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We show that serotonin inhibits synaptic transmission at C. elegans neuromuscular junctions, and we describe a signaling pathway that mediates this effect. Release of acetylcholine from motor neurons was assayed by measuring the sensitivity of intact animals to the acetylcholinesterase inhibitor aldicarb. By this assay, exogenous serotonin inhibited(More)
Seven transmembrane receptors and their associated heterotrimeric guanine nucleotide-binding proteins (G proteins) have been proposed to play a key role in modulating the activities of neurons and muscles. The physiological function of the Caenorhabditis elegans G protein Go has been genetically characterized. Mutations in the goa-1 gene, which encodes an(More)
Mutations in the human dystrophin gene cause Duchenne muscular dystrophy, a common neuromuscular disease leading to a progressive necrosis of muscle cells. The etiology of this necrosis has not been clearly established, and the cellular function of the dystrophin protein is still unknown. We report here the identification of a dystrophin-like gene (named(More)
Syntrophins are a family of PDZ domain-containing adaptor proteins required for receptor localization. Syntrophins are also associated with the dystrophin complex in muscles. We report here the molecular and functional characterization of the Caenorhabditis elegans gene stn-1 (F30A10.8), which encodes a syntrophin with homology to vertebrate alpha and(More)
Dystrophin, the protein disrupted in Duchenne muscular dystrophy, forms a transmembrane complex with dystrophin-associated proteins. Dystrobrevins, proteins showing homology to the C-terminal end of dystrophin, and whose function is unknown, are part of the dystrophin complex. We report here that, in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, animals carrying(More)
aenorhabditis elegans is a powerful model system widely used to investigate the relationships between genes and complex behaviors like locomotion. However, physiological studies at the cellular level have been restricted by the difficulty to dissect this microscopic animal. Thus, little is known about the properties of body wall muscle cells used for(More)
Serotonin (5-HT) regulates a wide range of behaviors in Caenorhabditis elegans, including egg laying, male mating, locomotion and pharyngeal pumping. So far, four serotonin receptors have been described in the nematode C. elegans, three of which are G protein-coupled receptors (GPCR), (SER-1, SER-4 and SER-7), and one is an ion channel (MOD-1). By searching(More)
The properties of K(+) channels in body wall muscle cells acutely dissected from the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans were investigated at the macroscopic and unitary level using an in situ patch clamp technique. In the whole-cell configuration, depolarizations to potentials positive to -40 mV gave rise to outward currents resulting from the activation of(More)
BACKGROUND Dystrophin is the product of the gene that is mutated in Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), a progressive neuromuscular disease for which no treatment is available. Mice carrying a mutation in the gene for dystrophin (mdx mice) display only a mild phenotype, but it is aggravated when combined with a mutation in the MyoD gene. The nematode worm(More)
In mammals, the lack of dystrophin leads to a degeneration of skeletal muscles. It has been known for many years that this pathology can be blocked by denervation or immobilization of muscles. It is not yet clear, however, whether this suppressing effect is due to the absence of fiber contraction per se, or to other mechanisms which may be induced by such(More)