Cooperation of enzymes involved in carbohydrate digestion of Colorado potato beetle (Leptinotarsa decemlineata, Say)

E. Szilágyi, C. Hámori, P. Bíró-Molnár, L. Kandra, J. Remenyik, G. Gyémánt

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Colorado potato beetle (Leptinotarsa decemlineata, Say) is the main pest of Solanaceae and its survival is mainly dependent on the carbohydrate digestion. Characterizing the gut enzymes may help us with finding effective inhibitors for plant protection. Activity measurements revealed that gut extracts contain α- and β-glucosidase in addition to α-amylase. For larvae, amylase activity was detected only in gut saturated with nutrients. Leptinotarsa decemlineata α-amylase (LDAmy) had optimum pH of 6.0 and was active under 30-40°C temperature measured on a selective α-amylase substrate, 2-chloro-4-nitrophenyl-4-O-α-D-galactopyranosyl-maltoside. HPLC analysis demonstrated dimer, trimer, and tetramer reducing end amylolytic products from 2-chloro-4-nitrophenyl-maltoheptaoside substrate in similar ratio than that of during porcine pancreatic α-amylase (PPA) catalyzed hydrolysis. The 4,6-O-benzylidene-modified substrate (BzG7PNP) is very stable toward hydrolysis by exo-glycosidases, therefore is very useful to monitor the digestion catalyzed by α-amylases exclusively. Similarly to PPA active site, three glycon and two aglycon binding sites are suggested for LDAmy based on the pattern of early hydrolysis products of BzG7PNP. The observed similarity between LDAmy and PPA raises the possibility of using known inhibitors of mammalian α-amylases to protect the potato plant from attack of Colorado potato beetle.

Original languageEnglish
JournalBulletin of Entomological Research
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2019



  • alpha-amylase
  • carbohydrate digestion
  • chromogen substrates
  • Colorado potato beetle
  • gut enzymes
  • HPLC

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Insect Science

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