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Citation
Soller, M., Haussmann, I.U., Hollmann, M., Choffat, Y., White, K., Kubli, E., Schäfer, M.A. (2006). Sex-peptide-regulated female sexual behavior requires a subset of ascending ventral nerve cord neurons.  Curr. Biol. 16(18): 1771--1782.
FlyBase ID
FBrf0192935
Publication Type
Research paper
Abstract

Male-derived Sex-peptide (SP) elicits egg laying and rejection of courting males in mated Drosophila females. Little is known about the genes that specify the underlying neuronal circuits and mediate this switch in female sexual behavior.Here we show that the egghead gene involved in glycosphingolipid biosynthesis provides an essential component to the SP response. We have isolated viable alleles of the vital egghead gene that abolish egghead expression from a distal promoter resulting in the absence of the largest transcript of this complex transcription unit. Temporally and spatially restricted expression of egghead revealed a requirement for egghead early in the development of apterous-expressing ventral nerve cord neurons to rescue the SP response. In viable egghead alleles, these ascending interneurons, three per abdominal and seven per thoracic hemisegment, fail to innervate the central brain. egghead expression in apterous neurons rescues neuronal targeting and the response to SP. Furthermore, neurotransmission in apterous neurons is required to elicit the SP response.Together with the former finding of SP binding to afferent nerves , these results suggest that SP-mediated modification of sensory input switches female sexual behavior from the virgin to the mated state.

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    Language of Publication
    English
    Additional Languages of Abstract
    Parent Publication
    Publication Type
    Journal
    Abbreviation
    Curr. Biol.
    Title
    Current Biology
    Publication Year
    1991-
    ISBN/ISSN
    0960-9822
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