The organization of the antennal lobe correlates not only with phylogenetic relationship, but also life history: A basal hymenopteran as exemplar

Andrew M. Dacks, Alan J. Nighorn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

8 Scopus citations

Abstract

The structure of the brain is a consequence of selective pressures and the ancestral brain structures modified by those pressures. The Hymenoptera are one of the most behaviorally complex insect orders, and the olfactory system of honeybees (one of the most derived members) has been extensively studied. To understand the context in which the olfactory system of the Hymenoptera evolved, we performed a variety of immunocytochemical and anatomical labeling techniques on the antennal lobes (ALs) of one of its most primitive members, the sawflies, to provide a comparison between the honeybee and other insect model species. The olfactory receptor neurons project from the antennae to fill the entire glomerular volume but do not form distinct tracts as in the honeybee. Labeling of projection neurons revealed 5 output tracts similar to those in moths and immunolabeling for several transmitters revealed distinct populations of local interneurons and centrifugal neurons that were also similar to moths. There were, however, no histaminergic or dopaminergic AL neurons. The similarities between sawflies and moths suggest that along with the great radiation and increased complexity of behavioral repertoire of the Hymenoptera, there were extensive modifications of AL structure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)209-220
Number of pages12
JournalChemical Senses
Volume36
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 20 2011

Keywords

  • Anatomy
  • Antennal lobes
  • Olfaction
  • Sawfly

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Sensory Systems
  • Physiology (medical)
  • Behavioral Neuroscience

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