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A systemic approach to study permissivity on the Anticarsia gemmatalis multiple nucleopolyhedrovirus (AgMNPV)

Grant number: 14/17766-9
Support type:Regular Research Grants
Duration: February 01, 2015 - April 30, 2017
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Microbiology
Principal Investigator:Paolo Marinho de Andrade Zanotto
Grantee:Paolo Marinho de Andrade Zanotto
Home Institution: Instituto de Ciências Biomédicas (ICB). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo, SP, Brazil


Baculoviridae are arthropod-specific viruses that commonly infect insect orders. During the viral life cycle, two distinct phenotypes are produced: the budded virus (BV) and, the occlusion-derived virus (ODV) for intra and across host spread, respectively. Since the 80's several countries have been using the Anticarsia gemmatalis multiple nucleopolyhedrovirus (AgMNPV) as a biological control agent against the velvet bean caterpillar (A. gemmatalis). In Brazil since the 1980's have been using AgMNPV in the world largest biological control program in soybean plantations. Our previous work revealed that the AgMNPV-2D genome carries at least 152 potential genes and that 149 viral genes are expressed during the infection. Moreover we also showed that a total of 44 proteins are associated to the ODV and 33 to the BV of the AgMNPV-2D. Furthermore, 11 cellular proteins were also identified, which are possibly assorted during viral morphogenesis and carried with the virion. However, when comparing the BV phenotype produced in semi permissive cells, we identified some differences. For example, the late and low level of expression of some genes, and the absence of proteins: AG52, IAP - 2, AG73, P33, 38K, P40, P48 and AG113 in its structure. Therefore, this project aims to understand the mechanisms that influence cell permissiveness to AgMNPV in the cell lineage UFL-AG-286 and SF-9. In addition it aims to understand the differences and dynamics of formation of new BV phenotype in permissive and semi-permissive cell lineage. For this, the specific goals are: (i) identify and quantify all viral and host mRNAs expressed in the early infection in different cell lines of Lepidoptera (ii) test the activity of the anti-apoptotic protein originating from the caterpillar Lonomia oblique to assess changes in permissivity (iii) map the ORFs in silico and compare the differences, (iv) quantify BV proteins based on mass spectrometry using label free methods (v) validate the data and propose pathways and signaling / interaction networks, (vi) to estimate genetic diversity measures (¸) from 17 South-American natural populations of AgMNPV, (vii) to infer evolutionary process based on neutrality tests on the 17 populations, (viii) to measure population differentiation and (iv) to correlate genetic population statistics to measures from genic networks. Permissivity is the main relationship between host-parasite relationships as specificity. Understanding how this process works can help searching for new baculovirus able to be used as biological control, as well as enabling possible future applications such as antigen presentation, alteration of cell tropism, gene delivery and expansion of host range. (AU)

Articles published in Agência FAPESP about the research grant
Research paves the way for the development of vaccines for emerging viruses 
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