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Science 302 (5653): 2134-2137

Copyright © 2003 by the American Association for the Advancement of Science

A C. elegans CLIC-like Protein Required for Intracellular Tube Formation and Maintenance

Katherine L. Berry,1 Hannes E. Bülow,1 David H. Hall,2 Oliver Hobert1*

Abstract: The Caenorhabditis elegans excretory canal is composed of a single elongated and branched cell that is tunneled by an inner lumen of apical character. Loss of the exc-4 gene causes a cystic enlargement of this intracellular tube. exc-4 encodes a member of the chloride intracellular channel (CLIC) family of proteins. EXC-4 protein localizes to various tubular membranes in distinct cell types, including the lumenal membrane of the excretory tubes. A conserved 55–amino acid domain enables EXC-4 translocation from the cytosol to the lumenal membrane. The tubular architecture of this membrane requires EXC-4 for both its formation and maintenance.

1 Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics, Center for Neurobiology and Behavior, Columbia University, College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York, NY 10032, USA.
2 Department of Neuroscience, Center for C. elegans Anatomy, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY 10461, USA.

* To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: or38{at}columbia.edu


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