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dc.contributor.advisorGibson, Matthew C
dc.contributor.advisorKinsey, William H
dc.contributor.authorFritz, Ashleigh E.
dc.date.accessioned2017-01-08T18:53:20Z
dc.date.available2017-01-08T18:53:20Z
dc.date.issued2014-05-31
dc.date.submitted2014
dc.identifier.otherhttp://dissertations.umi.com/ku:13287
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/1808/22520
dc.description.abstractThe transition to animal multicellularity involved the evolution of single cells organizing into sheets of tissue. The advent of tissues allowed for specialization and diversification, which led to the formation of complex structures and a variety of body plans. These epithelial tissues undergo morphogenesis during animal development, and the establishment and maintenance of their polarity and integrity is crucial for homeostasis and prevention of pathogenesis. This architecture is dynamically maintained through a variety of cellular processes including the regulation of intracellular transport, cytoskeletal modulation, and cell adhesion. While studies in established model organisms and cell culture have contributed to our current knowledge of these processes, evolutionary and in vivo perspectives are largely lacking. Our efforts to gain a better understanding of epithelial biology have centered around two main themes: 1) Ancient mechanisms of morphogenesis during animal development and 2) Modulation of epithelial architecture during pathogenesis. First, to address the ancient mechanisms of epithelial morphogenesis, we examine tentacle development in the cnidarian Nematostella vectensis as a model of outgrowth formation. Through drug treatments, transcriptional analysis and imaging experiments, our study identifies molecular and cellular mechanisms that act during elongation of the tentacles and body column. At the onset of tentacle development, we observe an ectodermal placode that forms at the oral end of the animal, which is transcriptionally patterned into four tentacle buds. Subsequently during morphogenesis, our results show that cell shape changes and cell rearrangements act during elongation of the bud into a mature tentacle. In the body column during elongation, we also observe a period of oriented cell divisions along the oral-aboral axis. Together, our results reveal ancient cellular and molecular mechanisms of epithelial morphogenesis during development in an early-branching metazoan. Second, to explore alterations in epithelial architecture and integrity during bacterial pathogenesis, we express a Shigella bacterial virulence protein, VirA, in Drosophila and vertebrate tissue. Previous reports on the function of VirA have only employed in vitro and cell culture assays, so the function of VirA in an epithelial context remains largely unknown. Through in vivo expression and imaging experiments, we show that VirA expression in Drosophila disrupts epithelial architecture and cell polarity, with no discernible effects on microtubule stability. In the Drosophila salivary gland and eye imaginal disc, cells expressing VirA round and lose polarity markers. We observe a similar apical cell rounding phenotype when VirA is expressed in chick neural tube, implying a conserved mechanism of VirA function in vertebrates. Finally, we demonstrate a mislocalization of Rab11 in VirA expressing epithelia, suggesting a potential defect in vesicle trafficking. Taken together, our results reveal a novel function for VirA in disruption of cell polarity or adhesion, possibly through vesicle trafficking, leading to a breakdown of epithelial integrity facilitating the pathogenesis of Shigella in the human intestinal epithelium.
dc.format.extent190 pages
dc.language.isoen
dc.publisherUniversity of Kansas
dc.rightsCopyright held by the author.
dc.subjectDevelopmental biology
dc.subjectCellular biology
dc.subjectEvolution & development
dc.subjectepithelial integrity
dc.subjectepithelial morphogenesis
dc.subjectNematostella
dc.subjectplacode
dc.subjectShigella
dc.subjectVirA
dc.titleMechanisms of epithelial morphogenesis and integrity during Nematostella vectensis development and Shigella pathogenesis
dc.typeDissertation
dc.contributor.cmtememberGibson, Matthew C
dc.contributor.cmtememberKinsey, William H
dc.contributor.cmtememberChistenson, Lane K
dc.contributor.cmtememberGerton, Jennifer L
dc.contributor.cmtememberRongish, Brenda J
dc.thesis.degreeDisciplineAnatomy & Cell Biology
dc.thesis.degreeLevelPh.D.
dc.rights.accessrightsopenAccess


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