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In vivo collective cell migration requires an LPAR2-dependent increase in tissue fluidity

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineJournal articlepeer-review

  • Sei Kuriyama
  • Eric Theveneau
  • Alexandre Benedetto
  • Maddy Parsons
  • Masamitsu Tanaka
  • Guillaume Charras
  • Alexandre Kabla
  • Roberto Mayor
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>7/07/2014
<mark>Journal</mark>Journal of Cell Biology
Issue number1
Number of pages15
Pages (from-to)113-127
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English


Collective cell migration (CCM) and epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) are common to cancer and morphogenesis, and are often considered to be mutually exclusive in spite of the fact that many cancer and embryonic cells that have gone through EMT still cooperate to migrate collectively. Here we use neural crest (NC) cells to address the question of how cells that have down-regulated cell-cell adhesions can migrate collectively. NC cell dissociation relies on a qualitative and quantitative change of the cadherin repertoire. We found that the level of cell-cell adhesion is precisely regulated by internalization of N-cadherin downstream of lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) receptor 2. Rather than promoting the generation of single, fully mesenchymal cells, this reduction of membrane N-cadherin only triggers a partial mesenchymal phenotype. This intermediate phenotype is characterized by an increase in tissue fluidity akin to a solid-like-to-fluid-like transition. This change of plasticity allows cells to migrate under physical constraints without abolishing cell cooperation required for collectiveness.