Líffræðifélag Íslands - biologia.is
Líffræðiráðstefnan 2019

Erindi/veggspjald / Talk/poster E55

Running in circles at the neuromuscular junction

Höfundar / Authors: Kristín E. Allison, Kristín Gyða Hrafnkels Hlynsdóttir, Zophonías O. Jónsson, Sigrídur Rut Franzdóttir

Starfsvettvangur / Affiliations: Líf- og umhverfisvísindastofnun Háskóla Íslands

Kynnir / Presenter: Sigríður Rut Franzdóttir

The formation and maintenance of stable synapses at neuromuscular junctions (NMJs) requires precise microtubule dynamics and continuous transport of materials to and from the NMJ. Disruption in synaptogenesis and transport underlie many neurodegenerative disorders and better knowledge of the systems that build and maintain these systems is of importance for the development of treatments to halt or reverse the degenerative process. Pontin and Reptin are highly conserved proteins of the AAA+ family of ATPases which associate with numerous multi-subunit complexes and the microtubule cytoskeleton. Both proteins are expressed in the Drosophila melanogaster developing and adult nervous system and we have for the past few years studied their role in nervous system development and function. Using knock-down by RNA interference (RNAi) in the developing nervous system we found that both proteins are required for adult survival. The few escapers are extremely poorly and soon die after showing severe motor problems. Interestingly, larvae tend to show increased motor activity. A range of structural phenotypes is also observed in the larval CNS. In motor neurons, conditional knock-down of either protein leads to reduced survival, motor deficits and progressive loss of fitness, suggesting neurodegenerative effects and we have performed detailed analysis of larval NMJ phenotypes. Here we will summarize our findings on Pontin and Reptin in the CNS and at larval neuro-muscular junctions.