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Science 336 (6082): 724-727

Copyright © 2012 by the American Association for the Advancement of Science

Mechanical Control of Morphogenesis by Fat/Dachsous/Four-Jointed Planar Cell Polarity Pathway

Floris Bosveld,1,* Isabelle Bonnet,1,* Boris Guirao,1,* Sham Tlili,1,{dagger} Zhimin Wang,1 Ambre Petitalot,1 Raphaël Marchand,1 Pierre-Luc Bardet,1 Philippe Marcq,2 François Graner,1 Yohanns Bellaïche1,{ddagger}

Abstract: During animal development, several planar cell polarity (PCP) pathways control tissue shape by coordinating collective cell behavior. Here, we characterize by means of multiscale imaging epithelium morphogenesis in the Drosophila dorsal thorax and show how the Fat/Dachsous/Four-jointed PCP pathway controls morphogenesis. We found that the proto-cadherin Dachsous is polarized within a domain of its tissue-wide expression gradient. Furthermore, Dachsous polarizes the myosin Dachs, which in turn promotes anisotropy of junction tension. By combining physical modeling with quantitative image analyses, we determined that this tension anisotropy defines the pattern of local tissue contraction that contributes to shaping the epithelium mainly via oriented cell rearrangements. Our results establish how tissue planar polarization coordinates the local changes of cell mechanical properties to control tissue morphogenesis.

1 Polarity, Division and Morphogenesis Team, Institut Curie, CNRS UMR 3215, INSERM U934, 26 Rue d’Ulm, 75248 Paris Cedex 05, France.
2 Laboratoire Physico-Chimie Curie, Institut Curie, CNRS UMR 168, Université Pierre et Marie Curie, 26 Rue d’Ulm, 75248 Paris Cedex 05, France.

* These authors contributed equally to this work.

{dagger} Present address: Matière et Systèmes Complexes, Université Paris Diderot, CNRS UMR 7057, 10 Rue Alice Domon et Léonie Duquet, 75205 Paris Cedex 13, France.

{ddagger} To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: yohanns.bellaiche{at}

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