Research Abstract

My laboratory seeks to understand the organization, regulation and outputs of circadian neural circuits in the Drosophila brain. We take advantage of the remarkable molecular genetic methods that are available with this model system. Our principal contributions include (i) identifying roles played by the PDF neuropeptide and its receptor: We have analyzed its role genetically, demonstrated it to be a synchronizer of the molecular clock in individual pacemaker neurons under constant conditions... read more

Selected Publications

  • Liang, X, Ho, MC, Zhang, Y, Li, Y, Wu, MN, Holy, TE, Taghert, PH (2019) Morning and Evening Circadian Pacemakers Independently Drive Central Complex Premotor Centers via a Specific Dopamine Relay.  Neuron. 2019;102(4):843-57 e4. Epub 2019/04/15. PubMed PMID: 30981533; PMCID: PMC6533154.
  • Liang, X, Holy, TE, Taghert, PH (2017) A Series of Suppressive Signals within the Drosophila Circadian Neural Circuit Generates Sequential Daily Outputs. Neuron 2017. June 21; 94(6): 1173-1189.
  • Liang, X, Holy, TE, Taghert, PH (2016) Synchronous Drosophila circadian pacemakers display non-synchronous Ca2+ rhythms in vivo. Science (Wash.). 351: 976-981. DOI: 10/1126.
  • Klose, M, Duvall, L, Li, W, Liang, X, Ren, C, Steinbach, JH, Taghert, PH (2016) Functional Pdf Signaling in the Drosophila Circadian Neural Circuit is Gated by Ral A-Dependent Modulation. Neuron 90(4): 781-794. doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2016.04.002.
  • Park, D., Li, P., Dani, A, Taghert PH (2014) Peptidergic Cell-Specific Synaptotagmins in Drosophila: Localization to Dense-Core Granules and Regulation by the bHLH Protein DIMMED. J Neurosci. 34(39):13195-13207.
  • Duvall, LB, Taghert, PH (2012) The circadian neuropeptide PDF signals preferentially through a specific adenylate cyclase isoform AC3 in M pacemakers of Drosophila. PLoS Biology. 10(6): e1001337.
  • Shafer OT, Kim DJ, Dunbar-Yaffe R, Nicholaev V, Lohse M, Taghert PH (2008) Widespread receptivity to neuropeptide PDF throughout the circadian clock network of Drosophila revealed by realtime cAMP imaging. Neuron. 58:223-237 PMID 18439407.
  • Mertens I, Vandingenen A, Johnson EC, Shafer OT, Li W, Trigg JS, De Loof A, Schoofs L, and Taghert PH (2005) PDF receptor signaling in Drosophila contributes to both circadian and geotactic behaviors. Neuron. 48: 213-219.
  • Lin Y, Han M, Shimada B, Wang L, Gibler TM Amaorone A, Awad T, Stormo GD, Van Gelder RN, Taghert PH (2002) Influence of the period-dependent circadian clock on diurnal, circadian, and aperiodic gene expression in Drosophila melanogaster. Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci USA. 99:9562-9567.
  • Renn SCP, Park J, Rosbash M, Hall JC and Taghert PH (1999) A pdf neuropeptide gene mutation and ablation of PDF-containing neurons each cause severe abnormalities of circadian behavioral rhythms in Drosophila. Cell. 99:791-802.

For a complete list of Dr. Taghert's publications, click here.

Paul Taghert, PhD

Professor of Neuroscience

Washington University
School of Medicine
Campus Box 8108
McDonnell Medical Sciences, 469
St. Louis, MO 63110
(314) 362-3641

Other Information

1975 BA, Biology, Reed College, Portland, OR

1981 PhD, Zoology, University of Washington, Seattle, WA (Advisor: James W. Truman)

1981-1984 Postdoctoral Fellow, Stanford University, Stanford, CA (Advisor: Corey S. Goodman)

Selected Honors

2020 AAAS Fellow

1985-1987 Sloan Foundation Fellowship

1983-1984 NIH Post-Doctoral Fellowship

1981-1982 Muscular Dystrophy Association Fellowship

1980 NIH Graduate Trainee

1976-1979 NSF Pre-Doctoral Fellowship

1975 Class of 1921 Prize, Reed College