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J Cell Biol. 2011 May 2;193(3):431-3. doi: 10.1083/jcb.201103167.

Generating a Wnt switch: it's all about the right dosage.

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  • 1Institute for Neural Information Processing, Ulm University, D-89081 Ulm, Germany.


Wnt proteins can activate different branches of the Wnt signaling pathway, raising the question of specificity. In this issue, Nalesso et al. (2011. J. Cell Biol. doi:10.1083/jcb.201011051) provide an answer to this conundrum by showing that different concentrations of Wnt ligands can elicit different intracellular responses. These findings not only provide new insights into the molecular mechanisms underlying Wnt signaling, but also indicate how Wnt gradients might contribute to tissue patterning during embryogenesis.

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