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Cell. 2015 Feb 12;160(4):673-685. doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2015.01.008.

Cortical contractility triggers a stochastic switch to fast amoeboid cell motility.

Author information

1
Institute of Science and Technology Austria, 3400 Klosterneuburg, Austria. Electronic address: ruprecht.verena@gmail.com.
2
Institute of Science and Technology Austria, 3400 Klosterneuburg, Austria; Division of Biomedical Physics, Innsbruck Medical University, 6020 Innsbruck, Austria.
3
Laboratoire Matière et Systèmes Complexes, CNRS/Université Paris-Diderot, UMR 7057, 75204 Paris Cedex 13, France.
4
Institute of Science and Technology Austria, 3400 Klosterneuburg, Austria.
5
Division of Biomedical Physics, Innsbruck Medical University, 6020 Innsbruck, Austria.
6
Laboratoire Jean Perrin and Laboratoire de Physique Théorique de la Matière Condensée, CNRS/Université Pierre et Marie Curie, 75005 Paris, France.
7
Institute of Science and Technology Austria, 3400 Klosterneuburg, Austria. Electronic address: heisenberg@ist.ac.at.

Abstract

3D amoeboid cell migration is central to many developmental and disease-related processes such as cancer metastasis. Here, we identify a unique prototypic amoeboid cell migration mode in early zebrafish embryos, termed stable-bleb migration. Stable-bleb cells display an invariant polarized balloon-like shape with exceptional migration speed and persistence. Progenitor cells can be reversibly transformed into stable-bleb cells irrespective of their primary fate and motile characteristics by increasing myosin II activity through biochemical or mechanical stimuli. Using a combination of theory and experiments, we show that, in stable-bleb cells, cortical contractility fluctuations trigger a stochastic switch into amoeboid motility, and a positive feedback between cortical flows and gradients in contractility maintains stable-bleb cell polarization. We further show that rearward cortical flows drive stable-bleb cell migration in various adhesive and non-adhesive environments, unraveling a highly versatile amoeboid migration phenotype.

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PMID:
25679761
PMCID:
PMC4328143
DOI:
10.1016/j.cell.2015.01.008
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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