FMRFamide related peptide ligands activate the **Caenorhabditis elegans** orphan GPCR Y59H11AL.1
Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences
Peptides. - Fayetteville, N.Y.
, p. 1291-1296
G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) are ancient molecules that can sense environmental and physiological signals. Currently, the majority of the predicted Caenorhabditis elegans GPCRs are orphan. Here, we describe the characterization of such an orphan C. elegans GPCR, which is categorized in the tachykinin-like group of receptors. Since the C. elegans genome predicts only one tachykinin-like peptide (SFDRMGGTEFGLM), which could not activate the receptor, we hypothesized that one or some of the numerous FMRFamide related peptides (FaRPs) could be the cognate ligands for this receptor. This hypothesis was based on the suggestion that RFamides may be ancestral neuropeptides, from which a lot of the amidated neuropeptides, including tachykinins, derived. Indeed, we found that the orphan receptor encoded by the Y59H11AL.1 gene is activated by several C. elegans neuropeptides, including SPMERSAMVRFamide. These peptides activate the receptor in a concentration-dependent way.²