ERIC Number: EJ1018743
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013-Aug
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
Steroid Hormone (20-Hydroxyecdysone) Modulates the Acquisition of Aversive Olfactory Memories in Pollen Forager Honeybees
Geddes, Lisa H.; McQuillan, H. James; Aiken, Alastair; Vergoz, Vanina; Mercer, Alison R.
Learning & Memory, v20 n8 p399-409 Aug 2013
Here, we examine effects of the steroid hormone, 20-hydroxyecdysone (20-E), on associative olfactory learning in the honeybee, "Apis mellifera." 20-E impaired the bees' ability to associate odors with punishment during aversive conditioning, but did not interfere with their ability to associate odors with a food reward (appetitive learning). The steroid had a significant impact also on the expression of amine-receptor genes in centers of the brain involved in the formation and recall of associative olfactory memories (mushroom bodies). 20-E increased expression of the dopamine receptor gene, "Amdop2," and reduced the expression of the putative dopamine/ecdysone receptor gene, "Amgpcr19." Interestingly, "Amgpcr19" tended to be highly expressed in the brains of foragers that exhibited strong aversive learning, but expressed at lower levels in bees that performed well in appetitive learning assays. In 2-d-old bees, transcript levels of the same gene could be reduced by queen mandibular pheromone, a pheromone that blocks aversive learning in young worker bees. As ecdysteroid levels rise to a peak ~2 d after adult emergence and then fall to low levels in foragers, we examined aversive learning also in young worker bees. Aversive learning performance in 2-d-old bees was consistently poor. The results of this study indicate that learning in honeybees can be modulated by ecdysteroids. They highlight, in addition, a potential involvement of the putative dopamine/ecdysone receptor, "Am"GPCR19, in hormonal regulation of associative olfactory learning in the honeybee.
Descriptors: Olfactory Perception, Entomology, Biochemistry, Punishment, Conditioning, Associative Learning, Genetics, Brain Hemisphere Functions, Recall (Psychology)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A