Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

Degree

Master of Science

Program

Biology

Collaborative Specialization

Developmental Biology

Supervisor

Kramer, Jamie M.

Abstract

Gene transcription required for long-term memory requires the modification of histones. However, there are still many uncertainties about the identity and spatial expression of genes regulated by histone modifications during memory related processes. In this project I examined the role of Drosophila melanogaster methyltransferases Set1 and trx in courtship memory. Genetic knockdown of Set1 and trx in the mushroom body (MB) revealed that Set1 was necessary for short- and long-term memory, while trx was only required for long-term memory. Transcriptional profiling of MBs following trx-knockdown revealed expression changes in MB-enriched genes and genes involved in RNA processing. Among the MB-enriched genes altered in trx-knockdown, Ldh exhibited dramatically reduced expression relative to control flies. Preliminary tests showed that Ldh-knockdown resulted in reduced courtship memory. Therefore, Ldh is likely a downstream effector of trx-regulated memory function. The results of this study provide novel insight into histone methyltransferase function in memory.

Available for download on Wednesday, January 01, 2020

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