For left-right symmetry breaking in the mouse embryo, the basal body must become positioned at the posterior side of node cells, but the precise mechanism for this has remained unknown. Here, we examined the role of microtubules (MTs) and actomyosin in this basal body positioning. Exposure of mouse embryos to agents that stabilize or destabilize MTs or F-actin impaired such positioning. Active myosin II was detected at the anterior side of node cells before the posterior shift of the basal body, and this asymmetric activation was lost in Prickle and dachsous mutant embryos. The organization of basal-body associated MTs (baMTs) was asymmetric between the anterior and posterior sides of node cells, with anterior baMTs extending horizontally and posterior baMTs extending vertically. This asymmetry became evident after polarization of the PCP core protein Vangl1 and before the posterior positioning of the basal body, and it also required the PCP core proteins Prickle and dachsous. Our results suggest that the asymmetry in baMT organization may play a role in correct positioning of the basal body for left-right symmetry breaking.

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