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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Pheromone-binding proteins contribute to the activation of olfactory receptor neurons in the silkmoths antheraea polyphemus and Bombyx mori.

The sensilla trichodea of the silkmoth Antheraea polyphemus are innervated by three types of receptor neurons each responding specifically to one of three pheromone components. The sensillum lymph of these sensilla surrounding the sensory dendrites contains three different types of pheromone-binding proteins (PBPs) in high concentrations. The sensilla trichodea of the silkmoth Bombyx mori are supplied by two receptor neurons each tuned specifically to one of the two pheromone components bombykol and bombykal, but only one type of PBP has been found so far in these sensilla. Recombinant PBPs of both silkmoth species in various combinations with pheromone components were applied to the receptor neurons via tip-opened sensilla during electrophysiological recordings. Over a fairly broad range of pheromone concentrations the responses of the receptor neurons depended on both, the pheromone component and the type of the PBP. Therefore, the PBPs appear to contribute to the excitation of the receptor neurons. Furthermore, bombykal in combination with the expressed PBP of B. mori failed to activate the corresponding receptor neuron of B. mori, but did so if combined with one of the PBPs of A. polyphemus. Therefore, a still unknown binding protein involved in bombykal transport might be present in B. mori.[1]


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