, Volume 39, Issue 4, pp 373-384

The labial gland in the termiteSchedorhinotermes lamanianus (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae): Morphology and function during communal food exploitation

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Summary

InSchedorhinotermes lamanianus, size and cellular differentiation of the labial gland exhibit a caste-specific polymorphism. The acini of workers are composed of three distinct types of secretory cells, one of which is absent in soldiers and alates. The labial gland of workers releases a chemical signal for intraspecific communication. During the communal exploitation of a food source, labial gland secretion makes workers aggregate at gnawing sites where this signal is deposited. A newly developed bioassay is demonstrated.