Letter | Published:

Retinene-1 in Insect Tissues

Naturevolume 192pages874875 (1961) | Download Citation



ATTEMPTS to detect vitamin A in insect tissues have been largely unsuccessful. One species of cockroach (Blatella germanica) has been raised for generations on a diet devoid of vitamin A and carotenoids1. As no vitamin A could be detected in oil extracted from these insects, it appeared that the vitamin played no part in their metabolic processes. Other workers2 similarly have reported their inability to detect vitamin A in Blattidae. Acetone extracts of the locusts Schistocerca gregaria and Locusta migratoria migratorioides gave negative tests for the vitamin3, while extracts of the heads of fruit-flies, grasshoppers, and dragonflies also have been reported to be lacking in vitamin A (ref. 4). No dietary requirement for vitamin A could be demonstrated for either Drosophila melanogaster5,6 or Anopheles labranchiae atroparvus7.

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  1. Department of Chemistry, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand



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