DeLaney, Kellen, et al. “Mass spectrometry profiling and quantitation of changes in circulating hormones secreted over time in Cancer borealis hemolymph due to feeding behavior.” Analytical and bioanalytical chemistry 414.1 (2022): 533-543. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00216-021-03479-1
The crustacean stomatogastric ganglion (STG) is a valuable model for understanding circuit dynamics in neuroscience as it contains a small number of neurons, all easily distinguishable and most of which contribute to two complementary feeding-related neural circuits. These circuits are modulated by numerous neuropeptides, with many gaining access to the STG as hemolymph-transported hormones. Previous work characterized neuropeptides in the hemolymph of the crab Cancer borealis but was limited by low peptide abundance in the presence of a complex biological matrix and the propensity for rapid peptide degradation. To improve their detection, a data-independent acquisition (DIA) mass spectrometry (MS) method was implemented. This approach improved the number of neuropeptides detected by approximately twofold and showed greater reproducibility between experimental and biological replicates. This method was then used to profile neuropeptides at different stages of the feeding process, including hemolymph from crabs that were unfed, or 0 min, 15 min, 1 h, and 2 h post-feeding. The results show differences both in the presence and relative abundance of neuropeptides at the various time points. Additionally, 96 putative neuropeptide sequences were identified with de novo sequencing, indicating there may be more key modulators within this system than is currently known. These results suggest that a distinct cohort of neuropeptides provides modulation to the STG at different times in the feeding process, providing groundwork for targeted follow-up electrophysiological studies to better understand the functional role of circulating hormones in the neural basis of feeding behavior.