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

Drosophila wnt-1 undergoes a hydrophobic modification and is targeted to lipid rafts, a process that requires porcupine.

Wnt signaling pathways regulate many developmental responses; however, little is known about how Wnt ligands function on a biochemical level. Recent studies have shown that Wnt-3a is palmitoylated before secretion. Here we report that Drosophila Wnt-1 (Wingless) also undergoes a lipid modification. Lipidation occurs in the endoplasmic reticulum and is dependent on Porcupine, a putative O-acyltransferase. After modification, DWnt-1 partitions as a membrane-anchored protein and is sorted into lipid raft detergent-insoluble microdomains. Lipidation, raft targeting, and secretion can be blocked by the addition of 2-bromopalmitate, a competitive inhibitor of O-acyltransferase activity. Based on these results we propose a model whereby lipidation targets Wnt-1 to secretory vesicles that deliver the ligand to specialized microdomains at the cell surface where it can be packaged for secretion.[1]


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