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Molecular and functional characterization of multiple aquaporin water channel proteins from the western tarnished plant bug, Lygus hesperus

Jeffrey A. Fabrick, Jinxin Pei, J. Joe Hull, Andrea J. Yool
Insect biochemistry and molecular biology 2014 v.45 pp. 125-140
Lygus hesperus, Xenopus laevis, aquaporins, glycerol, homeostasis, insect pests, molecular cloning, oocytes, phylogeny, solutes, transcription (genetics)
Aquaporins (AQPs) are integral membrane channel proteins that facilitate the bidirectional transfer of water or other small solutes across biological membranes involved in numerous essential physiological processes. In arthropods, AQPs belong to several subfamilies, which contribute to osmoregulation, respiration, cryoprotection, anhydrobiosis, and excretion. We cloned and characterized five novel AQPs from the western tarnished plant bug, Lygus hesperus, a polyphagous insect pest of food and fiber crops throughout western North America. The L. hesperus AQPs (LhAQP1-5) belong to different phylogenetic subfamilies, have unique transcription profiles and cellular localizations, and all transport water (but not glycerol) when heterologously expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes. Our results demonstrate that multiple AQPs with possible compensatory functions are produced in L. hesperus that likely play important roles in maintaining water homeostasis in this important insect pest.