Molecular and pharmacological properties of insect biogenic amine receptors: Lessons from Drosophila melanogaster and Apis mellifera

Authors

  • Wolfgang Blenau,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Zoology, University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand
    Current affiliation:
    1. Institut für Biochemie und Biologie, Universität Potsdam, Postfach 601553, D-14415 Potsdam, Germany
    • Institut für Biochemie und Biologie, Universität Potsdam, Postfach 601553, D-14415 Potsdam, Germany
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  • Arnd Baumann

    1. Institut für Biologische Informationsverarbeitung, Forschungszentrum Jülich, Jülich, Germany
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  • Institution from which paper emanated: Department of Zoology, University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand

Abstract

In the central nervous system (CNS) of both vertebrates and invertebrates, biogenic amines are important neuroactive molecules. Physiologically, they can act as neurotransmitters, neuromodulators, or neurohormones. Biogenic amines control and regulate various vital functions including circadian rhythms, endocrine secretion, cardiovascular control, emotions, as well as learning and memory. In insects, amines like dopamine, tyramine, octopamine, serotonin, and histamine exert their effects by binding to specific membrane proteins that primarily belong to the superfamily of G�protein–coupled receptors. Especially in Drosophila melanogaster and Apis mellifera considerable progress has been achieved during the last few years towards the understanding of the functional role of these receptors and their intracellular signaling systems. In this review, the present knowledge on the biochemical, molecular, and pharmacological properties of biogenic amine receptors from Drosophila and Apis will be summarized. Arch. Insect Biochem. Physiol. 48:13–38, 2001. © 2001 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

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