Chemical Mimicry as an Integrating Mechanism: Cuticular Hydrocarbons of a Termitophile and Its Host

Science  24 Oct 1980:
Vol. 210, Issue 4468, pp. 431-433
DOI: 10.1126/science.210.4468.431


The staphylinid beetle Trichopsenius frosti Seevers has the same cuticular hydrocarbons as those of its host termite Reticulitermes flavipes (Kollar) and it biosynthesizes them. These cuticular hydrocarbons probably serve as the primary mechanism by which Trichopsenius frosti integrates itself into the termite colony.