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The presynaptic machinery at the synapse of C. elegans

The presynaptic machinery at the synapse of C. elegans
The presynaptic machinery at the synapse of C. elegans
Synapses are specialized contact sites that mediate information flow between neurons and their targets. Important physical interactions across the synapse are mediated by synaptic adhesion molecules. These adhesions regulate formation of synapses during development and play a role during mature synaptic function. Importantly, genes regulating synaptogenesis and axon regeneration are conserved across the animal phyla. Genetic screens in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans have identified a number of molecules required for synapse patterning and assembly. C. elegans is able to survive even with its neuronal function severely compromised. This is in comparison with Drosophila and mice where increased complexity makes them less tolerant to impaired function. Although this fact may reflect differences in the function of the homologous proteins in the synapses between these organisms, the most likely interpretation is that many of these components are equally important, but not absolutely essential, for synaptic transmission to support the relatively undemanding life style of laboratory maintained C. elegans. Here, we review research on the major group of synaptic proteins, involved in the presynaptic machinery in C. elegans, showing a strong conservation between higher organisms and highlight how C. elegans can be used as an informative tool for dissecting synaptic components, based on a simple nervous system organization.
1354-2516
Calahorro Nunez, Fernando
dddfa373-d3cc-433f-8851-9ca37f2f3950
Gonzalez, Patricia
bc166241-fb24-44c1-bf25-c25c384dedbe
Calahorro Nunez, Fernando
dddfa373-d3cc-433f-8851-9ca37f2f3950
Gonzalez, Patricia
bc166241-fb24-44c1-bf25-c25c384dedbe

Calahorro Nunez, Fernando and Gonzalez, Patricia (2018) The presynaptic machinery at the synapse of C. elegans. Invertebrate Neuroscience, 18 (4). (doi:10.1007/s10158-018-0207-5).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Synapses are specialized contact sites that mediate information flow between neurons and their targets. Important physical interactions across the synapse are mediated by synaptic adhesion molecules. These adhesions regulate formation of synapses during development and play a role during mature synaptic function. Importantly, genes regulating synaptogenesis and axon regeneration are conserved across the animal phyla. Genetic screens in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans have identified a number of molecules required for synapse patterning and assembly. C. elegans is able to survive even with its neuronal function severely compromised. This is in comparison with Drosophila and mice where increased complexity makes them less tolerant to impaired function. Although this fact may reflect differences in the function of the homologous proteins in the synapses between these organisms, the most likely interpretation is that many of these components are equally important, but not absolutely essential, for synaptic transmission to support the relatively undemanding life style of laboratory maintained C. elegans. Here, we review research on the major group of synaptic proteins, involved in the presynaptic machinery in C. elegans, showing a strong conservation between higher organisms and highlight how C. elegans can be used as an informative tool for dissecting synaptic components, based on a simple nervous system organization.

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Accepted/In Press date: 22 February 2018
e-pub ahead of print date: 12 March 2018
Published date: June 2018

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 418688
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/418688
ISSN: 1354-2516
PURE UUID: be31c1ca-d461-4d91-ae2e-d312ce18474a
ORCID for Fernando Calahorro Nunez: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-0659-7728

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Date deposited: 19 Mar 2018 17:30
Last modified: 14 Mar 2019 01:34

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Author: Fernando Calahorro Nunez ORCID iD

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