The DNA methylation program of the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster is carried out by the single DNA methyltransferase gene dDnmt2, the function of which is unknown before. We present evidence that intactness of the gene is required for maintenance of the normal life span of the fruit flies. In contrast, overexpression of dDnmt2 could extend Drosophila life span. The study links the Drosophila DNA methylation program with the small heatshock proteins and longevity/aging and has interesting implication on the eukaryotic DNA methylation programs in general.
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