Cell and Tissue Research

, Volume 246, Issue 1, pp 57–62 | Cite as

Choline acetyltransferase-like immunoreactivity in the brain of Drosophila melanogaster

  • Erich Buchner
  • Sigrid Buchner
  • Garrett Crawford
  • William T. Mason
  • Paul M. Salvaterra
  • David B. Sattelle


Using a monoclonal antibody selective for the acetylcholine (ACh)-synthesizing enzyme choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) of Drosophila melanogaster we find ChAT-like immunoreactivity in specific synaptic regions throughout the brain of Drosophila melanogaster apart from the lobes and the peduncle of the mushroom body and most of the first visual neuropile (lamina). Several anatomically well-defined central brain structures exhibit particularly strong binding. Characteristic differential staining patterns are observed for each of the four neuromeres of the optic lobes. Cell bodies appear not to bind this antibody. The prominent features of the distribution of ChAT-like immunoreactivity are paralleled by the distribution of acetylcholine hydrolyzing enzymatic activity as revealed by histochemical staining for acetylcholine esterase (AChE). These results are discussed in comparison with published data on enzyme distribution, choline uptake and ACh receptor binding in the nervous system of Drosophila melanogaster.

Key words

Insect brain Neurotransmitters Immunocytochemistry Drosophila melanogaster 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Erich Buchner
    • 1
  • Sigrid Buchner
    • 1
  • Garrett Crawford
    • 2
  • William T. Mason
    • 3
  • Paul M. Salvaterra
    • 2
  • David B. Sattelle
    • 4
  1. 1.Institut für Genetik und Mikrobiologie der Universität WürzburgFRG
  2. 2.Beckman Research InstituteCity of HopeUSA
  3. 3.AFRC Institute of Animal PhysiologyCambridgeUK
  4. 4.AFRC Unit, Department of ZoologyUniversity of CambridgeUK
  5. 5.Institut für Genetik und Mikrobiologie der Universität WürzburgWürzburgFRG
  6. 6.Dept. of NeurologyBaylor Coll. Med.HoustonUSA

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