Functional analysis of the promoter of an early zygotic gene KLC2 in Aedes aegypti
Tu, Zhijian J
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Abstract Background Aedes aegypti is an important mosquito vector that transmits arboviruses that cause devastating diseases including Zika, dengue fever, yellow fever and chikungunya. Improved understanding of gene regulation in the early development of Ae. aegypti will facilitate genetic studies and help the development of novel control strategies of this important disease vector. Results In this study, we demonstrated through transgenic assays that the promoter of an endogenous early zygotic gene KLC2 could drive gene expression in the syncytial blastoderm and early cellular blastoderm, which is a stage that the developing germline and the rest of embryo are accessible to genetic manipulation. An unexpected expression of the reporter gene in transgenic male testes was also observed. Further analysis confirmed the expression of the endogenous KLC2 in the testes, which was not detected in the previous RNA sequencing data. Conclusions Our finding provided a new promoter element that can be used in future genetic studies and applications in Ae. aegypti. Moreover, our transgenic reporter assays showed that cautions are needed when interpreting RNA sequencing data as transient or tissue-specific transcription may go undetected by RNAseq.