The Ras-MAPK pathway is important for olfaction in Caenorhabditis elegans

Takaaki Hirotsu, Satoshi Saeki, Masayuki Yamamoto, Yulchi Ilno

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

53 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The Ras-MAPK (mitogen-activated protein kinase) signal transduction pathway is well known to control cellular proliferation and differentiation in response to extracellular signals, but its other functions are less understood. In Caenorhabditis elegans this pathway regulates several developmental events, such as vulval induction and progression of meiosis, but its function in the nervous system is unknown. Here we report that the Ras-MAPK pathway is involved in olfaction in this organism. Mutational inactivation and hyperactivation of this pathway impairs efficiency of chemotaxis to a set of odorants. Experiments in which let-60 ras was expressed using a heat-shock promoter and a cell-specific promoter show that a normal activity of LET-60 Ras is required in mature olfactory neurons. Application of the odorant isoamylalcohol to wild-type animals leads to the activation of MAP kinase in olfactory neurons within 10 seconds. This induction is dependent on the function of the nucleotide-gated channel TAX- 2/TAX-4 and the voltage-activated calcium channel subunit UNC-2. These results suggest a dynamic regulatory role for the Ras-MAPK pathway in perception and transmission of sensory signals in olfactory neurons.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)289-293
Number of pages5
JournalNature
Volume404
Issue number6775
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 16 2000

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Caenorhabditis elegans
Neurons
Linear Energy Transfer
Wild Animals
Meiosis
Chemotaxis
Calcium Channels
Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases
Nervous System
Shock
Signal Transduction
Phosphotransferases
Nucleotides
Hot Temperature
Cell Proliferation
Odorants

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General

Cite this

Hirotsu, T., Saeki, S., Yamamoto, M., & Ilno, Y. (2000). The Ras-MAPK pathway is important for olfaction in Caenorhabditis elegans. Nature, 404(6775), 289-293. https://doi.org/10.1038/35005101

The Ras-MAPK pathway is important for olfaction in Caenorhabditis elegans. / Hirotsu, Takaaki; Saeki, Satoshi; Yamamoto, Masayuki; Ilno, Yulchi.

In: Nature, Vol. 404, No. 6775, 16.03.2000, p. 289-293.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Hirotsu, T, Saeki, S, Yamamoto, M & Ilno, Y 2000, 'The Ras-MAPK pathway is important for olfaction in Caenorhabditis elegans', Nature, vol. 404, no. 6775, pp. 289-293. https://doi.org/10.1038/35005101
Hirotsu T, Saeki S, Yamamoto M, Ilno Y. The Ras-MAPK pathway is important for olfaction in Caenorhabditis elegans. Nature. 2000 Mar 16;404(6775):289-293. https://doi.org/10.1038/35005101
Hirotsu, Takaaki ; Saeki, Satoshi ; Yamamoto, Masayuki ; Ilno, Yulchi. / The Ras-MAPK pathway is important for olfaction in Caenorhabditis elegans. In: Nature. 2000 ; Vol. 404, No. 6775. pp. 289-293.
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