Positive geotactic behaviors induced by geomagnetic field in Drosophila
- Bae, Ji-Eun; Bang, Sunhoe; Min, Soohong; Lee, Sang-Hyup; Kwon, Soon-Hwan; Lee, Youngseok; Lee, Yong-Ho; Chung, Jongkyeong; Chae, Kwon-Seok
- Issue Date
- BioMed Central
- Molecular Brain, 9(1):55
- Cryptochrome; Drosophila melanogaster; Geomagnetic field; Gravity; Johnston’s organ; Negative geotaxis; Positive geotaxis; Vertical movement
Appropriate vertical movement is critical for the survival of flying animals. Although negative geotaxis (moving away from Earth) driven by gravity has been extensively studied, much less is understood concerning a static regulatory mechanism for inducing positive geotaxis (moving toward Earth).
Using Drosophila melanogaster as a model organism, we showed that geomagnetic field (GMF) induces positive geotaxis and antagonizes negative gravitaxis. Remarkably, GMF acts as a sensory cue for an appetite-driven associative learning behavior through the GMF-induced positive geotaxis. This GMF-induced positive geotaxis requires the three geotaxis genes, such as cry, pyx and pdf, and the corresponding neurons residing in Johnstons organ of the flys antennae.
These findings provide a novel concept with the neurogenetic basis on the regulation of vertical movement by GMF in the flying animals.