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International Journal of Ecology
Volume 2014, Article ID 835636, 6 pages
Review Article

Ecological Importance of Insects in Selenium Biogenic Cycling

1Agrochemical Research Center, All-Russian Scientific Research Institute of Vegetable Breeding and Seeds Production, Russian Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Moscow 143080, Russia
2Department of Natural Sciences and Geography, Pridnestrovian State University, 3300 Tiraspol, Moldova

Received 23 July 2013; Accepted 30 December 2013; Published 6 February 2014

Academic Editor: Jean-Guy Godin

Copyright © 2014 Nadezhda Golubkina et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Selenium is an essential trace element for animal and human beings. Despite the importance of insects in most ecosystems and their significant contribution to the biological cycling of trace elements due to high abundance, population productivity, and diverse ecosystem functions, surprisingly little information is available on selenium bioaccumulation by these arthropods. This review considers selenium essentiality and toxicity to insects as well as insects’ contribution to selenium trophic transfer through the food chains. Data on Se accumulation by insects of the Dniester River Valley with no anthropogenic Se loading reveal typically low Se content in necrophagous insects compared to predators and herbivores and seasonal variations in Se accumulation.