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Insects as Model Systems for Animal Physiology

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image of Netherlands Journal of Zoology
For more content, see Archives Néerlandaises de Zoologie (Vol 1-17) and Animal Biology (Vol 53 and onwards).

Among the model systems used in physiological research in the Netherlands, insects appear to be suitable experimental animals, providing valuable information in fields like neurobiology, endocrinology, metabolic physiology, and ethology. For fundamental research, the relatively large accessibility and simplicity of insects is a clear advantage, while in the past many discoveries resulting from studies on insects appeared to be applicable also to mammalian systems including man. It may therefore be anticipated that insights derived from current fundamental physiological research on insect systems, in addition to their intrinsic relevance, will also contribute to an understanding of similar processes in more complex systems in higher animals. Furthermore, research on insect models has important applied aspects, since insights in the basis of insect behaviour and communication systems may provide new, ecologically sound possibilities for management of pest insects. It will be a challenge for the future to discover more and new ways to utilize insect systems for human benefit.

Affiliations: 1: (Department of Experimental Zoology, Biochemical Physiology Research Group, Utrecht University, 8 Padualaan, 3584 CH Utrecht, The Netherlands


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