Exposure to cigarette smoke increases urate level and decreases glutathione level in larval Drosophila melanogaster

Masaru Fujiwara, Yuko Hamatake, Sakae Arimoto, Keinosuke Okamoto, Toshinori Suzuki, Tomoe Negishi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Recently, we reported experimental evidence to support the notion that in Drosophila melanogaster , urate is involved in defense against toxic effects of environmental cigarette smoke (ECS). To obtain further information pertaining to the defense mechanisms involving urate and other antioxidants, the present study measured the levels of urate, its precursors and glutathione, and SOD activity in larval flies of wild-type strains (Oregon-R and Canton-S) and two urate-null mutant strains (ma-l and ry 1) following exposure to ECS for various durations. In both wild type strains, unlike the case in either of the mutant strains, the urate level significantly increased above the basal level in a manner dependent on the duration of ECS exposure. Similar increases in the level of urate precursors were found in Canton-S and in both of the urate-null strains. There was a slight increase in glutathione level above the control level following ECS exposure for a short time, followed by an exposure-dependent decrease to less than 60% of the control level within the exposure range used in all of the four strains. On the other hand, no appreciable change was found in the SOD activity prior to or following ECS exposure, irrespective of the strain examined. In terms of the survival of treated larvae to adulthood under the conditions used for the measurements of urate and others, it was found that wild-type strain Canton-S was as sensitive as the urate-null mutant strains and clearly more sensitive than wild-type strains Oregon-R and Hikone-R. This was so despite the fact that, compared with Oregon-R, Canton-S contained urate at relatively higher levels prior to and following ECS exposure, and that the glutathione levels in Canton-S prior to and following treatment were comparable with those in other strains. These results are discussed with respect to the involvement of urate and glutathione in defense against the toxicity of ECS and the possible existence of another defense mechanism which is deficient in the Canton-S strain.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)89-95
Number of pages7
JournalGenes and Environment
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • Drosophila
  • Environmental cigarette smoke
  • Glutathione
  • Oxidative stress
  • Survival
  • Uric acid

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Genetics
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)


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