Our model system is the Drosophila metamorphosis, during which the fly changes from larval to adult shape within a few days. We film the fly back (the dorsal thorax) and its wing over several orders of magnitude in space and time. We characterize quantitatively, within a unified description, each cell process: cell divisions, rearrangements, cell size and shape changes, and apoptoses.
We obtain comprehensive statistical maps of cell dynamics. We relate them to tissue scale dynamics, namely tissue growth and morphogenesis. While globally cell shape changes, rearrangements and divisions all significantly participate in tissue morphogenesis, locally, their relative participations display major variations in space and time. In addition, measuring forces and mechanical stresses in situ in the developing tissues evidences unexpected interplays between patterns of tissue elongation, cell division and stress.
B. Guirao, S.U. Rigaud, F. Bosveld, et al.
Unified quantitative characterization of epithelial tissue development