Myristoylated CIL-7 regulates ciliary extracellular vesicle biogenesis

Julie E. Maguire, Malan Silva, Ken C.Q. Nguyen, Elizabeth Hellen, Andrew D. Kern, David H. Hall, Maureen M. Barr

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


The cilium both releases and binds to extracellular vesicles (EVs). EVs may be used by cells as a form of intercellular communication and mediate a broad range of physiological and pathological processes. The mammalian polycystins (PCs) localize to cilia, as well as to urinary EVs released from renal epithelial cells. PC ciliary trafficking defects may be an underlying cause of autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease (PKD), and ciliary-EV interactions have been proposed to play a central role in the biology of PKD. In Caenorhabditis elegans and mammals, PC1 and PC2 act in the same genetic pathway, act in a sensory capacity, localize to cilia, and are contained in secreted EVs, suggesting ancient conservation. However, the relationship between cilia and EVs and the mechanisms generating PC-containing EVs remain an enigma. In a forward genetic screen for regulators of C. elegans PKD-2 ciliary localization, we identified CIL-7, a myristoylated protein that regulates EV biogenesis. Loss of CIL-7 results in Male mating behavioral defects, excessive accumulation of EVs in the lumen of the cephalic sensory organ, and failure to release PKD-2::GFP-containing EVs to the environment. Fatty acylation, such as myristoylation and palmitoylation, targets proteins to cilia and flagella. The CIL-7 myristoylation motif is essential for CIL-7 function and for targeting CIL-7 to EVs. C. elegans is a powerful model with which to study ciliary EV biogenesis in vivo and identify cis-targeting motifs such as myristoylation that are necessary for EV-cargo association and function.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2823-2832
Number of pages10
JournalMolecular biology of the cell
Issue number15
StatePublished - Aug 1 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'Myristoylated CIL-7 regulates ciliary extracellular vesicle biogenesis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this