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A response to Pennisi - “How do gut microbiomes help herbivores”, a hint into next-generation biocontrol solutions

Authors
Type
Published Article
Journal
Rethinking Ecology
Publisher
Pensoft Publishers
Publication Date
May 10, 2017
Volume
1
Identifiers
DOI: 10.3897/rethinkingecology.1.12932
Source
MyScienceWork
License
Green

Abstract

In a world where invasive invertebrate species can significantly compromise food security and where a dwindling range of synthetic pesticides remains our principal line of defence, testing a new invasion ecology hypothesis and understanding what makes a phytophagous insect invasive should be regarded as high priority research. Recent advances in microbiology strongly support the crucial and effective role of the gut microbiome in insect growth, development and, most importantly, environmental adaptation to their host plants. On the basis of recent literature, and following Elizabeth Pennisi’s article published in the journal Science, we hypothesis that gut microbiome could be a critical determinant of invasion success in phytophagous insects, and that the uncovering of common traits in the gut microbiome of invasive insects, a “gut microbiome invasiveness signature”, would open new avenues of research towards next-generation biocontrol solutions.

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