Morphogen signaling proteins disperse across tissues to activate signal transduction in target cells. We investigated dispersion of Hedgehog (Hh), Wnt homolog Wingless (Wg), and Bone morphogenic protein homolog Decapentaplegic (Dpp) in the Drosophila wing imaginal disc. We discovered that delivery of Hh, Wg, and Dpp to their respective targets is regulated. We found that <5% of Hh and <25% of Wg are taken up by disc cells and activate signaling. The amount of morphogen that is taken up and initiates signaling did not change when the level of morphogen expression was varied between 50-200% (Hh) or 50-350% (Wg). Similar properties were observed for Dpp. We analyzed an area of 150 mm x 150 mm that includes Hh-responding cells of the disc as well as overlying tracheal cells and myoblasts that are also activated by disc-produced Hh. We found that the extent of signaling in the disc was unaffected by the presence or absence of the tracheal and myoblast cells, suggesting that the mechanism that disperses Hh specifies its destinations to particular cells, and that target cells do not take up Hh from a common pool.
All data generated or analysed during this study are included in the manuscript and supporting files
- Thomas B Kornberg
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
- Marianne E Bronner, California Institute of Technology, United States
© 2021, Hatori et al.
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