Dietary ethanol stimulates the activity of phosphatidylcholine-specific phospholipase D and the formation of phosphatidylethanol in Drosophila melanogaster larvae

Insect Biochem Mol Biol. 1993 Sep;23(6):749-55. doi: 10.1016/0965-1748(93)90049-x.


When administered in the diet to third instar Drosophila melanogaster larvae, short chain primary alcohols reduce phosphatidylcholine (PC) levels. The ethanol-induced reductions in larval PC may be in part due to an increase in the activity of PC-specific phospholipase D (PC-specific PLD, EC PC-specific PLD not only hydrolyzes PC, but it also apparently catalyzes the formation of phosphatidylethanol. PC-specific PLD activity was also stimulated by 200 mM ethanol, methanol, isopropanol, n-butanol, and n-propanol. In vitro studies indicated that Drosophila PC-specific PLD activities were enhanced by submicromolar concentrations of Ca2+ and by GTP-gamma S. In vivo studies utilizing [14C]lyso-palmitoyl phosphatidylcholine indicated that dietary ethanol promoted the flux of label into triacylglycerol, 1,2 diacylglycerol, and fatty acid ethyl esters, while the label in PC decreased.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Calcium / pharmacology
  • Drosophila melanogaster / drug effects*
  • Drosophila melanogaster / metabolism
  • Ethanol / pharmacology*
  • Glycerophospholipids*
  • Guanosine 5'-O-(3-Thiotriphosphate) / pharmacology
  • Hydrolysis
  • Larva
  • Lipid Metabolism
  • Phosphatidic Acids / biosynthesis
  • Phosphatidylcholines / metabolism*
  • Phospholipase D / drug effects*
  • Phospholipase D / metabolism
  • Type C Phospholipases / drug effects


  • Glycerophospholipids
  • Phosphatidic Acids
  • Phosphatidylcholines
  • phosphatidylethanol
  • Guanosine 5'-O-(3-Thiotriphosphate)
  • Ethanol
  • Type C Phospholipases
  • Phospholipase D
  • Calcium