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Mol Syst Biol. 2012;8:600. doi: 10.1038/msb.2012.29.

Effects of diet and development on the Drosophila lipidome.

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Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics, Dresden, Germany.


Cells produce tens of thousands of different lipid species, but the importance of this complexity in vivo is unclear. Analysis of individual tissues and cell types has revealed differences in abundance of individual lipid species, but there has been no comprehensive study comparing tissue lipidomes within a single developing organism. Here, we used quantitative shotgun profiling by high-resolution mass spectrometry to determine the absolute (molar) content of 250 species of 14 major lipid classes in 6 tissues of animals at 27 developmental stages raised on 4 different diets. Comparing these lipidomes revealed unexpected insights into lipid metabolism. Surprisingly, the fatty acids present in dietary lipids directly influence tissue phospholipid composition throughout the animal. Furthermore, Drosophila differentially regulates uptake, mobilization and tissue accumulation of specific sterols, and undergoes unsuspected shifts in fat metabolism during larval and pupal development. Finally, we observed striking differences between tissue lipidomes that are conserved between phyla. This study provides a comprehensive, quantitative and expandable resource for further pharmacological and genetic studies of metabolic disorders and molecular mechanisms underlying dietary response.

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