KIF18B is a cell type-specific regulator of spindle orientation in the epidermis.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Proper spindle orientation is required for asymmetric cell division and the establishment of complex tissue architecture. In the developing epidermis, spindle orientation requires a conserved cortical protein complex of LGN/NuMA/dynein-dynactin. However, how microtubule dynamics are regulated to interact with this machinery and properly position the mitotic spindle is not fully understood. Furthermore, our understanding of the processes that link spindle orientation during asymmetric cell division to cell fate specification in distinct tissue contexts remains incomplete. We report a role for the microtubule catastrophe factor KIF18B in regulating microtubule dynamics to promote spindle orientation in keratinocytes. During mitosis, KIF18B accumulates at the cell cortex, colocalizing with the conserved spindle orientation machinery. In vivo we find that KIF18B is required for oriented cell divisions within the hair placode, the first stage of hair follicle morphogenesis, but is not essential in the interfollicular epidermis. Disrupting spindle orientation in the placode, using mutations in either KIF18B or NuMA, results in aberrant cell fate marker expression of hair follicle progenitor cells. These data functionally link spindle orientation to cell fate decisions during hair follicle morphogenesis. Taken together, our data demonstrate a role for regulated microtubule dynamics in spindle orientation in epidermal cells. This work also highlights the importance of spindle orientation during asymmetric cell division to dictate cell fate specification.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Moreci, RS; Lechler, T

Published Date

  • November 1, 2021

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 32 / 21

Start / End Page

  • ar29 -

PubMed ID

  • 34432485

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC8693959

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1939-4586

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1091/mbc.E21-06-0291


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States