Navigation Links
Milkweed's evolutionary approach to caterpillars: Counter appetite with fast repair
Date:7/22/2008

The adage that your enemies know your weaknesses best is especially true in the case of plants and predators that have co-evolved: As the predators evolve new strategies for attack, plants counter with their own unique defenses.

Milkweed is the latest example of this response, according to Cornell research suggesting that plant may be shifting away from elaborate defenses against specialized caterpillars toward a more energy-efficient approach. Genetic analysis reveals an evolutionary trend for milkweed plants away from resisting predators to putting more effort into repairing themselves faster than caterpillars -- particularly the monarch butterfly caterpillar -- can eat them.

"An important question with co-evolution is where does it end?" said Anurag Agrawal, Cornell associate professor of ecology and evolutionary biology and lead author of a paper in the current issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. "One answer is when it becomes too costly. Some plants seem to have shifted away from resisting herbivory [plant eating] and have taken that same energy and used it to repair themselves."

The paper is important because it sheds light on key theories of co-evolution, claiming that pressure by foraging insects makes plants diversify as they evolve new defensive strategies and that such diversification follows trends in one direction or another, said Agrawal.

Milkweed species have evolved elaborate resistance strategies to fight off caterpillars that eat their leaves. These include hairs on their leaves, heart poisons called cardenolides in their tissues and milky-white toxic latex that pours from the plants' tubes. A caterpillar's bite into a milkweed leaf leads to a flood of latex that is "like getting a gallon of sticky paint thrown into your face," said Agrawal.

Some caterpillars, in turn, have adapted by shaving the leaf, cutting a leaf's veins in a circle and then eating in the middl
'/>"/>

Contact: Blaine Friedlander
bpf2@cornell.edu
607-254-8093
Cornell University Communications
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Revolutionary chefs? Not likely, shows physics research
2. Crossed (evolutionary) signals?
3. Mechanism and function of humor identified by new evolutionary theory
4. Revolutionary CO2 maps zoom in on greenhouse gas sources
5. M2SYS Introduces Revolutionary Biometric Artificial Intelligence Technology to Significantly Reduce Fingerprint Software False Reject Rates
6. Lemurs evolutionary history may shed light on our own
7. Dartmouth researchers find the root of the evolutionary emergence of vertebrates
8. Oldest Australian crayfish fossils provide missing evolutionary link
9. New book reveals an evolutionary journey of the human body
10. Scientists find missing evolutionary link using tiny fungus crystal
11. Primitive early relative of armadillos helps rewrite evolutionary family tree
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:7/24/2014)... Neiker-Tecnalia is currently conducting research into the potato genes ... characterised by a reduction in rainfall and increased extremes ... the most resistant genes in order to create new ... conditions.The research is also seeking to find out how ... of greater drought and higher and lower temperatures. , ...
(Date:7/24/2014)... in German . ... asthma sufferers worldwide, a further 600 million people living ... global population contending with allergic rhinitis (allergic inflammation of ... other organs and parts of the body beyond the ... the form of inflammatory bowel diseases such as colitis ...
(Date:7/24/2014)... release is available in German . ... to recognize and respond to threats to health, and ... detailed understanding of the mechanism underlying immunologic memory, however, ... have converged to support the hypothesis that the persistence ... cells with stem-cell-like potential. Until now, there was no ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Neiker-Tecnalia is researching the potato genes that best adapt to climate change 2New drugs to combat asthma and the like 2New drugs to combat asthma and the like 3Experiments prove 'stemness' of individual immune memory cells 2Experiments prove 'stemness' of individual immune memory cells 3
... 2012 -- Over the past 30 years, numerous studies ... such as bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, anxiety disorder and dementia. ... causes behavior disorders in a range of mammals and ... patients, but study results have been inconsistent. Now, ...
... People who have Ulcerative Colitis (UC) or Ileal ... their time between flares is crucial to successfully living ... combination of drugs, dietary changes and, for many, the ... the dietary management of these conditions. Now, Sigma-Tau Pharmaceuticals, ...
... across the globe are trying to develop plans to ... footprint by reducing the associated greenhouse gas emissions. While ... more energy efficient lighting, windows, and building systems, deeper ... a rethinking of how future infrastructure and energy policies ...
Cached Biology News:Does Borna disease virus cause mental illness? 2Maker of VSL#3 probiotic offers assistance program for ulcerative colitis and ileal pouch patients 2Columbia engineers map energy use in NYC buildings 2Columbia engineers map energy use in NYC buildings 3
(Date:7/24/2014)... the University of Delaware, is known worldwide for ... environmental sustainability and electronics. , His early academic ... well-defined, crystalline structure. At the atomic scale, their ... can separate molecules with size differences of merely ... nanometer), making them useful to the chemical and ...
(Date:7/24/2014)... July 24, 2014 Your cell ... in modeling lithium-ion battery storage capacity. , New ... a theoretical model created at Lawrence Livermore ... that predicts how carbon components will perform as ... emphasizes the urgent need for higher-performance batteries. Several ...
(Date:7/24/2014)... 24, 2014 2014 Deep Research ... is a professional and in-depth research report on ... Sulphate basic information, including its definition, classification, ... This research covers the international market analysis, including ... analysis covering macroeconomic environment & economic situation analysis, ...
(Date:7/24/2014)... July 24, 2014 The first part ... Escalation in First in Human Studies” will cover comprehensive ... go/no-go decisions. , With increasing R&D costs and declining ... need to maximize the knowledge collected in early Phase ... improve success in late stage development. , Next, the ...
Breaking Biology Technology:University of Delaware researcher describes new approach for creating organic zeolites 2Getting More Life out of Lithium-ion Batteries 2Potassium Sulphate Market & SHMP Industry 2014 (Global, China) Analysis Now Available at DeepResearchReports.com 2Potassium Sulphate Market & SHMP Industry 2014 (Global, China) Analysis Now Available at DeepResearchReports.com 3Potassium Sulphate Market & SHMP Industry 2014 (Global, China) Analysis Now Available at DeepResearchReports.com 4Best Practices for Optimizing Dose Escalation in First in Human Studies, New Webinar August 6th Hosted by Xtalks 2
... conversion of sunlight to electricity could brighten the ... National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) have found a new ... place in semiconductor thin-films. This new route to ... continues to plague conventional solid-state solar cells. ...
... ... its 6th annual student award program. , ... SAN DIEGO, CA (Vocus) March 30, 2010 ... for Environmental Health & Sciences Foundation (AEHS Foundation) to recognize talented, emerging environmental ...
... genetic sleight of hand, researcher Xinyao Liu and professor ... coaxed photosynthetic microbes to secrete oilbypassing energy and cost ... appear in this week,s advanced online issue of the ... or PNAS . The challenges of ...
Cached Biology Technology:New path to solar energy via solid-state photovoltaics 2New path to solar energy via solid-state photovoltaics 3Association for Environmental Health & Sciences Foundation and Adventus Group Recognize Future Environmental Science Leaders 2Association for Environmental Health & Sciences Foundation and Adventus Group Recognize Future Environmental Science Leaders 3Association for Environmental Health & Sciences Foundation and Adventus Group Recognize Future Environmental Science Leaders 4Microbes reprogrammed to ooze oil for renewable biofuel 2Microbes reprogrammed to ooze oil for renewable biofuel 3
... Immunogen: Immunogen corresponds to amino ... human SKAP55.,PA1-525 has been successfully used in ... By Western blot, this antibody detects an ... cells.This antibody has also been used in ...
... to suit the widest possible range of ... laboratory. Labware carriers can be placed at ... simple for the user, thanks to a ... correctly guided into position. This allows easy ...
... was developed in the late 1960s by ... the earliest commercial pioneers of immunoassay in ... in 1987. Sac-Cel rapidly found favour with ... "in house" radioimmunoassays, and became a benchmark ...
... (3-D-Gluconamidopropyl)deoxycholamide White solid. HYGROSCOPIC. A ... Has reduced electrostatic interactions that do not ... Aggregation number: 8-16. Purity: ≥95% by ... Aggregation number 8 - 16, CMC 1.1 ...
Biology Products: