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EMBO J. 1986 Jul;5(7):1503-8.

Primary structure of a developmentally regulated nicotinic acetylcholine receptor protein from Drosophila.

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  • 1Zentrum für Molekulare Biologie, Universität Heidelberg, Im Neuenheimer Feld 282, D-6900 Heidelberg, FRG.


Acetylcholine is a major excitatory neurotransmitter in the central nervous system of insects. Using DNA probes of the Torpedo nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) we have isolated two overlapping cDNA clones encoding a putative neuronal AChR protein from the fruitfly, Drosophila melanogaster. The predicted mature protein consists of 497 amino acids, has a calculated mol. wt of 57 340 and shows extensive homology to known AChR subunits from different species along its entire amino acid sequence. Northern analysis revealed a hybridizing mRNA of 3.2 kb in late embryo and in pupae. Expression of the corresponding AChR gene thus characterizes periods of neuronal differentiation in Drosophila.

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