Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

The evolution and genomic basis of beetle diversity

19.11.2019

A team of 24 scientists from Germany (predominantly from the Zoological Research Museum Alexander Koenig - Leibniz Institute for Animal Biodiversity), Australia, China, and the USA have explored the phylogeny and evolution of beetles using genomic data of an unprecedented scale: 4,818 genes for 146 species, and 89 genes for 521 species representing all major lineages. One of the major findings was that certain herbivore beetles obtained genes of plant cell wall-degrading enzymes via horizontal gene transfers from bacteria and fungi, which enabled them to digest wood and plant leaves.

Since these groups are among the most diverse beetles representing nearly half of all living beetle species the authors of the study are convinced that these events were among the most important triggers for the successful evolution of beetles.


Plant cell wall-degrading enzymes appear to have been key to the Mesozoic diversification of herbivorous beetles. Remarkably this incorporation of genes occurred in two independent events.

These enabled efficient digestion of plant tissues, including lignocellulose in cell walls, facilitating the evolution of uniquely specialized plant-feeding habits, such as leaf mining and wood boring.

Furthermore, the phylogenomic analyses of the team resolved previously controversial beetle relationships and dated the origin of Coleoptera to the Carboniferous.

Beetle diversity thus appears to have resulted from multiple factors, including a low rate of lineage extinction over a long evolutionary history, codiversification with angiosperms, and adaptive radiations of specialized herbivorous beetles following convergent horizontal transfers of microbial genes encoding plant cell wall-degrading enzymes.

The results of this paper underscore the intimacy and complexity of the evolutionary relationships between insects, plants, and microorganisms and show how analyses of large-scale genomic data are revealing the evolution and genomic basis of insect biodiversity.

Source: Quelle: The evolution and genomic basis of beetle diversity. Authors
Duane D. McKenna, Seunggwan Shin, Dirk Ahrens, Michael Balke, Cristian Bezaa, Dave J. Clarke, Alexander Donath, Hermes E. Escalona, Frank Friedrich, Harald Letsch, Shanlin Liu, David Maddison, Christoph Mayer, Bernhard Misof, Peyton J. Murin, Oliver Niehuis, Ralph S. Peters, Lars Podsiadlowski, Hans Pohl, Erin D. Scully, Evgeny V. Yan, Xin Zhou, Adam Slipinski and Rolf G. Beutel.

www.pnas.org/cgi/doi/10.1073/pnas.1909655116

Wissenschaftliche Ansprechpartner:

Contact: Dr. Dirk Ahrens

Head oft Department Arthropoda
Head of Section
Curator
Coleoptera
Tel: +49 228 9122-286
Fax: +49 228 9122-212
Mail: d.ahrens@leibniz-zfmk.de

Originalpublikation:

www.pnas.org/cgi/doi/10.1073/pnas.1909655116

Sabine Heine | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft
Further information:
http://www.zfmk.de

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht X-ray scattering shines light on protein folding
10.07.2020 | The Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST)

nachricht Surprisingly many peculiar long introns found in brain genes
10.07.2020 | Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: The spin state story: Observation of the quantum spin liquid state in novel material

New insight into the spin behavior in an exotic state of matter puts us closer to next-generation spintronic devices

Aside from the deep understanding of the natural world that quantum physics theory offers, scientists worldwide are working tirelessly to bring forth a...

Im Focus: Excitation of robust materials

Kiel physics team observed extremely fast electronic changes in real time in a special material class

In physics, they are currently the subject of intensive research; in electronics, they could enable completely new functions. So-called topological materials...

Im Focus: Electrons in the fast lane

Solar cells based on perovskite compounds could soon make electricity generation from sunlight even more efficient and cheaper. The laboratory efficiency of these perovskite solar cells already exceeds that of the well-known silicon solar cells. An international team led by Stefan Weber from the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research (MPI-P) in Mainz has found microscopic structures in perovskite crystals that can guide the charge transport in the solar cell. Clever alignment of these "electron highways" could make perovskite solar cells even more powerful.

Solar cells convert sunlight into electricity. During this process, the electrons of the material inside the cell absorb the energy of the light....

Im Focus: The lightest electromagnetic shielding material in the world

Empa researchers have succeeded in applying aerogels to microelectronics: Aerogels based on cellulose nanofibers can effectively shield electromagnetic radiation over a wide frequency range – and they are unrivalled in terms of weight.

Electric motors and electronic devices generate electromagnetic fields that sometimes have to be shielded in order not to affect neighboring electronic...

Im Focus: Gentle wall contact – the right scenario for a fusion power plant

Quasi-continuous power exhaust developed as a wall-friendly method on ASDEX Upgrade

A promising operating mode for the plasma of a future power plant has been developed at the ASDEX Upgrade fusion device at Max Planck Institute for Plasma...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Contact Tracing Apps against COVID-19: German National Academy Leopoldina hosts international virtual panel discussion

07.07.2020 | Event News

International conference QuApps shows status quo of quantum technology

02.07.2020 | Event News

Dresden Nexus Conference 2020: Same Time, Virtual Format, Registration Opened

19.05.2020 | Event News

 
Latest News

X-ray scattering shines light on protein folding

10.07.2020 | Life Sciences

Looking at linkers helps to join the dots

10.07.2020 | Materials Sciences

Surprisingly many peculiar long introns found in brain genes

10.07.2020 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>