HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
X-ray images help explain limits to insect body size

Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory have cast new light on why the giant insects that lived millions of years ago disappeared.

In the late Paleozoic Era, with atmospheric oxygen levels reaching record highs, some insects evolved into giants. When oxygen levels returned to lower levels, the insect giants went extinct.

The basis of this gigantism is thought to lie in the insect respiratory system. In contrast to vertebrates, where blood transports oxygen from the lung to the cell, insects deliver oxygen directly through a network of blind-ending tracheal tubes. As insects get bigger, this type of oxygen transport becomes far less effective. But if the atmospheric oxygen levels increase, as they did in the late Paleozoic, then longer tracheal tubes can work. This would allow larger-sized insectseven giantsto evolve.

Recent research published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Science helps confirm the hypothesis that the tracheal system actually limits how big insects can be. The research provides a specific explanation for what limits size in beetles: the constriction leading to the legs.

A collaborative team of researchers from Argonne's Advanced Photon Source (APS), Midwestern University and Arizona State University wanted to study how beetles' tracheal systems change as their body sizes increase. The team took advantage of richly detailed X-ray images they produced at the APS to examine the dimensions of tracheal tubes in four beetle species, ranging in body mass by a factor of 1,000.

Overall, they found that larger beetle species devote a disproportionately greater fraction of their body to tracheal tubes than do smaller species.

The team focused in particular on the passageways that lead from the body core to the head and to the legs. They reasoned that these orifices may be bottlenecks for tracheal tubes, limiting how much oxygen can be delive
'"/>

Contact: Sylvia Carson
scarson@anl.gov
630-252-5510
DOE/Argonne National Laboratory
10-Aug-2007


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Worlds first X-ray free electron laser is on course to completion
2. Bones in motion: Brown scientists to create new 3-D X-ray system
3. Chest X-ray exposure may increase likelihood of breast cancer
4. X-rays good predictor of survival in avian flu patients
5. New and sharper X-rays of cells ribosome could lead to better antibiotics
6. Researchers debut new X-ray resources for studying molecules
7. X-rays have become laser-like
8. Powerful X-ray beams at Argonne, new electronic flight simulator
9. New system reduces risk of burns during interventional X-rays
10. MIT creates 3-D images of living cell
11. Satellite images reveal link between urban growth and changing rainfall patterns

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


(Date:7/1/2020)... , ... July 01, 2020 , ... ... awareness and solutions for glioblastoma—the most common and aggressive adult brain cancer—announced today ... JD, PhD. Senior Fellows are charged with supporting the organization’s initiatives and overall ...
(Date:6/25/2020)... Mass. (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2020 , ... ... of cloud-based enterprise software and software-driven clinical data services that accelerate drug development, ... for low-dose selinexor, an XPO1 inhibitor, in hospitalized patients with severe COVID-19. This ...
(Date:6/23/2020)... ... 2020 , ... The field of quantitation of large molecules or proteins has ... area. However, the use of mass spectrometry in this field has gained a lot ... do you choose which approach to use (LBA or MS)?” In many cases, ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:7/1/2020)... ... June 30, 2020 , ... ... insights, today announced that the launch of a new clinical diagnostics ... about the tumor microenvironment (TME). , “Flagship’s TissueInsight is a service that ...
(Date:6/28/2020)... ... June 25, 2020 , ... With ... a vaccine or drug treatment. In an effort to better understand the cellular ... the world’s largest imaging dataset portraying therapeutic compound effects from over 1,600 approved ...
(Date:6/28/2020)... SILVER SPRING, Md. (PRWEB) , ... June 26, ... ... the leading trade association representing security solutions providers, today announced its strong opposition ... . , The bill would impose a blanket ban on most federal use ...
(Date:6/23/2020)... ... June 23, 2020 , ... DeCurtis Corporation, the premier provider ... Derek Fournier has been appointed CEO and President. Founder and former CEO, David ... , “DeCurtis Corporation has been on an incredible journey for the last twenty ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: