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Dev Biol. 2013 Sep 15;381(2):411-22. doi: 10.1016/j.ydbio.2013.06.013. Epub 2013 Jun 14.

The NMRA/NMRAL1 homologue PadA modulates the expression of extracellular cAMP relay genes during aggregation in Dictyostelium discoideum.

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Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine, Centro de Investigaciones Biológicas, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, Ramiro de Maeztu, 9, 28040 Madrid, Spain.


NMRA-like proteins belong to a class of conserved transcriptional regulators that function as direct sensors of the metabolic state of the cell and link basic metabolism to changes in gene expression. PadA was the first NMRA-like protein described in Dictyostelium discoideum and was shown to be necessary for prestalk cell differentiation and correct development. We describe and characterize padA(-) mutant phenotype during the onset of development, which results in the formation of abnormally small territories and impairment of cAMP responses. Transcriptional analysis shows that cAMP-induced gene expression is downregulated in padA(-), particularly the genes that establish the extracellular cAMP relay. The mutant phenotype can be rescued with the constitutive expression of one of these genes, carA, encoding the cAMP receptor. Transcriptional analysis of padA(-)/A15::carA showed that carA maximum mRNA levels were not reached during aggregation. Our data support a regulatory role for PadA on the regulation of extracellular cAMP relay genes during aggregation and suggest that PadA is required to achieve carA full induction.


Development; Dictyostelium; Gene expression; NMRA-like protein; cAMP relay

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