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Expression and activation of Daphnia pulex Caspase-3 are involved in regulation of aging

Tong, Qiaoqiong, Zhang, Mengmeng, Cao, Xiao, Xu, Shanliang, Wang, Danli, Zhao, Yunlong
Gene 2017 v.634 pp. 37-46
Daphnia pulex, Western blotting, adults, caspase-3, cell death, complementary DNA, correlation, gene expression, genes, in situ hybridization, messenger RNA, molecular weight, nucleotide sequences, reproduction, zymogens
Death-mediating proteases such as Caspases have been implicated in aging. Remarkably, active Caspase-3 can trigger widespread damage and degeneration, playing a key role in causing cell death. In order to explore the relationship between Caspase-3 and aging in Daphnia pulex, we cloned and analyzed the full-length cDNA sequence of its Caspase-3 gene. Both mRNA expression and activity of D. pulex Caspase-3 increased with age. Moreover, different forms of Caspase-3 appeared with aging. The expression of casp3-L was higher and decreased with age, while that of casp3-S was weak and increased with age, consistent with the trend in Caspase-3 activity. Mhc mRNA expression declined over time and was negatively correlated with age and Caspase-3. In situ hybridization results showed that Caspase-3 mRNA was expressed in different growth and reproduction stages, and its expression levels in embryos and larva were lower than that in adult D. pulex. Western blot analysis revealed the presence of Caspase-3 in the form of zymogens with a molecular weight of ~36kDa. Overall, this study explored age-associated gene regulation to provide a basis for the molecular mechanism of D. pulex reproductive conversion.