ZFIN ID: ZDB-PUB-180913-16
Zebrafish expression reporters and mutants reveal that the IgSF cell adhesion molecule Dscamb is required for feeding and survival
Julien, D.P., Chan, A.W., Barrios, J., Mathiaparanam, J., Douglass, A., Wolman, M.A., Sagasti, A.
Date: 2018
Source: Journal of neurogenetics   32(4): 336-352 (Journal)
Registered Authors: Sagasti, Alvaro, Wolman, Marc
Keywords: Dscam, Zebrafish, behavior, expression pattern, feeding, genome editing
MeSH Terms:
  • Animals
  • Animals, Genetically Modified
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules/metabolism*
  • Feeding Behavior/physiology*
  • Zebrafish
  • Zebrafish Proteins/metabolism*
PubMed: 30204029 Full text @ J. Neurogenet.
Down syndrome cell adhesion molecules (DSCAMs) are broadly expressed in nervous systems and play conserved roles in programmed cell death, neuronal migration, axon guidance, neurite branching and spacing, and synaptic targeting. However, DSCAMs appear to have distinct functions in different vertebrate animals, and little is known about their functions outside the retina. We leveraged the genetic tractability and optical accessibility of larval zebrafish to investigate the expression and function of a DSCAM family member, dscamb. Using targeted genome editing to create transgenic reporters and loss-of-function mutant alleles, we discovered that dscamb is expressed broadly throughout the brain, spinal cord, and peripheral nervous system, but is not required for overall structural organization of the brain. Despite the absence of obvious anatomical defects, homozygous dscamb mutants were deficient in their ability to ingest food and rarely survived to adulthood. Thus, we have discovered a novel function for dscamb in feeding behavior. The mutant and transgenic lines generated in these studies will provide valuable tools for identifying the molecular and cellular bases of these behaviors.