HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
This is your fly's brain on drugs

Cocaine addiction wreaks profound changes on the brain, hijacking reward circuits and depressing inhibitory loops to the point that drug seeking and taking become central drivers of behavior. While mammalian models are useful for mapping out the neural complexity of these behaviors, insights into the molecular basis of drug abuse can often be garnered from simple models, such as the fruitfly, Drosophila. In the open-access journal PLoS Biology, Ulrike Heberlein and colleagues describe their discovery of a new gene that modulates sensitivity to cocaine within the cells of the fruitfly's internal clock. They further show that the cells' role in regulating cocaine sensitivity is distinct from its function as a timekeeper.

One known effect of cocaine on Drosophila is loss of "negative geotaxis," or wall climbing, in response to startle. Using this behavior to screen 400 different mutants, the researchers identified seven with an increased response to cocaine, and for two of these, the disrupted gene was the same, Lmo.

While Lmo is found throughout the body, it is enriched in the brain, and its cocaine-related effects appear to localize in the ventral lateral neurons (LNvs), which provide the fly with an internal clock, driving circadian activities even in the absence of light. However, it appears that these neurons modulate cocaine sensitivity independently of their role in controlling circadian rhythms.

Because Lmo-related proteins are found in key areas of mammalian brains, these results may have important implications for understanding innate differences in sensitivity to cocaine in humans, and potentially provide targets for development of drugs to treat or prevent addiction.


'"/>

Contact: Paul Ocampo
pocampo@plos.org
1-415-624-1224
Public Library of Science
22-Nov-2004


Page: 1

Related biology news :

1. Dragonflys metabolic disease provides clues about human obesity
2. Hard-wiring the fruit flys visual system
3. On a flys wing, scientists tally evolutions winners and losses
4. Fruit flys beating heart helps identify human heart disease genes
5. Invasion of the brain tumors
6. Preclinical study links gene to brain aneurysm formation
7. Gene variant is associated with brain anatomy, clinical course of ADHD
8. Human knowledge is based upon directed connectivity between brain areas
9. A sensory organ, not the brain, differentiates male and female behavior in some mammals
10. Reading ability protects brain from lead exposure
11. Strength of connections between brain regions may affect an adolescents response to peer influence

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:5/3/2016)... , May 3, 2016  Neurotechnology, a ... the MegaMatcher Automated Biometric Identification System (ABIS) ... large-scale multi-biometric projects. MegaMatcher ABIS can process multiple ... using any combination of fingerprint, face or iris ... MegaMatcher SDK and MegaMatcher Accelerator , ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... 2016 First quarter 2016:   ... with the first quarter of 2015 The gross margin ... (loss: 18.8) and the operating margin was 40% (-13) ... Cash flow from operations was SEK 249.9 M (21.2) , ... unchanged, SEK 7,000-8,500 M. The operating margin for 2016 ...
(Date:4/26/2016)... 27, 2016 Research and ... Biometrics Market 2016-2020"  report to their offering.  , ... The analysts forecast the global multimodal biometrics ... during the period 2016-2020.  Multimodal biometrics ... such as the healthcare, BFSI, transportation, automotive, and ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/27/2016)... June 27, 2016  Global demand for enzymes ... through 2020 to $7.2 billion.  This market includes ... cleaning products, biofuel production, animal feed, and other ... and biocatalysts). Food and beverages will remain the ... increasing consumption of products containing enzymes in developing ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... June 27, 2016 , ... ... findings on what they believe could be a new and helpful biomarker for ... research. Click here to read it now. , Biomarkers are components ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... , ... June 27, 2016 , ... ... for Amgen, will join the faculty of the University of North Carolina ... professor of strategy and entrepreneurship at UNC Kenan-Flagler, with a focus on the ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016  Regular discussions on a ... take place between the two entities said Poloz. ... Ottawa , he pointed to the country,s ... the federal government. ... said, "Both institutions have common economic goals, why not sit ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: