Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Science

Insects Develop Pesticide Resistance Through Symbiosis With Gut Flora 144

Posted by samzenpus
from the with-a-little-help-from-my-little-friends dept.
First time accepted submitter blinkin247 writes "The indiscriminate spraying of pesticides has probably caused as many problems as it has solved, but here's one that was not expected: some bacteria have decided that insecticide is a very tasty meal. Unfortunately for us, one of the strains of bacteria that has evolved the ability to digest the toxin happens to be able to find a home in an insect's gut. When it does so, it provides the insect with resistance."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Insects Develop Pesticide Resistance Through Symbiosis With Gut Flora

Comments Filter:
  • Re:Curses! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by MichaelKristopeit498 (2549128) on Wednesday April 25, 2012 @08:28PM (#39801923)
    you're an idiot.

    any evolution could be dismissed as such a small modification caused by an external force.

  • by Taco Cowboy (5327) on Wednesday April 25, 2012 @08:48PM (#39802063) Journal

    The discovery that the bacteria inside insects' guts finds human-made (often very toxic) insecticide "tasty" can actually be a good news for all of us ---

    We can tap the ability of those bacteria to "digest" away many of the toxic waste produced by industries

  • Re:Curses! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by multicoregeneral (2618207) on Wednesday April 25, 2012 @08:50PM (#39802085) Homepage
    Yes. The creationists will have a hard time explaining this one. My guess is that they'll choose to ignore it, just like they do with all the other proofs of evolution in action. What I find interesting about all this is how quickly these bacteria actually evolve into totally new organisms. I mean, it makes sense with their short lives and fast reproductive cycles, but it's just amazing to watch.
  • by c0lo (1497653) on Wednesday April 25, 2012 @09:09PM (#39802213)

    The discovery that the bacteria inside insects' guts finds human-made (often very toxic) insecticide "tasty" can actually be a good news for all of us ---

    We can tap the ability of those bacteria to "digest" away many of the toxic waste produced by industries

    And allow the said industries to produce other flavors of toxic waste, only cheaper?
    Or would you like Monsanto to provide both the meal and the "enhanced digestion additive" for it?

  • Re:Curses! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by LordLucless (582312) on Wednesday April 25, 2012 @09:19PM (#39802267)

    My guess is they'll just say "meh", and shrug their shoulders.

    Most creationists don't have a problem with "evolution" as an adaptive mechanism, just the particular application of evolution that posits that trillions of iterations of evolution moved life from primordial sludge to sentient life.

    The idea that the species existed in a "perfect" unchanged state from the point of creation until the present time was rejected as religious dogma even before Darwin.

  • by Taco Cowboy (5327) on Wednesday April 25, 2012 @09:37PM (#39802355) Journal

    The discovery that the bacteria inside insects' guts finds human-made (often very toxic) insecticide "tasty" can actually be a good news for all of us ---

    We can tap the ability of those bacteria to "digest" away many of the toxic waste produced by industries

    And allow the said industries to produce other flavors of toxic waste, only cheaper?

    Whether you like it or not, the industrial complex has been producing, - and is producing - millions and millions of tons of toxic waste every single year. toxic wastes that are very difficult - and very un-economical to un-toxic-fy

    If there are bacteria which can "digest" those toxic waste and break-down the chemicals in such that the resultant by-products lose their toxicity - we should tap into the abilities of those bacteria to clean up the environment

    And your point being ... ?

  • Re:Curses! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by joocemann (1273720) on Wednesday April 25, 2012 @10:56PM (#39802771)

    The symbiotic organism evolved against the pressure, and since it is symbiotic with the insects, fitness is acquired. Classic darwin in the true complexity of life.

  • by joocemann (1273720) on Wednesday April 25, 2012 @11:02PM (#39802813)

    Smart people would make changes in farming and population control over the sae timeframe. Sadly, lots of ignorant people will die because they were born from ignorance and largely dont improve from the cycle.... and so 4+ BN will die, not that any sane human wouldnt be apalled by natures big push back.

    Oil resources finite? Check phosphorous peak estimates for a real scary reality check.

  • Re:Curses! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 25, 2012 @11:23PM (#39802923)

    That's not what the second law of thermodynamics means. That paper equivocates the meaning of order and disorder several times, dipping into the formal definitions to make the math work. Order and disorder are metaphors for thermodynamic entropy, but dS is not the change in chaos, it's the change in entropy. He defines order as the opposite of entropy, which is misleading to begin with and downright false when he starts using the word order to mean things other than the opposite of entropy (or X-entropy) in his paper.

    It doesn't make any sense to ask whether the increase in solar engery makes spaceships not extremely improbable. No matter what happened, it was extremely improbable because there's a huge timescale and the chances of everything happening the same way twice in a huge timescale are nil (if they did happen the same way twice, that would pretty much imply that there was little to no entropy from start to finish).

    He has this line:

    "If an increase in order is extremely improbable when a system is closed, it is still extremely improbable when the system is
    open, unless something is entering which makes it not extremely improbable."

    He's removed all precision from this. Undoing his re-definitions, this de-sugars to "if a decrease in entropy is a decrease in entropy when the system is closed, it is still a decrease in energy when the system is open, unless something is entering that has high entropy".

    As a counterexample: spaceships do happen. Unless you claim that God made cars, or something, it follows that this localized order did in fact come from an external source, for surely the spaceship did not assemble itself. And I guarantee that humans are inputting far, far, far, far less energy into their spaceship creations that the sun is inputting into the Earth. Life does happen. Following this rationale, unless you insist on a continually-active creator god which is continually inputting order to supplement the sun which is apparently insufficient, there's no way there can be population growth, since that's an "increase in order". Plants grow. They're creating "order" very specifically from the input of the sun.

    Not to mention he completely skips his proof that the "order" coming from the sun is strictly less than the "order" appearing on Earth.

    But aside from that. Genetic mutations plus natural selection = evolution. Or more precisely, inheritance with mutations, where the mutations are not always a net negative in every possible respect, plus some form of selection = evolution. Even if that did violate the second law you'd have to come up with a way to reconcile it, for it isn't enough to say "these things contradict", you have to figure out which is wrong and why, instead assuming thermodynamics always wins and that somehow like magic the other thing must be wrong even if you can't point out what's wrong about it (we know it doesn't actually win at the microscopic level, as indicated in that paper).

"Help Mr. Wizard!" -- Tennessee Tuxedo

Working...