Peritrophic membrane role in enhancing digestive efficiency. Theoretical and experimental models.
ABSTRACT The peritrophic membrane (PM) is an anatomical structure surrounding the food bolus in most insects. Rejecting the idea that PM has evolved from coating mucus to play the same protective role as it, novel functions were proposed and experimentally tested. The theoretical principles underlying the digestive enzyme recycling mechanism were described and used to develop an algorithm to calculate enzyme distributions along the midgut and to infer secretory and absorptive sites. The activity of a Spodoptera frugiperda microvillar aminopeptidase decreases by 50% if placed in the presence of midgut contents. S. frugiperda trypsin preparations placed into dialysis bags in stirred and unstirred media have activities of 210 and 160%, respectively, over the activities of samples in a test tube. The ectoperitrophic fluid (EF) present in the midgut caeca of Rhynchosciara americana may be collected. If the enzymes restricted to this fluid are assayed in the presence of PM contents (PMC) their activities decrease by at least 58%. The lack of PM caused by calcofluor feeding impairs growth due to an increase in the metabolic cost associated with the conversion of food into body mass. This probably results from an increase in digestive enzyme excretion and useless homeostatic attempt to reestablish destroyed midgut gradients. The experimental models support the view that PM enhances digestive efficiency by: (a) prevention of non-specific binding of undigested material onto cell surface; (b) prevention of excretion by allowing enzyme recycling powered by an ectoperitrophic counterflux of fluid; (c) removal from inside PM of the oligomeric molecules that may inhibit the enzymes involved in initial digestion; (d) restriction of oligomer hydrolases to ectoperitrophic space (ECS) to avoid probable partial inhibition by non-dispersed undigested food. Finally, PM functions are discussed regarding insects feeding on any diet.
- SourceAvailable from: Cristiano Lazoski[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: The bloodsucking hemipteran Rhodnius prolixus is a vector of Chagas' disease, which affects 7-8 million people today in Latin America. In contrast to other hematophagous insects, the triatomine gut is compartmentalized into three segments that perform different functions during blood digestion. Here we report analysis of transcriptomes for each of the segments using pyrosequencing technology. Comparison of transcript frequency in digestive libraries with a whole-body library was used to evaluate expression levels. All classes of digestive enzymes were highly expressed, with a predominance of cysteine and aspartic proteinases, the latter showing a significant expansion through gene duplication. Although no protein digestion is known to occur in the anterior midgut (AM), protease transcripts were found, suggesting secretion as pro-enzymes, being possibly activated in the posterior midgut (PM). As expected, genes related to cytoskeleton, protein synthesis apparatus, protein traffic, and secretion were abundantly transcribed. Despite the absence of a chitinous peritrophic membrane in hemipterans - which have instead a lipidic perimicrovillar membrane lining over midgut epithelia - several gut-specific peritrophin transcripts were found, suggesting that these proteins perform functions other than being a structural component of the peritrophic membrane. Among immunity-related transcripts, while lysozymes and lectins were the most highly expressed, several genes belonging to the Toll pathway - found at low levels in the gut of most insects - were identified, contrasting with a low abundance of transcripts from IMD and STAT pathways. Analysis of transcripts related to lipid metabolism indicates that lipids play multiple roles, being a major energy source, a substrate for perimicrovillar membrane formation, and a source for hydrocarbons possibly to produce the wax layer of the hindgut. Transcripts related to amino acid metabolism showed an unanticipated priority for degradation of tyrosine, phenylalanine, and tryptophan. Analysis of transcripts related to signaling pathways suggested a role for MAP kinases, GTPases, and LKBP1/AMP kinases related to control of cell shape and polarity, possibly in connection with regulation of cell survival, response of pathogens and nutrients. Together, our findings present a new view of the triatomine digestive apparatus and will help us understand trypanosome interaction and allow insights into hemipteran metabolic adaptations to a blood-based diet.PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases 01/2014; 8(1):e2594. · 4.57 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The effect of dietary protein concentration on the spatial distribution of digestive proteinases in the shrimp Litopenaeus vannamei indicates the existence of endo-ectoperitrophic enzyme circulation in this species. Samples recovered from the midgut gland tissues, stomach contents, three different portions of the midgut and feces were used for quantitative and qualitative analysis of the composition and distribution of the digestive proteinases. Animals were divided into three different groups: (1) animals (controls) fed a commercial 35% protein diet, (2) animals fed a commercial diet supplemented with ovalbumin to a final protein concentration of 60%; (3) animals fed a 80% protein diet. Quantitative determinations using different substrates and zymograms showed that increasing protein concentration in the diet alters the distribution of proteinases along the digestive tract. Composition of proteinases in the midgut gland, stomach contents, midgut sections and feces were similar, but not identical. Chymotrypsin and trypsin paralogues were identified in all enzyme sources in a concentration gradient along the midgut in the control shrimp, the expected distribution supporting the existence of a recycling mechanism. The occurrence of a peritrophic membrane in other Decapoda suggests that endo-ectoperitrophic circulation of digestive enzymes and nutrients may also occur in other crustaceans and also extends beyond the Insecta.Comparative biochemistry and physiology. Part B, Biochemistry & molecular biology 05/2014; · 1.61 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Tsetse flies serve as biological vectors for several species of African trypanosomes. In order to survive, proliferate and establish a midgut infection, trypanosomes must cross the tsetse fly peritrophic matrix (PM), which is an acellular gut lining surrounding the blood meal. Crossing of this multi-layered structure occurs at least twice during parasite migration and development, but the mechanism of how trypanosomes do so is not understood. In order to better comprehend the molecular events surrounding trypanosome penetration of the tsetse PM, a mass spectrometry-based approach was applied to investigate the PM protein composition using Glossina morsitans morsitans as a model organism. PMs from male teneral (young, unfed) flies were dissected, solubilised in urea/SDS buffer and the proteins precipitated with cold acetone/TCA. The PM proteins were either subjected to an in-solution tryptic digestion or fractionated on 1D SDS-PAGE, and the resulting bands digested using trypsin. The tryptic fragments from both preparations were purified and analysed by LC-MS/MS. Overall, nearly 300 proteins were identified from both analyses, several of those containing signature Chitin Binding Domains (CBD), including novel peritrophins and peritrophin-like glycoproteins, which are essential in maintaining PM architecture and may act as trypanosome adhesins. Furthermore, 27 proteins from the tsetse secondary endosymbiont, Sodalis glossinidius, were also identified, suggesting this bacterium is probably in close association with the tsetse PM. To our knowledge this is the first report on the protein composition of teneral G. m. morsitans, an important vector of African trypanosomes. Further functional analyses of these proteins will lead to a better understanding of the tsetse physiology and may help identify potential molecular targets to block trypanosome development within the tsetse.PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases 04/2014; 8(4):e2691. · 4.57 Impact Factor