The protein interacting with C kinase 1 (PICK1) protein was first identified as a novel binding partner for protein kinase C. PICK1 contains a membrane-binding BAR domain and a PDZ domain interacting with many synaptic proteins, including the alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methylisoxazole-4-propionic acid (AMPA) receptor subunit GluR2 and the dopamine transporter. PICK1 is strongly implicated in GluR2 trafficking and synaptic plasticity. In mammals, PICK1 has been characterized extensively in cell culture studies. To study PICK1 in an intact system, we characterized PICK1 expression immunohistochemically in the adult and larval Drosophila central nervous system. PICK1 was found in cell bodies in the subesophageal ganglion, the antennal lobe, the protocerebrum, and the neuroendocrine center pars intercerebralis. The cell types that express PICK1 were identified using GAL4 enhancer trap lines. The PICK1-expressing cells form a subpopulation of neurons. PICK1 immunoreactivity was neither detected in glutamatergic nor in dopaminergic neurons. Also, we observed PICK1 expression in only a few GABAergic neurons, located in the antennal lobe. In contrast, we detected robust PICK1 immunolabeling of peptidergic neurons in the neuroendocrine system, which express the transcription factor DIMM and the amidating enzyme peptidylglycine-alpha-hydroxylating monooxygenase (PHM). The PICK1-positive cells include neurosecretory cells that produce the insulin-like peptide dILP2. PICK1 expression in insulin-producing cells also occurs in mammals, as it was also observed in a rat insulinoma cell line derived from pancreatic beta-cells. At the subcellular level, PICK1 was found in the perinuclear zone but surprisingly not in synaptic domains. We conclude that PICK1 may serve an important role in the neuroendocrine system both in insects and vertebrates.
Journal of Comparative Neurology, 2009, Vol 517, Issue 3, p. 313-32