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Published September 10, 2010 | Supplemental Material
Journal Article Open

Planar Cell Polarity Acts Through Septins to Control Collective Cell Movement and Ciliogenesis


The planar cell polarity (PCP) signaling pathway governs collective cell movements during vertebrate embryogenesis, and certain PCP proteins are also implicated in the assembly of cilia. The septins are cytoskeletal proteins controlling behaviors such as cell division and migration. Here, we identified control of septin localization by the PCP protein Fritz as a crucial control point for both collective cell movement and ciliogenesis in Xenopus embryos. We also linked mutations in human Fritz to Bardet-Biedl and Meckel-Gruber syndromes, a notable link given that other genes mutated in these syndromes also influence collective cell movement and ciliogenesis. These findings shed light on the mechanisms by which fundamental cellular machinery, such as the cytoskeleton, is regulated during embryonic development and human disease.

Additional Information

© 2010 American Association for the Advancement of Science. Received for publication 20 April 2010. Accepted for publication 19 July 2010. We thank P. Abitua for technical assistance; E. Spiliotis for the antibodies; and A. Ewald, B. Mitchell, E. Brooks, and K. Smith for critical discussions and reading. This work was supported by grants from the Uehara Memorial Foundation (A.S.); National Institute of General Medical Science (NIH), March of Dimes, Burroughs Wellcome Fund, the Sandler Program for Asthma Research, and the Texas Advanced Research Program (J.B.W.); National Institute of Child Health and Human Development and National Institute of Digestive Diseases and Kidney Disease (NIH) (N.K.). N.K. is the George W. Brumley Professor. J.B.W. is an Early Career Scientist of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

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