In Drosophila, there are 14 neurosecretory neurons located in the pars intercerebralis (the fly hypothalamus) that synthesize and secrete 3 of the 8 Drosophila insulin-like peptides (Dilps). Dilps bind to and activate the single Insulin-like tyrosine kinase receptor, which leads to downstream activation of the evolutionarily conserved PI3-kinase growth signaling pathway.

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