Silkworm Bombyx mori L.: Nature of Diapause Factor

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Science  19 Nov 1971:
Vol. 174, Issue 4011, pp. 835-838
DOI: 10.1126/science.174.4011.835


The diapause factor which is responsible for the induction of embryonic diapause in the silkworm (Bombyx mori L.) was isolated from the heads of female moths. It was extracted with 80 percent ethanol or 80 percent methanol and was heat-stable and not dialyzable. Since the active material was precipitated with ammonium sulfate and lost when incubated with proteolytic enzymes, it is highly probable that the diapause factor is a protein or a complex molecule containing peptide bonds. Molecular sieve techniques revealed two species of the diapause factor. The molecular weight of the smaller species lies between 5,000 and 10,000.