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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

A mouse homologue of Drosophila pins can asymmetrically localize and substitute for pins function in Drosophila neuroblasts.

Asymmetric cell division is a fundamental mechanism used to generate cellular diversity in invertebrates and vertebrates. In Drosophila, asymmetric division of neuroblasts is achieved by the asymmetric segregation of cell fate determinants Prospero and Numb into the basal daughter cell. Asymmetric segregation of cell fate determinants requires an apically localized protein complex that includes Inscuteable, Pins, Bazooka, DmPar-6, DaPKC and Galphai. Pins acts to stabilize the apical complex during neuroblast divisions. Pins interacts and colocalizes with Inscuteable, as well as maintaining its apical localization. We have isolated a mouse homologue of pins ( Pins) and characterized its expression profile. Mouse PINS shares high similarity in sequence and structure with Pins and other Pins-like proteins from mammals. Pins is expressed in many mouse tissues but its expression is enriched in the ventricular zone of the developing central nervous systems. PINS localizes asymmetrically to the apical cortex of mitotic neuroblasts when ectopically expressed in Drosophila embryos. Like Pins, its N-terminal tetratricopeptide repeats can directly interact with the asymmetric localization domain of Insc, and its C-terminal GoLoco-containing region can direct localization to the neuroblast cortex. We further show that Pins can fulfill all aspects of pins function in Drosophila neuroblast asymmetric cell divisions. Our results suggest a conservation of function between the fly and mammalian Pins homologues.[1]


  1. A mouse homologue of Drosophila pins can asymmetrically localize and substitute for pins function in Drosophila neuroblasts. Yu, F., Morin, X., Kaushik, R., Bahri, S., Yang, X., Chia, W. J. Cell. Sci. (2003) [Pubmed]
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