Molecular components of store-operated calcium entry have been identified in the recent past and consist of the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) membrane-resident calcium sensor STIM and the plasma membrane-localized calcium channel Orai. The physiological function of STIM and Orai is best defined in vertebrate immune cells. However, genetic studies with RNAi strains in Drosophila suggest a role in neuronal development and function. We generated a CRISPR-Cas-mediated deletion for the gene encoding STIM in Drosophila (dSTIM), which we demonstrate is larval lethal. To study STIM function in neurons, we merged the CRISPR-Cas9 method with the UAS-GAL4 system to generate either tissue- or cell type-specific inducible STIM knockouts (KOs). Our data identify an essential role for STIM in larval dopaminergic cells. The molecular basis for this cell-specific requirement needs further investigation.
Keywords: Orai; SOCE; hypoderm; null allele; tyrosine hydroxylase.
Copyright © 2017 Pathak et al.