Daam2 couples translocation and clustering of Wnt receptor signalosomes through Rac1

J Cell Sci. 2021 Jan 25;134(2):jcs251140. doi: 10.1242/jcs.251140.


Wnt signaling plays a critical role in development across species and is dysregulated in a host of human diseases. A key step in signal transduction is the formation of Wnt receptor signalosomes, during which a large number of components translocate to the membrane, cluster together and amplify downstream signaling. However, the molecular processes that coordinate these events remain poorly defined. Here, we show that Daam2 regulates canonical Wnt signaling via the PIP2-PIP5K axis through its association with Rac1. Clustering of Daam2-mediated Wnt receptor complexes requires both Rac1 and PIP5K, and PIP5K promotes membrane localization of these complexes in a Rac1-dependent manner. Importantly, the localization of Daam2 complexes and Daam2-mediated canonical Wnt signaling is dependent upon actin polymerization. These studies - in chick spinal cord and human and monkey cell lines - highlight novel roles for Rac1 and the actin cytoskeleton in the regulation of canonical Wnt signaling and define Daam2 as a key scaffolding hub that coordinates membrane translocation and signalosome clustering.

Keywords: Chick spinal cord; Daam2; Dorsal patterning; PIP5K; Rac1; Wnt signalosome.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Carrier Proteins*
  • Cell Line
  • Chickens
  • Cluster Analysis
  • Haplorhini
  • Humans
  • Mice
  • Microfilament Proteins
  • Phosphorylation
  • Spinal Cord / metabolism
  • Wnt Signaling Pathway*
  • rac1 GTP-Binding Protein / genetics
  • rac1 GTP-Binding Protein / metabolism
  • rho GTP-Binding Proteins


  • Carrier Proteins
  • Microfilament Proteins
  • rac1 GTP-Binding Protein
  • rho GTP-Binding Proteins