Comparison of static and dynamic assays when quantifying thermal plasticity of Drosophilids

Christian Winther Bak, Simon Bahrndorff, Natasja Krog Noer, Lisa Bjerregaard Jørgensen, Johannes Overgaard, Torsten Nygård Kristensen

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

Numerous assays are used to quantify thermal tolerance of arthropods including dynamic ramping and static knockdown assays. The dynamic assay measures a critical temperature while the animal is gradually heated, whereas the static assay measures the time to knockdown at a constant temperature. Previous studies indicate that heat tolerance measured by both assays can be reconciled using the time × temperature interaction from “thermal tolerance landscapes” (TTLs) in unhardened animals. To investigate if this relationship remains true within hardened animals, we use a static assay to assess the effect of heat hardening treatments on heat tolerance in 10 Drosophila species. Using this TTL approach and data from the static heat knockdown experiments, we model the expected change in dynamic heat knockdown temperature (CTmax: temperature at which flies enter coma) and compare these predictions to empirical measurements of CTmax . We find that heat tolerance and hardening capacity are highly species specific and that the two assays report similar and consistent responses to heat hardening. Tested assays are therefore likely to measure the same underlying physiological trait and provide directly comparable estimates of heat tolerance. Regardless of this compliance, we discuss why and when static or dynamic assays may be more appropriate to investigate ectotherm heat tolerance.

Original languageEnglish
Article number537
JournalInsects
Volume11
Issue number8
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
ISSN2075-4450
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Keywords

  • CTmax
  • Dynamic and static thermal assays
  • Hardening
  • Heat tolerance
  • Thermal tolerance landscapes

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