Characterization of a cdc14 null allele in Drosophila melanogaster

Biol Open. 2018 Jul 9;7(7):bio035394. doi: 10.1242/bio.035394.


Cdc14 is an evolutionarily conserved serine/threonine phosphatase. Originally identified in Saccharomyces cerevisiae as a cell cycle regulator, its role in other eukaryotic organisms remains unclear. In Drosophila melanogaster, Cdc14 is encoded by a single gene, thus facilitating its study. We found that Cdc14 expression is highest in the testis of adult flies and that cdc14 null flies are viable. cdc14 null female and male flies do not display altered fertility. cdc14 null males, however, exhibit decreased sperm competitiveness. Previous studies have shown that Cdc14 plays a role in ciliogenesis during zebrafish development. In Drosophila, sensory neurons are ciliated. We found that the Drosophila cdc14 null mutants have defects in chemosensation and mechanosensation as indicated by decreased avoidance of repellant substances and decreased response to touch. In addition, we show that cdc14 null mutants have defects in lipid metabolism and resistance to starvation. These studies highlight the diversity of Cdc14 function in eukaryotes despite its structural conservation.

Keywords: Cdc14; Chemosensation; Drosophila; Mechanosensation; Sensilla; Sperm.