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Dev Growth Differ. 1999 Aug;41(4):375-80.

Studies on heat shock proteins in sea urchin development.

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Dipartimento di Biologia Cellulare e dello Sviluppo Alberto Monroy Università di Palermo, Italy.


Work on stress proteins in sea urchin embryos carried out over the last 20 years is reviewed and the following major results are described. Entire sea urchin embryos, if subjected to a rise in temperature at any postblastular stage undergo a wave of heat shock protein (hsp) synthesis and survive. If subjected to the same rise between fertilization and blastula formation, they are not yet able to synthesize hsp and die. Four clones coding for the major hsp, hsp70, have been isolated and sequenced; evidence for the existence of a heat shock factor has been provided, and a mechanism for the developmental regulation of hsp synthesis discussed. Intraembryonic and intracellular hsp location has been described; and a mechanism for achievement of thermotolerance proposed. A chaperonine role for a constitutive mitochondrial hsp56 has been suggested, as well as a role for the constitutive hsp70 in cell division. Heat shock, if preceded by 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-12-acetate (TPA) treatment causes apoptosis.

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