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ARS Home » Plains Area » College Station, Texas » Southern Plains Agricultural Research Center » Food and Feed Safety Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #318119

Title: Forensic microbiology from an entomological perspective

item TOMBERLIN, JEFFERY - Texas A&M University
item Crippen, Tawni - Tc

Submitted to: Microbiologist
Publication Type: Trade Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/6/2015
Publication Date: 9/1/2015
Citation: Tomberlin, J., Crippen, T.L. 2015. Forensic microbiology from an entomological perspective. Microbiologist. 16:22-25.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: In a community, bacteria communicate through chemical messaging and quorum sensing. Some quorum sensing molecules, like indole, are known arthropod attractants. Interestingly, this bacterial intracellular signaling molecule is also a precursor to tryptophan, which is used in the production of the neurotransmitter serotonin in other organisms. Janzen theorized that microbes manipulate the decomposition process to deter other necrophagous fauna in order to compete for utilization of the resource (Janzen 1977). This article discusses the interkingdom communications effects of bacterial metabolic compounds on the behavior of other organisms, such as arthropods, which encounter them.