Octopamine receptor OAMB is required for ovulation in Drosophila melanogaster

Dev Biol. 2003 Dec 1;264(1):179-90. doi: 10.1016/j.ydbio.2003.07.018.


Octopamine is a major monoamine in invertebrates and affects many physiological processes ranging from energy metabolism to complex behaviors. Octopamine binds to receptors located on various cell types and activates distinct signal transduction pathways to produce these diverse effects. We previously identified one of the Drosophila octopamine receptors named OAMB that produces increases in cAMP and intracellular Ca2+ upon ligand binding. It is expressed at high levels in the brain. To explore OAMB's physiological roles, we generated deletions in the OAMB locus. The resultant oamb mutants were viable without gross anatomical defects. The oamb females displayed normal courtship and copulation; however, they were impaired in ovulation with many mature eggs retained in their ovaries. RT-PCR, in situ hybridization, and expression of a reporter gene revealed that OAMB was also expressed in the thoracicoabdominal ganglion, the female reproductive system, and mature eggs in the ovary. Moreover, analysis of various alleles pinpointed the requirement for OAMB in the body, but not in the brain, for female fecundity. The novel expression pattern of OAMB and its genetic resource described in this study will help advance our understanding on how the neuromodulatory or endocrine system controls reproductive physiology and behavior.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain / cytology
  • Brain / metabolism
  • Drosophila Proteins / genetics
  • Drosophila Proteins / metabolism*
  • Drosophila melanogaster / anatomy & histology
  • Drosophila melanogaster / physiology*
  • Female
  • Genes, Reporter
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Infertility, Female
  • Male
  • Mutation
  • Octopamine / metabolism
  • Ovary / cytology
  • Ovary / metabolism
  • Ovulation / physiology*
  • Phenotype
  • Receptors, Biogenic Amine / genetics
  • Receptors, Biogenic Amine / metabolism*
  • Receptors, Neurotransmitter / genetics
  • Receptors, Neurotransmitter / metabolism*
  • Tissue Distribution


  • Drosophila Proteins
  • OAMB protein, Drosophila
  • Receptors, Biogenic Amine
  • Receptors, Neurotransmitter
  • norsynephrine receptor
  • Octopamine