5-Hydroxytryptamine receptor 1A (5-HT1A) is required for Drosophila melanogaster host defense against Aspergillus fumigatus infection and the mycotoxins it secrets


R Yan1, AC Chen1*, D Ferrandon1,2

Author address:

1Sino-French Hoffmann Institute, Guangzhou Medical University, Guanghzou, China

2UPR 9022 du CNRS, Universite de Strasbourg, Strasbourg, France

Full conference title:

10th Advances Against Aspergillosis and Mucormycosis

Date: 2 February 2022



Aspergillus fumigatus (A. fumigatus) is a mammalian opportunistic pathogen that is ubiquitous in the environment, which float in the air and can be deeply inhaled into human lungs. They normally are harmless to humans, however, their spores are deadly if they enter the lungs of the immunocompromised patients, which lead to invasive pulmonary aspergillosis with high morbidity and mortality rates. So, it is useful and helpful to gain more insights into the mechanism of host defense against this fungal infection.



A genome-wide large-scale RNA interference (RNAi) screening has been performed to identify the genes involved in the Drosophila host defense against A. fumigatus infection. A given gene expression was knocked down through RNA interference at the adult stage, and then about 250 conidia of A. fumigatus was injected into the thorax of a fly. The survival rates of these flies were recorded each day and compared with the negative and positive controls. Thus, the library of numerous RNAi lines has been screened at random, thereby minimizing any bias.



178 fly lines exhibit relatively high susceptibility to A. fumigatus infection from 6469 RNAi fly lines, of which 5-HT1A RNAi line and mutant fly are specifically susceptible to A. fumigatus infection and two secondary metabolites, restrictocin and bromocriptine. Moreover, tissue specificity analyses show that 5-HT1A expression in glial cells of the brain could play an essential role in the host defense against this fungal infection.



5-HT1A, not other 5-HT receptors, is specifically required for the host defense against A. fumigatus infection and restrictocin and bromocriptine injection through resilience in the Drosophila model, which may not be involved in the cellular immune response and melanization.

Abstract Number: 74

Conference Year: 2022

Link to conference website: https://aaam2022.org/


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