The Merlin gene of Drosophila is homologous to the human Neurofibromatosis 2 (NF2) gene, an important regulator of proliferation and endocytosis of cell receptors. It was earlier shown that the Thr559 residue of the Drosophila Merlin protein was homologous to Ser518 of the human protein (which was already known to undergo phosphorylation); hence, it was assumed that Thr559 of Drosophila also was a substrate of phosphorylation. The mutant Merlin proteins MerT559D (an analog of the phosphorylated form) and MerT559A (a nonphosphorylated form) were constructed and tested, under the conditions of ectopic expression, for the ability to correct the spermatogenesis defects induced by the Mer4 mutation. The mutant form MerT559D was demonstrated to restore the abnormal nebenkern phenotype induced by this mutation, whereas the MerT559A substituted form did not restore this phenotype. Ectopic expression o the wild-type Merlin protein, MerT559A mutant form, and mycMer345–635 truncated protein in a normal genotype resulted in the abnormal nebenkern phenotype, whereas this phenotype was not observed in the case of ectopic expression of the MerT559D analog of the phosphorylated form. Ectopic expression of the mycMer3, mycMerΔBB, and mycMer1–379 truncate variants led to disturbance of meiotic cytokinesis.
Russian Journal of Genetics – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 13, 2010
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