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Reviews in the Neurosciences

Editor-in-Chief: Huston, Joseph P.

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Volume 24, Issue 5


The role of the actin cytoskeleton in regulating Drosophila behavior

Shamsideen A. Ojelade
  • Department of Psychiatry, UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, Dallas, TX 75235, USA
  • Program in Neuroscience, UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, Dallas, TX 75235, USA
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Summer F. Acevedo / Adrian Rothenfluh
  • Corresponding author
  • Department of Psychiatry, UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, Dallas, TX 75235, USA
  • Program in Neuroscience, UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, Dallas, TX 75235, USA
  • Email
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
Published Online: 2013-09-28 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/revneuro-2013-0017


Over the past decade, the function of the cytoskeleton has been studied extensively in developing and mature neurons. Actin, a major cytoskeletal protein, is indispensable for the structural integrity and plasticity of neurons and their synapses. Disruption of actin dynamics has significant consequence for neurons, neuronal circuits, and the functions they govern. In particular, cell adhesion molecules, members of the Rho family of GTPases, and actin-binding proteins are important modulators of actin dynamics and neuronal as well as behavioral plasticity. In this review, we discuss recent advances in Drosophila that highlight the importance of actin regulatory proteins in mediating fly behaviors such as circadian rhythm, courtship behavior, learning and memory, and the development of drug addiction.

Keywords: actin; behavior; Drosophila; genetics


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About the article

Shamsideen A. Ojelade

Shamsideen Ojelade received his B.S. in Biology from the University of Houston. He is presently a graduate student in the neuroscience program and works in the laboratory of Dr. Rothenfluh, Department of Psychiatry, University of Texas-Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, Texas. He has received funding from NIH through a NIDA institutional grant (T32 DA7290) and currently is completing his thesis dissertation under an F31-NIAAA fellowship (F31 AA021340).

Summer F. Acevedo

Summer F. Acevedo graduated with a B.A. in Biochemistry from the University of Northern Colorado, Greeley, CO and a PhD in Genetics from Texas A&M University, College Station, TX. She then completed a NIDA post-doctoral fellowship in Behavioral Neuroscience at Oregon Health & Science University in Portland, OR, before moving on as faculty in the Department of Pharmacology, Physiology & Toxicology, Program in Psychology at Ponce School of Medicine & Health Sciences in Puerto Rico. She is currently on the faculty in the Department of Psychiatry at UT Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX.

Adrian Rothenfluh

Adrian Rothenfluh received his Diploma in molecular biology from the Biocenter, University of Basel, Switzerland, and his PhD in genetics from Rockefeller University in New York. Following postdoctoral training at UCSF, he became an assistant professor in the Department of Psychiatry at UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, TX in 2007. He is funded by the NIH (R01AA019526), the Brain & Behavior Research Foundation, and the Endowed Scholars Program at UTSW.

Corresponding author: Adrian Rothenfluh, Department of Psychiatry, UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, Dallas, TX 75235, USA; and Program in Neuroscience, UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, Dallas, TX 75235, USA, e-mail:

Received: 2013-05-18

Accepted: 2013-08-21

Published Online: 2013-09-28

Published in Print: 2013-10-01

Citation Information: Reviews in the Neurosciences, Volume 24, Issue 5, Pages 471–484, ISSN (Online) 2191-0200, ISSN (Print) 0334-1763, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/revneuro-2013-0017.

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