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J. Cell Biol. 168 (5): 775-787

Copyright © 2005 by the Rockefeller University Press.


Sunday Driver links axonal transport to damage signaling

Valeria Cavalli1, Pekka Kujala2, Judith Klumperman2, , and Lawrence S.B. Goldstein1

1 Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, CA 92093
2 Department of Cell Biology, Universitair Medisch Centrum Utrecht, 3584CX Utrecht, Netherlands

Correspondence to L.S.B. Goldstein: lgoldstein{at}

Abstract: Neurons transmit long-range biochemical signals between cell bodies and distant axonal sites or termini. To test the hypothesis that signaling molecules are hitchhikers on axonal vesicles, we focused on the c-Jun NH2-terminal kinase (JNK) scaffolding protein Sunday Driver (syd), which has been proposed to link the molecular motor protein kinesin-1 to axonal vesicles. We found that syd and JNK3 are present on vesicular structures in axons, are transported in both the anterograde and retrograde axonal transport pathways, and interact with kinesin-I and the dynactin complex. Nerve injury induces local activation of JNK, primarily within axons, and activated JNK and syd are then transported primarily retrogradely. In axons, syd and activated JNK colocalize with p150Glued, a subunit of the dynactin complex, and with dynein. Finally, we found that injury induces an enhanced interaction between syd and dynactin. Thus, a mobile axonal JNK–syd complex may generate a transport-dependent axonal damage surveillance system.

P. Kujala's present address is the Netherlands Cancer Institute, 1066CX Amsterdam, Netherlands.

Abbreviations used in this paper: APP, amyloid precursor protein; DHC, dynein heavy chain; DIC, dynein intermediate chain; DRG, dorsal root ganglia; JIP, JNK interacting protein; JNK, c-Jun NH2-terminal kinase; KLC, kinesin light chain; PNS, postnuclear supernatant; syd, Sunday Driver.

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