Identification, expression, and endocrine-disruption of three ecdysone-responsive genes in the sentinel species Gammarus fossarum.
Sci Rep, 8(1):3793.
Taking advantage of a large transcriptomic dataset recently obtained in the sentinel crustacean amphipod Gammarus fossarum, we developed an approach based on sequence similarity and phylogenetic reconstruction to identify key players involved in the endocrine regulation of G. fossarum. Our work identified three genes of interest: the nuclear receptors RXR and E75, and the regulator broad-complex (BR). Their involvement in the regulation of molting and reproduction, along with their sensitivity to chemical contamination were experimentally assessed by studying gene expression during the female reproductive cycle, and after laboratory exposure to model endocrine disrupting compounds (EDCs): pyriproxyfen, tebufenozide and piperonyl butoxide. RXR expression suggested a role of this gene in ecdysis and post-molting processes. E75 presented two expression peaks that suggested a role in vitellogenesis, and molting. BR expression showed no variation during molting/reproductive cycle. After exposure to the three EDCs, a strong inhibition of the inter-molt E75 peakwas observed with tebufenozide, and an induction of RXR after exposure to pyriproxyfen and piperonyl butoxide. These results confirm the implication of RXR and E75 in hormonal regulation of female reproductive cycles in G. fossarum and their sensitivity towards EDCs opens the possibility of using them as specific endocrine disruption biomarkers.