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Surface lipidome of the lone star tick, Amblyomma americanum, provides leads on semiochemicals and lipid metabolism
- Renthal, Robert, Lohmeyer, Kim, Borges, Lígia M.F., Pérez de León, Adalberto A.
- Ticks and tick-borne diseases 2019 v.10 no.1 pp. 138-145
- Amblyomma americanum, adults, arachidonic acid, cattle, cholesteryl esters, coatings, eggs, females, host seeking, lipid metabolism, males, mass spectrometry, sex pheromones, spermatozoa, sphingolipids, ticks, wax esters
- Lipids extracted from the surface of the lone star tick, Amblyomma americanum, were analyzed by high resolution mass spectrometry. Prior to lipid extraction, the adult ticks were either unfed or fed on cattle, and the fed ticks were in groups either containing males and females together, or containing only males or females. Cholesteryl esters were found on the surfaces of fed females, and they may provide a more complete description of the composition of the mounting sex pheromone. Dihydrocholesteryl esters were detected on the surfaces of unfed males and females, suggesting a possible role in survival during host-seeking. Dehydrodeoxyecdysone, found on fed females, could be a component of the genital sex pheromone. The most abundant polar surface lipids detected were acylglycerides. High levels of sphingolipids and glycerophospholipids on males fed separately might be derived, in part, from sperm development. A high level of a 20:4 fatty acid, presumably arachidonic acid, was found on the surface of fed females, indicating that it may be a component of the genital sex pheromone. A high level of docosenamide was found on the surface of fed females. Wax esters were found on the surfaces of fed ticks but not on unfed ticks. These esters could be involved in elasticity of the cuticle of engorged females or in wax coating of eggs. N-acylethanolamines were found on the surfaces of male and female ticks fed together, and on male ticks fed separately, but were absent or at low levels on females fed separately and on unfed ticks. This pattern suggests a possible role as a metabolic coordination primer pheromone.