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Data from: Genetic and phenotypic relationships between immune defense, melanism and life history traits at different temperatures and sexes in Tenebrio molitor

Citation

Rantala, Markus J. et al. (2013), Data from: Genetic and phenotypic relationships between immune defense, melanism and life history traits at different temperatures and sexes in Tenebrio molitor, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.bn00s

Abstract

Insect cuticle melanism is linked to a number of life-history traits, and a positive relationship is hypothesized between melanism and the strength of immune defense. In this study, the phenotypic and genetic relationships between cuticular melanization, innate immune defense, individual development time and body size were studied in the mealworm beetle (Tenebrio molitor) using three different temperatures with a half-sib breeding design. Both innate immune defense and cuticle darkness were higher in females than males, and a positive correlation between the traits was found at the lowest temperature. The effect of temperature on all the measured traits was strong, with encapsulation ability and development time decreasing and cuticle darkness increasing with a rise in temperature, and body size showing a curved response. The analysis showed a highly integrated system sensitive to environmental change involving physiological, morphological and life-history traits.

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