The C domain of netrin UNC-6 silences calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase- and diacylglycerol-dependent axon branching in Caenorhabditis elegans

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Abstract

Second messenger systems mediate neuronal responses to extracellular factors that elicit axon branching, turning, and guidance. We found that mutations in Caenorhabditis elegans that affect components of second messenger systems, a G-protein subunit, phospholipase Cβ, diacylglycerol (DAG) kinase, and calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase (CaMKII), have no obvious effect on axon responses to UNC-6 except in animals in which the N-terminal fragment, UNC-6ΔC, is expressed. In these animals, the mutations enhance or suppress ectopic branching of certain axons. Netrin UNC-6 is an extracellular protein that guides circumferential migrations, and UNC-6ΔC has UNC-6 guidance activity. We propose that the guidance response elicited by the UNC-6 N-terminal domains involves mechanisms that can induce branching that is sensitive to CaMKII- and DAG-dependent signaling, and that the UNC-6 C domain is required in cis to the N-terminal domains to silence the branching and to maintain proper axon morphology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2274-2282
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Neuroscience
Volume22
Issue number6
StatePublished - Mar 15 2002

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Neuroscience(all)

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