Lipocalins in Arthropod Chemical Communication

Jiao Zhu, Alessio Iannucci, Francesca Romana Dani, Wolfgang Knoll, Paolo Pelosi

    Publikation: Beitrag in FachzeitschriftArtikelBegutachtung


    Lipocalins represent one of the most successful superfamilies of proteins. Most of them are extracellular carriers for hydrophobic ligands across aqueous media, but other functions have been reported. They are present in most living organisms including bacteria. In animals they have been identified in mammals, molluscs, and arthropods; sequences have also been reported for plants. A subgroup of lipocalins, referred to as odorant-binding proteins (OBPs), mediate chemical communication in mammals by ferrying specific pheromones to the vomeronasal organ. So far, these proteins have not been reported as carriers of semiochemicals in other living organisms; instead chemical communication in arthropods is mediated by other protein families structurally unrelated to lipocalins. A search in the databases has revealed extensive duplication and differentiation of lipocalin genes in some species of insects, crustaceans, and chelicerates. Their large numbers, ranging from a handful to few dozens in the same species, their wide divergence, both within and between species, and their expression in chemosensory organs suggest that such expansion may have occurred under environmental pressure, thus supporting the hypothesis that lipocalins may be involved in chemical communication in arthropods.
    FachzeitschriftGenome Biology and Evolution
    PublikationsstatusVeröffentlicht - 2021

    Research Field

    • Biosensor Technologies


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