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Poeck, B., Triphan, T., Neuser, K., Strauss, R. (2008). Locomotor control by the central complex in Drosophila - An analysis of the tay bridge mutant.  Dev. Neurobiol. 68(8): 1046--1058.
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Several aspects of locomotor control have been ascribed to the central complex of the insect brain; however, the role of distinct substructures of this complex is not well known. The tay bridge1 (tay1) mutant of Drosophila melanogaster was originally isolated on the basis of reduced walking speed and activity. In addition, tay1 is defective in the compensation of rotatory stimuli during walking and histologically, tay1 causes a mid-sagittal constriction of the protocerebral bridge, a constituent of the central complex. Cloning of the tay gene revealed that it encodes a novel protein with no significant homology to any known protein. To associate the behavioral phenotypes with the anatomical defect in the protocerebral bridge, we used different driver lines to express the tay cDNA in various neuronal subpopulations of the central brain in tay1-mutant flies. These experiments showed an association of the aberrant walking speed and activity with the structural defect in the protocerebral bridge. In contrast, the compensation of rotatory stimuli during walking was rescued without a restoration of the protocerebral bridge. The results of our differential rescue approach are supported by neuronal silencing experiments using conditional tetanus toxin expression in the same subset of neurons. These findings show for the first time that the walking speed and activity is controlled by different substructures of the central brain than the compensatory locomotion for rotatory stimuli.

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    Publication Type
    Dev. Neurobiol.
    Developmental Neurobiology
    Publication Year
    1932-8451 1932-846X
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