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Multiple signal transduction pathways within a single cell may share common components. In particular, seven different transmembrane helix receptors may activate identical pathways by interacting with the same G-proteins. Dictyostelium cells respond to cAMP using one such receptor, cAR1, coupled by a typical heterotrimeric G-protein to intracellular(More)
Activation of cAMP-dependent protein kinase (PKA) triggers terminal differentiation in Dictyostelium, without an obvious requirement for the G-protein-coupled adenylyl cyclase, ACA, or the osmosensory adenylyl cyclase, ACG. A third adenylyl cyclase, ACB, was recently detected in rapidly developing mutants. The specific characteristics of ACA, ACG, and ACB(More)
The social amoebas (Dictyostelia) display conditional multicellularity in a wide variety of forms. Despite widespread interest in Dictyostelium discoideum as a model system, almost no molecular data exist from the rest of the group. We constructed the first molecular phylogeny of the Dictyostelia with parallel small subunit ribosomal RNA and a-tubulin data(More)
The Amoebozoa constitute one of the primary divisions of eukaryotes, encompassing taxa of both biomedical and evolutionary importance, yet its genomic diversity remains largely unsampled. Here we present an analysis of a whole genome assembly of Acanthamoeba castellanii (Ac) the first representative from a solitary free-living amoebozoan. Ac encodes 15,455(More)
Cyclic di-(3′:5′)-guanosine monophosphate (c-di-GMP) is a major prokaryote signalling intermediate that is synthesized by diguanylate cyclases and triggers sessility and biofilm formation. We detected the first eukaryote diguanylate cyclases in all major groups of Dictyostelia. On food depletion, Dictyostelium discoideum amoebas collect into aggregates,(More)
BACKGROUND The social amoebae (Dictyostelia) are a diverse group of Amoebozoa that achieve multicellularity by aggregation and undergo morphogenesis into fruiting bodies with terminally differentiated spores and stalk cells. There are four groups of dictyostelids, with the most derived being a group that contains the model species Dictyostelium discoideum.(More)
Encystation and sporulation are crucial developmental transitions for solitary and social amoebae, respectively. Whereas little is known of encystation, sporulation requires both extra- and intracellular cAMP. After aggregation of social amoebae, extracellular cAMP binding to surface receptors and intracellular cAMP binding to cAMP-dependent protein kinase(More)
Phenotypic novelties can arise if integrated developmental pathways are expressed at new developmental stages and then recruited to serve new functions. We analyze the origin of a novel developmental trait of Dictyostelid amoebae: the evolution of cAMP as a developmental chemoattractant. We show that cAMP's role of attracting starving amoebae arose through(More)
We present evidence for the hypothesis that in multicellular structures of Dictyostelium, production of adenosine by hydrolysis of cAMP near the tip region prevents both generation of competing tips and differentiation of prespore cells near the tip, and thus establishes a "prestalk" region. We demonstrate that adenosine affects the immunological prespore(More)
Colony formation was the first step towards evolution of multicellularity in many macroscopic organisms. Dictyostelid social amoebas have used this strategy for over 600 Myr to form fruiting structures of increasing complexity. To understand in which order multicellular complexity evolved, we measured 24 phenotypic characters over 99 dictyostelid species.(More)