BITING AND STINGING PESTS: ECOLOGY AND BIOLOGICALLY-BASED CONTROL
Location: Biological Control of Pests Research Unit
Title: Transcription profiling of guanine nucleotide binding proteins during developmental regulation, and pesticide response in Solenopsis invicta (Hymenoptera: Formicidae)
Submitted to: Journal of Insect Physiology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: August 12, 2012
Publication Date: September 12, 2012
Citation: Zhao, L., Chen, J., Jones, W.A. 2012. Transcription profiling of guanine nucleotide binding proteins during developmental regulation, and pesticide response in Solenopsis invicta (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Journal of Insect Physiology. 4: 1-9.
Interpretive Summary: The red imported fire ant is one of over 280 species in the widespread genus. Although it is native to South America, it has become a pest in the southern United States, Australia, Taiwan, Philippines, and the southern Chinese provinces. The red imported fire ants are more aggressive than most native ant species, and have a strong, painful, and persistent irritating sting. In addition, their mound-building activity can damage plant roots, lead to loss of crops, and interfere with mechanical cultivation. In order to develop new strategy for control of the red imported fire ant, we cloned and analyzed guanine nucleotide binding proteins from the red imported fire ant. We examined the RNA expression in each developmental stage of the ant, and also examined the gene expression in response to heat shock, ultraviolet, and boric acid treatment in red imported fire ant workers.
Guanine nucleotide binding proteins (GNBP or G-protein) are glycoproteins anchored on the cytoplasmic cell membrane, and are mediators for many cellular processes. Complete cDNA of guanine nucleotide-binding protein gene ß-subunit (SiGNBP) was cloned and sequenced from S. invicta workers. To detect whether SiGNBP of the red imported fire ant is developmentally regulated, expression levels of SiGNBP gene in different developmental stages of S. invicta were examined using quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qPCR). SiGNBP was expressed in each developmental stage, especially highly expressed in the late larval and early pupal stages, as well as in the dealate females (queens) ~10 days post nuptial flight. qPCR also showed that mRNA transcription levels of SiGNBP were regulated during the time course study in response to heat shock, ultraviolet, and boric acid treatment in S. invicta workers. These results suggest that the SiGNBP gene may play an important role in the development of S. invicta and the differential expression of SiGNBP has a potential to be used as a biomarker for environmental and chemical stress and target of new insecticides in fire ants control.