Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

A chemosensory protein gene Si-CSP1 associated with necrophoric behavior in red imported fire ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae).

Abstract

Necrophoric behavior is essential to colony health in social insects. Little is known about the genes that are responsible for necrophoric behavior. Here, we show that a chemosensory protein gene Si-CSP1 was expressed significantly higher in the antennae than in other tissues such as the legs and heads of Solenopsis invicta Buren workers. Furthermore, Si-CSP1-silenced workers moved significantly fewer corpses of their nestmates than normal workers. Finally, Si-CSP1-silenced workers exhibited weaker antennal responses to oleic acid and linoleic acid than controls. These results suggest that Si-CSP1 functions by sensing oleic acid and linoleic acid associated with dead colony members and regulating the necrophoric behavior of workers in S. invicta.