Actomyosin II contractility in epithelial cell plays an essential role in tension-dependent adhesion strengthening. One key unsettling question is how cellular contraction transmits force to the nascent cell-cell adhesion when there is no stable attachment between the nascent adhesion complex and actin filament. Here, we show that myosin-1c is localized to the lateral membrane of polarized epithelial cells and facilitates the coupling between actin and cell-cell adhesion. Knockdown of myosin-1c compromised the integrity of the lateral membrane, reduced the generation of tension at E-cadherin, decreased the strength of cell-cell cohesion in an epithelial cell monolayer and prevented force-dependent recruitment of junctional α-actinin. Application of exogenous force to cell-cell adhesions in a myosin-1c-knockdown cell monolayer fully rescued the localization defect of α-actinin, indicating that junction mechanoregulation remains intact in myosin-1c-depleted cells. Our study identifies a role of myosin-1c in force transmission at the lateral cell-cell interface and underscores a non-junctional contribution to tension-dependent junction regulation.
Keywords: Cell–cell adhesion; Junction; Mechanobiology; Myosin; Synaptopodin; α-actinin.
© 2018. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.