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Baumbach, J., Xu, Y., Hehlert, P., Kühnlein, R.P. (2014). Gαq, Gγ1 and Plc21C Control Drosophila Body Fat Storage.  J. Genet. Genomics 41(5): 283--292.
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Adaptive mobilization of body fat is essential for energy homeostasis in animals. In insects, the adipokinetic hormone (Akh) systemically controls body fat mobilization. Biochemical evidence supports that Akh signals via a G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) called Akh receptor (AkhR) using cyclic-AMP (cAMP) and Ca(2+) second messengers to induce storage lipid release from fat body cells. Recently, we provided genetic evidence that the intracellular calcium (iCa(2+)) level in fat storage cells controls adiposity in the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster. However, little is known about the genes, which mediate Akh signalling downstream of the AkhR to regulate changes in iCa(2+). Here, we used thermogenetics to provide in vivo evidence that the GPCR signal transducers G protein α q subunit (Gαq), G protein γ1 (Gγ1) and Phospholipase C at 21C (Plc21C) control cellular and organismal fat storage in Drosophila. Transgenic modulation of Gαq, Gγ1 and Plc21C affected the iCa(2+) of fat body cells and the expression profile of the lipid metabolism effector genes midway and brummer, which results in severely obese or lean flies. Moreover, functional impairment of Gαq, Gγ1 and Plc21C antagonised Akh-induced fat depletion. This study characterizes Gαq, Gγ1 and Plc21C as anti-obesity genes and supports the model that Akh employs the Gαq/Gγ1/Plc21C module of iCa(2+) control to regulate lipid mobilization in adult Drosophila.

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    J. Genet. Genomics
    Journal of Genetics and Genomics [Yi chuan xue bao]
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