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Cell Microbiol. 2008 Oct;10(10):2118-28. doi: 10.1111/j.1462-5822.2008.01195.x. Epub 2008 Jul 10.

Endoparasitoid wasp bracovirus-mediated inhibition of hemolin function and lepidopteran host immunosuppression.

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Insect Molecular Genetics and Biotechnology Group, Institute of Biology, National Centre for Scientific Research Demokritos, 153 10 Aghia Paraskevi Attikis, Athens, Greece.


Successful embryonic development of parasitoid wasps in lepidopteran hosts is achieved through co-injection of polydna viruses whose gene products are thought to target the immune responses of the host. One gene product of the endosymbiont bracovirus of the parasitic wasp Cotesia rubecula, CrV1, has been reported to inhibit the immune responses of its endoparasitized lepidopteran host through interference with the haematocyte cytoskeletal structure. Here we establish that CcV1, the Cotesia congregata bracovirus orthologue of CrV1, is also uptaken by lepidopteran haemocytes and haemocyte-like established cell lines, but we also report on a different function of CcV1, which is highly relevant to the inhibition of the host immune responses and is based on its direct interaction with the pattern recognition molecule hemolin. Recombinant CcV1 inhibits hemolin functions, such as lipopolysaccharide binding and bacterial agglutination as well as bacterial phagocytosis by haemocytes and haemocyte-like cell lines, producing functional phenotypes equivalent to those observed to arise from RNAi-based inhibition of hemolin gene expression. Finally, we show that CcV1 and hemolin colocalize on the membrane surface of hemolin-expressing cells, a finding suggesting that CcV1 may be uptaken by haemocytes and inhibit haemocyte function as a result of its interaction with membrane-anchored hemolin.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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