Apr 21, 2020

Characterization of essential eggshell proteins from Aedes aegypti mosquitoes

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
C. J. SimingtonJun Isoe


Up to 40% of the world population now live in areas where dengue mosquito vectors coexist with humans. Aedes aegypti are vectors for zoonotic diseases that affect hundreds of millions of individuals per year globally. We recently identified the eggshell organizing factor 1 (EOF1) protein using systematic RNA interference (RNAi) screening of mosquito lineage-specific genes. It was shown that eggs deposited by RNAi-EOF1 A. aegypti and A. albopictus mosquitoes were non-melanized, fragile, and contained nonviable embryos. Motivated by this discovery, we performed RNAi screening of eggshell proteins to determine putative downstream target proteins of intracellular EOF1. We identified several eggshell proteins as essential for eggshell formation in A. aegypti and characterized their phenotypes in detail by molecular and biochemical approaches. We found that Nasrat, Closca, and Polehole structural proteins, together with the Nudel serine protease, are indispensable for eggshell melanization and egg viability. While all four proteins are predominantly expressed in ovaries of adult females, Nudel mRNA expression is highly upregulated in response to blood feeding. Furthermore, we identified four secreted eggshell enzymes as important fac...Continue Reading

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