Drosophila Models of Tauopathy

Yousuf Ali, Kai Ruan, R. Grace Zhai

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

1 Scopus citations


Tauopathies, including Alzheimer disease (AD), are a group of neurodegenerative diseases characterized by abnormal hyperphosphorylation of microtubule-associated protein Tau that leads to the formation of neurofibrillary tangles. The understanding of the molecular mechanisms that underlie Tau pathophysiology is still incomplete. The fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster has emerged in the past decade as an excellent model for neurodegenerative diseases. Drosophila models of tauopathy display prominent features of the human disease, including compromised lifespan; impairments of learning, memory, and locomotor functions; and age-dependent neurodegeneration visible as vacuolization. Here, we provide an overview of the current understanding of tauopathy and the methodology of using Drosophila to model tauopathies. We discuss the findings from Drosophila models and the molecular insights into Tau toxicity that Drosophila studies have provided. We further present the value of Drosophila models in genetic and small-molecule screens to identify neuroprotective strategies against tauopathy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationMovement Disorders
Subtitle of host publicationGenetics and Models: Second Edition
PublisherElsevier Inc.
Number of pages20
ISBN (Print)9780124051959
StatePublished - 2015


  • Chaperones
  • Drosophila
  • Genetic screens
  • Hyperphosphorylation
  • Learning and memory
  • Neuroprotective factors
  • Tau

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Drosophila Models of Tauopathy'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this