A Database for Insect Neuropeptide Research

Search the database for information about the various species and neuropeptides of interest

Insect Neuropeptides - Allatostatin CC


Genes encoding allatostatin CC (AST-CC) were discovered relatively recently following a search of various arthropod genomes (Veenstra, 2009). The gene encoding AST-CC is a paralog of the allatostatin C (AST-C) gene. Both these genes are homologous to the vertebrate somatostatins. Interestingly, AST-CC encoding precursors have a signal anchor instead of the N-terminal signal peptide in several arthropods including Drosophila, tsetse flies, Zootermopsis nevadensis and Procambarus clarkii (Veenstra, 2015). Thus, AST-CC may function in a juxtacrine manner as opposed to an endocrine or paracrine factor in these species. However, AST-CC precursors in other species such as Tribolium castaneum, Rhodnius prolixus and Apis mellifera have a classical signal peptide. Like AST-C, arthropod AST-CCs contains two cysteine residues, which suggests that the peptide becomes cyclized by a disulfide bridge. In T. castaneum, there is a single somatostatin-like GPCR, which is activated by both AST-C and AST-CC; however, T. castaneum AST-C is a bit more potent (EC50 value = 25 nM) than AST-CC (EC50 value = 105.7 nM) (Audsley et al., 2013).


In D. melanogaster, AST-CC is co-expressed with CCAP, AstB and bursicon in bilaterally paired neurons in each of the four abdominal neuromeres in the larvae. These neurons are important in initiating the switch from pre-ecdysis to ecdysis behavior (Kim et al., 2015).


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  • Audsley, N., Vandersmissen, H.P., Weaver, R., Dani, P., Matthews, J., Down, R., Vuerinckx, K., Kim, Y.J., Vanden Broeck, J., 2013. Characterisation and tissue distribution of the PISCF allatostatin receptor in the red flour beetle, Tribolium castaneum. Insect Biochem. Mol. Biol. 43, 65–74. doi:10.1016/j.ibmb.2012.09.007
  • Kim, D.-H., Han, M.-R., Lee, G., Lee, S.S., Kim, Y.-J., Adams, M.E., 2015. Rescheduling Behavioral Subunits of a Fixed Action Pattern by Genetic Manipulation of Peptidergic Signaling. PLOS Genet. 11, e1005513. doi:10.1371/journal.pgen.1005513
  • Veenstra, J. a., 2015. The power of next-generation sequencing as illustrated by the neuropeptidome of the crayfish Procambarus clarkii. Gen. Comp. Endocrinol. doi:10.1016/j.ygcen.2015.06.013
  • Veenstra, J. a., 2009. Allatostatin C and its paralog allatostatin double C: The arthropod somatostatins. Insect Biochem. Mol. Biol. 39, 161–170. doi:10.1016/j.ibmb.2008.10.014