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PLoS One. 2012;7(2):e31513. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0031513. Epub 2012 Feb 7.

Dopamine modulates metabolic rate and temperature sensitivity in Drosophila melanogaster.

Author information

1
Department of Stem Cell Biology, Institute of Embryology and Genetics, Kumamoto University, Kumamoto, Japan.

Abstract

Homeothermal animals, such as mammals, maintain their body temperature by heat generation and heat dissipation, while poikilothermal animals, such as insects, accomplish it by relocating to an environment of their favored temperature. Catecholamines are known to regulate thermogenesis and metabolic rate in mammals, but their roles in other animals are poorly understood. The fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, has been used as a model system for the genetic studies of temperature preference behavior. Here, we demonstrate that metabolic rate and temperature sensitivity of some temperature sensitive behaviors are regulated by dopamine in Drosophila. Temperature-sensitive molecules like dTrpA1 and shi(ts) induce temperature-dependent behavioral changes, and the temperature at which the changes are induced were lowered in the dopamine transporter-defective mutant, fumin. The mutant also displays a preference for lower temperatures. This thermophobic phenotype was rescued by the genetic recovery of the dopamine transporter in dopamine neurons. Flies fed with a dopamine biosynthesis inhibitor (3-iodo-L-tyrosine), which diminishes dopamine signaling, exhibited preference for a higher temperature. Furthermore, we found that the metabolic rate is up-regulated in the fumin mutant. Taken together, dopamine has functions in the temperature sensitivity of behavioral changes and metabolic rate regulation in Drosophila, as well as its previously reported functions in arousal/sleep regulation.

PMID:
22347491
PMCID:
PMC3274542
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0031513
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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