DOI: 10.1101/455253Oct 28, 2018Paper

AMPK regulates germline stem cell quiescence and integrity through an endogenous small RNA pathway.

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Pratik Kadekar, Richard Roy


C. elegans larvae can undergo a global developmental arrest following the execution of a diapause-like state called dauer in response to unfavourable growth conditions. Survival in this stage surpasses the normal lifespan of reproductive animals quite dramatically, and without any apparent negative impact on their reproductive fitness. During this period, the germ cells become quiescent and must retain their reproductive integrity so the animal can reproduce following recovery. This germline stem cell (GSC) arrest requires the activity of AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) and in its absence the germ line undergoes hyperplasia. We show here that AMPK mutant animals exhibit complete sterility after recovery from dauer, suggesting that germ cell integrity is compromised during this stage in the absence of AMPK. These defects correlate with altered abundance and distribution of a number of chromatin modifications that affect gene expression. These aberrant chromatin modifications, along with the supernumerary germ cell divisions and the observed post-dauer sterility, were all corrected by disabling key effectors of the small interfering RNA pathway (dcr-1 and rde-4) and the primary Argonaute protein ergo-1, suggesting that AMPK r...Continue Reading

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