Evol Ecol Res 4: 1209-1216 (2002)     Full PDF if your library subscribes.

Inbreeding affects Hsp70 expression in two species of Drosophila even at benign temperatures

Torsten Nygaard Kristensen,1,2* Jesper Dahlgaard1,3 and Volker Loeschcke1,4

1Department of Ecology and Genetics, University of Aarhus, Aarhus, Denmark, 2Department of Animal Breeding and Genetics, Danish Institute of Agricultural Sciences, Tjele, Denmark, 3Human MicroArray Centre, Department of Clinical Biochemistry and Genetics, Odense University Hospital, Odense, Denmark and 4Institute for Advanced Study, La Trobe University, Bundoora, Victoria, Australia

Address all correspondence to Torsten Nygaard Kristensen, Department of Ecology and Genetics, University of Aarhus, Building 540, Ny Munkegade, DK-8000 Aarhus C, Denmark.
e-mail: torsten.kristensen@biology.au.dk


Heat shock proteins (Hsps) are molecular chaperones that help organisms to cope with environmental stress. Here we report the effect of temperature on Hsp70 expression in inbred and outbred lines of Drosophila buzzatii and D. melanogaster. For both species, we found significant effects of temperature and inbreeding on Hsp70 expression. In D. buzzatii, inbred larvae expressed more Hsp70 at all temperatures except at very high temperatures close to the physiological limit. In D. melanogaster, the overall pattern was similar to that of D. buzzatii. At benign temperatures, there was a clear trend towards higher Hsp70 expression in inbred than outbred larvae, whereas at higher temperatures, a trend in the opposite direction was observed. The shift from lower to higher expression in outbred larvae with increasing temperatures occurs at a lower temperature in D. melanogaster than in D. buzzatii. The reason for this difference may be greater sensitivity to high stressful temperatures in D. melanogaster. These results provide the first direct experimental evidence that inbreeding influences the expression of Hsp70 even at non-stressful temperatures.

Keywords: Drosophila buzzatii, Drosophila melanogaster, Hsp70, inbreeding, protein conformation, temperature stress.

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