Krüppel like factors (KLFs) are conserved transcription factors that have been implicated in many developmental processes including differentiation, organ patterning, or regulation of stem cell pluripotency. We report the generation and analysis of loss-of-function mutants of Drosophila Klf6/7, the luna gene. We demonstrate that luna mutants are associated with very early embryonic defects prior to cellularization at the syncytial stage and cause DNA separation defects during the rapid mitotic cycles resulting in un-coupled DNA and centrosome cycles. These defects manifest themselves, both in animals that are maternally homozygous and heterozygous mutant. Surprisingly, luna is only required during the syncytial stages and not later in development, suggesting that the DNA segregation defect is linked to centrosomes, since centrosomes are dispensable for later cell divisions.
The role of Wnt signaling in embryonic development and stem cell maintenance is well established and aberrations leading to the constitutive up-regulation of this pathway are frequent in several types of human cancers. Upon ligand-mediated activation, Wnt receptors promote the stabilization of ?-catenin, which translocates to the nucleus and binds to the T-cell factor/lymphoid enhancer factor (TCF/LEF) family of transcription factors to regulate the expression of Wnt target genes. When not bound to ?-catenin, the TCF/LEF proteins are believed to act as transcriptional repressors. Using a specific lentiviral reporter, we identified hematopoietic tumor cells displaying constitutive TCF/LEF transcriptional activation in the absence of ?-catenin stabilization. Suppression of TCF/LEF activity in these cells mediated by an inducible dominant-negative TCF4 (DN-TCF4) inhibited both cell growth and the expression of Wnt target genes. Further, expression of TCF1 and LEF1, but not TCF4, stimulated TCF/LEF reporter activity in certain human cell lines independently of ?-catenin. By a complementary approach in vivo, TCF1 mutants, which lacked the ability to bind to ?-catenin, induced Xenopus embryo axis duplication, a hallmark of Wnt activation, and the expression of the Wnt target gene Xnr3. Through generation of different TCF1-TCF4 fusion proteins, we identified three distinct TCF1 domains that participate in the ?-catenin-independent activity of this transcription factor. TCF1 and LEF1 physically interacted and functionally synergized with members of the activating transcription factor 2 (ATF2) family of transcription factors. Moreover, knockdown of ATF2 expression in lymphoma cells phenocopied the inhibitory effects of DN-TCF4 on the expression of target genes associated with the Wnt pathway and on cell growth. Together, our findings indicate that, through interaction with ATF2 factors, TCF1/LEF1 promote the growth of hematopoietic malignancies in the absence of ?-catenin stabilization, thus establishing a new mechanism for TCF1/LEF1 transcriptional activity distinct from that associated with canonical Wnt signaling.
Planar cell polarity (PCP) is cellular polarity within the plane of an epithelial tissue or organ. PCP is established through interactions of the core Frizzled (Fz)/PCP factors and, although their molecular interactions are beginning to be understood, the upstream input providing the directional bias and polarity axis remains unknown. Among core PCP genes, Fz is unique as it regulates PCP both cell-autonomously and non-autonomously, with its extracellular domain acting as a ligand for Van Gogh (Vang). We demonstrate in Drosophila melanogaster wings that Wg (Wingless) and dWnt4 (Drosophila Wnt homologue) provide instructive regulatory input for PCP axis determination, establishing polarity axes along their graded distribution and perpendicular to their expression domain borders. Loss-of-function studies reveal that Wg and dWnt4 act redundantly in PCP determination. They affect PCP by modulating the intercellular interaction between Fz and Vang, which is thought to be a key step in setting up initial polarity, thus providing directionality to the PCP process.
Wnt/?-catenin signalling is central to development and its regulation is essential in preventing cancer. Using phosphorylation of Dishevelled as readout of pathway activation, we identified Drosophila Wnk kinase as a new regulator of canonical Wnt/?-catenin signalling. WNK kinases are known for regulating ion co-transporters associated with hypertension disorders. We demonstrate that wnk loss-of-function phenotypes resemble canonical Wnt pathway mutants, while Wnk overexpression causes gain-of-function canonical Wnt-signalling phenotypes. Importantly, knockdown of human WNK1 and WNK2 also results in decreased Wnt signalling in mammalian cell culture, suggesting that Wnk kinases have a conserved function in ensuring peak levels of canonical Wnt signalling.
Establishment of planar cell polarity (PCP) in a tissue requires coordination of directional signals from cell to cell. It is thought that this is mediated by the core PCP factors, which include cell-adhesion molecules. Here, we demonstrate that furrowed, the Drosophila selectin, is required for PCP generation. Disruption of PCP in furrowed-deficient flies results from a primary defect in Fz levels and cell adhesion. Furrowed localizes at or near apical junctions, largely colocalizing with Frizzled and Flamingo (Fmi). It physically interacts with and stabilizes Frizzled, and it mediates intercellular Frizzled-Van Gogh (Vang)/Strabismus interactions, similarly to Fmi. Furrowed does so through a homophilic cell-adhesion role that is distinct from its known carbohydrate-binding function described during vertebrate blood-cell/endothelial cell interactions. Importantly, the carbohydrate function is dispensable for PCP establishment. In vivo studies suggest that Furrowed functions partially redundantly with Fmi, mediating intercellular Frizzled-Vang interactions between neighboring cells.
Ommatidial rotation is one of the most important events for correct patterning of the Drosophila eye. Although several signaling pathways are involved in this process, few genes have been shown to specifically affect it. One of them is nemo (nmo), which encodes a MAP-like protein kinase that regulates the rate of rotation throughout the entire process, and serves as a link between core planar cell polarity (PCP) factors and the E-cadherin-?-catenin complex. To determine more precisely the role of nmo in ommatidial rotation, live-imaging analyses in nmo mutant and wild-type early pupal eye discs were performed. We demonstrate that ommatidial rotation is not a continuous process, and that rotating and non-rotating interommatidial cells are very dynamic. Our in vivo analyses also show that nmo regulates the speed of rotation and is required in cone cells for correct ommatidial rotation, and that these cells as well as interommatidial cells are less dynamic in nmo mutants. Furthermore, microarray analyses of nmo and wild-type larval eye discs led us to identify new genes and signaling pathways related to nmo function during this process. One of them, miple, encodes the Drosophila ortholog of the midkine/pleiotrophin secreted cytokines that are involved in cell migration processes. miple is highly up-regulated in nmo mutant discs. Indeed, phenotypic analyses reveal that miple overexpression leads to ommatidial rotation defects. Genetic interaction assays suggest that miple is signaling through Ptp99A, the Drosophila ortholog of the vertebrate midkine/pleiotrophin PTP? receptor. Accordingly, we propose that one of the roles of Nmo during ommatial rotation is to repress miple expression, which may in turn affect the dynamics in E-cadherin-?-catenin complexes.
Tropomyosins are widespread actin-binding proteins that influence numerous cellular functions including actin dynamics, cell migration, tumour suppression, and Drosophila oocyte development. Synaptopodin is another actin-binding protein with a more restricted expression pattern in highly dynamic cell compartments such as kidney podocyte foot processes, where it promotes RhoA signalling by blocking the Smurf1-mediated ubiquitination of RhoA. Here, we show that synaptopodin has a shorter half-life but shares functional properties with the highly stable tropomyosin. Transgenic expression of synaptopodin restores oskar mRNA localization in Drosophila oocytes mutant for TmII, thereby rescuing germline differentiation and fertility. Synaptopodin restores stress fibres in tropomyosin-deficient human MDA-MB 231 breast cancer cells and TPM?-depleted fibroblasts. Gene silencing of TPM? but not TPM? causes loss of stress fibres by promoting Smurf1-mediated ubiquitination and proteasomal degradation of RhoA. Functionally, overexpression of synaptopodin or RhoA(K6,7R) significantly reduces MDA-MB 231 cell migration. Our findings elucidate RhoA stabilization by structurally unrelated actin-binding proteins as a conserved mechanism for regulation of stress fibre dynamics and cell motility in a cell type-specific fashion.
Disheveled/Dsh proteins (Dvl in mammals) are core components of both Wnt/Wg-signaling pathways: canonical ?-catenin signaling and Frizzled (Fz)-planar cell polarity (PCP) signaling. Although Dsh is a key cytoplasmic component of both Wnt/Fz-pathways, regulation of its signaling specificity is not well understood. Dsh is phosphorylated, but the functional significance of its phosphorylation remains unclear. We have systematically investigated the phosphorylation of Dsh by combining mass-spectrometry analyses, biochemical studies, and in vivo genetic methods in Drosophila. Our approaches identified multiple phospho-residues of Dsh in vivo. Our data define three novel and unexpected conclusions: (1) strikingly and in contrast to common assumptions, all conserved serines/threonines are non-essential for Dsh function in either pathway; (2) phosphorylation of conserved Tyrosine473 in the DEP domain is critical for PCP-signaling - Dsh(Y473F) behaves like a PCP-specific allele; and (3) defects associated with the PCP specific dsh(1) allele, Dsh(K417M), located within a putative Protein Kinase C consensus site, are likely due to a post-translational modification requirement of Lys417, rather than phosphorylation nearby. In summary, our combined data indicate that while many Ser/Thr and Tyr residues are indeed phosphorylated in vivo, strikingly most of these phosphorylation events are not critical for Dsh function with the exception of DshY473.
Frizzled planar cell polarity (PCP) signaling regulates cell motility in several tissues, including ommatidial rotation in Drosophila melanogaster. The Nemo kinase (Nlk in vertebrates) has also been linked to cell-motility regulation and ommatidial rotation but its mechanistic role(s) during rotation remain obscure. We show that nemo functions throughout the entire rotation movement, increasing the rotation rate. Genetic and molecular studies indicate that Nemo binds both the core PCP factor complex of Strabismus-Prickle, as well as the E-cadherin-?-catenin (E-cadherin-Armadillo in Drosophila) complex. These two complexes colocalize and, like Nemo, also promote rotation. Strabismus (also called Vang) binds and stabilizes Nemo asymmetrically within the ommatidial precluster; Nemo and ?-catenin then act synergistically to promote rotation, which is mediated in vivo by Nemos phosphorylation of ?-catenin. Our data suggest that Nemo serves as a conserved molecular link between core PCP factors and E-cadherin-?-catenin complexes, promoting cell motility.
Wnt-Frizzled/Planar cell polarity (PCP) signaling is a conserved mechanism establishing cellular orientation across animal species. Many aspects of PCP-signaling regulation remain, however, poorly understood. A new paper establishes a potential link from Wnt5a to asymmetric PCP-factor localization via their phosphorylation.
Primary cilia are required for several signaling pathways, but their function in cellular morphogenesis is poorly understood. Here we show that emergence of an hexagonal cellular pattern during development of the corneal endothelium (CE), a monolayer of neural crest-derived cells that maintains corneal transparency, depends on a precise temporal control of assembly of primary cilia that subsequently disassemble in adult corneal endothelial cells (CECs). However, cilia reassembly occurs rapidly in response to an in vivo mechanical injury and precedes basal body polarization and cellular elongation in mature CECs neighboring the wound. In contrast, CE from hypomorphic IFT88 mutants (Tg737(orpk)) or following in vivo lentiviral-mediated IFT88 knockdown display dysfunctional cilia and show disorganized patterning, mislocalization of junctional markers, and accumulation of cytoplasmic acetylated tubulin. Our results indicate an active role of cilia in orchestrating coordinated morphogenesis of CECs during development and repair and define the murine CE as a powerful in vivo system to study ciliary-based cellular dynamics.
Frizzled/planar cell polarity (Fz/PCP) signaling controls the orientation of sensory bristles and cellular hairs (trichomes) along the anteroposterior axis of the Drosophila thorax (notum). A subset of the trichome-producing notum cells differentiate as "tendon cells," serving as attachment sites for the indirect flight muscles (IFMs) to the exoskeleton. Through the analysis of chascon (chas), a gene identified by its ability to disrupt Fz/PCP signaling under overexpression conditions, and jitterbug (jbug)/filamin, we show that maintenance of anteroposterior planar polarization requires the notum epithelia to balance mechanical stress generated by the attachment of the IFMs. chas is expressed in notum tendon cells, and its loss of function disturbs cellular orientation at and near the regions where IFMs attach to the epidermis. This effect is independent of the Fz/PCP and fat/dachsous systems. The chas phenotype arises during normal shortening of the IFMs and is suppressed by genetic ablation of the IFMs. chas acts through jbug/filamin and cooperates with MyosinII to modulate the mechanoresponse of notum tendon cells. These observations support the notion that the ability of epithelia to respond to mechanical stress generated by one or more interactions with other tissues during development and organogenesis influences the maintenance of its shape and PCP features.
Abl is an essential regulator of cell migration and morphogenesis in both vertebrates and invertebrates. It has long been speculated that the adaptor protein Disabled (Dab), which is a key regulator of neuronal migration in the vertebrate brain, might be a component of this signaling pathway, but this idea has been controversial. We now demonstrate that null mutations of Drosophila Dab result in phenotypes that mimic Abl mutant phenotypes, both in axon guidance and epithelial morphogenesis. The Dab mutant interacts genetically with mutations in Abl, and with mutations in the Abl accessory factors trio and enabled (ena). Genetic epistasis tests show that Dab functions upstream of Abl and ena, and, consistent with this, we show that Dab is required for the subcellular localization of these two proteins. We therefore infer that Dab is a bona fide component of the core Abl signaling pathway in Drosophila.
Abelson (Abl) family tyrosine kinases have been implicated in cell morphogenesis, adhesion, motility, and oncogenesis. Using a candidate approach for genes involved in planar cell polarity (PCP) signaling, we identified Drosophila Abl (dAbl) as a modulator of Frizzled(Fz)/PCP signaling. We demonstrate that dAbl positively regulates the Fz/Dishevelled (Dsh) PCP pathway without affecting canonical Wnt/Wg-Fz signaling. Genetic dissection suggests that Abl functions via Fz/Dsh signaling in photoreceptor R3 specification, a well-established Fz-PCP signaling readout. Molecular analysis shows that dAbl binds and phosphorylates Dsh on Tyr473 within the DEP domain. This phosphorylation event on Dsh is functionally critical, as the equivalent DshY473F mutant is nonfunctional in PCP signaling and stable membrane association, although it rescues canonical Wnt signaling. Strikingly, mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs) deficient for Abl1 and Abl2/Arg genes also show reduced Dvl2 phosphorylation as compared with control MEFs, and this correlates with a change in subcellular localization of endogenous Dvl2. As in Drosophila, such Abl-deficient MEFs show no change in canonical Wnt signaling. Taken together, our results argue for a conserved role of Abl family members in the positive regulation of Dsh activity toward Fz-Dsh/PCP signaling by Dsh phosphorylation.
The generation of planar cell polarity (PCP) and tissue shape during morphogenesis is tightly linked, but it is not clear how. Aigouy et al. (2010) now show in the developing Drosophila wing that PCP initially has a radial orientation that becomes realigned to the proximal-distal axis of organ shape by mechanical forces and cell rearrangements mediated by Dachsous.
Epithelia often show, in addition to the ubiquitous apico-basal (A/B) axis, a polarization within the plane of the epithelium, perpendicular to the A/B axis. Such planar cell polarity (PCP) is for example evident in the regular arrangement of the stereocilia in the cochlea of the mammalian inner ear or in (almost) all Drosophila adult external structures. GIPCs (GAIP interacting protein, C terminus) were first identified in mammals and bind to the Galphai GTPase activating protein RGS-GAIP. They have been proposed to act in a G-protein coupled complex controlling vesicular trafficking. Although GIPCs have been found to bind to numerous proteins including Frizzled receptors, which participate in PCP establishment, there is little in vivo evidence for the functional role(s) of GIPCs. We show here that overexpressed Drosophila dGIPC alters PCP generation in the wing. We were however unable to find any binding between dGIPC and the Drosophila receptors Fz1 and Fz2. The effect of overexpressed dGIPC is likely due to an effect on the actin cytoskeleton via myosins, since it is almost entirely suppressed by removing a genomic copy of the Myosin VI/jaguar gene. Surprisingly, although dGIPC can interfere with PCP generation and myosin based processes, the complete loss-of-function of dGIPC gives viable adults with no PCP or other detectable defects arguing for a non-essential role of dGIPC in viability and normal Drosophila development.
Wnt pathways regulate many developmental processes, including cell-fate specification, cell polarity, and cell movements during morphogenesis. The subcellular distribution of pathway mediators in specific cellular compartments might be crucial for the selection of pathway targets and signaling specificity. We find that the ankyrin-repeat protein Diversin, which functions in different Wnt signaling branches, localizes to the centrosome in Xenopus ectoderm and mammalian cells. Upon stimulation with Wnt ligands, the centrosomal distribution of Diversin is transformed into punctate cortical localization. Also, Diversin was recruited by Frizzled receptors to non-homogeneous Dishevelled-containing cortical patches. Importantly, Diversin deletion constructs, which did not localize to the centrosome, failed to efficiently antagonize Wnt signaling. Furthermore, a C-terminal construct that interfered with Diversin localization inhibited Diversin-mediated beta-catenin degradation. These observations suggest that the centrosomal localization of Diversin is crucial for its function in Wnt signaling.
Spatial organization of cells and their appendages is controlled by the planar cell polarity pathway, a signaling cascade initiated by the protocadherin Fat in Drosophila. Vertebrates express 4 Fat molecules, Fat1-4. We found that depletion of Fat1 caused cyst formation in the zebrafish pronephros. Knockdown of the PDZ domain containing the adaptor protein Scribble intensified the cyst-promoting phenotype of Fat1 depletion, suggesting that Fat1 and Scribble act in overlapping signaling cascades during zebrafish pronephros development. Supporting the genetic interaction with Fat1, Scribble recognized the PDZ-binding site of Fat1. Depletion of Yes-associated protein 1 (YAP1), a transcriptional co-activator inhibited by Hippo signaling, ameliorated the cyst formation in Fat1-deficient zebrafish, whereas Scribble inhibited the YAP1-induced cyst formation. Thus, reduced Hippo signaling and subsequent YAP1 disinhibition seem to play a role in the development of pronephric cysts after depletion of Fat1 or Scribble. We hypothesize that Hippo signaling is required for normal pronephros development in zebrafish and that Scribble is a candidate link between Fat and the Hippo signaling cascade in vertebrates.
Planar cell polarity (PCP) regulates the orientation of cells in epithelia and of mesenchymal cells during gastrulation. In this issue, Narimatsu et al. (2009) report that the Smurf E3 ubiquitin ligases are required for localized protein degradation of a core PCP factor to generate cellular asymmetry.
Dishevelled (Dsh) is a cytoplasmic multidomain protein that is required for all known branches of the Wnt signalling pathway. The Frizzled/planar cell polarity (Fz/PCP) signalling branch requires an asymmetric cortical localization of Dsh, but this process remains poorly understood. Using a genome-wide RNA interference (RNAi) screen in Drosophila melanogaster cells, we show that Dsh membrane localization is dependent on the Na(+)/H(+) exchange activity of the plasma membrane exchanger Nhe2. Manipulating Nhe2 expression levels in the eye causes PCP defects, and Nhe2 interacts genetically with Fz. Our data show that the binding and surface recruitment of Dsh by Fz is pH- and charge-dependent. We identify a polybasic stretch within the Dsh DEP domain that binds to negatively charged phospholipids and appears to be mechanistically important. Dsh recruitment by Fz can be abolished by converting these basic amino-acid residues into acidic ones, as in the mutant, DshKR/E. In vivo, the DshKR/E(2x) mutant with two substituted residues fails to associate with the membrane during active PCP signalling but rescues canonical Wnt signalling defects in a dsh-background. These results suggest that direct interaction between Fz and Dsh is stabilized by a pH and charge-dependent interaction of the DEP domain with phospholipids. This stabilization is particularly important for the PCP signalling branch and, thus, promotes specific pathway selection in Wnt signalling.
Most epithelial cells, besides their ubiquitous apical-basal polarity, are polarized within the plane of the epithelium, which is called planar cell polarity (PCP). Using Drosophila as a model, meaningful progress has been made in the identification of key PCP factors and the dissection of their intracellular molecular interactions. The long-range, global aspects of coordinated polarization and the overlying regulatory mechanisms that create the initial polarity direction have, however, remained elusive. Several recent publications have outlined potential mechanisms of how the global regulation of PCP might be controlled and how the distinct core factor groups might interact via frizzled, Van Gogh or flamingo. This review focuses on these exciting features and attempts to provide an integrated picture of these recent and novel insights.
Most tissues display several features of cellular polarization. Besides the ubiquitous epithelial polarization in the Apical-Basal (A/B) axis, many epithelia (and associated organs) display a Planar Cell Polarization (PCP). Recently, a crosstalk between the PCP and A/B polarity determinants has been suggested, i.e. the activity or stability of the PCP factor Frizzled is regulated by the A/B determinants aPKC and Bazooka in the Drosophila eye. We have systematically investigated genetic and physical interactions between the Drosophila A/B factors and the core PCP component Strabismus (Stbm)/Van Gogh (Vang). The A/B determinant Scribble was found to interact both genetically and physically with Stbm/Vang. We demonstrate that Scribble binds Stbm/Vang through its PDZ domain 3 and that it cooperates with Stbm/Vang in PCP establishment. Our data indicate that Scribble, in addition to its role in A/B polarity, has a distinct requirement in PCP establishment in the Drosophila eye and wing. We define a scribble allele that is largely PCP specific. Our data show that Scribble is part of the Stbm/Vang PCP complex and further suggest that it might act as an effector of Stbm/Vang during PCP establishment.
Missense mutations in the PTPN11 gene, which encodes the protein tyrosine phosphatase SHP-2, cause clinically similar but distinctive disorders, LEOPARD (LS) and Noonan (NS) syndromes. The LS is an autosomal dominant disorder with pleomorphic developmental abnormalities including lentigines, cardiac defects, short stature and deafness. Biochemical analyses indicated that LS alleles engender loss-of-function (LOF) effects, while NS mutations result in gain-of-function (GOF). These biochemical findings lead to an enigma that how PTPN11 mutations with opposite effects on function result in disorders that are so similar. To study the developmental effects of the commonest LS PTPN11 alleles (Y279C and T468M), we generated LS transgenic fruitflies using corkscrew (csw), the Drosophila orthologue of PTPN11. Ubiquitous expression of the LS csw mutant alleles resulted in ectopic wing veins and, for the Y279C allele, rough eyes with increased R7 photoreceptor numbers. These were GOF phenotypes mediated by increased RAS/MAPK signaling and requiring the LS mutants residual phosphatase activity. Our findings provide the first evidence that LS mutant alleles have GOF developmental effects despite reduced phosphatase activity, providing a rationale for how PTPN11 mutations with GOF and LOF produce similar but distinctive syndromes.
Establishment of Planar Cell Polarity (PCP) in epithelia, in the plane of an epithelium, is an important feature of the development and homeostasis of most organs. Studies in different model organisms have contributed a wealth of information regarding the mechanisms that govern PCP regulation. Genetic studies in Drosophila have identified two signaling systems, the Fz/PCP and Fat/Dachsous system, which are both required for PCP establishment in many different tissues in a largely non-redundant manner. Recent advances in vertebrate PCP studies have added novel factors of PCP regulation and also new cellular features requiring PCP-signaling input, including the positioning and orientation of the primary cilium of many epithelial cells. This review focuses mostly on several recent advances made in the Drosophila and vertebrate PCP field and integrates these within the existing PCP-signaling framework.
Drosophila Hibris (Hbs), a member of the Nephrin Immunoglobulin Super Family, has been implicated in myogenesis and eye patterning. Here, we uncover a role of Hbs in Notch (N) signaling and ?-secretase processing. Loss of hbs results in classical N-signaling-associated phenotypes in Drosophila, including eye patterning, wing margin, and sensory organ specification defects. In particular, hbs mutant larvae display altered ?-secretase-dependent Notch proteolytic processing. Hbs also interacts molecularly and genetically with Presenilin (Psn) and other components of the ?-secretase complex. This Hbs function appears conserved, as mammalian Nephrin also promotes N signaling in mammalian cells. Our data suggest that Hbs is required for Psn maturation. Consistent with its role in Psn processing, Hbs genetically interacts with the Drosophila ?-amyloid protein precursor-like (Appl) protein, the homolog of mammalian APP, the cleavage of which is associated with Alzheimers disease. Thus, Hbs/Nephrin appear to share a general requirement in Psn/?-secretase regulation and associated processes.
Planar cell polarity (PCP) is a common feature of many epithelia and epithelial organs. Although progress has been made in the dissection of molecular mechanisms regulating PCP, many questions remain. Here we describe a screen to identify novel PCP regulators in Drosophila. We employed mild gain-of-function (GOF) phenotypes of two cytoplasmic Frizzled (Fz)/PCP core components, Diego (Dgo) and Prickle (Pk), and screened these against the DrosDel genome-wide deficiency collection for dominant modifiers. Positive genomic regions were rescreened and narrowed down with smaller overlapping deficiencies from the Exelixis collection and RNAi-mediated knockdown applied to individual genes. This approach isolated new regulators of PCP, which were confirmed with loss-of-function analyses displaying PCP defects in the eye and/or wing. Furthermore, knockdown of a subset was also sensitive to dgo dosage or dominantly modified a dishevelled (dsh) GOF phenotype, supporting a role in Fz/PCP-mediated polarity establishment. Among the new "PCP" genes we identified several kinases, enzymes required for lipid modification, scaffolding proteins, and genes involved in substrate modification and/or degradation. Interestingly, one of them is a member of the Meckel-Gruber syndrome factors, associated with human ciliopathies, suggesting an important role for cell polarity in nonciliated cells.
Cellular morphogenesis, including polarized outgrowth, promotes tissue shape and function. Polarized vesicle trafficking has emerged as a fundamental mechanism by which protein and membrane can be targeted to discrete subcellular domains to promote localized protrusions. Frizzled (Fz)/planar cell polarity (PCP) signaling orchestrates cytoskeletal polarization and drives morphogenetic changes in such contexts as the vertebrate body axis and external Drosophila melanogaster tissues. Although regulation of Fz/PCP signaling via vesicle trafficking has been identified, the interplay between the vesicle trafficking machinery and downstream terminal PCP-directed processes is less established. In this paper, we show that Drosophila CK1-?/gilgamesh (gish) regulates the PCP-associated process of trichome formation through effects on Rab11-mediated vesicle recycling. Although the core Fz/PCP proteins dictate prehair formation broadly, CK1-?/gish restricts nucleation to a single site. Moreover, CK1-?/gish works in parallel with the Fz/PCP effector multiple wing hairs, which restricts prehair formation along the perpendicular axis to Gish. Our findings suggest that polarized Rab11-mediated vesicle trafficking regulated by CK1-? is required for PCP-directed processes.
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