TGF-β signaling in C. elegans

WormBook. 2013 Jul 10;1-34. doi: 10.1895/wormbook.1.22.2.


Transforming Growth Factor-β (TGF-β) superfamily ligands regulate many aspects of cell identity, function, and survival in multicellular animals. Genes encoding five TGF-β family members are present in the genome of C. elegans. Two of the ligands, DBL-1 and DAF-7, signal through a canonical receptor-Smad signaling pathway; while a third ligand, UNC-129, interacts with a noncanonical signaling pathway. No function has yet been associated with the remaining two ligands. Here we summarize these signaling pathways and their biological functions.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Caenorhabditis elegans / metabolism
  • Caenorhabditis elegans Proteins / metabolism
  • Neuropeptides / metabolism
  • Signal Transduction*
  • Transforming Growth Factor beta / metabolism


  • Caenorhabditis elegans Proteins
  • DAF-7 protein, C elegans
  • Dbl-1 protein, C elegans
  • Neuropeptides
  • Transforming Growth Factor beta
  • UNC-129 protein, C elegans