Heterotypic Gap Junctions between Two Neurons in the Drosophila Brain Are Critical for Memory

Wu, C.-L., Shih, M.-F. M., Lai, J. S.-Y., Yang, H.-T., Turner, G. C., Chen, L. , Chiang, A. S. (May 2011) Heterotypic Gap Junctions between Two Neurons in the Drosophila Brain Are Critical for Memory. Current Biology, 21 (10). pp. 848-854. ISSN 0960-9822

URL: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21530256
DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2011.02.041

Abstract

Summary Gap junctions play an important role in the regulation of neuronal metabolism and homeostasis by serving as connections that enable small molecules to pass between cells and synchronize activity between cells [[1], [2] and [3]]. Although recent studies have linked gap junctions to memory formation [[4] and [5]], it remains unclear how they contribute to this process [[1] and [5]]. Gap junctions are hexameric hemichannels formed from the connexin and pannexin gene families in chordates and the innexin (inx) gene family in invertebrates [[6] and [7]]. Here we show that two modulatory neurons, the anterior paired lateral (APL) neuron and the dorsal paired medial (DPM) neuron, form heterotypic gap junctions within the mushroom body (MB), a learning and memory center in the Drosophila brain. Using RNA interference-mediated knockdowns of inx7 and inx6 in the APL and DPM neurons, respectively, we found that flies showed normal olfactory associative learning and intact anesthesia-resistant memory (ARM) but failed to form anesthesia-sensitive memory (ASM). Our results reveal that the heterotypic gap junctions between the APL and DPM neurons are an essential part of the MB circuitry for memory formation, potentially constituting a recurrent neural network to stabilize ASM.

Item Type: Paper
Subjects: organism description > animal > insect > Drosophila
organs, tissues, organelles, cell types and functions > tissues types and functions > gap junctions
organism description > animal behavior > memory
organs, tissues, organelles, cell types and functions > tissues types and functions > mushroom body
organism description > animal behavior > olfactory
CSHL Authors:
Communities: CSHL labs > Turner lab
Depositing User: CSHL Librarian
Date: 24 May 2011
Date Deposited: 11 Apr 2012 15:19
Last Modified: 14 Mar 2013 15:54
Related URLs:
URI: http://repository.cshl.edu/id/eprint/26147

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