Theses and Dissertations - UTB/UTPA

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



First Advisor

Dr. Matthew Terry

Second Advisor

Dr. Kenneth R. Summy

Third Advisor

Dr. Jonathan Lieman


Embiidina, or "webspinners", is a small, sexually dimorphic, polyneopterous insect order and is the only order to spin silk throughout their life cycle. Unique morphological features and the phylogenetic position of Embiidina make it an attractive subject for study of the evolution and development of the insect body plan and the origin of novel morphological features. Oligotoma saundersii is easily cultured and a viable laboratory organism. It has a fairly standard short-germ embryogenesis process requiring 453 hours at 28°C with progressive development beginning in the anterior region. Preliminary work on targeted developmental genes has yielded small portions of seven genes. ARACED-PCR is a novel, efficient method to amplify larger pieces of target genes using degenerate primers. This research represents the first detailed investigation of Embiidina embryology and one of few among the polyneopterous insects; therefore, it represents an important addition to our understanding of the evolution and development of insects.


Copyright 2012 Omar Doria. All Rights Reserved.

Granting Institution

University of Texas-Pan American