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Dev Cell. 2001 Oct;1(4):503-14.

Drosophila immune deficiency (IMD) is a death domain protein that activates antibacterial defense and can promote apoptosis.

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Institut de Biologie Moleculaire et Cellulaire, UPR 9022 du CNRS, Strasbourg, France.


We report the molecular characterization of the immune deficiency (imd) gene, which controls antibacterial defense in Drosophila. imd encodes a protein with a death domain similar to that of mammalian RIP (receptor interacting protein), a protein that plays a role in both NF-kappaB activation and apoptosis. We show that imd functions upstream of the DmIKK signalosome and the caspase DREDD in the control of antibacterial peptide genes. Strikingly, overexpression of imd leads to constitutive transcription of these genes and to apoptosis, and both effects are blocked by coexpression of the caspase inhibitor P35. We also show that imd is involved in the apoptotic response to UV irradiation. These data raise the possibility that antibacterial response and apoptosis share common control elements in Drosophila.

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