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Bases génétiques et mécanismes cytologiques à l'origine de la diversité de l'incompatibilité cytoplasmique induite par Wolbachia chez le moustique Culex pipiens

Abstract : Wolbachia are intracellular alpha-proteobacteria vertically transmitted from mothers to their offspring through oocytes. As a consequence of this transmission mode, reproductive manipulation strategies that promote bacteria spread in host populations have been selected. The most common manipulation used by Wolbachia is called cytoplasmic incompatibility (CI). CI occurs when infected males mate with uninfected or incompatible Wolbachia-infected females and results in the death of offspring before hatching. CI is generally conceptualized as a mod/resc or toxin/antidote model in which paternal Wolbachia would introduce a toxin (mod function) in sperms which would, after fertilization, induce embryonic death unless an antidote produced by maternal Wolbachia in the egg counteracts its effect (resc function). A to date unique diversity of CI phenotypes has been described in the mosquito species Culex pipiens. This diversity is based solely on the diversity of Wolbachia strains hosted by C. pipiens. In this PhD, we conducted, in C. pipiens, the first study of the cytological mechanism behind embryonic mortality in CI crosses. We showed that paternal chromatin condensation and segregation defects during the first embryonic division were responsible for embryonic death in all CI crosses. These CI defects were the only ones observed indicating that the diversity of CI phenotypes in C. pipiens is not based on a diversity of cellular mechanisms. We then studied the cidA/cidB operon in several wPip strains as the functional involvement of this operon in CI was recently demonstrated in Drosophila. We showed that this operon is amplified and polymorphic in all genomes of sequenced wPip. Investigation of cidA/cidB variants in Wolbachia genomes infecting natural populations of C. pipiens, using more than 250 isofemale lines, enabled us to reveal a robust association between cidB variations and change in mod phenotype. In addition, the presence of an ubiquitous cidA variant supports the role of this gene in the resc function. In C. pipiens, the cidA/cidB operon, through its amplification and diversification, is involved in the CI phenotypes diversity and would operate as a toxin-mod / antidote-resc system: cidB being involved in the mod function and cidA in the resc function.
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Manon Bonneau. Bases génétiques et mécanismes cytologiques à l'origine de la diversité de l'incompatibilité cytoplasmique induite par Wolbachia chez le moustique Culex pipiens. Sciences agricoles. Université Montpellier, 2018. Français. ⟨NNT : 2018MONTG053⟩. ⟨tel-02010568⟩

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