Aberrant nutritional regulation of carbohydrate synthesis by parasitized Manduca sexta L

J Insect Physiol. 1998 Sep;44(9):745-753. doi: 10.1016/s0022-1910(98)00007-9.


The present studies confirm that storage carbohydrate synthesis from [1-(13)C]glucose is elevated in Manduca sexta parasitized by Cotesia congregata, despite a decrease in the rate of metabolism of the labeled substrate. Further, the results demonstrate that a similar pattern of carbohydrate synthesis and glucose metabolism was induced in normal larvae by administration of the glycolytic inhibitor, iodoacetate. (13)C enrichment of C6 of trehalose and glycogen demonstrated randomization of the C1 label at the triose phosphate step of the glycolytic/gluconeogenic pathway and suggested that gluconeogenesis, that is, de novo carbohydrate formation, contributed to the synthesis of carbohydrate in both normal and parasitized insects. Accounting for differences in the (13)C enrichment in C1 of trehalose and glycogen due to direct labeling from [1-(13)C]glucose, the mean C6/C1 labeling ratios in trehalose and glycogen of parasitized larvae and insects treated with iodoacetate were greater than the mean ratio observed in normal larvae, suggesting a greater contribution of gluconeogenesis to trehalose labeling in parasitized insects. This conclusion was confirmed by additional investigations on the metabolism of [3-(13)C]alanine by normal and parasitized insects. The pattern of (13)C enrichment in hemolymph trehalose observed in normal larvae maintained on a low carbohydrate diet indicated a large contribution of gluconeogenesis, while gluconeogenesis contributed very little to trehalose labeling in normal insects maintained on a high carbohydrate diet. Parasitized insects maintained on a high or a low carbohydrate diet displayed a significantly greater contribution of gluconeogenesis to trehalose labeling than was observed in normal larvae maintained on the same diets. In conclusion, these investigations indicate that regulation over the utilization of dietary glucose for trehalose and glycogen synthesis as well as the dietary regulation of de novo carbohydrate synthesis were altered by parasitism.