Renal neuroendocrine control of desiccation and cold tolerance by Drosophila suzukii

Pest Manag Sci. 2018 Apr;74(4):800-810. doi: 10.1002/ps.4663. Epub 2017 Aug 29.


Background: Neuropeptides are central to the regulation of physiological and behavioural processes in insects, directly impacting cold and desiccation survival. However, little is known about the control mechanisms governing these responses in Drosophila suzukii. The close phylogenetic relationship of D. suzukii with Drosophila melanogaster allows, through genomic and functional studies, an insight into the mechanisms directing stress tolerance in D. suzukii.

Results: Capability (Capa), leucokinin (LK), diuretic hormone 44 (DH44 ) and DH31 neuropeptides demonstrated a high level of conservation between D. suzukii and D. melanogaster with respect to peptide sequences, neuronal expression, receptor localisation, and diuretic function in the Malpighian tubules. Despite D. suzukii's ability to populate cold environments, it proved sensitive to both cold and desiccation. Furthermore, in D. suzukii, Capa acts as a desiccation- and cold stress-responsive gene, while DH44 gene expression is increased only after desiccation exposure, and the LK gene after nonlethal cold stress recovery.

Conclusion: This study provides a comparative investigation into stress tolerance mediation by neuroendocrine signalling in two Drosophila species, providing evidence that similar signalling pathways control fluid secretion in the Malpighian tubules. Identifying processes governing specific environmental stresses affecting D. suzukii could lead to the development of targeted integrated management strategies to control insect pest populations. © 2017 The Authors. Pest Management Science published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of Society of Chemical Industry.

Keywords: Drosophila; Malpighian tubules; cold tolerance; desiccation; neuropeptides.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cold Temperature*
  • Desiccation*
  • Drosophila / genetics
  • Drosophila / physiology*
  • Drosophila Proteins / genetics*
  • Drosophila Proteins / metabolism
  • Malpighian Tubules / physiopathology*
  • Neurons / physiology
  • Neuropeptides / genetics*
  • Neuropeptides / metabolism
  • Signal Transduction / genetics
  • Thermotolerance


  • Drosophila Proteins
  • Neuropeptides