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Open Access Open Badges Research article

Transcriptome response analysis of Arabidopsis thaliana to leafminer (Liriomyza huidobrensis)

Sufang Zhang12, Zhen Zhang2 and Le Kang1*

Author Affiliations

1 State Key Laboratory of Integrated Management of Pest Insects and Rodents, Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China

2 Key Laboratory of Forest Protection, Research Institute of Forest Ecology, Environment and Protection, Chinese Academy of Forestry, State Forestry Administration, Beijing, China

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BMC Plant Biology 2012, 12:234  doi:10.1186/1471-2229-12-234

Published: 11 December 2012



Plants have evolved a complicated resistance system and exhibit a variety of defense patterns in response to different attackers. Previous studies have shown that responses of plants to chewing insects and phloem-feeding insects are significantly different. Less is known, however, regarding molecular responses to leafminer insects. To investigate plant transcriptome response to leafminers, we selected the leafminer Liriomyza huidobrensis, which has a special feeding pattern more similar to pathogen damage than that of chewing insects, as a model insect, and Arabidopsis thaliana as a response plant.


We first investigated local and systemic responses of A. thaliana to leafminer feeding using an Affymetrix ATH1 genome array. Genes related to metabolic processes and stimulus responses were highly regulated. Most systemically-induced genes formed a subset of the local response genes. We then downloaded gene expression data from online databases and used hierarchical clustering to explore relationships among gene expression patterns in A. thaliana damaged by different attackers.


Our results demonstrate that plant response patterns are strongly coupled to damage patterns of attackers.

Plant defenses; Transcriptome; Microarray; Leaf miner; Pathogen; Systemic defense