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Signal transduction at junctions: coupling adhesion and actomyosin dynamics at E-cadherin contacts

Signal transduction at junctions: coupling adhesion and actomyosin dynamics at E-cadherin contacts

 Cells are the building blocks of our bodies. Interactions between different cells are important to shape our developing bodies and maintain the organisation of our tissues in health. A range of diseases occur when those interactions are disturbed, including cancer and inflammation. 

Dr. Yap's laboratory is focused on understanding how cadherins cooperate with the actin cytoskeleton, long believed to be central to cadherin function. Their findings indicate that this cooperation involves a complex interplay between adhesion receptors and diverse distinct states of the cytoskeleton, coordinated by a variety of signalling pathways at the cell membrane. In particular, Dr. Yap's work demonstrates that cadherins function as adhesion-activated cell signalling receptors that stimulate pathways to regulate the actin cytoskeleton, thereby influencing cell shape, adhesion, and cell-cell cohesion. Relevant signals include the Rho family GTPases and Src family kinases. These affect a range of cytoskeletal regulators, including actin nucleators, cross-linking proteins, scaffolds and the myosins II and VI. The group aims to understand the dynamic spatial and temporal regulation of the cytoskeleton by cadherin signalling, with a view to understanding how these key elements are used during development and tissue maintenance, and how they are disrupted in human disease.

 

Date: 1/18/13, 12pm to 1pm
Time: 1/18/13, 12pm to 1pm
Location: One Baylor Plaza - Michael E. DeBakey Center - Room: M112
Directions: This room is a very quick walk from the MDACC central campus and is on the ground floor at Baylor.
Format: Seminar/Conference
Facilitator: Pierre McCrea, PhD
Speaker: Professor Alpha Yap, MD/ PhD
Sponsor: Pierre McCrea, PhD
Contact: Pierre McCrea, PhD - (713) 834-6277 - pdmccrea@mdanderson.org