Comparative Analysis of Salivary Gland Transcriptomes of Phlebotomus orientalis Sand Flies from Endemic and Non-endemic Foci of Visceral Leishmaniasis.

PLoS neglected tropical diseases

PubMedID: 24587463

Vlkova M, Sima M, Rohousova I, Kostalova T, Sumova P, Volfova V, Jaske EL, Barbian KD, Gebre-Michael T, Hailu A, Warburg A, Ribeiro JM, Valenzuela JG, Jochim RC, Volf P. Comparative Analysis of Salivary Gland Transcriptomes of Phlebotomus orientalis Sand Flies from Endemic and Non-endemic Foci of Visceral Leishmaniasis. PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 2014;8(2):e2709.
BACKGROUND
In East Africa, Phlebotomus orientalis serves as the main vector of Leishmania donovani, the causative agent of visceral leishmaniasis (VL). Phlebotomus orientalis is present at two distant localities in Ethiopia; Addis Zemen where VL is endemic and Melka Werer where transmission of VL does not occur. To find out whether the difference in epidemiology of VL is due to distant compositions of P. orientalis saliva we established colonies from Addis Zemen and Melka Werer, analyzed and compared the transcriptomes, proteomes and enzymatic activity of the salivary glands.

METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS
Two cDNA libraries were constructed from the female salivary glands of P. orientalis from Addis Zemen and Melka Werer. Clones of each P. orientalis library were randomly selected, sequenced and analyzed. In P. orientalis transcriptomes, we identified members of 13 main protein families. Phylogenetic analysis and multiple sequence alignments were performed to evaluate differences between the P. orientalis colonies and to show the relationship with other sand fly species from the subgenus Larroussius. To further compare both colonies, we investigated the humoral antigenicity and cross-reactivity of the salivary proteins and the activity of salivary apyrase and hyaluronidase.

CONCLUSIONS
This is the first report of the salivary components of P. orientalis, an important vector sand fly. Our study expanded the knowledge of salivary gland compounds of sand fly species in the subgenus Larroussius. Based on the phylogenetic analysis, we showed that P. orientalis is closely related to Phlebotomus tobbi and Phlebotomus perniciosus, whereas Phlebotomus ariasi is evolutionarily more distinct species. We also demonstrated that there is no significant difference between the transcriptomes, proteomes or enzymatic properties of the salivary components of Addis Zemen (endemic area) and Melka Werer (non-endemic area) P. orientalis colonies. Thus, the different epidemiology of VL in these Ethiopian foci cannot be attributed to the salivary gland composition.