Supersoldier Ants


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Sometimes I wonder how scientists get the funding that they do.  Okay, so they’re sitting at some kind of board meeting, and they’re pitching their research.  “We’re going to basically make superants.”  And someone is listening to them, stroking his/her chin, and slams down his/her hands and says, “BRILLIANT.  How much do you need?”  I am glad that people think this way, though, because the closer I can get to having half human/half ant bodyguards, the better.

The international team of scientists, led by Dr Ehab Abouheif of the Department of Biology at McGill University in Montreal, Canada, looked at the genomes of two ant species that produce supersoldiers. They identified the genetics behind the supersoldier caste and were able to activate the genes by treating ant larvae with methoprene, a growth hormone. As expected, the ant larvae became supersoldiers.

[Read more: Psyorg]





7 Responses to Supersoldier Ants

  1. So they put growth hormone on the ant larvae, and the ants got bigger. Sounds like grade school science fair level. How much did they get for that?

  2. The idea that scientists are working to make bugs BIGGER disturbs me greatly…. I think they have things a bit backwards…. They already adapt and survive better than us, lets not help them along! lol

  3. This is the most ignorant post GAS has posted in a while. Entomologists came across a species of ants that have never been seen with supersoldiers, however this small colony had them, astounded they took specimen back to the lab to do tests. These ants occur naturally in the wild in many other species, basically all the scientists did, was apply a similar hormone that the ants excrete naturally to larvae at a certain stage of their growth, and these specimen would grow into supersoldiers. It was research to prove that all of this one genus has traits from a common ancestor, its to prove the possibilities of evolution, and the effects of natural selection.

    You call yourselves "Geeks" yet you write your articles like idiots.