Affordable Access

Access to the full text

A Novel Splice Variant of the Masculinizing Gene Masc with piRNA-Cleavage-Site Defect Functions in Female External Genital Development in the Silkworm, Bombyx mori

Authors
  • Zhao, Qin1
  • Li, Juan1, 2
  • Wen, Mao-Yu1
  • Wang, He1
  • Wang, Yao1
  • Wang, Kai-Xuan1
  • Wan, Qiu-Xing1
  • Zha, Xing-Fu1, 3, 4
  • 1 State Key Laboratory of Silkworm Genome Biology, Biological Science Research Center, Southwest University, Chongqing 400715, China
  • 2 School of Life Sciences, Southwest University, Chongqing 400715, China
  • 3 Chongqing Key Laboratory of Sericultural Science, Southwest University, Chongqing 400715, China
  • 4 Chongqing Engineering and Technology Research Center for Novel Silk Materials, Southwest University, Chongqing 400715, China
Type
Published Article
Journal
Biomolecules
Publisher
MDPI AG
Publication Date
Jul 30, 2019
Volume
9
Issue
8
Identifiers
DOI: 10.3390/biom9080318
PMID: 31366115
PMCID: PMC6723575
Source
PubMed Central
Keywords
License
Green

Abstract

In the silkworm, the sex-determination primary signal Fem controls sex differentiation by specific binding of Fem -derived piRNA to the cleavage site in Masc mRNA, thus inhibiting Masc protein production in the female. In this study, we identified a novel splicing isoform of Masc , named Masc-S , which lacks the intact sequence of the cleavage site, encoding a C-terminal truncated protein. Results of RT-PCR showed that Masc-S was expressed in both sexes. Over-expression of Masc-S and Masc in female-specific cell lines showed that Masc-S could be translated against the Fem -piRNA cut. By RNA-protein pull-down, LC/MS/MS, and EMSA, we identified a protein BmEXU that specifically binds to an exclusive RNA sequence in Masc compared to Masc-S . Knockdown of Masc-S resulted in abnormal morphology in female external genital and increased expression of the Hox gene Abd-B , which similarly occurred by Bmexu RNAi. These results suggest that the splice variant Masc-S against Fem -piRNA plays an important role in female external genital development, of which function is opposite to that of full-length Masc . Our study provides new insights into the regulatory mechanism of sex determination in the silkworm.

Report this publication

Statistics

Seen <100 times