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PLoS Biol. 2012;10(8):e1001367. doi: 10.1371/journal.pbio.1001367. Epub 2012 Aug 7.

CULLIN-3 controls TIMELESS oscillations in the Drosophila circadian clock.

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1
Institut de Neurobiologie Alfred Fessard, CNRS UPR3294, Gif-sur-Yvette, France.

Abstract

Eukaryotic circadian clocks rely on transcriptional feedback loops. In Drosophila, the PERIOD (PER) and TIMELESS (TIM) proteins accumulate during the night, inhibit the activity of the CLOCK (CLK)/CYCLE (CYC) transcriptional complex, and are degraded in the early morning. The control of PER and TIM oscillations largely depends on post-translational mechanisms. They involve both light-dependent and light-independent pathways that rely on the phosphorylation, ubiquitination, and proteasomal degradation of the clock proteins. SLMB, which is part of a CULLIN-1-based E3 ubiquitin ligase complex, is required for the circadian degradation of phosphorylated PER. We show here that CULLIN-3 (CUL-3) is required for the circadian control of PER and TIM oscillations. Expression of either Cul-3 RNAi or dominant negative forms of CUL-3 in the clock neurons alters locomotor behavior and dampens PER and TIM oscillations in light-dark cycles. In constant conditions, CUL-3 deregulation induces behavioral arrhythmicity and rapidly abolishes TIM cycling, with slower effects on PER. CUL-3 affects TIM accumulation more strongly in the absence of PER and forms protein complexes with hypo-phosphorylated TIM. In contrast, SLMB affects TIM more strongly in the presence of PER and preferentially associates with phosphorylated TIM. CUL-3 and SLMB show additive effects on TIM and PER, suggesting different roles for the two ubiquitination complexes on PER and TIM cycling. This work thus shows that CUL-3 is a new component of the Drosophila clock, which plays an important role in the control of TIM oscillations.

PMID:
22879814
PMCID:
PMC3413713
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pbio.1001367
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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