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Science. 1997 Feb 21;275(5303):1126-9.

Interaction and regulation of subcellular localization of CED-4 by CED-9.

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  • 1Department of Pathology and Comprehensive Cancer Center, The University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, MI 48109, USA.


The Caenorhabditis elegans survival gene ced-9 regulates ced-4 activity and inhibits cell death, but the mechanism by which this occurs is unknown. Through a genetic screen for CED-4-binding proteins, CED-9 was identified as an interacting partner of CED-4. CED-9, but not loss-of-function mutants, associated specifically with CED-4 in yeast or mammalian cells. The CED-9 protein localized primarily to intracellular membranes and the perinuclear region, whereas CED-4 was distributed in the cytosol. Expression of CED-9, but not a mutant lacking the carboxy-terminal hydrophobic domain, targeted CED-4 from the cytosol to intracellular membranes in mammalian cells. Thus, the actions of CED-4 and CED-9 are directly linked, which could provide the basis for the regulation of programmed cell death in C. elegans.

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