Identification of tick periviscerokinin, the first neurohormone of Ixodidae: Single cell analysis by means of MALDI-TOF/TOF mass spectrometry

Susanne Neupert, Reinhard Predel, William Russell, Ronald Davies, Patricia V. Pietrantonio, Ronald J. Nachman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

34 Scopus citations


The first peptidergic neurohormone from the ticks Ixodes ricinus and Boophilus microplus has been identified by using a combination of immunocytochemistry and mass spectrometric analysis of single cells. The novel peptide (Ixori-PVK, PALIPFPRV-NH2) shows a high sequence homology with members of the insect periviscerokinin/CAP2b peptides that in insects are involved in the regulation of water balance. The function of this peptide in ticks is still unknown, but these pests consume large amounts of blood in a single blood meal which is a challenge for the regulation of diuretic processes. Thus, the novel peptide may be involved in one of the key physiological processes in ticks. High energy collision-induced dissociation was successfully used to distinguish between Leu/Ile ambiguities in single cell preparations. This is the first successful de novo sequencing of a peptide from single cell preparations of arthropods.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1860-1864
Number of pages5
JournalBiochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 30 2005
Externally publishedYes



  • Boophilus
  • Ixodes
  • MALDI-TOF/TOF mass spectrometry
  • Neuropeptide
  • Periviscerokinin
  • Single cell analysis
  • Tick

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Biophysics
  • Molecular Biology

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