The septate junction protein Mesh is required for epithelial morphogenesis, ion transport, and paracellular permeability in the Drosophila Malpighian tubule

Sima Jonusaite, Klaus W. Beyenbach, Heiko Meyer, Achim Paululat, Yasushi Izumi, Mikio Furuse, Aylin R. Rodan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Septate junctions (SJs) are occluding cell-cell junctions that have roles in paracellular permeability and barrier function in the epithelia of invertebrates. Arthropods have two types of SJs, pleated SJs and smooth SJs (sSJs). In Drosophila melanogaster, sSJs are found in the midgut and Malpighian tubules, but the functions of sSJs and their protein components in the tubule epithelium are unknown. Here we examined the role of the previously identified integral sSJ component, Mesh, in the Malpighian tubule. We genetically manipulated mesh specifically in the principal cells of the tubule at different life stages. Tubules of flies with developmental mesh knockdown revealed defects in epithelial architecture, sSJ molecular and structural organization, and lack of urine production in basal and kinin-stimulated conditions, resulting in edema and early adult lethality. Knockdown of mesh during adulthood did not disrupt tubule epithelial and sSJ integrity but decreased the transepithelial potential, diminished transepithelial fluid and ion transport, and decreased paracellular permeability to 4-kDa dextran. Drosophila kinin decreased transepithelial potential and increased chloride permeability, and it stimulated fluid secretion in both control and adult mesh knockdown tubules but had no effect on 4-kDa dextran flux. Together, these data indicate roles for Mesh in the developmental maturation of the Drosophila Malpighian tubule and in ion and macromolecular transport in the adult tubule.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)C675-C694
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Cell Physiology
Volume318
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 2020
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Drosokinin
  • Drosophila
  • Malpighian tubule
  • Mesh
  • Paracellular permeability
  • Smooth septate junctions

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Cell Biology

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