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Dev Biol May 15, 2003; 257 (2): 302-14.

Activation of Gbetagamma signaling downstream of Wnt-11/Xfz7 regulates Cdc42 activity during Xenopus gastrulation.

Penzo-Mendèz A , Umbhauer M , Djiane A , Boucaut JC , Riou JF .

Wnt-11/Xfz7 signaling plays a major role in the regulation of convergent extension movements affecting the dorsal marginal zone (DMZ) of gastrulating Xenopus embryos. In order to provide data concerning the molecular targets of Wnt-11/Xfz7 signals, we have analyzed the regulation of the Rho GTPase Cdc42 by Wnt-11. In animal cap ectoderm, Cdc42 activity increases as a response to Wnt-11 expression. This increase is inhibited by pertussis toxin, or sequestration of free Gbetagamma subunits by exogenous Galphai2 or Galphat. Activation of Cdc42 is also produced by the expression of bovine Gbeta1 and Ggamma2. This process is abolished by a PKC inhibitor, while phorbol esther treatment of ectodermal explants activates Cdc42 in a PKC-dependent way, implicating PKC downstream of Gbetagamma. In activin-treated animal caps and in the embryo, interference with Gbetagamma signaling rescues morphogenetic movements inhibited by Wnt-11 hyperactivation, thus phenocopying the dominant negative version of Cdc42 (N(17)Cdc42). Conversely, expression of Gbeta1gamma2 blocks animal cap elongation. This effect is reversed by N(17)Cdc42. Together, our results strongly argue for a role of Gbetagamma signaling in the regulation of Cdc42 activity downstream of Wnt-11/Xfz7 in mesodermal cells undergoing convergent extension. This idea is further supported by the observation that expression of Galphat in the DMZ causes severe gastrulation defects.

PubMed ID: 12729560
Article link: Dev Biol

Genes referenced: cdc42 fzd7 gsc not otx2 rho tbxt wnt11b

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