RSS 2.0 Feed

» Welcome Guest Log In :: Register

Pages: (59) < [1] 2 3 4 5 6 ... >   
  Topic: Science Break, Selected Shorts< Next Oldest | Next Newest >  

Posts: 5427
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 12 2009,19:43   

Ancient Virus Gave Wasps Their Sting

By Rachel Zelkowitz

ScienceNOW Daily News

12 February 2009

There's no consent for these surrogate parents. Tens of thousands of wasp species lay their eggs inside caterpillars, injecting toxins that paralyze the hosts and allow their young to feast on the innards with impunity. Researchers have long wondered what exactly these toxins are and where they came from. The answers, a new genetic analysis reveals, have to do with a virus that infected wasps millions of years ago.

So in the new study, Drezen's team looked at DNA from wasp ovaries, in which the polydnaviruses are made. They analyzed DNA from three different wasp species and checked the sequences against those of known insect viruses. In one group of wasps, 22 genes matched those of an ancient family of viruses called nudiviruses, the researchers report tomorrow in Science. Further experiments showed that these genes code for key structural proteins in the wasps' polydnavirus toxins.

Lou FCD is still in school, so we should only count him as a baby biologist. -carlsonjok -deprecated
I think I might love you. Don't tell Deadman -Wolfhound

Work-friendly photography
NSFW photography

  1753 replies since July 16 2008,08:10 < Next Oldest | Next Newest >  

Pages: (59) < [1] 2 3 4 5 6 ... >   

Track this topic Email this topic Print this topic

[ Read the Board Rules ] | [Useful Links] | [Evolving Designs]