Rho-family small GTPases are required for cell polarization and directional sensing in Drosophila wound healing

Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2010 Apr 9;394(3):488-92. doi: 10.1016/j.bbrc.2010.02.124. Epub 2010 Feb 23.


A wound induces cell polarization, in which myosin II is localized at the rear end of individual cells in a migrating epithelial sheet of the Drosophila larval epidermis. Here, we use myosin localization to demonstrate that Rac1, Cdc42, and Rho1 are each required for cell polarization and directional sensing of the wound. The three GTPases are also required for actin cable formation at the wound leading edge. Rac1, Cdc42, and Rho1 act upstream of c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) to organize actin assembly. These results highlight the similarities between the molecular mechanism of Drosophila wound healing and those of Drosophila embryonic dorsal closure and the chemotactic response of Dictyostelium and leukocytes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Actins / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Cell Polarity*
  • Drosophila Proteins / genetics
  • Drosophila Proteins / physiology*
  • Drosophila melanogaster / enzymology
  • Drosophila melanogaster / physiology*
  • JNK Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases / metabolism
  • Myosins / metabolism
  • Wound Healing*
  • cdc42 GTP-Binding Protein / genetics
  • cdc42 GTP-Binding Protein / physiology*
  • rac GTP-Binding Proteins / genetics
  • rac GTP-Binding Proteins / physiology*
  • rho GTP-Binding Proteins / genetics
  • rho GTP-Binding Proteins / physiology*


  • Actins
  • Drosophila Proteins
  • Rac1 protein, Drosophila
  • JNK Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases
  • Myosins
  • Rho1 protein, Drosophila
  • cdc42 GTP-Binding Protein
  • rac GTP-Binding Proteins
  • rho GTP-Binding Proteins