Hemolymph proteins ofAnopheles gambiaelarvae infected byEscherichia coli

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Anopheles gambiae is a major vector of human malaria and its immune system in part determines the fate of ingested parasites. Proteins, hemocytes and fat body in hemolymph are critical components of this system, mediating both humoral and cellular defenses. Here we assessed differences in the hemolymph proteomes of water- and E. coli-pricked mosquito larvae by a gel-LC-MS approach. Among the 1756 proteins identified, 603 contained a signal peptide but accounted for two-third of the total protein amount on the quantitative basis. The sequence homology search indicated that 233 of the 1756 may be related to defense. In general, we did not detect substantial differences between the control and induced plasma samples in terms of protein numbers or levels. Protein distributions in the gel slices suggested post-translational modifications (e.g. proteolysis) and formation of serpin-protease complexes and high Mr immune complexes. Based on the twenty-five most abundant proteins, we further suggest that major functions of the larval hemolymph are storage, transport, and immunity. In summary, this study provided first data on constitution, levels, and possible functions of hemolymph proteins in the mosquito larvae, reflecting complex changes occurring in the fight against E. coli infection.

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