Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Fly person? Get yourself counted!

The Genetics Society of America and other groups advocating for Drosophila research and research funding can benefit from learning up-to-date numbers of Drosophila researchers. How can you help? Get counted. Follow this link to self-identify as a fly person at FlyBase.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

New Gal4 drivers for follicle cell studies

Hartman TR, Ventresca EM, Hopkins A, Zinshteyn D, Singh T, O'Brien JA, Neubert BC, Hartman MG, Schofield HK, Stavrides KP, Talbot DE, Riggs DJ, Pritchard C, O'Reilly AM. Novel Tools for Genetic Manipulation of Follicle Stem Cells in the Drosophila Ovary Reveal an Integrin-Dependent Transition from Quiescence to Proliferation. Genetics. 2015 Feb 12. PMID: 25680813.

From the abstract: "... Here, we present novel methods for marking and genetically altering epithelial Follicle Stem Cells (FSCs) within the Drosophila ovary. ..."

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Primary cell screen performed at DRSC explores autophagy in muscles--relevance to glycogen storage disorders

Zirin J, Nieuwenhuis J, Samsonova A, Tao R, Perrimon N. Regulators of autophagosome formation in Drosophila muscles. PLoS Genet. 2015 Feb 18;11(2):e1005006. PMID: 25692684.

From the abstract: "... We used a primary myocyte cell culture system to assay the role of putative autophagy regulators in the specific context of skeletal muscle. By treating the cultures with rapamycin (Rap) and chloroquine (CQ) we induced an autophagic response, fully suppressible by knockdown of core ATG genes. We screened D. melanogaster orthologs of a previously reported mammalian autophagy protein-protein interaction network, identifying several proteins required for autophagosome formation in muscle cells ... The screen also highlighted the critical roles of the proteasome and glycogen metabolism in regulating autophagy. ... In addition, analyses of glycogen metabolic genes in both primary cultured and larval muscles indicated that glycogen storage enhances the autophagic response to starvation, an important insight given the link between glycogen storage disorders, autophagy, and muscle function."

The DRSC autophagy library used in the screen is one of several focused libraries available from the Drosophila RNAi Screening Center for on-site or off-site screens.

Genome-wide in vivo RNAi and data integration featured in study on intestinal stem cell regulation

Zeng X, Han L, Singh SR, Liu H, Neumüller RA, Yan D, Hu Y, Liu Y, Liu W, Lin X, Hou SX. Genome-wide RNAi Screen Identifies Networks Involved in Intestinal Stem Cell Regulation in Drosophila. Cell Rep. 2015 Feb 17. pii: S2211-1247(15)00076-5. PMID: 25704823.

From the abstract: "... To comprehensively identify genes and pathways that regulate ISC fates, we performed a genome-wide transgenic RNAi screen in adult Drosophila intestine and identified 405 genes that regulate ISC maintenance and lineage-specific differentiation. By integrating these genes into publicly available interaction databases, we further developed functional networks that regulate ..."

Monday, February 23, 2015

Review of model organism RNAi screen contributions to understanding host-pathogen interactions

Abnave P, Conti F, Torre C, Ghigo E. What RNAi screens in model organisms revealed about microbicidal response in mammals? Front Cell Infect Microbiol. 2015 Jan 12;4:184. PMID: 25629007; PMCID: PMC4290690.

From the abstract: "The strategies evolved by pathogens to infect hosts and the mechanisms used by the host to eliminate intruders are highly complex. ... The aim of this mini-review is to highlight and describe recent breakthroughs in the field of host-pathogen interactions using RNAi screens of model organisms. We will focus specifically on the model organisms Drosophila melanogaster, Caenorhabditis elegans, and Danio rerio. Moreover, a recent study examining the immune system of planarian will be discussed."

Sleep screens--methods review includes discussion of in vivo RNAi

Axelrod S, Saez L, Young MW. Studying circadian rhythm and sleep using genetic screens in Drosophila. Methods Enzymol. 2015;551:3-27. PMID: 25662449.

From the abstract: "... In this chapter, we briefly recall the history of circadian rhythm and sleep screens and then ... describe techniques ... for ... screening in the field.  ... comparing the newer approaches of transgenic RNA interference (RNAi) to classical forms of mutagenesis ... We discuss the different screening approaches in light of the literature and published and unpublished sleep and rhythm screens utilizing ethyl methanesulfonate mutagenesis and transgenic RNAi from our lab."

Friday, February 13, 2015

DRSC website re-vamp coming soon

Here's a view of the revised DRSC home page, soon to be launched at
Our primary goals were to facilitate improved navigation of online tools and to improve compatibility with hand-held devices. Feedback is welcome, as always!
our modestly re-vamped DRSC home page -- improved navigation, more mobile device-friendly

close-up of the research workflow-based view of our online tools. text = links (on the real version--not here!)