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The identification of synaptic partners is challenging in dense nerve bundles, where many processes occupy regions beneath the resolution of conventional light microscopy. To address this difficulty, we have developed GRASP, a system to label membrane contacts and synapses between two cells in living animals. Two complementary fragments of GFP are expressed(More)
Binding interactions between the plasma membrane and the cytoskeleton define cell functions such as cell shape, formation of cell processes, cell movement, and endocytosis. Here we use optical tweezers tether force measurements and show that plasma membrane phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate (PIP2) acts as a second messenger that regulates the adhesion(More)
The presynaptic regions of axons accumulate synaptic vesicles, active zone proteins and periactive zone proteins. However, the rules for orderly recruitment of presynaptic components are not well understood. We systematically examined molecular mechanisms of presynaptic development in egg-laying synapses of Caenorhabditis elegans, demonstrating that two(More)
Neural circuits are assembled through the coordinated innervation of pre- and postsynaptic partners. We show that connectivity between two interneurons, AIY and RIA, in Caenorhabditis elegans is orchestrated by a pair of glial cells that express UNC-6 (netrin). In the postsynaptic neuron RIA, the netrin receptor UNC-40 (DCC, deleted in colorectal cancer)(More)
Nervous system function is mediated by a precisely patterned network of synaptic connections. While several cell-adhesion and secreted molecules promote the assembly of synapses, the contribution of signals that negatively regulate synaptogenesis is not well understood. We examined synapse formation in the Caenorhabditis elegans motor neuron DA9, whose(More)
while in 10-day-old postnatal mice, the forebrain ␣:␤ ratio is 1:1 (Miller and Kennedy, 1985). On a structural basis, recombinant CaMKII␣ as well as purified brain CaMKII has been shown to form oligomers with ‫8ف‬ CaMKII␤ and CaMKII␣ have a similar overall domain organization and corresponding autophosphorylation consensus sequences, and even though the(More)
The location, size, and number of synapses critically influence the specificity and strength of neural connections. In axons, synaptic vesicle (SV) and active zone (AZ) proteins are transported by molecular motors and accumulate at discrete presynaptic loci. Little is known about the mechanisms coordinating presynaptic protein transport and deposition to(More)
During nervous system development, neurons form reproducible synapses onto specific targets. Here, we analyze the development of stereotyped synapses of the C. elegans HSNL neuron in vivo. Postsynaptic neurons and muscles were not required for accurate synaptic vesicle clustering in HSNL. Instead, vulval epithelial cells that contact HSNL act as synaptic(More)
Polarity is an essential feature of many cell types, including neurons that receive information from local inputs within their dendrites and propagate nerve impulses to distant targets through a single axon. It is generally believed that intrinsic structural differences between axons and dendrites dictate the polarized localization of axonal and dendritic(More)
Polarized trafficking of synaptic proteins to axons and dendrites is crucial to neuronal function. Through forward genetic analysis in C. elegans, we identified a cyclin (CYY-1) and a cyclin-dependent Pctaire kinase (PCT-1) necessary for targeting presynaptic components to the axon. Another cyclin-dependent kinase, CDK-5, and its activator p35, act in(More)