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J Insect Physiol. 2006 Jun;52(6):558-68. Epub 2006 Mar 31.

Ecdysteroid titers and developmental expression of ecdysteroid-regulated genes during metamorphosis of the yellow fever mosquito, Aedes aegypti (Diptera: Culicidae).

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  • 1Department of Entomology, College of Agriculture, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY 40546, USA.


Ecdysteroid titers and expression profiles of ecdysone-regulated genes were determined during the last instar larval and during the pupal stages of Aedes aegypti (Diptera: Culicidae). Three peaks of ecdysteroids occurring at approximately 24, 30-33 and 45-48h after ecdysis to the fourth instar larval stage were detected. In the pupa, a large peak of ecdysteroids occurred between 6 and 12h after ecdysis to the pupal stage. A small rise in ecdysteroids was also detected at the end of the pupal stage. Quantitative reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction analyses of the expression of ecdysone receptors and ecdysone-regulated genes showed that the peaks of expression of most of these genes coincided with the rise in ecdysteroid levels during the last larval and pupal stages. In the last larval stage, ecdysteroid titers and mRNA expression profiles of ecdysone-regulated genes are similar to those observed for Drosophila melanogaster. However, in the early pupal stage, both ecdysteroid titers and the expression of ecdysone-regulated genes are somewhat different from those observed in D. melanogaster, probably because the duration of the pupal stage in D. melanogaster is 84h while in Ae. aeqypti the duration is only 48h. These data which describe the relationship between ecdysteroid titers and mRNA levels of Ae. aegypti ecdysteroid-regulated genes lay a solid foundation for future studies on the hormonal regulation of development in mosquitoes.

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