WorldWideScience

Sample records for actin based filaments

  1. Filament attachment dynamics in actin-based propulsion

    CERN Document Server

    Katz, J I

    2005-01-01

    Theory and experiment have established that F-actin filaments are strongly attached to the intracellular parasites (such as Listeria) they propel with ``comet tails''. We consider the implications of these observations for propulsion. By calculating the motion produced in various models of attachment and comparing to experiment we demonstrate that the attachment must be sliding rather than hinged. By modeling experiments on ActA-coated spheres we draw conclusions regarding the interaction between F-actin and their surfaces that may also be applicable to living systems.

  2. Particle-Based Modeling of Living Actin Filaments in an Optical Trap

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    Thomas A. Hunt

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available We report a coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulation study of a bundle of parallel actin filaments under supercritical conditions pressing against a loaded mobile wall using a particle-based approach where each particle represents an actin unit. The filaments are grafted to a fixed wall at one end and are reactive at the other end, where they can perform single monomer (depolymerization steps and push on a mobile obstacle. We simulate a reactive grand canonical ensemble in a box of fixed transverse area A, with a fixed number of grafted filaments N f , at temperature T and monomer chemical potential μ 1 . For a single filament case ( N f = 1 and for a bundle of N f = 8 filaments, we analyze the structural and dynamical properties at equilibrium where the external load compensates the average force exerted by the bundle. The dynamics of the bundle-moving-wall unit are characteristic of an over-damped Brownian oscillator in agreement with recent in vitro experiments by an optical trap setup. We analyze the influence of the pressing wall on the kinetic rates of (depolymerization events for the filaments. Both static and dynamic results compare reasonably well with recent theoretical treatments of the same system. Thus, we consider the proposed model as a good tool to investigate the properties of a bundle of living filaments.

  3. Boolean gates on actin filaments

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    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.

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

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    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.

  5. Persistent nuclear actin filaments inhibit transcription by RNA polymerase II.

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    Serebryannyy, Leonid A; Parilla, Megan; Annibale, Paolo; Cruz, Christina M; Laster, Kyle; Gratton, Enrico; Kudryashov, Dmitri; Kosak, Steven T; Gottardi, Cara J; de Lanerolle, Primal

    2016-09-15

    Actin is abundant in the nucleus and it is clear that nuclear actin has important functions. However, mystery surrounds the absence of classical actin filaments in the nucleus. To address this question, we investigated how polymerizing nuclear actin into persistent nuclear actin filaments affected transcription by RNA polymerase II. Nuclear filaments impaired nuclear actin dynamics by polymerizing and sequestering nuclear actin. Polymerizing actin into stable nuclear filaments disrupted the interaction of actin with RNA polymerase II and correlated with impaired RNA polymerase II localization, dynamics, gene recruitment, and reduced global transcription and cell proliferation. Polymerizing and crosslinking nuclear actin in vitro similarly disrupted the actin-RNA-polymerase-II interaction and inhibited transcription. These data rationalize the general absence of stable actin filaments in mammalian somatic nuclei. They also suggest a dynamic pool of nuclear actin is required for the proper localization and activity of RNA polymerase II.

  6. Structure of a Longitudinal Actin Dimer Assembled by Tandem W Domains: Implications for Actin Filament Nucleation

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    Rebowski, Grzegorz; Namgoong, Suk; Boczkowska, Malgorzata; Leavis, Paul C.; Navaza, Jorge; Dominguez, Roberto (IBS); (BBRI); (UPENN-MED)

    2013-11-20

    Actin filament nucleators initiate polymerization in cells in a regulated manner. A common architecture among these molecules consists of tandem WASP homology 2 domains (W domains) that recruit three to four actin subunits to form a polymerization nucleus. We describe a low-resolution crystal structure of an actin dimer assembled by tandem W domains, where the first W domain is cross-linked to Cys374 of the actin subunit bound to it, whereas the last W domain is followed by the C-terminal pointed end-capping helix of thymosin {beta}4. While the arrangement of actin subunits in the dimer resembles that of a long-pitch helix of the actin filament, important differences are observed. These differences result from steric hindrance of the W domain with intersubunit contacts in the actin filament. We also determined the structure of the first W domain of Vibrio parahaemolyticus VopL cross-linked to actin Cys374 and show it to be nearly identical with non-cross-linked W-Actin structures. This result validates the use of cross-linking as a tool for the study of actin nucleation complexes, whose natural tendency to polymerize interferes with most structural methods. Combined with a biochemical analysis of nucleation, the structures may explain why nucleators based on tandem W domains with short inter-W linkers have relatively weak activity, cannot stay bound to filaments after nucleation, and are unlikely to influence filament elongation. The findings may also explain why nucleation-promoting factors of the Arp2/3 complex, which are related to tandem-W-domain nucleators, are ejected from branch junctions after nucleation. We finally show that the simple addition of the C-terminal pointed end-capping helix of thymosin {beta}4 to tandem W domains can change their activity from actin filament nucleation to monomer sequestration.

  7. Structure of a longitudinal actin dimer assembled by tandem w domains: implications for actin filament nucleation.

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    Rebowski, Grzegorz; Namgoong, Suk; Boczkowska, Malgorzata; Leavis, Paul C; Navaza, Jorge; Dominguez, Roberto

    2010-10-15

    Actin filament nucleators initiate polymerization in cells in a regulated manner. A common architecture among these molecules consists of tandem WASP homology 2 domains (W domains) that recruit three to four actin subunits to form a polymerization nucleus. We describe a low-resolution crystal structure of an actin dimer assembled by tandem W domains, where the first W domain is cross-linked to Cys374 of the actin subunit bound to it, whereas the last W domain is followed by the C-terminal pointed end-capping helix of thymosin β4. While the arrangement of actin subunits in the dimer resembles that of a long-pitch helix of the actin filament, important differences are observed. These differences result from steric hindrance of the W domain with intersubunit contacts in the actin filament. We also determined the structure of the first W domain of Vibrio parahaemolyticus VopL cross-linked to actin Cys374 and show it to be nearly identical with non-cross-linked W-Actin structures. This result validates the use of cross-linking as a tool for the study of actin nucleation complexes, whose natural tendency to polymerize interferes with most structural methods. Combined with a biochemical analysis of nucleation, the structures may explain why nucleators based on tandem W domains with short inter-W linkers have relatively weak activity, cannot stay bound to filaments after nucleation, and are unlikely to influence filament elongation. The findings may also explain why nucleation-promoting factors of the Arp2/3 complex, which are related to tandem-W-domain nucleators, are ejected from branch junctions after nucleation. We finally show that the simple addition of the C-terminal pointed end-capping helix of thymosin β4 to tandem W domains can change their activity from actin filament nucleation to monomer sequestration.

  8. Dynamics of Actin Filament Ends in a Network

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    Yang, Le; Sept, David; Carlsson, Anders

    2004-03-01

    The formation of filopodia-like bundles in vitro from a dendritic actin network has been observed(D. Vignjevic et al, J. Cell Biol. 160, 951 (2003)) to occur as a result of a nucleation process. We study the dynamics of the actin filament ends in such a network in order to evaluate the dynamics of the bundle nucleation process. Our model treats two semiflexible actin filaments fixed at one end and free at the other, moving according to Brownian dynamics. The initial filament positions are chosen according to a thermal distribution, and we evaluate the time for the filaments to come close enough to each other to interact and bind. The capture criterion is based either on the distance between filaments, or on a combination of distance and relative orientation. We evaluate the dependence of the capture time on the filament length and radius, and the distance between the filament bases. Since treating the movement of the individual monomers in filaments is computationally unwieldy, we treat the filament motion using a normal mode analysis which permits use of a much longer timestep. We find that this method yields rapid convergence even when only the few longest-wavelength modes are included.

  9. Mechanical properties of branched actin filaments

    CERN Document Server

    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...

  10. Evolutionarily divergent, unstable filamentous actin is essential for gliding motility in apicomplexan parasites.

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    Skillman, Kristen M; Diraviyam, Karthikeyan; Khan, Asis; Tang, Keliang; Sept, David; Sibley, L David

    2011-10-01

    Apicomplexan parasites rely on a novel form of actin-based motility called gliding, which depends on parasite actin polymerization, to migrate through their hosts and invade cells. However, parasite actins are divergent both in sequence and function and only form short, unstable filaments in contrast to the stability of conventional actin filaments. The molecular basis for parasite actin filament instability and its relationship to gliding motility remain unresolved. We demonstrate that recombinant Toxoplasma (TgACTI) and Plasmodium (PfACTI and PfACTII) actins polymerized into very short filaments in vitro but were induced to form long, stable filaments by addition of equimolar levels of phalloidin. Parasite actins contain a conserved phalloidin-binding site as determined by molecular modeling and computational docking, yet vary in several residues that are predicted to impact filament stability. In particular, two residues were identified that form intermolecular contacts between different protomers in conventional actin filaments and these residues showed non-conservative differences in apicomplexan parasites. Substitution of divergent residues found in TgACTI with those from mammalian actin resulted in formation of longer, more stable filaments in vitro. Expression of these stabilized actins in T. gondii increased sensitivity to the actin-stabilizing compound jasplakinolide and disrupted normal gliding motility in the absence of treatment. These results identify the molecular basis for short, dynamic filaments in apicomplexan parasites and demonstrate that inherent instability of parasite actin filaments is a critical adaptation for gliding motility.

  11. Evolutionarily divergent, unstable filamentous actin is essential for gliding motility in apicomplexan parasites.

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    Kristen M Skillman

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Apicomplexan parasites rely on a novel form of actin-based motility called gliding, which depends on parasite actin polymerization, to migrate through their hosts and invade cells. However, parasite actins are divergent both in sequence and function and only form short, unstable filaments in contrast to the stability of conventional actin filaments. The molecular basis for parasite actin filament instability and its relationship to gliding motility remain unresolved. We demonstrate that recombinant Toxoplasma (TgACTI and Plasmodium (PfACTI and PfACTII actins polymerized into very short filaments in vitro but were induced to form long, stable filaments by addition of equimolar levels of phalloidin. Parasite actins contain a conserved phalloidin-binding site as determined by molecular modeling and computational docking, yet vary in several residues that are predicted to impact filament stability. In particular, two residues were identified that form intermolecular contacts between different protomers in conventional actin filaments and these residues showed non-conservative differences in apicomplexan parasites. Substitution of divergent residues found in TgACTI with those from mammalian actin resulted in formation of longer, more stable filaments in vitro. Expression of these stabilized actins in T. gondii increased sensitivity to the actin-stabilizing compound jasplakinolide and disrupted normal gliding motility in the absence of treatment. These results identify the molecular basis for short, dynamic filaments in apicomplexan parasites and demonstrate that inherent instability of parasite actin filaments is a critical adaptation for gliding motility.

  12. Self-assembly of Artificial Actin Filaments

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    Grosenick, Christopher; Cheng, Shengfeng

    Actin Filaments are long, double-helical biopolymers that make up the cytoskeleton along with microtubules and intermediate filaments. In order to further understand the self-assembly process of these biopolymers, a model to recreate actin filament geometry was developed. A monomer in the shape of a bent rod with vertical and lateral binding sites was designed to assemble into single or double helices. With Molecular Dynamics simulations, a variety of phases were observed to form by varying the strength of the binding sites. Ignoring lateral binding sites, we have found a narrow range of binding strengths that lead to long single helices via various growth pathways. When lateral binding strength is introduced, double helices begin to form. These double helices self-assemble into substantially more stable structures than their single helix counterparts. We have found double helices to form long filaments at about half the vertical binding strength of single helices. Surprisingly, we have found that triple helices occasionally form, indicating the importance of structural regulation in the self-assembly of biopolymers.

  13. Tropomyosin diffusion over actin subunits facilitates thin filament assembly

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    Stefan Fischer

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Coiled-coil tropomyosin binds to consecutive actin-subunits along actin-containing thin filaments. Tropomyosin molecules then polymerize head-to-tail to form cables that wrap helically around the filaments. Little is known about the assembly process that leads to continuous, gap-free tropomyosin cable formation. We propose that tropomyosin molecules diffuse over the actin-filament surface to connect head-to-tail to partners. This possibility is likely because (1 tropomyosin hovers loosely over the actin-filament, thus binding weakly to F-actin and (2 low energy-barriers provide tropomyosin freedom for 1D axial translation on F-actin. We consider that these unique features of the actin-tropomyosin interaction are the basis of tropomyosin cable formation.

  14. Tropomyosin diffusion over actin subunits facilitates thin filament assembly

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    Fischer, Stefan; Rynkiewicz, Michael J.; Moore, Jeffrey R.; Lehman, William

    2016-01-01

    Coiled-coil tropomyosin binds to consecutive actin-subunits along actin-containing thin filaments. Tropomyosin molecules then polymerize head-to-tail to form cables that wrap helically around the filaments. Little is known about the assembly process that leads to continuous, gap-free tropomyosin cable formation. We propose that tropomyosin molecules diffuse over the actin-filament surface to connect head-to-tail to partners. This possibility is likely because (1) tropomyosin hovers loosely over the actin-filament, thus binding weakly to F-actin and (2) low energy-barriers provide tropomyosin freedom for 1D axial translation on F-actin. We consider that these unique features of the actin-tropomyosin interaction are the basis of tropomyosin cable formation. PMID:26798831

  15. Three-dimensional structure of actin filaments and of an actin gel made with actin-binding protein.

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    Niederman, R; Amrein, P C; Hartwig, J

    1983-05-01

    Purified muscle actin and mixtures of actin and actin-binding protein were examined in the transmission electron microscope after fixation, critical point drying, and rotary shadowing. The three-dimensional structure of the protein assemblies was analyzed by a computer-assisted graphic analysis applicable to generalized filament networks. This analysis yielded information concerning the frequency of filament intersections, the filament length between these intersections, the angle at which filaments branch at these intersections, and the concentration of filaments within a defined volume. Purified actin at a concentration of 1 mg/ml assembled into a uniform mass of long filaments which overlap at random angles between 0 degrees and 90 degrees. Actin in the presence of macrophage actin-binding protein assembled into short, straight filaments, organized in a perpendicular branching network. The distance between branch points was inversely related to the molar ratio of actin-binding protein to actin. This distance was what would be predicted if actin filaments grew at right angles off of nucleation sites on the two ends of actin-binding protein dimers, and then annealed. The results suggest that actin in combination with actin-binding protein self-assembles to form a three-dimensional network resembling the peripheral cytoskeleton of motile cells.

  16. Bundling Actin Filaments From Membranes: Some Novel Players

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    Clément eThomas

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Progress in live-cell imaging of the cytoskeleton has significantly extended our knowledge about the organization and dynamics of actin filaments near the plasma membrane of plant cells. Noticeably, two populations of filamentous structures can be distinguished. On the one hand, fine actin filaments which exhibit an extremely dynamic behavior basically characterized by fast polymerization and prolific severing events, a process referred to as actin stochastic dynamics. On the other hand, thick actin bundles which are composed of several filaments and which are comparatively more stable although they constantly remodel as well. There is evidence that the actin cytoskeleton plays critical roles in trafficking and signaling at both the cell cortex and organelle periphery but the exact contribution of actin bundles remains unclear. A common view is that actin bundles provide the long-distance tracks used by myosin motors to deliver their cargo to growing regions and accordingly play a particularly important role in cell polarization. However, several studies support that actin bundles are more than simple passive highways and display multiple and dynamic roles in the regulation of many processes, such as cell elongation, polar auxin transport, stomatal and chloroplast movement, and defense against pathogens. The list of identified plant actin-bundling proteins is ever expanding, supporting that plant cells shape structurally and functionally different actin bundles. Here I review the most recently characterized actin-bundling proteins, with a particular focus on those potentially relevant to membrane trafficking and/or signaling.

  17. Multiscale modeling and mechanics of filamentous actin cytoskeleton.

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    Yamaoka, Hidetaka; Matsushita, Shinji; Shimada, Yoshitaka; Adachi, Taiji

    2012-03-01

    The adaptive structure and functional changes of the actin cytoskeleton are induced by its mechanical behavior at various temporal and spatial scales. In particular, the mechanical behaviors at different scales play important roles in the mechanical functions of various cells, and these multiscale phenomena require clarification. To establish a milestone toward achieving multiscale modeling and simulation, this paper reviews mathematical analyses and simulation methods applied to the mechanics of the filamentous actin cytoskeleton. The actin cytoskeleton demonstrates characteristic behaviors at every temporal and spatial scale, and mathematical models and simulation methods can be applied to each level of actin cytoskeletal structure ranging from the molecular to the network level. This paper considers studies on mathematical models and simulation methods based on the molecular dynamics, coarse-graining, and continuum dynamics approaches. Every temporal and spatial scale of actin cytoskeletal structure is considered, and it is expected that discrete and continuum dynamics ranging from functional expression at the molecular level to macroscopic functional expression at the whole cell level will be developed and applied to multiscale modeling and simulation.

  18. Actin filament attachments for sustained motility in vitro are maintained by filament bundling.

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    Xiaohua Hu

    Full Text Available We reconstructed cellular motility in vitro from individual proteins to investigate how actin filaments are organized at the leading edge. Using total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy of actin filaments, we tested how profilin, Arp2/3, and capping protein (CP function together to propel thin glass nanofibers or beads coated with N-WASP WCA domains. Thin nanofibers produced wide comet tails that showed more structural variation in actin filament organization than did bead substrates. During sustained motility, physiological concentrations of Mg(2+ generated actin filament bundles that processively attached to the nanofiber. Reduction of total Mg(2+ abolished particle motility and actin attachment to the particle surface without affecting actin polymerization, Arp2/3 nucleation, or filament capping. Analysis of similar motility of microspheres showed that loss of filament bundling did not affect actin shell formation or symmetry breaking but eliminated sustained attachments between the comet tail and the particle surface. Addition of Mg(2+, Lys-Lys(2+, or fascin restored both comet tail attachment and sustained particle motility in low Mg(2+ buffers. TIRF microscopic analysis of filaments captured by WCA-coated beads in the absence of Arp2/3, profilin, and CP showed that filament bundling by polycation or fascin addition increased barbed end capture by WCA domains. We propose a model in which CP directs barbed ends toward the leading edge and polycation-induced filament bundling sustains processive barbed end attachment to the leading edge.

  19. Lamellipodin promotes actin assembly by clustering Ena/VASP proteins and tethering them to actin filaments.

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    Hansen, Scott D; Mullins, R Dyche

    2015-01-01

    Enabled/Vasodilator (Ena/VASP) proteins promote actin filament assembly at multiple locations, including: leading edge membranes, focal adhesions, and the surface of intracellular pathogens. One important Ena/VASP regulator is the mig-10/Lamellipodin/RIAM family of adaptors that promote lamellipod formation in fibroblasts and drive neurite outgrowth and axon guidance in neurons. To better understand how MRL proteins promote actin network formation we studied the interactions between Lamellipodin (Lpd), actin, and VASP, both in vivo and in vitro. We find that Lpd binds directly to actin filaments and that this interaction regulates its subcellular localization and enhances its effect on VASP polymerase activity. We propose that Lpd delivers Ena/VASP proteins to growing barbed ends and increases their polymerase activity by tethering them to filaments. This interaction represents one more pathway by which growing actin filaments produce positive feedback to control localization and activity of proteins that regulate their assembly.

  20. Toxoplasma gondii profilin acts primarily to sequester G-actin while formins efficiently nucleate actin filament formation in vitro.

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    Skillman, Kristen M; Daher, Wassim; Ma, Christopher I; Soldati-Favre, Dominique; Sibley, L David

    2012-03-27

    Apicomplexan parasites employ gliding motility that depends on the polymerization of parasite actin filaments for host cell entry. Despite this requirement, parasite actin remains almost entirely unpolymerized at steady state; formation of filaments required for motility relies on a small repertoire of actin-binding proteins. Previous studies have shown that apicomplexan formins and profilin exhibit canonical functions on heterologous actins from higher eukaryotes; however, their biochemical properties on parasite actins are unknown. We therefore analyzed the impact of T. gondii profilin (TgPRF) and FH1-FH2 domains of two formin isoforms in T. gondii (TgFRM1 and TgFRM2) on the polymerization of T. gondii actin (TgACTI). Our findings based on in vitro assays demonstrate that TgFRM1-FH1-FH2 and TgFRM2-FH1-FH2 dramatically enhanced TgACTI polymerization in the absence of profilin, making them the sole protein factors known to initiate polymerization of this normally unstable actin. In addition, T. gondii formin domains were shown to both initiate polymerization and induce bundling of TgACTI filaments; however, they did not rely on TgPRF for these activities. In contrast, TgPRF sequestered TgACTI monomers, thus inhibiting polymerization even in the presence of formins. Collectively, these findings provide insight into the unusual control mechanisms of actin dynamics within the parasite.

  1. Septins promote F-actin ring formation by crosslinking actin filaments into curved bundles.

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    Mavrakis, Manos; Azou-Gros, Yannick; Tsai, Feng-Ching; Alvarado, José; Bertin, Aurélie; Iv, Francois; Kress, Alla; Brasselet, Sophie; Koenderink, Gijsje H; Lecuit, Thomas

    2014-04-01

    Animal cell cytokinesis requires a contractile ring of crosslinked actin filaments and myosin motors. How contractile rings form and are stabilized in dividing cells remains unclear. We address this problem by focusing on septins, highly conserved proteins in eukaryotes whose precise contribution to cytokinesis remains elusive. We use the cleavage of the Drosophila melanogaster embryo as a model system, where contractile actin rings drive constriction of invaginating membranes to produce an epithelium in a manner akin to cell division. In vivo functional studies show that septins are required for generating curved and tightly packed actin filament networks. In vitro reconstitution assays show that septins alone bundle actin filaments into rings, accounting for the defects in actin ring formation in septin mutants. The bundling and bending activities are conserved for human septins, and highlight unique functions of septins in the organization of contractile actomyosin rings.

  2. Correlative nanoscale imaging of actin filaments and their complexes.

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    Sharma, Shivani; Zhu, Huanqi; Grintsevich, Elena E; Reisler, Emil; Gimzewski, James K

    2013-07-01

    Actin remodeling is an area of interest in biology in which correlative microscopy can bring a new way to analyze protein complexes at the nanoscale. Advances in EM, X-ray diffraction, fluorescence, and single molecule techniques have provided a wealth of information about the modulation of the F-actin structure and its regulation by actin binding proteins (ABPs). Yet, there are technological limitations of these approaches to achieving quantitative molecular level information on the structural and biophysical changes resulting from ABPs interaction with F-actin. Fundamental questions about the actin structure and dynamics and how these determine the function of ABPs remain unanswered. Specifically, how local and long-range structural and conformational changes result in ABPs induced remodeling of F-actin needs to be addressed at the single filament level. Advanced, sensitive and accurate experimental tools for detailed understanding of ABP-actin interactions are much needed. This article discusses the current understanding of nanoscale structural and mechanical modulation of F-actin by ABPs at the single filament level using several correlative microscopic techniques, focusing mainly on results obtained by Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) analysis of ABP-actin complexes.

  3. Red light, Phot1 and JAC1 modulate Phot2-dependent reorganization of chloroplast actin filaments and chloroplast avoidance movement.

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    Ichikawa, Satoshi; Yamada, Noboru; Suetsugu, Noriyuki; Wada, Masamitsu; Kadota, Akeo

    2011-08-01

    The phototropin (phot)-dependent intracellular relocation of chloroplasts is a ubiquitous phenomenon in plants. We have previously revealed the involvement of a short cp-actin (chloroplast actin) filament-based mechanism in this movement. Here, the reorganization of cp-actin filaments during the avoidance movement of chloroplasts was analyzed in higher time resolution under blue GFP (green fluorescent protein) excitation light in an actin filament-visualized line of Arabidopsis thaliana. Under standard background red light of 89 μmol m(-2) s(-1), cp-actin filaments transiently disappeared at approximately 30 s and reappeared in a biased configuration on chloroplasts approximately 70 s after blue excitation light irradiation. The timing of biased cp-actin reappearance was delayed under the background of strong red light or in the absence of red light. Consistently, chloroplast movement was delayed under these conditions. In phot1 mutants, acceleration of both the disappearance and reappearance of cp-actin filaments occurred, indicating an inhibitory action of phot1 on reorganization of cp-actin filaments. Avoidance movements began sooner in phot1 than in wild-type plants. No reorganization of cp-actin filaments was seen in phot2 or phot1phot2 mutants lacking phot2, which is responsible for avoidance movements. Surprisingly, jac1 (j-domain protein required for chloroplast accumulation response 1) mutants, lacking the accumulation response, showed no avoidance movements under the whole-cell irradiation condition for GFP observation. Cp-actin filaments in jac1 did not show a biased distribution, with a small or almost no transient decrease in the number. These results indicate a close association between the biased distribution of cp-actin filaments and chloroplast movement. Further, JAC1 is suggested to function in the biased cp-actin filament distribution by regulating their appearance and disappearance.

  4. Filament assembly by Spire: key residues and concerted actin binding.

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    Rasson, Amy S; Bois, Justin S; Pham, Duy Stephen L; Yoo, Haneul; Quinlan, Margot E

    2015-02-27

    The most recently identified class of actin nucleators, WASp homology domain 2 (WH2) nucleators, use tandem repeats of monomeric actin-binding WH2 domains to facilitate actin nucleation. WH2 domains are involved in a wide variety of actin regulatory activities. Structurally, they are expected to clash with interprotomer contacts within the actin filament. Thus, the discovery of their role in nucleation was surprising. Here we use Drosophila Spire (Spir) as a model system to investigate both how tandem WH2 domains can nucleate actin and what differentiates nucleating WH2-containing proteins from their non-nucleating counterparts. We found that the third WH2 domain in Spir (Spir-C or SC) plays a unique role. In the context of a short nucleation construct (containing only two WH2 domains), placement of SC in the N-terminal position was required for the most potent nucleation. We found that the native organization of the WH2 domains with respect to each other is necessary for binding to actin with positive cooperativity. We identified two residues within SC that are critical for its activity. Using this information, we were able to convert a weak synthetic nucleator into one with activity equal to a native Spir construct. Lastly, we found evidence that SC binds actin filaments, in addition to monomers.

  5. Antibodies covalently immobilized on actin filaments for fast myosin driven analyte transport.

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    Saroj Kumar

    Full Text Available Biosensors would benefit from further miniaturization, increased detection rate and independence from external pumps and other bulky equipment. Whereas transportation systems built around molecular motors and cytoskeletal filaments hold significant promise in the latter regard, recent proof-of-principle devices based on the microtubule-kinesin motor system have not matched the speed of existing methods. An attractive solution to overcome this limitation would be the use of myosin driven propulsion of actin filaments which offers motility one order of magnitude faster than the kinesin-microtubule system. Here, we realized a necessary requirement for the use of the actomyosin system in biosensing devices, namely covalent attachment of antibodies to actin filaments using heterobifunctional cross-linkers. We also demonstrated consistent and rapid myosin II driven transport where velocity and the fraction of motile actin filaments was negligibly affected by the presence of antibody-antigen complexes at rather high density (>20 µm(-1. The results, however, also demonstrated that it was challenging to consistently achieve high density of functional antibodies along the actin filament, and optimization of the covalent coupling procedure to increase labeling density should be a major focus for future work. Despite the remaining challenges, the reported advances are important steps towards considerably faster nanoseparation than shown for previous molecular motor based devices, and enhanced miniaturization because of high bending flexibility of actin filaments.

  6. Liquid crystal domains and thixotropy of filamentous actin suspensions.

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    Kerst, A; Chmielewski, C; Livesay, C; Buxbaum, R E; Heidemann, S R

    1990-06-01

    The thixotropic properties of filamentous actin suspensions were examined by a step-function shearing protocol. Samples of purified filamentous actin were sheared at 0.2 sec-1 in a cone and plate rheometer. We noted a sharp stress overshoot upon the initiation of shear, indicative of a gel state, and a nearly instantaneous drop to zero stress upon cessation of shear. Stress-overshoot recovery was almost complete after 5 min of "rest" before samples were again sheared at 0.2 sec-1. Overshoot recovery increased linearly with the square root of rest time, suggesting that gel-state recovery is diffusion limited. Actin suspensions subjected to oscillatory shearing at frequencies from 0.003 to 30 radians/sec confirmed the existence of a 5-min time scale in the gel, similar to that for stress-overshoot recovery. Flow of filamentous actin was visualized by polarized light observations. Actin from 6 mg/ml to 20 mg/ml showed the "polycrystalline" texture of birefringence typical for liquid crystal structure. At shear rates less than 1 sec-1, flow occurred by the relative movement of irregular, roughly ellipsoidal actin domains 40-140 microns long; the appearance was similar to moving ice floes. At shear rates greater than 1 sec-1, domains decreased in size, possibly by frictional interactions among domains. Eventually domains flow in a "river" of actin aligned by the flow. Our observations confirm our previous domain-friction model for actin rheology. The similarities between the unusual flow properties of actin and cytoplasm argue that cytoplasm also may flow as domains.

  7. Structural Modeling and Molecular Dynamics Simulation of the Actin Filament

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Splettstoesser, Thomas [University of Heidelberg; Holmes, Kenneth [Max Planck Institute, Heidelberg, Germany; Noe, Frank [DFG Research Center Matheon, FU Berlin, Germany; Smith, Jeremy C [ORNL

    2011-01-01

    Actin is a major structural protein of the eukaryotic cytoskeleton and enables cell motility. Here, we present a model of the actin filament (F-actin) that not only incorporates the global structure of the recently published model by Oda et al. but also conserves internal stereochemistry. A comparison is made using molecular dynamics simulation of the model with other recent F-actin models. A number of structural determents such as the protomer propeller angle, the number of hydrogen bonds, and the structural variation among the protomers are analyzed. The MD comparison is found to reflect the evolution in quality of actin models over the last 6 years. In addition, simulations of the model are carried out in states with both ADP or ATP bound and local hydrogen-bonding differences characterized.

  8. Electrostatics control actin filament nucleation and elongation kinetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crevenna, Alvaro H; Naredi-Rainer, Nikolaus; Schönichen, André; Dzubiella, Joachim; Barber, Diane L; Lamb, Don C; Wedlich-Söldner, Roland

    2013-04-26

    The actin cytoskeleton is a central mediator of cellular morphogenesis, and rapid actin reorganization drives essential processes such as cell migration and cell division. Whereas several actin-binding proteins are known to be regulated by changes in intracellular pH, detailed information regarding the effect of pH on the actin dynamics itself is still lacking. Here, we combine bulk assays, total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy, fluorescence fluctuation spectroscopy techniques, and theory to comprehensively characterize the effect of pH on actin polymerization. We show that both nucleation and elongation are strongly enhanced at acidic pH, with a maximum close to the pI of actin. Monomer association rates are similarly affected by pH at both ends, although dissociation rates are differentially affected. This indicates that electrostatics control the diffusional encounter but not the dissociation rate, which is critical for the establishment of actin filament asymmetry. A generic model of protein-protein interaction, including electrostatics, explains the observed pH sensitivity as a consequence of charge repulsion. The observed pH effect on actin in vitro agrees with measurements of Listeria propulsion in pH-controlled cells. pH regulation should therefore be considered as a modulator of actin dynamics in a cellular environment.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  10. Actin filaments on myosin beds: The velocity distribution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourdieu, L.; Magnasco, M. O.; Winkelmann, D. A.; Libchaber, A.

    1995-12-01

    In vitro studies of actin filaments sliding on a myosin-coated surface are analyzed, filament by filament, at a sampling rate of 30 per second. For each filament, the mean arc length coordinate is computed and histograms of instantaneous velocities, along the arc length, are established. Two types of motion are observed, depending on the experimental conditions. The first one is characterized by a homogeneous flow, with well defined velocities. In this regime, specific defects are a constitutive part of the flow. It is observed at high temperature, at high myosin coverage, and with a particular mode of attachment of myosin to the surface. The second regime shows no clear velocity selection, but a broadband distribution. It is characterized by high friction and is observed at low temperature or low myosin density. (c) 1995 The American Physical Society

  11. Mesoscopic model of actin-based propulsion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  12. Prokaryotic DNA segregation by an actin-like filament

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    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 prop......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...... point for ParM polymerization. Hence, we provide evidence for a simple prokaryotic analogue of the eukaryotic mitotic spindle apparatus....

  13. Nano-assembly of nanodiamonds by conjugation to actin filaments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bradac, Carlo; Say, Jana M; Rastogi, Ishan D; Cordina, Nicole M; Volz, Thomas; Brown, Louise J

    2016-03-01

    Fluorescent nanodiamonds (NDs) are remarkable objects. They possess unique mechanical and optical properties combined with high surface areas and controllable surface reactivity. They are non-toxic and hence suited for use in biological environments. NDs are also readily available and commercially inexpensive. Here, the exceptional capability of controlling and tailoring their surface chemistry is demonstrated. Small, bright diamond nanocrystals (size ˜30 nm) are conjugated to protein filaments of actin (length ˜3-7 µm). The conjugation to actin filaments is extremely selective and highly target-specific. These unique features, together with the relative simplicity of the conjugation-targeting method, make functionalised nanodiamonds a powerful and versatile platform in biomedicine and quantum nanotechnologies. Applications ranging from using NDs as superior biological markers to, potentially, developing novel bottom-up approaches for the fabrication of hybrid quantum devices that would bridge across the bio/solid-state interface are presented and discussed.

  14. Tropomodulin Capping of Actin Filaments in Striated Muscle Development and Physiology

    OpenAIRE

    Gokhin, David S.; Fowler, Velia M.

    2011-01-01

    Efficient striated muscle contraction requires precise assembly and regulation of diverse actin filament systems, most notably the sarcomeric thin filaments of the contractile apparatus. By capping the pointed ends of actin filaments, tropomodulins (Tmods) regulate actin filament assembly, lengths, and stability. Here, we explore the current understanding of the expression patterns, localizations, and functions of Tmods in both cardiac and skeletal muscle. We first describe the mechanisms by ...

  15. Chloroplast actin filaments organize meshwork on the photorelocated chloroplasts in the moss Physcomitrella patens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamashita, Hiroko; Sato, Yoshikatsu; Kanegae, Takeshi; Kagawa, Takatoshi; Wada, Masamitsu; Kadota, Akeo

    2011-02-01

    Cytoskeleton dynamics during phototropin-dependent chloroplast photorelocation movement was analyzed in protonemal cells of actin- and microtubule-visualized lines of Physcomitrella patens expressing GFP- or tdTomato-talin and GFP-tubulin. Using newly developed epi- and trans-microbeam irradiation systems that permit fluorescence observation of the cell under blue microbeam irradiation inducing chloroplast relocation, it was revealed that meshwork of actin filaments formed at the chloroplast-accumulating area both in the avoidance and accumulation movements. The structure disappeared soon when blue microbeam was turned off, and it was not induced under red microbeam irradiation that did not evoke chloroplast relocation movement. In contrast, no apparent change in microtubule organization was detected during the movements. The actin meshwork was composed of short actin filaments distinct from the cytoplasmic long actin cables and was present between the chloroplasts and plasma membrane. The short actin filaments emerged from around the chloroplast periphery towards the center of chloroplast. Showing highly dynamic behavior, the chloroplast actin filaments (cp-actin filaments) were rapidly organized into meshwork on the chloroplast surface facing plasma membrane. The actin filament configuration on a chloroplast led to the formation of actin meshwork area in the cell as the chloroplasts arrived at and occupied the area. After establishment of the meshwork, cp-actin filaments were still highly dynamic, showing appearance, disappearance, severing and bundling of filaments. These results indicate that the cp-actin filaments have significant roles in the chloroplast movement and positioning in the cell.

  16. The structural basis of actin filament branching by the Arp2/3 complex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rouiller, Isabelle; Xu, Xiao-Ping; Amann, Kurt J; Egile, Coumaran; Nickell, Stephan; Nicastro, Daniela; Li, Rong; Pollard, Thomas D; Volkmann, Niels; Hanein, Dorit

    2008-03-10

    The actin-related protein 2/3 (Arp2/3) complex mediates the formation of branched actin filaments at the leading edge of motile cells and in the comet tails moving certain intracellular pathogens. Crystal structures of the Arp2/3 complex are available, but the architecture of the junction formed by the Arp2/3 complex at the base of the branch was not known. In this study, we use electron tomography to reconstruct the branch junction with sufficient resolution to show how the Arp2/3 complex interacts with the mother filament. Our analysis reveals conformational changes in both the mother filament and Arp2/3 complex upon branch formation. The Arp2 and Arp3 subunits reorganize into a dimer, providing a short-pitch template for elongation of the daughter filament. Two subunits of the mother filament undergo conformational changes that increase stability of the branch. These data provide a rationale for why branch formation requires cooperative interactions among the Arp2/3 complex, nucleation-promoting factors, an actin monomer, and the mother filament.

  17. Force-velocity measurements of a few growing actin filaments.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Coraline Brangbour

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available The polymerization of actin in filaments generates forces that play a pivotal role in many cellular processes. We introduce a novel technique to determine the force-velocity relation when a few independent anchored filaments grow between magnetic colloidal particles. When a magnetic field is applied, the colloidal particles assemble into chains under controlled loading or spacing. As the filaments elongate, the beads separate, allowing the force-velocity curve to be precisely measured. In the widely accepted Brownian ratchet model, the transduced force is associated with the slowing down of the on-rate polymerization. Unexpectedly, in our experiments, filaments are shown to grow at the same rate as when they are free in solution. However, as they elongate, filaments are more confined in the interspace between beads. Higher repulsive forces result from this higher confinement, which is associated with a lower entropy. In this mechanism, the production of force is not controlled by the polymerization rate, but is a consequence of the restriction of filaments' orientational fluctuations at their attachment point.

  18. Force-Velocity Measurements of a Few Growing Actin Filaments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brangbour, Coraline; du Roure, Olivia; Helfer, Emmanuèle; Démoulin, Damien; Mazurier, Alexis; Fermigier, Marc; Carlier, Marie-France; Bibette, Jérôme; Baudry, Jean

    2011-01-01

    The polymerization of actin in filaments generates forces that play a pivotal role in many cellular processes. We introduce a novel technique to determine the force-velocity relation when a few independent anchored filaments grow between magnetic colloidal particles. When a magnetic field is applied, the colloidal particles assemble into chains under controlled loading or spacing. As the filaments elongate, the beads separate, allowing the force-velocity curve to be precisely measured. In the widely accepted Brownian ratchet model, the transduced force is associated with the slowing down of the on-rate polymerization. Unexpectedly, in our experiments, filaments are shown to grow at the same rate as when they are free in solution. However, as they elongate, filaments are more confined in the interspace between beads. Higher repulsive forces result from this higher confinement, which is associated with a lower entropy. In this mechanism, the production of force is not controlled by the polymerization rate, but is a consequence of the restriction of filaments' orientational fluctuations at their attachment point. PMID:21541364

  19. Actin filaments growing against a barrier with fluctuating shape

    CERN Document Server

    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.

  20. Actin-filament disassembly: it takes two to shrink them fast.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winterhoff, Moritz; Faix, Jan

    2015-06-01

    Actin-filament disassembly is indispensable for replenishing the pool of polymerizable actin and allows continuous dynamic remodelling of the actin cytoskeleton. A new study now reveals that ADF/cofilin preferentially dismantles branched networks and provides new insights into the collaborative work of ADF/cofilin and Aip1 on filament disassembly at the molecular level.

  1. Stochastic dynamics of actin filaments in guard cells regulating chloroplast localization during stomatal movement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xiu-Ling; Gao, Xin-Qi; Wang, Xue-Chen

    2011-08-01

    Actin filaments and chloroplasts in guard cells play roles in stomatal function. However, detailed actin dynamics vary, and the roles that they play in chloroplast localization during stomatal movement remain to be determined. We examined the dynamics of actin filaments and chloroplast localization in transgenic tobacco expressing green fluorescent protein (GFP)-mouse talin in guard cells by time-lapse imaging. Actin filaments showed sliding, bundling and branching dynamics in moving guard cells. During stomatal movement, long filaments can be severed into small fragments, which can form longer filaments by end-joining activities. With chloroplast movement, actin filaments near chloroplasts showed severing and elongation activity in guard cells during stomatal movement. Cytochalasin B treatment abolished elongation, bundling and branching activities of actin filaments in guard cells, and these changes of actin filaments, and as a result, more chloroplasts were localized at the centre of guard cells. However, chloroplast turning to avoid high light, and sliding of actin fragments near the chloroplast, was unaffected following cytochalasin B treatment in guard cells. We suggest that the sliding dynamics of actin may play roles in chloroplast turning in guard cells. Our results indicate that the stochastic dynamics of actin filaments in guard cells regulate chloroplast localization during stomatal movement.

  2. Mechanics model for actin-based motility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Yuan

    2009-02-01

    We present here a mechanics model for the force generation by actin polymerization. The possible adhesions between the actin filaments and the load surface, as well as the nucleation and capping of filament tips, are included in this model on top of the well-known elastic Brownian ratchet formulation. A closed form solution is provided from which the force-velocity relationship, summarizing the mechanics of polymerization, can be drawn. Model predictions on the velocity of moving beads driven by actin polymerization are consistent with experiment observations. This model also seems capable of explaining the enhanced actin-based motility of Listeria monocytogenes and beads by the presence of Vasodilator-stimulated phosphoprotein, as observed in recent experiments.

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

    CERN Document Server

    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...

  4. Quantification of Filamentous Actin (F-actin) Puncta in Rat Cortical Neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Hailong; Aksenova, Marina; Bertrand, Sarah J; Mactutus, Charles F; Booze, Rosemarie

    2016-02-10

    Filamentous actin protein (F-actin) plays a major role in spinogenesis, synaptic plasticity, and synaptic stability. Changes in dendritic F-actin rich structures suggest alterations in synaptic integrity and connectivity. Here we provide a detailed protocol for culturing primary rat cortical neurons, Phalloidin staining for F-actin puncta, and subsequent quantification techniques. First, the frontal cortex of E18 rat embryos are dissociated into low-density cell culture, then the neurons grown in vitro for at least 12-14 days. Following experimental treatment, the cortical neurons are stained with AlexaFluor 488 Phalloidin (to label the dendritic F-actin puncta) and microtubule-associated protein 2 (MAP2; to validate the neuronal cells and dendritic integrity). Finally, specialized software is used to analyze and quantify randomly selected neuronal dendrites. F-actin rich structures are identified on second order dendritic branches (length range 25-75 µm) with continuous MAP2 immunofluorescence. The protocol presented here will be a useful method for investigating changes in dendritic synapse structures subsequent to experimental treatments.

  5. Phototropin-dependent biased relocalization of cp-actin filaments can be induced even when chloroplast movement is inhibited

    OpenAIRE

    Yamada, Noboru; Suetsugu, Noriyuki; Wada, Masamitsu; Kadota, Akeo

    2011-01-01

    In a recent publication using an actin-visualized line of Arabidopsis (Ichikawa et al. 2011, ref. 11), we reported a detailed analysis with higher time resolution on the dynamics of chloroplast actin filaments (cp-actin filaments) during chloroplast avoidance movement and demonstrated a good correlation between the biased configuration of cp-actin filaments and chloroplast movement. However, we could not conclusively determine whether the reorganization of cp-actin filaments into a biased con...

  6. Preliminarily Investigating the Polymorphism of Self-organized Actin Filament in Vitro by Atomic Force Microscope

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jun ZHANG; Yuan-Liang WANG; Xin-Yong Chen; Chuang-Long HE; Chao CHENG; Yang CAO

    2004-01-01

    With the atomic force microscope (AFM), we preliminarily investigated the large-scale structure of actin filaments formed in low concentration protein solution (5 μg/ml) via self-organization without the presence of any F-actin dynamic interfering factors (such as phalloidin) in vitro. It was found that the G-actin could be polymerized into ordered filamentous structures with different diameter from the slimmest filament of single F-actin to giant filament in tree-like branched aggregates. The observed polymerized actin filaments, to which our most intense attention was attracted, was discretely distributed and showed obvious polymorphism distinctly different from those in the presence of phalloidin or actin binding proteins (fimbrin, gelsolin, etc.) in previous experiments. Latter structures were mainly composed of single F-actin and/or multifilaments clearly consisting of several single F-actin. The experimental results clearly demonstrated that non-interference with the F-actin intrinsic dynamics in self-organizing could lead to the polymorphism of actin filamentous structures, and further analysis implied that the disturbance of normal F-actin dynamics by many factors could prevent the emergence of structural polymorphism, more often than not, give rise to formation of specific structures instead and different interference would bring about various particular structures under certain conditions.

  7. Structural complexity of filaments formed from the actin and tubulin folds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Shimin; Ghoshdastider, Umesh; Narita, Akihiro; Popp, David

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT From yeast to man, an evolutionary distance of 1.3 billion years, the F-actin filament structure has been conserved largely in line with the 94% sequence identity. The situation is entirely different in bacteria. In comparison to eukaryotic actins, the bacterial actin-like proteins (ALPs) show medium to low levels of sequence identity. This is extreme in the case of the ParM family of proteins, which often display less than 20% identity. ParMs are plasmid segregation proteins that form the polymerizing motors that propel pairs of plasmids to the extremities of a cell prior to cell division, ensuring faithful inheritance of the plasmid. Recently, exotic ParM filament structures have been elucidated that show ParM filament geometries are not limited to the standard polar pair of strands typified by actin. Four-stranded non-polar ParM filaments existing as open or closed nanotubules are found in Clostridium tetani and Bacillus thuringiensis, respectively. These diverse architectures indicate that the actin fold is capable of forming a large variety of filament morphologies, and that the conception of the “actin” filament has been heavily influenced by its conservation in eukaryotes. Here, we review the history of the structure determination of the eukaryotic actin filament to give a sense of context for the discovery of the new ParM filament structures. We describe the novel ParM geometries and predict that even more complex actin-like filaments may exist in bacteria. Finally, we compare the architectures of filaments arising from the actin and tubulin folds and conclude that the basic units possess similar properties that can each form a range of structures. Thus, the use of the actin fold in microfilaments and the tubulin fold for microtubules likely arose from a wider range of filament possibilities, but became entrenched as those architectures in early eukaryotes. PMID:28042378

  8. Phosphatidylserine liposomes can be tethered by caldesmon to actin filaments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Makuch, R; Zasada, A; Mabuchi, K; Krauze, K; Wang, C L; Dabrowska, R

    1997-01-01

    Rotary shadowing electron microscopy revealed that attachment of caldesmon to phosphatidylserine (PS) liposomes was mainly through its C-terminal end. To determine the PS-binding sites of caldesmon, we have made use of synthetic peptides covering the two C-terminal calmodulin binding sites and a recombinant fragment corresponding to the N-terminal end of the C-terminal domain that contains an amphipathic helix. Interactions of these peptides with the PS liposomes were studied by nondenaturing gel electrophoresis and fluorescence spectroscopy. The results showed that both calmodulin-binding sites of caldesmon were able to interact with PS. The affinity (Kd) of PS for these sites was in the range of 1.8-14.3 x 10(-5) M, compared to 0.69 x 10(-5) M for the whole caldesmon molecule. Fragments located outside of calmodulin-binding sites bound PS weakly (3.85 x 10(-4) M) and thus may contain a second class of lipid-binding sites. Binding of PS induced conformational changes in regions other than the C-terminal PS-binding sites, as evidenced by the changes in the susceptibility to proteolytic cleavages. Most significantly, the presence of caldesmon greatly increased binding of PS to F-actin, suggesting that caldesmon may tether PS liposomes to actin filaments. These results raise the possibility that caldesmon-lipid interactions could play a functionally important role in the assembly of contractile filaments near the membranes. Images FIGURE 2 FIGURE 4 FIGURE 6 PMID:9284327

  9. Mechanical output of myosin II motors is regulated by myosin filament size and actin network mechanics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stam, Samantha; Alberts, Jonathan; Gardel, Margaret; Munro, Edwin

    2013-03-01

    The interactions of bipolar myosin II filaments with actin arrays are a predominate means of generating forces in numerous physiological processes including muscle contraction and cell migration. However, how the spatiotemporal regulation of these forces depends on motor mechanochemistry, bipolar filament size, and local actin mechanics is unknown. Here, we simulate myosin II motors with an agent-based model in which the motors have been benchmarked against experimental measurements. Force generation occurs in two distinct regimes characterized either by stable tension maintenance or by stochastic buildup and release; transitions between these regimes occur by changes to duty ratio and myosin filament size. The time required for building force to stall scales inversely with the stiffness of a network and the actin gliding speed of a motor. Finally, myosin motors are predicted to contract a network toward stiffer regions, which is consistent with experimental observations. Our representation of myosin motors can be used to understand how their mechanical and biochemical properties influence their observed behavior in a variety of in vitro and in vivo contexts.

  10. Short actin-based mechanism for light-directed chloroplast movement in Arabidopsis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kadota, Akeo; Yamada, Noboru; Suetsugu, Noriyuki; Hirose, Mana; Saito, Chieko; Shoda, Keiko; Ichikawa, Satoshi; Kagawa, Takatoshi; Nakano, Akihiko; Wada, Masamitsu

    2009-08-04

    Organelle movement is essential for proper function of living cells. In plants, these movements generally depend on actin filaments, but the underlying mechanism is unknown. Here, in Arabidopsis, we identify associations of short actin filaments along the chloroplast periphery on the plasma membrane side associated with chloroplast photorelocation and anchoring to the plasma membrane. We have termed these chloroplast-actin filaments (cp-actin filaments). Cp-actin filaments emerge from the chloroplast edge and exhibit rapid turnover. The presence of cp-actin filaments depends on an actin-binding protein, chloroplast unusual positioning1 (CHUP1), localized on the chloroplast envelope. chup1 mutant lacked cp-actin filaments but showed normal cytoplasmic actin filaments. When irradiated with blue light to induce chloroplast movement, cp-actin filaments relocalize to the leading edge of chloroplasts before and during photorelocation and are regulated by 2 phototropins, phot1 and phot2. Our findings suggest that plants evolved a unique actin-based mechanism for organelle movement.

  11. The effect of jasplakinolide on the thermodynamic properties of ADP.BeFx bound actin filaments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kardos, Roland; Vig, Andrea; Orbán, József; Hild, Gábor; Nyitrai, Miklós; Lőrinczy, Dénes

    2010-01-01

    The effect of BeFx and a natural toxin (jasplakinolide) was examined on the thermal stability of actin filaments by using differential scanning calorimetry. The phosphate analogue beryllium fluoride shifted the melting temperature of actin filaments (67.4 °C) to 83.7 °C indicating that the filaments were thermodynamically more stable in their complex with ADP.BeFx. A similar tendency was observed when the jasplakinolide was used in the absence of BeFx. When both the ADP.BeFx and the jasplakinolide bound to the actin filaments their collective effect was similar to that observed with ADP.BeFx or jasplakinolide alone. These results suggested that ADP.BeFx and jasplakinolide probably stabilize the actin filaments by similar molecular mechanisms. PMID:20543906

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

    CERN Document Server

    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...

  13. Emergence of large-scale cell morphology and movement from local actin filament growth dynamics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Catherine I Lacayo

    2007-09-01

    Full Text Available Variations in cell migration and morphology are consequences of changes in underlying cytoskeletal organization and dynamics. We investigated how these large-scale cellular events emerge as direct consequences of small-scale cytoskeletal molecular activities. Because the properties of the actin cytoskeleton can be modulated by actin-remodeling proteins, we quantitatively examined how one such family of proteins, enabled/vasodilator-stimulated phosphoprotein (Ena/VASP, affects the migration and morphology of epithelial fish keratocytes. Keratocytes generally migrate persistently while exhibiting a characteristic smooth-edged "canoe" shape, but may also exhibit less regular morphologies and less persistent movement. When we observed that the smooth-edged canoe keratocyte morphology correlated with enrichment of Ena/VASP at the leading edge, we mislocalized and overexpressed Ena/VASP proteins and found that this led to changes in the morphology and movement persistence of cells within a population. Thus, local changes in actin filament dynamics due to Ena/VASP activity directly caused changes in cell morphology, which is coupled to the motile behavior of keratocytes. We also characterized the range of natural cell-to-cell variation within a population by using measurable morphological and behavioral features--cell shape, leading-edge shape, filamentous actin (F-actin distribution, cell speed, and directional persistence--that we have found to correlate with each other to describe a spectrum of coordinated phenotypes based on Ena/VASP enrichment at the leading edge. This spectrum stretched from smooth-edged, canoe-shaped keratocytes--which had VASP highly enriched at their leading edges and migrated fast with straight trajectories--to more irregular, rounder cells migrating slower with less directional persistence and low levels of VASP at their leading edges. We developed a mathematical model that accounts for these coordinated cell-shape and

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

    CERN Document Server

    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...

  15. Possible association of actin filaments with chloroplasts of spinach mesophyll cells in vivo and in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumatani, T; Sakurai-Ozato, N; Miyawaki, N; Yokota, E; Shimmen, T; Terashima, I; Takagi, S

    2006-11-01

    In palisade mesophyll cells of spinach (Spinacia oleracea L.) kept under low-intensity white light, chloroplasts were apparently immobile and seemed to be surrounded by fine bundles of actin filaments. High-intensity blue light induced actin-dependent chloroplast movement concomitant with the appearance of a couple of long, straight bundles of actin filaments in each cell, whereas high-intensity red light was essentially ineffective in inducing these responses. The actin organization observed under low-intensity white light has been postulated to function in anchoring chloroplasts at proper intracellular positions through direct interaction with the chloroplasts. Intact chloroplasts, which retained their outer envelopes, were isolated after homogenization of leaves and Percoll centrifugation. No endogenous actin was detected by immunoblotting in the final intact-chloroplast fraction prepared from the leaves kept under low-intensity white light or in darkness. In cosedimentation assays with exogenously added skeletal muscle filamentous actin, however, actin was detected in the intact-chloroplast fraction precipitated after low-speed centrifugation. The association of actin with chloroplasts was apparently dependent on incubation time and chloroplast density. After partial disruption of the outer envelope of isolated chloroplasts by treatment with trypsin, actin was no longer coprecipitated. The results suggest that chloroplasts in spinach leaves can directly interact with actin, and that this interaction may be involved in the regulation of intracellular positioning of chloroplasts.

  16. Cargo Transport by Two Coupled Myosin Va Motors on Actin Filaments and Bundles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ali, M Yusuf; Vilfan, Andrej; Trybus, Kathleen M; Warshaw, David M

    2016-11-15

    Myosin Va (myoVa) is a processive, actin-based molecular motor essential for intracellular cargo transport. When a cargo is transported by an ensemble of myoVa motors, each motor faces significant physical barriers and directional challenges created by the complex actin cytoskeleton, a network of actin filaments and actin bundles. The principles that govern the interaction of multiple motors attached to the same cargo are still poorly understood. To understand the mechanical interactions between multiple motors, we developed a simple in vitro model in which two individual myoVa motors labeled with different-colored Qdots are linked via a third Qdot that acts as a cargo. The velocity of this two-motor complex was reduced by 27% as compared to a single motor, whereas run length was increased by only 37%, much less than expected from multimotor transport models. Therefore, at low ATP, which allowed us to identify individual motor steps, we investigated the intermotor dynamics within the two-motor complex. The randomness of stepping leads to a buildup of tension in the linkage between motors-which in turn slows down the leading motor-and increases the frequency of backward steps and the detachment rate. We establish a direct relationship between the velocity reduction and the distribution of intermotor distances. The analysis of run lengths and dwell times for the two-motor complex, which has only one motor engaged with the actin track, reveals that half of the runs are terminated by almost simultaneous detachment of both motors. This finding challenges the assumptions of conventional multimotor models based on consecutive motor detachment. Similar, but even more drastic, results were observed with two-motor complexes on actin bundles, which showed a run length that was even shorter than that of a single motor.

  17. High-speed depolymerization at actin filament ends jointly catalysed by Twinfilin and Srv2/CAP.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnston, Adam B; Collins, Agnieszka; Goode, Bruce L

    2015-11-01

    Purified actin filaments depolymerize slowly, and cytosolic conditions strongly favour actin assembly over disassembly, which has left our understanding of how actin filaments are rapidly turned over in vivo incomplete. One mechanism for driving filament disassembly is severing by factors such as Cofilin. However, even after severing, pointed-end depolymerization remains slow and unable to fully account for observed rates of actin filament turnover in vivo. Here we describe a mechanism by which Twinfilin and Cyclase-associated protein work in concert to accelerate depolymerization of actin filaments by 3-fold and 17-fold at their barbed and pointed ends, respectively. This mechanism occurs even under assembly conditions, allowing reconstitution and direct visualization of individual filaments undergoing tunable, accelerated treadmilling. Further, we use specific mutations to demonstrate that this activity is critical for Twinfilin function in vivo. These findings fill a major gap in our knowledge of cellular disassembly mechanisms, and suggest that depolymerization and severing may be deployed separately or together to control the dynamics and architecture of distinct actin networks.

  18. High Speed Depolymerization at Actin Filament Ends Jointly Catalyzed by Twinfilin and Srv2/CAP

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnston, Adam B.; Collins, Agnieszka; Goode, Bruce L.

    2015-01-01

    Purified actin filaments depolymerize slowly, and cytosolic conditions strongly favor actin assembly over disassembly, which has left our understanding of how actin filaments are rapidly turned over in vivo incomplete 1,2. One mechanism for driving filament disassembly is severing by factors such as Cofilin. However, even after severing, pointed end depolymerization remains slow and unable to fully account for observed rates of actin filament turnover in vivo. Here we describe a mechanism by which Twinfilin and Cyclase-associated protein work in concert to accelerate depolymerization of actin filaments by 3-fold and 17-fold at their barbed and pointed ends, respectively. This mechanism occurs even under assembly conditions, allowing reconstitution and direct visualization of individual filaments undergoing tunable, accelerated treadmilling. Further, we use specific mutations to demonstrate that this activity is critical for Twinfilin function in vivo. These findings fill a major gap in our knowledge of mechanisms, and suggest that depolymerization and severing may be deployed separately or together to control the dynamics and architecture of distinct actin networks. PMID:26458246

  19. Molecular mechanism of Ena/VASP-mediated actin-filament elongation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Breitsprecher, Dennis; Kiesewetter, Antje K; Linkner, Joern; Vinzenz, Marlene; Stradal, Theresia E B; Small, John Victor; Curth, Ute; Dickinson, Richard B; Faix, Jan

    2011-02-01

    Ena/VASP proteins are implicated in a variety of fundamental cellular processes including axon guidance and cell migration. In vitro, they enhance elongation of actin filaments, but at rates differing in nearly an order of magnitude according to species, raising questions about the molecular determinants of rate control. Chimeras from fast and slow elongating VASP proteins were generated and their ability to promote actin polymerization and to bind G-actin was assessed. By in vitro TIRF microscopy as well as thermodynamic and kinetic analyses, we show that the velocity of VASP-mediated filament elongation depends on G-actin recruitment by the WASP homology 2 motif. Comparison of the experimentally observed elongation rates with a quantitative mathematical model moreover revealed that Ena/VASP-mediated filament elongation displays a saturation dependence on the actin monomer concentration, implying that Ena/VASP proteins, independent of species, are fully saturated with actin in vivo and generally act as potent filament elongators. Moreover, our data showed that spontaneous addition of monomers does not occur during processive VASP-mediated filament elongation on surfaces, suggesting that most filament formation in cells is actively controlled.

  20. Dendritic Actin Filament Nucleation Causes Traveling Waves and Patches

    CERN Document Server

    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.

  1. In vitro reconstitution of dynamic microtubules interacting with actin filament networks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Preciado Lopez, M.; Huber, F.; Grigoriev, Ilya; Steinmetz, M.O.; Akhmanova, Anna; Dogterom, M.; Koenderink, G.H.

    2014-01-01

    Interactions between microtubules and actin filaments (F-actin) are essential for eukaryotic cell migration, polarization, growth, and division. Although the importance of these interactions has been long recognized, the inherent complexity of the cell interior hampers a detailed mechanistic study o

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  3. Allosteric regulation by cooperative conformational changes of actin filaments drives mutually exclusive binding with cofilin and myosin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ngo, Kien Xuan; Umeki, Nobuhisa; Kijima, Saku T; Kodera, Noriyuki; Ueno, Hiroaki; Furutani-Umezu, Nozomi; Nakajima, Jun; Noguchi, Taro Q P; Nagasaki, Akira; Tokuraku, Kiyotaka; Uyeda, Taro Q P

    2016-10-20

    Heavy meromyosin (HMM) of myosin II and cofilin each binds to actin filaments cooperatively and forms clusters along the filaments, but it is unknown whether the two cooperative bindings are correlated and what physiological roles they have. Fluorescence microscopy demonstrated that HMM-GFP and cofilin-mCherry each bound cooperatively to different parts of actin filaments when they were added simultaneously in 0.2 μM ATP, indicating that the two cooperative bindings are mutually exclusive. In 0.1 mM ATP, the motor domain of myosin (S1) strongly inhibited the formation of cofilin clusters along actin filaments. Under this condition, most actin protomers were unoccupied by S1 at any given moment, suggesting that transiently bound S1 alters the structure of actin filaments cooperatively and/or persistently to inhibit cofilin binding. Consistently, cosedimentation experiments using copolymers of actin and actin-S1 fusion protein demonstrated that the fusion protein affects the neighboring actin protomers, reducing their affinity for cofilin. In reciprocal experiments, cofilin-actin fusion protein reduced the affinity of neighboring actin protomers for S1. Thus, allosteric regulation by cooperative conformational changes of actin filaments contributes to mutually exclusive cooperative binding of myosin II and cofilin to actin filaments, and presumably to the differential localization of both proteins in cells.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2002-01-01

    It was the general belief that DNA partitioning in prokaryotes is independent of a cytoskeletal structure, which in eukaryotic cells is indispensable for DNA segregation. Recently, however, immunofluorescence microscopy revealed highly dynamic, filamentous structures along the longitudinal axis...... 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...

  5. Distribution pattern changes of actin filaments during chloroplast movement in Adiantum capillus-veneris.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsuboi, Hidenori; Wada, Masamitsu

    2012-05-01

    Chloroplasts change their positions in a cell in response to light intensities. The photoreceptors involved in chloroplast photo-relocation movements and the behavior of chloroplasts during their migration were identified in our previous studies, but the mechanism of movement has yet to be clarified. In this study, the behavior of actin filaments under various light conditions was observed in Adiantum capillus-veneris gametophytes. In chloroplasts staying in one place under a weak light condition and not moving, circular structures composed of actin filaments were observed around the chloroplast periphery. In contrast, short actin filaments were observed at the leading edge of moving chloroplasts induced by partial cell irradiation. In the dark, the circular structures found under the weak light condition disappeared and then reappeared around the moving chloroplasts. Mutant analyses revealed that the disappearance of the circular actin structure was mediated by the blue light photoreceptor, phototropin2.

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

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    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.

  7. The impact of tropomyosins on actin filament assembly is isoform specific.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janco, Miro; Bonello, Teresa T; Byun, Alex; Coster, Adelle C F; Lebhar, Helene; Dedova, Irina; Gunning, Peter W; Böcking, Till

    2016-07-01

    Tropomyosin (Tpm) is an α helical coiled-coil dimer that forms a co-polymer along the actin filament. Tpm is involved in the regulation of actin's interaction with binding proteins as well as stabilization of the actin filament and its assembly kinetics. Recent studies show that multiple Tpm isoforms also define the functional properties of distinct actin filament populations within a cell. Subtle structural variations within well conserved Tpm isoforms are the key to their functional specificity. Therefore, we purified and characterized a comprehensive set of 8 Tpm isoforms (Tpm1.1, Tpm1.12, Tpm1.6, Tpm1.7, Tpm1.8, Tpm2.1, Tpm3.1, and Tpm4.2), using well-established actin co-sedimentation and pyrene fluorescence polymerization assays. We observed that the apparent affinity (Kd(app)) to filamentous actin varied in all Tpm isoforms between ∼0.1-5 μM with similar values for both, skeletal and cytoskeletal actin filaments. The data did not indicate any correlation between affinity and size of Tpm molecules, however high molecular weight (HMW) isoforms Tpm1.1, Tpm1.6, Tpm1.7 and Tpm2.1, showed ∼3-fold higher cooperativity compared to low molecular weight (LMW) isoforms Tpm1.12, Tpm1.8, Tpm3.1, and Tpm4.2. The rate of actin filament elongation in the presence of Tpm2.1 increased, while all other isoforms decreased the elongation rate by 27-85 %. Our study shows that the biochemical properties of Tpm isoforms are finely tuned and depend on sequence variations in alternatively spliced regions of Tpm molecules.

  8. Leukocytes Breach Endothelial Barriers by Insertion of Nuclear Lobes and Disassembly of Endothelial Actin Filaments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sagi Barzilai

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The endothelial cytoskeleton is a barrier for leukocyte transendothelial migration (TEM. Mononuclear and polymorphonuclear leukocytes generate gaps of similar micron-scale size when squeezing through inflamed endothelial barriers in vitro and in vivo. To elucidate how leukocytes squeeze through these barriers, we co-tracked the endothelial actin filaments and leukocyte nuclei in real time. Nuclear squeezing involved either preexistent or de novo-generated lobes inserted into the leukocyte lamellipodia. Leukocyte nuclei reversibly bent the endothelial actin stress fibers. Surprisingly, formation of both paracellular gaps and transcellular pores by squeezing leukocytes did not require Rho kinase or myosin II-mediated endothelial contractility. Electron-microscopic analysis suggested that nuclear squeezing displaced without condensing the endothelial actin filaments. Blocking endothelial actin turnover abolished leukocyte nuclear squeezing, whereas increasing actin filament density did not. We propose that leukocyte nuclei must disassemble the thin endothelial actin filaments interlaced between endothelial stress fibers in order to complete TEM.

  9. Gestalt-binding of tropomyosin on actin during thin filament activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-08-01

    Our thesis is that thin filament function can only be fully understood and muscle regulation then elucidated if atomic structures of the thin filament are available to reveal the positions of tropomyosin on actin in all physiological states. After all, it is tropomyosin influenced by troponin that regulates myosin-crossbridge cycling on actin and therefore controls contraction in all muscles. In addition, we maintain that a complete appreciation of thin filament activation also requires that the mechanical properties of tropomyosin itself are recognized and then related to the effect of myosin-association on actin. Taking the Gestalt-binding of tropomyosin into account, coupled with our electron microscopy structures and computational chemistry, we propose a comprehensive mechanism for tropomyosin regulatory movement over the actin filament surface that explains the cooperative muscle activation process. In fact, well-known point mutations of critical amino acids on the actin-tropomyosin binding interface disrupt Gestalt-binding and are associated with a number of inherited myopathies. Moreover, dysregulation of tropomyosin may also be a factor that interferes with the gatekeeping operation of non-muscle tropomyosin in the controlling interactions of a wide variety of cellular actin-binding proteins. The clinical relevance of Gestalt-binding is discussed in articles by the Marston and the Gunning groups in this special journal issue devoted to the impact of tropomyosin on biological systems.

  10. The role of formin tails in actin nucleation, processive elongation, and filament bundling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vizcarra, Christina L; Bor, Batbileg; Quinlan, Margot E

    2014-10-31

    Formins are multidomain proteins that assemble actin in a wide variety of biological processes. They both nucleate and remain processively associated with growing filaments, in some cases accelerating filament growth. The well conserved formin homology 1 and 2 domains were originally thought to be solely responsible for these activities. Recently a role in nucleation was identified for the Diaphanous autoinhibitory domain (DAD), which is C-terminal to the formin homology 2 domain. The C-terminal tail of the Drosophila formin Cappuccino (Capu) is conserved among FMN formins but distinct from other formins. It does not have a DAD domain. Nevertheless, we find that Capu-tail plays a role in filament nucleation similar to that described for mDia1 and other formins. Building on this, replacement of Capu-tail with DADs from other formins tunes nucleation activity. Capu-tail has low-affinity interactions with both actin monomers and filaments. Removal of the tail reduces actin filament binding and bundling. Furthermore, when the tail is removed, we find that processivity is compromised. Despite decreased processivity, the elongation rate of filaments is unchanged. Again, replacement of Capu-tail with DADs from other formins tunes the processive association with the barbed end, indicating that this is a general role for formin tails. Our data show a role for the Capu-tail domain in assembling the actin cytoskeleton, largely mediated by electrostatic interactions. Because of its multifunctionality, the formin tail is a candidate for regulation by other proteins during cytoskeletal rearrangements.

  11. Structures of actin-like ParM filaments show architecture of plasmid-segregating spindles

    OpenAIRE

    Bharat, Tanmay A. M.; Murshudov, Garib N.; Sachse, Carsten; Löwe, Jan

    2015-01-01

    Active segregation of E. coli low-copy number plasmid R1 involves formation of a bipolar spindle made of left-handed double-helical actin-like ParM filaments 1-6 . ParR links the filaments with centromeric parC plasmid DNA, while facilitating the addition of subunits to ParM filaments 3,7-9 . Growing ParMRC spindles push sister plasmids to the cell poles 9,10 . Here, using modern electron cryomicroscopy methods we have investigated the structures and arrangements of ParM filaments in vitro an...

  12. The molybdenum cofactor biosynthesis complex interacts with actin filaments via molybdenum insertase Cnx1 as anchor protein in Arabidopsis thaliana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaufholdt, David; Baillie, Christin-Kirsty; Bikker, Rolf; Burkart, Valentin; Dudek, Christian-Alexander; von Pein, Linn; Rothkegel, Martin; Mendel, Ralf R; Hänsch, Robert

    2016-03-01

    The pterin based molybdenum cofactor (Moco) plays an essential role in almost all organisms. Its biosynthesis is catalysed by six enzymes in a conserved four step reaction pathway. The last three steps are located in the cytoplasm, where a multimeric protein complex is formed to protect the intermediates from degradation. Bimolecular fluorescence complementation was used to test for cytoskeleton association of the Moco biosynthesis enzymes with actin filaments and microtubules using known cytoskeleton associated proteins, thus permitting non-invasive in vivo studies. Coding sequences of binding proteins were cloned via the GATEWAY system. No Moco biosynthesis enzyme showed any interaction with microtubules. However, alone the two domain protein Cnx1 exhibited interaction with actin filaments mediated by both domains with the Cnx1G domain displaying a stronger interaction. Cnx6 showed actin association only if unlabelled Cnx1 was co-expressed in comparable amounts. So Cnx1 is likely to be the anchor protein for the whole biosynthesis complex on actin filaments. A stabilization of the whole Moco biosynthesis complex on the cytoskeleton might be crucial. In addition a micro-compartmentation might either allow a localisation near the mitochondrial ATM3 exporter providing the first Moco intermediate or near one of the three molybdate transporters enabling efficient molybdate incorporation.

  13. Phototropin-dependent biased relocalization of cp-actin filaments can be induced even when chloroplast movement is inhibited.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamada, Noboru; Suetsugu, Noriyuki; Wada, Masamitsu; Kadota, Akeo

    2011-11-01

    In a recent publication using an actin-visualized line of Arabidopsis (Ichikawa et al. 2011, ref. 11), we reported a detailed analysis with higher time resolution on the dynamics of chloroplast actin filaments (cp-actin filaments) during chloroplast avoidance movement and demonstrated a good correlation between the biased configuration of cp-actin filaments and chloroplast movement. However, we could not conclusively determine whether the reorganization of cp-actin filaments into a biased configuration preceded actual chloroplast movement (and, thus, whether it could be a cause of the movement). In this report, we present clear evidence that the reorganization of cp-actin filaments into a biased distribution is induced even in the absence of the actual movement of chloroplasts. When the cells were treated with 2,3-butanedione monoxime (BDM), a potent inhibitor of myosin ATPase, chloroplast motility was completely suppressed. Nevertheless, the disappearance and biased relocalization of cp-actin filaments toward the side of the prospective movement direction were induced by irradiation with a strong blue light microbeam. The results definitively indicate that the reorganization of cp-actin filaments is not an effect of chloroplast movement; however, it is feasible that the biased localization of cp-actin filaments is an event leading to chloroplast movement.

  14. Rapid severing and motility of chloroplast-actin filaments are required for the chloroplast avoidance response in Arabidopsis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kong, Sam-Geun; Arai, Yoshiyuki; Suetsugu, Noriyuki; Yanagida, Toshio; Wada, Masamitsu

    2013-02-01

    Phototropins (phot1 and phot2 in Arabidopsis thaliana) relay blue light intensity information to the chloroplasts, which move toward weak light (the accumulation response) and away from strong light (the avoidance response). Chloroplast-actin (cp-actin) filaments are vital for mediating these chloroplast photorelocation movements. In this report, we examine in detail the cp-actin filament dynamics by which the chloroplast avoidance response is regulated. Although stochastic dynamics of cortical actin fragments are observed on the chloroplasts, the basic mechanisms underlying the disappearance (including severing and turnover) of the cp-actin filaments are regulated differently from those of cortical actin filaments. phot2 plays a pivotal role in the strong blue light-induced severing and random motility of cp-actin filaments, processes that are therefore essential for asymmetric cp-actin formation for the avoidance response. In addition, phot2 functions in the bundling of cp-actin filaments that is induced by dark incubation. By contrast, the function of phot1 is dispensable for these responses. Our findings suggest that phot2 is the primary photoreceptor involved in the rapid reorganization of cp-actin filaments that allows chloroplasts to change direction rapidly and control the velocity of the avoidance movement according to the light's intensity and position.

  15. Pyk2 controls filamentous actin formation in human glomerular mesangial cells via modulation of profilin expression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Victoriya A Rufanova

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Victoriya A Rufanova1, Anna Alexanian1, Tetsuro Wakatsuki2,3, Andrey Sorokin11Department of Medicine, Division of Nephrology, Kidney Disease Center Milwaukee, WI, USA; 2Department of Physiology, 3Bioengineering and Biotechnology Center, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI, USAAbstract: In glomerular mesangial cell (GMC, important regulators of glomerular filtration, adenovirus-mediated overexpression of calcium regulated nonkinase (CRNK, a dominant interfering calcium-regulated nonreceptor proline-rich tyrosine kinase 2 (Pyk2 construct, inhibited Pyk2 activity and caused enhanced RhoA activity, enriched cortical actin formation at time of cell replating, and reduction of spreading. We aimed to further explore Pyk2 regulation of the actin dynamic during cell spreading as a vital characteristic of GMC function. GMC were infected with adenovirus encoding CRNK or green fluorescent protein (GFP as a control and 48 hours after infection cells were harvested and either re-plated or left in suspension for one hour. De novo adhesion to substrate was significantly decreased after Pyk2 activity inhibition and was further diminished after treatment with Rho-associated kinase inhibitor. Inhibition of Pyk2 was associated with increased filamentous actin formation and a corresponding decrease in globular to filamentous actin ratio during cell spreading. Phosphorylation and expression of cofilin, a RhoA-regulated filamentous actin destabilizing factor, were similar in CRNK-expressing and control GMC. Expression of profilin, an activator of actin polymerization, was enhanced, whereas phosphorylation of Pyk2 and p130Cas was decreased. Our data suggest that Pyk2 signaling controls the filamentous actin formation during cell spreading via upregulation of profilin expression.Keywords: Pyk2, profilin, cell spreading, adhesion, glomerular mesangial cells, p130Cas, actin dynamic, ROCK inhibition

  16. Actin filament dynamics are dominated by rapid growth and severing activity in the Arabidopsis cortical array

    OpenAIRE

    Staiger, Christopher J.; Sheahan, Michael B.; Khurana, Parul; Wang,Xia; McCurdy, David W.; Blanchoin, Laurent

    2009-01-01

    Metazoan cells harness the power of actin dynamics to create cytoskeletal arrays that stimulate protrusions and drive intracellular organelle movements. In plant cells, the actin cytoskeleton is understood to participate in cell elongation; however, a detailed description and molecular mechanism(s) underpinning filament nucleation, growth, and turnover are lacking. Here, we use variable-angle epifluorescence microscopy (VAEM) to examine the organization and dynamics of the cortical cytoskelet...

  17. The "Le Chatelier's principle"-governed response of actin filaments to osmotic stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ito, Tadanao; Yamazaki, Masahito

    2006-07-13

    Actin filaments inhibit osmotic stress-driven water flow across a semipermeable membrane in proportion to the filament concentration (Ito, T.; Zaner, K. S.; Stossel, T. P. Biophys. J. 1987, 51, 745). When the filaments are cross-linked by F-actin binding protein, filamin A, this flow is stopped completely (Ito, T.; Suzuki, A.; Stossel, T. P. Biophys. J. 1992, 61, 1301). No conventional theory accurately accounts for these results. Here, this response is analyzed by formulating the entropy of the system under osmotic stress. Results demonstrate that the response of the actin filaments to osmotic stress is governed by the Le Chatelier's principle, which states that an external interaction that disturbs the equilibrium brings about processes in the body that tend to reduce the effects of this interaction. In the present case, disrupting equilibrium by osmotic stress brings about a reaction that decreases the chemical potential of water in the F-actin solution, reducing the effect of the applied osmotic disturbance. This decrease in the chemical potential of the water in the F-actin solution is caused by an increase in the chemical potential of F-actin, which is induced by isothermal absorption of heat by F-actin aided by work done by osmotic stress. As a result, F-actin has an inhibitory effect on the osmotic stress-driven water flow, and can even completely stop the flow when it is cross-linked. This is the first report demonstrating that the Le Chatelier's principle applies to the reaction of biopolymers against equilibrium disturbances such as osmotic stress.

  18. Liquid-like bundles of crosslinked actin filaments contract without motors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weirich, Kimberly

    The actin cytoskeleton is a dynamic, structural material that drives cellular-scale deformations during processes such as cell migration and division. Motor proteins are responsible for actively driving many deformations by buckling and translocating actin filaments. However, there is evidence that deformations, such as the constriction of the actin bundle that drives the separation of cells during division, can occur without motors, mediated instead by crosslinker proteins. How might crosslinkers, independent of motors, drive contraction of a bundle? Using a model system of purified proteins, we show that crosslinkers, analogous to molecular cohesion, create an effective surface tension that induces bundle contraction. Crosslinked short actin filaments form micron-sized spindle-shaped bundles. Similar to tactoid granules found at the isotropic-nematic phase transition in liquid crystals, these bundles coarsen and coalesce like liquid droplets. In contrast, crosslinked long filaments coarsen into a steady state of bundles that are frozen in a solid-like network. Near the liquid-solid boundary, filaments of intermediate length initially form bundles that spontaneously contract into tactoid droplets. Our results, that crosslinked actin bundles are liquid-like with an effective surface tension, provide evidence for a mechanism of motor-independent contractility in biological materials.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  20. Novel actin filaments from Bacillus thuringiensis form nanotubules for plasmid DNA segregation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Shimin; Narita, Akihiro; Popp, David; Ghoshdastider, Umesh; Lee, Lin Jie; Srinivasan, Ramanujam; Balasubramanian, Mohan K; Oda, Toshiro; Koh, Fujiet; Larsson, Mårten; Robinson, Robert C

    2016-03-01

    Here we report the discovery of a bacterial DNA-segregating actin-like protein (BtParM) from Bacillus thuringiensis, which forms novel antiparallel, two-stranded, supercoiled, nonpolar helical filaments, as determined by electron microscopy. The BtParM filament features of supercoiling and forming antiparallel double-strands are unique within the actin fold superfamily, and entirely different to the straight, double-stranded, polar helical filaments of all other known ParMs and of eukaryotic F-actin. The BtParM polymers show dynamic assembly and subsequent disassembly in the presence of ATP. BtParR, the DNA-BtParM linking protein, stimulated ATP hydrolysis/phosphate release by BtParM and paired two supercoiled BtParM filaments to form a cylinder, comprised of four strands with inner and outer diameters of 57 Å and 145 Å, respectively. Thus, in this prokaryote, the actin fold has evolved to produce a filament system with comparable features to the eukaryotic chromosome-segregating microtubule.

  1. Actin dynamics and competition for myosin monomer govern the sequential amplification of myosin filaments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beach, Jordan R; Bruun, Kyle S; Shao, Lin; Li, Dong; Swider, Zac; Remmert, Kirsten; Zhang, Yingfan; Conti, Mary A; Adelstein, Robert S; Rusan, Nasser M; Betzig, Eric; Hammer, John A

    2017-02-01

    The cellular mechanisms governing non-muscle myosin II (NM2) filament assembly are largely unknown. Using EGFP-NM2A knock-in fibroblasts and multiple super-resolution imaging modalities, we characterized and quantified the sequential amplification of NM2 filaments within lamellae, wherein filaments emanating from single nucleation events continuously partition, forming filament clusters that populate large-scale actomyosin structures deeper in the cell. Individual partitioning events coincide spatially and temporally with the movements of diverging actin fibres, suppression of which inhibits partitioning. These and other data indicate that NM2A filaments are partitioned by the dynamic movements of actin fibres to which they are bound. Finally, we showed that partition frequency and filament growth rate in the lamella depend on MLCK, and that MLCK is competing with centrally active ROCK for a limiting pool of monomer with which to drive lamellar filament assembly. Together, our results provide new insights into the mechanism and spatio-temporal regulation of NM2 filament assembly in cells.

  2. TIRF microscopy analysis of human Cof1, Cof2, and ADF effects on actin filament severing and turnover.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chin, Samantha M; Jansen, Silvia; Goode, Bruce L

    2016-04-24

    Dynamic remodeling and turnover of cellular actin networks requires actin filament severing by actin-depolymerizing factor (ADF)/Cofilin proteins. Mammals express three different ADF/Cofilins (Cof1, Cof2, and ADF), and genetic studies suggest that in vivo they perform both overlapping and unique functions. To gain mechanistic insights into their different roles, we directly compared their G-actin and F-actin binding affinities, and quantified the actin filament severing activities of human Cof1, Cof2, and ADF using in vitro total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy. All three ADF/Cofilins had similar affinities for G-actin and F-actin. However, Cof2 and ADF severed filaments much more efficiently than Cof1 at both lower and higher concentrations and using either muscle or platelet actin. Furthermore, Cof2 and ADF were more effective than Cof1 in promoting "enhanced disassembly" when combined with actin disassembly co-factors Coronin-1B and actin-interacting protein 1 (AIP1), and these differences were observed on both preformed and actively growing filaments. To probe the mechanism underlying these differences, we used multi-wavelength total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy to directly observe Cy3-Cof1 and Cy3-Cof2 interacting with actin filaments in real time during severing. Cof1 and Cof2 each bound to filaments with similar kinetics, yet Cof2 induced severing much more rapidly than Cof1, decreasing the time interval between initial binding on a filament and severing at the same location. These differences in ADF/Cofilin activities and mechanisms may be used in cells to tune filament turnover rates, which can vary widely for different actin structures.

  3. Self-organization of actin filament orientation in the dendritic-nucleation/array-treadmilling model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schaus, Thomas E; Taylor, Edwin W; Borisy, Gary G

    2007-04-24

    The dendritic-nucleation/array-treadmilling model provides a conceptual framework for the generation of the actin network driving motile cells. We have incorporated it into a 2D, stochastic computer model to study lamellipodia via the self-organization of filament orientation patterns. Essential dendritic-nucleation submodels were incorporated, including discretized actin monomer diffusion, Monte-Carlo filament kinetics, and flexible filament and plasma membrane mechanics. Model parameters were estimated from the literature and simulation, providing values for the extent of the leading edge-branching/capping-protective zone (5.4 nm) and the autocatalytic branch rate (0.43/sec). For a given set of parameters, the system evolved to a steady-state filament count and velocity, at which total branching and capping rates were equal only for specific orientations; net capping eliminated others. The standard parameter set evoked a sharp preference for the +/-35 degree filaments seen in lamellipodial electron micrographs, requiring approximately 12 generations of successive branching to adapt to a 15 degree change in protrusion direction. This pattern was robust with respect to membrane surface and bending energies and to actin concentrations but required protection from capping at the leading edge and branching angles >60 degrees. A +70/0/-70 degree pattern was formed with flexible filaments approximately 100 nm or longer and with velocities < approximately 20% of free polymerization rates.

  4. Echinococcus granulosus: Cloning and Functional in Vitro Characterization of an Actin Filament Fragmenting Protein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cortez-Herrera, E; Yamamoto, R R; Rodrigues, J J; Farias, S E; Ferreira, H B; Zaha, A

    2001-04-01

    We report the isolation and characterization of an Echinococcus granulosus gene that codes for a protein with actin filament fragmenting and nucleating activities (EgAFFP). The genomic region corresponding to the EgAFFP gene presents a coding sequence of 1110 bp that is interrupted by eight introns. The EgAFFP deduced amino acid sequence is about 40% homologous to those of several members of the gelsolin family, such as Physarum polycephalum fragmin, Dictyostelium discoideum severin, and Lumbricus terrestris actin modulator. As do other proteins of the same family, EgAFFP presents three repeated domains, each one characterized by internal conserved amino acid motifs. Assays with fluorescence-labeled actin showed that the full-length recombinant EgAFFP effectively binds actin monomers in both a calcium-dependent and calcium-independent manner and also presents actin nucleating and severing activities.

  5. Immunohistochemical observation of actin filaments in epithelial cells encircling the taste pore cavity of rat fungiform papillae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Y Shiba

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Epithelial cells are connected to each other around taste pores in rat fungiform papillae. Cytoskeletal components are responsible for the maintenance of intracellular adhesion, and we investigated the identification and localization of actin filaments around taste pores. On the basis of observations made by immunohistochemical transmission electron microscopy comparing with confocal laser scanning microscopy using actin-lectin double staining, actin filaments were found to be localized, encircling the squeezed taste pore cavity, in epithelial cells a few micrometers below the papilla surface. In addition, these observations suggest that the organization of actin filaments around taste pores might be involved in the constriction of taste pores.

  6. Immunohistochemical observation of actin filaments in epithelial cells encircling the taste pore cavity of rat fungiform papillae

    OpenAIRE

    Y Shiba; Uchida, T.; K Wakida; Komiyama, S; Ohishi, Y.

    2009-01-01

    Epithelial cells are connected to each other around taste pores in rat fungiform papillae. Cytoskeletal components are responsible for the maintenance of intracellular adhesion, and we investigated the identification and localization of actin filaments around taste pores. On the basis of observations made by immunohistochemical transmission electron microscopy comparing with confocal laser scanning microscopy using actin-lectin double staining, actin filaments were found to be localized, enci...

  7. Virulent Burkholderia species mimic host actin polymerases to drive actin-based motility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benanti, Erin L.; Nguyen, Catherine M.; Welch, Matthew D.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Burkholderia pseudomallei and B. mallei are bacterial pathogens that cause melioidosis and glanders, while their close relative B. thailandensis is nonpathogenic. All use the trimeric autotransporter BimA to facilitate actin-based motility, host cell fusion and dissemination. Here, we show that BimA orthologs mimic different host actin-polymerizing proteins. B. thailandensis BimA activates the host Arp2/3 complex. In contrast, B. pseudomallei and B. mallei BimA mimic host Ena/VASP actin polymerases in their ability to nucleate, elongate and bundle filaments by associating with barbed ends, as well as in their use of WH2 motifs and oligomerization for activity. Mechanistic differences among BimA orthologs resulted in distinct actin filament organization and motility parameters, which affected the efficiency of cell fusion during infection. Our results identify bacterial Ena/VASP mimics and reveal that pathogens imitate the full spectrum of host actin-polymerizing pathways, suggesting that mimicry of different polymerization mechanisms influences key parameters of infection. PMID:25860613

  8. The Role of Formin Tails in Actin Nucleation, Processive Elongation, and Filament Bundling*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vizcarra, Christina L.; Bor, Batbileg; Quinlan, Margot E.

    2014-01-01

    Formins are multidomain proteins that assemble actin in a wide variety of biological processes. They both nucleate and remain processively associated with growing filaments, in some cases accelerating filament growth. The well conserved formin homology 1 and 2 domains were originally thought to be solely responsible for these activities. Recently a role in nucleation was identified for the Diaphanous autoinhibitory domain (DAD), which is C-terminal to the formin homology 2 domain. The C-terminal tail of the Drosophila formin Cappuccino (Capu) is conserved among FMN formins but distinct from other formins. It does not have a DAD domain. Nevertheless, we find that Capu-tail plays a role in filament nucleation similar to that described for mDia1 and other formins. Building on this, replacement of Capu-tail with DADs from other formins tunes nucleation activity. Capu-tail has low-affinity interactions with both actin monomers and filaments. Removal of the tail reduces actin filament binding and bundling. Furthermore, when the tail is removed, we find that processivity is compromised. Despite decreased processivity, the elongation rate of filaments is unchanged. Again, replacement of Capu-tail with DADs from other formins tunes the processive association with the barbed end, indicating that this is a general role for formin tails. Our data show a role for the Capu-tail domain in assembling the actin cytoskeleton, largely mediated by electrostatic interactions. Because of its multifunctionality, the formin tail is a candidate for regulation by other proteins during cytoskeletal rearrangements. PMID:25246531

  9. Differential thymosin β10 expression levels and actin filament organization in tumor cell lines with different metastatic potential

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    刘从容; 马春树; 宁钧宇; 由江峰; 廖松林; 郑杰

    2004-01-01

    Background To investigate the differential expression levels of thymosin β10 (Tβ1O) and the corresponding changes of actin filament organization in human tumor cell lines with different metastatic potential.Methods Four groups of nine human tumor cell lines with different metastatic potential were analyzed for the amount of Tβ10 mRNAs by Northern blot and for their peptide expression levels by immunohistochemistry. The filamentous actin (F-actin)was observed by staining of TRITC-phalloidin to detect changes in actin organization. Results In comparison with non-/weakly metastatic counterparts, TβIO was upregulated in highly metastatic human lung cancer, malignant melanoma and breast cancer cell lines. Staining of TRITC-phalloidin revealed less actin bundles, a fuzzy network of shorter filaments and some F-actin aggregates in the highly metastatic tumor cells. Meanwhile, the actin filaments were robust and orderly arranged in the non-/weakly metastatic cancer cell lines.Conclusion Tβ10 levels correlate positively with the metastatic capacity in human tumors currently examined. The increasing metastatic potential of tumor cells is accompanied by a loss of F-actin,poorly arranged actin skeleton organizations and presence of F-actin aggregates. There is a consistent correlation between the elevated TβIO expression and the disrupted actin skeleton.

  10. Light-Induced Movements of Chloroplasts and Nuclei Are Regulated in Both Cp-Actin-Filament-Dependent and -Independent Manners in Arabidopsis thaliana.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Noriyuki Suetsugu

    Full Text Available Light-induced chloroplast movement and attachment to the plasma membrane are dependent on actin filaments. In Arabidopsis thaliana, the short actin filaments on the chloroplast envelope, cp-actin filaments, are essential for chloroplast movement and positioning. Furthermore, cp-actin-filament-mediated chloroplast movement is necessary for the strong-light-induced nuclear avoidance response. The proteins CHLOROPLAST UNUSUAL POSITIONING 1 (CHUP1, KINESIN-LIKE PROTEIN FOR ACTIN-BASED CHLOROPLAST MOVEMENT 1 (KAC1 and KAC2 are required for the generation and/or maintenance of cp-actin filaments in Arabidopsis. In land plants, CHUP1 and KAC family proteins play pivotal roles in the proper movement of chloroplasts and their attachment to the plasma membrane. Here, we report similar but distinct phenotypes in chloroplast and nuclear photorelocation movements between chup1 and kac1kac2 mutants. Measurement of chloroplast photorelocation movement indicated that kac1kac2, but not chup1, exhibited a clear strong-light-induced increase in leaf transmittance changes. The chloroplast movement in kac1kac2 depended on phototropin 2, CHUP1 and two other regulators for cp-actin filaments, PLASTID MOVEMENT IMPAIRED 1 and THRUMIN 1. Furthermore, kac1kac2 retained a weak but significant nuclear avoidance response although chup1 displayed a severe defect in the nuclear avoidance response. The kac1kac2chup1 triple mutant was completely defective in both chloroplast and nuclear avoidance responses. These results indicate that CHUP1 and the KACs function somewhat independently, but interdependently mediate both chloroplast and nuclear photorelocation movements.

  11. Light-Induced Movements of Chloroplasts and Nuclei Are Regulated in Both Cp-Actin-Filament-Dependent and -Independent Manners in Arabidopsis thaliana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suetsugu, Noriyuki; Higa, Takeshi; Gotoh, Eiji; Wada, Masamitsu

    2016-01-01

    Light-induced chloroplast movement and attachment to the plasma membrane are dependent on actin filaments. In Arabidopsis thaliana, the short actin filaments on the chloroplast envelope, cp-actin filaments, are essential for chloroplast movement and positioning. Furthermore, cp-actin-filament-mediated chloroplast movement is necessary for the strong-light-induced nuclear avoidance response. The proteins CHLOROPLAST UNUSUAL POSITIONING 1 (CHUP1), KINESIN-LIKE PROTEIN FOR ACTIN-BASED CHLOROPLAST MOVEMENT 1 (KAC1) and KAC2 are required for the generation and/or maintenance of cp-actin filaments in Arabidopsis. In land plants, CHUP1 and KAC family proteins play pivotal roles in the proper movement of chloroplasts and their attachment to the plasma membrane. Here, we report similar but distinct phenotypes in chloroplast and nuclear photorelocation movements between chup1 and kac1kac2 mutants. Measurement of chloroplast photorelocation movement indicated that kac1kac2, but not chup1, exhibited a clear strong-light-induced increase in leaf transmittance changes. The chloroplast movement in kac1kac2 depended on phototropin 2, CHUP1 and two other regulators for cp-actin filaments, PLASTID MOVEMENT IMPAIRED 1 and THRUMIN 1. Furthermore, kac1kac2 retained a weak but significant nuclear avoidance response although chup1 displayed a severe defect in the nuclear avoidance response. The kac1kac2chup1 triple mutant was completely defective in both chloroplast and nuclear avoidance responses. These results indicate that CHUP1 and the KACs function somewhat independently, but interdependently mediate both chloroplast and nuclear photorelocation movements.

  12. Direct observation of motion of single F-actin filaments in the presence of myosin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yanagida, Toshio; Nakase, Michiyuki; Nishiyama, Katsumi; Oosawa, Fumio

    1984-01-01

    Actin is found in almost all kinds of non-muscle cells where it is thought to have an important role in cell motility. A proper understanding of that role will only be possible when reliable in vitro systems are available for investigating the interaction of cellular actin and myosin. A start has been made on several systems1-4, most recently by Sheetz and Spudich who demonstrated unidirectional movement of HMM-coated beads along F-actin cables on arrays of chloroplasts exposed by dissection of a Nitella cell5. As an alternative approach, we report here the direct observation by fluorescence microscopy of the movements of single F-actin filaments interacting with soluble myosin fragments energized by Mg2+-ATP.

  13. The effect of jasplakinolide on the thermodynamic properties of ADP.BeF(x) bound actin filaments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kardos, Roland; Vig, Andrea; Orbán, József; Hild, Gábor; Nyitrai, Miklós; Lőrinczy, Dénes

    2007-10-25

    The effect of BeF(x) and a natural toxin (jasplakinolide) was examined on the thermal stability of actin filaments by using differential scanning calorimetry. The phosphate analogue beryllium fluoride shifted the melting temperature of actin filaments (67.4 degrees C) to 83.7 degrees C indicating that the filaments were thermodynamically more stable in their complex with ADP.BeF(x). A similar tendency was observed when the jasplakinolide was used in the absence of BeF(x). When both the ADP.BeF(x) and the jasplakinolide bound to the actin filaments their collective effect was similar to that observed with ADP.BeF(x) or jasplakinolide alone. These results suggested that ADP.BeF(x) and jasplakinolide probably stabilize the actin filaments by similar molecular mechanisms.

  14. Structures of actin-like ParM filaments show architecture of plasmid-segregating spindles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bharat, Tanmay A M; Murshudov, Garib N; Sachse, Carsten; Löwe, Jan

    2015-07-02

    Active segregation of Escherichia coli low-copy-number plasmid R1 involves formation of a bipolar spindle made of left-handed double-helical actin-like ParM filaments. ParR links the filaments with centromeric parC plasmid DNA, while facilitating the addition of subunits to ParM filaments. Growing ParMRC spindles push sister plasmids to the cell poles. Here, using modern electron cryomicroscopy methods, we investigate the structures and arrangements of ParM filaments in vitro and in cells, revealing at near-atomic resolution how subunits and filaments come together to produce the simplest known mitotic machinery. To understand the mechanism of dynamic instability, we determine structures of ParM filaments in different nucleotide states. The structure of filaments bound to the ATP analogue AMPPNP is determined at 4.3 Å resolution and refined. The ParM filament structure shows strong longitudinal interfaces and weaker lateral interactions. Also using electron cryomicroscopy, we reconstruct ParM doublets forming antiparallel spindles. Finally, with whole-cell electron cryotomography, we show that doublets are abundant in bacterial cells containing low-copy-number plasmids with the ParMRC locus, leading to an asynchronous model of R1 plasmid segregation.

  15. Drosophila cyfip regulates synaptic development and endocytosis by suppressing filamentous actin assembly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Lu; Wang, Dan; Wang, Qifu; Rodal, Avital A; Zhang, Yong Q

    2013-04-01

    The formation of synapses and the proper construction of neural circuits depend on signaling pathways that regulate cytoskeletal structure and dynamics. After the mutual recognition of a growing axon and its target, multiple signaling pathways are activated that regulate cytoskeletal dynamics to determine the morphology and strength of the connection. By analyzing Drosophila mutations in the cytoplasmic FMRP interacting protein Cyfip, we demonstrate that this component of the WAVE complex inhibits the assembly of filamentous actin (F-actin) and thereby regulates key aspects of synaptogenesis. Cyfip regulates the distribution of F-actin filaments in presynaptic neuromuscular junction (NMJ) terminals. At cyfip mutant NMJs, F-actin assembly was accelerated, resulting in shorter NMJs, more numerous satellite boutons, and reduced quantal content. Increased synaptic vesicle size and failure to maintain excitatory junctional potential amplitudes under high-frequency stimulation in cyfip mutants indicated an endocytic defect. cyfip mutants exhibited upregulated bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) signaling, a major growth-promoting pathway known to be attenuated by endocytosis at the Drosophila NMJ. We propose that Cyfip regulates synapse development and endocytosis by inhibiting actin assembly.

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

    CERN Document Server

    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...

  17. ATP-dependent regulation of actin monomer-filament equilibrium by cyclase-associated protein and ADF/cofilin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nomura, Kazumi; Ono, Shoichiro

    2013-07-15

    CAP (cyclase-associated protein) is a conserved regulator of actin filament dynamics. In the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, CAS-1 is an isoform of CAP that is expressed in striated muscle and regulates sarcomeric actin assembly. In the present study, we report that CAS-2, a second CAP isoform in C. elegans, attenuates the actin-monomer-sequestering effect of ADF (actin depolymerizing factor)/cofilin to increase the steady-state levels of actin filaments in an ATP-dependent manner. CAS-2 binds to actin monomers without a strong preference for either ATP- or ADP-actin. CAS-2 strongly enhances the exchange of actin-bound nucleotides even in the presence of UNC-60A, a C. elegans ADF/cofilin that inhibits nucleotide exchange. UNC-60A induces the depolymerization of actin filaments and sequesters actin monomers, whereas CAS-2 reverses the monomer-sequestering effect of UNC-60A in the presence of ATP, but not in the presence of only ADP or the absence of ATP or ADP. A 1:100 molar ratio of CAS-2 to UNC-60A is sufficient to increase actin filaments. CAS-2 has two independent actin-binding sites in its N- and C-terminal halves, and the C-terminal half is necessary and sufficient for the observed activities of the full-length CAS-2. These results suggest that CAS-2 (CAP) and UNC-60A (ADF/cofilin) are important in the ATP-dependent regulation of the actin monomer-filament equilibrium.

  18. Association of hepatitis C virus replication complexes with microtubules and actin filaments is dependent on the interaction of NS3 and NS5A.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lai, Chao-Kuen; Jeng, King-Song; Machida, Keigo; Lai, Michael M C

    2008-09-01

    The hepatitis C virus (HCV) RNA replication complex (RC), which is composed of viral nonstructural (NS) proteins and host cellular proteins, replicates the viral RNA genome in association with intracellular membranes. Two viral NS proteins, NS3 and NS5A, are essential elements of the RC. Here, by using immunoprecipitation and fluorescence resonance energy transfer assays, we demonstrated that NS3 and NS5A interact with tubulin and actin. Furthermore, immunofluorescence microscopy and electron microscopy revealed that HCV RCs were aligned along microtubules and actin filaments in both HCV replicon cells and HCV-infected cells. In addition, the movement of RCs was inhibited when microtubules or actin filaments were depolymerized by colchicine and cytochalasin B, respectively. Based on our observations, we propose that microtubules and actin filaments provide the tracks for the movement of HCV RCs to other regions in the cell, and the molecular interactions between RCs and microtubules, or RCs and actin filaments, are mediated by NS3 and NS5A.

  19. An Arabidopsis Class Ⅱ Formin, AtFH19, Nucleates Actin Assembly, Binds to the Barbed End of Actin Filaments, and Antagonizes the Effect of AtFH1 on Actin Dynamics

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yiyan Zheng; Haibo Xin; Jinxing Lin; Chun-Ming Liu; Shanjin Huang

    2012-01-01

    Formin is a major protein responsible for regulating the nucleation of actin filaments,and as such,it permits the cell to control where and when to assemble actin arrays.It is encoded by a multigene family comprising 21 members in Arabidopsis thaliana.The Arabidopsis formins can be separated into two phylogenetically-distinct classes:there are 11 class Ⅰ formins and 10 class Ⅱ formins.Significant questions remain unanswered regarding the molecular mechanism of actin nucleation and elongation stimulated by each formin isovariant,and how the different isovariants coordinate to regulate actin dynamics in cells.Here,we characterize a class Ⅱ formin,AtFH19,biochemically.We found that AtFH19 retains all general properties of the formin family,including nucleation and barbed end capping activity.It can also generate actin filaments from a pool of actin monomers bound to profilin.However,both the nucleation and barbed end capping activities of AtFH19 are less efficient compared to those of another well-characterized formin,AtFH1.Interestingly,AtFH19 FH1FH2 competes with AtFH1 FH1FH2 in binding actin filament barbed ends,and inhibits the effect of AtFH1 FH1FH2 on actin.We thus propose a mechanism in which two quantitatively different formins coordinate to regulate actin dynamics by competing for actin filament barbed ends.

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    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

  1. Structural Analysis of Human Cofilin 2/Filamentous Actin Assemblies: Atomic-Resolution Insights from Magic Angle Spinning NMR Spectroscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yehl, Jenna; Kudryashova, Elena; Reisler, Emil; Kudryashov, Dmitri; Polenova, Tatyana

    2017-01-01

    Cellular actin dynamics is an essential element of numerous cellular processes, such as cell motility, cell division and endocytosis. Actin’s involvement in these processes is mediated by many actin-binding proteins, among which the cofilin family plays unique and essential role in accelerating actin treadmilling in filamentous actin (F-actin) in a nucleotide-state dependent manner. Cofilin preferentially interacts with older filaments by recognizing time-dependent changes in F-actin structure associated with the hydrolysis of ATP and release of inorganic phosphate (Pi) from the nucleotide cleft of actin. The structure of cofilin on F-actin and the details of the intermolecular interface remain poorly understood at atomic resolution. Here we report atomic-level characterization by magic angle spinning (MAS) NMR of the muscle isoform of human cofilin 2 (CFL2) bound to F-actin. We demonstrate that resonance assignments for the majority of atoms are readily accomplished and we derive the intermolecular interface between CFL2 and F-actin. The MAS NMR approach reported here establishes the foundation for atomic-resolution characterization of a broad range of actin-associated proteins bound to F-actin. PMID:28303963

  2. Two kinesin-like proteins mediate actin-based chloroplast movement in Arabidopsis thaliana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suetsugu, Noriyuki; Yamada, Noboru; Kagawa, Takatoshi; Yonekura, Hisashi; Uyeda, Taro Q P; Kadota, Akeo; Wada, Masamitsu

    2010-05-11

    Organelle movement is essential for efficient cellular function in eukaryotes. Chloroplast photorelocation movement is important for plant survival as well as for efficient photosynthesis. Chloroplast movement generally is actin dependent and mediated by blue light receptor phototropins. In Arabidopsis thaliana, phototropins mediate chloroplast movement by regulating short actin filaments on chloroplasts (cp-actin filaments), and the chloroplast outer envelope protein CHUP1 is necessary for cp-actin filament accumulation. However, other factors involved in cp-actin filament regulation during chloroplast movement remain to be determined. Here, we report that two kinesin-like proteins, KAC1 and KAC2, are essential for chloroplasts to move and anchor to the plasma membrane. A kac1 mutant showed severely impaired chloroplast accumulation and slow avoidance movement. A kac1kac2 double mutant completely lacked chloroplast photorelocation movement and showed detachment of chloroplasts from the plasma membrane. KAC motor domains are similar to those of the kinesin-14 subfamily (such as Ncd and Kar3) but do not have detectable microtubule-binding activity. The C-terminal domain of KAC1 could interact with F-actin in vitro. Instead of regulating microtubules, KAC proteins mediate chloroplast movement via cp-actin filaments. We conclude that plants have evolved a unique mechanism to regulate actin-based organelle movement using kinesin-like proteins.

  3. Impact of actin filament stabilization on adult hippocampal and olfactory bulb neurogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kronenberg, Golo; Gertz, Karen; Baldinger, Tina; Kirste, Imke; Eckart, Sarah; Yildirim, Ferah; Ji, Shengbo; Heuser, Isabella; Schröck, Helmut; Hörtnagl, Heide; Sohr, Reinhard; Djoufack, Pierre Chryso; Jüttner, René; Glass, Rainer; Przesdzing, Ingo; Kumar, Jitender; Freyer, Dorette; Hellweg, Rainer; Kettenmann, Helmut; Fink, Klaus Benno; Endres, Matthias

    2010-03-03

    Rearrangement of the actin cytoskeleton is essential for dynamic cellular processes. Decreased actin turnover and rigidity of cytoskeletal structures have been associated with aging and cell death. Gelsolin is a Ca(2+)-activated actin-severing protein that is widely expressed throughout the adult mammalian brain. Here, we used gelsolin-deficient (Gsn(-/-)) mice as a model system for actin filament stabilization. In Gsn(-/-) mice, emigration of newly generated cells from the subventricular zone into the olfactory bulb was slowed. In vitro, gelsolin deficiency did not affect proliferation or neuronal differentiation of adult neural progenitors cells (NPCs) but resulted in retarded migration. Surprisingly, hippocampal neurogenesis was robustly induced by gelsolin deficiency. The ability of NPCs to intrinsically sense excitatory activity and thereby implement coupling between network activity and neurogenesis has recently been established. Depolarization-induced [Ca(2+)](i) increases and exocytotic neurotransmitter release were enhanced in Gsn(-/-) synaptosomes. Importantly, treatment of Gsn(-/-) synaptosomes with mycotoxin cytochalasin D, which, like gelsolin, produces actin disassembly, decreased enhanced Ca(2+) influx and subsequent exocytotic norepinephrine release to wild-type levels. Similarly, depolarization-induced glutamate release from Gsn(-/-) brain slices was increased. Furthermore, increased hippocampal neurogenesis in Gsn(-/-) mice was associated with a special microenvironment characterized by enhanced density of perfused vessels, increased regional cerebral blood flow, and increased endothelial nitric oxide synthase (NOS-III) expression in hippocampus. Together, reduced filamentous actin turnover in presynaptic terminals causes increased Ca(2+) influx and, subsequently, elevated exocytotic neurotransmitter release acting on neural progenitors. Increased neurogenesis in Gsn(-/-) hippocampus is associated with a special vascular niche for neurogenesis.

  4. Short actin-based mechanism for light-directed chloroplast movement in Arabidopsis

    OpenAIRE

    Kadota, Akeo; Yamada, Noboru; Suetsugu, Noriyuki; Hirose, Mana; Saito, Chieko; Shoda, Keiko; Ichikawa, Satoshi; Kagawa, Takatoshi; Nakano, Akihiko; Wada, Masamitsu

    2009-01-01

    Organelle movement is essential for proper function of living cells. In plants, these movements generally depend on actin filaments, but the underlying mechanism is unknown. Here, in Arabidopsis, we identify associations of short actin filaments along the chloroplast periphery on the plasma membrane side associated with chloroplast photorelocation and anchoring to the plasma membrane. We have termed these chloroplast-actin filaments (cp-actin filaments). Cp-actin filaments emerge from the chl...

  5. Using cell structures to develop functional nanomaterials and nanostructures--case studies of actin filaments and microtubules.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Kevin Chia-Wen; Yang, Chung-Yao; Cheng, Chao-Min

    2014-04-25

    This article is based on the continued development of biologically relevant elements (i.e., actin filaments and microtubules in living cells) as building blocks to create functional nanomaterials and nanostructures that can then be used to manufacture nature-inspired small-scale devices or systems. Here, we summarize current progress in the field and focus specifically on processes characterized by (1) robustness and ease of use, (2) inexpensiveness, and (3) potential expandability to mass production. This article, we believe, will provide scientists and engineers with a more comprehensive understanding of how to mine biological materials and natural design features to construct functional materials and devices.

  6. Calcium-induced movement of troponin-I relative to actin in skeletal muscle thin filaments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tao, T; Gong, B J; Leavis, P C

    1990-03-16

    The role of troponin-I (the inhibitory subunit of troponin) in the regulation by Ca2+ of skeletal muscle contraction was investigated with resonance energy transfer and photo cross-linking techniques. The effect of Ca2+ on the proximity of troponin-I to actin in reconstituted rabbit skeletal thin filaments was determined. The distance between the cysteine residue at position 133 (Cys133) of troponin-I and Cys374 of actin increases by approximately 15 angstroms on binding of Ca2+ to troponin-C. Also, troponin-I labeled at Cys133 with benzophenone-4-maleimide could be photo cross-linked to actin in the absence of Ca2+, but not in its presence. These results suggest that troponin-I is attached to actin in the Ca2(+)-free or relaxed state of muscle, and that it detaches from actin on Ca2+ activation of contraction. Thus, troponin-I may function as a Ca2(+)-dependent molecular switch in regulation of skeletal muscle contraction.

  7. Substrate, focal adhesions, and actin filaments: a mechanical unit with a weak spot for mechanosensitive proteins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirchenbüchler, David; Born, Simone; Kirchgeßner, Norbert; Houben, Sebastian; Hoffmann, Bernd; Merkel, Rudolf

    2010-05-01

    Mechanosensing is a vital prerequisite for dynamic remodeling of focal adhesions and cytoskeletal structures upon substrate deformation. For example, tissue formation, directed cell orientation or cell differentiation are regulated by such mechanosensing processes. Focal adhesions and the actin cytoskeleton are believed to be involved in these processes, but where mechanosensing molecules are located and how elastic substrate, focal adhesions and the cytoskeleton couple with each other upon substrate deformation still remains obscure. To approach these questions we have developed a sensitive method to apply defined spatially decaying deformation fields to cells cultivated on ultrasoft elastic substrates and to accurately quantify the resulting displacements of the actin cytoskeleton, focal adhesions, as well as the substrate. Displacement fields were recorded in live cell microscopy by tracking either signals from fluorescent proteins or marker particles in the substrate. As model cell type we used myofibroblasts. These cells are characterized by highly stable adhesion and force generating structures but are still able to detect mechanical signals with high sensitivity. We found a rigid connection between substrate and focal adhesions. Furthermore, stress fibers were found to be barely extendable almost over their whole lengths. Plastic deformation took place only at the very ends of actin filaments close to focal adhesions. As a result, this area became elongated without extension of existing actin filaments by polymerization. Both ends of the stress fibers were mechanically coupled with detectable plastic deformations on either site. Interestingly, traction force dependent substrate deformation fields remained mostly unaffected even when stress fiber elongations were released. These data argue for a location of mechanosensing proteins at the ends of actin stress fibers and describe, except for these domains, the whole system to be relatively rigid for tensile

  8. Drebrin-like protein DBN-1 is a sarcomere component that stabilizes actin filaments during muscle contraction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Butkevich, Eugenia; Bodensiek, Kai; Fakhri, Nikta; von Roden, Kerstin; Schaap, Iwan A T; Majoul, Irina; Schmidt, Christoph F; Klopfenstein, Dieter R

    2015-07-06

    Actin filament organization and stability in the sarcomeres of muscle cells are critical for force generation. Here we identify and functionally characterize a Caenorhabditis elegans drebrin-like protein DBN-1 as a novel constituent of the muscle contraction machinery. In vitro, DBN-1 exhibits actin filament binding and bundling activity. In vivo, DBN-1 is expressed in body wall muscles of C. elegans. During the muscle contraction cycle, DBN-1 alternates location between myosin- and actin-rich regions of the sarcomere. In contracted muscle, DBN-1 is accumulated at I-bands where it likely regulates proper spacing of α-actinin and tropomyosin and protects actin filaments from the interaction with ADF/cofilin. DBN-1 loss of function results in the partial depolymerization of F-actin during muscle contraction. Taken together, our data show that DBN-1 organizes the muscle contractile apparatus maintaining the spatial relationship between actin-binding proteins such as α-actinin, tropomyosin and ADF/cofilin and possibly strengthening actin filaments by bundling.

  9. Mammalian CAP (Cyclase-associated protein) in the world of cell migration: Roles in actin filament dynamics and beyond.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Guo-Lei; Zhang, Haitao; Field, Jeffrey

    2014-01-01

    Cell migration is essential for a variety of fundamental biological processes such as embryonic development, wound healing, and immune response. Aberrant cell migration also underlies pathological conditions such as cancer metastasis, in which morphological transformation promotes spreading of cancer to new sites. Cell migration is driven by actin dynamics, which is the repeated cycling of monomeric actin (G-actin) into and out of filamentous actin (F-actin). CAP (Cyclase-associated protein, also called Srv2) is a conserved actin-regulatory protein, which is implicated in cell motility and the invasiveness of human cancers. It cooperates with another actin regulatory protein, cofilin, to accelerate actin dynamics. Hence, knockdown of CAP1 slows down actin filament turnover, which in most cells leads to reduced cell motility. However, depletion of CAP1 in HeLa cells, while causing reduction in dynamics, actually led to increased cell motility. The increases in motility are likely through activation of cell adhesion signals through an inside-out signaling. The potential to activate adhesion signaling competes with the negative effect of CAP1 depletion on actin dynamics, which would reduce cell migration. In this commentary, we provide a brief overview of the roles of mammalian CAP1 in cell migration, and highlight a likely mechanism underlying the activation of cell adhesion signaling and elevated motility caused by depletion of CAP1.

  10. The role of cyclase-associated protein in regulating actin filament dynamics - more than a monomer-sequestration factor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ono, Shoichiro

    2013-08-01

    Dynamic reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton is fundamental to a number of cell biological events. A variety of actin-regulatory proteins modulate polymerization and depolymerization of actin and contribute to actin cytoskeletal reorganization. Cyclase-associated protein (CAP) is a conserved actin-monomer-binding protein that has been studied for over 20 years. Early studies have shown that CAP sequesters actin monomers; recent studies, however, have revealed more active roles of CAP in actin filament dynamics. CAP enhances the recharging of actin monomers with ATP antagonistically to ADF/cofilin, and also promotes the severing of actin filaments in cooperation with ADF/cofilin. Self-oligomerization and binding to other proteins regulate activities and localization of CAP. CAP has crucial roles in cell signaling, development, vesicle trafficking, cell migration and muscle sarcomere assembly. This Commentary discusses the recent advances in our understanding of the functions of CAP and its implications as an important regulator of actin cytoskeletal dynamics, which are involved in various cellular activities.

  11. Brownian Ratchets in Biophysics: from Diffusing Phospholipids to Polymerizing Actin Filaments

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Oudenaarden, Alexander

    2000-03-01

    In the 'Feynman Lectures on Physics' Feynman introduces a mechanical ratchet and pawl subjected to thermal fluctuations to demonstrate the impossibility to violate the second law of thermodynamics. Since this introduction the Brownian ratchet has evolved from Gedanken experiments to real experiments in the interdisciplinary sciences such as biophysics and biochemistry. In this symposium I will present two experiments in which the concept Brownian ratchet is of key importance. The first experiment addresses a so-called geometrical Brownian ratchet [1]. This ratchet consists of a two-dimensional microfabricated periodic array of asymmetric diffusion barriers. As an experimental realization of a two-dimensional fluid of Brownian particles, a bilayer of phospholipid molecules is used. I will demonstrate that the geometrical Brownian ratchet can be used as a molecular sieve to separate mixtures of membrane molecules without the need to extract them from the membrane. In the second experiment I explore the spontaneous symmetry breaking of polymerizing actin networks [2]. Small submicron size beads coated uniformly with a protein that catalyzes actin polymerization, are initially surrounded by a symmetrical cloud of actin filaments. This symmetry can be broken spontaneously after which the beads undergo directional motion with constant velocity. I will present a simple stochastic theory, in which each filament is modeled as an elastic Brownian ratchet that qualitatively reproduces the experimental results. The presence of the bead couples the dynamics of different filaments which results in a complex collective system of interacting Brownian ratchets that exhibits an emergent symmetry breaking behavior. [1] A. van Oudenaarden and S. G. Boxer, Science 285, 1046 (1999). [2] A. van Oudenaarden and J. A. Theriot, Nature Cell Biology 1, 493 (1999).

  12. Dynamics of actin monomers assembled into long filaments%肌动蛋白纤维的组装动力学∗

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    郭坤琨; 谢仪

    2016-01-01

    We investigate the dynamics of actin monomers that are assembled into long filaments via the particle-based Brownian dynamics simulations. In order to study the dynamics of long filaments containing up to several hundred protomers, a coarse-grained model for actin polymerization involving several simplifications is used. In order to overcome the large separation of time scales between the diffusive motion of the free monomers and the relatively slow polymerized and depolymerized processes at the two ends of the filaments, all polymerized and depolymerized rates are rescaled by a dimensionless parameter. Actin protomers within a filament generally possess three nucleotide states corresponding to a bound adenosine triphosphate (ATP), adenosine diphosphate with inorganic phosphate (ADP. Pi), and ADP molecules in the presence of ATP hydrolysis. Here in this paper, single nucleotide state and two nucleotide states of actin protomers are described by the simplified theoretical model, giving the dependence of the growth rate on actin concentration. The simplest case where all protomers are identical, is provided by the assembly of ADP-actins. In the simulations, the growth rate is found to increase linearly with free monomer concentration, which agrees quantitatively with in vitro experimental result. These surprised phenomena observed in the experiments, such as treadmilling processes and length diffusion of actin filaments at the steady state, are presented in detail by Brownian dynamics simulations. For free actin concentrations close to the critical concentration, cT≈ccr,T, the filaments undergo treadmilling, that is, they grow at the barbed end and shrink at the pointed end, leading to the directed translational motion of the filament. In the absence of ATP hydrolysis, the functional dependence of a length diffusion constant on ADP-actin monomer concentration implies that a length diffusion constant is found to increase linearly with ADP-actin monomer concentration

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    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.

  14. Srv2/cyclase-associated protein forms hexameric shurikens that directly catalyze actin filament severing by cofilin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaudhry, Faisal; Breitsprecher, Dennis; Little, Kristin; Sharov, Grigory; Sokolova, Olga; Goode, Bruce L

    2013-01-01

    Actin filament severing is critical for the dynamic turnover of cellular actin networks. Cofilin severs filaments, but additional factors may be required to increase severing efficiency in vivo. Srv2/cyclase-associated protein (CAP) is a widely expressed protein with a role in binding and recycling actin monomers ascribed to domains in its C-terminus (C-Srv2). In this paper, we report a new biochemical and cellular function for Srv2/CAP in directly catalyzing cofilin-mediated severing of filaments. This function is mediated by its N-terminal half (N-Srv2), and is physically and genetically separable from C-Srv2 activities. Using dual-color total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy, we determined that N-Srv2 stimulates filament disassembly by increasing the frequency of cofilin-mediated severing without affecting cofilin binding to filaments. Structural analysis shows that N-Srv2 forms novel hexameric star-shaped structures, and disrupting oligomerization impairs N-Srv2 activities and in vivo function. Further, genetic analysis shows that the combined activities of N-Srv2 and Aip1 are essential in vivo. These observations define a novel mechanism by which the combined activities of cofilin and Srv2/CAP lead to enhanced filament severing and support an emerging view that actin disassembly is controlled not by cofilin alone, but by a more complex set of factors working in concert.

  15. Actin filaments are involved in the maintenance of Golgi cisternae morphology and intra-Golgi pH.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lázaro-Diéguez, Francisco; Jiménez, Nuria; Barth, Holger; Koster, Abraham J; Renau-Piqueras, Jaime; Llopis, Juan L; Burger, Koert N J; Egea, Gustavo

    2006-12-01

    Here we examine the contribution of actin dynamics to the architecture and pH of the Golgi complex. To this end, we have used toxins that depolymerize (cytochalasin D, latrunculin B, mycalolide B, and Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin) or stabilize (jasplakinolide) filamentous actin. When various clonal cell lines were examined by epifluorescence microscopy, all of these actin toxins induced compaction of the Golgi complex. However, ultrastructural analysis by transmission electron microscopy and electron tomography/three-dimensional modelling of the Golgi complex showed that F-actin depolymerization first induces perforation/fragmentation and severe swelling of Golgi cisternae, which leads to a completely disorganized structure. In contrast, F-actin stabilization results only in cisternae perforation/fragmentation. Concomitantly to actin depolymerization-induced cisternae swelling and disorganization, the intra-Golgi pH significantly increased. Similar ultrastructural and Golgi pH alkalinization were observed in cells treated with the vacuolar H+ -ATPases inhibitors bafilomycin A1 and concanamycin A. Overall, these results suggest that actin filaments are implicated in the preservation of the flattened shape of Golgi cisternae. This maintenance seems to be mediated by the regulation of the state of F-actin assembly on the Golgi pH homeostasis.

  16. Actin-based motility propelled by molecular motors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Upadyayula, Sai Pramod; Rangarajan, Murali

    2012-09-01

    Actin-based motility of Listeria monocytogenes propelled by filament end-tracking molecular motors has been simulated. Such systems may act as potential nanoscale actuators and shuttles useful in sorting and sensing biomolecules. Filaments are modeled as three-dimensional elastic springs distributed on one end of the capsule and persistently attached to the motile bacterial surface through an end-tracking motor complex. Filament distribution is random, and monomer concentration decreases linearly as a function of position on the bacterial surface. Filament growth rate increases with monomer concentration but decreases with the extent of compression. The growing filaments exert push-pull forces on the bacterial surface. In addition to forces, torques arise due to two factors—distribution of motors on the bacterial surface, and coupling of torsion upon growth due to the right-handed helicity of F-actin—causing the motile object to undergo simultaneous translation and rotation. The trajectory of the bacterium is simulated by performing a force and torque balance on the bacterium. All simulations use a fixed value of torsion. Simulations show strong alignment of the filaments and the long axis of the bacterium along the direction of motion. In the absence of torsion, the bacterial surface essentially moves along the direction of the long axis. When a small amount of the torsion is applied to the bacterial surface, the bacterium is seen to move in right-handed helical trajectories, consistent with experimental observations.

  17. Zyxin regulates endothelial von Willebrand factor secretion by reorganizing actin filaments around exocytic granules

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Xiaofan; Li, Pin; Yang, Zhenghao; Huang, Xiaoshuai; Wei, Guoqin; Sun, Yujie; Kang, Xuya; Hu, Xueting; Deng, Qiuping; Chen, Liangyi; He, Aibin; Huo, Yingqing; Li, Dong; Betzig, Eric; Luo, Jincai

    2017-01-01

    Endothelial exocytosis of Weibel–Palade body (WPB) is one of the first lines of defence against vascular injury. However, the mechanisms that control WPB exocytosis in the final stages (including the docking, priming and fusion of granules) are poorly understood. Here we show that the focal adhesion protein zyxin is crucial in this process. Zyxin downregulation inhibits the secretion of von Willebrand factor (VWF), the most abundant cargo in WPBs, from human primary endothelial cells (ECs) induced by cAMP agonists. Zyxin-deficient mice exhibit impaired epinephrine-stimulated VWF release, prolonged bleeding time and thrombosis, largely due to defective endothelial secretion of VWF. Using live-cell super-resolution microscopy, we visualize previously unappreciated reorganization of pre-existing actin filaments around WPBs before fusion, dependent on zyxin and an interaction with the actin crosslinker α-actinin. Our findings identify zyxin as a physiological regulator of endothelial exocytosis through reorganizing local actin network in the final stage of exocytosis. PMID:28256511

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  20. Direct observation of the uncapping of capping protein-capped actin filaments by CARMIL homology domain 3.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujiwara, Ikuko; Remmert, Kirsten; Hammer, John A

    2010-01-22

    Bulk solution assays have shown that the isolated CARMIL homology 3 (CAH3) domain from mouse and Acanthamoeba CARMIL rapidly and potently restores actin polymerization when added to actin filaments previously capped with capping protein (CP). To demonstrate this putative uncapping activity directly, we used total internal reflection microscopy to observe single, CP-capped actin filaments before and after the addition of the CAH3 domain from mouse CARMIL-1 (mCAH3). The addition of mCAH3 rapidly restored the polymerization of individual capped filaments, consistent with uncapping. To verify uncapping, filaments were capped with recombinant mouse CP tagged with monomeric green fluorescent protein (mGFP-CP). Restoration of polymerization upon the addition of mCAH3 was immediately preceded by the complete dissociation of mGFP-CP from the filament end, confirming the CAH3-driven uncapping mechanism. Quantitative analyses showed that the percentage of capped filaments that uncapped increased as the concentration of mCAH3 was increased, reaching a maximum of approximately 90% at approximately 250 nm mCAH3. Moreover, the time interval between mCAH3 addition and uncapping decreased as the concentration of mCAH3 increased, with the half-time of CP at the barbed end decreasing from approximately 30 min without mCAH3 to approximately 10 s with a saturating amount of mCAH3. Finally, using mCAH3 tagged with mGFP, we obtained direct evidence that the complex of CP and mCAH3 has a small but measurable affinity for the barbed end, as inferred from previous studies and kinetic modeling. We conclude that the isolated CAH3 domain of CARMIL (and presumably the intact molecule as well) possesses the ability to uncap CP-capped actin filaments.

  1. Direct Observation of the Uncapping of Capping Protein-capped Actin Filaments by CARMIL Homology Domain 3*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujiwara, Ikuko; Remmert, Kirsten; Hammer, John A.

    2010-01-01

    Bulk solution assays have shown that the isolated CARMIL homology 3 (CAH3) domain from mouse and Acanthamoeba CARMIL rapidly and potently restores actin polymerization when added to actin filaments previously capped with capping protein (CP). To demonstrate this putative uncapping activity directly, we used total internal reflection microscopy to observe single, CP-capped actin filaments before and after the addition of the CAH3 domain from mouse CARMIL-1 (mCAH3). The addition of mCAH3 rapidly restored the polymerization of individual capped filaments, consistent with uncapping. To verify uncapping, filaments were capped with recombinant mouse CP tagged with monomeric green fluorescent protein (mGFP-CP). Restoration of polymerization upon the addition of mCAH3 was immediately preceded by the complete dissociation of mGFP-CP from the filament end, confirming the CAH3-driven uncapping mechanism. Quantitative analyses showed that the percentage of capped filaments that uncapped increased as the concentration of mCAH3 was increased, reaching a maximum of ∼90% at ∼250 nm mCAH3. Moreover, the time interval between mCAH3 addition and uncapping decreased as the concentration of mCAH3 increased, with the half-time of CP at the barbed end decreasing from ∼30 min without mCAH3 to ∼10 s with a saturating amount of mCAH3. Finally, using mCAH3 tagged with mGFP, we obtained direct evidence that the complex of CP and mCAH3 has a small but measurable affinity for the barbed end, as inferred from previous studies and kinetic modeling. We conclude that the isolated CAH3 domain of CARMIL (and presumably the intact molecule as well) possesses the ability to uncap CP-capped actin filaments. PMID:19926785

  2. Demonstration of actin filament stress fibers in microvascular endothelial cells in situ.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nehls, V; Drenckhahn, D

    1991-07-01

    We have developed a method for immunostaining the microvascular tree of rat mesenteric windows in situ. The procedure consists of three steps, i.e., mild fixation with formaldehyde, controlled proteolytic digestion of the mesothelial layer, and permeabilization with acetone. Discrimination between different microvascular segments was possible by double-fluorescent staining with antibodies to the smooth muscle isoform of alpha-actin and to nonmuscle myosin from platelets. Antibodies to nonmuscle myosin labeled numerous longitudinally oriented cables in endothelial cells of all microvascular segments (arterioles, metarterioles, pre-, mid-, and postcapillaries, small venules). Occasionally, the myosin-containing cables displayed the interrupted sarcomere-like staining pattern that is diagnostic for stress fibers. In contrast, staining of actin filaments with phalloidin-rhodamin resulted in a noninterrupted, continuous fluorescence of the stress fibers. A possible functional role of microvascular endothelial stress fibers is to serve as a tensile cytoskeletal scaffold that stabilizes the tubular, three-dimensional geometry of microvessels and, in addition, to help the endothelium resist the shear forces created by blood flow and by collision with red and white blood cells.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  4. Actin-based propulsion of spatially extended objects

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Enculescu, Mihaela [Institute for Theoretical Physics, Technische Universitaet Berlin, Hardenbergstrasse 36, 10623 Berlin (Germany); Falcke, Martin, E-mail: mihaela.enculescu@tu-berlin.de [Max-Delbrueck-Center for Molecular Medicine, Mathematical Cell Physiology, Robert-Roessle-Street 10, 13125 Berlin (Germany)

    2011-05-15

    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.

  5. New insights into dynamic actin-based chloroplast photorelocation movement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kong, Sam-Geun; Wada, Masamitsu

    2011-09-01

    Chloroplast movement is essential for plants to survive under various environmental light conditions. Phototropins-plant-specific blue-light-activated receptor kinases-mediate the response by perceiving light intensity and direction. Recently, novel chloroplast actin (cp-actin) filaments have been identified as playing a pivotal role in the directional chloroplast photorelocation movement. Encouraging progress has recently been made in this field of research through molecular genetics and cell biological analyses. This review describes factors that have been identified as being involved in chloroplast movement and their roles in the regulation of cp-actin filaments, thus providing a basis for reflection on their biochemical activities and functions.

  6. The Interaction of Arp2/3 Complex with Actin: Nucleation, High Affinity Pointed End Capping, and Formation of Branching Networks of Filaments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dyche Mullins, R.; Heuser, John A.; Pollard, Thomas D.

    1998-05-01

    The Arp2/3 complex is a stable assembly of seven protein subunits including two actin-related proteins (Arp2 and Arp3) and five novel proteins. Previous work showed that this complex binds to the sides of actin filaments and is concentrated at the leading edges of motile cells. Here, we show that Arp2/3 complex purified from Acanthamoeba caps the pointed ends of actin filaments with high affinity. Arp2/3 complex inhibits both monomer addition and dissociation at the pointed ends of actin filaments with apparent nanomolar affinity and increases the critical concentration for polymerization at the pointed end from 0.6 to 1.0 μ M. The high affinity of Arp2/3 complex for pointed ends and its abundance in amoebae suggest that in vivo all actin filament pointed ends are capped by Arp2/3 complex. Arp2/3 complex also nucleates formation of actin filaments that elongate only from their barbed ends. From kinetic analysis, the nucleation mechanism appears to involve stabilization of polymerization intermediates (probably actin dimers). In electron micrographs of quick-frozen, deep-etched samples, we see Arp2/3 bound to sides and pointed ends of actin filaments and examples of Arp2/3 complex attaching pointed ends of filaments to sides of other filaments. In these cases, the angle of attachment is a remarkably constant 70 ± 7 degrees. From these in vitro biochemical properties, we propose a model for how Arp2/3 complex controls the assembly of a branching network of actin filaments at the leading edge of motile cells.

  7. Effect of phosphorylation of phosphatidylinositol on myelin basic protein-mediated binding of actin filaments to lipid bilayers in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boggs, Joan M; Rangaraj, Godha; Dicko, Awa

    2012-09-01

    Myelin basic protein (MBP) binds to negatively charged lipids on the cytosolic surface of oligodendrocytes and is believed to be responsible for adhesion of these surfaces in the multilayered myelin sheath. It can also assemble actin filaments and tether them to lipid bilayers through electrostatic interactions. Here we investigate the effect of increased negative charge of the lipid bilayer due to phosphorylation of phosphatidylinositol (PI) on MBP-mediated binding of actin to the lipid bilayer, by substituting phosphatidylinositol 4-phosphate or phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate for PI in phosphatidylcholine/phosphatidylglycerol lipid vesicles. Phosphorylation of PI caused dissociation of the MBP/actin complex from the lipid vesicles due to repulsion of the negatively charged complex from the negatively charged membrane surface. An effect of phosphorylation could be detected even if the inositol lipid was only 2mol% of the total lipid. Calcium-calmodulin dissociated actin from the MBP-lipid vesicles and phosphorylation of PI increased the amount dissociated. These results show that changes to the lipid composition of myelin, which could occur during signaling or other physiological events, could regulate the ability of MBP to act as a scaffolding protein and bind actin filaments to the lipid bilayer.

  8. A variational approach to the growth dynamics of pre-stressed actin filament networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    John, Karin; Stöter, Thomas; Misbah, Chaouqi

    2016-09-01

    In order to model the growth dynamics of elastic bodies with residual stresses a thermodynamically consistent approach is needed such that the cross-coupling between growth and mechanics can be correctly described. In the present work we apply a variational principle to the formulation of the interfacial growth dynamics of dendritic actin filament networks growing from biomimetic beads, an experimentally well studied system, where the buildup of residual stresses governs the network growth. We first introduce the material model for the network via a strain energy density for an isotropic weakly nonlinear elastic material and then derive consistently from this model the dynamic equations for the interfaces, i.e. for a polymerizing internal interface in contact with the bead and a depolymerizing external interface directed towards the solvent. We show that (i) this approach automatically preserves thermodynamic symmetry-properties, which is not the case for the often cited ‘rubber-band-model’ (Sekimoto et al 2004 Eur. Phys. J. E 13 247-59, Plastino et al 2004 Eur. Biophys. J. 33 310-20) and (ii) leads to a robust morphological instability of the treadmilling network interfaces. The nature of the instability depends on the interplay of the two dynamic interfaces. Depending on the biochemical conditions the network envelope evolves into a comet-like shape (i.e. the actin envelope thins out at one side and thickens on the opposite side of the bead) via a varicose instability or it breaks the symmetry via higher order zigzag modes. We conclude that morphological instabilities due to mechano-chemical coupling mechanisms and the presences of mechancial pre-stresses can play a major role in locally organizing the cytoskeleton of living cells.

  9. Phosphorylation of actin-binding protein (ABP-280; filamin) by tyrosine kinase p56lck modulates actin filament cross-linking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pal Sharma, C; Goldmann, Wolfgang H

    2004-01-01

    Actin-binding protein (ABP-280; filamin) is a phosphoprotein present in the periphery of the cytoplasm where it can cross-link actin filaments, associate with lipid membranes, and bind to membrane surface receptors. Given its function and localization in the cell, we decided to investigate the possibility of whether it serves as substrate for p56lck, a lymphocyte-specific member of the src family of protein tyrosine kinases associated with cell surface glycoproteins. The interaction of p56lck with membrane glycoproteins is important for cell development and functional activation. Here, we show that purified p56lck interacts and catalyzes in vitro kinase reactions. Tyrosine phosphorylation by p56lck is restricted to a single peptide of labeled ABP-280 shown by protease digest. The addition of phorbol ester to cells results in the inhibition of phosphorylation of ABP-280 by p56lck. These results show a decrease in phosphorylation suggesting conformationally induced regulation. Dynamic light scattering confirmed increased actin filament cross-linking due to phosphorylation of ABP-280 by p56lck.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

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

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    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.

  12. WAVE binds Ena/VASP for enhanced Arp2/3 complex-based actin assembly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Havrylenko, Svitlana; Noguera, Philippe; Abou-Ghali, Majdouline; Manzi, John; Faqir, Fahima; Lamora, Audrey; Guérin, Christophe; Blanchoin, Laurent; Plastino, Julie

    2015-01-01

    The WAVE complex is the main activator of the Arp2/3 complex for actin filament nucleation and assembly in the lamellipodia of moving cells. Other important players in lamellipodial protrusion are Ena/VASP proteins, which enhance actin filament elongation. Here we examine the molecular coordination between the nucleating activity of the Arp2/3 complex and the elongating activity of Ena/VASP proteins for the formation of actin networks. Using an in vitro bead motility assay, we show that WAVE directly binds VASP, resulting in an increase in Arp2/3 complex-based actin assembly. We show that this interaction is important in vivo as well, for the formation of lamellipodia during the ventral enclosure event of Caenorhabditis elegans embryogenesis. Ena/VASP's ability to bind F-actin and profilin-complexed G-actin are important for its effect, whereas Ena/VASP tetramerization is not necessary. Our data are consistent with the idea that binding of Ena/VASP to WAVE potentiates Arp2/3 complex activity and lamellipodial actin assembly.

  13. Actin-based propulsion of functionalized hard versus fluid spherical objects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delatour, Vincent; Shekhar, Shashank; Reymann, Anne-Cécile; Didry, Dominique; Diêp Lê, Kim Hô; Romet-Lemonne, Guillaume; Helfer, Emmanuèle; Carlier, Marie-France

    2008-02-01

    The directed polymerization of a branched actin network against a functionalized surface drives cell protrusions and organelle propulsion in living cells. Solid microspheres or giant unilamellar vesicles, functionalized with neural Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein (N-WASP), initiate the formation of a branched actin array using actin-related protein 2/3 (Arp2/3) complex, when placed in a motility assay reconstituted with pure proteins. These systems are useful biomimetic models of actin-based propulsion that allow to address how the interplay between the physical properties of the functionalized surface and the dynamics of the actin cytoskeleton determines motile behavior. Both solid beads and deformable vesicles display either continuous or saltatory propulsive motions, which are analyzed comparatively; we show that the deformability of liposomes and the mobility of N-WASP at the lipid surface affect the dynamic and structural parameters of the actin meshwork. Our results indicate that beads and vesicles use different mechanisms to translate insertional polymerization of actin at their surface into directed movement: stress relaxation within the actin gel prevents the accumulation of filaments at the front of moving beads, while segregation of nucleators reduces actin polymerization at the front of moving vesicles.

  14. Actin filaments and microtubule dual-granule transport in human adhered platelets: the role of alpha-dystrobrevins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cerecedo, Doris; Cisneros, Bulmaro; Mondragón, Ricardo; González, Sirenia; Galván, Iván J

    2010-04-01

    Upon activation with physiological stimuli, human platelets undergo morphological changes, centralizing their organelles and secreting effector molecules at the site of vascular injury. Previous studies have indicated that the actin filaments and microtubules of suspension-activated platelets play a critical role in granule movement and exocytosis; however, the participation of these cytoskeleton elements in adhered platelets remains unexplored. alpha- and beta-dystrobrevin members of the dystrophin-associated protein complex in muscle and non-muscle cells have been described as motor protein receptors that might participate in the transport of cellular components in neurons. Recently, we characterized the expression of dystrobrevins in platelets; however, their functional diversity within this cellular model had not been elucidated. The present study examined the contribution of actin filaments and microtubules in granule trafficking during the platelet adhesion process using cytoskeleton-disrupting drugs, quantification of soluble P-selectin, fluorescence resonance transfer energy analysis and immunoprecipitation assays. Likewise, we assessed the interaction of alpha-dystrobrevins with the ubiquitous kinesin heavy chain. Our results strongly suggest that microtubules and actin filaments participate in the transport of alpha and dense granules in the platelet adhesion process, during which alpha-dystrobrevins play the role of regulatory and adaptor proteins that govern trafficking events.

  15. Cooperative regulation of myosin-S1 binding to actin filaments by a continuous flexible Tm-Tn chain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mijailovich, Srboljub M; Kayser-Herold, Oliver; Li, Xiaochuan; Griffiths, Hugh; Geeves, Michael A

    2012-12-01

    The regulation of striated muscle contraction involves cooperative interactions between actin filaments, myosin-S1 (S1), tropomyosin (Tm), troponin (Tn), and calcium. These interactions are modeled by treating overlapping tropomyosins as a continuous flexible chain (CFC), weakly confined by electrostatic interactions with actin. The CFC is displaced locally in opposite directions on the actin surface by the binding of either S1 or Troponin I (TnI) to actin. The apparent rate constants for myosin and TnI binding to and detachment from actin are then intrinsically coupled via the CFC model to the presence of neighboring bound S1s and TnIs. Monte Carlo simulations at prescribed values of the CFC stiffness, the CFC's degree of azimuthal confinement, and the angular displacements caused by the bound proteins were able to predict the stopped-flow transients of S1 binding to regulated F-actin. The transients collected over a large range of calcium concentrations could be well described by adjusting a single calcium-dependent parameter, the rate constant of TnI detachment from actin, k(-I). The resulting equilibrium constant K(B) ≡ 1/K(I) varied sigmoidally with the free calcium, increasing from 0.12 at low calcium (pCa >7) to 12 at high calcium (pCa Hill coefficient of ~2.15. The similarity of the curves for excess-actin and excess-myosin data confirms their allosteric relationship. The spatially explicit calculations confirmed variable sizes for the cooperative units and clustering of bound myosins at low calcium concentrations. Moreover, inclusion of negative cooperativity between myosin units predicted the observed slowing of myosin binding at excess-myosin concentrations.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rønnov-Jessen, Lone; Petersen, Ole William

    1996-01-01

    Actins are known to comprise six mammalian isoforms of which beta- and gamma-nonmuscle actins are present in all cells, whereas alpha-smooth muscle (alpha-sm) actin is normally restricted to cells of the smooth muscle lineages. alpha-Sm actin has been found also to be expressed transiently...... reactions. Here, we show that the presence of alpha-sm actin is a signal for retardation of migratory behavior in fibroblasts. Comparison in a migration assay of fibroblast cell strains with and without alpha-sm actin revealed migratory restraint in alpha-sm actin-positive fibroblasts. Electroporation...... in certain nonmuscle cells, in particular fibroblasts, which are referred to as myofibroblasts. The functional significance of alpha-sm actin in fibroblasts is unknown. However, myofibroblasts appear to play a prominent role in stromal reaction in breast cancer, at the site of wound repair, and in fibrotic...

  17. Preparation and Characterization of a Polyclonal Antibody against Human Actin Filament-Associated Protein-120 kD.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yujian; Liu, Yong; Guo, Jiayu; Tang, Tao; Gao, Jian; Huang, Tao; Wang, Bin; Liu, Shaojun

    2016-06-17

    Actin filament-associated protein-120kD (AFAP-120) is an alternatively spliced isoform of actin filament-associated protein-110kD (AFAP-110) and contains an additional neuronal insert (NINS) fragment in addition to identical domains to the AFAP-110. Unlike AFAP-110 widely expressed in tissues, AFAP-120 is specifically expressed in the nervous system and plays a role in organizing dynamic actin structures during neuronal differentiation. However, anti-AFAP-120 antibody is still commercially unavailable, and this may hinder the function research for AFAP-120. In this study, we simultaneously used the ABCpred online server and the BepiPred 1.0 server to predict B-cell epitopes in the exclusive NINS sequence of human AFAP-120 protein, and found that a 16aa-peptide sequence was the consensus epitope predicted by both tools. This peptide was chemically synthesized and used as an immunogen to develop polyclonal antibody against AFAP-120 (anti-AFAP-120). The sensitivity and specificity of anti-AFAP-120 were analyzed with immunoblotting, immunoprecipitation, and immunofluorescence assays. Our results indicated that anti-AFAP-120 could react with over-expressed and endogenous human AFAP-120 protein under denatured condition, but not with human AFAP-110 protein. Moreover, native human AFAP-120 protein could also be recognized by the anti-AFAP-120 antibody. These results suggested that the prepared anit-AFAP-120 antibody would be a useful tool for studying the biochemical and biological functions of AFAP-120.

  18. AFAP-1L1-mediated actin filaments crosslinks hinder Trypanosoma cruzi cell invasion and intracellular multiplication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Araújo, Karine Canuto Loureiro; Teixeira, Thaise Lara; Machado, Fabrício Castro; da Silva, Aline Alves; Quintal, Amanda Pifano Neto; da Silva, Claudio Vieira

    2016-10-01

    Host actin cytoskeleton polymerization has been shown to play an important role during Trypanosoma cruzi internalization into mammalian cell. The structure and dynamics of the actin cytoskeleton in cells are regulated by a vast number of actin-binding proteins. Here we aimed to verify the impact of AFAP-1L1, during invasion and multiplication of T. cruzi. Knocking-down AFAP-1L1 increased parasite cell invasion and intracellular multiplication. Thus, we have shown that the integrity of the machinery formed by AFAP-1L1 in actin cytoskeleton polymerization is important to hinder parasite infection.

  19. Biogenesis of actin-like bacterial cytoskeletal filaments destined for positioning prokaryotic magnetic organelles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pradel, Nathalie; Santini, Claire-Lise; Bernadac, Alain; Fukumori, Yoshihiro; Wu, Long-Fei

    2006-11-14

    Magnetosomes comprise a magnetic nanocrystal surrounded by a lipid bilayer membrane. These unique prokaryotic organelles align inside magnetotactic bacterial cells and serve as an intracellular compass allowing the bacteria to navigate along the geomagnetic field in aquatic environments. Cryoelectron tomography of Magnetospirillum strains has revealed that the magnetosome chain is surrounded by a network of filaments that may be composed of MamK given that the filaments are absent in the mamK mutant cells. The process of the MamK filament assembly is unknown. Here we prove the authenticity of the MamK filaments and show that MamK exhibits linear distribution inside Magnetospirillum sp. cells even in the area without magnetosomes. The mamK gene alone is sufficient to direct the synthesis of straight filaments in Escherichia coli, and one extremity of the MamK filaments is located at the cellular pole. By using dual fluorescent labeling of MamK, we found that MamK nucleates at multiple sites and assembles into mosaic filaments. Time-lapse experiments reveal that the assembly of the MamK filaments is a highly dynamic and kinetically asymmetrical process. MamK bundles might initiate the formation of a new filament or associate to one preexistent filament. Our results demonstrate the mechanism of biogenesis of prokaryotic cytoskeletal filaments that are structurally and functionally distinct from the known MreB and ParM filaments. In addition to positioning magnetosomes, other hypothetical functions of the MamK filaments in magnetotaxis might include anchoring magnetosomes and being involved in magnetic reception.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  1. New Insights into Dynamic Actin-Based Chloroplast Photorelocation Movement

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Sam-Geun Kong; Masamitsu Wada

    2011-01-01

    Chloroplast movement is essential for plants to survive under various environmental light conditions.Phototropins-plant-specific blue-light-activated receptor kinases-mediate the response by perceiving light intensity and direction.Recently,novel chloroplast actin (cp-actin) filaments have been identified as playing a pivotal role in the directional chloroplast photorelocation movement.Encouraging progress has recently been made in this field of research through molecular genetics and cell biological analyses.This review describes factors that have been identified as being involved in chloroplast movement and their roles in the regulation of cp-actin filaments,thus providing a basis for reflection on their biochemical activities and functions.

  2. Actin organization, bristle morphology, and viability are affected by actin capping protein mutations in Drosophila

    OpenAIRE

    1996-01-01

    Regulation of actin filament length and orientation is important in many actin-based cellular processes. This regulation is postulated to occur through the action of actin-binding proteins. Many actin-binding proteins that modify actin in vitro have been identified, but in many cases, it is not known if this activity is physiologically relevant. Capping protein (CP) is an actin-binding protein that has been demonstrated to control filament length in vitro by binding to the barbed ends and pre...

  3. Genetic deletion of ABP-120 alters the three-dimensional organization of actin filaments in Dictyostelium pseudopods

    OpenAIRE

    1995-01-01

    This study extends the observations on the defects in pseudopod formation of ABP-120+ and ABP-120- cells by a detailed morphological and biochemical analysis of the actin based cytoskeleton. Both ABP-120+ and ABP-120- cells polymerize the same amount of F-actin in response to stimulation with cAMP. However, unlike ABP-120+ cells, ABP-120- cells do not incorporate actin into the Triton X-100-insoluble cytoskeleton at 30-50 s, the time when ABP-120 is incorporated into the cytoskeleton and when...

  4. Transient state model of actin-based motility

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2011-01-01

    We developed a transient model for actin-based motility.Diffusion of actin monomers was included in the formulation and its influence on the speed of actin-driven cargos was examined in detail.Our results clearly demonstrated how actin polymerization accelerates cargos that are initially stationary,as well as how steady-state is eventually reached.We also found that,due to polymerization and diffusion,actin monomer concentration near the load surface can be significantly lower than that in the rest of th...

  5. Plant 115-kDa actin-filament bundling protein, P-115-ABP, is a homologue of plant villin and is widely distributed in cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yokota, Etsuo; Vidali, Luis; Tominaga, Motoki; Tahara, Hiroshi; Orii, Hidefumi; Morizane, Yosuke; Hepler, Peter K; Shimmen, Teruo

    2003-10-01

    In many cases, actin filaments are arranged into bundles and serve as tracks for cytoplasmic streaming in plant cells. We have isolated an actin-filament bundling protein, which is composed of 115-kDa polypeptide (P-115-ABP), from the germinating pollen of lily, Lilium longiflorum [Nakayasu et al. (1998) BIOCHEM: Biophys. Res. Commun. 249: 61]. P-115-ABP shared similar antigenicity with a plant 135-kDa actin-filament bundling protein (P-135-ABP), a plant homologue of villin. A full-length cDNA clone (ABP115; accession no. AB097407) was isolated from an expression cDNA library of lily pollen by immuno-screening using antisera against P-115-ABP and P-135-ABP. The amino acid sequence of P-115-ABP deduced from this clone showed high homology with those of P-135-ABP and four villin isoforms of Arabidopsis thaliana (AtVLN1, AtVLN2, AtVLN3 and AtVLN4), especially AtVLN4, indicating that P-115-ABP can also be classified as a plant villin. The P-115-ABP isolated biochemically from the germinating lily pollen was able to arrange F-actin filaments with uniform polarity into bundles and this bundling activity was suppressed by Ca2+-calmodulin (CaM), similar to the actin-filament bundling properties of P-135-ABP. The P-115-ABP type of plant villin was widely distributed in plant cells, from algae to land plants. In root hair cells of Hydrocharis dubia, this type of plant villin was co-localized with actin-filament bundles in the transvacuolar strands and the sub-cortical regions. Microinjection of the antiserum against P-115-ABP into living root hair cells caused the disappearance of transvaculor strands and alteration of the route of cytoplasmic streaming. In internodal cells of Chara corallina in which the P-135-ABP type of plant villin is lacking, the P-115-ABP type showed co-localization with actin-filament cables anchored on the intracellular surface of chloroplasts. These results indicated that plant villins are widely distributed and involved in the organization of actin

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

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    陶志华; 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.

  7. Two kinesin-like proteins mediate actin-based chloroplast movement in Arabidopsis thaliana

    OpenAIRE

    Suetsugu, Noriyuki; Yamada, Noboru; Kagawa, Takatoshi; Yonekura, Hisashi; Uyeda, Taro Q. P.; Kadota, Akeo; Wada, Masamitsu

    2010-01-01

    Organelle movement is essential for efficient cellular function in eukaryotes. Chloroplast photorelocation movement is important for plant survival as well as for efficient photosynthesis. Chloroplast movement generally is actin dependent and mediated by blue light receptor phototropins. In Arabidopsis thaliana, phototropins mediate chloroplast movement by regulating short actin filaments on chloroplasts (cp-actin filaments), and the chloroplast outer envelope protein CHUP1 is necessary for c...

  8. Molecular requirements for actin-based lamella formation in Drosophila S2 cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rogers, Stephen L; Wiedemann, Ursula; Stuurman, Nico; Vale, Ronald D

    2003-09-15

    Cell migration occurs through the protrusion of the actin-enriched lamella. Here, we investigated the effects of RNAi depletion of approximately 90 proteins implicated in actin function on lamella formation in Drosophila S2 cells. Similar to in vitro reconstitution studies of actin-based Listeria movement, we find that lamellae formation requires a relatively small set of proteins that participate in actin nucleation (Arp2/3 and SCAR), barbed end capping (capping protein), filament depolymerization (cofilin and Aip1), and actin monomer binding (profilin and cyclase-associated protein). Lamellae are initiated by parallel and partially redundant signaling pathways involving Rac GTPases and the adaptor protein Nck, which stimulate SCAR, an Arp2/3 activator. We also show that RNAi of three proteins (kette, Abi, and Sra-1) known to copurify with and inhibit SCAR in vitro leads to SCAR degradation, revealing a novel function of this protein complex in SCAR stability. Our results have identified an essential set of proteins involved in actin dynamics during lamella formation in Drosophila S2 cells.

  9. Crosslink dynamics in a model of two filaments of actin under shear

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boerma, Arjan; van der Giessen, Erik; Papanikolaou, Stefanos

    2015-03-01

    We seek to elucidate the dynamic mechanisms underlying the stress dependent effects of the cellular cytoskeleton, as they are observed in the storage and loss modulus as a function of frequency and cross-linker concentration. We report on the statistical behavior of the effects originating from cross-linker dynamics in the basic constituent of a cytoskeleton network: two mutually cross-linked filaments. We model each of the filaments and the cross-linkers in terms of elastic finite elements. Unbinding of individual cross-linkers takes place through a realistic constitutive model and re-binding may occur to maintain the average cross-linker density. Our approach provides a direct analysis of the athermal interplay of the elastic filament interactions with the dynamics of the cross-linking molecules.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    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.

  11. Crosstalk between non-processive myosin motors mediated by the actin filament elasticity

    OpenAIRE

    2011-01-01

    Many biological processes involve the action of molecular motors that interact with the cell cytoskeleton. Some processes, such as the transport of cargoes is achieved mainly by the action of individual motors. Other, such as cell motility and division, require the cooperative work of many motors. Collective motor dynamics can be quite complex and unexpected. One beautiful example is the bidirectional ("back and forth") motion of filaments which is induced when the motors within a group exert...

  12. Polyclonal hypergammaglobulinemia and high smooth-muscle autoantibody titers with specificity against filamentous actin: consider visceral leishmaniasis, not just autoimmune hepatitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Makaritsis, Konstantinos P; Gatselis, Nikolaos K; Ioannou, Maria; Petinaki, Efthimia; Dalekos, George N

    2009-07-01

    Visceral leishmaniasis (VL) remains a public health problem in most countries bordering the Mediterranean basin. Its diagnosis is challenging and often delayed, as the main clinical picture is often indistinguishable from that of other infectious and non-infectious diseases. Herein, we report two unusual cases of VL that presented with several characteristics of autoimmune hepatitis (AIH). Neither patient had a history of fever, only generalized symptoms accompanied by polyclonal hypergammaglobulinemia, cytopenias, signs of portal hypertension, elevated transaminases, and high titers of antinuclear and smooth-muscle autoantibodies (SMA) with reactivity against filamentous actin (F-actin), which has been recognized as specific to AIH. A clinical diagnosis of AIH was considered, but a bone marrow biopsy was performed before a liver biopsy to exclude a primary bone marrow disease. The biopsy led to the diagnosis of VL. The diagnosis was further confirmed by IgG antibodies against Leishmania spp. using ELISA and PCR-based assays. Treatment with amphotericin in the first case and pentamidine in the second (because of a severe reaction to amphotericin) was effective. From the clinical point of view, it should be emphasized that, in cases with high titers of anti-F-actin AIH-specific SMA accompanied by polyclonal hypergammaglobulinemia, the possibility of AIH should be cautiously differentiated from VL; this distinction is of paramount importance because initiation of immunosuppression for AIH treatment would be detrimental to a patient with underlying leishmaniasis. Therefore, in such cases and in areas where the disease is still present, it seems rational to exclude VL before starting any immunosuppressive therapy.

  13. The role of cyclase-associated protein in regulating actin filament dynamics – more than a monomer-sequestration factor

    OpenAIRE

    Ono, Shoichiro

    2013-01-01

    Dynamic reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton is fundamental to a number of cell biological events. A variety of actin-regulatory proteins modulate polymerization and depolymerization of actin and contribute to actin cytoskeletal reorganization. Cyclase-associated protein (CAP) is a conserved actin-monomer-binding protein that has been studied for over 20 years. Early studies have shown that CAP sequesters actin monomers; recent studies, however, have revealed more active roles of CAP in a...

  14. C-terminal fragment of amebin promotes actin filament bundling, inhibits acto-myosin ATPase activity and is essential for amoeba migration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jóźwiak, Jolanta; Rzhepetskyy, Yuriy; Sobczak, Magdalena; Kocik, Elżbieta; Skórzewski, Radosław; Kłopocka, Wanda; Rędowicz, Maria Jolanta

    2011-02-01

    Amebin [formerly termed as ApABP-FI; Sobczak et al. (2007) Biochem. Cell Biol. 85] is encoded in Amoeba proteus by two transcripts, 2672-nt and 1125-nt. A product of the shorter transcript (termed as C-amebin), comprising C-terminal 375 amino-acid-residue fragment of amebin, has been expressed and purified as the recombinant GST-fusion protein. GST-C-amebin bound both to monomeric and filamentous actin. The binding was Ca(2+)-independent and promoted filament bundling, as revealed with the transmission electron microscopy. GST-C-amebin significantly decreased MgATPase activity of rabbit skeletal muscle acto-S1. Removal with endoproteinase ArgC of a positively charged C-terminal region of GST-amebin containing KLASMWEQ sequence abolished actin-binding and bundling as well as the ATPase-inhibitory effect of C-amebin, indicating that this protein region was involved in the interaction with actin. Microinjection of amoebae with antibody against C-terminus of amebin significantly affected amoebae morphology, disturbed cell polarization and transport of cytoplasmic granules as well as blocked migration. These data indicate that amebin may be one of key regulators of the actin-cytoskeleton dynamics and actin-dependent motility in A. proteus.

  15. Crosstalk between non-processive myosin motors mediated by the actin filament elasticity

    CERN Document Server

    Farago, Oded

    2011-01-01

    Many biological processes involve the action of molecular motors that interact with the cell cytoskeleton. Some processes, such as the transport of cargoes is achieved mainly by the action of individual motors. Other, such as cell motility and division, require the cooperative work of many motors. Collective motor dynamics can be quite complex and unexpected. One beautiful example is the bidirectional ("back and forth") motion of filaments which is induced when the motors within a group exert forces in opposite directions. This review tackles the puzzle emerging from a recent experimental work in which it has been shown that the characteristic reversal times of the bidirectional motion are practically independent of the number of motors. This result is in a striking contradiction with existing theoretical models that predict an exponential growth of the reversal times with the size of the system. We argue that the solution to this puzzle may be the crosstalk between the motors which is mediated by the elastic...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

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

    CERN Document Server

    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...

  18. Actin-based dynamics during spermatogenesis and its significance

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    XIAO Xiang; YANG Wan-xi

    2007-01-01

    Actin can be found in all kinds ofeukaryotic cells, maintaining their shapes and motilities, while its dynamics in sperm cells is understood less than their nonmuscle somatic cell counterparts. Spermatogenesis is a complicated process, resulting in the production of mature sperm from primordial germ cell. Significant structural and biochemical changes take place in the seminiferous epithelium of the adult testis during spermatogenesis. It was proved that all mammalian sperm contain actin, and that F-actin may play an important role during spermatogenesis, especially in nuclear shaping. Recently a new model for sperm head elongation based on the acrosome-acroplaxome-manchette complex has been proposed. In Drosophila, F-actin assembly is supposed to be very crucial during individualization. In this mini-review, we provide an overview of the structure, function, and regulation characteristics of actin cytoskeleton, and a summary of the current status of research of actin-based structure and movement is also provided, with emphasis on the role of actins in sperm head shaping during spermiogenesis and the cell junction dynamics in the testis. Research of the Sertoli ectoplasmic specialization is in the spotlight, which is a testis-specific actin-based junction very important for the movement of germ cells across the epithelium. Study of the molecular architecture and the regulating mechanism of the Sertoli ectoplasmic specialization has become an intriguing field. All this may lead to a new strategy for male infertility and,at the same time, a novel idea may result in devising much safer contraception with high efficiency. It is hoped that the advances listed in this review would give developmental and morphological researchers a favorable investigating outline and could help to enlarge the view of new strategies and models for actin dynamics during spermatogenesis.

  19. Actin-based motility of Listeria: Right-handed helical trajectories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rangarajan, Murali

    2012-06-01

    Bacteria such as Listeria monocytogenes recruit cellular machinery to move in and between cells. Understanding the mechanism of motility, including force and torque generation and the resultant displacements, holds keys to numerous applications in medicine and biosensing. In this work, a simple back-of-the-envelope calculation is presented to illustrate that a biomechanical model of actin-based motility of a rigid surface through persistently attached filaments propelled by affinity-modulated molecular motors can produce a right-handed helical trajectory consistent with experimental observations. The implications of the mechanism to bacterial motility are discussed.

  20. Curved trajectories of actin-based motility in two dimensions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wen, Fu-Lai; Leung, Kwan-tai; Chen, Hsuan-Yi

    2012-05-01

    Recent experiments have reported fascinating geometrical trajectories for actin-based motility of bacteria Listeria monocytogenes and functionalized beads. To understand the physical mechanism for these trajectories, we constructed a phenomenological model to study the motion of an actin-propelled disk in two dimensions. In our model, the force and actin density on the surface of the disk are influenced by the translation and rotation of the disk, which in turn is induced by the asymmetric distributions of those densities. We show that this feedback can destabilize a straight trajectory, leading to circular, S-shape and other geometrical trajectories observed in the experiments through bifurcations in the distributions of the force and actin density. The relation between our model and the models for self-propelled deformable particles is emphasized and discussed.

  1. Filament wound data base development, revision 1

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  2. αT-Catenin Is a Constitutive Actin-binding α-Catenin That Directly Couples the Cadherin·Catenin Complex to Actin Filaments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wickline, Emily D; Dale, Ian W; Merkel, Chelsea D; Heier, Jonathon A; Stolz, Donna B; Kwiatkowski, Adam V

    2016-07-22

    α-Catenin is the primary link between the cadherin·catenin complex and the actin cytoskeleton. Mammalian αE-catenin is allosterically regulated: the monomer binds the β-catenin·cadherin complex, whereas the homodimer does not bind β-catenin but interacts with F-actin. As part of the cadherin·catenin complex, αE-catenin requires force to bind F-actin strongly. It is not known whether these properties are conserved across the mammalian α-catenin family. Here we show that αT (testes)-catenin, a protein unique to amniotes that is expressed predominantly in the heart, is a constitutive actin-binding α-catenin. We demonstrate that αT-catenin is primarily a monomer in solution and that αT-catenin monomer binds F-actin in cosedimentation assays as strongly as αE-catenin homodimer. The β-catenin·αT-catenin heterocomplex also binds F-actin with high affinity unlike the β-catenin·αE-catenin complex, indicating that αT-catenin can directly link the cadherin·catenin complex to the actin cytoskeleton. Finally, we show that a mutation in αT-catenin linked to arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy, V94D, promotes homodimerization, blocks β-catenin binding, and in cardiomyocytes disrupts localization at cell-cell contacts. Together, our data demonstrate that αT-catenin is a constitutively active actin-binding protein that can physically couple the cadherin·catenin complex to F-actin in the absence of tension. We speculate that these properties are optimized to meet the demands of cardiomyocyte adhesion.

  3. Three-dimensional Super Resolution Microscopy of F-actin Filaments by Interferometric PhotoActivated Localization Microscopy (iPALM).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yilin; Kanchanawong, Pakorn

    2016-12-01

    Fluorescence microscopy enables direct visualization of specific biomolecules within cells. However, for conventional fluorescence microscopy, the spatial resolution is restricted by diffraction to ~ 200 nm within the image plane and > 500 nm along the optical axis. As a result, fluorescence microscopy has long been severely limited in the observation of ultrastructural features within cells. The recent development of super resolution microscopy methods has overcome this limitation. In particular, the advent of photoswitchable fluorophores enables localization-based super resolution microscopy, which provides resolving power approaching the molecular-length scale. Here, we describe the application of a three-dimensional super resolution microscopy method based on single-molecule localization microscopy and multiphase interferometry, called interferometric PhotoActivated Localization Microscopy (iPALM). This method provides nearly isotropic resolution on the order of 20 nm in all three dimensions. Protocols for visualizing the filamentous actin cytoskeleton, including specimen preparation and operation of the iPALM instrument, are described here. These protocols are also readily adaptable and instructive for the study of other ultrastructural features in cells.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2012-01-01

    Cell migration entails protrusion of lamellipodia, densely packed networks of actin filaments at the cell front. Filaments are generated by nucleation, likely mediated by Arp2/3 complex and its activator Scar/WAVE. It is unclear whether formins contribute to lamellipodial actin filament nucleation...... ends generated by Arp2/3-mediated branching are captured and efficiently elongated by the formin. Consistent with these biochemical properties, RNAi-mediated silencing of FMNL2 expression decreases the rate of lamellipodia protrusion and, accordingly, the efficiency of cell migration. Our data...

  5. An experimental and computational study of the effect of ActA polarity on the speed of Listeria monocytogenes actin-based motility.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susanne M Rafelski

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available Listeria monocytogenes is a pathogenic bacterium that moves within infected cells and spreads directly between cells by harnessing the cell's dendritic actin machinery. This motility is dependent on expression of a single bacterial surface protein, ActA, a constitutively active Arp2,3 activator, and has been widely studied as a biochemical and biophysical model system for actin-based motility. Dendritic actin network dynamics are important for cell processes including eukaryotic cell motility, cytokinesis, and endocytosis. Here we experimentally altered the degree of ActA polarity on a population of bacteria and made use of an ActA-RFP fusion to determine the relationship between ActA distribution and speed of bacterial motion. We found a positive linear relationship for both ActA intensity and polarity with speed. We explored the underlying mechanisms of this dependence with two distinctly different quantitative models: a detailed agent-based model in which each actin filament and branched network is explicitly simulated, and a three-state continuum model that describes a simplified relationship between bacterial speed and barbed-end actin populations. In silico bacterial motility required a cooperative restraining mechanism to reconstitute our observed speed-polarity relationship, suggesting that kinetic friction between actin filaments and the bacterial surface, a restraining force previously neglected in motility models, is important in determining the effect of ActA polarity on bacterial motility. The continuum model was less restrictive, requiring only a filament number-dependent restraining mechanism to reproduce our experimental observations. However, seemingly rational assumptions in the continuum model, e.g. an average propulsive force per filament, were invalidated by further analysis with the agent-based model. We found that the average contribution to motility from side-interacting filaments was actually a function of the Act

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  7. The human Arp2/3 complex is composed of evolutionarily conserved subunits and is localized to cellular regions of dynamic actin filament assembly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Welch, M D; DePace, A H; Verma, S; Iwamatsu, A; Mitchison, T J

    1997-07-28

    The Arp2/3 protein complex has been implicated in the control of actin polymerization in cells. The human complex consists of seven subunits which include the actin related proteins Arp2 and Arp3, and five others referred to as p41-Arc, p34-Arc, p21-Arc, p20-Arc, and p16-Arc (p omplex). We have determined the predicted amino acid sequence of all seven subunits. Each has homologues in diverse eukaryotes, implying that the structure and function of the complex has been conserved through evolution. Human Arp2 and Arp3 are very similar to family members from other species. p41-Arc is a new member of the Sop2 family of WD (tryptophan and aspartate) repeat-containing proteins and may be posttranslationally modified, suggesting that it may be involved in regulating the activity and/or localization of the complex. p34-Arc, p21-Arc, p20-Arc, and p16-Arc define novel protein families. We sought to evaluate the function of the Arp2/3 complex in cells by determining its intracellular distribution. Arp3, p34-Arc, and p21-Arc were localized to the lamellipodia of stationary and locomoting fibroblasts, as well to Listeria monocytogenes assembled actin tails. They were not detected in cellular bundles of actin filaments. Taken together with the ability of the Arp2/3 complex to induce actin polymerization, these observations suggest that the complex promotes actin assembly in lamellipodia and may participate in lamellipodial protrusion.

  8. Actin and myosin regulate cytoplasm stiffness in plant cells: a study using optical tweezers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Honing, Hannie S; de Ruijter, Norbert C A; Emons, Anne Mie C; Ketelaar, Tijs

    2010-01-01

    Here, we produced cytoplasmic protrusions with optical tweezers in mature BY-2 suspension cultured cells to study the parameters involved in the movement of actin filaments during changes in cytoplasmic organization and to determine whether stiffness is an actin-related property of plant cytoplasm. Optical tweezers were used to create cytoplasmic protrusions resembling cytoplasmic strands. Simultaneously, the behavior of the actin cytoskeleton was imaged. After actin filament depolymerization, less force was needed to create cytoplasmic protrusions. During treatment with the myosin ATPase inhibitor 2,3-butanedione monoxime, more trapping force was needed to create and maintain cytoplasmic protrusions. Thus, the presence of actin filaments and, even more so, the deactivation of a 2,3-butanedione monoxime-sensitive factor, probably myosin, stiffens the cytoplasm. During 2,3-butanedione monoxime treatment, none of the tweezer-formed protrusions contained filamentous actin, showing that a 2,3-butanedione monoxime-sensitive factor, probably myosin, is responsible for the movement of actin filaments, and implying that myosin serves as a static cross-linker of actin filaments when its motor function is inhibited. The presence of actin filaments does not delay the collapse of cytoplasmic protrusions after tweezer release. Myosin-based reorganization of the existing actin cytoskeleton could be the basis for new cytoplasmic strand formation, and thus the production of an organized cytoarchitecture.

  9. Actin-dependent mechanisms in AMPA receptor trafficking

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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. The actin-interacting protein AIP1 is essential for actin organization and plant development

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ketelaar, T.; Anthony, R.G.; Voigt, B.; Menzel, D.; Hussey, P.J.

    2004-01-01

    Cell division, growth, and cytoplasmic organization require a dynamic actin cytoskeleton. The filamentous actin (F-actin) network is regulated by actin binding proteins that modulate actin dynamics. These actin binding proteins often have cooperative interactions [1 and 2]. In particular, actin inte

  11. A multi-scale continuum model of skeletal muscle mechanics predicting force enhancement based on actin-titin interaction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heidlauf, Thomas; Klotz, Thomas; Rode, Christian; Altan, Ekin; Bleiler, Christian; Siebert, Tobias; Röhrle, Oliver

    2016-12-01

    Although recent research emphasises the possible role of titin in skeletal muscle force enhancement, this property is commonly ignored in current computational models. This work presents the first biophysically based continuum-mechanical model of skeletal muscle that considers, in addition to actin-myosin interactions, force enhancement based on actin-titin interactions. During activation, titin attaches to actin filaments, which results in a significant reduction in titin's free molecular spring length and therefore results in increased titin forces during a subsequent stretch. The mechanical behaviour of titin is included on the microscopic half-sarcomere level of a multi-scale chemo-electro-mechanical muscle model, which is based on the classic sliding-filament and cross-bridge theories. In addition to titin stress contributions in the muscle fibre direction, the continuum-mechanical constitutive relation accounts for geometrically motivated, titin-induced stresses acting in the muscle's cross-fibre directions. Representative simulations of active stretches under maximal and submaximal activation levels predict realistic magnitudes of force enhancement in fibre direction. For example, stretching the model by 20 % from optimal length increased the isometric force at the target length by about 30 %. Predicted titin-induced stresses in the muscle's cross-fibre directions are rather insignificant. Including the presented development in future continuum-mechanical models of muscle function in dynamic situations will lead to more accurate model predictions during and after lengthening contractions.

  12. G-actin regulates rapid induction of actin nucleation by mDia1 to restore cellular actin polymers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Higashida, Chiharu; Suetsugu, Shiro; Tsuji, Takahiro; Monypenny, James; Narumiya, Shuh; Watanabe, Naoki

    2008-10-15

    mDia1 belongs to the formin family of proteins that share FH1 and FH2 domains. Although formins play a critical role in the formation of many actin-based cellular structures, the physiological regulation of formin-mediated actin assembly within the cell is still unknown. Here we show that cells possess an acute actin polymer restoration mechanism involving mDia1. By using single-molecule live-cell imaging, we found that several treatments including low-dose G-actin-sequestering drugs and unpolymerizable actin mutants activate mDia1 to initiate fast directional movement. The FH2 region, the core domain for actin nucleation, is sufficient to respond to latrunculin B (LatB) to increase its actin nucleation frequency. Simulation analysis revealed an unexpected paradoxical effect of LatB that leads to a several fold increase in free G-actin along with an increase in total G-actin. These results indicate that in cells, the actin nucleation frequency of mDia1 is enhanced not only by Rho, but also strongly through increased catalytic efficiency of the FH2 domain. Consistently, frequent actin nucleation by mDia1 was found around sites of vigorous actin disassembly. Another major actin nucleator, the Arp2/3 complex, was not affected by the G-actin increase induced by LatB. Taken together, we propose that transient accumulation of G-actin works as a cue to promote mDia1-catalyzed actin nucleation to execute rapid reassembly of actin filaments.

  13. Using the peptide BP100 as a cell-penetrating tool for the chemical engineering of actin filaments within living plant cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eggenberger, Kai; Mink, Christian; Wadhwani, Parvesh; Ulrich, Anne S; Nick, Peter

    2011-01-03

    The delivery of externally applied macromolecules or nanoparticles into living cells still represents a critically limiting step before the full capabilities of chemical engineering can be explored. Molecular transporters such as cell-penetrating peptides, peptoids, and other mimetics can be used to carry cargo across the cellular membrane, but it is still difficult to find suitable sequences that operate efficiently for any particular type of cell. Here we report that BP100 (KKLFKKILKYL-amide), originally designed as an antimicrobial peptide against plant pathogens, can be employed as a fast and efficient cell-penetrating agent to transport fluorescent test cargoes into the cytosol of walled plant cells. The uptake of BP100 proceeds slightly more slowly than the endocytosis of fluorescent dextranes, but BP100 accumulates more efficiently and to much higher levels (by an order of magnitude). The entry of BP100 can be efficiently blocked by latrunculin B; this suggests that actin filaments are essential to the uptake mechanism. To test whether this novel transporter can also be used to deliver functional cargoes, we designed a fusion construct of BP100 with the actin-binding Lifeact peptide (MGVADLIKKFESISKEE). We demonstrated that the short BP100 could transport the attached 17-residue sequence quickly and efficiently into tobacco cells. The Lifeact construct retained its functionality as it successfully labeled the actin bundles that tether the nucleus in the cell center.

  14. CARMIL is a potent capping protein antagonist: identification of a conserved CARMIL domain that inhibits the activity of capping protein and uncaps capped actin filaments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uruno, Takehito; Remmert, Kirsten; Hammer, John A

    2006-04-14

    Acanthamoeba CARMIL was previously shown to co-purify with capping protein (CP) and to bind pure CP. Here we show that this interaction inhibits the barbed end-capping activity of CP. Even more strikingly, this interaction drives the uncapping of actin filaments previously capped with CP. These activities are CP-specific; CARMIL does not inhibit the capping activities of either gelsolin or CapG and does not uncap gelsolin-capped filaments. Although full-length (FL) CARMIL (residues 1-1121) possesses both anti-CP activities, C-terminal fragments like glutathione S-transferase (GST)-P (940-1121) that contain the CARMIL CP binding site are at least 10 times more active. We localized the full activities of GST-P to its C-terminal 51 residues (1071-1121). This sequence contains a stretch of 25 residues that is highly conserved in CARMIL proteins from protozoa, flies, worms, and vertebrates (CARMIL Homology domain 3; CAH3). Point mutations showed that the majority of the most highly conserved residues within CAH3 are critical for the anti-CP activity of GST-AP (862-1121). Finally, we found that GST-AP binds CP approximately 20-fold more tightly than does FL-CARMIL. This observation together with the elevated activities of C-terminal fragments relative to FL-CARMIL suggests that FL-CARMIL might exist primarily in an autoinhibited state. Consistent with this idea, proteolytic cleavage of FL-CARMIL with thrombin generated an approximately 14-kDa C-terminal fragment that expresses full anti-CP activities. We propose that, after some type of physiological activation event, FL-CARMIL could function in vivo as a potent CP antagonist. Given the pivotal role that CP plays in determining the global actin phenotype of cells, our results suggest that CARMIL may play an important role in the physiological regulation of actin assembly.

  15. Purification of recombinant human and Drosophila septin hexamers for TIRF assays of actin-septin filament assembly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mavrakis, M; Tsai, F-C; Koenderink, G H

    2016-01-01

    Septins are guanine nucleotide-binding proteins that are conserved from fungi to humans. Septins assemble into heterooligomeric complexes and higher-order structures with key roles in various cellular functions including cell migration and division. The mechanisms by which septins assemble and interact with other cytoskeletal elements like actin remain elusive. A powerful approach to address this question is by cell-free reconstitution of purified cytoskeletal proteins combined with fluorescence microscopy. Here, we describe procedures for the purification of recombinant Drosophila and human septin hexamers from Escherichia coli and reconstitution of actin-septin coassembly. These procedures can be used to compare assembly of Drosophila and human septins and their coassembly with the actin cytoskeleton by total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy.

  16. CHUP1 mediates actin-based light-induced chloroplast avoidance movement in the moss Physcomitrella patens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Usami, Hiroka; Maeda, Takuma; Fujii, Yusuke; Oikawa, Kazusato; Takahashi, Fumio; Kagawa, Takatoshi; Wada, Masamitsu; Kasahara, Masahiro

    2012-12-01

    Chloroplasts change their intracellular distribution in response to light intensity. CHUP1 (CHLOROPLAST UNUSUAL POSITIONING1) is indispensable for this response in Arabidopsis thaliana. However, involvement of CHUP1 in light-induced chloroplast movement is unknown in other plants. In this study, CHUP1 orthologues were isolated from a moss, Physcomitrella patens, and a fern, Adiantum capillus-veneris, by cDNA library screening and PCR cloning based on the P. patens genome sequence. Functional motifs found in CHUP1 of A. thaliana were conserved among the CHUP1 orthologues. In addition to the putative functional regions, the C-terminal regions (approximately 250 amino acids), which are unique in CHUP1s, were highly conserved. Green fluorescent protein (GFP) fusions of P. patens CHUP1s (PpCHUP1A, PpCHUP1B and PpCHUP1C) were transiently expressed in protoplast cells. All GFP fusions were localized on the chloroplasts. Light-induced chloroplast avoidance movement of chup1 disruptants of P. patens was examined in the presence of cytoskeletal inhibitors because of the utilization of both microtubules and actin filaments for the movement in P. patens. When actin filaments were disrupted by cytochalasin B, the wild type (WT) and all chup1 disruptants showed chloroplast avoidance movement. However, when microtubules were disrupted by Oryzalin, chloroplasts in ∆chup1A and ∆chup1A/B rarely moved and stayed in the strong light-irradiated area. On the other hand, WT, ∆chup1B and ∆chup1C showed chloroplast avoidance movement. These results suggest that PpCHUP1A predominantly mediates the actin-based light-induced chloroplast avoidance movement. This study reveals that CHUP1 functions on the chloroplasts and is involved in the actin-based light-induced chloroplast avoidance movement in P. patens.

  17. Loss of cargo binding in the human myosin VI deafness mutant (R1166X) leads to increased actin filament binding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arden, Susan D; Tumbarello, David A; Butt, Tariq; Kendrick-Jones, John; Buss, Folma

    2016-10-01

    Mutations in myosin VI have been associated with autosomal-recessive (DFNB37) and autosomal-dominant (DFNA22) deafness in humans. Here, we characterise an myosin VI nonsense mutation (R1166X) that was identified in a family with hereditary hearing loss in Pakistan. This mutation leads to the deletion of the C-terminal 120 amino acids of the myosin VI cargo-binding domain, which includes the WWY-binding motif for the adaptor proteins LMTK2, Tom1 as well as Dab2. Interestingly, compromising myosin VI vesicle-binding ability by expressing myosin VI with the R1166X mutation or with single point mutations in the adaptor-binding sites leads to increased F-actin binding of this myosin in vitro and in vivo As our results highlight the importance of cargo attachment for regulating actin binding to the motor domain, we perform a detailed characterisation of adaptor protein binding and identify single amino acids within myosin VI required for binding to cargo adaptors. We not only show that the adaptor proteins can directly interact with the cargo-binding tail of myosin VI, but our in vitro studies also suggest that multiple adaptor proteins can bind simultaneously to non-overlapping sites in the myosin VI tail. In conclusion, our characterisation of the human myosin VI deafness mutant (R1166X) suggests that defects in cargo binding may leave myosin VI in a primed/activated state with an increased actin-binding ability.

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

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    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. Actin-based mechanisms for light-dependent intracellular positioning of nuclei and chloroplasts in Arabidopsis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iwabuchi, Kosei; Takagi, Shingo

    2010-08-01

    The plant organelles, chloroplast and nucleus, change their position in response to light. In Arabidopsis thaliana leaf cells, chloroplasts and nuclei are distributed along the inner periclinal wall in darkness. In strong blue light, they become positioned along the anticlinal wall, while in weak blue light, only chloroplasts are accumulated along the inner and outer periclinal walls. Blue-light dependent positioning of both organelles is mediated by the blue-light receptor phototropin and controlled by the actin cytoskeleton. Interestingly, however, it seems that chloroplast movement requires short, fine actin filaments organized at the chloroplast edge, whereas nuclear movement does cytoplasmic, thick actin bundles intimately associated with the nucleus. Although there are many similarities between photo-relocation movements of chloroplasts and nuclei, plant cells appear to have evolved distinct mechanisms to regulate actin organization required for driving the movements of these organelles.

  20. Activation of 5-HT7 receptor stimulates neurite elongation through mTOR, Cdc42 and actin filaments dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Speranza, Luisa; Giuliano, Teresa; Volpicelli, Floriana; De Stefano, M Egle; Lombardi, Loredana; Chambery, Angela; Lacivita, Enza; Leopoldo, Marcello; Bellenchi, Gian C; di Porzio, Umberto; Crispino, Marianna; Perrone-Capano, Carla

    2015-01-01

    Recent studies have indicated that the serotonin receptor subtype 7 (5-HT7R) plays a crucial role in shaping neuronal morphology during embryonic and early postnatal life. Here we show that pharmacological stimulation of 5-HT7R using a highly selective agonist, LP-211, enhances neurite outgrowth in neuronal primary cultures from the cortex, hippocampus and striatal complex of embryonic mouse brain, through multiple signal transduction pathways. All these signaling systems, involving mTOR, the Rho GTPase Cdc42, Cdk5, and ERK, are known to converge on the reorganization of cytoskeletal proteins that subserve neurite outgrowth. Indeed, our data indicate that neurite elongation stimulated by 5-HT7R is modulated by drugs affecting actin polymerization. In addition, we show, by 2D Western blot analyses, that treatment of neuronal cultures with LP-211 alters the expression profile of cofilin, an actin binding protein involved in microfilaments dynamics. Furthermore, by using microfluidic chambers that physically separate axons from the soma and dendrites, we demonstrate that agonist-dependent activation of 5-HT7R stimulates axonal elongation. Our results identify for the first time several signal transduction pathways, activated by stimulation of 5-HT7R, that converge to promote cytoskeleton reorganization and consequent modulation of axonal elongation. Therefore, the activation of 5-HT7R might represent one of the key elements regulating CNS connectivity and plasticity during development.

  1. Activation of 5-HT7 receptor stimulates neurite elongation through mTOR, Cdc42 and actin filaments dynamics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luisa eSperanza

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Recent studies have indicated that the serotonin receptor subtype 7 (5-HT7R plays a crucial role in shaping neuronal morphology during embryonic and early postnatal life. Here we show that pharmacological stimulation of 5-HT7R using a highly selective agonist, LP-211, enhances neurite outgrowth in neuronal primary cultures from the cortex, hippocampus and striatal complex of embryonic mouse brain, through multiple signal transduction pathways. All these signaling systems, involving mTOR, the Rho GTPase Cdc42, Cdk5 and ERK, are known to converge on the reorganization of cytoskeletal proteins that subserve neurite outgrowth. Indeed, our data indicate that neurite elongation stimulated by 5-HT7R is modulated by drugs affecting actin polymerization.In addition, we show, by 2D western blot analyses, that treatment of neuronal cultures with LP-211 alters the expression profile of cofilin, an actin binding protein involved in microfilaments dynamics. Furthermore, by using microfluidic chambers that physically separate axons from the soma and dendrites, we demonstrate that agonist-dependent activation of 5-HT7R stimulates axonal elongation. Our results identify for the first time several signal transduction pathways, activated by stimulation of 5-HT7R, that converge to promote cytoskeleton reorganization and consequent modulation of axonal elongation. Therefore, the activation of 5-HT7R might represent one of the key elements regulating CNS connectivity and plasticity during development.

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

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    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

  3. Investigating sub-spine actin dynamics in rat hippocampal neurons with super-resolution optical imaging.

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    Vedakumar Tatavarty

    Full Text Available Morphological changes in dendritic spines represent an important mechanism for synaptic plasticity which is postulated to underlie the vital cognitive phenomena of learning and memory. These morphological changes are driven by the dynamic actin cytoskeleton that is present in dendritic spines. The study of actin dynamics in these spines traditionally has been hindered by the small size of the spine. In this study, we utilize a photo-activation localization microscopy (PALM-based single-molecule tracking technique to analyze F-actin movements with approximately 30-nm resolution in cultured hippocampal neurons. We were able to observe the kinematic (physical motion of actin filaments, i.e., retrograde flow and kinetic (F-actin turn-over dynamics of F-actin at the single-filament level in dendritic spines. We found that F-actin in dendritic spines exhibits highly heterogeneous kinematic dynamics at the individual filament level, with simultaneous actin flows in both retrograde and anterograde directions. At the ensemble level, movements of filaments integrate into a net retrograde flow of approximately 138 nm/min. These results suggest a weakly polarized F-actin network that consists of mostly short filaments in dendritic spines.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2007-05-01

    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 actin-based force generation with the function of their homologues in plants. We predict the possible role of these proteins, and thus the role of actin-based force generation, in the production of cytoplasmic organisation in plant cells.

  5. Magnetic manipulation of actin orientation, polymerization, and gliding on myosin using superparamagnetic iron oxide particles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yun; Guzik, Stephanie; Sumner, James P; Moreland, John; Koretsky, Alan P

    2011-02-11

    The actin cytoskeleton controls cell shape, motility, as well as intracellular molecular trafficking. The ability to remotely manipulate actin is therefore highly desirable as a tool to probe and manipulate biological processes at the molecular level. We demonstrate actin manipulation by labeling actin filaments with superparamagnetic iron oxide particles (IOPs) and applying a uniform magnetic field to affect actin orientation, polymerization and gliding on myosin. We show for the first time magnetic manipulation of magnetizable actin filaments at the molecular level while gliding on a bed of myosin molecules and during polymerization. A model for the magnetic alignment and guiding mechanism is proposed based on the torque from the induced molecular anisotropy due to interactions between neighboring IOPs distributed along magnetically labeled actin molecules.

  6. Actin-Based Feedback Circuits in Cell Migration and Endocytosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xinxin

    In this thesis, we study the switch and pulse functions of actin during two important cellular processes, cell migration and endocytosis. Actin is an abundant protein that can polymerize to form a dendritic network. The actin network can exert force to push or bend the cell membrane. During cell migration, the actin network behaves like a switch, assembling mostly at one end or at the other end. The end with the majority of the actin network is the leading edge, following which the cell can persistently move in the same direction. The other end, with the minority of the actin network, is the trailing edge, which is dragged by the cell as it moves forward. When subjected to large fluctuations or external stimuli, the leading edge and the trailing edge can interchange and change the direction of motion, like a motion switch. Our model of the actin network in a cell reveals that mechanical force is crucial for forming the motion switch. We find a transition from single state symmetric behavior to switch behavior, when tuning parameters such as the force. The model is studied by both stochastic simulations, and a set of rate equations that are consistent with the simulations. Endocytosis is a process by which cells engulf extracellular substances and recycle the cell membrane. In yeast cells, the actin network is transiently needed to overcome the pressure difference across the cell membrane caused by turgor pressure. The actin network behaves like a pulse, which assembles and then disassembles within about 30 seconds. Using a stochastic model, we reproduce the pulse behaviors of the actin network and one of its regulatory proteins, Las17. The model matches green fluorescence protein (GFP) experiments for wild-type cells. The model also predicts some phenotypes that modify or diminish the pulse behavior. The phenotypes are verified with both experiments performed at Washington University and with other groups' experiments. We find that several feedback mechanisms are

  7. Regulation of cell proliferation by ERK and signal-dependent nuclear translocation of ERK is dependent on Tm5NM1-containing actin filaments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schevzov, Galina; Kee, Anthony J; Wang, Bin; Sequeira, Vanessa B; Hook, Jeff; Coombes, Jason D; Lucas, Christine A; Stehn, Justine R; Musgrove, Elizabeth A; Cretu, Alexandra; Assoian, Richard; Fath, Thomas; Hanoch, Tamar; Seger, Rony; Pleines, Irina; Kile, Benjamin T; Hardeman, Edna C; Gunning, Peter W

    2015-07-01

    ERK-regulated cell proliferation requires multiple phosphorylation events catalyzed first by MEK and then by casein kinase 2 (CK2), followed by interaction with importin7 and subsequent nuclear translocation of pERK. We report that genetic manipulation of a core component of the actin filaments of cancer cells, the tropomyosin Tm5NM1, regulates the proliferation of normal cells both in vitro and in vivo. Mouse embryo fibroblasts (MEFs) lacking Tm5NM1, which have reduced proliferative capacity, are insensitive to inhibition of ERK by peptide and small-molecule inhibitors, indicating that ERK is unable to regulate proliferation of these knockout (KO) cells. Treatment of wild-type MEFs with a CK2 inhibitor to block phosphorylation of the nuclear translocation signal in pERK resulted in greatly decreased cell proliferation and a significant reduction in the nuclear translocation of pERK. In contrast, Tm5NM1 KO MEFs, which show reduced nuclear translocation of pERK, were unaffected by inhibition of CK2. This suggested that it is nuclear translocation of CK2-phosphorylated pERK that regulates cell proliferation and this capacity is absent in Tm5NM1 KO cells. Proximity ligation assays confirmed a growth factor-stimulated interaction of pERK with Tm5NM1 and that the interaction of pERK with importin7 is greatly reduced in the Tm5NM1 KO cells.

  8. Distinct functional interactions between actin isoforms and nonsarcomeric myosins.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mirco Müller

    Full Text Available Despite their near sequence identity, actin isoforms cannot completely replace each other in vivo and show marked differences in their tissue-specific and subcellular localization. Little is known about isoform-specific differences in their interactions with myosin motors and other actin-binding proteins. Mammalian cytoplasmic β- and γ-actin interact with nonsarcomeric conventional myosins such as the members of the nonmuscle myosin-2 family and myosin-7A. These interactions support a wide range of cellular processes including cytokinesis, maintenance of cell polarity, cell adhesion, migration, and mechano-electrical transduction. To elucidate differences in the ability of isoactins to bind and stimulate the enzymatic activity of individual myosin isoforms, we characterized the interactions of human skeletal muscle α-actin, cytoplasmic β-actin, and cytoplasmic γ-actin with human myosin-7A and nonmuscle myosins-2A, -2B and -2C1. In the case of nonmuscle myosins-2A and -2B, the interaction with either cytoplasmic actin isoform results in 4-fold greater stimulation of myosin ATPase activity than was observed in the presence of α-skeletal muscle actin. Nonmuscle myosin-2C1 is most potently activated by β-actin and myosin-7A by γ-actin. Our results indicate that β- and γ-actin isoforms contribute to the modulation of nonmuscle myosin-2 and myosin-7A activity and thereby to the spatial and temporal regulation of cytoskeletal dynamics. FRET-based analyses show efficient copolymerization abilities for the actin isoforms in vitro. Experiments with hybrid actin filaments show that the extent of actomyosin coupling efficiency can be regulated by the isoform composition of actin filaments.

  9. Actin-organising properties of the muscular dystrophy protein myotilin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Nandelstadh, Pernilla; Grönholm, Mikaela; Moza, Monica; Lamberg, Arja; Savilahti, Harri; Carpén, Olli

    2005-10-15

    Myotilin is a sarcomeric Z-disc protein that binds F-actin directly and bundles actin filaments, although it does not contain a conventional actin-binding domain. Expression of mutant myotilin leads to sarcomeric alterations in the dominantly inherited limb-girdle muscular dystrophy 1A and in myofibrillar myopathy/desmin-related myopathy. Together, with previous in vitro studies, this indicates that myotilin has an important function in the assembly and maintenance of Z-discs. This study characterises further the interaction between myotilin and actin. Functionally important regions in myotilin were identified by actin pull-down and yeast two-hybrid assays and with a novel strategy that combines in vitro DNA transposition-based peptide insertion mutagenesis with phenotype analysis in yeast cells. The shortest fragment to bind actin was the second Ig domain together with a short C-terminal sequence. Concerted action of the first and second Ig domain was, however, necessary for the functional activity of myotilin, as verified by analysis of transposon mutants, actin binding and phenotypic effect in mammalian cells. Furthermore, the Ig domains flanked with N- and C-terminal regions were needed for actin-bundling, indicating that the mere actin-binding sequence was insufficient for the actin-regulating activity. None of the four known disease-associated mutations altered the actin-organising ability. These results, together with previous studies in titin and kettin, identify the Ig domain as an actin-binding unit.

  10. Human CAP1 is a key factor in the recycling of cofilin and actin for rapid actin turnover.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moriyama, Kenji; Yahara, Ichiro

    2002-04-15

    Cofilin-ADF (actin-depolymerizing factor) is an essential driver of actin-based motility. We discovered two proteins, p65 and p55, that are components of the actin-cofilin complex in a human HEK293 cell extract and identified p55 as CAP1/ASP56, a human homologue of yeast CAP/SRV2 (cyclase-associated protein). CAP is a bifunctional protein with an N-terminal domain that binds to Ras-responsive adenylyl cyclase and a C-terminal domain that inhibits actin polymerization. Surprisingly, we found that the N-terminal domain of CAP1, but not the C-terminal domain, is responsible for the interaction with the actin-cofilin complex. The N-terminal domain of CAP1 was also found to accelerate the depolymerization of F-actin at the pointed end, which was further enhanced in the presence of cofilin and/or the C-terminal domain of CAP1. Moreover, CAP1 and its C-terminal domain were observed to facilitate filament elongation at the barbed end and to stimulate ADP-ATP exchange on G-actin, a process that regenerates easily polymerizable G-actin. Although cofilin inhibited the nucleotide exchange on G-actin even in the presence of the C-terminal domain of CAP1, its N-terminal domain relieved this inhibition. Thus, CAP1 plays a key role in speeding up the turnover of actin filaments by effectively recycling cofilin and actin and through its effect on both ends of actin filament.

  11. Interaction between microtubules and the Drosophila formin Cappuccino and its effect on actin assembly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roth-Johnson, Elizabeth A; Vizcarra, Christina L; Bois, Justin S; Quinlan, Margot E

    2014-02-14

    Formin family actin nucleators are potential coordinators of the actin and microtubule cytoskeletons, as they can both nucleate actin filaments and bind microtubules in vitro. To gain a more detailed mechanistic understanding of formin-microtubule interactions and formin-mediated actin-microtubule cross-talk, we studied microtubule binding by Cappuccino (Capu), a formin involved in regulating actin and microtubule organization during Drosophila oogenesis. We found that two distinct domains within Capu, FH2 and tail, work together to promote high-affinity microtubule binding. The tail domain appears to bind microtubules through nonspecific charge-based interactions. In contrast, distinct residues within the FH2 domain are important for microtubule binding. We also report the first visualization of a formin polymerizing actin filaments in the presence of microtubules. Interestingly, microtubules are potent inhibitors of the actin nucleation activity of Capu but appear to have little effect on Capu once it is bound to the barbed end of an elongating filament. Because Capu does not simultaneously bind microtubules and assemble actin filaments in vitro, its actin assembly and microtubule binding activities likely require spatial and/or temporal regulation within the Drosophila oocyte.

  12. Interaction between Microtubules and the Drosophila Formin Cappuccino and Its Effect on Actin Assembly*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roth-Johnson, Elizabeth A.; Vizcarra, Christina L.; Bois, Justin S.; Quinlan, Margot E.

    2014-01-01

    Formin family actin nucleators are potential coordinators of the actin and microtubule cytoskeletons, as they can both nucleate actin filaments and bind microtubules in vitro. To gain a more detailed mechanistic understanding of formin-microtubule interactions and formin-mediated actin-microtubule cross-talk, we studied microtubule binding by Cappuccino (Capu), a formin involved in regulating actin and microtubule organization during Drosophila oogenesis. We found that two distinct domains within Capu, FH2 and tail, work together to promote high-affinity microtubule binding. The tail domain appears to bind microtubules through nonspecific charge-based interactions. In contrast, distinct residues within the FH2 domain are important for microtubule binding. We also report the first visualization of a formin polymerizing actin filaments in the presence of microtubules. Interestingly, microtubules are potent inhibitors of the actin nucleation activity of Capu but appear to have little effect on Capu once it is bound to the barbed end of an elongating filament. Because Capu does not simultaneously bind microtubules and assemble actin filaments in vitro, its actin assembly and microtubule binding activities likely require spatial and/or temporal regulation within the Drosophila oocyte. PMID:24362037

  13. Viruses that ride on the coat-tails of actin nucleation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newsome, Timothy P; Marzook, N Bishara

    2015-10-01

    Actin nucleation drives a diversity of critical cellular processes and the motility of a select group of viral pathogens. Vaccinia virus and baculovirus, Autographa californica multiple nucleopolyhedrovirus, recruit and activate the cellular actin nucleator, the Arp2/3 complex, at the surface of virus particles thereby instigating highly localized actin nucleation. The extension of these filaments provides a mechanical force that bestows the ability to navigate the intracellular environment and promote their infectious cycles. This review outlines the viral and cellular proteins that initiate and regulate the signalling networks leading to viral modification of the actin cytoskeleton and summarizes recent insights into the role of actin-based virus transport.

  14. Actin Rings of Power.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwayer, Cornelia; Sikora, Mateusz; Slováková, Jana; Kardos, Roland; Heisenberg, Carl-Philipp

    2016-06-20

    Circular or ring-like actin structures play important roles in various developmental and physiological processes. Commonly, these rings are composed of actin filaments and myosin motors (actomyosin) that, upon activation, trigger ring constriction. Actomyosin ring constriction, in turn, has been implicated in key cellular processes ranging from cytokinesis to wound closure. Non-constricting actin ring-like structures also form at cell-cell contacts, where they exert a stabilizing function. Here, we review recent studies on the formation and function of actin ring-like structures in various morphogenetic processes, shedding light on how those different rings have been adapted to fulfill their specific roles.

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

    CERN Document Server

    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.

  16. Dynamin2 organizes lamellipodial actin networks to orchestrate lamellar actomyosin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manisha Menon

    Full Text Available Actin networks in migrating cells exist as several interdependent structures: sheet-like networks of branched actin filaments in lamellipodia; arrays of bundled actin filaments co-assembled with myosin II in lamellae; and actin filaments that engage focal adhesions. How these dynamic networks are integrated and coordinated to maintain a coherent actin cytoskeleton in migrating cells is not known. We show that the large GTPase dynamin2 is enriched in the distal lamellipod where it regulates lamellipodial actin networks as they form and flow in U2-OS cells. Within lamellipodia, dynamin2 regulated the spatiotemporal distributions of α-actinin and cortactin, two actin-binding proteins that specify actin network architecture. Dynamin2's action on lamellipodial F-actin influenced the formation and retrograde flow of lamellar actomyosin via direct and indirect interactions with actin filaments and a finely tuned GTP hydrolysis activity. Expression in dynamin2-depleted cells of a mutant dynamin2 protein that restores endocytic activity, but not activities that remodel actin filaments, demonstrated that actin filament remodeling by dynamin2 did not depend of its functions in endocytosis. Thus, dynamin2 acts within lamellipodia to organize actin filaments and regulate assembly and flow of lamellar actomyosin. We hypothesize that through its actions on lamellipodial F-actin, dynamin2 generates F-actin structures that give rise to lamellar actomyosin and for efficient coupling of F-actin at focal adhesions. In this way, dynamin2 orchestrates the global actin cytoskeleton.

  17. Dynamics of the current filament formation and its steady-state characteristics in chalcogenide based PCM

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bogoslovskiy, Nikita; Tsendin, Konstantin

    2017-03-01

    In the phase-change memory (PCM) crystallization occurs in the high-current filament which forms during switching to the conductive state. In the present paper we conduct a numerical modeling of the current filament formation dynamics in thin chalcogenide films using an electronic-thermal model based on negative-U centers tunnel ionization and Joule heating. The key role of inhomogeneities in the filament formation process is shown. Steady-state filament parameters were obtained from the analysis of the stationary heat conduction equation. The filament formation dynamics and the steady-state filament radius and temperature could be controlled by material parameters and contact resistance. Consequently it is possible to control the size of the region wherein crystallization occurs. A good agreement with numerous experimental data leads to the conclusion that thermal effects play a significant role in CGS conduction and high-current filament formation while switching.

  18. Holding back the microfilament--structural insights into actin and the actin-monomer-binding proteins of apicomplexan parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olshina, Maya A; Wong, Wilson; Baum, Jake

    2012-05-01

    Parasites from the phylum Apicomplexa are responsible for several major diseases of man, including malaria and toxoplasmosis. These highly motile protozoa use a conserved actomyosin-based mode of movement to power tissue traversal and host cell invasion. The mode termed as 'gliding motility' relies on the dynamic turnover of actin, whose polymerisation state is controlled by a markedly limited number of identifiable regulators when compared with other eukaryotic cells. Recent studies of apicomplexan actin regulator structure-in particular those of the core triad of monomer-binding proteins, actin-depolymerising factor/cofilin, cyclase-associated protein/Srv2, and profilin-have provided new insights into possible mechanisms of actin regulation in parasite cells, highlighting divergent structural features and functions to regulators from other cellular systems. Furthermore, the unusual nature of apicomplexan actin itself is increasingly coming into the spotlight. Here, we review recent advances in understanding of the structure and function of actin and its regulators in apicomplexan parasites. In particular we explore the paradox between there being an abundance of unpolymerised actin, its having a seemingly increased potential to form filaments relative to vertebrate actin, and the apparent lack of visible, stable filaments in parasite cells.

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

    CERN Document Server

    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...

  20. Quantitation of liquid-crystalline ordering in F-actin solutions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coppin, C M; Leavis, P C

    1992-09-01

    Actin filaments (F-actin) are important determinants of cellular shape and motility. These functions depend on the collective organization of numerous filaments with respect to both position and orientation in the cytoplasm. Much of the orientational organization arises spontaneously through liquid crystal formation in concentrated F-actin solutions. In studying this phenomenon, we found that solutions of purified F-actin undergo a continuous phase transition, from the isotropic state to a liquid crystalline state, when either the mean filament length or the actin concentration is increased above its respective threshold value. The phase diagram representing the threshold filament lengths and concentrations at which the phase transition occurs is consistent with that predicted by Flory's theory on solutions of noninteracting, rigid cylinders (Flory, 1956b). However, in contrast to other predictions based on this model, we found no evidence for the coexistence of isotropic and anisotropic phases. Furthermore, the phase transition proved to be temperature dependent, which suggests the existence of orientation-dependent interfilament interactions or of a temperature-dependent filament flexibility. We developed a simple method for growing undistorted fluorescent acrylodan-labeled F-actin liquid crystals; and we derived a simple theoretical treatment by which polarization-of-fluorescence measurements could be used to quantitate, for the first time, the degree of spontaneous filament ordering (nematic order parameter) in these F-actin liquid crystals. This order parameter was found to increase monotonically with both filament length and concentration. Actin liquid crystals can readily become distorted by a process known as "texturing." Zigzaging and helicoidal liquid crystalline textures which persisted in the absence of ATP were observed through the polarizing microscope. Possible texturing mechanisms are discussed.

  1. Choice of tracks, microtubules and/or actin filaments for chloroplast photo-movement is differentially controlled by phytochrome and a blue light receptor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sato, Y; Wada, M; Kadota, A

    2001-01-01

    Light induced chloroplast movement has been studied as a model system for photoreception and actin microfilament (MF)-based intracellular motilities in plants. Chloroplast photo-accumulation and -avoidance movement is mediated by phytochrome as well as blue light (BL) receptor in the moss Physcomitrella patens. Here we report the discovery of an involvement of a microtubule (MT)-based system in addition to an MF-based system in photorelocation of chloroplasts in this moss. In the dark, MTs provided tracks for rapid movement of chloroplasts in a longitudinal direction and MFs contributed the tracks for slow movement in any direction. We found that phytochrome responses utilized only the MT-based system, while BL responses had an alternative way of moving, either along MTs or MFs. MT-based systems were mediated by both photoreceptors, but chloroplasts showed movements with different velocity and pattern between them. No apparent difference in the behavior of chloroplast movement between the accumulation and avoidance movement was detected in phytochrome responses or BL responses, except for the direction of the movement. The results presented here demonstrate that chloroplasts use both MTs and MFs for motility and that phytochrome and a BL receptor control directional photo-movement of chloroplasts through the differential regulation of these motile systems.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan Du

    Full Text Available 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.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    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...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  5. Spontaneous symmetry breaking for geometrical trajectories of actin-based motility in three dimensions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wen, Fu-Lai; Leung, Kwan-tai; Chen, Hsuan-Yi

    2016-07-01

    Actin-based motility is important for many cellular processes. In this article we extend our previous studies of an actin-propelled circular disk in two dimensions to an actin-propelled spherical bead in three dimensions. We find that for an achiral load the couplings between the motion of the load and the actin network induce a series of bifurcations, starting with a transition from rest to moving state, followed by a transition from straight to planar curves, and finally a further transition from motion in a plane to one with torsion. To address the intriguing, experimentally observed chiral motility of the bacterium Listeria monocytogenes, we also study the motility of a spherical load with a built-in chirality. For such a chiral load, stable circular trajectories are no longer found in numerical simulations. Instead, helical trajectories with handedness that depends on the chirality of the load are found. Our results reveal the relation between the symmetry of actin network and the trajectories of actin-propelled loads.

  6. Actin-binding proteins implicated in the formation of the punctate actin foci stimulated by the self-incompatibility response in Papaver.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poulter, Natalie S; Staiger, Christopher J; Rappoport, Joshua Z; Franklin-Tong, Vernonica E

    2010-03-01

    The actin cytoskeleton is a key target for signaling networks and plays a central role in translating signals into cellular responses in eukaryotic cells. Self-incompatibility (SI) is an important mechanism responsible for preventing self-fertilization. The SI system of Papaver rhoeas pollen involves a Ca(2+)-dependent signaling network, including massive actin depolymerization as one of the earliest cellular responses, followed by the formation of large actin foci. However, no analysis of these structures, which appear to be aggregates of filamentous (F-)actin based on phalloidin staining, has been carried out to date. Here, we characterize and quantify the formation of F-actin foci in incompatible Papaver pollen tubes over time. The F-actin foci increase in size over time, and we provide evidence that their formation requires actin polymerization. Once formed, these SI-induced structures are unusually stable, being resistant to treatments with latrunculin B. Furthermore, their formation is associated with changes in the intracellular localization of two actin-binding proteins, cyclase-associated protein and actin-depolymerizing factor. Two other regulators of actin dynamics, profilin and fimbrin, do not associate with the F-actin foci. This study provides, to our knowledge, the first insights into the actin-binding proteins and mechanisms involved in the formation of these intriguing structures, which appear to be actively formed during the SI response.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark S. Miller

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available 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 mechanical properties of filaments impact muscle performance.

  8. Real-time dynamics of emerging actin networks in cell-mimicking compartments.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Siddharth Deshpande

    Full Text Available Understanding the cytoskeletal functionality and its relation to other cellular components and properties is a prominent question in biophysics. The dynamics of actin cytoskeleton and its polymorphic nature are indispensable for the proper functioning of living cells. Actin bundles are involved in cell motility, environmental exploration, intracellular transport and mechanical stability. Though the viscoelastic properties of actin-based structures have been extensively probed, the underlying microstructure dynamics, especially their disassembly, is not fully understood. In this article, we explore the rich dynamics and emergent properties exhibited by actin bundles within flow-free confinements using a microfluidic set-up and epifluorescence microscopy. After forming entangled actin filaments within cell-sized quasi two-dimensional confinements, we induce their bundling using three different fundamental mechanisms: counterion condensation, depletion interactions and specific protein-protein interactions. Intriguingly, long actin filaments form emerging networks of actin bundles via percolation leading to remarkable properties such as stress generation and spindle-like intermediate structures. Simultaneous sharing of filaments in different links of the network is an important parameter, as short filaments do not form networks but segregated clusters of bundles instead. We encounter a hierarchical process of bundling and its subsequent disassembly. Additionally, our study suggests that such percolated networks are likely to exist within living cells in a dynamic fashion. These observations render a perspective about differential cytoskeletal responses towards numerous stimuli.

  9. THRUMIN1 is a light-regulated actin-bundling protein involved in chloroplast motility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whippo, Craig W; Khurana, Parul; Davis, Phillip A; DeBlasio, Stacy L; DeSloover, Daniel; Staiger, Christopher J; Hangarter, Roger P

    2011-01-11

    Chloroplast movement in response to changing light conditions optimizes photosynthetic light absorption. This repositioning is stimulated by blue light perceived via the phototropin photoreceptors and is transduced to the actin cytoskeleton. Some actin-based motility systems use filament reorganizations rather than myosin-based translocations. Recent research favors the hypothesis that chloroplast movement is driven by actin reorganization at the plasma membrane, but no proteins affecting chloroplast movements have been shown to associate with both the plasma membrane and actin filaments in vivo. Here we identified THRUMIN1 as a critical link between phototropin photoreceptor activity at the plasma membrane and actin-dependent chloroplast movements. THRUMIN1 bundles filamentous actin in vitro, and it localizes to the plasma membrane and displays light- and phototropin-dependent localization to microfilaments in vivo. These results suggest that phototropin-induced actin bundling via THRUMIN1 is important for chloroplast movement. A mammalian homolog of THRUMIN1, GRXCR1, has been implicated in auditory responses and hair cell stereocilla development as a regulator of actin architecture. Studies of THRUMIN1 will help elucidate the function of this family of eukaryotic proteins.

  10. The actin cytoskeleton may control the polar distribution of an auxin transport protein

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muday, G. K.; Hu, S.; Brady, S. R.; Davies, E. (Principal Investigator)

    2000-01-01

    The gravitropic bending of plants has long been linked to the changes in the transport of the plant hormone auxin. To understand the mechanism by which gravity alters auxin movement, it is critical to know how polar auxin transport is initially established. In shoots, polar auxin transport is basipetal (i.e., from the shoot apex toward the base). It is driven by the basal localization of the auxin efflux carrier complex. One mechanism for localizing this efflux carrier complex to the basal membrane may be through attachment to the actin cytoskeleton. The efflux carrier protein complex is believed to consist of several polypeptides, including a regulatory subunit that binds auxin transport inhibitors, such as naphthylphthalamic acid (NPA). Several lines of experimentation have been used to determine if the NPA binding protein interacts with actin filaments. The NPA binding protein has been shown to partition with the actin cytoskeleton during detergent extraction. Agents that specifically alter the polymerization state of the actin cytoskeleton change the amount of NPA binding protein and actin recovered in these cytoskeletal pellets. Actin-affinity columns were prepared with polymers of actin purified from zucchini hypocotyl tissue. NPA binding activity was eluted in a single peak from the actin filament column. Cytochalasin D, which fragments the actin cytoskeleton, was shown to reduce polar auxin transport in zucchini hypocotyls. The interaction of the NPA binding protein with the actin cytoskeleton may localize it in one plane of the plasma membrane, and thereby control the polarity of auxin transport.

  11. Cofilin-mediated actin dynamics promotes actin bundle formation during Drosophila bristle development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Jing; Wang, Heng; Guo, Xuan; Chen, Jiong

    2016-08-15

    The actin bundle is an array of linear actin filaments cross-linked by actin-bundling proteins, but its assembly and dynamics are not as well understood as those of the branched actin network. Here we used the Drosophila bristle as a model system to study actin bundle formation. We found that cofilin, a major actin disassembly factor of the branched actin network, promotes the formation and positioning of actin bundles in the developing bristles. Loss of function of cofilin or AIP1, a cofactor of cofilin, each resulted in increased F-actin levels and severe defects in actin bundle organization, with the defects from cofilin deficiency being more severe. Further analyses revealed that cofilin likely regulates actin bundle formation and positioning by the following means. First, cofilin promotes a large G-actin pool both locally and globally, likely ensuring rapid actin polymerization for bundle initiation and growth. Second, cofilin limits the size of a nonbundled actin-myosin network to regulate the positioning of actin bundles. Third, cofilin prevents incorrect assembly of branched and myosin-associated actin filament into bundles. Together these results demonstrate that the interaction between the dynamic dendritic actin network and the assembling actin bundles is critical for actin bundle formation and needs to be closely regulated.

  12. Failure assessment of aluminum liner based filament-wound hybrid riser subjected to internal hydrostatic pressure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dikshit, Vishwesh; Seng, Ong Lin; Maheshwari, Muneesh; Asundi, A.

    2015-03-01

    The present study describes the burst behavior of aluminum liner based prototype filament-wound hybrid riser under internal hydrostatic pressure. The main objective of present study is to developed an internal pressure test rig set-up for filament-wound hybrid riser and investigate the failure modes of filament-wound hybrid riser under internal hydrostatic burst pressure loading. The prototype filament-wound hybrid riser used for burst test consists of an internal aluminum liner and outer composite layer. The carbon-epoxy composites as part of the filament-wound hybrid risers were manufactured with [±55o] lay-up pattern with total composite layer thickness of 1.6 mm using a CNC filament-winding machine. The burst test was monitored by video camera which helps to analyze the failure mechanism of the fractured filament-wound hybrid riser. The Fiber Bragg Grating (FBG) sensor was used to monitor and record the strain changes during burst test of prototype filament-wound hybrid riser. This study shows good improvements in burst strength of filament-wound hybrid riser compared to the monolithic metallic riser. Since, strain measurement using FBG sensors has been testified as a reliable method, we aim to further understand in detail using this technique.

  13. Extending the molecular clutch beyond actin-based cell motility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Havrylenko, Svitlana; Mezanges, Xavier; Batchelder, Ellen; Plastino, Julie

    2014-10-01

    Many cell movements occur via polymerization of the actin cytoskeleton beneath the plasma membrane at the front of the cell, forming a protrusion called a lamellipodium, while myosin contraction squeezes forward the back of the cell. In what is known as the ‘molecular clutch’ description of cell motility, forward movement results from the engagement of the acto-myosin motor with cell-matrix adhesions, thus transmitting force to the substrate and producing movement. However during cell translocation, clutch engagement is not perfect, and as a result, the cytoskeleton slips with respect to the substrate, undergoing backward (retrograde) flow in the direction of the cell body. Retrograde flow is therefore inversely proportional to cell speed and depends on adhesion and acto-myosin dynamics. Here we asked whether the molecular clutch was a general mechanism by measuring motility and retrograde flow for the Caenorhabditis elegans sperm cell in different adhesive conditions. These cells move by adhering to the substrate and emitting a dynamic lamellipodium, but the sperm cell does not contain an acto-myosin cytoskeleton. Instead the lamellipodium is formed by the assembly of major sperm protein, which has no biochemical or structural similarity to actin. We find that these cells display the same molecular clutch characteristics as acto-myosin containing cells. We further show that retrograde flow is produced both by cytoskeletal assembly and contractility in these cells. Overall this study shows that the molecular clutch hypothesis of how polymerization is transduced into motility via adhesions is a general description of cell movement regardless of the composition of the cytoskeleton.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    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. The Human Arp2/3 Complex Is Composed of Evolutionarily Conserved Subunits and Is Localized to Cellular Regions of Dynamic Actin Filament Assembly

    OpenAIRE

    Welch, Matthew D.; Angela H. DePace; Verma, Suzie; Iwamatsu, Akihiro; Mitchison, Timothy J.

    1997-01-01

    The Arp2/3 protein complex has been implicated in the control of actin polymerization in cells. The human complex consists of seven subunits which include the actin related proteins Arp2 and Arp3, and five others referred to as p41-Arc, p34-Arc, p21-Arc, p20-Arc, and p16-Arc (Arp complex). We have determined the predicted amino acid sequence of all seven subunits. Each has homologues in diverse eukaryotes, implying that the structure and function of the complex has been conserved through evol...

  17. Changes in morphology of actin filaments and expression of alkaline phosphatase at 3D cultivation of MG-63 osteoblast-like cells on mineralized fibroin scaffolds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goncharenko, A V; Malyuchenko, N V; Moisenovich, A M; Kotlyarova, M S; Arkhipova, A Yu; Kon'kov, A S; Agapov, I I; Molochkov, A V; Moisenovich, M M; Kirpichnikov, M P

    2016-09-01

    3D cultivation of MG-63 osteoblast-like cells on mineralized fibroin scaffolds leads to an increase in the expression of alkaline phosphatase, an early marker of bone formation. Increased expression is associated with the actin cytoskeleton reorganization under the influence of 3D cultivation and osteogenic calcium phosphate component of the microcarrier.

  18. Solid friction between soft filaments

    CERN Document Server

    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...

  19. An actin cytoskeleton with evolutionarily conserved functions in the absence of canonical actin-binding proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paredez, Alexander R; Assaf, Zoe June; Sept, David; Timofejeva, Ljudmilla; Dawson, Scott C; Wang, Chung-Ju Rachel; Cande, W Z

    2011-04-12

    Giardia intestinalis, a human intestinal parasite and member of what is perhaps the earliest-diverging eukaryotic lineage, contains the most divergent eukaryotic actin identified to date and is the first eukaryote known to lack all canonical actin-binding proteins (ABPs). We sought to investigate the properties and functions of the actin cytoskeleton in Giardia to determine whether Giardia actin (giActin) has reduced or conserved roles in core cellular processes. In vitro polymerization of giActin produced filaments, indicating that this divergent actin is a true filament-forming actin. We generated an anti-giActin antibody to localize giActin throughout the cell cycle. GiActin localized to the cortex, nuclei, internal axonemes, and formed C-shaped filaments along the anterior of the cell and a flagella-bundling helix. These structures were regulated with the cell cycle and in encysting cells giActin was recruited to the Golgi-like cyst wall processing vesicles. Knockdown of giActin demonstrated that giActin functions in cell morphogenesis, membrane trafficking, and cytokinesis. Additionally, Giardia contains a single G protein, giRac, which affects the Giardia actin cytoskeleton independently of known target ABPs. These results imply that there exist ancestral and perhaps conserved roles for actin in core cellular processes that are independent of canonical ABPs. Of medical significance, the divergent giActin cytoskeleton is essential and commonly used actin-disrupting drugs do not depolymerize giActin structures. Therefore, the giActin cytoskeleton is a promising drug target for treating giardiasis, as we predict drugs that interfere with the Giardia actin cytoskeleton will not affect the mammalian host.

  20. Association of Hepatitis C Virus Replication Complexes with Microtubules and Actin Filaments Is Dependent on the Interaction of NS3 and NS5A▿

    OpenAIRE

    Lai, Chao-Kuen; Jeng, King-Song; Machida, Keigo; Lai, Michael M. C.

    2008-01-01

    The hepatitis C virus (HCV) RNA replication complex (RC), which is composed of viral nonstructural (NS) proteins and host cellular proteins, replicates the viral RNA genome in association with intracellular membranes. Two viral NS proteins, NS3 and NS5A, are essential elements of the RC. Here, by using immunoprecipitation and fluorescence resonance energy transfer assays, we demonstrated that NS3 and NS5A interact with tubulin and actin. Furthermore, immunofluorescence microscopy and electron...

  1. Load fluctuations drive actin network growth

    CERN Document Server

    Shaevitz, Joshua W

    2007-01-01

    The growth of actin filament networks is a fundamental biological process that drives a variety of cellular and intracellular motions. During motility, eukaryotic cells and intracellular pathogens are propelled by actin networks organized by nucleation-promoting factors, which trigger the formation of nascent filaments off the side of existing filaments in the network. A Brownian ratchet (BR) mechanism has been proposed to couple actin polymerization to cellular movements, whereby thermal motions are rectified by the addition of actin monomers at the end of growing filaments. Here, by following actin--propelled microspheres using three--dimensional laser tracking, we find that beads adhered to the growing network move via an object--fluctuating BR. Velocity varies with the amplitude of thermal fluctuation and inversely with viscosity as predicted for a BR. In addition, motion is saltatory with a broad distribution of step sizes that is correlated in time. These data point to a model in which thermal fluctuati...

  2. Nucleus-associated actin in Amoeba proteus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berdieva, Mariia; Bogolyubov, Dmitry; Podlipaeva, Yuliya; Goodkov, Andrew

    2016-10-01

    The presence, spatial distribution and forms of intranuclear and nucleus-associated cytoplasmic actin were studied in Amoeba proteus with immunocytochemical approaches. Labeling with different anti-actin antibodies and staining with TRITC-phalloidin and fluorescent deoxyribonuclease I were used. We showed that actin is abundant within the nucleus as well as in the cytoplasm of A. proteus cells. According to DNase I experiments, the predominant form of intranuclear actin is G-actin which is associated with chromatin strands. Besides, unpolymerized actin was shown to participate in organization of a prominent actin layer adjacent to the outer surface of nuclear envelope. No significant amount of F-actin was found in the nucleus. At the same time, the amoeba nucleus is enclosed in a basket-like structure formed by circumnuclear actin filaments and bundles connected with global cytoplasmic actin cytoskeleton. A supposed architectural function of actin filaments was studied by treatment with actin-depolymerizing agent latrunculin A. It disassembled the circumnuclear actin system, but did not affect the intranuclear chromatin structure. The results obtained for amoeba cells support the modern concept that actin is involved in fundamental nuclear processes that have evolved in the cells of multicellular organisms.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krishnan, Karthik; Aono, Masakazu; Tsuruoka, Tohru

    2016-08-01

    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.

  4. Biophysically realistic filament bending dynamics in agent-based biological simulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alberts, Jonathan B

    2009-01-01

    An appealing tool for study of the complex biological behaviors that can emerge from networks of simple molecular interactions is an agent-based, computational simulation that explicitly tracks small-scale local interactions--following thousands to millions of states through time. For many critical cell processes (e.g. cytokinetic furrow specification, nuclear centration, cytokinesis), the flexible nature of cytoskeletal filaments is likely to be critical. Any computer model that hopes to explain the complex emergent behaviors in these processes therefore needs to encode filament flexibility in a realistic manner. Here I present a numerically convenient and biophysically realistic method for modeling cytoskeletal filament flexibility in silico. Each cytoskeletal filament is represented by a series of rigid segments linked end-to-end in series with a variable attachment point for the translational elastic element. This connection scheme allows an empirically tuning, for a wide range of segment sizes, viscosities, and time-steps, that endows any filament species with the experimentally observed (or theoretically expected) static force deflection, relaxation time-constant, and thermal writhing motions. I additionally employ a unique pair of elastic elements--one representing the axial and the other the bending rigidity- that formulate the restoring force in terms of single time-step constraint resolution. This method is highly local -adjacent rigid segments of a filament only interact with one another through constraint forces-and is thus well-suited to simulations in which arbitrary additional forces (e.g. those representing interactions of a filament with other bodies or cross-links / entanglements between filaments) may be present. Implementation in code is straightforward; Java source code is available at www.celldynamics.org.

  5. Biophysically realistic filament bending dynamics in agent-based biological simulation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonathan B Alberts

    Full Text Available An appealing tool for study of the complex biological behaviors that can emerge from networks of simple molecular interactions is an agent-based, computational simulation that explicitly tracks small-scale local interactions--following thousands to millions of states through time. For many critical cell processes (e.g. cytokinetic furrow specification, nuclear centration, cytokinesis, the flexible nature of cytoskeletal filaments is likely to be critical. Any computer model that hopes to explain the complex emergent behaviors in these processes therefore needs to encode filament flexibility in a realistic manner. Here I present a numerically convenient and biophysically realistic method for modeling cytoskeletal filament flexibility in silico. Each cytoskeletal filament is represented by a series of rigid segments linked end-to-end in series with a variable attachment point for the translational elastic element. This connection scheme allows an empirically tuning, for a wide range of segment sizes, viscosities, and time-steps, that endows any filament species with the experimentally observed (or theoretically expected static force deflection, relaxation time-constant, and thermal writhing motions. I additionally employ a unique pair of elastic elements--one representing the axial and the other the bending rigidity- that formulate the restoring force in terms of single time-step constraint resolution. This method is highly local -adjacent rigid segments of a filament only interact with one another through constraint forces-and is thus well-suited to simulations in which arbitrary additional forces (e.g. those representing interactions of a filament with other bodies or cross-links / entanglements between filaments may be present. Implementation in code is straightforward; Java source code is available at www.celldynamics.org.

  6. Yersinia effector YopO uses actin as bait to phosphorylate proteins that regulate actin polymerization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Wei Lin; Grimes, Jonathan M; Robinson, Robert C

    2015-03-01

    Pathogenic Yersinia species evade host immune systems through the injection of Yersinia outer proteins (Yops) into phagocytic cells. One Yop, YopO, also known as YpkA, induces actin-filament disruption, impairing phagocytosis. Here we describe the X-ray structure of Yersinia enterocolitica YopO in complex with actin, which reveals that YopO binds to an actin monomer in a manner that blocks polymerization yet allows the bound actin to interact with host actin-regulating proteins. SILAC-MS and biochemical analyses confirm that actin-polymerization regulators such as VASP, EVL, WASP, gelsolin and the formin diaphanous 1 are directly sequestered and phosphorylated by YopO through formation of ternary complexes with actin. This leads to a model in which YopO at the membrane sequesters actin from polymerization while using the bound actin as bait to recruit, phosphorylate and misregulate host actin-regulating proteins to disrupt phagocytosis.

  7. Interaction of calponin with actin and its functional implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kołakowski, J; Makuch, R; Stepkowski, D; Dabrowska, R

    1995-01-01

    Titration of F-actin with calponin causes the formation of two types of complexes. One, at saturation, contains a lower ratio of calponin to actin (0.5:1) and is insoluble at physiological ionic strength. The another is soluble, with a higher ratio of calponin to actin (1:1). Electron microscopy revealed that the former complex consists of paracrystalline bundles of actin filaments, whereas the latter consists of separate filaments. Ca(2+)-calmodulin causes dissociation of bundles with simultaneous increase in the number of separate calponin-containing filaments. Further increase in the calmodulin concentration results in full release of calponin from actin filaments. In motility assays, calponin, when added together with ATP to actin filaments complexed with immobilized myosin, evoked a decrease in both the number and velocity of moving actin filaments. Addition of calponin to actin filaments before their binding to myosin resulted in a formation of actin filament bundles which were dissociated by ATP. Images Figure 2 PMID:7864810

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  9. Visualization of endothelial actin cytoskeleton in the mouse retina.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessia Fraccaroli

    Full Text Available Angiogenesis requires coordinated changes in cell shape of endothelial cells (ECs, orchestrated by the actin cytoskeleton. The mechanisms that regulate this rearrangement in vivo are poorly understood - largely because of the difficulty to visualize filamentous actin (F-actin structures with sufficient resolution. Here, we use transgenic mice expressing Lifeact-EGFP to visualize F-actin in ECs. We show that in the retina, Lifeact-EGFP expression is largely restricted to ECs allowing detailed visualization of F-actin in ECs in situ. Lifeact-EGFP labels actin associated with cell-cell junctions, apical and basal membranes and highlights actin-based structures such as filopodia and stress fiber-like cytoplasmic bundles. We also show that in the skin and the skeletal muscle, Lifeact-EGFP is highly expressed in vascular mural cells (vMCs, enabling vMC imaging. In summary, our results indicate that the Lifeact-EGFP transgenic mouse in combination with the postnatal retinal angiogenic model constitutes an excellent system for vascular cell biology research. Our approach is ideally suited to address structural and mechanistic details of angiogenic processes, such as endothelial tip cell migration and fusion, EC polarization or lumen formation.

  10. Prostaglandins temporally regulate cytoplasmic actin bundle formation during Drosophila oogenesis

    OpenAIRE

    Spracklen, Andrew J.; Kelpsch, Daniel J.; Chen, Xiang; Spracklen, Cassandra N.; Tootle, Tina L.

    2014-01-01

    Prostaglandins (PGs)—lipid signals produced downstream of cyclooxygenase (COX) enzymes—regulate actin dynamics in cell culture and platelets, but their roles during development are largely unknown. Here we define a new role for Pxt, the Drosophila COX-like enzyme, in regulating the actin cytoskeleton—temporal restriction of actin remodeling during oogenesis. PGs are required for actin filament bundle formation during stage 10B (S10B). In addition, loss of Pxt results in extensive early actin ...

  11. Molecular architecture of synaptic actin cytoskeleton in hippocampal neurons reveals a mechanism of dendritic spine morphogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korobova, Farida; Svitkina, Tatyana

    2010-01-01

    Excitatory synapses in the brain play key roles in learning and memory. The formation and functions of postsynaptic mushroom-shaped structures, dendritic spines, and possibly of presynaptic terminals, rely on actin cytoskeleton remodeling. However, the cytoskeletal architecture of synapses remains unknown hindering the understanding of synapse morphogenesis. Using platinum replica electron microscopy, we characterized the cytoskeletal organization and molecular composition of dendritic spines, their precursors, dendritic filopodia, and presynaptic boutons. A branched actin filament network containing Arp2/3 complex and capping protein was a dominant feature of spine heads and presynaptic boutons. Surprisingly, the spine necks and bases, as well as dendritic filopodia, also contained a network, rather than a bundle, of branched and linear actin filaments that was immunopositive for Arp2/3 complex, capping protein, and myosin II, but not fascin. Thus, a tight actin filament bundle is not necessary for structural support of elongated filopodia-like protrusions. Dynamically, dendritic filopodia emerged from densities in the dendritic shaft, which by electron microscopy contained branched actin network associated with dendritic microtubules. We propose that dendritic spine morphogenesis begins from an actin patch elongating into a dendritic filopodium, which tip subsequently expands via Arp2/3 complex-dependent nucleation and which length is modulated by myosin II-dependent contractility.

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

    CERN Document Server

    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...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-08-08

    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.

  14. Branching of keratin intermediate filaments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    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.

  16. Sarcomeric pattern formation by actin cluster coalescence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  17. Sarcomeric Pattern Formation by Actin Cluster Coalescence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friedrich, Benjamin M.; Fischer-Friedrich, Elisabeth; Gov, Nir S.; Safran, Samuel A.

    2012-01-01

    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. PMID:22685394

  18. Effects of latrunculin B on the actin cytoskeleton and hyphal growth in Phytophthora infestans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ketelaar, Tijs; Meijer, Harold J G; Spiekerman, Marjolein; Weide, Rob; Govers, Francine

    2012-12-01

    The actin cytoskeleton is conserved in all eukaryotes, but its functions vary among different organisms. In oomycetes, the function of the actin cytoskeleton has received relatively little attention. We have performed a bioinformatics study and show that oomycete actin genes fall within a distinct clade that is divergent from plant, fungal and vertebrate actin genes. To obtain a better understanding of the functions of the actin cytoskeleton in hyphal growth of oomycetes, we studied the actin organization in Phytophthora infestans hyphae and the consequences of treatment with the actin depolymerising drug latrunculin B (latB). This revealed that latB treatment causes a concentration dependent inhibition of colony expansion and aberrant hyphal growth. The most obvious aberrations observed upon treatment with 0.1 μM latB were increased hyphal branching and irregular tube diameters whereas at higher concentrations latB (0.5 and 1 μM) tips of expanding hyphae changed into balloon-like shapes. This aberrant growth correlated with changes in the organization of the actin cytoskeleton. In untreated hyphae, staining with fluorescently tagged phalloidin revealed two populations of actin filaments: long, axially oriented actin filament cables and cortical actin filament plaques. Two hyphal subtypes were recognized, one containing only plaques and the other containing both cables and plaques. In the latter, some hyphae had an apical zone without actin filament plaques. Upon latB treatment, the proportion of hyphae without actin filament cables increased and there were more hyphae with a short apical zone without actin filament plaques. In general, actin filament plaques were more resilient against actin depolymerisation than actin filament cables. Besides disturbing hyphal growth and actin organization, actin depolymerisation also affected the positioning of nuclei. In the presence of latB, the distance between nuclei and the hyphal tip decreased, suggesting that the actin

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  20. The chloroplast outer membrane protein CHUP1 interacts with actin and profilin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt von Braun, Serena; Schleiff, Enrico

    2008-04-01

    Chloroplasts accumulate in response to low light, whereas high light induces an actin-dependent avoidance movement. This is a long known process, but its molecular base is barely understood. Only recently first components of the blue light perceiving signal cascade initiating this process were described. Among these, a protein was identified by the analysis of a deletion mutant in the corresponding gene resulting in a chloroplast unusual positioning phenotype. The protein was termed CHUP1 and initial results suggested chloroplast localization. We demonstrate that the protein is indeed exclusively and directly targeted to the chloroplast surface. The analysis of the deletion mutant of CHUP1 using microarray analysis shows an influence on the expression of genes found to be up-regulated, but not on genes found to be down-regulated upon high light exposure in wild-type. Analyzing a putative role of CHUP1 as a linker between chloroplasts and the cytoskeleton, we demonstrate an interaction with actin, which is independent on the filamentation status of actin. Moreover, binding of CHUP1 to profilin -- an actin modifying protein -- could be shown and an enhancing effect of CHUP1 on the interaction of profilin to actin is demonstrated. Therefore, a role of CHUP1 in bridging chloroplasts to actin filaments and a regulatory function in actin polymerization can be discussed.

  1. Dissecting principles governing actin assembly using yeast extracts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michelot, Alphée; Drubin, David G

    2014-01-01

    In this chapter, we describe recent protocols that we have developed to trigger actin assembly and actin-based motility in yeast cell extracts. Our method allows for the fast preparation of yeast extracts that are competent in dynamic assembly of distinct actin filament structures of biologically appropriate protein composition. Compared to previous extract-based systems using other eukaryotic cell types, yeast provides a unique advantage for combining reconstituted assays with the preparation of extracts from genetically modified yeast strains. We present a global strategy for dissecting the functions of individual proteins, where the activities of the proteins are analyzed in systems of variable complexity, ranging from simple mixtures of pure proteins to the full complexity of a cell's cytoplasm.

  2. Freely suspended actin cortex models on arrays of microfabricated pillars

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Roos, Wouter H.; Roth, Alexander; Konle, Johannes; Presting, Hartmut; Sackmann, Erich; Spatz, Joachim P.

    2003-01-01

    Actin networking across pillar-tops: Actin filaments have been self-assembled onto microscopic silicon pillars, forming quasi-two-dimensional networks (see graphic) and creating novel possibilities for mimicking functions of the cellular actin cortex on solid-state devices.

  3. Automated quantification and sizing of unbranched filamentous cyanobacteria by model-based object-oriented image analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeder, Michael; Van den Wyngaert, Silke; Köster, Oliver; Felder, Kathrin M; Pernthaler, Jakob

    2010-03-01

    Quantification and sizing of filamentous cyanobacteria in environmental samples or cultures are time-consuming and are often performed by using manual or semiautomated microscopic analysis. Automation of conventional image analysis is difficult because filaments may exhibit great variations in length and patchy autofluorescence. Moreover, individual filaments frequently cross each other in microscopic preparations, as deduced by modeling. This paper describes a novel approach based on object-oriented image analysis to simultaneously determine (i) filament number, (ii) individual filament lengths, and (iii) the cumulative filament length of unbranched cyanobacterial morphotypes in fluorescent microscope images in a fully automated high-throughput manner. Special emphasis was placed on correct detection of overlapping objects by image analysis and on appropriate coverage of filament length distribution by using large composite images. The method was validated with a data set for Planktothrix rubescens from field samples and was compared with manual filament tracing, the line intercept method, and the Utermöhl counting approach. The computer program described allows batch processing of large images from any appropriate source and annotation of detected filaments. It requires no user interaction, is available free, and thus might be a useful tool for basic research and drinking water quality control.

  4. LL-37 induces polymerization and bundling of actin and affects actin structure.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Asaf Sol

    Full Text Available Actin exists as a monomer (G-actin which can be polymerized to filaments F-actin that under the influence of actin-binding proteins and polycations bundle and contribute to the formation of the cytoskeleton. Bundled actin from lysed cells increases the viscosity of sputum in lungs of cystic fibrosis patients. The human host defense peptide LL-37 was previously shown to induce actin bundling and was thus hypothesized to contribute to the pathogenicity of this disease. In this work, interactions between actin and the cationic LL-37 were studied by optical, proteolytic and surface plasmon resonance methods and compared to those obtained with scrambled LL-37 and with the cationic protein lysozyme. We show that LL-37 binds strongly to CaATP-G-actin while scrambled LL-37 does not. While LL-37, at superstoichiometric LL-37/actin concentrations polymerizes MgATP-G-actin, at lower non-polymerizing concentrations LL-37 inhibits actin polymerization by MgCl(2 or NaCl. LL-37 bundles Mg-F-actin filaments both at low and physiological ionic strength when in equimolar or higher concentrations than those of actin. The LL-37 induced bundles are significantly less sensitive to increase in ionic strength than those induced by scrambled LL-37 and lysozyme. LL-37 in concentrations lower than those needed for actin polymerization or bundling, accelerates cleavage of both monomer and polymer actin by subtilisin. Our results indicate that the LL-37-actin interaction is partially electrostatic and partially hydrophobic and that a specific actin binding sequence in the peptide is responsible for the hydrophobic interaction. LL-37-induced bundles, which may contribute to the accumulation of sputum in cystic fibrosis, are dissociated very efficiently by DNase-1 and also by cofilin.

  5. The design of MACs (minimal actin cortices).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vogel, Sven K; Heinemann, Fabian; Chwastek, Grzegorz; Schwille, Petra

    2013-11-01

    The actin cell cortex in eukaryotic cells is a key player in controlling and maintaining the shape of cells, and in driving major shape changes such as in cytokinesis. It is thereby constantly being remodeled. Cell shape changes require forces acting on membranes that are generated by the interplay of membrane coupled actin filaments and assemblies of myosin motors. Little is known about how their interaction regulates actin cell cortex remodeling and cell shape changes. Because of the vital importance of actin, myosin motors and the cell membrane, selective in vivo experiments and manipulations are often difficult to perform or not feasible. Thus, the intelligent design of minimal in vitro systems for actin-myosin-membrane interactions could pave a way for investigating actin cell cortex mechanics in a detailed and quantitative manner. Here, we present and discuss the design of several bottom-up in vitro systems accomplishing the coupling of actin filaments to artificial membranes, where key parameters such as actin densities and membrane properties can be varied in a controlled manner. Insights gained from these in vitro systems may help to uncover fundamental principles of how exactly actin-myosin-membrane interactions govern actin cortex remodeling and membrane properties for cell shape changes.

  6. Actin-dependence of the chloroplast cold positioning response in the liverwort Marchantia polymorpha L.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shun Kimura

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The subcellular positioning of chloroplasts can be changed by alterations in the environment such as light and temperature. For example, in leaf mesophyll cells, chloroplasts localize along anticlinal cell walls under high-intensity light, and along periclinal cell walls under low-intensity light. These types of positioning responses are involved in photosynthetic optimization. In light-mediated chloroplast positioning responses, chloroplasts move to the appropriate positions in an actin-dependent manner, although some exceptions also depend on microtubule. Even under low-intensity light, at low temperature (e.g., 5°C, chloroplasts localize along anticlinal cell walls; this phenomenon is termed chloroplast cold positioning. In this study, we analyzed whether chloroplast cold positioning is dependent on actin filaments and/or microtubules in the liverwort Marchantia polymorpha L. When liverwort cells were treated with drugs for the de-polymerization of actin filaments, chloroplast cold positioning was completely inhibited. In contrast, chloroplast cold positioning was not affected by treatment with a drug for the de-polymerization of microtubules. These observations indicate the actin-dependence of chloroplast cold positioning in M. polymorpha. Actin filaments during the chloroplast cold positioning response were visualized by using fluorescent probes based on fluorescent proteins in living liverwort cells, and thus, their behavior during the chloroplast cold positioning response was documented.

  7. Myo1c binding to submembrane actin mediates insulin-induced tethering of GLUT4 vesicles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boguslavsky, Shlomit; Chiu, Tim; Foley, Kevin P; Osorio-Fuentealba, Cesar; Antonescu, Costin N; Bayer, K Ulrich; Bilan, Philip J; Klip, Amira

    2012-10-01

    GLUT4-containing vesicles cycle between the plasma membrane and intracellular compartments. Insulin promotes GLUT4 exocytosis by regulating GLUT4 vesicle arrival at the cell periphery and its subsequent tethering, docking, and fusion with the plasma membrane. The molecular machinery involved in GLUT4 vesicle tethering is unknown. We show here that Myo1c, an actin-based motor protein that associates with membranes and actin filaments, is required for insulin-induced vesicle tethering in muscle cells. Myo1c was found to associate with both mobile and tethered GLUT4 vesicles and to be required for vesicle capture in the total internal reflection fluorescence (TIRF) zone beneath the plasma membrane. Myo1c knockdown or overexpression of an actin binding-deficient Myo1c mutant abolished insulin-induced vesicle immobilization, increased GLUT4 vesicle velocity in the TIRF zone, and prevented their externalization. Conversely, Myo1c overexpression immobilized GLUT4 vesicles in the TIRF zone and promoted insulin-induced GLUT4 exposure to the extracellular milieu. Myo1c also contributed to insulin-dependent actin filament remodeling. Thus we propose that interaction of vesicular Myo1c with cortical actin filaments is required for insulin-mediated tethering of GLUT4 vesicles and for efficient GLUT4 surface delivery in muscle cells.

  8. Actin filament-associated protein 1 (AFAP-1) is a key mediator in inflammatory signaling-induced rapid attenuation of intrinsic P-gp function in human brain capillary endothelial cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoshi, Yutaro; Uchida, Yasuo; Tachikawa, Masanori; Ohtsuki, Sumio; Terasaki, Tetsuya

    2017-01-23

    The purpose of this study was to identify regulatory molecule(s) involved in the inflammatory signaling-induced decrease in P-glycoprotein (P-gp) efflux function at the blood-brain barrier (BBB) that may occur in brain diseases. We confirmed that in vivo P-gp efflux activity at the BBB was decreased without any change in P-gp protein expression level in a mouse model of acute inflammation induced by 3 mg/kg lipopolysaccharide. In a human BBB model cell line (human brain capillary endothelial cells; hCMEC/D3), 1-h treatment with 10 ng/mL tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α; an inflammatory mediator) rapidly reduced P-gp efflux activity, but had no effect on P-gp protein expression level. To clarify the non-transcriptional mechanism that causes the decrease in intrinsic efflux activity of P-gp in acute inflammation, we applied comprehensive quantitative phosphoproteomics to compare hCMEC/D3 cells treated with TNF-α and vehicle (control). Actin filament-associated protein-1 (AFAP-1), MAPK1, and transcription factor AP-1 (AP-1) were significantly phosphorylated in TNF-α-treated cells, and were selected as candidate proteins. In validation experiments, knockdown of AFAP-1 expression blocked the reduction in P-gp efflux activity by TNF-α treatment, whereas inhibition of MAPK function or knockdown of AP-1 expression did not. Quantitative targeted absolute proteomics revealed that the reduction in P-gp activity by TNF-α did not require any change in P-gp protein expression levels in the plasma membrane. Our results demonstrate that AFAP-1 is a key mediator in the inflammatory signaling-induced, translocation-independent rapid attenuation of P-gp efflux activity in human brain capillary endothelial cells.

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

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    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.

  10. CNS myelin wrapping is driven by actin disassembly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zuchero, J Bradley; Fu, Meng-Meng; Sloan, Steven A; Ibrahim, Adiljan; Olson, Andrew; Zaremba, Anita; Dugas, Jason C; Wienbar, Sophia; Caprariello, Andrew V; Kantor, Christopher; Leonoudakis, Dmitri; Leonoudakus, Dmitri; Lariosa-Willingham, Karen; Kronenberg, Golo; Gertz, Karen; Soderling, Scott H; Miller, Robert H; Barres, Ben A

    2015-07-27

    Myelin is essential in vertebrates for the rapid propagation of action potentials, but the molecular mechanisms driving its formation remain largely unknown. Here we show that the initial stage of process extension and axon ensheathment by oligodendrocytes requires dynamic actin filament assembly by the Arp2/3 complex. Unexpectedly, subsequent myelin wrapping coincides with the upregulation of actin disassembly proteins and rapid disassembly of the oligodendrocyte actin cytoskeleton and does not require Arp2/3. Inducing loss of actin filaments drives oligodendrocyte membrane spreading and myelin wrapping in vivo, and the actin disassembly factor gelsolin is required for normal wrapping. We show that myelin basic protein, a protein essential for CNS myelin wrapping whose role has been unclear, is required for actin disassembly, and its loss phenocopies loss of actin disassembly proteins. Together, these findings provide insight into the molecular mechanism of myelin wrapping and identify it as an actin-independent form of mammalian cell motility.

  11. The pros and cons of common actin labeling tools for visualizing actin dynamics during Drosophila oogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spracklen, Andrew J; Fagan, Tiffany N; Lovander, Kaylee E; Tootle, Tina L

    2014-09-15

    Dynamic remodeling of the actin cytoskeleton is required for both development and tissue homeostasis. While fixed image analysis has provided significant insight into such events, a complete understanding of cytoskeletal dynamics requires live imaging. Numerous tools for the live imaging of actin have been generated by fusing the actin-binding domain from an actin-interacting protein to a fluorescent protein. Here we comparatively assess the utility of three such tools--Utrophin, Lifeact, and F-tractin--for characterizing the actin remodeling events occurring within the germline-derived nurse cells during Drosophila mid-oogenesis or follicle development. Specifically, we used the UAS/GAL4 system to express these tools at different levels and in different cells, and analyzed these tools for effects on fertility, alterations in the actin cytoskeleton, and ability to label filamentous actin (F-actin) structures by both fixed and live imaging. While both Utrophin and Lifeact robustly label F-actin structures within the Drosophila germline, when strongly expressed they cause sterility and severe actin defects including cortical actin breakdown resulting in multi-nucleate nurse cells, early F-actin filament and aggregate formation during stage 9 (S9), and disorganized parallel actin filament bundles during stage 10B (S10B). However, by using a weaker germline GAL4 driver in combination with a higher temperature, Utrophin can label F-actin with minimal defects. Additionally, strong Utrophin expression within the germline causes F-actin formation in the nurse cell nuclei and germinal vesicle during mid-oogenesis. Similarly, Lifeact expression results in nuclear F-actin only within the germinal vesicle. F-tractin expresses at a lower level than the other two labeling tools, but labels cytoplasmic F-actin structures well without causing sterility or striking actin defects. Together these studies reveal how critical it is to evaluate the utility of each actin labeling tool

  12. Influence of polarity of set voltage on the properties of conductive filaments in NiO based nonvolatile memory device

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Hui-Yu; Li, Zhi-Qing

    2017-03-01

    In this paper, we realize the coexistence of bipolar and unipolar resistive switching (RS) in one Pt-Ir/NiO/TiB1+δ cell. The types of RS are controlled by polarity of set voltage and are free from the current compliance. Based on this coexistence, the set voltage and characters of filaments formed in RS are studied. The results show that the types of filaments also show polarity dependence on the set voltage. The positive set voltage can induce metallic filaments while the negative set voltage can result in semiconductor filaments. It reveals that the distribution of magnitude of set voltage shows abnormal polarity dependence in our devices. The combination the theory of interaction between oxygen vacancy defects and one-carrier impact ionization theory of breakdown account for these results. The influence of filament properties on RS types is also discussed.

  13. Structure and mechanism of mouse cyclase-associated protein (CAP1) in regulating actin dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jansen, Silvia; Collins, Agnieszka; Golden, Leslie; Sokolova, Olga; Goode, Bruce L

    2014-10-31

    Srv2/CAP is a conserved actin-binding protein with important roles in driving cellular actin dynamics in diverse animal, fungal, and plant species. However, there have been conflicting reports about whether the activities of Srv2/CAP are conserved, particularly between yeast and mammalian homologs. Yeast Srv2 has two distinct functions in actin turnover: its hexameric N-terminal-half enhances cofilin-mediated severing of filaments, while its C-terminal-half catalyzes dissociation of cofilin from ADP-actin monomers and stimulates nucleotide exchange. Here, we dissected the structure and function of mouse CAP1 to better understand its mechanistic relationship to yeast Srv2. Although CAP1 has a shorter N-terminal oligomerization sequence compared with Srv2, we find that the N-terminal-half of CAP1 (N-CAP1) forms hexameric structures with six protrusions, similar to N-Srv2. Further, N-CAP1 autonomously binds to F-actin and decorates the sides and ends of filaments, altering F-actin structure and enhancing cofilin-mediated severing. These activities depend on conserved surface residues on the helical-folded domain. Moreover, N-CAP1 enhances yeast cofilin-mediated severing, and conversely, yeast N-Srv2 enhances human cofilin-mediated severing, highlighting the mechanistic conservation between yeast and mammals. Further, we demonstrate that the C-terminal actin-binding β-sheet domain of CAP1 is sufficient to catalyze nucleotide-exchange of ADP-actin monomers, while in the presence of cofilin this activity additionally requires the WH2 domain. Thus, the structures, activities, and mechanisms of mouse and yeast Srv2/CAP homologs are remarkably well conserved, suggesting that the same activities and mechanisms underlie many of the diverse actin-based functions ascribed to Srv2/CAP homologs in different organisms.

  14. CAS-1, a C. elegans cyclase-associated protein, is required for sarcomeric actin assembly in striated muscle

    OpenAIRE

    Nomura, Kazumi; Ono, Kanako; Ono, Shoichiro

    2012-01-01

    Assembly of contractile apparatuses in striated muscle requires precisely regulated reorganization of the actin cytoskeletal proteins into sarcomeric organization. Regulation of actin filament dynamics is one of the essential processes of myofibril assembly, but the mechanism of actin regulation in striated muscle is not clearly understood. Actin depolymerizing factor (ADF)/cofilin is a key enhancer of actin filament dynamics in striated muscle in both vertebrates and nematodes. Here, we repo...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  16. Resemblance of actin-binding protein/actin gels to covalently crosslinked networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janmey, Paul A.; Hvidt, Søren; Lamb, Jennifer; Stossel, Thomas P.

    1990-05-01

    THE maintainance of the shape of cells is often due to their surface elasticity, which arises mainly from an actin-rich cytoplasmic cortex1,2. On locomotion, phagocytosis or fission, however, these cells become partially fluid-like. The finding of proteins that can bind to actin and control the assembly of, or crosslink, actin filaments, and of intracellular messages that regulate the activities of some of these actin-binding proteins, indicates that such 'gel sol' transformations result from the rearrangement of cortical actin-rich networks3. Alternatively, on the basis of a study of the mechanical properties of mixtures of actin filaments and an Acanthamoeba actin-binding protein, α-actinin, it has been proposed that these transformations can be accounted for by rapid exchange of crosslinks between actin filaments4: the cortical network would be solid when the deformation rate is greater than the rate of crosslink exchange, but would deform or 'creep' when deformation is slow enough to permit crosslinker molecules to rearrange. Here we report, however, that mixtures of actin filaments and actin-binding protein (ABP), an actin crosslinking protein of many higher eukaryotes, form gels Theologically equivalent to covalently crosslinked networks. These gels do not creep in response to applied stress on a time scale compatible with most cell-surface movements. These findings support a more complex and controlled mechanism underlying the dynamic mechanical properties of cortical cytoplasm, and can explain why cells do not collapse under the constant shear forces that often exist in tissues.

  17. The role of actin turnover in retrograde actin network flow in neuronal growth cones.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Van Goor

    Full Text Available The balance of actin filament polymerization and depolymerization maintains a steady state network treadmill in neuronal growth cones essential for motility and guidance. Here we have investigated the connection between depolymerization and treadmilling dynamics. We show that polymerization-competent barbed ends are concentrated at the leading edge and depolymerization is distributed throughout the peripheral domain. We found a high-to-low G-actin gradient between peripheral and central domains. Inhibiting turnover with jasplakinolide collapsed this gradient and lowered leading edge barbed end density. Ultrastructural analysis showed dramatic reduction of leading edge actin filament density and filament accumulation in central regions. Live cell imaging revealed that the leading edge retracted even as retrograde actin flow rate decreased exponentially. Inhibition of myosin II activity before jasplakinolide treatment lowered baseline retrograde flow rates and prevented leading edge retraction. Myosin II activity preferentially affected filopodial bundle disassembly distinct from the global effects of jasplakinolide on network turnover. We propose that growth cone retraction following turnover inhibition resulted from the persistence of myosin II contractility even as leading edge assembly rates decreased. The buildup of actin filaments in central regions combined with monomer depletion and reduced polymerization from barbed ends suggests a mechanism for the observed exponential decay in actin retrograde flow. Our results show that growth cone motility is critically dependent on continuous disassembly of the peripheral actin network.

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

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    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. Cyclase-associated protein (CAP) acts directly on F-actin to accelerate cofilin-mediated actin severing across the range of physiological pH.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Normoyle, Kieran P M; Brieher, William M

    2012-10-12

    Fast actin depolymerization is necessary for cells to rapidly reorganize actin filament networks. Utilizing a Listeria fluorescent actin comet tail assay to monitor actin disassembly rates, we observed that although a mixture of actin disassembly factors (cofilin, coronin, and actin-interacting protein 1 is sufficient to disassemble actin comet tails in the presence of physiological G-actin concentrations this mixture was insufficient to disassemble actin comet tails in the presence of physiological F-actin concentrations. Using biochemical complementation, we purified cyclase-associated protein (CAP) from thymus extracts as a factor that protects against the inhibition of excess F-actin. CAP has been shown to participate in actin dynamics but has been thought to act by liberating cofilin from ADP·G-actin monomers to restore cofilin activity. However, we found that CAP augments cofilin-mediated disassembly by accelerating the rate of cofilin-mediated severing. We also demonstrated that CAP acts directly on F-actin and severs actin filaments at acidic, but not neutral, pH. At the neutral pH characteristic of cytosol in most mammalian cells, we demonstrated that neither CAP nor cofilin are capable of severing actin filaments. However, the combination of CAP and cofilin rapidly severed actin at all pH values across the physiological range. Therefore, our results reveal a new function for CAP in accelerating cofilin-mediated actin filament severing and provide a mechanism through which cells can maintain high actin turnover rates without having to alkalinize cytosol, which would affect many biochemical reactions beyond actin depolymerization.

  20. Erk regulation of actin capping and bundling by Eps8 promotes cortex tension and leader bleb-based migration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Logue, Jeremy S; Cartagena-Rivera, Alexander X; Baird, Michelle A; Davidson, Michael W; Chadwick, Richard S; Waterman, Clare M

    2015-07-11

    Within the confines of tissues, cancer cells can use blebs to migrate. Eps8 is an actin bundling and capping protein whose capping activity is inhibited by Erk, a key MAP kinase that is activated by oncogenic signaling. We tested the hypothesis that Eps8 acts as an Erk effector to modulate actin cortex mechanics and thereby mediate bleb-based migration of cancer cells. Cells confined in a non-adhesive environment migrate in the direction of a very large 'leader bleb.' Eps8 bundling activity promotes cortex tension and intracellular pressure to drive leader bleb formation. Eps8 capping and bundling activities act antagonistically to organize actin within leader blebs, and Erk mediates this effect. An Erk biosensor reveals concentrated kinase activity within leader blebs. Bleb contents are trapped by the narrow neck that separates the leader bleb from the cell body. Thus, Erk activity promotes actin bundling by Eps8 to enhance cortex tension and drive the bleb-based migration of cancer cells under non-adhesive confinement.

  1. Multiple actin binding domains of Ena/VASP proteins determine actin network stiffening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gentry, Brian S; van der Meulen, Stef; Noguera, Philippe; Alonso-Latorre, Baldomero; Plastino, Julie; Koenderink, Gijsje H

    2012-11-01

    Vasodilator-stimulated phosphoprotein (Ena/VASP) is an actin binding protein, important for actin dynamics in motile cells and developing organisms. Though VASP's main activity is the promotion of barbed end growth, it has an F-actin binding site and can form tetramers, and so could additionally play a role in actin crosslinking and bundling in the cell. To test this activity, we performed rheology of reconstituted actin networks in the presence of wild-type VASP or mutants lacking the ability to tetramerize or to bind G-actin and/or F-actin. We show that increasing amounts of wild-type VASP increase network stiffness up to a certain point, beyond which stiffness actually decreases with increasing VASP concentration. The maximum stiffness is 10-fold higher than for pure actin networks. Confocal microscopy shows that VASP forms clustered actin filament bundles, explaining the reduction in network elasticity at high VASP concentration. Removal of the tetramerization site results in significantly reduced bundling and bundle clustering, indicating that VASP's flexible tetrameric structure causes clustering. Removing either the F-actin or the G-actin binding site diminishes VASP's effect on elasticity, but does not eliminate it. Mutating the F-actin and G-actin binding site together, or mutating the F-actin binding site and saturating the G-actin binding site with monomeric actin, eliminates VASP's ability to increase network stiffness. We propose that, in the cell, VASP crosslinking confers only moderate increases in linear network elasticity, and unlike other crosslinkers, VASP's network stiffening activity may be tuned by the local concentration of monomeric actin.

  2. The unusual dynamics of parasite actin result from isodesmic polymerization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skillman, Kristen M; Ma, Christopher I; Fremont, Daved H; Diraviyam, Karthikeyan; Cooper, John A; Sept, David; Sibley, L David

    2013-01-01

    Previous reports have indicated that parasite actins are short and inherently unstable, despite being required for motility. Here we re-examine the polymerization properties of actin in Toxoplasma gondii, unexpectedly finding that it exhibits isodesmic polymerization in contrast to the conventional nucleation-elongation process of all previously studied actins from both eukaryotes and bacteria. Polymerization kinetics of actin in T. gondii lacks both a lag phase and critical concentration, normally characteristic of actins. Unique among actins, the kinetics of assembly can be fit with a single set of rate constants for all subunit interactions, without need for separate nucleation and elongation rates. This isodesmic model accurately predicts the assembly, disassembly and the size distribution of actin filaments in T. gondii in vitro, providing a mechanistic explanation for actin dynamics in vivo. Our findings expand the repertoire of mechanisms by which actin polymerization is governed and offer clues about the evolution of self-assembling, stabilized protein polymers.

  3. Crystal structure and structure-based mutagenesis of actin-specific ADP-ribosylating toxin CPILE-a as novel enterotoxin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toniti, Waraphan; Yoshida, Toru; Tsurumura, Toshiharu; Irikura, Daisuke; Monma, Chie; Kamata, Yoichi

    2017-01-01

    Unusual outbreaks of food poisoning in Japan were reported in which Clostridium perfringens was strongly suspected to be the cause based on epidemiological information and fingerprinting of isolates. The isolated strains lack the typical C. perfringens enterotoxin (CPE) but secrete a new enterotoxin consisting of two components: C. perfringens iota-like enterotoxin-a (CPILE-a), which acts as an enzymatic ADP-ribosyltransferase, and CPILE-b, a membrane binding component. Here we present the crystal structures of apo-CPILE-a, NAD+-CPILE-a and NADH-CPILE-a. Though CPILE-a structure has high similarity with known iota toxin-a (Ia) with NAD+, it possesses two extra-long protruding loops from G262-S269 and E402-K408 that are distinct from Ia. Based on the Ia–actin complex structure, we focused on actin-binding interface regions (I-V) including two protruding loops (PT) and examined how mutations in these regions affect the ADP-ribosylation activity of CPILE-a. Though some site-directed mutagenesis studies have already been conducted on the actin binding site of Ia, in the present study, mutagenesis studies were conducted against both α- and β/γ-actin in CPILE-a and Ia. Interestingly, CPILE-a ADP-ribosylates both α- and β/γ-actin, but its sensitivity towards β/γ-actin is 36% compared with α-actin. Our results contrast to that only C2-I ADP-ribosylates β/γ-actin. We also showed that PT-I and two convex-concave interactions in CPILE-a are important for actin binding. The current study is the first detailed analysis of site-directed mutagenesis in the actin binding region of Ia and CPILE-a against both α- and β/γ-actin. PMID:28199340

  4. ERK and phosphoinositide 3-kinase temporally coordinate different modes of actin-based motility during embryonic wound healing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Jingjing; Zhang, Siwei; Soto, Ximena; Woolner, Sarah; Amaya, Enrique

    2013-11-01

    Embryonic wound healing provides a perfect example of efficient recovery of tissue integrity and homeostasis, which is vital for survival. Tissue movement in embryonic wound healing requires two functionally distinct actin structures: a contractile actomyosin cable and actin protrusions at the leading edge. Here, we report that the discrete formation and function of these two structures is achieved by the temporal segregation of two intracellular upstream signals and distinct downstream targets. The sequential activation of ERK and phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) signalling divides Xenopus embryonic wound healing into two phases. In the first phase, activated ERK suppresses PI3K activity, and is responsible for the activation of Rho and myosin-2, which drives actomyosin cable formation and constriction. The second phase is dominated by restored PI3K signalling, which enhances Rac and Cdc42 activity, leading to the formation of actin protrusions that drive migration and zippering. These findings reveal a new mechanism for coordinating different modes of actin-based motility in a complex tissue setting, namely embryonic wound healing.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  6. A family of ROP proteins that suppresses actin dynamics, and is essential for polarized growth and cell adhesion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burkart, Graham M; Baskin, Tobias I; Bezanilla, Magdalena

    2015-07-15

    In plants, the ROP family of small GTPases has been implicated in the polarized growth of tip-growing cells, such as root hairs and pollen tubes; however, most of the data derive from overexpressing ROP genes or constitutively active and dominant-negative isoforms, whereas confirmation by using loss-of-function studies has generally been lacking. Here, in the model moss Physcomitrella patens, we study ROP signaling during tip growth by using a loss-of-function approach based on RNA interference (RNAi) to silence the entire moss ROP family. We find that plants with reduced expression of ROP genes, in addition to failing to initiate tip growth, have perturbed cell wall staining, reduced cell adhesion and have increased actin-filament dynamics. Although plants subjected to RNAi against the ROP family also have reduced microtubule dynamics, this reduction is not specific to loss of ROP genes, as it occurs when actin function is compromised chemically or genetically. Our data suggest that ROP proteins polarize the actin cytoskeleton by suppressing actin-filament dynamics, leading to an increase in actin filaments at the site of polarized secretion.

  7. Actinic reticuloid

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Marx, J.L.; Vale, M.; Dermer, P.; Ragaz, A.; Michaelides, P.; Gladstein, A.H.

    1982-09-01

    A 58-year-old man has his condition diagnosed as actinic reticuloid on the basis of clinical and histologic findings and phototesting data. He had clinical features resembling mycosis fungoides in light-exposed areas. Histologic findings disclosed a bandlike infiltrate with atypical mononuclear cells in the dermis and scattered atypical cells in the epidermis. Electron microscopy disclosed mononuclear cells with bizarre, convoluted nuclei, resembling cerebriform cells of Lutzner. Phototesting disclosed a diminished minimal erythemal threshold to UV-B and UV-A. Microscopic changes resembling actinic reticuloid were reproduced in this patient 24 and 72 hours after exposure to 15 minimal erythemal doses of UV-B.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  9. Fimbrin phosphorylation by metaphase Cdk1 regulates actin cable dynamics in budding yeast.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miao, Yansong; Han, Xuemei; Zheng, Liangzhen; Xie, Ying; Mu, Yuguang; Yates, John R; Drubin, David G

    2016-01-01

    Actin cables, composed of actin filament bundles nucleated by formins, mediate intracellular transport for cell polarity establishment and maintenance. We previously observed that metaphase cells preferentially promote actin cable assembly through cyclin-dependent kinase 1 (Cdk1) activity. However, the relevant metaphase Cdk1 targets were not known. Here we show that the highly conserved actin filament crosslinking protein fimbrin is a critical Cdk1 target for actin cable assembly regulation in budding yeast. Fimbrin is specifically phosphorylated on threonine 103 by the metaphase cyclin-Cdk1 complex, in vivo and in vitro. On the basis of conformational simulations, we suggest that this phosphorylation stabilizes fimbrin's N-terminal domain, and modulates actin filament binding to regulate actin cable assembly and stability in cells. Overall, this work identifies fimbrin as a key target for cell cycle regulation of actin cable assembly in budding yeast, and suggests an underlying mechanism.

  10. Prostaglandins temporally regulate cytoplasmic actin bundle formation during Drosophila oogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spracklen, Andrew J; Kelpsch, Daniel J; Chen, Xiang; Spracklen, Cassandra N; Tootle, Tina L

    2014-02-01

    Prostaglandins (PGs)--lipid signals produced downstream of cyclooxygenase (COX) enzymes--regulate actin dynamics in cell culture and platelets, but their roles during development are largely unknown. Here we define a new role for Pxt, the Drosophila COX-like enzyme, in regulating the actin cytoskeleton--temporal restriction of actin remodeling during oogenesis. PGs are required for actin filament bundle formation during stage 10B (S10B). In addition, loss of Pxt results in extensive early actin remodeling, including actin filaments and aggregates, within the posterior nurse cells of S9 follicles; wild-type follicles exhibit similar structures at a low frequency. Hu li tai shao (Hts-RC) and Villin (Quail), an actin bundler, localize to all early actin structures, whereas Enabled (Ena), an actin elongation factor, preferentially localizes to those in pxt mutants. Reduced Ena levels strongly suppress early actin remodeling in pxt mutants. Furthermore, loss of Pxt results in reduced Ena localization to the sites of bundle formation during S10B. Together these data lead to a model in which PGs temporally regulate actin remodeling during Drosophila oogenesis by controlling Ena localization/activity, such that in S9, PG signaling inhibits, whereas at S10B, it promotes Ena-dependent actin remodeling.

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

    KAUST Repository

    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.

  12. The Drosophila formin Fhos is a primary mediator of sarcomeric thin-filament array assembly

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shwartz, Arkadi; Dhanyasi, Nagaraju; Schejter, Eyal D; Shilo, Ben-Zion

    2016-01-01

    Actin-based thin filament arrays constitute a fundamental core component of muscle sarcomeres. We have used formation of the Drosophila indirect flight musculature for studying the assembly and maturation of thin-filament arrays in a skeletal muscle model system. Employing GFP-tagged actin monomer incorporation, we identify several distinct phases in the dynamic construction of thin-filament arrays. This sequence includes assembly of nascent arrays after an initial period of intensive microfilament synthesis, followed by array elongation, primarily from filament pointed-ends, radial growth of the arrays via recruitment of peripheral filaments and continuous barbed-end turnover. Using genetic approaches we have identified Fhos, the single Drosophila homolog of the FHOD sub-family of formins, as a primary and versatile mediator of IFM thin-filament organization. Localization of Fhos to the barbed-ends of the arrays, achieved via a novel N-terminal domain, appears to be a critical aspect of its sarcomeric roles. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.16540.001 PMID:27731794

  13. F- and G-actin homeostasis regulates mechanosensitive actin nucleation by formins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Higashida, Chiharu; Kiuchi, Tai; Akiba, Yushi; Mizuno, Hiroaki; Maruoka, Masahiro; Narumiya, Shuh; Mizuno, Kensaku; Watanabe, Naoki

    2013-04-01

    Physical force evokes rearrangement of the actin cytoskeleton. Signalling pathways such as tyrosine kinases, stretch-activated Ca(2+) channels and Rho GTPases are involved in force sensing. However, how signals are transduced to actin assembly remains obscure. Here we show mechanosensitive actin polymerization by formins (formin homology proteins). Cells overexpressing mDia1 increased the amount of F-actin on release of cell tension. Fluorescence single-molecule speckle microscopy revealed rapid induction of processive actin assembly by mDia1 on cell cortex deformation. mDia1 lacking the Rho-binding domain and other formins exhibited mechanosensitive actin nucleation, suggesting Rho-independent activation. Mechanosensitive actin nucleation by mDia1 required neither Ca(2+) nor kinase signalling. Overexpressing LIM kinase abrogated the induction of processive mDia1. Furthermore, s-FDAPplus (sequential fluorescence decay after photoactivation) analysis revealed a rapid actin monomer increase on cell cortex deformation. Our direct visualization of the molecular behaviour reveals a mechanosensitive actin filament regeneration mechanism in which G-actin released by actin remodelling plays a pivotal role.

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

    OpenAIRE

    G. G. Palancar; Shetter, R. E.; S. R. Hall; B. M. Toselli; S. Madronich

    2011-01-01

    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&de...

  15. Production and 3D printing processing of bio-based thermoplastic filament

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gkartzou Eleni

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available In this work, an extrusion-based 3D printing technique was employed for processing of biobased blends of Poly(Lactic Acid (PLA with low-cost kraft lignin. In Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF 3D printing process, objects are built in a layer-by-layer fashion by melting, extruding and selectively depositing thermoplastic fibers on a platform. These fibers are used as building blocks for more complex structures with defined microarchitecture, in an automated, cost-effective process, with minimum material waste. A sustainable material consisting of lignin biopolymer blended with poly(lactic acid was examined for its physical properties and for its melt processability during the FFF process. Samples with different PLA/lignin weight ratios were prepared and their mechanical (tensile testing, thermal (Differential Scanning Calorimetry analysis and morphological (optical and scanning electron microscopy, SEM properties were studied. The composition with optimum properties was selected for the production of 3D-printing filament. Three process parameters, which contribute to shear rate and stress imposed on the melt, were examined: extrusion temperature, printing speed and fiber’s width varied and their effect on extrudates’ morphology was evaluated. The mechanical properties of 3D printed specimens were assessed with tensile testing and SEM fractography.

  16. Actin dynamics and the elasticity of cytoskeletal networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  17. CAS-1, a C. elegans cyclase-associated protein, is required for sarcomeric actin assembly in striated muscle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nomura, Kazumi; Ono, Kanako; Ono, Shoichiro

    2012-09-01

    Assembly of contractile apparatuses in striated muscle requires precisely regulated reorganization of the actin cytoskeletal proteins into sarcomeric organization. Regulation of actin filament dynamics is one of the essential processes of myofibril assembly, but the mechanism of actin regulation in striated muscle is not clearly understood. Actin depolymerizing factor (ADF)/cofilin is a key enhancer of actin filament dynamics in striated muscle in both vertebrates and nematodes. Here, we report that CAS-1, a cyclase-associated protein in Caenorhabditis elegans, promotes ADF/cofilin-dependent actin filament turnover in vitro and is required for sarcomeric actin organization in striated muscle. CAS-1 is predominantly expressed in striated muscle from embryos to adults. In vitro, CAS-1 binds to actin monomers and enhances exchange of actin-bound ATP/ADP even in the presence of UNC-60B, a muscle-specific ADF/cofilin that inhibits the nucleotide exchange. As a result, CAS-1 and UNC-60B cooperatively enhance actin filament turnover. The two proteins also cooperate to shorten actin filaments. A cas-1 mutation is homozygous lethal with defects in sarcomeric actin organization. cas-1-mutant embryos and worms have aggregates of actin in muscle cells, and UNC-60B is mislocalized to the aggregates. These results provide genetic and biochemical evidence that cyclase-associated protein is a critical regulator of sarcomeric actin organization in striated muscle.

  18. Actin puts the squeeze on Drosophila glue secretion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merrifield, Christien J

    2016-02-01

    An actin filament coat promotes cargo expulsion from large exocytosing vesicles, but the mechanisms of coat formation and force generation have been poorly characterized. Elegant imaging studies of the Drosophila melanogaster salivary gland now reveal how actin and myosin are recruited, and show that myosin II forms a contractile 'cage' that facilitates exocytosis.

  19. The Role of Actin-Capping Protein and Src signalling in tissue growth and apoptosis during Drosophila wing development

    OpenAIRE

    Jezowska, Barbara Zofia

    2012-01-01

    Dissertation presented to obtain the Ph.D degree in Developmental Biology The actin cytoskeleton controls numerous cellular processes, including cell morphology and polarity, endocytosis, intracellular trafficking, contractility and cell division. Actin filament growth, stability and disassembly are controlled by a plethora of actin-binding proteins. Among them Capping Protein is a highly conserved αβ heterodimer, which binds the barbed ends of actin filaments, inhibiting addit...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  1. Osmotic Force-Controlled Microrheometry of Entangled Actin Networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uhde, Jorg; Feneberg, Wolfgang; Ter-Oganessian, N.; Sackmann, Erich; Boulbitch, Alexei

    2005-05-01

    In studying a magnetic bead’s creep response to force pulses in an entangled actin network we have found a novel regime where the bead motion obeys a power law x(t)˜t1/2 over two decades in time. It is flanked by a short-time regime with x(t)˜t3/4 and a viscous with x(t)˜t. In the intermediate regime the creep compliance depends on the actin concentration c as c-β with β≈1.1±0.3. We explain this behavior in terms of osmotic restoring force generated by the piling up of filaments in front of the moving bead. A model based on this concept predicts intermediate x(t)˜t1/2 and long-time regimes x(t)˜t in which the compliance varies as c-4/3, in agreement with experiment.

  2. Thin Filament Structure and the Steric Blocking Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehman, William

    2016-03-15

    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.

  3. The actin multigene family of Paramecium tetraurelia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wagner Erika

    2007-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background A Paramecium tetraurelia pilot genome project, the subsequent sequencing of a Megabase chromosome as well as the Paramecium genome project aimed at gaining insight into the genome of Paramecium. These cells display a most elaborate membrane trafficking system, with distinct, predictable pathways in which actin could participate. Previously we had localized actin in Paramecium; however, none of the efforts so far could proof the occurrence of actin in the cleavage furrow of a dividing cell, despite the fact that actin is unequivocally involved in cell division. This gave a first hint that Paramecium may possess actin isoforms with unusual characteristics. The genome project gave us the chance to search the whole Paramecium genome, and, thus, to identify and characterize probably all actin isoforms in Paramecium. Results The ciliated protozoan, P. tetraurelia, contains an actin multigene family with at least 30 members encoding actin, actin-related and actin-like proteins. They group into twelve subfamilies; a large subfamily with 10 genes, seven pairs and one trio with > 82% amino acid identity, as well as three single genes. The different subfamilies are very distinct from each other. In comparison to actins in other organisms, P. tetraurelia actins are highly divergent, with identities topping 80% and falling to 30%. We analyzed their structure on nucleotide level regarding the number and position of introns. On amino acid level, we scanned the sequences for the presence of actin consensus regions, for amino acids of the intermonomer interface in filaments, for residues contributing to ATP binding, and for known binding sites for myosin and actin-specific drugs. Several of those characteristics are lacking in several subfamilies. The divergence of P. tetraurelia actins and actin-related proteins between different P. tetraurelia subfamilies as well as with sequences of other organisms is well represented in a phylogenetic

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. G. Palancar

    2011-06-01

    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 (28° N–53° N, longitudes (45° W–140° W, altitudes (0.1–11.9 km, ozone columns (285–353 DU, and solar zenith angles (2°–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 was 1.01±0.04, i.e. in good agreement with observations. The agreement improved to 1.00±0.03 for the down-welling component under clear sky conditions. In the presence of clouds and depending on their position relative to the aircraft, the up-welling component was frequently enhanced (by as much as a factor of 8 relative to cloud-free values while the down-welling component showed both reductions and enhancements of up to a few tens of percent. Including all conditions, the ratio of the observed actinic flux to the cloud-free model value was 1.1±0.3 for the total, or separately 1.0±0.2 for the down-welling and 1.5±0.8 for the up-welling components. 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.

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

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    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.

  6. PI(3,5)P2 controls endosomal branched actin dynamics by regulating cortactin-actin interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hong, Nan Hyung; Qi, Aidong; Weaver, Alissa M

    2015-08-31

    Branched actin critically contributes to membrane trafficking by regulating membrane curvature, dynamics, fission, and transport. However, how actin dynamics are controlled at membranes is poorly understood. Here, we identify the branched actin regulator cortactin as a direct binding partner of phosphatidylinositol 3,5-bisphosphate (PI(3,5)P2) and demonstrate that their interaction promotes turnover of late endosomal actin. In vitro biochemical studies indicated that cortactin binds PI(3,5)P2 via its actin filament-binding region. Furthermore, PI(3,5)P2 competed with actin filaments for binding to cortactin, thereby antagonizing cortactin activity. These findings suggest that PI(3,5)P2 formation on endosomes may remove cortactin from endosome-associated branched actin. Indeed, inhibition of PI(3,5)P2 production led to cortactin accumulation and actin stabilization on Rab7(+) endosomes. Conversely, inhibition of Arp2/3 complex activity greatly reduced cortactin localization to late endosomes. Knockdown of cortactin reversed PI(3,5)P2-inhibitor-induced actin accumulation and stabilization on endosomes. These data suggest a model in which PI(3,5)P2 binding removes cortactin from late endosomal branched actin networks and thereby promotes net actin turnover.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    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)

  8. Bacterial intermediate filaments

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Charbon, Godefroid; Cabeen, M.; Jacobs-Wagner, C.

    2009-01-01

    Crescentin, which is the founding member of a rapidly growing family of bacterial cytoskeletal proteins, was previously proposed to resemble eukaryotic intermediate filament (IF) proteins based on structural prediction and in vitro polymerization properties. Here, we demonstrate that crescentin...

  9. 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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  10. 3D Printing Factors Important for the Fabrication of Polyvinylalcohol Filament-Based Tablets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tagami, Tatsuaki; Fukushige, Kaori; Ogawa, Emi; Hayashi, Naomi; Ozeki, Tetsuya

    2017-01-01

    Three-dimensional (3D) printers have been applied in many fields, including engineering and the medical sciences. In the pharmaceutical field, approval of the first 3D-printed tablet by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 2015 has attracted interest in the manufacture of tablets and drugs by 3D printing techniques as a means of delivering tailor-made drugs in the future. In current study, polyvinylalcohol (PVA)-based tablets were prepared using a fused-deposition-modeling-type 3D printer and the effect of 3D printing conditions on tablet production was investigated. Curcumin, a model drug/fluorescent marker, was loaded into PVA-filament. We found that several printing parameters, such as the rate of extruding PVA (flow rate), can affect the formability of the resulting PVA-tablets. The 3D-printing temperature is controlled by heating the print nozzle and was shown to affect the color of the tablets and their curcumin content. PVA-based infilled tablets with different densities were prepared by changing the fill density as a printing parameter. Tablets with lower fill density floated in an aqueous solution and their curcumin content tended to dissolve faster. These findings will be useful in developing drug-loaded PVA-based 3D objects and other polymer-based articles prepared using fused-deposition-modeling-type 3D printers.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  12. A two-segment model for thin filament architecture in skeletal muscle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gokhin, David S; Fowler, Velia M

    2013-02-01

    Correct specification of myofilament length is essential for efficient skeletal muscle contraction. The length of thin actin filaments can be explained by a novel 'two-segment' model, wherein the thin filaments consist of two concatenated segments, which are of either constant or variable length. This is in contrast to the classic 'nebulin ruler' model, which postulates that thin filaments are uniform structures, the lengths of which are dictated by nebulin. The two-segment model implicates position-specific microregulation of actin dynamics as a general principle underlying actin filament length and stability.

  13. Formins: Bringing new insights to the organization of actin cytoskeleton

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    GUO Chunqing; REN Haiyun

    2006-01-01

    The actin cytoskeleton is an important component of eukaryotic cell cytoskeleton and is temporally and spatially controlled by a series of actin binding proteins (ABPs). Among ABPs, formin family proteins have attracted much attention as they can nucleate unbranched actin filament from the profilin bound actin pool in vivo. In recent years, a number of formin family members from different organisms have been reported, and their characteristics are known more clearly, although some questions are still to be clarified. Here, we summarize the structures, functions and nucleation mechanisms of different formin family proteins, intending to compare them and give some new clues to the study of formins.

  14. Drosophila Fascin is a novel downstream target of prostaglandin signaling during actin remodeling

    OpenAIRE

    Groen, Christopher M.; Spracklen, Andrew J.; Fagan, Tiffany N.; Tootle, Tina L.

    2012-01-01

    Although prostaglandins (PGs)—lipid signals produced downstream of cyclooxygenase (COX) enzymes—regulate actin cytoskeletal dynamics, their mechanisms of action are unknown. We previously established Drosophila oogenesis, in particular nurse cell dumping, as a new model to determine how PGs regulate actin remodeling. PGs, and thus the Drosophila COX-like enzyme Pxt, are required for both the parallel actin filament bundle formation and the cortical actin strengthening required for dumping. He...

  15. PDGF induces reorganization of vimentin filaments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valgeirsdóttir, S; Claesson-Welsh, L; Bongcam-Rudloff, E; Hellman, U; Westermark, B; Heldin, C H

    1998-07-30

    In this study we demonstrate that stimulation with platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) leads to a marked reorganization of the vimentin filaments in porcine aortic endothelial (PAE) cells ectopically expressing the PDGF beta-receptor. Within 20 minutes after stimulation, the well-spread fine fibrillar vimentin was reorganized as the filaments aggregated into a dense coil around the nucleus. The solubility of vimentin upon Nonidet-P40-extraction of cells decreased considerably after PDGF stimulation, indicating that PDGF caused a redistribution of vimentin to a less soluble compartment. In addition, an increased tyrosine phosphorylation of vimentin was observed. The redistribution of vimentin was not a direct consequence of its tyrosine phosphorylation, since treatment of cells with an inhibitor for the cytoplasmic tyrosine kinase Src, attenuated phosphorylation but not redistribution of vimentin. These changes in the distribution of vimentin occurred in conjunction with reorganization of actin filaments. In PAE cells expressing a Y740/751F mutant receptor that is unable to bind and activate phosphatidylinositol 3'-kinase (PI3-kinase), the distribution of vimentin was virtually unaffected by PDGF stimulation. Thus, PI3-kinase is important for vimentin reorganization, in addition to its previously demonstrated role in actin reorganization. The small GTPase Rac has previously been shown to be involved downstream of PI3-kinase in the reorganization of actin filaments. In PAE cells overexpressing dominant negative Rac1 (N17Rac1), no change in the fine fibrillar vimentin network was seen after PDGF-BB stimulation, whereas in PAE cells overexpressing constitutively active Rac1 (V12Rac1), there was a dramatic change in vimentin filament organization independent of PDGF stimulation. These data indicate that PDGF causes a reorganization of microfilaments as well as intermediate filaments in its target cells and suggest an important role for Rac downstream of PI3-kinase in

  16. Actin dynamics shape microglia effector functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uhlemann, Ria; Gertz, Karen; Boehmerle, Wolfgang; Schwarz, Tobias; Nolte, Christiane; Freyer, Dorette; Kettenmann, Helmut; Endres, Matthias; Kronenberg, Golo

    2016-06-01

    Impaired actin filament dynamics have been associated with cellular senescence. Microglia, the resident immune cells of the brain, are emerging as a central pathophysiological player in neurodegeneration. Microglia activation, which ranges on a continuum between classical and alternative, may be of critical importance to brain disease. Using genetic and pharmacological manipulations, we studied the effects of alterations in actin dynamics on microglia effector functions. Disruption of actin dynamics did not affect transcription of genes involved in the LPS-triggered classical inflammatory response. By contrast, in consequence of impaired nuclear translocation of phospho-STAT6, genes involved in IL-4 induced alternative activation were strongly downregulated. Functionally, impaired actin dynamics resulted in reduced NO secretion and reduced release of TNFalpha and IL-6 from LPS-stimulated microglia and of IGF-1 from IL-4 stimulated microglia. However, pathological stabilization of the actin cytoskeleton increased LPS-induced release of IL-1beta and IL-18, which belong to an unconventional secretory pathway. Reduced NO release was associated with decreased cytoplasmic iNOS protein expression and decreased intracellular arginine uptake. Furthermore, disruption of actin dynamics resulted in reduced microglia migration, proliferation and phagocytosis. Finally, baseline and ATP-induced [Ca(2+)]int levels were significantly increased in microglia lacking gelsolin, a key actin-severing protein. Together, the dynamic state of the actin cytoskeleton profoundly and distinctly affects microglia behaviours. Disruption of actin dynamics attenuates M2 polarization by inhibiting transcription of alternative activation genes. In classical activation, the role of actin remodelling is complex, does not relate to gene transcription and shows a major divergence between cytokines following conventional and unconventional secretion.

  17. Crystal structure of an archaeal actin homolog.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roeben, Annette; Kofler, Christine; Nagy, István; Nickell, Stephan; Hartl, F Ulrich; Bracher, Andreas

    2006-04-21

    Prokaryotic homologs of the eukaryotic structural protein actin, such as MreB and ParM, have been implicated in determination of bacterial cell shape, and in the segregation of genomic and plasmid DNA. In contrast to these bacterial actin homologs, little is known about the archaeal counterparts. As a first step, we expressed a predicted actin homolog of the thermophilic archaeon Thermoplasma acidophilum, Ta0583, and determined its crystal structure at 2.1A resolution. Ta0583 is expressed as a soluble protein in T.acidophilum and is an active ATPase at physiological temperature. In vitro, Ta0583 forms sheets with spacings resembling the crystal lattice, indicating an inherent propensity to form filamentous structures. The fold of Ta0583 contains the core structure of actin and clearly belongs to the actin/Hsp70 superfamily of ATPases. Ta0583 is approximately equidistant from actin and MreB on the structural level, and combines features from both eubacterial actin homologs, MreB and ParM. The structure of Ta0583 co-crystallized with ADP indicates that the nucleotide binds at the interface between the subdomains of Ta0583 in a manner similar to that of actin. However, the conformation of the nucleotide observed in complex with Ta0583 clearly differs from that in complex with actin, but closely resembles the conformation of ParM-bound nucleotide. On the basis of sequence and structural homology, we suggest that Ta0583 derives from a ParM-like actin homolog that was once encoded by a plasmid and was transferred into a common ancestor of Thermoplasma and Ferroplasma. Intriguingly, both genera are characterized by the lack of a cell wall, and therefore Ta0583 could have a function in cellular organization.

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

    CERN Document Server

    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...

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

    CERN Document Server

    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...

  20. Induction of ERK-kinase signalling triggers morphotype-specific killing of Candida albicans filaments by human neutrophils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wozniok, Iwona; Hornbach, Anke; Schmitt, Corinna; Frosch, Matthias; Einsele, Hermann; Hube, Bernhard; Löffler, Jürgen; Kurzai, Oliver

    2008-03-01

    Candida albicans is among the most important fungal pathogens in humans. Morphological plasticity has been linked to its pathogenic potential as filamentous forms are associated with tissue invasion and infection. Here we show that human neutrophils discriminate between yeasts and filaments of C. albicans. Whereas filaments induced targeted motility, resulting in the establishment of close contact between neutrophils and fungal cells, yeast forms were largely ignored during coincubation. In transwell assays, C. albicans filaments induced significantly higher migratory activity in neutrophils than yeasts. Neutrophil motility based on actin rearrangement was essential for killing of C. albicans filaments but not involved in killing of yeast forms. Using inhibitors for MAP-kinase cascades, it was shown that recognition of C. albicans filaments by neutrophils is mediated via the MEK/ERK cascade and independent of JNK or p38 activation. Inhibition of the ERK signalling pathway abolished neutrophil migration induced by C. albicans filaments and selectively impaired the ability to kill this morphotype. These data show that invasive filamentous forms of C. albicans trigger a morphotype-specific activation of neutrophils, which is strongly dependent on neutrophil motility. Therefore, human neutrophils are capable of sensing C. albicans invasion and initiating an appropriate early immune response.

  1. X-ray microscopy using reflection targets based on SEM with tungsten filament

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Junbiao; Ma, Yutian; Zhao, Weixia; Niu, Geng; Chu, Mingzhang; Yin, Bohua; Han, Li; Liu, Baodong

    2016-10-01

    X-ray MicroandNano imaging is developed based on the conventional x-ray tomography, it can not only provide nondestructive testing with higher resolution measurement, but also be used to examine the material or the structure with low atomic number and low density. The source with micro-focal spot size is one of the key components of x-ray MicroandNano imaging. The focused electron beam from SEM bombarding the metal target can generate x-ray with ultra-small size. It is convenient to set up x-ray microscopy based on SEM for laboratory use. This paper describes a new x-ray microscopy using reflection targets based on FEI Quanta600 SEM with tungsten filament. The flat panel detector is placed outside of the vacuum chamber with 300μm thickness Be-window to isolate vacuum from the air. A stage with 3 DOFs is added to adjust the positions of the target, the SEM's sample stage is used to move sample. And the shape of target is designed as cone with 60° half cone angle to get the maximum x-ray dosage. The attenuation coefficient of Bewindow for x-ray is about 25%. Finally, the line pair card is used to evaluate the resolution and the result shows that the resolution of the system can receive less than 750nm, when the acceleration voltage is 30keV, the beam current is 160nA, the SEM working distance is 5mm and the acquisition time of the detector is 60s.

  2. Drosophila Dachsous and Fat polarize actin-based protrusions over a restricted domain of the embryonic denticle field.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawlor, Kynan T; Ly, Daniel C; DiNardo, Stephen

    2013-11-15

    Atypical cadherins Dachsous (Ds) and Fat coordinate the establishment of planar polarity, essential for the patterning of complex tissues and organs. The precise mechanisms by which this system acts, particularly in cases where Ds and Fat act independently of the 'core' frizzled system, are still the subject of investigation. Examining the deployment of the Ds-Fat system in different tissues of the model organism Drosophila, has provided insights into the general mechanisms by which polarity is established and propagated to coordinate outcomes across a field of cells. The Drosophila embryonic epidermis provides a simple model epithelia where the establishment of polarity can be observed from start to finish, and in the absence of proliferation, over a fixed number of cells. Using the asymmetric placement of f-actin during denticle assembly as a read-out of polarity, we examine the requirement for Ds and Fat in establishing polarity across the denticle field. Comparing detailed phenotypic analysis with steady state protein enrichment revealed a spatially restricted requirement for the Ds-Fat system within the posterior denticle field. Ectopic Ds signaling provides evidence for a model whereby Ds acts to asymmetrically enrich Fat in a neighboring cell, in turn polarizing the cell to specify the position of the actin-based protrusions at the cell cortex.

  3. Quantifying protein diffusion and capture on filaments

    CERN Document Server

    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.

  4. Regulation of Actin Dynamics in Pollen Tubes: Control of Actin Polymer Level

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Naizhi Chen; Xiaolu Qu; Youjun Wu; Shanjin Huang

    2009-01-01

    Actin cytoskeleton undergoes rapid reorganization In response to internal and external cues. How the dynamics of actin cytoskeleton are regulated, and how its dynamics relate to its function are fundamental questions inplant cell biology. The pollen tube is a well characterized actin-based call morphogenesis in plants. One of the striking features of actin cytoskeleton characterized in the pollen tube is its surprisingly low level of actin polymer. This special phenomenon might relate to the function of actin cytoskeleton in pollen tubes. Understanding the molecular mechanism underlying this special phenomenon requires careful analysis of actin-binding proteins that modulate actin dynamics directly. Recent biochemical and biophysical analyses of several highly conserved plant actin-binding proteins reveal unusual and un-expected properties, which emphasizes the importance of carefully analyzing their action mechanism and cellular activity. In this review, we highlight an actin monomer sequestering protein, a barbed end capping protein and an F-actin severing and dynamizing protein in plant. We propose that these proteins function in harmony to regulate actin dynamics and maintain the low level of actin polymer in pollen tubes.

  5. Identification of sucrose synthase as an actin-binding protein

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winter, H.; Huber, J. L.; Huber, S. C.; Davies, E. (Principal Investigator)

    1998-01-01

    Several lines of evidence indicate that sucrose synthase (SuSy) binds both G- and F-actin: (i) presence of SuSy in the Triton X-100-insoluble fraction of microsomal membranes (i.e. crude cytoskeleton fraction); (ii) co-immunoprecipitation of actin with anti-SuSy monoclonal antibodies; (iii) association of SuSy with in situ phalloidin-stabilized F-actin filaments; and (iv) direct binding to F-actin, polymerized in vitro. Aldolase, well known to interact with F-actin, interfered with binding of SuSy, suggesting that a common or overlapping binding site may be involved. We postulate that some of the soluble SuSy in the cytosol may be associated with the actin cytoskeleton in vivo.

  6. Influence of RhoA-Rock pathway inhibitor on the filamentous actin of hypoxia human pulmonary microvascular endothelial cells%RhoA-Rock信号通路抑制剂对缺氧人肺微血管内皮细胞丝状肌动蛋白细胞骨架的影响

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    张费通; 崔其亮; 莫镜

    2012-01-01

    Objective To explore the control factor of pulmonary microvascular endothelial cells in pulmonary hemorrhage with the RhoA-Rock pathway inhibitors.Methods Human pulmonary rnicrovascular endothelial cells were conventionally cultured,and were divided into four groups:control group,inhibitor group,hypoxia group and hypoxia group with inhibitor.As different fluorescein lsothiocyanate-phalloidin and filamentous actin (F-actin) in cytoplasm combined,it issued red fluorescence.We observed the dynamic changes of F-actin by laser scanning confocal microscope in hypoxia human pulmonary microvascular endothelial cells and recorded the value of fluorescence.Results The mean fluorescence intensity of F-actin of hypoxia group in 1 h,12h and 24 h was (64.3 ±5.5)%,(60.3±4.2)%,and (47.8 ±4.6)% as compared with the control group;the ratio of hypoxia group with inhibitor was (66.2 ±3.2)%,(67.1 ±6.2)%,and (72.5 ± 6.1 ) % as compared with the control group.The mean fluorescence intensity of F-actin decreased obviously after 1 h hypoxia treated to cells,decreasing to (64.3 ± 5.5 ) % of the control group (P <0.05 ) ;to 24 h,decreasing to (47.8 ±4.6) % of the control group(P <0.05).The mean fluorescence intensity of F-actin decreased to (66.2 ± 3.2) % of the control group after 1 h hypoxia treated in inhibitor group,which was more than 1 h in the hypoxic group.F-actin decreased obviously to (72.5 ± 6.1 ) % of the control group after 24 h hypoxia treated in inhibitor group.There was significant difference comparing with the hypoxia group after 24 h hypoxia(P <0.05).The mean fluorescence intensity of F-actin of inhibitor group without anoxic was invariant comparing with the control group(P >0.05).Cortex-like structure disappeared and the stress fibers arranged disorderly after hypoxia.Actin depolymedzated and broke gradually with the extension of hypoxia time.If to be hypoxic after pretreated with RhoA-Rock pathway inhibitor,cortex-like structure by

  7. A neural network gravitational arc finder based on the Mediatrix filamentation method

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-01-01

    Context. 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. Aims: In this work we introduce a new arc finder based on pattern recognition, which uses a set of morphological measurements that are derived from the Mediatrix filamentation method 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 four Hubble Space Telescope (HST) images of strong lensing systems. Methods: The simulated arcs use simple prescriptions for the lens and the source, while mimicking HST observational conditions. We also consider a sample of objects from HST images with no arcs in the training of the ANN classification. We use the training and validation process to determine a suitable set of ANN configurations, including the combination of inputs from the Mediatrix method, so as to maximize the completeness while keeping the false positives low. Results: In the simulations the method was able to achieve a completeness of about 90% with respect to the arcs that are input into the ANN after a preselection. However, this completeness drops to 70% on the HST images. The false detections are on the order of 3% of the objects detected in these images. Conclusions: The combination of Mediatrix measurements with an ANN is a promising tool for the pattern-recognition phase of arc finding. More realistic simulations and a larger set of real systems are needed for a better training and assessment of the efficiency of the method.

  8. Cytoskeletal remodeling in differentiated vascular smooth muscle is actin isoform dependent and stimulus dependent.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Hak Rim; Gallant, Cynthia; Leavis, Paul C; Gunst, Susan J; Morgan, Kathleen G

    2008-09-01

    Dynamic remodeling of the actin cytoskeleton plays an essential role in the migration and proliferation of vascular smooth muscle cells. It has been suggested that actin remodeling may also play an important functional role in nonmigrating, nonproliferating differentiated vascular smooth muscle (dVSM). In the present study, we show that contractile agonists increase the net polymerization of actin in dVSM, as measured by the differential ultracentrifugation of vascular smooth muscle tissue and the costaining of single freshly dissociated cells with fluorescent probes specific for globular and filamentous actin. Furthermore, induced alterations of the actin polymerization state, as well as actin decoy peptides, inhibit contractility in a stimulus-dependent manner. Latrunculin pretreatment or actin decoy peptides significantly inhibit contractility induced by a phorbol ester or an alpha-agonist, but these procedures have no effect on contractions induced by KCl. Aorta dVSM expresses alpha-smooth muscle actin, beta-actin, nonmuscle gamma-actin, and smooth muscle gamma-actin. The incorporation of isoform-specific cell-permeant synthetic actin decoy peptides, as well as isoform-specific probing of cell fractions and two-dimensional gels, demonstrates that actin remodeling during alpha-agonist contractions involves the remodeling of primarily gamma-actin and, to a lesser extent, beta-actin. Taken together, these results show that net isoform- and agonist-dependent increases in actin polymerization regulate vascular contractility.

  9. Plant villin, lily P-135-ABP, possesses G-actin binding activity and accelerates the polymerization and depolymerization of actin in a Ca2+-sensitive manner.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yokota, Etsuo; Tominaga, Motoki; Mabuchi, Issei; Tsuji, Yasunori; Staiger, Christopher J; Oiwa, Kazuhiro; Shimmen, Teruo

    2005-10-01

    From germinating pollen of lily, two types of villins, P-115-ABP and P-135-ABP, have been identified biochemically. Ca(2+)-CaM-dependent actin-filament binding and bundling activities have been demonstrated for both villins previously. Here, we examined the effects of lily villins on the polymerization and depolymerization of actin. P-115-ABP and P-135-ABP present in a crude protein extract prepared from germinating pollen bound to a DNase I affinity column in a Ca(2+)-dependent manner. Purified P-135-ABP reduced the lag period that precedes actin filament polymerization from monomers in the presence of either Ca(2+) or Ca(2+)-CaM. These results indicated that P-135-ABP can form a complex with G-actin in the presence of Ca(2+) and this complex acts as a nucleus for polymerization of actin filaments. However, the nucleation activity of P-135-ABP is probably not relevant in vivo because the assembly of G-actin saturated with profilin, a situation that mimics conditions found in pollen, was not accelerated in the presence of P-135-ABP. P-135-ABP also enhanced the depolymerization of actin filaments during dilution-mediated disassembly. Growth from filament barbed ends in the presence of Ca(2+)-CaM was also prevented, consistent with filament capping activity. These results suggested that lily villin is involved not only in the arrangement of actin filaments into bundles in the basal and shank region of the pollen tube, but also in regulating and modulating actin dynamics through its capping and depolymerization (or fragmentation) activities in the apical region of the pollen tube, where there is a relatively high concentration of Ca(2+).

  10. Autonomous and in trans functions for the two halves of Srv2/CAP in promoting actin turnover.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaudhry, Faisal; Jansen, Silvia; Little, Kristin; Suarez, Cristian; Boujemaa-Paterski, Rajaa; Blanchoin, Laurent; Goode, Bruce L

    2014-06-01

    Recent evidence has suggested that Srv2/CAP (cyclase-associated protein) has two distinct functional roles in regulating actin turnover, with its N-terminus enhancing cofilin-mediated severing of actin filaments and its C-terminus catalyzing actin monomer recycling. However, it has remained unclear to what degree these two activities are coordinated by being linked in one molecule, or whether they can function autonomously. To address this, we physically divided the protein into two separate halves, N-Srv2 and C-Srv2, and asked whether they are able to function in trans both in living cells and in reconstituted assays for F-actin turnover and actin-based motility. Remarkably, in F-actin turnover assays the stimulatory effects of N-Srv2 and C-Srv2 functioning in trans were quantitatively similar to those of intact full-length Srv2. Further, in bead motility assays and in vivo, the fragments again functioned in trans, although not with the full effectiveness of intact Srv2. From these data, we conclude that the functions of the two halves of Srv2/CAP are largely autonomous, although their linkage improves coordination of the two functions in specific settings, possibly explaining why the linkage is conserved across distant plant, animal, and fungal species.

  11. Structural analysis of the transitional state of Arp2/3 complex activation by two actin-bound WCAs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boczkowska, Malgorzata; Rebowski, Grzegorz; Kast, David J; Dominguez, Roberto

    2014-01-01

    Actin filament nucleation and branching by Arp2/3 complex is activated by nucleation-promoting factors (NPFs), whose C-terminal WCA region contains binding sites for actin (W) and Arp2/3 complex (CA). It is debated whether one or two NPFs are required for activation. Here we present evidence in support of the two-NPF model and show that actin plays a crucial role in the interactions of two mammalian NPFs, N-WASP and WAVE2, with Arp2/3 complex. Competition between actin-WCA and glia maturation factor (GMF) for binding to Arp2/3 complex suggests that during activation the first actin monomer binds at the barbed end of Arp2. Based on distance constraints obtained by time-resolved fluorescence resonance energy transfer, we define the relative position of the two actin-WCAs on Arp2/3 complex and propose an atomic model of the 11-subunit transitional complex.

  12. Two distinct mechanisms for actin capping protein regulation--steric and allosteric inhibition.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shuichi Takeda

    Full Text Available The actin capping protein (CP tightly binds to the barbed end of actin filaments, thus playing a key role in actin-based lamellipodial dynamics. V-1 and CARMIL proteins directly bind to CP and inhibit the filament capping activity of CP. V-1 completely inhibits CP from interacting with the barbed end, whereas CARMIL proteins act on the barbed end-bound CP and facilitate its dissociation from the filament (called uncapping activity. Previous studies have revealed the striking functional differences between the two regulators. However, the molecular mechanisms describing how these proteins inhibit CP remains poorly understood. Here we present the crystal structures of CP complexed with V-1 and with peptides derived from the CP-binding motif of CARMIL proteins (CARMIL, CD2AP, and CKIP-1. V-1 directly interacts with the primary actin binding surface of CP, the C-terminal region of the alpha-subunit. Unexpectedly, the structures clearly revealed the conformational flexibility of CP, which can be attributed to a twisting movement between the two domains. CARMIL peptides in an extended conformation interact simultaneously with the two CP domains. In contrast to V-1, the peptides do not directly compete with the barbed end for the binding surface on CP. Biochemical assays revealed that the peptides suppress the interaction between CP and V-1, despite the two inhibitors not competing for the same binding site on CP. Furthermore, a computational analysis using the elastic network model indicates that the interaction of the peptides alters the intrinsic fluctuations of CP. Our results demonstrate that V-1 completely sequesters CP from the barbed end by simple steric hindrance. By contrast, CARMIL proteins allosterically inhibit CP, which appears to be a prerequisite for the uncapping activity. Our data suggest that CARMIL proteins down-regulate CP by affecting its conformational dynamics. This conceptually new mechanism of CP inhibition provides a

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  16. Unique properties of eukaryote-type actin and profilin horizontally transferred to cyanobacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guljamow, Arthur; Delissen, Friedmar; Baumann, Otto; Thünemann, Andreas F; Dittmann, Elke

    2012-01-01

    A eukaryote-type actin and its binding protein profilin encoded on a genomic island in the cyanobacterium Microcystis aeruginosa PCC 7806 co-localize to form a hollow, spherical enclosure occupying a considerable intracellular space as shown by in vivo fluorescence microscopy. Biochemical and biophysical characterization reveals key differences between these proteins and their eukaryotic homologs. Small-angle X-ray scattering shows that the actin assembles into elongated, filamentous polymers which can be visualized microscopically with fluorescent phalloidin. Whereas rabbit actin forms thin cylindrical filaments about 100 µm in length, cyanobacterial actin polymers resemble a ribbon, arrest polymerization at 5-10 µm and tend to form irregular multi-strand assemblies. While eukaryotic profilin is a specific actin monomer binding protein, cyanobacterial profilin shows the unprecedented property of decorating actin filaments. Electron micrographs show that cyanobacterial profilin stimulates actin filament bundling and stabilizes their lateral alignment into heteropolymeric sheets from which the observed hollow enclosure may be formed. We hypothesize that adaptation to the confined space of a bacterial cell devoid of binding proteins usually regulating actin polymerization in eukaryotes has driven the co-evolution of cyanobacterial actin and profilin, giving rise to an intracellular entity.

  17. Unique properties of eukaryote-type actin and profilin horizontally transferred to cyanobacteria.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arthur Guljamow

    Full Text Available A eukaryote-type actin and its binding protein profilin encoded on a genomic island in the cyanobacterium Microcystis aeruginosa PCC 7806 co-localize to form a hollow, spherical enclosure occupying a considerable intracellular space as shown by in vivo fluorescence microscopy. Biochemical and biophysical characterization reveals key differences between these proteins and their eukaryotic homologs. Small-angle X-ray scattering shows that the actin assembles into elongated, filamentous polymers which can be visualized microscopically with fluorescent phalloidin. Whereas rabbit actin forms thin cylindrical filaments about 100 µm in length, cyanobacterial actin polymers resemble a ribbon, arrest polymerization at 5-10 µm and tend to form irregular multi-strand assemblies. While eukaryotic profilin is a specific actin monomer binding protein, cyanobacterial profilin shows the unprecedented property of decorating actin filaments. Electron micrographs show that cyanobacterial profilin stimulates actin filament bundling and stabilizes their lateral alignment into heteropolymeric sheets from which the observed hollow enclosure may be formed. We hypothesize that adaptation to the confined space of a bacterial cell devoid of binding proteins usually regulating actin polymerization in eukaryotes has driven the co-evolution of cyanobacterial actin and profilin, giving rise to an intracellular entity.

  18. Fertilization in Torenia fournieri: actin organization and nuclear behavior in the central cell and primary endosperm

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2002-01-01

    Studies of the living embryo sacs of Torenia fournieri reveal that the actin cytoskeleton undergoes dramatic changes that correlate with nuclear migration within the central cell and the primary endosperm. Before pollination, actin filaments appear as short bundles randomly distributed in the cortex of the central cell. Two days after anthesis, they become organized into a distinct actin network. At this stage the secondary nucleus, which is located in the central region of the central cell, possesses an associated array of short actin filaments. Soon after pollination, the actin filaments become fragmented in the micropylar end and the secondary nucleus is located next to the egg apparatus. After fertilization, the primary endosperm nucleus moves away from the egg cell and actin filaments reorganize into a prominent network in the cytoplasm of the primary endosperm. Disruption of the actin cytoskeleton with latrunculin A and cytochalasin B indicates that actin is involved in the migration of the nucleus in the central cell. Our data also suggest that the dynamics of actin cytoskeleton may be responsible for the reorganization of the central cell and primary endosperm cytoplasm during fertilization.

  19. Cell elasticity is regulated by the tropomyosin isoform composition of the actin cytoskeleton.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jalilian, Iman; Heu, Celine; Cheng, Hong; Freittag, Hannah; Desouza, Melissa; Stehn, Justine R; Bryce, Nicole S; Whan, Renee M; Hardeman, Edna C; Fath, Thomas; Schevzov, Galina; Gunning, Peter W

    2015-01-01

    The actin cytoskeleton is the primary polymer system within cells responsible for regulating cellular stiffness. While various actin binding proteins regulate the organization and dynamics of the actin cytoskeleton, the proteins responsible for regulating the mechanical properties of cells are still not fully understood. In the present study, we have addressed the significance of the actin associated protein, tropomyosin (Tpm), in influencing the mechanical properties of cells. Tpms belong to a multi-gene family that form a co-polymer with actin filaments and differentially regulate actin filament stability, function and organization. Tpm isoform expression is highly regulated and together with the ability to sort to specific intracellular sites, result in the generation of distinct Tpm isoform-containing actin filament populations. Nanomechanical measurements conducted with an Atomic Force Microscope using indentation in Peak Force Tapping in indentation/ramping mode, demonstrated that Tpm impacts on cell stiffness and the observed effect occurred in a Tpm isoform-specific manner. Quantitative analysis of the cellular filamentous actin (F-actin) pool conducted both biochemically and with the use of a linear detection algorithm to evaluate actin structures revealed that an altered F-actin pool does not absolutely predict changes in cell stiffness. Inhibition of non-muscle myosin II revealed that intracellular tension generated by myosin II is required for the observed increase in cell stiffness. Lastly, we show that the observed increase in cell stiffness is partially recapitulated in vivo as detected in epididymal fat pads isolated from a Tpm3.1 transgenic mouse line. Together these data are consistent with a role for Tpm in regulating cell stiffness via the generation of specific populations of Tpm isoform-containing actin filaments.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holmes, W. R.; Carlsson, A. E.; Edelstein-Keshet, L.

    2012-08-01

    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.

  1. Galaxy pairs align with galactic filaments

    CERN Document Server

    Tempel, Elmo

    2015-01-01

    Context. Gravitational collapse theory and numerical simulations suggest that the velocity field within large-scale galaxy filaments is dominated by motions along the filaments. Aims. Our aim is to check whether observational data reveal any preferred orientation of galaxy pairs with respect to the underlying filaments as a result of the expectedly anisotropic velocity field. Methods. We use galaxy pairs and galaxy filaments identified from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey data. For filament extraction, we use the Bisous model that is based the marked point process technique. During the filament detection, we use the centre point of each pair instead of the positions of galaxies to avoid a built-in influence of pair orientation on the filament construction. For pairs lying within filaments (3012 cases), we calculate the angle between the line connecting galaxies of each pair and their host filament. To avoid redshift-space distortions, the angle is measured in the plain of the sky. Results. The alignment analysis...

  2. Characterization of HI Filaments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lubar, Emily; Verschuur, Gerrit L.

    2017-01-01

    We characterized the properties of dramatic interstellar HI filaments to learn more about the dynamics and structure of such features. Using Gauss fitting software, we searched the Effelsburg-Bonn HI Survey data for indications of a simple twisting (toroidal) motion across these filaments. Instead, we found that the structure was more complicated than expected. Apparent angular widths of several filaments were measured using the Galactic Arecibo L-band Feed Array HI (GALFA-HI), Bonn, and Leident/Argentine/Bonn (LAB) surveys. Based on filament widths and other parameters, we conclude that magnetism is the dominant force opposing internal motion and maintaining the structure of these filaments. The apparent width as a function of beam width closely follows a relationship reported in 1993 for HI features in general. They tend to subtend an angle two times the beam width, suggesting that the features remain unresolved.The Arecibo Observatory is operated by SRI International under a cooperative agreement with the National Science Foundation (AST-1100968), and in alliance with Ana G. Méndez-Universidad Metropolitana, and the Universities Space Research Association. The Arecibo Observatory REU is funded under grant AST-1559849 to Universidad Metropolitana.

  3. Viscoelastic properties of actin-coated membranes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helfer, E.; Harlepp, S.; Bourdieu, L.; Robert, J.; Mackintosh, F. C.; Chatenay, D.

    2001-02-01

    In living cells, cytoskeletal filaments interact with the plasma membrane to form structures that play a key role in cell shape and mechanical properties. To study the interaction between these basic components, we designed an in vitro self-assembled network of actin filaments attached to the outer surface of giant unilamellar vesicles. Optical tweezers and single-particle tracking experiments are used to study the rich dynamics of these actin-coated membranes (ACM). We show that microrheology studies can be carried out on such an individual microscopic object. The principle of the experiment consists in measuring the thermally excited position fluctuations of a probe bead attached biochemically to the membrane. We propose a model that relates the power spectrum of these thermal fluctuations to the viscoelastic properties of the membrane. The presence of the actin network modifies strongly the membrane dynamics with respect to a fluid, lipid bilayer one. It induces first a finite (ω=0) two-dimensional (2D) shear modulus G02D~0.5 to 5 μN/m in the membrane plane. Moreover, the frequency dependence at high frequency of the shear modulus [G'2D(f )~f0.85+/-0.07] and of the bending modulus (κACM(f)~f0.55+/-0.21) demonstrate the viscoelastic behavior of the composite membrane. These results are consistent with a common exponent of 0.75 for both moduli as expected from our model and from prior measurements on actin solutions.

  4. A novel three-filament model of force generation in eccentric contraction of skeletal muscles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gudrun Schappacher-Tilp

    Full Text Available We propose and examine a three filament model of skeletal muscle force generation, thereby extending classical cross-bridge models by involving titin-actin interaction upon active force production. In regions with optimal actin-myosin overlap, the model does not alter energy and force predictions of cross-bridge models for isometric contractions. However, in contrast to cross-bridge models, the three filament model accurately predicts history-dependent force generation in half sarcomeres for eccentric and concentric contractions, and predicts the activation-dependent forces for stretches beyond actin-myosin filament overlap.

  5. Regulation of actin cytoskeleton architecture by Eps8 and Abi1

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  6. Identification of Arabidopsis cyclase-associated protein 1 as the first nucleotide exchange factor for plant actin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaudhry, Faisal; Guérin, Christophe; von Witsch, Matthias; Blanchoin, Laurent; Staiger, Christopher J

    2007-08-01

    The actin cytoskeleton powers organelle movements, orchestrates responses to abiotic stresses, and generates an amazing array of cell shapes. Underpinning these diverse functions of the actin cytoskeleton are several dozen accessory proteins that coordinate actin filament dynamics and construct higher-order assemblies. Many actin-binding proteins from the plant kingdom have been characterized and their function is often surprisingly distinct from mammalian and fungal counterparts. The adenylyl cyclase-associated protein (CAP) has recently been shown to be an important regulator of actin dynamics in vivo and in vitro. The disruption of actin organization in cap mutant plants indicates defects in actin dynamics or the regulated assembly and disassembly of actin subunits into filaments. Current models for actin dynamics maintain that actin-depolymerizing factor (ADF)/cofilin removes ADP-actin subunits from filament ends and that profilin recharges these monomers with ATP by enhancing nucleotide exchange and delivery of subunits onto filament barbed ends. Plant profilins, however, lack the essential ability to stimulate nucleotide exchange on actin, suggesting that there might be a missing link yet to be discovered from plants. Here, we show that Arabidopsis thaliana CAP1 (AtCAP1) is an abundant cytoplasmic protein; it is present at a 1:3 M ratio with total actin in suspension cells. AtCAP1 has equivalent affinities for ADP- and ATP-monomeric actin (Kd approximately 1.3 microM). Binding of AtCAP1 to ATP-actin monomers inhibits polymerization, consistent with AtCAP1 being an actin sequestering protein. However, we demonstrate that AtCAP1 is the first plant protein to increase the rate of nucleotide exchange on actin. Even in the presence of ADF/cofilin, AtCAP1 can recharge actin monomers and presumably provide a polymerizable pool of subunits to profilin for addition onto filament ends. In turnover assays, plant profilin, ADF, and CAP act cooperatively to promote flux

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    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.

  8. Filament theory based WORM memory devices using aluminum/poly(9-vinylcarbazole)/aluminum structures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suresh, Aswin; Krishnakumar, Govind; Namboothiry, Manoj A G

    2014-07-14

    Spin coated poly(N-vinylcarbazole) (PVK) sandwiched between thermally evaporated aluminum (Al) electrodes on a glass substrate showed unipolar Write Once Read Many times (WORM) characteristics. The pristine devices were in the low resistance ON state exhibiting ohmic behavior and at a voltage near -2 V, they switched abruptly to the high resistance OFF state showing space charge limited current (SCLC). We suggest that the rupturing of metallic filaments due to Joule heating may explain the effect. The WORM devices exhibited an ON/OFF ratio of 10(8), a retention of 1000 s and an endurance of ∼10(6) cycles in both ON and OFF states.

  9. Spectrin-dependent and -independent association of F-actin with the erythrocyte membrane.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, C M; Foley, S F

    1980-08-01

    Binding of F-actin to spectrin-actin-depleted erythrocyte membrane inside-out vesicles was measured using [3H]F-actin. F-actin binding to vesicles at 25 degrees C was stimulated 5-10 fold by addition of spectrin dimers or tetramers to vesicles. Spectrin tetramer was twice as effective as dimer in stimulating actin binding, but neither tetramer nor dimer stimulated binding at 4 degrees C. The addition of purified erythrocyte membrane protein band 4.1 to spectrin-reconstituted vesicles doubled their actin-binding capacity. Trypsinization of unreconstituted vesicles that contain ghosts, decreased their F-actin-binding capacity by 70%. Whereas little or none of the residual spectrin was affected by trypsinization, band 4.1 was significantly degraded. Our results show that spectrin can anchor actin filaments to the cytoplasmic surface of erythrocyte membranes and suggest that band 4.1 may be importantly involved in the association.

  10. Actin-Dynamics in Plant Cells: The Function of Actin Perturbing Substances Jasplakinolide, Chondramides, Phalloidin, Cytochalasins, and Latrunculins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holzinger, Andreas; Blaas, Kathrin

    2016-01-01

    This chapter will give an overview of the most common F-actin perturbing substances, that are used to study actin dynamics in living plant cells in studies on morphogenesis, motility, organelle movement or when apoptosis has to be induced. These substances can be divided into two major subclasses – F-actin stabilizing and polymerizing substances like jasplakinolide, chondramides and F-actin severing compounds like chytochalasins and latrunculins. Jasplakinolide was originally isolated form a marine sponge, and can now be synthesized and has become commercially available, which is responsible for its wide distribution as membrane permeable F-actin stabilizing and polymerizing agent, which may even have anti-cancer activities. Cytochalasins, derived from fungi show an F-actin severing function and many derivatives are commercially available (A, B, C, D, E, H, J), also making it a widely used compound for F-actin disruption. The same can be stated for latrunculins (A, B), derived from red sea sponges, however the mode of action is different by binding to G-actin and inhibiting incorporation into the filament. In the case of swinholide a stable complex with actin dimers is formed resulting also in severing of F-actin. For influencing F-actin dynamics in plant cells only membrane permeable drugs are useful in a broad range. We however introduce also the phallotoxins and synthetic derivatives, as they are widely used to visualize F-actin in fixed cells. A particular uptake mechanism has been shown for hepatocytes, but has also been described in siphonal giant algae. In the present chapter the focus is set on F-actin dynamics in plant cells where alterations in cytoplasmic streaming can be particularly well studied; however methods by fluorescence applications including phalloidin- and antibody staining as well as immunofluorescence-localization of the inhibitor drugs are given. PMID:26498789

  11. Changes in actin dynamics are involved in salicylic acid signaling pathway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matoušková, Jindřiška; Janda, Martin; Fišer, Radovan; Sašek, Vladimír; Kocourková, Daniela; Burketová, Lenka; Dušková, Jiřina; Martinec, Jan; Valentová, Olga

    2014-06-01

    Changes in actin cytoskeleton dynamics are one of the crucial players in many physiological as well as non-physiological processes in plant cells. Positioning of actin filament arrays is necessary for successful establishment of primary lines of defense toward pathogen attack, depolymerization leads very often to the enhanced susceptibility to the invading pathogen. On the other hand it was also shown that the disruption of actin cytoskeleton leads to the induction of defense response leading to the expression of PATHOGENESIS RELATED proteins (PR). In this study we show that pharmacological actin depolymerization leads to the specific induction of genes in salicylic acid pathway but not that involved in jasmonic acid signaling. Life imaging of leafs of Arabidopsis thaliana with GFP-tagged fimbrin (GFP-fABD2) treated with 1 mM salicylic acid revealed rapid disruption of actin filaments resembling the pattern viewed after treatment with 200 nM latrunculin B. The effect of salicylic acid on actin filament fragmentation was prevented by exogenous addition of phosphatidic acid, which binds to the capping protein and thus promotes actin polymerization. The quantitative evaluation of actin filament dynamics is also presented.

  12. Plant villins:Versatile actin regulatory proteins

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Shanjin Huang; Xiaolu Qu; Ruihui Zhang

    2015-01-01

    Regulation of actin dynamics is a central theme in cel biology that is important for different aspects of cel physiology. Vil in, a member of the vil in/gelsolin/fragmin superfamily of proteins, is an important regulator of actin. Vil ins contain six gelsolin homology domains (G1–G6) and an extra headpiece domain. In contrast to their mammalian counterparts, plant vil ins are expressed widely, implying that plant vil ins play a more general role in regulating actin dynamics. Some plant vil ins have a defined role in modifying actin dynamics in the pol en tube;most of their in vivo activities remain to be ascertained. Recently, our understanding of the functions and mechanisms of action for plant vil ins has progressed rapidly, primarily due to the advent of Arabidopsis thaliana genetic approaches and imaging capabilities that can visualize actin dynamics at the single filament level in vitro and in living plant cel s. In this review, we focus on discussing the biochemical activities and modes of regulation of plant vil ins. Here, we present current understand-ing of the functions of plant vil ins. Final y, we highlight some of the key unanswered questions regarding the functions and regulation of plant vil ins for future research.

  13. The dynamics of filament assembly define cytoskeletal network morphology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foffano, Giulia; Levernier, Nicolas; Lenz, Martin

    2016-12-01

    The actin cytoskeleton is a key component in the machinery of eukaryotic cells, and it self-assembles out of equilibrium into a wide variety of biologically crucial structures. Although the molecular mechanisms involved are well characterized, the physical principles governing the spatial arrangement of actin filaments are not understood. Here we propose that the dynamics of actin network assembly from growing filaments results from a competition between diffusion, bundling and steric hindrance, and is responsible for the range of observed morphologies. Our model and simulations thus predict an abrupt dynamical transition between homogeneous and strongly bundled networks as a function of the actin polymerization rate. This suggests that cells may effect dramatic changes to their internal architecture through minute modifications of their nonequilibrium dynamics. Our results are consistent with available experimental data.

  14. Actin-binding protein (ABP-280) filamin gene (FLN) maps telomeric to the color vision locus (R/GCP) and centromeric to G6PD in Xq28

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gorlin, J.B. (Brigham and Women' s Hospital, Boston, MA (United States) Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, MA (United States)); Henske, E.; Hartwig, J.H.; Kwiatkowski, D.J. (Brigham and Women' s Hospital, Boston, MA (United States)); Warren, S.T.; Kunst, C.B. (Emory Univ. School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA (United States)); D' Urso, M.; Palmieri, G. (International Institute of Genetics and Biophysics, Naples, (Italy)); Bruns, G. (Children' s Hospital, Boston, MA (United States))

    1993-08-01

    Actin-binding protein-280 (ABP-280) is a dimeric actin filament-crosslinking protein that promotes orthogonal branching of actin filaments and links actin filaments to membrane glycoproteins. The authors have mapped the ABP-280 filamin gene (FLN) to Xq28 by Southern blot analysis of somatic cell hybrid lines, by fluorescence in situ hybridization, and through identification of portions of the FLN gene within cosmids and YACs mapped to Xq28. The FLN gene is found within a 200-kb region centromeric to the G6PD locus and telomeric to DSX52 and the color vision locus. 23 refs., 2 figs.

  15. Internal Motility in Stiffening Actin-Myosin Networks

    CERN Document Server

    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.

  16. Myosin filament sliding through the Z-disc relates striated muscle fibre structure to function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rode, Christian; Siebert, Tobias; Tomalka, Andre; Blickhan, Reinhard

    2016-03-16

    Striated muscle contraction requires intricate interactions of microstructures. The classic textbook assumption that myosin filaments are compressed at the meshed Z-disc during striated muscle fibre contraction conflicts with experimental evidence. For example, myosin filaments are too stiff to be compressed sufficiently by the muscular force, and, unlike compressed springs, the muscle fibres do not restore their resting length after contractions to short lengths. Further, the dependence of a fibre's maximum contraction velocity on sarcomere length is unexplained to date. In this paper, we present a structurally consistent model of sarcomere contraction that reconciles these findings with the well-accepted sliding filament and crossbridge theories. The few required model parameters are taken from the literature or obtained from reasoning based on structural arguments. In our model, the transition from hexagonal to tetragonal actin filament arrangement near the Z-disc together with a thoughtful titin arrangement enables myosin filament sliding through the Z-disc. This sliding leads to swivelled crossbridges in the adjacent half-sarcomere that dampen contraction. With no fitting of parameters required, the model predicts straightforwardly the fibre's entire force-length behaviour and the dependence of the maximum contraction velocity on sarcomere length. Our model enables a structurally and functionally consistent view of the contractile machinery of the striated fibre with possible implications for muscle diseases and evolution.

  17. An atomic model of the tropomyosin cable on F-actin.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-08-05

    Tropomyosin regulates a wide variety of actin filament functions and is best known for the role that it plays together with troponin in controlling muscle activity. For effective performance on actin filaments, adjacent 42-nm-long tropomyosin molecules are joined together by a 9- to 10-residue head-to-tail overlapping domain to form a continuous cable that wraps around the F-actin helix. Yet, despite the apparent simplicity of tropomyosin's coiled-coil structure and its well-known periodic association with successive actin subunits along F-actin, the structure of the tropomyosin cable on actin is uncertain. This is because the conformation of the overlap region that joins neighboring molecules is poorly understood, thus leaving a significant gap in our understanding of thin-filament structure and regulation. However, recent molecular-dynamics simulations of overlap segments defined their overall shape and provided unique and sufficient cues to model the whole actin-tropomyosin filament assembly in atomic detail. In this study, we show that these MD structures merge seamlessly onto the ends of tropomyosin coiled-coils. Adjacent tropomyosin molecules can then be joined together to provide a comprehensive model of the tropomyosin cable running continuously on F-actin. The resulting complete model presented here describes for the first time (to our knowledge) an atomic-level structure of αα-striated muscle tropomyosin bound to an actin filament that includes the critical overlap domain. Thus, the model provides a structural correlate to evaluate thin-filament mechanics, self-assembly mechanisms, and the effect of disease-causing mutations.

  18. Control of the actin cytoskeleton in plant cell growth

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hussey, P.J.; Ketelaar, M.J.; Deeks, M.J.

    2006-01-01

    Plant cells grow through increases in volume and cell wall surface area. The mature morphology of a plant cell is a product of the differential rates of expansion between neighboring zones of the cell wall during this process. Filamentous actin arrays are associated with plant cell growth, and the a

  19. A Legionella Effector Disrupts Host Cytoskeletal Structure by Cleaving Actin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yao; Zhu, Wenhan; Tan, Yunhao; Nakayasu, Ernesto S.; Staiger, Christopher J.

    2017-01-01

    Legionella pneumophila, the etiological agent of Legionnaires’ disease, replicates intracellularly in protozoan and human hosts. Successful colonization and replication of this pathogen in host cells requires the Dot/Icm type IVB secretion system, which translocates approximately 300 effector proteins into the host cell to modulate various cellular processes. In this study, we identified RavK as a Dot/Icm substrate that targets the host cytoskeleton and reduces actin filament abundance in mammalian cells upon ectopic expression. RavK harbors an H95EXXH99 motif associated with diverse metalloproteases, which is essential for the inhibition of yeast growth and for the induction of cell rounding in HEK293T cells. We demonstrate that the actin protein itself is the cellular target of RavK and that this effector cleaves actin at a site between residues Thr351 and Phe352. Importantly, RavK-mediated actin cleavage also occurs during L. pneumophila infection. Cleavage by RavK abolishes the ability of actin to form polymers. Furthermore, an F352A mutation renders actin resistant to RavK-mediated cleavage; expression of the mutant in mammalian cells suppresses the cell rounding phenotype caused by RavK, further establishing that actin is the physiological substrate of RavK. Thus, L. pneumophila exploits components of the host cytoskeleton by multiple effectors with distinct mechanisms, highlighting the importance of modulating cellular processes governed by the actin cytoskeleton in the intracellular life cycle of this pathogen. PMID:28129393

  20. Interaction of actin and the chloroplast protein import apparatus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jouhet, Juliette; Gray, John C

    2009-07-10

    Actin filaments are major components of the cytoskeleton and play numerous essential roles, including chloroplast positioning and plastid stromule movement, in plant cells. Actin is present in pea chloroplast envelope membrane preparations and is localized at the surface of the chloroplasts, as shown by agglutination of intact isolated chloroplasts by antibodies to actin. To identify chloroplast envelope proteins involved in actin binding, we have carried out actin co-immunoprecipitation and co-sedimentation experiments on detergent-solubilized pea chloroplast envelope membranes. Proteins co-immunoprecipitated with actin were identified by mass spectrometry and by Western blotting and included the Toc159, Toc75, Toc34, and Tic110 components of the TOC-TIC protein import apparatus. A direct interaction of actin with Escherichia coli-expressed Toc159, but not Toc33, was shown by co-sedimentation experiments, suggesting that Toc159 is the component of the TOC complex that interacts with actin on the cytosolic side of the outer envelope membrane. The physiological significance of this interaction is unknown, but it may play a role in the import of nuclear-encoded photosynthesis proteins.

  1. Effect of temperature on the mechanism of actin polymerization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zimmerle, C T; Frieden, C

    1986-10-21

    The rate of the Mg2+-induced polymerization of rabbit skeletal muscle G-actin has been measured as as function of temperature at pH 8 by using various concentrations of Mg2+, Ca2+, and G-actin. A polymerization mechanism similar to that proposed at this pH [Frieden, C. (1983) Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 80, 6513-6517] was found to fit the data from 10 to 35 degrees C. From the kinetic data, no evidence for actin filament fragmentation was found at any temperature. Dimer formation is the most temperature-sensitive step, with the ratio of forward and reverse rate constants changing 4 orders of magnitude from 10 to 35 degrees C. Over this temperature change, all other ratios of forward and reverse rate constants change 7-fold or less, and the critical concentration remains nearly constant. The reversible Mg2+-induced isomerization of G-actin monomer occurs to a greater extent with increasing temperature, measured either by using N-(iodoacetyl)-N'-(5-sulfo-1-naphthyl)ethylenediamine-labeled actin or by simulation of the full-time course of the polymerization reaction. This is partially due to Mg2+ binding becoming tighter, and Ca2+ binding becoming weaker, with increasing temperature. Elongation rates from the filament-pointed end, determined by using actin nucleated by plasma gelsolin, show a temperature dependence slightly larger than that expected for a diffusion-limited reaction.

  2. Importance of a Lys113-Glu195 intermonomer ionic bond in F-actin stabilization and regulation by yeast formins Bni1p and Bnr1p.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wen, Kuo-Kuang; McKane, Melissa; Rubenstein, Peter A

    2013-06-28

    Proper actin cytoskeletal function requires actin's ability to generate a stable filament and requires that this reaction be regulated by actin-binding proteins via allosteric effects on the actin. A proposed ionic interaction in the actin filament interior between Lys(113) of one monomer and Glu(195) of a monomer in the apposing strand potentially fosters cross-strand stabilization and allosteric communication between the filament interior and exterior. We interrupted the potential interaction by creating either K113E or E195K actin. By combining the two, we also reversed the interaction with a K113E/E195K (E/K) mutant. In all cases, we isolated viable cells expressing only the mutant actin. Either single mutant cell displays significantly decreased growth in YPD medium. This deficit is rescued in the double mutant. All three mutants display abnormal phalloidin cytoskeletal staining. K113E actin exhibits a critical concentration of polymerization 4 times higher than WT actin, nucleates more poorly, and forms shorter filaments. Restoration of the ionic bond, E/K, eliminates most of these problems. E195K actin behaves much more like WT actin, indicating accommodation of the neighboring lysines. Both Bni1 and Bnr1 formin FH1-FH2 fragment accelerate polymerization of WT, E/K, and to a lesser extent E195K actin. Bni1p FH1-FH2 dramatically inhibits K113E actin polymerization, consistent with barbed end capping. However, Bnr1p FH1-FH2 restores K113E actin polymerization, forming single filaments. In summary, the proposed ionic interaction plays an important role in filament stabilization and in the propagation of allosteric changes affecting formin regulation in an isoform-specific fashion.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  4. Actin-Capping Protein and the Hippo pathway regulate F-actin and tissue growth in Drosophila.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández, Beatriz García; Gaspar, Pedro; Brás-Pereira, Catarina; Jezowska, Barbara; Rebelo, Sofia Raquel; Janody, Florence

    2011-06-01

    The conserved Hippo tumor suppressor pathway is a key kinase cascade that controls tissue growth by regulating the nuclear import and activity of the transcription co-activator Yorkie. Here, we report that the actin-Capping Protein αβ heterodimer, which regulates actin polymerization, also functions to suppress inappropriate tissue growth by inhibiting Yorkie activity. Loss of Capping Protein activity results in abnormal accumulation of apical F-actin, reduced Hippo pathway activity and the ectopic expression of several Yorkie target genes that promote cell survival and proliferation. Reduction of two other actin-regulatory proteins, Cofilin and the cyclase-associated protein Capulet, cause abnormal F-actin accumulation, but only the loss of Capulet, like that of Capping Protein, induces ectopic Yorkie activity. Interestingly, F-actin also accumulates abnormally when Hippo pathway activity is reduced or abolished, independently of Yorkie activity, whereas overexpression of the Hippo pathway component expanded can partially reverse the abnormal accumulation of F-actin in cells depleted for Capping Protein. Taken together, these findings indicate a novel interplay between Hippo pathway activity and actin filament dynamics that is essential for normal growth control.

  5. Conformational changes in reconstituted skeletal muscle thin filaments observed by fluorescence spectroscopy

    OpenAIRE

    MIKI, Masao

    2007-01-01

    The cyclic interaction of myosin and actin coupled ATP hydrolysis generates the mechanical force of muscle contraction. During this process, the system passes through several steps. One of these is thought to be identical to the stable rigor complex formed by myosin and actin in the absence of ATP. This cyclic interaction is regulated by changes in tropomyosin (Tm) and troponin (Tn) located on the actin filament in response alterations in intracellular Ca2+ concentration (Ebashi et al., 1969)...

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

    KAUST Repository

    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.

  7. Mutational Analysis Reveals a Noncontractile but Interactive Role of Actin and Profilin in Viral RNA-Dependent RNA Synthesis▿

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harpen, Mary; Barik, Tiasha; Musiyenko, Alla; Barik, Sailen

    2009-01-01

    As obligatory parasites, viruses co-opt a variety of cellular functions for robust replication. The expression of the nonsegmented negative-strand RNA genome of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), a significant pediatric pathogen, absolutely requires actin and is stimulated by the actin-regulatory protein profilin. As actin is a major contractile protein, it was important to determine whether the known functional domains of actin and profilin were important for their ability to activate RSV transcription. Analyses of recombinant mutants in a reconstituted RSV transcription system suggested that the divalent-cation-binding domain of actin is critically needed for binding to the RSV genome template and for the activation of viral RNA synthesis. In contrast, the nucleotide-binding domain and the N-terminal acidic domain were needed neither for template binding nor for transcription. Specific surface residues of actin, required for actin-actin contact during filamentation, were also nonessential for viral transcription. Unlike actin, profilin did not directly bind to the viral template but was recruited by actin. Mutation of the interactive residues of actin or profilin, resulting in the loss of actin-profilin binding, also abolished profilin's ability to stimulate viral transcription. Together, these results suggest that actin acts as a classical transcription factor for the virus by divalent-cation-dependent binding to the viral template and that profilin acts as a transcriptional cofactor, in part by associating with actin. This essential viral role of actin is independent of its contractile cellular role. PMID:19710142

  8. A dynamin-actin interaction is required for vesicle scission during endocytosis in yeast.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palmer, Sarah E; Smaczynska-de Rooij, Iwona I; Marklew, Christopher J; Allwood, Ellen G; Mishra, Ritu; Johnson, Simeon; Goldberg, Martin W; Ayscough, Kathryn R

    2015-03-30

    Actin is critical for endocytosis in yeast cells, and also in mammalian cells under tension. However, questions remain as to how force generated through actin polymerization is transmitted to the plasma membrane to drive invagination and scission. Here, we reveal that the yeast dynamin Vps1 binds and bundles filamentous actin. Mutational analysis of Vps1 in a helix of the stalk domain identifies a mutant RR457-458EE that binds actin more weakly. In vivo analysis of Vps1 function demonstrates that the mutation disrupts endocytosis but not other functions of Vps1 such as vacuolar trafficking or peroxisome fission. The mutant Vps1 is stably expressed in cells and co-localizes with the endocytic reporters Abp1 and the amphiphysin Rvs167. Detailed analysis of individual endocytic patch behavior indicates that the mutation causes aberrant movements in later stages of endocytosis, consistent with a scission defect. Ultrastructural analysis of yeast cells using electron microscopy reveals a significant increase in invagination depth, further supporting a role for the Vps1-actin interaction during scission. In vitro analysis of the mutant protein demonstrates that--like wild-type Vps1--it is able to form oligomeric rings, but, critically, it has lost its ability to bundle actin filaments into higher-order structures. A model is proposed in which actin filaments bind Vps1 during invagination, and this interaction is important to transduce the force of actin polymerization to the membrane to drive successful scission.

  9. Actinic cheilitis in dental practice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Savage, N W; McKay, C; Faulkner, C

    2010-06-01

    Actinic cheilitis is a potentially premalignant condition involving predominantly the vermilion of the lower lip. The aim of the current paper was to review the clinical presentation of actinic cheilitis and demonstrate the development of management plans using a series of cases. These are designed to provide immediate treatment where required but also to address the medium and long-term requirements of the patient. The authors suggest that the clinical examination of lips and the assessment of actinic cheilitis and other lip pathology become a regular part of the routine soft tissue examination undertaken as a part of the periodic examination of dental patients. Early recognition of actinic cheilitis can allow the development of strategies for individual patients that prevent progression. These are based on past sun exposure, future lifestyle changes and the daily use of emollient sunscreens, broad-brimmed hats and avoidance of sun exposure during the middle of the day. This is a service that is not undertaken as a matter of routine in general medical practice as patients are not seen with the regularity of dental patients and generally not under the ideal examination conditions available in the dental surgery.

  10. Live-cell imaging of Marburg virus-infected cells uncovers actin-dependent transport of nucleocapsids over long distances.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schudt, Gordian; Kolesnikova, Larissa; Dolnik, Olga; Sodeik, Beate; Becker, Stephan

    2013-08-27

    Transport of large viral nucleocapsids from replication centers to assembly sites requires contributions from the host cytoskeleton via cellular adaptor and motor proteins. For the Marburg and Ebola viruses, related viruses that cause severe hemorrhagic fevers, the mechanism of nucleocapsid transport remains poorly understood. Here we developed and used live-cell imaging of fluorescently labeled viral and host proteins to characterize the dynamics and molecular requirements of nucleocapsid transport in Marburg virus-infected cells under biosafety level 4 conditions. The study showed a complex actin-based transport of nucleocapsids over long distances from the viral replication centers to the budding sites. Only after the nucleocapsids had associated with the matrix viral protein VP40 at the plasma membrane were they recruited into filopodia and cotransported with host motor myosin 10 toward the budding sites at the tip or side of the long cellular protrusions. Three different transport modes and velocities were identified: (i) Along actin filaments in the cytosol, nucleocapsids were transported at ∼200 nm/s; (ii) nucleocapsids migrated from one actin filament to another at ∼400 nm/s; and (iii) VP40-associated nucleocapsids moved inside filopodia at 100 nm/s. Unique insights into the spatiotemporal dynamics of nucleocapsids and their interaction with the cytoskeleton and motor proteins can lead to novel classes of antivirals that interfere with the trafficking and subsequent release of the Marburg virus from infected cells.

  11. Polyelectrolyte properties of filamentous biopolymers and their consequences in biological fluids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janmey, Paul A; Slochower, David R; Wang, Yu-Hsiu; Wen, Qi; Cēbers, Andrejs

    2014-03-14

    Anionic polyelectrolyte filaments are common in biological cells. DNA, RNA, the cytoskeletal filaments F-actin, microtubules, and intermediate filaments, and polysaccharides such as hyaluronan that form the pericellular matrix all have large net negative charge densities distributed over their surfaces. Several filamentous viruses with diameters and stiffnesses similar to those of cytoskeletal polymers also have similar negative charge densities. Extracellular protein filaments such collagen, fibrin and elastin, in contrast, have notably smaller charge densities and do not behave as highly charged polyelectrolytes in solution. This review summarizes data that demonstrate generic counterion-mediated effects on four structurally unrelated biopolymers of similar charge density: F-actin, vimentin, Pf1 virus, and DNA, and explores the possible biological and pathophysiological consequences of the polyelectrolyte properties of biological filaments.

  12. Recent advances into vanadyl, vanadate and decavanadate interactions with actin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramos, S; Moura, J J G; Aureliano, M

    2012-01-01

    Although the number of papers about "vanadium" has doubled in the last decade, the studies about "vanadium and actin" are scarce. In the present review, the effects of vanadyl, vanadate and decavanadate on actin structure and function are compared. Decavanadate (51)V NMR signals, at -516 ppm, broadened and decreased in intensity upon actin titration, whereas no effects were observed for vanadate monomers, at -560 ppm. Decavanadate is the only species inducing actin cysteine oxidation and vanadyl formation, both processes being prevented by the natural ligand of the protein, ATP. Vanadyl titration with monomeric actin (G-actin), analysed by EPR spectroscopy, reveals a 1:1 binding stoichiometry and a K(d) of 7.5 μM(-1). Both decavanadate and vanadyl inhibited G-actin polymerization into actin filaments (F-actin), with a IC(50) of 68 and 300 μM, respectively, as analysed by light scattering assays, whereas no effects were detected for vanadate up to 2 mM. However, only vanadyl (up to 200 μM) induces 100% of G-actin intrinsic fluorescence quenching, whereas decavanadate shows an opposite effect, which suggests the presence of vanadyl high affinity actin binding sites. Decavanadate increases (2.6-fold) the actin hydrophobic surface, evaluated using the ANSA probe, whereas vanadyl decreases it (15%). Both vanadium species increased the ε-ATP exchange rate (k = 6.5 × 10(-3) s(-1) and 4.47 × 10(-3) s(-1) for decavanadate and vanadyl, respectively). Finally, (1)H NMR spectra of G-actin treated with 0.1 mM decavanadate clearly indicate that major alterations occur in protein structure, which are much less visible in the presence of ATP, confirming the preventive effect of the nucleotide on the decavanadate interaction with the protein. Putting it all together, it is suggested that actin, which is involved in many cellular processes, might be a potential target not only for decavanadate but above all for vanadyl. By affecting actin structure and function, vanadium can

  13. 3D Filament Network Segmentation with Multiple Active Contours

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    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.

  15. Highly Sensitive Wearable Textile-Based Humidity Sensor Made of High-Strength, Single-Walled Carbon Nanotube/Poly(vinyl alcohol) Filaments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Gengheng; Byun, Joon-Hyung; Oh, Youngseok; Jung, Byung-Mun; Cha, Hwa-Jin; Seong, Dong-Gi; Um, Moon-Kwang; Hyun, Sangil; Chou, Tsu-Wei

    2017-02-08

    Textile-based humidity sensors can be an important component of smart wearable electronic-textiles and have potential applications in the management of wounds, bed-wetting, and skin pathologies or for microclimate control in clothing. Here, we report a wearable textile-based humidity sensor for the first time using high strength (∼750 MPa) and ultratough (energy-to-break, 4300 J g(-1)) SWCNT/PVA filaments via a wet-spinning process. The conductive SWCNT networks in the filaments can be modulated by adjusting the intertube distance by swelling the PVA molecular chains via the absorption of water molecules. The diameter of a SWCNT/PVA filament under wet conditions can be as much as 2 times that under dry conditions. The electrical resistance of a fiber sensor stitched onto a hydrophobic textile increases significantly (by more than 220 times) after water sprayed. Textile-based humidity sensors using a 1:5 weight ratio of SWCNT/PVA filaments showed high sensitivity in high relative humidity. The electrical resistance increases by more than 24 times in a short response time of 40 s. We also demonstrated that our sensor can be used to monitor water leakage on a high hydrophobic textile (contact angle of 115.5°). These smart textiles will pave a new way for the design of novel wearable sensors for monitoring blood leakage, sweat, and underwear wetting.

  16. Filamentous Growth in Eremothecium Fungi

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    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....

  17. Concentration profiles of actin-binding molecules in lamellipodia

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  18. Drebrin attenuates the interaction between actin and myosin-V.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishikawa, Ryoki; Katoh, Kaoru; Takahashi, Ayumi; Xie, Ce; Oseki, Koushi; Watanabe, Michitoshi; Igarashi, Michihiro; Nakamura, Akio; Kohama, Kazuhiro

    2007-07-27

    Drebrin-A is an actin-binding protein localized in the dendritic spines of mature neurons, and has been suggested to affect spine morphology [K. Hayashi, T. Shirao, Change in the shape of dendritic spines caused by overexpression of drebrin in cultured cortical neurons, J. Neurosci. 19 (1999) 3918-3925]. However, no biochemical analysis of drebrin-A has yet been reported. In this study, we purified drebrin-A using a bacterial expression system, and characterized it in vitro. Drebrin-A bound to actin filaments with a stoichiometry of one drebrin molecule to 5-6 actin molecules. Furthermore, drebrin-A decreased the Mg-ATPase activity of myosin V. In vitro motility assay revealed that the attachment of F-actin to glass surface coated with myosin-V was decreased by drebrin-A, but once F-actin attached to the surface, the sliding speed of F-actin was unaffected by the presence of drebrin A. These findings suggest that drebrin-A may affect spine dynamics, vesicle transport, and other myosin-V-driven motility in neurons through attenuating the interaction between actin and myosin-V.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    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.

  20. Cell-cycle regulation of formin-mediated actin cable assembly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miao, Yansong; Wong, Catherine C L; Mennella, Vito; Michelot, Alphée; Agard, David A; Holt, Liam J; Yates, John R; Drubin, David G

    2013-11-19

    Assembly of appropriately oriented actin cables nucleated by formin proteins is necessary for many biological processes in diverse eukaryotes. However, compared with knowledge of how nucleation of dendritic actin filament arrays by the actin-related protein-2/3 complex is regulated, the in vivo regulatory mechanisms for actin cable formation are less clear. To gain insights into mechanisms for regulating actin cable assembly, we reconstituted the assembly process in vitro by introducing microspheres functionalized with the C terminus of the budding yeast formin Bni1 into extracts prepared from yeast cells at different cell-cycle stages. EM studies showed that unbranched actin filament bundles were reconstituted successfully in the yeast extracts. Only extracts enriched in the mitotic cyclin Clb2 were competent for actin cable assembly, and cyclin-dependent kinase 1 activity was indispensible. Cyclin-dependent kinase 1 activity also was found to regulate cable assembly in vivo. Here we present evidence that formin cell-cycle regulation is conserved in vertebrates. The use of the cable-reconstitution system to test roles for the key actin-binding proteins tropomyosin, capping protein, and cofilin provided important insights into assembly regulation. Furthermore, using mass spectrometry, we identified components of the actin cables formed in yeast extracts, providing the basis for comprehensive understanding of cable assembly and regulation.

  1. F-actin distribution and function during sexual development in Eimeria maxima.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frölich, Sonja; Wallach, Michael

    2015-06-01

    To determine the involvement of the actin cytoskeleton in macrogametocyte growth and oocyst wall formation, freshly purified macrogametocytes and oocysts were stained with Oregon Green 514 conjugated phalloidin to visualize F-actin microfilaments, while Evans blue staining was used to detect type 1 wall forming bodies (WFB1s) and the outer oocyst wall. The double-labelled parasites were then analysed at various stages of sexual development using three-dimensional confocal microscopy. The results showed F-actin filaments were distributed throughout the entire cytoplasm of mature Eimeria maxima macrogametocytes forming a web-like meshwork of actin filaments linking the type 1 WFBs together into structures resembling 'beads on a string'. At the early stages of oocyst wall formation, F-actin localization changed in alignment with the egg-shaped morphology of the forming oocysts with F-actin microfilaments making direct contact with the WFB1s. In tissue oocysts, the labelled actin cytoskeleton was situated underneath the forming outer layer of the oocyst wall. Treatment of macrogametocytes in vitro with the actin depolymerizing agents, Cytochalasin D and Latrunculin, led to a reduction in the numbers of mature WFB1s in the cytoplasm of the developing macrogametocytes, indicating that the actin plays an important role in WFB1 transport and oocyst wall formation in E. maxima.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    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.

  3. Actinic lichen nitidus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Loretta Davis

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available We present the case of a 29-year-old black female with an initial clinical and histopathologic diagnosis of actinic lichen nitidus. Three years later, she presented with scattered hyperpigmented macules with oval pink/viol­aceous plaques bilaterally on her forearms and on her neck, clinically consistent with actinic lichen planus. She was treated with topical steroids at each visit, with subsequent resolution of her lesions. In this report, we discuss the spectrum of actinic lichenoid dermatoses and of disease that presents even in the same patient.

  4. A high-affinity interaction with ADP-actin monomers underlies the mechanism and in vivo function of Srv2/cyclase-associated protein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattila, Pieta K; Quintero-Monzon, Omar; Kugler, Jamie; Moseley, James B; Almo, Steven C; Lappalainen, Pekka; Goode, Bruce L

    2004-11-01

    Cyclase-associated protein (CAP), also called Srv2 in Saccharomyces cerevisiae, is a conserved actin monomer-binding protein that promotes cofilin-dependent actin turnover in vitro and in vivo. However, little is known about the mechanism underlying this function. Here, we show that S. cerevisiae CAP binds with strong preference to ADP-G-actin (Kd 0.02 microM) compared with ATP-G-actin (Kd 1.9 microM) and competes directly with cofilin for binding ADP-G-actin. Further, CAP blocks actin monomer addition specifically to barbed ends of filaments, in contrast to profilin, which blocks monomer addition to pointed ends of filaments. The actin-binding domain of CAP is more extensive than previously suggested and includes a recently solved beta-sheet structure in the C-terminus of CAP and adjacent sequences. Using site-directed mutagenesis, we define evolutionarily conserved residues that mediate binding to ADP-G-actin and demonstrate that these activities are required for CAP function in vivo in directing actin organization and polarized cell growth. Together, our data suggest that in vivo CAP competes with cofilin for binding ADP-actin monomers, allows rapid nucleotide exchange to occur on actin, and then because of its 100-fold weaker binding affinity for ATP-actin compared with ADP-actin, allows other cellular factors such as profilin to take the handoff of ATP-actin and facilitate barbed end assembly.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    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.

  6. Reconstruction of cytoskeleton filament actin of human mature dendritic cells by transforming growth factor-β1 in a concentration-dependent manner%转化生长因子-β1以浓度依赖的方式重组人成熟树突状细胞的细胞骨架丝状肌动蛋白

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    郑勤妮; 许筱莉; 姚伟娟; 田克诚; 曾柱

    2014-01-01

    目的:探索转化生长因子β1(tansforming growth factor-β1,TGF-β1)对人成熟树突状细胞(mature dendritic cells,mDCs)骨架丝状肌动蛋白(filament actin,F-actin)及其部分骨架结合蛋白表达的影响,为深入理解树突状细胞(dendritic cells,DCs)的生物学行为和提高基于DCs的抗肿瘤免疫治疗的临床效率提供线索.方法:不同浓度的TGF-β1处理mDCs后,用激光共聚焦显微镜和免疫印迹实验分别研究细胞骨架F-actin的结构和部分细胞骨架结合蛋白表达水平的变化.结果:(1)与对照组相比,TGF-β1处理后的mDCs的F-actin出现了明显重排,F-actin的表达量在3 ng/ml组下调(P=0.000),在5 ng/ml组上调(P=0.000).(2)mDCs表面丝状突起长度和数量的变化,长度在3 ng/ml和5 ng/ml组较对照组细、短(P=0.001,0.000);数量在1、3 ng/ml和5 ng/ml组较对照组少而稀疏(P=0.000);在7 ng/ml组mDCs表面丝状突起长度和数量的变化均无统计学意义(P=0.114);通过回归分析细胞丝状突起长度和数量与F-actin表达量之间存在非线性相关性(R2分别为0.828和0.746,P=0.000).(3)细胞骨架蛋白结合蛋白的表达,fascin1在所有实验组中均出现了下调(P=0.001、0.000);p-cofilin1与总cofilin1的表达水平比在1 ng/ml和3 ng/ml组均下调(P=0.000);profilin的表达在1、3 ng/ml和5 ng/ml组均上调(P=0.001、0.001、0.013).结论:TGF-β1以浓度依赖的方式影响mDCs的细胞骨架F-actin结构及其部分结合蛋白的表达,提示在临床上施行基于DCs的抗肿瘤免疫治疗时,需以适当的方式阻断TGF-β1的信号转导通路,这对进一步深入理解DCs的生物学行为和肿瘤的免疫逃逸机制具有重要意义.

  7. Capu and Spire Assemble a Cytoplasmic Actin Mesh that Maintains Microtubule Organization in the Drosophila Oocyte

    OpenAIRE

    Dahlgaard, Katja; Alexandre A.S.F. Raposo; Niccoli, Teresa; St Johnston, Daniel

    2007-01-01

    Summary Mutants in the actin nucleators Cappuccino and Spire disrupt the polarized microtubule network in the Drosophila oocyte that defines the anterior-posterior axis, suggesting that microtubule organization depends on actin. Here, we show that Cappuccino and Spire organize an isotropic mesh of actin filaments in the oocyte cytoplasm. capu and spire mutants lack this mesh, whereas overexpressed truncated Cappuccino stabilizes the mesh in the presence of Latrunculin A and partially rescues ...

  8. Phosphatidylserine liposomes can be tethered by caldesmon to actin filaments.

    OpenAIRE

    Makuch, R.; Zasada, A; K. Mabuchi; Krauze, K; C. L. Wang; Dabrowska, R

    1997-01-01

    Rotary shadowing electron microscopy revealed that attachment of caldesmon to phosphatidylserine (PS) liposomes was mainly through its C-terminal end. To determine the PS-binding sites of caldesmon, we have made use of synthetic peptides covering the two C-terminal calmodulin binding sites and a recombinant fragment corresponding to the N-terminal end of the C-terminal domain that contains an amphipathic helix. Interactions of these peptides with the PS liposomes were studied by nondenaturing...

  9. An order of magnitude faster AIP1-associated actin disruption than nucleation by the Arp2/3 complex in lamellipodia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takahiro Tsuji

    Full Text Available The mechanism of lamellipod actin turnover is still under debate. To clarify the intracellular behavior of the recently-identified actin disruption mechanism, we examined kinetics of AIP1 using fluorescent single-molecule speckle microscopy. AIP1 is thought to cap cofilin-generated actin barbed ends. Here we demonstrate a reduction in actin-associated AIP1 in lamellipodia of cells overexpressing LIM-kinase. Moreover, actin-associated AIP1 was rapidly abolished by jasplakinolide, which concurrently blocked the F-actin-cofilin interaction. Jasplakinolide also slowed dissociation of AIP1, which is analogous to the effect of this drug on capping protein. These findings provide in vivo evidence of the association of AIP1 with barbed ends generated by cofilin-catalyzed filament disruption. Single-molecule observation found distribution of F-actin-associated AIP1 throughout lamellipodia, and revealed even faster dissociation of AIP1 than capping protein. The estimated overall AIP1-associated actin disruption rate, 1.8 microM/s, was one order of magnitude faster than Arp2/3 complex-catalyzed actin nucleation in lamellipodia. This rate does not suffice the filament severing rate predicted in our previous high frequency filament severing-annealing hypothesis. Our data together with recent biochemical studies imply barbed end-preferred frequent filament disruption. Frequent generation of AIP1-associated barbed ends and subsequent release of AIP1 may be the mechanism that facilitates previously observed ubiquitous actin polymerization throughout lamellipodia.

  10. Filamentous Fungi Fermentation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    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...

  11. Filamentation in Laser Wakefields

    Science.gov (United States)

    Los, Eva; Trines, Raoul; Silva, Luis; Bingham, Robert

    2016-10-01

    Laser filamentation instability is observed in plasma wakefields with sub-critical densities, and in high density inertial fusion plasmas. This leads to non-uniform acceleration or compression respectively. Here, we present simulation results on laser filamentation in plasma wakefields. The 2-D simulations are carried out using the particle-in-cell code Osiris. The filament intensity was found to increase exponentially before saturating. The maximum amplitude to which the highest intensity filament grew for a specific set of parameters was also recorded, and plotted against a corresponding parameter value. Clear, positively correlated linear trends were established between plasma density, transverse wavenumber k, laser pulse amplitude and maximum filament amplitude. Plasma density and maximum filament amplitude also showed a positive correlation, which saturated after a certain plasma density. Pulse duration and interaction length did not affect either filament intensity or transverse k value in a predictable manner. There was no discernible trend between pulse amplitude and filament width.

  12. Capu and Spire assemble a cytoplasmic actin mesh that maintains microtubule organization in the Drosophila oocyte.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dahlgaard, Katja; Raposo, Alexandre A S F; Niccoli, Teresa; St Johnston, Daniel

    2007-10-01

    Mutants in the actin nucleators Cappuccino and Spire disrupt the polarized microtubule network in the Drosophila oocyte that defines the anterior-posterior axis, suggesting that microtubule organization depends on actin. Here, we show that Cappuccino and Spire organize an isotropic mesh of actin filaments in the oocyte cytoplasm. capu and spire mutants lack this mesh, whereas overexpressed truncated Cappuccino stabilizes the mesh in the presence of Latrunculin A and partially rescues spire mutants. Spire overexpression cannot rescue capu mutants, but prevents actin mesh disassembly at stage 10B and blocks late cytoplasmic streaming. We also show that the actin mesh regulates microtubules indirectly, by inhibiting kinesin-dependent cytoplasmic flows. Thus, the Capu pathway controls alternative states of the oocyte cytoplasm: when active, it assembles an actin mesh that suppresses kinesin motility to maintain a polarized microtubule cytoskeleton. When inactive, unrestrained kinesin movement generates flows that wash microtubules to the cortex.

  13. Mg-ATPase activity and motility of native thick filaments isolated from the anterior byssus retractor muscle of Mytilus edulis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamada, A; Ishii, N; Shimmen, T; Takahashi, K

    1989-04-01

    A method for isolating native thick filaments from the anterior byssus retractor muscle (ABRM) of Mytilus edulis is described. Sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis showed that the isolated thick filament preparation contained mainly paramyosin and myosin but almost no actin. Electron microscopy of negatively stained preparations showed that the isolated thick filaments were tapered at both ends and of various sizes, in the range 5-31 microns in length and 51-94nm in width in the central region. Central bare zones were observed in the smaller filaments, but were not clearly seen in the larger filaments. Mg-ATPase activity of the isolated thick filaments was activated by skeletal muscle F-actin in a Ca2+-dependent manner. The maximal activity was about 20 nmol min-1 mg-1 thick filaments (20 degrees C, pH7.0). Motility of the thick filaments attached to latex beads (diameter, 2 microns) was also studied using the native actin cables of the freshwater alga, Chara. In the presence of Mg-ATP and Ca2+, the beads moved along the actin cables at a maximal velocity of about 1 micron s-1. In the absence of Ca2+, almost no movement was observed. These results show that the isolated thick filaments are structurally intact and retain the essential mechanochemical characteristics of the ABRM myosin.

  14. Loss of cofilin 1 disturbs actin dynamics, adhesion between enveloping and deep cell layers and cell movements during gastrulation in zebrafish.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chun-Wei Lin

    Full Text Available During gastrulation, cohesive migration drives associated cell layers to the completion of epiboly in zebrafish. The association of different layers relies on E-cadherin based cellular junctions, whose stability can be affected by actin turnover. Here, we examined the effect of malfunctioning actin turnover on the epibolic movement by knocking down an actin depolymerizing factor, cofilin 1, using antisense morpholino oligos (MO. Knockdown of cfl1 interfered with epibolic movement of deep cell layer (DEL but not in the enveloping layer (EVL and the defect could be specifically rescued by overexpression of cfl1. It appeared that the uncoordinated movements of DEL and EVL were regulated by the differential expression of cfl1 in the DEL, but not EVL as shown by in situ hybridization. The dissociation of DEL and EVL was further evident by the loss of adhesion between layers by using transmission electronic and confocal microscopy analyses. cfl1 morphants also exhibited abnormal convergent extension, cellular migration and actin filaments, but not involution of hypoblast. The cfl1 MO-induced cell migration defect was found to be cell-autonomous in cell transplantation assays. These results suggest that proper actin turnover mediated by Cfl1 is essential for adhesion between DEL and EVL and cell movements during gastrulation in zebrafish.

  15. Comparison of mechanical properties for polyamide 12 composite-based biomaterials fabricated by fused filament fabrication and injection molding

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rahim, Tuan Noraihan Azila Tuan; Abdullah, Abdul Manaf; Akil, Hazizan Md; Mohamad, Dasmawati

    2016-12-01

    The emergence of 3D printing technology known as fused filament fabrication (FFF) has offered the possibility of producing an anatomically accurate, patient specific implant with more affordable prices. The only weakness of this technology is related to incompatibility and lack of properties of current material to be applied in biomedical. Therefore, this study aims to develop a new, polymer composite-based biomaterial that exhibits a high processability using FFF technique, strong enough and shows acceptable biocompatibility, and safe for biomedical use. Polyamide 12 (PA12), which meets all these requirements was incorporated with two bioceramic fillers, zirconia and hydroxyapatite in order to improve the mechanical and bioactivity properties. The obtained mechanical properties were compared with injection-molded specimens and also a commercial biomedical product, HAPEXTM which is composed of hydroxyapatite and polyethylene. The yield strength and modulus of the PA12 composites increased steadily with increasing filler loading. Although the strength of printed PA12 composites were reduced compared with injection molded specimen, but still higher than HAPEXTM material. The higher surface roughness obtained by printed PA12 was expected to enhance the cell adhesion and provide better implant fixation.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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. Identification and immunolocalization of actin cytoskeletal components in light- and dark-adapted octopus retinas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Velasco, B; Martinez, J M; Ochoa, G H; Miller, A M; Clark, Y M; Matsumoto, B; Robles, L J

    1999-06-01

    Photoreceptors in the octopus retina are of the rhabdomeric type, with rhabdomeres arising from the plasma membrane on opposite sides of the cylindrical outer segment. Each rhabdomere microvillus has an actin filament core, but other actin-binding proteins have not been identified. We used immunoblotting techniques to identify actin-binding proteins in octopus retinal extracts and immunofluorescence microscopy to localize the same proteins in fixed tissue. Antibodies directed against alpha-actinin and vinculin recognized single protein bands on immunoblots of octopus retinal extract with molecular weights comparable to the same proteins in other tissues. Anti-filamin identified two closely spaced bands similar in molecular weight to filamin in other species. Antibodies to the larger of the Drosophila ninaC gene products, p174, identified two bands lower in molecular weight than p174. Anti-villin localized a band that was significantly less in molecular weight than villin found in other cells. Epifluorescence and confocal microscopy were used to map the location of the same actin-binding proteins in dark- and light-adapted octopus photoreceptors and other retinal cells. Antibodies to most of the actin-binding proteins showed heavy staining of the photoreceptor proximal/supportive cell region accompanied by rhabdom membrane and rhabdom tip staining, although subtle differences were detected with individual antibodies. In dark-adapted retinas anti-alpha-actinin stained the photoreceptor proximal/supportive cell region where an extensive junctional complex joins these two cell types, but in the light, immunoreactivity extended above the junctional complex into the rhabdom bases. Most antibodies densely stained the rhabdom tips but anti-villin exhibited a striated pattern of localization at the tips. We believe that the actin-binding proteins identified in the octopus retina may play a significant role in the formation of new rhabdomere microvilli in the dark. We

  18. The C-terminal dimerization motif of cyclase-associated protein is essential for actin monomer regulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iwase, Shohei; Ono, Shoichiro

    2016-12-01

    Cyclase-associated protein (CAP) is a conserved actin-regulatory protein that functions together with actin depolymerizing factor (ADF)/cofilin to enhance actin filament dynamics. CAP has multiple functional domains, and the function to regulate actin monomers is carried out by its C-terminal half containing a Wiskott-Aldrich Syndrome protein homology 2 (WH2) domain, a CAP and X-linked retinitis pigmentosa 2 (CARP) domain, and a dimerization motif. WH2 and CARP are implicated in binding to actin monomers and important for enhancing filament turnover. However, the role of the dimerization motif is unknown. Here, we investigated the function of the dimerization motif of CAS-2, a CAP isoform in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, in actin monomer regulation. CAS-2 promotes ATP-dependent recycling of ADF/cofilin-bound actin monomers for polymerization by enhancing exchange of actin-bound nucleotides. The C-terminal half of CAS-2 (CAS-2C) has nearly as strong activity as full-length CAS-2. Maltose-binding protein (MBP)-tagged CAS-2C is a dimer. However, MBP-CAS-2C with a truncation of either one or two C-terminal β-strands is monomeric. Truncations of the dimerization motif in MBP-CAS-2C nearly completely abolish its activity to sequester actin monomers from polymerization and enhance nucleotide exchange on actin monomers. As a result, these CAS-2C variants, also in the context of full-length CAS-2, fail to compete with ADF/cofilin to release actin monomers for polymerization. CAS-2C variants lacking the dimerization motif exhibit enhanced binding to actin filaments, which is mediated by WH2. Taken together, these results suggest that the evolutionarily conserved dimerization motif of CAP is essential for its C-terminal region to exert the actin monomer-specific regulatory function.

  19. Tuning microtubule-based transport via filamentous MAPs: the problem of dynein

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vershinin, Michael; Xu, Jing; Razafsky, David S.; King, Stephen J.; Gross, Steven P.

    2010-01-01

    We recently proposed that regulating the single-to-multiple motor transition was a likely strategy for regulating kinesin-based transport in vivo. Here, we use an in vitro bead assay coupled with an optical trap to investigate how this proposed regulatory mechanism affects dynein-based transport. We show that tau’s regulation of kinesin function can proceed without interfering with dynein-based transport. Surprisingly, at extremely high tau levels—where kinesin cannot bind microtubules—dynein can still contact microtubules. The difference between tau’s effects on kinesin- and dynein-based motility suggests that tau can be used to tune relative amounts of plus-end and minus-end directed transport. As in the case of kinesin, we find that the 3RS isoform of tau is a more potent inhibitor of dynein binding to microtubules. We show that this isoform-specific effect is not due to steric interference of tau’s projection domains, but rather due to tau’s interactions with the motor at the microtubule surface. Nonetheless, we do observe a modest steric interference effect of tau away from the microtubule and discuss the potential implications of this for molecular motor structure. PMID:18373727

  20. Probing the Physical Structures of Dense Filaments

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  1. Filament-Level Modeling of Aramid-Based High-Performance Structural Materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-01

    is expected to be greatly affected by the specificities related to the polymer chemistry, polymer synthesis and fiber/ yarn /fabric fabrication...Derivation of the Materials Constitutive Relations for Carbon Nanotube Reinforced Poly-Vinyl-Ester-Epoxy Based Compos- ites, J. Mater. Sci., 2007, 42...of Covalent Functionalization of Carbon Nanotube Reinforcements on the Atomic- Level Mechanical Properties of Poly-vinyl-ester-epoxy, Appl. Surf. Sci

  2. Capping protein regulatory cycle driven by CARMIL and V-1 may promote actin network assembly at protruding edges.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujiwara, Ikuko; Remmert, Kirsten; Piszczek, Grzegorz; Hammer, John A

    2014-05-13

    Although capping protein (CP) terminates actin filament elongation, it promotes Arp2/3-dependent actin network assembly and accelerates actin-based motility both in vitro and in vivo. In vitro, capping protein Arp2/3 myosin I linker (CARMIL) antagonizes CP by reducing its affinity for the barbed end and by uncapping CP-capped filaments, whereas the protein V-1/myotrophin sequesters CP in an inactive complex. Previous work showed that CARMIL can readily retrieve CP from the CP:V-1 complex, thereby converting inactive CP into a version with moderate affinity for the barbed end. Here we further clarify the mechanism of this exchange reaction, and we demonstrate that the CP:CARMIL complex created by complex exchange slows the rate of barbed-end elongation by rapidly associating with, and dissociating from, the barbed end. Importantly, the cellular concentrations of V-1 and CP determined here argue that most CP is sequestered by V-1 at steady state in vivo. Finally, we show that CARMIL is recruited to the plasma membrane and only at cell edges undergoing active protrusion. Assuming that CARMIL is active only at this location, our data argue that a large pool of freely diffusing, inactive CP (CP:V-1) feeds, via CARMIL-driven complex exchange, the formation of weak-capping complexes (CP:CARMIL) at the plasma membrane of protruding edges. In vivo, therefore, CARMIL should promote Arp2/3-dependent actin network assembly at the leading edge by promoting barbed-end capping there.

  3. Effect of Flumorph on F-Actin Dynamics in the Potato Late Blight Pathogen Phytophthora infestans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hua, Chenlei; Kots, Kiki; Ketelaar, Tijs; Govers, Francine; Meijer, Harold J G

    2015-04-01

    Oomycetes are fungal-like pathogens that cause notorious diseases. Protecting crops against oomycetes requires regular spraying with chemicals, many with an unknown mode of action. In the 1990s, flumorph was identified as a novel crop protection agent. It was shown to inhibit the growth of oomycete pathogens including Phytophthora spp., presumably by targeting actin. We recently generated transgenic Phytophthora infestans strains that express Lifeact-enhanced green fluorescent protein (eGFP), which enabled us to monitor the actin cytoskeleton during hyphal growth. For analyzing effects of oomicides on the actin cytoskeleton in vivo, the P. infestans Lifeact-eGFP strain is an excellent tool. Here, we confirm that flumorph is an oomicide with growth inhibitory activity. Microscopic analyses showed that low flumorph concentrations provoked hyphal tip swellings accompanied by accumulation of actin plaques in the apex, a feature reminiscent of tips of nongrowing hyphae. At higher concentrations, swelling was more pronounced and accompanied by an increase in hyphal bursting events. However, in hyphae that remained intact, actin filaments were indistinguishable from those in nontreated, nongrowing hyphae. In contrast, in hyphae treated with the actin depolymerizing drug latrunculin B, no hyphal bursting was observed but the actin filaments were completely disrupted. This difference demonstrates that actin is not the primary target of flumorph.

  4. Phosphorylation of the cytoskeletal protein CAP1 controls its association with cofilin and actin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Guo-Lei; Zhang, Haitao; Wu, Huhehasi; Ghai, Pooja; Field, Jeffrey

    2014-12-01

    Cell signaling can control the dynamic balance between filamentous and monomeric actin by modulating actin regulatory proteins. One family of actin regulating proteins that controls actin dynamics comprises cyclase-associated proteins 1 and 2 (CAP1 and 2, respectively). However, cell signals that regulate CAPs remained unknown. We mapped phosphorylation sites on mouse CAP1 and found S307 and S309 to be regulatory sites. We further identified glycogen synthase kinase 3 as a kinase phosphorylating S309. The phosphomimetic mutant S307D/S309D lost binding to its partner cofilin and, when expressed in cells, caused accumulation of actin stress fibers similar to that in cells with reduced CAP expression. In contrast, the non-phosphorylatable S307A/S309A mutant showed drastically increased cofilin binding and reduced binding to actin. These results suggest that the phosphorylation serves to facilitate release of cofilin for a subsequent cycle of actin filament severing. Moreover, our results suggest that S307 and S309 function in tandem; neither the alterations in binding cofilin and/or actin, nor the defects in rescuing the phenotype of the enlarged cell size in CAP1 knockdown cells was observed in point mutants of either S307 or S309. In summary, we identify a novel regulatory mechanism of CAP1 through phosphorylation.

  5. Respiratory syncytial virus assembles into structured filamentous virion particles independently of host cytoskeleton and related proteins.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fyza Y Shaikh

    Full Text Available Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV is a single-stranded RNA virus that assembles into viral filaments at the cell surface. Virus assembly often depends on the ability of a virus to use host proteins to accomplish viral tasks. Since the fusion protein cytoplasmic tail (FCT is critical for viral filamentous assembly, we hypothesized that host proteins important for viral assembly may be recruited by the FCT. Using a yeast two-hybrid screen, we found that filamin A interacted with FCT, and mammalian cell experiments showed it localized to viral filaments but did not affect viral replication. Furthermore, we found that a number of actin-associated proteins also were excluded from viral filaments. Actin or tubulin cytoskeletal rearrangement was not necessary for F trafficking to the cell surface or for viral assembly into filaments, but was necessary for optimal viral replication and may be important for anchoring viral filaments. These findings suggest that RSV assembly into filaments occurs independently of actin polymerization and that viral proteins are the principal drivers for the mechanical tasks involved with formation of complex, structured RSV filaments at the host cell plasma membrane.

  6. In vivo imaging and characterization of actin microridges.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pui-ying Lam

    Full Text Available Actin microridges form labyrinth like patterns on superficial epithelial cells across animal species. This highly organized assembly has been implicated in mucus retention and in the mechanical structure of mucosal surfaces, however the mechanisms that regulate actin microridges remain largely unknown. Here we characterize the composition and dynamics of actin microridges on the surface of zebrafish larvae using live imaging. Microridges contain phospho-tyrosine, cortactin and VASP, but not focal adhesion kinase. Time-lapse imaging reveals dynamic changes in the length and branching of microridges in intact animals. Transient perturbation of the microridge pattern occurs before cell division with rapid re-assembly during and after cytokinesis. Microridge assembly is maintained with constitutive activation of Rho or inhibition of myosin II activity. However, expression of dominant negative RhoA or Rac alters microridge organization, with an increase in distance between microridges. Latrunculin A treatment and photoconversion experiments suggest that the F-actin filaments are actively treadmilling in microridges. Accordingly, inhibition of Arp2/3 or PI3K signaling impairs microridge structure and length. Taken together, actin microridges in zebrafish represent a tractable in vivo model to probe pattern formation and dissect Arp2/3-mediated actin dynamics in vivo.

  7. Formins: Actin nucleators that regulate cytoskeletal dynamics during spermatogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Nan; Mruk, Dolores D; Tang, Elizabeth I; Wong, Chris Kc; Lee, Will M; Silvestrini, Bruno; Cheng, C Yan

    2015-01-01

    Formins are a growing class of actin nucleation proteins that promote the polymerization of actin microfilaments, forming long stretches of actin microfilaments to confer actin filament bundling in mammalian cells. As such, microfilament bundles can be formed in specific cellular domains, in particular in motile mammalian cells, such as filopodia. Since ectoplasmic specialization (ES), a testis-specific adherens junction (AJ), at the Sertoli cell-cell and Sertoli-spermatid interface is constituted by arrays of actin microfilament bundles, it is likely that formins are playing a significant physiological role on the homeostasis of ES during the epithelial cycle of spermatogenesis. In this Commentary, we provide a timely discussion on formin 1 which was recently shown to be a crucial regulator of actin microfilaments at the ES in the rat testis (Li N et al. Endocrinology, 2015, in press; DOI: 10.1210/en.2015-1161, PMID:25901598). We also highlight research that is needed to unravel the functional significance of formins in spermatogenesis.

  8. act up controls actin polymerization to alter cell shape and restrict Hedgehog signaling in the Drosophila eye disc.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benlali, A; Draskovic, I; Hazelett, D J; Treisman, J E

    2000-04-28

    Cells in the morphogenetic furrow of the Drosophila eye disc undergo a striking shape change immediately prior to their neuronal differentiation. We have isolated mutations in a novel gene, act up (acu), that is required for this shape change. acu encodes a homolog of yeast cyclase-associated protein, which sequesters monomeric actin; we show that acu is required to prevent actin filament polymerization in the eye disc. In contrast, profilin promotes actin filament polymerization, acting epistatically to acu. However, both acu and profilin are required to prevent premature Hedgehog-induced photoreceptor differentiation ahead of the morphogenetic furrow. These findings suggest that dynamic changes in actin filaments alter cell shape to control the movement of signals that coordinate a wave of differentiation.

  9. The Role of Structural Dynamics of Actin in Class-Specific Myosin Motility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noguchi, Taro Q. P.; Morimatsu, Masatoshi; Iwane, Atsuko H.; Yanagida, Toshio; Uyeda, Taro Q. P.

    2015-01-01

    The structural dynamics of actin, including the tilting motion between the small and large domains, are essential for proper interactions with actin-binding proteins. Gly146 is situated at the hinge between the two domains, and we previously showed that a G146V mutation leads to severe motility defects in skeletal myosin but has no effect on motility of myosin V. The present study tested the hypothesis that G146V mutation impaired rotation between the two domains, leading to such functional defects. First, our study showed that depolymerization of G146V filaments was slower than that of wild-type filaments. This result is consistent with the distinction of structural states of G146V filaments from those of the wild type, considering the recent report that stabilization of actin filaments involves rotation of the two domains. Next, we measured intramolecular FRET efficiencies between two fluorophores in the two domains with or without skeletal muscle heavy meromyosin or the heavy meromyosin equivalent of myosin V in the presence of ATP. Single-molecule FRET measurements showed that the conformations of actin subunits of control and G146V actin filaments were different in the presence of skeletal muscle heavy meromyosin. This altered conformation of G146V subunits may lead to motility defects in myosin II. In contrast, distributions of FRET efficiencies of control and G146V subunits were similar in the presence of myosin V, consistent with the lack of motility defects in G146V actin with myosin V. The distribution of FRET efficiencies in the presence of myosin V was different from that in the presence of skeletal muscle heavy meromyosin, implying that the roles of actin conformation in myosin motility depend on the type of myosin. PMID:25945499

  10. The role of structural dynamics of actin in class-specific myosin motility.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Taro Q P Noguchi

    Full Text Available The structural dynamics of actin, including the tilting motion between the small and large domains, are essential for proper interactions with actin-binding proteins. Gly146 is situated at the hinge between the two domains, and we previously showed that a G146V mutation leads to severe motility defects in skeletal myosin but has no effect on motility of myosin V. The present study tested the hypothesis that G146V mutation impaired rotation between the two domains, leading to such functional defects. First, our study showed that depolymerization of G146V filaments was slower than that of wild-type filaments. This result is consistent with the distinction of structural states of G146V filaments from those of the wild type, considering the recent report that stabilization of actin filaments involves rotation of the two domains. Next, we measured intramolecular FRET efficiencies between two fluorophores in the two domains with or without skeletal muscle heavy meromyosin or the heavy meromyosin equivalent of myosin V in the presence of ATP. Single-molecule FRET measurements showed that the conformations of actin subunits of control and G146V actin filaments were different in the presence of skeletal muscle heavy meromyosin. This altered conformation of G146V subunits may lead to motility defects in myosin II. In contrast, distributions of FRET efficiencies of control and G146V subunits were similar in the presence of myosin V, consistent with the lack of motility defects in G146V actin with myosin V. The distribution of FRET efficiencies in the presence of myosin V was different from that in the presence of skeletal muscle heavy meromyosin, implying that the roles of actin conformation in myosin motility depend on the type of myosin.

  11. Solar Features - Prominences and Filaments - Filaments

    Data.gov (United States)

    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)

  12. mDia2 regulates actin and focal adhesion dynamics and organization in the lamella for efficient epithelial cell migration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gupton, Stephanie L; Eisenmann, Kathryn; Alberts, Arthur S; Waterman-Storer, Clare M

    2007-10-01

    Cell migration requires spatial and temporal regulation of filamentous actin (F-actin) dynamics. This regulation is achieved by distinct actin-associated proteins, which mediate polymerization, depolymerization, severing, contraction, bundling or engagement to the membrane. Mammalian Diaphanous-related (mDia) formins, which nucleate, processively elongate, and in some cases bundle actin filaments, have been extensively studied in vitro, but their function in the cell has been less well characterized. Here we study the role of mDia2 activity in the dynamic organization of F-actin in migrating epithelial cells. We find that mDia2 localizes in the lamella of migrating epithelial cells, where it is involved in the formation of a stable pool of cortical actin and in maintenance of polymerization-competent free filament barbed ends at focal adhesions. Specific inhibition of mDia2 alters focal adhesion turnover and reduces migration velocity. We suggest that the regulation of filament assembly dynamics at focal adhesions may be necessary for the formation of a stable pool of cortical lamella actin and the proper assembly and disassembly dynamics of focal adhesions, making mDia2 an important factor in epithelial cell migration.

  13. Ena/VASP Enabled is a highly processive actin polymerase tailored to self-assemble parallel-bundled F-actin networks with Fascin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winkelman, Jonathan D; Bilancia, Colleen G; Peifer, Mark; Kovar, David R

    2014-03-18

    Filopodia are exploratory finger-like projections composed of multiple long, straight, parallel-bundled actin filaments that protrude from the leading edge of migrating cells. Drosophila melanogaster Enabled (Ena) is a member of the Ena/vasodilator-stimulated phosphoprotein protein family, which facilitates the assembly of filopodial actin filaments that are bundled by Fascin. However, the mechanism by which Ena and Fascin promote the assembly of uniformly thick F-actin bundles that are capable of producing coordinated protrusive forces without buckling is not well understood. We used multicolor evanescent wave fluorescence microscopy imaging to follow individual Ena molecules on both single and Fascin-bundled F-actin in vitro. Individual Ena tetramers increase the elongation rate approximately two- to threefold and inhibit capping protein by remaining processively associated with the barbed end for an average of ∼10 s in solution, for ∼60 s when immobilized on a surface, and for ∼110 s when multiple Ena tetramers are clustered on a surface. Ena also can gather and simultaneously elongate multiple barbed ends. Collectively, these properties could facilitate the recruitment of Fascin and initiate filopodia formation. Remarkably, we found that Ena's actin-assembly properties are tunable on Fascin-bundled filaments, facilitating the formation of filopodia-like F-actin networks without tapered barbed ends. Ena-associated trailing barbed ends in Fascin-bundled actin filaments have approximately twofold more frequent and approximately fivefold longer processive runs, allowing them to catch up with leading barbed ends efficiently. Therefore, Fascin and Ena cooperate to extend and maintain robust filopodia of uniform thickness with aligned barbed ends by a unique mechanistic cycle.

  14. Physical principles of filamentous protein self-assembly kinetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michaels, Thomas C. T.; Liu, Lucie X.; Meisl, Georg; Knowles, Tuomas P. J.

    2017-04-01

    The polymerization of proteins and peptides into filamentous supramolecular structures is an elementary form of self-organization of key importance to the functioning biological systems, as in the case of actin biofilaments that compose the cellular cytoskeleton. Aberrant filamentous protein self-assembly, however, is associated with undesired effects and severe clinical disorders, such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases, which, at the molecular level, are associated with the formation of certain forms of filamentous protein aggregates known as amyloids. Moreover, due to their unique physicochemical properties, protein filaments are finding extensive applications as biomaterials for nanotechnology. With all these different factors at play, the field of filamentous protein self-assembly has experienced tremendous activity in recent years. A key question in this area has been to elucidate the microscopic mechanisms through which filamentous aggregates emerge from dispersed proteins with the goal of uncovering the underlying physical principles. With the latest developments in the mathematical modeling of protein aggregation kinetics as well as the improvement of the available experimental techniques it is now possible to tackle many of these complex systems and carry out detailed analyses of the underlying microscopic steps involved in protein filament formation. In this paper, we review some classical and modern kinetic theories of protein filament formation, highlighting their use as a general strategy for quantifying the molecular-level mechanisms and transition states involved in these processes.

  15. Hamiltonian Dynamics of Protein Filament Formation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michaels, Thomas C T; Cohen, Samuel I A; Vendruscolo, Michele; Dobson, Christopher M; Knowles, Tuomas P J

    2016-01-22

    We establish the Hamiltonian structure of the rate equations describing the formation of protein filaments. We then show that this formalism provides a unified view of the behavior of a range of biological self-assembling systems as diverse as actin, prions, and amyloidogenic polypeptides. We further demonstrate that the time-translation symmetry of the resulting Hamiltonian leads to previously unsuggested conservation laws that connect the number and mass concentrations of fibrils and allow linear growth phenomena to be equated with autocatalytic growth processes. We finally show how these results reveal simple rate laws that provide the basis for interpreting experimental data in terms of specific mechanisms controlling the proliferation of fibrils.

  16. Adhesive F-actin waves: a novel integrin-mediated adhesion complex coupled to ventral actin polymerization.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lindsay B Case

    Full Text Available At the leading lamellipodium of migrating cells, protrusion of an Arp2/3-nucleated actin network is coupled to formation of integrin-based adhesions, suggesting that Arp2/3-mediated actin polymerization and integrin-dependent adhesion may be mechanistically linked. Arp2/3 also mediates actin polymerization in structures distinct from the lamellipodium, in "ventral F-actin waves" that propagate as spots and wavefronts along the ventral plasma membrane. Here we show that integrins engage the extracellular matrix downstream of ventral F-actin waves in several mammalian cell lines as well as in primary mouse embryonic fibroblasts. These "adhesive F-actin waves" require a cycle of integrin engagement and disengagement to the extracellular matrix for their formation and propagation, and exhibit morphometry and a hierarchical assembly and disassembly mechanism distinct from other integrin-containing structures. After Arp2/3-mediated actin polymerization, zyxin and VASP are co-recruited to adhesive F-actin waves, followed by paxillin and vinculin, and finally talin and integrin. Adhesive F-actin waves thus represent a previously uncharacterized integrin-based adhesion complex associated with Arp2/3-mediated actin polymerization.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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

  18. Actin cap associated focal adhesions and their distinct role in cellular mechanosensing

    OpenAIRE

    2012-01-01

    The ability for cells to sense and adapt to different physical microenvironments plays a critical role in development, immune responses, and cancer metastasis. Here we identify a small subset of focal adhesions that terminate fibers in the actin cap, a highly ordered filamentous actin structure that is anchored to the top of the nucleus by the LINC complexes; these differ from conventional focal adhesions in morphology, subcellular organization, movements, turnover dynamics, and response to b...

  19. Electron Tomography of Cryofixed, Isometrically Contracting Insect Flight Muscle Reveals Novel Actin-Myosin Interactions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wu, Shenping; Liu, Jun; Reedy, Mary C.; Tregear, Richard T.; Winkler, Hanspeter; Franzini-Armstrong, Clara; Sasaki, Hiroyuki; Lucaveche, Carmen; Goldman, Yale E.; Reedy, Michael K.; Taylor, Kenneth A. (UPENN); (Duke); (MRCLMB); (FSU); (Jikei-Med)

    2010-10-22

    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{sup o}/12.9 nm. The lever arm azimuthal range of strong binding attachments has a highly skewed, 127{sup o} 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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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

  1. Drosophila Kelch functions with Cullin-3 to organize the ring canal actin cytoskeleton

    OpenAIRE

    Hudson, Andrew M.; Cooley, Lynn

    2010-01-01

    Drosophila melanogaster Kelch (KEL) is the founding member of a diverse protein family defined by a repeated sequence motif known as the KEL repeat (KREP). Several KREP proteins, including Drosophila KEL, bind filamentous actin (F-actin) and contribute to its organization. Recently, a subset of KREP proteins has been shown to function as substrate adaptor proteins for cullin-RING (really interesting new gene) ubiquitin E3 ligases. In this study, we demonstrate that association of Drosophila K...

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

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  4. DAAM is required for thin filament formation and Sarcomerogenesis during muscle development in Drosophila.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molnár, Imre; Migh, Ede; Szikora, Szilárd; Kalmár, Tibor; Végh, Attila G; Deák, Ferenc; Barkó, Szilvia; Bugyi, Beáta; Orfanos, Zacharias; Kovács, János; Juhász, Gábor; Váró, György; Nyitrai, Miklós; Sparrow, John; Mihály, József

    2014-02-01

    During muscle development, myosin and actin containing filaments assemble into the highly organized sarcomeric structure critical for muscle function. Although sarcomerogenesis clearly involves the de novo formation of actin filaments, this process remained poorly understood. Here we show that mouse and Drosophila members of the DAAM formin family are sarcomere-associated actin assembly factors enriched at the Z-disc and M-band. Analysis of dDAAM mutants revealed a pivotal role in myofibrillogenesis of larval somatic muscles, indirect flight muscles and the heart. We found that loss of dDAAM function results in multiple defects in sarcomere development including thin and thick filament disorganization, Z-disc and M-band formation, and a near complete absence of the myofibrillar lattice. Collectively, our data suggest that dDAAM is required for the initial assembly of thin filaments, and subsequently it promotes filament elongation by assembling short actin polymers that anneal to the pointed end of the growing filaments, and by antagonizing the capping protein Tropomodulin.

  5. DAAM is required for thin filament formation and Sarcomerogenesis during muscle development in Drosophila.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Imre Molnár

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available During muscle development, myosin and actin containing filaments assemble into the highly organized sarcomeric structure critical for muscle function. Although sarcomerogenesis clearly involves the de novo formation of actin filaments, this process remained poorly understood. Here we show that mouse and Drosophila members of the DAAM formin family are sarcomere-associated actin assembly factors enriched at the Z-disc and M-band. Analysis of dDAAM mutants revealed a pivotal role in myofibrillogenesis of larval somatic muscles, indirect flight muscles and the heart. We found that loss of dDAAM function results in multiple defects in sarcomere development including thin and thick filament disorganization, Z-disc and M-band formation, and a near complete absence of the myofibrillar lattice. Collectively, our data suggest that dDAAM is required for the initial assembly of thin filaments, and subsequently it promotes filament elongation by assembling short actin polymers that anneal to the pointed end of the growing filaments, and by antagonizing the capping protein Tropomodulin.

  6. Fused-filament 3D printing of drug products: Microstructure analysis and drug release characteristics of PVA-based caplets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goyanes, Alvaro; Kobayashi, Masanori; Martínez-Pacheco, Ramón; Gaisford, Simon; Basit, Abdul W

    2016-11-30

    Fused deposition modeling (FDM) 3-Dimensional (3D) printing is becoming an increasingly important technology in the pharmaceutical sciences, since it allows the manufacture of personalized oral dosage forms by deposition of thin layers of material. Here, a filament extruder was used to obtain filaments of polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) containing paracetamol or caffeine appropriate for 3D printing. The filaments were used to manufacture caplets for oral administration by FDM 3D printing, with the aim of evaluating the effect of the internal structure (micropore volume), drug loading and composition on drug dissolution behaviour. Micropore volume of the caplets was primarily determined by the presence of large pores due to gaps in the printed layers/net while printing, and the porosity of the caplets was 10 fold higher than the porosity of the extruded filament. Dynamic dissolution drug release tests on the caplets in biorelevant bicarbonate media revealed distinctive release profiles, which were dependent on drug solubility and drug loading. Porosity of the caplets did not help to predict the different drug release profiles. This study confirms the potential of 3D printing to fabricate caplets and helps to elucidate which factors influence drug release from this type of new dosage form.

  7. Collective alignment of polar filaments by molecular motors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ziebert, F; Vershinin, M; Gross, S P; Aranson, I S

    2009-04-01

    We study the alignment of polar biofilaments, such as microtubules and actin, subject to the action of multiple molecular motors attached simultaneously to more than one filament. Focusing on a paradigm model of only two filaments interacting with multiple motors, we were able to investigate in detail the alignment dynamics. While almost no alignment occurs in the case of a single motor, the filaments become rapidly aligned due to the collective action of the motors. Our analysis shows that the alignment time is governed by the number of bound motors and the magnitude of the motors' stepping fluctuations. We predict that the time scale of alignment is in the order of seconds, much faster than that reported for passive crosslink-induced bundling. In vitro experiments on the alignment of microtubules by multiple-motor covered beads are in qualitative agreement. We also discuss another mode of fast alignment of filaments, namely the cooperation between motors and passive crosslinks.

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

    KAUST Repository

    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.

  9. Directed actin assembly and motility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boujemaa-Paterski, Rajaa; Galland, Rémi; Suarez, Cristian; Guérin, Christophe; Théry, Manuel; Blanchoin, Laurent

    2014-01-01

    The actin cytoskeleton is a key component of the cellular architecture. However, understanding actin organization and dynamics in vivo is a complex challenge. Reconstitution of actin structures in vitro, in simplified media, allows one to pinpoint the cellular biochemical components and their molecular interactions underlying the architecture and dynamics of the actin network. Previously, little was known about the extent to which geometrical constraints influence the dynamic ultrastructure of these networks. Therefore, in order to study the balance between biochemical and geometrical control of complex actin organization, we used the innovative methodologies of UV and laser patterning to design a wide repertoire of nucleation geometries from which we assembled branched actin networks. Using these methods, we were able to reconstitute complex actin network organizations, closely related to cellular architecture, to precisely direct and control their 3D connections. This methodology mimics the actin networks encountered in cells and can serve in the fabrication of innovative bioinspired systems.

  10. Differences in G-actin containing bound ATP or ADP: the Mg2+-induced conformational change requires ATP.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frieden, C; Patane, K

    1985-07-16

    The role of adenosine 5'-triphosphate (ATP) in the Mg2+-induced conformational change of rabbit skeletal muscle G-actin has been investigated by comparing actin containing bound ADP with actin containing bound ATP. As previously described [Frieden, C. (1982) J. Biol. Chem. 257, 2882-2886], N-acetyl-N'-(5-sulfo-1-naphthyl)ethylenediamine-labeled G-actin containing ATP undergoes a time-dependent Mg2+-induced fluorescence change that reflects a conformational change in the actin. Addition of Mg2+ to labeled G-actin containing ADP gives no fluorescence change, suggesting that the conformational change does not occur. The fluorescence change can be restored on the addition of ATP. Examination of the time courses of these experiments suggests that ATP must replace ADP prior to the Mg2+-induced change. The Mg2+-induced polymerization of actin containing ADP is extraordinarily slow compared to that of actin containing ATP. The lack of the Mg2+-induced conformational change, which is an essential step in the Mg2+-induced polymerization, is probably the cause for the very slow polymerization of actin containing ADP. On the other hand, at 20 degrees C, at pH 8, and in 2 mM Mg2+, the elongation rate from the slow growing end of an actin filament, measured by using the protein brevin to block growth at the fast growing end, is only 4 times slower for actin containing ADP than for actin containing ATP.

  11. Filamentous Biopolymers on Surfaces: Atomic Force Microscopy Images Compared with Brownian Dynamics Simulation of Filament Deposition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mücke, Norbert; Klenin, Konstantin; Kirmse, Robert; Bussiek, Malte; Herrmann, Harald; Hafner, Mathias; Langowski, Jörg

    2009-01-01

    Nanomechanical properties of filamentous biopolymers, such as the persistence length, may be determined from two-dimensional images of molecules immobilized on surfaces. For a single filament in solution, two principal adsorption scenarios are possible. Both scenarios depend primarly on the interaction strength between the filament and the support: i) For interactions in the range of the thermal energy, the filament can freely equilibrate on the surface during adsorption; ii) For interactions much stronger than the thermal energy, the filament will be captured by the surface without having equilibrated. Such a ‘trapping’ mechanism leads to more condensed filament images and hence to a smaller value for the apparent persistence length. To understand the capture mechanism in more detail we have performed Brownian dynamics simulations of relatively short filaments by taking the two extreme scenarios into account. We then compared these ‘ideal’ adsorption scenarios with observed images of immobilized vimentin intermediate filaments on different surfaces. We found a good agreement between the contours of the deposited vimentin filaments on mica (‘ideal’ trapping) and on glass (‘ideal’ equilibrated) with our simulations. Based on these data, we have developed a strategy to reliably extract the persistence length of short worm-like chain fragments or network forming filaments with unknown polymer-surface interactions. PMID:19888472

  12. Filamentous biopolymers on surfaces: atomic force microscopy images compared with Brownian dynamics simulation of filament deposition.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Norbert Mücke

    Full Text Available Nanomechanical properties of filamentous biopolymers, such as the persistence length, may be determined from two-dimensional images of molecules immobilized on surfaces. For a single filament in solution, two principal adsorption scenarios are possible. Both scenarios depend primarily on the interaction strength between the filament and the support: i For interactions in the range of the thermal energy, the filament can freely equilibrate on the surface during adsorption; ii For interactions much stronger than the thermal energy, the filament will be captured by the surface without having equilibrated. Such a 'trapping' mechanism leads to more condensed filament images and hence to a smaller value for the apparent persistence length. To understand the capture mechanism in more detail we have performed Brownian dynamics simulations of relatively short filaments by taking the two extreme scenarios into account. We then compared these 'ideal' adsorption scenarios with observed images of immobilized vimentin intermediate filaments on different surfaces. We found a good agreement between the contours of the deposited vimentin filaments on mica ('ideal' trapping and on glass ('ideal' equilibrated with our simulations. Based on these data, we have developed a strategy to reliably extract the persistence length of short worm-like chain fragments or network forming filaments with unknown polymer-surface interactions.

  13. ADP-ribosylation of actins in fibroblasts and myofibroblasts by botulinum C2 toxin: Influence on microfilament morphology and migratory behavior

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rønnov-Jessen, Lone; Petersen, Ole William

    1996-01-01

    ., Petersen, O. W. J. Cell Biol. 1996, 134, 67-80). In the present study we have expanded on the functional significance of actin isotypes in fibroblasts from the opposite point of view, namely filamentous nonmuscle actin. Nonmuscle actins in fibroblasts and myofibroblasts were ADP-ribosylated by Clostridium...... botulinum C2 toxin. The substrate for C2 toxin is globular actin, which upon ribosylation cannot incorporate into microfilaments. The pattern of actin ADP-ribosylation in (myo)fibroblasts in the presence of [32P]NAD was analyzed by isoelectric focusing, fluorography and immunoblotting. The influence of C2...

  14. Cofilin phosphorylation is elevated after F-actin disassembly induced by Rac1 depletion

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Liu, Linna; Li, Jing; Zhang, Liwang

    2015-01-01

    that actin filaments disassembled. In the epidermis of mice in which Rac1 was knocked out only in keratinocytes, cofilin phosphorylation was aberrantly elevated, corresponding to repression of the phosphatase slingshot1 (SSH1). These effects were independent of the signaling pathways for p21-activated kinase....../LIM kinase (Pak/LIMK), protein kinase C, or protein kinase D or generation of reactive oxygen species. Similarly, when actin polymerization was specifically inhibited or Rac1 was knocked down, cofilin phosphorylation was enhanced and SSH1 was repressed. Repression of SSH1 partially blocked actin...

  15. Structure and stability of self-assembled actin-lysozyme complexes in salty water.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanders, Lori K; Guáqueta, Camilo; Angelini, Thomas E; Lee, Jae-Wook; Slimmer, Scott C; Luijten, Erik; Wong, Gerard C L

    2005-09-02

    Interactions between actin, an anionic polyelectrolyte, and lysozyme, a cationic globular protein, have been examined using a combination of synchrotron small-angle x-ray scattering and molecular dynamics simulations. Lysozyme initially bridges pairs of actin filaments, which relax into hexagonally coordinated columnar complexes comprised of actin held together by incommensurate one-dimensional close-packed arrays of lysozyme macroions. These complexes are found to be stable even in the presence of significant concentrations of monovalent salt, which is quantitatively explained from a redistribution of salt between the condensed and the aqueous phases.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deng, Su; Bothe, Ingo; Baylies, Mary K

    2015-08-01

    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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  19. The role of actin networks in cellular mechanosensing

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  20. Human congenital myopathy actin mutants cause myopathy and alter Z-disc structure in Drosophila flight muscle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sevdali, Maria; Kumar, Vikash; Peckham, Michelle; Sparrow, John

    2013-03-01

    Over 190 mutations in the human skeletal muscle α-actin gene, ACTA1 cause congenital actin myopathies. We transgenically expressed six different mutant actins, G15R, I136M, D154N, V163L, V163M and D292V in Drosophila indirect flight muscles and investigated their effects in flies that express one wild type and one mutant actin copy. All the flies were flightless, and the IFMs showed incomplete Z-discs, disorganised actin filaments and 'zebra bodies'. No differences in levels of sarcomeric protein expression were observed, but tropomodulin staining was somewhat disrupted in D164N, V163L, G15R and V163M heterozygotes. A single copy of D292V mutant actin rescued the hypercontractile phenotypes caused by TnI and TnT mutants, suggesting that the D292V mutation interferes with thin filament regulation. Our results show that expression of actin mutations homologous to those in humans in the indirect flight muscles of Drosophila disrupt sarcomere organisation, with somewhat similar phenotypes to those observed in humans. Using Drosophila to study actin mutations may help aid our understanding of congential myopathies caused by actin mutations.

  1. Semiflexible filamentous composites

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huisman, E.M.; Heussinger, C.; Storm, C.; Barkema, G.T.

    2010-01-01

    Inspired by the ubiquity of composite filamentous networks in nature, we investigate models of biopolymer networks that consist of interconnected floppy and stiff filaments. Numerical simulations carried out in three dimensions allow us to explore the microscopic partitioning of stresses and strains

  2. Proteomics of Filamentous Fungi

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Passel, van M.W.J.; Schaap, P.J.; Graaff, de L.H.

    2013-01-01

    Filamentous fungi, such as Aspergillus niger and Aspergillus oryzae traditionally have had an important role in providing enzymes and enzyme cocktails that are used in food industry. In recent years the genome sequences of many filamentous fungi have become available. This combined with technologica

  3. Tungsten Filament Fire

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruiz, Michael J.; Perkins, James

    2016-01-01

    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…

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nuria Domínguez-Iturza

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available 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.

  5. Tailor-made ezrin actin binding domain to probe its interaction with actin in-vitro.

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    Rohini Shrivastava

    Full Text Available Ezrin, a member of the ERM (Ezrin/Radixin/Moesin protein family, is an Actin-plasma membrane linker protein mediating cellular integrity and function. In-vivo study of such interactions is a complex task due to the presence of a large number of endogenous binding partners for both Ezrin and Actin. Further, C-terminal actin binding capacity of the full length Ezrin is naturally shielded by its N-terminal, and only rendered active in the presence of Phosphatidylinositol bisphosphate (PIP2 or phosphorylation at the C-terminal threonine. Here, we demonstrate a strategy for the design, expression and purification of constructs, combining the Ezrin C-terminal actin binding domain, with functional elements such as fusion tags and fluorescence tags to facilitate purification and fluorescence microscopy based studies. For the first time, internal His tag was employed for purification of Ezrin actin binding domain based on in-silico modeling. The functionality (Ezrin-actin interaction of these constructs was successfully demonstrated by using Total Internal Reflection Fluorescence Microscopy. This design can be extended to other members of the ERM family as well.

  6. F-actin-based extensions of the head cyst cell adhere to the maturing spermatids to maintain them in a tight bundle and prevent their premature release in Drosophila testis

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    Ray Krishanu

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In Drosophila, all the 64 clonally derived spermatocytes differentiate in syncytium inside two somatic-origin cyst cells. They elongate to form slender spermatids, which are individualized and then released into the seminal vesicle. During individualization, differentiating spermatids are organized in a tight bundle inside the cyst, which is expected to play an important role in sperm selection. However, actual significance of this process and its underlying mechanism are unclear. Results We show that dynamic F-actin-based processes extend from the head cyst cell at the start of individualization, filling the interstitial space at the rostral ends of the maturing spermatid bundle. In addition to actin, these structures contained lamin, beta-catenin, dynamin, myosin VI and several other filopodial components. Further, pharmacological and genetic analyses showed that cytoskeletal stability and dynamin function are essential for their maintenance. Disruption of these F-actin based processes was associated with spermatid bundle disassembly and premature sperm release inside the testis. Conclusion Altogether, our data suggests that the head cyst cell adheres to the maturing spermatid heads through F-actin-based extensions, thus maintaining them in a tight bundle. This is likely to regulate mature sperm release into the seminal vesicle. Overall, this process bears resemblance to mammalian spermiation.

  7. Actinic cheilitis: A review

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    Elangovan Somasundaram

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Actinic cheilitis (AC is a chronic inflammatory disorder of the lips that is caused by prolonged exposure to sunlight in susceptible individuals. It affects the vermilion region of the lower lip almost exclusively. UV-B rays with a wavelength of 290-320 nm are held responsible for the sunlight-induced damage. The exact mechanism of the development of AC is unclear. It is considered to be potentially malignant.

  8. Srv2/CAP is required for polarized actin cable assembly and patch internalization during clathrin-mediated endocytosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toshima, Junko Y; Horikomi, Chika; Okada, Asuka; Hatori, Makiko N; Nagano, Makoto; Masuda, Atsushi; Yamamoto, Wataru; Siekhaus, Daria Elisabeth; Toshima, Jiro

    2016-01-15

    The dynamic assembly and disassembly of actin filaments is essential for the formation and transport of vesicles during endocytosis. In yeast, two types of actin structures, namely cortical patches and cytoplasmic cables, play a direct role in endocytosis, but how their interaction is regulated remains unclear. Here, we show that Srv2/CAP, an evolutionarily conserved actin regulator, is required for efficient endocytosis owing to its role in the formation of the actin patches that aid initial vesicle invagination and of the actin cables that these move along. Deletion of the SRV2 gene resulted in the appearance of aberrant fragmented actin cables that frequently moved past actin patches, the sites of endocytosis. We find that the C-terminal CARP domain of Srv2p is vitally important for the proper assembly of actin patches and cables; we also demonstrate that the N-terminal helical folded domain of Srv2 is required for its localization to actin patches, specifically to the ADP-actin rich region through an interaction with cofilin. These results demonstrate the in vivo roles of Srv2p in the regulation of the actin cytoskeleton during clathrin-mediated endocytosis.

  9. Lifeact-mEGFP reveals a dynamic apical F-actin network in tip growing plant cells.

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    Luis Vidali

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Actin is essential for tip growth in plants. However, imaging actin in live plant cells has heretofore presented challenges. In previous studies, fluorescent probes derived from actin-binding proteins often alter growth, cause actin bundling and fail to resolve actin microfilaments. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In this report we use Lifeact-mEGFP, an actin probe that does not affect the dynamics of actin, to visualize actin in the moss Physcomitrella patens and pollen tubes from Lilium formosanum and Nicotiana tobaccum. Lifeact-mEGFP robustly labels actin microfilaments, particularly in the apex, in both moss protonemata and pollen tubes. Lifeact-mEGFP also labels filamentous actin structures in other moss cell types, including cells of the gametophore. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Lifeact-mEGFP, when expressed at optimal levels does not alter moss protonemal or pollen tube growth. We suggest that Lifeact-mEGFP represents an exciting new versatile probe for further studies of actin's role in tip growing plant cells.

  10. Increased actin polymerization and stabilization interferes with neuronal function and survival in the AMPKγ mutant Loechrig.

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    Mandy Cook

    Full Text Available loechrig (loe mutant flies are characterized by progressive neuronal degeneration, behavioral deficits, and early death. The mutation is due to a P-element insertion in the gene for the γ-subunit of the trimeric AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK complex, whereby the insertion affects only one of several alternative transcripts encoding a unique neuronal isoform. AMPK is a cellular energy sensor that regulates a plethora of signaling pathways, including cholesterol and isoprenoid synthesis via its downstream target hydroxy-methylglutaryl (HMG-CoA reductase. We recently showed that loe interferes with isoprenoid synthesis and increases the prenylation and thereby activation of RhoA. During development, RhoA plays an important role in neuronal outgrowth by activating a signaling cascade that regulates actin dynamics. Here we show that the effect of loe/AMPKγ on RhoA prenylation leads to a hyperactivation of this signaling pathway, causing increased phosphorylation of the actin depolymerizating factor cofilin and accumulation of filamentous actin. Furthermore, our results show that the resulting cytoskeletal changes in loe interfere with neuronal growth and disrupt axonal integrity. Surprisingly, these phenotypes were enhanced by expressing the Slingshot (SSH phosphatase, which during development promotes actin depolymerization by dephosphorylating cofilin. However, our studies suggest that in the adult SSH promotes actin polymerization, supporting in vitro studies using human SSH1 that suggested that SSH can also stabilize and bundle filamentous actin. Together with the observed increase in SSH levels in the loe mutant, our experiments suggest that in mature neurons SSH may function as a stabilization factor for filamentous actin instead of promoting actin depolymerization.

  11. Cytosolic SYT/SS18 isoforms are actin-associated proteins that function in matrix-specific adhesion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jaehong Kim

    Full Text Available SYT (SYnovial sarcoma Translocated gene or SS18 is widely produced as two isoforms, SYT/L and SYT/S, that are thought to function in the nucleus as transcriptional coactivators. Using isoform-specific antibodies, we detected a sizable pool of SYT isoforms in the cytosol where the proteins were organized into filamentous arrays. Actin and actin-associated proteins co-immunoprecipitated with SYT isoforms, which also co-sedimented and co-localized with the actin cytoskeleton in cultured cells and tissues. The association of SYT with actin bundles was extensive yet stopped short of the distal ends at focal adhesions. Disruption of the actin cytoskeleton also led to a breakdown of the filamentous organization of SYT isoforms in the cytosol. RNAi ablation of SYT/L alone or both isoforms markedly impaired formation of stress fibers and focal adhesions but did not affect formation of cortical actin bundles. Furthermore, ablation of SYT led to markedly impaired adhesion and spreading on fibronectin and laminin-111 but not on collagen types I or IV. These findings indicate that cytoplasmic SYT isoforms interact with actin filaments and function in the ability cells to bind and react to specific extracellular matrices.

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

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    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.

  13. Regulation of the actin cytoskeleton by an interaction of IQGAP related protein GAPA with filamin and cortexillin I.

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    Subhanjan Mondal

    Full Text Available Filamin and Cortexillin are F-actin crosslinking proteins in Dictyostelium discoideum allowing actin filaments to form three-dimensional networks. GAPA, an IQGAP related protein, is required for cytokinesis and localizes to the cleavage furrow during cytokinesis. Here we describe a novel interaction with Filamin which is required for cytokinesis and regulation of the F-actin content. The interaction occurs through the actin binding domain of Filamin and the GRD domain of GAPA. A similar interaction takes place with Cortexillin I. We further report that Filamin associates with Rac1a implying that filamin might act as a scaffold for small GTPases. Filamin and activated Rac associate with GAPA to regulate actin remodelling. Overexpression of filamin and GAPA in the various strains suggests that GAPA regulates the actin cytoskeleton through interaction with Filamin and that it controls cytokinesis through association with Filamin and Cortexillin.

  14. Capu and Spire Assemble a Cytoplasmic Actin Mesh that Maintains Microtubule Organization in the Drosophila Oocyte

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dahlgaard, Katja; Raposo, Alexandre A.S.F.; Niccoli, Teresa; St Johnston, Daniel

    2007-01-01

    Summary Mutants in the actin nucleators Cappuccino and Spire disrupt the polarized microtubule network in the Drosophila oocyte that defines the anterior-posterior axis, suggesting that microtubule organization depends on actin. Here, we show that Cappuccino and Spire organize an isotropic mesh of actin filaments in the oocyte cytoplasm. capu and spire mutants lack this mesh, whereas overexpressed truncated Cappuccino stabilizes the mesh in the presence of Latrunculin A and partially rescues spire mutants. Spire overexpression cannot rescue capu mutants, but prevents actin mesh disassembly at stage 10B and blocks late cytoplasmic streaming. We also show that the actin mesh regulates microtubules indirectly, by inhibiting kinesin-dependent cytoplasmic flows. Thus, the Capu pathway controls alternative states of the oocyte cytoplasm: when active, it assembles an actin mesh that suppresses kinesin motility to maintain a polarized microtubule cytoskeleton. When inactive, unrestrained kinesin movement generates flows that wash microtubules to the cortex. PMID:17925229

  15. The Nf-actin gene is an important factor for food-cup formation and cytotoxicity of pathogenic Naegleria fowleri.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sohn, Hae-Jin; Kim, Jong-Hyun; Shin, Myeong-Heon; Song, Kyoung-Ju; Shin, Ho-Joon

    2010-03-01

    Naegleria fowleri destroys target cells by trogocytosis, a phagocytosis mechanism, and a process of piecemeal ingestion of target cells by food-cups. Phagocytosis is an actin-dependent process that involves polymerization of monomeric G-actin into filamentous F-actin. However, despite the numerous studies concerning phagocytosis, its role in the N. fowleri food-cup formation related with trogocytosis has been poorly reported. In this study, we cloned and characterized an Nf-actin gene to elucidate the role of Nf-actin gene in N. fowleri pathogenesis. The Nf-actin gene is composed of 1,128-bp and produced a 54.1-kDa recombinant protein (Nf-actin). The sequence identity was 82% with nonpathogenic Naegleria gruberi but has no sequence identity with other mammals or human actin gene. Anti-Nf-actin polyclonal antibody was produced in BALB/c mice immunized with recombinant Nf-actin. The Nf-actin was localized on the cytoplasm, pseudopodia, and especially, food-cup structure (amoebastome) in N. fowleri trophozoites using immunofluorescence assay. When N. fowleri co-cultured with Chinese hamster ovary cells, Nf-actin was observed to localize around on phagocytic food-cups. We also observed that N. fowleri treated with cytochalasin D as actin polymerization inhibitor or transfected with antisense oligomer of Nf-actin gene had shown the reduced ability of food-cup formation and in vitro cytotoxicity. Finally, it suggests that Nf-actin plays an important role in phagocytic activity of pathogenic N. fowleri.

  16. Differences in the ionic interaction of actin with the motor domains of nonmuscle and muscle myosin II.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Dijk, J; Furch, M; Derancourt, J; Batra, R; Knetsch, M L; Manstein, D J; Chaussepied, P

    1999-03-01

    Changes in the actin-myosin interface are thought to play an important role in microfilament-linked cellular movements. In this study, we compared the actin binding properties of the motor domain of Dictyostelium discoideum (M765) and rabbit skeletal muscle myosin subfragment-1 (S1). The Dictyostelium motor domain resembles S1(A2) (S1 carrying the A2 light chain) in its interaction with G-actin. Similar to S1(A2), none of the Dictyostelium motor domain constructs induced G-actin polymerization. The affinity of monomeric actin (G-actin) was 20-fold lower for M765 than for S1(A2) but increasing the number of positive charges in the loop 2 region of the D. discoideum motor domain (residues 613-623) resulted in equivalent affinities of G-actin for M765 and for S1. Proteolytic cleavage and cross-linking approaches were used to show that M765, like S1, interacts via the loop 2 region with filamentous actin (F-actin). For both types of myosin, F-actin prevents trypsin cleavage in the loop 2 region and F-actin segment 1-28 can be cross-linked to loop 2 residues by a carbodiimide-induced reaction. In contrast with the S1, loop residues 559-565 of D. discoideum myosin was not cross-linked to F-actin, probably due to the lower number of positive charges. These results confirm the importance of the loop 2 region of myosin for the interaction with both G-actin and F-actin, regardless of the source of myosin. The differences observed in the way in which M765 and S1 interact with actin may be linked to more general differences in the structure of the actomyosin interface of muscle and nonmuscle myosins.

  17. Rearrangement of actin cytoskeleton mediates invasion of Lotus japonicus roots by Mesorhizobium loti.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yokota, Keisuke; Fukai, Eigo; Madsen, Lene H; Jurkiewicz, Anna; Rueda, Paloma; Radutoiu, Simona; Held, Mark; Hossain, Md Shakhawat; Szczyglowski, Krzysztof; Morieri, Giulia; Oldroyd, Giles E D; Downie, J Allan; Nielsen, Mette W; Rusek, Anna Maria; Sato, Shusei; Tabata, Satoshi; James, Euan K; Oyaizu, Hiroshi; Sandal, Niels; Stougaard, Jens

    2009-01-01

    Infection thread-dependent invasion of legume roots by rhizobia leads to internalization of bacteria into the plant cells, which is one of the salient features of root nodule symbiosis. We found that two genes, Nap1 (for Nck-associated protein 1) and Pir1 (for 121F-specific p53 inducible RNA), involved in actin rearrangements were essential for infection thread formation and colonization of Lotus japonicus roots by its natural microsymbiont, Mesorhizobium loti. nap1 and pir1 mutants developed an excess of uncolonized nodule primordia, indicating that these two genes were not essential for the initiation of nodule organogenesis per se. However, both the formation and subsequent progression of infection threads into the root cortex were significantly impaired in these mutants. We demonstrate that these infection defects were due to disturbed actin cytoskeleton organization. Short root hairs of the mutants had mostly transverse or web-like actin filaments, while bundles of actin filaments in wild-type root hairs were predominantly longitudinal. Corroborating these observations, temporal and spatial differences in actin filament organization between wild-type and mutant root hairs were also observed after Nod factor treatment, while calcium influx and spiking appeared unperturbed. Together with various effects on plant growth and seed formation, the nap1 and pir1 alleles also conferred a characteristic distorted trichome phenotype, suggesting a more general role for Nap1 and Pir1 in processes establishing cell polarity or polar growth in L. japonicus.

  18. Confirmation of filament dissolution behavior by analyzing electrical field effect during reset process in oxide-based RRAM

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pan, Chih-Hung; Chang, Ting-Chang; Tsai, Tsung-Ming; Chang, Kuan-Chang; Chu, Tian-Jian; Lin, Wen-Yan; Chen, Min-Chen; Sze, Simon M.

    2016-09-01

    In this letter, we demonstrate completely different characteristics with different operating modes and analyze the electrical field effect to confirm the filament dissolution behavior. The device exhibited a larger memory window when using a single voltage sweep method during reset process rather than the traditional double sweep method. The phenomenon was verified by using fast I-V measurement to simulate the two operating methods. A better high resistance state (HRS) will be obtained with a very short rising time pulse, but quite notably, lower power consumption was needed. We proposed the electrical field effect to explain the phenomenon and demonstrate distribution by COMSOL simulation.

  19. Actin capping protein alpha maintains vestigial-expressing cells within the Drosophila wing disc epithelium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janody, Florence; Treisman, Jessica E

    2006-09-01

    Tissue patterning must be translated into morphogenesis through cell shape changes mediated by remodeling of the actin cytoskeleton. We have found that Capping protein alpha (Cpa) and Capping protein beta (Cpb), which prevent extension of the barbed ends of actin filaments, are specifically required in the wing blade primordium of the Drosophila wing disc. cpa or cpb mutant cells in this region, but not in the remainder of the wing disc, are extruded from the epithelium and undergo apoptosis. Excessive actin filament polymerization is not sufficient to explain this phenotype, as loss of Cofilin or Cyclase-associated protein does not cause cell extrusion or death. Misexpression of Vestigial, the transcription factor that specifies the wing blade, both increases cpa transcription and makes cells dependent on cpa for their maintenance in the epithelium. Our results suggest that Vestigial specifies the cytoskeletal changes that lead to morphogenesis of the adult wing.

  20. Mutations in smooth muscle alpha-actin (ACTA2) lead to thoracic aortic aneurysms and dissections.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Dong-Chuan; Pannu, Hariyadarshi; Tran-Fadulu, Van; Papke, Christina L; Yu, Robert K; Avidan, Nili; Bourgeois, Scott; Estrera, Anthony L; Safi, Hazim J; Sparks, Elizabeth; Amor, David; Ades, Lesley; McConnell, Vivienne; Willoughby, Colin E; Abuelo, Dianne; Willing, Marcia; Lewis, Richard A; Kim, Dong H; Scherer, Steve; Tung, Poyee P; Ahn, Chul; Buja, L Maximilian; Raman, C S; Shete, Sanjay S; Milewicz, Dianna M

    2007-12-01

    The major function of vascular smooth muscle cells (SMCs) is contraction to regulate blood pressure and flow. SMC contractile force requires cyclic interactions between SMC alpha-actin (encoded by ACTA2) and the beta-myosin heavy chain (encoded by MYH11). Here we show that missense mutations in ACTA2 are responsible for 14% of inherited ascending thoracic aortic aneurysms and dissections (TAAD). Structural analyses and immunofluorescence of actin filaments in SMCs derived from individuals heterozygous for ACTA2 mutations illustrate that these mutations interfere with actin filament assembly and are predicted to decrease SMC contraction. Aortic tissues from affected individuals showed aortic medial degeneration, focal areas of medial SMC hyperplasia and disarray, and stenotic arteries in the vasa vasorum due to medial SMC proliferation. These data, along with the previously reported MYH11 mutations causing familial TAAD, indicate the importance of SMC contraction in maintaining the structural integrity of the ascending aorta.

  1. WIP modulates dendritic spine actin cytoskeleton by transcriptional control of lipid metabolic enzymes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franco-Villanueva, Ana; Fernández-López, Estefanía; Gabandé-Rodríguez, Enrique; Bañón-Rodríguez, Inmaculada; Esteban, Jose Antonio; Antón, Inés M; Ledesma, María Dolores

    2014-08-15

    We identify Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein (WASP)-interacting protein (WIP) as a novel component of neuronal synapses whose absence increases dendritic spine size and filamentous actin levels in an N-WASP/Arp2/3-independent, RhoA/ROCK/profilinIIa-dependent manner. These effects depend on the reduction of membrane sphingomyelin (SM) due to transcriptional upregulation of neutral sphingomyelinase (NSM) through active RhoA; this enhances RhoA binding to the membrane, raft partitioning and activation in steady state but prevents RhoA changes in response to stimulus. Inhibition of NSM or SM addition reverses RhoA, filamentous actin and functional anomalies in synapses lacking WIP. Our findings characterize WIP as a link between membrane lipid composition and actin cytoskeleton at dendritic spines. They also contribute to explain cognitive deficits shared by individuals bearing mutations in the region assigned to the gene encoding for WIP.

  2. Star forming filaments in warm dark models

    CERN Document Server

    Gao, Liang; Springel, Volker

    2014-01-01

    We performed a hydrodynamical cosmological simulation of the formation of a Milky Way-like galaxy in a warm dark matter (WDM) cosmology. Smooth and dense filaments, several co-moving mega parsec long, form generically above z 2 in this model. Atomic line cooling allows gas in the centres of these filaments to cool to the base of the cooling function, resulting in a very striking pattern of extended Lyman-limit systems (LLSs). Observations of the correlation function of LLSs might hence provide useful limits on the nature of the dark matter. We argue that the self-shielding of filaments may lead to a thermal instability resulting in star formation. We implement a sub-grid model for this, and find that filaments rather than haloes dominate star formation until z 6. Reionisation decreases the gas density in filaments, and the more usual star formation in haloes dominates below z 6, although star formation in filaments continues until z=2. Fifteen per cent of the stars of the z=0 galaxy formed in filaments. At hi...

  3. Femtosecond Laser Filamentation

    CERN Document Server

    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 ...

  4. Blistering of viscoelastic filaments

    CERN Document Server

    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.

  5. A requirement for polymerized actin in DNA double-strand break repair.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrin, Christi; McDonald, Darin; Attwood, Kathleen M; Rodrigue, Amélie; Ghosh, Sunita; Mirzayans, Razmik; Masson, Jean-Yves; Dellaire, Graham; Hendzel, Michael J

    2012-07-01

    Nuclear actin is involved in several nuclear processes from chromatin remodeling to transcription. Here we examined the requirement for actin polymerization in DNA double-strand break repair. Double-strand breaks are considered the most dangerous type of DNA lesion. Double-strand break repair consists of a complex set of events that are tightly regulated. Failure at any step can have catastrophic consequences such as genomic instability, oncogenesis or cell death. Many proteins involved in this repair process have been identified and their roles characterized. We discovered that some DNA double-strand break repair factors are capable of associating with polymeric actin in vitro and specifically, that purified Ku70/80 interacts with polymerized actin under these conditions. We find that the disruption of polymeric actin inhibits DNA double strand break repair both in vitro and in vivo. Introduction of nuclear targeted mutant actin that cannot polymerize, or the depolymerization of endogenous actin filaments by the addition of cytochalasin D, alters the retention of Ku80 at sites of DNA damage in live cells. Our results suggest that polymeric actin is required for proper DNA double-strand break repair and may function through the stabilization of the Ku heterodimer at the DNA damage site.

  6. Drosophila Fascin is a novel downstream target of prostaglandin signaling during actin remodeling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Groen, Christopher M; Spracklen, Andrew J; Fagan, Tiffany N; Tootle, Tina L

    2012-12-01

    Although prostaglandins (PGs)-lipid signals produced downstream of cyclooxygenase (COX) enzymes-regulate actin cytoskeletal dynamics, their mechanisms of action are unknown. We previously established Drosophila oogenesis, in particular nurse cell dumping, as a new model to determine how PGs regulate actin remodeling. PGs, and thus the Drosophila COX-like enzyme Pxt, are required for both the parallel actin filament bundle formation and the cortical actin strengthening required for dumping. Here we provide the first link between Fascin (Drosophila Singed, Sn), an actin-bundling protein, and PGs. Loss of either pxt or fascin results in similar actin defects. Fascin interacts, both pharmacologically and genetically, with PGs, as reduced Fascin levels enhance the effects of COX inhibition and synergize with reduced Pxt levels to cause both parallel bundle and cortical actin defects. Conversely, overexpression of Fascin in the germline suppresses the effects of COX inhibition and genetic loss of Pxt. These data lead to the conclusion that PGs regulate Fascin to control actin remodeling. This novel interaction has implications beyond Drosophila, as both PGs and Fascin-1, in mammalian systems, contribute to cancer cell migration and invasion.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  8. Rheological characterization of the bundling transition in F-actin solutions induced by methylcellulose.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simone Köhler

    Full Text Available In many in vitro experiments Brownian motion hampers quantitative data analysis. Therefore, additives are widely used to increase the solvent viscosity. For this purpose, methylcellulose (MC has been proven highly effective as already small concentrations can significantly slow down diffusive processes. Beside this advantage, it has already been reported that high MC concentrations can alter the microstructure of polymer solutions such as filamentous actin. However, it remains to be shown to what extent the mechanical properties of a composite actin/MC gel depend on the MC concentration. In particular, significant alterations might occur even if the microstructure seems unaffected. Indeed, we find that the viscoelastic response of entangled F-actin solutions depends sensitively on the amount of MC added. At concentrations higher than 0.2% (w/v MC, actin filaments are reorganized into bundles which drastically changes the viscoelastic response. At small MC concentrations the impact of MC is more subtle: the two constituents, actin and MC, contribute in an additive way to the mechanical response of the composite material. As a consequence, the effect of methylcellulose on actin solutions has to be considered very carefully when MC is used in biochemical experiments.

  9. Direct interaction between two actin nucleators is required in Drosophila oogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quinlan, Margot E

    2013-11-01

    Controlled actin assembly is crucial to a wide variety of cellular processes, including polarity establishment during early development. The recently discovered actin mesh, a structure that traverses the Drosophila oocyte during mid-oogenesis, is essential for proper establishment of the major body axes. Genetic experiments indicate that at least two proteins, Spire (Spir) and Cappuccino (Capu), are required to build this mesh. The spire and cappuccino genetic loci were first identified as maternal effect genes in Drosophila. Mutation in either locus results in the same phenotypes, including absence of the mesh, linking them functionally. Both proteins nucleate actin filaments. Spir and Capu also interact directly with each other in vitro, suggesting a novel synergistic mode of regulating actin. In order to understand how and why proteins with similar biochemical activity would be required in the same biological pathway, genetic experiments were designed to test whether a direct interaction between Spir and Capu is required during oogenesis. Indeed, data in this study indicate that Spir and Capu must interact directly with one another and then separate to function properly. Furthermore, these actin regulators are controlled by a combination of mechanisms, including interaction with one another, functional inhibition and regulation of their protein levels. Finally, this work demonstrates for the first time in a multicellular organism that the ability of a formin to assemble actin filaments is required for a specific structure.

  10. The spatial response of nonlinear strain propagation in response to actively driven microspheres through entangled actin networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Falzone, Tobias; Blair, Savanna; Robertson-Anderson, Rae

    2015-03-01

    The semiflexible biopolymer actin, a ubiquitous component of nearly all biological organisms, plays an important role in many mechanically-driven processes such as muscle contraction, cancer invasion and cell motility. As such, entangled actin networks, which possess unique and complex viscoelastic properties, have been the subject of much theoretical and experimental work. However, due to this viscoelastic complexity, much is still unknown regarding the correlation of the applied stress on actin networks to the induced filament strain at the molecular and micro scale. Here, we use simultaneous optical trapping and fluorescence microscopy to characterize the link between applied microscopic forces and strain propagation as a function of strain rate and concentration. Specifically, we track fiduciary markers on entangled actin filaments before, during and after actively driving embedded microspheres through the network. These measurements provide much needed insight into the molecular-level dynamics connecting stress and strain in semiflexible polymer networks.

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

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    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.

  12. The Nebivolol action on vascular tone is dependent on actin cytoskeleton polymerization and Rho-A activity into ECs and SMCs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kadi, A; de Isla, N; Moby, V; Lacolley, P; Labrude, P; Stoltz, J F; Menu, P

    2014-01-01

    Nitric oxide is implicated in the target action of Nebivolol, a selective β1 adrenoceptor blocker used in hypertension treatment. As the Nitric Oxide (NO) production and the actin cytoskeleton are linked, the aim of this work was to study the involvement of actin cytoskeleton on mechanism of action of Nebivolol in cultured endothelial cells. We studied the effect of Nebivolol (200 μM) on actin filaments remodeling and its impact on NO production and eNOS activation. Results showed that Nebivolol perturbs actin filaments polymerization, increases NO production and eNOS activity between 30 minutes and 1 h. Stabilization of actin filaments with phalloïdine (50 μM) abolishes Nebivolol effects on eNOS activation and NO production. Furthermore, Rho-kinase activity decreased during the first hour of Nebivolol treatment, then increased after 3 h, while actin filaments repolymerized, eNOS activation and NO production decreased. In SMCs, Nebivolol induced a decrease in the Rho-kinase activity from 1 h until 24 h of incubation. In conclusion, we suggest that Nebivolol induced NO production in Endothelial Cells (ECs) via complementary actions between actin cytoskeleton remodeling inducing eNOS activation and Rho-kinase implication. The effect of Nebivolol on ECs occurs during the first hour, this effect on SMCs seems to be maintained until 24 h, explaining persisted action of Nebivolol observed in vivo.

  13. Withaferin a alters intermediate filament organization, cell shape and behavior.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Boris Grin

    Full Text Available Withaferin A (WFA is a steroidal lactone present in Withania somnifera which has been shown in vitro to bind to the intermediate filament protein, vimentin. Based upon its affinity for vimentin, it has been proposed that WFA can be used as an anti-tumor agent to target metastatic cells which up-regulate vimentin expression. We show that WFA treatment of human fibroblasts rapidly reorganizes vimentin intermediate filaments (VIF into a perinuclear aggregate. This reorganization is dose dependent and is accompanied by a change in cell shape, decreased motility and an increase in vimentin phosphorylation at serine-38. Furthermore, vimentin lacking cysteine-328, the proposed WFA binding site, remains sensitive to WFA demonstrating that this site is not required for its cellular effects. Using analytical ultracentrifugation, viscometry, electron microscopy and sedimentation assays we show that WFA has no effect on VIF assembly in vitro. Furthermore, WFA is not specific for vimentin as it disrupts the cellular organization and induces perinuclear aggregates of several other IF networks comprised of peripherin, neurofilament-triplet protein, and keratin. In cells co-expressing keratin IF and VIF, the former are significantly less sensitive to WFA with respect to inducing perinuclear aggregates. The organization of microtubules and actin/microfilaments is also affected by WFA. Microtubules become wavier and sparser and the number of stress fibers appears to increase. Following 24 hrs of exposure to doses of WFA that alter VIF organization and motility, cells undergo apoptosis. Lower doses of the drug do not kill cells but cause them to senesce. In light of our findings that WFA affects multiple IF systems, which are expressed in many tissues of the body, caution is warranted in its use as an anti-cancer agent, since it may have debilitating organism-wide effects.

  14. Specific Myosins Control Actin Organization, Cell Morphology, and Migration in Prostate Cancer Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katarzyna A. Makowska

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available We investigated the myosin expression profile in prostate cancer cell lines and found that Myo1b, Myo9b, Myo10, and Myo18a were expressed at higher levels in cells with high metastatic potential. Moreover, Myo1b and Myo10 were expressed at higher levels in metastatic tumors. Using an siRNA-based approach, we found that knockdown of each myosin resulted in distinct phenotypes. Myo10 knockdown ablated filopodia and decreased 2D migration speed. Myo18a knockdown increased circumferential non-muscle myosin 2A-associated actin filament arrays in the lamella and reduced directional persistence of 2D migration. Myo9b knockdown increased stress fiber formation, decreased 2D migration speed, and increased directional persistence. Conversely, Myo1b knockdown increased numbers of stress fibers but did not affect 2D migration. In all cases, the cell spread area was increased and 3D migration potential was decreased. Therefore, myosins not only act as molecular motors but also directly influence actin organization and cell morphology, which can contribute to the metastatic phenotype.

  15. Picosecond laser filamentation in air

    CERN Document Server

    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.

  16. Picosecond laser filamentation in air

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmitt-Sody, Andreas; Kurz, Heiko G.; Bergé, Luc; Skupin, Stefan; Polynkin, Pavel

    2016-09-01

    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 to 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 has been paramount in femtosecond laser filamentation, holds for picosecond pulses. Furthermore, the temporal pulse distortions in the picosecond regime are limited and the pulse fluence is also clamped. In focused propagation geometry, a unique feature of picosecond filamentation is the production of a broad, fully ionized air channel, continuous both longitudinally and transversely, which may be instrumental for many applications including laser-guided electrical breakdown of air, channeling microwave beams and air lasing.

  17. Identification of Actin-Binding Proteins from Maize Pollen

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    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.

  18. Severe congenital actin related myopathy with myofibrillar myopathy features.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Selcen, Duygu

    2015-06-01

    Mutations in ACTA1 have been associated with different pathologic findings including nemaline myopathy, intranuclear rod myopathy, actin myopathy, cap myopathy, congenital fiber type disproportion, and core myopathy. Myofibrillar myopathies are morphologically distinct but genetically heterogeneous muscular dystrophies arising from mutations in Z-disk related proteins. We report a 26-month-old boy with significantly delayed motor development requiring mechanical ventilation and tube-feeding since birth. The muscle biopsy displayed typical features of myofibrillar myopathy with abnormal expression of multiple proteins. Whole exome sequencing revealed two-amino-acid duplication in ACTA1. In cell culture system, mutant actin was expressed at ~11% of wild-type, and mutant actin formed pleomorphic cytoplasmic aggregates whereas wild-type actin appeared in filamentous structures. We conclude that mutations in ACTA1 can cause pathologic features consistent with myofibrillar myopathy, and mutations in ACTA1 should be considered in patients with severe congenital hypotonia associated with muscle weakness and features of myofibrillar myopathy.

  19. Ring closure in actin polymers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinha, Supurna; Chattopadhyay, Sebanti

    2017-03-01

    We present an analysis for the ring closure probability of semiflexible polymers within the pure bend Worm Like Chain (WLC) model. The ring closure probability predicted from our analysis can be tested against fluorescent actin cyclization experiments. We also discuss the effect of ring closure on bend angle fluctuations in actin polymers.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  1. Bacterial actin and tubulin homologs in cell growth and division.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Busiek, Kimberly K; Margolin, William

    2015-03-16

    In contrast to the elaborate cytoskeletal machines harbored by eukaryotic cells, such as mitotic spindles, cytoskeletal structures detectable by typical negative stain electron microscopy are generally absent from bacterial cells. As a result, for decades it was thought that bacteria lacked cytoskeletal machines. Revolutions in genomics and fluorescence microscopy have confirmed the existence not only of smaller-scale cytoskeletal structures in bacteria, but also of widespread functional homologs of eukaryotic cytoskeletal proteins. The presence of actin, tubulin, and intermediate filament homologs in these relatively simple cells suggests that primitive cytoskeletons first arose in bacteria. In bacteria such as Escherichia coli, homologs of tubulin and actin directly interact with each other and are crucial for coordinating cell growth and division. The function and direct interactions between these proteins will be the focus of this review.

  2. Semiflexible biopolymers: Microrheology and single filament condensation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schnurr, Bernhard

    Polymers and their elementary subunits, called monomers, come in an immense variety of structures and sizes, and are of great importance for their material properties as well as a multitude of biological functions. The emphasis here is on semiflexible polymers, which are identified by their intermediate degree of stiffness. Their individual as well as their collective properties when assembled into entangled networks is a topic of great interest to polymer physics, materials science, and biology. Some of the most important semiflexible polymers are biopolymers, with such prominent examples as DNA, F-actin, and microtubules. Their functions range from their use as structural elements in the cytoskeleton of most plant and animal cells, to their role as transport tracks for molecular motors, and the storage of genetic information in their linear sequence. The two parts of this experimental and theoretical thesis address single filament aspects as well as network properties of solutions of semiflexible polymers. In the first part, we describe an optical technique for measuring the bulk properties of soft materials at the local scale. We apply it to a solution of entangled, filamentous actin, a particularly difficult material to characterize with conventional techniques. Beyond a description of measurements and apparatus, we also discuss, from a theoretical point of view, the interpretation and fundamental limitations of this and other microrheological techniques. In the second part, we describe the condensation dynamics of a single, semiflexible filament, induced by changing solvent conditions. A biologically important example of this phenomenon is the condensation of DNA into toroidal structures, which occurs, for instance, in viral capsids. Our observations of a molecular simulation motivate an unexpected pathway of collapse via a series of metastable intermediates we call ``racquet'' states. The analysis of the conformational energies of these structures in the

  3. Microrheology and micromechanics of actin-coated membranes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourdieu, Laurent

    2002-03-01

    To study the interaction between cytoskeletal filaments and the plasma membrane, we designed composite membranes obtained by self-assembly of