Rapid diffusion-state switching underlies stable cytoplasmic gradients in the Caenorhabditis elegans zygote

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Youjun WuErik E Griffin

Abstract

Protein concentration gradients organize cells and tissues and commonly form through diffusion away from a local source of protein. Interestingly, during the asymmetric division of the Caenorhabditis elegans zygote, the RNA-binding proteins MEX-5 and PIE-1 form opposing concentration gradients in the absence of a local source. In this study, we use near-total internal reflection fluorescence (TIRF) imaging and single-particle tracking to characterize the reaction/diffusion dynamics that maintain the MEX-5 and PIE-1 gradients. Our findings suggest that both proteins interconvert between fast-diffusing and slow-diffusing states on timescales that are much shorter (seconds) than the timescale of gradient formation (minutes). The kinetics of diffusion-state switching are strongly polarized along the anterior/posterior (A/P) axis by the PAR polarity system such that fast-diffusing MEX-5 and PIE-1 particles are approximately symmetrically distributed, whereas slow-diffusing particles are highly enriched in the anterior and posterior cytoplasm, respectively. Using mathematical modeling, we show that local differences in the kinetics of diffusion-state switching can rapidly generate stable concentration gradients over a broad range of ...Continue Reading

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Citations

Nov 24, 2018·Biological Reviews of the Cambridge Philosophical Society·Ananya Barui, Pallab Datta
Dec 13, 2018·Molecular Biology of the Cell·Youjun WuErik E Griffin
Dec 28, 2018·Chemistry : a European Journal·Emily P BentleyAshok A Deniz
Mar 30, 2019·Traffic·Elisabeth A Marnik, Dustin L Updike
Mar 3, 2020·Development, Growth & Differentiation·Sungrim Seirin-Lee
Aug 25, 2020·Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences·Alicia G GubiedaJosana Rodriguez
Jun 10, 2019·The Journal of Chemical Physics·S D Lawley, J B Madrid
Apr 20, 2019·Physical Review. E·Paul C BressloffPatrick Murphy
Sep 6, 2018·Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America·Andrew W Folkmann, Geraldine Seydoux
Dec 29, 2020·ELife·Vahe GalstyanRob Phillips
Feb 11, 2021·Nature Communications·Da-Wei LinHsiao-Chun Huang
Feb 9, 2021·Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology·Amelia J Kim, Erik E Griffin
Feb 18, 2021·Bulletin of Mathematical Biology·Sungrim Seirin-Lee
Jun 8, 2021·Journal of Mathematical Biology·Yoshihisa Morita, Sungrim Seirin-Lee
Jun 9, 2021·Communications Biology·Natasha S Savage
Sep 11, 2021·Nature Communications·Govind Menon, J Krishnan

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