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论文信息：Transcriptome profiling revealed potentially important roles of defensive gene expression in the divergence of insect biotypes: a case study with the cereal aphid Sitobion avenae. Wang D., Liu D.-G*, Shi X.-Q., Yang Y.-J., Zhang N., Shang Z.-M. . BMC Genomics, 2020.21: 546
论文摘要：Background: Many insects can develop differential biotypes on variable host plants, but the underlying molecular factors and mechanisms are not well understood. To address this issue, transcriptome profiling analyses were conducted for two biotypes of the cereal aphid, Sitobion avenae (Fabricius), on both original and alternative plants.
Results: Comparisons between both biotypes generated 4174 differentially expressed unigenes (DEGs). In their response to host plant shift, 39 DEGs were shared by both biotypes, whereas 126 and 861 DEGs occurred only in biotypes 1 and 3, respectively. MMC (modulated modularity clustering) analyses showed that specific DEGs of biotypes 1 and 3 clustered into five and nine transcriptional modules, respectively. Among these DEGs, defense-related genes underwent intensive expression restructuring in both biotypes. However, biotype 3 was found to have relatively lower gene transcriptional plasticity than biotype 1. Gene enrichment analyses of the abovementioned modules showed functional divergence in defensive DEGs for the two biotypes in response to host transfer. The expression plasticity for some defense related genes was showed to be directly related to fecundity of S. avenae biotypes on both original and alternative plants, suggesting that expression plasticity of key defensive genes could have significant impacts on the adaptive potential and differentiation of S. avenae biotypes on different plants.
Conclusions: The divergence patterns of transcriptional plasticity in defense related genes may play important roles in the phenotypic evolution and differentiation of S. avenae biotypes. Our results can provide insights into the role of gene expression plasticity in the divergence of insect biotypes and adaptive evolution of insect populations.