A search for Drosophila neural precursor genes identifies ran

Roxy Senior, Sanjiv Kaul, Prem Soman, Avijit Lahiri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

9 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The Drosophila ran gene has been isolated in a differential cDNA screen designed to identify genes that are dynamically expressed in embryonic neuroblasts. The guanine triphosphate (GTP)-binding Ran protein, a member of the Ras superfamily, has been shown to participate in a variety of transport related processes in other organisms. Drosophila ran codes for a 216 amino acid (aa) protein that shares 78% and 86% identity with the yeast and human Ran proteins, respectively. Database searches have identified a second Drosophila ran gene, ran-like. The predicted Ran-like protein shares 59% identity with its isoform. Embryo in situ mRNA localization of ran and ran-like expression reveals that both are maternally expressed; however zygotic ran expression is restricted to central nervous system (CNS) neuroblasts undergoing late lineage formation, while ran-like expression is detected in the developing trachea and salivary gland. To investigate the significance of ran-restricted CNS expression, we have targeted its misexpression to different temporal windows of CNS development. In addition, a dominant-negative mutant form of ran was targeted to the developing CNS and to the larval eye/antenna imaginal disc to assess the role of ran-dependent functions. Embryonic CNS misexpression of the mutant, but not wild-type, ran results in larval death. Neither wild-type nor mutant ran misexpression had any detectable effect on embryonic CNS lineage specification, nuclear transport of a number of CNS-specific transcription factors or axonal guidance. However, expression of the dominant-negative mutant ran in the developing eye/antenna disc did result in a severe adult eye phenotype marked by apoptosis of photoreceptor, cone and pigment cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)67-75
Number of pages9
JournalDevelopment Genes and Evolution
Volume211
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Drosophila
Central Nervous System
ran GTP-Binding Protein
Genes
Imaginal Discs
Retinal Cone Photoreceptor Cells
Cell Nucleus Active Transport
Guanine
Trachea
Salivary Glands
Carrier Proteins
Protein Isoforms
Transcription Factors
Embryonic Structures
Complementary DNA
Yeasts
Databases
Apoptosis
Phenotype
Amino Acids

Keywords

  • Drosophila
  • Embryogenesis
  • Ran
  • Ras superfamily

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Developmental Biology

Cite this

A search for Drosophila neural precursor genes identifies ran. / Senior, Roxy; Kaul, Sanjiv; Soman, Prem; Lahiri, Avijit.

In: Development Genes and Evolution, Vol. 211, No. 2, 2001, p. 67-75.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Senior, Roxy ; Kaul, Sanjiv ; Soman, Prem ; Lahiri, Avijit. / A search for Drosophila neural precursor genes identifies ran. In: Development Genes and Evolution. 2001 ; Vol. 211, No. 2. pp. 67-75.
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