Des cellules aplatissent leurs voisines pour former un organe allongé

Congratulations to this highly interdisciplinary collaboration ! Just appeared in Plos Biology :

Gradient in cytoplasmic pressure in germline cells controls overlying epithelial cell morphogenesis


It is unknown how growth in one tissue impacts morphogenesis in a neighboring tissue. To address this, we used the Drosophila ovarian follicle, in which a cluster of 15 nurse cells and a posteriorly located oocyte are surrounded by a layer of epithelial cells. It is known that as the nurse cells grow, the overlying epithelial cells flatten in a wave that begins in the anterior. Here, we demonstrate that an anterior to posterior gradient of decreasing cytoplasmic pressure is present across the nurse cells and that this gradient acts through TGFβ to control both the triggering and the progression of the wave of epithelial cell flattening. Our data indicate that intrinsic nurse cell growth is important to control proper nurse cell pressure. Finally, we reveal that nurse cell pressure and subsequent TGFβ activity in the stretched cells combine to increase follicle elongation in the anterior, which is crucial for allowing nurse cell growth and pressure control. More generally, our results reveal that during development, inner cytoplasmic pressure in individual cells has an important role in shaping their neighbors.

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