Document Type



Master of Science (MS)



First Advisor's Name

Lou W. Kim

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Lidia Kos

Third Advisor's Name

Alejandro Barbieri


Dictyostelium discoideum, SodC, endocytosis, exocytosis, RasG

Date of Defense



Dictyostelium discoideum is a simple model organism that can be used to study endocytic pathways such as phagocytosis and macropinocytosis because of its homology to cells of the mammalian innate immune system, namely macrophages and neutrophils. Consequently, Dictyostelium can also be used to study the process of exocytosis. In our laboratory, we generated Dictyostelium cells lacking superoxide dismutase SodC. Our data suggest that cells that lack SodC are defective in macropinocytosis and exocytosis when compared to wild type cells.

In this study I describe a regulatory mechanism of macropinocytosis by SodC via regulation of RasG, which in turn controls PI3K activation and thus macropinocytosis. Our results show that proper metabolism of superoxide is critical for efficient particle uptake, for the proper trafficking of internalized particles, and a timely exocytosis of fluid uptake in Dictyostelium cells.





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