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Association between host wing morphology polymorphism and Wolbachia infection in Vollenhovia emeryi (Hymenoptera: Myrmicinae).

Authors
  • Noh, Pureum1, 2, 3
  • Oh, Seung-Yoon4
  • Park, Soyeon2, 5
  • Kwon, Taesung6
  • Kim, Yonghwan7
  • Choe, Jae Chun1, 2
  • Jeong, Gilsang1, 2
  • 1 Division of EcoScience Ewha Womans University Seoul Korea. , (North Korea)
  • 2 National Institute of Ecology Seochun-gun Korea. , (North Korea)
  • 3 Present address: Herbal Medicine Resources Research Center Korea Institute of Oriental Medicine Naju Korea. , (North Korea)
  • 4 School of Biological Sciences Seoul National University Seoul Korea. , (North Korea)
  • 5 Interdisciplinary Program of EcoCreative The Graduate School Ewha Womans University Seoul Korea. , (North Korea)
  • 6 Division of Forest Ecology Korea Forest Research Institute Seoul Korea. , (North Korea)
  • 7 Department of Physics Konkuk University Seoul Korea. , (North Korea)
Type
Published Article
Journal
Ecology and Evolution
Publisher
Wiley (John Wiley & Sons)
Publication Date
Aug 01, 2020
Volume
10
Issue
16
Pages
8827–8837
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1002/ece3.6582
PMID: 32884660
Source
Medline
Keywords
Language
English
License
Unknown

Abstract

Many eusocial insects, including ants, show complex colony structures, distributions, and reproductive strategies. In the ant Vollenhovia emeryi Wheeler (Hymenoptera: Myrmicinae), queens and males are produced clonally, while sterile workers arise sexually, unlike other ant species and Hymenopteran insects in general. Furthermore, there is a wing length polymorphism in the queen caste. Despite its evolutionary remarkable traits, little is known about the population structure of this ant species, which may provide insight into its unique reproductive mode and polymorphic traits. We performed in-depth analyses of ant populations from Korea, Japan, and North America using three mitochondrial genes (COI, COII, and Cytb). The long-winged (L) morph is predominant in Korean populations, and the short-winged (S) morph is very rare. Interestingly, all L morphs were infected with Wolbachia, while all Korean S morphs lacked Wolbachia, demonstrating a association between a symbiont and a phenotypic trait. A phylogenetic analysis revealed that the S morph is derived from the L morph. We propose that the S morph is associated with potential resistance to Wolbachia infection and that Wolbachia infection does not influence clonal reproduction (as is the case in other ant species). © 2020 The Authors. Ecology and Evolution published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

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