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Unique Sterol in the Ecology and Nutrition of Drosophila pachea

William B. Heed and Henry W. Kircher
Science
New Series, Vol. 149, No. 3685 (Aug. 13, 1965), pp. 758-761
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1715877
Page Count: 4
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Unique Sterol in the Ecology and Nutrition of Drosophila pachea
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Abstract

Drosophila pachea, which breeds only in the stems of senita cactus (Lophocereus schottii) throughout the Sonoran Desert, requires the cactus as a dietary supplement when reared on laboratory media. $\Delta ^{7}$-Stigmasten-3β-ol, isolated from the cactus or synthesized, can replace the cactus in the diet of flies reared nonaseptically or axenically. $\Delta ^{7}$-Cholesten-3β-ol and $\Delta ^{5,5}$-cholestadien-3β-ol could be substituted for the cactus sterol; $\Delta ^{5,7}$-stigmastadien-3β-ol produced infertile females. Cholesterol, 4$\alpha $-methyl-$\Delta ^{7}$-cholesten-3β -ol, β-sitosterol, stigmasterol, ergosterol, and $\Delta ^{7}$-ergosten-3β-ol did not support larval growth.

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