Skip to main content
Dryad logo

Data from: Different effects of paternal trans-generational immune priming on survival and immunity in step and genetic offspring

Citation

Eggert, Hendrik; Kurtz, Joachim; Diddens-de Buhr, Maike F. (2014), Data from: Different effects of paternal trans-generational immune priming on survival and immunity in step and genetic offspring, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.fs4hh

Abstract

Paternal trans-generational immune priming, whereby fathers provide immune protection to offspring, has been demonstrated in the red flour beetle Tribolium castaneum exposed to the insect pathogen Bacillus thuringiensis. It is currently unclear how such protection is transferred, as in contrast to mothers, fathers do not directly provide offspring with a large amount of substances. In addition to sperm, male flour beetles transfer seminal fluids in a spermatophore to females during copulation. Depending on whether paternal trans-generational immune priming is mediated by sperm or seminal fluids, it is expected to either affect only the genetic offspring of a male, or also their step offspring that are sired by another male. We therefore conducted a double-mating experiment and found that only the genetic offspring of an immune primed male show enhanced survival upon bacterial challenge, while phenoloxidase activity, an important insect immune trait, and the expression of the immune receptor PGRP were increased in all offspring. This indicates that information leading to enhanced survival upon pathogen exposure is transferred via sperm, and thus potentially constitutes an epigenetic effect, whereas substances transferred with the seminal fluid could have an additional influence on offspring immune traits and immunological alertness.

Usage Notes