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Ann Anat. 2005 Nov;187(5-6):539-53.

BicD-dependent localization processes: from Drosophilia development to human cell biology.

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Institute of Cell Biology, University of Berne, Baltzerstrasse 4, 3012 Bern, Switzerland.


Many eukaryotic cells depend on proper cell polarization for their development and physiological function. The establishment of these polarities often involve the subcellular localization of a specific subset of proteins, RNAs and organelles. In Drosophila, the microtubule-dependent BicD (BicaudalD) localization machinery is involved in the proper localization of mRNA during oogenesis and embryogenesis and the proper positioning of the oocyte and photoreceptor nuclei. BicD acts together with the minus-end directed motor dynein as well as Egl and Lis-1. The finding that the mammalian homologs of BicD function in retrograde Golgi-to-ER transport has supported the view that BicD may be part of a repeatedly used and evolutionary conserved localization machinery. In this review we focus on the various processes in which BicD is involved during Drosophilian development and in mammals. In addition, we evaluate the interactions between BicD, the dynein localization machinery and associated factors.

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