Induction of a peptide with activity against a broad spectrum of pathogens in the Aedes aegypti salivary gland, following Infection with Dengue Virus.
ABSTRACT: The ultimate stage of the transmission of Dengue Virus (DENV) to man is strongly dependent on crosstalk between the virus and the immune system of its vector Aedes aegypti (Ae. aegypti). Infection of the mosquito's salivary glands by DENV is the final step prior to viral transmission. Therefore, in the present study, we have determined the modulatory effects of DENV infection on the immune response in this organ by carrying out a functional genomic analysis of uninfected salivary glands and salivary glands of female Ae. aegypti mosquitoes infected with DENV. We have shown that DENV infection of salivary glands strongly up-regulates the expression of genes that encode proteins involved in the vector's innate immune response, including the immune deficiency (IMD) and Toll signalling pathways, and that it induces the expression of the gene encoding a putative anti-bacterial, cecropin-like, peptide (AAEL000598). Both the chemically synthesized non-cleaved, signal peptide-containing gene product of AAEL000598, and the cleaved, mature form, were found to exert, in addition to antibacterial activity, anti-DENV and anti-Chikungunya viral activity. However, in contrast to the mature form, the immature cecropin peptide was far more effective against Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) and, furthermore, had strong anti-parasite activity as shown by its ability to kill Leishmania spp. Results from circular dichroism analysis showed that the immature form more readily adopts a helical conformation which would help it to cause membrane permeabilization, thus permitting its transfer across hydrophobic cell surfaces, which may explain the difference in the anti-pathogenic activity between the two forms. The present study underscores not only the importance of DENV-induced cecropin in the innate immune response of Ae. aegypti, but also emphasizes the broad-spectrum anti-pathogenic activity of the immature, signal peptide-containing form of this peptide.
Project description:Dengue viruses (DENV) are generally maintained in a cycle which requires horizontal transmission via their arthropod vector, Ae. Aegypti, to the vertebrate host. One important consequence of this process is the interference of these arboviruses with both invertebrate and vertebrate immune systems. While infection of vertebrates causes disease, the presence of DENV gives rise to life-long, persistent infection in mosquitoes. The results of a comparative transcriptome analysis between DENV-infected and uninfected salivary glands revealed activation of both the immune deficiency (IMD) and the Toll pathways, as well as involvement of the putative antibacterial cecropin-like peptide (AAEL000598), in controlling DENV infection in Ae. aegypti. The mature form of this peptide was found to be active against DENV and Chikungunya viruses, whereas its precursor also had a strong anti-Leishmania effect. This study is the first to establish a comparative transcriptome analysis of DENV-infected and uninfected salivary glands and demonstrates that certain DENV-induced peptides, that are part of the IMD pathway, possess broad-spectrum anti-pathogenic activity and may have therapeutic potential in human. Overall design: Infectious blood meals were offered to 3-day-old, adult, female Ae. aegypti Liverpool mosquitoes using a silicone membrane feeder system (Alto et al., 2005). Human blood was combined with DENV-2 16681 to provide a blood meal titer of 5.106 plaque forming units (PFU)/ml. At different time-points after the blood meal, salivary glands were dissected in acid guanidium thiocyanate-phenol-chloroform (RNAble; Eurobio, France) or phosphate-buffered saline (PBS), and the samples were frozen at -70°C until use.
Project description:Dengue viruses (DENV) are generally maintained in a cycle which requires horizontal transmission via their arthropod vector, Ae. Aegypti, to the vertebrate host. One important consequence of this process is the interference of these arboviruses with both invertebrate and vertebrate immune systems. While infection of vertebrates causes disease, the presence of DENV gives rise to life-long, persistent infection in mosquitoes. The results of a comparative transcriptome analysis between DENV-infected and uninfected salivary glands revealed activation of both the immune deficiency (IMD) and the Toll pathways, as well as involvement of the putative antibacterial cecropin-like peptide (AAEL000598), in controlling DENV infection in Ae. aegypti. The mature form of this peptide was found to be active against DENV and Chikungunya viruses, whereas its precursor also had a strong anti-Leishmania effect. This study is the first to establish a comparative transcriptome analysis of DENV-infected and uninfected salivary glands and demonstrates that certain DENV-induced peptides, that are part of the IMD pathway, possess broad-spectrum anti-pathogenic activity and may have therapeutic potential in human. Infectious blood meals were offered to 3-day-old, adult, female Ae. aegypti Liverpool mosquitoes using a silicone membrane feeder system (Alto et al., 2005). Human blood was combined with DENV-2 16681 to provide a blood meal titer of 5.106 plaque forming units (PFU)/ml. At different time-points after the blood meal, salivary glands were dissected in acid guanidium thiocyanate-phenol-chloroform (RNAble; Eurobio, France) or phosphate-buffered saline (PBS), and the samples were frozen at -70°C until use.
Project description:Dengue virus (DENV) is the most important mosquito-transmitted flavivirus that is transmitted throughout the tropical and subtropical regions of the world. The primary mosquito vector of DENV in urban locations is Aedes aegypti. Key to understanding the transmission of DENV is the relationship between pathogen and vector. Accordingly, we report our preliminary characterization of the differentially expressed proteins from Ae. aegypti mosquitoes after DENV infection. We investigated the virus-vector interaction through changes in the proteome of the salivary glands of mosquitoes with disseminated DENV serotype 2 (DENV-2) infections using two-dimensional gel electrophoresis and identification by mass spectrometry. Our findings indicate that DENV-2 infection in the Ae. aegypti salivary gland alters the expression of structural, secreted, and metabolic proteins. These changes in the salivary gland proteome highlight the virally influenced environment caused by a DENV-2 infection and warrant additional investigation to determine if these differences extend to the expectorated saliva.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Zika (ZIKV) and Chikungunya (CHIKV) viruses are emerging Aedes-borne viruses that are spreading outside their known geographic range and causing wide-scale epidemics. It has been reported that these viruses can be transmitted efficiently by Ae. aegypti. Recent studies have shown that Ae. aegypti when transinfected with certain Wolbachia strains shows a reduced replication and dissemination of dengue (DENV), Chikungunya (CHIKV), and Yellow Fever (YFV) viruses. The aim of this study was to determine whether the wMel strain of Wolbachia introgressed onto a Singapore Ae. aegypti genetic background was able to limit ZIKV and CHIKV infection in the mosquito. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS:Five to seven-day old mosquitoes either infected or uninfected with wMel Wolbachia were orally infected with a Ugandan strain of ZIKV and several outbreak strains of CHIKV. The midgut and salivary glands of each mosquito were sampled at days 6, 9 and 13 days post infectious blood meal to determine midgut infection and salivary glands dissemination rates, respectively. In general, all wild type Ae. aegypti were found to have high ZIKV and CHIKV infections in their midguts and salivary glands, across all sampling days, compared to Wolbachia infected counterparts. Median viral titre for all viruses in Wolbachia infected mosquitoes were significantly lower across all time points when compared to wild type mosquitoes. Most significantly, all but two and one of the wMel infected mosquitoes had no detectable ZIKV and CHIKV, respectively, in their salivary glands at 14 days post-infectious blood meal. CONCLUSIONS:Our results showed that wMel limits both ZIKV and CHIKV infection when introgressed into a Singapore Ae. aegypti genetic background. These results also strongly suggest that female Aedes aegypti carrying Wolbachia will have a reduced capacity to transmit ZIKV and CHIKV.
Project description:Dengue virus (DENV) is an enveloped flavivirus with a positive-sense RNA genome transmitted by Aedes mosquitoes, causing the most important arthropod-borne viral disease affecting humans. Relatively few cis-acting RNA regulatory elements have been described in the DENV coding-region. Here, by introducing silent mutations into a DENV-2 infectious clone, we identify the conserved capsid-coding region 1 (CCR1), an RNA sequence element that regulates viral replication in mammalian cells and to a greater extent in Ae. albopictus mosquito cells. These defects were confirmed in vivo, resulting in decreased replication in Ae. aegypti mosquito bodies and dissemination to the salivary glands. Furthermore, CCR1 does not regulate translation, RNA synthesis or virion retention but likely modulates assembly, as mutations resulted in the release of non-infectious viral particles from both cell types. Understanding the role of CCR1 could help characterize the poorly-defined stage of assembly in the DENV life cycle and uncover novel anti-viral targets.
Project description:Only adult female mosquitoes feed on blood, while both genders take sugar meals. Accordingly, several compounds associated with blood feeding (i.e. vasodilators, anti-clotting, anti-platelets) are found only in female glands, while enzymes associated with sugar feeding or antimicrobials (such as lysozyme) are found in the glands of both sexes. We performed de novo assembly of reads from adult Aedes aegypti female and male salivary gland libraries (285 and 90 million reads, respectively). By mapping back the reads to the assembled contigs, plus mapping the reads from a publicly available Ae. aegypti library from adult whole bodies, we identified 360 transcripts (including splice variants and alleles) overexpressed tenfold or more in the glands when compared to whole bodies. Moreover, among these, 207 were overexpressed fivefold or more in female vs. male salivary glands, 85 were near equally expressed and 68 were overexpressed in male glands. We call in particular the attention to C-type lectins, angiopoietins, female-specific Antigen 5, the 9.7 kDa, 12-14 kDa, 23.5 kDa, 62/34 kDa, 4.2 kDa, proline-rich peptide, SG8, 8.7 kDa family and SGS fragments: these polypeptides are all of unknown function, but due to their overexpression in female salivary glands and putative secretory nature they are expected to affect host physiology. We have also found many transposons (some of which novel) and several endogenous viral transcripts (probably acquired by horizontal transfer) which are overexpressed in the salivary glands and may play some role in tissue-specific gene regulation or represent a mechanism of virus interference. This work contributes to a near definitive catalog of male and female salivary gland transcripts from Ae. aegypti, which will help to direct further studies aiming at the functional characterization of the many transcripts with unknown function and the understanding of their role in vector-host interaction and pathogen transmission.
Project description:Dengue viruses (DENV) are considered one of the most important emerging pathogens and dengue disease is a global health threat. The geographic expansion of dengue viruses has led to co-circulation of all four dengue serotypes making it imperative that new DENV control strategies be devised.Here we characterize dengue serotype-specific innate immune responses in Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus using DENV from Puerto Rico (PR).Ae. aegypti and Ae. albopictus were infected with dengue serotype 1 and 2 isolated from Puerto Rico. DENV infected mosquito samples were collected and temporal change in expression of selected innate immune response pathway genes analyzed by quantitative real time PCR.The Toll pathway is involved in anti-dengue response in Ae. aegypti, and Ae. albopictus. Infections with PR DENV- 1 elicited a stronger response from genes of the Toll immune pathway than PR DENV-2 in Ae. aegypti but in infected Ae. albopictus expression of Toll pathway genes tended to be similar between the serotypes. Two genes (a ribosomal S5 protein gene and a nimrod-like gene) from Ae. albopictus were expressed in response to DENV.These studies revealed a role for antiviral genes in DENV serotype-specific interactions with DENV vectors, demonstrated that infections with DENV-2 can modulate the Toll immune response pathway in Ae. aegypti and elucidated candidate molecules that might be used to interfere with serotype specific vector-virus interactions.
Project description:Dengue fever is the most important arboviral disease world-wide, with Aedes aegypti being the major vector. Interactions between the mosquito host and dengue viruses (DENV) are complex and vector competence varies among geographically-distinct Ae. aegypti populations. Additionally, dengue is caused by four antigenically-distinct viral serotypes (DENV1-4), each with multiple genotypes. Each virus genotype interacts differently with vertebrate and invertebrate hosts. Analyses of alterations in mosquito transcriptional profiles during DENV infection are expected to provide the basis for identifying networks of genes involved in responses to viruses and contribute to the molecular-genetic understanding of vector competence. In addition, this knowledge is anticipated to support the development of novel disease-control strategies. RNA-seq technology was used to assess genome-wide changes in transcript abundance at 1, 4 and 14 days following DENV2 infection in carcasses, midguts and salivary glands of the Ae. aegypti Chetumal strain. DENV2 affected the expression of 397 Ae. aegypti genes, most of which were down-regulated by viral infection. Differential accumulation of transcripts was mainly tissue- and time-specific. Comparisons of our data with other published reports reveal conservation of functional classes, but limited concordance of specific mosquito genes responsive to DENV2 infection. These results indicate the necessity of additional studies of mosquito-DENV interactions, specifically those focused on recently-derived mosquito strains with multiple dengue virus serotypes and genotypes.
Project description:Aedes aegypti mosquitoes are the main vectors of dengue viruses to humans. Understanding their biology and interactions with the pathogen are prerequisites for development of dengue transmission control strategies. Mosquito salivary glands are organs involved directly in pathogen transmission to vertebrate hosts. Information on the spatial distribution of gene expression in these organs is expected to assist in the development of novel disease control strategies, including those that entail the release of transgenic mosquitoes with impaired vector competence.We report here the hybridization in situ patterns of 30 transcripts expressed in the salivary glands of adult Ae. aegypti females. Distinct spatial accumulation patterns were identified. The products of twelve genes are localized exclusively in the proximal-lateral lobes. Among these, three accumulate preferentially in the most anterior portion of the proximal-lateral lobe. This pattern revealed a salivary gland cell type previously undescribed in Ae. aegypti, which was validated by transmission electron microscopy. Five distinct gene products accumulate in the distal-lateral lobes and another five localize in the medial lobe. Seven transcripts are found in the distal-lateral and medial lobes. The transcriptional product of one gene accumulates in proximal- and distal-lateral lobes. Seven genes analyzed by quantitative PCR are expressed constitutively. The most abundant salivary gland transcripts are those localized within the proximal-lateral lobes, while previous work has shown that the distal-lateral lobes are the most active in protein synthesis. This incongruity suggests a role for translational regulation in mosquito saliva production.Transgenic mosquitoes with reduced vector competence have been proposed as tools for the control of dengue virus transmission. Expression of anti-dengue effector molecules in the distal-lateral lobes of Ae. aegypti salivary glands has been shown to reduce prevalence and mean intensities of viral infection. We anticipate greater efficiency of viral suppression if effector genes are expressed in all lobes of the salivary glands. Based on our data, a minimum of two promoters is necessary to drive the expression of one or more anti-dengue genes in all cells of the female salivary glands.
Project description:This study was designed to assess whether churches in endemic dengue districts in Merida, Mexico provide suitable breeding habitats for mosquitoes and are potential sites for dengue virus (DENV) transmission. Churches were inspected for immature and adult mosquitoes once every week from November 2015 to October 2016. A total of 10,997 immatures of five species were collected. The most abundant species were Aedes aegypti (6,051) and Culex quinquefasciatus (3,018). The most common source of immature Ae. aegypti were buckets followed by disposable containers. Adult collections yielded 21,226 mosquitoes of nine species. The most common species were Cx. quinquefasciatus (15,215) and Ae. aegypti (3,902). Aedes aegypti were found all year long. Female Ae. aegypti (1,380) were sorted into pools (166) and assayed for flavivirus RNA by RT-PCR and Sanger sequencing. Two pools were positive for DENV (DENV-1 and 2). In conclusion, we demonstrated that some churches in Merida are infested with mosquitoes all year long and they potentially serve as sites for DENV transmission and should therefore be considered for inclusion in mosquito and arboviruses control and surveillance efforts.