Suppressing the activity of trehalase with validamycin disrupts the trehalose and chitin biosynthesis pathways in the rice brown planthopper, Nilaparvata lugens.Pestic Biochem Physiol 2017; 137:81-90PB
Trehalase (TRE) is a key enzyme in trehalose degradation and has important functions in insect growth and chitin synthesis. Though validamycin has the potential for pest control by suppressing TRE activities, it is not known whether validamycin acts on both trehalose and chitin metabolism. TRE1 and TRE2 activities and glucose and glycogen contents decreased significantly after the injection of different doses of validamycin solution compared with the control group, while the trehalose content increased significantly. Overall, it showed that about 13 to 38% insects was appeared abnormal phenotypes, and 10 to 57% of insects died 48h after injection of solutions with different concentrations of validamycin; the chitin content also decreased significantly. Validamycin altered the relative expression levels of trehalose, glycogen and chitin metabolism-related genes by suppressing the activities of two TREs. We showed that the expression levels of three TRE and two trehalose-6-phosphate synthase (TPS) genes increased, while the expression levels of GP; CHS1 and its two transcripts, CHS1a, CHS1b; six chitinases, including Cht3, Cht4, Cht5, Cht6, Cht7, Cht9; and the HK, G6PI2, GFAT, GNPNA, PAGM1, UAP, VVL, CI and AP genes decreased significantly 48h after the injection of any validamycin concentration compared with the control group. These results demonstrate that by inhibiting the activities of two TREs, validamycin alters N. lugens chitin synthesis and degradation and affects trehalose and chitin metabolism-related gene expression. The development of TRE inhibitors may provide effective pest control in the future.