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

An increased receptive field of olfactory receptor Or43a in the antennal lobe of Drosophila reduces benzaldehyde-driven avoidance behavior.

Most animals orient themselves in their environment through the perception of olfactory cues. In order to gain insight into the principles of olfactory processing in Drosophila, we misexpressed olfactory receptor Or43a in additional olfactory receptor neurons of the third antennal segment using enhancer trap line GH320. The behavioral response of GH320/UAS-or43a flies was changed upon benzaldehyde application. Using the T-maze assay, misexpressing flies performed a reduced avoidance reaction to benzaldehyde as compared with wild type. This reduction of avoidance could be mimicked in wild type flies by exposing them to a mixture of benzaldehyde and ethyl acetate. We therefore conclude that the application of benzaldehyde, an identified ligand of Or43a, resulted in activation of a number of glomeruli in transformed flies in addition to glomerulus DA4, which is the regular target of Or43a expressing neurons. Our results demonstrate the relevance of specific olfactory sensory input and subsequent processing in the antennal lobe for Drosophila behavior.[1]


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