Submitted to: Journal of Invertebrate Pathology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/6/2009
Publication Date: 5/13/2009
Citation: Shelby, K., Popham, H.J. 2009. Analysis of ESTs Generated from Immune-Stimulated Hemocytes of Larval Heliothis virescens. Journal of Invertebrate Pathology. 101:86-95.
Interpretive Summary: Budworm larvae are caterpillars that cause heavy economic loss to many agricultural commodities in North America. They are closely related to the Old World bollworm that is an economic pest worldwide. We have made a library of over 5,000 DNA sequences from this pest moth’s genome that encodes over 1600 different genes. This is the first library of sequences of this moth and will be used worldwide by researchers. We will use the information to study proteins that influence the immune system of the budworm which will lead us to what control measures work best and which measures the insect will adapt to in a short time.
Technical Abstract: Heliothis virescens immunome components responding to baculoviral and bacterial infection were identified from expressed sequence tags (ESTs) generated from an immune-stimulated larval hemocyte cDNA library. A total of 5548 ESTs were generated comprising 448 contigs and 1114 singletons, totaling 1606 putative transcripts 1101 of which had BLAST scores, including many known orthologs from other insect species. Orthologs of known or putative immune function were identified among them melanization pathway components, proteases, antibacterial proteins, lectins, bacteria-binding proteins, ferritins, scavenger receptors, cell surface receptors, signaling pathway components, and stress response enzymes. Additionally, many enzymes of central metabolism, cytoskeletal, mitochondrial, and ribosomal components, as well as transcriptional and translational regulators were identified. These transcripts are the first large scale report of the H. virescens immunome responding to entomopathogens, and represent a first step to a more complete transcriptome for this pest moth.