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Genesis. 2005 Jul;42(3):150-61.

Control of planar cell polarity by interaction of DWnt4 and four-jointed.

Author information

1
Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX 77030, USA.

Abstract

The Drosophila eye and the wing display specific planar cell polarity. Although Frizzled (Fz) signaling has been implicated in the establishment of ommatidial and wing hair polarity, evidence for the Wnt gene function has been limited. Here we examined the function of a Drosophila homolog of Wnt4 (DWnt4) in the control of planar polarity. We show that DWnt4 mRNA and protein are preferentially expressed in the ventral region of eye disc. DWnt4 mutant eyes show polarity reversals mostly in the ventral domain, consistent with the ventral expression of DWnt4. Ectopic expression of DWnt4 in the dorsoventral (DV) polar margins is insufficient to induce ommatidial polarity but becomes inductive when coexpressed with Four-jointed (Fj). Similarly, DWnt4 and Fj result in synergistic induction of hair polarity toward the source of expression in the wing. Consistent with genetic interaction, we provide evidence for direct interaction of DWnt4 and Fj transmembrane protein. The extracellular domain of Fj is required for direct binding to DWnt4 and for the induction of hair polarity. In contrast to the synergy between DWnt4 and Fj, DWnt4 antagonizes the polarizing effect of Fz. Our results suggest that DWnt4 is involved in ommatidial polarity signaling in the ventral region of the eye and its function is mediated by interacting with Fj.

PMID:
15986451
DOI:
10.1002/gene.20142
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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