Geraldine Seydoux

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Polarization of the C. elegans zygote along the anterior-posterior axis depends on cortically enriched (PAR) and cytoplasmic (MEX-5/6) proteins, which function together to localize determinants (e.g. PIE-1) in response to a polarizing cue associated with the sperm asters. Using time-lapse microscopy and GFP fusions, we have analyzed the localization(More)
Early embryonic germ cells in C. elegans and D. melanogaster fail to express many messenger RNAs expressed in somatic cells. In contrast, we find that ribosomal RNAs are expressed in both cell types. We show that this deficiency in mRNA production correlates with the absence of a specific phosphoepitope on the carboxy-terminal domain of RNA polymerase II.(More)
In Drosophila, the posterior determinant nanos is required for embryonic patterning and for primordial germ cell (PGC) development. We have identified three genes in Caenorhabditis elegans that contain a putative zinc-binding domain similar to the one found in nanos, and show that two of these genes function during PGC development. Like Drosophila nanos, C.(More)
Asymmetric localization of PAR proteins is a hallmark of polarized cells, but the mechanisms that create PAR asymmetry are not well understood. In the C. elegans zygote, PAR asymmetry is initiated by a transient actomyosin contraction, which sweeps the PAR-3/PAR-6/PKC-3 complex toward the anterior pole of the egg. The RING finger protein PAR-2 accumulates(More)
Early embryogenesis in Caenorhabditis elegans is characterized by a series of unequal cleavages that mark the stepwise separation of somatic and germ lineages. We have developed an in situ hybridization protocol to examine the localization of specific maternal and embryonically transcribed messenger RNAs during these early cleavages. We detected three(More)
The distinction between soma and germline was recognized more than a century ago: somatic cells form the body of an organism, whereas germ cells serve to produce future generations. In Caenorhabditis elegans, the separation of some and germline occurs through a series of asymmetrical divisions, in which embryonic germline blastomeres divide unequally to(More)
gamma-Tubulin is a ubiquitous and highly conserved component of centrosomes in eukaryotic cells. Genetic and biochemical studies have demonstrated that gamma-tubulin functions as part of a complex to nucleate microtubule polymerization from centrosomes. We show that, as in other organisms, Caenorhabditis elegans gamma-tubulin is concentrated in centrosomes.(More)
A hallmark of polarized cells is the segregation of the PAR polarity regulators into asymmetric domains at the cell cortex. Antagonistic interactions involving two conserved kinases, atypical protein kinase C (aPKC) and PAR-1, have been implicated in polarity maintenance, but the mechanisms that initiate the formation of asymmetric PAR domains are not(More)
The CCCH finger protein PIE-1 is a regulator of germ cell fate that segregates with the germ lineage in early embryos. At each asymmetric division, PIE-1 is inherited preferentially by the germline daughter and is excluded from the somatic daughter. We show that this asymmetry is regulated at the protein level by two complementary mechanisms. The first acts(More)