Tequila, a Neurotrypsin Ortholog, Regulates Long-Term Memory Formation in Drosophila

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Science  11 Aug 2006:
Vol. 313, Issue 5788, pp. 851-853
DOI: 10.1126/science.1127215

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Mutations in the human neurotrypsin gene are associated with autosomal recessive mental retardation. To further understand the pathophysiological consequences of the lack of this serine protease, we studied Tequila (Teq), the Drosophila neurotrypsin ortholog, using associative memory as a behavioral readout. We found that teq inactivation resulted in a long-term memory (LTM)–specific defect. After LTM conditioning of wild-type flies, teq expression transiently increased in the mushroom bodies. Moreover, specific inhibition of teq expression in adult mushroom bodies resulted in a reversible LTM defect. Hence, the Teq pathway is essential for information processing in Drosophila.

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