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Mol Biol Cell. 1992 Nov;3(11):1199-213.

Molecular basis of loss-of-function mutations in the glp-1 gene of Caenorhabditis elegans.

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  • 1Department of Biochemistry, University of Wisconsin-Madison 53706.


The glp-1 gene encodes a membrane protein required for inductive cell interactions during development of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. Here we report the molecular characterization of 15 loss-of-function (lf) mutations of glp-1. Two nonsense mutations appear to eliminate glp-1 activity; both truncate the glp-1 protein in its extracellular domain and have a strong loss-of-function phenotype. Twelve missense mutations and one in-frame deletion map to sites within the repeated motifs of the glp-1 protein (10 epidermal growth factor [EGF]-like and 3 LNG repeats extracellularly and 6 cdc10/SWI6, or ankyrin, repeats intracellularly). We find that all three types of repeated motifs are critical to glp-1 function, and two individual EGF-like repeats may have distinct functions. Intriguingly, all four missense mutations in one phenotypic class map to the N-terminal EGF-like repeats and all six missense mutations in a second phenotypic class reside in the intracellular cdc10/SWI6 repeats. These two clusters of mutations may identify functional domains within the glp-1 protein.

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