Molecular characterization and responsive expression of a defender against apoptotic cell death homologue from the Hessian fly, Mayetiola destructor.Comp Biochem Physiol B Biochem Mol Biol. 2008 Mar; 149(3):517-23.CB
Apoptosis or programmed cell death is an active process occurring in multicellular organisms to maintain growth and development. The Hessian fly, Mayetiola destructor, is rapidly emerging as a model insect species to study insect-plant interactions and to decipher some exceptional physiological phenomena. In this study, we report the characterization and expression profiles of a putative Hessian fly defender against apoptotic cell death (DAD1) homologue designated MdesDAD1. The deduced amino acid sequence of MdesDAD1 revealed significant similarity (75% identity, 9e-42) to other insect and non-insect DAD1 sequences. Phylogenetic analysis grouped MdesDAD1 within a sub-clade consisting of other insect DAD1 homologues. Quantitative analysis indicated constitutive levels of MdesDAD1 mRNA in all the tissues examined but an altered expression pattern during development, wherein the highest mRNA levels observed were prior to pupation. Most interestingly, MdesDAD1 transcript was found to be up-regulated during incompatible (larvae reared on resistant wheat) Hessian fly/wheat interactions compared to compatible (larvae reared on susceptible wheat) interactions. These results suggest MdesDAD1 to have a putative role in the inhibition of unwanted apoptosis triggered during development and in incompatible Hessian fly/wheat interactions. The results obtained provide clues to plausible insect and host-plant factors that could be responsible for the induction of MdesDAD1.