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Notch and EGFR regulate apoptosis in progenitor cells to ensure gut homeostasis in Drosophila

AuthorsReiff, Tobias; Antonello, Zeus A.; Ballesta-Illan, Esther; Mira, Laura; Sala, Salvador; Navarro, Maria; Martínez, Luis M. ; Domínguez, María
Intestinal enteroblast
Issue Date2019
PublisherEMBO Press
CitationEMBO Journal 38(21): e101346 (2019)
AbstractThe regenerative activity of adult stem cells carries a risk of cancer, particularly in highly renewable tissues. Members of the family of inhibitor of apoptosis proteins (IAP s) inhibit caspases and cell death, and are often deregulated in adult cancers; however, their roles in normal adult tissue homeostasis are unclear. Here, we show that regulation of the number of enterocyte‐committed progenitor (enteroblast) cells in the adult Drosophila involves a caspase‐mediated physiological apoptosis, which adaptively eliminates excess enteroblast cells produced by intestinal stem cells (ISC s) and, when blocked, can also lead to tumorigenesis. Importantly, we found that Diap1 is expressed by enteroblast cells and that loss and gain of Diap1 led to changes in enteroblast numbers. We also found that antagonistic interplay between Notch and EGFR signalling governs enteroblast life/death decisions via the Klumpfuss/WT 1 and Lozenge/RUNX transcription regulators, which also regulate enteroblast differentiation and cell fate plasticity. These data provide new insights into how caspases drive adult tissue renewal and protect against the formation of tumours.
Publisher version (URL)https://doi.org/10.15252/embj.2018101346
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