Teaching Resource

Spatial and Temporal Dynamics of Signaling Components Involved in the Control of Chemotaxis in Dictyostelium discoideum

Science's STKE  25 May 2004:
Vol. 2004, Issue 234, pp. tr3
DOI: 10.1126/stke.2342004tr3


This animation shows the redistribution of several proteins during the chemotactic response of the single-celled organism Dictyostelium discoideum to the chemoattractant cAMP. Much like neutrophils, this organism is able to sense and move toward very shallow gradients of chemoattractant. Mutant strains carrying mutations in genes encoding various signaling components are available and, thus, D. discoideum serves as a model organism for the study of the cellular mechanisms that control chemotaxis and amplification of a signaling gradient across a single cell. The animation would be useful in depicting the dynamic nature of signal transduction, the ability of cells to polarize to allow for directional movement, and the spatial and temporal changes in the activity of specific proteins that accompany chemotactic responses.