Now showing 1 - 3 of 3
  • Publication
    Bistability in the Rac1, PAK, and RhoA Signaling Network Drives Actin Cytoskeleton Dynamics and Cell Motility Switches
    Dynamic interactions between RhoA and Rac1, members of the Rho small GTPase family, play a vital role in the control of cell migration. Using predictive mathematical modeling, mass spectrometry-based quantitation of network components, and experimental validation in MDA-MB-231 mesenchymal breast cancer cells, we show that a network containing Rac1, RhoA, and PAK family kinases can produce bistable, switch-like responses to a graded PAK inhibition. Using a small chemical inhibitor of PAK, we demonstrate that cellular RhoA and Rac1 activation levels respond in a history-dependent, bistable manner to PAK inhibition. Consequently, we show that downstream signaling, actin dynamics, and cell migration also behave in a bistable fashion, displaying switches and hysteresis in response to PAK inhibition. Our results demonstrate that PAK is a critical component in the Rac1-RhoA inhibitory crosstalk that governs bistable GTPase activity, cell morphology, and cell migration switches.
      322Scopus© Citations 109
  • Publication
    HGF induces epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition by modulating the mammalian Hippo/MST2 and ISG15 pathways
    Epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) is a fundamental cell differentiation/dedifferentiation process which is associated with dramatic morphological changes. Formerly polarized and immobile epithelial cells which form cell junctions and cobblestone-like cell sheets undergo a transition into highly motile, elongated, mesenchymal cells lacking cell-to-cell adhesions. To explore how the proteome is affected during EMT we profiled protein expression and tracked cell biological markers in Madin-Darby kidney epithelial cells undergoing hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) induced EMT. We were able to identify and quantify over 4000 proteins by mass spectrometry. Enrichment analysis of this revealed that expression of proteins associated with the ubiquitination machinery was induced, whereas expression of proteins regulating apoptotic pathways was suppressed. We show that both the mammalian Hippo/MST2 and the ISG15 pathways are regulated at the protein level by ubiquitin ligases. Inhibition of the Hippo pathway by overexpression of either ITCH or A-Raf promotes HGF-induced EMT. Conversely, ISG15 overexpression is sufficient to induce cell scattering and an elongated morphology without external stimuli. Thus, we demonstrate for the first time that the Hippo/MST2 and ISG15 pathways are regulated during growth-factor induced EMT.
      823Scopus© Citations 59
  • Publication
    Linear Approaches to Intramolecular Förster Resonance Energy Transfer Probe Measurements for Quantitative Modeling
    Numerous unimolecular, genetically-encoded Förster Resonance Energy Transfer (FRET) probes for monitoring biochemical activities in live cells have been developed over the past decade. As these probes allow for collection of high frequency, spatially resolved data on signaling events in live cells and tissues, they are an attractive technology for obtaining data to develop quantitative, mathematical models of spatiotemporal signaling dynamics. However, to be useful for such purposes the observed FRET from such probes should be related to a biological quantity of interest through a defined mathematical relationship, which is straightforward when this relationship is linear, and can be difficult otherwise. First, we show that only in rare circumstances is the observed FRET linearly proportional to a biochemical activity. Therefore in most cases FRET measurements should only be compared either to explicitly modeled probes or to concentrations of products of the biochemical activity, but not to activities themselves. Importantly, we find that FRET measured by standard intensity-based, ratiometric methods is inherently non-linear with respect to the fraction of probes undergoing FRET. Alternatively, we find that quantifying FRET either via (1) fluorescence lifetime imaging (FLIM) or (2) ratiometric methods where the donor emission intensity is divided by the directly-excited acceptor emission intensity (denoted Ralt) is linear with respect to the fraction of probes undergoing FRET. This linearity property allows one to calculate the fraction of active probes based on the FRET measurement. Thus, our results suggest that either FLIM or ratiometric methods based on Ralt are the preferred techniques for obtaining quantitative data from FRET probe experiments for mathematical modeling purposes.
      192Scopus© Citations 11