Conserved RNA-binding proteins required for dendrite morphogenesis in Caenorhabditis elegans sensory neurons.
Bottom Line: Homologs of each of these genes were previously identified as important in the Drosophila melanogaster dendritic arborization sensory neurons.Our results suggest that RNA processing, mRNA localization, mRNA stability, and translational control are all important mechanisms that contribute to dendrite morphogenesis, and we present a conserved set of RNA-binding proteins that regulate these processes in diverse animal species.Furthermore, homologs of these genes are expressed in the human brain, suggesting that these RNA-binding proteins are candidate regulators of dendrite development in humans.
Affiliation: Department of Molecular Biology, Colorado College, Colorado Springs, Colorado 80903.Show MeSH
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Mentions: The C. elegans PVD neuron is an excellent model for the molecular genetic investigation of dendrite morphogenesis. The bilateral PVDs, which are located between the epidermis and the body wall muscles, have extensively branched dendritic trees that function as mechanoreceptors, nociceptors, proprioceptors, and cold temperature receptors (Way and Chalfie 1989; Halevi et al. 2002; Tsalik and Hobert 2003; Oren-Suissa et al. 2010; Smith et al. 2010; Albeg et al. 2011; Chatzigeorgiou and Schafer 2011). PVD dendritic trees are stereotypic with primary (1°) branches that project anteriorly and posteriorly from the cell body and menorah- or candelabra-shaped structures extending from the primary branches, which include an orthogonal series of secondary (2°), tertiary (3°), and quaternary (4°) branches (Oren-Suissa et al. 2010; Smith et al. 2010; Figure 1A). Thus, PVD function and morphology are similar to Drosophila da neurons and mammalian polymodal nociceptors (Albeg et al. 2011).
Affiliation: Department of Molecular Biology, Colorado College, Colorado Springs, Colorado 80903.