Adrianne N. M. Bot

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The paired exocrine metapleural glands present in the large majority of ant species produce compounds with antibiotic properties. In the leaf-cutting ant, Acromyrmex octospinosus, the secretion consists of more than 20 different compounds and it has generally been assumed that the glands serve as a general defence against various infectious microbes of(More)
In Acromyrmex octospinosus leaf-cutting ants the metapleural glands produce an array of antibiotic compounds that serve as a general defence against unwanted microbes on the cuticle. Leaf-cutting ants also grow mutualistic Pseudonocardiaceae bacteria on their cuticle that produce antibiotics controlling a microfungal parasite of their fungus gardens.(More)
Division of labor in social groups is affected by the relative costs and benefits of conducting different tasks. However, most studies have examined the dynamics of division of labor, rather than the costs and benefits that presumably underlie the evolution of such systems. In social insects, division of labor may be simplistically described as a(More)
Parasites and pathogens often impose significant costs on their hosts. This is particularly true for social organisms, where the genetic structure of groups and the accumulation of contaminated waste facilitate disease transmission. In response, hosts have evolved many mechanisms of defence against parasites. Here we present evidence that Atta colombica, a(More)
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