HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Amoebae control cheating by keeping it in the family

HOUSTON, July 5, 2007 -- No one likes a cheater, even a single-celled one.

New research from Rice University shows how cooperative single-celled amoebae rely on family ties to keep cheaters from undermining the health of their colonies. The research appeared in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences in May.

"It's very unusual to get a complete story in biology -- one that marries careful field work with painstaking work in the laboratory -- and that's what we have here," said research co-author Joan Strassmann, chair of Rice's Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology.

Rice's research involved the common soil microbe Dictyostelium discoideum. These amoebae can be loners in times of plenty, but when food is scarce they work together, forming colonies to ensure their survival. About one fifth of the individuals in a colony form a tall, thin stalk. The rest climb the stalk and clump together into a bulbous fruiting body that can be carried away to better environs by the wind or on the legs of passing insects.

This simple social system poses an evolutionary conundrum for biologists; the members of the stalk give themselves up altruistically to support the colony, so what's to keep more selfish strains of D. discoideum from cheating the system, avoiding the stalk and out-reproducing their altruistic neighbors"

Strassmann and Rice evolutionary biologist David Queller have previously investigated how Dictyostelium colonies control cheating. For example, a study on D. discoideum showed that one gene governing cooperative behavior was also tied to reproduction. In another study, mutants that were genetically predisposed to avoid altruistic service in the stalk were also excluded from reproducing. A third study demonstrated that Dictyostelium purpureum preferentially associated with its own kin -- another mechanism that ensures altruism isn't taken advantage of by cheaters.

The current study comb
'"/>

Contact: Jade Boyd
jadeboyd@rice.edu
713-348-6778
Rice University
5-Jul-2007


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Circadian clock controls plant growth hormone
2. Weizmann Institute scientists discover a control mechanism for metastasis
3. Researchers find pathway that controls cell size and division
4. Penn researchers discover how microRNAs control protein synthesis
5. Biocontrol of invasive water hyacinth contributes to socioeconomic and health improvements in Africa
6. Revealed -- Mosquito genes that could be controlling the spread of killer viruses
7. Autism-related proteins control nerve excitability, researchers find
8. Weizmann Institute scientists develop a general control switch for protein activity
9. Researchers demonstrate way to control tree height
10. Hot on the TRAIL of controlling inflammation in bacterial meningitis
11. Small, self-controlled planes combine plant pathology and engineering

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:7/31/2018)... (PRWEB) , ... July 31, 2018 , ... GSL ... connect seamlessly with LabArchives , the leading cloud-based Electronic Lab Notebook (ELN) platform. ... LabArchives enables researchers to store all of their research data records in a secure, ...
(Date:7/30/2018)... Colo. (PRWEB) , ... July 30, 2018 , ... ... from preclinical trials on the beneficial impact of biofield energy healing treated Vitamin ... results show: ,     Over 260% increase in ALP, a ...
(Date:7/28/2018)... ... July 28, 2018 , ... Professor You-Lin Xu, ... (PolyU), has been honoured with the International Association for Wind Engineering (IAWE) Senior ... and bridge engineering in research, education, and application. Professor Xu is the first ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:7/31/2018)... ... July 31, 2018 , ... ... that covers methods for extracting and using adipose tissue-derived stem cells to treat ... humans. While this patent covers Canada specifically, VetStem has been issued similar ...
(Date:7/31/2018)... ... 31, 2018 , ... Mahoney Environmental , a leading ... new website. The new website has been designed with improved functionality and navigation, ... Innovative to build a website created for the customer. The newly redesigned site ...
(Date:7/26/2018)... ... July 26, 2018 , ... Ariadne Afaganis, an ... biofield energy treated nutraceutical to improve anti-inflammatory and immune function responses. , Biomarkers ... the preclinical research, were significantly reduced. Results are as follows:, ...
(Date:7/25/2018)... ... July 25, 2018 , ... Dimitrius Anagnos, an ... to combat inflammation and autoimmune disorders. , The preclinical research assessed biomarkers ... data was reported:, Over 70% decrease in Interleukin ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: