Yellow (y) encodes a protein which is closely similar to major royal jelly proteins produced by bees. However, the function of y remains largely unknown. Metabolomic profiling was carried out on third instar Oregon R (OR) and yellow (y) Drosophila melanogaster larvae. Phenylalanine, tyrosine and DOPA were all elevated in y as might be expected since the mutation blocks melanin biosynthesis. The most consistent effects were related to lysine metabolism, with the lysine metabolite saccharopine being much higher in y. In addition, lysine acetate was elevated, and the levels of methyl lysines were lower, in y than in OR.
Keywords: DCE, dopachrome conversion enzyme; DHI, 5,6-dihydroxyindole; DOPA, dihydroxyphenylalanine; Fourier transform mass spectrometry; Histones; Metabolomics; OR, Oregon R; SDH, saccharopine dehydrogenase; Saccharopine; Yellow mutation; dLKR, Drosophila lysine ketoglutarate reductase; y, yellow.