University of California, Los Angeles | United States
Edward De Robertis studies how long-range cell communication between the dorsal and ventral sides of the embryo occurs through the diffusion of growth factor antagonists. The discovery of Chordin, a BMP antagonist, provided a new paradigm in which facilitated diffusion of a morphogen takes place in the narrow extracellular space that separates the ectoderm from the endomesoderm. This gradient is further integrated with Wnt signaling through the sequestration of the enzyme GSK3 inside multivesicular endosomes.
Keywords: Gradient formation / morphogens / Wnt signaling