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Benedikt Hacker, Christoph Schultheiß, Michael Döring, Ursula Kurzik-Dumke
This study provides first insights into the involvement of hNOT/ALG3, the human counterpart of the Drosophila NOT and yeast ALG3 gene, in various putative molecular networks. HNOT/ALG3 encodes two translated transcripts encoding precursor proteins differing in their N-terminus and showing 33% identity with the yeast asparagine-linked glycosylation 3 (ALG3) protein. Experimental evidence for the functional homology of the proteins of fly and man in the N-glycosylation has still to be provided. In this study, using the yeast two-hybrid technique we identify 17 molecular partners of hNOT-1/ALG3-1...
March 14, 2018: Human Molecular Genetics
Chang-Hui Tsao, Chien-Chun Chen, Chen-Han Lin, Hao-Yu Yang, Suewei Lin
The fruit fly can evaluate its energy state and decide whether to pursue food-related cues. Here, we reveal that the mushroom body (MB) integrates hunger and satiety signals to control food-seeking behavior. We have discovered five pathways in the MB essential for hungry flies to locate and approach food. Blocking the MB-intrinsic Kenyon cells (KCs) and the MB output neurons (MBONs) in these pathways impairs food-seeking behavior. Starvation bi-directionally modulates MBON responses to a food odor, suggesting that hunger and satiety controls occur at the KC-to-MBON synapses...
March 16, 2018: ELife
Mirko Moroni, M Rocio Servin-Vences, Raluca Fleischer, Oscar Sánchez-Carranza, Gary R Lewin
Mechanosensitive PIEZO ion channels are evolutionarily conserved proteins whose presence is critical for normal physiology in multicellular organisms. Here we show that, in addition to mechanical stimuli, PIEZO channels are also powerfully modulated by voltage and can even switch to a purely voltage-gated mode. Mutations that cause human diseases, such as xerocytosis, profoundly shift voltage sensitivity of PIEZO1 channels toward the resting membrane potential and strongly promote voltage gating. Voltage modulation may be explained by the presence of an inactivation gate in the pore, the opening of which is promoted by outward permeation...
March 15, 2018: Nature Communications
Kumaran Nagalingam, Michał T Lorenc, Sahana Manoli, Stephen L Cameron, Anthony R Clarke, Kevin J Dudley
Interactions between DNA and proteins located in the cell nucleus play an important role in controlling physiological processes by specifying, augmenting and regulating context-specific transcription events. Chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) is a widely used methodology to study DNA-protein interactions and has been successfully used in various cell types for over three decades. More recently, by combining ChIP with genomic screening technologies and Next Generation Sequencing (e.g. ChIP-seq), it has become possible to profile DNA-protein interactions (including covalent histone modifications) across entire genomes...
2018: PloS One
Nathan J Butterworth, Phillip G Byrne, Paul A Keller, James F Wallman
Cuticular hydrocarbons (CHCs) play an important role as contact pheromones in insects, particularly in flies. However, for many fly taxa our understanding of the importance of CHCs in sexual communication is limited. Within the family Calliphoridae (blowflies), sex-specific differences in CHCs have been reported for several species, but there is no evidence that CHCs facilitate sexual behavior. In order to elucidate the function of CHCs in Calliphoridae, studies combining behavioral and chemical analyses are required...
March 15, 2018: Journal of Chemical Ecology
Dror Cohen, Bruno van Swinderen, Naotsugu Tsuchiya
Hierarchically organized brains communicate through feedforward (FF) and feedback (FB) pathways. In mammals, FF and FB are mediated by higher and lower frequencies during wakefulness. FB is preferentially impaired by general anesthetics in multiple mammalian species. This suggests FB serves critical functions in waking brains. The brain of Drosophila melanogaster (fruit fly) is also hierarchically organized, but the presence of FB in these brains is not established. Here, we studied FB in the fly brain, by simultaneously recording local field potentials (LFPs) from low-order peripheral structures and higher-order central structures...
January 2018: ENeuro
Venkata Rajesh Yella, Aditya Kumar, Manju Bansal
Transcription is an intricate mechanism and is orchestrated at the promoter region. The cognate motifs in the promoters are observed in only a subset of total genes across different domains of life. Hence, sequence-motif based promoter prediction may not be a holistic approach for whole genomes. Conversely, the DNA structural property, duplex stability is a characteristic of promoters and can be used to delineate them from other genomic sequences. In this study, we have used a DNA duplex stability based algorithm 'PromPredict' for promoter prediction in a broad range of eukaryotes, representing various species of yeast, worm, fly, fish, and mammal...
March 14, 2018: Scientific Reports
Bernadette M Glasheen, Seemanti Ramanath, Monica Patel, Debra Sheppard, Joy T Puthawala, Lauren A Riley, Douglas M Swank
Muscles have evolved to power a wide variety of movements. A protein component critical to varying power generation is the myosin isoform present in the muscle. However, how functional variation in muscle arises from myosin structure is not well understood. We studied the influence of the converter, a myosin structural region at the junction of the lever arm and catalytic domain, using Drosophila because its single myosin heavy chain gene expresses five alternative converter versions (11a-e). We created five transgenic fly lines, each forced to express one of the converter versions in their indirect flight muscle (IFM) fibers...
March 13, 2018: Biophysical Journal
Hiroyuki Takaoka, Van Lun Low, Tiong Kai Tan, Yae-Te Huang, Masako Fukuda, Zubaidah Ya'cob
A new black fly species, Simulium haiduanense Takaoka, Low & Huang (Diptera: Simuliidae), is described on the basis of females, males, pupae, and mature larvae from Taiwan. This new species is placed in the Simulium argentipes species-group of the subgenus Simulium (Diptera: Simuliidae) and is characterized by the yellowish female legs, ovipositor valves rounded apically and with its inner margin concave, claw with a small subbasal tooth, male style without a basal protuberance, pupal gill with eight filaments, corbicular cocoon, and larval abdomen lacking paired protuberances...
March 12, 2018: Journal of Medical Entomology
Juan Jose Fraire-Zamora, Johannes Jaeger, Jérôme Solon
Evolution of morphogenesis is generally associated with changes in genetic regulation. Here, we report evidence indicating that dorsal closure, a conserved morphogenetic process in dipterans, evolved as the consequence of rearrangements in epithelial organization rather than signaling regulation. In Drosophila melanogaster , dorsal closure consists of a two-tissue system where the contraction of extraembryonic amnioserosa and a JNK/Dpp-dependent epidermal actomyosin cable result in microtubule-dependent seaming of the epidermis...
March 14, 2018: ELife
Irina I Ignatova, Andrew S French, Roman V Frolov
Natural visual scenes are rarely random. Instead, intensity and wavelength change slowly in time and space over many regions of the scene, so that neighboring temporal and spatial visual inputs are more correlated, and contain less information than truly random signals. It has been suggested that sensory optimization to match these higher order correlations (HOC) occurs at the earliest visual stages, and that photoreceptors can process temporal natural signals more efficiently than random signals. We tested this early stage hypothesis by comparing the information content of Calliphora vicina photoreceptor responses to naturalistic inputs before and after removing HOC by randomizing phase...
March 14, 2018: Journal of Neurophysiology
Xiaoyun Wang, Wanqiang Wang, Qiao Gao, Xiaoping Wang, Chaoliang Lei, Fen Zhu
Chrysomya megacephala is a saprophagous fly whose larvae can compost manure and yield biomass and bio-fertilizer simultaneously. However, there are concerns for the safety of the composting system, that is risk of diseases spread by way of manure pathogens, residue of harmful metals and emission of greenhouse gases. Microbiota analysis and heavy metal speciation by European Communities Bureau of Reference were evaluated in raw, C. megacephala-composted and natural stacked swine manure to survey pathogenic bacterial changes and mobility of lead and cadmium in manure after C...
March 14, 2018: Microbial Biotechnology
Kevin O Murray, Hunter L Paris, Alyce D Fly, Robert F Chapman, Timothy D Mickleborough
Rinsing the mouth with a carbohydrate solution has been shown to improve exercise performance in a manner similar to carbohydrate ingestion. However, the underlying mechanisms behind these ergogenic benefits remain unclear. This study evaluated whether rinsing the mouth with a carbohydrate solution alters plasma insulin and glucose concentration during the initial stages of a 40 km cycling time-trial. Eight trained, competitive cyclists [age (mean ± SEM) = 24 ± 2 y; V̇O2 max = 64.5 ± 2.2 ml·kg-1 ·min-1 ] completed three simulated 40 km time-trials comprised of a familiarization trial, a carbohydrate condition (CHO) and a placebo mouth rinse condition (PLA)...
March 2018: Journal of Sports Science & Medicine
Hiep H Tran, Suong N A Dang, Thanh T Nguyen, Anh M Huynh, Linh M Dao, Kaeko Kamei, Masamitsu Yamaguchi, Thao T P Dang
Parkinson's disease (PD) is the second most common neurodegenerative disorder worldwide. Many factors have been shown to contribute to its pathogenesis including genetic and environmental factors. Ubiquitin C-terminal hydrolase L1 (UCHL1) is also known to be involved in the pathogenesis of PD. We herein modeled the study of UCHL1 in Drosophila melanogaster and investigated its functions in PD. The specific knockdown of the Drosophila ortholog of UCHL1 (dUCH) in dopaminergic neurons (DA neurons) led to the underdevelopment and/or degeneration of these neurons, specifically in DL1 DA neuron cluster in the larval brain lobe and PPM2, PPM3, PPL2ab, and VUM DA neuron clusters in the adult brain...
March 13, 2018: Scientific Reports
Tomáš Štětina, Petr Hůla, Martin Moos, Petr Šimek, Petr Šmilauer, Vladimír Koštál
Physiological adjustments accompanying insect cold acclimation prior to cold stress have been relatively well explored. In contrast, recovery from cold stress received much less attention. Here we report on recovery of drosophilid fly larvae (Chymomyza costata) from three different levels of cold stress: supercooling to -10 °C, freezing at -30 °C, and cryopreservation at -196 °C. Analysis of larval CO2 production suggested that recovery from all three cold stresses requires access to additional energy reserves to support cold-injury repair processes...
March 13, 2018: Scientific Reports
Erica Cristina da Silva Chagas, Arineia Soares Silva, Nelson Ferreira Fé, Lucas Silva Ferreira, Vanderson de Souza Sampaio, Wagner Cosme Morhy Terrazas, Jorge Augusto Oliveira Guerra, Rodrigo Augusto Ferreira de Souza, Henrique Silveira, Maria das Graças Vale Barbosa Guerra
BACKGROUND: Phlebotomine sand flies (Diptera: Psychodidae) are vectors of Leishmania species, the etiological agents of leishmaniasis, which is one of the most important emerging infectious diseases in the Americas. In the state of Amazonas in Brazil, anthropogenic activities encourage the presence of these insects around rural homes. The present study aimed to describe the composition and distribution of sand fly species diversity among the ecotopes (intradomicile, peridomicile and forest) in an area of American cutaneous leishmaniasis transmission and detect natural infection with Leishmania DNA to evaluate which vectors are inside houses and whether the presence of possible vectors represents a hazard of transmission...
March 13, 2018: Parasites & Vectors
Charity G Owings, Christine Skaggs, Winyu Sheriff, Nicholas Manicke, Christine J Picard
Filth flies are commonly implicated in pathogen transmission routes due to their affinity for vertebrate waste and their synanthropic associations. However, solidifying the link between flies and infected feces in the wild can be difficult, as interpretations made solely from microbial culturing or sequencing methods may represent an incomplete picture of pathogen acquisition. We present an analytical assay using high performance liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (HPLC MS/MS) to detect vertebrate fecal metabolites (urobilinoids) in adult blow fly guts...
March 9, 2018: Environmental Entomology
Paul G Becher, Arne Hagman, Vasiliki Verschut, Amrita Chakraborty, Elżbieta Rozpędowska, Sébastien Lebreton, Marie Bengtsson, Gerhard Flick, Peter Witzgall, Jure Piškur
Yeast volatiles attract insects, which apparently is of mutual benefit, for both yeasts and insects. However, it is unknown whether biosynthesis of metabolites that attract insects is a basic and general trait, or if it is specific for yeasts that live in close association with insects. Our goal was to study chemical insect attractants produced by yeasts that span more than 250 million years of evolutionary history and vastly differ in their metabolism and lifestyle. We bioassayed attraction of the vinegar fly Drosophila melanogaster to odors of phylogenetically and ecologically distinct yeasts grown under controlled conditions...
March 2018: Ecology and Evolution
Cesar Nombela
On November 21, 2017, Professor Julio R. Villanueva died in Salamanca. Born on April 27, 1928 in Villamayor, council of Piloña (Asturias), he lived almost to the age of 90. His was an accomplished life, full of endeavors and exciting works in the world of research and teaching, which earned him very broad recognition both in Spain and the international arena. Villanueva was undoubtedly the driving force of Fundamental Microbiology in Spain. His early steps came at a time when experimental biology was arriving at an important new age, using microbial systems for experimentation that lead to general conclusions about all living beings...
December 2017: International Microbiology: the Official Journal of the Spanish Society for Microbiology
Steven Ger Nyanjom, Cyrus Tare, Fred Wamunyokoli, George Fredrick Obiero
Tsetse flies (Glossina) are vectors of African trypanosomiasis. Olfaction plays a critical role in Glossina behavior, including larviposition, feeding, and reproduction. Odorant receptors (ORs) are important in insect chemoreception as they bind volatile odorants and transport them to olfactory receptor neurons to elicit behavioral response. To better understand Glossina chemoreception, we used quantitative polymerase chain reaction to examine the expression levels of ORs in female and male Glossina morsitans morsitans Wiedemann, 1850 (Diptera: Glossinidae) antennae and legs...
February 26, 2018: Journal of Medical Entomology
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