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How have insects come to feed on wood?

🎉 More Exciting News! Our paper "Chewing through challenges: Exploring the evolutionary pathways to wood-feeding in insects" has been published in BioEssays!

Our article illuminates the complex evolutionary journey insects have undertaken to adapt to wood-feeding, a diet that poses significant nutritional challenges. Led by Cristian Beza, with invaluable insights and contributions from a dedicated team including Brian Wiegmann, Jessica Ware, Matt Petersen, Nicole Gunter, Marissa Cole, Melbert Schwarz, Matt Bertone, and Daniel Young, this paper dives into the evolutionary mechanisms that allowed certain insect lineages to successfully develop saproxylophagy.

Special thanks to our former postdoc, Cristian, for spearheading this effort, and to our former grad students, Melbert and Marissa, for adding new, exciting microbiome data from wood-feeding beetles Micromalthus debilis and limoniid Epiphragma solatrix that were previously unexplored.

The full citation for the paper is as follows:

Beza-Beza, C. F., Wiegmann, B. M., Ware, J. A., Petersen, M., Gunter, N., Cole, M. E., Schwarz, M., Bertone, M. A., Young, D., & Mikaelyan, A. (2024). Chewing through challenges: Exploring the evolutionary pathways to wood-feeding in insects. BioEssays, e2300241.

If you're interested in termites, cockroaches, beetles, or flies that feed on dead wood, you can access the full article at:

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