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Sample records for sarcomeric actin filaments

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

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    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.

  2. Sarcomeric Pattern Formation by Actin Cluster Coalescence

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    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

  3. Sarcomeric pattern formation by actin cluster coalescence.

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    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.

  4. 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

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

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    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.

  6. 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...

  7. 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 ...

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

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    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

  9. 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.

  10. Disorder profile of nebulin encodes a vernierlike position sensor for the sliding thin and thick filaments of the skeletal muscle sarcomere.

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    Wu, Ming-Chya; Forbes, Jeffrey G; Wang, Kuan

    2016-06-01

    Nebulin is an about 1μm long intrinsically disordered scaffold for the thin filaments of skeletal muscle sarcomere. It is a multifunctional elastic protein that wraps around actin filament, stabilizes thin filaments, and regulates Ca-dependent actomyosin interactions. This study investigates whether the disorder profile of nebulin might encode guidelines for thin and thick filament interactions in the sarcomere of the skeletal muscle. The question was addressed computationally by analyzing the predicted disorder profile of human nebulin (6669 residues, ∼200 actin-binding repeats) by pondr and the periodicity of the A-band stripes (reflecting the locations of myosin-associated proteins) in the electron micrographs of the sarcomere. Using the detrended fluctuation analysis, a scale factor for the A-band stripe image data with respect to the nebulin disorder profile was determined to make the thin and thick filaments aligned to have maximum correlation. The empirical mode decomposition method was then applied to identify hidden periodicities in both the nebulin disorder profile and the rescaled A-band data. The decomposition reveals three characteristic length scales (45 nm, 100 nm, and 200 nm) that are relevant for correlational analysis. The dynamical cross-correlation analyses with moving windows at various sarcomere lengths depict a vernierlike design for both periodicities, thus enabling nebulin to sense position and fine tune sarcomere overlap. This shows that the disorder profile of scaffolding proteins may encode a guideline for cellular architecture.

  11. Disorder profile of nebulin encodes a vernierlike position sensor for the sliding thin and thick filaments of the skeletal muscle sarcomere

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    Wu, Ming-Chya; Forbes, Jeffrey G.; Wang, Kuan

    2016-06-01

    Nebulin is an about 1 μ m long intrinsically disordered scaffold for the thin filaments of skeletal muscle sarcomere. It is a multifunctional elastic protein that wraps around actin filament, stabilizes thin filaments, and regulates Ca-dependent actomyosin interactions. This study investigates whether the disorder profile of nebulin might encode guidelines for thin and thick filament interactions in the sarcomere of the skeletal muscle. The question was addressed computationally by analyzing the predicted disorder profile of human nebulin (6669 residues, ˜200 actin-binding repeats) by pondr and the periodicity of the A-band stripes (reflecting the locations of myosin-associated proteins) in the electron micrographs of the sarcomere. Using the detrended fluctuation analysis, a scale factor for the A-band stripe image data with respect to the nebulin disorder profile was determined to make the thin and thick filaments aligned to have maximum correlation. The empirical mode decomposition method was then applied to identify hidden periodicities in both the nebulin disorder profile and the rescaled A-band data. The decomposition reveals three characteristic length scales (45 nm, 100 nm, and 200 nm) that are relevant for correlational analysis. The dynamical cross-correlation analyses with moving windows at various sarcomere lengths depict a vernierlike design for both periodicities, thus enabling nebulin to sense position and fine tune sarcomere overlap. This shows that the disorder profile of scaffolding proteins may encode a guideline for cellular architecture.

  12. 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.

  13. Mechanical properties of branched actin filaments

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    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...

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. Geometrical and mechanical properties control actin filament organization.

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    Gaëlle Letort

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available The different actin structures governing eukaryotic cell shape and movement are not only determined by the properties of the actin filaments and associated proteins, but also by geometrical constraints. We recently demonstrated that limiting nucleation to specific regions was sufficient to obtain actin networks with different organization. To further investigate how spatially constrained actin nucleation determines the emergent actin organization, we performed detailed simulations of the actin filament system using Cytosim. We first calibrated the steric interaction between filaments, by matching, in simulations and experiments, the bundled actin organization observed with a rectangular bar of nucleating factor. We then studied the overall organization of actin filaments generated by more complex pattern geometries used experimentally. We found that the fraction of parallel versus antiparallel bundles is determined by the mechanical properties of actin filament or bundles and the efficiency of nucleation. Thus nucleation geometry, actin filaments local interactions, bundle rigidity, and nucleation efficiency are the key parameters controlling the emergent actin architecture. We finally simulated more complex nucleation patterns and performed the corresponding experiments to confirm the predictive capabilities of the model.

  19. 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.

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

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    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.

  1. 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.

  2. Histones bundle F-actin filaments and affect actin structure.

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    Blotnick, Edna; Sol, Asaf; Muhlrad, Andras

    2017-01-01

    Histones are small polycationic proteins complexed with DNA located in the cell nucleus. Upon apoptosis they are secreted from the cells and react with extracellular polyanionic compounds. Actin which is a polyanionic protein, is also secreted from necrotic cells and interacts with histones. We showed that both histone mixture (histone type III) and the recombinant H2A histone bundles F-actin, increases the viscosity of the F-actin containing solution and polymerizes G-actin. The histone-actin bundles are relatively insensitive to increase of ionic strength, unlike other polycation, histatin, lysozyme, spermine and LL-37 induced F-actin bundles. The histone-actin bundles dissociate completely only in the presence of 300-400 mM NaCl. DNA, which competes with F-actin for histones, disassembles histone induced actin bundles. DNase1, which depolymerizes F- to G-actin, actively unbundles the H2A histone induced but slightly affects the histone mixture induced actin bundles. Cofilin decreases the amount of F-actin sedimented by low speed centrifugation, increases light scattering and viscosity of F-actin-histone mixture containing solutions and forms star like superstructures by copolymerizing G-actin with H2A histone. The results indicate that histones are tightly attached to F-actin by strong electrostatic and hydrophobic forces. Since both histones and F-actin are present in the sputum of patients with cystic fibrosis, therefore, the formation of the stable histone-actin bundles can contribute to the pathology of this disease by increasing the viscosity of the sputum. The actin-histone interaction in the nucleus might affect gene expression.

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

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    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.

  4. 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.

  5. Mechanical heterogeneity favors fragmentation of strained actin filaments.

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    De La Cruz, Enrique M; Martiel, Jean-Louis; Blanchoin, Laurent

    2015-05-05

    We present a general model of actin filament deformation and fragmentation in response to compressive forces. The elastic free energy density along filaments is determined by their shape and mechanical properties, which were modeled in terms of bending, twisting, and twist-bend coupling elasticities. The elastic energy stored in filament deformation (i.e., strain) tilts the fragmentation-annealing reaction free-energy profile to favor fragmentation. The energy gradient introduces a local shear force that accelerates filament intersubunit bond rupture. The severing protein, cofilin, renders filaments more compliant in bending and twisting. As a result, filaments that are partially decorated with cofilin are mechanically heterogeneous (i.e., nonuniform) and display asymmetric shape deformations and energy profiles distinct from mechanically homogenous (i.e., uniform), bare actin, or saturated cofilactin filaments. The local buckling strain depends on the relative size of the compliant segment as well as the bending and twisting rigidities of flanking regions. Filaments with a single bare/cofilin-decorated boundary localize energy and force adjacent to the boundary, within the compliant cofilactin segment. Filaments with small cofilin clusters were predicted to fragment within the compliant cofilactin rather than at boundaries. Neglecting contributions from twist-bend coupling elasticity underestimates the energy density and gradients along filaments, and thus the net effects of filament strain to fragmentation. Spatial confinement causes compliant cofilactin segments and filaments to adopt higher deformation modes and store more elastic energy, thereby promoting fragmentation. The theory and simulations presented here establish a quantitative relationship between actin filament fragmentation thermodynamics and elasticity, and reveal how local discontinuities in filament mechanical properties introduced by regulatory proteins can modulate both the severing efficiency

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  12. Actin Nanobodies Uncover the Mystery of Actin Filament Dynamics in Toxoplasma gondii.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tardieux, Isabelle

    2017-08-01

    While the intracellular parasite Toxoplasma relies on a divergent actomyosin motor to support unique speeds in directional movement, the dynamics and architecture of parasite actin filaments remain a much-discussed issue. Using actin chromobodies, Periz et al. started to unveil how networks of dynamic F-actin connect Toxoplasma progeny and expand in the replicative vacuole. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  14. Myosin and Actin Filaments in Muscle: Structures and Interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Squire, John M; Paul, Danielle M; Morris, Edward P

    2017-01-01

    In the last decade, improvements in electron microscopy and image processing have permitted significantly higher resolutions to be achieved (sometimes <1 nm) when studying isolated actin and myosin filaments. In the case of actin filaments the changing structure when troponin binds calcium ions can be followed using electron microscopy and single particle analysis to reveal what happens on each of the seven non-equivalent pseudo-repeats of the tropomyosin α-helical coiled-coil. In the case of the known family of myosin filaments not only are the myosin head arrangements under relaxing conditions being defined, but the latest analysis, also using single particle methods, is starting to reveal the way that the α-helical coiled-coil myosin rods are packed to give the filament backbones.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

    2012-01-01

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

  19. 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.

  20. 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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  4. Hand-Held Model of a Sarcomere to Illustrate the Sliding Filament Mechanism in Muscle Contraction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jittivadhna, Karnyupha; Ruenwongsa, Pintip; Panijpan, Bhinyo

    2009-01-01

    From our teaching of the contractile unit of the striated muscle, we have found limitations in using textbook illustrations of sarcomere structure and its related dynamic molecular physiological details. A hand-held model of a striated muscle sarcomere made from common items has thus been made by us to enhance students' understanding of the…

  5. Hand-Held Model of a Sarcomere to Illustrate the Sliding Filament Mechanism in Muscle Contraction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jittivadhna, Karnyupha; Ruenwongsa, Pintip; Panijpan, Bhinyo

    2009-01-01

    From our teaching of the contractile unit of the striated muscle, we have found limitations in using textbook illustrations of sarcomere structure and its related dynamic molecular physiological details. A hand-held model of a striated muscle sarcomere made from common items has thus been made by us to enhance students' understanding of the…

  6. 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.

  7. 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....

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. Disassembly of actin filaments by botulinum C2 toxin and actin-filament-disrupting agents induces assembly of microtubules in human leukaemia cell lines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uematsu, Yosuke; Kogo, Yasusi; Ohishi, Iwao

    2007-03-01

    C(2) toxin produced by Clostridium botulinum types C and D ADP-ribosylates actin monomers and inactivates their polymerization activities. The disassembly of actin filaments by C(2) toxin induces a polarization of cultured human leukaemia cell lines. The polarization induced by C(2) toxin was temperature dependent and was prevented by nocodazole, a microtubule-disrupting agent, whereas it was promoted by paclitaxel, a microtubule-stabilizing agent. The fluorescence staining of polarized cells indicated an increase in microtubule assembly accompanying disassembly of actin filaments. Furthermore, several actin-filament-disrupting agents, other than C(2) toxin, also induced microtubule assembly and cell polarization, irrespective of their different mechanisms of action. The effects induced by some of the agents, which have lower binding affinities for actin, were reversible in response to the re-assembly of actin filaments. Thus the disassembly of actin filaments by C(2) toxin and actin-filament-disrupting agents induces assembly of microtubules followed by polarization of human leukaemia cell lines, indicating that the assembly/disassembly equilibrium of actin filaments influences the dynamics of microtubules, which control cell morphology and, in turn, diverse cellular processes.

  13. 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.

  14. Multiscale modeling and mechanics of filamentous actin cytoskeleton.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. Actin-interacting Protein 1 Promotes Disassembly of Actin-depolymerizing Factor/Cofilin-bound Actin Filaments in a pH-dependent Manner.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nomura, Kazumi; Hayakawa, Kimihide; Tatsumi, Hitoshi; Ono, Shoichiro

    2016-03-04

    Actin-interacting protein 1 (AIP1) is a conserved WD repeat protein that promotes disassembly of actin filaments when actin-depolymerizing factor (ADF)/cofilin is present. Although AIP1 is known to be essential for a number of cellular events involving dynamic rearrangement of the actin cytoskeleton, the regulatory mechanism of the function of AIP1 is unknown. In this study, we report that two AIP1 isoforms from the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, known as UNC-78 and AIPL-1, are pH-sensitive in enhancement of actin filament disassembly. Both AIP1 isoforms only weakly enhance disassembly of ADF/cofilin-bound actin filaments at an acidic pH but show stronger disassembly activity at neutral and basic pH values. However, a severing-defective mutant of UNC-78 shows pH-insensitive binding to ADF/cofilin-decorated actin filaments, suggesting that the process of filament severing or disassembly, but not filament binding, is pH-dependent. His-60 of AIP1 is located near the predicted binding surface for the ADF/cofilin-actin complex, and an H60K mutation of AIP1 partially impairs its pH sensitivity, suggesting that His-60 is involved in the pH sensor for AIP1. These biochemical results suggest that pH-dependent changes in AIP1 activity might be a novel regulatory mechanism of actin filament dynamics. © 2016 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  19. Modeling of the motion of the actin filament on the myosin motility assays

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Yuan; Shelley, Mike

    2007-11-01

    In motility assays, cytoskeletal actin filaments (actin filaments) glide over a surface coated with motor proteins, and the different modes of motion provide a simple measure of the force exerted by the motor proteins (Bourdieu, 1995). Motivated by these experiments, we consider the actin filament as a slender, elastic filament immersed in Stokesian flow, driven by a tangential forcing that mimics the force by the motor proteins. We find qualitative agreement on several points between our analysis and simulations and experimental observations. Furthermore, we study the correlation between filament transport and the characteristics of motion with the spatial pattern of motor protein density.

  20. 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...

  1. Biochemical Activities of the Wiskott-Aldrich Syndrome Homology Region 2 Domains of Sarcomere Length Short (SALS) Protein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tóth, Mónika Ágnes; Majoros, Andrea Kinga; Vig, Andrea Teréz; Migh, Ede; Nyitrai, Miklós; Mihály, József; Bugyi, Beáta

    2016-01-01

    Drosophila melanogaster sarcomere length short (SALS) is a recently identified Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein homology 2 (WH2) domain protein involved in skeletal muscle thin filament regulation. SALS was shown to be important for the establishment of the proper length and organization of sarcomeric actin filaments. Here, we present the first detailed characterization of the biochemical activities of the tandem WH2 domains of SALS (SALS-WH2). Our results revealed that SALS-WH2 binds both monomeric and filamentous actin and shifts the monomer-filament equilibrium toward the monomeric actin. In addition, SALS-WH2 can bind to but fails to depolymerize phalloidin- or jasplakinolide-bound actin filaments. These interactions endow SALS-WH2 with the following two major activities in the regulation of actin dynamics: SALS-WH2 sequesters actin monomers into non-polymerizable complexes and enhances actin filament disassembly by severing, which is modulated by tropomyosin. We also show that profilin does not influence the activities of the WH2 domains of SALS in actin dynamics. In conclusion, the tandem WH2 domains of SALS are multifunctional regulators of actin dynamics. Our findings suggest that the activities of the WH2 domains do not reconstitute the presumed biological function of the full-length protein. Consequently, the interactions of the WH2 domains of SALS with actin must be tuned in the cellular context by other modules of the protein and/or sarcomeric components for its proper functioning.

  2. Tropomodulins: pointed-end capping proteins that regulate actin filament architecture in diverse cell types

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamashiro, Sawako; Gokhin, David S.; Kimura, Sumiko; Nowak, Roberta B.; Fowler, Velia M.

    2012-01-01

    Tropomodulins are a family of four proteins (Tmods 1–4) that cap the pointed ends of actin filaments in actin cytoskeletal structures in a developmentally regulated and tissue-specific manner. Unique among capping proteins, Tmods also bind tropomyosins (TMs), which greatly enhance the actin filament pointed-end capping activity of Tmods. Tmods are defined by a tropomyosin (TM)-regulated/Pointed-End Actin Capping (TM-Cap) domain in their unstructured N-terminal portion, followed by a compact, folded Leucine-Rich Repeat/Pointed-End Actin Capping (LRR-Cap) domain. By inhibiting actin monomer association and dissociation from pointed ends, Tmods regulate regulate actin dynamics and turnover, stabilizing actin filament lengths and cytoskeletal architecture. In this review, we summarize the genes, structural features, molecular and biochemical properties, actin regulatory mechanisms, expression patterns, and cell and tissue functions of Tmods. By understanding Tmods’ functions in the context of their molecular structure, actin regulation, binding partners, and related variants (leiomodins 1–3), we can draw broad conclusions that can explain the diverse morphological and functional phenotypes that arise from Tmod perturbation experiments in vitro and in vivo. Tmod-based stabilization and organization of intracellular actin filament networks provide key insights into how the emergent properties of the actin cytoskeleton drive tissue morphogenesis and physiology. PMID:22488942

  3. 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

  4. 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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  6. 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

  7. 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...

  8. Severe protein aggregate myopathy in a knockout mouse model points to an essential role of cofilin2 in sarcomeric actin exchange and muscle maintenance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gurniak, Christine B; Chevessier, Frédéric; Jokwitz, Melanie; Jönsson, Friederike; Perlas, Emerald; Richter, Hendrik; Matern, Gabi; Boyl, Pietro Pilo; Chaponnier, Christine; Fürst, Dieter; Schröder, Rolf; Witke, Walter

    2014-01-01

    Mutations in the human actin depolymerizing factor cofilin2 result in an autosomal dominant form of nemaline myopathy. Here, we report on the targeted ablation of murine cofilin2, which leads to a severe skeletal muscle specific phenotype within the first two weeks after birth. Apart from skeletal muscle, cofilin2 is also expressed in heart and CNS, however the pathology was restricted to skeletal muscle. The two close family members of cofilin2 - ADF and cofilin1 - were co-expressed in muscle, but unable to compensate for the loss of cofilin2. While primary myofibril assembly and muscle development were unaffected in cofilin2 mutant mice, progressive muscle degeneration was observed between postnatal days 3 and 7. Muscle pathology was characterized by sarcoplasmic protein aggregates, fiber size disproportion, mitochondrial abnormalities and internal nuclei. The observed muscle pathology differed from nemaline myopathy, but showed combined features of actin-associated myopathy and myofibrillar myopathy. In cofilin2 mutant mice, the postnatal expression pattern and turnover of sarcomeric α-actin isoforms were altered. Levels of smooth muscle α-actin were increased and remained high in developing muscles, suggesting that cofilin2 plays a crucial role during the exchange of α-actin isoforms during the early postnatal remodeling of the sarcomere.

  9. 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...

  10. Barrier role of actin filaments in regulated mucin secretion from airway goblet cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ehre, Camille; Rossi, Andrea H; Abdullah, Lubna H; De Pestel, Kathleen; Hill, Sandra; Olsen, John C; Davis, C William

    2005-01-01

    Airway goblet cells secrete mucin onto mucosal surfaces under the regulation of an apical, phospholipase C/G(q)-coupled P2Y(2) receptor. We tested whether cortical actin filaments negatively regulate exocytosis in goblet cells by forming a barrier between secretory granules and plasma membrane docking sites as postulated for other secretory cells. Immunostaining of human lung tissues and SPOC1 cells (an epithelial, mucin-secreting cell line) revealed an apical distribution of beta- and gamma-actin in ciliated and goblet cells. In goblet cells, actin appeared as a prominent subplasmalemmal sheet lying between granules and the apical membrane, and it disappeared from SPOC1 cells activated by purinergic agonist. Disruption of actin filaments with latrunculin A stimulated SPOC1 cell mucin secretion under basal and agonist-activated conditions, whereas stabilization with jasplakinolide or overexpression of beta- or gamma-actin conjugated to yellow fluorescent protein (YFP) inhibited secretion. Myristoylated alanine-rich C kinase substrate, a PKC-activated actin-plasma membrane tethering protein, was phosphorylated after agonist stimulation, suggesting a translocation to the cytosol. Scinderin (or adseverin), a Ca(2+)-activated actin filament severing and capping protein was cloned from human airway and SPOC1 cells, and synthetic peptides corresponding to its actin-binding domains inhibited mucin secretion. We conclude that actin filaments negatively regulate mucin secretion basally in airway goblet cells and are dynamically remodeled in agonist-stimulated cells to promote exocytosis.

  11. Minimally Invasive Principles and Technology to Measure Dynamic Skeletal Muscle Sarcomere Length

    OpenAIRE

    Young, Kevin William

    2016-01-01

    Skeletal muscle force production results from interaction between actin and myosin protein filaments in repeating units called sarcomeres. Sarcomere force is transmitted through the basement membrane via protein complexes to a network of connective tissue. Connective tissues transmit force to bone. Typically, muscles are characterized in vitro but this may be insufficient because stresses produced in isolated fibers or muscle bundles differ from whole muscle dynamics. Furthermore, comparisons...

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. Effect of Actin Filament on Deformation-Induced Ca2+ Response in Osteoblast-Like Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adachi, Taiji; Murai, Takayuki; Hoshiai, Sodai; Tomita, Yoshihiro

    Under the influence of mechanical environment, bone structure is formed and maintained by adaptive remodeling that involves osteoclastic resorption and osteoblastic formation. In the mechanotransduction system in osteoblasts, it is believed that intracellular calcium plays a fundamental role and cytoskeletal actin filament is a crucial component for the signal transduction process. To clarify the role of actin filament in deformation-induced Ca2+ signaling, osteoblast-like cells (MC3T3-E1) with different actin filament densities controlled by cytochalasin D were subjected to tensile strain in vitro. The change in intracellular Ca2+ concentration labeled by fluo-3 was observed using a confocal laser-scanning microscope. As a result, the disruption of the actin filament was found to significantly suppress the deformation-induced Ca2+ response that was regulated according to the degree of actin filament organization. This result indicates that the actin filament is indispensable for the quantitative regulation of Ca2+ signaling in response to a mechanical stimulus in osteoblasts.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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...

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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...

  9. 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.

  10. Biochemistry of Drebrin and Its Binding to Actin Filaments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishikawa, Ryoki

    2017-01-01

    Drebrin is an actin-binding protein mainly expressed in developing neurons and dendritic spine in mature neurons. To understand the functions of drebrin in vivo, we must understand its molecular properties. In this chapter, I will focus on the purification and characterization of drebrin in vitro. Drebrin binds to F-actin with a stoichiometry of 1:5~6 with a K d of 1~3 × 10(-7) M and strongly inhibits the binding of other actin-binding proteins such as tropomyosin, caldesmon, fascin, α-actinin, and cofilin. It also inhibits the activities of myosin-II and myosin-V. These results are discussed in terms of the possible roles of drebrin in the stability, dynamics, and organizations of actin structures in neuronal cells.

  11. The availability of filament ends modulates actin stochastic dynamics in live plant cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Jiejie; Staiger, Benjamin H.; Henty-Ridilla, Jessica L.; Abu-Abied, Mohamad; Sadot, Einat; Blanchoin, Laurent; Staiger, Christopher J.

    2014-01-01

    A network of individual filaments that undergoes incessant remodeling through a process known as stochastic dynamics comprises the cortical actin cytoskeleton in plant epidermal cells. From images at high spatial and temporal resolution, it has been inferred that the regulation of filament barbed ends plays a central role in choreographing actin organization and turnover. How this occurs at a molecular level, whether different populations of ends exist in the array, and how individual filament behavior correlates with the overall architecture of the array are unknown. Here we develop an experimental system to modulate the levels of heterodimeric capping protein (CP) and examine the consequences for actin dynamics, architecture, and cell expansion. Significantly, we find that all phenotypes are the opposite for CP-overexpression (OX) cells compared with a previously characterized cp-knockdown line. Specifically, CP OX lines have fewer filament–filament annealing events, as well as reduced filament lengths and lifetimes. Further, cp-knockdown and OX lines demonstrate the existence of a subpopulation of filament ends sensitive to CP concentration. Finally, CP levels correlate with the biological process of axial cell expansion; for example, epidermal cells from hypocotyls with reduced CP are longer than wild-type cells, whereas CP OX lines have shorter cells. On the basis of these and other genetic studies in this model system, we hypothesize that filament length and lifetime positively correlate with the extent of axial cell expansion in dark-grown hypocotyls. PMID:24523291

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  15. 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.

  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. 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

  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. Pathway of actin filament branch formation by Arp2/3 complex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beltzner, Christopher C; Pollard, Thomas D

    2008-03-14

    A spectroscopic assay using pyrene-labeled fission yeast Arp2/3 complex revealed that the complex binds to and dissociates from actin filaments extremely slowly with or without the nucleation-promoting factor fission yeast Wsp1-VCA. Wsp1-VCA binds both Arp2/3 complex and actin monomers with high affinity. These two ligands have only modest impacts on the interaction of the other ligand with VCA. Simulations of a mathematical model based on the kinetic parameters determined in this study and elsewhere account for the full time course of actin polymerization in the presence of Arp2/3 complex and Wsp1-VCA and show that an activation step, postulated to follow binding of a ternary complex of Arp2/3 complex, a bound nucleation-promoting factor, and an actin monomer to an actin filament, has a rate constant at least 0.15 s(-1). Kinetic parameters determined in this study constrain the process of actin filament branch formation during cellular motility to one main pathway.

  2. Spatial localisation of actin filaments across developmental stages of the malaria parasite.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fiona Angrisano

    Full Text Available Actin dynamics have been implicated in a variety of developmental processes during the malaria parasite lifecycle. Parasite motility, in particular, is thought to critically depend on an actomyosin motor located in the outer pellicle of the parasite cell. Efforts to understand the diverse roles actin plays have, however, been hampered by an inability to detect microfilaments under native conditions. To visualise the spatial dynamics of actin we generated a parasite-specific actin antibody that shows preferential recognition of filamentous actin and applied this tool to different lifecycle stages (merozoites, sporozoites and ookinetes of the human and mouse malaria parasite species Plasmodium falciparum and P. berghei along with tachyzoites from the related apicomplexan parasite Toxoplasma gondii. Actin filament distribution was found associated with three core compartments: the nuclear periphery, pellicular membranes of motile or invasive parasite forms and in a ring-like distribution at the tight junction during merozoite invasion of erythrocytes in both human and mouse malaria parasites. Localisation at the nuclear periphery is consistent with an emerging role of actin in facilitating parasite gene regulation. During invasion, we show that the actin ring at the parasite-host cell tight junction is dependent on dynamic filament turnover. Super-resolution imaging places this ring posterior to, and not concentric with, the junction marker rhoptry neck protein 4. This implies motor force relies on the engagement of dynamic microfilaments at zones of traction, though not necessarily directly through receptor-ligand interactions at sites of adhesion during invasion. Combined, these observations extend current understanding of the diverse roles actin plays in malaria parasite development and apicomplexan cell motility, in particular refining understanding on the linkage of the internal parasite gliding motor with the extra-cellular milieu.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  11. 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...

  12. Coexistence of Digenic Mutations in Both Thin (TPM1) and Thick (MYH7) Filaments of Sarcomeric Genes Leads to Severe Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy in a South Indian FHCM.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Selvi Rani, Deepa; Nallari, Pratibha; Dhandapany, Perundurai S; Rani, Jhansi; Meraj, Khunza; Ganesan, Mala; Narasimhan, Calambur; Thangaraj, Kumarasamy

    2015-05-01

    Mutations in sarcomeric genes are the leading cause for cardiomyopathies. However, not many genetic studies have been carried out on Indian cardiomyopathy patients. We performed sequence analyses of a thin filament sarcomeric gene, α-tropomyosin (TPM1), in 101 hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) patients and 147 dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) patients against 207 ethnically matched healthy controls, revealing 13 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). Of these, one mutant, S215L, was identified in two unrelated HCM cases-patient #1, aged 44, and patient #2, aged 65-and was cosegregating with disease in these families as an autosomal dominant trait. In contrast, S215L was completely absent in 147 DCM and 207 controls. Patient #1 showed a more severe disease phenotype, with poor prognosis and a family history of sudden cardiac death, than patient #2. Therefore, these two patients and the family members positive for S215L were further screened for variations in MYH7, MYBPC3, TNNT2, TNNI3, MYL2, MYL3, and ACTC. Interestingly, two novel thick filaments, D896N (homozygous) and I524K (heterozygous) mutations, in the MYH7 gene were identified exclusively in patient #1 and his family members. Thus, we strongly suggest that the coexistence of these digenic mutations is rare, but leads to severe hypertrophy in a South Indian familial hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (FHCM).

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. The excluded volume effect induced by poly(ethylene glycol) modulates the motility of actin filaments interacting with myosin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munakata, Shinsuke; Hatori, Kuniyuki

    2013-11-01

    To examine the motility of actomyosin complexes in the presence of high concentrations of polymers, we investigated the effect of poly(ethylene glycol) on the sliding velocities of actin filaments and regulated thin filaments on myosin molecules in the presence of ATP. Increased concentrations and relative molecular masses of poly(ethylene glycol) decreased the sliding velocities of actin and regulated thin filaments. The decreased ratio of velocity in regulated thin filaments at - log[Ca(2+) ] of 4 was higher than that of actin filaments. Furthermore, in the absence of Ca(2+) , regulated thin filaments were moderately motile in the presence of poly(ethylene glycol). The excluded volume change (∆V), defined as the change in water volume surrounding actomyosin during the interactions, was estimated by determining the relationship between osmotic pressure exerted by poly(ethylene glycol) and the decreased ratio of the velocities in the presence and absence of poly(ethylene glycol). The ∆V increased up to 3.7 × 10(5) Å(3) as the Mr range of poly(ethylene glycol) was increased up to 20,000. Moreover, the ∆V for regulated thin filaments was approximately two-fold higher than that of actin filaments. This finding suggests that differences in the conformation of filaments according to whether troponin-tropomyosin complexes lie on actin filaments alter the ∆V during interactions of actomyosin complexes and influence motility. © 2013 FEBS.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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...

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. Sarcomere lattice geometry influences cooperative myosin binding in muscle.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bertrand C W Tanner

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available In muscle, force emerges from myosin binding with actin (forming a cross-bridge. This actomyosin binding depends upon myofilament geometry, kinetics of thin-filament Ca(2+ activation, and kinetics of cross-bridge cycling. Binding occurs within a compliant network of protein filaments where there is mechanical coupling between myosins along the thick-filament backbone and between actin monomers along the thin filament. Such mechanical coupling precludes using ordinary differential equation models when examining the effects of lattice geometry, kinetics, or compliance on force production. This study uses two stochastically driven, spatially explicit models to predict levels of cross-bridge binding, force, thin-filament Ca(2+ activation, and ATP utilization. One model incorporates the 2-to-1 ratio of thin to thick filaments of vertebrate striated muscle (multi-filament model, while the other comprises only one thick and one thin filament (two-filament model. Simulations comparing these models show that the multi-filament predictions of force, fractional cross-bridge binding, and cross-bridge turnover are more consistent with published experimental values. Furthermore, the values predicted by the multi-filament model are greater than those values predicted by the two-filament model. These increases are larger than the relative increase of potential inter-filament interactions in the multi-filament model versus the two-filament model. This amplification of coordinated cross-bridge binding and cycling indicates a mechanism of cooperativity that depends on sarcomere lattice geometry, specifically the ratio and arrangement of myofilaments.

  5. 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

  6. Self-assembly of actin monomers into long filaments: Brownian Dynamics simulations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Shillcock, Julian C.

    2009-01-01

    /detachment events. When a single filament is allowed to grow in a bath of constant concentration of free ADP-actin monomers, its growth rate increases linearly with the free monomer concentration in quantitative agreement with in vitro experiments. Theresults also show that the waiting time is governed by exponential......Brownian dynamics simulations are used to study the dynamical process of self-assembly of actin monomers into long filaments containing up to 1000 actin protomers. In order to overcome the large separation of time scales between the diffusive motion of the freemonomers and the relatively slow...... states corresponding to a bound adenosine triphosphate (ATP), adenosine diphosphate with inorganic phosphate (ADP/P), and ADP molecule. The simplest situation that has been studied experimentally is provided by the polymerization of ADP-actin, for which all protomers are identical. This case is used...

  7. 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.

  8. Desmin and actin filaments in membrane-cytoskeletal preparations of the electric tissue of Electrophorus electricus, L.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mermelstein, C S; Benchimol, M; Taffarel, M; Cristina, M; Cordeiro, R; Chagas, C; Moura Neto, V

    1997-12-01

    The electrocyte of the electric organ of the electric eel, Electrophorus electricus, L was investigated by light and electron microscopy as well as immuno-electron microscopy, in order to clarify the fine structures and distribution of cytoskeleton filaments and their relations to proteins, especially desmin and actin. Cytoskeleton-enriched fractions of the electrocytes were analysed with SDS-PAGE. It was verified that a meshwork of filaments was distributed in the electrocytes, more abundantly in the anterior than in the posterior part of the cell, and that this could be associated with membrane invaginations. Desmin and actin were the components of this meshwork, suggesting that desmin intermediate filaments and actin filaments might play a role in the maintenance of the morphology of electrocytes and, as an intracellular filamentous meshwork, they may contribute to the organization of the components of membranes and papillae formation on the anterior face of the electrocytes.

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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.

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

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    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.

  14. Automatic Actin Filament Quantification of Osteoblasts and Their Morphometric Analysis on Microtextured Silicon-Titanium Arrays

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    Claudia Matschegewski

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Microtexturing of implant surfaces is of major relevance in the endeavor to improve biorelevant implant designs. In order to elucidate the role of biomaterial’s topography on cell physiology, obtaining quantitative correlations between cellular behavior and distinct microarchitectural properties is in great demand. Until now, the microscopically observed reorganization of the cytoskeleton on structured biomaterials has been difficult to convert into data. We used geometrically microtextured silicon-titanium arrays as a model system. Samples were prepared by deep reactive-ion etching of silicon wafers, resulting in rectangular grooves (width and height: 2 µm and cubic pillars (pillar dimensions: 2 × 2 × 5 and 5 × 5 × 5 µm; finally sputter-coated with 100 nm titanium. We focused on the morphometric analysis of MG-63 osteoblasts, including a quantification of the actin cytoskeleton. By means of our novel software FilaQuant, especially developed for automatic actin filament recognition, we were first able to quantify the alterations of the actin network dependent on the microtexture of a material surface. The cells’ actin fibers were significantly reduced in length on the pillared surfaces versus the grooved array (4–5 fold and completely reorganized on the micropillars, but without altering the orientation of cells. Our morpho-functional approach opens new possibilities for the data correlation of cell-material interactions.

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

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    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).

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

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

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    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.

  20. 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

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

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    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.

  2. An ongoing role for structural sarcomeric components in maintaining Drosophila melanogaster muscle function and structure.

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    Alexander D Perkins

    Full Text Available Animal muscles must maintain their function while bearing substantial mechanical loads. How muscles withstand persistent mechanical strain is presently not well understood. The basic unit of muscle is the sarcomere, which is primarily composed of cytoskeletal proteins. We hypothesized that cytoskeletal protein turnover is required to maintain muscle function. Using the flight muscles of Drosophila melanogaster, we confirmed that the sarcomeric cytoskeleton undergoes turnover throughout adult life. To uncover which cytoskeletal components are required to maintain adult muscle function, we performed an RNAi-mediated knockdown screen targeting the entire fly cytoskeleton and associated proteins. Gene knockdown was restricted to adult flies and muscle function was analyzed with behavioural assays. Here we analyze the results of that screen and characterize the specific muscle maintenance role for several hits. The screen identified 46 genes required for muscle maintenance: 40 of which had no previously known role in this process. Bioinformatic analysis highlighted the structural sarcomeric proteins as a candidate group for further analysis. Detailed confocal and electron microscopic analysis showed that while muscle architecture was maintained after candidate gene knockdown, sarcomere length was disrupted. Specifically, we found that ongoing synthesis and turnover of the key sarcomere structural components Projectin, Myosin and Actin are required to maintain correct sarcomere length and thin filament length. Our results provide in vivo evidence of adult muscle protein turnover and uncover specific functional defects associated with reduced expression of a subset of cytoskeletal proteins in the adult animal.

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. Sarcomere Dysfunction in Nemaline Myopathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Winter, Josine M; Ottenheijm, Coen A C

    2017-01-01

    Nemaline myopathy (NM) is among the most common non-dystrophic congenital myopathies (incidence 1:50.000). Hallmark features of NM are skeletal muscle weakness and the presence of nemaline bodies in the muscle fiber. The clinical phenotype of NM patients is quite diverse, ranging from neonatal death to normal lifespan with almost normal motor function. As the respiratory muscles are involved as well, severely affected patients are ventilator-dependent. The mechanisms underlying muscle weakness in NM are currently poorly understood. Therefore, no therapeutic treatment is available yet.Eleven implicated genes have been identified: ten genes encode proteins that are either components of thin filament, or are thought to contribute to stability or turnover of thin filament proteins. The thin filament is a major constituent of the sarcomere, the smallest contractile unit in muscle. It is at this level of contraction - thin-thick filament interaction - where muscle weakness originates in NM patients.This review focusses on how sarcomeric gene mutations directly compromise sarcomere function in NM. Insight into the contribution of sarcomeric dysfunction to muscle weakness in NM, across the genes involved, will direct towards the development of targeted therapeutic strategies.

  7. Segregation of prokaryotic magnetosomes organelles is driven by treadmilling of a dynamic actin-like MamK filament.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toro-Nahuelpan, Mauricio; Müller, Frank D; Klumpp, Stefan; Plitzko, Jürgen M; Bramkamp, Marc; Schüler, Dirk

    2016-10-12

    The navigation of magnetotactic bacteria relies on specific intracellular organelles, the magnetosomes, which are membrane-enclosed crystals of magnetite aligned into a linear chain. The magnetosome chain acts as a cellular compass, aligning the cells in the geomagnetic field in order to search for suitable environmental conditions in chemically stratified water columns and sediments. During cytokinesis, magnetosome chains have to be properly positioned, cleaved and separated in order to be evenly passed into daughter cells. In Magnetospirillum gryphiswaldense, the assembly of the magnetosome chain is controlled by the actin-like MamK, which polymerizes into cytoskeletal filaments that are connected to magnetosomes through the acidic MamJ protein. MamK filaments were speculated to recruit the magnetosome chain to cellular division sites, thus ensuring equal organelle inheritance. However, the underlying mechanism of magnetic organelle segregation has remained largely unknown. Here, we performed in vivo time-lapse fluorescence imaging to directly track the intracellular movement and dynamics of magnetosome chains as well as photokinetic and ultrastructural analyses of the actin-like cytoskeletal MamK filament. We show that magnetosome chains undergo rapid intracellular repositioning from the new poles towards midcell into the newborn daughter cells, and the driving force for magnetosomes movement is likely provided by the pole-to-midcell treadmilling growth of MamK filaments. We further discovered that splitting and equipartitioning of magnetosome chains occurs with unexpectedly high accuracy, which depends directly on the dynamics of MamK filaments. We propose a novel mechanism for prokaryotic organelle segregation that, similar to the type-II bacterial partitioning system of plasmids, relies on the action of cytomotive actin-like filaments together with specific connectors, which transport the magnetosome cargo in a fashion reminiscent of eukaryotic actin

  8. Single-Molecule Discrimination within Dendritic Spines of Discrete Perisynaptic Sites of Actin Filament Assembly Driving Postsynaptic Reorganization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blanpied, Thomas A.

    2013-03-01

    In the brain, the strength of synaptic transmission between neurons is principally set by the organization of proteins within the receptive, postsynaptic cell. Synaptic strength at an individual site of contact can remain remarkably stable for months or years. However, it also can undergo diverse forms of plasticity which change the strength at that contact independent of changes to neighboring synapses. Such activity-triggered neural plasticity underlies memory storage and cognitive development, and is disrupted in pathological physiology such as addiction and schizophrenia. Much of the short-term regulation of synaptic plasticity occurs within the postsynaptic cell, in small subcompartments surrounding the synaptic contact. Biochemical subcompartmentalization necessary for synapse-specific plasticity is achieved in part by segregation of synapses to micron-sized protrusions from the cell called dendritic spines. Dendritic spines are heavily enriched in the actin cytoskeleton, and regulation of actin polymerization within dendritic spines controls both basal synaptic strength and many forms of synaptic plasticity. However, understanding the mechanism of this control has been difficult because the submicron dimensions of spines limit examination of actin dynamics in the spine interior by conventional confocal microscopy. To overcome this, we developed single-molecule tracking photoactivated localization microscopy (smtPALM) to measure the movement of individual actin molecules within living spines. This revealed inward actin flow from broad areas of the spine plasma membrane, as well as a dense central core of heterogeneous filament orientation. The velocity of single actin molecules along filaments was elevated in discrete regions within the spine, notably near the postsynaptic density but surprisingly not at the endocytic zone which is involved in some forms of plasticity. We conclude that actin polymerization is initiated at many well-separated foci within

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. The titin A-band rod domain is dispensable for initial thick filament assembly in zebrafish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Myhre, J Layne; Hills, Jordan A; Prill, Kendal; Wohlgemuth, Serene L; Pilgrim, David B

    2014-03-01

    The sarcomeres of skeletal and cardiac muscle are highly structured protein arrays, consisting of thick and thin filaments aligned precisely to one another and to their surrounding matrix. The contractile mechanisms of sarcomeres are generally well understood, but how the patterning of sarcomeres is initiated during early skeletal muscle and cardiac development remains uncertain. Two of the most widely accepted hypotheses for this process include the "molecular ruler" model, in which the massive protein titin defines the length of the sarcomere and provides a scaffold along which the myosin thick filament is assembled, and the "premyofibril" model, which proposes that thick filament formation does not require titin, but that a "premyofibril" consisting of non-muscle myosin, α-actinin and cytoskeletal actin is used as a template. Each model posits a different order of necessity of the various components, but these have been difficult to test in vivo. Zebrafish motility mutants with developmental defects in sarcomere patterning are useful for the elucidation of such mechanisms, and here we report the analysis of the herzschlag mutant, which shows deficits in both cardiac and skeletal muscle. The herzschlag mutant produces a truncated titin protein, lacking the C-terminal rod domain that is proposed to act as a thick filament scaffold, yet muscle patterning is still initiated, with grossly normal thick and thin filament assembly. Only after embryonic muscle contraction begins is breakdown of sarcomeric myosin patterning observed, consistent with the previously noted role of titin in maintaining the contractile integrity of mature sarcomeres. This conflicts with the "molecular ruler" model of early sarcomere patterning and supports a titin-independent model of thick filament organization during sarcomerogenesis. These findings are also consistent with the symptoms of human titin myopathies that exhibit a late onset, such as tibial muscular dystrophy.

  18. 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.

  19. Hyper-mobility of water around actin filaments revealed using pulse-field gradient spin-echo {sup 1}H NMR and fluorescence spectroscopy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wazawa, Tetsuichi [Department of Materials Processing, Graduate School of Tohoku University, 6-6-02 Aobayama, Aoba-Ku, Sendai, Miyagi 980-8579 (Japan); CREST, JST, 4-1-8, Honcho, Kawaguchi, Saitama 332-0012 (Japan); Sagawa, Takashi; Ogawa, Tsubasa; Morimoto, Nobuyuki [Department of Materials Processing, Graduate School of Tohoku University, 6-6-02 Aobayama, Aoba-Ku, Sendai, Miyagi 980-8579 (Japan); Kodama, Takao [Immunology Frontier Research Center, Osaka University, 3-1 Yamada-Oka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); Suzuki, Makoto, E-mail: msuzuki@material.tohoku.ac.jp [Department of Materials Processing, Graduate School of Tohoku University, 6-6-02 Aobayama, Aoba-Ku, Sendai, Miyagi 980-8579 (Japan); CREST, JST, 4-1-8, Honcho, Kawaguchi, Saitama 332-0012 (Japan)

    2011-01-28

    Research highlights: {yields} Translationally hyper-mobile water has been detected around actin filaments. {yields} Translationally hyper-mobile water is formed upon polymerization of actin. {yields} Low water viscosity was found around F-actin using fluorescence anisotropy. {yields} Formation of hyper-mobile water may explain endothermic actin polymerization. -- Abstract: This paper reports that water molecules around F-actin, a polymerized form of actin, are more mobile than those around G-actin or in bulk water. A measurement using pulse-field gradient spin-echo {sup 1}H NMR showed that the self-diffusion coefficient of water in aqueous F-actin solution increased with actin concentration by {approx}5%, whereas that in G-actin solution was close to that of pure water. This indicates that an F-actin/water interaction is responsible for the high self-diffusion of water. The local viscosity around actin was also investigated by fluorescence measurements of Cy3, a fluorescent dye, conjugated to Cys 374 of actin. The steady-state fluorescence anisotropy of Cy3 attached to F-actin was 0.270, which was lower than that for G-actin, 0.334. Taking into account the fluorescence lifetimes of the Cy3 bound to actin, their rotational correlation times were estimated to be 3.8 and 9.1 ns for F- and G-actin, respectively. This indicates that Cy3 bound to F-actin rotates more freely than that bound to G-actin, and therefore the local water viscosity is lower around F-actin than around G-actin.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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...

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. Cooperation of Mtmr8 with PI3K regulates actin filament modeling and muscle development in zebrafish.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jie Mei

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: It has been shown that mutations in at least four myotubularin family genes (MTM1, MTMR1, 2 and 13 are causative for human neuromuscular disorders. However, the pathway and regulative mechanism remain unknown. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here, we reported a new role for Mtmr8 in neuromuscular development of zebrafish. Firstly, we cloned and characterized zebrafish Mtmr8, and revealed the expression pattern predominantly in the eye field and somites during early somitogenesis. Using morpholino knockdown, then, we observed that loss-of-function of Mtmr8 led to defects in somitogenesis. Subsequently, the possible underlying mechanism and signal pathway were examined. We first checked the Akt phosphorylation, and observed an increase of Akt phosphorylation in the morphant embryos. Furthermore, we studied the PH/G domain function within Mtmr8. Although the PH/G domain deletion by itself did not result in embryonic defect, addition of PI3K inhibitor LY294002 did give a defective phenotype in the PH/G deletion morphants, indicating that the PH/G domain was essential for Mtmr8's function. Moreover, we investigated the cooperation of Mtmr8 with PI3K in actin filament modeling and muscle development, and found that both Mtmr8-MO1 and Mtmr8-MO2+LY294002 led to the disorganization of the actin cytoskeleton. In addition, we revealed a possible participation of Mtmr8 in the Hedgehog pathway, and cell transplantation experiments showed that Mtmr8 worked in a non-cell autonomous manner in actin modeling. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: The above data indicate that a conserved functional cooperation of Mtmr8 with PI3K regulates actin filament modeling and muscle development in zebrafish, and reveal a possible participation of Mtmr8 in the Hedgehog pathway. Therefore, this work provides a new clue to study the physiological function of MTM family members.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. The More the Tubular: Dynamic Bundling of Actin Filaments for Membrane Tube Formation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julian Weichsel

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Tubular protrusions are a common feature of living cells, arising from polymerization of stiff protein filaments against a comparably soft membrane. Although this process involves many accessory proteins in cells, in vitro experiments indicate that similar tube-like structures can emerge without them, through spontaneous bundling of filaments mediated by the membrane. Using theory and simulation of physical models, we have elaborated how nonequilibrium fluctuations in growth kinetics and membrane shape can yield such protrusions. Enabled by a new grand canonical Monte Carlo method for membrane simulation, our work reveals a cascade of dynamical transitions from individually polymerizing filaments to highly cooperatively growing bundles as a dynamical bottleneck to tube formation. Filament network organization as well as adhesion points to the membrane, which bias filament bending and constrain membrane height fluctuations, screen the effective attractive interactions between filaments, significantly delaying bundling and tube formation.

  10. NMII forms a contractile transcellular sarcomeric network to regulate apical cell junctions and tissue geometry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ebrahim, Seham; Fujita, Tomoki; Millis, Bryan A; Kozin, Elliott; Ma, Xuefei; Kawamoto, Sachiyo; Baird, Michelle A; Davidson, Michael; Yonemura, Shigenobu; Hisa, Yasuo; Conti, Mary Anne; Adelstein, Robert S; Sakaguchi, Hirofumi; Kachar, Bechara

    2013-04-22

    Nonmuscle myosin II (NMII) is thought to be the master integrator of force within epithelial apical junctions, mediating epithelial tissue morphogenesis and tensional homeostasis. Mutations in NMII are associated with a number of diseases due to failures in cell-cell adhesion. However, the organization and the precise mechanism by which NMII generates and responds to tension along the intercellular junctional line are still not known. We discovered that periodic assemblies of bipolar NMII filaments interlace with perijunctional actin and α-actinin to form a continuous belt of muscle-like sarcomeric units (∼400-600 nm) around each epithelial cell. Remarkably, the sarcomeres of adjacent cells are precisely paired across the junctional line, forming an integrated, transcellular contractile network. The contraction/relaxation of paired sarcomeres concomitantly impacts changes in apical cell shape and tissue geometry. We show differential distribution of NMII isoforms across heterotypic junctions and evidence for compensation between isoforms. Our results provide a model for how NMII force generation is effected along the junctional perimeter of each cell and communicated across neighboring cells in the epithelial organization. The sarcomeric network also provides a well-defined target to investigate the multiple roles of NMII in junctional homeostasis as well as in development and disease. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. Contractile units in disordered actomyosin bundles arise from F-actin buckling

    CERN Document Server

    Lenz, Martin; Gardel, Margaret L; Dinner, Aaron R

    2012-01-01

    Bundles of filaments and motors are central to contractility in cells. The classic example is striated muscle, where actomyosin contractility is mediated by highly organized sarcomeres which act as fundamental contractile units. However, many contractile bundles in vivo and in vitro lack sarcomeric organization. Here we propose a model for how contractility can arise in actomyosin bundles without sarcomeric organization and validate its predictions with experiments on a reconstituted system. In the model, internal stresses in frustrated arrangements of motors with diverse velocities cause filaments to buckle, leading to overall shortening. We describe the onset of buckling in the presence of stochastic actin-myosin detachment and predict that buckling-induced contraction occurs in an intermediate range of motor densities. We then calculate the size of the "contractile units" associated with this process. Consistent with these results, our reconstituted actomyosin bundles contract at relatively high motor dens...

  14. The sarcomeric protein nebulin: another multifunctional giant in charge of muscle strength optimization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ottenheijm, Coen A C; Granzier, Henk; Labeit, Siegfried

    2012-01-01

    The sliding filament model of the sarcomere was developed more than half a century ago. This model, consisting only of thin and thick filaments, has been successful in explaining many, but not all, features of skeletal muscle. Work during the 1980s revealed the existence of two additional filaments: the giant filamentous proteins titin and nebulin. Whereas the role of titin rapidly progressed, nebulin's role in muscle structure and function remained long nebulous. An important feature of muscle structure and function that has remained relatively obscure concerns the mechanisms that are involved in regulating thin filament length. Filament length is an important aspect of muscle function as force production is proportional to the amount of overlap between thick and thin filaments. Recent advances, due in part to the generation of nebulin KO models, reveal that nebulin plays an important role in the regulation of thin filament length, most likely by stabilizing F-actin assemblies. Another structural feature of skeletal muscle that has been incompletely understood concerns the mechanisms involved in maintaining Z-disk structure and the regular lateral alignment of adjacent sarcomeres during contraction. Recent studies indicate that nebulin is part of a protein complex that mechanically links adjacent myofibrils. In addition to these structural roles in support of myofibrillar force generation, nebulin has been also shown to regulate directly muscle contraction at the level of individual crossbridges: cycling kinetics and the calcium sensitivity of force producing crossbridges is enhanced in the presence of nebulin. Thus, these recent data all point to nebulin being important for muscle force optimization. Consequently, muscle weakness as the lead symptom develops in the case of patients with nemaline myopathy that have mutations in the nebulin gene. Here, we discuss these important novel insights into the role of nebulin in skeletal muscle function.

  15. The sarcomeric protein nebulin: another multifunctional giant in charge of muscle strength optimization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Coen eOttenheijm

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available The sliding filament model of the sarcomere was developed more than half a century ago. This model, consisting only of thin and thick filaments, has been successful in explaining many, but not all, features of skeletal muscle. Work during the 1980s revealed the existence of two additional filaments: the giant filamentous proteins titin and nebulin. Whereas the role of titin rapidly progressed, nebulin’s role in muscle structure and function remained long nebulous. An important feature of muscle structure and function that has remained relatively obscure concerns the mechanisms that are involved in regulating thin filament length. Filament length is an important aspect of muscle function as force production is proportional to the amount of overlap between thick and thin filaments. Recent advances, due in part to the generation of nebulin KO models, reveal that nebulin plays an important role in the regulation of thin filament length, most likely by stabilizing F-actin assemblies. Another structural feature of skeletal muscle that has been incompletely understood concerns the mechanisms involved in maintaining Z-disk structure and the regular lateral alignment of adjacent sarcomeres during contraction. Recent studies indicate that nebulin is part of a protein complex that mechanically links adjacent myofibrils. In addition to these structural roles in support of myofibrillar force generation, nebulin has been also shown to regulate directly muscle contraction at the level of individual cross bridges: cycling kinetics and the calcium sensitivity of force producing cross-bridges is enhanced in the presence of nebulin. Thus, these recent data all point to nebulin being important for muscle force optimization. Consequently, muscle weakness as the lead symptom develops in the case of patients with nemaline myopathy that have mutations in the nebulin gene. Here, we discuss these important novel insights into the role of nebulin in skeletal muscle

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

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

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

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

    2003-01-01

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

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. Rate-dependent force, intracellular calcium, and action potential voltage alternans are modulated by sarcomere length and heart failure induced-remodeling of thin filament regulation in human heart failure: A myocyte modeling study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zile, Melanie A; Trayanova, Natalia A

    2016-01-01

    Microvolt T-wave alternans (MTWA) testing identifies heart failure patients at risk for lethal ventricular arrhythmias at near-resting heart rates (voltage alternans (APV-ALT), the cellular driver of MTWA. Our goal was to uncover the mechanisms linking APV-ALT and FORCE-ALT in failing human myocytes and to investigate how the link between those alternans was affected by pacing rate and by physiological conditions such as sarcomere length and heart failure induced-remodeling of mechanical parameters. To achieve this, a mechanically-based, strongly coupled human electromechanical myocyte model was constructed. Reducing the sarcoplasmic reticulum calcium uptake current (Iup) to 27% was incorporated to simulate abnormal calcium handling in human heart failure. Mechanical remodeling was incorporated to simulate altered thin filament activation and crossbridge (XB) cycling rates. A dynamical pacing protocol was used to investigate the development of intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca]i), voltage, and active force alternans at different pacing rates. FORCE-ALT only occurred in simulations incorporating reduced Iup, demonstrating that alternans in the intracellular calcium concentration (CA-ALT) induced FORCE-ALT. The magnitude of FORCE-ALT was found to be largest at clinically relevant pacing rates (<110 bpm), where APV-ALT was smallest. We found that the magnitudes of FORCE-ALT, CA-ALT and APV-ALT were altered by heart failure induced-remodeling of mechanical parameters and sarcomere length due to the presence of myofilament feedback. These findings provide important insight into the relationship between heart-failure-induced electrical and mechanical alternans and how they are altered by physiological conditions at near-resting heart rates.

  4. The role of filament length, finite-extensibility and motor force dispersity in stress relaxation and buckling mechanisms in non-sarcomeric active gels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Córdoba, Andrés; Schieber, Jay D; Indei, Tsutomu

    2015-01-07

    After relaxing some assumptions we apply a single-chain mean-field mathematical model recently introduced [RSC Adv. (2014)] to describe the role of molecular motors in the mechanical properties of active gels. The model allows physics that are not available in models postulated on coarser levels of description. Moreover it proposes a level of description that allows the prediction of observables at time scales too difficult to achieve in multi-chain simulations for realistic filament lengths and densities. We model the semiflexible filaments that compose the active gel as bead-spring chains; molecular motors are accounted for by using a mean-field approach, in which filaments undergo transitions of one motor attachment state depending on the state of the probe filament. The level of description includes the end-to-end distance and attachment state of the filaments, and the motor-generated forces, as stochastic state variables which evolve according to a proposed differential Chapman-Kolmogorov equation. The motor-generated forces are drawn from a stationary distribution of motor stall forces. We consider bead-spring chains with multiple beads, explore the effect of finite-extensibility of the strands and incorporate into the model motor force distributions that have been measured experimentally. The model can no longer be solved analytically but is amenable to numerical simulation. This version of the model allows a more quantitative description of buckling dynamics [Lenz et. al. PRL, 2012, 108, 238107] and the dynamic modulus of active gels. The effect of finite extensibility of the filament strands on the dynamic modulus was also found to be in agreement with the microrheology experiments of Mizuno et. al., [Science, 2007, 315, 370-373].

  5. 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.

  6. The nebulette repeat domain is necessary for proper maintenance of tropomyosin with the cardiac sarcomere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonzo, Jeremy R; Norris, Andrea A; Esham, Michael; Moncman, Carole L

    2008-11-15

    Nebulette is a cardiac-specific isoform of the giant actin-binding protein nebulin. Nebulette, having a mass of approximately 100 kDa, is only predicted to extend 150 nm from the edge of the Z-lines. Overexpression of the nebulette C-terminal linker and/or SH3 domains in chicken cardiomyocytes results in a loss of endogenous nebulette with a concomitant loss of tropomyosin (TPM) and troponin, as well as a shortening of the thin filaments. These data suggest that nebulette's position in the sarcomere is important for the maintenance of TPM, troponin and thin filament length. To evaluate this hypothesis, N-terminal nested truncations tagged with GFP were expressed in chicken cardiomyocytes and the cells were analyzed for the distribution of myofilament proteins. Minimal effects on the myofilaments were observed with N-terminal deletions of up to 10 modules; however, deletion of 15 modules replicated the phenotype observed with expression of the C-terminal fragments. Expression of internal deletions of nebulette verifies that a site between module 10 and 15 is important for TPM maintenance within the sarcomeric lattice. We have additionally isolated TPM cDNAs from a yeast two hybrid (Y2H) analysis. These data indicate the importance of the nebulette-TPM interactions in the maintenance and stability of the thin filaments.

  7. 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...

  8. 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

  9. 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...

  10. Computing Average Passive Forces in Sarcomeres in Length-Ramp Simulations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schappacher-Tilp, Gudrun; Leonard, Timothy; Desch, Gertrud; Herzog, Walter

    2016-06-01

    Passive forces in sarcomeres are mainly related to the giant protein titin. Titin's extensible region consists of spring-like elements acting in series. In skeletal muscles these elements are the PEVK segment, two distinct immunoglobulin (Ig) domain regions (proximal and distal), and a N2A portion. While distal Ig domains are thought to form inextensible end filaments in intact sarcomeres, proximal Ig domains unfold in a force- and time-dependent manner. In length-ramp experiments of single titin strands, sequential unfolding of Ig domains leads to a typical saw-tooth pattern in force-elongation curves which can be simulated by Monte Carlo simulations. In sarcomeres, where more than a thousand titin strands are arranged in parallel, numerous Monte Carlo simulations are required to estimate the resultant force of all titin filaments based on the non-uniform titin elongations. To simplify calculations, the stochastic model of passive forces is often replaced by linear or non-linear deterministic and phenomenological functions. However, new theories of muscle contraction are based on the hypothesized binding of titin to the actin filament upon activation, and thereby on a prominent role of the structural properties of titin. Therefore, these theories necessitate a detailed analysis of titin forces in length-ramp experiments. In our study we present a simple and efficient alternative to Monte Carlo simulations. Based on a structural titin model, we calculate the exact probability distributions of unfolded Ig domains under length-ramp conditions needed for rigorous analysis of expected forces, distribution of unfolding forces, etc. Due to the generality of our model, the approach is applicable to a wide range of stochastic protein unfolding problems.

  11. 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.

  12. 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...

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. Rictor/mTORC2 regulates blood-testis barrier dynamics via its effects on gap junction communications and actin filament network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mok, Ka-Wai; Mruk, Dolores D; Lee, Will M; Cheng, C Yan

    2013-03-01

    In the mammalian testis, coexisting tight junctions (TJs), basal ectoplasmic specializations, and gap junctions (GJs), together with desmosomes near the basement membrane, constitute the blood-testis barrier (BTB). The most notable feature of the BTB, however, is the extensive network of actin filament bundles, which makes it one of the tightest blood-tissue barriers. The BTB undergoes restructuring to facilitate the transit of preleptotene spermatocytes at stage VIII-IX of the epithelial cycle. Thus, the F-actin network at the BTB undergoes cyclic reorganization via a yet-to-be explored mechanism. Rictor, the key component of mTORC2 that is known to regulate actin cytoskeleton, was shown to express stage-specifically at the BTB in the seminiferous epithelium. Its expression was down-regulated at the BTB in stage VIII-IX tubules, coinciding with BTB restructuring at these stages. Using an in vivo model, a down-regulation of rictor at the BTB was also detected during adjudin-induced BTB disruption, illustrating rictor expression is positively correlated with the status of the BTB integrity. Indeed, the knockdown of rictor by RNAi was found to perturb the Sertoli cell TJ-barrier function in vitro and the BTB integrity in vivo. This loss of barrier function was accompanied by changes in F-actin organization at the Sertoli cell BTB in vitro and in vivo, associated with a loss of interaction between actin and α-catenin or ZO-1. Rictor knockdown by RNAi was also found to impede Sertoli cell-cell GJ communication, disrupting protein distribution (e.g., occludin, ZO-1) at the BTB, illustrating that rictor is a crucial BTB regulator.

  16. 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...

  17. 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.

  18. Phytoplasma infection in tomato is associated with re-organization of plasma membrane, ER stacks and actin filaments in sieve elements

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefanie Vera Buxa

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Phytoplasmas, biotrophic wall-less prokaryotes, only reside in sieve elements of their host plants. The essentials of the intimate interaction between phytoplasmas and their hosts are poorly understood, which calls for research on potential ultrastructural modifications. We investigated modifications of the sieve-element ultrastructure induced in tomato plants by ‘Candidatus Phytoplasma solani’, the pathogen associated with the stolbur disease. Phytoplasma infection induces a drastic re-organization of sieve-element substructures including changes in plasma membrane surface and distortion of the sieve-element reticulum. Observations of healthy and stolbur-diseased plants provided evidence for the emergence of structural links between sieve-element plasma membrane and phytoplasmas. One-sided actin aggregates on the phytoplasma surface also inferred a connection between phytoplasma and sieve-element cytoskeleton. Actin filaments displaced from the sieve-element mictoplasm to the surface of the phytoplasmas in infected sieve elements. Expression analysis revealed a decrease of actin and an increase of ER-resident chaperone luminal binding protein (BiP in midribs of phytoplasma-infected plants. Collectively, the studies provided novel insights into ultrastructural responses of host sieve elements to phloem-restricted prokaryotes.

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. Interaction of Phalloidin with Actin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lengsfeld, Anneliese M.; Löw, Irmentraut; Wieland, Theodor; Dancker, Peter; Hasselbach, Wilhelm

    1974-01-01

    Phalloidin, a toxic bicyclic peptide of rapid action from the toadstool, Amanita phalloides, gives rise to polymerization of G-actin to filamentous structures (Ph-actin) in a medium of low ionic strength. Ph-actin closely resembles the microfilaments found in liver membrane fractions (Ph-filaments) after in vivo or in vitro poisoning. Both phalloidin induced filaments are resistant to 0.6 M KI in contrast to F-actin, and become decorated by heavy meromyosin. After preincubation with cytochalasin B significantly fewer actin filaments are observed. Images PMID:4368830

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. Sallimus and the dynamics of sarcomere assembly in Drosophila flight muscles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orfanos, Zacharias; Leonard, Kevin; Elliott, Chris; Katzemich, Anja; Bullard, Belinda; Sparrow, John

    2015-06-19

    The Drosophila indirect flight muscles (IFM) can be used as a model for the study of sarcomere assembly. Here we use a transgenic line with a green fluorescent protein (GFP) exon inserted into the Z-disc-proximal portion of sallimus (Sls), also known as Drosophila titin, to observe sarcomere assembly during IFM development. Firstly, we confirm that Sls-GFP can be used in the heterozygote state without an obvious phenotype in IFM and other muscles. We then use Sls-GFP in the IFM to show that sarcomeres grow individually and uniformly throughout the fibre, growing linearly in length and in diameter. Finally, we show that limiting the amounts of Sls in the IFM using RNAi leads to sarcomeres with smaller Z-discs in their core, whilst the thick/thin filament lattice can form peripherally without a Z-disc. Thick filament preparations from those muscles show that although the Z-disc-containing core has thick filaments of a regular length, filaments from the peripheral lattice are longer and asymmetrical around the bare zone. Therefore, the Z-disc and Sls are required for thick filament length specification but not for the assembly of the thin/thick filament lattice.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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...

  12. Sarcomere lengthening and tension drop in the latent period of isolated frog skeletal muscle fibers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haugen, P; Sten-Knudsen, O

    1976-09-01

    A laser diffraction technique has been developed for registering small changes in sarcomere length. The technique is capable of resolving changes as small as 0.2 A in isolated frog skeletal muscle fibers. The small sarcomere lengthening that accompanies the drop in tension in the latent period of contraction was investigated. We suggest this lengthening be named latency elongation (LE). The LE is present in a completely slack fiber and must, therefore, be caused by a forcible lengthening process. Furthermore, the LE is dependent on the existence of an overlap between thin and tick filaments. The rate of elongation and the time interval between stimulation and maximum elongation may vary along the fiber. The maximum elongation was 3-5 A per sarcomere. At any instant the drop in tension is a product of the sum of sarcomere lengthenings along the fiber and the slope stiffness of the series elasticity. The latency relaxation (LR) could be registered in the sarcomere length range from 2.2 mum to 3.6-3.7 mum. The amplitude went through a sharp maximum at 3.0-3.1 mum. In the sarcomere length range from 2.2 to 2.8 mum the delay from onset to maximum LR was nearly proportional to the distance from the Z-line to the overlap zone. A working hypothesis is presented. It is suggested that the LE is caused by a lengthening of the thin filaments.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. Leiomodin-3 dysfunction results in thin filament disorganization and nemaline myopathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuen, Michaela; Sandaradura, Sarah A; Dowling, James J; Kostyukova, Alla S; Moroz, Natalia; Quinlan, Kate G; Lehtokari, Vilma-Lotta; Ravenscroft, Gianina; Todd, Emily J; Ceyhan-Birsoy, Ozge; Gokhin, David S; Maluenda, Jérome; Lek, Monkol; Nolent, Flora; Pappas, Christopher T; Novak, Stefanie M; D'Amico, Adele; Malfatti, Edoardo; Thomas, Brett P; Gabriel, Stacey B; Gupta, Namrata; Daly, Mark J; Ilkovski, Biljana; Houweling, Peter J; Davidson, Ann E; Swanson, Lindsay C; Brownstein, Catherine A; Gupta, Vandana A; Medne, Livija; Shannon, Patrick; Martin, Nicole; Bick, David P; Flisberg, Anders; Holmberg, Eva; Van den Bergh, Peter; Lapunzina, Pablo; Waddell, Leigh B; Sloboda, Darcée D; Bertini, Enrico; Chitayat, David; Telfer, William R; Laquerrière, Annie; Gregorio, Carol C; Ottenheijm, Coen A C; Bönnemann, Carsten G; Pelin, Katarina; Beggs, Alan H; Hayashi, Yukiko K; Romero, Norma B; Laing, Nigel G; Nishino, Ichizo; Wallgren-Pettersson, Carina; Melki, Judith; Fowler, Velia M; MacArthur, Daniel G; North, Kathryn N; Clarke, Nigel F

    2014-11-01

    Nemaline myopathy (NM) is a genetic muscle disorder characterized by muscle dysfunction and electron-dense protein accumulations (nemaline bodies) in myofibers. Pathogenic mutations have been described in 9 genes to date, but the genetic basis remains unknown in many cases. Here, using an approach that combined whole-exome sequencing (WES) and Sanger sequencing, we identified homozygous or compound heterozygous variants in LMOD3 in 21 patients from 14 families with severe, usually lethal, NM. LMOD3 encodes leiomodin-3 (LMOD3), a 65-kDa protein expressed in skeletal and cardiac muscle. LMOD3 was expressed from early stages of muscle differentiation; localized to actin thin filaments, with enrichment near the pointed ends; and had strong actin filament-nucleating activity. Loss of LMOD3 in patient muscle resulted in shortening and disorganization of thin filaments. Knockdown of lmod3 in zebrafish replicated NM-associated functional and pathological phenotypes. Together, these findings indicate that mutations in the gene encoding LMOD3 underlie congenital myopathy and demonstrate that LMOD3 is essential for the organization of sarcomeric thin filaments in skeletal muscle.

  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. Myosin light chain phosphorylation enhances contraction of heart muscle via structural changes in both thick and thin filaments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kampourakis, Thomas; Sun, Yin-Biao; Irving, Malcolm

    2016-05-24

    Contraction of heart muscle is triggered by calcium binding to the actin-containing thin filaments but modulated by structural changes in the myosin-containing thick filaments. We used phosphorylation of the myosin regulatory light chain (cRLC) by the cardiac isoform of its specific kinase to elucidate mechanisms of thick filament-mediated contractile regulation in demembranated trabeculae from the rat right ventricle. cRLC phosphorylation enhanced active force and its calcium sensitivity and altered thick filament structure as reported by bifunctional rhodamine probes on the cRLC: the myosin head domains became more perpendicular to the filament axis. The effects of cRLC phosphorylation on thick filament structure and its calcium sensitivity were mimicked by increasing sarcomere length or by deleting the N terminus of the cRLC. Changes in thick filament structure were highly cooperative with respect to either calcium concentration or extent of cRLC phosphorylation. Probes on unphosphorylated myosin heads reported similar structural changes when neighboring heads were phosphorylated, directly demonstrating signaling between myosin heads. Moreover probes on troponin showed that calcium sensitization by cRLC phosphorylation is mediated by the thin filament, revealing a signaling pathway between thick and thin filaments that is still present when active force is blocked by Blebbistatin. These results show that coordinated and cooperative structural changes in the thick and thin filaments are fundamental to the physiological regulation of contractility in the heart. This integrated dual-filament concept of contractile regulation may aid understanding of functional effects of mutations in the protein components of both filaments associated with heart disease.

  18. 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...

  19. Thermal unfolding and aggregation of actin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levitsky, Dmitrii I; Pivovarova, Anastasiya V; Mikhailova, Valeria V; Nikolaeva, Olga P

    2008-09-01

    Actin is one of the most abundant proteins in nature. It is found in all eukaryotes and plays a fundamental role in many diverse and dynamic cellular processes. Also, actin is one of the most ubiquitous proteins because actin-like proteins have recently been identified in bacteria. Actin filament (F-actin) is a highly dynamic structure that can exist in different conformational states, and transitions between these states may be important in cytoskeletal dynamics and cell motility. These transitions can be modulated by various factors causing the stabilization or destabilization of actin filaments. In this review, we look at actin stabilization and destabilization as expressed by changes in the thermal stability of actin; specifically, we summarize and analyze the existing data on the thermal unfolding of actin as measured by differential scanning calorimetry. We also analyze in vitro data on the heat-induced aggregation of actin, the process that normally accompanies actin thermal denaturation. In this respect, we focus on the effects of small heat shock proteins, which can prevent the aggregation of thermally denatured actin with no effect on actin thermal unfolding. As a result, we have proposed a mechanism describing the thermal denaturation and aggregation of F-actin. This mechanism explains some of the special features of the thermal unfolding of actin filaments, including the effects of their stabilization and destabilization; it can also explain how small heat shock proteins protect the actin cytoskeleton from damage caused by the accumulation of large insoluble aggregates under heat shock conditions.

  20. 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...

  1. 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.

  2. Sarcomere Length Influences u-calpain Mediated Proteolysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muscle shortening and postmortem proteolysis both influence beef tenderness, but their interacting effects on tenderness are relatively unknown. Inherent myofibril structure and the extent of overlap between myosin and actin filaments are hypothesized to affect the availability of substrates for deg...

  3. 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.

  4. Constriction model of actomyosin ring for cytokinesis by fission yeast using a two-state sliding filament mechanism

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jung, Yong-Woon [Department of Chemistry, Texas A and M University, College Station, Texas 77843-3255 (United States); Mascagni, Michael, E-mail: Mascagni@fsu.edu [Departments of Computer Science, Mathematics and Scientific Computing, and Graduate Program in Molecular Biophysics, Florida State University, Tallahassee, Florida 32306-4530 (United States)

    2014-09-28

    We developed a model describing the structure and contractile mechanism of the actomyosin ring in fission yeast, Schizosaccharomyces pombe. The proposed ring includes actin, myosin, and α-actinin, and is organized into a structure similar to that of muscle sarcomeres. This structure justifies the use of the sliding-filament mechanism developed by Huxley and Hill, but it is probably less organized relative to that of muscle sarcomeres. Ring contraction tension was generated via the same fundamental mechanism used to generate muscle tension, but some physicochemical parameters were adjusted to be consistent with the proposed ring structure. Simulations allowed an estimate of ring constriction tension that reproduced the observed ring constriction velocity using a physiologically possible, self-consistent set of parameters. Proposed molecular-level properties responsible for the thousand-fold slower constriction velocity of the ring relative to that of muscle sarcomeres include fewer myosin molecules involved, a less organized contractile configuration, a low α-actinin concentration, and a high resistance membrane tension. Ring constriction velocity is demonstrated as an exponential function of time despite a near linear appearance. We proposed a hypothesis to explain why excess myosin heads inhibit constriction velocity rather than enhance it. The model revealed how myosin concentration and elastic resistance tension are balanced during cytokinesis in S. pombe.

  5. Constriction model of actomyosin ring for cytokinesis by fission yeast using a two-state sliding filament mechanism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jung, Yong-Woon; Mascagni, Michael

    2014-09-01

    We developed a model describing the structure and contractile mechanism of the actomyosin ring in fission yeast, Schizosaccharomyces pombe. The proposed ring includes actin, myosin, and α-actinin, and is organized into a structure similar to that of muscle sarcomeres. This structure justifies the use of the sliding-filament mechanism developed by Huxley and Hill, but it is probably less organized relative to that of muscle sarcomeres. Ring contraction tension was generated via the same fundamental mechanism used to generate muscle tension, but some physicochemical parameters were adjusted to be consistent with the proposed ring structure. Simulations allowed an estimate of ring constriction tension that reproduced the observed ring constriction velocity using a physiologically possible, self-consistent set of parameters. Proposed molecular-level properties responsible for the thousand-fold slower constriction velocity of the ring relative to that of muscle sarcomeres include fewer myosin molecules involved, a less organized contractile configuration, a low α-actinin concentration, and a high resistance membrane tension. Ring constriction velocity is demonstrated as an exponential function of time despite a near linear appearance. We proposed a hypothesis to explain why excess myosin heads inhibit constriction velocity rather than enhance it. The model revealed how myosin concentration and elastic resistance tension are balanced during cytokinesis in S. pombe.

  6. 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...

  7. Contractile activity is required for Z-disc sarcomere maturation in vivo

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geach, Timothy J; Hirst, Elizabeth MA; Zimmerman, Lyle B

    2015-01-01

    Sarcomere structure underpins structural integrity, signaling, and force transmission in the muscle. In embryos of the frog Xenopus tropicalis, muscle contraction begins even while sarcomerogenesis is ongoing. To determine whether contractile activity plays a role in sarcomere formation in vivo, chemical tools were used to block acto-myosin contraction in embryos of the frog X. tropicalis, and Z-disc assembly was characterized in the paralyzed dicky ticker mutant. Confocal and ultrastructure analysis of paralyzed embryos showed delayed Z-disc formation and defects in thick filament organization. These results suggest a previously undescribed role for contractility in sarcomere maturation in vivo. genesis 53:299–307, 2015. © 2015 The Authors. Genesis Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:25845369

  8. 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.

  9. 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...

  10. Interactions between connected half-sarcomeres produce emergent mechanical behavior in a mathematical model of muscle.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kenneth S Campbell

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available Most reductionist theories of muscle attribute a fiber's mechanical properties to the scaled behavior of a single half-sarcomere. Mathematical models of this type can explain many of the known mechanical properties of muscle but have to incorporate a passive mechanical component that becomes approximately 300% stiffer in activating conditions to reproduce the force response elicited by stretching a fast mammalian muscle fiber. The available experimental data suggests that titin filaments, which are the mostly likely source of the passive component, become at most approximately 30% stiffer in saturating Ca2+ solutions. The work described in this manuscript used computer modeling to test an alternative systems theory that attributes the stretch response of a mammalian fiber to the composite behavior of a collection of half-sarcomeres. The principal finding was that the stretch response of a chemically permeabilized rabbit psoas fiber could be reproduced with a framework consisting of 300 half-sarcomeres arranged in 6 parallel myofibrils without requiring titin filaments to stiffen in activating solutions. Ablation of inter-myofibrillar links in the computer simulations lowered isometric force values and lowered energy absorption during a stretch. This computed behavior mimics effects previously observed in experiments using muscles from desmin-deficient mice in which the connections between Z-disks in adjacent myofibrils are presumably compromised. The current simulations suggest that muscle fibers exhibit emergent properties that reflect interactions between half-sarcomeres and are not properties of a single half-sarcomere in isolation. It is therefore likely that full quantitative understanding of a fiber's mechanical properties requires detailed analysis of a complete fiber system and cannot be achieved by focusing solely on the properties of a single half-sarcomere.

  11. Interactions between connected half-sarcomeres produce emergent mechanical behavior in a mathematical model of muscle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, Kenneth S

    2009-11-01

    Most reductionist theories of muscle attribute a fiber's mechanical properties to the scaled behavior of a single half-sarcomere. Mathematical models of this type can explain many of the known mechanical properties of muscle but have to incorporate a passive mechanical component that becomes approximately 300% stiffer in activating conditions to reproduce the force response elicited by stretching a fast mammalian muscle fiber. The available experimental data suggests that titin filaments, which are the mostly likely source of the passive component, become at most approximately 30% stiffer in saturating Ca2+ solutions. The work described in this manuscript used computer modeling to test an alternative systems theory that attributes the stretch response of a mammalian fiber to the composite behavior of a collection of half-sarcomeres. The principal finding was that the stretch response of a chemically permeabilized rabbit psoas fiber could be reproduced with a framework consisting of 300 half-sarcomeres arranged in 6 parallel myofibrils without requiring titin filaments to stiffen in activating solutions. Ablation of inter-myofibrillar links in the computer simulations lowered isometric force values and lowered energy absorption during a stretch. This computed behavior mimics effects previously observed in experiments using muscles from desmin-deficient mice in which the connections between Z-disks in adjacent myofibrils are presumably compromised. The current simulations suggest that muscle fibers exhibit emergent properties that reflect interactions between half-sarcomeres and are not properties of a single half-sarcomere in isolation. It is therefore likely that full quantitative understanding of a fiber's mechanical properties requires detailed analysis of a complete fiber system and cannot be achieved by focusing solely on the properties of a single half-sarcomere.

  12. Structural Differences Explain Diverse Functions of Plasmodium Actins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vahokoski, Juha; Martinez, Silvia Muñico; Ignatev, Alexander; Lepper, Simone; Frischknecht, Friedrich; Sidén-Kiamos, Inga; Sachse, Carsten; Kursula, Inari

    2014-01-01

    Actins are highly conserved proteins and key players in central processes in all eukaryotic cells. The two actins of the malaria parasite are among the most divergent eukaryotic actins and also differ from each other more than isoforms in any other species. Microfilaments have not been directly observed in Plasmodium and are presumed to be short and highly dynamic. We show that actin I cannot complement actin II in male gametogenesis, suggesting critical structural differences. Cryo-EM reveals that Plasmodium actin I has a unique filament structure, whereas actin II filaments resemble canonical F-actin. Both Plasmodium actins hydrolyze ATP more efficiently than α-actin, and unlike any other actin, both parasite actins rapidly form short oligomers induced by ADP. Crystal structures of both isoforms pinpoint several structural changes in the monomers causing the unique polymerization properties. Inserting the canonical D-loop to Plasmodium actin I leads to the formation of long filaments in vitro. In vivo, this chimera restores gametogenesis in parasites lacking actin II, suggesting that stable filaments are required for exflagellation. Together, these data underline the divergence of eukaryotic actins and demonstrate how structural differences in the monomers translate into filaments with different properties, implying that even eukaryotic actins have faced different evolutionary pressures and followed different paths for developing their polymerization properties. PMID:24743229

  13. 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.

  14. Nebulin deficiency in adult muscle causes sarcomere defects and muscle-type-dependent changes in trophicity: novel insights in nemaline myopathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Frank; Buck, Danielle; De Winter, Josine; Kolb, Justin; Meng, Hui; Birch, Camille; Slater, Rebecca; Escobar, Yael Natelie; Smith, John E; Yang, Lin; Konhilas, John; Lawlor, Michael W; Ottenheijm, Coen; Granzier, Henk L

    2015-09-15

    Nebulin is a giant filamentous protein that is coextensive with the actin filaments of the skeletal muscle sarcomere. Nebulin mutations are the main cause of nemaline myopathy (NEM), with typical adult patients having low expression of nebulin, yet the roles of nebulin in adult muscle remain poorly understood. To establish nebulin's functional roles in adult muscle, we studied a novel conditional nebulin KO (Neb cKO) mouse model in which nebulin deletion was driven by the muscle creatine kinase (MCK) promotor. Neb cKO mice are born with high nebulin levels in their skeletal muscles, but within weeks after birth nebulin expression rapidly falls to barely detectable levels Surprisingly, a large fraction of the mice survive to adulthood with low nebulin levels (Muscles rich in glycolytic fibers upregulate proteolysis pathways (MuRF-1, Fbxo30/MUSA1, Gadd45a) and undergo hypotrophy with smaller cross-sectional areas (CSAs), worsening their force deficit. Muscles rich in oxidative fibers do not have smaller weights and can even have hypertrophy, offsetting their specific-force deficit. These studies reveal nebulin as critically important for force development and trophicity in adult muscle. The Neb cKO phenocopies important aspects of NEM (muscle weakness, oxidative fiber-type predominance, variable trophicity effects, nemaline rods) and will be highly useful to test therapeutic approaches to ameliorate muscle weakness. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  15. 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...

  16. 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.

  17. Sarcomere length influences u-calpain mediated proteolysis of troponin-T

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muscle shortening and postmortem proteolysis are well established as mechanisms controlling beef tenderness. Inherent myofibril structure and the extent of overlap between myosin and actin filaments are hypothesized to affect the availability of substrates for degradation by calpains. The objective ...

  18. 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.

  19. Actin binding proteins and spermiogenesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mruk, Dolores D

    2011-01-01

    Drebrin E, an actin-binding protein lacking intrinsic activity in the regulation of actin dynamics (e.g., polymerization, capping, nucleation, branching, cross-linking, bundling and severing), is known to recruit actin regulatory proteins to a specific cellular site. Herein, we critically evaluate recent findings in the field which illustrate that drebrin E works together with two other actin-binding proteins, namely Arp3 (actin-related protein 3, a component of the Arp2/3 complex that simultaneously controls actin nucleation for polymerization and branching of actin filaments) and Eps8 (epidermal growth factor receptor pathway substrate 8 that controls capping of the barbed ends of actin filaments, as well as actin filament bundling) to regulate the homeostasis of F-actin filament bundles at the ectoplasmic specialization (ES), a testis-specific atypical adherens junction (AJ) in the seminiferous epithelium. This is mediated by the strict temporal and spatial expression of these three actin-binding proteins at the apical and basal ES at the Sertoli cell-spermatid (step 8–19) and Sertoli-Sertoli cell interface, respectively, during the seminiferous epithelial cycle of spermatogenesis. In this Commentary, we put forth a possible model by which drebrin E may be acting as a platform upon which proteins (e.g., Arp3) that are needed to alter the conformation of actin filament bundles at the ES can be recruited to the site, thus facilitating changes in cell shape and cell position in the epithelium during spermiogenesis and spermiation. In short, drebrin E may be acting as a “logistic” distribution center to manage different regulatory proteins at the apical ES, thereby regulating the dynamics of actin filament bundles and modulating the plasticity of the apical ES. This would allow adhesion to be altered continuously throughout the epithelial cycle to accommodate spermatid movement in the seminiferous epithelium during spermiogenesis and spermiation. We also

  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. Force produced after stretch in sarcomeres and half-sarcomeres isolated from skeletal muscles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Minozzo, Fábio C.; Baroni, Bruno M.; Correa, José A.; Vaz, Marco A.; Rassier, Dilson E.

    2013-07-01

    The goal of this study was to evaluate if isolated sarcomeres and half-sarcomeres produce a long-lasting increase in force after a stretch is imposed during activation. Single and half-sarcomeres were isolated from myofibrils using micro-needles, which were also used for force measurements. After full force development, both preparations were stretched by different magnitudes. The sarcomere length (SL) or half-sarcomere length variations (HSL) were extracted by measuring the initial and final distances from the Z-line to the adjacent Z-line or to a region externally adjacent to the M-line of the sarcomere, respectively. Half-sarcomeres generated approximately the same amount of isometric force (29.0 +/- SD 15.5 nN.μm-2) as single sarcomeres (32.1 +/- SD 15.3 nN.μm-2) when activated. In both cases, the steady-state forces after stretch were higher than the forces during isometric contractions at similar conditions. The results suggest that stretch-induced force enhancement is partly caused by proteins within the half-sarcomere.

  3. Dendritic spine actin dynamics in neuronal maturation and synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hlushchenko, Iryna; Koskinen, Mikko; Hotulainen, Pirta

    2016-09-01

    The majority of the postsynaptic terminals of excitatory synapses in the central nervous system exist on small bulbous structures on dendrites known as dendritic spines. The actin cytoskeleton is a structural element underlying the proper development and morphology of dendritic spines. Synaptic activity patterns rapidly change actin dynamics, leading to morphological changes in dendritic spines. In this mini-review, we will discuss recent findings on neuronal maturation and synaptic plasticity-induced changes in the dendritic spine actin cytoskeleton. We propose that actin dynamics in dendritic spines decrease through actin filament crosslinking during neuronal maturation. In long-term potentiation, we evaluate the model of fast breakdown of actin filaments through severing and rebuilding through polymerization and later stabilization through crosslinking. We will discuss the role of Ca(2+) in long-term depression, and suggest that actin filaments are dissolved through actin filament severing. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  4. 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.

  5. Mechano-chemical Interactions in Cardiac Sarcomere Contraction: A Computational Modeling Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lumens, Joost; Arts, Theo; Delhaas, Tammo

    2016-01-01

    We developed a model of cardiac sarcomere contraction to study the calcium-tension relationship in cardiac muscle. Calcium mediates cardiac contraction through its interactions with troponin (Tn) and subsequently tropomyosin molecules. Experimental studies have shown that a slight increase in intracellular calcium concentration leads to a rapid increase in sarcomeric tension. Though it is widely accepted that the rapid increase is not possible without the concept of cooperativity, the mechanism is debated. We use the hypothesis that there exists a base level of cooperativity intrinsic to the thin filament that is boosted by mechanical tension, i.e. a high level of mechanical tension in the thin filament impedes the unbinding of calcium from Tn. To test these hypotheses, we developed a computational model in which a set of three parameters and inputs of calcium concentration and sarcomere length result in output tension. Tension as simulated appeared in good agreement with experimentally measured tension. Our results support the hypothesis that high tension in the thin filament impedes Tn deactivation by increasing the energy required to detach calcium from the Tn. Given this hypothesis, the model predicted that the areas with highest tension, i.e. closest to the Z-disk end of the single overlap region, show the largest concentration of active Tn’s. PMID:27716775

  6. A Continuum Model of Actin Waves in Dictyostelium discoideum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khamviwath, Varunyu; Hu, Jifeng; Othmer, Hans G.

    2013-01-01

    Actin waves are complex dynamical patterns of the dendritic network of filamentous actin in eukaryotes. We developed a model of actin waves in PTEN-deficient Dictyostelium discoideum by deriving an approximation of the dynamics of discrete actin filaments and combining it with a signaling pathway that controls filament branching. This signaling pathway, together with the actin network, contains a positive feedback loop that drives the actin waves. Our model predicts the structure, composition, and dynamics of waves that are consistent with existing experimental evidence, as well as the biochemical dependence on various protein partners. Simulation suggests that actin waves are initiated when local actin network activity, caused by an independent process, exceeds a certain threshold. Moreover, diffusion of proteins that form a positive feedback loop with the actin network alone is sufficient for propagation of actin waves at the observed speed of . Decay of the wave back can be caused by scarcity of network components, and the shape of actin waves is highly dependent on the filament disassembly rate. The model allows retraction of actin waves and captures formation of new wave fronts in broken waves. Our results demonstrate that a delicate balance between a positive feedback, filament disassembly, and local availability of network components is essential for the complex dynamics of actin waves. PMID:23741312

  7. Myofibril growth during cardiac hypertrophy is regulated through dual phosphorylation and acetylation of the actin capping protein CapZ.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Ying-Hsi; Warren, Chad M; Li, Jieli; McKinsey, Timothy A; Russell, Brenda

    2016-08-01

    The mechanotransduction signaling pathways initiated in heart muscle by increased mechanical loading are known to lead to long-term transcriptional changes and hypertrophy, but the rapid events for adaptation at the sarcomeric level are not fully understood. The goal of this study was to test the hypothesis that actin filament assembly during cardiomyocyte growth is regulated by post-translational modifications (PTMs) of CapZβ1. In rapidly hypertrophying neonatal rat ventricular myocytes (NRVMs) stimulated by phenylephrine (PE), two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2DGE) of CapZβ1 revealed a shift toward more negative charge. Consistent with this, mass spectrometry identified CapZβ1 phosphorylation on serine-204 and acetylation on lysine-199, two residues which are near the actin binding surface of CapZβ1. Ectopic expression of dominant negative PKCɛ (dnPKCɛ) in NRVMs blunted the PE-induced increase in CapZ dynamics, as evidenced by the kinetic constant (Kfrap) of fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP), and concomitantly reduced phosphorylation and acetylation of CapZβ1. Furthermore, inhibition of class I histone deacetylases (HDACs) increased lysine-199 acetylation on CapZβ1, which increased Kfrap of CapZ and stimulated actin dynamics. Finally, we show that PE treatment of NRVMs results in decreased binding of HDAC3 to myofibrils, suggesting a signal-dependent mechanism for the regulation of sarcomere-associated CapZβ1 acetylation. Taken together, this dual regulation through phosphorylation and acetylation of CapZβ1 provides a novel model for the regulation of myofibril growth during cardiac hypertrophy. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  8. 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

  9. 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 ...

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. C0 and C1 N-terminal Ig domains of myosin binding protein C exert different effects on thin filament activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris, Samantha P; Belknap, Betty; Van Sciver, Robert E; White, Howard D; Galkin, Vitold E

    2016-02-01

    Mutations in genes encoding myosin, the molecular motor that powers cardiac muscle contraction, and its accessory protein, cardiac myosin binding protein C (cMyBP-C), are the two most common causes of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). Recent studies established that the N-terminal domains (NTDs) of cMyBP-C (e.g., C0, C1, M, and C2) can bind to and activate or inhibit the thin filament (TF). However, the molecular mechanism(s) by which NTDs modulate interaction of myosin with the TF remains unknown and the contribution of each individual NTD to TF activation/inhibition is unclear. Here we used an integrated structure-function approach using cryoelectron microscopy, biochemical kinetics, and force measurements to reveal how the first two Ig-like domains of cMyPB-C (C0 and C1) interact with the TF. Results demonstrate that despite being structural homologs, C0 and C1 exhibit different patterns of binding on the surface of F-actin. Importantly, C1 but not C0 binds in a position to activate the TF by shifting tropomyosin (Tm) to the "open" structural state. We further show that C1 directly interacts with Tm and traps Tm in the open position on the surface of F-actin. Both C0 and C1 compete with myosin subfragment 1 for binding to F-actin and effectively inhibit actomyosin interactions when present at high ratios of NTDs to F-actin. Finally, we show that in contracting sarcomeres, the activating effect of C1 is apparent only once low levels of Ca(2+) have been achieved. We suggest that Ca(2+) modulates the interaction of cMyBP-C with the TF in the sarcomere.

  13. 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

  14. 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...

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. Non-Straub type actin from molluscan catch muscle

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shelud' ko, Nikolay S., E-mail: sheludko@stl.ru; Girich, Ulyana V.; Lazarev, Stanislav S.; Vyatchin, Ilya G.

    2016-05-27

    We have developed a method of obtaining natural actin from smooth muscles of the bivalves on the example of the Crenomytilus grayanus catch muscle. The muscles were previously rigorized to prevent a loss of thin filaments during homogenization and washings. Thin filaments were isolated with a low ionic strength solution in the presence of ATP and sodium pyrophosphate. Surface proteins of thin filaments-tropomyosin, troponin, calponin and some minor actin-binding proteins-were dissociated from actin filaments by increasing the ionic strength to 0.6 M KCL. Natural fibrillar actin obtained in that way depolymerizes easily in low ionic strength solutions commonly used for the extraction of Straub-type actin from acetone powder. Purification of natural actin was carried out by the polymerization–depolymerization cycle. The content of inactivated actin remaining in the supernatant is much less than at a similar purification of Straub-type actin. A comparative investigation was performed between the natural mussel actin and the Straub-type rabbit skeletal actin in terms of the key properties of actin: polymerization, activation of Mg-ATPase activity of myosin, and the electron-microscopic structure of actin polymers. -- Highlights: •We developed method of repolymerizable invertebrate smooth muscle actin obtaining. •Our method does not involve use of denaturating agents, which could modify proteins. •Viscosity and polymerization rate of actin, gained that way, is similar to Straub one. •Electron microscopy showed that repolymerized mussel actin is similar to Straub one. •Repolymerized mussel actin has greater ATPase activating capacity, than Straub actin.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. Actin Tyrosine-53-Phosphorylation in Neuronal Maturation and Synaptic Plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertling, Enni; Englund, Jonas; Minkeviciene, Rimante; Koskinen, Mikko; Segerstråle, Mikael; Castrén, Eero; Taira, Tomi; Hotulainen, Pirta

    2016-05-11

    Rapid reorganization and stabilization of the actin cytoskeleton in dendritic spines enables cellular processes underlying learning, such as long-term potentiation (LTP). Dendritic spines are enriched in exceptionally short and dynamic actin filaments, but the studies so far have not revealed the molecular mechanisms underlying the high actin dynamics in dendritic spines. Here, we show that actin in dendritic spines is dynamically phosphorylated at tyrosine-53 (Y53) in rat hippocampal and cortical neurons. Our findings show that actin phosphorylation increases the turnover rate of actin filaments and promotes the short-term dynamics of dendritic spines. During neuronal maturation, actin phosphorylation peaks at the first weeks of morphogenesis, when dendritic spines form, and the amount of Y53-phosphorylated actin decreases when spines mature and stabilize. Induction of LTP transiently increases the amount of phosphorylated actin and LTP induction is deficient in neurons expressing mutant actin that mimics phosphorylation. Actin phosphorylation provides a molecular mechanism to maintain the high actin dynamics in dendritic spines during neuronal development and to induce fast reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton in synaptic plasticity. In turn, dephosphorylation of actin is required for the stabilization of actin filaments that is necessary for proper dendritic spine maturation and LTP maintenance. Dendritic spines are small protrusions from neuronal dendrites where the postsynaptic components of most excitatory synapses reside. Precise control of dendritic spine morphology and density is critical for normal brain function. Accordingly, aberrant spine morphology is linked to many neurological diseases. The actin cytoskeleton is a structural element underlying the proper morphology of dendritic spines. Therefore, defects in the regulation of the actin cytoskeleton in neurons have been implicated in neurological diseases. Here, we revealed a novel mechanism for

  4. Titin strain contributes to the Frank-Starling law of the heart by structural rearrangements of both thin- and thick-filament proteins

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ait-Mou, Younss; Hsu, Karen; Farman, Gerrie P.; Kumar, Mohit; Greaser, Marion L.; Irving, Thomas C.; de Tombe, Pieter P. (UW); (Loyola); (IIT)

    2016-04-29

    We determined that the Frank–Starling mechanism of the heart is due, in part, to modulation of myofilament Ca2+ sensitivity by sarcomere length (SL) [length-dependent activation (LDA)]. The molecular mechanism(s) that underlie LDA are unknown. Recent evidence has implicated the giant protein titin in this cellular process, possibly by positioning the myosin head closer to actin. To clarify the role of titin strain in LDA, we isolated myocardium from either WT or homozygous mutant (HM) rats that express a giant splice isoform of titin, and subjected the muscles to stretch from 2.0 to 2.4 μm of SL. Upon stretch, HM compared with WT muscles displayed reduced passive force, twitch force, and myofilament LDA. Time-resolved small-angle X-ray diffraction measurements of WT twitching muscles during diastole revealed stretch-induced increases in the intensity of myosin (M2 and M6) and troponin (Tn3) reflections, as well as a reduction in cross-bridge radial spacing. Independent fluorescent probe analyses in relaxed permeabilized myocytes corroborated these findings. X-ray electron density reconstruction revealed increased mass/ordering in both thick and thin filaments. The SL-dependent changes in structure observed in WT myocardium were absent in HM myocardium. Our results reveal a correlation between titin strain and the Frank–Starling mechanism. The molecular basis underlying this phenomenon appears not to involve interfilament spacing or movement of myosin toward actin but, rather, sarcomere stretch-induced simultaneous structural rearrangements within both thin and thick filaments that correlate with titin strain and myofilament LDA.

  5. Titin strain contributes to the Frank-Starling law of the heart by structural rearrangements of both thin- and thick-filament proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ait-Mou, Younss; Hsu, Karen; Farman, Gerrie P; Kumar, Mohit; Greaser, Marion L; Irving, Thomas C; de Tombe, Pieter P

    2016-02-23

    The Frank-Starling mechanism of the heart is due, in part, to modulation of myofilament Ca(2+) sensitivity by sarcomere length (SL) [length-dependent activation (LDA)]. The molecular mechanism(s) that underlie LDA are unknown. Recent evidence has implicated the giant protein titin in this cellular process, possibly by positioning the myosin head closer to actin. To clarify the role of titin strain in LDA, we isolated myocardium from either WT or homozygous mutant (HM) rats that express a giant splice isoform of titin, and subjected the muscles to stretch from 2.0 to 2.4 μm of SL. Upon stretch, HM compared with WT muscles displayed reduced passive force, twitch force, and myofilament LDA. Time-resolved small-angle X-ray diffraction measurements of WT twitching muscles during diastole revealed stretch-induced increases in the intensity of myosin (M2 and M6) and troponin (Tn3) reflections, as well as a reduction in cross-bridge radial spacing. Independent fluorescent probe analyses in relaxed permeabilized myocytes corroborated these findings. X-ray electron density reconstruction revealed increased mass/ordering in both thick and thin filaments. The SL-dependent changes in structure observed in WT myocardium were absent in HM myocardium. Overall, our results reveal a correlation between titin strain and the Frank-Starling mechanism. The molecular basis underlying this phenomenon appears not to involve interfilament spacing or movement of myosin toward actin but, rather, sarcomere stretch-induced simultaneous structural rearrangements within both thin and thick filaments that correlate with titin strain and myofilament LDA.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. Elastic energy storage and radial forces in the myofilament lattice depend on sarcomere length.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C David Williams

    Full Text Available We most often consider muscle as a motor generating force in the direction of shortening, but less often consider its roles as a spring or a brake. Here we develop a fully three-dimensional spatially explicit model of muscle to isolate the locations of forces and energies that are difficult to separate experimentally. We show the strain energy in the thick and thin filaments is less than one third the strain energy in attached cross-bridges. This result suggests the cross-bridges act as springs, storing energy within muscle in addition to generating the force which powers muscle. Comparing model estimates of energy consumed to elastic energy stored, we show that the ratio of these two properties changes with sarcomere length. The model predicts storage of a greater fraction of energy at short sarcomere lengths, suggesting a mechanism by which muscle function shifts as force production declines, from motor to spring. Additionally, we investigate the force that muscle produces in the radial or transverse direction, orthogonal to the direction of shortening. We confirm prior experimental estimates that place radial forces on the same order of magnitude as axial forces, although we find that radial forces and axial forces vary differently with changes in sarcomere length.

  10. Myosin Assembly, Maintenance and Degradation in Muscle: Role of the Chaperone UNC-45 in Myosin Thick Filament Dynamics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David B. Pilgrim

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available Myofibrillogenesis in striated muscle cells requires a precise ordered pathway to assemble different proteins into a linear array of sarcomeres. The sarcomere relies on interdigitated thick and thin filaments to ensure muscle contraction, as well as properly folded and catalytically active myosin head. Achieving this organization requires a series of protein folding and assembly steps. The folding of the myosin head domain requires chaperone activity to attain its functional conformation. Folded or unfolded myosin can spontaneously assemble into short myosin filaments, but further assembly requires the short and incomplete myosin filaments to assemble into the developing thick filament. These longer filaments are then incorporated into the developing sarcomere of the muscle. Both myosin folding and assembly require factors to coordinate the formation of the thick filament in the sarcomere and these factors include chaperone molecules. Myosin folding and sarcomeric assembly requires association of classical chaperones as well as folding cofactors such as UNC-45. Recent research has suggested that UNC-45 is required beyond initial myosin head folding and may be directly or indirectly involved in different stages of myosin thick filament assembly, maintenance and degradation.

  11. Targeting of nebulin fragments to the cardiac sarcomere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panaviene, Zivile; Deng, Xiaodi A; Esham, Michael; Moncman, Carole L

    2007-03-10

    Nebulin, a vertebrate skeletal muscle actin binding protein, plays an important role in thin filament architecture. Recently, a number of reports have indicated evidence for nebulin expression in vertebrate hearts. To investigate the ability of nebulin to interact with cardiac myofilaments, we have expressed nebulin cDNA fragments tagged with green fluorescent protein (GFP) in chicken cardiomyocytes and PtK2 cells. Nebulin fragments from both the superrepeats and single repeats were expressed minus and plus the nebulin linker. Nebulin fragment incorporation was monitored by fluorescent microscopy and compared with the distribution of actin, alpha-actinin and titin. Expression of nebulin N-terminal superrepeats displayed a punctate cytoplasmic distribution in PtK2 cells and cardiomyocytes. Addition of the nebulin linker to the superrepeats resulted in association of the punctate staining with the myofibrils. Nebulin C-terminal superrepeats plus and minus the linker localized with stress fibers of PtK2 cells and associated with the cardiac myofilaments at the level of the Z-line. Expression of the single repeats plus and minus the nebulin linker region resulted in both a Z-line distribution and an A-band distribution. These data suggest that N-terminal superrepeat nebulin modules are incapable of supporting interactions with the cardiac myofilaments; whereas the C-terminal nebulin modules can. The expression of the N-terminal or C-terminal superrepeats did not alter the distribution of actin, alpha-actinin or titin in either atrial or ventricular cultures.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Change in the actin cytoskeleton during seismonastic movement of Mimosa pudica.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kanzawa, Nobuyuki; Hoshino, Yoshinori; Chiba, Makiko; Hoshino, Daisuke; Kobayashi, Hidetaka; Kamasawa, Naomi; Kishi, Yoshiro; Osumi, Masako; Sameshima, Masazumi; Tsuchiya, Takahide

    2006-04-01

    The seismonastic movement of Mimosa pudica is triggered by a sudden loss of turgor pressure. In the present study, we compared the cell cytoskeleton by immunofluorescence analysis before and after movement, and the effects of actin- and microtubule-targeted drugs were examined by injecting them into the cut pulvinus. We found that fragmentation of actin filaments and microtubules occurs during bending, although the actin cytoskeleton, but not the microtubules, was involved in regulation of the movement. Transmission electron microscopy revealed that actin cables became loose after the bending. We injected phosphatase inhibitors into the severed pulvinus to examine the effects of such inhibitors on the actin cytoskeleton. We found that changes in actin isoforms, fragmentation of actin filaments and the bending movement were all inhibited after injection of a tyrosine phosphatase inhibitor. We thus propose that the phosphorylation status of actin at tyrosine residues affects the dynamic reorganization of actin filaments and causes seismonastic movement.

  15. Cytoskeletal actin dynamics shape a ramifying actin network underpinning immunological synapse formation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fritzsche, Marco; Fernandes, Ricardo A.; Chang, Veronica T.

    2017-01-01

    . This network shows all the characteristics of an inward-growing transportation network and its dynamics correlating with T cell receptor rearrangements. This actin reorganization is accompanied by an increase in the nanoscale actin meshwork size and the dynamic adjustment of the turnover times and filament...... lengths of two differently sized filamentous actin populations, wherein forminmediated long actin filaments support a very flat and stiff contact at the immunological synapse interface. The initiation of immunological synapse formation, as highlighted by calcium release, requires markedly little contact...... with activating surfaces and no cytoskeletal rearrangements. Our work suggests that incipient signaling in T cells initiates global cytoskeletal rearrangements across the whole cell, including a stiffening process for possibly mechanically supporting contact formation at the immunological synapse interface...

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  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.

    2012-01-01

    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. PMID:22904322

  20. Force-induced dynamical properties of multiple cytoskeletal filaments are distinct from that of single filaments

    CERN Document Server

    Das, Dipjyoti; Padinhateeri, Ranjith

    2014-01-01

    How cytoskeletal filaments collectively undergo growth and shrinkage is an intriguing question. Collective properties of multiple bio-filaments (actin or microtubules) undergoing hydrolysis, have not been studied extensively earlier, within simple theoretical frameworks. In this paper, we show that collective properties of multiple filaments under force are very distinct from the properties of a single filament under similar conditions -- these distinctions manifest as follows: (i) the collapse time during collective catastrophe for a multifilament system is much larger than that of a single filament with the same average length, (ii) force-dependence of the cap-size distribution of multiple filaments are quantitatively different from that of single filament, (iii) the diffusion constant associated with the system length fluctuations is distinct for multiple filaments, (iv) switching dynamics of multiple filaments between capped and uncapped states and the fluctuations therein are also distinct. We build a un...

  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. Actin: Structure, Function, Dynamics, and Interactions with Bacterial Toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kühn, Sonja; Mannherz, Hans Georg

    Actin is one of the most abundant proteins in any eukaryotic cell and an indispensable component of the cytoskeleton. In mammalian organisms, six highly conserved actin isoforms can be distinguished, which differ by only a few amino acids. In non-muscle cells, actin polymerizes into actin filaments that form actin structures essential for cell shape stabilization, and participates in a number of motile activities like intracellular vesicle transport, cytokinesis, and also cell locomotion. Here, we describe the structure of monomeric and polymeric actin, the polymerization kinetics, and its regulation by actin-binding proteins. Probably due to its conserved nature and abundance, actin and its regulating factors have emerged as prefered targets of bacterial toxins and effectors, which subvert the host actin cytoskeleton to serve bacterial needs.

  4. 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.

  5. Breaking sarcomeres by in vitro exercise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orfanos, Zacharias; Gödderz, Markus P O; Soroka, Ekaterina; Gödderz, Tobias; Rumyantseva, Anastasia; van der Ven, Peter F M; Hawke, Thomas J; Fürst, Dieter O

    2016-01-25

    Eccentric exercise leads to focal disruptions in the myofibrils, referred to as "lesions". These structures are thought to contribute to the post-exercise muscle weakness, and to represent areas of mechanical damage and/or remodelling. Lesions have been investigated in human biopsies and animal samples after exercise. However, this approach does not examine the mechanisms behind lesion formation, or their behaviour during contraction. To circumvent this, we used electrical pulse stimulation (EPS) to simulate exercise in C2C12 myotubes, combined with live microscopy. EPS application led to the formation of sarcomeric lesions in the myotubes, resembling those seen in exercised mice, increasing in number with the time of application or stimulation intensity. Furthermore, transfection with an EGFP-tagged version of the lesion and Z-disc marker filamin-C allowed us to observe the formation of lesions using live cell imaging. Finally, using the same technique we studied the behaviour of these structures during contraction, and observed them to be passively stretching. This passive behaviour supports the hypothesis that lesions contribute to the post-exercise muscle weakness, protecting against further damage. We conclude that EPS can be reliably used as a model for the induction and study of sarcomeric lesions in myotubes in vitro.

  6. KLHL41 stabilizes skeletal muscle sarcomeres by nonproteolytic ubiquitination

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramirez-Martinez, Andres; Cenik, Bercin Kutluk; Bezprozvannaya, Svetlana; Chen, Beibei; Bassel-Duby, Rhonda

    2017-01-01

    Maintenance of muscle function requires assembly of contractile proteins into highly organized sarcomeres. Mutations in Kelch-like protein 41 (KLHL41) cause nemaline myopathy, a fatal muscle disorder associated with sarcomere disarray. We generated KLHL41 mutant mice, which display lethal disruption of sarcomeres and aberrant expression of muscle structural and contractile proteins, mimicking the hallmarks of the human disease. We show that KLHL41 is poly-ubiquitinated and acts, at least in part, by preventing aggregation and degradation of Nebulin, an essential component of the sarcomere. Furthermore, inhibition of KLHL41 poly-ubiquitination prevents its stabilization of nebulin, suggesting a unique role for ubiquitination in protein stabilization. These findings provide new insights into the molecular etiology of nemaline myopathy and reveal a mechanism whereby KLHL41 stabilizes sarcomeres and maintains muscle function by acting as a molecular chaperone. Similar mechanisms for protein stabilization likely contribute to the actions of other Kelch proteins. PMID:28826497

  7. 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.

  8. Growing actin networks regulated by obstacle size and shape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gong, Bo; Lin, Ji; Qian, Jin

    2017-01-01

    Growing actin networks provide the driving force for the motility of cells and intracellular pathogens. Based on the molecular-level processes of actin polymerization, branching, capping, and depolymerization, we have developed a modeling framework to simulate the stochastic and cooperative behaviors of growing actin networks in propelling obstacles, with an emphasis on the size and shape effects on work capacity and filament orientation in the growing process. Our results show that the characteristic size of obstacles changes the protrusion power per unit length, without influencing the orientation distribution of actin filaments in growing networks. In contrast, the geometry of obstacles has a profound effect on filament patterning, which influences the orientation of filaments differently when the drag coefficient of environment is small, intermediate, or large. We also discuss the role of various parameters, such as the aspect ratio of obstacles, branching rate, and capping rate, in affecting the protrusion power of network growth.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    1998-06-01

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

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. Evaluation of the flanking nucleotide sequences of sarcomeric hypertrophic cardiomyopathy substitution mutations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meurs, Kathryn M; Mealey, Katrina L

    2008-07-03

    Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is a familial myocardial disease with a prevalence of 1 in 500. More than 400 causative mutations have been identified in 13 sarcomeric and myofilament related genes, 350 of these are substitution mutations within eight sarcomeric genes. Within a population, examples of recurring identical disease causing mutations that appear to have arisen independently have been noted as well as those that appear to have been inherited from a common ancestor. The large number of novel HCM mutations could suggest a mechanism of increased mutability within the sarcomeric genes. The objective of this study was to evaluate the most commonly reported HCM genes, beta myosin heavy chain (MYH7), myosin binding protein C, troponin I, troponin T, cardiac regulatory myosin light chain, cardiac essential myosin light chain, alpha tropomyosin and cardiac alpha-actin for sequence patterns surrounding the substitution mutations that may suggest a mechanism of increased mutability. The mutations as well as the 10 flanking nucleotides were evaluated for frequency of di-, tri- and tetranucleotides containing the mutation as well as for the presence of certain tri- and tetranculeotide motifs. The most common substitutions were guanine (G) to adenine (A) and cytosine (C) to thymidine (T). The CG dinucleotide had a significantly higher relative mutability than any other dinucleotide (pmutation was calculated; none were at a statistically higher frequency than the others. The large number of G to A and C to T mutations as well as the relative mutability of CG may suggest that deamination of methylated CpG is an important mechanism for mutation development in at least some of these cardiac genes.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Contractile Units in Disordered Actomyosin Bundles Arise from F-Actin Buckling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenz, Martin; Thoresen, Todd; Gardel, Margaret L.; Dinner, Aaron R.

    2012-06-01

    Bundles of filaments and motors are central to contractility in cells. The classic example is striated muscle, where actomyosin contractility is mediated by highly organized sarcomeres which act as fundamental contractile units. However, many contractile bundles in vivo and in vitro lack sarcomeric organization. Here we propose a model for how contractility can arise in bundles without sarcomeric organization and validate its predictions with experiments on a reconstituted system. In the model, internal stresses in frustrated arrangements of motors with diverse velocities cause filaments to buckle, leading to overall shortening. We describe the onset of buckling in the presence of stochastic motor head detachment and predict that buckling-induced contraction occurs in an intermediate range of motor densities. We then calculate the size of the “contractile units” associated with this process. Consistent with these results, our reconstituted actomyosin bundles show contraction at relatively high motor density, and we observe buckling at the predicted length scale.

  17. 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...

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Muscle myosin filaments: cores, crowns and couplings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Squire, John M

    2009-09-01

    Myosin filaments in muscle, carrying the ATPase myosin heads that interact with actin filaments to produce force and movement, come in multiple varieties depending on species and functional need, but most are based on a common structural theme. The now successful journeys to solve the ultrastructures of many of these myosin filaments, at least at modest resolution, have not been without their false starts and erroneous sidetracks, but the picture now emerging is of both diversity in the rotational symmetries of different filaments and a degree of commonality in the way the myosin heads are organised in resting muscle. Some of the remaining differences may be associated with how the muscle is regulated. Several proteins in cardiac muscle myosin filaments can carry mutations associated with heart disease, so the elucidation of myosin filament structure to understand the effects of these mutations has a clear and topical clinical relevance.

  2. 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...

  3. 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.

  4. Microrheology of active actin networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larsen, Travis H.; Furst, Eric M.

    2006-03-01

    To provide insight into the viscoelastic response of non-equilibrium, entangled semi-flexible polymeric networks, we study the model system of F-actin networks in the presence of active fragments of skeletal myosin. To characterize the microrheological response of this system, polystyrene microspheres of 1μm in diameter are suspended into the three-dimensional, entangled F-actin network and diffusing wave spectroscopy is used to measure the mean-squared displacement of the particles on timescales from 100ns to 10ms. Particle motion is a result of both random thermal forces and the dissipation of actin filament fluctuations caused by the interactions of the suspended motor proteins with the network. Upon addition of myosin, we observe an increase in the MSD of the tracer particles and a shift in the scaling--dependence with respect to lag time from t^3/4 to t^x, where 3/4 motor proteins cause the filaments to develop an apparent decreased persistence length at length scales longer than the crossover length. Finally, we demonstrate that the addition of the cross-linking protein, α-actinin, suppresses this ``active'' scaling behavior, while maintaining elevated probe particle diffusivity relative to the control.

  5. Contractile Dysfunction in Sarcomeric Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacIver, David H; Clark, Andrew L

    2016-09-01

    The pathophysiological mechanisms underlying the clinical phenotype of sarcomeric hypertrophic cardiomyopathy are controversial. The development of cardiac hypertrophy in hypertension and aortic stenosis is usually described as a compensatory mechanism that normalizes wall stress. We suggest that an important abnormality in hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is reduced contractile stress (the force per unit area) generated by myocardial tissue secondary to abnormalities such as cardiomyocyte disarray. In turn, a progressive deterioration in contractile stress provokes worsening hypertrophy and disarray. A maintained or even exaggerated ejection fraction is explained by the increased end-diastolic wall thickness producing augmented thickening. We propose that the nature of the hemodynamic load in an individual with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy could determine its phenotype. Hypertensive patients with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy are more likely to develop exaggerated concentric hypertrophy; athletic individuals an asymmetric pattern; and inactive individuals a more apical hypertrophy. The development of a left ventricular outflow tract gradient and mitral regurgitation may be explained by differential regional strain resulting in mitral annular rotation.

  6. Helical filaments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2014-06-30

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

  7. Elasticity of Rigidly Cross-Linked Networks of Athermal Filaments

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zagar, Goran; Onck, Patrick R.; Van der Giessen, Erik

    2011-01-01

    Actin filaments assemble into network-like structures and play an important role in various cellular mechanical processes. It is known that the response of actin networks cross-linked by stiff proteins is characterized by two distinct regimes: (i) a linear stress strain response for small deformatio

  8. 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.

  9. Plant actin controls membrane permeability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hohenberger, Petra; Eing, Christian; Straessner, Ralf; Durst, Steffen; Frey, Wolfgang; Nick, Peter

    2011-09-01

    The biological effects of electric pulses with low rise time, high field strength, and durations in the nanosecond range (nsPEFs) have attracted considerable biotechnological and medical interest. However, the cellular mechanisms causing membrane permeabilization by nanosecond pulsed electric fields are still far from being understood. We investigated the role of actin filaments for membrane permeability in plant cells using cell lines where different degrees of actin bundling had been introduced by genetic engineering. We demonstrate that stabilization of actin increases the stability of the plasma membrane against electric permeabilization recorded by penetration of Trypan Blue into the cytoplasm. By use of a cell line expressing the actin bundling WLIM domain under control of an inducible promotor we can activate membrane stabilization by the glucocorticoid analog dexamethasone. By total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy we can visualize a subset of the cytoskeleton that is directly adjacent to the plasma membrane. We conclude that this submembrane cytoskeleton stabilizes the plasma membrane against permeabilization through electric pulses. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  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. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  19. Specific cleavage of the DNase-I binding loop dramatically decreases the thermal stability of actin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pivovarova, Anastasia V; Khaitlina, Sofia Yu; Levitsky, Dmitrii I

    2010-09-01

    Differential scanning calorimetry was used to investigate the thermal unfolding of actin specifically cleaved within the DNaseI-binding loop between residues Met47-Gly48 or Gly42-Val43 by two bacterial proteases, subtilisin or ECP32/grimelysin (ECP), respectively. The results obtained show that both cleavages strongly decreased the thermal stability of monomeric actin with either ATP or ADP as a bound nucleotide. An even more pronounced difference in the thermal stability between the cleaved and intact actin was observed when both actins were polymerized into filaments. Similar to intact F-actin, both cleaved F-actins were significantly stabilized by phalloidin and aluminum fluoride; however, in all cases, the thermal stability of the cleaved F-actins was much lower than that of intact F-actin, and the stability of ECP-cleaved F-actin was lower than that of subtilisin-cleaved F-actin. These results confirm that the DNaseI-binding loop is involved in the stabilization of the actin structure, both in monomers and in the filament subunits, and suggest that the thermal stability of actin depends, at least partially, on the conformation of the nucleotide-binding cleft. Moreover, an additional destabilization of the unstable cleaved actin upon ATP/ADP replacement provides experimental evidence for the highly dynamic actin structure that cannot be simply open or closed, but rather should be considered as being able to adopt multiple conformations. © 2010 The Authors Journal compilation © 2010 FEBS.

  20. Subtle abnormalities in contractile function are an early manifestation of sarcomere mutations in dilated cardiomyopathy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lakdawala, Neal K; Thune, Jens J; Colan, Steven D;

    2012-01-01

    Sarcomere mutations cause both dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM); however, the steps leading from mutation to disease are not well described. By studying mutation carriers before a clinical diagnosis develops, we characterize the early manifestations of sarcomere ...

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. 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+).

  4. 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.

  5. A unique profilin-actin interface is important for malaria parasite motility.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Catherine A Moreau

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Profilin is an actin monomer binding protein that provides ATP-actin for incorporation into actin filaments. In contrast to higher eukaryotic cells with their large filamentous actin structures, apicomplexan parasites typically contain only short and highly dynamic microfilaments. In apicomplexans, profilin appears to be the main monomer-sequestering protein. Compared to classical profilins, apicomplexan profilins contain an additional arm-like β-hairpin motif, which we show here to be critically involved in actin binding. Through comparative analysis using two profilin mutants, we reveal this motif to be implicated in gliding motility of Plasmodium berghei sporozoites, the rapidly migrating forms of a rodent malaria parasite transmitted by mosquitoes. Force measurements on migrating sporozoites and molecular dynamics simulations indicate that the interaction between actin and profilin fine-tunes gliding motility. Our data suggest that evolutionary pressure to achieve efficient high-speed gliding has resulted in a unique profilin-actin interface in these parasites.

  6. 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.

  7. Superhelical architecture of the myosin filament-linking protein myomesin with unusual elastic properties.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nikos Pinotsis

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Active muscles generate substantial mechanical forces by the contraction/relaxation cycle, and, to maintain an ordered state, they require molecular structures of extraordinary stability. These forces are sensed and buffered by unusually long and elastic filament proteins with highly repetitive domain arrays. Members of the myomesin protein family function as molecular bridges that connect major filament systems in the central M-band of muscle sarcomeres, which is a central locus of passive stress sensing. To unravel the mechanism of molecular elasticity in such filament-connecting proteins, we have determined the overall architecture of the complete C-terminal immunoglobulin domain array of myomesin by X-ray crystallography, electron microscopy, solution X-ray scattering, and atomic force microscopy. Our data reveal a dimeric tail-to-tail filament structure of about 360 Å in length, which is folded into an irregular superhelical coil arrangement of almost identical α-helix/domain modules. The myomesin filament can be stretched to about 2.5-fold its original length by reversible unfolding of these linkers, a mechanism that to our knowledge has not been observed previously. Our data explain how myomesin could act as a highly elastic ribbon to maintain the overall structural organization of the sarcomeric M-band. In general terms, our data demonstrate how repetitive domain modules such as those found in myomesin could generate highly elastic protein structures in highly organized cell systems such as muscle sarcomeres.

  8. Titin Isoform Size is Not Correlated with Thin Filament Length in Rat Skeletal Muscle

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    Marion Lewis Greaser

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available The mechanisms controlling thin filament length in muscle remain controversial. It was recently reported that thin filament length was related to titin size, and that the latter might be involved in thin filament length determination. Titin plays several crucial roles in the sarcomere, but its function as it pertains to the thin filament has not been explored. We tested this relationship using several muscles from wild type rats and from a mutant rat model which results in increased titin size. Myofibrils were isolated from skeletal muscles (extensor digitorum longus, external oblique, gastrocnemius, longissimus dorsi, psoas major, and tibialis anterior using both adult wild type (WT and homozygous mutant (HM rats. Phalloidin and antibodies against tropomodulin-4 and nebulin’s N-terminus were used to determine thin filament length. The WT rats studied express skeletal muscle titin sizes ranging from 3.2 to 3.7 MDa, while the HM rats express a giant titin isoform sized at 3.7 MDa. No differences in phalloidin-based thin filament length, nebulin N terminus distances from the Z line, or tropomodulin distances from the Z line were observed across genotypes. The data indicates that, although titin performs many sarcomeric functions, its correlation with thin filament length and structure could not be demonstrated in the rat. Current models of thin filament assembly are inadequate to explain the phalloidin, nebulin N terminus, and tropomodulin staining patterns in the myofibril.

  9. Diaphragm weakness in pulmonary arterial hypertension: role of sarcomeric dysfunction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Manders, E.; Man, F.S. de; Handoko, M.L.; Westerhof, N.; Hees, H.W.H. van; Stienen, G.J.; Vonk-Noordegraaf, A.; Ottenheijm, C.A.C.

    2012-01-01

    We previously demonstrated that diaphragm muscle weakness is present in experimental pulmonary arterial hypertension (PH). However, the nature of this diaphragm weakness is still unknown. Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate whether changes at the sarcomeric level contribute to diaphr

  10. Postmortem Pathological Changes of Actin in Skeletal Muscles of Rats%大鼠骨骼肌肌动蛋白在死亡后的形态学变化

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    刘杨; 苗宇船; 王英元

    2012-01-01

    目的 探讨大鼠骨骼肌肌动蛋白纤维的形态学变化与死亡时间的相关性.方法 分别采用激光扫描共聚焦显微镜和透射电镜对大鼠死后不同时间骨骼肌(右后肢的内收大肌)肌动蛋白纤维的形态学变化进行观察.结果 大鼠死后,透射电镜观察可见由肌动蛋白构成的细肌丝逐渐崩解、紊乱,直至肌小节和细肌丝结构消失;激光扫描共聚焦显微镜观察可见,自死后24 h起,骨骼肌纤维横纹可有小片状或弥漫状抗肌动蛋白抗体缺染灶出现,并且抗肌动蛋白抗体染色面积随着死亡时间的延长而逐渐减少,其变化趋势与死亡时间相关(Y=0.934 -0.005X,R2=0.95,P<0.05);大鼠死后168 h内,肌动蛋白阳性产物的积分光密度值随死亡时间的延长而逐渐降低,组间差异均具有统计学意义(P<0.05),至死后168 h,几乎无抗肌动蛋白抗体染色.结论 大鼠骨骼肌肌动蛋白纤维的形态学改变与死亡时间具有相关性.%Objective To investigate the morphologic changes of actin in skeletal muscles of rats associated with postmortem interval (PMI). Methods The morphologic changes of actin filament in the skeletal muscles (adductor magnus of right hind leg) of 28 rats were observed by laser scanning confocal microscope (LSCM) and transmission electron microscope (TEM) at different postmortem intervals (0, 24, 48, 72, 96, 120 and 168 h). Results The TEM revealed that actin filament began to disintegrate with the lapse of PMI, and eventually the structure of sarcomere and actin filament disappeared. The LSCM showed depletion of anti-actin antibody staining in the skeletal muscles and the extent of staining decreased with extension of PMI correlatively (Y = 0. 934 - 0. 005X, R2 =0. 95, P<0. 05). The content of actin positive products reduced with PMI (P<0. 05). No actin positive products were detected 168 h after death. Conclusion The morphologic changes of actin filament in skeletal muscles may become

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

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    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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Connectin filaments in stretched skinned fibers of frog skeletal muscle

    Science.gov (United States)

    1984-01-01

    Indirect immunofluorescence microscopy of highly stretched skinned frog semi-tendinous muscle fibers revealed that connectin, an elastic protein of muscle, is located in the gap between actin and myosin filaments and also in the region of myosin filaments except in their centers. Electron microscopic observations showed that there were easily recognizable filaments extending from the myosin filaments to the I band region and to Z lines in the myofibrils treated with antiserum against connectin. In thin sections prepared with tannic acid, very thin filaments connected myosin filaments to actin filaments. These filaments were also observed in myofibrils extracted with a modified Hasselbach-Schneider solution (0.6 M KCl, 0.1 M phosphate buffer, pH 6.5, 2 mM ATP, 2 mM MgCl2, and 1 mM EGTA) and with 0.6 M Kl. SDS PAGE revealed that connectin (also called titin) remained in extracted myofibrils. We suggest that connectin filaments play an important role in the generation of tension upon passive stretch. A scheme of the cytoskeletal structure of myofibrils of vertebrate skeletal muscle is presented on the basis of our present information of connectin and intermediate filaments. PMID:6384237

  15. Imaging the bipolarity of myosin filaments with Interferometric Second Harmonic Generation microscopy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rivard, Maxime; Couture, Charles-André; Miri, Amir K; Laliberté, Mathieu; Bertrand-Grenier, Antony; Mongeau, Luc; Légaré, François

    2013-01-01

    We report that combining interferometry with Second Harmonic Generation (SHG) microscopy provides valuable information about the relative orientation of noncentrosymmetric structures composing tissues. This is confirmed through the imaging of rat medial gastrocnemius muscle. The inteferometric Second Harmonic Generation (ISHG) images reveal that each side of the myosin filaments composing the A band of the sarcomere generates π phase shifted SHG signal which implies that the myosin proteins at each end of the filaments are oriented in opposite directions. This highlights the bipolar structural organization of the myosin filaments and shows that muscles can be considered as a periodically poled biological structure.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. Dissociative mechanism of F-actin thermal denaturation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mikhailova, V V; Kurganov, B I; Pivovarova, A V; Levitsky, D I

    2006-11-01

    We have applied differential scanning calorimetry to investigate thermal unfolding of F-actin. It has been shown that the thermal stability of F-actin strongly depends on ADP concentration. The transition temperature, T(m), increases with increasing ADP concentration up to 1 mM. The T(m) value also depends on the concentration of F-actin: it increases by almost 3 degrees C as the F-actin concentration is increased from 0.5 to 2.0 mg/ml. Similar dependence of the T(m) value on protein concentration was demonstrated for F-actin stabilized by phalloidin, whereas it was much less pronounced in the presence of AlF4(-). However, T(m) was independent of protein concentration in the case of monomeric G-actin. The results suggest that at least two reversible stages precede irreversible thermal denaturation of F-actin; one of them is dissociation of ADP from actin subunits, and another is dissociation of subunits from the ends of actin filaments. The model explains why unfolding of F-actin depends on both ADP and protein concentration.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. C. elegans SORB-1 localizes to integrin adhesion sites and is required for organization of sarcomeres and mitochondria in myocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loveless, Timothy; Qadota, Hiroshi; Benian, Guy M; Hardin, Jeff

    2017-10-04

    We have identified and characterized sorb-1, the only Sorbin and SH3 domain-containing protein family member in C. elegans SORB-1 is strongly localized to integrin adhesion complexes in larvae and adults, including adhesion plaques and dense bodies (Z-disks) of striated muscles and attachment plaques of smooth muscles. SORB-1 is recruited to the actin-binding, membrane-distal regions of dense bodies via its C-terminal SH3 domains in an ATN-1(α-actinin)- and ALP-1(ALP/Enigma)-dependent manner, where it contributes to the organization of sarcomeres. SORB-1 is also found in other tissues known to be under mechanical stress, including stress fibers in migratory distal tip cells and in the proximal gonad sheath, where it becomes enriched in response to tissue distention. We provide evidence for a novel role for sorbin family proteins: SORB-1 is required for normal positioning of the mitochondrial network in muscle cells. Finally, we demonstrate that SORB-1 interacts directly with two other dense body components, DEB-1(vinculin) and ZYX-1(zyxin). This work establishes SORB-1 as a bona fide sorbin family protein, as one of the late additions to the dense body complex, and as a conserved regulator of body wall muscle sarcomere organization and organelle positioning. © 2017 by The American Society for Cell Biology.

  9. Talin 1 and 2 are required for myoblast fusion, sarcomere assembly and the maintenance of myotendinous junctions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conti, Francesco J.; Monkley, Sue J.; Wood, Malcolm R.; Critchley, David R.; Müller, Ulrich

    2009-01-01

    Summary Talin 1 and 2 connect integrins to the actin cytoskeleton and regulate the affinity of integrins for ligands. In skeletal muscle, talin 1 regulates the stability of myotendinous junctions (MTJs), but the function of talin 2 in skeletal muscle is not known. Here we show that MTJ integrity is affected in talin 2-deficient mice. Concomitant ablation of talin 1 and 2 leads to defects in myoblast fusion and sarcomere assembly, resembling defects in muscle lacking β1 integrins. Talin 1/2-deficient myoblasts express functionally active β1 integrins, suggesting that defects in muscle development are not primarily caused by defects in ligand binding, but rather by disruptions of the interaction of integrins with the cytoskeleton. Consistent with this finding, assembly of integrin adhesion complexes is perturbed in the remaining muscle fibers of talin 1/2-deficient mice. We conclude that talin 1 and 2 are crucial for skeletal muscle development, where they regulate myoblast fusion, sarcomere assembly and the maintenance of MTJs. PMID:19793892

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  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. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. Microtubules Modulate F-actin Dynamics during Neuronal Polarization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Bing; Meka, Durga Praveen; Scharrenberg, Robin; König, Theresa; Schwanke, Birgit; Kobler, Oliver; Windhorst, Sabine; Kreutz, Michael R; Mikhaylova, Marina; Calderon de Anda, Froylan

    2017-08-29

    Neuronal polarization is reflected by different dynamics of microtubule and filamentous actin (F-actin). Axonal microtubules are more stable than those in the remaining neurites, while dynamics of F-actin in axonal growth cones clearly exceed those in their dendritic counterparts. However, whether a functional interplay exists between the microtubule network and F-actin dynamics in growing axons and whether this interplay is instrumental for breaking cellular symmetry is currently unknown. Here, we show that an increment on microtubule stability or number of microtubules is associated with increased F-actin dynamics. Moreover, we show that Drebrin E, an F-actin and microtubule plus-end binding protein, mediates this cross talk. Drebrin E segregates preferentially to growth cones with a higher F-actin treadmilling rate, where more microtubule plus-ends are found. Interruption of the interaction of Drebrin E with microtubules decreases F-actin dynamics and arrests neuronal polarization. Collectively the data show that microtubules modulate F-actin dynamics for initial axon extension during neuronal development.

  18. 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.

  19. The actin homologue MreB organizes the bacterial cell membrane

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Strahl, H.; Burmann, F.; Hamoen, L.W.

    2014-01-01

    The eukaryotic cortical actin cytoskeleton creates specific lipid domains, including lipid rafts, which determine the distribution of many membrane proteins. Here we show that the bacterial actin homologue MreB displays a comparable activity. MreB forms membrane-associated filaments that coordinate

  20. Insights into alternative splicing of sarcomeric genes in the heart.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weeland, Cornelis J; van den Hoogenhof, Maarten M; Beqqali, Abdelaziz; Creemers, Esther E

    2015-04-01

    Driven by rapidly evolving technologies in next-generation sequencing, alternative splicing has emerged as a crucial layer in gene expression, greatly expanding protein diversity and governing complex biological processes in the cardiomyocyte. At the core of cardiac contraction, the physical properties of the sarcomere are carefully orchestrated through alternative splicing to fit the varying demands on the heart. By the recent discovery of RBM20 and RBM24, two major heart and skeletal muscle-restricted splicing factors, it became evident that alternative splicing events in the heart occur in regulated networks rather than in isolated events. Analysis of knockout mice of these splice factors has shed light on the importance of these fundamental processes in the heart. In this review, we discuss recent advances in our understanding of the role and regulation of alternative splicing in the developing and diseased heart, specifically within the sarcomere. Through various examples (titin, myomesin, troponin T, tropomyosin and LDB3) we illustrate how alternative splicing regulates the functional properties of the sarcomere. Finally, we evaluate opportunities and obstacles to modulate alternative splicing in therapeutic approaches for cardiac disease.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. Triggering filamentation using turbulence

    CERN Document Server

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

    2016-01-01

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

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. Long-range self-organization of cytoskeletal myosin II filament stacks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Shiqiong; Dasbiswas, Kinjal; Guo, Zhenhuan; Tee, Yee-Han; Thiagarajan, Visalatchi; Hersen, Pascal; Chew, Teng-Leong; Safran, Samuel A; Zaidel-Bar, Ronen; Bershadsky, Alexander D

    2017-02-01

    Although myosin II filaments are known to exist in non-muscle cells, their dynamics and organization are incompletely understood. Here, we combined structured illumination microscopy with pharmacological and genetic perturbations, to study the process of actomyosin cytoskeleton self-organization into arcs and stress fibres. A striking feature of the myosin II filament organization was their 'registered' alignment into stacks, spanning up to several micrometres in the direction orthogonal to the parallel actin bundles. While turnover of individual myosin II filaments was fast (characteristic half-life time 60 s) and independent of actin filament turnover, the process of stack formation lasted a longer time (in the range of several minutes) and required myosin II contractility, as well as actin filament assembly/disassembly and crosslinking (dependent on formin Fmnl3, cofilin1 and α-actinin-4). Furthermore, myosin filament stack formation involved long-range movements of individual myosin filaments towards each other suggesting the existence of attractive forces between myosin II filaments. These forces, possibly transmitted via mechanical deformations of the intervening actin filament network, may in turn remodel the actomyosin cytoskeleton and drive its self-organization.

  10. 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.

  11. Dynamic Alterations to α-Actinin Accompanying Sarcomere Disassembly and Reassembly during Cardiomyocyte Mitosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Xiaohu; Hughes, Bryan G; Ali, Mohammad A M; Cho, Woo Jung; Lopez, Waleska; Schulz, Richard

    2015-01-01

    Although mammals are thought to lose their capacity to regenerate heart muscle shortly after birth, embryonic and neonatal cardiomyocytes in mammals are hyperplastic. During proliferation these cells need to selectively disassemble their myofibrils for successful cytokinesis. The mechanism of sarcomere disassembly is, however, not understood. To study this, we performed a series of immunofluorescence studies of multiple sarcomeric proteins in proliferating neonatal rat ventricular myocytes and correlated these observations with biochemical changes at different cell cycle stages. During myocyte mitosis, α-actinin and titin were disassembled as early as prometaphase. α-actinin (representing the sarcomeric Z-disk) disassembly precedes that of titin (M-line), suggesting that titin disassembly occurs secondary to the collapse of the Z-disk. Sarcomere disassembly was concurrent with the dissolution of the nuclear envelope. Inhibitors of several intracellular proteases could not block the disassembly of α-actinin or titin. There was a dramatic increase in both cytosolic (soluble) and sarcomeric α-actinin during mitosis, and cytosolic α-actinin exhibited decreased phosphorylation compared to sarcomeric α-actinin. Inhibition of cyclin-dependent kinase 1 (CDK1) induced the quick reassembly of the sarcomere. Sarcomere dis- and re-assembly in cardiomyocyte mitosis is CDK1-dependent and features dynamic differential post-translational modifications of sarcomeric and cytosolic α-actinin.

  12. 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.

  13. Two Functionally Distinct Sources of Actin Monomers Supply the Leading Edge of Lamellipodia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vitriol, Eric A.; McMillen, Laura M.; Kapustina, Maryna; Gomez, Shawn M.; Vavylonis, Dimitrios; Zheng, James Q.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Lamellipodia, the sheet-like protrusions of motile cells, consist of networks of actin filaments (F-actin) regulated by the ordered assembly from and disassembly into actin monomers (G-actin). Traditionally, G-actin is thought to exist as a homogeneous pool. Here, we show that there are two functionally and molecularly distinct sources of G-actin that supply lamellipodial actin networks. G-actin originating from the cytosolic pool requires the monomer binding protein thymosin β4 (Tβ4) for optimal leading edge localization, is targeted to formins, and is responsible for creating an elevated G/F-actin ratio that promotes membrane protrusion. The second source of G-actin comes from recycled lamellipodia F-actin. Recycling occurs independently of Tβ4 and appears to regulate lamellipodia homeostasis. Tβ4-bound G-actin specifically localizes to the leading edge because it doesn’t interact with Arp2/3-mediated polymerization sites found throughout the lamellipodia. These findings demonstrate that actin networks can be constructed from multiple sources of monomers with discrete spatiotemporal functions. PMID:25865895

  14. 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...

  15. 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.

  16. Actin growth profile in clathrin-mediated endocytosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tweten, D. J.; Bayly, P. V.; Carlsson, A. E.

    2017-05-01

    Clathrin-mediated endocytosis in yeast is driven by a protein patch containing close to 100 different types of proteins. Among the proteins are 5000 -10 000 copies of polymerized actin, and successful endocytosis requires growth of the actin network. Since it is not known exactly how actin network growth drives endocytosis, we calculate the spatial distribution of actin growth required to generate the force that drives the process. First, we establish the force distribution that must be supplied by actin growth, by combining membrane-bending profiles obtained via electron microscopy with established theories of membrane mechanics. Next, we determine the profile of actin growth, using a continuum mechanics approach and an iterative procedure starting with an actin growth profile obtained from a linear analysis. The profile has fairly constant growth outside a central hole of radius 45-50 nm, but very little growth in this hole. This growth profile can reproduce the required forces if the actin shear modulus exceeds 80 kPa, and the growing filaments can exert very large polymerization forces. The growth profile prediction could be tested via electron-microscopy or super-resolution experiments in which the turgor pressure is suddenly turned off.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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)...

  3. 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

  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. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. The Novel Desmin Mutant p.A120D Impairs Filament Formation, Prevents Intercalated Disk Localization, and Causes Sudden Cardiac Death

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Brodehl, Andreas; Dieding, Mareike; Klauke, Bärbel;

    2013-01-01

    The intermediate filament protein desmin is encoded by the gene DES and contributes to the mechanical stabilization of the striated muscle sarcomere and cell contacts within the cardiac intercalated disk. DES mutations cause severe skeletal and cardiac muscle diseases with heterogeneous phenotypes...

  8. Mechanics of composite actin networks: in vitro and cellular perspectives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Upadhyaya, Arpita

    2014-03-01

    Actin filaments and associated actin binding proteins play an essential role in governing the mechanical properties of eukaryotic cells. Even though cells have multiple actin binding proteins (ABPs) that exist simultaneously to maintain the structural and mechanical integrity of the cellular cytoskeleton, how these proteins work together to determine the properties of actin networks is not well understood. The ABP, palladin, is essential for the integrity of cell morphology and movement during development. Palladin coexists with alpha-actinin in stress fibers and focal adhesions and binds to both actin and alpha-actinin. To obtain insight into how mutually interacting actin crosslinking proteins modulate the properties of actin networks, we have characterized the micro-structure and mechanics of actin networks crosslinked with palladin and alpha-actinin. Our studies on composite networks of alpha-actinin/palladin/actin show that palladin and alpha-actinin synergistically determine network viscoelasticity. We have further examined the role of palladin in cellular force generation and mechanosensing. Traction force microscopy revealed that TAFs are sensitive to substrate stiffness as they generate larger forces on substrates of increased stiffness. Contrary to expectations, knocking down palladin increased the forces generated by cells, and also inhibited the ability to sense substrate stiffness for very stiff gels. This was accompanied by significant differences in the actin organization and adhesion dynamics of palladin knock down cells. Perturbation experiments also suggest altered myosin activity in palladin KD cells. Our results suggest that the actin crosslinkers such as palladin and myosin motors coordinate for optimal cell function and to prevent aberrant behavior as in cancer metastasis.

  9. KLHL40 deficiency destabilizes thin filament proteins and promotes nemaline myopathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garg, Ankit; O'Rourke, Jason; Long, Chengzu; Doering, Jonathan; Ravenscroft, Gianina; Bezprozvannaya, Svetlana; Nelson, Benjamin R; Beetz, Nadine; Li, Lin; Chen, She; Laing, Nigel G; Grange, Robert W; Bassel-Duby, Rhonda; Olson, Eric N

    2014-08-01

    Nemaline myopathy (NM) is a congenital myopathy that can result in lethal muscle dysfunction and is thought to be a disease of the sarcomere thin filament. Recently, several proteins of unknown function have been implicated in NM, but the mechanistic basis of their contribution to disease remains unresolved. Here, we demonstrated that loss of a muscle-specific protein, kelch-like family member 40 (KLHL40), results in a nemaline-like myopathy in mice that closely phenocopies muscle abnormalities observed in KLHL40-deficient patients. We determined that KLHL40 localizes to the sarcomere I band and A band and binds to nebulin (NEB), a protein frequently implicated in NM, as well as a putative thin filament protein, leiomodin 3 (LMOD3). KLHL40 belongs to the BTB-BACK-kelch (BBK) family of proteins, some of which have been shown to promote degradation of their substrates. In contrast, we found that KLHL40 promotes stability of NEB and LMOD3 and blocks LMOD3 ubiquitination. Accordingly, NEB and LMOD3 were reduced in skeletal muscle of both Klhl40-/- mice and KLHL40-deficient patients. Loss of sarcomere thin filament proteins is a frequent cause of NM; therefore, our data that KLHL40 stabilizes NEB and LMOD3 provide a potential basis for the development of NM in KLHL40-deficient patients.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. Self-organizing actin patterns shape membrane architecture but not cell mechanics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fritzsche, M.; Li, D.; Colin-York, H.; Chang, V. T.; Moeendarbary, E.; Felce, J. H.; Sezgin, E.; Charras, G.; Betzig, E.; Eggeling, C.

    2017-02-01

    Cell-free studies have demonstrated how collective action of actin-associated proteins can organize actin filaments into dynamic patterns, such as vortices, asters and stars. Using complementary microscopic techniques, we here show evidence of such self-organization of the actin cortex in living HeLa cells. During cell adhesion, an active multistage process naturally leads to pattern transitions from actin vortices over stars into asters. This process is primarily driven by Arp2/3 complex nucleation, but not by myosin motors, which is in contrast to what has been theoretically predicted and observed in vitro. Concomitant measurements of mechanics and plasma membrane fluidity demonstrate that changes in actin patterning alter membrane architecture but occur functionally independent of macroscopic cortex elasticity. Consequently, tuning the activity of the Arp2/3 complex to alter filament assembly may thus be a mechanism allowing cells to adjust their membrane architecture without affecting their macroscopic mechanical properties.

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. Nanosecond electric pulses trigger actin responses in plant cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berghöfer, Thomas; Eing, Christian; Flickinger, Bianca; Hohenberger, Petra; Wegner, Lars H; Frey, Wolfgang; Nick, Peter

    2009-09-25

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

  16. In Vivo Imaging of Human Sarcomere Twitch Dynamics in Individual Motor Units.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanchez, Gabriel N; Sinha, Supriyo; Liske, Holly; Chen, Xuefeng; Nguyen, Viet; Delp, Scott L; Schnitzer, Mark J

    2015-12-16

    Motor units comprise a pre-synaptic motor neuron and multiple post-synaptic muscle fibers. Many movement disorders disrupt motor unit contractile dynamics and the structure of sarcomeres, skeletal muscle's contractile units. Despite the motor unit's centrality to neuromuscular physiology, no extant technology can image sarcomere twitch dynamics in live humans. We created a wearable microscope equipped with a microendoscope for minimally invasive observation of sarcomere lengths and contractile dynamics in any major skeletal muscle. By electrically stimulating twitches via the microendoscope and visualizing the sarcomere displacements, we monitored single motor unit contractions in soleus and vastus lateralis muscles of healthy individuals. Control experiments verified that these evoked twitches involved neuromuscular transmission and faithfully reported muscle force generation. In post-stroke patients with spasticity of the biceps brachii, we found involuntary microscopic contractions and sarcomere length abnormalities. The wearable microscope facilitates exploration of many basic and disease-related neuromuscular phenomena never visualized before in live humans.

  17. 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....

  18. 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....

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. Ca2+-independent alterations in diastolic sarcomere length and relaxation kinetics in a mouse model of lipotoxic diabetic cardiomyopathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flagg, Thomas P; Cazorla, Olivier; Remedi, Maria S; Haim, Todd E; Tones, Michael A; Bahinski, Anthony; Numann, Randal E; Kovacs, Attila; Schaffer, Jean E; Nichols, Colin G; Nerbonne, Jeanne M

    2009-01-02

    Previous studies demonstrated increased fatty acid uptake and metabolism in MHC-FATP transgenic mice that overexpress fatty acid transport protein (FATP)1 in the heart under the control of the alpha-myosin heavy chain (alpha-MHC) promoter. Doppler tissue imaging and hemodynamic measurements revealed diastolic dysfunction, in the absence of changes in systolic function. The experiments here directly test the hypothesis that the diastolic dysfunction in MHC-FATP mice reflects impaired ventricular myocyte contractile function. In vitro imaging of isolated adult MHC-FATP ventricular myocytes revealed that mean diastolic sarcomere length is significantly (P<0.01) shorter than in wild-type (WT) cells (1.79+/-0.01 versus 1.84+/-0.01 microm). In addition, the relaxation rate (dL/dt) is significantly (P<0.05) slower in MHC-FATP than WT myocytes (1.58+/-0.09 versus 1.92+/-0.13 microm/s), whereas both fractional shortening and contraction rates are not different. Application of 40 mmol/L 2,3-butadionemonoxime (a nonspecific ATPase inhibitor that relaxes actin-myosin interactions) increased diastolic sarcomere length in both WT and MHC-FATP myocytes to the same length, suggesting that MHC-FATP myocytes are partially activated at rest. Direct measurements of intracellular Ca(2+) revealed that diastolic [Ca(2+)](i) is unchanged in MHC-FATP myocytes and the rate of calcium removal is unexpectedly faster in MHC-FATP than WT myocytes. Moreover, diastolic sarcomere length in MHC-FATP and WT myocytes was unaffected by removal of extracellular Ca(2+) or by buffering of intracellular Ca(2+) with the Ca(2+) chelator BAPTA (100 micromol/L), indicating that elevated intracellular Ca(2+) does not underlie impaired diastolic function in MHC-FATP ventricular myocytes. Functional assessment of skinned myocytes, however, revealed that myofilament Ca(2+) sensitivity is markedly increased in MHC-FATP, compared with WT, ventricular cells. In addition, biochemical experiments demonstrated

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. Actin organization associated with the expression of multidrug resistant phenotype in osteosarcoma cells and the effect of actin depolymerization on drug resistance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takeshita, H; Kusuzaki, K; Ashihara, T; Gebhardt, M C; Mankin, H J; Hirasawa, Y

    1998-04-10

    We have previously reported that P-glycoprotein (Pgp)-overexpressing multidrug resistant (MDR) osteosarcoma cells were functionally more differentiated than their parent cells. The present study showed that in the parent cells, the actin filaments were sparsely distributed or were diffusely spread throughout the cytoplasm, whereas the MDR osteosarcoma cells exhibited a remarkable increase in well-organized actin stress fibers. Furthermore, dihydrocytochalasin B, a specific inhibitor of actin polymerization, dramatically disrupted this network of stress fibers, increased the intracellular accumulation of doxorubicin (DOX) and modified the resistance against DOX. These results indicate that the organization of actin filaments associated with cellular differentiation may be involved in the expression of Pgp function in the MDR osteosarcoma cells.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. Directional Transport of a Bead Bound to Lamellipodial Surface Is Driven by Actin Polymerization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daisuke Nobezawa

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The force driving the retrograde flow of actin cytoskeleton is important in the cellular activities involving cell movement (e.g., growth cone motility in axon guidance, wound healing, or cancer metastasis. However, relative importance of the forces generated by actin polymerization and myosin II in this process remains elusive. We have investigated the retrograde movement of the poly-D-lysine-coated bead attached with the optical trap to the edge of lamellipodium of Swiss 3T3 fibroblasts. The velocity of the attached bead drastically decreased by submicromolar concentration of cytochalasin D, latrunculin A, or jasplakinolide, indicating the involvement of actin turnover. On the other hand, the velocity decreased only slightly in the presence of 50 μM (−-blebbistatin and Y-27632. Comparative fluorescence microscopy of the distribution of actin filaments and that of myosin II revealed that the inhibition of actin turnover by cytochalasin D, latrunculin A, or jasplakinolide greatly diminished the actin filament network. On the other hand, inhibition of myosin II activity by (−-blebbistatin or Y-27632 little affected the actin network but diminished stress fibers. Based on these results, we conclude that the actin polymerization/depolymerization plays the major role in the retrograde movement, while the myosin II activity is involved in the maintenance of the dynamic turnover of actin in lamellipodium.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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...

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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 ...

  18. The Association of Myosin IB with Actin Waves in Dictyostelium Requires Both the Plasma Membrane-Binding Site and Actin-Binding Region in the Myosin Tail

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brzeska, Hanna; Pridham, Kevin; Chery, Godefroy; Titus, Margaret A.; Korn, Edward D.

    2014-01-01

    F-actin structures and their distribution are important determinants of the dynamic shapes and functions of eukaryotic cells. Actin waves are F-actin formations that move along the ventral cell membrane driven by actin polymerization. Dictyostelium myosin IB is associated with actin waves but its role in the wave is unknown. Myosin IB is a monomeric, non-filamentous myosin with a globular head that binds to F-actin and has motor activity, and a non-helical tail comprising a basic region, a glycine-proline-glutamine-rich region and an SH3-domain. The basic region binds to acidic phospholipids in the plasma membrane through a short basic-hydrophobic site and the Gly-Pro-Gln region binds F-actin. In the current work we found that both the basic-hydrophobic site in the basic region and the Gly-Pro-Gln region of the tail are required for the association of myosin IB with actin waves. This is the first evidence that the Gly-Pro-Gln region is required for localization of myosin IB to a specific actin structure in situ. The head is not required for myosin IB association with actin waves but binding of the head to F-actin strengthens the association of myosin IB with waves and stabilizes waves. Neither the SH3-domain nor motor activity is required for association of myosin IB with actin waves. We conclude that myosin IB contributes to anchoring actin waves to the plasma membranes by binding of the basic-hydrophobic site to acidic phospholipids in the plasma membrane and binding of the Gly-Pro-Gln region to F-actin in the wave. PMID:24747353

  19. 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.

  20. Automated cardiac sarcomere analysis from second harmonic generation images

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Canadilla, Patricia; Gonzalez-Tendero, Anna; Iruretagoyena, Igor; Crispi, Fatima; Torre, Iratxe; Amat-Roldan, Ivan; Bijnens, Bart H.; Gratacos, Eduard

    2014-05-01

    Automatic quantification of cardiac muscle properties in tissue sections might provide important information related to different types of diseases. Second harmonic generation (SHG) imaging provides a stain-free microscopy approach to image cardiac fibers that, combined with our methodology of the automated measurement of the ultrastructure of muscle fibers, computes a reliable set of quantitative image features (sarcomere length, A-band length, thick-thin interaction length, and fiber orientation). We evaluated the performance of our methodology in computer-generated muscle fibers modeling some artifacts that are present during the image acquisition. Then, we also evaluated it by comparing it to manual measurements in SHG images from cardiac tissue of fetal and adult rabbits. The results showed a good performance of our methodology at high signal-to-noise ratio of 20 dB. We conclude that our automated measurements enable reliable characterization of cardiac fiber tissues to systematically study cardiac tissue in a wide range of conditions.

  1. 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.

  2. Polarization gating enables sarcomere length measurements by laser diffraction in fibrotic muscle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Kevin W.; Dayanidhi, Sudarshan; Lieber, Richard L.

    2014-11-01

    Sarcomere length is a key parameter commonly measured in muscle physiology since it dictates striated muscle active force. Laser diffraction (LD)-based measurements of sarcomere length are time-efficient and sample a greater number of sarcomeres compared with traditional microscopy-based techniques. However, a limitation to LD techniques is that signal quality is severely degraded by scattering events as photons propagate through tissue. Consequently, sarcomere length measurements are unattainable when the number of scattering events is sufficiently large in muscle tissue with a high scattering probability. This occurs in fibrotic skeletal muscle seen in muscular dystrophies and secondary to tissue trauma, thus eliminating the use of LD to study these skeletal muscle ailments. Here, we utilize polarization gating to extract diffracted signals that are buried in noise created by scattering. Importantly, we demonstrate that polarization-gated laser diffraction (PGLD) enables sarcomere length measurements in muscles from chronically immobilized mice hind limbs; these muscles have a substantial increase of intramuscular connective tissue that scatter light and disable sarcomere length measurements by traditional LD. Further, we compare PGLD sarcomere lengths to those measured by bright field (BF) and confocal microscopy as positive controls and reveal a significant bias of BF but not of confocal microscopy.

  3. Human soleus sarcomere lengths measured using in vivo microendoscopy at two ankle flexion angles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Xuefeng; Delp, Scott L

    2016-12-08

    The forces generated by the soleus muscle play an important role in standing and locomotion. The lengths of the sarcomeres of the soleus affect its force-generating capacity, yet it is unknown how sarcomere lengths in the soleus change as a function of ankle flexion angle. In this study, we used microendoscopy to measure resting sarcomere lengths at 10° plantarflexion and 20° dorsiflexion in 7 healthy individuals. Mean sarcomere lengths at 10° plantarflexion were 2.84±0.09µm (mean±S.E.M.), near the optimal length for sarcomere force generation. Sarcomere lengths were 3.43±0.09µm at 20° dorsiflexion, indicating that they were longer than optimal length when the ankle was in dorsiflexion and the muscle was inactive. Our results indicate a smaller sarcomere length difference between two ankle flexion angles compared to estimates from musculoskeletal models and suggest why these models frequently underestimate the force-generating capacity of the soleus.

  4. 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.

  5. Changes in sarcomere length during isometric tension development in frog skeletal muscle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cleworth, D R; Edman, K A

    1972-12-01

    1. Changes in sarcomere length during isometric contraction of isolated semitendinosus muscle fibres from the frog were studied using laser diffraction techniques. Movements of the first-order diffraction line relative to the zero-order reference were recorded from a screen on continuously moving film. Sarcomere length changes of 50 A could be resolved in this way.2. Following a latent period of approximately 12 msec after the stimulus of a single skeletal muscle fibre at 1-2 degrees C, there appeared to be a simultaneous onset of tension development and sarcomere shortening. Provided that the fibre was uniformly excited along its length, different regions shortened together by approximately the same amount. The extent of the shortening was a function of the total compliance of the tendons and tension measuring device.3. During the plateau of a smooth tetanus no fluctuations of first-order line width or zero- to first-order line spacing were detectable at any point examined along the preparation. This finding provides evidence that, in a functionally intact fibre, no synchronous oscillations of the sarcomeres, at least no length changes exceeding 50 A, occur during a fused tetanus. Furthermore, the fact that the first-order line did not increase in width as the preparation went from rest to full activity indicates that contraction proceeds without appreciable change in distribution of sarcomere lengths.4. The sarcomere movements during relaxation differed along the length of the fibre. As the tension declined smoothly, sarcomeres in some parts of the fibre underwent further shortening, while the end sarcomeres near the tendons and in one or two regions in the middle segment of the fibre were further extended. These data indicate that the duration of the mechanical activity differs in different regions along the length of the fibre. The pattern of relaxation, i.e. the behaviour of the sarcomeres in different fibre segments, is unique to any particular fibre.

  6. 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.

  7. Monitoring sarcomere structure changes in whole muscle using diffuse light reflectance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xia, JinJun; Weaver, Amanda; Gerrard, David E.; Yao, Gang

    2006-07-01

    Normal biomechanical and physiological functions of striated muscles are facilitated by the repeating sarcomere units. Light scattering technique has been used in studying single extracted muscle fibers. However, few studies, if any, have been conducted to investigate the possibility of using optical detection to examine sarcomere structure changes in whole muscles. We conducted a series of experiments to demonstrate that optical scattering properties measured in whole muscle are related to changes in sarcomere structure. These results suggest that photon migration technique has a potential for characterizing in vivo tissue ultrastructure changes in whole muscle.

  8. 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)

  9. At the Start of the Sarcomere: A Previously Unrecognized Role for Myosin Chaperones and Associated Proteins during Early Myofibrillogenesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Layne Myhre

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The development of striated muscle in vertebrates requires the assembly of contractile myofibrils, consisting of highly ordered bundles of protein filaments. Myofibril formation occurs by the stepwise addition of complex proteins, a process that is mediated by a variety of molecular chaperones and quality control factors. Most notably, myosin of the thick filament requires specialized chaperone activity during late myofibrillogenesis, including that of Hsp90 and its cofactor, Unc45b. Unc45b has been proposed to act exclusively as an adaptor molecule, stabilizing interactions between Hsp90 and myosin; however, recent discoveries in zebrafish and C. elegans suggest the possibility of an earlier role for Unc45b during myofibrillogenesis. This role may involve functional control of nonmuscle myosins during the earliest stages of myogenesis, when premyofibril scaffolds are first formed from dynamic cytoskeletal actin. This paper will outline several lines of evidence that converge to build a model for Unc45b activity during early myofibrillogenesis.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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)

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Regulation of levels of actin threonine phosphorylation during life cycle of Physarum polycephalum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shirai, Yuki; Sasaki, Narie; Kishi, Yoshiro; Izumi, Akiko; Itoh, Kie; Sameshima, Masazumi; Kobayashi, Tetsuyuki; Murakami-Murofushi, Kimiko

    2006-02-01

    Under various environmental stresses, the true slime mold Physarum polycephalum converts into dormant forms, such as microcysts, sclerotia, and spores, which can survive in adverse environments for a considerable period of time. In drought-induced sclerotia, actin is threonine phosphorylated, which blocks its ability to polymerize into filaments. It is known that fragmin and actin-fragmin kinase (AFK) mediate this phosphorylation event. In this work, we demonstrate that high levels of actin threonine phosphorylation are also found in other dormant cells, including microcysts and spores. As the threonine phosphorylation of actin in microcysts and sclerotia were induced by drought stress but not by other stresses, we suggest that drought stress is essential for actin phosphorylation in both cell types. Although characteristic filamentous actin structures (dot- or rod-like structures) were observed in microcysts, sclerotia, and spores, actin phosphorylation was not required for the formation of these structures. Prior to the formation of both microcysts and sclerotia, AFK mRNA expression was activated transiently, whereas fragmin mRNA levels decreased. Our results suggest that drought stress and AFK might be involved in the threonine phosphorylation of actin. Copyright (c) 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. Sarcomere Imaging by Quantum Dots for the Study of Cardiac Muscle Physiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fuyu Kobirumaki-Shimozawa

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available We here review the use of quantum dots (QDs for the imaging of sarcomeric movements in cardiac muscle. QDs are fluorescence substances (CdSe that absorb photons and reemit photons at a different wavelength (depending on the size of the particle; they are efficient in generating long-lasting, narrow symmetric emission profiles, and hence useful in various types of imaging studies. Recently, we developed a novel system in which the length of a particular, single sarcomere in cardiomyocytes can be measured at ~30 nm precision. Moreover, our system enables accurate measurement of sarcomere length in the isolated heart. We propose that QDs are the ideal tool for the study of sarcomere dynamics during excitation-contraction coupling in healthy and diseased cardiac muscle.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Conformational phases of membrane bound cytoskeletal filaments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quint, David A.; Grason, Gregory; Gopinathan, Ajay

    2013-03-01

    Membrane bound cytoskeletal filaments found in living cells are employed to carry out many types of activities including cellular division, rigidity and transport. When these biopolymers are bound to a membrane surface they may take on highly non-trivial conformations as compared to when they are not bound. This leads to the natural question; What are the important interactions which drive these polymers to particular conformations when they are bound to a surface? Assuming that there are binding domains along the polymer which follow a periodic helical structure set by the natural monomeric handedness, these bound conformations must arise from the interplay of the intrinsic monomeric helicity and membrane binding. To probe this question, we study a continuous model of an elastic filament with intrinsic helicity and map out the conformational phases of this filament for various mechanical and structural parameters in our model, such as elastic stiffness and intrinsic twist of the filament. Our model allows us to gain insight into the possible mechanisms which drive real biopolymers such as actin and tubulin in eukaryotes and their prokaryotic cousins MreB and FtsZ to take on their functional conformations within living cells.

  8. 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...

  9. 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

  10. 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...

  11. 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

  12. Large-Scale Patterns of Filament Channels and Filaments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mackay, Duncan

    2016-07-01

    In this review the properties and large-scale patterns of filament channels and filaments will be considered. Initially, the global formation locations of filament channels and filaments are discussed, along with their hemispheric pattern. Next, observations of the formation of filament channels and filaments are described where two opposing views are considered. Finally, the wide range of models that have been constructed to consider the formation of filament channels and filaments over long time-scales are described, along with the origin of the hemispheric pattern of filaments.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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