Genetics of sleep in drosophila melanogaster
Donlea JM., Seugnet L., Shaw PJ.
Although sleep has been studied in humans and rodents for several decades, it has become clear more recently that sleep is an evolutionarily conserved process that is present in several arthropods including cockroaches  and bees  as well as in the nematode C. elegans [see chapter 5]. Drosophila is a genetic model system that has been used extensively to successfully elucidate the mechanisms underlying numerous developmental, neurobiological, and behavioral phenomena. Over the past decade, data have shown that quiescence in Drosophila meets the same behavioral criteria that have been used to characterize sleep in other arthropods [3,4]. More recently, studies have indicated that sleep alters the transcription of similar genes in flies and rodents [5,6]. Additional experiments using Drosophila have identified several genetic pathways that influence sleep and have suggested that sleep may play an evolutionarily conserved function in learning and memory. © 2009 by Nova Science Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved.