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J Comp Neurol. 2001 Jan 1;429(1):127-43.

IDA-1, a Caenorhabditis elegans homolog of the diabetic autoantigens IA-2 and phogrin, is expressed in peptidergic neurons in the worm.

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Barbara Davis Center for Childhood Diabetes, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, Denver, Colorado 80262, USA.


The closely related mammalian proteins IA-2 and phogrin are protein tyrosine phosphatase-like receptor proteins spanning the membrane of dense core vesicles of neuroendocrine tissues. They are of interest as molecular components of the secretory machinery and as major targets of autoimmunity in type I diabetes mellitus. The Caenorhabditis elegans genome has a single copy of an IA-2/phogrin homolog ida-1 III (islet cell diabetic autoantigen), which encodes the ida-1 (B0244.2) gene product as a series of 12 exons over a 10-kb region of chromosome III. The full-length sequence of the ida-1 cDNA encoded a 767-amino acid type 1 transmembrane protein of 87 kDa. The PTP catalytic site consensus sequence of IDA-1, like IA-2 and phogrin, diverged and would not be active. Expression of green fluorescent protein (GFP) under the ida-1 gene promoter showed activity in a subset of around 30 neurons with sensory functions and the uv1 cells of the vulva in hermaphrodites. Males showed additional expression in male-specific neurons. In situ experiments in rat brain showing the distribution of IA-2 and phogrin suggested a complimentary and overlapping pattern compared with the proprotein convertases PC1 and PC2. In C. elegans, IDA-1-expressing cells comprised a subset of those expressing the PC2 homolog KPC-2 (C51E3. 7), consistent with IDA-1 being a component of neuropeptide-containing dense core vesicles. The results support the hypothesis that C. elegans IDA-1 is the functional homolog of IA-2 and phogrin in mammals. Analysis of the function of IDA-1 should contribute to our understanding of the function of these proteins in signal transduction, vesicle locomotion, and exocytosis.

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