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Shared Song Detector Neurons in Drosophila Male and Female Brains Drive Sex-Specific Behaviors

Author(s): Deutsch, David; Clemens, Jan; Thiberge, Stephan Y; Guan, Georgia; Murthy, Mala

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Abstract: Males and females often produce distinct responses to the same sensory stimuli. How such differences arise-at the level of sensory processing or in the circuits that generate behavior-remains largely unresolved across sensory modalities. We address this issue in the acoustic communication system of Drosophila. During courtship, males generate time-varying songs, and each sex responds with specific behaviors. We characterize male and female behavioral tuning for all aspects of song and show that feature tuning is similar between sexes, suggesting sex-shared song detectors drive divergent behaviors. We then identify higher-order neurons in the Drosophila brain, called pC2, that are tuned for multiple temporal aspects of one mode of the male's song and drive sex-specific behaviors. We thus uncover neurons that are specifically tuned to an acoustic communication signal and that reside at the sensory-motor interface, flexibly linking auditory perception with sex-specific behavioral responses.
Publication Date: 7-Oct-2019
Citation: Deutsch, David, Clemens, Jan, Thiberge, Stephan Y, Guan, Georgia, Murthy, Mala. (2019). Shared Song Detector Neurons in Drosophila Male and Female Brains Drive Sex-Specific Behaviors.. Current biology : CB, 29 (19), 3200 - 3215.e5. doi:10.1016/j.cub.2019.08.008
DOI: doi:10.1016/j.cub.2019.08.008
ISSN: 0960-9822
EISSN: 1879-0445
Pages: 3200 - 3215.e5
Language: eng
Type of Material: Journal Article
Journal/Proceeding Title: Current Biology
Version: Author's manuscript

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