Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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    Genetics and selective breeding of variation in wing truncation in a flightless aphid control agent
    Lommen, Suzanne T.E. ; Koops, Kees G. ; Cornelder, Bardo A. ; Jong, Peter W. de; Brakefield, Paul M. - \ 2019
    Entomologia Experimentalis et Applicata 167 (2019)7. - ISSN 0013-8703 - p. 636 - 645.
    Adalia bipunctata - artificial selection - augmentative pest control - biological control - Coccinellidae - Coleoptera - cryptic genetic variation - gene-by-environment interaction - ladybird - modifier genes - predator - winglessness

    Augmentative biological control by predaceous ladybird beetles can be improved by using flightless morphs, which have longer residence times on the host plants. The two-spot ladybird beetle, Adalia bipunctata (L.) (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae), is used for the biological control of aphids in greenhouses and on urban trees. Flightlessness due to truncated wings occurs at very low frequency in some natural populations of A. bipunctata. Pure-breeding strains of this 'wingless' genotype of A. bipunctata can easily be obtained in the laboratory. Such strains have not been commercialized yet due to concerns about their reduced fitness compared to wild-type strains, which renders mass production more expensive. Wingless strains exhibit, however, wide intra-population phenotypic variation in the extent of wing truncation which is related to fitness traits. We here use classical quantitative genetic techniques to study the heritability and genetic architecture of variation in wing truncation in a wingless strain of A. bipunctata. Split-families reared at one of two temperatures revealed strong family-by-temperature interaction: heritability was estimated as 0.64 ± 0.09 at 19 °C and 0.29 ± 0.06 at 29 °C. Artificial selection in opposite directions at 21 °C demonstrated that the degree of wing truncation can be altered within a few generations resulting in wingless phenotypes without any wing tissue (realized h2 = 0.72), as well as those with minimal truncations (realized h2 = 0.61) in two replicates. The latter lines produced more than twice as many individuals. This indicates that selective breeding of wing truncation may be exploited to improve mass rearing of flightless strains of A. bipunctata for commercial biological control. Our work illustrates that cryptic variation can also be a source for the selective breeding of natural enemies.

    Pervasive gene expression responses to a fluctuating diet in Drosophila melanogaster : The importance of measuring multiple traits to decouple potential mediators of life span and reproduction
    Zandveld, Jelle ; Heuvel, Joost van den; Mulder, Maarten ; Brakefield, Paul M. ; Kirkwood, Thomas B.L. ; Shanley, Daryl P. ; Zwaan, Bas J. - \ 2017
    Evolution 71 (2017)11. - ISSN 0014-3820 - p. 2572 - 2583.
    Fecundity - gene regulatory networks - life span regulation - phenotypic plasticity - trade-offs
    Phenotypic plasticity is an important concept in life-history evolution, and most organisms, including Drosophila melanogaster, show a plastic life-history response to diet. However, little is known about how these life-history responses are mediated. In this study, we compared adult female flies fed an alternating diet (yoyo flies) with flies fed a constant low (CL) or high (CH) diet and tested how whole genome expression was affected by these diet regimes and how the transcriptional responses related to different life-history traits. We showed that flies were able to respond quickly to diet fluctuations throughout life span by drastically changing their transcription. Importantly, by measuring the response of multiple life-history traits we were able to decouple groups of genes associated with life span or reproduction, life-history traits that often covary with a diet change. A coexpression network analysis uncovered which genes underpin the separate and shared regulation of these life-history traits. Our study provides essential insights to help unravel the genetic architecture mediating life-history responses to diet, and it shows that the flies’ whole genome transcription response is highly plastic.
    A high-coverage draft genome of the mycalesine butterfly Bicyclus anynana
    Nowell, Reuben W. ; Elsworth, Ben ; Oostra, Vicencio ; Zwaan, Bas J. ; Wheat, Christopher W. ; Saastamoinen, Marjo ; Saccheri, Ilik J. ; Hof, Arjen E. van 't; Wasik, Bethany R. ; Connahs, Heidi ; Aslam, Muhammad L. ; Kumar, Sujai ; Challis, Richard J. ; Monteiro, Antónia ; Brakefield, Paul M. ; Blaxter, Mark - \ 2017
    GigaScience 6 (2017)7. - ISSN 2047-217X
    Bicyclus anynana - Lepidopteran genome - Nymphalid - Nymphalidae - Satyrid - Squinting bush brown

    The mycalesine butterfly Bicyclus anynana, the "Squinting bush brown," is a model organism in the study of lepidopteran ecology, development, and evolution. Here, we present a draft genome sequence for B. anynana to serve as a genomics resource for current and future studies of this important model species. Seven libraries with insert sizes ranging from 350 bp to 20 kb were constructed using DNA from an inbred female and sequenced using both Illumina and PacBio technology; 128 Gb of raw Illumina data was filtered to 124 Gb and assembled to a final size of 475 Mb (~×260 assembly coverage). Contigs were scaffolded using mate-pair, transcriptome, and PacBio data into 10 800 sequences with an N50 of 638 kb (longest scaffold 5 Mb). The genome is comprised of 26% repetitive elements and encodes a total of 22 642 predicted protein-coding genes. Recovery of a BUSCO set of core metazoan genes was almost complete (98%). Overall, these metrics compare well with other recently published lepidopteran genomes. We report a high-quality draft genome sequence for Bicyclus anynana. The genome assembly and annotated gene models are available at LepBase (http://ensembl.lepbase.org/index.html).

    Data from: On the fate of seasonally plastic traits in a rainforest butterfly under relaxed selection
    Oostra, Vicencio ; Brakefield, P.M. ; Hiltemann, Y. ; Zwaan, Bas ; Brattström, O. - \ 2015
    Leiden University
    Constraints - Life History Evolution - Bicyclus sanaos - seasonality - Phenotypic Plasticity - Bicyclus anynana - Bicyclus martius - reproductive investment
    Many organisms display phenotypic plasticity as adaptation to seasonal environmental fluctuations. Often, such seasonal responses entails plasticity of a whole suite of morphological and life-history traits that together contribute to the adaptive phenotypes in the alternative environments. While phenotypic plasticity in general is a well-studied phenomenon, little is known about the evolutionary fate of plastic responses if natural selection on plasticity is relaxed. Here, we study whether the presumed ancestral seasonal plasticity of the rainforest butterfly Bicyclus sanaos (Fabricius, 1793) is still retained despite the fact that this species inhabits an environmentally stable habitat. Being exposed to an atypical range of temperatures in the laboratory revealed hidden reaction norms for several traits, including wing pattern. In contrast, reproductive body allocation has lost the plastic response. In the savannah butterfly, B. anynana (Butler, 1879), these traits show strong developmental plasticity as an adaptation to the contrasting environments of its seasonal habitat and they are coordinated via a common developmental hormonal system. Our results for B. sanaos indicate that such integration of plastic traits – as a result of past selection on expressing a coordinated environmental response – can be broken when the optimal reaction norms for those traits diverge in a new environment.
    Data from: The plastic fly: the effect of sustained fluctuations in adult food supply on life history traits
    Heuvel, Joost van den; Zandveld, Jelle ; Mulder, M. ; Brakefield, P.M. ; Kirkwood, T.B.L. ; Shanley, D.P. ; Zwaan, Bas - \ 2014
    Wageningen University & Research
    ageing - resource allocation - lifespan - life history - phenotypic plasticity - weight - diet - drosophila melanogaster - reproduction
    Many adult traits in Drosophila melanogaster show phenotypic plasticity, and the effects of diet on traits such as lifespan and reproduction are well explored. Although plasticity in response to food is still present in older flies, it is unknown how sustained environmental variation affects life-history traits. Here, we explore how such life-long fluctuations of food supply affect weight and survival in groups of flies and affect weight, survival and reproduction in individual flies. In both experiments, we kept adults on constant high or low food and compared these to flies that experienced fluctuations of food either once or twice a week. For these ‘yoyo’ groups, the initial food level and the duration of the dietary variation differed during adulthood, creating four ‘yoyo’ fly groups. In groups of flies, survival and weight were affected by adult food. However, for individuals, survival and reproduction, but not weight, were affected by adult food, indicating that single and group housing of female flies affects life-history trajectories. Remarkably, both the manner and extent to which life-history traits varied in relation to food depended on whether flies initially experienced high or low food after eclosion. We therefore conclude that the expression of life-history traits in adult life is affected not only by adult plasticity, but also by early adult life experiences. This is an important but often overlooked factor in studies of life-history evolution and may explain variation in life-history experiments.
    Ecdysteroid hormones link the juvenile environment to alternative adult life histories in a seasonal insect
    Oostra, V. ; Mateus, A.R.A. ; Burg, K.R.L. van den; Piessens, T. ; Eijk, M. van; Brakefield, P.M. ; Beldade, P. ; Zwaan, B.J. - \ 2014
    Wageningen UR
    development - endocrinology - evolution - life history - aging - phenotypic plasticity - physiology - seasonal adaptation - ecdysone
    Four datasets from: Ecdysteroid hormones link the juvenile environment to alternative adult life histories in a seasonal insect; by Oostra, Vicencio; Mateus, Ana Rita A.; Van der Burg, Karin R.L.; Piessens,Thomas; Van Eijk, Marleen; Brakefield, Paul M.; Beldade, Patrícia; Zwaan, Bas; as published in American Naturalist 2014. This ZIP archive contains four csv data files: 1) experiment1.csv; 2) experiment2_dataset1.csv; 3) experiment2_dataset2.csv; 4) experiment2_dataset3.csv. See readme.txt for details.
    The scent of inbreeding: male sex pheromones betray inbred males
    Nieberding, C.M. ; Bergen, E. van; Brakefield, P.M. ; Heuskin, S. ; Zwaan, B.J. - \ 2014
    Chemical Senses 39 (2014)1. - ISSN 0379-864X - p. 105 - 105.
    Inbreeding depression results from mating among genetically related individualsand impairs reproductive success. The decrease in male matingsuccess is usually attributed to an impact on multiple fitness-related traitsthat reduce the general condition of inbred males. Here, we find that the productionof the male sex pheromone is reduced significantly by inbreeding inthe butterfly Bicyclus anynana. Other traits indicative of the general condition,including flight performance, are also negatively affected in malebutterflies by inbreeding. Yet, we unambiguously show that only the productionof male pheromones affects mating success. Thus, this pheromonesignal informs females about the inbreeding status of their mating partners.We also identify the specific chemical component, hexadecanal, probablyresponsible for the decrease in male mating success. Our results advocategiving increased attention to olfactory communication as a major causalfactor of mate-choice decisions and sexual selection.Published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society of London (2013)
    Adaptive developmental plasticity: Compartmentalized responses to environmental cues and corresponding internal signals provide phenotypic flexibility
    Mateus, A.R.A. ; Marques-Pita, M. ; Oostra, V. ; Lafuente, E. ; Brakefield, P.M. ; Zwaan, B.J. ; Beldade, P. - \ 2014
    BMC Biology 12 (2014). - ISSN 1741-7007 - 15 p.
    butterfly bicyclus-anynana - color pattern - wing patterns - distal-less - evo-devo - evolution - size - lepidoptera - integration - eyespots
    Background The environmental regulation of development can result in the production of distinct phenotypes from the same genotype and provide the means for organisms to cope with environmental heterogeneity. The effect of the environment on developmental outcomes is typically mediated by hormonal signals which convey information about external cues to the developing tissues. While such plasticity is a wide-spread property of development, not all developing tissues are equally plastic. To understand how organisms integrate environmental input into coherent adult phenotypes, we must know how different body parts respond, independently or in concert, to external cues and to the corresponding internal signals. Results We quantified the effect of temperature and ecdysone hormone manipulations on post-growth tissue patterning in an experimental model of adaptive developmental plasticity, the butterfly Bicyclus anynana. Following a suite of traits evolving by natural or sexual selection, we found that different groups of cells within the same tissue have sensitivities and patterns of response that are surprisingly distinct for the external environmental cue and for the internal hormonal signal. All but those wing traits presumably involved in mate choice responded to developmental temperature and, of those, all but the wing traits not exposed to predators responded to hormone manipulations. On the other hand, while patterns of significant response to temperature contrasted traits on autonomously-developing wings, significant response to hormone manipulations contrasted neighboring groups of cells with distinct color fates. We also showed that the spatial compartmentalization of these responses cannot be explained by the spatial or temporal compartmentalization of the hormone receptor protein. Conclusions Our results unravel the integration of different aspects of the adult phenotype into developmental and functional units which both reflect and impact evolutionary change. Importantly, our findings underscore the complexity of the interactions between environment and physiology in shaping the development of different body parts.
    On the fate of seasonally plastic traits in a rainforest butterfly under relaxed selection
    Oostra, V. ; Brakefield, P.M. ; Hiltemann, Y. ; Zwaan, B.J. ; Brattström, O. - \ 2014
    Ecology and Evolution 4 (2014)13. - ISSN 2045-7758 - p. 2654 - 2667.
    sexual size dimorphism - bicyclus-anynana - phenotypic plasticity - reaction norms - life-history - evolutionary significance - artificial selection - geographic-variation - resource-allocation - thermal plasticity
    Many organisms display phenotypic plasticity as adaptation to seasonal environmental fluctuations. Often, such seasonal responses entails plasticity of a whole suite of morphological and life-history traits that together contribute to the adaptive phenotypes in the alternative environments. While phenotypic plasticity in general is a well-studied phenomenon, little is known about the evolutionary fate of plastic responses if natural selection on plasticity is relaxed. Here, we study whether the presumed ancestral seasonal plasticity of the rainforest butterfly Bicyclus sanaos (Fabricius, 1793) is still retained despite the fact that this species inhabits an environmentally stable habitat. Being exposed to an atypical range of temperatures in the laboratory revealed hidden reaction norms for several traits, including wing pattern. In contrast, reproductive body allocation has lost the plastic response. In the savannah butterfly, B. anynana (Butler, 1879), these traits show strong developmental plasticity as an adaptation to the contrasting environments of its seasonal habitat and they are coordinated via a common developmental hormonal system. Our results for B. sanaos indicate that such integration of plastic traits – as a result of past selection on expressing a coordinated environmental response – can be broken when the optimal reaction norms for those traits diverge in a new environment
    Ecdysteroid hormones link the juvenile environment to alternative adult life histories in a seasonal insect
    Oostra, V. ; Mateus, A.R.A. ; Burg, K.R.L. van den; Piessens, T. ; Eijk, M. van; Brakefield, P.M. ; Beldade, P. ; Zwaan, B.J. - \ 2014
    American Naturalist 184 (2014)3. - ISSN 0003-0147 - p. E79 - E92.
    butterfly bicyclus-anynana - drosophila-melanogaster - phenotypic plasticity - developmental temperature - adaptive responses - thermal plasticity - wing pattern - lepidoptera - diapause - nymphalidae
    The conditional expression of alternative life strategies is a widespread feature of animal life and a pivotal adaptation to life in seasonal environments. To optimally match suites of traits to seasonally changing ecological opportunities, animals living in seasonal environments need mechanisms linking information on environmental quality to resource allocation decisions. The butterfly Bicyclus anynana expresses alternative adult life histories in the alternating wet and dry seasons of its habitat as endpoints of divergent developmental pathways triggered by seasonal variation in preadult temperature. Pupal ecdysteroid hormone titers are correlated with the seasonal environment, but whether they play a functional role in coordinating the coupling of adult traits in the alternative life histories is unknown. Here, we show that manipulating pupal ecdysteroid levels is sufficient to mimic in direction and magnitude the shifts in adult reproductive resource allocation normally induced by seasonal temperature. Crucially, this allocation shift is accompanied by changes in ecologically relevant traits, including timing of reproduction, life span, and starvation resistance. Together, our results support a functional role for ecdysteroids during development in mediating strategic reproductive investment decisions in response to predictive indicators of environmental quality. This study provides a physiological mechanism for adaptive developmental plasticity, allowing organisms to cope with variable environments
    The plastic fly: the effect of sustained fluctuations in adult food supply on life-history traits
    Heuvel, J. van den; Zandveld, J. ; Mulder, M. ; Brakefield, P.M. ; Kirkwood, T.B.L. ; Shanley, D.P. ; Zwaan, B.J. - \ 2014
    Journal of Evolutionary Biology 27 (2014)11. - ISSN 1010-061X - p. 2322 - 2333.
    drosophila-melanogaster - phenotypic plasticity - metabolic-rate - evolution - span - reproduction - population - restriction - temperature - senescence
    Many adult traits in Drosophila melanogaster show phenotypic plasticity, and the effects of diet on traits such as lifespan and reproduction are well explored. Although plasticity in response to food is still present in older flies, it is unknown how sustained environmental variation affects life-history traits. Here, we explore how such life-long fluctuations of food supply affect weight and survival in groups of flies and affect weight, survival and reproduction in individual flies. In both experiments, we kept adults on constant high or low food and compared these to flies that experienced fluctuations of food either once or twice a week. For these ‘yoyo’ groups, the initial food level and the duration of the dietary variation differed during adulthood, creating four ‘yoyo’ fly groups. In groups of flies, survival and weight were affected by adult food. However, for individuals, survival and reproduction, but not weight, were affected by adult food, indicating that single and group housing of female flies affects life-history trajectories. Remarkably, both the manner and extent to which life-history traits varied in relation to food depended on whether flies initially experienced high or low food after eclosion. We therefore conclude that the expression of life-history traits in adult life is affected not only by adult plasticity, but also by early adult life experiences. This is an important but often overlooked factor in studies of life-history evolution and may explain variation in life-history experiments
    Data from: The scent of inbreeding: male sex pheromones betray inbred males
    Bergen, E. van; Brakefield, P.M. ; Heuskin, S. ; Zwaan, Bas ; Nieberding, C.M. - \ 2013
    Leiden University
    flight performance - mating success - Bicyclus anynana - inbreeding depression - male sex pheromone - female choice
    Inbreeding depression results from mating among genetically related individuals and impairs reproductive success. The decrease in male mating success is usually attributed to an impact on multiple fitness-related traits that reduce the general condition of inbred males. Here we find that the production of the male sex pheromone is reduced significantly by inbreeding in the butterfly Bicyclus anynana. Other traits indicative of the general condition, including flight performance, are also negatively affected in male butterflies by inbreeding. Yet we unambiguously show that only the production of male pheromones affects mating success. Thus, this pheromone signal informs females about the inbreeding status of their mating partners. We also identify the specific chemical component, hexadecanal, likely responsible for the decrease in male mating success. Our results advocate giving increased attention to olfactory communication as a major causal factor of mate-choice decisions and sexual selection.
    Footprints of selection in wild populations of Bicyclus anynana along a latitudinal cline
    Jong, M.A. de; Collins, S. ; Beldade, P. ; Brakefield, P.M. ; Zwaan, B.J. - \ 2013
    Molecular Ecology 22 (2013)2. - ISSN 0962-1083 - p. 341 - 353.
    drosophila-melanogaster - eastern australia - life-history - genetic responses - stress resistance - wing pattern - evolution - polymorphism - divergence - adaptation
    One of the major questions in ecology and evolutionary biology is how variation in the genome enables species to adapt to divergent environments. Here, we study footprints of thermal selection in candidate genes in six wild populations of the afrotropical butterfly Bicyclus anynana sampled along a c. 3000 km latitudinal cline. We sequenced coding regions of 31 selected genes with known functions in metabolism, pigment production, development and heat shock responses. These include genes for which we expect a priori a role in thermal adaptation and, thus, varying selection pressures along a latitudinal cline, and genes we do not expect to vary clinally and can be used as controls. We identified amino acid substitution polymorphisms in 13 genes and tested these for clinal variation by correlation analysis of allele frequencies with latitude. In addition, we used two FST-based outlier methods to identify loci with higher population differentiation than expected under neutral evolution, while accounting for potentially confounding effects of population structure and demographic history. Two metabolic enzymes of the glycolytic pathway, UGP and Treh, showed clinal variation. The same loci showed elevated population differentiation and were identified as significant outliers. We found no evidence of clines in the pigmentation genes, heat shock proteins and developmental genes. However, we identified outlier loci in more localized parts of the range in the pigmentation genes yellow and black. We discuss that the observed clinal variation and elevated population divergence in UGP and Treh may reflect adaptation to a geographic thermal gradient.
    The Predictive Adaptive Response: Modeling the Life-History Evolution of the Butterfly
    Heuvel, J. van den; Saastamoinen, M. ; Brakefield, P.M. ; Kirkwood, T.B. ; Zwaan, B.J. ; Shanley, D.P. - \ 2013
    American Naturalist 181 (2013)2. - ISSN 0003-0147 - p. E28 - E42.
    phenotypic plasticity - metabolic syndrome - body-size - adaptation - starvation - growth - flight - lepidoptera - temperature - hypothesis
    A predictive adaptive response (PAR) is a type of developmental plasticity where the response to an environmental cue is not immediately advantageous but instead is later in life. The PAR is a way for organisms to maximize fitness in varying environments. Insects living in seasonal environments are valuable model systems for testing the existence and form of PAR. Previous manipulations of the larval and the adult environments of the butterfly Bicyclus anynana have shown that individuals that were food restricted during the larval stage coped better with forced flight during the adult stage compared to those with optimal conditions in the larval stage. Here, we describe a state-dependent energy allocation model, which we use to test whether such a response to food restriction could be adaptive in nature where this butterfly exhibits seasonal cycles. The results from the model confirm the responses obtained in our previous experimental work and show how such an outcome was facilitated by resource allocation patterns to the thorax during the pupal stage. We conclude that for B. anynana, early-stage cues can direct development toward a better adapted phenotype later in life and, therefore, that a PAR has evolved in this species
    The scent of inbreeding: a male sex pheromone betrays inbred males
    Bergen, E. van; Brakefield, P.M. ; Heuskin, S. ; Zwaan, B.J. ; Nieberding, C.M. - \ 2013
    Proceedings of the Royal Society. B: Biological Sciences 280 (2013)1758. - ISSN 0962-8452
    butterfly bicyclus-anynana - mate-choice - drosophila-melanogaster - male courtship - genetic load - teleogryllus-commodus - morphological traits - life-history - depression - heterozygosity
    Inbreeding depression results from mating among genetically related individuals and impairs reproductive success. The decrease in male mating success is usually attributed to an impact on multiple fitness-related traits that reduce the general condition of inbred males. Here, we find that the production of the male sex pheromone is reduced significantly by inbreeding in the butterfly Bicyclus anynana. Other traits indicative of the general condition, including flight performance, are also negatively affected in male butterflies by inbreeding. Yet, we unambiguously show that only the production of male pheromones affects mating success. Thus, this pheromone signal informs females about the inbreeding status of their mating partners. We also identify the specific chemical component (hexadecanal) probably responsible for the decrease in male mating success. Our results advocate giving increased attention to olfactory communication as a major causal factor of mate-choice decisions and sexual selection
    Quantitative genetic analysis of responses to larval food limitation in a polyphenic butterfly indicates environment- and trait-specific effects
    Saastamoinen, M. ; Brommer, J.E. ; Brakefield, P.M. ; Zwaan, B.J. - \ 2013
    Ecology and Evolution 3 (2013)10. - ISSN 2045-7758 - p. 3576 - 3589.
    bicyclus-anynana - phenotypic plasticity - life-history - adaptive responses - reaction norms - evolution - growth - genotype - evolvability - canalization
    Different components of heritability, including genetic variance (VG), are influenced by environmental conditions. Here, we assessed phenotypic responses of life-history traits to two different developmental conditions, temperature and food limitation. The former represents an environment that defines seasonal polyphenism in our study organism, the tropical butterfly Bicyclus anynana, whereas the latter represents a more unpredictable environment. We quantified heritabilities using restricted maximum likelihood (REML) procedures within an “Information Theoretical” framework in a full-sib design. Whereas development time, pupal mass, and resting metabolic rate showed no genotype-by-environment interaction for genetic variation, for thorax ratio and fat percentage the heritability increased under the cool temperature, dry season environment. Additionally, for fat percentage heritability estimates increased under food limitation. Hence, the traits most intimately related to polyphenism in B. anynana show the most environmental-specific heritabilities as well as some indication of cross-environmental genetic correlations. This may reflect a footprint of natural selection and our future research is aimed to uncover the genes and processes involved in this through studying season and condition-dependent gene expression
    Releases of a natural flightless strain of the ladybird beetle Adalia bipunctata reduce aphid-born honeydew beneath urban lime trees
    Lommen, S.T.E. ; Holness, T.C. ; Kuik, A.J. van; Jong, P.W. de; Brakefield, P.M. - \ 2013
    BioControl 58 (2013)2. - ISSN 1386-6141 - p. 195 - 204.
    eucallipterus-tiliae homoptera - axyridis pallas coleoptera - harmonia-axyridis - biological-control - augmentative releases - tiliaxvulgaris hayne - northern california - apple orchards - wood formation - open fields
    Aphids can cause major environmental problems in urban areas. One important problem is the annual outbreaks of lime aphid, Eucallipterus tiliae (L.) (Hemiptera: Aphididae), which spoil the surroundings of lime trees by depositing honeydew. To date no environmentally friendly method has been demonstrated to yield effective control of lime aphids. Attempts are made in some cities to control lime aphids by releasing larvae of the native two-spot ladybird beetle, Adalia bipunctata (L.) (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae). However, it is known that adult ladybird beetles disperse soon after release, and there is little indication they provide control of the aphids. Here, we demonstrate experimentally that releases of a flightless strain of A. bipunctata, obtained from natural variation in wing length, can reduce the impact of honeydew from lime aphid outbreaks on two species of lime in an urban environment. Both larvae and adult beetles were released, and we discuss the contribution of the flightless adults to the decline in honeydew.
    Exploring and exploiting natural variation in the wings of a predatory ladybird beetle for biological control
    Lommen, S.T.E. - \ 2013
    Leiden University. Promotor(en): P.M. Brakefield, co-promotor(en): Peter de Jong. - S.l. : s.n. - ISBN 9789053356821 - 176
    adalia - adalia bipunctata - coccinellidae - organismen ingezet bij biologische bestrijding - vleugels - roofinsecten - morfologie - adalia - adalia bipunctata - coccinellidae - biological control agents - wings - predatory insects - morphology
    The central theme of this PhD thesis is natural variation in the wing length of the predatory two-spot ladybird beetle, Adalia bipunctata. ‘Wingless’ individuals of this species occur occasionally. They possess truncated wing covers and flight wings and cannot fly, but the extent of the reduction is highly variable between individuals. At one hand, I take a multidisciplinary experimental approach to study the causes and consequences of this variation in an evolutionary context. Genetic and developmental studies show that it is regulated by several polymorphic genes, and results from gene-environment interactions affecting the growth of the larval wing discs. Studies on life-history traits and mating behaviour provide no evidence that winglessness is an adaptive trait in this ladybird. However, they reveal a function of the wing covers in survival and mating behaviour. On the other hand, I examine the use of wingless ladybirds in the biological control of aphids, since winged ladybirds are not effective when flying away soon after release. I show that wingless morphs have the potential to improve biocontrol efficacy. I then suggest that mass-rearing of this less fit morph could be improve by manipulation of the wing length. Altogether, this thesis interlinks the fields of fundamental (evolutionary) biology and applied biological control.
    The predictive adaptive response: modeling the life history evolution of the butterfly, Bicyclus anynana, in seasonal environments
    Heuvel, J. van den; Saastamoinen, M. ; Brakefield, P.M. ; Kirkwood, T.B.L. ; Zwaan, B.J. - \ 2012
    Wageningen UR
    ecology - evolutionary - evolution - physiological - life history - modeling - individual based - stochastic spatial - phenotypic plasticy - polymorphism - resource allocation - theory - trade offs
    A predictive adaptive response (PAR) is a type of developmental plasticity where the response to an environmental cue is not immediately advantageous but instead is later in life. The PAR is a way for organisms to maximize fitness in varying environments. Insects living in seasonal environments are valuable model systems for testing the existence and form of PAR. Previous manipulations of the larval and the adult environments of the butterfly Bicyclus anynana have shown that individuals that were food restricted during the larval stage coped better with forced flight during the adult stage compared to those with optimal conditions in the larval stage. Here, we describe a state-dependent energy allocation model, which we use to test whether such a response to food restriction could be adaptive in nature where this butterfly exhibits seasonal cycles. The results from the model confirm the responses obtained in our previous experimental work and show how such an outcome was facilitated by resource allocation patterns to the thorax during the pupal stage. We conclude that for B. anynana, early-stage cues can direct development toward a better adapted phenotype later in life and, therefore, that a PAR has evolved in this species.
    Genetic linkage between melanism and winglessness in the ladybird beetle Adalia bipunctata
    Lommen, S.T.E. ; Jong, P.W. de; Koops, K.G. ; Brakefield, P.M. - \ 2012
    Genetica 140 (2012)4-6. - ISSN 0016-6707 - p. 229 - 233.
    2-spot ladybird - phenotypic plasticity - thermal melanism - geographical variation - harmonia-axyridis - coleoptera - coccinellidae - consequences - polymorphism - evolution
    We report a case of genetic linkage between the two major loci underlying different wing traits in the two-spot ladybird beetle, Adalia bipunctata (L.) (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae): melanism and winglessness. The loci are estimated to be 38.8 cM apart on one of the nine autosomes. This linkage is likely to facilitate the unravelling of the genetics of these traits. These traits are of interest in the context of the evolution of intraspecific morphological diversity, and for the application of ladybird beetles in biological control programs.
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