An ecdysone receptor from the pentatomomorphan, Nezara viridula, shows similar affinities for moulting hormones makisterone A and 20-hydroxyecdysone

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Journal Article
Insect Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 2011, 41 (2), pp. 77 - 89
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It has been suggested that Pentatomomorpha utilise the C28 ecdysteroid, makisterone A (MakA), as the major moulting hormone rather than the more common C27 hormone, 20-hydroxyecdsyone (20E). The present study is the first to examine this postulate at the level of the ecdysone receptor protein, a heterodimer of nuclear receptors EcR and USP. cDNAs encoding two alternatively spliced isoforms of EcR and a single USP were isolated from a high-quality cDNA library prepared from a representative pentatomomorphan, Nezara viridula (Nv). NvEcR and NvUSP were found to group phylogenetically with heteropteran and other insect EcRs and USP/RXRs, respectively. Sequence comparison and phylogenetic analysis of these proteins found them to be distinct from those belonging to other hemipteran ecdysone receptors characterised to date. Co-expression of the His6-tagged ligand binding regions (LBRs) of the two NvEcR variants with the FLAG-tagged LBR of NvUSP was achieved in insect cells employing appropriately constructed baculoviruses. The corresponding heterodimers, designated NvE10 and NvE11, were purified by affinity chromatography utilising the His6 tags on their NvEcR subunits. The heterodimers displayed nanomolar affinity for [3H]ponasterone A (Kd = 6.8-7.5 nM), characteristic of ecdysone receptors. MakA has a similar affinity to 20E for both NvE10 and NvE11, consistent with MakA being a major moulting hormone in N. viridula. © 2010.
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