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10 April 2014 11:44 am ,
Vol. 344 ,
The Pyrenean ibex, an impressive mountain goat that lived in the central Pyrenees in Spain, went extinct in 2000. But a...
Tight budgets are forcing NASA to consider turning off one or more planetary science projects that have completed their...
Ebola is not a stranger to West Africa—an outbreak in the 1990s killed chimpanzees and sickened one researcher. But the...
In an as-yet-unpublished report, an international panel of geoscientists has concluded that a pair of deadly...
Tropical disease experts tried and failed before to eradicate yaws, a rare disfiguring disease of poor countries. Now,...
Since 2002, researchers have reported that agricultural communities in the hot and humid Pacific Coast of Central...
Balkan endemic kidney disease surfaced in the 1950s and for decades defied attempts to finger the cause. It occurred...
- 10 April 2014 11:44 am , Vol. 344 , #6180
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Chronicler of a Bug's Life
16 April 1999 7:00 pm
is the birthday of Sir Vincent Wigglesworth, an English entomologist born in 1899 who elucidated the physiology of insect metamorphosis. Wigglesworth discovered a number of important insect hormones, including a crucial growth hormone made in the brain and a hormone that prevents juvenile insects from developing adult characteristics until they reach the right larval stage.
Wigglesworth learned how to manipulate levels of several hormones to radically alter the development of his insect subjects. Based on this work he formulated a coherent theory of insect metamorphosis, maintaining that hormones selectively activate particular genetic components, which in turn shape the insect's morphology and development. His 1934 textbook, Insect Physiology, is considered by many to be the foundation for this field.
Wigglesworth was knighted in 1964. He died in 1994.
[Source: Britannica Online]