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MicroRNA Variants, Expression, and Putative Target Genes in the Gall Midge Mayetiola Destructor
- CHEN DU, JEFF R. WHITWORTH, MING S. CHEN
- Journal of Molecular Biology and Techniques 2017 v.1 no.1 pp. 103-115
- Mayetiola destructor, adults, genes, high-throughput nucleotide sequencing, insect larvae, insect pests, metabolism, microRNA, proteins, pupae
- MicroRNAs (miRNAs) play roles in nearly all biological processes and therefore may provide opportunities to develop new means to combat the Hessian fly, Mayetiola destructor, a gall midge and a destructive pest of wheat. This study conducted a comprehensive analysis of miRNAs via deep-sequencing samples from Hessian fly larvae, pupae and adults. A large number of miRNA species and variants were identified from approximately 30 million sequence reads. The abundance of miRNA species and variants based on sequence reads varied greatly among the three analyzed fly stages, with 319 exclusively expressed in adults, 30 exclusively expressed in pupae, and 30 exclusively expressed in larvae. For miRNAs expressed in all stages, a great proportion of the miRNAs exhibited more than four-fold variation in miRNA abundance among different stages, indicating that each developmental stage expressed a set of unique miRNA genes. In addition, 1516 putative target genes were identified for 486 miRNAs based on known criteria for miRNA target genes. The putative target genes are involved in a wide range of physiological processes from nutrient metabolism to effector proteins. Our results provide a foundation for future analysis of miRNA functions and application in the Hessian fly pest.