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Pavón Arocas, Oriol ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-5822-8858 (26. August 2015): Sleep regulation in Drosophila. Master Thesis, Faculty of Biology, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München. [PDF, 3MB]


Sleep is a ubiquitous process preserved across all types of animals, but its functional implications and the underlying cellular and molecular mechanisms are far from being understood. In the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster, a group of neurons projecting to the dorsal Fan-shaped Body (dFB) are implicated in homeostatic sleep regulation and can induce sleep on demand upon activation. Dopamine is an aminergic neurotransmitter with wake-promoting effects. Work in our lab revealed a strong inhibitory effect of dopamine on dFB neurons suggesting that dopamine achieves its arousal effects via directly shutting down sleep-promoting dFB neurons. Here, I have used a photoactivatable GFP-based tracing method to identify a small number of dopaminergic neurons residing in the PPL1 cluster that send projections to dFB neurons. In parallel, I have carried out an in silico screen of Drosophila transgenic lines to look for potential pre- and post-synaptic partners of the dFB to discover new structures with a possible role in the neural mechanisms of sleep regulation in Drosophila.

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