The synthesis of hemolymph proteins by the larval epidermis of an insect Calpodes ethlius (Lepidoptera: Hesperiidae)

Subba Reddy Palli, Michael Locke

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Sheets of the dorsal abdominal integument from fifth instar larvae of Calpodes ethlius (Lepidoptera: Hesperiidae) were incubated in artificial hemolymph in the presence of [35S]methionine to investigate protein synthesis and vectorial secretion. The epidermis synthesizes and secretes at least 13 polypeptides basally and 15 apically. Two dimensional analysis of proteins labeled in vitro and in vivo showed that (a) most of the polypeptides secreted on apical and basal surfaces are different, (b) in vitro apical secretions are the same as in vivo cuticular proteins, (c) at least four of the basal secretions can be demonstrated in hemolymph labeled in vivo. Antibodies made against whole hemolymph recognized five basally secreted polypeptides and one apically secreted polypeptide both on fluorograms of immunoprecipitates and immunoblots. Arylphorin is secreted from both surfaces. Arylphorin synthesized in vitro has been identified through its precipitation by antibodies to hemolymph arylphorin in epidermis, cuticle and medium. We conclude that insect epidermis has bi-directional secretion. Cuticular proteins are carried to the apical face. A different set of proteins are carried basally to the hemolymph.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)711-722
Number of pages12
JournalInsect Biochemistry
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1987


  • arylphorin
  • cuticle
  • Epidermis
  • hemolymph
  • vectorial protein secretion


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