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Nash, T.R., Chow, E.S., Law, A.D., Fu, S.D., Fuszara, E., Bilska, A., Bebas, P., Kretzschmar, D., Giebultowicz, J.M. (2019). Daily blue-light exposure shortens lifespan and causes brain neurodegeneration in Drosophila.  NPJ Aging Mech. Dis. 5(): 8.
FlyBase ID
FBrf0243805
Publication Type
Research paper
Abstract

Light is necessary for life, but prolonged exposure to artificial light is a matter of increasing health concern. Humans are exposed to increased amounts of light in the blue spectrum produced by light-emitting diodes (LEDs), which can interfere with normal sleep cycles. The LED technologies are relatively new; therefore, the long-term effects of exposure to blue light across the lifespan are not understood. We investigated the effects of light in the model organism, Drosophila melanogaster, and determined that flies maintained in daily cycles of 12-h blue LED and 12-h darkness had significantly reduced longevity compared with flies maintained in constant darkness or in white light with blue wavelengths blocked. Exposure of adult flies to 12 h of blue light per day accelerated aging phenotypes causing damage to retinal cells, brain neurodegeneration, and impaired locomotion. We report that brain damage and locomotor impairments do not depend on the degeneration in the retina, as these phenotypes were evident under blue light in flies with genetically ablated eyes. Blue light induces expression of stress-responsive genes in old flies but not in young, suggesting that cumulative light exposure acts as a stressor during aging. We also determined that several known blue-light-sensitive proteins are not acting in pathways mediating detrimental light effects. Our study reveals the unexpected effects of blue light on fly brain and establishes Drosophila as a model in which to investigate long-term effects of blue light at the cellular and organismal level.

PubMed ID
PubMed Central ID
PMC6797782 (PMC) (EuropePMC)
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    Language of Publication
    English
    Additional Languages of Abstract
    Parent Publication
    Publication Type
    Journal
    Abbreviation
    NPJ Aging Mech. Dis.
    Title
    NPJ aging and mechanisms of disease
    ISBN/ISSN
    2056-3973
    Data From Reference