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Lecture "Functional versatility of Drosophila macrophages far beyond the immune response"

Macrophages are ultimate multitaskers playing protective, homeostatic, and regulatory roles in organisms. Their adequate response to different stress conditions is fundamental for the maintenance of health and homeostasis. While macrophage plasticity is essential for their functional adaptation to various situations, their prolonged pro-inflammatory or anti-inflammatory polarization leads to development of several pathologies such as metabolic syndrome, fatty liver disease, or cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases.

In our research, we have established Drosophila melanogaster as a model organism for an immunometabolic research of the role of macrophages in regulating metabolism during various stress situations such as infection, metamorphosis, starvation and lipodystrophy. We have identified a novel mechanism underlying the mobilization of lipids from the central metabolic organ to supplement the immune system with lipids required for bactericidal function of macrophages. Further, we have discovered an unanticipated nutritive role of macrophages, which convert the matter of dying cells into lipoproteins and storage peptides that are subsequently used by metabolically active tissues in the body. These observations have led us to speculate on the evolutionary origin of the macrophage functional versatility.




Gabriela Krejčová, Adéla Danielová, Pavla Nedbalová, Michalina Kazek, Lukáš Strych, Geetanjali Chawla, Jason M Tennessen, Jaroslava Lieskovská, Marek Jindra, Tomáš Doležal, Adam Bajgar (2019) Drosophila macrophages switch to aerobic glycolysis to mount effective antibacterial defense eLife 8:e50414.


Gabriela Krejčová, Cecilia Morgantini, Helena Zemanová, Volker M. Lauschke, Julie Kovářová, Jiří Kubásek, Pavla Nedbalová, Nick Kamps-Hughes, Martin Moos, Myriam Aouadi, Tomáš Doležal, Adam Bajgar (2023) Macrophage-derived insulin antagonist ImpL2 induces lipoprotein mobilization upon bacterial infection. The EMBO Journal, in press.






Adam Bajgar is a junior researcher currently working at the University of South Bohemia, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetic. Adams’ laboratory is focused on research of various roles that macrophages adopt in response to stress conditions, such as infection, starvation, high-fat diet feeding, metamorphosis, and genetically induced lipodystrophy. The long-term goal of Adam’s research group is to fully establish Drosophila as a model for studying macrophage-adipose tissue interaction and develop novel tools for macrophage-specific delivery. In future perspective, Adam and his close collaborator Gabriela Krejčová are aiming to identify the mechanism underlying the phenomenon of trained immunity in insects and design strategies enabling insect “vaccination” and immunoboosting.  


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