Genomic insight into the amino acid relations of the pea aphid, Acyrthosiphon pisum, with its symbiotic bacterium Buchnera aphidicola

A. C. C. Wilson, P. D. Ashton, F. Calevro, H. Charles, S. Colella, G. Febvay, G. Jander, P. F. Kushlan, S. J. Macdonald, J. F. Schwartz, G. H. Thomas, A. E. Douglas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The pea aphid genome includes 66 genes contributing to amino acid biosynthesis and 93 genes to amino acid degradation. In several respects, the pea aphid gene inventory complements that of its symbiotic bacterium, Buchnera aphidicola (Buchnera APS). Unlike other insects with completely sequenced genomes, the pea aphid lacks the capacity to synthesize arginine, which is produced by Buchnera APS. However, consistent with other insects, it has genes coding for individual reactions in essential amino acid biosynthesis, including threonine dehydratase and branched-chain amino acid aminotransferase, which are not coded in the Buchnera APS genome. Overall the genome data suggest that the biosynthesis of certain essential amino acids is shared between the pea aphid and Buchnera APS, providing the opportunity for precise aphid control over Buchnera metabolism.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)249-258
Number of pages10
JournalInsect Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Issue numberSUPPL. 2
Publication statusPublished - 10 Mar 2010


  • amino acid metabolism
  • essential amino acid
  • genome annotation
  • genomic complementarity
  • genome evolution
  • Hemiptera
  • symbiosis
  • SP APS
  • FATE

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