Analysis of cellular behavior and cytoskeletal dynamics reveal a constriction mechanism driving optic cup morphogenesis
2016
Authors: Nicolás-Pérez M, Kuchling F, Letelier J, Polvillo R, Wittbrodt J, Martínez-Morales JR
CellNetworks People: Wittbrodt Joachim
Journal: Elife. 2016 Oct 31;5. pii: e15797. doi: 10.7554/eLife.15797

Contractile actomyosin networks have been shown to power tissue morphogenesis. Although the basic cellular machinery generating mechanical tension appears largely conserved, tensions propagate in unique ways within each tissue. Here we use the vertebrate eye as a paradigm to investigate how tensions are generated and transmitted during the folding of a neuroepithelial layer. We record membrane pulsatile behavior and actomyosin dynamics during zebrafish optic cup morphogenesis by live imaging. We show that retinal neuroblasts undergo fast oscillations and that myosin condensation correlates with episodic contractions that progressively reduce basal feet area. Interference with lamc1 function impairs basal contractility and optic cup folding. Mapping of tensile forces by laser cutting uncover a developmental window in which local ablations trigger the displacement of the entire tissue. Our work shows that optic cup morphogenesis is driven by a constriction mechanism and indicates that supra-cellular transmission of mechanical tension depends on ECM attachment.