[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Upon starvation, individual Dictyostelium discoideum cells enter a developmental program that leads to collective migration and the formation of a multicellular organism. The process is mediated by extracellular cAMP binding to the G protein-coupled cAMP receptor 1, which initiates a signaling cascade leading to the activation of adenylyl cyclase A (ACA), the synthesis and secretion of additional cAMP, and an autocrine and paracrine activation loop. The release of cAMP allows neighboring cells to polarize and migrate directionally and form characteristic chains of cells called streams. We now report that cAMP relay can be measured biochemically by assessing ACA, ERK2, and TORC2 activities at successive time points in development after stimulating cells with subsaturating concentrations of cAMP. We also find that the activation profiles of ACA, ERK2, and TORC2 change in the course of development, with later developed cells showing a loss of sensitivity to the relayed signal. We examined mutants in PKA activity that have been associated with precocious development and find that this loss in responsiveness occurs earlier in these mutants. Remarkably, we show that this loss in sensitivity correlates with a switch in migration patterns as cells transition from streams to aggregates. We propose that as cells proceed through development, the cAMP-induced desensitization and down-regulation of cAMP receptor 1 impacts the sensitivities of chemotactic signaling cascades leading to changes in migration patterns.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cyclic AMP has a crucial role during the entire developmental program of the social amoebae Dictyostelium, acting both as an intracellular second messenger and, when secreted, as a directional cue that is relayed to neighboring cells during chemotaxis. Although significant knowledge about cAMP production in chemotaxing cells has been derived from studies performed on cell populations, cAMP dynamics at the single cell level have not been investigated. To examine this, we used a FRET-based cAMP sensor that possesses high cAMP sensitivity and great temporal resolution. We show the transient profile of cAMP accumulation in live Dictyostelium cells and establish that chemoattractants control intracellular cAMP dynamics by regulating synthesis via the adenylyl cyclase ACA. aca(-) cells show no significant change in FRET response following chemoattractant addition. Furthermore, cells lacking ACB, the other adenylyl cyclase expressed in chemotaxing cells, behave similarly to wild-type cells. We also establish that the RegA is the major phosphodiesterase that degrades intracellular cAMP in chemotaxis-competent cells. Interestingly, we failed to measure intracellular cAMP compartmentalization in actively chemotaxing cells. We conclude that cytosolic cAMP, which is destined to activate PKA, is regulated by ACA and RegA and does not compartmentalize during chemotaxis.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The ability of cells to sense external chemical cues and respond by directionally migrating towards them is a fundamental process called chemotaxis. This phenomenon is essential for many biological responses in the human body, including the invasion of neutrophils to sites of inflammation. Remarkably, many of the molecular mechanisms involved in controlling neutrophils chemotaxis arose millions of years ago in the simple eukaryotic organism Dictyostelium discoideum. Both neutrophils and Dictyostelium use G protein-coupled signaling cascades to mediate chemotactic responses, which are responsible for transducing external cues into highly organized cytoskeletal rearrangements that ultimately lead to directed migration. By using the genetically and biochemically tractable organism Dictyostelium as a model system, it has been possible to decipher many of the signal transduction events that are involved in chemotaxis.
Thrombosis and Haemostasis 02/2006; 95(1):12-21. DOI:10.1160/TH05-07-0483 · 4.98 Impact Factor