Discipline: Biological Sciences
Subcategory: Cell and Molecular Biology
Diana Najera - Seward County Community College
Co-Author(s): Maureen Gorman, Kansas State University, Manhattan KS
Iron is essential for all organisms, including insects. In insects iron is used in energy metabolism, cell division, detoxification of insecticides and, in some, for geomagnetic orientation. Although iron is very important in insects, it is unknown how iron is taken up by insect cells. Transferrin and ferritin, which are proteins that iron binds to, are present in hemolymph making it a possibility that these proteins are involved in iron uptake by the cells through endocytosis. Our hypothesis is that blocking endocytosis will result in decreased uptake of transferrin and/or ferritin, and that this will result in iron deficient cells. For our experiments, we used the Drosophila melanogaster Sg4 cell line. To measure iron content of cultured insect cells, we adapted a ferrozine-based assay that was previously used with whole insects. To establish a suitable concentration of chemical inhibitors of endocytosis, we measured the effects of different concentrations of inhibitors on the viability of Sg4 cells. Using what we learned from these trial experiments, we blocked endocytosis with two chemical inhibitors and then measured cellular iron content with the ferrozine-based iron content assay adapted for Sg4 cells. Our results showed that there was no significant difference in iron content between cells treated with endocytosis inhibitors and untreated cells. This suggests endocytosis might not be involved in iron uptake by Sg4 cells, other pathways compensated for the lack of endocytosis, or that the endocytosis inhibitors did not block the correct type of endocytosis.Not Submitted
Funder Acknowledgement(s): National Science Foundation grant number 1656388 to M. Gorman KS-LSAMP program, which is supported by National Science Foundation grant number 1305059.
Faculty Advisor: Maureen Gorman, firstname.lastname@example.org
Role: I worked directly with Dr. Gorman and the data provided in the abstrat was my role.