HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Fungus-farming termites descend from an African rain forest Eve

This release is also available in Dutch and Danish.

Agriculture is not unique to humans: some insect groups have also evolved this way of life. One such group is the fungus-farming termites, which cultivate fungi as food inside their nests. Such termites can be found in both rain forest and savannah habitats in the Old World tropics, from Africa to Asia. But as researchers report this week, a combination of DNA sequence analysis and computer modelling suggests that termite agriculture originated in the African rain forest, and gave rise to the many fungus-cultivating termite species alive today in various parts of the Old World.

The relationship between the termites and the cultivated fungus represents an impressive example of mutualistic symbiosis. The termites use chewed plant material, such as wood and dry grass, to feed the fungus and allow it to flourish, while the fungus converts otherwise indigestible plant material into nutrients the termites can utilize. Earlier work had shown that in the evolutionary past, a single, unreversed, transition to agriculture occurred in which termites domesticated a single lineage of fungi, represented today by the genus Termitomyces, a white rot fungus. These fungi are some of the few organisms that can digest the plant component lignin. Within the termite colonies, which can grow very large, the fungus grows on a special structure called the comb, which is maintained by the termites by the continual addition of new plant material.

Researchers Duur Aanen (University of Copenhagen) and Paul Eggleton (The Natural History Museum London), having sampled 58 colonies of fungus-cultivating termites (representing 49 species) in Senegal, Cameroon, Gabon, Kenya, South Africa, Madagascar, India, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Malaysian Bor
'"/>

Contact: Heidi Hardman
hhardman@cell.com
1-617-397-2879
Cell Press
9-May-2005


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. New insights into chimpanzees, tools, and termites from the Congo basin
2. Mutation in brain cells of descendants of Abraham Lincoln suggest he suffered from movement disorder
3. Extinct giant deers descendant found in UK
4. Clues to future evolution of HIV come from African green monkeys
5. First all-African produced genetically engineered maize is resistant to maize streak virus
6. New clue why MS affects African-Americans differently than Caucasians
7. Stressed-out African naked mole-rats may provide clues about human infertility
8. Slow wave activity during sleep is lower in African-Americans than Caucasians
9. OSA symptoms more common among African-American women than Caucasians
10. West African Ocean sediment core links monsoons to global climate evolution
11. African carnage -- 1 years seized ivory likely came from 23,000 elephants

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


(Date:4/17/2017)... 2017 NXT-ID, Inc. (NASDAQ: NXTD ) ... of its 2016 Annual Report on Form 10-K on Thursday April ... ... in the Investor Relations section of the Company,s website at ... at http://www.sec.gov . 2016 Year Highlights: ...
(Date:4/13/2017)... PUNE, India , April 13, 2017 According ... Identity Proofing, Identity Authentication, Identity Analytics, Identity Administration, and Authorization), Service, Authentication ... by MarketsandMarkets™, the IAM Market is expected to grow from USD 14.30 ... Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 17.3%. ... ...
(Date:4/11/2017)... 11, 2017 Research and Markets has announced ... report to their offering. ... global eye tracking market to grow at a CAGR of 30.37% ... Tracking Market 2017-2021, has been prepared based on an in-depth market ... landscape and its growth prospects over the coming years. The report ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:9/17/2017)... ... 17, 2017 , ... GeneOne Life Science, Inc. announces that ... Safety (KMFDS) for an Investigational New Drug application for a Phase I/IIa study ... The study in Korea represents the second clinical trial for GLS-5300. , ...
(Date:9/14/2017)... ... September 14, 2017 , ... Boston Strategic ... experience with Health Economics and Outcomes Research (HEOR) and ‘big data’ to provide ... 2014, US healthcare spending exceeded $3.0 trillion with nearly 1/3 spent on hospitalizations. ...
(Date:9/13/2017)... ... 13, 2017 , ... AMRI, a global contract research, development ... and quality of life for more than 25 years, today announced that John ... the International Standards Organization/Technical Committee 194: Biological and Clinical Evaluation of Medical ...
(Date:9/12/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... September 12, 2017 , ... It wasn’t ... months, it has been hot, hot, hot, as Lajollacooks4u has had a record-breaking number ... , Guests came from far and wide to celebrate company outings, family get-togethers, anniversaries ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: