Metabolic changes and potential biomarkers in "Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum"-infected potato psyllids: implications for psyllid-pathogen interactions

Li et al. (2023). Frontiers in Plant Science 14
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Plant Science
Psyllid yellows, vein-greening (VG), and zebra chip (ZC) diseases, which are primarily transmitted by potato psyllid (PoP) carrying Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum (CLso), have caused significant losses in solanaceous crop production worldwide. Pathogens interact with their vectors at the organic and cellular levels, while the potential changes that may occur at the biochemical level are less well reported. In this study, the impact of CLso on the metabolism of PoP and the identification of biomarkers from infected psyllids were examined. Using ultra-performance liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (UPLC-MS/MS) analysis, metabolomic changes in CLso-infected psyllids were compared to uninfected ones. A total of 34 metabolites were identified as potential biomarkers of CLso infection, which were primarily related to amino acid, carbohydrate, and lipid metabolism. The significant increase in glycerophospholipids is thought to be associated with CLso evading the insect vector’s immune defense. Matrix-assisted Laser Desorption Ionization Mass Spectrometry Imaging (MALDI-MSI) was used to map the spatial distribution of these biomarkers, revealing that 15-keto-Prostaglandin E2 and alpha-D-Glucose were highly expressed in the abdomen of uninfected psyllids but down-regulated in infected psyllids. It is speculated that this down-regulation may be due to CLso evading surveillance by immune suppression in the PoP midgut. Overall, valuable biochemical information was provided, a theoretical basis for a better understanding of psyllid-pathogen interactions was offered, and the findings may aid in breaking the transmission cycle of these diseases.
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