Wolbachia Enhance Drosophila Stem Cell Proliferation and Target the Germline Stem Cell Niche

Department of Biology, Boston University, Boston, MA 02215, USA.
Science (Impact Factor: 33.61). 11/2011; 334(6058):990-2. DOI: 10.1126/science.1209609
Source: PubMed


Wolbachia are widespread maternally transmitted intracellular bacteria that infect most insect species and are able to alter the reproduction of innumerous hosts. The cellular bases of these alterations remain largely unknown. Here, we report that Drosophila mauritiana infected with a native Wolbachia wMau strain produces about four times more eggs than the noninfected counterpart. Wolbachia infection leads to an increase in the mitotic activity of germline stem cells (GSCs), as well as a decrease in programmed cell death in the germarium. Our results suggest that up-regulation of GSC division is mediated by a tropism of Wolbachia for the GSC niche, the cellular microenvironment that supports GSCs.

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Available from: Horacio Frydman, Oct 23, 2014
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    • "In addition, manipulation of reproduction by Wolbachia includes feminizing genetic males, causing parthenogenesis, and killing male progenies (Stouthamer et al. 1999; Werren et al. 2008). Recent studies found that Wolbachia benefits insect hosts by providing essential nutrition (Hosokawa et al. 2010), enhancing host stem cell's proliferation (Fast et al. 2011), and protecting insect from pathogenic RNA viruses (Hedges et al. 2008). The genus Wolbachia is highly divergent and has so far been divided into 13 supergroups (A-N, except for G which is a combination of A and B) (Lo et al. 2002, 2007; Baldo and Werren 2007; Haegeman et al. 2009; Ros et al. 2009; Augustinos et al. 2011). "
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    • "Wolbachia affect host gene expression 5 D . mauritiana and the mitotic activity of germline stem cells , as well as decreases programmed cell death in the germarium ( Fast et al . , 2011 ) . The strength of CI induced by Wolbachia infection dramatically decreased with both male age ( Reynolds & Hoffmann , 2002 ) and larval stage development ( Yamada et al . , 2007 ) . As a result , we hypothesized that Wolbachia would strongly affect female fecundity and early spermatogenesis in T . urticae ."
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    ABSTRACT: Wolbachia is an intracellular bacterium that has aroused intense interest because of its ability to alter the biology of its host in diverse ways. In the two-spotted spider mite, Tetranychus urticae, Wolbachia can induce complex cytoplasmic incompatibility (CI) phenotypes and fitness changes, although little is known about the mechanisms. In the present study, we selected a strain of T. urticae, in which Wolbachia infection was associated with strong CI and enhanced female fecundity, to investigate changes in the transcriptome of T. urticae in Wolbachia-infected vs. uninfected lines. The responses were found to be sex-specific, with the transcription of 251 genes being affected in females and 171 genes being affected in males. Some of the more profoundly affected genes in both sexes were lipocalin genes and genes involved in oxidation reduction, digestion and detoxification. Several of the differentially expressed genes have potential roles in reproduction. Interestingly, unlike certain Wolbachia transinfections in novel hosts, the Wolbachia–host association in the present study showed no clear evidence of host immune priming by Wolbachia, although a few potential immune genes were affected.
    Insect Molecular Biology 10/2014; 24(1). DOI:10.1111/imb.12128 · 2.59 Impact Factor
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    • "and removal is lethal (Miller et al. 2010). In D. mauritiana, infected females produce four times as many eggs as uninfected females (Fast et al. 2011). "
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    ABSTRACT: Drosophila suzukii recently invaded North America and Europe. Populations in Hawaii, California, New York and Nova Scotia are polymorphic for Wolbachia, typically with <20% infection frequency. The Wolbachia in D. suzukii, denoted wSuz, is closely related to wRi, the variant prevalent in continental populations of D. simulans. wSuz is also nearly identical to Wolbachia found in D. subpulchrella, plausibly D. suzukii's sister species. This suggests vertical Wolbachia transmission through cladogenesis (“cladogenic transmission”). The widespread occurrence of 7-20% infection frequencies indicates a stable polymorphism. wSuz is imperfectly maternally transmitted, with wild infected females producing on average 5-10% uninfected progeny. As expected from its low frequency, wSuz produces no cytoplasmic incompatibility (CI), i.e., no elevated embryo mortality when infected males mate with uninfected females, and no appreciable sex-ratio distortion. The persistence of wSuz despite imperfect maternal transmission suggests positive fitness effects. Assuming a balance between selection and imperfect transmission, we expect a fitness advantage on the order of 20%. Unexpectedly, Wolbachia-infected females produce fewer progeny than do uninfected females. We do not yet understand the maintenance of wSuz in D. suzukii. The absence of detectable CI in D. suzukii and D. subpulchrella makes it unlikely that CI-based mechanisms could be used to control this species without transinfection using novel Wolbachia. Contrary to their reputation as horizontally transmitted reproductive parasites, many Wolbachia infections are acquired through introgression or cladogenesis and many cause no appreciable reproductive manipulation. Such infections, likely to be mutualistic, may be central to understanding the pervasiveness of Wolbachia among arthropods.This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    Molecular Ecology 08/2014; 23(19). DOI:10.1111/mec.12901 · 6.49 Impact Factor
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