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|Title: ||Characterization of the Role of Neuralized in Delta Endocytosis and Notch Signalling|
|Authors: ||Skwarek, Lara Casandra|
|Advisor: ||Boulianne, Gabrielle|
|Department: ||Molecular and Medical Genetics|
|Issue Date: ||28-Sep-2009|
|Abstract: ||Development requires the acquisition of different cell fates. A major conserved pathway required for cell fate determination is the Notch signalling pathway. Neuralized is a key regulator of the Notch pathway and is essential for embryonic development in Drosophila melanogaster. I have been studying the role of Neuralized during Drosophila development, focusing on the regulation of this protein.
Neuralized is an E3 ubiquitin ligase that targets Notch ligands for ubiquitination and endocytosis in the signal sending cell. This endocytic event is required for signal transduction, and cells lacking Neuralized fail to signal through Notch. I have identified a conserved interaction between Neuralized and phosphoinositides that is essential for the ability of Neuralized to promote ligand endocytosis and Notch signalling. Interactions between Neuralized and phosphoinositides are not required for ligand ubiquitination, identifying a role for Neuralized in downstream aspects of ligand trafficking. I have also determined that Neuralized is dynamically regulated through a combination of tissue specific expression, subcellular trafficking, protein interactions and posttranslational modification.
Neuralized contains two related protein domains of unknown function called Neuralized homology repeats (NHR). To gain insight into the function of the NHR domain, I characterized another NHR containing protein, CG3894. CG3894 is required for development and preliminary data indicate that NHR domains dimerize, suggesting a possible interaction between Neuralized and CG3894.
The study of Neuralized in Drosophila has contributed to our understanding of this essential protein both at a developmental and cellular level, and has provided a means through which to ask questions about regulation of Notch signalling in a relatively simple context. Given the importance of Notch signalling to development, and contributions that aberrations in signalling make to cancer and diseases of the nervous system, expanding our understanding of the regulation of Notch signalling is essential to understanding how this important pathway functions.|
|Appears in Collections:||Doctoral|
Department of Molecular Genetics - Doctoral theses
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