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Development 2010 Apr 01;1378:1315-25. doi: 10.1242/dev.043190.
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Nectin-2 and N-cadherin interact through extracellular domains and induce apical accumulation of F-actin in apical constriction of Xenopus neural tube morphogenesis.

Morita H , Nandadasa S , Yamamoto TS , Terasaka-Iioka C , Wylie C , Ueno N .

Neural tube formation is one of the most dynamic morphogenetic processes of vertebrate development. However, the molecules regulating its initiation are mostly unknown. Here, we demonstrated that nectin-2, an immunoglobulin-like cell adhesion molecule, is involved in the neurulation of Xenopus embryos in cooperation with N-cadherin. First, we found that, at the beginning of neurulation, nectin-2 was strongly expressed in the superficial cells of neuroepithelium. The knockdown of nectin-2 impaired neural fold formation by attenuating F-actin accumulation and apical constriction, a cell-shape change that is required for neural tube folding. Conversely, the overexpression of nectin-2 in non-neural ectoderm induced ectopic apical constrictions with accumulated F-actin. However, experiments with domain-deleted nectin-2 revealed that the intracellular afadin-binding motif, which links nectin-2 and F-actin, was not required for the generation of the ectopic apical constriction. Furthermore, we found that nectin-2 physically interacts with N-cadherin through extracellular domains, and they cooperatively enhanced apical constriction by driving the accumulation of F-actin at the apical cell surface. Interestingly, the accumulation of N-cadherin at the apical surface of neuroepithelium was dependent on the presence of nectin-2, but that of nectin-2 was not affected by depletion of N-cadherin. We propose a novel mechanism of neural tube morphogenesis regulated by the two types of cell adhesion molecules.

PubMed ID: 20332149
PMC ID: PMC2847467
Article link: Development
Grant support: [+]

Species referenced: Xenopus laevis
Genes referenced: actl6a cdh1 cdh2 cdh3 ctnnb1 nectin2 rax snai1 sox2
Antibodies: Cdh2 Ab1
Morpholinos: cdh2 MO1 nectin2 MO1

Article Images: [+] show captions
References [+] :
Barrett, The Rho GTPase and a putative RhoGEF mediate a signaling pathway for the cell shape changes in Drosophila gastrulation. 1997, Pubmed