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Human CED-6 encodes a functional homologue of the Caenorhabditis elegans engulfment protein CED-6.


Liu, Q A; Hengartner, M O (1999). Human CED-6 encodes a functional homologue of the Caenorhabditis elegans engulfment protein CED-6. Current Biology, 9(22):1347-1350.

Abstract

The rapid engulfment of apoptotic cells is a specialized innate immune response used by organisms to remove apoptotic cells. In mammals, several receptors that recognize apoptotic cells have been identified; molecules that transduce signals from these receptors to downstream cytoskeleton molecules have not been found, however [1] [2] [3]. Our previous analysis of the engulfment gene ced-6 in Caenorhabditis elegans has suggested that CED-6 is an adaptor protein that participates in a signal transduction pathway that mediates the specific recognition and engulfment of apoptotic cells [1]. Here, we describe our isolation and characterization of a human cDNA encoding a protein, hCED-6, with strong sequence similarity to C. elegans CED-6. As is the case with the worm protein, hCED-6 contains a phosphotyrosine-binding (PTB) domain and potential Src-homology domain 3 (SH3) binding sites. Both CED-6 and hCED-6 contain a predicted coiled-coil domain in the middle region. The hCED-6 protein lacks the extended carboxyl terminus found in worm CED-6; this carboxy-terminal extension appears not to be essential for CED-6 function in C. elegans, however. Overexpression of hCED-6 rescues the engulfment defect of ced-6 mutants in C. elegans significantly, suggesting that hCED-6 is a functional homologue of C. elegans CED-6. Human ced-6 is expressed widely in most human tissues. Thus, CED-6, and the CED-6 signal transduction pathway, might be conserved from C. elegans to humans and are present in most, if not all, human tissues.

Abstract

The rapid engulfment of apoptotic cells is a specialized innate immune response used by organisms to remove apoptotic cells. In mammals, several receptors that recognize apoptotic cells have been identified; molecules that transduce signals from these receptors to downstream cytoskeleton molecules have not been found, however [1] [2] [3]. Our previous analysis of the engulfment gene ced-6 in Caenorhabditis elegans has suggested that CED-6 is an adaptor protein that participates in a signal transduction pathway that mediates the specific recognition and engulfment of apoptotic cells [1]. Here, we describe our isolation and characterization of a human cDNA encoding a protein, hCED-6, with strong sequence similarity to C. elegans CED-6. As is the case with the worm protein, hCED-6 contains a phosphotyrosine-binding (PTB) domain and potential Src-homology domain 3 (SH3) binding sites. Both CED-6 and hCED-6 contain a predicted coiled-coil domain in the middle region. The hCED-6 protein lacks the extended carboxyl terminus found in worm CED-6; this carboxy-terminal extension appears not to be essential for CED-6 function in C. elegans, however. Overexpression of hCED-6 rescues the engulfment defect of ced-6 mutants in C. elegans significantly, suggesting that hCED-6 is a functional homologue of C. elegans CED-6. Human ced-6 is expressed widely in most human tissues. Thus, CED-6, and the CED-6 signal transduction pathway, might be conserved from C. elegans to humans and are present in most, if not all, human tissues.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Molecular Life Sciences
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
Language:English
Date:18 November 1999
Deposited On:11 Feb 2008 12:20
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 12:17
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:0960-9822
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/S0960-9822(00)80061-5
PubMed ID:10574771

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