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J Neurochem. 2005 Aug;94(4):1146-57. Epub 2005 Jul 7.

Characterization of a novel D2-like dopamine receptor with a truncated splice variant and a D1-like dopamine receptor unique to invertebrates from Caenorhabditis elegans.

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Department of Life Sciences, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, University of Tokyo, Meguro-ku, Tokyo, Japan.


We have cloned two novel Caenorhabditis elegans dopamine receptors, DOP-3 and DOP-4. DOP-3 shows high sequence homology with other D2-like dopamine receptors. As a result of alternative splicing, a truncated splice variant of DOP-3, DOP-3nf, was produced. Because of the in-frame insertion of a stop codon in the third intracellular loop, DOP-3nf lacks the sixth and seventh transmembrane domains that are found in the full-length DOP-3 receptor. Reporter gene assay showed that DOP-3 attenuates forskolin-stimulated cAMP formation in response to dopamine stimulation, whereas DOP-3nf does not. When DOP-3 was coexpressed with DOP-3nf, the ability to inhibit forskolin-stimulated cAMP formation was reduced. DOP-4 shows high sequence homology with D1-like dopamine receptors unique to invertebrates, which are distinct from mammalian D1-like dopamine receptors. Reporter gene assay showed that DOP-4 stimulates cAMP accumulation in response to dopamine stimulation. These two receptors provide new opportunities to understand dopaminergic signaling at the molecular level.

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