Phlebotomus argentipes is an established vector for Visceral leishmaniasis prevalent in the Indian subcontinent. Insect Glutathione S-transferases (GST) enzyme plays a pivotal role in the metabolism of xenobiotics and chemical insecticides. We report herein the identification and characterization of a delta class GST from the sandfly, P. argentipes. The resulting clone (rParg-GSTδ) is successfully sequenced, which revealed 76.43% and 66.32% gene identity with GST from Phlebotomus papatasi (Scopoli; Diptera: Psychodidae) and Lutzomiya longipalpis (Lutz and Neiva; Diptera: Psychodidae), respectively. The identified rParg-GST amino acid Blast results revealed 82.6% homology to delta class GST of Phlebotomus papatasi and more than 50% homology to Lepidoptera which comprises butterflies and moths. The Phylogenetic analysis of Parg-GST with different classes of Insect GSTs further supported its classification as delta class. A functional recombinant Parg-GSTδ protein (rParg-GSTδ) was expressed in Escherichia coli (Migula; Enterobacterales: Enterobacteriaceae) cells in a soluble form, purified to homogeneity and found to be active against a substrate 1-chloro-2,4-dintrobenzene (CDNB) and lipid peroxidation by-product 4-Hydrxynonenal (4-HNE). Interestingly, rParg-GSTδ demonstrates high dehydrochlorination activity against dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) i.e., 16.27 nM/µg in high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) assay. These results provide evidence of direct DDT metabolism property exhibited by P. argentipes GST and set the foundation to decipher the metabolic resistance mechanism in P. argentipes against insecticides.
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Vol. 58 • No. 6