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J Insect Physiol. 2009 Jan;55(1):70-7. doi: 10.1016/j.jinsphys.2008.10.007. Epub 2008 Dec 2.

Suppression of ovarian development and vitellogenin gene expression in the adult diapause of the two-spotted spider mite Tetranychus urticae.

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  • 1Department of Biology and Geosciences, Graduate School of Science, Osaka City University, Osaka 558-8585, Japan.


Tetranychus urticae (Acari: Tetranychidae) possesses a sac-like ovary with characteristic oocytes that protrude from the ovarian surface. In nondiapause females, transparent oocytes became opaque with yolk deposition between days 0 and 1 in the adult stage at 20 degrees C. In diapause females, however, ovarian development ceased at a stage having transparent oocytes without yolk deposition; this stage corresponded to the day-0 stage of the nondiapause females. Four partial fragments of the vitellogenin (Vg) genes of T. urticae were isolated. This is the first report on the Vg genes of mites. The deduced amino acid sequences of these four Vg gene fragments contained the von Willebrand factor D domain and the GLCG motif, which were reported to be the common features of Vg sequences in insects and ticks. Northern blot analysis did not detect Vg mRNA in the diapause adult females of T. urticae. It is, therefore, suggested that diapause mites do not synthesize Vg mRNA and that vitellogenesis is regulated at the transcriptional level in diapause.

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