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Ann N Y Acad Sci. 1994 Apr 15;712:117-30.

Regulation of antibacterial protein synthesis following infection and during metamorphosis of Manduca sexta.

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Department of Entomology, Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana 47907-1158.


Larvae of the tobacco hornworm, Manduca sexta, respond to intrahemocoelic injection of bacteria or bacterial cell wall peptidoglycan with induced synthesis of a suite of antibacterial proteins. Previous studies have demonstrated peptidoglycan regulation of the synthesis of these antibacterial proteins. In addition to eliciting enhanced synthesis of antibacterial proteins, peptidoglycan fragments also elicit a "malaise syndrome" characterized by decreased feeding and growth, delayed metamorphosis, and altered excretion. We speculate that these symptoms may be components of a mechanism to flush out and sterilize the midgut lumen, one of the primary sources of bacterial infection in insects. Studies of naive larvae have demonstrated the accumulation of lysozyme in the differentiating pupal midgut epithelium and release of lysozyme into the pupal midgut lumen after the larval midgut epithelium has been sloughed off. These observations have been extended by the identification of potent bactericidal activity against E. coli and immunoreactive hemolin, together with lysozyme, in the lumen of the newly differentiated pupal midgut.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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