Encyclopedia of Parasitology

2016 Edition
| Editors: Heinz Mehlhorn

Insect Hormones: Used by Parasites to Steer Their Hosts

  • Heinz MehlhornEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-662-43978-4_4991

Primary hormones of insects are so-called juvenile hormones which are secreted by the corpora allata to maintain a larval stage, and ecdysone, which is excreted by the prothoracic glands or ring glands in  Diptera and initiates moulting after its conversion to 20-hydroxyecdysone. Since many parasite insects – especially several Diptera and Hymenoptera – live in their host’s hemolymph filling the body cavity, they exploit these hormones to their advantage. However, they are also able to excrete own hormones and in addition various other substances which steer the host’s development and behavior to their own support.

Further Reading

  1. Beckage NE (1985) Endocrine interactions between endoparasitic insects and their hosts. Ann Rev Entomol 30:371–413CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Lawrence P (1986) Host-parasite hormonal interactions: an overview. J Insect Physiol 32:295–298CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institut für Zoomorphologie, Zellbiologie und ParasitologieHeinrich-Heine-UniversitätDüsseldorfGermany