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Ant Genomics & the Social Insect Behavior Ontology RCN Lightning Talk 2/25/2011 Christopher D. Smith Ph.D. Assistant Professor Biology Associate Director,

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Presentation on theme: "Ant Genomics & the Social Insect Behavior Ontology RCN Lightning Talk 2/25/2011 Christopher D. Smith Ph.D. Assistant Professor Biology Associate Director,"— Presentation transcript:

1 Ant Genomics & the Social Insect Behavior Ontology RCN Lightning Talk 2/25/2011 Christopher D. Smith Ph.D. Assistant Professor Biology Associate Director, Center for Computing for Life Sciences Dept. of Biology San Francisco State University San Francisco, CA Office HH518: x52505

2 Social Insects Are Excellent Models to Study the Epigenetics of Development & Behavior Abouheif & Wray Evolution of the Gene Network Underlying Wing Polyphenism in Ants Science 12 July 2002: Vol no. 5579, pp JH = Juvenile Hormone Wheeler et. al. Expression profiles during honeybee caste determination GenomeBiology2000, 2(1):research Fertile Stay in nest Long-lived Larger Sterile Leave Nest Short-lived Aggressive Smaller, no wings

3 ‘Covergent’ Behaviors in Ants & Bees Extensive literature of natural history & behavior Well- developed behavior assays MANY genomes, methylomes, developmental timecourses online

4 Behaviors can be linked to SNPs Africanized bees –Pursue Enemy 10-30x further –More reactive to color, movement –4-10x stinging –Disengage less –Alert quickly –Larger defense perimeter Using comparative annotation we can link ‘Africanized’ SNPs to gene and regulatory annotations –e.g. Dopamine receptor mutations DRD4 –e.g. Serotonin promoter polymorphism hSlc6a4,dSerT Disengagement Perception Orientation 1 o Discrimination or Identification Alert Recruitment Approach 2 o Discrimination or Identification Threat ATTACK! Adapted from Breed & Hunt Annu. Rev. Entolom. 49:271-98

5 The Social Insect Behavior Ontology(SIBO) © SmithLab 2007 Goal is to use natural language to find chemicals & anatomy associated with behaviors across eusocial insects to gain insight on evolution of eusocial organization Anatomy Based on Bolton Chemicals linked to CheBI

6 2nd Goal: Dissect Genetic & Epigenetic Mechanisms Underlying Behavior Across Taxa Most genes associated with human behavioral disease have poorly defined mechanism We want to RNAi/overexpress candidates in ants and use video tracking to see behavior effects NIH: SC2 GM084888


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