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FEBS Lett. 2006 May 15;580(11):2667-70. Epub 2006 Apr 21.

Differential expression of HR38 in the mushroom bodies of the honeybee brain depends on the caste and division of labor.

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  • 1Department of Biological Sciences, Graduate School of Science, The University of Tokyo, Tokyo 113-0033, Japan.


We used a cDNA microarray to identify genes expressed in a caste (worker)- and division of labor (nurse bees or foragers)-dependent manner in the honeybee brain. Among the identified genes, one encoded a putative orphan receptor (HR38) homologue that mediates ecdysteroid-signaling. Real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction indicated that expression of this gene is higher in forager brains, as compared to nurse bees and queens. In the forager brain, expression was concentrated in a subset of the mushroom body neurons, suggesting that ecdysteroid-signaling in the mushroom bodies might be involved in the division of labor of the workers.

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