Christian Dahmann

Compartment boundaries in Drosophila development

Drosophila expressing GFP under control of the engrailed enhancer in all cells of the posterior compartments. Note the straight border between GFP expressing and non-expressing cells. This straight border coincides with the anteroposterior compartment boundary.

We are interested in the mechanisms used by cells to arrange themselves into complex three-dimensional tissues. The precise spatial assembly of cells depends on the ability of cells to recognize, choose, and differentially adhere to neighboring cells. We are studying these processes in the wing imaginal disc of Drosophila. Imaginal discs are excellent systems to address developmental and cell biological questions. They are single cell-layered epithelial sheets amenable to molecular and cell biological approaches developing in the genetically tractable fly. Cells of the wing imaginal disc are arranged according to their lineage into two adjacent, but non-intermingling sets of cells termed compartments. Boundaries between compartments play vital roles for the partitioning and patterning not only of imaginal discs but also for vertebrate tissues. We use genetics and molecular approaches to identify molecules required for the formation of boundaries and to investigate how these molecules control and implement the sorting out of cells from adjacent compartments. In addition, we use imaging to observe the segregation of cells in real-time to gain insights into the underlying mechanisms.

Selected Publications

Dahmann, Christian; Oates, Andrew C.; Brand, Michael
Boundary formation and maintenance in tissue development.
Nat Rev Genet, 12, no. 1, pp. 43-55, (2011)
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Umetsu, Daiki; Dahmann, Christian
Compartment boundaries: Sorting cells with tension.
Fly, 4, no. 3, pp. 241-245, (2010)
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Viktorinová, Ivana; König, Tina; Schlichting, Karin; Dahmann, Christian
The cadherin Fat2 is required for planar cell polarity in the Drosophila ovary.
Development, 136, no. 24, pp. 4123-4132, (2009)
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Landsberg, Katharina; Farhadifar, Reza; Ranft, Jonas; Umetsu, Daiki; Widmann, Thomas; Bittig, Thomas; Said, Amani; Jülicher, Frank; Dahmann, Christian
Increased cell bond tension governs cell sorting at the Drosophila anteroposterior compartment boundary.
Curr Biol, 19, no. 22, pp. 1950-1955, (2009)
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Widmann, Thomas; Dahmann, Christian
Dpp signaling promotes the cuboidal-to-columnar shape transition of Drosophila wing disc epithelia by regulating Rho1.
J Cell Sci, 122, no. Pt 9, pp. 1362-1373, (2009)
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Shen, Jie; Dahmann, Christian
The role of Dpp signaling in maintaining the Drosophila anteroposterior compartment boundary.
Dev Biol, 279, no. 1, pp. 31-43, (2005)
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Shen, Jie; Dahmann, Christian
Extrusion of cells with inappropriate Dpp signaling from Drosophila wing disc epithelia.
Science, 307, no. 5716, pp. 1789-1790, (2005)
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Schlichting, Karin; Demontis, Fabio; Dahmann, Christian
Cadherin Cad99C is regulated by Hedgehog signaling in Drosophila.
Dev Biol, 279, no. 1, pp. 142-154, (2005)
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