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Size Difference among 16S rRNA Genes from Endosymbiontic Bacteria Found in Testes of Heliothis virescens, H. subflexa, (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) and Backcross Sterile Male Moths

Charles M. Krueger, Maurice E. Degrugillier and Sudhir K. Narang
The Florida Entomologist
Vol. 76, No. 2 (Jun., 1993), pp. 382-390
DOI: 10.2307/3495738
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3495738
Page Count: 9
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Size Difference among 16S rRNA Genes from Endosymbiontic Bacteria Found in Testes of Heliothis virescens, H. subflexa, (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) and Backcross Sterile Male Moths
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Abstract

Experimentally induced interspecific matings between Heliothis virescens male and H. subflexa female moths result in sterile male and fertile female offspring. The fertile female progeny can be backcrossed with H. virescens males to produce more sterile male and fertile female offspring. Successive generations of backcross female progeny continue to produce sterile male and fertile female offspring when backcrossed to H. virescens males. Backcross sterile males readily mate with wild-type H. virescens females under field conditions. Backcross male sterility is of interest for its potential to suppress populations of the pest moth Heliothis virescens. Rickettsia-like organisms have been observed in the testes of backcross sterile males and the two parental species of Heliothis. Prokaryotic endosymbionts have been associated with hybrid sterility in other insects. Therefore, we investigated Heliothis endosymbionts via an analysis of their PCR-amplified rRNA genes (rDNA). Prokaryotic-specific primers were used to amplify 16S rDNA from aseptically removed testes. PCR reactions without testes extract were negative. Endosymbionts from H. virescens and H. subflexa were genetically different. The size of PCR-amplified 16S rDNA indicates that endosymbionts in backcross sterile males originate from H. subflexa. Sterile males have essentially a H. virescens nuclear genome as a result of backcrossing. We propose that backcross male sterility results from an incompatibility between the maternally inherited endosymbiont type found in the cytoplasm and the predominantly paternal genetic material found in the nucleus. /// El acoplamiento interespecifico entre machos de Heliothis virescens y hembras de H. subflexa resultó en una progenie de machos esteriles y una progenie de hembras fertiles. La progenia fertíl femenina fue cruzada con machos de H. virescens para producir progenia esteril de machos y hembras fertiles. Las generaciones sucesivas de cruzamientos de retroceso de hembras continuaron produciendo mashos esteriles y hembras fertiles cuando se cruzaron con muchos de H. virescens. Bajo condiciones de laboratorio los machos esteriles de H. virescens copularon con hembras salvajes. El uso de machos esteriles es de gran interés para suprimir poblaciones de Heliothis virescens. Organismos de forma de ricketsias han sido observados en los testis de machos esteriles provenientes de retrocruzamientos y en las dos especies paternas de Heliothis. Los endosimbiontes procarioticos han sido asociados con la esterilidad de hibridos de otras especies. En consecuencia, investigamos los endosimbiontes de Heliothis por medio de un analisis de sus genes PCR amplificados rRNA (rDNA). Los procariotes especificos se usaron para amplificar 16S rDNA removidos ascepticamente de testis. Las reacciones de PRC sin el extracto de testes fueron negativas. Los endosimbiontes de H. virescens y de H. subflexa fueron geneticamente diferentes. El tamaño de los PCR aplificados 16S r DNA indican que los endosimbiontes en retrocruzamineto de machos se originan a partir de H. subflexa. Como resultado del retrocruzamiento, los machos esteriles tienen esencialmente un gene nuclear de H. virescens. Nosotros proponemos que la esterilidad de machos entre el endosimbionte heredado de la madre encontrado dentro del citoplasma y el material genetic paterno encontrado en el nucleo.

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