Publications

1986
Burke, JM, Irvine KD, Kaneko KJ, Kerker BJ, Oettgen AB, Tierney WM, Williamson CL, Zaug AJ, Cech TR.  1986.  Role of conserved sequence elements 9L and 2 in self-splicing of the Tetrahymena ribosomal RNA precursor. Cell. 45:167-76. AbstractWebsite
Oligonucleotide-directed mutagenesis has been used to alter highly conserved sequences within the intervening sequence (IVS) of the Tetrahymena large ribosomal RNA precursor. Mutations within either sequence element 9L or element 2 eliminate splicing activity under standard in vitro splicing conditions. A double mutant with compensatory base changes in elements 9L and 2 has accurate splicing activity restored. Thus, the targeted nucleotides of elements 9L and 2 base-pair with one another in the IVS RNA, and pairing is important for self-splicing. Mutant splicing activities are restored by increased magnesium ion concentrations, supporting the conclusion that the role of the targeted bases in splicing is primarily structural. Based on the temperature dependence, we propose that a conformational switch involving pairing and unpairing of elements 9L and 2 is required for splicing.
1991
Irvine, KD, Helfand SL, Hogness DS.  1991.  The large upstream control region of the Drosophila homeotic gene Ultrabithorax. Development. 111:407-24. AbstractWebsite
Ultrabithorax (Ubx) is a Drosophila homeotic gene that determines the segmental identities of parts of the thorax and abdomen. Appropriate Ubx transcription requires a long upstream control region (UCR) that is defined genetically by the bithoraxoid (bxd) and postbithorax (pbx) subfunction mutations. We have directly analyzed UCR functions by the examination of beta-galactosidase expression in flies containing Ubx-lacZ fusion genes. 35 kb of UCR DNA confers upon beta-galactosidase an expression pattern that closely parallels normal Ubx expression throughout development. In contrast, 22 kb of UCR DNA confers fewer features of normal Ubx expression, and with 5 kb of UCR DNA the expression pattern has no resemblance to Ubx expression except in the visceral mesoderm. We have also shown that bxd chromosome breakpoint mutants form a comparable 5' deletion series in which the severity of the effect on Ubx expression correlates with the amount of upstream DNA remaining in the mutant. In Ubx-lacZ fusions containing 22 kb of UCR DNA, and in comparable bxd mutants, there is a persistent pair-rule pattern of metameric expression in early development, demonstrating that there are distinct mechanisms with different sequence requirements for the initial activation of Ubx in different metameres. The correction of this pair-rule pattern later in embryogenesis shows that there are also distinct mechanisms for the activation of Ubx at different times during development.
1993
Irvine, KD, Botas J, Jha S, Mann RS, Hogness DS.  1993.  Negative autoregulation by Ultrabithorax controls the level and pattern of its expression. Development. 117:387-99. AbstractWebsite
The Drosophila homeotic gene Ultrabithorax (Ubx) encodes transcriptional regulatory proteins (UBX) that specify thoracic and abdominal segmental identities. Ubx autoregulation was examined by manipulating UBX levels, both genetically and with an inducible transgene, and monitoring the effect of these manipulations on the expression of Ubx and Ubx-lacZ reporter genes. Positive autoregulation by Ubx is restricted to the visceral mesoderm, while in other tissues Ubx negatively autoregulates. In some cases, negative autoregulation stabilizes UBX levels, while in others it modulates the spatial and temporal patterns of UBX expression. This modulation of UBX expression may enable Ubx to specify distinct identities in different segments. The upstream control region of Ubx contains multiple autoregulatory elements for both positive and negative autoregulation.
1994
Irvine, KD, Wieschaus E.  1994.  Cell intercalation during Drosophila germband extension and its regulation by pair-rule segmentation genes. Development (Cambridge, England). 120:827-41. AbstractWebsite
After the onset of gastrulation, the Drosophila germband undergoes a morphological change in which its length along the anterior-posterior axis increases over two-and-a-half fold while its width along the dorsal-ventral axis simultaneously narrows. The behavior of individual cells during germband extension was investigated by epi-illumination and time-lapse video microscopy of living embryos. Cells intercalate between their dorsal and ventral neighbors during extension, increasing the number of cells along the anterior-posterior axis while decreasing the number of cells along the dorsal-ventral axis. Mutations that reduce segmental subdivision of the embryo along the anterior-posterior axis decrease both germband extension and its associated cell intercalation. In contrast, cell intercalation and germband extension are still detected in embryos that lack dorsal-ventral polarity. Characterization of germband extension and cell intercalation in mutant embryos with altered segmentation gene expression indicates that these processes are regionally autonomous and are dependent upon the establishment of striped expression patterns for certain pair-rule genes. Based on these observations, we propose a model for germband extension in which cell intercalation results from the establishment of adhesive differences between stripes of cells by pair-rule genes.
Irvine, KD, Wieschaus E.  1994.  fringe, a Boundary-specific signaling molecule, mediates interactions between dorsal and ventral cells during Drosophila wing development. Cell. 79:595-606. AbstractWebsite
Wing formation in Drosophila requires interactions between dorsal and ventral cells. We describe a new gene, fringe, which is expressed in dorsal cells and encodes for a novel protein that is predicted to be secreted. Wing margin formation and distal wing outgrowth can be induced by the juxtaposition of cells with and without fringe expression, whether at the normal wing margin, at the boundaries of fringe mutant clones in the dorsal wing, or at sites of fringe misexpression in the ventral wing. By contrast, both loss of fringe expression and uniform fringe expression cause wing loss. These observations suggest that fringe encodes a boundary-specific cell-signaling molecule that is responsible for dorsal-ventral cell interactions during wing development.
1995
Kim, J, Irvine KD, Carroll SB.  1995.  Cell recognition, signal induction, and symmetrical gene activation at the dorsal-ventral boundary of the developing Drosophila wing. Cell. 82:795-802. AbstractWebsite
Appendage formation in insects and vertebrates depends upon signals from both the anterior-posterior and dorsal-ventral (DV) axes. In Drosophila, wing formation is organized symmetrically around the DV boundary of the growing wing imaginal disc and requires interactions between dorsal and ventral cells. Compartmentalization of the wing disc, dorsal cell behavior, and the expression of two dorsally expressed putative signaling molecules, fringe (fng) and Serrate (Ser), are regulated by the apterous selector gene. Here, we demonstrate that fng and Ser have distinct roles in a novel cell recognition and signal induction process. fng serves as a boundary-determining molecule such that Ser is induced wherever cells expressing fng and cells not expressing fng are juxtaposed. Ser in turn triggers the expression of genes involved in wing growth and patterning on both sides of the DV boundary.
1997
Irvine, KD, Vogt TF.  1997.  Dorsal-ventral signaling in limb development. Current Opinion in Cell Biology. 9:867-76. AbstractWebsite
In both Drosophila wings and vertebrate limbs, signaling between dorsal and ventral cells establishes an organizer that promotes limb formation. Significant progress has been made recently towards characterizing the signaling interactions that occur at the dorsal-ventral limb border. Studies of chicks have indicated that, as in Drosophila, this signaling process requires the participation of Fringe. Studies of Drosophila have indicated that Fringe functions by inhibiting the ability of Notch to be activated by one ligand, Serrate, while potentiating the ability of Notch to be activated by another ligand, Delta. Recent studies of both Drosophila and vertebrates have also shed new light on the signaling activity of the dorsal-ventral boundary limb organizer, and have highlighted how this organizer is maintained by feedback mechanisms with neighboring cells.
Johnston, SH, Rauskolb C, Wilson R, Prabhakaran B, Irvine KD, Vogt TF.  1997.  A family of mammalian Fringe genes implicated in boundary determination and the Notch pathway. Development. 124:2245-54. AbstractWebsite
The formation of boundaries between groups of cells is a universal feature of metazoan development. Drosophila fringe modulates the activation of the Notch signal transduction pathway at the dorsal-ventral boundary of the wing imaginal disc. Three mammalian fringe-related family members have been cloned and characterized: Manic, Radical and Lunatic Fringe. Expression studies in mouse embryos support a conserved role for mammalian Fringe family members in participation in the Notch signaling pathway leading to boundary determination during segmentation. In mammalian cells, Drosophila fringe and the mouse Fringe proteins are subject to posttranslational regulation at the levels of differential secretion and proteolytic processing. When misexpressed in the developing Drosophila wing imaginal disc the mouse Fringe genes exhibit conserved and differential effects on boundary determination.
Panin, VM, Papayannopoulos V, Wilson R, Irvine KD.  1997.  Fringe modulates Notch-ligand interactions. Nature. 387:908-12. AbstractWebsite
The Notch family of transmembrane receptor proteins mediate developmental cell-fate decisions, and mutations in mammalian Notch genes have been implicated in leukaemia, breast cancer, stroke and dementia. During wing development in Drosophila, the Notch receptor is activated along the border between dorsal and ventral cells, leading to the specification of specialized cells that express Wingless (Wg) and organize wing growth and patterning. Three genes, fringe (fng), Serrate (Ser) and Delta (Dl), are involved in the cellular interactions leading to Notch activation. Ser and Dl encode transmembrane ligands for Notch, whereas fng encodes a pioneer protein. We have investigated the relationship between these genes by a combination of expression and coexpression studies in the Drosophila wing. We found that Ser and Dl maintain each other's expression by a positive feedback loop. fng is expressed specifically by dorsal cells and functions to position and restrict this feedback loop to the developing dorsal-ventral boundary. This is achieved by fng through a cell-autonomous mechanism that inhibits a cell's ability to respond to Serrate protein and potentiates its ability to respond to Delta protein.
1998
Panin, VM, Irvine KD.  1998.  Modulators of Notch signaling. Seminars in Cell & Developmental Biology. 9:609-17. AbstractWebsite
In addition to the core components of the Notch pathway, a number of proteins have been identified that exert positive or negative influences on Notch signaling. These include extracellular modulators, which may influence binding or activation of Notch by its ligands, cytoplasmic modulators, which presumably influence signal transduction steps after receptor activation, and nuclear modulators, which may influence the transcriptional activity of a Notch-CSL protein complex. Many of the cytoplasmic and nuclear modulators appear to bind directly to discrete domains within the intracellular domain of Notch. Genetic studies indicate that distinct modulators are deployed during distinct modes of Notch signaling.
Simmonds, AJ, Liu X, Soanes KH, Krause HM, Irvine KD, Bell JB.  1998.  Molecular interactions between Vestigial and Scalloped promote wing formation in Drosophila. Genes & Development. 12:3815-20. AbstractWebsite
Scalloped (Sd) and Vestigial (Vg) are each needed for Drosophila wing development. We show that Sd is required for Vg function and that altering their relative cellular levels inhibits wing formation. In vitro, Vg binds directly to both Sd and its human homolog, Transcription Enhancer Factor-1. The interaction domains map to a small region of Vg that is essential for Vg-mediated gene activation and to the carboxy-terminal half of Sd. Our observations indicate that Vg and Sd function coordinately to control the expression of genes required for wing development, which implies that Vg is a tissue-specific transcriptional intermediary factor of Sd.
Papayannopoulos, V, Tomlinson A, Panin VM, Rauskolb C, Irvine KD.  1998.  Dorsal-ventral signaling in the Drosophila eye. Science. 281:2031-4. AbstractWebsite
The development of the Drosophila eye has served as a model system for investigations of tissue patterning and cell-cell communication; however, early eye development has not been well understood. The results presented here indicate that specialized cells are established along the dorsal-ventral midline of the developing eye by Notch-mediated signaling between dorsal and ventral cells, and that Notch activation at the midline plays an essential role both in promoting the growth of the eye primordia and in regulating eye patterning. These observations imply that the developmental homology between Drosophila wings and vertebrate limbs extends to Drosophila eyes.
1999
Irvine, KD.  1999.  Fringe, Notch, and making developmental boundaries. Current opinion in genetics & development. 9:434-41. AbstractWebsite
Multiple mechanisms are involved in positioning and restricting specialized dorsal-ventral border cells in the Drosophila wing, including modulation of Notch signaling by Fringe, autonomous inhibition by Notch ligands, and inhibition of Notch target genes by Nubbin. Recent studies have revealed that Fringe also modulates a Notch-mediated signaling process between dorsal and ventral cells in the Drosophila eye, establishing an organizer of eye growth and patterning along the dorsal-ventral midline. Fringe-dependent modulation of Notch signaling also plays a key role in Drosophila leg segmentation and growth. Lunatic Fringe has been shown to be required for vertebrate somitogenesis, where it appears to act as a crucial link between a molecular clock and the regulation of Notch signaling.
Rauskolb, C, Irvine KD.  1999.  Notch-mediated segmentation and growth control of the Drosophila leg. Developmental Biology. 210:339-50. AbstractWebsite
The possession of segmented appendages is a defining characteristic of the arthropods. By analyzing both loss-of-function and ectopic expression experiments, we show that the Notch signaling pathway plays a fundamental role in the segmentation and growth of the Drosophila leg. Local activation of Notch is necessary and sufficient to promote the formation of joints between segments. This segmentation process requires the participation of the Notch ligands, Serrate and Delta, as well as Fringe. These three proteins are each expressed in the developing leg and antennal imaginal discs in a segmentally repeated pattern that is regulated downstream of the action of Wingless and Decapentaplegic. Our studies further show that Notch activation is both necessary and sufficient to promote leg growth. We also identify target genes regulated both positively and negatively downstream of Notch signaling that are required for normal leg development. Together, these observations outline a regulatory hierarchy for the segmentation and growth of the leg. The Notch pathway is also deployed for segmentation during vertebrate somitogenesis, which raises the possibility of a common origin for the segmentation of these distinct tissues.
Rauskolb, C, Correia T, Irvine KD.  1999.  Fringe-dependent separation of dorsal and ventral cells in the Drosophila wing. Nature. 401:476-80. AbstractWebsite
The separation of cells into populations that do not intermix, termed compartments, is a fundamental organizing principle during development. Dorsal-ventral compartmentalization of the Drosophila wing is regulated downstream of the apterous (ap) gene, which encodes a transcription factor that specifies dorsal wing fate. fringe (fng) is normally expressed by dorsal cells downstream of ap; here we show that fng plays a key role in dorsal-ventral compartmentalization. Loss of fng function causes dorsal cells to violate the compartment boundary, and ectopic expression of the Fng protein causes ventral cells to violate thecompartment boundary. Fng modulates signalling through the Notch receptor. Notch and its ligands are essential for formation of the dorsal-ventral compartment border, and repositioning the stripe of Notch activation that is normally established there appears to reposition the compartment border. However, activation of Notch does not itself confer either dorsal or ventral cell location, and fng can influence compartmentalization even within regions of ubiquitous Notch activation. Our results indicate that the primary mechanism by which fng establishes a compartment border is by positioning a stripe of Notch activation, but also that fng may exert additional influences on compartmentalization.
2000
Liu, X, Grammont M, Irvine KD.  2000.  Roles for scalloped and vestigial in regulating cell affinity and interactions between the wing blade and the wing hinge. Developmental biology. 228:287-303. AbstractWebsite
The scalloped and vestigial genes are both required for the formation of the Drosophila wing, and recent studies have indicated that they can function as a heterodimeric complex to regulate the expression of downstream target genes. We have analyzed the consequences of complete loss of scalloped function, ectopic expression of scalloped, and ectopic expression of vestigial on the development of the Drosophila wing imaginal disc. Clones of cells mutant for a strong allele of scalloped fail to proliferate within the wing pouch, but grow normally in the wing hinge and notum. Cells overexpressing scalloped fail to proliferate in both notal and wing-blade regions of the disc, and this overexpression induces apoptotic cell death. Clones of cells overexpressing vestigial grow smaller or larger than control clones, depending upon their distance from the dorsal-ventral compartment boundary. These studies highlight the importance of correct scalloped and vestigial expression levels to normal wing development. Our studies of vestigial-overexpressing clones also reveal two further aspects of wing development. First, in the hinge region vestigial exerts both a local inhibition and a long-range induction of wingless expression. These and other observations imply that vestigial-expressing cells in the wing blade organize the development of surrounding wing-hinge cells. Second, clones of cells overexpressing vestigial exhibit altered cell affinities. Our analysis of these clones, together with studies of scalloped mutant clones, implies that scalloped- and vestigial-dependent cell adhesion contributes to separation of the wing blade from the wing hinge and to a gradient of cell affinities along the dorsal-ventral axis of the wing.
Moloney, DJ, Panin VM, Johnston SH, Chen J, Shao L, Wilson R, Wang Y, Stanley P, Irvine KD, Haltiwanger RS et al..  2000.  Fringe is a glycosyltransferase that modifies Notch. Nature. 406:369-75. AbstractWebsite
Notch receptors function in highly conserved intercellular signalling pathways that direct cell-fate decisions, proliferation and apoptosis in metazoans. Fringe proteins can positively and negatively modulate the ability of Notch ligands to activate the Notch receptor. Here we establish the biochemical mechanism of Fringe action. Drosophila and mammalian Fringe proteins possess a fucose-specific beta1,3 N-acetylglucosaminyltransferase activity that initiates elongation of O-linked fucose residues attached to epidermal growth factor-like sequence repeats of Notch. We obtained biological evidence that Fringe-dependent elongation of O-linked fucose on Notch modulates Notch signalling by using co-culture assays in mammalian cells and by expression of an enzymatically inactive Fringe mutant in Drosophila. The post-translational modification of Notch by Fringe represents a striking example of modulation of a signalling event by differential receptor glycosylation and identifies a mechanism that is likely to be relevant to other signalling pathways.
2001
Irvine, KD, Rauskolb C.  2001.  Boundaries in development: formation and function. Annual Review of Cell and Developmental Biology. 17:189-214. AbstractWebsite
Developing organisms may contain billions of cells destined to differentiate in numerous different ways. One strategy organisms use to simplify the orchestration of development is the separation of cell populations into distinct functional units. Our expanding knowledge of boundary formation and function in different systems is beginning to reveal general principles of this process. Fields of cells are subdivided by the interpretation of morphogen gradients, and these subdivisions are then maintained and refined by local cell-cell interactions. Sharp and stable separation between cell populations requires special mechanisms to keep cells segregated, which in many cases appear to involve the regulation of cell affinity. Once cell populations become distinct, specialized cells are often induced along the borders between them. These boundary cells can then influence the patterning of surrounding cells, which can result in progressively finer subdivisions of a tissue. Much has been learned about the signaling pathways that establish boundaries, but a key challenge for the future remains to elucidate the cellular and molecular mechanisms that actually keep cell populations separated.
Grammont, M, Irvine KD.  2001.  fringe and Notch specify polar cell fate during Drosophila oogenesis. Development (Cambridge, England). 128:2243-53. AbstractWebsite
fringe encodes a glycosyltransferase that modulates the ability of the Notch receptor to be activated by its ligands. We describe studies of fringe function during early stages of Drosophila oogenesis. Animals mutant for hypomorphic alleles of fringe contain follicles with an incorrect number of germline cells, which are separated by abnormally long and disorganized stalks. Analysis of clones of somatic cells mutant for a null allele of fringe localizes the requirement for fringe in follicle formation to the polar cells, and demonstrates that fringe is required for polar cell fate. Clones of cells mutant for Notch also lack polar cells and the requirement for Notch in follicle formation appears to map to the polar cells. Ectopic expression of fringe or of an activated form of Notch can generate an extra polar cell. Our results indicate that fringe plays a key role in positioning Notch activation during early oogenesis, and establish a function for the polar cells in separating germline cysts into individual follicles.
2002
Panin, VM, Shao L, Lei L, Moloney DJ, Irvine KD, Haltiwanger RS.  2002.  Notch ligands are substrates for protein O-fucosyltransferase-1 and Fringe. The Journal of biological chemistry. 277:29945-52. AbstractWebsite
O-Fucose has been identified on epidermal growth factor-like (EGF) repeats of Notch, and elongation of O-fucose has been implicated in the modulation of Notch signaling by Fringe. O-Fucose modifications are also predicted to occur on Notch ligands based on the presence of the C(2)XXGG(S/T)C(3) consensus site (where S/T is the modified amino acid) in a number of the EGF repeats of these proteins. Here we establish that both mammalian and Drosophila Notch ligands are modified with O-fucose glycans, demonstrating that the consensus site was useful for making predictions. The presence of O-fucose on Notch ligands raised the question of whether Fringe, an O-fucose specific beta 1,3-N-acetylglucosaminyltransferase, was capable of modifying O-fucose on the ligands. Indeed, O-fucose on mammalian Delta 1 and Jagged1 can be elongated with Manic Fringe in vivo, and Drosophila Delta and Serrate are substrates for Drosophila Fringe in vitro. These results raise the interesting possibility that alteration of O-fucose glycans on Notch ligands could play a role in the mechanism of Fringe action on Notch signaling. As an initial step to begin addressing the role of the O-fucose glycans on Notch ligands in Notch signaling, a number of mutations in predicted O-fucose glycosylation sites on Drosophila Serrate have been generated. Interestingly, analysis of these mutants has revealed that O-fucose modifications occur on some EGF repeats not predicted by the C(2)XXGGS/TC(3) consensus site. A revised, broad consensus site, C(2)X(3-5)S/TC(3) (where X(3-5) are any 3-5 amino acid residues), is proposed.
Okajima, T, Irvine KD.  2002.  Regulation of notch signaling by o-linked fucose. Cell. 111:893-904. AbstractWebsite
Notch and its ligands are modified by a protein O-fucosyltransferase (OFUT1) that attaches fucose to a Serine or Threonine within EGF domains. By using RNAi to decrease Ofut1 expression in Drosophila, we demonstrate that O-linked fucose is positively required for Notch signaling, including both Fringe-dependent and Fringe-independent processes. The requirement for Ofut1 is cell autonomous, in the signal-receiving cell, and upstream of Notch activation. The transcription of Ofut1 is developmentally regulated, and surprisingly, overexpression of Ofut1 inhibits Notch signaling. Together, these results indicate that OFUT1 is a core component of the Notch pathway, which is required for the activation of Notch by its ligands, and whose regulation may contribute to the pattern of Notch activation during development.
Grammont, M, Irvine KD.  2002.  Organizer activity of the polar cells during Drosophila oogenesis. Development. 129:5131-40. AbstractWebsite
Patterning of the Drosophila egg requires the establishment of several distinct types of somatic follicle cells, as well as interactions between these follicle cells and the oocyte. The polar cells occupy the termini of the follicle and are specified by the activation of Notch. We have investigated their role in follicle patterning by creating clones of cells mutant for the Notch modulator fringe. This genetic ablation of polar cells results in cell fate defects within surrounding follicle cells. At the anterior, the border cells, the immediately adjacent follicle cell fate, are absent, as are the more distant stretched and centripetal follicle cells. Conversely, increasing the number of polar cells by expressing an activated form of the Notch receptor increases the number of border cells. At the posterior, elimination of polar cells results in abnormal oocyte localization. Moreover, when polar cells are mislocalized laterally, the surrounding follicle cells adopt a posterior fate, the oocyte is located adjacent to them, and the anteroposterior axis of the oocyte is re-oriented with respect to the ectopic polar cells. Our observations demonstrate that the polar cells act as an organizer that patterns surrounding follicle cells and establishes the anteroposterior axis of the oocyte. The origin of asymmetry during Drosophila development can thus be traced back to the specification of the polar cells during early oogenesis.
Nakamura, Y, Haines N, Chen J, Okajima T, Furukawa K, Urano T, Stanley P, Irvine KD, Furukawa K.  2002.  Identification of a Drosophila gene encoding xylosylprotein beta4-galactosyltransferase that is essential for the synthesis of glycosaminoglycans and for morphogenesis. The Journal of biological chemistry. 277:46280-8. AbstractWebsite
In mammals, the xylosylprotein beta4-galactosyltransferase termed beta4GalT7 (XgalT-1, EC ) participates in proteoglycan biosynthesis through the transfer of galactose to the xylose that initiates each glycosaminoglycan chain. A Drosophila cDNA homologous to mammalian beta4-galactosyltransferases was identified using a human beta4GalT7 cDNA as a probe in a BLAST analysis of expressed sequence tags. The Drosophila cDNA encodes a type II membrane protein with 322 amino acids and shows 49% identity to human beta4GalT7. Extracts from L cells transfected with the cDNA exhibited marked galactosyltransferase activity specific for a xylopyranoside acceptor. Moreover, transfection with the cloned cDNA restored glycosaminoglycan synthesis in beta4GalT7-deficient Chinese hamster ovary cells. In transfectant lysates the properties of Drosophila and human beta4GalT7 resembled each other, except that Drosophila beta4GalT7 showed a less restricted specificity and was active at a wider range of temperatures. Drosophila beta4GalT7 is expressed throughout development, with higher expression levels in adults. Reduction of Drosophila beta4GalT7 levels using expressed RNA interference (RNAi) in imaginal discs resulted in an abnormal wing and leg morphology similar to that of flies with defective Hedgehog and Decapentaplegic signaling, which are known to depend on intact proteoglycan biosynthesis. Immunohistochemical analysis of tissues confirmed that both heparan sulfate and chondroitin sulfate biosynthesis were impaired. Our results demonstrate that Drosophila beta4GalT7 has the in vitro and in vivo properties predicted for an ortholog of human beta4GalT7 and is essential for normal animal development through its role in proteoglycan biosynthesis.
2003
Lei, L, Xu A, Panin VM, Irvine KD.  2003.  An O-fucose site in the ligand binding domain inhibits Notch activation. Development (Cambridge, England). 130:6411-21. AbstractWebsite
Two glycosyltransferases that transfer sugars to EGF domains, OFUT1 and Fringe, regulate Notch signaling. However, sites of O-fucosylation on Notch that influence Notch activation have not been previously identified. Moreover, the influences of OFUT1 and Fringe on Notch activation can be positive or negative, depending on their levels of expression and on whether Delta or Serrate is signaling to Notch. Here, we describe the consequences of eliminating individual, highly conserved sites of O-fucose attachment to Notch. Our results indicate that glycosylation of an EGF domain proposed to be essential for ligand binding, EGF12, is crucial to the inhibition of Serrate-to-Notch signaling by Fringe. Expression of an EGF12 mutant of Notch (N-EGF12f) allows Notch activation by Serrate even in the presence of Fringe. By contrast, elimination of three other highly conserved sites of O-fucosylation does not have detectable effects. Binding assays with a soluble Notch extracellular domain fusion protein and ligand-expressing cells indicate that the NEGF12f mutation can influence Notch activation by preventing Fringe from blocking Notch-Serrate binding. The N-EGF12f mutant can substitute for endogenous Notch during embryonic neurogenesis, but not at the dorsoventral boundary of the wing. Thus, inhibition of Notch-Serrate binding by O-fucosylation of EGF12 might be needed in certain contexts to allow efficient Notch signaling.
Li, Y, Lei L, Irvine KD, Baker NE, Li L.  2003.  Notch activity in neural cells triggered by a mutant allele with altered glycosylation. Development (Cambridge, England). 130:2829-40. AbstractWebsite
The receptor protein Notch is inactive in neural precursor cells despite neighboring cells expressing ligands. We investigated specification of the R8 neural photoreceptor cells that initiate differentiation of each Drosophila ommatidium. The ligand Delta was required in R8 cells themselves, consistent with a lateral inhibitor function for Delta. By contrast, Delta expressed in cells adjacent to R8 could not activate Notch in R8 cells. The split mutation of Notch was found to activate signaling in R8 precursor cells, blocking differentiation and leading to altered development and neural cell death. split did not affect other, inductive functions of Notch. The Ile578-->Thr578 substitution responsible for the split mutation introduced a new site for O-fucosylation on EGF repeat 14 of the Notch extracellular domain. The O-fucose monosaccharide did not require extension by Fringe to confer the phenotype. Our results suggest functional differences between Notch in neural and non-neural cells. R8 precursor cells are protected from lateral inhibition by Delta. The protection is affected by modifications of a particular EGF repeat in the Notch extracellular domain. These results suggest that the pattern of neurogenesis is determined by blocking Notch signaling, as well as by activating Notch signaling.