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Improvement of pest resistance in transgenic tobacco plants expressing dsRNA of an insect-associated gene EcR.

Zhu JQ, Liu S, Ma Y, Zhang JQ, Qi HS, Wei ZJ, Yao Q, Zhang WQ, Li S - PLoS ONE (2012)

Bottom Line: The adoption of pest-resistant transgenic plants to reduce yield loss and pesticide utilization has been successful in the past three decades.When H. armigera larvae were fed with the whole transgenic tobacco plants expressing EcR dsRNA, resistance to H. armigera was significantly improved in transgenic plants.Meanwhile, when H. armigera larvae were fed with leaves of transgenic tobacco plants expressing EcR dsRNA, its EcR mRNA level was dramatically decreased causing molting defects and larval lethality.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Key Laboratory of Insect Developmental and Evolutionary Biology, Institute of Plant Physiology and Ecology, Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai, China.

ABSTRACT
The adoption of pest-resistant transgenic plants to reduce yield loss and pesticide utilization has been successful in the past three decades. Recently, transgenic plant expressing double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) targeting pest genes emerges as a promising strategy for improving pest resistance in crops. The steroid hormone, 20-hydroxyecdysone (20E), predominately controls insect molting via its nuclear receptor complex, EcR-USP. Here we report that pest resistance is improved in transgenic tobacco plants expressing dsRNA of EcR from the cotton bollworm, Helicoverpa armigera, a serious lepidopteran pest for a variety of crops. When H. armigera larvae were fed with the whole transgenic tobacco plants expressing EcR dsRNA, resistance to H. armigera was significantly improved in transgenic plants. Meanwhile, when H. armigera larvae were fed with leaves of transgenic tobacco plants expressing EcR dsRNA, its EcR mRNA level was dramatically decreased causing molting defects and larval lethality. In addition, the transgenic tobacco plants expressing H. armigera EcR dsRNA were also resistant to another lepidopteran pest, the beet armyworm, Spodoptera exigua, due to the high similarity in the nucleotide sequences of their EcR genes. This study provides additional evidence that transgenic plant expressing dsRNA targeting insect-associated genes is able to improve pest resistance.

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Resistance to H. armigera is improved in transgenic tobacco plants expressing HaEcR dsRNA.One transgenic tobacco plant expressing GFP dsRNA was used as a control, and 4 different transgenic tobacco plants expressing HaEcR dsRNA were used as experimental groups. Similar sizes of ∼45-day-old homozygous transgenic plants and day 1 of 2nd instar larvae were utilized in the bioassay. Thirty H. armigera larvae were randomly released on the top mature leaves to evaluate dsRNA effects of the whole transgenic plants. After 1 week of feeding, transgenic tobacco plants expressing HaEcR dsRNA exhibited higher resistance to H. armigera than the control (A). After 3 weeks of feeding, the transgenic tobacco plants expressing HaEcR dsRNA are much less damaged (B).
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pone-0038572-g003: Resistance to H. armigera is improved in transgenic tobacco plants expressing HaEcR dsRNA.One transgenic tobacco plant expressing GFP dsRNA was used as a control, and 4 different transgenic tobacco plants expressing HaEcR dsRNA were used as experimental groups. Similar sizes of ∼45-day-old homozygous transgenic plants and day 1 of 2nd instar larvae were utilized in the bioassay. Thirty H. armigera larvae were randomly released on the top mature leaves to evaluate dsRNA effects of the whole transgenic plants. After 1 week of feeding, transgenic tobacco plants expressing HaEcR dsRNA exhibited higher resistance to H. armigera than the control (A). After 3 weeks of feeding, the transgenic tobacco plants expressing HaEcR dsRNA are much less damaged (B).

Mentions: Fifty H. armigera larvae were fed with a detached mature leaf maintained in an 80 mm sterile plastic flask. Three similar leaves from the same plant were repeated in a feeding bioassay. The other conditions are the same as Figure 3. (A) Leaves from transgenic tobacco plants expressing HaEcR dsRNA were ingested significantly less by H. armigera larvae after 5 days of incubation in comparison with those expressing GFP dsRNA. (B) The growth of H. armigera larvae feeding with transgenic tobacco leaves expressing HaEcR dsRNA was significantly delayed and their body sizes reduced. (C) Feeding with transgenic tobacco leaves expressing HaEcR dsRNA (No. 1–4) caused significantly higher lethality than in the control.


Improvement of pest resistance in transgenic tobacco plants expressing dsRNA of an insect-associated gene EcR.

Zhu JQ, Liu S, Ma Y, Zhang JQ, Qi HS, Wei ZJ, Yao Q, Zhang WQ, Li S - PLoS ONE (2012)

Resistance to H. armigera is improved in transgenic tobacco plants expressing HaEcR dsRNA.One transgenic tobacco plant expressing GFP dsRNA was used as a control, and 4 different transgenic tobacco plants expressing HaEcR dsRNA were used as experimental groups. Similar sizes of ∼45-day-old homozygous transgenic plants and day 1 of 2nd instar larvae were utilized in the bioassay. Thirty H. armigera larvae were randomly released on the top mature leaves to evaluate dsRNA effects of the whole transgenic plants. After 1 week of feeding, transgenic tobacco plants expressing HaEcR dsRNA exhibited higher resistance to H. armigera than the control (A). After 3 weeks of feeding, the transgenic tobacco plants expressing HaEcR dsRNA are much less damaged (B).
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3369839&req=5

pone-0038572-g003: Resistance to H. armigera is improved in transgenic tobacco plants expressing HaEcR dsRNA.One transgenic tobacco plant expressing GFP dsRNA was used as a control, and 4 different transgenic tobacco plants expressing HaEcR dsRNA were used as experimental groups. Similar sizes of ∼45-day-old homozygous transgenic plants and day 1 of 2nd instar larvae were utilized in the bioassay. Thirty H. armigera larvae were randomly released on the top mature leaves to evaluate dsRNA effects of the whole transgenic plants. After 1 week of feeding, transgenic tobacco plants expressing HaEcR dsRNA exhibited higher resistance to H. armigera than the control (A). After 3 weeks of feeding, the transgenic tobacco plants expressing HaEcR dsRNA are much less damaged (B).
Mentions: Fifty H. armigera larvae were fed with a detached mature leaf maintained in an 80 mm sterile plastic flask. Three similar leaves from the same plant were repeated in a feeding bioassay. The other conditions are the same as Figure 3. (A) Leaves from transgenic tobacco plants expressing HaEcR dsRNA were ingested significantly less by H. armigera larvae after 5 days of incubation in comparison with those expressing GFP dsRNA. (B) The growth of H. armigera larvae feeding with transgenic tobacco leaves expressing HaEcR dsRNA was significantly delayed and their body sizes reduced. (C) Feeding with transgenic tobacco leaves expressing HaEcR dsRNA (No. 1–4) caused significantly higher lethality than in the control.

Bottom Line: The adoption of pest-resistant transgenic plants to reduce yield loss and pesticide utilization has been successful in the past three decades.When H. armigera larvae were fed with the whole transgenic tobacco plants expressing EcR dsRNA, resistance to H. armigera was significantly improved in transgenic plants.Meanwhile, when H. armigera larvae were fed with leaves of transgenic tobacco plants expressing EcR dsRNA, its EcR mRNA level was dramatically decreased causing molting defects and larval lethality.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Key Laboratory of Insect Developmental and Evolutionary Biology, Institute of Plant Physiology and Ecology, Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai, China.

ABSTRACT
The adoption of pest-resistant transgenic plants to reduce yield loss and pesticide utilization has been successful in the past three decades. Recently, transgenic plant expressing double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) targeting pest genes emerges as a promising strategy for improving pest resistance in crops. The steroid hormone, 20-hydroxyecdysone (20E), predominately controls insect molting via its nuclear receptor complex, EcR-USP. Here we report that pest resistance is improved in transgenic tobacco plants expressing dsRNA of EcR from the cotton bollworm, Helicoverpa armigera, a serious lepidopteran pest for a variety of crops. When H. armigera larvae were fed with the whole transgenic tobacco plants expressing EcR dsRNA, resistance to H. armigera was significantly improved in transgenic plants. Meanwhile, when H. armigera larvae were fed with leaves of transgenic tobacco plants expressing EcR dsRNA, its EcR mRNA level was dramatically decreased causing molting defects and larval lethality. In addition, the transgenic tobacco plants expressing H. armigera EcR dsRNA were also resistant to another lepidopteran pest, the beet armyworm, Spodoptera exigua, due to the high similarity in the nucleotide sequences of their EcR genes. This study provides additional evidence that transgenic plant expressing dsRNA targeting insect-associated genes is able to improve pest resistance.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus