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Development. 2004 Jan;131(1):93-104. Epub 2003 Dec 3.

Control of the proliferation versus meiotic development decision in the C. elegans germline through regulation of GLD-1 protein accumulation.

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Department of Genetics, Washington University School of Medicine, Saint Louis, MO 63110, USA.


Maintenance of the stem cell population in the C. elegans germline requires GLP-1/Notch signaling. We show that this signaling inhibits the accumulation of the RNA binding protein GLD-1. In a genetic screen to identify other genes involved in regulating GLD-1 activity, we identified mutations in the nos-3 gene, the protein product of which is similar to the Drosophila translational regulator Nanos. Our data demonstrate that nos-3 promotes GLD-1 accumulation redundantly with gld-2, and that nos-3 functions genetically downstream or parallel to fbf, an inhibitor of GLD-1 translation. We show that the GLD-1 accumulation pattern is important in controlling the proliferation versus meiotic development decision, with low GLD-1 levels allowing proliferation and increased levels promoting meiotic entry.

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