Development

Separate and Unequal

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Science  15 Aug 2003:
Vol. 301, Issue 5635, pp. 897
DOI: 10.1126/science.301.5635.897a

When a cell divides, it often does not produce two equivalent daughter cells. For instance, in the Drosophila sensory bristle lineage, division of the sensory organ precursor cell (pI) generates two cells with different cell fates. Le Borgne and Schweisguth report that the daughter cells differ in Notch signaling: Notch is activated in the anterior daughter cell (pIIa) but is inhibited in the posterior daughter cell (pIIb). This difference in Notch activation is mediated by the unequal distribution of Neuralized, a factor that is required for the endocytosis of the Notch ligand Delta in sensory cells. Neuralized function is conserved from flies to frogs; therefore, the involvement of Neuralized during asymmetric cell division may also be found in other animals, including vertebrates. — BAP

Dev. Cell 5, 139 (2003).

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