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Wnt-dependent spindle polarization in the earlyC. elegansembryo

Authors
Journal
Seminars in Cell and Developmental Biology
1084-9521
Publisher
Elsevier
Publication Date
Volume
17
Issue
2
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/j.semcdb.2006.04.005
Keywords
  • Wnt Signaling
  • C. Elegans
  • Spindle Polarity
  • Asymmetric Cell Division
  • Dishevelled

Abstract

Abstract Correct orientation of the mitotic spindle is crucial for the proper segregation of localized determinants and the correct spatial organization of cells in early embryos. The cues dividing cells use to orient their mitotic spindles are currently the subject of intensive investigation in a number of model systems. One of the cues that cells use during spindle orientation is provided by components of the Wnt signaling pathway. Because of its stereotypical cleavage divisions, the availability of Wnt pathway mutants and the ability to perform RNAi, and because cell–cell interactions can be studied in vitro, the C. elegans embryo continues to be a useful system for identifying specific cell–cell interactions in which Wnt-dependent signals polarize the mitotic spindle. This review discusses the evidence for involvement of Wnt signaling during spindle orientation in several contexts in the early C. elegans embryo, a process that involves upstream Wnt effectors but does not involve downstream nuclear effectors of Wnt signaling, and places this Wnt spindle orientation pathway in the larger context of other known modulators of spindle orientation in animal embryos.

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