Endocrine signals in caste determination of a primitive termite, Mastotermes darwiniensis

GK 678 A1

From 06/2004 to 06/2007

Principal Investigator: Klaus H. Hoffmann, Manfred Kaib, Matthias W. Lorenz

Termites are eusocial insects and divided into the fertile (queen and king) and the sterile castes (workers or soldiers). Caste determination of individual termites is assumed to be governed by the juvenile hormone titre (JH) in the hemolymph and its regulation. The aim of this project is to contribute to the understanding of endocrinological and molecular factors governing caste determination. Mastotermes darwiniensis (Mastotermitidae) is used as a model system. This taxon is a most ancestral termite, closely related to cockroaches, and a sister group of all other living termite taxa.

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