where tomorrow’s science begins today
An Autonomous Institution, Ministry of Education, Govt. of India
Seminars and Colloquia


Drink up my little worm, it’s the dopamine that makes you go in circles 
Thu, Apr 25, 2019,   04:00 PM to 05:00 PM at Seminar Room 34, 2nd Floor, Main Building

Dr. Kavita Babu
Department of Biological Sciences Indian Institute of Science Education & Research (IISER), Mohali


Dopamine (DA), a neurotransmitter of the central nervous system, regulates diverse neuronal processes and its dysregulation leads to multiple neurological diseases and addictions. In C. elegans DA signaling is regulated through the G-protein coupled receptor, DOP-2. DOP-2 acts as an autoreceptor and has been reported to play a role in C. elegans learning and memory. I will describe the role of DOP-2 in the regulation of ethanol- dependent motor signaling in C. elegans. In the presence of ethanol, mutants in dop-2 display distinct phenotypes where they show defects in movement, these defects are largely seen to impact the posterior region of the animal’s body. These ethanol dependent movement defects were rescued by expressing the DOP-2 gene under its native promoter. Further, wild-type animals exposed to exogenous dopamine and ethanol showed a phenotype similar to that seen in dop-2 mutants treated with ethanol. I will go on to discuss the molecular pathway and neural circuit through which DOP-2 affects ethanol dependent movement. Our results indicate that loss of DOP-2 causes increased acetylcholine release at the C. elegans neuromuscular junction through the release of neuropeptides from the posterior neuron of the animal. Our study elucidates the role of DA autoreceptors in the regulation of motor signaling in C. elegans and could have implications in further understanding the relationship between dopamine and ethanol sensitivity