Over the past decade an intriguing connection between asymmetric cell division, stem cells and tumorigenesis has emerged. Neuroblasts, which are the neural stem cells of the Drosophila central nervous system, divide asymmetrically and constitute an excellent paradigm for investigating this connection further. Here we show that the simultaneous loss of the asymmetric cell division regulators Canoe (afadin in mammals) and Scribble in neuroblast clones leads to tumor-like overgrowth through both a severe disruption of the asymmetric cell division process and canoe loss-mediated Ras-PI3K-Akt activation. Moreover, canoe loss also interacts synergistically with scribble loss to promote overgrowth in epithelial tissues, here just by activating the Ras-Raf-MAPK pathway. discs large 1 and lethal (2) giant larvae, which are functionally related to scribble, contribute to repress the Ras-MAPK signaling cascade in epithelia. Hence, our work uncovers novel cooperative interactions between all these well-conserved tumor suppressors that ensure tight regulation of the Ras signaling pathway.
Rives-Quinto, N., Franco, M., de Torres-Jurado, A., & Carmena, A. (2017). Synergism between canoe and scribble mutations causes tumor-like overgrowth via Ras activation in neural stem cells and epithelia . Development, 144(14), 2570–2583. https://doi.org/10.1242/dev.148171