Entomology 555 - Insect Physiology

Syllabus - Ent 555 - Insect Physiology


Russell Jurenka
434 Science II
Telephone - 294-1485
Email - rjurenka@iastate.edu
Lectures - MWF
Lab - Thr. - 3 hours


Performance of lecture and laboratory readings and exercises, 

      the purposes of which are to learn:

a.  the basic form and function of the insects;

b.  physiological role of the various systems in insect survival;

c.  the role of physiology in the basic behavior of insects.

At the end of this course you will have a better understanding of how insects live, grow and reproduce. Aspects of the various physiological systems will be covered to provide you with a basic understanding of insect growth and reproduction.


Suggested textbooks:

"The Insects Structure and Function - RF Chapman" 5th edition edited by Simpson & Douglas, 2012

“Physiological systems in Insects" by Marc Klowden. Academic Press, 3rd edition 2013

“Insect Physiology and Biochemistry” 3rd edition by James Nation 2015


Week 1 Introduction and historical perspective
  Morphology - Form and function. Start integument
  Integument - cuticle structure & formation
Week 2 Continue Integument
  Molting physiology
Week 3 Respiration - trachea, gas exchange
  Digestive Systems
Week 4 Digestion and regulation
  Food absorption and transport
  Digestion and Nutrition Ecology
Week 5 Fat body metabolism
  Excretory systems - hind gut, malpighian tubules
  Function of excretory systems
Week 6 Water balance
  Hemolymph physiology - composition, function
Week 7 Circulation & Thermoregulation
  Hemocytes, Immune response
  Energy metabolism - hemolymph transport
Week 8 Muscle physiology - esp. flight muscle
  Muscle energy
  Endocrine regulation of flight energy
Week 9 Neuroendocrine glands
  Hormones: structures and functions
  Signal transduction
Week 10 Endocrinology of molting and metamorphosis
  Endocrine regulation - other hormones
  Central nervous system - structure and function
Week 11 Nerve transmission
  Sensory physiology - vision
Week 12 Sensory physiology - mechanical
  Sensory physiology - chemical
  Semiochemicals - pheromones
Week 13 Reproductive systems - male
  Reproductive systems - female
Week 14 Endocrine regulation of reproduction
  Mating behavior and transfer of sperm; Parthenogenesis
Week 15 Embryology
  Diapause physiology
Week 16 Circadian Rhythms



Week 1 no lab
Week 2 dissection
Week 3 isolation of cuticular lipids; TLC, GC, GC-MS
Week 4 Spiracle control, Respiration
Week 5 Malpighian tubules and excretion
Week 6 no lab
Week 7 heart physiology
Week 8 Bacterial infection and Immune response, nodule formation
Week 9 signal transduction
Week 10 Neuroanatomy, cobalt backfilling
Week 11 neural immunocytochemistry
Week 12 neural immunocytochemistry (continued)
Week 13 house fly gustation
Week 14 Isolation of pheromone, GC, electroantennogram, wind tunnel
Week 15    female reproductive comparative Anatomy