Mechanics, signaling - and making sense of feedback

Image - Mechanics, signaling - and making sense of feedback
Event date :
Tuesday, August 15, 2017 - 11:00
Event Type :
Location :
AGSM building (G27), Ground floor, Colonial Theatre
Booking deadline: 
Contact for inquiries
Maté Biro:

EMBL Australia Special Seminar



Prof. Alpha Yap, Professorial Research Fellow, Institute for Molecular Bioscience, UQ



The Cell Motility & Mechanobiology group and SoMS are proud to host Prof. Alpha Yap for a

special seminar at 11am-12pm, August 15th 2017.



Prof. Yap’s Epithelial morphogenesis & Cell locomotion group studies the role of cadherin cell

adhesion molecules in morphogenesis and tumour development. E-cadherin is a key mediator

of cell-cell recognition. It participates in tissue patterning and its dysfunction contributes to

tumour progression and invasion.


Mechanics, signaling - and making sense of feedback


Abstract Actomyosin contractility is a fundamental determinant of cellular behaviour, making critical contributions to processes as diverse as cell division, cell locomotion, and tissue organization. As such, its expression is precisely controlled by cell singling. In particular, spatiotemporal patterns of signaling by the RhoA GTPase determine subcellular patterns of contractility. But how these signaling zones are established is less well-understood. We have recently discovered that mechanochemical feedback from the RhoA effector Myosin II constitutes a novel layer of regulation that is necessary for RhoA signaling to support contractility at cell-cell junctions. In this talk, I’ll endeavour to provide an overview of our findings and describe a new mechanism that we have discovered.



• Smutny, M., H.L. Cox, J. Leerberg, E.M. Kovacs, M.A. Conti, C. Ferguson, N.A. Hamilton, R.G. Parton, R.S. Adelstein and A.S. Yap (2010). Myosin II isoforms identify distinct functional modules that support integrity of the epithelial zonula adherens. Nature Cell Biology 12: 696-702

• Ratheesh, A.*, G.A. Gomez*, R. Priya, S. Verma, E.M. Kovacs, K. Jiang, N.H. Brown, A. Akhmanova, S.J. Stehbens, and A.S. Yap (2012). Centralspindlin and α-catenin regulate Rho signaling at the epithelial zonula adherens. Nature Cell Biology 14, 818-828

• Priya, R., G.A. Gomez, S. Budnar, S. Verma, H.L. Cox, N.A. Hamilton and A.S. Yap (2015). Feedback regulation through Myosin II confers robustness on Rho signaling at E-cadherin junctions. Nature Cell Biology 17, 1282-93.

• Priya, R., G.A. Gomez, S. Budnar, B.R. Acharya, A. Czirok, A.S. Yap and Z. Neufeld (2017). Bistable front dynamics in a contractile medium: opposing travelling wave fronts and advection define stable zones of RhoA signaling. PLoS Computational Biology 13, e1005411.

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