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Orthogonal muscle fibres have different instructive roles in planarian regeneration.

Authors
  • Scimone, M Lucila1, 2, 3
  • Cote, Lauren E1, 2, 3
  • Reddien, Peter W1, 2, 3
  • 1 Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139, USA.
  • 2 Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research, 9 Cambridge Center, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02142, USA.
  • 3 Department of Biology, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139, USA.
Type
Published Article
Journal
Nature
Publisher
Springer Nature
Publication Date
Nov 30, 2017
Volume
551
Issue
7682
Pages
623–628
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1038/nature24660
PMID: 29168507
Source
Medline
Language
English
License
Unknown

Abstract

The ability to regenerate missing body parts exists throughout the animal kingdom. Positional information is crucial for regeneration, but how it is harboured and used by differentiated tissues is poorly understood. In planarians, positional information has been identified from study of phenotypes caused by RNA interference in which the wrong tissues are regenerated. For example, inhibition of the Wnt signalling pathway leads to regeneration of heads in place of tails. Characterization of these phenotypes has led to the identification of position control genes (PCGs)-genes that are expressed in a constitutive and regional manner and are associated with patterning. Most PCGs are expressed within planarian muscle; however, how muscle is specified and how different muscle subsets affect regeneration is unknown. Here we show that different muscle fibres have distinct regulatory roles during regeneration in the planarian Schmidtea mediterranea. myoD is required for formation of a specific muscle cell subset: the longitudinal fibres, oriented along the anterior-posterior axis. Loss of longitudinal fibres led to complete regeneration failure because of defects in regeneration initiation. A different transcription factor-encoding gene, nkx1-1, is required for the formation of circular fibres, oriented along the medial-lateral axis. Loss of circular fibres led to a bifurcated anterior-posterior axis with fused heads forming in single anterior blastemas. Whereas muscle is often viewed as a strictly contractile tissue, these findings reveal that different muscle types have distinct and specific regulatory roles in wound signalling and patterning to enable regeneration.

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