Author(s): Tellam RL, Wijffels G, Willadsen P
Abstract Share this page
Abstract The peritrophic matrix (or peritrophic membrane) lines the gut of most insects at one or more stages of the life cycle. It has important roles in the facilitation of the digestive processes in the gut and the protection of the insect from invasion by microorganisms and parasites. The traditional view of the peritrophic matrix as a relatively insert sieve, composed largely of proteins and glycosaminoglycans embedded in a chitinous matrix, is under revision as more is learned about the molecular characteristics of the peritrophic matrix proteins. This review summarizes emerging knowledge of the main protein constituents of the peritrophic matrix. The availability of the first sequences of integral peritrophic matrix proteins has coincided with the explosion of information in sequence databases. It is therefore possible to examine common structural themes in this family of proteins as well as in proteins of unknown location and function from a variety of other insects, nematodes and viruses. The review concludes with speculation about the biological functions of the proteins in this matrix.
This article was published in Insect Biochem Mol Biol
and referenced in Biochemistry & Physiology: Open Access