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

A new Drosophila Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase (Caki) is localized in the central nervous system and implicated in walking speed.

Calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinases (CaM kinases) have been reported to be involved in neuroplasticity. We have cloned a new Drosophila CaM kinase gene named caki. We describe the molecular characterization of caki and a behavioral effect of its elimination. The caki gene is extremely large; comparison of the genomic and cDNA sequences reveals that the caki transcription unit is at least 150 kb. The catalytic domain of this new CaM kinase protein shares homology (41%) with type II CaM kinases, while the C-terminal part is divergent. Constitutively expressed Caki protein is enzymatically active since it causes a 3-fold increase in the level of the Rous sarcoma virus long terminal repeat (RSV LTR) promoter in a co-transfusion assay. In situ hybridization shows that during embryogenesis, larval and pupal life, transcription of caki is restricted almost exclusively to the central nervous system. In the adult head, immunohistochemistry reveals Caki protein in the lamina, the neuropil of the medulla, lobula, lobula plate and in the central brain. Mutant caki flies show reduced walking speed in 'Buridan's paradigm'.[1]


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