Minimal functional domains of the core polarity regulator Dlg

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The compartmentalized domains of polarized epithelial cells arise from mutually antagonistic actions between the apical Par complex and the basolateral Scrib module. In Drosophila, the Scrib module proteins Scribble (Scrib) and Discs-large (Dlg) are required to limit Lgl phosphorylation at the basolateral cortex, but how Scrib and Dlg could carry out such a ‘protection’ activity is not clear. We tested Protein Phosphatase 1α (PP1) as a potential mediator of this activity, but demonstrate that a significant component of Scrib and Dlg regulation of Lgl is PP1 independent, and found no evidence for a Scrib-Dlg-PP1 protein complex. However, the Dlg SH3 domain plays a role in Lgl protection and, in combination with the N-terminal region of the Dlg HOOK domain, in recruitment of Scrib to the membrane. We identify a ‘minimal Dlg’ comprised of the SH3 and HOOK domains that is both necessary and sufficient for Scrib localization and epithelial polarity function in vivo.

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