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Wolbachia affect behavior and possibly reproductive compatibility but not thermoresistance, fecundity, and morphology in a novel transinfected host, Drosophila nigrosparsa

Citation

Detcharoen, Matsapume et al. (2021), Wolbachia affect behavior and possibly reproductive compatibility but not thermoresistance, fecundity, and morphology in a novel transinfected host, Drosophila nigrosparsa, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.0gb5mkkxp

Abstract

Wolbachia, intracellular endosymbionts, are estimated to infect about half of all arthropod species. These bacteria manipulate their hosts in various ways for their maximum benefits. The rising global temperature may accelerate species migration and, thus, horizontal transfer of Wolbachia may occur across species previously not in contact. We transinfected and then cured the alpine fly Drosophila nigrosparsa with Wolbachia strain wMel to study its effects on this species. We found low Wolbachia titer, possibly cytoplasmic incompatibility, and an increase in locomotion of both infected larvae and adults compared with cured ones. However, no change in fecundity, no impact on heat and cold tolerance, and no change in wing morphology were observed. Although Wolbachia increased locomotor activities in this species, we conclude that D. nigrosparsa may not benefit from the infection. Still, D. nigrosparsa can serve as a host for Wolbachia because vertical transmission is possible but may not be as high as in the native host of wMel, Drosophila melanogaster.