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https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28076409/an-efficient-antioxidant-system-in-a-long-lived-termite-queen
#1
Eisuke Tasaki, Kazuya Kobayashi, Kenji Matsuura, Yoshihito Iuchi
The trade-off between reproduction and longevity is known in wide variety of animals. Social insect queens are rare organisms that can achieve a long lifespan without sacrificing fecundity. The extended longevity of social insect queens, which contradicts the trade-off, has attracted much attention because it implies the existence of an extraordinary anti-aging mechanism. Here, we show that queens of the termite Reticulitermes speratus incur significantly lower oxidative damage to DNA, protein and lipid and have higher activity of antioxidant enzymes than non-reproductive individuals (workers and soldiers)...
2017: PloS One
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28057830/individual-versus-collective-cognition-in-social-insects
#2
REVIEW
Ofer Feinerman, Amos Korman
The concerted responses of eusocial insects to environmental stimuli are often referred to as collective cognition at the level of the colony. To achieve collective cognition, a group can draw on two different sources: individual cognition and the connectivity between individuals. Computation in neural networks, for example, is attributed more to sophisticated communication schemes than to the complexity of individual neurons. The case of social insects, however, can be expected to differ. This is because individual insects are cognitively capable units that are often able to process information that is directly relevant at the level of the colony...
January 1, 2017: Journal of Experimental Biology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28057824/the-ecology-and-evolution-of-social-behavior-in-microbes
#3
REVIEW
Corina E Tarnita
Cooperation has been studied extensively across the tree of life, from eusociality in insects to social behavior in humans, but it is only recently that a social dimension has been recognized and extensively explored for microbes. Research into microbial cooperation has accelerated dramatically and microbes have become a favorite system because of their fast evolution, their convenience as lab study systems and the opportunity for molecular investigations. However, the study of microbes also poses significant challenges, such as a lack of knowledge and an inaccessibility of the ecological context (used here to include both the abiotic and the biotic environment) under which the trait deemed cooperative has evolved and is maintained...
January 1, 2017: Journal of Experimental Biology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28053060/caste-biased-gene-expression-in-a-facultatively-eusocial-bee-suggests-a-role-for-genetic-accommodation-in-the-evolution-of-eusociality
#4
Beryl M Jones, Callum J Kingwell, William T Wcislo, Gene E Robinson
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...
January 11, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28036149/social-dominance-alters-nutrition-related-gene-expression-immediately-transcriptomic-evidence-from-a-monomorphic-queenless-ant
#5
Yasukazu Okada, Yutaka Watanabe, Mandy M Y Tin, Kazuki Tsuji, Alexander S Mikheyev
Queen-worker differentiation in eusocial organisms may have originated from decoupling of maternal care and reproductive behaviors. Recent advances in sequencing techniques have begun to elucidate the molecular basis of queen-worker differentiation. However, current knowledge of the molecular basis of caste differentiation is limited, especially to species with morphological castes. It seems likely that at the dawn of eusociality morphologically undifferentiated, monomorphic females underwent physiological differentiation that yielded egg-laying and caretaking castes...
December 30, 2016: Molecular Ecology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28035273/does-cooperation-mean-kinship-between-spatially-discrete-ant-nests
#6
Duncan S Procter, Joan E Cottrell, Kevin Watts, Stuart W A'Hara, Michael Hofreiter, Elva J H Robinson
Eusociality is one of the most complex forms of social organization, characterized by cooperative and reproductive units termed colonies. Altruistic behavior of workers within colonies is explained by inclusive fitness, with indirect fitness benefits accrued by helping kin. Members of a social insect colony are expected to be more closely related to one another than they are to other conspecifics. In many social insects, the colony can extend to multiple socially connected but spatially separate nests (polydomy)...
December 2016: Ecology and Evolution
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28025279/evolution-of-dna-methylation-across-insects
#7
Adam J Bewick, Kevin J Vogel, Allen J Moore, Robert J Schmitz
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...
December 25, 2016: Molecular Biology and Evolution
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28018658/lack-of-aggression-and-apparent-altruism-towards-intruders-in-a-primitive-termite
#8
Feargus Cooney, Emma I K Vitikainen, Harry H Marshall, Wilmie van Rooyen, Robert L Smith, Michael A Cant, Nicole Goodey
In eusocial insects, the ability to discriminate nest-mates from non-nest-mates is widespread and ensures that altruistic actions are directed towards kin and agonistic actions are directed towards non-relatives. Most tests of nest-mate recognition have focused on hymenopterans, and suggest that cooperation typically evolves in tandem with strong antagonism towards non-nest-mates. Here, we present evidence from a phylogenetically and behaviourally basal termite species that workers discriminate members of foreign colonies...
November 2016: Royal Society Open Science
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28012167/digest-evolve-wisely-some-ant-defense-strategies-paved-way-to-diversification-and-others-to-a-dead-end
#9
Jeremy Rehm
From trees in the Amazon to the scorching sands of the Sahara, over 12,000 ant species march in their traffic-jammed highways between home and their next meal. The global success of ants stems partially from being the first eusocial predatory insects to live primarily on the ground, distributing responsibilities among castes to keep their complex societies running (Wilson 1987). Additionally, the evolution of the metapleural gland, which secretes a fungicide and bactericide acid, likely facilitated their success in sub-terrestrial habitats (Hölldobler and Wilson 1990)...
December 24, 2016: Evolution; International Journal of Organic Evolution
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27987525/the-evolution-of-cooperation-by-negotiation-in-a-noisy-world
#10
Koichi Ito, John M McNamara, Atsushi Yamauchi, Andrew D Higginson
Cooperative interactions among individuals are ubiquitous despite the possibility of exploitation by selfish free-riders. One mechanism that may promote cooperation is "negotiation": individuals altering their behaviour in response to the behaviour of others. Negotiating individuals decide their actions through a recursive process of reciprocal observation, thereby reducing the possibility of free-riding. Evolutionary games with response rules have shown that infinitely many forms of the rule can be evolutionarily stable simultaneously, unless there is variation in individual quality...
December 17, 2016: Journal of Evolutionary Biology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27974493/variation-in-growth-of-damaraland-mole-rats-is-explained-by-competition-rather-than-by-functional-specialization-for-different-tasks
#11
Markus Zöttl, Jack Thorley, David Gaynor, Nigel C Bennett, Tim Clutton-Brock
In some eusocial insect societies, adaptation to the division of labour results in multimodal size variation among workers. It has been suggested that variation in size and growth among non-breeders in naked and Damaraland mole-rats may similarly reflect functional divergence associated with different cooperative tasks. However, it is unclear whether individual growth rates are multimodally distributed (as would be expected if variation in growth is associated with specialization for different tasks) or whether variation in growth is unimodally distributed, and is related to differences in the social and physical environment (as would be predicted if there are individual differences in growth but no discrete differences in developmental pathways)...
December 2016: Biology Letters
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27932998/gene-expression-dynamics-in-major-endocrine-regulatory-pathways-along-the-transition-from-solitary-to-social-life-in-a-bumblebee-bombus-terrestris
#12
Pavel Jedlička, Ulrich R Ernst, Alena Votavová, Robert Hanus, Irena Valterová
Understanding the social evolution leading to insect eusociality requires, among other, a detailed insight into endocrine regulatory mechanisms that have been co-opted from solitary ancestors to play new roles in the complex life histories of eusocial species. Bumblebees represent well-suited models of a relatively primitive social organization standing on the mid-way to highly advanced eusociality and their queens undergo both, a solitary and a social phase, separated by winter diapause. In the present paper, we characterize the gene expression levels of major endocrine regulatory pathways across tissues, sexes, and life-stages of the buff-tailed bumblebee, Bombus terrestris, with special emphasis on critical stages of the queen's transition from solitary to social life...
2016: Frontiers in Physiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27929066/evidence-for-social-parasitism-of-early-insect-societies-by-cretaceous-rove-beetles
#13
Shûhei Yamamoto, Munetoshi Maruyama, Joseph Parker
The evolution of eusociality in ants and termites propelled both insect groups to their modern ecological dominance. Yet, eusociality also fostered the evolution of social parasitism-an adverse symbiosis, in which the superorganismal colonies formed by these insects are infiltrated by a profusion of invertebrate species that target nest resources. Predominant among these are the aleocharine rove beetles (Staphylinidae), a vast and ecologically diverse subfamily with numerous morphologically and behaviourally specialized socially parasitic lineages...
December 8, 2016: Nature Communications
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27922127/variability-of-space-use-patterns-in-a-free-living-eusocial-rodent-ansell-s-mole-rat-indicates-age-based-rather-than-caste-polyethism
#14
Jan Šklíba, Matěj Lövy, Hynek Burda, Radim Šumbera
Eusocial species of African mole-rats live in groups cooperating on multiple tasks and employing division of labour. In captivity, individuals of the same group differ in cooperative contribution as well as in preference for a particular task. Both can be viewed as polyethism. However, little information is available from free-ranging mole-rats, which live in large burrow systems. We made an attempt to detect polyethism in the free-living Ansell's mole-rat (Fukomys anselli) as differences in individuals' space-use patterns...
December 6, 2016: Scientific Reports
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27912247/molecular-evolution-in-insect-societies-an-eco-evo-devo-synthesis
#15
Amy L Toth, Sandra M Rehan
The evolution of eusociality is a perennial issue in evolutionary biology, and genomic advances have fueled steadily growing interest in the genetic changes underlying social evolution. Along with a recent flurry of research on comparative and evolutionary genomics in different eusocial insect groups (bees, ants, wasps, and termites), several mechanistic explanations have emerged to describe the molecular evolution of eusociality from solitary behavior. These include solitary physiological ground plans, genetic toolkits of deeply conserved genes, evolutionary changes in protein-coding genes, cis regulation, and the structure of gene networks, epigenetics, and novel genes...
November 28, 2016: Annual Review of Entomology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27909951/contrasting-patterns-in-solitary-and-eusocial-bees-while-responding-to-landscape-features-in-the-brazilian-cerrado-a-multiscaled-perspective
#16
D P Silva, D S Nogueira, P De Marco
Landscape structure is an important determinant of biological fluxes and species composition, but species do not respond equally to landscape features or spatial extents. Evaluating "multi-scale" responses of species to landscape structure is an important framework to be considered, allowing insights about habitat requirements for different groups. We evaluated the response of Brazilian Cerrado's bees (eusocial vs. solitary ones) to both the amount and isolation of remnant vegetation in eight nested multiple-local scales...
December 1, 2016: Neotropical Entomology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27887862/report-on-the-microbiota-of-melipona-quadrifasciata-affected-by-a-recurrent-disease
#17
Sebastián Díaz, Sarah de Souza Urbano, Lílian Caesar, Betina Blochtein, Aroni Sattler, Valmir Zuge, Karen Luisa Haag
Melipona quadrifasciata is an eusocial stingless bee traditionally used for honey production in Brazil. In the last decades, the species disappeared from the wild in Southern Brazil, being kept exclusively in managed colonies for commercial and recreational purposes. Stingless beekeepers from this region report annual losses of their colonies due to a syndrome of yet unknown causes. We investigate whether it is associated to pathogenic microorganisms already known to cause disease in bees. These results provide a starting point for future studies aimed at clarifying the relationship between the microbial community of stingless bees and their colony collapses...
November 23, 2016: Journal of Invertebrate Pathology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27886144/cuticular-lipids-as-a-cross-talk-among-ants-plants-and-butterflies
#18
REVIEW
Francesca Barbero
Even though insects and plants are distantly related organisms, they developed an integument which is functionally and structurally similar. Besides functioning as a physical barrier to cope with abiotic and biotic stress, this interface, called cuticle, is also a source of chemical signaling. Crucial compounds with this respect are surface lipids and especially cuticular hydrocarbons (CHCs). This review is focused on the role of CHCs in fostering multilevel relationships among ants, plants and Lepidoptera (primarily butterflies)...
November 24, 2016: International Journal of Molecular Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27878068/genome-methylation-patterns-across-castes-and-generations-in-a-parasitoid-wasp
#19
Roei Shaham, Rachel Ben-Shlomo, Uzi Motro, Tamar Keasar
Environmental influences shape phenotypes within and across generations, often through DNA methylations that modify gene expression. Methylations were proposed to mediate caste and task allocation in some eusocial insects, but how an insect's environment affects DNA methylation in its offspring is yet unknown. We characterized parental effects on methylation profiles in the polyembryonic parasitoid wasp Copidosoma koehleri, as well as methylation patterns associated with its simple caste system. We used methylation-sensitive amplified fragment length polymorphism (MS-AFLP) to compare methylation patterns, among (1) reproductive and soldier larvae; and (2) offspring (larvae, pupae, and adults) of wasps that were reared at either high or low larval density and mated in the four possible combinations...
November 2016: Ecology and Evolution
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27865886/social-regulation-of-ageing-by-young-workers-in-the-honey-bee-apis-mellifera
#20
Michael Eyer, Benjamin Dainat, Peter Neumann, Vincent Dietemann
Organisms' lifespans are modulated by both genetic and environmental factors. The lifespan of eusocial insects is determined by features of the division of labor, which itself is influenced by social regulatory mechanisms. In the honey bee, Apis mellifera, the presence of brood and of old workers carrying out foraging tasks are important social drivers of ageing, but the influence of young adult workers is unknown, as it has not been experimentally teased apart from that of brood. In this study, we test the role of young workers in the ageing of their nestmates...
January 2017: Experimental Gerontology
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