Light-mediated activation reveals a key role for Rac in collective guidance of cell movement in vivo.

TitleLight-mediated activation reveals a key role for Rac in collective guidance of cell movement in vivo.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2010
AuthorsWang X, He L, Wu YI, Hahn KM, Montell DJ
JournalNat Cell Biol
Volume12
Issue6
Pagination591-7
Date Published2010 Jun
ISSN1476-4679
KeywordsAnimals, Cell Movement, Cell Surface Extensions, Cells, Cultured, Cricetinae, Drosophila, Epithelial Cells, Female, Humans, Proteins
Abstract

<p>The small GTPase Rac induces actin polymerization, membrane ruffling and focal contact formation in cultured single cells but can either repress or stimulate motility in epithelial cells depending on the conditions. The role of Rac in collective epithelial cell movements in vivo, which are important for both morphogenesis and metastasis, is therefore difficult to predict. Recently, photoactivatable analogues of Rac (PA-Rac) have been developed, allowing rapid and reversible activation or inactivation of Rac using light. In cultured single cells, light-activated Rac leads to focal membrane ruffling, protrusion and migration. Here we show that focal activation of Rac is also sufficient to polarize an entire group of cells in vivo, specifically the border cells of the Drosophila ovary. Moreover, activation or inactivation of Rac in one cell of the cluster caused a dramatic response in the other cells, suggesting that the cells sense direction as a group according to relative levels of Rac activity. Communication between cells of the cluster required Jun amino-terminal kinase (JNK) but not guidance receptor signalling. These studies further show that photoactivatable proteins are effective tools in vivo.</p>

DOI10.1038/ncb2061
Alternate JournalNat. Cell Biol.
PubMed ID20473296
PubMed Central IDPMC2929827
Grant ListR01 GM057464 / GM / NIGMS NIH HHS / United States
U54 GM064346-099026 / GM / NIGMS NIH HHS / United States
S10 RR024550 / RR / NCRR NIH HHS / United States
U54 GM064346 / GM / NIGMS NIH HHS / United States
R01 GM046425 / GM / NIGMS NIH HHS / United States
GM 057464 / GM / NIGMS NIH HHS / United States
GM046425 / GM / NIGMS NIH HHS / United States
R01 GM057464-10 / GM / NIGMS NIH HHS / United States