Pathophysiology and transmission of Thelohania solenopsae in the red imported fire ants, Solenopsis invicta
MetadataShow full item record
Thelohania solenopsae are intracellular pathogens found in the red imported fire ant, Solenopsis invicta. These pathogens cause detrimental effects to their fire ant hosts. The present study revealed that the midgut and the meconium materials from pupating fourth instar larvae were possible vehicles for the horizontal transmission of the disease. The pathogen was further found to cause a reduction of humeral proteins. In SDS-PAGE stained with silver, several proteins were observed only in controls but not in infected fire ant queens. Different queens were found to have variable proteins reduced due to infection of this pathogen. Furthermore, vitellogenin titers were found to be significantly reduced in infected fire ant queens, although the infection rates of the fat body cells was found to be less than 20%. Finally, although the pathogens did not directly induce apoptosis in infected cells, there were more infected cells undergoing apoptosis than uninfected cells. There was no evidence to support the idea that infected fat body cells became more resistant to apoptosis inducers.
red imported fire ants
Chen, Johnny Shou-Chung (2004). Pathophysiology and transmission of Thelohania solenopsae in the red imported fire ants, Solenopsis invicta. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A&M University. Texas A&M University. Available electronically from