Tissue-specific immune gene expression in the migratory locust, Locusta Migratoria

Tamara Pulpitel*, Mathieu Pernice, Stephen J. Simpson, Fleur Ponton

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)
11 Downloads (Pure)


The ability of hosts to respond to infection involves several complex immune recognition pathways. Broadly conserved pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs) allow individuals to target a range of invading microbes. Recently, studies on insect innate immunity have found evidence that a single pathogen can activate different immune pathways across species. In this study, expression changes in immune genes encoding peptidoglycan-recognition protein SA (PGRP-SA), gram-negative binding protein 1 (GNBP1) and prophenoloxidase (ProPO) were investigated in Locusta migratoria, following an immune challenge using injected lipopolysaccharide (LPS) solution from Escherichia coli. Since immune activation might also be tissue-specific, gene expression levels were followed across a range of tissue types. For PGRP-SA, expression increased in response to LPS within all seven of the tissue-types assayed and differed significantly between tissues. Expression of GNBP1 similarly varied across tissue types, yet showed no clear expression difference between LPS-injected and uninfected locusts. Increases in ProPO expression in response to LPS, however, could only be detected in the gut sections. This study has revealed tissue-specific immune response to add a new level of complexity to insect immune studies. In addition to variation in recognition pathways identified in previous works, tissue-specificity should be carefully considered in similar works.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)368-380
Number of pages13
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2015
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Copyright the Author(s) 2015. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.


  • Gene expression
  • Insect immunity
  • Locust
  • Tissue-specificity


Dive into the research topics of 'Tissue-specific immune gene expression in the migratory locust, Locusta Migratoria'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this