RPS6 transcriptional modulation in neural tissues of Nauphoeta cinerea during streptozotocin-associated sugar metabolism impairment.

Olawande C. Olagoke, Ana L.A. Segatto, Blessing A. Afolabi, Daniel Ardisson-Araujo, Michael Aschner, João B.T. Rocha

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The use of insects to model molecular events that characterize degenerative conditions was originally met with scepticism. However, the discovery of insect insulin-like peptides in the 1970's and the demonstration of evolutionary conservation of insulin-related signalling from insects to mammals have highlighted the importance and reduced cost of insect models in biomedical research. Here, we expand on our earlier described modelling of streptozotocin-induced brain glucose metabolic disruption in Nauphoeta cinerea, using RNA-sequencing analysis to study the transcriptional and genetic signatures of degeneration and stress signalling when glucose levels are elevated in the brain of the lobster cockroach. Nymphs were randomly divided into three groups: Control (0.8% NaCl), and two single streptozotocin injection doses (74 nmol and 740 nmol). The transcriptional analyses featured a dysregulation of 226 genes at high dose STZ treatment and 278 genes at the low dose. Our mRNA-sequencing data showed that ribosomal protein genes were the most upregulated genes at both 74 and 740 nmol STZ treatment. We therefore used RT-qPCR and relative transcriptional methods to validate our proposed mechanism of brain glucose toxicity-induced degeneration in Nauphoeta cinerea, which involved the upregulation of ribosomal proteins and rpS6 regulators (mTORC1, protein kinases, casein kinase 1 and Death-associated protein kinase), the upregulation of MAPK cascades (RAS, ERK, P38 and JNK), alongside the downregulation of the PI3K/AKT cascade. Taken together, this study highlights the remarkable opportunity for Nauphoeta cinerea use as an experimental organism in hyperglycaemia, degeneration, and stress signalling.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number110785
JournalComparative Biochemistry and Physiology -- Part B: Biochemistry and
StatePublished - Jan 2023


  • Gene ontology
  • PI3K/AKT cascade
  • RAS/MAPK signalling
  • RNA-seq
  • Ribosomal protein
  • mTOR

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Physiology
  • Aquatic Science
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Molecular Biology


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