Encyclopedia of Entomology

2008 Edition
| Editors: John L. Capinera

Midgut and Insect Pathogens

  • Ping Wang
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4020-6359-6_4616

The alimentary canal in insects is the primary location interfacing with their host organisms and other biotic and abiotic factors from the environment. The insect alimentary canal can be divided into three distinct regions, the foregut, midgut and hindgut, based on their embryonic origins, structure and physiological functions. The foregut and hindgut are derived from embryonic ectoderm and are covered by cuticle. The midgut is derived from embryonic mesoderm and does not have the protective cuticle covering. The midgut is the region of the alimentary canal that actively interacts with the gut content from the environment and performs the primary functions of food digestion and subsequent nutrient uptake. In direct contact with the gut contents without protection by cuticle covering, the midgut constantly faces physical, chemical and biological challenges from the environment. It is a primary target and portal of entry for various pathogenic organisms.

Bacterial pathogens primarily...

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.


  1. Lehane MJ, Billingsley PF (1996) Biology of the insect midgut. Chapman and Hall, New York, NY, 486 ppGoogle Scholar
  2. Tanada Y, Kaya H (1993) Insect pathology. Academic Press, San Diego, CA, 666 ppGoogle Scholar
  3. Wang P, Granados RR (2001) Molecular structure of the peritrophic membrane (PM): identification of potential PM target sites for insect control. Arch Insect Biochem Physiol 47:110–118PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ping Wang
    • 1
  1. 1.Cornell UniversityGenevaUSA