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Beewolves protect their offspring with antibiotics
Date:2/28/2010

n prophylaxis" explains Johannes Kroiss, first author of the study.

With their work the researchers break new ground: "Astonishingly, little is known about the ecological importance of antibiotics in their natural environment. Supported by mass spectrometric imaging we are now able to better understand the natural role of antibiotic substances in the environment," says Ale Svato, leader of the mass spectrometry research group. The imaging techniques can help to provide important insights, especially into the exploration of symbiotic interactions. "We suppose that protective symbioses like the ones between beewolves and Streptomyces bacteria are much more common in the animal kingdom than previously assumed," says Martin Kaltenpoth, who heads a Max Planck Research Group on Insect-Bacteria Symbiosis since January. "An analysis of the substances involved not only contributes to the understanding of the evolution of such symbioses but could also lead to the discovery of interesting new drug candidates for human medicine." [JK/MK/AO]


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Contact: Martin Kaltenpoth
mkaltenpoth@ice.mpg.de
49-364-157-1800
Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology
Source:Eurekalert  

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Beewolves protect their offspring with antibiotics
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