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Regulation of genes related with juvenile hormone metabolism in Apis mellifera, relationship with insulin-TOR pathway and dietary status

Grant number: 08/05246-0
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctorate
Effective date (Start): October 01, 2008
Effective date (End): September 30, 2009
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Biology
Principal Investigator:Zilá Luz Paulino Simões
Grantee:Aline Mackert dos Santos
Home Institution: Faculdade de Filosofia, Ciências e Letras de Ribeirão Preto (FFCLRP). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Ribeirão Preto , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:05/03926-5 - Functional genomics of Apis mellifera: search for new genes and functional networks in the context of development, different castes and reproduction, AP.TEM


Juvenile hormone (JH) is an important factor regulating many aspects of insect life. In the Honey bee, Apis mellifera, JH is involved in cast differentiation and behavioral development. The rates of JH are determined by its synthesis in corpora allata and degradation by specific enzymes. In Honey bee, genes involved in JH synthesis and degradation showed to be regulated by dietary manipulation. The insulin/TOR pathway, which is activated according to food quality and quantity, has been described to be an important factor regulating CA activity. In this work, we aimed to study the dietary status regulation over JH production in CA using the expression of genes coding to synthesis and degradation pathways and also the expression of insulin/TOR genes in CA, as an indication of food influence. The promoter region of methyl farnesoate epoxidase (MFE), last step in JH synthesis, will be studied for a more specific focus on JH regulation. The mfe gene showed to be regulated according to the quality of food received by adult workers. The proposed work will generate knew data in Apis mellifera biology, and probably will help to understand aspects of the life cycle of this important social insect.