The developmental regulation of single-cell motility in Dictyostelium discoideum

Dev Biol. 1986 Jan;113(1):218-27. doi: 10.1016/0012-1606(86)90124-7.


The velocity of single amebae in the absence of a chemotactic signal has been analyzed during growth, development, rapid recapitulation, and dedifferentiation in the cellular slime mold Dictyostelium discoideum. It is demonstrated that (1) the velocity of axenically grown cells in half that of bacterially grown cells, (2) the velocity of bacterially grown cells decreased to roughly the same low level as axenically grown cells approximately 5 hr after the removal of exogeneous bacteria, (3) the velocity remains low for a 7-hr period preceding the onset of aggregation in both axenically and bacterially grown cells, (4) the velocity increases transiently at the onset of aggregation for both axenically and bacterially grown cells, (5) the velocity decreases to a very low level after the formation of loose aggregates and remains at that level at least through the early culminate I stage, (6) the velocity is not stimulated in 13-hr developing cells (finger stage) by inducing rapid recapitulation, (7) the velocity decreases after the erasure event in cultures of 7-hr developing cells (ripple stage) stimulated to undergo dedifferentiation, but the inhibition of the erasure event by the addition of 10(-4) M cAMP does not block this decrease. These results demonstrate that the basal level of single-cell motility in growing cultures is significantly influenced by the nutrient composition of the supporting medium, and that the transient increase in single-cell motility at the onset of aggregation is under the rigid control of the initial developmental program. Both rapid recapitulation and the program of dedifferentiation appear to have no influence on the basal level of single-cell motility.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Cell Differentiation
  • Cell Movement*
  • Dictyostelium / growth & development*
  • Dictyostelium / physiology
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