The mec-7 beta-tubulin gene of Caenorhabditis elegans is expressed primarily in the touch receptor neurons

EMBO J. 1992 Aug;11(8):2885-93.


Mutants of the mec-7 beta-tubulin gene of Caenorhabditis elegans lack the large diameter 15-protofilament microtubules normally found only in the set of six touch receptor neurons. Both a mec-7-lacZ reporter gene and affinity-purified anti-mec-7 antibodies were used to show that mec-7 is expressed primarily in the touch neurons. These data are consistent with a possible instructive role for the mec-7 tubulin in determining microtubule protofilament number. The antibodies and the mec-7-lacZ transgene were also used to examine mec-7 expression in mutants affecting the generation, differentiation or maintenance of the touch neurons. Decreased expression was observed in mutants of unc-86 and mec-3, genes that encode transcription factors essential for touch receptor neuron generation and differentiation, respectively.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Animals, Genetically Modified
  • Antibodies
  • Blotting, Western
  • Caenorhabditis / genetics
  • Caenorhabditis / growth & development
  • Caenorhabditis / physiology*
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • Genes
  • Larva
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Neurons / physiology*
  • Peptides / chemical synthesis
  • Peptides / immunology
  • Promoter Regions, Genetic
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins / isolation & purification
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins / metabolism
  • Sensory Receptor Cells / physiology*
  • Touch
  • Tubulin / genetics*
  • Tubulin / isolation & purification
  • Tubulin / metabolism
  • beta-Galactosidase / genetics
  • beta-Galactosidase / isolation & purification
  • beta-Galactosidase / metabolism


  • Antibodies
  • Peptides
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins
  • Tubulin
  • beta-Galactosidase