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ARS Home » Midwest Area » Columbia, Missouri » Biological Control of Insects Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #342852

Title: Prostaglandin signaling in insects: Ecology, physiology, biochemistry, molecular biology

item LEI, ZHANG - Chinese Academy Of Agricultural Sciences
item Ringbauer, Joseph - Joe
item Goodman, Cynthia
item Reall, Tamra
item YAOFA, LI - Hebei Academy Of Agriculture & Forestry
item XING-FU, JIANG - Chinese Academy Of Agricultural Sciences
item Stanley, David

Submitted to: Archives of Insect Biochemistry and Physiology
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/19/2018
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: N/A

Interpretive Summary: Chemical insecticides are effective pest insect management tools, however, negative effects, including environmental contamination and insect resistance to the insecticides attend use of these products. These negative effects drive research into alternative insect management technologies such as biological control based on deploying parasites and predators that consume pest insect species. More recently, novel pest control technologies are based on identification of key genes that can be targeted for disruption by gene-silencing technologies. Such pest control strategies raises important safety issues because some genes can move between species via several mechanisms. Here, we contribute more understanding of gene movements by reporting on a new family of genetic elements. This new information will be used by scientists working around the world develop effective and safe genetically-based insect pest control technologies.

Technical Abstract: Prostaglandins (PGs) are oxygenated derivatives of three C20 polyunsaturated fatty acids. Here, I assemble the many known PG actions into a simple, structured view that PG signaling underlies most of the biological processes in the largest group of animals - insects. These compounds are present in some of the earliest animal species, some dating to the Vendian period (650 – 543 x 106 years ago). With such early beginnings, it comes as no surprise to see they operate as biochemical signals in virtually all animals, including insects. The surprise lies in the intense biological significance of these molecules. In insects, PGs mediate primary urine formation in Malpighian tubules and renal resorption in hindguts. They drive follicle development and coordinate expression of genes encoding eggshell proteins. They also release egg-laying behavior in some species. Certain PGs down-regulate mammalian inflammatory responses and some hematophagous insect species inject these down-regulating PGs into their mammalian hosts to facilitate blood-feeding, an example of PG significance at the ecological level. Another example of PGs operating at the ecological level is connected to the many PG actions in insect immunity. PGs mediate several immune functions, including phagocytosis and secondary killing of bacterial cells, nodulation reactions to bacterial and viral infections, hemocyte migration toward wound and infection sites, hemocyte spreading on surfaces, and mediating the influences of insect cytokines and other biochemical signals. Some bacteria and parasites suppress insect host immunity by targeting specific enzymes necessary to synthesize PGs that signal and coordinate immune functions. At the cellular level, PGs influence expression of genes and proteins, and they modify protein function by influencing phosphorylation of specific proteins. Additional PG actions await discovery.