TBX2/TBX3 Transcriptional Factor Homologue Controls Olfactory Adaptation in Caenorhabditis elegans

Kohji Miyahara, Norio Suzuki, Takeshi Ishihara, Eiko Tsuchiya, Isao Katsura

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Citations (Scopus)


Although transcriptional factors are known to play important roles in synaptic plasticity, their role in olfactory adaptation has not been studied well. Here we report that Ce-TBX-2, the TBX2/TBX3 transcriptional factor homologue of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, is involved in olfactory adaptation. Two missense hypomorphic mutations in this gene confer abnormality in adaptation, but not chemotaxis, to all the odorants sensed by AWC olfactory neurons. The Ce-tbx-2 gene is expressed in AWB, AWC, ASJ, and many pharyngeal neurons, but expression in AWC neurons is sufficient for normal adaptation. Unexpectedly, the protein product is localized mostly in cytoplasm. The AWC neurons in the mutants retain their characteristic morphology and many marker gene expressions, suggesting that the mutants are abnormal in neural functions rather than neuronal differentiation. The results of this study imply that some of the mammalian T-box family proteins, which play central roles in embryonic development, may also control functions like neural plasticity in differentiated neurons.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)392-402
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Neurobiology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Feb 15 2004
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • General Neuroscience


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