2018 Student Research Conference:
31st Annual Student Research Conference

Cyclophillin 1 and its effect on larval crawling in Drosophila melanogaster

James K. Harmon*, Stuart E. Willett, Kelly A. Lovera, and Jose A. Viteri
Dr. Brett A. Berke, Faculty Mentor

Our experiments using the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, indicate that mutations in the Cyclophilin 1 gene increase the amount of head swinging (searching) behavior during larval crawling. In one of the mutants, we reduced the effects of genetic background by recombining its genome with the control strain but retained the transposon mutation. This mutant continued to show abnormal searching behavior. To prove that Cyclophilin 1 mutations increased searching behavior, we used the GAL4-UAS system to express an RNAi transgene to knock down Cyclophilin 1 in all cells. The RNAi knockdown phenocopied the mutant alleles and showed increased searching behavior. A BLAST analysis shows that the entire Cyclophilin 1 protein is 84% identical to Cyclophilin D in mice, which mediates the opening of the mitochondrial permeability transition pore to stimulate apoptosis. Future analyses will examine whether Cyclophilin 1 is indeed a mitochondrial protein.


Keywords: Drosophila, protein folding, animal behavior


Presentation Type: Poster

Session: 3-8
Location: GEO - SUB
Time: 3:30

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