Transportin-serine/arginine-rich (Tnpo-SR) proteins are necessary for proper lipid storage in the Drosophila fat body

Conner Nagle, Jasleen K. Bhogal, Alexis A. Nagengast, Justin R. DiAngelo

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2 Scopus citations


After a meal, excess nutrients are stored within adipose tissue as triglycerides in structures called lipid droplets. Previous genome-wide RNAi screens have identified that mRNA splicing factor genes are required for normal lipid droplet formation in Drosophila cells. We have previously shown that mRNA splicing factors called serine/arginine-rich (SR) proteins are important for triglyceride storage in the Drosophila fat body. SR proteins shuttle in and out of the nucleus with the help of proteins called Transportins (Tnpo-SR); however, whether this transport is important for SR protein-mediated regulation of lipid storage is unknown. The purpose of this study is to characterize the role of Tnpo-SR proteins in regulating lipid storage in the Drosophila fat body. Decreasing Tnpo-SR in the adult fat body resulted in an increase in triglyceride storage and consistent with this phenotype, Tnpo-SR-RNAi flies also have increased starvation resistance. In addition, the lipid accumulation in Tnpo-SR-RNAi flies is the result of increased triglyceride stored in each fat body cell and not due to increased food consumption. Interestingly, the splicing of CPT1, an enzyme important for the β-oxidation of fatty acids, is altered in Tnpo-SR-RNAi fat bodies. The isoform that produces the less catalytically active form of CPT1 accumulates in fat bodies where Tnpo-SR levels are decreased, suggesting a decrease in lipid breakdown, potentially causing the excess triglyceride storage observed in these flies. Together, these data suggest that the transport of splicing proteins in and out of the nucleus is important for proper triglyceride storage in the Drosophila fat body.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-5
Number of pages5
JournalBiochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
StatePublished - Mar 12 2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biophysics
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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