Cockroaches Quiver With Sugar
As Science has published and echoed by the digital edition of Phys, sugar is not always sweet for German roach pests.
This new strain of German cockroach is glucose intolerant, making it avoid the traps with sugar and glucose poisons.
A study by entomologists at North Carolina State University shows the neural mechanism behind glucose aversion.
Sugar triggers bitter receptors on the taste buds of cockroach pests, causing these insects to avoid foods that cause this reaction, including poison. Since sugar is one of the ingredients in roach poison.
This aversion is genetically based and spreads to offspring, resulting in larger groups of roaches rejecting glucose and any poisons made from it.
In the study, the researchers conducted tests on the paired appendages of the mouth called para glosses.
The tests showed the unexpected electrophysiologist reactions of how glucose-stimulated neurons, confirming behavioral tests that showed that cockroaches quickly flee glucose when presented.
Cockroaches mock sweet and sugary traps
In the first part of the experiment, researchers offered hungry roaches a choice of two foods: peanut butter or glucose-rich jam.
«You could see how the mutant cockroaches taste the jam and jump backward, rejecting it»
In the second part of the experiment, the team discovered exactly why roaches repelled food.
Roaches were immobilized and used tiny electrodes to record the activity of taste receptors, cells that respond to taste, and “lodge” in the microscopic hairs of the insects’ mouthparts.
“The cell that responds to sweetness fires, but the bitter compound actually inhibits it, so the end result is that bitterness overrides sweetness.”
As we continue to throw insecticides at them, they will continue to develop new mechanisms to prevent them.