Retrograde signaling systems are fundamental modes of communication synapses utilize to dynamically and adaptively modulate activity. However, the inductive mechanisms that gate retrograde communication in the postsynaptic compartment remain enigmatic. We have investigated retrograde signaling at the Drosophila neuromuscular junction, where three seemingly disparate perturbations to the postsynaptic cell trigger a similar enhancement in presynaptic neurotransmitter release. We show that the same presynaptic genetic machinery and enhancements in active zone structure are utilized by each inductive pathway. However, all three induction mechanisms differ in temporal, translational, and CamKII activity requirements to initiate retrograde signaling in the postsynaptic cell. Intriguingly, pharmacological blockade of postsynaptic glutamate receptors, and not calcium influx through these receptors, is necessary and sufficient to induce rapid retrograde homeostatic signaling through CamKII. Thus, three distinct induction mechanisms converge on the same retrograde signaling system to drive the homeostatic strengthening of presynaptic neurotransmitter release.
Keywords: Drosophila; homeostasis; neuromuscular junction; retrograde signaling; synaptic plasticity.
Copyright © 2017 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.