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

C. elegans VAB-8 and UNC-73 regulate the SAX-3 receptor to direct cell and growth-cone migrations.

During nervous system development, a small number of conserved guidance cues and receptors regulate many axon trajectories. How could a limited number of cues and receptors regulate such complex projection patterns? One way is to modulate receptor function. Here we show that the Caenorhabditis elegans kinesin-related protein VAB-8L, which is necessary and sufficient for posterior cell and growth-cone migrations, directs these migrations by regulating the levels of the guidance receptor SAX-3 (also known as robo). Genetic experiments indicate that VAB-8L and the Rac guanine nucleotide exchange factor activity of UNC-73 (trio) increase the ability of the SLT-1 (slit) and UNC-6 (netrin) guidance pathways to promote posterior guidance. The observations of higher SAX-3 receptor abundance in animals with increasing amounts of VAB-8L, and of physical interactions between UNC-73 and both VAB-8L and the intracellular domain of the SAX-3, support a model whereby VAB-8L directs cell and growth-cone migrations by promoting localization of guidance receptors to the cell surface.[1]


  1. C. elegans VAB-8 and UNC-73 regulate the SAX-3 receptor to direct cell and growth-cone migrations. Watari-Goshima, N., Ogura, K., Wolf, F.W., Goshima, Y., Garriga, G. Nat. Neurosci. (2007) [Pubmed]
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