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The role of neuropeptide F in a transition to parental care

Chris Cunningham Orcid Logo, Kathryn VanDenHeuvel, Daven B. Khana, Elizabeth C. McKinney, Allen J. Moore

Biology Letters, Volume: 12, Issue: 4, Start page: 20160158

Swansea University Author: Chris Cunningham Orcid Logo

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DOI (Published version): 10.1098/rsbl.2016.0158

Abstract

The genetics of complex social behaviour can be dissected by examining the genetic influences of component pathways, which can be predicted based on expected evolutionary precursors. Here, we examine how gene expression in a pathway that influences the motivation to eat is altered during parental ca...

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Published in: Biology Letters
ISSN: 1744-9561 1744-957X
Published: The Royal Society 2016
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URI: https://cronfa.swan.ac.uk/Record/cronfa32685
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Abstract: The genetics of complex social behaviour can be dissected by examining the genetic influences of component pathways, which can be predicted based on expected evolutionary precursors. Here, we examine how gene expression in a pathway that influences the motivation to eat is altered during parental care that involves direct feeding of larvae. We examine the expression of neuropeptide F, and its receptor, in the burying beetle Nicrophorus vespilloides, which feeds pre-digested carrion to its begging larvae. We found that the npf receptor was greatly reduced during active care. Our research provides evidence that feeding behaviour was a likely target during the evolution of parental care in N. vespilloides. Moreover, dissecting complex behaviours into ethologically distinct sub-behaviours is a productive way to begin to target the genetic mechanisms involved in the evolution of complex behaviours.
College: College of Science
Issue: 4
Start Page: 20160158