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Behavioral effects of TRPA1 in Drosophila motor neurons

TRPa1 channels expressed panneuronally (Gal4 C155), in motor neurons (Gal4 BG380), and in the ellipsoid body (Gal4 c232; Gal4 EB1) using the Gal4-Uas system. TRPa1 is a heat and voltage gated channel found in a small subset of fly neurons. When ambient temperature rises above ~25o C, neurons ectopically expressing TRPa1 become depolarized and fire action potentials tonically. Two minutes in a 35o C water bath causes paralysis when TRPa1 channels are expressed panneuronally or in motor neurons. Behavioral effects are acute and reversible. The same treatment does not cause paralysis in Uas controls or in flies expressing TRPa1 in the ellipsoid body. N = 20 females in each vial, except for Gal4 EB1 x Uas TRPa1 (N = 8 females).

Cartoon of courtship and mating in Drosophila


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