Not one odour but two: A new model for nestmate recognition.

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State: Public
Version: Final published version
Serval ID
serval:BIB_6955DD9383B0
Type
Article: article from journal or magazin.
Collection
Publications
Title
Not one odour but two: A new model for nestmate recognition.
Journal
Journal of Theoretical Biology
Author(s)
Newey P.
ISSN
1095-8541 (Electronic)
ISSN-L
0022-5193
Publication state
Published
Issued date
2011
Peer-reviewed
Oui
Volume
270
Number
1
Pages
7-12
Language
english
Notes
Publication types: Journal Article ; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov'tPublication Status: ppublish
Abstract
Recognition systems play a key role in a range of biological processes, including mate choice, immune defence and altruistic behaviour. Social insects provide an excellent model for studying recognition systems because workers need to discriminate between nestmates and non-nestmates, enabling them to direct altruistic behaviour towards closer kin and to repel potential invaders. However, the level of aggression directed towards conspecific intruders can vary enormously, even among workers within the same colony. This is usually attributed to differences in the aggression thresholds of individuals or to workers having different roles within the colony. Recent evidence from the weaver ant Oecophylla smaragdina suggests that this does not tell the whole story. Here I propose a new model for nestmate recognition based on a vector template derived from both the individual's innate odour and the shared colony odour. This model accounts for the recent findings concerning weaver ants, and also provides an alternative explanation for why the level of aggression expressed by a colony decreases as the diversity within the colony increases, even when odour is well-mixed. The model makes additional predictions that are easily tested, and represents a significant advance in our conceptualisation of recognition systems.
Keywords
Aggression/physiology, Algorithms, Animal Communication, Animals, Ants/physiology, Computer Simulation, Genetic Variation/physiology, Models, Biological, Odors/analysis
Pubmed
Web of science
Open Access
Yes
Create date
24/11/2010 7:26
Last modification date
20/08/2019 14:24
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