The beet armyworm (Spodoptera exigua) and the rice water weevil (Lissorhoptrus oryzophilus) are two important insect pests in rice production. To identify insect-responsive genes in rice, we performed a deep transcriptome analysis of Nipponbare rice leaves infested with both beet armyworm and water weevil using massively parallel signature sequencing (MPSS). Many antisense, alternative, and novel transcripts were commonly and specifically induced and suppressed in the infested tissue. Key genes involved in the defense metabolic pathways such as salicylic acid and jasmonic acid biosynthesis pathways were up-regulated in the infested leaves. To validate the MPSS results, we analyzed the transcriptome of the rice leaves infested with water weevils using Solexa’s sequencing-bysynthesis (SBS) method. The MPSS and SBS data were highly correlated (Pearson’s correlation coefficient=0.85), and 83% of genes had similar gene expression in both libraries. Our comprehensive and in-depth survey of the insect-infested libraries provides a rich genomic resource for further analyzing the function of key regulatory genes involved in insect resistance in rice.
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