Apical-basal polarity in Drosophila neuroblasts is independent of vesicular trafficking.
ABSTRACT The possession of apical-basal polarity is a common feature of epithelia and neural stem cells, so-called neuroblasts (NBs). In Drosophila, an evolutionarily conserved protein complex consisting of atypical protein kinase C and the scaffolding proteins Bazooka/PAR-3 and PAR-6 controls the polarity of both cell types. The components of this complex localize to the apical junctional region of epithelial cells and form an apical crescent in NBs. In epithelia, the PAR proteins interact with the cellular machinery for polarized exocytosis and endocytosis, both of which are essential for the establishment of plasma membrane polarity. In NBs, many cortical proteins show a strongly polarized subcellular localization, but there is little evidence for the existence of distinct apical and basolateral plasma membrane domains, raising the question of whether vesicular trafficking is required for polarization of NBs. We analyzed the polarity of NBs mutant for essential regulators of the main exocytic and endocytic pathways. Surprisingly, we found that none of these mutations affected NB polarity, demonstrating that NB cortical polarity is independent of plasma membrane polarity and that the PAR proteins function in a cell type-specific manner.
Article: Cdc42 and Par proteins stabilize dynamic adherens junctions in the Drosophila neuroectoderm through regulation of apical endocytosis.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Cell rearrangements require dynamic changes in cell-cell contacts to maintain tissue integrity. We investigated the function of Cdc42 in maintaining adherens junctions (AJs) and apical polarity in the Drosophila melanogaster neuroectodermal epithelium. About one third of cells exit the epithelium through ingression and become neuroblasts. Cdc42-compromised embryos lost AJs in the neuroectoderm during neuroblast ingression. In contrast, when neuroblast formation was suppressed, AJs were maintained despite the loss of Cdc42 function. Loss of Cdc42 function caused an increase in the endocytotic uptake of apical proteins, including apical polarity factors such as Crumbs, which are required for AJ stability. In addition, Cdc42 has a second function in regulating endocytotic trafficking, as it is required for the progression of apical cargo from the early to the late endosome. The Par complex acts as an effector for Cdc42 in controlling the endocytosis of apical proteins. This study reveals functional interactions between apical polarity proteins and endocytosis that are critical for stabilizing dynamic basolateral AJs.The Journal of Cell Biology 01/2009; 183(6):1129-43. · 10.26 Impact Factor
Article: Mutations in the exocyst component Sec5 disrupt neuronal membrane traffic, but neurotransmitter release persists.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: The exocyst (Sec6/8) complex is necessary for secretion in yeast and has been postulated to establish polarity by directing vesicle fusion to specific sites along the plasma membrane. The complex may also function in the nervous system, but its precise role is unknown. We have investigated exocyst function in Drosophila with mutations in one member of the complex, sec5. Null alleles die as growth-arrested larvae, whose neuromuscular junctions fail to expand. In culture, neurite outgrowth fails in sec5 mutants once maternal Sec5 is exhausted. Using a trafficking assay, we found impairments in the membrane addition of newly synthesized proteins. In contrast, synaptic vesicle fusion was not impaired. Thus, Sec5 differentiates between two forms of vesicle trafficking: trafficking for cell growth and membrane protein insertion depend on sec5, whereas transmitter secretion does not. In this regard, sec5 differs from the homologs of other yeast exocytosis genes that are required for both neuronal trafficking pathways.Neuron 03/2003; 37(3):433-47. · 14.74 Impact Factor
Article: The polarity-inducing kinase Par-1 controls Xenopus gastrulation in cooperation with 14-3-3 and aPKC.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Par (partitioning-defective) genes were originally identified in Caenorhabditis elegans as determinants of anterior/posterior polarity. However, neither their function in vertebrate development nor their action mechanism has been fully addressed. Here we show that two members of Par proteins, 14-3-3 (Par-5) and atypical PKC (aPKC), regulate the serine/threonine kinase Par-1 to control Xenopus gastrulation. We find first that Xenopus Par-1 (xPar-1) is essential for gastrulation but not for cell fate specification during early embryonic development. We then find that xPar-1 binds to 14-3-3 in an aPKC-dependent manner. Our analyses identify two aPKC phosphorylation sites in xPar-1, which are essential for 14-3-3 binding and for proper gastrulation movements. The aPKC phosphorylation-dependent binding of xPar-1 to 14-3-3 does not markedly affect the kinase activity of xPar-1, but induces relocation of xPar-1 from the plasma membranes to the cytoplasm. Finally, we show that Xenopus aPKC and its binding partner Xenopus Par-6 are also essential for gastrulation. Thus, our results identify a requirement of Par proteins for Xenopus gastrulation and reveal a novel interrelationship within Par proteins that may provide a general mechanism for spatial control of Par-1.The EMBO Journal 11/2004; 23(21):4190-201. · 9.20 Impact Factor