By investigating the interplay between pheromone signaling and behavior in fruit flies, researchers have begun to understand how an adult fly’s earlier experience as a young individual can influence its behavior towards other flies as an adult. In particular, the researchers found that pheromone signals in the context of experience with adult flies can influence how young flies will behave once they reach maturity. The work is reported by Jean-Francois Ferveur and colleagues at the Universite de Bourgogne, France, and the University of Manchester, United Kingdom.
When an adult male fruit fly encounters a young male fly, he will actively court the younger individual, sometimes becoming aggressive. These young males that have encountered older flies will go on to similarly dominate other adult males that had encountered only young flies--something in the early experience of the "dominant" flies makes them more aggressive. In the new work, researchers investigated exactly what it is about past experience of these flies that influences adult behavior. Clues caused the researchers to suspect that a key role was played by a chemical signal--a pheromone--carried by adult males during the early encounter.
To prove this, the researches used mutant flies that lack the normal adult pheromones, and they covered these pheromone-defective flies with a variety of other smells. The researchers were able to demonstrate that a male shows courtship dominance behavior over young males if he has been exposed to the smell of normal adult males during a critical period in his life--the first 24 hours. In fact, an encounter with a single adult male was sufficient to make males exhibit dominance behavior when they reached adulthood. The researchers found that, intriguingly, it was not enough for young males to smell these pheromones--the pheromones had to be carried by active adult males. The effect was so strong that males carried on exhibiting courtship dominance behavior until they were five days old.
Heidi Hardman | EurekAlert!
Researchers reveal new details on aged brain, Alzheimer's and dementia
21.11.2017 | Allen Institute
Nanoparticles help with malaria diagnosis – new rapid test in development
21.11.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Silicatforschung ISC
The WHO reports an estimated 429,000 malaria deaths each year. The disease mostly affects tropical and subtropical regions and in particular the African continent. The Fraunhofer Institute for Silicate Research ISC teamed up with the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME and the Institute of Tropical Medicine at the University of Tübingen for a new test method to detect malaria parasites in blood. The idea of the research project “NanoFRET” is to develop a highly sensitive and reliable rapid diagnostic test so that patient treatment can begin as early as possible.
Malaria is caused by parasites transmitted by mosquito bite. The most dangerous form of malaria is malaria tropica. Left untreated, it is fatal in most cases....
The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.
Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...
Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.
That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...
Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.
During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....
The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.
Future quantum computers will be able to solve problems where conventional computers fail today. We are still far away from any large-scale implementation,...
15.11.2017 | Event News
15.11.2017 | Event News
30.10.2017 | Event News
21.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
21.11.2017 | Materials Sciences
21.11.2017 | Health and Medicine