Ser/Thr kinase Trc controls neurite outgrowth in Drosophila by modulating microtubule-microtubule sliding

Rosalind Norkett, Urko Del Castillo, Wen Lu, Vladimir I. Gelfand

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Correct neuronal development requires tailored neurite outgrowth. Neurite outgrowth is driven in part by microtubule-sliding - the transport of microtubules along each other. We have recently demonstrated that a 'mitotic' kinesin-6 (Pavarotti in Drosophila) effectively inhibits microtubule-sliding and neurite outgrowth. However, mechanisms regulating Pavarotti itself in interphase cells and specifically in neurite outgrowth are unknown. Here, we use a combination of live imaging and biochemical methods to show that the inhibition of microtubule-sliding by Pavarotti is controlled by phosphorylation. We identify the Ser/Thr NDR kinase Tricornered (Trc) as a Pavarotti-dependent regulator of microtubule sliding in neurons. Further, we show that Trc-mediated phosphorylation of Pavarotti promotes its interaction with 14-3-3 proteins. Loss of 14-3-3 prevents Pavarotti from associating with microtubules. Thus, we propose a pathway by which microtubule-sliding can be up- or downregulated in neurons to control neurite outgrowth, and establish parallels between microtubule-sliding in mitosis and post-mitotic neurons.

Original languageEnglish (US)
StatePublished - Feb 5 2020


  • D. melanogaster
  • Drosophila
  • Pavarotti
  • Tricornered kinase
  • cell biology
  • kinesin
  • microtubules
  • neurons
  • neuroscience

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


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