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Insect Sci 2023 Apr 01;302:305-320. doi: 10.1111/1744-7917.13098.
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Functional characterization of sex pheromone receptors in Spodoptera frugiperda, S. exigua, and S. litura moths.

Zhang S , Liu F , Yang B , Liu Y , Wang GR .

Moths possess an extremely sensitive and diverse sex pheromone processing system, in which pheromone receptors (PRs) are essential to ensure communication between mating partners. Functional properties of some PRs are conserved among species, which is important for reproduction. However, functional differentiation has occurred in some homologous PR genes, which may drive species divergence. Here, using genome analysis, 17 PR genes were identified from Spodoptera frugiperda, S. exigua, and S. litura, which belong to 6 homologous groups (odorant receptor [OR]6, 11, 13, 16, 56, and 62); of which 6 PR genes (OR6, OR11, OR13, OR16, OR56, and OR62) were identified in S. frugiperda and S. exigua, and 5 PR genes were identified in S. litura, excluding OR62. Using heterologous expression in Xenopus oocytes, we characterized the functions of PR orthologs including OR6, OR56, and OR62, which have not been clarified in previous studies. OR6 orthologs were specifically tuned to (Z,E)-9,12-tetradecadienyl acetate (Z9,E12-14:OAc), and OR62 orthologs were robustly tuned to Z7-12:OAc in S. frugiperda and S. exigua. The optimal ligand for OR56 was Z7-12:OAc in S. frugiperda, but responses were minimal in S. exigua and S. litura. In addition, SfruOR6 was male antennae-specific, whereas SfruOR56 and SfruOR62 were male antennae-biased. Our study further clarified the functional properties of PRs in 3 Spodoptera moth species, providing a comprehensive understanding of the mechanisms of intraspecific communication and interspecific isolation in Spodoptera.

PubMed ID: 35932282
Article link: Insect Sci
Grant support: [+]

Genes referenced: tcf3