Ascidians are the closest living relatives of vertebrates, and their study is important for understanding the evolutionary processes of oocyte maturation and ovulation. In this study, we first examined the ovulation of Ciona intestinalis Type A by monitoring follicle rupture in vitro, identifying a novel mechanism of neuropeptidergic regulation of oocyte maturation and ovulation. Ciona vasopressin family peptide (CiVP) directly upregulated the phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (CiErk1/2) via its receptor. CiVP ultimately activated a maturation-promoting factor, leading to oocyte maturation via germinal vesicle breakdown. CiErk1/2 also induced expression of matrix metalloproteinase (CiMMP2/9/13) in the oocyte, resulting in collagen degradation in the outer follicular cell layer and liberation of fertile oocytes from the ovary. This is the first demonstration of essential pathways regulating oocyte maturation and ovulation in ascidians and will facilitate investigations of the evolutionary process of peptidergic regulation of oocyte maturation and ovulation throughout the phylum Chordata.
All data generated or analyzed in this study are included in the manuscript and supporting files. Accession numbers of RNA-seq data in this study are described in Table 1 and Table 2. All RNA seq-data are provided in Supplementary file 1 and 4.
- Honoo Satake
- Shin Matsubara
- Shin Matsubara
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
- Yukiko M Yamashita, University of Michigan, United States
© 2019, Matsubara et al.
This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.
Branched actin networks are self-assembling molecular motors that move biological membranes and drive many important cellular processes, including phagocytosis, endocytosis, and pseudopod protrusion. When confronted with opposing forces, the growth rate of these networks slows and their density increases, but the stoichiometry of key components does not change. The molecular mechanisms governing this force response are not well understood, so we used single-molecule imaging and AFM cantilever deflection to measure how applied forces affect each step in branched actin network assembly. Although load forces are observed to increase the density of growing filaments, we find that they actually decrease the rate of filament nucleation due to inhibitory interactions between actin filament ends and nucleation promoting factors. The force-induced increase in network density turns out to result from an exponential drop in the rate constant that governs filament capping. The force dependence of filament capping matches that of filament elongation and can be explained by expanding Brownian Ratchet theory to cover both processes. We tested a key prediction of this expanded theory by measuring the force-dependent activity of engineered capping protein variants and found that increasing the size of the capping protein increases its sensitivity to applied forces. In summary, we find that Brownian Ratchets underlie not only the ability of growing actin filaments to generate force but also the ability of branched actin networks to adapt their architecture to changing loads.
The tongue is a unique muscular organ situated in the oral cavity where it is involved in taste sensation, mastication, and articulation. As a barrier organ, which is constantly exposed to environmental pathogens, the tongue is expected to host an immune cell network ensuring local immune defence. However, the composition and the transcriptional landscape of the tongue immune system are currently not completely defined. Here, we characterised the tissue-resident immune compartment of the murine tongue during development, health and disease, combining single-cell RNA-sequencing with in situ immunophenotyping. We identified distinct local immune cell populations and described two specific subsets of tongue-resident macrophages occupying discrete anatomical niches. Cx3cr1+ macrophages were located specifically in the highly innervated lamina propria beneath the tongue epidermis and at times in close proximity to fungiform papillae. Folr2+ macrophages were detected in deeper muscular tissue. In silico analysis indicated that the two macrophage subsets originate from a common proliferative precursor during early postnatal development and responded differently to systemic LPS in vivo. Our description of the under-investigated tongue immune system sets a starting point to facilitate research on tongue immune-physiology and pathology including cancer and taste disorders.