Elucidating genes that affect life span or that can be used as biomarkers for ageing has received attention in diverse studies in recent years. Using model organisms and various approaches several genes have been linked to the longevity phenotype. For Drosophila melanogaster those studies have usually focussed on one sex and on flies originating from one genetic background, and results from different studies often do not overlap. Using D. melanogaster selected for increased longevity we aimed to find robust longevity related genes by examining gene expression in both sexes of flies originating from different genetic backgrounds. Further, we compared expression changes across three ages, when flies were young, middle aged or old, to examine how candidate gene expression changes with the onset of ageing. We selected 10 genes based on their expression differences in prior microarray studies. For about 50% of these we confirmed their potential as a candidate longevity gene. We found one robust candidate gene for longevity, CG32638. Three other genes, CG8934, mRpS10 and Spn43Ad, showed a tendency to be involved in life span determination in both backgrounds tested.
Journal of Insect Physiology, 2013, Vol 69, Issue 3, p. 255-262