Egg-laying demand induces aversion of UV light in Drosophila females.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Drosophila melanogaster females are highly selective about the chemosensory quality of their egg-laying sites, an important trait that promotes the survival and fitness of their offspring. How egg-laying females respond to UV light is not known, however. UV is a well-documented phototactic cue for adult Drosophila, but it is an aversive cue for larvae. Here, we show that female flies exhibit UV aversion in response to their egg-laying demand. First, females exhibit egg-laying aversion of UV: they prefer to lay eggs on dark sites when choosing between UV-illuminated and dark sites. Second, they also exhibit movement aversion of UV: positional tracking of single females suggests that egg-laying demand increases their tendency to turn away from UV. Genetic manipulations of the retina suggest that egg-laying and movement aversion of UV are both mediated by the inner (R7) and not the outer (R1-R6) photoreceptors. Finally, we show that the Dm8 amacrine neurons, a synaptic target of R7 photoreceptors and a mediator of UV spectral preference, are dispensable for egg-laying aversion but essential for movement aversion of UV. This study suggests that egg-laying demand can temporarily convert UV into an aversive cue for female Drosophila and that R7 photoreceptors recruit different downstream targets to control different egg-laying-induced behavioral modifications.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Zhu, EY; Guntur, AR; He, R; Stern, U; Yang, C-H

Published Date

  • December 1, 2014

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 24 / 23

Start / End Page

  • 2797 - 2804

PubMed ID

  • 25455037

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC4255361

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1879-0445

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.cub.2014.09.076


  • eng

Conference Location

  • England