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Sample records for molecular insect science

  1. Molecular evolutionary analyses of insect societies.

    PubMed

    Fischman, Brielle J; Woodard, S Hollis; Robinson, Gene E

    2011-06-28

    The social insects live in extraordinarily complex and cohesive societies, where many individuals sacrifice their personal reproduction to become helpers in the colony. Identifying adaptive molecular changes involved in eusocial evolution in insects is important for understanding the mechanisms underlying transitions from solitary to social living, as well as the maintenance and elaboration of social life. Here, we review recent advances made in this area of research in several insect groups: the ants, bees, wasps, and termites. Drawing from whole-genome comparisons, candidate gene approaches, and a genome-scale comparative analysis of protein-coding sequence, we highlight novel insights gained for five major biological processes: chemical signaling, brain development and function, immunity, reproduction, and metabolism and nutrition. Lastly, we make comparisons across these diverse approaches and social insect lineages and discuss potential common themes of eusocial evolution, as well as challenges and prospects for future research in the field.

  2. Molecular evolutionary analyses of insect societies

    PubMed Central

    Fischman, Brielle J.; Woodard, S. Hollis; Robinson, Gene E.

    2011-01-01

    The social insects live in extraordinarily complex and cohesive societies, where many individuals sacrifice their personal reproduction to become helpers in the colony. Identifying adaptive molecular changes involved in eusocial evolution in insects is important for understanding the mechanisms underlying transitions from solitary to social living, as well as the maintenance and elaboration of social life. Here, we review recent advances made in this area of research in several insect groups: the ants, bees, wasps, and termites. Drawing from whole-genome comparisons, candidate gene approaches, and a genome-scale comparative analysis of protein-coding sequence, we highlight novel insights gained for five major biological processes: chemical signaling, brain development and function, immunity, reproduction, and metabolism and nutrition. Lastly, we make comparisons across these diverse approaches and social insect lineages and discuss potential common themes of eusocial evolution, as well as challenges and prospects for future research in the field. PMID:21690385

  3. Insect pathogens: molecular approaches and techniques

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This book serves as a primer for molecular techniques in insect pathology and is tailored for a wide scientific audience. Contributing authors are internationally recognized experts. The book comprises four sections: 1) pathogen identification and diagnostics, 2) pathogen population genetics and p...

  4. Molecular basis of odor detection in insects.

    PubMed

    Benton, Richard

    2009-07-01

    Olfactory systems are evolutionarily ancient, underlying the common requirement for all animals to sense and respond to diverse volatile chemical signals in their environment. Odor detection is mediated by odorant receptors (ORs) that, in most olfactory systems, comprise large families of divergent G protein-coupled receptors. Here, I discuss our and others' recent investigations of ORs in the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, which have revealed insights into the distinct evolutionary origin and molecular function of insect ORs. I also describe a bioinformatics strategy that we developed to identify molecules that function with these insect-specific receptors in odor detection.

  5. Molecular marker systems in insects: current trends and future avenues.

    PubMed

    Behura, Susanta K

    2006-10-01

    Insects comprise the largest species composition in the entire animal kingdom and possess a vast undiscovered genetic diversity and gene pool that can be better explored using molecular marker techniques. Current trends of application of DNA marker techniques in diverse domains of insect ecological studies show that mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), microsatellites, random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD), expressed sequence tags (EST) and amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) markers have contributed significantly for progresses towards understanding genetic basis of insect diversity and for mapping medically and agriculturally important genes and quantitative trait loci in insect pests. Apart from these popular marker systems, other novel approaches including transposon display, sequence-specific amplification polymorphism (S-SAP), repeat-associated polymerase chain reaction (PCR) markers have been identified as alternate marker systems in insect studies. Besides, whole genome microarray and single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) assays are becoming more popular to screen genome-wide polymorphisms in fast and cost effective manner. However, use of such methodologies has not gained widespread popularity in entomological studies. The current study highlights the recent trends of applications of molecular markers in insect studies and explores the technological advancements in molecular marker tools and modern high throughput genotyping methodologies that may be applied in entomological researches for better understanding of insect ecology at molecular level.

  6. Molecular Genetics of Beauveria bassiana Infection of Insects.

    PubMed

    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.

  7. External Insect Morphology: A Negative Factor in Attitudes toward Insects and Likelihood of Incorporation in Future Science Education Settings

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    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…

  8. Molecular biology of insect sodium channels and pyrethroid resistance.

    PubMed

    Dong, Ke; Du, Yuzhe; Rinkevich, Frank; Nomura, Yoshiko; Xu, Peng; Wang, Lingxin; Silver, Kristopher; Zhorov, Boris S

    2014-07-01

    Voltage-gated sodium channels are essential for the initiation and propagation of the action potential in neurons and other excitable cells. Because of their critical roles in electrical signaling, sodium channels are targets of a variety of naturally occurring and synthetic neurotoxins, including several classes of insecticides. This review is intended to provide an update on the molecular biology of insect sodium channels and the molecular mechanism of pyrethroid resistance. Although mammalian and insect sodium channels share fundamental topological and functional properties, most insect species carry only one sodium channel gene, compared to multiple sodium channel genes found in each mammalian species. Recent studies showed that two posttranscriptional mechanisms, alternative splicing and RNA editing, are involved in generating functional diversity of sodium channels in insects. More than 50 sodium channel mutations have been identified to be responsible for or associated with knockdown resistance (kdr) to pyrethroids in various arthropod pests and disease vectors. Elucidation of molecular mechanism of kdr led to the identification of dual receptor sites of pyrethroids on insect sodium channels. Many of the kdr mutations appear to be located within or close to the two receptor sites. The accumulating knowledge of insect sodium channels and their interactions with insecticides provides a foundation for understanding the neurophysiology of sodium channels in vivo and the development of new and safer insecticides for effective control of arthropod pests and human disease vectors.

  9. Molecular Biology of Insect Sodium Channels and Pyrethroid Resistance

    PubMed Central

    Dong, Ke; Du, Yuzhe; Rinkevich, Frank; Nomura, Yoshiko; Xu, Peng; Wang, Lingxin; Silver, Kristopher; Zhorov, Boris S.

    2015-01-01

    Voltage-gated sodium channels are essential for the initiation and propagation of the action potential in neurons and other excitable cells. Because of their critical roles in electrical signaling, sodium channels are targets of a variety of naturally occurring and synthetic neurotoxins, including several classes of insecticides. This review is intended to provide an update on the molecular biology of insect sodium channels and the molecular mechanism of pyrethroid resistance. Although mammalian and insect sodium channels share fundamental topological and functional properties, most insect species carry only one sodium channel gene, compared to multiple sodium channel genes found in each mammalian species. Recent studies showed that two posttranscriptional mechanisms, alternative splicing and RNA editing, are involved in generating functional diversity of sodium channels in insects. More than 50 sodium channel mutations have been identified to be responsible for or associated with knockdown resistance (kdr) to pyrethroids in various arthropod pests and disease vectors. Elucidation of molecular mechanism of kdr led to the identification of dual receptor sites of pyrethroids on insect sodium channels. Most of the kdr mutations appear to be located within or close to the two receptor sites. The accumulating knowledge of insect sodium channels and their interactions with insecticides provides a foundation for understanding the neurophysiology of sodium channels in vivo and the development of new and safer insecticides for effective control of arthropod pests and human disease vectors. PMID:24704279

  10. The molecular basis of bacterial-insect symbiosis

    PubMed Central

    Douglas, Angela E.

    2015-01-01

    Insects provide experimentally tractable and cost-effective model systems to investigate the molecular basis of animal-bacterial interactions. Recent research is revealing the central role of the insect innate immune system, especially anti-microbial peptides and reactive oxygen species, in regulating the abundance and composition of the microbiota in various insects, including Drosophila and the mosquitoes Aedes and Anopheles. Interactions between the immune system and microbiota are, however, bidirectional with evidence that members of the resident microbiota can promote immune function, conferring resistance to pathogens and parasites by both activation of immune effectors and production of toxins. Antagonistic and mutualistic interactions among bacteria have also been implicated as determinants of the microbiota composition, including exclusion of pathogens, but the molecular mechanisms are largely unknown. Some bacteria are crucial for insect nutrition, through provisioning of specific nutrients (e.g. B vitamins, essential amino acids) and modulation of the insect nutritional sensing and signaling pathways (e.g. insulin signaling) that regulate nutrient allocation, especially to lipid and other energy reserves. A key challenge for future research is to identify the molecular interaction between specific bacterial effectors and animal receptors, and to determine how these interactions translate into microbiota-dependent signaling, metabolism and immune function in the host. PMID:24735869

  11. The molecular basis of bacterial-insect symbiosis.

    PubMed

    Douglas, Angela E

    2014-11-25

    Insects provide experimentally tractable and cost-effective model systems to investigate the molecular basis of animal-bacterial interactions. Recent research is revealing the central role of the insect innate immune system, especially anti-microbial peptides and reactive oxygen species, in regulating the abundance and composition of the microbiota in various insects, including Drosophila and the mosquitoes Aedes and Anopheles. Interactions between the immune system and microbiota are, however, bidirectional with evidence that members of the resident microbiota can promote immune function, conferring resistance to pathogens and parasites by both activation of immune effectors and production of toxins. Antagonistic and mutualistic interactions among bacteria have also been implicated as determinants of the microbiota composition, including exclusion of pathogens, but the molecular mechanisms are largely unknown. Some bacteria are crucial for insect nutrition, through provisioning of specific nutrients (e.g., B vitamins, essential amino acids) and modulation of the insect nutritional sensing and signaling pathways (e.g., insulin signaling) that regulate nutrient allocation, especially to lipid and other energy reserves. A key challenge for future research is to identify the molecular interaction between specific bacterial effectors and animal receptors, as well as to determine how these interactions translate into microbiota-dependent signaling, metabolism, and immune function in the host.

  12. An insect molecular clock dates the origin of the insects and accords with palaeontological and biogeographic landmarks.

    PubMed

    Gaunt, Michael W; Miles, Michael A

    2002-05-01

    A unified understanding of >390 Myr of insect evolution requires insight into their origin. Molecular clocks are widely applied for evolutionary dating, but clocks for the class Insecta have remained elusive. We now define a robust nucleotide and amino acid mitochondrial molecular clock encompassing five insect orders, including the Blattaria (cockroaches), Orthoptera (crickets and locusts), Hemiptera (true bugs), Diptera, and Lepidoptera (butterflies and moths). Calibration of the clock using one of the earliest, most extensive fossil records for insects (the early ancestors of extant Blattaria) was congruent with all available insect fossils, with biogeographic history, with the Cambrian explosion, and with independent dating estimates from Lepidopteran families. In addition, dates obtained from both nucleotide and amino acid clocks were congruent with each other. Of particular interest to vector biology is the early date of the emergence of triatomine bugs (99.8-93.5 MYA), coincident with the formation of the South American continent during the breakup of Gondwanaland. More generally, we reveal the insects arising from a common ancestor with the Anostraca (fairy shrimps) at around the Silurian-Ordovician boundary (434.2-421.1 MYA) coinciding with the earliest plant megafossil. We explore Tilyard's theory proposing that the terrestrial transition of the aquatic arthropod ancestor to the insects is associated with a particular plant group (early vascular plants). The major output of the study is a comprehensive series of dates for deep-branching points within insect evolution that can act as calibration points for further dating studies within insect families and genera.

  13. Molecular Science Computing: 2010 Greenbook

    SciTech Connect

    De Jong, Wibe A.; Cowley, David E.; Dunning, Thom H.; Vorpagel, Erich R.

    2010-04-02

    This 2010 Greenbook outlines the science drivers for performing integrated computational environmental molecular research at EMSL and defines the next-generation HPC capabilities that must be developed at the MSC to address this critical research. The EMSL MSC Science Panel used EMSL’s vision and science focus and white papers from current and potential future EMSL scientific user communities to define the scientific direction and resulting HPC resource requirements presented in this 2010 Greenbook.

  14. Molecular mechanisms of phenotypic plasticity in social insects

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Polyphenism in insects, whereby a single genome expresses different phenotypes in response to environmental cues, is a fascinating biological phenomenon. Social insects are especially intriguing examples of phenotypic plasticity because division of labor results in the development of extreme morphol...

  15. Molecular determinants of odorant receptor function in insects.

    PubMed

    Ray, Anandasankar; van Naters, Wynand Goes; Carlson, John R

    2014-09-01

    The olfactory system of Drosophila melanogaster provides a powerful model to study molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying function of a sensory system. In the 1970s Siddiqi and colleagues pioneered the application of genetics to olfactory research and isolated several mutant Drosophila with odorant-specific defects in olfactory behaviour, suggesting that odorants are detected differentially by the olfactory system. Since then basic principles of olfactory system function and development have emerged using Drosophila as a model. Nearly four decades later we can add computational methods to further our understanding of how specific odorants are detected by receptors. Using a comparative approach we identify two categories of short amino acid sequence motifs: ones that are conserved family-wide predominantly in the C-terminal half of most receptors, and ones that are present in receptors that detect a specific odorant, 4-methylphenol, found predominantly in the N-terminal half. The odorant-specific sequence motifs are predictors of phenol detection in Anopheles gambiae and other insects, suggesting they are likely to participate in odorant binding. Conversely, the family-wide motifs are expected to participate in shared functions across all receptors and a mutation in the most conserved motif leads to a reduction in odor response. These findings lay a foundation for investigating functional domains within odorant receptors that can lead to a molecular understanding of odor detection.

  16. Educational Materials Development in Primary Science: Insect Identification Kit

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Franks, Frank L.; Huff, Roger

    1976-01-01

    A study was conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of three-dimensional plastic models in teaching 71 visually handicapped students (in grades 1-3) to discriminate major body parts of insects, spiders, and earthworms. (SBH)

  17. Molecular science for drug development and biomedicine.

    PubMed

    Zhong, Wei-Zhu; Zhou, Shu-Feng

    2014-11-04

    With the avalanche of biological sequences generated in the postgenomic age, molecular science is facing an unprecedented challenge, i.e., how to timely utilize the huge amount of data to benefit human beings. Stimulated by such a challenge, a rapid development has taken place in molecular science, particularly in the areas associated with drug development and biomedicine, both experimental and theoretical. The current thematic issue was launched with the focus on the topic of "Molecular Science for Drug Development and Biomedicine", in hopes to further stimulate more useful techniques and findings from various approaches of molecular science for drug development and biomedicine.[...].

  18. Careers; Current Events; Government, U.S.; Insects; Science Experiments; Terrorism, War on.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Web Feet, 2001

    2001-01-01

    This annotated subject guide to Web sites for grades K-8 focuses on careers, current events, government, insects, science experiments, the war on terrorism, and calendar connections for Martin Luther King Day and other January observances. Specific grade levels are indicated for each annotation. (LRW)

  19. The current state of insect molecular systematics: a thriving Tower of Babel.

    PubMed

    Caterino, M S; Cho, S; Sperling, F A

    2000-01-01

    Insect molecular systematics has undergone remarkable recent growth. Advances in methods of data generation and analysis have led to the accumulation of large amounts of DNA sequence data from most major insect groups. In addition to reviewing theoretical and methodological advances, we have compiled information on the taxa and regions sequenced from all available phylogenetic studies of insects. It is evident that investigators have not usually coordinated their efforts. The genes and regions that have been sequenced differ substantially among studies and the whole of our efforts is thus little greater than the sum of its parts. The cytochrome oxidase I, 16S, 18S, and elongation factor-1 alpha genes have been widely used and are informative across a broad range of divergences in insects. We advocate their use as standards for insect phylogenetics. Insect molecular systematics has complemented and enhanced the value of morphological and ecological data, making substantial contributions to evolutionary biology in the process. A more coordinated approach focused on gathering homologous sequence data will greatly facilitate such efforts.

  20. Molecular phylogeny and biogeography of lac insects (Hemiptera: Kerriidae) inferred from nuclear and mitochondrial gene sequences.

    PubMed

    Chen, Hang; Chen, Xiaoming; Feng, Ying; Yang, Hui; He, Rui; Zhang, Wenfeng; Yang, Zixiang

    2013-10-01

    Lac insects are commercial scale insects with high economic value. The combined molecular phylogeny of 20 lac insect populations was generated using elongation factor 1 alpha, mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I and the small subunit ribosomal RNA gene loci. The 20 populations of lac insects clustered into four distinct clades supported by high bootstrap values in maximum parsimony, maximum likelihood and Bayesian analyses. Clade A at the base of the dendrogram comprises Kerria ruralis and two populations of Kerria lacca and is the branch with most primitive species. Clade B includes K. lacca, Kerria sindica and the three populations P, V and Z from India. They clustered with high bootstrap support and have evolved later than those in Clade A. The three unidentified populations P, V and Z exhibited a close relationship with K. lacca and are the same species. In Clade C, three populations of Kerria yunnanensis (Ym, Yj and Yl), population Ys from Thailand and population H from India clustered as a group, in which population H clustered with Ym with 100 % bootstrap in all three analysis methods. In Clade D, Kerria chinensis, Kerria pusana and three populations of K. yunnanensis clustered together with strong support, and are located in the upper branches of the dendrogram and are recently evolved taxa. The majority of populations from the Indian subcontinent clade are more closely related to outgroup taxa from the primitive family Pseudococcidae, as compared to the Eurasian populations. Phylogenetic analysis reveals that the Indian subcontinent is the centre of original of lac insects which have translocated to the Eurasian Continent. Based on the theory of continental drift and existing fossil records, it is suggested that lac insect evolved from ancient scale insects during the late Cretaceous period when the Indian subcontinent drifted towards the Eurasian Continent. Changes in the global environment have impacted on the distribution and evolution of lac

  1. Ultrastructural and molecular characterization of a bacterial symbiosis in the ecologically important scale insect family Coelostomidiidae.

    PubMed

    Dhami, Manpreet K; Turner, Adrian P; Deines, Peter; Beggs, Jacqueline R; Taylor, Michael W

    2012-09-01

    Scale insects are important ecologically and as agricultural pests. The majority of scale insect taxa feed exclusively on plant phloem sap, which is carbon rich but deficient in essential amino acids. This suggests that, as seen in the related aphids and psyllids, scale insect nutrition might also depend upon bacterial symbionts, yet very little is known about scale insect-bacteria symbioses. We report here the first identification and molecular characterization of symbiotic bacteria associated with the New Zealand giant scale Coelostomidia wairoensis, using fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH), transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and 16S rRNA gene-based analysis. Dissection and FISH confirmed the location of the bacteria in large, paired, multilobate organs in the abdominal region of the insect. TEM indicated that the dominant pleomorphic bacteria were confined to bacteriocytes in the sheath-enclosed bacteriome. Phylogenetic analysis revealed the presence of three distinct bacterial types, the bacteriome-associated B-symbiont (Bacteroidetes), an Erwinia-related symbiont (Gammaproteobacteria) and Wolbachia sp. (Alphaproteobacteria). This study extends the current knowledge of scale insect symbionts and is the first microbiological investigation of the ecologically important coelostomidiid scales.

  2. Molecular evolution and expression of the CRAL_TRIO protein family in insects.

    PubMed

    Smith, Gilbert; Briscoe, Adriana D

    2015-07-01

    CRAL_TRIO domain proteins are known to bind small lipophilic molecules such as retinal, inositol and Vitamin E and include such gene family members as PINTA, α-tocopherol transfer (ATT) proteins, retinoid binding proteins, and clavesins. In insects, very little is known about either the molecular evolution of this family of proteins or their ligand specificity. Here we characterize insect CRAL_TRIO domain proteins and present the first insect CRAL_TRIO protein phylogeny constructed by performing reciprocal BLAST searches of the reference genomes of Drosophila melanogaster, Anopheles gambiae, Apis mellifera, Tribolium castaneum, Bombyx mori, Manduca sexta and Danaus plexippus. We find several highly conserved amino acid residues in the CRAL_TRIO domain-containing genes across insects and a gene expansion resulting in more than twice as many gene family members in lepidopterans than in other surveyed insect species, but no lepidopteran homolog of the PINTA gene in Drosophila. In addition, we examined the expression pattern of CRAL_TRIO domain genes in Manduca sexta heads using RNA-Seq data. Of the 42 gene family members found in the M. sexta reference genome, we found 30 expressed in the head tissue with similar expression profiles between males and females. Our results suggest this gene family underwent a large expansion in lepidopteran, making the lepidopteran CRAL_TRIO domain family distinct from other holometabolous insect lineages.

  3. The Comet assay in insects--Status, prospects and benefits for science.

    PubMed

    Augustyniak, Maria; Gladysz, Marcin; Dziewięcka, Marta

    2016-01-01

    The Comet assay has been recently adapted to investigate DNA damage in insects. The first reports of its use in Drosophila melanogaster appeared in 2002. Since then, the interest in the application of the Comet assay to studies of insects has been rapidly increasing. Many authors see substantial potential in the use of the Comet assay in D. melanogaster for medical toxicology studies. This application could allow the testing of drugs and result in an understanding of the mechanisms of action of toxins, which could significantly influence the limited research that has been performed on vertebrates. The possible perspectives and benefits for science are considered in this review. In the last decade, the use of the Comet assay has been described in insects other than D. melanogaster. Specifically, methods to prepare a cell suspension from insect tissues, which is a difficult task, were analyzed and compared in detail. Furthermore, attention was paid to any differences and modifications in the research protocols, such as the buffer composition and electrophoresis conditions. Various scientific fields in addition to toxicological and ecotoxicological research were considered. We expect the Comet assay to be used in environmental risk assessments and to improve our understanding of many important phenomena of insect life, such as metamorphosis, molting, diapause and quiescence. The use of this method to study species that are of key importance to humans, such as pests and beneficial insects, appears to be highly probable and very promising. The use of the Comet assay for DNA stability testing in insects will most likely rapidly increase in the future.

  4. Molecular evidence for ancient asexuality in timema stick insects.

    PubMed

    Schwander, Tanja; Henry, Lee; Crespi, Bernard J

    2011-07-12

    Asexuality is rare in animals in spite of its apparent advantage relative to sexual reproduction, indicating that it must be associated with profound costs [1-9]. One expectation is that reproductive advantages gained by new asexual lineages will be quickly eroded over time [3, 5-7]. Ancient asexual taxa that have evolved and adapted without sex would be "scandalous" exceptions to this rule, but it is often difficult to exclude the possibility that putative asexuals deploy some form of "cryptic" sex, or have abandoned sex more recently than estimated from divergence times to sexual relatives [10]. Here we provide evidence, from high intraspecific divergence of mitochondrial sequence and nuclear allele divergence patterns, that several independently derived Timema stick-insect lineages have persisted without recombination for more than a million generations. Nuclear alleles in the asexual lineages displayed significantly higher intraindividual divergences than in related sexual species. In addition, within two asexuals, nuclear allele phylogenies suggested the presence of two clades, with sequences from the same individual appearing in both clades. These data strongly support ancient asexuality in Timema and validate the genus as an exceptional opportunity to attack the question of how asexual reproduction can be maintained over long periods of evolutionary time.

  5. Molecular Evolution of Insect Sociality: An Eco-Evo-Devo Perspective.

    PubMed

    Toth, Amy L; Rehan, Sandra M

    2017-01-31

    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. Despite this proliferation of ideas, there has been little synthesis, even though these ideas are not mutually exclusive and may in fact be complementary. We review available data on molecular evolution of insect sociality and highlight key biotic and abiotic factors influencing social insect genomes. We then suggest both phylogenetic and ecological evolutionary developmental biology (eco-evo-devo) perspectives for a more synthetic view of molecular evolution in insect societies.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    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 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. PMID:24675424

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

    PubMed

    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.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

    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. PMID:26778170

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

    PubMed

    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.

  10. The bugs that came in from the cold: molecular adaptations to low temperatures in insects.

    PubMed

    Doucet, D; Walker, V K; Qin, W

    2009-04-01

    The widespread distribution of insects over many ecological niches is a testimony to their evolutionary success. The colonization of environments at high latitudes or altitudes required the evolution of biochemical strategies that reduced the impact of cold or freezing stress. This review focuses on our current interests in some of the genes and proteins involved in low temperature survival in insects. Although the most widespread form of protection is the synthesis of low molecular weight polyol cryoprotectants, proteins with intrinsic protective properties, such as the thermal hysteresis or antifreeze proteins are also important. These have been cloned and characterized in certain moths and beetles. Molecular techniques allowing the isolation of genes differentially regulated by low temperatures have revealed that heat shock proteins, cold stress proteins, membrane protectants, as well as ice nucleators and other less well characterized proteins likely also play a role in cold hardiness.

  11. The evolutionary diversity of insect retinal mosaics: Common design principles and emerging molecular logic

    PubMed Central

    Wernet, Mathias F.; Perry, Michael W.; Desplan, Claude

    2015-01-01

    Independent evolution has resulted in a vast diversity of eyes. Despite the lack of a common Bauplan or ancestral structure, similar developmental strategies are used. For instance, different classes of photoreceptor cells (PRs) are distributed stochastically and/or localized in different regions of the retina. Here we focus on recent progress made towards understanding the molecular principles behind patterning retinal mosaics of insects, one of the most diverse groups of animals adapted to life on land, in the air, under water, or on the water surface. Morphological, physiological, and behavioral studies from many species provide detailed descriptions of the vast variation in retinal design and function. By integrating this knowledge with recent progress in the characterization of insect Rhodopsins as well as insight from the model organism Drosophila melanogaster, we seek to identify the molecular logic behind the adaptation of retinal mosaics to an animal’s habitat and way of life. PMID:26025917

  12. N-haloacetylimino neonicotinoids: potency and molecular recognition at the insect nicotinic receptor.

    PubMed

    Tomizawa, Motohiro; Durkin, Kathleen A; Ohno, Ikuya; Nagura, Kyoko; Manabe, Mio; Kumazawa, Satoru; Kagabu, Shinzo

    2011-06-15

    This structure-activity relationship study for neonicotinoids with an N-haloacetylimino pharmacophore identifies several candidate compounds showing outstanding insecticidal potency and consequently leads to establishing their molecular recognition at an insect nicotinic receptor structural model, wherein the neonicotinoid halogen atoms (fluorine, chlorine, bromine, and iodine) variously interact with the receptor loops C-D interfacial niche via H-bonding and/or hydrophobic interactions.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  14. Molecular Science Research Center 1992 annual report

    SciTech Connect

    Knotek, M.L.

    1994-01-01

    The Molecular Science Research Center is a designated national user facility, available to scientists from universities, industry, and other national laboratories. After an opening section, which includes conferences hosted, appointments, and projects, this document presents progress in the following fields: chemical structure and dynamics; environmental dynamics and simulation; macromolecular structure and dynamics; materials and interfaces; theory, modeling, and simulation; and computing and information sciences. Appendices are included: MSRC staff and associates, 1992 publications and presentations, activities, and acronyms and abbreviations.

  15. Committee on Atomic, Molecular and Optical Sciences

    SciTech Connect

    Lancaster, James

    2015-06-30

    The Committee on Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Sciences (CAMOS) is a standing activity of the National Research Council (NRC) that operates under the auspices of the Board on Physics and Astronomy. CAMOS is one of five standing committees of the BPA that are charged with assisting it in achieving its goals—monitoring the health of physics and astronomy, identifying important new developments at the scientific forefronts, fostering interactions with other fields, strengthening connections to technology, facilitating effective service to the nation, and enhancing education in physics. CAMOS provides these capabilities for the atomic, molecular and optical (AMO) sciences.

  16. The molecular interactions of pyrethroid insecticides with insect and mammalian sodium channels.

    PubMed

    Vais, H; Williamson, M S; Devonshire, A L; Usherwood, P N

    2001-10-01

    Recent progress in the cloning of alpha (para) and beta (TipE) Na channel sub-units from Drosophila melanogaster (fruit fly) and Musca domestica (housefly) have facilitated functional expression studies of insect Na channels in Xenopus laevis oocytes, assayed by voltage clamp techniques. The effects of Type I and Type III pyrethroids on the biophysical properties of these channels are critically reviewed. Pyrethroid resistance mutations (termed kdr and super-kdr) that reduce the sensitivity of the insect Na channel to pyrethroids have been identified in a range of insect species. Some of these mutations (e.g. L1014F, M918T and T929I) have been incorporated into the para Na channel of Drosophila, either individually or in combination, to investigate their effects on the sensitivity of this channel to pyrethroids. The kdr mutation (L1014F) shifts the voltage dependence of both activation and steady-state inactivation by approximately 5 mV towards more positive potentials and facilitates Na channel inactivation. Incorporation of the super-kdr mutation (M918T) into the Drosophila Na channel also increases channel inactivation and causes a > 100-fold reduction in deltamethrin sensitivity. These effects are shared by T929I, an alternative mutation that confers super-kdr-like resistance. Parallel studies have been undertaken using the rat IIA Na channel to investigate the molecular basis for the low sensitivity of mammalian brain Na channels to pyrethroids. Rat IIA channels containing the mutation L1014F exhibit a shift in their mid-point potential for Na activation, but their overall sensitivity to permethrin remains similar to that of the wild-type rat channel (i.e. both are 1000-fold less sensitive than the wild-type insect channel). Mammalian neuronal Na channels have an isoleucine rather than a methionine at the position (874) corresponding to the super-kdr (M918) residue of the insect channel. Replacement of the isoleucine of the wild-type rat IIA Na channel with a

  17. Molecular Imprinting Applications in Forensic Science.

    PubMed

    Yılmaz, Erkut; Garipcan, Bora; Patra, Hirak K; Uzun, Lokman

    2017-03-28

    Producing molecular imprinting-based materials has received increasing attention due to recognition selectivity, stability, cast effectiveness, and ease of production in various forms for a wide range of applications. The molecular imprinting technique has a variety of applications in the areas of the food industry, environmental monitoring, and medicine for diverse purposes like sample pretreatment, sensing, and separation/purification. A versatile usage, stability and recognition capabilities also make them perfect candidates for use in forensic sciences. Forensic science is a demanding area and there is a growing interest in molecularly imprinted polymers (MIPs) in this field. In this review, recent molecular imprinting applications in the related areas of forensic sciences are discussed while considering the literature of last two decades. Not only direct forensic applications but also studies of possible forensic value were taken into account like illicit drugs, banned sport drugs, effective toxins and chemical warfare agents in a review of over 100 articles. The literature was classified according to targets, material shapes, production strategies, detection method, and instrumentation. We aimed to summarize the current applications of MIPs in forensic science and put forth a projection of their potential uses as promising alternatives for benchmark competitors.

  18. Mobile modeling in the molecular sciences

    EPA Science Inventory

    The art of modeling in the molecular sciences is highly dependent on both the available computational technology, underlying data, and ability to collaborate. With the ever increasing market share of mobile devices, it is assumed by many that tablets will overtake laptops as the...

  19. Molecular characterization of trophic ecology within an island radiation of insect herbivores (Curculionidae: Entiminae: Cratopus).

    PubMed

    Kitson, James J N; Warren, Ben H; Florens, F B Vincent; Baider, Claudia; Strasberg, Dominique; Emerson, Brent C

    2013-11-01

    The phytophagous beetle family Curculionidae is the most species-rich insect family known, with much of this diversity having been attributed to both co-evolution with food plants and host shifts at key points within the early evolutionary history of the group. Less well understood is the extent to which patterns of host use vary within or among related species, largely because of the technical difficulties associated with quantifying this. Here we develop a recently characterized molecular approach to quantify diet within and between two closely related species of weevil occurring primarily within dry forests on the island of Mauritius. Our aim is to quantify dietary variation across populations and assess adaptive and nonadaptive explanations for this and to characterize the nature of a trophic shift within an ecologically distinct population within one of the species. We find that our study species are polyphagous, consuming a much wider range of plants than would be suggested by the literature. Our data suggest that local diet variation is largely explained by food availability, and locally specialist populations consume food plants that are not phylogenetically novel, but do appear to represent a novel preference. Our results demonstrate the power of molecular methods to unambiguously quantify dietary variation across populations of insect herbivores, providing a valuable approach to understanding trophic interactions within and among local plant and insect herbivore communities.

  20. Fauna aquatic insects in sewage maturation ponds of Kashan University of Medical Science 2005.

    PubMed

    Dehghani, Rouhollah; Miranzadeh, Mohhamad Bagher; Yosefzadeh, Mehrnoosh; Zamani, Soheyla

    2007-03-15

    Organic materials in maturation ponds, the personal study was carried out to determine the aquatic insects living in the maturation pond of Kashan University of Medical Sciences in 2005. This was a descriptive study, 9 series of sampling including 1032 of larva, nymph and adults were collected and sent to a laboratory. Then they were diagnosed using stereo microscope and morphologic identification key. At of 1032 collected samples from 4 maturation ponds, the orders if Diptera (52%), Hempitera (24%), Ciclopodidade (12%), Hydroacarina (9.5%), Coleptera (0.77%), Aranida (0.67%), Hymenoptera (0.58%), Odonata (0.48%), were determined. The families of Chironomidae and Culicidae from Diptera order, Corixidae, Notonectidae, Cupepodae and Copepodidae families from Hemiptera order, Hydrophilidae family from Coleptera order, Aranidae family from Aranida order, Vospidae family from Hymenoptera order, Anizoptera suborder from Odonata order were determined. Maturation ponds are the artificial places where are appropriate for the growth and development of aquatic insects and also for their predators with taking in to account that some of these insects are the carriers of pathogens, make inconvenience for human and also has significant role in the cycle of changing materials, it is recommended that further specialized studies carry out in this regard.

  1. The first vitellogenin receptor from a Lepidopteran insect: molecular characterization, expression patterns and RNA interference analysis.

    PubMed

    Shu, Y H; Wang, J W; Lu, K; Zhou, J L; Zhou, Q; Zhang, G R

    2011-02-01

    The vitellogenin receptor (VgR) belongs to the low-density lipoprotein receptor (LDLR) superfamily, and is an important carrier for the uptake of vitellogenin (Vg) into developing oocytes of all oviparous species. The first full-length message for a VgR from a Lepidopteran insect was cloned and sequenced from the ovary of Spodoptera litura Fabricius (GenBank accession no. GU983858). The coding region consisted of 5370 bp flanked by a 49 bp 5'-untranslated region (UTR) and a 177 bp 3'-UTR, which encoded a 1798-residue protein with a predicted molecular weight (MW) of 201.69 kDa. S. litura VgR (SlVgR)comprised two ligand binding sites with four LDLR class A repeats in the first domain and seven in the second domain, an epidermal growth factor-like domain containing an LDLR class B repeat and a YWXD motif, a transmembrane domain and a cytoplasmic domain. A phylogenetic relationship placed SlVgR as a separate group from the other insects. SlVgR messenger RNA (mRNA) was specifically expressed in the ovarian tissues. The developmental expression patterns showed that VgR mRNA was first transcribed in 6(th) day female pupae and the maximum level of VgR mRNA appeared in 36-h-old adults. Immunoblot analysis detected an ovary-specific VgR protein with a MW of ∼200 kDa, whose development profiles were consistent with VgR mRNA expression patterns. RNA inteference (RNAi) specifically disrupted the VgR gene by injection of 3 or 5 µg VgR double-stranded RNA per insect in 4(th) or 6(th) day pupae. RNAi of SlVgR led to a phenotype characterized by high Vg accumulation in the haemolymph, low Vg deposition in the ovary and the failure of insect spawning. These results mean that VgR is critical for binding Vg and transporting it into the oocytes of the insect ovary, thus playing an important role in insect reproduction.

  2. Molecular Science Research Center, 1991 annual report

    SciTech Connect

    Knotek, M.L.

    1992-03-01

    During 1991, the Molecular Science Research Center (MSRC) experienced solid growth and accomplishment and the Environmental, and Molecular Sciences Laboratory (EMSL) construction project moved forward. We began with strong programs in chemical structure and dynamics and theory, modeling, and simulation, and both these programs continued to thrive. We also made significant advances in the development of programs in materials and interfaces and macromolecular structure and dynamics, largely as a result of the key staff recruited to lead these efforts. If there was one pervasive activity for the past year, however, it was to strengthen the role of the EMSL in the overall environmental restoration and waste management (ER/WM) mission at Hanford. These extended activities involved not only MSRC and EMSL staff but all PNL scientific and technical staff engaged in ER/WM programs.

  3. The Sustainable Harvesting of Edible Insects in South Africa, with Reference to Indigenous Knowledge, African Science, Western Science and Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Toms, Rob

    2007-01-01

    In our ongoing research on edible insects in the Limpopo Province of South Africa, we have found evidence of the unsustainable harvesting of edible insects and the food plants of certain insects. The decline in the edible insect industry, together with the need for food security provides a strong incentive to investigate possible causes of…

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

    PubMed

    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, pbinomial = 0.15, pWilcoxon = 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.

  5. Molecular signatures of plastic phenotypes in two eusocial insect species with simple societies.

    PubMed

    Patalano, Solenn; Vlasova, Anna; Wyatt, Chris; Ewels, Philip; Camara, Francisco; Ferreira, Pedro G; Asher, Claire L; Jurkowski, Tomasz P; Segonds-Pichon, Anne; Bachman, Martin; González-Navarrete, Irene; Minoche, André E; Krueger, Felix; Lowy, Ernesto; Marcet-Houben, Marina; Rodriguez-Ales, Jose Luis; Nascimento, Fabio S; Balasubramanian, Shankar; Gabaldon, Toni; Tarver, James E; Andrews, Simon; Himmelbauer, Heinz; Hughes, William O H; Guigó, Roderic; Reik, Wolf; Sumner, Seirian

    2015-11-10

    Phenotypic plasticity is important in adaptation and shapes the evolution of organisms. However, we understand little about what aspects of the genome are important in facilitating plasticity. Eusocial insect societies produce plastic phenotypes from the same genome, as reproductives (queens) and nonreproductives (workers). The greatest plasticity is found in the simple eusocial insect societies in which individuals retain the ability to switch between reproductive and nonreproductive phenotypes as adults. We lack comprehensive data on the molecular basis of plastic phenotypes. Here, we sequenced genomes, microRNAs (miRNAs), and multiple transcriptomes and methylomes from individual brains in a wasp (Polistes canadensis) and an ant (Dinoponera quadriceps) that live in simple eusocial societies. In both species, we found few differences between phenotypes at the transcriptional level, with little functional specialization, and no evidence that phenotype-specific gene expression is driven by DNA methylation or miRNAs. Instead, phenotypic differentiation was defined more subtly by nonrandom transcriptional network organization, with roles in these networks for both conserved and taxon-restricted genes. The general lack of highly methylated regions or methylome patterning in both species may be an important mechanism for achieving plasticity among phenotypes during adulthood. These findings define previously unidentified hypotheses on the genomic processes that facilitate plasticity and suggest that the molecular hallmarks of social behavior are likely to differ with the level of social complexity.

  6. Molecular signatures of plastic phenotypes in two eusocial insect species with simple societies

    PubMed Central

    Patalano, Solenn; Vlasova, Anna; Wyatt, Chris; Ewels, Philip; Camara, Francisco; Ferreira, Pedro G.; Asher, Claire L.; Jurkowski, Tomasz P.; Segonds-Pichon, Anne; Bachman, Martin; González-Navarrete, Irene; Minoche, André E.; Krueger, Felix; Lowy, Ernesto; Marcet-Houben, Marina; Rodriguez-Ales, Jose Luis; Nascimento, Fabio S.; Balasubramanian, Shankar; Gabaldon, Toni; Tarver, James E.; Andrews, Simon; Himmelbauer, Heinz; Hughes, William O. H.; Guigó, Roderic; Reik, Wolf; Sumner, Seirian

    2015-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity is important in adaptation and shapes the evolution of organisms. However, we understand little about what aspects of the genome are important in facilitating plasticity. Eusocial insect societies produce plastic phenotypes from the same genome, as reproductives (queens) and nonreproductives (workers). The greatest plasticity is found in the simple eusocial insect societies in which individuals retain the ability to switch between reproductive and nonreproductive phenotypes as adults. We lack comprehensive data on the molecular basis of plastic phenotypes. Here, we sequenced genomes, microRNAs (miRNAs), and multiple transcriptomes and methylomes from individual brains in a wasp (Polistes canadensis) and an ant (Dinoponera quadriceps) that live in simple eusocial societies. In both species, we found few differences between phenotypes at the transcriptional level, with little functional specialization, and no evidence that phenotype-specific gene expression is driven by DNA methylation or miRNAs. Instead, phenotypic differentiation was defined more subtly by nonrandom transcriptional network organization, with roles in these networks for both conserved and taxon-restricted genes. The general lack of highly methylated regions or methylome patterning in both species may be an important mechanism for achieving plasticity among phenotypes during adulthood. These findings define previously unidentified hypotheses on the genomic processes that facilitate plasticity and suggest that the molecular hallmarks of social behavior are likely to differ with the level of social complexity. PMID:26483466

  7. A restatement of the natural science evidence base concerning neonicotinoid insecticides and insect pollinators

    PubMed Central

    Godfray, H. Charles J.; Blacquière, Tjeerd; Field, Linda M.; Hails, Rosemary S.; Petrokofsky, Gillian; Potts, Simon G.; Raine, Nigel E.; Vanbergen, Adam J.; McLean, Angela R.

    2014-01-01

    There is evidence that in Europe and North America many species of pollinators are in decline, both in abundance and distribution. Although there is a long list of potential causes of this decline, there is concern that neonicotinoid insecticides, in particular through their use as seed treatments are, at least in part, responsible. This paper describes a project that set out to summarize the natural science evidence base relevant to neonicotinoid insecticides and insect pollinators in as policy-neutral terms as possible. A series of evidence statements are listed and categorized according to the nature of the underlying information. The evidence summary forms the appendix to this paper and an annotated bibliography is provided in the electronic supplementary material. PMID:24850927

  8. A restatement of the natural science evidence base concerning neonicotinoid insecticides and insect pollinators.

    PubMed

    Godfray, H Charles J; Blacquière, Tjeerd; Field, Linda M; Hails, Rosemary S; Petrokofsky, Gillian; Potts, Simon G; Raine, Nigel E; Vanbergen, Adam J; McLean, Angela R

    2014-07-07

    There is evidence that in Europe and North America many species of pollinators are in decline, both in abundance and distribution. Although there is a long list of potential causes of this decline, there is concern that neonicotinoid insecticides, in particular through their use as seed treatments are, at least in part, responsible. This paper describes a project that set out to summarize the natural science evidence base relevant to neonicotinoid insecticides and insect pollinators in as policy-neutral terms as possible. A series of evidence statements are listed and categorized according to the nature of the underlying information. The evidence summary forms the appendix to this paper and an annotated bibliography is provided in the electronic supplementary material.

  9. Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory 2004 Annual Report

    SciTech Connect

    White, Julia C.

    2005-04-17

    This 2004 Annual Report describes the research and accomplishments of staff and users of the W.R. Wiley Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory (EMSL), located in Richland, Washington. EMSL is a multidisciplinary, national scientific user facility and research organization, operated by Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) for the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Biological and Environmental Research. The resources and opportunities within the facility are an outgrowth of the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) commitment to fundamental research for understanding and resolving environmental and other critical scientific issues.

  10. Molecular characterization of an insect transferrin and its selective incorporation into eggs during oogenesis.

    PubMed

    Kurama, T; Kurata, S; Natori, S

    1995-03-01

    A protein with a molecular mass of 65 kDa that was specifically taken up into eggs was purified from the hemolymph of adult female Sarcophaga peregrina flies. From cDNA analysis, this protein was shown to be a Sarcophaga transferrin. Unlike mammalian transferrin, the similarity between its N-terminal and C-terminal halves was only 19%, and it was suggested to conjugate one iron atom/molecule in its N-terminal half. Sarcophaga transferrin was found to transport iron ions into eggs during oogenesis and deliver them to another protein, thought to be ferritin. No significant activation of the transferrin gene was detected during embryogenesis, so probably maternal transferrin is used as an intercellular or intracellular iron-transporter during embryogenesis of this insect.

  11. Molecular forensic science analysis of nuclear materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reilly, Dallas David

    Concerns over the proliferation and instances of nuclear material in the environment have increased interest in the expansion of nuclear forensics analysis and attribution programs. A new related field, molecular forensic science (MFS) has helped meet this expansion by applying common scientific analyses to nuclear forensics scenarios. In this work, MFS was applied to three scenarios related to nuclear forensics analysis. In the first, uranium dioxide was synthesized and aged at four sets of static environmental conditions and studied for changes in chemical speciation. The second highlighted the importance of bulk versus particle characterizations by analyzing a heterogeneous industrially prepared sample with similar techniques. In the third, mixed uranium/plutonium hot particles were collected from the McGuire Air Force Base BOMARC Site and analyzed for chemical speciation and elemental surface composition. This work has identified new signatures and has indicated unexpected chemical behavior under various conditions. These findings have lead to an expansion of basic actinide understanding, proof of MFS as a tool for nuclear forensic science, and new areas for expansion in these fields.

  12. Molecular forensic science of nuclear materials

    SciTech Connect

    Wilkerson, Marianne Perry

    2010-01-01

    We are interested in applying our understanding of actinide chemical structure and bonding to broaden the suite of analytical tools available for nuclear forensic analyses. Uranium- and plutonium-oxide systems form under a variety of conditions, and these chemical species exhibit some of the most complex behavior of metal oxide systems known. No less intriguing is the ability of AnO{sub 2} (An: U, Pu) to form non-stoichiometric species described as AnO{sub 2+x}. Environmental studies have shown the value of utilizing the chemical signatures of these actinide oxides materials to understand transport following release into the environment. Chemical speciation of actinide-oxide samples may also provide clues as to the age, source, process history, or transport of the material. The scientific challenge is to identify, measure and understand those aspects of speciation of actinide analytes that carry information about material origin and history most relevant to forensics. Here, we will describe our efforts in material synthesis and analytical methods development that we will use to provide the fundamental science required to characterize actinide oxide molecular structures for forensics science. Structural properties and initial results to measure structural variability of uranium oxide samples using synchrotron-based X-ray Absorption Fine Structure will be discussed.

  13. Utility of Filter Paper for Preserving Insects, Bacteria, and Host Reservoir DNA for Molecular Testing

    PubMed Central

    Karimian, F; Sedaghat, MM; Oshaghi, MA; Mohtarami, F; Dehkordi, A Sanei; Koosha, M; Akbari, S; Hashemi-Aghdam, SS

    2011-01-01

    Background: Appropriate methodology for storage biological materials, extraction of DNA, and proper DNA preservation is vital for studies involving genetic analysis of insects, bacteria, and reservoir hosts as well as for molecular diagnostics of pathogens carried by vectors and reservoirs. Here we tried to evaluate the utility of a simple filter paper-based for storage of insects, bacteria, rodent, and human DNAs using PCR assays. Methods: Total body or haemolymph of individual mosquitoes, sand flies or cockroaches squashed or placed on the paper respectively. Extracted DNA of five different bacteria species as well as blood specimens of human and great gerbil Rhombomys opimus was pipetted directly onto filter paper. The papers were stored in room temperature up to 12 months during 2009 until 2011. At monthly intervals, PCR was conducted using a 1-mm disk from the DNA impregnated filter paper as target DNA. PCR amplification was performed against different target genes of the organisms including the ITS2-rDNA of mosquitoes, mtDNA-COI of the sand flies and cockroaches, 16SrRNA gene of the bacteria, and the mtDNA-CytB of the vertebrates. Results: Successful PCR amplification was observed for all of the specimens regardless of the loci, taxon, or time of storage. The PCR amplification were ranged from 462 to 1500 bp and worked well for the specified target gene/s. Time of storage did not affect the amplification up to one year. Conclusion: The filter paper method is a simple and economical way to store, to preserve, and to distribute DNA samples for PCR analysis. PMID:22808417

  14. Molecular Science Research Center annual report

    SciTech Connect

    Knotek, M.L.

    1991-01-01

    The Chemical Structure and Dynamics group is studying chemical kinetics and reactions dynamics of terrestrial and atmospheric processes as well as the chemistry of complex waste forms and waste storage media. Staff are using new laser systems and surface-mapping techniques in combination with molecular clusters that mimic adsorbate/surface interactions. The Macromolecular Structure and Dynamics group is determining biomolecular structure/function relationships for processes the control the biological transformation of contaminants and the health effects of toxic substances. The Materials and Interfaces program is generating information needed to design and synthesize advanced materials for the analysis and separation of mixed chemical waste, the long-term storage of concentrated hazardous materials, and the development of chemical sensors for environmental monitoring of various organic and inorganic species. The Theory, Modeling, and Simulation group is developing detailed molecular-level descriptions of the chemical, physical, and biological processes in natural and contaminated systems. Researchers are using the full spectrum of computational techniques. The Computer and Information Sciences group is developing new approaches to handle vast amounts of data and to perform calculations for complex natural systems. The EMSL will contain a high-performance computing facility, ancillary computing laboratories, and high-speed data acquisition systems for all major research instruments.

  15. Insects & Other Arthropods. Animal Life in Action[TM]. Schlessinger Science Library. [Videotape].

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    2000

    This 23-minute videotape for grades 5-8, presents the myriad of animal life that exists on the planet. Students can view and perform experiments and investigations that help explain animal traits and habits. They also learn that there are more species of insects than any other animal class in the world. Insects are incredible creatures with many…

  16. Moths, Butterflies, Other Insects & Spiders: Science in Art, Song, and Play.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vansant, Rhonda; Dondiego, Barbara L.

    Some children hold the belief that insects and spiders are all mere nuisances because they have never had opportunities to observe, study, and learn to appreciate how these animals live and carry out their purposes in life. Studying insects and spiders fosters children's natural curiosity about the world around them and encourages them to use…

  17. Genetics and molecular biology of rhythms in Drosophila and other insects.

    PubMed

    Hall, Jeffrey C

    2003-01-01

    Application of generic variants (Sections II-IV, VI, and IX) and molecular manipulations of rhythm-related genes (Sections V-X) have been used extensively to investigate features of insect chronobiology that might not have been experimentally accessible otherwise. Most such tests of mutants and molecular-genetic xperiments have been performed in Drosophila melanogaster. Results from applying visual-system variants have revealed that environmental inputs to the circadian clock in adult flies are mediated by external photoreceptive structures (Section II) and also by direct light reception chat occurs in certain brain neurons (Section IX). The relevant light-absorbing molecuLes are rhodopsins and "blue-receptive" cryptochrome (Sections II and IX). Variations in temperature are another clock input (Section IV), as has been analyzed in part by use of molecular techniques and transgenes involving factors functioning near the heart of the circadian clock (Section VIII). At that location within the fly's chronobiological system, approximately a half-dozen-perhaps up to as many as 10-clock genes encode functions that act and interact to form the circadian pacemaker (Sections III and V). This entity functions in part by transcriptional control of certain clock genes' expressions, which result in the production of key proteins that feed back negatively to regulate their own mRNA production. This occurs in part by interactions of such proteins with others that function as transcriptional activators (Section V). The implied feedback loop operates such that there are daily variations in the abundances of products put out by about one-half of the core clock genes. Thus, the normal expression of these genes defines circadian rhythms of their own, paralleling the effects of mutations at the corresponding genetic loci (Section III), which are to disrupt or apparently eliminate clock functioning. The fluctuations in the abundance of gene products are controlled transciptionally and

  18. Light-dependent magnetic compass orientation in amphibians and insects: candidate receptors and candidate molecular mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Phillips, John B; Jorge, Paulo E; Muheim, Rachel

    2010-04-06

    Magnetic compass orientation by amphibians, and some insects, is mediated by a light-dependent magnetoreception mechanism. Cryptochrome photopigments, best known for their role in circadian rhythms, are proposed to mediate such responses. In this paper, we explore light-dependent properties of magnetic sensing at three levels: (i) behavioural (wavelength-dependent effects of light on magnetic compass orientation), (ii) physiological (photoreceptors/photopigment systems with properties suggesting a role in magnetoreception), and (iii) molecular (cryptochrome-based and non-cryptochrome-based signalling pathways that are compatible with behavioural responses). Our goal is to identify photoreceptors and signalling pathways that are likely to play a specialized role in magnetoreception in order to definitively answer the question of whether the effects of light on magnetic compass orientation are mediated by a light-dependent magnetoreception mechanism, or instead are due to input from a non-light-dependent (e.g. magnetite-based) magnetoreception mechanism that secondarily interacts with other light-dependent processes.

  19. Light-dependent magnetic compass orientation in amphibians and insects: candidate receptors and candidate molecular mechanisms

    PubMed Central

    Phillips, John B.; Jorge, Paulo E.; Muheim, Rachel

    2010-01-01

    Magnetic compass orientation by amphibians, and some insects, is mediated by a light-dependent magnetoreception mechanism. Cryptochrome photopigments, best known for their role in circadian rhythms, are proposed to mediate such responses. In this paper, we explore light-dependent properties of magnetic sensing at three levels: (i) behavioural (wavelength-dependent effects of light on magnetic compass orientation), (ii) physiological (photoreceptors/photopigment systems with properties suggesting a role in magnetoreception), and (iii) molecular (cryptochrome-based and non-cryptochrome-based signalling pathways that are compatible with behavioural responses). Our goal is to identify photoreceptors and signalling pathways that are likely to play a specialized role in magnetoreception in order to definitively answer the question of whether the effects of light on magnetic compass orientation are mediated by a light-dependent magnetoreception mechanism, or instead are due to input from a non-light-dependent (e.g. magnetite-based) magnetoreception mechanism that secondarily interacts with other light-dependent processes. PMID:20124357

  20. Low molecular weight serine protease inhibitors from insects are proteins with highly conserved sequences.

    PubMed

    Boigegrain, R A; Pugnière, M; Paroutaud, P; Castro, B; Brehélin, M

    2000-02-01

    A low molecular weight protease inhibitor peptide found in ovaries of the desert locust Schistocerca gregaria (SGPI-2), was purified from plasma of the same locust and sequenced. It was named SGCI. It was found active towards chymotrypsin and human leukocyte elastase. SGCI was synthesized using a solid-phase procedure and the sequence of its reactive site for chymotrypsin was determined. Compared with an inhibitor purified earlier from another locust species, the total sequence of SGCI showed 88% identity. In particular, the sequence of the reactive site of these inhibitors was identical. Our search for a closely related peptide in an insect species far removed from locusts, the lepidopteran Spodoptera littoralis, was unfruitful but a different chymotrypsin inhibitor, belonging to the Kazal family, was found whose mass is greater than that of SGCI (20 vs 3.6 kDa). Its N-terminal sequence shares 80% identity with that of a chymotrypsin inhibitor purified earlier from the haemolymph of another lepidopteran. Conservation of the amino acid sequence in the reactive site seems to be an exception among protease inhibitors.

  1. Evaluation of bias on the assessment of diet breadth of herbivorous insects using molecular methods.

    PubMed

    De la Cadena, Gissela; Papadopoulou, Anna; Maes, Jean-Michel; Gómez-Zurita, Jesús

    2017-04-01

    The interactions between herbivores and their host plants play a key role in ecological processes. Understanding the width and nature of these interactions is fundamental to ecology and conservation. Recent research on DNA-based inference of trophic associations suggests that the host range of phytophagous insects in the tropics may be wider than previously thought based on traditional observation. However, the reliability of molecular inference of ecological associations, still strongly dependent on PCR and thus exposed to the risk of contamination with environmental DNA, is under debate. Here, we explored alternative procedures to reduce the chance of amplification of external, nondiet DNA, including surface decontamination and analysis of mid/hind guts, comparing the results with those obtained using the standard protocol. We studied 261 specimens in eight species of Neotropical Chrysomelidae that yielded 316 psbA-trnH intergenic spacer sequences (cpDNA marker of putative diets) from unique and multiple-band PCR results. The taxonomic identity of these sequences was inferred using the automated pipeline BAGpipe, yielding results consistent with 31 plant families. Regardless of the protocol used, a wide taxonomic spectrum of food was inferred for all chrysomelid species. Canonical Correspondence Analysis using these data revealed significant differences attributed mainly to species (expectedly, since they represent different ecologies), but also to treatment (untreated vs. cleaned/gut samples) and PCR results (single vs. multiple bands). Molecular identification of diets is not straightforward and, regardless of the species' niche breadth, combining approaches that reduce external contamination and studying multiple individuals per species may help increasing confidence in results.

  2. Continuity versus split and reconstitution: exploring the molecular developmental corollaries of insect eye primordium evolution.

    PubMed

    Friedrich, Markus

    2006-11-15

    Holometabolous insects like Drosophila proceed through two phases of visual system development. The embryonic phase generates simple eyes of the larva. The postembryonic phase produces the adult specific compound eyes during late larval development and pupation. In primitive insects, by contrast, eye development persists seemingly continuously from embryogenesis through the end of postembryogenesis. Comparative literature suggests that the evolutionary transition from continuous to biphasic eye development occurred via transient developmental arrest. This review investigates how the developmental arrest model relates to the gene networks regulating larval and adult eye development in Drosophila, and embryonic compound eye development in primitive insects. Consistent with the developmental arrest model, the available data suggest that the determination of the anlage of the rudimentary Drosophila larval eye is homologous to the embryonic specification of the juvenile compound eye in directly developing insects while the Drosophila compound eye primordium is evolutionarily related to the yet little studied stem cell based postembryonic eye primordium of primitive insects.

  3. Molecular developmental evidence for a subcoxal origin of pleurites in insects and identity of the subcoxa in the gnathal appendages.

    PubMed

    Coulcher, Joshua F; Edgecombe, Gregory D; Telford, Maximilian J

    2015-10-28

    Pleurites are chitinous plates in the body wall of insects and myriapods. They are believed to be an adaptation to locomotion on land but their developmental and evolutionary origins are unclear. A widely endorsed explanation for their origin is through toughening pre-existing parts of the body wall; in contrast, the subcoxal theory suggests pleurites derive from a redeployment of the proximal-most section of the leg, the subcoxa. Here, by studying expression of appendage patterning genes in embryos and larvae of the beetle Tribolium castaneum, we provide the first molecular evidence for the existence of a cryptic subcoxal segment in developing legs. We follow this structure during development and show that the embryonic subcoxa later forms the pleurites of the larva as predicted by the subcoxal theory. Our data also demonstrate that subcoxal segments are present in all post-antennal appendages, including the first molecular evidence of a two-segmented mandible with a subcoxal segment in insects.

  4. Scientific Encounters of the Insect World. Reading Activities That Explore Nature's Fascinating Insects. A Good Apple Science Activity Book for Grades 4-7.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Embry, Lynn

    Insects comprise the largest group of animals in the world and newly discovered ones are being added to the list every year. The habits of even the most common insects are interesting to observe. This book introduces insects that many children will be able to observe in their environments. Interesting information is presented to help children…

  5. Australian endemic pest tephritids: genetic, molecular and microbial tools for improved Sterile Insect Technique

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Among Australian endemic tephritid fruit flies, the sibling species Bactrocera tryoni and Bactrocera neohumeralis have been serious horticultural pests since the introduction of horticulture in the nineteenth century. More recently, Bactrocera jarvisi has also been declared a pest in northern Australia. After several decades of genetic research there is now a range of classical and molecular genetic tools that can be used to develop improved Sterile Insect Technique (SIT) strains for control of these pests. Four-way crossing strategies have the potential to overcome the problem of inbreeding in mass-reared strains of B. tryoni. The ability to produce hybrids between B. tryoni and the other two species in the laboratory has proved useful for the development of genetically marked strains. The identification of Y-chromosome markers in B. jarvisi means that male and female embryos can be distinguished in any strain that carries a B. jarvisi Y chromosome. This has enabled the study of homologues of the sex-determination genes during development of B jarvisi and B. tryoni, which is necessary for the generation of genetic-sexing strains. Germ-line transformation has been established and a draft genome sequence for B. tryoni released. Transcriptomes from various species, tissues and developmental stages, to aid in identification of manipulation targets for improving SIT, have been assembled and are in the pipeline. Broad analyses of the microbiome have revealed a metagenome that is highly variable within and across species and defined by the environment. More specific analyses detected Wolbachia at low prevalence in the tropics but absent in temperate regions, suggesting a possible role for this endosymbiont in future control strategies. PMID:25470996

  6. Effects of temperature and molecular oxygen on the use of atmospheric pressure plasma as a novel method for insect control.

    PubMed

    Donohue, Kevin V; Bures, Brian L; Bourham, Mohamed A; Roe, R Michael

    2008-04-01

    Helium atmospheric pressure plasma discharge (APPD) was previously shown to have insecticidal activity with a possible site of action on the insect nervous, neuromuscular system, or both. In the current study, methods to increase the insecticidal activity of plasma by using increased APPD temperature and the introduction of molecular oxygen were investigated for the first time. An increase in the helium plasma temperature from 37 to 50 degrees C increased the insecticidal activity of plasma for the control of the German cockroach, Blattella germanica (L.); western flower thrips, Frankliniella occidentalis (Pergande); and citrus mealybug, Planococcus citri (Risso). This increase in activity could not be explained by the increase in air temperature alone, and it suggests that the enhanced insecticidal activity resulted from increased ionization of the APPD and ion bombardment of the insect. Emission spectroscopy showed that the introduction of 0.5% oxygen into helium plasma produced ionic molecular oxygen at 559.7 and 597.3 nm. The introduction of oxygen to the APPD greatly increased the insecticidal activity of plasma for the citrus mealybug but not the German cockroach or western flower thrips. For the mealybug as an example, the mortality of a 60-s exposure of 37 degrees C helium plasma was 0% at 1 h after exposure and 100% under the same conditions after the introduction of oxygen. It seems that increases in temperature and the introduction of oxygen even at low levels can increase the insecticidal activity of plasma to varying degrees depending on the insect species. The symptomology of cockroach death for both hot plasma and plasma containing trace amounts of molecular oxygen continued to suggest that the site of action of APPD is the insect nervous system, neuromuscular system, or both.

  7. Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory Annual Report: Fiscal Year 2006

    SciTech Connect

    Foster, Nancy S.; Showalter, Mary Ann

    2007-03-23

    This report describes the activities and research performed at the Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory, a Department of Energy national scientific user facility at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, during Fiscal Year 2006.

  8. A restatement of recent advances in the natural science evidence base concerning neonicotinoid insecticides and insect pollinators.

    PubMed

    Godfray, H Charles J; Blacquière, Tjeerd; Field, Linda M; Hails, Rosemary S; Potts, Simon G; Raine, Nigel E; Vanbergen, Adam J; McLean, Angela R

    2015-11-07

    A summary is provided of recent advances in the natural science evidence base concerning the effects of neonicotinoid insecticides on insect pollinators in a format (a 'restatement') intended to be accessible to informed but not expert policymakers and stakeholders. Important new studies have been published since our recent review of this field (Godfray et al. 2014 Proc. R. Soc. B 281, 20140558. (doi:10.1098/rspb.2014.0558)) and the subject continues to be an area of very active research and high policy relevance.

  9. A restatement of recent advances in the natural science evidence base concerning neonicotinoid insecticides and insect pollinators

    PubMed Central

    Godfray, H. Charles J.; Blacquière, Tjeerd; Field, Linda M.; Hails, Rosemary S.; Potts, Simon G.; Raine, Nigel E.; Vanbergen, Adam J.; McLean, Angela R.

    2015-01-01

    A summary is provided of recent advances in the natural science evidence base concerning the effects of neonicotinoid insecticides on insect pollinators in a format (a ‘restatement') intended to be accessible to informed but not expert policymakers and stakeholders. Important new studies have been published since our recent review of this field (Godfray et al. 2014 Proc. R. Soc. B 281, 20140558. (doi:10.1098/rspb.2014.0558)) and the subject continues to be an area of very active research and high policy relevance. PMID:26511042

  10. Marine molecular biology: an emerging field of biological sciences.

    PubMed

    Thakur, Narsinh L; Jain, Roopesh; Natalio, Filipe; Hamer, Bojan; Thakur, Archana N; Müller, Werner E G

    2008-01-01

    An appreciation of the potential applications of molecular biology is of growing importance in many areas of life sciences, including marine biology. During the past two decades, the development of sophisticated molecular technologies and instruments for biomedical research has resulted in significant advances in the biological sciences. However, the value of molecular techniques for addressing problems in marine biology has only recently begun to be cherished. It has been proven that the exploitation of molecular biological techniques will allow difficult research questions about marine organisms and ocean processes to be addressed. Marine molecular biology is a discipline, which strives to define and solve the problems regarding the sustainable exploration of marine life for human health and welfare, through the cooperation between scientists working in marine biology, molecular biology, microbiology and chemistry disciplines. Several success stories of the applications of molecular techniques in the field of marine biology are guiding further research in this area. In this review different molecular techniques are discussed, which have application in marine microbiology, marine invertebrate biology, marine ecology, marine natural products, material sciences, fisheries, conservation and bio-invasion etc. In summary, if marine biologists and molecular biologists continue to work towards strong partnership during the next decade and recognize intellectual and technological advantages and benefits of such partnership, an exciting new frontier of marine molecular biology will emerge in the future.

  11. Fundamental Approaches in Molecular Biology for Communication Sciences and Disorders

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bartlett, Rebecca S.; Jette, Marie E.; King, Suzanne N.; Schaser, Allison; Thibeault, Susan L.

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: This contemporary tutorial will introduce general principles of molecular biology, common deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA), ribonucleic acid (RNA), and protein assays and their relevance in the field of communication sciences and disorders. Method: Over the past 2 decades, knowledge of the molecular pathophysiology of human disease has…

  12. Demystifying computer science for molecular ecologists.

    PubMed

    Belcaid, Mahdi; Toonen, Robert J

    2015-06-01

    In this age of data-driven science and high-throughput biology, computational thinking is becoming an increasingly important skill for tackling both new and long-standing biological questions. However, despite its obvious importance and conspicuous integration into many areas of biology, computer science is still viewed as an obscure field that has, thus far, permeated into only a few of the biology curricula across the nation. A national survey has shown that lack of computational literacy in environmental sciences is the norm rather than the exception [Valle & Berdanier (2012) Bulletin of the Ecological Society of America, 93, 373-389]. In this article, we seek to introduce a few important concepts in computer science with the aim of providing a context-specific introduction aimed at research biologists. Our goal was to help biologists understand some of the most important mainstream computational concepts to better appreciate bioinformatics methods and trade-offs that are not obvious to the uninitiated.

  13. Surviving the cold: molecular analyses of insect cryoprotective dehydration in the Arctic springtail Megaphorura arctica (Tullberg)

    PubMed Central

    Clark, Melody S; Thorne, Michael AS; Purać, Jelena; Burns, Gavin; Hillyard, Guy; Popović, Željko D; Grubor-Lajšić, Gordana; Worland, M Roger

    2009-01-01

    Background Insects provide tractable models for enhancing our understanding of the physiological and cellular processes that enable survival at extreme low temperatures. They possess three main strategies to survive the cold: freeze tolerance, freeze avoidance or cryoprotective dehydration, of which the latter method is exploited by our model species, the Arctic springtail Megaphorura arctica, formerly Onychiurus arcticus (Tullberg 1876). The physiological mechanisms underlying cryoprotective dehydration have been well characterised in M. arctica and to date this process has been described in only a few other species: the Antarctic nematode Panagrolaimus davidi, an enchytraied worm, the larvae of the Antarctic midge Belgica antarctica and the cocoons of the earthworm Dendrobaena octaedra. There are no in-depth molecular studies on the underlying cold survival mechanisms in any species. Results A cDNA microarray was generated using 6,912 M. arctica clones printed in duplicate. Analysis of clones up-regulated during dehydration procedures (using both cold- and salt-induced dehydration) has identified a number of significant cellular processes, namely the production and mobilisation of trehalose, protection of cellular systems via small heat shock proteins and tissue/cellular remodelling during the dehydration process. Energy production, initiation of protein translation and cell division, plus potential tissue repair processes dominate genes identified during recovery. Heat map analysis identified a duplication of the trehalose-6-phosphate synthase (TPS) gene in M. arctica and also 53 clones co-regulated with TPS, including a number of membrane associated and cell signalling proteins. Q-PCR on selected candidate genes has also contributed to our understanding with glutathione-S-transferase identified as the major antioxdidant enzyme protecting the cells during these stressful procedures, and a number of protein kinase signalling molecules involved in recovery

  14. Insights into the molecular mechanisms underlying diversified wing venation among insects.

    PubMed

    Shimmi, Osamu; Matsuda, Shinya; Hatakeyama, Masatsugu

    2014-08-22

    Insect wings are great resources for studying morphological diversities in nature as well as in fossil records. Among them, variation in wing venation is one of the most characteristic features of insect species. Venation is therefore, undeniably a key factor of species-specific functional traits of the wings; however, the mechanism underlying wing vein formation among insects largely remains unexplored. Our knowledge of the genetic basis of wing development is solely restricted to Drosophila melanogaster. A critical step in wing vein development in Drosophila is the activation of the decapentaplegic (Dpp)/bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) signalling pathway during pupal stages. A key mechanism is the directional transport of Dpp from the longitudinal veins into the posterior crossvein by BMP-binding proteins, resulting in redistribution of Dpp that reflects wing vein patterns. Recent works on the sawfly Athalia rosae, of the order Hymenoptera, also suggested that the Dpp transport system is required to specify fore- and hindwing vein patterns. Given that Dpp redistribution via transport is likely to be a key mechanism for establishing wing vein patterns, this raises the interesting possibility that distinct wing vein patterns are generated, based on where Dpp is transported. Experimental evidence in Drosophila suggests that the direction of Dpp transport is regulated by prepatterned positional information. These observations lead to the postulation that Dpp generates diversified insect wing vein patterns through species-specific positional information of its directional transport. Extension of these observations in some winged insects will provide further insights into the mechanisms underlying diversified wing venation among insects.

  15. Nanoarchitectonics of Molecular Aggregates: Science and Technology

    SciTech Connect

    Ramanathan, Nathan Muruganathan; Hong, Kunlun; Ji, Dr. Qingmin; Hill, Dr. Jonathan P; Ariga, Katsuhiko; Yusuke, Yonamine

    2014-01-01

    The field of making, studying and using molecular aggregates, in which the individual molecules (monomers) are arranged in a regular fashion, has come a long way. Taking control over the aggregation of small molecules and polymers in bulk, on surfaces and at interfaces pose a considerable challenge for their utilization in modern high tech applications. In this review we provide a detailed insight into recent trends in molecular aggregates from the perspectives of nanoarchitectonics.

  16. Gene discovery and molecular pre-breeding for insect resistance in wheat and barley

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Pre-breeding research has a significant role in linking between genetic resources and breeding as it shortens the time frame between genetic enhancement and the development of new, improved crop varieties. The Russian wheat aphid (RWA), Diuraphis noxia, is one of the most damaging insect pests of w...

  17. Molecular Science Computing Facility Scientific Challenges: Linking Across Scales

    SciTech Connect

    De Jong, Wibe A.; Windus, Theresa L.

    2005-07-01

    The purpose of this document is to define the evolving science drivers for performing environmental molecular research at the William R. Wiley Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory (EMSL) and to provide guidance associated with the next-generation high-performance computing center that must be developed at EMSL's Molecular Science Computing Facility (MSCF) in order to address this critical research. The MSCF is the pre-eminent computing facility?supported by the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE's) Office of Biological and Environmental Research (BER)?tailored to provide the fastest time-to-solution for current computational challenges in chemistry and biology, as well as providing the means for broad research in the molecular and environmental sciences. The MSCF provides integral resources and expertise to emerging EMSL Scientific Grand Challenges and Collaborative Access Teams that are designed to leverage the multiple integrated research capabilities of EMSL, thereby creating a synergy between computation and experiment to address environmental molecular science challenges critical to DOE and the nation.

  18. Committee on Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Sciences (CAMOS)

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1992-01-01

    The Committee on Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Sciences is a standing committee under the auspices of the Board on Physics and Astronomy, Commission on Physical Sciences, Mathematics, and Applications of the National Academy of Sciences -- National Research Council. The atomic, molecular, and optical (AMO) sciences represent a broad and diverse field in which much of the research is carried out by small groups. These groups generally have not operated in concert with each other and, prior to the establishment of CAMOS, there was no single committee or organization that accepted the responsibility of monitoring the continuing development and assessing the general public health of the field as a whole. CAMOS has accepted this responsibility and currently provides a focus for the AMO community that is unique and essential. The membership of CAMOS is drawn from research laboratories in universities, industry, and government. Areas of expertise on the committee include atomic physics, molecular science, and optics. A special effort has been made to include a balanced representation from the three subfields. (A roster is attached.) CAMOS has conducted a number of studies related to the health of atomic and molecular science and is well prepared to response to requests for studies on specific issues. This report brief reviews the committee work of progress.

  19. Molecular genetics at the Fort Collins Science Center

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Oyler-McCance, S.J.; Stevens, P.D.

    2011-01-01

    The Fort Collins Science Center operates a molecular genetic and systematics research facility (FORT Molecular Ecology Laboratory) that uses molecular genetic tools to provide genetic information needed to inform natural resource management decisions. For many wildlife species, the data generated have become increasingly important in the development of their long-term management strategies, leading to a better understanding of species diversity, population dynamics and ecology, and future conservation and management needs. The Molecular Ecology Lab serves Federal research and resource management agencies by developing scientifically rigorous research programs using nuclear, mitochondrial and chloroplast DNA to help address many of today's conservation biology and natural resource management issues.

  20. Atomic and molecular science with synchrotron radiation

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1989-11-07

    This paper discusses the following topics: electron correlation in atoms; atomic innershell excitation and decay mechanisms; timing experiments; x-ray scattering; properties of ionized species; electronic properties of actinide atoms; total photon-interaction cross sections; and molecular physics. 66 refs. (LSP)

  1. Towards the elements of successful insect RNAi.

    PubMed

    Scott, Jeffrey G; Michel, Kristin; Bartholomay, Lyric C; Siegfried, Blair D; Hunter, Wayne B; Smagghe, Guy; Zhu, Kun Yan; Douglas, Angela E

    2013-12-01

    RNA interference (RNAi), the sequence-specific suppression of gene expression, offers great opportunities for insect science, especially to analyze gene function, manage pest populations, and reduce disease pathogens. The accumulating body of literature on insect RNAi has revealed that the efficiency of RNAi varies between different species, the mode of RNAi delivery, and the genes being targeted. There is also variation in the duration of transcript suppression. At present, we have a limited capacity to predict the ideal experimental strategy for RNAi of a particular gene/insect because of our incomplete understanding of whether and how the RNAi signal is amplified and spread among insect cells. Consequently, development of the optimal RNAi protocols is a highly empirical process. This limitation can be relieved by systematic analysis of the molecular physiological basis of RNAi mechanisms in insects. An enhanced conceptual understanding of RNAi function in insects will facilitate the application of RNAi for dissection of gene function, and to fast-track the application of RNAi to both control pests and develop effective methods to protect beneficial insects and non-insect arthropods, particularly the honey bee (Apis mellifera) and cultured Pacific white shrimp (Litopenaeus vannamei) from viral and parasitic diseases.

  2. Molecular developmental evidence for a subcoxal origin of pleurites in insects and identity of the subcoxa in the gnathal appendages

    PubMed Central

    Coulcher, Joshua F.; Edgecombe, Gregory D.; Telford, Maximilian J.

    2015-01-01

    Pleurites are chitinous plates in the body wall of insects and myriapods. They are believed to be an adaptation to locomotion on land but their developmental and evolutionary origins are unclear. A widely endorsed explanation for their origin is through toughening pre-existing parts of the body wall; in contrast, the subcoxal theory suggests pleurites derive from a redeployment of the proximal-most section of the leg, the subcoxa. Here, by studying expression of appendage patterning genes in embryos and larvae of the beetle Tribolium castaneum, we provide the first molecular evidence for the existence of a cryptic subcoxal segment in developing legs. We follow this structure during development and show that the embryonic subcoxa later forms the pleurites of the larva as predicted by the subcoxal theory. Our data also demonstrate that subcoxal segments are present in all post-antennal appendages, including the first molecular evidence of a two-segmented mandible with a subcoxal segment in insects. PMID:26507752

  3. Hearing in Insects.

    PubMed

    Göpfert, Martin C; Hennig, R Matthias

    2016-01-01

    Insect hearing has independently evolved multiple times in the context of intraspecific communication and predator detection by transforming proprioceptive organs into ears. Research over the past decade, ranging from the biophysics of sound reception to molecular aspects of auditory transduction to the neuronal mechanisms of auditory signal processing, has greatly advanced our understanding of how insects hear. Apart from evolutionary innovations that seem unique to insect hearing, parallels between insect and vertebrate auditory systems have been uncovered, and the auditory sensory cells of insects and vertebrates turned out to be evolutionarily related. This review summarizes our current understanding of insect hearing. It also discusses recent advances in insect auditory research, which have put forward insect auditory systems for studying biological aspects that extend beyond hearing, such as cilium function, neuronal signal computation, and sensory system evolution.

  4. Neural network applications in an Environmental and Molecular Sciences Laboratory

    SciTech Connect

    Keller, R.E.; Kouzes, R.T.; Kangas, L.J.

    1993-07-01

    The construction of the Environmental and Molecular Sciences Laboratory (EMSL) at the Pacific Northwest Laboratory is currently in the planning stages. This facility will assist in the overall environmental restoration and waste management mission at the Hanford Site by providing basic and applied research support. This paper identifies several applications in the Envirorunental and Molecular Sciences Laboratory where neural network solutions can potentially be beneficial. These applications including real-time sensor data acquisition and analysis, spectral analysis, process control, theoretical modeling, and data compression.

  5. Teaching with Insects: An Applied Life Science Course for Supporting Prospective Elementary Teachers' Scientific Inquiry

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Haefner, Leigh A.; Friedrichsen, Patricia Meis; Zembal-Saul, Carla

    2006-01-01

    The National Science Education Standards (National Research Council [NRC], 1996) call for a greater emphasis on scientific inquiry in K-12 science classes. The Inquiry Standards recommend that students be engaged with scientific questions in which they collect and interpret data, give priority to evidence to construct explanations, test those…

  6. Environmental and Molecular Science Laboratory Arrow

    SciTech Connect

    2016-06-24

    Arrows is a software package that combines NWChem, SQL and NOSQL databases, email, and social networks (e.g. Twitter, Tumblr) that simplifies molecular and materials modeling and makes these modeling capabilities accessible to all scientists and engineers. EMSL Arrows is very simple to use. The user just emails chemical reactions to arrows@emsl.pnnl.gov and then an email is sent back with thermodynamic, reaction pathway (kinetic), spectroscopy, and other results. EMSL Arrows parses the email and then searches the database for the compounds in the reactions. If a compound isn't there, an NWChem calculation is setup and submitted to calculate it. Once the calculation is finished the results are entered into the database and then results are emailed back.

  7. Molecular forms and subunit structure of the acetylcholine receptor in the central nervous system of insects.

    PubMed

    Breer, H; Kleene, R; Hinz, G

    1985-12-01

    The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor as probed by alpha-bungarotoxin binding has been isolated from detergent-solubilized ganglionic membrane preparations from the insect, Locusta migratoria. The isolation and characterization of the receptor protein was achieved by preparation of membrane fragments, extraction by sodium deoxycholate, centrifugation on sucrose density gradient, affinity chromatography, gel electrophoresis, and immunoblotting. The purified receptor protein migrated as a single band on polyacrylamide when native (Mr = 250,000 to 300,000) but also under denaturing conditions (Mr = 65,000) and cross-reacted with some monoclonal antibodies against the Torpedo receptor. In immunohistochemical approaches using polyclonal antibodies the acetylcholine receptor antigenic sites could topochemically be identified at very distinct zones in the neuropil of locust ganglia. The results suggest that the acetylcholine receptor in the central nervous system of insects represents an oligomeric complex composed of four identical or very similar subunits and thus may represent a prototype of the recently proposed homo-oligomeric ancestral acetylcholine receptor.

  8. Effects of DNA Methylation and Chromatin State on Rates of Molecular Evolution in Insects

    PubMed Central

    Glastad, Karl M.; Goodisman, Michael A. D.; Yi, Soojin V.; Hunt, Brendan G.

    2015-01-01

    Epigenetic information is widely appreciated for its role in gene regulation in eukaryotic organisms. However, epigenetic information can also influence genome evolution. Here, we investigate the effects of epigenetic information on gene sequence evolution in two disparate insects: the fly Drosophila melanogaster, which lacks substantial DNA methylation, and the ant Camponotus floridanus, which possesses a functional DNA methylation system. We found that DNA methylation was positively correlated with the synonymous substitution rate in C. floridanus, suggesting a key effect of DNA methylation on patterns of gene evolution. However, our data suggest the link between DNA methylation and elevated rates of synonymous substitution was explained, in large part, by the targeting of DNA methylation to genes with signatures of transcriptionally active chromatin, rather than the mutational effect of DNA methylation itself. This phenomenon may be explained by an elevated mutation rate for genes residing in transcriptionally active chromatin, or by increased structural constraints on genes in inactive chromatin. This result highlights the importance of chromatin structure as the primary epigenetic driver of genome evolution in insects. Overall, our study demonstrates how different epigenetic systems contribute to variation in the rates of coding sequence evolution. PMID:26637432

  9. Insects and low temperatures: from molecular biology to distributions and abundance.

    PubMed Central

    Bale, J S

    2002-01-01

    Insects are the most diverse fauna on earth, with different species occupying a range of terrestrial and aquatic habitats from the tropics to the poles. Species inhabiting extreme low-temperature environments must either tolerate or avoid freezing to survive. While much is now known about the synthesis, biochemistry and function of the main groups of cryoprotectants involved in the seasonal processes of acclimatization and winter cold hardiness (ice-nucleating agents, polyols and antifreeze proteins), studies on the structural biology of these compounds have been more limited. The recent discovery of rapid cold-hardening, ice-interface desiccation and the daily resetting of critical thermal thresholds affecting mortality and mobility have emphasized the role of temperature as the most important abiotic factor, acting through physiological processes to determine ecological outcomes. These relationships are seen in key areas such as species responses to climate warming, forecasting systems for pest outbreaks and the establishment potential of alien species in new environments. PMID:12171648

  10. Molecular phylogeny of the megadiverse insect infraorder Bibionomorpha sensu lato (Diptera)

    PubMed Central

    Kaspřák, David; Mantič, Michal; Fitzgerald, Scott; Ševčíková, Tereza; Tóthová, Andrea; Jaschhof, Mathias

    2016-01-01

    The phylogeny of the insect infraorder Bibionomorpha (Diptera) is reconstructed based on the combined analysis of three nuclear (18S, 28S, CAD) and three mitochondrial (12S, 16S, COI) gene markers. All the analyses strongly support the monophyly of Bibionomorpha in both the narrow (sensu stricto) and the broader (sensu lato) concepts. The major lineages of Bibionomorpha sensu lato (Sciaroidea, Bibionoidea, Anisopodoidea, and Scatopsoidea) and most of the included families are supported as monophyletic groups. Axymyiidae was not found to be part of Bibionomorpha nor was it found to be its sister group. Bibionidae was paraphyletic with respect to Hesperinidae and Keroplatidae was paraphyletic with respect to Lygistorrhinidae. The included Sciaroidea incertae sedis (except Ohakunea Edwards) were found to belong to one clade, but the relationships within this group and its position within Sciaroidea require further study. PMID:27781163

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

    PubMed

    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.

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

    PubMed

    Gilles, Jeremie R L; Schetelig, Marc F; Scolari, Francesca; Marec, František; Capurro, Margareth L; Franz, Gerald; Bourtzis, Kostas

    2014-04-01

    When considering a mosquito release programme, one of the first issues to be addressed is how to eliminate/separate the females. The greatest number of options might eventually be available for those who can use transgenic mosquitoes, but the inherent characteristics of the target species may also provide possibilities for interim measures until more efficient methods can be developed. Differences in intrinsic size, in behaviour and in development rate between females and males are often available and useful for sexing. Efficient species-specific systems for eliminating females at the embryo stage have been developed, but most have since been discarded due to lack of use. Ideal systems specifically kill female embryos using some treatment that can be manipulated during production. Such killing systems are far more efficient than using intrinsic sexual differences, but they systems require selectable genetic markers and sex-linkage created by rare random chromosomal rearrangements. While intrinsic sexual differences should not be considered as long-term candidates for the development of robust and efficient sexing approaches, in the absence of these, the accessibility and integration of less efficient systems can provide a stop-gap measure that allows rapid start up with a minimum of investment. The International Atomic Energy Agency is funding over a 5 year period (2013-2018) a new Coordinated Research Project on "Exploring Genetic, Molecular, Mechanical and Behavioural Methods of Sex Separation in Mosquitoes" to network researchers and to address the critical need of genetic sexing strains for the implementation of the sterile insect technique (using radiation-sterilised or transgenic male mosquitoes) and for insect incompatibility technique programmes against disease-transmitting mosquitoes.

  13. Rat acid phosphatase: overexpression of active, secreted enzyme by recombinant baculovirus-infected insect cells, molecular properties, and crystallization.

    PubMed Central

    Vihko, P; Kurkela, R; Porvari, K; Herrala, A; Lindfors, A; Lindqvist, Y; Schneider, G

    1993-01-01

    Rat prostatic acid phosphatase (rPAP; orthophosphoric-monoester phosphohydrolase (acid optimum), EC 3.1.3.2) was expressed in the baculovirus expression vector system. Recombinant protein was secreted into the medium at a high yield by infected insect cells, which were cultured at high density in a 30-liter bioreactor allowing high oxygen content for rapidly growing cells. About 20% of the cell protein produced was rPAP. Partial sequence determination of the N terminus of the purified recombinant secreted protein revealed identity to the native secreted protein, showing that the signal peptide is recognized and properly cleaved in insect cells. The enzyme was purified by using L-(+)-tartrate affinity chromatography. The purified protein had a high specific activity of 2620 mumol.min-1.mg-1 with p-nitrophenyl phosphate at the substrate, and it also showed phosphotyrosine phosphatase activity. The molecular mass of the recombinant rPAP was 155 kDa. Two subunits of 46 kDa and 48 kDa could be detected in SDS/PAGE, but only one subunit of 41 kDa was present after digestion with N-glycosidase. The active enzyme is a trimer of subunits differing only in glycosylation. When recombinant rPAP was crystallized with polyethylene glycol 6000 as the precipitant, the crystals were trigonal (space group P3(1)21) with cell dimensions a = 89.4 A and c = 152.0 A. The observed diffraction pattern extends to a resolution of at least 3 A. Images PMID:8430088

  14. Revisiting the insect mitochondrial molecular clock: the mid-Aegean trench calibration.

    PubMed

    Papadopoulou, Anna; Anastasiou, Ioannis; Vogler, Alfried P

    2010-07-01

    Phylogenetic trees in insects are frequently dated by applying a "standard" mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) clock estimated at 2.3% My(-1), but despite its wide use reliable calibration points have been lacking. Here, we used a well-established biogeographic barrier, the mid-Aegean trench separating the western and eastern Aegean archipelago, to estimate substitution rates in tenebrionid beetles. Cytochrome oxidase I (cox1) for six codistributed genera across 28 islands (444 individuals) on both sides of the mid-Aegean trench revealed 60 independently coalescing entities delimited with a mixed Yule-coalescent model. One representative per entity was used for phylogenetic analysis of mitochondrial (cox1, 16S rRNA) and nuclear (Mp20, 28S rRNA) genes. Six nodes marked geographically congruent east-west splits whose separation was largely contemporaneous and likely to reflect the formation of the mid-Aegean trench at 9-12 Mya. Based on these "known" dates, a divergence rate of 3.54% My(-1) for the cox1 gene (2.69% when combined with the 16S rRNA gene) was obtained under the preferred partitioning scheme and substitution model selected using Bayes factors. An extensive survey suggests that discrepancies in mtDNA substitution rates in the entomological literature can be attributed to the use of different substitution models, the use of different mitochondrial gene regions, mixing of intraspecific with interspecific data, and not accounting for variance in coalescent times or postseparation gene flow. Different treatments of these factors in the literature confound estimates of mtDNA substitution rates in opposing directions and obscure lineage-specific differences in rates when comparing data from various sources.

  15. The biological function of an insect antifreeze protein simulated by molecular dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Kuiper, Michael J; Morton, Craig J; Abraham, Sneha E; Gray-Weale, Angus

    2015-01-01

    Antifreeze proteins (AFPs) protect certain cold-adapted organisms from freezing to death by selectively adsorbing to internal ice crystals and inhibiting ice propagation. The molecular details of AFP adsorption-inhibition is uncertain but is proposed to involve the Gibbs–Thomson effect. Here we show by using unbiased molecular dynamics simulations a protein structure-function mechanism for the spruce budworm Choristoneura fumiferana AFP, including stereo-specific binding and consequential melting and freezing inhibition. The protein binds indirectly to the prism ice face through a linear array of ordered water molecules that are structurally distinct from the ice. Mutation of the ice binding surface disrupts water-ordering and abolishes activity. The adsorption is virtually irreversible, and we confirm the ice growth inhibition is consistent with the Gibbs–Thomson law. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.05142.001 PMID:25951514

  16. Molecular determinants on the insect sodium channel for the specific action of type II pyrethroid insecticides

    SciTech Connect

    Du Yuzhe; Nomura, Yoshiko; Luo Ningguang; Liu Zhiqi; Lee, Jung-Eun; Khambay, Bhupinder; Dong Ke

    2009-01-15

    Pyrethroid insecticides are classified as type I or type II based on their distinct symptomology and effects on sodium channel gating. Structurally, type II pyrethroids possess an {alpha}-cyano group at the phenylbenzyl alcohol position, which is lacking in type I pyrethroids. Both type I and type II pyrethroids inhibit deactivation consequently prolonging the opening of sodium channels. However, type II pyrethroids inhibit the deactivation of sodium channels to a greater extent than type I pyrethroids inducing much slower decaying of tail currents upon repolarization. The molecular basis of a type II-specific action, however, is not known. Here we report the identification of a residue G{sup 1111} and two positively charged lysines immediately downstream of G{sup 1111} in the intracellular linker connecting domains II and III of the cockroach sodium channel that are specifically involved in the action of type II pyrethroids, but not in the action of type I pyrethroids. Deletion of G{sup 1111}, a consequence of alternative splicing, reduced the sodium channel sensitivity to type II pyrethroids, but had no effect on channel sensitivity to type I pyrethroids. Interestingly, charge neutralization or charge reversal of two positively charged lysines (Ks) downstream of G{sup 1111} had a similar effect. These results provide the molecular insight into the type II-specific interaction of pyrethroids with the sodium channel at the molecular level.

  17. Molecular Signatures in Arabidopsis thaliana in Response to Insect Attack and Bacterial Infection

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

    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 biotic stress and

  18. SLAC All Access: Atomic, Molecular and Optical Science Instrument

    ScienceCinema

    Bozek, John

    2016-07-12

    John Bozek, a staff scientist at SLAC's Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) X-ray laser who manages the LCLS Soft X-ray Department, takes us behind the scenes at the Atomic, Molecular and Optical Science (AMO) instrument, the first of six experimental stations now operating at LCLS. Samples used in AMO experiments include atoms, molecules, clusters, and nanoscale objects such as protein crystals or viruses. Science performed at AMO includes fundamental studies of light-matter interactions in the extreme X-ray intensity of the LCLS pules, time-resolved studies of increasingly charged states of atoms and molecules, X-ray diffraction imaging of nanocrystals, and single-shot imaging of a variety of objects.

  19. SLAC All Access: Atomic, Molecular and Optical Science Instrument

    SciTech Connect

    Bozek, John

    2013-11-05

    John Bozek, a staff scientist at SLAC's Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) X-ray laser who manages the LCLS Soft X-ray Department, takes us behind the scenes at the Atomic, Molecular and Optical Science (AMO) instrument, the first of six experimental stations now operating at LCLS. Samples used in AMO experiments include atoms, molecules, clusters, and nanoscale objects such as protein crystals or viruses. Science performed at AMO includes fundamental studies of light-matter interactions in the extreme X-ray intensity of the LCLS pules, time-resolved studies of increasingly charged states of atoms and molecules, X-ray diffraction imaging of nanocrystals, and single-shot imaging of a variety of objects.

  20. Molecular mechanisms of thermal resistance of the insect trypanosomatid Crithidia thermophila

    PubMed Central

    Ishemgulova, Aygul; Butenko, Anzhelika; Kortišová, Lucie; Boucinha, Carolina; Grybchuk-Ieremenko, Anastasiia; Morelli, Karina A.; Tesařová, Martina; Kraeva, Natalya; Grybchuk, Danyil; Pánek, Tomáš; Flegontov, Pavel; Lukeš, Julius; Votýpka, Jan; Pavan, Márcio Galvão; Opperdoes, Fred R.; Spodareva, Viktoria; d'Avila-Levy, Claudia M.; Kostygov, Alexei Yu.

    2017-01-01

    In the present work, we investigated molecular mechanisms governing thermal resistance of a monoxenous trypanosomatid Crithidia luciliae thermophila, which we reclassified as a separate species C. thermophila. We analyzed morphology, growth kinetics, and transcriptomic profiles of flagellates cultivated at low (23°C) and elevated (34°C) temperature. When maintained at high temperature, they grew significantly faster, became shorter, with genes involved in sugar metabolism and mitochondrial stress protection significantly upregulated. Comparison with another thermoresistant monoxenous trypanosomatid, Leptomonas seymouri, revealed dramatic differences in transcription profiles of the two species with only few genes showing the same expression pattern. This disparity illustrates differences in the biology of these two parasites and distinct mechanisms of their thermotolerance, a prerequisite for living in warm-blooded vertebrates. PMID:28328988

  1. Molecular mechanisms of thermal resistance of the insect trypanosomatid Crithidia thermophila.

    PubMed

    Ishemgulova, Aygul; Butenko, Anzhelika; Kortišová, Lucie; Boucinha, Carolina; Grybchuk-Ieremenko, Anastasiia; Morelli, Karina A; Tesařová, Martina; Kraeva, Natalya; Grybchuk, Danyil; Pánek, Tomáš; Flegontov, Pavel; Lukeš, Julius; Votýpka, Jan; Pavan, Márcio Galvão; Opperdoes, Fred R; Spodareva, Viktoria; d'Avila-Levy, Claudia M; Kostygov, Alexei Yu; Yurchenko, Vyacheslav

    2017-01-01

    In the present work, we investigated molecular mechanisms governing thermal resistance of a monoxenous trypanosomatid Crithidia luciliae thermophila, which we reclassified as a separate species C. thermophila. We analyzed morphology, growth kinetics, and transcriptomic profiles of flagellates cultivated at low (23°C) and elevated (34°C) temperature. When maintained at high temperature, they grew significantly faster, became shorter, with genes involved in sugar metabolism and mitochondrial stress protection significantly upregulated. Comparison with another thermoresistant monoxenous trypanosomatid, Leptomonas seymouri, revealed dramatic differences in transcription profiles of the two species with only few genes showing the same expression pattern. This disparity illustrates differences in the biology of these two parasites and distinct mechanisms of their thermotolerance, a prerequisite for living in warm-blooded vertebrates.

  2. Purification, biochemistry and molecular cloning of an insect glycosylasparaginase from Spodoptera frugiperda.

    PubMed

    Liu, Y; Dunn, G S; Aronson, N N

    1996-07-01

    Glycosylasparaginase (EC 3.5.1.26) from Sf9 cells (Spodoptera frugiperda) was purified to homogeneity with a specific activity of 2.1 unit/mg. The enzyme is composed of two non-identical alpha/beta subunits joined by strong non-covalent forces and has one glycosylation site located in the alpha subunit. Molecular masses of the subunits were determined to be 28 kDa and 17 kDa by SDS-PAGE. Native enzyme existed in quaternary structures of either heterodimer (alpha beta) or heterotetramer (alpha 2 beta 2). These forms exhibited different ionic characteristics during DE52 anion exchange chromatography, and their molecular masses were determined to be 47 kDa and 101 kDa by gel filtration. The enzyme was thermostable, requiring 65-70 degrees C to be denatured, and it had a broad pH optimum from 4-10.5 with a pKa around 6. SDS easily inactivated the enzyme. The K(m) of glycosylasparaginase for its normal substrate GlcNAc-Asn was 0.88 mM. The enzyme also exhibited asparaginase activity with a K(m) of 3.0 mM for asparagine. N-terminal amino acids of the denatured subunits were sequenced and degenerate primers were designed for cloning its cDNA using PCR and 5' and 3' RACE. Glycosylasparaginase cDNAs from bovine and rat were also cloned using similar strategies, and primary structures of glycosylasparaginases from six species (human, bovine, rat, mouse, Sf9 cells and Flavobacterium) have been compared and related to a recent crystal structure of the human enzyme.

  3. How Do Insects Help the Environment?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hevel, Gary

    2005-01-01

    There are some 5 to 30 million insect species estimated in the world--and the majority of these have yet to be collected or named by science! Of course, the most well known insects are those that cause disease or compete for human agricultural products, but these insects represent only a small fraction of the world's insect population. In reality,…

  4. Building a Collaboratory in Environmental and Molecular Science

    SciTech Connect

    Kouzes, R.T.; Myers, J.D.; Devaney, D.M.; Dunning, T.H.; Wise, J.A.

    1994-03-01

    A Collaboratory is a meta-laboratory that spans multiple geographical areas with collaborators interacting via electronic means. Collaboratories are designed to enable close ties between scientists in a given research area, promote collaborations involving scientists in diverse areas, accelerate the development and dissemination of basic knowledge, and minimize the time-lag between discovery and application. PNL is developing the concept of an Environmental and Molecular Sciences Collaboratory (EMSC) as a natural evolution of the EMSL project. The goal of the EMSC is to increase the efficiency of research and reduce the time required to implement new environmental remediation and preservation technologies. The EMSC will leverage the resources (intellectual and physical) of the EMSL by making them more accessible to remote collaborators as well as by making the resources of remote sites available to local researchers. It will provide a common set of computer hardware and software tools to support remote collaboration, a key step in establishing a collaborative culture for scientists in the theoretical, computational, and experimental molecular sciences across the nation. In short, the EMSC will establish and support an `electronic community of scientists researching and developing innovative environmental preservation and restoration technologies.

  5. The Development of New User Research Capabilities in Environmental Molecular Science: Workshop Report

    SciTech Connect

    Felmy, Andrew R.; Baer, Donald R.; Fredrickson, Jim K.; Gephart, Roy E.; Rosso, Kevin M.

    2006-10-31

    On August 1, and 2, 2006, 104 scientists representing 40 institutions including 24 Universities and 5 National Laboratories gathered at the W.R. Wiley Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory, a National scientific user facility, to outline important science challenges for the next decade and identify major capabilities needed to pursue advanced research in the environmental molecular sciences. EMSL’s four science themes served as the framework for the workshop. The four science themes are 1) Biological Interactions and Interfaces, 2) Geochemistry/Biogeochemistry and Surface Science, 3) Atmospheric Aerosol Chemistry, and 4) Science of Interfacial Phenomena.

  6. Exploring Insect Vision

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Damonte, Kathleen

    2005-01-01

    A fly is buzzing around in the kitchen. You sneak up on it with a flyswatter, but just as you get close to it, it flies away. What makes flies and other insects so good at escaping from danger? The fact that insects have eyesight that can easily detect moving objects is one of the things that help them survive. In this month's Science Shorts,…

  7. Molecular imprinted polymers for separation science: a review of reviews.

    PubMed

    Cheong, Won Jo; Yang, Song Hee; Ali, Faiz

    2013-02-01

    Molecular imprinted polymer is an artificial receptor made by imprinting molecules of a template in a polymer matrix followed by removing the template molecules via thorough washing to give the permanent template grooves. They show favored affinity to the template molecule compared to other molecules, and this property is the basic driving force for such diverse application of this techniques. Such techniques have been increasingly employed in a wide scope of applications such as chromatography, sample pretreatment, purification, catalysts, sensors, and drug delivery, etc., mostly in bioanalytical areas. A major part of them is related to development of new stationary phases and their application in chromatography and sample pretreatment. Embodiments of molecular imprinted polymer materials have been carried out in a variety of forms such as irregularly ground particles, regular spherical particles, nanoparticles, monoliths in a stainless steel or capillary column, open tubular layers in capillaries, surface attached thin layers, membranes, and composites, etc. There have been numerous review articles on molecular imprinted polymer issues. In this special review, the reviews in recent ca. 10 years will be categorized into several subgroups according to specified topics in separation science, and each review in each subgroup will be introduced in the order of date with brief summaries and comments on new developments and different scopes of prospects. Brief summaries of each categories and conclusive future perspectives are also given.

  8. Molecular structure of a gypsy element of Drosophila subobscura (gypsyDs) constituting a degenerate form of insect retroviruses.

    PubMed Central

    Alberola, T M; de Frutos, R

    1996-01-01

    We have determined the nucleotide sequence of a 7.5 kb full-size gypsy element from Drosophila subobscura strain H-271. Comparative analyses were carried out on the sequence and molecular structure of gypsy elements of D.subobscura (gypsyDs), D.melanogaster (gypsyDm) and D.virilis (gypsyDv). The three elements show a structure that maintains a common mechanism of expression. ORF1 and ORF2 show typical motifs of gag and pol genes respectively in the three gypsy elements and could encode functional proteins necessary for intracellular expansion. In the three ORF1 proteins an arginine-rich region was found which could constitute a RNA binding motif. The main differences among the gypsy elements are found in ORF3 (env-like gene); gypsyDm encodes functional env proteins, whereas gypsyDs and gypsyDv ORF3s lack some motifs essential for functionality of this protein. On the basis of these results, while gypsyDm is the first insect retrovirus described, gypsyDs and gypsyDv could constitute degenerate forms of these retroviruses. In this context, we have found some evidence that gypsyDm could have recently infected some D.subobscura strains. Comparative analyses of divergence and phylogenetic relationships of gypsy elements indicate that the gypsy elements belonging to species of different subgenera (gypsyDs and gypsyDv) are closer than gypsy elements of species belonging to the same subgenus (gypsyDs and gypsyDm). These data are congruent with horizontal transfer of gypsy elements among different Drosophila spp. PMID:8600460

  9. An electrostatic storage ring for atomic and molecular science

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tanabe, T.; Chida, K.; Noda, K.; Watanabe, I.

    2002-04-01

    An electrostatic storage ring with a circumference of 8.1 m was designed for the research of atomic and molecular science. The race-track ring consists of two 160° deflectors, four 10° deflectors and four quadrupole doublets. For the 160° deflectors, a cylindrical shape has been adopted. In this ring, there are four types of stable regions with and without waists of the beam envelope in the middle of the deflectors. A beam test was performed with 20-keV ion beams from an ECR ion source. The observed lifetimes of beams stored in each stable region were different under the same conditions, except for the tune values. The lifetimes did not depend much on the injected beam intensity for a current of less than about 100 nA. The design and performance of the electrostatic storage ring are presented.

  10. Translational biophysics: the physical sciences in molecular medicine.

    PubMed

    Ryadnov, Maxim G; Cerasoli, Eleonora; Martyna, Glenn J; Crain, Jason

    2010-11-01

    Traditional approaches of medicinal chemistry focus on finding novel structures possessing desired biological properties, or on relating chemical details to a particular biological function. Here the aim is to hit the therapeutic target of interest rather than to understand and exploit its origin. Consequently, molecular mechanisms underlying the disease are of much lesser concern, with intuitive designs continuing to be most successful. Physical sciences can offer alternative ways of tackling the problem by establishing structural continuums between different time and length scales spanning physical phenomena of life processes and their disorders. This can be achieved by the use of approximated physical models providing a rationale for interconversions between different but related scales, which can further be extended with chemical details obtained from complementary experimental data.

  11. Molecular nutrition research: the modern way of performing nutritional science.

    PubMed

    Norheim, Frode; Gjelstad, Ingrid Merethe Fange; Hjorth, Marit; Vinknes, Kathrine J; Langleite, Torgrim M; Holen, Torgeir; Jensen, Jørgen; Dalen, Knut Tomas; Karlsen, Anette S; Kielland, Anders; Rustan, Arild C; Drevon, Christian A

    2012-12-03

    In spite of amazing progress in food supply and nutritional science, and a striking increase in life expectancy of approximately 2.5 months per year in many countries during the previous 150 years, modern nutritional research has a great potential of still contributing to improved health for future generations, granted that the revolutions in molecular and systems technologies are applied to nutritional questions. Descriptive and mechanistic studies using state of the art epidemiology, food intake registration, genomics with single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and epigenomics, transcriptomics, proteomics, metabolomics, advanced biostatistics, imaging, calorimetry, cell biology, challenge tests (meals, exercise, etc.), and integration of all data by systems biology, will provide insight on a much higher level than today in a field we may name molecular nutrition research. To take advantage of all the new technologies scientists should develop international collaboration and gather data in large open access databases like the suggested Nutritional Phenotype database (dbNP). This collaboration will promote standardization of procedures (SOP), and provide a possibility to use collected data in future research projects. The ultimate goals of future nutritional research are to understand the detailed mechanisms of action for how nutrients/foods interact with the body and thereby enhance health and treat diet-related diseases.

  12. Introducing Molecular Life Science Students to Model Building Using Computer Simulations

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Aegerter-Wilmsen, Tinri; Kettenis, Dik; Sessink, Olivier; Hartog, Rob; Bisseling, Ton; Janssen, Fred

    2006-01-01

    Computer simulations can facilitate the building of models of natural phenomena in research, such as in the molecular life sciences. In order to introduce molecular life science students to the use of computer simulations for model building, a digital case was developed in which students build a model of a pattern formation process in…

  13. Molecular metal catalysts on supports: organometallic chemistry meets surface science.

    PubMed

    Serna, Pedro; Gates, Bruce C

    2014-08-19

    -support bonding and structure, which identify the supports as ligands with electron-donor properties that influence reactivity and catalysis. Each of the catalyst design variables has been varied independently, illustrated by mononuclear and tetranuclear iridium on zeolite HY and on MgO and by isostructural rhodium and iridium (diethylene or dicarbonyl) complexes on these supports. The data provide examples resolving the roles of the catalyst design variables and place the catalysis science on a firm foundation of organometallic chemistry linked with surface science. Supported molecular catalysts offer the advantages of characterization in the absence of solvents and with surface-science methods that do not require ultrahigh vacuum. Families of supported metal complexes have been made by replacement of ligands with others from the gas phase. Spectroscopically identified catalytic reaction intermediates help to elucidate catalyst performance and guide design. The methods are illustrated for supported complexes and clusters of rhodium, iridium, osmium, and gold used to catalyze reactions of small molecules that facilitate identification of the ligands present during catalysis: alkene dimerization and hydrogenation, H-D exchange in the reaction of H2 with D2, and CO oxidation. The approach is illustrated with the discovery of a highly active and selective MgO-supported rhodium carbonyl dimer catalyst for hydrogenation of 1,3-butadiene to give butenes.

  14. Insect Allergy.

    PubMed

    Lee, Hobart; Halverson, Sara; Mackey, Regina

    2016-09-01

    Insect bites and stings are common. Risk factors are mostly associated with environmental exposure. Most insect bites and stings result in mild, local, allergic reactions. Large local reactions and systemic reactions like anaphylaxis are possible. Common insects that bite or sting include mosquitoes, ticks, flies, fleas, biting midges, bees, and wasps. The diagnosis is made clinically. Identification of the insect should occur when possible. Management is usually supportive. For anaphylaxis, patients should be given epinephrine and transported to the emergency department for further evaluation. Venom immunotherapy (VIT) has several different protocols. VIT is highly effective in reducing systemic reactions and anaphylaxis.

  15. Evolution of the Insects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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

  16. Molecular and insecticidal characterization of a Cry1I protein toxic to insects of the families Noctuidae, Tortricidae, Plutellidae, and Chrysomelidae.

    PubMed

    Ruiz de Escudero, Iñigo; Estela, Anna; Porcar, Manuel; Martínez, Clara; Oguiza, José A; Escriche, Baltasar; Ferré, Juan; Caballero, Primitivo

    2006-07-01

    The most notable characteristic of Bacillus thuringiensis is its ability to produce insecticidal proteins. More than 300 different proteins have been described with specific activity against insect species. We report the molecular and insecticidal characterization of a novel cry gene encoding a protein of the Cry1I group with toxic activity towards insects of the families Noctuidae, Tortricidae, Plutellidae, and Chrysomelidae. PCR analysis detected a DNA sequence with an open reading frame of 2.2 kb which encodes a protein with a molecular mass of 80.9 kDa. Trypsin digestion of this protein resulted in a fragment of ca. 60 kDa, typical of activated Cry1 proteins. The deduced sequence of the protein has homologies of 96.1% with Cry1Ia1, 92.8% with Cry1Ib1, and 89.6% with Cry1Ic1. According to the Cry protein classification criteria, this protein was named Cry1Ia7. The expression of the gene in Escherichia coli resulted in a protein that was water soluble and toxic to several insect species. The 50% lethal concentrations for larvae of Earias insulana, Lobesia botrana, Plutella xylostella, and Leptinotarsa decemlineata were 21.1, 8.6, 12.3, and 10.0 microg/ml, respectively. Binding assays with biotinylated toxins to E. insulana and L. botrana midgut membrane vesicles revealed that Cry1Ia7 does not share binding sites with Cry1Ab or Cry1Ac proteins, which are commonly present in B. thuringiensis-treated crops and commercial B. thuringiensis-based bioinsecticides. We discuss the potential of Cry1Ia7 as an active ingredient which can be used in combination with Cry1Ab or Cry1Ac in pest control and the management of resistance to B. thuringiensis toxins.

  17. Undergraduates' mental models about insect anatomy and insect life cycles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Diaz, Arlene Edith

    Educational studies focused on students' alternative conceptions have shown the importance of developing strategies to correct understanding. Identifying and comprehending student mental models are important since they may reflect alternate conceptions about scientific concepts. Mental models have been identified in various science education studies, but little is known about mental models undergraduates hold about insects. This research is significant because it identified mental models undergraduates have about insect anatomy and insect life cycles, exposed students to cognitive conflict by having them complete an online insect tutorial, and analyzed the effectiveness of this insect tutorial in correcting student understanding. An insect assessment was developed and administered pre- and post-instruction to probe students' mental models about insects. Different numbers of undergraduate students participated in different parts of the assessment; 276, 249, 166, and 58 students participated in the listing, drawing. definition, and life cycle parts of the assessment, respectively. The tutorial contained a variety of manipulated insect and non-insect images that challenged the students' understanding and generated cognitive conflict. This intervention guided students in replacing alternate conceptions with correct understanding. It was hypothesized that the tutorial would have a positive impact on student learning about insects. The results suggest that the tutorial had a positive impact on learning.

  18. Insect Keepers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    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…

  19. Insect phylogenomics.

    PubMed

    Behura, S K

    2015-08-01

    Phylogenomics, the integration of phylogenetics with genome data, has emerged as a powerful approach to study the evolution and systematics of species. Recently, several studies employing phylogenomic tools have provided better insights into insect evolution. Next-generation sequencing methods are now increasingly used by entomologists to generate genomic and transcript sequences of various insect species and strains. These data provide opportunities for comparative genomics and large-scale multigene phylogenies of diverse lineages of insects. Phy-logenomic investigations help us to better understand systematic and evolutionary relationships of insect species that play important roles as herbivores, predators, detritivores, pollinators and disease vectors. It is important that we critically assess the prospects and limitations of phylogenomic methods. In this review, I describe the current status, outline the major challenges and remark on potential future applications of phylogenomic tools in studying insect systematics and evolution.

  20. Insect immunology and hematopoiesis.

    PubMed

    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.

  1. Molecular characterization of a novel vegetative insecticidal protein from Bacillus thuringiensis effective against sap-sucking insect pest.

    PubMed

    Sattar, Sampurna; Maiti, Mrinal K

    2011-09-01

    Several isolates of Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) were screened for the vegetative insecticidal protein (Vip) effective against sap-sucking insect pests. Screening results were based on LC(50) values against cotton aphid (Aphis gossypii), one of the dangerous pests of various crop plants including cotton. Among the isolates, the Bt#BREF24 showed promising results, and upon purification the aphidicidal protein was recognized as a binary toxin. One of the components of this binary toxin was identified by peptide sequencing to be a homolog of Vip2A that has been reported previously in other Bacillus spp. Vip2 belongs to the binary toxin group Vip1-Vip2, and is responsible for the enzymatic activity; and Vip1 is the translocation and receptor binding protein. The two genes encoding the corresponding proteins of the binary toxin, designated as vip2Ae and vip1Ae, were cloned from the Bt#BREF24, sequenced, and heterologously expressed in Escherichia coli. Aphid feeding assay with the recombinant proteins confirmed that these proteins are indeed the two components of the binary toxins, and the presence of both partners is essential for the activity. Aphid specificity of the binary toxin was further verified by ligand blotting experiment, which identified an ~50 kDa receptor in the brush border membrane vesicles of the cotton aphids only, but not in the lepidopteran insects. Our finding holds a promise of its use in future as a candidate gene for developing transgenic crop plants tolerant against sap-sucking insect pests.

  2. Molecular cloning, characterization, and expression pattern of the ultraspiracle gene homolog (RXR/USP) from the hemimetabolous insect Periplaneta americana (Dictyoptera, Blattidae) during vitellogenesis.

    PubMed

    Elgendy, Azza M; Elmogy, Mohamed; Takeda, Makio

    2014-02-01

    Ecdysteroid and sequiterpenoids juvenile hormones play a gonadotrophic role in the insect adult female vitellogenesis. The molecular basis of hormone action has been analyzed in great detail in flies and moths, but rarely in primitive insect orders. The primitive hemimetabolous insect Periplaneta americana was used, as a model, to isolate and characterize, for the first time, two cDNAs of RXR/USP, a component of the heterodimeric ecdysone receptor. These two cDNAs correspond to two isoforms, named PamRXR-S (short form) and PamRXR-L (long form). Both are identical except for 25 amino acids deletion/insertion located in the loop between helices H1 and H3 of the ligand-binding domain. The two isoforms are differentially expressed in different tissues as revealed by RT-PCR and northern blot analysis. In fat body, brain, ovary, and muscle tissues, the predominant form was PamRXR-S, whereas PamRXR-L was abundant in ovaries. The PamRXR transcript was detected during all stages of vitellogenesis in the fat body with different levels. It was little low during the early vitellogenic period (days 2, 3), then a peak of increase was detected during days 4-6 (day 5) which was followed by another peak of increase at the end of vitellogenesis, day 9. We assumed that PamRXR might play a dual role of induction of vitellogenin through JH at early vitellogenesis and suppression through 20E during late vitellogenesis. The present work will pave the way for several other investigations to understand both the ecdysteroid-dependent genetic hierarchy and JH mechanism controlling vitellogenesis in the American cockroach, P. americana.

  3. Molecular identification of Fusarium species isolated from transgenic insect-resistant cotton plants in Mexicali valley, Baja California.

    PubMed

    Gonzalez-Soto, T; González-Mendoza, D; Troncoso-Rojas, R; Morales-Trejo, A; Ceceña-Duran, C; Garcia-Lopez, A; Grimaldo-Juarez, O

    2015-10-02

    Cotton production in the Mexicali valley is adversely affected by wilt and root rot disease associated with Fusarium species. In the present study, we sought to isolate and identify the Fusarium species in the rhizosphere of transgenic insect-resistant cotton plants grown in the Mexicali valley. Our analyses isolated four native fungi from the rhizosphere of cotton plants, namely, T-ICA01, T-ICA03, T-ICA04, and T-ICA08. These fungal isolates were categorized as belonging to Fusarium solani using their phenotypic characteristics and ITS region sequence data. Examination of the infection index showed that T-ICA03 and T-ICA04 caused systemic colonization (90%) of seeds followed by the occurrence of radicle and coleoptile decay. In contrast, T-ICA08 strain was less pathogenic against seed tissues (40%) in comparison to the other strains isolated. Our study showed that in transgenic insect-resistant cotton the disease "Fusarium wilt" is caused by the fungus, F. solani. Future studies are necessary to characterize the F. solani populations to determine whether phenological stages might influence the genetic diversity of the fungal populations present.

  4. The art and science of self-assembling molecular machines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gómez-López, Marcos; Preece, Jon A.; Fraser Stoddart, J.

    1996-09-01

    In this review, we show how noncovalent bonding interactions between 0957-4484/7/3/004/img1-electron rich aromatic ring systems (e.g. hydroquinone) and the 0957-4484/7/3/004/img1-electron deficient tetracationic cyclophane, cyclobis(paraquat-p-phenylene) can be used to self-assemble novel molecular architectures which are not only interesting to us, because of their fascinating topologies, but also because they have the potential to be developed into molecular structures with switchable properties on the nanometre scale. The high efficiency observed in the self-assembly of a [2]catenane, and its dynamic properties in solution, represent the first step in the design and self-assembly of other molecular assemblies better suited for the study of molecular switching processes. Therefore, a series of [2]rotaxanes, mechanically-interlocked molecular compounds, consisting of a linear 0957-4484/7/3/004/img1-electron rich dumbbell-shaped component and the 0957-4484/7/3/004/img1-electron deficient tetracationic cyclophane as the cyclic component, have been self-assembled and evaluated. All of the so-called molecular shuttles show translational isomerism and one of them, comprising benzidine and biphenol recognition sites as the non-degenerate 0957-4484/7/3/004/img1-electron rich sites, shows molecular switching properties when it is perturbed by external stimuli, such as electrons and protons. The versatility of our approach to nanoscale molecular switches is proven by the description of a series of molecular assemblies and supramolecular arrays, consisting of 0957-4484/7/3/004/img1-electron rich and 0957-4484/7/3/004/img1-electron deficient components, which display molecular switching properties when they are influenced by external stimuli that are photochemical, electrochemical and/or chemical in nature. However, the molecular switching phenomena take place in the solution state. Therefore, finally we describe how simple molecular structures can be ordered on to a solid

  5. Insect Phylogenomics

    PubMed Central

    Behura, Susanta K.

    2015-01-01

    With the advent of next-generation sequencing methods, phylogenetics has taken a new turn in the recent years. Phylogenomics, the integration of phylogenetics with genome data, has emerged as a powerful approach to study systematics and evolution of species. Recently, breakthrough researches employing phylogenomic tools have provided better insights into the timing and pattern of insect evolution. The next-generation sequencing methods are now increasingly used by entomologists to generate genomic and transcript sequences of various insect species and strains. These data provide opportunities for comparative genomics and large-scale multigene phylogenies of diverse lineages of insects. Phylogenomic investigations help us better understand systematic and evolutionary relationships of insect species that play important roles as herbivores, predators, detritivores, pollinators, or disease vectors. It is important that we critically assess the prospects and limitations of phylogenomic methods. In this review, I describe the current status, outline the major challenges, and remark on potential future applications of phylogenomic tools in studying insect systematics and evolution. PMID:25963452

  6. Educational challenges of molecular life science: Characteristics and implications for education and research.

    PubMed

    Tibell, Lena A E; Rundgren, Carl-Johan

    2010-01-01

    Molecular life science is one of the fastest-growing fields of scientific and technical innovation, and biotechnology has profound effects on many aspects of daily life-often with deep, ethical dimensions. At the same time, the content is inherently complex, highly abstract, and deeply rooted in diverse disciplines ranging from "pure sciences," such as math, chemistry, and physics, through "applied sciences," such as medicine and agriculture, to subjects that are traditionally within the remit of humanities, notably philosophy and ethics. Together, these features pose diverse, important, and exciting challenges for tomorrow's teachers and educational establishments. With backgrounds in molecular life science research and secondary life science teaching, we (Tibell and Rundgren, respectively) bring different experiences, perspectives, concerns, and awareness of these issues. Taking the nature of the discipline as a starting point, we highlight important facets of molecular life science that are both characteristic of the domain and challenging for learning and education. Of these challenges, we focus most detail on content, reasoning difficulties, and communication issues. We also discuss implications for education research and teaching in the molecular life sciences.

  7. The Insect SNMP Gene Family

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2009-01-01

    The insect SNMP gene family Richard G. Vogt a,*,1, Natalie E. Miller a, Rachel Litvack a, Richard A. Fandino a, Jackson Sparks a, Jon Staples a...Wallace Beltsville Agricultural Research Center Plant Sciences Institute, Invasive Insect Biocontrol and Behavior Laboratory, Bldg. 007, Rm. 030...keywords: Pheromone Receptors Olfactory Gustatory Chemosensory Gustatory Mosquito Fly a b s t r a c t SNMPs are membrane proteins observed to associate with

  8. Perception of insect feeding by plants.

    PubMed

    Bonaventure, G

    2012-11-01

    The recognition of phytophagous insects by plants induces a set of very specific responses aimed at deterring tissue consumption and reprogramming metabolism and development of the plant to tolerate the herbivore. The recognition of insects by plants requires the plant's ability to perceive chemical cues generated by the insects and to distinguish a particular pattern of tissue disruption. Relatively little is known about the molecular basis of insect perception by plants and the signalling mechanisms directly associated with this perception. Importantly, the insect feeding behaviour (piercing-sucking versus chewing) is a decisive determinant of the plant's defence response, and the mechanisms used to perceive insects from different feeding guilds may be distinct. During insect feeding, components of the saliva of chewing or piercing-sucking insects come into contact with plant cells, and elicitors or effectors present in this insect-derived fluid are perceived by plant cells to initiate the activation of specific signalling cascades. Although receptor-ligand interactions controlling insect perception have yet not been molecularly described, a significant number of regulatory components acting downstream of receptors and involved in the activation of defence responses against insects has been reported. Some of these regulators mediate changes in the phytohormone network, while others directly control gene expression or the redox state of the cell. These processes are central in the orchestration of plant defence responses against insects.

  9. Kinetic exchange models: From molecular physics to social science

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Patriarca, Marco; Chakraborti, Anirban

    2013-08-01

    We discuss several multi-agent models that have their origin in the kinetic exchange theory of statistical mechanics and have been recently applied to a variety of problems in the social sciences. This class of models can be easily adapted for simulations in areas other than physics, such as the modeling of income and wealth distributions in economics and opinion dynamics in sociology.

  10. The key molecular events during Macrobrachium rosenbergii nodavirus (MrNV) infection and replication in Sf9 insect cells.

    PubMed

    Somrit, Monsicha; Watthammawut, Atthaboon; Chotwiwatthanakun, Charoonroj; Weerachatyanukul, Wattana

    2016-09-02

    In this study we demonstrated that Macrobrachium rosenbergii nodavirus (MrNV) was able to internalize and replicate in Sf9 insect cells, with levels of infection altered by substances affecting the caveolin-(CAV) mediated endocytosis pathway. The use of Sf9 cells for efficient MrNV replication and propagation was demonstrated by confocal microscopy and PCR amplification, through which early viral binding and internalization were initially detectable at 30min post-infection; whereas at 72h, the distinguishable sign of late-MrNV infection was observable as the gradual accumulation of a cytopathic effect (CPE) in the cells, ultimately resulting in cellular disruption. Moreover, during the early period of infection, the MrNV signals were highly co-localized with CAV1 signals of the CAV-mediated endocytosis pathway. The use of genistein as an inhibitor of the CAV-mediated endocytosis pathway significantly reduced MrNV and CAV1 co-localization, and also reduced the levels of MrNV infection in Sf9 cells as shown by PCR and ELISA. Moreover, the addition of the pathway agonist okadaic acid not only recovered but also augmented both the levels of MrNV co-localization with CAV1 and of Sf9 infection in the presence of genistein inhibition; therefore demonstrating that MrNV infection in Sf9 cells was associated with the CAV-mediated endocytosis pathway machinery.

  11. Molecular analysis of poplar defense against herbivory: comparison of wound- and insect elicitor-induced gene expression.

    PubMed

    Major, Ian T; Constabel, C Peter

    2006-01-01

    In order to characterize defense responses of hybrid poplar (Populus trichocarpax P. deltoides), we profiled leaf transcript patterns elicited by wounding and by regurgitant from forest tent caterpillar (FTC; Malacosoma disstria), a Lepidopteran defoliator of poplars. Macroarrays were used to compare transcript profiles. Both FTC-regurgitant (FTC-R) and mechanical wounding with pliers elicited expression of a variety of genes, and for these genes our analysis indicated that these treatments induced qualitatively similar responses. Similarly, a comparison of responses of directly treated and systemically induced leaves indicated extensive overlap in the sets of induced genes. FTC-R was found to contain the insect-derived elicitor volicitin. The simulated herbivory treatments resulted in the induction of genes involved in poplar defense and secondary metabolism. We also identified wound-responsive genes with roles in primary metabolism, including a putative invertase, lipase, and acyl-activating enzyme; some of these genes may have roles in defense signaling. In addition, we found three unknown genes containing a ZIM motif which may represent novel transcription factors.

  12. The earliest molecular response to stretch of insect flight muscle as revealed by fast X-ray diffraction recording

    PubMed Central

    Iwamoto, Hiroyuki

    2017-01-01

    Small insects drive their flight muscle at frequencies up to 1,000 Hz. This remarkable ability owes to the mechanism of stretch activation. However, it remains unknown as to what sarcomeric component senses the stretch and triggers the following force generation. Here we show that the earliest structural change after a step stretch is reflected in the blinking of the 111 and 201 reflections, as observed in the fast X-ray diffraction recording from isolated bumblebee flight muscle fibers. The same signal has also been observed in live bumblebee. We demonstrate that (1) the signal responds almost concomitantly to a quick step stretch, (2) the signal grows with increasing calcium levels as the stretch-activated force does, and (3) a full 3-dimensional model demonstrates that the signal is maximized when objects having a 38.7-nm actin periodicity travel by ~20 nm along the filament axis. This is the expected displacement if myosin heads are loosely associated with actin target zones (where actin monomers are favorably oriented), and are dragged by a 1.3% stretch, which effectively causes stretch-induced activation. These results support and strengthen our proposal that the myosin head itself acts as the stretch sensor, after calcium-induced association with actin in a low-force form. PMID:28176871

  13. Insect Resistance

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Insect pests exhibit a diverse array of genetic-based responses when interacting with crop systems; these changes can be in response to pathogens, symbiotic microbes, host plants, chemicals, and the environment. Agricultural research has for decades focused on gathering crucial information on the bi...

  14. A Molecular Method to Discriminate between Mass-Reared Sterile and Wild Tsetse Flies during Eradication Programmes That Have a Sterile Insect Technique Component

    PubMed Central

    Pagabeleguem, Soumaïla; Gimonneau, Geoffrey; Seck, Momar Talla; Vreysen, Marc J. B.; Sall, Baba; Rayaissé, Jean-Baptiste; Sidibé, Issa; Bouyer, Jérémy; Ravel, Sophie

    2016-01-01

    Background The Government of Senegal has embarked several years ago on a project that aims to eradicate Glossina palpalis gambiensis from the Niayes area. The removal of the animal trypanosomosis would allow the development more efficient livestock production systems. The project was implemented using an area-wide integrated pest management strategy including a sterile insect technique (SIT) component. The released sterile male flies originated from a colony from Burkina Faso. Methodology/Principal Findings Monitoring the efficacy of the sterile male releases requires the discrimination between wild and sterile male G. p. gambiensis that are sampled in monitoring traps. Before being released, sterile male flies were marked with a fluorescent dye powder. The marking was however not infallible with some sterile flies only slightly marked or some wild flies contaminated with a few dye particles in the monitoring traps. Trapped flies can also be damaged due to predation by ants, making it difficult to discriminate between wild and sterile males using a fluorescence camera and / or a fluorescence microscope. We developed a molecular technique based on the determination of cytochrome oxidase haplotypes of G. p. gambiensis to discriminate between wild and sterile males. DNA was isolated from the head of flies and a portion of the 5’ end of the mitochondrial gene cytochrome oxidase I was amplified to be finally sequenced. Our results indicated that all the sterile males from the Burkina Faso colony displayed the same haplotype and systematically differed from wild male flies trapped in Senegal and Burkina Faso. This allowed 100% discrimination between sterile and wild male G. p. gambiensis. Conclusions/Significance This tool might be useful for other tsetse control campaigns with a SIT component in the framework of the Pan-African Tsetse and Trypanosomosis Eradication Campaign (PATTEC) and, more generally, for other vector or insect pest control programs. PMID:26901049

  15. Plant Defense against Insect Herbivores

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

    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. Insect herbivory induce several internal signals from the wounded tissues, including calcium ion fluxes, phosphorylation cascades and systemic- and jasmonate signaling. These are perceived in undamaged tissues, which thereafter reinforce their defense by producing different, mostly low molecular weight, 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 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 have adapted to resist plant defenses, and in some cases even sequester the compounds and reuse them in their own defense. Both plant defense and insect adaptation involve metabolic costs, so most plant-insect interactions reach a stand-off, where both host and herbivore survive although their development is suboptimal. PMID:23681010

  16. Stinging Insect Matching Game

    MedlinePlus

    ... 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 ...

  17. NASA GSFC Science Symposium on Atomic and Molecular Physics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bhatia, Anand K. (Editor)

    2007-01-01

    This document is the proceedings of a conference on atomic and molecular physics in honor of the retirements of Dr. Aaron Temkin and Dr. Richard Drachman. The conference contained discussions on electron, positron, atomic, and positronium physics, as well as a discussion on muon catalyzed fusion. This proceedings document also contains photographs taken at the symposium, as well as speeches and a short biography made in tribute to the retirees.

  18. Molecular targeting agents in cancer therapy: science and society.

    PubMed

    Shaikh, Asim Jamal

    2012-01-01

    The inception of targeted agents has revolutionized the cancer therapy paradigm, both for physicians and patients. A large number of molecular targeted agents for cancer therapy are currently available for clinical use today. Many more are in making, but there are issues that remain to be resolved for the scientific as well as social community before the recommendation of their widespread use in may clinical scenarios can be done, one such issue being cost and cost effectiveness, others being resistance and lack of sustained efficacy. With the current knowledge about available targeted agents, the growing knowledge of intricate molecular pathways and unfolding of wider spectrum of molecular targets that can really matter in the disease control, calls for only the just use of the agents available now, drug companies need to make a serious attempt to reduce the cost of the agents. Research should focus on agents that show sustained responses in preclinical data. More needs to be done in laboratories and by the pharmaceutical industries, before we can truly claim to have entered a new era of targeted therapy in cancer care.

  19. Fluorescence in insects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Welch, Victoria L.; Van Hooijdonk, Eloise; Intrater, Nurit; Vigneron, Jean-Pol

    2012-10-01

    Fluorescent molecules are much in demand for biosensors, solar cells, LEDs and VCSEL diodes, therefore, considerable efforts have been expended in designing and tailoring fluorescence to specific technical applications. However, naturally occurring fluorescence of diverse types has been reported from a wide array of living organisms: most famously, the jellyfish Aequorea victoria, but also in over 100 species of coral and in the cuticle of scorpions, where it is the rule, rather than the exception. Despite the plethora of known insect species, comparatively few quantitative studies have been made of insect fluorescence. Because of the potential applications of natural fluorescence, studies in this field have relevance to both physics and biology. Therefore, in this paper, we review the literature on insect fluorescence, before documenting its occurrence in the longhorn beetles Sternotomis virescens, Sternotomis variabilis var. semi rufescens, Anoplophora elegans and Stellognatha maculata, the tiger beetles Cicindela maritima and Cicindela germanica and the weevil Pachyrrhynchus gemmatus purpureus. Optical features of insect fluorescence, including emitted wavelength, molecular ageing and naturally occurring combinations of fluorescence with bioluminescence and colour-producing structures are discussed.

  20. Insects: A nutritional alternative

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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.

  1. "The Environment is Everything That Isn't Me": Molecular Mechanisms and Evolutionary Dynamics of Insect Clocks in Variable Surroundings.

    PubMed

    Rivas, Gustavo B S; Bauzer, Luiz G S da R; Meireles-Filho, Antonio C A

    2015-01-01

    Circadian rhythms are oscillations in behavior, metabolism and physiology that have a period close to 24 h. These rhythms are controlled by an internal pacemaker that evolved under strong selective pressures imposed by environmental cyclical changes, mainly of light and temperature. The molecular nature of the circadian pacemaker was extensively studied in a number of organisms under controlled laboratory conditions. But although these studies were fundamental to our understanding of the circadian clock, most of the environmental conditions used resembled rather crudely the relatively constant situation at lower latitudes. At higher latitudes light-dark and temperature cycles vary considerably across different seasons, with summers having long and hot days and winters short and cold ones. Considering these differences and other external cues, such as moonlight, recent studies in more natural and semi-natural situations revealed unexpected features at both molecular and behavioral levels, highlighting the dramatic influence of multiple environmental variables in the molecular clockwork. This emphasizes the importance of studying the circadian clock in the wild, where seasonal environmental changes fine-tune the underlying circadian mechanism, affecting population dynamics and impacting the geographical variation in clock genes. Indeed, latitudinal clines in clock gene frequencies suggest that natural selection and demography shape the circadian clock over wide geographical ranges. In this review we will discuss the recent advances in understanding the molecular underpinnings of the circadian clock, how it resonates with the surrounding variables (both in the laboratory and in semi-natural conditions) and its impact on population dynamics and evolution. In addition, we will elaborate on how next-generation sequencing technologies will complement classical reductionist approaches by identifying causal variants in natural populations that will link genetic variation to

  2. Insect evolution.

    PubMed

    Engel, Michael S

    2015-10-05

    It goes without saying that insects epitomize diversity, and with over a million documented species they stand out as one of the most remarkable lineages in the 3.5-billion-year history of life on earth (Figure 1). This reality is passé to even the layperson and is taken for granted in the same way none of us think much of our breathing as we go about our day, and yet insects are just as vital to our existence. Insects are simultaneously familiar and foreign to us, and while a small fraction are beloved or reviled, most are simply ignored. These inexorable evolutionary overachievers outnumber us all, their segmented body plan is remarkably labile, they combine a capacity for high rates of speciation with low levels of natural extinction, and their history of successes eclipses those of the more familiar ages of dinosaurs and mammals alike. It is their evolution - persisting over vast expanses of geological time and inextricably implicated in the diversification of other lineages - that stands as one of the most expansive subjects in biology.

  3. Integration of molecular pathology, epidemiology and social science for global precision medicine.

    PubMed

    Nishi, Akihiro; Milner, Danny A; Giovannucci, Edward L; Nishihara, Reiko; Tan, Andy S; Kawachi, Ichiro; Ogino, Shuji

    2016-01-01

    The precision medicine concept and the unique disease principle imply that each patient has unique pathogenic processes resulting from heterogeneous cellular genetic and epigenetic alterations and interactions between cells (including immune cells) and exposures, including dietary, environmental, microbial and lifestyle factors. As a core method field in population health science and medicine, epidemiology is a growing scientific discipline that can analyze disease risk factors and develop statistical methodologies to maximize utilization of big data on populations and disease pathology. The evolving transdisciplinary field of molecular pathological epidemiology (MPE) can advance biomedical and health research by linking exposures to molecular pathologic signatures, enhancing causal inference and identifying potential biomarkers for clinical impact. The MPE approach can be applied to any diseases, although it has been most commonly used in neoplastic diseases (including breast, lung and colorectal cancers) because of availability of various molecular diagnostic tests. However, use of state-of-the-art genomic, epigenomic and other omic technologies and expensive drugs in modern healthcare systems increases racial, ethnic and socioeconomic disparities. To address this, we propose to integrate molecular pathology, epidemiology and social science. Social epidemiology integrates the latter two fields. The integrative social MPE model can embrace sociology, economics and precision medicine, address global health disparities and inequalities, and elucidate biological effects of social environments, behaviors and networks. We foresee advancements of molecular medicine, including molecular diagnostics, biomedical imaging and targeted therapeutics, which should benefit individuals in a global population, by means of an interdisciplinary approach of integrative MPE and social health science.

  4. Homology Modeling and Molecular Docking for the Science Curriculum

    PubMed Central

    McDougal, Owen M.; Comia, Nic; Sambasivarao, S.V.; Remm, Andrew; Mallory, Chris; Oxford, Julia Thom; Maupin, C. Mark; Andersen, Tim

    2015-01-01

    DockoMatic 2.0 is a powerful open source software program (downloadable from sourceforge.net) that simplifies the exploration of computational biochemistry. This manuscript describes a practical tutorial for use in the undergraduate curriculum that introduces students to macromolecular structure creation, ligand binding calculations, and visualization of docking results. A student procedure is provided that illustrates use of DockoMatic to create a homology model for the amino propeptide region (223 amino acids with two disulfide bonds) of collagen α1 (XI), followed by molecular docking of the commercial drug Arixtra® to the homology model of the amino propeptide domain of collagen α1 (XI), and finally, analysis of the results of the docking experiment. The activities and supplemental materials described are intended to educate students in the use of computational tools to create and investigate homology models for other systems of interest and to train students to be proficient with molecular docking and analyzing results. The tutorial also serves as a foundation for investigators seeking to explore the viability of using computational biochemistry to study their receptor-ligand binding motifs. PMID:24376157

  5. Molecular catalysis science: Perspective on unifying the fields of catalysis

    PubMed Central

    Ye, Rong; Hurlburt, Tyler J.; Sabyrov, Kairat; Alayoglu, Selim; Somorjai, Gabor A.

    2016-01-01

    Colloidal chemistry is used to control the size, shape, morphology, and composition of metal nanoparticles. Model catalysts as such are applied to catalytic transformations in the three types of catalysts: heterogeneous, homogeneous, and enzymatic. Real-time dynamics of oxidation state, coordination, and bonding of nanoparticle catalysts are put under the microscope using surface techniques such as sum-frequency generation vibrational spectroscopy and ambient pressure X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy under catalytically relevant conditions. It was demonstrated that catalytic behavior and trends are strongly tied to oxidation state, the coordination number and crystallographic orientation of metal sites, and bonding and orientation of surface adsorbates. It was also found that catalytic performance can be tuned by carefully designing and fabricating catalysts from the bottom up. Homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysts, and likely enzymes, behave similarly at the molecular level. Unifying the fields of catalysis is the key to achieving the goal of 100% selectivity in catalysis. PMID:27114536

  6. Molecular catalysis science: Perspective on unifying the fields of catalysis.

    PubMed

    Ye, Rong; Hurlburt, Tyler J; Sabyrov, Kairat; Alayoglu, Selim; Somorjai, Gabor A

    2016-05-10

    Colloidal chemistry is used to control the size, shape, morphology, and composition of metal nanoparticles. Model catalysts as such are applied to catalytic transformations in the three types of catalysts: heterogeneous, homogeneous, and enzymatic. Real-time dynamics of oxidation state, coordination, and bonding of nanoparticle catalysts are put under the microscope using surface techniques such as sum-frequency generation vibrational spectroscopy and ambient pressure X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy under catalytically relevant conditions. It was demonstrated that catalytic behavior and trends are strongly tied to oxidation state, the coordination number and crystallographic orientation of metal sites, and bonding and orientation of surface adsorbates. It was also found that catalytic performance can be tuned by carefully designing and fabricating catalysts from the bottom up. Homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysts, and likely enzymes, behave similarly at the molecular level. Unifying the fields of catalysis is the key to achieving the goal of 100% selectivity in catalysis.

  7. Newly discovered insect RNA viruses in China.

    PubMed

    Qiu, Yang; Wang, ZhaoWei; Liu, YongXiang; Qi, Nan; Si, Jie; Xiang, Xue; Xia, XiaoLing; Hu, YuanYang; Zhou, Xi

    2013-08-01

    Insects are a group of arthropods and the largest group of animals on Earth, with over one million species described to date. Like other life forms, insects suffer from viruses that cause disease and death. Viruses that are pathogenic to beneficial insects cause dramatic economic losses on agriculture. In contrast, viruses that are pathogenic to insect pests can be exploited as attractive biological control agents. All of these factors have led to an explosion in the amount of research into insect viruses in recent years, generating impressive quantities of information on the molecular and cellular biology of these viruses. Due to the wide variety of insect viruses, a better understanding of these viruses will expand our overall knowledge of their virology. Here, we review studies of several newly discovered RNA insect viruses in China.

  8. Educational Challenges of Molecular Life Science: Characteristics and Implications for Education and Research

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tibell, Lena A. E.; Rundgren, Carl-Johan

    2010-01-01

    Molecular life science is one of the fastest-growing fields of scientific and technical innovation, and biotechnology has profound effects on many aspects of daily life--often with deep, ethical dimensions. At the same time, the content is inherently complex, highly abstract, and deeply rooted in diverse disciplines ranging from "pure…

  9. Clusters of Concepts in Molecular Genetics: A Study of Swedish Upper Secondary Science Students' Understanding

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gericke, Niklas; Wahlberg, Sara

    2013-01-01

    To understand genetics, students need to be able to explain and draw connections between a large number of concepts. The purpose of the study reported herein was to explore the way upper secondary science students reason about concepts in molecular genetics in order to understand protein synthesis. Data were collected by group interviews. Concept…

  10. Insect abatement system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Spiro, Clifford Lawrence (Inventor); Burnell, Timothy Brydon (Inventor); Wengrovius, Jeffrey Hayward (Inventor)

    1997-01-01

    An insect abatement system prevents adhesion of insect debris to surfaces which must be kept substantially free of insect debris. An article is coated with an insect abatement coating comprising polyorganosiloxane with a Shore A hardness of less than 50 and a tensile strength of less than 4 MPa. A method for preventing the adhesion of insect debris to surfaces includes the step of applying an insect abatement coating to a surface which must be kept substantially free of insect debris.

  11. The Molecular Characterization of the Kinin Transcript and the Physiological Effects of Kinins in the Blood-Gorging Insect Rhodnius prolixus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The dramatic feeding-related activities of the Chagas' disease vector, Rhodnius prolixus are under neurohormonal regulation of serotonin and various neuropeptides. One such family of neuropeptides, the insect kinins, possess diuretic, digestive and myotropic activities in many insects. In this study...

  12. Eric Carle-Inspired Insect Collages.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Palamountain, Eileen; Turner, Kim

    2000-01-01

    Describes a lesson in which students create collage insects inspired by the work of Eric Carle (The Very Hungry Caterpillar). Connects art, language arts, and science. Discusses how students make paper to use as the collage material and how students create the insects. (CMK)

  13. The Environmental and Molecular Sciences Laboratory project -- Continuous evolution in leadership

    SciTech Connect

    Knutson, D.E.; McClusky, J.K.

    1994-10-01

    The Environmental and Molecular Sciences Laboratory (EMSL) construction project at Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL) in Richland, Washington, is a $230M Major Systems Acquisition for the US Department of Energy (DOE). The completed laboratory will be a national user facility that provides unparalleled capabilities for scientists involved in environmental molecular science research. This project, approved for construction by the Secretary of Energy in October 1993, is underway. The United States is embarking on an environmental cleanup effort that dwarfs previous scientific enterprise. Using current best available technology, the projected costs of cleaning up the tens of thousands of toxic waste sites, including DOE sites, is estimated to exceed one trillion dollars. The present state of scientific knowledge regarding the effects of exogenous chemicals on human biology is very limited. Long term environmental research at the molecular level is needed to resolve the concerns, and form the building blocks for a structure of cost effective process improvement and regulatory reform.

  14. Insect inspiration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McIntosh, Andy; Beheshti, Novid

    2008-04-01

    The innocuous looking bombardier beetle is one of the most remarkable creatures around. This tiny insect is endowed with a defence mechanism that would be the envy of any comic-strip superhero - it can fight off any spider, frog, ant or bird that comes too close by blasting the attacker with a powerful jet of hot, toxic fluid. Furthermore, the beetle can aim its weapon in any direction (even over its head) with pinpoint accuracy, and can reach distances of up to 20 cm with its spray.

  15. A Tribolium castaneum whole-embryo culture protocol for studying the molecular mechanisms and morphogenetic movements involved in insect development.

    PubMed

    Macaya, Constanza C; Saavedra, Patricio E; Cepeda, Rodrigo E; Nuñez, Viviana A; Sarrazin, Andres F

    2016-01-01

    The development of the red flour beetle Tribolium castaneum is more representative of arthropods than the evolutionarily derived fly, Drosophila melanogaster. Thus, Tribolium is becoming an emerging organism model for studying the evolution of the mechanisms that control embryonic development in arthropods. In this regard, diverse genetic and molecular tools are currently available for Tribolium, as well as imaging and embryonic techniques. Recently, we developed a method for culturing embryos in order to study specific stages during Tribolium development. In this report, we present a detailed and "easy-to-follow" protocol for embryo handling and dissection, extending the use of whole-embryo culture to functional analysis by performing in vivo pharmacological manipulations. This experimental accessibility allowed us to study the relevance of microtubules in axis elongation, using nocodazole and taxol drugs to interfere with microtubule networks, followed by length measurement analysis. Additionally, we demonstrated that embryo handling had no effect on the development of Tribolium embryos, and we checked viability after dissection and bisection and during incubation using propidium iodide. The embryo culture protocol we describe here can be applied to study diverse developmental processes in Tribolium. We expect that this protocol can be adapted and applied to other arthropods.

  16. A Large-Scale, Higher-Level, Molecular Phylogenetic Study of the Insect Order Lepidoptera (Moths and Butterflies)

    PubMed Central

    Regier, Jerome C.; Mitter, Charles; Zwick, Andreas; Bazinet, Adam L.; Cummings, Michael P.; Kawahara, Akito Y.; Sohn, Jae-Cheon; Zwickl, Derrick J.; Cho, Soowon; Davis, Donald R.; Baixeras, Joaquin; Brown, John; Parr, Cynthia; Weller, Susan; Lees, David C.; Mitter, Kim T.

    2013-01-01

    Background 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. Methodology / Principal Findings 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. Conclusions / Significance 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

  17. Potato agriculture, late blight science, and the molecularization of plant pathology.

    PubMed

    Turner, R Steven

    2008-01-01

    By the mid-1980s nucleic-acid based methods were penetrating the farthest reaches of biological science, triggering rivalries among practitioners, altering relationships among subfields, and transforming the research front. This article delivers a "bottom up" analysis of that transformation at work in one important area of biological science, plant pathology, by tracing the "molecularization" of efforts to understand and control one notorious plant disease -- the late blight of potatoes. It mobilizes the research literature of late blight science as a tool through which to trace the changing typography of the research front from 1983 to 2003. During these years molecularization intensified the traditional fragmentation of the late blight research community, even as it dramatically integrated study of the causal organism into broader areas of biology. In these decades the pathogen responsible for late blight, the oomycete "Phytophthora infestans," was discovered to be undergoing massive, frightening, and still largely unexplained genetic diversification -- a circumstance that lends the episode examined here an urgency that reinforces its historiographical significance as a case-study in the molecularization of the biological sciences.

  18. Polyphenism in insects.

    PubMed

    Simpson, Stephen J; Sword, Gregory A; Lo, Nathan

    2011-09-27

    Polyphenism is the phenomenon where two or more distinct phenotypes are produced by the same genotype. Examples of polyphenism provide some of the most compelling systems for the study of epigenetics. Polyphenisms are a major reason for the success of the insects, allowing them to partition life history stages (with larvae dedicated to feeding and growth, and adults dedicated to reproduction and dispersal), to adopt different phenotypes that best suit predictable environmental changes (seasonal morphs), to cope with temporally heterogeneous environments (dispersal morphs), and to partition labour within social groups (the castes of eusocial insects). We survey the status of research on some of the best known examples of insect polyphenism, in each case considering the environmental cues that trigger shifts in phenotype, the neurochemical and hormonal pathways that mediate the transformation, the molecular genetic and epigenetic mechanisms involved in initiating and maintaining the polyphenism, and the adaptive and life-history significance of the phenomenon. We conclude by highlighting some of the common features of these examples and consider future avenues for research on polyphenism.

  19. Allergies to Insect Venom

    MedlinePlus

    Allergies To Insect Venom Facts About Allergies The tendency to develop allergies may be inherited. If you have allergic tendencies and ... lives of those who are sensitive to it...insect venom! Although less common than pollen allergy, insect ...

  20. Integration of Molecular Pathology, Epidemiology, and Social Science for Global Precision Medicine

    PubMed Central

    Nishi, Akihiro; Milner, Danny A; Giovannucci, Edward L.; Nishihara, Reiko; Tan, Andy S.; Kawachi, Ichiro; Ogino, Shuji

    2015-01-01

    Summary The precision medicine concept and the unique disease principle imply that each patient has unique pathogenic processes resulting from heterogeneous cellular genetic and epigenetic alterations, and interactions between cells (including immune cells) and exposures, including dietary, environmental, microbial, and lifestyle factors. As a core method field in population health science and medicine, epidemiology is a growing scientific discipline that can analyze disease risk factors, and develop statistical methodologies to maximize utilization of big data on populations and disease pathology. The evolving transdisciplinary field of molecular pathological epidemiology (MPE) can advance biomedical and health research by linking exposures to molecular pathologic signatures, enhancing causal inference, and identifying potential biomarkers for clinical impact. The MPE approach can be applied to any diseases, although it has been most commonly used in neoplastic diseases (including breast, lung and colorectal cancers) because of availability of various molecular diagnostic tests. However, use of state-of-the-art genomic, epigenomic and other omic technologies and expensive drugs in modern healthcare systems increases racial, ethnic and socioeconomic disparities. To address this, we propose to integrate molecular pathology, epidemiology, and social science. Social epidemiology integrates the latter two fields. The integrative social MPE model can embrace sociology, economics and precision medicine, address global health disparities and inequalities, and elucidate biological effects of social environments, behaviors, and networks. We foresee advancements of molecular medicine, including molecular diagnostics, biomedical imaging, and targeted therapeutics, which should benefit individuals in a global population, by means of an interdisciplinary approach of integrative MPE and social health science. PMID:26636627

  1. A call to insect scientists: Challenges and opportunities of managing insect communities under climate change

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hellmann, Jessica J.; Grundel, Ralph; Hoving, Chris; Schuurman, Gregor W.

    2016-01-01

    As climate change moves insect systems into uncharted territory, more knowledge about insect dynamics and the factors that drive them could enable us to better manage and conserve insect communities. Climate change may also require us revisit insect management goals and strategies and lead to a new kind of scientific engagement in management decision-making. Here we make five key points about the role of insect science in aiding and crafting management decisions, and we illustrate those points with the monarch butterfly and the Karner blue butterfly, two species undergoing considerable change and facing new management dilemmas. Insect biology has a strong history of engagement in applied problems, and as the impacts of climate change increase, a reimagined ethic of entomology in service of broader society may emerge. We hope to motivate insect biologists to contribute time and effort toward solving the challenges of climate change.

  2. A call to insect scientists: challenges and opportunities of managing insect communities under climate change.

    PubMed

    Hellmann, Jessica J; Grundel, Ralph; Hoving, Chris; Schuurman, Gregor W

    2016-10-01

    As climate change moves insect systems into uncharted territory, more knowledge about insect dynamics and the factors that drive them could enable us to better manage and conserve insect communities. Climate change may also require us to revisit insect management goals and strategies and lead to a new kind of scientific engagement in management decision-making. Here we make five key points about the role of insect science in aiding and crafting management decisions, and we illustrate those points with the monarch butterfly and the Karner blue butterfly, two species undergoing considerable change and facing new management dilemmas. Insect biology has a strong history of engagement in applied problems, and as the impacts of climate change increase, a reimagined ethic of entomology in service of broader society may emerge. We hope to motivate insect biologists to contribute time and effort toward solving the challenges of climate change.

  3. Plant defense against insect herbivory

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Damage to maize crops by insect herbivores such as beet and fall army worm causes significant impact in the Southern United States in terms of both yield loss and insecticide use. Enhanced understanding of how maize can defend itself against such attacks at a molecular level will enable development ...

  4. Democratizing evolutionary biology, lessons from insects.

    PubMed

    Dunn, Robert R; Beasley, DeAnna E

    2016-12-01

    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 review highlights how insect-based citizen science has led to the expansion of specimen collections and reframed research questions in light of new observations and unexpected discoveries. Given the rapid expansion of human-modified (and inhabited) environments, the degree to which the public can participate in insect-based citizen science will allow us to track and monitor evolutionary trends at a global scale.

  5. What Makes an Insect an Insect?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    NatureScope, 1985

    1985-01-01

    Provides background information on characteristics common to all insects, activities, and student materials (ready-to-copy games, puzzles, coloring pages, worksheets, and/or mazes) which describe: how insects are classified; how they are different from other animals; and the main insect characteristics. Activities include recommended age levels,…

  6. Belowground Carbon Cycling Processes at the Molecular Scale: An EMSL Science Theme Advisory Panel Workshop

    SciTech Connect

    Hess, Nancy J.; Brown, Gordon E.; Plata, Charity

    2014-02-21

    As part of the Belowground Carbon Cycling Processes at the Molecular Scale workshop, an EMSL Science Theme Advisory Panel meeting held in February 2013, attendees discussed critical biogeochemical processes that regulate carbon cycling in soil. The meeting attendees determined that as a national scientific user facility, EMSL can provide the tools and expertise needed to elucidate the molecular foundation that underlies mechanistic descriptions of biogeochemical processes that control carbon allocation and fluxes at the terrestrial/atmospheric interface in landscape and regional climate models. Consequently, the workshop's goal was to identify the science gaps that hinder either development of mechanistic description of critical processes or their accurate representation in climate models. In part, this report offers recommendations for future EMSL activities in this research area. The workshop was co-chaired by Dr. Nancy Hess (EMSL) and Dr. Gordon Brown (Stanford University).

  7. Molecular biology in marine science: Scientific questions, technological approaches, and practical implications

    SciTech Connect

    1994-12-31

    This report describes molecular techniques that could be invaluable in addressing process-oriented problems in the ocean sciences that have perplexed oceanographers for decades, such as understanding the basis for biogeochemical processes, recruitment processes, upper-ocean dynamics, biological impacts of global warming, and ecological impacts of human activities. The coupling of highly sophisticated methods, such as satellite remote sensing, which permits synoptic monitoring of chemical, physical, and biological parameters over large areas, with the power of modern molecular tools for ``ground truthing`` at small scales could allow scientists to address questions about marine organisms and the ocean in which they live that could not be answered previously. Clearly, the marine sciences are on the threshold of an exciting new frontier of scientific discovery and economic opportunity.

  8. The impact of biotechnology on hyphomycetous fungal insect biocontrol agents.

    PubMed

    Hegedus, D D; Khachatourians, G G

    1995-01-01

    The potential for the control of insect pests by entomopathogenic fungi has been touted for decades, if not centuries. Only recently have advances in biotechnology provided the tools for indepth analysis of the mechanisms involved in pathogenesis and host death at the molecular level. This review outlines the current state of knowledge regarding the mode of infection and targets several key components that are amenable to improvement via biotechnology. Realization of the considerable economic potential of fungal bioinsecticides can occur only through a combined and coordinated effort involving fundamental science, formulation technology and field applications.

  9. Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory Operations System: Version 4.0 - system requirements specification

    SciTech Connect

    Kashporenko, D.

    1996-07-01

    This document is intended to provide an operations standard for the Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory OPerations System (EMSL OPS). It is directed toward three primary audiences: (1) Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory (EMSL) facility and operations personnel; (2) laboratory line managers and staff; and (3) researchers, equipment operators, and laboratory users. It is also a statement of system requirements for software developers of EMSL OPS. The need for a finely tuned, superior research environment as provided by the US Department of Energy`s (DOE) Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory has never been greater. The abrupt end of the Cold War and the realignment of national priorities caused major US and competing overseas laboratories to reposition themselves in a highly competitive research marketplace. For a new laboratory such as the EMSL, this means coming into existence in a rapidly changing external environment. For any major laboratory, these changes create funding uncertainties and increasing global competition along with concomitant demands for higher standards of research product quality and innovation. While more laboratories are chasing fewer funding dollars, research ideas and proposals, especially for molecular-level research in the materials and biological sciences, are burgeoning. In such an economically constrained atmosphere, reduced costs, improved productivity, and strategic research project portfolio building become essential to establish and maintain any distinct competitive advantage. For EMSL, this environment and these demands require clear operational objectives, specific goals, and a well-crafted strategy. Specific goals will evolve and change with the evolution of the nature and definition of DOE`s environmental research needs. Hence, EMSL OPS is designed to facilitate migration of these changes with ease into every pertinent job function, creating a facile {open_quotes}learning organization.{close_quotes}

  10. Interdisciplinary education to integrate pathology and epidemiology: towards molecular and population-level health science.

    PubMed

    Ogino, Shuji; King, Emily E; Beck, Andrew H; Sherman, Mark E; Milner, Danny A; Giovannucci, Edward

    2012-10-15

    In recent decades, epidemiology, public health, and medical sciences have been increasingly compartmentalized into narrower disciplines. The authors recognize the value of integration of divergent scientific fields in order to create new methods, concepts, paradigms, and knowledge. Herein they describe the recent emergence of molecular pathological epidemiology (MPE), which represents an integration of population and molecular biologic science to gain insights into the etiologies, pathogenesis, evolution, and outcomes of complex multifactorial diseases. Most human diseases, including common cancers (such as breast, lung, prostate, and colorectal cancers, leukemia, and lymphoma) and other chronic diseases (such as diabetes mellitus, cardiovascular diseases, hypertension, autoimmune diseases, psychiatric diseases, and some infectious diseases), are caused by alterations in the genome, epigenome, transcriptome, proteome, metabolome, microbiome, and interactome of all of the above components. In this era of personalized medicine and personalized prevention, we need integrated science (such as MPE) which can decipher diseases at the molecular, genetic, cellular, and population levels simultaneously. The authors believe that convergence and integration of multiple disciplines should be commonplace in research and education. We need to be open-minded and flexible in designing integrated education curricula and training programs for future students, clinicians, practitioners, and investigators.

  11. Polarization Imaging and Insect Vision

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Green, Adam S.; Ohmann, Paul R.; Leininger, Nick E.; Kavanaugh, James A.

    2010-01-01

    For several years we have included discussions about insect vision in the optics units of our introductory physics courses. This topic is a natural extension of demonstrations involving Brewster's reflection and Rayleigh scattering of polarized light because many insects heavily rely on optical polarization for navigation and communication. Students, especially those majoring in the life sciences, tend to find the conversation intriguing because of its interdisciplinary context. To make it even more appealing, we recently created a laboratory component that allows students to use digital cameras and polarizing filters to create polarization maps of environmental scenes and insect bodies. In this paper we describe how to do so with ImageJ, a widely used and freely available image processing program that is suitable for students with no programming experience.

  12. Book Review: Insect Virology

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Viruses that infect insects have long been of interest both as a means for controlling insect pest populations in an environmentally safe manner, and also as significant threats to beneficial insects of great value, such as honey bees and silkworms. Insect viruses also have been of intrinsic intere...

  13. Insect-ual Pursuits.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mallow, David

    1991-01-01

    Explains how insects can be used to stimulate student writing. Describes how students can create their own systems to classify and differentiate insects. Discusses insect morphology and includes three detailed diagrams. The author provides an extension activity where students hypothesize about the niche of an insect based on its anatomy. (PR)

  14. Catalog of insect type specimens preserved at the Kunming Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Science with corrections of some specimens.

    PubMed

    Li, Kai-Qin; Wang, Yun-Zhen; Dong, Da-Zhi; Zhang, Li-Kun

    2015-09-18

    This article presents a list of insect types preserved in Kunming Natural History Museum of Zoology (KNHMZ). As of March, 2015, 3 412 type specimens belonging to 266 species/subspecies of 37 families in 9 orders (Odonata, Isoptera, Mantodea, Orthoptera, Hemiptera, Coleoptera, Diptera, Hymenoptera and Lepidoptera) are included. Information corrections of some specimens are provided in this article.

  15. Systems biology for molecular life sciences and its impact in biomedicine.

    PubMed

    Medina, Miguel Ángel

    2013-03-01

    Modern systems biology is already contributing to a radical transformation of molecular life sciences and biomedicine, and it is expected to have a real impact in the clinical setting in the next years. In this review, the emergence of systems biology is contextualized with a historic overview, and its present state is depicted. The present and expected future contribution of systems biology to the development of molecular medicine is underscored. Concerning the present situation, this review includes a reflection on the "inflation" of biological data and the urgent need for tools and procedures to make hidden information emerge. Descriptions of the impact of networks and models and the available resources and tools for applying them in systems biology approaches to molecular medicine are provided as well. The actual current impact of systems biology in molecular medicine is illustrated, reviewing two cases, namely, those of systems pharmacology and cancer systems biology. Finally, some of the expected contributions of systems biology to the immediate future of molecular medicine are commented.

  16. The molecularization of identity: science and subjectivity in the 21st century.

    PubMed

    McGONIGLE, Ian Vincent; Benjamin, Ruha

    2016-07-05

    Recent advances in biological and computational technologies are changing the way different social groups imagine race, gender, kinship, citizenship and disease risk. Existing taxonomies are being displaced or reconfigured, impacting the ways in which people are governed, how lives are lived, how groups are known and how power is exercised. Herein we report on a two-day international symposium that we co-organized, titled 'The molecularization of identity: science and subjectivity in the 21st century,' that was held on 29-30 April 2016 at the Program on Science, Technology and Society, at Harvard University. The symposium drew upon the tools and expertise from multiple disciplines and diverse geographical regions and consisted of 24 original research presentations and an interdisciplinary roundtable. Specific attention was paid to the bioethical, material and lived dimensions of recent developments in molecular technologies, and discussions interrogated the complex ways in which the 'molecular realm' is an emerging site for constituting human identities in the 21st century. Herein we summarize some of the key findings of the conference and raise three further issues for practitioners and researchers to consider in relation to the broader impact of genetics research. Namely: transnational governance of emerging biotechnologies; representation of different interest groups in policy decisions; and rights of access to emerging technologies.

  17. The Atomic, Molecular and Optical Science instrument at the Linac Coherent Light Source

    SciTech Connect

    Ferguson, Ken R.; Bucher, Maximilian; Bozek, John D.; Carron, Sebastian; Castagna, Jean-Charles; Coffee, Ryan; Curiel, G. Ivan; Holmes, Michael; Krzywinski, Jacek; Messerschmidt, Marc; Minitti, Michael; Mitra, Ankush; Moeller, Stefan; Noonan, Peter; Osipov, Timur; Schorb, Sebastian; Swiggers, Michele; Wallace, Alexander; Yin, Jing; Bostedt, Christoph

    2015-05-01

    The Atomic, Molecular and Optical Science (AMO) instrument at the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) provides a tight soft X-ray focus into one of three experimental endstations. The flexible instrument design is optimized for studying a wide variety of phenomena requiring peak intensity. There is a suite of spectrometers and two photon area detectors available. An optional mirror-based split-and-delay unit can be used for X-ray pump–probe experiments. Recent scientific highlights illustrate the imaging, time-resolved spectroscopy and high-power density capabilities of the AMO instrument.

  18. The Atomic, Molecular and Optical Science instrument at the Linac Coherent Light Source

    PubMed Central

    Ferguson, Ken R.; Bucher, Maximilian; Bozek, John D.; Carron, Sebastian; Castagna, Jean-Charles; Coffee, Ryan; Curiel, G. Ivan; Holmes, Michael; Krzywinski, Jacek; Messerschmidt, Marc; Minitti, Michael; Mitra, Ankush; Moeller, Stefan; Noonan, Peter; Osipov, Timur; Schorb, Sebastian; Swiggers, Michele; Wallace, Alexander; Yin, Jing; Bostedt, Christoph

    2015-01-01

    The Atomic, Molecular and Optical Science (AMO) instrument at the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) provides a tight soft X-ray focus into one of three experimental endstations. The flexible instrument design is optimized for studying a wide variety of phenomena requiring peak intensity. There is a suite of spectrometers and two photon area detectors available. An optional mirror-based split-and-delay unit can be used for X-ray pump–probe experiments. Recent scientific highlights illustrate the imaging, time-resolved spectroscopy and high-power density capabilities of the AMO instrument. PMID:25931058

  19. Molecular pathological epidemiology of epigenetics: emerging integrative science to analyze environment, host, and disease.

    PubMed

    Ogino, Shuji; Lochhead, Paul; Chan, Andrew T; Nishihara, Reiko; Cho, Eunyoung; Wolpin, Brian M; Meyerhardt, Jeffrey A; Meissner, Alexander; Schernhammer, Eva S; Fuchs, Charles S; Giovannucci, Edward

    2013-04-01

    Epigenetics acts as an interface between environmental/exogenous factors, cellular responses, and pathological processes. Aberrant epigenetic signatures are a hallmark of complex multifactorial diseases (including neoplasms and malignancies such as leukemias, lymphomas, sarcomas, and breast, lung, prostate, liver, and colorectal cancers). Epigenetic signatures (DNA methylation, mRNA and microRNA expression, etc) may serve as biomarkers for risk stratification, early detection, and disease classification, as well as targets for therapy and chemoprevention. In particular, DNA methylation assays are widely applied to formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded archival tissue specimens as clinical pathology tests. To better understand the interplay between etiological factors, cellular molecular characteristics, and disease evolution, the field of 'molecular pathological epidemiology (MPE)' has emerged as an interdisciplinary integration of 'molecular pathology' and 'epidemiology'. In contrast to traditional epidemiological research including genome-wide association studies (GWAS), MPE is founded on the unique disease principle, that is, each disease process results from unique profiles of exposomes, epigenomes, transcriptomes, proteomes, metabolomes, microbiomes, and interactomes in relation to the macroenvironment and tissue microenvironment. MPE may represent a logical evolution of GWAS, termed 'GWAS-MPE approach'. Although epigenome-wide association study attracts increasing attention, currently, it has a fundamental problem in that each cell within one individual has a unique, time-varying epigenome. Having a similar conceptual framework to systems biology, the holistic MPE approach enables us to link potential etiological factors to specific molecular pathology, and gain novel pathogenic insights on causality. The widespread application of epigenome (eg, methylome) analyses will enhance our understanding of disease heterogeneity, epigenotypes (CpG island methylator

  20. Frames of scientific evidence: How journalists represent the (un)certainty of molecular medicine in science television programs.

    PubMed

    Ruhrmann, Georg; Guenther, Lars; Kessler, Sabrina Heike; Milde, Jutta

    2015-08-01

    For laypeople, media coverage of science on television is a gateway to scientific issues. Defining scientific evidence is central to the field of science, but there are still questions if news coverage of science represents scientific research findings as certain or uncertain. The framing approach is a suitable framework to classify different media representations; it is applied here to investigate the frames of scientific evidence in film clips (n=207) taken from science television programs. Molecular medicine is the domain of interest for this analysis, due to its high proportion of uncertain and conflicting research findings and risks. The results indicate that television clips vary in their coverage of scientific evidence of molecular medicine. Four frames were found: Scientific Uncertainty and Controversy, Scientifically Certain Data, Everyday Medical Risks, and Conflicting Scientific Evidence. They differ in their way of framing scientific evidence and risks of molecular medicine.

  1. Molecular Representations: Building Tentative Links Between the History of Science and the Study of Cognition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamalidou, Maria

    This paper addresses questions concerning the cognitive character of nineteenth-century British molecular discourse. At a time when no proof of the existence or the intimate structure of the material particle was yet available or even possible, scientists were free to suggest and discuss possible, alternative, or even incompatible, molecular pictures of the unseen level of the material substratum, leaving aside all realistic considerations. The role of these molecular representations was to provide the necessary causal links between physical phenomena and underlying mechanisms, thus infusing intelligibility into scientific explanations. Focusing on processes of thinking rather than on formal theories, the analysis in this paper will suggest that, precisely because of its fluid character, molecular discourse produced a common universe of meanings which sustained an on-going thought experiment regarding the intimate structure of matter, and that, by so doing, it initiated a process of familiarisation of scientists with the unobservable realm. Beyond realism and scepticism, the attitude of nineteenth-century molecularists, which can be adequately described as `suspension of judgement', may prove highly suggestive in science education.

  2. Exploiting natural variation to identify insect-resistance genes.

    PubMed

    Broekgaarden, Colette; Snoeren, Tjeerd A L; Dicke, Marcel; Vosman, Ben

    2011-10-01

    Herbivorous insects are widespread and often serious constraints to crop production. The use of insect-resistant crops is a very effective way to control insect pests in agriculture, and the development of such crops can be greatly enhanced by knowledge on plant resistance mechanisms and the genes involved. Plants have evolved diverse ways to cope with insect attack that has resulted in natural variation for resistance towards herbivorous insects. Studying the molecular genetics and transcriptional background of this variation has facilitated the identification of resistance genes and processes that lead to resistance against insects. With the development of new technologies, molecular studies are not restricted to model plants anymore. This review addresses the need to exploit natural variation in resistance towards insects to increase our knowledge on resistance mechanisms and the genes involved. We will discuss how this knowledge can be exploited in breeding programmes to provide sustainable crop protection against insect pests. Additionally, we discuss the current status of genetic research on insect-resistance genes. We conclude that insect-resistance mechanisms are still unclear at the molecular level and that exploiting natural variation with novel technologies will contribute greatly to the development of insect-resistant crop varieties.

  3. The morphological and molecular processes of onychophoran brain development show unique features that are neither comparable to insects nor to chelicerates.

    PubMed

    Eriksson, Bo Joakim; Stollewerk, Angelika

    2010-11-01

    The phylogenetic position of onychophorans is still being debated; however, most phylogenies suggest that onychophorans are a sister group to the arthropods. Here we have analysed neurogenesis in the brain of the onychophoran Euperipatoides kanangrensis. We show that the development of the onychophoran brain is considerably different from arthropods. Neural precursors seem to be generated at random positions rather than in distinct spatio-temporal domains as has been shown in insects and chelicerates. The different mode of neural precursor formation is reflected in the homogenous expression of the proneural and neurogenic genes. Furthermore, the morphogenetic events that generate the three-dimensional structure of the onychophoran brain are significantly different from arthropods. Despite the different mode of neural precursor formation in insects and chelicerates (neuroblasts versus neural precursor groups), brain neurogenesis shares more similarities in these arthropods as compared to the onychophoran. Our data show that the developmental processes that generate the brain have considerably diverged in onychophorans and arthropods.

  4. Insect Bites and Stings

    MedlinePlus

    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, ...

  5. Insects: An Interdisciplinary Unit

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    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.

  6. Insects and Scorpions

    MedlinePlus

    ... Topics Publications and Products Programs Contact NIOSH NIOSH INSECTS AND SCORPIONS Recommend on Facebook Tweet Share Compartir Stinging or biting insects or scorpions can be hazardous to outdoor workers. ...

  7. Respiration in Aquatic Insects.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    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)

  8. Ecophysiology and insect herbivory

    SciTech Connect

    Clancy, K.M.; Wagner, M.R.; Reich, P.B.

    1995-07-01

    The relationship of insect herbivory to conifer physiology is examined. Aspects of nutrient assimilation, nutrient distribution, water stress, and climatic change are correlated to defoliation by insects. Other factors examined include plant age, density, structure, soils, and plant genotype.

  9. Hybrid Light-Matter States in a Molecular and Material Science Perspective.

    PubMed

    Ebbesen, Thomas W

    2016-11-15

    The notion that light and matter states can be hybridized the way s and p orbitals are mixed is a concept that is not familiar to most chemists and material scientists. Yet it has much potential for molecular and material sciences that is just beginning to be explored. For instance, it has already been demonstrated that the rate and yield of chemical reactions can be modified and that the conductivity of organic semiconductors and nonradiative energy transfer can be enhanced through the hybridization of electronic transitions. The hybridization is not limited to electronic transitions; it can be applied for instance to vibrational transitions to selectively perturb a given bond, opening new possibilities to change the chemical reactivity landscape and to use it as a tool in (bio)molecular science and spectroscopy. Such results are not only the consequence of the new eigenstates and energies generated by the hybridization. The hybrid light-matter states also have unusual properties: they can be delocalized over a very large number of molecules (up to ca. 10(5)), and they become dispersive or momentum-sensitive. Importantly, the hybridization occurs even in the absence of light because it is the zero-point energies of the molecular and optical transitions that generate the new light-matter states. The present work is not a review but rather an Account from the author's point of view that first introduces the reader to the underlying concepts and details of the features of hybrid light-matter states. It is shown that light-matter hybridization is quite easy to achieve: all that is needed is to place molecules or a material in a resonant optical cavity (e.g., between two parallel mirrors) under the right conditions. For vibrational strong coupling, microfluidic IR cells can be used to study the consequences for chemistry in the liquid phase. Examples of modified properties are given to demonstrate the full potential for the molecular and material sciences. Finally an

  10. Evolutionary genetics of insect innate immunity

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Patterns of evolution in immune defense genes help to understand the evolutionary dynamics between hosts and pathogens. Multiple insect genomes have been sequenced, with many of them having annotated immune genes, which paves the way for a comparative genomic analysis of insect immunity. In this review, I summarize the current state of comparative and evolutionary genomics of insect innate immune defense. The focus is on the conserved and divergent components of immunity with an emphasis on gene family evolution and evolution at the sequence level; both population genetics and molecular evolution frameworks are considered. PMID:25750410

  11. Molecular Contamination on Anodized Aluminum Components of the Genesis Science Canister

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Burnett, D. S.; McNamara, K. M.; Jurewicz, A.; Woolum, D.

    2005-01-01

    Inspection of the interior of the Genesis science canister after recovery in Utah, and subsequently at JSC, revealed a darkening on the aluminum canister shield and other canister components. There has been no such observation of film contamination on the collector surfaces, and preliminary spectroscopic ellipsometry measurements support the theory that the films observed on the anodized aluminum components do not appear on the collectors to any significant extent. The Genesis Science Team has made an effort to characterize the thickness and composition of the brown stain and to determine if it is associated with molecular outgassing.Detailed examination of the surfaces within the Genesis science canister reveals that the brown contamination is observed to varying degrees, but only on surfaces exposed in space to the Sun and solar wind hydrogen. In addition, the materials affected are primarily composed of anodized aluminum. A sharp line separating the sun and shaded portion of the thermal closeout panel is shown. This piece was removed from a location near the gold foil collector within the canister. Future plans include a reassembly of the canister components to look for large-scale patterns of contamination within the canister to aid in revealing the root cause.

  12. Exploring Sound with Insects

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    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…

  13. Sunflower insect pests

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Like other annual crops, sunflowers are fed upon by a variety of insect pests capable of reducing yields. Though there are a few insects which are considered consistent or severe (e.g., sunflower moth, banded sunflower moth, red sunflower seed weevil), many more insects are capable of causing proble...

  14. Acoustic Monitoring of Insects

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Farmers, grain elevator managers, and food processors often sample grain for insect damaged kernels and numbers of live adult insects but these easily obtained measurements of insect levels do not provide reliable estimates of the typically much larger populations of internally feeding immature inse...

  15. Insects and Spiders.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National Audubon Society, New York, NY.

    This set of teaching aids consists of nine Audubon Nature Bulletins, providing teachers and students with informational reading on insects and spiders. The bulletins have these titles: What Good Are Insects, How Insects Benefit Man, Life of the Honey Bee, Ants and Their Fascinating Ways, Mosquitoes and Other Flies, Caterpillars, Spiders and Silk,…

  16. Committee on Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Sciences (CAMOS). Technical progress report, [February 1, 1991--January 31, 1992

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1992-03-01

    The Committee on Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Sciences is a standing committee under the auspices of the Board on Physics and Astronomy, Commission on Physical Sciences, Mathematics, and Applications of the National Academy of Sciences -- National Research Council. The atomic, molecular, and optical (AMO) sciences represent a broad and diverse field in which much of the research is carried out by small groups. These groups generally have not operated in concert with each other and, prior to the establishment of CAMOS, there was no single committee or organization that accepted the responsibility of monitoring the continuing development and assessing the general public health of the field as a whole. CAMOS has accepted this responsibility and currently provides a focus for the AMO community that is unique and essential. The membership of CAMOS is drawn from research laboratories in universities, industry, and government. Areas of expertise on the committee include atomic physics, molecular science, and optics. A special effort has been made to include a balanced representation from the three subfields. (A roster is attached.) CAMOS has conducted a number of studies related to the health of atomic and molecular science and is well prepared to response to requests for studies on specific issues. This report brief reviews the committee work of progress.

  17. Molecular biology in marine science: Scientific questions, technological approaches, and practical implications

    SciTech Connect

    1994-12-31

    The ocean plays an important role in regulating the earth`s climate, sustains a large portion of the earth`s biodiversity, is a tremendous reservoir of commercially important substances, and is used for a variety of often conflicting purposes. In recent decades marine scientists have discovered much about the ocean and its organisms, yet many important fundamental questions remain unanswered. Human populations have increased, particularly in coastal regions. As a result, the marine environment in these areas is increasingly disrupted by human activities, including pollution and the depletion of some ecologically and commercially important species. There is a sense of urgency about reducing human impacts on the ocean and a need to understand how altered ecosystems and the loss of marine species and biodiversity could affect society. During the past two decades, the development of sophisticated technologies and instruments for biomedical research has resulted in significant advances in the biological sciences. While some of these technologies have been readily incorporated into the study of marine organisms as models for understanding basic biology, the value of molecular techniques for addressing problems in marine biology and biological oceanography has only recently begun to be appreciated. This report defines critical scientific questions in marine biology and biological oceanography, describes the molecular technologies that could be used to answer these questions, and discusses some of the implications and economic opportunities that might result from this research which could potentially improve the international competitive position of the United States in the rapidly growing area of marine biotechnology. The committee recommends that the federal government provide the infrastructure necessary to use the techniques of molecular biology in the marine sciences.

  18. InsectBase: a resource for insect genomes and transcriptomes

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Chuanlin; Shen, Gengyu; Guo, Dianhao; Wang, Shuping; Ma, Xingzhou; Xiao, Huamei; Liu, Jinding; Zhang, Zan; Liu, Ying; Zhang, Yiqun; Yu, Kaixiang; Huang, Shuiqing; Li, Fei

    2016-01-01

    The genomes and transcriptomes of hundreds of insects have been sequenced. However, insect community lacks an integrated, up-to-date collection of insect gene data. Here, we introduce the first release of InsectBase, available online at http://www.insect-genome.com. The database encompasses 138 insect genomes, 116 insect transcriptomes, 61 insect gene sets, 36 gene families of 60 insects, 7544 miRNAs of 69 insects, 96 925 piRNAs of Drosophila melanogaster and Chilo suppressalis, 2439 lncRNA of Nilaparvata lugens, 22 536 pathways of 78 insects, 678 881 untranslated regions (UTR) of 84 insects and 160 905 coding sequences (CDS) of 70 insects. This release contains over 12 million sequences and provides search functionality, a BLAST server, GBrowse, insect pathway construction, a Facebook-like network for the insect community (iFacebook), and phylogenetic analysis of selected genes. PMID:26578584

  19. InsectBase: a resource for insect genomes and transcriptomes.

    PubMed

    Yin, Chuanlin; Shen, Gengyu; Guo, Dianhao; Wang, Shuping; Ma, Xingzhou; Xiao, Huamei; Liu, Jinding; Zhang, Zan; Liu, Ying; Zhang, Yiqun; Yu, Kaixiang; Huang, Shuiqing; Li, Fei

    2016-01-04

    The genomes and transcriptomes of hundreds of insects have been sequenced. However, insect community lacks an integrated, up-to-date collection of insect gene data. Here, we introduce the first release of InsectBase, available online at http://www.insect-genome.com. The database encompasses 138 insect genomes, 116 insect transcriptomes, 61 insect gene sets, 36 gene families of 60 insects, 7544 miRNAs of 69 insects, 96,925 piRNAs of Drosophila melanogaster and Chilo suppressalis, 2439 lncRNA of Nilaparvata lugens, 22,536 pathways of 78 insects, 678,881 untranslated regions (UTR) of 84 insects and 160,905 coding sequences (CDS) of 70 insects. This release contains over 12 million sequences and provides search functionality, a BLAST server, GBrowse, insect pathway construction, a Facebook-like network for the insect community (iFacebook), and phylogenetic analysis of selected genes.

  20. Genomics of adaptation to host-plants in herbivorous insects.

    PubMed

    Simon, Jean-Christophe; d'Alençon, Emmanuelle; Guy, Endrick; Jacquin-Joly, Emmanuelle; Jaquiéry, Julie; Nouhaud, Pierre; Peccoud, Jean; Sugio, Akiko; Streiff, Réjane

    2015-11-01

    Herbivorous insects represent the most species-rich lineages of metazoans. The high rate of diversification in herbivorous insects is thought to result from their specialization to distinct host-plants, which creates conditions favorable for the build-up of reproductive isolation and speciation. These conditions rely on constraints against the optimal use of a wide range of plant species, as each must constitute a viable food resource, oviposition site and mating site for an insect. Utilization of plants involves many essential traits of herbivorous insects, as they locate and select their hosts, overcome their defenses and acquire nutrients while avoiding intoxication. Although advances in understanding insect-plant molecular interactions have been limited by the complexity of insect traits involved in host use and the lack of genomic resources and functional tools, recent studies at the molecular level, combined with large-scale genomics studies at population and species levels, are revealing the genetic underpinning of plant specialization and adaptive divergence in non-model insect herbivores. Here, we review the recent advances in the genomics of plant adaptation in hemipterans and lepidopterans, two major insect orders, each of which includes a large number of crop pests. We focus on how genomics and post-genomics have improved our understanding of the mechanisms involved in insect-plant interactions by reviewing recent molecular discoveries in sensing, feeding, digesting and detoxifying strategies. We also present the outcomes of large-scale genomics approaches aimed at identifying loci potentially involved in plant adaptation in these insects.

  1. Molecular pathological epidemiology: new developing frontiers of big data science to study etiologies and pathogenesis.

    PubMed

    Hamada, Tsuyoshi; Keum, NaNa; Nishihara, Reiko; Ogino, Shuji

    2017-03-01

    Molecular pathological epidemiology (MPE) is an integrative field that utilizes molecular pathology to incorporate interpersonal heterogeneity of a disease process into epidemiology. In each individual, the development and progression of a disease are determined by a unique combination of exogenous and endogenous factors, resulting in different molecular and pathological subtypes of the disease. Based on "the unique disease principle," the primary aim of MPE is to uncover an interactive relationship between a specific environmental exposure and disease subtypes in determining disease incidence and mortality. This MPE approach can provide etiologic and pathogenic insights, potentially contributing to precision medicine for personalized prevention and treatment. Although breast, prostate, lung, and colorectal cancers have been among the most commonly studied diseases, the MPE approach can be used to study any disease. In addition to molecular features, host immune status and microbiome profile likely affect a disease process, and thus serve as informative biomarkers. As such, further integration of several disciplines into MPE has been achieved (e.g., pharmaco-MPE, immuno-MPE, and microbial MPE), to provide novel insights into underlying etiologic mechanisms. With the advent of high-throughput sequencing technologies, available genomic and epigenomic data have expanded dramatically. The MPE approach can also provide a specific risk estimate for each disease subgroup, thereby enhancing the impact of genome-wide association studies on public health. In this article, we present recent progress of MPE, and discuss the importance of accounting for the disease heterogeneity in the era of big-data health science and precision medicine.

  2. Purification and molecular cloning of cDNA for an inducible antibacterial protein of larvae of a coleopteran insect, Holotrichia diomphalia.

    PubMed

    Lee, S Y; Moon, H J; Kurata, S; Kurama, T; Natori, S; Lee, B L

    1994-01-01

    Injection of Escherichia coli into larvae of the coleopteran Holotrichia diomphalia results in the appearance of antibacterial activity in the hemolymph. An antibacterial protein, named holotricin 2, was purified from larvae of this insect and characterized. A cDNA clone for holotricin 2 was isolated and its complete sequence was determined. This protein was found to inhibit the growth of Gram-negative bacteria and to consist of 72-amino acid residues with no cysteine residues. Its amino acid sequence is similar to that of coleoptericine, an antibacterial protein isolated from larvae of the coleopteran Zophobas atratus.

  3. Molecular environmental science : an assessment of research accomplishments, available synchrotron radiation facilities, and needs.

    SciTech Connect

    Brown, G. E., Jr.; Sutton, S. R.; Bargar, J. R.; Shuh, D. K.; Fenter, P. A.; Kemner, K. M.

    2004-10-20

    Synchrotron-based techniques are fundamental to research in ''Molecular Environmental Science'' (MES), an emerging field that involves molecular-level studies of chemical and biological processes affecting the speciation, properties, and behavior of contaminants, pollutants, and nutrients in the ecosphere. These techniques enable the study of aqueous solute complexes, poorly crystalline materials, solid-liquid interfaces, mineral-aqueous solution interactions, microbial biofilm-heavy metal interactions, heavy metal-plant interactions, complex material microstructures, and nanomaterials, all of which are important components or processes in the environment. Basic understanding of environmental materials and processes at the molecular scale is essential for risk assessment and management, and reduction of environmental pollutants at field, landscape, and global scales. One of the main purposes of this report is to illustrate the role of synchrotron radiation (SR)-based studies in environmental science and related fields and their impact on environmental problems of importance to society. A major driving force for MES research is the need to characterize, treat, and/or dispose of vast quantities of contaminated materials, including groundwater, sediments, and soils, and to process wastes, at an estimated cost exceeding 150 billion dollars through 2070. A major component of this problem derives from high-level nuclear waste. Other significant components come from mining and industrial wastes, atmospheric pollutants derived from fossil fuel consumption, agricultural pesticides and fertilizers, and the pollution problems associated with animal waste run-off, all of which have major impacts on human health and welfare. Addressing these problems requires the development of new characterization and processing technologies--efforts that require information on the chemical speciation of heavy metals, radionuclides, and xenobiotic organic compounds and their reactions with

  4. Molecular Environmental Science: An Assessment of Research Accomplishments, Available Synchrotron Radiation Facilities, and Needs

    SciTech Connect

    Brown, G

    2004-02-05

    Synchrotron-based techniques are fundamental to research in ''Molecular Environmental Science'' (MES), an emerging field that involves molecular-level studies of chemical and biological processes affecting the speciation, properties, and behavior of contaminants, pollutants, and nutrients in the ecosphere. These techniques enable the study of aqueous solute complexes, poorly crystalline materials, solid-liquid interfaces, mineral-aqueous solution interactions, microbial biofilm-heavy metal interactions, heavy metal-plant interactions, complex material microstructures, and nanomaterials, all of which are important components or processes in the environment. Basic understanding of environmental materials and processes at the molecular scale is essential for risk assessment and management, and reduction of environmental pollutants at field, landscape, and global scales. One of the main purposes of this report is to illustrate the role of synchrotron radiation (SR)-based studies in environmental science and related fields and their impact on environmental problems of importance to society. A major driving force for MES research is the need to characterize, treat, and/or dispose of vast quantities of contaminated materials, including groundwater, sediments, and soils, and to process wastes, at an estimated cost exceeding 150 billion dollars through 2070. A major component of this problem derives from high-level nuclear waste. Other significant components come from mining and industrial wastes, atmospheric pollutants derived from fossil fuel consumption, agricultural pesticides and fertilizers, and the pollution problems associated with animal waste run-off, all of which have major impacts on human health and welfare. Addressing these problems requires the development of new characterization and processing technologies--efforts that require information on the chemical speciation of heavy metals, radionuclides, and xenobiotic organic compounds and their reactions with

  5. Molecular biology in marine science: Scientific questions, technological approaches, and practical implications

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-12-31

    The ocean plays an important role in regulating the earth`s climate, sustains a large portion of the earth`s biodiversity, is a tremendous reservoir of commercially important substances, and is used for a variety of often conflicting purposes. In recent decades marine scientists have discovered much about the ocean and its organisms, yet many important fundamental questions remain unanswered. Human populations have increased, particularly in coastal regions. As a result, the marine environment in these areas is increasingly disrupted by human activities, including pollution and the depletion of some ecologically and commercially important species. There is a sense of urgency about reducing human impacts on the ocean and a need to understand how altered ecosystems and the loss of marine species and biodiversity could affect society. This report describes molecular techniques that could be invaluable in addressing process-oriented problems in the ocean sciences that have perplexed oceanographers for decades, such as understanding the basis for biogeochemical processes, recruitment processes, upper-ocean dynamics, biological impacts of global warming, and ecological impacts of human activities. The coupling of highly sophisticated methods, such as satellite remote sensing, which permits synoptic monitoring of chemical, physical, and biological parameters over large areas, with the power of modern molecular tools for ground truthing at small scales could allow scientists to address questions about marine organisms and the ocean in which they live that could not be answered previously.

  6. The Microfluidics Flow and Transport Laboratory: A New User Facility at PNNL's Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oostrom, M.; Werth, C.; Wietsma, T.; Hess, N.

    2008-12-01

    The Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory at PNNL, in collaboration with the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana, has developed a microfluidics capability to investigate the effects of fluid flow and transport at the microscale. Currently the EMSL houses the Subsurface Flow and Transport Laboratory (SFTL) in which EMSL Users have the opportunity to conduct column- and intermediate-scale research. The new Microfluidics Flow and Transport Laboratory (MFTL) will address fundamental scaling issues associated with fluid flow and reactive transport from both a combined experimental and theoretical approach at the micron scale, bridge the gap in experimental capabilities from the molecular scale within EMSL to the laboratory scales currently available in the SFTL, and permit simultaneous spatially and time resolved spectroscopic examination of geochemical and/or biogeochemical processes. Micromodels are two- dimensional representations of porous media etched in into silicon wafers, glass or polymers. Better control of pore network geometry is generally obtained by etching silicon. Pore sizes are typically on the order of tens of microns, but can be configured to be both smaller and larger. Fluid injection occurs with low-pulsation, high-precision syringe pumps. Images are obtained with an inverted fluorescent microscope. In this presentation, the new laboratory will be described and the mechanisms of user access will be explained.

  7. A study of the development of collaborative explanations in molecular genetics by secondary science students

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gribbin, Mary Elizabeth

    Current science education standards documents include recommendations that learning activities employ authentic scientific inquiry. The product of scientific inquiry is a scientific explanation, and student inquiry should therefore be directed toward development of explanations. Science is a collaborative enterprise, and inquiry learning should include activities requiring collaboration. The ability of secondary students in an academic enrichment program in molecular genetics to collaborate to develop explanations in response to assigned questions for discussion was investigated in this study. The following research questions were addressed: (1) What kinds of explanations do students produce? (2) What kinds of cognitive and social processes do students engage in? (3) Which cognitive and social processes promote the development of better explanations? The participants of this study were thirty-four students from nineteen New Jersey high schools who took part in a four-week summer enrichment program in genetics and molecular biology at the Waksman Institute, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey. The students were of high or very high academic ability. Students met once each week in small groups to discuss a challenging science question presented by the instructor. These discussions were audio taped, and data used in the study were obtained primarily from transcripts of the tapes. The procedure used to evaluate the students' arguments was based upon methods for analyzing the structure of arguments described by Chinn & Anderson (1999) and Halpern (1996), and employed taxonomies developed by the investigator. The taxonomies were shown to be an effective tool for evaluating and characterizing student discussions in terms of logical reasoning, content knowledge, and collaboration. Analyses of the transcripts indicated that groups in which the students had prior knowledge of the content related to the discussion questions produced complete and valid arguments, but

  8. Towards the elements of successful insect Ribonucleic acid interference (RNAi)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Ribonucleic acid interference (RNAi), the sequence-specific suppression of gene expression, offers great opportunities for insect science, especially to analyze gene function, manage pest populations, and reduce disease pathogens. The accumulating body of literature on insect RNAi has revealed that ...

  9. [Advances of the study of sarcosaphagous insects in forensic medicine].

    PubMed

    Wang, Bang-Qin; Cai, Ji-Feng; Ge, Yang; Li, Fa-Zhao; Man, Yi; Chang, Yun-Feng

    2008-06-01

    The study of sarcosaphagous insects is a subspecialty in forensic medicine based on the knowledge of entomology. It could help to determine the time of death, especially the postmortem interval in decomposed cases. This paper explores its history, species and erosion process of sarcosaphagous insects. It reviews the species identifying methods with molecular biology and entomological morphology. Details of its application in estimating postmortem interval in recent years and study of sarcosaphagous insects in the field of forensic medicine are summarized.

  10. The rapidly changing landscape of insect phylogenetics.

    PubMed

    Maddison, David R

    2016-12-01

    Insect phylogenetics is being profoundly changed by many innovations. Although rapid developments in genomics have center stage, key progress has been made in phenomics, field and museum science, digital databases and pipelines, analytical tools, and the culture of science. The importance of these methodological and cultural changes to the pace of inference of the hexapod Tree of Life is discussed. The innovations have the potential, when synthesized and mobilized in ways as yet unforeseen, to shine light on the million or more clades in insects, and infer their composition with confidence. There are many challenges to overcome before insects can enter the 'phylocognisant age', but because of the promise of genomics, phenomics, and informatics, that is now an imaginable future.

  11. Molecular cloning, partial genomic structure and functional characterization of succinic semialdehyde dehydrogenase genes from the parasitic insects Lucilia cuprina and Ctenocephalides felis.

    PubMed

    Rothacker, B; Werr, M; Ilg, T

    2008-06-01

    The enzyme succinic semialdehyde dehydrogenase (SSADH; EC1.2.1.24) is a component of the gamma-aminobutyric acid degradation pathway in mammals and is essential for development and function of the nervous system. Here we report the identification, cDNA cloning and functional expression of SSADH from the parasitic insects Lucilia cuprina and Ctenocephalides felis. The recombinant proteins possess potent NAD+-dependent SSADH activity, while their catalytic efficiency for other aldehyde substrates is lower. A genomic copy of the L. cuprina SSADH gene contains two introns, while a genomic gene version of C. felis is devoid of introns. In contrast to the single copy SSADH genes in Drosophila melanogaster and mammals, in L. cuprina and C. felis, multiple SSADH gene copies are present in the genome.

  12. 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

    PubMed Central

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

    2007-01-01

    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 Navs (voltage-gated Na+ channels) like the structurally dissimilar scorpion α-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 Navs, 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 LqhαIT (from the scorpion Leiurus quinquestriatus) on binding to cockroach neuronal membranes (Ki=21.4±7.1 nM), and to inhibit the inactivation of Drosophila melanogaster channel, DmNav1, but not that of mammalian Navs 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 β-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 DmNav1, 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. PMID:17492942

  13. Prostaglandins and Their Receptors in Insect Biology

    PubMed Central

    Stanley, David; Kim, Yonggyun

    2011-01-01

    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. 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. 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. We conclude that research into PGs and their receptors in insects will lead to important advances in our understanding of insect biology. PMID:22654840

  14. Prostaglandins and their receptors in insect biology.

    PubMed

    Stanley, David; Kim, Yonggyun

    2011-01-01

    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. 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. PGs act in several crucial areas of insect biology. In reproduction, a specific PG, PGE(2), 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. We conclude that research into PGs and their receptors in insects will lead to important advances in our understanding of insect biology.

  15. Multiple activities of insect repellents on odorant receptors in mosquitoes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Several lines of evidence suggest that insect repellent molecules reduce mosquito-host contacts by interacting with odorants and odorant receptors (ORs) ultimately affecting olfactory-driven behaviors. We describe the molecular effects of ten insect repellents and a pyrethroid insecticide with known...

  16. Bug Talk: A Learning Module on Insect Communication

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bergman, Daniel J.

    2008-01-01

    The study of insects (entomology) can be used to stimulate students' interest in science and nature. It can develop students' understanding of fundamental science concepts, awareness of interdisciplinary connections, and mastery of science process skills. This teaching module provides opportunities for middle school students (Grades 5-8) to learn…

  17. Molecular tools for bathing water assessment in Europe: Balancing social science research with a rapidly developing environmental science evidence-base.

    PubMed

    Oliver, David M; Hanley, Nick D; van Niekerk, Melanie; Kay, David; Heathwaite, A Louise; Rabinovici, Sharyl J M; Kinzelman, Julie L; Fleming, Lora E; Porter, Jonathan; Shaikh, Sabina; Fish, Rob; Chilton, Sue; Hewitt, Julie; Connolly, Elaine; Cummins, Andy; Glenk, Klaus; McPhail, Calum; McRory, Eric; McVittie, Alistair; Giles, Amanna; Roberts, Suzanne; Simpson, Katherine; Tinch, Dugald; Thairs, Ted; Avery, Lisa M; Vinten, Andy J A; Watts, Bill D; Quilliam, Richard S

    2016-02-01

    The use of molecular tools, principally qPCR, versus traditional culture-based methods for quantifying microbial parameters (e.g., Fecal Indicator Organisms) in bathing waters generates considerable ongoing debate at the science-policy interface. Advances in science have allowed the development and application of molecular biological methods for rapid (~2 h) quantification of microbial pollution in bathing and recreational waters. In contrast, culture-based methods can take between 18 and 96 h for sample processing. Thus, molecular tools offer an opportunity to provide a more meaningful statement of microbial risk to water-users by providing near-real-time information enabling potentially more informed decision-making with regard to water-based activities. However, complementary studies concerning the potential costs and benefits of adopting rapid methods as a regulatory tool are in short supply. We report on findings from an international Working Group that examined the breadth of social impacts, challenges, and research opportunities associated with the application of molecular tools to bathing water regulations.

  18. Insects: Bugged Out!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    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…

  19. Insects and Bugs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    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.…

  20. Insect Control Without Bt

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Understanding potential to grow conventional cottons that do not express Bt insecticidal proteins requires an appreciation for the historical impact of Bt cotton on cotton insects. Insects have long been exposed to Bacillus thuringiensis, a common soil-borne bacterium. Commercial deployment of B...

  1. Magnetic compasses in insects

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The use of magnetic information for orientation and navigation is a widespread phenomenon in animals. In contrast to navigational systems in vertebrates, our understanding of the mechanisms underlying the insect magnetic perception and use of the information is at an early stage. Some insects use ma...

  2. Sterile Insect Quality

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This chapter discusses the history of the development of quality control tchnology, the principles and philosophy of assessing insect quality, and the relative importance of the various parameters used to assess insect quality in the context of mass-rearing for the SIT. Quality control is most devel...

  3. Insect and arachnid hypersensitivity.

    PubMed

    Bevier, D E

    1999-11-01

    Insect hypersensitivity reactions can have a large number of clinical presentations. The majority of reactions are pruritic and involve the short- or sparsely haired areas of the body. Most are associated with eosinophilic infiltration into the skin, often in a perivascular pattern. The diagnosis may be based on compatible clinical signs and improvement with aggressive insect control and, in some cases, confirmation via provocative exposure. Intradermal, prick, or serum testing for allergen-specific IgE can be used to document the presence of reaginic antibodies against insect allergens. Treatments include avoidance, aggressive insect control, and symptomatic support; in some cases, immunotherapy may be useful in decreasing the severity of clinical reactions to insects.

  4. Development of THz wave oscillation and its application to molecular sciences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nishizawa, J.

    In 1967, a THz wave was generated for the first time using a free electron laser; however, the device was too expensive to be used widely. The author published the idea of THz wave generation by use of resonating vibration between paired atoms in polymer or crystal in 1965, and succeeded with K. Suto to generate a 12 THz wave in 1983. In 1999, the author invited K. Kawase and H. Ito to Sendai RIKEN to realize the concept by use of dielectrics; in 2000, they succeeded in realizing a sweep generator. In the same year, the author suggested the idea of applying the THz wave to cancer diagnosis and treatment, particularly by improving heating selectivity: This enhances the effect of medications by raising only the temperature of the cancer itself, not of the surrounding atomic pairs in the neighborhood. These applications are expected to spread quickly as powerful methodology based on molecular science. The reason for this is that the much improved waveform generated enables higher selectivity, allowing the detection of the existence of abnormal polymer near the paired atoms by measuring resonating frequency between paired atoms.

  5. Baculovirus-insect cell expression systems.

    PubMed

    Jarvis, Donald L

    2009-01-01

    In the early 1980s, the first-published reports of baculovirus-mediated foreign gene expression stimulated great interest in the use of baculovirus-insect cell systems for recombinant protein production. Initially, this system appeared to be the first that would be able to provide the high production levels associated with bacterial systems and the eukaryotic protein processing capabilities associated with mammalian systems. Experience and an increased understanding of basic insect cell biology have shown that these early expectations were not completely realistic. Nevertheless, baculovirus-insect cell expression systems have the capacity to produce many recombinant proteins at high levels and they also provide significant eukaryotic protein processing capabilities. Furthermore, important technological advances over the past 20 years have improved upon the original methods developed for the isolation of baculovirus expression vectors, which were inefficient, required at least some specialized expertise and, therefore, induced some frustration among those who used the original baculovirus-insect cell expression system. Today, virtually any investigator with basic molecular biology training can relatively quickly and efficiently isolate a recombinant baculovirus vector and use it to produce their favorite protein in an insect cell culture. This chapter will begin with background information on the basic baculovirus-insect cell expression system and will then focus on recent developments that have greatly facilitated the ability of an average investigator to take advantage of its attributes.

  6. Using baculovirus/insect cell expressed recombinant actin to study the molecular pathogenesis of HCM caused by actin mutation A331P

    PubMed Central

    Bai, Fan; Caster, Hannah M.; Rubenstein, Peter A.; Dawson, John F.; Kawai, Masataka

    2014-01-01

    Recombinant WT human cardiac actin (WT actin) was expressed using the baculovirus/insect cell expression system, purified, and used to reconstitute the thin-filament of bovine cardiac muscle fibers, together with bovine cardiac tropomyosin (Tm) and troponin (Tn). Effects of [Ca2+], [ATP], [phosphate] and [ADP] on tension and tension transients were studied at 25°C by using sinusoidal analysis, and the results were compared with those of native fibers and fibers reconstituted with purified bovine cardiac actin (BVC actin). In actin filament reconstituted fibers (without Tm/Tn), those reconstituted with WT actin showed exactly the same active tension as those reconstituted with purified BVC actin (WT: 0.75±0.06 T0, N=11; BVC: 0.73±0.07 T0, N=12, where T0 is tension of original fibers before extraction). After Tm/Tn reconstitution, fibers reconstituted with WT actin generated 0.85±0.06 T0 (N=11) compared to 0.98±0.04 T0 (N=12) recovered by those reconstituted with BVC actin. In the presence of Tm/Tn, WT actin reconstituted fibers showed exactly the same Ca2+ sensitivity as those of the native fibers and BVC actin reconstituted fibers (pCa50: native fibers: 5.69±0.01, N=10; WT: 5.69±0.02, N=11; BVC: 5.68±0.02, N=12). Sinusoidal analysis showed that the cross-bridge kinetics were the same among native fibers, BVC actin reconstituted fibers, and WT actin reconstituted fibers, followed by reconstitution of Tm/Tn. These results demonstrate that baculovirus/insect cell expressed actin has no significant differences from tissue purified actin and can be used for thin-filament reconstitution assays. One hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) causing actin mutant A331P actin was also expressed and studied similarly, and the results were compared to those of the WT actin. In the reconstituted fibers, A331P significantly decreased the tension both in the absence of Tm/Tn (0.55±0.03 T0, N=13) and in their presence (0.65±0.02 T0, N=13) compared to those of the WT (0.75±0

  7. Vision in flying insects.

    PubMed

    Egelhaaf, Martin; Kern, Roland

    2002-12-01

    Vision guides flight behaviour in numerous insects. Despite their small brain, insects easily outperform current man-made autonomous vehicles in many respects. Examples are the virtuosic chasing manoeuvres male flies perform as part of their mating behaviour and the ability of bees to assess, on the basis of visual motion cues, the distance travelled in a novel environment. Analyses at both the behavioural and neuronal levels are beginning to unveil reasons for such extraordinary capabilities of insects. One recipe for their success is the adaptation of visual information processing to the specific requirements of the behavioural tasks and to the specific spatiotemporal properties of the natural input.

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

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    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...

  9. “The Environment is Everything That Isn't Me”: Molecular Mechanisms and Evolutionary Dynamics of Insect Clocks in Variable Surroundings

    PubMed Central

    Rivas, Gustavo B. S.; Bauzer, Luiz G. S. da R.; Meireles-Filho, Antonio C. A.

    2016-01-01

    Circadian rhythms are oscillations in behavior, metabolism and physiology that have a period close to 24 h. These rhythms are controlled by an internal pacemaker that evolved under strong selective pressures imposed by environmental cyclical changes, mainly of light and temperature. The molecular nature of the circadian pacemaker was extensively studied in a number of organisms under controlled laboratory conditions. But although these studies were fundamental to our understanding of the circadian clock, most of the environmental conditions used resembled rather crudely the relatively constant situation at lower latitudes. At higher latitudes light-dark and temperature cycles vary considerably across different seasons, with summers having long and hot days and winters short and cold ones. Considering these differences and other external cues, such as moonlight, recent studies in more natural and semi-natural situations revealed unexpected features at both molecular and behavioral levels, highlighting the dramatic influence of multiple environmental variables in the molecular clockwork. This emphasizes the importance of studying the circadian clock in the wild, where seasonal environmental changes fine-tune the underlying circadian mechanism, affecting population dynamics and impacting the geographical variation in clock genes. Indeed, latitudinal clines in clock gene frequencies suggest that natural selection and demography shape the circadian clock over wide geographical ranges. In this review we will discuss the recent advances in understanding the molecular underpinnings of the circadian clock, how it resonates with the surrounding variables (both in the laboratory and in semi-natural conditions) and its impact on population dynamics and evolution. In addition, we will elaborate on how next-generation sequencing technologies will complement classical reductionist approaches by identifying causal variants in natural populations that will link genetic variation to

  10. A post-genomic surprise. The molecular reinscription of race in science, law and medicine.

    PubMed

    Duster, Troy

    2015-03-01

    The completion of the first draft of the Human Genome Map in 2000 was widely heralded as the promise and future of genetics-based medicines and therapies - so much so that pundits began referring to the new century as 'The Century of Genetics'. Moreover, definitive assertions about the overwhelming similarities of all humans' DNA (99.9 per cent) by the leaders of the Human Genome Project were trumpeted as the end of racial thinking about racial taxonomies of human genetic differences. But the first decade of the new century brought unwelcomed surprises. First, gene therapies turned out to be far more complicated than any had anticipated - and instead the pharmaceutical industry turned to a focus on drugs that might be 'related' to population differences based upon genetic markers. While the language of 'personalized medicine' dominated this frame, research on racially and ethnically designated populations differential responsiveness to drugs dominated the empirical work in the field. Ancestry testing and 'admixture research' would play an important role in a new kind of molecular reification of racial categories. Moreover, the capacity of the super-computer to map differences reverberated into personal identification that would affect both the criminal justice system and forensic science, and generate new levels of concern about personal privacy. Social scientists in general, and sociologists in particular, have been caught short by these developments - relying mainly on assertions that racial categories are socially constructed, regionally and historically contingent, and politically arbitrary. While these assertions are true, the imprimatur of scientific legitimacy has shifted the burden, since now 'admixture research' can claim that its results get at the 'reality' of human differentiation, not the admittedly flawed social constructions of racial categories. Yet what was missing from this framing of the problem: 'admixture research' is itself based upon socially

  11. Insect bites and stings

    MedlinePlus

    Bee sting; Bites - insects, bees, and spiders; Black widow spider bite; Brown recluse bite; Flea bite; Honey bee or hornet sting; Lice bites; Mite bite; Scorpion bite; Spider bite; Wasp sting; Yellow jacket ...

  12. Feeding the insect industry

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    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...

  13. Corazonin in insects.

    PubMed

    Predel, Reinhard; Neupert, Susanne; Russell, William K; Scheibner, Olaf; Nachman, Ronald J

    2007-01-01

    Corazonin is a peptidergic neurohormone of insects that is expressed in neurosecretory neurons of the pars lateralis of the protocerebrum and transported via nervi corporis cardiaci to the storage lobes of the corpora cardiaca. This peptide occurs with a single isoform in all insects studied so far, with the exception of the Coleoptera in which no corazonin form could be detected. Very few modifications of [Arg(7)]-corazonin, originally isolated from cockroaches, are known, namely [His(7)]-corazonin which is expressed in certain locusts and the stick insect Carausius morosus, and [Thr(4), His(7)]-corazonin recently described from the honey bee Apis mellifera. In this study, we performed a comprehensive screening for corazonin in the different insect groups after detecting of a fourth isoform in a crane fly, Tipula sp. ([Gln(10)]-corazonin). [Arg(7)]-corazonin is distributed in most major lineages of insects, and is thus the ancient form which was present at the time the phylum Insecta evolved. The replacement of Arg with His at position 7 from the N-terminus occurred several times in the evolution of insects. The third isoform, [Thr(4), His(7)]-corazonin, seems to be restricted to bees (Apidae); whereas wasps (Vespidae) and a bumble bee (Apidae) express other corazonins, specifically [His(7)]-corazonin and [Tyr(3), Gln(7), Gln(10)]-corazonin, respectively. A novel corazonin form, [His(4), Gln(7)]-corazonin, was also detected in all South African members of the newly described insect order Mantophasmatodea. The [His(4), Gln(7)]-corazonin separates these species from the Namibian Mantophasmatodea which express [Arg(7)]-corazonin and can be used as a distinct character to distinguish these morphologically similar insects.

  14. Important Insect Pests of Fruit - Important Insect Pests of Nuts - Field Crop Insect Pests - Insect Pests of Vegetable Crops.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gesell, Stanley G.; And Others

    This document consists of four agriculture extension service publications from Pennsylvania State University. The titles are: (1) Important Insect Pests of Fruit; (2) Important Insect Pests of Nuts; (3) Field Crop Insect Pests; and (4) Insect Pests of Vegetable Crops. The first publication gives the hosts, injury, and description of 22 insect…

  15. Science.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Roach, Linda E., Ed.

    This document contains the following papers on science instruction and technology: "A 3-D Journey in Space: A New Visual Cognitive Adventure" (Yoav Yair, Rachel Mintz, and Shai Litvak); "Using Collaborative Inquiry and Interactive Technologies in an Environmental Science Project for Middle School Teachers: A Description and…

  16. Molecular Mechanistic Reasoning: Toward Bridging the Gap between the Molecular and Cellular Levels in Life Science Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    van Mil, Marc H. W.; Postma, Paulien A.; Boerwinkel, Dirk Jan; Klaassen, Kees; Waarlo, Arend Jan

    2016-01-01

    Although learning about DNA, RNA, and proteins is part of the upper secondary biology curriculum in most countries, many studies report that students fail to connect molecular knowledge to phenomena at the higher level of cells, organs, and organisms. As a result, many students use memorization and rote learning as a coping strategy when presented…

  17. Insect--plant adaptations.

    PubMed

    Southwood, T R

    1984-01-01

    The adaptation of insects to plants probably commenced in the early Permian period, though most current associations will be more recent. A major burst of adaptation must have followed the rise of the Angiosperms in the Cretaceous period, though some particular associations are as recent as this century. Living plants form a large proportion of the potential food in most habitats, though insects have had to overcome certain general hurdles to live and feed on them. Insects affect the reproduction and survival of plants, and thus the diversity of plant secondary chemicals may have evolved as a response. Where an insect species has a significant effect on a plant species that is its only host, coevolution may be envisaged. A spectacular example is provided by Heliconius butterflies and passion flower vines, studied by L.E. Gilbert and others. But such cases may be likened to 'vortices in the evolutionary stream': most plant species are influenced by a range of phytophagous insects so that selection will be for general defences--a situation termed diffuse coevolution. Evidence is presented on recent host-plant shifts to illustrate both the restrictions and the flexibility in current insect-plant associations.

  18. Agricultural applications of insect ecological genomics.

    PubMed

    Poelchau, Monica F; Coates, Brad S; Childers, Christopher P; Peréz de León, Adalberto A; Evans, Jay D; Hackett, Kevin; Shoemaker, DeWayne

    2016-02-01

    Agricultural entomology is poised to benefit from the application of ecological genomics, particularly the fields of biofuels generation and pest control. Metagenomic methods can characterize microbial communities of termites, wood-boring beetles and livestock pests, and transcriptomic approaches reveal molecular bases behind wood-digesting capabilities of these insects, leading to potential mechanisms for biofuel generation. Genome sequences are being exploited to develop new pest control methods, identify candidate antigens to vaccinate livestock, and discover RNAi target sequences and potential non-target effects in other insects. Gene content analyses of pest genome sequences and their endosymbionts suggest metabolic interdependencies between organisms, exposing potential gene targets for insect control. Finally, genome-wide association studies and genotyping by high-throughput sequencing promise to improve management of pesticide resistance.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  20. Phylogenetic Origin and Diversification of RNAi Pathway Genes in Insects.

    PubMed

    Dowling, Daniel; Pauli, Thomas; Donath, Alexander; Meusemann, Karen; Podsiadlowski, Lars; Petersen, Malte; Peters, Ralph S; Mayer, Christoph; Liu, Shanlin; Zhou, Xin; Misof, Bernhard; Niehuis, Oliver

    2017-01-06

    RNA interference (RNAi) refers to the set of molecular processes found in eukaryotic organisms in which small RNA molecules 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 Transcriptome Evolution) project as well as other resources such as i5K (5000 Insect Genome Project). Specifically, we traced the origin of the double stranded RNA binding protein R2D2 to the last common ancestor of winged insects (Pterygota), the loss of Sid-1/Tag-130 orthologs in Antliophora (fleas, flies and relatives, and scorpionflies in a broad sense), and confirm previous evidence for the splitting of the Argonaute proteins Aubergine and Piwi in Brachyceran flies (Diptera, Brachycera). Our study offers new reference points for future experimental research on RNAi-related pathway genes in insects.

  1. Fungus-insect gall of Phlebopus portentosus.

    PubMed

    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.

  2. Shifting behaviour: epigenetic reprogramming in eusocial insects.

    PubMed

    Patalano, Solenn; Hore, Timothy A; Reik, Wolf; Sumner, Seirian

    2012-06-01

    Epigenetic modifications are ancient and widely utilised mechanisms that have been recruited across fungi, plants and animals for diverse but fundamental biological functions, such as cell differentiation. Recently, a functional DNA methylation system was identified in the honeybee, where it appears to underlie queen and worker caste differentiation. This discovery, along with other insights into the epigenetics of social insects, allows provocative analogies to be drawn between insect caste differentiation and cellular differentiation, particularly in mammals. Developing larvae in social insect colonies are totipotent: they retain the ability to specialise as queens or workers, in a similar way to the totipotent cells of early embryos before they differentiate into specific cell lineages. Further, both differentiating cells and insect castes lose phenotypic plasticity by committing to their lineage, losing the ability to be readily reprogrammed. Hence, a comparison of the epigenetic mechanisms underlying lineage differentiation (and reprogramming) between cells and social insects is worthwhile. Here we develop a conceptual model of how loss and regain of phenotypic plasticity might be conserved for individual specialisation in both cells and societies. This framework forges a novel link between two fields of biological research, providing predictions for a unified approach to understanding the molecular mechanisms underlying biological complexity.

  3. Insect bite reactions.

    PubMed

    Singh, Sanjay; Mann, Baldeep Kaur

    2013-01-01

    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 serious adverse effects

  4. Critical quantities for solar system science in atomic and molecular reactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shemansky, D. E.

    1990-05-01

    This paper reviews some of the more critical issues in planetary science that depend on our determination of basic reaction parameters. The discussion is not meant to be comprehensive, but three research domains have been selected because of their distnct dependence for advancement on basic physical and chemical properties of common atomic and molecular species. (1) The giant outer planets, with atmospheres dominated by hydrogen all show temperatures at the top of the thermospheres hundreds of degrees higher than expectation on the basis of solar energy deposition. The search for an explanation is a current major issue in atmospheric research. One of the most serious problems in this pursuit is in the determination of basic ionospheric physical chemistry; the identification of the major ion species. We are in need of rates for reactions critical to this issue. (2) The sulfur/oxygen plsama torus at the orbit of Jupiter's satellite Io dominates the magnetosphere, and has been a persistent relatively stable feature for at least a decade. The mechanisms by which energy is inserted to maintain the system, have remained unresolved since the discovery of the system. Heterogeneous sources must be invoked in order to explain the plasma temperature. The central problem in determining radial energy input distributions is in the conflict that has developed recently between calculated charge exchange rate coefficients, observed ion partitioning, and calculated diffusion rates. It appears that we need an accurate determination of charge exchange and dielectronic recombination rate coefficients in order to advance our understanding of the systems. (3) Recent observations of the Moon and Mercury have revealed the presence of the minor elements sodium and potassium. One of the consequences of this remarkable discovery is the realization that a major cosmic element, oxygen, has never been detected on the Moon, although the known loss processes for sodium and potassium are

  5. Molecular Identification of an Invasive Wood-Boring Insect Lyctus brunneus (Coleoptera: Bostrichidae: Lyctinae) Using Frass by Loop-Mediated Isothermal Amplification and Nested PCR Assays.

    PubMed

    Ide, Tatsuya; Kanzaki, Natsumi; Ohmura, Wakako; Okabe, Kimiko

    2016-03-27

    Lyctus brunneus(Stephens) is one of the most destructive and worldwide invasive pests of seasoned woods for wooden products. This and other pestLyctusspecies have had their distribution expanded by international and domestic human transportation of infested wood and wood products. Rapid detection and accurate identification ofLyctusspecies are effective tools for helping to eradicate them in new introduction sites. The accurate species-level identification of adults requires expert knowledge about their morphology. However, it takes much time and effort to recover suitable adult specimens because they are borers inside wood. Frass ofLyctusspecies can easily be detected and recovered in and around infested wood. Thus, frass was tested to see if it was a suitable sample to allow development of a rapid and technically easy molecular detection and identification method forL.brunneus.Species-specific primers were designed from the cytochrome c oxidase subunit I region ofL.brunneusand used in development and testing of methods for successfully identifying them from their frass using the loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) or species-specific nested polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assays. The LAMP assay was faster and more sensitive for detecting the presence of DNA derived fromL.brunneusin their frass than the nested PCR assay. These methodologies will be applicable for the rapid detection and identification of other wood-boring invasive pests in regulatory applications.

  6. Current excitement from insect muscarinic receptors.

    PubMed

    Trimmer, B A

    1995-02-01

    Recent electrophysiological, pharmacological and molecular studies suggest that muscarinic ACh receptors (mAChRs) in insects are related to, but distinct from, their mammalian counterparts. Insect mAChRs perform two primary roles that are distinguished by their locations. Presynaptic mAChRs, present on sensory terminals, inhibit transmitter release, thereby reducing the effectiveness of specific afferent inputs. In contrast, postsynaptic mAChRs depolarize and increase the excitability of motoneurons and interneurons, thereby acting as dynamic-gain controls. This postsynaptic modulation is achieved in different ways in specific neurons but generally results from the activation of persistent inward and outward currents. At the level of neural processing, these distinct roles enable insect mAChRs to regulate the transfer of sensory information, and modulate the contributions of central neurons to central pattern generators and reflexes. Because these phenomena can be studied in identified neurons, a combination of physiological and molecular studies of mAChRs in insects should help to elucidate some of their behavioral roles. Furthermore, such studies could lead to the identification of general mechanisms of functional plasticity in neuronal networks.

  7. Behavioral Immunity in Insects

    PubMed Central

    de Roode, Jacobus C.; Lefèvre, Thierry

    2012-01-01

    Parasites can dramatically reduce the fitness of their hosts, and natural selection should favor defense mechanisms that can protect hosts against disease. Much work has focused on understanding genetic and physiological immunity against parasites, but hosts can also use behaviors to avoid infection, reduce parasite growth or alleviate disease symptoms. It is increasingly recognized that such behaviors are common in insects, providing strong protection against parasites and parasitoids. We review the current evidence for behavioral immunity in insects, present a framework for investigating such behavior, and emphasize that behavioral immunity may act through indirect rather than direct fitness benefits. We also discuss the implications for host-parasite co-evolution, local adaptation, and the evolution of non-behavioral physiological immune systems. Finally, we argue that the study of behavioral immunity in insects has much to offer for investigations in vertebrates, in which this topic has traditionally been studied. PMID:26466629

  8. Cognition in insects

    PubMed Central

    Webb, Barbara

    2012-01-01

    A traditional view of cognition is that it involves an internal process that represents, tracks or predicts an external process. This is not a general characteristic of all complex neural processing or feedback control, but rather implies specific forms of processing giving rise to specific behavioural capabilities. In this paper, I will review the evidence for such capabilities in insect navigation and learning. Do insects know where they are, or do they only know what to do? Do they learn what stimuli mean, or do they only learn how to behave? PMID:22927570

  9. Insect Repellents: Protect Your Child from Insect Bites

    MedlinePlus

    ... 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 ...

  10. Animal Science.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    VanCleave, Janice

    2001-01-01

    Presents a set of hands-on, outdoor science experiments designed to teach elementary school students about animal adaptation. The experiments focus on: how color camouflage affects an insect population; how spiderlings find a home; and how chameleons camouflage themselves by changing color. (SM)

  11. Applications of neural networks to real-time data processing at the Environmental and Molecular Sciences Laboratory (EMSL)

    SciTech Connect

    Keller, P.E.; Kouzes, R.T.; Kangas, L.J.

    1993-06-01

    Detailed design of the Environmental and Molecular Sciences Laboratory (EMSL) at the Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL) is nearing completion and construction is scheduled to begin later this year. This facility will assist in the environmental restoration and waste management mission at the Hanford Site. This paper identifies several real-time data processing applications within the EMSL where neural networks can potentially be beneficial. These applications include real-time sensor data acquisition and analysis, spectral analysis, process control, theoretical modeling, and data compression.

  12. Planting sentinel European trees in eastern Asia as a novel method to identify potential insect pest invaders.

    PubMed

    Roques, Alain; Fan, Jian-Ting; Courtial, Béatrice; Zhang, Yan-Zhuo; Yart, Annie; Auger-Rozenberg, Marie-Anne; Denux, Olivier; Kenis, Marc; Baker, Richard; Sun, Jiang-Hua

    2015-01-01

    Quarantine measures to prevent insect invasions tend to focus on well-known pests but a large proportion of the recent invaders were not known to cause significant damage in their native range, or were not even known to science before their introduction. A novel method is proposed to detect new potential pests of woody plants in their region of origin before they are introduced to a new continent. Since Asia is currently considered to be the main supplier of insect invaders to Europe, sentinel trees were planted in China during 2007-2011 as an early warning tool to identify the potential for additional Asian insect species to colonize European trees. Seedlings (1-1.5 m tall) of five broadleaved (Quercus petraea, Q. suber, Q. ilex, Fagus sylvatica, and Carpinus betulus) and two conifer species (Abies alba and Cupressus sempervirens) were planted in blocks of 100 seedlings at two widely separated sites (one in a nursery near Beijing and the other in a forest environment near Fuyang in eastern China), and then regularly surveyed for colonization by insects. A total of 104 insect species, mostly defoliators, were observed on these new hosts, and at least six species were capable of larval development. Although a number of the insects observed were probably incidental feeders, 38 species had more than five colonization events, mostly infesting Q. petraea, and could be considered as being capable of switching to European trees if introduced to Europe. Three years was shown to be an appropriate duration for the experiment, since the rate of colonization then tended to plateau. A majority of the identified species appeared to have switched from agricultural crops and fruit trees rather than from forest trees. Although these results are promising, the method is not appropriate for xylophagous pests and other groups developing on larger trees. Apart from the logistical problems, the identification to species level of the specimens collected was a major difficulty. This

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

    PubMed

    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.

  14. Dispersal of forest insects

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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.

  15. Recycled Insect Models

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rule, Audrey C.; Meyer, Mary Ann

    2007-01-01

    This article presents an engaging activity in which high school students use a dichotomous key to guide the creation and classification of model insects from recycled plastic lids and containers. Besides teaching the use of a dichotomous key and the effect of evolutionary descent upon groupings of organisms, this activity focuses on an…

  16. Insect mass production technologies

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Insects provide a very promising alternative for the future production of animal protein. Their nutritional value in conjunction with their food conversion efficiency and low water requirements, make them a more sustainable choice for the production of food and animal origin. However, to realize the...

  17. Colour constancy in insects.

    PubMed

    Chittka, Lars; Faruq, Samia; Skorupski, Peter; Werner, Annette

    2014-06-01

    Colour constancy is the perceptual phenomenon that the colour of an object appears largely unchanged, even if the spectral composition of the illuminating light changes. Colour constancy has been found in all insect species so far tested. Especially the pollinating insects offer a remarkable opportunity to study the ecological significance of colour constancy since they spend much of their adult lives identifying and choosing between colour targets (flowers) under continuously changing ambient lighting conditions. In bees, whose colour vision is best studied among the insects, the compensation provided by colour constancy is only partial and its efficiency depends on the area of colour space. There is no evidence for complete 'discounting' of the illuminant in bees, and the spectral composition of the light can itself be used as adaptive information. In patchy illumination, bees adjust their spatial foraging to minimise transitions between variously illuminated zones. Modelling allows the quantification of the adaptive benefits of various colour constancy mechanisms in the economy of nature. We also discuss the neural mechanisms and cognitive operations that might underpin colour constancy in insects.

  18. Irradiating insect pests

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This is a non-technical article focusing on phytosanitary uses of irradiation. In a series of interview questions, I present information on the scope of the invasive species problem and the contribution of international trade in agricultural products to the movement of invasive insects. This is foll...

  19. Cotton insect pest management

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cotton production is challenged worldwide by a diversity of arthropod pests that require management to prevent or reduce crop damage. Advances in arthropod control technologies and improved insect and crop management systems have dramatically reduced levels of arthropod damage and the need for inse...

  20. Insects. Thematic Unit.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gosnell, Kathee

    This book is a captivating whole-language thematic unit about the study of insects, relating it to our understanding of the past and our hopes for using our knowledge in the present to balance the ecosystem in the future. It contains a wide variety of lesson ideas and reproducible pages designed for use with intermediate students. At its core,…

  1. People and Insects.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    NatureScope, 1985

    1985-01-01

    Provides: (1) background information on how insects affect human lives, both positively and negatively, and on integrated pest management strategies; (2) student activities; and (3) materials (ready-to-copy games, puzzles, coloring pages, worksheets, and/or mazes). Each activity includes an objective, recommended age level(s), subject area(s),…

  2. Investigation--Insects!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    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)

  3. Corn insect pests

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Historically, the major corn insect pests in South Dakota have been the larvae of corn rootworms (northern and western), European corn borer, and black cutworm. Bt-corn hybrids are effective against most of these pests. However, there are also minor or sporadic pests of corn in South Dakota includin...

  4. Radar cross section of insects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riley, J. R.

    1985-02-01

    X-band measurements of radar cross section as a function of the angle between insect body axis and the plane of polarization are presented. A finding of particular interest is that in larger insects, maximum cross section occurs when the E-vector is perpendicular to the body axis. A new range of measurements on small insects (aphids, and planthoppers) is also described, and a comprehensive summary of insect cross-section data at X-band is given.

  5. Terahertz Science & Technology: Sensing Bio-Molecular Nanostructures & Photoinduces Transitions Between Metastable States

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-07-31

    suggested range of molecular dynamics relaxation times for processes without bio-molecular conformational change varies from approximately 1.5 ps...for single bio-molecule characterization. To demonstrate the capabilities of the spectrometer, transmission spectra from bacterial cells and some of...shipped in a special buffer solution, containing salts ( MgCl2 and NaCl), some organic species, and some excess DNA strands . In order to keep the

  6. New single-copy nuclear genes for scale insect systematics

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Despite the advent of next-generation sequencing, the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and Sanger sequencing remain useful tools for molecular identification and systematics. To date, molecular systematics of scale insects has been constrained by the paucity of loci that researchers have been able to...

  7. Building a 'Repository of Science': The importance of integrating biobanks within molecular pathology programmes.

    PubMed

    Lewis, Claire; McQuaid, Stephen; Hamilton, Peter W; Salto-Tellez, Manuel; McArt, Darragh; James, Jacqueline A

    2016-11-01

    Repositories containing high quality human biospecimens linked with robust and relevant clinical and pathological information are required for the discovery and validation of biomarkers for disease diagnosis, progression and response to treatment. Current molecular based discovery projects using either low or high throughput technologies rely heavily on ready access to such sample collections. It is imperative that modern biobanks align with molecular diagnostic pathology practices not only to provide the type of samples needed for discovery projects but also to ensure requirements for ongoing sample collections and the future needs of researchers are adequately addressed. Biobanks within comprehensive molecular pathology programmes are perfectly positioned to offer more than just tumour derived biospecimens; for example, they have the ability to facilitate researchers gaining access to sample metadata such as digitised scans of tissue samples annotated prior to macrodissection for molecular diagnostics or pseudoanonymised clinical outcome data or research results retrieved from other users utilising the same or overlapping cohorts of samples. Furthermore, biobanks can work with molecular diagnostic laboratories to develop standardised methodologies for the acquisition and storage of samples required for new approaches to research such as 'liquid biopsies' which will ultimately feed into the test validations required in large prospective clinical studies in order to implement liquid biopsy approaches for routine clinical practice. We draw on our experience in Northern Ireland to discuss how this harmonised approach of biobanks working synergistically with molecular pathology programmes is a key for the future success of precision medicine.

  8. High resolution NEXAFS of perylene and PTCDI: a surface science approach to molecular orbital analysis.

    PubMed

    Fratesi, Guido; Lanzilotto, Valeria; Stranges, Stefano; Alagia, Michele; Brivio, Gian Paolo; Floreano, Luca

    2014-07-28

    We made use of synchrotron radiation to perform near edge X-ray absorption fine structure spectroscopy, NEXAFS, at the carbon K-edge of perylene and perylene-tetracarboxylic-diimide, PTCDI. Reference spectra measured for isolated molecules in the gas phase are compared with polarization dependent NEXAFS spectra measured on highly oriented thin films in order to study the symmetry of the molecular orbitals. The molecular overlayers are grown onto the rutile TiO2(110) surface for which the large anisotropic corrugation effectively drives the molecular orientation, while its dielectric nature prevents the rehybridization of the molecular orbitals. We employed density functional theory, DFT, calculations to disentangle the contribution of specific carbon atoms to the molecular density of states. Numerical simulations correctly predict the observed NEXAFS azimuthal dichroism of the σ* resonances above the ionization threshold, from which we determine the full geometric orientation of the overlayer molecules. A discrepancy observed for the spectral contribution of the imide carbon atom to the calculated unoccupied molecular orbitals has been explained in terms of initial state effects, as determined by Hartree-Fock corrections and in full agreement with the corresponding shift of the C 1s core level measured by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, XPS.

  9. Insect Repellents: Modulators of Mosquito Odorant Receptor Activity

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2010-08-01

    molecular pathways through allosteric regulation of various proteins including proteases [39,40], the cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1) [41], the a7 nicotinic...41. Price MR, Baillie GL, Thomas A, Stevenson LA, Easson M, et al. (2005) Allosteric modulation of the cannabinoid CB1 receptor . Mol Pharmacol 68...Insect Repellents: Modulators of Mosquito Odorant Receptor Activity Jonathan D. Bohbot, Joseph C. Dickens* Invasive Insect Biocontrol and Behavior

  10. Protecting Yourself from Stinging Insects

    MedlinePlus

    ... 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. Detection of insects in grain

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Detecting insects hidden inside kernels of grain is important to grain buyers because internal infestations can result in insect fragments in products made from the grain, or, if the grain is stored before use, the insect population can increase and damage the grain further. In a study in the Unite...

  12. Evaluating insect-microbiomes at the plant-insect interface.

    PubMed

    Casteel, Clare L; Hansen, Allison K

    2014-07-01

    Plants recognize biotic challengers and respond with the appropriate defense by utilizing phytohormone signaling and crosstalk. Despite this, microbes and insects have evolved mechanisms that compromise the plant surveillance system and specific defenses, thus ensuring successful colonization. In nature, plants do not experience insect herbivores and microbes in isolation, but in combination. Over time, relationships have developed between insects and microbes, varying on a continuum from no-relationship to obligate relationships that are required for both organisms to survive. While many reviews have examined plant-insect and plant-microbe interactions and the mechanisms of plant defense, few have considered the interface where microbes and insects may overlap, and synergies may develop. In this review, we critically evaluate the requirements for insect-associated microbes to develop synergistic relationships with their hosts, and we mechanistically discuss how some of these insect-associated microbes can target or modify host plant defenses. Finally, by using bioinformatics and the recent literature, we review evidence for synergies in insect-microbe relationships at the interface of plant-insect defenses. Insect-associated microbes can influence host-plant detection and/or signaling through phytohormone synthesis, conserved microbial patterns, and effectors, however, microbes associated with insects must be maintained in the environment and located in opportunistic positions.

  13. Elementary Science: Grade 2.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carroll County Public Schools, Westminster, MD.

    This grade 2 science curriculum guide contains three activity units: (1) insects; (2) measuring; and (3) sink or float. Each unit contains a rationale, teacher background material, lesson plans, and lists of resources including books, audiovisual materials, resource persons, and science activity modules. The lesson plans list the science processes…

  14. The impact of computer science in molecular medicine: enabling high-throughput research.

    PubMed

    de la Iglesia, Diana; García-Remesal, Miguel; de la Calle, Guillermo; Kulikowski, Casimir; Sanz, Ferran; Maojo, Víctor

    2013-01-01

    The Human Genome Project and the explosion of high-throughput data have transformed the areas of molecular and personalized medicine, which are producing a wide range of studies and experimental results and providing new insights for developing medical applications. Research in many interdisciplinary fields is resulting in data repositories and computational tools that support a wide diversity of tasks: genome sequencing, genome-wide association studies, analysis of genotype-phenotype interactions, drug toxicity and side effects assessment, prediction of protein interactions and diseases, development of computational models, biomarker discovery, and many others. The authors of the present paper have developed several inventories covering tools, initiatives and studies in different computational fields related to molecular medicine: medical informatics, bioinformatics, clinical informatics and nanoinformatics. With these inventories, created by mining the scientific literature, we have carried out several reviews of these fields, providing researchers with a useful framework to locate, discover, search and integrate resources. In this paper we present an analysis of the state-of-the-art as it relates to computational resources for molecular medicine, based on results compiled in our inventories, as well as results extracted from a systematic review of the literature and other scientific media. The present review is based on the impact of their related publications and the available data and software resources for molecular medicine. It aims to provide information that can be useful to support ongoing research and work to improve diagnostics and therapeutics based on molecular-level insights.

  15. Research briefing on selected opportunities in atomic, molecular, and optical sciences

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1991-12-31

    This report discusses research on the following topics: The Laser-Atom Revolution; Controlling Dynamical Pathways; Nonclassical States of Light; Transient States of Atomic Systems; New Light Generation and Handling; Clusters; Atomic Physics at User Facilities; and Impacts of AMO Sciences on Modern Technologies.

  16. Research briefing on selected opportunities in atomic, molecular, and optical sciences

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1991-01-01

    This report discusses research on the following topics: The Laser-Atom Revolution; Controlling Dynamical Pathways; Nonclassical States of Light; Transient States of Atomic Systems; New Light Generation and Handling; Clusters; Atomic Physics at User Facilities; and Impacts of AMO Sciences on Modern Technologies.

  17. Atomic and Molecular Structure in Chemical Education: A Critical Analysis from Various Perspectives of Science Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tsaparlis, Georgios

    1997-01-01

    Provides a critical analysis of the role that atomic theory plays in the science curriculum from elementary through secondary school. Examines structural concepts from the perspective of the theory of meaningful learning, information processing theory, and the alternative conceptions movement. Contains 54 references. (DDR)

  18. Active conformation of an insect neuropeptide family.

    PubMed Central

    Nachman, R J; Roberts, V A; Dyson, H J; Holman, G M; Tainer, J A

    1991-01-01

    To understand the structural and chemical basis for insect neuropeptide activity, we have designed, synthesized, and determined the conformation of a biologically active cyclic analog of the pyrokinins, an insect neuropeptide family that mediates myotropic (visceral muscle contractile) activity. Members of this insect neuropeptide family share the common C-terminal pentapeptide sequence Phe-Xaa-Pro-Arg-Leu-NH2 (Xaa = Ser, Thr, or Val). Circular dichroic, nuclear magnetic resonance, and molecular dynamics analyses of the conformationally restricted cyclic pyrokinin analog cyclo(-Asn-Thr-Ser-Phe-Thr-Pro-Arg-Leu-) indicated the presence of a beta-turn in the active core region encompassing residues Thr-Pro-Arg-Leu. The rigid cyclic analog retains biological activity, suggesting that its C-terminal beta-turn is the active pyrokinin conformation recognized by the myotropic receptor. As individual pyrokinins and pyrokinin-like neuropeptides demonstrate both oviduct-contractile and pheromone-biosynthesis activities in various insects, the biologically active beta-turn structure reported here holds broad significance for many biological processes. Images PMID:2034692

  19. Science Notes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    School Science Review, 1990

    1990-01-01

    Presented are 29 science activities for secondary school science instruction. Topic areas include botany, genetics, biochemistry, anatomy, entomology, molecular structure, spreadsheets, chemistry, mechanics, astronomy, relativity, aeronautics, instrumentation, electrostatics, quantum mechanics, and laboratory interfacing. (CW)

  20. RNAi: future in insect management.

    PubMed

    Burand, John P; Hunter, Wayne B

    2013-03-01

    RNA interference is a post- transcriptional, gene regulation mechanism found in virtually all plants and animals including insects. The demonstration of RNAi in insects and its successful use as a tool in the study of functional genomics opened the door to the development of a variety of novel, environmentally sound approaches for insect pest management. Here the current understanding of the biogenesis of the two RNAi classes in insects is reviewed. These are microRNAs (miRNAs) and short interfering RNAs (siRNAs). Several other key approaches in RNAi -based for insect control, as well as for the prevention of diseases in insects are also reviewed. The problems and prospects for the future use of RNAi in insects are presented.

  1. On quantifying insect movements

    SciTech Connect

    Wiens, J.A.; Crist, T.O. ); Milne, B.T. )

    1993-08-01

    We elaborate on methods described by Turchin, Odendaal Rausher for quantifying insect movement pathways. We note the need to scale measurement resolution to the study insects and the questions being asked, and we discuss the use of surveying instrumentation for recording sequential positions of individuals on pathways. We itemize several measures that may be used to characterize movement pathways and illustrate these by comparisons among several Eleodes beetles occurring in shortgrass steppe. The fractal dimension of pathways may provide insights not available from absolute measures of pathway configuration. Finally, we describe a renormalization procedure that may be used to remove sequential interdependence among locations of moving individuals while preserving the basic attributes of the pathway.

  2. [Insect venom allergies].

    PubMed

    Przybilla, Bernhard; Ruëff, Franziska

    2003-10-01

    Systemic IgE-mediated immediate type reactions (anaphylaxis) due to honeybee or vespid stings are potentially life-threatening; they are reported in up to 5% of the general population. Insect venom allergy is diagnosed by history, skin testing and measurement of insect venom-specific serum IgE; sometimes additional tests are needed. The diagnosis is based on the history of a systemic allergic immediate type sting reaction, without such a medical history any other "positive" test results are irrelevant. Nearly always, patients with systemic allergic sting reactions can be protected from further episodes of anaphylaxis by a carefully performed hyposensitization (specific immunotherapy). If therapeutic efficacy has been proven by tolerance of a re-sting, hyposensitization can be frequently stopped after 3 to 5 years. Patients with a particular risk of frequent re-stings or of very severe sting reactions may have to be treated for a longer time, some of them even life-long.

  3. Insect maintenance and transmission.

    PubMed

    Kingdom, Heather

    2013-01-01

    Phytoplasmas are plant pathogens of huge economic importance due to responsibility for crop yield losses worldwide. Institutions around the world are trying to understand and control this yield loss at a time when food security is high on government agendas. In order to fully understand the mechanisms of phytoplasma infection and spread, more insect vector and phytoplasma colonies will need to be established for research worldwide. Rearing and study of these colonies is essential in the research and development of phytoplasma control measures. This chapter highlights general materials and methods for raising insect vector colonies and maintenance of phytoplasmas. Specific methods of rearing the maize leafhopper and maize bushy stunt phytoplasma and the aster leafhopper and aster yellows phytoplasma strain witches' broom are also included.

  4. The earliest known holometabolous insects.

    PubMed

    Nel, André; Roques, Patrick; Nel, Patricia; Prokin, Alexander A; Bourgoin, Thierry; Prokop, Jakub; Szwedo, Jacek; Azar, Dany; Desutter-Grandcolas, Laure; Wappler, Torsten; Garrouste, Romain; Coty, David; Huang, Diying; Engel, Michael S; Kirejtshuk, Alexander G

    2013-11-14

    The Eumetabola (Endopterygota (also known as Holometabola) plus Paraneoptera) have the highest number of species of any clade, and greatly contribute to animal species biodiversity. The palaeoecological circumstances that favoured their emergence and success remain an intriguing question. Recent molecular phylogenetic analyses have suggested a wide range of dates for the initial appearance of the Holometabola, from the Middle Devonian epoch (391 million years (Myr) ago) to the Late Pennsylvanian epoch (311 Myr ago), and Hemiptera (310 Myr ago). Palaeoenvironments greatly changed over these periods, with global cooling and increasing complexity of green forests. The Pennsylvanian-period crown-eumetabolan fossil record remains notably incomplete, particularly as several fossils have been erroneously considered to be stem Holometabola (Supplementary Information); the earliest definitive beetles are from the start of the Permian period. The emergence of the hymenopterids, sister group to other Holometabola, is dated between 350 and 309 Myr ago, incongruent with their current earliest record (Middle Triassic epoch). Here we describe five fossils--a Gzhelian-age stem coleopterid, a holometabolous larva of uncertain ordinal affinity, a stem hymenopterid, and early Hemiptera and Psocodea, all from the Moscovian age--and reveal a notable penecontemporaneous breadth of early eumetabolan insects. These discoveries are more congruent with current hypotheses of clade divergence. Eumetabola experienced episodes of diversification during the Bashkirian-Moscovian and the Kasimovian-Gzhelian ages. This cladogenetic activity is perhaps related to notable episodes of drying resulting from glaciations, leading to the eventual demise in Euramerica of coal-swamp ecosystems, evidenced by floral turnover during this interval. These ancient species were of very small size, living in the shadow of Palaeozoic-era 'giant' insects. Although these discoveries reveal unexpected Pennsylvanian

  5. Viruses of commercialized insect pollinators.

    PubMed

    Gisder, Sebastian; Genersch, Elke

    2016-08-03

    Managed insect pollinators are indispensable in modern agriculture. They are used worldwide not only in the open field but also in greenhouses to enhance fruit set, seed production, and crop yield. Managed honey bee (Apis mellifera, Apis cerana) colonies provide the majority of commercial pollination although other members of the superfamily Apoidea are also exploited and commercialized as managed pollinators. In the recent past, it became more and more evident that viral diseases play a key role in devastating honey bee colony losses and it was also recognized that many viruses originally thought to be honey bee specific can also be detected in other pollinating insects. However, while research on viruses infecting honey bees started more than 50years ago and the knowledge on these viruses is growing ever since, little is known on virus diseases of other pollinating bee species. Recent virus surveys suggested that many of the viruses thought to be honey bee specific are actually circulating in the pollinator community and that pollinator management and commercialization of pollinators provide ample opportunity for viral diseases to spread. However, the direction of disease transmission is not always clear and the impact of these viral diseases on the different hosts remains elusive in many cases. With our review we want to provide an up-to-date overview on the viruses detected in different commercialized pollinators in order to encourage research in the field of pollinator virology that goes beyond molecular detection of viruses. A deeper understanding of this field of virology is urgently needed to be able to evaluate the impact of viruses on pollinator health and the role of different pollinators in spreading viral diseases and to be able to decide on appropriate measures to prevent virus-driven pollinator decline.

  6. Quantitative studies of Savannah River aquatic insects, 1959--1985

    SciTech Connect

    Soltis, R.; Hart, D.; Nagy, T.

    1986-10-30

    As part of a long-term study of water quality patterns, scientists from the Academy of Natural Sciences have collected aquatic insects from artificial substrates placed at several stations in Savannah River. This report presents the first detailed compilation and analysis of this substantial data base, and examines patterns of variations of insect distribution and abundance (both spatial and temporal) during the last quarter century. Data on the number of individuals of various taxa found in the insect traps were obtained from tables in the Academy's cursory reports. Computer data files created from these records were subjected to extensive statistical analyses in order to examine variation among stations, seasons and years in the abundances of major taxa and various aggregate properties of the insect assemblage. Although a total of 83 taxa were collected over the 27-year study, 10 taxa accounted for nearly 80% of the individuals collected from the traps, hence there 10 taxa were analyzed more intensively.

  7. Quantitative studies of Savannah River aquatic insects, 1959--1985

    SciTech Connect

    Soltis, R.; Hart, D.; Nagy, T.

    1986-10-30

    As part of a long-term study of water quality patterns, scientists from the Academy of Natural Sciences have collected aquatic insects from artificial substrates placed at several stations in Savannah River. This report presents the first detailed compilation and analysis of this substantial data base, and examines patterns of variations of insect distribution and abundance (both spatial and temporal) during the last quarter century. Data on the number of individuals of various taxa found in the insect traps were obtained from tables in the Academy`s cursory reports. Computer data files created from these records were subjected to extensive statistical analyses in order to examine variation among stations, seasons and years in the abundances of major taxa and various aggregate properties of the insect assemblage. Although a total of 83 taxa were collected over the 27-year study, 10 taxa accounted for nearly 80% of the individuals collected from the traps, hence there 10 taxa were analyzed more intensively.

  8. Thermoregulation in endothermic insects.

    PubMed

    Heinrich, B

    1974-08-30

    On the basis of body weight, most flying insects have higher rates of metabolism, and hence heat production, than other animals. However, rapid rates of cooling because of small body size in most cases precludes appreciable endothermy. The body temperature of small flies in flight is probably close to ambient temperature, and that of flying butterflies and locusts is 5 degrees to 10 degrees C above ambient temperature. Many moths and bumblebees are insulated with scales and hair, and their metabolism during flight can cause the temperature of the flight muscles to increase 20 degrees to 30 degrees C above ambient temperature. Curiously, those insects which (because of size, insulation) retain the most heat in the thorax during flight, also require the highest muscle temperature in order to maintain sufficient power output to continue flight. The minimum muscle temperature for flight varies widely between different species, while the maximum temperature varies over the relatively narrow range of 40 degrees to 45 degrees C. As a consequence, those insects that necessarily generate high muscle temperatures during flight must maintain their thoracic temperature within a relatively narrow range during flight. Active heat loss from the thorax to the abdomen prevents overheating of the flight motor and allows some large moths to be active over a wide range of ambient temperatures. Bumblebees similarly transfer heat from the flight musculature into the abdomen while incubating their brood by abdominal contact. Many of the larger insects would remain grounded if they did not actively increase the temperature of their flight muscles prior to flight. Male tettigoniid grasshoppers elevate their thoracic temperature prior to singing. In addition, some of the social Hymenoptera activate the "flight" muscles specifically to produce heat not only prior to flight but also during nest temperature regulation. During this "shivering" the "flight" muscles are often activated in

  9. Calculating the secrets of life: Applications of the mathematical sciences in molecular biology

    SciTech Connect

    Lander, E.S.; Waterman, M.S.

    1995-12-31

    Molecular biology has emerged from the synthesis of two complementary approaches to the study of life-biochemistry and genetics--to become one of the most exciting and vibrant scientific fields at the end of the twentieth century. This book covers the following topic areas: a brief history of the intellectual foundations of modem molecular biology; mapping heredity; seeing conserved signals: using algorithms to detect similarities between biosequences; hearing distant echoes: using extremal statistics to probe evolutionary origins; calibrating the clock: using stochastic processes to measure the rate of evolution; winding the double helix; using geometry, topology, and mechanics of DNA; unwinding the double helix: using differential mechanics to probe conformational changes in DNA; lifting the curtain: using topology to probe the hidden action of enzymes; folding the sheets: using computational methods to predict the structure of proteins.

  10. Diversity of insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits.

    PubMed

    Jones, Andrew K; Sattelle, David B

    2010-01-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are ligand-gated ion channels that mediate fast synaptic transmission in the insect nervous system and are targets of a major group of insecticides, the neonicotinoids. They consist of five subunits arranged around a central ion channeL Since the subunit composition determines the functional and pharmacological properties of the receptor the presence of nAChR families comprising several subunit-encodinggenes provides a molecular basis for broad functional diversity. Analyses of genome sequences have shown that nAChR gene families remain compact in diverse insect species, when compared to their nematode andvertebrate counterparts. Thus, the fruit fly (Drosophila melanogaster), malaria mosquito (Anopheles gambiae), honey bee (Apis mellifera), silk worm (Bombyx mon) and the red flour beetle (Tribolium castaneum) possess 10-12 nAChR genes while human and the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans have 16 and 29 respectively. Although insect nAChRgene families are amongst the smallest known, receptor diversity can be considerably increased by the posttranscriptional processes alternative splicing and mRNA A-to-I editingwhich can potentially generate protein products which far outnumber the nAChR genes. These two processes can also generate species-specific subunit isoforms. In addition, each insect possesses at least one highly divergent nAChR subunit which may perform species-specific functions. Species-specific subunit diversification may offer promising targets for future rational design of insecticides that target specific pest insects while sparing beneficial species.

  11. Edible insects are the future?

    PubMed

    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.

  12. RNAi Technology for Insect Management and Protection of Beneficial Insects from Diseases: Lessons, Challenges and Risk Assessments.

    PubMed

    Zotti, M J; Smagghe, G

    2015-06-01

    The time has passed for us to wonder whether RNA interference (RNAi) effectively controls pest insects or protects beneficial insects from diseases. The RNAi era in insect science began with studies of gene function and genetics that paved the way for the development of novel and highly specific approaches for the management of pest insects and, more recently, for the treatment and prevention of diseases in beneficial insects. The slight differences in components of RNAi pathways are sufficient to provide a high degree of variation in responsiveness among insects. The current framework to assess the negative effects of genetically modified (GM) plants on human health is adequate for RNAi-based GM plants. Because of the mode of action of RNAi and the lack of genomic data for most exposed non-target organisms, it becomes difficult to determine the environmental risks posed by RNAi-based technologies and the benefits provided for the protection of crops. A better understanding of the mechanisms that determine the variability in the sensitivity of insects would accelerate the worldwide release of commercial RNAi-based approaches.

  13. Managing social insects of urban importance.

    PubMed

    Rust, Michael K; Su, Nan-Yao

    2012-01-01

    Social insects have a tremendous economic and social impact on urban communities. The rapid urbanization of the world has dramatically increased the incidence of urban pests. Human commerce has resulted in the spread of urban invasive species worldwide such that various species are now common to many major urban centers. We aim to highlight those social behaviors that can be exploited to control these pests with the minimal use of pesticides. Their cryptic behavior often prohibits the direct treatment of colonies. However, foraging and recruitment are essential aspects of their social behavior and expose workers to traps, baits, and pesticide applications. The advent of new chemistries has revolutionized the pest management strategies used to control them. In recent years, there has been an increased environmental awareness, especially in the urban community. Advances in molecular and microbial agents promise additional tools in developing integrated pest management programs against social insects.

  14. The evolution of insect germline specification strategies

    PubMed Central

    Quan, Honghu; Lynch, Jeremy A.

    2016-01-01

    The establishment of the germline is essential for sexually reproducing organisms. In animals, there are two major strategies to specify the germline: maternal provision and zygotic induction. The molecular basis of the maternal provision mode has been well characterized in several model organisms (fly, frog, fish, and nematode), while that of the zygotic induction mode has mainly been studied in mammalian models such as the mouse. Shifts in germline determination modes occur unexpectedly frequently and many such shifts have occurred several times among insects. Given their general tractability and rapidly increasing genomic and genetic tools applicable to many species, the insects present a uniquely powerful model system for understanding major transitions in reproductive strategies, and developmental processes in general. PMID:27088076

  15. The laboratory technology of discrete molecular separation: the historical development of gel electrophoresis and the material epistemology of biomolecular science, 1945-1970.

    PubMed

    Chiang, Howard Hsueh-hao

    2009-01-01

    Preparative and analytical methods developed by separation scientists have played an important role in the history of molecular biology. One such early method is gel electrophoresis, a technique that uses various types of gel as its supporting medium to separate charged molecules based on size and other properties. Historians of science, however, have only recently begun to pay closer attention to this material epistemological dimension of biomolecular science. This paper substantiates the historiographical thread that explores the relationship between modern laboratory practice and the production of scientific knowledge. It traces the historical development of gel electrophoresis from the mid-1940s to the mid-1960s, with careful attention to the interplay between technical developments and disciplinary shifts, especially the rise of molecular biology in this time-frame. Claiming that the early 1950s marked a decisive shift in the evolution of electrophoretic methods from moving boundary to zone electrophoresis, I reconstruct various trajectories in which scientists such as Oliver Smithies sought out the most desirable solid supporting medium for electrophoretic instrumentation. Biomolecular knowledge, I argue, emerged in part from this process of seeking the most appropriate supporting medium that allowed for discrete molecular separation and visualization. The early 1950s, therefore, marked not only an important turning point in the history of separation science, but also a transformative moment in the history of the life sciences as the growth of molecular biology depended in part on the epistemological access to the molecular realm available through these evolving technologies.

  16. Plasticity in Insect Olfaction: To Smell or Not to Smell?

    PubMed

    Gadenne, Christophe; Barrozo, Romina B; Anton, Sylvia

    2016-01-01

    In insects, olfaction plays a crucial role in many behavioral contexts, such as locating food, sexual partners, and oviposition sites. To successfully perform such behaviors, insects must respond to chemical stimuli at the right moment. Insects modulate their olfactory system according to their physiological state upon interaction with their environment. Here, we review the plasticity of behavioral responses to different odor types according to age, feeding state, circadian rhythm, and mating status. We also summarize what is known about the underlying neural and endocrinological mechanisms, from peripheral detection to central nervous integration, and cover neuromodulation from the molecular to the behavioral level. We describe forms of olfactory plasticity that have contributed to the evolutionary success of insects and have provided them with remarkable tools to adapt to their ever-changing environment.

  17. Symbiotic microorganisms: untapped resources for insect pest control.

    PubMed

    Douglas, Angela E

    2007-08-01

    Symbiotic microorganisms offer one route to meet the anticipated heightened demand for novel insect pest management strategies created by growing human populations and global climate change. Two approaches have particular potential: the disruption of microbial symbionts required by insect pests, and manipulation of microorganisms with major impacts on insect traits contributing to their pest status (e.g. capacity to vector diseases, natural enemy resistance). Specific research priorities addressed in this article include identification of molecular targets against which highly specific antagonists can be designed or discovered, and management strategies to manipulate the incidence and properties of facultative microorganisms that influence insect pest traits. Collaboration with practitioners in pest management will ensure that the research agenda is married to agricultural and public health needs.

  18. Science review: mechanisms of impaired adrenal function in sepsis and molecular actions of glucocorticoids.

    PubMed

    Prigent, Hélène; Maxime, Virginie; Annane, Djillali

    2004-08-01

    This review describes current knowledge on the mechanisms that underlie glucocorticoid insufficiency in sepsis and the molecular action of glucocorticoids. In patients with severe sepsis, numerous factors predispose to glucocorticoid insufficiency, including drugs, coagulation disorders and inflammatory mediators. These factors may compromise the hypothalamic-pituitary axis (i.e. secondary adrenal insufficiency) or the adrenal glands (i.e. primary adrenal failure), or may impair glucocorticoid access to target cells (i.e. peripheral tissue resistance). Irreversible anatomical damages to the hypothalamus, pituitary, or adrenal glands rarely occur. Conversely, transient functional impairment in hormone synthesis may be a common complication of severe sepsis. Glucocorticoids interact with a specific cytosolic glucocorticoid receptor, which undergoes conformational changes, sheds heat shock proteins and translocates to the nucleus. Glucocorticoids may also interact with membrane binding sites at the surface of the cells. The molecular action of glucocorticoids results in genomic and nongenomic effects. Direct and indirect transcriptional and post-transcriptional effects related to the cytosolic glucocorticoid receptor account for the genomic effects. Nongenomic effects are probably subsequent to cytosolic interaction between the glucocorticoid receptor and proteins, or to interaction between glucocorticoids and specific membrane binding sites.

  19. A molecular-modeling toolbox aimed at bridging the gap between medicinal chemistry and computational sciences.

    PubMed

    Eid, Sameh; Zalewski, Adam; Smieško, Martin; Ernst, Beat; Vedani, Angelo

    2013-01-04

    In the current era of high-throughput drug discovery and development, molecular modeling has become an indispensable tool for identifying, optimizing and prioritizing small-molecule drug candidates. The required background in computational chemistry and the knowledge of how to handle the complex underlying protocols, however, might keep medicinal chemists from routinely using in silico technologies. Our objective is to encourage those researchers to exploit existing modeling technologies more frequently through easy-to-use graphical user interfaces. In this account, we present two innovative tools (which we are prepared to share with academic institutions) facilitating computational tasks commonly utilized in drug discovery and development: (1) the VirtualDesignLab estimates the binding affinity of small molecules by simulating and quantifying their binding to the three-dimensional structure of a target protein; and (2) the MD Client launches molecular dynamics simulations aimed at exploring the time-dependent stability of ligand-protein complexes and provides residue-based interaction energies. This allows medicinal chemists to identify sites of potential improvement in their candidate molecule. As a case study, we present the application of our tools towards the design of novel antagonists for the FimH adhesin.

  20. The environmental and molecular sciences laboratory project: Continuous evolution in leadership

    SciTech Connect

    Knutson, D.E.; McClusky, J.K.

    1995-09-01

    The United States is embarking on an environmental cleanup effort that dwarfs previous scientific enterprise. Using current best available technology, the projected costs of cleaning up the tens of abounds of toxic waste sites, including DOE sites, is estimated to exceed one trillion dollars. That level of expenditure contains no guarantee that the sites can be restored to their original condition, and no consensus on ``how clean is clean enough.`` ``Ultimately, the scientific challenge is to determine as accurately as possible each term in the path that links the source of the contaminant with the particular biological end points or health effects and to understand the mechanisms that connect them. However, the present state of scientific knowledge regarding the effects of exogenous chemicals on human biology is very limited. Understanding the connections at the molecular level is, at best, a blurred picture and often a black box.`` Long term environmental research at the molecular level is needed to resolve the concerns, and form the building blocks for a structure of cost effective process improvement and regulatory reform.

  1. Aircraft anti-insect system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Spiro, Clifford Lawrence (Inventor); Fric, Thomas Frank (Inventor); Leon, Ross Michael (Inventor)

    1997-01-01

    Insect debris is removed from or prevented from adhering to insect impingement areas of an aircraft, particularly on an inlet cowl of an engine, by heating the area to 180.degree.-500.degree. C. An apparatus comprising a means to bring hot air from the aircraft engine to a plenum contiguous to the insect impingement area provides for the heating of the insect impingement areas to the required temperatures. The plenum can include at least one tube with a plurality of holes contained in a cavity within the inlet cowl. It can also include an envelope with a plurality of holes on its surface contained in a cavity within the inlet cowl.

  2. Insects in a changing environment

    SciTech Connect

    Harrington, R.; Stork, N.

    1995-12-31

    This book, from a 1993 symposium, focuses on current, anthropogenic changes in insect populations using five major sections: introduction; changes in climate; changes in gas/pollutant levels; changes in land use; and a section of shorter papers. The effects of climate change on insects are assessed using techniques ranging from fossil evidence to simulation models to remote sensing. The section on changes in gas levels addresses a series of individually studies of insect responses to atmospheric gases and other pollutants. The section focusing on the effects of environmental change on insects is well documented.

  3. The Center for Environmental Kinetics Analysis: an NSF- and DOE-funded Environmental Molecular Science Institute (EMSI) at Penn State

    SciTech Connect

    S. L. Brantley; William D. Burgos; Brian A. Dempsey; Peter J. Heaney; James D. Kubicki; Peter C. Lichtner; Bruce E. Logan; Carmen E. Martinez; Karl T. Mueller; Kwadwo A. Osseo-Asare; Ming Tien; Carl I. Steefel, Glenn A. Waychunas; and John M. Zachara

    2007-04-19

    Physicochemical and microbiological processes taking place at environmental interfaces influence natural processes as well as the transport and fate of environmental contaminants, the remediation of toxic chemicals, and the sequestration of anthropogenic CO2. A team of scientists and engineers has been assembled to develop and apply new experimental and computational techniques to expand our knowledge of environmental kinetics. We are also training a cohort of talented and diverse students to work on these complex problems at multiple length scales and to compile and synthesize the kinetic data. Development of the human resources capable of translating molecular-scale information into parameters that are applicable in real world, field-scale problems of environmental kinetics is a major and relatively unique objective of the Institute's efforts. The EMSI team is a partnership among 10 faculty at The Pennsylvania State University (funded by the National Science Foundation Divisions of Chemistry and Earth Sciences), one faculty member at Juniata College, one faculty member at the University of Florida, and four researchers drawn from Los Alamos National Laboratory, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (funded by the Department of Energy Division of Environmental Remediation Sciences). Interactions among the applied and academic scientists drives research approaches aimed toward solving important problems of national interest. The Institute is organized into three interest groups (IGs) focusing on the processes of dissolution (DIG), precipitation (PIG), and microbial reactions at surfaces (BIG). Some of the research activity from each IG is highlighted to the right. The IGs interact with each other as each interest group studies reactions across the molecular, microscopic, mesoscopic and, in most cases, field scales. For example, abiotic dissolution and precipitation reactions of Fe oxides as studied in the Dissolution IG

  4. Mitochondrial disease: clinical aspects, molecular mechanisms, translational science, and clinical frontiers.

    PubMed

    Thornton, Ben; Cohen, Bruce; Copeland, William; Maria, Bernard L

    2014-09-01

    Mitochondrial medicine provides a metabolic perspective on the pathology of conditions linked with inadequate oxidative phosphorylation. Dysfunction in the mitochondrial machinery can result in improper energy production, leading to cellular injury or even apoptosis. Clinical presentations are often subtle, so clinicians must have a high index of suspicion to make early diagnoses. Symptoms could include muscle weakness and pain, seizures, loss of motor control, decreased visual and auditory functions, metabolic acidosis, acute developmental regression, and immune system dysfunction. The 2013 Neurobiology of Disease in Children Symposium, held in conjunction with the 42nd Annual Meeting of the Child Neurology Society, aimed to (1) describe accepted clinical phenotypes of mitochondrial disease produced from various mitochondrial mutations, (2) discuss contemporary understanding of molecular mechanisms that contribute to disease pathology, (3) highlight the systemic effects produced by dysfunction within the mitochondrial machinery, and (4) introduce current strategies that are being translated from bench to bedside as potential therapeutics.

  5. Designing and Developing Online Materials for Molecular Biology: Building Online Programs for Science

    PubMed Central

    Boulay, Rachel

    2013-01-01

    A well-accepted form of educational training offered in molecular biology is internships in research laboratories. However, the number of available research laboratories severely limits access by most students. Addressing this need, the University of Hawaii launched a project to expand this model to include newly developed online training materials in addition to a hands-on laboratory experience. This paper explores the design and development process of the online learning materials. This case study looks at the roles of the instructional designer, multimedia specialist, and research faculty who were the subject matter experts. The experiences of the design teams are shared in an effort to gain insight on how the collaborative efforts of the project group led to a successful deployment of the online learning materials. PMID:24319699

  6. Batten Disease: Clinical Aspects, Molecular Mechanisms, Translational Science, and Future Directions

    PubMed Central

    Dolisca, Sarah-Bianca; Mehta, Mitali; Pearce, David A.; Mink, Jonathan W.; Maria, Bernard L.

    2014-01-01

    The neuronal ceroid lipofuscinoses, collectively the most common neurodegenerative disorders of childhood, are primarily caused by an autosomal recessive genetic mutation leading to a lysosomal storage disease. Clinically these diseases manifest at varying ages of onset, and associated symptoms include cognitive decline, movement disorders, seizures, and retinopathy. The underlying cell biology and biochemistry that cause the clinical phenotypes of neuronal ceroid lipofuscinoses are still being elaborated. The 2012 Neurobiology of Disease in Children Symposium, held in conjunction with the 41st Annual Meeting of the Child Neurology Society, aimed to (1) provide a survey of the currently accepted forms of neuronal ceroid lipofuscinoses and their associated genetic mutations and clinical phenotypes; (2) highlight the specific pathology of Batten disease; (3) discuss the contemporary understanding of the molecular mechanisms that lead to pathology; and (4) introduce strategies that are being translated from bench to bedside as potential therapeutics. PMID:23838031

  7. Designing and Developing Online Materials for Molecular Biology: Building Online Programs for Science.

    PubMed

    Boulay, Rachel

    2013-01-01

    A well-accepted form of educational training offered in molecular biology is internships in research laboratories. However, the number of available research laboratories severely limits access by most students. Addressing this need, the University of Hawaii launched a project to expand this model to include newly developed online training materials in addition to a hands-on laboratory experience. This paper explores the design and development process of the online learning materials. This case study looks at the roles of the instructional designer, multimedia specialist, and research faculty who were the subject matter experts. The experiences of the design teams are shared in an effort to gain insight on how the collaborative efforts of the project group led to a successful deployment of the online learning materials.

  8. Mitochondrial Disease: Clinical Aspects, Molecular Mechanisms, Translational Science, and Clinical Frontiers

    PubMed Central

    Thornton, Ben; Cohen, Bruce; Copeland, William; Maria, Bernard L.

    2015-01-01

    Mitochondrial medicine provides a metabolic perspective on the pathology of conditions linked with inadequate oxidative phosphorylation. Dysfunction in the mitochondrial machinery can result in improper energy production, leading to cellular injury or even apoptosis. Clinical presentations are often subtle, so clinicians must have a high index of suspicion to make early diagnoses. Symptoms could include muscle weakness and pain, seizures, loss of motor control, decreased visual and auditory functions, metabolic acidosis, acute developmental regression, and immune system dysfunction. The 2013 Neurobiology of Disease in Children Symposium, held in conjunction with the 42nd Annual Meeting of the Child Neurology Society, aimed to (1) describe accepted clinical phenotypes of mitochondrial disease produced from various mitochondrial mutations, (2) discuss contemporary understanding of molecular mechanisms that contribute to disease pathology, (3) highlight the systemic effects produced by dysfunction within the mitochondrial machinery, and (4) introduce current strategies that are being translated from bench to bedside as potential therapeutics. PMID:24916430

  9. Molecular imaging in the College of Optical Sciences: an overview of two decades of instrumentation development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Furenlid, Lars R.; Barrett, Harrison H.; Barber, H. Bradford; Clarkson, Eric W.; Kupinski, Matthew A.; Liu, Zhonglin; Stevenson, Gail D.; Woolfenden, James M.

    2014-10-01

    During the past two decades, researchers at the University of Arizona's Center for Gamma-Ray Imaging (CGRI) have explored a variety of approaches to gamma-ray detection, including scintillation cameras, solid-state detectors, and hybrids such as the intensified Quantum Imaging Device (iQID) configuration where a scintillator is followed by optical gain and a fast CCD or CMOS camera. We have combined these detectors with a variety of collimation schemes, including single and multiple pinholes, parallel-hole collimators, synthetic apertures, and anamorphic crossed slits, to build a large number of preclinical molecular-imaging systems that perform Single-Photon Emission Computed Tomography (SPECT), Positron Emission Tomography (PET), and X-Ray Computed Tomography (CT). In this paper, we discuss the themes and methods we have developed over the years to record and fully use the information content carried by every detected gamma-ray photon.

  10. 7 CFR 51.2290 - Insect injury.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Insect injury. 51.2290 Section 51.2290 Agriculture... Standards for Shelled English Walnuts (Juglans Regia) Definitions § 51.2290 Insect injury. Insect injury means that the insect, web, frass or other evidence of insects is present on the portion of kernel....

  11. 7 CFR 51.2122 - Insect injury.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Insect injury. 51.2122 Section 51.2122 Agriculture... Standards for Grades of Shelled Almonds Definitions § 51.2122 Insect injury. Insect injury means that the insect, web, or frass is present or there is definite evidence of insect feeding....

  12. 7 CFR 51.2122 - Insect injury.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Insect injury. 51.2122 Section 51.2122 Agriculture... Standards for Grades of Shelled Almonds Definitions § 51.2122 Insect injury. Insect injury means that the insect, web, or frass is present or there is definite evidence of insect feeding....

  13. 7 CFR 51.2290 - Insect injury.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Insect injury. 51.2290 Section 51.2290 Agriculture... Standards for Shelled English Walnuts (Juglans Regia) Definitions § 51.2290 Insect injury. Insect injury means that the insect, web, frass or other evidence of insects is present on the portion of kernel....

  14. 1977 Kansas Field Crop Insect Control Recommendations.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brooks, Leroy; Gates, Dell E.

    This publication is prepared to aid producers in selecting methods of insect population management that have proved effective under Kansas conditions. Topics covered include insect control on alfalfa, soil insects attacking corn, insects attacking above-ground parts of corn, and sorghum, wheat, and soybean insect control. The insecticides…

  15. 7 CFR 51.2122 - Insect injury.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Insect injury. 51.2122 Section 51.2122 Agriculture... Standards for Grades of Shelled Almonds Definitions § 51.2122 Insect injury. Insect injury means that the insect, web, or frass is present or there is definite evidence of insect feeding....

  16. 7 CFR 51.2008 - Insect injury.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Insect injury. 51.2008 Section 51.2008 Agriculture....2008 Insect injury. Insect injury means that the insect, frass or web is present inside the nut or the kernel shows definite evidence of insect feeding. Metric Conversion Table...

  17. 7 CFR 51.2290 - Insect injury.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Insect injury. 51.2290 Section 51.2290 Agriculture... Standards for Shelled English Walnuts (Juglans Regia) Definitions § 51.2290 Insect injury. Insect injury means that the insect, web, frass or other evidence of insects is present on the portion of kernel....

  18. 7 CFR 51.2008 - Insect injury.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Insect injury. 51.2008 Section 51.2008 Agriculture....2008 Insect injury. Insect injury means that the insect, frass or web is present inside the nut or the kernel shows definite evidence of insect feeding. Metric Conversion Table...

  19. Hydrodynamics of insect spermatozoa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  20. Using Aquatic Insects as Indicators of Water Quality

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dyche, Steven E.

    1977-01-01

    Described is a science field activity that studies the presence of certain aquatic insects, like stoneflies, as indicators of water quality. Equipment, materials, and methods are listed in detail, including suggestions for building certain supplies. Results of previous studies on the Yellowstone River are included. (MA)

  1. Young Scientists Explore Insects. Book 2 Primary Level.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Penn, Linda

    Designed to present interesting facts about science and to heighten the curiosity of primary age students, this book contains suggestions for students to investigate the natural world and numerous black and white illustrations. The activities focus on nine easily recognized insects: bees, beetles, lady bugs, lightning bugs, ants, mosquitoes,…

  2. Environmental RNAi in herbivorous insects.

    PubMed

    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.

  3. Environmental RNAi in herbivorous insects

    PubMed Central

    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.

    2015-01-01

    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. PMID:25802407

  4. Design and Evaluation of a Digital Module with Guided Peer Feedback for Student Learning Biotechnology and Molecular Life Sciences, Attitudinal Change, and Satisfaction

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Noroozi, Omid; Mulder, Martin

    2017-01-01

    This study aims to investigate the impacts of a digital learning module with guided peer feedback on students' domain-specific knowledge gain and their attitudinal change in the field of biotechnology and molecular life sciences. The extent to which the use of this module is appreciated by students is studied as well. A pre-test, post-test design…

  5. A Rational Reconstruction of the Kinetic Molecular Theory of Gases Based on History and Philosophy of Science and Its Implications for Chemistry Textbooks.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Niaz, Mansoor

    2000-01-01

    Describes a study that was designed to develop a framework for examining the way in which chemistry textbooks describe the kinetic theory and related issues. The framework was developed by a rational reconstruction of the kinetic molecular theory of gases based on historians and philosophers of science. (Contains 102 references.)(Author/LRW)

  6. Social Insects: A Model System for Network Dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Charbonneau, Daniel; Blonder, Benjamin; Dornhaus, Anna

    Social insect colonies (ants, bees, wasps, and termites) show sophisticated collective problem-solving in the face of variable constraints. Individuals exchange information and materials such as food. The resulting network structure and dynamics can inform us about the mechanisms by which the insects achieve particular collective behaviors and these can be transposed to man-made and social networks. We discuss how network analysis can answer important questions about social insects, such as how effective task allocation or information flow is realized. We put forward the idea that network analysis methods are under-utilized in social insect research, and that they can provide novel ways to view the complexity of collective behavior, particularly if network dynamics are taken into account. To illustrate this, we present an example of network tasks performed by ant workers, linked by instances of workers switching from one task to another. We show how temporal network analysis can propose and test new hypotheses on mechanisms of task allocation, and how adding temporal elements to static networks can drastically change results. We discuss the benefits of using social insects as models for complex systems in general. There are multiple opportunities emergent technologies and analysis methods in facilitating research on social insect network. The potential for interdisciplinary work could significantly advance diverse fields such as behavioral ecology, computer sciences, and engineering.

  7. The ubiquity and ancestry of insect doublesex.

    PubMed

    Price, Dana C; Egizi, Andrea; Fonseca, Dina M

    2015-08-17

    The doublesex (dsx) gene functions as a molecular switch at the base of the insect sex determination cascade, and triggers male or female somatic sexual differentiation in Drosophila. Having been reported from only seven current insect orders, the exact phylogenetic distribution of dsx within the largest Arthropod sub-phylum, the Hexapoda, is unknown. To understand the evolution of this integral gene relative to other arthropods, we tested for the presence of dsx within public EST and genome sequencing projects representative of all 32 hexapod orders. We find the dsx gene to be ubiquitous, with putative orthologs recovered from 30 orders. Additionally, we recovered both alternatively spliced and putative paralogous dsx transcripts from several orders of hexapods, including basal lineages, indicating the likely presence of these characteristics in the hexapod common ancestor. Of note, other arthropods such as chelicerates and crustaceans express two dsx genes, both of which are shown to lack alternative splicing. Furthermore, we discovered a large degree of length heterogeneity in the common region of dsx coding sequences within and among orders, possibly resulting from lineage-specific selective pressures inherent to each taxon. Our work serves as a valuable resource for understanding the evolution of sex determination in insects.

  8. Polarization Imaging and Insect Vision

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Green, Adam S.; Ohmann, Paul R.; Leininger, Nick E.; Kavanaugh, James A.

    2010-01-01

    For several years we have included discussions about insect vision in the optics units of our introductory physics courses. This topic is a natural extension of demonstrations involving Brewster's reflection and Rayleigh scattering of polarized light because many insects heavily rely on optical polarization for navigation and communication.…

  9. Identifying Insect Bites and Stings

    MedlinePlus

    ... or Animals > Identifying Insect Bites and Stings Health Issues Listen Español Text Size Email Print Share Identifying Insect Bites and Stings Page Content Article Body Mosquitoes Mosquitoes are generally found near water (pools, lakes, birdbaths) and are attracted by bright ...

  10. Reader Survey for INSECT ALERTS.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Miller, Mason E.; Sauer, Richard J.

    To determine what might be done to improve "Insect Alerts," which is a newsletter that carries "information on insect biology, abundance, activity and interpretation of control need," put out through the Michigan Cooperative Extension Service 26 weeks a year, a survey was conducted. A mail questionnaire was sent to all 120 county extension…

  11. RNAI: Future in insect management

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    RNA interference is a post-transcriptional, gene regulation mechanism found in virtually all plants and animals including insects. The demonstration of RNAi in insects and its successful use as a tool in the study of functional genomics opened the door to the development of a variety of novel, envir...

  12. A Template for Insect Cryopreservation

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This article is intended to update the reader on the progress made on insect embryo cryopreservation in the past 20 years and gives information for developing a protocol for cryopreserving insects by using a 2001 study as a template. The study used for the template is the cryopreservation of the Old...

  13. Eicosanoids mediate insect hemocyte migration

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Hemocyte chemotaxis toward infection and wound sites is an essential component of insect defense reactions, although the biochemical signal mechanisms responsible for mediating chemotaxis in insect cells are not well understood. Here we report on the outcomes of experiments designed to test the hyp...

  14. My Research History on the Chemical Standpoint-From Molecular Structure to Surface Science.

    PubMed

    Murata, Yoshitada

    2015-06-01

    The structure of molecules using gas electron diffraction (GED) was my graduate study. However, I was making a new apparatus for precise measurements by GED and formulated a scheme for the least-squares analysis for a smooth continuous curve of scattering intensity. My research was completely shifted to the solid surface after moving to Gakushuin University, where I briefly studied the liquid structure of CCl4 molecules, and I then moved to the Institute for Solid State Physics, the University of Tokyo. My studies of surface science were focused on the electronic properties and related phenomena, and various experimental methods were developed. The plasmon dispersions elucidated the initial oxidation of aluminum and one-dimensional metal on Si(001)2 × 1-K. Irreversible phase transition was discovered on MgO(001) using the LEED Kikuchi pattern. The electronic structure of the dislocation was observed on MgO(001) by the electron time-of-flight method. The phase transition on Si(001) and the rotational epitaxy in a K monoatomic layer on Cu(001) were found. Next, I changed to studies of the dynamical phenomena on the surface, where very low energy reactive ion scattering on metal surfaces and laser-induced desorption caused by electronic transition of NO and CO molecules from metal surfaces were observed, and the hydrogen atom location at the surface and interface was measured with a high depth resolution using a resonance nuclear reaction of (1) H + (15) N(2+) at 6.385 MeV. Finally, I moved to the University of Electro-Communications and studied thin single-crystal oxide layers on transition metals, in which the band-gap narrowing was found, and then a Pt monoatomic layer was prepared on the α-Al(2)O(3) film.

  15. Molecular Environmental Science Using Synchrotron Radiation: Chemistry and Physics of Waste Form Materials

    SciTech Connect

    Lindle, Dennis W.

    2011-04-21

    Production of defense-related nuclear materials has generated large volumes of complex chemical wastes containing a mixture of radionuclides. The disposition of these wastes requires conversion of the liquid and solid-phase components into durable, solid forms suitable for long-term immobilization. Specially formulated glass compositions and ceramics such as pyrochlores and apatites are the main candidates for these wastes. An important consideration linked to the durability of waste-form materials is the local structure around the waste components. Equally important is the local structure of constituents of the glass and ceramic host matrix. Knowledge of the structure in the waste-form host matrices is essential, prior to and subsequent to waste incorporation, to evaluate and develop improved waste-form compositions based on scientific considerations. This project used the soft-x-ray synchrotron-radiation-based technique of near-edge x-ray-absorption fine structure (NEXAFS) as a unique method for investigating oxidation states and structures of low-Z elemental constituents forming the backbones of glass and ceramic host matrices for waste-form materials. In addition, light metal ions in ceramic hosts, such as titanium, are also ideal for investigation by NEXAFS in the soft-x-ray region. Thus, one of the main objectives was to understand outstanding issues in waste-form science via NEXAFS investigations and to translate this understanding into better waste-form materials, followed by eventual capability to investigate “real” waste-form materials by the same methodology. We conducted several detailed structural investigations of both pyrochlore ceramic and borosilicate-glass materials during the project and developed improved capabilities at Beamline 6.3.1 of the Advanced Light Source (ALS) to perform the studies.

  16. Population fluctuation in phytophagous insects

    SciTech Connect

    Redfearn, A.; Pimm, S.L. )

    1994-06-01

    We examined how community interactions affect year-to-year population variability in three groups of phytophagous insects: British aphids and moths, and Canadian moths. We first examined how the number of host plant species on which a given phytophagous insect species feeds affects its population variability. Specialist insect species showed a weak tendency to be more variable than generalist species. We then examined how the number of species of parasitoids from which a given phytophagous insects species suffers affects its population variability. Species that are host to few parasitoid species showed a weak tendency to be more variable than species with many parsitoid species. These relationships also depend on other aspects of the life histories of the phytophagous insect species.

  17. Differential scanning calorimetry in life science: thermodynamics, stability, molecular recognition and application in drug design.

    PubMed

    Bruylants, G; Wouters, J; Michaux, C

    2005-01-01

    All biological phenomena depend on molecular recognition, which is either intermolecular like in ligand binding to a macromolecule or intramolecular like in protein folding. As a result, understanding the relationship between the structure of proteins and the energetics of their stability and binding with others (bio)molecules is a very interesting point in biochemistry and biotechnology. It is essential to the engineering of stable proteins and to the structure-based design of pharmaceutical ligands. The parameter generally used to characterize the stability of a system (the folded and unfolded state of the protein for example) is the equilibrium constant (K) or the free energy (deltaG(o)), which is the sum of enthalpic (deltaH(o)) and entropic (deltaS(o)) terms. These parameters are temperature dependent through the heat capacity change (deltaCp). The thermodynamic parameters deltaH(o) and deltaCp can be derived from spectroscopic experiments, using the van't Hoff method, or measured directly using calorimetry. Along with isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC), differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) is a powerful method, less described than ITC, for measuring directly the thermodynamic parameters which characterize biomolecules. In this article, we summarize the principal thermodynamics parameters, describe the DSC approach and review some systems to which it has been applied. DSC is much used for the study of the stability and the folding of biomolecules, but it can also be applied in order to understand biomolecular interactions and can thus be an interesting technique in the process of drug design.

  18. Eusocial insects as superorganisms

    PubMed Central

    Hou, Chen; Kaspari, Michael

    2010-01-01

    We recently published a paper titled “Energetic Basis of Colonial Living in Social Insects” showing that basic features of whole colony physiology and life history follow virtually the same size-dependencies as unitary organisms when a colony’s mass is the summed mass of individuals. We now suggest that these results are evidence, not only for the superorganism hypothesis, but also for colony level selection. In addition, we further examine the implications of these results for the metabolism and lifetime reproductive success of eusocial insect colonies. We conclude by discussing the mechanisms which may underlie the observed mass-dependence of survival, growth and reproduction in these colonies. PMID:20798827

  19. The aerodynamics of insect flight.

    PubMed

    Sane, Sanjay P

    2003-12-01

    The flight of insects has fascinated physicists and biologists for more than a century. Yet, until recently, researchers were unable to rigorously quantify the complex wing motions of flapping insects or measure the forces and flows around their wings. However, recent developments in high-speed videography and tools for computational and mechanical modeling have allowed researchers to make rapid progress in advancing our understanding of insect flight. These mechanical and computational fluid dynamic models, combined with modern flow visualization techniques, have revealed that the fluid dynamic phenomena underlying flapping flight are different from those of non-flapping, 2-D wings on which most previous models were based. In particular, even at high angles of attack, a prominent leading edge vortex remains stably attached on the insect wing and does not shed into an unsteady wake, as would be expected from non-flapping 2-D wings. Its presence greatly enhances the forces generated by the wing, thus enabling insects to hover or maneuver. In addition, flight forces are further enhanced by other mechanisms acting during changes in angle of attack, especially at stroke reversal, the mutual interaction of the two wings at dorsal stroke reversal or wing-wake interactions following stroke reversal. This progress has enabled the development of simple analytical and empirical models that allow us to calculate the instantaneous forces on flapping insect wings more accurately than was previously possible. It also promises to foster new and exciting multi-disciplinary collaborations between physicists who seek to explain the phenomenology, biologists who seek to understand its relevance to insect physiology and evolution, and engineers who are inspired to build micro-robotic insects using these principles. This review covers the basic physical principles underlying flapping flight in insects, results of recent experiments concerning the aerodynamics of insect flight, as well

  20. Olfactory disruption: towards controlling important insect vectors of disease

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Chemical repellents are used to decrease contacts between insect disease vectors and their hosts, thus reducing the probability of disease transmission. The molecular mechanisms by which repellents have their effects are poorly understood and remain a controversial topic. Here we present recent re...

  1. Novel antibiotic compounds produced by the insect pathogenic bacterium photorhabdus.

    PubMed

    Eleftherianos, Ioannis G

    2009-06-01

    Phototorhabdus is an insect pathogenic enterobacterium which maintains a mutualistic interaction with heterorhabditid nematodes. While the bacteria live in the nematode gut, the nematodes live in the soil and infect insect larvae, releasing their symbiotic bacteria into the insect blood. Here the bacteria reproduce and kill the insect by septicaemia. The nematodes then feed on the bacterial biomass and undergo several rounds of reproduction before emerging from the cadaver carrying their bacterial symbionts. Photorhabdus secretes a versatile armory of antimicrobial molecules into the insect corpse. These biocides exert a range of antimicrobial killing activities and serve a dual function. They minimize competition from non-symbiotic bacteria and prevent microbial putrefaction of the nematode-infected insect cadaver. The goal of this review is to describe current knowledge of the molecular mechanisms involved in the production of bacteriocins by Photorhabdus. Recent important advances in identifying novel potent antibiotic compounds from Photorhabdus and elucidating their complex mode of action in relation to pathogenicity and symbiosis associations are also discussed. The last part of this review focuses on the potential role Photorhabdus antibiotics may play in contributing to the discovery of novel pharmaceutical and agrochemical products. The present article is a short review of recent patents on Photohabdus.

  2. Diversity and functions of protein glycosylation in insects.

    PubMed

    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.

  3. Water management by dormant insects: comparisons between dehydration resistance during summer aestivation and winter diapause.

    PubMed

    Benoit, Joshua B

    2010-01-01

    During summer in temperate regions and tropical dry seasons insects are exposed to extended periods with little available water. To counter this dehydration stress, insects have two options. They can either remain active by utilizing mechanisms to function under severe water stress and high temperatures, or they can escape from the stressful environment by exploiting an aestivation mechanism. During aestivation, insects undergo a variety of molecular and biochemical changes to arrest development, reduce metabolism, tolerate high temperatures, and increase their ability to maintain water balance. In this review, I provide a synopsis of known and possible mechanisms utilized by insects to reduce the stress of dehydration during aestivation. Comparative observations of aestivating and diapausing insects are also discussed to assess similarities and differences in the methods used by insects to increase dehydration resistance between these two types of dormancies. Adaptations that alter moisture requirements during diapause (low metabolic rate, increases in osmolytes, shifts in cuticular hydrocarbons, cell membrane restructing) are likely similar to those utilized at the induction and during the maintenance phase of aestivation. Few studies have been conducted on the physiology, particularly the biochemistry and molecular regulation, of aestivating insects, indicating that much more research is needed to fully assess water balance characteristics of insects during aestivation. Whether an insect is in diapause or aestivation, behavioral, biochemical, and physiological adaptations are essential for suppressing water loss and enhancing survival in a desiccated state.

  4. Insect-symbiont systems: from complex relationships to biotechnological applications.

    PubMed

    Chaves, Sandra; Neto, Marta; Tenreiro, Rogério

    2009-12-01

    Microbial symbiosis is a ubiquitous aspect of life and was a major element in the ability of insects to explore several adverse environments. To date, the study of symbiosis in insects has been impaired by the unculturability of most symbionts. However, some molecular methods represent powerful tools to help understand insect-microorganism associations and to disclose new symbiont-host systems. Beyond playing an essential role in nutrition and development of the insects, symbionts can produce bioactive compounds that protect the host against adverse environmental conditions, predators and/or direct competitors. Since the search for natural bioactive products and new enzymes is a developing area, understanding the diversity and nature of symbiont-host relationships paves the way for the exploitation of new resources in biotechnology. Furthermore, genetic transformation of the symbionts with genes that code for compounds that are toxic for pathogenic and phytopathogenic agents is also a promising area of application of the insect-symbiont relationships. The search for new bioactive compounds, the use of symbionts for pest and disease control and the molecular strategies applied for these purposes are issues of particular interest for innovative biotechnological applications and are addressed in the present review.

  5. The multi-tasking gut epithelium of insects.

    PubMed

    Huang, Jia-Hsin; Jing, Xiangfeng; Douglas, Angela E

    2015-12-01

    The insect gut epithelium plays a vital role in multiple processes, including nutrition, immunity and osmoregulation. Recent research is revealing the molecular and biochemical basis of these functions. For example, the pattern of nutrient acquisition by the gut epithelium is integrated into the overall regulation of nutrient allocation, as illustrated by evidence for systemic controls over expression of key genes coding digestive enzymes and transporters in carbohydrate acquisition; and the abundance and diversity of microorganisms in the gut lumen is regulated by multiple molecular properties of the gut epithelial cells, including the synthesis of enzymes that produce reactive oxygen species and anti-microbial peptides. These traits are underpinned by the function of the gut epithelium as a selective barrier which mediates the controlled movement of water, ions, metabolites and macromolecules between the gut lumen and insect tissues. Breakdown of the gut epithelial barrier has been implicated in muscle paralysis of insects at low temperatures (chill coma) and in aging. The key challenge for future research is to understand how the multiple functions of the insect gut epithelium are integrated by signaling interactions among epithelial cells, the gut microbiota and other insect organs.

  6. Genome Editing: From Drosophila to Non-Model Insects and Beyond.

    PubMed

    Huang, Yueping; Liu, Zhiping; Rong, Yikang S

    2016-05-20

    Insect is the largest group of animals on land. Many insect species inflict economical and health losses to humans. Yet many more benefit us by helping to maintain balances in our ecosystem. The benefits that insects offer remain largely untapped, justifying our continuing efforts to develop tools to better understand their biology and to better manage their activities. Here we focus on reviewing the progresses made in the development of genome engineering tools for model insects. Instead of detailed descriptions of the molecular mechanisms underlying each technical advance, we focus our discussion on the logistics for implementing similar tools in non-model insects. Since none of the tools were developed specific for insects, similar approaches can be applied to other non-model organisms.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  8. On anti-portfolio effects in science and technology with application to reaction kinetics, chemical synthesis, and molecular biology.

    PubMed

    Vlad, Marcel O; Corlan, Alexandru Dan; Popa, Vlad T; Ross, John

    2007-11-20

    The portfolio effect is the increase of the stability of a system to random fluctuations with the increase of the number of random state variables due to spreading the risk among these variables; many examples exist in various areas of science and technology. We report the existence of an opposite effect, the decrease of stability to random fluctuations due to an increase of the number of random state variables. For successive industrial or biochemical processes of independent, random efficiencies, the stability of the total efficiency decreases with the increase of the number of processes. Depending on the variables considered, the same process may display both a portfolio as well as an anti-portfolio behavior. In disordered kinetics, the activation energy of a reaction or transport process is the result of a sum of random components. Although the total activation energy displays a portfolio effect, the rate coefficient displays an anti-portfolio effect. For random-channel kinetics, the stability of the total rate coefficient increases with the average number of reaction pathways, whereas the stability of the survival function has an opposite behavior: it decreases exponentially with the increase of the average number of reaction pathways (anti-portfolio effect). In molecular biology, the total rate of a nucleotide substitution displays a portfolio effect, whereas the probability that no substitutions occur displays an anti-portfolio effect, resulting in faster evolutionary processes due to fluctuations. The anti-portfolio effect emerges for products of random variables or equations involving multiplicative convolution products.

  9. Characterization of the Key Aroma Compounds in Raw Licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra L.) by Means of Molecular Sensory Science.

    PubMed

    Wagner, Juliane; Granvogl, Michael; Schieberle, Peter

    2016-11-09

    Application of the molecular sensory science concept including aroma extract dilution analysis (AEDA) on the basis of gas chromatography-olfactometry combined with gas chromatography-mass spectrometry elucidated the key odorants of raw licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra L.). Fifty aroma-active compounds were located via AEDA; 16 thereof were identified in raw licorice for the first time. γ-Nonalactone, 4-hydroxy-2,5-dimethylfuran-3(2H)-one, and 4-hydroxy-3-methoxybenzaldehyde showed the highest flavor dilution (FD) factor of 1024. Forty-three compounds were quantitated by means of stable isotope dilution analysis (SIDA; 6 more compounds were quantitated using labeled standards with structures similar to the respective analytes) and odor activity values (OAVs; ratio of concentration to the respective odor threshold) were calculated revealing OAVs ≥1 for 39 compounds. Thereby, (E,Z)-2,6-nonadienal, 5-isopropyl-2-methylphenol, hexanal, and linalool showed the highest OAVs. On the basis of the obtained results, an aqueous reconstitution model was prepared by mixing these 39 odorants in their naturally occurring concentrations. The recombinate elicited an aroma profile very similar to the profile of raw licorice, proving that all key aroma compounds were correctly identified and quantitated.

  10. The experimental teaching reform in biochemistry and molecular biology for undergraduate students in Peking University Health Science Center.

    PubMed

    Yang, Xiaohan; Sun, Luyang; Zhao, Ying; Yi, Xia; Zhu, Bin; Wang, Pu; Lin, Hong; Ni, Juhua

    2015-01-01

    Since 2010, second-year undergraduate students of an eight-year training program leading to a Doctor of Medicine degree or Doctor of Philosophy degree in Peking University Health Science Center (PKUHSC) have been required to enter the "Innovative talent training project." During that time, the students joined a research lab and participated in some original research work. There is a critical educational need to prepare these students for the increasing accessibility of research experience. The redesigned experimental curriculum of biochemistry and molecular biology was developed to fulfill such a requirement, which keeps two original biochemistry experiments (Gel filtration and Enzyme kinetics) and adds a new two-experiment component called "Analysis of anti-tumor drug induced apoptosis." The additional component, also known as the "project-oriented experiment" or the "comprehensive experiment," consists of Western blotting and a DNA laddering assay to assess the effects of etoposide (VP16) on the apoptosis signaling pathways. This reformed laboratory teaching system aims to enhance the participating students overall understanding of important biological research techniques and the instrumentation involved, and to foster a better understanding of the research process all within a classroom setting. Student feedback indicated that the updated curriculum helped them improve their operational and self-learning capability, and helped to increase their understanding of theoretical knowledge and actual research processes, which laid the groundwork for their future research work.

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

    PubMed Central

    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. Cell signalling mechanisms for insect stress tolerance.

    PubMed

    Davies, Shireen A; Cabrero, Pablo; Overend, Gayle; Aitchison, Lorraine; Sebastian, Sujith; Terhzaz, Selim; Dow, Julian A T

    2014-01-01

    Insects successfully occupy most environmental niches and this success depends on surviving a broad range of environmental stressors including temperature, desiccation, xenobiotic, osmotic and infection stress. Epithelial tissues play key roles as barriers between the external and internal environments and therefore maintain homeostasis and organismal tolerance to multiple stressors. As such, the crucial role of epithelia in organismal stress tolerance cannot be underestimated. At a molecular level, multiple cell-specific signalling pathways including cyclic cAMP, cyclic cGMP and calcium modulate tissue, and hence, organismal responses to stress. Thus, epithelial cell-specific signal transduction can be usefully studied to determine the molecular mechanisms of organismal stress tolerance in vivo. This review will explore cell signalling modulation of stress tolerance in insects by focusing on cell signalling in a fluid transporting epithelium--the Malpighian tubule. Manipulation of specific genes and signalling pathways in only defined tubule cell types can influence the survival outcome in response to multiple environmental stressors including desiccation, immune, salt (ionic) and oxidative stress, suggesting that studies in the genetic model Drosophila melanogaster may reveal novel pathways required for stress tolerance.

  13. Nature's Versatile Engine: Insect Flight Muscle Inside and Out

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vigoreaux, Jim

    This first edition book integrates knowledge from all disciplines that study muscle function, from single molecule biophysics to flight aerodynamics. Nature's Versatile Engine, is an expose of up-to-date advances in muscle research from the molecular to the organismal, covering all levels of biological organization. While the main emphasis is on Drosophila melanogaster (as it is the organism most widely studied), other species of flying insects are also covered. Because of its multidisciplinary nature, the book should appeal to just about anyone with an interest in muscle biology or insect flight.

  14. Radar Observation of Insects - Mosquitoes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frost, E.; Downing, J.

    1979-01-01

    Tests were conducted at several sites over the coastal lowlands of New Jersey and over a region of high plains and low mountains in Oklahoma. In one area, a salt marsh in New Jersey, extensive ground tests were combined with laboratory data on expected insect backscatter to arrive at an extremely convincing model of the insect origin of most Dot Angels. A great deal of insight was studied from radar on the buildup and dispersal of insect swarms, since radar can follow where other means of trapping and observation cannot. Data on large-scale behavior as a function of wind and topography are presented. Displayed techniques which show individual or small swarm motion within some larger cloud or mass, or which can show the overall motion over great distances were developed. The influence of wind and terrain on insect motion and dispersal is determined from radar data.

  15. Insect symbionts in food webs

    PubMed Central

    Henry, Lee M.

    2016-01-01

    Recent research has shown that the bacterial endosymbionts of insects are abundant and diverse, and that they have numerous different effects on their hosts' biology. Here we explore how insect endosymbionts might affect the structure and dynamics of insect communities. Using the obligate and facultative symbionts of aphids as an example, we find that there are multiple ways that symbiont presence might affect food web structure. Many symbionts are now known to help their hosts escape or resist natural enemy attack, and others can allow their hosts to withstand abiotic stress or affect host plant use. In addition to the direct effect of symbionts on aphid phenotypes there may be indirect effects mediated through trophic and non-trophic community interactions. We believe that by using data from barcoding studies to identify bacterial symbionts, this extra, microbial dimension to insect food webs can be better elucidated. This article is part of the themed issue ‘From DNA barcodes to biomes’. PMID:27481779

  16. Entomopathogenic nematodes and insect management

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Entomopathogenic nematodes (genera Heterorhabditis, Steinernema, and Neosteinernema) are used as bioinsecticides. The nematodes are ubiquitous and have been isolated in soil of every continent except Antarctica. The nematodes kill insects through a mutualism with a bacterium (Photorhabdus spp. or ...

  17. Freshwater Biodiversity and Insect Diversification

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

    Inland waters cover less than one percent of Earth’s surface, but harbor more than six percent 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 exceptionally susceptible to environmental change, and exhibit marked ecological gradients. The amphibiotic lifestyles of aquatic insects result in complex contributions of extinction and allopatric and non-allopatric speciation in species 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 bio-indicators. 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. PMID:24160433

  18. Environmental Science: 49 Science Fair Projects. Science Fair Projects Series.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bonnet, Robert L.; Keen, G. Daniel

    This book contains 49 science fair projects designed for 6th to 9th grade students. Projects are organized by the topics of soil, ecology (projects in habitat and life cycles), pests and controls (projects in weeds and insects), recycling (projects in resources and conservation), waste products (projects in decomposition), microscopic organisms,…

  19. 7 CFR 51.2008 - Insect injury.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Insect injury. 51.2008 Section 51.2008 Agriculture... Standards for Grades of Filberts in the Shell 1 Definitions § 51.2008 Insect injury. Insect injury means that the insect, frass or web is present inside the nut or the kernel shows definite evidence of...

  20. 46 CFR 108.215 - Insect screens.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 46 Shipping 4 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Insect screens. 108.215 Section 108.215 Shipping COAST... Construction and Arrangement Accommodation Spaces § 108.215 Insect screens. (a) Accommodation spaces must be protected against the admission of insects. (b) Insect screens must be installed when natural ventilation...

  1. 7 CFR 51.2008 - Insect injury.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Insect injury. 51.2008 Section 51.2008 Agriculture... Standards for Grades of Filberts in the Shell 1 Definitions § 51.2008 Insect injury. Insect injury means that the insect, frass or web is present inside the nut or the kernel shows definite evidence of...

  2. 46 CFR 108.215 - Insect screens.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 46 Shipping 4 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Insect screens. 108.215 Section 108.215 Shipping COAST... Construction and Arrangement Accommodation Spaces § 108.215 Insect screens. (a) Accommodation spaces must be protected against the admission of insects. (b) Insect screens must be installed when natural ventilation...

  3. Preface: Insect Pathology, 2nd ed

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Insect pathology is an essential component of entomology and provides a non-chemical alternative for insect pest management. There are several groups of organisms that can infect and kill insects including viruses, fungi, microsporidia, bacteria, protists, and nematodes. The dilemma in insect patho...

  4. 7 CFR 51.2008 - Insect injury.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Insect injury. 51.2008 Section 51.2008 Agriculture... Standards for Grades of Filberts in the Shell 1 Definitions § 51.2008 Insect injury. Insect injury means that the insect, frass or web is present inside the nut or the kernel shows definite evidence of...

  5. 7 CFR 51.2122 - Insect injury.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Insect injury. 51.2122 Section 51.2122 Agriculture..., CERTIFICATION, AND STANDARDS) United States Standards for Grades of Shelled Almonds Definitions § 51.2122 Insect injury. Insect injury means that the insect, web, or frass is present or there is definite evidence...

  6. 7 CFR 51.2290 - Insect injury.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Insect injury. 51.2290 Section 51.2290 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Standards, Inspections, Marketing... § 51.2290 Insect injury. Insect injury means that the insect, web, frass or other evidence of...

  7. 7 CFR 51.2122 - Insect injury.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Insect injury. 51.2122 Section 51.2122 Agriculture..., CERTIFICATION, AND STANDARDS) United States Standards for Grades of Shelled Almonds Definitions § 51.2122 Insect injury. Insect injury means that the insect, web, or frass is present or there is definite evidence...

  8. 7 CFR 51.2290 - Insect injury.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Insect injury. 51.2290 Section 51.2290 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Standards, Inspections, Marketing... § 51.2290 Insect injury. Insect injury means that the insect, web, frass or other evidence of...

  9. 46 CFR 108.215 - Insect screens.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 46 Shipping 4 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Insect screens. 108.215 Section 108.215 Shipping COAST... Construction and Arrangement Accommodation Spaces § 108.215 Insect screens. (a) Accommodation spaces must be protected against the admission of insects. (b) Insect screens must be installed when natural ventilation...

  10. 46 CFR 108.215 - Insect screens.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 46 Shipping 4 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Insect screens. 108.215 Section 108.215 Shipping COAST... Construction and Arrangement Accommodation Spaces § 108.215 Insect screens. (a) Accommodation spaces must be protected against the admission of insects. (b) Insect screens must be installed when natural ventilation...

  11. 46 CFR 108.215 - Insect screens.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 46 Shipping 4 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Insect screens. 108.215 Section 108.215 Shipping COAST... Construction and Arrangement Accommodation Spaces § 108.215 Insect screens. (a) Accommodation spaces must be protected against the admission of insects. (b) Insect screens must be installed when natural ventilation...

  12. PARTIAL SUPPORT OF THE COMMITTEE OF ATOMIC, MOLECULAR, AND OPTICAL SCIENCES Final Report for the period September 30, 2008 to June 30, 2014

    SciTech Connect

    Lancaster, James

    2015-06-29

    This report is the final report for the 2008-2014 cycle of DOE support for the Committee on Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Sciences. Highlights of the committee’s activities over this period included: • Meetings of the committee were held semiannually (Washington, DC in April and Irvine, CA in October) for four of the six years and annually the last two years (Washington, DC in April). • Committee meetings included half-day focus sessions on each of the areas identified in the last AMO decadal survey as having great scientific promise and short summaries of the focus session were prepared and delivered to sponsoring agencies. • CAMOS initiated a study that has been funded on high intensity lasers. DOE support for CAMOS has been of central importance to the committee’s ability to continue to fulfill its mandate to the Board on Physics and Astronomy and to the wider atomic, molecular, and optical sciences research community.

  13. Allergic reactions to insect stings and bites.

    PubMed

    Moffitt, John E

    2003-11-01

    Insect stings are an important cause of anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis can also occur from insect bites but is less common. Insect venoms contain several well-characterized allergens that can trigger anaphylactic reactions. Effective methods to diagnose insect sting allergy and assess risk of future sting reactions have been developed. Management strategies using insect avoidance measures, self-injectable epinephrine, and allergen immunotherapy are very effective in reducing insect-allergic patients' risk of reaction from future stings. Diagnostic and management strategies for patients allergic to insect bites are less developed.

  14. Neuropeptidases and the metabolic inactivation of insect neuropeptides.

    PubMed

    Isaac, R Elwyn; Bland, Nicholas D; Shirras, Alan D

    2009-05-15

    Neuropeptidases play a key role in regulating neuropeptide signalling activity in the central nervous system of animals. They are oligopeptidases that are generally found on the surface of neuronal cells facing the synaptic and peri-synaptic space and therefore are ideally placed for the metabolic inactivation of neuropeptide transmitters/modulators. This review discusses the structure of insect neuropeptides in relation to their susceptibility to hydrolysis by peptidases and the need for specialist enzymes to degrade many neuropeptides. It focuses on five neuropeptidase families (neprilysin, dipeptidyl-peptidase IV, angiotensin-converting enzyme, aminopeptidase and dipeptidyl aminopeptidase III) that have been implicated in the metabolic inactivation of neuropeptides in the central nervous system of insects. Experimental evidence for the involvement of these peptidases in neuropeptide metabolism is reviewed and their properties are compared to similar neuropeptide inactivating peptidases of the mammalian brain. We also discuss how the sequencing of insect genomes has led to the molecular identification of candidate neuropeptidase genes.

  15. Making way for molecular biology: institutionalizing and managing reform of biological science in a UK university during the 1980s and 1990s.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Duncan; Lancelot, Gaël

    2008-03-01

    Historians agree that the second half of the twentieth century saw widespread changes in the structure of biological science in universities. This shift was, and continues to be, characterized by the de-differentiation of nineteenth and early twentieth century disciplines, with increasing emphasis on the methods and authority of molecular fields. Yet we currently lack appreciation of the dynamics that underpinned these changes, and of their tangible effects on the working practices of those involved. In this article we examine the wholesale reform of biological science at the University of Manchester, England, that occurred in two successive steps in 1986 and 1993. We examine how reform was enabled by economic and political factors, as staff seized upon national pressures; in so doing, we emphasize how this reform was shaped by a generational view of the biological sciences as a one field, unified by molecular techniques. We assess how the success of these reforms was tied to new management policies that rewarded research activity in molecular fields, and refigured teaching as a punishment for research inactivity. We close by showing how our analysis fits amongst, and can contribute to, 'big picture' debates in the history and sociology of knowledge.

  16. Can insects develop resistance to insect pathogenic fungi?

    PubMed

    Dubovskiy, Ivan M; Whitten, Miranda M A; Yaroslavtseva, Olga N; Greig, Carolyn; Kryukov, Vadim Y; Grizanova, Ekaterina V; Mukherjee, Krishnendu; Vilcinskas, Andreas; Glupov, Viktor V; Butt, Tariq M

    2013-01-01

    Microevolutionary adaptations and mechanisms of fungal pathogen resistance were explored in a melanic population of the Greater wax moth, Galleria mellonella. Under constant selective pressure from the insect pathogenic fungus Beauveria bassiana, 25(th) generation larvae exhibited significantly enhanced resistance, which was specific to this pathogen and not to another insect pathogenic fungus, Metarhizium anisopliae. Defense and stress management strategies of selected (resistant) and non-selected (susceptible) insect lines were compared to uncover mechanisms underpinning resistance, and the possible cost of those survival strategies. We hypothesize that the insects developed a transgenerationally primed resistance to the fungus B. bassiana, a costly trait that was achieved not by compromising life-history traits but rather by prioritizing and re-allocating pathogen-species-specific augmentations to integumental front-line defenses that are most likely to be encountered by invading fungi. Specifically during B. bassiana infection, systemic immune defenses are suppressed in favour of a more limited but targeted repertoire of enhanced responses in the cuticle and epidermis of the integument (e.g. expression of the fungal enzyme inhibitor IMPI, and cuticular phenoloxidase activity). A range of putative stress-management factors (e.g. antioxidants) is also activated during the specific response of selected insects to B. bassiana but not M. anisopliae. This too occurs primarily in the integument, and probably contributes to antifungal defense and/or helps ameliorate the damage inflicted by the fungus or the host's own immune responses.

  17. Can Insects Develop Resistance to Insect Pathogenic Fungi?

    PubMed Central

    Yaroslavtseva, Olga N.; Greig, Carolyn; Kryukov, Vadim Y.; Grizanova, Ekaterina V.; Mukherjee, Krishnendu; Vilcinskas, Andreas; Glupov, Viktor V.; Butt, Tariq M.

    2013-01-01

    Microevolutionary adaptations and mechanisms of fungal pathogen resistance were explored in a melanic population of the Greater wax moth, Galleria mellonella. Under constant selective pressure from the insect pathogenic fungus Beauveria bassiana, 25th generation larvae exhibited significantly enhanced resistance, which was specific to this pathogen and not to another insect pathogenic fungus, Metarhizium anisopliae. Defense and stress management strategies of selected (resistant) and non-selected (susceptible) insect lines were compared to uncover mechanisms underpinning resistance, and the possible cost of those survival strategies. We hypothesize that the insects developed a transgenerationally primed resistance to the fungus B. bassiana, a costly trait that was achieved not by compromising life-history traits but rather by prioritizing and re-allocating pathogen-species-specific augmentations to integumental front-line defenses that are most likely to be encountered by invading fungi. Specifically during B. bassiana infection, systemic immune defenses are suppressed in favour of a more limited but targeted repertoire of enhanced responses in the cuticle and epidermis of the integument (e.g. expression of the fungal enzyme inhibitor IMPI, and cuticular phenoloxidase activity). A range of putative stress-management factors (e.g. antioxidants) is also activated during the specific response of selected insects to B. bassiana but not M. anisopliae. This too occurs primarily in the integument, and probably contributes to antifungal defense and/or helps ameliorate the damage inflicted by the fungus or the host’s own immune responses. PMID:23560083

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

    PubMed Central

    Ratcliffe, Norman; Azambuja, Patricia; Mello, Cicero Brasileiro

    2014-01-01

    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. PMID:24883072

  19. The Medical Potential of Antimicrobial Peptides from Insects.

    PubMed

    Tonk, Miray; Vilcinskas, Andreas

    2017-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are peptide-based effector molecules produced by the innate immune system to combat microbes. Insects produce the broadest repertoire of AMPs, and their potent antimicrobial activity in vitro and in vivo has promoted their development as alternatives to conventional antibiotics, in an attempt to address the threat of multidrug-resistant pathogens. Here we discuss current obstacles that hinder the therapeutic development of novel insect-derived AMPs, including potential cytotoxic, immunogenic and allergenic side effects, and the high costs of large-scale production. These challenges may be overcome by the falling costs of synthetic peptide analogs and the heterologous production of recombinant peptides in insect cells or plants (molecular pharming). Insect AMPs offer a promising alternative for the treatment of skin, eye and lung infections, and could also restore the susceptibility of multidrug-resistant pathogens to conventional antibiotics when used as combinatorial treatments. Insect AMPs can also be used as templates for the rational design of peptide mimetics to overcome the drawbacks of natural therapeutic peptides.

  20. Evolutionary plasticity of insect immunity.

    PubMed

    Vilcinskas, Andreas

    2013-02-01

    Many insect genomes have been sequenced and the innate immune responses of several species have been studied by transcriptomics, inviting the comparative analysis of immunity-related genes. Such studies have demonstrated significant evolutionary plasticity, with the emergence of novel proteins and protein domains correlated with insects adapting to both abiotic and biotic environmental stresses. This review article focuses on effector molecules such as antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) and proteinase inhibitors, which display greater evolutionary dynamism than conserved components such as immunity-related signaling molecules. There is increasing evidence to support an extended role for insect AMPs beyond defense against pathogens, including the management of beneficial endosymbionts. The total number of AMPs varies among insects with completed genome sequences, providing intriguing examples of immunity gene expansion and loss. This plasticity is discussed in the context of recent developments in evolutionary ecology suggesting that the maintenance and deployment of immune responses reallocates resources from other fitness-related traits thus requiring fitness trade-offs. Based on our recent studies using both model and non-model insects, I propose that insect immunity genes can be lost when alternative defense strategies with a lower fitness penalty have evolved, such as the so-called social immunity in bees, the chemical sanitation of the microenvironment by some beetles, and the release of antimicrobial secondary metabolites in the hemolymph. Conversely, recent studies provide evidence for the expansion and functional diversification of insect AMPs and proteinase inhibitors to reflect coevolution with a changing pathosphere and/or adaptations to habitats or food associated with microbial contamination.

  1. Beta-Amino Acid Analogs of an Insect Neuropeptide Feature Potent Bioactivity and Resistance to Peptidase Hydrolysis

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2006-01-01

    AND METHODS Peptide Synthesis Insect kinin analogs were synthesized via Fmoc methodology on Rink Amide resin (Novabiochem, San Diego, CA) using Fmoc ...500–1,900) 100 a 95% confidence limit ( CL ) values in parentheses.10 b-Amino Acid Analogs of an Insect Neuropeptide 79 Biopolymers (Peptide Science) DOI

  2. Planting Sentinel European Trees in Eastern Asia as a Novel Method to Identify Potential Insect Pest Invaders

    PubMed Central

    Roques, Alain; Fan, Jian-ting; Courtial, Béatrice; Zhang, Yan-zhuo; Yart, Annie; Auger-Rozenberg, Marie-Anne; Denux, Olivier; Kenis, Marc; Baker, Richard; Sun, Jiang-hua

    2015-01-01

    Quarantine measures to prevent insect invasions tend to focus on well-known pests but a large proportion of the recent invaders were not known to cause significant damage in their native range, or were not even known to science before their introduction. A novel method is proposed to detect new potential pests of woody plants in their region of origin before they are introduced to a new continent. Since Asia is currently considered to be the main supplier of insect invaders to Europe, sentinel trees were planted in China during 2007-2011 as an early warning tool to identify the potential for additional Asian insect species to colonize European trees. Seedlings (1-1.5 m tall) of five broadleaved (Quercus petraea, Q. suber, Q. ilex, Fagus sylvatica, and Carpinus betulus) and two conifer species (Abies alba and Cupressus sempervirens) were planted in blocks of 100 seedlings at two widely separated sites (one in a nursery near Beijing and the other in a forest environment near Fuyang in eastern China), and then regularly surveyed for colonization by insects. A total of 104 insect species, mostly defoliators, were observed on these new hosts, and at least six species were capable of larval development. Although a number of the insects observed were probably incidental feeders, 38 species had more than five colonization events, mostly infesting Q. petraea, and could be considered as being capable of switching to European trees if introduced to Europe. Three years was shown to be an appropriate duration for the experiment, since the rate of colonization then tended to plateau. A majority of the identified species appeared to have switched from agricultural crops and fruit trees rather than from forest trees. Although these results are promising, the method is not appropriate for xylophagous pests and other groups developing on larger trees. Apart from the logistical problems, the identification to species level of the specimens collected was a major difficulty. This

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

    PubMed

    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.

  4. Application of RNA interference in functional genomics studies of a social insect.

    PubMed

    Scharf, Michael E; Zhou, Xuguo; Schwinghammer, Margaret A

    2008-01-01

    Social insects represent a group of organisms that have dual importance from perspectives relating to both basic and applied science. From a basic perspective, social insects serve as excellent model systems for studying social organization, behavioral ecology, neurobiology, and phenotypic plasticity. From applied perspectives, social insects play important roles in the pollination of agricultural crops, in the damage of human structures and commodities, and in cellulose processing in natural ecosystems. With the advent of insect sociogenomics research (and the ability to identify dozens or hundreds of relevant candidate genes from a single experiment) has come a great demand for functional genomics tools for application in gene characterization. To date, RNAi is one of the most powerful tools to have become available for such functional characterizations, and it has broad relevance across a range of insect sociobiology research topics.

  5. Drosophila's view on insect vision.

    PubMed

    Borst, Alexander

    2009-01-13

    Within the last 400 million years, insects have radiated into at least a million species, accounting for more than half of all known living organisms: they are the most successful group in the animal kingdom, found in almost all environments of the planet, ranging in body size from a mere 0.1 mm up to half a meter. Their eyes, together with the respective parts of the nervous system dedicated to the processing of visual information, have long been the subject of intense investigation but, with the exception of some very basic reflexes, it is still not possible to link an insect's visual input to its behavioral output. Fortunately for the field, the fruit fly Drosophila is an insect, too. This genetic workhorse holds great promise for the insect vision field, offering the possibility of recording, suppressing or stimulating any single neuron in its nervous system. Here, I shall give a brief synopsis of what we currently know about insect vision, describe the genetic toolset available in Drosophila and give some recent examples of how the application of these tools have furthered our understanding of color and motion vision in Drosophila.

  6. Life sciences

    SciTech Connect

    Day, L.

    1991-04-01

    This document is the 1989--1990 Annual Report for the Life Sciences Divisions of the University of California/Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory. Specific progress reports are included for the Cell and Molecular Biology Division, the Research Medicine and Radiation Biophysics Division (including the Advanced Light Source Life Sciences Center), and the Chemical Biodynamics Division. 450 refs., 46 figs. (MHB)

  7. Mechanisms of plant defense against insect herbivores

    PubMed Central

    War, Abdul Rashid; Paulraj, Michael Gabriel; Ahmad, Tariq; Buhroo, Abdul Ahad; Hussain, Barkat; Ignacimuthu, Savarimuthu; Sharma, Hari Chand

    2012-01-01

    Plants respond to herbivory through various morphological, biochemicals, and molecular mechanisms to counter/offset the effects of herbivore attack. The biochemical mechanisms of defense against the herbivores are wide-ranging, highly dynamic, and are mediated both by direct and indirect defenses. The defensive compounds are either produced constitutively or in response to plant damage, and affect feeding, growth, and survival of herbivores. In addition, plants also release volatile organic compounds that attract the natural enemies of the herbivores. These strategies either act independently or in conjunction with each other. However, our understanding of these defensive mechanisms is still limited. Induced resistance could be exploited as an important tool for the pest management to minimize the amounts of insecticides used for pest control. Host plant resistance to insects, particularly, induced resistance, can also be manipulated with the use of chemical elicitors of secondary metabolites, which confer resistance to insects. By understanding the mechanisms of induced resistance, we can predict the herbivores that are likely to be affected by induced responses. The elicitors of induced responses can be sprayed on crop plants to build up the natural defense system against damage caused by herbivores. The induced responses can also be engineered genetically, so that the defensive compounds are constitutively produced in plants against are challenged by the herbivory. Induced resistance can be exploited for developing crop cultivars, which readily produce the inducible response upon mild infestation, and can act as one of components of integrated pest management for sustainable crop production. PMID:22895106

  8. Endosymbiont Tolerance and Control within Insect Hosts

    PubMed Central

    Ratzka, Carolin; Gross, Roy; Feldhaar, Heike

    2012-01-01

    Bacterial endosymbioses are very common in insects and can range from obligate to facultative as well as from mutualistic to pathogenic associations. Several recent studies provide new insight into how endosymbionts manage to establish chronic infections of their hosts without being eliminated by the host immune system. Endosymbiont tolerance may be achieved either by specific bacterial adaptations or by host measurements shielding bacteria from innate defense mechanisms. Nevertheless, insect hosts also need to sustain control mechanisms to prevent endosymbionts from unregulated proliferation. Emerging evidence indicates that in some cases the mutual adaptations of the two organisms may have led to the integration of the endosymbionts as a part of the host immune system. In fact, endosymbionts may provide protective traits against pathogens and predators and may even be required for the proper development of the host immune system during host ontogeny. This review gives an overview of current knowledge of molecular mechanisms ensuring maintenance of chronic infections with mutualistic endosymbionts and the impact of endosymbionts on host immune competence. PMID:26466544

  9. Circadian rhythms in insect disease vectors

    PubMed Central

    Meireles-Filho, Antonio Carlos Alves; Kyriacou, Charalambos Panayiotis

    2013-01-01

    Organisms from bacteria to humans have evolved under predictable daily environmental cycles owing to the Earth’s rotation. This strong selection pressure has generated endogenous circadian clocks that regulate many aspects of behaviour, physiology and metabolism, anticipating and synchronising internal time-keeping to changes in the cyclical environment. In haematophagous insect vectors the circadian clock coordinates feeding activity, which is important for the dynamics of pathogen transmission. We have recently witnessed a substantial advance in molecular studies of circadian clocks in insect vector species that has consolidated behavioural data collected over many years, which provided insights into the regulation of the clock in the wild. Next generation sequencing technologies will facilitate the study of vector genomes/transcriptomes both among and within species and illuminate some of the species-specific patterns of adaptive circadian phenotypes that are observed in the field and in the laboratory. In this review we will explore these recent findings and attempt to identify potential areas for further investigation. PMID:24473802

  10. Insects, infestations and nutrient fluxes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Michalzik, B.

    2012-04-01

    Forest ecosystems are characterized by a high temporal and spatial variability in the vertical transfer of energy and matter within the canopy and the soil compartment. The mechanisms and controlling factors behind canopy processes and system-internal transfer dynamics are imperfectly understood at the moment. Seasonal flux diversities and inhomogeneities in throughfall composition have been reported from coniferous and deciduous forests, and in most cases leaf leaching has been considered as principle driver for differences in the amount and quality of nutrients and organic compounds (Tukey and Morgan 1963). Since herbivorous insects and the processes they initiate received less attention in past times, ecologists now emphasize the need for linking biological processes occurring in different ecosystem strata to explain rates and variability of nutrient cycling (Bardgett et al. 1998, Wardle et al. 2004). Consequently, herbivore insects in the canopies of forests are increasingly identified to play an important role for the (re)cycling and availability of nutrients, or, more generally, for the functioning of ecosystems not only in outbreak situations but also at endemic (non-outbreak) density levels (Stadler et al. 2001, Hunter et al. 2003). Before, little attention was paid to insect herbivores when quantifying element and energy fluxes through ecosystems, although the numerous and different functions insects fulfill in ecosystems (e.g. as pollinators, herbivores or detritivores) were unanimously recognized (Schowalter 2000). Amongst the reasons for this restraint was the argument that the total biomass of insects tends to be relatively low compared to the biomass of trees or the pool of soil organic matter (Ohmart et al. 1983). A second argument which was put forward to justify the inferior role of insects in nutrient cycling were the supposed low defoliation losses between 5-10% of the annual leaf biomass, or net primary production, due to insect herbivory under

  11. The Origins of Molecular Biology: A Pedagogical Tool for the Professional Development of Pre-College Science Teachers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Silverman, Philip M.

    2003-01-01

    We examine the science and pedagogy behind a historical approach to the professional development of pre-college science (primarily biology) teachers. Our intention is to reach professional scientists, who, as a group, are uniquely qualified to provide experience and insights essential to this approach. The underlying research for this article has…

  12. The Science of Pizza: The Molecular Origins of Cheese, Bread, and Digestion Using Interactive Activities for the General Public

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rowat, Amy C.; Rosenberg, Daniel; Hollar, Kathryn A.; Stone, Howard A.

    2010-01-01

    We describe a presentation on the science of pizza, which is designed for the general public including children ages 6 and older. The presentation focuses on the science of making and digesting cheese and bread. We highlight 4 major scientific themes: (1) how macromolecules such as carbohydrates and proteins are composed of atoms and small…

  13. Calcitonin-like diuretic hormones in insects.

    PubMed

    Zandawala, Meet

    2012-10-01

    Insect neuropeptides control various biological processes including growth, development, homeostasis and reproduction. The calcitonin-like diuretic hormone (CT/DH) is one such neuropeptide that has been shown to affect salt and water transport by Malpighian tubules of several insects. With an increase in the number of sequenced insect genomes, CT/DHs have been predicted in several insect species, making it easier to characterize the gene encoding this hormone and determine its function in the species in question. This mini review summarizes the current knowledge on insect CT/DHs, focusing on mRNA and peptide structures, distribution patterns, physiological roles, and receptors in insects.

  14. Recombinant baculoviruses for insect control.

    PubMed

    Inceoglu, A B; Kamita, S G; Hinton, A C; Huang, Q; Severson, T F; Kang, K; Hammock, B D

    2001-10-01

    Baculoviruses are double-stranded DNA viruses which are highly selective for several insect groups. They are valuable natural control agents, but their utility in many agricultural applications has been limited by their slow speed of kill and narrow host specificity. Baculoviruses have been genetically modified to express foreign genes under powerful promoters in order to accelerate their speed of kill. In our and other laboratories, the expression of genes coding for insect juvenile hormone esterases and various peptide neurotoxins has resulted in recombinant baculoviruses with promise as biological insecticides. These viruses are efficacious in the laboratory, greenhouse and field and dramatically reduce damage caused by insect feeding. The recombinant viruses synergize and are synergized by classical pesticides such as pyrethroids. Since they are highly selective for pest insects, they can be used without disrupting biological control. Because the recombinant virus produces fewer progeny in infected larvae than the wild-type virus, they are rapidly out-competed in the ecosystem. The viruses can be used effectively with crops expressing endotoxins of Bacillus thuringiensis. They can be produced industrially but also by village industries, indicating that they have the potential to deliver sustainable pest control in developing countries. It remains to be seen, however, whether the current generation of recombinant baculoviruses will be competitive with the new generation of synthetic chemical pesticides. Current research clearly indicates, though, that the use of biological vectors of genes for insect control will find a place in agriculture. Baculoviruses will also prove valuable in testing the potential utility of proteins and peptides for insect control.

  15. Proteomic analysis of interaction between a plant virus and its vector insect reveals new functions of hemipteran cuticular protein

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    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 t...

  16. Insect growth regulators and insect control: a critical appraisal.

    PubMed Central

    Siddall, J B

    1976-01-01

    Insect growth regulators (IGRs) of the juvenile hormone type alter physiological processes essential to insect development and appear to act specifically on insects. Three natural juvenile hormones have been found in insects but not in other organisms. Future use of antagonists or inhibitors of hormone synthesis may be technically possible as an advantageous extension of pest control by IGRs. A documented survey of the properties, metabolism, toxicology, and uses of the most commercially advanced chemical, methoprene, shows it to be environmentally acceptable and toxicologically innocuous. Derivation of its current use patterns is discussed and limitations on these are noted. Residue levels and their measurement in the ppb region have allowed exemption from the requirement of tolerances in the EPA registered use of methoprene for mosquito control. Tolerances for foods accompany its fully approved use for control of manure breeding flies through a cattle feed supplement. The human health effects of using this chemical appear to be purely beneficial, but further advances through new IGR chemicals appear unlikely without major changes in regulatory and legislative policy. PMID:976222

  17. Insects as a Nitrogen Source for Plants.

    PubMed

    Behie, Scott W; Bidochka, Michael J

    2013-07-31

    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.

  18. Insects as a Nitrogen Source for Plants

    PubMed Central

    Behie, Scott W.; Bidochka, Michael J.

    2013-01-01

    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. PMID:26462427

  19. Edible Insects in China: Utilization and Prospects.

    PubMed

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

    2017-02-22

    The use of edible insects has a long history in China, where they have been consumed for more than two thousand 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 twenty 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 consumed regularly. 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 health care 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, cicades 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

  20. Genomic features of the damselfly Calopteryx splendens representing a sister clade to most insect orders.

    PubMed

    Ioannidis, Panagiotis; Simao, Felipe A; Waterhouse, Robert M; Manni, Mosè; Seppey, Mathieu; Robertson, Hugh M; Misof, Bernhard; Niehuis, Oliver; Zdobnov, Evgeny M

    2017-01-30

    Insects comprise the most diverse and successful animal group with over one million described species that are found in almost every terrestrial and limnic habitat, with many being used as important models in genetics, ecology, and evolutionary research. Genome sequencing projects have greatly expanded the sampling of species from many insect orders, but genomic resources for species of certain insect lineages have remained relatively limited to date. To address this paucity, we sequenced the genome of the banded demoiselle, Calopteryx splendens, a damselfly (Odonata: Zygoptera) belonging to Palaeoptera, the clade containing the first winged insects. The 1.6 Gbp C. splendens draft genome assembly is one of the largest insect genomes sequenced to date and encodes a predicted set of 22,523 protein-coding genes. Comparative genomic analyses with other sequenced insects identified a relatively small repertoire of C. splendens detoxification genes, which could explain its previously noted sensitivity to habitat pollution. Intriguingly, this repertoire includes a cytochrome P450 gene not previously described in any insect genome. The C. splendens immune gene repertoire appears relatively complete and features several genes encoding novel multi-domain peptidoglycan recognition proteins. Analysis of chemosensory genes revealed the presence of both gustatory and ionotropic receptors, as well as the insect odorant receptor coreceptor gene (OrCo) and at least four partner odorant receptors (ORs). This represents the oldest known instance of a complete OrCo/OR system in insects, and provides the molecular underpinning for odonate olfaction. The C. splendens genome improves the sampling of insect lineages that diverged before the radiation of Holometabola and offers new opportunities for molecular-level evolutionary, ecological, and behavioral studies.

  1. Genomic Features of the Damselfly Calopteryx splendens Representing a Sister Clade to Most Insect Orders

    PubMed Central

    Ioannidis, Panagiotis; Simao, Felipe A.; Waterhouse, Robert M.; Manni, Mosè; Seppey, Mathieu; Robertson, Hugh M.; Misof, Bernhard; Niehuis, Oliver

    2017-01-01

    Insects comprise the most diverse and successful animal group with over one million described species that are found in almost every terrestrial and limnic habitat, with many being used as important models in genetics, ecology, and evolutionary research. Genome sequencing projects have greatly expanded the sampling of species from many insect orders, but genomic resources for species of certain insect lineages have remained relatively limited to date. To address this paucity, we sequenced the genome of the banded demoiselle, Calopteryx splendens, a damselfly (Odonata: Zygoptera) belonging to Palaeoptera, the clade containing the first winged insects. The 1.6 Gbp C. splendens draft genome assembly is one of the largest insect genomes sequenced to date and encodes a predicted set of 22,523 protein-coding genes. Comparative genomic analyses with other sequenced insects identified a relatively small repertoire of C. splendens detoxification genes, which could explain its previously noted sensitivity to habitat pollution. Intriguingly, this repertoire includes a cytochrome P450 gene not previously described in any insect genome. The C. splendens immune gene repertoire appears relatively complete and features several genes encoding novel multi-domain peptidoglycan recognition proteins. Analysis of chemosensory genes revealed the presence of both gustatory and ionotropic receptors, as well as the insect odorant receptor coreceptor gene (OrCo) and at least four partner odorant receptors (ORs). This represents the oldest known instance of a complete OrCo/OR system in insects, and provides the molecular underpinning for odonate olfaction. The C. splendens genome improves the sampling of insect lineages that diverged before the radiation of Holometabola and offers new opportunities for molecular-level evolutionary, ecological, and behavioral studies. PMID:28137743

  2. Common sense about taste: from mammals to insects.

    PubMed

    Yarmolinsky, David A; Zuker, Charles S; Ryba, Nicholas J P

    2009-10-16

    The sense of taste is a specialized chemosensory system dedicated to the evaluation of food and drink. Despite the fact that vertebrates and insects have independently evolved distinct anatomic and molecular pathways for taste sensation, there are clear parallels in the organization and coding logic between the two systems. There is now persuasive evidence that tastant quality is mediated by labeled lines, whereby distinct and strictly segregated populations of taste receptor cells encode each of the taste qualities.

  3. Practical applications of insects' sexual development for pest control.

    PubMed

    Koukidou, M; Alphey, L

    2014-01-01

    Elucidation of the sex differentiation pathway in insects offers an opportunity to understand key aspects of evolutionary developmental biology. In addition, it provides the understanding necessary to manipulate insects in order to develop new synthetic genetics-based tools for the control of pest insects. Considerable progress has been made in this, especially in improvements to the sterile insect technique (SIT). Large scale sex separation is considered highly desirable or essential for most SIT targets. This separation can be provided by genetic methods based on sex-specific gene expression. Investigation of sex determination by many groups has provided molecular components and methods for this. Though the primary sex determination signal varies considerably, key regulatory genes and mechanisms remain surprisingly similar. In most cases studied so far, a primary signal is transmitted to a basal gene at the bottom of the hierarchy (dsx) through an alternative splicing cascade; dsx is itself differentially spliced in males and females. A sex-specific alternative splicing system therefore offers an attractive route to achieve female-specific expression. Experience has shown that alternative splicing modules can be developed with cross-species function; modularity and standardisation and re-use of parts are key principles of synthetic biology. Both female-killing and sex reversal (XX females to phenotypic males) can in principle also be used as efficient alternatives to sterilisation in SIT-like methods. Sexual maturity is yet another area where understanding of sexual development may be applied to insect control programmes. Further detailed understanding of this crucial aspect of insect biology will undoubtedly continue to underpin innovative practical applications.

  4. The Curious Connection Between Insects and Dreams.

    PubMed

    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.

  5. FAQ: Insect Repellent Use and Safety

    MedlinePlus

    ... Mosquito Surveillance Software Health Education Public Service Videos Insect Repellent Use & Safety Recommend on Facebook Tweet Share ... the repellent with you. Top of Page Can insect repellents be used on children? Yes. Most products ...

  6. Insect response to plant defensive protease inhibitors.

    PubMed

    Zhu-Salzman, Keyan; Zeng, Rensen

    2015-01-07

    Plant protease inhibitors (PIs) are natural plant defense proteins that inhibit proteases of invading insect herbivores. However, their anti-insect efficacy is determined not only by their potency toward a vulnerable insect system but also by the response of the insect to such a challenge. Through the long history of coevolution with their host plants, insects have developed sophisticated mechanisms to circumvent antinutritional effects of dietary challenges. Their response takes the form of changes in gene expression and the protein repertoire in cells lining the alimentary tract, the first line of defense. Research in insect digestive proteases has revealed the crucial roles they play in insect adaptation to plant PIs and has brought about a new appreciation of how phytophagous insects employ this group of molecules in both protein digestion and counterdefense. This review provides researchers in related fields an up-to-date summary of recent advances.

  7. Insect Evolution: The Origin of Wings.

    PubMed

    Ross, Andrew

    2017-02-06

    The debate on the evolution of wings in insects has reached a new level. The study of primitive fossil insect nymphs has revealed that wings developed from a combination of the dorsal part of the thorax and the body wall.

  8. Palaeontology: Chinese amber insects bridge the gap.

    PubMed

    Ross, Andrew

    2014-07-21

    n the study of fossil insects, Chinese amber from Fushun has been largely overlooked. A new study now reveals a highly diverse biota and provides a wealth of new information on the past Asian insect fauna.

  9. Insects--How To Study Them

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Matthews, E. G.

    1975-01-01

    Describes an approach to the study of entomology directed at people with no special knowledge of insects. The aim of this approach is to reveal some biological principles by studying insects from an ecological point of view. (GS)

  10. Introducing Virological Concepts Using an Insect Virus.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sheppard, Roger F.

    1980-01-01

    A technique is presented which utilizes wax moth larvae in a laboratory investigation of an insect virus. Describes how an insect virus can be used to introduce undergraduate biology students to laboratory work on viruses and several virological concepts. (SA)

  11. The Curious Connection Between Insects and Dreams

    PubMed Central

    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

  12. Insects Affecting Man. MP-21.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lawson, Fred A.; Spackman, Everett

    The insects discussed in this document are those which have a direct effect upon humans either through a permanent association, as with lice, or a temporary association in the case of flies, bees, wasps, and spiders. In each case, life cycles and identifying characteristics are presented with remarks about the specific effect incurred by man. (CS)

  13. Making Connections with Insect Royalty.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hobbie, Ann

    2000-01-01

    Describes a one-month sixth grade class activity with monarch butterflies called Monarch in the Classroom. Students learn about insects, especially the class material butterflies, including their life cycle, eating habits, migration, and how they overwinter. The lesson plan covers sorting animals, focusing on features, analyzing the community for…

  14. Visual Navigation in Nocturnal Insects.

    PubMed

    Warrant, Eric; Dacke, Marie

    2016-05-01

    Despite their tiny eyes and brains, nocturnal insects have evolved a remarkable capacity to visually navigate at night. Whereas some use moonlight or the stars as celestial compass cues to maintain a straight-line course, others use visual landmarks to navigate to and from their nest. These impressive abilities rely on highly sensitive compound eyes and specialized visual processing strategies in the brain.

  15. The Seat of Insect Learning.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dyer, Fred C.

    1997-01-01

    Describes the role of mushroom bodies--cup-shaped structures perched atop the brain of an insect--in learning. Mushroom bodies may help fruit flies in learning meaningful odors, cockroaches in spatial learning, and honeybees both in locating pollen and nectar and in navigating back to the colony. (PVD)

  16. [Individual protection against insect vectors].

    PubMed

    Carnevale, P; Mouchet, J

    1997-01-01

    Many diseases for which no vaccine is available are transmitted by insect and arthropod vectors, the main exceptions being yellow fever and Japanese encephalitis B. Treatment is less and less effective due to the development of chemoresistance to therapeutic and prophylactic drugs as is well-illustrated by malaria. One of the best methods of preventing these diseases is personal protection against insect bites. Personal protection measures can be divided into three categories which can be used separately or in combination : application of repellents to the skin, wearing clothes impregnated with insecticides, and use of bed nets and other barriers impregnated with insecticides. The choice of method depends on the type of insect vector involved. For insects that are active during the day or at dusk, application of repellents to the skin gives good short-term protection and wearing impregnated clothes is useful. Bed nets that have been properly impregnated with pyrethroids are highly effective for night-time protection. Since personal protection methods are not 100% effective, they must be used in association with chemoprophylaxis according to medical guidelines. Medical advice should be sought if fever should occur especially after returning from a trip in the tropics.

  17. Bug City: Aquatic Insects [Videotape].

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    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,…

  18. The insect SNMP gene family

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    SNMPs are membrane proteins that have been shown to associate with chemosensory neurons in insects; in Drosophila melanogaster, SNMP1 has been shown to be essential for the detection of the pheromone cis vaccenyl acetate (Benton et al., 2001; Jin et al., 2008). To extend these observations to other ...

  19. Nontoxic Antifreeze for Insect Traps

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Propylene glycol in water is a safe and effective alternative to ethylene glycol as a capture liquid in insect traps (pitfalls, flight intercepts, pan traps). Propylene glycol formulations are readily available because it is the primary (95%) ingredient in certain automotive antifreeze formulations...

  20. Exaggerated trait growth in insects

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Animal structures occasionally attain extreme proportions, eclipsing in size other, surrounding body parts. We review insect examples of exaggerated traits, such as the mandibles of stag beetles, the claspers of praying mantises, the elongated hindlimbs of grasshoppers, and the giant heads of soldie...

  1. Evolution of insect olfactory receptors

    PubMed Central

    Missbach, Christine; Dweck, Hany KM; Vogel, Heiko; Vilcinskas, Andreas; Stensmyr, Marcus C; Hansson, Bill S; Grosse-Wilde, Ewald

    2014-01-01

    The olfactory sense detects a plethora of behaviorally relevant odor molecules; gene families involved in olfaction exhibit high diversity in different animal phyla. Insects detect volatile molecules using olfactory (OR) or ionotropic receptors (IR) and in some cases gustatory receptors (GRs). While IRs are expressed in olfactory organs across Protostomia, ORs have been hypothesized to be an adaptation to a terrestrial insect lifestyle. We investigated the olfactory system of the primary wingless bristletail Lepismachilis y-signata (Archaeognatha), the firebrat Thermobia domestica (Zygentoma) and the neopteran leaf insect Phyllium siccifolium (Phasmatodea). ORs and the olfactory coreceptor (Orco) are with very high probability lacking in Lepismachilis; in Thermobia we have identified three Orco candidates, and in Phyllium a fully developed OR/Orco-based system. We suggest that ORs did not arise as an adaptation to a terrestrial lifestyle, but evolved later in insect evolution, with Orco being present before the appearance of ORs. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.02115.001 PMID:24670956

  2. Transposable elements for insect transformation

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The germ-line of more than 35 species from five orders of insects have been genetically transformed, using vectors derived from Class II transposable elements. Initially the P and hobo vector systems developed for D. melanogaster were not applicable to other species, but four transposons found in ot...

  3. The impact of microbial symbionts on host plant utilization by herbivorous insects.

    PubMed

    Hansen, Allison K; Moran, Nancy A

    2014-03-01

    Herbivory, defined as feeding on live plant tissues, is characteristic of highly successful and diverse groups of insects and represents an evolutionarily derived mode of feeding. Plants present various nutritional and defensive barriers against herbivory; nevertheless, insects have evolved a diverse array of mechanisms that enable them to feed and develop on live plant tissues. For decades, it has been suggested that insect-associated microbes may facilitate host plant use, and new molecular methodologies offer the possibility to elucidate such roles. Based on genomic data, specialized feeding on phloem and xylem sap is highly dependent on nutrient provisioning by intracellular symbionts, as exemplified by Buchnera in aphids, although it is unclear whether such symbionts play a substantive role in host plant specificity of their hosts. Microorganisms present in the gut or outside the insect body could provide more functions including digestion of plant polymers and detoxification of plant-produced toxins. However, the extent of such contributions to insect herbivory remains unclear. We propose that the potential functions of microbial symbionts in facilitating or restricting the use of host plants are constrained by their location (intracellular, gut or environmental), and by the fidelity of their associations with insect host lineages. Studies in the next decade, using molecular methods from environmental microbiology and genomics, will provide a more comprehensive picture of the role of microbial symbionts in insect herbivory.

  4. Multidimensional approaches for studying plant defence against insects: from ecology to omics and synthetic biology.

    PubMed

    Barah, Pankaj; Bones, Atle M

    2015-02-01

    The biggest challenge for modern biology is to integrate multidisciplinary approaches towards understanding the organizational and functional complexity of biological systems at different hierarchies, starting from the subcellular molecular mechanisms (microscopic) to the functional interactions of ecological communities (macroscopic). The plant-insect interaction is a good model for this purpose with the availability of an enormous amount of information at the molecular and the ecosystem levels. Changing global climatic conditions are abruptly resetting plant-insect interactions. Integration of discretely located heterogeneous information from the ecosystem to genes and pathways will be an advantage to understand the complexity of plant-insect interactions. This review will present the recent developments in omics-based high-throughput experimental approaches, with particular emphasis on studying plant defence responses against insect attack. The review highlights the importance of using integrative systems approaches to study plant-insect interactions from the macroscopic to the microscopic level. We analyse the current efforts in generating, integrating and modelling multiomics data to understand plant-insect interaction at a systems level. As a future prospect, we highlight the growing interest in utilizing the synthetic biology platform for engineering insect-resistant plants.

  5. The insect SNMP gene family.

    PubMed

    Vogt, Richard G; Miller, Natalie E; Litvack, Rachel; Fandino, Richard A; Sparks, Jackson; Staples, Jon; Friedman, Robert; Dickens, Joseph C

    2009-07-01

    SNMPs are membrane proteins observed to associate with chemosensory neurons in insects; in Drosophila melanogaster, SNMP1 has been shown to be essential for the detection of the pheromone cis-vaccenyl acetate (CVA). SNMPs are one of three insect gene clades related to the human fatty acid transporter CD36. We previously characterized the CD36 gene family in 4 insect Orders that effectively cover the Holometabola, or some 80% of known insect species and the 300 million years of evolution since this lineage emerged: Lepidoptera (e.g. Bombyx mori, Antheraea polyphemus, Manduca sexta, Heliothis virescens, Helicoverpa assulta, Helicoverpa armigera, Mamestra brassicae); Diptera (D. melanogaster, Drosophila pseudoobscura, Aedes aegypti, Anopheles gambiae, Culex pipiens quinquefasciatus); Hymenoptera (Apis mellifera); and Coleoptera (Tribolium castaneum). This previous study suggested a complex topography within the SNMP clade including a strongly supported SNMP1 sub-clade plus additional SNMP genes. To further resolve the SNMP clade here, we used cDNA sequences of SNMP1 and SNMP2 from various Lepidoptera species, D. melanogaster and Ae. aegypti, as well as BAC derived genomic sequences from Ae. aegypti as models for proposing corrected sequences of orthologues in the D. pseudoobscura and An. gambiae genomes, and for identifying orthologues in the B. mori and C. pipiens q. genomes. We then used these sequences to analyze the SNMP clade of the insect CD36 gene family, supporting the existence of two well supported sub-clades, SNMP1 and SNMP2, throughout the dipteran and lepidopteran lineages, and plausibly throughout the Holometabola and across a broad evolutionary time scale. We present indirect evidence based on evolutionary selection (dN/dS) that the dipteran SNMPs are expressed as functional proteins. We observed expansions of the SNMP1 sub-clade in C. pipiens q. and T. castaneum suggesting that the SNMP1s may have an expanded functional role in these species.

  6. Buckling failures in insect exoskeletons.

    PubMed

    Parle, Eoin; Herbaj, Simona; Sheils, Fiona; Larmon, Hannah; Taylor, David

    2015-12-17

    Thin walled tubes are often used for load-bearing structures, in nature and in engineering, because they offer good resistance to bending and torsion at relatively low weight. However, when loaded in bending they are prone to failure by buckling. It is difficult to predict the loading conditions which cause buckling, especially for tubes whose cross sections are not simple shapes. Insights into buckling prevention might be gained by studying this phenomenon in the exoskeletons of insects and other arthropods. We investigated the leg segments (tibiae) of five different insects: the locust (Schistocerca gergaria), American cockroach (Periplaneta americana), death's head cockroach (Blaberus discoidalis), stick insect (Parapachymorpha zomproi) and bumblebee (Bombus terrestris audax). These were tested to failure in cantilever bending and modelled using finite element analysis (FEA). The tibiae of the locust and the cockroaches were found to be approximately circular in shape. Their buckling loads were well predicted by linear elastic FEA, and also by one of the analytical solutions available in the literature for elastic buckling. The legs of the stick insect are also circular in cross section but have several prominent longitudinal ridges. We hypothesised that these ridges might protect the legs against buckling but we found that this was not the case: the loads necessary for elastic buckling were not reached in practice because yield occurred in the material, causing plastic buckling. The legs of bees have a non-circular cross section due to a pollen-carrying feature (the corbicula). We found that this did not significantly affect their resistance to buckling. Our results imply that buckling is the dominant failure mode in the tibia of insects; it likely to be a significant consideration for other arthropods and any organisms with stiff exoskeletons. The interactions displayed here between material properties and cross sectional geometry may provide insights for the

  7. Using new technology and insect behavior in novel terrestrial and flying insect traps

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Insect traps are commonly used for both population sampling and insect control, the former as part of an integrated pest management (IPM) program. We developed traps for two insects, one as part of a pesticide based IPM system and the other for population control. Our IPM trap is for crawling insect...

  8. 21 CFR 1250.95 - Insect control.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    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 maintained free of infestation by flies, mosquitoes, fleas, lice, and other insects known to be vectors...

  9. Radar, Insect Population Ecology, and Pest Management

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vaughn, C. R. (Editor); Wolf, W. (Editor); Klassen, W. (Editor)

    1979-01-01

    Discussions included: (1) the potential role of radar in insect ecology studies and pest management; (2) the potential role of radar in correlating atmospheric phenomena with insect movement; (3) the present and future radar systems; (4) program objectives required to adapt radar to insect ecology studies and pest management; and (5) the specific action items to achieve the objectives.

  10. 21 CFR 1250.95 - Insect control.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Insect control. 1250.95 Section 1250.95 Food and... SANITATION Sanitation Facilities and Conditions on Vessels § 1250.95 Insect control. Vessels shall be maintained free of infestation by flies, mosquitoes, fleas, lice, and other insects known to be vectors...

  11. Insect biomass to enhance food production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Studies have established that insects are as good source of protein as conventional animal food (between 15 and 67% dry weight content). Insects are a good source of essential amino acids and essential fatty acids. Insect fat has a higher content of polyunsaturated (essential) fatty acids and a lowe...

  12. Insect Control (1): Use of Pheromones

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Marx, Jean L.

    1973-01-01

    Discusses current research relating to the use of pheromones as a means of controlling insect pests. These chemicals, which are secreted by insects to affect the behavior of other individuals of the same species, may be used to eliminate pests without destroying their predators and other beneficial insects. (JR)

  13. Applications of acoustics in insect pest management

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Acoustic technology has been applied for many years in studies of insect communication and in the monitoring of calling-insect population levels, geographic distributions, and diversity, as well as in the detection of cryptic insects in soil, wood, container crops, and stored products. Acoustic devi...

  14. Insect stereopsis demonstrated using a 3D insect cinema.

    PubMed

    Nityananda, Vivek; Tarawneh, Ghaith; Rosner, Ronny; Nicolas, Judith; Crichton, Stuart; Read, Jenny

    2016-01-07

    Stereopsis - 3D vision - has become widely used as a model of perception. However, all our knowledge of possible underlying mechanisms comes almost exclusively from vertebrates. While stereopsis has been demonstrated for one invertebrate, the praying mantis, a lack of techniques to probe invertebrate stereopsis has prevented any further progress for three decades. We therefore developed a stereoscopic display system for insects, using miniature 3D glasses to present separate images to each eye, and tested our ability to deliver stereoscopic illusions to praying mantises. We find that while filtering by circular polarization failed due to excessive crosstalk, "anaglyph" filtering by spectral content clearly succeeded in giving the mantis the illusion of 3D depth. We thus definitively demonstrate stereopsis in mantises and also demonstrate that the anaglyph technique can be effectively used to deliver virtual 3D stimuli to insects. This method opens up broad avenues of research into the parallel evolution of stereoscopic computations and possible new algorithms for depth perception.

  15. An ancient tripartite symbiosis of plants, ants and scale insects.

    PubMed

    Ueda, Shouhei; Quek, Swee-Peck; Itioka, Takao; Inamori, Keita; Sato, Yumiko; Murase, Kaori; Itino, Takao

    2008-10-22

    In the Asian tropics, a conspicuous radiation of Macaranga plants is inhabited by obligately associated Crematogaster ants tending Coccus (Coccidae) scale insects, forming a tripartite symbiosis. Recent phylogenetic studies have shown that the plants and the ants have been codiversifying over the past 16-20 million years (Myr). The prevalence of coccoids in ant-plant mutualisms suggest that they play an important role in the evolution of ant-plant symbioses. To determine whether the scale insects were involved in the evolutionary origin of the mutualism between Macaranga and Crematogaster, we constructed a cytochrome oxidase I (COI) gene phylogeny of the scale insects collected from myrmecophytic Macaranga and estimated their time of origin based on a COI molecular clock. The minimum age of the associated Coccus was estimated to be half that of the ants, at 7-9Myr, suggesting that they were latecomers in the evolutionary history of the symbiosis. Crematogaster mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) lineages did not exhibit specificity towards Coccus mtDNA lineages, and the latter was not found to be specific towards Macaranga taxa, suggesting that patterns of associations in the scale insects are dictated by opportunity rather than by specialized adaptations to host plant traits.

  16. Comparison of RNA isolation methods from insect larvae.

    PubMed

    Ridgeway, J A; Timm, A E

    2014-01-01

    Isolating RNA from insects is becoming increasingly important in molecular entomology. Four methods including three commercial kits RNeasy Mini Kit (Qiagen), SV Total RNA isolation system (Promega), TRIzol reagent (Invitrogen), and a cetyl trimethylammonium bromide (CTAB)-based method were compared regarding their ability to isolate RNA from whole-body larvae of Thaumatotibia leucotreta (Meyrick), Thanatophilus micans (F.), Plutella xylostella (L.), and Tenebrio molitor (L.). A difference was observed among the four methods regarding RNA quality but not quantity. However, RNA quality and quantity obtained was not dependent on the insect species. The CTAB-based method produced low-quality RNA and the Trizol reagent produced partially degraded RNA, whereas the RNeasy Mini Kit and SV Total RNA isolation system produced RNA of consistently high quality. However, after reverse transcription to cDNA, RNA produced using all four extraction methods could be used to successfully amplify a 708 bp fragment of the cytochrome oxidase I gene. Of the four methods, the SV Total RNA isolation system showed the least amount of DNA contamination with the highest RNA integrity number and is thus recommended for stringent applications where high-quality RNA is required. This is the first comparison of RNA isolation methods among different insect species and the first to compare RNA isolation methods in insects in the last 20 years.

  17. Diverse set of Turing nanopatterns coat corneae across insect lineages

    PubMed Central

    Blagodatski, Artem; Sergeev, Anton; Kryuchkov, Mikhail; Lopatina, Yuliya; Katanaev, Vladimir L.

    2015-01-01

    Nipple-like nanostructures covering the corneal surfaces of moths, butterflies, and Drosophila have been studied by electron and atomic force microscopy, and their antireflective properties have been described. In contrast, corneal nanostructures of the majority of other insect orders have either been unexamined or examined by methods that did not allow precise morphological characterization. Here we provide a comprehensive analysis of corneal surfaces in 23 insect orders, revealing a rich diversity of insect corneal nanocoatings. These nanocoatings are categorized into four major morphological patterns and various transitions between them, many, to our knowledge, never described before. Remarkably, this unexpectedly diverse range of the corneal nanostructures replicates the complete set of Turing patterns, thus likely being a result of processes similar to those modeled by Alan Turing in his famous reaction−diffusion system. These findings reveal a beautiful diversity of insect corneal nanostructures and shed light on their molecular origin and evolutionary diversification. They may also be the first-ever biological example of Turing nanopatterns. PMID:26307762

  18. Insect diversity in the fossil record

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Labandeira, C. C.; Sepkoski, J. J. Jr; Sepkoski JJ, J. r. (Principal Investigator)

    1993-01-01

    Insects possess a surprisingly extensive fossil record. Compilation of the geochronologic ranges of insect families demonstrates that their diversity exceeds that of preserved vertebrate tetrapods through 91 percent of their evolutionary history. The great diversity of insects was achieved not by high origination rates but rather by low extinction rates comparable to the low rates of slowly evolving marine invertebrate groups. The great radiation of modern insects began 245 million years ago and was not accelerated by the expansion of angiosperms during the Cretaceous period. The basic trophic machinery of insects was in place nearly 100 million years before angiosperms appeared in the fossil record.

  19. How and why do insects migrate?

    PubMed

    Holland, Richard A; Wikelski, Martin; Wilcove, David S

    2006-08-11

    Countless numbers of insects migrate within and between continents every year, and yet we know very little about the ultimate reasons and proximate mechanisms that would explain these mass movements. Here we suggest that perhaps the most important reason for insects to migrate is to hedge their reproductive bets. By spreading their breeding efforts in space and time, insects distribute their offspring over a range of environmental conditions. We show how the study of individual long-distance movements of insects may contribute to a better understanding of migration. In the future, advances in tracking methods may enable the global surveillance of large insects such as desert locusts.

  20. Fungal allelochemicals in insect pest management.

    PubMed

    Holighaus, Gerrit; Rohlfs, Marko

    2016-07-01

    Interactions between insects and fungi are widespread, and important mediators of these interactions are fungal chemicals that can therefore be considered as allelochemicals. Numerous studies suggest that fungal chemicals can affect insects in many different ways. Here, we apply the terminology established by insect-plant ecologists for categorizing the effect of fungal allelochemicals on insects and for evaluating the application potential of these chemicals in insect pest management. Our literature survey shows that fungal volatile and non-volatile chemicals have an enormous potential to influence insect behavior and fitness. Many of them still remain to be discovered, but some recent examples of repellents and toxins could open up new ways for developing safe insect control strategies. However, we also identified shortcomings in our understanding of the chemical ecology of insect-fungus interactions and the way they have been investigated. In particular, the mode-of-action of fungal allelochemicals has often not been appropriately designated or examined, and the way in which induction by insects affects fungal chemical diversity is poorly understood. This review should raise awareness that in-depth ecological studies of insect-fungus interactions can reveal novel allelochemicals of particular benefit for the development of innovative insect pest management strategies.

  1. Footprints, Fireflies and Flight: Primary Science Magic.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fine, Edith H.; Josephson, Judith P.

    1984-01-01

    Provides primary grade level science activities that focus on insects, tracks and trails, water, and flight. For each topic, six major ideas plus related activities and suggestions about resources are given. (RH)

  2. 75 FR 47592 - Final Test Guideline; Product Performance of Skin-applied Insect Repellents of Insect and Other...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-08-06

    ... AGENCY Final Test Guideline; Product Performance of Skin-applied Insect Repellents of Insect and Other... Product Performance of Skin-applied Insect Repellents of Insect and Other Arthropods Test Guidelines... ``Product Performance of Skin-applied Insect Repellents of Insects and Other Arthropods'' (OPPTS...

  3. Corpse Management in Social Insects

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Qian; Zhou, Xuguo

    2013-01-01

    Undertaking behavior is an essential adaptation to social life that is critical for colony hygiene in enclosed nests. Social insects dispose of dead individuals in various fashions to prevent further contact between corpses and living members in a colony. Focusing on three groups of eusocial insects (bees, ants, and termites) in two phylogenetically distant orders (Hymenoptera and Isoptera), we review mechanisms of death recognition, convergent and divergent behavioral responses toward dead individuals, and undertaking task allocation from the perspective of division of labor. Distinctly different solutions (e.g., corpse removal, burial and cannibalism) have evolved, independently, in the holometabolous hymenopterans and hemimetabolous isopterans toward the same problem of corpse management. In addition, issues which can lead to a better understanding of the roles that undertaking behavior has played in the evolution of eusociality are discussed. PMID:23569436

  4. Corpse management in social insects.

    PubMed

    Sun, Qian; Zhou, Xuguo

    2013-01-01

    Undertaking behavior is an essential adaptation to social life that is critical for colony hygiene in enclosed nests. Social insects dispose of dead individuals in various fashions to prevent further contact between corpses and living members in a colony. Focusing on three groups of eusocial insects (bees, ants, and termites) in two phylogenetically distant orders (Hymenoptera and Isoptera), we review mechanisms of death recognition, convergent and divergent behavioral responses toward dead individuals, and undertaking task allocation from the perspective of division of labor. Distinctly different solutions (e.g., corpse removal, burial and cannibalism) have evolved, independently, in the holometabolous hymenopterans and hemimetabolous isopterans toward the same problem of corpse management. In addition, issues which can lead to a better understanding of the roles that undertaking behavior has played in the evolution of eusociality are discussed.

  5. Immunity in a Social Insect

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rosengaus, Rebeca B.; Traniello, James F. A.; Chen, Tammy; Brown, Julie J.; Karp, Richard D.

    Although pathogens appear to have exerted significant selective pressure on various aspects of sociality, mechanisms of disease resistance in the social insects are poorly understood. We report here on an immune response to infection by the dampwood termite, Zootermopsis angusticollis. Nymphs immunized with an injection of 7.6×107, 7.6×105, or 7.6×104 cells/ml glutaraldehyde-killed solution of the bacterium Pseudomonas aeruginosa had significantly higher survivorship than controls following a challenge with a lethal concentration of active bacteria. Similarly, nymphs exposed to a 9×10-1 spores/ml suspension of the fungus Metarhizium anisopliae had higher survivorship than controls after a challenge with a lethal concentration of spores. Prior exposure to a pathogen thus conferred upon termites a degree of protection during a subsequent encounter with the same pathogen. This represents the first demonstration of immune function in vivo in a social insect.

  6. Histone acetylation in insect chromosomes.

    PubMed

    Allfrey, V G; Pogo, B G; Littau, V C; Gershey, E L; Mirsky, A E

    1968-01-19

    Acetylation of histones takes place along the salivary gland chromosomes of Chironomus thummi when RNA synthesis is active. It can be observed but not measured quantitatively by autoradiography of chromosome squashes. The "fixatives" commonly used in preparing squashes of insect chromosomes preferentially extract the highly acetylated "arginine-rich" histone fractions; the use of such fixatives may explain the reported absence of histone acetylation in Drosophila melanogaster.

  7. Benzoquinolinediones: activity as insect teratogens

    SciTech Connect

    Walton, B.T.; Ho, C.H.; Ma, C.Y.; O'Neill, E.G.; Kao, G.L.

    1983-10-28

    Morphological abnormalities including extra compound eyes, extra heads, and distally duplicated legs were generated in cricket embryos by treating eggs with single doses of either benz(g)isoquinoline-5,10-dione or benzo(h)quinoline-5,6-dione. Slight structural modifications of the molecules resulted in a loss of teratogenic activity, although embryotoxicity occurred. These potent insect teratogens can be used for analysis of developmental events during embryogenesis. 13 references, 4 figures, 1 table.

  8. Isotope Labeling in Insect Cells

    PubMed Central

    Saxena, Krishna; Dutta, Arpana; Klein-Seetharaman, Judith

    2011-01-01

    Recent years have seen remarkable progress in applying nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy to proteins that have traditionally been difficult to study due to issues with folding, posttranslational modification, and expression levels or combinations thereof. In particular, insect cells have proved useful in allowing large quantities of isotope-labeled, functional proteins to be obtained and purified to homogeneity, allowing study of their structures and dynamics by using NMR. Here, we provide protocols that have proven successful in such endeavors. PMID:22167667

  9. Seasonal adaptations in arctic insects.

    PubMed

    Danks, Hugh V

    2004-04-01

    Many insect species live in the arctic and show a wide range of adaptations to its extreme severity and seasonality. Long, cold winters are met, for example, by cold hardiness and choice of protected sites. Cold hardiness includes both widespread tolerance to freezing and extreme supercooling ability, as well as unusual responses in a few species, such as lack of typical cryoprotectants. Adaptations to short, cool summers include activity at low temperatures, selection of warm habitats and microhabitats, melanism and hairiness coupled with basking behaviour, and prolonged or abbreviated life cycles. Diapause ensures that many species emerge early in summer, with brief synchronized reproduction that maximizes the time for offspring development before winter returns. Some species overwinter in sites that thaw earliest in spring, even if they are relatively exposed in winter. Other adaptations respond to year-to-year variability: for example, prolonged diapause can provide insurance against unsuitable summers. All of these adaptations are co-ordinated. For example, cold hardiness relies on physiological and biochemical adaptations but also on habitat choice and timing. Because the adaptations are complex, predicted climatic warming probably will have unexpected effects. In particular, an increase in temperature that increases summer cloud when sea ice melts would likely reduce temperatures for insect development and activity, because sunshine provides critical warmth to insects and their microhabitats. Changes in moisture will also be important. Moreover, responses differ among species, depending especially on their microhabitats. The complexity of the responses of insects to arctic conditions reinforces the need for research that is sufficiently detailed.

  10. The Experimental Teaching Reform in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology for Undergraduate Students in Peking University Health Science Center

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yang, Xiaohan; Sun, Luyang; Zhao, Ying; Yi, Xia; Zhu, Bin; Wang, Pu; Lin, Hong; Ni, Juhua

    2015-01-01

    Since 2010, second-year undergraduate students of an eight-year training program leading to a Doctor of Medicine degree or Doctor of Philosophy degree in Peking University Health Science Center (PKUHSC) have been required to enter the "Innovative talent training project." During that time, the students joined a research lab and…

  11. Foraging in the dark - chemically mediated host plant location by belowground insect herbivores.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Scott N; Nielsen, Uffe N

    2012-06-01

    Root-feeding insects are key components in many terrestrial ecosystems. Like shoot-feeding insect herbivores, they exploit a range of chemical cues to locate host plants. Respiratory emissions of carbon dioxide (CO(2)) from the roots is widely reported as the main attractant, however, there is conflicting evidence about its exact role. CO(2) may act as a 'search trigger' causing insects to search more intensively for more host specific signals, or the plant may 'mask' CO(2) emissions with other root volatiles thus avoiding detection. At least 74 other compounds elicit behavioral responses in root-feeding insects, with the majority (>80 %) causing attraction. Low molecular weight compounds (e.g., alcohols, esters, and aldehydes) underpin attraction, whereas hydrocarbons tend to have repellent properties. A range of compounds act as phagostimulants (e.g., sugars) once insects feed on roots, whereas secondary metabolites often deter feeding. In contrast, some secondary metabolites usually regarded as plant defenses (e.g., dihydroxy-7-methoxy-1,4-benzoxazin-3-one (DIMBOA)), can be exploited by some root-feeding insects for host location. Insects share several host location cues with plant parasitic nematodes (CO(2), DIMBOA, glutamic acid), but some compounds (e.g., cucurbitacin A) repel nematodes while acting as phagostimulants to insects. Moreover, insect and nematode herbivory can induce exudation of compounds that may be mutually beneficial, suggesting potentially significant interactions between the two groups of herbivores. While a range of plant-derived chemicals can affect the behavior of root-feeding insects, little attempt has been made to exploit these in pest management, though this may become a more viable option with diminishing control options.

  12. A natural polymorphism alters odour and DEET sensitivity in an insect odorant receptor.

    PubMed

    Pellegrino, Maurizio; Steinbach, Nicole; Stensmyr, Marcus C; Hansson, Bill S; Vosshall, Leslie B

    2011-09-21

    Blood-feeding insects such as mosquitoes are efficient vectors of human infectious diseases because they are strongly attracted by body heat, carbon dioxide and odours produced by their vertebrate hosts. Insect repellents containing DEET (N,N-diethyl-meta-toluamide) are highly effective, but the mechanism by which this chemical wards off biting insects remains controversial despite decades of investigation. DEET seems to act both at close range as a contact chemorepellent, by affecting insect gustatory receptors, and at long range, by affecting the olfactory system. Two opposing mechanisms for the observed behavioural effects of DEET in the gas phase have been proposed: that DEET interferes with the olfactory system to block host odour recognition and that DEET actively repels insects by activating olfactory neurons that elicit avoidance behaviour. Here we show that DEET functions as a modulator of the odour-gated ion channel formed by the insect odorant receptor complex. The functional insect odorant receptor complex consists of a common co-receptor, ORCO (ref. 15) (formerly called OR83B; ref. 16), and one or more variable odorant receptor subunits that confer odour selectivity. DEET acts on this complex to potentiate or inhibit odour-evoked activity or to inhibit odour-evoked suppression of spontaneous activity. This modulation depends on the specific odorant receptor and the concentration and identity of the odour ligand. We identify a single amino-acid polymorphism in the second transmembrane domain of receptor OR59B in a Drosophila melanogaster strain from Brazil that renders OR59B insensitive to inhibition by the odour ligand and modulation by DEET. Our data indicate that natural variation can modify the sensitivity of an odour-specific insect odorant receptor to odour ligands and DEET. Furthermore, they support the hypothesis that DEET acts as a molecular 'confusant' that scrambles the insect odour code, and provide a compelling explanation for the broad

  13. Double strand RNA delivery system for plant-sap-feeding insects.

    PubMed

    Ghosh, Saikat Kumar B; Hunter, Wayne B; Park, Alexis L; Gundersen-Rindal, Dawn E

    2017-01-01

    Double-stranded RNA (dsRNA)-mediated gene silencing, also known as RNA interference (RNAi), has been a breakthrough technology for functional genomic studies and represents a potential tool for the management of insect pests. Since the inception of RNAi numerous studies documented successful introduction of exogenously synthesized dsRNA or siRNA into an organism triggering highly efficient gene silencing through the degradation of endogenous RNA homologous to the presented siRNA. Managing hemipteran insect pests, especially Halyomorpha halys (Stål) (Heteroptera: Pentatomidae), the brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB), is critical to food productivity. BMSB was recently introduced into North America where it is both an invasive agricultural pest of high value specialty, row, and staple crops, as well as an indoor nuisance pest. RNAi technology may serve as a viable tool to manage this voracious pest, but delivery of dsRNA to piercing-sucking insects has posed a tremendous challenge. Effective and practical use of RNAi as molecular biopesticides for biocontrol of insects like BMSB in the environment requires that dsRNAs be delivered in vivo through ingestion. Therefore, the key challenge for molecular biologists in developing insect-specific molecular biopesticides is to find effective and reliable methods for practical delivery of stable dsRNAs such as through oral ingestion. Here demonstrated is a reliable delivery system of effective insect-specific dsRNAs through oral feeding through a new delivery system to induce a significant decrease in expression of targeted genes such as JHAMT and Vg. This state-of-the-art delivery method overcomes environmental delivery challenges so that RNAi is induced through insect-specific dsRNAs orally delivered to hemipteran and other insect pests.

  14. Double strand RNA delivery system for plant-sap-feeding insects

    PubMed Central

    Ghosh, Saikat Kumar B.; Hunter, Wayne B.; Park, Alexis L.; Gundersen-Rindal, Dawn E.

    2017-01-01

    Double-stranded RNA (dsRNA)-mediated gene silencing, also known as RNA interference (RNAi), has been a breakthrough technology for functional genomic studies and represents a potential tool for the management of insect pests. Since the inception of RNAi numerous studies documented successful introduction of exogenously synthesized dsRNA or siRNA into an organism triggering highly efficient gene silencing through the degradation of endogenous RNA homologous to the presented siRNA. Managing hemipteran insect pests, especially Halyomorpha halys (Stål) (Heteroptera: Pentatomidae), the brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB), is critical to food productivity. BMSB was recently introduced into North America where it is both an invasive agricultural pest of high value specialty, row, and staple crops, as well as an indoor nuisance pest. RNAi technology may serve as a viable tool to manage this voracious pest, but delivery of dsRNA to piercing-sucking insects has posed a tremendous challenge. Effective and practical use of RNAi as molecular biopesticides for biocontrol of insects like BMSB in the environment requires that dsRNAs be delivered in vivo through ingestion. Therefore, the key challenge for molecular biologists in developing insect-specific molecular biopesticides is to find effective and reliable methods for practical delivery of stable dsRNAs such as through oral ingestion. Here demonstrated is a reliable delivery system of effective insect-specific dsRNAs through oral feeding through a new delivery system to induce a significant decrease in expression of targeted genes such as JHAMT and Vg. This state-of-the-art delivery method overcomes environmental delivery challenges so that RNAi is induced through insect-specific dsRNAs orally delivered to hemipteran and other insect pests. PMID:28182760

  15. Circadian organization in hemimetabolous insects.

    PubMed

    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.

  16. THE CHEMISTRY OF INSECT HEMOLYMPH

    PubMed Central

    Wyatt, G. R.; Kalf, G. F.

    1957-01-01

    α,α-Trehalose, a sugar previously regarded as a product characteristic of certain lower plants, has been identified as a major blood sugar of insects. Trehalose has been isolated in pure form from the blood of pupae of the silk moth, Telea polyphemus, and has been recognized chromatographically in all the insects examined, which comprise 10 species belonging to 5 different orders. Trehalose has been determined quantitatively with anthrone after either chromatographic separation or chemical degradation of other sugars. In larvae and pupae of 4 species of Lepidoptera it ranges from 0.2 to 1.5 gm. per 100 ml. of blood and makes up over 90 per cent of the blood sugar; in larvae of a sawfly, about 80 per cent of the blood sugar is trehalose. In Bombyx mori and Platysamia cecropia, the pupal blood trehalose level is about half that in the mature larva, suggesting utilization of trehalose for glycogen synthesis during pupation. Small amounts of glucose and apparent glycogen are also present in the plasma of these insects. In Bombyx larval plasma there is also 0.04 to 0.12 gm. per 100 ml. of glucose-6-phosphate and smaller amounts of an apparent ketose phosphate. PMID:13439163

  17. Safe Science: Be Protected!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Roy, Ken

    2006-01-01

    Science education is a changing landscape. Changes over the past ten years alone have been both evolutionary and revolutionary--Science Education Standards, new required assessments, science teacher certification issues, science teacher shortages and retirements, molecular approach to Biology, etc. These changes and issues range from…

  18. [What gene and chromosomes say about the origin and evolution of insects and other arthropods].

    PubMed

    Lukhtanov, V A; Kuznetsova, V G

    2010-09-01

    At the turn of the 21st century, the use of molecular and molecular cytogenetic methods led to revolutionary advances in systematics of insects and other arthropods. Analysis of nuclear and mitochondrial genes, as well as investigation of structural rearrangements in the mitochondrial chromosome convincingly supported the Pancrustacea hypothesis, according to which insects originated directly from crustaceans, whereas myriapods are not closely related to them. The presence of the specific telomeric motif TTAGG confirmed the monophyletic origin of arthropods (Arthropoda) and the assignment of tongue worms (Pentastomida) to this type. Several different types of telomeric sequences have been found within the class of insects. Investigation of the molecular organization of these sequences may shed light on the relationships between the orders Diptera, Siphonaptera, and Mecoptera and on the origin of such enigmatic groups as the orders Strepsiptera, Zoraptera and suborder Coleorrhyncha.

  19. Molecular dynamics in computational materials sciences: From the study of nanostructure formation to the design of fluorescent dyes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Irle, Stephan

    2016-12-01

    On overview is given over the use of approximate density functional theory as basis for performing direct molecular dynamics simulations on ground and excited states. In the case of nanostructure formation, we discuss the relationship between fullerene, nanotube, and graphene formation. In the case of fluorescent molecules, we elucidate the importance of excited state dynamics for fluorescent properties.

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

    PubMed

    Dhami, Manpreet K; Weir, Bevan S; Taylor, Michael W; Beggs, Jacqueline R

    2013-01-01

    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 closely associated

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

    PubMed

    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.

  2. Advances in the identification and characterization of olfactory receptors in insects.

    PubMed

    Montagné, Nicolas; de Fouchier, Arthur; Newcomb, Richard D; Jacquin-Joly, Emmanuelle

    2015-01-01

    Olfactory receptors (ORs) are the key elements of the molecular machinery responsible for the detection of odors in insects. Since their initial discovery in Drosophila melanogaster at the beginning of the twenty-first century, insect ORs have been the focus of intense research, both for fundamental knowledge of sensory systems and for their potential as novel targets for the development of products that could impact harmful behaviors of crop pests and disease vectors. In recent years, studies on insect ORs have entered the genomic era, with an ever-increasing number of OR genes being characterized every year through the sequencing of genomes and transcriptomes. With the upcoming release of genomic sequences from hundreds of insect species, the insect OR family could very well become the largest multigene family known. This extremely rapid identification of ORs in many insects is driving the necessity for the development of high-throughput technologies that will allow the identification of ligands for this unprecedented number of receptors. Moreover, such technologies will also be important for the development of agonists or antagonists that could be used in the fight against pest insects.

  3. Eusocial insects as emerging models for behavioural epigenetics.

    PubMed

    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.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  5. Insect chymotrypsins: chloromethyl ketone inactivation and substrate specificity relative to possible coevolutional adaptation of insects and plants.

    PubMed

    Lopes, Adriana R; Sato, Paloma M; Terra, Walter R

    2009-03-01

    Insect digestive chymotrypsins are present in a large variety of insect orders but their substrate specificity still remains unclear. Four insect chymotrypsins from 3 different insect orders (Dictyoptera, Coleoptera, and two Lepidoptera) were isolated using affinity chromatography. Enzymes presented molecular masses in the range of 20 to 31 kDa and pH optima in the range of 7.5 to 10.0. Kinetic characterization using different colorimetric and fluorescent substrates indicated that insect chymotrypsins differ from bovine chymotrypsin in their primary specificity toward small substrates (like N-benzoyl-L-Tyr p-nitroanilide) rather than on their preference for large substrates (exemplified by Succynil-Ala-Ala-Pro-Phe p-nitroanilide). Chloromethyl ketones (TPCK, N- alpha-tosyl-L-Phe chloromethyl ketone and Z-GGF-CK, N- carbobenzoxy-Gly-Gly-Phe-CK) inactivated all chymotrypsins tested. Inactivation rates follow apparent first-order kinetics with variable second order rates (TPCK, 42 to 130 M(-1) s(-1); Z-GGF-CK, 150 to 450 M(-1) s(-1)) that may be remarkably low for S. frugiperda chymotrypsin (TPCK, 6 M(-1) s(-1); Z-GGF-CK, 6.1 M(-1) s(-1)). Homology modelling and sequence alignment showed that in lepidopteran chymotrypsins, differences in the amino acid residues in the neighborhood of the catalytic His 57 may affect its pKa value. This is proposed as the cause of the decrease in His 57 reactivity toward chloromethyl ketones. Such amino acid replacement in the active site is proposed to be an adaptation to the presence of dietary ketones.

  6. Towards a Molecular Scale Understanding of Surface Chemistry and Photocatalysis on Metal Oxides: Surface Science Experiments and First Principles Theory

    SciTech Connect

    Diebold, Ulrike

    2015-01-29

    This project has provided an increased understanding of molecular processes and structure-activity relationships in photocatalytic systems. This could ultimately lead to guidelines on how to make TiO2-based photocatalytic systems more efficient. This directly relates to the Program’s mission to develop a mechanistic understanding of chemical reactions that pertain to environmental remediation and pollution control; energy production (photoelectrochemical and production of hydrogen); and novel materials synthesis.

  7. Individual versus collective cognition in social insects

    PubMed Central

    Feinerman, Ofer; Korman, Amos

    2017-01-01

    The concerted responses of eusocial insects to environmental stimuli are often referred to as collective cognition on 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 since individual insects are cognitively capable units that are often able to process information that is directly relevant at the level of the colony. Furthermore, involved communication patterns seem difficult to implement in a group of insects since these lack clear network structure. This review discusses links between the cognition of an individual insect and that of the colony. We provide examples for collective cognition whose sources span the full spectrum between amplification of individual insect cognition and emergent group-level processes. PMID:28057830

  8. Gimbals in the insect leg.

    PubMed

    Frantsevich, Leonid; Wang, Weiying

    2009-01-01

    We studied the common kinematic features of the coxa and trochanter in cursorial and raptorial legs, which are the short size of the podomers, predominantly monoaxial joints, and the approximate orthogonality of adjacent joint axes. The chain coxa-trochanter with its short elements and serial orthogonality of joint axes resembles the gimbals which combine versatility and tolerance to external perturbations. The geometry of legs was studied in 23 insect species of 12 orders. Insects with monoaxial joints were selected. The joint between the trochanter and the femur (TFJ) is defined either by two vestigial condyles or by a straight anterior hinge. Direction of the joint axes in the two basal podomers was assessed by 3D measurements or by goniometry in two planes. Length of the coxa is <15% (mostly <8%) of the total length of the cursorial leg, that of the trochanter <10%. Angles between the proximal and distal joint axes in the middle coxa range from 124 to 84 degrees (mean 97+/-14 degrees ), in the trochanter (in all legs studied) from 125 to 72 degrees (mean 90+/-13 degrees ). Vectors of the distal axis in the coxa are concentrated about the normal to the plane defined by the proximal axis and the midpoint between the distal condyles. These vectors in the trochanter lie at various angles to the normal; angles are correlated with the direction of the TFJ relative to the femur. Range of reduction about the TFJ is over 60 degrees in the foreleg of Ranatra linearis, Mantispa lobata and the hind leg in Carabus coriaceus (confirming observations of previous authors), 40-60 degrees in the foreleg of Vespa crabro and in the middle one in Ammophila campestris, 10-30 degrees in other studied specimens. The special role of the trochanter in autotomy and in active propulsion in some insect groups is discussed. The majority of insects possess small trochanters and slightly movable TFJs with the joint axis laying in the femur-tibia plane. We pose the hypothesis that the TFJ

  9. Feeling what an insect feels.

    PubMed

    Mohand Ousaid, Abdenbi; Millet, Guillaume; Haliyo, Sinan; Régnier, Stéphane; Hayward, Vincent

    2014-01-01

    We describe a manually operated, bilateral mechanical scaling instrument that simultaneously magnifies microscopic forces and reduces displacements with quasi-perfect transparency. In contrast with existing micro-teleoperation designs, the system is unconditionally stable for any scaling gains and interaction curves. In the present realization, the work done by the hand is more than a million times that done by a microscopic probe so that one can feel complete interaction cycles with water and compare them to what is felt when an insect leg interacts with a wet surface.

  10. Feeling What an Insect Feels

    PubMed Central

    Mohand Ousaid, Abdenbi; Millet, Guillaume; Haliyo, Sinan; Régnier, Stéphane; Hayward, Vincent

    2014-01-01

    We describe a manually operated, bilateral mechanical scaling instrument that simultaneously magnifies microscopic forces and reduces displacements with quasi-perfect transparency. In contrast with existing micro-teleoperation designs, the system is unconditionally stable for any scaling gains and interaction curves. In the present realization, the work done by the hand is more than a million times that done by a microscopic probe so that one can feel complete interaction cycles with water and compare them to what is felt when an insect leg interacts with a wet surface. PMID:25271636

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

    PubMed

    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

  12. Delayed insect access alters carrion decomposition and necrophagous insect community assembly

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Vertebrate carrion in terrestrial ecosystems is an unpredictable, ephemeral resource pulse that contributes to local biodiversity and nutrient transformation dynamics. We hypothesized that delayed insect access to carrion would demonstrate marked shifts in necrophagous insect community structure, t...

  13. A magnetic fluid microdevice using insect wings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sudo, S.; Tsuyuki, K.; Yano, T.; Takagi, K.

    2008-05-01

    A magnetic fluid microdevice using Diptera insect wings is proposed and constructed. The magnetic fluid device is composed of insect wings, a small permanent magnet, coil, and kerosene-based magnetic fluid. First, the structural properties of insect wings are studied through measurements of certain morphological parameters. Secondly, the novel type of microwind energy converter is constructed. Thirdly, the power generation characteristics of the magnetic fluid microdevice using insect wings are examined. It is found that the output power is roughly proportional to the cube of the airflow velocity.

  14. Carrion insects of the Egyptian western desert.

    PubMed

    Hegazi, E M; Shaaban, M A; Sabry, E

    1991-09-01

    A general survey was made on the zoosaprophagous insects and their associates in a natural ecosystem in the Egyptian western desert (80 km west of Alexandria, 12 km from the Mediterranean Sea shore). Two types of traps were used, one for flying insects and the other for soil-burrowing insects. Two types of decaying media were used as baits: the common freshwater fish (Tilapia zilii Gerv.) and the desert snail (Eremina desertorum). More than 30 insect species were trapped. The following orders and families were represented: Diptera (Calliphoridae, Sarcophagidae, Muscidae); Coleoptera (Histeridae, Scarabaeidae, Dermestidae, Tenebrionidae); Hymenoptera (Chalcididae, Pteromalidae, Eulophidae, Formicidae). Monthly totals of numbers trapped in each of these groups are presented.

  15. Even an old technique is suitable in the molecular world of science: the everted sac preparation turns 60 years old.

    PubMed

    Hamilton, Kirk L

    2014-04-15

    An old proverb states "necessity is the mother of invention." This certainly holds true in science as one pursues research questions. Experimental techniques have evolved as scientists have asked more specific research questions. Indeed, techniques such as the Ussing chamber, the perfused renal tubule preparation, patch-clamp, polymerase chain reaction, and site-directed mutagenesis have been developed over the past 60 years. However, sometimes, simple techniques may be useful and still very informative, and this certainly applies to intestinal physiology. Indeed, Gerald Wiseman and Thomas Hastings Wilson described the intestinal everted sac preparation some 60 years ago. Since then, this technique has been used for numerous research purposes including determining ion, amino acid, water and solute transport across the intestinal epithelium; and drug metabolism, absorption, and interactions in pharmaceutical/pharmacological research and even in education. This article provides a historical review of the development of the in vitro intestinal preparation that led to the everted sac preparation and its use in science.

  16. Purple acid phosphatase of the human macrophage and osteoclast. Characterization, molecular properties, and crystallization of the recombinant di-iron-oxo protein secreted by baculovirus-infected insect cells.

    PubMed

    Hayman, A R; Cox, T M

    1994-01-14

    The purple phosphatases catalyze hydrolysis of phosphate esters (optimum pH approximately 5) and are resistant to inhibition by dextro-rotatory tartrate; their distinctive color is due to Fe(III)-phenolate charge-transfer transitions at their active site. Expression of human purple phosphatase, designated type 5 acid phosphatase, is restricted to osteoclasts and other activated cells of monohistiocytic lineage, but its biological rôle in relation to bone resorption and phagocytosis is unknown. To characterize this enzyme further, we have engineered the human type 5 acid phosphatase into a baculovirus vector expression system that enabled milligram quantities of purple protein to be purified from medium containing Sf9 host cells. The phosphatase cDNA was transcribed as a single RNA species of 1.5 kilobases as in human tissues. Tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase activity reacting with uteroferrin antisera appeared in the culture medium, from which up to 8 mg/liter was purified by two-step cation-exchange chromatography at pH 8.0. Two isoforms of approximately 36 kDa were identified by SDS-polyacrylamide electrophoresis and were converted to a single species of apparent molecular size 34 kDa upon treatment with N-glycosidase F, indicating secreted glycoforms of a single polypeptide. Mass spectroscopy showed that the mean molecular mass of the active, secreted glycoprotein was 35849 Da. The recombinant enzyme (specific activity, 190 mumol p-nitrophenol/min/mg at 37 degrees C) contained 2 iron atoms/molecule and formed purple, monoclinic crystals. Exposure to the ferric chelator, 1,2-dimethyl-3-hydroxypyrid-4-one, rapidly inactivated the enzyme, which was not inhibited by alpha, alpha'-bipyridyl, a ferrous chelator. That ferric iron is essential for enzymatic catalysis, was further indicated by the synergistic effects of the reductant, dithiothreitol, and bipyridyl on phosphatase activity. The recombinant purple phosphatase catalyzed the peroxidation of 5

  17. Laser- based Insect Tracker (LIT)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mesquita, Leonardo; Sinha, Shiva; van Steveninck, Rob De Ruyter

    2011-03-01

    Insects are excellent model systems for studying learning and behavior, and the potential for genetic manipulation makes the fruitfly especially attractive. Many aspects of fruitfly behavior have been studied through video based tracking methods. However, to our knowledge no current system incorporates signals for behavioral conditioning in freely moving flies. We introduce a non-video based method that enables tracking of single insects over large volumes (> 8000cm3 at high spatial (<1mm) and temporal (<1ms) resolution for extended periods (>1 hour). The system uses a set of moveable mirrors that steer a tracking laser beam. Tracking is based on feedback from a four-quadrant sensor, sampling the beam after it bounces back from a retro reflector. Through the same mirrors we couple a high speed camera for flight dynamics analysis and an IR laser for aversive heat conditioning. Such heat shocks, combined with visual stimuli projected on a screen surrounding the flight arena, enable studies of learning and memory. By sampling the long term statistics of behavior, the system augments quantitative studies of behavioral phenotypes. Preliminary results of such studies will be presented.

  18. Smads and insect hemimetabolan metamorphosis.

    PubMed

    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.

  19. The use and manipulation of insect reproductive molecules for controlling insect populations

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The use and manipulation of insect reproductive molecules, and the genes that encode them, provides a variety of methods to control insect fertility and thus a means of population control for insect pests. Towards this end, we first studied the yolk polypeptide gene from the caribfly, Anastrepha su...

  20. Haemosporidian infections in the Tengmalm's Owl (Aegolius funereus) and potential insect vectors of their transmission.

    PubMed

    Synek, Petr; Popelková, Alena; Koubínová, Darina; Šťastný, Karel; Langrová, Iva; Votýpka, Jan; Munclinger, Pavel

    2016-01-01

    Sedentary bird species are suitable model hosts for identifying potential vectors of avian blood parasites. We studied haemosporidian infections in the Tengmalm's Owl (Aegolius funereus) in the Ore Mountains of the Czech Republic using molecular detection methods. Sex of owl nestlings was scored using molecular sexing based on fragment analysis of PCR-amplified CHD1 introns. Observed infection prevalences in nestlings and adult owls were 51 and 86 %, respectively. Five parasite lineages were detected. Most of the infections comprised the Leucocytozoon AEFUN02 and STOCC06 lineages that probably refer to distinct Leucocytozoon species. Other lineages were detected only sporadically. Mixed infections were found in 49 % of samples. The main factor affecting the probability of infection was host age. No effect of individual sex on infection probability was evidenced. The youngest infected nestling was 12 days old. High parasite prevalence in the Tengmalm's Owl nestlings suggests that insect vectors must enter nest boxes to transmit parasites before fledging. Hence, we placed sticky insect traps into modified nest boxes, collected potential insect vectors, and examined them for the presence of haemosporidian parasites using molecular detection. We trapped 201 insects which were determined as biting midges from the Culicoides genus and two black fly species, Simulium (Nevermannia) vernum and Simulium (Eusimulium) angustipes. Six haemosporidian lineages were detected in the potential insect vectors, among which the Leucocytozoon lineage BT2 was common to the Tengmalm's Owl and the trapped insects. However, we have not detected the most frequently encountered Tengmalm's Owl Leucocytozoon lineages AEFUN02 and STOCC06 in insects.

  1. The Developmental Control of Size in Insects

    PubMed Central

    Mirth, Christen; Shingleton, Alexander W.; Suzuki, Yuichiro; Callier, Viviane

    2014-01-01

    The mechanisms that control the sizes of a body and its many parts remain among the great puzzles in developmental biology. Why do animals grow to a species-specific body size, and how is the relative growth of their body parts controlled to so they grow to the right size, and in the correct proportion with body size, giving an animal its species-characteristic shape? Control of size must involve mechanisms that somehow assess some aspect of size and are upstream of mechanisms that regulate growth. These mechanisms are now beginning to be understood in the insects, in particular in Manduca sexta and Drosophila melanogaster. The control of size requires control of the rate of growth and control of the cessation of growth. Growth is controlled by genetic and environmental factors. Insulin and ecdysone, their receptors and intracellular signaling pathways are the principal genetic regulators of growth. The secretion of these growth hormones, in turn, is controlled by complex interactions of other endocrine and molecular mechanisms, by environmental factors such as nutrition and by the physiological mechanisms that sense body size. Although the general mechanisms of growth regulation appear to be widely shared, the mechanisms that regulate final size can be quite diverse. PMID:24902837

  2. Common features in diverse insect clocks.

    PubMed

    Numata, Hideharu; Miyazaki, Yosuke; Ikeno, Tomoko

    2015-01-01

    This review describes common features among diverse biological clocks in insects, including circadian, circatidal, circalunar/circasemilunar, and circannual clocks. These clocks control various behaviors, physiological functions, and developmental events, enabling adaptation to periodic environmental changes. Circadian clocks also function in time-compensation for celestial navigation and in the measurement of day or night length for photoperiodism. Phase response curves for such clocks reported thus far exhibit close similarities; specifically, the circannual clock in Anthrenus verbasci shows striking similarity to circadian clocks in its phase response. It is suggested that diverse biological clocks share physiological properties in their phase responses irrespective of period length. Molecular and physiological mechanisms are best understood for the optic-lobe and mid-brain circadian clocks, although there is no direct evidence that these clocks are involved in rhythmic phenomena other than circadian rhythms in daily events. Circadian clocks have also been localized in peripheral tissues, and research on their role in various rhythmic phenomena has been started. Although clock genes have been identified as controllers of circadian rhythms in daily events, some of these genes have also been shown to be involved in photoperiodism and possibly in time-compensated celestial navigation. In contrast, there is no experimental evidence indicating that any known clock gene is involved in biological clocks other than circadian clocks.

  3. Molecular Imaging in the College of Optical Sciences – An Overview of Two Decades of Instrumentation Development

    PubMed Central

    Furenlid, Lars R.; Barrett, Harrison H.; Barber, H. Bradford; Clarkson, Eric W.; Kupinski, Matthew A.; Liu, Zhonglin; Stevenson, Gail D.; Woolfenden, James M.

    2015-01-01

    During the past two decades, researchers at the University of Arizona’s Center for Gamma-Ray Imaging (CGRI) have explored a variety of approaches to gamma-ray detection, including scintillation cameras, solid-state detectors, and hybrids such as the intensified Quantum Imaging Device (iQID) configuration where a scintillator is followed by optical gain and a fast CCD or CMOS camera. We have combined these detectors with a variety of collimation schemes, including single and multiple pinholes, parallel-hole collimators, synthetic apertures, and anamorphic crossed slits, to build a large number of preclinical molecular-imaging systems that perform Single-Photon Emission Computed Tomography (SPECT), Positron Emission Tomography (PET), and X-Ray Computed Tomography (CT). In this paper, we discuss the themes and methods we have developed over the years to record and fully use the information content carried by every detected gamma-ray photon. PMID:26236069

  4. K--8 preservice teachers' conceptions about the identification of organisms as insects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schaffer, Linda Carol

    The study was conducted to identify K--8 preservice teachers' concepts about the identification of organisms as insects and the sources for their conceptions. A 35-item insect task was used to assess the students' abilities to classify organisms as insects and 14 follow up interviews were conducted to probe for more details concerning those concepts of the insect class and the perceived sources for them. Results indicated that these preservice teachers harbored a number of misconceptions about the identification of organisms as insects and held non-scientific conceptions about what constitutes the class Insecta. They cited school, family, prior experiences and books as the sources for their ideas. Most of them did not have an understanding of classification concepts in general. Correct scientific terminology was sometimes used, but incorrect definitions or understandings were often associated with them. They focused on visual cues and ignored scientific criteria. The results suggest that consideration must be given to the identification and modification of preservice teachers classification misconceptions before teaching about the concept. The participants thought that their school instruction about insects and other living organisms was scanty and that concepts related to animals were learned in a rote fashion. Science educators should rethink their instructional strategies when teaching classification concepts.

  5. Functional roles of neuropeptides in the insect central nervous system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nässel, D. R.

    With the completion of the Drosophila genome sequencing project we can begin to appreciate the extent of the complexity in the components involved in signal transfer and modulation in the nervous system of an animal with reasonably complex behavior. Of all the different classes of signaling substances utilized by the nervous system, the neuropeptides are the most diverse structurally and functionally. Thus peptidergic mechanisms of action in the central nervous system need to be analyzed in the context of the neuronal circuits in which they act and generalized traits cannot be established. By taking advantage of Drosophila molecular genetics and the presence of identifiable neurons, it has been possible to interfere with peptidergic signaling in small populations of central neurons and monitor the consequences on behavior. These studies and experiments on other insects with large identifiable neurons, permitting cellular analysis of signaling mechanisms, have outlined important principles for temporal and spatial action of neuropeptides in outputs of the circadian clock and in orchestrating molting behavior. Considering the large number of neuropeptides available in each insect species and their diverse distribution patterns, it is to be expected that different neuropeptides play roles in most aspects of insect physiology and behavior.

  6. What Do Elementary Students Know about Insects?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Barrow, Lloyd H.

    2002-01-01

    Presents an interview-based study of (n=56) elementary school students. Determines students' understanding about insect characteristics, life cycles, environmental conditions, and impact on humans. Suggests building units of instruction based on students' personal questions about insects. (Contains 16 references.) (Author/YDS)

  7. Scope and Basic Principles of Insect Pathology

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Insects are the dominant animals in the world with more than one million described species. The vast majority of insects are innocuous or beneficial to humans, but a small percentage are pests that require a significant amount of our time, effort and funds to reduce their negative effects on food pr...

  8. Insect vision: controlling actions through optic flow.

    PubMed

    Collett, Thomas S

    2002-09-17

    Insects depend upon optic flow to supply much of their information about the three-dimensional structure of the world. Many insects use translational flow to measure the distance of objects from themselves. A recent study has provided new insights into the way Drosophila use optic flow to pick out a close target to approach.

  9. Potential applications of insect symbionts in biotechnology.

    PubMed

    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.

  10. Permian insect wing from antarctic sentinel mountains.

    PubMed

    Tasch, P; Riek, E F

    1969-06-27

    A homopterous insect wing was found in micaceous graywacke from the Polarstar Formation, Sentinel Mountains. The unusual venation is reminiscent of family Stenoviciidae known from the Permian and Triassic of Eastern Australia and elsewhere. This first documented account of Paleozoic insects in Antarctica bears on drift questions.

  11. Testing mechanistic models of growth in insects.

    PubMed

    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.

  12. Estimating Aquatic Insect Populations. Introduction to Sampling.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    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);…

  13. Agricultural applications of insect ecological genomics

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agricultural entomology is poised to benefit from the application of ecological genomics, in particular the fields of biofuels generation and pest insect control. Metagenomic methods can characterize microbial communities of termites, wood-boring beetles and other insects, and transcriptomic approa...

  14. Applications of genome editing in insects

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Insect genome editing was first reported 1991 in Drosophila melanogaster but the technology used was not portable to other species. Not until the recent development of facile, engineered DNA endonuclease systems has gene editing become widely available to insect scientists. Most applications in inse...

  15. Secondary succession: insect-plant relationships

    SciTech Connect

    Brown, V.K.

    1984-12-01

    Botanists have dominated the study of secondary succession, and as a result, models and theories have focused on plants. Recent work, however, has revealed several complex relationships between plants and insects during succession, including adaptations of life-cycle strategies. Furthermore, insect herbivores play a key role in the course and rate of plant succession.

  16. Sustainable management of insect-resistant crops

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Crop genetically engineered to provide resistance to specific groups of insect pests have been adopted by millions of growers throughout the world. Here we document the effects of transgenic crops on pest population densities, beneficial insect densities and biological control services, insecticide ...

  17. 21 CFR 1250.95 - Insect control.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2014-04-01 2014-04-01 false Insect control. 1250.95 Section 1250.95 Food and Drugs FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (CONTINUED) REGULATIONS... maintained free of infestation by flies, mosquitoes, fleas, lice, and other insects known to be vectors...

  18. 21 CFR 1250.95 - Insect control.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2012-04-01 2012-04-01 false Insect control. 1250.95 Section 1250.95 Food and Drugs FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (CONTINUED) REGULATIONS... maintained free of infestation by flies, mosquitoes, fleas, lice, and other insects known to be vectors...

  19. 21 CFR 1250.95 - Insect control.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2013-04-01 2013-04-01 false Insect control. 1250.95 Section 1250.95 Food and Drugs FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (CONTINUED) REGULATIONS... maintained free of infestation by flies, mosquitoes, fleas, lice, and other insects known to be vectors...

  20. Genomics of Insect-Soybean Interactions

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The dissection of plant-insect interactions has lagged behind that of interactions between plants and other types of pests. Insect pests interact with plants in a variety of ways, ranging from piercing and sucking of phloem to consumption of leaves and other tissues. Hence, a wide range of genetic m...