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ZFIN ID: ZDB-PUB-170119-4
Platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) signaling directs cardiomyocyte movement toward the midline during heart tube assembly
Bloomekatz, J., Singh, R., Prall, O.W., Dunn, A.C., Vaughan, M., Loo, C.S., Harvey, R.P., Yelon, D.
Date: 2017
Source: eLIFE 6: (Journal)
Registered Authors: Bloomekatz, Joshua, Yelon, Deborah
Keywords: developmental biology, mouse, stem cells, zebrafish
MeSH Terms:
  • Animals
  • Cell Movement*
  • Gene Knockout Techniques
  • Heart/embryology*
  • Mice
  • Morphogenesis
  • Myocytes, Cardiac/drug effects*
  • Myocytes, Cardiac/physiology*
  • Platelet-Derived Growth Factor/metabolism*
  • Receptor, Platelet-Derived Growth Factor alpha/genetics
  • Receptor, Platelet-Derived Growth Factor alpha/metabolism*
  • Signal Transduction*
  • Time-Lapse Imaging
  • Zebrafish
PubMed: 28098558 Full text @ Elife
Communication between neighboring tissues plays a central role in guiding organ morphogenesis. During heart tube assembly, interactions with the adjacent endoderm control the medial movement of cardiomyocytes, a process referred to as cardiac fusion. However, the molecular underpinnings of this endodermal-myocardial relationship remain unclear. Here, we show an essential role for platelet-derived growth factor receptor alpha (Pdgfra) in directing cardiac fusion. Mutation of pdgfra disrupts heart tube assembly in both zebrafish and mouse. Timelapse analysis of individual cardiomyocyte trajectories reveals misdirected cells in zebrafish pdgfra mutants, suggesting that PDGF signaling steers cardiomyocytes toward the midline during cardiac fusion. Intriguingly, the ligand pdgfaa is expressed in the endoderm medial to the pdgfra-expressing myocardial precursors. Ectopic expression of pdgfaa interferes with cardiac fusion, consistent with an instructive role for PDGF signaling. Together, these data uncover a novel mechanism through which endodermal-myocardial communication can guide the cell movements that initiate cardiac morphogenesis.