Isotope Label-Aided Mass Spectrometry Reveals the Influence of Environmental Factors on Metabolism in Single Eggs of Fruit Fly

Te Wei Tseng, June Tai Wu, Yu-Chie Chen*, Pawel L. Urban

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations

Abstract

In order to investigate the influence of light/dark cycle on the biosynthesis of metabolites during oogenesis, here we demonstrate a simple experimental protocol which combines in-vivo isotopic labeling of primary metabolites with mass spectrometric analysis of single eggs of fruit fly (Drosophila melanogaster). First, fruit flies were adapted to light/dark cycle using artificial white light. Second, female flies were incubated with an isotopically labeled sugar (13C6-glucose) for 12 h - either during the circadian day or the circadian night, at light or at dark. Third, eggs were obtained from the incubated female flies, and analyzed individually by matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization (MALDI) mass spectrometry (MS): this yielded information about the extent of labeling with carbon-13. Since the incorporation of carbon-13 to uridine diphosphate glucose (UDP-glucose) in fruit fly eggs is very fast, the labeling of this metabolite was used as an indicator of the biosynthesis of metabolites flies/eggs during 12-h periods, which correspond to circadian day or circadian night. The results reveal that once the flies adapted to the 12-h-light/12-h-dark cycle, the incorporation of carbon-13 to UDP-glucose present in fruit fly eggs was not markedly altered by an acute perturbation to this cycle. This effect may be due to a relationship between biosynthesis of primary metabolites in developing eggs and an alteration to the intake of the labeled substrate - possibly related to the change of the feeding habit. Overall, the study shows the possibility of using MALDI-MS in conjunction with isotopic labeling of small metazoans to unravel the influence of environmental cues on primary metabolism.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere50258
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume7
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - 21 Nov 2012

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