Rickettsia-like organisms (RLO) from tsetse midguts and mosquito cell cultures showed high levels of endochitinase activity. A line of Glossina morsitans morsitans highly susceptible to midgut trypanosome infection and with high incidence of RLO infection showed significantly greater chitinolytic activity than G. austeni which had low RLO incidence and were correspondingly refractory to midgut infection. Midgut infection rates of Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense in G. m. morsitans showed a dose-related increase when flies were fed N-acetyl-D-glucosamine (GlcNAc) in the infective meal and for 4 subsequent days. A model is proposed for susceptibility to trypanosome infection based on the generation of GlcNAc by RLO endochitinase activity in tsetse pupae inhibiting midgut lectin in teneral flies.
Welburn, S.C.; Arnold, K.; Maudlin, I.; Gooday, G.W. Rickettsia-like organisms and chitinase production in relation to transmission of trypanosomes by tsetse flies. Parasitology (1993) 107 (02) 141-145. [DOI: 10.1017/S003118200006724X]