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Journal of Insect Physiology

Juliette Poidatz, Christophe Bressac, Olivier Bonnard, Denis Thiéry
The population dynamics of annual social hymenoptera such as vespids depend largely on the fertility of the foundresses, which, in turn, is a key factor in the context of biological invasions. The native European hornet Vespa crabro (Vc) and the invasive Asian hornet Vespa velutina (Vv) have generally similar ecological traits, e.g. nesting and feeding habits, although they differ in colony size, which is higher in Vv. Furthermore, in contrast to Vc, Vv is more specialized in its predatory habits, intensively hunting honey bees at the hive...
July 10, 2018: Journal of Insect Physiology
Jieliang Zhao, Mengdi Xu, Youjian Liang, Shaoze Yan, Wendong Niu
The wings of honeybees (Apis mellifera L.) usually produce bending and torsional deformations during flapping wing movement. These deformations endow honeybees with perfect aerodynamic control to escape predators and exploit scattered resources. However, the mechanisms by which honeybee wings recover from large deformations are unclear. This study demonstrates that honeybee wings are super-elastic that they can recover rapidly from one extreme contorted state to their original position. A comparative experiment is conducted to evaluate the difference in super-elastic recovery between attached and detached wings...
July 10, 2018: Journal of Insect Physiology
Alexandra Baron, Béatrice Denis, Claude Wicker-Thomas
Drosophila pheromones are long chain hydrocarbons (CHCs) produced by specialized epidermal cells, the oenocytes. Here we were explored the role of ovaries in CHC regulation. We studied tudor, a grandchildless-like mutation, resulting in progeny without ovaries and three alleles of ovoD, resulting in ovarian defects depending on the strength of the allele. We show here that these mutant flies with no or abnormal ovaries have a decrease in C29 length CHC ratio, balanced by an increase in C23 and C25 length ratio; this effect is dependent on the strength of the mutation...
July 9, 2018: Journal of Insect Physiology
Gloria DeGrandi-Hoffman, Stephanie L Gage, Vanessa Corby-Harris, Mark Carroll, Mona Chambers, Henry Graham, Emily Watkins DeJong, Geoffrey Hidalgo, Samantha Calle, Farida Azzouz-Olden, Charlotte Meador, Lucy Snyder, Nick Ziolkowski
Free-ranging herbivores have yearly life cycles that generate dynamic resource needs. Honey bee colonies also have a yearly life cycle that might generate nutritional requirements that differ between times of brood rearing and colony expansion in the spring and population contraction and preparation for overwintering in the fall. To test this, we analyzed polyfloral mixes of spring and fall pollens to determine if the nutrient composition differed with season. Next, we fed both types of seasonal pollens to bees reared in spring and fall...
July 7, 2018: Journal of Insect Physiology
Andrés Arenas, Flavio Roces
Cues inside the nest provide social insect foragers with information about resources currently exploited that may influence their decisions outside. Leaf-cutting ants harvest leaf fragments that are either further processed as substrate for their symbiotic fungus, or disposed of if unsuitable. We investigated whether Acromyrmex ambiguus foragers develop learned preferences for olfactory cues they experienced either in the fungus or in the waste chamber of the nest. Foragers' olfactory preferences were quantified as a choice between sugared papers disks scented with a novel odor and with the odor experienced in one of the nest compartments, before and after odor addition...
July 4, 2018: Journal of Insect Physiology
Irving J May-Concha, Patricia A Lobbia, Gastón Mougabure-Cueto
The nymphs and adults of Triatoma infestans spend much of their time aggregated among themselves within narrow and dark shelters. The search for a suitable shelter depends in part on the recognition of chemical signals coming from the feces and the cuticle of the other individuals who use the refuge. The aim of this study was determine the possible interaction between the chemical signals associated to the feces and to the cuticle of T. infestans. The results showed that the insects remained significantly more time on the feces that had contact with legs and the feces plus footprints than feces or footprints alone, demonstrating the interaction between evaluated signals...
July 3, 2018: Journal of Insect Physiology
V Zanni, L Değirmenci, D Annoscia, R Scheiner, F Nazzi
The parasitic mite Varroa destructor is regarded as the most important parasite of honey bees and plays a fundamental role in the decline of bee colonies observed in the last decade in the Northern hemisphere. Parasitization has a number of detrimental effects on bees, including reduced nursing, which can have important impacts on colony balance. In this work we investigated at the individual level the causes of this abnormal behavior and found that the reduced nursing activity in mite-infested workers is associated with impaired learning performance and a series of physiological traits that are typical of foragers, including reduced response to brood pheromone, limited development of hypopharyngeal glands and higher juvenile hormone titre in the haemolymph...
June 19, 2018: Journal of Insect Physiology
Dennis Kolosov, Maria Tauqir, Sabitha Rajaruban, Peter M Piermarini, Andrew Donini, Michael J O'Donnell
Classical studies have described in detail the complex and regionalized morphology of the Malpighian tubule (MT) in larval Lepidoptera. Recent studies revealed unusual aspects of ion transport in the Malpighian tubules of the larva of the cabbage looper, Trichoplusia ni. These included: cation reabsorption via secondary cells (SC); coupling of SCs to neighbouring PCs via gap junctions to enable reabsorption; and a reversal from cation secretion to reabsorption by the principal cells in the distal ileac plexus region of the in situ tubule in response to dietary ion loading...
June 14, 2018: Journal of Insect Physiology
Katherine C Crocker, Mark D Hunter
An animal's phenotype may be shaped by its genes, but also reflects its own environment and often that of its parents. Nongenetic parental effects are often mediated by steroid hormones, and operate between parents and offspring through mechanisms that are well described in vertebrate and model systems. However, less is understood about the strength and frequency of hormone mediated nongenetic parental effects across more than one generation of descendants, and in nonmodel systems. Here we show that the concentration of active ecdysteroid hormones provided by a female house cricket (Acheta domesticus) affects the growth rate of her offspring...
June 8, 2018: Journal of Insect Physiology
Suk-Ling Wee, Thelma Peek, Anthony R Clarke
The males of different species of Bactrocera and Zeugodacus fruit flies are commonly attracted to plant-derived phenylpropanoids (e.g. methyl eugenol (ME)) or phenylbutanoids (e.g. raspberry ketone (RK)) but almost never to both. However, one particular plant-derived phenylbutanoid, zingerone (ZN), which possesses an intermediate chemical structure between ME and RK, weakly attracts both ME- and RK-responding fruit fly species. Bactrocera jarvisi, an Australian fruit fly species, is weakly attracted to cue lure (an analogue of RK) but strongly attracted to ZN...
June 8, 2018: Journal of Insect Physiology
André Rodrigues de Souza, Talitta Guimarães Simões, Markus J Rantala, Eduardo Fernando Santos, José Lino-Netto, Fábio Santos do Nascimento
It has been recently suggested that female mate choice, based on sexually selected ornaments, is an important component of social wasps' reproductive biology. The correlates of male ornaments that could be of a female's interest, however, remain to be investigated. Males of the Neotropical paper wasp Polistes simillimus have sexually dimorphic melanin-based black spots on their faces. In this species, male spots work like sexual ornaments, as it has been experimentally demonstrated that females prefer sexual partners with a higher proportion of black pigment on their faces...
June 2, 2018: Journal of Insect Physiology
Joffrey Moiroux, Guy Boivin, Jacques Brodeur
Studying relative investment of resources towards early and delayed reproduction is central to understand life history evolution since these traits are generally negatively correlated and traded-off against several other fitness components. For this purpose, ovigeny index (OI), which is calculated as the fraction of the maximum potential lifetime egg complement that is mature upon female emergence, has been developed in insects. Despite the central role of temperature on life history evolution in ectotherms, its influence on ovigeny index has never been tested...
June 2, 2018: Journal of Insect Physiology
Brett M Saremba, Susan J Murch, Fiona J M Tymm, Mark R Rheault
Cabbage looper (Trichoplusia ni) larvae are generalist herbivores that feed on numerous cultivated plants and weeds including crucifers, other vegetables, flowers, and field crops. Consuming plant material from a wide range of plant species exposes these larvae to a considerable variety of plant secondary metabolites involved in chemical defense against herbivory. The ability of the cabbage looper larvae to detoxify plant secondary metabolites, such as nicotine, has been attributed to the rapid induction of excretion via the Malpighian tubules...
May 31, 2018: Journal of Insect Physiology
Felix A Cervantes, Elaine A Backus
Blue-green sharpshooter, Graphocephala atropunctata, is a native California vector of Xylella fastidiosa (Xf), a foregut-borne bacterium that is the causal agent of Pierce's disease in grapevines. A 3rd-generation, AC-DC electropenetrograph (EPG monitor) was used to record stylet probing and ingestion behaviors of adult G. atropunctata on healthy grapevines. This study presents for the first time a complete, updated waveform library for this species, as well as effects of different electropenetrograph settings and adhesives on waveform appearances...
May 31, 2018: Journal of Insect Physiology
Yang Dai, Meng-Fei Wang, Shou-Lin Jiang, Yi-Fei Zhang, Megha N Parajulee, Fa-Jun Chen
Rising atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2 ) levels can markedly affect the growth, development, reproduction and behavior of herbivorous insects, mainly by changing the primary and secondary metabolites of their host plants. However, little is known about the host-selection behavior and the respective intrinsic mechanism of sap-sucking insects in response to elevated CO2 . In this experiment, the host-selection behavior, as well as the physiological mechanism based on the analysis of growth, development and energy substances, and the expression of the olfactory-related genes of the cotton aphid, Aphis gossypii, were studied under ambient (407...
May 31, 2018: Journal of Insect Physiology
André C Pimentel, Ignacio G Barroso, Jéssica M J Ferreira, Renata O Dias, Clélia Ferreira, Walter R Terra
Until now there is no molecular model of starch digestion and absorption of the resulting glucose molecules along the larval midgut of Musca domestica. For addressing to this, we used RNA-seq analyses from seven sections of the midgut and carcass to evaluate the expression level of the genes coding for amylases, maltases and sugar transporters (SP). An amylase related protein (Amyrel) and two amylase sequences, one soluble and one with a predicted GPI-anchor, were identified. Three highly expressed maltase genes were correlated with biochemically characterized maltases: one soluble, other glycocalyx-associated, and another membrane-bound...
May 24, 2018: Journal of Insect Physiology
Daniela Römer, Martin Bollazzi, Flavio Roces
Social insects show temperature and humidity preferences inside their nests to successfully rear brood. In underground nests, ants also encounter rising CO2 concentrations with increasing depth. It is an open question whether they use CO2 as a cue to decide where to place and tend the brood. Leaf-cutting ants do show CO2 preferences for the culturing of their symbiotic fungus. We evaluated their CO2 choices for brood placement in laboratory experiments. Workers of Acromyrmex lundii in the process of relocating brood were offered a binary choice consisting of two interconnected chambers with different CO2 concentrations...
July 2018: Journal of Insect Physiology
Ting-Ting Chen, Li-Rong Tan, Nan Hu, Zhan-Qi Dong, Zhi-Gang Hu, Ya-Ming Jiang, Peng Chen, Min-Hui Pan, Cheng Lu
Lysozymes is a ubiquitous immune effector that is widely distributed in both vertebrates and invertebrates. Previous reports have shown that lysozymes significantly inhibit viral infections in vertebrates. However, the antiviral effects of lysozymes in invertebrates remain unclear. Here, we investigated the role of lysozymes in Bombyx mori (B. mori) response to viral infection by overexpressing B. mori C-lysozyme (BmC-LZM) in larvae and cells. We found that BmC-LZM was up-regulated in cells in response to viral infection...
July 2018: Journal of Insect Physiology
Juan Pedro Wulff, Natalia Capriotti, Sheila Ons
Ecdysis is a vital process for insects, during which they shed the old cuticle in order to emerge as the following developmental stage. Given its relevance for survival and reproduction, ecdysis is tightly regulated by peptidic hormones that conform an interrelated neuromodulatory network. This network was studied in species that undergo a complete metamorphosis, but not in hemimetabola. In a recent work, we demonstrated that orcokinin neuropeptides are essential for ecdysis to occur in the kissing bug Rhodnius prolixus...
July 2018: Journal of Insect Physiology
Fabien J Démares, Christian W W Pirk, Susan W Nicolson, Hannelie Human
For two decades, neonicotinoid insecticides have been extensively used worldwide. Targeting neuronal receptors, they have deleterious effects on the behaviour and physiology of many insects. Bees are exposed to these insecticides in pollen and nectar while providing pollination services to agricultural crops, and neonicotinoids have been shown to impair navigation and decrease their foraging activity. We have previously reported the effect of dietary thiamethoxam on sucrose responsiveness of young worker bees...
July 2018: Journal of Insect Physiology
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