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Caenorhabditis elegans pgp-5 is involved in resistance to bacterial infection and heavy metal and its regulation requires TIR-1 and a p38 map kinase cascade.

Kurz C.L., Shapira M., Chen K., Baillie D.L., Tan M.W.

Animals and plants respond to bacterial infections and environmental stresses by inducing overlapping repertoires of defense genes. How the signals associated with infection and abiotic stresses are differentially integrated within a whole organism remains to be fully addressed. We show that the transcription of a Caenorhabditis elegans ABC transporter, pgp-5 is induced by both bacterial infection and heavy metal stress, but the magnitude and tissue distribution of its expression differs, depending on the type of stressor. PGP-5 contributes to resistance to bacterial infection and heavy metals. Using pgp-5 transcription as a read-out, we show that signals from both biotic and abiotic stresses are integrated by TIR-1, a TIR domain adaptor protein orthologous to human SARM, and a p38 MAP kinase signaling cassette. We further demonstrate that not all the TIR-1 isoforms are necessary for nematode resistance to infection, suggesting a molecular basis for the differential response to abiotic and biotic stress.

Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun. 363:438-443(2007) [PubMed] [Europe PMC]

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