The cold shock domain protein LIN-28 controls developmental timing in C. elegans and is regulated by the lin-4 RNA

Cell. 1997 Mar 7;88(5):637-46. doi: 10.1016/s0092-8674(00)81906-6.


Mutations in the heterochronic gene lin-28 of C. elegans cause precocious development where diverse events specific to the second larval stage are skipped. lin-28 encodes a cytoplasmic protein with a cold shock domain and retroviral-type (CCHC) zinc finger motifs, consistent with a role for LIN-28 in posttranscriptional regulation. The 3'UTR of lin-28 contains a conserved element that is complementary to the 22 nt regulatory RNA product of lin-4 and that resembles seven such elements in the 3'UTR of the heterochronic gene lin-14. Both lin-4 activity and the lin-4-complementary element (LCE) are necessary for stage-specific regulation of lin-28. Deleting the LCE produces a dominant gain-of-function allele that causes a retarded phenotype, indicating that lin-28 activity is a switch that controls choices of stage-specific fates.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Caenorhabditis elegans / genetics*
  • Caenorhabditis elegans Proteins*
  • Chromosome Mapping
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • Cold Temperature
  • Cytoplasm / physiology
  • Embryonic Induction / physiology
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental / physiology
  • Genes, Helminth / physiology*
  • Genotype
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins
  • Helminth Proteins / chemistry
  • Helminth Proteins / genetics*
  • Helminth Proteins / metabolism
  • Luminescent Proteins
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Nuclear Proteins*
  • Phenotype
  • Protein Structure, Tertiary
  • Retroviridae / genetics
  • Sequence Homology, Amino Acid
  • Transformation, Genetic
  • Zinc Fingers / genetics


  • Caenorhabditis elegans Proteins
  • Helminth Proteins
  • LIN-14 protein, C elegans
  • Luminescent Proteins
  • Nuclear Proteins
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins

Associated data

  • GENBANK/U75912
  • GENBANK/U75913
  • GENBANK/U75914
  • GENBANK/U75915