Signaling networks that regulate cell migration

Peter Devreotes, Alan Rick Horwitz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Stimuli that promote cell migration, such as chemokines, cytokines, and growth factors in metazoans and cyclic AMP in Dictyostelium, activate signaling pathways that control organization of the actin cytoskeleton and adhesion complexes. The Rho-family GTPases are a key convergence point of these pathways. Their effectors include actin regulators such as formins, members of theWASP/WAVE familyand the Arp2/3 complex, and themyosin II motor protein. Pathways that link to the Rho GTPases include Ras GTPases, TorC2, and PI3K. Many of the molecules involved form gradients within cells, which define the front and rear of migrating cells, and are also established in related cellular behaviors such as neuronal growth cone extension and cytokinesis. The signaling molecules that regulate migration can be integrated to provide a model of network function. The network displays biochemical excitability seen as spontaneouswaves of activation that propagate along the cell cortex. These events coordinate cell movement and can be biased by external cues to bring about directed migration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalCold Spring Harbor Perspectives in Biology
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


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