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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Maricopa, Arizona » U.S. Arid Land Agricultural Research Center » Pest Management and Biocontrol Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #353283

Research Project: Ecologically Based Pest Management in Western Crops Such as Cotton

Location: Pest Management and Biocontrol Research

Title: Biogenic amines shift during the pre-reproductive to reproductive transition in the small carpenter bee, Ceratina calcarata

Author
item COOK, CHELSEA - ARIZONA STATE UNIVERSITY
item LAWSON, SARAH - UNIVERSITY OF NEW HAMPSHIRE
item Brent, Colin
item REHAN, SANDRA - UNIVERSITY OF NEW HAMPSHIRE

Submitted to: Apidologie
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/10/2018
Publication Date: 3/21/2019
Publication URL: http://handle.nal.usda.gov/10113/6332561
Citation: Cook, C.N., Lawson, S.P., Brent, C.S., Rehan, S.M. 2019. Biogenic amines shift during the pre-reproductive to reproductive transition in the small carpenter bee, Ceratina calcarata. Apidologie. 50:90-99.

Interpretive Summary: The shift from solitary to social living has been studied on many levels with a particular focus on individual versus group behaviors and selective pressures leading to this major evolutionary transition. The underlying anatomy and physiology that may have facilitated this change is understudied, especially in incipiently social species. Here, we examined the bee, Ceratina calcarata, finding that as females transition from a solitary state to one in which they are producing and caring for offspring, enhanced ovarian development and activity is accompanied by an increase in brain levels of the neurotransmitters octopamine and serotonin. No difference was found for dopamine or tyramine. The results suggest that these neurotransmitters may play an integral role in the transition towards reproduction and the accompanying social interactions with offspring.

Technical Abstract: The shift from solitary to social living has been studied on many levels with a particular focus on individual versus group behaviors and selective pressures leading to this major evolutionary transition. The underlying anatomy and physiology that may have facilitated this change is understudied, especially in incipiently social species. Here, we examined the bee, Ceratina calcarata, finding that as females transition from a pre-reproductive solitary state to a subsocial nest foundress state, ovarian development is accompanied by an increase in brain levels of octopamine and serotonin. For comparison, we provide the first characterization of biogenic amines in the brains of males. These results demonstrate the essential role of biogenic amines in the transition of reproductive states in a bee on the brink of sociality and provide a deeper understanding of how biogenic amines may have influenced the evolution of social behavior.