Both chemotaxis and phagocytosis are ancient processes, probably dating from primitive, phagotrophic cells, and both use the actin cytoskeleton and cortex to produce projections of the plasma membrane. Both are organised by signalling events at the plasma membrane, which control the location and shape of the projection formed. Small G-proteins and phosphoinositides are prominent in this signalling, and their dynamics are such as to produce discrete, ‘activated’ patches of membrane where actin polymerisation occurs.
Because chemotaxis and macropinocytosis are complicated, conserved processes, yet poorly understood, we use a powerful model system – Dictyostelium amoebae – to study them.
We also have an interest in polyketide signalling and sex determination in Dictyostelium.
- Bloomfield, G., Traynor, D., Sander, S. P., Veltman, D. M., Pachebat, J. A. and Kay, R. R. (2015)
Neurofibromin controls macropinocytosis and phagocytosis in Dictyostelium
eLife 4: e04940
- Clark, J., Kay, R.R., Kielkowska, A., Niewczas, I., Fets, L., Oxley, D., Stephens, L.R. and Hawkins, P.T. (2014)
Dictyostelium uses ether-linked inositol phospholipids for intracellular signalling.
EMBO 33: 2188-2200
- Zatulovskiy, E., Tyson, R., Bretschneider, T. and Kay, R.R. (2014)
Bleb-driven chemotaxis of Dictyostelium cells.
J. Cell Biol. 204: 1027-1044
- Fets, L., Nichols, J. and Kay, R.R. (2014)
A PIP5 kinase essential for efficient chemotactic signaling.
Curr. Biol. 24: 415-421
- Bloomfield, G., Skelton, J., Ivens, A., Tanaka, Y. and Kay, R.R. (2010)
Sex determination in the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum.
Science 330: 1533-1536
- Kay, R. R., Langridge, P., Traynor, D. and Hoeller, O. (2008)
Changing directions in the study of chemotaxis.
Nature Rev Mol Cell Biol 9: 455-463.
- Hoeller, O. and Kay, R.R. (2008)
Chemotaxis in the absence of PIP3 gradients.
Curr Biol 17: 813-817.
- Eichinger, L. et al. (2005)
The genome of the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum.
Nature 435: 43-57
- David Traynor
- Gareth Bloomfield
- Thomas Williams
- Peggy Paschke
- Callum McKenzie