Scientific reports

Fatty acid synthase 2 contributes to diapause preparation in a beetle by regulating lipid accumulation and stress tolerance genes expression.

PMID 28071706


Diapause, also known as dormancy, is a state of arrested development that allows insects to survive unfavorable environmental conditions. Diapause-destined insects store large amounts of fat when preparing for diapause. However, the extent to which these accumulated fat reserves influence diapause remains unclear. To address this question, we investigated the function of fatty acid synthase (FAS), which plays a central role in lipid synthesis, in stress tolerance, the duration of diapause preparation, and whether insects enter diapause or not. In diapause-destined adult female cabbage beetles, Colaphellus bowringi, FAS2 was more highly expressed than FAS1 at the peak stage of diapause preparation. FAS2 knockdown suppressed lipid accumulation and subsequently affected stress tolerance genes expression and water content. However, silencing FAS2 had no significant effects on the duration of diapause preparation or the incidence of diapause. FAS2 transcription was suppressed by juvenile hormone (JH) and the JH receptor methoprene-tolerant (Met). These results suggest that the absence of JH-Met induces FAS2 expression, thereby promoting lipid storage in diapause-destined female beetles. These results demonstrate that fat reserves regulate stress tolerance genes expression and water content, but have no significant effect on the duration of diapause preparation or the incidence of diapause.

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Methoprene, PESTANAL®, analytical standard