Worm Breeder's Gazette 13(3): 88 (June 1, 1994)

These abstracts should not be cited in bibliographies. Material contained herein should be treated as personal communication and should be cited as such only with the consent of the author.

Vab-8 rescued: Another gene involved in controlling cell polarity?

Ming-Shiu Hung, Jeffrey C. Way.

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Nelson Biol. Lab., Rutgers University, Piscataway, NJ 08855.

Asymmetric cell division is a common feature of developing organisms. Defects in axon outgrowth and migration might share the same kind of controlling mechanism as asymmetric cell division, since they all fail to sense the right orientation. By screening uncoordinated mutants with defects in axon guidance or cell migration, vab-8 (vab denotes variable abnormal) was found to have detects in asymmetric cell division in addition to its known defect in migration of the CAN cell and the HSN cell (Manser and Wood, 1990) . The phenotype of vab-8 shows withered tail and secondary vulval protrusions. The double mutant of vab-8 ; unc-73 is lethal and vab-8 /+; unc73 /+animals are sometimes uncoordinated (-10% penetrance). The mutant phenotype of unc-73 also shows defects in axon outgrowth and migration and has mild defects in asymmetric cell divisions. In addition, unc-73 shares -200 amino acid region with CDC24 ,which controls the orientation of bud position and the direction of "shmoo" process extension in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Therefore, vab-8 may be part of a directional sensation mechanism within C. elegans. I am trying to clone vab-8 .A single cosmid, C35G11 ,is able to rescue vab-8 ,but a derivative lacking 7Kb does not rescue. Other smaller constructs are being made.

Literature Cited:

Manser, J. and W. B. Wood. 1990. Mutations affecting embryonic cell migrations in Caenorhabditis elegans. Develop. Genet., 11:49-64.

Figure 1