliation and mortality. These...

  7. Insects: Bugged Out!

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piehl, Kathy

    2011-01-01

    Insects really need no introduction. They have lived on earth much longer than humans and vastly outnumber people and all other animal species combined. People encounter them daily in their houses and yards. Yet, when children want to investigate insects, books can help them start their explorations. "Paleo Bugs" carries readers back to the time…

  8. Insects and Bugs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutherland, Karen

    2009-01-01

    They have been around for centuries. They sting, they bite. They cause intense itching or painful sores. They even cause allergic reactions and sometimes death. There are two types of insects that are pests to humans--those that sting and those that bite. The insects that bite do so with their mouths and include mosquitoes, chiggers, and ticks.…

  9. Social status and sex independently influence androgen receptor expression in the eusocial naked mole-rat brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holmes, Melissa M; Goldman, Bruce D; Forger, Nancy G

    2008-08-01

    Naked mole-rats (Heterocephalus glaber) are eusocial rodents that live in large subterranean colonies including a single breeding female and 1-3 breeding males; all other members of the colony, known as subordinates, are reproductively suppressed. We recently found that naked mole-rats lack many of the sex differences in the brain and spinal cord commonly found in other rodents. Instead, neural morphology is influenced by breeding status, such that breeders, regardless of sex, have more neurons than subordinates in the ventromedial nucleus of the hypothalamus (VMH), and larger overall volumes of the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (BST), paraventricular nucleus (PVN) and medial amygdala (MeA). To begin to understand how breeding status influences brain morphology, we examined the distribution of androgen receptor (AR) immunoreactivity in gonadally intact breeders and subordinates of both sexes. All animals had AR+ nuclei in many of the same regions positive for AR in other mammals, including the VMH, BST, PVN, MeA, and the ventral portion of the premammillary nucleus (PMv). We also observed diffuse labeling throughout the preoptic area, demonstrating that distribution of the AR protein in presumptive reproductive brain nuclei is well-conserved, even in a species that exhibits remarkably little sexual dimorphism. In contrast to other rodents, however, naked mole-rats lacked AR+ nuclei in the suprachiasmatic nucleus and hippocampus. Males had more AR+ nuclei in the MeA, VMH, and PMv than did females. Surprisingly, breeders had significantly fewer AR+ nuclei than subordinates in all brain regions examined (VMH, BST, PVN, MeA, and PMv). Thus, social status is strongly correlated with AR immunoreactivity in this eusocial species.

  10. Queen pheromones: The chemical crown governing insect social life.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holman, Luke

    2010-11-01

    Group-living species produce signals that alter the behavior and even the physiology of their social partners. Social insects possess especially sophisticated chemical communication systems that govern every aspect of colony life, including the defining feature of eusociality: reproductive division of labor. Current evidence hints at the central importance of queen pheromones, but progress has been hindered by the fact that such pheromones have only been isolated in honeybees. In a pair of papers on the ant Lasius niger, we identified and investigated a queen pheromone regulating worker sterility. The cuticular hydrocarbon 3-methylhentriacontane (3-MeC(31)) is correlated with queen maturity and fecundity and workers are also more likely to execute surplus queens that have low amounts of this chemical. Experiments with synthetic 3-MeC(31) found that it inhibits ovarian development in queenless workers and lowers worker aggression towards objects coated with it. Production of 3-MeC(31) by queens was depressed by an experimental immune challenge, and the same chemical was abundant on queenlaid eggs, suggesting that the workers' responses to the queen are conditional on her health and fecundity. Together with other studies, these results indicate that queen pheromones are honest signals of quality that simultaneously regulate multiple social behaviors.

  11. Allergic risks of consuming edible insects: A systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ribeiro, José Carlos; Cunha, Luís Miguel; Sousa-Pinto, Bernardo; Fonseca, João

    2018-01-01

    The expected future demand for food and animal-derived protein will require environment-friendly novel food sources with high nutritional value. Insects may be one of such novel food sources. However, there needs to be an assessment of the risks associated with their consumption, including allergic risks. Therefore, we performed a systematic review aiming to analyse current data available regarding the allergic risks of consuming insects. We reviewed all reported cases of food allergy to insects, and studied the possibility of cross-reactivity and co-sensitisation between edible insects, crustaceans and house dust mites. We analysed a total of 25 articles - eight assessing the cross-reactivity/co-sensitisation between edible insects, crustaceans and house dust mites; three characterizing allergens in edible insects and 14 case reports, describing case series or prevalence studies of food allergy caused by insects. Cross-reactivity/co-sensitisation between edible insects and crustaceans seems to be clinically relevant, while it is still unknown if co-sensitisation between house dust mites and edible insects can lead to a food allergy. Additionally, more information is also needed about the molecular mechanisms underlying food allergy to insects, although current data suggest that an important role is played by arthropod pan-allergens such as tropomyosin or arginine kinase. © 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  12. Cryptic extended brood care in the facultatively eusocial sweat bee Megalopta genalis

    OpenAIRE

    Quiñones Paredes, Andres; Wcislo, W.T.

    2015-01-01

    As a result of different brood cell provisioning strategies, nest-making insects may differ in the extent to which adults regularly provide extended parental care to their brood beyond nest defense. Mass-provisioning species cache the entire food supply needed for larval development prior to the oviposition and typically seal the brood cell. It is usually assumed that there is no regular contact between the adult(s) and brood. Here, we show that the bee, Megalopta genalis, expresses a form of...

  13. Genetic basis of triatomine behavior: lessons from available insect genomes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jose Manuel Latorre-Estivalis

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Triatomines have been important model organisms for behavioural research. Diverse reports about triatomine host search, pheromone communication in the sexual, shelter and alarm contexts, daily cycles of activity, refuge choice and behavioural plasticity have been published in the last two decades. In recent times, a variety of molecular genetics techniques has allowed researchers to investigate elaborate and complex questions about the genetic bases of the physiology of insects. This, together with the current characterisation of the genome sequence of Rhodnius prolixus allows the resurgence of this excellent insect physiology model in the omics era. In the present revision, we suggest that studying the molecular basis of behaviour and sensory ecology in triatomines will promote a deeper understanding of fundamental aspects of insect and, particularly, vector biology. This will allow uncovering unknown features of essential insect physiology questions for a hemimetabolous model organism, promoting more robust comparative studies of insect sensory function and cognition.

  14. Beneficial Insects and Insect Pollinators on Milkweed in South Georgia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Insect pollinators are essential for the reproduction of more than two-thirds of the world’s crops, and beneficial insects play an important role in managing pest insects in agricultural farmscapes. These insects depend on nectar for their survival in these farmscapes. The flowers of tropical milkwe...

  15. Chemistry and biology of insect bioluminescence

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Colepicolo Neto, P.; Bechara, E.J.H.

    1984-01-01

    Basic aspects on the Chemistry and Biology of bioluminescence are reviewed, with emphasis on insects. Data from the investigation of Lampyridae (fireflies) are collected from literature. With regard to Elateridae (click beetles) and Phengodidae (rail road worms), the least explored families of luminescent insects, new data are presented on the following aspects: (i) 'in vivo' emission spectra, (ii) chemical nature of the luciferin, (iii) conection between bioluminescence and 'oxygen toxicity' as a result of molecular oxygen storage and (iv) the role of light emission by larvae and pupae. (Author) [pt

  16. Feeding the insect industry

    Science.gov (United States)

    This article reports the use of insect colloidal artificial diets suitable for the rearing of economically important arthropods, such as Lygus lineolaris, Lygus hesperus, Coleomegilla maculata, and Phytoseiulus persimilis The different diets contain key nutrients such as proteins, carbohydrates, vit...

  17. Genetic Engineering of Insects

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    wild-type DNA resulted in the production of adults with wing ... using conventional method of breeding and selection. .... insects, birds, and other animals .... used to derive the expression of the antibiotic, tetracycline repressible transactivator.

  18. Allergies to Insect Venom

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... insects (as might be the case when a nest is disturbed, or when Africanized honeybees are involved); ... test with the five commercially available venoms; honey bee, paper wasp, yellow jacket, yellow hornet and white- ...

  19. Evolution of the Insects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grimaldi, David; Engel, Michael S.

    2005-05-01

    This book chronicles the complete evolutionary history of insects--their living diversity and relationships as well as 400 million years of fossils. Introductory sections cover the living species diversity of insects, methods of reconstructing evolutionary relationships, basic insect structure, and the diverse modes of insect fossilization and major fossil deposits. Major sections then explore the relationships and evolution of each order of hexapods. The volume also chronicles major episodes in the evolutionary history of insects from their modest beginnings in the Devonian and the origin of wings hundreds of millions of years before pterosaurs and birds to the impact of mass extinctions and the explosive radiation of angiosperms on insects, and how they evolved into the most complex societies in nature. Whereas other volumes focus on either living species or fossils, this is the first comprehensive synthesis of all aspects of insect evolution. Illustrated with 955 photo- and electron- micrographs, drawings, diagrams, and field photos, many in full color and virtually all of them original, this reference will appeal to anyone engaged with insect diversity--professional entomologists and students, insect and fossil collectors, and naturalists. David Grimaldi and Michael S. Engel have collectively published over 200 scientific articles and monographs on the relationships and fossil record of insects, including 10 articles in the journals Science, Nature, and Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. David Grimaldi is curator in the Division of Invertebrate Zoology, American Museum of Natural History and adjunct professor at Cornell University, Columbia University, and the City University of New York. David Grimaldi has traveled in 40 countries on 6 continents, collecting and studying recent species of insects and conducting fossil excavations. He is the author of Amber: Window to the Past (Abrams, 2003). Michael S. Engel is an assistant professor in the

  20. Insects and other invertebrates

    Science.gov (United States)

    John R. Jones; Norbert V. DeByle; Diane M. Bowers

    1985-01-01

    Quaking aspen throughout its range appears to be host to several insect and other invertebrate pests (fig. 1). It is a short-lived species that is palatable to a large variety of animals. Furniss and Carolin (1977) listed 33 insect species that use aspen as a food source. Some are quite damaging and may kill otherwise healthy stands of aspen; others feed on weakened or...

  1. Beneficial Insects: Beetles

    OpenAIRE

    Hodgson, Erin W.; Patterson, Ron

    2007-01-01

    There are many beneficial beetles in Utah besides lady beetles or ladybugs. Beetles can significantly reduce common insect and weed problems and in some cases eliminate the need for chemical control. Examples of beneficial beetles include: ground beetles, rove beetles, tiger beetles and tortoise beetles. Many of these beetles are native to Utah, while others have been purposely introduced to help control damage from exotic insect and weed pests.

  2. A morphologically specialized soldier caste improves colony defense in a neotropical eusocial bee.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grüter, Christoph; Menezes, Cristiano; Imperatriz-Fonseca, Vera L; Ratnieks, Francis L W

    2012-01-24

    Division of labor among workers is common in insect societies and is thought to be important in their ecological success. In most species, division of labor is based on age (temporal castes), but workers in some ants and termites show morphological specialization for particular tasks (physical castes). Large-headed soldier ants and termites are well-known examples of this specialization. However, until now there has been no equivalent example of physical worker subcastes in social bees or wasps. Here we provide evidence for a physical soldier subcaste in a bee. In the neotropical stingless bee Tetragonisca angustula, nest defense is performed by two groups of guards, one hovering near the nest entrance and the other standing on the wax entrance tube. We show that both types of guards are 30% heavier than foragers and of different shape; foragers have relatively larger heads, whereas guards have larger legs. Low variation within each subcaste results in negligible size overlap between guards and foragers, further indicating that they are distinct physical castes. In addition, workers that remove garbage from the nest are of intermediate size, suggesting that they might represent another unrecognized caste. Guards or soldiers are reared in low but sufficient numbers (1-2% of emerging workers), considering that bee Lestrimelitta limao, an important natural enemy, larger workers were able to fight for longer before being defeated by the much larger robber. This discovery opens up opportunities for the comparative study of physical castes in social insects, including the question of why soldiers appear to be so much rarer in bees than in ants or termites.

  3. Tyrosine metabolic enzymes from insects and mammals: a comparative perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vavricka, Christopher John; Han, Qian; Mehere, Prajwalini; Ding, Haizhen; Christensen, Bruce M; Li, Jianyong

    2014-02-01

    Differences in the metabolism of tyrosine between insects and mammals present an interesting example of molecular evolution. Both insects and mammals possess fine-tuned systems of enzymes to meet their specific demands for tyrosine metabolites; however, more homologous enzymes involved in tyrosine metabolism have emerged in many insect species. Without knowledge of modern genomics, one might suppose that mammals, which are generally more complex than insects and require tyrosine as a precursor for important catecholamine neurotransmitters and for melanin, should possess more enzymes to control tyrosine metabolism. Therefore, the question of why insects actually possess more tyrosine metabolic enzymes is quite interesting. It has long been known that insects rely heavily on tyrosine metabolism for cuticle hardening and for innate immune responses, and these evolutionary constraints are likely the key answers to this question. In terms of melanogenesis, mammals also possess a high level of regulation; yet mammalian systems possess more mechanisms for detoxification whereas insects accelerate pathways like melanogenesis and therefore must bear increased oxidative pressure. Our research group has had the opportunity to characterize the structure and function of many key proteins involved in tyrosine metabolism from both insects and mammals. In this mini review we will give a brief overview of our research on tyrosine metabolic enzymes in the scope of an evolutionary perspective of mammals in comparison to insects. © 2013 Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

  4. Fungus-insect gall of Phlebopus portentosus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Chun-Xia; He, Ming-Xia; Cao, Yang; Liu, Jing; Gao, Feng; Wang, Wen-Bing; Ji, Kai-Ping; Shao, Shi-Cheng; Wang, Yun

    2015-01-01

    Phlebopus portentosus is a popular edible wild mushroom found in the tropical Yunnan, China, and northern Thailand. In its natural habitats, a gall often has been found on some plant roots, around which fungal fruiting bodies are produced. The galls are different from common insect galls in that their cavity walls are not made from plant tissue but rather from the hyphae of P. portentosus. Therefore we have termed this phenomenon "fungus-insect gall". Thus far six root mealy bug species in the family Pseudococcidae that form fungus-insect galls with P. portentosus have been identified: Formicococcus polysperes, Geococcus satellitum, Planococcus minor, Pseudococcus cryptus, Paraputo banzigeri and Rastrococcus invadens. Fungus-insect galls were found on the roots of more than 21 plant species, including Delonix regia, Citrus maxima, Coffea arabica and Artocarpus heterophyllus. Greenhouse inoculation trials showed that fungus-insect galls were found on the roots of A. heterophyllus 1 mo after inoculation. The galls were subglobose to globose, fulvous when young and became dark brown at maturation. Each gall harbored one or more mealy bugs and had a chimney-like vent for ventilation and access to the gall. The cavity wall had three layers. Various shaped mealy bug wax deposits were found inside the wall. Fungal hyphae invaded the epidermis of plant roots and sometimes even the cortical cells during the late stage of gall development. The identity of the fungus inside the cavity was confirmed by molecular methods. © 2015 by The Mycological Society of America.

  5. Recombinant DNA technology and insect control

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Seawright, J.A.; Cockburn, Andrew F.

    1989-01-01

    In the past, the most successful avenue for the use of genetics in insect control has been the employment of the sterile insect technique, in which huge numbers of a species are produced in a factory, sterilized by exposure to ionizing radiation and released into the native habitat. this method is suitable for some species, but for logistical, economical, and biological reasons this control technique is not suitable for many economically important species. Our ability to use genetic approaches to cope with the myriad of insect pests will improve in the near future because of progress in the biochemical manipulation of genes. Molecular geneticists have created bacteria, plants, animals, and fungi that have useful new properties, and many of these are being used or tested for commercial use. A reasonable forecast is that a virtual revolution will occur in the way that we currently practice and perceive the genetic control of insects. Using genetic engineering manipulations to develop control techniques for insects of agricultural and public health importance is an exciting prospect and a highly desirable goal

  6. Recombinant DNA technology and insect control

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Seawright, J A; Cockburn, Andrew F [Insects Affecting Man and Animals Laboratory, Agric. Res. Serv., U.S. Department of Agriculture, Gainesville, FL (United States)

    1989-08-01

    In the past, the most successful avenue for the use of genetics in insect control has been the employment of the sterile insect technique, in which huge numbers of a species are produced in a factory, sterilized by exposure to ionizing radiation and released into the native habitat. this method is suitable for some species, but for logistical, economical, and biological reasons this control technique is not suitable for many economically important species. Our ability to use genetic approaches to cope with the myriad of insect pests will improve in the near future because of progress in the biochemical manipulation of genes. Molecular geneticists have created bacteria, plants, animals, and fungi that have useful new properties, and many of these are being used or tested for commercial use. A reasonable forecast is that a virtual revolution will occur in the way that we currently practice and perceive the genetic control of insects. Using genetic engineering manipulations to develop control techniques for insects of agricultural and public health importance is an exciting prospect and a highly desirable goal.

  7. Insect bite reactions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sanjay Singh

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Insects are a class of living creatures within the arthropods. Insect bite reactions are commonly seen in clinical practice. The present review touches upon the medically important insects and their places in the classification, the sparse literature on the epidemiology of insect bites in India, and different variables influencing the susceptibility of an individual to insect bites. Clinical features of mosquito bites, hypersensitivity to mosquito bites Epstein-Barr virus NK (HMB-EBV-NK disease, eruptive pseudoangiomatosis, Skeeter syndrome, papular pruritic eruption of HIV/AIDS, and clinical features produced by bed bugs, Mexican chicken bugs, assassin bugs, kissing bugs, fleas, black flies, Blandford flies, louse flies, tsetse flies, midges, and thrips are discussed. Brief account is presented of the immunogenic components of mosquito and bed bug saliva. Papular urticaria is discussed including its epidemiology, the 5 stages of skin reaction, the SCRATCH principle as an aid in diagnosis, and the recent evidence supporting participation of types I, III, and IV hypersensitivity reactions in its causation is summarized. Recent developments in the treatment of pediculosis capitis including spinosad 0.9% suspension, benzyl alcohol 5% lotion, dimethicone 4% lotion, isopropyl myristate 50% rinse, and other suffocants are discussed within the context of evidence derived from randomized controlled trials and key findings of a recent systematic review. We also touch upon a non-chemical treatment of head lice and the ineffectiveness of egg-loosening products. Knockdown resistance (kdr as the genetic mechanism making the lice nerves insensitive to permethrin is discussed along with the surprising contrary clinical evidence from Europe about efficacy of permethrin in children with head lice carrying kdr-like gene. The review also presents a brief account of insects as vectors of diseases and ends with discussion of prevention of insect bites and some

  8. A distinct role of the queen in coordinated workload and soil distribution in eusocial naked mole-rats.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nobuyuki Kutsukake

    Full Text Available We investigated how group members achieve collective decision-making, by considering individual intrinsic behavioural rules and behavioural mechanisms for maintaining social integration. Using a simulated burrow environment, we investigated the behavioural rules of coordinated workload for soil distribution in a eusocial mammal, the naked mole-rat (Heterocephalus glaber. We tested two predictions regarding a distinct role of the queen, a socially dominant individual in the caste system: the presence of a queen would increase the workload of other caste individuals, and the cues by a queen would affect the soil distribution. In experiment 1, we placed four individuals of various castes from the same colony into an experimental burrow. Workers exhibited the highest frequency of workload compared to other castes. The presence of a queen activated the workload by other individuals. Individuals showed a consistent workload in a particular direction so as to bias the soil distribution. These results suggest that individuals have a consensus on soil distribution and that the queen plays a distinct role. In experiment 2, we placed the odour of a queen in one of four cells and observed its effect on other individuals' workload and soil distribution. Relative to other cells, individuals frequently dug in the queen cell so the amount of soil in the queen cell decreased. These results suggest that queen odour is an important cue in coordinated workload and soil distribution in this species.

  9. Evolution of social behaviour in the primitively eusocial wasp Ropalidia marginata: do we need to look beyond kin selection?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gadagkar, Raghavendra

    2016-02-05

    Ropalidia marginata is a primitively eusocial wasp widely distributed in peninsular India. Although solitary females found a small proportion of nests, the vast majority of new nests are founded by small groups of females. In such multiple foundress nests, a single dominant female functions as the queen and lays eggs, while the rest function as sterile workers and care for the queen's brood. Previous attempts to understand the evolution of social behaviour and altruism in this species have employed inclusive fitness theory (kin selection) as a guiding framework. Although inclusive fitness theory is quite successful in explaining the high propensity of the wasps to found nests in groups, several features of their social organization suggest that forces other than kin selection may also have played a significant role in the evolution of this species. These features include lowering of genetic relatedness owing to polyandry and serial polygyny, nest foundation by unrelated individuals, acceptance of young non-nest-mates, a combination of well-developed nest-mate recognition and lack of intra-colony kin recognition, a combination of meek and docile queens and a decentralized self-organized work force, long reproductive queues with cryptic heir designates and conflict-free queen succession, all resulting in extreme intra-colony cooperation and inter-colony conflict. © 2016 The Author(s).

  10. Sex- and brain region-specific patterns of gene expression associated with socially-mediated puberty in a eusocial mammal.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariela Faykoo-Martinez

    Full Text Available The social environment can alter pubertal timing through neuroendocrine mechanisms that are not fully understood; it is thought that stress hormones (e.g., glucocorticoids or corticotropin-releasing hormone influence the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis to inhibit puberty. Here, we use the eusocial naked mole-rat, a unique species in which social interactions in a colony (i.e. dominance of a breeding female suppress puberty in subordinate animals. Removing subordinate naked mole-rats from this social context initiates puberty, allowing for experimental control of pubertal timing. The present study quantified gene expression for reproduction- and stress-relevant genes acting upstream of gonadotropin-releasing hormone in brain regions with reproductive and social functions in pre-pubertal, post-pubertal, and opposite sex-paired animals (which are in various stages of pubertal transition. Results indicate sex differences in patterns of neural gene expression. Known functions of genes in brain suggest stress as a key contributing factor in regulating male pubertal delay. Network analysis implicates neurokinin B (Tac3 in the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus as a key node in this pathway. Results also suggest an unappreciated role for the nucleus accumbens in regulating puberty.

  11. Evolution of social behaviour in the primitively eusocial wasp Ropalidia marginata: do we need to look beyond kin selection?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gadagkar, Raghavendra

    2016-01-01

    Ropalidia marginata is a primitively eusocial wasp widely distributed in peninsular India. Although solitary females found a small proportion of nests, the vast majority of new nests are founded by small groups of females. In such multiple foundress nests, a single dominant female functions as the queen and lays eggs, while the rest function as sterile workers and care for the queen's brood. Previous attempts to understand the evolution of social behaviour and altruism in this species have employed inclusive fitness theory (kin selection) as a guiding framework. Although inclusive fitness theory is quite successful in explaining the high propensity of the wasps to found nests in groups, several features of their social organization suggest that forces other than kin selection may also have played a significant role in the evolution of this species. These features include lowering of genetic relatedness owing to polyandry and serial polygyny, nest foundation by unrelated individuals, acceptance of young non-nest-mates, a combination of well-developed nest-mate recognition and lack of intra-colony kin recognition, a combination of meek and docile queens and a decentralized self-organized work force, long reproductive queues with cryptic heir designates and conflict-free queen succession, all resulting in extreme intra-colony cooperation and inter-colony conflict. PMID:26729933

  12. The Sterile Insect Technique

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kiragu, J.

    2006-01-01

    Insect pests have caused an increasing problem in agriculture and human health through crop losses and disease transmission to man and livestock. Intervention to ensure food security and human health has relied on Integrated Pest Management (IPM) strategies to keep the pests population below economic injury levels. IPM integrate a variety of methods, but there has been over-reliance on chemical control following the discovery of insecticidal properties of DDT. It is now realized that, maintaining pest populations at controlled levels is unsustainable and eradication options is now being considered. Although the Sterile Insect Technique(SIT) could be used for insect suppression, it is gaining favour in the elimination (eradication) of the target pest population through Areawide-based IPM (Author)

  13. The Nuclear and Mitochondrial Genomes of the Facultatively Eusocial Orchid Bee Euglossa dilemma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Philipp Brand

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Bees provide indispensable pollination services to both agricultural crops and wild plant populations, and several species of bees have become important models for the study of learning and memory, plant–insect interactions, and social behavior. Orchid bees (Apidae: Euglossini are especially important to the fields of pollination ecology, evolution, and species conservation. Here we report the nuclear and mitochondrial genome sequences of the orchid bee Euglossa dilemma Bembé & Eltz. E. dilemma was selected because it is widely distributed, highly abundant, and it was recently naturalized in the southeastern United States. We provide a high-quality assembly of the 3.3 Gb genome, and an official gene set of 15,904 gene annotations. We find high conservation of gene synteny with the honey bee throughout 80 MY of divergence time. This genomic resource represents the first draft genome of the orchid bee genus Euglossa, and the first draft orchid bee mitochondrial genome, thus representing a valuable resource to the research community.

  14. Insect Repellents: Protect Your Child from Insect Bites

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Español Text Size Email Print Share Choosing an Insect Repellent for Your Child Page Content Mosquitoes, biting ... sunscreen needs to be reapplied often. Reactions to Insect Repellents If you suspect that your child is ...

  15. Sterile insect technique and radiation in insect control

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1982-01-01

    Out of 39 papers and 6 summaries of the poster presentations published in this proceeding series, 23 respectively fall within the INIS subject scope. Four main topics were covered: a review of the sterile insect technique against various insect pests; its application to tsetse flies in eradication programmes; quality control of mass-reared insects for release; and the development of genetic approaches to insect mass rearing and control. Other topics emphasized integrated pest management, computer models and radioisotope labelling

  16. The evolution of extreme altruism and inequality in insect societies

    OpenAIRE

    Ratnieks, Francis L. W.; Helanterä, Heikki

    2009-01-01

    In eusocial organisms, some individuals specialize in reproduction and others in altruistic helping. The evolution of eusociality is, therefore, also the evolution of remarkable inequality. For example, a colony of honeybees (Apis mellifera) may contain 50 000 females all of whom can lay eggs. But 100 per cent of the females and 99.9 per cent of the males are offspring of the queen. How did such extremes evolve? Phylogenetic analyses show that high relatedness was almost certainly necessary f...

  17. Gut microbes may facilitate insect herbivory of chemically defended plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammer, Tobin J; Bowers, M Deane

    2015-09-01

    The majority of insect species consume plants, many of which produce chemical toxins that defend their tissues from attack. How then are herbivorous insects able to develop on a potentially poisonous diet? While numerous studies have focused on the biochemical counter-adaptations to plant toxins rooted in the insect genome, a separate body of research has recently emphasized the role of microbial symbionts, particularly those inhabiting the gut, in plant-insect interactions. Here we outline the "gut microbial facilitation hypothesis," which proposes that variation among herbivores in their ability to consume chemically defended plants can be due, in part, to variation in their associated microbial communities. More specifically, different microbes may be differentially able to detoxify compounds toxic to the insect, or be differentially resistant to the potential antimicrobial effects of some compounds. Studies directly addressing this hypothesis are relatively few, but microbe-plant allelochemical interactions have been frequently documented from non-insect systems-such as soil and the human gut-and thus illustrate their potential importance for insect herbivory. We discuss the implications of this hypothesis for insect diversification and coevolution with plants; for example, evolutionary transitions to host plant groups with novel allelochemicals could be initiated by heritable changes to the insect microbiome. Furthermore, the ecological implications extend beyond the plant and insect herbivore to higher trophic levels. Although the hidden nature of microbes and plant allelochemicals make their interactions difficult to detect, recent molecular and experimental techniques should enable research on this neglected, but likely important, aspect of insect-plant biology.

  18. Flying insects and Campylobacter

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hald, Birthe; Sommer, Helle Mølgaard; Skovgård, Henrik

    Campylobacter in flies Flies of the Muscidae family forage on all kind of faeces – various fly species have different preferences. M domestica prefer pigs, horses and cattle faeces, animals which are all known to frequently excrete Campylobacter. As a result, the insects pick up pathogenic micro...

  19. Insects and sex

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Beukeboom, Leo

    2005-01-01

    Most organisms reproduce sexually, but the evolution of sexual reproduction is not yet well understood. Sexual reproduction leads to new variation and adaptations to the environment, but sex is also costly. Some insects reproduce without sex through parthenogenesis or paedogenesis. Almost all sexual

  20. Dispersal of forest insects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mcmanus, M. L.

    1979-01-01

    Dispersal flights of selected species of forest insects which are associated with periodic outbreaks of pests that occur over large contiguous forested areas are discussed. Gypsy moths, spruce budworms, and forest tent caterpillars were studied for their massive migrations in forested areas. Results indicate that large dispersals into forested areas are due to the females, except in the case of the gypsy moth.

  1. Investigation--Insects!

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fay, Janice

    2000-01-01

    Presents activities on insects for second grade students. In the first activity, students build a butterfly garden. In the second activity, students observe stimuli reactions with mealworms in the larval stage. Describes the assessment process and discusses the effects of pollution on living things. (YDS)

  2. Insect flight muscle metabolism

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Horst, D.J. van der; Beenakkers, A.M.Th.; Marrewijk, W.J.A. van

    1984-01-01

    The flight of an insect is of a very complicated and extremely energy-demanding nature. Wingbeat frequency may differ between various species but values up to 1000 Hz have been measured. Consequently metabolic activity may be very high during flight and the transition from rest to flight is

  3. Insects, isotopes and radiations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lingkvist, D.A.

    1987-01-01

    The IAEA activity on coordinating the IAEA member-state efforts in the field of pest control is considered. A complex program of agricultural pest control (IPM), applied in many parts of the world is developed. The program provides for the use of natural means of control and cases of critical pest numbers-the use of insecticides. When controlling certain types of insects it is advisable to apply the 'large area control' methods which provide for the insect destruction in places of their concentration prior to migration. Methods of pest control over large areas also include radiation sexual sterilization method (SSM), application of insect phoromons (sexual attractants) to prevent mating, other types of chemical attractants, traps, mass cultivation and reproduction of parasite plants and animals, destroying insects, as well as improvement of host-plant resistance. A great attention is paid to isotope and radiation application in pest control (labelling, sexual sterilization using ionising radiation, radiation application in genetic engineering, mutant plant cultivation)

  4. Anaphylaxis and insect allergy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demain, Jeffrey G; Minaei, Ashley A; Tracy, James M

    2010-08-01

    Anaphylaxis is an acute-onset and potentially life-threatening allergic reaction that can be caused by numerous allergic triggers including stinging insects. This review focuses on recent advances, natural history, risk factors and therapeutic considerations. Recent work suggests that concerns over insect allergy diagnosis continue to exist. This is especially true with individuals who have a convincing history of a serious life-threatening anaphylactic event, but lack the necessary diagnostic criteria of venom-specific IgE by skin test or in-vitro diagnostic methods to confirm the diagnosis. The role of occult mastocytosis or increased basophile reactivity may play a role in this subset population. Additionally, epinephrine continues to be underutilized as the primary acute intervention for an anaphylactic reaction in the emergent setting. The incidence of anaphylaxis continues to rise across all demographic groups, especially those less than 20 years of age. Fortunately, the fatalities related to anaphylaxis appear to have decreased over the past decades. Our understanding of various triggers, associated risk factors, as well as an improved understanding and utilization of biological markers such as serum tryptase have improved. Our ability to treat insect anaphylaxis by venom immunotherapy is highly effective. Unfortunately, anaphylaxis continues to be underappreciated and undertreated especially in regard to insect sting anaphylaxis. This includes the appropriate use of injectable epinephrine as the primary acute management tool. These findings suggest that continued education of the general population, primary care healthcare providers and emergency departments is required.

  5. Broadening insect gastronomy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Halloran, Afton Marina Szasz; Münke, Christopher; Vantomme, Paul

    2015-01-01

    In recent years there has been a trend among chefs to diversify their ingredients and techniques, drawing inspiration from other cultures and creating new foods by blending this knowledge with the flavours of their local region. Edible insects, with their plethora of taste, aromatic, textural and...

  6. Culture of insect tissues

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cestari, A.N.; Simoes, L.C.G.

    1978-01-01

    Several aspects are discussed related to the behavior of politenic chromosomes from Rhyncosciara salivary glands kept in culture during different periods of time, without interference of insect hormones. Nucleic acid-and protein synthesis in isolated nuclei and chromosomes are also investigated. Autoradiographic techniques and radioactive precursors for nucleic acids and proteins are used in the research. (M.A.) [pt

  7. Insect (food) allergy and allergens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Gier, Steffie; Verhoeckx, Kitty

    2018-05-03

    Insects represent an alternative for meat and fish in satisfying the increasing demand for sustainable sources of nutrition. Approximately two billion people globally consume insects. They are particularly popular in Asia, Latin America, and Africa. Most research on insect allergy has focussed on occupational or inhalation allergy. Research on insect food safety, including allergenicity, is therefore of great importance. The objective of this review is to provide an overview of cases reporting allergy following insect ingestion, studies on food allergy to insects, proteins involved in insect allergy including cross-reactive proteins, and the possibility to alter the allergenic potential of insects by food processing and digestion. Food allergy to insects has been described for silkworm, mealworm, caterpillars, Bruchus lentis, sago worm, locust, grasshopper, cicada, bee, Clanis bilineata, and the food additive carmine, which is derived from female Dactylopius coccus insects. For cockroaches, which are also edible insects, only studies on inhalation allergy have been described. Various insect allergens have been identified including tropomyosin and arginine kinase, which are both pan-allergens known for their cross-reactivity with homologous proteins in crustaceans and house dust mite. Cross-reactivity and/or co-sensitization of insect tropomyosin and arginine kinase has been demonstrated in house dust mite and seafood (e.g. prawn, shrimp) allergic patients. In addition, many other (allergenic) species (various non-edible insects, arachnids, mites, seafoods, mammals, nematoda, trematoda, plants, and fungi) have been identified with sequence alignment analysis to show potential cross-reactivity with allergens of edible insects. It was also shown that thermal processing and digestion did not eliminate insect protein allergenicity. Although purified natural allergens are scarce and yields are low, recombinant allergens from cockroach, silkworm, and Indian mealmoth are

  8. Edible insects of Northern Angola

    OpenAIRE

    Lautenschläger,Thea; Neinhuis,Christoph; Monizi,Mawunu; Mandombe,José Lau; Förster,Anke; Henle,Thomas; Nuss,Matthias

    2017-01-01

    From 2013–2017, we accompanied and interviewed local people harvesting edible insects in the Northern Angolan province of Uíge. Insect and host plant samples were collected for species identification and nutritive analyses. Additionally, live caterpillars were taken to feed and keep until pupation and eclosion of the imago, necessary for morphological species identification. Altogether, 18 insect species eaten by humans were recorded. Twenty four edible insect species were formerly known from...

  9. Pathogen avoidance by insect predators

    OpenAIRE

    Meyling, Nicolai V.; Ormond, Emma; Roy, Helen E.; Pell, Judith K.

    2008-01-01

    Insects can detect cues related to the risk of attack by their natural enemies. Pathogens are among the natural enemies of insects and entomopathogenic fungi attack a wide array of host species. Evidence documents that social insects in particular have adapted behavioural mechanisms to avoid infection by fungal pathogens. These mechanisms are referred to as 'behavioural resistance'. However, there is little evidence for similar adaptations in non-social insects. We have conducted experime...

  10. Protecting Yourself from Stinging Insects

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... from St ing in g In sect s Flying Insects Outdoor workers are at risk of being stung by flying insects (bees, wasps, and hornets) and fire ants. While ... If a worker is stung by a stinging insect: ■■ Have someone stay with the worker to be ...

  11. The promise of insect genomics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Grimmelikhuijzen, Cornelis J P; Cazzamali, Giuseppe; Williamson, Michael

    2007-01-01

    Insects are the largest animal group in the world and are ecologically and economically extremely important. This importance of insects is reflected by the existence of currently 24 insect genome projects. Our perspective discusses the state-of-the-art of these genome projects and the impacts...

  12. Melliferous insects and the uses assigned to their products in the northern Yungas of Salta, Argentina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flores, Fabio Fernando; Hilgert, Norma Inés; Lupo, Liliana Concepción

    2018-04-11

    The order Hymenoptera comprises melliferous insects (bees, wasps and bumblebees); among them, stingless bees comprise a diverse group of eusocial insects present in tropical and subtropical areas. Of a total of approximately 500 species, 400 are found in the Neotropics. On the continent of America, before the introduction of Apis mellifera, these insects represented the main source of honey and wax. In Argentina, ethnobiological investigations had been carried out on this group of insects, principally in the Atlantic Forest and Chaco regions. Out of a total of 33 species, only 14 were recorded for use or breeding. In the Yungas, however, there are no ethnobiological studies analyzing this group of species, although the use of their products is mentioned in different ethnobotanical works. This paper studies the knowledge and uses of melliferous insects by the inhabitants of the village of Baritú and surrounding. Information on location, management and duties assigned (e.g., preparation and administration) to deal with bee products like honey, pollen, wax and propolis was obtained through semi-structured interviews. Besides, reference material was collected to identify melliferous insects known and used in the region. Fifteen ethnospecies were identified and grouped locally according to their defensive behavior. The culturally most important species is the stingless bee Plebeia sp. nov.-mansita-, in terms of frequency of citations and diversity of uses, and among those that sting, the honeybee Apis mellifera-extranjera-. Honey, pollen, wax, and propolis of Plebeia sp. nov. had the highest current frequency of use. Honey is used in food (incorporated at pure state, as a complement and in drinks), as nutraceutical food and in medicinal preparations. In addition, it is an important resource for marketing during the warm season, infusions being the main mode of administration. Pollen is used as a supplement for food and alcoholic drinks, wax mainly in candle making, and

  13. Cleptobiosis in Social Insects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael D. Breed

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available In this review of cleptobiosis, we not only focus on social insects, but also consider broader issues and concepts relating to the theft of food among animals. Cleptobiosis occurs when members of a species steal food, or sometimes nesting materials or other items of value, either from members of the same or a different species. This simple definition is not universally used, and there is some terminological confusion among cleptobiosis, cleptoparasitism, brood parasitism, and inquilinism. We first discuss the definitions of these terms and the confusion that arises from varying usage of the words. We consider that cleptobiosis usually is derived evolutionarily from established foraging behaviors. Cleptobionts can succeed by deception or by force, and we review the literature on cleptobiosis by deception or force in social insects. We focus on the best known examples of cleptobiosis, the ectatommine ant Ectatomma ruidum, the harvester ant Messor capitatus, and the stingless bee Lestrimellita limão. Cleptobiosis is facilitated either by deception or physical force, and we discuss both mechanisms. Part of this discussion is an analysis of the ecological implications (competition by interference and the evolutionary effects of cleptobiosis. We conclude with a comment on how cleptobiosis can increase the risk of disease or parasite spread among colonies of social insects.

  14. Molecular characterization of the gene feminizer in the stingless bee Melipona interrupta (Hymenoptera: Apidae) reveals association to sex and caste development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brito, Diana V; Silva, Carlos Gustavo N; Hasselmann, Martin; Viana, Luciana S; Astolfi-Filho, Spartaco; Carvalho-Zilse, Gislene A

    2015-11-01

    In highly eusocial insects, development of reproductive traits are regulated not only by sex determination pathway, but it also depends on caste fate. The molecular basis of both mechanisms in stingless bees and possible interaction with each other is still obscure. Here, we investigate sex determination in Melipona interrupta, focusing on characterization and expression analysis of the feminizer gene (Mi-fem), and its association to a major component of caste determination, the juvenile hormone (JH). We present evidence that Mi-fem mRNA is sex-specifically spliced in which only the female splice variant encodes the full length protein, following the same principle known for other bee species. We quantified Mi-fem expression among developmental stages, sexes and castes. Mi-fem expression varies considerably throughout development, with higher expression levels in embryos. Also, fem levels in pupae and newly emerged adults were significantly higher in queens than workers and males. Finally, we ectopically applied JH in cocoon spinning larvae, which correspond to the time window where queen/worker phenotypes diverge. We observed a significantly increase in Mi-fem expression compared to control groups. Since up to 100% of females turn into queens when treated with JH (while control groups are composed mainly of workers), we propose that fem might act to regulate queens' development. Our findings provide support for the conserved regulatory function of fem in Melipona bees and demonstrate a significant correlation between key elements of sex and caste determination pathways, opening the avenue to further investigate the molecular basis of these complex traits. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Edible insects are the future?

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Huis, Arnold

    2016-08-01

    The global increase in demand for meat and the limited land area available prompt the search for alternative protein sources. Also the sustainability of meat production has been questioned. Edible insects as an alternative protein source for human food and animal feed are interesting in terms of low greenhouse gas emissions, high feed conversion efficiency, low land use, and their ability to transform low value organic side streams into high value protein products. More than 2000 insect species are eaten mainly in tropical regions. The role of edible insects in the livelihoods and nutrition of people in tropical countries is discussed, but this food source is threatened. In the Western world, there is an increasing interest in edible insects, and examples are given. Insects as feed, in particular as aquafeed, have a large potential. Edible insects have about the same protein content as conventional meat and more PUFA. They may also have some beneficial health effects. Edible insects need to be processed and turned into palatable dishes. Food safety may be affected by toxicity of insects, contamination with pathogens, spoilage during conservation and allergies. Consumer attitude is a major issue in the Western world and a number of strategies are proposed to encourage insect consumption. We discuss research pathways to make insects a viable sector in food and agriculture: an appropriate disciplinary focus, quantifying its importance, comparing its nutritional value to conventional protein sources, environmental benefits, safeguarding food safety, optimising farming, consumer acceptance and gastronomy.

  16. Ovarian development in a primitively eusocial wasp: social interactions affect behaviorally dominant and subordinate wasps in opposite directions relative to solitary females.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shukla, Shantanu; Pareek, Vidhi; Gadagkar, Raghavendra

    2014-07-01

    In many primitively eusocial wasp species new nests are founded either by a single female or by a small group of females. In the single foundress nests, the lone female develops her ovaries, lays eggs as well as tends her brood. In multiple foundress nests social interactions, especially dominance-subordinate interactions, result in only one 'dominant' female developing her ovaries and laying eggs. Ovaries of the remaining 'subordinate' cofoundresses remain suppressed and these individuals function as workers and tend the dominant's brood. Using the tropical, primitively eusocial polistine wasp Ropalidia marginata and by comparing wasps held in isolation and those kept as pairs in the laboratory, we demonstrate that social interactions affect ovarian development of dominant and subordinate wasps among the pairs in opposite directions, suppressing the ovaries of the subordinate member of the pair below that of solitary wasps and boosting the ovaries of dominant member of the pair above that of solitary females. In addition to being of physiological interest, such mirror image effects of aggression on the ovaries of the aggressors and their victims, suggest yet another mechanism by which subordinates can enhance their indirect fitness and facilitate the evolution of worker behavior by kin selection. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. ORAL INSECT REPELLENTS - INSECT TASTE RECEPTORS AND THEIR ACTION,

    Science.gov (United States)

    CULICIDAE, * CHEMORECEPTORS ), INSECT REPELLENTS, ELECTROPHYSIOLOGY, STIMULATION(PHYSIOLOGY), ELECTROLYTES(PHYSIOLOGY), BLOOD, INGESTION(PHYSIOLOGY), REPRODUCTION(PHYSIOLOGY), NUTRITION, ENTOMOLOGY, AEDES, MOUTH

  18. Nestmate recognition in social insects and the role of hydrocarbons

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    van Zweden, Jelle Stijn; D'Ettorre, Patrizia

    2010-01-01

    A unique and critical analysis of the wealth of research conducted on the biology, biochemistry and chemical ecology of the rapidly growing field of insect cuticular hydrocarbons. Authored by leading experts in their respective fields, the twenty chapters show the complexity that has been...... discovered in the nature and role of hydrocarbons in entomology. Covers, in great depth, aspects of chemistry (structures, qualitative and quantitative analysis), biochemistry (biosynthesis, molecular biology, genetics, evolution), physiology, taxonomy, and ecology. Clearly presents to the reader the array...... of data, ideas, insights and historical disagreements that have been accumulated during the past half century. An emphasis is placed on the role of insect hydrocarbons in chemical communication, especially among the social insects. Includes the first review on the chemical synthesis of insect hydrocarbons...

  19. An extreme case of plant-insect codiversification

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cruaud, Astrid; Rønsted, Nina; Chanterasuwan, Bhanumas

    2012-01-01

    It is thought that speciation in phytophagous insects is often due to colonization of novel host plants, because radiations of plant and insect lineages are typically asynchronous. Recent phylogenetic comparisons have supported this model of diversification for both insect herbivores...... and specialized pollinators. An exceptional case where contemporaneous plant-insect diversification might be expected is the obligate mutualism between fig trees (Ficus species, Moraceae) and their pollinating wasps (Agaonidae, Hymenoptera). The ubiquity and ecological significance of this mutualism in tropical...... for this study. We also developed a new analytical tool, Jane 2, for event-based phylogenetic reconciliation analysis of very large data sets. Separate Bayesian phylogenetic analyses for figs and fig wasps under relaxed molecular clock assumptions indicate Cretaceous diversification of crown groups...

  20. Phenological, but not social, variation associated with climate differences in a eusocial sweat bee, Halictus ligatus, nesting in southern Ontario

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miriam H. Richards

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Studies of annual and geographic variation in eusocial bee populations suggest that more stringent environmental conditions result in stronger reproductive skew favouring queens, while moderate conditions favour increasing worker reproduction. To test these predictions, we compared the phenology and colony development of H. ligatus nesting in St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada to a previously studied aggregation 90 km north of St. Catharines, in Victoria, Ontario. Despite the close proximity of these two locations, St. Catharines has markedly shorter winters and longer summers. Comparisons between St. Catharines in 2006 and Victoria in the 1980s and 1990s incorporate both geographic differences in climate and temporal differences due to climate change. We predicted that St. Catharines foundress queens should emerge from hibernation and initiate nests earlier in spring, giving them time to produce more workers. Since earlier studies indicated that queens have difficulty suppressing worker reproduction in larger colonies, we also predicted higher rates of worker ovarian development in St. Catharines. In spring and summer 2006, we excavated 65 H. ligatus nests, comparing their contents to 713 specimens collected in pan traps. As predicted, nests were initiated about a month earlier in St. Catharines than in Victoria, but contrary to prediction, fewer workers were produced in St. Catharines. St. Catharines workers were just as likely to have developed ovaries as Victoria workers. About 40% of St. Catharines workers were classified as reproductive, and larger reproductive workers tended to have higher ovarian scores. Early queen mortality in the longer nest cycle of St. Catharines bees may have enhanced opportunities for worker reproduction despite their smaller numbers. Novel features of H. ligatus sociobiology in St. Catharines included evidence that queens can initiate new nests following the loss of their first brood, overlap between worker and gyne

  1. Insects vis a vis radiations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Srivastava, Meera

    2014-01-01

    Insects have turned out to be much more radiation resistant. For most insects a dose of about 500-700 Gy is required to kill them within a few weeks of exposure; although cockroaches require 900-1000 Gy. Killing insects in less than a few days requires much higher doses. These doses are for mature insects, the immature stages of some insects can be killed by doses as low as 40 Gy. Some insects can be sterilized at even lower doses, and this has application in insect control. Screw-worms, for example, can be sterilized with doses of 25-50 Gy. By contrast, doses as low as 3 Gy caused death of humans in Hiroshima and Nagasaki and doses of about 6 Gy caused death of fire fighters in the Chernobyl accident. It is not exactly certain what the basis is for the resistance of insects to ionizing radiation. It is not animal size by itself, nor lack of penetration. It is also not because of few dividing cells as these are more radiosensitive than non-dividing ones. The speculation that insects might have lower oxygen tensions, and the lack of oxygen is known to protect cells from radiation also does not work. Insect cells might have an enhanced capacity to repair radiation damage also could not be proven. The number of chromosomes influenced radio-sensitivity, and that insects had fewer chromosomes could be true. The radiation resistance is inherent to the cells, since cells derived from insects are also radiation resistant when grown in cell culture. For example, a dose of 60 Gy is required to produce a 80% kill of insect cells, while doses of 1-2 Gy are sufficient to generate this level of killing in mammalian cells. But, nevertheless, according to recent researches, radiation from Japan's leaking Fukushima nuclear plant has caused mutations in some butterflies. It is therefore clear that insects are resistant to ionizing radiation and that this resistance is an inherent property of their cells. But it is not clear exactly what the basis of this cellular resistance is

  2. Sterilizing insects with ionizing radiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bakri, A.; Mehta, K.; Lance, D.R.

    2005-01-01

    Exposure to ionizing radiation is currently the method of choice for rendering insects reproductively sterile for area-wide integrated pest management (AW-IPM) programmes that integrate the sterile insect technique (SIT). Gamma radiation from isotopic sources (cobalt-60 or caesium-137) is most often used, but high-energy electrons and X-rays are other practical options. Insect irradiation is safe and reliable when established safety and quality-assurance guidelines are followed. The key processing parameter is absorbed dose, which must be tightly controlled to ensure that treated insects are sufficiently sterile in their reproductive cells and yet able to compete for mates with wild insects. To that end, accurate dosimetry (measurement of absorbed dose) is critical. Irradiation data generated since the 1950s, covering over 300 arthropod species, indicate that the dose needed for sterilization of arthropods varies from less than 5 Gy for blaberid cockroaches to 300 Gy or more for some arctiid and pyralid moths. Factors such as oxygen level, and insect age and stage during irradiation, and many others, influence both the absorbed dose required for sterilization and the viability of irradiated insects. Consideration of these factors in the design of irradiation protocols can help to find a balance between the sterility and competitiveness of insects produced for programmes that release sterile insects. Many programmes apply 'precautionary' radiation doses to increase the security margin of sterilization, but this overdosing often lowers competitiveness to the point where the overall induced sterility in the wild population is reduced significantly. (author)

  3. Hydrodynamics of insect spermatozoa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pak, On Shun; Lauga, Eric

    2010-11-01

    Microorganism motility plays important roles in many biological processes including reproduction. Many microorganisms propel themselves by propagating traveling waves along their flagella. Depending on the species, propagation of planar waves (e.g. Ceratium) and helical waves (e.g. Trichomonas) were observed in eukaryotic flagellar motion, and hydrodynamic models for both were proposed in the past. However, the motility of insect spermatozoa remains largely unexplored. An interesting morphological feature of such cells, first observed in Tenebrio molitor and Bacillus rossius, is the double helical deformation pattern along the flagella, which is characterized by the presence of two superimposed helical flagellar waves (one with a large amplitude and low frequency, and the other with a small amplitude and high frequency). Here we present the first hydrodynamic investigation of the locomotion of insect spermatozoa. The swimming kinematics, trajectories and hydrodynamic efficiency of the swimmer are computed based on the prescribed double helical deformation pattern. We then compare our theoretical predictions with experimental measurements, and explore the dependence of the swimming performance on the geometric and dynamical parameters.

  4. Evidence for inhibition of cholinesterases in insect and mammalian nervous systems by the insect repellent deet

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dimitrov Mitko

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background N,N-Diethyl-3-methylbenzamide (deet remains the gold standard for insect repellents. About 200 million people use it every year and over 8 billion doses have been applied over the past 50 years. Despite the widespread and increased interest in the use of deet in public health programmes, controversies remain concerning both the identification of its target sites at the olfactory system and its mechanism of toxicity in insects, mammals and humans. Here, we investigated the molecular target site for deet and the consequences of its interactions with carbamate insecticides on the cholinergic system. Results By using toxicological, biochemical and electrophysiological techniques, we show that deet is not simply a behaviour-modifying chemical but that it also inhibits cholinesterase activity, in both insect and mammalian neuronal preparations. Deet is commonly used in combination with insecticides and we show that deet has the capacity to strengthen the toxicity of carbamates, a class of insecticides known to block acetylcholinesterase. Conclusion These findings question the safety of deet, particularly in combination with other chemicals, and they highlight the importance of a multidisciplinary approach to the development of safer insect repellents for use in public health.

  5. Love Games that Insects Play

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Home; Journals; Resonance – Journal of Science Education; Volume 3; Issue 1. Love Games that Insects Play - The Evolution of Sexual Behaviours in Insects ... Author Affiliations. K N Ganeshaiah1. Department of Genetics & Plant Breeding University of Agricultural Sciences, GKVK Bangalore 560 065, India ...

  6. Plant defense against insect herbivores

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fürstenberg-Hägg, Joel; Zagrobelny, Mika; Bak, Søren

    2013-01-01

    , defense compounds. These bioactive specialized plant defense compounds may repel or intoxicate insects, while defense proteins often interfere with their digestion. Volatiles are released upon herbivory to repel herbivores, attract predators or for communication between leaves or plants, and to induce......Plants have been interacting with insects for several hundred million years, leading to complex defense approaches against various insect feeding strategies. Some defenses are constitutive while others are induced, although the insecticidal defense compound or protein classes are often similar...... defense responses. Plants also apply morphological features like waxes, trichomes and latices to make the feeding more difficult for the insects. Extrafloral nectar, food bodies and nesting or refuge sites are produced to accommodate and feed the predators of the herbivores. Meanwhile, herbivorous insects...

  7. Drifting behaviour as an alternative reproductive strategy for social insect workers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blacher, Pierre; Yagound, Boris; Lecoutey, Emmanuel; Devienne, Paul; Chameron, Stéphane; Châline, Nicolas

    2013-01-01

    Restricted reproduction is traditionally posited as the defining feature of eusocial insect workers. The discovery of worker reproduction in foreign colonies challenges this view and suggests that workers’ potential to pursue selfish interests may be higher than previously believed. However, whether such reproductive behaviour truly relies on a reproductive decision is still unknown. Workers’ reproductive decisions thus need to be investigated to assess the extent of workers’ reproductive options. Here, we show in the bumblebee Bombus terrestris that drifting is a distinct strategy by which fertile workers circumvent competition in their nest and reproduce in foreign colonies. By monitoring workers’ movements between colonies, we show that drifting is a remarkably dynamic behaviour, widely expressed by both fertile and infertile workers. We demonstrate that a high fertility is, however, central in determining the propensity of workers to enter foreign colonies as well as their subsequent reproduction in host colonies. Moreover, our study shows that the drifting of fertile workers reflects complex decision-making processes associated with in-nest reproductive competition. This novel finding therefore adds to our modern conception of cooperation by showing the previously overlooked importance of alternative strategies which enable workers to assert their reproductive interests. PMID:24068358

  8. Diversity and functions of protein glycosylation in insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walski, Tomasz; De Schutter, Kristof; Van Damme, Els J M; Smagghe, Guy

    2017-04-01

    The majority of proteins is modified with carbohydrate structures. This modification, called glycosylation, was shown to be crucial for protein folding, stability and subcellular location, as well as protein-protein interactions, recognition and signaling. Protein glycosylation is involved in multiple physiological processes, including embryonic development, growth, circadian rhythms, cell attachment as well as maintenance of organ structure, immunity and fertility. Although the general principles of glycosylation are similar among eukaryotic organisms, insects synthesize a distinct repertoire of glycan structures compared to plants and vertebrates. Consequently, a number of unique insect glycans mediate functions specific to this class of invertebrates. For instance, the core α1,3-fucosylation of N-glycans is absent in vertebrates, while in insects this modification is crucial for the development of wings and the nervous system. At present, most of the data on insect glycobiology comes from research in Drosophila. Yet, progressively more information on the glycan structures and the importance of glycosylation in other insects like beetles, caterpillars, aphids and bees is becoming available. This review gives a summary of the current knowledge and recent progress related to glycan diversity and function(s) of protein glycosylation in insects. We focus on N- and O-glycosylation, their synthesis, physiological role(s), as well as the molecular and biochemical basis of these processes. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Insect anaphylaxis: addressing clinical challenges.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tracy, James M; Lewis, Elena J; Demain, Jeffrey G

    2011-08-01

    Few allergic reactions are as potentially life-threatening, or frightening to the patient, as anaphylaxis. Food, medications, and insect stings are the three most common triggers of anaphylaxis, but insect allergy provides the best opportunity to understand the biology of anaphylaxis. If the physician can establish a diagnosis of insect allergy, treatment with nearly 98% effectiveness can be initiated. However, sometimes patients have a compelling history of insect sting anaphylaxis, but negative skin and blood tests. This situation presents us with a fascinating opportunity to understand the biology of insect anaphylaxis. Recent and ongoing work shows that occult mast cell disease may be critical in insect anaphylaxis. Mastocytosis, serum tryptase and basophil biology are key elements; genetic markers may potentially help us diagnose at-risk individuals and determine proper treatment. Understanding basophil activation may play an additional role both in diagnosis and knowing when therapy might be terminated. Mast cell disease, serum tryptase and basophil biology are providing an opportunity to better understand and manage insect allergy. This evolving understanding should improve long-term management of insect anaphylaxis and help us to better understand the clinical dilemma of appropriate management of the history-positive patient in which testing is unable to detect venom-specific IgE. Furthermore, omalizumab's immunomodulatory effects may play a role in difficult-to-treat insect allergy and mastocytosis. Finally, unrelated to these, but still important as an ongoing risk factor, is the continued underutilization of epinephrine for both acute and long-term management of insect anaphylaxis.

  10. Evolution of SUMO Function and Chain Formation in Insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ureña, Enric; Pirone, Lucia; Chafino, Silvia; Pérez, Coralia; Sutherland, James D; Lang, Valérie; Rodriguez, Manuel S; Lopitz-Otsoa, Fernando; Blanco, Francisco J; Barrio, Rosa; Martín, David

    2016-02-01

    SUMOylation, the covalent binding of Small Ubiquitin-like Modifier (SUMO) to target proteins, is a posttranslational modification that regulates critical cellular processes in eukaryotes. In insects, SUMOylation has been studied in holometabolous species, particularly in the dipteran Drosophila melanogaster, which contains a single SUMO gene (smt3). This has led to the assumption that insects contain a single SUMO gene. However, the analysis of insect genomes shows that basal insects contain two SUMO genes, orthologous to vertebrate SUMO1 and SUMO2/3. Our phylogenetical analysis reveals that the SUMO gene has been duplicated giving rise to SUMO1 and SUMO2/3 families early in Metazoan evolution, and that later in insect evolution the SUMO1 gene has been lost after the Hymenoptera divergence. To explore the consequences of this loss, we have examined the characteristics and different biological functions of the two SUMO genes (SUMO1 and SUMO3) in the hemimetabolous cockroach Blattella germanica and compared them with those of Drosophila Smt3. Here, we show that the metamorphic role of the SUMO genes is evolutionary conserved in insects, although there has been a regulatory switch from SUMO1 in basal insects to SUMO3 in more derived ones. We also show that, unlike vertebrates, insect SUMO3 proteins cannot form polySUMO chains due to the loss of critical lysine residues within the N-terminal part of the protein. Furthermore, the formation of polySUMO chains by expression of ectopic human SUMO3 has a deleterious effect in Drosophila. These findings contribute to the understanding of the functional consequences of the evolution of SUMO genes. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  11. Plant Virus–Insect Vector Interactions: Current and Potential Future Research Directions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dietzgen, Ralf G.; Mann, Krin S.; Johnson, Karyn N.

    2016-01-01

    Acquisition and transmission by an insect vector is central to the infection cycle of the majority of plant pathogenic viruses. Plant viruses can interact with their insect host in a variety of ways including both non-persistent and circulative transmission; in some cases, the latter involves virus replication in cells of the insect host. Replicating viruses can also elicit both innate and specific defense responses in the insect host. A consistent feature is that the interaction of the virus with its insect host/vector requires specific molecular interactions between virus and host, commonly via proteins. Understanding the interactions between plant viruses and their insect host can underpin approaches to protect plants from infection by interfering with virus uptake and transmission. Here, we provide a perspective focused on identifying novel approaches and research directions to facilitate control of plant viruses by better understanding and targeting virus–insect molecular interactions. We also draw parallels with molecular interactions in insect vectors of animal viruses, and consider technical advances for their control that may be more broadly applicable to plant virus vectors. PMID:27834855

  12. Adaptive evolution of mitochondrial energy metabolism genes associated with increased energy demand in flying insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Yunxia; Xu, Shixia; Xu, Junxiao; Guo, Yan; Yang, Guang

    2014-01-01

    Insects are unique among invertebrates for their ability to fly, which raises intriguing questions about how energy metabolism in insects evolved and changed along with flight. Although physiological studies indicated that energy consumption differs between flying and non-flying insects, the evolution of molecular energy metabolism mechanisms in insects remains largely unexplored. Considering that about 95% of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) is supplied by mitochondria via oxidative phosphorylation, we examined 13 mitochondrial protein-encoding genes to test whether adaptive evolution of energy metabolism-related genes occurred in insects. The analyses demonstrated that mitochondrial DNA protein-encoding genes are subject to positive selection from the last common ancestor of Pterygota, which evolved primitive flight ability. Positive selection was also found in insects with flight ability, whereas no significant sign of selection was found in flightless insects where the wings had degenerated. In addition, significant positive selection was also identified in the last common ancestor of Neoptera, which changed its flight mode from direct to indirect. Interestingly, detection of more positively selected genes in indirect flight rather than direct flight insects suggested a stronger selective pressure in insects having higher energy consumption. In conclusion, mitochondrial protein-encoding genes involved in energy metabolism were targets of adaptive evolution in response to increased energy demands that arose during the evolution of flight ability in insects.

  13. Inherited sterility in insects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Carpenter, J.E.; Marec, F.; Bloem, S.

    2005-01-01

    The unique genetic phenomena responsible for inherited sterility (IS) in Lepidoptera and some other arthropods, as compared with full sterility, provide advantages for pest control. Lepidopteran females are usually more sensitive to radiation than males of the same species. This allows the radiation dose to be adjusted to suit programme requirements. When partially sterile males mate with wild females, the radiation-induced deleterious effects are inherited by the F 1 generation. As a result, egg hatch is reduced and the resulting offspring are both highly sterile and predominately male. Compared with the high radiation required to achieve full sterility in Lepidoptera, the lower dose of radiation used to induce F 1 sterility increases the quality and competitiveness of the released insects as measured by improved dispersal after release, increased mating ability, and superior sperm competition. F 1 sterile progeny produced in the field enhance the efficacy of released partially sterile males, and improve compatibility with other pest control strategies. In addition, F 1 sterile progeny can be used to increase the production of natural enemies, and to study the potential host and geographical ranges of exotic lepidopteran pests. (author)

  14. Insect neuropeptides regulating substrate mobilisation

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    1997-09-25

    Sep 25, 1997 ... Insect flight muscles perform their work completely aerobically, and working flight musdes are ... locusts where they are involved in the control of carbohydrate ... the vertebrate hypothalamo/hypophyseal system, and it can.

  15. Environmental RNAi in herbivorous insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivashuta, Sergey; Zhang, Yuanji; Wiggins, B Elizabeth; Ramaseshadri, Partha; Segers, Gerrit C; Johnson, Steven; Meyer, Steve E; Kerstetter, Randy A; McNulty, Brian C; Bolognesi, Renata; Heck, Gregory R

    2015-05-01

    Environmental RNAi (eRNAi) is a sequence-specific regulation of endogenous gene expression in a receptive organism by exogenous double-stranded RNA (dsRNA). Although demonstrated under artificial dietary conditions and via transgenic plant presentations in several herbivorous insects, the magnitude and consequence of exogenous dsRNA uptake and the role of eRNAi remains unknown under natural insect living conditions. Our analysis of coleopteran insects sensitive to eRNAi fed on wild-type plants revealed uptake of plant endogenous long dsRNAs, but not small RNAs. Subsequently, the dsRNAs were processed into 21 nt siRNAs by insects and accumulated in high quantities in insect cells. No accumulation of host plant-derived siRNAs was observed in lepidopteran larvae that are recalcitrant to eRNAi. Stability of ingested dsRNA in coleopteran larval gut followed by uptake and transport from the gut to distal tissues appeared to be enabling factors for eRNAi. Although a relatively large number of distinct coleopteran insect-processed plant-derived siRNAs had sequence complementarity to insect transcripts, the vast majority of the siRNAs were present in relatively low abundance, and RNA-seq analysis did not detect a significant effect of plant-derived siRNAs on insect transcriptome. In summary, we observed a broad genome-wide uptake of plant endogenous dsRNA and subsequent processing of ingested dsRNA into 21 nt siRNAs in eRNAi-sensitive insects under natural feeding conditions. In addition to dsRNA stability in gut lumen and uptake, dosage of siRNAs targeting a given insect transcript is likely an important factor in order to achieve measurable eRNAi-based regulation in eRNAi-competent insects that lack an apparent silencing amplification mechanism. © 2015 Ivashuta et al.; Published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press for the RNA Society.

  16. Social insects inspire human design

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holbrook, C. Tate; Clark, Rebecca M.; Moore, Dani; Overson, Rick P.; Penick, Clint A.; Smith, Adrian A.

    2010-01-01

    The international conference ‘Social Biomimicry: Insect Societies and Human Design’, hosted by Arizona State University, USA, 18–20 February 2010, explored how the collective behaviour and nest architecture of social insects can inspire innovative and effective solutions to human design challenges. It brought together biologists, designers, engineers, computer scientists, architects and businesspeople, with the dual aims of enriching biology and advancing biomimetic design. PMID:20392721

  17. Atomic war on insects intensified

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1967-06-15

    Intensive research work in many countries using nuclear methods aimed at reducing the immense food losses caused by insects have led to a number of important trial operations this year. Some are now in progress in Capri, the famous Italian tourist island, and in Central America. Both are directed against the Mediterranean fruit fly, which attacks most fruit in tropical and sub-tropical countries. Similar methods are also developing to combat other insect pests

  18. Edible insects are the future?

    OpenAIRE

    Huis, van, Arnold

    2016-01-01

    The global increase in demand for meat and the limited land area available prompt the search for alternative protein sources. Also the sustainability of meat production has been questioned. Edible insects as an alternative protein source for human food and animal feed are interesting in terms of low greenhouse gas emissions, high feed conversion efficiency, low land use, and their ability to transform low value organic side streams into high value protein products. More than 2000 insect speci...

  19. Dynamics of immune system gene expression upon bacterial challenge and wounding in a social insect (Bombus terrestris.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silvio Erler

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available The innate immune system which helps individuals to combat pathogens comprises a set of genes representing four immune system pathways (Toll, Imd, JNK and JAK/STAT. There is a lack of immune genes in social insects (e.g. honeybees when compared to Diptera. Potentially, this might be compensated by an advanced system of social immunity (synergistic action of several individuals. The bumble bee, Bombus terrestris, is a primitively eusocial species with an annual life cycle and colonies headed by a single queen. We used this key pollinator to study the temporal dynamics of immune system gene expression in response to wounding and bacterial challenge.Antimicrobial peptides (AMP (abaecin, defensin 1, hymenoptaecin were strongly up-regulated by wounding and bacterial challenge, the latter showing a higher impact on the gene expression level. Sterile wounding down-regulated TEP A, an effector gene of the JAK/STAT pathway, and bacterial infection influenced genes of the Imd (relish and JNK pathway (basket. Relish was up-regulated within the first hour after bacterial challenge, but decreased strongly afterwards. AMP expression following wounding and bacterial challenge correlates with the expression pattern of relish whereas correlated expression with dorsal was absent. Although expression of AMPs was high, continuous bacterial growth was observed throughout the experiment.Here we demonstrate for the first time the temporal dynamics of immune system gene expression in a social insect. Wounding and bacterial challenge affected the innate immune system significantly. Induction of AMP expression due to wounding might comprise a pre-adaptation to accompanying bacterial infections. Compared with solitary species this social insect exhibits reduced immune system efficiency, as bacterial growth could not be inhibited. A negative feedback loop regulating the Imd-pathway is suggested. AMPs, the end product of the Imd-pathway, inhibited the up-regulation of the

  20. The Impact of Environmental Mn Exposure on Insect Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yehuda Ben-Shahar

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Manganese (Mn is an essential trace element that acts as a metal co-factor in diverse biochemical and cellular functions. However, chronic environmental exposure to high levels of Mn is a well-established risk factor for the etiology of severe, atypical parkinsonian syndrome (manganism via its accumulation in the basal ganglia, pallidum, and striatum brain regions, which is often associated with abnormal dopamine, GABA, and glutamate neural signaling. Recent studies have indicated that chronic Mn exposure at levels that are below the risk for manganism can still cause behavioral, cognitive, and motor dysfunctions via poorly understood mechanisms at the molecular and cellular levels. Furthermore, in spite of significant advances in understanding Mn-induced behavioral and neuronal pathologies, available data are primarily for human and rodents. In contrast, the possible impact of environmental Mn exposure on brain functions and behavior of other animal species, especially insects and other invertebrates, remains mostly unknown both in the laboratory and natural habitats. Yet, the effects of environmental exposure to metals such as Mn on insect development, physiology, and behavior could also have major indirect impacts on human health via the long-term disruptions of food webs, as well as direct impact on the economy because of the important role insects play in crop pollination. Indeed, laboratory and field studies indicate that chronic exposures to metals such as Mn, even at levels that are below what is currently considered toxic, affect the dopaminergic signaling pathway in the insect brain, and have a major impact on the behavior of insects, including foraging activity of important pollinators such as the honey bee. Together, these studies highlight the need for a better understanding of the neuronal, molecular, and genetic processes that underlie the toxicity of Mn and other metal pollutants in diverse animal species, including insects.

  1. The insects as an assessment tool of ecotoxicology associated with metal toxic plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Azmat, Rafia; Moin, Sumeira; Saleem, Ailyan

    2018-04-01

    In this article, the assessment of lethal effects of Copper (Cu) on Luffa acutangula and Spinacia oleracea plants investigated in relation to the presence of insect species Oxycarenus hyalinipennis. The analysis of Cu-treated plants displays the information of rapid growth of Oxycarenus hyalinipennis species in triplicate. However, results showed that the impact of metal toxicity appeared as the reduced growth rate of plants, and dense growth of the insect species Oxycarenus halinipennis followed by the chewing/degradation of the toxic plant. The insect's inductees into polluted plants were justified by morphological and primary molecular level using plant stress hypothesis through analysis of the primary chemistry of leaves and roots. That includes various sugar contents which substantiated that these compounds act as the best feeding stimulant from oviposition to adult stage of the insects and accountable for the enactment of insects in the toxic plants. The relationship of these insects to the toxic plants linked with the higher contents of glucose, carbohydrates, and cellulose. The higher carbohydrate and cellulose content in both plants species under Cu accumulation exhibited more signs of insect mutilation over control plants and the lack of chemical resistances allowed the adult insects to spread, survive, reproduce and live long. The presence of insects developed relationships that assimilate all developmental, biological, and the interactive toxicity of Cu in both plant species which indicate the risk associated with these plants. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Recent Advances in Developing Insect Natural Products as Potential Modern Day Medicines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Norman Ratcliffe

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Except for honey as food, and silk for clothing and pollination of plants, people give little thought to the benefits of insects in their lives. This overview briefly describes significant recent advances in developing insect natural products as potential new medicinal drugs. This is an exciting and rapidly expanding new field since insects are hugely variable and have utilised an enormous range of natural products to survive environmental perturbations for 100s of millions of years. There is thus a treasure chest of untapped resources waiting to be discovered. Insects products, such as silk and honey, have already been utilised for thousands of years, and extracts of insects have been produced for use in Folk Medicine around the world, but only with the development of modern molecular and biochemical techniques has it become feasible to manipulate and bioengineer insect natural products into modern medicines. Utilising knowledge gleaned from Insect Folk Medicines, this review describes modern research into bioengineering honey and venom from bees, silk, cantharidin, antimicrobial peptides, and maggot secretions and anticoagulants from blood-sucking insects into medicines. Problems and solutions encountered in these endeavours are described and indicate that the future is bright for new insect derived pharmaceuticals treatments and medicines.

  3. Plant-insect interactions under bacterial influence: ecological implications and underlying mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sugio, Akiko; Dubreuil, Géraldine; Giron, David; Simon, Jean-Christophe

    2015-02-01

    Plants and insects have been co-existing for more than 400 million years, leading to intimate and complex relationships. Throughout their own evolutionary history, plants and insects have also established intricate and very diverse relationships with microbial associates. Studies in recent years have revealed plant- or insect-associated microbes to be instrumental in plant-insect interactions, with important implications for plant defences and plant utilization by insects. Microbial communities associated with plants are rich in diversity, and their structure greatly differs between below- and above-ground levels. Microbial communities associated with insect herbivores generally present a lower diversity and can reside in different body parts of their hosts including bacteriocytes, haemolymph, gut, and salivary glands. Acquisition of microbial communities by vertical or horizontal transmission and possible genetic exchanges through lateral transfer could strongly impact on the host insect or plant fitness by conferring adaptations to new habitats. Recent developments in sequencing technologies and molecular tools have dramatically enhanced opportunities to characterize the microbial diversity associated with plants and insects and have unveiled some of the mechanisms by which symbionts modulate plant-insect interactions. Here, we focus on the diversity and ecological consequences of bacterial communities associated with plants and herbivorous insects. We also highlight the known mechanisms by which these microbes interfere with plant-insect interactions. Revealing such mechanisms in model systems under controlled environments but also in more natural ecological settings will help us to understand the evolution of complex multitrophic interactions in which plants, herbivorous insects, and micro-organisms are inserted. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Experimental Biology. All rights reserved. For permissions

  4. All insects are equal, but some insects are more equal than others

    OpenAIRE

    Fischer, Arnout R.H.; Steenbekkers, L.P.A.

    2018-01-01

    Purpose: Lack of acceptance of insects as food is considered a barrier against societal adoption of the potentially valuable contribution of insects to human foods. An underlying barrier may be that insects are lumped together as one group, while consumers typically try specific insects. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the ways in which Dutch consumers, with and without insect tasting experience, are more or less willing to eat different insects. Design/methodology/approach: In a ...

  5. Sterile insect supply, emergence, and release

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dowell, R.V.; Worley, J.; Gomes, P.J.

    2005-01-01

    Insect mass-rearing for a sterile insect technique (SIT) programme is designed to move beyond the large-scale rearing of insects in a laboratory to the industrial production of consistently high-quality insects for sterilization and release. Each facility reflects the unique biology of the insect reared within it, but there are some generalities for all rearing facilities. Rearing insects in self-contained modules offers flexibility, and increased safety from catastrophic occurrences, compared with using a single building which houses all facets of the rearing process. Although mechanizing certain aspects of the rearing steps helps provide a consistently high-quality insect, successful mass-rearing and delivery depends largely upon the human component. Besides production in centralized facilities, insects can be produced from purchased eggs, or nowadays, adult insects are often obtained from specialized satellite emergence/collection facilities. Interest in commercializing insect production and release is increasing. Shipping sterile insects, sometimes over long distances, is now common practice. Procedures for handling and chilling adult insects, and providing food and water prior to release, are continually being improved. Sterile insects are released via static-release receptacles, ground-release systems, or most commonly from the air. The aerial release of chilled sterile insects is the most efficient method of release, especially when aircraft flight paths are guided by a Global Positioning System (GPS) linked to a computer-controlled release mechanism. (author)

  6. Radiations: tool for insect pest management

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Swami, Kailash Kumar; Kiradoo, M.M.; Srivastava, Meera

    2012-01-01

    The discovery that X-rays or gamma radiation could cause sufficient genetic damage to insect reproductive systems to induce sterility resulted from work conducted by H.J. Muller starting in the 1920s. The sterilizing effect of radiation was noted by scientists of the US Department of Agriculture who had been seeking a method to sterilize insects for many years. These scientists had theorized that if large numbers of the target insect species were reared, sterilized, and released into the field, the sterile insects would mate with the wild insects. These mating would result in no offspring and thus a decline in the population would be obtained. They calculated that if sufficient numbers of sterile insects were released, reproductive rate for the wild population would rapidly decline and reach zero. In simple language, birth control of insects. Radiation sterilization was the answer. In a SIT operation, radiation is used to sexually sterilize insects. Since the SIT is species specific, the selection the insect pest or group of pests on which to work is of primary importance. The Joint Division of the IAEA Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has been involved in the use of isotopes and radiation in insect control since 1964. Isotopes are used as tags or markers, for instance, of chemical molecules, insects, or plants. For example, with these tags one can follow the fate of insecticides within insects and the environment; the incorporation of nutrients into the insect; and the movements of insects under field conditions. They also can plants on which insects feed so that the quantity of consumed food can be measured and directly correlated with plant resistance. They can be used as well to follow parasites and predators of insects - for example, their movements, numbers, and ability to help control insect pests. Radiations therefore have come as a novel tool to combat insect pest problem and in future could be very helpful in various other ways, of be it be cost

  7. Riptortus pedestris and Burkholderia symbiont: an ideal model system for insect-microbe symbiotic associations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takeshita, Kazutaka; Kikuchi, Yoshitomo

    2017-04-01

    A number of insects establish symbiotic associations with beneficial microorganisms in various manners. The bean bug Riptortus pedestris and allied stink bugs possess an environmentally acquired Burkholderia symbiont in their midgut crypts. Unlike other insect endosymbionts, the Burkholderia symbiont is easily culturable and genetically manipulatable outside the host. In conjunction with the experimental advantages of the host insect, the Riptortus-Burkholderia symbiosis is an ideal model system for elucidating the molecular bases underpinning insect-microbe symbioses, which opens a new window in the research field of insect symbiosis. This review summarizes current knowledge of this system and discusses future perspectives. Copyright © 2016 Institut Pasteur. Published by Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  8. Insects in fluctuating thermal environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colinet, Hervé; Sinclair, Brent J; Vernon, Philippe; Renault, David

    2015-01-07

    All climate change scenarios predict an increase in both global temperature means and the magnitude of seasonal and diel temperature variation. The nonlinear relationship between temperature and biological processes means that fluctuating temperatures lead to physiological, life history, and ecological consequences for ectothermic insects that diverge from those predicted from constant temperatures. Fluctuating temperatures that remain within permissive temperature ranges generally improve performance. By contrast, those which extend to stressful temperatures may have either positive impacts, allowing repair of damage accrued during exposure to thermal extremes, or negative impacts from cumulative damage during successive exposures. We discuss the mechanisms underlying these differing effects. Fluctuating temperatures could be used to enhance or weaken insects in applied rearing programs, and any prediction of insect performance in the field-including models of climate change or population performance-must account for the effect of fluctuating temperatures.

  9. Spatial distribution of aquatic insects

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Iversen, Lars Lønsmann

    (time since glacial disturbance and habitat stability) and question the generality of these processes for the understanding of species richness gradients in European rivers. Using regional distributions of European mayflies, stoneflies, and caddisflies this chapter demonstrates that differences...... and shape the habitat requirements and distribution of one of the most affected groups of freshwater species: aquatic insects. It comprises four chapters each addressing different spatial factors in relation to the occurrence of aquatic insects in Europe. Chapter I examine two spatial ecological processes...... niche is derived from local distribution patterns, without incorporating landscape history it can lead to an erroneous niche definition. Chapter III provides some of the first evidence for differences in dispersal phenology related to flight potential in aquatic insects. The chapter highlights...

  10. Biogenic Amines in Insect Antennae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marianna I. Zhukovskaya

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Insect antenna is a multisensory organ, each modality of which can be modulated by biogenic amines. Octopamine (OA and its metabolic precursor tyramine (TA affect activity of antennal olfactory receptor neurons. There is some evidence that dopamine (DA modulates gustatory neurons. Serotonin can serve as a neurotransmitter in some afferent mechanosensory neurons and both as a neurotransmitter and neurohormone in efferent fibers targeted at the antennal vessel and mechanosensory organs. As a neurohormone, serotonin affects the generation of the transepithelial potential by sensillar accessory cells. Other possible targets of biogenic amines in insect antennae are hygro- and thermosensory neurons and epithelial cells. We suggest that the insect antenna is partially autonomous in the sense that biologically active substances entering its hemolymph may exert their effects and be cleared from this compartment without affecting other body parts.

  11. Ionizing radiation perception by insects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Campanhola, C.

    1980-04-01

    The proof of the existence of a perception for ionizing radiation by insects was aimed at, as well as the determination of its processing mechanism. It was tried also to check if such perception induces the insects to keep away from the radiation source, proving therefore a protection against the harms caused by ionizing radiation, or else the stimulus for such behaviour is similar to that caused by light radiations. 60 Co and 241 Am were used as gamma radiation sources, the 60 Co source of 0.435mCi and the 241 Am of 99.68mCi activity. Adult insects were used with the following treatments : exposure to 60 Co and 241 Am radiation and non-exposure (control). A total of approximately 50 insects per replication was released in the central region of an opaque white wooden barrier divided into 3 sections with the same area - 60.0 cm diameter and 7.5 cm height - covered with a nylon screen. 5 replications per treatment were made and the distribution of the insects was evaluated by photographs taken at 15, 30, 45, and 60 minutes after release. Sitophilus oryzae (l., 1763) and Ephestia cautella (Walker, 1864) showed some response to 241 Am gamma radiation, i.e. negative tactism. It was concluded that ionizing radiations can be detected by insects through direct visual stimulus or by visual stimulus reslting from interaction of radiation-Cerenkov radiation - with some other occular component with a refraction index greater than water. Also, the activity of the radioactive source with regard to perception for ionizing radiation, is of relevance in comparison with the energy of the radiation emitted by same, or in other words, what really matters is the radiation dose absorbed. (Author) [pt

  12. Respiratory symptoms in insect breeders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris-Roberts, J; Fishwick, D; Tate, P; Rawbone, R; Stagg, S; Barber, C M; Adisesh, A

    2011-08-01

    A number of specialist food suppliers in the UK breed and distribute insects and insect larvae as food for exotic pets, such as reptiles, amphibians and invertebrates. To investigate the extent of work-related (WR) symptoms and workplace-specific serum IgE in workers potentially exposed to a variety of biological contaminants, including insect and insect larvae allergens, endotoxin and cereal allergens at a UK specialist insect breeding facility. We undertook a study of respiratory symptoms and exposures at the facility, with subsequent detailed clinical assessment of one worker. All 32 workers were assessed clinically using a respiratory questionnaire and lung function. Eighteen workers consented to provide serum for determination of specific IgE to workplace allergens. Thirty-four per cent (11/32) of insect workers reported WR respiratory symptoms. Sensitization, as judged by specific IgE, was found in 29% (4/14) of currently exposed workers. Total inhalable dust levels ranged from 1.2 to 17.9 mg/m(3) [mean 4.3 mg/m(3) (SD 4.4 mg/m(3)), median 2.0 mg/m(3)] and endotoxin levels of up to 29435 EU/m(3) were recorded. Exposure to organic dusts below the levels for which there are UK workplace exposure limits can result in respiratory symptoms and sensitization. The results should alert those responsible for the health of similarly exposed workers to the potential for respiratory ill-health and the need to provide a suitable health surveillance programme.

  13. [Insect venom allergies : Update 2016 for otorhinolaryngologists].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klimek, L; Dippold, N; Sperl, A

    2016-12-01

    Due to the increasing incidence of hymenoptera venom allergies and the potentially life-threatening reactions, it is important for otolaryngologists working in allergology to have an understanding of modern diagnostic and treatment standards for this allergic disease. Molecular diagnosis with recombinant single allergens from bee and wasp venom components improves the diagnostics of insect venom allergies, particularly in patients with double-positive extract-based test results. Detection of specific sensitizations to bee or wasp venom enables double sensitizations to be better distinguished from cross-reactivity. Based on patient history and test results, the patient is initially advised on avoidance strategies and prescribed an emergency medication kit. Then, the indication for allergen-specific immunotherapy (AIT) is evaluated. The dose-increase phase can be performed using conventional, cluster, rush, or ultra-rush schedules, whereby rapid desensitization (rush AIT) performed in the clinic seems to be particularly effective as initial treatment.

  14. NIR detects, destroys insect pests

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McGraw, L.C.

    1998-01-01

    What’s good for Georgia peanuts may also be good for Kansas wheat. An electric eye that scans all food-grade peanuts for visual defects could one day do the same for wheat kernels. For peanuts, it’s a proven method for monitoring quality. In wheat, scanning with near-infrared (NIR) energy can reveal hidden insect infestations that lower wheat quality. ARS entomologists James E. Throne and James E. Baker and ARS agricultural engineer Floyd E. Dowell are the first to combine NIR with an automated grain-handling system to rapidly detect insects hidden in single wheat kernels

  15. ESR signals of irradiated insects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ukai, Mitsuko; Kameya, Hiromi; Imamura, Taro; Miyanoshita, Akihiro; Todoriki, Setsuko; Shimoyama, Yuhei

    2009-01-01

    Analysis of irradiated insects using Electron Spin Resonance (ESR) spectroscopy was reported. The insects were maize weevil, red flour beetle, Indian meal moth and cigarette beetle that are hazardous to crops. The ESR spectra were consisted of a singlet at g=2 and a sextet centered at the similar g-value. The singlet signal is due to an organic free radical. The sextet signal is attributable to the hyperfine interactions from Mn 2+ ions. Upon irradiation, new signals were not detected. The relaxation times, T 1 and T 2 , showed no variations before and after irradiation. (author)

  16. Insects as a Nitrogen Source for Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael J. Bidochka

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Many plants have evolved adaptations in order to survive in low nitrogen environments. One of the best-known adaptations is that of plant symbiosis with nitrogen-fixing bacteria; this is the major route by which nitrogen is incorporated into plant biomass. A portion of this plant-associated nitrogen is then lost to insects through herbivory, and insects represent a nitrogen reservoir that is generally overlooked in nitrogen cycles. In this review we show three specialized plant adaptations that allow for the recovery of insect nitrogen; that is, plants gaining nitrogen from insects. First, we show specialized adaptations by carnivorous plants in low nitrogen habitats. Insect carnivorous plants such as pitcher plants and sundews (Nepenthaceae/Sarraceniaceae and Drosera respectively are able to obtain substantial amounts of nitrogen from the insects that they capture. Secondly, numerous plants form associations with mycorrhizal fungi that can provide soluble nitrogen from the soil, some of which may be insect-derived nitrogen, obtained from decaying insects or insect frass. Finally, a specialized group of endophytic, insect-pathogenic fungi (EIPF provide host plants with insect-derived nitrogen. These soil-inhabiting fungi form a remarkable symbiosis with certain plant species. They can infect a wide range of insect hosts and also form endophytic associations in which they transfer insect-derived nitrogen to the plant. Root colonizing fungi are found in disparate fungal phylogenetic lineages, indicating possible convergent evolutionary strategies between taxa, evolution potentially driven by access to carbon-containing root exudates.

  17. Edible insects in China: Utilization and prospects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feng, Ying; Chen, Xiao-Ming; Zhao, Min; He, Zhao; Sun, Long; Wang, Cheng-Ye; Ding, Wei-Feng

    2018-04-01

    The use of edible insects has a long history in China, where they have been consumed for more than 2000 years. In general, the level of acceptance is high for the consumption of insects in China. Many studies on edible insects have been conducted in the last 20 years, and the scope of the research includes the culture of entomophagy and the identification, nutritional value, farming and breeding of edible insects, in addition to food production and safety. Currently, 324 species of insects from 11 orders are documented that are either edible or associated with entomophagy in China, which include the common edible species, some less commonly consumed species and some medicinal insects. However, only approximately 10 to 20 types of insects are regularly consumed. The nutritional values for 174 species are available in China, including edible, feed and medicinal species. Although the nutritional values vary among species, all the insects examined contain protein, fat, vitamins and minerals at levels that meet human nutritional requirements. Edible insects were, and continue to be, consumed by different ethnic groups in many parts of China. People directly consume insects or food products made from insects. The processing of products from insect protein powder, oil and chitin, and the development of healthcare foods has been studied in China. People also consume insects indirectly by eating livestock that were fed insects, which may be a more acceptable pathway to use insects in human diets. Although limited, the data on the food safety of insects indicate that insects are safe for food or feed. Incidences of allergic reactions after consuming silkworm pupae, cicadas and crickets have been reported in China. Insect farming is a unique breeding industry in rural China and is a source of income for local people. Insects are reared and bred for human food, medicine and animal feed using two approaches in China: the insects are either fully domesticated and reared

  18. Out with the garbage: the parasitic strategy of the mantisfly Plega hagenella mass-infesting colonies of the eusocial bee Melipona subnitida in northeastern Brazil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maia-Silva, Camila; Hrncir, Michael; Koedam, Dirk; Machado, Renato Jose Pires; Imperatriz-Fonseca, Vera Lucia

    2013-01-01

    Between April and June of 2012 mantisflies ( Plega hagenella) were found to be extensively parasitizing the nests of two groups of managed colonzies of eusocial stingless bees ( Melipona subnitida) in the semi-arid region of northeastern Brazil. The mantisfly larvae developed inside closed brood cells of the bee comb, where each mantispid larva fed on the bee larva or pupa present in a single brood cell. Mature mantispid larvae pupated inside silken cocoons spun in place within their hosts' brood cells then emerged as pharate adults inside the bee colony. Pharate adults were never attacked and killed by host colony workers. Instead, colony workers picked up the pharates and removed them from the nest unharmed, treating them similar to the way that the general refuse is removed from the nest. Adult mantispids subsequently eclosed from their pupal exuviae outside the nest. Manipulative experiments showed that post-eclosion adult mantispids placed back within active bee colonies were quickly attacked and killed. These observations demonstrate that pharate and post-eclosion adults of P. hagenella are perceived differently by colony workers and that delayed adult eclosion is an important functional element in the parasitic life strategy of P. hagenella, allowing adults to escape without injury from the bee colonies they parasitize.

  19. Sperm structure and motility in the eusocial naked mole-rat, Heterocephalus glaber: a case of degenerative orthogenesis in the absence of sperm competition?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    van der Horst Gerhard

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background We have studied sperm structure and motility in a eusocial rodent where reproduction is typically restricted to a single male and behaviourally dominant queen. Males rarely compete for access to the queen during her estrus cycle, suggesting little or no role for sperm competition. Results Our results revealed an atypical mammalian sperm structure with spermatozoa from breeding, subordinate and disperser males being degenerate and almost completely lacking a "mammalian phylogenetic stamp". Sperm structure is characterized by extreme polymorphism with most spermatozoa classified as abnormal. Sperm head shapes include round, oval, elongated, lobed, asymmetrical and amorphous. At the ultrastructural level, the sperm head contains condensed to granular chromatin with large open spaces between the chromatin. Nuclear chromatin seems disorganized since chromatin condensation is irregular and extremely inconsistent. The acrosome forms a cap (ca 35% over the anterior part of the head. A well defined nuclear fossa and neck with five minor sets of banded protein structures are present. The midpiece is poorly organized and contains only 5 to 7 round to oval mitochondria. The flagellar pattern is 9+9+2. A distinct degenerative feature of the tail principal piece is the absence of the fibrous sheath. Only 7% motile spermatozoa were observed which had exceptionally slow swimming speeds. Conclusion In this species, sperm form has simplified and degenerated in many aspects and represents a specialised form of degenerative orthogenesis at the cellular level.

  20. Insights into the biochemical defence and methylation of the solitary bee Osmia rufa L: A foundation for examining eusociality development.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aneta Strachecka

    Full Text Available We examined age-related biochemical and histological changes in the fat bodies and hemolymph of Osmia rufa males and females. We analysed solitary bees during diapause, in October and in April; as well as the flying insects following diapause, in May and June. The trophocyte sizes, as well as the numbers of lipid droplets were the greatest at the beginning of diapause. Subsequently, they decreased along with age. Triglyceride and glucose concentrations systematically decreased in fat body cells but increased in the hemolymph from October to June. Concentrations/activities of (enzymatic and non-enzymatic antioxidant and proteolytic systems, as well as phenoloxidase, aspartate aminotransferase, alanine aminotransferase and alkaline phosphatase levels were constant during the diapause, usually lower in the males than the females. Prior to the diapause/overwintering, the concentrations/activities of all the compounds were higher in the fat bodies than in the hemolymph. Later in the spring and in the summer, they increased in the hemolymph and on the body surfaces, while decreasing in the fat bodies. The global DNA methylation levels increased with age. Higher levels were always observed in the males than in the females. The study will promote better understanding of bee evolution and will be useful for the protection and management of solitary bees, with benefits to the environment and agriculture.

  1. The Curious Connection Between Insects and Dreams

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barrett A. Klein

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available A majority of humans spend their waking hours surrounded by insects, so it should be no surprise that insects also appear in humans’ dreams as we sleep. Dreaming about insects has a peculiar history, marked by our desire to explain a dream’s significance and by the tactic of evoking emotions by injecting insects in dream-related works of art, film, music, and literature. I surveyed a scattered literature for examples of insects in dreams, first from the practices of dream interpretation, psychiatry, and scientific study, then from fictional writings and popular culture, and finally in the etymology of entomology by highlighting insects with dream-inspired Latinate names. A wealth of insects in dreams, as documented clinically and culturally, attests to the perceived relevance of dreams and to the ubiquity of insects in our lives.

  2. The Curious Connection Between Insects and Dreams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klein, Barrett A.

    2011-01-01

    A majority of humans spend their waking hours surrounded by insects, so it should be no surprise that insects also appear in humans’ dreams as we sleep. Dreaming about insects has a peculiar history, marked by our desire to explain a dream’s significance and by the tactic of evoking emotions by injecting insects in dream-related works of art, film, music, and literature. I surveyed a scattered literature for examples of insects in dreams, first from the practices of dream interpretation, psychiatry, and scientific study, then from fictional writings and popular culture, and finally in the etymology of entomology by highlighting insects with dream-inspired Latinate names. A wealth of insects in dreams, as documented clinically and culturally, attests to the perceived relevance of dreams and to the ubiquity of insects in our lives. PMID:26467945

  3. The Curious Connection Between Insects and Dreams.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klein, Barrett A

    2011-12-21

    A majority of humans spend their waking hours surrounded by insects, so it should be no surprise that insects also appear in humans' dreams as we sleep. Dreaming about insects has a peculiar history, marked by our desire to explain a dream's significance and by the tactic of evoking emotions by injecting insects in dream-related works of art, film, music, and literature. I surveyed a scattered literature for examples of insects in dreams, first from the practices of dream interpretation, psychiatry, and scientific study, then from fictional writings and popular culture, and finally in the etymology of entomology by highlighting insects with dream-inspired Latinate names. A wealth of insects in dreams, as documented clinically and culturally, attests to the perceived relevance of dreams and to the ubiquity of insects in our lives.

  4. Trapping of insects in the Arabian Sea

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Pathak, S.C.; Parulekar, A.H.

    Some insects caught on RV Gaveshani, while on a cruise in the Arabian Sea in May-June 1986 is reported Of the 23 insects caught, 16 were lepidopterans An interesting flight behaviour of Psychota sp is described...

  5. Aquatic wood -- an insect perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peter S. Cranston; Brendan McKie

    2006-01-01

    Immersed wood provides refugia and substrate for a diverse array of macroinvertebrates, and food for a more restricted genuinely xylophagous fauna. Worldwide, xylophages are found across aquatic insect orders, including Coleoptera, Diptera, Trichoptera and Plecoptera. Xylophages often are specialised, feeding on the wood surface or mining deep within. Many feed...

  6. Social insects and selfish genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourke, A F

    2001-10-01

    Sometimes science advances because of a new idea. Sometimes, it's because of a new technique. When both occur together, exciting times result. In the study of social insects, DNA-based methods for measuring relatedness now allow increasingly detailed tests of Hamilton's theory of kin selection.

  7. Developmental constraint of insect audition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Strauß Johannes

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Insect ears contain very different numbers of sensory cells, from only one sensory cell in some moths to thousands of sensory cells, e.g. in cicadas. These differences still await functional explanation and especially the large numbers in cicadas remain puzzling. Insects of the different orders have distinct developmental sequences for the generation of auditory organs. These sensory cells might have different functions depending on the developmental stages. Here we propose that constraints arising during development are also important for the design of insect ears and might influence cell numbers of the adults. Presentation of the hypothesis We propose that the functional requirements of the subadult stages determine the adult complement of sensory units in the auditory system of cicadas. The hypothetical larval sensory organ should function as a vibration receiver, representing a functional caenogenesis. Testing the hypothesis Experiments at different levels have to be designed to test the hypothesis. Firstly, the neuroanatomy of the larval sense organ should be analyzed to detail. Secondly, the function should be unraveled neurophysiologically and behaviorally. Thirdly, the persistence of the sensory cells and the rebuilding of the sensory organ to the adult should be investigated. Implications of the hypothesis Usually, the evolution of insect ears is viewed with respect to physiological and neuronal mechanisms of sound perception. This view should be extended to the development of sense organs. Functional requirements during postembryonic development may act as constraints for the evolution of adult organs, as exemplified with the auditory system of cicadas.

  8. Edible insects are the future?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huis, van Arnold

    2016-01-01

    The global increase in demand for meat and the limited land area available prompt the search for alternative protein sources. Also the sustainability of meat production has been questioned. Edible insects as an alternative protein source for human food and animal feed are interesting in terms of

  9. Diversity of insect intestinal microflora

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Mrázek, Jakub; Štrosová, Lenka; Fliegerová, Kateřina; Kott, T.; Kopečný, Jan

    2008-01-01

    Roč. 53, č. 3 (2008), s. 229-233 ISSN 0015-5632 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA303/06/0974 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50450515 Keywords : insect intestinal microflora Subject RIV: EE - Microbiology, Virology Impact factor: 1.172, year: 2008

  10. Bug City: Aquatic Insects [Videotape].

    Science.gov (United States)

    1998

    "Bug City" is a video series created to help children learn about insects and other small critters. All aspects of bug life are touched upon including body structure, food, habitat, life cycle, mating habits, camouflage, mutualism (symbiosis), adaptations, social behavior, and more. Each program features dramatic microscopic photography,…

  11. Insect pests of stored grain products

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chuaqui-Offermanns, N.

    1987-01-01

    The presence of insects in stored products is a worldwide recognized problem. In this report chemical and physical methods to control insect infestations in stored products are discussed. Special attention is given to the use of ionizing radiation to control insect pests in stored grains. The radiosensitivity of the most common insect pests at their different developmental stages is presented and discussed. The conclusions of this review are compiled in an executive summary. 62 refs

  12. All insects are equal, but some insects are more equal than others

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fischer, Arnout R.H.; Steenbekkers, L.P.A.

    2018-01-01

    Purpose: Lack of acceptance of insects as food is considered a barrier against societal adoption of the potentially valuable contribution of insects to human foods. An underlying barrier may be that insects are lumped together as one group, while consumers typically try specific insects. The purpose

  13. How Insects Survive Winter in the Midwest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Understanding how insects cope with cold temperatures can not only help entomologists more accurately forecast when and where insects are active, but it may also help us understand how climate change will influence insect pests. This newsletter article provides a comprehensive overview of how Midwes...

  14. Plant responses to insect egg deposition

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hilker, M.; Fatouros, N.E.

    2015-01-01

    Plants can respond to insect egg deposition and thus resist attack by herbivorous insects from the beginning of the attack, egg deposition. We review ecological effects of plant responses to insect eggs and differentiate between egg-induced plant defenses that directly harm the eggs and indirect

  15. Radioisotopes and food preservation against insects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hachem Ahmad, M.S.

    1998-01-01

    The book describes how to preserve food from harmful insects by using radioisotopes. It focusses on the impact of ionized radiation on the different stages of insect growth and on its metabolism and immunity. It also discusses the relationship between radiation doses and insect reproduction. It explains the various methods to detect the irradiated foods

  16. 21 CFR 1250.95 - Insect control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Insect control. 1250.95 Section 1250.95 Food and... SANITATION Sanitation Facilities and Conditions on Vessels § 1250.95 Insect control. Vessels shall be... generally accepted methods of insect control. ...

  17. Insect biofuel cells using trehalose included in insect hemolymph leading to an insect-mountable biofuel cell.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shoji, Kan; Akiyama, Yoshitake; Suzuki, Masato; Hoshino, Takayuki; Nakamura, Nobuhumi; Ohno, Hiroyuki; Morishima, Keisuke

    2012-12-01

    In this paper, an insect biofuel cell (BFC) using trehalose included in insect hemolymph was developed. The insect BFC is based on trehalase and glucose oxidase (GOD) reaction systems which oxidize β-glucose obtained by hydrolyzing trehalose. First, we confirmed by LC-MS that a sufficient amount of trehalose was present in the cockroach hemolymph (CHL). The maximum power density obtained using the insect BFC was 6.07 μW/cm(2). The power output was kept more than 10 % for 2.5 h by protecting the electrodes with a dialysis membrane. Furthermore, the maximum power density was increased to 10.5 μW/cm(2) by using an air diffusion cathode. Finally, we succeeded in driving a melody integrated circuit (IC) and a piezo speaker by connecting five insect BFCs in series. The results indicate that the insect BFC is a promising insect-mountable battery to power environmental monitoring micro-tools.

  18. Phase Coexistence in Insect Swarms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinhuber, Michael; Ouellette, Nicholas T.

    2017-10-01

    Animal aggregations are visually striking, and as such are popular examples of collective behavior in the natural world. Quantitatively demonstrating the collective nature of such groups, however, remains surprisingly difficult. Inspired by thermodynamics, we applied topological data analysis to laboratory insect swarms and found evidence for emergent, material-like states. We show that the swarms consist of a core "condensed" phase surrounded by a dilute "vapor" phase. These two phases coexist in equilibrium, and maintain their distinct macroscopic properties even though individual insects pass freely between them. We further define a pressure and chemical potential to describe these phases, extending theories of active matter to aggregations of macroscopic animals and laying the groundwork for a thermodynamic description of collective animal groups.

  19. Nuclear energy against insect pests

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1963-07-15

    The paper presents the main topics discussed at the scientific symposium on the Use and Application of Radioisotopes and Radiation in the Control of Plant and Animal Insect Pests, held in Athens last April, jointly organized by IAEA and FAO with the co-operation of the Greek Government. The sterile male technique is discussed in details and some results from the applications are given

  20. Successes against insects and parasites

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1967-10-15

    With more and more answers being found to intricate problems which have entailed years of research in many parts of the world, some successes can now be claimed in the fight to control insect threats to crops, animals and human beings. Nuclear techniques are playing an important part in world efforts, and recent reports show that they have been effective in pioneer work against crop pests as well as in finding an answer to some diseases caused by parasites

  1. Circadian organization in hemimetabolous insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomioka, Kenji; Abdelsalam, Salaheldin

    2004-12-01

    The circadian system of hemimetabolous insects is reviewed in respect to the locus of the circadian clock and multioscillatory organization. Because of relatively easy access to the nervous system, the neuronal organization of the clock system in hemimetabolous insects has been studied, yielding identification of the compound eye as the major photoreceptor for entrainment and the optic lobe for the circadian clock locus. The clock site within the optic lobe is inconsistent among reported species; in cockroaches the lobula was previously thought to be a most likely clock locus but accessory medulla is recently stressed to be a clock center, while more distal part of the optic lobe including the lamina and the outer medulla area for the cricket. Identification of the clock cells needs further critical studies. Although each optic lobe clock seems functionally identical, in respect to photic entrainment and generation of the rhythm, the bilaterally paired clocks form a functional unit. They interact to produce a stable time structure within individual insects by exchanging photic and temporal information through neural pathways, in which serotonin and pigment-dispersing factor (PDF) are involved as chemical messengers. The mutual interaction also plays an important role in seasonal adaptation of the rhythm.

  2. Stiffness of desiccating insect wings

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mengesha, T E; Vallance, R R; Mittal, R

    2011-01-01

    The stiffness of insect wings is typically determined through experimental measurements. Such experiments are performed on wings removed from insects. However, the wings are subject to desiccation which typically leads to an increase in their stiffness. Although this effect of desiccation is well known, a comprehensive study of the rate of change in stiffness of desiccating insect wings would be a significant aid in planning experiments as well as interpreting data from such experiments. This communication presents a comprehensive experimental analysis of the change in mass and stiffness of gradually desiccating forewings of Painted Lady butterflies (Vanessa cardui). Mass and stiffness of the forewings of five butterflies were simultaneously measured every 10 min over a 24 h period. The averaged results show that wing mass declined exponentially by 21.1% over this time period with a time constant of 9.8 h, while wing stiffness increased linearly by 46.2% at a rate of 23.4 μN mm -1 h -1 . For the forewings of a single butterfly, the experiment was performed over a period of 1 week, and the results show that wing mass declined exponentially by 52.2% with a time constant of 30.2 h until it reached a steady-state level of 2.00 mg, while wing stiffness increased exponentially by 90.7% until it reached a steady-state level of 1.70 mN mm -1 . (communication)

  3. Stiffness of desiccating insect wings

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mengesha, T E; Vallance, R R [Department of Mechanical Engineering, The George Washington University, 738 Phillips Hall, 801 22nd St NW, Washington, DC 20052 (United States); Mittal, R, E-mail: vallance@gwu.edu [Department of Mechanical Engineering, Johns Hopkins University, 126 Latrobe Hall, 3400 N Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21218 (United States)

    2011-03-15

    The stiffness of insect wings is typically determined through experimental measurements. Such experiments are performed on wings removed from insects. However, the wings are subject to desiccation which typically leads to an increase in their stiffness. Although this effect of desiccation is well known, a comprehensive study of the rate of change in stiffness of desiccating insect wings would be a significant aid in planning experiments as well as interpreting data from such experiments. This communication presents a comprehensive experimental analysis of the change in mass and stiffness of gradually desiccating forewings of Painted Lady butterflies (Vanessa cardui). Mass and stiffness of the forewings of five butterflies were simultaneously measured every 10 min over a 24 h period. The averaged results show that wing mass declined exponentially by 21.1% over this time period with a time constant of 9.8 h, while wing stiffness increased linearly by 46.2% at a rate of 23.4 {mu}N mm{sup -1} h{sup -1}. For the forewings of a single butterfly, the experiment was performed over a period of 1 week, and the results show that wing mass declined exponentially by 52.2% with a time constant of 30.2 h until it reached a steady-state level of 2.00 mg, while wing stiffness increased exponentially by 90.7% until it reached a steady-state level of 1.70 mN mm{sup -1}. (communication)

  4. Gut immunity in Lepidopteran insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Kai; Yang, Bing; Huang, Wuren; Dobens, Leonard; Song, Hongsheng; Ling, Erjun

    2016-11-01

    Lepidopteran insects constitute one of the largest fractions of animals on earth, but are considered pests in their relationship with man. Key to the success of this order of insects is its ability to digest food and absorb nutrition, which takes place in the midgut. Because environmental microorganisms can easily enter Lepidopteran guts during feeding, the innate immune response guards against pathogenic bacteria, virus and microsporidia that can be devoured with food. Gut immune responses are complicated by both resident gut microbiota and the surrounding peritrophic membrane and are distinct from immune responses in the body cavity, which depend on the function of the fat body and hemocytes. Due to their relevance to agricultural production, studies of Lepidopteran insect midgut and immunity are receiving more attention, and here we summarize gut structures and functions, and discuss how these confer immunity against different microorganisms. It is expected that increased knowledge of Lepidopteran gut immunity may be utilized for pest biological control in the future. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Diverse honeydew-consuming fungal communities associated with scale insects.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manpreet K Dhami

    Full Text Available Sooty mould fungi are ubiquitous, abundant consumers of insect-honeydew that have been little-studied. They form a complex of unrelated fungi that coexist and compete for honeydew, which is a chemically complex resource. In this study, we used scanning electron microscopy in combination with T-RFLP community profiling and ITS-based tag-pyrosequencing to extensively describe the sooty mould community associated with the honeydews of two ecologically important New Zealand coelostomidiid scale insects, Coelostomidia wairoensis and Ultracoelostoma brittini. We tested the influence of host plant on the community composition of associated sooty moulds, and undertook limited analyses to examine the influence of scale insect species and geographic location. We report here a previously unknown degree of fungal diversity present in this complex, with pyrosequencing detecting on average 243 operational taxonomic units across the different sooty mould samples. In contrast, T-RFLP detected only a total of 24 different "species" (unique peaks. Nevertheless, both techniques identified similar patterns of diversity suggesting that either method is appropriate for community profiling. The composition of the microbial community associated with individual scale insect species varied although the differences may in part reflect variation in host preference and site. Scanning electron microscopy visualised an intertwined mass of fungal hyphae and fruiting bodies in near-intact physical condition, but was unable to distinguish between the different fungal communities on a morphological level, highlighting the need for molecular research. The substantial diversity revealed for the first time by pyrosequencing and our inability to identify two-thirds of the diversity to further than the fungal division highlights the significant gap in our knowledge of these fungal groups. This study provides a first extensive look at the community diversity of the fungal community

  6. Resistance of rice to insect pests mediated by suppression of serotonin biosynthesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Hai-Ping; Luo, Ting; Fu, Hao-Wei; Wang, Long; Tan, Yuan-Yuan; Huang, Jian-Zhong; Wang, Qing; Ye, Gong-Yin; Gatehouse, Angharad M R; Lou, Yong-Gen; Shu, Qing-Yao

    2018-05-07

    Rice is one of the world's most important foods, but its production suffers from insect pests, causing losses of billions of dollars, and extensive use of environmentally damaging pesticides for their control 1,2 . However, the molecular mechanisms of insect resistance remain elusive. Although a few resistance genes for planthopper have been cloned, no rice germplasm is resistant to stem borers. Here, we report that biosynthesis of serotonin, a neurotransmitter in mammals 3 , is induced by insect infestation in rice, and its suppression confers resistance to planthoppers and stem borers, the two most destructive pests of rice 2 . Serotonin and salicylic acid derive from chorismate 4 . In rice, the cytochrome P450 gene CYP71A1 encodes tryptamine 5-hydroxylase, which catalyses conversion of tryptamine to serotonin 5 . In susceptible wild-type rice, planthopper feeding induces biosynthesis of serotonin and salicylic acid, whereas in mutants with an inactivated CYP71A1 gene, no serotonin is produced, salicylic acid levels are higher and plants are more insect resistant. The addition of serotonin to the resistant rice mutant and other brown planthopper-resistant genotypes results in a loss of insect resistance. Similarly, serotonin supplementation in artificial diet enhances the performance of both insects. These insights demonstrate that regulation of serotonin biosynthesis plays an important role in defence, and may prove valuable for breeding insect-resistant cultivars of rice and other cereal crops.

  7. Microbial ecology-based methods to characterize the bacterial communities of non-model insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prosdocimi, Erica M; Mapelli, Francesca; Gonella, Elena; Borin, Sara; Crotti, Elena

    2015-12-01

    Among the animals of the Kingdom Animalia, insects are unparalleled for their widespread diffusion, diversity and number of occupied ecological niches. In recent years they have raised researcher interest not only because of their importance as human and agricultural pests, disease vectors and as useful breeding species (e.g. honeybee and silkworm), but also because of their suitability as animal models. It is now fully recognized that microorganisms form symbiotic relationships with insects, influencing their survival, fitness, development, mating habits and the immune system and other aspects of the biology and ecology of the insect host. Thus, any research aimed at deepening the knowledge of any given insect species (perhaps species of applied interest or species emerging as novel pests or vectors) must consider the characterization of the associated microbiome. The present review critically examines the microbiology and molecular ecology techniques that can be applied to the taxonomical and functional analysis of the microbiome of non-model insects. Our goal is to provide an overview of current approaches and methods addressing the ecology and functions of microorganisms and microbiomes associated with insects. Our focus is on operational details, aiming to provide a concise guide to currently available advanced techniques, in an effort to extend insect microbiome research beyond simple descriptions of microbial communities. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Cis-12-oxo-phytodienoic acid stimulates rice defense response to a piercing-sucking insect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Hui-Min; Li, Hai-Chao; Zhou, Shi-Rong; Xue, Hong-Wei; Miao, Xue-Xia

    2014-11-01

    The brown planthopper (BPH, Nilaparvata lugens) is a destructive, monophagous, piercing-sucking insect pest of rice. Previous studies indicated that jasmonic acid (JA) positively regulates rice defense against chewing insect pests but negatively regulates it against the piercing-sucking insect of BPH. We here demonstrated that overexpression of allene oxide cyclase (AOC) but not OPR3 (cis-12-oxo-phytodienoic acid (OPDA) reductase 3, an enzyme adjacent to AOC in the JA synthetic pathway) significantly increased rice resistance to BPH, mainly by reducing the feeding activity and survival rate. Further analysis revealed that plant response to BPH under AOC overexpression was independent of the JA pathway and that significantly higher OPDA levels stimulated rice resistance to BPH. Microarray analysis identified multiple candidate resistance-related genes under AOC overexpression. OPDA treatment stimulated the resistance of radish seedlings to green peach aphid Myzus persicae, another piercing-sucking insect. These results imply that rice resistance to chewing insects and to sucking insects can be enhanced simultaneously through AOC-mediated increases of JA and OPDA and provide direct evidence of the potential application of OPDA in stimulating plant defense responses to piercing-sucking insect pests in agriculture. © The Author 2014. Published by the Molecular Plant Shanghai Editorial Office in association with Oxford University Press on behalf of CSPB and IPPE, SIBS, CAS.

  9. Molecular characters and recombinant expression of the ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    user

    2011-03-07

    Mar 7, 2011 ... Full Length Research Paper. Molecular characters ... 1State Key Laboratory for Biology of Plant Diseases and Insect Pests, Institute of Plant Protection, Chinese Academy of .... Characterization and model building of the 3-D.

  10. Induction of Systemic Resistance against Insect Herbivores in Plants by Beneficial Soil Microbes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Md. Harun-Or Rashid

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Soil microorganisms with growth-promoting activities in plants, including rhizobacteria and rhizofungi, can improve plant health in a variety of different ways. These beneficial microbes may confer broad-spectrum resistance to insect herbivores. Here, we provide evidence that beneficial microbes modulate plant defenses against insect herbivores. Beneficial soil microorganisms can regulate hormone signaling including the jasmonic acid, ethylene and salicylic acid pathways, thereby leading to gene expression, biosynthesis of secondary metabolites, plant defensive proteins and different enzymes and volatile compounds, that may induce defenses against leaf-chewing as well as phloem-feeding insects. In this review, we discuss how beneficial microbes trigger induced systemic resistance against insects by promoting plant growth and highlight changes in plant molecular mechanisms and biochemical profiles.

  11. Herbivory increases diversification across insect clades.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiens, John J; Lapoint, Richard T; Whiteman, Noah K

    2015-09-24

    Insects contain more than half of all living species, but the causes of their remarkable diversity remain poorly understood. Many authors have suggested that herbivory has accelerated diversification in many insect clades. However, others have questioned the role of herbivory in insect diversification. Here, we test the relationships between herbivory and insect diversification across multiple scales. We find a strong, positive relationship between herbivory and diversification among insect orders. However, herbivory explains less variation in diversification within some orders (Diptera, Hemiptera) or shows no significant relationship with diversification in others (Coleoptera, Hymenoptera, Orthoptera). Thus, we support the overall importance of herbivory for insect diversification, but also show that its impacts can vary across scales and clades. In summary, our results illuminate the causes of species richness patterns in a group containing most living species, and show the importance of ecological impacts on diversification in explaining the diversity of life.

  12. Breeding and maintaining high-quality insects

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Kim; Kristensen, Torsten Nygård; Heckmann, Lars-Henrik

    2017-01-01

    Insects have a large potential for sustainably enhancing global food and feed production, and commercial insect production is a rising industry of high economic value. Insects suitable for production typically have fast growth, short generation time, efficient nutrient utilization, high...... reproductive potential, and thrive at high density. Insects may cost-efficiently convert agricultural and industrial food by-products into valuable protein once the technology is finetuned. However, since insect mass production is a new industry, the technology needed to efficiently farm these animals is still...... in a starting phase. Here, we discuss the challenges and precautions that need to be considered when breeding and maintaining high-quality insect populations for food and feed. This involves techniques typically used in domestic animal breeding programs including maintaining genetically healthy populations...

  13. Insect Peptides - Perspectives in Human Diseases Treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chowanski, Szymon; Adamski, Zbigniew; Lubawy, Jan; Marciniak, Pawel; Pacholska-Bogalska, Joanna; Slocinska, Malgorzata; Spochacz, Marta; Szymczak, Monika; Urbanski, Arkadiusz; Walkowiak-Nowicka, Karolina; Rosinski, Grzegorz

    2017-01-01

    Insects are the largest and the most widely distributed group of animals in the world. Their diversity is a source of incredible variety of different mechanisms of life processes regulation. There are many agents that regulate immunology, reproduction, growth and development or metabolism. Hence, it seems that insects may be a source of numerous substances useful in human diseases treatment. Especially important in the regulation of insect physiology are peptides, like neuropeptides, peptide hormones or antimicrobial peptides. There are two main aspects where they can be helpful, 1) Peptides isolated from insects may become potential drugs in therapy of different diseases, 2) A lot of insect peptide hormones show structural or functional homology to mammalian peptide hormones and the comparative studies may give a new look on human disorders. In our review we focused on three group of insect derived peptides: 1) immune-active peptides, 2) peptide hormones and 3) peptides present in venoms. In our review we try to show the considerable potential of insect peptides in searching for new solutions for mammalian diseases treatment. We summarise the knowledge about properties of insect peptides against different virulent agents, anti-inflammatory or anti-nociceptive properties as well as compare insect and mammalian/vertebrate peptide endocrine system to indicate usefulness of knowledge about insect peptide hormones in drug design. The field of possible using of insect delivered peptide to therapy of various human diseases is still not sufficiently explored. Undoubtedly, more attention should be paid to insects due to searching new drugs. Copyright© Bentham Science Publishers; For any queries, please email at epub@benthamscience.org.

  14. Electronic nose in edible insects area

    OpenAIRE

    Martin Adámek; Anna Adámková; Marie Borkovcová; Jiří Mlček; Martina Bednářová; Lenka Kouřimská; Josef Skácel; Michal Řezníček

    2017-01-01

    Edible insect is appraised by many cultures as delicious and nutritionally beneficial food. In western countries this commodity is not fully appreciated, and the worries about edible insect food safety prevail. Electronic noses can become a simple and cheap way of securing the health safety of food, and they can also become a tool for evaluating the quality of certain commodities. This research is a pilot project of using an electronic nose in edible insect culinary treatment, and this manusc...

  15. Impacts of urbanization process on insect diversity

    OpenAIRE

    Shuisong Ye; Yan Fang; Kai Li

    2013-01-01

    Rapid worldwide urbanization during the last century has led to more than half the world’s population living in urban regions. Studies of how urbanization affects insect diversity have focused on the following: insect abundance, distribution, extinction, food habits and ecosystem services. Native insect populations have declined greatly in urban areas, where studies of their spatial distribution have revealed that abundance decreases along what is termed the rural–city center gradient (RCG), ...

  16. Mass-rearing for sterile insect release

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Parker, A.G.

    2005-01-01

    As the sterile insect technique (SIT) relies upon released sterile male insects efficiently competing with wild males to mate with wild females, it follows that mass-rearing of insects is one of the principal steps in the process. Mass-rearing for the SIT presents both problems and opportunities due to the increased scale involved compared with rearing insects for most other purposes. This chapter discusses facility design, environmental concerns, strain management, quality control, automation, diet, sex separation, marking, and storage in relation to rearing for the SIT. (author)

  17. Predicting the potential establishment of two insect species using the simulation environment INSIM (INsect SIMulation)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hemerik, Lia; Nes, van Egbert H.

    2016-01-01

    Degree-day models have long been used to predict events in the life cycle of insects and therewith the timing of outbreaks of insect pests and their natural enemies. This approach assumes, however, that the effect of temperature is linear, whereas developmental rates of insects are non-linearly

  18. Oligocene termite nests with in situ fungus gardens from the rukwa rift basin, Tanzania, support a paleogene african origin for insect agriculture

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Roberts, Eric M.; Todd, Christopher N.; Aanen, Duur K.; Nobre, Tania; Hilbert-Wolf, Hannah L.; O'Connor, Patrick M.; Tapanila, Leif; Mtelela, Cassy; Stevens, Nancy J.

    2016-01-01

    Based on molecular dating, the origin of insect agriculture is hypothesized to have taken place independently in three clades of fungus-farming insects: the termites, ants or ambrosia beetles during the Paleogene (66-24 Ma). Yet, definitive fossil evidence of fungus-growing behavior has been

  19. Insect olfactory memory in time and space.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Xu; Davis, Ronald L

    2006-12-01

    Recent studies using functional optical imaging have revealed that cellular memory traces form in different areas of the insect brain after olfactory classical conditioning. These traces are revealed as increased calcium signals or synaptic release from defined neurons, and include a short-lived trace that forms immediately after conditioning in antennal lobe projection neurons, an early trace in dopaminergic neurons, and a medium-term trace in dorsal paired medial neurons. New molecular genetic tools have revealed that for normal behavioral memory performance, synaptic transmission from the mushroom body neurons is required only during retrieval, whereas synaptic transmission from dopaminergic neurons is required at the time of acquisition and synaptic transmission from dorsal paired medial neurons is required during the consolidation period. Such experimental results are helping to identify the types of neurons that participate in olfactory learning and when their participation is required. Olfactory learning often occurs alongside crossmodal interactions of sensory information from other modalities. Recent studies have revealed complex interactions between the olfactory and the visual senses that can occur during olfactory learning, including the facilitation of learning about subthreshold olfactory stimuli due to training with concurrent visual stimuli.

  20. Transgenic rice plants harboring an introduced potato proteinase inhibitor II gene are insect resistant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duan, X; Li, X; Xue, Q; Abo-el-Saad, M; Xu, D; Wu, R

    1996-04-01

    We introduced the potato proteinase inhibitor II (PINII) gene (pin2) into several Japonica rice varieties, and regenerated a large number of transgenic rice plants. Wound-inducible expression of the pin2 gene driven by its own promoter, together with the first intron of the rice actin 1 gene (act1), resulted in high-level accumulation of the PINII protein in the transgenic plants. The introduced pin2 gene was stably inherited in the second, third, and fourth generations, as shown by molecular analyses. Based on data from the molecular analyses, several homozygous transgenic lines were obtained. Bioassay for insect resistance with the fifth-generation transgenic rice plants showed that transgenic rice plants had increased resistance to a major rice insect pest, pink stem borer (Sesamia inferens). Thus, introduction of an insecticidal proteinase inhibitor gene into cereal plants can be used as a general strategy for control of insect pests.

  1. Insects diversity in lima bean (Phaseolus lunatus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    WIWIN SETIAWATI

    2005-10-01

    Full Text Available Lima bean (Phaseolus lunatus is a vegetable which usually made as a home yard plant for Indonesian people to fulfill their daily needs. This plant has not been produced in the large number by the farmer. So it is hard to find in the market. Lima bean is light by many kind of insect. Inventory, identification and the study of insect taxon to this plant is being done to collect some information about the insect who life in the plant. The research was done in Balitsa experiment garden in the district of Lembang in Bandung regency on November 2003-February 2004, the experiment start at 4 weeks age, at the height of 1260 m over the sea level. The observation was made systematically by absolute method (D-vac macine and relative method (sweeping net. The research so that there were 26 species of phytofagous insect, 9 species of predator insect, 6 species of parasitoid insect, 4 species of pollinator and 14 species of scavenger insect. According to the research the highest species number was got in the 8th week (3rd sampling, which had 27 variety of species, so the highest diversity was also got in this with 2,113 point. Aphididae and Cicadellidae was the most insect found in roay plant. The research also had high number of species insect so the diversity of insect and evenness become high. A community will have the high stability if it is a long with the high diversity. High evenness in community that has low species dominance and high species number of insect so the high of species richness.

  2. Riboflavin Provisioning Underlies Wolbachia's Fitness Contribution to Its Insect Host.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moriyama, Minoru; Nikoh, Naruo; Hosokawa, Takahiro; Fukatsu, Takema

    2015-11-10

    Endosymbiotic bacteria of the genus Wolbachia represent the most successful symbiotic bacteria in the terrestrial ecosystem. The success of Wolbachia has been ascribed to its remarkable phenotypic effects on host reproduction, such as cytoplasmic incompatibility, whereby maternally inherited bacteria can spread in their host populations at the expense of their host's fitness. Meanwhile, recent theoretical as well as empirical studies have unveiled that weak and/or conditional positive fitness effects may significantly facilitate invasion and spread of Wolbachia infections in host populations. Here, we report a previously unrecognized nutritional aspect, the provision of riboflavin (vitamin B2), that potentially underpins the Wolbachia-mediated fitness benefit to insect hosts. A comparative genomic survey for synthetic capability of B vitamins revealed that only the synthesis pathway for riboflavin is highly conserved among diverse insect-associated Wolbachia strains, while the synthesis pathways for other B vitamins were either incomplete or absent. Molecular phylogenetic and genomic analyses of riboflavin synthesis genes from diverse Wolbachia strains revealed that, in general, their phylogenetic relationships are concordant with Wolbachia's genomic phylogeny, suggesting that the riboflavin synthesis genes have been stably maintained in the course of Wolbachia evolution. In rearing experiments with bedbugs (Cimex lectularius) on blood meals in which B vitamin contents were manipulated, we demonstrated that Wolbachia's riboflavin provisioning significantly contributes to growth, survival, and reproduction of the insect host. These results provide a physiological basis upon which Wolbachia-mediated positive fitness consequences are manifested and shed new light on the ecological and evolutionary relevance of Wolbachia infections. Conventionally, Wolbachia has been regarded as a parasitic bacterial endosymbiont that manipulates the host insect's reproduction in a

  3. A Plant Bacterial Pathogen Manipulates Its Insect Vector's Energy Metabolism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hijaz, Faraj; Ebert, Timothy A.; Rogers, Michael E.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Insect-transmitted plant-pathogenic bacteria may alter their vectors' fitness, survival, behavior, and metabolism. Because these pathogens interact with their vectors on the cellular and organismal levels, potential changes at the biochemical level might occur. “Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus” (CLas) is transmitted in a persistent, circulative, and propagative manner. The genome of CLas revealed the presence of an ATP translocase that mediates the uptake of ATP and other nucleotides from medium to achieve its biological processes, such as growth and multiplication. Here, we showed that the levels of ATP and many other nucleotides were significantly higher in CLas-infected than healthy psyllids. Gene expression analysis showed upregulation for ATP synthase subunits, while ATPase enzyme activity showed a decrease in ATPase activity. These results indicated that CLas stimulated Diaphorina citri to produce more ATP and many other energetic nucleotides, while it may inhibit their consumption by the insect. As a result of ATP accumulation, the adenylated energy charge (AEC) increased and the AMP/ATP and ADP/ATP ratios decreased in CLas-infected D. citri psyllids. Survival analysis confirmed a shorter life span for CLas-infected D. citri psyllids. In addition, electropenetrography showed a significant reduction in total nonprobing time, salivation time, and time from the last E2 (phloem ingestion) to the end of recording, indicating that CLas-infected psyllids were at a higher hunger level and they tended to forage more often. This increased feeding activity reflects the CLas-induced energetic stress. In conclusion, CLas alters the energy metabolism of its psyllid vector, D. citri, in order to secure its need for energetic nucleotides. IMPORTANCE Insect transmission of plant-pathogenic bacteria involves propagation and circulation of the bacteria within their vectors. The transmission process is complex and requires specific interactions at the molecular

  4. Feeding Studies of Irradiated Foods with Insects

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Loaharanu, Srisan

    1978-06-15

    Insects are of value to man in many scientific studies. Microsomal detoxication systems exist in both insects and mammals. In the preliminary investigations it was found that irradiated cocoa beans and white and red kidney beans (Phaseolus spp.) did not significantly change the percentage of egg-hatch in the insects tested. In more detailed investigations food samples that are susceptible to insect spoilage and are representatives of widely consumed human foods were fed to various insect species. The development, sex distortion and reproductivity of the insects were investigated. Cytogenetic aberrations as related to dominant lethality were studied in insects with reasonably clear chromosomal patterns. The meiosis stage was examined, using the squash technique and Aceto-orcein staining. Black beans, Phaseolus spp., irradiated with up to 200 krad of gamma rays did not apparently change the percentage of survival and the sex ratio of the bean weevil, Zabrotes subfasciatus. Dominant lethality in the German cockroach, Blatella germanica, fed on irradiated black beans did not apparently occur when considering the results of cytological investigation and the number of offspring obtained. Dried sardine samples irradiated with up to 400 krad of gamma rays neither apparently affected the survival nor caused sex distortion in the cheese skipper, Piophila casei. This irradiated product apparently did not induce dominant lethality in the German cockroach as tested. Coffee processed from coffee beans that had been irradiated with up to 100 krad of gamma rays did not apparently cause adverse effects on the experimental insects. (author)

  5. Insect and pest control newsletter. No. 53

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1999-07-01

    This Newsletter announces research coordination meetings, status of existing research coordinated research programmes on the use of nuclear applications such as the sterile insect technique (SIT) in insect and pest control. Training courses as well as new coordinated research programmes in the pipeline are also highlighted

  6. Estimating Aquatic Insect Populations. Introduction to Sampling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chihuahuan Desert Research Inst., Alpine, TX.

    This booklet introduces high school and junior high school students to the major groups of aquatic insects and to population sampling techniques. Chapter 1 consists of a short field guide which can be used to identify five separate orders of aquatic insects: odonata (dragonflies and damselflies); ephemeroptera (mayflies); diptera (true flies);…

  7. Testing mechanistic models of growth in insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maino, James L; Kearney, Michael R

    2015-11-22

    Insects are typified by their small size, large numbers, impressive reproductive output and rapid growth. However, insect growth is not simply rapid; rather, insects follow a qualitatively distinct trajectory to many other animals. Here we present a mechanistic growth model for insects and show that increasing specific assimilation during the growth phase can explain the near-exponential growth trajectory of insects. The presented model is tested against growth data on 50 insects, and compared against other mechanistic growth models. Unlike the other mechanistic models, our growth model predicts energy reserves per biomass to increase with age, which implies a higher production efficiency and energy density of biomass in later instars. These predictions are tested against data compiled from the literature whereby it is confirmed that insects increase their production efficiency (by 24 percentage points) and energy density (by 4 J mg(-1)) between hatching and the attainment of full size. The model suggests that insects achieve greater production efficiencies and enhanced growth rates by increasing specific assimilation and increasing energy reserves per biomass, which are less costly to maintain than structural biomass. Our findings illustrate how the explanatory and predictive power of mechanistic growth models comes from their grounding in underlying biological processes. © 2015 The Author(s).

  8. Notes on collecting flower-visiting insects

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Willemstein, S.C.

    1974-01-01

    Flower-visiting insects may play a role in the pollination of the flowers they visit. An important indication for this is the pollen they carry on their body. The transport of pollen does not prove pollination without observations of the behaviour of the insects on the flowers, but at least it

  9. Insects associated with ponderosa pine in Colorado

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robert E. Stevens; J. Wayne Brewer; David A. Leatherman

    1980-01-01

    Ponderosa pine serves as a host for a wide variety of insects. Many of these, including all the particularly destructive ones in Colorado, are discussed in this report. Included are a key to the major insect groups, an annotated list of the major groups, a glossary, and a list of references.

  10. Insect and pest control newsletter. No. 54

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2000-01-01

    This Newsletter announces research coordination meetings, status of existing research coordinated research programmes on the use of nuclear applications such as the sterile insect technique (SIT) in insect and pest control. Training courses as well as new coordinated research programmes in the pipeline are also highlighted

  11. Insect and pest control newsletter. No. 56

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2001-01-01

    This Newsletter announces research coordination meetings, status of existing research coordinated research programmes on the use of nuclear applications such as the sterile insect technique (SIT) in insect and pest control. Training courses as well as new coordinated research programmes in the pipeline are also highlighted

  12. Insect and pest control newsletter. No. 52

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1998-12-01

    This Newsletter announces research coordination meetings, status of existing research coordinated research programmes on the use of nuclear applications such as the sterile insect technique (SIT) in insect and pest control. Training courses as well as new coordinated research programmes in the pipeline are also highlighted

  13. Insect and pest control newsletter. No. 50

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1997-10-01

    This Newsletter announces research coordination meetings, status of existing research coordinated research programmes on the use of nuclear applications such as the sterile insect technique (SIT) in insect and pest control. Training courses as well as new coordinated research programmes in the pipeline are also highlighted

  14. Insect and pest control newsletter. No. 51

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1998-06-01

    This Newsletter announces research coordination meetings, status of existing research coordinated research programmes on the use of nuclear applications such as the sterile insect technique (SIT) in insect and pest control. Training courses as well as new coordinated research programmes in the pipeline are also highlighted

  15. Feeding studies of irradiated foods with insects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Loaharanu, S.

    1978-01-01

    Insects are of value to man in many scientific studies. Microsomal detoxication systems exist in both insects and mammals. In the preliminary investigations it was found that irradiated cocoa beans and white and red kidney beans (Phaseolus spp.) did not significantly change the percentage of egg-hatch in the insects tested. In more detailed investigations food samples that are susceptible to insect spoilage and are representatives of widely consumed human foods were fed to various insect species. The development, sex distortion and reproductivity of the insects were investigated. Cytogenetic aberrations as related to dominant lethality were studied in insects with reasonably clear chromosomal patterns. The meiosis stage was examined, using the squash technique and Aceto-orcein staining. Black beans, Phaseolus spp., irradiated with up to 200 krad of gamma rays did not apparently change the percentage of survival and the sex ratio of the bean weevil, Zabrotes subfasciatus. Dominant lethality in the German cockroach, Blatella germanica, fed on irradiated black beans did not apparently occur when considering the results of cytological investigation and the number of offspring obtained. Dried sardine samples irradiated with up to 400 krad of gamma rays neither apparently affected the survival nor caused sex distortion in the cheese skipper, Piophila casei. This irradiated product apparently did not induce dominant lethality in the German cockroach as tested. Coffee processed from coffee beans that had been irradiated with up to 100 krad of gamma rays did not apparently cause adverse effects on the experimental insects. (author)

  16. Insect and pest control newsletter. No. 56

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2001-01-01

    This Newsletter announces research coordination meetings, status of existing research coordinated research programmes on the use of nuclear applications such as the sterile insect technique (SIT) in insect and pest control. Training courses as well as new coordinated research programmes in the pipeline are also highlighted.

  17. Insect and pest control newsletter. No. 55

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2000-07-01

    This Newsletter announces research coordination meetings, status of existing research coordinated research programmes on the use of nuclear applications such as the sterile insect technique (SIT) in insect and pest control. Training courses as well as new coordinated research programmes in the pipeline are also highlighted.

  18. Insect and pest control newsletter. No. 55

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2000-07-01

    This Newsletter announces research coordination meetings, status of existing research coordinated research programmes on the use of nuclear applications such as the sterile insect technique (SIT) in insect and pest control. Training courses as well as new coordinated research programmes in the pipeline are also highlighted

  19. Edible insects contributing to food security?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huis, van Arnold

    2015-01-01

    Because of growing demand for meat and declining availability of agricultural land, there is an urgent need to find alternative protein sources. Edible insects can be produced with less environmental impact than livestock. Insect meal can replace scarce fishmeal as feed ingredient, in particular

  20. Edible Insects in Sustainable Food Systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Halloran, Afton; Flore, Roberto; Vantomme, Paul

    This text provides an important overview of the contributions of edible insects to ecological sustainability, livelihoods, nutrition and health, food culture and food systems around the world. While insect farming for both food and feed is rapidly increasing in popularity around the world, the ro...

  1. Insect cadaver applications: pros and cons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Application of entomopathogenic nematodes (EPNs) formulated as insect cadavers has become an alternative to aqueous application for the control of agricultural pests. In this approach, the infected insect host cadaver is applied directly to the target site and pest suppression is achieved by the inf...

  2. Insect and pest control newsletter. No. 51

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1998-06-01

    This Newsletter announces research coordination meetings, status of existing research coordinated research programmes on the use of nuclear applications such as the sterile insect technique (SIT) in insect and pest control. Training courses as well as new coordinated research programmes in the pipeline are also highlighted.

  3. Potential applications of insect symbionts in biotechnology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berasategui, Aileen; Shukla, Shantanu; Salem, Hassan; Kaltenpoth, Martin

    2016-02-01

    Symbiotic interactions between insects and microorganisms are widespread in nature and are often the source of ecological innovations. In addition to supplementing their host with essential nutrients, microbial symbionts can produce enzymes that help degrade their food source as well as small molecules that defend against pathogens, parasites, and predators. As such, the study of insect ecology and symbiosis represents an important source of chemical compounds and enzymes with potential biotechnological value. In addition, the knowledge on insect symbiosis can provide novel avenues for the control of agricultural pest insects and vectors of human diseases, through targeted manipulation of the symbionts or the host-symbiont associations. Here, we discuss different insect-microbe interactions that can be exploited for insect pest and human disease control, as well as in human medicine and industrial processes. Our aim is to raise awareness that insect symbionts can be interesting sources of biotechnological applications and that knowledge on insect ecology can guide targeted efforts to discover microorganisms of applied value.

  4. The Evolution of Agriculture in Insects

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mueller, Ulrich G.; Gerardo, Nicole M.; Aanen, Duur Kornelis

    2005-01-01

    Agriculture has evolved independently in three insect orders: once in ants, once in termites, and seven times in ambrosia beetles. Although these insect farmers are in some ways quite different from each other, in many more ways they are remarkably similar, suggesting convergent evolution. All pr...

  5. Management of insect pests using semiochemical traps

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Baroffio, C. A.; Guibert, V.; Richoz, P.

    2016-01-01

    multitrap for the economical management of both of these pests at the same time. This is one of the first approaches to pest management of non-lepidopteran insect pests of horticultural crops using semiochemicals in the EU, and probably the first to target multiple species from different insect orders...

  6. Multiorganismal insects: diversity and function of resident microorganisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Douglas, Angela E

    2015-01-07

    All insects are colonized by microorganisms on the insect exoskeleton, in the gut and hemocoel, and within insect cells. The insect microbiota is generally different from microorganisms in the external environment, including ingested food. Specifically, certain microbial taxa are favored by the conditions and resources in the insect habitat, by their tolerance of insect immunity, and by specific mechanisms for their transmission. The resident microorganisms can promote insect fitness by contributing to nutrition, especially by providing essential amino acids, B vitamins, and, for fungal partners, sterols. Some microorganisms protect their insect hosts against pathogens, parasitoids, and other parasites by synthesizing specific toxins or modifying the insect immune system. Priorities for future research include elucidation of microbial contributions to detoxification, especially of plant allelochemicals in phytophagous insects, and resistance to pathogens; as well as their role in among-insect communication; and the potential value of manipulation of the microbiota to control insect pests.

  7. Diversity and phylogeny of insect trypanosomatids: all that is hidden shall be revealed

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Maslov, D. A.; Votýpka, Jan; Yurchenko, V.; Lukeš, Julius

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 29, č. 1 (2013), s. 43-52 ISSN 1471-4922 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA204/09/1667 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : biodiversity * Kinetoplastea * insect trypanosomatids * monoxenous parasites * phylogeny * taxonomy * Trypanosomatidae Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 6.217, year: 2013

  8. Dynamic recruitment of amino acid transporters to the insect/symbiont interface

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Duncan, R.P.; Husník, Filip; Van Leuven, J.T.; Gilbert, D.G.; Dávalos, L.M.; McCutcheon, J.P.; Wilson, A.C.C.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 23, č. 6 (2014), s. 1608-1623 ISSN 0962-1083 Grant - others:GA ČR(CZ) GA13-01878S Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : aphid * bacteriocyte * functional evolution * gene duplication * mealybug * sap-feeding insect Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 6.494, year: 2014

  9. Modern insect control: Nuclear techniques and biotechnology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1988-01-01

    The Symposium dealt primarily with genetic methods of insect control, including sterile insect technique (SIT), F 1 sterility, compound chromosomes, translocations and conditional lethals. Research and development activities on various aspects of these control technologies were reported by participants during the Symposium. Of particular interest was development of F 1 sterility as a practical method of controlling pest Lepidoptera. Genetic methods of insect control are applicable only on an area wide basis. They are species specific and thus do not reduce populations of beneficial insects or cause other environmental problems. Other papers presented reported on the potential use of radiation as a quarantine treatment for commodities in international trade and the use of radioisotopes as ''tags'' in studying insects

  10. Converting pest insects into food

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Offenberg, Hans Joachim; Wiwatwittaya, Decha

    2010-01-01

    Canopy dwelling weaver ants (Oecophylla spp.) are used to control a variety of pests in a number of tropical tree crops. What is less familiar is the existence of commercial markets where these ants and their brood are sold for (i) human consumption, (ii) pet food or (iii) traditional medicine...... on management, 32-115 kg ant brood (mainly new queens) was harvested per ha per year without detrimental effect on colony survival and worker ant densities. This suggest that ant biocontrol and ant harvest can be sustainable integrated in plantations and double benefits derived. As ant production is fuelled...... by pest insects, problematic pests are converted into food and additional earnings. To assess the profitability of providing additional food for the ants, O. smaragdina food conversion efficiency (ECI) was estimated in the laboratory. This estimate suggests the feeding of weaver ants in ant farms...

  11. Gene Disruption Technologies Have the Potential to Transform Stored Product Insect Pest Control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perkin, Lindsey C; Adrianos, Sherry L; Oppert, Brenda

    2016-09-19

    Stored product insects feed on grains and processed commodities manufactured from grain post-harvest, reducing the nutritional value and contaminating food. Currently, the main defense against stored product insect pests is the pesticide fumigant phosphine. Phosphine is highly toxic to all animals, but is the most effective and economical control method, and thus is used extensively worldwide. However, many insect populations have become resistant to phosphine, in some cases to very high levels. New, environmentally benign and more effective control strategies are needed for stored product pests. RNA interference (RNAi) may overcome pesticide resistance by targeting the expression of genes that contribute to resistance in insects. Most data on RNAi in stored product insects is from the coleopteran genetic model, Tribolium castaneum, since it has a strong RNAi response via injection of double stranded RNA (dsRNA) in any life stage. Additionally, Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR) technology has been suggested as a potential resource for new pest control strategies. In this review we discuss background information on both gene disruption technologies and summarize the advances made in terms of molecular pest management in stored product insects, mainly T. castaneum, as well as complications and future needs.

  12. Gene Disruption Technologies Have the Potential to Transform Stored Product Insect Pest Control

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lindsey C. Perkin

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Stored product insects feed on grains and processed commodities manufactured from grain post-harvest, reducing the nutritional value and contaminating food. Currently, the main defense against stored product insect pests is the pesticide fumigant phosphine. Phosphine is highly toxic to all animals, but is the most effective and economical control method, and thus is used extensively worldwide. However, many insect populations have become resistant to phosphine, in some cases to very high levels. New, environmentally benign and more effective control strategies are needed for stored product pests. RNA interference (RNAi may overcome pesticide resistance by targeting the expression of genes that contribute to resistance in insects. Most data on RNAi in stored product insects is from the coleopteran genetic model, Tribolium castaneum, since it has a strong RNAi response via injection of double stranded RNA (dsRNA in any life stage. Additionally, Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR technology has been suggested as a potential resource for new pest control strategies. In this review we discuss background information on both gene disruption technologies and summarize the advances made in terms of molecular pest management in stored product insects, mainly T. castaneum, as well as complications and future needs.

  13. 40 CFR 161.590 - Nontarget insect data requirements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... pollinators (4) CR CR CR CR CR CR TEP TEP 141-5 Nontarget insect testing—aquatic insects Acute toxicity to aquatic insects (5) 142-1 Aquatic insect life-cycle study (5) 142-1 Simulated or actual field testing for aquatic insects (5) 142-3 Nontarget insect testing—predators and parasites (5) 143-1thru 143-3 Key: CR...

  14. Smads and insect hemimetabolan metamorphosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santos, Carolina G; Fernandez-Nicolas, Ana; Belles, Xavier

    2016-09-01

    In contrast with Drosophila melanogaster, practically nothing is known about the involvement of the TGF-β signaling pathway in the metamorphosis of hemimetabolan insects. To partially fill this gap, we have studied the role of Smad factors in the metamorphosis of the German cockroach, Blattella germanica. In D. melanogaster, Mad is the canonical R-Smad of the BMP branch of the TGF-β signaling pathway, Smox is the canonical R-Smad of the TGF-β/Activin branch and Medea participates in both branches. In insects, metamorphosis is regulated by the MEKRE93 pathway, which starts with juvenile hormone (JH), whose signal is transduced by Methoprene-tolerant (Met), which stimulates the expression of Krüppel homolog 1 (Kr-h1) that acts to repress E93, the metamorphosis trigger. In B. germanica, metamorphosis is determined at the beginning of the sixth (final) nymphal instar (N6), when JH production ceases, the expression of Kr-h1 declines, and the transcription of E93 begins to increase. The RNAi of Mad, Smox and Medea in N6 of B. germanica reveals that the BMP branch of the TGF-β signaling pathway regulates adult ecdysis and wing extension, mainly through regulating the expression of bursicon, whereas the TGF-β/Activin branch contributes to increasing E93 and decreasing Kr-h1 at the beginning of N6, crucial for triggering adult morphogenesis, as well as to regulating the imaginal molt timing. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Phytoplasmas: bacteria that manipulate plants and insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hogenhout, Saskia A; Oshima, Kenro; Ammar, El-Desouky; Kakizawa, Shigeyuki; Kingdom, Heather N; Namba, Shigetou

    2008-07-01

    Superkingdom Prokaryota; Kingdom Monera; Domain Bacteria; Phylum Firmicutes (low-G+C, Gram-positive eubacteria); Class Mollicutes; Candidatus (Ca.) genus Phytoplasma. Ca. Phytoplasma comprises approximately 30 distinct clades based on 16S rRNA gene sequence analyses of approximately 200 phytoplasmas. Phytoplasmas are mostly dependent on insect transmission for their spread and survival. The phytoplasma life cycle involves replication in insects and plants. They infect the insect but are phloem-limited in plants. Members of Ca. Phytoplasma asteris (16SrI group phytoplasmas) are found in 80 monocot and dicot plant species in most parts of the world. Experimentally, they can be transmitted by approximately 30, frequently polyphagous insect species, to 200 diverse plant species. In plants, phytoplasmas induce symptoms that suggest interference with plant development. Typical symptoms include: witches' broom (clustering of branches) of developing tissues; phyllody (retrograde metamorphosis of the floral organs to the condition of leaves); virescence (green coloration of non-green flower parts); bolting (growth of elongated stalks); formation of bunchy fibrous secondary roots; reddening of leaves and stems; generalized yellowing, decline and stunting of plants; and phloem necrosis. Phytoplasmas can be pathogenic to some insect hosts, but generally do not negatively affect the fitness of their major insect vector(s). In fact, phytoplasmas can increase fecundity and survival of insect vectors, and may influence flight behaviour and plant host preference of their insect hosts. The most common practices are the spraying of various insecticides to control insect vectors, and removal of symptomatic plants. Phytoplasma-resistant cultivars are not available for the vast majority of affected crops.

  16. Molecular and phenotypic adaptation in social insect reproductive fluids

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Liberti, Joanito

    of sperm competition. The seminal fluid of ants and bees with multiply mated queens are known to have evolved proteins that are able to kill the sperm of rival males, but the identity of the proteins involved has remained poorly understood. I sequenced the seminal fluid proteomes of four fungus-growing ant...... species that span the evolutionary transition from single to multiple queen-mating in the fungus-growing ant phylogeny. I then reconstructed the evolutionary histories of these proteins and identified a number of their functions related to energy production, control of oxidative stress, and proteolysis...

  17. The global status of insect resistance to neonicotinoid insecticides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bass, Chris; Denholm, Ian; Williamson, Martin S; Nauen, Ralf

    2015-06-01

    The first neonicotinoid insecticide, imidacloprid, was launched in 1991. Today this class of insecticides comprises at least seven major compounds with a market share of more than 25% of total global insecticide sales. Neonicotinoid insecticides are highly selective agonists of insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and provide farmers with invaluable, highly effective tools against some of the world's most destructive crop pests. These include sucking pests such as aphids, whiteflies, and planthoppers, and also some coleopteran, dipteran and lepidopteran species. Although many insect species are still successfully controlled by neonicotinoids, their popularity has imposed a mounting selection pressure for resistance, and in several species resistance has now reached levels that compromise the efficacy of these insecticides. Research to understand the molecular basis of neonicotinoid resistance has revealed both target-site and metabolic mechanisms conferring resistance. For target-site resistance, field-evolved mutations have only been characterized in two aphid species. Metabolic resistance appears much more common, with the enhanced expression of one or more cytochrome P450s frequently reported in resistant strains. Despite the current scale of resistance, neonicotinoids remain a major component of many pest control programmes, and resistance management strategies, based on mode of action rotation, are of crucial importance in preventing resistance becoming more widespread. In this review we summarize the current status of neonicotinoid resistance, the biochemical and molecular mechanisms involved, and the implications for resistance management. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Insect pests of Eucalyptus and their control

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sen-Sarma, P K; Thakur, M L

    1983-12-01

    In India, about sixty odd species of insects have so far been recorded to be associated with Eucalyptus. Important pests are some xylophagous insects, sap suckers, defoliators and termites. Of these, stem and root borer, Celostrna scabrator Fabr, and some species of termites have been recognised as key pests, whereas Apogonia coriaces Waterhouse, Mimeta mundissima Walker (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae), Agrotis ipsilon Hufnagel (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae), Brachytrypus portenosus Lichtenstein and Gymmogryllus humeralis Walker (Orthoptera: Gryllidae) are likely to become potential pests in Eucalyptus nurseries. In this paper available information on insect pests of Eucalyptus, their bioecology and control measures have been presented.

  19. Humoral immune response to the entire human immunodeficiency virus envelope glycoprotein made in insect cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rusche, J.R.; Lynn, D.L.; Robert-Guroff, M.; Langlois, A.J.; Lyerly, H.K.; Carson, H.; Krohn, K.; Ranki, A.; Gallo, R.C.; Bolognesi, D.P.; Putney, S.D.

    1987-10-01

    The human immunodeficiency virus envelope gene was expressed in insect cells by using a Baculovirus expression vector. The protein has an apparent molecular mass of 160 kDa, appears on the surface of infected insect cells, and does not appear to be cleaved to glycoproteins gp120 and gp41. Goats immunized with the 160-kDa protein have high titers of antibody that neutralizes virus infection as measured by viral gene expression or cell cytolysis. In addition, immune sera can block fusion of human immunodeficiency virus-infected cells in culture. Both neutralization and fusion-blocking activities are bound to and eluted from immobilized gp120.

  20. Humoral immune response to the entire human immunodeficiency virus envelope glycoprotein made in insect cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rusche, J.R.; Lynn, D.L.; Robert-Guroff, M.

    1987-01-01

    The human immunodeficiency virus envelope gene was expressed in insect cells by using a Baculovirus expression vector. The protein has an apparent molecular mass of 160 kDa, appears on the surface of infected insect cells, and does not appear to be cleaved to glycoproteins gp120 and gp41. Goats immunized with the 160-kDa protein have high titers of antibody that neutralizes virus infection as measured by viral gene expression or cell cytolysis. In addition, immune sera can block fusion of human immunodeficiency virus-infected cells in culture. Both neutralization and fusion-blocking activities are bound to and eluted from immobilized gp120

  1. A role for Taiman in insect metamorphosis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jesus Lozano

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Recent studies in vitro have reported that the Methoprene-tolerant (Met and Taiman (Tai complex is the functional receptor of juvenile hormone (JH. Experiments in vivo of Met depletion have confirmed this factor's role in JH signal transduction, however, there is no equivalent data regarding Tai because its depletion in larval or nymphal stages of the beetle Tribolium castaneum and the bug Pyrrhocoris apterus results in 100% mortality. We have discovered that the cockroach Blattella germanica possesses four Tai isoforms resulting from the combination of two indels in the C-terminal region of the sequence. The presence of one equivalent indel-1 in Tai sequences in T. castaneum and other species suggests that Tai isoforms may be common in insects. Concomitant depletion of all four Tai isoforms in B. germanica resulted in 100% mortality, but when only the insertion 1 (IN-1 isoforms were depleted, mortality was significantly reduced and about half of the specimens experienced precocious adult development. This shows that Tai isoforms containing IN-1 are involved in transducing the JH signal that represses metamorphosis. Reporter assays indicated that both T. castaneum Tai isoforms, one that contains the IN-1 and another that does not (DEL-1 activated a JH response element (kJHRE in Krüppel homolog 1 in conjunction with Met and JH. The results indicate that Tai is involved in the molecular mechanisms that repress metamorphosis, at least in B. germanica, and highlight the importance of distinguishing Tai isoforms when studying the functions of this transcription factor in development and other processes.

  2. Phylogeny of economically important insect pests that infesting several crops species in Malaysia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghazali, Siti Zafirah; Zain, Badrul Munir Md.; Yaakop, Salmah

    2014-09-01

    This paper reported molecular data on insect pests of commercial crops in Peninsular Malaysia. Fifteen insect pests (Metisa plana, Calliteara horsefeldii, Cotesia vestalis, Bactrocera papayae, Bactrocera carambolae, Bactrocera latifrons, Conopomorpha cramella, Sesamia inferens, Chilo polychrysa, Rhynchophorus vulneratus, and Rhynchophorus ferrugineus) of nine crops were sampled (oil palm, coconut, paddy, cocoa, starfruit, angled loofah, guava, chili and mustard) and also four species that belong to the fern's pest (Herpetogramma platycapna) and storage and rice pests (Tribolium castaneum, Oryzaephilus surinamensis and Cadra cautella). The presented phylogeny summarized the initial phylogenetic hypothesis, which concerning by implementation of the economically important insect pests. In this paper, phylogenetic relationships among 39 individuals of 15 species that belonging to three orders under 12 genera were inferred from DNA sequences of mitochondrial marker, cytochrome oxidase subunit I (COI) and nuclear marker, ribosomal DNA 28S D2 region. The phylogenies resulted from the phylogenetic analyses of both genes are relatively similar, but differ in the sequence of evolution. Interestingly, this most recent molecular data of COI sequences data by using Bayesian Inference analysis resulted a more-resolved phylogeny that corroborated with traditional hypotheses of holometabolan relationships based on traditional hypotheses of holometabolan relationships and most of recently molecular study compared to 28S sequences. This finding provides the information on relationships of pests species, which infested several crops in Malaysia and also estimation on Holometabola's order relationships. The identification of the larval stages of insect pests could be done accurately, without waiting the emergence of adults and supported by the phylogenetic tree.

  3. The evolution of extreme altruism and inequality in insect societies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ratnieks, Francis L W; Helanterä, Heikki

    2009-11-12

    In eusocial organisms, some individuals specialize in reproduction and others in altruistic helping. The evolution of eusociality is, therefore, also the evolution of remarkable inequality. For example, a colony of honeybees (Apis mellifera) may contain 50 000 females all of whom can lay eggs. But 100 per cent of the females and 99.9 per cent of the males are offspring of the queen. How did such extremes evolve? Phylogenetic analyses show that high relatedness was almost certainly necessary for the origin of eusociality. However, even the highest family levels of kinship are insufficient to cause the extreme inequality seen in e.g. honeybees via 'voluntary altruism'. 'Enforced altruism' is needed, i.e. social pressures that deter individuals from attempting to reproduce. Coercion acts at two stages in an individual's life cycle. Queens are typically larger so larvae can be coerced into developing into workers by being given less food. Workers are coerced into working by 'policing', in which workers or the queen eat worker-laid eggs or aggress fertile workers. In some cases, individuals rebel, such as when stingless bee larvae develop into dwarf queens. The incentive to rebel is strong as an individual is the most closely related to its own offspring. However, because individuals gain inclusive fitness by rearing relatives, there is also a strong incentive to 'acquiesce' to social coercion. In a queenright honeybee colony, the policing of worker-laid eggs is very effective, which results in most workers working instead of attempting to reproduce. Thus, extreme altruism is due to both kinship and coercion. Altruism is frequently seen as a Darwinian puzzle but was not a puzzle that troubled Darwin. Darwin saw his difficulty in explaining how individuals that did not reproduce could evolve, given that natural selection was based on the accumulation of small heritable changes. The recognition that altruism is an evolutionary puzzle, and the solution was to wait another

  4. Toward a better understanding of the mechanisms of symbiosis: a comprehensive proteome map of a nascent insect symbiont.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Renoz, François; Champagne, Antoine; Degand, Hervé; Faber, Anne-Marie; Morsomme, Pierre; Foray, Vincent; Hance, Thierry

    2017-01-01

    Symbiotic bacteria are common in insects and can affect various aspects of their hosts' biology. Although the effects of insect symbionts have been clarified for various insect symbiosis models, due to the difficulty of cultivating them in vitro , there is still limited knowledge available on the molecular features that drive symbiosis. Serratia symbiotica is one of the most common symbionts found in aphids. The recent findings of free-living strains that are considered as nascent partners of aphids provide the opportunity to examine the molecular mechanisms that a symbiont can deploy at the early stages of the symbiosis (i.e., symbiotic factors). In this work, a proteomic approach was used to establish a comprehensive proteome map of the free-living S. symbiotica strain CWBI-2.3 T . Most of the 720 proteins identified are related to housekeeping or primary metabolism. Of these, 76 were identified as candidate proteins possibly promoting host colonization. Our results provide strong evidence that S. symbiotica CWBI-2.3 T is well-armed for invading insect host tissues, and suggest that certain molecular features usually harbored by pathogenic bacteria are no longer present. This comprehensive proteome map provides a series of candidate genes for further studies to understand the molecular cross-talk between insects and symbiotic bacteria.

  5. Toward a better understanding of the mechanisms of symbiosis: a comprehensive proteome map of a nascent insect symbiont

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    François Renoz

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Symbiotic bacteria are common in insects and can affect various aspects of their hosts’ biology. Although the effects of insect symbionts have been clarified for various insect symbiosis models, due to the difficulty of cultivating them in vitro, there is still limited knowledge available on the molecular features that drive symbiosis. Serratia symbiotica is one of the most common symbionts found in aphids. The recent findings of free-living strains that are considered as nascent partners of aphids provide the opportunity to examine the molecular mechanisms that a symbiont can deploy at the early stages of the symbiosis (i.e., symbiotic factors. In this work, a proteomic approach was used to establish a comprehensive proteome map of the free-living S. symbiotica strain CWBI-2.3T. Most of the 720 proteins identified are related to housekeeping or primary metabolism. Of these, 76 were identified as candidate proteins possibly promoting host colonization. Our results provide strong evidence that S. symbiotica CWBI-2.3T is well-armed for invading insect host tissues, and suggest that certain molecular features usually harbored by pathogenic bacteria are no longer present. This comprehensive proteome map provides a series of candidate genes for further studies to understand the molecular cross-talk between insects and symbiotic bacteria.

  6. Alpha particle radiography of small insects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chingshen Su

    1993-01-01

    Radiographies of ants, mosquitoes, cockroaches and small bugs have been done with a radioisotope 244 Cm alpha source. Energy of alpha particles was varied by attenuating the 5.81 MeV alpha particles with adjustable air spacings from the source to the sample. The LR-115 was used to register radiographs. The image of the insect registered on the LR-115 was etched out in a 2.5 N NaOH solution at 52 o C for certain minutes, depending on various irradiation conditions for the insects. For larger insects, a scanning device for the alpha particle irradiation has been fabricated to take the radiograph of whole body of the insect, and the scanning period can be selected to give desired irradiation dosage. A CCDTV camera system connected to a microscope interfaced to an IBM/AT computer is used to register the microscopic image of the radiograph and to print it out with a video copy processor. (Author)

  7. Learning in Insect Pollinators and Herbivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Patricia L; Agrawal, Anurag A

    2017-01-31

    The relationship between plants and insects is influenced by insects' behavioral decisions during foraging and oviposition. In mutualistic pollinators and antagonistic herbivores, past experience (learning) affects such decisions, which ultimately can impact plant fitness. The higher levels of dietary generalism in pollinators than in herbivores may be an explanation for the differences in learning seen between these two groups. Generalist pollinators experience a high level of environmental variation, which we suggest favors associative learning. Larval herbivores employ habituation and sensitization-strategies useful in their less variable environments. Exceptions to these patterns based on habitats, mobility, and life history provide critical tests of current theory. Relevant plant traits should be under selection to be easily learned and remembered in pollinators and difficult to learn in herbivores. Insect learning thereby has the potential to have an important, yet largely unexplored, role in plant-insect coevolution.

  8. Most Costly Insects & Diseases of Southern Hardwoods

    Science.gov (United States)

    T. H. Filer; J. D. Solomon

    1987-01-01

    Insect borers, especially carpenter worms and red oak borers, cause degrade in oaks, an average of $45 per thousand board feet, and an annual loss of $112 million in the 2.5 billion board feet of oaks cut annually.

  9. Insect Bites and Stings: First Aid

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Tips to remember. American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. http://www.aaaai.org/conditions-and-treatments/library/allergy-library/stinging-insect-allergy.aspx. Accessed Jan. 9, 2018. LoVecchio F. ...

  10. Harnessing Insect-Microbe Chemical Communications To Control Insect Pests of Agricultural Systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beck, John J; Vannette, Rachel L

    2017-01-11

    Insect pests cause serious economic, yield, and food safety problems to managed crops worldwide. Compounding these problems, insect pests often vector pathogenic or toxigenic microbes to plants. Previous work has considered plant-insect and plant-microbe interactions separately. Although insects are well-understood to use plant volatiles to locate hosts, microorganisms can produce distinct and abundant volatile compounds that in some cases strongly attract insects. In this paper, we focus on the microbial contribution to plant volatile blends, highlighting the compounds emitted and the potential for variation in microbial emission. We suggest that these aspects of microbial volatile emission may make these compounds ideal for use in agricultural applications, as they may be more specific or enhance methods currently used in insect control or monitoring. Our survey of microbial volatiles in insect-plant interactions suggests that these emissions not only signal host suitability but may indicate a distinctive time frame for optimal conditions for both insect and microbe. Exploitation of these host-specific microbe semiochemicals may provide important microbe- and host-based attractants and a basis for future plant-insect-microbe chemical ecology investigations.

  11. Synthesis of model compounds derived from natural clerodane insect antifeedants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Klein Gebbinck, E.A.

    1999-01-01

    Insect antifeedants are compounds with the ability to reduce or inhibit insect feeding without directly killing the insect. Such compounds offer a number of properties that are highly desirable in environmentally friendly crop protection agents. Although the principle of insect control

  12. Potential of Insect-Derived Ingredients for Food Applications

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tzompa Sosa, D.A.; Fogliano, V.

    2017-01-01

    Insects are a sustainable and efficient protein and lipid source, compared with conventional livestock. Moreover, insect proteins and lipids are highly nutritional. Therefore, insect proteins and lipids can find its place as food ingredients. The use of insect proteins and lipids as food ingredients

  13. Social insect symbionts: evolution in homeostatic fortresses

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hughes, David P; Pierce, Naomi E; Boomsma, Jacobus J

    2008-01-01

    The massive environmentally buffered nests of some social insects can contain millions of individuals and a wide variety of parasites, commensals and mutualists. We suggest that the ways in which these homeostatic fortress environments affect the evolution of social insect symbionts are relevant...... in these nests. We hypothesize that biodiversity gradients in these hotspots might be less affected by abiotic latitudinal clines than gradients in neighboring 'control' habitats. We suggest several research lines to test these ideas....

  14. Insect Cells as Hosts for Recombinat Proteins

    OpenAIRE

    Murwani, Retno

    1997-01-01

    Since the development of recombinant baculovirus expression system, insect cell culture has rapidly gain popularity as the method of choice for production of a variety of biologically active proteins. Up to date tens of recombinant protein have been produced by this method commercially or non-commercially and have been widely used for research. This review describes the basic concept of baculovirus expression vector and the use of insect cells as host for recombinant proteins. Examples of the...

  15. Minor lipophilic compounds in edible insects

    OpenAIRE

    Monika Sabolová; Anna Adámková; Lenka Kouřimská; Diana Chrpová; Jan Pánek

    2016-01-01

    Contemporary society is faced with the question how to ensure suffiecient nutrition (quantity and quality) for rapidly growing population. One solution can be consumption of edible insect, which can have very good nutritional value (dietary energy, protein, fatty acids, fibers, dietary minerals and vitamins composition). Some edible insects species, which contains a relatively large amount of fat, can have a potential to be a „good" (interesting, new) source of minor lipophilic compound...

  16. IMp: The customizable LEGO® Pinned Insect Manipulator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steen Dupont

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available We present a pinned insect manipulator (IMp constructed of LEGO® building bricks with two axes of movement and two axes of rotation. In addition we present three variants of the IMp to emphasise the modular design, which facilitates resizing to meet the full range of pinned insect specimens, is fully customizable, collapsible, affordable and does not require specialist tools or knowledge to assemble.

  17. IMp: The customizable LEGO® Pinned Insect Manipulator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dupont, Steen; Price, Benjamin; Blagoderov, Vladimir

    2015-01-01

    Abstract We present a pinned insect manipulator (IMp) constructed of LEGO® building bricks with two axes of movement and two axes of rotation. In addition we present three variants of the IMp to emphasise the modular design, which facilitates resizing to meet the full range of pinned insect specimens, is fully customizable, collapsible, affordable and does not require specialist tools or knowledge to assemble. PMID:25685035

  18. Ion channels: molecular targets of neuroactive insecticides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raymond-Delpech, Valérie; Matsuda, Kazuhiko; Sattelle, Benedict M; Rauh, James J; Sattelle, David B

    2005-11-01

    Many of the insecticides in current use act on molecular targets in the insect nervous system. Recently, our understanding of these targets has improved as a result of the complete sequencing of an insect genome, i.e., Drosophila melanogaster. Here we examine the recent work, drawing on genetics, genomics and physiology, which has provided evidence that specific receptors and ion channels are targeted by distinct chemical classes of insect control agents. The examples discussed include, sodium channels (pyrethroids, p,p'-dichlorodiphenyl-trichloroethane (DDT), dihydropyrazoles and oxadiazines); nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (cartap, spinosad, imidacloprid and related nitromethylenes/nitroguanidines); gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) receptors (cyclodienes, gamma-BHC and fipronil) and L-glutamate receptors (avermectins). Finally, we have examined the molecular basis of resistance to these molecules, which in some cases involves mutations in the molecular target, and we also consider the future impact of molecular genetic technologies in our understanding of the actions of neuroactive insecticides.

  19. Extracellular ice phase transitions in insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawes, T C

    2014-01-01

    At temperatures below their temperature of crystallization (Tc), the extracellular body fluids of insects undergo a phase transition from liquid to solid. Insects that survive the transition to equilibrium (complete freezing of the body fluids) are designated as freeze tolerant. Although this phenomenon has been reported and described in many Insecta, current nomenclature and theory does not clearly delineate between the process of transition (freezing) and the final solid phase itself (the frozen state). Thus freeze tolerant insects are currently, by convention, described in terms of the temperature at which the crystallization of their body fluids is initiated, Tc. In fact, the correct descriptor for insects that tolerate freezing is the temperature of equilibrium freezing, Tef. The process of freezing is itself a separate physical event with unique physiological stresses that are associated with ice growth. Correspondingly there are a number of insects whose physiological cryo-limits are very specifically delineated by this transitional envelope. The distinction also has considerable significance for our understanding of insect cryobiology: firstly, because the ability to manage endogenous ice growth is a fundamental segregator of cryotype; and secondly, because our understanding of internal ice management is still largely nascent.

  20. Attention-like processes in insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nityananda, Vivek

    2016-11-16

    Attention is fundamentally important for sensory systems to focus on behaviourally relevant stimuli. It has therefore been an important field of study in human psychology and neuroscience. Primates, however, are not the only animals that might benefit from attention-like processes. Other animals, including insects, also have to use their senses and select one among many stimuli to forage, avoid predators and find mates. They have evolved different mechanisms to reduce the information processed by their brains to focus on only relevant stimuli. What are the mechanisms used by insects to selectively attend to visual and auditory stimuli? Do these attention-like mechanisms achieve the same functions as they do in primates? To investigate these questions, I use an established framework for investigating attention in non-human animals that proposes four fundamental components of attention: salience filters, competitive selection, top-down sensitivity control and working memory. I discuss evidence for each of these component processes in insects and compare the characteristics of these processes in insects to what we know from primates. Finally, I highlight important outstanding questions about insect attention that need to be addressed for us to understand the differences and similarities between vertebrate and insect attention. © 2016 The Author(s).

  1. Tomographic reconstruction of neopterous carboniferous insect nymphs.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Russell Garwood

    Full Text Available Two new polyneopteran insect nymphs from the Montceau-les-Mines Lagerstätte of France are presented. Both are preserved in three dimensions, and are imaged with the aid of X-ray micro-tomography, allowing their morphology to be recovered in unprecedented detail. One-Anebos phrixos gen. et sp. nov.-is of uncertain affinities, and preserves portions of the antennae and eyes, coupled with a heavily spined habitus. The other is a roachoid with long antennae and chewing mouthparts very similar in form to the most generalized mandibulate mouthparts of extant orthopteroid insects. Computer reconstructions reveal limbs in both specimens, allowing identification of the segments and annulation in the tarsus, while poorly developed thoracic wing pads suggest both are young instars. This work describes the morphologically best-known Palaeozoic insect nymphs, allowing a better understanding of the juveniles' palaeobiology and palaeoecology. We also consider the validity of evidence from Palaeozoic juvenile insects in wing origin theories. The study of juvenile Palaeozoic insects is currently a neglected field, yet these fossils provide direct evidence on the evolution of insect development. It is hoped this study will stimulate a renewed interest in such work.

  2. The evolution of plant-insect mutualisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bronstein, Judith L; Alarcón, Ruben; Geber, Monica

    2006-01-01

    Mutualisms (cooperative interactions between species) have had a central role in the generation and maintenance of life on earth. Insects and plants are involved in diverse forms of mutualism. Here we review evolutionary features of three prominent insect-plant mutualisms: pollination, protection and seed dispersal. We focus on addressing five central phenomena: evolutionary origins and maintenance of mutualism; the evolution of mutualistic traits; the evolution of specialization and generalization; coevolutionary processes; and the existence of cheating. Several features uniting very diverse insect-plant mutualisms are identified and their evolutionary implications are discussed: the involvement of one mobile and one sedentary partner; natural selection on plant rewards; the existence of a continuum from specialization to generalization; and the ubiquity of cheating, particularly on the part of insects. Plant-insect mutualisms have apparently both arisen and been lost repeatedly. Many adaptive hypotheses have been proposed to explain these transitions, and it is unlikely that any one of them dominates across interactions differing so widely in natural history. Evolutionary theory has a potentially important, but as yet largely unfilled, role to play in explaining the origins, maintenance, breakdown and evolution of insect-plant mutualisms.

  3. Nutritional and sensory quality of edible insects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lenka Kouřimská

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Insects are for many nations and ethnic groups an indispensable part of the diet. From a nutritional point of view, insects have significant protein content. It varies from 20 to 76% of dry matter depending on the type and development stage of the insect. Fat content variability is large (2–50% of dry matter and depends on many factors. Total polyunsaturated fatty acids' content may be up to 70% of total fatty acids. Carbohydrates are represented mainly by chitin, whose content ranges between 2.7 mg and 49.8 mg per kg of fresh matter. Some species of edible insects contain a reasonable amount of minerals (K, Na, Ca, Cu, Fe, Zn, Mn and P as well as vitamins such as B group vitamins, vitamins A, D, E, K, and C. However their content is seasonal and dependent on the feed. From the hygienic point of view it should be pointed out that some insects may produce or contain toxic bioactive compounds. They may also contain residues of pesticides and heavy metals from the ecosystem. Adverse human allergic reactions to edible insects could be also a possible hazard. Keywords: Chitin, Entomophagy, Fat, Minerals, Proteins, Vitamins

  4. Anaphylaxis to Insect Venom Allergens

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ollert, Markus; Blank, Simon

    2015-01-01

    available for diagnostic measurement of specific IgE in venom-allergic patients. These recombinant venom allergens offer several promising possibilities for an improved diagnostic algorithm. Reviewed here are the current status, recent developments, and future perspectives of molecular diagnostics of venom...

  5. New Technologies for Insect-Resistant and Herbicide-Tolerant Plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lombardo, Luca; Coppola, Gerardo; Zelasco, Samanta

    2016-01-01

    The advent of modern molecular biology and recombinant DNA technology has resulted in a dramatic increase in the number of insect-resistant (IR) and herbicide-tolerant (HT) plant varieties, with great economic benefits for farmers. Nevertheless, the high selection pressure generated by control strategies for weed and insect populations has led to the evolution of herbicide and pesticide resistance. In the short term, the development of new techniques or the improvement of existing ones will provide further instruments to counter the appearance of resistant weeds and insects and to reduce the use of agrochemicals. In this review, we examine some of the most promising new technologies for developing IR and HT plants, such as genome editing and antisense technologies. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Expression of hybrid fusion protein (Cry1Ac::ASAL) in transgenic rice plants imparts resistance against multiple insect pests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boddupally, Dayakar; Tamirisa, Srinath; Gundra, Sivakrishna Rao; Vudem, Dashavantha Reddy; Khareedu, Venkateswara Rao

    2018-05-31

    To evolve rice varieties resistant to different groups of insect pests a fusion gene, comprising DI and DII domains of Bt Cry1Ac and carbohydrate binding domain of garlic lectin (ASAL), was constructed. Transgenic rice lines were generated and evaluated to assess the efficacy of Cry1Ac::ASAL fusion protein against three major pests, viz., yellow stem borer (YSB), leaf folder (LF) and brown planthopper (BPH). Molecular analyses of transgenic plants revealed stable integration and expression of the fusion gene. In planta insect bioassays on transgenics disclosed enhanced levels of resistance compared to the control plants. High insect mortality of YSB, LF and BPH was observed on transgenics compared to that of control plants. Furthermore, honeydew assays revealed significant decreases in the feeding ability of BPH on transgenic plants as compared to the controls. Ligand blot analysis, using BPH insects fed on cry1Ac::asal transgenic rice plants, revealed a modified receptor protein-binding pattern owing to its ability to bind to additional receptors in insects. The overall results authenticate that Cry1Ac::ASAL protein is endowed with remarkable entomotoxic effects against major lepidopteran and hemipteran insects. As such, the fusion gene appears promising and can be introduced into various other crops to control multiple insect pests.

  7. Transcription factor E93 specifies adult metamorphosis in hemimetabolous and holometabolous insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ureña, Enric; Manjón, Cristina; Franch-Marro, Xavier; Martín, David

    2014-05-13

    All immature animals undergo remarkable morphological and physiological changes to become mature adults. In winged insects, metamorphic changes either are limited to a few tissues (hemimetaboly) or involve a complete reorganization of most tissues and organs (holometaboly). Despite the differences, the genetic switch between immature and adult forms in both types of insects relies on the disappearance of the antimetamorphic juvenile hormone (JH) and the transcription factors Krüppel-homolog 1 (Kr-h1) and Broad-Complex (BR-C) during the last juvenile instar. Here, we show that the transcription factor E93 is the key determinant that promotes adult metamorphosis in both hemimetabolous and holometabolous insects, thus acting as the universal adult specifier. In the hemimetabolous insect Blattella germanica, BgE93 is highly expressed in metamorphic tissues, and RNA interference (RNAi)-mediated knockdown of BgE93 in the nymphal stage prevented the nymphal-adult transition, inducing endless reiteration of nymphal development, even in the absence of JH. We also find that BgE93 down-regulated BgKr-h1 and BgBR-C expression during the last nymphal instar of B. germanica, a key step necessary for proper adult differentiation. This essential role of E93 is conserved in holometabolous insects as TcE93 RNAi in Tribolium castaneum prevented pupal-adult transition and produced a supernumerary second pupa. In this beetle, TcE93 also represses expression of TcKr-h1 and TcBR-C during the pupal stage. Similar results were obtained in the more derived holometabolous insect Drosophila melanogaster, suggesting that winged insects use the same regulatory mechanism to promote adult metamorphosis. This study provides an important insight into the understanding of the molecular basis of adult metamorphosis.

  8. Microbiological Load of Edible Insects Found in Belgium

    OpenAIRE

    Rudy Caparros Megido; Sandrine Desmedt; Christophe Blecker; François Béra; Éric Haubruge; Taofic Alabi; Frédéric Francis

    2017-01-01

    Edible insects are gaining more and more attention as a sustainable source of animal protein for food and feed in the future. In Belgium, some insect products can be found on the market, and consumers are sourcing fresh insects from fishing stores or towards traditional markets to find exotic insects that are illegal and not sanitarily controlled. From this perspective, this study aims to characterize the microbial load of edible insects found in Belgium (i.e., fresh mealworms and house crick...

  9. A Molecular View of Autophagy in Lepidoptera

    OpenAIRE

    Romanelli, Davide; Casati, Barbara; Franzetti, Eleonora; Tettamanti, Gianluca

    2014-01-01

    Metamorphosis represents a critical phase in the development of holometabolous insects, during which the larval body is completely reorganized: in fact, most of the larval organs undergo remodeling or completely degenerate before the final structure of the adult insect is rebuilt. In the past, increasing evidence emerged concerning the intervention of autophagy and apoptosis in the cell death processes that occur in larval organs of Lepidoptera during metamorphosis, but a molecular characteri...

  10. Applying the sterile insect technique to the control of insect pests

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    LaChance, L.E.; Klassen, W.

    1991-01-01

    The sterile insect technique (SIT) is basically a novel twentieth century approach to insect birth control. It is species specific and exploits the mate seeking behaviour of the insect. The basic principle is simple. Insects are mass reared in 'factories' and sexually sterilized by gamma rays from a 60 Co source. The sterile insects are then released in a controlled fashion into nature. Matings between the sterile insects released and native insects produced no progeny. If enough of these matings take place, reproduction of the pest population decreases. With continued release, the pest population can be controlled and in some cases eradicated. In the light of the many important applications of the SIT worldwide and the great potential that SIT concepts hold for insect and pest control in developing countries, two special benefits should be stressed. Of greatest significance is the fact that the SIT permits suppression and eradication of insect pests in an environmentally harmless manner. It combines nuclear techniques with genetic approaches and, in effect, replaces intensive use of chemicals in pest control. Although chemicals are used sparingly at the outset in some SIT programmes to reduce the size of the pest population before releases of sterilized insects are started, the total amount of chemicals used in an SIT programme is a mere fraction of what would be used without the SIT. It is also of great importance that the SIT is not designed strictly for the eradication of pest species but can readily be used in the suppression of insect populations. In fact, the SIT is ideally suited for use in conjunction with other agricultural pest control practices such as the use of parasites and predators, attractants and cultural controls (e.g. ploughing under or destruction of crop residues) in integrated pest management programmes to achieve control at the lowest possible price and with a minimum of chemical contamination of the environment

  11. Applying the sterile insect technique to the control of insect pests

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    LaChance, L E; Klassen, W [Joint FAO/IAEA Division of Nuclear Techniques in Food and Agriculture, Vienna (Austria)

    1991-09-01

    The sterile insect technique (SIT) is basically a novel twentieth century approach to insect birth control. It is species specific and exploits the mate seeking behaviour of the insect. The basic principle is simple. Insects are mass reared in 'factories' and sexually sterilized by gamma rays from a {sup 60}Co source. The sterile insects are then released in a controlled fashion into nature. Matings between the sterile insects released and native insects produced no progeny. If enough of these matings take place, reproduction of the pest population decreases. With continued release, the pest population can be controlled and in some cases eradicated. In the light of the many important applications of the SIT worldwide and the great potential that SIT concepts hold for insect and pest control in developing countries, two special benefits should be stressed. Of greatest significance is the fact that the SIT permits suppression and eradication of insect pests in an environmentally harmless manner. It combines nuclear techniques with genetic approaches and, in effect, replaces intensive use of chemicals in pest control. Although chemicals are used sparingly at the outset in some SIT programmes to reduce the size of the pest population before releases of sterilized insects are started, the total amount of chemicals used in an SIT programme is a mere fraction of what would be used without the SIT. It is also of great importance that the SIT is not designed strictly for the eradication of pest species but can readily be used in the suppression of insect populations. In fact, the SIT is ideally suited for use in conjunction with other agricultural pest control practices such as the use of parasites and predators, attractants and cultural controls (e.g. ploughing under or destruction of crop residues) in integrated pest management programmes to achieve control at the lowest possible price and with a minimum of chemical contamination of the environment.

  12. Insect form vision as one potential shaping force of spider web decoration design.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, R-C; Yang, E-C; Lin, C-P; Herberstein, M E; Tso, I-M

    2010-03-01

    Properties of prey sensory systems are important factors shaping the design of signals generated by organisms exploiting them. In this study we assessed how prey sensory preference affected the exploiter signal design by investigating the evolutionary relationship and relative attractiveness of linear and cruciate form web decorations built by Argiope spiders. Because insects have an innate preference for bilaterally symmetrical patterns, we hypothesized that cruciate form decorations were evolved from linear form due to their higher visual attractiveness to insects. We first reconstructed a molecular phylogeny of the Asian members of the genus Argiope using mitochondrial markers to infer the evolutionary relationship of two decoration forms. Results of ancestral character state reconstruction showed that the linear form was ancestral and the cruciate form derived. To evaluate the luring effectiveness of two decoration forms, we performed field experiments in which the number and orientation of decoration bands were manipulated. Decoration bands arranged in a cruciate form were significantly more attractive to insects than those arranged in a linear form, no matter whether they were composed of silks or dummies. Moreover, dummy decoration bands arranged in a cruciate form attracted significantly more insects than those arranged in a vertical/horizontal form. Such results suggest that pollinator insects' innate preference for certain bilateral or radial symmetrical patterns might be one of the driving forces shaping the arrangement pattern of spider web decorations.

  13. Metabolomics reveals the heterogeneous secretome of two entomopathogenic fungi to ex vivo cultured insect tissues.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charissa de Bekker

    Full Text Available Fungal entomopathogens rely on cellular heterogeneity during the different stages of insect host infection. Their pathogenicity is exhibited through the secretion of secondary metabolites, which implies that the infection life history of this group of environmentally important fungi can be revealed using metabolomics. Here metabolomic analysis in combination with ex vivo insect tissue culturing shows that two generalist isolates of the genus Metarhizium and Beauveria, commonly used as biological pesticides, employ significantly different arrays of secondary metabolites during infectious and saprophytic growth. It also reveals that both fungi exhibit tissue specific strategies by a distinguishable metabolite secretion on the insect tissues tested in this study. In addition to showing the important heterogeneous nature of these two entomopathogens, this study also resulted in the discovery of several novel destruxins and beauverolides that have not been described before, most likely because previous surveys did not use insect tissues as a culturing system. While Beauveria secreted these cyclic depsipeptides when encountering live insect tissues, Metarhizium employed them primarily on dead tissue. This implies that, while these fungi employ comparable strategies when it comes to entomopathogenesis, there are most certainly significant differences at the molecular level that deserve to be studied.

  14. Co-evolution of insect proteases and plant protease inhibitors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jongsma, Maarten A; Beekwilder, Jules

    2011-08-01

    Plants are at the basis of the food chain, but there is no such thing as a "free lunch" for herbivores. To promote reproductive success, plants evolved multi-layered defensive tactics to avoid or discourage herbivory. To the detriment of plants, herbivores, in turn, evolved intricate strategies to find, eat, and successfully digest essential plant parts to raise their own offspring. In this battle the digestive tract is the arena determining final victory or defeat as measured by growth or starvation of the herbivore. Earlier, specific molecular opponents were identified as proteases and inhibitors: digestive proteases of herbivores evolved structural motifs to occlude plant protease inhibitors, or alternatively, the insects evolved proteases capable of specifically degrading the host plant inhibitors. In response plant inhibitors evolved hyper-variable and novel protein folds to remain active against potential herbivores. At the level of protease regulation in herbivorous insects, it was shown that inhibition-insensitive digestive proteases are up-regulated when sensitive proteases are inhibited. The way this regulation operates in mammals is known as negative feedback by gut-luminal factors, so-called 'monitor peptides' that are sensitive to the concentration of active enzymes. We propose that regulation of gut enzymes by endogenous luminal factors has been an open invitation to plants to "hijack" this regulation by evolving receptor antagonists, although yet these plant factors have not been identified. In future research the question of the co-evolution of insect proteases and plant inhibitors should, therefore, be better approached from a systems level keeping in mind that evolution is fundamentally opportunistic and that the plant's fitness is primarily improved by lowering the availability of essential amino acids to an herbivore by any available mechanism.

  15. Agricultural production - Phase 2. Indonesia. Insect ecology studies and insect pest control

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Butt, B.

    1992-01-01

    This document reviews the activities of the Pest Control Research Group in Indonesia. Pests under study are the diamondback moth (Plutella xylostella), the rice stem borer (Chilo suppressalis), the sugar cane borer (Chilo auricilius), bean flies (Agromyza spp.), tobacco insects (Heliothis armigera and Spodoptera litura) and cotton insects, especially the pink bollworm

  16. Multifunctional amaranth cystatin inhibits endogenous and digestive insect cysteine endopeptidases: A potential tool to prevent proteolysis and for the control of insect pests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valdés-Rodríguez, Silvia; Galván-Ramírez, Juan Pablo; Guerrero-Rangel, Armando; Cedro-Tanda, Alberto

    2015-01-01

    In a previous study, the amaranth cystatin was characterized. This cystatin is believed to provide protection from abiotic stress because its transcription is induced in response to heat, drought, and salinity. It has also been shown that recombinant amaranth cystatin inhibits bromelain, ficin, and cysteine endopeptidases from fungal sources and also inhibits the growth of phytopathogenic fungi. In the present study, evidence is presented regarding the potential function of amaranth cystatin as a regulator of endogenous proteinases and insect digestive proteinases. During amaranth germination and seedling growth, different proteolytic profiles were observed at different pH levels in gelatin-containing SDS-PAGE. Most of the proteolytic enzymes detected at pH 4.5 were mainly inhibited by trans-epoxysuccinyl-leucyl amido(4-guanidino)butane (E-64) and the purified recombinant amaranth cystatin. Furthermore, the recombinant amaranth cystatin was active against insect proteinases. In particular, the E-64-sensitive proteolytic digestive enzymes from Callosobruchus maculatus, Zabrotes subfasciatus, and Acanthoscelides obtectus were inhibited by the amaranth cystatin. Taken together, these results suggest multiple roles for cystatin in amaranth, specifically during germination and seedling growth and in the protection of A. hypochondriacus against insect predation. Amaranth cystatin represents a promising tool for diverse applications in the control of insect pest and for preventing undesirable proteolytic activity. © 2014 International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  17. Acoustic communication in insect disease vectors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Felipe de Mello Vigoder

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Acoustic signalling has been extensively studied in insect species, which has led to a better understanding of sexual communication, sexual selection and modes of speciation. The significance of acoustic signals for a blood-sucking insect was first reported in the XIX century by Christopher Johnston, studying the hearing organs of mosquitoes, but has received relatively little attention in other disease vectors until recently. Acoustic signals are often associated with mating behaviour and sexual selection and changes in signalling can lead to rapid evolutionary divergence and may ultimately contribute to the process of speciation. Songs can also have implications for the success of novel methods of disease control such as determining the mating competitiveness of modified insects used for mass-release control programs. Species-specific sound “signatures” may help identify incipient species within species complexes that may be of epidemiological significance, e.g. of higher vectorial capacity, thereby enabling the application of more focussed control measures to optimise the reduction of pathogen transmission. Although the study of acoustic communication in insect vectors has been relatively limited, this review of research demonstrates their value as models for understanding both the functional and evolutionary significance of acoustic communication in insects.

  18. Mechanosensation and Adaptive Motor Control in Insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tuthill, John C; Wilson, Rachel I

    2016-10-24

    The ability of animals to flexibly navigate through complex environments depends on the integration of sensory information with motor commands. The sensory modality most tightly linked to motor control is mechanosensation. Adaptive motor control depends critically on an animal's ability to respond to mechanical forces generated both within and outside the body. The compact neural circuits of insects provide appealing systems to investigate how mechanical cues guide locomotion in rugged environments. Here, we review our current understanding of mechanosensation in insects and its role in adaptive motor control. We first examine the detection and encoding of mechanical forces by primary mechanoreceptor neurons. We then discuss how central circuits integrate and transform mechanosensory information to guide locomotion. Because most studies in this field have been performed in locusts, cockroaches, crickets, and stick insects, the examples we cite here are drawn mainly from these 'big insects'. However, we also pay particular attention to the tiny fruit fly, Drosophila, where new tools are creating new opportunities, particularly for understanding central circuits. Our aim is to show how studies of big insects have yielded fundamental insights relevant to mechanosensation in all animals, and also to point out how the Drosophila toolkit can contribute to future progress in understanding mechanosensory processing. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Veins improve fracture toughness of insect wings.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan-Henning Dirks

    Full Text Available During the lifetime of a flying insect, its wings are subjected to mechanical forces and deformations for millions of cycles. Defects in the micrometre thin membranes or veins may reduce the insect's flight performance. How do insects prevent crack related material failure in their wings and what role does the characteristic vein pattern play? Fracture toughness is a parameter, which characterises a material's resistance to crack propagation. Our results show that, compared to other body parts, the hind wing membrane of the migratory locust S. gregaria itself is not exceptionally tough (1.04±0.25 MPa√m. However, the cross veins increase the wing's toughness by 50% by acting as barriers to crack propagation. Using fracture mechanics, we show that the morphological spacing of most wing veins matches the critical crack length of the material (1132 µm. This finding directly demonstrates how the biomechanical properties and the morphology of locust wings are functionally correlated in locusts, providing a mechanically 'optimal' solution with high toughness and low weight. The vein pattern found in insect wings thus might inspire the design of more durable and lightweight artificial 'venous' wings for micro-air-vehicles. Using the vein spacing as indicator, our approach might also provide a basis to estimate the wing properties of endangered or extinct insect species.

  20. Biological basis of the sterile insect technique

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lance, D.R.; McInnis, D.O.

    2005-01-01

    In principle, the sterile insect technique (SIT) is applicable to controlling a wide variety of insect pests, but biological factors, interacting with socio-economic and political forces, restrict its practical use to a narrower set of pest species and situations. This chapter reviews how the biology and ecology of a given pest affect the feasibility and logistics of developing and using the SIT against that pest insect. The subjects of pest abundance, distribution, and population dynamics are discussed in relation to producing and delivering sufficient sterile insects to control target populations. Pest movement and distribution are considered as factors that influence the feasibility and design of SIT projects, including the need for population- or area-wide management approaches. Biological characteristics, that affect the ability of sterile insects to interact with wild populations, are presented, including the nature of mating systems of pests, behavioural and physiological consequences of mass production and sterilization, and mechanisms that males use to block a female's acquisition and/or use of sperm from other males. An adequate knowledge of the biology of the pest species and potential target populations is needed, both for making sound decisions on whether integration of the SIT into an area-wide integrated pest management (AW-IPM) programme is appropriate, and for the efficient and effective application of the technique. (author)

  1. Ubx regulates differential enlargement and diversification of insect hind legs.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Najmus Mahfooz

    2007-09-01

    Full Text Available Differential enlargement of hind (T3 legs represents one of the hallmarks of insect evolution. However, the actual mechanism(s responsible are yet to be determined. To address this issue, we have now studied the molecular basis of T3 leg enlargement in Oncopeltus fasciatus (milkweed bug and Acheta domesticus (house cricket. In Oncopeltus, the T3 tibia displays a moderate increase in size, whereas in Acheta, the T3 femur, tibia, and tarsus are all greatly enlarged. Here, we show that the hox gene Ultrabithorax (Ubx is expressed in the enlarged segments of hind legs. Furthermore, we demonstrate that depletion of Ubx during embryogenesis has a primary effect in T3 legs and causes shortening of leg segments that are enlarged in a wild type. This result shows that Ubx is regulating the differential growth and enlargement of T3 legs in both Oncopeltus and Acheta. The emerging view suggests that Ubx was co-opted for a novel role in regulating leg growth and that the transcriptional modification of its expression may be a universal mechanism for the evolutionary diversification of insect hind legs.

  2. Respiratory and Metabolic Impacts of Crustacean Immunity: Are there Implications for the Insects?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burnett, Karen G; Burnett, Louis E

    2015-11-01

    Extensive similarities in the molecular architecture of the crustacean immune system to that of insects give credence to the current view that the Hexapoda, including Insecta, arose within the clade Pancrustacea. The crustacean immune system is mediated largely by hemocytes, relying on suites of pattern recognition receptors, effector functions, and signaling pathways that parallel those of insects. In crustaceans, as in insects, the cardiovascular system facilitates movement of hemocytes and delivery of soluble immune factors, thereby supporting immune surveillance and defense along with other physiological functions such as transport of nutrients, wastes, and hormones. Crustaceans also rely heavily on their cardiovascular systems to mediate gas exchange; insects are less reliant on internal circulation for this function. Among the largest crustaceans, the decapods have developed a condensed heart and a highly arteriolized cardiovascular system that supports the metabolic demands of their often large body size. However, recent studies indicate that mounting an immune response can impair gas exchange and metabolism in their highly developed vascular system. When circulating hemocytes detect the presence of potential pathogens, they aggregate rapidly with each other and with the pathogen. These growing aggregates can become trapped in the microvasculature of the gill where they are melanized and may be eliminated at the next molt. Prior to molting, trapped aggregates of hemocytes also can impair hemolymph flow and oxygenation at the gill. Small shifts to anaerobic metabolism only partially compensate for this decrease in oxygen uptake. The resulting metabolic depression is likely to impact other energy-expensive cellular processes and whole-animal performance. For crustaceans that often live in microbially-rich, but oxygen-poor aquatic environments, there appear to be distinct tradeoffs, based on the gill's multiple roles in respiration and immunity. Insects have

  3. Plant Secondary Metabolites Modulate Insect Behavior-Steps Toward Addiction?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Wink

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Plants produce a diversity of secondary metabolites (PSMs that serve as defense compounds against herbivores and microorganisms. In addition, some PSMs attract animals for pollination and seed dispersal. In case of pollinating insects, PSMs with colors or terpenoids with fragrant odors attract pollinators in the first place, but when they arrive at a flower, they are rewarded with nectar, so that the pollinators do not feed on flowers. In order to be effective as defense chemicals, PSMs evolved as bioactive substances, that can interfere with a large number of molecular targets in cells, tissues and organs of animals or of microbes. The known functions of PSMs are summarized in this review. A number of PSMs evolved as agonists or antagonists of neuronal signal transduction. Many of these PSMs are alkaloids. Several of them share structural similarities to neurotransmitters. Evidence for neuroactive and psychoactive PSMs in animals will be reviewed. Some of the neuroactive PSMs can cause addiction in humans and other vertrebrates. Why should a defense compound be addictive and thus attract more herbivores? Some insects are food specialists that can feed on plants that are normally toxic to other herbivores. These specialists can tolerate the toxins and many are stored in the insect body as acquired defense chemicals against predators. A special case are pyrrolizidine alkaloids (PAs that are neurotoxic and mutagenic in vertebrates. PAs are actively sequestered by moths of the family Arctiidae and a few other groups of arthropods. In arctiids, PAs are not only used for defense, but also serve as morphogens for the induction of male coremata and as precursors for male pheromones. Caterpillars even feed on filter paper impregnated with pure PAs (that modulate serotonin receptors in vertebrates and maybe even in insects and thus show of behavior with has similarities to addiction in vertebrates. Not only PA specialists, but also many monophagous

  4. Action on the Surface: Entomopathogenic Fungi versus the Insect Cuticle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortiz-Urquiza, Almudena; Keyhani, Nemat O

    2013-07-16

    Infections mediated by broad host range entomopathogenic fungi represent seminal observations that led to one of the first germ theories of disease and are a classic example of a co-evolutionary arms race between a pathogen and target hosts. These fungi are able to parasitize susceptible hosts via direct penetration of the cuticle with the initial and potentially determining interaction occurring between the fungal spore and the insect epicuticle. Entomogenous fungi have evolved mechanisms for adhesion and recognition of host surface cues that help direct an adaptive response that includes the production of: (a) hydrolytic, assimilatory, and/or detoxifying enzymes including lipase/esterases, catalases, cytochrome P450s, proteases, and chitinases; (b) specialized infectious structures, e.g., appressoria or penetrant tubes; and (c) secondary and other metabolites that facilitate infection. Aside from immune responses, insects have evolved a number of mechanisms to keep pathogens at bay that include: (a) the production of (epi) cuticular antimicrobial lipids, proteins, and metabolites; (b) shedding of the cuticle during development; and (c) behavioral-environmental adaptations such as induced fever, burrowing, and grooming, as well as potentially enlisting the help of other microbes, all intended to stop the pathogen before it can breach the cuticle. Virulence and host-defense can be considered to be under constant reciprocal selective pressure, and the action on the surface likely contributes to phenomena such as strain variation, host range, and the increased virulence often noted once a (low) virulent strain is "passaged" through an insect host. Since the cuticle represents the first point of contact and barrier between the fungus and the insect, the "action on the surface" may represent the defining interactions that ultimately can lead either to successful mycosis by the pathogen or successful defense by the host. Knowledge concerning the molecular mechanisms

  5. Freshwater biodiversity and aquatic insect diversification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dijkstra, Klaas-Douwe B; Monaghan, Michael T; Pauls, Steffen U

    2014-01-01

    Inland waters cover less than 1% of Earth's surface but harbor more than 6% of all insect species: Nearly 100,000 species from 12 orders spend one or more life stages in freshwater. Little is known about how this remarkable diversity arose, although allopatric speciation and ecological adaptation are thought to be primary mechanisms. Freshwater habitats are highly susceptible to environmental change and exhibit marked ecological gradients. Standing waters appear to harbor more dispersive species than running waters, but there is little understanding of how this fundamental ecological difference has affected diversification. In contrast to the lack of evolutionary studies, the ecology and habitat preferences of aquatic insects have been intensively studied, in part because of their widespread use as bioindicators. The combination of phylogenetics with the extensive ecological data provides a promising avenue for future research, making aquatic insects highly suitable models for the study of ecological diversification.

  6. Unraveling navigational strategies in migratory insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merlin, Christine; Heinze, Stanley; Reppert, Steven M

    2012-04-01

    Long-distance migration is a strategy some animals use to survive a seasonally changing environment. To reach favorable grounds, migratory animals have evolved sophisticated navigational mechanisms that rely on a map and compasses. In migratory insects, the existence of a map sense (sense of position) remains poorly understood, but recent work has provided new insights into the mechanisms some compasses use for maintaining a constant bearing during long-distance navigation. The best-studied directional strategy relies on a time-compensated sun compass, used by diurnal insects, for which neural circuits have begun to be delineated. Yet, a growing body of evidence suggests that migratory insects may also rely on other compasses that use night sky cues or the Earth's magnetic field. Those mechanisms are ripe for exploration. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Parametric structural modeling of insect wings

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mengesha, T E; Vallance, R R; Barraja, M; Mittal, R

    2009-01-01

    Insects produce thrust and lift forces via coupled fluid-structure interactions that bend and twist their compliant wings during flapping cycles. Insight into this fluid-structure interaction is achieved with numerical modeling techniques such as coupled finite element analysis and computational fluid dynamics, but these methods require accurate and validated structural models of insect wings. Structural models of insect wings depend principally on the shape, dimensions and material properties of the veins and membrane cells. This paper describes a method for parametric modeling of wing geometry using digital images and demonstrates the use of the geometric models in constructing three-dimensional finite element (FE) models and simple reduced-order models. The FE models are more complete and accurate than previously reported models since they accurately represent the topology of the vein network, as well as the shape and dimensions of the veins and membrane cells. The methods are demonstrated by developing a parametric structural model of a cicada forewing.

  8. Acetic Acid Bacteria as Symbionts of Insects

    KAUST Repository

    Crotti, Elena; Chouaia, Bessem; Alma, Alberto; Favia, Guido; Bandi, Claudio; Bourtzis, Kostas; Daffonchio, Daniele

    2016-01-01

    Acetic acid bacteria (AAB) are being increasingly described as associating with different insect species that rely on sugar-based diets. AAB have been found in several insect orders, among them Diptera, Hemiptera, and Hymenoptera, including several vectors of plant, animal, and human diseases. AAB have been shown to associate with the epithelia of different organs of the host, they are able to move within the insect’s body and to be transmitted horizontally and vertically. Here, we review the ecology of AAB and examine their relationships with different insect models including mosquitoes, leafhoppers, and honey bees. We also discuss the potential use of AAB in symbiont-based control strategies, such as “Trojan-horse” agents, to block the transmission of vector-borne diseases.

  9. Acetic Acid Bacteria as Symbionts of Insects

    KAUST Repository

    Crotti, Elena

    2016-06-14

    Acetic acid bacteria (AAB) are being increasingly described as associating with different insect species that rely on sugar-based diets. AAB have been found in several insect orders, among them Diptera, Hemiptera, and Hymenoptera, including several vectors of plant, animal, and human diseases. AAB have been shown to associate with the epithelia of different organs of the host, they are able to move within the insect’s body and to be transmitted horizontally and vertically. Here, we review the ecology of AAB and examine their relationships with different insect models including mosquitoes, leafhoppers, and honey bees. We also discuss the potential use of AAB in symbiont-based control strategies, such as “Trojan-horse” agents, to block the transmission of vector-borne diseases.

  10. New feed ingredients: the insect opportunity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Raamsdonk, L W D; van der Fels-Klerx, H J; de Jong, J

    2017-08-01

    In the framework of sustainability and a circular economy, new ingredients for feed are desired and, to this end, initiatives for implementing such novel ingredients have been started. The initiatives include a range of different sources, of which insects are of particular interest. Within the European Union, generally, a new feed ingredient should comply with legal constraints in terms of 'yes, provided that' its safety commits to a range of legal limits for heavy metals, mycotoxins, pesticides, contaminants, pathogens etc. In the case of animal proteins, however, a second legal framework applies which is based on the principle 'no, unless'. This legislation for eradicating transmissible spongiform encephalopathy consists of prohibitions with a set of derogations applying to specific situations. Insects are currently considered animal proteins. The use of insect proteins is a good case to illustrate this difference between a positive, although restricted, modus and a negative modus for allowing animal proteins. This overview presents aspects in the areas of legislation, feed safety, environmental issues, efficiency and detection of the identity of insects. Use of insects as an extra step in the feed production chain costs extra energy and this results in a higher footprint. A measure for energy conversion should be used to facilitate the comparison between production systems based on cold- versus warm-blooded animals. Added value can be found by applying new commodities for rearing, including but not limited to category 2 animal by-products, catering and household waste including meat, and manure. Furthermore, monitoring of a correct use of insects is one possible approach for label control, traceability and prevention of fraud. The link between legislation and enforcement is strong. A principle called WISE (Witful, Indicative, Societal demands, Enforceable) is launched for governing the relationship between the above-mentioned aspects.

  11. Integrative taxonomy for continental-scale terrestrial insect observations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cara M Gibson

    Full Text Available Although 21(st century ecology uses unprecedented technology at the largest spatio-temporal scales in history, the data remain reliant on sound taxonomic practices that derive from 18(th century science. The importance of accurate species identifications has been assessed repeatedly and in instances where inappropriate assignments have been made there have been costly consequences. The National Ecological Observatory Network (NEON will use a standardized system based upon an integrative taxonomic foundation to conduct observations of the focal terrestrial insect taxa, ground beetles and mosquitoes, at the continental scale for a 30 year monitoring program. The use of molecular data for continental-scale, multi-decadal research conducted by a geographically widely distributed set of researchers has not been evaluated until this point. The current paper addresses the development of a reference library for verifying species identifications at NEON and the key ways in which this resource will enhance a variety of user communities.

  12. Integrative Taxonomy for Continental-Scale Terrestrial Insect Observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibson, Cara M.; Kao, Rebecca H.; Blevins, Kali K.; Travers, Patrick D.

    2012-01-01

    Although 21st century ecology uses unprecedented technology at the largest spatio-temporal scales in history, the data remain reliant on sound taxonomic practices that derive from 18th century science. The importance of accurate species identifications has been assessed repeatedly and in instances where inappropriate assignments have been made there have been costly consequences. The National Ecological Observatory Network (NEON) will use a standardized system based upon an integrative taxonomic foundation to conduct observations of the focal terrestrial insect taxa, ground beetles and mosquitoes, at the continental scale for a 30 year monitoring program. The use of molecular data for continental-scale, multi-decadal research conducted by a geographically widely distributed set of researchers has not been evaluated until this point. The current paper addresses the development of a reference library for verifying species identifications at NEON and the key ways in which this resource will enhance a variety of user communities. PMID:22666362

  13. Insect pathogens as biological control agents: Back to the future.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lacey, L A; Grzywacz, D; Shapiro-Ilan, D I; Frutos, R; Brownbridge, M; Goettel, M S

    2015-11-01

    combine the advantages of chemical pesticides and MCAs: they are fast acting, easy to produce at a relatively low cost, easy to formulate, have a long shelf life and allow delivery using conventional application equipment and systemics (i.e. in transgenic plants). Unlike broad spectrum chemical pesticides, B. thuringiensis toxins are selective and negative environmental impact is very limited. Of the several commercially produced MCAs, B. thuringiensis (Bt) has more than 50% of market share. Extensive research, particularly on the molecular mode of action of Bt toxins, has been conducted over the past two decades. The Bt genes used in insect-resistant transgenic crops belong to the Cry and vegetative insecticidal protein families of toxins. Bt has been highly efficacious in pest management of corn and cotton, drastically reducing the amount of broad spectrum chemical insecticides used while being safe for consumers and non-target organisms. Despite successes, the adoption of Bt crops has not been without controversy. Although there is a lack of scientific evidence regarding their detrimental effects, this controversy has created the widespread perception in some quarters that Bt crops are dangerous for the environment. In addition to discovery of more efficacious isolates and toxins, an increase in the use of Bt products and transgenes will rely on innovations in formulation, better delivery systems and ultimately, wider public acceptance of transgenic plants expressing insect-specific Bt toxins. Fungi are ubiquitous natural entomopathogens that often cause epizootics in host insects and possess many desirable traits that favor their development as MCAs. Presently, commercialized microbial pesticides based on entomopathogenic fungi largely occupy niche markets. A variety of molecular tools and technologies have recently allowed reclassification of numerous species based on phylogeny, as well as matching anamorphs (asexual forms) and teleomorphs (sexual forms) of several

  14. RNA interference: Applications and advances in insect toxicology and insect pest management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Young Ho; Soumaila Issa, Moustapha; Cooper, Anastasia M W; Zhu, Kun Yan

    2015-05-01

    Since its discovery, RNA interference (RNAi) has revolutionized functional genomic studies due to its sequence-specific nature of post-transcriptional gene silencing. In this paper, we provide a comprehensive review of the recent literature and summarize the current knowledge and advances in the applications of RNAi technologies in the field of insect toxicology and insect pest management. Many recent studies have focused on identification and validation of the genes encoding insecticide target proteins, such as acetylcholinesterases, ion channels, Bacillus thuringiensis receptors, and other receptors in the nervous system. RNAi technologies have also been widely applied to reveal the role of genes encoding cytochrome P450 monooxygenases, carboxylesterases, and glutathione S-transferases in insecticide detoxification and resistance. More recently, studies have focused on understanding the mechanism of insecticide-mediated up-regulation of detoxification genes in insects. As RNAi has already shown great potentials for insect pest management, many recent studies have also focused on host-induced gene silencing, in which several RNAi-based transgenic plants have been developed and tested as proof of concept for insect pest management. These studies indicate that RNAi is a valuable tool to address various fundamental questions in insect toxicology and may soon become an effective strategy for insect pest management. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Allergen immunotherapy for insect venom allergy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dhami, S; Zaman, H; Varga, E-M

    2016-01-01

    BACKGROUND: The European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology (EAACI) is in the process of developing the EAACI Guidelines on Allergen Immunotherapy (AIT) for the management of insect venom allergy. To inform this process, we sought to assess the effectiveness, cost-effectiveness and safety...... of AIT in the management of insect venom allergy. METHODS: We undertook a systematic review, which involved searching 15 international biomedical databases for published and unpublished evidence. Studies were independently screened and critically appraised using established instruments. Data were...

  16. Trace conditioning in insects-keep the trace!

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dylla, Kristina V; Galili, Dana S; Szyszka, Paul; Lüdke, Alja

    2013-01-01

    Trace conditioning is a form of associative learning that can be induced by presenting a conditioned stimulus (CS) and an unconditioned stimulus (US) following each other, but separated by a temporal gap. This gap distinguishes trace conditioning from classical delay conditioning, where the CS and US overlap. To bridge the temporal gap between both stimuli and to form an association between CS and US in trace conditioning, the brain must keep a neural representation of the CS after its termination-a stimulus trace. Behavioral and physiological studies on trace and delay conditioning revealed similarities between the two forms of learning, like similar memory decay and similar odor identity perception in invertebrates. On the other hand differences were reported also, like the requirement of distinct brain structures in vertebrates or disparities in molecular mechanisms in both vertebrates and invertebrates. For example, in commonly used vertebrate conditioning paradigms the hippocampus is necessary for trace but not for delay conditioning, and Drosophila delay conditioning requires the Rutabaga adenylyl cyclase (Rut-AC), which is dispensable in trace conditioning. It is still unknown how the brain encodes CS traces and how they are associated with a US in trace conditioning. Insects serve as powerful models to address the mechanisms underlying trace conditioning, due to their simple brain anatomy, behavioral accessibility and established methods of genetic interference. In this review we summarize the recent progress in insect trace conditioning on the behavioral and physiological level and emphasize similarities and differences compared to delay conditioning. Moreover, we examine proposed molecular and computational models and reassess different experimental approaches used for trace conditioning.

  17. Trace conditioning in insects – Keep the trace!

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristina V Dylla

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Trace conditioning is a form of associative learning that can be induced by presenting a conditioned stimulus (CS and an unconditioned stimulus (US following each other, but separated by a temporal gap. This gap distinguishes trace conditioning from classical delay conditioning, where the CS and US overlap. To bridge the temporal gap between both stimuli and to form an association between CS and US in trace conditioning, the brain must keep a neural representation of the CS after its termination – a stimulus trace. Behavioral and physiological studies on trace and delay conditioning revealed similarities between the two forms of learning, like similar memory decay and similar odor identity perception in invertebrates. On the other hand differences were reported also, like the requirement of distinct brain structures in vertebrates or disparities in molecular mechanisms in both vertebrates and invertebrates. For example, in commonly used vertebrate conditioning paradigms the hippocampus is necessary for trace but not for delay conditioning, and Drosophila delay conditioning requires the Rutabaga adenylyl cyclase, which is dispensable in trace conditioning. It is still unknown how the brain encodes CS traces and how they are associated with a US in trace conditioning. Insects serve as powerful models to address the mechanisms underlying trace conditioning, due to their simple brain anatomy, behavioral accessibility and established methods of genetic interference. In this review we summarize the recent progress in insect trace conditioning on the behavioral and physiological level and emphasize similarities and differences compared to delay conditioning. Moreover, we examine proposed molecular and computational models and reassess different experimental approaches used for trace conditioning.

  18. Supercoiled circular DNA of an insect granulosis virus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tweeten, K A; Bulla, L A; Consigli, R A

    1977-08-01

    The DNA of the granulosis virus of the Indian meal moth, Plodia interpunctella, was characterized by physical chemical and electron microscopic techniques. Twenty-five percent of the DNA extracted from purified virus was isolated as supercoiled circular molecules. The remaining 75% consisted of relaxed circular molecules. These molecular forms were indicated by the production of two radioactive bands during sedimentation of (3)H-labeled granulosis virus DNA in alkaline sucrose gradients or in equilibrium density gradients of neutral cesium chloride/propidium iodide. Electron microscopic visualization of the DNA that banded at the higher density in the latter gradients revealed supercoiled structures whereas that of DNA that banded at the lower density demonstrated relaxed circular molecules. The superhelical molecules were converted to relaxed circles by treatment with pancreatic DNase. The molecular weight of the viral DNA was calculated to be 81 x 10(6) by sedimentation in neutral sucrose and 78 x 10(6) by sedimentation in alkaline sucrose. The molecular weight estimated from length measurements in electron micrographs was 76 x 10(6). The buoyant density of the granulosis virus DNA was 1.703 g/cm(3) and that of its insect host DNA was 1.697 g/cm(3). Equilibrium sedimentation in cesium chloride and thermal denaturation indicated G + C contents of 44% and 39% for the viral and host DNA, respectively.

  19. Insect pest control newsletter. No. 65

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2005-07-01

    The concept of Area-wide Integrated Pest Management (AW-IPM) is defined as IPM applied against an entire pest population within a delimited geographic area. Area-wide intervention strategies require more planning and ecological understanding, longer-term commitment, a minimum infrastructure and a coordinated implementation by farmers and all other stakeholders. The spatial distribution of the pest population has to be considered not only in surrounding cultivated areas, but also in non-cultivated areas. It also involves considering the temporal distribution of the pest to determine the periods when the pest is most susceptible to preventive, rather than remedial, interventions. In 1998 FAO and the Agency sponsored the First International Conference on 'Area-Wide Control of Insect Pests, Integrating the Sterile Insect and Related Nuclear and other Techniques' in Penang, Malaysia. This Conference greatly increased the interest and awareness concerning the AW-IPM approach to insect pest control. Since then, many new technical innovations have been introduced; a better regulatory framework is being developed to encourage the involvement of the private sector, and more FAO and Agency Member States are integrating insect pest control methods on an areawide basis. Over the past months we have been heavily involved in preparing for the Second FAO/IAEA International Conference on 'Area-Wide Control of Insect Pests: Integrating the Sterile Insect and Related Nuclear and Other Techniques', which was held from 9-13 May in Vienna. The response and interest of scientists and governments, as well as the private sector and sponsors were once more very encouraging. The conference took place with the participation of over 300 delegates from 86 countries, nine international organization, and eight exhibitors. It covered the area-wide approach again in a very broad sense, including the development and integration of many non-SIT technologies, as well as genetic research on cytoplasmic

  20. Insect pest control newsletter. No. 65

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2005-07-01

    The concept of Area-wide Integrated Pest Management (AW-IPM) is defined as IPM applied against an entire pest population within a delimited geographic area. Area-wide intervention strategies require more planning and ecological understanding, longer-term commitment, a minimum infrastructure and a coordinated implementation by farmers and all other stakeholders. The spatial distribution of the pest population has to be considered not only in surrounding cultivated areas, but also in non-cultivated areas. It also involves considering the temporal distribution of the pest to determine the periods when the pest is most susceptible to preventive, rather than remedial, interventions. In 1998 FAO and the Agency sponsored the First International Conference on 'Area-Wide Control of Insect Pests, Integrating the Sterile Insect and Related Nuclear and other Techniques' in Penang, Malaysia. This Conference greatly increased the interest and awareness concerning the AW-IPM approach to insect pest control. Since then, many new technical innovations have been introduced; a better regulatory framework is being developed to encourage the involvement of the private sector, and more FAO and Agency Member States are integrating insect pest control methods on an areawide basis. Over the past months we have been heavily involved in preparing for the Second FAO/IAEA International Conference on 'Area-Wide Control of Insect Pests: Integrating the Sterile Insect and Related Nuclear and Other Techniques', which was held from 9-13 May in Vienna. The response and interest of scientists and governments, as well as the private sector and sponsors were once more very encouraging. The conference took place with the participation of over 300 delegates from 86 countries, nine international organization, and eight exhibitors. It covered the area-wide approach again in a very broad sense, including the development and integration of many non-SIT technologies, as well as genetic research on cytoplasmic

  1. Transcriptome analysis in cotton boll weevil (Anthonomus grandis and RNA interference in insect pests.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandre Augusto Pereira Firmino

    Full Text Available Cotton plants are subjected to the attack of several insect pests. In Brazil, the cotton boll weevil, Anthonomus grandis, is the most important cotton pest. The use of insecticidal proteins and gene silencing by interference RNA (RNAi as techniques for insect control are promising strategies, which has been applied in the last few years. For this insect, there are not much available molecular information on databases. Using 454-pyrosequencing methodology, the transcriptome of all developmental stages of the insect pest, A. grandis, was analyzed. The A. grandis transcriptome analysis resulted in more than 500.000 reads and a data set of high quality 20,841 contigs. After sequence assembly and annotation, around 10,600 contigs had at least one BLAST hit against NCBI non-redundant protein database and 65.7% was similar to Tribolium castaneum sequences. A comparison of A. grandis, Drosophila melanogaster and Bombyx mori protein families' data showed higher similarity to dipteran than to lepidopteran sequences. Several contigs of genes encoding proteins involved in RNAi mechanism were found. PAZ Domains sequences extracted from the transcriptome showed high similarity and conservation for the most important functional and structural motifs when compared to PAZ Domains from 5 species. Two SID-like contigs were phylogenetically analyzed and grouped with T. castaneum SID-like proteins. No RdRP gene was found. A contig matching chitin synthase 1 was mined from the transcriptome. dsRNA microinjection of a chitin synthase gene to A. grandis female adults resulted in normal oviposition of unviable eggs and malformed alive larvae that were unable to develop in artificial diet. This is the first study that characterizes the transcriptome of the coleopteran, A. grandis. A new and representative transcriptome database for this insect pest is now available. All data support the state of the art of RNAi mechanism in insects.

  2. Transcriptome analysis in cotton boll weevil (Anthonomus grandis) and RNA interference in insect pests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Firmino, Alexandre Augusto Pereira; Fonseca, Fernando Campos de Assis; de Macedo, Leonardo Lima Pepino; Coelho, Roberta Ramos; Antonino de Souza, José Dijair; Togawa, Roberto Coiti; Silva-Junior, Orzenil Bonfim; Pappas, Georgios Joannis; da Silva, Maria Cristina Mattar; Engler, Gilbert; Grossi-de-Sa, Maria Fatima

    2013-01-01

    Cotton plants are subjected to the attack of several insect pests. In Brazil, the cotton boll weevil, Anthonomus grandis, is the most important cotton pest. The use of insecticidal proteins and gene silencing by interference RNA (RNAi) as techniques for insect control are promising strategies, which has been applied in the last few years. For this insect, there are not much available molecular information on databases. Using 454-pyrosequencing methodology, the transcriptome of all developmental stages of the insect pest, A. grandis, was analyzed. The A. grandis transcriptome analysis resulted in more than 500.000 reads and a data set of high quality 20,841 contigs. After sequence assembly and annotation, around 10,600 contigs had at least one BLAST hit against NCBI non-redundant protein database and 65.7% was similar to Tribolium castaneum sequences. A comparison of A. grandis, Drosophila melanogaster and Bombyx mori protein families' data showed higher similarity to dipteran than to lepidopteran sequences. Several contigs of genes encoding proteins involved in RNAi mechanism were found. PAZ Domains sequences extracted from the transcriptome showed high similarity and conservation for the most important functional and structural motifs when compared to PAZ Domains from 5 species. Two SID-like contigs were phylogenetically analyzed and grouped with T. castaneum SID-like proteins. No RdRP gene was found. A contig matching chitin synthase 1 was mined from the transcriptome. dsRNA microinjection of a chitin synthase gene to A. grandis female adults resulted in normal oviposition of unviable eggs and malformed alive larvae that were unable to develop in artificial diet. This is the first study that characterizes the transcriptome of the coleopteran, A. grandis. A new and representative transcriptome database for this insect pest is now available. All data support the state of the art of RNAi mechanism in insects.

  3. Genetic engineering technology for the improvement of the sterile insect technique. Proceedings of a final research co-ordination meeting

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1998-01-01

    Since the beginning of the joint FAO/IAEA programme on the research and development of insect pest control methodology, emphasis has been placed on the basic and applied aspects of implementing the sterile insect technique (SIT). Special emphasis has always been directed at the assembly of technological progress into workable systems that can be implemented in developing countries. The general intention is to solve problems associated with insect pests that have an adverse impact on production of food and fibre. For several insect species SIT has proven to be a powerful method for control. This includes the New World screwworm fly (Cochliomyia hominivorox), the Mediterranean fruit fly (Ceratitis capitata), the melon fly (Bactrocera cucurbitae), the Queensland fruit fly (Bactrocera tryoni) and one tsetse fly species (Glossina austeni). Improvements of the SIT are possible, especially through the use of molecular techniques. The final report of the Co-ordinated Research Programme on ``Genetic Engineering Technology for the Improvement of the Sterile Insect Technique`` highlights the progress made towards the development of transformation systems for non-drosophilid insects and the research aimed at the identification and engineering of potential target genes or traits. Refs, figs, tabs.

  4. Genetic engineering technology for the improvement of the sterile insect technique. Proceedings of a final research co-ordination meeting

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1998-01-01

    Since the beginning of the joint FAO/IAEA programme on the research and development of insect pest control methodology, emphasis has been placed on the basic and applied aspects of implementing the sterile insect technique (SIT). Special emphasis has always been directed at the assembly of technological progress into workable systems that can be implemented in developing countries. The general intention is to solve problems associated with insect pests that have an adverse impact on production of food and fibre. For several insect species SIT has proven to be a powerful method for control. This includes the New World screwworm fly (Cochliomyia hominivorox), the Mediterranean fruit fly (Ceratitis capitata), the melon fly (Bactrocera cucurbitae), the Queensland fruit fly (Bactrocera tryoni) and one tsetse fly species (Glossina austeni). Improvements of the SIT are possible, especially through the use of molecular techniques. The final report of the Co-ordinated Research Programme on ''Genetic Engineering Technology for the Improvement of the Sterile Insect Technique'' highlights the progress made towards the development of transformation systems for non-drosophilid insects and the research aimed at the identification and engineering of potential target genes or traits

  5. Revealing the microbiota of marketed edible insects through PCR-DGGE, metagenomic sequencing and real-time PCR.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osimani, Andrea; Milanović, Vesna; Garofalo, Cristiana; Cardinali, Federica; Roncolini, Andrea; Sabbatini, Riccardo; De Filippis, Francesca; Ercolini, Danilo; Gabucci, Claudia; Petruzzelli, Annalisa; Tonucci, Franco; Clementi, Francesca; Aquilanti, Lucia

    2018-07-02

    The present study aimed to identify the microbiota present in six species of processed edible insects produced in Thailand and marketed worldwide via the internet, namely, giant water bugs (Belostoma lutarium), black ants (Polyrhachis), winged termites (alates, Termitoidae), rhino beetles (Hyboschema contractum), mole crickets (Gryllotalpidae), and silkworm pupae (Bombyx mori). For each species, two samples of boiled, dried and salted insects were purchased. The microbial DNA was extracted from the insect samples and subjected to polymerase chain reaction-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (PCR-DGGE), high-throughput sequencing and qualitative real-time PCR assays. The microbiota of the analyzed samples were widely characterized by the presence of spore-forming bacteria mainly represented by the genera Bacillus and Clostridium. Moreover, the genera Anaerobacillus, Paenibacillus, Geobacillus, Pseudomonas, Stenotrophomonas, Massilia, Delftia, Lactobacillus, Staphylococcus, Streptococcus, Vagococcus, and Vibrio were also detected. Real-time PCR allowed for ascertainment of the absence of Coxiella burnetii, Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC), and Pseudomonas aeruginosa in all samples. The results of this study confirm the importance of combining different molecular techniques to characterize the biodiversity of complex ecosystems such as edible insects. The presence of potential human pathogens suggests the need for a careful application of good manufacturing practices during insect processing. This study provides further data that will be useful in risk analyses of edible insects as a novel food source. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Diseases in insects produced for food and feed

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Eilenberg, Jørgen; Vlak, J.M.; Nielsen-Leroux, C.

    2015-01-01

    Increased production of insects on a large scale for food and feed will likely lead to many novel challenges, including problems with diseases. We provide an overview of important groups of insect pathogens, which can cause disease in insects produced for food and feed. Main characteristics of each...... pathogen group (viruses, bacteria, fungi, protists and nematodes) are described and illustrated, with a selection of examples from the most commonly produced insect species for food and feed. Honeybee and silkworm are mostly produced for other reasons than as human food, yet we can still use them...... as examples to learn about emergence of new diseases in production insects. Results from a 2014 survey about insect diseases in current insect production systems are presented for the first time. Finally, we give some recommendations for the prevention and control of insect diseases. Key words: disease...

  7. The nutritional value of fourteen species of edible insects in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    hope&shola

    2006-02-02

    Feb 2, 2006 ... in Africa, Asia, and Latin America (Bodenheimer, 1951). Hundreds of ... developed among the cultivators of the forest region. It is .... Proximate analysis (%) of commonly eaten dried insects in south western Nigeria. Insects.

  8. Engineering insect-resistant crops: A review

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    dgeorge

    African Journal of Biotechnology ... Transgenic crops engineered for enhanced levels of resistance to insect ... this background that research work targeting other candidate genes such as ... nisms, and potential deleterious environmental effects. ... The global market value of biotech crops was esti- .... located in repeat 11.

  9. Insects: Little Things That Run the World

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tilley, Luke

    2014-01-01

    Insects are easily the most abundant and diverse group of animals, with over 24,000 species in the UK alone. They can be found in almost every habitat on Earth and are fundamentally important to ecology, conservation, food production, animal and human health, and biodiversity. They are a prominent feature of almost every food web in the UK and…

  10. Insects in IBL-4 pine weevil traps

    Science.gov (United States)

    I. Skrzecz

    2003-01-01

    Pipe traps (IBL-4) are used in Polish coniferous plantations to monitor and control the pine weevil (Hylobius abietis L.). This study was conducted in a one-year old pine plantation established on a reforested clear-cut area in order to evaluate the impact of these traps on non-target insects. Evaluation of the catches indicated that species of

  11. Surface area-volume ratios in insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kühsel, Sara; Brückner, Adrian; Schmelzle, Sebastian; Heethoff, Michael; Blüthgen, Nico

    2017-10-01

    Body mass, volume and surface area are important for many aspects of the physiology and performance of species. Whereas body mass scaling received a lot of attention in the literature, surface areas of animals have not been measured explicitly in this context. We quantified surface area-volume (SA/V) ratios for the first time using 3D surface models based on a structured light scanning method for 126 species of pollinating insects from 4 orders (Diptera, Hymenoptera, Lepidoptera, and Coleoptera). Water loss of 67 species was measured gravimetrically at very dry conditions for 2 h at 15 and 30 °C to demonstrate the applicability of the new 3D surface measurements and relevance for predicting the performance of insects. Quantified SA/V ratios significantly explained the variation in water loss across species, both directly or after accounting for isometric scaling (residuals of the SA/V ∼ mass 2/3 relationship). Small insects with a proportionally larger surface area had the highest water loss rates. Surface scans of insects to quantify allometric SA/V ratios thus provide a promising method to predict physiological responses, improving the potential of body mass isometry alone that assume geometric similarity. © 2016 Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

  12. Natural products from microbes associated with insects

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Beemelmanns, Christine; Guo, Huijuan; Rischer, Maja

    2016-01-01

    Here we review discoveries of secondary metabolites from microbes associated with insects. We mainly focus on natural products, where the ecological role has been at least partially elucidated, and/or the pharmaceutical properties evaluated, and on compounds with unique structural features. We...

  13. Eicosanoid-mediated immunity in insects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eicosanoid is a collective term for oxygenated metabolites of C20 polyunsaturated fatty acids. As seen in mammals, eicosanoids play crucial roles in mediating various physiological processes, including immune responses, in insects. Upon microbial pathogen infection, non-self recognition signals are ...

  14. Measuring Asymmetry in Insect-Plant Networks

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cruz, Claudia P T [Programa de Pos-Graduacao em Fisica, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte, UFRN - Campus Universitario, Lagoa Nova, CEP 59078 972, Natal, RN (Brazil); De Almeida, Adriana M [Departamento de Botanica, Ecologia e Zoologia, Centro de Biociencias, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte, UFRN - Campus Universitario, Lagoa Nova, CEP 59078 972, Natal, RN (Brazil); Corso, Gilberto, E-mail: claudia@dfte.ufrn.br, E-mail: adrianam@ufrn.br, E-mail: corso@cb.ufrn.br [Departamento de Biofisica e Farmacologia, Centro de Biociencias, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte, UFRN - Campus Universitario, Lagoa Nova, CEP 59078 972, Natal, RN (Brazil)

    2011-03-01

    In this work we focus on interaction networks between insects and plants and in the characterization of insect plant asymmetry, an important issue in coevolution and evolutionary biology. We analyze in particular the asymmetry in the interaction matrix of animals (herbivorous insects) and plants (food resource for the insects). Instead of driving our attention to the interaction matrix itself we derive two networks associated to the bipartite network: the animal network, D{sub 1}, and the plant network, D{sub 2}. These networks are constructed according to the following recipe: two animal species are linked once if they interact with the same plant. In a similar way, in the plant network, two plants are linked if they interact with the same animal. To explore the asymmetry between D{sub 2} and D{sub 1} we test for a set of 23 networks from the ecologic literature networks: the difference in size, {Delta}L, clustering coefficient difference, {Delta}C, and mean connectivity difference, {Delta}. We used a nonparametric statistical test to check the differences in {Delta}L, {Delta}C and {Delta}. Our results indicate that {Delta}L and {Delta} show a significative asymmetry.

  15. Pathogenesis induced by (recombinant) baculoviruses in insects

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Flipsen, H.

    1995-01-01

    Infection of insect larvae by a baculovirus leads to cessation of feeding and finally to the death of the larva. Under optimal conditions this process may take as little as five days during which the virus multiplies approximately a billion times and transforms 30% of the larval weight into

  16. A new family of insect tyramine receptors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cazzamali, Giuseppe; Klærke, Dan Arne; Grimmelikhuijzen, Cornelis J P

    2005-01-01

    in the genomic databases from the malaria mosquito Anopheles gambiae and the honeybee Apis mellifera. These four tyramine or tyramine-like receptors constitute a new receptor family that is phylogenetically distinct from the previously identified insect octopamine/tyramine receptors. The Drosophila tyramine...

  17. Electronic nose in edible insects area

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Adámek

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Edible insect is appraised by many cultures as delicious and nutritionally beneficial food. In western countries this commodity is not fully appreciated, and the worries about edible insect food safety prevail. Electronic noses can become a simple and cheap way of securing the health safety of food, and they can also become a tool for evaluating the quality of certain commodities. This research is a pilot project of using an electronic nose in edible insect culinary treatment, and this manuscript describes the phases of edible insect culinary treatment and methods of distinguishing mealworm (Tenebrio molitor and giant mealworm (Zophobas morio using simple electronic nose. These species were measured in the live stage, after killing with boiling water, after drying and after inserting into the chocolate.The sensing device was based on the Arduino Mega platform with the ability to store the recorded data on the SD memory card, and with the possibility to communicate via internet. Data analysis shows that even a simple, cheap and portable electronic nose can distinguish between the different steps of culinary treatment (native samples, dried samples, samples enriched with chocolate for cooking and selected species. Another benefit of the electronic nose could be its future introduction into the control mechanisms of food security systems (e.g. HACCP.

  18. Radioisotope labelling of several major insect pest

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sutrisno, Singgih

    1981-01-01

    Radioisotope uptake by insects could take place through various parts i.e. mouth, cuticula, intersegmental, secretion and excretion organs. Usually insects are labelled internally by feeding them on an artificial diet containing radioisotope solution. Labelling of several insect pests of cabbage (Crocidolomia binotalis) Zell and Plutella maculipennis Curt and rice (Chilo suppressalis Walker) by dipping of the pupae in 32 P solution showed a promising result. Pupae of Crocidolomia binotalis Zell dipped in 3 ml solution of 32 P with specific activities of 1, 3, 5 and 7 μCi/ml had developed labelled adults of sufficiently high radioactivity levels for ecological studies. Similar results were also obtained with Plutella maculipennis Curt and Chilo suppressalis Walker with doses of 1, 3, 5, 7 and 9 μCi/ml 32 P solution. The best doses for radioisotope labelling by dipping of the insects Crocidolomia binotalis Zell, Plutella maculipennis Curt, and Chilo suppressalis Walker were 1, 9, and 7 μCi/ml respectivelly. (author)

  19. Invasive pests—insects and diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donald A. Duerr; Paul A. Mistretta

    2013-01-01

    Key FindingsNonnative pest species have increasing impacts in the South regardless of climate change, patterns of land ownership, or changes in the composition of vegetation.“New” nonnative invasive insects and diseases will have serious impacts on southern forests over the next 50 years. Some species such as emerald ash borer...

  20. Insect Pests of Field Crops. MP-28.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burkhardt, Chris C.

    This document addresses the principles of field crop insect control through biological, mechanical, and chemical processes. Identification, life history, damage, pesticides, pesticide use and environmental considerations are presented for the major pests of corn, alfalfa, beans, small grains, sugar beets, and potatoes. Each section is accompanied…

  1. STATUS OF INSECT DIVERSITY CONSERVATION IN NIGERIA

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Timothy Ademakinwa

    With a rapid surge in human population, there has been concomitant increase in anthropogenic threats to biodiversity, especially for ecologically-important groups such as insects. With the loss of about 79% of its forest cover, Nigeria ranked as the nation with the highest rate of forest loss in 2005. How these and other.

  2. Lipophorin Receptor: The Insect Lipoprotein Receptor

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    IAS Admin

    Director of ... function of the Lp is to deliver lipids throughout the insect body for metabolism ... Lipid is used as a major energy source for development as well as other metabolic .... LpR4 receptor variant was expressed exclusively in the brain and.

  3. Democratizing evolutionary biology, lessons from insects

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dunn, Robert Roberdeau; Beasley, DeAnna E.

    2016-01-01

    The engagement of the public in the scientific process is an old practice. Yet with recent advances in technology, the role of the citizen scientist in studying evolutionary processes has increased. Insects provide ideal models for understanding these evolutionary processes at large scales. This ...

  4. Insect pest management in stored grain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stored grain is vulnerable to attach by a variety of insect pests, that can generally be classified as external or internal feeders. Infestations primarily occur after grain is stored, though there is some evidence that infestations can occur in the field right before harvest. There are a variety of...

  5. Some insects affecting Penstemon seed production

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robert Hammon; Melissa Franklin

    2012-01-01

    Beardtongue (Penstemon Schmidel [Scrophulariaceae)) seeds are often produced without apparent damage from pests, but several species of native insects can adversely impact seed production fields. Tarnished plant bug (Lygus lineolaris (Palisot)) and western plant bug (Lygus hesperus Knight [Hemiptera: Miridae]), penstemon weevil (Hesperobaris sp. Casey [Coleoptera:...

  6. Ecology of insects in California chaparral

    Science.gov (United States)

    Don C. Force

    1990-01-01

    Studies stimulated by the International Biological Program showed total insect faunal biomass and diversity to be greatest in the spring of the year, which matches increased plant growth and flowering at this time. Ground-inhabiting beetle studies indicated the family Tenebrionidae to be overwhelmingly dominant in biomass, but the family Staphylinidae to be richest in...

  7. Book review: Insect morphology and phylogeny

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susanne Randolf

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Beutel RG, Friedrich F, Ge S-Q, Yang X-K (2014 Insect Morphology and Phylogeny: A textbook for students of entomology. De Gruyter, Berlin/Boston, 516 pp., softcover. ISBN 978-3-11-026263-6.

  8. Short notes and reviews Insect history

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schram, Frederick R.

    2003-01-01

    Review of: History of Insects, edited by A. P. Rasnitsyn and D. L. J. Quicke. Kluwer Academic Publ., Dordrecht, Netherlands, 2002, 517 pp., ISBN 14 0200 026 X In the winter of 1977, I visited the Paleontological Institute of the Academy of Sciences in Moscow. I wanted to study the type specimens of

  9. Insect biodiversity of boreal peat bogs

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Spitzer, Karel; Danks, H. V.

    2006-01-01

    Roč. 51, - (2006), s. 137-161 ISSN 0066-4170 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA206/97/0077; GA AV ČR(CZ) IBS5007015 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50070508 Keywords : peatlands * tyrphobiontic insects * conservation Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 8.714, year: 2006

  10. Bug City: House and Backyard Insects [Videotape].

    Science.gov (United States)

    1998

    "Bug City" is a video series created to help children learn about insects and other small critters. All aspects of bug life are touched upon including body structure, food, habitat, life cycle, mating habits, camouflage, mutualism (symbiosis), adaptations, social behavior, and more. Each program features dramatic microscopic photography,…

  11. Insect transgenesis: current applications and future prospects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fraser, Malcolm J

    2012-01-01

    The ability to manipulate the genomes of many insects has become a practical reality over the past 15 years. This has been led by the identification of several useful transposon vector systems that have allowed the identification and development of generalized, species-specific, and tissue-specific promoter systems for controlled expression of gene products upon introduction into insect genomes. Armed with these capabilities, researchers have made significant strides in both fundamental and applied transgenics in key model systems such as Bombyx mori, Tribolium casteneum, Aedes aegypti, and Anopheles stephensi. Limitations of transposon systems were identified, and alternative tools were developed, thus significantly increasing the potential for applied transgenics for control of both agricultural and medical insect pests. The next 10 years promise to be an exciting time of transitioning from the laboratory to the field, from basic research to applied control, during which the full potential of gene manipulation in insect systems will ultimately be realized. Copyright © 2012 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.

  12. The sterile insect technique [videorecording]: An environment-friendly method of insect pest suppression and eradication

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2003-01-01

    Using graphic displays and clips of actual laboratory and field activities related to the sterile insect technique (SIT), the video covers various topics on the principles and applications of this technique

  13. Recombinant Protein Production and Insect Cell Culture and Process

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spaulding, Glenn F. (Inventor); Goodwin, Thomas J. (Inventor); OConnor, Kim C. (Inventor); Francis, Karen M. (Inventor); Andrews, Angela D. (Inventor); Prewett, Tracey L. (Inventor)

    1997-01-01

    A process has been developed for recombinant production of selected polypeptides using transformed insect cells cultured in a horizontally rotating culture vessel modulated to create low shear conditions. A metabolically transformed insect cell line is produced using the culture procedure regardless of genetic transformation. The recombinant polypeptide can be produced by an alternative process using virtually infected or stably transformed insect cells containing a gene encoding the described polypeptide. The insect cells can also be a host for viral production.

  14. Proteomic Analysis of Interaction between a Plant Virus and Its Vector Insect Reveals New Functions of Hemipteran Cuticular Protein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Wenwen; Gray, Stewart; Huo, Yan; Li, Li; Wei, Taiyun; Wang, Xifeng

    2015-08-01

    Numerous viruses can be transmitted by their corresponding vector insects; however, the molecular mechanisms enabling virus transmission by vector insects have been poorly understood, especially the identity of vector components interacting with the virus. Here, we used the yeast two-hybrid system to study proteomic interactions of a plant virus (Rice stripe virus, RSV, genus Tenuivirus) with its vector insect, small brown planthopper (Laodelphax striatellus). Sixty-six proteins of L. striatellus that interacted with the nucleocapsid protein (pc3) of RSV were identified. A virus-insect interaction network, constructed for pc3 and 29 protein homologs of Drosophila melanogaster, suggested that nine proteins might directly interact with pc3. Of the 66 proteins, five (atlasin, a novel cuticular protein, jagunal, NAC domain protein, and vitellogenin) were most likely to be involved in viral movement, replication, and transovarial transmission. This work also provides evidence that the novel cuticular protein, CPR1, from L. striatellus is essential for RSV transmission by its vector insect. CPR1 binds the nucleocapsid protein (pc3) of RSV both in vivo and in vitro and colocalizes with RSV in the hemocytes of L. striatellus. Knockdown of CPR1 transcription using RNA interference resulted in a decrease in the concentration of RSV in the hemolymph, salivary glands and in viral transmission efficiency. These data suggest that CPR1 binds RSV in the insect and stabilizes the viral concentration in the hemolymph, perhaps to protect the virus or to help move the virus to the salivary tissues. Our studies provide direct experimental evidence that viruses can use existing vector proteins to aid their survival in the hemolymph. Identifying these putative vector molecules should lead to a better understanding of the interactions between viruses and vector insects. © 2015 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  15. Evaluation of hazardous chemicals in edible insects and insect-based food intended for human consumption

    OpenAIRE

    Poma, Giulia; Cuykx, Matthias; Amato, Elvio; Calaprice, Chiara; Focant, Jean Francois; Covaci, Adrian

    2017-01-01

    Abstract: Due to the rapid increase in world population, the waste of food and resources, and non-sustainable food production practices, the use of alternative food sources is currently strongly promoted. In this perspective, insects may represent a valuable alternative to main animal food sources due to their nutritional value and sustainable production. However, edible insects may be perceived as an unappealing food source and are indeed rarely consumed in developed countries. The food safe...

  16. Evaluation of hazardous chemicals in edible insects and insect-based food intended for human consumption.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poma, Giulia; Cuykx, Matthias; Amato, Elvio; Calaprice, Chiara; Focant, Jean Francois; Covaci, Adrian

    2017-02-01

    Due to the rapid increase in world population, the waste of food and resources, and non-sustainable food production practices, the use of alternative food sources is currently strongly promoted. In this perspective, insects may represent a valuable alternative to main animal food sources due to their nutritional value and sustainable production. However, edible insects may be perceived as an unappealing food source and are indeed rarely consumed in developed countries. The food safety of edible insects can thus contribute to the process of acceptance of insects as an alternative food source, changing the perception of developed countries regarding entomophagy. In the present study, the levels of organic contaminants (i.e. flame retardants, PCBs, DDT, dioxin compounds, pesticides) and metals (As, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Ni, Pb, Sn, Zn) were investigated in composite samples of several species of edible insects (greater wax moth, migratory locust, mealworm beetle, buffalo worm) and four insect-based food items currently commercialized in Belgium. The organic chemical mass fractions were relatively low (PCBs: 27-2065 pg/g ww; OCPs: 46-368 pg/g ww; BFRs: up to 36 pg/g ww; PFRs 783-23800 pg/g ww; dioxin compounds: up to 0.25 pg WHO-TEQ/g ww) and were generally lower than those measured in common animal products. The untargeted screening analysis revealed the presence of vinyltoluene, tributylphosphate (present in 75% of the samples), and pirimiphos-methyl (identified in 50% of the samples). The levels of Cu and Zn in insects were similar to those measured in meat and fish in other studies, whereas As, Co, Cr, Pb, Sn levels were relatively low in all samples (consume these insect species with no additional hazards in comparison to the more commonly consumed animal products. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Social insects: from selfish genes to self organisation and beyond.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boomsma, Jacobus J; Franks, Nigel R

    2006-06-01

    Selfish gene and self-organisation approaches have revolutionised the study of social insects and have provided unparalleled insights into the highly sophisticated nature of insect social evolution. Here, we briefly review the core programs and interfaces with communication and recognition studies that characterise these fields today, and offer an interdisciplinary future perspective for the study of social insect evolutionary biology.

  18. The insect cookbook : food for a sustainable planet

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huis, van A.; Gurp, van H.; Dicke, M.

    2014-01-01

    In The Insect Cookbook, two entomologists and a chef make the case for insects as a sustainable source of protein for humans and a necessary part of our future diet. They provide consumers and chefs with the essential facts about insects for culinary use, with recipes simple enough to make at home

  19. Viruses of insects reared for food and feed

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Maciel-Vergara, Gabriela; Ros, Vera I.D.

    2017-01-01

    The use of insects as food for humans or as feed for animals is an alternative for the increasing high demand for meat and has various environmental and social advantages over the traditional intensive production of livestock. Mass rearing of insects, under insect farming conditions or even in

  20. Coconut leaf bioactivity toward generalist maize insect pests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tropical plants are often more resistant to insects than temperate plants due to evolution of robust defenses to cope with a more constant insect threat. Coconut (Cocos nucifera L.) has very few chewing leaf feeding insect pests and was tested against two omnivorous leaf feeding caterpillar species,...

  1. Innovative Strategies for Control of Coffee Insect Pests in Tanzania ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Coffee insect pests are one of the major factors which affect coffee production and quality. globally, coffee insect pests are estimated to cause losses of about 13%. However in Africa, yield losses can be much higher, particularly where Arabica and Robusta coffee are grown for a long time. In Tanzania the major insect pests ...

  2. Nano-particles - A recent approach to insect pest control

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    USER

    2010-06-14

    Jun 14, 2010 ... Available online at http://www.academicjournals.org/AJB ... It is now known that many insects possess ferromagnetic materials in the head ... nanoparticles in insects and their potential for use in insect pest management. ... often synthesized using chemical methods. ..... opacus termite: FMR characterization.

  3. The Native Hawaiian Insect Microbiome Initiative: A Critical Perspective for Hawaiian Insect Evolution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kirsten E. Poff

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Insects associate with a diversity of microbes that can shape host ecology and diversity by providing essential biological and adaptive services. For most insect groups, the evolutionary implications of host–microbe interactions remain poorly understood. Geographically discrete areas with high biodiversity offer powerful, simplified model systems to better understand insect–microbe interactions. Hawaii boasts a diverse endemic insect fauna (~6000 species characterized by spectacular adaptive radiations. Despite this, little is known about the role of bacteria in shaping this diversity. To address this knowledge gap, we inaugurate the Native Hawaiian Insect Microbiome Initiative (NHIMI. The NHIMI is an effort intended to develop a framework for informing evolutionary and biological studies in Hawaii. To initiate this effort, we have sequenced the bacterial microbiomes of thirteen species representing iconic, endemic Hawaiian insect groups. Our results show that native Hawaiian insects associate with a diversity of bacteria that exhibit a wide phylogenetic breadth. Several groups show predictable associations with obligate microbes that permit diet specialization. Others exhibit unique ecological transitions that are correlated with shifts in their microbiomes (e.g., transition to carrion feeding from plant-feeding in Nysius wekiuicola. Finally, some groups, such as the Hawaiian Drosophila, have relatively diverse microbiomes with a conserved core of bacterial taxa across multiple species and islands.

  4. Ubiquitous water-soluble molecules in aquatic plant exudates determine specific insect attraction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sérandour, Julien; Reynaud, Stéphane; Willison, John; Patouraux, Joëlle; Gaude, Thierry; Ravanel, Patrick; Lempérière, Guy; Raveton, Muriel

    2008-10-08

    Plants produce semio-chemicals that directly influence insect attraction and/or repulsion. Generally, this attraction is closely associated with herbivory and has been studied mainly under atmospheric conditions. On the other hand, the relationship between aquatic plants and insects has been little studied. To determine whether the roots of aquatic macrophytes release attractive chemical mixtures into the water, we studied the behaviour of mosquito larvae using olfactory experiments with root exudates. After testing the attraction on Culex and Aedes mosquito larvae, we chose to work with Coquillettidia species, which have a complex behaviour in nature and need to be attached to plant roots in order to obtain oxygen. This relationship is non-destructive and can be described as commensal behaviour. Commonly found compounds seemed to be involved in insect attraction since root exudates from different plants were all attractive. Moreover, chemical analysis allowed us to identify a certain number of commonly found, highly water-soluble, low-molecular-weight compounds, several of which (glycerol, uracil, thymine, uridine, thymidine) were able to induce attraction when tested individually but at concentrations substantially higher than those found in nature. However, our principal findings demonstrated that these compounds appeared to act synergistically, since a mixture of these five compounds attracted larvae at natural concentrations (0.7 nM glycerol, insect relationships in aquatic eco-systems.

  5. Evidence against a germ plasm in the milkweed bug Oncopeltus fasciatus, a hemimetabolous insect

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ben Ewen-Campen

    2013-04-01

    Primordial germ cell (PGC formation in holometabolous insects like Drosophila melanogaster relies on maternally synthesised germ cell determinants that are asymmetrically localised to the oocyte posterior cortex. Embryonic nuclei that inherit this “germ plasm” acquire PGC fate. In contrast, historical studies of basally branching insects (Hemimetabola suggest that a maternal requirement for germ line genes in PGC specification may be a derived character confined principally to Holometabola. However, there have been remarkably few investigations of germ line gene expression and function in hemimetabolous insects. Here we characterise PGC formation in the milkweed bug Oncopeltus fasciatus, a member of the sister group to Holometabola, thus providing an important evolutionary comparison to members of this clade. We examine the transcript distribution of orthologues of 19 Drosophila germ cell and/or germ plasm marker genes, and show that none of them localise asymmetrically within Oncopeltus oocytes or early embryos. Using multiple molecular and cytological criteria, we provide evidence that PGCs form after cellularisation at the site of gastrulation. Functional studies of vasa and tudor reveal that these genes are not required for germ cell formation, but that vasa is required in adult males for spermatogenesis. Taken together, our results provide evidence that Oncopeltus germ cells may form in the absence of germ plasm, consistent with the hypothesis that germ plasm is a derived strategy of germ cell specification in insects.

  6. Evidence against a germ plasm in the milkweed bug Oncopeltus fasciatus, a hemimetabolous insect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ewen-Campen, Ben; Jones, Tamsin E M; Extavour, Cassandra G

    2013-06-15

    Primordial germ cell (PGC) formation in holometabolous insects like Drosophila melanogaster relies on maternally synthesised germ cell determinants that are asymmetrically localised to the oocyte posterior cortex. Embryonic nuclei that inherit this "germ plasm" acquire PGC fate. In contrast, historical studies of basally branching insects (Hemimetabola) suggest that a maternal requirement for germ line genes in PGC specification may be a derived character confined principally to Holometabola. However, there have been remarkably few investigations of germ line gene expression and function in hemimetabolous insects. Here we characterise PGC formation in the milkweed bug Oncopeltus fasciatus, a member of the sister group to Holometabola, thus providing an important evolutionary comparison to members of this clade. We examine the transcript distribution of orthologues of 19 Drosophila germ cell and/or germ plasm marker genes, and show that none of them localise asymmetrically within Oncopeltus oocytes or early embryos. Using multiple molecular and cytological criteria, we provide evidence that PGCs form after cellularisation at the site of gastrulation. Functional studies of vasa and tudor reveal that these genes are not required for germ cell formation, but that vasa is required in adult males for spermatogenesis. Taken together, our results provide evidence that Oncopeltus germ cells may form in the absence of germ plasm, consistent with the hypothesis that germ plasm is a derived strategy of germ cell specification in insects.

  7. Development of transgenic wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) expressing avidin gene conferring resistance to stored product insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abouseadaa, Heba H; Osman, Gamal H; Ramadan, Ahmed M; Hassanein, Sameh E; Abdelsattar, Mohamed T; Morsy, Yasser B; Alameldin, Hussien F; El-Ghareeb, Doaa K; Nour-Eldin, Hanan A; Salem, Reda; Gad, Adel A; Elkhodary, Soheir E; Shehata, Maher M; Mahfouz, Hala M; Eissa, Hala F; Bahieldin, Ahmed

    2015-07-22

    Wheat is considered the most important cereal crop all over the world. The wheat weevil Sitophilus granarius is a serious insect pests in much of the wheat growing area worldwide and is responsible for significant loss of yield. Avidin proteins has been proposed to function as plant defense agents against insect pests. A synthetic avidin gene was introduced into spring wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) cv. Giza 168 using a biolistic bombardment protocol. The presence and expression of the transgene in six selected T0 transgenic wheat lines were confirmed at the molecular level. Accumulation of avidin protein was detected in transgenic plants compared to non-transgenic plants. Avidin transgene was stably integrated, transcribed and translated as indicated by Southern blot, ELISA, and dot blot analyses, with a high level of expression in transgenic wheat seeds. However, no expression was detected in untransformed wheat seeds. Functional integrity of avidin was confirmed by insect bioassay. The results of bioassay using transgenic wheat plants challenged with wheat weevil revealed 100 % mortality of the insects reared on transgenic plants after 21 days. Transgenic wheat plants had improved resistance to Sitophilus granarius.

  8. Horizontal transmission of the insect symbiont Rickettsia is plant-mediated

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caspi-Fluger, Ayelet; Inbar, Moshe; Mozes-Daube, Netta; Katzir, Nurit; Portnoy, Vitaly; Belausov, Eduard; Hunter, Martha S.; Zchori-Fein, Einat

    2012-01-01

    Bacteria in the genus Rickettsia, best known as vertebrate pathogens vectored by blood-feeding arthropods, can also be found in phytophagous insects. The presence of closely related bacterial symbionts in evolutionarily distant arthropod hosts presupposes a means of horizontal transmission, but no mechanism for this transmission has been described. Using a combination of experiments with live insects, molecular analyses and microscopy, we found that Rickettsia were transferred from an insect host (the whitefly Bemisia tabaci) to a plant, moved inside the phloem, and could be acquired by other whiteflies. In one experiment, Rickettsia was transferred from the whitefly host to leaves of cotton, basil and black nightshade, where the bacteria were restricted to the phloem cells of the plant. In another experiment, Rickettsia-free adult whiteflies, physically segregated but sharing a cotton leaf with Rickettsia-plus individuals, acquired the Rickettsia at a high rate. Plants can serve as a reservoir for horizontal transmission of Rickettsia, a mechanism which may explain the occurrence of phylogenetically similar symbionts among unrelated phytophagous insect species. This plant-mediated transmission route may also exist in other insect–symbiont systems and, since symbionts may play a critical role in the ecology and evolution of their hosts, serve as an immediate and powerful tool for accelerated evolution. PMID:22113034

  9. System of forest insect pheromone communication: stability of «information» molecules to environmental factors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. G. Soukhovolsky

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Features of external environmental factors (such as electromagnetic radiation in certain spectral bands influencing pheromone molecules, which are carriers of information for forest insects in the search of the opposite sex, were examined. Stability of pheromone molecules for external influences has been studied for siberian moth Dendrolimus superans sibiricus Tschetv., pine moth Dendrilimus pini L., gypsy moth Lymantria dispar L., for xylophages Ips typographus L., Monochamus urussovi Fish. and Monochamus galloprovincialis Oliv. Properties of pheromone molecules were evaluated by calculations using quantum-chemical method B3LYP. Existing methods of quantum-chemical calculations are useful for analyzing the properties of quite small and uncomplicated molecules of forest insect pheromones. The calculations showed that the molecules of insect pheromones are able to absorb light in the ultraviolet range and move into an excited state. The values of dipole moments, the wavelengths of the absorption, atomic and molecular electronic properties of pheromones in the ground and excited states were calculated. The calculations showed that for the reaction of pheromones with oxygen an energy barrier is somewhat higher than for reactions of pheromones with water vapor. The worst reaction of pheromones with water molecules likely to pheromones such molecules whose dipole moment is comparable to the dipole moment of water. Quantum-chemical characteristics of the pheromone molecules can be linked to specific behavior of the insects.

  10. Photorhabdus luminescens genes induced upon insect infection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jung Kirsten

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Photorhabdus luminescens is a Gram-negative luminescent enterobacterium and a symbiote to soil nematodes belonging to the species Heterorhabditis bacteriophora. P.luminescens is simultaneously highly pathogenic to insects. This bacterium exhibits a complex life cycle, including one symbiotic stage characterized by colonization of the upper nematode gut, and a pathogenic stage, characterized by release from the nematode into the hemocoel of insect larvae, resulting in rapid insect death caused by bacterial toxins. P. luminescens appears to sense and adapt to the novel host environment upon changing hosts, which facilitates the production of factors involved in survival within the host, host-killing, and -exploitation. Results A differential fluorescence induction (DFI approach was applied to identify genes that are up-regulated in the bacterium after infection of the insect host Galleria mellonella. For this purpose, a P. luminescens promoter-trap library utilizing the mCherry fluorophore as a reporter was constructed, and approximately 13,000 clones were screened for fluorescence induction in the presence of a G. mellonella larvae homogenate. Since P. luminescens has a variety of regulators that potentially sense chemical molecules, like hormones, the screen for up-regulated genes or operons was performed in vitro, excluding physicochemical signals like oxygen, temperature or osmolarity as variables. Clones (18 were obtained exhibiting at least 2.5-fold induced fluorescence and regarded as specific responders to insect homogenate. In combination with a bioinformatics approach, sequence motifs were identified in these DNA-fragments that are similar to 29 different promoters within the P. luminescens genome. By cloning each of the predicted promoters upstream of the reporter gene, induction was verified for 27 promoters in vitro, and for 24 promoters in viable G. mellonella larvae. Among the validated promoters are some known

  11. External Insect Morphology: A Negative Factor in Attitudes toward Insects and Likelihood of Incorporation in Future Science Education Settings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wagler, Ron; Wagler, Amy

    2012-01-01

    This study investigated if the external morphology of an insect had a negative effect on United States (US) preservice elementary teacher's attitudes toward insects and beliefs concerning the likelihood of incorporating insects into future science education settings. 270 US kindergarten through sixth grade preservice elementary teachers…

  12. Australian Consumers' Awareness and Acceptance of Insects as Food.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilkinson, Kerry; Muhlhausler, Beverly; Motley, Crystal; Crump, Anna; Bray, Heather; Ankeny, Rachel

    2018-04-19

    Insects have long been consumed as part of the diets of many Asian, African, and South American cultures. However, despite international agencies such as the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations advocating the nutritional, environmental, and economic benefits of entomophagy, attitudinal barriers persist in Western societies. In Australia, the indigenous ‘bush tucker’ diet comprising witchetty grubs, honey ants, and Bogong moths is quite well known; however, in most Australian locales, the consumption of insects tends to occur only as a novelty. Therefore, this study aimed to investigate the awareness and acceptance of insects as food. An online survey of 820 consumers found that 68% of participants had heard of entomophagy, but only 21% had previously eaten insects; witchetty grubs, ants, grasshoppers, and crickets were the most commonly tasted insects. Taste, appearance, safety, and quality were identified as the factors that were most likely to influence consumer willingness to try eating insects, but consumer attitudes towards entomophagy were underpinned by both food neophobia (i.e., reluctance to eat new or novel foods) and prior consumption of insects. Neophobic consumers were far less accepting of entomophagy than neophilic consumers, while consumers who had previously eaten insects were most accepting of insects as food. Incorporating insects into familiar products (e.g., biscuits) or cooked meals also improved their appeal. Collectively, these findings can be used by the food industry to devise production and/or marketing strategies that overcome barriers to insect consumption in Australia.

  13. Australian Consumers’ Awareness and Acceptance of Insects as Food

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kerry Wilkinson

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Insects have long been consumed as part of the diets of many Asian, African, and South American cultures. However, despite international agencies such as the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations advocating the nutritional, environmental, and economic benefits of entomophagy, attitudinal barriers persist in Western societies. In Australia, the indigenous ‘bush tucker’ diet comprising witchetty grubs, honey ants, and Bogong moths is quite well known; however, in most Australian locales, the consumption of insects tends to occur only as a novelty. Therefore, this study aimed to investigate the awareness and acceptance of insects as food. An online survey of 820 consumers found that 68% of participants had heard of entomophagy, but only 21% had previously eaten insects; witchetty grubs, ants, grasshoppers, and crickets were the most commonly tasted insects. Taste, appearance, safety, and quality were identified as the factors that were most likely to influence consumer willingness to try eating insects, but consumer attitudes towards entomophagy were underpinned by both food neophobia (i.e., reluctance to eat new or novel foods and prior consumption of insects. Neophobic consumers were far less accepting of entomophagy than neophilic consumers, while consumers who had previously eaten insects were most accepting of insects as food. Incorporating insects into familiar products (e.g., biscuits or cooked meals also improved their appeal. Collectively, these findings can be used by the food industry to devise production and/or marketing strategies that overcome barriers to insect consumption in Australia.

  14. Emerging strategies for RNA interference (RNAi) applications in insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nandety, Raja Sekhar; Kuo, Yen-Wen; Nouri, Shahideh; Falk, Bryce W

    2015-01-01

    RNA interference (RNAi) in insects is a gene regulatory process that also plays a vital role in the maintenance and in the regulation of host defenses against invading viruses. Small RNAs determine the specificity of the RNAi through precise recognition of their targets. These small RNAs in insects comprise small interfering RNAs (siRNAs), micro RNAs (miRNAs) and Piwi interacting RNAs (piRNAs) of various lengths. In this review, we have explored different forms of the RNAi inducers that are presently in use, and their applications for an effective and efficient fundamental and practical RNAi research with insects. Further, we reviewed trends in next generation sequencing (NGS) technologies and their importance for insect RNAi, including the identification of novel insect targets as well as insect viruses. Here we also describe a rapidly emerging trend of using plant viruses to deliver the RNAi inducer molecules into insects for an efficient RNAi response.

  15. Ionizing radiation for insect control in grain and grain products

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tilton, E.W.; Brower, J.H.

    1987-01-01

    A technical review summarizes and discusses information on various aspects of the use of ionizing radiation for the control of insect infestation in grains and grain products. Topics include: the effects of ionizing radiation on insects infesting stored-grain products; the 2 main types of irradiators (electron accelerators; radioisotopes (e.g.: Co-60; Cs-137); dosimetry systems and methodology; variations in radiation resistance by stored-product pests; the proper selection of radiation dose; the effects of combining various treatments (temperature, infrared/microwave radiation, hypoxia, chemicals) with ionizing radiation; sublethal radiation for controlling bulk grain insects; the feeding capacity of irradiated insects; the susceptibility of insecticide-resistant insects to ionizing radiation; and the possible resistance of insects to ionizing radiation. Practical aspects of removing insects from irradiated grain also are discussed

  16. Bugs, butterflies, and spiders: children's understandings about insects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shepardson, Daniel P.

    2002-06-01

    This article explores elementary children's ideas about insects. The study involved 20 children from each grade level, kindergarten through fifth-grade, for a total of 120 children. The data collection procedure was designed to investigate what an insect means to children, through the use of three different tasks: draw and explain, interview about instances, and the formulation of a general rule. Considering children's responses to the three tasks, I found that their ideas about insects reflect understandings based on physical characteristics of size and shape, arthropod characteristics, insect characteristics, human-insect interactions, life habits of insects, feeding habits of insects, and means of locomotion. Children's understandings are juxtaposed to that of a scientific perspective, elucidating implications for curriculum development and instructional practice.

  17. Natural Variation in Resistance to Virus Infection in Dipteran Insects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William H. Palmer

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available The power and ease of Drosophila genetics and the medical relevance of mosquito-transmitted viruses have made dipterans important model organisms in antiviral immunology. Studies of virus–host interactions at the molecular and population levels have illuminated determinants of resistance to virus infection. Here, we review the sources and nature of variation in antiviral immunity and virus susceptibility in model dipteran insects, specifically the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster and vector mosquitoes of the genera Aedes and Culex. We first discuss antiviral immune mechanisms and describe the virus-specificity of these responses. In the following sections, we review genetic and microbiota-dependent variation in antiviral immunity. In the final sections, we explore less well-studied sources of variation, including abiotic factors, sexual dimorphism, infection history, and endogenous viral elements. We borrow from work on other pathogen types and non-dipteran species when it parallels or complements studies in dipterans. Understanding natural variation in virus–host interactions may lead to the identification of novel restriction factors and immune mechanisms and shed light on the molecular determinants of vector competence.

  18. Interactions between parasites and insects vectors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hilary Hurd

    1994-01-01

    Full Text Available This review stresses the importance of studies that will provide a basic understanding of the pathology of parasite-infected vector insects. This knowledge should be a vital component of the very focussed initiatives currently being funded in the areas of vector control. Vector fecundity reduction is discussed as an example of such pathology. Underlying mechanisms are being investigated in a model system, Hymenolepis diminuta-infected Tenebrio molitor and in Onchocerca-infected blackflies and Plasmodium-infected Anopheles stephensi. In all cases, host vitellogenesis is disrupted by the parasite and, in the tapeworm/beetle model, interaction between the parasite and the endocrine control of the insect's reproductive physiology has been demonstrated.

  19. Detection methods for irradiated mites and insects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ignatowicz, S.

    1999-01-01

    Results of the study on the following tests for separation of irradiated pests from untreated ones are reported: (a) test for identification of irradiated mites (Acaridae) based on lack of fecundity of treated females; (b) test for identification of irradiated beetles based on their locomotor activity; (c) test for identification of irradiated pests based on electron spin resonance (ESR) signal derived from treated insects; (d) test for identification of irradiated pests based on changes in the midgut induced by gamma radiation; and (e) test for identification of irradiated pests based on the alterations in total proteins of treated adults. Of these detection methods, only the test based on the pathological changes induced by irradiation in the insect midgut may identify consistently either irradiated larvae or adults. This test is simple and convenient when a rapid processing technique for dehydrating and embedding the midgut is used. (author)

  20. Remote radio control of insect flight

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hirotaka Sato

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available We demonstrated the remote control of insects in free flight via an implantable radio-equipped miniature neural stimulating system. The pronotum mounted system consisted of neural stimulators, muscular stimulators, a radio transceiver-equipped microcontroller and a microbattery. Flight initiation, cessation and elevation control were accomplished through neural stimulus of the brain which elicited, suppressed or modulated wing oscillation. Turns were triggered through the direct muscular stimulus of either of the basalar muscles. We characterized the response times, success rates, and free-flight trajectories elicited by our neural control systems in remotely-controlled beetles. We believe this type of technology will open the door to in-flight perturbation and recording of insect flight responses.

  1. Remote radio control of insect flight.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sato, Hirotaka; Berry, Christopher W; Peeri, Yoav; Baghoomian, Emen; Casey, Brendan E; Lavella, Gabriel; Vandenbrooks, John M; Harrison, Jon F; Maharbiz, Michel M

    2009-01-01

    We demonstrated the remote control of insects in free flight via an implantable radio-equipped miniature neural stimulating system. The pronotum mounted system consisted of neural stimulators, muscular stimulators, a radio transceiver-equipped microcontroller and a microbattery. Flight initiation, cessation and elevation control were accomplished through neural stimulus of the brain which elicited, suppressed or modulated wing oscillation. Turns were triggered through the direct muscular stimulus of either of the basalar muscles. We characterized the response times, success rates, and free-flight trajectories elicited by our neural control systems in remotely controlled beetles. We believe this type of technology will open the door to in-flight perturbation and recording of insect flight responses.

  2. Entomologic evaluation of insect hypersensitivity in horses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greiner, E C

    1995-04-01

    Potential methods of incriminating insects as the cause of insect hypersensitivity are presented. A listing of the biting midges known to attack horses in North America is presented also. An example of how species may be determined to be the cause of the hypersensitivity is given using data from a recent study in Florida. Light trap collections indicated the temporal and geographic distribution of potential contributing species and collections made by vacuuming horses further delineated species by proving they feed on horses and the correct locations on the horses to match lesion distribution. Culicoides hypersensitivity in horses in Florida seems to be caused by a series of species active and feeding on the horses at different times of the year.

  3. Velocity correlations in laboratory insect swarms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ni, R.; Ouellette, N. T.

    2015-12-01

    In contrast to animal groups such as bird flocks or migratory herds that display net, directed motion, insect swarms do not possess global order. Without such order, it is difficult to define and characterize the transition to collective behavior in swarms; nevertheless, visual observation of swarms strongly suggests that swarming insects do behave collectively. It has recently been suggested that correlation rather than order is the hallmark of emergent collective behavior. Here, we report measurements of spatial velocity correlation functions in laboratory mating swarms of the non-biting midge Chironomus riparius. Although we find some correlation at short distances, our swarms are in general only weakly correlated, in contrast to what has been observed in field studies. Our results hint at the potentially important role of environmental conditions on collective behavior, and suggest that general indicators of the collective nature of swarming are still needed.

  4. Insect and Pest Control Newsletter, No. 77, July 2011

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2011-07-01

    As reported in some previous newsletters, both FAO and IAEA have been undergoing considerable transformation as a result of a major on-going reform process of FAO that started in 2009 and which is scheduled to be fully implemented by 2013. In addition, the IAEA has seen a complete change of senior management and in January 2011 Mr Daud Mohamad was appointed Deputy Director General Nuclear Sciences and Applications and Head of the Department which includes the Joint FAO/IAEA Division of Nuclear Techniques in Food and Agriculture. The IAEA has been implementing AIPS, a new IAEA wide Information System for Programme Support, representing a drastic transformation of processes. Until recently there were over 60 different and independent internal information systems and AIPS is replacing most of them with one Oracle product. AIPS also entails the adoption of IPSAS, the International Public Sector Accounting Standards, which is used in a majority of international organizations, involving independentlymaintained standards for financial reporting, considered best practice for organizations like ours. AIPS is being introduced in stages or 'plateaus'. The first plateau is devoted to Finance, Procurement, Transportation and the operational parts of Programme and Project Management. This went live in January 2011, in tandem with our adoption of IPSAS. Plateau 2 is scheduled for 2012. In terms of new publications, a special issue of Genetica on 'Molecular Technologies to Improve the Effectiveness of the Sterile Insect Technique' was recently published. A second publication, 'Rearing Codling Moth for the Sterile Insect Technique' is a text book that was published under the FAO Plant Production and Protection Paper series.

  5. Chitin utilization by the insect-transmitted bacterium Xylella fastidiosa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Killiny, Nabil; Prado, Simone S; Almeida, Rodrigo P P

    2010-09-01

    Xylella fastidiosa is an insect-borne bacterium that colonizes xylem vessels of a large number of host plants, including several crops of economic importance. Chitin is a polysaccharide present in the cuticle of leafhopper vectors of X. fastidiosa and may serve as a carbon source for this bacterium. Biological assays showed that X. fastidiosa reached larger populations in the presence of chitin. Additionally, chitin induced phenotypic changes in this bacterium, notably increasing adhesiveness. Quantitative PCR assays indicated transcriptional changes in the presence of chitin, and an enzymatic assay demonstrated chitinolytic activity by X. fastidiosa. An ortholog of the chitinase A gene (chiA) was identified in the X. fastidiosa genome. The in silico analysis revealed that the open reading frame of chiA encodes a protein of 351 amino acids with an estimated molecular mass of 40 kDa. chiA is in a locus that consists of genes implicated in polysaccharide degradation. Moreover, this locus was also found in the genomes of closely related bacteria in the genus Xanthomonas, which are plant but not insect associated. X. fastidiosa degraded chitin when grown on a solid chitin-yeast extract-agar medium and grew in liquid medium with chitin as the sole carbon source; ChiA was also determined to be secreted. The gene encoding ChiA was cloned into Escherichia coli, and endochitinase activity was detected in the transformant, showing that the gene is functional and involved in chitin degradation. The results suggest that X. fastidiosa may use its vectors' foregut surface as a carbon source. In addition, chitin may trigger X. fastidiosa's gene regulation and biofilm formation within vectors. Further work is necessary to characterize the role of chitin and its utilization in X. fastidiosa.

  6. The Virtual Insect Brain protocol: creating and comparing standardized neuroanatomy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Schindelin Johannes E

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In the fly Drosophila melanogaster, new genetic, physiological, molecular and behavioral techniques for the functional analysis of the brain are rapidly accumulating. These diverse investigations on the function of the insect brain use gene expression patterns that can be visualized and provide the means for manipulating groups of neurons as a common ground. To take advantage of these patterns one needs to know their typical anatomy. Results This paper describes the Virtual Insect Brain (VIB protocol, a script suite for the quantitative assessment, comparison, and presentation of neuroanatomical data. It is based on the 3D-reconstruction and visualization software Amira, version 3.x (Mercury Inc. 1. Besides its backbone, a standardization procedure which aligns individual 3D images (series of virtual sections obtained by confocal microscopy to a common coordinate system and computes average intensities for each voxel (volume pixel the VIB protocol provides an elaborate data management system for data administration. The VIB protocol facilitates direct comparison of gene expression patterns and describes their interindividual variability. It provides volumetry of brain regions and helps to characterize the phenotypes of brain structure mutants. Using the VIB protocol does not require any programming skills since all operations are carried out at an intuitively usable graphical user interface. Although the VIB protocol has been developed for the standardization of Drosophila neuroanatomy, the program structure can be used for the standardization of other 3D structures as well. Conclusion Standardizing brains and gene expression patterns is a new approach to biological shape and its variability. The VIB protocol provides a first set of tools supporting this endeavor in Drosophila. The script suite is freely available at http://www.neurofly.de2

  7. Insect and Pest Control Newsletter, No. 77, July 2011

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2011-07-15

    As reported in some previous newsletters, both FAO and IAEA have been undergoing considerable transformation as a result of a major on-going reform process of FAO that started in 2009 and which is scheduled to be fully implemented by 2013. In addition, the IAEA has seen a complete change of senior management and in January 2011 Mr Daud Mohamad was appointed Deputy Director General Nuclear Sciences and Applications and Head of the Department which includes the Joint FAO/IAEA Division of Nuclear Techniques in Food and Agriculture. The IAEA has been implementing AIPS, a new IAEA wide Information System for Programme Support, representing a drastic transformation of processes. Until recently there were over 60 different and independent internal information systems and AIPS is replacing most of them with one Oracle product. AIPS also entails the adoption of IPSAS, the International Public Sector Accounting Standards, which is used in a majority of international organizations, involving independentlymaintained standards for financial reporting, considered best practice for organizations like ours. AIPS is being introduced in stages or 'plateaus'. The first plateau is devoted to Finance, Procurement, Transportation and the operational parts of Programme and Project Management. This went live in January 2011, in tandem with our adoption of IPSAS. Plateau 2 is scheduled for 2012. In terms of new publications, a special issue of Genetica on 'Molecular Technologies to Improve the Effectiveness of the Sterile Insect Technique' was recently published. A second publication, 'Rearing Codling Moth for the Sterile Insect Technique' is a text book that was published under the FAO Plant Production and Protection Paper series.

  8. The Virtual Insect Brain protocol: creating and comparing standardized neuroanatomy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jenett, Arnim; Schindelin, Johannes E; Heisenberg, Martin

    2006-01-01

    Background In the fly Drosophila melanogaster, new genetic, physiological, molecular and behavioral techniques for the functional analysis of the brain are rapidly accumulating. These diverse investigations on the function of the insect brain use gene expression patterns that can be visualized and provide the means for manipulating groups of neurons as a common ground. To take advantage of these patterns one needs to know their typical anatomy. Results This paper describes the Virtual Insect Brain (VIB) protocol, a script suite for the quantitative assessment, comparison, and presentation of neuroanatomical data. It is based on the 3D-reconstruction and visualization software Amira, version 3.x (Mercury Inc.) [1]. Besides its backbone, a standardization procedure which aligns individual 3D images (series of virtual sections obtained by confocal microscopy) to a common coordinate system and computes average intensities for each voxel (volume pixel) the VIB protocol provides an elaborate data management system for data administration. The VIB protocol facilitates direct comparison of gene expression patterns and describes their interindividual variability. It provides volumetry of brain regions and helps to characterize the phenotypes of brain structure mutants. Using the VIB protocol does not require any programming skills since all operations are carried out at an intuitively usable graphical user interface. Although the VIB protocol has been developed for the standardization of Drosophila neuroanatomy, the program structure can be used for the standardization of other 3D structures as well. Conclusion Standardizing brains and gene expression patterns is a new approach to biological shape and its variability. The VIB protocol provides a first set of tools supporting this endeavor in Drosophila. The script suite is freely available at [2] PMID:17196102

  9. Insect and pest control newsletter. No. 58

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2002-01-01

    This issue of the Newsletter announces the development of a draft international standard to facilitate the transboundary shipment of sterile insects stands out. This was developed in response to requests from Member States and the private sector for regulation of the shipping of sterile insects. The draft standard will be considered, reviewed and hopefully endorsed over the next years by the Interim Commission on Phytosanitary Measures (ICPM), the governing body of the International Plant protection Convention (IPPC). Also of significance are the Fruit Fly Trapping Guidelines that have been developed to support the harmonization of monitoring procedures for these pest insects in view of the increasing fruit fly related transboundary interactions resulting from the rapidly growing trade in agricultural commodities, as well as travel, transport and tourism. An upcoming event also in the normative area is an FAO/IAEA Expert Meeting on 'Risk Assessment of Transgenic Arthropods' to be held at FAO, Rome from 8-12 April, 2002. The objective of the meeting are to a) assess current status of transgenesis in pest arthropods; b) to assess biosafety concerns for transgenic arthropod release; c) to provide guidance for future risk assessment protocols for case by case analysis; and d) to assess the possibility of establishing a working group under IPPC for setting guidelines for development and use of transgenic insect technology. An important event at the end of 2001 was the Resolution on the Pan African Tsetse and Trypanosomosis Eradication Campaign (PATTEC) adopted by the FAO Conference held in Rome, 2-13 November 2001 (for the full text of the resolution see page 39).. The resolution acknowledges the severity of the trypanosomosis problem in sub-Saharan Africa, and the potential benefits of tsetse elimination, and calls upon affected member nations to include tsetse eradication in their Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers and for the FAO to support them in their efforts to

  10. Immunity: Insect Immune Memory Goes Viral.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ligoxygakis, Petros

    2017-11-20

    Adaptive memory in insect immunity has been controversial. In this issue, Andino and co-workers propose that acquisition of viral sequences in the host genome gives rise to anti-sense, anti-viral piRNAs. Such sequences can be regarded as both a genomic archive of past infections and as an armour of potential heritable memory. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Unraveling navigational strategies in migratory insects

    OpenAIRE

    Merlin, Christine; Heinze, Stanley; Reppert, Steven M.

    2011-01-01

    Long-distance migration is a strategy some animals use to survive a seasonally changing environment. To reach favorable grounds, migratory animals have evolved sophisticated navigational mechanisms that rely on a map and compasses. In migratory insects, the existence of a map sense (sense of position) remains poorly understood, but recent work has provided new insights into the mechanisms some compasses use for maintaining a constant bearing during long-distance navigation. The best-studied d...

  12. Potent limonoid insect antifeedant from Melia azedarach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carpinella, Cecilia; Ferrayoli, Carlos; Valladares, Graciela; Defago, Maria; Palacios, Sara

    2002-08-01

    Systematic fractionation of a fruit extract from Argentine Melia azedarach L., which was monitored by an insect antifeedant bioassay, led to the isolation of meliartenin, a limonoid antifeedant, which existed as a mixture of two interchangeable isomers. At 4 microg/cm2 and 1 microg/cm2, the isomeric mixture was as active as azadirachtin in strongly inhibiting the larval feeding of Epilachna paenulata Germ. (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) and the polyphagous pest, Spodoptera eridania (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae), respectively.

  13. Cultivating Insect Cells To Produce Recombinant Proteins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spaulding, Glenn; Goodwin, Thomas; Prewett, Tacey; Andrews, Angela; Francis, Karen; O'Connor, Kim

    1996-01-01

    Method of producing recombinant proteins involves growth of insect cells in nutrient solution in cylindrical bioreactor rotating about cylindrical axis, oriented horizontally and infecting cells with viruses into which genes of selected type cloned. Genes in question those encoding production of desired proteins. Horizontal rotating bioreactor preferred for use in method, denoted by acronym "HARV", described in "High-Aspect-Ratio Rotating Cell-Culture Vessel" (MSC-21662).

  14. Management of Insect Sting Hypersensitivity: An Update

    OpenAIRE

    Pesek, Robert D.; Lockey, Richard F.

    2013-01-01

    Reactions to Hymenoptera insect stings are common. While most are self-limited, some induce systemic allergic reactions or anaphylaxis. Prompt recognition, diagnosis, and treatment of these reactions are important for improving quality-of-life and reducing the risk of future sting reactions. This review summarizes the current recommendations to diagnose and treat Hymenoptera sting induced allergic reactions and highlights considerations for various populations throughout the world.

  15. Minor lipophilic compounds in edible insects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monika Sabolová

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Contemporary society is faced with the question how to ensure suffiecient nutrition (quantity and quality for rapidly growing population. One solution can be consumption of edible insect, which can have very good nutritional value (dietary energy, protein, fatty acids, fibers, dietary minerals and vitamins composition. Some edible insects species, which contains a relatively large amount of fat, can have a potential to be a „good" (interesting, new source of minor lipophilic compounds such as sterols (cholesterol and phytosterols and tocopherols in our diet. For this reason, the objective of this work was to characterize the sterols and tocopherols composition of fat from larvae of edible insect Zophobas morio L. and Tenebrio mollitor L. Cholesterol and three phytosterols (campesterol, stigmasterol and β-sitosterol were reliably identified and quantified after hot saponification and derivatization by GC-MS. Other steroid compounds, including 5,6-trans-cholecalciferol were identified only according to the NIST library. Cholesterol was the predominant sterol in all analysed samples. Both types of larvae also contained high amount of phytosterols. Different region of origin had a no significant impact on sterols composition, while the effect of beetle genus was crucial. Tocopherols were analysed by reverse phase HPLC coupled with amperometric detection. Tocopherols content in mealworm larvae was lower than content in edible oils, but important from the nutritional point of view. Change of tocopherols composition was not observed during the storage under different conditions. Larvae of edible insect can be a potential good dietary source of cholesterol, but also vitamin D3 isomers, phytosterols and tocopherols.  

  16. Insect and Pest Control Newsletter. No. 46

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1991-08-01

    This newsletter lists the FAO/IAEA meetings in the field of pest control held between September 1990 and February 1991 and provides very brief summaries of their contents. It also features a special report on the New World Screwworm in North Africa. An eradication programme, organized by the IAEA and the FAO and based on the sterile insect technique, was implemented, and as a result it is expected that the area will be declared free of the pest during autumn 1991

  17. The presence of insect at composting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mudruňka, J.; Lyčková, B.; Kučerová, R.; Glogarová, V.; Závada, J.; Gibesová, B.; Takač, D.

    2017-10-01

    During composting biodegradable waste, microbic organisms reproduce massively, most of which belong to serious biopathogens which are able to penetrate various environmental layers. Their vector species include dipterous insect (Diptera) which reaches considerable amounts in composting plant premises as well as home composting units, mainly during summer months. Therefore measures must be taken to eliminate or reduce this unwanted phenomenon (sanitisation, disinfection). For evaluating obtained results, relative abundance calculation was chosen.

  18. Caste-Specific and Sex-Specific Expression of Chemoreceptor Genes in a Termite

    OpenAIRE

    Mitaka, Yuki; Kobayashi, Kazuya; Mikheyev, Alexander; Tin, Mandy M. Y.; Watanabe, Yutaka; Matsuura, Kenji

    2016-01-01

    The sophisticated colony organization of eusocial insects is primarily maintained through the utilization of pheromones. The regulation of these complex social interactions requires intricate chemoreception systems. The recent publication of the genome of Zootermopsis nevadensis opened a new avenue to study molecular basis of termite caste systems. Although there has been a growing interest in the termite chemoreception system that regulates their sophisticated caste system, the relationship ...

  19. Aquatic insect predators and mosquito control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shaalan, Essam Abdel-Salam; Canyon, Deon V

    2009-12-01

    Mosquitoes are serious biting pests and obligate vectors of many vertebrate pathogens. Their immature larval and pupal life stages are a common feature in most tropical and many temperate water bodies and often form a significant proportion of the biomass. Control strategies rely primarily on the use of larvicides and environmental modification to reduce recruitment and adulticides during periods of disease transmission. Larvicides are usually chemical but can involve biological toxins, agents or organisms. The use of insect predators in mosquito control has been exploited in a limited fashion and there is much room for further investigation and implementation. Insects that are recognized as having predatorial capacity with regard to mosquito prey have been identified in the Orders Odonata, Coleoptera, Diptera (primarily aquatic predators), and Hemiptera (primarily surface predators). Although their capacity is affected by certain biological and physical factors, they could play a major role in mosquito control. Furthermore, better understanding for the mosquitoes-predators relationship(s) could probably lead to satisfactory reduction of mosquito-borne diseases by utilizing either these predators in control programs, for instance biological and/or integrated control, or their kairomones as mosquitoes' ovipoisting repellents. This review covers the predation of different insect species on mosquito larvae, predator-prey-habitat relationships, co-habitation developmental issues, survival and abundance, oviposition avoidance, predatorial capacity and integrated vector control.

  20. Detection of insect damage in almonds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Soowon; Schatzki, Thomas F.

    1999-01-01

    Pinhole insect damage in natural almonds is very difficult to detect on-line. Further, evidence exists relating insect damage to aflatoxin contamination. Hence, for quality and health reasons, methods to detect and remove such damaged nuts are of great importance in this study, we explored the possibility of using x-ray imaging to detect pinhole damage in almonds by insects. X-ray film images of about 2000 almonds and x-ray linescan images of only 522 pinhole damaged almonds were obtained. The pinhole damaged region appeared slightly darker than non-damaged region in x-ray negative images. A machine recognition algorithm was developed to detect these darker regions. The algorithm used the first order and the second order information to identify the damaged region. To reduce the possibility of false positive results due to germ region in high resolution images, germ detection and removal routines were also included. With film images, the algorithm showed approximately an 81 percent correct recognition ratio with only 1 percent false positives whereas line scan images correctly recognized 65 percent of pinholes with about 9 percent false positives. The algorithms was very fast and efficient requiring only minimal computation time. If implemented on line, theoretical throughput of this recognition system would be 66 nuts/second.

  1. Self-heating by large insect larvae?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooley, Nikita L; Emlen, Douglas J; Woods, H Arthur

    2016-12-01

    Do insect larvae ever self-heat significantly from their own metabolic activity and, if so, under what sets of environmental temperatures and across what ranges of body size? We examine these questions using larvae of the Japanese rhinoceros beetle (Trypoxylus dichotomus), chosen for their large size (>20g), simple body plan, and underground lifestyle. Using CO 2 respirometry, we measured larval metabolic rates then converted measured rates of gas exchange into rates of heat production and developed a mathematical model to predict how much steady state body temperatures of underground insects would increase above ambient depending on body size. Collectively, our results suggest that large, extant larvae (20-30g body mass) can self-heat by at most 2°C, and under many common conditions (shallow depths, moister soils) would self-heat by less than 1°C. By extending the model to even larger (hypothetical) body sizes, we show that underground insects with masses >1kg could heat, in warm, dry soils, by 1.5-6°C or more. Additional experiments showed that larval critical thermal maxima (CT max ) were in excess of 43.5°C and that larvae could behaviorally thermoregulate on a thermal gradient bar. Together, these results suggest that large larvae living underground likely regulate their temperatures primarily using behavior; self-heating by metabolism likely contributes little to their heat budgets, at least in most common soil conditions. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Strain improvement of fungal insecticides for controlling insect pests and vector-borne diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fang, Weiguo; Azimzadeh, Philippe; St Leger, Raymond J

    2012-06-01

    Insect pathogenic fungi play an important natural role in controlling insect pests. However, few have been successfully commercialized due to low virulence and sensitivity to abiotic stresses that produce inconsistent results in field applications. These limitations are inherent in most naturally occurring biological control agents but development of recombinant DNA techniques has made it possible to significantly improve the insecticidal efficacy of fungi and their tolerance to adverse conditions, including UV. These advances have been achieved by combining new knowledge derived from basic studies of the molecular biology of these pathogens, technical developments that enable very precise regulation of gene expression, and genes encoding insecticidal proteins from other organisms, particularly spiders and scorpions. Recent coverage of genomes is helping determine the identity, origin, and evolution of traits needed for diverse lifestyles and host switching. In future, such knowledge combined with the precision and malleability of molecular techniques will allow design of multiple pathogens with different strategies and host ranges to be used for different ecosystems, and that will avoid the possibility of the host developing resistance. With increasing public concern over the continued use of synthetic chemical insecticides, these new types of biological insecticides offer a range of environmental-friendly options for cost-effective control of insect pests. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Applying the sterile insect technique to the control of insect pests

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    LaChance, L.E.; Klassen, W.

    1991-01-01

    The sterile insect technique involves the mass-rearing of insects, which are sterilized by gamma rays from a 60 Co source before being released in a controlled fashion into nature. Matings between the sterile insects released and native insects produce no progeny, and so if enough of these matings occur the pest population can be controlled or even eradicated. A modification of the technique, especially suitable for the suppression of the moths and butterflies, is called the F, or inherited sterility method. In this, lower radiation doses are used such that the released males are only partially sterile (30-60%) and the females are fully sterile. When released males mate with native females some progeny are produced, but they are completely sterile. Thus, full expression of the sterility is delayed by one generation. This article describes the use of the sterile insect technique in controlling the screwworm fly, the tsetse fly, the medfly, the pink bollworm and the melon fly, and of the F 1 sterility method in the eradication of local gypsy moth infestations. 18 refs, 5 figs, 1 tab

  4. A proteomic approach for studying insect phylogeny: CAPA peptides of ancient insect taxa (Dictyoptera, Blattoptera as a test case

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gäde Gerd

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Neuropeptide ligands have to fit exactly into their respective receptors and thus the evolution of the coding regions of their genes is constrained and may be strongly conserved. As such, they may be suitable for the reconstruction of phylogenetic relationships within higher taxa. CAPA peptides of major lineages of cockroaches (Blaberidae, Blattellidae, Blattidae, Polyphagidae, Cryptocercidae and of the termite Mastotermes darwiniensis were chosen to test the above hypothesis. The phylogenetic relationships within various groups of the taxon Dictyoptera (praying mantids, termites and cockroaches are still highly disputed. Results Tandem mass spectrometry of neuropeptides from perisympathetic organs was used to obtain sequence data of CAPA peptides from single specimens; the data were analysed by Maximum Parsimony and Bayesian Interference. The resulting cladograms, taking 61 species into account, show a topology which is in general agreement with recent molecular and morphological phylogenetic analyses, including the recent phylogenetic arrangement placing termites within the cockroaches. When sequence data sets from other neuropeptides, viz. adipokinetic hormones and sulfakinins, were included, the general topology of the cladogram did not change but bootstrap values increased considerably. Conclusion This study represents the first comprehensive survey of neuropeptides of insects for solely phylogenetic purposes and concludes that sequences of short neuropeptides are suitable to complement molecular biological and morphological data for the reconstruction of phylogenetic relationships.

  5. Monitoring the agricultural landscape for insect resistance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casas, Joseph; Glaser, J. A.; Copenhaver, Ken

    Farmers in 25 countries on six continents are using plant biotechnology to solve difficult crop production challenges and conserve the environment. In fact, 13.3 million farmers, which include 90 percent of the farming in developing countries, choose to plant biotech crops. Over the past decade, farmers increased area planted in genetically modified (GM) crops by more than 10 percent each year, thus increasing their farm income by more than 44 billion US dollars (1996-2007), and achieved economic, environmental and social benefits in crops such as soybeans, canola, corn and cotton. To date, total acres of biotech crops harvested exceed more than 2 billion with a proven 13-year history of safe use. Over the next decade, expanded adoption combined with current research on 57 crops in 63 countries will broaden the advantages of genetically modified foods for growers, consumers and the environment. Genetically modified (GM) crops with the ability to produce toxins lethal to specific insect pests are covering a larger percentage of the agricultural landscape every year. The United States department of Agriculture (USDA) estimated that 63 percent of corn and 65 percent of cotton contained these specific genetic traits in 2009. The toxins could protect billions of dollars of loss from insect damage for crops valued at greater than 165 billion US dollars in 2008. The stable and efficient production of these crops has taken on even more importance in recent years with their use, not only as a food source, but now also a source of fuel. It is in the best interest of the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) to ensure the continued efficacy of toxin producing GM crops as their use reduces pesticides harmful to humans and animals. However, population genetics models have indicated the risk of insect pests developing resistance to these toxins if a high percentage of acreage is grown in these crops. The USEPA is developing methods to monitor the agricultural

  6. Identification of three potential insect vectors of Xylella fastidiosa in southern Italy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Toufic ELBEAINO

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available In order to identify potential vectors of Xylella fastidiosa in olive orchards in Puglia (southern Italy, Hemiptera insects were collected from October to December, 2013, in olive orchards with high incidences of X. fastidiosa associated with “rapid decline” symptoms. The study focused on species in the Auchenorrhyncha (sharpshooter leafhoppers and froghoppers or spittlebugs, a group that includes known vectors of X. fastidiosa.  Adults of three species, i.e. Philaenus spumarius L. (Aphrophoridae, Neophilaenus campestris Fallén (Aphrophoridae and Euscelis lineolatus Brullé (Cicadellidae were captured, from which total DNA was extracted and assayed by PCR using three sets of specific primers designed for X. fastidiosa detection. Results of PCR showed that 38 out of a total of 84 tested insects were positive for X. fastidiosa, i.e. eight (of 20 P. spumarius, 14 (of 18 N. campestris and 16 (of 46 E. lineolatus. PCR amplicons of the RNA polymerase sigma-70 factor gene from six specimens (two of each insect species were sequenced. The sequences obtained were 99.3‒99.4% identical. BlastN analyses demonstrated these sequences to be similar to those of X. fastidiosa isolates from olive OL-X and OL-G reported from Puglia, whereas they displayed distant molecular identity (always less than 98% with X. fastidiosa subspecies from other countries. The detection of X. fastidiosa in P. spumarius and, for the first time, in N. campestris and E. lineolatus (which, unlike the others, is a phloem feeder, indicates potential vectoring roles of these insects for the spread of the bacterium in Puglia. Further investigations and specific infectivity trials are required to definitively determine the roles of these insects as effective vectors of this pathogen.

  7. Specific Midgut Region Controlling the Symbiont Population in an Insect-Microbe Gut Symbiotic Association

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Jiyeun Kate; Kim, Na Hyang; Jang, Ho Am; Kikuchi, Yoshitomo; Kim, Chan-Hee

    2013-01-01

    Many insects possess symbiotic bacteria that affect the biology of the host. The level of the symbiont population in the host is a pivotal factor that modulates the biological outcome of the symbiotic association. Hence, the symbiont population should be maintained at a proper level by the host's control mechanisms. Several mechanisms for controlling intracellular symbionts of insects have been reported, while mechanisms for controlling extracellular gut symbionts of insects are poorly understood. The bean bug Riptortus pedestris harbors a betaproteobacterial extracellular symbiont of the genus Burkholderia in the midgut symbiotic organ designated the M4 region. We found that the M4B region, which is directly connected to the M4 region, also harbors Burkholderia symbiont cells, but the symbionts therein are mostly dead. A series of experiments demonstrated that the M4B region exhibits antimicrobial activity, and the antimicrobial activity is specifically potent against the Burkholderia symbiont but not the cultured Burkholderia and other bacteria. The antimicrobial activity of the M4B region was detected in symbiotic host insects, reaching its highest point at the fifth instar, but not in aposymbiotic host insects, which suggests the possibility of symbiont-mediated induction of the antimicrobial activity. This antimicrobial activity was not associated with upregulation of antimicrobial peptides of the host. Based on these results, we propose that the M4B region is a specialized gut region of R. pedestris that plays a critical role in controlling the population of the Burkholderia gut symbiont. The molecular basis of the antimicrobial activity is of great interest and deserves future study. PMID:24038695

  8. Metabolic Coevolution in the Bacterial Symbiosis of Whiteflies and Related Plant Sap-Feeding Insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luan, Jun-Bo; Chen, Wenbo; Hasegawa, Daniel K; Simmons, Alvin M; Wintermantel, William M; Ling, Kai-Shu; Fei, Zhangjun; Liu, Shu-Sheng; Douglas, Angela E

    2015-09-15

    Genomic decay is a common feature of intracellular bacteria that have entered into symbiosis with plant sap-feeding insects. This study of the whitefly Bemisia tabaci and two bacteria (Portiera aleyrodidarum and Hamiltonella defensa) cohoused in each host cell investigated whether the decay of Portiera metabolism genes is complemented by host and Hamiltonella genes, and compared the metabolic traits of the whitefly symbiosis with other sap-feeding insects (aphids, psyllids, and mealybugs). Parallel genomic and transcriptomic analysis revealed that the host genome contributes multiple metabolic reactions that complement or duplicate Portiera function, and that Hamiltonella may contribute multiple cofactors and one essential amino acid, lysine. Homologs of the Bemisia metabolism genes of insect origin have also been implicated in essential amino acid synthesis in other sap-feeding insect hosts, indicative of parallel coevolution of shared metabolic pathways across multiple symbioses. Further metabolism genes coded in the Bemisia genome are of bacterial origin, but phylogenetically distinct from Portiera, Hamiltonella and horizontally transferred genes identified in other sap-feeding insects. Overall, 75% of the metabolism genes of bacterial origin are functionally unique to one symbiosis, indicating that the evolutionary history of metabolic integration in these symbioses is strongly contingent on the pattern of horizontally acquired genes. Our analysis, further, shows that bacteria with genomic decay enable host acquisition of complex metabolic pathways by multiple independent horizontal gene transfers from exogenous bacteria. Specifically, each horizontally acquired gene can function with other genes in the pathway coded by the symbiont, while facilitating the decay of the symbiont gene coding the same reaction. © The Author(s) 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  9. Structural investigation of bistrifluron using x-ray crystallography, NMR spectroscopy, and molecular modeling

    CERN Document Server

    Moon, J K; Rhee, S K; Kim, G B; Yun, H S; Chung, B J; Lee, S S; Lim, Y H

    2002-01-01

    A new insecticide, bistrifluron acts as an inhibitor of insect development and interferes with the cuticle formation of insects. Since it shows low acute oral and dermal toxicities, it can be one of potent insecticides. Based on X-ray crystallography, NMR spectroscopy and molecular modeling, the structural studies of bistrifluron have been carried out.

  10. Determining putative vectors of the Bogia Coconut Syndrome phytoplasma using loop-mediated isothermal amplification of single-insect feeding media

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Hengyu; Wilson, Bree A. L.; Ash, Gavin J.; Woruba, Sharon B.; Fletcher, Murray J.; You, Minsheng; Yang, Guang; Gurr, Geoff M.

    2016-01-01

    Phytoplasmas are insect vectored mollicutes responsible for disease in many economically important crops. Determining which insect species are vectors of a given phytoplasma is important for managing disease but is methodologically challenging because disease-free plants need to be exposed to large numbers of insects, often over many months. A relatively new method to detect likely transmission involves molecular testing for phytoplasma DNA in sucrose solution that insects have fed upon. In this study we combined this feeding medium method with a loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) assay to study 627 insect specimens of 11 Hemiptera taxa sampled from sites in Papua New Guinea affected by Bogia coconut syndrome (BCS). The LAMP assay detected phytoplasma DNA from the feeding solution and head tissue of insects from six taxa belonging to four families: Derbidae, Lophopidae, Flatidae and Ricaniidae. Two other taxa yielded positives only from the heads and the remainder tested negative. These results demonstrate the utility of combining single-insect feeding medium tests with LAMP assays to identify putative vectors that can be the subject of transmission tests and to better understand phytoplasma pathosystems. PMID:27786249

  11. Use of necrophagous insects as evidence of cadaver relocation: myth or reality?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gosselin, Matthias; Hedouin, Valéry

    2017-01-01

    The use of insects as indicators of post-mortem displacement is discussed in many texts, courses and TV shows, and several studies addressing this issue have been published. Although the concept is widely cited, it is poorly understood, and only a few forensic cases have successfully applied such a method. The use of necrophagous insects as evidence of cadaver relocation actually involves a wide range of biological aspects. Distribution, microhabitat, phenology, behavioral ecology, and molecular analysis are among the research areas associated with this topic. This article provides the first review of the current knowledge and addresses the potential and limitations of different methods to evaluate their applicability. This work reveals numerous weaknesses and erroneous beliefs as well as many possibilities and research opportunities. PMID:28785513

  12. Use of necrophagous insects as evidence of cadaver relocation: myth or reality?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Damien Charabidze

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available The use of insects as indicators of post-mortem displacement is discussed in many texts, courses and TV shows, and several studies addressing this issue have been published. Although the concept is widely cited, it is poorly understood, and only a few forensic cases have successfully applied such a method. The use of necrophagous insects as evidence of cadaver relocation actually involves a wide range of biological aspects. Distribution, microhabitat, phenology, behavioral ecology, and molecular analysis are among the research areas associated with this topic. This article provides the first review of the current knowledge and addresses the potential and limitations of different methods to evaluate their applicability. This work reveals numerous weaknesses and erroneous beliefs as well as many possibilities and research opportunities.

  13. Three-way interaction among plants, bacteria, and coleopteran insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wielkopolan, Beata; Obrępalska-Stęplowska, Aleksandra

    2016-08-01

    Coleoptera, the largest and the most diverse Insecta order, is characterized by multiple adaptations to plant feeding. Insect-associated microorganisms can be important mediators and modulators of interactions between insects and plants. Interactions between plants and insects are highly complex and involve multiple factors. There are various defense mechanisms initiated by plants upon attack by herbivorous insects, including the development of morphological structures and the synthesis of toxic secondary metabolites and volatiles. In turn, herbivores have adapted to feeding on plants and further sophisticated adaptations to overcome plant responses may continue to evolve. Herbivorous insects may detoxify toxic phytocompounds, sequester poisonous plant factors, and alter their own overall gene expression pattern. Moreover, insects are associated with microbes, which not only considerably affect insects, but can also modify plant defense responses to the benefit of their host. Plants are also frequently associated with endophytes, which may act as bioinsecticides. Therefore, it is very important to consider the factors influencing the interaction between plants and insects. Herbivorous insects cause considerable damage to global crop production. Coleoptera is the largest and the most diverse order in the class Insecta. In this review, various aspects of the interactions among insects, microbes, and plants are described with a focus on coleopteran species, their bacterial symbionts, and their plant hosts to demonstrate that many factors contribute to the success of coleopteran herbivory.

  14. Insect anaphylaxis: where are we? The stinging facts 2012.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tracy, James M; Khan, Fatima S; Demain, Jeffrey G

    2012-08-01

    Insect allergy remains an important cause of morbidity and mortality in the United States. In 2011, the third iteration of the stinging insect hypersensitivity practice parameter was published, the first being published in 1999 and the second in 2004. Since the 2004 edition, our understanding of insect hypersensitivity has continued to expand and has been incorporated into the 2011 edition. This work will review the relevant changes in the management of insect hypersensitivity occurring since 2004 and present our current understanding of the insect hypersensitivity diagnosis and management. Since the 2004 commissioning by the Joint Task Force (JTF) on Practice Parameters of 'Stinging insect hypersensitivity: a practice parameter update', there have been important contributions to our understanding of insect allergy. These contributions were incorporated into the 2011 iteration. Similar efforts were made by the European Allergy Asthma and Clinical Immunology Interest Group in 2005 and most recently in 2011 by the British Society of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. Our understanding of insect allergy, including the natural history, epidemiology, diagnostic testing, and risk factors, has greatly expanded. This evolution of knowledge should provide improved long-term management of stinging insect hypersensitivity. This review will focus primarily on the changes between the 2004 and 2011 stinging insect practice parameter commissioned by the JTF on Practice Parameters, but will, where appropriate, highlight the differences between working groups.

  15. Toxicological characteristics of edible insects in China: A historical review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Yu; Wang, Di; Xu, Meng-Lei; Shi, Shu-Sen; Xiong, Jin-Feng

    2018-04-10

    Edible insects are ideal food sources, which contain important nutrients and health-promoting compounds. With a rapid development of industrial insect farming, insect-derived food is a novel and emerging food industry. Edible insects have been traditionally consumed in various communities, while continuously gaining relevance in today's society; however, they currently remain underutilized. Although there are a large number of literature on edible insects, these literature primarily focus on the nutritional value edible insects. The toxicity assessment data of edible insects remain incomprehensive, especially for the new national standard that is currently in effect; and many data and conclusions are not accurately specified/reported. Therefore, we performed a literature review and summarized the data on the toxicological assessment of edible insects in China. The review first describes the research progress on safety toxicological assessment, and then offers references regarding the development of 34 edible insect species in China. These data can be a platform for the development of future toxicological assessment strategies, which can be carried out by a multidisciplinary team, possibly consisting of food engineers, agronomists, farmers, and so on, to improve the acceptability of edible insects. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Use of habitat odour by host-seeking insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webster, Ben; Cardé, Ring T

    2017-05-01

    Locating suitable feeding or oviposition sites is essential for insect survival. Understanding how insects achieve this is crucial, not only for understanding the ecology and evolution of insect-host interactions, but also for the development of sustainable pest-control strategies that exploit insects' host-seeking behaviours. Volatile chemical cues are used by foraging insects to locate and recognise potential hosts but in nature these resources usually are patchily distributed, making chance encounters with host odour plumes rare over distances greater than tens of metres. The majority of studies on insect host-seeking have focussed on short-range orientation to easily detectable cues and it is only recently that we have begun to understand how insects overcome this challenge. Recent advances show that insects from a wide range of feeding guilds make use of 'habitat cues', volatile chemical cues released over a relatively large area that indicate a locale where more specific host cues are most likely to be found. Habitat cues differ from host cues in that they tend to be released in larger quantities, are more easily detectable over longer distances, and may lack specificity, yet provide an effective way for insects to maximise their chances of subsequently encountering specific host cues. This review brings together recent advances in this area, discussing key examples and similarities in strategies used by haematophagous insects, soil-dwelling insects and insects that forage around plants. We also propose and provide evidence for a new theory that general and non-host plant volatiles can be used by foraging herbivores to locate patches of vegetation at a distance in the absence of more specific host cues, explaining some of the many discrepancies between laboratory and field trials that attempt to make use of plant-derived repellents for controlling insect pests. © 2016 Cambridge Philosophical Society.

  17. Analysis of chemical profiles of insect adhesion secretions by gas chromatography–mass spectrometry

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Reitz, Manuela [Institute of Organic Chemistry, University of Tübingen, Auf der Morgenstelle 8, 72076 Tübingen (Germany); Gerhardt, Heike [Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Tübingen, Auf der Morgenstelle 8, 72076 Tübingen (Germany); Schmitt, Christian; Betz, Oliver [Institute of Evolution and Ecology, University of Tübingen, Auf der Morgenstelle 28, 72076 Tübingen (Germany); Albert, Klaus, E-mail: klaus.albert@uni-tuebingen.de [Institute of Organic Chemistry, University of Tübingen, Auf der Morgenstelle 8, 72076 Tübingen (Germany); Lämmerhofer, Michael, E-mail: michael.laemmerhofer@uni-tuebingen.de [Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Tübingen, Auf der Morgenstelle 8, 72076 Tübingen (Germany)

    2015-01-07

    Highlights: • Adhesion secretions of desert locust analyzed by GC–MS. • Insect secretions are composed of apolar and polar constituents. • Sampling simplified with contact SPME as compared to solvent sampling. • Thin-film SPME-GC–MS revealed complex alkane patterns for insect secretions. • Differences in tarsal (feet) secretions and samples from tibiae (upper legs) identified. - Abstract: This article reports on the chemical analysis of molecular profiles of tarsal secretions of the desert locust Schistocerca gregaria (Forsskål, 1775) by gas chromatography hyphenated with quadrupol mass spectrometry (GC–MS) as well as {sup 1}H-nuclear magnetic resonance ({sup 1}H NMR) spectroscopy. Special focus of this study was to elaborate on sampling methods which enable selective microscale extraction of insect secretions in a spatially controlled manner, in particular tarsal adhesive secretions and secretions located on cuticle surfaces at the tibia. Various solvent sampling procedures and contact solid-phase microextraction (SPME) methods were compared in terms of comprehensiveness and extraction efficiencies as measured by signal intensities in GC–MS. Solvent sampling with water as extraction solvent gave access to the elucidation of chemical profiles of polar compound classes such as amino acids and carbohydrates, but is extremely tedious. Contact SPME on the other hand can be regarded as a simplified and more elegant alternative, in particular for the lipophilic compound fraction. Many proteinogenic amino acids and ornithine as well as carbohydrate monomers arabinose, xylose, glucose, and galactose were detected in tarsal secretions after acid hydrolysis of aqueous extracts. Qualitatively similar but quantitatively significantly different molecular profiles were found for the lipid fraction which contained mainly n-alkanes and internally branched monomethyl-, dimethyl-, and trimethyl-alkanes in the C23–C49 range as well as long chain fatty acids and

  18. Analysis of chemical profiles of insect adhesion secretions by gas chromatography–mass spectrometry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Reitz, Manuela; Gerhardt, Heike; Schmitt, Christian; Betz, Oliver; Albert, Klaus; Lämmerhofer, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Highlights: • Adhesion secretions of desert locust analyzed by GC–MS. • Insect secretions are composed of apolar and polar constituents. • Sampling simplified with contact SPME as compared to solvent sampling. • Thin-film SPME-GC–MS revealed complex alkane patterns for insect secretions. • Differences in tarsal (feet) secretions and samples from tibiae (upper legs) identified. - Abstract: This article reports on the chemical analysis of molecular profiles of tarsal secretions of the desert locust Schistocerca gregaria (Forsskål, 1775) by gas chromatography hyphenated with quadrupol mass spectrometry (GC–MS) as well as 1 H-nuclear magnetic resonance ( 1 H NMR) spectroscopy. Special focus of this study was to elaborate on sampling methods which enable selective microscale extraction of insect secretions in a spatially controlled manner, in particular tarsal adhesive secretions and secretions located on cuticle surfaces at the tibia. Various solvent sampling procedures and contact solid-phase microextraction (SPME) methods were compared in terms of comprehensiveness and extraction efficiencies as measured by signal intensities in GC–MS. Solvent sampling with water as extraction solvent gave access to the elucidation of chemical profiles of polar compound classes such as amino acids and carbohydrates, but is extremely tedious. Contact SPME on the other hand can be regarded as a simplified and more elegant alternative, in particular for the lipophilic compound fraction. Many proteinogenic amino acids and ornithine as well as carbohydrate monomers arabinose, xylose, glucose, and galactose were detected in tarsal secretions after acid hydrolysis of aqueous extracts. Qualitatively similar but quantitatively significantly different molecular profiles were found for the lipid fraction which contained mainly n-alkanes and internally branched monomethyl-, dimethyl-, and trimethyl-alkanes in the C23–C49 range as well as long chain fatty acids and aldehydes

  19. Molecular Mechanism and Genetic Determinants of Buprofezin Degradation

    OpenAIRE

    Chen, Xueting; Ji, Junbin; Zhao, Leizhen; Qiu, Jiguo; Dai, Chen; Wang, Weiwu; He, Jian; Jiang, Jiandong; Hong, Qing; Yan, Xin

    2017-01-01

    Buprofezin is a widely used insect growth regulator whose residue has been frequently detected in the environment, posing a threat to aquatic organisms and nontarget insects. Microorganisms play an important role in the degradation of buprofezin in the natural environment. However, the relevant catabolic pathway has not been fully characterized, and the molecular mechanism of catabolism is still completely unknown. Rhodococcus qingshengii YL-1 can utilize buprofezin as a sole source of carbon...

  20. Sociality and the telencephalic distribution of corticotrophin-releasing factor, urocortin 3, and binding sites for CRF type 1 and type 2 receptors: A comparative study of eusocial naked mole-rats and solitary Cape mole-rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coen, Clive W; Kalamatianos, Theodosis; Oosthuizen, Maria K; Poorun, Ravi; Faulkes, Christopher G; Bennett, Nigel C

    2015-11-01

    Various aspects of social behavior are influenced by the highly conserved corticotrophin-releasing factor (CRF) family of peptides and receptors in the mammalian telencephalon. This study has mapped and compared the telencephalic distribution of the CRF receptors, CRF1 and CRF2 , and two of their ligands, CRF and urocortin 3, respectively, in African mole-rat species with diametrically opposed social behavior. Naked mole-rats live in large eusocial colonies that are characterized by exceptional levels of social cohesion, tolerance, and cooperation in burrowing, foraging, defense, and alloparental care for the offspring of the single reproductive female. Cape mole-rats are solitary; they tolerate conspecifics only fleetingly during the breeding season. The telencephalic sites at which the level of CRF1 binding in naked mole-rats exceeds that in Cape mole-rats include the basolateral amygdaloid nucleus, hippocampal CA3 subfield, and dentate gyrus; in contrast, the level is greater in Cape mole-rats in the shell of the nucleus accumbens and medial habenular nucleus. For CRF2 binding, the sites with a greater level in naked mole-rats include the basolateral amygdaloid nucleus and dentate gyrus, but the septohippocampal nucleus, lateral septal nuclei, amygdalostriatal transition area, bed nucleus of the stria terminalis, and medial habenular nucleus display a greater level in Cape mole-rats. The results are discussed with reference to neuroanatomical and behavioral studies of various species, including monogamous and promiscuous voles. By analogy with findings in those species, we speculate that the abundance of CRF1 binding in the nucleus accumbens of Cape mole-rats reflects their lack of affiliative behavior. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  1. Response of native insect communities to invasive plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bezemer, T Martijn; Harvey, Jeffrey A; Cronin, James T

    2014-01-01

    Invasive plants can disrupt a range of trophic interactions in native communities. As a novel resource they can affect the performance of native insect herbivores and their natural enemies such as parasitoids and predators, and this can lead to host shifts of these herbivores and natural enemies. Through the release of volatile compounds, and by changing the chemical complexity of the habitat, invasive plants can also affect the behavior of native insects such as herbivores, parasitoids, and pollinators. Studies that compare insects on related native and invasive plants in invaded habitats show that the abundance of insect herbivores is often lower on invasive plants, but that damage levels are similar. The impact of invasive plants on the population dynamics of resident insect species has been rarely examined, but invasive plants can influence the spatial and temporal dynamics of native insect (meta)populations and communities, ultimately leading to changes at the landscape level.

  2. Phylogenomics resolves the timing and pattern of insect evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Misof, Bernhard; Liu, Shanlin; Meusemann, Karen; Peters, Ralph S; Donath, Alexander; Mayer, Christoph; Frandsen, Paul B; Ware, Jessica; Flouri, Tomáš; Beutel, Rolf G; Niehuis, Oliver; Petersen, Malte; Izquierdo-Carrasco, Fernando; Wappler, Torsten; Rust, Jes; Aberer, Andre J; Aspöck, Ulrike; Aspöck, Horst; Bartel, Daniela; Blanke, Alexander; Berger, Simon; Böhm, Alexander; Buckley, Thomas R; Calcott, Brett; Chen, Junqing; Friedrich, Frank; Fukui, Makiko; Fujita, Mari; Greve, Carola; Grobe, Peter; Gu, Shengchang; Huang, Ying; Jermiin, Lars S; Kawahara, Akito Y; Krogmann, Lars; Kubiak, Martin; Lanfear, Robert; Letsch, Harald; Li, Yiyuan; Li, Zhenyu; Li, Jiguang; Lu, Haorong; Machida, Ryuichiro; Mashimo, Yuta; Kapli, Pashalia; McKenna, Duane D; Meng, Guanliang; Nakagaki, Yasutaka; Navarrete-Heredia, José Luis; Ott, Michael; Ou, Yanxiang; Pass, Günther; Podsiadlowski, Lars; Pohl, Hans; von Reumont, Björn M; Schütte, Kai; Sekiya, Kaoru; Shimizu, Shota; Slipinski, Adam; Stamatakis, Alexandros; Song, Wenhui; Su, Xu; Szucsich, Nikolaus U; Tan, Meihua; Tan, Xuemei; Tang, Min; Tang, Jingbo; Timelthaler, Gerald; Tomizuka, Shigekazu; Trautwein, Michelle; Tong, Xiaoli; Uchifune, Toshiki; Walzl, Manfred G; Wiegmann, Brian M; Wilbrandt, Jeanne; Wipfler, Benjamin; Wong, Thomas K F; Wu, Qiong; Wu, Gengxiong; Xie, Yinlong; Yang, Shenzhou; Yang, Qing; Yeates, David K; Yoshizawa, Kazunori; Zhang, Qing; Zhang, Rui; Zhang, Wenwei; Zhang, Yunhui; Zhao, Jing; Zhou, Chengran; Zhou, Lili; Ziesmann, Tanja; Zou, Shijie; Li, Yingrui; Xu, Xun; Zhang, Yong; Yang, Huanming; Wang, Jian; Wang, Jun; Kjer, Karl M; Zhou, Xin

    2014-11-07

    Insects are the most speciose group of animals, but the phylogenetic relationships of many major lineages remain unresolved. We inferred the phylogeny of insects from 1478 protein-coding genes. Phylogenomic analyses of nucleotide and amino acid sequences, with site-specific nucleotide or domain-specific amino acid substitution models, produced statistically robust and congruent results resolving previously controversial phylogenetic relations hips. We dated the origin of insects to the Early Ordovician [~479 million years ago (Ma)], of insect flight to the Early Devonian (~406 Ma), of major extant lineages to the Mississippian (~345 Ma), and the major diversification of holometabolous insects to the Early Cretaceous. Our phylogenomic study provides a comprehensive reliable scaffold for future comparative analyses of evolutionary innovations among insects. Copyright © 2014, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  3. Phylogenetic origin and diversification of RNAi pathway genes in insects

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dowling, Daniel; Pauli, Thomas; Donath, Alexander

    2016-01-01

    RNAinterference (RNAi) refers tothe set ofmolecular processes foundin eukaryotic organisms in which smallRNAmolecules mediate the silencing or down-regulation of target genes. In insects, RNAi serves a number of functions, including regulation of endogenous genes, anti-viral defense, and defense...... against transposable elements. Despite being well studied in model organisms, such as Drosophila, the distribution of core RNAi pathway genes and their evolution in insects is not well understood. Here we present the most comprehensive overview of the distribution and diversity of core RNAi pathway genes...... across 100 insect species, encompassing all currently recognized insect orders. We inferred the phylogenetic origin of insect-specific RNAi pathway genes and also identified several hitherto unrecorded gene expansions using whole-body transcriptome data from the international 1KITE (1000 Insect...

  4. Strategies for Enhanced Crop Resistance to Insect Pests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Douglas, Angela E

    2018-04-29

    Insect pests are responsible for substantial crop losses worldwide through direct damage and transmission of plant diseases, and novel approaches that complement or replace broad-spectrum chemical insecticides will facilitate the sustainable intensification of food production in the coming decades. Multiple strategies for improved crop resistance to insect pests, especially strategies relating to plant secondary metabolism and immunity and microbiome science, are becoming available. Recent advances in metabolic engineering of plant secondary chemistry offer the promise of specific toxicity or deterrence to insect pests; improved understanding of plant immunity against insects provides routes to optimize plant defenses against insects; and the microbiomes of insect pests can be exploited, either as a target or as a vehicle for delivery of insecticidal agents. Implementation of these advances will be facilitated by ongoing advances in plant breeding and genetic technologies.

  5. Nonlinear flight dynamics and stability of hovering model insects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liang, Bin; Sun, Mao

    2013-01-01

    Current analyses on insect dynamic flight stability are based on linear theory and limited to small disturbance motions. However, insects' aerial environment is filled with swirling eddies and wind gusts, and large disturbances are common. Here, we numerically solve the equations of motion coupled with the Navier–Stokes equations to simulate the large disturbance motions and analyse the nonlinear flight dynamics of hovering model insects. We consider two representative model insects, a model hawkmoth (large size, low wingbeat frequency) and a model dronefly (small size, high wingbeat frequency). For small and large initial disturbances, the disturbance motion grows with time, and the insects tumble and never return to the equilibrium state; the hovering flight is inherently (passively) unstable. The instability is caused by a pitch moment produced by forward/backward motion and/or a roll moment produced by side motion of the insect. PMID:23697714

  6. Non-destructive sampling of ancient insect DNA

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomsen, Philip Francis; Elias, Scott; Gilbert, Tom

    2009-01-01

    BACKGROUND: A major challenge for ancient DNA (aDNA) studies on insect remains is that sampling procedures involve at least partial destruction of the specimens. A recent extraction protocol reveals the possibility of obtaining DNA from past insect remains without causing visual morphological...... of 77-204 base pairs (-bp) in size using species-specific and general insect primers. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: The applied non-destructive DNA extraction method shows promising potential on insect museum specimens of historical age as far back as AD 1820, but less so on the ancient permafrost......-preserved insect fossil remains tested, where DNA was obtained from samples up to ca. 26,000 years old. The non-frozen sediment DNA approach appears to have great potential for recording the former presence of insect taxa not normally preserved as macrofossils and opens new frontiers in research on ancient...

  7. Mycoplasmas, plants, insect vectors: a matrimonial triangle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garnier, M; Foissac, X; Gaurivaud, P; Laigret, F; Renaudin, J; Saillard, C; Bové, J M

    2001-10-01

    Plant pathogenic mycoplasmas were discovered by electron microscopy, in 1967, long after the discovery and culture in 1898 of the first pathogenic mycoplasma of animal origin, Mycoplasma mycoides. Mycoplasmas are Eubacteria of the class Mollicutes, a group of organisms phylogenetically related to Gram-positive bacteria. Their more characteristic features reside in the small size of their genomes, the low guanine (G) plus cytosine (C) content of their genomic DNA and the lack of a cell wall. Plant pathogenic mycoplasmas are responsible for several hundred diseases and belong to two groups: the phytoplasmas and the spiroplasmas. The phytoplasmas (previously called MLOs, for mycoplasma like organisms) were discovered first; they are pleiomorphic, and have so far resisted in vitro cultivation. Phytoplasmas represent the largest group of plant pathogenic Mollicutes. Only three plant pathogenic spiroplasmas are known today. Spiroplasma citri, the agent of citrus stubborn was discovered and cultured in 1970 and shown to be helical and motile. S. kunkelii is the causal agent of corn stunt. S. phoeniceum, responsible for periwinkle yellows, was discovered in Syria. There are many other spiroplasmas associated with insects and ticks. Plant pathogenic mycoplasmas are restricted to the phloem sieve tubes in which circulates the photosynthetically-enriched sap, the food for many phloem-feeding insects (aphids, leafhoppers, psyllids, etc.). Interestingly, phytopathogenic mycoplasmas are very specifically transmitted by leafhoppers or psyllid species. In this paper, the most recent knowledge on phytopathogenic mycoplasmas in relation with their insect and plant habitats is presented as well as the experiments carried out to control plant mycoplasma diseases, by expression of mycoplasma-directed-antibodies in plants (plantibodies).

  8. Design and mechanical properties of insect cuticle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vincent, Julian F V; Wegst, Ulrike G K

    2004-07-01

    Since nearly all adult insects fly, the cuticle has to provide a very efficient and lightweight skeleton. Information is available about the mechanical properties of cuticle-Young's modulus of resilin is about 1 MPa, of soft cuticles about 1 kPa to 50 MPa, of sclerotised cuticles 1-20 GPa; Vicker's Hardness of sclerotised cuticle ranges between 25 and 80 kgf mm(-2); density is 1-1.3 kg m(-3)-and one of its components, chitin nanofibres, the Young's modulus of which is more than 150 GPa. Experiments based on fracture mechanics have not been performed although the layered structure probably provides some toughening. The structural performance of wings and legs has been measured, but our understanding of the importance of buckling is lacking: it can stiffen the structure (by elastic postbuckling in wings, for example) or be a failure mode. We know nothing of fatigue properties (yet, for instance, the insect wing must undergo millions of cycles, flexing or buckling on each cycle). The remarkable mechanical performance and efficiency of cuticle can be analysed and compared with those of other materials using material property charts and material indices. Presented in this paper are four: Young's modulus-density (stiffness per unit weight), specific Young's modulus-specific strength (elastic hinges, elastic energy storage per unit weight), toughness-Young's modulus (fracture resistance under various loading conditions), and hardness (wear resistance). In conjunction with a structural analysis of cuticle these charts help to understand the relevance of microstructure (fibre orientation effects in tendons, joints and sense organs, for example) and shape (including surface structure) of this fibrous composite for a given function. With modern techniques for analysis of structure and material, and emphasis on nanocomposites and self-assembly, insect cuticle should be the archetype for composites at all levels of scale.

  9. Flower Constancy, Insect Psychology, and Plant Evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chittka, Lars; Thomson, James D.; Waser, Nickolas M.

    Individuals of some species of pollinating insects tend to restrict their visits to only a few of the available plant species, in the process bypassing valuable food sources. The question of why this flower constancy exists is a rich and important one with implications for the organization of natural communities of plants, floral evolution, and our understanding of the learning processes involved in finding food. Some scientists have assumed that flower constancy is adaptive per se. Others argued that constancy occurs because memory capacity for floral features in insects is limited, but attempts to identify the limitations often remained rather simplistic. We elucidate now different sensory and motor memories from natural foraging tasks are stored and retrieved, using concepts from modern learning science and visual search, and conclude that flower constancy is likely to have multiple causes. Possible constraints favoring constancy are interference sensitivity of short-term memory, and temporal limitations on retrieving information from long-term memory as rapidly as from short-term memory, but further empirical evidence is needed to substantiate these possibilities. In addition, retrieving memories may be slower and more prone to errors when there are several options than when an insect copes with only a single task. In addition to memory limitations, we also point out alternative explanations for flower constancy. We then consider the way in which floral parameters, such as interplant distances, nectar rewards, flower morphology, and floral color (as seen through bees' eyes) affect constancy. Finally, we discuss the implications of pollinator constancy for plant evolution. To date there is no evidence that flowers have diverged to favor constancy, although the appropriate tests may not have yet been conducted. However, there is good evidence against the notion that pollinator constancy is involved in speciation or maintenance of plant species integrity.

  10. Helminthes and insects: maladies or therapies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    El-Tantawy, Nora L

    2015-02-01

    By definition, parasites cause harm to their hosts. But, considerable evidence from ancient traditional medicine has supported the theory of using parasites and their products in treating many diseases. Maggots have been used successfully to treat chronic, long-standing, infected wounds which failed to respond to conventional treatment by many beneficial effects on the wound including debridement, disinfection, and healing enhancement. Maggots are also applied in forensic medicine to estimate time between the death and discovery of a corpse and in entomotoxicology involving the potential use of insects as alternative samples for detecting drugs and toxins in death investigations. Leeches are segmented invertebrates, famous by their blood-feeding habits and used in phlebotomy to treat various ailments since ancient times. Leech therapy is experiencing resurgence nowadays in health care principally in plastic and reconstructive surgery. Earthworms provide a source of medicinally useful products with potential antimicrobial, antiviral, and anticancer properties. Lumbrokinases are a group of fibrinolytic enzymes isolated and purified from earthworms capable of degrading plasminogen-rich and plasminogen-free fibrin and so can be used to treat various conditions associated with thrombotic diseases. Helminth infection has been proved to have therapeutic effects in both animal and human clinical trials with promising evidence in treating many allergic diseases and can block the induction of or reduce the severity of some autoimmune disorders as Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis. What is more, venomous arthropods such as scorpions, bees, wasps, spiders, ants, centipedes, snail, beetles, and caterpillars. The venoms and toxins from these arthropods provide a promising source of natural bioactive compounds which can be employed in the development of new drugs to treat diseases as cancer. The possibility of using these active molecules in biotechnological processes can

  11. Genetic basis of the sterile insect technique

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Robinson, A.S.

    2005-01-01

    The use of the sterile insect technique (SIT) for insect control relies on the introduction of sterility in the females of the wild population. This sterility is produced following the mating of these females with released males carrying, in their sperm, dominant lethal mutations that have been induced by ionizing radiation. The reasons why the SIT can only be effective when the induced sterility in the released males is in the form of dominant lethal mutations, and not some form of sperm inactivation, are discussed, together with the relationship of dominant lethal mutations to dose, sex, developmental stage and the particular species. The combination of genetic sterility with that induced by radiation is also discussed in relation to the use of genetic sexing strains of the Mediterranean fruit fly Ceratitis capitata (Wiedemann) in area-wide integrated pest management (AW-IPM) programmes that integrate the SIT. A case is made to lower the radiation dose used in such programmes so as to produce a more competitive sterile insect. Increased competitiveness can also be achieved by using different radiation environments. As well as radiation-induced sterility, natural mechanisms can be recruited, especially the use of hybrid sterility exemplified by a successful field trial with tsetse flies Glossina spp. in the 1940s. Genetic transformation will make some impact on the SIT, especially regarding the introduction of markers for released flies, and the construction of genetic sexing strains. It is concluded that using a physical process, such as radiation, will always have significant advantages over genetic and other methods of sterilization for the large-scale application of the SIT. (author)

  12. In vivo evaluation of insect wax for hair growth potential

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Jinju

    2018-01-01

    Insect wax is secreted by Ericerus pela Chavanness. It has been traditionally used to treat hair loss in China, but few reports have been published on the hair growth-promoting effect of insect wax. In this work, we examined the hair growth-promoting effects of insect wax on model animals. Different concentrations of insect wax were topically applied to the denuded backs of mice, and 5% minoxidil was applied topically as a positive control. We found that insect wax significantly promoted hair growth in a dose-dependent manner, 45% and 30% insect wax both induced hair to regrow, while less visible hair growth was observed in blank controls on the 16th day. The experimental areas treated with 45% and 30% insect wax exhibited significant differences in hair scores compared to blank controls, and hair lengths in the 45% and 30% insect wax group was significantly longer than in blank controls on the 16th and 20th days. There were no new hair follicles forming in the treated areas, and the hair follicles were prematurely converted to the anagen phase from the telogen phase in experimental areas treated with 45% and 30% insect wax. Both 45% and 30% insect wax upregulated vascular endothelial growth factor expression. The results indicated that 45% and 30% insect wax showed hair growth-promoting potential approximately as potent as 5% minoxidil by inducing the premature conversion of telogen-to-anagen and by prolonging the mature anagen phase rather than increasing the number of hair follicles, which was likely related to the upregulation of VEGF expression. The dissociative policosanol in insect wax was considered the key ingredient most likely responsible for the hair growth promoting potential. PMID:29438422

  13. Biocontrol: The Potential of Entomophilic Nematodes in Insect Management

    OpenAIRE

    Webster, John M.

    1980-01-01

    A review of the development of entomophilic nematology and a commentary on the potential of entomophilic nematodes in controlling insect pests. The paper considers some of the major contributions to our knowledge of entomophilic nematology; factors involved in insect pest management and how they are applicable to the use of nematodes; nematodes which are most promising as biological control agents; and problems to be solved to facilitate the use of entomophilic nematodes in insect management.

  14. In vivo evaluation of insect wax for hair growth potential.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jinju Ma

    Full Text Available Insect wax is secreted by Ericerus pela Chavanness. It has been traditionally used to treat hair loss in China, but few reports have been published on the hair growth-promoting effect of insect wax. In this work, we examined the hair growth-promoting effects of insect wax on model animals. Different concentrations of insect wax were topically applied to the denuded backs of mice, and 5% minoxidil was applied topically as a positive control. We found that insect wax significantly promoted hair growth in a dose-dependent manner, 45% and 30% insect wax both induced hair to regrow, while less visible hair growth was observed in blank controls on the 16th day. The experimental areas treated with 45% and 30% insect wax exhibited significant differences in hair scores compared to blank controls, and hair lengths in the 45% and 30% insect wax group was significantly longer than in blank controls on the 16th and 20th days. There were no new hair follicles forming in the treated areas, and the hair follicles were prematurely converted to the anagen phase from the telogen phase in experimental areas treated with 45% and 30% insect wax. Both 45% and 30% insect wax upregulated vascular endothelial growth factor expression. The results indicated that 45% and 30% insect wax showed hair growth-promoting potential approximately as potent as 5% minoxidil by inducing the premature conversion of telogen-to-anagen and by prolonging the mature anagen phase rather than increasing the number of hair follicles, which was likely related to the upregulation of VEGF expression. The dissociative policosanol in insect wax was considered the key ingredient most likely responsible for the hair growth promoting potential.

  15. Nocturnal insects use optic flow for flight control

    OpenAIRE

    Baird, Emily; Kreiss, Eva; Wcislo, William; Warrant, Eric; Dacke, Marie

    2011-01-01

    To avoid collisions when navigating through cluttered environments, flying insects must control their flight so that their sensory systems have time to detect obstacles and avoid them. To do this, day-active insects rely primarily on the pattern of apparent motion generated on the retina during flight (optic flow). However, many flying insects are active at night, when obtaining reliable visual information for flight control presents much more of a challenge. To assess whether nocturnal flyin...

  16. Ecosystem Services from Edible Insects in Agricultural Systems: A Review

    OpenAIRE

    Payne, Charlotte L. R.; Van Itterbeeck, Joost

    2017-01-01

    Many of the most nutritionally and economically important edible insects are those that are harvested from existing agricultural systems. Current strategies of agricultural intensification focus predominantly on increasing crop yields, with no or little consideration of the repercussions this may have for the additional harvest and ecology of accompanying food insects. Yet such insects provide many valuable ecosystem services, and their sustainable management could be crucial to ensuring futu...

  17. RNA Interference in Insect Vectors for Plant Viruses

    OpenAIRE

    Kanakala, Surapathrudu; Ghanim, Murad

    2016-01-01

    Insects and other arthropods are the most important vectors of plant pathogens. The majority of plant pathogens are disseminated by arthropod vectors such as aphids, beetles, leafhoppers, planthoppers, thrips and whiteflies. Transmission of plant pathogens and the challenges in managing insect vectors due to insecticide resistance are factors that contribute to major food losses in agriculture. RNA interference (RNAi) was recently suggested as a promising strategy for controlling insect pests...

  18. The many selves of social insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Queller, David C; Strassmann, Joan E

    2002-04-12

    Social insects show multiple levels of self identity. Most individuals are sterile workers who selflessly labor for their colony, which is often viewed as a superorganism. The superorganism protects itself with colony recognition systems based on learned odors, typically cuticular hydrocarbons. Transfer of these odors within the colony obscures separate clan identities. Residual individual interests do appear to cause conflicts within colonies over sex ratio, male production, caste, and reproductive dominance. However, genomic imprinting theory predicts that the individual's maternal and paternal genes will evolve separate infraorganismal identities, perhaps leaving virtually no coherent individual identity.

  19. Environment and the sterile insect technique

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nagel, P.; Peveling, R.

    2005-01-01

    The sterile insect technique (SIT) is an exceptionally promising pest control method in terms of efficacy and environmental compatibility. Assessments of environmental risks vary according to the status and origin of the target pests. The suppression or eradication of exotic pest populations with the SIT raises few environmental concerns, and these are related mainly to pre-release suppression techniques. However, the elimination of native species, or at least populations of native species, requires more detailed and complex assessments of ecological effects and consequences for biodiversity conservation. Eradication programmes provide opportunities to study these topics within the scope of both environmental impact assessments and operational monitoring programmes. (author)

  20. Chemical ecology of insects and tritrophic interactions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ahmad, F.; Aslam, M.; Razaq, M.

    2004-01-01

    This paper reviews the chemical ecology of insects to explain the role of semiochemicals in plant-herbivore, herbivore-carnivore and plant-carnivore interactions. The semiochemical, mediating tritrophic interactions may be produced by plants, herbivores or their natural enemies (carnivores). Some semiochemicals attract the herbivores and carnivores and mediate interaction among them, while on the other hand some repel them. The semiochemicals are used by heribivores, parasites and predators as cues to locate food, host or prey. The same chemicals are also used for defensive purpose by some herbivores against their natural enemies as they are sequestered through their bodies. (author)