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Endogenous Activation Patterns of Cdc42 GTPase Within Drosophila Embryos

Science, 5 June 2009
Vol. 324, Issue 5932, p. 1338-1340
DOI: 10.1126/science.1170615

Endogenous Activation Patterns of Cdc42 GTPase Within Drosophila Embryos

  1. Daichi Kamiyama,
  2. Akira Chiba*
  1. Department of Biology and Miami Institute of Molecular Imaging and Computation, University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL 33146, USA.
  2. *To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: akira.chiba{at}


Knowing when and where a given protein is activated within intact animals assists in elucidating its in vivo function. With the use of a genetically encoded A-probe (activation bioprobe), we revealed that Cdc42 guanosine triphosphatase (GTPase) remains inactive within Drosophila embryos during the first two-thirds of embryogenesis. Within the central nervous system where Cdc42 activity first becomes up-regulated, individual neurons display patterns restricted to specific subcellular compartments. At both organismal and cellular levels, Cdc42’s endogenous activation patterns in the wild type allow predictions of where loss-of-function phenotypes will emerge in cdc42/cdc42 mutants. Genetic tests support the importance of suppressing endogenous Cdc42 activities until needed. Thus, bioprobe-assisted analysis uncovers how ubiquitously expressed signaling proteins control cellular events through continual regulation of their activities within animals.

  • Received for publication 7 January 2009.
  • Accepted for publication 20 April 2009.


D. Kamiyama and A. Chiba, Endogenous Activation Patterns of Cdc42 GTPase Within Drosophila Embryos. Science 324, 1338-1340 (2009).

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