Cilia appear to be derived, evolutionarily, from structures present in the ancestral (pre-ciliary) eukaryote, such as microtubule-based vesicle trafficking and chromosome segregation systems. Experimental observations suggest that the ciliary gate, the molecular complex that mediates the selective molecular movement between cytoplasmic and ciliary compartments, shares features with nuclear pores. Our hypothesis is that this shared transport machinery is at least partially responsible for the observation that a number of ciliary and ciliogenesis-associated proteins are found within nuclei where they play roles in the regulation of gene expression, DNA repair, and nuclear import and export. Recognizing the potential for such nuclear roles is critical when considering the phenotypic effects that arise from the mutational modification of ciliary proteins.
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McClure-Begley, Tristan D and Klymkowsky, Michael W, "Nuclear roles for cilia-associated proteins." (2017). Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology Faculty Contributions. 45.