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On the mechanics of cardiac function of Drosophila embryo.

Wu M, Sato TN - PLoS ONE (2008)

Bottom Line: Mechanics of cardiac pumping is a complex process, and many experimental and theoretical approaches have been undertaken to understand this process.Furthermore, we have identified one mutant line that exhibits aberrant pumping mechanics.We, furthermore, believe our mechanistic data provides important information that is useful for our further understanding of the design of biological structure and function and for engineering the pumps for medical uses.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, The Sibley School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, United States of America.

ABSTRACT
The heart is a vital organ that provides essential circulation throughout the body. Malfunction of cardiac pumping, thus, leads to serious and most of the times, to fatal diseases. Mechanics of cardiac pumping is a complex process, and many experimental and theoretical approaches have been undertaken to understand this process. We have taken advantage of the simplicity of the embryonic heart of an invertebrate, Drosophila melanogaster, to understand the fundamental mechanics of the beating heart. We applied a live imaging technique to the beating embryonic heart combined with analytical imaging tools to study the dynamic mechanics of the pumping. Furthermore, we have identified one mutant line that exhibits aberrant pumping mechanics. The Drosophila embryonic heart consists of only 104 cardiac cells forming a simple straight tube that can be easily accessed for real-time imaging. Therefore, combined with the wealth of available genetic tools, the embryonic Drosophila heart may serve as a powerful model system for studies of human heart diseases, such as arrhythmia and congenital heart diseases. We, furthermore, believe our mechanistic data provides important information that is useful for our further understanding of the design of biological structure and function and for engineering the pumps for medical uses.

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Structure of the tubular embryonic Drosophila heart and the aorta.The upper panel is a fluorescence image of a fruit fly embryo at stage 17, expressing a nuclear green fluorescent protein (GFP) marker in all the cardio blasts (toll-nGFP). The insert is the DMef2::Gal4;Twist::Gal4;UAS::actinGFP embryo showing morphologically distinguishable ostia cells (arrows). The lower panel illustrates the structure of the tube heart and the aorta consisting of two rows of cardiac cells (52 cells each row). Three pairs of ostia cells are spaced equally along the heart proper that serve as the inflow check valves. The orange box indicates where the outflow check valve is. We name it an aortic valve. This is derived from the heart beat function observed in our experiments. Whether the molecular details of the cells in the aortic valve region are different from the other cardiac cells are not known.
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pone-0004045-g001: Structure of the tubular embryonic Drosophila heart and the aorta.The upper panel is a fluorescence image of a fruit fly embryo at stage 17, expressing a nuclear green fluorescent protein (GFP) marker in all the cardio blasts (toll-nGFP). The insert is the DMef2::Gal4;Twist::Gal4;UAS::actinGFP embryo showing morphologically distinguishable ostia cells (arrows). The lower panel illustrates the structure of the tube heart and the aorta consisting of two rows of cardiac cells (52 cells each row). Three pairs of ostia cells are spaced equally along the heart proper that serve as the inflow check valves. The orange box indicates where the outflow check valve is. We name it an aortic valve. This is derived from the heart beat function observed in our experiments. Whether the molecular details of the cells in the aortic valve region are different from the other cardiac cells are not known.

Mentions: Although zebrafish heart provides a useful model system to study the mechanics of the most primitive chambered heart, it may be as well useful to study the mechanics of cardiac pumping of the heart of even simpler structure. Drosophila is one of the most popular invertebrate model organisms that have been used for centuries. The heart of Drosophila is a simple straight tube consisting of two rows of cardiac cells forming a linear tubular structure [8], [9]. During embryogenesis, a total of 52 cardiac precursor cells exist on each side of embryonic body separated by the dorsal midline axis, which come together to form a tubular structure referred to as dorsal vessel. Towards the end of embryogenesis, the posterior portion (heart proper) becomes wider than the anterior portion (aorta) (Figure 1). Soon after these two distinguishable structures appear, three sets of cardiac cells, each set consisting of four cells with two cells on each row, in the heart proper appears morphologically distinguishable from the rest of the cardiac cells (Figure 1). These cardiac cells of unique shape are called ostia and suspected to form channels for body fluid (hemolymph) to enter into the heart proper [10]. In addition to the differentiation of cardiac cells to the morphologically distinguishable cells, they also differentiate into molecularly distinguishable cells [8]–[10]. In the past couple two decades, genetic studies of developing Drosophila heart have uncovered evolutionarily conserved molecular pathways that specify the identity of cardiac cells [11]–[13]. More recently, such classical genetic studies have been successfully applied to gain insight into the molecular pathways that control the formation of tubular structure of the Drosophila heart [14]–[16]. Furthermore, the genetic approaches in studying the Drosophila heart also provided some important insights into the molecular mechanisms underlying the cardiac functions [17].


On the mechanics of cardiac function of Drosophila embryo.

Wu M, Sato TN - PLoS ONE (2008)

Structure of the tubular embryonic Drosophila heart and the aorta.The upper panel is a fluorescence image of a fruit fly embryo at stage 17, expressing a nuclear green fluorescent protein (GFP) marker in all the cardio blasts (toll-nGFP). The insert is the DMef2::Gal4;Twist::Gal4;UAS::actinGFP embryo showing morphologically distinguishable ostia cells (arrows). The lower panel illustrates the structure of the tube heart and the aorta consisting of two rows of cardiac cells (52 cells each row). Three pairs of ostia cells are spaced equally along the heart proper that serve as the inflow check valves. The orange box indicates where the outflow check valve is. We name it an aortic valve. This is derived from the heart beat function observed in our experiments. Whether the molecular details of the cells in the aortic valve region are different from the other cardiac cells are not known.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC2602980&req=5

pone-0004045-g001: Structure of the tubular embryonic Drosophila heart and the aorta.The upper panel is a fluorescence image of a fruit fly embryo at stage 17, expressing a nuclear green fluorescent protein (GFP) marker in all the cardio blasts (toll-nGFP). The insert is the DMef2::Gal4;Twist::Gal4;UAS::actinGFP embryo showing morphologically distinguishable ostia cells (arrows). The lower panel illustrates the structure of the tube heart and the aorta consisting of two rows of cardiac cells (52 cells each row). Three pairs of ostia cells are spaced equally along the heart proper that serve as the inflow check valves. The orange box indicates where the outflow check valve is. We name it an aortic valve. This is derived from the heart beat function observed in our experiments. Whether the molecular details of the cells in the aortic valve region are different from the other cardiac cells are not known.
Mentions: Although zebrafish heart provides a useful model system to study the mechanics of the most primitive chambered heart, it may be as well useful to study the mechanics of cardiac pumping of the heart of even simpler structure. Drosophila is one of the most popular invertebrate model organisms that have been used for centuries. The heart of Drosophila is a simple straight tube consisting of two rows of cardiac cells forming a linear tubular structure [8], [9]. During embryogenesis, a total of 52 cardiac precursor cells exist on each side of embryonic body separated by the dorsal midline axis, which come together to form a tubular structure referred to as dorsal vessel. Towards the end of embryogenesis, the posterior portion (heart proper) becomes wider than the anterior portion (aorta) (Figure 1). Soon after these two distinguishable structures appear, three sets of cardiac cells, each set consisting of four cells with two cells on each row, in the heart proper appears morphologically distinguishable from the rest of the cardiac cells (Figure 1). These cardiac cells of unique shape are called ostia and suspected to form channels for body fluid (hemolymph) to enter into the heart proper [10]. In addition to the differentiation of cardiac cells to the morphologically distinguishable cells, they also differentiate into molecularly distinguishable cells [8]–[10]. In the past couple two decades, genetic studies of developing Drosophila heart have uncovered evolutionarily conserved molecular pathways that specify the identity of cardiac cells [11]–[13]. More recently, such classical genetic studies have been successfully applied to gain insight into the molecular pathways that control the formation of tubular structure of the Drosophila heart [14]–[16]. Furthermore, the genetic approaches in studying the Drosophila heart also provided some important insights into the molecular mechanisms underlying the cardiac functions [17].

Bottom Line: Mechanics of cardiac pumping is a complex process, and many experimental and theoretical approaches have been undertaken to understand this process.Furthermore, we have identified one mutant line that exhibits aberrant pumping mechanics.We, furthermore, believe our mechanistic data provides important information that is useful for our further understanding of the design of biological structure and function and for engineering the pumps for medical uses.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, The Sibley School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, United States of America.

ABSTRACT
The heart is a vital organ that provides essential circulation throughout the body. Malfunction of cardiac pumping, thus, leads to serious and most of the times, to fatal diseases. Mechanics of cardiac pumping is a complex process, and many experimental and theoretical approaches have been undertaken to understand this process. We have taken advantage of the simplicity of the embryonic heart of an invertebrate, Drosophila melanogaster, to understand the fundamental mechanics of the beating heart. We applied a live imaging technique to the beating embryonic heart combined with analytical imaging tools to study the dynamic mechanics of the pumping. Furthermore, we have identified one mutant line that exhibits aberrant pumping mechanics. The Drosophila embryonic heart consists of only 104 cardiac cells forming a simple straight tube that can be easily accessed for real-time imaging. Therefore, combined with the wealth of available genetic tools, the embryonic Drosophila heart may serve as a powerful model system for studies of human heart diseases, such as arrhythmia and congenital heart diseases. We, furthermore, believe our mechanistic data provides important information that is useful for our further understanding of the design of biological structure and function and for engineering the pumps for medical uses.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus