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Kim, D.H., Kim, Y.J., Adams, M.E. (2018). Endocrine regulation of airway clearance in Drosophila.  Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 115(7): 1535--1540.
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Research paper

Fluid clearance from the respiratory system during developmental transitions is critically important for achieving optimal gas exchange in animals. During insect development from embryo to adult, airway clearance occurs episodically each time the molt is completed by performance of the ecdysis sequence, coordinated by a peptide-signaling cascade initiated by ecdysis-triggering hormone (ETH). We find that the neuropeptide Kinin (also known as Drosokinin or Leukokinin) is required for normal respiratory fluid clearance or "tracheal air-filling" in Drosophila larvae. Disruption of Kinin signaling leads to defective air-filling during all larval stages. Such defects are observed upon ablation or electrical silencing of Kinin neurons, as well as RNA silencing of the Kinin gene or the ETH receptor in Kinin neurons, indicating that ETH targets Kinin neurons to promote tracheal air-filling. A Kinin receptor mutant fly line (Lkrf02594) also exhibits tracheal air-filling defects in all larval stages. Targeted Kinin receptor silencing in tracheal epithelial cells using breathless or pickpocket (ppk) drivers compromises tracheal air-filling. On the other hand, promotion of Kinin signaling in vivo through peptide injection or Kinin neuron activation through Drosophila TrpA1 (dTrpA1) expression induces premature tracheal collapse and air-filling. Moreover, direct exposure of tracheal epithelial cells in vitro to Kinin leads to calcium mobilization in tracheal epithelial cells. Our findings strongly implicate the neuropeptide Kinin as an important regulator of airway clearance via intracellular calcium mobilization in tracheal epithelial cells of Drosophila.

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PMC5816185 (PMC) (EuropePMC)
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    Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A.
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
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