EGG-3 Regulates Cell-Surface and Cortex Rearrangements during Egg Activation in Caenorhabditis elegans

Rika Maruyama, Nathalie V. Velarde, Richard Klancer, Scott Gordon, Pavan Kadandale, Jean M. Parry, Julie S. Hang, Jacob Rubin, Allison Stewart-Michaelis, Peter Schweinsberg, Barth D. Grant, Fabio Piano, Asako Sugimoto, Andrew Singson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Fertilization triggers egg activation and converts the egg into a developing embryo. The events of this egg-to-embryo transition typically include the resumption of meiosis, the reorganization of the cortical actin cytoskeleton, and the remodeling of the oocyte surface [1-3]. The factors that regulate sperm-dependent egg-activation events are not well understood. Caenorhabditis elegans EGG-3, a member of the protein tyrosine phosphatase-like (PTPL) family [4], is essential for regulating cell-surface and cortex rearrangements during egg activation in response to sperm entry. Although fertilization occurred normally in egg-3 mutants, the polarized dispersal of F-actin is altered, a chitin eggshell is not formed, and no polar bodies are produced. EGG-3 is associated with the oocyte plasma membrane in a pattern that is similar to CHS-1 and MBK-2. CHS-1 is required for eggshell deposition [5-7], whereas MBK-2 is required for the degradation of maternal proteins during the egg-to-embryo transition [8-12]. The localization of CHS-1 and EGG-3 are interdependent and both genes were required for the proper localization of MBK-2 in oocytes. Therefore, EGG-3 plays a central role in egg activation by influencing polarized F-actin dynamics and the localization or activity of molecules that are directly involved in executing the egg-to-embryo transition.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1555-1560
Number of pages6
JournalCurrent Biology
Issue number18
StatePublished - Sep 18 2007



ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Neuroscience
  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences


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