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Feschotte C.,University of Texas at Arlington | Gilbert C.,CNRS Ecobiological Interactions
Nature Reviews Genetics | Year: 2012

Recent studies have uncovered myriad viral sequences that are integrated or 'endogenized' in the genomes of various eukaryotes. Surprisingly, it appears that not just retroviruses but almost all types of viruses can become endogenous. We review how these genomic 'fossils' offer fresh insights into the origin, evolutionary dynamics and structural evolution of viruses, which are giving rise to the burgeoning field of palaeovirology. We also examine the multitude of ways through which endogenous viruses have influenced, for better or worse, the biology of their hosts. We argue that the conflict between hosts and viruses has led to the invention and diversification of molecular arsenals, which, in turn, promote the cellular co-option of endogenous viruses. © 2012 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved. Source

Richard F.-J.,CNRS Ecobiological Interactions | Hunt J.H.,North Carolina State University
Insectes Sociaux | Year: 2013

Chemical messengers are the primary mode of intracolony communication in the majority of social insect species. Chemically transmitted information plays a major role in nestmate recognition and kin recognition. Physical and behavioral castes often differ in chemical signature, and queen effects can be significant regulators of behavior and reproduction. Chemical messengers themselves differ in molecular structure, and the effects on behavior and other variables can differ as a consequence of not only molecular structure of the chemical messenger itself but also of its temporal expression, quantity, chemical blends with other compounds, and effects of the environment. The most studied, and probably the most widespread, intracolony chemical messengers are cuticular hydrocarbons (CHCs). CHCs are diverse and have been well studied in social insects with regard to both chemical structure and their role as pheromones. CHCs and other chemical messengers can be distributed among colony members via physical contact, grooming, trophallaxis, and contact with the nesting substrate. Widespread intracolony distribution of chemical messengers gives each colony a specific odor whereby colony members are integrated into the social life of the colony and non-members of the colony are excluded. Colony odor can vary as a function of genetic diversity within the colony, and the odor of a colony can change as a function of colony age and environmental effects. Chemical messengers can disseminate information on the presence of reproductives and fertility of the queen(s) and workers, and queen pheromone can play a significant role in suppressing reproduction by other colony members. New analytical tools and new avenues of investigation can continue to expand knowledge of how individual insects function as members of a society and how the society functions as a collective. © 2013 International Union for the Study of Social Insects (IUSSI). Source

Hunt J.H.,North Carolina State University | Richard F.-J.,CNRS Ecobiological Interactions
Insectes Sociaux | Year: 2013

Vibrations and sounds, collectively called vibroacoustics, play significant roles in intracolony communication in termites, social wasps, ants, and social bees. Modalities of vibroacoustic signal production include stridulation, gross body movements, wing movements, high-frequency muscle contractions without wing movements, and scraping mandibles or tapping body parts on resonant substrates. Vibroacoustic signals are perceived primarily via Johnston's organs in the antennae and subgenual organs in the legs. Substrate vibrations predominate as vibroacoustic modalities, with only honey bees having been shown to be able to hear airborne sound. Vibroacoustic messages include alarm, recruitment, colony activation, larval provisioning cues, and food resource assessment. This review describes the modalities and their behavioral contexts rather than electrophysiological aspects, therefore placing emphasis on the adaptive roles of vibroacoustic communication. Although much vibroacoustics research has been done, numerous opportunities exist for continuations and new directions in vibroacoustics research. © 2013 International Union for the Study of Social Insects (IUSSI). Source

Gilbert C.,CNRS Ecobiological Interactions | Chateigner A.,CNRS Research Institute of Insect Biology | Ernenwein L.,CNRS Ecobiological Interactions | Barbe V.,French Atomic Energy Commission | And 3 more authors.
Nature communications | Year: 2014

Horizontal transfer (HT) of DNA is an important factor shaping eukaryote evolution. Although several hundreds of eukaryote-to-eukaryote HTs of transposable elements (TEs) have been reported, the vectors underlying these transfers remain elusive. Here, we show that multiple copies of two TEs from the cabbage looper (Trichoplusia ni) transposed in vivo into genomes of the baculovirus Autographa californica multiple nucleopolyhedrovirus (AcMNPV) during caterpillar infection. We further demonstrate that both TEs underwent recent HT between several sympatric moth species (T. ni, Manduca sexta, Helicoverpa spp.) showing different degrees of susceptibility to AcMNPV. Based on two independent population genomics data sets (reaching a total coverage >330,000X), we report a frequency of one moth TE in ~8,500 AcMNPV genomes. Together, our results provide strong support for the role of viruses as vectors of TE HT between animals, and they call for a systematic evaluation of the frequency and impact of virus-mediated HT on the evolution of host genomes. Source

Beltran-Bech S.,CNRS Ecobiological Interactions | Richard F.-J.,CNRS Ecobiological Interactions
Animal Behaviour | Year: 2014

Sexual selection predicts that mate choice increases individual fitness. Infection by parasites (from eukaryotes to bacteria or viruses) can reduce this individual fitness, altering the infected individuals' sexual traits and molecular cues. In this case, one would expect to observe mechanisms for avoiding infection during mate choice. The vast majority of host responses to infection in terms of mate choice are intended to avoid infection, but the costs of mate choice can also hinder infection avoidance. This paper highlights the main limitations in current knowledge and empirical experiments, and summarizes the key factors that should be taken into account to test the hypothesis of infection avoidance in mate choice: the time of host-parasite coevolution in the biological interaction implied, the choosy sex tested (male, female or both) and the genetic background of the individuals tested. © 2014 The Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour. Source

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