Marta Mira-Osuna, Roland Le Borgne

Assembly, dynamics and remodeling of epithelial cell junctions throughout development

  • Developmental Biology
  • Molecular Biology

ABSTRACT Cell junctions play key roles in epithelial integrity. During development, when epithelia undergo extensive morphogenesis, these junctions must be remodeled in order to maintain mechanochemical barriers and ensure the cohesion of the tissue. In this Review, we present a comprehensive and integrated description of junctional remodeling mechanisms in epithelial cells during development, from embryonic to adult epithelia. We largely focus on Drosophila, as quantitative analyses in this organism have provided a detailed characterization of the molecular mechanisms governing cell topologies, and discuss the conservation of these mechanisms across metazoans. We consider how changes at the molecular level translate to tissue-scale irreversible deformations, exploring the composition and assembly of cellular interfaces to unveil how junctions are remodeled to preserve tissue homeostasis during cell division, intercalation, invagination, ingression and extrusion.

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