Skip to main content
ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Maricopa, Arizona » U.S. Arid Land Agricultural Research Center » Pest Management and Biocontrol Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #392045

Research Project: Sustainable Pest Management for Arid-Land Agroecosystems

Location: Pest Management and Biocontrol Research

Title: Functional role of AsAP in the reproduction of Adelphocoris suturalis (Hemiptera: Miridae)

item QIN, SHIDONG - Huazhong Agricultural University
item ZHU, BANGQIN - Huazhong Agricultural University
item HUANG, XINGXING - Huazhong Agricultural University
item Hull, Joe
item CHEN, LIZHEN - Huazhong Agricultural University
item LUO, JING - Hubei University

Submitted to: Insects
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/19/2022
Publication Date: 8/22/2022
Citation: Qin, S., Zhu, B., Huang, X., Hull, J.J., Chen, L., Luo, J. 2022. Functional role of AsAP in the reproduction of Adelphocoris suturalis (Hemiptera: Miridae) . Insects. 13(8). Article 755.

Interpretive Summary: The high capacity of insects to generate immense numbers of progeny is one of the contributing factors to pest outbreaks. Consequently, targeted disruption of the underlying reproductive processes has been proposed as a way of potentially repressing troublesome pest populations. For many insect species, a number of enzymes have been identified that play key roles in egg development. Their function in plant bug reproduction, however, remain to be determined. Using Adelphocoris suturalis, a pest of cotton and other crops, as a model for studying egg development in plant bug facilitated identification of one such enzyme, an asparatic protease. The enzyme is highly expressed in female reproductive tissue and is important for egg maturation as targeted disruption of the enzyme negatively impacted the lifetime capacity of females to generate viable offspring. The importance of the aspartic protease gene in plant bug reproductive development suggests that strategies specifically targeting the gene may be useful for repressing future plant bug populations.

Technical Abstract: Adelphocoris suturalis Jakovlev (Hemiptera: Miridae) is an omnivorous agricultural pest that has severe economic impacts on a diverse range of agricultural crops. Although the targeted disruption of reproductive development among insects has been proposed as a novel control strategy for pest species, the current understanding of the physiology and molecular mechanisms of A. suturalis reproduction is very limited. In this study, we isolated a putative A. suturalis aspartic protease (AsAP) gene that is highly expressed in the fat body and ovaries of sexually mature females. The double-stranded RNA (dsRNA)-mediated knockdown of AsAP suppressed ovarian development and negatively impacted female fertility, which suggested that it plays an essential role in A. suturalis reproduction. The results of this study could help to expand our understanding of A. suturalis reproductive development and have the potential to facilitate the development of effective strategies for the better control of this pest species.