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Original Research ARTICLE Provisionally accepted The full-text will be published soon. Notify me

Front. Physiol. | doi: 10.3389/fphys.2019.01052

Sensilla-specific expression of odorant receptors in the desert locust Schistocerca gregaria

  • 1Faculty of Natural Sciences, University of Hohenheim, Germany
  • 2Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology, Germany

The desert locust Schistocerca gregaria recognizes multiple chemical cues, which are received by olfactory sensory neurons housed in morphologically identifiable sensilla. The different sensillum types contain olfactory sensory neurons with different physiological specificities, i.e. they respond to different categories of chemical signals. The molecular basis for the sensilla-specific responsiveness of these cells is unknown, but probably based on the endogenous receptor repertoire. To explore this issue, attempts were made to elucidate whether distinct odorant receptors (ORs) may be expressed in a sensilla-specific manner. Analyzing more than 80 OR types concerning for a sensilla-specific expression revealed that the vast majority was found to be expressed in sensilla basiconica; whereas only three OR types were expressed in sensilla trichodea. Within a sensillum unit, even in the multicellular assembly of sensilla basiconica, many of the OR types were expressed in only a single cell, however, a few OR types were found to be expressed in a consortium of cells typically arranged in a cluster of 2-4 cells. The notion that the OR-specific cell clusters are successively formed in the course of development was confirmed by comparing the expression patterns in different nymph stages. The results of this study uncover some novel and unique features of locust olfactory system, which will contribute to unravel the complexity of locust olfaction.

Keywords: Olfaction, insect, desert locust, antenna, odorant receptor, Sensilla

Received: 23 May 2019; Accepted: 02 Aug 2019.

Edited by:

Sylvia Anton, Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique (INRA), France

Reviewed by:

Shannon B. Olsson, National Centre for Biological Sciences, India
Nicolas Montagné, Sorbonne Universités, France  

Copyright: © 2019 Jiang, Breer and Pregitzer. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Dr. Pablo Pregitzer, Faculty of Natural Sciences, University of Hohenheim, Stuttgart, 70593, Baden-Württemberg, Germany,