Identification of novel cis-regulatory regions from the Notch receptor genes lin-12 and glp-1 of Caenorhabditis elegans

Ágnes Regos, Katalin Lengyel, Krisztina Takács-Vellai, Tibor Vellai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Citations (Scopus)


Notch signaling regulates various cellular processes such as growth, proliferation and differentiation, and plays a key role in tissue patterning during animal development. In humans, defects in Notch signaling have been implicated in cancer, stroke, neurodegeneration, as well as learning and memory deficits. The genome of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans encodes two members of the Notch transmembrane receptor family, LIN-12 and GLP-1, which have both unique and shared developmental functions. LIN-12 affects diverse cell fate specification events at certain embryonic and larval stages, including the ABplp lineage (a neuronal precursor), intestinal primordium, gonadal anchor cell and secondary vulval precursor cells. In addition to developmental functions, it also operates in the adult nervous system to control locomotion, memory and chemosensory response. Although lin-12 expression was subjected to intense analysis, it was almost not demonstrable in neurons; occasional lin-12 expression was detected only in the two RIG interneurons of young larvae. Here we identify two cis-regulatory regions from lin-12, both of them are specified by the presence of a conserved EXD/HOX composite binding site. One of these regions is located in the first intron and required for driving transgene expression in vulval precursor cell lineages and specific gonadal cells. The other region is located in the second intron and can confer neuronal expression for lin-12 throughout life. The latter regulatory element is highly conserved in the paralogous glp-1 genomic environment, suggesting redundant developmental and physiological roles for the two Notch paralogs in the C. elegans nervous system.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)66-77
Number of pages12
JournalGene Expression Patterns
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished - Feb 18 2013



  • Caenorhabditis elegans
  • Neuronal expression
  • Notch signaling
  • cis-Regulatory region
  • glp-1
  • lin-12

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Developmental Biology

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