PerspectiveCell Biology

Chemoattractant Signaling in Dictyostelium: Adaptation and Amplification

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Sci. Signal.  28 Feb 2012:
Vol. 5, Issue 213, pp. pe8
DOI: 10.1126/scisignal.2002897

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The social amoebae Dictyostelium discoideum has long proved a powerful model organism for studying how cells sense and interpret chemoattractant gradients. Because of the rich behavior observed in its response to chemoattractants, as well as the complex nature of the signaling pathways involved, this research has attracted and benefited from the use of theoretical models. Recent quantitative experiments provide support for a popular model: the local excitation, global inhibition mechanism of gradient sensing. Here, I discuss these findings and suggest some important open problems.

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