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Journal of Insect Physiology

Julien Fumey, Claude Wicker-Thomas
Mutations at the Darkener of Apricot (Doa) locus of Drosophila melanogaster alter sexual differentiation by disrupting sex-specific splicing of doublesex pre-mRNA, a key regulator of sex determination. Here, we study the effect of seven Doa alleles and several trans-heterozygous combinations on pheromones and courtship behavior. The cuticular hydrocarbon (CHC) profile was slightly masculinized in females, with an accumulation of shorter compounds (C23 and C25) and a reduction in longer compounds (C27 and C29)...
January 11, 2017: Journal of Insect Physiology
Enikő Csata, Abel Bernadou, Elena Rákosy-Tican, Jürgen Heinze, Bálint Markó
Parasite infection often results in alterations in host behaviour. These changes vary greatly in their magnitude, from slight shifts in the time spent by the host performing a given activity to the appearance of novel behaviours. The effects of parasites can differ with the age and the physiological condition of the host. Rickia wasmannii is an ectoparasitic fungal symbiont in Myrmica ants that covers the whole body surface of the host and reduces its lifespan. The fungus is present in both young and old individuals, making it an optimal subject for the study of age-related parasitic effects...
January 9, 2017: Journal of Insect Physiology
Hugo Baglan, Claudio Lazzari, Fernando Guerrieri
In spite of the mosquito Aedes aegypti being a vector of several infectious diseases, a limited number of studies has been undertaken on learning in this species. Moreover, larval stages have been neglected as model organisms, although they are active, aquatic and perform stereotyped behavioural responses, e.g. the escape response when disturbed. To study the learning abilities of mosquito larvae, we focused on habituation, a form of non-associative learning widely studied in vertebrates and invertebrates. Habituation was defined as the progressive and reversible decrease in response to a reiterative stimulus...
January 7, 2017: Journal of Insect Physiology
Daniel K Hasegawa, Stephanie L Erickson, Bradley M Hersh, Matthew W Turnbull
Polydnaviruses are dsDNA viruses that induce immune and developmental alterations in their caterpillar hosts. Characterization of polydnavirus gene families and family members is necessary to understand mechanisms of pathology and evolution of these viruses, and may aid to elucidate the role of host homologues if present. For example, the polydnavirus vinnexin gene family encodes homologues of insect gap junction genes (innexins) that are expressed in host immune cells (hemocytes). While the roles of Innexin proteins and gap junctions in insect immunity are largely unclear, we previously demonstrated that Vinnexins form functional gap junctions and alter the junctional characteristics of a host Innexin when co-expressed in paired Xenopus oocytes...
January 7, 2017: Journal of Insect Physiology
Ji-Chong Zhuo, Jian Xue, Jia-Bao Lu, Hai-Jian Huang, Hai-Jun Xu, Chuan-Xi Zhang
The target gene of rapamycin (TOR) is conserved from invertebrates to vertebrates, and plays critical roles in cell growth, nutrient sensing, lifespan and reproduction. In this paper, we employed RNA interference (RNAi) to study the function of TOR in male brown planthoppers (BPH), Nilaparvata lugens. Here we discovered that no offspring was produced when wildtype females BPH mated with NlTOR RNAi males. To understand the influence of NlTOR on male BPH infertility, we dissected the reproductive system of a NlTOR RNAi male, and found that the testes were normal and the seminal vesicles were full of sperm, while the accessory gland was poorly developed after knocking down NlTOR expression...
January 7, 2017: Journal of Insect Physiology
Yang Sun, Shuijin Huang, Shuping Wang, Dianhao Guo, Chang Ge, Huamei Xiao, Wencai Jie, Qiupu Yang, Xiaolu Teng, Fei Li
Insects undergo metamorphosis, involving an abrupt change in body structure through cell growth and differentiation. Rice stem stripped borer (SSB), Chilo suppressalis, is one of the most destructive rice pests. However, little is known about the regulation mechanism of metamorphosis development in this notorious insect pest. Here, we studied the expression of 22,197 SSB genes at seven time points during pupa development with a customized microarray, identifying 622 differentially expressed genes (DEG) during pupa development...
December 29, 2016: Journal of Insect Physiology
M Lukas Seehausen, Michel Cusson, Jacques Régnière, Maxence Bory, Don Stewart, Abdelmadjid Djoumad, Sandy M Smith, Véronique Martel
Endoparasitoids face the challenge of overcoming the immune reaction of their hosts, which typically consists of encapsulation and melanisation of parasitoid eggs or larvae. Some endoparasitic wasps such as the solitary Tranosema rostrale (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae) that lay their eggs in larvae of the spruce budworm, Choristoneura fumiferana (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae), have evolved a symbiotic relationship with a polydnavirus (PDV), which in turn helps them suppress the host's immune response. We observed an increase in mortality of immature T...
December 29, 2016: Journal of Insect Physiology
Liu Yang, David L Denlinger, Peter M Piermarini
Adult females of the mosquito Culex pipiens entering diapause increase sugar water ingestion and reduce evaporative water loss, but how these attributes of the diapause program impact activity of the renal excretory system remains unknown. Here we compared the renal excretory capacity of diapausing and non-diapausing females, as well as the molecular expression of aquaporin (AQP) genes that encode channels involved in transporting water and/or small metabolites. Baseline urine excretion rates in diapausing mosquitoes were higher than in those of their non-diapausing counterparts, possibly a consequence of the intense sugar feeding associated with diapause...
December 27, 2016: Journal of Insect Physiology
Xiangdong Yuan, Man Zhao, Jizhen Wei, Wanna Zhang, Bingjie Wang, Myint Myint Khaing, Gemei Liang
Cry1A and Cry2A toxins, which are widely used in Bt transgenic crops, can specifically bind to insect midguts and exert their insecticidal effects. There are interactions between insect midgut-binding proteins and Cry1A toxins; however, little is known about the insect protein that specifically binds to Cry2A. Midgut membrane-bound alkaline phosphatases (ALPs), which are important for the binding of proteins to Cry1A, play dominant roles in Cry1A-mediated toxicity in some lepidopteran larvae. In this study, we cloned and expressed one partial ALP2 peptide from susceptible Spodoptera exigua larvae and studied the binding characteristics of SeALP2 with Cry2Aa...
December 27, 2016: Journal of Insect Physiology
Tanya M Haupt, Brent J Sinclair, Steven L Chown
Physiological ecologists have long assumed that thermoregulatory behaviour will evolve to optimise physiological performance. The coadaptation hypothesis predicts that an animal's preferred body temperature will correspond to the temperature at which its performance is optimal. Here we use a strong inference approach to examine the relationship between thermal preference and locomotor performance in the caterpillars of a wingless sub-Antarctic moth, Pringleophaga marioni Viette (Tineidae). The coadaptation hypothesis and its alternatives (suboptimal is optimal, thermodynamic effect, trait variation) are tested...
December 27, 2016: Journal of Insect Physiology
Jeffrey A Harvey, Tijl A Essens, Rutger A Las, Cindy van Veen, Bertanne Visser, Jacintha Ellers, Robin Heinen, Rieta Gols
Adult dietary regimes in insects may affect egg production, fecundity and ultimately fitness. This is especially relevant in parasitoid wasps where many species serve as important biological control agents of agricultural pests. Here, we tested the effect of honey and sugar diets on daily fecundity schedules, lifetime reproductive success and longevity in four species of parasitoid wasps when reared on their respective hosts. The parasitoid species were selected based on dichotomies in host usage strategies and reproductive traits...
December 23, 2016: Journal of Insect Physiology
Gina Pontes, Marcos H Pereira, Romina B Barrozo
Salts are necessary for maintaining homeostatic conditions within the body of all living organisms. Like with all essential nutrients, deficient or excessive ingestion of salts can result in adverse health effects. The taste system is a primary sensory modality that helps animals to make adequate feeding decisions in terms of salt consumption. In this work we show that sodium and potassium chloride salts modulate the feeding behavior of Rhodnius prolixus in a concentration-dependent manner. Feeding is only triggered by an optimal concentration of any of these salts (0...
December 15, 2016: Journal of Insect Physiology
Carmen Rolandi, Pablo E Schilman
Females of the haematophagous bug Rhodnius prolixus attach their eggs in clusters on substrates related to their hosts, such as nests or avian feathers. Because the hosts are an enormous food resource as well as potential predators, the choice of the site and pattern of oviposition could have an important adaptive value. Here we investigated proximate and a potential ultimate cause of this aggregated pattern of laid eggs. First, we studied proximal causes by analyzing the use of chemical or physical cues associated with aggregated oviposition in R...
December 8, 2016: Journal of Insect Physiology
J A Carbonell, D T Bilton, P Calosi, A Millán, A Stewart, J Velasco
Ongoing climate change is driving dramatic range shifts in diverse taxa worldwide, and species responses to global change are likely to be determined largely by population responses at geographical range margins. Here we investigate the metabolic and reproductive plasticity in response to water temperature and salinity variation of two populations of the eurythermic saline water bug Sigara selecta: one population located close to the northern edge of its distribution, in a relatively cold, thermally stable region (SE England - 'marginal'), and one close to the range centre, in a warmer and more thermally variable Mediterranean climate (SE Spain - 'core')...
November 30, 2016: Journal of Insect Physiology
Tejinder Singh Chechi, Zeeshan Ali Syed, Nagaraj Guru Prasad
Sperm competition theory predicts that with increase in sperm competition, males either invest more in reproductive organ(s) and/or improve ejaculate investment. We test this idea using experimental evolution in Drosophila melanogaster. We maintained replicate populations of Drosophila melanogaster under male (M) and female (F) biased sex ratio regimes for more than a hundred generations with the result that males from the M regime evolved higher sperm competitive abilities relative to males from the F regime...
November 29, 2016: Journal of Insect Physiology
Hans C Kelstrup, Klaus Hartfelder, Nanike Esterhuizen, Theresa C Wossler
The prevailing paradigm for social wasp endocrinology is that of juvenile hormone (JH) functioning pleiotropically in potential and actual queens, where it fuels dominance behaviors, stimulates ovarian growth and/or affects the production of status-linked cuticular compounds. In colonies with annual cycles (e.g., temperate-zone species), female adults produced at the end of the summer (called gynes) are physiologically primed to hibernate. Despite the absence of egg-laying in the pre-overwintering phase, gynes engage in dominance interactions that may affect reproductive potential following hibernation...
November 29, 2016: Journal of Insect Physiology
Célia Bordier, Séverine Suchail, Maryline Pioz, Jean Marc Devaud, Claude Collet, Mercedes Charreton, Yves Le Conte, Cédric Alaux
In a rapidly changing environment, honeybee colonies are increasingly exposed to diverse sources of stress (e.g., new parasites, pesticides, climate warming), which represent a challenge to individual and social homeostasis. However, bee physiological responses to stress remain poorly understood. We therefore exposed bees specialised in different tasks (nurses, guards and foragers) to ancient (immune and heat stress) or historically more recent sources of stress (pesticides), and we determined changes in the expression of genes linked to behavioural maturation (vitellogenin - vg and juvenile hormone esterase - jhe) as well as in energetic metabolism (glycogen level, expression level of the receptor to the adipokinetic hormone - akhr, and endothermic performance)...
November 28, 2016: Journal of Insect Physiology
Yuta Shimizu, Ayumu Mukai, Shin G Goto
Insects enter diapause to synchronise their life cycle with biotic and abiotic environmental conditions favourable for their development, reproduction, and survival. One of the most noticeable characteristics of diapause is the blockage of ontogeny. Although this blockage should occur with the cessation of cellular proliferation, i.e. cell cycle arrest, it was confirmed only in a few insect species and information on the molecular pathways involved in cell cycle arrest is limited. In the present study, we investigated developmental and cell cycle arrest in diapause larvae of the jewel wasp Nasonia vitripennis...
November 26, 2016: Journal of Insect Physiology
Freddy Ibanez, Julien Levy, Cecilia Tamborindeguy
The potato psyllid, Bactericera cockerelli (Šulc) (Hemiptera: Triozidae), is a phloem-feeding insect with preference for Solanaceae. This insect species is vector of the pathogenic bacteria 'Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum' the causative agent of zebra chip, an important disease of commercial potatoes in several countries worldwide. The recent classification of psyllids among the most dangerous vectors has promoted their study, but still many biological processes such as reproduction and vitellogenesis need to be investigated...
November 25, 2016: Journal of Insect Physiology
Carole Labrousse, Claudio R Lazzari, Nadine Fresquet
Triatominae are blood-sucking insects that localise their hosts using a range of sensory signals to find food, and among them, the heat emitted by the hosts. Heat is one of the main short-range cues in vertebrate hosts, able to trigger alone the Proboscis Extension Response (PER) that precedes the bite. Previous studies demonstrated that heat responsiveness of fifth-instar nymphs is maximum to moderate temperatures (30-35°C) compatible with those of their vertebrate host's body surface. This study investigated whether this thermal preference for biting is maintained along the life cycle of R...
November 24, 2016: Journal of Insect Physiology
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