Regulation of fission yeast cell polarity by stress signalling pathways


  • Prof Kenneth Sawin

    University of Edinburgh

Project summary

Cell polarity is important for the spatial organisation and function of nearly all eukaryotic cells, including migrating cells, neurons, epithelial cells and stem cells. A key player in cell polarity is the Rho family GTPase Cdc42, which interacts with multiple effector proteins to help execute cell polarity programmes in response to internal and external cues. We used the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe to discover that the cell polarity module associated with Cdc42 is regulated by stress signalling pathways.

We aim to understand how activating stress signalling regulates the Cdc42 polarity module at a detailed molecular level. We will take a multidisciplinary approach, involving proteomics, genetics, biochemistry and live cell imaging. We will also investigate how stress regulation of cell polarity is integrated with other physiological pathways.

By determining the detailed mechanisms of stress regulation of cell polarity in a relatively simple model eukaryote, we will provide insights into how similar regulation may occur in more complex organisms.