Special Issue "Insects, Nematodes and Their Symbiotic Bacteria"

A special issue of Insects (ISSN 2075-4450).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 March 2020.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Ulrich Theopold
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Molecular Biosciences, The Wenner-Gren Institute, Stockholm University, SE 106 91 Stockholm, Sweden
Interests: innate immunity; insect immunity; entomopathogenic nematodes; Galleria mellonella; Drosophila melanogaster; Photorhabdus; Xenorhabdus; comparative immunology
Dr. Pavel Hyrsl
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Institute of Experimental Biology, Department of Animal Physiology and Immunology, Faculty of Science, Masaryk University, UKB A36/123, Kamenice 753/5, Brno 62500, Czech Republic
Interests: innate immunity; insect immunity; entomopathogenic nematodes; Galleria mellonella; Drosophila melanogaster; Photorhabdus; Xenorhabdus; comparative immunology

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Insect pathogenic nematodes (entomopathogenic nematodes—EPNs) are lethal parasites to their hosts, and are frequently used as biological agents in the control of insect pests. Lethality may be as a result of the virulence factors provided by the nematodes themselves, or often by mutualistically-associated bacteria. Insects are only infected by the free-living nematode stage (infective juveniles), which enter via the tracheal, digestive epithelia, or by penetrating the cuticle. Once inside their hosts, EPNs complete their development and may reproduce asexually or sexually. Their associated bacteria are released and multiply inside the hemocoel, which then provides the nematodes with a source of nutrients. Insect cadavers release the next generation of infective juveniles with the ingested symbiotic bacteria established in their guts. Recent large-scale studies have provided detailed insights into the nematode–bacteria association, their combined and individual infection success, and the effect of EPN infection on secreted factors from the insect hosts. Some of these secreted factors have been shown to have a protective role against the pathogenic complex. Thus, we invite submissions that address all aspects of the tripartite nematode/bacteria/insect interaction. Papers may cover the mutualistic interaction between nematodes and their bacteria; behaviours or pathogenesis of the nematodes and the bacteria, together or alone; and changes in insect physiology and immunology in response to EPN (with or without their bacteria).

Prof. Dr. Ulrich Theopold
Dr. Pavel Hyrsl
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Insects is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1200 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Entomopathogenic nematodes
  • Heterorhabditis
  • Steinernema
  • Xenorhabdus
  • Photorhabdus
  • Insect immunity

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
Functional Characterization of Outer Membrane Proteins (OMPs) in Xenorhabdus nematophila and Photorhabdus luminescens through Insect Immune Defense Reactions
Insects 2019, 10(10), 352; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects10100352 - 17 Oct 2019
Abstract
Xenorhabdus nematophila and Photorhabdus luminescens are entomopathogenic bacterial symbionts that produce toxic proteins that can interfere with the immune system of insects. Herein, we show that outer membrane proteins (OMPs) could be involved as bacterial virulence factors. Purified totals OMPs of both bacterial [...] Read more.
Xenorhabdus nematophila and Photorhabdus luminescens are entomopathogenic bacterial symbionts that produce toxic proteins that can interfere with the immune system of insects. Herein, we show that outer membrane proteins (OMPs) could be involved as bacterial virulence factors. Purified totals OMPs of both bacterial species were injected into fifth instar larvae of Spodoptera exigua Hübner. Larvae were surveyed for cellular defenses fluctuations in total haemocyte counts (THC) and granulocyte percentage and for the humoral defenses protease, phospholipase A2 (PLA2), and phenoloxidase (PO) activities at specific time intervals. Changes in the expression of the three inducible antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), cecropin, attacin, and spodoptericin, were also measured. Larvae treated with OMPs of both bacterial species had more haemocytes than did the negative controls. OMPs of X. nematophila caused more haemocyte destruction than did the OMPs of P. luminescens. The OMPs of both bacterial species initially activated insect defensive enzymes post-injection, the degree of activation varying with enzyme type. The AMPs, attacin, cecropin, and spodoptericin were up-regulated by OMP injections compared with the normal larvae. The expression of these three AMPs was maximal at four hours post injection (hpi) with P. luminescens OMPs treatment. Expression of the three AMPs in X. nematophila treated insects was irregular and lower than in the P. luminescens OMPs treatment. These findings provide insights into the role of OMPs of entomopathogenic nematode bacterial symbionts in countering the physiological defenses of insects. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Insects, Nematodes and Their Symbiotic Bacteria)
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