Control of fat storage by a Drosophila PAT domain protein

Curr Biol. 2003 Apr 1;13(7):603-6. doi: 10.1016/s0960-9822(03)00175-1.


In Drosophila, the masses and sheets of adipose tissue that are distributed throughout the fly are collectively called the fat body. Like mammalian adipocytes, insect fat body cells provide the major energy reserve of the animal organism. Both cell types accumulate triacylglycerols (TAG) in intracellular lipid droplets; this finding suggests that the strategy of energy storage as well as the machinery and the control to achieve fat storage might be evolutionarily conserved. Studies addressing the control of lipid-based energy homeostasis of mammals identified proteins of the PAT domain family, such as Perilipin, which reside on lipid droplets. Perilipin knockout mice are lean and resistant to diet-induced obesity. Conversely, Perilipin expression in preadipocyte tissue culture increases lipid storage by reducing the rate of TAG hydrolysis. Factors that mediate corresponding processes in invertebrates are still unknown. We examined the function of Lsd2, one of only two PAT domain-encoding genes in the Drosophila genome. Lsd2 acts in a Perilipin-like manner, suggesting that components regulating homeostasis of lipid-based energy storage at the lipid droplet membrane are evolutionarily conserved.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Blotting, Northern
  • Carrier Proteins
  • Chromosome Mapping
  • Drosophila / genetics*
  • Drosophila / physiology*
  • Drosophila Proteins / genetics
  • Drosophila Proteins / physiology*
  • Fat Body / physiology*
  • Gene Expression Profiling
  • Perilipin-1
  • Phosphoproteins / physiology
  • Phylogeny


  • Carrier Proteins
  • Drosophila Proteins
  • Perilipin-1
  • Phosphoproteins