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Sample records for actin based filaments

  1. Boolean gates on actin filaments

    Siccardi, Stefano; Tuszynski, Jack A.; Adamatzky, Andrew

    2016-01-01

    Actin is a globular protein which forms long polar filaments in the eukaryotic cytoskeleton. Actin networks play a key role in cell mechanics and cell motility. They have also been implicated in information transmission and processing, memory and learning in neuronal cells. The actin filaments have been shown to support propagation of voltage pulses. Here we apply a coupled nonlinear transmission line model of actin filaments to study interactions between voltage pulses. To represent digital information we assign a logical TRUTH value to the presence of a voltage pulse in a given location of the actin filament, and FALSE to the pulse's absence, so that information flows along the filament with pulse transmission. When two pulses, representing Boolean values of input variables, interact, then they can facilitate or inhibit further propagation of each other. We explore this phenomenon to construct Boolean logical gates and a one-bit half-adder with interacting voltage pulses. We discuss implications of these findings on cellular process and technological applications.

  2. Tropomyosin - master regulator of actin filament function in the cytoskeleton.

    Gunning, Peter W; Hardeman, Edna C; Lappalainen, Pekka; Mulvihill, Daniel P

    2015-08-15

    Tropomyosin (Tpm) isoforms are the master regulators of the functions of individual actin filaments in fungi and metazoans. Tpms are coiled-coil parallel dimers that form a head-to-tail polymer along the length of actin filaments. Yeast only has two Tpm isoforms, whereas mammals have over 40. Each cytoskeletal actin filament contains a homopolymer of Tpm homodimers, resulting in a filament of uniform Tpm composition along its length. Evidence for this 'master regulator' role is based on four core sets of observation. First, spatially and functionally distinct actin filaments contain different Tpm isoforms, and recent data suggest that members of the formin family of actin filament nucleators can specify which Tpm isoform is added to the growing actin filament. Second, Tpms regulate whole-organism physiology in terms of morphogenesis, cell proliferation, vesicle trafficking, biomechanics, glucose metabolism and organ size in an isoform-specific manner. Third, Tpms achieve these functional outputs by regulating the interaction of actin filaments with myosin motors and actin-binding proteins in an isoform-specific manner. Last, the assembly of complex structures, such as stress fibers and podosomes involves the collaboration of multiple types of actin filament specified by their Tpm composition. This allows the cell to specify actin filament function in time and space by simply specifying their Tpm isoform composition. PMID:26240174

  3. A Robust Actin Filaments Image Analysis Framework.

    Alioscha-Perez, Mitchel; Benadiba, Carine; Goossens, Katty; Kasas, Sandor; Dietler, Giovanni; Willaert, Ronnie; Sahli, Hichem

    2016-08-01

    The cytoskeleton is a highly dynamical protein network that plays a central role in numerous cellular physiological processes, and is traditionally divided into three components according to its chemical composition, i.e. actin, tubulin and intermediate filament cytoskeletons. Understanding the cytoskeleton dynamics is of prime importance to unveil mechanisms involved in cell adaptation to any stress type. Fluorescence imaging of cytoskeleton structures allows analyzing the impact of mechanical stimulation in the cytoskeleton, but it also imposes additional challenges in the image processing stage, such as the presence of imaging-related artifacts and heavy blurring introduced by (high-throughput) automated scans. However, although there exists a considerable number of image-based analytical tools to address the image processing and analysis, most of them are unfit to cope with the aforementioned challenges. Filamentous structures in images can be considered as a piecewise composition of quasi-straight segments (at least in some finer or coarser scale). Based on this observation, we propose a three-steps actin filaments extraction methodology: (i) first the input image is decomposed into a 'cartoon' part corresponding to the filament structures in the image, and a noise/texture part, (ii) on the 'cartoon' image, we apply a multi-scale line detector coupled with a (iii) quasi-straight filaments merging algorithm for fiber extraction. The proposed robust actin filaments image analysis framework allows extracting individual filaments in the presence of noise, artifacts and heavy blurring. Moreover, it provides numerous parameters such as filaments orientation, position and length, useful for further analysis. Cell image decomposition is relatively under-exploited in biological images processing, and our study shows the benefits it provides when addressing such tasks. Experimental validation was conducted using publicly available datasets, and in osteoblasts grown in

  4. A Robust Actin Filaments Image Analysis Framework

    Alioscha-Perez, Mitchel; Benadiba, Carine; Goossens, Katty; Kasas, Sandor; Dietler, Giovanni; Willaert, Ronnie; Sahli, Hichem

    2016-01-01

    The cytoskeleton is a highly dynamical protein network that plays a central role in numerous cellular physiological processes, and is traditionally divided into three components according to its chemical composition, i.e. actin, tubulin and intermediate filament cytoskeletons. Understanding the cytoskeleton dynamics is of prime importance to unveil mechanisms involved in cell adaptation to any stress type. Fluorescence imaging of cytoskeleton structures allows analyzing the impact of mechanical stimulation in the cytoskeleton, but it also imposes additional challenges in the image processing stage, such as the presence of imaging-related artifacts and heavy blurring introduced by (high-throughput) automated scans. However, although there exists a considerable number of image-based analytical tools to address the image processing and analysis, most of them are unfit to cope with the aforementioned challenges. Filamentous structures in images can be considered as a piecewise composition of quasi-straight segments (at least in some finer or coarser scale). Based on this observation, we propose a three-steps actin filaments extraction methodology: (i) first the input image is decomposed into a ‘cartoon’ part corresponding to the filament structures in the image, and a noise/texture part, (ii) on the ‘cartoon’ image, we apply a multi-scale line detector coupled with a (iii) quasi-straight filaments merging algorithm for fiber extraction. The proposed robust actin filaments image analysis framework allows extracting individual filaments in the presence of noise, artifacts and heavy blurring. Moreover, it provides numerous parameters such as filaments orientation, position and length, useful for further analysis. Cell image decomposition is relatively under-exploited in biological images processing, and our study shows the benefits it provides when addressing such tasks. Experimental validation was conducted using publicly available datasets, and in osteoblasts

  5. Stimulation of Actin Polymerization by Filament Severing

    Carlsson, A E

    2005-01-01

    The extent and dynamics of actin polymerization in solution are calculated as functions of the filament severing rate, using a simple model of in vitro polymerization. The model is solved by both analytic theory and stochastic-growth simulation. The results show that severing essentially always enhances actin polymerization by freeing up barbed ends, if barbed-end cappers are present. Severing has much weaker effects if only pointed-end cappers are present. In the early stages of polymerizati...

  6. Membrane waves driven by forces from actin filaments

    Membrane waves propagating along the cell circumference in a top down view have been observed with several eukaryotic cells (Döbereiner et al 2006 Phys. Rev. Lett. 97 10; Machacek and Danuser 2006 Biophys. J. 90 1439–52). We present a mathematical model reproducing these traveling membrane undulations during lamellipodial motility of cells on flat substrates. The model describes the interplay of pushing forces exerted by actin polymerization on the membrane, pulling forces of attached actin filaments on the cell edge, contractile forces powered by molecular motors across the actin gel and resisting membrane tension. The actin filament network in the bulk of lamellipodia obeys gel flow equations. We investigated in particular the dependence of wave properties on gel parameters and found that inhibition of myosin motors abolishes waves in some cells but not in others in agreement with experimental observations. The model provides a unifying mechanism explaining the dynamics of actin-based motility in a variety of systems. (paper)

  7. Mechanical properties of branched actin filaments

    Razbin, Mohammadhosein; Benetatos, Panayotis; Zippelius, Annette

    2015-01-01

    Cells moving on a two dimensional substrate generate motion by polymerizing actin filament networks inside a flat membrane protrusion. New filaments are generated by branching off existing ones, giving rise to branched network structures. We investigate the force-extension relation of branched filaments, grafted on an elastic structure at one end and pushing with the free ends against the leading edge cell membrane. Single filaments are modeled as worm-like chains, whose thermal bending fluctuations are restricted by the leading edge cell membrane, resulting in an effective force. Branching can increase the stiffness considerably; however the effect depends on branch point position and filament orientation, being most pronounced for intermediate tilt angles and intermediate branch point positions. We describe filament networks without cross-linkers to focus on the effect of branching. We use randomly positioned branch points, as generated in the process of treadmilling, and orientation distributions as measur...

  8. Mechanism of Actin Filament Bundling by Fascin

    Jansen, Silvia; Collins, Agnieszka; Yang, Changsong; Rebowski, Grzegorz; Svitkina, Tatyana; Dominguez, Roberto (UPENN); (UPENN-MED)

    2013-03-07

    Fascin is the main actin filament bundling protein in filopodia. Because of the important role filopodia play in cell migration, fascin is emerging as a major target for cancer drug discovery. However, an understanding of the mechanism of bundle formation by fascin is critically lacking. Fascin consists of four {beta}-trefoil domains. Here, we show that fascin contains two major actin-binding sites, coinciding with regions of high sequence conservation in {beta}-trefoil domains 1 and 3. The site in {beta}-trefoil-1 is located near the binding site of the fascin inhibitor macroketone and comprises residue Ser-39, whose phosphorylation by protein kinase C down-regulates actin bundling and formation of filopodia. The site in {beta}-trefoil-3 is related by pseudo-2-fold symmetry to that in {beta}-trefoil-1. The two sites are {approx}5 nm apart, resulting in a distance between actin filaments in the bundle of {approx}8.1 nm. Residue mutations in both sites disrupt bundle formation in vitro as assessed by co-sedimentation with actin and electron microscopy and severely impair formation of filopodia in cells as determined by rescue experiments in fascin-depleted cells. Mutations of other areas of the fascin surface also affect actin bundling and formation of filopodia albeit to a lesser extent, suggesting that, in addition to the two major actin-binding sites, fascin makes secondary contacts with other filaments in the bundle. In a high resolution crystal structure of fascin, molecules of glycerol and polyethylene glycol are bound in pockets located within the two major actin-binding sites. These molecules could guide the rational design of new anticancer fascin inhibitors.

  9. Transportation of Nanoscale Cargoes by Myosin Propelled Actin Filaments

    Persson, Malin; Gullberg, Maria; Tolf, Conny; Lindberg, A. Michael; Mansson, Alf; Kocer, Armagan

    2013-01-01

    Myosin II propelled actin filaments move ten times faster than kinesin driven microtubules and are thus attractive candidates as cargo-transporting shuttles in motor driven lab-on-a-chip devices. In addition, actomyosin-based transportation of nanoparticles is useful in various fundamental studies.

  10. Mechanosensitive kinetic preference of actin-binding protein to actin filament

    Inoue, Yasuhiro; Adachi, Taiji

    2016-04-01

    The kinetic preference of actin-binding proteins to actin filaments is altered by external forces on the filament. Such an altered kinetic preference is largely responsible for remodeling the actin cytoskeletal structure in response to intracellular forces. During remodeling, actin-binding proteins and actin filaments interact under isothermal conditions, because the cells are homeostatic. In such a temperature homeostatic state, we can rigorously and thermodynamically link the chemical potential of actin-binding proteins to stresses on the actin filaments. From this relationship, we can construct a physical model that explains the force-dependent kinetic preference of actin-binding proteins to actin filaments. To confirm the model, we have analyzed the mechanosensitive alternation of the kinetic preference of Arp2/3 and cofilin to actin filaments. We show that this model captures the qualitative responses of these actin-binding proteins to the forces, as observed experimentally. Moreover, our theoretical results demonstrate that, depending on the structural parameters of the binding region, actin-binding proteins can show different kinetic responses even to the same mechanical signal tension, in which the double-helix nature of the actin filament also plays a critical role in a stretch-twist coupling of the filament.

  11. Structural Basis of Actin Filament Nucleation by Tandem W Domains

    Xiaorui Chen

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Spontaneous nucleation of actin is very inefficient in cells. To overcome this barrier, cells have evolved a set of actin filament nucleators to promote rapid nucleation and polymerization in response to specific stimuli. However, the molecular mechanism of actin nucleation remains poorly understood. This is hindered largely by the fact that actin nucleus, once formed, rapidly polymerizes into filament, thus making it impossible to capture stable multisubunit actin nucleus. Here, we report an effective double-mutant strategy to stabilize actin nucleus by preventing further polymerization. Employing this strategy, we solved the crystal structure of AMPPNP-actin in complex with the first two tandem W domains of Cordon-bleu (Cobl, a potent actin filament nucleator. Further sequence comparison and functional studies suggest that the nucleation mechanism of Cobl is probably shared by the p53 cofactor JMY, but not Spire. Moreover, the double-mutant strategy opens the way for atomic mechanistic study of actin nucleation and polymerization.

  12. Transportation of nanoscale cargoes by myosin propelled actin filaments.

    Malin Persson

    Full Text Available Myosin II propelled actin filaments move ten times faster than kinesin driven microtubules and are thus attractive candidates as cargo-transporting shuttles in motor driven lab-on-a-chip devices. In addition, actomyosin-based transportation of nanoparticles is useful in various fundamental studies. However, it is poorly understood how actomyosin function is affected by different number of nanoscale cargoes, by cargo size, and by the mode of cargo-attachment to the actin filament. This is studied here using biotin/fluorophores, streptavidin, streptavidin-coated quantum dots, and liposomes as model cargoes attached to monomers along the actin filaments ("side-attached" or to the trailing filament end via the plus end capping protein CapZ. Long-distance transportation (>100 µm could be seen for all cargoes independently of attachment mode but the fraction of motile filaments decreased with increasing number of side-attached cargoes, a reduction that occurred within a range of 10-50 streptavidin molecules, 1-10 quantum dots or with just 1 liposome. However, as observed by monitoring these motile filaments with the attached cargo, the velocity was little affected. This also applied for end-attached cargoes where the attachment was mediated by CapZ. The results with side-attached cargoes argue against certain models for chemomechanical energy transduction in actomyosin and give important insights of relevance for effective exploitation of actomyosin-based cargo-transportation in molecular diagnostics and other nanotechnological applications. The attachment of quantum dots via CapZ, without appreciable modulation of actomyosin function, is useful in fundamental studies as exemplified here by tracking with nanometer accuracy.

  13. Characterization of engineered actin binding proteins that control filament assembly and structure.

    Crista M Brawley

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Eukaryotic cells strictly regulate the structure and assembly of their actin filament networks in response to various stimuli. The actin binding proteins that control filament assembly are therefore attractive targets for those who wish to reorganize actin filaments and reengineer the cytoskeleton. Unfortunately, the naturally occurring actin binding proteins include only a limited set of pointed-end cappers, or proteins that will block polymerization from the slow-growing end of actin filaments. Of the few that are known, most are part of large multimeric complexes that are challenging to manipulate. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We describe here the use of phage display mutagenesis to generate of a new class of binding protein that can be targeted to the pointed-end of actin. These proteins, called synthetic antigen binders (sABs, are based on an antibody-like scaffold where sequence diversity is introduced into the binding loops using a novel "reduced genetic code" phage display library. We describe effective strategies to select and screen for sABs that ensure the generated sABs bind to the pointed-end surface of actin exclusively. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: From our set of pointed-end binders, we identify three sABs with particularly useful properties to systematically probe actin dynamics: one protein that caps the pointed end, a second that crosslinks actin filaments, and a third that severs actin filaments and promotes disassembly.

  14. Control of actin-based motility through localized actin binding

    A wide variety of cell biological and biomimetic systems use actin polymerization to drive motility. It has been suggested that an object such as a bacterium can propel itself by self-assembling a high concentration of actin behind it, if it is repelled by actin. However, it is also known that it is essential for the moving object to bind actin. Therefore, a key question is how the actin tail can propel an object when it both binds and repels the object. We present a physically consistent Brownian dynamics model for actin-based motility that includes the minimal components of the dendritic nucleation model and allows for both attractive and repulsive interactions between actin and a moveable disc. We find that the concentration gradient of filamentous actin generated by polymerization is sufficient to propel the object, even with moderately strong binding interactions. Additionally, actin binding can act as a biophysical cap, and may directly control motility through modulation of network growth. Overall, this mechanism is robust in that it can drive motility against a load up to a stall pressure that depends on the Young’s modulus of the actin network and can explain several aspects of actin-based motility. (paper)

  15. Alpha-herpesvirus infection induces the formation of nuclear actin filaments.

    Feierbach, Becket; Piccinotti, Silvia; Bisher, Margaret; Denk, Winfried; Enquist, Lynn W

    2006-08-01

    Herpesviruses are large double-stranded DNA viruses that replicate in the nuclei of infected cells. Spatial control of viral replication and assembly in the host nucleus is achieved by the establishment of nuclear compartments that serve to concentrate viral and host factors. How these compartments are established and maintained remains poorly understood. Pseudorabies virus (PRV) is an alpha-herpesvirus often used to study herpesvirus invasion and spread in the nervous system. Here, we report that PRV and herpes simplex virus type 1 infection of neurons results in formation of actin filaments in the nucleus. Filamentous actin is not found in the nucleus of uninfected cells. Nuclear actin filaments appear physically associated with the viral capsids, as shown by serial block-face scanning electron micropscopy and confocal microscopy. Using a green fluorescent protein-tagged viral capsid protein (VP26), we show that nuclear actin filaments form prior to capsid assembly and are required for the efficient formation of viral capsid assembly sites. We find that actin polymerization dynamics (e.g., treadmilling) are not necessary for the formation of these sites. Green fluorescent protein-VP26 foci co-localize with the actin motor myosin V, suggesting that viral capsids travel along nuclear actin filaments using myosin-based directed transport. Viral transcription, but not viral DNA replication, is required for actin filament formation. The finding that infection, by either PRV or herpes simplex virus type 1, results in formation of nuclear actin filaments in neurons, and that PRV infection of an epithelial cell line results in a similar phenotype is evidence that F-actin plays a conserved role in herpesvirus assembly. Our results suggest a mechanism by which assembly domains are organized within infected cells and provide insight into how the viral infectious cycle and host actin cytoskeleton are integrated to promote the infection process. PMID:16933992

  16. The structural basis for the intrinsic disorder of the actin filament: the "lateral slipping" model.

    Bremer, A; Millonig, R C; Sütterlin, R; Engel, A; Pollard, T D; Aebi, U

    1991-11-01

    Three-dimensional (3-D) helical reconstructions computed from electron micrographs of negatively stained dispersed F-actin filaments invariably revealed two uninterrupted columns of mass forming the "backbone" of the double-helical filament. The contact between neighboring subunits along the thus defined two long-pitch helical strands was spatially conserved and of high mass density, while the intersubunit contact between them was of lower mass density and varied among reconstructions. In contrast, phalloidinstabilized F-actin filaments displayed higher and spatially more conserved mass density between the two long-pitch helical strands, suggesting that this bicyclic hepta-peptide toxin strengthens the intersubunit contact between the two strands. Consistent with this distinct intersubunit bonding pattern, the two long-pitch helical strands of unstabilized filaments were sometimes observed separated from each other over a distance of two to six subunits, suggesting that the intrastrand intersubunit contact is also physically stronger than the interstrand contact. The resolution of the filament reconstructions, extending to 2.5 nm axially and radially, enabled us to reproducibly "cut out" the F-actin subunit which measured 5.5 nm axially by 6.0 nm tangentially by 3.2 nm radially. The subunit is distinctly polar with a massive "base" pointing towards the "barbed" end of the filament, and a slender "tip" defining its "pointed" end (i.e., relative to the "arrowhead" pattern revealed after stoichiometric decoration of the filaments with myosin subfragment 1). Concavities running approximately parallel to the filament axis both on the inner and outer face of the subunit define a distinct cleft separating the subunit into two domains of similar size: an inner domain confined to radii less than or equal to 2.5-nm forms the uninterrupted backbone of the two long-pitch helical strands, and an outer domain placed at radii of 2-5-nm protrudes radially and thus predominantly

  17. Staining Fission Yeast Filamentous Actin with Fluorescent Phalloidin Conjugates.

    Hagan, Iain M

    2016-01-01

    The Schizosaccharomyces pombe filamentous (F)-actin cytoskeleton drives cell growth, morphogenesis, endocytosis, and cytokinesis. The protocol described here reveals the distribution of F-actin in fixed cells through the use of fluorescently conjugated phalloidin. Simultaneous staining of cell wall landmarks (with calcofluor) and chromatin (with 4',6-diamidino-2-phenylindole, or DAPI) makes this rapid staining procedure highly effective for staging cell cycle progression, monitoring morphogenetic abnormalities, and assessing the impact of environmental and genetic changes on the integrity of the F-actin cytoskeleton. PMID:27250943

  18. Novel actin-like filament structure from Clostridium tetani.

    Popp, David; Narita, Akihiro; Lee, Lin Jie; Ghoshdastider, Umesh; Xue, Bo; Srinivasan, Ramanujam; Balasubramanian, Mohan K; Tanaka, Toshitsugu; Robinson, Robert C

    2012-06-15

    Eukaryotic F-actin is constructed from two protofilaments that gently wind around each other to form a helical polymer. Several bacterial actin-like proteins (Alps) are also known to form F-actin-like helical arrangements from two protofilaments, yet with varied helical geometries. Here, we report a unique filament architecture of Alp12 from Clostridium tetani that is constructed from four protofilaments. Through fitting of an Alp12 monomer homology model into the electron microscopy data, the filament was determined to be constructed from two antiparallel strands, each composed of two parallel protofilaments. These four protofilaments form an open helical cylinder separated by a wide cleft. The molecular interactions within single protofilaments are similar to F-actin, yet interactions between protofilaments differ from those in F-actin. The filament structure and assembly and disassembly kinetics suggest Alp12 to be a dynamically unstable force-generating motor involved in segregating the pE88 plasmid, which encodes the lethal tetanus toxin, and thus a potential target for drug design. Alp12 can be repeatedly cycled between states of polymerization and dissociation, making it a novel candidate for incorporation into fuel-propelled nanobiopolymer machines. PMID:22514279

  19. Mesoscopic model of actin-based propulsion.

    Jie Zhu

    Full Text Available Two theoretical models dominate current understanding of actin-based propulsion: microscopic polymerization ratchet model predicts that growing and writhing actin filaments generate forces and movements, while macroscopic elastic propulsion model suggests that deformation and stress of growing actin gel are responsible for the propulsion. We examine both experimentally and computationally the 2D movement of ellipsoidal beads propelled by actin tails and show that neither of the two models can explain the observed bistability of the orientation of the beads. To explain the data, we develop a 2D hybrid mesoscopic model by reconciling these two models such that individual actin filaments undergoing nucleation, elongation, attachment, detachment and capping are embedded into the boundary of a node-spring viscoelastic network representing the macroscopic actin gel. Stochastic simulations of this 'in silico' actin network show that the combined effects of the macroscopic elastic deformation and microscopic ratchets can explain the observed bistable orientation of the actin-propelled ellipsoidal beads. To test the theory further, we analyze observed distribution of the curvatures of the trajectories and show that the hybrid model's predictions fit the data. Finally, we demonstrate that the model can explain both concave-up and concave-down force-velocity relations for growing actin networks depending on the characteristic time scale and network recoil. To summarize, we propose that both microscopic polymerization ratchets and macroscopic stresses of the deformable actin network are responsible for the force and movement generation.

  20. Addition of electrophilic lipids to actin alters filament structure

    Pathophysiological processes associated with oxidative stress lead to the generation of reactive lipid species. Among them, lipids bearing unsaturated aldehyde or ketone moieties can form covalent adducts with cysteine residues and modulate protein function. Through proteomic techniques we have identified actin as a target for the addition of biotinylated analogs of the cyclopentenone prostaglandins 15-deoxy-Δ12,14-PGJ2 (15d-PGJ2) and PGA1 in NIH-3T3 fibroblasts. This modification could take place in vitro and mapped to the protein C-terminal end. Other electrophilic lipids, like the isoprostane 8-iso-PGA1 and 4-hydroxy-2-nonenal, also bound to actin. The C-terminal region of actin is important for monomer-monomer interactions and polymerization. Electron microscopy showed that actin treated with 15d-PGJ2 or 4-hydroxy-2-nonenal formed filaments which were less abundant and displayed shorter length and altered structure. Streptavidin-gold staining allowed mapping of biotinylated 15d-PGJ2 at sites of filament disruption. These results shed light on the structural implications of actin modification by lipid electrophiles

  1. Prokaryotic DNA segregation by an actin-like filament

    Møller-Jensen, Jakob; Bugge Jensen, Rasmus; Löwe, Jan;

    2002-01-01

    The mechanisms responsible for prokaryotic DNA segregation are largely unknown. The partitioning locus (par) encoded by the Escherichia coli plasmid R1 actively segregates its replicon to daughter cells. We show here that the ParM ATPase encoded by par forms dynamic actin-like filaments with...... point for ParM polymerization. Hence, we provide evidence for a simple prokaryotic analogue of the eukaryotic mitotic spindle apparatus....

  2. To be or not to be assembled: progressing into nuclear actin filaments.

    Grosse, Robert; Vartiainen, Maria K

    2013-11-01

    The paradigm states that cytoplasmic actin operates as filaments and nuclear actin is mainly monomeric, acting as a scaffold in transcription complexes. However, why should a powerful function of actin, namely polymerization, not be used in the nucleus? Recent progress in the field forces us to rethink this issue, as many actin filament assembly proteins have been linked to nuclear functions and new experimental approaches have provided the first direct visualizations of polymerized nuclear actin. PMID:24088744

  3. Actin filaments growing against a barrier with fluctuating shape

    Sadhu, Raj Kumar; Chatterjee, Sakuntala

    2016-06-01

    We study force generation by a set of parallel actin filaments growing against a nonrigid obstacle, in the presence of an external load. The filaments polymerize by either moving the whole obstacle, with a large energy cost, or by causing local distortion in its shape which costs much less energy. The nonrigid obstacle also has local thermal fluctuations due to which its shape can change with time and we describe this using fluctuations in the height profile of a one-dimensional interface with Kardar-Parisi-Zhang dynamics. We find the shape fluctuations of the barrier strongly affect the force generation mechanism. The qualitative nature of the force-velocity curve is crucially determined by the relative time scale of filament and barrier dynamics. The height profile of the barrier also shows interesting variation with the external load. Our analytical calculations within mean-field theory show reasonable agreement with our simulation results.

  4. Actin filaments growing against a barrier with fluctuating shape

    Sadhu, Raj Kumar

    2016-01-01

    We study force generation by a set of parallel actin filaments growing against a non-rigid obstacle, in presence of an external load. The filaments polymerize by either moving the whole obstacle, with a large energy cost, or by causing local distortion in its shape which costs much less energy. The non-rigid obstacle also has local thermal fluctuations due to which its shape can change with time and we describe this using fluctuations in the height profile of a one dimensional interface with Kardar-Parisi-Zhang dynamics. We find the shape fluctuations of the barrier strongly affects the force generation mechanism. The qualitative nature of the force-velocity curve is crucially determined by the relative time-scale of filament and barrier dynamics. The height profile of the barrier also shows interesting variation with the external load. Our analytical calculation within mean-field theory shows reasonable agreement with our simulation results.

  5. A novel method to study the electrodynamic behavior of actin filaments. Evidence for cable-like properties of actin.

    Lin, E C; Cantiello, H. F.

    1993-01-01

    Actin, one of the most abundant intracellular proteins, forms long linear polyelectrolytic polymers in solution. A novel technique to handle single actin filaments in solution was developed that allows the study of ionic currents elicited along the surface of electrically stimulated actin filaments. Electrical currents were observed about the polymer's surface under both high (100 mM KCl) and low (1 mM KCl) ionic strength conditions. The data are consistent with a dynamic behavior of the coun...

  6. Shortening actin filaments cause force generation in actomyosin network to change from contractile to extensile

    Kumar, Nitin; Gardel, Margaret

    Motor proteins in conjunction with filamentous proteins convert biochemical energy into mechanical energy which serves a number of cellular processes including cell motility, force generation and intracellular cargo transport. In-vitro experiments suggest that the forces generated by kinesin motors on microtubule bundles are extensile in nature whereas myosin motors on actin filaments are contractile. It is not clear how qualitatively similar systems can show completely different behaviors in terms of the nature of force generation. In order to answer this question, we carry out in vitro experiments where we form quasi 2D filamentous actomyosin networks and vary the length of actin filaments by adding capping protein. We show that when filaments are much shorter than their typical persistence length (approximately 10 microns), the forces generated are extensile and we see active nematic defect propagation, as seen in the microtubule-kinesin system. Based on this observation, we claim that the rigidity of rods plays an important role in dictating the nature of force generation in such systems. In order to understand this transition, we selectively label individual filaments and find that longer filaments show considerable bending and buckling, making them difficult to slide and extend along their length.

  7. Mesoscopic model for filament orientation in growing actin networks: the role of obstacle geometry

    Weichsel, Julian; 10.1088/1367-2630/15/3/035006

    2013-01-01

    Propulsion by growing actin networks is a universal mechanism used in many different biological systems. Although the core molecular machinery for actin network growth is well preserved in most cases, the geometry of the propelled obstacle can vary considerably. In recent years, filament orientation distribution has emerged as an important observable characterizing the structure and dynamical state of the growing network. Here we derive several continuum equations for the orientation distribution of filaments growing behind stiff obstacles of various shapes and validate the predicted steady state orientation patterns by stochastic computer simulations based on discrete filaments. We use an ordinary differential equation approach to demonstrate that for flat obstacles of finite size, two fundamentally different orientation patterns peaked at either +35/-35 or +70/0/-70 degrees exhibit mutually exclusive stability, in agreement with earlier results for flat obstacles of very large lateral extension. We calculat...

  8. F-actin-like filaments formed by plasmid segregation protein ParM

    van den Ent, Fusinita; Møller-Jensen, Jakob; Amos, Linda A.;

    2002-01-01

    of Escherichia coli formed by ParM, a plasmid-encoded protein required for accurate segregation of low-copy-number plasmid R1. We show here that ParM polymerizes into double helical protofilaments with a longitudinal repeat similar to filamentous actin (F-actin) and MreB filaments that maintain the cell shape...... compared with F-actin, despite the similar arrangement of the subunits within the filaments. Thus, there is now evidence for cytoskeletal structures, formed by actin-like filaments that are involved in plasmid partitioning in E.coli. Udgivelsesdato: Dec 16...

  9. Cysteine-rich protein 1 (CRP1 regulates actin filament bundling

    Fraley Tamara S

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Cysteine-rich protein 1 (CRP1 is a LIM domain containing protein localized to the nucleus and the actin cytoskeleton. CRP1 has been demonstrated to bind the actin-bundling protein α-actinin and proposed to modulate the actin cytoskeleton; however, specific regulatory mechanisms have not been identified. Results CRP1 expression increased actin bundling in rat embryonic fibroblasts. Although CRP1 did not affect the bundling activity of α-actinin, CRP1 was found to stabilize the interaction of α-actinin with actin bundles and to directly bundle actin microfilaments. Using confocal and photobleaching fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET microscopy, we demonstrate that there are two populations of CRP1 localized along actin stress fibers, one associated through interaction with α-actinin and one that appears to bind the actin filaments directly. Consistent with a role in regulating actin filament cross-linking, CRP1 also localized to the membrane ruffles of spreading and PDGF treated fibroblasts. Conclusion CRP1 regulates actin filament bundling by directly cross-linking actin filaments and stabilizing the interaction of α-actinin with actin filament bundles.

  10. Actin Filament Bundles in Drosophila Wing Hairs: Hairs and Bristles Use Different Strategies for Assembly

    Guild, Gregory M.; Connelly, Patricia S.; Ruggiero, Linda; Vranich, Kelly A.; Tilney, Lewis G.

    2005-01-01

    Actin filament bundles can shape cellular extensions into dramatically different forms. We examined cytoskeleton formation during wing hair morphogenesis using both confocal and electron microscopy. Hairs elongate with linear kinetics (∼1 μm/h) over the course of ∼18 h. The resulting structure is vividly asymmetric and shaped like a rose thorn—elongated in the distal direction, curved in two dimensions with an oval base and a round tip. High-resolution analysis shows that the cytoskeleton for...

  11. Structure of a Filament-Like Actin Trimer Bound to the Bacterial Effector VopL

    Zahm, Jacob A.; Padrick, Shae B.; Chen, Zhucheng; Pak, Chi W.; Yunus, Ali A.; Henry, Lisa; Tomchick, Diana R.; Chen, Zhe; Rosen, Michael K.

    2013-01-01

    Bacterial pathogens use secreted effector proteins to subvert host-cell defenses. VopL is an effector protein from Vibrio parahaemolyticus that nucleates actin filaments. VopL consists of a VopL C-terminal Domain (VCD) and a tandem array of three WASP homology 2 (WH2) motifs. Here we report the crystal structure of the VCD dimer bound to actin. The VCD binds three actin monomers in a spatial arrangement close to that in the canonical actin filament. In this configuration each actin can readil...

  12. Temperature change does not affect force between single actin filaments and HMM from rabbit muscles.

    Kawai, M.; Kawaguchi, K; M. Saito; Ishiwata, S

    2000-01-01

    The temperature dependence of sliding force, velocity, and unbinding force was studied on actin filaments when they were placed on heavy meromyosin (HMM) attached to a glass surface. A fluorescently labeled actin filament was attached to the gelsolin-coated surface of a 1-microm polystyrene bead. The bead was trapped by optical tweezers, and HMM-actin interaction was performed at 20-35 degrees C to examine whether force is altered by the temperature change. Our experiments demonstrate that sl...

  13. Capping of the barbed ends of actin filaments by a high-affinity profilin-actin complex.

    DiNubile, M J; Huang, S

    1997-01-01

    Profilin, a ubiquitous 12 to 15-kDa protein, serves many functions, including sequestering monomeric actin, accelerating nucleotide exchange on actin monomers, decreasing the critical concentration of the barbed end of actin filaments, and promoting actin polymerization when barbed ends are free. Most previous studies have focused on profilin itself rather than its complex with actin. A high-affinity profilin-actin complex (here called profilactin) can be isolated from a poly-(L)-proline (PLP) column by sequential elution with 3 M and 7 M urea. Profilactin inhibited the elongation rate of pyrenyl-G-actin from filament seeds in a concentration- and time-dependent manner. Much greater inhibition of elongation was observed with spectrin-F-actin than gelsolin-F-actin seeds, suggesting that the major effect of profilactin was due to capping the barbed ends of actin filaments. Its dissociation constant for binding to filament ends was 0.3 microM; the on- and off-rate constants were estimated to be 1.7 x 10(3) M-1 s-1 and 4.5 x 10(-4) s-1, respectively. Purified profilin (obtained by repetitive applications to a PLP column and assessed by silver-stained polyacylamide gels) did not slow the elongation rate of pyrenyl-G-actin from filament seeds. Capping protein could not be detected by Western blotting in the profilactin preparation, but low concentrations of gelsolin did contaminate our preparation. However, prolonged incubation with either calcium or EGTA did not affect capping activity, implying that contaminating gelsolin-actin complexes were not primarily responsible for the observed capping activity. Reapplication of the profilactin preparation to PLP-coupled Sepharose removed both profilin and actin and concurrently eliminated its capping activity. Profilactin that was reapplied to uncoupled Sepharose retained its capping activity. Phosphatidylinositol-4,5-bisphosphate (PIP2) was the most potent phosphoinositol in reducing the capping activity of profilactin

  14. CLIC5 Stabilizes Membrane-Actin Filament Linkages at the Base of Hair Cell Stereocilia in a Molecular Complex with Radixin, Taperin, and Myosin VI

    Salles, Felipe T.; Andrade, Leonardo R.; Tanda, Soichi; Grati, M’hamed; Plona, Kathleen L.; Gagnon, Leona H.; Johnson, Kenneth R.; Kachar, Bechara; Berryman, Mark A.

    2013-01-01

    Chloride intracellular channel 5 protein (CLIC5) was originally isolated from microvilli in complex with actin binding proteins including ezrin, a member of the Ezrin-Radixin-Moesin (ERM) family of membrane-cytoskeletal linkers. CLIC5 concentrates at the base of hair cell stereocilia and is required for normal hearing and balance in mice, but its functional significance is poorly understood. This study investigated the role of CLIC5 in postnatal development and maintenance of hair bundles. Co...

  15. Networks of Polarized Actin Filaments in the Axon Initial Segment Provide a Mechanism for Sorting Axonal and Dendritic Proteins

    Kaori Watanabe

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Trafficking of proteins specifically to the axonal or somatodendritic membrane allows neurons to establish and maintain polarized compartments with distinct morphology and function. Diverse evidence suggests that an actin-dependent vesicle filter within the axon initial segment (AIS plays a critical role in polarized trafficking; however, no distinctive actin-based structures capable of comprising such a filter have been found within the AIS. Here, using correlative light and scanning electron microscopy, we visualized networks of actin filaments several microns wide within the AIS of cortical neurons in culture. Individual filaments within these patches are predominantly oriented with their plus ends facing toward the cell body, consistent with models of filter selectivity. Vesicles carrying dendritic proteins are much more likely to stop in regions occupied by the actin patches than in other regions, indicating that the patches likely prevent movement of dendritic proteins to the axon and thereby act as a vesicle filter.

  16. Direct visualization of flow-induced conformational transitions of single actin filaments in entangled solutions

    Kirchenbuechler, Inka; Kurniawan, Nicholas A; Koenderink, Gijsje H; Lettinga, M Paul

    2015-01-01

    While semi-flexible polymers and fibers are an important class of material due to their rich mechanical properties, it remains unclear how these properties relate to the microscopic conformation of the polymers. Actin filaments constitute an ideal model polymer system due to their micron-sized length and relatively high stiffness that allow imaging at the single filament level. Here we study the effect of entanglements on the conformational dynamics of actin filaments in shear flow. We directly measure the full three-dimensional conformation of single actin filaments, using confocal microscopy in combination with a counter-rotating cone-plate shear cell. We show that initially entangled filaments form disentangled orientationally ordered hairpins, confined in the flow-vorticity plane. In addition, shear flow causes stretching and shear alignment of the hairpin tails, while the filament length distribution remains unchanged. These observations explain the strain-softening and shear-thinning behavior of entangl...

  17. Mesoscopic model for filament orientation in growing actin networks: the role of obstacle geometry

    Propulsion by growing actin networks is a universal mechanism used in many different biological systems, ranging from the sheet-like lamellipodium of crawling animal cells to the actin comet tails induced by certain bacteria and viruses in order to move within their host cells. Although the core molecular machinery for actin network growth is well preserved in all of these cases, the geometry of the propelled obstacle varies considerably. During recent years, filament orientation distribution has emerged as an important observable characterizing the structure and dynamical state of the growing network. Here we derive several continuum equations for the orientation distribution of filaments growing behind stiff obstacles of various shapes and validate the predicted steady state orientation patterns by stochastic computer simulations based on discrete filaments. We use an ordinary differential equation approach to demonstrate that for flat obstacles of finite size, two fundamentally different orientation patterns peaked at either ±35° or +70°/0°/ − 70° exhibit mutually exclusive stability, in agreement with earlier results for flat obstacles of very large lateral extension. We calculate and validate phase diagrams as a function of model parameters and show how this approach can be extended to obstacles with piecewise straight contours. For curved obstacles, we arrive at a partial differential equation in the continuum limit, which again is in good agreement with the computer simulations. In all cases, we can identify the same two fundamentally different orientation patterns, but only within an appropriate reference frame, which is adjusted to the local orientation of the obstacle contour. Our results suggest that two fundamentally different network architectures compete with each other in growing actin networks, irrespective of obstacle geometry, and clarify how simulated and electron tomography data have to be analyzed for non-flat obstacle geometries. (paper)

  18. Structural Transition of Actin Filament in a Cell-Sized Water Droplet with a Phospholipid Membrane

    Hase, M

    2005-01-01

    Actin filament, F-actin, is a semiflexible polymer with a negative charge, and is one of the main constituents on cell membranes. To clarify the effect of cross-talk between a phospholipid membrane and actin filaments in cells, we conducted microscopic observations on the structural changes in actin filaments in a cell-sized (several tens of micrometers in diameter) water droplet coated with a phospholipid membrane such as phosphatidylserine (PS; negatively-charged head group) or phosphatidylethanolamine (PE; neutral head group) as a simple model of a living cell membrane. With PS, actin filaments are distributed uniformly in the water phase without adsorption onto the membrane surface between 2 and 6 mM Mg2+, while between 6 and 12 mM Mg2+, actin filaments are adsorbed onto the inner membrane surface. With PE, actin filaments are uniformly adsorbed onto the inner membrane surface between 2 and 12 mM Mg2+. With both PS and PE membranes, at Mg2+ concentrations higher than 12 mM, thick bundles are formed in the...

  19. CLIC5 stabilizes membrane-actin filament linkages at the base of hair cell stereocilia in a molecular complex with radixin, taperin, and myosin VI.

    Salles, Felipe T; Andrade, Leonardo R; Tanda, Soichi; Grati, M'hamed; Plona, Kathleen L; Gagnon, Leona H; Johnson, Kenneth R; Kachar, Bechara; Berryman, Mark A

    2014-01-01

    Chloride intracellular channel 5 protein (CLIC5) was originally isolated from microvilli in complex with actin binding proteins including ezrin, a member of the Ezrin-Radixin-Moesin (ERM) family of membrane-cytoskeletal linkers. CLIC5 concentrates at the base of hair cell stereocilia and is required for normal hearing and balance in mice, but its functional significance is poorly understood. This study investigated the role of CLIC5 in postnatal development and maintenance of hair bundles. Confocal and scanning electron microscopy of CLIC5-deficient jitterbug (jbg) mice revealed progressive fusion of stereocilia as early as postnatal day 10. Radixin (RDX), protein tyrosine phosphatase receptor Q (PTPRQ), and taperin (TPRN), deafness-associated proteins that also concentrate at the base of stereocilia, were mislocalized in fused stereocilia of jbg mice. TPRQ and RDX were dispersed even prior to stereocilia fusion. Biochemical assays showed interaction of CLIC5 with ERM proteins, TPRN, and possibly myosin VI (MYO6). In addition, CLIC5 and RDX failed to localize normally in fused stereocilia of MYO6 mutant mice. Based on these findings, we propose a model in which these proteins work together as a complex to stabilize linkages between the plasma membrane and subjacent actin cytoskeleton at the base of stereocilia. PMID:24285636

  20. Twirling motion of actin filaments in gliding assays with non-processive myosin motors

    Vilfan, Andrej

    2009-01-01

    We present a model study of gliding assays in which actin filaments are moved by non-processive myosin motors. We show that even if the power stroke of the motor protein has no lateral component, the filaments will rotate around their axis while moving over the surface. Notably, the handedness of this twirling motion is opposite from that of the actin filament structure. It stems from the fact that the gliding actin filament has "target zones" where its subunits point towards the surface and are therefore more accessible for myosin heads. Each myosin head has a higher binding probability before it reaches the center of the target zone than afterwards, which results in a left-handed twirling. We present a stochastic simulation and an approximative analytical solution. The calculated pitch of the twirling motion depends on the filament velocity (ATP concentration). It reaches about 400nm for low speeds and increases with higher speeds.

  1. ER sheet persistence is coupled to myosin 1c–regulated dynamic actin filament arrays

    Joensuu, Merja; Belevich, Ilya; Rämö, Olli; Nevzorov, Ilya; Vihinen, Helena; Puhka, Maija; Witkos, Tomasz M.; Lowe, Martin; Vartiainen, Maria K.; Jokitalo, Eija

    2014-01-01

    The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) comprises a dynamic three-dimensional (3D) network with diverse structural and functional domains. Proper ER operation requires an intricate balance within and between dynamics, morphology, and functions, but how these processes are coupled in cells has been unclear. Using live-cell imaging and 3D electron microscopy, we identify a specific subset of actin filaments localizing to polygons defined by ER sheets and tubules and describe a role for these actin arrays in ER sheet persistence and, thereby, in maintenance of the characteristic network architecture by showing that actin depolymerization leads to increased sheet fluctuation and transformations and results in small and less abundant sheet remnants and a defective ER network distribution. Furthermore, we identify myosin 1c localizing to the ER-associated actin filament arrays and reveal a novel role for myosin 1c in regulating these actin structures, as myosin 1c manipulations lead to loss of the actin filaments and to similar ER phenotype as observed after actin depolymerization. We propose that ER-associated actin filaments have a role in ER sheet persistence regulation and thus support the maintenance of sheets as a stationary subdomain of the dynamic ER network. PMID:24523293

  2. ER sheet persistence is coupled to myosin 1c-regulated dynamic actin filament arrays.

    Joensuu, Merja; Belevich, Ilya; Rämö, Olli; Nevzorov, Ilya; Vihinen, Helena; Puhka, Maija; Witkos, Tomasz M; Lowe, Martin; Vartiainen, Maria K; Jokitalo, Eija

    2014-04-01

    The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) comprises a dynamic three-dimensional (3D) network with diverse structural and functional domains. Proper ER operation requires an intricate balance within and between dynamics, morphology, and functions, but how these processes are coupled in cells has been unclear. Using live-cell imaging and 3D electron microscopy, we identify a specific subset of actin filaments localizing to polygons defined by ER sheets and tubules and describe a role for these actin arrays in ER sheet persistence and, thereby, in maintenance of the characteristic network architecture by showing that actin depolymerization leads to increased sheet fluctuation and transformations and results in small and less abundant sheet remnants and a defective ER network distribution. Furthermore, we identify myosin 1c localizing to the ER-associated actin filament arrays and reveal a novel role for myosin 1c in regulating these actin structures, as myosin 1c manipulations lead to loss of the actin filaments and to similar ER phenotype as observed after actin depolymerization. We propose that ER-associated actin filaments have a role in ER sheet persistence regulation and thus support the maintenance of sheets as a stationary subdomain of the dynamic ER network. PMID:24523293

  3. Dendritic Actin Filament Nucleation Causes Traveling Waves and Patches

    Carlsson, Anders E

    2010-01-01

    The polymerization of actin via branching at a cell membrane containing nucleation-promoting factors is simulated using a stochastic-growth methodology. The polymerized-actin distribution displays three types of behavior: a) traveling waves, b) moving patches, and c) random fluctuations. Increasing actin concentration causes a transition from patches to waves. The waves and patches move by a treadmilling mechanism which does not require myosin II. The effects of downregulation of key proteins on actin wave behavior are evaluated.

  4. Dendritic Actin Filament Nucleation Causes Traveling Waves and Patches

    Carlsson, Anders E.

    2010-06-01

    The polymerization of actin via branching at a cell membrane containing nucleation-promoting factors is simulated using a stochastic-growth methodology. The polymerized-actin distribution displays three types of behavior: (a) traveling waves, (b) moving patches, and (c) random fluctuations. Increasing actin concentration causes a transition from patches to waves. The waves and patches move by a treadmilling mechanism not involving myosin II. The effects of downregulation of key proteins on actin wave behavior are evaluated.

  5. Fullerenol Nanoparticles with Structural Activity Induce Variable Intracellular Actin Filament Morphologies.

    Jin, Junjiang; Dong, Ying; Wang, Ying; Xia, Lin; Gu, Weihong; Bai, Xue; Chang, Yanan; Zhang, Mingyi; Chen, Kui; Li, Juan; Zhao, Lina; Xing, Gengmei

    2016-06-01

    Fullerenol nanoparticles are promising for various biological applications; many studies have shown that they induce variable and diverse biological effects including side effects. Separation and purification of two fractions of fullerenols has demonstrated that they have varied chemical structures on the surfaces of their carbon cages. Actin is an important structural protein that is able to transform functional structures under varied physiological conditions. We assessed the abilities of the two fractions of fullerenols to attach to actin and induce variable morphological features in actin filament structures. Specifically the fullerenol fraction with a surface electric charge of -1.913 ± 0.008q (x10(-6) C) has percentages of C-OH and C=O on the carbon cage of 16.14 ± 0.60 and 17.55 ± 0.69. These features allow it to form intermolecular hydrogen bonds with actin at a stoichiometric ratio of four fullerenols per actin subunit. Molecular simulations revealed these specific binding sites and binding modes in atomic details in the interaction between the active fullerenol and actin filament. Conversely, these interactions were not possible for the other fraction of fullerenol with that percentages of C-OH and C=O on the carbon cage were 15.59 ± 0.01 and 1.94 ± 0.11. Neither sample induced appreciable cytotoxicity or acute cell death. After entering cells, active fullerenol binding to actin induces variable morphological features and may transform ATP-actin to ADP-actin. These changes facilitate the binding of ADF/cofilin, allowing cofilin to sever actin filaments to form cofilin/actin/fullerenol rods. Our findings suggest that fullerenol with structural activity binding disturbs actin filament structure, which may inhibit locomotion of cell or induce chronic side effects in to cells. PMID:27319217

  6. Dynamics of actin cables in polarized growth of the filamentous fungus Aspergillus nidulans

    Anna eBergs

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Highly polarized growth of filamentous fungi requires a continuous supply of proteins and lipids to the hyphal tip. This transport is managed by vesicle trafficking via the actin and microtubule cytoskeletons and their associated motor proteins. Particularly, actin cables originating from the hyphal tip are essential for hyphal growth. Although specific marker proteins to visualize actin cables have been developed in filamentous fungi, the exact organization and dynamics of actin cables has remained elusive. Here we visualized actin cables using tropomyosin (TpmA and Lifeact fused to fluorescent proteins in Aspergillus nidulans and studied the dynamics and regulation. GFP tagged TpmA visualized dynamic actin cables formed from the hyphal tip with cycles of elongation and shrinkage. The elongation and shrinkage rates of actin cables were similar and approximately 0.6 μm/s. Comparison of actin markers revealed that high concentrations of Lifeact reduced actin dynamics. Simultaneous visualization of actin cables and microtubules suggests temporally and spatially coordinated polymerization and depolymerization between the two cytoskeletons. Our results provide new insights into the molecular mechanism of ordered polarized growth regulated by actin cables and microtubules.

  7. Dynamics of Actin Cables in Polarized Growth of the Filamentous Fungus Aspergillus nidulans

    Bergs, Anna; Ishitsuka, Yuji; Evangelinos, Minoas; Nienhaus, G. U.; Takeshita, Norio

    2016-01-01

    Highly polarized growth of filamentous fungi requires a continuous supply of proteins and lipids to the hyphal tip. This transport is managed by vesicle trafficking via the actin and microtubule cytoskeletons and their associated motor proteins. Particularly, actin cables originating from the hyphal tip are essential for hyphal growth. Although, specific marker proteins have been developed to visualize actin cables in filamentous fungi, the exact organization and dynamics of actin cables has remained elusive. Here, we observed actin cables using tropomyosin (TpmA) and Lifeact fused to fluorescent proteins in living Aspergillus nidulans hyphae and studied the dynamics and regulation. GFP tagged TpmA visualized dynamic actin cables formed from the hyphal tip with cycles of elongation and shrinkage. The elongation and shrinkage rates of actin cables were similar and approximately 0.6 μm/s. Comparison of actin markers revealed that high concentrations of Lifeact reduced actin dynamics. Simultaneous visualization of actin cables and microtubules suggests temporally and spatially coordinated polymerization and depolymerization between the two cytoskeletons. Our results provide new insights into the molecular mechanism of ordered polarized growth regulated by actin cables and microtubules.

  8. Cations Stiffen Actin Filaments by Adhering a Key Structural Element to Adjacent Subunits.

    Hocky, Glen M; Baker, Joseph L; Bradley, Michael J; Sinitskiy, Anton V; De La Cruz, Enrique M; Voth, Gregory A

    2016-05-26

    Ions regulate the assembly and mechanical properties of actin filaments. Recent work using structural bioinformatics and site-specific mutagenesis favors the existence of two discrete and specific divalent cation binding sites on actin filaments, positioned in the long axis between actin subunits. Cation binding at one site drives polymerization, while the other modulates filament stiffness and plays a role in filament severing by the regulatory protein, cofilin. Existing structural methods have not been able to resolve filament-associated cations, and so in this work we turn to molecular dynamics simulations to suggest a candidate binding pocket geometry for each site and to elucidate the mechanism by which occupancy of the "stiffness site" affects filament mechanical properties. Incorporating a magnesium ion in the "polymerization site" does not seem to require any large-scale change to an actin subunit's conformation. Binding of a magnesium ion in the "stiffness site" adheres the actin DNase-binding loop (D-loop) to its long-axis neighbor, which increases the filament torsional stiffness and bending persistence length. Our analysis shows that bound D-loops occupy a smaller region of accessible conformational space. Cation occupancy buries key conserved residues of the D-loop, restricting accessibility to regulatory proteins and enzymes that target these amino acids. PMID:27146246

  9. The Actin Filament-Binding Protein Coronin Regulates Motility in Plasmodium Sporozoites

    Bane, Kartik S.; Singer, Mirko; Reinig, Miriam; Klug, Dennis; Heiss, Kirsten; Baum, Jake; Mueller, Ann-Kristin; Frischknecht, Friedrich

    2016-01-01

    Parasites causing malaria need to migrate in order to penetrate tissue barriers and enter host cells. Here we show that the actin filament-binding protein coronin regulates gliding motility in Plasmodium berghei sporozoites, the highly motile forms of a rodent malaria-causing parasite transmitted by mosquitoes. Parasites lacking coronin show motility defects that impair colonization of the mosquito salivary glands but not migration in the skin, yet result in decreased transmission efficiency. In non-motile sporozoites low calcium concentrations mediate actin-independent coronin localization to the periphery. Engagement of extracellular ligands triggers an intracellular calcium release followed by the actin-dependent relocalization of coronin to the rear and initiation of motility. Mutational analysis and imaging suggest that coronin organizes actin filaments for productive motility. Using coronin-mCherry as a marker for the presence of actin filaments we found that protein kinase A contributes to actin filament disassembly. We finally speculate that calcium and cAMP-mediated signaling regulate a switch from rapid parasite motility to host cell invasion by differentially influencing actin dynamics. PMID:27409081

  10. Actin filaments as the fast pathways for calcium ions involved in auditory processes

    Miljko V Sataric; Dalibor L Sekulic; Bogdan M Sataric

    2015-09-01

    We investigated the polyelectrolyte properties of actin filaments which are in interaction with myosin motors, basic participants in mechano-electrical transduction in the stereocilia of the inner ear. Here, we elaborated a model in which actin filaments play the role of guides or pathways for localized flow of calcium ions. It is well recognized that calcium ions are implicated in tuning of actin-myosin cross-bridge interaction, which controls the mechanical property of hair bundle. Actin filaments enable much more efficient delivery of calcium ions and faster mechanism for their distribution within the stereocilia. With this model we were able to semiquantitatively explain experimental evidences regarding the way of how calcium ions tune the mechanosensitivity of hair cells.

  11. Coronin Promotes the Rapid Assembly and Cross-linking of Actin Filaments and May Link the Actin and Microtubule Cytoskeletons in Yeast

    Goode, Bruce L.; Wong, Jonathan J.; Butty, Anne-Christine; Peter, Matthias; McCormack, Ashley L.; Yates, John R.; Drubin, David G.; Barnes, Georjana

    1999-01-01

    Coronin is a highly conserved actin-associated protein that until now has had unknown biochemical activities. Using microtubule affinity chromatography, we coisolated actin and a homologue of coronin, Crn1p, from Saccharomyces cerevisiae cell extracts. Crn1p is an abundant component of the cortical actin cytoskeleton and binds to F-actin with high affinity (K d 6 × 10−9 M). Crn1p promotes the rapid barbed-end assembly of actin filaments and cross-links filaments into bundles and more complex ...

  12. Bidirectional Interplay between Vimentin Intermediate Filaments and Contractile Actin Stress Fibers

    Yaming Jiu

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available The actin cytoskeleton and cytoplasmic intermediate filaments contribute to cell migration and morphogenesis, but the interplay between these two central cytoskeletal elements has remained elusive. Here, we find that specific actin stress fiber structures, transverse arcs, interact with vimentin intermediate filaments and promote their retrograde flow. Consequently, myosin-II-containing arcs are important for perinuclear localization of the vimentin network in cells. The vimentin network reciprocally restricts retrograde movement of arcs and hence controls the width of flat lamellum at the leading edge of the cell. Depletion of plectin recapitulates the vimentin organization phenotype of arc-deficient cells without affecting the integrity of vimentin filaments or stress fibers, demonstrating that this cytoskeletal cross-linker is required for productive interactions between vimentin and arcs. Collectively, our results reveal that plectin-mediated interplay between contractile actomyosin arcs and vimentin intermediate filaments controls the localization and dynamics of these two cytoskeletal systems and is consequently important for cell morphogenesis.

  13. The structural basis for the intrinsic disorder of the actin filament: the "lateral slipping" model

    1991-01-01

    Three-dimensional (3-D) helical reconstructions computed from electron micrographs of negatively stained dispersed F-actin filaments invariably revealed two uninterrupted columns of mass forming the "backbone" of the double-helical filament. The contact between neighboring subunits along the thus defined two long-pitch helical strands was spatially conserved and of high mass density, while the intersubunit contact between them was of lower mass density and varied among reconstructions. In con...

  14. Characterization of the myosin light chain kinase from smooth muscle as an actin-binding protein that assembles actin filaments in vitro.

    Hayakawa, K; Okagaki, T; Ye, L H; Samizo, K; Higashi-Fujime, S; Takagi, T; Kohama, K

    1999-05-01

    In addition to its kinase activity, myosin light chain kinase has an actin-binding activity, which results in bundling of actin filaments [Hayakawa et al., Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun. 199, 786-791, 1994]. There are two actin-binding sites on the kinase: calcium- and calmodulin-sensitive and insensitive sites [Ye et al., J. Biol. Chem. 272, 32182-32189, 1997]. The calcium/calmodulin-sensitive, actin-binding site is located at Asp2-Pro41 and the insensitive site is at Ser138-Met213. The cyanogen bromide fragment, consisting of Asp2-Met213, is furnished with both sites and is the actin-binding core of myosin light chain kinase. Cross-linking between the two sites assembles actin filaments into bundles. Breaking of actin-binding at the calcium/calmodulin-sensitive site by calcium/calmodulin disassembles the bundles. PMID:10231551

  15. Visualisation of microtubules and actin filaments in fixed BY-2 suspension cells using an optimised whole mount immunolabelling protocol

    Szechynska-Hebda, M.; Wedzony, M.; Dubas, E.; Kieft, H; Lammeren, van, ACAP Andre

    2006-01-01

    Excellent visualisation of microtubules and actin filaments was obtained in fixed tobacco BY-2 suspension cells after optimising a protocol for whole mount immunolabelling. The procedure is based on modification of fixation, cell wall digestion, dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) treatment, post fixation, and blocking. The most critical aspects of successful preservation and visualization of cytoskeletal elements appeared to be: a two-step fixation with paraformaldehyde and glutaraldehyde before enzym...

  16. A novel multitarget tracking algorithm for Myosin VI protein molecules on actin filaments in TIRFM sequences.

    Li, G; Sanchez, V; Nagaraj, P C S B; Khan, S; Rajpoot, N

    2015-12-01

    We propose a novel multitarget tracking framework for Myosin VI protein molecules in total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy sequences which integrates an extended Hungarian algorithm with an interacting multiple model filter. The extended Hungarian algorithm, which is a linear assignment problem based method, helps to solve measurement assignment and spot association problems commonly encountered when dealing with multiple targets, although a two-motion model interacting multiple model filter increases the tracking accuracy by modelling the nonlinear dynamics of Myosin VI protein molecules on actin filaments. The evaluation of our tracking framework is conducted on both real and synthetic total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy sequences. The results show that the framework achieves higher tracking accuracies compared to the state-of-the-art tracking methods, especially for sequences with high spot density. PMID:26259144

  17. Live Cell Imaging of Actin Dynamics in the Filamentous Fungus Aspergillus nidulans.

    Schultzhaus, Zachary; Quintanilla, Laura; Hilton, Angelyn; Shaw, Brian D

    2016-04-01

    Hyphal cells of filamentous fungi grow at their tips in a method analogous to pollen tube and root hair elongation. This process, generally referred to as tip growth, requires precise regulation of the actin cytoskeleton, and characterizing the various actin structures in these cell types is currently an active area of research. Here, the actin marker Lifeact was used to document actin dynamics in the filamentous fungus Aspergillus nidulans. Contractile double rings were observed at septa, and annular clusters of puncta were seen subtending growing hyphal tips, corresponding to the well-characterized subapical endocytic collar. However, Lifeact also revealed two additional structures. One, an apical array, was dynamic on the face opposite the tip, while a subapical web was dynamic on the apical face and was located several microns behind the growth site. Each was observed turning into the other over time, implying that they could represent different localizations of the same structure, although hyphae with a subapical web grew faster than those exhibiting an apical array. The subapical web has not been documented in any filamentous fungus to date, and is separate from the networks of F-actin seen in other tip-growing organisms surrounding septa or stationary along the plasmalemma. PMID:26879694

  18. Actin filaments target the oligomeric maturation of the dynamin GTPase Drp1 to mitochondrial fission sites.

    Ji, Wei-ke; Hatch, Anna L; Merrill, Ronald A; Strack, Stefan; Higgs, Henry N

    2015-01-01

    While the dynamin GTPase Drp1 plays a critical role during mitochondrial fission, mechanisms controlling its recruitment to fission sites are unclear. A current assumption is that cytosolic Drp1 is recruited directly to fission sites immediately prior to fission. Using live-cell microscopy, we find evidence for a different model, progressive maturation of Drp1 oligomers on mitochondria through incorporation of smaller mitochondrially-bound Drp1 units. Maturation of a stable Drp1 oligomer does not forcibly lead to fission. Drp1 oligomers also translocate directionally along mitochondria. Ionomycin, a calcium ionophore, causes rapid mitochondrial accumulation of actin filaments followed by Drp1 accumulation at the fission site, and increases fission rate. Inhibiting actin polymerization, myosin IIA, or the formin INF2 reduces both un-stimulated and ionomycin-induced Drp1 accumulation and mitochondrial fission. Actin filaments bind purified Drp1 and increase GTPase activity in a manner that is synergistic with the mitochondrial protein Mff, suggesting a role for direct Drp1/actin interaction. We propose that Drp1 is in dynamic equilibrium on mitochondria in a fission-independent manner, and that fission factors such as actin filaments target productive oligomerization to fission sites. PMID:26609810

  19. Myopathy-inducing mutation H40Y in ACTA1 hampers actin filament structure and function.

    Chan, Chun; Fan, Jun; Messer, Andrew E; Marston, Steve B; Iwamoto, Hiroyuki; Ochala, Julien

    2016-08-01

    In humans, more than 200 missense mutations have been identified in the ACTA1 gene. The exact molecular mechanisms by which, these particular mutations become toxic and lead to muscle weakness and myopathies remain obscure. To address this, here, we performed a molecular dynamics simulation, and we used a broad range of biophysical assays to determine how the lethal and myopathy-related H40Y amino acid substitution in actin affects the structure, stability, and function of this protein. Interestingly, our results showed that H40Y severely disrupts the DNase I-binding-loop structure and actin filaments. In addition, we observed that normal and mutant actin monomers are likely to form distinctive homopolymers, with mutant filaments being very stiff, and not supporting proper myosin binding. These phenomena underlie the toxicity of H40Y and may be considered as important triggering factors for the contractile dysfunction, muscle weakness and disease phenotype seen in patients. PMID:27112274

  20. On the properties of a bundle of flexible actin filaments in an optical trap

    Perilli, Alessia; Pierleoni, Carlo; Ciccotti, Giovanni; Ryckaert, Jean-Paul

    2016-06-01

    We establish the statistical mechanics framework for a bundle of Nf living and uncrosslinked actin filaments in a supercritical solution of free monomers pressing against a mobile wall. The filaments are anchored normally to a fixed planar surface at one of their ends and, because of their limited flexibility, they grow almost parallel to each other. Their growing ends hit a moving obstacle, depicted as a second planar wall, parallel to the previous one and subjected to a harmonic compressive force. The force constant is denoted as the trap strength while the distance between the two walls as the trap length to make contact with the experimental optical trap apparatus. For an ideal solution of reactive filaments and free monomers at fixed free monomer chemical potential μ1, we obtain the general expression for the grand potential from which we derive averages and distributions of relevant physical quantities, namely, the obstacle position, the bundle polymerization force, and the number of filaments in direct contact with the wall. The grafted living filaments are modeled as discrete Wormlike chains, with F-actin persistence length ℓp, subject to discrete contour length variations ±d (the monomer size) to model single monomer (de)polymerization steps. Rigid filaments (ℓp = ∞), either isolated or in bundles, all provide average values of the stalling force in agreement with Hill's predictions Fs H = N f k B T ln ( ρ 1 / ρ 1 c) / d , independent of the average trap length. Here ρ1 is the density of free monomers in the solution and ρ1c its critical value at which the filament does not grow nor shrink in the absence of external forces. Flexible filaments (ℓp product of two strongly L-dependent contributions: the fraction of touching filaments ∝ (" separators=" O . T .) 2 and the single filament buckling force ∝ (" separators=" O . T .) - 2 .

  1. On the Properties of a Bundle of Flexible Actin Filaments in an Optical Trap

    Perilli, Alessia; Ciccotti, Giovanni; Ryckaert, Jean Paul

    2016-01-01

    We establish the Statistical Mechanics framework for a bundle of Nf living and uncrosslinked actin filaments in a supercritical solution of free monomers pressing against a mobile wall. The filaments are anchored normally to a fixed planar surface at one of their ends and, because of their limited flexibility, they grow almost parallel to each other. Their growing ends hit a moving obstacle, depicted as a second planar wall, parallel to the previous one and subjected to a harmonic compressive force. The force constant is denoted as trap strength while the distance between the two walls as trap length to make contact with the experimental optical trap apparatus. For an ideal solution of reactive filaments and free monomers at fixed free monomers chemical potential, we obtain the general expression for the grand potential from which we derive averages and distributions of relevant physical quantities, namely the obstacle position, the bundle polymerization force and the number of filaments in direct contact wit...

  2. Two-Photon Correlation Spectroscopy in Single Dendritic Spines Reveals Fast Actin Filament Reorganization during Activity-Dependent Growth.

    Jian-Hua Chen

    Full Text Available Two-photon fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (2P-FCS within single dendritic spines of living hippocampal pyramidal neurons was used to resolve various subpopulations of mobile F-actin during activity-dependent structural changes such as potentiation induced spine head growth. Two major classes of mobile F-actin were discovered: very dynamic and about a hundred times less dynamic F-actin. Spine head enlargement upon application of Tetraethylammonium (TEA, a protocol previously used for the chemical induction of long-term potentiation (cLTP strictly correlated to changes in the dynamics and filament numbers in the different actin filament fractions. Our observations suggest that spine enlargement is governed by a mechanism in which longer filaments are first cut into smaller filaments that cooperate with the second, increasingly dynamic shorter actin filament population to quickly reorganize and expand the actin cytoskeleton within the spine head. This process would allow a fast and efficient spine head enlargement using a major fraction of the actin filament population that was already present before spine head growth.

  3. Human Muscle LIM Protein Dimerizes along the Actin Cytoskeleton and Cross-Links Actin Filaments

    Hoffmann, Céline; Moreau, Flora; Moes, Michèle; Luthold, Carole; Dieterle, Monika; Goretti, Emeline; Neumann, Katrin; Steinmetz, André; Thomas, Clément

    2014-01-01

    The muscle LIM protein (MLP) is a nucleocytoplasmic shuttling protein playing important roles in the regulation of myocyte remodeling and adaptation to hypertrophic stimuli. Missense mutations in human MLP or its ablation in transgenic mice promotes cardiomyopathy and heart failure. The exact function(s) of MLP in the cytoplasmic compartment and the underlying molecular mechanisms remain largely unknown. Here, we provide evidence that MLP autonomously binds to, stabilizes, and bundles actin f...

  4. Kinetics of the Formation and Dissociation of Actin Filament Branches Mediated by Arp2/3 Complex

    Mahaffy, Rachel E.; Pollard, Thomas D.

    2006-01-01

    The actin filament network at the leading edge of motile cells relies on localized branching by Arp2/3 complex from “mother” filaments growing near the plasma membrane. The nucleotide bound to the mother filaments (ATP, ADP and phosphate, or ADP) may influence the branch dynamics. To determine the effect of the nucleotide bound to the subunits of the mother filament on the formation and stability of branches, we compared the time courses of actin polymerization in bulk samples measured using ...

  5. Interactions between actin and myosin filaments in skeletal muscle visualized in frozen-hydrated thin sections.

    Trus, B L; Steven, A C; McDowall, A W; M. Unser; Dubochet, J; Podolsky, R J

    1989-01-01

    For the purpose of determining net interactions between actin and myosin filaments in muscle cells, perhaps the single most informative view of the myofilament lattice is its averaged axial projection. We have studied frozen-hydrated transverse thin sections with the goal of obtaining axial projections that are not subject to the limitations of conventional thin sectioning (suspect preservation of native structure) or of equatorial x-ray diffraction analysis (lack of experimental phases). In ...

  6. Spontaneous oscillatory contraction without regulatory proteins in actin filament-reconstituted fibers.

    H Fujita; Ishiwata, S

    1998-01-01

    Skinned skeletal and cardiac muscle fibers exhibits spontaneous oscillatory contraction (SPOC) in the presence of MgATP, MgADP, and inorganic phosphate (Pi)1 but the molecular mechanism underlying this phenomenon is not yet clear. We have investigated the role of regulatory proteins in SPOC using cardiac muscle fibers of which the actin filaments had been reconstituted without tropomyosin and troponin, according to a previously reported method (Fujita et al., 1996. Biophys. J. 71:2307-2318). ...

  7. Cytosolic Proteins From Tobacco Pollen Tubes That Crosslink Microtubules and Actin Filaments In Vitro Are Metabolic Enzymes

    Romagnoli, Silvia; Faleri, Claudia; Bini, Luca; Baskin, Tobias I.; Cresti, Mauro

    2010-01-01

    In plant cells, many processes require cooperative action of both microtubules and actin filaments, but proteins mediating interactions between these cytoskeletal members are mostly undiscovered. Here, we attempt to identify such proteins by affinity purification. Cytosol from Nicotiana tabacum (tob

  8. Critical forces for actin filament buckling and force transmission influence transport in actomyosin networks

    Stam, Samantha; Gardel, Margaret

    Viscoelastic networks of biopolymers coordinate the motion of intracellular objects during transport. These networks have nonlinear mechanical properties due to events such as filament buckling or breaking of cross-links. The influence of such nonlinear properties on the time and length scales of transport is not understood. Here, we use in vitro networks of actin and the motor protein myosin II to clarify how intracellular forces regulate active diffusion. We observe two transitions in the mean-squared displacement of cross-linked actin with increasing motor concentration. The first is a sharp transition from initially subdiffusive to diffusive-like motion that requires filament buckling but does not cause net contraction of the network. Further increase of the motor density produces a second transition to network rupture and ballistic actin transport. This corresponds with an increase in the correlation of motion and thus may be caused when forces propagate far enough for global motion. We conclude that filament buckling and overall network contraction require different amounts of force and produce distinct transport properties. These nonlinear transitions may act as mechanical switches that can be turned on to produce observed motion within cells.

  9. Capping complex formation at the slow-growing end of the actin filament.

    Kostyukova, A S

    2008-12-01

    Actin filaments are polar; their barbed (fast-growing) and pointed (slow-growing) ends differ in structure and dynamic properties. The slow-growing end is regulated by tropomodulins, a family of capping proteins that require tropomyosins for optimal function. There are four tropomodulin isoforms; their distributions vary depending on tissue type and change during development. The C-terminal half of tropomodulin contains one compact domain represented by alternating alpha-helices and beta-structures. The tropomyosin-independent actin-capping site is located at the C-terminus. The N-terminal half has no regular structure; however, it contains a tropomyosin-dependent actin-capping site and two tropomyosin-binding sites. One tropomodulin molecule can bind two tropomyosin molecules. Effectiveness of tropomodulin binding to tropomyosin depends on the tropomyosin isoform. Regulation of tropomodulin binding at the pointed end as well as capping effectiveness in the presence of specific tropomyosins may affect formation of local cytoskeleton and dynamics of actin filaments in cells. PMID:19216712

  10. A technique for simultaneous measurement of force and overlap between single muscle filaments of myosin and actin.

    Kalganov, Albert; Novinger, Rowan; Rassier, Dilson E

    2010-12-17

    In this study, we show a method for direct measurements of force and simultaneous visualization of isolated muscle filaments. Single actin filaments isolated from chicken skeletal muscle and single thick filaments isolated from Mussels were imaged using fluorescence and dark field microscopy, respectively. Force generated by the filaments was measured using micro-fabricated cantilevers. Force values were in the range observed previously with myosin filaments and molecules. The results suggest that the technique can be used to investigate many issues of interest and debate in the field of muscle biophysics. PMID:21081114

  11. Contraction of a Bundle of Actin Filaments 50 years after Szent-Gyorgyi

    Sekimoto, K; Sekimoto, Ken; Nakazawa, Hatsumi

    2000-01-01

    Biological systems are among the most challenging subjects for theoretical physicists, as well as experimentalists or simulationists. Physical principles should have been both constraints and guide-lines for the evolution of living systems over billions of years. One generally aims at clarifying what physical principles, possibly new ones, are behind the phenomena of biological interest and at understanding how they work within the entire biological world. In the present talk we describe an example of such an effort. Since the discovery of `superprecipitation' by Szent-Gyorgyi's group in 1940's, it has been a long puzzle how an assemblage of actin filaments with random orientation can contract in the presence of the two-headed myosin molecules undergoing actin-activated ATP-hydrolysis reaction. It is widely accepted that during the contraction the two-headed myosin mediates the relative sliding of two actin filaments whose polarity directions are not parallel but rather anti-parallel. But this fact solely doe...

  12. Regulation of myosin IIA and filamentous actin during insulin-stimulated glucose uptake in 3T3-L1 adipocytes

    Stall, Richard; Ramos, Joseph; Kent Fulcher, F.; Patel, Yashomati M., E-mail: ympatel@uncg.edu

    2014-03-10

    Insulin stimulated glucose uptake requires the colocalization of myosin IIA (MyoIIA) and the insulin-responsive glucose transporter 4 (GLUT4) at the plasma membrane for proper GLUT4 fusion. MyoIIA facilitates filamentous actin (F-actin) reorganization in various cell types. In adipocytes F-actin reorganization is required for insulin-stimulated glucose uptake. What is not known is whether MyoIIA interacts with F-actin to regulate insulin-induced GLUT4 fusion at the plasma membrane. To elucidate the relationship between MyoIIA and F-actin, we examined the colocalization of MyoIIA and F-actin at the plasma membrane upon insulin stimulation as well as the regulation of this interaction. Our findings demonstrated that MyoIIA and F-actin colocalized at the site of GLUT4 fusion with the plasma membrane upon insulin stimulation. Furthermore, inhibition of MyoII with blebbistatin impaired F-actin localization at the plasma membrane. Next we examined the regulatory role of calcium in MyoIIA-F-actin colocalization. Reduced calcium or calmodulin levels decreased colocalization of MyoIIA and F-actin at the plasma membrane. While calcium alone can translocate MyoIIA it did not stimulate F-actin accumulation at the plasma membrane. Taken together, we established that while MyoIIA activity is required for F-actin localization at the plasma membrane, it alone is insufficient to localize F-actin to the plasma membrane. - Highlights: • Insulin induces colocalization of MyoIIA and F-actin at the cortex in adipocytes. • MyoIIA is necessary but not sufficient to localize F-actin at the cell cortex. • MyoIIA-F-actin colocalization is regulated by calcium and calmodulin.

  13. Regulation of myosin IIA and filamentous actin during insulin-stimulated glucose uptake in 3T3-L1 adipocytes

    Insulin stimulated glucose uptake requires the colocalization of myosin IIA (MyoIIA) and the insulin-responsive glucose transporter 4 (GLUT4) at the plasma membrane for proper GLUT4 fusion. MyoIIA facilitates filamentous actin (F-actin) reorganization in various cell types. In adipocytes F-actin reorganization is required for insulin-stimulated glucose uptake. What is not known is whether MyoIIA interacts with F-actin to regulate insulin-induced GLUT4 fusion at the plasma membrane. To elucidate the relationship between MyoIIA and F-actin, we examined the colocalization of MyoIIA and F-actin at the plasma membrane upon insulin stimulation as well as the regulation of this interaction. Our findings demonstrated that MyoIIA and F-actin colocalized at the site of GLUT4 fusion with the plasma membrane upon insulin stimulation. Furthermore, inhibition of MyoII with blebbistatin impaired F-actin localization at the plasma membrane. Next we examined the regulatory role of calcium in MyoIIA-F-actin colocalization. Reduced calcium or calmodulin levels decreased colocalization of MyoIIA and F-actin at the plasma membrane. While calcium alone can translocate MyoIIA it did not stimulate F-actin accumulation at the plasma membrane. Taken together, we established that while MyoIIA activity is required for F-actin localization at the plasma membrane, it alone is insufficient to localize F-actin to the plasma membrane. - Highlights: • Insulin induces colocalization of MyoIIA and F-actin at the cortex in adipocytes. • MyoIIA is necessary but not sufficient to localize F-actin at the cell cortex. • MyoIIA-F-actin colocalization is regulated by calcium and calmodulin

  14. Mechanism of Actin Filament Nucleation by the Bacterial Effector VopL

    Yu, Bingke; Cheng, Hui-Chun; Brautigam, Chad A.; Tomchick, Diana R.; Rosen, Michael K.

    2011-01-01

    Vibrio parahaemolyticus protein L (VopL) is an actin nucleation factor that induces stress fibers when injected by bacteria into eukaryotic host cells. VopL contains three N-terminal Wiskott-Aldrich Homology 2 (WH2) motifs and a unique VopL C-terminal domain (VCD). We describe crystallographic and biochemical analyses of filament nucleation by VopL. The WH2 element of VopL does not nucleate on its own, and requires the VCD for activity. The VCD forms a U-shaped dimer in the crystal, which is ...

  15. Reconstitution of actin-based motility of Listeria and Shigella using pure proteins

    Loisel, Thomas P.; Boujemaa, Rajaa; Pantaloni, Dominique; Carlier, Marie-France

    1999-10-01

    Actin polymerization is essential for cell locomotion and is thought to generate the force responsible for cellular protrusions. The Arp2/3 complex is required to stimulate actin assembly at the leading edge in response to signalling. The bacteria Listeria and Shigella bypass the signalling pathway and harness the Arp2/3 complex to induce actin assembly and to propel themselves in living cells. However, the Arp2/3 complex alone is insufficient to promote movement. Here we have used pure components of the actin cytoskeleton to reconstitute sustained movement in Listeria and Shigella in vitro. Actin-based propulsion is driven by the free energy released by ATP hydrolysis linked to actin polymerization, and does not require myosin. In addition to actin and activated Arp2/3 complex, actin depolymerizing factor (ADF, or cofilin) and capping protein are also required for motility as they maintain a high steady-state level of G-actin, which controls the rate of unidirectional growth of actin filaments at the surface of the bacterium. The movement is more effective when profilin, α-actinin and VASP (for Listeria) are also included. These results have implications for our understanding of the mechanism of actin-based motility in cells.

  16. Nodularin Exposure Induces SOD1 Phosphorylation and Disrupts SOD1 Co-localization with Actin Filaments

    Kari E. Fladmark

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Apoptotic cell death is induced in primary hepatocytes by the Ser/Thr protein phosphatase inhibiting cyanobacterial toxin nodularin after only minutes of exposure. Nodularin-induced apoptosis involves a rapid development of reactive oxygen species (ROS, which can be delayed by the Ca2+/calmodulin protein kinase II inhibitor KN93. This apoptosis model provides us with a unique population of highly synchronized dying cells, making it possible to identify low abundant phosphoproteins participating in apoptosis signaling. Here, we show that nodularin induces phosphorylation and possibly also cysteine oxidation of the antioxidant Cu,Zn superoxide dismutase (SOD1, without altering enzymatic SOD1 activity. The observed post-translational modifications of SOD1 could be regulated by Ca2+/calmodulin protein kinase II. In untreated hepatocytes, a high concentration of SOD1 was found in the sub-membranous area, co-localized with the cortical actin cytoskeleton. In the early phase of nodularin exposure, SOD1 was found in high concentration in evenly distributed apoptotic buds. Nodularin induced a rapid reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton and, at the time of polarized budding, SOD1 and actin filaments no longer co-localized.

  17. Actin Filament Cables in Drosophila Nurse Cells Are Composed of Modules That Slide Passively Past One Another during Dumping

    Guild, Gregory M.; Connelly, Patricia S.; Shaw, Michael K.; Tilney, Lewis G.

    1997-01-01

    At a late stage in Drosophila oogenesis, nurse cells rapidly expel their cytoplasm into the oocyte via intracellular bridges by a process called nurse cell dumping. Before dumping, numerous cables composed of actin filaments appear in the cytoplasm and extend inward from the plasma membrane toward the nucleus. This actin cage prevents the nucleus, which becomes highly lobed, from physically blocking the intracellular bridges during dumping. Each cable is composed of a linear series of modules...

  18. Titin-Actin Interaction: PEVK-Actin-Based Viscosity in a Large Animal

    Charles S. Chung

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Titin exhibits an interaction between its PEVK segment and the actin filament resulting in viscosity, a speed dependent resistive force, which significantly influences diastolic filling in mice. While diastolic disease is clinically pervasive, humans express a more compliant titin (N2BA:N2B ratio ~0.5–1.0 than mice (N2BA:N2B ratio ~0.2. To examine PEVK-actin based viscosity in compliant titin-tissues, we used pig cardiac tissue that expresses titin isoforms similar to that in humans. Stretch-hold experiments were performed at speeds from 0.1 to 10 lengths/s from slack sarcomere lengths (SL to SL of 2.15 μm. Viscosity was calculated from the slope of stress-relaxation vs stretch speed. Recombinant PEVK was added to compete off native interactions and this found to reduce the slope by 35%, suggesting that PEVK-actin interactions are a strong contributor of viscosity. Frequency sweeps were performed at frequencies of 0.1–400 Hz and recombinant protein reduced viscous moduli by 40% at 2.15 μm and by 50% at 2.25 μm, suggesting a SL-dependent nature of viscosity that might prevent SL ``overshoot’’ at long diastolic SLs. This study is the first to show that viscosity is present at physiologic speeds in the pig and supports the physiologic relevance of PEVK-actin interactions in humans in both health and disease.

  19. Actin-based propulsion of spatially extended objects

    We propose a mathematical model of the actin-based propulsion of spatially extended obstacles. It starts from the properties of individual actin filaments and includes transient attachment to the obstacle, polymerization as well as cross-linking. Two particular geometries are discussed, which apply to the motion of protein-coated beads in a cell-like medium and the leading edge of a cell protrusion, respectively. The model gives rise to both steady and saltatory movement of beads and can explain the experimentally observed transitions of the dynamic regime with changing bead radius and protein surface density. Several spatiotemporal patterns are obtained with a soft obstacle under tension, including the experimentally observed spontaneous emergence of lateral traveling waves in crawling cells. Thus, we suggest a unifying mechanism for systems that are currently described by differential concepts.

  20. Saturable binding of the echinoderm microtubule-associated protein (EMAP) on microtubules, but not filamentous actin or vimentin filaments.

    Eichenmüller, B; Ahrens, D P; Li, Q; Suprenant, K A

    2001-11-01

    The echinoderm microtubule-associated protein (EMAP) is a 75-kDa, WD-repeat protein associated with the mitotic spindle apparatus. To understand EMAP's biological role, it is important to determine its affinity for microtubules (MTs) and other cytoskeletal components. To accomplish this goal, we utilized a low-cost, bubble-column bioreactor to express EMAP as a hexahistidine fusion (6his) protein in baculovirus-infected insect cells. After optimizing cell growth conditions, up to 30 mg of EMAP was obtained in the soluble cell lysate from a 1-liter culture. EMAP was purified to homogeneity in a two-step process that included immobilized metal-affinity chromatography (IMAC) and anion-exchange chromatography. In vitro binding studies on cytoskeletal components were performed with the 6his-EMAP. EMAP bound to MTs, but not actin or vimentin filaments, with an intrinsic dissociation constant of 0.18 microM and binding stoichiometry of 0.7 mol EMAP per mol tubulin heterodimer. In addition, we show that a strong MT binding domain resides in the 137 amino acid, NH(2)-terminus of EMAP and a weaker binding site in the WD-domain. Previous work has shown that the EMAP concentration in the sea urchin egg is over 4 microM. Together, these results show that there is sufficient EMAP in the egg to regulate the assembly of a large pool of maternally stored tubulin. PMID:11807937

  1. ARP2 and ARP3 are localized to sites of actin filament nucleation in tobacco BY-2 cells

    Fišerová, J.; Schwarzerová, K.; Petrášek, Jan; Opatrný, Z.

    2006-01-01

    Roč. 227, 2-4 (2006), s. 119-128. ISSN 0033-183X Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50380511 Keywords : Nicotiana tabacum * BY-2 cells * actin filament Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 1.333, year: 2006

  2. Model-based analysis of keratin intermediate filament assembly

    The cytoskeleton of epithelial cells consists of three types of filament systems: microtubules, actin filaments and intermediate filaments (IFs). Here, we took a closer look at type I and type II IF proteins, i.e. keratins. They are hallmark constituents of epithelial cells and are responsible for the generation of stiffness, the cellular response to mechanical stimuli and the integrity of entire cell layers. Thereby, keratin networks constitute an important instrument for cells to adapt to their environment. In particular, we applied models to characterize the assembly of keratin K8 and K18 into elongated filaments as a means for network formation. For this purpose, we measured the length of in vitro assembled keratin K8/K18 filaments by transmission electron microscopy at different time points. We evaluated the experimental data of the longitudinal annealing reaction using two models from polymer chemistry: the Schulz–Zimm model and the condensation polymerization model. In both scenarios one has to make assumptions about the reaction process. We compare how well the models fit the measured data and thus determine which assumptions fit best. Based on mathematical modelling of experimental filament assembly data we define basic mechanistic properties of the elongation reaction process. (paper)

  3. Nuclear actin filaments recruit cofilin and actin-related protein 3, and their formation is connected with a mitotic block

    Kalendová, Alžběta; Kalasová, Ilona; Yamazaki, S.; Uličná, Lívia; Harata, M.; Hozák, Pavel

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 142, č. 2 (2014), s. 139-152. ISSN 0948-6143 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP305/11/2232; GA MŠk LD12063; GA MŠk(CZ) ED1.1.00/02.0109 Institutional support: RVO:68378050 Keywords : nuclear actin * transcription * mitosis * actin-related protein 3 * cofilin Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 2.927, year: 2013

  4. Arabidopsis VILLIN2 and VILLIN3 Are Required for the Generation of Thick Actin Filament Bundles and for Directional Organ Growth[C][W

    van der Honing, Hannie S.; Kieft, Henk; Emons, Anne Mie C.; Ketelaar, Tijs

    2012-01-01

    In plant cells, actin filament bundles serve as tracks for myosin-dependent organelle movement and play a role in the organization of the cytoplasm. Although virtually all plant cells contain actin filament bundles, the role of the different actin-bundling proteins remains largely unknown. In this study, we investigated the role of the actin-bundling protein villin in Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana). We used Arabidopsis T-DNA insertion lines to generate a double mutant in which VILLIN2 (VLN2) and VLN3 transcripts are truncated. Leaves, stems, siliques, and roots of vln2 vln3 double mutant plants are twisted, which is caused by local differences in cell length. Microscopy analysis of the actin cytoskeleton showed that in these double mutant plants, thin actin filament bundles are more abundant while thick actin filament bundles are virtually absent. In contrast to full-length VLN3, truncated VLN3 lacking the headpiece region does not rescue the phenotype of the vln2 vln3 double mutant. Our results show that villin is involved in the generation of thick actin filament bundles in several cell types and suggest that these bundles are involved in the regulation of coordinated cell expansion. PMID:22209875

  5. Arabidopsis VILLIN2 and VILLIN3 are required for the generation of thick actin filament bundles and for directional organ growth.

    van der Honing, Hannie S; Kieft, Henk; Emons, Anne Mie C; Ketelaar, Tijs

    2012-03-01

    In plant cells, actin filament bundles serve as tracks for myosin-dependent organelle movement and play a role in the organization of the cytoplasm. Although virtually all plant cells contain actin filament bundles, the role of the different actin-bundling proteins remains largely unknown. In this study, we investigated the role of the actin-bundling protein villin in Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana). We used Arabidopsis T-DNA insertion lines to generate a double mutant in which VILLIN2 (VLN2) and VLN3 transcripts are truncated. Leaves, stems, siliques, and roots of vln2 vln3 double mutant plants are twisted, which is caused by local differences in cell length. Microscopy analysis of the actin cytoskeleton showed that in these double mutant plants, thin actin filament bundles are more abundant while thick actin filament bundles are virtually absent. In contrast to full-length VLN3, truncated VLN3 lacking the headpiece region does not rescue the phenotype of the vln2 vln3 double mutant. Our results show that villin is involved in the generation of thick actin filament bundles in several cell types and suggest that these bundles are involved in the regulation of coordinated cell expansion. PMID:22209875

  6. Single-molecule visualization of a formin-capping protein `decision complex' at the actin filament barbed end

    Bombardier, Jeffrey P.; Eskin, Julian A.; Jaiswal, Richa; Corrêa, Ivan R.; Xu, Ming-Qun; Goode, Bruce L.; Gelles, Jeff

    2015-11-01

    Precise control of actin filament length is essential to many cellular processes. Formins processively elongate filaments, whereas capping protein (CP) binds to barbed ends and arrests polymerization. While genetic and biochemical evidence has indicated that these two proteins function antagonistically, the mechanism underlying the antagonism has remained unresolved. Here we use multi-wavelength single-molecule fluorescence microscopy to observe the fully reversible formation of a long-lived `decision complex' in which a CP dimer and a dimer of the formin mDia1 simultaneously bind the barbed end. Further, mDia1 displaced from the barbed end by CP can randomly slide along the filament and later return to the barbed end to re-form the complex. Quantitative kinetic analysis reveals that the CP-mDia1 antagonism that we observe in vitro occurs through the decision complex. Our observations suggest new molecular mechanisms for the control of actin filament length and for the capture of filament barbed ends in cells.

  7. From filaments to function:The role of the plant actin cytoskeleton in pathogen perception, signaling and immunity

    Katie Porter; Brad Day

    2016-01-01

    The eukaryotic actin cytoskeleton is required for numerous cellular processes, including cell shape, develop-ment and movement, gene expression and signal transduc-tion, and response to biotic and abiotic stress. In recent years, research in both plants and animal systems have described a function for actin as the ideal surveillance platform, linking the function and activity of primary physiological processes to the immune system. In this review, we will highlight recent advances that have defined the regulation and breadth of function of the actin cytoskeleton as a network required for defense signaling following pathogen infection. Coupled with an overview of recent work demonstrating specific targeting of the plant actin cytoskeleton by a diversity of pathogens, including bacteria, fungi and viruses, we will highlight the importance of actin as a key signaling hub in plants, one that mediates surveillance of cellular homeostasis and the activa-tion of specific signaling responses following pathogen perception. B4ased on the studies highlighted herein, we propose a working model that posits changes in actin filament organization is in and of itself a highly specific signal, which induces, regulates and physically directs stimulus-specific signaling processes, most importantly, those associated with response to pathogens.

  8. FMNL2 drives actin-based protrusion and migration downstream of Cdc42

    Block, Jennifer; Breitsprecher, Dennis; Kühn, Sonja;

    2012-01-01

    -guanosine triphosphatase Cdc42. Abolition of myristoylation or Cdc42 binding interferes with proper FMNL2 activation, constituting an essential prerequisite for subcellular targeting. In vitro, C-terminal FMNL2 drives elongation rather than nucleation of actin filaments in the presence of profilin. In addition, filament...... establish that the FMNL subfamily member FMNL2 is a novel elongation factor of actin filaments that constitutes the first Cdc42 effector promoting cell migration and actin polymerization at the tips of lamellipodia....

  9. A tridimensional view of the organization of actin filaments in the central nervous system by use of fluorescent photooxidation.

    Capani, Francisco; Saraceno, Ezequiel; Boti, Valeria Romina; Aon-Bertolino, Laura; Fernández, Juan Carlos; Gato, Fernándo; Kruse, Maria Sol; Krause, Maria Sol; Giraldez, Lisandro; Ellisman, Mark H; Coirini, Héctor

    2008-04-01

    Cellular and subcellular organization and distribution of actin filaments have been studied with various techniques. The use of fluorescence photo-oxidation combined with phalloidin conjugates with eosin has allowed the examination of the precise cellular and subcellular location of F-actin. Correlative fluorescence light microscopy and transmission electron microscopy studies of F-actin distribution are facilitated with this method for morphological and physiological studies. Because phalloidin-eosin is smaller than other markers, this method allows the analysis of the three-dimensional location of F-actin with high-resolution light microscopy, three-d serial sections reconstructions, and electron tomography. The combination of selective staining and three-dimensional reconstructions provide a valuable tool for revealing aspects of the synaptic morphology that are not available when conventional electron microscopy is used. By applying this selective staining technique and three-dimensional imaging, we uncovered the structural organization of actin in the postsynaptic densities in physiological and pathological conditions. PMID:18669318

  10. A peek into tropomyosin binding and unfolding on the actin filament.

    Abhishek Singh

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Tropomyosin is a prototypical coiled coil along its length with subtle variations in structure that allow interactions with actin and other proteins. Actin binding globally stabilizes tropomyosin. Tropomyosin-actin interaction occurs periodically along the length of tropomyosin. However, it is not well understood how tropomyosin binds actin. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Tropomyosin's periodic binding sites make differential contributions to two components of actin binding, cooperativity and affinity, and can be classified as primary or secondary sites. We show through mutagenesis and analysis of recombinant striated muscle alpha-tropomyosins that primary actin binding sites have a destabilizing coiled-coil interface, typically alanine-rich, embedded within a non-interface recognition sequence. Introduction of an Ala cluster in place of the native, more stable interface in period 2 and/or period 3 sites (of seven increased the affinity or cooperativity of actin binding, analysed by cosedimentation and differential scanning calorimetry. Replacement of period 3 with period 5 sequence, an unstable region of known importance for cooperative actin binding, increased the cooperativity of binding. Introduction of the fluorescent probe, pyrene, near the mutation sites in periods 2 and 3 reported local instability, stabilization by actin binding, and local unfolding before or coincident with dissociation from actin (measured using light scattering, and chain dissociation (analyzed using circular dichroism. CONCLUSIONS: This, and previous work, suggests that regions of tropomyosin involved in binding actin have non-interface residues specific for interaction with actin and an unstable interface that is locally stabilized upon binding. The destabilized interface allows residues on the coiled-coil surface to obtain an optimal conformation for interaction with actin by increasing the number of local substates that the side chains can sample. We suggest

  11. A function for filamentous alpha-smooth muscle actin: Retardation of motility in human breast fibroblasts

    Rønnov-Jessen, Lone; Petersen, Ole William

    1996-01-01

    monoclonal antibody (mAb) 1A4, which recognizes specifically the NH2-terminal Ac-EEED sequence of alpha-sm actin, significantly increased the frequency of migrating cells over that obtained with an unrelated antibody or a mAb against beta-actin. Time- lapse video microscopy revealed migratory rates of 4...

  12. EhCoactosin stabilizes actin filaments in the protist parasite Entamoeba histolytica.

    Nitesh Kumar

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Entamoeba histolytica is a protist parasite that is the causative agent of amoebiasis, and is a highly motile organism. The motility is essential for its survival and pathogenesis, and a dynamic actin cytoskeleton is required for this process. EhCoactosin, an actin-binding protein of the ADF/cofilin family, participates in actin dynamics, and here we report our studies of this protein using both structural and functional approaches. The X-ray crystal structure of EhCoactosin resembles that of human coactosin-like protein, with major differences in the distribution of surface charges and the orientation of terminal regions. According to in vitro binding assays, full-length EhCoactosin binds both F- and G-actin. Instead of acting to depolymerize or severe F-actin, EhCoactosin directly stabilizes the polymer. When EhCoactosin was visualized in E. histolytica cells using either confocal imaging or total internal reflectance microscopy, it was found to colocalize with F-actin at phagocytic cups. Over-expression of this protein stabilized F-actin and inhibited the phagocytic process. EhCoactosin appears to be an unusual type of coactosin involved in E. histolytica actin dynamics.

  13. Actin filaments at the leading edge of cancer cells are characterized by a high mobile fraction and turnover regulation by profilin I.

    Gisela Lorente

    Full Text Available Cellular motility is the basis for cancer cell invasion and metastasis. In the case of breast cancer, the most common type of cancer among women, metastasis represents the most devastating stage of the disease. The central role of cellular motility in cancer development emphasizes the importance of understanding the specific mechanisms involved in this process. In this context, tumor development and metastasis would be the consequence of a loss or defect of the mechanisms that control cytoskeletal remodeling. Profilin I belongs to a family of small actin binding proteins that are thought to assist in actin filament elongation at the leading edge of migrating cells. Traditionally, Profilin I has been considered to be an essential control element for actin polymerization and cell migration. Expression of Profilin I is down-regulated in breast and various other cancer cells. In MDA-MB-231 cells, a breast cancer cell line, further inhibition of Profilin I expression promotes hypermotility and metastatic spread, a finding that contrasts with the proposed role of Profilin in enhancing polymerization. In this report, we have taken advantage of the fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP of GFP-actin to quantify and compare actin dynamics at the leading edge level in both cancer and non-cancer cell models. Our results suggest that (i a high level of actin dynamics (i.e., a large mobile fraction of actin filaments and a fast turnover is a common characteristic of some cancer cells; (ii actin polymerization shows a high degree of independence from the presence of extracellular growth factors; and (iii our results also corroborate the role of Profilin I in regulating actin polymerization, as raising the intracellular levels of Profilin I decreased the mobile fraction ratio of actin filaments and slowed their polymerization rate; furthermore, increased Profilin levels also led to reduced individual cell velocity and directionality.

  14. Observation of actin filaments in Leydig cells with a contact-type soft x-ray microscope with laser plasma x-ray source

    Actin filaments in Laydig cells from mouse testes have been observed with a contract-type soft x-ray microscope with laser plasma x-ray source. The Leydig cells were fixed with paraformaldehyde, stained with Phalloidin, and observed with a confocal laser microscope prior to the observation with x-ray microscope. Obtained images by both of the confocal laser microscopy and the x-ray microscopy were directly compared and revealed that not only position of actin filaments but also the shapes can be identified each other. The actin filaments in the x-ray images were clearly recognized and their structures were obtained in more detail compared to those in the confocal laser microscope images. (author)

  15. Regulation of gelsolin to plant actin filaments and its distribution in pollen

    TAO; Zhihua; (陶志华); REN; Haiyun; (任海云)

    2003-01-01

    The effect of plasma gelsolin on plant microfilaments and its localization in plant cells were investigated. The results by using ultracentrifugation and electron microscopy showed that plant microfilaments could be severed into shorter fragments by gelsolin in a Ca2+-dependent manner. By measuring the binding ability of plasma gelsolin to pollen actin using the method of immunoprecipitation, it was shown that pollen actin could bind gelsolin at a ratio of 2.0±0.21 in the presence of Ca2+. Addition of EGTA could disassociate the actin-gelsolin complexes, reducing the ratio to 1.2±0.23, and the addition of PIP2 could further reduce the ratio to 0.8±0.1. The results indicate that plant actin has similar binding properties with plasma gelsolin as that of animal actin. By Western blotting we identified the existence of gelsolin in lily pollen. The results of immunolo-calization of gelsolin in pollen and pollen tube showed that gelsolin was mainly localized at the germinal furrow in pollen grains and at the cytoplasm in pollen tube, especially in the tip region.

  16. Spontaneous polarization in an interfacial growth model for actin filament networks with a rigorous mechanochemical coupling.

    John, Karin; Caillerie, Denis; Misbah, Chaouqi

    2014-11-01

    Many processes in eukaryotic cells, including cell motility, rely on the growth of branched actin networks from surfaces. Despite its central role the mechanochemical coupling mechanisms that guide the growth process are poorly understood, and a general continuum description combining growth and mechanics is lacking. We develop a theory that bridges the gap between mesoscale and continuum limit and propose a general framework providing the evolution law of actin networks growing under stress. This formulation opens an area for the systematic study of actin dynamics in arbitrary geometries. Our framework predicts a morphological instability of actin growth on a rigid sphere, leading to a spontaneous polarization of the network with a mode selection corresponding to a comet, as reported experimentally. We show that the mechanics of the contact between the network and the surface plays a crucial role, in that it determines directly the existence of the instability. We extract scaling laws relating growth dynamics and network properties offering basic perspectives for new experiments on growing actin networks. PMID:25493815

  17. Determination of the persistence length of actin filaments on microcontact printed myosin patterns

    Hajne, Joanna; Hanson, Kristi L.; van Zalinge, Harm; Nicolau, Dan V.; Nicolau, Dan V.

    2015-03-01

    Protein molecular motors, which convert chemical energy into kinetic energy, are prime candidates for use in nanodevice in which active transport is required. To be able to design these devices it is essential that the properties of the cytoskeletal filaments propelled by the molecular motors are well established. Here we used micro-contact printed BSA to limit the amount of HMM that can adsorb creating a tightly confined pathway for the filaments to travel. Both the image and statistical analysis of the movement of the filaments through these structures have been used to new insights into the motility behaviour of actomyosin on topographically homogenous, but motor-heterogeneous planar systems. It will be shown that it is possible to determine the persistence length of the filaments and that it is related to the amount of locally adsorbed HMM. This provides a basis that can be used to optimize the design of future nanodevices incorporating the actomyosin system for the active transport.

  18. AtFH1 formin mutation affects actin filament and microtubule dynamics in Arabidopsis thaliana

    Rosero, A.; Žárský, Viktor; Cvrčková, F.

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 64, č. 2 (2013), s. 585-597. ISSN 0022-0957 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP305/10/0433 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50380511 Keywords : Actin * Arabidopsis * At5g25500 Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 5.794, year: 2013

  19. A36-dependent actin filament nucleation promotes release of vaccinia virus.

    Jacquelyn Horsington

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Cell-to-cell transmission of vaccinia virus can be mediated by enveloped virions that remain attached to the outer surface of the cell or those released into the medium. During egress, the outer membrane of the double-enveloped virus fuses with the plasma membrane leaving extracellular virus attached to the cell surface via viral envelope proteins. Here we report that F-actin nucleation by the viral protein A36 promotes the disengagement of virus attachment and release of enveloped virus. Cells infected with the A36(YdF virus, which has mutations at two critical tyrosine residues abrogating localised actin nucleation, displayed a 10-fold reduction in virus release. We examined A36(YdF infected cells by transmission electron microscopy and observed that during release, virus appeared trapped in small invaginations at the plasma membrane. To further characterise the mechanism by which actin nucleation drives the dissociation of enveloped virus from the cell surface, we examined recombinant viruses by super-resolution microscopy. Fluorescently-tagged A36 was visualised at sub-viral resolution to image cell-virus attachment in mutant and parental backgrounds. We confirmed that A36(YdF extracellular virus remained closely associated to the plasma membrane in small membrane pits. Virus-induced actin nucleation reduced the extent of association, thereby promoting the untethering of virus from the cell surface. Virus release can be enhanced via a point mutation in the luminal region of B5 (P189S, another virus envelope protein. We found that the B5(P189S mutation led to reduced contact between extracellular virus and the host membrane during release, even in the absence of virus-induced actin nucleation. Our results posit that during release virus is tightly tethered to the host cell through interactions mediated by viral envelope proteins. Untethering of virus into the surrounding extracellular space requires these interactions be relieved, either

  20. Engagement of CD81 induces ezrin tyrosine phosphorylation and its cellular redistribution with filamentous actin

    Coffey, Greg P.; Rajapaksa, Ranjani; Liu, Raymond; Sharpe, Orr; Kuo, Chiung-Chi; Wald Krauss, Sharon; Sagi, Yael; Davis, R. Eric; Staudt, Louis M.; Sharman, Jeff P.; Robinson, William H.; Levy, Shoshana

    2009-06-09

    CD81 is a tetraspanin family member involved in diverse cellular interactions in the immune and nervous systems and in cell fusion events. However, the mechanism of action of CD81 and of other tetraspanins has not been defined. We reasoned that identifying signaling molecules downstream of CD81 would provide mechanistic clues. We engaged CD81 on the surface of Blymphocytes and identified the induced tyrosine-phosphorylated proteins by mass spectrometry. This analysis showed that the most prominent tyrosine phosphorylated protein was ezrin, an actin binding protein and a member of the ezrin-radixin-moesin family. We also found that CD81 engagement induces spleen tyrosine kinase (Syk) and that Syk was involved in tyrosine phosphorylation of ezrin. Ezrin colocalized with CD81 and F-actin upon stimulation and this association was disrupted when Syk activation was blocked. Taken together, these studies suggest a model in which CD81 interfaces between the plasma membrane and the cytoskeleton by activating Syk, mobilizing ezrin, and recruiting F-actin to facilitate cytoskeletal reorganization and cell signaling. This may be a mechanism explaining the pleiotropic effects induced in response to stimulating cells by anti-CD81 antibodies or by the hepatitis C virus, which uses this molecule as its key receptor.

  1. Role of the C-terminal Extension of Formin 2 in Its Activation by Spire Protein and Processive Assembly of Actin Filaments.

    Montaville, Pierre; Kühn, Sonja; Compper, Christel; Carlier, Marie-France

    2016-02-12

    Formin 2 (Fmn2), a member of the FMN family of formins, plays an important role in early development. This formin cooperates with profilin and Spire, a WASP homology domain 2 (WH2) repeat protein, to stimulate assembly of a dynamic cytoplasmic actin meshwork that facilitates translocation of the meiotic spindle in asymmetric division of mouse oocytes. The kinase-like non-catalytic domain (KIND) of Spire directly interacts with the C-terminal extension of the formin homology domain 2 (FH2) domain of Fmn2, called FSI. This direct interaction is required for the synergy between the two proteins in actin assembly. We have recently demonstrated how Spire, which caps barbed ends via its WH2 domains, activates Fmn2. Fmn2 by itself associates very poorly to filament barbed ends but is rapidly recruited to Spire-capped barbed ends via the KIND domain, and it subsequently displaces Spire from the barbed end to elicit rapid processive assembly from profilin·actin. Here, we address the mechanism by which Spire and Fmn2 compete at barbed ends and the role of FSI in orchestrating this competition as well as in the processivity of Fmn2. We have combined microcalorimetric, fluorescence, and hydrodynamic binding assays, as well as bulk solution and single filament measurements of actin assembly, to show that removal of FSI converts Fmn2 into a Capping Protein. This activity is mimicked by association of KIND to Fmn2. In addition, FSI binds actin at filament barbed ends as a weak capper and plays a role in displacing the WH2 domains of Spire from actin, thus allowing the association of actin-binding regions of FH2 to the barbed end. PMID:26668326

  2. Evolution of the Cp-Actin-based Motility System of Chloroplasts in Green Plants.

    Suetsugu, Noriyuki; Wada, Masamitsu

    2016-01-01

    During the course of green plant evolution, numerous light responses have arisen that optimize their growth under fluctuating light conditions. The blue light receptor phototropin mediates several photomovement responses at the tissue, cellular and organelle levels. Chloroplast photorelocation movement is one such photomovement response, and is found not only in most green plants, but also in some red algae and photosynthetic stramenopiles. In general, chloroplasts move toward weak light to maximally capture photosynthetically active radiation (the chloroplast accumulation response), and they move away from strong light to avoid photodamage (the avoidance response). In land plants, chloroplast movement is dependent on specialized actin filaments, chloroplast-actin filaments (cp-actin filaments). Through molecular genetic analysis using Arabidopsis thaliana, many molecular factors that regulate chloroplast photorelocation were identified. In this Perspective, we discuss the evolutionary history of the molecular mechanism for chloroplast photorelocation movement in green plants in view of cp-actin filaments. PMID:27200035

  3. Steric effects induce geometric remodeling of actin bundles in filopodia

    Dobramysl, Ulrich; Erban, Radek

    2016-01-01

    Filopodia are ubiquitous fingerlike protrusions, spawned by many eukaryotic cells, to probe and interact with their environments. Polymerization dynamics of actin filaments, comprising the structural core of filopodia, largely determine their instantaneous lengths and overall lifetimes. The polymerization reactions at the filopodial tip require transport of G-actin, which enter the filopodial tube from the filopodial base and diffuse toward the filament barbed ends near the tip. Actin filaments are mechanically coupled into a tight bundle by cross-linker proteins. Interestingly, many of these proteins are relatively short, restricting the free diffusion of cytosolic G-actin throughout the bundle and, in particular, its penetration into the bundle core. To investigate the effect of steric restrictions on G-actin diffusion by the porous structure of filopodial actin filament bundle, we used a particle-based stochastic simulation approach. We discovered that excluded volume interactions result in partial and the...

  4. Addition of Phenylboronic Acid to Malus domestica Pollen Tubes Alters Calcium Dynamics, Disrupts Actin Filaments and Affects Cell Wall Architecture

    Fang, Kefeng; Gao, Sai; Zhang, Weiwei; Xing, Yu; Cao, Qingqin; Qin, Ling

    2016-01-01

    A key role of boron in plants is to cross-link the cell wall pectic polysaccharide rhamnogalacturonan-II (RG-II) through borate diester linkages. Phenylboronic acid (PBA) can form the same reversible ester bonds but cannot cross-link two molecules, so can be used as an antagonist to study the function of boron. This study aimed to evaluate the effect of PBA on apple (Malus domestica) pollen tube growth and the underlying regulatory mechanism. We observed that PBA caused an inhibition of pollen germination, tube growth and led to pollen tube morphological abnormalities. Fluorescent labeling, coupled with a scanning ion-selective electrode technique, revealed that PBA induced an increase in extracellular Ca2+ influx, thereby elevating the cytosolic Ca2+ concentration [Ca2+]c and disrupting the [Ca2+]c gradient, which is critical for pollen tube growth. Moreover the organization of actin filaments was severely perturbed by the PBA treatment. Immunolocalization studies and fluorescent labeling, together with Fourier-transform infrared analysis (FTIR) suggested that PBA caused an increase in the abundance of callose, de-esterified pectins and arabinogalactan proteins (AGPs) at the tip. However, it had no effect on the deposition of the wall polymers cellulose. These effects are similar to those of boron deficiency in roots and other organs, indicating that PBA can induce boron deficiency symptoms. The results provide new insights into the roles of boron in pollen tube development, which likely include regulating [Ca2+]c and the formation of the actin cytoskeleton, in addition to the synthesis and assembly of cell wall components. PMID:26886907

  5. In silico reconstitution of actin-based symmetry breaking and motility.

    Mark J Dayel

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Eukaryotic cells assemble viscoelastic networks of crosslinked actin filaments to control their shape, mechanical properties, and motility. One important class of actin network is nucleated by the Arp2/3 complex and drives both membrane protrusion at the leading edge of motile cells and intracellular motility of pathogens such as Listeria monocytogenes. These networks can be reconstituted in vitro from purified components to drive the motility of spherical micron-sized beads. An Elastic Gel model has been successful in explaining how these networks break symmetry, but how they produce directed motile force has been less clear. We have combined numerical simulations with in vitro experiments to reconstitute the behavior of these motile actin networks in silico using an Accumulative Particle-Spring (APS model that builds on the Elastic Gel model, and demonstrates simple intuitive mechanisms for both symmetry breaking and sustained motility. The APS model explains observed transitions between smooth and pulsatile motion as well as subtle variations in network architecture caused by differences in geometry and conditions. Our findings also explain sideways symmetry breaking and motility of elongated beads, and show that elastic recoil, though important for symmetry breaking and pulsatile motion, is not necessary for smooth directional motility. The APS model demonstrates how a small number of viscoelastic network parameters and construction rules suffice to recapture the complex behavior of motile actin networks. The fact that the model not only mirrors our in vitro observations, but also makes novel predictions that we confirm by experiment, suggests that the model captures much of the essence of actin-based motility in this system.

  6. Regulation of water flow by actin-binding protein-induced actin gelatin.

    Ito, T.; Suzuki, A.; Stossel, T. P.

    1992-01-01

    Actin filaments inhibit osmotically driven water flow (Ito, T., K.S. Zaner, and T.P. Stossel. 1987. Biophys. J. 51: 745-753). Here we show that the actin gelation protein, actin-binding protein (ABP), impedes both osmotic shrinkage and swelling of an actin filament solution and reduces markedly the concentration of actin filaments required for this inhibition. These effects depend on actin filament immobilization, because the ABP concentration that causes initial impairment of water flow by a...

  7. Course 6: Physics of Composite Cell Membrane and Actin Based Cytoskeleton

    Sackmann, E.; Bausch, A. R.; Vonna, L.

    1 Architecture of composite cell membranes 1.1 The lipid/protein bilayer is a multicomponent smectic phase with mosaic like architecture 1.2 The spectrin/actin cytoskeleton as hyperelastic cell stabilizer 1.3 The actin cortex: Architecture and function 2 Physics of the actin based cytoskeleton 2.1 Actin is a living semiflexible polymer 2.2 Actin network as viscoelastic body 2.3 Correlation between macroscopic viscoelasticity and molecular 3 Heterogeneous actin gels in cells and biological function 3.1 Manipulation of actin gels 3.2 Control of organization and function of actin cortex by cell signalling 4 Micromechanics and microrheometry of cells 5 Activation of endothelial cells: On the possibility of formation of stress fibers as phase transition of actin-network triggered by cell signalling pathways 6 On cells as adaptive viscoplastic bodies 7 Controll of cellular protrusions controlled by actin/myosin cortex

  8. Filament wound data base development, revision 1

    Sharp, R. Scott; Braddock, William F.

    1985-01-01

    The objective was to update the present Space Shuttle Solid Rocket Booster (SRB) baseline reentry aerodynamic data base and to develop a new reentry data base for the filament wound case SRB along with individual protuberance increments. Lockheed's procedures for performing these tasks are discussed. Free fall of the SRBs after separation from the Space Shuttle Launch Vehicle is completely uncontrolled. However, the SRBs must decelerate to a velocity and attitude that is suitable for parachute deployment. To determine the SRB reentry trajectory parameters, including the rate of deceleration and attitude history during free-fall, engineers at Marshall Space Flight Center are using a six-degree-of-freedom computer program to predict dynamic behavior. Static stability aerodynamic coefficients are part of the information required for input into this computer program. Lockheed analyzed the existing reentry aerodynamic data tape (Data Tape 5) for the current steel case SRB. This analysis resulted in the development of Data Tape 7.

  9. Actin-dependent mechanisms in AMPA receptor trafficking

    Jonathan G Hanley

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available The precise regulation of AMPA receptor (AMPAR number and subtype at the synapse is crucial for the regulation of excitatory neurotransmission, synaptic plasticity and the consequent formation of appropriate neural circuits during learning and memory. AMPAR trafficking involves the dynamic processes of exocytosis, endocytosis and endosomal recycling, all of which involve the actin cytoskeleton. The actin cytoskeleton is highly dynamic and highly regulated by an abundance of actin-binding proteins and upstream signalling pathways that modulate actin polymerization and depolymerisation. Actin dynamics generate forces that manipulate membranes in the process of vesicle biogenesis, and also for propelling vesicles through the cytoplasm to reach their destination. In addition, trafficking mechanisms exploit more stable aspects of the actin cytoskeleton by using actin-based motor proteins to traffic vesicular cargo along actin filaments. Numerous studies have shown that actin dynamics are critical for AMPAR localization and function. The identification of actin-binding proteins that physically interact with AMPAR subunits, and research into their mode of action is starting to shed light on the mechanisms involved. Such proteins either regulate actin dynamics to modulate mechanical forces exerted on AMPAR-containing membranes, or associate with actin filaments to target or transport AMPAR-containing vesicles to specific subcellular regions. In addition, actin-regulatory proteins that do not physically interact with AMPARs may influence AMPAR trafficking by regulating the local actin environment in the dendritic spine.

  10. AQP2 is necessary for vasopressin- and forskolin-mediated filamentous actin depolymerization in renal epithelial cells

    Naofumi Yui

    2012-02-01

    Remodeling of the actin cytoskeleton is required for vasopressin (VP-induced aquaporin 2 (AQP2 trafficking. Here, we asked whether VP and forskolin (FK-mediated F-actin depolymerization depends on AQP2 expression. Using various MDCK and LLC-PK1 cell lines with different AQP2 expression levels, we performed F-actin quantification and immunofluorescence staining after VP/FK treatment. In MDCK cells, in which AQP2 is delivered apically, VP/FK mediated F-actin depolymerization was significantly correlated with AQP2 expression levels. A decrease of apical membrane associated F-actin was observed upon VP/FK treatment in AQP2 transfected, but not in untransfected cells. There was no change in basolateral actin staining under these conditions. In LLC-PK1 cells, which deliver AQP2 basolaterally, a significant VP/FK mediated decrease in F-actin was also detected only in AQP2 transfected cells. This depolymerization response to VP/FK was significantly reduced by siRNA knockdown of AQP2. By immunofluorescence, an inverse relationship between plasma membrane AQP2 and membrane-associated F-actin was observed after VP/FK treatment again only in AQP2 transfected cells. This is the first report showing that VP/FK mediated F-actin depolymerization is dependent on AQP2 protein expression in renal epithelial cells, and that this is not dependent on the polarity of AQP2 membrane insertion.

  11. Cofilin-induced cooperative conformational changes of actin subunits revealed using cofilin-actin fusion protein

    Umeki, Nobuhisa; Hirose, Keiko; Uyeda, Taro Q. P.

    2016-01-01

    To investigate cooperative conformational changes of actin filaments induced by cofilin binding, we engineered a fusion protein made of Dictyostelium cofilin and actin. The filaments of the fusion protein were functionally similar to actin filaments bound with cofilin in that they did not bind rhodamine-phalloidin, had quenched fluorescence of pyrene attached to Cys374 and showed enhanced susceptibility of the DNase loop to cleavage by subtilisin. Quantitative analyses of copolymers made of different ratios of the fusion protein and control actin further demonstrated that the fusion protein affects the structure of multiple neighboring actin subunits in copolymers. Based on these and other recent related studies, we propose a mechanism by which conformational changes induced by cofilin binding is propagated unidirectionally to the pointed ends of the filaments, and cofilin clusters grow unidirectionally to the pointed ends following this path. Interestingly, the fusion protein was unable to copolymerize with control actin at pH 6.5 and low ionic strength, suggesting that the structural difference between the actin moiety in the fusion protein and control actin is pH-sensitive. PMID:26842224

  12. Chondramides, novel cyclodepsipeptides from myxobacteria, influence cell development and induce actin filament polymerization in the green alga Micrasterias.

    Holzinger, A; Lütz-Meindl, U

    2001-02-01

    The effects of chondramides A-D, new actin targeting cyclodepsipeptides from the myxobacterium Chondromyces crocatus, are probed on the unicellular green alga Micrasterias denticulata, a model organism for studies on cytomorphogenesis. All four chondramides readily enter the cells and cause severe shape malformations when applied during growth. However, the four derivatives have different lowest effective concentrations. Chondramide A: 20 microM, chondramide B: 15 microM, chondramide C: 5 microM chondramide D: 10 microM. At the ultrastructural level, chondramide C, the most effective drug, causes the appearance of abnormal, dense F-actin bundles, and a substantial increase in ER, which covers large parts of the developing semicell. Also the secondary cell wall is malformed by the drug. When chondramide C effects are investigated by means of indirect immunofluorescence, alterations of the F-actin system are also visible. Instead of the cortical F-actin network of untreated controls, distinct parts of the cell are covered by abundant F-actin aggregations. Phalloidin staining of chondramide C treated cells results in a decreased fluorescence in a time-dependent manner due to binding competitions between these drugs. F-actin polymerizing and bundling capacities of chondramides A-D are presented in Micrasterias for the first time, and may in future make this substances a useful tool for cell biological research. PMID:11169761

  13. Actin based processes that could determine the cytoplasmic architecture of plant cells

    Honing; Emons, A.M.C.; Ketelaar, M.J.

    2007-01-01

    Actin polymerisation can generate forces that are necessary for cell movement, such as the propulsion of a class of bacteria, including Listeria, and the protrusion of migrating animal cells. Force generation by the actin cytoskeleton in plant cells has not been studied. One process in plant cells that is likely to depend on actin-based force generation is the organisation of the cytoplasm. We compare the function of actin binding proteins of three well-studied mammalian models that depend on...

  14. The 46/50 kDa phosphoprotein VASP purified from human platelets is a novel protein associated with actin filaments and focal contacts.

    Reinhard, M; Halbrügge, M; Scheer, U; Wiegand, C; Jockusch, B M; Walter, U

    1992-01-01

    Vasoactive agents which elevate either cGMP or cAMP inhibit platelet activation by pathways sharing at least one component, the 46/50 kDa vasodilator-stimulated phosphoprotein (VASP). VASP is stoichiometrically phosphorylated by both cGMP-dependent and cAMP-dependent protein kinases in intact human platelets, and its phosphorylation correlates very well with platelet inhibition caused by cGMP- and cAMP-elevating agents. Here we report that in human platelets spread on glass, VASP is associated predominantly with the distal parts of radial microfilament bundles and with microfilaments outlining the periphery, whereas less VASP is associated with a central microfilamentous ring. VASP is also detectable in a variety of different cell types including fibroblasts and epithelial cells. In fibroblasts, VASP is concentrated at focal contact areas, along microfilament bundles (stress fibres) in a punctate pattern, in the periphery of protruding lamellae, and is phosphorylated by cGMP- and cAMP-dependent protein kinases in response to appropriate stimuli. Evidence for the direct binding of VASP to F-actin is also presented. The data demonstrate that VASP is a novel phosphoprotein associated with actin filaments and focal contact areas, i.e. transmembrane junctions between microfilaments and the extracellular matrix. Images PMID:1318192

  15. Cucurbitacin covalent bonding to cysteine thiols: the filamentous-actin severing protein Cofilin1 as an exemplary target

    Gabrielsen, M.; Schuldt, M.; Munro, J; Borucka, D.; Cameron, J.; Baugh, M.; Mleczak, A; Lilla, S.; Morrice, N.; Olson, M.F.

    2013-01-01

    Background: Cucurbitacins are a class of triterpenoid natural compounds with potent bioactivities that led to their use as traditional remedies, and which continue to attract considerable attention as chemical biology tools and potential therapeutics. One obvious target is the actin-cytoskeleton; treatment with cucurbitacins results in cytoskeletal rearrangements that impact upon motility and cell morphology. Findings: Cucurbitacin reacted with protein cysteine thiols as well as dithiothr...

  16. Intermediate filament proteins and actin isoforms as markers for soft tissue tumor differentiation and origin. II. Rhabdomyosarcomas.

    Skalli, O.; Gabbiani, G; Babaï, F.; Seemayer, T. A.; Pizzolato, G.; Schürch, W.

    1988-01-01

    A series of 15 rhabdomyosarcomas was examined by light microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2D-GE) and indirect immunofluorescence, the latter using monoclonal or affinity-purified polyclonal antibodies to desmin, vimentin, alpha-smooth muscle and alpha-sarcomeric (alpha-sr) actins. By light microscopy, the authors diagnosed 1 botrioid, 1 alveolar, and 7 embryonal rhabdomyosarcomas, 4 pleomorphic spindle cell sarcomas, and 2 spindle cell sarcomas,...

  17. Intermediate filament proteins and actin isoforms as markers for soft tissue tumor differentiation and origin. I. Smooth muscle tumors.

    Schürch, W.; Skalli, O.; Seemayer, T. A.; Gabbiani, G.

    1987-01-01

    A series of 3 benign and 10 malignant smooth muscle (SM) neoplasms and of 2 malignant fibrous histiocytomas was examined by light microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2D-GE) and indirect immunofluorescence, using polyclonal monospecific or monoclonal antibodies to desmin, vimentin, cytokeratin, alpha-SM and alpha-sarcomeric (alpha-SR) actins. Benign neoplasms displayed typical light-microscopic features of SM, whereas leiomyosarcomas demonstrated ...

  18. Filamentous fungal-specific septin AspE is phosphorylated in vivo and interacts with actin, tubulin and other septins in the human pathogen Aspergillus fumigatus

    Juvvadi, Praveen Rao; Belina, Detti [Division of Pediatric Infectious Diseases, Department of Pediatrics, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC (United States); Soderblom, Erik J.; Moseley, M. Arthur [Duke Proteomics Core Facility, Institute for Genome Sciences and Policy, Duke University, Durham, NC (United States); Steinbach, William J., E-mail: bill.steinbach@duke.edu [Division of Pediatric Infectious Diseases, Department of Pediatrics, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC (United States); Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC (United States)

    2013-02-15

    Highlights: ► In vivo interactions of the novel septin AspE were identified by GFP-Trap® affinity purification. ► Septins AspA, AspB, AspC and AspD interacted with AspE in vivo. ► Actin and tubulin interacted with AspE in vivo. ► AspE is phosphorylated at six serine residues in vivo. -- Abstract: We previously analyzed the differential localization patterns of five septins (AspA–E), including a filamentous fungal-specific septin, AspE, in the human pathogen Aspergillus fumigatus. Here we utilized the A. fumigatus strain expressing an AspE–EGFP fusion protein and show that this novel septin with a tubular localization pattern in hyphae is phosphorylated in vivo and interacts with the other septins, AspA, AspB, AspC and AspD. The other major proteins interacting with AspE included the cytoskeletal proteins, actin and tubulin, which may be involved in the organization and transport of the septins. This is the first report analyzing the phosphorylation of AspE and localizing the sites of phosphorylation, and opens opportunities for further analysis on the role of post-translational modifications in the assembly and organization of A. fumigatus septins. This study also describes the previously unknown interaction of AspE with the actin-microtubule network. Furthermore, the novel GFP-Trap® affinity purification method used here complements widely-used GFP localization studies in fungal systems.

  19. Filamentous fungal-specific septin AspE is phosphorylated in vivo and interacts with actin, tubulin and other septins in the human pathogen Aspergillus fumigatus

    Highlights: ► In vivo interactions of the novel septin AspE were identified by GFP-Trap® affinity purification. ► Septins AspA, AspB, AspC and AspD interacted with AspE in vivo. ► Actin and tubulin interacted with AspE in vivo. ► AspE is phosphorylated at six serine residues in vivo. -- Abstract: We previously analyzed the differential localization patterns of five septins (AspA–E), including a filamentous fungal-specific septin, AspE, in the human pathogen Aspergillus fumigatus. Here we utilized the A. fumigatus strain expressing an AspE–EGFP fusion protein and show that this novel septin with a tubular localization pattern in hyphae is phosphorylated in vivo and interacts with the other septins, AspA, AspB, AspC and AspD. The other major proteins interacting with AspE included the cytoskeletal proteins, actin and tubulin, which may be involved in the organization and transport of the septins. This is the first report analyzing the phosphorylation of AspE and localizing the sites of phosphorylation, and opens opportunities for further analysis on the role of post-translational modifications in the assembly and organization of A. fumigatus septins. This study also describes the previously unknown interaction of AspE with the actin-microtubule network. Furthermore, the novel GFP-Trap® affinity purification method used here complements widely-used GFP localization studies in fungal systems

  20. Forces generated during actin-based propulsion: A direct measurement by micromanipulation

    Marcy, Yann; Prost, Jacques; Carlier, Marie-France; Sykes, Cécile

    2004-01-01

    Dynamic actin networks generate forces for numerous types of movements such as lamellipodia protrusion or the motion of endocytic vesicles. The actin-based propulsive movement of Listeria monocytogenes or of functionalized microspheres have been extensively used as model systems to identify the biochemical components that are necessary for actin-based motility. However, quantitative force measurements are required to elucidate the mechanism of force generation, which is still under debate. To...

  1. Actin-binding proteins from Burkholderia mallei and Burkholderia thailandensis can functionally compensate for the actin-based motility defect of a Burkholderia pseudomallei bimA mutant

    Stevens, J. M.; Ulrich, R L; Taylor, L A; Wood, M W; DeShazer, D; M.P. Stevens; Galyov, E. E.

    2005-01-01

    Recently we identified a bacterial factor (BimA) required for actin-based motility of Burkholderia pseudomallei. Here we report that Burkholderia mallei and Burkholderia thailandensis are capable of actin-based motility in J774.2 cells and that BimA homologs of these bacteria can restore the actin-based motility defect of a B. pseudomallei bimA mutant. While the BimA homologs differ in their amino-terminal sequence, they interact directly with actin in vitro and vary in their ability to bind ...

  2. Actin-Binding Proteins from Burkholderia mallei and Burkholderia thailandensis Can Functionally Compensate for the Actin-Based Motility Defect of a Burkholderia pseudomallei bimA Mutant

    Stevens, Joanne M; Ulrich, Ricky L.; Taylor, Lowrie A.; Wood, Michael W.; DeShazer, David; Stevens, Mark P.; Galyov, Edouard E.

    2005-01-01

    Recently we identified a bacterial factor (BimA) required for actin-based motility of Burkholderia pseudomallei. Here we report that Burkholderia mallei and Burkholderia thailandensis are capable of actin-based motility in J774.2 cells and that BimA homologs of these bacteria can restore the actin-based motility defect of a B. pseudomallei bimA mutant. While the BimA homologs differ in their amino-terminal sequence, they interact directly with actin in vitro and vary in their ability to bind ...

  3. The Actin Binding Protein Adseverin Regulates Osteoclastogenesis

    Hassanpour, Siavash; Jiang, Hongwei; Wang, Yongqiang; Kuiper, Johannes W. P.; Glogauer, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Adseverin (Ads), a member of the Gelsolin superfamily of actin binding proteins, regulates the actin cytoskeleton architecture by severing and capping existing filamentous actin (F-actin) strands and nucleating the assembly of new F-actin filaments. Ads has been implicated in cellular secretion, exocytosis and has also been shown to regulate chondrogenesis and megakaryoblastic leukemia cell differentiation. Here we report for the first time that Ads is involved in regulating osteoclastogenesi...

  4. Role of active contraction and tropomodulins in regulating actin filament length and sarcomere structure in developing zebrafish skeletal muscle

    Lise eMazelet

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Whilst it is recognised that contraction plays an important part in maintaining the structure and function of mature skeletal muscle, its role during development remains undefined. In this study the role of movement in skeletal muscle maturation was investigated in intact zebrafish embryos using a combination of genetic and pharmacological approaches. An immotile mutant line (cacnb1ts25 which lacks functional voltage-gated calcium channels (dihydropyridine receptors in the muscle and pharmacological immobilisation of embryos with a reversible anaesthetic (Tricaine, allowed the study of paralysis (in mutants and anaesthetised fish and recovery of movement (reversal of anaesthetic treatment. The effect of paralysis in early embryos (aged between 17-24 hours post fertilisation, hpf on skeletal muscle structure at both myofibrillar and myofilament level was determined using both immunostaining with confocal microscopy and small angle X-ray diffraction. The consequences of paralysis and subsequent recovery on the localisation of the actin capping proteins Tropomodulin 1 &4 (Tmod in fish aged from 17hpf until 42hpf was also assessed. The functional consequences of early paralysis were investigated by examining the mechanical properties of the larval muscle. The length-force relationship, active and passive tension, was measured in immotile, recovered and control skeletal muscle at 5 and 7 day post fertilisation (dpf. Recovery of muscle function was also assessed by examining swimming patterns in recovered and control fish. Inhibition of the initial embryonic movements (up to 24 hpf resulted in an increase in myofibril length and a decrease in width followed by almost complete recovery in both moving and paralysed fish by 42hpf. In conclusion, myofibril organisation is regulated by a dual mechanism involving movement-dependent and movement-independent processes. The initial contractile event itself drives the localisation of Tmod1 to its sarcomeric

  5. WASH complex regulates Arp2/3 complex for actin-based polar body extrusion in mouse oocytes

    Wang, Fei; Zhang, Liang; Zhang, Guang-Li; Wang, Zhen-Bo; CUI, Xiang-Shun; Kim, Nam-Hyung; Sun, Shao-Chen

    2014-01-01

    Prior to their fertilization, oocytes undergo asymmetric division, which is regulated by actin filaments. Recently, WASH complex were identified as actin nucleation promoting factors (NPF) that activated Arp2/3 complex. However, the roles of WASH complex remain uncertain, particularly for oocyte polarization and asymmetric division. Here, we examined the functions of two important subunits of a WASH complex, WASH1 and Strumpellin, during mouse oocyte meiosis. Depleting WASH1 or disrupting Str...

  6. Pattern formation in polymerising actin flocks: spirals, spots and waves without nonlinear chemistry

    Goff, Thomas Le; Marenduzzo, Davide

    2016-01-01

    We propose a model solely based on actin treadmilling and polymerisation which describes many characteristic states of actin wave formation: spots, spirals and travelling waves. In our model, as in experiments on cell recovering motility following actin depolymerisation, we choose an isotropic low density initial condition; polymerisation of actin filaments then raises the density towards the Onsager threshold where they align. We show that this alignment, in turn, destabilizes the isotropic phase and generically induces transient actin spots or spirals as part of the dynamical pathway towards a polarized phase which can either be uniform or consist of a series of actin-wave trains (flocks). Our results uncover a universal route to actin wave formation in the absence of any system specific nonlinear biochemistry, and it may help understand the mechanism underlying the observation of actin spots and waves in vivo. They also suggest a minimal setup to design similar patterns in vitro.

  7. Computational Study of the Binding Mechanism of Actin-Depolymerizing Factor 1 with Actin in Arabidopsis thaliana.

    Du, Juan; Wang, Xue; Dong, Chun-Hai; Yang, Jian Ming; Yao, Xiao Jun

    2016-01-01

    Actin is a highly conserved protein. It plays important roles in cellular function and exists either in the monomeric (G-actin) or polymeric form (F-actin). Members of the actin-depolymerizing factor (ADF)/cofilin protein family bind to both G-actin and F-actin and play vital roles in actin dynamics by manipulating the rates of filament polymerization and depolymerization. It has been reported that the S6D and R98A/K100A mutants of actin-depolymerizing factor 1 (ADF1) in Arabidopsis thaliana decreased the binding affinity of ADF for the actin monomer. To investigate the binding mechanism and dynamic behavior of the ADF1-actin complex, we constructed a homology model of the AtADF1-actin complex based on the crystal structure of AtADF1 and the twinfilin C-terminal ADF-H domain in a complex with a mouse actin monomer. The model was then refined for subsequent molecular dynamics simulations. Increased binding energy of the mutated system was observed using the Molecular Mechanics Generalized Born Surface Area and Poisson-Boltzmann Surface Area (MM-GB/PBSA) methods. To determine the residues that make decisive contributions to the ADF1 actin-binding affinity, per-residue decomposition and computational alanine scanning analyses were performed, which provided more detailed information on the binding mechanism. Root-mean-square fluctuation and principal component analyses confirmed that the S6D and R98A/K100A mutants induced an increased conformational flexibility. The comprehensive molecular insight gained from this study is of great importance for understanding the binding mechanism of ADF1 and G-actin. PMID:27414648

  8. Effects of F/G-actin ratio and actin turn-over rate on NADPH oxidase activity in microglia

    Rasmussen, Izabela; Pedersen, Line Hjortshøj; Byg, Luise;

    2010-01-01

    Most in vivo studies that have addressed the role of actin dynamics in NADPH oxidase function in phagocytes have used toxins to modulate the polymerization state of actin and mostly effects on actin has been evaluated by end point measurements of filamentous actin, which says little about actin d...

  9. Altered Cell Mechanics from the Inside: Dispersed Single Wall Carbon Nanotubes Integrate with and Restructure Actin

    Mohammad F. Islam

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available With a range of desirable mechanical and optical properties, single wall carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs are a promising material for nanobiotechnologies. SWCNTs also have potential as biomaterials for modulation of cellular structures. Previously, we showed that highly purified, dispersed SWCNTs grossly alter F-actin inside cells. F-actin plays critical roles in the maintenance of cell structure, force transduction, transport and cytokinesis. Thus, quantification of SWCNT-actin interactions ranging from molecular, sub-cellular and cellular levels with both structure and function is critical for developing SWCNT-based biotechnologies. Further, this interaction can be exploited, using SWCNTs as a unique actin-altering material. Here, we utilized molecular dynamics simulations to explore the interactions of SWCNTs with actin filaments. Fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy confirmed that SWCNTs were located within ~5 nm of F-actin in cells but did not interact with G-actin. SWCNTs did not alter myosin II sub-cellular localization, and SWCNT treatment in cells led to significantly shorter actin filaments. Functionally, cells with internalized SWCNTs had greatly reduced cell traction force. Combined, these results demonstrate direct, specific SWCNT alteration of F-actin structures which can be exploited for SWCNT-based biotechnologies and utilized as a new method to probe fundamental actin-related cellular processes and biophysics.

  10. Cap Z(36/32), a barbed end actin-capping protein, is a component of the Z-line of skeletal muscle

    1987-01-01

    Various biological activities have been attributed to actin-capping proteins based on their in vitro effects on actin filaments. However, there is little direct evidence for their in vivo activities. In this paper, we show that Cap Z(36/32), a barbed end, actin-capping protein isolated from muscle (Casella, J. F., D. J. Maack, and S. Lin, 1986, J. Biol. Chem., 261:10915-10921) is localized to the barbed ends of actin filaments by electron microscopy and to the Z-line of chicken skeletal muscl...

  11. A semi-flexible model prediction for the polymerization force exerted by a living F-actin filament on a fixed wall

    Pierleoni, Carlo; Ryckaert, Jean-Paul

    2015-01-01

    We consider a single living semi-flexible filament with persistence length l_p in chemical equilibrium with an ideal solution of free monomers at fixed monomer chemical potential mu_1 and fixed temperature T. While one end of the filament is chemically active with single monomer (de)polymerization steps, the other end is grafted normally to a rigid wall to mimick a rigid network from which the filament under consideration emerges. A second rigid wall, parallel to the grafting wall, is fixed at distance L<filament seed. In supercritical conditions the filament tends to grow and impinges onto the second surface which, in suitable conditions (non-escaping filament regime) stops the filament growth. We first establish the grand-potential and derive some general properties, in particular the filament size distribution and the force exerted by the living filament on the obstacle wall. We apply this formalism to the semi-flexible, living, discrete Wormlike chain (d-WLC) model with step size d and...

  12. Actin turnover is required to prevent axon retraction driven by endogenous actomyosin contractility

    Gallo, Gianluca; Yee, Hal F.; Letourneau, Paul C.

    2002-01-01

    Growth cone motility and guidance depend on the dynamic reorganization of filamentous actin (F-actin). In the growth cone, F-actin undergoes turnover, which is the exchange of actin subunits from existing filaments. However, the function of F-actin turnover is not clear. We used jasplakinolide (jasp), a cell-permeable macrocyclic peptide that inhibits F-actin turnover, to study the role of F-actin turnover in axon extension. Treatment with jasp caused axon retraction, demonstrating that axon ...

  13. A new mechanism for nuclear import by actin-based propulsion used by a baculovirus nucleocapsid.

    Au, Shelly; Wu, Wei; Zhou, Lixin; Theilmann, David A; Panté, Nelly

    2016-08-01

    The transport of macromolecules into the nucleus is mediated by soluble cellular receptors of the importin β superfamily and requires the Ran-GTPase cycle. Several studies have provided evidence that there are exceptions to this canonical nuclear import pathway. Here, we report a new unconventional nuclear import mechanism exploited by the baculovirus Autographa californica multiple nucleopolyhedrovirus (AcMNPV). We found that AcMNPV nucleocapsids entered the nucleus of digitonin-permeabilized cells in the absence of exogenous cytosol or under conditions that blocked the Ran-GTPase cycle. AcMNPV contains a protein that activates the Arp2/3 complex and induces actin polymerization at one end of the rod-shaped nucleocapsid. We show that inhibitors of Arp2/3 blocked nuclear import of nucleocapsids in semi-permeabilized cells. Nuclear import of nucleocapsids was also reconstituted in purified nuclei supplemented with G-actin and Arp2/3 under actin polymerization conditions. Thus, we propose that actin polymerization drives not only migration of baculovirus through the cytoplasm but also pushes the nucleocapsid through the nuclear pore complex to enter the cell nucleus. Our findings point to a very distinct role of actin-based motility during the baculovirus infection cycle. PMID:27284005

  14. Technical advance: identification of plant actin-binding proteins by F-actin affinity chromatography

    Hu, S.; Brady, S. R.; Kovar, D. R.; Staiger, C. J.; Clark, G. B.; Roux, S. J.; Muday, G. K.

    2000-01-01

    Proteins that interact with the actin cytoskeleton often modulate the dynamics or organization of the cytoskeleton or use the cytoskeleton to control their localization. In plants, very few actin-binding proteins have been identified and most are thought to modulate cytoskeleton function. To identify actin-binding proteins that are unique to plants, the development of new biochemical procedures will be critical. Affinity columns using actin monomers (globular actin, G-actin) or actin filaments (filamentous actin, F-actin) have been used to identify actin-binding proteins from a wide variety of organisms. Monomeric actin from zucchini (Cucurbita pepo L.) hypocotyl tissue was purified to electrophoretic homogeneity and shown to be native and competent for polymerization to actin filaments. G-actin, F-actin and bovine serum albumin affinity columns were prepared and used to separate samples enriched in either soluble or membrane-associated actin-binding proteins. Extracts of soluble actin-binding proteins yield distinct patterns when eluted from the G-actin and F-actin columns, respectively, leading to the identification of a putative F-actin-binding protein of approximately 40 kDa. When plasma membrane-associated proteins were applied to these columns, two abundant polypeptides eluted selectively from the F-actin column and cross-reacted with antiserum against pea annexins. Additionally, a protein that binds auxin transport inhibitors, the naphthylphthalamic acid binding protein, which has been previously suggested to associate with the actin cytoskeleton, was eluted in a single peak from the F-actin column. These experiments provide a new approach that may help to identify novel actin-binding proteins from plants.

  15. Bulkiness or aromatic nature of tyrosine-143 of actin is important for the weak binding between F-actin and myosin-ADP-phosphate

    Gomibuchi, Yuki [Graduate School of Science and Engineering, Teikyo University, Toyosatodai 1-1, Utsunomiya 320-8551 (Japan); Uyeda, Taro Q.P. [Biomedical Research Institute, National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, AIST Tsukuba Central 4, 1-1-1 Higashi, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-8562 (Japan); Wakabayashi, Takeyuki, E-mail: tw007@nasu.bio.teikyo-u.ac.jp [Graduate School of Science and Engineering, Teikyo University, Toyosatodai 1-1, Utsunomiya 320-8551 (Japan); Department of Judo Therapy, Faculty of Medical Technology, Teikyo University, Toyosatodai 1-1, Utsunomiya 320-8551 (Japan)

    2013-11-29

    Highlights: •The effect of mutation of Tyr143 that becomes more exposed on assembly was examined. •Mutation of tyrosine-143 of Dictyostelium actin changed actin polymerizability. •The bulkiness or aromatic nature of Tyr143 is important for the weak binding. •The weak interaction between myosin and actin strengthened by Tyr143Trp mutation. -- Abstract: Actin filaments (F-actin) interact with myosin and activate its ATPase to support force generation. By comparing crystal structures of G-actin and the quasi-atomic model of F-actin based on high-resolution cryo-electron microscopy, the tyrosine-143 was found to be exposed more than 60 Å{sup 2} to the solvent in F-actin. Because tyrosine-143 flanks the hydrophobic cleft near the hydrophobic helix that binds to myosin, the mutant actins, of which the tyrosine-143 was replaced with tryptophan, phenylalanine, or isoleucine, were generated using the Dictyostelium expression system. It polymerized significantly poorly when induced by NaCl, but almost normally by KCl. In the presence of phalloidin and KCl, the extents of the polymerization of all the mutant actins were comparable to that of the wild-type actin so that the actin-activated myosin ATPase activity could be reliably compared. The affinity of skeletal heavy meromyosin to F-actin and the maximum ATPase activity (V{sub max}) were estimated by a double reciprocal plot. The Tyr143Trp-actin showed the higher affinity (smaller K{sub app}) than that of the wild-type actin, with the V{sub max} being almost unchanged. The K{sub app} and V{sub max} of the Tyr143Phe-actin were similar to those of the wild-type actin. However, the activation by Tyr143Ile-actin was much smaller than the wild-type actin and the accurate determination of K{sub app} was difficult. Comparison of the myosin ATPase activated by the various mutant actins at the same concentration of F-actin showed that the extent of activation correlates well with the solvent-accessible surface areas (ASA

  16. Effects of F/G-actin ratio and actin turn-over rate on NADPH oxidase activity in microglia

    Rasmussen Izabela; Pedersen Line H; Byg Luise; Suzuki Kazuhiro; Sumimoto Hideki; Vilhardt Frederik

    2010-01-01

    Abstract Background Most in vivo studies that have addressed the role of actin dynamics in NADPH oxidase function in phagocytes have used toxins to modulate the polymerization state of actin and mostly effects on actin has been evaluated by end point measurements of filamentous actin, which says little about actin dynamics, and without consideration for the subcellular distribution of the perturbed actin cytoskeleton. Results Here, we in addition to toxins use conditional expression of the ma...

  17. Actin-Based Motility of Burkholderia thailandensis Requires a Central Acidic Domain of BimA That Recruits and Activates the Cellular Arp2/3 Complex▿

    Sitthidet, Chayada; Stevens, Joanne M; Field, Terence R.; Layton, Abigail N.; Korbsrisate, Sunee; Stevens, Mark P.

    2010-01-01

    Burkholderia species use BimA for intracellular actin-based motility. Uniquely, Burkholderia thailandensis BimA harbors a central and acidic (CA) domain. The CA domain was required for actin-based motility, binding to the cellular Arp2/3 complex, and Arp2/3-dependent polymerization of actin monomers. Our data reveal distinct strategies for actin-based motility among Burkholderia species.

  18. Actin protofilament orientation in deformation of the erythrocyte membrane skeleton.

    Picart, C.; Dalhaimer, P.; Discher, D. E.

    2000-01-01

    The red cell's spectrin-actin network is known to sustain local states of shear, dilation, and condensation, and yet the short actin filaments are found to maintain membrane-tangent and near-random azimuthal orientations. When calibrated with polarization results for single actin filaments, imaging of micropipette-deformed red cell ghosts has allowed an assessment of actin orientations and possible reorientations in the network. At the hemispherical cap of the aspirated projection, where the ...

  19. Prediction of Filamentous Sludge Bulking using a State-based Gaussian Processes Regression Model

    Liu, Yiqi; Guo, Jianhua; Wang, Qilin; Huang, Daoping

    2016-01-01

    Activated sludge process has been widely adopted to remove pollutants in wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs). However, stable operation of activated sludge process is often compromised by the occurrence of filamentous bulking. The aim of this study is to build a proper model for timely diagnosis and prediction of filamentous sludge bulking in an activated sludge process. This study developed a state-based Gaussian Process Regression (GPR) model to monitor the filamentous sludge bulking related parameter, sludge volume index (SVI), in such a way that the evolution of SVI can be predicted over multi-step ahead. This methodology was validated with SVI data collected from one full-scale WWTP. Online diagnosis and prediction of filamentous bulking sludge with real-time SVI prediction was tested through a simulation study. The results showed that the proposed methodology was capable of predicting future SVIs with good accuracy, thus providing sufficient time for predicting and controlling filamentous sludge bulking. PMID:27498888

  20. Prediction of Filamentous Sludge Bulking using a State-based Gaussian Processes Regression Model.

    Liu, Yiqi; Guo, Jianhua; Wang, Qilin; Huang, Daoping

    2016-01-01

    Activated sludge process has been widely adopted to remove pollutants in wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs). However, stable operation of activated sludge process is often compromised by the occurrence of filamentous bulking. The aim of this study is to build a proper model for timely diagnosis and prediction of filamentous sludge bulking in an activated sludge process. This study developed a state-based Gaussian Process Regression (GPR) model to monitor the filamentous sludge bulking related parameter, sludge volume index (SVI), in such a way that the evolution of SVI can be predicted over multi-step ahead. This methodology was validated with SVI data collected from one full-scale WWTP. Online diagnosis and prediction of filamentous bulking sludge with real-time SVI prediction was tested through a simulation study. The results showed that the proposed methodology was capable of predicting future SVIs with good accuracy, thus providing sufficient time for predicting and controlling filamentous sludge bulking. PMID:27498888

  1. Actin Cytoskeleton-Based Plant Synapse as Gravitransducer in the Transition Zone of the Root Apex

    Baluska, Frantisek; Barlow, Peter; Volkmann, Dieter; Mancuso, Stefano

    The actin cytoskeleton was originally proposed to act as the signal transducer in the plant gravity sensory-motoric circuit. Surprisingly, however, several studies have documented that roots perfom gravisensing and gravitropism more effectively if exposed to diverse anti-F-actin drugs. Our study, using decapped maize root apices, has revealed that depolymerization of F-actin stimulates gravity perception in cells of the transition zone where root gravitropism is initiated (Mancuso et al. 2006). It has been proposed (Balǔka et al. 2005, 2009a) that s the non-growing adhesive end-poles, enriched with F-actin and myosin VIII, and active in endocytic recycling of both PIN transporters and cell wall pectins cross-linked with calcium and boron, act as the gravisensing domains, and that these impinge directly upon the root motoric responses via control of polar auxin transport. This model suggests that mechanical asymmetry at these plant synapses determines vectorial gravity-controlled auxin transport. Due to the gravity-imposed mechanical load upon the protoplast, a tensional stress is also imposed upon the plasma membrane of the physically lower synaptic cell pole. This stress is then relieved by shifting the endocytosis-exocytosis balance towards exocytosis (Balǔka et al. s 2005, 2009a,b). This `Synaptic Auxin Secretion' hypothesis does not conflict with the `Starch Statolith' hypothesis, which is based on amyloplast sedimentation. In fact, the `Synaptic Auxin Secretion' hypothesis has many elements which allow its unification with the Starch-Statolith model (Balǔka et al. 2005, 2009a,b). s References Balǔka F, Volkmann D, Menzel D (2005) Plant synapses: actin-based adhesion s domains for cell-to-cell communication. Trends Plant Sci 10: 106-111 Balǔka F, Schlicht M, s Wan Y-L, Burbach C, Volkmann D (2009a) Intracellular domains and polarity in root apices: from synaptic domains to plant neurobiology. Nova Acta Leopoldina 96: 103-122 Balǔka s F, Mancuso S

  2. Solid friction between soft filaments

    Ward, Andrew; Schwenger, Walter; Welch, David; Lau, A W C; Vitelli, Vincenzo; Mahadevan, L; Dogic, Zvonimir

    2015-01-01

    Any macroscopic deformation of a filamentous bundle is necessarily accompanied by local sliding and/or stretching of the constituent filaments. Yet the nature of the sliding friction between two aligned filaments interacting through multiple contacts remains largely unexplored. Here, by directly measuring the sliding forces between two bundled F-actin filaments, we show that these frictional forces are unexpectedly large, scale logarithmically with sliding velocity as in solid-like friction, and exhibit complex dependence on the filaments' overlap length. We also show that a reduction of the frictional force by orders of magnitude, associated with a transition from solid-like friction to Stokes' drag, can be induced by coating F-actin with polymeric brushes. Furthermore, we observe similar transitions in filamentous microtubules and bacterial flagella. Our findings demonstrate how altering a filament's elasticity, structure and interactions can be used to engineer interfilament friction and thus tune the prop...

  3. A small molecule inhibitor of tropomyosin dissociates actin binding from tropomyosin-directed regulation of actin dynamics

    Teresa T. Bonello; Miro Janco; Jeff Hook; Alex Byun; Mark Appaduray; Irina Dedova; Sarah Hitchcock-DeGregori; Hardeman, Edna C.; Justine R. Stehn; Till Böcking; Gunning, Peter W.

    2016-01-01

    The tropomyosin family of proteins form end-to-end polymers along the actin filament. Tumour cells rely on specific tropomyosin-containing actin filament populations for growth and survival. To dissect out the role of tropomyosin in actin filament regulation we use the small molecule TR100 directed against the C terminus of the tropomyosin isoform Tpm3.1. TR100 nullifies the effect of Tpm3.1 on actin depolymerisation but surprisingly Tpm3.1 retains the capacity to bind F-actin in a cooperativ...

  4. RickA expression is not sufficient to promote actin-based motility of Rickettsia raoultii.

    Premanand Balraj

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Rickettsia raoultii is a novel Rickettsia species recently isolated from Dermacentor ticks and classified within the spotted fever group (SFG. The inability of R. raoultii to spread within L929 cells suggests that this bacterium is unable to polymerize host cell actin, a property exhibited by all SFG rickettsiae except R. peacocki. This result led us to investigate if RickA, the protein thought to generate actin nucleation, was expressed within this rickettsia species. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Amplification and sequencing of R. raoultii rickA showed that this gene encoded a putative 565 amino acid protein highly homologous to those found in other rickettsiae. Using immunofluorescence assays, we determined that the motility pattern (i.e. microcolonies or cell-to-cell spreading of R. raoultii was different depending on the host cell line in which the bacteria replicated. In contrast, under the same experimental conditions, R. conorii shares the same phenotype both in L929 and in Vero cells. Transmission electron microscopy analysis of infected cells showed that non-motile bacteria were free in the cytosol instead of enclosed in a vacuole. Moreover, western-blot analysis demonstrated that the defect of R. raoultii actin-based motility within L929 cells was not related to lower expression of RickA. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: These results, together with previously published data about R. typhi, strongly suggest that another factor, apart from RickA, may be involved with be responsible for actin-based motility in bacteria from the Rickettsia genus.

  5. Comparative Biomechanics of Thick Filaments and Thin Filaments with Functional Consequences for Muscle Contraction

    Miller, Mark S; Tanner, Bertrand C. W.; Lori R. Nyland; Vigoreaux, Jim O.

    2010-01-01

    The scaffold of striated muscle is predominantly comprised of myosin and actin polymers known as thick filaments and thin filaments, respectively. The roles these filaments play in muscle contraction are well known, but the extent to which variations in filament mechanical properties influence muscle function is not fully understood. Here we review information on the material properties of thick filaments, thin filaments, and their primary constituents; we also discuss ways in which mechanica...

  6. Actinic Cheilitis

    ... actinic cheilitis. Overview Actinic cheilitis, sometimes known as "farmer's lip" or "sailor's lip," is a precancerous condition ... Last Updated: 22 Dec 2008 Information for other ages: Table of Contents: Overview Who's At Risk Signs ...

  7. Properties of ceramics based on cerium dioxide with crystalline filaments

    Problems of the increase of thermal resistance of ceramics on the basis of cerium dioxide with the interduction of filamentous crystals (FC) of CeO2 and MgO have been considered. It is established that FC of MgO and CeO2 are dissolved in the matrix, foAming fine oblong pores, promoting relaxation of thermal strains and preventing crack propagation, which increases the material thermal resistance

  8. Mechanical coordination in motor ensembles revealed using engineered artificial myosin filaments

    Hariadi, R. F.; Sommese, R. F.; Adhikari, A. S.; Taylor, R. E.; Sutton, S.; Spudich, J. A.; Sivaramakrishnan, S.

    2015-08-01

    The sarcomere of muscle is composed of tens of thousands of myosin motors that self-assemble into thick filaments and interact with surrounding actin-based thin filaments in a dense, near-crystalline hexagonal lattice. Together, these actin-myosin interactions enable large-scale movement and force generation, two primary attributes of muscle. Research on isolated fibres has provided considerable insight into the collective properties of muscle, but how actin-myosin interactions are coordinated in an ensemble remains poorly understood. Here, we show that artificial myosin filaments, engineered using a DNA nanotube scaffold, provide precise control over motor number, type and spacing. Using both dimeric myosin V- and myosin VI-labelled nanotubes, we find that neither myosin density nor spacing has a significant effect on the gliding speed of actin filaments. This observation supports a simple model of myosin ensembles as energy reservoirs that buffer individual stochastic events to bring about smooth, continuous motion. Furthermore, gliding speed increases with cross-bridge compliance, but is limited by Brownian effects. As a first step to reconstituting muscle motility, we demonstrate human β-cardiac myosin-driven gliding of actin filaments on DNA nanotubes.

  9. Characterization of ring-like F-actin structure as a mechanical partner for spindle positioning in mitosis.

    Huan Lu

    Full Text Available Proper spindle positioning and orientation are essential for accurate mitosis which requires dynamic interactions between microtubule and actin filament (F-actin. Although mounting evidence demonstrates the role of F-actin in cortical cytoskeleton dynamics, it remains elusive as to the structure and function of F-actin-based networks in spindle geometry. Here we showed a ring-like F-actin structure surrounding the mitotic spindle which forms since metaphase and maintains in MG132-arrested metaphase HeLa cells. This cytoplasmic F-actin structure is relatively isotropic and less dynamic. Our computational modeling of spindle position process suggests a possible mechanism by which the ring-like F-actin structure can regulate astral microtubule dynamics and thus mitotic spindle orientation. We further demonstrated that inhibiting Plk1, Mps1 or Myosin, and disruption of microtubules or F-actin polymerization perturbs the formation of the ring-like F-actin structure and alters spindle position and symmetric division. These findings reveal a previously unrecognized but important link between mitotic spindle and ring-like F-actin network in accurate mitosis and enables the development of a method to theoretically illustrate the relationship between mitotic spindle and cytoplasmic F-actin.

  10. Dynamics of an actin spring

    Riera, Christophe; Mahadevan, L.; Shin, Jennifer; Matsudaira, Paul

    2003-03-01

    The acrosome of the sperm of the horseshoe crab (Limulus Polyphemus) is an unusual actin based system that shows a spectacular dynamical transition in the presence of Ca++ that is present in abundance in the neighborhood of the egg. During this process, the bundle, which is initially bent and twisted uncoils and becomes straight in a matter of a few seconds. Based on microstructural data, we propose a model for the dynamics of uncoiling that is best represented by a triple-well potential corresponding to the different structural arrangements of the supertwisted filaments. Each of the false, true and coiled states corresponds to a local minimum of the energy, with the true state being the one with the lowest energy. Using an evolution equation derived by balancing torques, we investigate the nucleation and propagation of the phase transition and compare the results with those of experiments. Our model quantifies the hypothesis that the acrosomal bundle behaves like a mechano-chemical spring.

  11. Sarcomeric pattern formation by actin cluster coalescence.

    Benjamin M Friedrich

    Full Text Available Contractile function of striated muscle cells depends crucially on the almost crystalline order of actin and myosin filaments in myofibrils, but the physical mechanisms that lead to myofibril assembly remains ill-defined. Passive diffusive sorting of actin filaments into sarcomeric order is kinetically impossible, suggesting a pivotal role of active processes in sarcomeric pattern formation. Using a one-dimensional computational model of an initially unstriated actin bundle, we show that actin filament treadmilling in the presence of processive plus-end crosslinking provides a simple and robust mechanism for the polarity sorting of actin filaments as well as for the correct localization of myosin filaments. We propose that the coalescence of crosslinked actin clusters could be key for sarcomeric pattern formation. In our simulations, sarcomere spacing is set by filament length prompting tight length control already at early stages of pattern formation. The proposed mechanism could be generic and apply both to premyofibrils and nascent myofibrils in developing muscle cells as well as possibly to striated stress-fibers in non-muscle cells.

  12. Human endothelial actin-binding protein (ABP-280, nonmuscle filamin): a molecular leaf spring

    1990-01-01

    Actin-binding protein (ABP-280, nonmuscle filamin) is a ubiquitous dimeric actin cross-linking phosphoprotein of peripheral cytoplasm, where it promotes orthogonal branching of actin filaments and links actin filaments to membrane glycoproteins. The complete nucleotide sequence of human endothelial cell ABP cDNA predicts a polypeptide subunit chain of 2,647 amino acids, corresponding to 280 kD, also the mass derived from physical measurements of the native protein. The actin-binding domain is...

  13. Effects of F/G-actin ratio and actin turn-over rate on NADPH oxidase activity in microglia

    Rasmussen Izabela

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Most in vivo studies that have addressed the role of actin dynamics in NADPH oxidase function in phagocytes have used toxins to modulate the polymerization state of actin and mostly effects on actin has been evaluated by end point measurements of filamentous actin, which says little about actin dynamics, and without consideration for the subcellular distribution of the perturbed actin cytoskeleton. Results Here, we in addition to toxins use conditional expression of the major actin regulatory protein LIM kinase-1 (LIMK1, and shRNA knock-down of cofilin to modulate the cellular F/G-actin ratio in the Ra2 microglia cell line, and we use Fluorescence Recovery after Photobleaching (FRAP in β-actin-YFP-transduced cells to obtain a dynamic measure of actin recovery rates (actin turn-over rates in different F/G-actin states of the actin cytoskeleton. Our data demonstrate that stimulated NADPH oxidase function was severely impaired only at extreme actin recovery rates and F/G-actin ratios, and surprisingly, that any moderate changes of these parameters of the actin cytoskeleton invariably resulted in an increased NADPH oxidase activity. Conclusion moderate actin polymerization and depolymerization both increase the FMLP and PMA-stimulated NADPH oxidase activity of microglia, which is directly correlated with neither actin recovery rate nor F/G- actin ratio. Our results indicate that NADPH oxidase functions in an enhanced state of activity in stimulated phagocytes despite widely different states of the actin cytoskeleton.

  14. Gelsolin mediates calcium-dependent disassembly of Listeria actin tails

    Larson, Laura; Arnaudeau, Serge; Gibson, Bruce; Li, Wei; Krause, Ryoko; Hao, Binghua; Bamburg, James R.; Lew, Daniel P.; Demaurex, Nicolas; Southwick, Frederick

    2005-01-01

    The role of intracellular Ca2+ in the regulation of actin filament assembly and disassembly has not been clearly defined. We show that reduction of intracellular free Ca2+ concentration ([Ca2+]i) to <40 nM in Listeria monocytogenes-infected, EGFP–actin-transfected Madin–Darby canine kidney cells results in a 3-fold lengthening of actin filament tails. This increase in tail length is the consequence of marked slowing of the actin filament disassembly rate, without a significant change in assembly rate. The Ca2+-sensitive actin-severing protein gelsolin concentrates in the Listeria rocket tails at normal resting [Ca2+]i and disassociates from the tails when [Ca2+]i is lowered. Reduction in [Ca2+]i also blocks the severing activity of gelsolin, but not actin-depolymerizing factor (ADF)/cofilin microinjected into Listeria-infected cells. In Xenopus extracts, Listeria tail lengths are also calcium-sensitive, markedly shortening on addition of calcium. Immunodepletion of gelsolin, but not Xenopus ADF/cofilin, eliminates calcium-sensitive actin-filament shortening. Listeria tail length is also calcium-insensitive in gelsolin-null mouse embryo fibroblasts. We conclude that gelsolin is the primary Ca2+-sensitive actin filament recycling protein in the cell and is capable of enhancing Listeria actin tail disassembly at normal resting [Ca2+]i (145 nM). These experiments illustrate the unique and complementary functions of gelsolin and ADF/cofilin in the recycling of actin filaments. PMID:15671163

  15. A radioimmunoassay for determination of anti-actin antibodies

    The reaction of spontaneously occurring human anti-actin antibodies and experimentally produced rabbit anti-actin antibodies was investigated in a solid-phase radioimmunoassay (RIA). Three structurally different in vitro forms of actin, monomeric G-actin, filamentous F-actin and aggregated denatured actin were used as antigens. Human anti-actin antibodies reacted with F- and G-actin but not with aggregated actin, while rabbit anti-actin antibodies gave a strong reaction with all 3 forms of actin indicating differences in antibody specificities. The results of the anti-actin RIA were compared with those obtained by indirect immunofluorescence (IFL) on cryostat sections of rat stomach. The anti-actin RIA discriminated between patients' sera and control sera in most cases, although the indirect IFL test gave more conclusive results. The seemingly low sensitivity of the anti-actin RIA compared with that of indirect IFL test for detection of human anti-actin antibodies is probably due to favourable antigen distribution in tissue, not available in the solid phase. The anti-actin RIA was able to detect anti-actin antibodies in 8 out of 8 immunized rabbits although only two produced antibodies detectable by indirect IFL. The differences in reactivity between the two methods may depend on the presence of aggregated denatured actin in the antigen preparation used for immunization and exposure of the corresponding antigenic determinants of actin on the solid phase. (Auth.)

  16. Actinic keratosis

    Solar keratosis; Sun-induced skin changes - keratosis; Keratosis - actinic (solar) ... laser treatment called photodynamic therapy Chemical peels Skin creams such as 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) and imiquimod

  17. Felix: A Topology based Framework for Visual Exploration of Cosmic Filaments

    Shivshankar, Nithin; Natarajan, Vijay; van de Weygaert, Rien; Bos, E G Patrick; Rieder, Steven

    2015-01-01

    The large-scale structure of the universe is comprised of virialized blob-like clusters, linear filaments, sheet-like walls and huge near empty three-dimensional voids. Characterizing the large scale universe is essential to our understanding of the formation and evolution of galaxies. The density range of clusters, walls and voids are relatively well separated, when compared to filaments, which span a relatively larger range. The large scale filamentary network thus forms an intricate part of the cosmic web. In this paper, we describe Felix, a topology based framework for visual exploration of filaments in the cosmic web. The filamentary structure is represented by the ascending manifold geometry of the 2-saddles in the Morse-Smale complex of the density field. We generate a hierarchy of Morse-Smale complexes and query for filaments based on the density ranges at the end points of the filaments. The query is processed efficiently over the entire hierarchical Morse-Smale complex, allowing for interactive visu...

  18. Mechanisms of Rickettsia parkeri invasion of host cells and early actin-based motility

    Reed, Shawna

    2012-01-01

    Rickettsiae are obligate intracellular pathogens that are transmitted to humans by arthropod vectors and cause diseases such as spotted fever and typhus. Spotted fever group (SFG) Rickettsia hijack the host actin cytoskeleton to invade, move within, and spread between eukaryotic host cells during their obligate intracellular life cycle. Rickettsia express two bacterial proteins that can activate actin polymerization: RickA activates the host actin-nucleating Arp2/3 complex while Sca2 directly...

  19. Performance of GaN-on-Si-based vertical light-emitting diodes using silicon nitride electrodes with conducting filaments: correlation between filament density and device reliability.

    Kim, Kyeong Heon; Kim, Su Jin; Lee, Tae Ho; Lee, Byeong Ryong; Kim, Tae Geun

    2016-08-01

    Transparent conductive electrodes with good conductivity and optical transmittance are an essential element for highly efficient light-emitting diodes. However, conventional indium tin oxide and its alternative transparent conductive electrodes have some trouble with a trade-off between electrical conductivity and optical transmittance, thus limiting their practical applications. Here, we present silicon nitride transparent conductive electrodes with conducting filaments embedded using the electrical breakdown process and investigate the dependence of the conducting filament density formed in the transparent conductive electrode on the device performance of gallium nitride-based vertical light-emitting diodes. Three gallium nitride-on-silicon-based vertical light-emitting diodes using silicon nitride transparent conductive electrodes with high, medium, and low conducting filament densities were prepared with a reference vertical light-emitting diode using metal electrodes. This was carried to determine the optimal density of the conducting filaments in the proposed silicon nitride transparent conductive electrodes. In comparison, the vertical light-emitting diodes with a medium conducting filament density exhibited the lowest optical loss, direct ohmic behavior, and the best current injection and distribution over the entire n-type gallium nitride surface, leading to highly reliable light-emitting diode performance. PMID:27505739

  20. Direct observation of conductive filament formation in Alq3 based organic resistive memories

    This work explores resistive switching mechanisms in non-volatile organic memory devices based on tris(8-hydroxyquinolie)aluminum (Alq3). Advanced characterization tools are applied to investigate metal diffusion in ITO/Alq3/Ag memory device stacks leading to conductive filament formation. The morphology of Alq3/Ag layers as a function of the metal evaporation conditions is studied by X-ray reflectivity, while depth profile analysis with X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry is applied to characterize operational memory elements displaying reliable bistable current-voltage characteristics. 3D images of the distribution of silver inside the organic layer clearly point towards the existence of conductive filaments and allow for the identification of the initial filament formation and inactivation mechanisms during switching of the device. Initial filament formation is suggested to be driven by field assisted diffusion of silver from abundant structures formed during the top electrode evaporation, whereas thermochemical effects lead to local filament inactivation

  1. Direct observation of conductive filament formation in Alq3 based organic resistive memories

    Busby, Y., E-mail: yan.busby@unamur.be; Pireaux, J.-J. [Research Center in the Physics of Matter and Radiation (PMR), Laboratoire Interdisciplinaire de Spectroscopie Electronique (LISE), University of Namur, B-5000 Namur (Belgium); Nau, S.; Sax, S. [NanoTecCenter Weiz Forschungsgesellschaft mbH, Franz-Pichler Straße 32, A-8160 Weiz (Austria); List-Kratochvil, E. J. W. [NanoTecCenter Weiz Forschungsgesellschaft mbH, Franz-Pichler Straße 32, A-8160 Weiz (Austria); Institute of Solid State Physics, Graz University of Technology, A-8010 Graz (Austria); Novak, J.; Banerjee, R.; Schreiber, F. [Institute of Applied Physics, Eberhard-Karls-Universität Tübingen, D-72076 Tübingen (Germany)

    2015-08-21

    This work explores resistive switching mechanisms in non-volatile organic memory devices based on tris(8-hydroxyquinolie)aluminum (Alq{sub 3}). Advanced characterization tools are applied to investigate metal diffusion in ITO/Alq{sub 3}/Ag memory device stacks leading to conductive filament formation. The morphology of Alq{sub 3}/Ag layers as a function of the metal evaporation conditions is studied by X-ray reflectivity, while depth profile analysis with X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry is applied to characterize operational memory elements displaying reliable bistable current-voltage characteristics. 3D images of the distribution of silver inside the organic layer clearly point towards the existence of conductive filaments and allow for the identification of the initial filament formation and inactivation mechanisms during switching of the device. Initial filament formation is suggested to be driven by field assisted diffusion of silver from abundant structures formed during the top electrode evaporation, whereas thermochemical effects lead to local filament inactivation.

  2. Branching of keratin intermediate filaments.

    Nafeey, Soufi; Martin, Ines; Felder, Tatiana; Walther, Paul; Felder, Edward

    2016-06-01

    Keratin intermediate filaments (IFs) are crucial to maintain mechanical stability in epithelial cells. Since little is known about the network architecture that provides this stiffness and especially about branching properties of filaments, we addressed this question with different electron microscopic (EM) methods. Using EM tomography of high pressure frozen keratinocytes, we investigated the course of several filaments in a branching of a filament bundle. Moreover we found several putative bifurcations in individual filaments. To verify our observation we also visualized the keratin network in detergent extracted keratinocytes with scanning EM. Here bifurcations of individual filaments could unambiguously be identified additionally to bundle branchings. Interestingly, identical filament bifurcations were also found in purified keratin 8/18 filaments expressed in Escherichia coli which were reassembled in vitro. This excludes that an accessory protein contributes to the branch formation. Measurements of the filament cross sectional areas showed various ratios between the three bifurcation arms. This demonstrates that intermediate filament furcation is very different from actin furcation where an entire new filament is attached to an existing filament. Instead, the architecture of intermediate filament bifurcations is less predetermined and hence consistent with the general concept of IF formation. PMID:27039023

  3. Interface-induced two-step RESET for filament-based multi-level resistive memory

    Yuan, Fang; Shen, Shanshan; Zhang, Zhigang; Pan, Liyang; Xu, Jun

    2016-03-01

    In this paper, a two-step RESET switching behavior of Ag/Al2O3/HfO2/Pt bilayer resistive random access memory (RRAM) devices is investigated. The interface between the two oxide layers is responsible for the special two-step RESET switching. When the conducting filaments have ruptured in the lower layer, the interface can protect the Ag ions of the filaments from breaking in the upper layer due to the trapped charges or defects at the interface. Therefore, a stable middle resistance state (MRS) is realized and the device exhibits a terrace-like I-V curve during the RESET operations. A filament-based switching mechanism combined with the electron hopping theory is proposed to explain the physical nature of the two-step RESET behavior. Furthermore, a good multi-level resistive switching performance with excellent endurance and retention reliability is obtained.

  4. How does the antagonism between capping and anti-capping proteins affect actin network dynamics?

    Actin-based cell motility is essential to many biological processes. We built a simplified, three-dimensional computational model and subsequently performed stochastic simulations to study the growth dynamics of lamellipodia-like branched networks. In this work, we shed light on the antagonism between capping and anti-capping proteins in regulating actin dynamics in the filamentous network. We discuss detailed mechanisms by which capping and anti-capping proteins affect the protrusion speed of the actin network and the rate of nucleation of filaments. We computed a phase diagram showing the regimes of motility enhancement and inhibition by these proteins. Our work shows that the effects of capping and anti-capping proteins are mainly transmitted by modulation of the filamentous network density and local availability of monomeric actin. We discovered that the combination of the capping/anti-capping regulatory network with nucleation-promoting proteins introduces robustness and redundancy in cell motility machinery, allowing the cell to easily achieve maximal protrusion speeds under a broader set of conditions. Finally, we discuss distributions of filament lengths under various conditions and speculate on their potential implication for the emergence of filopodia from the lamellipodial network.

  5. How does the antagonism between capping and anti-capping proteins affect actin network dynamics?

    Hu, Longhua; Papoian, Garegin A.

    2011-09-01

    Actin-based cell motility is essential to many biological processes. We built a simplified, three-dimensional computational model and subsequently performed stochastic simulations to study the growth dynamics of lamellipodia-like branched networks. In this work, we shed light on the antagonism between capping and anti-capping proteins in regulating actin dynamics in the filamentous network. We discuss detailed mechanisms by which capping and anti-capping proteins affect the protrusion speed of the actin network and the rate of nucleation of filaments. We computed a phase diagram showing the regimes of motility enhancement and inhibition by these proteins. Our work shows that the effects of capping and anti-capping proteins are mainly transmitted by modulation of the filamentous network density and local availability of monomeric actin. We discovered that the combination of the capping/anti-capping regulatory network with nucleation-promoting proteins introduces robustness and redundancy in cell motility machinery, allowing the cell to easily achieve maximal protrusion speeds under a broader set of conditions. Finally, we discuss distributions of filament lengths under various conditions and speculate on their potential implication for the emergence of filopodia from the lamellipodial network.

  6. How does the antagonism between capping and anti-capping proteins affect actin network dynamics?

    Hu Longhua; Papoian, Garegin A, E-mail: gpapoian@umd.edu [Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Maryland, College Park, MD 20742 (United States)

    2011-09-21

    Actin-based cell motility is essential to many biological processes. We built a simplified, three-dimensional computational model and subsequently performed stochastic simulations to study the growth dynamics of lamellipodia-like branched networks. In this work, we shed light on the antagonism between capping and anti-capping proteins in regulating actin dynamics in the filamentous network. We discuss detailed mechanisms by which capping and anti-capping proteins affect the protrusion speed of the actin network and the rate of nucleation of filaments. We computed a phase diagram showing the regimes of motility enhancement and inhibition by these proteins. Our work shows that the effects of capping and anti-capping proteins are mainly transmitted by modulation of the filamentous network density and local availability of monomeric actin. We discovered that the combination of the capping/anti-capping regulatory network with nucleation-promoting proteins introduces robustness and redundancy in cell motility machinery, allowing the cell to easily achieve maximal protrusion speeds under a broader set of conditions. Finally, we discuss distributions of filament lengths under various conditions and speculate on their potential implication for the emergence of filopodia from the lamellipodial network.

  7. Kinetic factors determining conducting filament formation in solid polymer electrolyte based planar devices

    Krishnan, Karthik; Aono, Masakazu; Tsuruoka, Tohru

    2016-07-01

    Resistive switching characteristics and conducting filament formation dynamics in solid polymer electrolyte (SPE) based planar-type atomic switches, with opposing active Ag and inert Pt electrodes, have been investigated by optimizing the device configuration and experimental parameters such as the gap distance between the electrodes, the salt inclusion in the polymer matrix, and the compliance current applied in current-voltage measurements. The high ionic conductivities of SPE enabled us to make scanning electron microscopy observations of the filament formation processes in the sub-micrometer to micrometer ranges. It was found that switching behaviour and filament growth morphology depend strongly on several kinetic factors, such as the redox reaction rate at the electrode-polymer interfaces, ion mobility in the polymer matrix, electric field strength, and the reduction sites for precipitation. Different filament formations, resulting from unidirectional and dendritic growth behaviours, can be controlled by tuning specified parameters, which in turn improves the stability and performance of SPE-based devices.Resistive switching characteristics and conducting filament formation dynamics in solid polymer electrolyte (SPE) based planar-type atomic switches, with opposing active Ag and inert Pt electrodes, have been investigated by optimizing the device configuration and experimental parameters such as the gap distance between the electrodes, the salt inclusion in the polymer matrix, and the compliance current applied in current-voltage measurements. The high ionic conductivities of SPE enabled us to make scanning electron microscopy observations of the filament formation processes in the sub-micrometer to micrometer ranges. It was found that switching behaviour and filament growth morphology depend strongly on several kinetic factors, such as the redox reaction rate at the electrode-polymer interfaces, ion mobility in the polymer matrix, electric field strength

  8. Polymerization of fluorescent analogue of plant actin in vitro and in vivo

    2000-01-01

    Maize pollen actin has been labeled with Oregon Green 488 iodoacetamide. A yield of 3 mg fluorescent actin analogue has been obtained from 10 mg of maize pollen actin, which is 99% in purity and the dye/protein ratio is 72%. In the presence of Mg2+ and K+, the fluorescent actin analogue polymerized into filaments in vitro. Green fluorescent filaments were observed when the fluorescent actin was introduced into living plant cells by microinjection, indicating that the fluorescent actin analogue functions similarly to the native actin.

  9. Actin based processes that could determine the cytoplasmic architecture of plant cells

    Honing, van der H.S.; Emons, A.M.C.; Ketelaar, M.J.

    2007-01-01

    Actin polymerisation can generate forces that are necessary for cell movement, such as the propulsion of a class of bacteria, including Listeria, and the protrusion of migrating animal cells. Force generation by the actin cytoskeleton in plant cells has not been studied. One process in plant cells t

  10. Non-lytic, actin-based exit of intracellular parasites from C. elegans intestinal cells.

    Kathleen A Estes

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available The intestine is a common site for invasion by intracellular pathogens, but little is known about how pathogens restructure and exit intestinal cells in vivo. The natural microsporidian parasite N. parisii invades intestinal cells of the nematode C. elegans, progresses through its life cycle, and then exits cells in a transmissible spore form. Here we show that N. parisii causes rearrangements of host actin inside intestinal cells as part of a novel parasite exit strategy. First, we show that N. parisii infection causes ectopic localization of the normally apical-restricted actin to the basolateral side of intestinal cells, where it often forms network-like structures. Soon after this actin relocalization, we find that gaps appear in the terminal web, a conserved cytoskeletal structure that could present a barrier to exit. Reducing actin expression creates terminal web gaps in the absence of infection, suggesting that infection-induced actin relocalization triggers gap formation. We show that terminal web gaps form at a distinct stage of infection, precisely timed to precede spore exit, and that all contagious animals exhibit gaps. Interestingly, we find that while perturbations in actin can create these gaps, actin is not required for infection progression or spore formation, but actin is required for spore exit. Finally, we show that despite large numbers of spores exiting intestinal cells, this exit does not cause cell lysis. These results provide insight into parasite manipulation of the host cytoskeleton and non-lytic escape from intestinal cells in vivo.

  11. Non-lytic, actin-based exit of intracellular parasites from C. elegans intestinal cells.

    Estes, Kathleen A; Szumowski, Suzannah C; Troemel, Emily R

    2011-09-01

    The intestine is a common site for invasion by intracellular pathogens, but little is known about how pathogens restructure and exit intestinal cells in vivo. The natural microsporidian parasite N. parisii invades intestinal cells of the nematode C. elegans, progresses through its life cycle, and then exits cells in a transmissible spore form. Here we show that N. parisii causes rearrangements of host actin inside intestinal cells as part of a novel parasite exit strategy. First, we show that N. parisii infection causes ectopic localization of the normally apical-restricted actin to the basolateral side of intestinal cells, where it often forms network-like structures. Soon after this actin relocalization, we find that gaps appear in the terminal web, a conserved cytoskeletal structure that could present a barrier to exit. Reducing actin expression creates terminal web gaps in the absence of infection, suggesting that infection-induced actin relocalization triggers gap formation. We show that terminal web gaps form at a distinct stage of infection, precisely timed to precede spore exit, and that all contagious animals exhibit gaps. Interestingly, we find that while perturbations in actin can create these gaps, actin is not required for infection progression or spore formation, but actin is required for spore exit. Finally, we show that despite large numbers of spores exiting intestinal cells, this exit does not cause cell lysis. These results provide insight into parasite manipulation of the host cytoskeleton and non-lytic escape from intestinal cells in vivo. PMID:21949650

  12. Measurement and Analysis of in vitro Actin Polymerization

    Doolittle, Lynda K.; Rosen, Michael K.; Padrick, Shae B.

    2013-01-01

    The polymerization of actin underlies force generation in numerous cellular processes. While actin polymerization can occur spontaneously, cells maintain control over this important process by preventing actin filament nucleation and then allowing stimulated polymerization and elongation by several regulated factors. Actin polymerization, regulated nucleation and controlled elongation activities can be reconstituted in vitro, and used to probe the signaling cascades cells use to control when ...

  13. The interaction between actin and FA fragment of diphtheria toxin

    Ünlü, A.; Bektaş, M.; Şener, S.; Nurten, R.

    2012-01-01

    Actin protein has many other cellular functions such as movement, chemotaxis, secretion and cytodiaresis. Besides, it have structural function. Actin is a motor protein that it has an important role in the movement process of toxin in the cell. It is known that F-actin gives carriage support during the endosomal process. Actin is found in globular (G) and filamentous (F) structure in the cell. The helix of actin occurs as a result of polymerisation of monomeric G-actin molecules through seque...

  14. Architecture and Connectivity Govern Actin Network Contractility.

    Ennomani, Hajer; Letort, Gaëlle; Guérin, Christophe; Martiel, Jean-Louis; Cao, Wenxiang; Nédélec, François; De La Cruz, Enrique M; Théry, Manuel; Blanchoin, Laurent

    2016-03-01

    Actomyosin contractility plays a central role in a wide range of cellular processes, including the establishment of cell polarity, cell migration, tissue integrity, and morphogenesis during development. The contractile response is variable and depends on actomyosin network architecture and biochemical composition. To determine how this coupling regulates actomyosin-driven contraction, we used a micropatterning method that enables the spatial control of actin assembly. We generated a variety of actin templates and measured how defined actin structures respond to myosin-induced forces. We found that the same actin filament crosslinkers either enhance or inhibit the contractility of a network, depending on the organization of actin within the network. Numerical simulations unified the roles of actin filament branching and crosslinking during actomyosin contraction. Specifically, we introduce the concept of "network connectivity" and show that the contractions of distinct actin architectures are described by the same master curve when considering their degree of connectivity. This makes it possible to predict the dynamic response of defined actin structures to transient changes in connectivity. We propose that, depending on the connectivity and the architecture, network contraction is dominated by either sarcomeric-like or buckling mechanisms. More generally, this study reveals how actin network contractility depends on its architecture under a defined set of biochemical conditions. PMID:26898468

  15. Over-current characteristics of model coil using Y-based multi-filament wire for superconducting power transformers

    In the Japanese national project to develop superconducting power applications using Y-based coated conductors, the present focus is on various aspects of technological development of superconducting power transformers. Since Y-based multi-filament wire contributes to reduction in AC loss of superconducting transformer coils, a 5 mm-wide long-length multi-filament, between the filaments of 3 and 5, has been developing by a laser scribing method. In the case of the project target, a 66 kV/20 MVA power transformer coils require a Y-based multi-filament wire between the lengths of 200 m and 300 m. It also must withstand over-current of about seven times the rated current, which is generated when a power system fault occurs. In this paper, over-current characteristics of model coil using Y-based 3-filament wire were evaluated.

  16. Molecular mechanical differences between isoforms of contractile actin in the presence of isoforms of smooth muscle tropomyosin.

    Lennart Hilbert; Genevieve Bates; Roman, Horia N.; Jenna L Blumenthal; Zitouni, Nedjma B.; Apolinary Sobieszek; Mackey, Michael C.; Anne-Marie Lauzon

    2013-01-01

    The proteins involved in smooth muscle's molecular contractile mechanism - the anti-parallel motion of actin and myosin filaments driven by myosin heads interacting with actin - are found as different isoforms. While their expression levels are altered in disease states, their relevance to the mechanical interaction of myosin with actin is not sufficiently understood. Here, we analyzed in vitro actin filament propulsion by smooth muscle myosin for [Formula: see text]-actin ([Formula: see text...

  17. Arginine ADP-ribosylation mechanism based on structural snapshots of iota-toxin and actin complex

    Tsurumura, Toshiharu; Tsumori, Yayoi; Qiu, Hao; Oda, Masataka; Sakurai, Jun; Nagahama, Masahiro; Tsuge, Hideaki

    2012-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens iota-toxin (Ia) mono-ADP ribosylates Arg177 of actin, leading to cytoskeletal disorganization and cell death. To fully understand the reaction mechanism of arginine-specific mono-ADP ribosyl transferase, the structure of the toxin-substrate protein complex must be characterized. Recently, we solved the crystal structure of Ia in complex with actin and the nonhydrolyzable NAD+ analog βTAD (thiazole-4-carboxamide adenine dinucleotide); however, the structures of the NAD+...

  18. Dynamic organization of actin cytoskeleton during the polarity formation and germination of pollen protoplasts

    XU Xia; Zl Huijun; SUN Yina; REN Haiyun

    2004-01-01

    The formation of the polarity of pollen protoplast and the dynamics of actin cytoskeleton were observed by non-fixation, Alexa-Phalloidin probing and confocal laser scanning microscopy. Our results showed that the protoplast obtained from stored pollen contained numerous crystalline fusiform bodies to constitute a storage form of actin. When dormant pollen was hydrated, the actin cytoskeleton forms a fine network spreading uniformly in the protoplast. In the process of polarity formation and germination of pollen protoplast, actin filaments marshaled slowly to the brim, and then formed multilayer continuous actin filament bundles surrounding the cortical of the protoplast. When the protoplast was exposed to actin filament-disrupting drugs, such as Latrunculin A and Cytochalasin D, continuously arranged actin bundles were disturbed and in this condition, the protoplast could not germinate. But when exposed to actin filament stabiling drug-phalliodin, the dynamics of actin filaments in the protoplasts behaved normally and the protoplasts could germinate normally. These results were also confirmed by the pharmacology experiments on pollen grains. And when Latrunculin A or Cytochalasin D was washed off, the ratio of pollen germination was resumed partly. All the results above show that the dynamic organization of the actin cytoskeleton are critical in the cell polarity formation and germination of pollen protoplast, and that the reorganization of actin cytoskeleton is mainly due to the rearrangement of actin filament arrays.

  19. A Role for Nuclear F-Actin Induction in Human Cytomegalovirus Nuclear Egress

    Wilkie, Adrian R.; Lawler, Jessica L.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Herpesviruses, which include important pathogens, remodel the host cell nucleus to facilitate infection. This remodeling includes the formation of structures called replication compartments (RCs) in which herpesviruses replicate their DNA. During infection with the betaherpesvirus, human cytomegalovirus (HCMV), viral DNA synthesis occurs at the periphery of RCs within the nuclear interior, after which assembled capsids must reach the inner nuclear membrane (INM) for translocation to the cytoplasm (nuclear egress). The processes that facilitate movement of HCMV capsids to the INM during nuclear egress are unknown. Although an actin-based mechanism of alphaherpesvirus capsid trafficking to the INM has been proposed, it is controversial. Here, using a fluorescently-tagged, nucleus-localized actin-binding peptide, we show that HCMV, but not herpes simplex virus 1, strongly induced nuclear actin filaments (F-actin) in human fibroblasts. Based on studies using UV inactivation and inhibitors, this induction depended on viral gene expression. Interestingly, by 24 h postinfection, nuclear F-actin formed thicker structures that appeared by super-resolution microscopy to be bundles of filaments. Later in infection, nuclear F-actin primarily localized along the RC periphery and between the RC periphery and the nuclear rim. Importantly, a drug that depolymerized nuclear F-actin caused defects in production of infectious virus, capsid accumulation in the cytoplasm, and capsid localization near the nuclear rim, without decreasing capsid accumulation in the nucleus. Thus, our results suggest that for at least one herpesvirus, nuclear F-actin promotes capsid movement to the nuclear periphery and nuclear egress. We discuss our results in terms of competing models for these processes. PMID:27555312

  20. Structure of the F-actin-tropomyosin complex.

    von der Ecken, Julian; Müller, Mirco; Lehman, William; Manstein, Dietmar J; Penczek, Pawel A; Raunser, Stefan

    2015-03-01

    Filamentous actin (F-actin) is the major protein of muscle thin filaments, and actin microfilaments are the main component of the eukaryotic cytoskeleton. Mutations in different actin isoforms lead to early-onset autosomal dominant non-syndromic hearing loss, familial thoracic aortic aneurysms and dissections, and multiple variations of myopathies. In striated muscle fibres, the binding of myosin motors to actin filaments is mainly regulated by tropomyosin and troponin. Tropomyosin also binds to F-actin in smooth muscle and in non-muscle cells and stabilizes and regulates the filaments there in the absence of troponin. Although crystal structures for monomeric actin (G-actin) are available, a high-resolution structure of F-actin is still missing, hampering our understanding of how disease-causing mutations affect the function of thin muscle filaments and microfilaments. Here we report the three-dimensional structure of F-actin at a resolution of 3.7 Å in complex with tropomyosin at a resolution of 6.5 Å, determined by electron cryomicroscopy. The structure reveals that the D-loop is ordered and acts as a central region for hydrophobic and electrostatic interactions that stabilize the F-actin filament. We clearly identify map density corresponding to ADP and Mg(2+) and explain the possible effect of prominent disease-causing mutants. A comparison of F-actin with G-actin reveals the conformational changes during filament formation and identifies the D-loop as their key mediator. We also confirm that negatively charged tropomyosin interacts with a positively charged groove on F-actin. Comparison of the position of tropomyosin in F-actin-tropomyosin with its position in our previously determined F-actin-tropomyosin-myosin structure reveals a myosin-induced transition of tropomyosin. Our results allow us to understand the role of individual mutations in the genesis of actin- and tropomyosin-related diseases and will serve as a strong foundation for the targeted

  1. The plant actin cytoskeleton responds to signals from microbe-associated molecular patterns.

    Jessica L Henty-Ridilla

    Full Text Available Plants are constantly exposed to a large and diverse array of microbes; however, most plants are immune to the majority of potential invaders and susceptible to only a small subset of pathogens. The cytoskeleton comprises a dynamic intracellular framework that responds rapidly to biotic stresses and supports numerous fundamental cellular processes including vesicle trafficking, endocytosis and the spatial distribution of organelles and protein complexes. For years, the actin cytoskeleton has been assumed to play a role in plant innate immunity against fungi and oomycetes, based largely on static images and pharmacological studies. To date, however, there is little evidence that the host-cell actin cytoskeleton participates in responses to phytopathogenic bacteria. Here, we quantified the spatiotemporal changes in host-cell cytoskeletal architecture during the immune response to pathogenic and non-pathogenic strains of Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato DC3000. Two distinct changes to host cytoskeletal arrays were observed that correspond to distinct phases of plant-bacterial interactions i.e. the perception of microbe-associated molecular patterns (MAMPs during pattern-triggered immunity (PTI and perturbations by effector proteins during effector-triggered susceptibility (ETS. We demonstrate that an immediate increase in actin filament abundance is a conserved and novel component of PTI. Notably, treatment of leaves with a MAMP peptide mimic was sufficient to elicit a rapid change in actin organization in epidermal cells, and this actin response required the host-cell MAMP receptor kinase complex, including FLS2, BAK1 and BIK1. Finally, we found that actin polymerization is necessary for the increase in actin filament density and that blocking this increase with the actin-disrupting drug latrunculin B leads to enhanced susceptibility of host plants to pathogenic and non-pathogenic bacteria.

  2. Structure-based analysis of high pressure adaptation of alpha-actin.

    Morita, Takami

    2003-07-25

    Deep-sea fishes occur to depths of several thousand meters, and at these abyssal depths encounter pressures that shallower living fishes cannot tolerate. Tolerance of abyssal pressures by deep-sea fish is likely to depend in part on adaptive modifications of proteins. However, the types of structural modifications to proteins that allow function at high pressure have not been discovered. To elucidate the mechanisms of protein adaptation to high pressure, we cloned the alpha-skeletal actin cDNAs from two abyssal Coryphaenoides species, C. armatus and C. yaquinae, and identified three amino acid substitutions, V54A or L67P, Q137K, and A155S, that distinguish these abyssal actins from orthologs of alpha-actin from non-abyssal Coryphaenoides. These substitutions, Q137K and A155S, prevent the dissociation reactions of ATP and Ca2+ from being influenced by high pressure. In particular, the lysine residue at position 137 results in a much smaller apparent volume change in the Ca2+ dissociation reaction. The V54A or L67P substitution reduces the volume change associated with actin polymerization and has a role in maintaining the DNase I activity of actin at high pressure. Together, these results indicate that a few amino acid substitutions in key functional positions can adaptively alter the pressure sensitivity of a protein. PMID:12740368

  3. Titin Based Viscosity in Ventricular Physiology: An Integrative Investigation of PEVK-Actin Interactions

    Chung, Charles S; Methawasin, Methajit; Nelson, O Lynne; Radke, Michael H; Hidalgo, Carlos G; Gotthardt, Michael; Granzier, Henk L

    2011-01-01

    Viscosity is proposed to modulate diastolic function, but only limited understanding of the source(s) of viscosity exists. In-vitro experiments have shown that the proline-glutamic acid-valine-lysine (PEVK) rich element of titin interacts with actin, causing a viscous force in the sarcomere. It is unknown whether this mechanism contributes to viscosity in-vivo. We tested the hypothesis that PEVK-actin interaction causes cardiac viscosity and is important in-vivo via an integrative physiological study on a unique PEVK-knockout (KO) model. Both skinned cardiomyocytes and papillary muscle fibers were isolated from wildtype (WT) and PEVK KO mice and passive viscosity was examined using stretch-hold-release and sinusoidal analysis. Viscosity was reduced by ~60% in KO myocytes and ~50% in muscle fibers at room temperature. The PEVK-actin interaction was not modulated by temperature or diastolic calcium, but was increased by lattice compression. Stretch-hold and sinusoidal frequency protocols on intact isolated mouse hearts showed a smaller, 30–40% reduction in viscosity, possibly due to actomyosin interactions, and showed that microtubules did not contribute to viscosity. Transmitral Doppler echocardiography similarly revealed a 40% decrease in LV chamber viscosity in the PEVK KO in-vivo. This integrative study is the first to quantify the influence of a specific molecular (PEVK-actin) viscosity in-vivo and shows that PEVK-actin interactions are an important physiological source of viscosity. PMID:21708170

  4. [Cytoskeletal actin and its associated proteins. Some examples in Protista].

    Guillén, N; Carlier, M F; Brugerolle, G; Tardieux, I; Ausseil, J

    1998-06-01

    Many processes, cell motility being an example, require cells to remodel the actin cytoskeleton in response to both intracellular and extracellular signals. Reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton involves the rapid disassembly and reassembly of actin filaments, a phenomenon regulated by the action of particular actin-binding proteins. In recent years, an interest in studying actin regulation in unicellular organisms has arisen. Parasitic protozoan are among these organisms and studies of the cytoskeleton functions of these protozoan are relevant related to either cell biology or pathogenicity. To discuss recent data in this field, a symposium concerning "Actin and actin-binding proteins in protists" was held on May 8-11 in Paris, France, during the XXXV meeting of the French Society of Protistology. As a brief summary of the symposium we report here findings concerning the in vitro actin dynamic assembly, as well as the characterization of several actin-binding proteins from the parasitic protozoan Entamoeba histolytica, Trichomonas vaginalis and Plasmodium knowlesi. In addition, localization of actin in non-pathogen protists such as Prorocentrum micans and Crypthecodinium cohnii is also presented. The data show that some actin-binding proteins facilitate organization of filaments into higher order structures as pseudopods, while others have regulatory functions, indicating very particular roles for actin-binding proteins. One of the proteins discussed during the symposium, the actin depolymerizing factor ADF, was shown to enhance the treadmilling rate of actin filaments. In vitro, ADF binds to the ADP-bound forms of G-actin and F-actin, thereby participating in and changing the rate of actin assembly. Biochemical approaches allowed the identification of a protein complex formed by HSP/C70-cap32-34 which might also be involved in depolymerization of F-actin in P. knowlesi. Molecular and cellular approaches were used to identify proteins such as ABP-120 and myosin

  5. Frealix: Model-based refinement of helical filament structures from electron micrographs

    Rohou, Alexis; Grigorieff, Nikolaus

    2014-01-01

    The structures of many helical protein filaments can be derived from electron micrographs of their suspensions in thin films of vitrified aqueous solutions. The most successful and generally-applicable approach treats short segments of these filaments as independent “single particles”, yielding near-atomic resolution for rigid and well-ordered filaments. The single-particle approach can also accommodate filament deformations, yielding sub-nanometer resolution for more flexible filaments. Howe...

  6. 2',3'-Cyclic nucleotide 3'-phosphodiesterase binds to actin-based cytoskeletal elements in an isoprenylation-independent manner.

    De Angelis, D A; Braun, P E

    1996-09-01

    2',3'-Cyclic nucleotide 3'-phosphodiesterase (CNP) is an isoprenylated protein enriched in myelin and oligodendrocytes but also present in several other tissues at low levels. CNP binds avidly to membranes and in addition possesses several characteristics of cytoskeletal proteins. The role of isoprenylation in the association of CNP with the cytoskeleton was analyzed by ectopic expression in L cells of epitope-tagged CNP1 and a non-isoprenylated mutant CNP1. Using nonionic detergent extraction, drug-mediated cytoskeletal disruption, and coimmunoprecipitation with an anti-actin antibody, we show that CNP1 is associated with actin-based cytoskeletal elements independently of its isoprenylation status. A control protein, p21c-H-ras, which is also modified by isoprenylation at its carboxyl-terminus, does not bind to cytoskeletal structures as judged by the same criteria. We present a model that accounts for the association of CNP1 with membranes and the cytoskeleton. PMID:8752099

  7. Ultraviolet actinic flux in clear and cloudy atmospheres: model calculations and aircraft-based measurements

    G. G. Palancar

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Ultraviolet (UV actinic fluxes measured with two Scanning Actinic Flux Spectroradiometers (SAFS aboard the NASA DC-8 aircraft are compared with the Tropospheric Ultraviolet-Visible (TUV model. The observations from 17 days in July–August 2004 (INTEX-NA field campaign span a wide range of latitudes (27.5° N–53.0° N, longitudes (45.1° W–139.5° W, altitudes (0.1–11.9 km, ozone columns (285.4–352.7 DU, and solar zenith angles (1.7°–85°. Both cloudy and cloud-free conditions were encountered. For cloud-free conditions, the ratio of observed to clear-sky-model actinic flux (integrated from 298 to 422 nm is 1.01±0.04, i.e. in good agreement with observations. The agreement improves to 1.00±0.03 for the down-welling component under clear sky conditions. In the presence of clouds, both down-welling and up-welling components show reductions or enhancements from clear sky values, depending on the position of the airplane relative to clouds. The correlations between up-welling and down-welling deviations are well reproduced with sensitivity studies using the TUV model, and are understood qualitatively with a simple conceptual model. This analysis of actinic flux observations illustrates opportunities for future evaluations of photolysis rates in three-dimensional chemistry-transport models.

  8. Actin dynamics and the elasticity of cytoskeletal networks

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available The structural integrity of a cell depends on its cytoskeleton, which includes an actin network. This network is transient and depends upon the continual polymerization and depolymerization of actin. The degradation of an actin network, and a corresponding reduction in cell stiffness, can indicate the presence of disease. Numerical simulations will be invaluable for understanding the physics of these systems and the correlation between actin dynamics and elasticity. Here we develop a model that is capable of generating actin network structures. In particular, we develop a model of actin dynamics which considers the polymerization, depolymerization, nucleation, severing, and capping of actin filaments. The structures obtained are then fed directly into a mechanical model. This allows us to qualitatively assess the effects of changing various parameters associated with actin dynamics on the elasticity of the material.

  9. Computational analysis of viscoelastic properties of crosslinked actin networks.

    Taeyoon Kim

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available Mechanical force plays an important role in the physiology of eukaryotic cells whose dominant structural constituent is the actin cytoskeleton composed mainly of actin and actin crosslinking proteins (ACPs. Thus, knowledge of rheological properties of actin networks is crucial for understanding the mechanics and processes of cells. We used Brownian dynamics simulations to study the viscoelasticity of crosslinked actin networks. Two methods were employed, bulk rheology and segment-tracking rheology, where the former measures the stress in response to an applied shear strain, and the latter analyzes thermal fluctuations of individual actin segments of the network. It was demonstrated that the storage shear modulus (G' increases more by the addition of ACPs that form orthogonal crosslinks than by those that form parallel bundles. In networks with orthogonal crosslinks, as crosslink density increases, the power law exponent of G' as a function of the oscillation frequency decreases from 0.75, which reflects the transverse thermal motion of actin filaments, to near zero at low frequency. Under increasing prestrain, the network becomes more elastic, and three regimes of behavior are observed, each dominated by different mechanisms: bending of actin filaments, bending of ACPs, and at the highest prestrain tested (55%, stretching of actin filaments and ACPs. In the last case, only a small portion of actin filaments connected via highly stressed ACPs support the strain. We thus introduce the concept of a 'supportive framework,' as a subset of the full network, which is responsible for high elasticity. Notably, entropic effects due to thermal fluctuations appear to be important only at relatively low prestrains and when the average crosslinking distance is comparable to or greater than the persistence length of the filament. Taken together, our results suggest that viscoelasticity of the actin network is attributable to different mechanisms depending on

  10. Computer Simulations of Mechano-Chemical Networks Choreographing Actin Dynamics in Cell Motility

    Zhuravlev, Pavel I.; Hu, Longhua; Papoian, Garegin A.

    In eukaryotic cells, cell motility is largely driven by self-assembly and growth of filamentous networks comprised of actin. Numerous proteins regulate actin network dynamics either biochemically, or through mechanical interactions. This regulation is rather complex, intricately coordinated both spatially and temporally. Although experiments in vivo and in vitro have provided a trove of structural and biochemical information about actin-based cell motility processes, experimental data is not always easy to interpret unambiguously, sometimes various interpretations being in contradiction with each other. Hence, mathematical modeling approaches are necessary for providing a physical foundation for interpreting and guiding experiments. In particular, computer simulations based on physicochemical interactions provide a systems-level description of protrusion dynamics. In this contribution, we review recent progress in modeling actin-based cell motility using detailed computer simulations. We elaborate on the way actin network dynamics is determined by the interplay between chemical reactions, mechanical feedbacks, and transport bottlenecks. We also discuss the role of inherent randomness of elementary chemical reactions in determining the dynamical behavior of the mechano-chemical network controlling actin polymerization and growth.

  11. The structural dynamics of α-tropomyosin on F-actin shape the overlap complex between adjacent tropomyosin molecules

    Lehman, William; Li, Xiaochuan; Orzechowski, Marek; Fischer, Stefan

    2013-01-01

    Coiled-coil tropomyosin, localized on actin filaments in virtually all eukaryotic cells, serves as a gatekeeper regulating access of the motor protein myosin and other actin-binding proteins onto the thin filament surface. Tropomyosin's modular pseudo-repeating pattern of approximately 39 amino acid residues is designed to allow binding of the coiled-coil to successive actin subunits along thin filaments. Even though different tropomyosin isoforms contain varying numbers of repeat modules, th...

  12. Direct observation of anodic dissolution and filament growth behavior in polyethylene-oxide-based atomic switch structures

    Krishnan, Karthik; Tsuruoka, Tohru; Aono, Masakazu

    2016-06-01

    We directly observed anodic dissolution and subsequent filament growth behavior in a planar atomic switch structure with Ag salt incorporated polyethylene oxide (Ag-PEO) film using in situ optical microscopy and ex situ scanning electron microscopy. The high ionic conductivities of Ag-PEO films enable the investigation of filament formation under voltage bias, even in micrometer-scaled devices. It was found that the filament formation changes from unidirectional growth to dendritic growth, depending on its distance from the grounded electrode. Based on this understanding of filament growth dynamics in planar devices, highly stable resistive switching was achieved in an Ag/Ag-PEO/Pt stacked device with an Ag-PEO film thickness of 100 nm. The device showed repeated switching operations for more than 102 sweep cycles, with a high ON/OFF resistance ratio of 105.

  13. Polarity protein Crumbs homolog-3 (CRB3) regulates ectoplasmic specialization dynamics through its action on F-actin organization in Sertoli cells

    Gao, Ying; Lui, Wing-yee; Lee, Will M.; Cheng, C. Yan

    2016-01-01

    Crumbs homolog 3 (or Crumbs3, CRB3) is a polarity protein expressed by Sertoli and germ cells at the basal compartment in the seminiferous epithelium. CRB3 also expressed at the blood-testis barrier (BTB), co-localized with F-actin, TJ proteins occludin/ZO-1 and basal ES (ectoplasmic specialization) proteins N-cadherin/β-catenin at stages IV-VII only. The binding partners of CRB3 in the testis were the branched actin polymerization protein Arp3, and the barbed end-capping and bundling protein Eps8, illustrating its possible role in actin organization. CRB3 knockdown (KD) by RNAi in Sertoli cells with an established tight junction (TJ)-permeability barrier perturbed the TJ-barrier via changes in the distribution of TJ- and basal ES-proteins at the cell-cell interface. These changes were the result of CRB3 KD-induced re-organization of actin microfilaments, in which actin microfilaments were truncated, and extensively branched, thereby destabilizing F-actin-based adhesion protein complexes at the BTB. Using Polyplus in vivo-jetPEI as a transfection medium with high efficiency for CRB3 KD in the testis, the CRB3 KD testes displayed defects in spermatid and phagosome transport, and also spermatid polarity due to a disruption of F-actin organization. In summary, CRB3 is an actin microfilament regulator, playing a pivotal role in organizing actin filament bundles at the ES. PMID:27358069

  14. Experimental and computational assessment of F-actin influence in regulating cellular stiffness and relaxation behaviour of fibroblasts.

    Fallqvist, Björn; Fielden, Matthew L; Pettersson, Torbjörn; Nordgren, Niklas; Kroon, Martin; Gad, Annica K B

    2016-06-01

    In biomechanics, a complete understanding of the structures and mechanisms that regulate cellular stiffness at a molecular level remain elusive. In this paper, we have elucidated the role of filamentous actin (F-actin) in regulating elastic and viscous properties of the cytoplasm and the nucleus. Specifically, we performed colloidal-probe atomic force microscopy (AFM) on BjhTERT fibroblast cells incubated with Latrunculin B (LatB), which results in depolymerisation of F-actin, or DMSO control. We found that the treatment with LatB not only reduced cellular stiffness, but also greatly increased the relaxation rate for the cytoplasm in the peripheral region and in the vicinity of the nucleus. We thus conclude that F-actin is a major determinant in not only providing elastic stiffness to the cell, but also in regulating its viscous behaviour. To further investigate the interdependence of different cytoskeletal networks and cell shape, we provided a computational model in a finite element framework. The computational model is based on a split strain energy function of separate cellular constituents, here assumed to be cytoskeletal components, for which a composite strain energy function was defined. We found a significant influence of cell geometry on the predicted mechanical response. Importantly, the relaxation behaviour of the cell can be characterised by a material model with two time constants that have previously been found to predict mechanical behaviour of actin and intermediate filament networks. By merely tuning two effective stiffness parameters, the model predicts experimental results in cells with a partly depolymerised actin cytoskeleton as well as in untreated control. This indicates that actin and intermediate filament networks are instrumental in providing elastic stiffness in response to applied forces, as well as governing the relaxation behaviour over shorter and longer time-scales, respectively. PMID:26766328

  15. Non-Lytic, Actin-Based Exit of Intracellular Parasites from C. elegans Intestinal Cells

    Estes, Kathleen A.; Szumowski, Suzannah C.; Troemel, Emily R.

    2011-01-01

    The intestine is a common site for invasion by intracellular pathogens, but little is known about how pathogens restructure and exit intestinal cells in vivo. The natural microsporidian parasite N. parisii invades intestinal cells of the nematode C. elegans, progresses through its life cycle, and then exits cells in a transmissible spore form. Here we show that N. parisii causes rearrangements of host actin inside intestinal cells as part of a novel parasite exit strategy. First, we show that...

  16. Genetic Identification of Trichomonas vaginalis by Using the Actin Gene and Molecular Based Methods

    Mohammad Matini; Sassan Rezaie; Mahdi Mohebali; Amir-Hossein Maghsood; Soghra Rabiee; Mohammad Fallah; Mostafa Rezaeian

    2014-01-01

    Background Trichomonas vaginalis is the agent of urogenital tract infection that causes human trichomoniasis with some serious health complications. More understanding about genetic features of the parasite can be helpful in the study of the pathogenesis, drug susceptibility and epidemiology of the infection. For this end, we conducted analysis of the actin gene of T. vaginalis by applying the PCR-SSCP (PCR-Single Stranded Conformational Polymorphism) and nucleotide sequencing method. Methods...

  17. Arabidopsis AtADF1 is Functionally Affected by Mutations on Actin Binding Sites

    Chun-Hai Dong; Wei-Ping Tang; Jia-Yao Liu

    2013-01-01

    The plant actin depolymerizing factor (ADF) binds to both monomeric and filamentous actin,and is directly involved in the depolymerization of actin filaments.To better understand the actin binding sites of the Arabidopsis thaliana L.AtADF1,we generated mutants of AtADF1 and investigated their functions in vitro and in vivo.Analysis of mutants harboring amino acid substitutions revealed that charged residues (Arg98 and Lys100) located at the α-helix 3 and forming an actin binding site together with the N-terminus are essential for both G-and F-actin binding.The basic residues on the β-strand 5 (K82/A) and the α-helix 4 (R135/A,R137/A) form another actin binding site that is important for F-actin binding.Using transient expression of CFP-tagged AtADF1 mutant proteins in onion (Allium cepa) peel epidermal cells and transgenic Arabidopsis thaliana L.plants overexpressing these mutants,we analyzed how these mutant proteins regulate actin organization and affect seedling growth.Our results show that the ADF mutants with a lower affinity for actin filament binding can still be functional,unless the affinity foractin monomers is also affected.The G-actin binding activity of the ADF plays an essential role in actin binding,depolymerization of actin polymers,and therefore in the control of actin organization.

  18. Genetic Identification of Trichomonas vaginalis by Using the Actin Gene and Molecular Based Methods.

    Mohammad Matini

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Trichomonas vaginalis is the agent of urogenital tract infection that causes human trichomoniasis with some serious health complications. More understanding about genetic features of the parasite can be helpful in the study of the pathogenesis, drug susceptibility and epidemiology of the infection. For this end, we conducted analysis of the actin gene of T. vaginalis by applying the PCR-SSCP (PCR-Single Stranded Conformational Polymorphism and nucleotide sequencing method.Fifty T. vaginalis samples were collected from 950 women attending gynecology clinics in two cities of Iran, Hamadan and Tehran, from November 2010 to July 2011. After axenisation of isolates, all samples subjected to PCR-SSCP and nucleotide sequencing.According to the SSCP banding patterns and nucleotide sequencing, seven sequence types were detected among the isolates. Alignment of the nucleotide sequences showed five polymorphic sites in the different strain types. Amino acid substitution was not observed in the nucleotide sequence translation of the all sequences.The actin gene analysis represents genetic diversity of T. vaginalis and it suggests that various strains can be responsible for clinically different trichomoniasis in infected individuals. It is expected that further studies will be conducted to increase our knowledge about relationship between the actin gene polymorphism and different biological behavior of the parasite.

  19. High-throughput screening of filamentous fungi using nanoliter-range droplet-based microfluidics

    Beneyton, Thomas; Wijaya, I. Putu Mahendra; Postros, Prexilia; Najah, Majdi; Leblond, Pascal; Couvent, Angélique; Mayot, Estelle; Griffiths, Andrew D.; Drevelle, Antoine

    2016-06-01

    Filamentous fungi are an extremely important source of industrial enzymes because of their capacity to secrete large quantities of proteins. Currently, functional screening of fungi is associated with low throughput and high costs, which severely limits the discovery of novel enzymatic activities and better production strains. Here, we describe a nanoliter-range droplet-based microfluidic system specially adapted for the high-throughput sceening (HTS) of large filamentous fungi libraries for secreted enzyme activities. The platform allowed (i) compartmentalization of single spores in ~10 nl droplets, (ii) germination and mycelium growth and (iii) high-throughput sorting of fungi based on enzymatic activity. A 104 clone UV-mutated library of Aspergillus niger was screened based on α-amylase activity in just 90 minutes. Active clones were enriched 196-fold after a single round of microfluidic HTS. The platform is a powerful tool for the development of new production strains with low cost, space and time footprint and should bring enormous benefit for improving the viability of biotechnological processes.

  20. Uncorrelated multiple conductive filament nucleation and rupture in ultra-thin high-κ dielectric based resistive random access memory

    Wu, Xing

    2011-08-29

    Resistive switching in transition metal oxides could form the basis for next-generation non-volatile memory (NVM). It has been reported that the current in the high-conductivity state of several technologically relevant oxide materials flows through localized filaments, but these filaments have been characterized only individually, limiting our understanding of the possibility of multiple conductive filaments nucleation and rupture and the correlation kinetics of their evolution. In this study, direct visualization of uncorrelated multiple conductive filaments in ultra-thin HfO2-based high-κ dielectricresistive random access memory (RRAM) device has been achieved by high-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM), along with electron energy loss spectroscopy(EELS), for nanoscale chemical analysis. The locations of these multiple filaments are found to be spatially uncorrelated. The evolution of these microstructural changes and chemical properties of these filaments will provide a fundamental understanding of the switching mechanism for RRAM in thin oxide films and pave way for the investigation into improving the stability and scalability of switching memory devices.

  1. Spontaneous actin dynamics in contractile rings

    Kruse, Karsten; Wollrab, Viktoria; Thiagarajan, Raghavan; Wald, Anne; Riveline, Daniel

    Networks of polymerizing actin filaments are known to be capable to self-organize into a variety of structures. For example, spontaneous actin polymerization waves have been observed in living cells in a number of circumstances, notably, in crawling neutrophils and slime molds. During later stages of cell division, they can also spontaneously form a contractile ring that will eventually cleave the cell into two daughter cells. We present a framework for describing networks of polymerizing actin filaments, where assembly is regulated by various proteins. It can also include the effects of molecular motors. We show that the molecular processes driven by these proteins can generate various structures that have been observed in contractile rings of fission yeast and mammalian cells. We discuss a possible functional role of each of these patterns. The work was supported by Agence Nationale de la Recherche, France, (ANR-10-LABX-0030-INRT) and by Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft through SFB1027.

  2. Actin-dependent vacuolar occupancy of the cell determines auxin-induced growth repression

    Scheuring, David; Löfke, Christian; Krüger, Falco; Kittelmann, Maike; Eisa, Ahmed; Hughes, Louise; Smith, Richard S.; Hawes, Chris; Schumacher, Karin; Kleine-Vehn, Jürgen

    2016-01-01

    The cytoskeleton is an early attribute of cellular life, and its main components are composed of conserved proteins. The actin cytoskeleton has a direct impact on the control of cell size in animal cells, but its mechanistic contribution to cellular growth in plants remains largely elusive. Here, we reveal a role of actin in regulating cell size in plants. The actin cytoskeleton shows proximity to vacuoles, and the phytohormone auxin not only controls the organization of actin filaments but also impacts vacuolar morphogenesis in an actin-dependent manner. Pharmacological and genetic interference with the actin–myosin system abolishes the effect of auxin on vacuoles and thus disrupts its negative influence on cellular growth. SEM-based 3D nanometer-resolution imaging of the vacuoles revealed that auxin controls the constriction and luminal size of the vacuole. We show that this actin-dependent mechanism controls the relative vacuolar occupancy of the cell, thus suggesting an unanticipated mechanism for cytosol homeostasis during cellular growth. PMID:26715743

  3. The Structural Basis of Actin Organization by Vinculin and Metavinculin.

    Kim, Laura Y; Thompson, Peter M; Lee, Hyunna T; Pershad, Mihir; Campbell, Sharon L; Alushin, Gregory M

    2016-01-16

    Vinculin is an essential adhesion protein that links membrane-bound integrin and cadherin receptors through their intracellular binding partners to filamentous actin, facilitating mechanotransduction. Here we present an 8.5-Å-resolution cryo-electron microscopy reconstruction and pseudo-atomic model of the vinculin tail (Vt) domain bound to F-actin. Upon actin engagement, the N-terminal "strap" and helix 1 are displaced from the Vt helical bundle to mediate actin bundling. We find that an analogous conformational change also occurs in the H1' helix of the tail domain of metavinculin (MVt) upon actin binding, a muscle-specific splice isoform that suppresses actin bundling by Vt. These data support a model in which metavinculin tunes the actin bundling activity of vinculin in a tissue-specific manner, providing a mechanistic framework for understanding metavinculin mutations associated with hereditary cardiomyopathies. PMID:26493222

  4. Thin Filament Structure and the Steric Blocking Model.

    Lehman, William

    2016-04-01

    By interacting with the troponin-tropomyosin complex on myofibrillar thin filaments, Ca2+ and myosin govern the regulatory switching processes influencing contractile activity of mammalian cardiac and skeletal muscles. A possible explanation of the roles played by Ca2+ and myosin emerged in the early 1970s when a compelling "steric model" began to gain traction as a likely mechanism accounting for muscle regulation. In its most simple form, the model holds that, under the control of Ca2+ binding to troponin and myosin binding to actin, tropomyosin strands running along thin filaments either block myosin-binding sites on actin when muscles are relaxed or move away from them when muscles are activated. Evidence for the steric model was initially based on interpretation of subtle changes observed in X-ray fiber diffraction patterns of intact skeletal muscle preparations. Over the past 25 years, electron microscopy coupled with three-dimensional reconstruction directly resolved thin filament organization under many experimental conditions and at increasingly higher resolution. At low-Ca2+, tropomyosin was shown to occupy a "blocked-state" position on the filament, and switched-on in a two-step process, involving first a movement of tropomyosin away from the majority of the myosin-binding site as Ca2+ binds to troponin and then a further movement to fully expose the site when small numbers of myosin heads bind to actin. In this contribution, basic information on Ca2+-regulation of muscle contraction is provided. A description is then given relating the voyage of discovery taken to arrive at the present understanding of the steric regulatory model. PMID:27065174

  5. Part I---Evaluating Effects of Oligomer Formation on Cytochrome P450 2C9 Electron Transfer and Drug Metabolism, Part II---Utilizing Molecular Modeling Techniques to Study the Src-Interacting Proteins Actin Filament Associated Protein of 110 kDa (AFAP-110) and Cortactin

    Jett, John Edward, Jr.

    The dissertation has been divided into two parts to accurately reflect the two distinct areas of interest pursued during my matriculation in the School of Pharmacy at West Virginia University. In Part I, I discuss research probing the nature of electron transfer in the Cytochrome P450 family of proteins, a group of proteins well-known for their role in drug metabolism. In Part II, I focus on in silico and in vitro work developed in concert to probe protein structure and protein-protein interactions involved in actin filament reorganization and cellular motility. Part I. Cytochrome P450s (P450s) are an important class of enzymes known to metabolize a variety of endogenous and xenobiotic compounds. P450s are most commonly found in liver and intestinal endothelial cells and are responsible for the metabolism of approximately 75% of pharmaceutical drugs on the market. CYP2C9---one of the six major P450 isoforms---is responsible for ˜20% of drug metabolism. Elucidation of the factors that affect in vitro drug metabolism is crucial to the accurate prediction of in vivo drug metabolism kinetics. Currently, the two major techniques for studying in vitro drug metabolism are solution-based. However, it is known that the results of solution-based studies can vary from in vivo drug metabolism. One reason suggested to account for this variation is the state of P450 oligomer formation in solution compared to the in vivo environment, where P450s are membrane-bound. To understand the details of how oligomer formation affects in vitro drug metabolism, it is imperative that techniques be developed which will allow for the unequivocal control of oligomer formation without altering other experimental parameters. Our long term goal of this research is to develop methods to more accurately predict in vivo drug metabolism from in vitro data. This section of the dissertation will discuss the development of a platform consisting of a doped silicon surface containing a large array of gold

  6. Mechanical force-induced polymerization and depolymerization of F-actin at water/solid interfaces

    Zhang, Xueqiang; Hu, Xiuyuan; Lei, Haozhi; Hu, Jun; Zhang, Yi

    2016-03-01

    Actin molecules are among the three main cytoskeleton proteins of cells and undergo rapid cycling to regulate critical processes such as endocytosis, cytokinesis, cell polarity, and cell morphogenesis. Although extensive studies have been carried out on the dynamics as well as biological functions of actin polymerization and depolymerization both in vivo and in vitro, the molecular mechanisms by which cells sense and respond to mechanical signals are not fully understood. In particular, little attention has been paid to the effect of a physical force that is exerted directly on the actin cytoskeleton. In this paper, we have explored how the mechanical force affects the actin polymerization and depolymerization behaviors at water/solid interfaces using an atomic force microscope (AFM) operated in liquid. By raster scanning an AFM probe on a substrate surface with a certain load, it was found that actin monomers could polymerize into filaments without the help of actin related proteins (ARPs). Further study indicated that actin monomers were inclined to form filaments only under a small scanning load. The polymerized actin filaments would be depolymerized when the mechanical force was stronger. A possible mechanism has been suggested to explain the mechanical force induced actin polymerization.Actin molecules are among the three main cytoskeleton proteins of cells and undergo rapid cycling to regulate critical processes such as endocytosis, cytokinesis, cell polarity, and cell morphogenesis. Although extensive studies have been carried out on the dynamics as well as biological functions of actin polymerization and depolymerization both in vivo and in vitro, the molecular mechanisms by which cells sense and respond to mechanical signals are not fully understood. In particular, little attention has been paid to the effect of a physical force that is exerted directly on the actin cytoskeleton. In this paper, we have explored how the mechanical force affects the actin

  7. Frealix: model-based refinement of helical filament structures from electron micrographs.

    Rohou, Alexis; Grigorieff, Nikolaus

    2014-05-01

    The structures of many helical protein filaments can be derived from electron micrographs of their suspensions in thin films of vitrified aqueous solutions. The most successful and generally-applicable approach treats short segments of these filaments as independent "single particles", yielding near-atomic resolution for rigid and well-ordered filaments. The single-particle approach can also accommodate filament deformations, yielding sub-nanometer resolution for more flexible filaments. However, in the case of thin and flexible filaments, such as some amyloid-β (Aβ) fibrils, the single-particle approach may fail because helical segments can be curved or otherwise distorted and their alignment can be inaccurate due to low contrast in the micrographs. We developed new software called Frealix that allows the use of arbitrarily short filament segments during alignment to approximate even high curvatures. All segments in a filament are aligned simultaneously with constraints that ensure that they connect to each other in space to form a continuous helical structure. In this paper, we describe the algorithm and benchmark it against datasets of Aβ(1-40) fibrils and tobacco mosaic virus (TMV), both analyzed in earlier work. In the case of TMV, our algorithm achieves similar results to single-particle analysis. In the case of Aβ(1-40) fibrils, we match the previously-obtained resolution but we are also able to obtain reliable alignments and ∼8-Å reconstructions from curved filaments. Our algorithm also offers a detailed characterization of filament deformations in three dimensions and enables a critical evaluation of the worm-like chain model for biological filaments. PMID:24657230

  8. Automatic optimal filament segmentation with sub-pixel accuracy using generalized linear models and B-spline level-sets.

    Xiao, Xun; Geyer, Veikko F; Bowne-Anderson, Hugo; Howard, Jonathon; Sbalzarini, Ivo F

    2016-08-01

    Biological filaments, such as actin filaments, microtubules, and cilia, are often imaged using different light-microscopy techniques. Reconstructing the filament curve from the acquired images constitutes the filament segmentation problem. Since filaments have lower dimensionality than the image itself, there is an inherent trade-off between tracing the filament with sub-pixel accuracy and avoiding noise artifacts. Here, we present a globally optimal filament segmentation method based on B-spline vector level-sets and a generalized linear model for the pixel intensity statistics. We show that the resulting optimization problem is convex and can hence be solved with global optimality. We introduce a simple and efficient algorithm to compute such optimal filament segmentations, and provide an open-source implementation as an ImageJ/Fiji plugin. We further derive an information-theoretic lower bound on the filament segmentation error, quantifying how well an algorithm could possibly do given the information in the image. We show that our algorithm asymptotically reaches this bound in the spline coefficients. We validate our method in comprehensive benchmarks, compare with other methods, and show applications from fluorescence, phase-contrast, and dark-field microscopy. PMID:27104582

  9. Threshold energies for filamentation and spectral characteristics of supercontinuum generation in THEOS-based nanocomposite organosilicon media

    We have experimentally determined the threshold energy for filamentation in THEOS-based hybrid silicate nanocomposite materials containing polysaccharides and hyperbranched polyglycidols and the conversion efficiency from the 800-nm femtosecond Ti : sapphire laser output to a supercontinuum in the range 420 – 700 nm. The addition of sodium hyaluronate (polysaccharide) and low concentrations of Au nanoparticles or CdS quantum dots with an average diameter of 3 – 5 nm has been shown to considerably reduce the threshold energy for filamentation and improve the laser output to supercontinuum conversion efficiency. (extreme light fields and their applications)

  10. Threshold energies for filamentation and spectral characteristics of supercontinuum generation in THEOS-based nanocomposite organosilicon media

    Kul' chin, Yu N; Mayor, A Yu; Proschenko, D Yu; Chekhlenok, A A; Golik, S S [Institute for Automation and Control Processes, Far-Eastern Branch, Russian Academy of Sciences, Vladivostok (Russian Federation); Postnova, I V; Shchipunov, Yu A [Institute of Chemistry, Far East Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Vladivostok (Russian Federation); Bukin, O A [G.I. Nevelskoi Maritime State University, Vladivostok (Russian Federation)

    2014-08-31

    We have experimentally determined the threshold energy for filamentation in THEOS-based hybrid silicate nanocomposite materials containing polysaccharides and hyperbranched polyglycidols and the conversion efficiency from the 800-nm femtosecond Ti : sapphire laser output to a supercontinuum in the range 420 – 700 nm. The addition of sodium hyaluronate (polysaccharide) and low concentrations of Au nanoparticles or CdS quantum dots with an average diameter of 3 – 5 nm has been shown to considerably reduce the threshold energy for filamentation and improve the laser output to supercontinuum conversion efficiency. (extreme light fields and their applications)

  11. Dimeric WH2 repeats of VopF sequester actin monomers into non-nucleating linear string conformations: An X-ray scattering study.

    Avvaru, Balendu Sankara; Pernier, Julien; Carlier, Marie-France

    2015-05-01

    VopF and VopL are highly similar virulence-factors of Vibrio cholerae and Vibrio parahaemolyticus respectively that disrupt the host's actin cytoskeleton, using a unique organization in dimerized WH2 repeats. Association of dimerized WH2 domains with the barbed face of actin confers multifunctional activities to VopF in vitro, including G-actin sequestration and filament nucleation, barbed end tracking and uncapping. Here, small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) measurements of complexes of VopF with actin and structural modeling reveal that VopF stabilizes linear actin-strings that differ from canonical actin filament architectures but represent non-polymerizable sequestered forms of actin. The results exclude that VopL binds the pointed end of actin filaments in the template filament nucleation mechanism derived from crystallographic studies. PMID:25818509

  12. Transition to superdiffusive behavior in intracellular actin-based transport mediated by molecular motors

    Bruno, L; Brunstein, M; Despósito, M A

    2009-01-01

    Intracellular transport of large cargoes, such as organelles, vesicles or large proteins, is a complex dynamical process that involves the interplay of ATP-consuming molecular motors, cytoskeleton filaments and the viscoelastic cytoplasm. The displacements of particles or probes in the cell cytoplasm as a function of time are characterized by different (anomalous) diffusion regimes. We investigate here the motion of pigment organelles (melanosomes) driven by myosin-V motors in \\emph{Xenopus laevis} melanocytes using a high spatio-temporal resolution tracking technique. By analyzing the mean square displacement (MSD) of the obtained trajectories as a function of the time lag, we show that the melanosomes display a transition between subdiffusive to superdiffusive behavior. A stochastic theoretical model is introduced to generalize the interpretation of our data. Starting from a generalized Langevin equation that explicitly considers the collective action of the molecular motors we derive an analytical expressi...

  13. Crossing Filaments

    Filippov, Boris

    2011-01-01

    Solar filaments show the position of large scale polarity inversion lines and are used for the reconstruction of large-scale solar magnetic field structure on the basis of H{\\alpha} synoptic charts for the periods when magnetographic measurements were not available. Sometimes crossing filaments are seen in H{\\alpha} filtergrams. We analyze daily H{\\alpha} filtergrams from the archive of Big Bear Solar Observatory for the period of 1999-2003 to find crossing and interacting filaments. A number of examples are presented and filament patterns are compared with photospheric magnetic field distributions. We have found that all crossing filaments reveal quadrupolar magnetic configurations of the photospheric field and presume the presence of null points in the corona.

  14. Study of self-compliance behaviors and internal filament characteristics in intrinsic SiOx-based resistive switching memory

    Chang, Yao-Feng; Fowler, Burt; Zhou, Fei; Chen, Ying-Chen; Lee, Jack C.

    2016-01-01

    Self-compliance characteristics and reliability optimization are investigated in intrinsic unipolar silicon oxide (SiOx)-based resistive switching (RS) memory using TiW/SiOx/TiW device structures. The program window (difference between SET voltage and RESET voltage) is dependent on external series resistance, demonstrating that the SET process is due to a voltage-triggered mechanism. The program window has been optimized for program/erase disturbance immunity and reliability for circuit-level applications. The SET and RESET transitions have also been characterized using a dynamic conductivity method, which distinguishes the self-compliance behavior due to an internal series resistance effect (filament) in SiOx-based RS memory. By using a conceptual "filament/resistive gap (GAP)" model of the conductive filament and a proton exchange model with appropriate assumptions, the internal filament resistance and GAP resistance can be estimated for high- and low-resistance states (HRS and LRS), and are found to be independent of external series resistance. Our experimental results not only provide insights into potential reliability issues but also help to clarify the switching mechanisms and device operating characteristics of SiOx-based RS memory.

  15. Dynamics of active actin networks

    Koehler, Simone

    2014-03-01

    Local mechanical and structural properties of a eukaryotic cell are determined by its cytoskeleton. To adapt to their environment, cells rely on constant self-organized rearrangement processes of their actin cytoskeleton. To shed light on the principles underlying these dynamic self-organization processes we investigate a minimal reconstituted active system consisting of actin filaments, crosslinking molecules and molecular motor filaments. Using quantitative fluorescence microscopy and image analysis, we show, that these minimal model systems exhibit a generic structure formation mechanism. The competition between force generation by molecular motors and the stabilization of the network by crosslinking proteins results in a highly dynamic reorganization process which is characterized by anomalous transport dynamics with a superdiffusive behavior also found in intracellular dynamics. In vitro, these dynamics are governed by chemical and physical parameters that alter the balance of motor and crosslinking proteins, such as pH. These findings can be expected to have broad implications in our understanding of cytoskeletal regulation in vivo.

  16. Force of an actin spring

    Shin, Jennifer; Mahadevan, L.; Matsudaira, Paul

    2003-03-01

    The acrosomal process of the horseshoe crab sperm is a novel mechanochemical molecular spring that converts its elastic stain energy to mechanical work upon the chemical activation by Ca2+. Twisted and bent, the initial state of the acrosomal bundle features a high degree of complexity in its structure and the energy is believed to be stored in the highly strained actin filaments as an elastic potential energy. When activated, the bundle relaxes from the coil of the highly twisted and bent filaments to its straight conformation at a mean velocity of 15um/s. The mean extension velocity increases dramatically from 3um/s to 27um/s when temperature of the medium is changed from 9.6C to 32C (respective viscosities of 1.25-0.75cp), yet it exhibits a very weak dependence on changes in the medium viscosity (1cp-33cp). These experiments suggest that the uncoiling of the actin spring should be limited not by the viscosity of the medium but by the unlatching events of involved proteins at a molecular level. Unlike the viscosity-limited processes, where force is directly related to the rate of the reaction, a direct measurement is required to obtain the spring force of the acrosomal process. The extending acrosomal bundle is forced to push against a barrier and its elastic buckling response is analyzed to measure the force generated during the uncoiling.

  17. Hot-melt extruded filaments based on pharmaceutical grade polymers for 3D printing by fused deposition modeling.

    Melocchi, Alice; Parietti, Federico; Maroni, Alessandra; Foppoli, Anastasia; Gazzaniga, Andrea; Zema, Lucia

    2016-07-25

    Fused deposition modeling (FDM) is a 3D printing technique based on the deposition of successive layers of thermoplastic materials following their softening/melting. Such a technique holds huge potential for the manufacturing of pharmaceutical products and is currently under extensive investigation. Challenges in this field are mainly related to the paucity of adequate filaments composed of pharmaceutical grade materials, which are needed for feeding the FDM equipment. Accordingly, a number of polymers of common use in pharmaceutical formulation were evaluated as starting materials for fabrication via hot melt extrusion of filaments suitable for FDM processes. By using a twin-screw extruder, filaments based on insoluble (ethylcellulose, Eudragit(®) RL), promptly soluble (polyethylene oxide, Kollicoat(®) IR), enteric soluble (Eudragit(®) L, hydroxypropyl methylcellulose acetate succinate) and swellable/erodible (hydrophilic cellulose derivatives, polyvinyl alcohol, Soluplus(®)) polymers were successfully produced, and the possibility of employing them for printing 600μm thick disks was demonstrated. The behavior of disks as barriers when in contact with aqueous fluids was shown consistent with the functional application of the relevant polymeric components. The produced filaments were thus considered potentially suitable for printing capsules and coating layers for immediate or modified release, and, when loaded with active ingredients, any type of dosage forms. PMID:27215535

  18. Bacterial Mitosis: ParM of Plasmid R1 Moves Plasmid DNA by an Actin-like Insertional Polymerization Mechanism

    Møller-Jensen, Jakob; Borch, Jonas; Dam, Mette;

    2003-01-01

    Bacterial DNA segregation takes place in an active and ordered fashion. In the case of Escherichia coli plasmid R1, the partitioning system (par) separates paired plasmid copies and moves them to opposite cell poles. Here we address the mechanism by which the three components of the R1 par system...... act together to generate the force required for plasmid movement during segregation. ParR protein binds cooperatively to the centromeric parC DNA region, thereby forming a complex that interacts with the filament-forming actin-like ParM protein in an ATP-dependent manner, suggesting that plasmid...... movement is powered by insertional polymerization of ParM. Consistently, we find that segregating plasmids are positioned at the ends of extending ParM filaments. Thus, the process of R1 plasmid segregation in E. coli appears to be mechanistically analogous to the actin-based motility operating...

  19. A molecular model of phosphorylation-based activation and potentiation of tarantula muscle thick filaments

    Brito, Reicy; Alamo, Lorenzo; Lundberg, Ulf; Guerrero, José R.; Pinto, Antonio; Sulbarán, Guidenn; Gawinowicz, Mary Ann; Craig, Roger; Padrón, Raúl

    2011-01-01

    Myosin filaments from many muscles are activated by phosphorylation of their regulatory light chains (RLCs). To elucidate the structural mechanism of activation, we have studied RLC phosphorylation in tarantula thick filaments, whose high resolution structure is known. In the relaxed state, tarantula RLCs are ~50% non- and 50% mono-phosphorylated, while on activation mono-phosphorylation increases and some RLCs become bi-phosphorylated. Mass spectrometry shows that relaxed-state mono-phosphor...

  20. Mechanical Properties of Re-constituted Actin Networks at an Oil/Water Interface Determined by Microrheology

    Ershov, D.S.; Cohen Stuart, M.A.; Gucht, van der J.

    2012-01-01

    There have been various attempts to investigate the mechanical properties of the actin cortex in cells, but the factors that control them remain poorly understood. To make progress, we develop a reconstituted model of the actin cortex that mimics its structure. We attach actin filaments to lipids li

  1. A numerical study of multi filament formation in metal-ion based CBRAM

    Dan Berco

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available This study investigates the underlying mechanisms of multiple conductive filaments (CF creation in metal-ion based conductive bridge RRAM (CBRAM by using the Metropolis Monte Carlo algorithm and suggests a possible explanation for this phenomenon. The simulation method is demonstrated over a Cu/HfO2 structure, starting from a random initial distribution of oxygen vacancies (OV defects in the resistive switching layer, to a formed CF and ending in a ruptured state. the results indicate that “Hot Spots” (HS, where agglomeration of OV trap like states for electron hopping based conduction induce local heating, create favorable energy conditions to attract diffused metal species originating from the top electrode. While HS may be created and annihilated by random OV generation and recombination processes, the precipitated metal forms a stem out of which a CF could evolve. The CF stem’s final growth stage is mainly driven by drift and diffusion. This process may lead to the formation of one or more CFs as a function of the forming bias voltage. This bias dependence is demonstrated over a large range, where the creation of a single, double and multiple CFs are shown. In addition, the reset process of the multi CF device is presented, and the experimentally observed, step like, gradual CBRAM reset is verified. The simulated results are in good agreement with experimental data and promote the idea that OV defect engineering may be used to improve CBRAM performance.

  2. Deafness and espin-actin self-organization in stereocilia

    Wong, Gerard C. L.

    2009-03-01

    Espins are F-actin-bundling proteins associated with large parallel actin bundles found in hair cell stereocilia in the ear, as well as brush border microvilli and Sertoli cell junctions. We examine actin bundle structures formed by different wild-type espin isoforms, fragments, and naturally-occurring human espin mutants linked to deafness and/or vestibular dysfunction. The espin-actin bundle structure consisted of a hexagonal arrangement of parallel actin filaments in a non-native twist state. We delineate the structural consequences caused by mutations in espin's actin-bundling module. For espin mutation with a severely damaged actin-bundling module, which are implicated in deafness in mice and humans, oriented nematic-like actin filament structures, which strongly impinges on bundle mechanical stiffness. Finally, we examine what makes espin different, via a comparative study of bundles formed by espin and those formed by fascin, a prototypical bundling protein found in functionally different regions of the cell, such as filopodia.

  3. Allyl Isothiocyanate Inhibits Actin-Dependent Intracellular Transport in Arabidopsis thaliana

    Bjørnar Sporsheim

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Volatile allyl isothiocyanate (AITC derives from the biodegradation of the glucosinolate sinigrin and has been associated with growth inhibition in several plants, including the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana. However, the underlying cellular mechanisms of this feature remain scarcely investigated in plants. In this study, we present evidence of an AITC-induced inhibition of actin-dependent intracellular transport in A. thaliana. A transgenic line of A. thaliana expressing yellow fluorescent protein (YFP-tagged actin filaments was used to show attenuation of actin filament movement by AITC. This appeared gradually in a time- and dose-dependent manner and resulted in actin filaments appearing close to static. Further, we employed four transgenic lines with YFP-fusion proteins labeling the Golgi apparatus, endoplasmic reticulum (ER, vacuoles and peroxisomes to demonstrate an AITC-induced inhibition of actin-dependent intracellular transport of or, in these structures, consistent with the decline in actin filament movement. Furthermore, the morphologies of actin filaments, ER and vacuoles appeared aberrant following AITC-exposure. However, AITC-treated seedlings of all transgenic lines tested displayed morphologies and intracellular movements similar to that of the corresponding untreated and control-treated plants, following overnight incubation in an AITC-absent environment, indicating that AITC-induced decline in actin-related movements is a reversible process. These findings provide novel insights into the cellular events in plant cells following exposure to AITC, which may further expose clues to the physiological significance of the glucosinolate-myrosinase system.

  4. Fabry-Pérot based narrow band imager for solar filament observations

    Dhara, Sajal Kumar; Ravindra, Belur; Banyal, Ravinder Kumar

    2016-01-01

    We have recently developed a narrow band imager (NBI) using an air gap based Fabry-Pérot (FP) interferometer at the Indian Institute of Astrophysics, Bangalore. Narrow band imaging is achieved by using an FP interferometer working in combination with an order sorting pre-filter. The NBI can be tuned to a different wavelength position on the line profile by changing the plate separation of the FP. The interferometer has a 50 mm clear aperture with a bandpass of ∼247.8 mÅ and a free spectral range of ∼5.3 Å at λ = 656.3 nm. The developed NBI is used to observe the solar filament in the Hα wavelength. The instrument is being used to image the Sun at chromospheric height and it is also able to scan the Hα spectral line profile at different wavelength positions. We have also made Doppler velocity maps at chromospheric height by taking the blue and red wing images at ±176 mÅ wavelength positions separately away from the line center of the spectral line. In this paper, we present a description of the NBI including lab test results of individual components and some initial observations carried out with this instrument.

  5. Fabry-P\\'erot based Narrow Band Imager for Solar Filament Observations

    Dhara, Sajal Kumar; Banyal, Ravinder Kumar

    2015-01-01

    We have recently developed a narrow band imager (NBI) using an air gap based Fabry-P\\'erot (FP) interferometer at the Indian Institute of Astrophysics, Bangalore. Narrow band imaging is achieved by using an FP interferometer working in combination with an order sorting pre-filter. The NBI can be tuned to a different wavelength position on the line profile by changing the plate separation of the FP. The interferometer has a 50 mm clear aperture with a bandpass of $\\sim$247.8 m\\AA and a free spectral range of $\\sim$5.3\\AA at $\\lambda$ = 656.3 nm. The developed NBI is used to observe the solar filament in the H$\\alpha$ wavelength. The instrument is being used to image the Sun at chromospheric height and it is also able to scan the H$\\alpha$ spectral line profile at different wavelength positions. We have also made Doppler velocity maps at chromospheric height by taking the blue and red wing images at $\\pm$176 m\\AA wavelength positions separately away from the line center of the spectral line. In this paper, we p...

  6. A Neural Network Gravitational Arc Finder Based on the Mediatrix Filamentation Method

    Bom, C R; Albuquerque, M P; Brandt, C H

    2016-01-01

    Automated arc detection methods are needed to scan the ongoing and next-generation wide-field imaging surveys, which are expected to contain thousands of strong lensing systems. Arc finders are also required for a quantitative comparison between predictions and observations of arc abundance. Several algorithms have been proposed to this end, but machine learning methods have remained as a relatively unexplored step in the arc finding process. In this work we introduce a new arc finder based on pattern-recognition, which uses a set of morphological measurements derived from the Mediatrix Filamentation Method (Bom et al. 2016) as entries to an Artificial Neural Network (ANN). We show a full example of the application of the arc finder, first training and validating the ANN on simulated arcs and then applying the code on 4 Hubble Space Telescope (HST) images of strong lensing systems.The simulated arcs use simple prescriptions for the lens and the source, while mimicking HST observational conditions. We also con...

  7. Helical filaments

    Barbieri, Nicholas; Lim, Khan; Durand, Magali; Baudelet, Matthieu; Richardson, Martin [Townes Laser Institute, CREOL—The College of Optics and Photonics, University of Central Florida, Orlando, Florida 32816 (United States); Hosseinimakarem, Zahra; Johnson, Eric [Micro-Photonics Laboratory – Center for Optical Material Science, Clemson, Anderson, South Carolina 29634 (United States)

    2014-06-30

    The shaping of laser-induced filamenting plasma channels into helical structures by guiding the process with a non-diffracting beam is demonstrated. This was achieved using a Bessel beam superposition to control the phase of an ultrafast laser beam possessing intensities sufficient to induce Kerr effect driven non-linear self-focusing. Several experimental methods were used to characterize the resulting beams and confirm the observed structures are laser air filaments.

  8. Probing GFP-actin diffusion in living cells using fluorescence correlation spectroscopy

    The cytoskeleton of eukaryotic cells is continuously remodeled by polymerization and depolymerization of actin. Consequently, the relative content of polymerized filamentous actin (F-actin) and monomeric globular actin (G-actin) is subject to temporal and spatial fluctuations. Since fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS) can measure the diffusion of fluorescently labeled actin it seems likely that FCS allows us to determine the dynamics and hence indirectly the structural properties of the cytoskeleton components with high spatial resolution. To this end we investigate the FCS signal of GFP-actin in living Dictyostelium discoideum cells and explore the inherent spatial and temporal signatures of the actin cytoskeleton. Using the free green fluorescent protein (GFP) as a reference, we find that actin diffusion inside cells is dominated by G-actin and slower than diffusion in diluted cell extract. The FCS signal in the dense cortical F-actin network near the cell membrane is probed using the cytoskeleton protein LIM and is found to be slower than cytosolic G-actin diffusion. Furthermore, we show that polymerization of the cytoskeleton induced by Jasplakinolide leads to a substantial decrease of G-actin diffusion. Pronounced fluctuations in the distribution of the FCS correlation curves can be induced by latrunculin, which is known to induce actin waves. Our work suggests that the FCS signal of GFP-actin in combination with scanning or spatial correlation techniques yield valuable information about the local dynamics and concomitant cytoskeletal properties

  9. Regimes of wave type patterning driven by refractory actin feedback: transition from static polarization to dynamic wave behaviour

    Patterns of waves, patches, and peaks of actin are observed experimentally in many living cells. Models of this phenomenon have been based on the interplay between filamentous actin (F-actin) and its nucleation promoting factors (NPFs) that activate the Arp2/3 complex. Here we present an alternative biologically-motivated model for F-actin-NPF interaction based on properties of GTPases acting as NPFs. GTPases (such as Cdc42, Rac) are known to promote actin nucleation, and to have active membrane-bound and inactive cytosolic forms. The model is a natural extension of a previous mathematical mini-model of small GTPases that generates static cell polarization. Like other modellers, we assume that F-actin negative feedback shapes the observed patterns by suppressing the trailing edge of NPF-generated wave-fronts, hence localizing the activity spatially. We find that our NPF-actin model generates a rich set of behaviours, spanning a transition from static polarization to single pulses, reflecting waves, wave trains, and oscillations localized at the cell edge. The model is developed with simplicity in mind to investigate the interaction between nucleation promoting factor kinetics and negative feedback. It explains distinct types of pattern initiation mechanisms, and identifies parameter regimes corresponding to distinct behaviours. We show that weak actin feedback yields static patterning, moderate feedback yields dynamical behaviour such as travelling waves, and strong feedback can lead to wave trains or total suppression of patterning. We use a recently introduced nonlinear bifurcation analysis to explore the parameter space of this model and predict its behaviour with simulations validating those results. (paper)

  10. Actin polymerization or myosin contraction: two ways to build up cortical tension for symmetry breaking.

    Carvalho, Kevin; Lemière, Joël; Faqir, Fahima; Manzi, John; Blanchoin, Laurent; Plastino, Julie; Betz, Timo; Sykes, Cécile

    2013-01-01

    Cells use complex biochemical pathways to drive shape changes for polarization and movement. One of these pathways is the self-assembly of actin filaments and myosin motors that together produce the forces and tensions that drive cell shape changes. Whereas the role of actin and myosin motors in cell polarization is clear, the exact mechanism of how the cortex, a thin shell of actin that is underneath the plasma membrane, can drive cell shape changes is still an open question. Here, we address this issue using biomimetic systems: the actin cortex is reconstituted on liposome membranes, in an 'outside geometry'. The actin shell is either grown from an activator of actin polymerization immobilized at the membrane by a biotin-streptavidin link, or built by simple adsorption of biotinylated actin filaments to the membrane, in the presence or absence of myosin motors. We show that tension in the actin network can be induced either by active actin polymerization on the membrane via the Arp2/3 complex or by myosin II filament pulling activity. Symmetry breaking and spontaneous polarization occur above a critical tension that opens up a crack in the actin shell. We show that this critical tension is reached by growing branched networks, nucleated by the Arp2/3 complex, in a concentration window of capping protein that limits actin filament growth and by a sufficient number of motors that pull on actin filaments. Our study provides the groundwork to understanding the physical mechanisms at work during polarization prior to cell shape modifications. PMID:24062578

  11. Quantifying protein diffusion and capture on filaments

    Reithmann, Emanuel; Frey, Erwin

    2015-01-01

    The functional relevance of regulating proteins is often limited to specific binding sites such as the ends of microtubules or actin-filaments. A localization of proteins on these functional sites is of great importance. We present a quantitative theory for a diffusion and capture process, where proteins diffuse on a filament and stop diffusing when reaching the filament's end. It is found that end-association after one-dimensional diffusion is the main source for tip-localization of such proteins. As a consequence, diffusion and capture is highly efficient in enhancing the reaction velocity of enzymatic reactions, where proteins and filament ends are to each other as enzyme and substrate. We show that the reaction velocity can effectively be described within a Michaelis-Menten framework. Together one-dimensional diffusion and capture beats the (three-dimensional) Smoluchowski diffusion limit for the rate of protein association to filament ends.

  12. The actin binding protein adseverin regulates osteoclastogenesis.

    Hassanpour, Siavash; Jiang, Hongwei; Wang, Yongqiang; Kuiper, Johannes W P; Glogauer, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Adseverin (Ads), a member of the Gelsolin superfamily of actin binding proteins, regulates the actin cytoskeleton architecture by severing and capping existing filamentous actin (F-actin) strands and nucleating the assembly of new F-actin filaments. Ads has been implicated in cellular secretion, exocytosis and has also been shown to regulate chondrogenesis and megakaryoblastic leukemia cell differentiation. Here we report for the first time that Ads is involved in regulating osteoclastogenesis (OCG). Ads is induced during OCG downstream of RANK-ligand (RANKL) stimulation and is highly expressed in mature osteoclasts. The D5 isoform of Ads is not involved in regulating OCG, as its expression is not induced in response to RANKL. Three clonal Ads knockdown RAW264.7 (RAW) macrophage cell lines with varying degrees of Ads expression and OCG deficiency were generated. The most drastic OCG defect was noted in the clonal cell line with the greatest degree of Ads knockdown as indicated by a lack of TRAcP staining and multinucleation. RNAi mediated knockdown of Ads in osteoclast precursors resulted in distinct morphological changes characterized by altered F-actin distribution and increased filopodia formation. Ads knockdown precursor cells experienced enhanced migration while fusion of knockdown precursors cells was limited. Transient reintroduction of de novo Ads back into the knockdown system was capable of rescuing TRAcP expression but not osteoclast multinucleation most likely due to the transient nature of Ads expression. This preliminary study allows us to conclude that Ads is a RANKL induced early regulator of OCG with a potential role in pre-osteoclast differentiation and fusion. PMID:25275604

  13. The actin binding protein adseverin regulates osteoclastogenesis.

    Siavash Hassanpour

    Full Text Available Adseverin (Ads, a member of the Gelsolin superfamily of actin binding proteins, regulates the actin cytoskeleton architecture by severing and capping existing filamentous actin (F-actin strands and nucleating the assembly of new F-actin filaments. Ads has been implicated in cellular secretion, exocytosis and has also been shown to regulate chondrogenesis and megakaryoblastic leukemia cell differentiation. Here we report for the first time that Ads is involved in regulating osteoclastogenesis (OCG. Ads is induced during OCG downstream of RANK-ligand (RANKL stimulation and is highly expressed in mature osteoclasts. The D5 isoform of Ads is not involved in regulating OCG, as its expression is not induced in response to RANKL. Three clonal Ads knockdown RAW264.7 (RAW macrophage cell lines with varying degrees of Ads expression and OCG deficiency were generated. The most drastic OCG defect was noted in the clonal cell line with the greatest degree of Ads knockdown as indicated by a lack of TRAcP staining and multinucleation. RNAi mediated knockdown of Ads in osteoclast precursors resulted in distinct morphological changes characterized by altered F-actin distribution and increased filopodia formation. Ads knockdown precursor cells experienced enhanced migration while fusion of knockdown precursors cells was limited. Transient reintroduction of de novo Ads back into the knockdown system was capable of rescuing TRAcP expression but not osteoclast multinucleation most likely due to the transient nature of Ads expression. This preliminary study allows us to conclude that Ads is a RANKL induced early regulator of OCG with a potential role in pre-osteoclast differentiation and fusion.

  14. Regulation of actin cytoskeleton architecture by Eps8 and Abi1

    Miller Jeffrey R

    2005-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The actin cytoskeleton participates in many fundamental processes including the regulation of cell shape, motility, and adhesion. The remodeling of the actin cytoskeleton is dependent on actin binding proteins, which organize actin filaments into specific structures that allow them to perform various specialized functions. The Eps8 family of proteins is implicated in the regulation of actin cytoskeleton remodeling during cell migration, yet the precise mechanism by which Eps8 regulates actin organization and remodeling remains elusive. Results Here, we show that Eps8 promotes the assembly of actin rich filopodia-like structures and actin cables in cultured mammalian cells and Xenopus embryos, respectively. The morphology of actin structures induced by Eps8 was modulated by interactions with Abi1, which stimulated formation of actin cables in cultured cells and star-like structures in Xenopus. The actin stars observed in Xenopus animal cap cells assembled at the apical surface of epithelial cells in a Rac-independent manner and their formation was accompanied by recruitment of N-WASP, suggesting that the Eps8/Abi1 complex is capable of regulating the localization and/or activity of actin nucleators. We also found that Eps8 recruits Dishevelled to the plasma membrane and actin filaments suggesting that Eps8 might participate in non-canonical Wnt/Polarity signaling. Consistent with this idea, mis-expression of Eps8 in dorsal regions of Xenopus embryos resulted in gastrulation defects. Conclusion Together, these results suggest that Eps8 plays multiple roles in modulating actin filament organization, possibly through its interaction with distinct sets of actin regulatory complexes. Furthermore, the finding that Eps8 interacts with Dsh and induced gastrulation defects provides evidence that Eps8 might participate in non-canonical Wnt signaling to control cell movements during vertebrate development.

  15. Actin flow and talin dynamics govern rigidity sensing in actin-integrin linkage through talin extension.

    Hirata, Hiroaki; Chiam, Keng-Hwee; Lim, Chwee Teck; Sokabe, Masahiro

    2014-10-01

    At cell-substrate adhesion sites, the linkage between actin filaments and integrin is regulated by mechanical stiffness of the substrate. Of potential molecular regulators, the linker proteins talin and vinculin are of particular interest because mechanical extension of talin induces vinculin binding with talin, which reinforces the actin-integrin linkage. For understanding the molecular and biophysical mechanism of rigidity sensing at cell-substrate adhesion sites, we constructed a simple physical model to examine a role of talin extension in the stiffness-dependent regulation of actin-integrin linkage. We show that talin molecules linking between retrograding actin filaments and substrate-bound integrin are extended in a manner dependent on substrate stiffness. The model predicts that, in adhesion complexes containing ≈30 talin links, talin is extended enough for vinculin binding when the substrate is stiffer than 1 kPa. The lifetime of talin links needs to be 2-5 s to achieve an appropriate response of talin extension against substrate stiffness. Furthermore, changes in actin velocity drastically shift the range of substrate stiffness that induces talin-vinculin binding. Our results suggest that talin extension is a key step in sensing and responding to substrate stiffness at cell adhesion sites. PMID:25142525

  16. Modeling of an Optical Sensor Based on Whispering Gallery Modes (WGMs) on the Surface Guiding Layer of Glass Filaments

    Xianfeng Chen; Lei Shi; Wei Tan

    2008-01-01

    A ring-resonator-based refractive index sensor is proposed in this paper. Glass filaments with surface guiding layers created by ion exchange are crossed with a fiber taper to act as a ring resonator sensor. Theoretical simulation of the sensor response is proposed, and optimization of structural parameters including thickness and refractive index of the surface guiding layer and the diameter of the ring resonator for higher sensitivity is investigated. Results show that a detection limit of ...

  17. Enhanced filament ablation of metals based on plasma grating in air

    Di Wang

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available We demonstrate efficient ablation of metals with filamentary plasma grating generated by two intense blue femtosecond filaments and a third focused infrared pulse. This scheme leads to significant promotion of ablation efficiency on metal targets in air in comparison with single infrared or blue filament with equal pulse energy. The reason is that the blue plasma grating firstly provides stronger intensity and a higher density of background electrons, then the delayed infrared pulse accelerates local electrons inside the plasma grating. These two processes finally results in robustly increased electron density and highly ionized metallic atoms.

  18. Internal Motility in Stiffening Actin-Myosin Networks

    Uhde, Joerg; Keller, Manfred; Sackmann, Erich; Parmeggiani, Andrea; Frey, Erwin

    2003-01-01

    We present a study on filamentous actin solutions containing heavy meromyosin subfragments of myosin II motor molecules. We focus on the viscoelastic phase behavior and internal dynamics of such networks during ATP depletion. Upon simultaneously using micro-rheology and fluorescence microscopy as complementary experimental tools, we find a sol-gel transition accompanied by a sudden onset of directed filament motion. We interpret the sol-gel transition in terms of myosin II enzymology, and sug...

  19. The role of the cofilin-actin rod stress response in neurodegenerative diseases uncovers potential new drug targets

    Munsie, Lise N.; Truant, Ray

    2012-01-01

    The cofilin-actin rod stress response is an actin cytoskeletal dynamic arrest that occurs in cells under a variety of stress conditions. Upon stress, the rapidly activated cofilin saturates actin filaments causing them to bundle into rod structures in either the nucleus or cytoplasm, halting actin polymerization and thus freeing ATP. Importantly, these rods dissociate quickly following relief of the transient stress. The rods form inappropriately in neurons involved in the progression of Alzh...

  20. Simultaneous recordings of force and sliding movement between a myosin-coated glass microneedle and actin cables in vitro.

    Chaen, S; Oiwa, K; Shimmen, T; Iwamoto, H; Sugi, H

    1989-01-01

    To elucidate the molecular mechanism of muscle contraction resulting from the ATP-dependent actin-myosin interaction, we constructed an assay system with which both the force and the movement produced by the actin-myosin interaction in vitro can be simultaneously recorded and analyzed. The assay system consisted of the giant internodal cells of an alga, Nitellopsis obtusa, which contain well-organized arrays of actin filaments (actin cables) running along the cell long axis, and a glass micro...

  1. Vital role for the Plasmodium actin capping protein (CP) beta-subunit in motility of malaria sporozoites

    Ganter, Markus; Schüler, Herwig; Matuschewski, Kai

    2009-01-01

    Successful malaria transmission from the mosquito vector to the mammalian host depends crucially on active sporozoite motility. Sporozoite locomotion and host cell invasion are driven by the parasite's own actin/myosin motor. A unique feature of this motor machinery is the presence of very short subpellicular actin filaments. Therefore, F-actin stabilizing proteins likely play a central role in parasite locomotion. Here, we investigated the role of the Plasmodium berghei actin capping protein...

  2. A coarse-grained model to study calcium activation of the cardiac thin filament

    Zhang, Jing; Schwartz, Steven

    2015-03-01

    Familial hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (FHC) is one of the most common heart disease caused by genetic mutations. Cardiac muscle contraction and relaxation involve regulation of crossbridge binding to the cardiac thin filament, which regulates actomyosin interactions through calcium-dependent alterations in the dynamics of cardiac troponin (cTn) and tropomyosin (Tm). An atomistic model of cTn complex interacting with Tm has been studied by our group. A more realistic model requires the inclusion of the dynamics of actin filament, which is almost 6 times larger than cTn and Tm in terms of atom numbers, and extensive sampling of the model becomes very resource-demanding. By using physics-based protein united-residue force field, we introduce a coarse-grained model to study the calcium activation of the thin filament resulting from cTn's allosteric regulation of Tm dynamics on actin. The time scale is much longer than that of all-atom molecular dynamics simulation because of the reduction of the degrees of freedom. The coarse-grained model is a good template for studying cardiac thin filament mutations that cause FHC, and reduces the cost of computational resources.

  3. The Arabidopsis Wave Complex: Mechanisms Of Localized Actin Polymerization And Growth

    Daniel Szymanski

    2012-10-23

    The objective of this project was to discover the protein complexes and control mechanisms that determine the location of actin filament roadways in plant cells. Our work provided the first molecular description of protein complexes that are converted from inactive complexes to active actin filament nucleators in the cell. These discoveries provided a conceptual framework to control to roadways in plant cells that determine the location and delivery of plant metabolites and storage molecules that are relevant to the bioenergy economy.

  4. The Actin-Binding Protein α-Adducin Is Required for Maintaining Axon Diameter.

    Leite, Sérgio Carvalho; Sampaio, Paula; Sousa, Vera Filipe; Nogueira-Rodrigues, Joana; Pinto-Costa, Rita; Peters, Luanne Laurel; Brites, Pedro; Sousa, Mónica Mendes

    2016-04-19

    The actin-binding protein adducin was recently identified as a component of the neuronal subcortical cytoskeleton. Here, we analyzed mice lacking adducin to uncover the function of this protein in actin rings. α-adducin knockout mice presented progressive axon enlargement in the spinal cord and optic and sciatic nerves, followed by axon degeneration and loss. Using stimulated emission depletion super-resolution microscopy, we show that a periodic subcortical actin cytoskeleton is assembled in every neuron type inspected including retinal ganglion cells and dorsal root ganglia neurons. In neurons devoid of adducin, the actin ring diameter increased, although the inter-ring periodicity was maintained. In vitro, the actin ring diameter adjusted as axons grew, suggesting the lattice is dynamic. Our data support a model in which adducin activity is not essential for actin ring assembly and periodicity but is necessary to control the diameter of both actin rings and axons and actin filament growth within rings. PMID:27068466

  5. An unconventional form of actin in protozoan hemoflagellate, Leishmania.

    Kapoor, Prabodh; Sahasrabuddhe, Amogh A; Kumar, Ashutosh; Mitra, Kalyan; Siddiqi, Mohammad Imran; Gupta, Chhitar M

    2008-08-15

    Leishmania actin was cloned, overexpressed in baculovirus-insect cell system, and purified to homogeneity. The purified protein polymerized optimally in the presence of Mg2+ and ATP, but differed from conventional actins in its following properties: (i) it did not polymerize in the presence of Mg2+ alone, (ii) it polymerized in a restricted range of pH 7.0-8.5, (iii) its critical concentration for polymerization was found to be 3-4-fold lower than of muscle actin, (iv) it predominantly formed bundles rather than single filaments at pH 8.0, (v) it displayed considerably higher ATPase activity during polymerization, (vi) it did not inhibit DNase-I activity, and (vii) it did not bind the F-actin-binding toxin phalloidin or the actin polymerization disrupting agent Latrunculin B. Computational and molecular modeling studies revealed that the observed unconventional behavior of Leishmania actin is related to the diverged amino acid stretches in its sequence, which may lead to changes in the overall charge distribution on its solvent-exposed surface, ATP binding cleft, Mg2+ binding sites, and the hydrophobic loop that is involved in monomer-monomer interactions. Phylogenetically, it is related to ciliate actins, but to the best of our knowledge, no other actin with such unconventional properties has been reported to date. It is therefore suggested that actin in Leishmania may serve as a novel target for design of new antileishmanial drugs. PMID:18539603

  6. Inhibiting actin depolymerization enhances osteoblast differentiation and bone formation in human stromal stem cells

    Chen, Li; Shi, Kaikai; Frary, Charles Edward;

    2015-01-01

    Remodeling of the actin cytoskeleton through actin dynamics is involved in a number of biological processes, but its role in human stromal (skeletal) stem cells (hMSCs) differentiation is poorly understood. In the present study, we demonstrated that stabilizing actin filaments by inhibiting gene...... expression of the two main actin depolymerizing factors (ADFs): Cofilin 1 (CFL1) and Destrin (DSTN) in hMSCs, enhanced cell viability and differentiation into osteoblastic cells (OB) in vitro, as well as heterotopic bone formation in vivo. Similarly, treating hMSC with Phalloidin, which is known to stabilize...... polymerized actin filaments, increased hMSCs viability and OB differentiation. Conversely, Cytocholasin D, an inhibitor of actin polymerization, reduced cell viability and inhibited OB differentiation of hMSC. At a molecular level, preventing Cofilin phosphorylation through inhibition of LIM domain kinase 1...

  7. Calponin isoforms CNN1, CNN2 and CNN3: Regulators for actin cytoskeleton functions in smooth muscle and non-muscle cells.

    Liu, Rong; Jin, J-P

    2016-07-01

    Calponin is an actin filament-associated regulatory protein expressed in smooth muscle and many types of non-muscle cells. Three homologous genes, CNN1, CNN2 and CNN3, encoding calponin isoforms 1, 2, and 3, respectively, are present in vertebrate species. All three calponin isoforms are actin-binding proteins with functions in inhibiting actin-activated myosin ATPase and stabilizing the actin cytoskeleton, while each isoform executes different physiological roles based on their cell type-specific expressions. Calponin 1 is specifically expressed in smooth muscle cells and plays a role in fine-tuning smooth muscle contractility. Calponin 2 is expressed in both smooth muscle and non-muscle cells and regulates multiple actin cytoskeleton-based functions. Calponin 3 participates in actin cytoskeleton-based activities in embryonic development and myogenesis. Phosphorylation has been extensively studied for the regulation of calponin functions. Cytoskeleton tension regulates the transcription of CNN2 gene and the degradation of calponin 2 protein. This review summarizes our knowledge learned from studies over the past three decades, focusing on the evolutionary lineage of calponin isoform genes, their tissue- and cell type-specific expressions, structure-function relationships, and mechanoregulation. PMID:26970176

  8. Feedback Interactions of Polymerized Actin with the Cell Membrane: Waves, Pulses, and Oscillations

    Carlsson, Anders

    Polymerized filaments of the protein actin have crucial functions in cell migration, and in bending the cell membrane to drive endocytosis or the formation of protrusions. The nucleation and polymerization of actin filaments are controlled by upstream agents in the cell membrane, including nucleation-promoting factors (NPFs) that activate the Arp2/3 complex to form new branches on pre-existing filaments. But polymerized actin (F-actin) also feeds back on the assembly of NPFs. We explore the effects of the resulting feedback loop of F-actin and NPFs on two phenomena: actin pulses that drive endocytosis in yeast, and actin waves traveling along the membrane of several cell types. In our model of endocytosis in yeast, the actin network is grown explicitly in three dimensions, exerts a negative feedback interaction on localized patch of NPFs in the membrane, and bends the membrane by exerting a distribution of forces. This model explains observed actin and NPF pulse dynamics, and the effects of several interventions including i) NPF mutations, ii) inhibition of actin polymerization, and iii) deletion of a protein that allows F-actin to bend the cell membrane. The model predicts that mutation of the active region of an NPF will enhance the accumulation of that NPF, and we confirm this prediction by quantitative fluorescence microscopy. For actin waves, we treat a similar model, with NPFs distributed over a larger region of the cell membrane. This model naturally generates actin waves, and predicts a transition from wave behavior to spatially localized oscillations when NPFs are confined to a small region. We also predict a transition from waves to static polarization as the negative-feedback coupling between F-actin and the NPFs is reduced. Supported by NIGMS Grant R01 GM107667.

  9. Aspects of plant cell growth and the actin cytoskeleton: lessons from root hairs

    Ruijter, de N.C.A.

    1999-01-01

    The main topic the thesis addresses is the role of the actin cytoskeleton in the growth process of plant cells. Plant growth implies a combination of cell division and cell expansion. The cytoskeleton, which exists of microtubules and actin filaments, plays a major role in both processes. Before cel

  10. Modelling the Peak Elongation of Nylon6 and Fe Powder Based Composite Wire for FDM Feedstock Filament

    Garg, Harish Kumar; Singh, Rupinder

    2016-06-01

    In the present work, to increase the application domain of fused deposition modelling (FDM) process, Nylon6-Fe powder based composite wire has been prepared as feed stock filament. Further for smooth functioning of feed stock filament without any change in the hardware and software of the commercial FDM setup, the mechanical properties of the newly prepared composite wire must be comparable/at par to the existing material i.e. ABS, P-430. So, keeping this in consideration; an effort has been made to model the peak elongation of in house developed feedstock filament comprising of Nylon6 and Fe powder (prepared on single screw extrusion process) for commercial FDM setup. The input parameters of single screw extruder (namely: barrel temperature, temperature of the die, speed of the screw, speed of the winding machine) and rheological property of material (melt flow index) has been modelled with peak elongation as the output by using response surface methodology. For validation of model the result of peak elongation obtained from the model equation the comparison was made with the results of actual experimentation which shows the variation of ±1 % only.

  11. Filamentous cyanobacteria

    Komárek, Jiří; Komárková, J.; Kling, H.

    San Diego: Academic Press pro Elsevier Science, 2003 - (Wehr, J.; Sheath, R.), s. 117-196 ISBN 0-12-741550-5 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR KSK6005114 Keywords : filamentous cyanobacteria * freshwater algae * North America Subject RIV: EF - Botanics

  12. Internal Motility in Stiffening Actin-Myosin Networks

    Uhde, J; Sackmann, E; Parmeggiani, A; Frey, E; Uhde, Joerg; Keller, Manfred; Sackmann, Erich; Parmeggiani, Andrea; Frey, Erwin

    2003-01-01

    We present a study on filamentous actin solutions containing heavy meromyosin subfragments of myosin II motor molecules. We focus on the viscoelastic phase behavior and internal dynamics of such networks during ATP depletion. Upon simultaneously using micro-rheology and fluorescence microscopy as complementary experimental tools, we find a sol-gel transition accompanied by a sudden onset of directed filament motion. We interpret the sol-gel transition in terms of myosin II enzymology, and suggest a "zipping" mechanism to explain the filament motion in the vicinity of the sol-gel transition.

  13. TWISTED DWARF1 Mediates the Action of Auxin Transport Inhibitors on Actin Cytoskeleton Dynamics.

    Zhu, Jinsheng; Bailly, Aurelien; Zwiewka, Marta; Sovero, Valpuri; Di Donato, Martin; Ge, Pei; Oehri, Jacqueline; Aryal, Bibek; Hao, Pengchao; Linnert, Miriam; Burgardt, Noelia Inés; Lücke, Christian; Weiwad, Matthias; Michel, Max; Weiergräber, Oliver H; Pollmann, Stephan; Azzarello, Elisa; Mancuso, Stefano; Ferro, Noel; Fukao, Yoichiro; Hoffmann, Céline; Wedlich-Söldner, Roland; Friml, Jiří; Thomas, Clément; Geisler, Markus

    2016-04-01

    Plant growth and architecture is regulated by the polar distribution of the hormone auxin. Polarity and flexibility of this process is provided by constant cycling of auxin transporter vesicles along actin filaments, coordinated by a positive auxin-actin feedback loop. Both polar auxin transport and vesicle cycling are inhibited by synthetic auxin transport inhibitors, such as 1-N-naphthylphthalamic acid (NPA), counteracting the effect of auxin; however, underlying targets and mechanisms are unclear. Using NMR, we map the NPA binding surface on the Arabidopsis thaliana ABCB chaperone TWISTED DWARF1 (TWD1). We identify ACTIN7 as a relevant, although likely indirect, TWD1 interactor, and show TWD1-dependent regulation of actin filament organization and dynamics and that TWD1 is required for NPA-mediated actin cytoskeleton remodeling. The TWD1-ACTIN7 axis controls plasma membrane presence of efflux transporters, and as a consequence act7 and twd1 share developmental and physiological phenotypes indicative of defects in auxin transport. These can be phenocopied by NPA treatment or by chemical actin (de)stabilization. We provide evidence that TWD1 determines downstream locations of auxin efflux transporters by adjusting actin filament debundling and dynamizing processes and mediating NPA action on the latter. This function appears to be evolutionary conserved since TWD1 expression in budding yeast alters actin polarization and cell polarity and provides NPA sensitivity. PMID:27053424

  14. Comprehensive phylogenetic reconstruction of amoebozoa based on concatenated analyses of SSU-rDNA and actin genes.

    Daniel J G Lahr

    Full Text Available Evolutionary relationships within Amoebozoa have been the subject of controversy for two reasons: 1 paucity of morphological characters in traditional surveys and 2 haphazard taxonomic sampling in modern molecular reconstructions. These along with other factors have prevented the erection of a definitive system that resolves confidently both higher and lower-level relationships. Additionally, the recent recognition that many protosteloid amoebae are in fact scattered throughout the Amoebozoa suggests that phylogenetic reconstructions have been excluding an extensive and integral group of organisms. Here we provide a comprehensive phylogenetic reconstruction based on 139 taxa using molecular information from both SSU-rDNA and actin genes. We provide molecular data for 13 of those taxa, 12 of which had not been previously characterized. We explored the dataset extensively by generating 18 alternative reconstructions that assess the effect of missing data, long-branched taxa, unstable taxa, fast evolving sites and inclusion of environmental sequences. We compared reconstructions with each other as well as against previously published phylogenies. Our analyses show that many of the morphologically established lower-level relationships (defined here as relationships roughly equivalent to Order level or below are congruent with molecular data. However, the data are insufficient to corroborate or reject the large majority of proposed higher-level relationships (above the Order-level, with the exception of Tubulinea, Archamoebae and Myxogastrea, which are consistently recovered. Moreover, contrary to previous expectations, the inclusion of available environmental sequences does not significantly improve the Amoebozoa reconstruction. This is probably because key amoebozoan taxa are not easily amplified by environmental sequencing methodology due to high rates of molecular evolution and regular occurrence of large indels and introns. Finally, in an effort

  15. Intermediate filaments in small configuration spaces.

    Nöding, Bernd; Köster, Sarah

    2012-02-24

    Intermediate filaments play a key role in cell mechanics. Apart from their great importance from a biomedical point of view, they also act as a very suitable micrometer-sized model system for semiflexible polymers. We perform a statistical analysis of the thermal fluctuations of individual filaments confined in microchannels. The small channel width and the resulting deflections at the walls give rise to a reduction of the configuration space by about 2 orders of magnitude. This circumstance enables us to precisely measure the intrinsic persistence length of vimentin intermediate filaments and to show that they behave as ideal wormlike chains; we observe that small fluctuations in perpendicular planes decouple. Furthermore, the inclusion of results for confined actin filaments demonstrates that the Odijk confinement regime is valid over at least 1 order of magnitude in persistence length. PMID:22463576

  16. Lipid-linked cell wall precursors regulate membrane association of bacterial actin MreB

    Schirner, Kathrin; Eun, Ye-Jin; Dion, Mike; Luo, Yun; Helmann, John D.; Garner, Ethan C.; Walker, Suzanne

    2014-01-01

    Summary The bacterial actin homolog MreB, which is critical for rod shape determination, forms filaments that rotate around the cell width on the inner surface of the cytoplasmic membrane. What determines filament association with the membranes or with other cell wall elongation proteins is not known. Using specific chemical and genetic perturbations while following MreB filament motion, we find that MreB membrane association is an actively regulated process that depends on the presence of li...

  17. Metallic filament formation by aligned oxygen vacancies in ZnO-based resistive switches

    Gu, Tingkun, E-mail: gutk@sdu.edu.cn [School of Electrical Engineering, Shandong University, Jinan 250061 (China)

    2014-05-28

    The electronic structure of ZnO with defects of oxygen vacancies were investigated by using first-principles methods. Some structure models were constructed in order to investigate the effects of the distribution of oxygen vacancies on the electronic properties of ZnO. By analyzing the calculated results, we found that only the aligned oxygen vacancies can form the conducting channel in ZnO, and the transformation of the oxygen vacancy from charged state to neutral state is consistent with the energetics rule of the forming aligned oxygen vacancies. As for the heterojunction of Pt/ZnO/Pt, the oxygen vacancies near the interface of Pt/ZnO depress the local Schottky barrier effectively, and the aligned oxygen vacancies in ZnO form a conducting filament connecting two Pt electrodes. The metallic filament formation in Pt/ZnO/Pt resistive switching cells should be closely related to the carrier injection from Pt electrode into ZnO and the arrangement of oxygen vacancies in ZnO slab.

  18. Cellophane based mini-prep method for DNA extraction from the filamentous fungus Trichoderma reesei

    Henrique-Silva Flavio

    2002-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Methods for the extraction of DNA from filamentous fungi are frequently laborious and time consuming because most of the available protocols include maceration in liquid nitrogen after the mycelium has been grown in a liquid culture. This paper describes a new method to replace those steps, which involves the growth of the mycelium on cellophane disks overlaid on solid medium and the use of glass beads for cell wall disruption. Results Extractions carried out by this method provided approximately 2 μg of total DNA per cellophane disk for the filamentous fungus Trichoderma reesei. To assess the DNA's quality, we made a PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction amplification of a gene introduced by a transformation in this fungus's genome (hph gene, with successful results. We also confirmed the quality of the DNA by the use of Southern blotting to analyze the presence of the same gene, which was easily detected, resulting in a sharply defined and strong band. Conclusions The use of this method enabled us to obtain pure DNA from Trichoderma reesei, dispensing with the laborious and time-consuming steps involved in most protocols. The DNA obtained was found to be suitable for PCR and Southern blot analyses. Another advantage of this method is the fact that several samples can be processed simultaneously, growing the fungus on multiple well cell culture plates. In addition, the absence of maceration also reduces sample handling, minimizing the risks of contamination, a particularly important factor in work involving PCR.

  19. Reversibility and Viscoelastic Properties of Micropillar Supported and Oriented Magnesium Bundled F-Actin.

    Timo Maier

    Full Text Available Filamentous actin is one of the most important cytoskeletal elements. Not only is it responsible for the elastic properties of many cell types, but it also plays a vital role in cellular adhesion and motility. Understanding the bundling kinetics of actin filaments is important in the formation of various cytoskeletal structures, such as filopodia and stress fibers. Utilizing a unique pillar-structured microfluidic device, we investigated the time dependence of bundling kinetics of pillar supported free-standing actin filaments. Microparticles attached to the filaments allowed the measurement of thermal motion, and we found that bundling takes place at lower concentrations than previously found in 3-dimensional actin gels, i.e. actin filaments formed bundles in the presence of 5-12 mM of magnesium chloride in a time-dependent manner. The filaments also displayed long term stability for up to hours after removing the magnesium ions from the buffer, which suggests that there is an extensive hysteresis between cation induced crosslinking and decrosslinking.

  20. Actomyosin contraction, aggregation and traveling waves in a treadmilling actin array

    Oelz, Dietmar; Mogilner, Alex

    2016-04-01

    We use perturbation theory to derive a continuum model for the dynamic actomyosin bundle/ring in the regime of very strong crosslinking. Actin treadmilling is essential for contraction. Linear stability analysis and numerical solutions of the model equations reveal that when the actin treadmilling is very slow, actin and myosin aggregate into equidistantly spaced peaks. When treadmilling is significant, actin filament of one polarity are distributed evenly, while filaments of the opposite polarity develop a shock wave moving with the treadmilling velocity. Myosin aggregates into a sharp peak surfing the crest of the actin wave. Any actomyosin aggregation diminishes contractile stress. The easiest way to maintain higher contraction is to upregulate the actomyosin turnover which destabilizes nontrivial patterns and stabilizes the homogeneous actomyosin distributions. We discuss the model's implications for the experiment.

  1. Nanosecond electric pulses trigger actin responses in plant cells

    We have analyzed the cellular effects of nanosecond pulsed electrical fields on plant cells using fluorescently tagged marker lines in the tobacco cell line BY-2 and confocal laser scanning microscopy. We observe a disintegration of the cytoskeleton in the cell cortex, followed by contraction of actin filaments towards the nucleus, and disintegration of the nuclear envelope. These responses are accompanied by irreversible permeabilization of the plasma membrane manifest as uptake of Trypan Blue. By pretreatment with the actin-stabilizing drug phalloidin, the detachment of transvacuolar actin from the cell periphery can be suppressed, and this treatment can also suppress the irreversible perforation of the plasma membrane. We discuss these findings in terms of a model, where nanosecond pulsed electric fields trigger actin responses that are key events in the plant-specific form of programmed cell death.

  2. Nanosecond electric pulses trigger actin responses in plant cells

    Berghoefer, Thomas; Eing, Christian; Flickinger, Bianca [Institute for Pulsed Power and Microwave Technology (IHM), Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe GmbH, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, 76344 Eggenstein-Leopoldshafen (Germany); Hohenberger, Petra [Botanical Institute I, University of Karlsruhe, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Kaiserstr. 2, 76128 Karlsruhe (Germany); Wegner, Lars H. [Institute for Pulsed Power and Microwave Technology (IHM), Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe GmbH, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, 76344 Eggenstein-Leopoldshafen (Germany); Botanical Institute I, University of Karlsruhe, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Kaiserstr. 2, 76128 Karlsruhe (Germany); Frey, Wolfgang [Institute for Pulsed Power and Microwave Technology (IHM), Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe GmbH, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, 76344 Eggenstein-Leopoldshafen (Germany); Nick, Peter, E-mail: peter.nick@bio.uni-karlsruhe.de [Botanical Institute I, University of Karlsruhe, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Kaiserstr. 2, 76128 Karlsruhe (Germany)

    2009-09-25

    We have analyzed the cellular effects of nanosecond pulsed electrical fields on plant cells using fluorescently tagged marker lines in the tobacco cell line BY-2 and confocal laser scanning microscopy. We observe a disintegration of the cytoskeleton in the cell cortex, followed by contraction of actin filaments towards the nucleus, and disintegration of the nuclear envelope. These responses are accompanied by irreversible permeabilization of the plasma membrane manifest as uptake of Trypan Blue. By pretreatment with the actin-stabilizing drug phalloidin, the detachment of transvacuolar actin from the cell periphery can be suppressed, and this treatment can also suppress the irreversible perforation of the plasma membrane. We discuss these findings in terms of a model, where nanosecond pulsed electric fields trigger actin responses that are key events in the plant-specific form of programmed cell death.

  3. Automated tracing of filaments in 3D electron tomography reconstructions using Sculptor and Situs.

    Rusu, Mirabela; Starosolski, Zbigniew; Wahle, Manuel; Rigort, Alexander; Wriggers, Willy

    2012-05-01

    The molecular graphics program Sculptor and the command-line suite Situs are software packages for the integration of biophysical data across spatial resolution scales. Herein, we provide an overview of recently developed tools relevant to cryo-electron tomography (cryo-ET), with an emphasis on functionality supported by Situs 2.7.1 and Sculptor 2.1.1. We describe a work flow for automatically segmenting filaments in cryo-ET maps including denoising, local normalization, feature detection, and tracing. Tomograms of cellular actin networks exhibit both cross-linked and bundled filament densities. Such filamentous regions in cryo-ET data sets can then be segmented using a stochastic template-based search, VolTrac. The approach combines a genetic algorithm and a bidirectional expansion with a tabu search strategy to localize and characterize filamentous regions. The automated filament segmentation by VolTrac compares well to a manual one performed by expert users, and it allows an efficient and reproducible analysis of large data sets. The software is free, open source, and can be used on Linux, Macintosh or Windows computers. PMID:22433493

  4. Towards the theoretical bases of the folding of the 100-A nucleosome filament

    We attempt to model DNA packaging at the various stages of ever increasing DNA folding from the 100-A nucleosome filament to various further stages leading up to the metaphase chromosome. We have assumed that a phase transition has induced chromatin into a condensed mode. The mean-field model allows the simultaneous discussion of chromatin with packaging ration η and DNA replication at various stages of folding. We derive a formula correlating (during the S phase of the cell cycle) the DNA polymerase velocity rf (measured in nucleotides per minute) in a relation of inverse proportionality with the degree of DNA packaging: rf = λη-1/2, where the dimensional constant λ has been determined. This model suggests that in the heterochromatic regions of chromatin there is reduced activity of DNA polymerases. We discuss the possible relevance of our model to late replicating telomeres in yeast and several higher eukaryotes. (author). 28 refs, 3 tabs

  5. Head-neck domain of Arabidopsis myosin XI, MYA2, fused with GFP produces F-actin patterns that coincide with fast organelle streaming in different plant cells

    Holweg Carola L

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The cytoskeletal mechanisms that underlie organelle transport in plants are intimately linked to acto-myosin function. This function is mediated by the attachment of myosin heads to F-actin and the binding of cargo to the tails. Acto-myosin also powers vigorous cytoplasmic streaming in plant cells. Class XI myosins exhibit strikingly fast velocities and may have extraordinary roles in cellular motility. Studies of the structural basis of organelle transport have focused on the cargo-binding tails of myosin XI, revealing a close relationship with the transport of peroxisomes, mitochondria, and Golgi-vesicles. Links between myosin heads and F-actin-based motility have been less investigated. To address this function, we performed localization studies using the head-neck domain of AtMYA2, a myosin XI from Arabidopsis. Results We expressed the GFP-fused head-neck domain of MYA2 in epidermal cells of various plant species and found that it associated with F-actin. By comparison to other markers such as fimbrin and talin, we revealed that the myosin-labeled F-actin was of a lower quality and absent from the fine microfilament arrays at the cell cortex. However, it colocalized with cytoplasmic (transvacuolar F-actin in areas coinciding with the tracks of fast organelles. This observation correlates well with the proposed function of myosin XI in organelle trafficking. The fact that organelle streaming was reduced in cells expressing the GFP-MYA2-head6IQ indicated that the functionless motor protein inhibits endogenous myosins. Furthermore, co-expression of the GFP-MYA2-head6IQ with other F-actin markers disrupted its attachment to F-actin. In nuclei, the GFP-myosin associated with short bundles of F-actin. Conclusion The localization of the head of MYA2 in living plant cells, as investigated here for the first time, suggests a close linkage between this myosin XI and cytoplasmic microfilaments that support the rapid streaming of

  6. Concentration profiles of actin-binding molecules in lamellipodia

    Falcke, Martin

    2016-04-01

    Motile cells form lamellipodia in the direction of motion, which are flat membrane protrusions containing an actin filament network. The network flows rearward relative to the leading edge of the lamellipodium due to actin polymerization at the front. Thus, actin binding molecules are subject to transport towards the rear of the cell in the bound state and diffuse freely in the unbound state. We analyze this reaction-diffusion-advection process with respect to the concentration profiles of these species and provide an analytic approximation for them. Network flow may cause a depletion zone of actin binding molecules close to the leading edge. The existence of such zone depends on the free molecule concentration in the cell body, on the ratio of the diffusion length to the distance bound molecules travel rearward with the flow before dissociating, and the ratio of the diffusion length to the width of the region with network flow and actin binding. Our calculations suggest the existence of depletion zones for the F-actin cross-linkers filamin and α-actinin in fish keratocytes (and other cell types), which is in line with the small elastic moduli of the F-actin network close to the leading edge found in measurements of the force motile cells are able to exert.

  7. Nuclear actin and protein 4.1: Essential interactions during nuclear assembly in vitro

    Krauss, Sharon Wald; Chen, Cynthia; Penman, Sheldon; Heald, Rebecca

    2003-06-11

    Structural protein 4.1, which has crucial interactions within the spectin-actin lattice of the human red cell membrane skeleton, also is widely distributed at diverse intracellular sites in nucleated cells. We previously showed that 4.1 is essential for assembly of functional nuclei in vitro and that the capacity of 4.1 to bind actin is required. Here we report that 4.1 and actin colocalize in mammalian cell nuclei using fluorescence microscopy and, by higher resolution cell whole mount electron microscopy, are associated on nuclear filaments. We also devised a cell-free assay using Xenopus egg extract containing fluorescent actin to follow actin during nuclear assembly. By directly imaging actin under non-perturbing conditions, the total nuclear actin population is retained and is visualized in situ relative to intact chromatin. We detected actin initially when chromatin and nuclear pores began assembling. As the nuclear lamina assembled, but preceding DNA synthesis, a discrete actin network formed throughout the nucleus. Protein 4.1 epitopes also were detected when actin began to accumulate in nuclei, producing a diffuse coincident pattern. As nuclei matured, actin was detected both coincident with and also independent of 4.1 epitopes. To test whether acquisition of nuclear actin is required for nuclear assembly, the actin inhibitor latrunculin A was added to Xenopus egg extracts during nuclear assembly. Latrunculin A strongly perturbed nuclear assembly and produced distorted nuclear structures containing neither actin nor protein 4.1. Our results suggest that actin as well as 4.1 is necessary for nuclear assembly and that 4.1-actin interactions may be critical.

  8. Cytoplasmic actin is an extracellular insect immune factor which is secreted upon immune challenge and mediates phagocytosis and direct killing of bacteria, and is a Plasmodium Antagonist.

    Simone L Sandiford

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Actin is a highly versatile, abundant, and conserved protein, with functions in a variety of intracellular processes. Here, we describe a novel role for insect cytoplasmic actin as an extracellular pathogen recognition factor that mediates antibacterial defense. Insect actins are secreted from cells upon immune challenge through an exosome-independent pathway. Anopheles gambiae actin interacts with the extracellular MD2-like immune factor AgMDL1, and binds to the surfaces of bacteria, mediating their phagocytosis and direct killing. Globular and filamentous actins display distinct functions as extracellular immune factors, and mosquito actin is a Plasmodium infection antagonist.

  9. Actin-myosin network is required for proper assembly of influenza virus particles

    Kumakura, Michiko; Kawaguchi, Atsushi, E-mail: ats-kawaguchi@md.tsukuba.ac.jp; Nagata, Kyosuke, E-mail: knagata@md.tsukuba.ac.jp

    2015-02-15

    Actin filaments are known to play a central role in cellular dynamics. After polymerization of actin, various actin-crosslinking proteins including non-muscle myosin II facilitate the formation of spatially organized actin filament networks. The actin-myosin network is highly expanded beneath plasma membrane. The genome of influenza virus (vRNA) replicates in the cell nucleus. Then, newly synthesized vRNAs are nuclear-exported to the cytoplasm as ribonucleoprotein complexes (vRNPs), followed by transport to the beneath plasma membrane where virus particles assemble. Here, we found that, by inhibiting actin-myosin network formation, the virus titer tends to be reduced and HA viral spike protein is aggregated on the plasma membrane. These results indicate that the actin-myosin network plays an important role in the virus formation. - Highlights: • Actin-myosin network is important for the influenza virus production. • HA forms aggregations at the plasma membrane in the presence of blebbistatin. • M1 is recruited to the budding site through the actin-myosin network.

  10. Actin-myosin network is required for proper assembly of influenza virus particles

    Actin filaments are known to play a central role in cellular dynamics. After polymerization of actin, various actin-crosslinking proteins including non-muscle myosin II facilitate the formation of spatially organized actin filament networks. The actin-myosin network is highly expanded beneath plasma membrane. The genome of influenza virus (vRNA) replicates in the cell nucleus. Then, newly synthesized vRNAs are nuclear-exported to the cytoplasm as ribonucleoprotein complexes (vRNPs), followed by transport to the beneath plasma membrane where virus particles assemble. Here, we found that, by inhibiting actin-myosin network formation, the virus titer tends to be reduced and HA viral spike protein is aggregated on the plasma membrane. These results indicate that the actin-myosin network plays an important role in the virus formation. - Highlights: • Actin-myosin network is important for the influenza virus production. • HA forms aggregations at the plasma membrane in the presence of blebbistatin. • M1 is recruited to the budding site through the actin-myosin network

  11. Cortactin Adopts a Globular Conformation and Bundles Actin into Sheets

    Cowieson, Nathan P.; King, Gordon; Cookson, David; Ross, Ian; Huber, Thomas; Hume, David A.; Kobe, Bostjan; Martin, Jennifer L. (Queensland); (Aust. Synch.)

    2008-08-21

    Cortactin is a filamentous actin-binding protein that plays a pivotal role in translating environmental signals into coordinated rearrangement of the cytoskeleton. The dynamic reorganization of actin in the cytoskeleton drives processes including changes in cell morphology, cell migration, and phagocytosis. In general, structural proteins of the cytoskeleton bind in the N-terminal region of cortactin and regulatory proteins in the C-terminal region. Previous structural studies have reported an extended conformation for cortactin. It is therefore unclear how cortactin facilitates cross-talk between structural proteins and their regulators. In the study presented here, circular dichroism, chemical cross-linking, and small angle x-ray scattering are used to demonstrate that cortactin adopts a globular conformation, thereby bringing distant parts of the molecule into close proximity. In addition, the actin bundling activity of cortactin is characterized, showing that fully polymerized actin filaments are bundled into sheet-like structures. We present a low resolution structure that suggests how the various domains of cortactin interact to coordinate its array of binding partners at sites of actin branching.

  12. Triggering filamentation using turbulence

    Eeltink, D; Marchiando, N; Hermelin, S; Gateau, J; Brunetti, M; Wolf, J P; Kasparian, J

    2016-01-01

    We study the triggering of single filaments due to turbulence in the beam path for a laser of power below the filamenting threshold. Turbulence can act as a switch between the beam not filamenting and producing single filaments. This 'positive' effect of turbulence on the filament probability, combined with our observation of off-axis filaments suggests the underlying mechanism is modulation instability caused by transverse perturbations. We hereby experimentally explore the interaction of modulation instability and turbulence, commonly associated with multiple-filaments, in the single-filament regime.

  13. Statistical Analysis of Filament Features Based on the Hα Solar Images from 1988 to 2013 by Computer Automated Detection Method

    Hao, Q.; Fang, C.; Cao, W.; Chen, P. F.

    2015-12-01

    We improve our filament automated detection method which was proposed in our previous works. It is then applied to process the full disk Hα data mainly obtained by the Big Bear Solar Observatory from 1988 to 2013, spanning nearly three solar cycles. The butterfly diagrams of the filaments, showing the information of the filament area, spine length, tilt angle, and the barb number, are obtained. The variations of these features with the calendar year and the latitude band are analyzed. The drift velocities of the filaments in different latitude bands are calculated and studied. We also investigate the north-south (N-S) asymmetries of the filament numbers in total and in each subclass classified according to the filament area, spine length, and tilt angle. The latitudinal distribution of the filament number is found to be bimodal. About 80% of all the filaments have tilt angles within [0°, 60°]. For the filaments within latitudes lower (higher) than 50°, the northeast (northwest) direction is dominant in the northern hemisphere and the southeast (southwest) direction is dominant in the southern hemisphere. The latitudinal migrations of the filaments experience three stages with declining drift velocities in each of solar cycles 22 and 23, and it seems that the drift velocity is faster in shorter solar cycles. Most filaments in latitudes lower (higher) than 50° migrate toward the equator (polar region). The N-S asymmetry indices indicate that the southern hemisphere is the dominant hemisphere in solar cycle 22 and the northern hemisphere is the dominant one in solar cycle 23.

  14. Modeling of an Optical Sensor Based on Whispering Gallery Modes (WGMs on the Surface Guiding Layer of Glass Filaments

    Xianfeng Chen

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available A ring-resonator-based refractive index sensor is proposed in this paper. Glass filaments with surface guiding layers created by ion exchange are crossed with a fiber taper to act as a ring resonator sensor. Theoretical simulation of the sensor response is proposed, and optimization of structural parameters including thickness and refractive index of the surface guiding layer and the diameter of the ring resonator for higher sensitivity is investigated. Results show that a detection limit of a variation of ~10-5RIU can be reached. Due to its simple fabrication and easy manipulation as well as good sensing performance, we believe such a micro-cavity sensor will find potential applications in high sensitivity optical sensing.

  15. Ca2+ improves organization of single-stranded DNA bases in human Rad51 filament, explaining stimulatory effect on gene recombination.

    Fornander, Louise H

    2012-02-22

    Human RAD51 protein (HsRad51) catalyses the DNA strand exchange reaction for homologous recombination. To clarify the molecular mechanism of the reaction in vitro being more effective in the presence of Ca(2+) than of Mg(2+), we have investigated the effect of these ions on the structure of HsRad51 filament complexes with single- and double-stranded DNA, the reaction intermediates. Flow linear dichroism spectroscopy shows that the two ionic conditions induce significantly different structures in the HsRad51/single-stranded DNA complex, while the HsRad51/double-stranded DNA complex does not demonstrate this ionic dependence. In the HsRad51/single-stranded DNA filament, the primary intermediate of the strand exchange reaction, ATP/Ca(2+) induces an ordered conformation of DNA, with preferentially perpendicular orientation of nucleobases relative to the filament axis, while the presence of ATP/Mg(2+), ADP/Mg(2+) or ADP/Ca(2+) does not. A high strand exchange activity is observed for the filament formed with ATP/Ca(2+), whereas the other filaments exhibit lower activity. Molecular modelling suggests that the structural variation is caused by the divalent cation interfering with the L2 loop close to the DNA-binding site. It is proposed that the larger Ca(2+) stabilizes the loop conformation and thereby the protein-DNA interaction. A tight binding of DNA, with bases perpendicularly oriented, could facilitate strand exchange.

  16. Role of actin in auxin transport and transduction of gravity

    Hu, S.; Basu, S.; Brady, S.; Muday, G.

    Transport of the plant hormone auxin is polar and the direction of the hormone movement appears to be controlled by asymmetric distribution of auxin transport protein complexes. Changes in the direction of auxin transport are believed to drive asymmetric growth in response to changes in the gravity vector. To test the possibility that asymmetric distribution of the auxin transport protein complex is mediated by attachment to the actin cytoskeleton, a variety of experimental approaches have been used. The most direct demonstration of the role of the actin cytoskeleton in localization of the protein complex is the ability of one protein in this complex to bind to affinity columns containing actin filaments. Additionally, treatments of plant tissues with drugs that fragment the actin c toskeleton reducey polar transport. In order to explore this actin interaction and the affect of gravity on auxin transport and developmental polarity, embryos of the brown alga, Fucus have been examined. Fucus zygotes are initially symmetrical, but develop asymmetry in response to environmental gradients, with light gradients being the best- characterized signal. Gravity will polarize these embryos and gravity-induced polarity is randomized by clinorotation. Auxin transport also appears necessary for environmental controls of polarity, since auxin efflux inhibitors perturb both photo- and gravity-polarization at a very discrete temporal window within six hours after fertilization. The actin cytoskeleton has previously been shown to reorganize after fertilization of Fucus embryos leading to formation of an actin patch at the site of polar outgrowth. These actin patches still form in Fucus embryos treated with auxin efflux inhibitors, yet the position of these patches is randomized. Together, these results suggest that there are connections between the actin cytoskeleton, auxin transport, and gravity oriented growth and development. (Supported by NASA Grant: NAG2-1203)

  17. Filamentous Fungi.

    Powers-Fletcher, Margaret V; Kendall, Brian A; Griffin, Allen T; Hanson, Kimberly E

    2016-06-01

    Filamentous mycoses are often associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Prompt diagnosis and aggressive treatment are essential for good clinical outcomes in immunocompromised patients. The host immune response plays an essential role in determining the course of exposure to potential fungal pathogens. Depending on the effectiveness of immune response and the burden of organism exposure, fungi can either be cleared or infection can occur and progress to a potentially fatal invasive disease. Nonspecific cellular immunity (i.e., neutrophils, natural killer [NK] cells, and macrophages) combined with T-cell responses are the main immunologic mechanisms of protection. The most common potential mold pathogens include certain hyaline hyphomycetes, endemic fungi, the Mucorales, and some dematiaceous fungi. Laboratory diagnostics aimed at detecting and differentiating these organisms are crucial to helping clinicians make informed decisions about treatment. The purpose of this chapter is to provide an overview of the medically important fungal pathogens, as well as to discuss the patient characteristics, antifungal-therapy considerations, and laboratory tests used in current clinical practice for the immunocompromised host. PMID:27337469

  18. Double localization of F-actin in chemoattractant-stimulated polymorphonuclear leucocytes.

    Lepidi, H; Benoliel, A M; Mege, J L; Bongrand, P; Capo, C

    1992-09-01

    Uniform concentrations of chemoattractants such as formylpeptides induced a morphological polarization of human polymorphonuclear leucocytes (PMNs) and a concentration of F-actin at the cell front. They also induced a transient increase in filamentous actin (F-actin) which preceded the cell shape change. We combined fluorescence microscopy and image analysis to study the localization of F-actin, as revealed by a specific probe (bodipyTM phallacidin) in suspended PMNs stimulated by chemoattractants. F-actin exhibited remarkable concentration in focal points after a 30 s exposure to 10(-8) M formylmethionyl-leucyl-phenylalanine (fMet-Leu-Phe), although no shape change of PMNs was detectable. A 10-min incubation with formylpeptide (10(-6) to 10(-9) M) induced the morphological polarization of PMNs and the appearance of a principal focus of F-actin in the cell head region and a secondary focus in the cell posterior end. The distribution of F-actin-associated fluorescence in 2D images of polarized PMNs might be due to an actual concentration of F-actin in privileged areas, to a local concentration of plasma membrane drawing filamentous actin or to variations in the cell volume. Then, we studied the distribution of a cytoplasmic marker, fluorescein diacetate and a membrane probe, TMA-DPH, in unstimulated rounded PMNs and in spherical and morphologically polarized PMNs stimulated by formylpeptide. The distribution of neither of these probes was correlated with F-actin distribution, especially in rounded PMNs stimulated 30 s with 10(-8) M fMet-Leu-Phe, suggesting that F-actin was concentrated in two foci located in the cell head region and in the cell posterior end. In addition, zymosan-activated serum induced the morphological polarization of PMNs and the appearance of two foci of filamentous actin, demonstrating that binding of formylpeptide to its specific receptor was not required for F-actin reorganization. We conclude that the accumulation of F-actin probably

  19. 3D Filament Network Segmentation with Multiple Active Contours

    Xu, Ting; Vavylonis, Dimitrios; Huang, Xiaolei

    2014-03-01

    Fluorescence microscopy is frequently used to study two and three dimensional network structures formed by cytoskeletal polymer fibers such as actin filaments and microtubules. While these cytoskeletal structures are often dilute enough to allow imaging of individual filaments or bundles of them, quantitative analysis of these images is challenging. To facilitate quantitative, reproducible and objective analysis of the image data, we developed a semi-automated method to extract actin networks and retrieve their topology in 3D. Our method uses multiple Stretching Open Active Contours (SOACs) that are automatically initialized at image intensity ridges and then evolve along the centerlines of filaments in the network. SOACs can merge, stop at junctions, and reconfigure with others to allow smooth crossing at junctions of filaments. The proposed approach is generally applicable to images of curvilinear networks with low SNR. We demonstrate its potential by extracting the centerlines of synthetic meshwork images, actin networks in 2D TIRF Microscopy images, and 3D actin cable meshworks of live fission yeast cells imaged by spinning disk confocal microscopy.

  20. Thin Filament-Reconstituted Skinned Muscle Fibers for the Study of Muscle Physiology

    Hideaki Fujita; Satoshi Kurihara; Norio Fukuda; Yoshikazu Tsukasaki; Sayaka Higuchi

    2011-01-01

    We review the use of thin filament-reconstituted muscle fibers in the study of muscle physiology. Thin filament extraction and reconstitution protocol is a powerful technique to study the role of each component of the thin filament. It is also useful for studying the properties of genetically modified molecules such as actin and tropomyosin. We also review the combination of this protocol with sinusoidal analysis, which will provide a solid technique for determining the effect of regulatory p...

  1. Three-dimensional Reconstruction of Tarantula Myosin Filaments Suggests How Phosphorylation May Regulate Myosin Activity

    Alamo, Lorenzo; Wriggers, Willy; Pinto, Antonio; Bártoli, Fulvia; Salazar, Leiría; Zhao, Fa-Qing; Craig, Roger; Padrón, Raúl

    2008-01-01

    Muscle contraction involves the interaction of the myosin heads of the thick filaments with actin subunits of the thin filaments. Relaxation occurs when this interaction is blocked by molecular switches on these filaments. In many muscles, myosin-linked regulation involves phosphorylation of the myosin regulatory light chains (RLC). Electron microscopy of vertebrate smooth muscle myosin molecules (regulated by phosphorylation) has provided insight into the relaxed structure, revealing that my...

  2. Effects of polymerization and nucleotide identity on the conformational dynamics of the bacterial actin homolog MreB

    Colavin, Alexandre; Hsin, Jen; Huang, Kerwyn Casey

    2014-01-01

    Cytoskeletal filaments drive many dynamic cellular processes, such as the regulation of shape by actin networks in eukaryotes and by the actin homolog MreB in rod-shaped bacteria. Here, we use all-atom molecular dynamics simulations to demonstrate close parallels between the conformational dynamics of actin and MreB, in which polymerization induces flattening of MreB subunits that restructures the ATP binding pocket to promote hydrolysis. We also find that ATP-bound MreB filaments are substan...

  3. Study of self-compliance behaviors and internal filament characteristics in intrinsic SiO{sub x}-based resistive switching memory

    Chang, Yao-Feng, E-mail: yfchang@utexas.edu; Zhou, Fei; Chen, Ying-Chen; Lee, Jack C. [Microelectronics Research Center, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas 78758 (United States); Fowler, Burt [PrivaTran, LLC, 1250 Capital of Texas Highway South, Bldg 3, Ste 400, Austin, Texas 78746 (United States)

    2016-01-18

    Self-compliance characteristics and reliability optimization are investigated in intrinsic unipolar silicon oxide (SiO{sub x})-based resistive switching (RS) memory using TiW/SiO{sub x}/TiW device structures. The program window (difference between SET voltage and RESET voltage) is dependent on external series resistance, demonstrating that the SET process is due to a voltage-triggered mechanism. The program window has been optimized for program/erase disturbance immunity and reliability for circuit-level applications. The SET and RESET transitions have also been characterized using a dynamic conductivity method, which distinguishes the self-compliance behavior due to an internal series resistance effect (filament) in SiO{sub x}-based RS memory. By using a conceptual “filament/resistive gap (GAP)” model of the conductive filament and a proton exchange model with appropriate assumptions, the internal filament resistance and GAP resistance can be estimated for high- and low-resistance states (HRS and LRS), and are found to be independent of external series resistance. Our experimental results not only provide insights into potential reliability issues but also help to clarify the switching mechanisms and device operating characteristics of SiO{sub x}-based RS memory.

  4. Endocytosis in filamentous fungi

    Kalkman, Edward R I C

    2007-01-01

    Endocytosis is little understood in filamentous fungi. For some time it has been controversial as to whether endocytosis occurs in filamentous fungi. A comparative genomics analysis between Saccharomyces cerevisiae and 10 genomes of filamentous fungal species showed that filamentous fungi possess complex endocytic machineries. The use of the endocytic marker dye FM4-64, and various vesicle trafficking inhibitors revealed many similarities between endocytosis in the filamentous ...

  5. Sequence and comparative genomic analysis of actin-related proteins.

    Muller, Jean; Oma, Yukako; Vallar, Laurent; Friederich, Evelyne; Poch, Olivier; Winsor, Barbara

    2005-12-01

    Actin-related proteins (ARPs) are key players in cytoskeleton activities and nuclear functions. Two complexes, ARP2/3 and ARP1/11, also known as dynactin, are implicated in actin dynamics and in microtubule-based trafficking, respectively. ARP4 to ARP9 are components of many chromatin-modulating complexes. Conventional actins and ARPs codefine a large family of homologous proteins, the actin superfamily, with a tertiary structure known as the actin fold. Because ARPs and actin share high sequence conservation, clear family definition requires distinct features to easily and systematically identify each subfamily. In this study we performed an in depth sequence and comparative genomic analysis of ARP subfamilies. A high-quality multiple alignment of approximately 700 complete protein sequences homologous to actin, including 148 ARP sequences, allowed us to extend the ARP classification to new organisms. Sequence alignments revealed conserved residues, motifs, and inserted sequence signatures to define each ARP subfamily. These discriminative characteristics allowed us to develop ARPAnno (http://bips.u-strasbg.fr/ARPAnno), a new web server dedicated to the annotation of ARP sequences. Analyses of sequence conservation among actins and ARPs highlight part of the actin fold and suggest interactions between ARPs and actin-binding proteins. Finally, analysis of ARP distribution across eukaryotic phyla emphasizes the central importance of nuclear ARPs, particularly the multifunctional ARP4. PMID:16195354

  6. Actin is required for IFT regulation in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii.

    Avasthi, Prachee; Onishi, Masayuki; Karpiak, Joel; Yamamoto, Ryosuke; Mackinder, Luke; Jonikas, Martin C; Sale, Winfield S; Shoichet, Brian; Pringle, John R; Marshall, Wallace F

    2014-09-01

    Assembly of cilia and flagella requires intraflagellar transport (IFT), a highly regulated kinesin-based transport system that moves cargo from the basal body to the tip of flagella [1]. The recruitment of IFT components to basal bodies is a function of flagellar length, with increased recruitment in rapidly growing short flagella [2]. The molecular pathways regulating IFT are largely a mystery. Because actin network disruption leads to changes in ciliary length and number, actin has been proposed to have a role in ciliary assembly. However, the mechanisms involved are unknown. In Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, conventional actin is found in both the cell body and the inner dynein arm complexes within flagella [3, 4]. Previous work showed that treating Chlamydomonas cells with the actin-depolymerizing compound cytochalasin D resulted in reversible flagellar shortening [5], but how actin is related to flagellar length or assembly remains unknown. Here we utilize small-molecule inhibitors and genetic mutants to analyze the role of actin dynamics in flagellar assembly in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. We demonstrate that actin plays a role in IFT recruitment to basal bodies during flagellar elongation and that when actin is perturbed, the normal dependence of IFT recruitment on flagellar length is lost. We also find that actin is required for sufficient entry of IFT material into flagella during assembly. These same effects are recapitulated with a myosin inhibitor, suggesting that actin may act via myosin in a pathway by which flagellar assembly is regulated by flagellar length. PMID:25155506

  7. Intensification of the 5.9-nm actin layer line in contracting muscle.

    Matsubara, I; Yagi, N; Miura, H; Ozeki, M; Izumi, T

    According to the cross-bridge model of muscle contraction, an interaction of myosin heads with interdigitating actin filaments produces tension. Although X-ray equatorial diffraction patterns of active (contracting) muscle show that the heads are in the vicinity of the actin filaments, structural proof of actual attachment of heads to actin during contraction has been elusive. We show here that during contraction of frog skeletal muscle, the 5.9-nm layer line arising from the genetic helix of actin is intensified by as much as 56% of the change which occurs when muscle enters rigor, using a two-dimensional X-ray detector. This provides strong structural evidence that myosin heads do in fact attach during contraction. PMID:6334236

  8. Photodynamic therapy of actinic keratoses with 8% and 16% methyl aminolaevulinate and home-based daylight exposure: a double-blinded randomized clinical trial

    Wiegell, S.R.; Haedersdal, M.; Eriksen, P.; Wulf, H.C.

    2009-01-01

    Background Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is an effective but time-consuming and often painful treatment for actinic keratosis (AK). Home-based daylight-PDT has the potential to facilitate treatment procedure and to reduce associated pain due to continuous activation of small amounts of porphyrins....... Moreover, a reduced methyl aminolaevulinate (MAL) concentration may reduce associated inflammation, making the treatment more tolerable for the patients. Objectives To compare response rates and adverse effects after PDT using conventional 16% and 8% MAL with home-based daylight exposure in treatment of AK....... Methods Thirty patients with mostly thin-grade AK of the face or scalp were treated with 16% and 8% MAL-PDT in two symmetrical areas after application of sunscreen. Immediately after, patients left the hospital with instructions to spend the remaining day outside at home in daylight. Patients scored pain...

  9. Filamentous Growth in Eremothecium Fungi

    Oskarsson, Therese

    , this thesis deals with some of the aspects of hyphal growth, which is an important virulence factor for pathogenic fungi infecting both humans and plants. Hyphal establishment through continuous polar growth is a complex process, requiring the careful coordination of a large subset of proteins involved......-regulatory activity of AgGts1, the protein could have additional actin organizing properties. In the second and third part, this thesis addresses the use of A. gossypii and its relative E. cymbalariae as model organisms for filamentous growth. A series of assays analyzed the capability of Eremothecium genus fungi...... of molecular tools for E. cymbalariae to enable a faster and more efficient approach for genetic comparisons between Eremothecium genus fungi....

  10. Actin Cytoskeleton and Golgi Involvement in Barley stripe mosaic virus Movement and Cell Wall Localization of Triple Gene Block Proteins

    Hyoun-Sub Lim

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Barley stripe mosaic virus (BSMV induces massive actin filament thickening at the infection front of infected Nicotiana benthamiana leaves. To determine the mechanisms leading to actin remodeling, fluorescent protein fusions of the BSMV triple gene block (TGB proteins were coexpressed in cells with the actin marker DsRed: Talin. TGB ectopic expression experiments revealed that TGB3 is a major elicitor of filament thickening, that TGB2 resulted in formation of intermediate DsRed:Talin filaments, and that TGB1 alone had no obvious effects on actin filament structure. Latrunculin B (LatB treatments retarded BSMV cell-to-cell movement, disrupted actin filament organization, and dramatically decreased the proportion of paired TGB3 foci appearing at the cell wall (CW. BSMV infection of transgenic plants tagged with GFP-KDEL exhibited membrane proliferation and vesicle formation that were especially evident around the nucleus. Similar membrane proliferation occurred in plants expressing TGB2 and/or TGB3, and DsRed: Talin fluorescence in these plants colocalized with the ER vesicles. TGB3 also associated with the Golgi apparatus and overlapped with cortical vesicles appearing at the cell periphery. Brefeldin A treatments disrupted Golgi and also altered vesicles at the CW, but failed to interfere with TGB CW localization. Our results indicate that actin cytoskeleton interactions are important in BSMV cell-to-cell movement and for CW localization of TGB3.

  11. A LIM Domain Protein from Tobacco Involved in Actin-Bundling and Histone Gene Transcription

    Danièle Moes; Sabrina Gatti; Céline Hoffmann; Monika Dieterle; Flora Moreau; Katrin Neumann; Marc Schumacher

    2013-01-01

    The two LIM domain-containing proteins from plants (LIMs) typically exhibit a dual cytoplasmic-nuclear distribution,suggesting that,in addition to their previously described roles in actin cytoskeleton organization,they participate in nuclear processes.Using a south-western blot-based screen aimed at identifying factors that bind to plant histone gene promoters,we isolated a positive clone containing the tobacco LIM protein WLIM2 (NtWLIM2) cDNA.Using both green fluorescent protein (GFP) fusion-and immunology-based strategies,we provide clear evidence that NtWLIM2 localizes to the actin cytoskeleton,the nucleus,and the nucleolus.Interestingly,the disruption of the actin cytoskeleton by latrunculin B significantly increases NtWLIM2 nuclear fraction,pinpointing a possible novel cytoskeletal-nuclear crosstalk.Biochemical and electron microscopy experiments reveal the ability of NtWLIM2 to directly bind to actin filaments and to crosslink the latter into thick actin bundles.Electrophoretic mobility shift assays show that NtWLIM2 specifically binds to the conserved octameric cis-elements (Oct) of the Arabidopsis histone H4A748 gene promoter and that this binding largely relies on both LIM domains.Importantly,reporter-based experiments conducted in Arabidopsis and tobacco protoplasts confirm the ability of NtWLIM2 to bind to and activate the H4A748 gene promoter in live cells.Expression studies indicate the constitutive presence of NtWLIM2 mRNA and NtWLIM2 protein during tobacco BY-2 cell proliferation and cell cycle progression,suggesting a role of NtWLIM2 in the activation of basal histone gene expression.Interestingly,both live cell and in vitro data support NtWLIM2 di/oligomerization.We propose that NtWLIM2 functions as an actin-stabilizing protein,which,upon cytoskeleton remodeling,shuttles to the nucleus in order to modify gene expression.

  12. Rat alveolar myofibroblasts acquire alpha-smooth muscle actin expression during bleomycin-induced pulmonary fibrosis.

    Vyalov, S. L.; Gabbiani, G.; Kapanci, Y.

    1993-01-01

    The majority of fibroblasts in alveolar septa are characterized by the presence of cytoplasmic bundles of microfilaments that contain cytoplasmic actin isoforms; these cells have been named contractile interstitial cells or V-type myofibroblasts. In the rat, they express desmin as intermediate filament protein. In this study, we explored the possibility that modulation and replication of such septal fibroblasts result in the appearance of alpha-smooth muscle (alpha-SM) actin-positive myofibro...

  13. Electron tomography of cryofixed, isometrically contracting insect flight muscle reveals novel actin-myosin interactions.

    Shenping Wu

    Full Text Available Isometric muscle contraction, where force is generated without muscle shortening, is a molecular traffic jam in which the number of actin-attached motors is maximized and all states of motor action are trapped with consequently high heterogeneity. This heterogeneity is a major limitation to deciphering myosin conformational changes in situ.We used multivariate data analysis to group repeat segments in electron tomograms of isometrically contracting insect flight muscle, mechanically monitored, rapidly frozen, freeze substituted, and thin sectioned. Improved resolution reveals the helical arrangement of F-actin subunits in the thin filament enabling an atomic model to be built into the thin filament density independent of the myosin. Actin-myosin attachments can now be assigned as weak or strong by their motor domain orientation relative to actin. Myosin attachments were quantified everywhere along the thin filament including troponin. Strong binding myosin attachments are found on only four F-actin subunits, the "target zone", situated exactly midway between successive troponin complexes. They show an axial lever arm range of 77°/12.9 nm. The lever arm azimuthal range of strong binding attachments has a highly skewed, 127° range compared with X-ray crystallographic structures. Two types of weak actin attachments are described. One type, found exclusively in the target zone, appears to represent pre-working-stroke intermediates. The other, which contacts tropomyosin rather than actin, is positioned M-ward of the target zone, i.e. the position toward which thin filaments slide during shortening.We present a model for the weak to strong transition in the myosin ATPase cycle that incorporates azimuthal movements of the motor domain on actin. Stress/strain in the S2 domain may explain azimuthal lever arm changes in the strong binding attachments. The results support previous conclusions that the weak attachments preceding force generation are very

  14. Aspects of plant cell growth and the actin cytoskeleton: lessons from root hairs

    Ruijter, de, A.

    1999-01-01

    The main topic the thesis addresses is the role of the actin cytoskeleton in the growth process of plant cells. Plant growth implies a combination of cell division and cell expansion. The cytoskeleton, which exists of microtubules and actin filaments, plays a major role in both processes. Before cell growth takes place, a new cell is formed by cell division. The orientation of the division plane most often predicts the orientation of cell expansion, and a correct positioning of the division p...

  15. Simvastatin enhances Rho/actin/cell rigidity pathway contributing to mesenchymal stem cells’ osteogenic differentiation

    Tai IC

    2015-09-01

    osteoinductive factor and acts by increasing actin filament organization and cell rigidity combined with osteoconductive biomaterials, may benefit stem-cell-based bone regeneration. Keywords: statins, RhoA, cytoskeleton, osteogenic differentiation, BMSCs

  16. DNA segregation by the bacterial actin AlfA during Bacillus subtilis growth and development

    Becker, Eric; Herrera, Nick C; Gunderson, Felizza Q.; Derman, Alan I.; Dance, Amber L; Sims, Jennifer; Larsen, Rachel A.; Pogliano, Joe

    2006-01-01

    We here identify a protein (AlfA; actin like filament) that defines a new family of actins that are only distantly related to MreB and ParM. AlfA is required for segregation of Bacillus subtilis plasmid pBET131 (a mini pLS32-derivative) during growth and sporulation. A 3-kb DNA fragment encoding alfA and a downstream gene (alfB) is necessary and sufficient for plasmid stability. AlfA-GFP assembles dynamic cytoskeletal filaments that rapidly turn over (t1/2

  17. Direct regulation of Arp2/3 complex activity and function by the actin binding protein coronin

    Humphries, Christine L.; Balcer, Heath I.; D'Agostino, Jessica L.; Winsor, Barbara; Drubin, David G.; Barnes, Georjana; Andrews, Brenda J.; Goode, Bruce L.

    2002-01-01

    Mechanisms for activating the actin-related protein 2/3 (Arp2/3) complex have been the focus of many recent studies. Here, we identify a novel mode of Arp2/3 complex regulation mediated by the highly conserved actin binding protein coronin. Yeast coronin (Crn1) physically associates with the Arp2/3 complex and inhibits WA- and Abp1-activated actin nucleation in vitro. The inhibition occurs specifically in the absence of preformed actin filaments, suggesting that Crn1 may restrict Arp2/3 compl...

  18. Exploration of microfluidic devices based on multi-filament threads and textiles: A review.

    Nilghaz, A; Ballerini, D R; Shen, W

    2013-01-01

    In this paper, we review the recent progress in the development of low-cost microfluidic devices based on multifilament threads and textiles for semi-quantitative diagnostic and environmental assays. Hydrophilic multifilament threads are capable of transporting aqueous and non-aqueous fluids via capillary action and possess desirable properties for building fluid transport pathways in microfluidic devices. Thread can be sewn onto various support materials to form fluid transport channels without the need for the patterned hydrophobic barriers essential for paper-based microfluidic devices. Thread can also be used to manufacture fabrics which can be patterned to achieve suitable hydrophilic-hydrophobic contrast, creating hydrophilic channels which allow the control of fluids flow. Furthermore, well established textile patterning methods and combination of hydrophilic and hydrophobic threads can be applied to fabricate low-cost microfluidic devices that meet the low-cost and low-volume requirements. In this paper, we review the current limitations and shortcomings of multifilament thread and textile-based microfluidics, and the research efforts to date on the development of fluid flow control concepts and fabrication methods. We also present a summary of different methods for modelling the fluid capillary flow in microfluidic thread and textile-based systems. Finally, we summarized the published works of thread surface treatment methods and the potential of combining multifilament thread with other materials to construct devices with greater functionality. We believe these will be important research focuses of thread- and textile-based microfluidics in future. PMID:24086179

  19. The Formin Diaphanous Regulates Myoblast Fusion through Actin Polymerization and Arp2/3 Regulation.

    Su Deng

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available The formation of multinucleated muscle cells through cell-cell fusion is a conserved process from fruit flies to humans. Numerous studies have shown the importance of Arp2/3, its regulators, and branched actin for the formation of an actin structure, the F-actin focus, at the fusion site. This F-actin focus forms the core of an invasive podosome-like structure that is required for myoblast fusion. In this study, we find that the formin Diaphanous (Dia, which nucleates and facilitates the elongation of actin filaments, is essential for Drosophila myoblast fusion. Following cell recognition and adhesion, Dia is enriched at the myoblast fusion site, concomitant with, and having the same dynamics as, the F-actin focus. Through analysis of Dia loss-of-function conditions using mutant alleles but particularly a dominant negative Dia transgene, we demonstrate that reduction in Dia activity in myoblasts leads to a fusion block. Significantly, no actin focus is detected, and neither branched actin regulators, SCAR or WASp, accumulate at the fusion site when Dia levels are reduced. Expression of constitutively active Dia also causes a fusion block that is associated with an increase in highly dynamic filopodia, altered actin turnover rates and F-actin distribution, and mislocalization of SCAR and WASp at the fusion site. Together our data indicate that Dia plays two roles during invasive podosome formation at the fusion site: it dictates the level of linear F-actin polymerization, and it is required for appropriate branched actin polymerization via localization of SCAR and WASp. These studies provide new insight to the mechanisms of cell-cell fusion, the relationship between different regulators of actin polymerization, and invasive podosome formation that occurs in normal development and in disease.

  20. Differential Effects of Caldesmon on the Intermediate Conformational States of Polymerizing Actin*

    Huang, Renjian; Grabarek, Zenon; Wang, Chih-Lueh Albert

    2009-01-01

    The actin-binding protein caldesmon (CaD) reversibly inhibits smooth muscle contraction. In non-muscle cells, a shorter CaD isoform co-exists with microfilaments in the stress fibers at the quiescent state, but the phosphorylated CaD is found at the leading edge of migrating cells where dynamic actin filament remodeling occurs. We have studied the effect of a C-terminal fragment of CaD (H32K) on the kinetics of the in vitro actin polymerization by monitoring the fluorescence of pyrene-labeled...

  1. Filamentous Fungi Fermentation

    Nørregaard, Anders; Stocks, Stuart; Woodley, John;

    2014-01-01

    Filamentous fungi (including microorganisms such as Aspergillus niger and Rhizopus oryzae) represent an enormously important platform for industrial fermentation. Two particularly valuable features are the high yield coefficients and the ability to secrete products. However, the filamentous...

  2. The role of actin networks in cellular mechanosensing

    Azatov, Mikheil

    Physical processes play an important role in many biological phenomena, such as wound healing, organ development, and tumor metastasis. During these processes, cells constantly interact with and adapt to their environment by exerting forces to mechanically probe the features of their surroundings and generating appropriate biochemical responses. The mechanisms underlying how cells sense the physical properties of their environment are not well understood. In this thesis, I present my studies to investigate cellular responses to the stiffness and topography of the environment. In order to sense the physical properties of their environment, cells dynamically reorganize the structure of their actin cytoskeleton, a dynamic network of biopolymers, altering the shape and spatial distribution of protein assemblies. Several observations suggest that proteins that crosslink actin filaments may play an important role in cellular mechanosensitivity. Palladin is an actin-crosslinking protein that is found in the lamellar actin network, stress fibers and focal adhesions, cellular structures that are critical for mechanosensing of the physical environment. By virtue of its close interactions with these structures in the cell, palladin may play an important role in cell mechanics. However, the role of actin crosslinkers in general, and palladin in particular, in cellular force generation and mechanosensing is not well known. I have investigated the role of palladin in regulating the plasticity of the actin cytoskeleton and cellular force generation in response to alterations in substrate stiffness. I have shown that the expression levels of palladin modulate the forces exerted by cells and their ability to sense substrate stiffness. Perturbation experiments also suggest that palladin levels in cells altered myosin motor activity. These results suggest that the actin crosslinkers, such as palladin, and myosin motors coordinate for optimal cell function and to prevent aberrant

  3. In Situ Time-Resolved FRET Reveals Effects of Sarcomere Length on Cardiac Thin-Filament Activation

    Li, King-Lun; Rieck, Daniel; Solaro, R. John; Dong, Wenji

    2014-01-01

    During cardiac thin-filament activation, the N-domain of cardiac troponin C (N-cTnC) binds to Ca2+ and interacts with the actomyosin inhibitory troponin I (cTnI). The interaction between N-cTnC and cTnI stabilizes the Ca2+-induced opening of N-cTnC and is presumed to also destabilize cTnI–actin interactions that work together with steric effects of tropomyosin to inhibit force generation. Recently, our in situ steady-state FRET measurements based on N-cTnC opening suggested that at long sarco...

  4. Hierarchical Cross-linked F-actin Networks: Understanding Structure and Assembly

    Hirst, Linda; Nguyen, Lam

    2009-11-01

    The protein, F-actin provides us with an interesting system in which to investigate the assembly properties of semi-flexible filaments in the presence of cross-linkers. Recently it was observed that F-actin, in the presence of the cross-linker alpha-actinin at high molar ratios will generate a novel hierarchical network of filament bundles. We investigate this system using coarse-grained molecular dynamics (MD) simulation, confocal microscopy and x-ray scattering. We have studied the F-actin/alpha-actinin system in detail with different actin conc. (C) and alpha-actinin/actin molar ratios (gamma). Confocal microscopy and analysis shows that the assembled systems fall into one of 3 phases depending on C and gamma: (1) loosely connected network of F-actin and bundles, (2) loosely connected network of dense domains and (3) uniform network of bundles. This can be explained and replicated using MD simulation. We have also examined different types of cross-linkers to represent the proteins, fascin and filamin. Results show that phase formation is related to the flexibility in binding between F-actin and cross-linkers. This degree of freedom, possible with longer cross-linkers allows the formation of branch points and thus bundle networks.

  5. A prophage-encoded actin-like protein required for efficient viral DNA replication in bacteria.

    Donovan, Catriona; Heyer, Antonia; Pfeifer, Eugen; Polen, Tino; Wittmann, Anja; Krämer, Reinhard; Frunzke, Julia; Bramkamp, Marc

    2015-05-26

    In host cells, viral replication is localized at specific subcellular sites. Viruses that infect eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells often use host-derived cytoskeletal structures, such as the actin skeleton, for intracellular positioning. Here, we describe that a prophage, CGP3, integrated into the genome of Corynebacterium glutamicum encodes an actin-like protein, AlpC. Biochemical characterization confirms that AlpC is a bona fide actin-like protein and cell biological analysis shows that AlpC forms filamentous structures upon prophage induction. The co-transcribed adaptor protein, AlpA, binds to a consensus sequence in the upstream promoter region of the alpAC operon and also interacts with AlpC, thus connecting circular phage DNA to the actin-like filaments. Transcriptome analysis revealed that alpA and alpC are among the early induced genes upon excision of the CGP3 prophage. Furthermore, qPCR analysis of mutant strains revealed that both AlpA and AlpC are required for efficient phage replication. Altogether, these data emphasize that AlpAC are crucial for the spatio-temporal organization of efficient viral replication. This is remarkably similar to actin-assisted membrane localization of eukaryotic viruses that use the actin cytoskeleton to concentrate virus particles at the egress sites and provides a link of evolutionary conserved interactions between intracellular virus transport and actin. PMID:25916847

  6. Cortactin promotes exosome secretion by controlling branched actin dynamics.

    Sinha, Seema; Hoshino, Daisuke; Hong, Nan Hyung; Kirkbride, Kellye C; Grega-Larson, Nathan E; Seiki, Motoharu; Tyska, Matthew J; Weaver, Alissa M

    2016-07-18

    Exosomes are extracellular vesicles that influence cellular behavior and enhance cancer aggressiveness by carrying bioactive molecules. The mechanisms that regulate exosome secretion are poorly understood. Here, we show that the actin cytoskeletal regulatory protein cortactin promotes exosome secretion. Knockdown or overexpression of cortactin in cancer cells leads to a respective decrease or increase in exosome secretion, without altering exosome cargo content. Live-cell imaging revealed that cortactin controls both trafficking and plasma membrane docking of multivesicular late endosomes (MVEs). Regulation of exosome secretion by cortactin requires binding to the branched actin nucleating Arp2/3 complex and to actin filaments. Furthermore, cortactin, Rab27a, and coronin 1b coordinately control stability of cortical actin MVE docking sites and exosome secretion. Functionally, the addition of purified exosomes to cortactin-knockdown cells rescued defects of those cells in serum-independent growth and invasion. These data suggest a model in which cortactin promotes exosome secretion by stabilizing cortical actin-rich MVE docking sites. PMID:27402952

  7. Hippocampal Dendritic Spines Are Segregated Depending on Their Actin Polymerization.

    Domínguez-Iturza, Nuria; Calvo, María; Benoist, Marion; Esteban, José Antonio; Morales, Miguel

    2016-01-01

    Dendritic spines are mushroom-shaped protrusions of the postsynaptic membrane. Spines receive the majority of glutamatergic synaptic inputs. Their morphology, dynamics, and density have been related to synaptic plasticity and learning. The main determinant of spine shape is filamentous actin. Using FRAP, we have reexamined the actin dynamics of individual spines from pyramidal hippocampal neurons, both in cultures and in hippocampal organotypic slices. Our results indicate that, in cultures, the actin mobile fraction is independently regulated at the individual spine level, and mobile fraction values do not correlate with either age or distance from the soma. The most significant factor regulating actin mobile fraction was the presence of astrocytes in the culture substrate. Spines from neurons growing in the virtual absence of astrocytes have a more stable actin cytoskeleton, while spines from neurons growing in close contact with astrocytes show a more dynamic cytoskeleton. According to their recovery time, spines were distributed into two populations with slower and faster recovery times, while spines from slice cultures were grouped into one population. Finally, employing fast lineal acquisition protocols, we confirmed the existence of loci with high polymerization rates within the spine. PMID:26881098

  8. Size distribution of linear and helical polymers in actin solution analyzed by photon counting histogram.

    Terada, Naofumi; Shimozawa, Togo; Ishiwata, Shin'ichi; Funatsu, Takashi

    2007-03-15

    Actin is a ubiquitous protein that is a major component of the cytoskeleton, playing an important role in muscle contraction and cell motility. At steady state, actin monomers and filaments (F-actin) coexist, and actin subunits continuously attach and detach at the filament ends. However, the size distribution of actin oligomers in F-actin solution has never been clarified. In this study, we investigated the size distribution of actin oligomers using photon-counting histograms. For this purpose, actin was labeled with a fluorescent dye, and the emitted photons were detected by confocal optics (the detection volume was of femtoliter (fL) order). Photon-counting histograms were analyzed to obtain the number distribution of actin oligomers in the detection area from their brightness, assuming that the brightness of an oligomer was proportional to the number of protomers. We found that the major populations at physiological ionic strength were 1-5mers. For data analysis, we successfully applied the theory of linear and helical aggregations of macromolecules. The model postulates three states of actin, i.e., monomers, linear polymers, and helical polymers. Here we obtained three parameters: the equilibrium constants for polymerization of linear polymers, K(l)=(5.2 +/- 1.1) x 10(6) M(-1), and helical polymers, K(h)=(1.6 +/- 0.5) x 10(7) M(-1); and the ratio of helical to linear trimers, gamma = (3.6 +/- 2.3) x 10(-2). The excess free energy of transforming a linear trimer to a helical trimer, which is assumed to be a nucleus for helical polymers, was calculated to be 2.0 kcal/mol. These analyses demonstrate that the oligomeric phase at steady state is predominantly composed of linear 1-5mers, and the transition from linear to helical polymers occurs on the level of 5-7mers. PMID:17172301

  9. Probing the Physical Structures of Dense Filaments

    Li, Di

    2015-08-01

    Filament is a common feature in cosmological structures of various scales, ranging from dark matter cosmic web, galaxy clusters, inter-galactic gas flows, to Galactic ISM clouds. Even within cold dense molecular cores, filaments have been detected. Theories and simulations with (or without) different combination of physical principles, including gravity, thermal balance, turbulence, and magnetic field, can reproduce intriguing images of filaments. The ubiquity of filaments and the similarity in simulated ones make physical parameters, beyond dust column density, a necessity for understanding filament evolution. I report three projects attempting to measure physical parameters of filaments. We derive the volume density of a dense Taurus filament based on several cyanoacetylene transitions observed by GBT and ART. We measure the gas temperature of the OMC 2-3 filament based on combined GBT+VLA ammonia images. We also measured the sub-millimeter polarization vectors along OMC3. These filaments were found to be likely a cylinder-type structure, without dynamic heating, and likely accreting mass along the magnetic field lines.

  10. Antibody-based analysis reveals “filamentous vs. non-filamentous” and “cytoplasmic vs. nuclear” crosstalk of cytoskeletal proteins

    Kumeta, Masahiro, E-mail: kumeta@lif.kyoto-u.ac.jp [Graduate School of Biostudies, Kyoto University, Kyoto 606-8501 (Japan); Hirai, Yuya; Yoshimura, Shige H. [Graduate School of Biostudies, Kyoto University, Kyoto 606-8501 (Japan); Horigome, Tsuneyoshi [Graduate School of Science and Technology, Niigata University, Niigata 950-2181 (Japan); Takeyasu, Kunio [Graduate School of Biostudies, Kyoto University, Kyoto 606-8501 (Japan)

    2013-12-10

    To uncover the molecular composition and dynamics of the functional scaffold for the nucleus, three fractions of biochemically-stable nuclear protein complexes were extracted and used as immunogens to produce a variety of monoclonal antibodies. Many helix-based cytoskeletal proteins were identified as antigens, suggesting their dynamic contribution to nuclear architecture and function. Interestingly, sets of antibodies distinguished distinct subcellular localization of a single isoform of certain cytoskeletal proteins; distinct molecular forms of keratin and actinin were found in the nucleus. Their nuclear shuttling properties were verified by the apparent nuclear accumulations under inhibition of CRM1-dependent nuclear export. Nuclear keratins do not take an obvious filamentous structure, as was revealed by non-filamentous cytoplasmic keratin-specific monoclonal antibody. These results suggest the distinct roles of the helix-based cytoskeletal proteins in the nucleus. - Highlights: • A set of monoclonal antibodies were raised against nuclear scaffold proteins. • Helix-based cytoskeletal proteins were involved in nuclear scaffold. • Many cytoskeletal components shuttle into the nucleus in a CRM1-dependent manner. • Sets of antibodies distinguished distinct subcellular localization of a single isoform. • Nuclear keratin is soluble and does not form an obvious filamentous structure.

  11. Interplay between passive tension and strong and weak binding cross- bridges in insect indirect flight muscle. A functional dissection by gelsolin-mediated thin filament removal

    1993-01-01

    The interplay between passive and active mechanical properties of indirect flight muscle of the waterbug (Lethocerus) was investigated. A functional dissection of the relative contribution of cross-bridges, actin filaments, and C filaments to tension and stiffness of passive, activated, and rigor fibers was carried out by comparing mechanical properties at different ionic strengths of sarcomeres with and without thin filaments. Selective thin filament removal was accomplished by treatment wit...

  12. G-actin guides p53 nuclear transport: potential contribution of monomeric actin in altered localization of mutant p53

    Saha, Taniya; Guha, Deblina; Manna, Argha; Panda, Abir Kumar; Bhat, Jyotsna; Chatterjee, Subhrangsu; Sa, Gaurisankar

    2016-01-01

    p53 preserves genomic integrity by restricting anomaly at the gene level. Till date, limited information is available for cytosol to nuclear shuttling of p53; except microtubule-based trafficking route, which utilizes minus-end directed motor dynein. The present study suggests that monomeric actin (G-actin) guides p53 traffic towards the nucleus. Histidine-tag pull-down assay using purified p53(1–393)-His and G-actin confirms direct physical association between p53 and monomeric G-actin. Co-immunoprecipitation data supports the same. Confocal imaging explores intense perinuclear colocalization between p53 and G-actin. To address atomistic details of the complex, constraint-based docked model of p53:G-actin complex was generated based on crystal structures. MD simulation reveals that p53 DNA-binding domain arrests very well the G-actin protein. Docking benchmark studies have been carried out for a known crystal structure, 1YCS (complex between p53DBD and BP2), which validates the docking protocol we adopted. Co-immunoprecipitation study using “hot-spot” p53 mutants suggested reduced G-actin association with cancer-associated p53 conformational mutants (R175H and R249S). Considering these findings, we hypothesized that point mutation in p53 structure, which diminishes p53:G-actin complexation results in mutant p53 altered subcellular localization. Our model suggests p53Arg249 form polar-contact with Arg357 of G-actin, which upon mutation, destabilizes p53:G-actin interaction and results in cytoplasmic retention of p53R249S. PMID:27601274

  13. G-actin guides p53 nuclear transport: potential contribution of monomeric actin in altered localization of mutant p53.

    Saha, Taniya; Guha, Deblina; Manna, Argha; Panda, Abir Kumar; Bhat, Jyotsna; Chatterjee, Subhrangsu; Sa, Gaurisankar

    2016-01-01

    p53 preserves genomic integrity by restricting anomaly at the gene level. Till date, limited information is available for cytosol to nuclear shuttling of p53; except microtubule-based trafficking route, which utilizes minus-end directed motor dynein. The present study suggests that monomeric actin (G-actin) guides p53 traffic towards the nucleus. Histidine-tag pull-down assay using purified p53(1-393)-His and G-actin confirms direct physical association between p53 and monomeric G-actin. Co-immunoprecipitation data supports the same. Confocal imaging explores intense perinuclear colocalization between p53 and G-actin. To address atomistic details of the complex, constraint-based docked model of p53:G-actin complex was generated based on crystal structures. MD simulation reveals that p53 DNA-binding domain arrests very well the G-actin protein. Docking benchmark studies have been carried out for a known crystal structure, 1YCS (complex between p53DBD and BP2), which validates the docking protocol we adopted. Co-immunoprecipitation study using "hot-spot" p53 mutants suggested reduced G-actin association with cancer-associated p53 conformational mutants (R175H and R249S). Considering these findings, we hypothesized that point mutation in p53 structure, which diminishes p53:G-actin complexation results in mutant p53 altered subcellular localization. Our model suggests p53Arg249 form polar-contact with Arg357 of G-actin, which upon mutation, destabilizes p53:G-actin interaction and results in cytoplasmic retention of p53R249S. PMID:27601274

  14. Cell stress promotes the association of phosphorylated HspB1 with F-actin.

    Joseph P Clarke

    Full Text Available Previous studies have suggested that the small heat shock protein, HspB1, has a direct influence on the dynamics of cytoskeletal elements, in particular, filamentous actin (F-actin polymerization. In this study we have assessed the influence of HspB1 phosphorylation on its interaction(s with F-actin. We first determined the distribution of endogenous non-phosphorylated HspB1, phosphorylated HspB1 and F-actin in neuroendocrine PC12 cells by immunocytochemistry and confocal microscopy. We then investigated a potential direct interaction between HspB1 with F-actin by precipitating F-actin directly with biotinylated phalloidin followed by Western analyses; the reverse immunoprecipitation of HspB1 was also carried out. The phosphorylation influence of HspB1 in this interaction was investigated by using pharmacologic inhibition of p38 MAPK. In control cells, HspB1 interacts with F-actin as a predominantly non-phosphorylated protein, but subsequent to stress there is a redistribution of HspB1 to the cytoskeletal fraction and a significantly increased association of pHspB1 with F-actin. Our data demonstrate HspB1 is found in a complex with F-actin both in phosphorylated and non-phosphorylated forms, with an increased association of pHspB1 with F-actin after heat stress. Overall, our study combines both cellular and biochemical approaches to show cellular localization and direct demonstration of an interaction between endogenous HspB1 and F-actin using methodolgy that specifically isolates F-actin.

  15. Broken Detailed Balance of Filament Dynamics in Active Networks

    Gladrow, J.; Fakhri, N.; MacKintosh, F. C.; Schmidt, C. F.; Broedersz, C. P.

    2016-06-01

    Myosin motor proteins drive vigorous steady-state fluctuations in the actin cytoskeleton of cells. Endogenous embedded semiflexible filaments such as microtubules, or added filaments such as single-walled carbon nanotubes are used as novel tools to noninvasively track equilibrium and nonequilibrium fluctuations in such biopolymer networks. Here, we analytically calculate shape fluctuations of semiflexible probe filaments in a viscoelastic environment, driven out of equilibrium by motor activity. Transverse bending fluctuations of the probe filaments can be decomposed into dynamic normal modes. We find that these modes no longer evolve independently under nonequilibrium driving. This effective mode coupling results in nonzero circulatory currents in a conformational phase space, reflecting a violation of detailed balance. We present predictions for the characteristic frequencies associated with these currents and investigate how the temporal signatures of motor activity determine mode correlations, which we find to be consistent with recent experiments on microtubules embedded in cytoskeletal networks.

  16. Swi5-Sfr1 protein stimulates Rad51-mediated DNA strand exchange reaction through organization of DNA bases in the presynaptic filament.

    Fornander, Louise H

    2013-12-03

    The Swi5-Sfr1 heterodimer protein stimulates the Rad51-promoted DNA strand exchange reaction, a crucial step in homologous recombination. To clarify how this accessory protein acts on the strand exchange reaction, we have analyzed how the structure of the primary reaction intermediate, the Rad51/single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) complex filament formed in the presence of ATP, is affected by Swi5-Sfr1. Using flow linear dichroism spectroscopy, we observe that the nucleobases of the ssDNA are more perpendicularly aligned to the filament axis in the presence of Swi5-Sfr1, whereas the bases are more randomly oriented in the absence of Swi5-Sfr1. When using a modified version of the natural protein where the N-terminal part of Sfr1 is deleted, which has no affinity for DNA but maintained ability to stimulate the strand exchange reaction, we still observe the improved perpendicular DNA base orientation. This indicates that Swi5-Sfr1 exerts its activating effect through interaction with the Rad51 filament mainly and not with the DNA. We propose that the role of a coplanar alignment of nucleobases induced by Swi5-Sfr1 in the presynaptic Rad51/ssDNA complex is to facilitate the critical matching with an invading double-stranded DNA, hence stimulating the strand exchange reaction.

  17. Ship-of-opportunity based phycocyanin fluorescence monitoring of the filamentous cyanobacteria bloom dynamics in the Baltic Sea

    Seppälä, J.; Ylöstalo, P.; Kaitala, S.; Hällfors, S.; Raateoja, M.; Maunula, P.

    2007-07-01

    Distribution of cyanobacteria cannot be evaluated using chlorophyll a (Chl a) in vivo fluorescence, as most of their Chl a is located in non-fluorescing photosystem I. Phycobilin fluorescence, in turn, is noted as a useful tool in the detection of cyanobacterial blooms. We applied phycocyanin (PC) fluorometer in the monitoring of the filamentous cyanobacterial bloom in the Baltic Sea. For the bloom forming filamentous cyanobacteria Aphanizomenon flos-aquae and Nodularia spumigena, PC fluorescence maximum was identified using the excitation-emission fluorescence matrix. Consequently, the optical setup of our instrument was noted to be appropriate for the detection of PC, and with minor or no interference from Chl a and phycoerythrin fluorescence, respectively. During summer 2005, the instrument was installed on a ferryboat commuting between Helsinki (Finland) and Travemünde (Germany), and data were collected during 32 transects providing altogether 200 000 fluorescence records. PC in vivo fluorescence was compared with Chl ain vivo fluorescence and turbidity measured simultaneously, and with Chl a concentration and biomass of the bloom forming filamentous cyanobacteria determined from discrete water samples. PC fluorescence showed a linear relation to the biomass of the bloom forming filamentous cyanobacteria, and the other sources of PC fluorescence are considered minor in the open Baltic Sea. Estimated by PC fluorescence, cyanobacterial bloom initiated late June at the Northern Baltic Proper, rapidly extended to the central Baltic Proper and the Gulf of Finland, and peaked in the mid-July with values up to 10 mg l -1 (fresh weight). In late July, bloom vanished in most areas. During single transects, or for the whole summer, the variability in Chl a concentrations was explained more by PC fluorescence than by Chl a fluorescence. Thus, filamentous cyanobacteria dominated the overall variability in phytoplankton biomass. Consequently, we show that during the

  18. Solar Features - Prominences and Filaments - Filaments

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Filaments are formed in magnetic loops that hold relatively cool, dense gas suspended above the surface of the Sun (David Hathaway/NASA)

  19. Plasmin enzymatic activity in the presence of actin

    Yusova E. I.

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Aim. To study the changes in the plasmin activity towards substrates with high and low molecular mass in the presence of actin. Methods. The proteins used for this investigation were obtained by affinity chromatography and gel-filtration. The plasmin enzymatic activity was determined by a turbidimetric assay and a chromogenic substrate-based assay. The enzyme linked immunosorbent assay and biotin-avidin-phosphatase system were used to study the interaction of plasminogen and its fragments with actin. Results. It was shown that G-actin causes 1.5-fold decrease in the rate of polymeric fibrin hydrolysis by plasmin and Glu-plasminogen activated by the tissue plasminogen activator. However, actin did not impede plasmin autolysis and had no influence on its amidase activity. We have studied an interaction of biotinylated Glu-plasminogen and its fragments (kringle 1-3, kringle 4 and mini-plasminogen with immobilized G-actin. Glu-plasminogen and kringle 4 had a high affinity towards actin (C50 is 113 and 117 nM correspondingly. Mini-plasminogen and kringe 4 did not bind to actin. A similar affinity of Glu-plasminogen and kringle 1-3 towards actin proves the involvement of the kringle 1-3 lysine-binding sites of the native plasminogen form in the actin interaction. Conclusions. Actin can modulate plasmin specificity towards high molecular mass substrates through its interaction with lysine-binding sites of the enzyme kringle domains. Actin inhibition of the fibrinolytic activity of plasmin is due to its competition with fibrin for thelysine binding sites of plasminogen/plasmin.

  20. Structural changes of the regulatory proteins bound to the thin filaments in skeletal muscle contraction by X-ray fiber diffraction

    In order to clarify the structural changes related to the regulation mechanism in skeletal muscle contraction, the intensity changes of thin filament-based reflections were investigated by X-ray fiber diffraction. The time course and extent of intensity changes of the first to third order troponin (TN)-associated meridional reflections with a basic repeat of 38.4 nm were different for each of these reflections. The intensity of the first and second thin filament layer lines changed in a reciprocal manner both during initial activation and during the force generation process. The axial spacings of the TN-meridional reflections decreased by ∼0.1% upon activation relative to the relaxing state and increased by ∼0.24% in the force generation state, in line with that of the 2.7-nm reflection. Ca2+-binding to TN triggered the shortening and a change in the helical symmetry of the thin filaments. Modeling of the structural changes using the intensities of the thin filament-based reflections suggested that the conformation of the globular core domain of TN altered upon activation, undergoing additional conformational changes at the tension plateau. The tail domain of TN moved together with tropomyosin during contraction. The results indicate that the structural changes of regulatory proteins bound to the actin filaments occur in two steps, the first in response to the Ca2+-binding and the second induced by actomyosin interaction

  1. Papaverine Prevents Vasospasm by Regulation of Myosin Light Chain Phosphorylation and Actin Polymerization in Human Saphenous Vein

    Hocking, Kyle M.; Putumbaka, Gowthami; Wise, Eric S.; Cheung-Flynn, Joyce; Brophy, Colleen M.; Komalavilas, Padmini

    2016-01-01

    Objective Papaverine is used to prevent vasospasm in human saphenous veins (HSV) during vein graft preparation prior to implantation as a bypass conduit. Papaverine is a nonspecific inhibitor of phosphodiesterases, leading to increases in both intracellular cGMP and cAMP. We hypothesized that papaverine reduces force by decreasing intracellular calcium concentrations ([Ca2+]i) and myosin light chain phosphorylation, and increasing actin depolymerization via regulation of actin regulatory protein phosphorylation. Approach and Results HSV was equilibrated in a muscle bath, pre-treated with 1 mM papaverine followed by 5 μM norepinephrine, and force along with [Ca2+]i levels were concurrently measured. Filamentous actin (F-actin) level was measured by an in vitro actin assay. Tissue was snap frozen to measure myosin light chain and actin regulatory protein phosphorylation. Pre-treatment with papaverine completely inhibited norepinephrine-induced force generation, blocked increases in [Ca2+]i and led to a decrease in the phosphorylation of myosin light chain. Papaverine pre-treatment also led to increased phosphorylation of the heat shock-related protein 20 (HSPB6) and the vasodilator stimulated phosphoprotein (VASP), as well as decreased filamentous actin (F-actin) levels suggesting depolymerization of actin. Conclusions These results suggest that papaverine-induced force inhibition of HSV involves [Ca2+]i-mediated inhibition of myosin light chain phosphorylation and actin regulatory protein phosphorylation-mediated actin depolymerization. Thus, papaverine induces sustained inhibition of contraction of HSV by the modulation of both myosin cross-bridge formation and actin cytoskeletal dynamics and is a pharmacological alternative to high pressure distention to prevent vasospasm. PMID:27136356

  2. Actin and Arp2/3 localize at the centrosome of interphase cells

    Hubert, Thomas; Vandekerckhove, Joel; Gettemans, Jan, E-mail: jan.gettemans@vib-ugent.be

    2011-01-07

    Research highlights: {yields} Actin was detected at the centrosome with the anti-actin antibody 1C7 that recognizes antiparallel ('lower dimer') actin dimers. {yields} Centrosomal actin was found in interphase but not mitotic MDA-MB-231 cells. {yields} Neither the anti-actin antibody C4 that binds to globular, monomer actin, nor the anti-actin antibody 2G2 that recognizes the nuclear conformation of actin detect actin at the centrosome. {yields} The Arp2/3 complex transiently localizes at the pericentriolar matrix but not at the centrioles of interphase HEK 293T cells. -- Abstract: Although many actin binding proteins such as cortactin and the Arp2/3 activator WASH localize at the centrosome, the presence and conformation of actin at the centrosome has remained elusive. Here, we report the localization of actin at the centrosome in interphase but not in mitotic MDA-MB-231 cells. Centrosomal actin was detected with the anti-actin antibody 1C7 that recognizes antiparallel ('lower dimer') actin dimers. In addition, we report the transient presence of the Arp2/3 complex at the pericentriolar matrix but not at the centrioles of interphase HEK 293T cells. Overexpression of an Arp2/3 component resulted in expansion of the pericentriolar matrix and selective accumulation of the Arp2/3 component in the pericentriolar matrix. Altogether, we hypothesize that the centrosome transiently recruits Arp2/3 to perform processes such as centrosome separation prior to mitotic entry, whereas the observed constitutive centrosomal actin staining in interphase cells reinforces the current model of actin-based centrosome reorientation toward the leading edge in migrating cells.

  3. Human endothelial actin-binding protein (ABP-280, nonmuscle filamin): a molecular leaf spring.

    Gorlin, J B; Yamin, R; Egan, S; Stewart, M; Stossel, T P; Kwiatkowski, D J; Hartwig, J H

    1990-09-01

    Actin-binding protein (ABP-280, nonmuscle filamin) is a ubiquitous dimeric actin cross-linking phosphoprotein of peripheral cytoplasm, where it promotes orthogonal branching of actin filaments and links actin filaments to membrane glycoproteins. The complete nucleotide sequence of human endothelial cell ABP cDNA predicts a polypeptide subunit chain of 2,647 amino acids, corresponding to 280 kD, also the mass derived from physical measurements of the native protein. The actin-binding domain is near the amino-terminus of the subunit where the amino acid sequence is similar to other actin filament binding proteins, including alpha-actinin, beta-spectrin, dystrophin, and Dictyostelium abp-120. The remaining 90% of the sequence comprises 24 repeats, each approximately 96 residues long, predicted to have stretches of beta-sheet secondary structure interspersed with turns. The first 15 repeats may have substantial intrachain hydrophobic interactions and overlap in a staggered fashion to yield a backbone with mechanical resilience. Sequence insertions immediately before repeats 16 and 24 predict two hinges in the molecule near points where rotary-shadowed molecules appear to swivel in electron micrographs. Both putative hinge regions are susceptible to cleavage by proteases and the second also contains the site that binds the platelet glycoprotein Ib/IX complex. Phosphorylation consensus sequences are also located in the hinges or near them. Degeneracy within every even-numbered repeat between 16 and 24 and the insertion before repeat 24 may convert interactions within chains to interactions between chains to account for dimer formation within a domain of 7 kD at the carboxy-terminus. The structure of ABP dimers resembles a leaf spring. Interchain interactions hold the leaves firmly together at one end, whereas intrachain hydrophobic bonds reinforce the arms of the spring where the leaves diverge, making it sufficiently stiff to promote high-angle branching of actin

  4. The Actin-Binding Protein α-Adducin Is Required for Maintaining Axon Diameter

    Sérgio Carvalho Leite

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available The actin-binding protein adducin was recently identified as a component of the neuronal subcortical cytoskeleton. Here, we analyzed mice lacking adducin to uncover the function of this protein in actin rings. α-adducin knockout mice presented progressive axon enlargement in the spinal cord and optic and sciatic nerves, followed by axon degeneration and loss. Using stimulated emission depletion super-resolution microscopy, we show that a periodic subcortical actin cytoskeleton is assembled in every neuron type inspected including retinal ganglion cells and dorsal root ganglia neurons. In neurons devoid of adducin, the actin ring diameter increased, although the inter-ring periodicity was maintained. In vitro, the actin ring diameter adjusted as axons grew, suggesting the lattice is dynamic. Our data support a model in which adducin activity is not essential for actin ring assembly and periodicity but is necessary to control the diameter of both actin rings and axons and actin filament growth within rings.

  5. Cloning and characterization of the actin gene from Puccinia striiformis f. sp. tritici.

    Liu, Jie; Zhang, Qiong; Chang, Qing; Zhuang, Hua; Huang, Li-Li; Kang, Zhen-Sheng

    2012-06-01

    The fungus Puccinia striiformis f. sp. tritici, the causal agent of wheat stripe rust, is an obligate biotrophic basidiomycete. Urediniospores are the most common spore type involved in the epidemiology of this disease. Tip growth of germ tubes of germinated urediniospores is a key step during infection of wheat, but few studies have investigated it so far. Recent research has found that actin is closely associated with hyphal tip growth. In this study, we have cloned and obtained the full-length actin cDNA from P. striiformis f. sp. tritici and characterized its expression. Furthermore, actin filament (F-actin) patterns were visualized microscopically during germ tube formation. The most conspicuous actin-containing structures were actin patches. They were mainly concentrated near the hyphal tip and scattered throughout the cortex. By using cytochalasin B, we observed that depolymerization of F-actin greatly reduced the germination rate of urediniospores and disrupted the transport of vesicles to the germ tube tip, indicating that F-actin played a key role in the tip growth of P. striiformis f. sp. tritici. This work helps us to understand the tip growth mechanism of P. striiformis f. sp. tritici, and may provide a theoretical framework for designing novel pesticides. PMID:22806107

  6. Non-Lte Modelling of the EUV Filament Based on Soho/sumer Observations of the Hydrogen Lyman Lines

    Schwartz, Pavol; Heinzel, Petr; Schmieder, B.

    Nizozemí: ESA Publications Division, 2005 - (Danesy, D.), ---. (SP. 600). ISBN 92-9092-911-1. [European Solar Physics Meeting /11/. Leuven (BE), 11.09.2005-16.09.2005] R&D Projects: GA AV ČR IAA3003203 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : filaments * hydrogen Lyman lines * non-LTE modeling Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics

  7. Redundant mechanisms recruit actin into the contractile ring in silkworm spermatocytes.

    Wei Chen

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available Cytokinesis is powered by the contraction of actomyosin filaments within the newly assembled contractile ring. Microtubules are a spindle component that is essential for the induction of cytokinesis. This induction could use central spindle and/or astral microtubules to stimulate cortical contraction around the spindle equator (equatorial stimulation. Alternatively, or in addition, induction could rely on astral microtubules to relax the polar cortex (polar relaxation. To investigate the relationship between microtubules, cortical stiffness, and contractile ring assembly, we used different configurations of microtubules to manipulate the distribution of actin in living silkworm spermatocytes. Mechanically repositioned, noninterdigitating microtubules can induce redistribution of actin at any region of the cortex by locally excluding cortical actin filaments. This cortical flow of actin promotes regional relaxation while increasing tension elsewhere (normally at the equatorial cortex. In contrast, repositioned interdigitating microtubule bundles use a novel mechanism to induce local stimulation of contractility anywhere within the cortex; at the antiparallel plus ends of central spindle microtubules, actin aggregates are rapidly assembled de novo and transported laterally to the equatorial cortex. Relaxation depends on microtubule dynamics but not on RhoA activity, whereas stimulation depends on RhoA activity but is largely independent of microtubule dynamics. We conclude that polar relaxation and equatorial stimulation mechanisms redundantly supply actin for contractile ring assembly, thus increasing the fidelity of cleavage.

  8. Filamentous influenza viruses

    Dadonaite, Bernadeta; Vijyakrishnan, Swetha; Fodor, Ervin; Bhella, David; Hutchinson, Edward C.

    2016-01-01

    Clinical isolates of influenza virus produce pleomorphic virus particles, including extremely long filamentous virions. In contrast, strains of influenza that have adapted to laboratory growth typically produce only spherical virions. As a result, the filamentous phenotype has been overlooked in most influenza virus research. Recent advances in imaging and improved animal models have highlighted the distinct structure and functional relevance of filamentous virions. In this review we summaris...

  9. Effects of nitrogen ion implantation on lily pollen germination and the distribution of the actin cytoskeleton during pollen germination

    2000-01-01

    The effects of low energy nitrogen ion implantation on lily (Lilium davidii Duch.) pollen germination and the distribution of the actin cytoskeleton during pollen germination have been studied. Preliminary results showed that the ratio of pollen germination increased from (16.0±1.6)% to (27.0±2.1)% when implanted with nitrogen ions by 100 keV and a dose of 1013 ions/cm2. Further experiments were performed by staining the actin filaments in pollen with rhodamine-phalloidin and detected by using laser confocol microscopy. After hydration for 10 h, the actin filaments in ion implanted pollen grains tended to form thick bundles oriented in parallel or ring shape at the germinal furrow, indicating that the effect of nitrogen ion implantation on the germination of pollen might be mediated by reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton.

  10. Isolation of Nebulin from Rabbit Skeletal Muscle and Its Interaction with Actin

    Ryo Chitose

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Nebulin is about 800 kDa filamentous protein that binds the entire thin filament of vertebrate skeletal muscle sarcomeres. Nebulin cannot be isolated from muscle except in a completely denatured form by direct solubilization of myofibrils with SDS because nebulin is hardly soluble under salt conditions. In the present study, nebulin was solubilized by a salt solution containing 1 M urea and purified by DEAE-Toyopearl column chromatography via 4 M urea elution. Rotary-shadowed images of nebulin showed entangled knit-like particles, about 20 nm in diameter. The purified nebulin bound to actin filaments to form loose bundles. Nebulin was confirmed to bind actin, α-actinin, β-actinin, and tropomodulin, but not troponin or tropomyosin. The data shows that full-length nebulin can be also obtained in a functional and presumably native form, verified by data from experiments using recombinant subfragments.

  11. Fluorescence and electron microscopic study of intracellular F-actin in concanavalin A-treated and cytochalasin B-treated Ehrlich ascites tumor cells.

    Watanabe,Sadahiro

    1986-12-01

    Full Text Available To investigate the involvement of actin filaments in concanavalin A (Con A-induced cap formation and cytochalasin B (CB-induced zeiotic knob migration, the distribution of F-actin was studied in Con A-treated and CB-treated Ehrlich ascites tumor cells (EATC by fluorescence microscopy using heavy meromyosin conjugated with a fluorescent dye, N-(7-dimethylamino-4-methylcoumarinyl maleimide, (DACM-HMM. In non-treated cells, the diffuse fluorescence of DACM-HMM was observed in the cytoplasm, particularly intensely under the plasma membrane and around the nucleus. In Con A- and CB-treated cells, the fluorescence was seen at Con A-induced-capped and CB-induced-knob-accumulated regions. This fluorescence was more intense in CB-treated cells. To study the actin filaments in these fluorescent regions more clearly, the soluble components of the cells were eliminated by treatment with Triton X-100 or saponin solution containing a low concentration of glutaraldehyde, and the detergent-treated and saponin-treated cells were observed under a transmission electron microscope. Concentrated actin filaments were observed directly beneath the Con A-induced capping area and CB-induced zeiotic knob-accumulation area. The area of concentrated actin filaments appeared to correspond to the electron dense area observed in the identical region in the cells fixed without detergent treatment. More actin filaments were observed in CB-treated cells than in Con A-treated ones.

  12. Identification of Actin-Binding Proteins from Maize Pollen

    Staiger, C.J.

    2004-01-13

    Specific Aims--The goal of this project was to gain an understanding of how actin filament organization and dynamics are controlled in flowering plants. Specifically, we proposed to identify unique proteins with novel functions by investigating biochemical strategies for the isolation and characterization of actin-binding proteins (ABPs). In particular, our hunt was designed to identify capping proteins and nucleation factors. The specific aims included: (1) to use F-actin affinity chromatography (FAAC) as a general strategy to isolate pollen ABPs (2) to produce polyclonal antisera and perform subcellular localization in pollen tubes (3) to isolate cDNA clones for the most promising ABPs (4) to further purify and characterize ABP interactions with actin in vitro. Summary of Progress By employing affinity chromatography on F-actin or DNase I columns, we have identified at least two novel ABPs from pollen, PrABP80 (gelsolin-like) and ZmABP30, We have also cloned and expressed recombinant protein, as well as generated polyclonal antisera, for 6 interesting ABPs from Arabidopsis (fimbrin AtFIM1, capping protein a/b (AtCP), adenylyl cyclase-associated protein (AtCAP), AtCapG & AtVLN1). We performed quantitative analyses of the biochemical properties for two of these previously uncharacterized ABPs (fimbrin and capping protein). Our studies provide the first evidence for fimbrin activity in plants, demonstrate the existence of barbed-end capping factors and a gelsolin-like severing activity, and provide the quantitative data necessary to establish and test models of F-actin organization and dynamics in plant cells.

  13. A kinematic description of the trajectories of Listeria monocytogenes propelled by actin comet tails

    Tambe, Dhananjay; Shenoy, Vivek

    2007-03-01

    The bacterial pathogen Listeria monocytogenes propels itself in the cytoplasm of the infected cells by forming a filamentous comet tail assembled by the polymerization of the cytoskeletal protein, actin. While a great deal is known about the molecular processes that lead to actin based movement, most macroscale aspects of motion, including the nature of the trajectories traced out by the motile bacteria are not well understood. Listeria moving between a glass-slide and cover slip in a Xenopus frog egg extract motility assay is observed to display a number of geometrically fascinating trajectories including sine curves, serpentine shapes, circles, and a variety of spirals. We have developed a dynamic model that provides a unified description of these seemingly unrelated trajectories. A key ingredient of the model is a torque (not included in any microscopic models to date) that arises from the rotation of the propulsive force about the body-axis of the bacterium. The trajectories of bacteria executing both steady and saltatory motion are found to be in excellent agreement with the predictions of our dynamic model. When the constraints that lead to planar motion are removed, our model predicts motion along regular helical trajectories, observed in recent experiments. We discover from the analysis of the trajectories of spherical beads that the comet tail revolves around the bead.

  14. The F-actin bundler α-actinin Ain1 is tailored for ring assembly and constriction during cytokinesis in fission yeast.

    Li, Yujie; Christensen, Jenna R; Homa, Kaitlin E; Hocky, Glen M; Fok, Alice; Sees, Jennifer A; Voth, Gregory A; Kovar, David R

    2016-06-01

    The actomyosin contractile ring is a network of cross-linked actin filaments that facilitates cytokinesis in dividing cells. Contractile ring formation has been well characterized in Schizosaccharomyces pombe, in which the cross-linking protein α-actinin SpAin1 bundles the actin filament network. However, the specific biochemical properties of SpAin1 and whether they are tailored for cytokinesis are not known. Therefore we purified SpAin1 and quantified its ability to dynamically bind and bundle actin filaments in vitro using a combination of bulk sedimentation assays and direct visualization by two-color total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy. We found that, while SpAin1 bundles actin filaments of mixed polarity like other α-actinins, SpAin1 has lower bundling activity and is more dynamic than human α-actinin HsACTN4. To determine whether dynamic bundling is important for cytokinesis in fission yeast, we created the less dynamic bundling mutant SpAin1(R216E). We found that dynamic bundling is critical for cytokinesis, as cells expressing SpAin1(R216E) display disorganized ring material and delays in both ring formation and constriction. Furthermore, computer simulations of initial actin filament elongation and alignment revealed that an intermediate level of cross-linking best facilitates filament alignment. Together our results demonstrate that dynamic bundling by SpAin1 is important for proper contractile ring formation and constriction. PMID:27075176

  15. Cost Effectiveness of Imiquimod 5% Cream Compared with Methyl Aminolevulinate-Based Photodynamic Therapy in the Treatment of Non-Hyperkeratotic, Non-Hypertrophic Actinic (Solar) Keratoses: A Decision Tree Model

    Wilson, Edward C F

    2010-01-01

    Background: Actinic keratosis (AK) is caused by chronic exposure to UV radiation (sunlight). First-line treatments are cryosurgery, topical 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) and topical diclofenac. Where these are contraindicated or less appropriate, alternatives are imiquimod and photodynamic therapy (PDT). Objective: To compare the cost effectiveness of imiquimod and methyl aminolevulinate-based PDT (MAL-PDT) from the perspective of the UK NHS. Methods: A decision tree model was populated with data fro...

  16. Mapping of the Mouse Actin Capping Protein Beta Subunit Gene

    Cooper John A

    2000-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Capping protein (CP, a heterodimer of α and β subunits, is found in all eukaryotes. CP binds to the barbed ends of actin filaments in vitro and controls actin assembly and cell motility in vivo. Vertebrates have three isoforms of CPβ produced by alternatively splicing from one gene; lower organisms have one gene and one isoform. Results We isolated genomic clones corresponding to the β subunit of mouse CP and identified its chromosomal location by interspecies backcross mapping. Conclusions The CPβ gene (Cappb1 mapped to Chromosome 4 between Cdc42 and D4Mit312. Three mouse mutations, snubnose, curly tail, and cribriform degeneration, map in the vicinity of the β gene.

  17. Covert connection of filaments

    Filippov, Boris

    2015-01-01

    We analyse the relationship between two near filaments, which do not show any connection in H-alpha images but reveal close magnetic connectivity during filament activations in Extreme Ultraviolet (EUV) observations. A twisted flux rope, which connects a half of one filament with another filament, becomes visible during several activations but seems to exist all the time of the filaments presence on the disc. Solar Dynamic Observatory} (SDO) and Solar Terrestrial Relations Observatory (STEREO) observed the region with the filaments from two points of view separated by the angle of about 120 deg. On 2012 July 27, SDO observed the filament activation on disc, while for the STEREO B position the filaments were visible at the limb. Nearly identical interaction episode was observed on 2012 August 04 by STEREO A on disc and by SDO at the limb. This good opportunity allows us to disentangle the 3-D shape of the connecting flux rope and in particular to determine with high reliability the helicity sign of the flux ro...

  18. Tungsten filament fire

    Ruiz, Michael J.; Perkins, James

    2016-05-01

    We safely remove the outer glass bulb from an incandescent lamp and burn up the tungsten filament after the glass is removed. This demonstration dramatically illustrates the necessity of a vacuum or inert gas for the environment surrounding the tungsten filament inside the bulb. Our approach has added historical importance since the incandescent light bulb is being replaced by compact fluorescent and LED lamps.

  19. Emerging roles of actin cytoskeleton regulating enzymes in drug addiction: Actin or reactin’?

    Rothenfluh, Adrian; Cowan, Christopher W.

    2013-01-01

    Neurons rely on their cytoskeleton to give them shape and stability, and on cytoskeletal dynamics for growth and synaptic plasticity. Because drug addiction is increasingly seen as the inappropriate learning of strongly reinforcing stimuli, the role of the cytoskeleton in shaping drug memories has been of increasing interest in recent years. Does the cytoskeleton have an active role in shaping these memories, and to what extent do alterations in the cytoskeleton reflect the acute actions of drug exposure, or homeostatic reactions to the chronic exposure to drugs of abuse? Here we will review recent advances in understanding the role of the cytoskeleton in the development of drug addiction, with a focus on actin filaments, as they have been studied in greater detail. PMID:23428655

  20. The scaffolding protein IQGAP1 co-localizes with actin at the cytoplasmic face of the nuclear envelope: implications for cytoskeletal regulation

    Johnson, Michael A.; Henderson, Beric R.

    2012-01-01

    IQGAP1 is an important cytoskeletal regulator, known to act at the plasma membrane to bundle and cap actin filaments, and to tether the cortical actin meshwork to microtubules via plus-end binding proteins. Here we describe the novel subcellular localization of IQGAP1 at the cytoplasmic face of the nuclear envelope, where it co-located with F-actin. The IQGAP1 and F-actin staining overlapped that of microtubules at the nuclear envelope, revealing a pattern strikingly similar to that observed ...

  1. Colocalization of synapsin and actin during synaptic vesicle recycling

    Bloom, Ona; Evergren, Emma; Tomilin, Nikolay;

    2003-01-01

    activity, however, synapsin was detected in the pool of vesicles proximal to the active zone. In addition, actin and synapsin were found colocalized in a dynamic filamentous cytomatrix at the sites of synaptic vesicle recycling, endocytic zones. Synapsin immunolabeling was not associated with clathrin......-coated intermediates but was found on vesicles that appeared to be recycling back to the cluster. Disruption of synapsin function by microinjection of antisynapsin antibodies resulted in a prominent reduction of the cytomatrix at endocytic zones of active synapses. Our data suggest that in addition to its known...

  2. LeftyA decreases Actin Polymerization and Stiffness in Human Endometrial Cancer Cells

    Salker, Madhuri S.; Schierbaum, Nicolas; Alowayed, Nour; Singh, Yogesh; Mack, Andreas F.; Stournaras, Christos; Schäffer, Tilman E.; Lang, Florian

    2016-01-01

    LeftyA, a cytokine regulating stemness and embryonic differentiation, down-regulates cell proliferation and migration. Cell proliferation and motility require actin reorganization, which is under control of ras-related C3 botulinum toxin substrate 1 (Rac1) and p21 protein-activated kinase 1 (PAK1). The present study explored whether LeftyA modifies actin cytoskeleton, shape and stiffness of Ishikawa cells, a well differentiated endometrial carcinoma cell line. The effect of LeftyA on globular over filamentous actin ratio was determined utilizing Western blotting and flow cytometry. Rac1 and PAK1 transcript levels were measured by qRT-PCR as well as active Rac1 and PAK1 by immunoblotting. Cell stiffness (quantified by the elastic modulus), cell surface area and cell volume were studied by atomic force microscopy (AFM). As a result, 2 hours treatment with LeftyA (25 ng/ml) significantly decreased Rac1 and PAK1 transcript levels and activity, depolymerized actin, and decreased cell stiffness, surface area and volume. The effect of LeftyA on actin polymerization was mimicked by pharmacological inhibition of Rac1 and PAK1. In the presence of the Rac1 or PAK1 inhibitor LeftyA did not lead to significant further actin depolymerization. In conclusion, LeftyA leads to disruption of Rac1 and Pak1 activity with subsequent actin depolymerization, cell softening and cell shrinkage. PMID:27404958

  3. Surface adsorption and hopping cause probe-size-dependent microrheology of actin networks

    He, Jun; Tang, Jay X.

    2011-04-01

    A network of filaments formed primarily by the abundant cytoskeletal protein actin gives animal cells their shape and elasticity. The rheological properties of reconstituted actin networks have been studied by tracking micron-sized probe beads embedded within the networks. We investigate how microrheology depends on surface properties of probe particles by varying the stickiness of their surface. For this purpose, we chose carboxylate polystyrene (PS) beads, silica beads, bovine serum albumin (BSA) -coated PS beads, and polyethylene glycol (PEG) -grafted PS beads, which show descending stickiness to actin filaments, characterized by confocal imaging and microrheology. Probe size dependence of microrheology is observed for all four types of beads. For the slippery PEG beads, particle-tracking microrheology detects weaker networks using smaller beads, which tend to diffuse through the network by hopping from one confinement “cage” to another. This trend is reversed for the other three types of beads, for which microrheology measures stiffer networks for smaller beads due to physisorption of nearby filaments to the bead surface. We explain the probe size dependence with two simple models. We also evaluate depletion effect near nonadsorption bead surface using quantitative image analysis and discuss the possible impact of depletion on microrheology. Analysis of these effects is necessary in order to accurately define the actin network rheology both in vitro and in vivo.

  4. Actin capping protein and its inhibitor CARMIL: how intrinsically disordered regions function

    The actin capping protein (CP) tightly binds to the barbed end of actin filaments to block further elongation. The β-tentacle in CP is an important region that ensures stable interaction with actin filaments. CARMIL inhibits the interaction of CP with actin filaments via the C-terminal portion containing the CP-binding motif, located in an intrinsically disordered region. We have proposed an allosteric inhibition model in which CARMIL suppresses CP by the population shift mechanism. Here, we solved a crystal structure of CP in complex with a CARMIL-derived peptide, CA32. The new structure clearly represents the α-helical form of the β-tentacle that was invisible in other CP/CARMIL peptide complex structures. In addition, we exhaustively performed a normal mode analysis with the elastic network model on all available crystal structures of the CP/CARMIL peptide complexes, including the new structure. We concluded that the CP-binding motif is necessary and sufficient for altering the fluctuation of CP, which is essential for attenuating the barbed-end-capping activity along the population shift mechanism. The roles and functions of the β-tentacle and the CP-binding motif are discussed in terms of their intrinsically disordered nature

  5. Progresses in studies of nuclear actin

    ZHU Xiaojuan; ZENG Xianlu; SONG Zhaoxia; HAO Shui

    2004-01-01

    Actin is a protein abundant in cells. Recently, it has been proved to be universally existent in the nuclei of many cell types. Actin and actin-binding proteins, as well as actin-related proteins, are necessary for the mediation of the conformation and function of nuclear actin, including the transformation of actin between unpolymerized and polymerized, chroinatin remodeling, regulation of gene expression and RNA processing as well as RNA transportation. In this paper, we summarized the progresses in the research of nu clear actin.

  6. Actin Cytoskeleton Contributes to the Elastic Modulus of Embryonic Tendon During Early Development

    Schiele, Nathan R.; von Flotow, Friedrich; Tochka, Zachary L.; Hockaday, Laura A.; Marturano, Joseph E.; Thibodeau, Jeffrey J.; Kuo, Catherine K.

    2016-01-01

    Tendon injuries are common and heal poorly. Strategies to regenerate or replace injured tendons are challenged by an incomplete understanding of normal tendon development. Our previous study showed that embryonic tendon elastic modulus increases as a function of developmental stage. Inhibition of enzymatic collagen crosslink formation abrogated increases in tendon elastic modulus at late developmental stages, but did not affect increases in elastic modulus of early stage embryonic tendons. Here, we aimed to identify potential contributors to the mechanical properties of these early stage embryonic tendons. We characterized tendon progenitor cells in early stage embryonic tendons, and the influence of actin cytoskeleton disruption on tissue elastic modulus. Cells were closely packed in embryonic tendons, and did not change in density during early development. We observed an organized network of actin filaments that seemed contiguous between adjacent cells. The actin filaments exhibited a crimp pattern with a period and amplitude that matched the crimp of collagen fibers at each developmental stage. Chemical disruption of the actin cytoskeleton decreased tendon tissue elastic modulus, measured by atomic force microscopy. Our results demonstrate that early developmental stage embryonic tendons possess a well organized actin cytoskeleton network that contributes significantly to tendon tissue mechanical properties. PMID:25721681

  7. Reverse actin sliding triggers strong myosin binding that moves tropomyosin

    Bekyarova, T.I.; Reedy, M.C.; Baumann, B.A.J.; Tregear, R.T.; Ward, A.; Krzic, U.; Prince, K.M.; Perz-Edwards, R.J.; Reconditi, M.; Gore, D.; Irving, T.C.; Reedy, M.K. (IIT); (EMBL); (Scripps); (Duke); (Prince); (FSU); (MRC); (U. Florence)

    2008-09-03

    Actin/myosin interactions in vertebrate striated muscles are believed to be regulated by the 'steric blocking' mechanism whereby the binding of calcium to the troponin complex allows tropomyosin (TM) to change position on actin, acting as a molecular switch that blocks or allows myosin heads to interact with actin. Movement of TM during activation is initiated by interaction of Ca{sup 2+} with troponin, then completed by further displacement by strong binding cross-bridges. We report x-ray evidence that TM in insect flight muscle (IFM) moves in a manner consistent with the steric blocking mechanism. We find that both isometric contraction, at high [Ca{sup 2+}], and stretch activation, at lower [Ca{sup 2+}], develop similarly high x-ray intensities on the IFM fourth actin layer line because of TM movement, coinciding with x-ray signals of strong-binding cross-bridge attachment to helically favored 'actin target zones.' Vanadate (Vi), a phosphate analog that inhibits active cross-bridge cycling, abolishes all active force in IFM, allowing high [Ca{sup 2+}] to elicit initial TM movement without cross-bridge attachment or other changes from relaxed structure. However, when stretched in high [Ca{sup 2+}], Vi-'paralyzed' fibers produce force substantially above passive response at pCa {approx} 9, concurrent with full conversion from resting to active x-ray pattern, including x-ray signals of cross-bridge strong-binding and TM movement. This argues that myosin heads can be recruited as strong-binding 'brakes' by backward-sliding, calcium-activated thin filaments, and are as effective in moving TM as actively force-producing cross-bridges. Such recruitment of myosin as brakes may be the major mechanism resisting extension during lengthening contractions.

  8. Actin is required for IFT regulation in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii

    Avasthi, Prachee; Onishi, Masayuki; Karpiak, Joel; YAMAMOTO, Ryosuke; Mackinder, Luke; Jonikas, Martin C.; Sale, Winfield S.; Shoichet, Brian; Pringle, John R.; Marshall, Wallace F.

    2014-01-01

    Assembly of cilia and flagella requires intraflagellar transport (IFT), a highly regulated kinesin-based transport system that moves cargo from the basal body to the tip of flagella [1]. The recruitment of IFT components to basal bodies is a function of flagellar length, with increased recruitment in rapidly growing short flagella [2]. The molecular pathways regulating IFT are largely a mystery. Since actin network disruption leads to changes in ciliary length and number, actin has been propo...

  9. Blistering of viscoelastic filaments

    Sattler, R; Wagner, C

    2007-01-01

    When a dilute polymer solution experiences capillary thinning, it forms an almost uniformly cylindrical thread, which we study experimentally. In the last stages of thinning, when polymers have become fully stretched, the filament becomes prone to instabilities, of which we describe two: A novel "breathing" instability, originating from the edge of the filament, and a sinusoidal instability in the interior, which ultimately gives rise to a "blistering" pattern of beads on the filament. We describe the linear instability with a spatial resolution of 80 nm in the disturbance amplitude. For sufficiently high polymer concentrations, the filament eventually separates out into a "solid" phase of entangled polymers, connected by fluid beads. A solid polymer fiber of about 100 nanometer thickness remains, which is essentially permanent.

  10. Femtosecond Laser Filamentation

    Chin, See Leang

    2010-01-01

    Femtosecond Laser Filamentation gives a comprehensive review of the physics of propagation of intense femtosecond laser pulses in optical media (principally air) and the applications and challenges of this new technique. This book presents the modern understanding of the physics of femtosecond laser pulse propagation, including unusual new effects such as the self-transformation of the pulse into a white light laser pulse, intensity clamping, the physics of multiple filamentation and competition, and how filaments’ ability to melt glass leads to wave guide writing. The potential applications of laser filamentation in atmospheric sensing and the generation of other electromagnetic pulses from the UV to the radio frequency are treated, together with possible future challenges in the excitation of super-excited states of molecules. Exciting new phenomena such as filament induced ultrafast birefringence and the excitation of molecular rotational wave packets and their multiple revivals in air (gases) will also ...

  11. Nuclear F-actin enhances the transcriptional activity of β-catenin by increasing its nuclear localization and binding to chromatin.

    Yamazaki, Shota; Yamamoto, Koji; de Lanerolle, Primal; Harata, Masahiko

    2016-04-01

    Actin plays multiple roles both in the cytoplasm and in the nucleus. Cytoplasmic actin, in addition to its structural role in the cytoskeleton, also contributes to the subcellular localization of transcription factors by interacting with them or their partners. The transcriptional cofactor β-catenin, which acts as an intracellular transducer of canonical Wnt signaling, indirectly associates with the cytoplasmic filamentous actin (F-actin). Recently, it has been observed that F-actin is transiently formed within the nucleus in response to serum stimulation and integrin signaling, and also during gene reprogramming. Despite these earlier observations, information about the function of nuclear F-actin is poorly defined. Here, by facilitating the accumulation of nuclear actin artificially, we demonstrate that polymerizing nuclear actin enhanced the nuclear accumulation and transcriptional function of β-catenin. Our results also show that the nuclear F-actin colocalizes with β-catenin and enhances the binding of β-catenin to the downstream target genes of the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway, including the genes for the cell cycle regulators c-myc and cyclin D, and the OCT4 gene. Nuclear F-actin itself also associated with these genes. Since Wnt/β-catenin signaling has important roles in cell differentiation and pluripotency, our observations suggest that nuclear F-actin formed during these biological processes is involved in regulating Wnt/β-catenin signaling. PMID:26900020

  12. Quadrantids filaments modeling

    Rosaev, Alex

    2012-01-01

    Numeric integration of orbits of particles along mean orbit of Quadrantid meteor stream is done at time span 20000 years. Orbits are subdivided on several classes by their evolution type. A very complex dynamical behavior is detected. About 20% of modeled particles escape stream: this fact point on that stream cannot be long-live and have a source within 5000 years. After that, Quadrantid filaments dynamics are studied. By comparison of different authors data, 7 independent filaments are sele...

  13. Antenna mechanism of length control of actin cables

    Mohapatra, Lishibanya; Kondev, Jane

    2014-01-01

    Actin cables are linear cytoskeletal structures that serve as tracks for myosin-based intracellular transport of vesicles and organelles in both yeast and mammalian cells. In a yeast cell undergoing budding, cables are in constant dynamic turnover yet some cables grow from the bud neck toward the back of the mother cell until their length roughly equals the diameter of the mother cell. This raises the question: how is the length of these cables controlled? Here we describe a novel molecular mechanism for cable length control inspired by recent experimental observations in cells. This antenna mechanism involves three key proteins: formins, which polymerize actin, Smy1 proteins, which bind formins and inhibit actin polymerization, and myosin motors, which deliver Smy1 to formins, leading to a length-dependent actin polymerization rate. We compute the probability distribution of cable lengths as a function of several experimentally tuneable parameters such as the formin-binding affinity of Smy1 and the concentra...

  14. Picosecond laser filamentation in air

    Schmitt-Sody, Andreas; Bergé, L; Skupin, S; Polynkin, Pavel

    2016-01-01

    The propagation of intense picosecond laser pulses in air in the presence of strong nonlinear self-action effects and air ionization is investigated experimentally and numerically. The model used for numerical analysis is based on the nonlinear propagator for the optical field coupled with the rate equations for the production of various ionic species and plasma temperature. Our results show that the phenomenon of plasma-driven intensity clamping, which is paramount in femtosecond laser filamentation, holds for picosecond pulses. Furthermore, the temporal pulse distortions are limited and the pulse fluence is also clamped. The resulting unique feature of the picosecond filamentation regime is the production of a broad, fully ionized air channel, continuous both longitudinally and transversely, which may be instrumental for numerous applications.

  15. Prokaryotic expression and characterization of a pea actin isoform (PEAcl) fused to GFP

    ZHANG Shaobin; REN Dongtao; XU Xiaojing; LIU Guoqin

    2004-01-01

    Actins widely exist in eukaryotic cells and play important roles in many living activities. As there are many kinds of actin isoforms in plant cells, it is difficult to purify each actin isoform in sufficient quantities for analyzing its physicochemical properties. In the present study, a pea(Pisum Sativum L.) actin isoform (PEAc1) fused to His-tag at its amino terminus and GFP (green fluorescent protein) at its Carboxyl terminus were expressed in E. Coli in inclusion bodies. The fusion protein (PEAc1-GFP) was highly purified with the yield of above 2 mg/L culture by dissolving inclusions in 8 mol/L urea, renaturing by dialysis in a gradient of urea, and affinity binding to Ni-resin. The purified mono meric PEAc1-GFP could efficiently bind on Dnase Ⅰ and inhibit the latter's enzyme activity. PEAc1-GFP could polymerize into green fluorescent filamentous structures (F-PEAc1-GFP), which could be labeled by TRITC-phalloidin, a specific agent for observing microfilaments. The PEAc1-GFP polymerization curve was identical with that of chicken skeletal muscle actin. The critical concentration for PEAc1-GFP to polymerize into filaments is 0.24 μmol/L. The F-PEAc1-GFP could stimulate myosin Mg-ATPase activity in a protein concentration dependant manner (about 4 folds at1 mg/mL F-PEAc1-GFP). The results above show that the PEAcl fused to GFP retained the assembly characteristic of actin, indicating that gene fusion, prokaryotic expression,denaturation and renaturation, and affinity chromatography is a useful strategy for obtaining plant actin isoform proteins in a large amount.

  16. Statistical Analysis of Filament Features Based on the H{\\alpha} Solar Images from 1988 to 2013 by Computer Automated Detection Method

    Hao, Q; Cao, W; Chen, P F

    2015-01-01

    We improve our filament automated detection method which was proposed in our previous works. It is then applied to process the full disk H$\\alpha$ data mainly obtained by Big Bear Solar Observatory (BBSO) from 1988 to 2013, spanning nearly 3 solar cycles. The butterfly diagrams of the filaments, showing the information of the filament area, spine length, tilt angle, and the barb number, are obtained. The variations of these features with the calendar year and the latitude band are analyzed. The drift velocities of the filaments in different latitude bands are calculated and studied. We also investigate the north-south (N-S) asymmetries of the filament numbers in total and in each subclass classified according to the filament area, spine length, and tilt angle. The latitudinal distribution of the filament number is found to be bimodal. About 80% of all the filaments have tilt angles within [0{\\deg}, 60{\\deg}]. For the filaments within latitudes lower (higher) than 50{\\deg} the northeast (northwest) direction i...

  17. A Bipolar Spindle of Antiparallel ParM Filaments Drives Bacterial Plasmid Segregation

    Gayathri, P; Fujii, T; Møller-Jensen, Jakob;

    2012-01-01

    To ensure their stable inheritance by daughter cells during cell division, bacterial low copy-number plasmids make simple DNA segregating machines that use an elongating protein filament between sister plasmids. In the ParMRC system of Escherichia coli R1 plasmid, ParM, an actin-like protein, forms...... the spindle between ParRC complexes on sister plasmids. Using a combination of structural work and total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy, we show that ParRC bound and could accelerate growth at only one end of polar ParM filaments, mechanistically resembling eukaryotic formins. The architecture...... of ParM filaments enabled two ParRC-bound filaments to associate in an antiparallel orientation, forming a bipolar spindle. The spindle elongated as a bundle of at least two antiparallel filaments, thereby pushing two plasmid clusters toward the poles....

  18. Estimates of the field-aligned current density in current-carrying filaments using auroral zone ground-based observations

    M. A. Danielides

    Full Text Available We described the ground signatures of dynamic substorm features as observed by the imaging riometer, magnetometers and all-sky camera (ASC at Kilpisjärvi, Finland on 5 and 25 October 1999 during the late evening hours. The magnetometer data was consistent with the motion of up-ward field-aligned currents (FACs associated with absorption patches moving within the field of view of the riometer. We used riometer data in order to estimate the intensity of FACs associated with these local current-carrying filaments. It is shown that during these events, the estimated FAC intensity exceeds a threshold value that corresponds to the excitation of the low-frequency turbulence in the upper ionosphere. As a result, a quasi-oscillating regime of anomalous resistivity on the auroral field lines can give rise to the burst-like electron acceleration responsible for simultaneously observed auroral forms and bursts of Pi1B pulsations.

    Key words. Ionosphere (active experiments; auroral ionosphere; electric fields and currents

  19. The structural dynamics of α-tropomyosin on F-actin shape the overlap complex between adjacent tropomyosin molecules.

    Lehman, William; Li, Xiaochuan Edward; Orzechowski, Marek; Fischer, Stefan

    2014-06-15

    Coiled-coil tropomyosin, localized on actin filaments in virtually all eukaryotic cells, serves as a gatekeeper regulating access of the motor protein myosin and other actin-binding proteins onto the thin filament surface. Tropomyosin's modular pseudo-repeating pattern of approximately 39 amino acid residues is designed to allow binding of the coiled-coil to successive actin subunits along thin filaments. Even though different tropomyosin isoforms contain varying numbers of repeat modules, the pseudo-repeat length, in all cases, matches that of a single actin subunit. Thus, the seven pseudo-repeats of 42nm long muscle tropomyosin bind to seven successive actin subunits along thin filaments, while simultaneously bending into a super-helical conformation that is preshaped to the actin filament helix. In order to form a continuous cable on thin filaments that is free of gaps, adjacent tropomyosin molecules polymerize head-to-tail by means of a short (∼9 residue) overlap. Several laboratories have engineered peptides to mimic the N- and C-terminal tropomyosin association and to characterize the overlap structure. All overlapping domains examined show a compact N-terminal coiled-coil inserting into a partially opened C-terminal partner, where the opposing coiled-coils at the overlap junction face each other at up to ∼90° twist angles. Here, Molecular Dynamics (MD) simulations were carried out to determine constraints on the formation of the tropomyosin overlap complex and to assess the amount of twisting exhibited by full-length tropomyosin when bound to actin. With the exception of the last 20-40 C- and N-terminal residues, we find that the average tropomyosin structure closely resembles a "canonical" model proposed in the classic work of McLachlan and Stewart, displaying perfectly symmetrical supercoil geometry matching the F-actin helix with an integral number of coiled-coil turns, a coiled-coil helical pitch of 137Å, a superhelical pitch of 770Å, and no

  20. Dynamic Actin Controls Polarity Induction de novo in Protoplasts

    Beatrix Zaban; Jan Maisch; Peter Nick

    2013-01-01

    Cell polarity and axes are central for plant morphogenesis.To study how polarity and axes are induced de novo,we investigated protoplasts of tobacco Nicotiana tabacum cv.BY-2 expressing fluorescentlytagged cytoskeletal markers.We standardized the system to such a degree that we were able to generate quantitative data on the temporal patterns of regeneration stages.The synthesis of a new cell wall marks the transition to the first stage of regeneration,and proceeds after a long preparatory phase within a few minutes.During this preparatory phase,the nucleus migrates actively,and cytoplasmic strands remodel vigorously.We probed this system for the effect of anti-cytoskeletal compounds,inducible bundling of actin,RGD-peptides,and temperature.Suppression of actin dynamics at an early stage leads to aberrant tripolar cells,whereas suppression of microtubule dynamics produces aberrant sausagelike cells with asymmetric cell walls.We integrated these data into a model,where the microtubular cytoskeleton conveys positional information between the nucleus and the membrane controlling the release or activation of components required for cell wall synthesis.Cell wall formation is followed by the induction of a new cell pole requiring dynamic actin filaments,and the new cell axis is manifested as elongation growth perpendicular to the orientation of the aligned cortical microtubules.

  1. Actin disassembly 'clock' and membrane tension determine cell shape and turning: a mathematical model

    Motile cells regulate their shape and movements largely by remodeling the actin cytoskeleton. Principles of this regulation are becoming clear for simple-shaped steadily crawling cells, such as fish keratocytes. In particular, the shape of the leading edge and sides of the lamellipodium-cell motile appendage-is determined by graded actin distribution at the cell boundary, so that the denser actin network at the front grows, while sparser actin filaments at the sides are stalled by membrane tension. Shaping of the cell rear is less understood. Here we theoretically examine the hypothesis that the cell rear is shaped by the disassembly clock: the front-to-rear lamellipodial width is defined by the time needed for the actin-adhesion network to disassemble to the point at which the membrane tension can crush this network. We demonstrate that the theory predicts the observed cell shapes. Furthermore, turning of the cells can be explained by biases in the actin distribution. We discuss experimental implications of this hypothesis.

  2. Position detection and observation of a conducting filament hidden under a top electrode in a Ta2O5-based atomic switch

    Resistive random access memories (ReRAMs) are promising next-generation memory devices. Observation of the conductive filaments formed in ReRAMs is essential in understanding their operating mechanisms and their expected ultimate performance. Finding the position of the conductive filament is the key process in the preparation of samples for cross-sectional transmission electron microscopy (TEM) imaging. Here, we propose a method for locating the position of conductive filaments hidden under top electrodes. Atomic force microscopy imaging with a conductive tip detects the current flowing through a conductive filament from the bottom electrode, which reaches its maximum at a position that is above the conductive filament. This is achieved by properly biasing a top electrode, a bottom electrode and the conductive tip. This technique was applied to Cu/Ta2O5/Pt atomic switches, revealing the formation of a single Cu filament in a device, although the device had a large area of 5 × 5 μm2. Change in filament size was clearly observed depending on the compliance current used in the set process. It was also found from the TEM observation that the cross-sectional shape of the formed filament varies considerably, which is attributable to different Cu nuclei growth mechanisms. (paper)

  3. A magnetically actuated cellular strain assessment tool for quantitative analysis of strain induced cellular reorientation and actin alignment

    Khademolhosseini, F.; Liu, C.-C.; Lim, C. J.; Chiao, M.

    2016-08-01

    Commercially available cell strain tools, such as pneumatically actuated elastomer substrates, require special culture plates, pumps, and incubator setups. In this work, we present a magnetically actuated cellular strain assessment tool (MACSAT) that can be implemented using off-the-shelf components and conventional incubators. We determine the strain field on the MACSAT elastomer substrate using numerical models and experimental measurements and show that a specific region of the elastomer substrate undergoes a quasi-uniaxial 2D stretch, and that cells confined to this region of the MACSAT elastomer substrate undergo tensile, compressive, or zero axial strain depending on their angle of orientation. Using the MACSAT to apply cyclic strain on endothelial cells, we demonstrate that actin filaments within the cells reorient away from the stretching direction, towards the directions of minimum axial strain. We show that the final actin orientation angles in strained cells are spread over a region of compressive axial strain, confirming previous findings on the existence of a varied pre-tension in the actin filaments of the cytoskeleton. We also demonstrate that strained cells exhibit distinctly different values of actin alignment coherency compared to unstrained cells and therefore propose that this parameter, i.e., the coherency of actin alignment, can be used as a new readout to determine the occurrence/extent of actin alignment in cell strain experiments. The tools and methods demonstrated in this study are simple and accessible and can be easily replicated by other researchers to study the strain response of other adherent cells.

  4. Live imaging provides new insights on dynamic F-actin filopodia and differential endocytosis during myoblast fusion in Drosophila.

    Shruti Haralalka

    Full Text Available The process of myogenesis includes the recognition, adhesion, and fusion of committed myoblasts into multinucleate syncytia. In the larval body wall muscles of Drosophila, this elaborate process is initiated by Founder Cells and Fusion-Competent Myoblasts (FCMs, and cell adhesion molecules Kin-of-IrreC (Kirre and Sticks-and-stones (Sns on their respective surfaces. The FCMs appear to provide the driving force for fusion, via the assembly of protrusions associated with branched F-actin and the WASp, SCAR and Arp2/3 pathways. In the present study, we utilize the dorsal pharyngeal musculature that forms in the Drosophila embryo as a model to explore myoblast fusion and visualize the fusion process in live embryos. These muscles rely on the same cell types and genes as the body wall muscles, but are amenable to live imaging since they do not undergo extensive morphogenetic movement during formation. Time-lapse imaging with F-actin and membrane markers revealed dynamic FCM-associated actin-enriched protrusions that rapidly extend and retract into the myotube from different sites within the actin focus. Ultrastructural analysis of this actin-enriched area showed that they have two morphologically distinct structures: wider invasions and/or narrow filopodia that contain long linear filaments. Consistent with this, formin Diaphanous (Dia and branched actin nucleator, Arp3, are found decorating the filopodia or enriched at the actin focus, respectively, indicating that linear actin is present along with branched actin at sites of fusion in the FCM. Gain-of-function Dia and loss-of-function Arp3 both lead to fusion defects, a decrease of F-actin foci and prominent filopodia from the FCMs. We also observed differential endocytosis of cell surface components at sites of fusion, with actin reorganizing factors, WASp and SCAR, and Kirre remaining on the myotube surface and Sns preferentially taken up with other membrane proteins into early endosomes and

  5. Detection of adenosine triphosphate through polymerization-induced aggregation of actin-conjugated gold/silver nanorods

    Liao, Yu-Ju; Shiang, Yen-Chun; Chen, Li-Yi; Hsu, Chia-Lun; Huang, Chih-Ching; Chang, Huan-Tsung

    2013-11-01

    We have developed a simple and selective nanosensor for the optical detection of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) using globular actin-conjugated gold/silver nanorods (G-actin-Au/Ag NRs). By simply mixing G-actin and Au/Ag NRs (length ˜56 nm and diameter ˜12 nm), G-actin-Au/Ag NRs were prepared which were stable in physiological solutions (25 mM Tris-HCl, 150 mM NaCl, 5.0 mM KCl, 3.0 mM MgCl2 and 1.0 mM CaCl2; pH 7.4). Introduction of ATP into the G-actin-Au/Ag NR solutions in the presence of excess G-actin induced the formation of filamentous actin-conjugated Au/Ag NR aggregates through ATP-induced polymerization of G-actin. When compared to G-actin-modified spherical Au nanoparticles having a size of 13 nm or 56 nm, G-actin-Au/Ag NRs provided better sensitivity for ATP, mainly because the longitudinal surface plasmon absorbance of the Au/Ag NR has a more sensitive response to aggregation. This G-actin-Au/Ag NR probe provided high sensitivity (limit of detection 25 nM) for ATP with remarkable selectivity (>10-fold) over other adenine nucleotides (adenosine, adenosine monophosphate and adenosine diphosphate) and nucleoside triphosphates (guanosine triphosphate, cytidine triphosphate and uridine triphosphate). It also allowed the determination of ATP concentrations in plasma samples without conducting tedious sample pretreatments; the only necessary step was simple dilution. Our experimental results are in good agreement with those obtained from a commercial luciferin-luciferase bioluminescence assay. Our simple, sensitive and selective approach appears to have a practical potential for the clinical diagnosis of diseases (e.g. cystic fibrosis) associated with changes in ATP concentrations.

  6. Nonparametric Filament Estimation

    Genovese, Christopher R; verdinelli, Isabella; Wasserman, Larry

    2010-01-01

    We develop nonparametric methods for estimating filamentary structure from planar point process data and find the minimax lower bound for this problem. We show that, under weak conditions, the filaments have a simple geometric representation as the medial axis of the data distribution's support. Our methods convert an estimator of the support's boundary into an estimator of the filaments. We find the rates of convergence of our estimators and show that when using an optimal boundary estimator, they achieve the minimax rate. Our work can be regarded as providing a solution to the manifold learning problem as well as being a new approach to principal curve estimation.

  7. Aerogel-supported filament

    Wuest, Craig R.; Tillotson, Thomas M.; Johnson, III, Coleman V.

    1995-01-01

    The present invention is a thin filament embedded in a low density aerogel for use in radiation detection instruments and incandescent lamps. The aerogel provides a supportive matrix that is thermally and electrically nonconductive, mechanically strong, highly porous, gas-permeable, and transparent to ionizing radiation over short distances. A low density, open-cell aerogel is cast around a fine filament or wire, which allows the wire to be positioned with little or no tension and keeps the wire in place in the event of breakage. The aerogel support reduces the stresses on the wire caused by vibrational, gravitational, electrical, and mechanical forces.

  8. Actin flow and talin dynamics govern rigidity sensing in actin–integrin linkage through talin extension

    Hirata, Hiroaki; Chiam, Keng-Hwee; Lim, Chwee Teck; Sokabe, Masahiro

    2014-01-01

    At cell–substrate adhesion sites, the linkage between actin filaments and integrin is regulated by mechanical stiffness of the substrate. Of potential molecular regulators, the linker proteins talin and vinculin are of particular interest because mechanical extension of talin induces vinculin binding with talin, which reinforces the actin–integrin linkage. For understanding the molecular and biophysical mechanism of rigidity sensing at cell–substrate adhesion sites, we constructed a simple ph...

  9. Lens tilting effect on filamentation and filament-induced fluorescence

    Kamali, Y.; Sun, Q.; Daigle, J.-F.; Azarm, A.; Bernhardt, J.; Chin, S. L.

    2009-03-01

    In filament-induced fluorescence spectroscopy, we experimentally found that if the lens used for the creation and localization of filament is tilted, the signal to noise ratio of spectral measurement increases. Further study shows that with lens tilting, astigmatism occurs and the filament is split into shorter parts. In turn the shortening of filament reduces the generation of white light which is the major 'noise' source of the spectra.

  10. The Intensity Of The 2.7nm Reflection As A Constraint For Models Of Myosin Docking To Actin

    Previous workers have proposed high resolution models for the docking of the myosin heads on actin on the basis of combined crystallographic and electron microscopy data (Mendelson and Morris, 1997 PNAS 94:8533; Holmes et al. 2003 Nature 425:423). We have used data from small angle X-ray fiber diffraction from living muscle to check the predictions of these models. Whole sartorius muscles from Rana pipiens were mounted in a chamber containing Ringer's solution at 10 C and at rest length at the BioCAT beamline (18 ID, Advanced Photon Source, Argonne, IL-U.S.A.). The muscles were activated by electrical stimulation and the force was recorded with a muscle lever system type 300B (Aurora Scientific). X-ray patterns were collected with 1s total exposures at rest and during isometric contraction out to 0.5 nm-1 in reciprocal space, as the higher angle reflections are expected to be more sensitive to the arrangement of myosin heads on actin. We observed that during isometric contraction the meridional reflection originating from the 2.73nm repeat of the actin monomers along the actin filament increases its intensity by a factor 2.1 ± 0.2 relative to rest. Among the models tested, Holmes et al. fits the data when the actin filament is decorated with 30-40% the total available myosin heads, a fraction similar to that estimated with fast single fiber mechanics by Piazzesi et al. (2007, Cell 131:784). However, when the mismatch between the periodicities of actin and myosin filaments is taken into account, none of the models can reproduce the fiber diffraction data. We suggest that the fiber diffraction data should be used as a further constraint on new high resolution models for the docking of the myosin heads on actin.

  11. The Intensity Of The 2.7nm Reflection As A Constraint For Models Of Myosin Docking To Actin

    Reconditi, Massimo; Irving, Tom C.; (IIT); (U.Florence)

    2009-03-16

    Previous workers have proposed high resolution models for the docking of the myosin heads on actin on the basis of combined crystallographic and electron microscopy data (Mendelson and Morris, 1997 PNAS 94:8533; Holmes et al. 2003 Nature 425:423). We have used data from small angle X-ray fiber diffraction from living muscle to check the predictions of these models. Whole sartorius muscles from Rana pipiens were mounted in a chamber containing Ringer's solution at 10 C and at rest length at the BioCAT beamline (18 ID, Advanced Photon Source, Argonne, IL-U.S.A.). The muscles were activated by electrical stimulation and the force was recorded with a muscle lever system type 300B (Aurora Scientific). X-ray patterns were collected with 1s total exposures at rest and during isometric contraction out to 0.5 nm{sup -1} in reciprocal space, as the higher angle reflections are expected to be more sensitive to the arrangement of myosin heads on actin. We observed that during isometric contraction the meridional reflection originating from the 2.73nm repeat of the actin monomers along the actin filament increases its intensity by a factor 2.1 {+-} 0.2 relative to rest. Among the models tested, Holmes et al. fits the data when the actin filament is decorated with 30-40% the total available myosin heads, a fraction similar to that estimated with fast single fiber mechanics by Piazzesi et al. (2007, Cell 131:784). However, when the mismatch between the periodicities of actin and myosin filaments is taken into account, none of the models can reproduce the fiber diffraction data. We suggest that the fiber diffraction data should be used as a further constraint on new high resolution models for the docking of the myosin heads on actin.

  12. Progressive hearing loss and gradual deterioration of sensory hair bundles in the ears of mice lacking the actin-binding protein Eps8L2

    Furness, David N.; Johnson, Stuart L.; Manor, Uri; Rüttiger, Lukas; Tocchetti, Arianna; Offenhauser, Nina; Olt, Jennifer; Goodyear, Richard J.; Vijayakumar, Sarath; Dai, Yuhai; Hackney, Carole M.; Franz, Christoph; Di Fiore, Pier Paolo; Masetto, Sergio; Jones, Sherri M.

    2013-01-01

    Mechanotransduction in the mammalian auditory system depends on mechanosensitive channels in the hair bundles that project from the apical surface of the sensory hair cells. Individual stereocilia within each bundle contain a core of tightly packed actin filaments, whose length is dynamically regulated during development and in the adult. We show that the actin-binding protein epidermal growth factor receptor pathway substrate 8 (Eps8)L2, a member of the Eps8-like protein family, is a newly i...

  13. Live cell tracking of symmetry break in actin cytoskeleton triggered by abrupt changes in micromechanical environments.

    Inoue, S; Frank, V; Hörning, M; Kaufmann, S; Yoshikawa, H Y; Madsen, J P; Lewis, A L; Armes, S P; Tanaka, M

    2015-12-01

    With the aid of stimulus-responsive hydrogel substrates composed of ABA triblock copolymer micelles, we monitored the morphological dynamics of myoblast (C2C12) cells in response to an abrupt change in the substrate elasticity by live cell imaging. The remodeling of actin cytoskeletons could be monitored by means of transient transfection with LifeAct-GFP. Dynamic changes in the orientational order of actin filaments were characterized by an order parameter, which enables one to generalize the mechanically induced actin cytoskeletons as a break of symmetry. The critical role that acto-myosin complexes play in the morphological transition was verified by the treatment of cells with myosin II inhibitor (blebbistatin) and the fluorescence localization of focal adhesion contacts. Such dynamically tunable hydrogels can be utilized as in vitro cellular micro-environments that can exert time-dependent stimuli to mechanically regulate target cells. PMID:26347909

  14. ADP-stimulated contraction: A predictor of thin-filament activation in cardiac disease.

    Sequeira, Vasco; Najafi, Aref; Wijnker, Paul J M; Dos Remedios, Cristobal G; Michels, Michelle; Kuster, Diederik W D; van der Velden, Jolanda

    2015-12-15

    Diastolic dysfunction is general to all idiopathic dilated (IDCM) and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) patients. Relaxation deficits may result from increased actin-myosin formation during diastole due to altered tropomyosin position, which blocks myosin binding to actin in the absence of Ca(2+). We investigated whether ADP-stimulated force development (without Ca(2+)) can be used to reveal changes in actin-myosin blockade in human cardiomyopathy cardiomyocytes. Cardiac samples from HCM patients, harboring thick-filament (MYH7mut, MYBPC3mut) and thin-filament (TNNT2mut, TNNI3mut) mutations, and IDCM were compared with sarcomere mutation-negative HCM (HCMsmn) and nonfailing donors. Myofilament ADP sensitivity was higher in IDCM and HCM compared with donors, whereas it was lower for MYBPC3. Increased ADP sensitivity in IDCM, HCMsmn, and MYH7mut was caused by low phosphorylation of myofilament proteins, as it was normalized to donors by protein kinase A (PKA) treatment. Troponin exchange experiments in a TNNT2mut sample corrected the abnormal actin-myosin blockade. In MYBPC3trunc samples, ADP sensitivity highly correlated with cardiac myosin-binding protein-C (cMyBP-C) protein level. Incubation of cardiomyocytes with cMyBP-C antibody against the actin-binding N-terminal region reduced ADP sensitivity, indicative of cMyBP-C's role in actin-myosin regulation. In the presence of Ca(2+), ADP increased myofilament force development and sarcomere stiffness. Enhanced sarcomere stiffness in sarcomere mutation-positive HCM samples was irrespective of the phosphorylation background. In conclusion, ADP-stimulated contraction can be used as a tool to study how protein phosphorylation and mutant proteins alter accessibility of myosin binding on actin. In the presence of Ca(2+), pathologic [ADP] and low PKA-phosphorylation, high actin-myosin formation could contribute to the impaired myocardial relaxation observed in cardiomyopathies. PMID:26621701

  15. Positrusion Filament Recycling System Project

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — TUI proposes a novel process to produce 3d printer feedstock filament out of scrap ABS on the ISS. Currently the plastic filament materials that most 3d printers...

  16. Solar Features - Prominences and Filaments

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Prominences and filaments are two manifestations of the same phenomenon. Both prominences and filaments are features formed above the chromosphere by cool dense...

  17. Soluble expression and characterization of a GFP-fused pea actin isoform(PEAc1)

    Ai Xiao LIU; Shao Bin ZHANG; Xiao Jing XU; Dong Tao REN; Guo Qin LIU

    2004-01-01

    A pea actin isoform PEAc1 with green fluorescent protein (GFP) fusion to its C-terminus and His-tag to its Nterminus, was expressed in prokaryotic cells in soluble form, and highly purified with Ni-Chelating SepharoseTM Fast Flow column. The purified fusion protein (PEAc1-GFP) efficiently inhibited DNase I activities before polymerization,and activated the myosin Mg-ATPase activities after polymerization. The PEAc 1-GFP also polymerized into green fluorescent filamentous structures with a critical concentration of 0.75 μM. These filamentous structures were labeled by TRITC-phalloidin, a specific agent for staining actin microfilaments, and identified as having 9 nm diameters by negative staining. These results indicated that PEAc1 preserved the essential characteristics of actin even with His-tag and GFP fusion, suggesting a promising potential to use GFP fusion protein in obtainning soluble plant actin isoform to analyze its physical and biochemical properties in vitro. The PEAc 1-GFP was also expressed in tobacco BY2 cells,which offers a new pathway for further studying its distribution and function in vivo.

  18. Steady-state nuclear actin levels are determined by export competent actin pool.

    Skarp, Kari-Pekka; Huet, Guillaume; Vartiainen, Maria K

    2013-10-01

    A number of studies in the last decade have irrevocably promoted actin into a fully fledged member of the nuclear compartment, where it, among other crucial tasks, facilitates transcription and chromatin remodeling. Changes in nuclear actin levels have been linked to different cellular processes: decreased nuclear actin to quiescence and increased nuclear actin to differentiation. Importin 9 and exportin 6 transport factors are responsible for the continuous nucleocytoplasmic shuttling of actin, but the mechanisms, which result in modulated actin levels, have not been characterized. We find that in cells growing under normal growth conditions, the levels of nuclear actin vary considerably from cell to cell. To understand the basis for this, we have extensively quantified several cellular parameters while at the same time recording the import and export rates of green fluorescent protein (GFP)-tagged actin. Surprisingly, our dataset shows that the ratio of nuclear to cytoplasmic fluorescence intensity, but not nuclear shape, size, cytoplasm size, or their ratio, correlates negatively with both import and export rate of actin. This suggests that high-nuclear actin content is maintained by both diminished import and export. The high nuclear actin containing cells still show high mobility of actin, but it is not export competent, suggesting increased binding of actin to nuclear complexes. Creation of such export incompetent actin pool would ensure enough actin is retained in the nucleus and make it available for the various nuclear functions described for actin. PMID:23749625

  19. Cryopreservation of Filamentous Fungi

    Homolka, Ladislav

    New York: Nova Science Publishers, Inc, 2013 - (Colvert, A.; Coty, H.), s. 1-66 ISBN 978-1-62618-474-9 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP504/12/0709 Institutional support: RVO:61388971 Keywords : cryopreservation * filamentous fungi Subject RIV: EE - Microbiology, Virology

  20. Chorein Sensitivity of Actin Polymerization, Cell Shape and Mechanical Stiffness of Vascular Endothelial Cells

    Ioana Alesutan

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Background/Aims: Endothelial cell stiffness plays a key role in endothelium-dependent control of vascular tone and arterial blood pressure. Actin polymerization and distribution of microfilaments is essential for mechanical cell stiffness. Chorein, a protein encoded by the VPS13A gene, defective in chorea-acanthocytosis (ChAc, is involved in neuronal cell survival as well as cortical actin polymerization of erythrocytes and blood platelets. Chorein is expressed in a wide variety of further cells, yet nothing is known about the impact of chorein on cells other than neurons, erythrocytes and platelets. The present study explored whether chorein is expressed in human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs and addressed the putative role of chorein in the regulation of cytoskeletal architecture, stiffness and survival of those cells. Methods: In HUVECs with or without silencing of the VPS13A gene, VPS13A mRNA expression was determined utilizing quantitative RT-PCR, cytoskeletal organization visualized by confocal microscopy, G/F actin ratio and phosphorylation status of focal adhesion kinase quantified by western blotting, cell death determined by flow cytometry, mechanical properties studied by atomic force microscopy (AFM and cell morphology analysed by scanning ion conductance microscopy (SICM. Results: VPS13A mRNA expression was detectable in HUVECs. Silencing of the VPS13A gene attenuated the filamentous actin network, decreased the ratio of soluble G-actin over filamentous F-actin, reduced cell stiffness and changed cell morphology as compared to HUVECs silenced with negative control siRNA. These effects were paralleled by a significant decrease in FAK phosphorylation following VPS13A silencing. Moreover, silencing of the VPS13A gene increased caspase 3 activity and induced necrosis in HUVECs. Conclusions: Chorein is a novel regulator of cytoskeletal architecture, cell shape, mechanical stiffness and survival of vascular endothelial cells.

  1. Arabidopsis Actin-Depolymerizing Factor-4 links pathogen perception, defense activation and transcription to cytoskeletal dynamics.

    Katie Porter

    Full Text Available The primary role of Actin-Depolymerizing Factors (ADFs is to sever filamentous actin, generating pointed ends, which in turn are incorporated into newly formed filaments, thus supporting stochastic actin dynamics. Arabidopsis ADF4 was recently shown to be required for the activation of resistance in Arabidopsis following infection with the phytopathogenic bacterium Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato DC3000 (Pst expressing the effector protein AvrPphB. Herein, we demonstrate that the expression of RPS5, the cognate resistance protein of AvrPphB, was dramatically reduced in the adf4 mutant, suggesting a link between actin cytoskeletal dynamics and the transcriptional regulation of R-protein activation. By examining the PTI (PAMP Triggered Immunity response in the adf4 mutant when challenged with Pst expressing AvrPphB, we observed a significant reduction in the expression of the PTI-specific target gene FRK1 (Flg22-Induced Receptor Kinase 1. These data are in agreement with recent observations demonstrating a requirement for RPS5 in PTI-signaling in the presence of AvrPphB. Furthermore, MAPK (Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinase-signaling was significantly reduced in the adf4 mutant, while no such reduction was observed in the rps5-1 point mutation under similar conditions. Isoelectric focusing confirmed phosphorylation of ADF4 at serine-6, and additional in planta analyses of ADF4's role in immune signaling demonstrates that nuclear localization is phosphorylation independent, while localization to the actin cytoskeleton is linked to ADF4 phosphorylation. Taken together, these data suggest a novel role for ADF4 in controlling gene-for-gene resistance activation, as well as MAPK-signaling, via the coordinated regulation of actin cytoskeletal dynamics and R-gene transcription.

  2. Soluble axoplasm enriched from injured CNS axons reveals the early modulation of the actin cytoskeleton.

    Patrick Garland

    Full Text Available Axon injury and degeneration is a common consequence of diverse neurological conditions including multiple sclerosis, traumatic brain injury and spinal cord injury. The molecular events underlying axon degeneration are poorly understood. We have developed a novel method to enrich for axoplasm from rodent optic nerve and characterised the early events in Wallerian degeneration using an unbiased proteomics screen. Our detergent-free method draws axoplasm into a dehydrated hydrogel of the polymer poly(2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate, which is then recovered using centrifugation. This technique is able to recover axonal proteins and significantly deplete glial contamination as confirmed by immunoblotting. We have used iTRAQ to compare axoplasm-enriched samples from naïve vs injured optic nerves, which has revealed a pronounced modulation of proteins associated with the actin cytoskeleton. To confirm the modulation of the actin cytoskeleton in injured axons we focused on the RhoA pathway. Western blotting revealed an augmentation of RhoA and phosphorylated cofilin in axoplasm-enriched samples from injured optic nerve. To investigate the localisation of these components of the RhoA pathway in injured axons we transected axons of primary hippocampal neurons in vitro. We observed an early modulation of filamentous actin with a concomitant redistribution of phosphorylated cofilin in injured axons. At later time-points, RhoA is found to accumulate in axonal swellings and also colocalises with filamentous actin. The actin cytoskeleton is a known sensor of cell viability across multiple eukaryotes, and our results suggest a similar role for the actin cytoskeleton following axon injury. In agreement with other reports, our data also highlights the role of the RhoA pathway in axon degeneration. These findings highlight a previously unexplored area of axon biology, which may open novel avenues to prevent axon degeneration. Our method for isolating CNS axoplasm

  3. Detection of Stacked Filament Lensing Between SDSS Luminous Red Galaxies

    Clampitt, Joseph; Takada, Masahiro

    2014-01-01

    We search for the lensing signal of massive filaments between 220,000 pairs of Luminous Red Galaxies (LRGs) from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. We use a nulling technique to remove the contribution of the LRG halos, resulting in a $10 \\sigma$ detection of the filament lensing signal. We compare the measurements with halo model predictions based on a calculation of 3-point halo-halo-mass correlations. Comparing the "thick" halo model filament to a "thin" string of halos, thick filaments larger than a Mpc in width are clearly preferred by the data.

  4. The effect of Cytochalasin D on F-Actin behavior of single-cell electroendocytosis using multi-chamber micro cell chip

    Lin, Ran

    2012-03-01

    Electroendocytosis (EED) is a pulsed-electric-field (PEF) induced endocytosis, facilitating cells uptake molecules through nanometer-sized EED vesicles. We herein investigate the effect of a chemical inhibitor, Cytochalasin D (CD) on the actin-filaments (F-Actin) behavior of single-cell EED. The CD concentration (C CD) can control the depolymerization of F-actin. A multi-chamber micro cell chip was fabricated to study the EED under different conditions. Large-scale single-cell data demonstrated EED highly depends on both electric field and C CD. © 2012 IEEE.

  5. Broken detailed balance in active fluctuations of semiflexible filaments

    Gladrow, Jannes; Fakhri, Nikta; Mackintosh, Fred C.; Schmidt, Christoph F.; Broedersz, Chase P.

    2015-03-01

    Non-equilibrium microscopic force generation in cells often results in stochastic steady-state fluctuations. In the cell cytoskeleton, for example, cytoplasmic myosins can drive vigorous conformational fluctuations of actin filaments and microtubules. We here present an analytical and numerical analysis of randomly driven shape fluctuations of semiflexible filaments in a viscoelastic environment. To detect and quantify non-equilibrium dynamics, we focus on the breaking of detailed balance in a conformational phase space subtended by eigenmodes of the beam equation. Molecular dynamics simulations reveal a non-zero circulatory flux in phase space induced by motor activity. Furthermore, we derived an analytical expression of nonequilibrium mode correlations that allows us to predict temporal effects of active molecular motors.

  6. Activation of the cAMP Pathway Induces RACK1-Dependent Binding of β-Actin to BDNF Promoter

    Neasta, Jeremie; Fiorenza, Anna; He, Dao-Yao; Phamluong, Khanhky; Kiely, Patrick A.; Ron, Dorit

    2016-01-01

    RACK1 is a scaffolding protein that contributes to the specificity and propagation of several signaling cascades including the cAMP pathway. As such, RACK1 participates in numerous cellular functions ranging from cell migration and morphology to gene transcription. To obtain further insights on the mechanisms whereby RACK1 regulates cAMP-dependent processes, we set out to identify new binding partners of RACK1 during activation of the cAMP signaling using a proteomics strategy. We identified β-actin as a direct RACK1 binding partner and found that the association between β-actin and RACK1 is increased in response to the activation of the cAMP pathway. Furthermore, we show that cAMP-dependent increase in BDNF expression requires filamentous actin. We further report that β-actin associates with the BDNF promoter IV upon the activation of the cAMP pathway and present data to suggest that the association of β-actin with BDNF promoter IV is RACK1-dependent. Taken together, our data suggest that β-actin is a new RACK1 binding partner and that the RACK1 and β-actin association participate in the cAMP-dependent regulation of BDNF transcription. PMID:27505161

  7. Branching influences force-velocity curves and length fluctuations in actin networks

    Hansda, Deepak Kumar; Sen, Shamik; Padinhateeri, Ranjith

    2014-12-01

    We investigate collective dynamics of branched actin networks growing against a rigid movable wall constrained by a resistive force. Computing the force velocity relations, we show that the stall force of such networks depends not only on the average number of filaments touching the wall, but also on the amount of fluctuation of the leading edge of the network. These differences arise due to differences in the network architecture, namely, distance between two adjacent branching points and the initial distance of the starting filament from the wall, with their relative magnitudes influencing the nature of the force velocity curves (convex versus concave). We also show that the introduction of branching results in nonmonotonic diffusion constant, a quantity that measures the growth in length fluctuation of the leading edge of the network, as a function of externally applied force. Together our results demonstrate how the collective dynamics of a branched network differs from that of a parallel filament network.

  8. Filament heater current modulation for increased filament lifetime

    The surface conversion H-minus ion source employs two 60 mil tungsten filaments which are approximately 17 centimeters in length. These filaments are heated to approximately 2,800 degrees centigrade by 95--100 amperes of DC heater current. The arc is struck at a 120 hertz rate, for 800 microseconds and is generally run at 30 amperes peak current. Although sputtering is considered a contributing factor in the demise of the filament, evaporation is of greater concern. If the peak arc current can be maintained with less average heater current, the filament evaporation rate for this arc current will diminish. In the vacuum of an ion source, the authors expect the filaments to retain much of their heat throughout a 1 millisecond (12% duty) loss of heater current. A circuit to eliminate 100 ampere heater currents from filaments during the arc pulse was developed. The magnetic field due to the 100 ampere current tends to hold electrons to the filament, decreasing the arc current. By eliminating this magnetic field, the arc should be more efficient, allowing the filaments to run at a lower average heater current. This should extend the filament lifetime. The circuit development and preliminary filament results are discussed

  9. Antenna Mechanism of Length Control of Actin Cables.

    Lishibanya Mohapatra

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Actin cables are linear cytoskeletal structures that serve as tracks for myosin-based intracellular transport of vesicles and organelles in both yeast and mammalian cells. In a yeast cell undergoing budding, cables are in constant dynamic turnover yet some cables grow from the bud neck toward the back of the mother cell until their length roughly equals the diameter of the mother cell. This raises the question: how is the length of these cables controlled? Here we describe a novel molecular mechanism for cable length control inspired by recent experimental observations in cells. This "antenna mechanism" involves three key proteins: formins, which polymerize actin, Smy1 proteins, which bind formins and inhibit actin polymerization, and myosin motors, which deliver Smy1 to formins, leading to a length-dependent actin polymerization rate. We compute the probability distribution of cable lengths as a function of several experimentally tuneable parameters such as the formin-binding affinity of Smy1 and the concentration of myosin motors delivering Smy1. These results provide testable predictions of the antenna mechanism of actin-cable length control.

  10. Oral acetylsalicylic acid and prevalence of actinic keratosis

    Juliano Schmitt

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective: To investigate the influence of a regular oral use of acetylsalicylic acid in the prevalence of actinic keratosis. Methods: A case-control study with dermatologic outpatients above 50 years of age assessed between 2009 and 2011. Cases were defined as those who had been under regular use of oral acetylsalicylic acid for more than six consecutive months. The assessment focused on: age, sex, skin-type, tobacco smoking, use of medication, occurrence of individual or family skin cancer, and sunscreen and sun exposure habits. Actinic keratoses were counted in the medial region of the face and upper limbs. Counts were adjusted by co-variables based on a generalized linear model. Results: A total of 74 cases and 216 controls were assessed. The median time of acetylsalicylic acid use was 36 months. Cases differed from controls as to the highest age, highest prevalence of use of angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors and fewer keratosis on the face and on the upper limbs (p<0.05. The multivariate model showed that the use of acetylsalicylic acid was associated to lower counts of face actinic keratosis and upper-limb erythematous actinic keratosis (p<0.05, regardless of other risk factors. Conclusion: The regular use of oral acetylsalicylic acid for more than six months was associated to a lower prevalence of actinic keratosis, especially facial and erythematous ones.

  11. Theory of a filament initiated nitrogen laser

    Kartashov, Daniil; Ališauskas, Skirmantas; Pugžlys, Audrius; Shneider, Mikhail N.; Baltuška, Andrius

    2015-05-01

    We present the theoretical model for a single-pass, discharge-type standoff nitrogen laser initiated by a femtosecond filament in nitrogen gas. The model is based on the numerical solution of the kinetic equation for the electron energy distribution function self-consistently with balance equations for nitrogen species and laser equations. We identify the kinetic mechanisms responsible for a buildup of population inversion in the filament afterglow plasma and determine the dependence of population inversion density and the parameters of nitrogen lasing at a 337 nm wavelength corresponding to the transition between the C3Πu (v = 0) excited and the X1Σg (v = 0) ground electronic states in a nitrogen molecule on the polarization and wavelength of the driver laser pulse used to produce the filament. We show that population inversion is achieved on an ultrafast time scale of ≈10 ps and decays within the time: <100 ps. We derive the low-signal gain 2.2 cm-1 for lasing from a circularly polarized 0.8 μm near-IR filament and 0.16 cm-1 for a linearly polarized 4 μm mid-IR filament. The results of the numerical simulations demonstrate good quantitative agreement with the experimental measurements.

  12. Competitive effects of oxygen vacancy formation and interfacial oxidation on an ultra-thin HfO2-based resistive switching memory: beyond filament and charge hopping models.

    Nakamura, Hisao; Asai, Yoshihiro

    2016-04-01

    We studied the quantum transport mechanism of an ultra-thin HfO2-based resistive random access memory (ReRAM) cell with TiN electrodes and proposed the design of a sub-10 nm scale device. It is believed that formation and rupture of the conduction path in the local filament causes the switching between high and low resistive states. However, the validity of this simple filament model is not obvious in the sub-10 nm scale device because the redox processes occur mainly in a few nm range at the interface. Furthermore, the intrinsic transport mechanism of the device, in particular, quantum coherence, depends on device materials and length-scale. The relationship between the redox states and the transport mechanism like ballistic or hopping is still under debate when the device length scale is less than 10 nm. In the present study, we performed first-principles calculations of the non-equilibrium Green's function including electron-phonon interactions. We examined several characteristic structures of the HfO(x) wire (nano-scale conduction path) and the interfaces between the resistive switching layer and electrodes. We found that the metal buffer layer induced a change in the oxygen-reduction site from the interface of HfO(x)/TiN to the buffer layer. Even when the inserted buffer layer is a few atomic layers, this effect plays an important role in the enhancement of the performance of ON/OFF resistive switching and in the reduction of the inelastic electric current by electron-phonon scattering. The latter suppresses the hopping mechanism, which makes the ballistic conduction the dominant mechanism. We evaluated the activation energy in the high temperature limit by using the first-principles results of inelastic current. Our theoretical model explains the observed crossover of the temperature dependence of ReRAM cells and gives a new insight into the principle of operation on a sub-10 nm scale ReRAM device. PMID:26975565

  13. Actinic Keratoses: A Comprehensive Update

    Ibrahim, Sherrif F.; Brown, Marc D.

    2009-01-01

    Actinic keratoses are common intra-epidermal neoplasms that lie on a continuum with squamous cell carcinoma. Tightly linked to ultraviolet irradiation, they occur in areas of chronic sun exposure, and early treatment of these lesions may prevent their progression to invasive disease. A large variety of effective treatment modalities exist, and the optimal therapeutic choice is dependent on a variety of patient- and physician-associated variables. Many established and more recent approaches ar...

  14. Shear-induced reorganization of renal proximal tubule cell actin cytoskeleton and apical junctional complexes.

    Duan, Yi; Gotoh, Nanami; Yan, Qingshang; Du, Zhaopeng; Weinstein, Alan M; Wang, Tong; Weinbaum, Sheldon

    2008-08-12

    In this study, we demonstrate that fluid shear stress (FSS)-induced actin cytoskeletal reorganization and junctional formation in renal epithelial cells are nearly completely opposite the corresponding changes in vascular endothelial cells (ECs) [Thi MM et al. (2004) Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 101:16483-16488]. Mouse proximal tubule cells (PTCs) were subjected to 5 h of FSS (1 dyn/cm(2)) to investigate the dynamic responses of the cytoskeletal distribution of filamentous actin (F-actin), ZO-1, E-cadherin, vinculin, and paxillin to FSS. Immunofluorescence analysis revealed that FSS caused basal stress fiber disruption, more densely distributed peripheral actin bands (DPABs), and the formation of both tight junctions (TJs) and adherens junctions (AJs). A dramatic reinforcement of vinculin staining was found at the cell borders as well as the cell interior. These responses were abrogated by the actin-disrupting drug, cytochalasin D. To interpret these results, we propose a "junctional buttressing" model for PTCs in which FSS enables the DPABs, TJs, and AJs to become more tightly connected. In contrast, in the "bumper-car" model for ECs, all junctional connections were severely disrupted by FSS. This "junctional buttressing" model explains why a FSS of only 1/10 of that used in the EC study can cause a similarly dramatic, cytoskeletal response in these tall, cuboidal epithelial cells; and why junctional buttressing between adjacent cells may benefit renal epithelium in maximizing flow-activated, brush border-dependent, transcellular salt and water reabsorption. PMID:18685100

  15. Interaction between Calcium and Actin in Guard Cell and Pollen Signaling Networks

    Dong-Hua Chen

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Calcium (Ca2+ plays important roles in plant growth, development, and signal transduction. It is a vital nutrient for plant physical design, such as cell wall and membrane, and also serves as a counter-cation for biochemical, inorganic, and organic anions, and more particularly, its concentration change in cytosol is a ubiquitous second messenger in plant physiological signaling in responses to developmental and environmental stimuli. Actin cytoskeleton is well known for its importance in cellular architecture maintenance and its significance in cytoplasmic streaming and cell division. In plant cell system, the actin dynamics is a process of polymerization and de-polymerization of globular actin and filamentous actin and that acts as an active regulator for calcium signaling by controlling calcium evoked physiological responses. The elucidation of the interaction between calcium and actin dynamics will be helpful for further investigation of plant cell signaling networks at molecular level. This review mainly focuses on the recent advances in understanding the interaction between the two aforementioned signaling components in two well-established model systems of plant, guard cell, and pollen.

  16. Reactive oxygen species (ROS)-induced actin glutathionylation controls actin dynamics in neutrophils

    Sakai, Jiro; Li, Jingyu; Subramanian, Kulandayan K.; Mondal, Subhanjan; Bajrami, Besnik; Hattori, Hidenori; Jia, Yonghui; Dickinson, Bryan C.; Zhong, Jia; Ye, Keqiang; Chang, Christopher J; Ho, Ye-Shih; Zhou, Jun; Luo, Hongbo R.

    2012-01-01

    Summary The regulation of actin dynamics is pivotal for cellular processes such as cell adhesion, migration, and phagocytosis, and thus is crucial for neutrophils to fulfill their roles in innate immunity. Many factors have been implicated in signal-induced actin polymerization, however the essential nature of the potential negative modulators are still poorly understood. Here we report that NADPH oxidase-dependent physiologically generated reactive oxygen species (ROS) negatively regulate actin polymerization in stimulated neutrophils via driving reversible actin glutathionylation. Disruption of glutaredoxin 1 (Grx1), an enzyme that catalyzes actin deglutathionylation, increased actin glutathionylation, attenuated actin polymerization, and consequently impaired neutrophil polarization, chemotaxis, adhesion, and phagocytosis. Consistently, Grx1-deficient murine neutrophils showed impaired in vivo recruitment to sites of inflammation and reduced bactericidal capability. Together, these results present a physiological role for glutaredoxin and ROS- induced reversible actin glutathionylation in regulation of actin dynamics in neutrophils. PMID:23159440

  17. Bacterial intermediate filaments

    Charbon, Godefroid; Cabeen, M.; Jacobs-Wagner, C.

    2009-01-01

    controls the length of the structure by favoring lateral insertion of crescentin subunits over bipolar longitudinal extension when the structure ends reach the cell poles. The crescentin structure is stably anchored to the cell envelope, and this cellular organization requires MreB function, identifying a...... new function for MreB and providing a parallel to the role of actin in IF assembly and organization in metazoan cells. Additionally, analysis of an MreB localization mutant suggests that cell wall insertion during cell elongation normally occurs along two helices of opposite handedness, each...

  18. Heterologous expression of cellobiohydrolases in filamentous fungi

    Zoglowek, Marta; Lübeck, Peter S.; Ahring, Birgitte K.;

    2015-01-01

    Cellobiohydrolases are among the most important enzymes functioning in the hydrolysis of crystalline cellulose, significantly contributing to the efficient biorefining of recalcitrant lignocellulosic biomass into biofuels and bio-based products. Filamentous fungi are recognized as both well...... into valuable products. However, due to low cellobiohydrolase activities, certain fungi might be deficient with regard to enzymes of value for cellulose conversion, and improving cellobiohydrolase expression in filamentous fungi has proven to be challenging. In this review, we examine the effects of altering...... promoters, signal peptides, culture conditions and host post-translational modifications. For heterologous cellobiohydrolase production in filamentous fungi to become an industrially feasible process, the construction of site-integrating plasmids, development of protease-deficient strains and glycosylation...

  19. Reduced filamentation in high power semiconductor lasers

    Skovgaard, Peter M. W.; McInerney, John; O'Brien, Peter

    1999-01-01

    High brightness semiconductor lasers have applications in fields ranging from material processing to medicine. The main difficulty associated with high brightness is that high optical power densities cause damage to the laser facet and thus require large apertures. This, in turn, results in spatio......-temporal instabilities such as filamentation which degrades spatial coherence and brightness. We first evaluate performance of existing designs with a “top-hat” shaped transverse current density profile. The unstable nature of highly excited semiconductor material results in a run-away process where small modulations in...... the optical field causes spatial hole-burning and thus filamentation. To reduce filamentation we propose a new, relatively simple design based on inhomogeneous pumping in which the injected current has a gradual transverse profile. We confirm the improved laser performance theoretically and...

  20. Oscillating Filaments: I - Oscillation and Geometrical Fragmentation

    Gritschneder, Matthias; Burkert, Andreas

    2016-01-01

    We study the stability of filaments in equilibrium between gravity and internal as well as external pressure using the grid based AMR-code RAMSES. A homogeneous, straight cylinder below a critical line mass is marginally stable. However, if the cylinder is bent, e.g. with a slight sinusoidal perturbation, an otherwise stable configuration starts to oscillate, is triggered into fragmentation and collapses. This previously unstudied behavior allows a filament to fragment at any given scale, as long as it has slight bends. We call this process `geometrical fragmentation'. In our realization the spacing between the cores matches the wavelength of the sinusoidal perturbation, whereas up to now, filaments were thought to be only fragmenting on the characteristical scale set by the mass-to-line ratio. Using first principles, we derive the oscillation period as well as the collapse timescale analytically. To enable a direct comparison with observations, we study the line-of-sight velocity for different inclinations. ...

  1. Collision of almost parallel vortex filaments

    Banica, Valeria; Faou, Erwan; Miot, Evelyne

    2015-01-01

    We investigate the occurrence of collisions in the evolution of vortex filaments through a system introduced by Klein, Majda and Damodaran [KMD95] and Zakharov [Z88, Z99]. We first establish rigorously the existence of a pair of almost parallel vortex filaments, with opposite circulation, colliding at some point in finite time. The collision mechanism is based on the one of the self-similar solutions of the model, described in [BFM14]. In the second part of this paper we extend this construct...

  2. Formation of actin networks in microfluidic concentration gradients

    Strelnikova, Natalja; Herren, Florian; Schoenenberger, Cora-Ann; Pfohl, Thomas

    2016-05-01

    The physical properties of cytoskeletal networks are contributors in a number of mechanical responses of cells including cellular deformation and locomotion, and are crucial for the proper action of living cells. Local chemical gradients modulate cytoskeletal functionality including the interactions of the cytoskeleton with other cellular components. Actin is a major constituent of the cytoskeleton. Introducing a microfluidic-based platform, we explored the impact of concentration gradients on the formation and structural properties of actin networks. Microfluidics-controlled flow-free steady state experimental conditions allow for the generation of chemical gradients of different profiles, such as linear or step-like. We discovered specific features of actin networks emerging in defined gradients. In particular, we analyzed the effects of spatial conditions on network properties, bending rigidities of network links, and the network elasticity.

  3. From pollen actin to crop male sterility

    2000-01-01

    Actin plays an important role in the life activity of animal and plant cells. Pollen cells have plenty of actin whose structure and characteristics are very similar to the animal actin. The nucleotide sequence and amino acid sequence of plant actin gene are very similar to those of the animal gene. The content of pollen actin from male sterile plants is much more lower than that from its maintainer plants. The expression of actin gene is organ-specific during the plant development. The expression quantity of actin gene in pollen is much more higher than those from root, stem and leaf. The expression plasmid of the anti-sense actin gene was constructed, transferred to the protoplasts of wheat and tomato to inhibit the expression of actin gene in pollen and thus the male sterile plants of wheat and tomato were obtained. The actin in pollens from the transgenic plants was reduced significantly, whereas the pistil was not affected. This study might pave a new way to breeding male sterile lines for the application of hybrid vigor of wheat and tomato.

  4. Low power W:AlOx/WOx bilayer resistive switching structure based on conductive filament formation and rupture mechanism

    Bai, Yue; Wu, Huaqiang; Zhang, Ye; Wu, Minghao; Zhang, Jinyu; Deng, Ning; Qian, He; Yu, Zhiping

    2013-04-01

    We report the design and fabrication of W:AlOx/WOx bilayer based resistive switching cells in a standard 0.18 μm CMOS process with only one extra mask. The devices show excellent performance with low power consumption. Low operation voltages (SET voltage WOx bilayer structure resistive switching phenomena.

  5. Wdpcp, a PCP protein required for ciliogenesis, regulates directional cell migration and cell polarity by direct modulation of the actin cytoskeleton.

    Cheng Cui

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Planar cell polarity (PCP regulates cell alignment required for collective cell movement during embryonic development. This requires PCP/PCP effector proteins, some of which also play essential roles in ciliogenesis, highlighting the long-standing question of the role of the cilium in PCP. Wdpcp, a PCP effector, was recently shown to regulate both ciliogenesis and collective cell movement, but the underlying mechanism is unknown. Here we show Wdpcp can regulate PCP by direct modulation of the actin cytoskeleton. These studies were made possible by recovery of a Wdpcp mutant mouse model. Wdpcp-deficient mice exhibit phenotypes reminiscent of Bardet-Biedl/Meckel-Gruber ciliopathy syndromes, including cardiac outflow tract and cochlea defects associated with PCP perturbation. We observed Wdpcp is localized to the transition zone, and in Wdpcp-deficient cells, Sept2, Nphp1, and Mks1 were lost from the transition zone, indicating Wdpcp is required for recruitment of proteins essential for ciliogenesis. Wdpcp is also found in the cytoplasm, where it is localized in the actin cytoskeleton and in focal adhesions. Wdpcp interacts with Sept2 and is colocalized with Sept2 in actin filaments, but in Wdpcp-deficient cells, Sept2 was lost from the actin cytoskeleton, suggesting Wdpcp is required for Sept2 recruitment to actin filaments. Significantly, organization of the actin filaments and focal contacts were markedly changed in Wdpcp-deficient cells. This was associated with decreased membrane ruffling, failure to establish cell polarity, and loss of directional cell migration. These results suggest the PCP defects in Wdpcp mutants are not caused by loss of cilia, but by direct disruption of the actin cytoskeleton. Consistent with this, Wdpcp mutant cochlea has normal kinocilia and yet exhibits PCP defects. Together, these findings provide the first evidence, to our knowledge, that a PCP component required for ciliogenesis can directly modulate the actin

  6. Towards the Structure Determination of a Modulated Protein Crystal: The Semicrystalline State of Profilin:Actin

    Borgstahl, G.; Lovelace, J.; Snell, E. H.; Bellamy, H.

    2003-01-01

    One of the remaining challenges to structural biology is the solution of modulated structures. While small molecule crystallographers have championed this type of structure, to date, no modulated macromolecular structures have been determined. Modulation of the molecular structures within the crystal can produce satellite reflections or a superlattice of reflections in reciprocal space. We have developed the data collection methods and strategies that are needed to collect and analyze these data. If the macromolecule's crystal lattice is composed of physiologically relevant packing contacts, structural changes induced under physiological conditions can cause distortion relevant to the function and biophysical processes of the molecule making up the crystal. By careful measurement of the distortion, and the corresponding three-dimensional structure of the distorted molecule, we will visualize the motion and mechanism of the biological macromolecule(s). We have measured the modulated diffraction pattern produced by the semicrystalline state of profilin:actin crystals using highly parallel and highly monochromatic synchrotron radiation coupled with fine phi slicing (0.001-0.010 degrees) for structure determination. These crystals present these crystals present a unique opportunity to address an important question in structural biology. The modulation is believed to be due to the formation of actin helical filaments from the actin beta ribbon upon the pH-induced dissociation of profilin. To date, the filamentous state of actin has resisted crystallization and no detailed structures are available. The semicrystalline state profilin:actin crystals provides a unique opportunity to understand the many conformational states of actin. This knowledge is essential for understanding the dynamics underlying shape changes and motility of eukaryotic cells. Many essential processes, such as cytokinesis, phagocytosis, and cellular migration depend upon the capacity of the actin

  7. CADM1 controls actin cytoskeleton assembly and regulates extracellular matrix adhesion in human mast cells.

    Elena P Moiseeva

    Full Text Available CADM1 is a major receptor for the adhesion of mast cells (MCs to fibroblasts, human airway smooth muscle cells (HASMCs and neurons. It also regulates E-cadherin and alpha6beta4 integrin in other cell types. Here we investigated a role for CADM1 in MC adhesion to both cells and extracellular matrix (ECM. Downregulation of CADM1 in the human MC line HMC-1 resulted not only in reduced adhesion to HASMCs, but also reduced adhesion to their ECM. Time-course studies in the presence of EDTA to inhibit integrins demonstrated that CADM1 provided fast initial adhesion to HASMCs and assisted with slower adhesion to ECM. CADM1 downregulation, but not antibody-dependent CADM1 inhibition, reduced MC adhesion to ECM, suggesting indirect regulation of ECM adhesion. To investigate potential mechanisms, phosphotyrosine signalling and polymerisation of actin filaments, essential for integrin-mediated adhesion, were examined. Modulation of CADM1 expression positively correlated with surface KIT levels and polymerisation of cortical F-actin in HMC-1 cells. It also influenced phosphotyrosine signalling and KIT tyrosine autophosphorylation. CADM1 accounted for 46% of surface KIT levels and 31% of F-actin in HMC-1 cells. CADM1 downregulation resulted in elongation of cortical actin filaments in both HMC-1 cells and human lung MCs and increased cell rigidity of HMC-1 cells. Collectively these data suggest that CADM1 is a key adhesion receptor, which regulates MC net adhesion, both directly through CADM1-dependent adhesion, and indirectly through the regulation of other adhesion receptors. The latter is likely to occur via docking of KIT and polymerisation of cortical F-actin. Here we propose a stepwise model of adhesion with CADM1 as a driving force for net MC adhesion.

  8. A Multimodular Tensegrity Model of an Actin Stress Fiber

    Luo, Yaozhi; Xu, Xian; Lele, Tanmay; Kumar, Sanjay; Ingber, Donald E.

    2008-01-01

    Stress fibers are contractile bundles in the cytoskeleton that stabilize cell structure by exerting traction forces on extracellular matrix. Individual stress fibers are molecular bundles composed of parallel actin and myosin filaments linked by various actin-binding proteins, which are organized end-on-end in a sarcomere-like pattern within an elongated three-dimensional network. While measurements of single stress fibers in living cells show that they behave like tensed viscoelastic fibers, precisely how this mechanical behavior arises from this complex supramolecular arrangement of protein components remains unclear. Here we show that computationally modeling a stress fiber as a multi-modular tensegrity network can predict several key behaviors of stress fibers measured in living cells, including viscoelastic retraction, fiber splaying after severing, non-uniform contraction, and elliptical strain of a puncture wound within the fiber. The tensegrity model also can explain how they simultaneously experience passive tension and generate active contraction forces; in contrast, a tensed cable net model predicts some, but not all, of these properties. Thus, tensegrity models may provide a useful link between molecular and cellular scale mechanical behaviors, and represent a new handle on multi-scale modeling of living materials. PMID:18632107

  9. Coupled actin-lamin biopolymer networks and protecting DNA

    Zhang, Tao; Rocklin, D. Zeb; Mao, Xiaoming; Schwarz, J. M.

    The mechanical properties of cells are largely determined by networks of semiflexible biopolymers forming the cytoskeleton. Similarly, the mechanical properties of cell nuclei are also largely determined by networks of semiflexible biopolymers forming the nuclear cytoskeleton. In particular, a network of filamentous lamin sits just inside the inner nuclear membrane to presumably protect the heart of the cell nucleus--the DNA. It has been demonstrated over the past decade that the actin cytoskeletal biopolymer network and the lamin biopolymer network are coupled via a sequence of proteins bridging the outer and inner nuclear membranes, known as the LINC complex. We, therefore, probe the consequences of such a coupling in a model biopolymer network system via numerical simulations to understand the resulting deformations in the lamin network in response to perturbations in the actin cytoskeletal network. We find, for example, that the force transmission across the coupled system can depend sensitively on the concentration of LINC complexes. Such study could have implications for mechanical mechanisms of the regulation of transcription since DNA couples to lamin via lamin-binding domains so that deformations in the lamin network may result in deformations in the DNA.

  10. CVD-produced boron filaments

    Wawner, F. E.; Debolt, H. E.; Suplinskas, R. D.

    1980-01-01

    A technique for producing boron filaments with an average tensile strength of 6.89 GPa has been developed which involves longitudinal splitting of the filament and core (substrate) removal by etching. Splitting is accomplished by a pinch wheel device which continuously splits filaments in lengths of 3.0 m by applying a force to the side of the filament to create a crack which is then propagated along the axis by a gentle sliding action. To facilitate the splitting, a single 10 mil tungsten substrate is used instead of the usual 0.5 mil substrate. A solution of hot 30% hydrogen peroxide is used to remove the core without attacking the boron. An alternative technique is to alter the residual stress by heavily etching the filament. Average strengths in the 4.83-5.52 GPa range have been obtained by etching an 8 mil filament to 4 mil.

  11. Filament Identification through Mathematical Morphology

    Koch, Eric W

    2015-01-01

    We present a new algorithm for detecting filamentary structure FilFinder. The algorithm uses the techniques of mathematical morphology for filament identification, presenting a complementary approach to current algorithms which use matched filtering or critical manifolds. Unlike other methods, FilFinder identifies filaments over a wide dynamic range in brightness. We apply the new algorithm to far infrared imaging data of dust emission released by the Herschel Gould Belt Survey team. Our preliminary analysis characterizes both filaments and fainter striations. We find a typical filament width of 0.09 pc across the sample, but the brightness varies from cloud to cloud. Several regions show a bimodal filament brightness distribution, with the bright mode (filaments) being an order of magnitude brighter than the faint mode (striations). Using the Rolling Hough Transform, we characterize the orientations of the striations in the data, finding preferred directions that agree with magnetic field direction where dat...

  12. THE APPARATUS FOR ALIGNMENT OF THE PHOTOMETRIC LAMP FILAMENT

    V. A. Dlugunovich

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available During photometric measurements involving the use of photometric lamps it is necessary that the filament of lamp takes a strictly predetermined position with respect to the photodetector and the optical axis of the photometric setup. The errors in positioning of alignment filament with respect to the optical axis of the measuring system lead to increase the uncertainty of measurement of the photometric characteristics of the light sources. A typical method for alignment of filament of photometric lamps is based on the use a diopter tubes (telescopes. Using this method, the mounting of filament to the required position is carried out by successive approximations, which requires special concentration and a lot of time. The aim of this work is to develop an apparatus for alignment which allows simultaneous alignment of the filament of lamps in two mutually perpendicular planes. The method and apparatus for alignment of the photometric lamp filament during measurements of the photometric characteristics of light sources based on two digital video cameras is described in this paper. The apparatus allows to simultaneously displaying the image of lamps filament on the computer screen in two mutually perpendicular planes. The apparatus eliminates a large number of functional units requiring elementwise alignment and reduces the time required to carry out the alignment. The apparatus also provides the imaging of lamps filament with opaque coated on the bulb. The apparatus is used at the National standard of light intensity and illuminance units of the Republic of Belarus. 

  13. Modeling of the bending strain dependence of the critical current in Bi2223/Ag composite tapes based on the damage stress of the superconducting filament

    Gou, Xiaofan; Shen, Qiang

    2012-05-01

    An analysis model of the bending strain dependence of the critical current in multifilamentary Bi2223/Ag composite tapes is presented. To investigate the effect of the mechanical properties of the Bi2223 superconducting filament, the actual part for carrying current, its damage stress and elastic modulus are introduced. The calculated result of the variation of the critical current with the bending strain is well agreed with the experimental one. The further studies find that the mechanical properties of the filament have a remarkable effect on the bending strain dependence of the critical current. Specifically, the larger the damage stress and elastic modulus of the filament are, the higher the critical current is, when the bending strain increases to a larger value beyond the critical one.

  14. Modeling of the bending strain dependence of the critical current in Bi2223/Ag composite tapes based on the damage stress of the superconducting filament

    Gou Xiaofan, E-mail: xfgou@hhu.edu.cn [Department of Engineering Mechanics, Hohai University, Nanjing, Jiangsu 210098 (China); Shen Qiang [Department of Engineering Mechanics, Hohai University, Nanjing, Jiangsu 210098 (China)

    2012-05-15

    An analysis model of the bending strain dependence of the critical current in multifilamentary Bi2223/Ag composite tapes is presented. To investigate the effect of the mechanical properties of the Bi2223 superconducting filament, the actual part for carrying current, its damage stress and elastic modulus are introduced. The calculated result of the variation of the critical current with the bending strain is well agreed with the experimental one. The further studies find that the mechanical properties of the filament have a remarkable effect on the bending strain dependence of the critical current. Specifically, the larger the damage stress and elastic modulus of the filament are, the higher the critical current is, when the bending strain increases to a larger value beyond the critical one.

  15. Actin gene family in Branchiostoma belched

    2016-01-01

    Actin is a highly conserved cytoskeletal protein that is found in essentially all eukaryotic cells,which plays a paramount role in several basic functions of the organism, such as the maintenance of cellshape, cell division, cell mobility and muscle contraction. However, little is known about actin gene family inChinese amphioxus (Branchiostoma belcheri). Here we systemically analyzed the actin genes family inBranchiostoma belched and found that amphioxus contains 33 actin genes. These genes have undergoneextensive expansion through tandem duplications by phylogenetic analysis. In addition, we also providedevidence indicating that actin genes have divergent functions by specializing their EST data in both Bran-chiostoma belched and Branchiostoma florida. Our results provided an alternative explanation for the evolu-tion of actin genes, and gave new insights into their functional roles.

  16. Soliton on thin vortex filament

    Showing that one of the equations found by Wadati, Konno and Ichikawa is equivalent to the equation of motion of a thin vortex filament, we investigate solitons on the vortex filament. N vortex soliton solution is given in terms of the inverse scattering method. We examine two soliton collision processes on the filament. Our analysis provides the theoretical foundation of two soliton collision processes observed numerically by Aref and Flinchem. (author)

  17. Solar Filament Extraction and Characterizing

    Yuan, Yuan; Shih, F. Y.; Jing, J.; Wang, H.

    2010-05-01

    This paper presents a new method to extract and characterize solar filaments from H-alpha full-disk images produced by Big Bear Solar Observatory. A cascading Hough Transform method is designed to identify solar disk center location and radius. Solar disks are segmented from the background, and unbalanced illumination on the surface of solar disks is removed using polynomial surface fitting. And then a localized adaptive thresholding is employed to extract solar filament candidates. After the removal of small solar filament candidates, the remaining larger candidates are used as the seeds of region growing. The procedure of region growing not only connects broken filaments but also generate complete shape for each filament. Mathematical morphology thinning is adopted to produce the skeleton of each filament, and graph theory is used to prune branches and barbs to get the main skeleton. The length and the location of the main skeleton is characterized. The proposed method can help scientists and researches study the evolution of solar filament, for instance, to detect solar filament eruption. The presented method has already been used by Space Weather Research Lab of New Jersey Institute of Technology (http://swrl.njit.edu) to generate the solar filament online catalog using H-alpha full-disk images of Global H-alpha Network (http://swrl.njit.edu/ghn_web/).

  18. Chaperonin filaments: The archael cytoskeleton

    Trent, J.D.; Kagawa, H.K.; Yaoi, Takuro; Olle, E.; Zaluzec, N.J.

    1997-08-01

    Chaperonins are multi-subunit double-ring complexed composed of 60-kDa proteins that are believed to mediate protein folding in vivo. The chaperonins in the hyperthermophilic archaeon Sulfolobus shibatae are composed of the organism`s two most abundant proteins, which represent 4% of its total protein and have an intracellular concentration of {ge} 3.0 mg/ml. At concentrations of 1.0 mg/ml, purified chaperonin proteins aggregate to form ordered filaments. Filament formation, which requires Mg{sup ++} and nucleotide binding (not hydrolysis), occurs at physiological temperatures under conditions suggesting filaments may exist in vivo. If the estimated 4,600 chaperonins per cell, formed filaments in vivo, they could create a matrix of filaments that would span the diameter of an average S. shibatae cell 100 times. Direct observations of unfixed, minimally treated cells by intermediate voltage electron microscopy (300 kV) revealed an intracellular network of filaments that resembles chaperonin filaments produced in vitro. The hypothesis that the intracellular network contains chaperonins is supported by immunogold analyses. The authors propose that chaperonin activity may be regulated in vivo by filament formation and that chaperonin filaments may serve a cytoskeleton-like function in archaea and perhaps in other prokaryotes.

  19. Rho, nuclear actin, and actin-binding proteins in the regulation of transcription and gene expression.

    Rajakylä, Eeva Kaisa; Vartiainen, Maria K

    2014-01-01

    Actin cytoskeleton is one of the main targets of Rho GTPases, which act as molecular switches on many signaling pathways. During the past decade, actin has emerged as an important regulator of gene expression. Nuclear actin plays a key role in transcription, chromatin remodeling, and pre-mRNA processing. In addition, the "status" of the actin cytoskeleton is used as a signaling intermediate by at least the MKL1-SRF and Hippo-pathways, which culminate in the transcriptional regulation of cytoskeletal and growth-promoting genes, respectively. Rho GTPases may therefore regulate gene expression by controlling either cytoplasmic or nuclear actin dynamics. Although the regulation of nuclear actin polymerization is still poorly understood, many actin-binding proteins, which are downstream effectors of Rho, are found in the nuclear compartment. In this review, we discuss the possible mechanisms and key proteins that may mediate the transcriptional regulation by Rho GTPases through actin. PMID:24603113

  20. Cluster Abell 520: a perspective based on member galaxies. A cluster forming at the crossing of three filaments?

    Girardi, M; Boschin, W; Ellingson, E

    2008-01-01

    The connection of cluster mergers with the presence of extended, diffuse radio sources in galaxy clusters is still debated. An interesting case is the rich, merging cluster Abell 520, containing a radio halo. A recent gravitational analysis has shown in this cluster the presence of a massive dark core suggested to be a possible problem for the current cold dark matter paradigm. We aim to obtain new insights into the internal dynamics of Abell 520 analyzing velocities and positions of member galaxies. Our analysis is based on redshift data for 293 galaxies in the cluster field obtained combining new redshift data for 86 galaxies acquired at the TNG with data obtained by CNOC team and other few data from the literature. We also use new photometric data obtained at the INT telescope. We combine galaxy velocities and positions to select 167 cluster members around z~0.201. We analyze the cluster structure using the weighted gap analysis, the KMM method, the Dressler-Shectman statistics and the analysis of the velo...

  1. Packaging of actin into Ebola virus VLPs

    Harty Ronald N

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The actin cytoskeleton has been implicated in playing an important role assembly and budding of several RNA virus families including retroviruses and paramyxoviruses. In this report, we sought to determine whether actin is incorporated into Ebola VLPs, and thus may play a role in assembly and/or budding of Ebola virus. Our results indicated that actin and Ebola virus VP40 strongly co-localized in transfected cells as determined by confocal microscopy. In addition, actin was packaged into budding VP40 VLPs as determined by a functional budding assay and protease protection assay. Co-expression of a membrane-anchored form of Ebola virus GP enhanced the release of both VP40 and actin in VLPs. Lastly, disruption of the actin cytoskeleton with latrunculin-A suggests that actin may play a functional role in budding of VP40/GP VLPs. These data suggest that VP40 may interact with cellular actin, and that actin may play a role in assembly and/or budding of Ebola VLPs.

  2. Prevalent presence of periodic actin-spectrin-based membrane skeleton in a broad range of neuronal cell types and animal species.

    He, Jiang; Zhou, Ruobo; Wu, Zhuhao; Carrasco, Monica A; Kurshan, Peri T; Farley, Jonathan E; Simon, David J; Wang, Guiping; Han, Boran; Hao, Junjie; Heller, Evan; Freeman, Marc R; Shen, Kang; Maniatis, Tom; Tessier-Lavigne, Marc; Zhuang, Xiaowei

    2016-05-24

    Actin, spectrin, and associated molecules form a periodic, submembrane cytoskeleton in the axons of neurons. For a better understanding of this membrane-associated periodic skeleton (MPS), it is important to address how prevalent this structure is in different neuronal types, different subcellular compartments, and across different animal species. Here, we investigated the organization of spectrin in a variety of neuronal- and glial-cell types. We observed the presence of MPS in all of the tested neuronal types cultured from mouse central and peripheral nervous systems, including excitatory and inhibitory neurons from several brain regions, as well as sensory and motor neurons. Quantitative analyses show that MPS is preferentially formed in axons in all neuronal types tested here: Spectrin shows a long-range, periodic distribution throughout all axons but appears periodic only in a small fraction of dendrites, typically in the form of isolated patches in subregions of these dendrites. As in dendrites, we also observed patches of periodic spectrin structures in a small fraction of glial-cell processes in four types of glial cells cultured from rodent tissues. Interestingly, despite its strong presence in the axonal shaft, MPS is disrupted in most presynaptic boutons but is present in an appreciable fraction of dendritic spine necks, including some projecting from dendrites where such a periodic structure is not observed in the shaft. Finally, we found that spectrin is capable of adopting a similar periodic organization in neurons of a variety of animal species, including Caenorhabditis elegans, Drosophila, Gallus gallus, Mus musculus, and Homo sapiens. PMID:27162329

  3. Motor-free actin bundle contractility driven by molecular crowding

    Schnauß, Jörg; Schuldt, Carsten; Schmidt, B U Sebastian; Glaser, Martin; Strehle, Dan; Heussinger, Claus; Käs, Josef A

    2015-01-01

    Modeling approaches of suspended, rod-like particles and recent experimental data have shown that depletion forces display different signatures depending on the orientation of these particles. It has been shown that axial attraction of two rods yields contractile forces of 0.1pN that are independent of the relative axial shift of the two rods. Here, we measured depletion-caused interactions of actin bundles extending the phase space of single pairs of rods to a multi-particle system. In contrast to a filament pair, we found forces up to 3pN . Upon bundle relaxation forces decayed exponentially with a mean decay time of 3.4s . These different dynamics are explained within the frame of a mathematical model by taking pairwise interactions to a multi-filament scale. The macromolecular content employed for our experiments is well below the crowding of cells. Thus, we propose that arising forces can contribute to biological force generation without the need to convert chemical energy into mechanical work.

  4. Actin flow and talin dynamics govern rigidity sensing in actin–integrin linkage through talin extension

    Hirata, Hiroaki; Chiam, Keng-Hwee; Lim, Chwee Teck; Sokabe, Masahiro

    2014-01-01

    At cell–substrate adhesion sites, the linkage between actin filaments and integrin is regulated by mechanical stiffness of the substrate. Of potential molecular regulators, the linker proteins talin and vinculin are of particular interest because mechanical extension of talin induces vinculin binding with talin, which reinforces the actin–integrin linkage. For understanding the molecular and biophysical mechanism of rigidity sensing at cell–substrate adhesion sites, we constructed a simple physical model to examine a role of talin extension in the stiffness-dependent regulation of actin–integrin linkage. We show that talin molecules linking between retrograding actin filaments and substrate-bound integrin are extended in a manner dependent on substrate stiffness. The model predicts that, in adhesion complexes containing ≈30 talin links, talin is extended enough for vinculin binding when the substrate is stiffer than 1 kPa. The lifetime of talin links needs to be 2–5 s to achieve an appropriate response of talin extension against substrate stiffness. Furthermore, changes in actin velocity drastically shift the range of substrate stiffness that induces talin–vinculin binding. Our results suggest that talin extension is a key step in sensing and responding to substrate stiffness at cell adhesion sites. PMID:25142525

  5. Observations and Implications of Large-Amplitude Longitudinal Oscillations in a Solar Filament

    Luna, M; Muglach, K; Karpen, J; Gilbert, H; Kucera, T A; Uritsky, V

    2014-01-01

    On 20 August 2010 an energetic disturbance triggered large-amplitude longitudinal oscillations in a nearby filament. The triggering mechanism appears to be episodic jets connecting the energetic event with the filament threads. In the present work we analyze this periodic motion in a large fraction of the filament to characterize the underlying physics of the oscillation as well as the filament properties. The results support our previous theoretical conclusions that the restoring force of large-amplitude longitudinal oscillations is solar gravity, and the damping mechanism is the ongoing accumulation of mass onto the oscillating threads. Based on our previous work, we used the fitted parameters to determine the magnitude and radius of curvature of the dipped magnetic field along the filament, as well as the mass accretion rate onto the filament threads. These derived properties are nearly uniform along the filament, indicating a remarkable degree of cohesiveness throughout the filament channel. Moreover, the...

  6. Adenosine Diphosphate Ribosylation Factor-GTPaseActivating Protein Stimulates the Transport of AUX1Endosome, Which Relies on Actin Cytoskeletal Organization in Rice Root DevelopmentF

    Cheng Du; Yunyuan XU; Yingdian Wang; Kang Chong

    2011-01-01

    Polar auxin transport,which depends on polarized subcellular distribution of AUXIN RESISTANT 1/LIKE AUX1 (AUX1/LAX) influx carriers and PIN-FORMED (PIN) efflux carriers,mediates various processes of plant growth and development.Endosomal recycling of PIN1 is mediated by an adenosine diphosphate (ADP)ribosylation factor (ARF)-GTPase exchange factor protein,GNOM.However,the mediation of auxin influx carrier recycling is poorly understood.Here,we report that overexpression of OsAGAP,an ARF-GTPase-activating protein in rice,stimulates vesicle transport from the plasma membrane to the Golgi apparatus in protoplasts and transgenic plants and induces the accumulation of early endosomes and AUX1.AUX1 endosomes could partially colocalize with FM4-64 labeled early endosome after actin disruption.Furthermore,OsAGAP is involved in actin cytoskeletal organization,and its overexpression tends to reduce the thickness and bundling of actin filaments.Fluorescence recovery after photobleaching analysis revealed exocytosis of the AUX1 recycling endosome was not affected in the OsAGAP overexpression cells,and was only slightly promoted when the actin filaments were completely disrupted by Lat B.Thus,we propose that AUX1 accumulation in the OsAGAP overexpression and actin disrupted cells may be due to the fact that endocytosis of the auxin influx carrier AUX1 early endosome was greatly promoted by actin cytoskeleton disruption.

  7. Malaria parasites form filamentous cell-to-cell connections during reproduction in the mosquito midgut

    Ingrid Rupp; Gabriele Pradel; Ludmilla Sologub; Kim C Williamson; Matthias Scheuermayer; Luc Reininger; Christian Doerig; Saliha Eksi; Davy U Kombilaa; Matthias Frank

    2011-01-01

    Physical contact is important for the interaction between animal cells, but it can represent a major challenge for protists like malaria parasites. Recently, novel filamentous cell-cell contacts have been identified in different types of eukaryotic cells and termed nanotubes due to their morphological appearance. Nanotubes represent small dynamic membranous extensions that consist of F-actin and are considered an ancient feature evolved by eukaryotic cells to establish contact for communication. We here describe similar tubular structures in the malaria pathogen Plasmodium falciparum, which emerge from the surfaces of the forming gametes upon gametocyte activation in the mosquito midgut. The filaments can exhibit a length of>100 μm and contain the F-actin isoform actin 2. They actively form within a few minutes after gametocyte activation and persist until the zygote transforms into the ookinete. The filaments originate from the parasite plasma membrane, are close ended and express adhesion proteins on their surfaces that are typically found in gametes, like Pfs230, Pfs48/45 or Pfs25, but not the zygote surface protein Pfs28. We show that these tubular structures represent long-distance cell-to-cell connections between sexual stage parasites and demonstrate that they meet the characteristics of nanotubes. We propose that malaria parasites utilize these adhesive "nanotubes" in order to facilitate intercellular contact between gametes during reproduction in the mosquito midgut.

  8. Genome-Wide siRNA Screen Identifies Complementary Signaling Pathways Involved in Listeria Infection and Reveals Different Actin Nucleation Mechanisms during Listeria Cell Invasion and Actin Comet Tail Formation.

    Kühbacher, Andreas; Emmenlauer, Mario; Rämo, Pauli; Kafai, Natasha; Dehio, Christoph; Cossart, Pascale; Pizarro-Cerdá, Javier

    2015-01-01

    Listeria monocytogenes enters nonphagocytic cells by a receptor-mediated mechanism that is dependent on a clathrin-based molecular machinery and actin rearrangements. Bacterial intra- and intercellular movements are also actin dependent and rely on the actin nucleating Arp2/3 complex, which is activated by host-derived nucleation-promoting factors downstream of the cell receptor Met during entry and by the bacterial nucleation-promoting factor ActA during comet tail formation. By genome-wide ...

  9. Genome-wide siRNA Screen identifies complementary signaling pathways involved in listeria infection and reveals different actin nucleation mechanisms during listeria cell invasion and actin comet tail formation

    Emmenlauer, Mario; Rämo, Pauli; Kafai, Natasha; Dehio, Christoph; Cossart, Pascale; Pizarro-Cerda, Javier

    2015-01-01

    Listeria monocytogenes enters nonphagocytic cells by a receptor-mediated mechanism that is dependent on a clathrin-based molecular machinery and actin rearrangements. Bacterial intra- and intercellular movements are also actin dependent and rely on the actin nucleating Arp2/3 complex, which is activated by host-derived nucleation-promoting factors downstream of the cell receptor Met during entry and by the bacterial nucleation-promoting factor ActA during comet tail formation. By genome-wide ...

  10. Resonantly enhanced filamentation in gases

    Doussot, J; Billard, F; Béjot, P; Faucher, O

    2016-01-01

    In this Letter, a low-loss Kerr-driven optical filament in Krypton gas is experimentally reported in the ultraviolet. The experimental findings are supported by ab initio quantum calculations describing the atomic optical response. Higher-order Kerr effect induced by three-photon resonant transitions is identified as the underlying physical mechanism responsible for the intensity stabilization during the filamentation process, while ionization plays only a minor role. This result goes beyond the commonly-admitted paradigm of filamentation, in which ionization is a necessary condition of the filament intensity clamping. At resonance, it is also experimentally demonstrated that the filament length is greatly extended because of a strong decrease of the optical losses.

  11. A second actin-like MamK protein in Magnetospirillum magneticum AMB-1 encoded outside the genomic magnetosome island.

    Jean-Baptiste Rioux

    Full Text Available Magnetotactic bacteria are able to swim navigating along geomagnetic field lines. They synthesize ferromagnetic nanocrystals that are embedded in cytoplasmic membrane invaginations forming magnetosomes. Regularly aligned in the cytoplasm along cytoskeleton filaments, the magnetosome chain effectively forms a compass needle bestowing on bacteria their magnetotactic behaviour. A large genomic island, conserved among magnetotactic bacteria, contains the genes potentially involved in magnetosome formation. One of the genes, mamK has been described as encoding a prokaryotic actin-like protein which when it polymerizes forms in the cytoplasm filamentous structures that provide the scaffold for magnetosome alignment. Here, we have identified a series of genes highly similar to the mam genes in the genome of Magnetospirillum magneticum AMB-1. The newly annotated genes are clustered in a genomic islet distinct and distant from the known magnetosome genomic island and most probably acquired by lateral gene transfer rather than duplication. We focused on a mamK-like gene whose product shares 54.5% identity with the actin-like MamK. Filament bundles of polymerized MamK-like protein were observed in vitro with electron microscopy and in vivo in E. coli cells expressing MamK-like-Venus fusions by fluorescence microscopy. In addition, we demonstrate that mamK-like is transcribed in AMB-1 wild-type and DeltamamK mutant cells and that the actin-like filamentous structures observed in the DeltamamK strain are probably MamK-like polymers. Thus MamK-like is a new member of the prokaryotic actin-like family. This is the first evidence of a functional mam gene encoded outside the magnetosome genomic island.

  12. Insight into the assembly properties and functional organisation of the magnetotactic bacterial actin-like homolog, MamK.

    Sanjiv Sonkaria

    Full Text Available Magnetotactic bacteria (MTB synthesize magnetosomes, which are intracellular vesicles comprising a magnetic particle. A series of magnetosomes arrange themselves in chains to form a magnetic dipole that enables the cell to orient itself along the Earth's magnetic field. MamK, an actin-like homolog of MreB has been identified as a central component in this organisation. Gene deletion, fluorescence microscopy and in vitro studies have yielded mechanistic differences in the filament assembly of MamK with other bacterial cytoskeletal proteins within the cell. With little or no information on the structural and behavioural characteristics of MamK outside the cell, the mamK gene from Magnetospirillium gryphiswaldense was cloned and expressed to better understand the differences in the cytoskeletal properties with its bacterial homologues MreB and acitin. Despite the low sequence identity shared between MamK and MreB (22% and actin (18%, the behaviour of MamK monitored by light scattering broadly mirrored that of its bacterial cousin MreB primarily in terms of its pH, salt, divalent metal-ion and temperature dependency. The broad size variability of MamK filaments revealed by light scattering studies was supported by transmission electron microscopy (TEM imaging. Filament morphology however, indicated that MamK conformed to linearly orientated filaments that appeared to be distinctly dissimilar compared to MreB suggesting functional differences between these homologues. The presence of a nucleotide binding domain common to actin-like proteins was demonstrated by its ability to function both as an ATPase and GTPase. Circular dichroism and structural homology modelling showed that MamK adopts a protein fold that is consistent with the 'classical' actin family architecture but with notable structural differences within the smaller domains, the active site region and the overall surface electrostatic potential.

  13. Evaluation of actinic cheilitis using fluorescence lifetime spectroscopy

    Saito Nogueira, Marcelo; Cosci, Alessandro; Pratavieira, Sebastião.; Takahama, Ademar; Souza Azevedo, Rebeca; Kurachi, Cristina

    2016-03-01

    Actinic cheilitis is a potentially malignant disorder that mostly affects the vermilion border of the lower lip and can lead to squamous cell carcinoma. Because of its heterogeneous clinical aspect, it is difficult to indicate representative biopsy area. Late diagnosis is a limiting factor of therapeutic possibilities available to treat oral cancer. The diagnosis of actinic cheilitis is mainly based on clinical and histopathological analysis and it is a time consuming procedure to get the results. Information about the organization and chemical composition of the tissues can be obtained using fluorescence lifetime spectroscopy techniques without the need for biopsy. The main targeted fluorophores are NADH (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide) and FAD (flavin adenine dinucleotide), which have free and bound states, each one with different average lifetimes. The average lifetimes for free and bound NADH and FAD change according to tissue metabolic alterations and allow a quick and non-invasive clinical investigation of injuries and to help clinicians with the early diagnosis of actinic cheilitis. This study aims to evaluate the fluorescence lifetime parameters at the discrimination of three degrees of epithelial dysplasia, the most important predictor of malignant development, described in up to 100% of actinic cheilitis cases.

  14. Myosin light chain phosphorylation enhances contraction of heart muscle via structural changes in both thick and thin filaments.

    Kampourakis, Thomas; Sun, Yin-Biao; Irving, Malcolm

    2016-05-24

    Contraction of heart muscle is triggered by calcium binding to the actin-containing thin filaments but modulated by structural changes in the myosin-containing thick filaments. We used phosphorylation of the myosin regulatory light chain (cRLC) by the cardiac isoform of its specific kinase to elucidate mechanisms of thick filament-mediated contractile regulation in demembranated trabeculae from the rat right ventricle. cRLC phosphorylation enhanced active force and its calcium sensitivity and altered thick filament structure as reported by bifunctional rhodamine probes on the cRLC: the myosin head domains became more perpendicular to the filament axis. The effects of cRLC phosphorylation on thick filament structure and its calcium sensitivity were mimicked by increasing sarcomere length or by deleting the N terminus of the cRLC. Changes in thick filament structure were highly cooperative with respect to either calcium concentration or extent of cRLC phosphorylation. Probes on unphosphorylated myosin heads reported similar structural changes when neighboring heads were phosphorylated, directly demonstrating signaling between myosin heads. Moreover probes on troponin showed that calcium sensitization by cRLC phosphorylation is mediated by the thin filament, revealing a signaling pathway between thick and thin filaments that is still present when active force is blocked by Blebbistatin. These results show that coordinated and cooperative structural changes in the thick and thin filaments are fundamental to the physiological regulation of contractility in the heart. This integrated dual-filament concept of contractile regulation may aid understanding of functional effects of mutations in the protein components of both filaments associated with heart disease. PMID:27162358

  15. The link between CMEs, filaments and filament channels

    S. F. Martin

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available We present a broad concept for the build-up to eruptive solar events which needs to be tested in future observational and theoretical research. In this concept an eruptive solar event consists of a coronal mass ejection, a filament eruption, a cavity around the filament, and a flare. In our picture, the initial energy source must be external to this eruptive system but also feed into it. Among all eruptive events the common denominator is a filament channel with canceling magnetic fields along a primary polarity reversal boundary. We find that magnetic reconnection at or close to the photosphere is the only interpretation of canceling fields to date that is consistent with observations of filament channels. This reconnection serves to transfer magnetic flux from the photosphere into the chromosphere and corona along polarity reversal boundaries and concurrently initiates the building of a filament channel. Magnetic flux, in excess of that needed to sustain the filament channel, goes into building a filament magnetic field that is always aligned with the polarity reversal boundary and the channel magnetic field. The filament magnetic field remains separated from overarching coronal magnetic fields by the magnetic field of the cavity. The magnetic flux being transported upward from the photosphere/chromosphere carries streams of plasma into the corona along the filament magnetic field. However, the flowing and counterstreaming filament mass also slowly drains out of the field and thereby leaves behind new strands of cavity magnetic field with little or no associated mass. When the build-up of magnetic pressure in the filament and cavity magnetic fields exceeds that of the overlying coronal loops, the coronal loops, the filament and the cavity together begin an observable slow rise which can last a few hours to many days before rapid onset and ejection with a solar flare. We suggest that this process can be accelerated by any number of external

  16. Actin bundles cross-linked with [Formula: see text]-actinin studied by nanobeam X-ray diffraction.

    Töpperwien, M; Priebe, M; Salditt, T

    2016-07-01

    We have performed scanning nano-beam small-angle X-ray scattering (nano-SAXS) experiments on in vitro-formed actin filaments cross-linked with [Formula: see text]-actinin. The experimental method combines a high resolution in reciprocal space with a real space resolution as given by the spot-size of the nano-focused X-ray beam, and opens up new opportunities to study local super-molecular structures of actin filaments. In this first proof-of-concept, we show that the local orientation of actin bundles formed by the cross-linking can be visualized by the X-ray darkfield maps. The filament bundles give rise to highly anisotropic diffraction patterns showing distinct streaks perpendicular to the bundle axes. Interestingly, some diffraction patterns exhibit a fine structure in the form of intensity modulations allowing for a more detailed analysis of the order within the bundles. A first empirical quantification of these modulations is included in the present work. PMID:26715112

  17. Continuous-Wave Stimulated Emission Depletion Microscope for Imaging Actin Cytoskeleton in Fixed and Live Cells

    Bhanu Neupane

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Stimulated emission depletion (STED microscopy provides a new opportunity to study fine sub-cellular structures and highly dynamic cellular processes, which are challenging to observe using conventional optical microscopy. Using actin as an example, we explored the feasibility of using a continuous wave (CW-STED microscope to study the fine structure and dynamics in fixed and live cells. Actin plays an important role in cellular processes, whose functioning involves dynamic formation and reorganization of fine structures of actin filaments. Frequently used confocal fluorescence and STED microscopy dyes were employed to image fixed PC-12 cells (dyed with phalloidin- fluorescein isothiocyante and live rat chondrosarcoma cells (RCS transfected with actin-green fluorescent protein (GFP. Compared to conventional confocal fluorescence microscopy, CW-STED microscopy shows improved spatial resolution in both fixed and live cells. We were able to monitor cell morphology changes continuously; however, the number of repetitive analyses were limited primarily by the dyes used in these experiments and could be improved with the use of dyes less susceptible to photobleaching. In conclusion, CW-STED may disclose new information for biological systems with a proper characteristic length scale. The challenges of using CW-STED microscopy to study cell structures are discussed.

  18. Transgenic overexpression of γ-cytoplasmic actin protects against eccentric contraction-induced force loss in mdx mice

    Baltgalvis Kristen A

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background γ-cytoplasmic (γ-cyto actin levels are elevated in dystrophin-deficient mdx mouse skeletal muscle. The purpose of this study was to determine whether further elevation of γ-cyto actin levels improve or exacerbate the dystrophic phenotype of mdx mice. Methods We transgenically overexpressed γ-cyto actin, specifically in skeletal muscle of mdx mice (mdx-TG, and compared skeletal muscle pathology and force-generating capacity between mdx and mdx-TG mice at different ages. We investigated the mechanism by which γ-cyto actin provides protection from force loss by studying the role of calcium channels and stretch-activated channels in isolated skeletal muscles and muscle fibers. Analysis of variance or independent t-tests were used to detect statistical differences between groups. Results Levels of γ-cyto actin in mdx-TG skeletal muscle were elevated 200-fold compared to mdx skeletal muscle and incorporated into thin filaments. Overexpression of γ-cyto actin had little effect on most parameters of mdx muscle pathology. However, γ-cyto actin provided statistically significant protection against force loss during eccentric contractions. Store-operated calcium entry across the sarcolemma did not differ between mdx fibers compared to wild-type fibers. Additionally, the omission of extracellular calcium or the addition of streptomycin to block stretch-activated channels did not improve the force-generating capacity of isolated extensor digitorum longus muscles from mdx mice during eccentric contractions. Conclusions The data presented in this study indicate that upregulation of γ-cyto actin in dystrophic skeletal muscle can attenuate force loss during eccentric contractions and that the mechanism is independent of activation of stretch-activated channels and the accumulation of extracellular calcium.

  19. Correlated light and electron microscopy observations of the uterine epithelial cell actin cytoskeleton using fluorescently labeled resin-embedded sections.

    Moore, Chad L; Cheng, Delfine; Shami, Gerald J; Murphy, Christopher R

    2016-05-01

    In order to perform correlative light and electron microscopy (CLEM) more precisely, we have modified existing specimen preparation protocols allowing fluorescence retention within embedded and sectioned tissue, facilitating direct observation across length scales. We detail a protocol which provides a precise correlation accuracy using accessible techniques in biological specimen preparation. By combining a pre-embedding uranyl acetate staining step with the progressive lowering of temperature (PLT) technique, a methacrylate embedded tissue specimen is ultrathin sectioned and mounted onto a TEM finder grid for immediate viewing in the confocal and electron microscope. In this study, the protocol is applied to rat uterine epithelial cells in vivo during early pregnancy. Correlative overlay data was used to track changes in filamentous actin that occurs in these cells from fertilization (Day 1) to implantation on Day 6 as part of the plasma membrane transformation, a process essential in the development of uterine receptivity in the rat. CLEM confirmed that the actin cytoskeleton is disrupted as apical microvilli are progressively lost toward implantation, and revealed the thick and continuous terminal web is replaced by a thinner and irregular actin band, with individually distinguishable filaments connecting actin meshworks which correspond with remaining plasma membrane protrusions. PMID:26930006

  20. The Intriguing Dual Lattices of the Myosin Filaments in Vertebrate Striated Muscles: Evolution and Advantage

    Pradeep K. Luther

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Myosin filaments in vertebrate striated muscle have a long roughly cylindrical backbone with cross-bridge projections on the surfaces of both halves except for a short central bare zone. In the middle of this central region the filaments are cross-linked by the M-band which holds them in a well-defined hexagonal lattice in the muscle A-band. During muscular contraction the M-band-defined rotation of the myosin filaments around their long axes influences the interactions that the cross-bridges can make with the neighbouring actin filaments. We can visualise this filament rotation by electron microscopy of thin cross-sections in the bare-region immediately adjacent to the M-band where the filament profiles are distinctly triangular. In the muscles of teleost fishes, the thick filament triangular profiles have a single orientation giving what we call the simple lattice. In other vertebrates, for example all the tetrapods, the thick filaments have one of two orientations where the triangles point in opposite directions (they are rotated by 60° or 180° according to set rules. Such a distribution cannot be developed in an ordered fashion across a large 2D lattice, but there are small domains of superlattice such that the next-nearest neighbouring thick filaments often have the same orientation. We believe that this difference in the lattice forms can lead to different contractile behaviours. Here we provide a historical review, and when appropriate cite recent work related to the emergence of the simple and superlattice forms by examining the muscles of several species ranging back to primitive vertebrates and we discuss the functional differences that the two lattice forms may have.

  1. Activity Cycle of Solar Filaments

    K. J. Li; Q. X. Li; P. X. Gao; J. Mu; H. D. Chen; T. W. Su

    2007-06-01

    Long-term variation in the distribution of the solar filaments observed at the Observatorie de Paris, Section de Meudon from March 1919 to December 1989 is presented to compare with sunspot cycle and to study the periodicity in the filament activity, namely the periods of the coronal activity with the Morlet wavelet used. It is inferred that the activity cycle of solar filaments should have the same cycle length as sunspot cycle, but the cycle behavior of solar filaments is globally similar in profile with, but different in detail from, that of sunspot cycles. The amplitude of solar magnetic activity should not keep in phase with the complexity of solar magnetic activity. The possible periods in the filament activity are about 10.44 and 19.20 years. The wavelet local power spectrum of the period 10.44 years is statistically significant during the whole consideration time. The wavelet local power spectrum of the period 19.20 years is under the 95% confidence spectrum during the whole consideration time, but over the mean red-noise spectrum of = 0.72 before approximate Carrington rotation number 1500, and after that the filament activity does not statistically show the period. Wavelet reconstruction indicates that the early data of the filament archive (in and before cycle 16) are more noiseful than the later (in and after cycle 17).

  2. ADAPTIVE ANTENNA REFLECTOR BASED ON FILAMENT WINDING TECHNOLOGY%基于纤维缠绕技术的自适应天线反射器

    陶云刚; Tobias; Melz

    2001-01-01

    The modern information society continuously demands for larger communication capacities.These demands can be met by developing higher telecommunication frequencies.With this goal and modern communication technology basing on satellite systems with reflector antennas,a new structural design concept of a satellite antenna reflector as an adaptive structural system is being developed.In this article the manufacturing of such a parabolic central focus sandwich reflector of a diameter of 900mm with intermediate modulus carbon fibre/epoxy face sheets and aluminium honeycomb core with integrated actuators will be introduced.The fabrication of the actuator packages,the filament winding process and the assembly of the actuators will be presented.With this paper the authors intend to introduce this new design concept as a promising technique to realise lightweight,by means of active control thermally highly stable and economic reflector structures for future communicaiton applications.%现代信息社会越来越需要更大的通讯能力,这种需要可通过发展更高的远程通讯频率来满足,为实现此目的,使用发射天线的卫星通讯系统。德国宇航研究院结构力学研究所正在研制一种新的、用于卫星天线发射器的自适应结构体系。本文介绍了一种直径为900毫米的抛物面型叠层发射器的制造工艺。该卫星天线发射器叠层材料为中等弹性模量的碳纤维--环氧树脂面板和带有集成激励控制驱动器的铝蜂窝夹芯。并将给出驱动器封装的制造,纤维缠绕过程和驱动器的装配方法。本文介绍了这一新的设计思想和具有高效控制,高热稳定性及经济的、重量轻的自适应智能天线反射器结构。

  3. Par-4-mediated recruitment of Amida to the actin cytoskeleton leads to the induction of apoptosis

    Par-4 (prostate apoptosis response-4) sensitizes cells to apoptotic stimuli, but the exact mechanisms are still poorly understood. Using Par-4 as bait in a yeast two-hybrid screen, we identified Amida as a novel interaction partner, a ubiquitously expressed protein which has been suggested to be involved in apoptotic processes. Complex formation of Par-4 and Amida occurs in vitro and in vivo and is mediated via the C-termini of both proteins, involving the leucine zipper of Par-4. Amida resides mainly in the nucleus but displays nucleo-cytoplasmic shuttling in heterokaryons. Upon coexpression with Par-4 in REF52.2 cells, Amida translocates to the cytoplasm and is recruited to actin filaments by Par-4, resulting in enhanced induction of apoptosis. The synergistic effect of Amida/Par-4 complexes on the induction of apoptosis is abrogated when either Amida/Par-4 complex formation or association of these complexes with the actin cytoskeleton is impaired, indicating that the Par-4-mediated relocation of Amida to the actin cytoskeleton is crucial for the pro-apoptotic function of Par-4/Amida complexes in REF52.2 cells. The latter results in enhanced phosphorylation of the regulatory light chain of myosin II (MLC) as has previously been shown for Par-4-mediated recruitment of DAP-like kinase (Dlk), suggesting that the recruitment of nuclear proteins involved in the regulation of apoptotic processes to the actin filament system by Par-4 represents a potent mechanism how Par-4 can trigger apoptosis

  4. Computational and theoretical modeling of intermediate filament networks:Structure, mechanics and disease

    Zhao Qin; Markus J. Buehler

    2012-01-01

    Intermediate filaments,in addition to microtubules and actin microfilaments,are one of the three major components of the cytoskeleton in eukaryotic cells.It was discovered during the recent decades that in most cells,intermediate filament proteins play key roles to reinforce cells subjected to large-deformation,and that they participate in signal transduction,and it was proposed that their nanomechanical properties are critical to perform those functions.However,it is still poorly understood how the nanoscopic structure,as well as the combination of chemical composition,molecular structure and interfacial properties of these protein molecules contribute to the biomechanical properties of filaments and filament networks. Here we review recent progress in computational and theoretical studies of the intermediate filaments network at various levels in the protein's structure. A multiple scale method is discussed,used to couple molecular modeling with atomistic detail to larger-scale material properties of the networked material. It is shown that a finer-trains-coarser methodology as discussed here provides a useful tool in understanding the biomechanical property and disease mechanism of intermediate filaments,coupling experiment and simulation. It further allows us to improve the understanding of associated disease mechanisms and lays the foundation for engineering the mechanical properties of biomaterials.

  5. Membrane Tension Acts Through PLD2 and mTORC2 to Limit Actin Network Assembly During Neutrophil Migration

    Diz-Muñoz, Alba; Thurley, Kevin; Chintamen, Sana; Altschuler, Steven J.; Fletcher, Daniel A.; Weiner, Orion D.

    2016-01-01

    For efficient polarity and migration, cells need to regulate the magnitude and spatial distribution of actin assembly. This process is coordinated by reciprocal interactions between the actin cytoskeleton and mechanical forces. Actin polymerization-based protrusion increases tension in the plasma membrane, which in turn acts as a long-range inhibitor of actin assembly. These interactions form a negative feedback circuit that limits the magnitude of membrane tension in neutrophils and prevents expansion of the existing front and the formation of secondary fronts. It has been suggested that the plasma membrane directly inhibits actin assembly by serving as a physical barrier that opposes protrusion. Here we show that efficient control of actin polymerization-based protrusion requires an additional mechanosensory feedback cascade that indirectly links membrane tension with actin assembly. Specifically, elevated membrane tension acts through phospholipase D2 (PLD2) and the mammalian target of rapamycin complex 2 (mTORC2) to limit actin nucleation. In the absence of this pathway, neutrophils exhibit larger leading edges, higher membrane tension, and profoundly defective chemotaxis. Mathematical modeling suggests roles for both the direct (mechanical) and indirect (biochemical via PLD2 and mTORC2) feedback loops in organizing cell polarity and motility—the indirect loop is better suited to enable competition between fronts, whereas the direct loop helps spatially organize actin nucleation for efficient leading edge formation and cell movement. This circuit is essential for polarity, motility, and the control of membrane tension. PMID:27280401

  6. Statistics of actin-propelled trajectories in noisy environments.

    Wen, Fu-Lai; Chen, Hsuan-Yi; Leung, Kwan-Tai

    2016-06-01

    Actin polymerization is ubiquitously utilized to power the locomotion of eukaryotic cells and pathogenic bacteria in living systems. Inevitably, actin polymerization and depolymerization proceed in a fluctuating environment that renders the locomotion stochastic. Previously, we have introduced a deterministic model that manages to reproduce actin-propelled trajectories in experiments, but not to address fluctuations around them. To remedy this, here we supplement the deterministic model with noise terms. It enables us to compute the effects of fluctuating actin density and forces on the trajectories. Specifically, the mean-squared displacement (MSD) of the trajectories is computed and found to show a super-ballistic scaling with an exponent 3 in the early stage, followed by a crossover to a normal, diffusive scaling of exponent 1 in the late stage. For open-end trajectories such as straights and S-shaped curves, the time of crossover matches the decay time of orientational order of the velocities along trajectories, suggesting that it is the spreading of velocities that leads to the crossover. We show that the super-ballistic scaling of MSD arises from the initial, linearly increasing correlation of velocities, before time translational symmetry is established. When the spreading of velocities reaches a steady state in the long-time limit, short-range correlation then yields a diffusive scaling in MSD. In contrast, close-loop trajectories like circles exhibit localized periodic motion, which inhibits spreading. The initial super-ballistic scaling of MSD arises from velocity correlation that both linearly increases and oscillates in time. Finally, we find that the above statistical features of the trajectories transcend the nature of noises, be it additive or multiplicative, and generalize to other self-propelled systems that are not necessarily actin based. PMID:27415296

  7. Statistics of actin-propelled trajectories in noisy environments

    Wen, Fu-Lai; Chen, Hsuan-Yi; Leung, Kwan-tai

    2016-06-01

    Actin polymerization is ubiquitously utilized to power the locomotion of eukaryotic cells and pathogenic bacteria in living systems. Inevitably, actin polymerization and depolymerization proceed in a fluctuating environment that renders the locomotion stochastic. Previously, we have introduced a deterministic model that manages to reproduce actin-propelled trajectories in experiments, but not to address fluctuations around them. To remedy this, here we supplement the deterministic model with noise terms. It enables us to compute the effects of fluctuating actin density and forces on the trajectories. Specifically, the mean-squared displacement (MSD) of the trajectories is computed and found to show a super-ballistic scaling with an exponent 3 in the early stage, followed by a crossover to a normal, diffusive scaling of exponent 1 in the late stage. For open-end trajectories such as straights and S-shaped curves, the time of crossover matches the decay time of orientational order of the velocities along trajectories, suggesting that it is the spreading of velocities that leads to the crossover. We show that the super-ballistic scaling of MSD arises from the initial, linearly increasing correlation of velocities, before time translational symmetry is established. When the spreading of velocities reaches a steady state in the long-time limit, short-range correlation then yields a diffusive scaling in MSD. In contrast, close-loop trajectories like circles exhibit localized periodic motion, which inhibits spreading. The initial super-ballistic scaling of MSD arises from velocity correlation that both linearly increases and oscillates in time. Finally, we find that the above statistical features of the trajectories transcend the nature of noises, be it additive or multiplicative, and generalize to other self-propelled systems that are not necessarily actin based.

  8. Erbium laser resurfacing for actinic cheilitis.

    Cohen, Joel L

    2013-11-01

    Actinic cheilitis is a precancerous condition characterized by grayish-whitish area(s) of discoloration on the mucosal lip, often blunting the demarcation between mucosa and cutaneous lip. Actinic cheilitis is considered to be an early part of the spectrum of squamous cell carcinoma. Squamous cell carcinoma specifically of the lip has a high rate of recurrence and metastasis through the oral cavity leading to a poor overall survival. Risk factors for the development of actinic cheilitis include chronic solar irradiation, increasing age, male gender, light skin complexion, immunosuppression, and possibly tobacco and alcohol consumption. Treatment options include topical pharmacotherapy (eg, fluorouracil, imiquimod) or procedural interventions (eg, cryotherapy, electrosurgery, surgical vermillionectomy, laser resurfacing), each with their known advantages and disadvantages. There is little consensus as to which treatment options offer the most clinical utility given the paucity of comparative clinical data. In my practice, laser resurfacing has become an important tool for the treatment of actinic cheilitis owing to its ease of use and overall safety, tolerability, and cosmetic acceptability. Herein the use of erbium laser resurfacing is described for three actinic cheilitis presentations for which I find it particularly useful: clinically prominent actinic cheilitis, biopsy-proven actinic cheilitis, and treatment of the entire lip following complete tumor excision of squamous cell carcinoma. All patients were treated with a 2940-nm erbium laser (Sciton Profile Contour Tunable Resurfacing Laser [TRL], Sciton, Inc., Palo Alto, CA). PMID:24196339

  9. Automated detection, characterization, and tracking of filaments from SDO data

    Buchlin, Eric; Vial, Jean-Claude; Mercier, Claude

    2016-07-01

    Thanks to the cadence and continuity of AIA and HMI observations, SDO offers unique data for detecting, characterizing, and tracking solar filaments, until their eruptions, which are often associated with coronal mass ejections. Because of the requirement of short latency when aiming at space weather applications, and because of the important data volume, only an automated detection can be worked out. We present the code "FILaments, Eruptions, and Activations detected from Space" (FILEAS) that we have developed for the automated detection and tracking of filaments. Detections are based on the analysis of AIA 30.4 nm He II images and on the magnetic polarity inversion lines derived from HMI. Following the tracking of filaments as they rotate with the Sun, filament characteristics are computed and a database of filaments parameters is built. We present the algorithms and performances of the code, and we compare its results with the filaments detected in Hα and already present in the Heliophysics Events Knowledgebase. We finally discuss the possibility of using such a code to detect eruptions in real time.

  10. Actinic Granuloma with Focal Segmental Glomerulosclerosis

    Ruedee Phasukthaworn

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Actinic granuloma is an uncommon granulomatous disease, characterized by annular erythematous plaque with central clearing predominately located on sun-damaged skin. The pathogenesis is not well understood, ultraviolet radiation is recognized as precipitating factor. We report a case of a 52-year-old woman who presented with asymptomatic annular erythematous plaques on the forehead and both cheeks persisting for 2 years. The clinical presentation and histopathologic findings support the diagnosis of actinic granuloma. During that period of time, she also developed focal segmental glomerulosclerosis. The association between actinic granuloma and focal segmental glomerulosclerosis needs to be clarified by further studies.

  11. Laser Filament Induced Water Condensation

    Kasparian J.; Webe K.; Vogel A; Petit Y.; Lüder J.; Hao Z.Q.; Rohwetter P.; Petrarca M.; Stelmaszczyk K.; Henin S.; Wöste L.; Wolf J.-P.

    2013-01-01

    At relative humidities above 70%, femtosecond laser filaments generate aerosol particles and water droplets in the atmosphere. The water vapour condensation and droplet stabilization are assured by soluble species produced in the laser plasma.

  12. Cloning and sequence analysis of β-actin gene from Aedes albopictus (Diptera: Culicidae)

    Weijie Wang; Xiaobang Hu; Donghui Zhang; Jianhua Jiao; Yan Sun; Lei Ma; Changliang Zhu

    2007-01-01

    Objective: To obtain the complete β-actin gene from Aedes albopictus. Methods: Total RNA was extracted from C6/36 cells. Degenerate primers were designed based on the β-actin sequences of An. gambiae, Ae. aegypti, Cx. pipiens pallens and D.melanogaster. By RT-PCR, the product was amplified, purified, cloned into the pGT vector and sequenced. The β-actin sequence was aligned and phylogenetically analyzed by the BLAST program and the CLUSTAL W program. Results: A sequence of 1132 bp including an open reading frame of 1131 bp was obtained (GenBank DQ657949). The deduced protein had 376 amino acids.Aligned to SWISS-PROT, it exhibited a high level of identity with β-actins from Anopheles, Drosophila and Culex at the amino acid sequence level. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that Ae. albopictus β-actin was much more homologous with invertebrate β-actin than with vertebrate β-actin. Conclusion: The gene may be used as the internal control in the experiments of Ae. albopictus.

  13. Is there a relationship between phosphatidylinositol trisphosphate and F-actin polymerization in human neutrophils

    Stimulation of human neutrophils with the chemoattractant N-formyl peptide caused rapid polymerization of F-actin as detected by right angle light scatter and 7-nitrobenz-2-oxa-1,3-diazol (NBD)-phallacidin staining of F-actin. After labeling neutrophils with 32P, exposure to N-formyl peptide induced a fast decrease of phosphatidylinositol 4-bisphosphate (PIP)2, a slow increase of phosphatidic acid, and a rapid rise of phosphatidylinositol 4-trisphosphate (PIP3). Formation of PIP3 as well as actin polymerization was near maximal at 10 s after stimulation. Half-maximal response and PIP3 formation at early time points resulted from stimulation of neutrophils with 0.01 nM N-formyl peptide or occupation of about 200 receptors. Sustained elevation of PIP3, prolonged right angle light scatter response, and F-actin formation required higher concentrations of N-formyl peptide, occupation of thousands of receptors, and high binding rates. When ligand binding was interrupted with an antagonist, F-actin rapidly depolymerized, transient light scatter response recovered immediately, and elevated [32P]PIP3 levels decayed toward initial values. However, recovery of [32P]PIP2 was not influenced by the antagonist. Based on the parallel time courses and dose response of [32P] PIP3, the right angle light scatter response, and F-actin polymerization, PIP3 is more likely than PIP2 to be involved in modulation of actin polymerization and depolymerization in vivo

  14. Role of cyclic nucleotide-dependent actin cytoskeletal dynamics:Ca(2+](i and force suppression in forskolin-pretreated porcine coronary arteries.

    Kyle M Hocking

    Full Text Available Initiation of force generation during vascular smooth muscle contraction involves a rise in intracellular calcium ([Ca(2+]i and phosphorylation of myosin light chains (MLC. However, reversal of these two processes alone does not account for the force inhibition that occurs during relaxation or inhibition of contraction, implicating that other mechanisms, such as actin cytoskeletal rearrangement, play a role in the suppression of force. In this study, we hypothesize that forskolin-induced force suppression is dependent upon changes in actin cytoskeletal dynamics. To focus on the actin cytoskeletal changes, a physiological model was developed in which forskolin treatment of intact porcine coronary arteries (PCA prior to treatment with a contractile agonist resulted in complete suppression of force. Pretreatment of PCA with forskolin suppressed histamine-induced force generation but did not abolish [Ca(2+]i rise or MLC phosphorylation. Additionally, forskolin pretreatment reduced filamentous actin in histamine-treated tissues, and prevented histamine-induced changes in the phosphorylation of the actin-regulatory proteins HSP20, VASP, cofilin, and paxillin. Taken together, these results suggest that forskolin-induced complete force suppression is dependent upon the actin cytoskeletal regulation initiated by the phosphorylation changes of the actin regulatory proteins and not on the MLC dephosphorylation. This model of complete force suppression can be employed to further elucidate the mechanisms responsible for smooth muscle tone, and may offer cues to pathological situations, such as hypertension and vasospasm.

  15. Microcyle Conidiation in Filamentous Fungi

    Jung, Boknam; Kim, Soyeon; Lee, Jungkwan

    2014-01-01

    The typical life cycle of filamentous fungi commonly involves asexual sporulation after vegetative growth in response to environmental factors. The production of asexual spores is critical in the life cycle of most filamentous fungi. Normally, conidia are produced from vegetative hyphae (termed mycelia). However, fungal species subjected to stress conditions exhibit an extremely simplified asexual life cycle, in which the conidia that germinate directly generate further conidia, without formi...

  16. Molecular mechanism of bundle formation by the bacterial actin ParM

    Popp, David, E-mail: dpopp@imcb.a-star.edu.sg [ERATO ' Actin Filament Dynamics' Project, Japan Science and Technology Corporation, c/o RIKEN Harima Institute at Spring 8, 1-1-1 Kouto, Sayo, Hyogo 679-5148 (Japan); Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology, 61 Biopolis Drive, Proteos, 138673 Singapore (Singapore); Narita, Akihiro [ERATO ' Actin Filament Dynamics' Project, Japan Science and Technology Corporation, c/o RIKEN Harima Institute at Spring 8, 1-1-1 Kouto, Sayo, Hyogo 679-5148 (Japan); Nagoya University Graduate School of Science, Structural Biology Research Center and Division of Biological Sciences, Furo-cho, Chikusa-ku, Nagoya 464-8601 (Japan); Iwasa, Mitsusada [ERATO ' Actin Filament Dynamics' Project, Japan Science and Technology Corporation, c/o RIKEN Harima Institute at Spring 8, 1-1-1 Kouto, Sayo, Hyogo 679-5148 (Japan); Maeda, Yuichiro [ERATO ' Actin Filament Dynamics' Project, Japan Science and Technology Corporation, c/o RIKEN Harima Institute at Spring 8, 1-1-1 Kouto, Sayo, Hyogo 679-5148 (Japan); Nagoya University Graduate School of Science, Structural Biology Research Center and Division of Biological Sciences, Furo-cho, Chikusa-ku, Nagoya 464-8601 (Japan); Robinson, Robert C. [Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology, 61 Biopolis Drive, Proteos, 138673 Singapore (Singapore)

    2010-01-22

    The actin homolog ParM plays a microtubule-like role in segregating DNA prior to bacterial cell division. Fluorescence and cryo-electron microscopy have shown that ParM forms filament bundles between separating DNA plasmids in vivo. Given the lack of ParM bundling proteins it remains unknown how ParM bundles form at the molecular level. Here we show using time-lapse TIRF microscopy, under in vitro molecular crowding conditions, that ParM-bundle formation consists of two distinct phases. At the onset of polymerization bundle thickness and shape are determined in the form of nuclei of short helically disordered filaments arranged in a liquid-like lattice. These nuclei then undergo an elongation phase whereby they rapidly increase in length. At steady state, ParM bundles fuse into one single large aggregate. This behavior had been predicted by theory but has not been observed for any other cytomotive biopolymer, including F-actin. We employed electron micrographs of ParM rafts, which are 2-D analogs of 3-D bundles, to identify the main molecular interfilament contacts within these suprastructures. The interface between filaments is similar for both parallel and anti-parallel orientations and the distribution of filament polarity is random within a bundle. We suggest that the interfilament interactions are not due to the interactions of specific residues but rather to long-range, counter ion mediated, electrostatic attractive forces. A randomly oriented bundle ensures that the assembly is rigid and that DNA may be captured with equal efficiency at both ends of the bundle via the ParR binding protein.

  17. Star formation efficiency in the outer filaments of Centaurus A

    Salomé, Q.; Salomé, P.; Combes, F.; Hamer, S.; Heywood, I.

    2015-12-01

    We present a multi-wavelength study of the northern filaments of Centaurus A (at a distance of ˜ 20 kpc from the galaxy center) based on FUV (GALEX), FIR (Herschel) and CO (SEST and ALMA) emission. We also searched for HCN and HCO^+ (ATCA) and observed optical emission lines (VLT/MUSE) in different places of the filament. An upper limit of the dense gas of L'_{HCN}inhibits star formation.

  18. Scrape Off Layer profiles interpreted with filament dynamics

    Militello, F

    2016-01-01

    A theoretical framework is developed to link the density profiles in the Scrape Off Layer (SOL) with the fluctuations (filaments) that generate them. The framework is based on the dynamics of independent filaments and their statistical behaviour and can be used to rigorously understand the mechanisms that lead to flattening and broadening of the SOL profiles as well as the radial increase of the relative fluctuation amplitude.

  19. Inverse relationship between TCTP/RhoA and p53/ /cyclin A/actin expression in ovarian cancer cells Inverse relationship between TCTP/RhoA and p53/ /cyclin A/actin expression in ovarian cancer cells

    Malgorzata Kloc

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available The translationally controlled tumor protein (TCTP plays a role in cell growth, cell cycle and cancer
    progression. TCTP controls negatively the stability of the p53 tumor suppressor protein and interacts with the
    cellular cytoskeleton. The deregulation of the actin and cytokeratin cytoskeleton is responsible for the increased
    migratory activity of tumor cells and is linked with poor patient outcome. Recent studies indicate that cyclin A,
    a key regulator of cell cycle, controls actin organization and negatively regulates cell motility via regulation of RhoA
    expression. We studied the organization of actin and cytokeratin cytoskeleton and the expression of TCTP, p53,
    cyclin A, RhoA and actin in HIO180 non-transformed ovarian epithelial cells, and OVCAR3 and SKOV3 (expressing
    low level of inducible p53 ovarian epithelial cancer cells with different metastatic potential. Immunostaining
    and ultrastructural analyses illustrated a dramatic difference in the organization of the cytokeratin and actin
    filaments in non-transformed versus cancer cell lines. We also determined that there is an inverse relationship between
    the level of TCTP/RhoA and actin/p53/cyclin A expression in ovarian cancer cell lines. This previously unidentified
    negative relationship between TCTP/RhoA and actin/p53/cyclin A may suggest that this interaction is linked
    with the high aggressiveness of ovarian cancers.The translationally controlled tumor protein (TCTP plays a role in cell growth, cell cycle and cancer
    progression. TCTP controls negatively the stability of the p53 tumor suppressor protein and interacts with the
    cellular cytoskeleton. The deregulation of the actin and cytokeratin cytoskeleton is responsible for the increased
    migratory activity of tumor cells and is linked with poor patient outcome. Recent studies indicate that cyclin A,
    a key regulator of cell cycle, controls actin organization

  20. Focused ion beam and field-emission microscopy of metallic filaments in memory devices based on thin films of an ambipolar organic compound consisting of oxadiazole, carbazole, and fluorene units

    Pearson, Christopher; Bowen, Leon; Lee, Myung Won; Fisher, Alison L.; Linton, Katherine E.; Bryce, Martin R.; Petty, Michael C.

    2013-01-01

    We report on the mechanism of operation of organic thin film resistive memory architectures based on an ambipolar compound consisting of oxadiazole, carbazole, and fluorene units. Cross-sections of the devices have been imaged by electron microscopy both before and after applying a voltage. The micrographs reveal the growth of filaments, with diameters of 50 nm–100 nm, on the metal cathode. We suggest that these are formed by the drift of aluminium ions from the anode and are responsible for the observed switching and negative differential resistance phenomena in the memory devices.

  1. Asymmetry effects of filament heater current on the ion source performance

    Many ion sources for accelerators are based on filament arc discharge. The source characteristics depend on filament heating mechanisms. Experiments using a single U shape tungsten filament in a plasma source have been carried out to study the discharge characteristics of AC and DC heated filament. During AC heating, modulation of the discharge current as well as the plasma density is observed due to the magnetic field created by the filament heater current. The modulation frequency is twice that of the AC frequency. In case of DC heating, modulation is not observed but two legs of the filament contribute different amount of discharge current which is determined by the internal resistance of the filament power supply. (author)

  2. Reactive oxygen species (ROS)-induced actin glutathionylation controls actin dynamics in neutrophils

    Sakai, Jiro; Li, Jingyu; Subramanian, Kulandayan K.; Mondal, Subhanjan; Bajrami, Besnik; Hattori, Hidenori; Jia, Yonghui; Dickinson, Bryan C; Zhong, Jia; Ye, Keqiang; Chang, Christopher J.; Ho, Ye-Shih; Zhou, Jun; Luo, Hongbo R.

    2012-01-01

    The regulation of actin dynamics is pivotal for cellular processes such as cell adhesion, migration, and phagocytosis, and thus is crucial for neutrophils to fulfill their roles in innate immunity. Many factors have been implicated in signal-induced actin polymerization, however the essential nature of the potential negative modulators are still poorly understood. Here we report that NADPH oxidase-dependent physiologically generated reactive oxygen species (ROS) negatively regulate actin poly...

  3. Nuclear actin levels as an important transcriptional switch

    Huet, Guillaume; Skarp, Kari-Pekka; Vartiainen, Maria K.

    2012-01-01

    Nuclear actin levels have recently been linked to different cellular fates, suggesting that actin could act as a switch between altered transcriptional states. Here we discuss our latest results on the mechanisms by which nuclear actin levels are regulated and their implications to the functional significance of nuclear actin.

  4. Nuclear actin levels as an important transcriptional switch

    Huet, Guillaume; Skarp, Kari-Pekka; Vartiainen, Maria K.

    2012-01-01

    Nuclear actin levels have recently been linked to different cellular fates, suggesting that actin could act as a switch between altered transcriptional states. Here we discuss our latest results on the mechanisms by which nuclear actin levels are regulated and their implications to the functional significance of nuclear actin. PMID:22771994

  5. Actin expression in trypanosomatids (Euglenozoa: Kinetoplastea).

    Souza, Ligia Cristina Kalb; Pinho, Rosana Elisa Gonçalves Gonçalves; Lima, Carla Vanessa de Paula; Fragoso, Stênio Perdigão; Soares, Maurilio José

    2013-08-01

    Heteroxenic and monoxenic trypanosomatids were screened for the presence of actin using a mouse polyclonal antibody produced against the entire sequence of the Trypanosoma cruzi actin gene, encoding a 41.9 kDa protein. Western blot analysis showed that this antibody reacted with a polypeptide of approximately 42 kDa in the whole-cell lysates of parasites targeting mammals (T. cruzi, Trypanosoma brucei and Leishmania major), insects (Angomonas deanei, Crithidia fasciculata, Herpetomonas samuelpessoai and Strigomonas culicis) and plants (Phytomonas serpens). A single polypeptide of approximately 42 kDa was detected in the whole-cell lysates of T. cruzi cultured epimastigotes, metacyclic trypomastigotes and amastigotes at similar protein expression levels. Confocal microscopy showed that actin was expressed throughout the cytoplasm of all the tested trypanosomatids. These data demonstrate that actin expression is widespread in trypanosomatids. PMID:23903980

  6. Actin expression in trypanosomatids (Euglenozoa: Kinetoplastea

    Ligia Cristina Kalb Souza

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Heteroxenic and monoxenic trypanosomatids were screened for the presence of actin using a mouse polyclonal antibody produced against the entire sequence of the Trypanosoma cruzi actin gene, encoding a 41.9 kDa protein. Western blot analysis showed that this antibody reacted with a polypeptide of approximately 42 kDa in the whole-cell lysates of parasites targeting mammals (T. cruzi, Trypanosoma brucei and Leishmania major, insects (Angomonas deanei, Crithidia fasciculata, Herpetomonas samuelpessoai and Strigomonas culicis and plants (Phytomonas serpens. A single polypeptide of approximately 42 kDa was detected in the whole-cell lysates of T. cruzi cultured epimastigotes, metacyclic trypomastigotes and amastigotes at similar protein expression levels. Confocal microscopy showed that actin was expressed throughout the cytoplasm of all the tested trypanosomatids. These data demonstrate that actin expression is widespread in trypanosomatids.

  7. Chronic actinic damage of facial skin.

    Bilaç, Cemal; Şahin, Mustafa Turhan; Öztürkcan, Serap

    2014-01-01

    Chronic actinic damage of the skin manifests itself as extrinsic skin aging (photoaging) and photocarcinogenesis. During the last decade, substantial progress has been made in understanding cellular and molecular mechanisms of photoaging. DNA photodamage and ultraviolet-generated reactive oxygen species are the initial events that lead to most of the typical histologic and clinical manifestations of chronic photodamage of the skin. Chronic actinic damage affects all layers of the skin. Keratinocytes, melanocytes, fibroblasts, and endothelial cells are altered by ultraviolet radiation and can result in numerous changes in human skin, particularly the skin of fair-skinned individuals. These changes include actinic keratosis, thickening and wrinkling, elastosis, telengiectasia, solar comedones, diffuse or mottled hyperpigmentation, and skin cancers. There are many options in the treatment of changes caused by chronic actinic damage. The most effective measure of prevention of the photoaging and photocarcinogenesis is sun protection. PMID:25441468

  8. IFT88 influences chondrocyte actin organization and biomechanics

    Z. Wang; Wann, A.K.T.; Thompson, C L; Hassen, A.; Wang, W; Knight, M.M.

    2016-01-01

    Summary Objectives Primary cilia are microtubule based organelles which control a variety of signalling pathways important in cartilage development, health and disease. This study examines the role of the intraflagellar transport (IFT) protein, IFT88, in regulating fundamental actin organisation and mechanics in articular chondrocytes. Methods The study used an established chondrocyte cell line with and without hypomorphic mutation of IFT88 (IFT88orpk). Confocal microscopy was used to quantif...

  9. Actinic review of EUV masks

    Feldmann, Heiko; Ruoff, Johannes; Harnisch, Wolfgang; Kaiser, Winfried

    2010-04-01

    Management of mask defects is a major challenge for the introduction of EUV for HVM production. Once a defect has been detected, its printing impact needs to be predicted. Potentially the defect requires some repair, the success of which needs to be proven. This defect review has to be done with an actinic inspection system that matches the imaging conditions of an EUV scanner. During recent years, several concepts for such an aerial image metrology system (AIMS™) have been proposed. However, until now no commercial solution exists for EUV. Today, advances in EUV optics technology allow envisioning a solution that has been discarded before as unrealistic. We present this concept and its technical cornerstones.While the power requirement for the EUV source is less demanding than for HVM lithography tools, radiance, floor space, and stability are the main criteria for source selection. The requirement to emulate several generations of EUV scanners demands a large flexibility for the ilumination and imaging systems. New critical specifications to the EUV mirrors in the projection microscope can be satisfied using our expertise from lithographic mirrors. In summary, an EUV AIMS™ meeting production requirements seems to be feasible.

  10. Actin microfilaments are associated with the migrating nucleus and the cell cortex in the green alga Micrasterias. Studies on living cells.

    Meindl, U; Zhang, D; Hepler, P K

    1994-07-01

    Rhodamine-phalloidin or FITC-phalloidin has been injected in small amounts into living, developing cells of Micrasterias denticulata and the stained microfilaments visualized by confocal laser scanning microscopy. The results reveal that two different actin filament systems are present in a growing cell: a cortical actin network that covers the inner surface of the cell and is extended far into the tips of the lobes in both the growing and the nongrowing semicell; it is also associated with the surface of the chloroplast. The second actin system ensheathes the nucleus at the isthmus-facing side during nuclear migration. Its arrangement corresponds to that of the microtubule system that has been described in earlier electron microscopic investigations. The spatial correspondence between the distribution of actin filaments and microtubules suggests a cooperation between both cytoskeleton elements in generating the motive force for nuclear migration. The function of the cortical actin network is not yet clear. It may be involved in processes like transport and fusion of secretory vesicles and may also function in shaping and anchoring the chloroplast. PMID:7983159

  11. Identification of regions within the Legionella pneumophila VipA effector protein involved in actin binding and polymerization and in interference with eukaryotic organelle trafficking.

    Bugalhão, Joana N; Mota, Luís Jaime; Franco, Irina S

    2016-02-01

    The Legionella pneumophila effector protein VipA is an actin nucleator that co-localizes with actin filaments and early endosomes in infected macrophages and which interferes with organelle trafficking when expressed in yeast. To identify the regions of VipA involved in its subcellular localization and functions, we ectopically expressed specific VipA mutant proteins in eukaryotic cells. This indicated that the characteristic punctate distribution of VipA depends on its NH2 -terminal (amino acid residues 1-133) and central coiled-coil (amino acid residues 133-206) regions, and suggested a role for the COOH-terminal (amino acid residues 206-339) region in association with actin filaments and for the NH2 -terminal in co-localization with early endosomes. Co-immunoprecipitation and in vitro assays showed that the COOH-terminal region of VipA is necessary and sufficient to mediate actin binding, and is essential but insufficient to induce microfilament formation. Assays in yeast revealed that the NH2 and the COOH-terminal regions, and possibly an NPY motif within the NH2 region of VipA, are necessary for interference with organelle trafficking. Overall, this suggests that subversion of eukaryotic vesicular trafficking by VipA involves both its ability to associate with early endosomes via its NH2 -terminal region and its capacity to bind and polymerize actin through its COOH-terminal region. PMID:26626407

  12. Hematopoietic protein-1 regulates the actin membrane skeleton and membrane stability in murine erythrocytes.

    Maia M Chan

    Full Text Available Hematopoietic protein-1 (Hem-1 is a hematopoietic cell specific member of the WAVE (Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome verprolin-homologous protein complex, which regulates filamentous actin (F-actin polymerization in many cell types including immune cells. However, the roles of Hem-1 and the WAVE complex in erythrocyte biology are not known. In this study, we utilized mice lacking Hem-1 expression due to a non-coding point mutation in the Hem1 gene to show that absence of Hem-1 results in microcytic, hypochromic anemia characterized by abnormally shaped erythrocytes with aberrant F-actin foci and decreased lifespan. We find that Hem-1 and members of the associated WAVE complex are normally expressed in wildtype erythrocyte progenitors and mature erythrocytes. Using mass spectrometry and global proteomics, Coomassie staining, and immunoblotting, we find that the absence of Hem-1 results in decreased representation of essential erythrocyte membrane skeletal proteins including α- and β- spectrin, dematin, p55, adducin, ankyrin, tropomodulin 1, band 3, and band 4.1. Hem1⁻/⁻ erythrocytes exhibit increased protein kinase C-dependent phosphorylation of adducin at Ser724, which targets adducin family members for dissociation from spectrin and actin, and subsequent proteolysis. Increased adducin Ser724 phosphorylation in Hem1⁻/⁻ erythrocytes correlates with decreased protein expression of the regulatory subunit of protein phosphatase 2A (PP2A, which is required for PP2A-dependent dephosphorylation of PKC targets. These results reveal a novel, critical role for Hem-1 in the homeostasis of structural proteins required for formation and stability of the actin membrane skeleton in erythrocytes.

  13. A consensus approach to improving patient adherence and persistence with topical treatment for actinic keratosis

    Stockfleth, Eggert; Peris, Ketty; Guillen, Carlos; Cerio, Rino; Basset-Seguin, Nicole; Foley, Peter; Sanches, José; Culshaw, Alex; Erntoft, Sandra; Lebwohl, Mark

    2015-01-01

    Background Topical therapy is important in the treatment of actinic keratosis, but guidance for improving adherence/persistence during topical therapy is still lacking. Objectives To utilize expert consensus to generate a list of recommendations to improve real-world efficacy when prescribing topical therapy for actinic keratosis. Methods An expert panel of eight dermatologists was convened to generate recommendations based on facilitated discussion and consensus generation using a modified D...

  14. Realignment process of actin stress fibers in single living cells studied by focused femtosecond laser irradiation

    Yasukuni, Ryohei; Spitz, Jean-Alexis; Meallet-Renault, Rachel; Negishi, Takayuki; Tada, Takuji; Hosokawa, Yoichiroh; Asahi, Tsuyoshi; Shukunami, Chisa; Hiraki, Yuji; Masuhara, Hiroshi

    2007-01-01

    Three-dimensional dissection of a single actin stress fiber in a living cell was performed based on multi-photon absorption of a focused femtosecond laser pulse. The realignment process of an actin stress fiber was investigated after its direct cutting by a single-shot femtosecond laser pulse irradiation by high-speed transmission and fluorescence imaging methods. It was confirmed that mechanical force led by the femtosecond laser cutting propagates to entire cell through the cytockelton in a...

  15. Linear filaments of the radio arc near the Galactic center

    High-resolution radio continuum VLA images of a segment of the Galactic center arc centered at G0.16-0.15 at wavelengths of both 6 and 20 cm are presented. In this segment, the highest multiplicity of filaments, the largest degree of linear polarization, and a maximum rotation measure of -5500 rad/sq m between wavelengths 6.166 and 6.363 cm are found. The large helical segments which surround the filamentary system are also shown and discussed. Based on a number of intriguing characteristics of the filamentary system, including the helical component and possible twisting of some of the filaments, a picture is considered in which the geometry of the magnetic structure is that of a cylindrically symmetric, force-free field anchored to the halo of the Galaxy. An analogy with solar flare filaments is used to discuss some aspects of the Galactic center filaments. 25 references

  16. Linear filaments of the radio arc near the Galactic center

    Yusef-Zadeh, F.; Morris, M.

    1987-11-01

    High-resolution radio continuum VLA images of a segment of the Galactic center arc centered at G0.16-0.15 at wavelengths of both 6 and 20 cm are presented. In this segment, the highest multiplicity of filaments, the largest degree of linear polarization, and a maximum rotation measure of -5500 rad/sq m between wavelengths 6.166 and 6.363 cm are found. The large helical segments which surround the filamentary system are also shown and discussed. Based on a number of intriguing characteristics of the filamentary system, including the helical component and possible twisting of some of the filaments, a picture is considered in which the geometry of the magnetic structure is that of a cylindrically symmetric, force-free field anchored to the halo of the Galaxy. An analogy with solar flare filaments is used to discuss some aspects of the Galactic center filaments. 25 references.

  17. Preserved filamentous microbial biosignatures in the Brick Flat gossan, Iron Mountain, California

    Williams, Amy J.; Sumner, Dawn Y.; Alpers, Charles N.; Karunatillake, Suniti; Hofmann, Beda A

    2015-01-01

    A variety of actively precipitating mineral environments preserve morphological evidence of microbial biosignatures. One such environment with preserved microbial biosignatures is the oxidized portion of a massive sulfide deposit, or gossan, such as that at Iron Mountain, California. This gossan may serve as a mineralogical analogue to some ancient martian environments due to the presence of oxidized iron and sulfate species, and minerals that only form in acidic aqueous conditions, in both environments. Evaluating the potential biogenicity of cryptic textures in such martian gossans requires an understanding of how microbial textures form biosignatures on Earth. The iron-oxide-dominated composition and morphology of terrestrial, nonbranching filamentous microbial biosignatures may be distinctive of the underlying formation and preservation processes. The Iron Mountain gossan consists primarily of ferric oxide (hematite), hydrous ferric oxide (HFO, predominantly goethite), and jarosite group minerals, categorized into in situ gossan, and remobilized iron deposits. We interpret HFO filaments, found in both gossan types, as HFO-mineralized microbial filaments based in part on (1) the presence of preserved central filament lumina in smooth HFO mineral filaments that are likely molds of microbial filaments, (2) mineral filament formation in actively precipitating iron-oxide environments, (3) high degrees of mineral filament bending consistent with a flexible microbial filament template, and (4) the presence of bare microbial filaments on gossan rocks. Individual HFO filaments are below the resolution of the Mars Curiosity and Mars 2020 rover cameras, but sinuous filaments forming macroscopic matlike textures are resolvable. If present on Mars, available cameras may resolve these features identified as similar to terrestrial HFO filaments and allow subsequent evaluation for their biogenicity by synthesizing geochemical, mineralogical, and morphological analyses. Sinuous

  18. Preserved Filamentous Microbial Biosignatures in the Brick Flat Gossan, Iron Mountain, California.

    Williams, Amy J; Sumner, Dawn Y; Alpers, Charles N; Karunatillake, Suniti; Hofmann, Beda A

    2015-08-01

    A variety of actively precipitating mineral environments preserve morphological evidence of microbial biosignatures. One such environment with preserved microbial biosignatures is the oxidized portion of a massive sulfide deposit, or gossan, such as that at Iron Mountain, California. This gossan may serve as a mineralogical analogue to some ancient martian environments due to the presence of oxidized iron and sulfate species, and minerals that only form in acidic aqueous conditions, in both environments. Evaluating the potential biogenicity of cryptic textures in such martian gossans requires an understanding of how microbial textures form biosignatures on Earth. The iron-oxide-dominated composition and morphology of terrestrial, nonbranching filamentous microbial biosignatures may be distinctive of the underlying formation and preservation processes. The Iron Mountain gossan consists primarily of ferric oxide (hematite), hydrous ferric oxide (HFO, predominantly goethite), and jarosite group minerals, categorized into in situ gossan, and remobilized iron deposits. We interpret HFO filaments, found in both gossan types, as HFO-mineralized microbial filaments based in part on (1) the presence of preserved central filament lumina in smooth HFO mineral filaments that are likely molds of microbial filaments, (2) mineral filament formation in actively precipitating iron-oxide environments, (3) high degrees of mineral filament bending consistent with a flexible microbial filament template, and (4) the presence of bare microbial filaments on gossan rocks. Individual HFO filaments are below the resolution of the Mars Curiosity and Mars 2020 rover cameras, but sinuous filaments forming macroscopic matlike textures are resolvable. If present on Mars, available cameras may resolve these features identified as similar to terrestrial HFO filaments and allow subsequent evaluation for their biogenicity by synthesizing geochemical, mineralogical, and morphological analyses. Sinuous

  19. Alpha-Herpesvirus Infection Induces the Formation of Nuclear Actin Filaments

    Becket Feierbach; Silvia Piccinotti; Margaret Bisher; Winfried Denk; Enquist, Lynn W.

    2006-01-01

    Herpesviruses are large double-stranded DNA viruses that replicate in the nuclei of infected cells. Spatial control of viral replication and assembly in the host nucleus is achieved by the establishment of nuclear compartments that serve to concentrate viral and host factors. How these compartments are established and maintained remains poorly understood. Pseudorabies virus (PRV) is an alpha-herpesvirus often used to study herpesvirus invasion and spread in the nervous system. Here, we report...

  20. Droplets engulfing on a filament

    Wu, Xiang-Fa; Yu, Meng; Zhou, Zhengping; Bedarkar, Amol; Zhao, Youhao

    2014-03-01

    Two immiscible droplets wetting on a filament may assume engulfing, partial-engulfing, or non-engulfing morphology that depends on the wetting behavior and geometries of the resulting droplet-on-filament system. This paper studies the wetting behavior of two immiscible droplets contacting and sitting symmetrically on a straight filament. A set of ordinary differential equations (ODEs) is formulated for determining the wetting morphology of the droplet-on-filament system. In the limiting case of engulfing or non-engulfing, the morphology of the droplet-on-filament system is determined in explicit form. In the case of partial-engulfing, surface finite element method is further employed for determining the wetting morphology, surface energy, and internal pressures of droplets of the system. Numerical scaling study is performed to explore their dependencies upon the wetting properties and geometries of the system. The study can be applicable for analysis and design of textiles with tailorable wetting properties and development of novel multifunctional fibrous materials for environmental protection such as oil-spill sorption, etc.

  1. Novel methods for the quantification of changes in actin organization in chondrocytes using fluorescent imaging and linear profiling.

    Qusous, Ala; Parker, Eleanor; Geewan, Corinne; Kapasi, Arva; Getting, Stephen J; Hucklebridge, Frank; Keshavarz, Tajalli; Kerrigan, Mark J P

    2012-07-01

    We present three novel reproducible methodologies for the quantification of changes in actin organization from microscope images. Striation and integrative analysis were devised for the investigation of trans-cellular filaments and F-actin localization, respectively, in response to physiological or mechanical actin-modulatory conditions. Additionally, the Parker-Qusous (PQ) formula was developed as a measure of total quantity of F-actin, independent of cell volume changes, whereby fluorescence intensity was divided by the cube root of cell volume, squared. Values obtained were quantified in Mauricean Units (Mu; pixel/μm(3)). Upon isolation, there was a 49% decrease in total F-actin fluorescence from 1.91 ± 0.16 pixel/μm(3) (Mu) to 0.95 ± 0.55 Mu, whereas upon culture, an apparent increase in total fluorescence was deemed insignificant due to an increase in average cell volume, with a rise, however, in striation units (StU) from 1 ± 1 to 5 ± 1 StU/cell, and a decrease in percentage cortical fluorescence to 30.45% ± 1.52% (P = 7.8 × 10(-5)). Freshly isolated chondrocytes exhibited a decrease in total F-actin fluorescence to 0.61 ± 0.05 Mu and 0.32 ± 0.02 Mu, 10 min posthypertonic and hypotonic challenges, respectively. Regulatory volume decrease was inhibited in the presence of REV5901 with maintenance of actin levels at 1.15 Mu. Following mechanical impact in situ, there was a reduction in total F-actin fluorescence to 0.95 ± 0.08 Mu and 0.74 ± 0.06 Mu under isotonic and hypotonic conditions, respectively, but not under hypertonic conditions. We report simple methodologies for quantification of changes in actin organization, which will further our understanding of the role of actin in various cellular stress responses. These techniques can be applied to better quantify changes in localization of various proteins using fluorescent labeling. PMID:22514026

  2. The Dynamic Pollen Tube Cytoskeleton: Live Cell Studies Using Actin-Binding and Microtubule-Binding Reporter Proteins

    Alice Y. Cheung; Qiao-hong Duan; Silvia Santos Costa; Barend H.J.de Graaf; Veronica S.Di Stilio; Jose Feijo; Hen-Ming Wu

    2008-01-01

    Pollen tubes elongate within the pistil to transport sperm cells to the embryo sac for fertilization.Growth occurs exclusively at the tube apex,rendering pollen tube elongation a most dramatic polar cell growth process.A hall-mark pollen tube feature is its cytoskeleton,which comprises elaborately organized and dynamic actin microfilaments and microtubules.Pollen tube growth is dependent on the actin cytoskeleton;its organization and regulation have been exalined extensively by various approaches.including fluorescent protein labeled actin-binding proteins in live cell studies.Using the previously described GFP-NtADF1 and GFP-LIADF1, and a new actin reporter protein NtPLIM2b-GFP,we re-affirm that the predominant actin structures in elongating tobacco and lily pollen tubes are long,streaming actin cables along the pollen tube shank,and a subapical structure comprising shorter actin cables.The subapical collection of actin microfilaments undergoes dynamic changes,giving rise to the appearance of structures that range from basket-or funnel-shaped,mesh-like to a subtle ring.NtPLIM2b-GFP is used in combination with a guanine nucleotide exchange factor for the Rho GTPases,AtROP-GEF1,to illustrate the use of these actin reporter proteins to explore the linkage between the polar cell growth process and its actin cytoskeleton.Contrary to the actin cytoskeleton,microtubules appear not to play a direct role in supporting the polar cell growth process in angiosperm pollen tubes.Using a microtubule reporter protein based on the microtubule end-binding protein from Arabidopsis AtEB1,GFP-AtEB1,we show that the extensive microtubule network in elongating pollen tubes displays varying degrees of dynamics.These reporter proteins provide versatile tools to explore the functional connection between major structural and signaling components of the polar pollen tube growth process.

  3. Temperature Controlled Filamentation in Argon Gas

    CAO Shi-Ying; KONG Wei-Peng; SONG Zhen-Ming; QIN Yu; LI Ru-Xin; WANG Qing-Yue; ZHANG Zhi-Gang

    2008-01-01

    Temperature controlled filamentation is experimentally demonstrated in a temperature gradient gas-filled tube.The proper position of the tube is heated by a furnace and two ends of the tube are cooled by air. The experimental results show that multiple filaments are shrunken into a single fila.ment or no filament only by increasing the temperature at the beginning of the filament. This technique offers another degree of freedom of controlling the filamentation and opens a new way for intense monocycle pulse generation through gradient temperature in a noble gas.

  4. Glutamyl phosphate is an activated intermediate in actin crosslinking by actin crosslinking domain (ACD toxin.

    Elena Kudryashova

    Full Text Available Actin Crosslinking Domain (ACD is produced by several life-threatening Gram-negative pathogenic bacteria as part of larger toxins and delivered into the cytoplasm of eukaryotic host cells via Type I or Type VI secretion systems. Upon delivery, ACD disrupts the actin cytoskeleton by catalyzing intermolecular amide bond formation between E270 and K50 residues of actin, leading to the formation of polymerization-deficient actin oligomers. Ultimately, accumulation of the crosslinked oligomers results in structural and functional failure of the actin cytoskeleton in affected cells. In the present work, we advanced in our understanding of the ACD catalytic mechanism by discovering that the enzyme transfers the gamma-phosphoryl group of ATP to the E270 actin residue, resulting in the formation of an activated acyl phosphate intermediate. This intermediate is further hydrolyzed and the energy of hydrolysis is utilized for the formation of the amide bond between actin subunits. We also determined the pH optimum for the reaction and the kinetic parameters of ACD catalysis for its substrates, ATP and actin. ACD showed sigmoidal, non-Michaelis-Menten kinetics for actin (K(0.5 = 30 µM reflecting involvement of two actin molecules in a single crosslinking event. We established that ACD can also utilize Mg(2+-GTP to support crosslinking, but the kinetic parameters (K(M = 8 µM and 50 µM for ATP and GTP, respectively suggest that ATP is the primary substrate of ACD in vivo. The optimal pH for ACD activity was in the range of 7.0-9.0. The elucidated kinetic mechanism of ACD toxicity adds to understanding of complex network of host-pathogen interactions.

  5. Invadosomes - shaping actin networks to follow mechanical cues.

    Kedziora, Katarzyna M; Isogai, Tadamoto; Jalink, Kees; Innocenti, Metello

    2016-01-01

    Invadosomes are actin-based protrusions formed by cells in response to obstacles in their microenvironment, especially basement membranes and dense interstitial matrices. A versatile set of proteins controls assembly and dynamics of the actin networks at invadosomes and adhesive molecules link them with the extracellular matrix. Furthermore, polarized delivery of proteases makes invadosomes degradative. Therefore, invadosomes have been classically viewed as specialized protrusions involved in cell migration and remodeling of the microenvironment. Recent discoveries have considerably broadened this picture by showing that invadosomes respond to traction forces and can self-organize into dynamic arrays capable of following the topography of the substrate. Although these findings suggest that invadosomes may function as mechanosensors, this possibility has not been critically evaluated. In this review, we first summarize the organization and dynamics of actin in invadosomes and their superstructures with emphasis on force-production mechanisms. Next, we outline our current understanding of how mechanical cues impinge on invadosomes and modify their behavior. From this perspective, we provide an outlook of the outstanding open questions and the main challenges in the field. PMID:27100494

  6. Incorporation of mammalian actin into microfilaments in plant cell nucleus

    Paves Heiti

    2004-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Actin is an ancient molecule that shows more than 90% amino acid homology between mammalian and plant actins. The regions of the actin molecule that are involved in F-actin assembly are largely conserved, and it is likely that mammalian actin is able to incorporate into microfilaments in plant cells but there is no experimental evidence until now. Results Visualization of microfilaments in onion bulb scale epidermis cells by different techniques revealed that rhodamine-phalloidin stained F-actin besides cytoplasm also in the nuclei whereas GFP-mouse talin hybrid protein did not enter the nuclei. Microinjection of fluorescently labeled actin was applied to study the presence of nuclear microfilaments in plant cells. Ratio imaging of injected fluorescent rabbit skeletal muscle actin and phalloidin staining of the microinjected cells showed that mammalian actin was able to incorporate into plant F-actin. The incorporation occurred preferentially in the nucleus and in the perinuclear region of plant cells whereas part of plant microfilaments, mostly in the periphery of cytoplasm, did not incorporate mammalian actin. Conclusions Microinjected mammalian actin is able to enter plant cell's nucleus, whereas incorporation of mammalian actin into plant F-actin occurs preferentially in the nucleus and perinuclear area.

  7. Structure-Based Analysis of Toxoplasma gondii Profilin: A Parasite-Specific Motif Is Required for Recognition by Toll-Like Receptor 11

    K Kucera; A Koblansky; L Saunders; K Frederick; E De La Cruz; S Ghosh; Y Modis

    2011-12-31

    Profilins promote actin polymerization by exchanging ADP for ATP on monomeric actin and delivering ATP-actin to growing filament barbed ends. Apicomplexan protozoa such as Toxoplasma gondii invade host cells using an actin-dependent gliding motility. Toll-like receptor (TLR) 11 generates an innate immune response upon sensing T. gondii profilin (TgPRF). The crystal structure of TgPRF reveals a parasite-specific surface motif consisting of an acidic loop, followed by a long {beta}-hairpin. A series of structure-based profilin mutants show that TLR11 recognition of the acidic loop is responsible for most of the interleukin (IL)-12 secretion response to TgPRF in peritoneal macrophages. Deletion of both the acidic loop and the {beta}-hairpin completely abrogates IL-12 secretion. Insertion of the T. gondii acidic loop and {beta}-hairpin into yeast profilin is sufficient to generate TLR11-dependent signaling. Substitution of the acidic loop in TgPRF with the homologous loop from the apicomplexan parasite Cryptosporidium parvum does not affect TLR11-dependent IL-12 secretion, while substitution with the acidic loop from Plasmodium falciparum results in reduced but significant IL-12 secretion. We conclude that the parasite-specific motif in TgPRF is the key molecular pattern recognized by TLR11. Unlike other profilins, TgPRF slows nucleotide exchange on monomeric rabbit actin and binds rabbit actin weakly. The putative TgPRF actin-binding surface includes the {beta}-hairpin and diverges widely from the actin-binding surfaces of vertebrate profilins.

  8. Crystallization and preliminary structural characterization of the two actin-depolymerization factors of the malaria parasite

    The expression, purification and crystallization of Plasmodium actin-depolymerization factors 1 and 2 are described. X-ray diffraction data were collected to 2.0 and 2.1 Å resolution, respectively, and the structures of both proteins in solution were characterized. The malaria parasite Plasmodium depends on its actin-based motor system for motility and host-cell invasion. Actin-depolymerization factors are important regulatory proteins that affect the rate of actin turnover. Plasmodium has two actin-depolymerization factors which seem to have different functions and display low sequence homology to the higher eukaryotic family members. Plasmodium actin-depolymerization factors 1 and 2 have been crystallized. The crystals diffracted X-rays to maximum resolutions of 2.0 and 2.1 Å and belonged to space groups P3121 or P3221, with unit-cell parameters a = b = 68.8, c = 76.0 Å, and P21212, with unit-cell parameters a = 111.6, b = 57.9, c = 40.5 Å, respectively, indicating the presence of one or two molecules per asymmetric unit in both cases

  9. Regular Cellular Distribution of Plasmids by Oscillating and Filament-forming ParA ATPase of Plasmid pB171

    Ebersbach, Gitte; Ringgaard, Simon; Møller-Jensen, Jakob;

    2006-01-01

    Centromere-like loci from bacteria segregate plasmids to progeny cells before cell division. The ParA ATPase (a MinD homologue) of the par2 locus from plasmid pB171 forms oscillating helical structures over the nucleoid. Here we show that par2 distributes plasmid foci regularly along the length...... of the cell even in cells with many plasmids. In vitro, ParA binds ATP and ADP and has a cooperative ATPase activity. Moreover, ParA forms ATP-dependent filaments and cables, suggesting that ParA can provide the mechanical force for the observed regular distribution of plasmids. ParA and ParB interact...... with each other in a bacterial two-hybrid assay but do not interact with FtsZ, eight other essential cell division proteins or MreB actin. Based on these observations, we propose a simple model for how oscillating ParA filaments can mediate regular cellular distribution of plasmids. The model functions...

  10. Regular cellular distribution of plasmids by oscillating and filament-forming ParA ATPase of plasmid pB171

    Ebersbach, Gitte; Ringgaard, Simon; Møller-Jensen, Jakob;

    2006-01-01

    Centromere-like loci from bacteria segregate plasmids to progeny cells before cell division. The ParA ATPase (a MinD homologue) of the par2 locus from plasmid pB171 forms oscillating helical structures over the nucleoid. Here we show that par2 distributes plasmid foci regularly along the length...... of the cell even in cells with many plasmids. In vitro, ParA binds ATP and ADP and has a cooperative ATPase activity. Moreover, ParA forms ATP-dependent filaments and cables, suggesting that ParA can provide the mechanical force for the observed regular distribution of plasmids. ParA and ParB interact...... with each other in a bacterial two-hybrid assay but do not interact with FtsZ, eight other essential cell division proteins or MreB actin. Based on these observations, we propose a simple model for how oscillating ParA filaments can mediate regular cellular distribution of plasmids. The model functions...

  11. Chemotactic peptide modulation of actin assembly and locomotion in neutrophils

    1984-01-01

    To determine the relationship between the state of actin polymerization in neutrophils and the formyl-methionyl-leucyl-phenylalanine (fMLP)- induced changes in the locomotive behavior of neutrophils, the mean rate of locomotion (mROL), the percent G-actin, and the relative F- actin content of neutrophils were determined. The mROL was quantified by analysis of the locomotion of individual cells; the percentage of total actin as G-actin was measured by DNase I inhibition; and the F- actin was d...

  12. On the universality of interstellar filaments: theory meets simulations and observations

    Federrath, Christoph

    2016-03-01

    Filaments are ubiquitous in the Universe. Recent observations have revealed that stars and star clusters form preferentially along dense filaments. Understanding the formation and properties of filaments is therefore a crucial step in understanding star formation. Here we perform 3D high-resolution magnetohydrodynamical simulations that follow the evolution of molecular clouds and the formation of filaments and stars. We apply a filament detection algorithm and compare simulations with different combinations of physical ingredients: gravity, turbulence, magnetic fields and jet/outflow feedback. We find that gravity-only simulations produce significantly narrower filament profiles than observed, while simulations that include turbulence produce realistic filament properties. For these turbulence simulations, we find a remarkably universal filament width of 0.10 ± 0.02 pc, which is independent of the star formation history of the clouds. We derive a theoretical model that provides a physical explanation for this characteristic filament width, based on the sonic scale (λsonic) of molecular cloud turbulence. Our derivation provides λsonic as a function of the cloud diameter L, the velocity dispersion σv, the gas sound speed cs, and the ratio of thermal to magnetic pressure, plasma β. For typical cloud conditions in the Milky Way spiral arms, we find λsonic = 0.04-0.16 pc, in excellent agreement with the filament width of 0.05-0.15 pc from observations. Consistent with the theoretical model assumptions, we find that the velocity dispersion inside the filaments is subsonic and supersonic outside. We further explain the observed p = 2 scaling of the filament density profile, ρ ∝ r-p with the collision of two planar shocks forming a filament at their intersection.

  13. Role of Intermediate Filaments in Vesicular Traffic

    Azzurra Margiotta

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Intermediate filaments are an important component of the cellular cytoskeleton. The first established role attributed to intermediate filaments was the mechanical support to cells. However, it is now clear that intermediate filaments have many different roles affecting a variety of other biological functions, such as the organization of microtubules and microfilaments, the regulation of nuclear structure and activity, the control of cell cycle and the regulation of signal transduction pathways. Furthermore, a number of intermediate filament proteins have been involved in the acquisition of tumorigenic properties. Over the last years, a strong involvement of intermediate filament proteins in the regulation of several aspects of intracellular trafficking has strongly emerged. Here, we review the functions of intermediate filaments proteins focusing mainly on the recent knowledge gained from the discovery that intermediate filaments associate with key proteins of the vesicular membrane transport machinery. In particular, we analyze the current understanding of the contribution of intermediate filaments to the endocytic pathway.

  14. Shape Preserving Filament Enhancement Filtering

    Wilkinson, Michael H.F.; Westenberg, Michel A.

    2001-01-01

    Morphological connected set filters for extraction of filamentous details from medical images are developed. The advantages of these filters are that they are shape preserving and do not amplify noise. Two approaches are compared: (i) multi-scale filtering (ii) single-step shape filtering using conn

  15. Towards filament free semiconductor lasers

    McInerney, John; O'Brien, Peter; Skovgaard, Peter M. W.;

    2000-01-01

    We outline physical models and simulations for suppression of self-focusing and filamentation in large aperture semiconductor lasers. The principal technical objective is to generate multi-watt CW or quasi-CW outputs with nearly diffraction limited beams, suitable for long distance free space...... propagation structures in lasers and amplifiers which suppress lateral reflections....

  16. Capillary thinning of polymeric filaments

    Kolte, Mette Irene; Szabo, Peter

    1999-01-01

    The capillary thinning of filaments of a Newtonian polybutene fluid and a viscoelastic polyisobutylene solution are analyzed experimentally and by means of numerical simulation. The experimental procedure is as follows. Initially, a liquid sample is placed between two cylindrical plates. Then, th...

  17. Capillary thinning of polymeric filaments

    Kolte, Mette Irene; Szabo, Peter; Hassager, Ole

    The capillary thinning of a polymeric filament is analysed experimentally as well as by means of numerical simulation. The experimental procedure is as follows. Initially a liquid sample is kept between two cylindrical plates. Then the bottom plate is lowered under gravity to yield a given strain...

  18. Towards filament free semiconductor lasers

    McInerney, John; O'Brien, Peter; Skovgaard, Peter M. W.; Mullane, Mark; Houlihan, John; O'Neill, Eamonn; Moloney, Jerome V.; Indik, Robert A.

    We outline physical models and simulations for suppression of self-focusing and filamentation in large aperture semiconductor lasers. The principal technical objective is to generate multi-watt CW or quasi-CW outputs with nearly diffraction limited beams, suitable for long distance free space...... propagation structures in lasers and amplifiers which suppress lateral reflections....

  19. Large-scale Motion of Solar Filaments

    Pavel Ambrož; Alfred Schroll

    2000-09-01

    Precise measurements of heliographic position of solar filaments were used for determination of the proper motion of solar filaments on the time-scale of days. The filaments have a tendency to make a shaking or waving of the external structure and to make a general movement of whole filament body, coinciding with the transport of the magnetic flux in the photosphere. The velocity scatter of individual measured points is about one order higher than the accuracy of measurements.

  20. Current-vortex filaments in magnetized plasmas

    Bergmans, J.; Kuvshinov, B. N.; Lakhin, V. P.; Schep, T. J.; Westerhof, E.

    1999-01-01

    Current-vortex filament solutions to the two-fluid plasma equations that describe drift-Alfven waves are presented. Such filament systems are Hamiltonian. Integrable three and four filament systems are discussed in some detail. A wide variety of orbit topologies exists in the plasma case. Special at