A look into the invisible: Ultraviolet-B sensitivity in an insect (Caliothrips phaseoli) revealed through a behavioural action spectrum

Authors
Mazza, Carlos Alberto; Izaguirre, Miriam Mercedes; Curiale, Carlos Javier; Ballare, Carlos Luis
Publication Year
2010
Language
English
Format
article
Status
Published version
Description
Caliothrips phaseoli, a phytophagous insect, detects and responds to solar ultraviolet-B radiation (UV-B; λ ≤ 315 nm) under field conditions. A highly specific mechanism must be present in the thrips visual system in order to detect this narrow band of solar radiation, which is at least 30 times less abundant than the UV-A (315-400 nm), to which many insects are sensitive. We constructed an action spectrum of thrips responses to light by studying their behavioural reactions to monochromatic irradiation under confinement conditions. Thrips were maximally sensitive to wavelengths between 290 and 330 nm; human-visible wavelengths (λ ≥ 400 nm) failed to elicit any response. All but six ommatidia of the thrips compound eye were highly fluorescent when exposed to UV-A of wavelengths longer than 330 nm. We hypothesized that the fluorescent compound acts as an internal filter, preventing radiation with λ > 330 nm from reaching the photoreceptor cells. Calculations based on the putative filter transmittance and a visual pigment template of λmax =360 nm produced a sensitivity spectrum that was strikingly similar to the action spectrum of UV-induced behavioural response. These results suggest that specific UV-B vision in thrips is achieved by a standard UV-A photoreceptor and a sharp cut-off internal filter that blocks longer UV wavelengths in the majority of the ommatidia.
Fil: Mazza, Carlos Alberto. Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas. Oficina de Coordinación Administrativa Parque Centenario. Instituto de Investigaciones Fisiológicas y Ecológicas Vinculadas a la Agricultura. Universidad de Buenos Aires. Facultad de Agronomía; Argentina
Fil: Izaguirre, Miriam Mercedes. Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas. Oficina de Coordinación Administrativa Parque Centenario. Instituto de Investigaciones Fisiológicas y Ecológicas Vinculadas a la Agricultura. Universidad de Buenos Aires. Facultad de Agronomía; Argentina
Fil: Curiale, Carlos Javier. Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas. Centro Científico Tecnológico Conicet - Patagonia Norte; Argentina. Comisión Nacional de Energía Atómica. Gerencia de Área de Aplicaciones de la Tecnología Nuclear. Departamento de Radiobiología; Argentina
Fil: Ballare, Carlos Luis. Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas. Oficina de Coordinación Administrativa Parque Centenario. Instituto de Investigaciones Fisiológicas y Ecológicas Vinculadas a la Agricultura. Universidad de Buenos Aires. Facultad de Agronomía; Argentina
Subject
INSECT BEHAVIOUR
INSECT VISION
UV-B
HERBIVORY
THRIPS
Otras Ciencias Biológicas
Ciencias Biológicas
CIENCIAS NATURALES Y EXACTAS
Access level
Restricted access
License
https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.5/ar/
Repository
CONICET Digital (CONICET)
Institution
Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas
OAI Identifier
oai:ri.conicet.gov.ar:11336/73557