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J Neurogenet. 2012 Jun;26(2):189-97. doi: 10.3109/01677063.2012.690011. Epub 2012 Jun 20.

Mechanical and temperature stressor-induced seizure-and-paralysis behaviors in Drosophila bang-sensitive mutants.

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PhD Program in Genetics and Department of Biology, University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA, USA.


"Bang-sensitive" mutants of Drosophila display characteristic repertoires of distinct seizure-and-paralysis behaviors upon mechanical shock (Ganetzky & Wu, 1982, Genetics, 100, 597-614). The authors found that each of the bang-sensitive mutants described in this paper (bas, bss, eas, and tko) also displayed similar behavioral repertoires upon exposure to either high or low temperature. These repertoires are composed of interspersed periods of seizure and paralysis, and appear to have interesting parallels with vertebrate epileptiform behavior. Analysis of gynandromorph mosaics of these bang-sensitive mutant flies indicated that anatomical foci required for these two types of behaviors do not totally overlap, as they were separable among mosaic flies. Observations on mosaic and decapitated flies demonstrated an all-or-none expression of the seizure-and-paralysis behaviors, indicating global activity and long-range interactions in the nervous system. Therefore, the diverse collection of currently available Drosophila bang-sensitive mutants may serve as a rich source for mutational and cellular analysis to identify interacting molecular networks that are responsible for seizure phenotypes.

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