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Appropriate cell number and organ size in a multicellular organism are determined by coordinated cell growth, proliferation, and apoptosis. Disruption of these processes can cause cancer. Recent studies have identified the Large tumor suppressor (Lats)/Warts (Wts) protein kinase as a key component of a pathway that controls the coordination between cell(More)
We solved the crystal structure of a secreted protein, EXLX1, encoded by the yoaJ gene of Bacillus subtilis. Its structure is remarkably similar to that of plant beta-expansins (group 1 grass pollen allergens), consisting of 2 tightly packed domains (D1, D2) with a potential polysaccharide-binding surface spanning the 2 domains. Domain D1 has a double-psi(More)
We made use of EXLX1, an expansin from Bacillus subtilis, to investigate protein features essential for its plant cell wall binding and wall loosening activities. We found that the two expansin domains, D1 and D2, need to be linked for wall extension activity and that D2 mediates EXLX1 binding to whole cell walls and to cellulose via distinct residues on(More)
The discovery of microbial expansins emerged from studies of the mechanism of plant cell growth and the molecular basis of plant cell wall extensibility. Expansins are wall-loosening proteins that are universal in the plant kingdom and are also found in a small set of phylogenetically diverse bacteria, fungi, and other organisms, most of which colonize(More)
The HSP70 protein family consists one of the most conserved and important systems for cellular homeostasis under both stress and physiological conditions. The genes of this family are poorly studied in Mollusca, which is the second largest metazoan phylum. To study these genes in Mollusca, we have isolated and identified five HSP70 genes from Mytilus(More)
Expansins cause plant cell wall loosening and are present primarily in the plant kingdom. Gene sequence analysis suggests that expansins are present in several plant-colonizing or plant-pathogenic bacteria and fungi. However, experimental evidence of microbial expansin activity is largely lacking. Here we provide evidence that expansins from three plant(More)
Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) has been described as a common mechanism of transferring genetic material between prokaryotes, whereas genetic transfers from eukaryotes to prokaryotes have been rarely documented. Here we report a rare case of HGT in which plant expansin genes that code for plant cell-wall loosening proteins were transferred from plants to(More)
The antibody-based immune system (AIS) is one of many means by which organisms protect themselves against pathogens and parasites. The AIS is present in jawed vertebrates (gnathostomes) but absent in all other taxa, including jawless vertebrates (agnathans). We argue that the AIS has been assembled from elements that have primarily evolved to serve other(More)
The immunoglobulins (Igs or antibodies) as an integral part of the tetrapod adaptive immune response system have evolved toward producing highly diversified molecules that recognize a remarkably large number of different antigens. Antibodies and their respective encoding loci have been shaped by different and often contrasting evolutionary forces, some of(More)
In mammals, the cell surface receptors encoded by the leukocyte receptor complex (LRC) regulate the activity of T lymphocytes and B lymphocytes, as well as that of natural killer cells, and thus provide protection against pathogens and parasites. The chicken genome encodes many Ig-like receptors that are homologous to the LRC receptors. The chicken Ig-like(More)