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Free Content Rapid Cold-Hardening in Zaprionus Vittiger (Coquillett) (Diptera: Drosophilidae)

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Low temperature injury can be significantly reduced by pre-treatment at sub-lethal low temperatures of only a few hours - a phenomenon termed 'rapid cold-hardening' (RCH). However, most studies to date have focused extensively on only a few key insect taxa, e.g. Drosophila melanogaster within the Drosophilidae family. Further studies on other closely-related species are required to better understand evolutionary and ecological variation in the magnitude of the RCH response in terrestrial arthropods. Here, we investigated RCH in a previously unstudied fruit fly, Zaprionus vittiger, following a range of high and low pretreatment temperatures. There was a significant improvement in Z. vittiger survival of lethal temperatures (2 h at -3°C) following a 2 h pretreatment at 4, 7 and 10°C as well as 30°C for 2 h. Maximum survival (60-70%) during RCH was achieved following hardening at 7°C and 10°C but is lower than some Drosophila species under similar treatment conditions. Therefore, since RCH was detected in a confamilial species, we propose that RCH might be a widely conserved response to temperature variation in the family Drosophilidae, although some variation in the magnitude of the response can be detected.

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Keywords: COLD TOLERANCE; PHENOTYPIC PLASTICITY; RAPID COLD-HARDENING; THERMAL HISTORY

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 November 2010

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  • CryoLetters is a bimonthly international journal for low temperature sciences, including cryobiology, cryopreservation or vitrification of cells and tissues, chemical and physical aspects of freezing and drying, and studies involving ecology of cold environments, and cold adaptation

    The journal publishes original research reports, authoritative reviews, technical developments and commissioned book reviews of studies of the effects produced by low temperatures on a wide variety of scientific and technical processes, or those involving low temperature techniques in the investigation of physical, chemical, biological and ecological problems.

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