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Eur J Cell Biol. 2006 Sep;85(9-10):897-904.

Signaling pathways mediating chemotaxis in the social amoeba, Dictyostelium discoideum.

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Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, 725 N. Wolfe Street, Baltimore, MD 21205, USA.


Chemotaxis, or cell migration guided by chemical cues, is critical for a multitude of biological processes in a diverse array of organisms. Dictyostelium discoideum amoebae rely on chemotaxis to find food and to survive starvation conditions, and we have taken advantage of this system to study the molecular regulation of this vital cell behavior. Previous work has identified phosphoinositide signaling as one mechanism which may contribute to directional sensing and actin polymerization during chemotaxis; a mechanism which is conserved in mammalian neutrophils. In this review, we will discuss recent data on genes and pathways governing directional sensing and actin polymerization, with a particular emphasis on contributions from our laboratory.

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