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Journal of Insect Physiology








Synganglia, salivary gland, midgut, ovary, fat body and muscle alone and in combination from the ixodid tick, Dermacentor variabilis (Say), or the argasid tick, Ornithodoros parkeri Cooley, were incubated in vitro in separate experiments with L-[methyl-3H]methionine and farnesoic acid or with [1-14C]acetate. Life stages examined in D. variabilis were 3 and 72 h old (after ecdysis) unfed nymphs, partially fed nymphs (18 and 72 h after attachment to the host), fully engorged nymphs (2 d after detachment from host), 3 and 72 h old (after eclosion) unfed females, partially fed unmated females (12–168 h after attachment to host) and mated replete females (2 d after detachment from the host). Those from O. parkeri were third and fourth stadium nymphs and female O. parkeri, 1–2 d after detachment. Corpora allata from Diploptera punctata, Periplaneta americana and Gromphadorina portentosa were used as positive controls in these experiments. No farnesol, methyl farnesoate, JH I, JH II, JH III, or JHIII bisepoxide was detected by radio HPLC from any tick analysis while JH III, methyl farnesoate, and farnesol were detected in the positive controls. To examine further for the presence of a tick, insect-juvenilizing agent, Galleria pupal–cuticle bioassays were conducted on lipid extracts from 10 and 15 d old eggs, unfed larvae (1–5 d after ecdysis), unfed nymphs (1–7 d after ecdysis), and partially fed, unmated female adults (completed slow feeding phase) of D. variabilis. Whole body extracts of fourth stadium D. punctata and JH III standard were used as positive controls. No juvenilizing activity in any of the tick extracts could be detected. Electron impact, gas chromatography–mass spectrometry of hemolymph extracts from fed, virgin (forcibly detached 7 d after attachment) and mated, replete (allowed to drop naturally) D. variabilis and fully engorged (1–2 d after detachment) O. parkeri females also failed to identify the common insect juvenile hormones. The same procedures were successful in the identification of JH III in hemolymph of fourth stadium D. punctata. Last stadium nymphal (female) O. parkeri implanted with synganglia from second nymphal instars underwent normal eclosion to the adult. The above studies in toto suggest that D. variabilis and O. parkeri do not have the ability to make the common insect juvenile hormones, and these juvenile hormones do not regulate tick metamorphosis or reproduction as hypothesized in the literature.


NOTE: This is the author’s final (post-print) version of a work that was published in Journal of Insect Physiology. The final version was published as:

Neese, P.A., Sonenshine, D.E., Kallapur, V.L., Apperson, C.S., & Roe, R.M. (2000). Absence of insect juvenile hormones in the American dog tick, Dermacentor veriabilis (say) (Acari:Ixodidae), and in Ornithodoros parkeri cooley (Acari:Argasidae). Journal of Insect Physiology, 46(4), 477-490. doi: 10.1016/S0022-1910(99)00134-1

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