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Heat shock response in ovarian nurse cells ofAnopheles stephensi


Transcriptional and translational changes following temperature shock at 37, 39 or 41°C to ovarian cells ofAnopheles stephensi were studied. Temperature shock at 39°C induced 6 puffs on polytene chromosomes in the nurse cells as revealed by [3H] uridine incorporation studies. Only the 2R-19B puff was induced at 37°C and was found to be a major temperature shock locus remaining most active at all the 3 temperatures tested. Other temperature shock loci were activated only at 39°C. There was progressive inhibi tion of general chromosomal transcription with the rise of temperature. Transcription was drastically inhibited at 41°C but all the temperature shock loci still remained relatively active. Examination of [35S]methionine labelled newly synthesized ovarian proteins using sodium dodecyl sulphate-polyacrylamide slab gels revealed that all the heat shock polypeptides except the HSP 70 were synthesized in ovarian cells even at control temperature (29°C). Temperature shock induced the synthesis of HSP 70 and elevated the levels of other heat shock polypeptides (82, 30, 29, 23 and 17 KD). Present results suggest that the threshold level for induction of a complete heat shock response in mosquitos is higher (39°C) than the other dipteran insects studied and that a 41°C treatment is not lethal as in the case ofDrosophila, Chironomus etc. These features reflect the adaptations of mosquitos to tropical climate and their dietary habit of warm blood meal.

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Sodium dodecyl sulphate


temperature shock


heat shock polypeptides


Coomassic brilliant blue


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Nath, B.B., Lakhotia, S.C. Heat shock response in ovarian nurse cells ofAnopheles stephensi . J Biosci 14, 143–152 (1989).

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  • Temperature shock
  • mosquito
  • heat shock polypeptides
  • polytene chromosomes
  • puffs
  • thermotolerance