Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Starvation induces Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) like symptoms in Drosophila melanogaster
by Kilpatrick, Kaylon Ann, M.S., Mississippi College, 2016, 61; 10128977
Abstract (Summary)

Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) is a metabolic and endocrine disorder that is the most common cause of infertility. PCOS can manifest itself as a long and short term disability and is characterized by insulin resistance (IR), hyperandrogenism, anovulation, hyperinsulinaemia and polycystic ovaries. Our lack of understanding of this disorder and its long term effects has complicated the treatment of the disorder; yet, it is clear that PCOS involves the intricate interaction between genetics, environments and behaviors. To study this disease, scientists have used various animal models. Since the Drosophila model for PCOS has only been postulated,in this work, we determined whether starvation along with the addition of steroid hormones would induce a PCOS-like disorder in D. melanogaster after 24 hour exposure.

In women with PCOS, testosterone levels and the expression of the androgen receptor are elevated. In fruit flies, ecdysone (E) and its “active” form, 20-hydroxyecdysone (20E), are homologous to the human testosterone and 20-hydroxytestosterone, respectively. This hormone is required for circadian cycles, molting, and maturation in insects. More specifically, this hormone is also located in ovarian tissue and aids in follicular development. The receptor for ecdysone is the ecdysone receptor (EcR). In this work, we examined the expression of the ecdysone receptor (EcR) upon starvation for up to 24 hours by immunofluorescence microcopy. Using qRT-PCR, we determined the levels of expression of genes usually associated with inflammation. Ovarian dysfunction was examined by measuring the fecundity of the females. Starvation increases the expression of the EcR and pro-inflammatory gene expression and decreases fecundity, suggesting that Drosophila melanogaster is a potentially useful model organism in the study of PCOS.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Carmicle, Stephanie
Commitee: Norcross, Erin, Reagan, Jerry
School: Mississippi College
Department: Biological Sciences
School Location: United States -- Mississippi
Source: MAI 55/05M(E), Masters Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: Biology, Developmental biology
Keywords: Drosophila, PCOS, Starvation
Publication Number: 10128977
ISBN: 9781339869551
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