Image_6_A Zinc Metalloprotease nas-33 Is Required for Molting and Survival in Parasitic Nematode Haemonchus contortus.TIF (233.32 kB)
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Image_6_A Zinc Metalloprotease nas-33 Is Required for Molting and Survival in Parasitic Nematode Haemonchus contortus.TIF

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posted on 13.07.2021, 04:20 by Yan Huang, Jie Wu, Xueqiu Chen, Danni Tong, Jingru Zhou, Fei Wu, Hui Zhang, Yi Yang, Guangxu Ma, Aifang Du

Molting is of great importance for the survival and development of nematodes. Nematode astacins (NAS), a large family of zinc metalloproteases, have been proposed as novel anthelmintic targets due to their multiple roles in biological processes of parasitic nematodes. In this study, we report a well conserved nas-33 gene in nematodes of clade V and elucidate how this gene is involved in the molting process of the free-living nematode Caenorhabditis elegans and the parasitic nematode Haemonchus contortus. A predominant transcription of nas-33 is detected in the larval stages of these worms, particularly in the molting process. Knockdown of this gene results in marked molecular changes of genes involved in cuticle synthesis and ecdysis, compromised shedding of the old cuticle, and reduced worm viability in H. contortus. The crucial role of nas-33 in molting is closely associated with a G protein beta subunit (GPB-1). Suppression of both nas-33 and gpb-1 blocks shedding of the old cuticle, compromises the connection between the cuticle and hypodermis, and leads to an increased number of sick and dead worms, indicating essentiality of this module in nematode development and survival. These findings reveal the functional role of nas-33 in nematode molting process and identify astacins as novel anthelmintic targets for parasitic nematodes of socioeconomic significance.

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