The venom of Megarhyssa (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae): Putative proteins and possible functions
RNA isolated from the abdomen of female wasps was sequenced and the resulting contigs were transformed into a database against which known hymenopteran venom proteins and wood degrading enzymes were queried. In this bioinformatic study more than 150 hymenopteran venom proteins showed significant sequence similarity to Megarhyssa transcripts. The enzymes laccase and glycosyl hydrolase, which are associated with wood degradation, also returned significant hits from the wasp transcriptome.
Separation of venom proteins using gel electrophoresis indicates that the composition of the venom is variable among species and the results of a mass spectrometry analysis of each venom sample will be discussed.