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Impact of transgenic oilseed rape expressing oryzacystatin-1 (OC-1) and of insecticidal proteins on longevity and digestive enzymes of the solitary bee Osmia bicornis

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Natalie Ferry, Professor Angharad MR GatehouseORCiD


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The risk that insect-resistant transgenic plants may pose for solitary bees was assessed by determining longevity of adult Osmia bicornis (O. rufa) chronically exposed to transgenic oilseed rape expressing oryzacystatin-1 (OC-1) or to the purified insecticidal proteins recombinant rOC-1, Kunitz soybean trypsin inhibitor (SBTI), Galanthus nivalis agglutinin (GNA), or Bacillus thuringiensis toxin Cry1Ab dissolved in sugar solution (at 0.01 and 0.1%, w:v, Cry1Ab only at 0.01%). Compared to control bees, longevity was significantly reduced by SBTI and GNA at both concentrations and by rOC-1 at 0.1%, but not by Cry1Ab or rOC-1 at 0.01%. Longevity on the OC-1 oilseed rape was not significantly different from the control plants. The effects of SBTI and rOC-1 on longevity were investigated through characterization of the digestive proteinases of O. bicornis and analysis of the response in proteinase profiles to ingestion of these proteinase inhibitors. A relatively complex profile of at least four types of soluble proteolytic enzymes was identified. Serine proteinases were found to be predominant, with metallo and especially cysteine proteinases making a smaller albeit significant contribution. The compensatory response to in vivo enzyme inhibition was similar for SBTI and rOC-1 although less pronounced for rOC-1. It consisted of a non-specific overproduction of native proteinases, both sensitive and insensitive, and the induction of a novel aspartic proteinase. (C) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Konrad R, Connor M, Ferry N, Gatehouse AMR, Babendreier D

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of Insect Physiology

Year: 2009

Volume: 55

Issue: 4

Pages: 305-313

ISSN (print): 0022-1910

ISSN (electronic): 1879-1611

Publisher: Pergamon


DOI: 10.1016/j.jinsphys.2008.12.007


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