BACKGROUND: Temperature is known to be the main factor affecting development, growth and reproduction of organisms and also an physical factor directly related to insect survival. Insects as ectothermal species should be responsive to climate changes for their survival and develop various survival strategies under the unfavorable temperature such as low temperature. The purpose of this study is to identify genes contributing to adaptation of low temperature.
METHODS AND RESULTS: To identify genes contributing to adaptation of low temperature, the transcriptomic data were obtained from fat body in Plutella xyostella larvae via next generation sequencing. We identified structural proteins, heat shock proteins, antioxidant enzymes detoxification proteins, and cryoprotectant mobilization and biosynthesis-related proteins. Genes encoding chitinase, cuticular protein, Hsp23, chytochrome protein, Glutathione S transferase, and phospholipase 2 were up-regulated under low temperature. Proteins related to energy metabolism such as UDP-glycosyltransferase, trehalase and trehalose transporter were down-regulated.
CONCLUSION: When insect pests were exposed to low temperature, changes in gene expression of fat body can provide some hints for understanding temperature adaptation strategies.