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Cell Mol Life Sci. 2010 Oct;67(20):3511-22. doi: 10.1007/s00018-010-0393-8. Epub 2010 May 11.

Myoinhibiting peptides are the ancestral ligands of the promiscuous Drosophila sex peptide receptor.

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  • 1Animal Physiology and Neurobiology, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Naamsestraat 59, Leuven, Belgium. jeroen.poels@bio.kuleuven.be

Abstract

Male insects change behaviors of female partners by co-transferring accessory gland proteins (Acps) like sex peptide (SP), with their sperm. The Drosophila sex peptide receptor (SPR) is a G protein-coupled receptor expressed in the female's nervous system and genital tract. While most Acps show a fast rate of evolution, SPRs are highly conserved in insects. We report activation of SPRs by evolutionary conserved myoinhibiting peptides (MIPs). Structural determinants in SP and MIPs responsible for this dual receptor activation are characterized. Drosophila SPR is also expressed in embryonic and larval stages and in the adult male nervous system, whereas SP expression is restricted to the male reproductive system. MIP transcripts occur in male and female central nervous system, possibly acting as endogenous SPR ligands. Evolutionary consequences of the promiscuous nature of SPRs are discussed. MIPs likely function as ancestral ligands of SPRs and could place evolutionary constraints on the MIP/SPR class.

PMID:
20458515
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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