Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
  • This chapter is unavailable for purchase
  • Print publication year: 2012
  • Online publication date: December 2012

5 - Circulatory system, blood and the immune system

from Part I - The head, ingestion, utilization and distribution of food

Summary

Introduction

The cells of all animals, including insects, are bathed in an extracellular fluid (ECF); and most cells of the animal exchange solutes with the ECF, not the external environment. In most animals, including insects, solute exchange between cells and ECF is facilitated by the bulk flow of ECF, powered by one-to-many pumps (including hearts). The physiological system mediating bulk flow is known as the circulatory system, the topic of this chapter. Most insects have one major pump, the dorsal vessel, and multiple accessory pumps, with the circulating portion of the ECF known as the blood or hemolymph. The insect circulatory system is open, meaning that the hemolymph flows freely around insect organs, in contrast to the closed circulatory system of vertebrates in which blood is retained within vessels. The structural organization of the insect circulatory system and the determinants of blood flow are described in Sections 5.1 and 5.2, respectively, and the composition of hemolymph is considered in Section 5.3.

Hemolymph has four key functions. It is the vehicle for transport of hormones and nutrients between tissues, and a site for storage of some nutrients and water; these two functions are considered in Section 5.3. It is also a crucially important component of the insect immune system. The humoral (non-cellular) immune function is addressed in Section 5.3 and the cellular function in Section 5.4. Other insect organs also contribute to insect immunity, notably the gut (Chapter 3), fat body (Chapter 6) and Malpighian tubules (Chapter 18).

Recommended reading
Eleftherianos, I.Revenis, C. 2011 Role and importance of phenoloxidase in insect hemostasisJournal of Innate Immunity 3 28
Glenn, J. D.King, J. G.Hillyer, J. F. 2010 Structural mechanics of the mosquito heart and its function in bidirectional hemolymph transportJournal of Experimental Biology 213 541
Krzemien, J.Crozatier, M.Vincent, A. 2010 Ontogeny of the larval hematopoietic organ, hemocyte homeostasis and the dedicated cellular immune response to parasitismInternational Journal of Developmental Biology 54 1117
Lemaitre, B.Hoffmann, J. 2007 The host defense of Annual Review of Immunology 25 697
Pass, G. 2000 Accessory pulsatile organs: evolutionary innovations in insectsAnnual Review of Entomology 45 495
Strand, M. R. 2008 The insect cellular immune responseInsect Science 15 1
References in figure captions
Clare, S.Tauber, O. E. 1942 Circulation of haemolymph in the wings of the cockroach L: III. Circulation in the articular membrane, the pteralia, and wing folds as directive and speed controlling mechanisms in wing circulationIowa State College Journal of Science 16 349
Gilbert, L. I. 1967 Lipid metabolism and function in insectsAdvances in Insect Physiology 4 70
Kaufman, W. R.Davey, K. G. 1971 The pulsatile organ in the tibia of Canadian Entomologist 103 487
Krenn, H. W.Pass, G. 1993 Winghearts in MecopteraInternational Journal of Insect Morphology and Embriology 22 63
Lee, R. M. 1961 The variation of blood volume with age in the desert locust ( Forsk.)Journal of Insect Physiology 6 36
Masera, E. 1933 Il ritmo del vaso pulsante nel Rivista di Biologia 15 225
Mills, R. R.Whitehead, D. L. 1970 Hormonal control of tanning in the American cockroach: changes in blood cell permeability during ecdysisJournal of Insect Physiology 16 331
Monpeyssin, M.Beaulaton, J. 1978 Hemocytopoiesis in the oak silkworm and some other Lepidoptera: I. Ultrastructural study of normal processesJournal of Ultrastructure Research 64 35
Nelson, C. M.Ihle, K. E.Fondrk, M. K.PageJr., R. E.Amdam, G. V. 2007 The gene has multiple coordinating effects on social organizationPLoS Biology 5 e62
Nicolson, S. W. 1980 Water balance and osmoregulation in , a tenebrionid beetle from the Namib DesertJournal of Insect Physiology 26 315
Pass, G. 1985 Gross and fine structure of the antennal circulatory organ in cockroaches (Blattodea, Insecta)Journal of Morphology 185 255
Ratcliffe, N. A.Gagen, S. J. 1977 Studies on the cellular reactions of insects: an ultrastructural analysis of nodule formation in Tissue & Cell 9 73
Richards, A. G. 1963 The ventral diaphragm of insectsJournal of Morphology 113 17
Roussel, J.-P. 1972 Rythme et régulation du coeur chez LAcrida 1 17
Shapiro, J. P.Law, J. H.Wells, M. A. 1988 Lipid transport in insectsAnnual Review of Entomology 33 297
Strand, M. R. 2008 The insect cellular immune responseInsect Science 15 1
Sutcliffe, D. W. 1963 The chemical composition of haemolymph in insects and some other arthropods, in relation to their phylogenyComparative Biochemistry and Physiology 9 121
Tublitz, N. J.Truman, J. W. 1985 Insect cardioactive peptides II: neurohormonal control of heart activity by two cardioacceleratory peptides in the tobacco hawkmoth, Journal of Experimental Biology 114 381
Wasserthal, L. T. 1980 Oscillating haemolymph “circulation” in the butterfly, L. revealed by contact thermography and photocell measurementsJournal of Comparative Physiology B 139 145
Whedon, A. D. 1938 The aortic diverticula of the OdonataJournal of Morphology 63 229
Wigglesworth, V. B. 1972 The Principles of Insect PhysiologyLondonChapman & Hall