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Insect Molecular Biology

Sheng Yin Wang, Jennifer Hackney Price, Dayu Zhang
Hydrocarbons (HCs) deposited on the epicuticle of terrestrial insects are not only used to reduce water loss but are also used as chemical signals. The CYP4G gene is essential for HC biosynthesis in some insects. However, its function in Tenebrio molitor is unknown. Moreover, there is no report whether CYP4G of host can modulate the searching behaviors of its parasitoid. Here, we explore the function of the TmCYP4G122 and CYP4G123 genes in T. molitor. The TmCYP4G122 and CYP4G123 transcript could be detected in all developmental stages...
March 7, 2019: Insect Molecular Biology
Jingxiu Bi, Fan Feng, Jia Li, Jinjuan Mao, Mingxiao Ning, Xiaowen Song, Jia Xie, Jing Tang, Bin Li
C-type lectins are one of the pattern-recognition proteins involved in innate immunity in invertebrates. Although there are 16 C-type lectin genes that have been identified in the genome of Tribolium castaneum, their functions and mechanisms in innate immunity remain unknown. Here, we identified one C-type lectin ortholog, TcCTL6 (TC003708), by sequencing random clones from the cDNA library of the coleopteran beetle, T. castaneum. TcCTL6 contains a 654 bp open reading frame encoding a protein of 217 amino acids that includes a single carbohydrate-recognition domain (CRD)...
March 7, 2019: Insect Molecular Biology
Liron Bar, Henryk Czosnek, Iris Sobol, Murad Ghanim, Aliza Hariton Shalev
The whitefly Bemisia tabaci is a major pest to agriculture. Adults are is able to fly for long distances and to colonize staple crops, herbs and ornamentals, and to vector viruses belonging to several important taxonomic groups. During their early development, whiteflies mature from eggs through several nymphal stages (instars I to IV) until adults emerge from pupae. We aim at reducing whitefly populations by inhibiting the emergence of adults from nymphs. Here we targeted dystrophin, a conserved protein essential for the development of the muscle system in human, animals and insects...
March 5, 2019: Insect Molecular Biology
Qing-Yu Xu, Pan Deng, Ang Li, Qiong Zhang, Li-Li Mu, Kai-Yun Fu, Wen-Chao Guo, Guo-Qing Li
A heterodimer of ultraspiracle (USP) and ecdysone receptor (EcR) mediates 20-hydroxyecdysone (20E) signaling cascade to regulate insect molting and metamorphosis. However, at least two questions remain to be addressed in terms of the molecular importance of USP in insect species. Firstly, is USP involved in both regulation of ecdysteroidogenesis and mediation of 20E signaling in non-drosophilid insects, as that in Drosophila melanogaster? Secondly, does USP play any role in larval metamorphosis except as the partner of heterodimeric receptor to activate the downstream 20E signaling genes? In the present paper, we found that RNA interference (RNAi) of LdUSP in the final (fourth) instar larvae reduced the mRNA levels of four ecdysteroidogenesis genes (Ldspo, Ldphm, Lddib, Ldsad) and 20E titer, and repressed the expression of five 20E signal genes (EcRA, HR3, HR4, E74, and E75) in Leptinotarsa decemlineata...
March 5, 2019: Insect Molecular Biology
Minghui Jin, Chongyu Liao, Xingxian Fu, Robert Holdbrook, Kongming Wu, Yutao Xiao
Cotton plants produce gossypol as a major secondary metabolite to resist insect herbivores and pathogens. Helicoverpa armigera may employ multigene families of detoxification enzymes to deal with this metabolite. So far, the strength of the transcriptional response to gossypol detoxification in the cotton bollworms remains poorly understood. Here, we investigated the genomewide transcriptional changes that occur in cotton bollworm larvae after one generation feeding on various host plants (cotton, corn, soybean, and chili) or an artificial diet...
March 5, 2019: Insect Molecular Biology
Larissa P Bernardo, Daniela M Mombach, Elgion L S Loreto
A monophyletic group of Drosophila hAT transposable elements, referred to as Herves-like, was characterised and found to be present in 46% of 57 screened Drosophila species. A remarkable characteristic of these elements is the presence of a long array of minisatellite repeats (MnRs) in both subterminal extremities of the elements. The copy number of these minisatellites was highly variable between and within populations. Twenty-three strains of D. willistoni, covering its geographic distribution, were screened for polymorphism in the copy number of 5' MnRs, showing a variation from 7 to 20 repeat copies...
February 22, 2019: Insect Molecular Biology
Yi-Han Lou, Jia-Bao Lu, Dan-Ting Li, Yu-Xuan Ye, Xu-Mei Luo, Chuan-Xi Zhang
The brown planthopper (BPH), Nilaparvata lugens, is a major threat to rice production. The eggshell plays an important role in insect reproduction. The constituents and formation process of BPH eggshells remains largely unknown. Here we report a novel eggshell associated protein, NlChP38, containing an amelogenin domain, is essential for normal ovulation in the brown planthopper. NlChP38 is specifically expressed in the follicular cells from egg chambers at both RNA and protein levels. RNA interference (RNAi) of NlChP38 resulted in oocytes with loose and thin eggshell structure and caused ovulation difficulties...
February 16, 2019: Insect Molecular Biology
Karla Saavedra-Rodriguez, Corey L Campbell, Audrey Lenhart, Patricia Penilla, Saul Lozano-Fuentes, William C Black
Aedes aegypti is the major vector of a number of arboviruses that cause disease in humans. Without vaccines or pharmaceuticals, pyrethroid insecticides remain the major tool for public health protection. Pyrethroid resistance is now widespread. Replacement substitutions in the voltage-gated sodium channel (vgsc) that reduce the stability of pyrethroid binding account for most of the resistance but metabolic mechanisms also inactivate pyrethroids. High-throughput sequencing and the Ae. aegypti L5 annotated physical map has allowed interrogation of the exome for genes and single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) associated with pyrethroid resistance...
February 13, 2019: Insect Molecular Biology
Mohamed A A Omar, Yan Ao, Meizhen Li, Kang He, Le Xu, Haojie Tong, Jiang Mingxing, Fei Li
The cotton mealybug Phenacoccus solenopsis Tinsley (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae) is a polyphagous insect that attacks tens of plant and causes substantial economic loss. Insect chitinases are required to remove the old cuticle to allow for continued growth and development. Though insect chitinases have been well-studied in tens of insects, their functions in mealybug are still not addressed. Here, we sequenced the transcriptomes of adult males and females, from which eight chitinase genes were identified. We then used the method of rapid amplification of cDNA ends to amplify their full-length...
February 9, 2019: Insect Molecular Biology
Takao K Suzuki, Shigeyuki Koshikawa, Isao Kobayashi, Keiro Uchino, Hideki Sezutsu
Color patterns in butterflies and moths are crucial traits for adaptation. Previous investigations have highlighted genes responsible for pigmentation (i.e., yellow and ebony). However, the mechanisms by which these genes are regulated in lepidopteran insects remains poorly understood. To elucidate this, molecular studies involving dipterans have largely analyzed the cis-regulatory regions of pigmentation genes and have revealed cis-regulatory modularity. Here, we used well-developed transgenic techniques in Bombyx mori and demonstrated that cis-regulatory modularity controls tissue-specific expression of the yellow gene...
February 9, 2019: Insect Molecular Biology
Xiao-San Zhou, Chen Chen, Tao-Hong Li, Jia-Jie Tang, Bao-Jian Zhu, Guo-Qing Wei, Cen Qian, Chao-Liang Liu, Lei Wang
The QM gene that encodes for the ribosomal protein L10 was firstly identified from human tumor cells as a tumor suppressor. In this study, a QM gene was identified in silkworm Bombyx mori (BmQM) and its immunomodulatory function was explored. BmQM mRNA and protein were highly expressed in the silk gland and fat body, and expressed in all stages of silkworm growth. After challenged with four different microorganisms, the expression levels of BmQM mRNA in fat body or hemocytes were significantly upregulated compared with the control...
February 8, 2019: Insect Molecular Biology
Xiaoming Zhao, Zhongyu Qin, Jing Zhang, Yang Yang, Pan Jia, Qing Yang, Enbo Ma, Jianzhen Zhang
The nuclear receptor-mediated 20-hydroxyecdysone (20E) signaling pathway plays crucial roles in insects by initiating and regulating molting and metamorphosis. In the present study, we identified and characterized a cDNA encoding a putative nuclear receptor protein (LmHR39) based on Locusta migratoria transcriptomics data. Reverse-transcription quantitative PCR (RT-qPCR) revealed that LmHR39 shows low-level expression in the early days of fifth instar nymphs, and peak expression occurs on day 5, which is followed by a decrease before ecdysis...
February 5, 2019: Insect Molecular Biology
Lin Qiu, Yajie Sun, Zhaobao Jiang, Pan Yang, Hui Liu, Hao Zhou, Xiaoping Wang, Wei Zhang, Yongjun Lin, Weihua Ma
Insecticidal crystal (Cry) proteins produced by the bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) are toxic to a diverse range of insects. Transgenic rice expressing Cry1A, Cry2A and Cry1C toxins have been developed that are lethal to Chilo suppressalis, a devastating insect pest of rice in China. Identifying the mechanisms underlying the interactions of Cry toxins with susceptibility hosts will improve both our understanding of Cry protein toxicology and long-term efficacy of Bt crops. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that V-ATPase subunit A contributes to the action of Cry1Ab/1Ac, Cry2Aa and Cry1Ca toxins in C...
February 5, 2019: Insect Molecular Biology
Yating Liu, Wen Xie, Litao Guo, Xin Yang, Jinjian Yang, Shaoli Wang, Qingjun Wu, Xuguo Zhou, Youjun Zhang
Sex determination genes are important regulators of reproduction as well as of the development of both behavioural and morphological sex characteristics. The sweetpotato whitefly, Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius) (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae), is an emerging insect pest worldwide. The recent release of the genome sequence of the highly invasive B. tabaci Q/MED allows us to investigate the mechanisms and genes involved in sex determination. The combined genome- and transcriptome-wide analyses identified 26 genes putatively associated with sex determination in B...
February 4, 2019: Insect Molecular Biology
Feifei Zou, Qin Guo, Bo Shen, Changliang Zhu
The emergence and rapid spread of insecticide resistance in several mosquito species has become a significant obstacle in management of mosquito-borne diseases, including deltamethrin resistance in Culex pipiens pallens. Previous study identified a major deltamethrin resistance QTL (DR-6) which alone explained 62% of the genetic variance. In this study, the marker L4B1.102 and L4B1.175 associated with the DR-6 were characterized. We searched for potential candidate genes in the flank region of two markers in the genome sequence, and showed that a cluster of CYP6 cytochrome P450 genes (CYP6BB4, CYP6BB3, CYP6CC2, CYP6P14, CYP6BZ2, CYP6AA9, CYP6AA8, CYP6AA7) was in the vicinity of DR-6...
February 4, 2019: Insect Molecular Biology
Sofía Romero, Alexandra Nastasa, Abigail Chapman, Waldan K Kwong, Leonard J Foster
Gut microbiota research is an emerging field that improves our understanding of the ecological and functional dynamics of gut environments. The honey bee gut microbiota is a highly rewarding community to study, as honey bees are critical pollinators of many crops for human consumption and produce valuable commodities such as honey and wax. Most significantly, unique characteristics of the Apis mellifera gut habitat make it a valuable model system. This review discusses methods and pipelines used in the study of the gut microbiota of A...
January 16, 2019: Insect Molecular Biology
Ellen O Martinson, Aisha L Siebert, Mengni He, Yogeshwar D Kelkar, Luticha A Doucette, John H Werren
Venom of the parasitoid wasp Nasonia vitripennis changes the metabolism and gene expression in its fly host Sarcophaga bullata to induce developmental arrest, suppression of the immune response, and various other venom effects. Yet, the venom of ectoparasitoid wasps has not been fully characterized. A major component of N. vitripennis venom is an uncharacterized, high-expressing protein referred to as Venom Y. Here we describe the evolutionary history and possible functions of this venom protein. We found that Venom Y is a relatively young gene that has duplicated to form two distinct paralog groups...
January 12, 2019: Insect Molecular Biology
Qing-Yu Xu, Qing-Wei Meng, Pan Deng, Kai-Yun Fu, Wen-Chao Guo, Guo-Qing Li
Broad-Complex (BrC) is a down-stream target of both 20-hydroxyecdysone and juvenile hormone signaling. BrC regulates morphogenetic changes between nymphal instars in hemimetabolans, whereas it controls pupal commitment, pupal morphogenesis and inhibits adult differentiation in holometabolans. Among five BrC cDNAs (Z1-Z4, and Z6) identified in the Colorado potato beetle, we found in the present paper that Z1, Z2 and Z6 were mainly expressed at the last (fourth) instar and prepupal stages, whereas the levels of Z3 and Z4 increased during the penultimate (3rd) instar stage, peaked at the last instar larval phase, and gradually decreased at the prepupal and pupal periods...
January 10, 2019: Insect Molecular Biology
Ting-Ting Chen, Li-Rong Tan, Nan Hu, Zhan-Qi Dong, Zhi-Gang Hu, Qi Qin, Jiang-Qiong Long, Peng Chen, An-Ying Xu, Min-Hui Pan, Cheng Lu
Bombyx mori nucleopolyhedrovirus (BmNPV) is one of the primary pathogens that causes severe economic losses to sericulture. Comparative transcriptomics analysis has been widely applied to explore the antiviral mechanism in resistant strains. Here, to identify genes involved in BmNPV infection, we identified differentially expressed genes (DEGs) and performed weighted gene co-expression network analysis (WGCNA) between two Bombyx mori strains: strain 871 (susceptible to BmNPV infection) and the near-isogenic strain 871C (resistant to BmNPV)...
January 10, 2019: Insect Molecular Biology
Erinn P Fagan-Jeffries, Steven J B Cooper, Tessa M Bradford, Andrew D Austin
A recent DNA barcoding study of Australian microgastrines (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) sought to use next generation sequencing of the cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1 (COI) barcoding gene region, the wingless (WG) gene and the internal transcribed spacer 2 (ITS2) to delimit molecular species in a highly diverse group of parasitic wasps. Large intragenomic distances between ITS2 variants, often larger than the average interspecific variation, caused difficulties in using ITS2 for species delimitation in both threshold and tree-based approaches, and the gene was not included in the reported results of the previous DNA barcoding study...
January 10, 2019: Insect Molecular Biology
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