The GEX-2 and GEX-3 proteins are required for tissue morphogenesis and cell migrations in C. elegans
Program in Molecular Medicine and Cell Biology
*Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing; Amino Acid Sequence; Animals; Caenorhabditis elegans; Caenorhabditis elegans Proteins; purification; Carrier Proteins; Cell Compartmentation; *Cell Movement; Conserved Sequence; *Drosophila Proteins; Genes, Helminth; Molecular Sequence Data; Morphogenesis; Oviposition; Sequence Homology, Amino Acid; rac GTP-Binding Proteins
Life Sciences | Medicine and Health Sciences
During body morphogenesis precisely coordinated cell movements and cell shape changes organize the newly differentiated cells of an embryo into functional tissues. Here we describe two genes, gex-2 and gex-3, whose activities are necessary for initial steps of body morphogenesis in Caenorhabditis elegans. In the absence of gex-2 and gex-3 activities, cells differentiate properly but fail to become organized. The external hypodermal cells fail to spread over and enclose the embryo and instead cluster on the dorsal side. Postembryonically gex-3 activity is required for egg laying and for proper morphogenesis of the gonad. GEX-2 and GEX-3 proteins colocalize to cell boundaries and appear to directly interact. GEX-2 and GEX-3 are highly conserved, with vertebrate homologs implicated in binding the small GTPase Rac and a GEX-3 Drosophila homolog, HEM2/NAP1/KETTE, that interacts genetically with Rac pathway mutants. Our findings suggest that GEX-2 and GEX-3 may function at cell boundaries to regulate cell migrations and cell shape changes required for proper morphogenesis and development.
DOI of Published Version
Genes Dev. 2002 Mar 1;16(5):620-32. Link to article on publisher's site
Genes and development
Soto, Martha C.; Qadota, Hiroshi; Kasuya, Katsuhisa; Inoue, Makiko; Tsuboi, Daisuke; Mello, Craig C.; and Kaibuchi, Kozo, "The GEX-2 and GEX-3 proteins are required for tissue morphogenesis and cell migrations in C. elegans" (2002). Open Access Articles. 588.