Document Type


Publication Date




Publication Title

Parasites & Vectors




593 (12 pages)


Background: Ixodes scapularis organic anion transporting polypeptides (OATPs) play important roles in tickrickettsial pathogen interactions. In this report, we characterized the role of these conserved molecules in ticks infected with either Lyme disease agent Borrelia burgdorferi or tick-borne Langat virus (LGTV), a pathogen closely related to tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV).

Results: Quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction analysis revealed no significant changes in oatps gene expression upon infection with B. burgdorferi in unfed ticks. Synchronous infection of unfed nymphal ticks with LGTV in vitro revealed no significant changes in oatps gene expression. However, expression of specific oatps was significantly downregulated upon LGTV infection of tick cells in vitro. Treatment of tick cells with OATP inhibitor significantly reduced LGTV loads, kynurenine amino transferase (kat), a gene involved in the production of tryptophan metabolite xanthurenic acid (XA), levels and expression of several oatps in tick cells. Furthermore, bioinformatics characterization of OATPs from some of the medically important vectors including ticks, mosquitoes and lice revealed the presence of several glycosylation, phosphorylation and myristoylation sites.

Conclusions: This study provides additional evidence on the role of arthropod OATPs in vector-intracellular pathogen interactions.


© The Author(s). 2018 Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

Original Publication Citation

Taank, V., Zhou, W. S., Zhuang, X. R., Anderson, J. F., Pal, U., Sultana, H., & Neelakanta, G. (2018). Characterization of tick organic anion transporting polypeptides (OATPs) upon bacterial and viral infections. Parasites & Vectors, 11, 593. doi:10.1186/s13071-018-3160-6