Send to

Choose Destination
J Insect Physiol. 2014 Dec;71:1-7. doi: 10.1016/j.jinsphys.2014.09.008. Epub 2014 Sep 27.

Ethylparaben affects lifespan, fecundity, and the expression levels of ERR, EcR and YPR in Drosophila melanogaster.

Author information

College of Life Sciences, Shaanxi Normal University, Xi'an 710062, PR China.
College of Life Sciences, Shaanxi Normal University, Xi'an 710062, PR China. Electronic address:


Parabens, which mainly include methylparaben (MP), ethylparaben (EP), propylparaben (PP), and butylparaben (BP), are widely used as cosmetic and food preservatives. Although these chemicals, when used as preservatives, are thought to be safe for humans, many studies have demonstrated that they have estrogenic effects, and can affect the normal development and functions of the reproductive systems in a number of animal species. By treating fruit flies (Drosophila melanogaster) with EP, here we show that lower concentration of EP (0.02%) enhanced fertility while higher concentration of EP (0.10% and 0.20%) shortened the lifespan and reduced the fecundity of fruit flies. When we analyzed the expression levels of the estrogen-related receptor gene (ERR), ecdysone receptor gene (EcR) and Yolk protein receptor gene (YPR) from control and EP-treated fruit flies by using quantitative real-time PCR, we found that the expression levels of all three genes were significantly changed by EP treatment, and that female fruit flies are more sensitive to EP than males. Our data suggests that the estrogenic and the toxic effects of EP to fruit flies may have a molecular basis through the hormonal effect of EP.


Drosophila melanogaster; Ethylparaben; Fecundity; Gene expression; Lifespan

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center