Supplementary material from "Flightin maintains myofilament lattice organization required for optimal flight power and courtship song quality in <i>Drosophila</i>"

Published on 2017-04-24T13:58:33Z (GMT) by
The indirect flight muscles (IFMs) of <i>Drosophila</i> and other insects with asynchronous flight muscles are characterized by a crystalline myofilament lattice structure. The high-order lattice regularity is considered an adaptation for enhanced power output, but supporting evidence for this claim is lacking. We show that IFMs from transgenic flies expressing flightin with a deletion of its poorly conserved N-terminal domain (<i>fln<sup>ΔN62</sup></i>) have reduced inter-thick filament spacing and a less regular lattice. This resulted in a decrease in flight ability by 33% and in skinned fibre oscillatory power output by 57%, but had no effect on wingbeat frequency or frequency of maximum power output, suggesting that the underlying actomyosin kinetics is not affected and that the flight impairment arises from deficits in force transmission. Moreover, we show that <i>fln<sup>ΔN62</sup></i> males produced an abnormal courtship song characterized by a higher sine song frequency and a pulse song with longer pulses and longer inter-pulse intervals (IPIs), the latter implicated in male reproductive success. When presented with a choice, wild-type females chose control males over mutant males in 92% of the competition events. These results demonstrate that flightin N-terminal domain is required for optimal myofilament lattice regularity and IFM activity, enabling powered flight and courtship song production. As the courtship song is subject to female choice, we propose that the low amino acid sequence conservation of the N-terminal domain reflects its role in fine-tuning species-specific courtship songs.

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Chakravorty, Samya; C. W. Tanner, Bertrand; Foelber, Veronica Lee; Vu, Hien; Rosenthal, Matthew; Ruiz, Teresa; et al. (2017): Supplementary material from "Flightin maintains myofilament lattice organization required for optimal flight power and courtship song quality in Drosophila". The Royal Society. Collection.