Crowded locusts produce hatchlings vulnerable to fungal attack

A - Papers appearing in refereed journals

Miller, G. A., Pell, J. K. and Simpson, S. J. 2009. Crowded locusts produce hatchlings vulnerable to fungal attack. Biology Letters. 5 (6), pp. 845-848.

AuthorsMiller, G. A., Pell, J. K. and Simpson, S. J.

Transgenerational effects of parental experience on offspring immunity are well documented in the vertebrate literature (where antibodies play an obligatory role), but have only recently been described in invertebrates. We have assessed the impact of parental rearing density upon offspring disease resistance by challenging day-old locust hatchlings (Schistocerca gregaria) from either crowd- or solitary-reared parents with the fungal pathogen Metarhizium anisopliae var. acridum. When immersed in standardized conidia suspensions, hatchlings from gregarious parents suffered greater pathogen-induced mortality than hatchlings from solitary-reared parents. This observation contradicts the basic theory of positive density-dependent prophylaxis and demonstrates that crowding has a transgenerational influence upon locust disease

Year of Publication2009
JournalBiology Letters
Journal citation5 (6), pp. 845-848
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
Open accessPublished as non-open access
FunderDepartment of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council
Funder project or codeSEF
Arable crops ecosystems - habitat diversification, crop management and natural enemies for crop protection and biodiversity
Functional biodiversity: mechanisms by which plant and invertebrate communities function in the arable ecosystem
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online12 Aug 2009
Publication process dates
Accepted22 Jul 2009
Copyright licensePublisher copyright
PublisherRoyal Society Publishing

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