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Development September 1, 1996; 122 (9): 2873-83.

Integrin-dependent adhesive activity is spatially controlled by inductive signals at gastrulation.

Ramos JW , Whittaker CA , DeSimone DW .

Integrins mediate cell-ECM interactions essential for morphogenesis, however, the extent to which integrin adhesive activities are regulated in the embryo has not been addressed. We report that integrin-dependent cell adhesion to the Arg-Gly-Asp (RGD) containing central cell-binding domain of fibronectin is required for gastrulation in Xenopus. Although all cells of the early embryo retain the ability to attach to this region, only involuting cells arising from the dorsal and ventral lips of the blastopore are able to spread and migrate on fibronectin in vitro. This change in adhesive behavior is mimicked by treating animal cap cells with activin-A. Activin-induced changes in adhesion are independent of new transcription, translation, or changes in receptor expression at the cell surface. We demonstrate that ectopic expression of integrin alpha4beta1 in animal cap cells results in attachment to the non RGD-containing V-region of fibronectin. Further, these cells acquire the ability to spread on the V-region following activin induction. Thus, alpha4beta1 adhesion to the V-region, like endogenous integrin binding to the central cell-binding domain, is responsive to activin signalling. These data indicate that cell adhesion to the central cell-binding domain is regulated in both space and time, and is under the control of inductive signals that initiate gastrulation movements. We suggest that position-specific inductive interactions are likely to represent a novel and general mechanism by which integrin adhesion is modulated throughout development.

PubMed ID: 8787760
Article link: Development
Grant support: [+]
Genes referenced: fn1
Antibodies: Fn1 Ab1 Somite Ab1

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