Evolution of Immunity-Related Genes in Myrmeciine Ants

Schlüns, Helge, Crozier, Y. Ching, and Crozier, Ross H. (2010) Evolution of Immunity-Related Genes in Myrmeciine Ants. In: Abstracts for the XVI Congress of the International Union for the Study of Social Insect. p. 360. From: IUSSI 2010 XVI Congress of the International Union for the Study of Social Insect, 8-13 August 2010, Copenhagen, Denmark.

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Pathogenic microorganisms impose strong selection pressures on animal immune systems. Immunity-related genes include the most rapidly evolving genes in insect genomes. In social insects pathogens can be easily transmitted among nest mates. Thus they are very well suited for studying the evolution of immunity-related genes. Here, we study the molecular evolution of immunity-related genes in Australian hopper and bulldog ants (genus Myrmecia), and in the "dinosaur" ant Nothomyrmecia macrops. We cloned and sequenced several immunity-related genes whose products include pathogen recognition, signal transduction, and effector molecules. We discovered positive selection in some but not all immunity-related genes studied in myrmeciine ants applying codon-based comparative analyses. Moreover, we produced a molecular phylogeny facilitating insights into the evolution of phenotypic characters in myrmeciine ants.

Item ID: 17005
Item Type: Conference Item (Abstract / Summary)
ISBN: 978-87-92100-00-9
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Date Deposited: 10 May 2011 23:45
FoR Codes: 06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0603 Evolutionary Biology > 060304 Ethology and Sociobiology @ 100%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9608 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity > 960899 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity of Environments not elsewhere classified @ 100%
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