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Prophenoloxidase Response to White Spot Syndrome Virus Infection in the Red Swamp Crayfish (Procambarus clarkii)
Yanhe Li1,2,*, Lei She1, Minglin Wu1, Yongjie Wang1, Suofei Ji1, Keli Yang3 and Weimin Wang2
1Institute of Fisheries, Anhui Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Hefei, Anhui 230031, PR China; 2College of Fisheries, Key Laboratory of Agricultural Animal Genetics, Breeding and Reproduction of Ministry of Education, Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan, Hubei 430070, PR China; 3Hubei Key Laboratory of Animal Embryo and Molecular Breeding, Institute of Animal Husbandry and Veterinary, Hubei Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Wuhan, Hubei 430064, PR China; *Corresponding author: (YL)


Invertebrates rely on innate immunity to respond to the entry of foreign microorganisms. The prophenoloxidase (proPO) system plays crucial roles in crustacean innate immunity. White spot syndrome virus (WSSV) infection has recently been responsible for significant economic losses in many crayfish-producing farms in China. We therefore aimed to examine the response of the proPO system to WSSV infection. The virulence of the virus, expression of the proPO gene, and phenoloxidase (PO) activity in six tissues from the red swamp crayfish Procambarus clarkii were investigated using LD50 tests, real-time polymerase chain reaction and spectrophotometry, after infection with different numbers of WSSV virions. The LD50 of the WSSV strain was 2.08 ×107 virions/crayfish. proPO mRNA expression was increased in all studied tissues after infection with WSSV, except in the cuticle epidermis after infection with 2 × 107 virions. proPO mRNA transcription was significantly increased in hemocytes and hepatopancreas, suggesting that P. clarkii might depend mainly on innate immunity for defense against viral pathogens. PO activity differed among different tissues during WSSV infection, suggesting that the proPO system might be activated by different mechanisms in different tissues in response to different viral stresses.

Key words: Expression, Phenoloxidase, Procambarus clarkii, Prophenoloxidase, White spot syndrome virus


ISSN 0253-8318 (Print)
ISSN 2074-7764 (Online)