[Taxacom] Why insects are so diverse?

Bob Mesibov mesibov at southcom.com.au
Fri Jan 15 21:04:28 CST 2010


Every once in a while I stumble across a paper that gives me an 'Uh oh...' reaction. That's 'Uh oh...' as in 'Hmm, if that's true and more common than we now know about, we need to rewrite a few textbooks.' The latest paper to give me the 'Uh oh...' is this one:

http://cshprotocols.cshlp.org/cgi/content/abstract/2009/10/pdb.prot5312

and its companion

http://www.plosone.org/article/info:doi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0004425

I'd already thought that if Wolbachia could shift bits of the host genome from one species to another, then it was a better lateral-gene-transfer agent than an infective virus. Now comes the thought that by reinforcing species barriers, Wolbachia might be *driving* arthropod evolution. Or should that be 'arthropod+Wolbachia evolution'?
-- 
Dr Robert Mesibov
Honorary Research Associate
Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery, and
School of Zoology, University of Tasmania
Home contact: PO Box 101, Penguin, Tasmania, Australia 7316
(03) 64371195; 61 3 64371195
Website: http://www.qvmag.tas.gov.au/mesibov.html




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