Tracheal Respiration in Insects Visualized with Synchrotron X-ray Imaging

  title={Tracheal Respiration in Insects Visualized with Synchrotron X-ray Imaging},
  author={Mark W. Westneat and Oliver Betz and Richard W. Blob and Kamel Fezzaa and W. James Cooper and Wah‐Keat Lee},
  pages={558 - 560}
Insects are known to exchange respiratory gases in their system of tracheal tubes by using either diffusion or changes in internal pressure that are produced through body motion or hemolymph circulation. However, the inability to see inside living insects has limited our understanding of their respiration mechanisms. We used a synchrotron beam to obtain x-ray videos of living, breathing insects. Beetles, crickets, and ants exhibited rapid cycles of tracheal compression and expansion in the head… 

Dynamics of tracheal compression in the horned passalus beetle.

It is suggested that tracheal compression may function to drive flow within the body, facilitating internal mixing of respiratory gases and ventilation of distal regions of thetracheal system.

The role of abdominal pumping in tracheal tube compressions in the darkling beetle

Evidence is provided of a mechanistic linkage between abdominal movements and tracheal tube compressions in the ground beetle, Zophobas morio, and two distinct abdominal movements differentiated by the synchrony or lack of synchrony of abdominal tergite movement.

Patterns of Tracheal Compression in the Thorax of the Ground Beetle, Platynus decentis

Insects breathe using a system of tracheal tubes that ramify throughout the body. Rhythmic tracheal compression (RTC), the periodic collapse and reinflation of parts of the system, has been

Tracheal compression in pupae of the beetle Zophobas morio

It is shown that the kinematics of abdominal pumping can be used to infer the status of the spiracles and internal behaviour of the tracheal system, suggesting that the major function of the abdominal pump is not respiratory.

Insects breathe discontinuously to avoid oxygen toxicity

It is suggested that the cyclical pattern of open and closed spiracles observed in resting insects is a necessary consequence of the need to rid the respiratory system of accumulated CO2, followed by theneed to reduce oxygen toxicity.

Synchrotron imaging of the grasshopper tracheal system: morphological and physiological components of tracheal hypermetry.

This study uses synchrotron imaging to demonstrate that tracheal hypermetry in developing grasshoppers (Schistocerca americana) is due to increases in air sacs and tracheae and occurs in all three body segments, providing evidence against the hypothesis that hypermetry isdue to gaining flight ability.

In vivo visualization of liquid-feeding phenomena of a butterfly

The dynamic motion of the pump system in a butterfly was in vivo visualized using synchrotron X-ray micro-imaging technique to analyze the liquid-feeding mechanism.

Terrestrial Insects with Tracheae Breath by Actively Regulating Ventilatory Movements: Physiological Similarities to Humans

The results confirm the previous findings of human-like insect breathing, based on convective inhalation and exhalation of air driven by the respectively decreased or increased haemocoelic pressure and confirm the control of insect respiration by an autonomic (brain independent), neuroendocrine system known as the coelopulse system.

A micro-CT approach for determination of insect respiratory volume.




Air Ventilation by Recoil Aspiration in Polypterid Fishes

High-speed x-ray cine films synchronized with intra-pleuroperitoneal pressure measurements show that polypterid fishes aspiration breathe by the deformation and recoil of their bony-scaled integument, the first evidence for aspiration breathing in any lower vertebrate.

Augmented respiration in a flying insect

  • Komai
  • Biology
    The Journal of experimental biology
  • 1998
The results suggest that this insect effectively uses muscle movement, which increases the frequency and stroke volume of ventilation, to augment gas exchange during flight.

A New Look at Insect Respiration

A novel thermographic method has been used for simultaneously monitoring the passage of air through up to eight spiracles of endopterygote insects and revealed active regulation of inspirations and expirations through one or two spiracles while the majority remained hermetically closed for prolonged periods.

The Insects: Structure and Function

The aim of this monograph is to clarify the role of pheromones and chemicals in the lives of Insects and to propose a strategy to address their role in the food web.

Tongues, tentacles and trunks: the biomechanics of movement in muscular‐hydrostats

The means by which muscular-hydrostats produce elongation, shortening, bending and torsion are discussed.

Abdominal movements, heartbeats and gas exchange in pupae of the Colorado potato beetle, Leptinotarsa decemlineata

The rhythms of abdominal movements, heartbeats and gas exchange in the pupae of Leptiontarsa decemlineata (Say) were recorded simultaneously using an electrolytic respirometer and infrared gas

Function of the intercostal muscles in trotting dogs: ventilation or locomotion?

  • D. Carrier
  • Biology, Engineering
    The Journal of experimental biology
  • 1996
Measurement of ventilatory airflow at the mouth and activity of the fourth and ninth intercostal muscles in four dogs trotting on a treadmill suggest that, in dogs, locomotion is the dominant function of the interosseous portions of theIntercostal Muscle, however, the parasternal inter costal muscles are primarily inspiratory in function.

Shark Skin: Function in Locomotion

Locomotory muscles attach to the skin which is thus a whole-body exotendon whose mechanical advantage in transmitting muscular contraction is greater than that of the endoskeleton.

Mechanics of the fast-start: muscle function and the role of intramuscular pressure in the escape behavior of amia calva and polypterus palmas

A model of IMP production is developed that incorporates myomere geometry, the concept of constant-volume muscular hydrostats, the relationship between fiber angle and muscle force, and the forces that muscle fibers produce and indicates that elevated muscle pressure is a mechanism of stiffening the body and functions in force transmission during the escape response.