Growth Control in the Drosophila Wing Imaginal Disc.

Speaker: Jia Gou

Date: 2021

Location: UBC, Online

Conference: PIMS Workshop on New Trends in Localized Patterns in PDES

Subject: Mathematics

Class: Scientific


How organ size is controlled during development has been a subject of scientific study for centuries, but the growth control mechanisms are still poorly understood. The Drosophila wing imaginal disc has widely been used as a model system to study the regulation of growth. Growth control in the Drosophila wing disc involves various local signals, including signaling pathways, mechanical signals, etc. We developed a model of the Hippo pathway, which is the core regulatory pathway that mediates cell proliferation and apoptosis in Drosophila and mammalian cells, and contains a core kinase mechanism that affects control of the cell cycle and growth. We investigated the regulatory role of two upstream components Fat and Ds on the downstream mediator Yki of the pathway, and provide explanations to some of the seemingly contradictory experimental results. We found that a number of non-intuitive experimental results can be explained by subtle changes in the balances between inputs to the Hippo pathway. Since signal transduction and growth control pathways are highly con-served across species and directly involved in tumor growth, much of what is learned about Drosophila will have relevance to growth control in mammalian systems. Our recent work on morphogen transport in the wing disc will also be discussed.