Teneurins: A conserved family of transmembrane proteins involved in intercellular signaling during development

Department of Cell Biology and Human Anatomy, University of California at Davis, Davis, CA 95616, USA.
Developmental Biology (Impact Factor: 3.64). 03/2006; 290(2):237-45. DOI: 10.1016/j.ydbio.2005.11.038
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Teneurins, which were initially described as ten-a and the pair-rule gene ten-m/odz in Drosophila, are a family of highly conserved proteins that have recently been characterized in Caenorhabditis elegans and a number of vertebrates. We have proposed the nomenclature teneurin 1-4 for the four members of this gene family found in vertebrates. Recent evidence shows that teneurins belong to a novel class of signaling molecules that function both at the cell surface as type II transmembrane receptors and, after the release of the intracellular domain, as transcriptional regulators. Nuclear localization of the intracellular domain has been observed in vitro in mammalian cells and confirmed in vivo in C. elegans. RNAi studies and mutational analysis has revealed that Ten-1 in C. elegans is an important regulator of many aspects of morphogenesis, including germ cell development and neuronal pathfinding. In vertebrates, teneurins are concentrated in the developing and adult central nervous system and at sites of pattern formation, including the developing limb. Teneurins also possess a carboxy terminal sequence that may be processed to generate a neuromodulatory peptide. Teneurin function appears to be required for a fundamentally important signaling mechanism conserved between invertebrates and vertebrates having an impact on many processes relying on cell-cell contact throughout development.

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    ABSTRACT: Teneurins are large type II transmembrane proteins that are necessary for the normal development of the central nervous system (CNS). While many studies highlight the significance of teneurins, especially during development, there is only limited information known about the molecular mechanisms of function. Previous studies have shown that the N-terminal intracellular domain (ICD) of teneurins can be cleaved at the membrane and subsequently translocates to the nucleus where it can influence gene transcription. Since teneurin ICDs do not contain any intrinsic DNA binding sequences, interaction partners are required to affect transcription. Here, we identified histidine triad nucleotide binding protein 1 (HINT1) as a human teneurin-1 ICD interaction partner in a yeast 2-hybrid screen. This interaction was confirmed in human cells, where HINT1 is known to inhibit the transcription of target genes by directly binding to transcription factors at the promoter. In a whole transcriptome analysis of BS149 glioblastoma cells overexpressing the teneurin-1 ICD, several microphthalmia-associated transcription factor (MITF) target genes were found to be up-regulated. Directly comparing the transcriptomes of MITF versus TEN1-ICD overexpressing BS149 cells revealed 42 co-regulated genes, including glycoprotein non-metastatic b (GPNMB). Using real-time Q-PCR to detect endogenous GPNMB expression upon overexpression of MITF and HINT1 as well as promoter reporter assays using GPNMB promoter constructs, we could demonstrate that the teneurin-1 ICD binds HINT1, thus switching on MITF-dependent transcription of GPNMB. Copyright © 2015, The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.
    Journal of Biological Chemistry 02/2015; DOI:10.1074/jbc.M114.615922 · 4.60 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A functionally critical feature of the nervous system is the precision of its connectivity. An emerging molecular mediator of this process is the teneurin/ten-m/odz family of transmembrane proteins. A number of recent studies have provided compelling evidence that teneurins have homophilic adhesive properties which, together with their corresponding expression patterns in interconnected groups of neurons, enables them to promote appropriate patterns of connectivity. Particularly important roles have been demonstrated in the visual, olfactory and motor systems. This review attempts to relate new insights into the complex biology of these molecules to their roles in the establishment of functional neural circuits.
    Seminars in Cell and Developmental Biology 08/2014; 35. DOI:10.1016/j.semcdb.2014.08.007 · 5.97 Impact Factor


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