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Dev Cell. 2003 Jun;4(6):891-901.

Polycomb group regulation of Hox gene expression in C. elegans.

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1
Department of Genetics, Cell Biology, and Development and Developmental Biology Center, University of Minnesota, 321 Church Street SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455, USA.

Abstract

Polycomb group (PcG) chromatin proteins regulate homeotic genes in both animals and plants. In Drosophila and vertebrates, PcG proteins form complexes and maintain early patterns of Hox gene repression, ensuring fidelity of developmental patterning. PcG proteins in C. elegans form a complex and mediate transcriptional silencing in the germline, but no role for the C. elegans PcG homologs in somatic Hox gene regulation has been demonstrated. Surprisingly, we find that the PcG homologs MES-2 [E(Z)] and MES-6 (ESC), along with MES-3, a protein without known homologs, do repress Hox expression in C. elegans. mes mutations cause anteroposterior transformations and disrupt Hox-dependent neuroblast migration. Thus, as in Drosophila, vertebrates, and plants, C. elegans PcG proteins regulate key developmental patterning genes to establish positional identity.

PMID:
12791273
DOI:
10.1016/s1534-5807(03)00135-7
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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