Neurons utilize plasticity of dendritic arbors as part of a larger suite of adaptive plasticity mechanisms. This explicitly manifests with motoneurons in the Drosophila embryo and larva, where dendritic arbors are exclusively postsynaptic and are used as homeostatic devices, compensating for changes in synaptic input through adapting their growth and connectivity. We recently identified reactive oxygen species (ROS) as novel plasticity signals instrumental in this form of dendritic adjustment. ROS correlate with levels of neuronal activity and negatively regulate dendritic arbor size. Here, we investigated NADPH oxidases as potential sources of such activity-regulated ROS and implicate Dual Oxidase (but not Nox), which generates hydrogen peroxide extracellularly. We further show that the aquaporins Bib and Drip, but not Prip, are required for activity-regulated ROS-mediated adjustments of dendritic arbor size in motoneurons. These results suggest a model whereby neuronal activity leads to activation of the NADPH oxidase Dual Oxidase, which generates hydrogen peroxide at the extracellular face; aquaporins might then act as conduits that are necessary for these extracellular ROS to be channeled back into the cell where they negatively regulate dendritic arbor size.
bioRxiv Subject Collection: Neuroscience