Chemotaxis is the directed movement of a cell towards a gradient of chemicals such as chemokines or growth factors. This phenomenon can be studied in organisms ranging from bacteria to mammalian cells, and here we will focus on eukaryotic amoeboid chemotaxis. Chemotactic responses are mediated by two major classes of receptors: GPCR's and RTK's, with multiple pathways signaling downstream of them, certain ones functioning in parallel. In this review we address two important features of amoeboid chemotaxis that will be important for further advances in the field. First, the application of in vivo imaging will be critical for providing insight into the functional requirements for chemotactic responses. We will briefly cover a number of systems in which in vivo imaging is providing new insights. Second, due to the network-type design of signaling pathways of eukaryotic chemotaxis, more refined phenotypic analysis will be necessary, and we will discuss recent analyses of the role of the phosphoinositide 3-kinase pathway in this light. We will close with some speculations regarding future applications of more detailed in vivo analysis and mechanistic understanding of eukaryotic amoeboid chemotaxis.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
- Cell Biology