Molecular cloning and characterization of Defensin beta 103a, Hepcidin and Cathelicidin Antimicrobial peptides in Eonycteris speleae and Pteropus alecto
Tan, Clea Paula Yueh Tsui
Date of Issue2016
School of Biological Sciences
In this study, characterization of Defensin beta 103a, hepcidin and cathelicidin is reported for the first time in bats. AMPs are one of the most ancient innate immune defense weapons and are widely distributed in vertebrate taxa. Phylogenetic analysis demonstrated that non-synonymous substitutions occurred in the bat hepcidin gene after divergence in the bat families- Vespertilionidae, Pteropodidae and Phyllostomidae forming species-specific lineages within each family. The adaptation of chiropterans to different environments and ecological niches with diverse pathogen profiles seems to have shaped the evolution of Defensin beta 103a and hepcidin genes in a suborder and family specific manner respectively. qPCR was carried out on a panel of bat tissues and the panel of expression of β defensin 103a and hepcidin is very different between the bat and the human. Notably, an increased expression of defensin beta 103a and hepcidin is reported in many bat tissues as compared to humans. Leading to the hypothesis that bats are more resistant to infection due to over expression of these AMP. In conclusion, these observed evolutionary patterns and unique tissue gene expression profiles (defensin beta 103 and hepcidin) foretell potential functional difference between human and bat AMPs.
Final Year Project (FYP)