Oviposition preference for and positional avoidance of acetic acid provide a model for competing behavioral drives in Drosophila

Program in Biological Sciences, University of California, San Francisco, CA 94143-2822, USA.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (Impact Factor: 9.67). 07/2009; 106(27):11352-7. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0901419106
Source: PubMed


Selection of appropriate oviposition sites is essential for progeny survival and fitness in generalist insect species, such as Drosophila melanogaster, yet little is known about the mechanisms regulating how environmental conditions and innate adult preferences are evaluated and balanced to yield the final substrate choice for egg-deposition. Female D. melanogaster are attracted to food containing acetic acid (AA) as an oviposition substrate. However, our observations reveal that this egg-laying preference is a complex process, as it directly opposes an otherwise strong, default behavior of positional avoidance for the same food. We show that 2 distinct sensory modalities detect AA. Attraction to AA-containing food for the purpose of egg-laying relies on the gustatory system, while positional repulsion depends primarily on the olfactory system. Similarly, distinct central brain regions are involved in AA attraction and repulsion. Given this unique situation, in which a single environmental stimulus yields 2 opposing behavioral outputs, we propose that the interaction of egg-laying attraction and positional aversion for AA provides a powerful model for studying how organisms balance competing behavioral drives and integrate signals involved in choice-like processes.

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    • "ed , look - ing for the perfect sugar - source could result in great energy costs . It is the adult female fly who carefully analyzes the composi - tion of the medium before choosing an oviposition site and , in doing so , it seems to look for a suitable substrate that will provide with the minimal nutritional requirements for the larvae to grow ( Joseph et al . , 2009 ; Schwartz et al . , 2012 ) . In addition , fructose and sucrose are present in most fruits , suggesting that having only a rapid fructose detection system may be sufficient on most eco - logically relevant substrates . In this sense , larvae generally don ' t need to search for sugars but they can simply start eating and then evaluate "
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    ABSTRACT: Insects encounter a vast repertoire of chemicals in their natural environment, which can signal positive stimuli like the presence of a food source, a potential mate, or a suitable oviposition site as well as negative stimuli such as competitors, predators, or toxic substances reflecting danger. The presence of specialized chemoreceptors like taste and olfactory receptors allows animals to detect chemicals at short and long distances and accordingly, trigger proper behaviors toward these stimuli. Since the first description of olfactory and taste receptors in Drosophila melanogaster 15 years ago, our knowledge on the identity, properties, and function of specific chemoreceptors has increased exponentially. In the last years, multidisciplinary approaches combining genetic tools with electrophysiological techniques, behavioral recording, evolutionary analysis, and chemical ecology studies are shedding light on our understanding on the ecological relevance of specific chemoreceptors for the survival of Drosophila in their natural environment. In this review we discuss the current knowledge on chemoreceptors of both the olfactory and taste systems of the fruitfly. We focus on the relevance of particular receptors for the detection of ecologically relevant cues such as pheromones, food sources, and toxic compounds, and we comment on the behavioral changes that the detection of these chemicals induce in the fly. In particular, we give an updated outlook of the chemical communication displayed during one of the most important behaviors for fly survival, the courtship behavior. Finally, the ecological relevance of specific chemicals can vary depending on the niche occupied by the individual. In that regard, in this review we also highlight the contrast between adult and larval systems and we propose that these differences could reflect distinctive requirements depending on the change of ecological niche occupied by Drosophila along its life cycle.
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    • "Moreover, there is evidence that OSP in D. melanogaster has a genetic basis, although it is also inßuenced by environmental variables (Gripenberg et al. 2010, Miller et al. 2011). Nevertheless, most of the evidence is based on biological assays using isolated odorant compounds (Yang et al. 2008, Joseph et al. 2009, Miller et al. 2011, Abed-Vieillard et al. 2014) and yeasts (Becher et al. 2012, Lebreton et al. 2012, Palanca et al. 2013), but not natural substrates, which may have the advantage of testing the effect of the fruit substrate , the yeast, and the fruitÐyeast interaction (Becher et al. 2012). However, a recent study on D. melanogaster by Dweck et al. (2013) tested a range of 15 fruits in sixÐway choice oviposition experiments. "
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    ABSTRACT: Maternal decisions, like the choice of a site for laying eggs, have important ecological and evolutionary implications. In the present study, we investigated variation, both within- and between- populations in oviposition site preference in a collection of isofemale lines derived from three Drosophila melanogaster Meigen natural populations of western Argentina. In the oviposition preference assay we employed two resources that fruit flies utilize as egg laying sites in nature. Results revealed, i) the distribution of eggs across the two alternative resources offered to the flies deviated from randomness when flies were given the chance to choose between grape and orange, ii) oviposition site preference (OSP) varied within and between populations, and iii) a substantial proportion of OSP variation has a genetic basis as suggested by the significant contribution of variation among lines to total trait variance. Our survey represents an initial step in understanding patterns of natural variation in oviposition preferences for natural resources in D. melanogaster.
    Full-text · Article · Sep 2014 · Annals of the Entomological Society of America
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    • "Although Drosophila spp. are known to be attracted to acetic acid or acetic acid-containing substrates for oviposition purposes (Joseph et al. 2009), ACV may not be the best baiting liquid to use early in the season when spotted wing drosophila population is low (Kleiber et al. 2012). Wild blackberries, Prunus spp., are the dominant species surrounding blueberry plantings in central Florida and may have impacted (increased) spotted wing drosophila population in the Þeld over time. "
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