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Neuron. 1992 Apr;8(4):631-42.

Identification of a Drosophila gene encoding a calmodulin-binding protein with homology to the trp phototransduction gene.

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Department of Genetics, University of Melbourne, Parkville, Victoria, Australia.


We have isolated a number of Drosophila cDNAs on the basis of their encoding calmodulin-binding proteins. A full-length cDNA clone corresponding to one of these genes has been cloned and sequenced. Conservation of amino acid sequence and tissue-specific expression are observed between this gene and the transient receptor potential (trp) gene. We propose the name transient receptor potential-like (trpl) to describe this newly isolated gene. The trpl protein contains two possible calmodulin-binding sites, six transmembrane regions, and a sequence homologous to an ankyrin-like repeat. Structurally, the trpl and trp proteins resemble cation channel proteins, particularly the brain isoform of the voltage-sensitive Ca2+ channel. The identification of a protein similar to the trp gene product, yet also able to bind Ca2+/calmodulin, allows for a reinterpretation of the phenotype of the trp mutations and suggests that both genes may encode light-sensitive ion channels.

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