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7 Janelia Publications

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    Pavlopoulos Lab
    08/22/19 | Regionalized tissue fluidization by an actomyosin cable is required for epithelial gap closure during insect gastrulation.
    Jain A, Ulman V, Mukherjee A, Prakash M, Pimpale L, Munster S, Panfilio KA, Jug F, Grill SW, Tomancak P, Pavlopoulos A
    bioRxiv. 2019 Aug 22:. doi: https://doi.org/10.1101/744193

    Many animal embryos face early on in development the problem of having to pull and close an epithelial sheet around the spherical yolk-sac. During this gastrulation process, known as epiboly, the spherical geometry of the egg dictates that the epithelial sheet first expands and subsequently compacts to close around the sphere. While it is well recognized that contractile actomyosin cables can drive epiboly movements, it is unclear how pulling on the leading edge can lead to simultaneous tissue expansion and compaction. Moreover, the epithelial sheet spreading over the sphere is mechanically stressed and this stress needs to be dissipated for seamless closure. While oriented cell division is known to dissipate tissue stresses during epiboly, it is unclear how this can be achieved without cell division. Here we show that during extraembryonic tissue (serosa) epiboly in the red flour beetle Tribolium castaneum, the non-proliferative serosa becomes regionalized into two distinct territories: a dorsal region under higher tension away from the leading edge with larger, isodiametric and non-rearranging cells, and a more fluid ventral region under lower tension surrounding the leading edge with smaller, anisotropic cells undergoing cell intercalation. Our results suggest that fluidization of the leading edge is effected by a heterogeneous actomyosin cable that drives sequential eviction and intercalation of individual cells away from the serosa margin. Since this developmental solution utilized during epiboly resembles the mechanism of wound healing in other systems, we propose actomyosin cable-driven local tissue fluidization as a conserved morphogenetic module for closure of epithelial gaps.

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    Pavlopoulos Lab
    03/27/19 | Attachment of the blastoderm to the vitelline envelope affects gastrulation of insects.
    Muenster S, Jain A, Mietke A, Pavlopoulos A, Grill SW, Tomancak P
    Nature. 2019 Mar 27:. doi: 10.1038/s41586-019-1044-3

    During gastrulation, physical forces reshape the simple embryonic tissue to form the complex body plans of multicellular organisms. These forces often cause large-scale asymmetric movements of the embryonic tissue. In many embryos, the gastrulating tissue is surrounded by a rigid protective shell. Although it is well-recognized that gastrulation movements depend on forces that are generated by tissue-intrinsic contractility, it is not known whether interactions between the tissue and the protective shell provide additional forces that affect gastrulation. Here we show that a particular part of the blastoderm tissue of the red flour beetle (Tribolium castaneum) tightly adheres in a temporally coordinated manner to the vitelline envelope that surrounds the embryo. This attachment generates an additional force that counteracts tissue-intrinsic contractile forces to create asymmetric tissue movements. This localized attachment depends on an αPS2 integrin (inflated), and the knockdown of this integrin leads to a gastrulation phenotype that is consistent with complete loss of attachment. Furthermore, analysis of another integrin (the αPS3 integrin, scab) in the fruit fly (Drosophila melanogaster) suggests that gastrulation in this organism also relies on adhesion between the blastoderm and the vitelline envelope. Our findings reveal a conserved mechanism through which the spatiotemporal pattern of tissue adhesion to the vitelline envelope provides controllable, counteracting forces that shape gastrulation movements in insects.

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    Pavlopoulos Lab
    10/02/18 | Integrin-mediated attachment of the blastoderm to the vitelline envelope impacts gastrulation of insects.
    Muenster S, Jain A, Mietke A, Pavlopoulos A, Grill SW, Tomancak P
    bioRxiv. 2018 Oct 2:. doi: 10.1101/421701

    During gastrulation, physical forces reshape the simple embryonic tissue to form a complex body plan of multicellular organisms. These forces often cause large-scale asymmetric movements of the embryonic tissue. In many embryos, the tissue undergoing gastrulation movements is surrounded by a rigid protective shell. While it is well recognized that gastrulation movements depend on forces generated by tissue-intrinsic contractility, it is not known if interactions between the tissue and the protective shell provide additional forces that impact gastrulation. Here we show that a particular part of the blastoderm tissue of the red flour beetle Tribolium castaneum tightly adheres in a temporally coordinated manner to the vitelline envelope surrounding the embryo. This attachment generates an additional force that counteracts the tissue-intrinsic contractile forces to create asymmetric tissue movements. Furthermore, this localized attachment is mediated by a specific integrin, and its knock-down leads to a gastrulation phenotype consistent with complete loss of attachment. Moreover, analysis of another integrin in the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster suggests that gastrulation in this organism also relies on adhesion between the blastoderm and the vitelline. Together, our findings reveal a conserved mechanism whereby the spatiotemporal pattern of tissue adhesion to the vitelline envelope provides controllable counter-forces that shape gastrulation movements in insects.

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    Keller LabPavlopoulos Lab
    03/29/18 | Multi-view light-sheet imaging and tracking with the MaMuT software reveals the cell lineage of a direct developing arthropod limb.
    Wolff C, Tinevez J, Pietzsch T, Stamataki E, Harich B, Guignard L, Preibisch S, Shorte S, Keller PJ, Tomancak P, Pavlopoulos A
    eLife. 2018 Mar 29;7:e34410. doi: 10.7554/eLife.34410

    During development, coordinated cell behaviors orchestrate tissue and organ morphogenesis. Detailed descriptions of cell lineages and behaviors provide a powerful framework to elucidate the mechanisms of morphogenesis. To study the cellular basis of limb development, we imaged transgenic fluorescently-labeled embryos from the crustacean Parhyale hawaiensis with multi-view light-sheet microscopy at high spatiotemporal resolution over several days of embryogenesis. The cell lineage of outgrowing thoracic limbs was reconstructed at single-cell resolution with new software called Massive Multi-view Tracker (MaMuT). In silico clonal analyses suggested that the early limb primordium becomes subdivided into anterior-posterior and dorsal-ventral compartments whose boundaries intersect at the distal tip of the growing limb. Limb-bud formation is associated with spatial modulation of cell proliferation, while limb elongation is also driven by preferential orientation of cell divisions along the proximal-distal growth axis. Cellular reconstructions were predictive of the expression patterns of limb development genes including the BMP morphogen Decapentaplegic.

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    11/16/16 | The genome of the crustacean Parhyale hawaiensis: a model for animal development, regeneration, immunity and lignocellulose digestion.
    Kao D, Lai AG, Stamataki E, Rosic S, Konstantinides N, Jarvis E, Di Donfrancesco A, Pouchkina-Stantcheva N, Semon M, Grillo M, Bruce H, Kumar S, Siwanowicz I, Le A, Lemire A, Extavour C, Browne W, Wolff C, Averof M, et al
    eLife. 2016 Nov 16;5:e20062. doi: 10.7554/eLife.20062

    Parhyale hawaiensis is a blossoming model system for studies of developmental mechanisms and more recently adult regeneration. We have sequenced the genome allowing annotation of all key signaling pathways, small non-coding RNAs and transcription factors that will enhance ongoing functional studies. Parhayle is a member of the Malacostraca, which includes crustacean food crop species. We analysed the immunity related genes of Parhyale as an important comparative system for these species, where immunity related aquaculture problems have increased as farming has intensified. We also find that Parhyale and other species within Multicrustacea contain the enzyme sets necessary to perform lignocellulose digestion (wood eating), suggesting this ability may predate the diversification of this lineage. Our data provide an essential resource for further development of the Parhyale model. The first Malacostracan genome sequence will underpin ongoing comparative work in important food crop species and research investigating lignocellulose as energy source.

    Publication first appeared in BioRxiv on August 2, 2016. http://dx.doi.org/10.1101/065789

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    Pavlopoulos Lab
    07/28/16 | Non-insect crustacean models in developmental genetics including an encomium to Parhyale hawaiensis.
    Stamataki E, Pavlopoulos A
    Current Opinion in Genetics & Development. 2016 Jul 28;39:149-156. doi: 10.1016/j.gde.2016.07.004

    The impressive diversity of body plans, lifestyles and segmental specializations exhibited by crustaceans (barnacles, copepods, shrimps, crabs, lobsters and their kin) provides great material to address longstanding questions in evolutionary developmental biology. Recent advances in forward and reverse genetics and in imaging approaches applied in the amphipod Parhyale hawaiensis and other emerging crustacean model species have made it possible to probe the molecular and cellular basis of crustacean diversity. A number of biological and technical qualities like the slow tempo and holoblastic cleavage mode, the stereotypy of many cellular processes, the functional and morphological diversity of limbs along the body axis, and the availability of various experimental manipulations, have made Parhyale a powerful system to study normal development and regeneration.

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    Pavlopoulos Lab
    05/18/16 | Toll genes have an ancestral role in axis elongation.
    Benton MA, Pechmann M, Frey N, Stappert D, Conrads KH, Chen Y, Stamataki E, Pavlopoulos A, Roth S
    Current Biology : CB. 2016 May 18;26(12):1609-15. doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2016.04.055

    One of the key morphogenetic processes used during development is the controlled intercalation of cells between their neighbors. This process has been co-opted into a range of developmental events, and it also underlies an event that occurs in each major group of bilaterians: elongation of the embryo along the anterior-posterior axis [1]. In Drosophila, a novel component of this process was recently discovered by Paré et al., who showed that three Toll genes function together to drive cell intercalation during germband extension [2]. This finding raises the question of whether this role of Toll genes is an evolutionary novelty of flies or a general mechanism of embryonic morphogenesis. Here we show that the Toll gene function in axis elongation is, in fact, widely conserved among arthropods. First, we functionally demonstrate that two Toll genes are required for cell intercalation in the beetle Tribolium castaneum. We then show that these genes belong to a previously undescribed Toll subfamily and that members of this subfamily exhibit striped expression (as seen in Tribolium and previously reported in Drosophila [3-5]) in embryos of six other arthropod species spanning the entire phylum. Last, we show that two of these Toll genes are required for normal morphogenesis during anterior-posterior embryo elongation in the spider Parasteatoda tepidariorum, a member of the most basally branching arthropod lineage. From our findings, we hypothesize that Toll genes had a morphogenetic function in embryo elongation in the last common ancestor of all arthropods, which existed over 550 million years ago.

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