Fat (Ft) and Dachsous (Ds) are large cadherins that bind each other and have conserved roles in regulating planar cell polarity (PCP). We quantitatively analyzed Ft-Ds pathway mutant clones for their effects on ommatidial polarity in the Drosophila eye. Our findings suggest that the Ft-Ds pathway regulates PCP propagation independently of asymmetric cellular accumulation of Ft or Ds. We find that the Ft effector Atrophin has a position-specific role in regulating polarity in the eye, and that asymmetric accumulation of the atypical myosin Dachs is not essential for production and propagation of a long-range PCP signal. Our observations suggest that Ft and Ds interact to modulate a secondary signal that regulates long-range polarity, that signaling by the Ds intracellular domain is dependent on Ft, and that ommatidial fate specification is genetically separable from long-range signaling.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3869-3881
Number of pages13
JournalDevelopment (Cambridge)
Issue number18
StatePublished - Sep 15 2013


  • Atrophin
  • Dachsous
  • Drosophila
  • Fat
  • PCP
  • Polarity


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