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Insect sensory arrestins act to desensitize visual and olfactory signal transduction pathways, as evidenced by the phenotypic effects of mutations in the genes encoding both Arr1 and Arr2 in Drosophila melanogaster. To assess whether such arrestins play similar roles in other, more medically relevant dipterans, we examined the ability of Anopheles gambiae sensory arrestin homologs AgArr1 and AgArr2 to rescue phenotypes associated with an olfactory deficit observed in D. melanogaster arrestin mutants. Of these, only AgArr1 facilitated significant phenotypic rescue of the corresponding Drosophila arr mutant olfactory phenotype, consistent with the view that functional orthology is shared by these Arr1 homologs. These results represent the first step in the functional characterization of AgArr1, which is highly expressed in olfactory appendages of An. gambiae in which it is likely to play an essential role in olfactory signal transduction. In addition to providing insight into the common elements of the peripheral olfactory system of dipterans, this work validates the importance of AgArr1 as a potential target for novel anti-malaria strategies that focus on olfactory-based behaviors in An. gambiae.