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Shaw, H.S., Cameron, S.A., Chang, W.T., Rao, Y. (2019). The Conserved IgSF9 Protein Borderless Regulates Axonal Transport of Presynaptic Components and Color Vision in Drosophila.  J. Neurosci. 39(35): 6817--6828.
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Research paper

Normal brain function requires proper targeting of synaptic-vesicle (SV) and active-zone components for presynaptic assembly and function. Whether and how synaptogenic signals (e.g., adhesion) at axo-dendritic contact sites promote axonal transport of presynaptic components for synapse formation, however, remain unclear. In this study, we show that Borderless (Bdl), a member of the conserved IgSF9-family trans-synaptic cell adhesion molecules, plays a novel and specific role in regulating axonal transport of SV components. Loss of bdl disrupts axonal transport of SV components in photoreceptor R8 axons, but does not affect the transport of mitochondria. Genetic mosaic analysis, transgene rescue and cell-type-specific knockdown indicate that Bdl is required both presynaptically and postsynaptically for delivering SV components in R8 axons. Consistent with a role for Bdl in R8 axons, loss of bdl causes a failure of R8-dependent phototaxis response to green light. bdl interacts genetically with imac encoding for a member of the UNC-104/Imac/KIF1A-family motor proteins, and is required for proper localization of Imac in R8 presynaptic terminals. Our results support a model in which Bdl mediates specific axo-dendritic interactions in a homophilic manner, which upregulates the Imac motor in promoting axonal transport of SV components for R8 presynaptic assembly and function.SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Whether and how synaptogenic adhesion at axo-dendritic contact sites regulates axonal transport of presynaptic components remain unknown. Here we show for the first time that a trans-synaptic adhesion molecule mediates specific interactions at axo-dendritic contact sites, which is required for upregulating the UNC-104/Imac/KIF1A motor in promoting axonal transport of synaptic-vesicle components for presynaptic assembly and function.

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PubMed Central ID
PMC6733566 (PMC) (EuropePMC)
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    Publication Type
    J. Neurosci.
    Journal of Neuroscience
    Publication Year
    0270-6474 1529-2401
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