Recognition and elimination of diversified pathogens in insect defense systems

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15 Citations (Scopus)


The elimination of infectious non-self by the host defense systems of multicellular organisms requires a variety of recognition and effector molecules. The diversity is generated in somatic cells or encoded in the germ-line. In adaptive immunity in jawed vertebrates, the diversity of immunoglobulins and antigen receptors is generated by gene rearrangements in somatic cells. In innate immunity, various effector molecules and pattern recognition receptors, such as antimicrobial peptides and peptidoglycan recognition proteins, are encoded in the germ-line of multicellular organisms, including insects and jawed vertebrates. In the present review, we discuss how insect host defense systems recognize and eliminate a multitude of microbes via germ-line-encoded molecules, including recent findings that a Drosophila member of the immunoglobulin superfamily is extensively diversified by alternative splicing in somatic immune cells and participates in the elimination of bacteria.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)599-605
Number of pages7
JournalMolecular Diversity
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2006 Nov


  • Antimicrobial peptides
  • Down syndrome cell adhesion molecule
  • Immunoglobulin-superfamily
  • Pathogens
  • Pattern recognition receptors
  • Peptidoglycan recognition protein

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Information Systems
  • Molecular Biology
  • Drug Discovery
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry


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