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

Receptor tyrosine kinase signaling and primordial germ cell development.

Primordial germ cells (PGCs) give rise to sperms and eggs. Their development is crucial to species propagation and has to be precisely controlled. Studies in several model organisms have identified many genes involved in the specification and guided migration of PGCs. However, the mechanisms governing the behaviors of these unique cells remain to be investigated. Interestingly, PGCs share certain cellular properties with metastasizing cancer cells including proliferation, invasion of other tissues, survival and migration. Recently we have shown that in Drosophila the receptor tyrosine kinase Torso activates both STAT and Ras during the early phase of PGC development. In later stages, activation of both STAT and Ras, likely by other molecules, is required continuously for PGC migration. The requirement for RTK suggests molecular conservation between flies and mice in PGC development and also suggests that germ cells and cancer cells share certain intracellular signaling strategies.[1]


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