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Pre- and Postsynaptic Role of Dopamine D2 Receptor DD2R in Drosophila Olfactory Associative Learning

Neuroscience Program, Department of Biological Sciences, Ohio University, Athens, OH 45701, USA
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Biology 2014, 3(4), 831-845; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology3040831
Received: 1 October 2014 / Revised: 29 October 2014 / Accepted: 12 November 2014 / Published: 21 November 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Neural Mechanisms of Learning and Memory)
Dopaminergic neurons in Drosophila play critical roles in diverse brain functions such as motor control, arousal, learning, and memory. Using genetic and behavioral approaches, it has been firmly established that proper dopamine signaling is required for olfactory classical conditioning (e.g., aversive and appetitive learning). Dopamine mediates its functions through interaction with its receptors. There are two different types of dopamine receptors in Drosophila: D1-like (dDA1, DAMB) and D2-like receptors (DD2R). Currently, no study has attempted to characterize the role of DD2R in Drosophila learning and memory. Using a DD2R-RNAi transgenic line, we have examined the role of DD2R, expressed in dopamine neurons (i.e., the presynaptic DD2R autoreceptor), in larval olfactory learning. The function of postsynaptic DD2R expressed in mushroom body (MB) was also studied as MB is the center for Drosophila learning, with a function analogous to that of the mammalian hippocampus. Our results showed that suppression of presynaptic DD2R autoreceptors impairs both appetitive and aversive learning. Similarly, postsynaptic DD2R in MB neurons appears to be involved in both appetitive and aversive learning. The data confirm, for the first time, that DD2R plays an important role in Drosophila olfactory learning. View Full-Text
Keywords: Drosophila larvae; aversive learning; appetitive learning; dopaminergic neurons; mushroom body Drosophila larvae; aversive learning; appetitive learning; dopaminergic neurons; mushroom body
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Qi, C.; Lee, D. Pre- and Postsynaptic Role of Dopamine D2 Receptor DD2R in Drosophila Olfactory Associative Learning. Biology 2014, 3, 831-845.

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