Phenotypic coupling of sleep and starvation resistance evolves in D. melanogaster.
ABSTRACT: 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:Starvation reduces sleep in various animal species including humans and fruit flies. Immediate hunger and the following insufficient nutritional status resulting from starvation may affect sleep and arousal differently. In order to clarify the mechanism underlying the relationship between diet and sleep, we analysed the sleep behaviour of Drosophila melanogaster that were either starved or fed with different types of sugars. Starved flies showed longer activity bouts, short sleep bouts and a decreased arousal threshold. Non-nutritive sweeteners such as sucralose and arabinose, which are sweet but not nutritive, induced sleep in starved flies, but sleep bout length and the arousal threshold was short and decreased, respectively. On the other hand, sorbitol, which is not sweet but nutritive, did not induce sleep, but slightly increased the lowered arousal threshold. Activation of sweetness receptor expressing neurons induced sleep in starved flies. These results suggest that sweetness alone is sufficient to induce sleep in starved flies and that the nutritional status affects sleep homeostasis by decreasing the arousal threshold, which resulted in short sleep bouts in Drosophila.
Project description:Feeding and sleep are highly conserved, interconnected behaviors essential for survival. Starvation has been shown to potently suppress sleep across species; however, whether satiety promotes sleep is still unclear. Here we use the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, as a model organism to address the interaction between feeding and sleep. We first monitored the sleep of flies that had been starved for 24 h and found that sleep amount increased in the first 4 h after flies were given food. Increased sleep after starvation was due to an increase in sleep bout number and average sleep bout length. Mutants of translin or adipokinetic hormone, which fail to suppress sleep during starvation, still exhibited a sleep increase after starvation, suggesting that sleep increase after starvation is not a consequence of sleep loss during starvation. We also found that feeding activity and food consumption were higher in the first 10-30 min after starvation. Restricting food consumption in starved flies to 30 min was sufficient to increase sleep for 1 h. Although flies ingested a comparable amount of food at differing sucrose concentrations, sleep increase after starvation on a lower sucrose concentration was undetectable. Taken together, our results suggest that increased food intake after starvation enhances sleep and reveals a novel relationship between feeding and sleep.
Project description:Neural systems controlling the vital functions of sleep and feeding in mammals are tightly interconnected: sleep deprivation promotes feeding, whereas starvation suppresses sleep. Here we show that starvation in Drosophila potently suppresses sleep, suggesting that these two homeostatically regulated behaviors are also integrated in flies. The sleep-suppressing effect of starvation is independent of the mushroom bodies, a previously identified sleep locus in the fly brain, and therefore is regulated by distinct neural circuitry. The circadian clock genes Clock (Clk) and cycle (cyc) are critical for proper sleep suppression during starvation. However, the sleep suppression is independent of light cues and of circadian rhythms as shown by the fact that starved period mutants sleep like wild-type flies. By selectively targeting subpopulations of Clk-expressing neurons, we localize the observed sleep phenotype to the dorsally located circadian neurons. These findings show that Clk and cyc act during starvation to modulate the conflict of whether flies sleep or search for food.
Project description: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:Large genetic variations in starvation tolerance in animals indicate that there are multiple strategies to cope with low-nutrient conditions. Fruit flies (Drosophila melanogaster) typically respond to starvation by suppressing sleep and enhancing locomotor activity presumably to search for food. However, we hypothesized that in a natural population, there are costs and benefits to sleep suppression under low-nutrient conditions and that conserving energy through sleep could be a better strategy depending on food availability. In this study, we quantified the variation in sleep-related traits in 21 wild-derived inbred lines from Katsunuma, Japan, under fed and starved conditions and analysed the relationship between those traits and starvation tolerance. Although most of the lines responded to starvation by suppressing the total time in sleep, there were indeed two lines that responded by significantly increasing the sleep-bout durations and thus not reducing the total time in sleep. These genotypes survived longer in acute starvation conditions compared to genotypes that responded by the immediate suppression of sleep, which could be due to the reduced metabolic rate during the long uninterrupted sleep bouts. The coexistence of the enhanced foraging and resting strategies upon starvation within a single population is consistent with the presence of a behavioural trade-off between food search and energy conservation due to unpredictable food availability in nature. These results provide insights into the evolutionary mechanisms that contribute to the maintenance of genetic variations underlying environmental stress resistance.
Project description:Sleep is vital for survival. Yet under environmentally challenging conditions, such as starvation, animals suppress their need for sleep. Interestingly, starvation-induced sleep loss does not evoke a subsequent sleep rebound. Little is known about how starvation-induced sleep deprivation differs from other types of sleep loss, or why some sleep functions become dispensable during starvation. Here, we demonstrate that down-regulation of the secreted cytokine unpaired 2 (upd2) in Drosophila flies may mimic a starved-like state. We used a genetic knockdown strategy to investigate the consequences of upd2 on visual attention and sleep in otherwise well-fed flies, thereby sidestepping the negative side effects of undernourishment. We find that knockdown of upd2 in the fat body (FB) is sufficient to suppress sleep and promote feeding-related behaviors while also improving selective visual attention. Furthermore, we show that this peripheral signal is integrated in the fly brain via insulin-expressing cells. Together, these findings identify a role for peripheral tissue-to-brain interactions in the simultaneous regulation of sleep quality and attention, to potentially promote adaptive behaviors necessary for survival in hungry animals.
Project description:Dysregulation of sleep is associated with metabolic diseases, and metabolic rate (MR) is acutely regulated by sleep-wake behavior. In humans and rodent models, sleep loss is associated with obesity, reduced metabolic rate, and negative energy balance, yet little is known about the neural mechanisms governing interactions between sleep and metabolism.We have developed a system to simultaneously measure sleep and MR in individual Drosophila, allowing for interrogation of neural systems governing interactions between sleep and metabolic rate.Like mammals, MR in flies is reduced during sleep and increased during sleep deprivation suggesting sleep-dependent regulation of MR is conserved across phyla. The reduction of MR during sleep is not simply a consequence of inactivity because MR is reduced ~30 minutes following the onset of sleep, raising the possibility that CO2 production provides a metric to distinguish different sleep states in the fruit fly. To examine the relationship between sleep and metabolism, we determined basal and sleep-dependent changes in MR is reduced in starved flies, suggesting that starvation inhibits normal sleep-associated effects on metabolic rate. Further, translin mutant flies that fail to suppress sleep during starvation demonstrate a lower basal metabolic rate, but this rate was further reduced in response to starvation, revealing that regulation of starvation-induced changes in MR and sleep duration are genetically distinct.Therefore, this system provides the unique ability to simultaneously measure sleep and oxidative metabolism, providing novel insight into the physiological changes associated with sleep and wakefulness in the fruit fly.
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: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. To identify the genes responsible for the protective effects of starvation we conducted transcription profiling of sleep deprived flies that accrue sleep debt compared to starved siblings that do not. Genes involved in lipid metabolism were highly enriched in our dataset of 84 differentially regulated transcripts. Follow up genetic studies established that 6 genes involved in lipid metabolism strongly influence sleep homeostasis. Two of these genes, brummer (bmm) and Lipid storage droplet 2 (Lsd2), are in the same lipolysis pathway but exert antagonistic effects on lipid storage. bmm mutant flies have excess fat stores and 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. Overall design: Two-condition experiments: sleep deprived vs starved. RNA from 8 biological replicates for each condition was pooled in groups of 2 to create 4 samples. Each of the 4 samples is run in duplicate with untreated circadian matched controls.
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. To identify the genes responsible for the protective effects of starvation we conducted transcription profiling of sleep deprived flies that accrue sleep debt compared to starved siblings that do not. Genes involved in lipid metabolism were highly enriched in our dataset of 84 differentially regulated transcripts. Follow up genetic studies established that 6 genes involved in lipid metabolism strongly influence sleep homeostasis. Two of these genes, brummer (bmm) and Lipid storage droplet 2 (Lsd2), are in the same lipolysis pathway but exert antagonistic effects on lipid storage. bmm mutant flies have excess fat stores and 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. Two-condition experiments: sleep deprived vs starved. RNA from 8 biological replicates for each condition was pooled in groups of 2 to create 4 samples. Each of the 4 samples is run in duplicate with untreated circadian matched controls.