The RUNX genes encode conserved transcription factors, which play vital roles in the development of various animals and human diseases. Drosophila runt is a secondary pair-rule gene, which regulates embryo segmentation. Human RUNX1, previously known as AML1, is essential for hematopoiesis. C. elegans rnt-1 is co-orthologous to the human RUNX genes. We found that RNT-1::GFP is expressed in the H0-2, V1-6, and T blast cells in the embryo, and predominantly in the seam cells during larval to adult stages. rnt-1 mutants exhibit a loss of polarity in the asymmetrical T cell division in hermaphrodites and abnormal ray morphology in the male tail. Genetic and molecular analysis revealed that rnt-1 is allelic to mab-2. Mutant analysis suggested that rnt-1/mab-2 is involved in regulating T blast cell polarity in cooperation with the Wnt signaling pathway. Expression studies of GFP::POP-1 and TLP-1::GFP reporters in rnt-1/mab-2 mutants indicated that this gene functions upstream of tlp-1 and downstream, or in parallel to, pop-1 in the genetic cascade that controls asymmetry of the T cell division. All our data suggest that RNT-1/MAB-2 functions with POP-1 to control the asymmetry of the T cell division.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology
- Developmental Biology
- Cell Biology