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Characterization of homologs of peroxisome assembly genes in the fruitfly Drosophila melanogaster

  • Author / Creator
    Virk, Maninder
  • Peroxisomes are single-membrane-bound ubiquitous organelles required for several important metabolic pathways like lipid metabolism and peroxide detoxification. They are indispensable for normal human development, because lack of metabolically functional peroxisomes causes fatal peroxisome biogenesis disorders (PBDs). In this study, 14 putative Drosophila melanogaster (D. melanogaster) homologs of known PEX genes were identified using a dsRNA interference screen in cultured D. melanogaster S2 cells. In humans, mutations of the PEX1 gene are the most common cause of the PBD, Zellweger syndrome. Further, detailed phenotypic characterization of the D. melanogaster PEX1 homolog (DmelPex1) showed that it is required for complete larval development. DmelPex1 mutant larvae exhibit abnormalities similar to those observed in Zellweger syndrome patients, including developmental delay, poor feeding, structural abnormalities in the peripheral and central nervous systems, and premature death. Overall, this study supports the use of D. melanogaster as an invaluable model for the PBDs.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    2011-06
  • Type of Item
    Thesis
  • Degree
    Master of Science
  • DOI
    https://doi.org/10.7939/R33Q5X
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
  • Language
    English
  • Institution
    University of Alberta
  • Degree level
    Master's
  • Department
    • Department of Cell Biology
  • Supervisor / co-supervisor and their department(s)
    • Rachubinski, Richard (Cell Biology)
  • Examining committee members and their departments
    • Rachubinski, Richard (Cell Biology)
    • Locke, John (Biological Sciences)
    • Simmonds, Andrew (Cell Biology)