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PAR for the course

  • Jonathan B Weitzman
Genome Biology20034:spotlight-20030127-01

Published: 27 January 2003


Protein KinaseTumor SuppressorHuman TumorCell PolarityGerm Line

In the January 23 Nature Sophie Martin and Daniel St Johnston from the University of Cambridge, UK, show that the Drosophila LKB1 protein, a homolog of the PAR kinases identified for their role in C. elegans embryonic polarity, is required for early anterior-posterior polarity in the fly oocyte (Nature 2003, 421:379-384). They performed a genetic screen for mutants that disrupt the localization of the posterior-polarized protein Stauffen. Genome mapping led them to the lkb1 gene, which encodes a serine/threonine kinase homologous to the human tumor suppressor LKB1 and the C. elegans PAR-4 kinase that is involved in embryonic polarity. LKB1 is phosphorylated by the related PAR-1 kinase and by protein kinase A. DrosophilaLKB1 is essential for cell polarity in the germ line and the follicle cells


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© BioMed Central Ltd 2003