Polarized notum activation at wounds inhibits Wnt function to promote planarian head regeneration

Christian P. Petersen, Peter W. Reddien

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

135 Scopus citations

Abstract

Regeneration requires initiation of programs tailored to the identity of missing parts. Head-versus-tail regeneration in planarians presents a paradigm for study of this phenomenon. After injury, Wnt signaling promotes tail regeneration. We report that wounding elicits expression of the Wnt inhibitor notum preferentially at anterior-facing wounds. This expression asymmetry occurs at essentially any wound, even if the anterior pole is intact. Inhibition of notum with RNA interference (RNAi) causes regeneration of an anterior-facing tail instead of a head, and double-RNAi experiments indicate that notum inhibits Wnt signaling to promote head regeneration. notum expression is itself controlled by Wnt signaling, suggesting that regulation of feedback inhibition controls the binary head-tail regeneration outcome. We conclude that local detection of wound orientation with respect to tissue axes results in distinct signaling environments that initiate appropriate regeneration responses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)852-855
Number of pages4
JournalScience
Volume332
Issue number6031
DOIs
StatePublished - May 13 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

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