Although only distantly related to humans, many aspects of energy homeostasis are conserved in Drosophila melanogaster. Previous results suggested that synphilin-1 (SP1), a cytoplasmic protein enriched in neurons, can regulate metabolic homeostasis in mice. Liu et al. further investigated the function of this protein using Drosophila as a tool, and report that transgenic expression of human SP1 in neurons, but not in the periphery, results in increased fat accumulation. SP1 expression in dopaminergic neurons induced modest increases in the body weight of adult flies, and doubled the size of the fat body (the functional equivalent of adipose tissue) and lipid droplets in larvae. The results of additional assays attributed these changes to increased food intake, rather than decreased energy expenditure. This study validates Drosophila for studying neuronal control of metabolic homeostasis and suggests a newly identified function of SP1 in control of energy balance.
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RESEARCH HIGHLIGHT| 01 September 2012
SP1 in fly neurons promotes positive energy balance
Online Issn: 1754-8411
Print Issn: 1754-8403
Written by editorial staff. © 2012. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0), which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution and reproduction in any medium provided that the original work is properly cited and all further distributions of the work or adaptation are subject to the same Creative Commons License terms.
Dis Model Mech (2012) 5 (5): 567.
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SP1 in fly neurons promotes positive energy balance. Dis Model Mech 1 September 2012; 5 (5): 567. doi:
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