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Parker, G.A., Kohn, N., Spirina, A., McMillen, A., Huang, W., Mackay, T.F.C. (2020). Genetic Basis of Increased Lifespan and Postponed Senescence in Drosophila melanogaster.  G3 (Bethesda) 10(3): 1087--1098.
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Research paper

Limited lifespan and senescence are near-universal phenomena. These quantitative traits exhibit variation in natural populations due to the segregation of many interacting loci and from environmental effects. Due to the complexity of the genetic control of lifespan and senescence, our understanding of the genetic basis of variation in these traits is incomplete. Here, we analyzed the pattern of genetic divergence between long-lived (O) Drosophila melanogaster lines selected for postponed reproductive senescence and unselected control (B) lines. We quantified the productivity of the O and B lines and found that reproductive senescence is maternally controlled. We therefore chose 57 candidate genes that are expressed in ovaries, 49 of which have human orthologs, and assessed the effects of RNA interference in ovaries and accessary glands on lifespan and reproduction. All but one candidate gene affected at least one life history trait in one sex or productivity week. In addition, 23 genes had antagonistic pleiotropic effects on lifespan and productivity. Identifying evolutionarily conserved genes affecting increased lifespan and delayed reproductive senescence is the first step toward understanding the evolutionary forces that maintain segregating variation at these loci in nature and may provide potential targets for therapeutic intervention to delay senescence while increasing lifespan.

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PMC7056975 (PMC) (EuropePMC)
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    G3 (Bethesda)
    G3 : genes - genomes - genetics
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