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The Drosophila neuropeptides PDF and sNPF have opposing electrophysiological and molecular effects on central neurons

Vecsey, Christopher G.; Pírez, Nicolás; Griffith, Leslie C.
Fonte: American Physiological Society Publicador: American Physiological Society
Tipo: Artigo de Revista Científica
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Neuropeptides have widespread effects on behavior, but how these molecules alter the activity of their target cells is poorly understood. We employed a new model system in Drosophila melanogaster to assess the electrophysiological and molecular effects of neuropeptides, recording in situ from larval motor neurons, which transgenically express a receptor of choice. We focused on two neuropeptides, pigment-dispersing factor (PDF) and small neuropeptide F (sNPF), which play important roles in sleep/rhythms and feeding/metabolism. PDF treatment depolarized motor neurons expressing the PDF receptor (PDFR), increasing excitability. sNPF treatment had the opposite effect, hyperpolarizing neurons expressing the sNPF receptor (sNPFR). Live optical imaging using a genetically encoded fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET)-based sensor for cyclic AMP (cAMP) showed that PDF induced a large increase in cAMP, whereas sNPF caused a small but significant decrease in cAMP. Coexpression of pertussis toxin or RNAi interference to disrupt the G-protein Gαo blocked the electrophysiological responses to sNPF, showing that sNPFR acts via Gαo signaling. Using a fluorescent sensor for intracellular calcium, we observed that sNPF-induced hyperpolarization blocked spontaneous waves of activity propagating along the ventral nerve cord...