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Immune function of an angiotensin-converting enzyme against Rice stripe virus infection in a vector insect.

Virology (2019-06-28)
Xue Wang, Wei Wang, Wenzhong Zhang, Jing Li, Feng Cui, Luqin Qiao
ABSTRACT

Angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) plays diverse roles in the animal kingdom. However, whether ACE plays an immune function against viral infection in vector insects is unclear. In this study, an ACE gene (LsACE) from the small brown planthopper was found to respond to Rice stripe virus (RSV) infection. The enzymatic activities of LsACE were characterized at different pH and temperature. Twenty planthopper proteins were found to interact with LsACE. RSV infection significantly upregulated LsACE expression in the testicle and fat body. When the expression of LsACE in viruliferous planthoppers was inhibited, the RNA level of the RSV SP gene was upregulated 2-fold in planthoppers, and all RSV genes showed higher RNA levels in the rice plants consumed by these planthoppers, leading to a higher viral infection rate and disease rating index. These results indicate that LsACE plays a role in the immune response against RSV transmission by planthoppers.