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The larvae of Ectomyelois ceratoniae Zeller were reared on the artificial diets containing 2% of Citrullus colocynthis L. (Cucurbitaceae) lectin and control to find any changes in gene expression of caspases. Specific primers were designed to amplify genes of six found caspases including Caspase 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6. RNA of both treatments were extracted and cDNA molecules were synthesized prior to gene expression. Results of quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction revealed that expression of all caspases in the fed larvae by 2% of lectin increased in comparison with control except for caspase 1 as 2.99, 5.7, 17.13, 23.18, 10.44-fold. These results are consistent with our previous studies on the lower activities of digestive enzymes that are due to death of midgut cells followed by binding of lectin molecule.
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