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Role of matrix metalloproteinase ZMP-2 in pathogen resistance and development in Caenorhabditis elegans

: Altincicek, B.; Fischer, M.; Fischer, M.; Lüersen, K.; Boll, M.; Wenzel, U.; Vilcinskas, A.


Developmental and comparative immunology : DCI 34 (2010), 11, pp.1160-1169
ISSN: 0145-305x
ISSN: 1879-0089
Journal Article
Fraunhofer IME ()

The genome of Caenorhabditis elegans includes six homologs of matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs). The C. elegans MMP gene zmp-1 has recently been shown to be involved in anchor cell invasion during post-embryonic vulval development. Here, we identified H19M22.3 (zmp-2) as a pleiotropic MMP gene regulating disease resistance, molting, larval development, and fecundity. Zmp-2(RNAi) nematodes showed significant lifespan reduction during infection with pathogenic Photorhabdus luminescence. Moreover, we observed molting defects indicating a direct or regulative role in extracellular matrix degradation during ecdysis, delayed larval to adult development, and reduced offspring production in hermaphrodite adults. GFP-expressing nematodes revealed predominant expression of zmp-2 in multiple cells during embryogenesis; in hypodermal, muscle, and somatic gonad cells during larval development; and in developing and mature spermathecae in the L4 larval stage and adults. These results give evidence for pleiotropic roles of zmp-2 and provide novel insights into evolutionarily conserved and derived MMP functions in C. elegans.