DOI: 10.1073/pnas.2221680120 ISSN: 0027-8424

A cGAL-UAS bipartite expression toolkit for Caenorhabditis elegans sensory neurons

Stephanie Nava, Wilber Palma, Xuan Wan, Jun Young Oh, Shahla Gharib, Han Wang, Jasmin S. Revanna, Minyi Tan, Mark Zhang, Jonathan Liu, Chun-Hao Chen, James S. Lee, Barbara Perry, Paul W. Sternberg
  • Multidisciplinary

Animals integrate sensory information from the environment and display various behaviors in response to external stimuli. In Caenorhabditis elegans hermaphrodites, 33 types of sensory neurons are responsible for chemosensation, olfaction, and mechanosensation. However, the functional roles of all sensory neurons have not been systematically studied due to the lack of facile genetic accessibility. A bipartite cGAL-UAS system has been previously developed to study tissue- or cell-specific functions in C. elegans . Here, we report a toolkit of new cGAL drivers that can facilitate the analysis of a vast majority of the 60 sensory neurons in C. elegans hermaphrodites. We generated 37 sensory neuronal cGAL drivers that drive cGAL expression by cell-specific regulatory sequences or intersection of two distinct regulatory regions with overlapping expression (split cGAL). Most cGAL-drivers exhibit expression in single types of cells. We also constructed 28 UAS effectors that allow expression of proteins to perturb or interrogate sensory neurons of choice. This cGAL-UAS sensory neuron toolkit provides a genetic platform to systematically study the functions of C. elegans sensory neurons.

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