Foraging alters resilience/vulnerability to sleep disruption and starvation in Drosophila.
ABSTRACT: Recent human studies suggest that genetic polymorphisms allow an individual to maintain optimal cognitive functioning during sleep deprivation. If such polymorphisms were not associated with additional costs, selective pressures would allow these alleles to spread through the population such that an evolutionary alternative to sleep would emerge. To determine whether there are indeed costs associated with resiliency to sleep loss, we challenged natural allelic variants of the foraging gene (for) with either sleep deprivation or starvation. Flies with high levels of Protein Kinase G (PKG) (for(R)) do not display deficits in short-term memory following 12 h of sleep deprivation. However, short-term memory is significantly disrupted when for(R) flies are starved overnight. In contrast, flies with low levels of PKG (for(s), for(s2)) show substantial deficits in short-term memory following sleep deprivation but retain their ability to learn after 12 h of starvation. We found that for(R) phenotypes could be largely recapitulated in for(s) flies by selectively increasing the level of PKG in the ?/? lobes of the mushroom bodies, a structure known to regulate both sleep and memory. Together, these data indicate that whereas the expression of for may appear to provide resilience in one environmental context, it may confer an unexpected vulnerability in other situations. Understanding how these tradeoffs confer resilience or vulnerability to specific environmental challenges may provide additional clues as to why an evolutionary alternative to sleep has not emerged.
Project description:Individuals frequently find themselves confronted with a variety of challenges that threaten their wellbeing. While some individuals face these challenges efficiently and thrive (resilient) others are unable to cope and may suffer persistent consequences (vulnerable). Resilience/vulnerability to sleep disruption may contribute to the vulnerability of individuals exposed to challenging conditions. With that in mind we exploited individual differences in a fly's ability to form short-term memory (STM) following 3 different types of sleep disruption to identify the underlying genes. Our analysis showed that in each category of flies examined, there are individuals that form STM in the face of sleep loss (resilient) while other individuals show dramatic declines in cognitive behavior (vulnerable). Molecular genetic studies revealed that Antimicrobial Peptides, factors important for innate immunity, were candidates for conferring resilience/vulnerability to sleep deprivation. Specifically, Metchnikowin (Mtk), drosocin (dro) and Attacin (Att) transcript levels seemed to be differentially increased by sleep deprivation in glia (Mtk), neurons (dro) or primarily in the head fat body (Att). Follow-up genetic studies confirmed that expressing Mtk in glia but not neurons, and expressing dro in neurons but not glia, disrupted memory while modulating sleep in opposite directions. These data indicate that various factors within glia or neurons can contribute to individual differences in resilience/vulnerability to sleep deprivation.
Project description:Flies mutant for the canonical clock protein cycle (cyc(01)) exhibit a sleep rebound that is ?10 times larger than wild-type flies and die after only 10 h of sleep deprivation. Surprisingly, when starved, cyc(01) mutants can remain awake for 28 h without demonstrating negative outcomes. Thus, we hypothesized that identifying transcripts that are differentially regulated between waking induced by sleep deprivation and waking induced by starvation would identify genes that underlie the deleterious effects of sleep deprivation and/or protect flies from the negative consequences of waking.We used partial complementary DNA microarrays to identify transcripts that are differentially expressed between cyc(01) mutants that had been sleep deprived or starved for 7 h. We then used genetics to determine whether disrupting genes involved in lipid metabolism would exhibit alterations in their response to sleep deprivation.Laboratory.Drosophila melanogaster.Sleep deprivation and starvation.We identified 84 genes with transcript levels that were differentially modulated by 7 h of sleep deprivation and starvation in cyc(01) mutants and were confirmed in independent samples using quantitative polymerase chain reaction. Several of these genes were predicted to be lipid metabolism genes, including bubblegum, cueball, and CG4500, which based on our data we have renamed heimdall (hll). Using lipidomics we confirmed that knockdown of hll using RNA interference significantly decreased lipid stores. Importantly, genetically modifying bubblegum, cueball, or hll resulted in sleep rebound alterations following sleep deprivation compared to genetic background controls.We have identified a set of genes that may confer resilience/vulnerability to sleep deprivation and demonstrate that genes involved in lipid metabolism modulate sleep homeostasis.
Project description:Sleep is a nearly universal behavior that is regulated by diverse environmental stimuli and physiological states. A defining feature of sleep is a homeostatic rebound following deprivation, where animals compensate for lost sleep by increasing sleep duration and/or sleep depth. The fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, exhibits robust recovery sleep following deprivation and represents a powerful model to study neural circuits regulating sleep homeostasis. Numerous neuronal populations have been identified in modulating sleep homeostasis as well as depth, raising the possibility that the duration and quality of recovery sleep is dependent on the environmental or physiological processes that induce sleep deprivation. Here, we find that unlike most pharmacological and environmental manipulations commonly used to restrict sleep, starvation potently induces sleep loss without a subsequent rebound in sleep duration or depth. Both starvation and a sucrose-only diet result in increased sleep depth, suggesting that dietary protein is essential for normal sleep depth and homeostasis. Finally, we find that Drosophila insulin like peptide 2 (Dilp2) is acutely required for starvation-induced changes in sleep depth without regulating the duration of sleep. Flies lacking Dilp2 exhibit a compensatory sleep rebound following starvation-induced sleep deprivation, suggesting Dilp2 promotes resiliency to sleep loss. Together, these findings reveal innate resilience to starvation-induced sleep loss and identify distinct mechanisms that underlie starvation-induced changes in sleep duration and depth.
Project description:Knowing which genes contribute to natural variation in learning and memory would help us understand how differences in these cognitive traits evolve among populations and species. We show that a natural polymorphism at the foraging (for) locus, which encodes a cGMP-dependent protein kinase (PKG), affects associative olfactory learning in Drosophila melanogaster. In an assay that tests the ability to associate an odor with mechanical shock, flies homozygous for one natural allelic variant of this gene (forR) showed better short-term but poorer long-term memory than flies homozygous for another natural allele (fors). The fors allele is characterized by reduced PKG activity. We showed that forR-like levels of both short-term learning and long-term memory can be induced in fors flies by selectively increasing the level of PKG in the mushroom bodies, which are centers of olfactory learning in the fly brain. Thus, the natural polymorphism at for may mediate an evolutionary tradeoff between short- and long-term memory. The respective strengths of learning performance of the two genotypes seem coadapted with their effects on foraging behavior: forR flies move more between food patches and so could particularly benefit from fast learning, whereas fors flies are more sedentary, which should favor good long-term memory.
Project description:Animals maximize fitness by modulating sleep and foraging strategies in response to changes in nutrient availability. Wild populations of the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, display highly variable levels of starvation and desiccation resistance that differ in accordance with geographic location, nutrient availability, and evolutionary history. Further, flies potently modulate sleep in response to changes in food availability, and selection for starvation resistance enhances sleep, revealing strong genetic relationships between sleep and nutrient availability. To determine the genetic and evolutionary relationship between sleep and nutrient deprivation, we assessed sleep in flies selected for desiccation or starvation resistance. While starvation resistant flies have higher levels of triglycerides, desiccation resistant flies have enhanced glycogen stores, indicative of distinct physiological adaptations to food or water scarcity. Strikingly, selection for starvation resistance, but not desiccation resistance, leads to increased sleep, indicating that enhanced sleep is not a generalized consequence of higher energy stores. Thermotolerance is not altered in starvation or desiccation resistant flies, providing further evidence for context-specific adaptation to environmental stressors. F2 hybrid flies were generated by crossing starvation selected flies with desiccation selected flies, and the relationship between nutrient deprivation and sleep was examined. Hybrids exhibit a positive correlation between starvation resistance and sleep, while no interaction was detected between desiccation resistance and sleep, revealing that prolonged sleep provides an adaptive response to starvation stress. Therefore, these findings demonstrate context-specific evolution of enhanced sleep in response to chronic food deprivation, and provide a model for understanding the evolutionary relationship between sleep and nutrient availability.
Project description:Extended periods of waking result in physiological impairments in humans, rats, and flies. Sleep homeostasis, the increase in sleep observed following sleep loss, is believed to counter the negative effects of prolonged waking by restoring vital biological processes that are degraded during sleep deprivation. Sleep homeostasis, as with other behaviors, is influenced by both genes and environment. We report here that during periods of starvation, flies remain spontaneously awake but, in contrast to sleep deprivation, do not accrue any of the negative consequences of prolonged waking. Specifically, the homeostatic response and learning impairments that are a characteristic of sleep loss are not observed following prolonged waking induced by starvation. Recently, two genes, brummer (bmm) and Lipid storage droplet 2 (Lsd2), have been shown to modulate the response to starvation. bmm mutants have excess fat and are resistant to starvation, whereas Lsd2 mutants are lean and sensitive to starvation. Thus, we hypothesized that bmm and Lsd2 may play a role in sleep regulation. Indeed, bmm mutant flies display a large homeostatic response following sleep deprivation. In contrast, Lsd2 mutant flies, which phenocopy aspects of starvation as measured by low triglyceride stores, do not exhibit a homeostatic response following sleep loss. Importantly, Lsd2 mutant flies are not learning impaired after sleep deprivation. These results provide the first genetic evidence, to our knowledge, that lipid metabolism plays an important role in regulating the homeostatic response and can protect against neuronal impairments induced by prolonged waking.
Project description:BACKGROUND:One hypothesis for the function of sleep is that it serves as a mechanism to conserve energy. Recent studies have suggested that increased sleep can be an adaptive mechanism to improve survival under food deprivation in Drosophila melanogaster. To test the generality of this hypothesis, we compared sleep and its plastic response to starvation in a temperate and tropical population of Drosophila melanogaster. RESULTS:We found that flies from the temperate population were more starvation resistant, and hypothesized that they would engage in behaviors that are considered to conserve energy, including increased sleep and reduced movement. Surprisingly, temperate flies slept less and moved more when they were awake compared to tropical flies, both under fed and starved conditions, therefore sleep did not correlate with population-level differences in starvation resistance. In contrast, total sleep and percent change in sleep when starved were strongly positively correlated with starvation resistance within the tropical population, but not within the temperate population. Thus, we observe unexpectedly complex relationships between starvation and sleep that vary both within and across populations. These observations falsify the simple hypothesis of a straightforward relationship between sleep and energy conservation. We also tested the hypothesis that starvation is correlated with metabolic phenotypes by investigating stored lipid and carbohydrate levels, and found that stored metabolites partially contributed towards variation starvation resistance. CONCLUSIONS:Our findings demonstrate that the function of sleep under starvation can rapidly evolve on short timescales and raise new questions about the physiological correlates of sleep and the extent to which variation in sleep is shaped by natural selection.
Project description:Sleep deprivation has been shown to negatively impact health outcomes, leading to decreased immune responses, memory loss, increased activity of stress and inflammatory pathways, weight gain, and even behavioral changes. These observations suggest that sleep deprivation substantially interferes with important physiological functions, including metabolic pathways of energy utilization. Many of those phenotypes are correlated with age, suggesting that disrupted sleep may interfere with the aging process. However, little is known about how sleep disruption affects aging and longevity. Here, we investigate this relationship using eight representative fruit fly lines from the Sleep Inbred Panel (SIP). The SIP consists of 39 inbred lines that display extreme short- and long-sleep patterns, and constitutes a crucial Drosophila community resource for investigating the mechanisms of sleep regulation. Our data show that flies with short-sleep periods have ?16% longer life span, as well as reduced aging rate, compared to flies with long-sleep. In contrast, disrupting normal circadian rhythm reduces fly longevity. Short-sleep SIP flies moreover show slight metabolic differences to long-sleep lines, and to flies with disrupted circadian rhythm. These data suggest that the inbred SIP lines engage sleep mechanisms that are distinct from the circadian clock system.
Project description:STUDY OBJECTIVES:Multiple lines of evidence indicate that sleep is important for the developing brain, although little is known about which cellular and molecular pathways are affected. Thus, the aim of this study was to determine whether the early adult life of Drosophila, which is associated with high amounts of sleep and critical periods of brain plasticity, could be used as a model to identify developmental processes that require sleep. SUBJECTS:Wild type Canton-S Drosophila melanogaster. DESIGN; INTERVENTION:Flies were sleep deprived on their first full day of adult life and allowed to recover undisturbed for at least 3 days. The animals were then tested for short-term memory and response-inhibition using aversive phototaxis suppression (APS). Components of dopamine signaling were further evaluated using mRNA profiling, immunohistochemistry, and pharmacological treatments. MEASUREMENTS AND RESULTS:Flies exposed to acute sleep deprivation on their first day of life showed impairments in short-term memory and response inhibition that persisted for at least 6 days. These impairments in adult performance were reversed by dopamine agonists, suggesting that the deficits were a consequence of reduced dopamine signaling. However, sleep deprivation did not impact dopaminergic neurons as measured by their number or by the levels of dopamine, pale (tyrosine hydroxylase), dopadecarboxylase, and the Dopamine transporter. However, dopamine pathways were impacted as measured by increased transcript levels of the dopamine receptors D2R and dDA1. Importantly, blocking signaling through the dDA1 receptor in animals that were sleep deprived during their critical developmental window prevented subsequent adult learning impairments. CONCLUSIONS:These data indicate that sleep plays an important and phylogenetically conserved role in the developing brain.
Project description:Insufficient sleep in individuals appears increasingly common due to the demands of modern work schedules and technology use. Consequently, there is a growing need to understand the interactions between sleep deprivation and memory. The current study determined the effects of acute sleep deprivation on short and long-term associative memory using the marine mollusk Aplysia californica, a relatively simple model system well known for studies of learning and memory.Aplysia were sleep deprived for 9 hours using context changes and tactile stimulation either prior to or after training for the operant learning paradigm, learning that food is inedible (LFI). The effects of sleep deprivation on short-term (STM) and long-term memory (LTM) were assessed.Acute sleep deprivation prior to LFI training impaired the induction of STM and LTM with persistent effects lasting at least 24 h. Sleep deprivation immediately after training blocked the consolidation of LTM. However, sleep deprivation following the period of molecular consolidation did not affect memory recall. Memory impairments were independent of handling-induced stress, as daytime handled control animals demonstrated no memory deficits. Additional training immediately after sleep deprivation failed to rescue the induction of memory, but additional training alleviated the persistent impairment in memory induction when training occurred 24 h following sleep deprivation.Acute sleep deprivation inhibited the induction and consolidation, but not the recall of memory. These behavioral studies establish Aplysia as an effective model system for studying the interactions between sleep and memory formation.