Developmental Cell paper from new start
Dave Bryant, who recently joined the Institute as a Beatson Associate, has a new paper in Developmental Cell that describes some of the work he was doing while in the USA and which will form the basis of his research programme here.
Dave and his co-authors describe how signals coming from the extracellular matrix (ECM) regulate the polarisation of cells within epithelial tissues, allowing them to orient their apical surfaces correctly and thus form a lumen. Competing RhoA and PKC signalling pathways play key roles in this process. Strikingly, perturbation of these ECM-directed pathways switches epithelial cells towards forming front-rear polarised, and multicellular, invasive cell aggregates. These findings may well have important implications in cancer as switching from lumen-containing tissues to invasive cell aggregates is a hallmark of epithelial cancers. Dave's lab will be investigating this further, in particular in prostate cancer.
Link to Dave's lab page
Bryant DM, Roignot J, Datta A, Overeem AW, Kim M, Yu W, Peng X, Eastburn DJ, Ewald AJ, Werb Z, Mostov KE. A molecular switch for the orientation of epithelial cell polarization. Dev Cell, Epub 9 Oct 2014 DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.devcel.2014.08.027