Nicotiana benthamiana as Suitable System for Expression of Cotton Boll Weevil á-amylase Inhibitor
Cotton boll weevil is one of the most destructive pests of cotton in the
Americas. Institut de L'Environnement et de Recherches Agricoles (INERA)
scientist, Severine Lacombe, and colleagues developed an á-amylase inhibitor
(á-AIC3) variant using molecular evolution strategy to impede the action of
cotton boll weevil (Anthonomus grandis). The findings are published in BMC
The researchers produced á-AIC3 using a temporary expression system in
Nicotiana benthamiana, a relative of tobacco. Structural and functional
characterization of á-AIC3 showed that it has the ability to inhibit up to
100% of A. grandis á-amylase, while it had no effect on the á-amylase of two
other non-pathogenic insects.
The results imply that N. bethamiana is a suitable system for high-level
production of biologically active á-AIC3. The data also suggest that á-AIC3
could be a potential candidate for the production of GM crops with
resistance to cotton boll weevil.