Three protein disulfide isomerases from Haemaphysalis longicornis ticks (designated as HlPDI-1, HlPDI-2, and HlPDI-3) were previously identified. In order to further analyze their biological functions, the dsRNA of each HlPDI gene and one dsRNA combination of HlPDI-1/HlPDI-3 were separately injected into female ticks. Reduction of gene and protein expression of HlPDIs by RNA interference (RNAi) was demonstrated by real-time PCR, RT-PCR and Western blot analysis. In single dsRNA-injected groups, HlPDI-1 RNAi impacted tick blood feeding and oviposition, HlPDI-2 RNAi impacted tick viability and HlPDI-3 RNAi had no significant impact by itself. However, the injection of a combination of HlPDI-1/HlPDI-3 dsRNA had synergistic effects on tick viability. Furthermore, the midgut and cuticle were severely damaged in HlPDI-2 dsRNA-injected ticks and HlPDI-1/HlPDI-3 dsRNA-injected ticks, respectively, and disruption of HlPDI genes led to a significant reduction of disulfide bond-containing vitellogenin (Vg) expression in ticks. These results indicate that PDIs from H. longicornis are involved in blood feeding, viability and oocyte development, probably by mediating the formation of disulfide bond-containing proteins of the ticks and the formation of basement membrane and cuticle components such as extracellular matrix (ECM). This is the first report on the functional analysis of PDI family molecules as well as the interactions of PDI and other molecules in blood-feeding arthropods.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology
- Insect Science