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An HMG1-like protein facilitates Wnt signaling in Caenorhabditis elegans

Jiang, Lily I. and Sternberg, Paul W. (1999) An HMG1-like protein facilitates Wnt signaling in Caenorhabditis elegans. Genes and Development, 13 (7). pp. 877-889. ISSN 0890-9369. PMCID PMC316596.

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We show that during Caenorhabditis elegans male spicule development, the specification of a glial versus neuronal cell fate in a canonical neurogenic sublineage is dependent on Wnt signaling. Inactivation of a Wnt signaling pathway mediated by the Wnt receptor LIN-17 transforms the SPD sheath cell into its sister, the SPD neuron. We discovered a new mutant, son-1, that displays this same cell fate transformation. The son-1 mutation enhances the phenotypes of reduction-of-function lin-17 mutants in several developmental processes, including vulva development, somatic gonad development, and male tail patterning. son-1 encodes an HMG1/2-like DNA-binding protein and is localized in all cell nuclei through development as revealed by a GFP reporter construct. Disruption of son-1 function by RNA-mediated interference results in the same spicule defect as caused by overexpression of POP-1, a TCF/LEF class HMG protein known to act downstream of the Wnt signaling pathway. Our results provide in vivo evidence for the functional involvement of an HMG1/2-like protein, SON-1, in Wnt signaling. The sequence nonspecific HMG protein SON-1 and the sequence specific HMG protein POP-1 might both act in the Wnt responding cells to regulate gene transcription in opposite directions.

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URLURL TypeDescription CentralArticle
Sternberg, Paul W.0000-0002-7699-0173
Additional Information:© 1999 by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press. Received December 28, 1998; revised version accepted February 19, 1999. We thank Jane Mendel for the syIs20 him-5 strain, Mike Herman for the lin-17(n698) allele and the hs-lin44constructs, Helen Stewart for the sDf strains and sDfbreak-point mapping data, Rueyling Lin for the hs-pop-1construct, Jennifer Whangbo for the bar-1(mu349) allele, the CGC for strains, and the Sanger center for cosmids and sequencing information. We thank members of our laboratory for discussion and comments on the manuscript. This work was supported by a U.S. Public Health Service grant HD23690 to P.W.S. and by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, with which P.W.S. is an investigator. The publication costs of this article were defrayed in part by payment of page charges. This article must therefore be hereby marked ‘advertisement’ in accordance with 18 USC section 1734 solely to indicate this fact.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI)UNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:Wnt; HMG-1; TCF/LEF; cell fate specification; C. elegans
Issue or Number:7
PubMed Central ID:PMC316596
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20190515-103610812
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Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:95509
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:16 May 2019 02:44
Last Modified:03 Oct 2019 21:14

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