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Chemotaxis is the result of a refined interplay among various intracellular molecules that process spatial and temporal information. Here we present a modular scheme of the complex interactions between the front and the back of cells that allows them to navigate. First, at the front of the cell, activated Rho-type GTPases induce actin polymerization and(More)
Binding of ligand to its receptor is a stochastic process that exhibits fluctuations in time and space. In chemotaxis, this leads to a noisy input signal. Therefore, in a gradient of chemoattractant, the cell may occasionally experience a "wrong" gradient of occupied receptors. We obtained a simple equation for P(pos), the probability that half of the cell(More)
Small chemotactic cells like Dictyostelium and neutrophils transduce shallow spatial chemoattractant gradients into strongly localized intracellular responses. We show that the capacity of a second messenger to establish and maintain localized signals, is mainly determined by its dispersion range, lambda = the square root of D(m)/k(-1), which must be small(More)
Phototransduction in Drosophila is mediated by a phospholipase C (PLC) cascade culminating in activation of transient receptor potential (TRP) channels. Ca(2+) influx via these channels is required for light adaptation, but although several molecular targets of Ca(2+)-dependent feedback have been identified, their contribution to adaptation is unclear. By(More)
BACKGROUND In fly photoreceptors, light is focused onto a photosensitive waveguide, the rhabdomere, consisting of tens of thousands of microvilli. Each microvillus is capable of generating elementary responses, quantum bumps, in response to single photons using a stochastically operating phototransduction cascade. Whereas much is known about the cascade(More)
The role of PI(3,4,5)P(3) in Dictyostelium signal transduction and chemotaxis was investigated using the PI3-kinase inhibitor LY294002 and pi3k-null cells. The increase of PI(3,4,5)P(3) levels after stimulation with the chemoattractant cAMP was blocked >95% by 60 microM LY294002 with half-maximal effect at 5 microM. This correlated well with the inhibition(More)
BACKGROUND Phototransduction in microvillar photoreceptors is mediated via G protein-coupled phospholipase C (PLC), but how PLC activation leads to the opening of the light-sensitive TRPC channels (TRP and TRPL) remains unresolved. In Drosophila, InsP(3) appears not to be involved, and recent studies have implicated lipid products of PLC activity, e.g.,(More)
Phototransduction in flies is the fastest known G protein-coupled signaling cascade, but how this performance is achieved remains unclear. Here, we investigate the mechanism and role of rhodopsin inactivation. We determined the lifetime of activated rhodopsin (metarhodopsin = M( *)) in whole-cell recordings from Drosophila photoreceptors by measuring the(More)
Many eukaryotic cells move in the direction of a chemical gradient. Several assays have been developed to measure this chemotactic response, but no complete mathematical models of the spatial and temporal gradients are available to describe the fundamental principles of chemotaxis. Here we provide analytical solutions for the gradients formed by release of(More)
In addition to experimental studies, computational models provide valuable information about colony development in scleractinian corals. Using our simulation model, we show how environmental factors such as nutrient distribution and light availability affect growth patterns of coral colonies. To compare the simulated coral growth forms with those of real(More)