Selective lineage specification by mab-19 during Caenorhabditis elegans male peripheral sense organ development

M. E. Sutherlin, S. W. Emmons

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


The action of the gene mab-19 is required for specification of a subset of Caenorhabditis elegans male peripheral sense organ (ray) lineages. Two mab- 19 alleles, isolated in screens for ray developmental mutations, resulted in males that lacked the three most posterior rays. Cell lineage alterations of male-specific divisions of the most posterior lateral hypodermal (seam) blast cell, T, resulted in the ray loss phenotype in mab-19 mutant animals. Postembryonic seam lineage defects were limited to male-specific T descendent cell divisions. Embryonic lethality resulted when either mab-19 mutation was placed over a chromosomal deficiency encompassing the mab-19 locus. The earliest detectable defect was aberrant hypodermal cell movements during morphogenesis. From these data, it is inferred that both mab-19 alleles described are hypomorphs, and further reduction of mab-19 function results in embryos that are unable to complete morphogenesis. Thus, mab-19 may play a larger role in developmental regulation of hypodermal cell fate, including sensory ray development in males. Body morphology mutations, passage through the dauer stage, and heat or CdCl2 treatment suppressed mab-19 male phenotypes. A model is presented in which all three types of suppression result in a physiological stress response, which in turn leads to correction of the mab-19 defect.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)675-688
Number of pages14
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1994
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics


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