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BMC Dev Biol. 2005 Apr 19;5:8.

C. elegans serine-threonine kinase KIN-29 modulates TGFbeta signaling and regulates body size formation.

Author information

1
Waksman Institute, Department of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry, and Cancer Institute of New Jersey, Rutgers University, Piscataway, NJ 08854-8020, USA. Lisa.Maduzia@umassmed.edu

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

In C. elegans there are two well-defined TGFbeta-like signaling pathways. The Sma/Mab pathway affects body size morphogenesis, male tail development and spicule formation while the Daf pathway regulates entry into and exit out of the dauer state. To identify additional factors that modulate TGFbeta signaling in the Sma/Mab pathway, we have undertaken a genetic screen for small animals and have identified kin-29.

RESULTS:

kin-29 encodes a protein with a cytoplasmic serine-threonine kinase and a novel C-terminal domain. The kinase domain is a distantly related member of the EMK (ELKL motif kinase) family, which interacts with microtubules. We show that the serine-threonine kinase domain has in vitro activity. kin-29 mutations result in small animals, but do not affect male tail morphology as do several of the Sma/Mab signal transducers. Adult worms are smaller than the wild-type, but also develop more slowly. Rescue by kin-29 is achieved by expression in neurons or in the hypodermis. Interaction with the dauer pathway is observed in double mutant combinations, which have been seen with Sma/Mab pathway mutants. We show that kin-29 is epistatic to the ligand dbl-1, and lies upstream of the Sma/Mab pathway target gene, lon-1.

CONCLUSION:

kin-29 is a new modulator of the Sma/Mab pathway. It functions in neurons and in the hypodermis to regulate body size, but does not affect all TGFbeta outputs, such as tail morphogenesis.

PMID:
15840165
PMCID:
PMC1112587
DOI:
10.1186/1471-213X-5-8
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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