Muscle migration and adhesion to tendons

To enable proper movement of larval and adult flies, muscles must connect to tendon cells, which counteract muscle contraction. How muscle and tendons associate together to form the intricate pattern of the muscles and the ability of the organism to perform complex movements, is yet to be elucidated. Our studies using Drosophila embryo as our favorite model organism revealed a specialized cross talk between muscles and their corresponding tendon cells. In this process, an excess of tendon cells are produced, but only the cellular subset that form connections with muscles further differentiate (Reviewed in Volk, 1999, Schweitzer et al., 2010). In addition a set of gene products involved in muscle guidance and adhesion were identified Wayburn&Volk 2009; Gilsohn&Volk2010; Nir et al., 2012; Harpaz et al., 2013). Currently the role of Slit and Robo signaling pathway in directing muscles to their specific attachment sites is being analyzed using live cell imaging as well as genetics analyzes (Ordan et al., 2015).