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The profiles of red fluorescent proteins with antinucleopolyhedrovirus activity in races of the silkworm Bombyx mori

Sunagar, Santosh G., Savanurmath, Chandrashekhar J., Hinchigeri, Shivayogeppa B.
Journal of insect physiology 2011 v.57 no.12 pp. 1707-1714
Bombyx mori, absorption, bioassays, biomarkers, chromatography, digestive system, fluorescence, multivoltine habit, proteins, races, silkworms, spectral analysis, viruses, India
Partially purified red fluorescent proteins (RFPs) secured from the gut juice of 5th-instar multivoltine and bivoltine silkworm races were observed as several bands in electrophoretograms and chromatographic eluates. Interestingly, different races of silkworms had varying numbers of fluorescent protein bands: 11 in Pure Mysore (resistant), 11 in Nistari (resistant), 4 in CSR₂ (moderately susceptible) and 1 in NB₄D₂ (highly susceptible). Bioassay experiments indicated that the fluorescent bands had antinucleopolyhedrovirus (antiNPV) activity. The molar extinction coefficients and fluorescence quantum yields of all RFPs were estimated. The purified tetrapyrroles were characterized by UV–visible absorption and fluorescence spectral analyses. All tetrapyrrole moieties associated with RFPs were found to be different and characteristic of the fluorescent bands. The resulting qualitative and quantitative differences among the individual RFPs from various races of silkworm were related to the susceptibilities of the silkworms to the viral disease. Moreover, light was found to be essential for the synthesis of RFPs, and, therefore, the role of light in the synthesis of RFPs was evaluated. Thus, this work may elucidate the process of RFP synthesis in silkworm, which may be used as a biomarker to measure the degree of susceptibility of silkworm races to NPV. Therefore, the characteristic band pattern may be used as an indicator to define the relative resistance of a race towards the specific virus.