Vitellogenin in the honey bee brain: Atypical localization of a reproductive protein that promotes longevity

Daniel Münch, Kate E. Ihle, Heli Salmela, Gro Amdam

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

18 Scopus citations

Abstract

In comparative gerontology, highly social insects such as honey bees (Apis mellifera) receive much attention due to very different and flexible aging patterns among closely related siblings. While experimental strategies that manipulate socio-environmental factors suggest a causative link between aging and social signals and behaviors, the molecular underpinnings of this linkage are less well understood. Here we study the atypical localization of the egg-yolk protein vitellogenin (Vg) in the brain of the honey bee. Vg is known to influence honey bee social regulation and aging rate. Our findings suggest that Vg immunoreactivity in the brain is specifically localized within the class of non-neuronal glial cells. We discuss how these results can help explain the socially-dependent aging rate of honey bees.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)103-108
Number of pages6
JournalExperimental Gerontology
Volume71
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 20 2015

Keywords

  • Aging
  • Glial cells
  • Insects
  • Lipid transport proteins

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aging
  • Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology
  • Endocrinology
  • Genetics
  • Molecular Biology

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