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Gene Review

mec-7  -  Protein MEC-7

Caenorhabditis elegans

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High impact information on mec-7

  • Mutations in the gene mec-7 result in touch-insensitive animals whose touch cells lack the 15-protofilament microtubules [1].
  • Selective expression of the dop-1 gene in mechanosensory neurons using the mec-7 promoter rescues the mechanosensory deficit in dop-1 mutant animals [2].
  • Inside the cell, specialized 15-protofilament microtubules composed of mec-12 alpha-tubulin and mec-7 beta-tubulin may be linked to the mechanosensitive channel by stomatin-homologous MEC-2 [3].
  • The antibodies and the mec-7-lacZ transgene were also used to examine mec-7 expression in mutants affecting the generation, differentiation or maintenance of the touch neurons [4].
  • Both a mec-7-lacZ reporter gene and affinity-purified anti-mec-7 antibodies were used to show that mec-7 is expressed primarily in the touch neurons [4].

Biological context of mec-7


Other interactions of mec-7

  • These data suggest that UNC-86/VP16 increases the expression of mec-3 and mec-7 to compensate for the decreased activities of mutant MEC-3 or MEC-7 proteins [9].
  • Expression of the beta 2-tubulin gene is developmentally regulated and the message is found predominantly in adult male worms, whereas the beta 1-tubulin gene is expressed in microfilariae and approximately equal levels of the transcript are found in male and female adult worms [8].


  1. mec-7 is a beta-tubulin gene required for the production of 15-protofilament microtubules in Caenorhabditis elegans. Savage, C., Hamelin, M., Culotti, J.G., Coulson, A., Albertson, D.G., Chalfie, M. Genes Dev. (1989) [Pubmed]
  2. Dopamine modulates the plasticity of mechanosensory responses in Caenorhabditis elegans. Sanyal, S., Wintle, R.F., Kindt, K.S., Nuttley, W.M., Arvan, R., Fitzmaurice, P., Bigras, E., Merz, D.C., Hébert, T.E., van der Kooy, D., Schafer, W.R., Culotti, J.G., Van Tol, H.H. EMBO J. (2004) [Pubmed]
  3. Molecular modeling of mechanotransduction in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. Tavernarakis, N., Driscoll, M. Annu. Rev. Physiol. (1997) [Pubmed]
  4. The mec-7 beta-tubulin gene of Caenorhabditis elegans is expressed primarily in the touch receptor neurons. Hamelin, M., Scott, I.M., Way, J.C., Culotti, J.G. EMBO J. (1992) [Pubmed]
  5. Genetic interactions affecting touch sensitivity in Caenorhabditis elegans. Gu, G., Caldwell, G.A., Chalfie, M. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. (1996) [Pubmed]
  6. Characterization of a beta-tubulin gene and a beta-tubulin gene products of Brugia pahangi. Guénette, S., Prichard, R.K., Klein, R.D., Matlashewski, G. Mol. Biochem. Parasitol. (1991) [Pubmed]
  7. Mutations in the Caenorhabditis elegans beta-tubulin gene mec-7: effects on microtubule assembly and stability and on tubulin autoregulation. Savage, C., Xue, Y., Mitani, S., Hall, D., Zakhary, R., Chalfie, M. J. Cell. Sci. (1994) [Pubmed]
  8. Identification of a novel Brugia pahangi beta-tubulin gene (beta 2) and a 22-nucleotide spliced leader sequence on beta 1-tubulin mRNA. Guénette, S., Prichard, R.K., Matlashewski, G. Mol. Biochem. Parasitol. (1992) [Pubmed]
  9. VP16-activation of the C. elegans neural specification transcription factor UNC-86 suppresses mutations in downstream genes and causes defects in neural migration and axon outgrowth. Sze, J.Y., Liu, Y., Ruvkun, G. Development (1997) [Pubmed]
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