Positive feedback between Cdc42 activity and H+ efflux by the Na-H exchanger NHE1 for polarity of migrating cells
Published Web Locationhttps://doi.org/10.1083/jcb.200704169
A fundamental feature of cell polarity in response to spatial cues is asymmetric amplification of molecules generated by positive feedback signaling. We report a positive feedback loop between the guanosine triphosphatase Cdc42, a central determinant in eukaryotic cell polarity, and H(+) efflux by Na-H(+) exchanger 1 (NHE1), which is necessary at the front of migrating cells for polarity and directional motility. In response to migratory cues, Cdc42 is not activated in fibroblasts expressing a mutant NHE1 that lacks H(+) efflux, and wild-type NHE1 is not activated in fibroblasts expressing mutationally inactive Cdc42-N17. H(+) efflux by NHE1 is not necessary for release of Cdc42-guanosine diphosphate (GDP) from Rho GDP dissociation inhibitor or for the membrane recruitment of Cdc42 but is required for GTP binding by Cdc42 catalyzed by a guanine nucleotide exchange factor (GEF). Data indicate that GEF binding to phosphotidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate is pH dependent, suggesting a mechanism for how H(+) efflux by NHE1 promotes Cdc42 activity to generate a positive feedback signal necessary for polarity in migrating cells.