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Title: Proprioceptive Opsin Functions in Drosophila Larval Locomotion
Authors: Zanini, D
Giraldo, D
Warren, B
Katana, R
Andrés, M
Reddy, S
Pauls, S
Schwedhelm-Domeyer, N
Geurten, BRH
Göpfert, MC
First Published: 15-Mar-2018
Publisher: Elsevier (Cell Press)
Citation: Neuron, 2018, 98 (1), pp. 67-74.e4
Abstract: Animals rely on mechanosensory feedback from proprioceptors to control locomotory body movements. Unexpectedly, we found that this movement control requires visual opsins. Disrupting the Drosophila opsins NINAE or Rh6 impaired larval locomotion and body contractions, independently of light and vision. Opsins were detected in chordotonal proprioceptors along the larval body, localizing to their ciliated dendrites. Loss of opsins impaired mechanically evoked proprioceptor spiking and cilium ultrastructure. Without NINAE or Rh6, NOMPC mechanotransduction channels leaked from proprioceptor cilia and ciliary Inactive (Iav) channels partly disappeared. Locomotion is shown to require opsins in proprioceptors, and the receptors are found to express the opsin gene Rh7, in addition to ninaE and Rh6. Besides implicating opsins in movement control, this documents roles of non-ciliary, rhabdomeric opsins in cilium organization, providing a model for a key transition in opsin evolution and suggesting that structural roles of rhabdomeric opsins preceded their use for light detection.
DOI Link: 10.1016/j.neuron.2018.02.028
ISSN: 0896-6273
Version: Post-print
Status: Peer-reviewed
Type: Journal Article
Rights: Copyright © Elsevier (Cell Press) 2018. This version of the paper is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives License (, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.
Appears in Collections:Published Articles, Dept. of Neuroscience, Psychology and Behaviour

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