Apr 3, 2012

The active stem cell specific expression of sponge Musashi homolog EflMsiA suggests its involvement in maintaining the stem cell state

Mechanisms of Development
Kazuko OkamotoNoriko Funayama

Abstract

A hallmark of stem cells is the ability to sustainably generate stem cells themselves (self-renew) as well as differentiated cells. Although a full understanding of this ability will require clarifying underlying the primordial molecular and cellular mechanisms, how stem cells maintain their stem state and their population in the evolutionarily oldest extant multicellular organisms, sponges, is poorly understood. Here, we report the identification of the first stem cell-specific gene in demosponges, a homolog of Musashi (an evolutionarily conserved RNA binding protein that regulates the stem cell state in various organisms). EflMsiA, a Musashi paralog, is specifically expressed in stem cells (archeocytes) in the freshwater sponge Ephydatia fluviatilis. EflMsiA protein is localized predominantly in the nucleus, with a small fraction in the cytoplasm, in archeocytes. When archeocytes enter M-phase, EflMsiA protein diffuses into the cytoplasm, probably because of the breakdown of the nuclear membrane. In the present study, the existence of two types of M-phase archeocytes [(M)-archeocytes] was revealed by a precise analysis of the expression levels of EflMsiA mRNA and protein. In Type I (M)-archeocytes, presumably archeocytes unde...Continue Reading

Mentioned in this Paper

Vertebrates
Establishment and Maintenance of Localization
Apis mellifera
Biochemical Pathway
Reproduction, Asexual
Uncinocarpus queenslandicus
Totipotent
Mitotic Prophase
Tissue Membrane
PIWIL1 gene

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