Temporal relationship between primary and motile ciliogenesis in airway epithelial cells

Raksha Jain, Jiehong Pan, James A. Driscoll, Jeffrey W. Wisner, Tao Huang, Sean P. Gunsten, Yingjian You, Steven L. Brody

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

77 Scopus citations

Abstract

Cilia are traditionally classified as motile or primary. Motile cilia are restricted to specific populations of well-differentiated epithelial cells, including those in the airway, brain ventricles, and oviducts. Primary cilia are nonmotile, solitary structures that are present in many cell types, and often have sensory functions such as in the retina and renal tubules. Primary cilia were also implicated in the regulation of fundamental processes in development. Rare depictions of primary cilia in embryonic airways led us to hypothesize that primary cilia in airway cells are temporally related to motile ciliogenesis. We identified primary cilia in undifferentiated, cultured airway epithelial cells from mice and humans and in developing lungs. The solitary cilia in the airways express proteins considered unique to primary cilia, including polycystin-1 and polycystin-2. A temporal analysis of airway epithelial cell differentiation showed that cells with primary cilia acquire markers of motile ciliogenesis, suggesting that motile ciliated cells originate from primary ciliated cells. Whereas motile ciliogenesis requires Foxj1, primary ciliogenesis does not, and the expression of Foxj1 was associated with a loss of primary cilia, just before the appearance of motile cilia. Primary cilia were not found in well-differentiated airway epithelial cells. However, after injury, they appear in the luminal layer of epithelium and in basal cells. The transient nature of primary cilia, together with the temporal and spatial patterns of expression in the development and repair of airway epithelium, suggests a critical role of primary cilia in determining outcomes during airway epithelial cell differentiation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)731-739
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican Journal of Respiratory Cell and Molecular Biology
Volume43
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2010

Keywords

  • Cilia
  • Differentiation
  • Foxj1
  • PKD1
  • PKD2

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