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Dev Comp Immunol. 2010 Oct;34(10):1129-36. doi: 10.1016/j.dci.2010.06.005. Epub 2010 Jun 23.

A different repertoire of Galleria mellonella antimicrobial peptides in larvae challenged with bacteria and fungi.

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Department of Analytical Biochemistry, Faculty of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Biotechnology, Jagiellonian University, Gronostajowa 7 St., 30-387 Krakow, Poland.


To date, functioning of insect humoral immune response is especially well described in Diptera. The mechanisms of pathogen recognition, activation of signaling pathways and regulation of antimicrobial defense peptide expression are relatively well known. The present paper demonstrates evidence that the immune system of the Lepidoptera moth, Galleria mellonella, is also able to distinguish between different classes of microorganisms and responds to the invading pathogen accordingly. G. mellonella larvae were challenged with Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria as well as with yeast and filamentous fungus cells. Subsequently, 24, 48 and 72 h after immunization, the concentrations of lysozyme and six defense peptides were determined in the hemolymph by the HPLC technique. The compounds studied demonstrated variability both in the kinetics of the increase as well as in the concentrations reached. The Gram-negative bacterium and filamentous fungus were particularly effective immunogens, especially affecting the levels of lysozyme, Galleria defensin, proline-rich peptide 2 and cecropin D-like peptide.

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