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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)
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)
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)
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)
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)
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)
Synaptic connections in the nervous system are directed onto specific cellular and subcellular targets. Synaptic guidepost cells in the C. elegans vulval epithelium drive synapses from the HSNL motor neuron onto adjacent target neurons and muscles. Here, we show that the transmembrane immunoglobulin superfamily protein SYG-2 is a central component of the(More)
of CaMKIIa, the regulation of different CaMKII isoforms Ca/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII) by Ca/CaM and autophosphorylation is similar overall is a serine/threonine protein kinase that regulates (Miller and Kennedy, 1985; GuptaRoy and Griffith, 1996; long-term potentiation and other forms of neuronal plasDe Koninck and Schulman, 1998).(More)