Modeling bistable cell-fate choices in the Drosophila eye: qualitative and quantitative perspectives (Development July 15, 2010)

Development. 2010 Jul;137(14):2265-78.
Modeling bistable cell-fate choices in the Drosophila eye: qualitative and quantitative perspectives.

Graham TG, Tabei SM, Dinner AR, Rebay I.

Ben May Department for Cancer Research, University of Chicago, 929 East 57th Street, Chicago, IL 60637, USA.
Abstract

A major goal of developmental biology is to understand the molecular mechanisms whereby genetic signaling networks establish and maintain distinct cell types within multicellular organisms. Here, we review cell-fate decisions in the developing eye of Drosophila melanogaster and the experimental results that have revealed the topology of the underlying signaling circuitries. We then propose that switch-like network motifs based on positive feedback play a central role in cell-fate choice, and discuss how mathematical modeling can be used to understand and predict the bistable or multistable behavior of such networks.

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