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In vitro studies have indicated that reactive oxygen species (ROS) and the oxidation of signaling molecules are important mediators of signal transduction. We have identified two pathways by which the altered redox chemistry of the clk-1 mutants of Caenorhabditis elegans acts in vivo on germline development. One pathway depends on the oxidation of an analog of vertebrate low density lipoprotein (LDL) and acts on the germline through the Ack-related tyrosine kinase (ARK-1) kinase and inositol trisphosphate (IP3) signaling. The other pathway is the oncogenic ras signaling pathway, whose action on germline as well as vulval development appears to be modulated by cytoplasmic ROS.