Cytometric analysis, genetic manipulation and antibiotic selection of the snail embryonic cell line Bge from Biomphalaria glabrata, the intermediate host of Schistosoma mansoni

Rinaldi, Gabriel, Yan, Hongbin, Nacif-Pimenta, Rafael, Matchimakul, Pitchaya, Bridger, Joanna, Mann, Victoria H., Smout, Michael J., Brindley, Paul J., and Knight, Matty (2015) Cytometric analysis, genetic manipulation and antibiotic selection of the snail embryonic cell line Bge from Biomphalaria glabrata, the intermediate host of Schistosoma mansoni. International Journal for Parasitology, 45 (8). pp. 527-535.

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The invertebrate cell line, Bge, from embryos of the snail Biomphalaria glabrata, remains to date the only established cell line from any species of the Phylum Mollusca. Since its establishment in 1976 by Eder Hansen, few studies have focused on profiling its cytometrics, growth characteristics or sensitivity to xenobiotics. Bge cells are reputed to be challenging to propagate and maintain. Therefore, even though this cell line is a noteworthy resource, it has not been studied widely. With growing interest in functional genomics, including genetic transformation, to elucidate molecular aspects of the snail intermediate hosts responsible for transmission of schistosomiasis, and aiming to enhance the convenience of maintenance of this molluscan cell line, we deployed the xCELLigene real time approach to study Bge cells. Doubling times for three isolates of Bge, termed CB, SL and UK, were longer than for mammalian cell lines - longer than 40 h in complete Bge medium supplemented with 7% fetal bovine serum at 25 °C, ranging from ∼42 h to ∼157 h when 40,000 cells were seeded. To assess the potential of the cells for genetic transformation, antibiotic selection was explored. Bge cells were sensitive to the aminonucleoside antibiotic puromycin (from Streptomyces alboniger) from 5 μg/ml to 200 ng/ml, displaying a half maximal inhibitory concentration (IC50) of ∼1.91 μg/ml. Sensitivity to puromycin, and a relatively quick kill time (<48 h in 5 μg/ml) facilitated use of this antibiotic, together with the cognate resistance gene (puromycin N-acetyl-transferase) for selection of Bge cells transformed with the PAC gene (puroR). Bge cells transfected with a plasmid encoding puroR were partially rescued when cultured in the presence of 5 μg/ml of puromycin. These findings pave the way for the development of functional genomic tools applied to the host-parasite interaction during schistosomiasis and neglected tropical trematodiases at large.

Item ID: 41911
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1879-0135
Keywords: Biomphalaria glabrata, molluscan embryonic cell line (Bge), xCELLigence real time cellular analysis (RTCA), cytometrics, genetic transformation, antibiotic selection
Funders: National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, National Institutes of Health (NIH), USA
Projects and Grants: NIH 1R21AI109532-01A1, NIH 1R01AI072773
Date Deposited: 08 Dec 2015 15:00
FoR Codes: 06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0605 Microbiology > 060502 Infectious Agents @ 10%
06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0608 Zoology > 060802 Animal Cell and Molecular Biology @ 60%
06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0608 Zoology > 060808 Invertebrate Biology @ 30%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9201 Clinical Health (Organs, Diseases and Abnormal Conditions) > 920109 Infectious Diseases @ 20%
97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970106 Expanding Knowledge in the Biological Sciences @ 40%
97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970110 Expanding Knowledge in Technology @ 40%
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