Venom Isosolenopsin A Delivers Rapid Knockdown of Fire Ant Competitors

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Eduardo G P FoxYong-Yue Lu


Fire ant venoms are composed of insecticidal alkaloids named solenopsins. Whilst species-specific differences are reported, little attention was given to caste-specific venom adaptations. The venom of fire ants queens has remained poorly studied. Founding queens must succeed in isolation in the field, where venom is bound to play a role against competitor species. The venoms of fire ant queens are strikingly similar across different species, in being mainly composed of the alkaloid isosolenopsin A, regardless of the chemical diversity of the worker caste. From assuming this pattern as the evolutionary result of stabilising trait selection, we hypothesise a shared mechanism explaining the conserved venom composition among the fire ant queens of different species. Here we report that fire ant queen venom and its major compounds are much quicker to neutralise competitor ants than the more diverse venoms of workers. Three representative competitor ant species sympatric with invasive fire ants were selected, exposed on the head to venoms from invasive fire ant workers and queens of two main invasive species, Solenopsis invicta and S. geminata. The venom diversity in the worker caste of these species represent extremes in the chemica...Continue Reading

Related Concepts

Analogs & derivatives
Ant Venoms
Scorpion Venoms
Reactive Oxygen Species

Related Feeds

BioRxiv & MedRxiv Preprints

BioRxiv and MedRxiv are the preprint servers for biology and health sciences respectively, operated by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. Here are the latest preprint articles (which are not peer-reviewed) from BioRxiv and MedRxiv.

Related Papers

Toxicon : Official Journal of the International Society on Toxinology
Eduardo G P FoxYijuan Xu
Toxicon : Official Journal of the International Society on Toxinology
H BaerF J James
Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology : Official Publication of the American College of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology
George HowellRobin Rockhold
© 2021 Meta ULC. All rights reserved