TitleSerotonin is essential for eye regeneration in planaria Schmidtea mediterranea.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2019
AuthorsSarkar A, Mukundan N, Sowndarya S, Dubey VKumar, Babu R, Lakshmanan V, Rangiah K, Panicker MM, Palakodeti D, Subramanian SPeruvemba, Ramaswamy S
JournalFEBS Lett
Date Published2019 Sep 17

Planaria is an ideal system to study factors involved in regeneration and tissue homeostasis. Little is known about the role of metabolites and small molecules in stem cell maintenance and lineage specification in planarians. Using liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry (LC-MS)-based quantitative metabolomics, we determined the relative levels of metabolites in stem cells, progenitors, and differentiated cells of the planarian Schmidtea mediterranea. Tryptophan and its metabolic product serotonin are significantly enriched in stem cells and progenitor population. Serotonin biosynthesis in these cells is brought about by a non-canonical enzyme, phenylalanine hydroxylase (PAH). Knockdown of Smed-pah leads to complete disappearance of eyes in regenerating planaria, while exogenous supply of serotonin and its precursor rescue the eyeless phenotype. Our results demonstrate a key role for serotonin in eye regeneration.

Alternate JournalFEBS Lett.
PubMed ID31529697