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Sample records for actin networks formed

  1. Structural and viscoelastic properties of actin networks formed by espin or pathologically relevant espin mutants.

    PubMed

    Lieleg, Oliver; Schmoller, Kurt M; Purdy Drew, Kirstin R; Claessens, Mireille M A E; Semmrich, Christine; Zheng, Lili; Bartles, James R; Bausch, Andreas R

    2009-11-09

    The structural organization of the cytoskeleton determines its viscoelastic response which is crucial for the correct functionality of living cells. Both the mechanical response and microstructure of the cytoskeleton are regulated on a microscopic level by the local activation of different actin binding and/or bundling proteins (ABPs). Misregulations in the expression of these ABPs or mutations in their sequence can entail severe cellular dysfunctions and diseases. Here, we study the structural and viscoelastic properties of reconstituted actin networks cross-linked by the ABP espin and compare the obtained network properties to those of other bundled actin networks. Moreover, we quantify the impact of pathologically relevant espin mutations on the viscoelastic properties of these cytoskeletal networks.

  2. Morphology and viscoelasticity of actin networks formed with the mutually interacting crosslinkers: palladin and alpha-actinin.

    PubMed

    Grooman, Brian; Fujiwara, Ikuko; Otey, Carol; Upadhyaya, Arpita

    2012-01-01

    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 clearly understood. The ABP, palladin, is essential for the maintenance of cell morphology and the regulation of cell movement. Palladin coexists with α-actinin in stress fibers and focal adhesions and binds to both actin and α-actinin. To obtain insight into how mutually interacting actin crosslinking proteins modulate the properties of actin networks, we characterized the micro-structure and mechanics of actin networks crosslinked with palladin and α-actinin. We first showed that palladin crosslinks actin filaments into bundled networks which are viscoelastic in nature. Our studies also showed that composite networks of α-actinin/palladin/actin behave very similar to pure palladin or pure [Formula: see text]-actinin networks. However, we found evidence that palladin and α-actinin synergistically modify network viscoelasticity. To our knowledge, this is the first quantitative characterization of the physical properties of actin networks crosslinked with two mutually interacting crosslinkers.

  3. Toxoplasma gondii F-actin forms an extensive filamentous network required for material exchange and parasite maturation

    PubMed Central

    Periz, Javier; Whitelaw, Jamie; Harding, Clare; Gras, Simon; Del Rosario Minina, Mario Igor; Latorre-Barragan, Fernanda; Lemgruber, Leandro; Reimer, Madita Alice; Insall, Robert; Heaslip, Aoife; Meissner, Markus

    2017-01-01

    Apicomplexan actin is important during the parasite's life cycle. Its polymerization kinetics are unusual, permitting only short, unstable F-actin filaments. It has not been possible to study actin in vivo and so its physiological roles have remained obscure, leading to models distinct from conventional actin behaviour. Here a modified version of the commercially available actin-chromobody was tested as a novel tool for visualising F-actin dynamics in Toxoplasma gondii. Cb labels filamentous actin structures within the parasite cytosol and labels an extensive F-actin network that connects parasites within the parasitophorous vacuole and allows vesicles to be exchanged between parasites. In the absence of actin, parasites lack a residual body and inter-parasite connections and grow in an asynchronous and disorganized manner. Collectively, these data identify new roles for actin in the intracellular phase of the parasites lytic cycle and provide a robust new tool for imaging parasitic F-actin dynamics. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.24119.001 PMID:28322189

  4. Reversible stress softening of actin networks

    PubMed Central

    Chaudhuri, Ovijit; Parekh, Sapun H.; Fletcher, Daniel A.

    2011-01-01

    The mechanical properties of cells play an essential role in numerous physiological processes. Organized networks of semiflexible actin filaments determine cell stiffness and transmit force during mechanotransduction, cytokinesis, cell motility and other cellular shape changes1–3. Although numerous actin-binding proteins have been identified that organize networks, the mechanical properties of actin networks with physiological architectures and concentrations have been difficult to measure quantitatively. Studies of mechanical properties in vitro have found that crosslinked networks of actin filaments formed in solution exhibit stress stiffening arising from the entropic elasticity of individual filaments or crosslinkers resisting extension4–8. Here we report reversible stress-softening behaviour in actin networks reconstituted in vitro that suggests a critical role for filaments resisting compression. Using a modified atomic force microscope to probe dendritic actin networks (like those formed in the lamellipodia of motile cells), we observe stress stiffening followed by a regime of reversible stress softening at higher loads. This softening behaviour can be explained by elastic buckling of individual filaments under compression that avoids catastrophic fracture of the network. The observation of both stress stiffening and softening suggests a complex interplay between entropic and enthalpic elasticity in determining the mechanical properties of actin networks. PMID:17230186

  5. Nucleocapsid of Tomato spotted wilt tospovirus forms mobile particles that traffic on an actin/endoplasmic reticulum network driven by myosin XI-K.

    PubMed

    Feng, Zhike; Chen, Xiaojiao; Bao, Yiqun; Dong, Jiahong; Zhang, Zhongkai; Tao, Xiaorong

    2013-12-01

    A number of viral proteins from plant viruses, other than movement proteins, have been shown to traffic intracellularly along actin filaments and to be involved in viral infection. However, there has been no report that a viral capsid protein may traffic within a cell by utilizing the actin/endoplasmic reticulum (ER) network. We used Tomato spotted wilt tospovirus (TSWV) as a model virus to study the cell biological properties of a nucleocapsid (N) protein. We found that TSWV N protein was capable of forming highly motile cytoplasmic inclusions that moved along the ER and actin network. The disruption of actin filaments by latrunculin B, an actin-depolymerizing agent, almost stopped the intracellular movement of N inclusions, whereas treatment with a microtubule-depolymerizing reagent, oryzalin, did not. The over-expression of a myosin XI-K tail, functioning in a dominant-negative manner, completely halted the movement of N inclusions. Latrunculin B treatment strongly inhibited the formation of TSWV local lesions in Nicotiana tabacum cv Samsun NN and delayed systemic infection in N. benthamiana. Collectively, our findings provide the first evidence that the capsid protein of a plant virus has the novel property of intracellular trafficking. The findings add capsid protein as a new class of viral protein that traffics on the actin/ER system.

  6. Formin DAAM1 Organizes Actin Filaments in the Cytoplasmic Nodal Actin Network

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Weiwei; Lieu, Zi Zhao; Manser, Ed; Bershadsky, Alexander D.; Sheetz, Michael P.

    2016-01-01

    A nodal cytoplasmic actin network underlies actin cytoplasm cohesion in the absence of stress fibers. We previously described such a network that forms upon Latrunculin A (LatA) treatment, in which formin DAAM1 was localized at these nodes. Knock down of DAAM1 reduced the mobility of actin nodes but the nodes remained. Here we have investigated DAAM1 containing nodes after LatA washout. DAAM1 was found to be distributed between the cytoplasm and the plasma membrane. The membrane binding likely occurs through an interaction with lipid rafts, but is not required for F-actin assembly. Interesting the forced interaction of DAAM1 with plasma membrane through a rapamycin-dependent linkage, enhanced F-actin assembly at the cell membrane (compared to the cytoplasm) after the LatA washout. However, immediately after addition of both rapamycin and LatA, the cytoplasmic actin nodes formed transiently, before DAAM1 moved to the membrane. This was consistent with the idea that DAAM1 was initially anchored to cytoplasmic actin nodes. Further, photoactivatable tracking of DAAM1 showed DAAM1 was immobilized at these actin nodes. Thus, we suggest that DAAM1 organizes actin filaments into a nodal complex, and such nodal complexes seed actin network recovery after actin depolymerization. PMID:27760153

  7. A structural study of F-actin - filamin networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahrens-Braunstein, Ashley; Nguyen, Lam; Hirst, Linda

    2010-03-01

    The cell's ability to move and contract is attributed to the semi-flexible filamentous protein, F -actin, one of the three filaments in the cytoskeleton. Actin bundling can be formed by a cross-linking actin binding protein (ABP) filamin. By examining filamin's cross-linking abilities at different concentrations and molar ratios, we can study the flexibility, structure and multiple network formations created when cross-linking F-actin with this protein. We have studied the phase diagram of this protein system using fluorescence microscopy, analyzing the network structures observed in the context of a coarse grained molecular dynamics simulation carried out by our group.

  8. Architecture and Connectivity Govern Actin Network Contractility.

    PubMed

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

    2016-03-07

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  10. Dynamic actin cycling through mitochondrial subpopulations locally regulates the fission–fusion balance within mitochondrial networks

    PubMed Central

    Moore, Andrew S.; Wong, Yvette C.; Simpson, Cory L.; Holzbaur, Erika L. F.

    2016-01-01

    Mitochondria form interconnected networks that dynamically remodel in response to cellular needs. Using live-cell imaging, we investigate the role of the actin cytoskeleton in regulating mitochondrial fission and fusion. We identify cycling of actin filaments onto and off of subsets of cellular mitochondria. The association of actin filaments with mitochondrial subpopulations is transient; actin quickly disassembles, then reassembles around a distinct subpopulation, efficiently cycling through all cellular mitochondria within 14 min. The focal assembly of actin induces local, Drp1-dependent fragmentation of the mitochondrial network. On actin disassembly, fragmented mitochondria undergo rapid fusion, leading to regional recovery of the tubular mitochondrial network. Cycling requires dynamic actin polymerization and is blocked by inhibitors of both Arp2/3 and formins. We propose that cyclic assembly of actin onto mitochondria modulates the fission/fusion balance, promotes network remodelling and content mixing, and thus may serve as an essential mechanism regulating mitochondrial network homeostasis. PMID:27686185

  11. A novel form of actin in Leishmania: molecular characterisation, subcellular localisation and association with subpellicular microtubules.

    PubMed

    Sahasrabuddhe, Amogh A; Bajpai, Virendra K; Gupta, Chhitar M

    2004-03-01

    To study the occurrence and subcellular distribution of actin in trypanosomatid parasites, we have cloned and overexpressed Leishmania donovani actin gene in bacteria, purified the protein, and employed the affinity purified rabbit polyclonal anti-recombinant actin antibodies as a probe to study the organisation and subcellular distribution of actin in Leishmania cells. The Leishmania actin did not cross react with antimammalian actin antibodies but was readily recognized by the anti-Leishmania actin antibodies in both the promastigote and amastigote forms of the parasite. About 10(6) copies per cell of this protein (M(r) 42.05 kDa) were present in the Leishmania promastigote. Unlike other eukaryotic actins, the oligomeric forms of Leishmania actin were not stained by phalloidin nor were dissociated by actin filament-disrupting agents, like Latrunculin B and Cytochalasin D. Analysis of the primary structure of this protein revealed that these unusual characteristics may be related to the presence of highly diverged amino acids in the DNase I-binding loop (amino acids 40-50) and the hydrophobic plug (amino acids 262-272) regions of Leishmania actin. The subcellular distribution of actin was studied in the Leishmania promastigotes by employing immunoelectron and immunofluorescence microscopies. This protein was present not only in the flagella, flagellar pocket, nucleus and the kinetoplast but it was also localized on the nuclear, vacuolar and cytoplasmic face of the plasma membranes. Further, the plasma membrane-associated actin was colocalised with subpellicular microtubules, while most of the actin present in the kinetoplast colocalised with the k-DNA network. These results clearly indicate that Leishmania contains a novel form of actin which may structurally and functionally differ from other eukaryotic actins. The functional significance of these observations is discussed.

  12. 3D actin network centerline extraction with multiple active contours.

    PubMed

    Xu, Ting; Vavylonis, Dimitrios; Huang, Xiaolei

    2014-02-01

    Fluorescence microscopy is frequently used to study two and three dimensional network structures formed by cytoskeletal polymer fibers such as actin filaments and actin cables. While these cytoskeletal structures are often dilute enough to allow imaging of individual filaments or bundles of them, quantitative analysis of these images is challenging. To facilitate quantitative, reproducible and objective analysis of the image data, we propose a semi-automated method to extract actin networks and retrieve their topology in 3D. Our method uses multiple Stretching Open Active Contours (SOACs) that are automatically initialized at image intensity ridges and then evolve along the centerlines of filaments in the network. SOACs can merge, stop at junctions, and reconfigure with others to allow smooth crossing at junctions of filaments. The proposed approach is generally applicable to images of curvilinear networks with low SNR. We demonstrate its potential by extracting the centerlines of synthetic meshwork images, actin networks in 2D Total Internal Reflection Fluorescence Microscopy images, and 3D actin cable meshworks of live fission yeast cells imaged by spinning disk confocal microscopy. Quantitative evaluation of the method using synthetic images shows that for images with SNR above 5.0, the average vertex error measured by the distance between our result and ground truth is 1 voxel, and the average Hausdorff distance is below 10 voxels.

  13. Self-organization of actin networks by a monomeric myosin

    PubMed Central

    Saczko-Brack, Dario; Warchol, Ewa; Rogez, Benoit; Kröss, Markus; Heissler, Sarah M.; Sellers, James R.; Batters, Christopher; Veigel, Claudia

    2016-01-01

    The organization of actomyosin networks lies at the center of many types of cellular motility, including cell polarization and collective cell migration during development and morphogenesis. Myosin-IXa is critically involved in these processes. Using total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy, we resolved actin bundles assembled by myosin-IXa. Electron microscopic data revealed that the bundles consisted of highly ordered lattices with parallel actin polarity. The myosin-IXa motor domains aligned across the network, forming cross-links at a repeat distance of precisely 36 nm, matching the helical repeat of actin. Single-particle image processing resolved three distinct conformations of myosin-IXa in the absence of nucleotide. Using cross-correlation of a modeled actomyosin crystal structure, we identified sites of additional mass, which can only be accounted for by the large insert in loop 2 exclusively found in the motor domain of class IX myosins. We show that the large insert in loop 2 binds calmodulin and creates two coordinated actin-binding sites that constrain the actomyosin interactions generating the actin lattices. The actin lattices introduce orientated tracks at specific sites in the cell, which might install platforms allowing Rho-GTPase–activating protein (RhoGAP) activity to be focused at a definite locus. In addition, the lattices might introduce a myosin-related, force-sensing mechanism into the cytoskeleton in cell polarization and collective cell migration. PMID:27956608

  14. Microstructure and Mechanical Properties of Composite Actin Networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gardel, Margaret; Shin, Jennifer; Mahadevan, L.; Matsudaira, Paul; Weitz, D. A.

    2003-03-01

    There exits a family of actin-binding proteins (ABPs) and each protein has a distinct function for bundling, networking, gelating, capping, or simply binding to actin. Whether actin serves as a structural or motile component, its mechanical properties are determined by its degree and kinds of association with different ABPs and these properties are often closely related to its functional needs. For instance, in a cell actin is highly crosslinked with multiple ABPs (fimbrin, alpha-actinin, etc.) to generate thrust and strength for locomotion. In the acrosomal reaction of horseshoe crab sperm, actin exists as a bundle of preassembled filaments crosslinked with scruin to form a rigid structure to penetrate into an egg without yielding. We study the effects three different ABPs (scruin,fimbrin and alpha-actinin) have on the rheology and microstructure of actin networks using multiparticle tracking, imaging, and bulk rheology. From these experiments we can deduce how an evolving microstructure affects the bulk rheological properties and the role different concentrations and kinds of ABPs have in these changes.

  15. Growth of branched actin networks against obstacles.

    PubMed Central

    Carlsson, A E

    2001-01-01

    A method for simulating the growth of branched actin networks against obstacles has been developed. The method is based on simple stochastic events, including addition or removal of monomers at filament ends, capping of filament ends, nucleation of branches from existing filaments, and detachment of branches; the network structure for several different models of the branching process has also been studied. The models differ with regard to their inclusion of effects such as preferred branch orientations, filament uncapping at the obstacle, and preferential branching at filament ends. The actin ultrastructure near the membrane in lamellipodia is reasonably well produced if preferential branching in the direction of the obstacle or barbed-end uncapping effects are included. Uncapping effects cause the structures to have a few very long filaments that are similar to those seen in pathogen-induced "actin tails." The dependence of the growth velocity, branch spacing, and network density on the rate parameters for the various processes is quite different among the branching models. An analytic theory of the growth velocity and branch spacing of the network is described. Experiments are suggested that could distinguish among some of the branching models. PMID:11566765

  16. Mechanical detection of a long-range actin network emanating from a biomimetic cortex.

    PubMed

    Bussonnier, Matthias; Carvalho, Kevin; Lemière, Joël; Joanny, Jean-François; Sykes, Cécile; Betz, Timo

    2014-08-19

    Actin is ubiquitous globular protein that polymerizes into filaments and forms networks that participate in the force generation of eukaryotic cells. Such forces are used for cell motility, cytokinesis, and tissue remodeling. Among those actin networks, we focus on the actin cortex, a dense branched network beneath the plasma membrane that is of particular importance for the mechanical properties of the cell. Here we reproduce the cellular cortex by activating actin filament growth on a solid surface. We unveil the existence of a sparse actin network that emanates from the surface and extends over a distance that is at least 10 times larger than the cortex itself. We call this sparse actin network the "actin cloud" and characterize its mechanical properties with optical tweezers. We show, both experimentally and theoretically, that the actin cloud is mechanically relevant and that it should be taken into account because it can sustain forces as high as several picoNewtons (pN). In particular, it is known that in plant cells, actin networks similar to the actin cloud have a role in positioning the nucleus; in large oocytes, they play a role in driving chromosome movement. Recent evidence shows that such networks even prevent granule condensation in large cells.

  17. Viral Replication Protein Inhibits Cellular Cofilin Actin Depolymerization Factor to Regulate the Actin Network and Promote Viral Replicase Assembly

    PubMed Central

    Kovalev, Nikolay; de Castro Martín, Isabel Fernández; Barajas, Daniel; Risco, Cristina; Nagy, Peter D.

    2016-01-01

    RNA viruses exploit host cells by co-opting host factors and lipids and escaping host antiviral responses. Previous genome-wide screens with Tomato bushy stunt virus (TBSV) in the model host yeast have identified 18 cellular genes that are part of the actin network. In this paper, we show that the p33 viral replication factor interacts with the cellular cofilin (Cof1p), which is an actin depolymerization factor. Using temperature-sensitive (ts) Cof1p or actin (Act1p) mutants at a semi-permissive temperature, we find an increased level of TBSV RNA accumulation in yeast cells and elevated in vitro activity of the tombusvirus replicase. We show that the large p33 containing replication organelle-like structures are located in the close vicinity of actin patches in yeast cells or around actin cable hubs in infected plant cells. Therefore, the actin filaments could be involved in VRC assembly and the formation of large viral replication compartments containing many individual VRCs. Moreover, we show that the actin network affects the recruitment of viral and cellular components, including oxysterol binding proteins and VAP proteins to form membrane contact sites for efficient transfer of sterols to the sites of replication. Altogether, the emerging picture is that TBSV, via direct interaction between the p33 replication protein and Cof1p, controls cofilin activities to obstruct the dynamic actin network that leads to efficient subversion of cellular factors for pro-viral functions. In summary, the discovery that TBSV interacts with cellular cofilin and blocks the severing of existing filaments and the formation of new actin filaments in infected cells opens a new window to unravel the way by which viruses could subvert/co-opt cellular proteins and lipids. By regulating the functions of cofilin and the actin network, which are central nodes in cellular pathways, viruses could gain supremacy in subversion of cellular factors for pro-viral functions. PMID:26863541

  18. Curvature and torsion in growing actin networks

    PubMed Central

    Shaevitz, Joshua W; Fletcher, Daniel A

    2011-01-01

    Intracellular pathogens such as Listeria monocytogenes and Rickettsia rickettsii move within a host cell by polymerizing a comet-tail of actin fibers that ultimately pushes the cell forward. This dense network of cross-linked actin polymers typically exhibits a striking curvature that causes bacteria to move in gently looping paths. Theoretically, tail curvature has been linked to details of motility by considering force and torque balances from a finite number of polymerizing filaments. Here we track beads coated with a prokaryotic activator of actin polymerization in three dimensions to directly quantify the curvature and torsion of bead motility paths. We find that bead paths are more likely to have low rather than high curvature at any given time. Furthermore, path curvature changes very slowly in time, with an autocorrelation decay time of 200 s. Paths with a small radius of curvature, therefore, remain so for an extended period resulting in loops when confined to two dimensions. When allowed to explore a three-dimensional (3D) space, path loops are less evident. Finally, we quantify the torsion in the bead paths and show that beads do not exhibit a significant left- or right-handed bias to their motion in 3D. These results suggest that paths of actin-propelled objects may be attributed to slow changes in curvature, possibly associated with filament debranching, rather than a fixed torque. PMID:18560043

  19. Curvature and torsion in growing actin networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shaevitz, Joshua W.; Fletcher, Daniel A.

    2008-06-01

    Intracellular pathogens such as Listeria monocytogenes and Rickettsia rickettsii move within a host cell by polymerizing a comet-tail of actin fibers that ultimately pushes the cell forward. This dense network of cross-linked actin polymers typically exhibits a striking curvature that causes bacteria to move in gently looping paths. Theoretically, tail curvature has been linked to details of motility by considering force and torque balances from a finite number of polymerizing filaments. Here we track beads coated with a prokaryotic activator of actin polymerization in three dimensions to directly quantify the curvature and torsion of bead motility paths. We find that bead paths are more likely to have low rather than high curvature at any given time. Furthermore, path curvature changes very slowly in time, with an autocorrelation decay time of 200 s. Paths with a small radius of curvature, therefore, remain so for an extended period resulting in loops when confined to two dimensions. When allowed to explore a three-dimensional (3D) space, path loops are less evident. Finally, we quantify the torsion in the bead paths and show that beads do not exhibit a significant left- or right-handed bias to their motion in 3D. These results suggest that paths of actin-propelled objects may be attributed to slow changes in curvature, possibly associated with filament debranching, rather than a fixed torque.

  20. Cyclic hardening in bundled actin networks.

    PubMed

    Schmoller, K M; Fernández, P; Arevalo, R C; Blair, D L; Bausch, A R

    2010-01-01

    Nonlinear deformations can irreversibly alter the mechanical properties of materials. Most soft materials, such as rubber and living tissues, display pronounced softening when cyclically deformed. Here we show that, in contrast, reconstituted networks of crosslinked, bundled actin filaments harden when subject to cyclical shear. As a consequence, they exhibit a mechano-memory where a significant stress barrier is generated at the maximum of the cyclic shear strain. This unique response is crucially determined by the network architecture: at lower crosslinker concentrations networks do not harden, but soften showing the classic Mullins effect known from rubber-like materials. By simultaneously performing macrorheology and confocal microscopy, we show that cyclic shearing results in structural reorganization of the network constituents such that the maximum applied strain is encoded into the network architecture.

  1. Actin network architecture can determine myosin motor activity.

    PubMed

    Reymann, Anne-Cécile; Boujemaa-Paterski, Rajaa; Martiel, Jean-Louis; Guérin, Christophe; Cao, Wenxiang; Chin, Harvey F; De La Cruz, Enrique M; Théry, Manuel; Blanchoin, Laurent

    2012-06-08

    The organization of actin filaments into higher-ordered structures governs eukaryotic cell shape and movement. Global actin network size and architecture are maintained in a dynamic steady state through regulated assembly and disassembly. Here, we used experimentally defined actin structures in vitro to investigate how the activity of myosin motors depends on network architecture. Direct visualization of filaments revealed myosin-induced actin network deformation. During this reorganization, myosins selectively contracted and disassembled antiparallel actin structures, while parallel actin bundles remained unaffected. The local distribution of nucleation sites and the resulting orientation of actin filaments appeared to regulate the scalability of the contraction process. This "orientation selection" mechanism for selective contraction and disassembly suggests how the dynamics of the cellular actin cytoskeleton can be spatially controlled by actomyosin contractility.

  2. Encoding Mechano-Memories in Actin Networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Foucard, Louis; Majumdar, Sayantan; Levine, Alex; Gardel, Margaret

    The ability of cells to sense and adapt to external mechanical stimuli is vital to many of its biological functions. A critical question is therefore to understand how mechanosensory mechanisms arise in living matter, with implications in both cell biology and smart materials design. Experimental work has demonstrated that the mechanical properties of semiflexible actin networks in Eukaryotic cells can be modulated (either transiently or irreversibly) via the application of external forces. Previous work has also shown with a combination of numerical simulations and analytic calculations shows that the broken rotational symmetry of the filament orientational distribution in semiflexible networks leads to dramatic changes in the mechanical response. Here we demonstrate with a combination of numerical and analytic calculations that the observed long-lived mechano-memory in the actin networks arise from changes in the nematic order of the constituent filaments. These stress-induced changes in network topology relax slowly under zero stress and can be observed through changes in the nonlinear mechanics. Our results provide a strategy for designing a novel class of materials and demonstrate a new putative mechanism of mechanical sensing in eukaryotic cells.

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

    SciTech Connect

    Kumakura, Michiko; Kawaguchi, Atsushi Nagata, Kyosuke

    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.

  4. Multiple supramolecular structures formed by interaction of actin with protamine

    PubMed Central

    Grazi, Enrico; Magri, Ermes; Pasquali-Ronchetti, Ivonne

    1982-01-01

    When protamine is added to actin, different supramolecular structures are formed depending on the molar ratio of the two proteins and of the ionic strength of the medium. At low ionic strength, and going from a molar ratio of protamine to G-actin of 4:1, 2:1 and 1:1, globular aggregates are first converted into extended structures and then to long threads in which the constituent ATP–G-actin is rapidly exchangeable with the actin of the medium. At high ionic strength {Tyrode [(1910) Arch. Int. Pharmacodyn. Ther. 20, 205–212] solution}, starting from G-actin and protamine in the 1:1 molar ratio, long ropes are formed that can be resolved into intertwining filaments of 4–5nm diameter. The addition of protamine in a 1:1 molar ratio to a solution of F-actin in Tyrode solution causes the breakage of the actin filaments, which is also revealed by the decrease of the viscosity of the solution and the formation of ordered latero-lateral aggregates. The structures formed by reaction of protamine with G-actin can be separated from free G-actin and protamine by filtration through 0.45μm-pore-size Millipore filters. This technique has been exploited to study the exchange reaction between free actin and the actin–protamine complexes. For these studies the 1:1 actin–protamine complex formed at low ionic strength and the 2:1 actin–protamine complex formed in the presence of 23nm-free Mg2+ have been selected. In the first case the exchange reaction is practically complete in the dead time of the experiment (20s). In the second case, where the complex operates like a true ATPase, the rate of the exchange is initially comparable with the rate of the ATP cleavage. Later on, however, the complex undergoes a change and the rate of the exchange between free actin and the actin bound to protamine becomes lower than the rate of the ATPase reaction. It is proposed that the ATP exchanges for ADP directly on the G-actin bound in the complex. ImagesPLATE 1PLATE 2PLATE 3 PMID

  5. RefilinB (FAM101B) targets FilaminA to organize perinuclear actin networks and regulates nuclear shape

    PubMed Central

    Gay, Olivia; Gilquin, Benoît; Nakamura, Fumihiko; Jenkins, Zandra A.; McCartney, Rosannah; Krakow, Deborah; Deshiere, Alexandre; Assard, Nicole; Hartwig, John H.; Robertson, Stephen P.; Baudier, Jacques

    2011-01-01

    The intracellular localization and shape of the nucleus plays a central role in cellular and developmental processes. In fibroblasts, nuclear movement and shape are controlled by a specific perinuclear actin network made of contractile actin filament bundles called transmembrane actin-associated nuclear (TAN) lines that form a structure called the actin cap. The identification of regulatory proteins associated with this specific actin cytoskeletal dynamic is a priority for understanding actin-based changes in nuclear shape and position in normal and pathological situations. Here, we first identify a unique family of actin regulators, the refilin proteins (RefilinA and RefilinB), that stabilize specifically perinuclear actin filament bundles. We next identify the actin-binding filamin A (FLNA) protein as the downstream effector of refilins. Refilins act as molecular switches to convert FLNA from an actin branching protein into one that bundles. In NIH 3T3 fibroblasts, the RefilinB/FLNA complex organizes the perinuclear actin filament bundles forming the actin cap. Finally, we demonstrate that in epithelial normal murine mammary gland (NmuMG) cells, the RefilinB/FLNA complex controls formation of a new perinuclear actin network that accompanies nuclear shape changes during the epithelial–mesenchymal transition (EMT). Our studies open perspectives for further functional analyses of this unique actin-based network and shed light on FLNA function during development and in human syndromes associated with FLNA mutations. PMID:21709252

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  7. Cross-Linking Molecules Modify Composite Actin Networks Independently

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schmoller, K. M.; Lieleg, O.; Bausch, A. R.

    2008-09-01

    While cells make use of many actin binding proteins (ABPs) simultaneously to tailor the mechanical properties of the cytoskeleton, the detailed interplay of different ABPs is not understood. By a combination of macrorheological measurements and confocal microscopy, we show that the ABPs fascin and filamin modify the structural and viscoelastic properties of composite in vitro actin networks independently. The outnumbering ABP dictates the local network structure and therefore also dominates the macromechanical network response.

  8. Diffusing wave spectroscopy microrheology of actin filament networks.

    PubMed Central

    Palmer, A; Xu, J; Kuo, S C; Wirtz, D

    1999-01-01

    Filamentous actin (F-actin), one of the constituents of the cytoskeleton, is believed to be the most important participant in the motion and mechanical integrity of eukaryotic cells. Traditionally, the viscoelastic moduli of F-actin networks have been measured by imposing a small mechanical strain and quantifying the resulting stress. The magnitude of the viscoelastic moduli, their concentration dependence and strain dependence, as well as the viscoelastic nature (solid-like or liquid-like) of networks of uncross-linked F-actin, have been the subjects of debate. Although this paper helps to resolve the debate and establishes the extent of the linear regime of F-actin networks' rheology, we report novel measurements of the high-frequency behavior of networks of F-actin, using a noninvasive light-scattering based technique, diffusing wave spectroscopy (DWS). Because no external strain is applied, our optical assay generates measurements of the mechanical properties of F-actin networks that avoid many ambiguities inherent in mechanical measurements. We observe that the elastic modulus has a small magnitude, no strain dependence, and a weak concentration dependence. Therefore, F-actin alone is not sufficient to generate the elastic modulus necessary to sustain the structural rigidity of most cells or support new cellular protrusions. Unlike previous studies, our measurements show that the mechanical properties of F-actin are highly dependent on the frequency content of the deformation. We show that the loss modulus unexpectedly dominates the elastic modulus at high frequencies, which are key for fast transitions. Finally, the measured mean square displacement of the optical probes, which is also generated by DWS measurements, offers new insight into the local bending fluctuations of the individual actin filaments and shows how they generate enhanced dissipation at short time scales. PMID:9916038

  9. Growing actin networks regulated by obstacle size and shape

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  10. Cortical flow aligns actin filaments to form a furrow

    PubMed Central

    Reymann, Anne-Cecile; Staniscia, Fabio; Erzberger, Anna; Salbreux, Guillaume; Grill, Stephan W

    2016-01-01

    Cytokinesis in eukaryotic cells is often accompanied by actomyosin cortical flow. Over 30 years ago, Borisy and White proposed that cortical flow converging upon the cell equator compresses the actomyosin network to mechanically align actin filaments. However, actin filaments also align via search-and-capture, and to what extent compression by flow or active alignment drive furrow formation remains unclear. Here, we quantify the dynamical organization of actin filaments at the onset of ring assembly in the C. elegans zygote, and provide a framework for determining emergent actomyosin material parameters by the use of active nematic gel theory. We characterize flow-alignment coupling, and verify at a quantitative level that compression by flow drives ring formation. Finally, we find that active alignment enhances but is not required for ring formation. Our work characterizes the physical mechanisms of actomyosin ring formation and highlights the role of flow as a central organizer of actomyosin network architecture. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.17807.001 PMID:27719759

  11. Global treadmilling coordinates actin turnover and controls the size of actin networks.

    PubMed

    Carlier, Marie-France; Shekhar, Shashank

    2017-03-01

    Various cellular processes (including cell motility) are driven by the regulated, polarized assembly of actin filaments into distinct force-producing arrays of defined size and architecture. Branched, linear, contractile and cytosolic arrays coexist in vivo, and cells intricately control the number, length and assembly rate of filaments in these arrays. Recent in vitro and in vivo studies have revealed novel molecular mechanisms that regulate the number of filament barbed and pointed ends and their respective assembly and disassembly rates, thus defining classes of dynamically different filaments, which coexist in the same cell. We propose that a global treadmilling process, in which a steady-state amount of polymerizable actin monomers is established by the dynamics of each network, is responsible for defining the size and turnover of coexisting actin networks. Furthermore, signal-induced changes in the partitioning of actin to distinct arrays (mediated by RHO GTPases) result in the establishment of various steady-state concentrations of polymerizable monomers, thereby globally influencing the growth rate of actin filaments.

  12. The role of actin networks in cellular mechanosensing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Azatov, Mikheil

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

  13. Mechanics of actin networks crosslinked with mutant human α-actinin-4

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Volkmer, Sabine; Blair, Daniel; Kasza, Karen; Weitz, David

    2007-03-01

    Globular actin can be polymerized in vitro to form F-actin in the presence of various binding proteins. These networks often exhibit dramatic nonlinear rheological response to imposed strains. We study the rheological properties of F-actin networks crosslinked with human α-actinin-4. A single genetic mutation of the α-actinin-4 protein is associated with focal and segmented glomerulosclerosis (FSGS), a genetic disorder which leads to renal failure. Mechanically, the mutant crosslinker has an increased binding strength compared to the wild type. We will show that human α-actinin-4, displays a unique stiffening response. Moreover, we also demonstrate that a single point mutation dramatically effects the inherent relaxation time of the crosslinked network.

  14. Surface adsorption and hopping cause probe-size-dependent microrheology of actin networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Jun; Tang, Jay X.

    2011-04-01

    A network of filaments formed primarily by the abundant cytoskeletal protein actin gives animal cells their shape and elasticity. The rheological properties of reconstituted actin networks have been studied by tracking micron-sized probe beads embedded within the networks. We investigate how microrheology depends on surface properties of probe particles by varying the stickiness of their surface. For this purpose, we chose carboxylate polystyrene (PS) beads, silica beads, bovine serum albumin (BSA) -coated PS beads, and polyethylene glycol (PEG) -grafted PS beads, which show descending stickiness to actin filaments, characterized by confocal imaging and microrheology. Probe size dependence of microrheology is observed for all four types of beads. For the slippery PEG beads, particle-tracking microrheology detects weaker networks using smaller beads, which tend to diffuse through the network by hopping from one confinement “cage” to another. This trend is reversed for the other three types of beads, for which microrheology measures stiffer networks for smaller beads due to physisorption of nearby filaments to the bead surface. We explain the probe size dependence with two simple models. We also evaluate depletion effect near nonadsorption bead surface using quantitative image analysis and discuss the possible impact of depletion on microrheology. Analysis of these effects is necessary in order to accurately define the actin network rheology both in vitro and in vivo.

  15. Viscoelastic properties of actin networks influence material transport

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stam, Samantha; Weirich, Kimberly; Gardel, Margaret

    2015-03-01

    Directed flows of cytoplasmic material are important in a variety of biological processes including assembly of a mitotic spindle, retraction of the cell rear during migration, and asymmetric cell division. Networks of cytoskeletal polymers and molecular motors are known to be involved in these events, but how the network mechanical properties are tuned to perform such functions is not understood. Here, we construct networks of either semiflexible actin filaments or rigid bundles with varying connectivity. We find that solutions of rigid rods, where unimpeded sliding of filaments may enhance transport in comparison to unmoving tracks, are the fastest at transporting network components. Entangled solutions of semiflexible actin filaments also transport material, but the entanglements provide resistance. Increasing the elasticity of the actin networks with crosslinking proteins slows network deformation further. However, the length scale of correlated transport in these networks is increased. Our results reveal how the rigidity and connectivity of biopolymers allows material transport to occur over time and length scales required for physiological processes. This work was supported by the U. Chicago MRSEC

  16. Bacterial actin MreB forms antiparallel double filaments

    PubMed Central

    van den Ent, Fusinita; Izoré, Thierry; Bharat, Tanmay AM; Johnson, Christopher M; Löwe, Jan

    2014-01-01

    Filaments of all actin-like proteins known to date are assembled from pairs of protofilaments that are arranged in a parallel fashion, generating polarity. In this study, we show that the prokaryotic actin homologue MreB forms pairs of protofilaments that adopt an antiparallel arrangement in vitro and in vivo. We provide an atomic view of antiparallel protofilaments of Caulobacter MreB as apparent from crystal structures. We show that a protofilament doublet is essential for MreB's function in cell shape maintenance and demonstrate by in vivo site-specific cross-linking the antiparallel orientation of MreB protofilaments in E. coli. 3D cryo-EM shows that pairs of protofilaments of Caulobacter MreB tightly bind to membranes. Crystal structures of different nucleotide and polymerisation states of Caulobacter MreB reveal conserved conformational changes accompanying antiparallel filament formation. Finally, the antimicrobial agents A22/MP265 are shown to bind close to the bound nucleotide of MreB, presumably preventing nucleotide hydrolysis and destabilising double protofilaments. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.02634.001 PMID:24843005

  17. A dynamic formin-dependent deep F-actin network in axons

    PubMed Central

    Ganguly, Archan; Tang, Yong; Wang, Lina; Ladt, Kelsey; Loi, Jonathan; Dargent, Bénédicte; Leterrier, Christophe

    2015-01-01

    Although actin at neuronal growth cones is well-studied, much less is known about actin organization and dynamics along axon shafts and presynaptic boutons. Using probes that selectively label filamentous-actin (F-actin), we found focal “actin hotspots” along axons—spaced ∼3–4 µm apart—where actin undergoes continuous assembly/disassembly. These foci are a nidus for vigorous actin polymerization, generating long filaments spurting bidirectionally along axons—a phenomenon we call “actin trails.” Super-resolution microscopy reveals intra-axonal deep actin filaments in addition to the subplasmalemmal “actin rings” described recently. F-actin hotspots colocalize with stationary axonal endosomes, and blocking vesicle transport diminishes the actin trails, suggesting mechanistic links between vesicles and F-actin kinetics. Actin trails are formin—but not Arp2/3—dependent and help enrich actin at presynaptic boutons. Finally, formin inhibition dramatically disrupts synaptic recycling. Collectively, available data suggest a two-tier F-actin organization in axons, with stable “actin rings” providing mechanical support to the plasma membrane and dynamic "actin trails" generating a flexible cytoskeletal network with putative physiological roles. PMID:26216902

  18. In vitro studies of actin filament and network dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Mullins, R Dyche; Hansen, Scott D

    2013-01-01

    Now that many genomes have been sequenced, a central concern of cell biology is to understand how the proteins they encode work together to create living matter. In vitro studies form an essential part of this program because understanding cellular functions of biological molecules often requires isolating them and reconstituting their activities. In particular, many elements of the actin cytoskeleton were first discovered by biochemical methods and their cellular functions deduced from in vitro experiments. We highlight recent advances that have come from in vitro studies, beginning with studies of actin filaments, and ending with multi-component reconstitutions of complex actin-based processes, including force-generation and cell spreading. We describe both scientific results and the technical innovations that made them possible. PMID:23267766

  19. Microtubules Remodel Actomyosin Networks in Xenopus Egg Extracts via Two Mechanisms of F-Actin Transport

    PubMed Central

    Waterman-Storer, Clare; Duey, Devin Y.; Weber, Kari L.; Keech, John; Cheney, Richard E.; Salmon, E.D.; Bement, William M.

    2000-01-01

    Interactions between microtubules and filamentous actin (F-actin) are crucial for many cellular processes, including cell locomotion and cytokinesis, but are poorly understood. To define the basic principles governing microtubule/F-actin interactions, we used dual-wavelength digital fluorescence and fluorescent speckle microscopy to analyze microtubules and F-actin labeled with spectrally distinct fluorophores in interphase Xenopus egg extracts. In the absence of microtubules, networks of F-actin bundles zippered together or exhibited serpentine gliding along the coverslip. When microtubules were nucleated from Xenopus sperm centrosomes, they were released and translocated away from the aster center. In the presence of microtubules, F-actin exhibited two distinct, microtubule-dependent motilities: rapid (∼250–300 nm/s) jerking and slow (∼50 nm/s), straight gliding. Microtubules remodeled the F-actin network, as F-actin jerking caused centrifugal clearing of F-actin from around aster centers. F-actin jerking occurred when F-actin bound to motile microtubules powered by cytoplasmic dynein. F-actin straight gliding occurred when F-actin bundles translocated along the microtubule lattice. These interactions required Xenopus cytosolic factors. Localization of myosin-II to F-actin suggested it may power F-actin zippering, while localization of myosin-V on microtubules suggested it could mediate interactions between microtubules and F-actin. We examine current models for cytokinesis and cell motility in light of these findings. PMID:10908578

  20. Dexamethasone alters F-actin architecture and promotes cross-linked actin network formation in human trabecular meshwork tissue.

    PubMed

    Clark, Abbot F; Brotchie, Daniel; Read, A Thomas; Hellberg, Peggy; English-Wright, Sherry; Pang, Iok-Hou; Ethier, C Ross; Grierson, Ian

    2005-02-01

    Elevated intraocular pressure is an important risk factor for the development of glaucoma, a leading cause of irreversible blindness. This ocular hypertension is due to increased hydrodynamic resistance to the drainage of aqueous humor through specialized outflow tissues, including the trabecular meshwork (TM) and the endothelial lining of Schlemm's canal. We know that glucocorticoid therapy can cause increased outflow resistance and glaucoma in susceptible individuals, that the cytoskeleton helps regulate aqueous outflow resistance, and that glucocorticoid treatment alters the actin cytoskeleton of cultured TM cells. Our purpose was to characterize the actin cytoskeleton of cells in outflow pathway tissues in situ, to characterize changes in the cytoskeleton due to dexamethasone treatment in situ, and to compare these with changes observed in cell culture. Human ocular anterior segments were perfused with or without 10(-7) M dexamethasone, and F-actin architecture was investigated by confocal laser scanning microscopy. We found that outflow pathway cells contained stress fibers, peripheral actin staining, and occasional actin "tangles." Dexamethasone treatment caused elevated IOP in several eyes and increased overall actin staining, with more actin tangles and the formation of cross-linked actin networks (CLANs). The actin architecture in TM tissues was remarkably similar to that seen in cultured TM cells. Although CLANs have been reported previously in cultured cells, this is the first report of CLANs in tissue. These cytoskeletal changes may be associated with increased aqueous humor outflow resistance after ocular glucocorticoid treatment.

  1. Myosin lever arm directs collective motion on cellular actin network.

    PubMed

    Hariadi, Rizal F; Cale, Mario; Sivaramakrishnan, Sivaraj

    2014-03-18

    The molecular motor myosin teams up to drive muscle contraction, membrane traffic, and cell division in biological cells. Myosin function in cells emerges from the interaction of multiple motors tethered to a scaffold, with surrounding actin filaments organized into 3D networks. Despite the importance of myosin function, the influence of intermotor interactions on collective motion remains poorly understood. In this study, we used precisely engineered myosin assemblies to examine emergence in collective myosin movement. We report that tethering multiple myosin VI motors, but not myosin V motors, modifies their movement trajectories on keratocyte actin networks. Single myosin V and VI dimers display similar skewed trajectories, albeit in opposite directions, when traversing the keratocyte actin network. In contrast, tethering myosin VI motors, but not myosin V motors, progressively straightens the trajectories with increasing myosin number. Trajectory shape of multimotor scaffolds positively correlates with the stiffness of the myosin lever arm. Swapping the flexible myosin VI lever arm for the relatively rigid myosin V lever increases trajectory skewness, and vice versa. A simplified model of coupled motor movement demonstrates that the differences in flexural rigidity of the two myosin lever arms is sufficient to account for the differences in observed behavior of groups of myosin V and VI motors. In accordance with this model trajectory, shapes for scaffolds containing both myosin V and VI are dominated by the myosin with a stiffer lever arm. Our findings suggest that structural features unique to each myosin type may confer selective advantages in cellular functions.

  2. Criticalities in crosslinked actin networks due to myosin activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sheinman, Michael

    2013-03-01

    Many essential processes in cells and tissues, like motility and morphogenesis, are orchestrated by molecular motors applying internal, active stresses on crosslinked networks of actin filaments. Using scaling analysis, mean-field calculation, numerical modelling and in vitro experiments of such active networks we predict and observe different mechanical regimes exhibiting interesting critical behaviours with non-trivial power-law dependencies. Firstly, we find that the presence of active stresses can dramatically increase the stiffness of a floppy network, as was observed in reconstituted intracellular F-actin networks with myosin motors and extracellular gels with contractile cells. Uniform internal stress results in an anomalous, critical mechanical regime only in the vicinity of the rigidity percolation points of the network. However, taking into account heterogeneity of motors, we demonstrate that the motors, stiffening any floppy network, induce large non-affine fluctuations, giving rise to a critical mechanical regime. Secondly, upon increasing motor concentration, the resulting large internal stress is able to significantly enhance unbinding of the network's crosslinks and, therefore, disconnect the initially well-connected network to isolated clusters. However, during this process, when the network approaches marginal connectivity the internal stresses are expected to drop drastically such that the connectivity stabilizes. This general argument and detailed numerical simulations show that motors should drive a well connected network to a close vicinity of a critical point of marginal connectivity. Experiments clearly confirm this conclusion and demonstrate robust critical connectivity of initially well-connected networks, ruptured by the motor activity for a wide range of parameters. M. Sheinman, C.P. Broedersz and F.C. MacKintosh, Phys. Rev. Lett, in press. J. Alvarado, M. Sheinman, A. Sharma, F.C. MacKintosh and G. Koenderink, in preparation.

  3. Form-Finding Model Shows How Cytoskeleton Network Stiffness Is Realized

    PubMed Central

    Gong, Jinghai; Zhang, Daxu; Tseng, Yiider; Li, Baolong; Wirtz, Denis; Schafer, Benjamin William

    2013-01-01

    In eukaryotic cells the actin-cytoskeletal network provides stiffness and the driving force that contributes to changes in cell shape and cell motility, but the elastic behavior of this network is not well understood. In this paper a two dimensional form-finding model is proposed to investigate the elasticity of the actin filament network. Utilizing an initially random array of actin filaments and actin-cross-linking proteins the form-finding model iterates until the random array is brought into a stable equilibrium configuration. With some care given to actin filament density and length, distance between host sites for cross-linkers, and overall domain size the resulting configurations from the form-finding model are found to be topologically similar to cytoskeletal networks in real cells. The resulting network may then be mechanically exercised to explore how the actin filaments deform and align under load and the sensitivity of the network’s stiffness to actin filament density, length, etc. Results of the model are consistent with the experimental literature, e.g. actin filaments tend to re-orient in the direction of stretching; and the filament relative density, filament length, and actin-cross-linking protein’s relative density, control the actin-network stiffness. The model provides a ready means of extension to more complicated domains and a three-dimensional form-finding model is under development as well as models studying the formation of actin bundles. PMID:24146992

  4. The Effect of Crosslinking on the Microscale Stress Response and Molecular Deformations in Actin Networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gurmessa, Bekele; Fitzpatrick, Robert; Valdivia, Jonathon; Anderson, Rae M. R.

    Actin, the most abundant protein in eukaryotic cells, is a semi-flexible biopolymer in the cytoskeleton that plays a crucial structural and mechanical role in cell stability, motion and replication, as well as muscle contraction. Most of these mechanically driven structural changes in cells stem from the complex viscoelastic nature of entangled actin networks and the presence of a myriad of proteins that cross-link actin filaments. Despite their importance, the mechanical response of actin networks is not yet well understood, particularly at the molecular level. Here, we use optical trapping - coupled with fluorescence microscopy - to characterize the microscale stress response and induced filament deformations in entangled and cross-linked actin networks subject to localized mechanical perturbations. In particular, we actively drive a microsphere 10 microns through an entangled or cross- linked actin network at a constant speed and measure the resistive force that the deformed actin filaments exert on the bead during and following strain. We simultaneously visualize and track individual sparsely-labeled actin filaments to directly link force response to molecular deformations, and map the propagation of the initially localized perturbation field throughout the rest of the network (~100 um). By varying the concentration of actin and cross-linkers we directly determine the role of crosslinking and entanglements on the length and time scales of stress propagation, molecular deformation and relaxation mechanisms in actin networks.

  5. Competition between Tropomyosin, Fimbrin, and ADF/Cofilin drives their sorting to distinct actin filament networks.

    PubMed

    Christensen, Jenna R; Hocky, Glen M; Homa, Kaitlin E; Morganthaler, Alisha N; Hitchcock-DeGregori, Sarah E; Voth, Gregory A; Kovar, David R

    2017-03-10

    The fission yeast actin cytoskeleton is an ideal, simplified system to investigate fundamental mechanisms behind cellular self-organization. By focusing on the stabilizing protein tropomyosin Cdc8, bundling protein fimbrin Fim1, and severing protein coffin Adf1, we examined how their pairwise and collective interactions with actin filaments regulate their activity and segregation to functionally diverse F-actin networks. Utilizing multi-color TIRF microscopy of in vitro reconstituted F-actin networks, we observed and characterized two distinct Cdc8 cables loading and spreading cooperatively on individual actin filaments. Furthermore, Cdc8, Fim1, and Adf1 all compete for association with F-actin by different mechanisms, and their cooperative association with actin filaments affects their ability to compete. Finally, competition between Fim1 and Adf1 for F-actin synergizes their activities, promoting rapid displacement of Cdc8 from a dense F-actin network. Our findings reveal that competitive and cooperative interactions between actin binding proteins help define their associations with different F-actin networks.

  6. Pattern formation in actin gels: A study in the mechanics of gels formed by the important cytoskeletal protein actin, especially as applied to cellular motility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balter, Ariel

    We have studied pattern formation in actin gels to better understand how they function in biological systems, especially in the motility mechanism used by some pathogenic bacteria such as Listeria. By coating themselves with certain enzymes, these bacteria appropriate actin (a protein) from the surrounding host cell's cytoplasm and cause a network or "gel" of actin filaments to grow on their outer surface. As the resulting "comet tail" shaped protrusion grows, it pushes the bacterium away. In experiments, polystyrene beads coated with the same enzymes will also generate comet tails and swim in a very similar manner. However, these bead experiments have also generated anomalous results such as the formation of many comet tails. In some experiments, when two comet tails formed they systematically grew into regular, oppositely handed helices. The formation of any comet tails on a bead poses a physical conundrum. The bacterial enzyme coating is asymmetrical so the comet tail forms in a particular place. But the beads are symmetrical, so comet tails formation constitutes symmetry breaking and spontaneous pattern formation. We have modeled this process as a competition between elastic energy (which favors many tails) and chemical energy (which favors few tails). Our analytical model explains the factors that experimentally determine the number of tails, and numerical simulations confirm these predictions. To understand the helical tails, we did extensive data analysis involving image processing, statistical analysis and mathematical modeling of images of the helical tails. We identified some important features of how the twin tails form. For instance, the tail growth rate is independent of drag force, and bead rotation must accompany helical tail formation. We also created a physical model for helical growth. Numerical simulations of our model show that at very low Reynolds number, a cylindrical object growing under the conditions of an actin comet tail can spontaneously

  7. Involvement of β- and γ-actin isoforms in actin cytoskeleton organization and migration abilities of bleb-forming human colon cancer cells

    PubMed Central

    Simiczyjew, Aleksandra; Mazur, Antonina Joanna; Dratkiewicz, Ewelina; Nowak, Dorota

    2017-01-01

    Amoeboid movement is characteristic for rounded cells, which do not form strong adhesion contacts with the ECM and use blebs as migratory protrusions. It is well known that actin is the main component of mature forms of these structures, but the exact role fulfilled by non-muscle actin isoforms β- and γ- in bleb formation and migration of these cells is still not fully understood. The aim of this study was to establish the role of β- and γ-actin in migration of bleb-forming cancer cells using isoform-specific antibodies and expression of fluorescently tagged actin isoforms. We observed, after staining with monoclonal antibodies, that both actins are present in these cells in the form of a cortical ring as well as in the area of blebs. Additionally, using simultaneous expression of differentially tagged β- and γ-actin in cells, we observed that the actin isoforms are present together in a single bleb. They were involved during bleb expansion as well as retraction. Also present in the area of these protrusions formed by both isoforms were the bleb markers–ezrin and myosin II. The overexpression of β- or γ-actin led to actin cytoskeletal rearrangement followed by the growth of migration and invasion abilities of examined human colon cancer cells, LS174T line. In summary these data prove that both actin isoforms have an impact on motility of bleb-forming cancer cells. Moreover, we conclude that monoclonal antibodies directed against actin isoforms in combination with the tagged actins are good tools to study their role in important biological processes. PMID:28333953

  8. Characterization of the ATP-G-actin aggregates formed at low potassium chloride concentration.

    PubMed Central

    Grazi, E; Aleotti, A; Ferri, A

    1984-01-01

    The ATP-G-actin aggregates formed by incubation of ATP-G-actin in 7.5 mM-KCl were characterized by electron-microscopical observation, by high-pressure liquid chromatography and by the study of the 1,N6-etheno-ATP-ATP exchange reaction between the free and the actin-bound nucleotide. In 30 mM-KCl the initial rate of the reduced-viscosity increase is found to be directly related to the amount of the aggregates formed in the course of the preincubation in 7.5 mM-KCl. Images Fig. 1. PMID:6721856

  9. Avalanches, hardening and softening in dense cross-linked actin networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Astrom, Jan; Kumar, Sunil; Vattulainen, Ilpo; Karttunen, Mikko

    2008-03-01

    Actin filament networks enable the cytoskeleton to adjust to internal and external forcing. These active networks can adapt to changes by dynamically adjusting their crosslinks. Here, we study actin filaments as elastic fibers having finite dimensions. We employ a full three-dimensional model to study the elastic properties of actin networks by computer simulations. We model a dense actin network with the crosslinks being approximately 1μm apart. The results show that dense actin networks, without any pre-straining, are characterized by (a) strain hardening without entropic elasticity, (b) 'viscotic' hysteresis in the case of strong crosslinks, (c) avalanches of crosslink slippage leading to strain softening in the case of breakable crosslinks, and (d) spontaneous formation of stress fibers in the case of active crosslink formation and destruction. We will discuss the relation to recent experimental observations.

  10. Effects of filament rigidity in myosin II-induced actin network contractility and dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weirich, Kimberly; Gardel, Margaret

    2014-03-01

    Cells change shape, deforming to move and divide. The dynamic protein scaffold that shapes the cell is the cortex, a disordered, thin network of actin filaments. Random, local stresses generated by myosin II in the network create cellular-scale deformations. Myosin induced buckling and severing of actin filaments has been shown to underlie the contractility of two-dimensional disordered actin networks. This non-linear elastic response of actin filaments is thought to be an essential symmetry breaking mechanism to produce robust contractility in disordered actomyosin networks. To test this idea, we explore the effects of an actin bundling protein fascin, a crosslinker which induces polarity specific bundling of actin filaments, to create a network of F-actin bundles. We investigate myosin-induced stresses in a network of randomly oriented actin filaments, confined to a thin sheet at a supported lipid bilayer surface through a crowding agent. We find fascin-bundled filaments are less prone to filament buckling and show increased filament sliding, causing the myosin activity to induce network reorganization rather than contraction. Thus, changes in the filament bending rigidity in motor-filament systems can drive the system between distinct states with unique dynamic and mechanical signatures.

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

    PubMed Central

    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

  12. Comparative analysis of tools for live cell imaging of actin network architecture.

    PubMed

    Belin, Brittany J; Goins, Lauren M; Mullins, R Dyche

    2014-01-01

    Fluorescent derivatives of actin and actin-binding domains are powerful tools for studying actin filament architecture and dynamics in live cells. Growing evidence, however, indicates that these probes are biased, and their cellular distribution does not accurately reflect that of the cytoskeleton. To understand the strengths and weaknesses of commonly used live-cell probes--fluorescent protein fusions of actin, Lifeact, F-tractin, and actin-binding domains from utrophin--we compared their distributions in cells derived from various model organisms. We focused on five actin networks: the peripheral cortex, lamellipodial and lamellar networks, filopodial bundles, and stress fibers. Using phalloidin as a standard, we identified consistent biases in the distribution of each probe. The localization of F-tractin is the most similar to that of phalloidin but induces organism-specific changes in cell morphology. Both Lifeact and GFP-actin concentrate in lamellipodial actin networks but are excluded from lamellar networks and filopodia. In contrast, the full utrophin actin-binding domain (Utr261) binds filaments of the lamellum but only weakly localizes to lamellipodia, while a shorter variant (Utr230) is restricted to the most stable subpopulations of actin filaments: cortical networks and stress fibers. In some cells, Utr230 also detects Golgi-associated filaments, previously detected by immunofluorescence but not visible by phalloidin staining. Consistent with its localization, Utr230 exhibits slow rates of fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP) compared to F-tractin, Utr261 and Lifeact, suggesting that it may be more useful for FRAP- and photo-activation-based studies of actin network dynamics.

  13. Comparative analysis of tools for live cell imaging of actin network architecture

    PubMed Central

    Belin, Brittany J; Goins, Lauren M; Mullins, R Dyche

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Fluorescent derivatives of actin and actin-binding domains are powerful tools for studying actin filament architecture and dynamics in live cells. Growing evidence, however, indicates that these probes are biased, and their cellular distribution does not accurately reflect that of the cytoskeleton. To understand the strengths and weaknesses of commonly used live-cell probes—fluorescent protein fusions of actin, Lifeact, F-tractin, and actin-binding domains from utrophin—we compared their distributions in cells derived from various model organisms. We focused on five actin networks: the peripheral cortex, lamellipodial and lamellar networks, filopodial bundles, and stress fibers. Using phalloidin as a standard, we identified consistent biases in the distribution of each probe. The localization of F-tractin is the most similar to that of phalloidin but induces organism-specific changes in cell morphology. Both Lifeact and GFP-actin concentrate in lamellipodial actin networks but are excluded from lamellar networks and filopodia. In contrast, the full utrophin actin-binding domain (Utr261) binds filaments of the lamellum but only weakly localizes to lamellipodia, while a shorter variant (Utr230) is restricted to the most stable subpopulations of actin filaments: cortical networks and stress fibers. In some cells, Utr230 also detects Golgi-associated filaments, previously detected by immunofluorescence but not visible by phalloidin staining. Consistent with its localization, Utr230 exhibits slow rates of fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP) compared to F-tractin, Utr261 and Lifeact, suggesting that it may be more useful for FRAP- and photo-activation-based studies of actin network dynamics. PMID:26317264

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-01-01

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

  15. Self-organized DNA/F-actin gels: entangled networks of nematic domains with tunable density

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Butler, John; Zribi, Olena; Smalyukh, Ivan; Hwee Lai, Ghee; Golestanian, Ramin; Angelini, Thomas; Wong, Gerard

    2008-03-01

    We examine mixtures of DNA and F-actin as a model system of like-charged rigid rods and flexible chains. Confocal microscopy reveals the formation of elongated nematic F-actin domains reticulated via defect-free vertices into a network, all embedded in a mesh of random DNA. Synchrotron x-ray scattering results indicate that the DNA mesh squeezes the F-actin domains into a nematic state via the osmotic pressure of uncondensed counterions, so that the inter-actin spacing within the domains decreases with increasing DNA concentration. These observations are consistent with arguments based on electrostatics and nematic elasticity.

  16. Why is Actin Patchy?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carlsson, Anders

    2009-03-01

    The intracellular protein actin, by reversibly polymerizing into filaments, generates forces for motion and shape changes of many types of biological cells. Fluorescence imaging studies show that actin often occurs in the form of localized patches of size roughly one micrometer at the cell membrane. Patch formation is most prevalent when the free-actin concentration is low. I investigate possible mechanisms for the formation of actin patches by numerically simulating the ``dendritic nucleation'' model of actin network growth. The simulations include filament growth, capping, branching, severing, and debranching. The attachment of membrane-bound activators to actin filaments, and subsequent membrane diffusion of unattached activators, are also included. It is found that as the actin concentration increases from zero, the actin occurs in patches at lower actin concentrations, and the size of the patches increases with increasing actin concentration. At a critical value of the actin concentration, the system undergoes a transition to complete coverage. The results are interpreted within the framework of reaction-diffusion equations in two dimensions.

  17. Passive and active microrheology for cross-linked F-actin networks in vitro.

    PubMed

    Lee, Hyungsuk; Ferrer, Jorge M; Nakamura, Fumihiko; Lang, Matthew J; Kamm, Roger D

    2010-04-01

    Actin filament (F-actin) is one of the dominant structural constituents in the cytoskeleton. Orchestrated by various actin-binding proteins (ABPs), F-actin is assembled into higher-order structures such as bundles and networks that provide mechanical support for the cell and play important roles in numerous cellular processes. Although mechanical properties of F-actin networks have been extensively studied, the underlying mechanisms for network elasticity are not fully understood, in part because different measurements probe different length and force scales. Here, we developed both passive and active microrheology techniques using optical tweezers to estimate the mechanical properties of F-actin networks at a length scale comparable to cells. For the passive approach we tracked the motion of a thermally fluctuating colloidal sphere to estimate the frequency-dependent complex shear modulus of the network. In the active approach, we used an optical trap to oscillate an embedded microsphere and monitored the response in order to obtain network viscoelasticity over a physiologically relevant force range. While both active and passive measurements exhibit similar results at low strain, the F-actin network subject to high strain exhibits non-linear behavior which is analogous to the strain-hardening observed in macroscale measurements. Using confocal and total internal reflection fluorescent microscopy, we also characterize the microstructure of reconstituted F-actin networks in terms of filament length, mesh size and degree of bundling. Finally, we propose a model of network connectivity by investigating the effect of filament length on the mechanical properties and structure.

  18. Relating microstructure to rheology of a bundled and cross-linked F-actin network in vitro

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shin, J. H.; Gardel, M. L.; Mahadevan, L.; Matsudaira, P.; Weitz, D. A.

    2004-06-01

    The organization of individual actin filaments into higher-order structures is controlled by actin-binding proteins (ABPs). Although the biological significance of the ABPs is well documented, little is known about how bundling and cross-linking quantitatively affect the microstructure and mechanical properties of actin networks. Here we quantify the effect of the ABP scruin on actin networks by using imaging techniques, cosedimentation assays, multiparticle tracking, and bulk rheology. We show how the structure of the actin network is modified as the scruin concentration is varied, and we correlate these structural changes to variations in the resultant network elasticity.

  19. Actin kinetics shapes cortical network structure and mechanics

    PubMed Central

    Fritzsche, Marco; Erlenkämper, Christoph; Moeendarbary, Emad; Charras, Guillaume; Kruse, Karsten

    2016-01-01

    The actin cortex of animal cells is the main determinant of cellular mechanics. The continuous turnover of cortical actin filaments enables cells to quickly respond to stimuli. Recent work has shown that most of the cortical actin is generated by only two actin nucleators, the Arp2/3 complex and the formin Diaph1. However, our understanding of their interplay, their kinetics, and the length distribution of the filaments that they nucleate within living cells is poor. Such knowledge is necessary for a thorough comprehension of cellular processes and cell mechanics from basic polymer physics principles. We determined cortical assembly rates in living cells by using single-molecule fluorescence imaging in combination with stochastic simulations. We find that formin-nucleated filaments are, on average, 10 times longer than Arp2/3-nucleated filaments. Although formin-generated filaments represent less than 10% of all actin filaments, mechanical measurements indicate that they are important determinants of cortical elasticity. Tuning the activity of actin nucleators to alter filament length distribution may thus be a mechanism allowing cells to adjust their macroscopic mechanical properties to their physiological needs. PMID:27152338

  20. Orientational Order of the Lamellipodial Actin Network as Demonstrated in Living Motile CellsV⃞

    PubMed Central

    Verkhovsky, Alexander B.; Chaga, Oleg Y.; Schaub, Sébastien; Svitkina, Tatyana M.; Meister, Jean-Jacques; Borisy, Gary G.

    2003-01-01

    Lamellipodia of crawling cells represent both the motor for cell advance and the primary building site for the actin cytoskeleton. The organization of actin in the lamellipodium reflects actin dynamics and is of critical importance for the mechanism of cell motility. In previous structural studies, the lamellipodial actin network was analyzed primarily by electron microscopy (EM). An understanding of lamellipodial organization would benefit significantly if the EM data were complemented and put into a kinetic context by establishing correspondence with structural features observable at the light microscopic level in living cells. Here, we use an enhanced phase contrast microscopy technique to visualize an apparent long-range diagonal actin meshwork in the advancing lamellipodia of living cells. Visualization of this meshwork permitted a correlative light and electron microscopic approach that validated the underlying organization of lamellipodia. The linear features in the light microscopic meshwork corresponded to regions of greater actin filament density. Orientation of features was analyzed quantitatively and compared with the orientation of actin filaments at the EM level. We infer that the light microscopic meshwork reflects the orientational order of actin filaments which, in turn, is related to their branching angle. PMID:13679520

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

    PubMed Central

    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.

    2016-01-01

    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. PMID:26873105

  2. Crenactin forms actin-like double helical filaments regulated by arcadin-2

    PubMed Central

    Izoré, Thierry; Kureisaite-Ciziene, Danguole; McLaughlin, Stephen H; Löwe, Jan

    2016-01-01

    The similarity of eukaryotic actin to crenactin, a filament-forming protein from the crenarchaeon Pyrobaculum calidifontis supports the theory of a common origin of Crenarchaea and Eukaryotes. Monomeric structures of crenactin and actin are similar, although their filament architectures were suggested to be different. Here we report that crenactin forms bona fide double helical filaments that show exceptional similarity to eukaryotic F-actin. With cryo-electron microscopy and helical reconstruction we solved the structure of the crenactin filament to 3.8 Å resolution. When forming double filaments, the 'hydrophobic plug' loop in crenactin rearranges. Arcadin-2, also encoded by the arcade gene cluster, binds tightly with its C-terminus to the hydrophobic groove of crenactin. Binding is reminiscent of eukaryotic actin modulators such as cofilin and thymosin β4 and arcadin-2 is a depolymeriser of crenactin filaments. Our work further supports the theory of shared ancestry of Eukaryotes and Crenarchaea. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.21600.001 PMID:27852434

  3. A single charge in the actin binding domain of fascin can independently tune the linear and non-linear response of an actin bundle network.

    PubMed

    Maier, M; Müller, K W; Heussinger, C; Köhler, S; Wall, W A; Bausch, A R; Lieleg, O

    2015-05-01

    Actin binding proteins (ABPs) not only set the structure of actin filament assemblies but also mediate the frequency-dependent viscoelastic moduli of cross-linked and bundled actin networks. Point mutations in the actin binding domain of those ABPs can tune the association and dissociation dynamics of the actin/ABP bond and thus modulate the network mechanics both in the linear and non-linear response regime. We here demonstrate how the exchange of a single charged amino acid in the actin binding domain of the ABP fascin triggers such a modulation of the network rheology. Whereas the overall structure of the bundle networks is conserved, the transition point from strain-hardening to strain-weakening sensitively depends on the cross-linker off-rate and the applied shear rate. Our experimental results are consistent both with numerical simulations of a cross-linked bundle network and a theoretical description of the bundle network mechanics which is based on non-affine bending deformations and force-dependent cross-link dynamics.

  4. Quantifying the contribution of actin networks to the elastic strength of fibroblasts.

    PubMed

    Ananthakrishnan, Revathi; Guck, Jochen; Wottawah, Falk; Schinkinger, Stefan; Lincoln, Bryan; Romeyke, Maren; Moon, Tess; Käs, Josef

    2006-09-21

    The structural models created to understand the cytoskeletal mechanics of cells in suspension are described here. Suspended cells can be deformed by well-defined surface stresses in an Optical Stretcher [Guck, J., Ananthakrishnan, R., Mahmood, H., Moon, T.J., Cunningham, C.C., Käs, J., 2001. The optical stretcher: a novel laser tool to micromanipulate cells. Biophys. J. 81(2), 767-784], a two-beam optical trap designed for the contact-free deformation of cells. Suspended cells have a well-defined cytoskeleton, displaying a radially symmetric actin cortical network underlying the cell membrane with no actin stress fibers, and microtubules and intermediate filaments in the interior. Based on experimental data using suspended fibroblasts, we create two structural models: a thick shell actin cortex model that describes cell deformation for a localized stress distribution on these cells and a three-layered model that considers the entire cytoskeleton when a broad stress distribution is applied. Applying the models to data, we obtain a (actin) cortical shear moduli G of approximately 220 Pa for normal fibroblasts and approximately 185 Pa for malignantly transformed fibroblasts. Additionally, modeling the cortex as a transiently crosslinked isotropic actin network, we show that actin and its crosslinkers must be co-localized into a tight shell to achieve these cortical strengths. The similar moduli values and cortical actin and crosslinker densities but different deformabilities of the normal and cancerous cells suggest that a cell's structural strength is not solely determined by cytoskeletal composition but equally importantly by (actin) cytoskeletal architecture via differing cortical thicknesses. We also find that although the interior structural elements (microtubules, nucleus) contribute to the deformed cell's exact shape via their loose coupling to the cortex, it is the outer actin cortical shell (and its thickness) that mainly determines the cell's structural

  5. Auxins and Cytokinins as Antipodal Modulators of Elasticity within the Actin Network of Plant Cells.

    PubMed Central

    Grabski, S.; Schindler, M.

    1996-01-01

    The cytoskeleton of plant and animal cells serves as a transmitter, transducer, and effector of cell signaling mechanisms. In plants, pathways for proliferation, differentiation, intracellular vesicular transport, cell-wall biosynthesis, symbiosis, secretion, and membrane recycling depend on the organization and dynamic properties of actin- and tubulin-based structures that are either associated with the plasma membrane or traverse the cytoplasm. Recently, a new in vivo cytoskeletal assay (cell optical displacement assay) was introduced to measure the tension within subdomains (cortical, transvacuolar, and perinuclear) of the actin network in living plant cells. Cell optical displacement assay measurements within soybean (Glycine max [L.]) root cells previously demonstrated that lipophilic signals, e.g. linoleic acid and arachidonic acid or changes in cytoplasmic pH gradients, could induce significant reductions in the tension within the actin network of transvacuolar strands. In contrast, enhancement of cytoplasmic free Ca2+ resulted in an increase in tension. In the present communication we have used these measurements to show that a similar antipodal pattern of activity exists for auxins and cytokinins (in their ability to modify the tension within the actin network of plant cells). It is suggested that these growth substances exert their effect on the cytoskeleton through the activation of signaling cascades, which result in the production of lipophilic and ionic second messengers, both of which have been demonstrated to directly effect the tension within the actin network of soybean root cells. PMID:12226233

  6. Strain hardening, avalanches, and strain softening in dense cross-linked actin networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Åström, Jan A.; Kumar, P. B. Sunil; Vattulainen, Ilpo; Karttunen, Mikko

    2008-05-01

    Actin filament networks enable the cytoskeleton to adjust to internal and external forcing. These dynamic networks can adapt to changes by dynamically adjusting their cross-links. Here, we model actin filaments as cross-linked elastic fibers of finite dimensions, with the cross-links being approximately 1μm apart, and employ a full three-dimensional model to study their elastic properties by computer simulations. The results show compelling evidence that dense actin networks are characterized by (a) strain hardening without entropic elasticity, (b) avalanches of cross-link slippage leading to strain softening in the case of breakable cross-links, and (c) spontaneous formation of stress fibers in the case of dynamic cross-link formation and destruction.

  7. Action of the mechanical disruption of the actin network on the gravisensitivity of the root statocyte

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lefranc, A.; Jeune, B.; Driss-Ecole, D.; Perbal, G.

    The effects of the mechanical disruption of the thin actin network of statocytes on gravisensitivity have been studied on lentil roots. Seedling roots were first inverted for 7 min (root tip upward) and then placed in the downward (normal) position for 7 min before gravitropic stimulation in the horizontal position. The period of inversion allowed the amyloplasts to move from the distal part to the proximal part of the statocyte, but did not fully sediment. When the roots were returned to the tip down position, the amyloplasts moved toward the distal part, but also did not completely sediment by the time the roots were placed horizontally. Thus, in these roots the amyloplasts could be still moving toward the distal wall after they had been replaced in the normal position and the actin network should not be fully restored. Gravisensitivity was estimated by the analysis of the dose-response curves of vertical and treated (inverted and returned to downward position) roots. The only effect, which has been observed on treated roots, was a delay of graviresponse for about 1 min. Our interpretation of this result is that in vertical roots the amyloplasts can exert tensions in the actin network that are directly transmitted to mechanoreceptors located in the plasma membrane. In roots with a partially disrupted actin network, a delay of 1 min is necessary for the amyloplasts to activate mechanoreceptors.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  9. Buckling-induced F-actin fragmentation modulates the contraction of active cytoskeletal networks.

    PubMed

    Li, Jing; Biel, Thomas; Lomada, Pranith; Yu, Qilin; Kim, Taeyoon

    2017-04-11

    Actomyosin contractility originating from interactions between F-actin and myosin facilitates various structural reorganizations of the actin cytoskeleton. Cross-linked actomyosin networks show a tendency to contract to single or multiple foci, which has been investigated extensively in numerous studies. Recently, it was suggested that suppression of F-actin buckling via an increase in bending rigidity significantly reduces network contraction. In this study, we demonstrate that networks may show the largest contraction at intermediate bending rigidity, not at the lowest rigidity, if filaments are severed by buckling arising from myosin activity as demonstrated in recent experiments; if filaments are very flexible, frequent severing events can severely deteriorate network connectivity, leading to the formation of multiple small foci and low network contraction. By contrast, if filaments are too stiff, the networks exhibit minimal contraction due to the inhibition of filament buckling. This study reveals that buckling-induced filament severing can modulate the contraction of active cytoskeletal networks, which has been neglected to date.

  10. Interaction between Calcium and Actin in Guard Cell and Pollen Signaling Networks

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Dong-Hua; Acharya, Biswa R.; Liu, Wei; Zhang, Wei

    2013-01-01

    Calcium (Ca2+) plays important roles in plant growth, development, and signal transduction. It is a vital nutrient for plant physical design, such as cell wall and membrane, and also serves as a counter-cation for biochemical, inorganic, and organic anions, and more particularly, its concentration change in cytosol is a ubiquitous second messenger in plant physiological signaling in responses to developmental and environmental stimuli. Actin cytoskeleton is well known for its importance in cellular architecture maintenance and its significance in cytoplasmic streaming and cell division. In plant cell system, the actin dynamics is a process of polymerization and de-polymerization of globular actin and filamentous actin and that acts as an active regulator for calcium signaling by controlling calcium evoked physiological responses. The elucidation of the interaction between calcium and actin dynamics will be helpful for further investigation of plant cell signaling networks at molecular level. This review mainly focuses on the recent advances in understanding the interaction between the two aforementioned signaling components in two well-established model systems of plant, guard cell, and pollen. PMID:27137395

  11. Prestressed F-actin networks cross-linked by hinged filamins replicate mechanical properties of cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gardel, M. L.; Nakamura, F.; Hartwig, J. H.; Crocker, J. C.; Stossel, T. P.; Weitz, D. A.

    2006-02-01

    We show that actin filaments, shortened to physiological lengths by gelsolin and cross-linked with recombinant human filamins (FLNs), exhibit dynamic elastic properties similar to those reported for live cells. To achieve elasticity values of comparable magnitude to those of cells, the in vitro network must be subjected to external prestress, which directly controls network elasticity. A molecular requirement for the strain-related behavior at physiological conditionsis a flexible hinge found in FLNa and some FLNb molecules. Basic physical properties of the in vitro filamin-F-actin network replicate the essential mechanical properties of living cells. This physical behavior could accommodate passive deformation and internal organelle trafficking at low strains yet resist externally or internally generated high shear forces. cytoskeleton | cell mechanics | nonlinear rheology

  12. The Eps8/IRSp53/VASP Network Differentially Controls Actin Capping and Bundling in Filopodia Formation

    PubMed Central

    Milanesi, Francesca; Di Fiore, Pier Paolo; Menna, Elisabetta; Matteoli, Michela; Gov, Nir S.; Scita, Giorgio; Ciliberto, Andrea

    2011-01-01

    There is a body of literature that describes the geometry and the physics of filopodia using either stochastic models or partial differential equations and elasticity and coarse-grained theory. Comparatively, there is a paucity of models focusing on the regulation of the network of proteins that control the formation of different actin structures. Using a combination of in-vivo and in-vitro experiments together with a system of ordinary differential equations, we focused on a small number of well-characterized, interacting molecules involved in actin-dependent filopodia formation: the actin remodeler Eps8, whose capping and bundling activities are a function of its ligands, Abi-1 and IRSp53, respectively; VASP and Capping Protein (CP), which exert antagonistic functions in controlling filament elongation. The model emphasizes the essential role of complexes that contain the membrane deforming protein IRSp53, in the process of filopodia initiation. This model accurately accounted for all observations, including a seemingly paradoxical result whereby genetic removal of Eps8 reduced filopodia in HeLa, but increased them in hippocampal neurons, and generated quantitative predictions, which were experimentally verified. The model further permitted us to explain how filopodia are generated in different cellular contexts, depending on the dynamic interaction established by Eps8, IRSp53 and VASP with actin filaments, thus revealing an unexpected plasticity of the signaling network that governs the multifunctional activities of its components in the formation of filopodia. PMID:21814501

  13. Branching influences force-velocity curves and length fluctuations in actin networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hansda, Deepak Kumar; Sen, Shamik; Padinhateeri, Ranjith

    2014-12-01

    We investigate collective dynamics of branched actin networks growing against a rigid movable wall constrained by a resistive force. Computing the force velocity relations, we show that the stall force of such networks depends not only on the average number of filaments touching the wall, but also on the amount of fluctuation of the leading edge of the network. These differences arise due to differences in the network architecture, namely, distance between two adjacent branching points and the initial distance of the starting filament from the wall, with their relative magnitudes influencing the nature of the force velocity curves (convex versus concave). We also show that the introduction of branching results in nonmonotonic diffusion constant, a quantity that measures the growth in length fluctuation of the leading edge of the network, as a function of externally applied force. Together our results demonstrate how the collective dynamics of a branched network differs from that of a parallel filament network.

  14. Memo-RhoA-mDia1 signaling controls microtubules, the actin network, and adhesion site formation in migrating cells.

    PubMed

    Zaoui, Kossay; Honoré, Stéphane; Isnardon, Daniel; Braguer, Diane; Badache, Ali

    2008-11-03

    Actin assembly at the cell front drives membrane protrusion and initiates the cell migration cycle. Microtubules (MTs) extend within forward protrusions to sustain cell polarity and promote adhesion site turnover. Memo is an effector of the ErbB2 receptor tyrosine kinase involved in breast carcinoma cell migration. However, its mechanism of action remained unknown. We report in this study that Memo controls ErbB2-regulated MT dynamics by altering the transition frequency between MT growth and shortening phases. Moreover, although Memo-depleted cells can assemble the Rac1-dependent actin meshwork and form lamellipodia, they show defective localization of lamellipodial markers such as alpha-actinin-1 and a reduced number of short-lived adhesion sites underlying the advancing edge of migrating cells. Finally, we demonstrate that Memo is required for the localization of the RhoA guanosine triphosphatase and its effector mDia1 to the plasma membrane and that Memo-RhoA-mDia1 signaling coordinates the organization of the lamellipodial actin network, adhesion site formation, and MT outgrowth within the cell leading edge to sustain cell motility.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weichsel, Julian; Schwarz, Ulrich S.

    2013-03-01

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

  16. Actinous enigma or enigmatic actin

    PubMed Central

    Povarova, Olga I; Uversky, Vladimir N; Kuznetsova, Irina M; Turoverov, Konstantin K

    2014-01-01

    Being the most abundant protein of the eukaryotic cell, actin continues to keep its secrets for more than 60 years. Everything about this protein, its structure, functions, and folding, is mysteriously counterintuitive, and this review represents an attempt to solve some of the riddles and conundrums commonly found in the field of actin research. In fact, actin is a promiscuous binder with a wide spectrum of biological activities. It can exist in at least three structural forms, globular, fibrillar, and inactive (G-, F-, and I-actin, respectively). G-actin represents a thermodynamically instable, quasi-stationary state, which is formed in vivo as a result of the energy-intensive, complex posttranslational folding events controlled and driven by cellular folding machinery. The G-actin structure is dependent on the ATP and Mg2+ binding (which in vitro is typically substituted by Ca2+) and protein is easily converted to the I-actin by the removal of metal ions and by action of various denaturing agents (pH, temperature, and chemical denaturants). I-actin cannot be converted back to the G-form. Foldable and “natively folded” forms of actin are always involved in interactions either with the specific protein partners, such as Hsp70 chaperone, prefoldin, and the CCT chaperonin during the actin folding in vivo or with Mg2+ and ATP as it takes place in the G-form. We emphasize that the solutions for the mysteries of actin multifunctionality, multistructurality, and trapped unfolding can be found in the quasi-stationary nature of this enigmatic protein, which clearly possesses many features attributed to both globular and intrinsically disordered proteins.

  17. Arf1 and Arf6 Promote Ventral Actin Structures formed by acute Activation of Protein Kinase C and Src

    PubMed Central

    Caviston, Juliane P.; Cohen, Lee Ann; Donaldson, Julie G.

    2016-01-01

    Arf proteins regulate membrane traffic and organelle structure. Although Arf6 is known to initiate actin-based changes in cell surface architecture, Arf1 may also function at the plasma membrane. Here we show that acute activation of protein kinase C (PKC) induced by the phorbol ester PMA led to the formation of motile actin structures on the ventral surface of Beas-2b cells, a lung bronchial epithelial cell line. Ventral actin structures also formed in PMA-treated HeLa cells that had elevated levels of Arf activation. For both cell types, formation of the ventral actin structures was enhanced by expression of active forms of either Arf1 or Arf6, and by the expression of guanine nucleotide exchange factors that activate these Arfs. By contrast, formation of these structures was blocked by inhibitors of PKC and Src, and required phosphatidylinositol 4, 5-bisphosphate, Rac, Arf6 and Arf1. Furthermore, expression of ASAP1, an Arf1 GTPase activating protein (GAP) was more effective at inhibiting the ventral actin structures than was ACAP1, an Arf6 GAP. This study adds to the expanding role for Arf1 in the periphery and identifies a requirement for Arf1, a “Golgi Arf”, in the reorganization of the cortical actin cytoskeleton on ventral surfaces, against the substratum. PMID:24916416

  18. Mitotic cells form actin-based bridges with adjacent cells to provide intercellular communication during rounding.

    PubMed

    Fykerud, Tone A; Knudsen, Lars M; Totland, Max Z; Sørensen, Vigdis; Dahal-Koirala, Shiva; Lothe, Ragnhild A; Brech, Andreas; Leithe, Edward

    2016-11-01

    In order to achieve accurate chromosome segregation, eukaryotic cells undergo a dramatic change in morphology to obtain a spherical shape during mitosis. Interphase cells communicate directly with each other by exchanging ions and small molecules via gap junctions, which have important roles in controlling cell growth and differentiation. As cells round up during mitosis, the gap junctional communication between mitotic cells and adjacent interphase cells ceases. Whether mitotic cells use alternative mechanisms for mediating direct cell-cell communication during rounding is currently unknown. Here, we have studied the mechanisms involved in the remodeling of gap junctions during mitosis. We further demonstrate that mitotic cells are able to form actin-based plasma membrane bridges with adjacent cells during rounding. These structures, termed "mitotic nanotubes," were found to be involved in mediating the transport of cytoplasm, including Rab11-positive vesicles, between mitotic cells and adjacent cells. Moreover, a subpool of the gap-junction channel protein connexin43 localized in these intercellular bridges during mitosis. Collectively, the data provide new insights into the mechanisms involved in the remodeling of gap junctions during mitosis and identify actin-based plasma membrane bridges as a novel means of communication between mitotic cells and adjacent cells during rounding.

  19. Mitotic cells form actin-based bridges with adjacent cells to provide intercellular communication during rounding

    PubMed Central

    Fykerud, Tone A.; Knudsen, Lars M.; Totland, Max Z.; Dahal-Koirala, Shiva; Lothe, Ragnhild A.; Brech, Andreas; Leithe, Edward

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT In order to achieve accurate chromosome segregation, eukaryotic cells undergo a dramatic change in morphology to obtain a spherical shape during mitosis. Interphase cells communicate directly with each other by exchanging ions and small molecules via gap junctions, which have important roles in controlling cell growth and differentiation. As cells round up during mitosis, the gap junctional communication between mitotic cells and adjacent interphase cells ceases. Whether mitotic cells use alternative mechanisms for mediating direct cell-cell communication during rounding is currently unknown. Here, we have studied the mechanisms involved in the remodeling of gap junctions during mitosis. We further demonstrate that mitotic cells are able to form actin-based plasma membrane bridges with adjacent cells during rounding. These structures, termed “mitotic nanotubes,” were found to be involved in mediating the transport of cytoplasm, including Rab11-positive vesicles, between mitotic cells and adjacent cells. Moreover, a subpool of the gap-junction channel protein connexin43 localized in these intercellular bridges during mitosis. Collectively, the data provide new insights into the mechanisms involved in the remodeling of gap junctions during mitosis and identify actin-based plasma membrane bridges as a novel means of communication between mitotic cells and adjacent cells during rounding. PMID:27625181

  20. Crosslinked actin networks show liquid crystal elastomer behaviour, including soft-mode elasticity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dalhaimer, Paul; Discher, Dennis E.; Lubensky, Tom C.

    2007-05-01

    Actin filament networks with protein crosslinks of distinct length and flexibility resemble liquid crystal elastomers. We simulate actin filament systems with flexible crosslinkers of varying length and connectivity to understand general phase behaviour and elasticity. Simulated networks with very short filaments and long crosslinkers resemble the cytoskeleton of the red blood cell and remain isotropic in compression and shear, seeming well-suited to blood flow. In contrast, networks with longer filaments as found in many cell types show three regimes of nematic phase behaviour dependent on crosslinker length: (1) `loose' networks are isotropic at zero stress but align under compression or shear; (2) `semi-loose' networks are nematic at low stress but become isotropic under dilation and (3) `tight' networks possess a locked-in nematic order as represented by the cytoskeleton of the outer hair cell in the ear, for which anisotropic compliance directs sound propagation. Furthermore, for a subset of loose networks with `periodic' connections among filaments, extremely soft stress-strain behaviour is found, as predicted for liquid crystal elastomers.

  1. The spatial response of nonlinear strain propagation in response to actively driven microspheres through entangled actin networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Falzone, Tobias; Blair, Savanna; Robertson-Anderson, Rae

    2015-03-01

    The semiflexible biopolymer actin, a ubiquitous component of nearly all biological organisms, plays an important role in many mechanically-driven processes such as muscle contraction, cancer invasion and cell motility. As such, entangled actin networks, which possess unique and complex viscoelastic properties, have been the subject of much theoretical and experimental work. However, due to this viscoelastic complexity, much is still unknown regarding the correlation of the applied stress on actin networks to the induced filament strain at the molecular and micro scale. Here, we use simultaneous optical trapping and fluorescence microscopy to characterize the link between applied microscopic forces and strain propagation as a function of strain rate and concentration. Specifically, we track fiduciary markers on entangled actin filaments before, during and after actively driving embedded microspheres through the network. These measurements provide much needed insight into the molecular-level dynamics connecting stress and strain in semiflexible polymer networks.

  2. AKAP220 manages apical actin networks that coordinate aquaporin-2 location and renal water reabsorption

    PubMed Central

    Whiting, Jennifer L.; Ogier, Leah; Forbush, Katherine A.; Bucko, Paula; Gopalan, Janani; Seternes, Ole-Morten; Langeberg, Lorene K.; Scott, John D.

    2016-01-01

    Filtration through the kidney eliminates toxins, manages electrolyte balance, and controls water homeostasis. Reabsorption of water from the luminal fluid of the nephron occurs through aquaporin-2 (AQP2) water pores in principal cells that line the kidney-collecting duct. This vital process is impeded by formation of an “actin barrier” that obstructs the passive transit of AQP2 to the plasma membrane. Bidirectional control of AQP2 trafficking is managed by hormones and signaling enzymes. We have discovered that vasopressin-independent facets of this homeostatic mechanism are under the control of A-Kinase Anchoring Protein 220 (AKAP220; product of the Akap11 gene). CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing and imaging approaches show that loss of AKAP220 disrupts apical actin networks in organoid cultures. Similar defects are evident in tissue sections from AKAP220-KO mice. Biochemical analysis of AKAP220-null kidney extracts detected reduced levels of active RhoA GTPase, a well-known modulator of the actin cytoskeleton. Fluorescent imaging of kidney sections from these genetically modified mice revealed that RhoA and AQP2 accumulate at the apical surface of the collecting duct. Consequently, these animals are unable to appropriately dilute urine in response to overhydration. We propose that membrane-proximal signaling complexes constrained by AKAP220 impact the actin barrier dynamics and AQP2 trafficking to ensure water homeostasis. PMID:27402760

  3. Competition for actin between two distinct F-actin networks defines a bistable switch for cell polarization.

    PubMed

    Lomakin, Alexis J; Lee, Kun-Chun; Han, Sangyoon J; Bui, Duyen A; Davidson, Michael; Mogilner, Alex; Danuser, Gaudenz

    2015-11-01

    Symmetry-breaking polarization enables functional plasticity of cells and tissues and is yet not well understood. Here we show that epithelial cells, hard-wired to maintain a static morphology and to preserve tissue organization, can spontaneously switch to a migratory polarized phenotype after relaxation of the actomyosin cytoskeleton. We find that myosin II engages actin in the formation of cortical actomyosin bundles and thus makes it unavailable for deployment in the process of dendritic growth normally driving cell motility. Under low-contractility regimes, epithelial cells polarize in a front-back manner owing to the emergence of actin retrograde flows powered by dendritic polymerization of actin. Coupled to cell movement, the flows transport myosin II from the front to the back of the cell, where the motor locally 'locks' actin in contractile bundles. This polarization mechanism could be employed by embryonic and cancer epithelial cells in microenvironments where high-contractility-driven cell motion is inefficient.

  4. Actin-myosin network influences morphological response of neuronal cells to altered osmolarity.

    PubMed

    Bober, Brian G; Love, James M; Horton, Steven M; Sitnova, Mariya; Shahamatdar, Sina; Kannan, Ajay; Shah, Sameer B

    2015-04-01

    Acute osmotic fluctuations in the brain occur during a number of clinical conditions and can result in a variety of adverse neurological symptoms. Osmotic perturbation can cause changes in the volumes of intra- and extracellular fluid and, due to the rigidity of the skull, can alter intracranial pressure thus making it difficult to analyze purely osmotic effects in vivo. The present study aims to determine the effects of changes in osmolarity on SH-SY5Y human neuroblastoma cells in vitro, and the role of the actin-myosin network in regulating this response. Cells were exposed to hyper- or hypoosmotic media and morphological and cytoskeletal responses were recorded. Hyperosmotic shock resulted in a drop in cell body volume and planar area, a persisting shape deformation, and increases in cellular translocation. Hypoosmotic shock did not significantly alter planar area, but caused a transient increase in cell body volume and an increase in cellular translocation via the development of small protrusions rich in actin. Disruption of the actin-myosin network with latrunculin and blebbistatin resulted in changes to volume and shape regulation, and a decrease in cellular translocation. In both osmotic perturbations, no apparent disruptions to cytoskeletal integrity were observed by light microscopy. Overall, because osmotically induced changes persisted even after volume regulation occurred, it is possible that osmotic stress may play a larger role in neurological dysfunction than currently believed.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  6. Self-organized gels in DNA/F-actin mixtures without crosslinkers: networks of induced nematic domains with tunable density.

    PubMed

    Lai, Ghee Hwee; Butler, John C; Zribi, Olena V; Smalyukh, Ivan I; Angelini, Thomas E; Purdy, Kirstin R; Golestanian, Ramin; Wong, Gerard C L

    2008-11-21

    We examine mixtures of DNA and filamentous actin (F-actin) as a model system of like-charged rigid rods and flexible chains. Confocal microscopy reveals the formation of elongated nematic F-actin domains reticulated via defect-free vertices into a network embedded in a mesh of random DNA. Synchrotron x-ray scattering results indicate that the DNA mesh squeezes the F-actin domains into a nematic state with an interactin spacing that decreases with increasing DNA concentration as d(actin) proportional, variantrho(DNA)(-1/2). Interestingly, the system changes from a counterion-controlled regime to a depletion-controlled regime with added salt, with drastic consequences for the osmotic pressure induced phase behavior.

  7. Two Distinct Actin Networks Mediate Traction Oscillations to Confer Focal Adhesion Mechanosensing.

    PubMed

    Wu, Zhanghan; Plotnikov, Sergey V; Moalim, Abdiwahab Y; Waterman, Clare M; Liu, Jian

    2017-02-28

    Focal adhesions (FAs) are integrin-based transmembrane assemblies that connect a cell to its extracellular matrix (ECM). They are mechanosensors through which cells exert actin cytoskeleton-mediated traction forces to sense the ECM stiffness. Interestingly, FAs themselves are dynamic structures that adapt their growth in response to mechanical force. It is unclear how the cell manages the plasticity of the FA structure and the associated traction force to accurately sense ECM stiffness. Strikingly, FA traction forces oscillate in time and space, and govern the cell mechanosensing of ECM stiffness. However, precisely how and why the FA traction oscillates is unknown. We developed a model of FA growth that integrates the contributions of the branched actin network and stress fibers (SFs). Using the model in combination with experimental tests, we show that the retrograde flux of the branched actin network promotes the proximal growth of the FA and contributes to a traction peak near the FA's distal tip. The resulting traction gradient within the growing FA favors SF formation near the FA's proximal end. The SF-mediated actomyosin contractility further stabilizes the FA and generates a second traction peak near the center of the FA. Formin-mediated SF elongation negatively feeds back with actomyosin contractility, resulting in central traction peak oscillation. This underpins the observed FA traction oscillation and, importantly, broadens the ECM stiffness range over which FAs can accurately adapt to traction force generation. Actin cytoskeleton-mediated FA growth and maturation thus culminate with FA traction oscillation to drive efficient FA mechanosensing.

  8. Membrane Tension Acts Through PLD2 and mTORC2 to Limit Actin Network Assembly During Neutrophil Migration

    PubMed Central

    Diz-Muñoz, Alba; Thurley, Kevin; Chintamen, Sana; Altschuler, Steven J.; Fletcher, Daniel A.; Weiner, Orion D.

    2016-01-01

    For efficient polarity and migration, cells need to regulate the magnitude and spatial distribution of actin assembly. This process is coordinated by reciprocal interactions between the actin cytoskeleton and mechanical forces. Actin polymerization-based protrusion increases tension in the plasma membrane, which in turn acts as a long-range inhibitor of actin assembly. These interactions form a negative feedback circuit that limits the magnitude of membrane tension in neutrophils and prevents expansion of the existing front and the formation of secondary fronts. It has been suggested that the plasma membrane directly inhibits actin assembly by serving as a physical barrier that opposes protrusion. Here we show that efficient control of actin polymerization-based protrusion requires an additional mechanosensory feedback cascade that indirectly links membrane tension with actin assembly. Specifically, elevated membrane tension acts through phospholipase D2 (PLD2) and the mammalian target of rapamycin complex 2 (mTORC2) to limit actin nucleation. In the absence of this pathway, neutrophils exhibit larger leading edges, higher membrane tension, and profoundly defective chemotaxis. Mathematical modeling suggests roles for both the direct (mechanical) and indirect (biochemical via PLD2 and mTORC2) feedback loops in organizing cell polarity and motility—the indirect loop is better suited to enable competition between fronts, whereas the direct loop helps spatially organize actin nucleation for efficient leading edge formation and cell movement. This circuit is essential for polarity, motility, and the control of membrane tension. PMID:27280401

  9. Microstructural model for cyclic hardening in F-actin networks crosslinked by α-actinin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    López-Menéndez, Horacio; Rodríguez, José Félix

    2016-06-01

    The rheology of F-actin networks has attracted a great attention during the last years. In order to gain a complete understanding of the rheological properties of these novel materials, it is necessary the study in a large deformations regime to alter their internal structure. In this sense, Schmoller et al. (2010) showed that the reconstituted networks of F-actin crosslinked with α-actinin unexpectedly harden when they are subjected to a cyclical shear. This observation contradicts the expected Mullins effect observed in most soft materials, such as rubber and living tissues, where a pronounced softening is observed when they are cyclically deformed. We think that the key to understand this stunning effect is the gelation process. To define it, the most relevant constituents are the chemical crosslinks - α-actinin -, the physical crosslinks - introduced by the entanglement of the semiflexible network - and the interaction between them. As a consequence of this interaction, a pre-stressed network emerges and introduces a feedback effect, where the pre-stress also regulates the adhesion energy of the α-actinin, setting the structure in a metastable reference configuration. Therefore, the external loads and the evolvement of the trapped stress drive the microstructural changes during the cyclic loading protocol. In this work, we propose a micromechanical model into the framework of nonlinear continuum mechanics. The mechanics of the F-actin filaments is modelled using the wormlike chain model for semiflexible filaments and the gelation process is modelled as mesoscale dynamics for the α-actinin and physical crosslink. The model has been validated with reported experimental results.

  10. F-actin cross-linking enhances the stability of force generation in disordered actomyosin networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jung, Wonyeong; Murrell, Michael P.; Kim, Taeyoon

    2015-12-01

    Myosin molecular motors and actin cross-linking proteins (ACPs) are known to mediate the generation and transmission of mechanical forces within the cortical F-actin cytoskeleton that drive major cellular processes such as cell division and migration. However, how motors and ACPs interact collectively over diverse timescales to modulate the time-dependent mechanical properties of the cytoskeleton remains unclear. In this study, we present a three-dimensional agent-based computational model of the cortical actomyosin network to quantitatively determine the effects of motor activity and the density and kinetics of ACPs on the accumulation and maintenance of mechanical tension within a disordered actomyosin network. We found that motors accumulate large stress quickly by behaving as temporary cross-linkers although this stress is relaxed over time unless there are sufficient passive ACPs to stabilize the network. Stabilization by ACPs helps motors to generate forces up to their maximum potential, leading to significant enhancement of the efficiency and stability of stress generation. Thus, we demonstrated that the force-dependent kinetics of ACP dissociation plays a critical role for the accumulation and sustainment of stress and the structural remodeling of networks.

  11. Cytoskeletal actin networks in motile cells are critically self-organized systems synchronized by mechanical interactions.

    PubMed

    Cardamone, Luca; Laio, Alessandro; Torre, Vincent; Shahapure, Rajesh; DeSimone, Antonio

    2011-08-23

    Growing networks of actin fibers are able to organize into compact, stiff two-dimensional structures inside lamellipodia of crawling cells. We put forward the hypothesis that the growing actin network is a critically self-organized system, in which long-range mechanical stresses arising from the interaction with the plasma membrane provide the selective pressure leading to organization. We show that a simple model based only on this principle reproduces the stochastic nature of lamellipodia protrusion (growth periods alternating with fast retractions) and several of the features observed in experiments: a growth velocity initially insensitive to the external force; the capability of the network to organize its orientation; a load-history-dependent growth velocity. Our model predicts that the spectrum of the time series of the height of a growing lamellipodium decays with the inverse of the frequency. This behavior is a well-known signature of self-organized criticality and is confirmed by unique optical tweezer measurements performed in vivo on neuronal growth cones.

  12. Modeling actin waves in dictyostelium cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wasnik, Vaibhav; Mukhopadhyay, Ranjan

    2011-03-01

    Actin networks in living cells demonstrate a high capacity for self-organization and are responsible for the formation of a variety of structures such as lamellopodia, phagocytic cups, and cleavage furrows. Recent experiments have studied actin waves formed on the surface of dictyostelium cells that have been treated with a depolymerizing agent. These waves are believed to be physiologically important, for example, for the formation of phagocytic cups. We propose and study a minimal model, based on the dendritic nucleation of actin polymers, to explain the formation of these waves. This model can be extended to study the dynamics of the coupled actin-membrane system.

  13. STAR syndrome-associated CDK10/Cyclin M regulates actin network architecture and ciliogenesis.

    PubMed

    Guen, Vincent J; Gamble, Carly; Perez, Dahlia E; Bourassa, Sylvie; Zappel, Hildegard; Gärtner, Jutta; Lees, Jacqueline A; Colas, Pierre

    2016-01-01

    CDK10/CycM is a protein kinase deficient in STAR (toe Syndactyly, Telecanthus and Anogenital and Renal malformations) syndrome, which results from mutations in the X-linked FAM58A gene encoding Cyclin M. The biological functions of CDK10/CycM and etiology of STAR syndrome are poorly understood. Here, we report that deficiency of CDK10/Cyclin M promotes assembly and elongation of primary cilia. We establish that this reflects a key role for CDK10/Cyclin M in regulation of actin network organization, which is known to govern ciliogenesis. In an unbiased screen, we identified the RhoA-associated kinase PKN2 as a CDK10/CycM phosphorylation substrate. We establish that PKN2 is a bone fide regulator of ciliogenesis, acting in a similar manner to CDK10/CycM. We discovered that CDK10/Cyclin M binds and phosphorylates PKN2 on threonines 121 and 124, within PKN2's core RhoA-binding domain. Furthermore, we demonstrate that deficiencies in CDK10/CycM or PKN2, or expression of a non-phosphorylatable version of PKN2, destabilize both the RhoA protein and the actin network architecture. Importantly, we established that ectopic expression of RhoA is sufficient to override the induction of ciliogenesis resulting from CDK10/CycM knockdown, indicating that RhoA regulation is critical for CDK10/CycM's negative effect on ciliogenesis. Finally, we show that kidney sections from a STAR patient display dilated renal tubules and abnormal, elongated cilia. Altogether, these results reveal CDK10/CycM as a key regulator of actin dynamics and a suppressor of ciliogenesis through phosphorylation of PKN2 and promotion of RhoA signaling. Moreover, they suggest that STAR syndrome is a ciliopathy.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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. Elastic coupling of nascent apCAM adhesions to flowing actin networks.

    PubMed

    Mejean, Cecile O; Schaefer, Andrew W; Buck, Kenneth B; Kress, Holger; Shundrovsky, Alla; Merrill, Jason W; Dufresne, Eric R; Forscher, Paul

    2013-01-01

    Adhesions are multi-molecular complexes that transmit forces generated by a cell's acto-myosin networks to external substrates. While the physical properties of some of the individual components of adhesions have been carefully characterized, the mechanics of the coupling between the cytoskeleton and the adhesion site as a whole are just beginning to be revealed. We characterized the mechanics of nascent adhesions mediated by the immunoglobulin-family cell adhesion molecule apCAM, which is known to interact with actin filaments. Using simultaneous visualization of actin flow and quantification of forces transmitted to apCAM-coated beads restrained with an optical trap, we found that adhesions are dynamic structures capable of transmitting a wide range of forces. For forces in the picoNewton scale, the nascent adhesions' mechanical properties are dominated by an elastic structure which can be reversibly deformed by up to 1 µm. Large reversible deformations rule out an interface between substrate and cytoskeleton that is dominated by a number of stiff molecular springs in parallel, and favor a compliant cross-linked network. Such a compliant structure may increase the lifetime of a nascent adhesion, facilitating signaling and reinforcement.

  16. Self-Organized Gels in DNA/F-Actin Mixtures without Crosslinkers: Networks of Induced Nematic Domains with Tunable Density

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lai, Ghee Hwee; Butler, John C.; Zribi, Olena V.; Smalyukh, Ivan I.; Angelini, Thomas E.; Purdy, Kirstin R.; Golestanian, Ramin; Wong, Gerard C. L.

    2008-11-01

    We examine mixtures of DNA and filamentous actin (F-actin) as a model system of like-charged rigid rods and flexible chains. Confocal microscopy reveals the formation of elongated nematic F-actin domains reticulated via defect-free vertices into a network embedded in a mesh of random DNA. Synchrotron x-ray scattering results indicate that the DNA mesh squeezes the F-actin domains into a nematic state with an interactin spacing that decreases with increasing DNA concentration as dactin∝ρDNA-1/2. Interestingly, the system changes from a counterion-controlled regime to a depletion-controlled regime with added salt, with drastic consequences for the osmotic pressure induced phase behavior.

  17. Direct observation of dendritic actin filament networks nucleated by Arp2/3 complex and WASP/Scar proteins.

    PubMed

    Blanchoin, L; Amann, K J; Higgs, H N; Marchand, J B; Kaiser, D A; Pollard, T D

    2000-04-27

    Most nucleated cells crawl about by extending a pseudopod that is driven by the polymerization of actin filaments in the cytoplasm behind the leading edge of the plasma membrane. These actin filaments are linked into a network by Y-branches, with the pointed end of each filament attached to the side of another filament and the rapidly growing barbed end facing forward. Because Arp2/3 complex nucleates actin polymerization and links the pointed end to the side of another filament in vitro, a dendritic nucleation model has been proposed in which Arp2/3 complex initiates filaments from the sides of older filaments. Here we report, by using a light microscopy assay, many new features of the mechanism. Branching occurs during, rather than after, nucleation by Arp2/3 complex activated by the Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein (WASP) or Scar protein; capping protein and profilin act synergistically with Arp2/3 complex to favour branched nucleation; phosphate release from aged actin filaments favours dissociation of Arp2/3 complex from the pointed ends of filaments; and branches created by Arp2/3 complex are relatively rigid. These properties result in the automatic assembly of the branched actin network after activation by proteins of the WASP/Scar family and favour the selective disassembly of proximal regions of the network.

  18. Convergence and extension at gastrulation require a myosin IIB dependent cortical actin network

    PubMed Central

    Skoglund, Paul; Rolo, Ana; Chen, Xuejun; Gumbiner, Barry M.; Keller, Ray

    2009-01-01

    Summary Force-producing convergence (narrowing) and extension (lengthening) of tissues by active intercalation of cells along the axis of convergence play a major role in axial morphogenesis during development of both vertebrate and invertebrate embryos, and failure of these processes in human embryos leads to embryonic defects including spina bifida and anencephaly. Here we use Xenopus laevis, a system in which the polarized cell motility that drives this active cell intercalation has been related to development of forces that close the blastopore and elongate the body axis, to examine the role of myosin IIB in convergence and extension. We find that myosin IIB is localized in the cortex of intercalating cells, and that morpholino knockdown of this myosin isoform shows that it is essential for maintenance of a stereotypical, cortical actin cytoskeleton that we visualize with time-lapse fluorescent confocal microscopy. We show that this actin network consists of foci or nodes connected by cables and is polarized relative to the embryonic axis, preferentially cyclically shortening and lengthening parallel to the axis of cell polarization, elongation, and intercalation, and also parallel to the axis of convergence forces during gastrulation. MHC-B-depletion results in disruption of this polarized cytoskeleton, loss of the polarized protrusive activity characteristic of intercalating cells, eventual loss of cell-cell and cell matrix adhesion, and dose-dependent failure of blastopore closure, arguably because of failure to develop convergence forces parallel to the myosin IIB-dependent dynamics of the actin cytoskeleton. These findings bridge the gap between a molecular-scale motor protein and tissue-scale embryonic morphogenesis. PMID:18550716

  19. Temperature-induced sol-gel transition and microgel formation in α-actinin cross-linked actin networks: A rheological study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tempel, M.; Isenberg, G.; Sackmann, E.

    1996-08-01

    We have studied the sol-gel transition, the viscoelastic and the structural properties of networks constituted of semiflexible actin filaments cross-linked by α-actinin. Cross-linking was regulated in a reversible way by varying the temperature through the association-dissociation equilibrium of the actin-α-actinin system. Viscoelastic parameters [shear storage modulus G'(ω), phase shift tan(Φ)(ω), creep compliance J(t)] were measured as a function of temperature and actin-to-cross-linker ratio by a magnetically driven rotating disc rheometer. G'(ω) and tan(Φ)(ω) were studied at a frequency ω corresponding to the elastic plateau regime of the G'(ω) versus ω spectrum of the purely entangled solution. The microstructure of the networks was viewed by negative staining electron microscopy (EM). The phase shift tan(Φ) (or equivalently the viscosity η) diverges and reaches a maximum when approaching the apparent gel point from lower and higher temperatures, and the maximum defines the gel point (temperature Tg). The elastic plateau modulus G'N diverges at temperatures beyond this gel point TTg. The cross-linking transition (corresponding to a sol-gel transition at zero frequency) is interpreted in terms of a percolation model and the divergence of G'N at Tform G'N~[p(T)-pc]γ where p(T) is the temperature dependent fraction of crosslinks formed. A power of γ=1.5-1.8 is found. Negative staining EM shows (1) that the gel is essentially homogeneous above the cross-linking transition (T>Tg), (2) that microscopic segregation takes place at T<=Tg leading to local formation of clusters (a state termed microgel), and (3) that at low actin-α-actinin ratios (rAα<=10) and low temperatures (T<=10 °C) macroscopic segregation into bundles of cross-linked actin filaments and a diluted solution of actin filaments is observed. The three regimes of network structure are represented by an

  20. The actin cytoskeleton in myofibroblast differentiation: Ultrastructure defining form and driving function

    PubMed Central

    Sandbo, Nathan; Dulin, Nickolai

    2011-01-01

    Myofibroblasts are modified fibroblasts, characterized by the presence of a well-developed contractile apparatus, and the formation of robust actin stress fibers. These mechanically active cells are thought to orchestrate extracellular matrix remodeling during normal wound healing in response to tissue injury, and in aberrant tissue remodeling found in fibrosing disorders. This review surveys the understanding of the role of actin stress fibers in myofibroblast biology. From its original description as a defining ultrastructural and morphologic feature, to well-accepted observations demonstrating its participation in contraction, focal adhesion maturation, and extracellular matrix reorganization, and finally to more recent observations demonstrating its role in transducing mechanical force into biochemical signals, transcriptional control of genes involved in locomotion, contraction, and matrix reorganization, and the localized regulation of mRNA translation. This breadth of functionality of the actin stress fiber serves to reinforce and amplify its mechanical function, via induced expression of proteins that themselves augment contraction, focal adhesion formation, and matrix remodeling. In composite, the functions of the actin cytoskeleton are most often aligned, allowing for the integration and amplification of signals promoting both myofibroblast differentiation and matrix remodeling during fibrogenesis. PMID:21925115

  1. Dendritic Actin Nucleation Causes Traveling Waves and Patches

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carlsson, Anders

    2010-03-01

    Reversible polymerization of the intracellular protein actin into semiflexible filaments is crucial for cell motion and environmental sensing. Recent studies have shown that polymerized actin can spontaneously form traveling waves and/or moving patches. I investigate possible mechanisms for such phenomena by numerically simulating the ``dendritic nucleation'' model of actin network growth. The simulations treat the growth of an actin network on a flat portion of a cell membrane, using a stochastic-growth method which calculates an explicit three-dimensional network structure. The calculations treat processes including filament growth, capping, branching, severing, and Brownian motion. The dynamics of membrane proteins stimulating actin polymerization are also included: they diffuse in the membrane, and detach/deactivate in the presence of polymerized actin. The simulations show three types of polymerized-actin behavior: 1) traveling waves, 2) coherently moving patches, and 3) random fluctuations with occasional moving patches. Wave formation is favored at low free-actin concentrations by a long reattachment time for the membrane proteins, and by weakness of the attractive interaction between filaments and the membrane. Raising the free-actin concentration results in a randomly varying distribution of polymerized actin. Lowering the free-actin concentration below the optimal value for waves causes the waves to break up into patches which, however, move coherently. Effects of similar magnitude are predicted when other intracellular protein concentrations are varied. Diffusion of the membrane proteins slows the waves, and, if fast enough, stops them completely, resulting in the formation of a static spot.

  2. Green Supplier Network Manufacturer Commitment Form

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Online form expressing interest in committing to be a Green Supplier; this form expresses your intent to participate in a confidential Green Suppliers Network assessment, implement recommended environmental improvements and complete a NIST MEP follow-up.

  3. Actin polymerization machinery: the finish line of signaling networks, the starting point of cellular movement.

    PubMed

    Disanza, A; Steffen, A; Hertzog, M; Frittoli, E; Rottner, K; Scita, G

    2005-05-01

    Dynamic assembly of actin filaments generates the forces supporting cell motility. Several recent biochemical and genetic studies have revealed a plethora of different actin binding proteins whose coordinated activity regulates the turnover of actin filaments, thus controlling a variety of actin-based processes, including cell migration. Additionally, emerging evidence is highlighting a scenario whereby the same basic set of actin regulatory proteins is also the convergent node of different signaling pathways emanating from extracellular stimuli, like those from receptor tyrosine kinases. Here, we will focus on the molecular mechanisms of how the machinery of actin polymerization functions and is regulated, in a signaling-dependent mode, to generate site-directed actin assembly leading to cell motility.

  4. Ponticulin is the major high affinity link between the plasma membrane and the cortical actin network in Dictyostelium

    PubMed Central

    1994-01-01

    Interactions between the plasma membrane and underlying actin-based cortex have been implicated in membrane organization and stability, the control of cell shape, and various motile processes. To ascertain the function of high affinity actin-membrane associations, we have disrupted by homologous recombination the gene encoding ponticulin, the major high affinity actin-membrane link in Dictyostelium discoideum amoebae. Cells lacking detectable amounts of ponticulin message and protein also are deficient in high affinity actin-membrane binding by several criteria. First, only 10-13% as much endogenous actin cosediments through sucrose and crude plasma membranes from ponticulin- minus cells, as compared with membranes from the parental strain. Second, purified plasma membranes exhibit little or no binding or nucleation of exogenous actin in vitro. Finally, only 10-30% as much endogenous actin partitions with plasma membranes from ponticulin-minus cells after these cells are mechanically unroofed with polylysine- coated coverslips. The loss of the cell's major actin-binding membrane protein appears to be surprisingly benign under laboratory conditions. Ponticulin-minus cells grow normally in axenic culture and pinocytose FITC-dextran at the same rate as do parental cells. The rate of phagocytosis of particles by ponticulin-minus cells in growth media also is unaffected. By contrast, after initiation of development, cells lacking ponticulin aggregate faster than the parental cells. Subsequent morphogenesis proceeds asynchronously, but viable spores can form. These results indicate that ponticulin is not required for cellular translocation, but apparently plays a role in cell patterning during development. PMID:8089176

  5. F-actin waves, actin cortex disassembly and focal exocytosis driven by actin-phosphoinositide positive feedback.

    PubMed

    Masters, Thomas A; Sheetz, Michael P; Gauthier, Nils C

    2016-04-01

    Actin polymerization is controlled by the phosphoinositide composition of the plasma membrane. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying the spatiotemporal regulation of actin network organization over extended length scales are still unclear. To observe phosphoinositide-dependent cytoskeletal dynamics we combined the model system of frustrated phagocytosis, total internal reflection microscopy and manipulation of the buffer tonicity. We found that macrophages interacting with IgG-coated glass substrates formed circular F-actin waves on their ventral surface enclosing a region of plasma membrane devoid of cortical actin. Plasma membrane free of actin cortex was strongly depleted of PI(4,5)P2 , but enriched in PI(3,4)P2 and displayed a fivefold increase in exocytosis. Wave formation could be promoted by application of a hypotonic shock. The actin waves were characteristic of a bistable wavefront at the boundary between the regions of membrane containing and lacking cortical actin. Phosphoinositide modifiers and RhoGTPase activities dramatically redistributed with respect to the wavefronts, which often exhibited spatial oscillations. Perturbation of either lipid or actin cytoskeleton-related pathways led to rapid loss of both the polarized lipid distribution and the wavefront. As waves travelled over the plasma membrane, wavefront actin was seen to rapidly polymerize and depolymerize at pre-existing clusters of FcγRIIA, coincident with rapid changes in lipid composition. Thus the potential of receptors to support rapid F-actin polymerization appears to depend acutely on the local concentrations of multiple lipid species. We propose that interdependence through positive feedback from the cytoskeleton to lipid modifiers leads to coordinated local cortex remodeling, focal exocytosis, and organizes extended actin networks.

  6. A Gβγ effector, ElmoE, transduces GPCR signaling to the actin network during chemotaxis.

    PubMed

    Yan, Jianshe; Mihaylov, Vassil; Xu, Xuehua; Brzostowski, Joseph A; Li, Hongyan; Liu, Lunhua; Veenstra, Timothy D; Parent, Carole A; Jin, Tian

    2012-01-17

    Activation of G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) leads to the dissociation of heterotrimeric G-proteins into Gα and Gβγ subunits, which go on to regulate various effectors involved in a panoply of cellular responses. During chemotaxis, Gβγ subunits regulate actin assembly and migration, but the protein(s) linking Gβγ to the actin cytoskeleton remains unknown. Here, we identified a Gβγ effector, ElmoE in Dictyostelium, and demonstrated that it is required for GPCR-mediated chemotaxis. Remarkably, ElmoE associates with Gβγ and Dock-like proteins to activate the small GTPase Rac, in a GPCR-dependent manner, and also associates with Arp2/3 complex and F-actin. Thus, ElmoE serves as a link between chemoattractant GPCRs, G-proteins and the actin cytoskeleton. The pathway, consisting of GPCR, Gβγ, Elmo/Dock, Rac, and Arp2/3, spatially guides the growth of dendritic actin networks in pseudopods of eukaryotic cells during chemotaxis.

  7. Nuclei migrate through constricted spaces using microtubule motors and actin networks in C. elegans hypodermal cells.

    PubMed

    Bone, Courtney R; Chang, Yu-Tai; Cain, Natalie E; Murphy, Shaun P; Starr, Daniel A

    2016-11-15

    Cellular migrations through constricted spaces are a crucial aspect of many developmental and disease processes including hematopoiesis, inflammation and metastasis. A limiting factor in these events is nuclear deformation. Here, we establish an in vivo model in which nuclei can be visualized while moving through constrictions and use it to elucidate mechanisms for nuclear migration. C. elegans hypodermal P-cell larval nuclei traverse a narrow space that is about 5% their width. This constriction is blocked by fibrous organelles, structures that pass through P cells to connect the muscles to cuticle. Fibrous organelles are removed just prior to nuclear migration, when nuclei and lamins undergo extreme morphological changes to squeeze through the space. Both actin and microtubule networks are organized to mediate nuclear migration. The LINC complex, consisting of the SUN protein UNC-84 and the KASH protein UNC-83, recruits dynein and kinesin-1 to the nuclear surface. Both motors function in P-cell nuclear migration, but dynein, functioning through UNC-83, plays a more central role as nuclei migrate towards minus ends of polarized microtubule networks. Thus, the nucleoskeleton and cytoskeleton are coordinated to move nuclei through constricted spaces.

  8. Directed actin assembly and motility.

    PubMed

    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.

  9. What we talk about when we talk about nuclear actin

    PubMed Central

    Belin, Brittany J; Mullins, R Dyche

    2013-01-01

    In the cytoplasm, actin filaments form crosslinked networks that enable eukaryotic cells to transport cargo, change shape, and move. Actin is also present in the nucleus but, in this compartment, its functions are more cryptic and controversial. If we distill the substantial literature on nuclear actin down to its essentials, we find four, recurring, and more-or-less independent, claims: (1) crosslinked networks of conventional actin filaments span the nucleus and help maintain its structure and organize its contents; (2) assembly or contraction of filaments regulates specific nuclear events; (3) actin monomers moonlight as subunits of chromatin remodeling complexes, independent of their ability to form filaments; and (4) modified actin monomers or oligomers, structurally distinct from canonical, cytoskeletal filaments, mediate nuclear events by unknown mechanisms. We discuss the evidence underlying these claims and as well as their strengths and weaknesses. Next, we describe our recent work, in which we built probes specific for nuclear actin and used them to describe the form and distribution of actin in somatic cell nuclei. Finally, we discuss how different forms of nuclear actin may play different roles in different cell types and physiological contexts. PMID:23934079

  10. Networks Models of Actin Dynamics during Spermatozoa Postejaculatory Life: A Comparison among Human-Made and Text Mining-Based Models

    PubMed Central

    Ordinelli, Alessandra; Ramal Sanchez, Marina; Mattioli, Mauro; Barboni, Barbara

    2016-01-01

    Here we realized a networks-based model representing the process of actin remodelling that occurs during the acquisition of fertilizing ability of human spermatozoa (HumanMade_ActinSpermNetwork, HM_ASN). Then, we compared it with the networks provided by two different text mining tools: Agilent Literature Search (ALS) and PESCADOR. As a reference, we used the data from the online repository Kyoto Encyclopaedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG), referred to the actin dynamics in a more general biological context. We found that HM_ALS and the networks from KEGG data shared the same scale-free topology following the Barabasi-Albert model, thus suggesting that the information is spread within the network quickly and efficiently. On the contrary, the networks obtained by ALS and PESCADOR have a scale-free hierarchical architecture, which implies a different pattern of information transmission. Also, the hubs identified within the networks are different: HM_ALS and KEGG networks contain as hubs several molecules known to be involved in actin signalling; ALS was unable to find other hubs than “actin,” whereas PESCADOR gave some nonspecific result. This seems to suggest that the human-made information retrieval in the case of a specific event, such as actin dynamics in human spermatozoa, could be a reliable strategy. PMID:27642606

  11. Green Suppliers Network Supply Chain Commitment Form

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Online form to show your company desires to be a Green Suppliers Network supply chain. Expresses an intent to: commit to engage at least five suppliers to complete an assessment process within a 12-month period and more.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Xinxin

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

  13. Reversible mechano-memory in sheared cross-linked actin networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Majumdar, Sayantan; Gardel, Margaret L.

    2015-03-01

    Is it possible to control the shear modulus of a material mechanically? We reconstitute a network of actin filaments cross-linked with Filamin A and show that the system has remarkable property to respond under shear in a deformation history dependent manner. When a large shear stress pulse is applied to the system, the system remembers the direction of deformation long after the stress pulse is removed. For the next loading cycle, shear response of the system becomes anisotropic; if the applied pulse direction is same as the previous one, the system behaves like a viscoelastic solid but a transient liquefaction is observed if the pulse direction is reversed. Imaging and normal force measurements under shear suggest that this anisotropic response comes from stretching and bending dominated deformation directions induced by the large shear deformation giving rise to a direction dependent mechano-memory. The long time scale over which the memory effect persists has relevance in various deformations in cellular and multicellular systems. S.M. acknowledges support from a Kadanoff-Rice Post Doctoral fellowship from MRSEC, University of Chicago.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  15. Demonstration of prominent actin filaments in the root columella

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Collings, D. A.; Zsuppan, G.; Allen, N. S.; Blancaflor, E. B.; Brown, C. S. (Principal Investigator)

    2001-01-01

    The distribution of actin filaments within the gravity-sensing columella cells of plant roots remains poorly understood, with studies over numerous years providing inconsistent descriptions of actin organization in these cells. This uncertainty in actin organization, and thus in actin's role in graviperception and gravisignaling, has led us to investigate actin arrangements in the columella cells of Zea mays L., Medicago truncatula Gaertn., Linum usitatissiilium L. and Nicotianla benthamiana Domin. Actin organization was examined using a combination of optimized immunofluorescence techniques, and an improved fluorochrome-conjugated phalloidin labeling method reliant on 3-maleimidobenzoyl-N-hydroxy-succinimide ester (MBS) cross-linking combined with glycerol permeabilization. Confocal microscopy of root sections labeled with anti-actin antibodies revealed patterns suggestive of actin throughout the columella region. These patterns included short and fragmented actin bundles, fluorescent rings around amyloplasts and intense fluorescence originating from the nucleus. Additionally, confocal microscopy of MBS-stabilized and Alexa Fluor-phalloidin-labeled root sections revealed a previously undetected state of actin organization in the columella. Discrete actin structures surrounded the amyloplasts and prominent actin cables radiated from the nuclear surface toward the cell periphery. Furthermore, the cortex of the columella cells contained fine actin bundles (or single filaments) that had a predominant transverse orientation. We also used confocal microscopy of plant roots expressing endoplasmic reticulum (ER)-targeted green fluorescent protein to demonstrate rapid ER movements within the columella cells, suggesting that the imaged actin network is functional. The successful identification of discrete actin structures in the root columella cells forms the perception and signaling.

  16. The Cauliflower Mosaic Virus Protein P6 Forms Motile Inclusions That Traffic along Actin Microfilaments and Stabilize Microtubules1[W][OA

    PubMed Central

    Harries, Phillip A.; Palanichelvam, Karuppaiah; Yu, Weichang; Schoelz, James E.; Nelson, Richard S.

    2009-01-01

    The gene VI product (P6) of Cauliflower mosaic virus (CaMV) is a multifunctional protein known to be a major component of cytoplasmic inclusion bodies formed during CaMV infection. Although these inclusions are known to contain virions and are thought to be sites of translation from the CaMV 35S polycistronic RNA intermediate, the precise role of these bodies in the CaMV infection cycle remains unclear. Here, we examine the functionality and intracellular location of a fusion between P6 and GFP (P6-GFP). We initially show that the ability of P6-GFP to transactivate translation is comparable to unmodified P6. Consequently, our work has direct application for the large body of literature in which P6 has been expressed ectopically and its functions characterized. We subsequently found that P6-GFP forms highly motile cytoplasmic inclusion bodies and revealed through fluorescence colocalization studies that these P6-GFP bodies associate with the actin/endoplasmic reticulum network as well as microtubules. We demonstrate that while P6-GFP inclusions traffic along microfilaments, those associated with microtubules appear stationary. Additionally, inhibitor studies reveal that the intracellular movement of P6-GFP inclusions is sensitive to the actin inhibitor, latrunculin B, which also inhibits the formation of local lesions by CaMV in Nicotiana edwardsonii leaves. The motility of P6 along microfilaments represents an entirely new property for this protein, and these results imply a role for P6 in intracellular and cell-to-cell movement of CaMV. PMID:19028879

  17. Neural network with formed dynamics of activity

    SciTech Connect

    Dunin-Barkovskii, V.L.; Osovets, N.B.

    1995-03-01

    The problem of developing a neural network with a given pattern of the state sequence is considered. A neural network structure and an algorithm, of forming its bond matrix which lead to an approximate but robust solution of the problem are proposed and discussed. Limiting characteristics of the serviceability of the proposed structure are studied. Various methods of visualizing dynamic processes in a neural network are compared. Possible applications of the results obtained for interpretation of neurophysiological data and in neuroinformatics systems are discussed.

  18. Actin Polymerization is Stimulated by Actin Crosslinking Protein Palladin

    PubMed Central

    Gurung, Ritu; Yadav, Rahul; Brungardt, Joseph G.; Orlova, Albina; Egelman, Edward H.; Beck, Moriah R.

    2016-01-01

    The actin scaffold protein palladin regulates both normal cell migration and invasive cell motility, processes that require the coordinated regulation of actin dynamics. However, the potential effect of palladin on actin dynamics has remained elusive. Here we show that the actin binding immunoglobulin-like domain of palladin, which is directly responsible for both actin binding and bundling, also stimulates actin polymerization in vitro. Palladin eliminated the lag phase that is characteristic of the slow nucleation step of actin polymerization. Furthermore, palladin dramatically reduced depolymerization, slightly enhanced the elongation rate, and did not alter the critical concentration. Microscopy and in vitro crosslinking assays reveal differences in actin bundle architecture when palladin is incubated with actin before or after polymerization. These results suggest a model whereby palladin stimulates a polymerization-competent form of G-actin, akin to metal ions, either through charge neutralization or conformational changes. PMID:26607837

  19. Boolean gates on actin filaments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  20. The Tobacco etch virus P3 protein forms mobile inclusions via the early secretory pathway and traffics along actin microfilaments.

    PubMed

    Cui, Xiaoyan; Wei, Taiyun; Chowda-Reddy, R V; Sun, Guangyu; Wang, Aiming

    2010-02-05

    Plant potyviruses encode two membrane proteins, 6K and P3. The 6K protein has been shown to induce virus replication vesicles. However, the function of P3 remains unclear. In this study, subcellular localization of the Tobacco etch virus (TEV) P3 protein was investigated in Nicotiana benthamiana leaf cells. The TEV P3 protein localized on the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) membrane and formed punctate inclusions in association with the Golgi apparatus. The trafficking of P3 to the Golgi was mediated by the early secretory pathway. The Golgi-associated punctate structures originated from the ER exit site (ERES). Deletion analyses identified P3 domains required for the retention of P3 at the Golgi. Moreover, the P3 punctate structure was found to traffic along the actin filaments and colocalize with the 6K-containing replication vesicles. Taken together, these data support previous suggestions that P3 may play dual roles in virus movement and replication.

  1. Capping protein regulatory cycle driven by CARMIL and V-1 may promote actin network assembly at protruding edges.

    PubMed

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

    2014-05-13

    Although capping protein (CP) terminates actin filament elongation, it promotes Arp2/3-dependent actin network assembly and accelerates actin-based motility both in vitro and in vivo. In vitro, capping protein Arp2/3 myosin I linker (CARMIL) antagonizes CP by reducing its affinity for the barbed end and by uncapping CP-capped filaments, whereas the protein V-1/myotrophin sequesters CP in an inactive complex. Previous work showed that CARMIL can readily retrieve CP from the CP:V-1 complex, thereby converting inactive CP into a version with moderate affinity for the barbed end. Here we further clarify the mechanism of this exchange reaction, and we demonstrate that the CP:CARMIL complex created by complex exchange slows the rate of barbed-end elongation by rapidly associating with, and dissociating from, the barbed end. Importantly, the cellular concentrations of V-1 and CP determined here argue that most CP is sequestered by V-1 at steady state in vivo. Finally, we show that CARMIL is recruited to the plasma membrane and only at cell edges undergoing active protrusion. Assuming that CARMIL is active only at this location, our data argue that a large pool of freely diffusing, inactive CP (CP:V-1) feeds, via CARMIL-driven complex exchange, the formation of weak-capping complexes (CP:CARMIL) at the plasma membrane of protruding edges. In vivo, therefore, CARMIL should promote Arp2/3-dependent actin network assembly at the leading edge by promoting barbed-end capping there.

  2. Capping protein regulatory cycle driven by CARMIL and V-1 may promote actin network assembly at protruding edges

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

    Although capping protein (CP) terminates actin filament elongation, it promotes Arp2/3-dependent actin network assembly and accelerates actin-based motility both in vitro and in vivo. In vitro, capping protein Arp2/3 myosin I linker (CARMIL) antagonizes CP by reducing its affinity for the barbed end and by uncapping CP-capped filaments, whereas the protein V-1/myotrophin sequesters CP in an inactive complex. Previous work showed that CARMIL can readily retrieve CP from the CP:V-1 complex, thereby converting inactive CP into a version with moderate affinity for the barbed end. Here we further clarify the mechanism of this exchange reaction, and we demonstrate that the CP:CARMIL complex created by complex exchange slows the rate of barbed-end elongation by rapidly associating with, and dissociating from, the barbed end. Importantly, the cellular concentrations of V-1 and CP determined here argue that most CP is sequestered by V-1 at steady state in vivo. Finally, we show that CARMIL is recruited to the plasma membrane and only at cell edges undergoing active protrusion. Assuming that CARMIL is active only at this location, our data argue that a large pool of freely diffusing, inactive CP (CP:V-1) feeds, via CARMIL-driven complex exchange, the formation of weak-capping complexes (CP:CARMIL) at the plasma membrane of protruding edges. In vivo, therefore, CARMIL should promote Arp2/3-dependent actin network assembly at the leading edge by promoting barbed-end capping there. PMID:24778263

  3. Amplification of actin polymerization forces

    PubMed Central

    Dmitrieff, Serge; Nédélec, François

    2016-01-01

    The actin cytoskeleton drives many essential processes in vivo, using molecular motors and actin assembly as force generators. We discuss here the propagation of forces caused by actin polymerization, highlighting simple configurations where the force developed by the network can exceed the sum of the polymerization forces from all filaments. PMID:27002174

  4. Amplification of actin polymerization forces.

    PubMed

    Dmitrieff, Serge; Nédélec, François

    2016-03-28

    The actin cytoskeleton drives many essential processes in vivo, using molecular motors and actin assembly as force generators. We discuss here the propagation of forces caused by actin polymerization, highlighting simple configurations where the force developed by the network can exceed the sum of the polymerization forces from all filaments.

  5. Combinatorial genetic analysis of a network of actin disassembly‐promoting factors

    PubMed Central

    Ydenberg, Casey A.; Johnston, Adam; Weinstein, Jaclyn; Bellavance, Danielle; Jansen, Silvia

    2015-01-01

    The patterning of actin cytoskeleton structures in vivo is a product of spatially and temporally regulated polymer assembly balanced by polymer disassembly. While in recent years our understanding of actin assembly mechanisms has grown immensely, our knowledge of actin disassembly machinery and mechanisms has remained comparatively sparse. Saccharomyces cerevisiae is an ideal system to tackle this problem, both because of its amenabilities to genetic manipulation and live‐cell imaging and because only a single gene encodes each of the core disassembly factors: cofilin (COF1), Srv2/CAP (SRV2), Aip1 (AIP1), GMF (GMF1/AIM7), coronin (CRN1), and twinfilin (TWF1). Among these six factors, only the functions of cofilin are essential and have been well defined. Here, we investigated the functions of the nonessential actin disassembly factors by performing genetic and live‐cell imaging analyses on a combinatorial set of isogenic single, double, triple, and quadruple mutants in S. cerevisiae. Our results show that each disassembly factor makes an important contribution to cell viability, actin organization, and endocytosis. Further, our data reveal new relationships among these factors, providing insights into how they work together to orchestrate actin turnover. Finally, we observe specific combinations of mutations that are lethal, e.g., srv2Δ aip1Δ and srv2Δ crn1Δ twf1Δ, demonstrating that while cofilin is essential, it is not sufficient in vivo, and that combinations of the other disassembly factors perform vital functions. © 2015 The Authors. Cytoskeleton Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26147656

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

    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. PMID:27385345

  7. Aluminum modifies the viscosity of filamentous actin solutions as measured by optical displacement microviscometry.

    PubMed

    Arnoys, E J; Schindler, M

    2000-01-01

    A microtechnique has been developed that is capable of measuring the viscosity of filamentous actin (F-actin) solutions. This method, called optical displacement microviscometry (ODM), was utilized to determine the changes in viscosity of solutions of rabbit muscle, human platelet, and maize pollen actin when measured in the absence and presence of aluminum. Measurements demonstrated that the viscosity of the different actin solutions decreased with aluminum concentration. In contrast, increases in viscosity were observed when aluminum was added to F-actin solutions containing filamin (chicken gizzard), a protein that bundles actin filaments. Confocal fluorescence imaging of pure actin solutions in the presence of aluminum showed a disrupted actin network composed of fragmented actin filaments in the form of small aggregates. In contrast, in the presence of filamin, aluminum promoted the formation of thicker actin filaments. These measurements demonstrate that aluminum can affect actin filaments differentially depending on the presence of an actin-binding protein. In addition, a strong correlation is observed between the changes in viscosity as measured by ODM and the thickness and assembled state of bundles of actin filaments.

  8. TGFβ2 Induces the Formation of Cross-Linked Actin Networks (CLANs) in Human Trabecular Meshwork Cells Through the Smad and Non-Smad Dependent Pathways

    PubMed Central

    Montecchi-Palmer, Michela; Bermudez, Jaclyn Y.; Webber, Hannah C.; Patel, Gaurang C.; Clark, Abbot F.; Mao, Weiming

    2017-01-01

    Purpose Increased intraocular pressure results from increased aqueous humor (AH) outflow resistance at the trabecular meshwork (TM) due to pathologic changes including the formation of cross-linked actin networks (CLANs). Transforming growth factor β2 (TGFβ2) is elevated in the AH and TM of primary open angle glaucoma (POAG) patients and induces POAG-associated TM changes, including CLANs. We determined the role of individual TGFβ2 signaling pathways in CLAN formation. Methods Cultured nonglaucomatous human TM (NTM) cells were treated with control or TGFβ2, with or without the inhibitors of TGFβ receptor, Smad3, c-Jun N-terminal kinases (JNK), extracellular signal regulated kinase (ERK), P38, or Rho-associated protein kinase (ROCK). NTM cells were cotreated with TGFβ2 plus inhibitors for 10 days or pretreated with TGFβ2 for 10 days followed by 1-hour inhibitor treatment. NTM cells were immunostained with phalloidin-Alexa-488 and 4′,6-diamidino-2-phenylindole (DAPI). Data were analyzed using 1-way ANOVA and Dunnett's post hoc test. Results TGFβ2 significantly induced CLAN formation (n = 6 to 12, P < 0.05), which was completely inhibited by TGFβ receptor, Smad3, and ERK inhibitors, as well as completely or partially inhibited by JNK, P38, and ROCK inhibitors, depending on cell strains. One-hour exposure to ROCK inhibitor completely resolved formed CLANs (P < 0.05), whereas TGFβ receptor, Smad3 inhibitor, and ERK inhibitors resulted in partial or complete resolution. The JNK and P38 inhibitors showed partial or no resolution. Among these inhibitors, the ROCK inhibitor was the most disruptive to the actin stress fibers, whereas ERK inhibition showed the least disruption. Conclusions TGFβ2-induced CLANs in NTM cells were prevented and resolved using various pathway inhibitors. Apart from CLAN inhibition, some of these inhibitors also had different effects on actin stress fibers. PMID:28241317

  9. MicroFilament Analyzer identifies actin network organizations in epidermal cells of Arabidopsis thaliana roots

    PubMed Central

    Jacques, Eveline; Lewandowski, Michal; Buytaert, Jan; Fierens, Yves; Verbelen, Jean-Pierre; Vissenberg, Kris

    2013-01-01

    The plant cytoskeleton plays a crucial role in the cells’ growth and development during different developmental stages and it undergoes many rearrangements. In order to describe the arrangements of the F-actin cytoskeleton in root epidermal cells of Arabidopsis thaliana, the recently developed software MicroFilament Analyzer (MFA) was exploited. This software enables high-throughput identification and quantification of the orientation of filamentous structures on digital images in a highly standardized and fast way. Using confocal microscopy and transgenic GFP-FABD2-GFP plants the actin cytoskeleton was visualized in the root epidermis. MFA analysis revealed that during the early stages of cell development F-actin is organized in a mainly random pattern. As the cells grow, they preferentially adopt a longitudinal organization, a pattern that is also preserved in the largest cells. In the evolution from young to old cells, an approximately even distribution of transverse, oblique or combined orientations is always present besides the switch from random to a longitudinal oriented actin cytoskeleton. PMID:23656865

  10. Modulation of cargo release from dense core granules by size and actin network.

    PubMed

    Felmy, Felix

    2007-08-01

    During regulated fusion of secretory granules with the plasma membrane, a fusion pore first opens and then dilates. The dilating pore allows cargo proteins from the dense core to be released into the extracellular space. Using real-time evanescent field fluorescence microscopy of live PC12 cells, it was determined how rapidly proteins of different sizes escape from single granules after fusion. Tissue plasminogen activator (tPA)-Venus is released 40-fold slower than the three times smaller neuropeptide Y [NPY-monomeric GFP (mGFP)]. An NPY bearing two mGFPs in tandem [NPY-(mGFP)(2)] as an intermediate-sized fusion probe is released most slowly. Although, the time-course of release varies substantially for a given probe. Coexpression of beta-actin, actin-related protein 3 or mAbp1 slowed the release of the two larger cargo molecules but did not affect release of NPY-mGFP or of the granule-membrane-bound probe Vamp-pHluorin. Additionally, high concentrations of cytochalasin D slowed release of the tPA-Venus. Together these results suggest that fusion pore dilation is not the only determinate of release time-course and that actin rearrangements similar to those mediating actin-mediated motility influences the time-course of release without directly interfering with the granule membrane to cell membrane connection.

  11. Kv3.3 Channels Bind Hax-1 and Arp2/3 to Assemble a Stable Local Actin Network that Regulates Channel Gating.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yalan; Zhang, Xiao-Feng; Fleming, Matthew R; Amiri, Anahita; El-Hassar, Lynda; Surguchev, Alexei A; Hyland, Callen; Jenkins, David P; Desai, Rooma; Brown, Maile R; Gazula, Valeswara-Rao; Waters, Michael F; Large, Charles H; Horvath, Tamas L; Navaratnam, Dhasakumar; Vaccarino, Flora M; Forscher, Paul; Kaczmarek, Leonard K

    2016-04-07

    Mutations in the Kv3.3 potassium channel (KCNC3) cause cerebellar neurodegeneration and impair auditory processing. The cytoplasmic C terminus of Kv3.3 contains a proline-rich domain conserved in proteins that activate actin nucleation through Arp2/3. We found that Kv3.3 recruits Arp2/3 to the plasma membrane, resulting in formation of a relatively stable cortical actin filament network resistant to cytochalasin D that inhibits fast barbed end actin assembly. These Kv3.3-associated actin structures are required to prevent very rapid N-type channel inactivation during short depolarizations of the plasma membrane. The effects of Kv3.3 on the actin cytoskeleton are mediated by the binding of the cytoplasmic C terminus of Kv3.3 to Hax-1, an anti-apoptotic protein that regulates actin nucleation through Arp2/3. A human Kv3.3 mutation within a conserved proline-rich domain produces channels that bind Hax-1 but are impaired in recruiting Arp2/3 to the plasma membrane, resulting in growth cones with deficient actin veils in stem cell-derived neurons.

  12. Actinic keratosis

    MedlinePlus

    Solar keratosis; Sun-induced skin changes - keratosis; Keratosis - actinic (solar); Skin lesion - actinic keratosis ... likely to develop it if you: Have fair skin, blue or green eyes, or blond or red ...

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  14. Spontaneous actin dynamics in contractile rings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

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

  15. Actin Mechanics and Fragmentation*

    PubMed Central

    De La Cruz, Enrique M.; Gardel, Margaret L.

    2015-01-01

    Cell physiological processes require the regulation and coordination of both mechanical and dynamical properties of the actin cytoskeleton. Here we review recent advances in understanding the mechanical properties and stability of actin filaments and how these properties are manifested at larger (network) length scales. We discuss how forces can influence local biochemical interactions, resulting in the formation of mechanically sensitive dynamic steady states. Understanding the regulation of such force-activated chemistries and dynamic steady states reflects an important challenge for future work that will provide valuable insights as to how the actin cytoskeleton engenders mechanoresponsiveness of living cells. PMID:25957404

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

    SciTech Connect

    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.

  17. Lamellipodial actin mechanically links myosin activity with adhesion site formation

    PubMed Central

    Giannone, Gregory; Dubin-Thaler, Benjamin; Rossier, Olivier; Cai, Yunfei; Chaga, Oleg; Jiang, Guoying; Beaver, William; Döbereiner, Hans-Günther; Freund, Yoav; Borisy, Gary; Sheetz, Michael P.

    2013-01-01

    Summary Cell motility proceeds by cycles of edge protrusion, adhesion and retraction. Whether these functions are coordinated by biochemical or biomechanical processes is unknown. We find that myosin II pulls the rear of the lamellipodial actin network, causing upward bending, edge retraction and initiation of new adhesion sites. The network then separates from the edge and condenses over the myosin. Protrusion resumes as lamellipodial actin regenerates from the front and extends rearward until it reaches newly assembled myosin, initiating the next cycle. Upward bending, observed by evanescence and electron microscopy, results in ruffle formation when adhesion strength is low. Correlative fluorescence and electron microscopy shows that the regenerating lamellipodium forms a cohesive, separable layer of actin above the lamellum. Thus, actin polymerization periodically builds a mechanical link, the lamellipodium, connecting myosin motors with the initiation of adhesion sites, suggesting that the major functions driving motility are coordinated by a biomechanical process. PMID:17289574

  18. Crk Adaptors Negatively Regulate Actin Polymerization in Pedestals Formed by Enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (EPEC) by Binding to Tir Effector

    PubMed Central

    Martín-Villa, José Manuel; Benito-León, María; Martinez-Quiles, Narcisa

    2014-01-01

    Infections by enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (EPEC) cause diarrhea linked to high infant mortality in developing countries. EPEC adheres to epithelial cells and induces the formation of actin pedestals. Actin polymerization is driven fundamentally through signaling mediated by Tir bacterial effector protein, which inserts in the plasma membrane of the infected cell. Tir binds Nck adaptor proteins, which in turn recruit and activate N-WASP, a ubiquitous member of the Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome family of proteins. N-WASP activates the Arp2/3 complex to promote actin polymerization. Other proteins aside from components of the Tir-Nck-N-WASP pathway are recruited to the pedestals but their functions are unknown. Here we investigate the function of two alternatively spliced isoforms of Crk adaptors (CrkI/II) and the paralog protein CrkL during pedestal formation by EPEC. We found that the Crk isoforms act as redundant inhibitors of pedestal formation. The SH2 domain of CrkII and CrkL binds to phosphorylated tyrosine 474 of Tir and competes with Nck to bind Tir, preventing its recruitment to pedestals and thereby inhibiting actin polymerization. EPEC infection induces phosphorylation of the major regulatory tyrosine in CrkII and CrkL, possibly preventing the SH2 domain of these proteins from interacting with Tir. Phosphorylated CrkII and CrkL proteins localize specifically to the plasma membrane in contact with EPEC. Our study uncovers a novel role for Crk adaptors at pedestals, opening a new perspective in how these oncoproteins regulate actin polymerization. PMID:24675776

  19. Novel actin depolymerizing macrolide aplyronine A.

    PubMed

    Saito, S; Watabe, S; Ozaki, H; Kigoshi, H; Yamada, K; Fusetani, N; Karaki, H

    1996-09-01

    Aplyronine A is a macrolide isolated from Aplysia kurodai. By monitoring fluorescent intensity of pyrenyl-actin, it was found that aplyronine A inhibited both the velocity and the degree of actin polymerization. Aplyronine A also quickly depolymerized F-actin. The kinetics of depolymerization suggest that aplyronine A severs F-actin. The relationship between the concentration of total actin and F-actin at different concentrations of aplyronine A suggests that aplyronine A forms a 1:1 complex with G-actin. From these results, it is concluded that aplyronine A inhibits actin polymerization and depolymerizes F-actin by nibbling. Comparison of the chemical structure of aplyronine A and another actin-depolymerizing macrolide, mycalolide B, suggests that the side-chain but not the macrolide ring of aplyronine A may account for its actin binding and severing activity.

  20. Bacterial nucleators: actin' on actin

    PubMed Central

    Bugalhão, Joana N.; Mota, Luís Jaime; Franco, Irina S.

    2015-01-01

    The actin cytoskeleton is a key target of numerous microbial pathogens, including protozoa, fungi, bacteria and viruses. In particular, bacterial pathogens produce and deliver virulence effector proteins that hijack actin dynamics to enable bacterial invasion of host cells, allow movement within the host cytosol, facilitate intercellular spread or block phagocytosis. Many of these effector proteins directly or indirectly target the major eukaryotic actin nucleator, the Arp2/3 complex, by either mimicking nucleation promoting factors or activating upstream small GTPases. In contrast, this review is focused on a recently identified class of effector proteins from Gram-negative bacteria that function as direct actin nucleators. These effector proteins mimic functional activities of formins, WH2-nucleators and Ena/VASP assembly promoting factors demonstrating that bacteria have coopted the complete set of eukaryotic actin assembly pathways. Structural and functional analyses of these nucleators have revealed several motifs and/or mechanistic activities that are shared with eukaryotic actin nucleators. However, functional effects of these proteins during infection extend beyond plain actin polymerization leading to interference with other host cell functions such as vesicle trafficking, cell cycle progression and cell death. Therefore, their use as model systems could not only help in the understanding of the mechanistic details of actin polymerization but also provide novel insights into the connection between actin dynamics and other cellular pathways. PMID:26416078

  1. Hastily Formed Networks-Chaos to Recovery

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-09-01

    network connectivity. According to network theory, this rapidly created and growing network will naturally create hubs as it evolves. Hubs are...during the response phase. Geographical hubs are natural centers for organizing and require support of greater...and naturally occurring (emergent) impulse to self-organize. This naturally occurring phenomenon is an integral part of complex systems. The affected

  2. A pathogenic bacterium triggers epithelial signals to form a functional bacterial receptor that mediates actin pseudopod formation.

    PubMed Central

    Rosenshine, I; Ruschkowski, S; Stein, M; Reinscheid, D J; Mills, S D; Finlay, B B

    1996-01-01

    Enteropathogenic E. coli (EPEC) belongs to a group of bacterial pathogens that induce actin accumulation beneath adherent bacteria. We found that EPEC adherence to epithelial cells mediates the formation of fingerlike pseudopods (up to 10 microm) beneath bacteria. These actin-rich structures also contain tyrosine phosphorylated host proteins concentrated at the pseudopod tip beneath adherent EPEC. Intimate bacterial adherence (and pseudopod formation) occurred only after prior bacterial induction of tyrosine phosphorylation of an epithelial membrane protein, Hp90, which then associates directly with an EPEC adhesin, intimin. These interactions lead to cytoskeletal nucleation and pseudopod formation. This is the first example of a bacterial pathogen that triggers signals in epithelial cells which activates receptor binding activity to a specific bacterial ligand and subsequent cytoskeletal rearrangement. Images PMID:8654358

  3. Bistability in the Rac1, PAK, and RhoA Signaling Network Drives Actin Cytoskeleton Dynamics and Cell Motility Switches

    PubMed Central

    Byrne, Kate M.; Monsefi, Naser; Dawson, John C.; Degasperi, Andrea; Bukowski-Wills, Jimi-Carlo; Volinsky, Natalia; Dobrzyński, Maciej; Birtwistle, Marc R.; Tsyganov, Mikhail A.; Kiyatkin, Anatoly; Kida, Katarzyna; Finch, Andrew J.; Carragher, Neil O.; Kolch, Walter; Nguyen, Lan K.; von Kriegsheim, Alex; Kholodenko, Boris N.

    2016-01-01

    Summary Dynamic interactions between RhoA and Rac1, members of the Rho small GTPase family, play a vital role in the control of cell migration. Using predictive mathematical modeling, mass spectrometry-based quantitation of network components, and experimental validation in MDA-MB-231 mesenchymal breast cancer cells, we show that a network containing Rac1, RhoA, and PAK family kinases can produce bistable, switch-like responses to a graded PAK inhibition. Using a small chemical inhibitor of PAK, we demonstrate that cellular RhoA and Rac1 activation levels respond in a history-dependent, bistable manner to PAK inhibition. Consequently, we show that downstream signaling, actin dynamics, and cell migration also behave in a bistable fashion, displaying switches and hysteresis in response to PAK inhibition. Our results demonstrate that PAK is a critical component in the Rac1-RhoA inhibitory crosstalk that governs bistable GTPase activity, cell morphology, and cell migration switches. PMID:27136688

  4. Wireless Security Within Hastily Formed Networks

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2006-09-01

    Fortress Management and Policy Server (MaPS) .................52 e. Newbury Networks WiFi Watchdog.......................................53 F. SUMMARY...Secrets of Wireless Hacking , the authors argue the improved data confidentiality and integrity may improve wireless security for those choosing to...Juniper Networks Steel Belted RADIUS Appliance HW+SW 2, 3 N/A N 2 Newbury Networks WiFi Watchdog HW+SW 1, 3 N N N/A X X Phoenix Technologies

  5. GhCFE1A, a dynamic linker between the ER network and actin cytoskeleton, plays an important role in cotton fibre cell initiation and elongation.

    PubMed

    Lv, Fenni; Wang, Haihai; Wang, Xinyu; Han, Libo; Ma, Yinping; Wang, Sen; Feng, Zhidi; Niu, Xiaowei; Cai, Caiping; Kong, Zhaosheng; Zhang, Tianzhen; Guo, Wangzhen

    2015-04-01

    Fibre cell initiation and elongation is critical for cotton fibre development. However, little is known about the regulation of initiation and elongation during fibre cell development. Here, the regulatory role of a novel protein GhCFE1A was uncovered. GhCFE1A is preferentially expressed at initiation and rapid elongation stages during fibre development; in addition, much higher expression of GhCFE1A was detected at the fibre initiation stage in fibreless cotton mutants than in the fibre-bearing TM-1 wild-type. Importantly, overexpression of GhCFE1A in cotton not only delayed fibre cell elongation but also significantly reduced the density of lint and fuzz fibre initials and stem trichomes. Yeast two-hybrid assay showed that GhCFE1A interacted with several actin proteins, and the interaction was further confirmed by co-sedimentation assay. Interestingly, a subcellular localization assay showed that GhCFE1A resided on the cortical endoplasmic reticulum (ER) network and co-localized with actin cables. Moreover, the density of F-actin filaments was shown to be reduced in GhCFE1A-overexpressing fibres at the rapid elongation stage compared with the wild-type control. Taken together, the results demonstrate that GhCFE1A probably functions as a dynamic linker between the actin cytoskeleton and the ER network, and plays an important role in fibre cell initiation and elongation during cotton fibre development.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carlsson, Anders

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

  7. Actin polymerization is stimulated by actin cross-linking protein palladin.

    PubMed

    Gurung, Ritu; Yadav, Rahul; Brungardt, Joseph G; Orlova, Albina; Egelman, Edward H; Beck, Moriah R

    2016-02-15

    The actin scaffold protein palladin regulates both normal cell migration and invasive cell motility, processes that require the co-ordinated regulation of actin dynamics. However, the potential effect of palladin on actin dynamics has remained elusive. In the present study, we show that the actin-binding immunoglobulin-like domain of palladin, which is directly responsible for both actin binding and bundling, also stimulates actin polymerization in vitro. Palladin eliminated the lag phase that is characteristic of the slow nucleation step of actin polymerization. Furthermore, palladin dramatically reduced depolymerization, slightly enhanced the elongation rate, and did not alter the critical concentration. Microscopy and in vitro cross-linking assays reveal differences in actin bundle architecture when palladin is incubated with actin before or after polymerization. These results suggest a model whereby palladin stimulates a polymerization-competent form of globular or monomeric actin (G-actin), akin to metal ions, either through charge neutralization or through conformational changes.

  8. F-actin buckling coordinates contractility and severing in a biomimetic actomyosin cortex

    PubMed Central

    Murrell, Michael P.; Gardel, Margaret L.

    2012-01-01

    Here we develop a minimal model of the cell actomyosin cortex by forming a quasi-2D cross-linked filamentous actin (F-actin) network adhered to a model cell membrane and contracted by myosin thick filaments. Myosin motors generate both compressive and tensile stresses on F-actin and consequently induce large bending fluctuations, which reduces their effective persistence length to <1 μm. Over a large range of conditions, we show the extent of network contraction corresponds exactly to the extent of individual F-actin shortening via buckling. This demonstrates an essential role of buckling in breaking the symmetry between tensile and compressive stresses to facilitate mesoscale network contraction of up to 80% strain. Portions of buckled F-actin with a radius of curvature ∼300 nm are prone to severing and thus compressive stresses mechanically coordinate contractility with F-actin severing, the initial step of F-actin turnover. Finally, the F-actin curvature acquired by myosin-induced stresses can be further constrained by adhesion of the network to a membrane, accelerating filament severing but inhibiting the long-range transmission of the stresses necessary for network contractility. Thus, the extent of membrane adhesion can regulate the coupling between network contraction and F-actin severing. These data demonstrate the essential role of the nonlinear response of F-actin to compressive stresses in potentiating both myosin-mediated contractility and filament severing. This may serve as a general mechanism to mechanically coordinate contractility and cortical dynamics across diverse actomyosin assemblies in smooth muscle and nonmuscle cells. PMID:23213249

  9. Formaldehyde fixation is detrimental to actin cables in glucose-depleted S. cerevisiae cells

    PubMed Central

    Vasicova, Pavla; Rinnerthaler, Mark; Haskova, Danusa; Novakova, Lenka; Malcova, Ivana; Breitenbach, Michael; Hasek, Jiri

    2016-01-01

    Actin filaments form cortical patches and emanating cables in fermenting cells of Saccharomyces cerevisiae. This pattern has been shown to be depolarized in glucose-depleted cells after formaldehyde fixation and staining with rhodamine-tagged phalloidin. Loss of actin cables in mother cells was remarkable. Here we extend our knowledge on actin in live glucose-depleted cells co-expressing the marker of actin patches (Abp1-RFP) with the marker of actin cables (Abp140-GFP). Glucose depletion resulted in appearance of actin patches also in mother cells. However, even after 80 min of glucose deprivation these cells showed a clear network of actin cables labeled with Abp140-GFP in contrast to previously published data. In live cells with a mitochondrial dysfunction (rho0 cells), glucose depletion resulted in almost immediate appearance of Abp140-GFP foci partially overlapping with Abp1-RFP patches in mother cells. Residual actin cables were clustered in patch-associated bundles. A similar overlapping “patchy” pattern of both actin markers was observed upon treatment of glucose-deprived rho+ cells with FCCP (the inhibitor of oxidative phosphorylation) and upon treatment with formaldehyde. While the formaldehyde-targeted process stays unknown, our results indicate that published data on yeast actin cytoskeleton obtained from glucose-depleted cells after fixation should be considered with caution.

  10. Actin Skeletons at the Membrane as Liquid Crystal Elastomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Discher, Dennis; Dalhaimer, Paul; Levine, Alex; Lubensky, Tom

    2002-03-01

    Actin filaments crosslinked by proteins such as spectrin form plasma membrane networks in a number of cell-types, including the red blood cell and the outer hair cell of the inner ear. Actin filaments are stiff compared to spectrin and can be considered hard rods. We statistically simulate network phase behavior at finite temperature by Monte Carlo methods, and explore the effects of spectrin and actin length as well as isotropic and shear stresses. Relative lengths required for a zero pressure nematic phase are determined, for exmaple, and indicate structural requirements for obtaining a 2D anisotropic elastomer. Emerging studies of network elasticity examine the anisotropic state and begin to probe the relevance of hyper-soft modes to hearing.

  11. Nucleus-associated actin in Amoeba proteus.

    PubMed

    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.

  12. Soft viscoelastic properties of nuclear actin age oocytes due to gravitational creep.

    PubMed

    Feric, Marina; Broedersz, Chase P; Brangwynne, Clifford P

    2015-11-18

    The actin cytoskeleton helps maintain structural organization within living cells. In large X. laevis oocytes, gravity becomes a dominant force and is countered by a nuclear actin network that prevents liquid-like nuclear bodies from immediate sedimentation and coalescence. However, nuclear actin's mechanical properties, and how they facilitate the stabilization of nuclear bodies, remain unknown. Using active microrheology, we find that nuclear actin forms a weak viscoelastic network, with a modulus of roughly 0.1 Pa. Embedded probe particles subjected to a constant force exhibit continuous displacement, due to viscoelastic creep. Gravitational forces also cause creep displacement of nuclear bodies, resulting in their asymmetric nuclear distribution. Thus, nuclear actin does not indefinitely support the emulsion of nuclear bodies, but only kinetically stabilizes them by slowing down gravitational creep to ~2 months. This is similar to the viability time of large oocytes, suggesting gravitational creep ages oocytes, with fatal consequences on long timescales.

  13. UNC-45/CRO1/She4p (UCS) Protein Forms Elongated Dimer and Joins Two Myosin Heads Near Their Actin Binding Region

    SciTech Connect

    H Shi; G Blobel

    2011-12-31

    UNC-45/CRO1/She4p (UCS) proteins have variously been proposed to affect the folding, stability, and ATPase activity of myosins. They are the only proteins known to interact directly with the motor domain. To gain more insight into UCS function, we determined the atomic structure of the yeast UCS protein, She4p, at 2.9 {angstrom} resolution. We found that 16 helical repeats are organized into an L-shaped superhelix with an amphipathic N-terminal helix dangling off the short arm of the L-shaped molecule. In the crystal, She4p forms a 193-{angstrom}-long, zigzag-shaped dimer through three distinct and evolutionary conserved interfaces. We have identified She4p's C-terminal region as a ligand for a 27-residue-long epitope on the myosin motor domain. Remarkably, this region consists of two adjacent, but distinct, binding epitopes localized at the nucleotide-responsive cleft between the nucleotide- and actin-filament-binding sites. One epitope is situated inside the cleft, the other outside the cleft. After ATP hydrolysis and Pi ejection, the cleft narrows at its base from 20 to 12 {angstrom} thereby occluding the inside the cleft epitope, while leaving the adjacent, outside the cleft binding epitope accessible to UCS binding. Hence, one cycle of higher and lower binding affinity would accompany one ATP hydrolysis cycle and a single step in the walk on an actin filament rope. We propose that a UCS dimer links two myosins at their motor domains and thereby functions as one of the determinants for step size of myosin on actin filaments.

  14. Photonic Quantum Networks formed from NV− centers

    PubMed Central

    Nemoto, Kae; Trupke, Michael; Devitt, Simon J.; Scharfenberger, Burkhard; Buczak, Kathrin; Schmiedmayer, Jörg; Munro, William J.

    2016-01-01

    In this article we present a simple repeater scheme based on the negatively-charged nitrogen vacancy centre in diamond. Each repeater node is built from modules comprising an optical cavity containing a single NV−, with one nuclear spin from 15N as quantum memory. The module uses only deterministic processes and interactions to achieve high fidelity operations (>99%), and modules are connected by optical fiber. In the repeater node architecture, the processes between modules by photons can be in principle deterministic, however current limitations on optical components lead the processes to be probabilistic but heralded. Our resource-modest repeater architecture contains two modules at each node, and the repeater nodes are then connected by entangled photon pairs. We discuss the performance of such a quantum repeater network with modest resources and then incorporate more resource-intense strategies step by step. Our architecture should allow large-scale quantum information networks with existing or near future technology. PMID:27215433

  15. Photonic Quantum Networks formed from NV‑ centers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nemoto, Kae; Trupke, Michael; Devitt, Simon J.; Scharfenberger, Burkhard; Buczak, Kathrin; Schmiedmayer, Jörg; Munro, William J.

    2016-05-01

    In this article we present a simple repeater scheme based on the negatively-charged nitrogen vacancy centre in diamond. Each repeater node is built from modules comprising an optical cavity containing a single NV‑, with one nuclear spin from 15N as quantum memory. The module uses only deterministic processes and interactions to achieve high fidelity operations (>99%), and modules are connected by optical fiber. In the repeater node architecture, the processes between modules by photons can be in principle deterministic, however current limitations on optical components lead the processes to be probabilistic but heralded. Our resource-modest repeater architecture contains two modules at each node, and the repeater nodes are then connected by entangled photon pairs. We discuss the performance of such a quantum repeater network with modest resources and then incorporate more resource-intense strategies step by step. Our architecture should allow large-scale quantum information networks with existing or near future technology.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2011-01-01

    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. PMID:21444821

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

    PubMed

    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.

  18. Actinic reticuloid

    SciTech Connect

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

    1982-09-01

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

  19. A unified design space of synthetic stripe-forming networks.

    PubMed

    Schaerli, Yolanda; Munteanu, Andreea; Gili, Magüi; Cotterell, James; Sharpe, James; Isalan, Mark

    2014-09-23

    Synthetic biology is a promising tool to study the function and properties of gene regulatory networks. Gene circuits with predefined behaviours have been successfully built and modelled, but largely on a case-by-case basis. Here we go beyond individual networks and explore both computationally and synthetically the design space of possible dynamical mechanisms for 3-node stripe-forming networks. First, we computationally test every possible 3-node network for stripe formation in a morphogen gradient. We discover four different dynamical mechanisms to form a stripe and identify the minimal network of each group. Next, with the help of newly established engineering criteria we build these four networks synthetically and show that they indeed operate with four fundamentally distinct mechanisms. Finally, this close match between theory and experiment allows us to infer and subsequently build a 2-node network that represents the archetype of the explored design space.

  20. A unified design space of synthetic stripe-forming networks

    PubMed Central

    Schaerli, Yolanda; Munteanu, Andreea; Gili, Magüi; Cotterell, James; Sharpe, James; Isalan, Mark

    2014-01-01

    Synthetic biology is a promising tool to study the function and properties of gene regulatory networks. Gene circuits with predefined behaviours have been successfully built and modelled, but largely on a case-by-case basis. Here we go beyond individual networks and explore both computationally and synthetically the design space of possible dynamical mechanisms for 3-node stripe-forming networks. First, we computationally test every possible 3-node network for stripe formation in a morphogen gradient. We discover four different dynamical mechanisms to form a stripe and identify the minimal network of each group. Next, with the help of newly established engineering criteria we build these four networks synthetically and show that they indeed operate with four fundamentally distinct mechanisms. Finally, this close match between theory and experiment allows us to infer and subsequently build a 2-node network that represents the archetype of the explored design space. PMID:25247316

  1. Polycation induced actin bundles.

    PubMed

    Muhlrad, Andras; Grintsevich, Elena E; Reisler, Emil

    2011-04-01

    Three polycations, polylysine, the polyamine spermine and the polycationic protein lysozyme were used to study the formation, structure, ionic strength sensitivity and dissociation of polycation-induced actin bundles. Bundles form fast, simultaneously with the polymerization of MgATP-G-actins, upon the addition of polycations to solutions of actins at low ionic strength conditions. This indicates that nuclei and/or nascent filaments bundle due to attractive, electrostatic effect of polycations and the neutralization of repulsive interactions of negative charges on actin. The attractive forces between the filaments are strong, as shown by the low (in nanomolar range) critical concentration of their bundling at low ionic strength. These bundles are sensitive to ionic strength and disassemble partially in 100 mM NaCl, but both the dissociation and ionic strength sensitivity can be countered by higher polycation concentrations. Cys374 residues of actin monomers residing on neighboring filaments in the bundles can be cross-linked by the short span (5.4Å) MTS-1 (1,1-methanedyl bismethanethiosulfonate) cross-linker, which indicates a tight packing of filaments in the bundles. The interfilament cross-links, which connect monomers located on oppositely oriented filaments, prevent disassembly of bundles at high ionic strength. Cofilin and the polysaccharide polyanion heparin disassemble lysozyme induced actin bundles more effectively than the polylysine-induced bundles. The actin-lysozyme bundles are pathologically significant as both proteins are found in the pulmonary airways of cystic fibrosis patients. Their bundles contribute to the formation of viscous mucus, which is the main cause of breathing difficulties and eventual death in this disorder.

  2. New mechanism of γ-H2AX generation: Surfactant-induced actin disruption causes deoxyribonuclease I translocation to the nucleus and forms DNA double-strand breaks.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Xiaoxu; Yang, Gang; Toyooka, Tatsushi; Ibuki, Yuko

    2015-12-01

    We previously showed that nonionic surfactants, nonylphenol polyethoxylates (NPEOs), induced phosphorylation of histone H2AX, forming γ-H2AX. In this study, we analyzed the mechanism of γ-H2AX generation by an NPEO with 15 ethylene oxide units (NPEO(15)). In MCF-7 breast carcinoma cells, NPEO(15) treatment induced γ-H2AX in a dose-dependent manner. EDTA and ZnCl2, two inhibitors of deoxyribonuclease I (DNase I), inhibited both the γ-H2AX and DNA double-strand breaks induced by NPEO(15). NPEO(15) disrupted filamentous actin and released free DNase I as detected by cell fractionation analysis. Based on immunofluorescence staining of DNase I and monitoring DNase I-GFP localization, DNase I was translocated from the cytosol to the nucleus of cells after treatment with NPEO(15). This translocation did not occur with the common DNA damage inducers ultraviolet B irradiation and hydrogen peroxide. Other surfactants, Tween 20, Triton X-100 and Nonidet P-40, also generated γ-H2AX. These results show that γ-H2AX induction by surfactants including NPEOs, occurs via a new mechanism involving release of free DNase I with actin disruption. This mechanism is distinct from the process of γ-H2AX generation caused by direct chemically induced DNA damage.

  3. Direct actin binding to A- and B-type lamin tails and actin filament bundling by the lamin A tail

    PubMed Central

    Simon, Dan N; Zastrow, Michael S

    2010-01-01

    Nuclear intermediate filament networks formed by A- and B-type lamins are major components of the nucleoskeleton. Lamins have growing links to human physiology and disease including Emery-Dreifuss muscular dystrophy (EDMD), lipodystrophy, cardiomyopathy, neuropathy, cerebellar disorders and segmental accelerated ‘aging’ syndromes. How lamins interact with other nucleoskeletal components, and even the identities of these other components, are open questions. Previous studies suggested lamins might bind actin. We report that the recombinant C-terminal tail domain of human A- and B-type lamins binds directly to purified actin in high-speed pelleting assays. This interaction maps to a conserved Actin Binding site (AB-1) comprising lamin A residues 461–536 in the Ig-fold domain, which are 54% identical in lamin B1. Two EDMD-causing missense mutations (R527P and L530P) in lamin A that are predicted to disrupt the Ig-fold, each reduced F-actin binding by ∼66%, whereas the surface-exposed lipodystrophy-causing R482Q mutation had no significant effect. The lamin A tail was unique among lamins in having a second actin-binding site (AB-2). This second site was mapped to lamin A tail residues 564–608, based on actin-binding results for the lamin C tail and internal deletions in the lamin A tail that cause Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria Syndrome (Δ35, Δ50) or restrictive dermopathy (Δ90). Supporting the presence of two actin-binding sites, recombinant precursor (unmodified) and mature lamin A tails (not C or B1 tails) each bundled F-actin in vitro: furthermore F-actin bundling was reduced 25–40% by the R527P, L530P, Δ35 and Δ50 mutations, and was abolished by Δ90. Unexpectedly, the mature lamin A tail bound F-actin significantly more efficiently than did the prelamin A tail; this suggested unmodified residues 647–664, unique to prelamin A, might auto-inhibit binding to actin (and potentially other partners). These biochemical results suggest direct mechanisms

  4. Lifeact: a versatile marker to visualize F-actin.

    PubMed

    Riedl, Julia; Crevenna, Alvaro H; Kessenbrock, Kai; Yu, Jerry Haochen; Neukirchen, Dorothee; Bista, Michal; Bradke, Frank; Jenne, Dieter; Holak, Tad A; Werb, Zena; Sixt, Michael; Wedlich-Soldner, Roland

    2008-07-01

    Live imaging of the actin cytoskeleton is crucial for the study of many fundamental biological processes, but current approaches to visualize actin have several limitations. Here we describe Lifeact, a 17-amino-acid peptide, which stained filamentous actin (F-actin) structures in eukaryotic cells and tissues. Lifeact did not interfere with actin dynamics in vitro and in vivo and in its chemically modified peptide form allowed visualization of actin dynamics in nontransfectable cells.

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-09-01

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

  6. Antibodies to Actin in Autoimmune Neutropenia

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1990-02-01

    protein as actin. Purified Acanthamoeba actin by anti-neutrophil antibodies in autoimmune neutropenia, comigrated with the protein and was specifically...anti-rabbit IgG were obtained from ICN Immunobiolog- formed using purified Acanthamoeba actin (gift of Dr Blair Bowers. icals, Naperville, IL. Cells...preparations𔃼 1 - was the protein recognized by these anti-neutrophil antibody 6 .2- positive sera, lgG, and F(ab’) 2. Purified Acanthamoeba actin

  7. The polarity protein Inturned links NPHP4 to Daam1 to control the subapical actin network in multiciliated cells.

    PubMed

    Yasunaga, Takayuki; Hoff, Sylvia; Schell, Christoph; Helmstädter, Martin; Kretz, Oliver; Kuechlin, Sebastian; Yakulov, Toma A; Engel, Christina; Müller, Barbara; Bensch, Robert; Ronneberger, Olaf; Huber, Tobias B; Lienkamp, Soeren S; Walz, Gerd

    2015-12-07

    Motile cilia polarization requires intracellular anchorage to the cytoskeleton; however, the molecular machinery that supports this process remains elusive. We report that Inturned plays a central role in coordinating the interaction between cilia-associated proteins and actin-nucleation factors. We observed that knockdown of nphp4 in multiciliated cells of the Xenopus laevis epidermis compromised ciliogenesis and directional fluid flow. Depletion of nphp4 disrupted the subapical actin layer. Comparison to the structural defects caused by inturned depletion revealed striking similarities. Furthermore, coimmunoprecipitation assays demonstrated that the two proteins interact with each other and that Inturned mediates the formation of ternary protein complexes between NPHP4 and DAAM1. Knockdown of daam1, but not formin-2, resulted in similar disruption of the subapical actin web, whereas nphp4 depletion prevented the association of Inturned with the basal bodies. Thus, Inturned appears to function as an adaptor protein that couples cilia-associated molecules to actin-modifying proteins to rearrange the local actin cytoskeleton.

  8. The polarity protein Inturned links NPHP4 to Daam1 to control the subapical actin network in multiciliated cells

    PubMed Central

    Yasunaga, Takayuki; Hoff, Sylvia; Schell, Christoph; Helmstädter, Martin; Kretz, Oliver; Kuechlin, Sebastian; Yakulov, Toma A.; Engel, Christina; Müller, Barbara; Bensch, Robert; Ronneberger, Olaf; Huber, Tobias B.; Lienkamp, Soeren S.

    2015-01-01

    Motile cilia polarization requires intracellular anchorage to the cytoskeleton; however, the molecular machinery that supports this process remains elusive. We report that Inturned plays a central role in coordinating the interaction between cilia-associated proteins and actin-nucleation factors. We observed that knockdown of nphp4 in multiciliated cells of the Xenopus laevis epidermis compromised ciliogenesis and directional fluid flow. Depletion of nphp4 disrupted the subapical actin layer. Comparison to the structural defects caused by inturned depletion revealed striking similarities. Furthermore, coimmunoprecipitation assays demonstrated that the two proteins interact with each other and that Inturned mediates the formation of ternary protein complexes between NPHP4 and DAAM1. Knockdown of daam1, but not formin-2, resulted in similar disruption of the subapical actin web, whereas nphp4 depletion prevented the association of Inturned with the basal bodies. Thus, Inturned appears to function as an adaptor protein that couples cilia-associated molecules to actin-modifying proteins to rearrange the local actin cytoskeleton. PMID:26644512

  9. Regulation of the Actin Cytoskeleton by an Interaction of IQGAP Related Protein GAPA with Filamin and Cortexillin I

    PubMed Central

    Rieger, Daniela; Müller, Rolf; Rivero, Francisco; Faix, Jan; Schleicher, Michael; Noegel, Angelika A.

    2010-01-01

    Filamin and Cortexillin are F-actin crosslinking proteins in Dictyostelium discoideum allowing actin filaments to form three-dimensional networks. GAPA, an IQGAP related protein, is required for cytokinesis and localizes to the cleavage furrow during cytokinesis. Here we describe a novel interaction with Filamin which is required for cytokinesis and regulation of the F-actin content. The interaction occurs through the actin binding domain of Filamin and the GRD domain of GAPA. A similar interaction takes place with Cortexillin I. We further report that Filamin associates with Rac1a implying that filamin might act as a scaffold for small GTPases. Filamin and activated Rac associate with GAPA to regulate actin remodelling. Overexpression of filamin and GAPA in the various strains suggests that GAPA regulates the actin cytoskeleton through interaction with Filamin and that it controls cytokinesis through association with Filamin and Cortexillin. PMID:21085675

  10. Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinase-Associated Protein (PI3KAP)/XB130 Crosslinks Actin Filaments through Its Actin Binding and Multimerization Properties In Vitro and Enhances Endocytosis in HEK293 Cells

    PubMed Central

    Yamanaka, Daisuke; Akama, Takeshi; Chida, Kazuhiro; Minami, Shiro; Ito, Koichi; Hakuno, Fumihiko; Takahashi, Shin-Ichiro

    2016-01-01

    Actin-crosslinking proteins control actin filament networks and bundles and contribute to various cellular functions including regulation of cell migration, cell morphology, and endocytosis. Phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase-associated protein (PI3KAP)/XB130 has been reported to be localized to actin filaments (F-actin) and required for cell migration in thyroid carcinoma cells. Here, we show a role for PI3KAP/XB130 as an actin-crosslinking protein. First, we found that the carboxyl terminal region of PI3KAP/XB130 containing amino acid residues 830–840 was required and sufficient for localization to F-actin in NIH3T3 cells, and this region is directly bound to F-actin in vitro. Moreover, actin-crosslinking assay revealed that recombinant PI3KAP/XB130 crosslinked F-actin. In general, actin-crosslinking proteins often multimerize to assemble multiple actin-binding sites. We then investigated whether PI3KAP/XB130 could form a multimer. Blue native-PAGE analysis showed that recombinant PI3KAP/XB130 was detected at 250–1200 kDa although the molecular mass was approximately 125 kDa, suggesting that PI3KAP/XB130 formed multimers. Furthermore, we found that the amino terminal 40 amino acids were required for this multimerization by co-immunoprecipitation assay in HEK293T cells. Deletion mutants of PI3KAP/XB130 lacking the actin-binding region or the multimerizing region did not crosslink actin filaments, indicating that actin binding and multimerization of PI3KAP/XB130 were necessary to crosslink F-actin. Finally, we examined roles of PI3KAP/XB130 on endocytosis, an actin-related biological process. Overexpression of PI3KAP/XB130 enhanced dextran uptake in HEK 293 cells. However, most of the cells transfected with the deletion mutant lacking the actin-binding region incorporated dextran to a similar extent as control cells. Taken together, these results demonstrate that PI3KAP/XB130 crosslinks F-actin through both its actin-binding region and multimerizing region and

  11. Analysis of microtubule growth dynamics arising from altered actin network structure and contractility in breast tumor cells.

    PubMed

    Ory, Eleanor; Bhandary, Lekhana; Boggs, Amanda; Chakrabarti, Kristi; Parker, Joshua; Losert, Wolfgang; Martin, Stuart S

    2017-01-16

    The periphery of epithelial cells is shaped by opposing cytoskeletal physical forces generated predominately by two dynamic force generating systems - growing microtubule ends push against the boundary from the cell center, and the actin cortex contracts the attached plasma membrane. Here we investigate how changes to the structure and dynamics of the actin cortex alter the dynamics of microtubules. Current drugs target actin polymerization and contraction to reduce cell division and invasiveness; however, the impacts on microtubule dynamics remain incompletely understood. Using human MCF-7 breast tumor cells expressing GFP-tagged microtubule end-binding-protein-1 (EB1) and coexpression of cytoplasmic fluorescent protein mCherry, we map the trajectories of growing microtubule ends and cytoplasmic boundary respectively. Based on EB1 tracks and cytoplasmic boundary outlines, we calculate the speed, distance from cytoplasmic boundary, and straightness of microtubule growth. Actin depolymerization with Latrunculin-A reduces EB1 growth speed as well as allows the trajectories to extend beyond the cytoplasmic boundary. Blebbistatin, a direct myosin-II inhibitor, reduced EB1 speed and yielded less straight EB1 trajectories. Inhibiting signaling upstream of myosin-II contractility via the Rho-kinase inhibitor, Y-27632, altered EB1 dynamics differently from Blebbistatin. These results indicate that reduced actin cortex integrity can induce distinct alterations in microtubule dynamics. Given recent findings that tumor stem cell characteristics are increased by drugs which reduce actin contractility or stabilize microtubules, it remains important to clearly define how cytoskeletal drugs alter the interactions between these two filament systems in tumor cells.

  12. IQGAP and mitotic exit network (MEN) proteins are required for cytokinesis and re-polarization of the actin cytoskeleton in the budding yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

    PubMed

    Corbett, Mark; Xiong, Yulan; Boyne, James R; Wright, Daniel J; Munro, Ewen; Price, Clive

    2006-11-01

    In budding yeast the final stages of the cell division cycle, cytokinesis and cell separation, are distinct events that require to be coupled, both together and with mitotic exit. Here we demonstrate that mutations in genes of the mitotic exit network (MEN) prevent cell separation and are synthetically lethal in combination with both cytokinesis and septation defective mutations. Analysis of the synthetic lethal phenotypes reveals that Iqg1p functions in combination with the MEN components, Tem1p, Cdc15p Dbf20p and Dbf2p to govern the re-polarization of the actin cytoskeleton to either side of the bud neck. In addition phosphorylation of the conserved PCH protein, Hof1p, is dependent upon these activities and requires actin ring assembly. Recruitment of Dbf2p to the bud neck is dependent upon actin ring assembly and correlates with Hof1p phosphorylation. Failure to phosphorylate Hof1p results in the increased stability of the protein and its persistence at the bud neck. These data establish a mechanistic dependency of cell separation upon an intermediate step requiring actomyosin ring assembly.

  13. Design, fabrication and testing of a multibeam forming network

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1984-01-01

    A concept for a multiple beam forming network to route signals from eight input ports to twenty-one output ports so as to form eight independent seven-element cluster radiators was designed, fabricated, and tested. The operating frequency band is 2.226 to 2.254 GHz and the maximum power to any input port is two watts. The network consists of eight seven-way power dividers connected to twenty-one seven-way power combiners. The network utilizes barline circuits between parallel ground planes for the power distribution and collection. Interconnections are made with short rigid co-axial lines built into the network. The concept, general design procedures, mechanical configuration, and electrical performance are described. It appears that the network is quite satisfactory for demonstrating practical feasibility of the technical concept.

  14. Actin-mediated motion of meiotic chromosomes

    PubMed Central

    Koszul, R.; Kim, K. P.; Prentiss, M.; Kleckner, N.; Kameoka, S.

    2008-01-01

    Summary Chromosome movement is prominent during meiosis. Here, using a combination of in vitro and in vivo approaches, we elucidate the basis for dynamic mid-prophase chromosome movement in budding yeast. Diverse finding reveal a process in which, at the pachytene stage, individual telomere/nuclear envelope (NE) ensembles attach passively to, and then move in concert with, nucleus-hugging actin cables that are continuous with the global cytoskeletal actin network. Other chromosomes move in concert with lead chromosome(s). The same process, in modulated form, explains the zygotene "bouquet" configuration in which, immediately preceding pachytene, chromosome ends colocalize dynamically in a restricted region of the NE. Mechanical properties of the system and biological roles of mid-prophase movement for meiosis, including recombination, are discussed. PMID:18585353

  15. Actin-binding proteins take the reins in growth cones.

    PubMed

    Pak, Chi W; Flynn, Kevin C; Bamburg, James R

    2008-02-01

    Higher-order actin-based networks (actin superstructures) are important for growth-cone motility and guidance. Principles for generating, organizing and remodelling actin superstructures have emerged from recent findings in cell-free systems, non-neuronal cells and growth cones. This Review examines how actin superstructures are initiated de novo at the leading-edge membrane and how the spontaneous organization of actin superstructures is driven by ensembles of actin-binding proteins. How the regulation of actin-binding proteins can affect growth-cone turning and axonal regeneration is also discussed.

  16. Direct interaction of microtubule- and actin-based transport motors

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Huang, J. D.; Brady, S. T.; Richards, B. W.; Stenolen, D.; Resau, J. H.; Copeland, N. G.; Jenkins, N. A.

    1999-01-01

    The microtubule network is thought to be used for long-range transport of cellular components in animal cells whereas the actin network is proposed to be used for short-range transport, although the mechanism(s) by which this transport is coordinated is poorly understood. For example, in sea urchins long-range Ca2+-regulated transport of exocytotic vesicles requires a microtubule-based motor, whereas an actin-based motor is used for short-range transport. In neurons, microtubule-based kinesin motor proteins are used for long-range vesicular transport but microtubules do not extend into the neuronal termini, where actin filaments form the cytoskeletal framework, and kinesins are rapidly degraded upon their arrival in neuronal termini, indicating that vesicles may have to be transferred from microtubules to actin tracks to reach their final destination. Here we show that an actin-based vesicle-transport motor, MyoVA, can interact directly with a microtubule-based transport motor, KhcU. As would be expected if these complexes were functional, they also contain kinesin light chains and the localization of MyoVA and KhcU overlaps in the cell. These results indicate that cellular transport is, in part, coordinated through the direct interaction of different motor molecules.

  17. [The reorganization of actin cytoskeleton and microtubule system of human endothelial vein in the intercellular contacts formation].

    PubMed

    Shahov, A S; Dugina, V B; Alieva, I B

    2015-01-01

    Endothelial cells are tightly fitted to each other and lining the interior surface of all vessels of living organism to provide vascular permeability regulation and interchange between the blood circulating in vessels and tissue fluids of those organs in which these vessels are located. In vitro endothelial monolayer conserve it's basic barrier function which is native for vessels endothelium. Based on this fact we used endothelial cells growing in vitro as a model system in experimental studies of cytoskeletal and adhesion cell components interaction. In current paper, cultured human vein endothelial cells monolayer was used to quantify cytoskeleton alterations in the of endothelial cells from spreading and formation of the first cell-cell contacts to confluent monolayer formation. The system of actin filaments formed two different cytoskeletal structures in the cells of venous endothelium: 1) cortical actin network; 2) actin stress fibers (bundles) arranged parallel to the substrate. Two actin isoforms, β- and γ-cytoplasmic (non-muscle) actins, are expressed in endothelial cells. The bundles of actin stress fibers were detected by immunofluorescent staining with antibody against β-actin, whereas antibodies against γ-actin identified cortical and lamellar networks. For assessment of the actin cytoskeleton organization it's fluorescence intensity on the area of 10 μM2 located (1) near the free edge, and (2) in the zone of cell-cell contacts were analyzed. Fluorescence intensity of β-actin structures was higher in the areas of cell-cell contact. The fluorescence of γ-actin structures was more intensive at the leading edges of the lamellae, and was the lowest on the stable edges of the cells with formed cell-cell contacts. The endothelial monolayer formation was accompanied by microtubule system alteration: the number of microtubules increased at the cell edge, and besides the microtubules quantity in the area of already formed cell-cell contact was always

  18. Bacterial Actins and Their Interactors.

    PubMed

    Gayathri, Pananghat

    2017-01-01

    Bacterial actins polymerize in the presence of nucleotide (preferably ATP), form a common arrangement of monomeric interfaces within a protofilament, and undergo ATP hydrolysis-dependent change in stability of the filament-all of which contribute to performing their respective functions. The relative stability of the filament in the ADP-bound form compared to that of ATP and the rate of addition of monomers at the two ends decide the filament dynamics. One of the major differences between eukaryotic actin and bacterial actins is the variety in protofilament arrangements and dynamics exhibited by the latter. The filament structure and the polymerization dynamics enable them to perform various functions such as shape determination in rod-shaped bacteria (MreB), cell division (FtsA), plasmid segregation (ParM family of actin-like proteins), and organelle positioning (MamK). Though the architecture and dynamics of a few representative filaments have been studied, information on the effect of interacting partners on bacterial actin filament dynamics is not very well known. The chapter reviews some of the structural and functional aspects of bacterial actins, with special focus on the effect that interacting partners exert on the dynamics of bacterial actins, and how these assist them to carry out the functions within the bacterial cell.

  19. Dynamics of Opinion Forming in Structurally Balanced Social Networks

    PubMed Central

    Altafini, Claudio

    2012-01-01

    A structurally balanced social network is a social community that splits into two antagonistic factions (typical example being a two-party political system). The process of opinion forming on such a community is most often highly predictable, with polarized opinions reflecting the bipartition of the network. The aim of this paper is to suggest a class of dynamical systems, called monotone systems, as natural models for the dynamics of opinion forming on structurally balanced social networks. The high predictability of the outcome of a decision process is explained in terms of the order-preserving character of the solutions of this class of dynamical systems. If we represent a social network as a signed graph in which individuals are the nodes and the signs of the edges represent friendly or hostile relationships, then the property of structural balance corresponds to the social community being splittable into two antagonistic factions, each containing only friends. PMID:22761667

  20. Functional synergy of actin filament cross-linking proteins.

    PubMed

    Tseng, Yiider; Schafer, Benjamin W; Almo, Steven C; Wirtz, Denis

    2002-07-12

    The organization of filamentous actin (F-actin) in resilient networks is coordinated by various F-actin cross-linking proteins. The relative tolerance of cells to null mutations of genes that code for a single actin cross-linking protein suggests that the functions of those proteins are highly redundant. This apparent functional redundancy may, however, reflect the limited resolution of available assays in assessing the mechanical role of F-actin cross-linking/bundling proteins. Using reconstituted F-actin networks and rheological methods, we demonstrate how alpha-actinin and fascin, two F-actin cross-linking/bundling proteins that co-localize along stress fibers and in lamellipodia, could synergistically enhance the resilience of F-actin networks in vitro. These two proteins can generate microfilament arrays that "yield" at a strain amplitude that is much larger than each one of the proteins separately. F-actin/alpha-actinin/fascin networks display strain-induced hardening, whereby the network "stiffens" under shear deformations, a phenomenon that is non-existent in F-actin/fascin networks and much weaker in F-actin/alpha-actinin networks. Strain-hardening is further enhanced at high rates of deformation and high concentrations of actin cross-linking proteins. A simplified model suggests that the optimum results of the competition between the increased stiffness of bundles and their decreased density of cross-links. Our studies support a re-evaluation of the notion of functional redundancy among cytoskeletal regulatory proteins.

  1. Localization by indirect immunofluorescence of tetrin, actin, and centrin to the oral apparatus and buccal cavity of the macrostomal form of Tetrahymena vorax.

    PubMed

    McLaughlin, Neil B; Buhse, Howard E

    2004-01-01

    We have taken advantage of the size of the macrostomal oral apparatus of Tetrahymena vorax to investigate the immunofluorescent localization of three cytoskeletal proteins--tetrin, actin, and centrin. Tetrin and actin antibodies co-localize to cross-connectives that anchor the membranelles. These antibodies also recognize the coarse filamentous reticulum, a filament associated with the undulating membrane. Actin-specific localization extends beyond the coarse filamentous reticulum-undulating membrane complex into a region called the specialized cytoplasm. A centrin antibody localizes to the fine filamentous reticulum which, along with microtubules of the oral ribs, circumscribes the cytostomal opening. Models of phagocytic contraction based on these data are presented.

  2. Actinic Prurigo.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Carreón, Alma Angélica; Rodríguez-Lobato, Erika; Rodríguez-Gutiérrez, Georgina; Cuevas-González, Juan Carlos; Mancheno-Valencia, Alexandra; Solís-Arias, Martha Patricia; Vega-Memije, María Elisa; Hojyo-Tomoka, María Teresa; Domínguez-Soto, Luciano

    2015-01-01

    Actinic prurigo is an idiopathic photodermatosis that affects the skin, as well as the labial and conjunctival mucosa in indigenous and mestizo populations of Latin America. It starts predominantly in childhood, has a chronic course, and is exacerbated with solar exposure. Little is known of its pathophysiology, including the known mechanisms of the participation of HLA-DR4 and an abnormal immunologic response with increase of T CD4+ lymphocytes. The presence of IgE, eosinophils, and mast cells suggests that it is a hypersensitivity reaction (likely type IVa or b). The diagnosis is clinical, and the presence of lymphoid follicles in the mucosal histopathologic study of mucosa is pathognomonic. The best available treatment to date is thalidomide, despite its secondary effects.

  3. Characterization and dynamics of cytoplasmic F-actin in higher plant endosperm cells during interphase, mitosis, and cytokinesis

    PubMed Central

    1987-01-01

    We have identified an F-actin cytoskeletal network that remains throughout interphase, mitosis, and cytokinesis of higher plant endosperm cells. Fluorescent labeling was obtained using actin monoclonal antibodies and/or rhodamine-phalloidin. Video-enhanced microscopy and ultrastructural observations of immunogold-labeled preparations illustrated microfilament-microtubule co-distribution and interactions. Actin was also identified in cell crude extract with Western blotting. During interphase, microfilament and microtubule arrays formed two distinct networks that intermingled. At the onset of mitosis, when microtubules rearranged into the mitotic spindle, microfilaments were redistributed to the cell cortex, while few microfilaments remained in the spindle. During mitosis, the cortical actin network remained as an elastic cage around the mitotic apparatus and was stretched parallel to the spindle axis during poleward movement of chromosomes. This suggested the presence of dynamic cross-links that rearrange when they are submitted to slow and regular mitotic forces. At the poles, the regular network is maintained. After midanaphase, new, short microfilaments invaded the equator when interzonal vesicles were transported along the phragmoplast microtubules. Colchicine did not affect actin distribution, and cytochalasin B or D did not inhibit chromosome transport. Our data on endosperm cells suggested that plant cytoplasmic actin has an important role in the cell cortex integrity and in the structural dynamics of the poorly understood cytoplasm- mitotic spindle interface. F-actin may contribute to the regulatory mechanisms of microtubule-dependent or guided transport of vesicles during mitosis and cytokinesis in higher plant cells. PMID:3680376

  4. The Network Form of Implementing Educational Programs: Differences and Typology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sobolev, Alexandr Borisovich

    2016-01-01

    The article describes peculiarities of implementation and major differences in network educational programs, currently introduced in Russia. It presents a general typology of models and forms for implementing interaction between educational institutions of Russia, including teacher institutes and federal universities, as well as a typology of…

  5. Actin dynamics and cofilin-actin rods in Alzheimer disease

    PubMed Central

    Bamburg, James R.; Bernstein, Barbara W.

    2017-01-01

    Cytoskeletal abnormalities and synaptic loss, typical of both familial and sporadic Alzheimer disease (AD), are induced by diverse stresses such as neuroinflammation, oxidative stress, and energetic stress, each of which may be initiated or enhanced by proinflammatory cytokines or amyloid-β (Aβ) peptides. Extracellular Aβ-containing plaques and intracellular phospho-tau-containing neurofibrillary tangles are postmortem pathologies required to confirm AD and have been the focus of most studies. However, AD brain, but not normal brain, also have increased levels of cytoplasmic rod-shaped bundles of filaments composed of ADF/cofilin-actin in a 1:1 complex (rods). Cofilin, the major ADF/cofilin isoform in mammalian neurons, severs actin filaments at low cofilin/actin ratios and stabilizes filaments at high cofilin/actin ratios. It binds cooperatively to ADP-actin subunits in F-actin. Cofilin is activated by dephosphorylation and may be oxidized in stressed neurons to form disulfide-linked dimers, required for bundling cofilin-actin filaments into stable rods. Rods form within neurites causing synaptic dysfunction by sequestering cofilin, disrupting normal actin dynamics, blocking transport, and exacerbating mitochondrial membrane potential loss. Aβ and proinflammatory cytokines induce rods through a cellular prion protein-dependent activation of NADPH oxidase and production of reactive oxygen species. Here we review recent advances in our understanding of cofilin biochemistry, rod formation, and the development of cognitive deficits. We will then discuss rod formation as a molecular pathway for synapse loss that may be common between all three prominent current AD hypotheses, thus making rods an attractive therapeutic target. PMID:26873625

  6. The murine Nck SH2/SH3 adaptors are important for the development of mesoderm-derived embryonic structures and for regulating the cellular actin network.

    PubMed

    Bladt, Friedhelm; Aippersbach, Elke; Gelkop, Sigal; Strasser, Geraldine A; Nash, Piers; Tafuri, Anna; Gertler, Frank B; Pawson, Tony

    2003-07-01

    Mammalian Nck1 and Nck2 are closely related adaptor proteins that possess three SH3 domains, followed by an SH2 domain, and are implicated in coupling phosphotyrosine signals to polypeptides that regulate the actin cytoskeleton. However, the in vivo functions of Nck1 and Nck2 have not been defined. We have mutated the murine Nck1 and Nck2 genes and incorporated beta-galactosidase reporters into the mutant loci. In mouse embryos, the two Nck genes have broad and overlapping expression patterns. They are functionally redundant in the sense that mice deficient for either Nck1 or Nck2 are viable, whereas inactivation of both Nck1 and Nck2 results in profound defects in mesoderm-derived notochord and embryonic lethality at embryonic day 9.5. Fibroblast cell lines derived from Nck1(-/-) Nck2(-/-) embryos have defects in cell motility and in the organization of the lamellipodial actin network. These data suggest that the Nck SH2/SH3 adaptors have important functions in the development of mesodermal structures during embryogenesis, potentially linked to a role in cell movement and cytoskeletal organization.

  7. Quantitative Analysis of Filament Branch Orientation in Listeria Actin Comet Tails.

    PubMed

    Jasnin, Marion; Crevenna, Alvaro H

    2016-02-23

    Several bacterial and viral pathogens hijack the host actin cytoskeleton machinery to facilitate spread and infection. In particular, Listeria uses Arp2/3-mediated actin filament nucleation at the bacterial surface to generate a branched network that will help propel the bacteria. However, the mechanism of force generation remains elusive due to the lack of high-resolution three-dimensional structural data on the spatial organization of the actin mother and daughter (i.e., branch) filaments within this network. Here, we have explored the three-dimensional structure of Listeria actin tails in Xenopus laevis egg extracts using cryo-electron tomography. We found that the architecture of Listeria actin tails is shared between those formed in cells and in cell extracts. Both contained nanoscopic bundles along the plane of the substrate, where the bacterium lies, and upright filaments (also called Z filaments), both oriented tangentially to the bacterial cell wall. Here, we were able to identify actin filament intersections, which likely correspond to branches, within the tails. A quantitative analysis of putative Arp2/3-mediated branches in the actin network showed that mother filaments lie on the plane of the substrate, whereas daughter filaments have random deviations out of this plane. Moreover, the analysis revealed that branches are randomly oriented with respect to the bacterial surface. Therefore, the actin filament network does not push directly toward the surface but rather accumulates, building up stress around the Listeria surface. Our results favor a mechanism of force generation for Listeria movement where the stress is released into propulsive motion.

  8. Quantitative Analysis of Filament Branch Orientation in Listeria Actin Comet Tails

    PubMed Central

    Jasnin, Marion; Crevenna, Alvaro H.

    2016-01-01

    Several bacterial and viral pathogens hijack the host actin cytoskeleton machinery to facilitate spread and infection. In particular, Listeria uses Arp2/3-mediated actin filament nucleation at the bacterial surface to generate a branched network that will help propel the bacteria. However, the mechanism of force generation remains elusive due to the lack of high-resolution three-dimensional structural data on the spatial organization of the actin mother and daughter (i.e., branch) filaments within this network. Here, we have explored the three-dimensional structure of Listeria actin tails in Xenopus laevis egg extracts using cryo-electron tomography. We found that the architecture of Listeria actin tails is shared between those formed in cells and in cell extracts. Both contained nanoscopic bundles along the plane of the substrate, where the bacterium lies, and upright filaments (also called Z filaments), both oriented tangentially to the bacterial cell wall. Here, we were able to identify actin filament intersections, which likely correspond to branches, within the tails. A quantitative analysis of putative Arp2/3-mediated branches in the actin network showed that mother filaments lie on the plane of the substrate, whereas daughter filaments have random deviations out of this plane. Moreover, the analysis revealed that branches are randomly oriented with respect to the bacterial surface. Therefore, the actin filament network does not push directly toward the surface but rather accumulates, building up stress around the Listeria surface. Our results favor a mechanism of force generation for Listeria movement where the stress is released into propulsive motion. PMID:26497103

  9. Structural Differences Explain Diverse Functions of Plasmodium Actins

    PubMed Central

    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

  10. Ectoparasites and endoparasites of fish form networks with different structures.

    PubMed

    Bellay, S; DE Oliveira, E F; Almeida-Neto, M; Mello, M A R; Takemoto, R M; Luque, J L

    2015-06-01

    Hosts and parasites interact with each other in a variety of ways, and this diversity of interactions is reflected in the networks they form. To test for differences in interaction patterns of ecto- and endoparasites we analysed subnetworks formed by each kind of parasites and their host fish species in fish-parasite networks for 22 localities. We assessed the proportion of parasite species per host species, the relationship between parasite fauna composition and host taxonomy, connectance, nestedness and modularity of each subnetwork (n = 44). Furthermore, we evaluated the similarity in host species composition among modules in ecto- and endoparasite subnetworks. We found several differences between subnetworks of fish ecto- and endoparasites. The association with a higher number of host species observed among endoparasites resulted in higher connectance and nestedness, and lower values of modularity in their subnetworks than in those of ectoparasites. Taxonomically related host species tended to share ecto- or endoparasites with the same interaction intensity, but the species composition of hosts tended to differ between modules formed by ecto- and endoparasites. Our results suggest that different evolutionary and ecological processes are responsible for organizing the networks formed by ecto- and endoparasites and fish.

  11. Particle tracking microrheology of gel-forming amyloid fibril networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Corrigan, A. M.; Donald, A. M.

    2009-04-01

    Microrheology is a technique that is increasingly used to investigate the local viscoelastic properties of complex fluids non-invasively, by tracking the motion of micron-sized probe spheres. In this work, passive Particle Tracking Microrheology (PTM) is used to study network formation in the milk protein β -lactoglobulin at 80 ° C and p H 2. In these conditions the protein aggregates to form thread-like structures known as amyloid fibrils, which can further aggregate into elastic networks. Using PTM, gels were observed to form at significantly lower concentrations than determined by bulk rheometry, where the oscillatory shear forces may disrupt either fibril or network formation. During incubation, the Mean Square Displacement (MSD) of the probe particles exhibited time-cure superposition, allowing the critical relaxation exponent to be calculated as ˜ 0.63 , consistent with other biopolymer gels. Combined with the gel-like appearance of the complex modulus at long incubation times, this confirms that a true gel is forming, with physical or chemical crosslinks forming between the fibrils, refining the conclusions of other workers in the field.

  12. Reconstitution of a Minimal Actin Cortex by Coupling Actin Filaments to Reconstituted Membranes.

    PubMed

    Vogel, Sven K

    2016-01-01

    A thin layer of actin filaments in many eukaryotic cell types drives pivotal aspects of cell morphogenesis and is generally cited as the actin cortex. Myosin driven contractility and actin cytoskeleton membrane interactions form the basis of fundamental cellular processes such as cytokinesis, cell migration, and cortical flows. How the interplay between the actin cytoskeleton, the membrane, and actin binding proteins drives these processes is far from being understood. The complexity of the actin cortex in living cells and the hardly feasible manipulation of the omnipotent cellular key players, namely actin, myosin, and the membrane, are challenging in order to gain detailed insights about the underlying mechanisms. Recent progress in developing bottom-up in vitro systems where the actin cytoskeleton is combined with reconstituted membranes may provide a complementary route to reveal general principles underlying actin cortex properties. In this chapter the reconstitution of a minimal actin cortex by coupling actin filaments to a supported membrane is described. This minimal system may be very well suited to study for example protein interactions on membrane bound actin filaments in a very controlled and quantitative manner as it may be difficult to perform in living systems.

  13. Process for forming synapses in neural networks and resistor therefor

    DOEpatents

    Fu, C.Y.

    1996-07-23

    Customizable neural network in which one or more resistors form each synapse is disclosed. All the resistors in the synaptic array are identical, thus simplifying the processing issues. Highly doped, amorphous silicon is used as the resistor material, to create extremely high resistances occupying very small spaces. Connected in series with each resistor in the array is at least one severable conductor whose uppermost layer has a lower reflectivity of laser energy than typical metal conductors at a desired laser wavelength. 5 figs.

  14. Process for forming synapses in neural networks and resistor therefor

    DOEpatents

    Fu, Chi Y.

    1996-01-01

    Customizable neural network in which one or more resistors form each synapse. All the resistors in the synaptic array are identical, thus simplifying the processing issues. Highly doped, amorphous silicon is used as the resistor material, to create extremely high resistances occupying very small spaces. Connected in series with each resistor in the array is at least one severable conductor whose uppermost layer has a lower reflectivity of laser energy than typical metal conductors at a desired laser wavelength.

  15. Laser programmable integrated curcuit for forming synapses in neural networks

    DOEpatents

    Fu, Chi Y.

    1997-01-01

    Customizable neural network in which one or more resistors form each synapse. All the resistors in the synaptic array are identical, thus simplifying the processing issues. Highly doped, amorphous silicon is used as the resistor material, to create extremely high resistances occupying very small spaces. Connected in series with each resistor in the array is at least one severable conductor whose uppermost layer has a lower reflectivity of laser energy than typical metal conductors at a desired laser wavelength.

  16. Laser programmable integrated circuit for forming synapses in neural networks

    DOEpatents

    Fu, C.Y.

    1997-02-11

    Customizable neural network in which one or more resistors form each synapse is disclosed. All the resistors in the synaptic array are identical, thus simplifying the processing issues. Highly doped, amorphous silicon is used as the resistor material, to create extremely high resistances occupying very small spaces. Connected in series with each resistor in the array is at least one severable conductor whose uppermost layer has a lower reflectivity of laser energy than typical metal conductors at a desired laser wavelength. 5 figs.

  17. Actin Age Orchestrates Myosin-5 and Myosin-6 Runlengths

    PubMed Central

    Zimmermann, Dennis; Santos, Alicja; Kovar, David R.; Rock, Ronald S.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Unlike a static and immobile skeleton, the actin cytoskeleton is a highly dynamic network of filamentous actin (F-actin) polymers that continuously turn over. In addition to generating mechanical forces and sensing mechanical deformation, dynamic F-actin networks serve as cellular tracks for myosin motor traffic. However, much of our mechanistic understanding of processive myosins comes from in vitro studies where motility was studied on pre-assembled and artificially stabilized, static F-actin tracks. In this work, we examine the role of actin dynamics in single-molecule myosin motility using assembling F-actin and the two highly processive motors, myosin-5 and myosin-6. These two myosins have distinct functions in the cell and travel in opposite directions along actin filaments [1–3]. Myosin-5 walks towards the barbed ends of F-actin, traveling to sites of actin polymerization at the cell periphery [4]. Myosin-6 walks towards the pointed end of F-actin [5], traveling towards the cell center along older segments of the actin filament. We find that myosin-5 takes 1.3 to 1.5-fold longer runs on ADP•Pi (young) F-actin, while myosin-6 takes 1.7 to 3.6-fold longer runs along ADP (old) F-actin. These results suggest that conformational differences between ADP•Pi and ADP F-actin tailor these myosins to walk farther toward their preferred actin filament end. Taken together, these experiments define a new mechanism by which myosin traffic may sort to different F-actin networks depending on filament age. PMID:26190073

  18. Myosin 1b promotes the formation of post-Golgi carriers by regulating actin assembly and membrane remodelling at the trans-Golgi network.

    PubMed

    Almeida, Claudia G; Yamada, Ayako; Tenza, Danièle; Louvard, Daniel; Raposo, Graça; Coudrier, Evelyne

    2011-06-12

    The function of organelles is intimately associated with rapid changes in membrane shape. By exerting force on membranes, the cytoskeleton and its associated motors have an important role in membrane remodelling. Actin and myosin 1 have been implicated in the invagination of the plasma membrane during endocytosis. However, whether myosin 1 and actin contribute to the membrane deformation that gives rise to the formation of post-Golgi carriers is unknown. Here we report that myosin 1b regulates the actin-dependent post-Golgi traffic of cargo, generates force that controls the assembly of F-actin foci and, together with the actin cytoskeleton, promotes the formation of tubules at the TGN. Our results provide evidence that actin and myosin 1 regulate organelle shape and uncover an important function for myosin 1b in the initiation of post-Golgi carrier formation by regulating actin assembly and remodelling TGN membranes.

  19. GPCRs and actin-cytoskeleton dynamics.

    PubMed

    Vázquez-Victorio, Genaro; González-Espinosa, Claudia; Espinosa-Riquer, Zyanya P; Macías-Silva, Marina

    2016-01-01

    A multitude of physiological processes regulated by G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) signaling are accomplished by the participation of active rearrangements of the cytoskeleton. In general, it is common that a cross talk occurs among networks of microfilaments, microtubules, and intermediate filaments in order to reach specific cell responses. In particular, actin-cytoskeleton dynamics regulate processes such as cell shape, cell division, cell motility, and cell polarization, among others. This chapter describes the current knowledge about the regulation of actin-cytoskeleton dynamic by diverse GPCR signaling pathways, and also includes some protocols combining immunofluorescence and confocal microscopy for the visualization of the different rearrangements of the actin-cytoskeleton. We report how both the S1P-GPCR/G12/13/Rho/ROCK and glucagon-GPCR/Gs/cAMP axes induce differential actin-cytoskeleton rearrangements in epithelial cells. We also show that specific actin-binding molecules, like phalloidin and LifeAct, are very useful to analyze F-actin reorganization by confocal microscopy, and also that both molecules show similar results in fixed cells, whereas the anti-actin antibody is useful to detect both the G- and F-actin, as well as their compartmentalization. Thus, it is highly recommended to utilize different approaches to investigate the regulation of actin dynamics by GPCR signaling, with the aim to get a better picture of the phenomenon under study.

  20. The actin cytoskeleton in endothelial cell phenotypes

    PubMed Central

    Prasain, Nutan; Stevens, Troy

    2009-01-01

    Endothelium forms a semi-permeable barrier that separates blood from the underlying tissue. Barrier function is largely determined by cell-cell and cell-matrix adhesions that define the limits of cell borders. Yet, such cell-cell and cell-matrix tethering is critically reliant upon the nature of adherence within the cell itself. Indeed, the actin cytoskeleton fulfills this essential function, to provide a strong, dynamic intracellular scaffold that organizes integral membrane proteins with the cell’s interior, and responds to environmental cues to orchestrate appropriate cell shape. The actin cytoskeleton is comprised of three distinct, but interrelated structures, including actin cross-linking of spectrin within the membrane skeleton, the cortical actin rim, and actomyosin-based stress fibers. This review addresses each of these actin-based structures, and discusses cellular signals that control the disposition of actin in different endothelial cell phenotypes. PMID:19028505

  1. Bioinformatics study of the mangrove actin genes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Basyuni, M.; Wasilah, M.; Sumardi

    2017-01-01

    This study describes the bioinformatics methods to analyze eight actin genes from mangrove plants on DDBJ/EMBL/GenBank as well as predicted the structure, composition, subcellular localization, similarity, and phylogenetic. The physical and chemical properties of eight mangroves showed variation among the genes. The percentage of the secondary structure of eight mangrove actin genes followed the order of a helix > random coil > extended chain structure for BgActl, KcActl, RsActl, and A. corniculatum Act. In contrast to this observation, the remaining actin genes were random coil > extended chain structure > a helix. This study, therefore, shown the prediction of secondary structure was performed for necessary structural information. The values of chloroplast or signal peptide or mitochondrial target were too small, indicated that no chloroplast or mitochondrial transit peptide or signal peptide of secretion pathway in mangrove actin genes. These results suggested the importance of understanding the diversity and functional of properties of the different amino acids in mangrove actin genes. To clarify the relationship among the mangrove actin gene, a phylogenetic tree was constructed. Three groups of mangrove actin genes were formed, the first group contains B. gymnorrhiza BgAct and R. stylosa RsActl. The second cluster which consists of 5 actin genes the largest group, and the last branch consist of one gene, B. sexagula Act. The present study, therefore, supported the previous results that plant actin genes form distinct clusters in the tree.

  2. A short splice form of Xin-actin binding repeat containing 2 (XIRP2) lacking the Xin repeats is required for maintenance of stereocilia morphology and hearing function.

    PubMed

    Francis, Shimon P; Krey, Jocelyn F; Krystofiak, Evan S; Cui, Runjia; Nanda, Sonali; Xu, Wenhao; Kachar, Bechara; Barr-Gillespie, Peter G; Shin, Jung-Bum

    2015-02-04

    Approximately one-third of known deafness genes encode proteins located in the hair bundle, the sensory hair cell's mechanoreceptive organelle. In previous studies, we used mass spectrometry to characterize the hair bundle's proteome, resulting in the discovery of novel bundle proteins. One such protein is Xin-actin binding repeat containing 2 (XIRP2), an actin-cross-linking protein previously reported to be specifically expressed in striated muscle. Because mutations in other actin-cross-linkers result in hearing loss, we investigated the role of XIRP2 in hearing function. In the inner ear, XIRP2 is specifically expressed in hair cells, colocalizing with actin-rich structures in bundles, the underlying cuticular plate, and the circumferential actin belt. Analysis using peptide mass spectrometry revealed that the bundle harbors a previously uncharacterized XIRP2 splice variant, suggesting XIRP2's role in the hair cell differs significantly from that reported in myocytes. To determine the role of XIRP2 in hearing, we applied clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeat (CRISPR)/Cas9-mediated genome-editing technology to induce targeted mutations into the mouse Xirp2 gene, resulting in the elimination of XIRP2 protein expression in the inner ear. Functional analysis of hearing in the resulting Xirp2-null mice revealed high-frequency hearing loss, and ultrastructural scanning electron microscopy analyses of hair cells demonstrated stereocilia degeneration in these mice. We thus conclude that XIRP2 is required for long-term maintenance of hair cell stereocilia, and that its dysfunction causes hearing loss in the mouse.

  3. Neuronal oscillations form parietal/frontal networks during contour integration.

    PubMed

    Castellano, Marta; Plöchl, Michael; Vicente, Raul; Pipa, Gordon

    2014-01-01

    The ability to integrate visual features into a global coherent percept that can be further categorized and manipulated are fundamental abilities of the neural system. While the processing of visual information involves activation of early visual cortices, the recruitment of parietal and frontal cortices has been shown to be crucial for perceptual processes. Yet is it not clear how both cortical and long-range oscillatory activity leads to the integration of visual features into a coherent percept. Here, we will investigate perceptual grouping through the analysis of a contour categorization task, where the local elements that form contour must be linked into a coherent structure, which is then further processed and manipulated to perform the categorization task. The contour formation in our visual stimulus is a dynamic process where, for the first time, visual perception of contours is disentangled from the onset of visual stimulation or from motor preparation, cognitive processes that until now have been behaviorally attached to perceptual processes. Our main finding is that, while local and long-range synchronization at several frequencies seem to be an ongoing phenomena, categorization of a contour could only be predicted through local oscillatory activity within parietal/frontal sources, which in turn, would synchronize at gamma (>30 Hz) frequency. Simultaneously, fronto-parietal beta (13-30 Hz) phase locking forms a network spanning across neural sources that are not category specific. Both long range networks, i.e., the gamma network that is category specific, and the beta network that is not category specific, are functionally distinct but spatially overlapping. Altogether, we show that a critical mechanism underlying contour categorization involves oscillatory activity within parietal/frontal cortices, as well as its synchronization across distal cortical sites.

  4. The Yeast V159N Actin Mutant Reveals Roles for Actin Dynamics In Vivo

    PubMed Central

    Belmont, Lisa D.; Drubin, David G.

    1998-01-01

    Actin with a Val 159 to Asn mutation (V159N) forms actin filaments that depolymerize slowly because of a failure to undergo a conformational change after inorganic phosphate release. Here we demonstrate that expression of this actin results in reduced actin dynamics in vivo, and we make use of this property to study the roles of rapid actin filament turnover. Yeast strains expressing the V159N mutant (act1-159) as their only source of actin have larger cortical actin patches and more actin cables than wild-type yeast. Rapid actin dynamics are not essential for cortical actin patch motility or establishment of cell polarity. However, fluid phase endocytosis is defective in act1-159 strains. act1-159 is synthetically lethal with cofilin and profilin mutants, supporting the conclusion that mutations in all of these genes impair the polymerization/ depolymerization cycle. In contrast, act1-159 partially suppresses the temperature sensitivity of a tropomyosin mutant, and the loss of cytoplasmic cables seen in fimbrin, Mdm20p, and tropomyosin null mutants, suggesting filament stabilizing functions for these actin-binding proteins. Analysis of the cables in these double-mutant cells supports a role for fimbrin in organizing cytoplasmic cables and for Mdm20p and tropomyosin in excluding cofilin from the cables. PMID:9732289

  5. Morphological changes in liposomes caused by polymerization of encapsulated actin and spontaneous formation of actin bundles.

    PubMed Central

    Miyata, H; Hotani, H

    1992-01-01

    Spherical giant liposomes that had encapsulated skeletal-muscle G-actin were made by swelling a dried lipid mixture of dimyristoyl phosphatidylcholine/cardiolipin, 1:1 (wt/wt), in a solution of G-actin/CaCl2 at 0 degree C. Polymerization of the encapsulated G-actin into actin filaments was achieved by raising the temperature to 30 degrees C. We observed the subsequent shape changes of the liposomes by dark-field and differential interference-contrast light microscopy. After approximately 40 min, which was required for completion of actin polymerization, two shapes of liposome were evident: dumbbell and disk. Elongation of the dumbbell-shaped liposomes was concomitant with actin polymerization. Polarization microscopy showed that actin filaments formed thick bundles in the liposomes and that these filaments lay contiguous to the periphery of the liposome. Localization of actin filaments in the liposomes was confirmed by observation of rhodamine phalloidin-conjugated actin filaments by fluorescence microscopy. Both dumbbell- and disk-shaped liposomes were rigid and kept their shapes as far as actin filaments were stabilized. In contrast, liposomes containing bovine serum albumin were fragile, and their shapes continually fluctuated from Brownian motion, indicating that the actin bundles served as mechanical support for the liposome shapes. Images PMID:1454846

  6. Actin organization in chick embryo fibroblasts after influenza virus infection. I. Isolation and characterization of actin from chick embryo cells.

    PubMed

    Krizanová, O; Závodská, E; Solariková, L; Ciampor, F; Kocisková, D

    1984-05-01

    Comparison of two starting materials for actin purification has shown that preparation of actin from aceton-dried cytoskeleton was more effective than from native chick embryos (CE). The isolated actin formed a single band of Mr = 42-43000 in SDS-PAGE; less purified samples revealed additional faint bands. G form of actin (non-polymerized) inhibited the activity of DNase I, electron microscopy showed actin filaments and bundles formed upon its polymerization. The freshly purified homogeneous actin has not lost its DNase I-inhibiting activity when incubated for 60 min at 35 degrees or 45 degrees C. Older or less purified actin samples kept under similar conditions showed 18-25% decrease of their DNase I-inhibiting activity and a loss of their polymerization ability. Digestion with trypsin caused a decrease of DNase I-inhibiting activity of fresh as well as for older actin samples.

  7. A new F-actin structure in fungi: actin ring formation around the cell nucleus of Cryptococcus neoformans.

    PubMed

    Kopecká, Marie; Kawamoto, Susumu; Yamaguchi, Masashi

    2013-04-01

    The F-actin cytoskeleton of Cryptococcus neoformans is known to comprise actin cables, cortical patches and cytokinetic ring. Here, we describe a new F-actin structure in fungi, a perinuclear F-actin collar ring around the cell nucleus, by fluorescent microscopic imaging of rhodamine phalloidin-stained F-actin. Perinuclear F-actin rings form in Cryptococcus neoformans treated with the microtubule inhibitor Nocodazole or with the drug solvent dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) or grown in yeast extract peptone dextrose (YEPD) medium, but they are absent in cells treated with Latrunculin A. Perinuclear F-actin rings may function as 'funicular cabin' for the cell nucleus, and actin cables as intracellular 'funicular' suspending nucleus in the central position in the cell and moving nucleus along the polarity axis along actin cables.

  8. Crystal structure of a nuclear actin ternary complex.

    PubMed

    Cao, Tingting; Sun, Lingfei; Jiang, Yuxiang; Huang, Shanjin; Wang, Jiawei; Chen, Zhucheng

    2016-08-09

    Actin polymerizes and forms filamentous structures (F-actin) in the cytoplasm of eukaryotic cells. It also exists in the nucleus and regulates various nucleic acid transactions, particularly through its incorporation into multiple chromatin-remodeling complexes. However, the specific structure of actin and the mechanisms that regulate its polymeric nature inside the nucleus remain unknown. Here, we report the crystal structure of nuclear actin (N-actin) complexed with actin-related protein 4 (Arp4) and the helicase-SANT-associated (HSA) domain of the chromatin remodeler Swr1. The inner face and barbed end of N-actin are sequestered by interactions with Arp4 and the HSA domain, respectively, which prevents N-actin from polymerization and binding to many actin regulators. The two major domains of N-actin are more twisted than those of globular actin (G-actin), and its nucleotide-binding pocket is occluded, freeing N-actin from binding to and regulation by ATP. These findings revealed the salient structural features of N-actin that distinguish it from its cytoplasmic counterpart and provide a rational basis for its functions and regulation inside the nucleus.

  9. Crystal structure of a nuclear actin ternary complex

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Tingting; Sun, Lingfei; Jiang, Yuxiang; Huang, Shanjin; Wang, Jiawei; Chen, Zhucheng

    2016-01-01

    Actin polymerizes and forms filamentous structures (F-actin) in the cytoplasm of eukaryotic cells. It also exists in the nucleus and regulates various nucleic acid transactions, particularly through its incorporation into multiple chromatin-remodeling complexes. However, the specific structure of actin and the mechanisms that regulate its polymeric nature inside the nucleus remain unknown. Here, we report the crystal structure of nuclear actin (N-actin) complexed with actin-related protein 4 (Arp4) and the helicase-SANT–associated (HSA) domain of the chromatin remodeler Swr1. The inner face and barbed end of N-actin are sequestered by interactions with Arp4 and the HSA domain, respectively, which prevents N-actin from polymerization and binding to many actin regulators. The two major domains of N-actin are more twisted than those of globular actin (G-actin), and its nucleotide-binding pocket is occluded, freeing N-actin from binding to and regulation by ATP. These findings revealed the salient structural features of N-actin that distinguish it from its cytoplasmic counterpart and provide a rational basis for its functions and regulation inside the nucleus. PMID:27457955

  10. Actin-Regulator Feedback Interactions during Endocytosis

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Xinxin; Galletta, Brian J.; Cooper, John A.; Carlsson, Anders E.

    2016-01-01

    Endocytosis mediated by clathrin, a cellular process by which cells internalize membrane receptors and their extracellular ligands, is an important component of cell signaling regulation. Actin polymerization is involved in endocytosis in varying degrees depending on the cellular context. In yeast, clathrin-mediated endocytosis requires a pulse of polymerized actin and its regulators, which recruit and activate the Arp2/3 complex. In this article, we seek to identify the main protein-protein interactions that 1) cause actin and its regulators to appear in pulses, and 2) determine the effects of key mutations and drug treatments on actin and regulator assembly. We perform a joint modeling/experimental study of actin and regulator dynamics during endocytosis in the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. We treat both a stochastic model that grows an explicit three-dimensional actin network, and a simpler two-variable Fitzhugh-Nagumo type model. The models include a negative-feedback interaction of F-actin onto the Arp2/3 regulators. Both models explain the pulse time courses and the effects of interventions on actin polymerization: the surprising increase in the peak F-actin count caused by reduced regulator branching activity, the increase in F-actin resulting from slowing of actin disassembly, and the increased Arp2/3 regulator lifetime resulting from latrunculin treatment. In addition, they predict that decreases in the regulator branching activity lead to increases in accumulation of regulators, and we confirmed this prediction with experiments on yeast harboring mutations in the Arp2/3 regulators, using quantitative fluorescence microscopy. Our experimental measurements suggest that the regulators act quasi-independently, in the sense that accumulation of a particular regulator is most strongly affected by mutations of that regulator, as opposed to the others. PMID:27028652

  11. Growing an actin gel on spherical surfaces.

    PubMed Central

    Noireaux, V; Golsteyn, R M; Friederich, E; Prost, J; Antony, C; Louvard, D; Sykes, C

    2000-01-01

    Inspired by the motility of the bacteria Listeria monocytogenes, we have experimentally studied the growth of an actin gel around spherical beads grafted with ActA, a protein known to be the promoter of bacteria movement. On ActA-grafted beads F-actin is formed in a spherical manner, whereas on the bacteria a "comet-like" tail of F-actin is produced. We show experimentally that the stationary thickness of the gel depends on the radius of the beads. Moreover, the actin gel is not formed if the ActA surface density is too low. To interpret our results, we propose a theoretical model to explain how the mechanical stress (due to spherical geometry) limits the growth of the actin gel. Our model also takes into account treadmilling of actin. We deduce from our work that the force exerted by the actin gel on the bacteria is of the order of 10 pN. Finally, we estimate from our theoretical model possible conditions for developing actin comet tails. PMID:10692348

  12. Recurrent Network Dynamics; a Link between Form and Motion

    PubMed Central

    Joukes, Jeroen; Yu, Yunguo; Victor, Jonathan D.; Krekelberg, Bart

    2017-01-01

    To discriminate visual features such as corners and contours, the brain must be sensitive to spatial correlations between multiple points in an image. Consistent with this, macaque V2 neurons respond selectively to patterns with well-defined multipoint correlations. Here, we show that a standard feedforward model (a cascade of linear–non-linear filters) does not capture this multipoint selectivity. As an alternative, we developed an artificial neural network model with two hierarchical stages of processing and locally recurrent connectivity. This model faithfully reproduced neurons’ selectivity for multipoint correlations. By probing the model, we gained novel insights into early form processing. First, the diverse selectivity for multipoint correlations and complex response dynamics of the hidden units in the model were surprisingly similar to those observed in V1 and V2. This suggests that both transient and sustained response dynamics may be a vital part of form computations. Second, the model self-organized units with speed and direction selectivity that was correlated with selectivity for multipoint correlations. In other words, the model units that detected multipoint spatial correlations also detected space-time correlations. This leads to the novel hypothesis that higher-order spatial correlations could be computed by the rapid, sequential assessment and comparison of multiple low-order correlations within the receptive field. This computation links spatial and temporal processing and leads to the testable prediction that the analysis of complex form and motion are closely intertwined in early visual cortex. PMID:28360844

  13. Structure and dynamics in network-forming materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilson, Mark

    2016-12-01

    The study of the structure and dynamics of network-forming materials is reviewed. Experimental techniques used to extract key structural information are briefly considered. Strategies for building simulation models, based on both targeting key (experimentally-accessible) materials and on systematically controlling key model parameters, are discussed. As an example of the first class of materials, a key target system, SiO2, is used to highlight how the changing structure with applied pressure can be effectively modelled (in three dimensions) and used to link to both experimental results and simple structural models. As an example of the second class the topology of networks of tetrahedra in the MX2 stoichiometry are controlled using a single model parameter linked to the M-X-M bond angles. The evolution of ordering on multiple length-scales is observed as are the links between the static structure and key dynamical properties. The isomorphous relationship between the structures of amorphous Si and SiO2 is discussed as are the similarities and differences in the phase diagrams, the latter linked to potential polyamorphic and ‘anomalous’ (e.g. density maxima) behaviour. Links to both two-dimensional structures for C, Si and Ge and near-two-dimensional bilayers of SiO2 are discussed. Emerging low-dimensional structures in low temperature molten carbonates are also uncovered.

  14. Structure and dynamics in network-forming materials.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Mark

    2016-12-21

    The study of the structure and dynamics of network-forming materials is reviewed. Experimental techniques used to extract key structural information are briefly considered. Strategies for building simulation models, based on both targeting key (experimentally-accessible) materials and on systematically controlling key model parameters, are discussed. As an example of the first class of materials, a key target system, SiO2, is used to highlight how the changing structure with applied pressure can be effectively modelled (in three dimensions) and used to link to both experimental results and simple structural models. As an example of the second class the topology of networks of tetrahedra in the MX2 stoichiometry are controlled using a single model parameter linked to the M-X-M bond angles. The evolution of ordering on multiple length-scales is observed as are the links between the static structure and key dynamical properties. The isomorphous relationship between the structures of amorphous Si and SiO2 is discussed as are the similarities and differences in the phase diagrams, the latter linked to potential polyamorphic and 'anomalous' (e.g. density maxima) behaviour. Links to both two-dimensional structures for C, Si and Ge and near-two-dimensional bilayers of SiO2 are discussed. Emerging low-dimensional structures in low temperature molten carbonates are also uncovered.

  15. The role of substrate curvature in actin-based pushing forces.

    PubMed

    Schwartz, Ian M; Ehrenberg, Morton; Bindschadler, Michael; McGrath, James L

    2004-06-22

    The extension of the plasma membrane during cell crawling or spreading is known to require actin polymerization; however, the question of how pushing forces derive from actin polymerization remains open. A leading theory (herein referred to as elastic propulsion) illustrates how elastic stresses in networks growing on curved surfaces can result in forces that push particles. To date all examples of reconstituted motility have used curved surfaces, raising the possibility that such squeezing forces are essential for actin-based pushing. By contrast, other theories, such as molecular ratchets, neither require nor consider surface curvature to explain pushing forces. Here, we critically test the requirement of substrate curvature by reconstituting actin-based motility on polystyrene disks. We find that disks move through extracts in a manner that indicates pushing forces on their flat surfaces and that disks typically move faster than the spheres they are manufactured from. For a subset of actin tails that form on the perimeter of disks, we find no correlation between local surface curvature and tail position. Collectively the data indicate that curvature-dependent mechanisms are not required for actin-based pushing.

  16. Distributed actin turnover in the lamellipodium and FRAP kinetics.

    PubMed

    Smith, Matthew B; Kiuchi, Tai; Watanabe, Naoki; Vavylonis, Dimitrios

    2013-01-08

    Studies of actin dynamics at the leading edge of motile cells with single-molecule speckle (SiMS) microscopy have shown a broad distribution of EGFP-actin speckle lifetimes and indicated actin polymerization and depolymerization over an extended region. Other experiments using FRAP with the same EGFP-actin as a probe have suggested, by contrast, that polymerization occurs exclusively at the leading edge. We performed FRAP experiments on XTC cells to compare SiMS to FRAP on the same cell type. We used speckle statistics obtained by SiMS to model the steady-state distribution and kinetics of actin in the lamellipodium. We demonstrate that a model with a single diffuse actin species is in good agreement with FRAP experiments. A model including two species of diffuse actin provides an even better agreement. The second species consists of slowly diffusing oligomers that associate to the F-actin network throughout the lamellipodium or break up into monomers after a characteristic time. Our work motivates studies to test the presence and composition of slowly diffusing actin species that may contribute to local remodeling of the actin network and increase the amount of soluble actin.

  17. Pharmacological characterization of actin-binding (-)-doliculide.

    PubMed

    Foerster, Florian; Braig, Simone; Chen, Tao; Altmann, Karl-Heinz; Vollmar, Angelika M

    2014-09-15

    Natural compounds offer a broad spectrum of potential drug candidates against human malignancies. Several cytostatic drugs, which are in clinical use for decades, derive directly from natural sources or are synthetically optimized derivatives of natural lead structures. An eukaryote target molecule to which many natural derived anti-cancer drugs bind to is the microtubule network. Of similar importance for the cell is the actin cytoskeleton, responsible for cell movements, migration of cells and cytokinesis. Nature provides also a broad range of compounds directed against actin as intracellular target, but none of these actin-targeting compounds has ever been brought to clinical trials. One reason why actin-binding compounds have not yet been considered for further clinical investigations is that little is known about their pharmacological properties in cancer cells. Herein, we focused on the closer characterization of doliculide, an actin binding natural compound of marine origin in the breast cancer cell lines MCF7 and MDA-MB-231. We used fluorescence-recovery-after-photobleaching (FRAP) analysis to determine doliculide's early effects on the actin cytoskeleton and rhodamin-phalloidin staining for long-term effects on the actin CSK. After validating the disruption of the actin network, we further investigated the functional effects of doliculide. Doliculide treatment leads to inhibition of proliferation and impairs the migratory potential. Finally, we could also show that doliculide leads to the induction of apoptosis in both cell lines. Our data for the first time provide a closer characterization of doliculide in breast cancer cells and propagate doliculide for further investigations as lead structure and potential therapeutic option as actin-targeting compound.

  18. Shockwave Absorption using Network-forming Ionic glass

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Jaejun; Yang, Ke; Moore, Jeffrey; Sottos, Nancy; MURI SWED Collaboration

    2015-06-01

    Network-forming ionic glasses composed of di-ammonium cations and citrate anions exhibit significant potential for dissipation of shock wave energy. The long alkyl side chains in the di-ammonium cation form a soft matrix, while the negatively charged heads of anions segregate into hard nanophase domains. Similar to polyurea, which has microphase separation of soft and hard domains, we hypothesize that shock wave dissipation of the ionic glass occurs by bond breaking in the hard domains and/or pressure-induced phase transition. By employing size-tunable alkyl side chains in the cations, we examine the effect of the relative soft domain size on energy dissipation. A series of thin film (ca. 50 μm) ionic glass specimens are subjected to laser-induced compressive stress waves and the transmitted response measured interferometrically. Structural changes of the ionic glass due to shock wave impact are characterized by x-ray diffraction. When compared directly to polyurea films of identical thickness and geometry, the ionic glass showed superior shock-wave mitigating performance. ONR MURI program.

  19. Beam forming networks for mm-wave satellite communications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sharon, T. E.

    1983-01-01

    Technology features of a beam forming network (BFN) employing ferrite devices to provide multiple beam antenna pattern control for satellites used in telecommunications are described. The BFN produces the phase and amplitude distribution for each horn in an antenna array, with the number of horns in the array being equal to the number of outputs in the BFN. One configuration involves microwave switches and permits illumination of a single feed horn at a time using ferrite latching circulators that function by reversing the circulation direction. A more flexible version, yielding a variable amplitude distribution across the feed horn array to accommodate changing traffic patterns or serving a TDMA system, includes the capability of forming nulls in the system with a variable phase shifter in the input ports. The antenna scan angles in phased arrays can be limited to 8 deg from center. Acceptable insertion losses have been demonstrated in BFN with hundreds of ports and switching rates as high as 10 kHz.

  20. Microwave 3D concept for beam forming networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vendier, O.; Drevon, C.; Monfraix, P.

    2002-12-01

    The development of active antennas for space applications has reinforced the need for RF BFNs - Beam Forming Networks. A BFN connects m RF inputs to m RF Outputs to form N independent and simultaneous beams. The resulting matrix has m x n internal connections. Typically, this number runs into the hundreds, which make it impossible to be implemented with a classical concept. Even the technology based on multilayer printed circuit boards is limited in : frequency mainly due to the mechanical accuracy on materials and processes, integration because all the components could be bonded only on the surface of the boards. The new concept presented in this paper is compatible with BFN in the Ka band and upper frequencies. This "vertical" BFN is using the RF 3D technology; in that way the capacity of interconnection is drastically improved because all the routing moved to the surface of the module with all the components encapsulated inside the module. Main of the fundamental technology points are addressed : availability for molding very large modules up to 110 x 110 mm with the capability to keep all the advantages of the 3D technology, a 3D CPW (CoPlanar Waveguide) intercon- nection on a low dielectric constant resin, micro-connectors implemented with surface mount technology and working up to 30 GHz. A test vehicle including all those points is also presented with the first results on the reliability tests mainly based on thermal cycles in the range -55/+125°C.

  1. Beam forming networks for mm-wave satellite communications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharon, T. E.

    1983-08-01

    Technology features of a beam forming network (BFN) employing ferrite devices to provide multiple beam antenna pattern control for satellites used in telecommunications are described. The BFN produces the phase and amplitude distribution for each horn in an antenna array, with the number of horns in the array being equal to the number of outputs in the BFN. One configuration involves microwave switches and permits illumination of a single feed horn at a time using ferrite latching circulators that function by reversing the circulation direction. A more flexible version, yielding a variable amplitude distribution across the feed horn array to accommodate changing traffic patterns or serving a TDMA system, includes the capability of forming nulls in the system with a variable phase shifter in the input ports. The antenna scan angles in phased arrays can be limited to 8 deg from center. Acceptable insertion losses have been demonstrated in BFN with hundreds of ports and switching rates as high as 10 kHz.

  2. Actin cytoskeleton demonstration in Trichomonas vaginalis and in other trichomonads.

    PubMed

    Brugerolle, G; Bricheux, G; Coffe, G

    1996-01-01

    The flagellate form of Trichomonas vaginalis (T v) transforms to amoeboid cells upon adherence to converslips. They grow and their nuclei divide without undergoing cytokinesis, yielding giant cells and a monolayer of T v F-actin was demonstrated in Trichomonas vaginalis by fluorescence microscopy using phalloidin and an anti-actin mAb which labelled the cytoplasm of both the flagellate and amoeboid forms. Comparative electrophoresis and immunoblotting established that the actin band has the same 42 kDa as muscle actin, but 2-D electrophoresis resolved the actin band into four spots; the two major spots observed were superimposable with major muscle actin isoforms. Electron microscopy demonstrated an ectoplasmic microfibrillar layer along the adhesion zone of amoeboid T v adhering to coverslips. Immunogold staining, using anti-actin monoclonal antibodies demonstrated that this layer was mainly composed of actin microfilaments. A comparative immunoblotting study comprising seven trichomonad species showed that all trichomonads studied expressed actin. The mAb Sigma A-4700 specific for an epitope on the actin C-terminal sequence labelled only actin of Trichomonas vaginalis, Tetratrichomonas gallinarum. Trichomitus batrachorum and Hypotrichomonas acosta, but not the actin of Tritrichomonas foetus, Tritrichomonas augusta and Monocercomonas sp. This discrimination between a 'trichomonas branch' and a 'tritrichomonas branch' is congruent with inferred sequence phylogeny from SSu rRNA and with classical phylogeny of trichomonads.

  3. A statistically inferred microRNA network identifies breast cancer target miR-940 as an actin cytoskeleton regulator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhajun, Ricky; Guyon, Laurent; Pitaval, Amandine; Sulpice, Eric; Combe, Stéphanie; Obeid, Patricia; Haguet, Vincent; Ghorbel, Itebeddine; Lajaunie, Christian; Gidrol, Xavier

    2015-02-01

    MiRNAs are key regulators of gene expression. By binding to many genes, they create a complex network of gene co-regulation. Here, using a network-based approach, we identified miRNA hub groups by their close connections and common targets. In one cluster containing three miRNAs, miR-612, miR-661 and miR-940, the annotated functions of the co-regulated genes suggested a role in small GTPase signalling. Although the three members of this cluster targeted the same subset of predicted genes, we showed that their overexpression impacted cell fates differently. miR-661 demonstrated enhanced phosphorylation of myosin II and an increase in cell invasion, indicating a possible oncogenic miRNA. On the contrary, miR-612 and miR-940 inhibit phosphorylation of myosin II and cell invasion. Finally, expression profiling in human breast tissues showed that miR-940 was consistently downregulated in breast cancer tissues

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-03-04

    The assembly of protein filaments drives many cellular processes, from nucleoid segregation, growth, and division in single cells to muscle contraction in animals. In eukaryotes, shape and motility are regulated through cycles of polymerization and depolymerization of actin cytoskeletal networks. In bacteria, the actin homolog MreB forms filaments that coordinate the cell-wall synthesis machinery to regulate rod-shaped growth and contribute to cellular stiffness through unknown mechanisms. Like actin, MreB is an ATPase and requires ATP to polymerize, and polymerization promotes nucleotide hydrolysis. However, it is unclear whether other similarities exist between MreB and actin because the two proteins share low sequence identity and have distinct cellular roles. Here, we use all-atom molecular dynamics simulations to reveal surprising parallels between MreB and actin structural dynamics. We observe that MreB exhibits actin-like polymerization-dependent structural changes, wherein polymerization induces flattening of MreB subunits, which restructures the nucleotide-binding pocket to favor hydrolysis. MreB filaments exhibited nucleotide-dependent intersubunit bending, with hydrolyzed polymers favoring a straighter conformation. We use steered simulations to demonstrate a coupling between intersubunit bending and the degree of flattening of each subunit, suggesting cooperative bending along a filament. Taken together, our results provide molecular-scale insight into the diversity of structural states of MreB and the relationships among polymerization, hydrolysis, and filament properties, which may be applicable to other members of the broad actin family.

  5. Confinement induces actin flow in a meiotic cytoplasm

    PubMed Central

    Pinot, Mathieu; Steiner, Villier; Dehapiot, Benoit; Yoo, Byung-Kuk; Chesnel, Franck; Blanchoin, Laurent; Kervrann, Charles; Gueroui, Zoher

    2012-01-01

    In vivo, F-actin flows are observed at different cell life stages and participate in various developmental processes during asymmetric divisions in vertebrate oocytes, cell migration, or wound healing. Here, we show that confinement has a dramatic effect on F-actin spatiotemporal organization. We reconstitute in vitro the spontaneous generation of F-actin flow using Xenopus meiotic extracts artificially confined within a geometry mimicking the cell boundary. Perturbations of actin polymerization kinetics or F-actin nucleation sites strongly modify the network flow dynamics. A combination of quantitative image analysis and biochemical perturbations shows that both spatial localization of F-actin nucleators and actin turnover play a decisive role in generating flow. Interestingly, our in vitro assay recapitulates several symmetry-breaking processes observed in oocytes and early embryonic cells. PMID:22753521

  6. Time-resolved studies of actin organization by multivalent ions and actin-binding proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hwee Lai, Ghee; Purdy, Kirstin; Bartles, James R.; Chee Lai Wong, Gerard

    2007-03-01

    Actin is one of the principal components in the eukaryotic cytoskeleton, the architecture of which is highly regulated for a wide range of biological functions. In the presence of multivalent salts or actin-binding proteins, it is known that F-actin can organize into bundles or networks. In this work, we use time-resolved confocal microscopy to study the dynamics of actin bundle growth induced by multivalent ions and by espin, a prototypical actin binding protein that is known to induce bundles. For divalent ion induced bundles, we observe a rapid lateral saturation followed by longitudinal growth of bundles, in sharp contrast to the bundling mechanism of espin, which favors finite length bundles.

  7. Cross-linking study on skeletal muscle actin: properties of suberimidate-treated actin.

    PubMed

    Ohara, O; Takahashi, S; Ooi, T; Fujiyoshi, Y

    1982-06-01

    Cross-linking experiments were performed on muscle skeletal actin, using imidoesters of various chain lengths. Chemical analyses on all products except one (derived from succinimidate) show evidence of the presence of intramolecular cross-links in the molecule. The detailed properties of suberimidate-treated actin (SA) are as follows: SA contains nearly 1 mol of intramolecular cross-link per mol of actin and less than 15% of intermolecularly cross-linked products. Even at a low salt concentration, SA is polymeric, exchanges slowly its bound nucleotide with free nucleotides in solution, and shows an F-actin-type CD spectrum. Electron micrographs of SA reveal that SA exists actually as fibrous polymers in solutions of low ionic strength, although the fibers seem to be less rigid than those at high salt concentration. The F-form of SA at a high salt concentration is indistinguishable from intact F-actin. SA can bind heavy meromyosin and activate the ATPase of heavy meromyosin as observed for intact F-actin. Tropomyosin binds SA only at a high salt concentration. These results show that SA possesses the properties of F-actin even in media of low salt concentration, which are favorable for depolymerization of F-actin. Thus, we may infer that the conformation of SA is frozen in the F-state of actin by the introduction of intramolecular cross-links in the protein.

  8. Geometrical and Mechanical Properties Control Actin Filament Organization

    PubMed Central

    Ennomani, Hajer; Théry, Manuel; Nedelec, Francois; Blanchoin, Laurent

    2015-01-01

    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. PMID:26016478

  9. Geometrical and mechanical properties control actin filament organization.

    PubMed

    Letort, Gaëlle; Politi, Antonio Z; Ennomani, Hajer; Théry, Manuel; Nedelec, Francois; Blanchoin, Laurent

    2015-05-01

    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.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  12. Thymosin beta4: actin regulation and more.

    PubMed

    Yarmola, Elena G; Klimenko, Evguenia S; Fujita, Go; Bubb, Michael R

    2007-09-01

    The intracellular function of thymosin beta(4) is not limited to simple sequestration of globular actin. Our recent studies revealed that thymosin beta(4) affects actin critical concentration and forms a ternary complex with actin and profilin. The consequences of this complex formation can be very significant. Our new data demonstrate that it is likely that profilin affects binding of thymosin beta(4) to actin in the ternary complex through allosteric changes in actin rather than through competition for the binding site. The N- and C-terminal thymosin beta(4) helices are known to be unstructured in aqueous solution and to adopt helical conformation in organic solvents or upon binding to actin. Osmolytes stabilize protein structure, and TMAO (trimethylamine N-oxide) specifically stabilizes hydrogen bonds. This increases affinity of intact thymosin beta(4) to actin significantly, but the increase is much less for thymosin beta(4) sulfoxide. Our data show that oxidation does not alter binding of profilin to form a ternary complex, and therefore it is very likely that there is no direct steric interference by methionine 6 of thymosin beta(4). Rather, since TMAO has little effect on thymosin beta(4) sulfoxide, this observation is consistent with the hypothesis that methionine oxidation prevents helix transition. The experiment with truncated versions of thymosin beta(4) also supports this hypothesis. Oxidation and formation of the helices are important for both intra- and extracellular properties of thymosin beta(4). We found that actin and, in lesser extent, profilin-actin complex protect thymosin beta(4) from oxidation.

  13. Apical domain polarization localizes actin-myosin activity to drive ratchet-like apical constriction.

    PubMed

    Mason, Frank M; Tworoger, Michael; Martin, Adam C

    2013-08-01

    Apical constriction promotes epithelia folding, which changes tissue architecture. During Drosophila gastrulation, mesoderm cells exhibit repeated contractile pulses that are stabilized such that cells apically constrict like a ratchet. The transcription factor Twist is required to stabilize cell shape. However, it is unknown how Twist spatially coordinates downstream signals to prevent cell relaxation. We find that during constriction, Rho-associated kinase (Rok) is polarized to the middle of the apical domain (medioapical cortex), separate from adherens junctions. Rok recruits or stabilizes medioapical myosin II (Myo-II), which contracts dynamic medioapical actin cables. The formin Diaphanous mediates apical actin assembly to suppress medioapical E-cadherin localization and form stable connections between the medioapical contractile network and adherens junctions. Twist is not required for apical Rok recruitment, but instead polarizes Rok medioapically. Therefore, Twist establishes radial cell polarity of Rok/Myo-II and E-cadherin and promotes medioapical actin assembly in mesoderm cells to stabilize cell shape fluctuations.

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

    PubMed Central

    Hong, Nan Hyung; Qi, Aidong

    2015-01-01

    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. PMID:26323691

  15. Modified Blumlein pulse-forming networks for bioelectrical applications.

    PubMed

    Romeo, Stefania; Sarti, Maurizio; Scarfì, Maria Rosaria; Zeni, Luigi

    2010-07-01

    Intense nanosecond pulsed electric fields (nsPEFs) have been shown to induce, on intracellular structures, interesting effects dependent on electrical exposure conditions (pulse length and amplitude, repetition frequency and number of pulses), which are known in the literature as "bioelectrical effects" (Schoenbach et al., IEEE Trans Plasma Sci 30:293-300, 2002). In particular, pulses with a shorter width than the plasma membrane charging time constant (about 100 ns for mammalian cells) can penetrate the cell and trigger effects such as permeabilization of intracellular membranes, release of Ca(2+) and apoptosis induction. Moreover, the observed effects have led to exploration of medical applications, like the treatment of melanoma tumors (Nuccitelli et al., Biochem Biophys Res Commun 343:351-360, 2006). Pulsed electric fields allowing such effects usually range from several tens to a few hundred nanoseconds in duration and from a few to several tens of megavolts per meter in amplitude (Schoenbach et al., IEEE Trans Diel Elec Insul 14:1088-1109, 2007); however, the biological effects of subnanosecond pulses have been also investigated (Schoenbach et al., IEEE Trans Plasma Sci 36:414-422, 2008). The use of such a large variety of pulse parameters suggests that highly flexible pulse-generating systems, able to deliver wide ranges of pulse durations and amplitudes, are strongly required in order to explore effects and applications related to different exposure conditions. The Blumlein pulse-forming network is an often-employed circuit topology for the generation of high-voltage electric pulses with fixed pulse duration. An innovative modification to the Blumlein circuit has been recently devised which allows generation of pulses with variable amplitude, duration and polarity. Two different modified Blumlein pulse-generating systems are presented in this article, the first based on a coaxial cable configuration, matching microscopic slides as a pulse-delivery system

  16. Actin from pig and rat uterus.

    PubMed Central

    Elce, J S; Elbrecht, A S; Middlestadt, M U; McIntyre, E J; Anderson, P J

    1981-01-01

    Smooth-muscle actin was isolated from pig uterus and from pregnant-rat uterus. Methods involving acetone-dried powders were unsuccessful, and a column-chromatographic procedure was developed, with proteinase inhibitors and avoiding polymerization as a purification step. The yield of pure actin was 0.8--1.5 mg/g wet wt. of uterus, which should be compared with an expected yield of actin from skeletal muscle of 2--4 mg/g wet wt. The actin was pure as judged by sodium dodecyl sulphate/polyacrylamide-gel electrophoresis, and exhibited alpha-, beta-, and gamma-forms on isoelectric focusing. It possessed a blocked N-terminal amino acid residue, and its amino acid analysis conformed to those of other actins. The rat uterine actin was available only in small amounts (5--10 mg) and did not polymerize. The pig uterine actin could be obtained in amounts up to 30 mg, polymerized reversibly, and activated a skeletal myosin Mg2+-dependent ATPase. Images Fig. 2. Fig. 4. PMID:6458278

  17. Chemotaxis and Actin Oscillations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bodenschatz, Eberhard; Hsu, Hsin-Fang; Negrete, Jose; Beta, Carsten; Pumir, Alain; Gholami, Azam; Tarantola, Marco; Westendorf, Christian; Zykov, Vladimir

    Recently, self-oscillations of the cytoskeletal actin have been observed in Dictyostelium, a model system for studying chemotaxis. Here we report experimental results on the self-oscillation mechanism and the role of regulatory proteins and myosin II. We stimulate cells rapidly and periodically by using photo un-caging of the chemoattractant in a micro-fluidic device and measured the cellular responses. We found that the response amplitude grows with stimulation strength only in a very narrow region of stimulation, after which the response amplitude reaches a plateau. Moreover, the frequency-response is not constant but rather varies with the strength of external stimuli. To understand the underlying mechanism, we analyzed the polymerization and de-polymerization time in the single cell level. Despite of the large cell-to-cell variability, we found that the polymerization time is independent of external stimuli and the de-polymerization time is prolonged as the stimulation strength increases. Our conclusions will be summarized and the role of noise in the signaling network will be discussed. German Science Foundation CRC 937.

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    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.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  20. An Integrated Architecture to Support Hastily Formed Network (HFN)

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2007-12-01

    Figure 8. EU 1000I, EU 2000I and EU 3000IS...............................................................52 Figure 9. Inmarsat BGAN Satellite Coverage...Hughes 9201 Broadband Satellite IP Terminal with Wireless LAN Access Point, which interfaces over the Inmarsat BGAN satellite network, has many...advantages that make it an attractive solution. (1) Global Coverage BGAN delivers seamless network coverage across most of the world’s land mass

  1. F-actin cytoskeleton and the fate of organelles in chromaffin cells.

    PubMed

    Villanueva, José; Gimenez-Molina, Yolanda; Viniegra, Salvador; Gutiérrez, Luis M

    2016-06-01

    In addition to playing a fundamental structural role, the F-actin cytoskeleton in neuroendocrine chromaffin cells has a prominent influence on governing the molecular mechanism and regulating the secretory process. Performing such roles, the F-actin network might be essential to first transport, and later locate the cellular organelles participating in the secretory cycle. Chromaffin granules are transported from the internal cytosolic regions to the cell periphery along microtubular and F-actin structures. Once in the cortical region, they are embedded in the F-actin network where these vesicles experience restrictions in motility. Similarly, mitochondria transport is affected by both microtubule and F-actin inhibitors and suffers increasing motion restrictions when they are located in the cortical region. Therefore, the F-actin cortex is a key factor in defining the existence of two populations of cortical and perinuclear granules and mitochondria which could be distinguished by their different location and mobility. Interestingly, other important organelles for controlling intracellular calcium levels, such as the endoplasmic reticulum network, present clear differences in distribution and much lower mobility than chromaffin vesicles and mitochondria. Nevertheless, both mitochondria and the endoplasmic reticulum appear to distribute in the proximity of secretory sites to fulfill a pivotal role, forming triads with calcium channels ensuring the fine tuning of the secretory response. This review presents the contributions that provide the basis for our current view regarding the influence that F-actin has on the distribution of organelles participating in the release of catecholamines in chromaffin cells, and summarizes this knowledge in simple models. In chromaffin cells, organelles such as granules and mitochondria distribute forming cortical and perinuclear populations whereas others like the ER present homogenous distributions. In the present review we discuss

  2. Mechanics model for actin-based motility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Yuan

    2009-02-01

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

  3. Mechanics model for actin-based motility.

    PubMed

    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.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-09-08

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

  5. Actin polymerization-dependent activation of Cas-L promotes immunological synapse stability

    PubMed Central

    Santos, Luís C; Blair, David A; Kumari, Sudha; Cammer, Michael; Iskratsch, Thomas; Herbin, Olivier; Alexandropoulos, Konstantina; Dustin, Michael L; Sheetz, Michael P

    2016-01-01

    The immunological synapse formed between a T-cell and an antigen-presenting cell is important for cell–cell communication during T-cell-mediated immune responses. Immunological synapse formation begins with stimulation of the T-cell receptor (TCR). TCR microclusters are assembled and transported to the center of the immunological synapse in an actin polymerization-dependent process. However, the physical link between TCR and actin remains elusive. Here we show that lymphocyte-specific Crk-associated substrate (Cas-L), a member of a force sensing protein family, is required for transport of TCR microclusters and for establishing synapse stability. We found that Cas-L is phosphorylated at TCR microclusters in an actin polymerization-dependent fashion. Furthermore, Cas-L participates in a positive feedback loop leading to amplification of Ca2+ signaling, inside–out integrin activation, and actomyosin contraction. We propose a new role for Cas-L in T-cell activation as a mechanical transducer linking TCR microclusters to the underlying actin network and coordinating multiple actin-dependent structures in the immunological synapse. Our studies highlight the importance of mechanotransduction processes in T-cell-mediated immune responses. PMID:27359298

  6. The evolution of the actin binding NET superfamily

    PubMed Central

    Hawkins, Timothy J.; Deeks, Michael J.; Wang, Pengwei; Hussey, Patrick J.

    2014-01-01

    The Arabidopsis Networked (NET) superfamily are plant-specific actin binding proteins which specifically label different membrane compartments and identify specialized sites of interaction between actin and membranes unique to plants. There are 13 members of the superfamily in Arabidopsis, which group into four distinct clades or families. NET homologs are absent from the genomes of metazoa and fungi; furthermore, in plantae, NET sequences are also absent from the genome of mosses and more ancient extant plant clades. A single family of the NET proteins is found encoded in the club moss genome, an extant species of the earliest vascular plants. Gymnosperms have examples from families 4 and 3, with a hybrid form of NET1 and 2 which shows characteristics of both NET1 and NET2. In addition to NET3 and 4 families, the NET1 and pollen-expressed NET2 families are found only as independent sequences in Angiosperms. This is consistent with the divergence of reproductive actin. The four families are conserved across Monocots and Eudicots, with the numbers of members of each clade expanding at this point, due, in part, to regions of genome duplication. Since the emergence of the NET superfamily at the dawn of vascular plants, they have continued to develop and diversify in a manner which has mirrored the divergence and increasing complexity of land-plant species. PMID:24926301

  7. The evolution of the actin binding NET superfamily.

    PubMed

    Hawkins, Timothy J; Deeks, Michael J; Wang, Pengwei; Hussey, Patrick J

    2014-01-01

    The Arabidopsis Networked (NET) superfamily are plant-specific actin binding proteins which specifically label different membrane compartments and identify specialized sites of interaction between actin and membranes unique to plants. There are 13 members of the superfamily in Arabidopsis, which group into four distinct clades or families. NET homologs are absent from the genomes of metazoa and fungi; furthermore, in plantae, NET sequences are also absent from the genome of mosses and more ancient extant plant clades. A single family of the NET proteins is found encoded in the club moss genome, an extant species of the earliest vascular plants. Gymnosperms have examples from families 4 and 3, with a hybrid form of NET1 and 2 which shows characteristics of both NET1 and NET2. In addition to NET3 and 4 families, the NET1 and pollen-expressed NET2 families are found only as independent sequences in Angiosperms. This is consistent with the divergence of reproductive actin. The four families are conserved across Monocots and Eudicots, with the numbers of members of each clade expanding at this point, due, in part, to regions of genome duplication. Since the emergence of the NET superfamily at the dawn of vascular plants, they have continued to develop and diversify in a manner which has mirrored the divergence and increasing complexity of land-plant species.

  8. Synaptopodin-2 induces assembly of peripheral actin bundles and immature focal adhesions to promote lamellipodia formation and prostate cancer cell migration

    PubMed Central

    Kai, FuiBoon; Fawcett, James P.; Duncan, Roy

    2015-01-01

    Synaptopodin-2 (Synpo2), an actin-binding protein and invasive cancer biomarker, induces formation of complex stress fiber networks in the cell body and promotes PC3 prostate cancer cell migration in response to serum stimulation. The role of these actin networks in enhanced cancer cell migration is unknown. Using time-course analysis and live cell imaging of mock- and Synpo2-transduced PC3 cells, we now show that Synpo2 induces assembly of actin fibers near the cell periphery and Arp2/3-dependent lamellipodia formation. Lamellipodia formed in a non-directional manner or repeatedly changed direction, explaining the enhanced chemokinetic activity of PC3 cells in response to serum stimulation. Myosin contraction promotes retrograde flow of the Synpo2-associated actin filaments at the leading edge and their merger with actin networks in the cell body. Enhanced PC3 cell migration correlates with Synpo2-induced formation of lamellipodia and immature focal adhesions (FAs), but is not dependent on myosin contraction or FA maturation. The previously reported correlation between Synpo2-induced stress fiber assembly and enhanced PC3 cell migration therefore reflects the role of Synpo2 as a newly identified regulator of actin bundle formation and nascent FA assembly near the leading cell edge. PMID:25883213

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2000-01-01

    The red cell's spectrin-actin network is known to sustain local states of shear, dilation, and condensation, and yet the short actin filaments are found to maintain membrane-tangent and near-random azimuthal orientations. When calibrated with polarization results for single actin filaments, imaging of micropipette-deformed red cell ghosts has allowed an assessment of actin orientations and possible reorientations in the network. At the hemispherical cap of the aspirated projection, where the network can be dilated severalfold, filaments have the same membrane-tangent orientation as on a relatively unstrained portion of membrane. Likewise, over the length of the network projection pulled into the micropipette, where the network is strongly sheared in axial extension and circumferential contraction, actin maintains its tangent orientation and is only very weakly aligned with network extension. Similar results are found for the integral membrane protein Band 3. Allowing for thermal fluctuations, we deduce a bound for the effective coupling constant, alpha, between network shear and azimuthal orientation of the protofilament. The finding that alpha must be about an order of magnitude or more below its tight-coupling value illustrates how nanostructural kinematics can decouple from more macroscopic responses. Monte Carlo simulations of spectrin-actin networks at approximately 10-nm resolution further support this conclusion and substantiate an image of protofilaments as elements of a high-temperature spin glass. PMID:11106606

  10. Regulation of myosin II activity by actin architecture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weirich, Kimberly; Stam, Samantha; McCall, Patrick; Munro, Edwin; Gardel, Margaret

    2015-03-01

    Networks of actin filaments containing myosin II motors generate forces and motions that promote biological processes such as cell division, motility, and cargo transport. In cells, actin filaments are arranged in various structures from disordered meshworks to tight bundles. Clusters of myosin II motors, known as myosin filaments, crosslink and generate force on neighboring actin filaments. We hypothesized that the local actin architecture controls the magnitude and duration of force generated by myosin II motors. We used fluorescence imaging to directly measure the mobility of myosin II filaments on actin networks and bundles with varying actin filament polarity, orientation, spacing, and length. On unipolar bundles, myosin exhibits fast, unidirectional motion consistent with their unloaded gliding speed. On mixed polarity bundles, myosin speed is reduced by one order of magnitude and marked by direction switching and trapping. Increasing filament spacing and bundle flexibility reduces the duration of trapping and enhances the mobility of motors. Simulations indicate that stable trapping is a signature of large generated forces while increased mobility indicates force release. Our data underscore that the efficiency of force generation by myosin motors in an actin network depends sensitively on its architecture and suggests actin crosslinking proteins are tuned to optimize actomyosin contractility.

  11. Axonal actin in action: Imaging actin dynamics in neurons.

    PubMed

    Ladt, Kelsey; Ganguly, Archan; Roy, Subhojit

    2016-01-01

    Actin is a highly conserved, key cytoskeletal protein involved in numerous structural and functional roles. In neurons, actin has been intensively investigated in axon terminals-growth cones-and dendritic spines, but details about actin structure and dynamics in axon shafts have remained obscure for decades. A major barrier in the field has been imaging actin. Actin exists as soluble monomers (G-actin) as well as actin filaments (F-actin), and labeling actin with conventional fluorescent probes like GFP/RFP typically leads to a diffuse haze that makes it difficult to discern kinetic behaviors. In a recent publication, we used F-actin selective probes to visualize actin dynamics in axons, resolving striking actin behaviors that have not been described before. However, using these probes to visualize actin dynamics is challenging as they can cause bundling of actin filaments; thus, experimental parameters need to be strictly optimized. Here we describe some practical methodological details related to using these probes for visualizing F-actin dynamics in axons.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  13. Fractal and Small-World Networks Formed by Self-Organized Critical Dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Watanabe, Akitomo; Mizutaka, Shogo; Yakubo, Kousuke

    2015-11-01

    We propose a dynamical model in which a network structure evolves in a self-organized critical (SOC) manner and explain a possible origin of the emergence of fractal and small-world networks. Our model combines a network growth and its decay by failures of nodes. The decay mechanism reflects the instability of large functional networks against cascading overload failures. It is demonstrated that the dynamical system surely exhibits SOC characteristics, such as power-law forms of the avalanche size distribution, the cluster size distribution, and the distribution of the time interval between intermittent avalanches. During the network evolution, fractal networks are spontaneously generated when networks experience critical cascades of failures that lead to a percolation transition. In contrast, networks far from criticality have small-world structures. We also observe the crossover behavior from fractal to small-world structure in the network evolution.

  14. Capillary suspensions: Particle networks formed through the capillary force

    PubMed Central

    Koos, Erin

    2014-01-01

    The addition of small amounts of a secondary fluid to a suspension can, through the attractive capillary force, lead to particle bridging and network formation. The capillary bridging phenomenon can be used to stabilize particle suspensions and precisely tune their rheological properties. This effect can even occur when the secondary fluid wets the particles less well than the bulk fluid. These materials, so-called capillary suspensions, have been the subject of recent research studying the mechanism for network formation, the properties of these suspensions, and how the material properties can be modified. Recent work in colloidal clusters is summarized and the relationship to capillary suspensions is discussed. Capillary suspensions can also be used as a pathway for new material design and some of these applications are highlighted. Results obtained to date are summarized and central questions that remain to be answered are proposed in this review. PMID:25729316

  15. Linear induction accelerator and pulse forming networks therefor

    DOEpatents

    Buttram, Malcolm T.; Ginn, Jerry W.

    1989-01-01

    A linear induction accelerator includes a plurality of adder cavities arranged in a series and provided in a structure which is evacuated so that a vacuum inductance is provided between each adder cavity and the structure. An energy storage system for the adder cavities includes a pulsed current source and a respective plurality of bipolar converting networks connected thereto. The bipolar high-voltage, high-repetition-rate square pulse train sets and resets the cavities.

  16. Preliminary Results form the Japanese Total Lightning Network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hobara, Y.; Ishii, H.; Kumagai, Y.; Liu, C.; Heckman, S.; Price, C. G.; Williams, E. R.

    2015-12-01

    We report on the initial observational results from the first Japanese Total Lightning Detection Network (JTLN) in relation to severe weather phenomena. The University of Electro-Communications (UEC) has deployed the Earth Networks (EN) Total Lightning System over Japan to carry out research on the relationship between thunderstorm activity and severe weather phenomena since 2013. In this paper we first demonstrate the current status of our new network followed by the initial scientific results. The lightning jump algorithm was applied to our total lightning data to study the relationship between total lighting activity and hazardous weather events such as gust fronts and tornadoes over land reported by the JMA (Japanese Meteorological Agency) in 2014. As a result, a clear increase in total lighting flash rate as well as lightning jumps are observed prior to most hazardous weather events (~20 min) indicating potential usefulness for early warning in Japan. Furthermore we are going to demonstrate the relationship of total lightning activities with meteorological radar data focusing particularly on Japanese Tornadic storms.

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

    PubMed

    Holzinger, Andreas; Blaas, Kathrin

    2016-01-01

    This chapter gives 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 and 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 anticancer 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.

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

    PubMed Central

    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

  19. Cystic Mass on Right Atrium of Unusual Form of Chiari's Network: A Case Report.

    PubMed

    Bae, Chi-Hoon; Kwon, Oh-Choon; Lee, Sub; Lee, Chul Ho; Cho, Jun Woo

    2012-08-01

    Chiari's networks are present in 1.5% to 4% of the population. They are a congenital disease characterized by a remnant of the right valve of sinus venosus and rarely have clinical significance. Chiari's network, as the name implies, has network-like shape, but there are other forms of appearance. We have experienced a case of a 60-year-old woman who had a cystic mass on the right atrium. Surgical treatment was performed forthe mass removal and differential diagnosis of the mass. There was no evidence of other tumor, but Chiari's network. As cystic form of Chiari's network have not been reported before, it is the first report of cystic form of Chiari's network.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  1. Myosin II filament assemblies in the active lamella of fibroblasts: their morphogenesis and role in the formation of actin filament bundles

    PubMed Central

    1995-01-01

    The morphogenesis of myosin II structures in active lamella undergoing net protrusion was analyzed by correlative fluorescence and electron microscopy. In rat embryo fibroblasts (REF 52) microinjected with tetramethylrhodamine-myosin II, nascent myosin spots formed close to the active edge during periods of retraction and then elongated into wavy ribbons of uniform width. The spots and ribbons initially behaved as distinct structural entities but subsequently aligned with each other in a sarcomeric-like pattern. Electron microscopy established that the spots and ribbons consisted of bipolar minifilaments associated with each other at their head-containing ends and arranged in a single row in an "open" zig-zag conformation or as a "closed" parallel stack. Ribbons also contacted each other in a nonsarcomeric, network-like arrangement as described previously (Verkhovsky and Borisy, 1993. J. Cell Biol. 123:637-652). Myosin ribbons were particularly pronounced in REF 52 cells, but small ribbons and networks were found also in a range of other mammalian cells. At the edge of the cell, individual spots and open ribbons were associated with relatively disordered actin filaments. Further from the edge, myosin filament alignment increased in parallel with the development of actin bundles. In actin bundles, the actin cross-linking protein, alpha-actinin, was excluded from sites of myosin localization but concentrated in paired sites flanking each myosin ribbon, suggesting that myosin filament association may initiate a pathway for the formation of actin filament bundles. We propose that zig-zag assemblies of myosin II filaments induce the formation of actin bundles by pulling on an actin filament network and that co-alignment of actin and myosin filaments proceeds via folding of myosin II filament assemblies in an accordion-like fashion. PMID:7490299

  2. Unconventional actins and actin-binding proteins in human protozoan parasites.

    PubMed

    Gupta, C M; Thiyagarajan, S; Sahasrabuddhe, A A

    2015-06-01

    Actin and its regulatory proteins play a key role in several essential cellular processes such as cell movement, intracellular trafficking and cytokinesis in most eukaryotes. While these proteins are highly conserved in higher eukaryotes, a number of unicellular eukaryotic organisms contain divergent forms of these proteins which have highly unusual biochemical and structural properties. Here, we review the biochemical and structural properties of these unconventional actins and their core binding proteins which are present in commonly occurring human protozoan parasites.

  3. Actin-binding proteins sensitively mediate F-actin bundle stiffness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Claessens, Mireille M. A. E.; Bathe, Mark; Frey, Erwin; Bausch, Andreas R.

    2006-09-01

    Bundles of filamentous actin (F-actin) form primary structural components of a broad range of cytoskeletal processes including filopodia, sensory hair cell bristles and microvilli. Actin-binding proteins (ABPs) allow the cell to tailor the dimensions and mechanical properties of the bundles to suit specific biological functions. Therefore, it is important to obtain quantitative knowledge on the effect of ABPs on the mechanical properties of F-actin bundles. Here we measure the bending stiffness of F-actin bundles crosslinked by three ABPs that are ubiquitous in eukaryotes. We observe distinct regimes of bundle bending stiffness that differ by orders of magnitude depending on ABP type, concentration and bundle size. The behaviour observed experimentally is reproduced quantitatively by a molecular-based mechanical model in which ABP shearing competes with F-actin extension/compression. Our results shed new light on the biomechanical function of ABPs and demonstrate how single-molecule properties determine mesoscopic behaviour. The bending mechanics of F-actin fibre bundles are general and have implications for cytoskeletal mechanics and for the rational design of functional materials.

  4. Multiple crystal structures of actin dimers and their implications for interactions in the actin filament

    PubMed Central

    Sawaya, Michael R.; Kudryashov, D. S.; Pashkov, Inna; Adisetiyo, Helty; Reisler, Emil; Yeates, Todd O.

    2008-01-01

    The structure of actin in its monomeric form is known at high resolution, while the structure of filamentous F-actin is only understood at considerably lower resolution. Knowing pre­cisely how the monomers of actin fit together would lead to a deeper understanding of the dynamic behavior of the actin filament. Here, a series of crystal structures of actin dimers are reported which were prepared by cross-linking in either the longitudinal or the lateral direction in the filament state. Laterally cross-linked dimers, comprised of monomers belonging to different protofilaments, are found to adopt configurations in crystals that are not related to the native structure of filamentous actin. In contrast, multiple structures of longitudinal dimers consistently reveal the same interface between monomers within a single protofilament. The re­appearance of the same longitudinal interface in multiple crystal structures adds weight to arguments that the interface visualized is similar to that in actin filaments. Highly conserved atomic interactions involving residues 199–205 and 287–291 are highlighted. PMID:18391412

  5. Biomimetic systems for studying actin-based motility.

    PubMed

    Upadhyaya, Arpita; van Oudenaarden, Alexander

    2003-09-16

    Actin polymerization provides a major driving force for eukaryotic cell motility. Successive intercalation of monomeric actin subunits between the plasma membrane and the filamentous actin network results in protrusions of the membrane enabling the cell to move or to change shape. One of the challenges in understanding eukaryotic cell motility is to dissect the elementary biochemical and biophysical steps that link actin polymerization to mechanical force generation. Recently, significant progress was made using biomimetic, in vitro systems that are inspired by the actin-based motility of bacterial pathogens such as Listeria monocytogenes. Polystyrene microspheres and synthetic phospholipid vesicles coated with proteins that initiate actin polymerization display motile behavior similar to Listeria, mimicking the leading edge of lamellipodia and filopodia. A major advantage of these biomimetic systems is that both biochemical and physical parameters can be controlled precisely. These systems provide a test bed for validating theoretical models on force generation and polarity establishment resulting from actin polymerization. In this review, we discuss recent experimental progress using biomimetic systems propelled by actin polymerization and discuss these results in the light of recent theoretical models on actin-based motility.

  6. Fission yeast IQGAP arranges actin filaments into the cytokinetic contractile ring

    PubMed Central

    Takaine, Masak; Numata, Osamu; Nakano, Kentaro

    2009-01-01

    The contractile ring (CR) consists of bundled actin filaments and myosin II; however, the actin-bundling factor remains elusive. We show that the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe IQGAP Rng2 is involved in the generation of CR F-actin and required for its arrangement into a ring. An N-terminal fragment of Rng2 is necessary for the function of Rng2 and is localized to CR F-actin. In vitro the fragment promotes actin polymerization and forms linear arrays of F-actin, which are resistant to the depolymerization induced by the actin-depolymerizing factor Adf1. Our findings indicate that Rng2 is involved in the generation of CR F-actin and simultaneously bundles the filaments and regulates its dynamics by counteracting the effects of Adf1, thus enabling the reconstruction of CR F-actin bundles, which provides an insight into the physical properties of the building blocks that comprise the CR. PMID:19713940

  7. The Effects of Disease Models of Nuclear Actin Polymerization on the Nucleus

    PubMed Central

    Serebryannyy, Leonid A.; Yuen, Michaela; Parilla, Megan; Cooper, Sandra T.; de Lanerolle, Primal

    2016-01-01

    Actin plays a crucial role in regulating multiple processes within the nucleus, including transcription and chromatin organization. However, the polymerization state of nuclear actin remains controversial, and there is no evidence for persistent actin filaments in a normal interphase nucleus. Further, several disease pathologies are characterized by polymerization of nuclear actin into stable filaments or rods. These include filaments that stain with phalloidin, resulting from point mutations in skeletal α-actin, detected in the human skeletal disease intranuclear rod myopathy, and cofilin/actin rods that form in response to cellular stressors like heatshock. To further elucidate the effects of these pathological actin structures, we examined the nucleus in both cell culture models as well as isolated human tissues. We find these actin structures alter the distribution of both RNA polymerase II and chromatin. Our data suggest that nuclear actin filaments result in disruption of nuclear organization, which may contribute to the disease pathology. PMID:27774069

  8. Quantitative Fluorescent Speckle Microscopy (QFSM) to Measure Actin Dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Mendoza, Michelle C.; Besson, Sebastien; Danuser, Gaudenz

    2012-01-01

    Quantitative Fluorescent Speckle Microscopy (QFSM) is a live cell imaging method to analyze the dynamics of macromolecular assemblies with high spatial and temporal resolution. Its greatest successes were in the analysis of actin filament and adhesion dynamics in the context of cell migration and microtubule dynamics in interphase and the meotic/mitotic spindle. Here, we focus on the former application to illustrate the procedures of FSM imaging and the computational image processing that extracts quantitative information from these experiments. QFSM is advantageous over other methods because it measures the movement and turnover kinetics of the actin filament (F-actin) network in living cells across the entire field of view. Experiments begin with microinjection of fluorophore-labeled actin into cells, which generate a low ratio of fluorescently-labeled:endogenous unlabeled actin monomers. Spinning disk confocal or wide-field imaging then visualizes fluorophore clusters (2–8 actin monomers) within the assembled F-actin network as speckles. QFSM software identifies and computationally tracks and utilizes the location, appearance, and disappearance of speckles to derive network flows and maps of the rate of filament assembly and disassembly. PMID:23042526

  9. Quantitative apical membrane proteomics reveals vasopressin-induced actin dynamics in collecting duct cells

    PubMed Central

    Loo, Chin-San; Chen, Cheng-Wei; Wang, Po-Jen; Chen, Pei-Yu; Lin, Shu-Yu; Khoo, Kay-Hooi; Fenton, Robert A.; Knepper, Mark A.; Yu, Ming-Jiun

    2013-01-01

    In kidney collecting duct cells, filamentous actin (F-actin) depolymerization is a critical step in vasopressin-induced trafficking of aquaporin-2 to the apical plasma membrane. However, the molecular components of this response are largely unknown. Using stable isotope-based quantitative protein mass spectrometry and surface biotinylation, we identified 100 proteins that showed significant abundance changes in the apical plasma membrane of mouse cortical collecting duct cells in response to vasopressin. Fourteen of these proteins are involved in actin cytoskeleton regulation, including actin itself, 10 actin-associated proteins, and 3 regulatory proteins. Identified were two integral membrane proteins (Clmn, Nckap1) and one actin-binding protein (Mpp5) that link F-actin to the plasma membrane, five F-actin end-binding proteins (Arpc2, Arpc4, Gsn, Scin, and Capzb) involved in F-actin reorganization, and two actin adaptor proteins (Dbn1, Lasp1) that regulate actin cytoskeleton organization. There were also protease (Capn1), protein kinase (Cdc42bpb), and Rho guanine nucleotide exchange factor 2 (Arhgef2) that mediate signal-induced F-actin changes. Based on these findings, we devised a live-cell imaging method to observe vasopressin-induced F-actin dynamics in polarized mouse cortical collecting duct cells. In response to vasopressin, F-actin gradually disappeared near the center of the apical plasma membrane while consolidating laterally near the tight junction. This F-actin peripheralization was blocked by calcium ion chelation. Vasopressin-induced apical aquaporin-2 trafficking and forskolin-induced water permeability increase were blocked by F-actin disruption. In conclusion, we identified a vasopressin-regulated actin network potentially responsible for vasopressin-induced apical F-actin dynamics that could explain regulation of apical aquaporin-2 trafficking and water permeability increase. PMID:24085853

  10. A green fluorescent protein fusion to actin-binding domain 2 of Arabidopsis fimbrin highlights new features of a dynamic actin cytoskeleton in live plant cells.

    PubMed

    Sheahan, Michael B; Staiger, Chris J; Rose, Ray J; McCurdy, David W

    2004-12-01

    The actin cytoskeleton coordinates numerous cellular processes required for plant development. The functions of this network are intricately linked to its dynamic arrangement, and thus progress in understanding how actin orchestrates cellular processes relies on critical evaluation of actin organization and turnover. To investigate the dynamic nature of the actin cytoskeleton, we used a fusion protein between green fluorescent protein (GFP) and the second actin-binding domain (fABD2) of Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) fimbrin, AtFIM1. The GFP-fABD2 fusion protein labeled highly dynamic and dense actin networks in diverse species and cell types, revealing structural detail not seen with alternative labeling methods, such as the commonly used mouse talin GFP fusion (GFP-mTalin). Further, we show that expression of the GFP-fABD2 fusion protein in Arabidopsis, unlike GFP-mTalin, has no detectable adverse effects on plant morphology or development. Time-lapse confocal microscopy and fluorescence recovery after photobleaching analyses of the actin cytoskeleton labeled with GFP-fABD2 revealed that lateral-filament migration and sliding of individual actin filaments or bundles are processes that contribute to the dynamic and continually reorganizing nature of the actin scaffold. These new observations of the dynamic actin cytoskeleton in plant cells using GFP-fABD2 reveal the value of this probe for future investigations of how actin filaments coordinate cellular processes required for plant development.

  11. Plasmodial vein networks of the slime mold Physarum polycephalum form regular graphs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baumgarten, Werner; Ueda, Tetsuo; Hauser, Marcus J. B.

    2010-10-01

    The morphology of a typical developing biological transportation network, the vein network of the plasmodium of the myxomycete Physarum polycephalum is analyzed during its free extension. The network forms a classical, regular graph, and has exclusively nodes of degree 3. This contrasts to most real-world transportation networks which show small-world or scale-free properties. The complexity of the vein network arises from the weighting of the lengths, widths, and areas of the vein segments. The lengths and areas follow exponential distributions, while the widths are distributed log-normally. These functional dependencies are robust during the entire evolution of the network, even though the exponents change with time due to the coarsening of the vein network.

  12. Robustness of a network formed by n interdependent networks with a one-to-one correspondence of dependent nodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, Jianxi; Buldyrev, S. V.; Havlin, S.; Stanley, H. E.

    2012-06-01

    Many real-world networks interact with and depend upon other networks. We develop an analytical framework for studying a network formed by n fully interdependent randomly connected networks, each composed of the same number of nodes N. The dependency links connecting nodes from different networks establish a unique one-to-one correspondence between the nodes of one network and the nodes of the other network. We study the dynamics of the cascades of failures in such a network of networks (NON) caused by a random initial attack on one of the networks, after which a fraction p of its nodes survives. We find for the fully interdependent loopless NON that the final state of the NON does not depend on the dynamics of the cascades but is determined by a uniquely defined mutual giant component of the NON, which generalizes both the giant component of regular percolation of a single network (n=1) and the recently studied case of the mutual giant component of two interdependent networks (n=2). We also find that the mutual giant component does not depend on the topology of the NON and express it in terms of generating functions of the degree distributions of the network. Our results show that, for any n⩾2 there exists a critical p=pc>0 below which the mutual giant component abruptly collapses from a finite nonzero value for p⩾pc to zero for pnetworks where pc=0 for n=1. We show that, if at least one of the networks in the NON has isolated or singly connected nodes, the NON completely disintegrates for sufficiently large n even if p=1. In contrast, in the absence of such nodes, the NON survives for any n for sufficiently large p. We illustrate this behavior by comparing two exactly solvable examples of NONs composed of Erdős-Rényi (ER) and random regular (RR) networks. We find that the robustness of n coupled RR networks of degree k is dramatically higher compared to the n-coupled ER

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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. F-actin dismantling through a Redox-driven synergy between Mical and cofilin

    PubMed Central

    Grintsevich, Elena E.; Yesilyurt, Hunkar Gizem; Rich, Shannon K.; Hung, Ruei-Jiun; Terman, Jonathan R.; Reisler, Emil

    2016-01-01

    Numerous cellular functions depend on actin filament (F-actin) disassembly. The best-characterized disassembly proteins, the ADF/cofilins/twinstar, sever filaments and recycle monomers to promote actin assembly. Cofilin is also a relatively weak actin disassembler, posing questions about mechanisms of cellular F-actin destabilization. Here we uncover a key link to targeted F-actin disassembly by finding that F-actin is efficiently dismantled through a post-translational-mediated synergism between cofilin and the actin-oxidizing enzyme Mical. We find that Mical-mediated oxidation of actin improves cofilin binding to filaments, where their combined effect dramatically accelerates F-actin disassembly compared to either effector alone. This synergism is also necessary and sufficient for F-actin disassembly in vivo, magnifying the effects of both Mical and cofilin on cellular remodeling, axon guidance, and Semaphorin/Plexin repulsion. Mical and cofilin, therefore, form a Redox-dependent synergistic pair that promotes F-actin instability by rapidly dismantling F-actin and generating post-translationally modified actin that has altered assembly properties. PMID:27454820

  15. Actinic keratosis. Current treatment options.

    PubMed

    Jeffes, E W; Tang, E H

    2000-01-01

    Actinic keratoses are hyperkeratotic skin lesions that represent focal abnormal proliferation of epidermal keratinocytes. Some actinic keratoses evolve into squamous cell carcinoma of the skin, while others resolve spontaneously. The conversion rate of actinic keratosis to squamous cell carcinoma is not accurately known, but appears to be in the range of 0.25 to 1% per year. Although there is a low rate of conversion of actinic keratoses to squamous cell carcinoma, 60% of squamous cell carcinomas of the skin probably arise from actinic keratoses. The main cause of actinic keratoses in otherwise healthy Caucasians appears to be the sun. Therapy for actinic keratoses begins with prevention which starts with sun avoidance and physical protection. Sunprotection with sunscreens actually slows the return of actinic keratoses in patients already getting actinic keratoses. Interestingly, a few studies are available that demonstrate that a high fat diet is associated with the production of more actinic keratoses than is a low fat diet. One of the mainstays of therapy has been local destruction of the actinic keratoses with cryotherapy, and curettage and electrodesiccation. A new addition to this group of therapies to treat individual actinic keratoses is photodynamic therapy with topical aminolevulinic acid and light. In patients who have numerous actinic keratoses in an area of severely sun damaged skin, therapies which are applied to the whole actinic keratosis area are used. The goal of treating such an area of skin is to treat all of the early as well as the numerous clinically evident actinic keratoses at the same time. The classical approaches for treating areas of photodamaged skin without treating actinic keratoses individually include: the use of topically applied fluorouracil cream, dermabrasion, and cutaneous peels with various agents like trichloroacetic acid. Both topically as well as orally administered retinoids have been used to treat actinic keratoses but

  16. Myosin IIIB uses an actin-binding motif in its espin-1 cargo to reach the tips of actin protrusions.

    PubMed

    Merritt, Raymond C; Manor, Uri; Salles, Felipe T; Grati, M'hamed; Dose, Andrea C; Unrath, William C; Quintero, Omar A; Yengo, Christopher M; Kachar, Bechara

    2012-02-21

    Myosin IIIA (MYO3A) targets actin protrusion tips using a motility mechanism dependent on both motor and tail actin-binding activity [1]. We show that myosin IIIB (MYO3B) lacks tail actin-binding activity and is unable to target COS7 cell filopodia tips, yet is somehow able to target stereocilia tips. Strikingly, when MYO3B is coexpressed with espin-1 (ESPN1), a MYO3A cargo protein endogenously expressed in stereocilia [2], MYO3B targets and carries ESPN1 to COS7 filopodia tips. We show that this tip localization is lost when we remove the ESPN1 C terminus actin-binding site. We also demonstrate that, like MYO3A [2], MYO3B can elongate filopodia by transporting ESPN1 to the polymerizing end of actin filaments. The mutual dependence of MYO3B and ESPN1 for tip localization reveals a novel mechanism for the cell to regulate myosin tip localization via a reciprocal relationship with cargo that directly participates in actin binding for motility. Our results are consistent with a novel form of motility for class III myosins that requires both motor and tail domain actin-binding activity and show that the actin-binding tail can be replaced by actin-binding cargo. This study also provides a framework to better understand the late-onset hearing loss phenotype in patients with MYO3A mutations.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

    The tropomyosin family of proteins form end-to-end polymers along the actin filament. Tumour cells rely on specific tropomyosin-containing actin filament populations for growth and survival. To dissect out the role of tropomyosin in actin filament regulation we use the small molecule TR100 directed against the C terminus of the tropomyosin isoform Tpm3.1. TR100 nullifies the effect of Tpm3.1 on actin depolymerisation but surprisingly Tpm3.1 retains the capacity to bind F-actin in a cooperative manner. In vivo analysis also confirms that, in the presence of TR100, fluorescently tagged Tpm3.1 recovers normally into stress fibers. Assembling end-to-end along the actin filament is thereby not sufficient for tropomyosin to fulfil its function. Rather, regulation of F-actin stability by tropomyosin requires fidelity of information communicated at the barbed end of the actin filament. This distinction has significant implications for perturbing tropomyosin-dependent actin filament function in the context of anti-cancer drug development. PMID:26804624

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

    PubMed

    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.

  19. Evolutionarily Divergent, Unstable Filamentous Actin Is Essential for Gliding Motility in Apicomplexan Parasites

    PubMed Central

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

    2011-01-01

    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. PMID:21998582

  20. Differential identity of Filopodia and Tunneling Nanotubes revealed by the opposite functions of actin regulatory complexes

    PubMed Central

    Delage, Elise; Cervantes, Diégo Cordero; Pénard, Esthel; Schmitt, Christine; Syan, Sylvie; Disanza, Andrea; Scita, Giorgio; Zurzolo, Chiara

    2016-01-01

    Tunneling Nanotubes (TNTs) are actin enriched filopodia-like protrusions that play a pivotal role in long-range intercellular communication. Different pathogens use TNT-like structures as “freeways” to propagate across cells. TNTs are also implicated in cancer and neurodegenerative diseases, making them promising therapeutic targets. Understanding the mechanism of their formation, and their relation with filopodia is of fundamental importance to uncover their physiological function, particularly since filopodia, differently from TNTs, are not able to mediate transfer of cargo between distant cells. Here we studied different regulatory complexes of actin, which play a role in the formation of both these structures. We demonstrate that the filopodia-promoting CDC42/IRSp53/VASP network negatively regulates TNT formation and impairs TNT-mediated intercellular vesicle transfer. Conversely, elevation of Eps8, an actin regulatory protein that inhibits the extension of filopodia in neurons, increases TNT formation. Notably, Eps8-mediated TNT induction requires Eps8 bundling but not its capping activity. Thus, despite their structural similarities, filopodia and TNTs form through distinct molecular mechanisms. Our results further suggest that a switch in the molecular composition in common actin regulatory complexes is critical in driving the formation of either type of membrane protrusion. PMID:28008977

  1. Actin, actin-related proteins and profilin in diatoms: a comparative genomic analysis.

    PubMed

    Aumeier, Charlotte; Polinski, Ellen; Menzel, Diedrik

    2015-10-01

    Diatoms are heterokont unicellular algae with a widespread distribution throughout all aquatic habitats. Research on diatoms has advanced significantly over the last decade due to available genetic transformation methods and publicly available genome databases. Yet up to now, proteins involved in the regulation of the cytoskeleton in diatoms are largely unknown. Consequently, this work focuses on actin and actin-related proteins (ARPs) encoded in the diatom genomes of Thalassiosira pseudonana, Thalassiosira oceanica, Phaeodactylum tricornutum, Fragilariopsis cylindrus and Pseudo-nitzschia multiseries. Our comparative genomic study revealed that most diatoms possess only a single conventional actin and a small set of ARPs. Among these are the highly conserved cytoplasmic Arp1 protein and the nuclear Arp4 as well as Arp6. Diatom genomes contain genes coding for two structurally different homologues of Arp4 that might serve specific functions. All diatom species examined here lack ARP2 and ARP3 proteins, suggesting that diatoms are not capable of forming the Arp2/3 complex, which is essential in most eukaryotes for actin filament branching and plus-end dynamics. Interestingly, none of the sequenced representatives of the Bacillariophyta phylum code for profilin. Profilin is an essential actin-binding protein regulating the monomer actin pool and is involved in filament plus-end dynamics. This is the first report of organisms not containing profilin.

  2. The centrosome is an actin-organizing center

    PubMed Central

    Farina, Francesca; Gaillard, Jérémie; Guérin, Christophe; Couté, Yohann; Sillibourne, James; Blanchoin, Laurent; Théry, Manuel

    2016-01-01

    Microtubules and actin filaments are the two main cytoskeleton networks supporting intracellular architecture and cell polarity. The centrosome nucleates and anchors microtubules and is therefore considered to be the main microtubule-organizing center. However, recurring, yet unexplained, observations have pointed towards a connection between the centrosome and actin filaments. Here we have used isolated centrosomes to demonstrate that the centrosome can directly promote actin filament assembly. A cloud of centrosome-associated actin filaments could be identified in living cells as well. Actin-filament nucleation at the centrosome was mediated by the nucleation promoting factor WASH in combination with the Arp2/3 complex. Pericentriolar material 1 (PCM1) appeared to modulate the centrosomal actin network by regulating Arp2/3 complex and WASH recruitment to the centrosome. Hence our results reveal an additional facet of the centrosome as an intracellular organizer and provide mechanistic insights into how the centrosome can function as an actin filament-organizing center. PMID:26655833

  3. F-actin flow drives affinity maturation and spatial organization of LFA-1 at the immunological synapse

    PubMed Central

    Comrie, William A.; Babich, Alexander

    2015-01-01

    Integrin-dependent interactions between T cells and antigen-presenting cells are vital for proper T cell activation, effector function, and memory. Regulation of integrin function occurs via conformational change, which modulates ligand affinity, and receptor clustering, which modulates valency. Here, we show that conformational intermediates of leukocyte functional antigen 1 (LFA-1) form a concentric array at the immunological synapse. Using an inhibitor cocktail to arrest F-actin dynamics, we show that organization of this array depends on F-actin flow and ligand mobility. Furthermore, F-actin flow is critical for maintaining the high affinity conformation of LFA-1, for increasing valency by recruiting LFA-1 to the immunological synapse, and ultimately for promoting intracellular cell adhesion molecule 1 (ICAM-1) binding. Finally, we show that F-actin forces are opposed by immobilized ICAM-1, which triggers LFA-1 activation through a combination of induced fit and tension-based mechanisms. Our data provide direct support for a model in which the T cell actin network generates mechanical forces that regulate LFA-1 activity at the immunological synapse. PMID:25666810

  4. Ground test bed design for self-forming network in disaggregated satellites system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Pengfei; Yang, Lei; Chen, Xiaoqian

    2016-02-01

    Disaggregated spacecraft architecture arouses an increasing attention in the realm of distributed space systems in recent years. One of the main technical challenges for disaggregated spacecraft system is self-forming network, in which new satellite nodes are allowed to join in a 'plug-and-play' fashion. To facilitate the protocol design for self-forming network, high-fidelity simulation tools are required. To that end, with the aid of OPNET Modeler's co-simulation mechanism provided by the external system (Esys) module, a ground test bed solution for self-forming network in disaggregated satellites system is presented, and then tested in a self-forming network scenario during the ingress process of a new-added satellite module. Simulation results show that this test bed can support for the evaluation of network performance, as well as mobility modeling which enables reflecting both the effects of orbital dynamic behaviors and in-orbit maneuver or control efforts. Though this test bed is mainly developed for the purpose of further study in disaggregated satellites system, its architecture can also be extended to other satellite network applications.

  5. Actin stress in cell reprogramming

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Jun; Wang, Yuexiu; Sachs, Frederick; Meng, Fanjie

    2014-01-01

    Cell mechanics plays a role in stem cell reprogramming and differentiation. To understand this process better, we created a genetically encoded optical probe, named actin–cpstFRET–actin (AcpA), to report forces in actin in living cells in real time. We showed that stemness was associated with increased force in actin. We reprogrammed HEK-293 cells into stem-like cells using no transcription factors but simply by softening the substrate. However, Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cell reprogramming required, in addition to a soft substrate, Harvey rat sarcoma viral oncogene homolog expression. Replating the stem-like cells on glass led to redifferentiation and reduced force in actin. The actin force probe was a FRET sensor, called cpstFRET (circularly permuted stretch sensitive FRET), flanked by g-actin subunits. The labeled actin expressed efficiently in HEK, MDCK, 3T3, and bovine aortic endothelial cells and in multiple stable cell lines created from those cells. The viability of the cell lines demonstrated that labeled actin did not significantly affect cell physiology. The labeled actin distribution was similar to that observed with GFP-tagged actin. We also examined the stress in the actin cross-linker actinin. Actinin force was not always correlated with actin force, emphasizing the need for addressing protein specificity when discussing forces. Because actin is a primary structural protein in animal cells, understanding its force distribution is central to understanding animal cell physiology and the many linked reactions such as stress-induced gene expression. This new probe permits measuring actin forces in a wide range of experiments on preparations ranging from isolated proteins to transgenic animals. PMID:25422450

  6. Efficacy of a Film-Forming Medical Device Containing Piroxicam and Sun Filters in the Treatment of Multiple Actinic Keratosis Lesions in a Subject with a History of Kaposi Sarcoma

    PubMed Central

    Scotti, Elisabetta; Deledda, Salvatore; Milani, Massimo

    2016-01-01

    Actinic keratosis (AK) is considered a premalignant form of skin cancer due to chronic sun exposure. In addition, human papilloma virus (HPV) has been advocated a role in the pathogenesis of this clinical condition. HPV proteins (mainly E6 and E7) seem to act synergistically with ultraviolet (UV) radiation in reducing the defensive mechanisms of keratinocyte apoptosis after UV damage. Data regarding the involvement of other viruses, i.e. human herpes viruses (HHV), in the pathogenesis of AK are so far controversial. HHV8 is considered the infective agent involved in the development of Kaposi sarcoma. Some experimental data have shown that AK lesions carry HHV8 in more than 30% of the bioptic samples. Topical piroxicam was shown to be effective in the treatment of AK. In addition, the molecule shows antiviral action against HPV and HHV8. Here, we report the efficacy of a medical device containing a film-forming substance (polyvinyl alcohol), chemical and physical sun filters (SPF 50+), and 0.8% piroxicam (Actixicam™, Difa Cooper; ACTX) in the treatment of multiple scalp AK lesions, unresponsive to other treatments, in a subject with Kaposi sarcoma and a history of severe contact dermatitis. The subject presented with severe involvement of the scalp, with multiple hypertrophic AK lesions. Previous lesion-directed and field-targeted treatments have not been effective. The subject was treated with ACTX applied twice daily on the affected scalp. Relevant clinical improvement was observed as soon as 1 month of therapy. Complete clinical resolution of all scalp lesions was observed after 3 months of treatment. The product was well tolerated. PMID:28101017

  7. Microtubule-dependent transport of vimentin filament precursors is regulated by actin and by the concerted action of Rho- and p21-activated kinases.

    PubMed

    Robert, Amélie; Herrmann, Harald; Davidson, Michael W; Gelfand, Vladimir I

    2014-07-01

    Intermediate filaments (IFs) form a dense and dynamic network that is functionally associated with microtubules and actin filaments. We used the GFP-tagged vimentin mutant Y117L to study vimentin-cytoskeletal interactions and transport of vimentin filament precursors. This mutant preserves vimentin interaction with other components of the cytoskeleton, but its assembly is blocked at the unit-length filament (ULF) stage. ULFs are easy to track, and they allow a reliable and quantifiable analysis of movement. Our results show that in cultured human vimentin-negative SW13 cells, 2% of vimentin-ULFs move along microtubules bidirectionally, while the majority are stationary and tightly associated with actin filaments. Rapid motor-dependent transport of ULFs along microtubules is enhanced ≥ 5-fold by depolymerization of actin cytoskeleton with latrunculin B. The microtubule-dependent transport of vimentin ULFs is further regulated by Rho-kinase (ROCK) and p21-activated kinase (PAK): ROCK inhibits ULF transport, while PAK stimulates it. Both kinases act on microtubule transport independently of their effects on actin cytoskeleton. Our study demonstrates the importance of the actin cytoskeleton to restrict IF transport and reveals a new role for PAK and ROCK in the regulation of IF precursor transport.-Robert, A., Herrmann, H., Davidson, M. W., and Gelfand, V. I. Microtubule-dependent transport of vimentin filament precursors is regulated by actin and by the concerted action of Rho- and p21-activated kinases.

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

    PubMed Central

    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. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.06585.001 PMID:26295568

  9. Single-molecule studies of actin assembly and disassembly factors.

    PubMed

    Smith, Benjamin A; Gelles, Jeff; Goode, Bruce L

    2014-01-01

    The actin cytoskeleton is very dynamic and highly regulated by multiple associated proteins in vivo. Understanding how this system of proteins functions in the processes of actin network assembly and disassembly requires methods to dissect the mechanisms of activity of individual factors and of multiple factors acting in concert. The advent of single-filament and single-molecule fluorescence imaging methods has provided a powerful new approach to discovering actin-regulatory activities and obtaining direct, quantitative insights into the pathways of molecular interactions that regulate actin network architecture and dynamics. Here we describe techniques for acquisition and analysis of single-molecule data, applied to the novel challenges of studying the filament assembly and disassembly activities of actin-associated proteins in vitro. We discuss the advantages of single-molecule analysis in directly visualizing the order of molecular events, measuring the kinetic rates of filament binding and dissociation, and studying the coordination among multiple factors. The methods described here complement traditional biochemical approaches in elucidating actin-regulatory mechanisms in reconstituted filamentous networks.

  10. Moesin and cortactin control actin-dependent multivesicular endosome biogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Muriel, Olivia; Tomas, Alejandra; Scott, Cameron C.; Gruenberg, Jean

    2016-01-01

    We used in vivo and in vitro strategies to study the mechanisms of multivesicular endosome biogenesis. We found that, whereas annexinA2 and ARP2/3 mediate F-actin nucleation and branching, respectively, the ERM protein moesin supports the formation of F-actin networks on early endosomes. We also found that moesin plays no role during endocytosis and recycling to the plasma membrane but is absolutely required, much like actin, for early-to-late-endosome transport and multivesicular endosome formation. Both actin network formation in vitro and early-to-late endosome transport in vivo also depend on the F-actin–binding protein cortactin. Our data thus show that moesin and cortactin are necessary for formation of F-actin networks that mediate endosome biogenesis or maturation and transport through the degradative pathway. We propose that the primary function of endosomal F-actin is to control the membrane remodeling that accompanies endosome biogenesis. We also speculate that this mechanism helps segregate tubular and multivesicular membranes along the recycling and degradation pathways, respectively. PMID:27605702

  11. Role of Actin Polymerization in Cell Locomotion: Molecules and Models

    PubMed Central

    Bearer, E. L.

    2015-01-01

    Actin filaments forming at the anterior margin of a migrating cell are essential for the formation of filopodia, lamellipodia, and pseudopodia, the “feet” that the cell extends before it. These structures in turn are required for cell locomotion. Yet the molecular nature of the “nucleator” that seeds the polymerization of actin at the leading edge is unknown. Recent advances, including video microscopy of actin dynamics, discovery of proteins unique to the leading edge such as ponticulin, the Mab 2E4 antigen, and ABP 120, and novel experimental models of actin polymerization such as the actin-based movements of intracellular parasites, promise to shed light on this problem in the near future. PMID:8323743

  12. Actin-associated Proteins in the Pathogenesis of Podocyte Injury.

    PubMed

    He, Fang-Fang; Chen, Shan; Su, Hua; Meng, Xian-Fang; Zhang, Chun

    2013-11-01

    Podocytes have a complex cellular architecture with interdigitating processes maintained by a precise organization of actin filaments. The actin-based foot processes of podocytes and the interposed slit diaphragm form the final barrier to proteinuria. The function of podocytes is largely based on the maintenance of the normal foot process structure with actin cytoskeleton. Cytoskeletal dynamics play important roles during normal podocyte development, in maintenance of the healthy glomerular filtration barrier, and in the pathogenesis of glomerular diseases. In this review, we focused on recent findings on the mechanisms of organization and reorganization of these actin-related molecules in the pathogenesis of podocyte injury and potential therapeutics targeting the regulation of actin cytoskeleton in podocytopathies.

  13. Microelectromechanical filter formed from parallel-connected lattice networks of contour-mode resonators

    DOEpatents

    Wojciechowski, Kenneth E; Olsson, III, Roy H; Ziaei-Moayyed, Maryam

    2013-07-30

    A microelectromechanical (MEM) filter is disclosed which has a plurality of lattice networks formed on a substrate and electrically connected together in parallel. Each lattice network has a series resonant frequency and a shunt resonant frequency provided by one or more contour-mode resonators in the lattice network. Different types of contour-mode resonators including single input, single output resonators, differential resonators, balun resonators, and ring resonators can be used in MEM filter. The MEM filter can have a center frequency in the range of 10 MHz-10 GHz, with a filter bandwidth of up to about 1% when all of the lattice networks have the same series resonant frequency and the same shunt resonant frequency. The filter bandwidth can be increased up to about 5% by using unique series and shunt resonant frequencies for the lattice networks.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    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

  16. Inhibition of CapZ during myofibrillogenesis alters assembly of actin filaments

    PubMed Central

    1995-01-01

    The actin filaments of myofibrils are highly organized; they are of a uniform length and polarity and are situated in the sarcomere in an aligned array. We hypothesized that the barbed-end actin-binding protein, CapZ, directs the process of actin filament assembly during myofibrillogenesis. We tested this hypothesis by inhibiting the actin- binding activity of CapZ in developing myotubes in culture using two different methods. First, injection of a monoclonal antibody that prevents the interaction of CapZ and actin disrupts the non-striated bundles of actin filaments formed during the early stages of myofibril formation in skeletal myotubes in culture. The antibody, when injected at concentrations lower than that required for disrupting the actin filaments, binds at nascent Z-disks. Since the interaction of CapZ and the monoclonal antibody are mutually exclusive, this result indicates that CapZ binds nascent Z-disks independent of an interaction with actin filaments. In a second approach, expression in myotubes of a mutant form of CapZ that does not bind actin results in a delay in the appearance of actin in a striated pattern in myofibrils. The organization of alpha-actinin at Z-disks also is delayed, but the organization of titin and myosin in sarcomeres is not significantly altered. We conclude that the interaction of CapZ and actin is important for the organization of actin filaments of the sarcomere. PMID:7822423

  17. Calcium regulation of actin crosslinking is important for function of the actin cytoskeleton in Dictyostelium.

    PubMed

    Furukawa, Ruth; Maselli, Andrew; Thomson, Susanne A M; Lim, Rita W L; Stokes, John V; Fechheimer, Marcus

    2003-01-01

    The actin cytoskeleton is sensitive to changes in calcium, which affect contractility, actin-severing proteins, actin-crosslinking proteins and calmodulin-regulated enzymes. To dissect the role of calcium control on the activity of individual proteins from effects of calcium on other processes, calcium-insensitive forms of these proteins were prepared and introduced into living cells to replace a calcium-sensitive form of the same protein. Crosslinking and bundling of actin filaments by the Dictyostelium 34 kDa protein is inhibited in the presence of micromolar free calcium. A modified form of the 34 kDa protein with mutations in the calcium binding EF hand (34 kDa deltaEF2) was prepared using site-directed mutagenesis and expressed in E. coli. Equilibrium dialysis using [(45)Ca]CaCl(2) revealed that the wild-type protein is able to bind one calcium ion with a Kd of 2.4 microM. This calcium binding is absent in the 34 kDa deltaEF2 protein. The actin-binding activity of the 34 kDa deltaEF2 protein was equivalent to wildtype but calcium insensitive in vitro. The wild-type and 34 kDa deltaEF2 proteins were expressed in 34-kDa-null and 34 kDa/alpha-actinin double null mutant Dictyostelium strains to test the hypothesis that calcium regulation of actin crosslinking is important in vivo. The 34 kDa deltaEF2 failed to supply function of the 34 kDa protein important for control of cell size and for normal growth to either of these 34-kDa-null strains. Furthermore, the distribution of the 34 kDa protein and actin were abnormal in cells expressing 34 kDa deltaEF2. Thus, calcium regulation of the formation and/or dissolution of crosslinked actin structures is required for dynamic behavior of the actin cytoskeleton important for cell structure and growth.

  18. The actin-binding protein Canoe/AF-6 forms a complex with Robo and is required for Slit-Robo signaling during axon pathfinding at the CNS midline.

    PubMed

    Slováková, Jana; Speicher, Stephan; Sánchez-Soriano, Natalia; Prokop, Andreas; Carmena, Ana

    2012-07-18

    Axon guidance is a key process during nervous system development and regeneration. One of the best established paradigms to study the mechanisms underlying this process is the axon decision of whether or not to cross the midline in the Drosophila CNS. An essential regulator of that decision is the well conserved Slit-Robo signaling pathway. Slit guidance cues act through Robo receptors to repel axons from the midline. Despite good progress in our knowledge about these proteins, the intracellular mechanisms associated with Robo function remain poorly defined. In this work, we found that the scaffolding protein Canoe (Cno), the Drosophila orthologue of AF-6/Afadin, is essential for Slit-Robo signaling. Cno is expressed along longitudinal axonal pioneer tracts, and longitudinal Robo/Fasciclin2-positive axons aberrantly cross the midline in cno mutant embryos. cno mutant primary neurons show a significant reduction of Robo localized in growth cone filopodia and Cno forms a complex with Robo in vivo. Moreover, the commissureless (comm) phenotype (i.e., lack of commissures due to constitutive surface presentation of Robo in all neurons) is suppressed in comm, cno double-mutant embryos. Specific genetic interactions between cno, slit, robo, and genes encoding other components of the Robo pathway, such as Neurexin-IV, Syndecan, and Rac GTPases, further confirm that Cno functionally interacts with the Slit-Robo pathway. Our data argue that Cno is a novel regulator of the Slit-Robo signaling pathway, crucial for regulating the subcellular localization of Robo and for transducing its signaling to the actin cytoskeleton during axon guidance at the midline.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  20. Coupling of vinculin to F-actin demands Syndecan-4 proteoglycan.

    PubMed

    Cavalheiro, R P; Lima, M A; Jarrouge-Bouças, T R; Viana, G M; Lopes, C C; Coulson-Thomas, V J; Dreyfuss, J L; Yates, E A; Tersariol, I L S; Nader, H B

    2017-01-04

    Syndecans are heparan sulfate proteoglycans characterized as transmembrane receptors that act cooperatively with the cell surface and extracellular matrix proteins. Syn4 knockdown was performed in order to address its role in endothelial cells (EC) behavior. Normal EC and shRNA-Syn4-EC cells were studied comparatively using complementary confocal, super-resolution and non-linear microscopic techniques. Confocal and super-resolution microscopy revealed that Syn4 knockdown alters the level and arrangement of essential proteins for focal adhesion, evidenced by the decoupling of vinculin from F-actin filaments. Furthermore, Syn4 knockdown alters the actin network leading to filopodial protrusions connected by VE-cadherin-rich junction. shRNA-Syn4-EC showed reduced adhesion and increased migration. Also, Syn4 silencing alters cell cycle as well as cell proliferation. Moreover, the ability of EC to form tube-like structures in matrigel is reduced when Syn4 is silenced. Together, the results suggest a mechanism in which Syndecan-4 acts as a central mediator that bridges fibronectin, integrin and intracellular components (actin and vinculin) and once silenced, the cytoskeleton protein network is disrupted. Ultimately, the results highlight Syn4 relevance for balanced cell behavior.

  1. Early Signaling in Primary T Cells Activated by Antigen Presenting Cells Is Associated with a Deep and Transient Lamellal Actin Network

    PubMed Central

    Roybal, Kole T.; Mace, Emily M.; Mantell, Judith M.; Verkade, Paul; Orange, Jordan S.; Wülfing, Christoph

    2015-01-01

    Cellular signaling transduction critically depends on molecular interactions that are in turn governed by dynamic subcellular distributions of the signaling system components. Comprehensive insight into signal transduction requires an understanding of such distributions and cellular structures driving them. To investigate the activation of primary murine T cells by antigen presenting cells (APC) we have imaged more than 60 signaling intermediates during T cell stimulation with microscopy across resolution limits. A substantial number of signaling intermediates associated with a transient, wide, and actin-associated lamellum extending from an interdigitated T cell:APC interface several micrometers into the T cell, as characterized in detail here. By mapping the more than 60 signaling intermediates onto the spatiotemporal features of cell biological structures, the lamellum and other ones previously described, we also define distinct spatial and temporal characteristics of T cell signal initiation, amplification, and core signaling in the activation of primary T cells by APCs. These characteristics differ substantially from ones seen when T cells are activated using common reductionist approaches. PMID:26237050

  2. Whirlin interacts with espin and modulates its actin-regulatory function: an insight into the mechanism of Usher syndrome type II.

    PubMed

    Wang, Le; Zou, Junhuang; Shen, Zuolian; Song, E; Yang, Jun

    2012-02-01

    Whirlin mutations cause retinal degeneration and hearing loss in Usher syndrome type II (USH2) and non-syndromic deafness, DFNB31. Its protein recruits other USH2 causative proteins to form a complex at the periciliary membrane complex in photoreceptors and the ankle link of the stereocilia in hair cells. However, the biological function of this USH2 protein complex is largely unknown. Using a yeast two-hybrid screen, we identified espin, an actin-binding/bundling protein involved in human deafness when defective, as a whirlin-interacting protein. The interaction between these two proteins was confirmed by their coimmunoprecipitation and colocalization in cultured cells. This interaction involves multiple domains of both proteins and only occurs when espin does not bind to actin. Espin was partially colocalized with whirlin in the retina and the inner ear. In whirlin knockout mice, espin expression changed significantly in these two tissues. Further studies found that whirlin increased the mobility of espin and actin at the actin bundles cross-linked by espin and, eventually, affected the dimension of these actin bundles. In whirlin knockout mice, the stereocilia were thickened in inner hair cells. We conclude that the interaction between whirlin and espin and the balance between their expressions are required to maintain the actin bundle network in photoreceptors and hair cells. Disruption of this actin bundle network contributes to the pathogenic mechanism of hearing loss and retinal degeneration caused by whirlin and espin mutations. Espin is a component of the USH2 protein complex and could be a candidate gene for Usher syndrome.

  3. Implementing Network Common Data Form (netCDF) for the 3DWF Model

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2016-02-01

    ARL-TR-7605 ● FEB 2016 US Army Research Laboratory Implementing network Common Data Form (netCDF) for the 3DWF Model by Giap...Common Data Form (netCDF) for the 3DWF Model by Giap Huynh and Yansen Wang Computational and Information Sciences Directorate, ARL...existing data sources, gathering and maintaining the data needed, and completing and reviewing the collection information. Send comments regarding

  4. CRMP-5 interacts with actin to regulate neurite outgrowth

    PubMed Central

    GONG, XIAOBING; TAN, MINGHUI; GAO, YUAN; CHEN, KEEN; GUO, GUOQING

    2016-01-01

    CRMP family proteins (CRMPs) are abundantly expressed in the developing nervous system mediating growth cone guidance, neuronal polarity and axon elongation. CRMP-5 has been indicated to serve a critical role in neurite outgrowth. However, the detailed mechanisms of how CRMP-5 regulates neurite outgrowth remain unclear. In the current study, co-immunoprecipitation was used to identify the fact that CRMP-5 interacted with the actin and tubulin cytoskeleton networks in the growth cones of developing hippocampal neurons. CRMP-5 exhibited increased affinity towards actin when compared with microtubules. Immunocytochemistry was used to identify the fact that CRMP-5 colocalized with actin predominantly in the C-domain and T-zone in growth cones. In addition, genetic inhibition of CRMP-5 by siRNA suppressed the expression of actin, growth cone development and neurite outgrowth. Overexpression of CRMP-5 promoted the interaction with actin, growth cone development and hippocampal neurite outgrowth. Taken together, these data suggest that CRMP-5 is able to interact with the actin cytoskeleton network in the growth cone and affect growth cone development and neurite outgrowth via this interaction in developing hippocampal neurons. PMID:26677106

  5. Artificial neural networks in evaluation and optimization of modified release solid dosage forms.

    PubMed

    Ibrić, Svetlana; Djuriš, Jelena; Parojčić, Jelena; Djurić, Zorica

    2012-10-18

    Implementation of the Quality by Design (QbD) approach in pharmaceutical development has compelled researchers in the pharmaceutical industry to employ Design of Experiments (DoE) as a statistical tool, in product development. Among all DoE techniques, response surface methodology (RSM) is the one most frequently used. Progress of computer science has had an impact on pharmaceutical development as well. Simultaneous with the implementation of statistical methods, machine learning tools took an important place in drug formulation. Twenty years ago, the first papers describing application of artificial neural networks in optimization of modified release products appeared. Since then, a lot of work has been done towards implementation of new techniques, especially Artificial Neural Networks (ANN) in modeling of production, drug release and drug stability of modified release solid dosage forms. The aim of this paper is to review artificial neural networks in evaluation and optimization of modified release solid dosage forms.

  6. Force Generation, Polymerization Dynamics and Nucleation of Actin Filaments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Ruizhe

    We study force generation and actin filament dynamics using stochastic and deterministic methods. First, we treat force generation of bundled actin filaments by polymerization via molecular-level stochastic simulations. In the widely-used Brownian Ratchet model, actin filaments grow freely whenever the tip-obstacle gap created by thermal fluctuation exceeds the monomer size. We name this model the Perfect Brownian Ratchet (PBR) model. In the PBR model, actin monomer diffusion is treated implicitly. We perform a series of simulations based on the PBR, in which obstacle motion is treated explicitly; in most previous studies, obstacle motion has been treated implicitly. We find that the cooperativity of filaments is generally weak in the PBR model, meaning that more filaments would grow more slowly given the same force per filament. Closed-form formulas are also developed, which match the simulation results. These portable and accurate formulas provide guidance for experiments and upper and lower bounds for theoretical analyses. We also studied a variation of the PBR, called the Diffusing Brownian Ratchet (DBR) model, in which both actin monomer and obstacle diffusion are treated explicitly. We find that the growth rate of multiple filaments is even lower, compared with that in PBR. This finding challenges the widely-accepted PBR assumption and suggests that pushing the study of actin dynamics down to the sub-nanometer level yields new insights. We subsequently used a rate equation approach to model the effect of local depletion of actin monomers on the nucleation of actin filaments on biomimetic beads, and how the effect is regulated by capping protein (CP). We find that near the bead surface, a higher CP concentration increases local actin concentration, which leads to an enhanced activities of actin filaments' nucleation. Our model analysis matches the experimental results and lends support to an important but undervalued hypothesis proposed by Carlier and

  7. Soliton quenching NLTL impulse circuit with a pulse forming network at the output

    DOEpatents

    McEwan, T.E.; Dallum, G.E.

    1998-09-08

    An impulse forming circuit is disclosed which produces a clean impulse from a nonlinear transmission line compressed step function without customary soliton ringing by means of a localized pulse shaping and differentiating network which shunts the nonlinear transmission line output to ground. 5 figs.

  8. Soliton quenching NLTL impulse circuit with a pulse forming network at the output

    DOEpatents

    McEwan, Thomas E.; Dallum, Gregory E.

    1998-01-01

    An impulse forming circuit is disclosed which produces a clean impulse from a nonlinear transmission line compressed step function without customary soliton ringing by means of a localized pulse shaping and differentiating network which shunts the nonlinear transmission line output to ground.

  9. Modeling Multiple Human-Automation Distributed Systems using Network-form Games

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brat, Guillaume

    2012-01-01

    The paper describes at a high-level the network-form game framework (based on Bayes net and game theory), which can be used to model and analyze safety issues in large, distributed, mixed human-automation systems such as NextGen.

  10. Actin-binding Protein Drebrin Regulates HIV-1-triggered Actin Polymerization and Viral Infection*

    PubMed Central

    Gordón-Alonso, Mónica; Rocha-Perugini, Vera; Álvarez, Susana; Ursa, Ángeles; Izquierdo-Useros, Nuria; Martinez-Picado, Javier; Muñoz-Fernández, María A.; Sánchez-Madrid, Francisco

    2013-01-01

    HIV-1 contact with target cells triggers F-actin rearrangements that are essential for several steps of the viral cycle. Successful HIV entry into CD4+ T cells requires actin reorganization induced by the interaction of the cellular receptor/co-receptor complex CD4/CXCR4 with the viral envelope complex gp120/gp41 (Env). In this report, we analyze the role of the actin modulator drebrin in HIV-1 viral infection and cell to cell fusion. We show that drebrin associates with CXCR4 before and during HIV infection. Drebrin is actively recruited toward cell-virus and Env-driven cell to cell contacts. After viral internalization, drebrin clustering is retained in a fraction of the internalized particles. Through a combination of RNAi-based inhibition of endogenous drebrin and GFP-tagged expression of wild-type and mutant forms, we establish drebrin as a negative regulator of HIV entry and HIV-mediated cell fusion. Down-regulation of drebrin expression promotes HIV-1 entry, decreases F-actin polymerization, and enhances profilin local accumulation in response to HIV-1. These data underscore the negative role of drebrin in HIV infection by modulating viral entry, mainly through the control of actin cytoskeleton polymerization in response to HIV-1. PMID:23926103

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

    PubMed

    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.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2010-01-01

    The actin-binding protein caldesmon (CaD) reversibly inhibits smooth muscle contraction. In non-muscle cells, a shorter CaD isoform co-exists with microfilaments in the stress fibers at the quiescent state, but the phosphorylated CaD is found at the leading edge of migrating cells where dynamic actin filament remodeling occurs. We have studied the effect of a C-terminal fragment of CaD (H32K) on the kinetics of the in vitro actin polymerization by monitoring the fluorescence of pyrene-labeled actin. Addition of H32K or its phosphorylated form either attenuated or accelerated the pyrene emission enhancement, depending on whether it was added at the early or the late phase of actin polymerization. However, the CaD fragment had no effect on the yield of sedimentable actin, nor did it affect the actin ATPase activity. Our findings can be explained by a model in which nascent actin filaments undergo a maturation process that involves at least two intermediate conformational states. If present at early stages of actin polymerization, CaD stabilizes one of the intermediate states and blocks the subsequent filament maturation. Addition of CaD at a later phase accelerates F-actin formation. The fact that CaD is capable of inhibiting actin filament maturation provides a novel function for CaD and suggests an active role in the dynamic reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton. PMID:19889635

  13. Disease causing mutations of troponin alter regulated actin state distributions.

    PubMed

    Chalovich, Joseph M

    2012-12-01

    Striated muscle contraction is regulated primarily through the action of tropomyosin and troponin that are bound to actin. Activation requires Ca(2+) binding to troponin and/or binding of high affinity myosin complexes to actin. Mutations within components of the regulatory complex may lead to familial cardiomyopathies and myopathies. In several cases examined, either physiological or pathological changes in troponin alter the distribution among states of actin-tropomyosin-troponin that differ in their abilities to stimulate myosin ATPase activity. These observations open possibilities for managing disorders of the troponin complex. Furthermore, analyses of mutant forms of troponin give insights into the regulation of striated muscle contraction.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-03-01

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

  15. Biochemical analysis of actin in crane-fly gonial cells: evidence for actin in spermatocytes and spermatids--but not sperm

    PubMed Central

    1980-01-01

    A biochemical assay employing DNase-I affinity chromatography, two- dimensional peptide analysis and SDS polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis was used to isolate, identify, and assess the amount of actin from gonial cells of the crane fly, Nephrotoma suturalis. Based on the analysis of cell homogenates under conditions in which all cellular actin is converted to the monomeric DNase-binding form, actin comprises approximately 1% of the total protein in homogenates of spermatocytes and spermatids. SDS gel analysis of mature sperm reveals no polypeptides with a molecular weight similar to that of actin. Under conditions that preserve native supramolecular states of actin, approximately 80% of the spermatocyte actin is in a sedimentable form whereas only approximately 30% of the spermatid actin is sedimentable. These differences could be meaningful with regard to strutural changes that occur during spermiogenesis. A comparative analysis of two- dimensional peptide maps of several radioiodinated actins reveals similarities among spermatocyte, spermatid, and human erythrocyte actins. The results suggest the general applicability of this approach to other cell types that contain limited amounts of actin. PMID:6893453

  16. The many forms of a pleomorphic bacterial pathogen—the developmental network of Legionella pneumophila

    PubMed Central

    Robertson, Peter; Abdelhady, Hany; Garduño, Rafael A.

    2014-01-01

    Legionella pneumophila is a natural intracellular bacterial parasite of free-living freshwater protozoa and an accidental human pathogen that causes Legionnaires' disease. L. pneumophila differentiates, and does it in style. Recent experimental data on L. pneumophila's differentiation point at the existence of a complex network that involves many developmental forms. We intend readers to: (i) understand the biological relevance of L. pneumophila's forms found in freshwater and their potential to transmit Legionnaires' disease, and (ii) learn that the common depiction of L. pneumophila's differentiation as a biphasic developmental cycle that alternates between a replicative and a transmissive form is but an oversimplification of the actual process. Our specific objectives are to provide updates on the molecular factors that regulate L. pneumophila's differentiation (Section The Differentiation Process and Its Regulation), and describe the developmental network of L. pneumophila (Section Dissecting Lp's Developmental Network), which for clarity's sake we have dissected into five separate developmental cycles. Finally, since each developmental form seems to contribute differently to the human pathogenic process and the transmission of Legionnaires' disease, readers are presented with a challenge to develop novel methods to detect the various L. pneumophila forms present in water (Section Practical Implications), as a means to improve our assessment of risk and more effectively prevent legionellosis outbreaks. PMID:25566200

  17. Morphological change and crystal structure of skeletal muscle actin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taniguchi, Mieko; Kamiya, Yoshihiro

    1983-04-01

    Actin from skeletal muscle was crystallized in fluorescent dye/acetone solutions. Three different polymorphic forms of the crystals were observed by polarization microscope and video system. Ultrastructural observation and electron diffraction analysis of the crystals have been made using a 1 MeV electron microscope. The specimens were unstained or negatively stained with uranyl acetate. The diffraction spots of the crystals faded within twenty seconds. Minimum dose system and low temperature techniques were effective in taking highly resolved images and diffraction patterns of the crystals. Actin crystals diffracted well to 2 Å resolution. The rod form of actin crystals is orthorhic and the cell dimensions are 61 Å × 41 Å × 33 Å. The unit cell contains one actin monomer.

  18. Nerve growth cone lamellipodia contain two populations of actin filaments that differ in organization and polarity

    PubMed Central

    1992-01-01

    The organization and polarity of actin filaments in neuronal growth cones was studied with negative stain and freeze-etch EM using a permeabilization protocol that caused little detectable change in morphology when cultured nerve growth cones were observed by video- enhanced differential interference contrast microscopy. The lamellipodial actin cytoskeleton was composed of two distinct subpopulations: a population of 40-100-nm-wide filament bundles radiated from the leading edge, and a second population of branching short filaments filled the volume between the dorsal and ventral membrane surfaces. Together, the two populations formed the three- dimensional structural network seen within expanding lamellipodia. Interaction of the actin filaments with the ventral membrane surface occurred along the length of the filaments via membrane associated proteins. The long bundled filament population was primarily involved in these interactions. The filament tips of either population appeared to interact with the membrane only at the leading edge; this interaction was mediated by a globular Triton-insoluble material. Actin filament polarity was determined by decoration with myosin S1 or heavy meromyosin. Previous reports have suggested that the polarity of the actin filaments in motile cells is uniform, with the barbed ends toward the leading edge. We observed that the actin filament polarity within growth cone lamellipodia is not uniform; although the predominant orientation was with the barbed end toward the leading edge (47-56%), 22-25% of the filaments had the opposite orientation with their pointed ends toward the leading edge, and 19-31% ran parallel to the leading edge. The two actin filament populations display distinct polarity profiles: the longer filaments appear to be oriented predominantly with their barbed ends toward the leading edge, whereas the short filaments appear to be randomly oriented. The different length, organization and polarity of the two filament

  19. Physical Model for Self-Organization of Actin Cytoskeleton and Adhesion Complexes at the Cell Front

    PubMed Central

    Shemesh, Tom; Bershadsky, Alexander D.; Kozlov, Michael M.

    2012-01-01

    Cell motion is driven by interplay between the actin cytoskeleton and the cell adhesions in the front part of the cell. The actin network segregates into lamellipodium and lamellum, whereas the adhesion complexes are characteristically distributed underneath the actin system. Here, we suggest a computational model for this characteristic organization of the actin-adhesion system. The model is based on the ability of the adhesion complexes to sense mechanical forces, the stick-slip character of the interaction between the adhesions and the moving actin network, and a hypothetical propensity of the actin network to disintegrate upon sufficiently strong stretching stresses. We identify numerically three possible types of system organization, all observed in living cells: two states in which the actin network exhibits segregation into lamellipodium and lamellum, whereas the cell edge either remains stationary or moves, and a state where the actin network does not undergo segregation. The model recovers the asynchronous fluctuations and outward bulging of the cell edge, and the dependence of the edge protrusion velocity on the rate of the nascent adhesion generation, the membrane tension, and the substrate rigidity. PMID:22768930

  20. Structure, chromosome location, and expression of the human. gamma. -actin gene: Differential evolution, location, and expression of the cytoskeletal BETA- and. gamma. -actin genes

    SciTech Connect

    Erba, H.P.; Eddy, R.; Shows, T.; Kedes, L.; Gunning, P.

    1988-04-01

    The accumulation of the cytoskeletal ..beta..-and ..gamma..-actin mRNAs was determined in a variety of mouse tissues and organs. The ..beta..-iosform is always expressed in excess of the ..gamma..-isoform. However, the molar ratio of ..beta..- to ..gamma..-actin mRNA varies from 1.7 in kidney and testis to 12 in sarcomeric muscle to 114 in liver. The authors conclude that, whereas the cytoskeletal ..beta..- and ..gamma..-actins are truly coexpressed, their mRNA levels are subject to differential regulation between different cell types. The human ..gamma..-actin gene has been cloned and sequenced, and its chromosome location has been determined. The gene is located on human chromosome 17, unlike ..beta..-actin which is on chromosome 7. Thus, if these genes are also unlinked in the mouse, the coexpression of the ..beta..- and ..gamma..-actin genes in rodent tissues cannot be determined by gene linkage. Comparison of the human ..beta..- and ..gamma..-actin genes reveals that noncoding sequences in the 5'-flanking region and in intron III have been conserved since the duplication that gave rise to these two genes. In contrast, there are sequences in intron III and the 3'-untranslated region which are not present in the ..beta..-actin gene but are conserved between the human ..gamma..-actin and the Xenopus borealis type 1 actin genes. Such conserved noncoding sequences may contribute to the coexpression of ..beta..- and ..gamma..-actin or to the unique regulation and function of the ..gamma..-actin gene. Finally, the authors demonstrate that the human ..gamma..-actin gene is expressed after introduction into mouse L cells and C2 myoblasts and that, upon fusion of C2 cells to form myotubes, the human ..gamma..-actin gene is appropriately regulated.

  1. Understanding the Social Networks That Form within the Context of an Obesity Prevention Intervention.

    PubMed

    Gesell, Sabina B; Bess, Kimberly D; Barkin, Shari L

    2012-01-01

    Background. Antiobesity interventions have generally failed. Research now suggests that interventions must be informed by an understanding of the social environment. Objective. To examine if new social networks form between families participating in a group-level pediatric obesity prevention trial. Methods. Latino parent-preschool child dyads (N = 79) completed the 3-month trial. The intervention met weekly in consistent groups to practice healthy lifestyles. The control met monthly in inconsistent groups to learn about school readiness. UCINET and SIENA were used to examine network dynamics. Results. Children's mean age was 4.2 years (SD = 0.9), and 44% were overweight/obese (BMI ≥ 85th percentile). Parents were predominantly mothers (97%), with a mean age of 31.4 years (SD = 5.4), and 81% were overweight/obese (BMI ≥ 25). Over the study, a new social network evolved among participating families. Parents selectively formed friendship ties based on child BMI z-score, (t = 2.08; P < .05). This reveals the tendency for mothers to form new friendships with mothers whose children have similar body types. Discussion. Participating in a group-level intervention resulted in new social network formation. New ties were greatest with mothers who had children of similar body types. This finding might contribute to the known inability of parents to recognize child overweight.

  2. F-actin reorganization upon de- and rehydration in the aeroterrestrial green alga Klebsormidium crenulatum.

    PubMed

    Blaas, Kathrin; Holzinger, Andreas

    2017-03-21

    Filamentous actin (F-actin) is a dynamic network involved in many cellular processes like cell division and cytoplasmic streaming. While many studies have addressed the involvement of F-actin in different cellular processes in cultured cells, little is known on the reactions to environmental stress scenarios, where this system might have essential regulatory functions. We investigated here the de- and rehydration kinetics of breakdown and reassembly of F-actin in the streptophyte green alga Klebsormidium crenulatum. Measurements of the chlorophyll fluorescence (effective quantum yield of photosystem II [ΔF/Fm']) via pulse amplitude modulation were performed as a measure for dehydration induced shut down of physiological activity, which ceased after 141±15min at ∼84% RH. We hypothesized that there is a link between this physiological parameter and the status of the F-actin system. Indeed, 20min of dehydration (ΔF/Fm'=0) leads to a breakdown of the fine cortical F-actin network as visualized by Atto 488 phalloidin staining, and dot-like structures remained. Already 10min after rehydration a beginning reassembly of F-actin is observed, after 25min the F-actin network appeared similar to untreated controls, indicating a full recovery. These results demonstrate the fast kinetics of F-actin dis- and reassembly likely contributing to cellular reorganization upon rehydration.

  3. Ring closure in actin polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sinha, Supurna; Chattopadhyay, Sebanti

    2017-03-01

    We present an analysis for the ring closure probability of semiflexible polymers within the pure bend Worm Like Chain (WLC) model. The ring closure probability predicted from our analysis can be tested against fluorescent actin cyclization experiments. We also discuss the effect of ring closure on bend angle fluctuations in actin polymers.

  4. Expression of constitutively active Akt/protein kinase B signals GLUT4 translocation in the absence of an intact actin cytoskeleton.

    PubMed

    Eyster, Craig A; Duggins, Quwanza S; Olson, Ann Louise

    2005-05-06

    The actin cytoskeleton has been shown to be required for insulin-dependent GLUT4 translocation; however, the role that the actin network plays is unknown. Actin may play a role in formation of an active signaling complex, or actin may be required for movement of vesicles to the plasma membrane surface. To distinguish between these possibilities, we examined the ability of myr-Akt, a constitutively active form of Akt that signals GLUT4 translocation to the plasma membrane in the absence of insulin, to signal translocation of an HA-GLUT4-GFP reporter protein in the presence or absence of an intact cytoskeleton in 3T3-L1 adipocytes. Expression of myr-Akt signaled the redistribution of the GLUT4 reporter protein to the cell surface in the absence or presence of 10 microm latrunculin B, a concentration sufficient to completely inhibit insulin-dependent redistribution of the GLUT4 reporter to the cell surface. These data suggest that the actin network plays a primary role in organization of the insulin-signaling complex. To further support this conclusion, we measured the activation of known signaling proteins using a saturating concentration of insulin in cells pretreated without or with 10 microm latrunculin B. We found that latrunculin treatment did not affect insulin-dependent tyrosine phosphorylation of the insulin receptor beta-subunit and IRS-1 but completely inhibited activation of Akt/PKB enzymatic activity. Phosphorylation of Akt/PKB at Ser-473 and Thr-308 was inhibited by latrunculin B treatment, indicating that the defect in signaling lies prior to Akt/PKB activation. In summary, our data support the hypothesis that the actin network plays a role in organization of the insulin-signaling complex but is not required for vesicle trafficking and/or fusion.

  5. SWAP70 Organizes the Actin Cytoskeleton and Is Essential for Phagocytosis.

    PubMed

    Baranov, Maksim V; Revelo, Natalia H; Dingjan, Ilse; Maraspini, Riccardo; Ter Beest, Martin; Honigmann, Alf; van den Bogaart, Geert

    2016-11-01

    Actin plays a critical role during the early stages of pathogenic microbe internalization by immune cells. In this study, we identified a key mechanism of actin filament tethering and stabilization to the surface of phagosomes in human dendritic cells. We found that the actin-binding protein SWAP70 is specifically recruited to nascent phagosomes by binding to the lipid phosphatidylinositol (3,4)-bisphosphate. Multi-color super-resolution stimulated emission depletion (STED) microscopy revealed that the actin cage surrounding early phagosomes is formed by multiple concentric rings containing SWAP70. SWAP70 colocalized with and stimulated activation of RAC1, a known activator of actin polymerization, on phagosomes. Genetic ablation of SWAP70 impaired actin polymerization around phagosomes and resulted in a phagocytic defect. These data show a key role for SWAP70 as a scaffold for tethering the peripheral actin cage to phagosomes.

  6. A Gly65Val substitution in an actin, GhACT_LI1, disrupts cell polarity and membrane anchoring of F-actin resulting in dwarf, lintless Li1 cotton plants

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Actin polymerizes to form the cytoskeleton and organize polar growth in all eukaryotic cells. Species with numerous actin genes are especially useful for the dissection of actin molecular function due to redundancy and neofunctionalization. Here, we investigated the role of a cotton (Gossypium hi...

  7. Structure, dynamics and multiple length-scales in network-forming materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilson, Mark

    2016-07-01

    Relationships between the structural and dynamical properties of network-forming materials are investigated. A generic model is utilised for systems of stoichiometry MX2 which are linked in the sense that they can all be usefully considered as constructed from linked MX4 tetrahedra. A single model parameter (the anion polarizability) is varied systematically to control the mean MXM bond angles (and hence the network topologies). The networks evolve from those dominated by corner-sharing units to those dominated by edge-sharing structural motifs. These changes are accompanied by changes in the characteristic length-scales, with the emergence of ordering on intermediate length-scales. Key dynamical properties (the liquid relaxation just above the melting point and the liquid fragility) are studied and their relationship to the underlying static structure analysed.

  8. Pressure-driven transformation of the ordering in amorphous network-forming materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zeidler, Anita; Salmon, Philip S.

    2016-06-01

    The pressure-induced changes to the structure of disordered oxide and chalcogenide network-forming materials are investigated on the length scales associated with the first three peaks in measured diffraction patterns. The density dependence of a given peak position does not yield the network dimensionality, in contrast to metallic glasses where the results indicate a fractal geometry with a local dimensionality of ≃5 /2 . For oxides, a common relation is found between the intermediate-range ordering, as described by the position of the first sharp diffraction peak, and the oxygen-packing fraction, a parameter that plays a key role in driving changes to the coordination number of local motifs. The first sharp diffraction peak can therefore be used to gauge when topological changes are likely to occur, events that transform network structures and their related physical properties.

  9. Human Inspired Self-developmental Model of Neural Network (HIM): Introducing Content/Form Computing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krajíček, Jiří

    This paper presents cross-disciplinary research between medical/psychological evidence on human abilities and informatics needs to update current models in computer science to support alternative methods for computation and communication. In [10] we have already proposed hypothesis introducing concept of human information model (HIM) as cooperative system. Here we continue on HIM design in detail. In our design, first we introduce Content/Form computing system which is new principle of present methods in evolutionary computing (genetic algorithms, genetic programming). Then we apply this system on HIM (type of artificial neural network) model as basic network self-developmental paradigm. Main inspiration of our natural/human design comes from well known concept of artificial neural networks, medical/psychological evidence and Sheldrake theory of "Nature as Alive" [22].

  10. Prediction of the acoustic form function by neural network techniques for immersed tubes.

    PubMed

    Dariouchy, A; Aassif, E; Maze, G; Décultot, D; Moudden, A

    2008-08-01

    A new approach is used to predict the acoustic form function (FF) for an infinite length cylindrical shell excited perpendicularly to its axis using the artificial neural network (ANN) techniques. The Wigner-Ville distribution is used like a comparison tool between the FF calculated by the analytical method and that predicted by the ANN techniques for a stainless steel tube. During the development of the network, several configurations are evaluated for various radius ratios ba (a: outer radius: b: inner radius of the tube). The optimal model is a network with one hidden layer. It is able to predict the FF with a mean relative error about 1.61% for the cases studied in this paper.

  11. The Drosophila javelin Gene Encodes a Novel Actin-Associated Protein Required for Actin Assembly in the Bristle ▿

    PubMed Central

    Shapira, Shira; Bakhrat, Anna; Bitan, Amir; Abdu, Uri

    2011-01-01

    The Drosophila melanogaster bristle is a highly polarized cell that builds specialized cytoskeletal structures. Whereas actin is required for increasing bristle length, microtubules are essential for bristle axial growth. To identify new proteins involved in cytoskeleton organization during bristle development, we focused on identifying and characterizing the javelin (jv) locus. We found that in a jv mutant, the bristle tip is swollen and abnormal organization of bristle grooves is seen over the entire bristle. Using confocal and electron microscopy, we found that in jv mutant bristles, actin bundles do not form properly due to a loss of actin filaments within the bundle. We show that jv is an allele of the predicted CG32397 gene that encodes a protein with no homologs outside insects. Expression of the Jv protein fused to a green fluorescent protein (GFP) shows that the protein is colocalized with actin bundles in the bristle. Moreover, expression of Jv-GFP within the germ line led to the formation of ectopic actin bundles that surround the nucleus of nurse cells. Thus, we report that Jv is a novel actin-associated protein required for actin assembly during Drosophila bristle development. PMID:21930794

  12. Myosin light chain kinase-regulated endothelial cell contraction: the relationship between isometric tension, actin polymerization, and myosin phosphorylation

    PubMed Central

    1995-01-01

    myosin II undergoes striking reorganization. F- actin initially forms a fine network of filaments that fills the cytoplasm and then reorganizes into prominent stress fibers. Myosin II rapidly forms discrete aggregates associated with the actin network and by 2.5 min assumes a distinct periodic distribution along the stress fibers. PMID:7622562

  13. Interactions of actin, myosin, and a new actin-binding protein of rabbit pulmonary macrophages. II. Role in cytoplasmic movement and phagocytosis.

    PubMed

    Stossel, T P; Hartwig, J H

    1976-03-01

    Actin and myosin of rabbit pulmonary macrophages are influenced by two other proteins. A protein cofactor is required for the actin activation of macrophage myosin Mg2 ATPase activity, and a high molecular weight actin-binding protein aggregates actin filaments (Stossel T.P., and J.H. Hartwig. 1975. J. Biol. Chem. 250:5706-5711)9 When warmed in 0.34 M sucrose solution containing Mg2-ATP and dithiothreitol, these four proteins interact cooperatively. Acin-binding protein in the presence of actin causes the actin to form a gel, which liquifies when cooled. The myosin contracts the gel into an aggregate, and the rate of aggregation is accelerated by the cofactor. Therefore, we believe that these four proteins also effec the temperature-dependent gelation and aggregation of crude sucrose extracts pulmonary macrophages containing Mg2-ATP and dithiothreitol. The gelled extracts are composed of tangled filaments. Relative to homogenates of resting macrophages, the distribution of actin-binding protein in homogenates of phagocytizing macrophages is altered such that 2-6 times more actin-binding protein is soluble. Sucrose extracts of phagocytizing macrophages gel more rapidly than extracts of resting macrophages. Phagocytosis by pulmonary macrophages involves the formation of peripheral pseudopods containing filaments. The findings suggest that the actin-binding protein initiates a cooperative interaction of contractile proteins to generate cytoplasmic gelation, and that phagocytosis influences the behavior of the actin-binding protein.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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)

  15. Myopathy mutations in alpha-skeletal-muscle actin cause a range of molecular defects.

    PubMed

    Costa, Céline F; Rommelaere, Heidi; Waterschoot, Davy; Sethi, Kamaljit K; Nowak, Kristen J; Laing, Nigel G; Ampe, Christophe; Machesky, Laura M

    2004-07-01

    Mutations in the gene encoding alpha-skeletal-muscle actin, ACTA1, cause congenital myopathies of various phenotypes that have been studied since their discovery in 1999. Although much is now known about the clinical aspects of myopathies resulting from over 60 different ACTA1 mutations, we have very little evidence for how mutations alter the behavior of the actin protein and thus lead to disease. We used a combination of biochemical and cell biological analysis to classify 19 myopathy mutants and found a range of defects in the actin. Using in vitro expression systems, we probed actin folding and actin's capacity to interact with actin-binding proteins and polymerization. Only two mutants failed to fold; these represent recessive alleles, causing severe myopathy, indicating that patients produce nonfunctional actin. Four other mutants bound tightly to cyclase-associated protein, indicating a possible instability in the nucleotide-binding pocket, and formed rods and aggregates in cells. Eleven mutants showed defects in the ability to co-polymerize with wild-type actin. Some of these could incorporate into normal actin structures in NIH 3T3 fibroblasts, but two of the three tested also formed aggregates. Four mutants showed no defect in vitro but two of these formed aggregates in cells, indicating functional defects that we have not yet tested for. Overall, we found a range of defects and behaviors of the mutants in vitro and in cultured cells, paralleling the complexity of actin-based muscle myopathy phenotypes.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  17. Transport along freely suspended actin cortex models in a controlled microfluidic environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schulz, Simon; Haraszti, Tamas; Roos, Wouter; Schmitz, Christian; Ulmer, Jens; Graeter, Stefan; Spatz, Joachim P.

    2006-03-01

    Arrays of microfabricated pillars are constructed to serve as a template for mimicking the actin cortex of cells. The three-dimensional template surface prevents interaction of the actin filaments hanging between pillars. A special flow-cell design enables applying flow around a network of actin freely suspended between polydimethylsiloxane pillars. This opens new possibilities to study the mechanics of two-dimensional actin networks as a function of actin-crosslinkers, to observe the active diffusion of molecular motors operating on pending networks and to investigate the alternations in the transport of microscopic particles, coated by different proteins and molecular motors, along these actin cortex models under the drag of flow. The stiffness of the F-actin can be tuned by bundling through various cross-linkers. Additionally, actin filaments act as tracks for guiding passive and active transport of cargo such as organelles or microspheres by molecular motors like myosin-V. These transport problems are biomimetic studies of tracks and external driving force on a statistical process of two-dimensional networks isolated from the complicated and undetermined cellular environment.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-04-01

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

  19. The study of diffusion mechanism in network-forming liquid: Silica liquid

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hung, P. K.; Vinh, L. T.; Ba Van, To; Thu Ha, N. T.

    2016-12-01

    Molecular dynamics simulation is employed to investigate the diffusion mechanism in silica melt, a typical network-forming liquid. From the analysis of SiOx→SiOx±1 and OSiy→OSiy±1 reactions we reveal two moving modes: fast hopping and slow collective moving. Accordingly the atoms diffuse in the melt by simple hopping or through displacing of super-molecule (SM). A cluster analysis is performed for several of atom sets. It is shown that the melt exhibits non-uniform spatial distribution of reaction which causes the dynamics heterogeneity (DH). Further, the network structure of the melt consists of main subnet and large defective subnets. These subnets differ strongly in local environment, chemical composition and atomic density. This result evidences two distinct phases, the structure heterogeneity in silica melt and supports the polymorphism of network-forming liquid. We also find out that the node transformation spreads non-uniformly through the network structure. It takes place mainly in large defective subnet. The strong localization of node transformation is responsible for dynamical slowdown.

  20. Accelerated actin filament polymerization from microtubule plus-ends

    PubMed Central

    Henty-Ridilla, Jessica L.; Rankova, Aneliya; Eskin, Julian A.; Kenny, Katelyn; Goode, Bruce L.

    2016-01-01

    Microtubules govern actin network remodeling in a wide range of biological processes, yet the mechanisms underlying this cytoskeletal crosstalk have remained obscure. Here we used single-molecule fluorescence microscopy to show that the microtubule plus-end associated protein CLIP-170 binds tightly to formins to accelerate actin filament elongation. Furthermore, we observed mDia1 dimers and CLIP-170 dimers co-tracking growing filament ends for minutes. CLIP-170-mDia1 complexes promoted actin polymerization approximately 18 times faster than free barbed end growth, while simultaneously enhancing protection from capping protein. We used a microtubule-actin dynamics co-reconstitution system to observe CLIP-170-mDia1 complexes being recruited to growing microtubule ends by EB1. The complexes triggered rapid growth of actin filaments that remained attached to the microtubule surface. These activities of CLIP-170 were required in primary neurons for normal dendritic morphology. Thus, our results reveal a cellular mechanism whereby growing microtubule plus-ends direct rapid actin assembly. PMID:27199431

  1. A finite-temperature Monte Carlo algorithm for network forming materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vink, Richard L. C.

    2014-03-01

    Computer simulations of structure formation in network forming materials (such as amorphous semiconductors, glasses, or fluids containing hydrogen bonds) are challenging. The problem is that large structural changes in the network topology are rare events, making it very difficult to equilibrate these systems. To overcome this problem, Wooten, Winer, and Weaire [Phys. Rev. Lett. 54, 1392 (1985)] proposed a Monte Carlo bond-switch move, constructed to alter the network topology at every step. The resulting algorithm is well suited to study networks at zero temperature. However, since thermal fluctuations are ignored, it cannot be used to probe the phase behavior at finite temperature. In this paper, a modification of the original bond-switch move is proposed, in which detailed balance and ergodicity are both obeyed, thereby facilitating a correct sampling of the Boltzmann distribution for these systems at any finite temperature. The merits of the modified algorithm are demonstrated in a detailed investigation of the melting transition in a two-dimensional 3-fold coordinated network.

  2. Raman Spectroscopic Studies of the High Pressure Behavior of Network Forming Tetrahedral Oxide Glasses.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Durben, Daniel John

    The ambient temperature structural and vibrational properties of a series of network forming tetrahedral oxide glasses have been investigated as a function of pressure with Raman spectroscopy. Glass samples were chosen to examine a range of network structures, from the fully polymerized GeO_2, to the partially depolymerized alkali tetrasilicates and disilicates, to the fully depolymerized forsterite. The Raman data suggest that fully polymerized oxide glass structures undergo network cation coordination changes in response to extreme compression through the involvement of bridging oxygens, without requiring bond breaking reactions. Spectral changes observed in partially depolymerized network glass structures are consistent with an increase in Si coordination during compression at the expense of nonbridging oxygens. The pressure range over which the coordination change occurs appears to be controlled by the size and concentration of alkali cations in the structure and depends on a balance between the competing beta-state conversion mechanism at low alkali content and steric considerations at higher alkali content. High pressure structural changes are largely reversible upon decompression, albeit with a large hysteresis. However, the spectra suggest that the breakup of the high coordinated network during the backtransformation to tetrahedral Si coordination occurs without a memory of the original Q -speciation or Si-O ring distribution. Thus, the backtransformation to low coordinated species upon decompression, occurring while the glass is compacted, favors a redistribution of Q-species and ring statistics relative to the original ambient structure.

  3. Synergistic Physical Properties of Co-Cured Networks Formed from Di- and Tri-cyanate Esters

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-09-01

    Guenthner , Josiah T. Reams, Kevin R. Lamison, Sean M. Ramirez David D. Swanson, Gregory R. Yandek, Christopher M. Sahagun Matthew C. Davis Joseph M...Co-Cured Networks Formed from Di- and Tri-cyanate Esters” Andrew J. Guenthner * 1 , Josiah T. Reams 2 , Kevin R. Lamison 2 , Sean M. Ramirez 2... Guenthner , A. J.; Groshens, T. J.; Reams, J. T.; Mabry, J. M., J. Polym. Sci. Part A, Polym. Chem. 2012, 50, 4127-4136. S2. Guenthner , A. J.; Davis, M

  4. Coactosin-like protein, a human F-actin-binding protein: critical role of lysine-75.

    PubMed Central

    Provost, P; Doucet, J; Stock, A; Gerisch, G; Samuelsson, B; Rådmark, O

    2001-01-01

    Coactosin-like protein (CLP) was recently identified in a yeast two-hybrid screen using 5-lipoxygenase as bait. In the present study, we report the functional characterization of CLP as a human filamentous actin (F-actin)-binding protein. CLP mRNA shows a wide tissue distribution and is predominantly expressed in placenta, lung, kidney and peripheral-blood leucocytes. Endogenous CLP is localized in the cytosol of myeloid cells. Using a two-hybrid approach, actin was identified as a CLP-interacting protein. Binding experiments indicated that CLP associates with F-actin, but does not form a stable complex with globular actin. In transfected mammalian cells, CLP co-localized with actin stress fibres. CLP bound to actin filaments with a stoichiometry of 1:2 (CLP: actin subunits), but could be cross-linked to only one subunit of actin. Site-directed mutagenesis revealed the involvement of Lys(75) of CLP in actin binding, a residue highly conserved in related proteins and supposed to be exposed on the surface of the CLP protein. Our results identify CLP as a new human protein that binds F-actin in vitro and in vivo, and indicate that Lys(75) is essential for this interaction. PMID:11583571

  5. Recruitment Kinetics of Tropomyosin Tpm3.1 to Actin Filament Bundles in the Cytoskeleton Is Independent of Actin Filament Kinetics

    PubMed Central

    Appaduray, Mark A.; Masedunskas, Andrius; Lucas, Christine A.; Warren, Sean C.; Timpson, Paul; Stear, Jeffrey H.

    2016-01-01

    The actin cytoskeleton is a dynamic network of filaments that is involved in virtually every cellular process. Most actin filaments in metazoa exist as a co-polymer of actin and tropomyosin (Tpm) and the function of an actin filament is primarily defined by the specific Tpm isoform associated with it. However, there is little information on the interdependence of these co-polymers during filament assembly and disassembly. We addressed this by investigating the recovery kinetics of fluorescently tagged isoform Tpm3.1 into actin filament bundles using FRAP analysis in cell culture and in vivo in rats using intracellular intravital microscopy, in the presence or absence of the actin-targeting drug jasplakinolide. The mobile fraction of Tpm3.1 is between 50% and 70% depending on whether the tag is at the C- or N-terminus and whether the analysis is in vivo or in cultured cells. We find that the continuous dynamic exchange of Tpm3.1 is not significantly impacted by jasplakinolide, unlike tagged actin. We conclude that tagged Tpm3.1 may be able to undergo exchange in actin filament bundles largely independent of the assembly and turnover of actin. PMID:27977753

  6. Nanosecond electric pulses trigger actin responses in plant cells

    SciTech Connect

    Berghoefer, 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.

  7. Measuring actin dynamics during phagocytosis using photo-switchable fluorescence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kovari, Daniel T.; Curtis, Jennifer E.

    2013-03-01

    Phagocytosis has traditionally been investigated in terms of the relevant biochemical signaling pathways. However, a growing number of studies investigating the physical aspects of phagocytosis have demonstrated that several distinct forces are exerted throughout particle ingestion. We use variations on FRAP (Fluorescence Recovery After Photobleaching) in combination with photo-switchable fluorescent protein to investigate actin dynamics as a phagocyte attempts to engulf its prey. The goal of our actin studies are to determine the recruitment and polymerization rate of actin in the forming phagosome and whether an organized contractile actin ring is present and responsible for phagosome closure, as proposed in the literature. These experiments are ongoing and contribute to our long term effort of developing a physics based model of phagocytosis.

  8. Actin cytoskeleton: putting a CAP on actin polymerization.

    PubMed

    Stevenson, V A; Theurkauf, W E

    2000-10-05

    Two recent studies have identified a Drosophila homolog of cyclase-associated protein (CAP) as a developmentally important negative regulator of actin polymerization that may also directly mediate signal transduction.

  9. Formins: Actin nucleators that regulate cytoskeletal dynamics during spermatogenesis

    PubMed Central

    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. PMID:26413414

  10. Formins: Actin nucleators that regulate cytoskeletal dynamics during spermatogenesis.

    PubMed

    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.

  11. Maleimidobenzoyl-G-actin: Structural properties and interaction with skeletal myosin subfragment-1

    SciTech Connect

    Bettache, N.; Bertrand, R.; Kassab, R. )

    1990-09-25

    The authors have investigated various structural and interaction properties of maleimidobenzoyl-G-actin (MBS-actin), a new, internally cross-linked G-actin derivative that does not exhibit, at moderate protein concentration, the salt-and myosin subfragment 1 (S-1)--induced polymerizations of G-actin and reacts reversibly and covalently in solution with S-1 at or near the F-actin binding region of the heavy chain. The far-ultraviolet CD spectrum and {alpha}-helix content of the MBS-actin were identical with those displayed by native G-actin. {sup 45}Ca{sup 2+} measurements showed the same content of tightly bound Ca{sup 2+} in MBS-actin as in G-actin and the EDTA treatment of the modified protein promoted the same red shift of the intrinsic fluorescence spectrum as observed with native G-actin. Incubation of concentrated MBS-actin solutions with 100 mM KCl+5 mM MgCl{sub 2} led to the polymerization of the actin derivative when the critical monomer concentration reached 1.6mg/mL, at 25{degree}C, pH 8.0. The MBS-F-actin formed activated the Mg{sup 2+}-ATPase of S-1 to the same extent as native F-actin. The MBS-G-actin exhibited a DNase I inhibitor activity very close to that found with native G-actin and was to be at all affected by its specific covalent conjugation to S-1. This finding led them to isolate, for the first time, by gel filtration, a ternary complex comprising DNase I tightly bound to MBS-actin cross-linked to the S-1 heavy chain, demonstrating that S-1 and DNase I bind at distinct sites on G-actin. Collectively, the data illustrate further the nativeness of the MBS-G-actin and its potential use in solution studies of the actin-myosin head interactions.

  12. Formin' actin in the nucleus.

    PubMed

    Baarlink, Christian; Grosse, Robert

    2014-01-01

    Many if not most proteins can, under certain conditions, change cellular compartments, such as, for example, shuttling from the cytoplasm to the nucleus. Thus, many proteins may exert functions in various and very different subcellular locations, depending on the signaling context. A large amount of actin regulatory proteins has been detected in the mammalian cell nucleus, although their potential roles are much debated and are just beginning to emerge. Recently, members of the formin family of actin nucleators were also reported to dynamically localize to the nuclear environment. Here we discuss our findings that specific diaphanous-related formins can promote nuclear actin assembly in a signal-dependent manner.

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

    PubMed Central

    Nobezawa, Daisuke; Ikeda, Sho-ichi; Wada, Eitaro; Nagano, Takashi

    2017-01-01

    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. PMID:28246604

  14. Dual pools of actin at presynaptic terminals.

    PubMed

    Bleckert, Adam; Photowala, Huzefa; Alford, Simon

    2012-06-01

    We investigated actin's function in vesicle recycling and exocytosis at lamprey synapses and show that FM1-43 puncta and phalloidin-labeled filamentous actin (F-actin) structures are colocalized, yet recycling vesicles are not contained within F-actin clusters. Additionally, phalloidin also labels a plasma membrane-associated cortical actin. Injection of fluorescent G-actin revealed activity-independent dynamic actin incorporation into presynaptic synaptic vesicle clusters but not into cortical actin. Latrunculin-A, which sequesters G-actin, dispersed vesicle-associated actin structures and prevented subsequent labeled G-actin and phalloidin accumulation at presynaptic puncta, yet cortical phalloidin labeling persisted. Dispersal of presynaptic F-actin structures by latrunculin-A did not disrupt vesicle clustering or recycling or alter the amplitude or kinetics of excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs). However, it slightly enhanced release during repetitive stimulation. While dispersal of presynaptic actin puncta with latrunculin-A failed to disperse synaptic vesicles or inhibit synaptic transmission, presynaptic phalloidin injection blocked exocytosis and reduced endocytosis measured by action potential-evoked FM1-43 staining. Furthermore, phalloidin stabilization of only cortical actin following pretreatment with latrunculin-A was sufficient to inhibit synaptic transmission. Conversely, treatment of axons with jasplakinolide, which induces F-actin accumulation but disrupts F-actin structures in vivo, resulted in increased synaptic transmission accompanied by a loss of phalloidin labeling of cortical actin but no loss of actin labeling within vesicle clusters. Marked synaptic deficits seen with phalloidin stabilization of cortical F-actin, in contrast to the minimal effects of disruption of a synaptic vesicle-associated F-actin, led us to conclude that two structurally and functionally distinct pools of actin exist at presynaptic sites.

  15. Long-range conformational effects of proteolytic removal of the last three residues of actin.

    PubMed Central

    Strzelecka-Gołaszewska, H; Mossakowska, M; Woźniak, A; Moraczewska, J; Nakayama, H

    1995-01-01

    Truncated derivatives of actin devoid of either the last two (actin-2C) or three residues (actin-3C) were used to study the role of the C-terminal segment in the polymerization of actin. The monomer critical concentration and polymerization rate increased in the order: intact actin < actin-2C < actin-3C. Conversely, the rate of hydrolysis of actin-bound ATP during spontaneous polymerization of Mg-actin decreased in the same order, so that, for actin-3C, the ATP hydrolysis significantly lagged behind the polymer growth. Probing the conformation of the nucleotide site in the monomer form by measuring the rates of the bound nucleotide exchange revealed a similar change upon removal of either the two or three residues from the C-terminus. The C-terminal truncation also resulted in a slight decrease in the rate of subtilisin cleavage of monomeric actin within the DNAse-I binding loop, whereas in F-actin subunits the susceptibility of this and of another site within this loop, specifically cleaved by a proteinase from Escherichia coli A2 strain, gradually increased upon sequential removal of the two and of the third residue from the C-terminus. From these and other observations made in this work it has been concluded that perturbation of the C-terminal structure in monomeric actin is transmitted to the cleft, where nucleotide and bivalent cation are bound, and to the DNAse-I binding loop on the top of subdomain 2. Further changes at these sites, observed on the polymer level, seem to result from elimination of the intersubunit contact between the C-terminal residues and the DNAse-I binding loop. It is suggested that formation of this contact plays an essential role in regulating the hydrolysis of actin-bound ATP associated with the polymerization process. Images Figure 5 Figure 6 Figure 8 PMID:7733893

  16. [Photodynamic therapy for actinic cheilitis].

    PubMed

    Castaño, E; Comunión, A; Arias, D; Miñano, R; Romero, A; Borbujo, J

    2009-12-01

    Actinic cheilitis is a subtype of actinic keratosis that mainly affects the lower lip and has a higher risk of malignant transformation. Its location on the labial mucosa influences the therapeutic approach. Vermilionectomy requires local or general anesthetic and is associated with a risk of an unsightly scar, and the treatment with 5-fluorouracil or imiquimod lasts for several weeks and the inflammatory reaction can be very intense. A number of authors have used photodynamic therapy as an alternative to the usual treatments. We present 3 patients with histologically confirmed actinic cheilitis treated using photodynamic therapy with methyl aminolevulinic acid as the photosensitizer and red light at 630 nm. The clinical response was good, with no recurrences after 3 to 6 months of follow-up. Our experience supports the use of photodynamic therapy as a good alternative for the treatment of actinic cheilitis.

  17. Distribution of actin of the human erythrocyte membrane cytoskeleton after interaction with radiographic contrast media.

    PubMed

    Franke, R P; Scharnweber, T; Fuhrmann, R; Krüger, A; Wenzel, F; Mrowietz, C; Jung, F

    2013-01-01

    A type-dependent chemotoxic effect of radiographic contrast media on erythrocytes and endothelial cells was reported several times. While mechanisms of toxicity are still unclear the cellular reactions e.g. echinocyte formation in erythrocytes and the buckling of endothelial cells coincided with deterioration of capillary perfusion (in patients with coronary artery disease) and tissue oxygen tension (in the myocardium of pigs). Whether the shape changes in erythrocytes coincide with changes in the arrangement of actin, the core of the actin-spectrin cytoskeletal network and possible actor in membrane stresses and deformation is not known until now. To get specific informations actin was stained using two different staining methods (antibodies to β-actin staining oligomeric G-actin and polymeric F-actin and Phalloidin-Rhodamin staining polymeric F-actin only). In addition, an advanced version of confocal laser scanning microscopes was used enabling the display of the actin arrangement near substrate surfaces. Blood smears were produced after erythrocyte suspension in autologous plasma or in two different plasma/RCM mixtures. In this study an even homogenous distribution of fine grained globular actin in the normal human erythrocyte could be demonstrated. After suspension of erythrocytes in a plasma/Iodixanol mixture an increased number of membrane protrusions appeared densely filled with intensely stained actin similar to cells suspended in autologous plasma, however, there in less numbers. Suspension in Iopromide, in contrast, induced a complete reorganization of the cytoskeletal actin: the fine grained globular actin distribution disappeared and only few, long and thick actin filaments bundled and possibly polymerized appeared, instead, shown here for the first time.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  19. Feeling for Filaments: Quantification of the Cortical Actin Web in Live Vascular Endothelium

    PubMed Central

    Kronlage, Cornelius; Schäfer-Herte, Marco; Böning, Daniel; Oberleithner, Hans; Fels, Johannes

    2015-01-01

    Contact-mode atomic force microscopy (AFM) has been shown to reveal cortical actin structures. Using live endothelial cells, we visualized cortical actin dynamics simultaneously by AFM and confocal fluorescence microscopy. We present a method that quantifies dynamic changes in the mechanical ultrastructure of the cortical actin web. We argue that the commonly used, so-called error signal imaging in AFM allows a qualitative, but not quantitative, analysis of cortical actin dynamics. The approach we used comprises fast force-curve-based topography imaging and subsequent image processing that enhances local height differences. Dynamic changes in the organization of the cytoskeleton network can be observed and quantified by surface roughness calculations and automated morphometrics. Upon treatment with low concentrations of the actin-destabilizing agent cytochalasin D, the cortical cytoskeleton network is thinned out and the average mesh size increases. In contrast, jasplakinolide, a drug that enhances actin polymerization, consolidates the cytoskeleton network and reduces the average mesh area. In conclusion, cortical actin dynamics can be quantified in live cells. To our knowledge, this opens a new pathway for conducting quantitative structure-function analyses of the endothelial actin web just beneath the apical plasma membrane. PMID:26287621

  20. New single-molecule speckle microscopy reveals modification of the retrograde actin flow by focal adhesions at nanometer scales.

    PubMed

    Yamashiro, Sawako; Mizuno, Hiroaki; Smith, Matthew B; Ryan, Gillian L; Kiuchi, Tai; Vavylonis, Dimitrios; Watanabe, Naoki

    2014-04-01

    Speckle microscopy directly visualizes the retrograde actin flow, which is believed to promote cell-edge protrusion when linked to focal adhesions (FAs). However, it has been argued that, due to rapid actin turnover, the use of green fluorescent protein-actin, the lack of appropriate analysis algorithms, and technical difficulties, speckle microscopy does not necessarily report the flow velocities of entire actin populations. In this study, we developed a new, user-friendly single-molecule speckle (SiMS) microscopy using DyLight dye-labeled actin. Our new SiMS method enables in vivo nanometer-scale displacement analysis with a low localization error of ±8-8.5 nm, allowing accurate flow-velocity measurement for actin speckles with lifetime <5 s. In lamellipodia, both short- and long-lived F-actin molecules flow with the same speed, indicating they are part of a single actin network. These results do not support coexistence of F-actin populations with different flow speeds, which is referred to as the lamella hypothesis. Mature FAs, but not nascent adhesions, locally obstruct the retrograde flow. Interestingly, the actin flow in front of mature FAs is fast and biased toward FAs, suggesting that mature FAs attract the flow in front and actively remodel the local actin network.

  1. New single-molecule speckle microscopy reveals modification of the retrograde actin flow by focal adhesions at nanometer scales

    PubMed Central

    Yamashiro, Sawako; Mizuno, Hiroaki; Smith, Matthew B.; Ryan, Gillian L.; Kiuchi, Tai; Vavylonis, Dimitrios; Watanabe, Naoki

    2014-01-01

    Speckle microscopy directly visualizes the retrograde actin flow, which is believed to promote cell-edge protrusion when linked to focal adhesions (FAs). However, it has been argued that, due to rapid actin turnover, the use of green fluorescent protein–actin, the lack of appropriate analysis algorithms, and technical difficulties, speckle microscopy does not necessarily report the flow velocities of entire actin populations. In this study, we developed a new, user-friendly single-molecule speckle (SiMS) microscopy using DyLight dye-labeled actin. Our new SiMS method enables in vivo nanometer-scale displacement analysis with a low localization error of ±8–8.5 nm, allowing accurate flow-velocity measurement for actin speckles with lifetime <5 s. In lamellipodia, both short- and long-lived F-actin molecules flow with the same speed, indicating they are part of a single actin network. These results do not support coexistence of F-actin populations with different flow speeds, which is referred to as the lamella hypothesis. Mature FAs, but not nascent adhesions, locally obstruct the retrograde flow. Interestingly, the actin flow in front of mature FAs is fast and biased toward FAs, suggesting that mature FAs attract the flow in front and actively remodel the local actin network. PMID:24501425

  2. Interneurons and oligodendrocyte progenitors form a structured synaptic network in the developing neocortex.

    PubMed

    Orduz, David; Maldonado, Paloma P; Balia, Maddalena; Vélez-Fort, Mateo; de Sars, Vincent; Yanagawa, Yuchio; Emiliani, Valentina; Angulo, Maria Cecilia

    2015-04-22

    NG2 cells, oligodendrocyte progenitors, receive a major synaptic input from interneurons in the developing neocortex. It is presumed that these precursors integrate cortical networks where they act as sensors of neuronal activity. We show that NG2 cells of the developing somatosensory cortex form a transient and structured synaptic network with interneurons that follows its own rules of connectivity. Fast-spiking interneurons, highly connected to NG2 cells, target proximal subcellular domains containing GABAA receptors with γ2 subunits. Conversely, non-fast-spiking interneurons, poorly connected with these progenitors, target distal sites lacking this subunit. In the network, interneuron-NG2 cell connectivity maps exhibit a local spatial arrangement reflecting innervation only by the nearest interneurons. This microcircuit architecture shows a connectivity peak at PN10, coinciding with a switch to massive oligodendrocyte differentiation. Hence, GABAergic innervation of NG2 cells is temporally and spatially regulated from the subcellular to the network level in coordination with the onset of oligodendrogenesis.

  3. Interneurons and oligodendrocyte progenitors form a structured synaptic network in the developing neocortex

    PubMed Central

    Orduz, David; Maldonado, Paloma P; Balia, Maddalena; Vélez-Fort, Mateo; de Sars, Vincent; Yanagawa, Yuchio; Emiliani, Valentina; Angulo, Maria Cecilia

    2015-01-01

    NG2 cells, oligodendrocyte progenitors, receive a major synaptic input from interneurons in the developing neocortex. It is presumed that these precursors integrate cortical networks where they act as sensors of neuronal activity. We show that NG2 cells of the developing somatosensory cortex form a transient and structured synaptic network with interneurons that follows its own rules of connectivity. Fast-spiking interneurons, highly connected to NG2 cells, target proximal subcellular domains containing GABAA receptors with γ2 subunits. Conversely, non-fast-spiking interneurons, poorly connected with these progenitors, target distal sites lacking this subunit. In the network, interneuron-NG2 cell connectivity maps exhibit a local spatial arrangement reflecting innervation only by the nearest interneurons. This microcircuit architecture shows a connectivity peak at PN10, coinciding with a switch to massive oligodendrocyte differentiation. Hence, GABAergic innervation of NG2 cells is temporally and spatially regulated from the subcellular to the network level in coordination with the onset of oligodendrogenesis. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.06953.001 PMID:25902404

  4. Statistical method for revealing form-function relations in biological networks

    PubMed Central

    Mugler, Andrew; Grinshpun, Boris; Franks, Riley

    2011-01-01

    Over the past decade, a number of researchers in systems biology have sought to relate the function of biological systems to their network-level descriptions—lists of the most important players and the pairwise interactions between them. Both for large networks (in which statistical analysis is often framed in terms of the abundance of repeated small subgraphs) and for small networks which can be analyzed in greater detail (or even synthesized in vivo and subjected to experiment), revealing the relationship between the topology of small subgraphs and their biological function has been a central goal. We here seek to pose this revelation as a statistical task, illustrated using a particular setup which has been constructed experimentally and for which parameterized models of transcriptional regulation have been studied extensively. The question “how does function follow form” is here mathematized by identifying which topological attributes correlate with the diverse possible information-processing tasks which a transcriptional regulatory network can realize. The resulting method reveals one form-function relationship which had earlier been predicted based on analytic results, and reveals a second for which we can provide an analytic interpretation. Resulting source code is distributed via http://formfunction.sourceforge.net. PMID:21183719

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

    PubMed

    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.

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

    PubMed Central

    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.

    2016-01-01

    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. PMID:27762277

  7. Dynamics of Membranes Driven by Actin Polymerization

    PubMed Central

    Gov, Nir S.; Gopinathan, Ajay

    2006-01-01

    A motile cell, when stimulated, shows a dramatic increase in the activity of its membrane, manifested by the appearance of dynamic membrane structures such as lamellipodia, filopodia, and membrane ruffles. The external stimulus turns on membrane bound activators, like Cdc42 and PIP2, which cause increased branching and polymerization of the actin cytoskeleton in their vicinity leading to a local protrusive force on the membrane. The emergence of the complex membrane structures is a result of the coupling between the dynamics of the membrane, the activators, and the protrusive forces. We present a simple model that treats the dynamics of a membrane under the action of actin polymerization forces that depend on the local density of freely diffusing activators on the membrane. We show that, depending on the spontaneous membrane curvature associated with the activators, the resulting membrane motion can be wavelike, corresponding to membrane ruffling and actin waves, or unstable, indicating the tendency of filopodia to form. Our model also quantitatively explains a variety of related experimental observations and makes several testable predictions. PMID:16239328

  8. Rho GTPases, phosphoinositides, and actin

    PubMed Central

    Croisé, Pauline; Estay-Ahumada, Catherine; Gasman, Stéphane; Ory, Stéphane

    2014-01-01

    Rho GTPases are well known regulators of the actin cytoskeleton that act by binding and activating actin nucleators. They are therefore involved in many actin-based processes, including cell migration, cell polarity, and membrane trafficking. With the identification of phosphoinositide kinases and phosphatases as potential binding partners or effectors, Rho GTPases also appear to participate in the regulation of phosphoinositide metabolism. Since both actin dynamics and phosphoinositide turnover affect the efficiency and the fidelity of vesicle transport between cell compartments, Rho GTPases have emerged as critical players in membrane trafficking. Rho GTPase activity, actin remodeling, and phosphoinositide metabolism need to be coordinated in both space and time to ensure the progression of vesicles along membrane trafficking pathways. Although most molecular pathways are still unclear, in this review, we will highlight recent advances made in our understanding of how Rho-dependent signaling pathways organize actin dynamics and phosphoinositides and how phosphoinositides potentially provide negative feedback to Rho GTPases during endocytosis, exocytosis and membrane exchange between intracellular compartments. PMID:24914539

  9. Computational Tension Mapping of Adherent Cells Based on Actin Imaging.

    PubMed

    Manifacier, Ian; Milan, Jean-Louis; Jeanneau, Charlotte; Chmilewsky, Fanny; Chabrand, Patrick; About, Imad

    2016-01-01

    Forces transiting through the cytoskeleton are known to play a role in adherent cell activity. Up to now few approaches haves been able to determine theses intracellular forces. We thus developed a computational mechanical model based on a reconstruction of the cytoskeleton of an adherent cell from fluorescence staining of the actin network and focal adhesions (FA). Our custom made algorithm converted the 2D image of an actin network into a map of contractile interactions inside a 2D node grid, each node representing a group of pixels. We assumed that actin filaments observed under fluorescence microscopy, appear brighter when thicker, we thus presumed that nodes corresponding to pixels with higher actin density were linked by stiffer interactions. This enabled us to create a system of heterogeneous interactions which represent the spatial organization of the contractile actin network. The contractility of this interaction system was then adapted to match the level of force the cell truly exerted on focal adhesions; forces on focal adhesions were estimated from their vinculin expressed size. This enabled the model to compute consistent mechanical forces transiting throughout the cell. After computation, we applied a graphical approach on the original actin image, which enabled us to calculate tension forces throughout the cell, or in a particular region or even in single stress fibers. It also enabled us to study different scenarios which may indicate the mechanical role of other cytoskeletal components such as microtubules. For instance, our results stated that the ratio between intra and extra cellular compression is inversely proportional to intracellular tension.

  10. Computational Tension Mapping of Adherent Cells Based on Actin Imaging

    PubMed Central

    Manifacier, Ian; Milan, Jean-Louis; Jeanneau, Charlotte; Chmilewsky, Fanny; Chabrand, Patrick; About, Imad

    2016-01-01

    Forces transiting through the cytoskeleton are known to play a role in adherent cell activity. Up to now few approaches haves been able to determine theses intracellular forces. We thus developed a computational mechanical model based on a reconstruction of the cytoskeleton of an adherent cell from fluorescence staining of the actin network and focal adhesions (FA). Our custom made algorithm converted the 2D image of an actin network into a map of contractile interactions inside a 2D node grid, each node representing a group of pixels. We assumed that actin filaments observed under fluorescence microscopy, appear brighter when thicker, we thus presumed that nodes corresponding to pixels with higher actin density were linked by stiffer interactions. This enabled us to create a system of heterogeneous interactions which represent the spatial organization of the contractile actin network. The contractility of this interaction system was then adapted to match the level of force the cell truly exerted on focal adhesions; forces on focal adhesions were estimated from their vinculin expressed size. This enabled the model to compute consistent mechanical forces transiting throughout the cell. After computation, we applied a graphical approach on the original actin image, which enabled us to calculate tension forces throughout the cell, or in a particular region or even in single stress fibers. It also enabled us to study different scenarios which may indicate the mechanical role of other cytoskeletal components such as microtubules. For instance, our results stated that the ratio between intra and extra cellular compression is inversely proportional to intracellular tension. PMID:26812601

  11. In Vivo Imaging and Characterization of Actin Microridges

    PubMed Central

    Lam, Pui-ying; Mangos, Steve; Green, Julie M.; Reiser, Jochen; Huttenlocher, Anna

    2015-01-01

    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. PMID:25629723

  12. The Role of Actin Cytoskeleton in Memory Formation in Amygdala

    PubMed Central

    Lamprecht, Raphael

    2016-01-01

    The central, lateral and basolateral amygdala (BLA) nuclei are essential for the formation of long-term memories including emotional and drug-related memories. Studying cellular and molecular mechanisms of memory in amygdala may lead to better understanding of how memory is formed and of fear and addiction-related disorders. A challenge is to identify molecules activated by learning that subserve cellular changes needed for memory formation and maintenance in amygdala. Recent studies show that activation of synaptic receptors during fear and drug-related learning leads to alteration in actin cytoskeleton dynamics and structure in amygdala. Such changes in actin cytoskeleton in amygdala are essential for fear and drug-related memories formation. Moreover, the actin cytoskeleton subserves, after learning, changes in neuronal morphogenesis and glutamate receptors trafficking in amygdala. These cellular events are involved in fear and drug-related memories formation. Actin polymerization is also needed for the maintenance of drug-associated memories in amygdala. Thus, the actin cytoskeleton is a key mediator between receptor activation during learning and cellular changes subserving long-term memory (LTM) in amygdala. The actin cytoskeleton may serve as a target for pharmacological treatment of fear memory associated with fear and anxiety disorders and drug addiction to prevent the debilitating consequences of these diseases. PMID:27065800

  13. An Interconnected Network of Core-Forming Melts Produced by Shear Deformation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bruhn, D.; Groebner, N.; Kohlstedt, D. L.

    2000-01-01

    The formation mechanism of terrestrial planetary is still poorly understood, and has been the subject of numerous experimental studies. Several mechanisms have been proposed by which metal-mainly iron with some nickel-could have been extracted from a silicate mantle to form the core. Most recent models involve gravitational sinking of molten metal or metal sulphide through a partially or fully molten mantle that is often referred to as a'magma ocean. Alternative models invoke percolation of molten metal along an interconnected network (that is, porous flow) through a solid silicate matrix. But experimental studies performed at high pressures have shown that, under hydrostatic conditions, these melts do not form an interconnected network, leading to the widespread assumption that formation of metallic cores requires a magma ocean. In contrast, here we present experiments which demonstrate that shear deformation to large strains can interconnect a significant fraction of initially isolated pockets of metal and metal sulphide melts in a solid matrix of polycrystalline olivine. Therefore, in a dynamic (nonhydrostatic) environment, percolation remains a viable mechanism for the segregation and migration of core-forming melts in a solid silicate mantle.

  14. Decavanadate interactions with actin: cysteine oxidation and vanadyl formation.

    PubMed

    Ramos, Susana; Duarte, Rui O; Moura, José J G; Aureliano, Manuel

    2009-10-14

    Incubation of actin with decavanadate induces cysteine oxidation and oxidovanadium(IV) formation. The studies were performed combining kinetic with spectroscopic (NMR and EPR) methodologies. Although decavanadate is converted to labile oxovanadates, the rate of deoligomerization can be very slow (half-life time of 5.4 h, at 25 degrees C, with a first order kinetics), which effectively allows decavanadate to exist for some time under experimental conditions. It was observed that decavanadate inhibits F-actin-stimulated myosin ATPase activity with an IC(50) of 0.8 microM V(10) species, whereas 50 microM of vanadate or oxidovanadium(IV) only inhibits enzyme activity up to 25%. Moreover, from these three vanadium forms, only decavanadate induces the oxidation of the so called "fast" cysteines (or exposed cysteine, Cys-374) when the enzyme is in the polymerized and active form, F-actin, with an IC(50) of 1 microM V(10) species. Decavanadate exposition to F- and G-actin (monomeric form) promotes vanadate reduction since a typical EPR oxidovanadium(IV) spectrum was observed. Upon observation that V(10) reduces to oxidovanadium(IV), it is proposed that this cation interacts with G-actin (K(d) of 7.48 +/- 1.11 microM), and with F-actin (K(d) = 43.05 +/- 5.34 microM) with 1:1 and 4:1 stoichiometries, respectively, as observed by EPR upon protein titration with oxidovanadium(IV). The interaction of oxidovanadium(IV) with the protein may occur close to the ATP binding site of actin, eventually with lysine-336 and 3 water molecules.

  15. The polymerization of actin. A study of the nucleation reaction.

    PubMed Central

    Grazi, E; Ferri, A; Cino, S

    1983-01-01

    We compared the properties of the nuclei that accumulate in 7.5 mM-KCl in ATP-G-actin solutions and of the oligomers that are formed by sonication of either G-actin or F-actin. We found that the ability of the above species to prime the polymerization of actin decays with different rates. The nuclei are stable in 7.5 mM-KCl (they decay with a rate constant of 1.5 X 10(-3) s -1 at pH 7.8 at 22 degrees C in the absence of KCl). The oligomers formed by sonication of either G-actin or F-actin, once the sonication is stopped, revert to simpler structures or evolve into F-actin, depending on the KCl concentration in which they are kept. In 10.5 mM-KCl at pH 7.8 at 22 degrees C their priming ability decays with a rate constant of 6 X 10(-3) s -1. We propose that the nuclei that form spontaneously in 7.5 mM-KCl are not directly susceptible to elongation. They must first be converted into activated nuclei, which exist in very low concentration at the steady state. The activated nuclei are directly susceptible to elongation, they have a short life and they decay rapidly into the ground state unless the elongation reaction occurs. Sonication displaces the steady-state concentration in favour of the activated state. PMID:6615456

  16. X-ray scattering study of actin polymerization nuclei assembled by tandem W domains

    SciTech Connect

    Rebowski, Grzegorz; Boczkowska, Malgorzata; Hayes, David B.; Guo, Liang; Irving, Thomas C.; Dominguez, Roberto

    2008-08-27

    The initiation of actin polymerization in cells requires actin filament nucleators. With the exception of formins, known filament nucleators use the Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein (WASP) homology 2 (WH2 or W) domain for interaction with actin. A common architecture, found in Spire, Cobl, VopL, and VopF, consists of tandem W domains that tie together three to four actin monomers to form a polymerization nucleus. Uncontrollable polymerization has prevented the structural investigation of such nuclei. We have engineered stable nuclei consisting of an actin dimer and a trimer stabilized by tandem W domain hybrid constructs and studied their structures in solution by x-ray scattering. We show that Spire-like tandem W domains stabilize a polymerization nucleus by lining up actin subunits along the long-pitch helix of the actin filament. Intersubunit contacts in the polymerization nucleus, thought to involve the DNase I-binding loop of actin, coexist with the binding of the W domain in the cleft between actin subdomains 1 and 3. The successful stabilization of filament-like multiactin assemblies opens the way to the crystallographic investigation of intersubunit contacts in the actin filament.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  18. Structural transition of actin filament in a cell-sized water droplet with a phospholipid membrane

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hase, M.; Yoshikawa, K.

    2006-03-01

    Actin filament, F-actin, is a semiflexible polymer with a negative charge, and is one of the main constituents of 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 6mM Mg2+, while between 6 and 12mM Mg2+, actin filaments are adsorbed onto the inner membrane surface. With PE, the actin filaments are uniformly adsorbed onto the inner membrane surface between 2 and 12mM Mg2+. With both PS and PE membranes, at Mg2+ concentrations higher than 12mM, thick bundles are formed in the bulk water droplet accompanied by the dissolution of actin filaments from the membrane surface. The attraction between actin filaments and membrane is attributable to an increase in the translational entropy of counterions accompanied by the adsorption of actin filaments onto the membrane surface. These results suggest that a microscopic water droplet coated with phospholipid can serve as an easy-to-handle model of cell membranes.

  19. Ubiquitin ligase TRIM3 controls hippocampal plasticity and learning by regulating synaptic γ-actin levels

    PubMed Central

    Schreiber, Joerg; Végh, Marlene J.; Dawitz, Julia; Kroon, Tim; Loos, Maarten; Labonté, Dorthe; Li, Ka Wan; Van Nierop, Pim; Van Diepen, Michiel T.; De Zeeuw, Chris I.; Kneussel, Matthias; Meredith, Rhiannon M.; Smit, August B.

    2015-01-01

    Synaptic plasticity requires remodeling of the actin cytoskeleton. Although two actin isoforms, β- and γ-actin, are expressed in dendritic spines, the specific contribution of γ-actin in the expression of synaptic plasticity is unknown. We show that synaptic γ-actin levels are regulated by the E3 ubiquitin ligase TRIM3. TRIM3 protein and Actg1 transcript are colocalized in messenger ribonucleoprotein granules responsible for the dendritic targeting of messenger RNAs. TRIM3 polyubiquitylates γ-actin, most likely cotranslationally at synaptic sites. Trim3−/− mice consequently have increased levels of γ-actin at hippocampal synapses, resulting in higher spine densities, increased long-term potentiation, and enhanced short-term contextual fear memory consolidation. Interestingly, hippocampal deletion of Actg1 caused an increase in long-term fear memory. Collectively, our findings suggest that temporal control of γ-actin levels by TRIM3 is required to regulate the timing of hippocampal plasticity. We propose a model in which TRIM3 regulates synaptic γ-actin turnover and actin filament stability and thus forms a transient inhibitory constraint on the expression of hippocampal synaptic plasticity. PMID:26527743

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

    PubMed

    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.

  1. Self-assembly of Artificial Actin Filaments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  2. Network analysis reveals that bacteria and fungi form modules that correlate independently with soil parameters.

    PubMed

    de Menezes, Alexandre B; Prendergast-Miller, Miranda T; Richardson, Alan E; Toscas, Peter; Farrell, Mark; Macdonald, Lynne M; Baker, Geoff; Wark, Tim; Thrall, Peter H

    2015-08-01

    Network and multivariate statistical analyses were performed to determine interactions between bacterial and fungal community terminal restriction length polymorphisms as well as soil properties in paired woodland and pasture sites. Canonical correspondence analysis (CCA) revealed that shifts in woodland community composition correlated with soil dissolved organic carbon, while changes in pasture community composition correlated with moisture, nitrogen and phosphorus. Weighted correlation network analysis detected two distinct microbial modules per land use. Bacterial and fungal ribotypes did not group separately, rather all modules comprised of both bacterial and fungal ribotypes. Woodland modules had a similar fungal : bacterial ribotype ratio, while in the pasture, one module was fungal dominated. There was no correspondence between pasture and woodland modules in their ribotype composition. The modules had different relationships to soil variables, and these contrasts were not detected without the use of network analysis. This study demonstrated that fungi and bacteria, components of the soil microbial communities usually treated as separate functional groups as in a CCA approach, were co-correlated and formed distinct associations in these adjacent habitats. Understanding these distinct modular associations may shed more light on their niche space in the soil environment, and allow a more realistic description of soil microbial ecology and function.

  3. Coalitional Games in Partition Form for Joint Spectrum Sensing and Access in Cognitive Radio Networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saad, Walid; Han, Zhu; Zheng, Rong; Hjorungnes, Are; Basar, Tamer; Poor, H. Vincent

    2012-04-01

    Unlicensed secondary users (SUs) in cognitive radio networks are subject to an inherent tradeoff between spectrum sensing and spectrum access. Although each SU has an incentive to sense the primary user (PU) channels for locating spectrum holes, this exploration of the spectrum can come at the expense of a shorter transmission time, and, hence, a possibly smaller capacity for data transmission. This paper investigates the impact of this tradeoff on the cooperative strategies of a network of SUs that seek to cooperate in order to improve their view of the spectrum (sensing), reduce the possibility of interference among each other, and improve their transmission capacity (access). The problem is modeled as a coalitional game in partition form and an algorithm for coalition formation is proposed. Using the proposed algorithm, the SUs can make individual distributed decisions to join or leave a coalition while maximizing their utilities which capture the average time spent for sensing as well as the capacity achieved while accessing the spectrum. It is shown that, by using the proposed algorithm, the SUs can self-organize into a network partition composed of disjoint coalitions, with the members of each coalition cooperating to jointly optimize their sensing and access performance. Simulation results show the performance improvement that the proposed algorithm yields with respect to the non-cooperative case. The results also show how the algorithm allows the SUs to self-adapt to changes in the environment such as the change in the traffic of the PUs, or slow mobility.

  4. Tracer diffusion through F-actin: effect of filament length and cross-linking.

    PubMed Central

    Jones, J D; Luby-Phelps, K

    1996-01-01

    We have determined diffusion coefficients for small (50- to 70-nm diameter) fluorescein-thiocarbamoyl-labeled Ficoll tracers through F-actin as a function of filament length and cross-linking. fx45 was used to regulate filament length and avidin/biotinylated actin or ABP-280 was used to prepare cross-linked actin gels. We found that tracer diffusion was generally independent of filament length in agreement with theoretical predictions for diffusion through solutions of rods. However, in some experiments diffusion was slower through short (< or = 1.0 micron) filaments, although this result was not consistently reproducible. Measured diffusion coefficients through unregulated F-actin and filaments of lengths > 1.0 micron were more rapid than predicted by theory for tracer diffusion through rigid, random networks, which was consistent with some degree of actin bundling. Avidin-induced cross-linking of biotinylated F-actin did not affect diffusion through unregulated F-actin, but in cases where diffusion was slower through short filaments this cross-linking method resulted in enhanced tracer diffusion rates indistinguishable from unregulated F-actin. This finding, in conjunction with increased turbidity of 1.0-micron filaments upon avidin cross-linking, indicated that this cross-linking method induces F-actin bundling. By contrast, ABP-280 cross-linking retarded diffusion through unregulated F-actin and decreased turbidity. Tracer diffusion under these conditions was well approximated by the diffusion theory. Both cross-linking procedures resulted in gel formation as determined by falling ball viscometry. These results demonstrate that network microscopic geometry is dependent on the cross-linking method, although both methods markedly increase F-actin macroscopic viscosity. PMID:8913611

  5. The Differential Formation of the LINC-Mediated Perinuclear Actin Cap in Pluripotent and Somatic Cells

    PubMed Central

    Khatau, Shyam B.; Kusuma, Sravanti; Hanjaya-Putra, Donny; Mali, Prashant; Cheng, Linzhao; Lee, Jerry S. H.; Gerecht, Sharon; Wirtz, Denis

    2012-01-01

    The actin filament cytoskeleton mediates cell motility and adhesion in somatic cells. However, whether the function and organization of the actin network are fundamentally different in pluripotent stem cells is unknown. Here we show that while conventional actin stress fibers at the basal surface of cells are present before and after onset of differentiation of mouse (mESCs) and human embryonic stem cells (hESCs), actin stress fibers of the actin cap, which wrap around the nucleus, are completely absent from undifferentiated mESCs and hESCs and their formation strongly correlates with differentiation. Similarly, the perinuclear actin cap is absent from human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs), while it is organized in the parental lung fibroblasts from which these hiPSCs are derived and in a wide range of human somatic cells, including lung, embryonic, and foreskin fibroblasts and endothelial cells. During differentiation, the formation of the actin cap follows the expression and proper localization of nuclear lamin A/C and associated linkers of nucleus and cytoskeleton (LINC) complexes at the nuclear envelope, which physically couple the actin cap to the apical surface of the nucleus. The differentiation of hESCs is accompanied by the progressive formation of a perinuclear actin cap while induced pluripotency is accompanied by the specific elimination of the actin cap, and that, through lamin A/C and LINC complexes, this actin cap is involved in progressively shaping the nucleus of hESCs undergoing differentiation. While, the localization of lamin A/C at the nuclear envelope is required for perinuclear actin cap formation, it is not sufficient to control nuclear shape. PMID:22574215

  6. Unconventional myosin traffic in cells reveals a selective actin cytoskeleton

    PubMed Central

    Brawley, Crista M.; Rock, Ronald S.

    2009-01-01

    Eukaryotic cells have a self-organizing cytoskeleton where motors transport cargoes along cytoskeletal tracks. To understand the sorting process, we developed a system to observe single-molecule motility in a cellular context. We followed myosin classes V, VI, and X on triton-extracted actin cytoskeletons from Drosophila S2, mammalian COS-7, and mammalian U2OS cells. We find that these cells vary considerably in their global traffic patterns. The S2 and U2OS cells have regions of actin that either enhance or inhibit specific myosin classes. U2OS cells allow for 1 motor class, myosin VI, to move along stress fiber bundles, while motility of myosin V and X are suppressed. Myosin X motors are recruited to filopodia and the lamellar edge in S2 cells, whereas myosin VI motility is excluded from the same regions. Furthermore, we also see different velocities of myosin V motors in central regions of S2 cells, suggesting regional control of motor motility by the actin cytoskeleton. We also find unexpected features of the actin cytoskeletal network, including a population of reversed filaments with the barbed-end toward the cell center. This myosin motor regulation demonstrates that native actin cytoskeletons are more than just a collection of filaments. PMID:19478066

  7. Slow down of actin depolymerization by cross-linking molecules.

    PubMed

    Schmoller, Kurt M; Semmrich, Christine; Bausch, Andreas R

    2011-02-01

    The ability to control the assembly and disassembly dynamics of actin filaments is an essential property of the cellular cytoskeleton. While many different proteins are known which accelerate the polymerization of monomers into filaments or promote their disintegration, much less is known on mechanisms which guarantee the kinetic stability of the cytoskeletal filaments. Previous studies indicate that cross-linking molecules might fulfill these stabilizing tasks, which in addition facilitates their ability to regulate the organization of cytoskeletal structures in vivo. The effect of depolymerization factors on such structures or the mechanism which leads finally to their disintegration remain unknown. Here, we use multiple depolymerization methods in order to directly demonstrate that cross-linking and bundling proteins effectively suppress the actin depolymerization in a concentration dependent manner. Even the actin depolymerizing factor cofilin is not sufficient to facilitate a fast disintegration of highly cross-linked actin networks unless molecular motors are used simultaneously. The drastic modification of actin kinetics by cross-linking molecules can be expected to have wide-ranging implications for our understanding of the cytoskeleton, where cross-linking molecules are omnipresent and essential.

  8. Linear viscoelastic properties of transient networks formed by associating polymers with multiple stickers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Indei, Tsutomu; Takimoto, Jun-ichi

    2010-11-01

    We have developed a single-chain theory that describes dynamics of associating polymer chains carrying multiple associative groups (or stickers) in the transient network formed by themselves and studied linear viscoelastic properties of this network. It is shown that if the average number N¯ of stickers associated with the network junction per chain is large, the terminal relaxation time τA that is proportional to τXN¯2 appears. The time τX is the interval during which an associated sticker goes back to its equilibrium position by one or more dissociation steps. In this lower frequency regime ω <1/τX, the moduli are well described in terms of the Rouse model with the longest relaxation time τA. The large value of N¯ is realized for chains carrying many stickers whose rate of association with the network junction is much larger than the dissociation rate. This associative Rouse behavior stems from the association/dissociation processes of stickers and is different from the ordinary Rouse behavior in the higher frequency regime, which is originated from the thermal segmental motion between stickers. If N¯ is not large, the dynamic shear moduli are well described in terms of the Maxwell model characterized by a single relaxation time τX in the moderate and lower frequency regimes. Thus, the transition occurs in the viscoelastic relaxation behavior from the Maxwell-type to the Rouse-type in ω <1/τX as N¯ increases. All these results are obtained under the affine deformation assumption for junction points. We also studied the effect of the junction fluctuations from the affine motion on the plateau modulus by introducing the virtual spring for bound stickers. It is shown that the plateau modulus is not affected by the junction fluctuations.

  9. Mechanism of Deep-Sea Fish α-Actin Pressure Tolerance Investigated by Molecular Dynamics Simulations

    PubMed Central

    Wakai, Nobuhiko; Takemura, Kazuhiro; Morita, Takami; Kitao, Akio

    2014-01-01

    The pressure tolerance of monomeric α-actin proteins from the deep-sea fish Coryphaenoides armatus and C. yaquinae was compared to that of non-deep-sea fish C. acrolepis, carp, and rabbit/human/chicken actins using molecular dynamics simulations at 0.1 and 60 MPa. The amino acid sequences of actins are highly conserved across a variety of species. The actins from C. armatus and C. yaquinae have the specific substitutions Q137K/V54A and Q137K/L67P, respectively, relative to C. acrolepis, and are pressure tolerant to depths of at least 6000 m. At high pressure, we observed significant changes in the salt bridge patterns in deep-sea fish actins, and these changes are expected to stabilize ATP binding and subdomain arrangement. Salt bridges between ATP and K137, formed in deep-sea fish actins, are expected to stabilize ATP binding even at high pressure. At high pressure, deep-sea fish actins also formed a greater total number of salt bridges than non-deep-sea fish actins owing to the formation of inter-helix/strand and inter-subdomain salt bridges. Free energy analysis suggests that deep-sea fish actins are stabilized to a greater degree by the conformational energy decrease associated with pressure effect. PMID:24465747

  10. Mechanism of deep-sea fish α-actin pressure tolerance investigated by molecular dynamics simulations.

    PubMed

    Wakai, Nobuhiko; Takemura, Kazuhiro; Morita, Takami; Kitao, Akio

    2014-01-01

    The pressure tolerance of monomeric α-actin proteins from the deep-sea fish Coryphaenoides armatus and C. yaquinae was compared to that of non-deep-sea fish C. acrolepis, carp, and rabbit/human/chicken actins using molecular dynamics simulations at 0.1 and 60 MPa. The amino acid sequences of actins are highly conserved across a variety of species. The actins from C. armatus and C. yaquinae have the specific substitutions Q137K/V54A and Q137K/L67P, respectively, relative to C. acrolepis, and are pressure tolerant to depths of at least 6000 m. At high pressure, we observed significant changes in the salt bridge patterns in deep-sea fish actins, and these changes are expected to stabilize ATP binding and subdomain arrangement. Salt bridges between ATP and K137, formed in deep-sea fish actins, are expected to stabilize ATP binding even at high pressure. At high pressure, deep-sea fish actins also formed a greater total number of salt bridges than non-deep-sea fish actins owing to the formation of inter-helix/strand and inter-subdomain salt bridges. Free energy analysis suggests that deep-sea fish actins are stabilized to a greater degree by the conformational energy decrease associated with pressure effect.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  12. A Robust Actin Filaments Image Analysis Framework

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  13. Nuclear migration during karyogamy in rice zygotes is mediated by continuous convergence of actin meshwork toward the egg nucleus.

    PubMed

    Ohnishi, Yukinosuke; Okamoto, Takashi

    2017-03-01

    Fertilization is comprised of two sequential fusion processes; plasmogamy and karyogamy. Karyogamy completes with migration and fusion of the male and female nuclei in the fused cell. In animals, microtubules organized by the centrosome control female/male pronuclei migration. In contrast, the nuclear migration in fused gametes of angiosperms is controlled by actin filaments, but the mechanism that regulates actin filament-dependent nuclear migration is not clear. In this study, we prepared fused rice (Oryza sativa L.) gametes/zygotes using in vitro fertilization and observed the spatial and temporal movements of actin filaments and sperm nuclei. Our results show that actin filaments in egg cells form a meshwork structure surrounding the nuclei. Quantitative analysis of the actin meshwork dynamics suggests that actin meshwork converges toward the egg nucleus. In egg cells fused with sperm cells, actin filaments appeared to interact with a portion of the sperm nuclear membrane. The velocity of the actin filaments was positively correlated with the velocity of the sperm nucleus during karyogamy. These results suggest that sperm nuclear membrane and actin filaments physically interact with each other during karyogamy, and that the sperm nucleus migrates toward the egg nucleus through the convergence of the actin meshwork. Interestingly, actin filament velocity increased promptly after gamete fusion and was further elevated during nuclear fusion. In addition to the migration of gamete nuclei, convergence of actin meshwork may also be critical during early zygotic developments.

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

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    2000-01-01

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

  15. Addition of electrophilic lipids to actin alters filament structure

    SciTech Connect

    Gayarre, Javier; Sanchez, David; Sanchez-Gomez, Francisco J.; Terron, Maria C.; Llorca, Oscar; Perez-Sala, Dolores . E-mail: dperezsala@cib.csic.es

    2006-11-03

    Pathophysiological processes associated with oxidative stress lead to the generation of reactive lipid species. Among them, lipids bearing unsaturated aldehyde or ketone moieties can form covalent adducts with cysteine residues and modulate protein function. Through proteomic techniques we have identified actin as a target for the addition of biotinylated analogs of the cyclopentenone prostaglandins 15-deoxy-{delta}{sup 12,14}-PGJ{sub 2} (15d-PGJ{sub 2}) and PGA{sub 1} in NIH-3T3 fibroblasts. This modification could take place in vitro and mapped to the protein C-terminal end. Other electrophilic lipids, like the isoprostane 8-iso-PGA{sub 1} and 4-hydroxy-2-nonenal, also bound to actin. The C-terminal region of actin is important for monomer-monomer interactions and polymerization. Electron microscopy showed that actin treated with 15d-PGJ{sub 2} or 4-hydroxy-2-nonenal formed filaments which were less abundant and displayed shorter length and altered structure. Streptavidin-gold staining allowed mapping of biotinylated 15d-PGJ{sub 2} at sites of filament disruption. These results shed light on the structural implications of actin modification by lipid electrophiles.

  16. Addition of electrophilic lipids to actin alters filament structure.

    PubMed

    Gayarre, Javier; Sánchez, David; Sánchez-Gómez, Francisco J; Terrón, María C; Llorca, Oscar; Pérez-Sala, Dolores

    2006-11-03

    Pathophysiological processes associated with oxidative stress lead to the generation of reactive lipid species. Among them, lipids bearing unsaturated aldehyde or ketone moieties can form covalent adducts with cysteine residues and modulate protein function. Through proteomic techniques we have identified actin as a target for the addition of biotinylated analogs of the cyclopentenone prostaglandins 15-deoxy-Delta(12,14)-PGJ(2) (15d-PGJ(2)) and PGA(1) in NIH-3T3 fibroblasts. This modification could take place in vitro and mapped to the protein C-terminal end. Other electrophilic lipids, like the isoprostane 8-iso-PGA(1) and 4-hydroxy-2-nonenal, also bound to actin. The C-terminal region of actin is important for monomer-monomer interactions and polymerization. Electron microscopy showed that actin treated with 15d-PGJ(2) or 4-hydroxy-2-nonenal formed filaments which were less abundant and displayed shorter length and altered structure. Streptavidin-gold staining allowed mapping of biotinylated 15d-PGJ(2) at sites of filament disruption. These results shed light on the structural implications of actin modification by lipid electrophiles.

  17. Formation of long and winding nuclear F-actin bundles by nuclear c-Abl tyrosine kinase

    SciTech Connect

    Aoyama, Kazumasa; Yuki, Ryuzaburo; Horiike, Yasuyoshi; Kubota, Sho; Yamaguchi, Noritaka; Morii, Mariko; Ishibashi, Kenichi; Nakayama, Yuji; Kuga, Takahisa; Hashimoto, Yuuki; Tomonaga, Takeshi; Yamaguchi, Naoto

    2013-12-10

    The non-receptor-type tyrosine kinase c-Abl is involved in actin dynamics in the cytoplasm. Having three nuclear localization signals (NLSs) and one nuclear export signal, c-Abl shuttles between the nucleus and the cytoplasm. Although monomeric actin and filamentous actin (F-actin) are present in the nucleus, little is known about the relationship between c-Abl and nuclear actin dynamics. Here, we show that nuclear-localized c-Abl induces nuclear F-actin formation. Adriamycin-induced DNA damage together with leptomycin B treatment accumulates c-Abl into the nucleus and increases the levels of nuclear F-actin. Treatment of c-Abl-knockdown cells with Adriamycin and leptomycin B barely increases the nuclear F-actin levels. Expression of nuclear-targeted c-Abl (NLS-c-Abl) increases the levels of nuclear F-actin even without Adriamycin, and the increased levels of nuclear F-actin are not inhibited by inactivation of Abl kinase activity. Intriguingly, expression of NLS-c-Abl induces the formation of long and winding bundles of F-actin within the nucleus in a c-Abl kinase activity-dependent manner. Furthermore, NLS-c-AblΔC, which lacks the actin-binding domain but has the full tyrosine kinase activity, is incapable of forming nuclear F-actin and in particular long and winding nuclear F-actin bundles. These results suggest that nuclear c-Abl plays critical roles in actin dynamics within the nucleus. - Highlights: • We show the involvement of c-Abl tyrosine kinase in nuclear actin dynamics. • Nuclear F-actin is formed by nuclear-localized c-Abl and its kinase-dead version. • The c-Abl actin-binding domain is prerequisite for nuclear F-actin formation. • Formation of long nuclear F-actin bundles requires nuclear c-Abl kinase activity. • We discuss a role for nuclear F-actin bundle formation in chromatin regulation.

  18. Arg/Abl2 modulates the affinity and stoichiometry of binding of cortactin to F-actin.

    PubMed

    MacGrath, Stacey M; Koleske, Anthony J

    2012-08-21

    The Abl family nonreceptor tyrosine kinase Arg/Abl2 interacts with cortactin, an Arp2/3 complex activator, to promote actin-driven cell edge protrusion. Both Arg and cortactin bind directly to filamentous actin (F-actin). While protein-protein interactions between Arg and cortactin have well-characterized downstream effects on the actin cytoskeleton, it is unclear whether and how Arg and cortactin affect each other's actin binding properties. We employ actin cosedimentation assays to show that Arg increases the stoichiometry of binding of cortactin to F-actin at saturation. Using a series of Arg deletion mutants and fragments, we demonstrate that the Arg C-terminal calponin homology domain is necessary and sufficient to increase the stoichiometry of binding of cortactin to F-actin. We also show that interactions between Arg and cortactin are required for optimal affinity between cortactin and the actin filament. Our data suggest a mechanism for Arg-dependent stimulation of binding of cortactin to F-actin, which may facilitate the recruitment of cortactin to sites of local actin network assembly.

  19. Bacterial Actins? An Evolutionary Perspective

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Doolittle, Russell F.; York, Amanda L.

    2003-01-01

    According to the conventional wisdom, the existence of a cytoskeleton in eukaryotes and its absence in prokaryotes constitute a fundamental divide between the two domains of life. An integral part of the dogma is that a cytoskeleton enabled an early eukaryote to feed upon prokaryotes, a consequence of which was the occasional endosymbiosis and the eventual evolution of organelles. Two recent papers present compelling evidence that actin, one of the principal components of a cytoskeleton, has a homolog in Bacteria that behaves in many ways like eukaryotic actin. Sequence comparisons reveml that eukaryotic actin and the bacterial homolog (mreB protein), unlike many other proteins common to eukaryotes and Bacteria, have very different and more highly extended evolutionary histories.

  20. Formation and Destabilization of Actin Filaments with Tetramethylrhodamine-Modified Actin

    PubMed Central

    Kudryashov, Dmitry S.; Phillips, Martin; Reisler, Emil

    2004-01-01

    Actin labeling at Cys374 with tethramethylrhodamine derivatives (TMR-actin) has been widely used for direct observation of the in vitro filaments growth, branching, and treadmilling, as well as for the in vivo visualization of actin cytoskeleton. The advantage of TMR-actin is that it does not lock actin in filaments (as rhodamine-phalloidin does), possibly allowing for its use in investigating the dynamic assembly behavior of actin polymers. Although it is established that TMR-actin alone is polymerization incompetent, the impact of its copolymerization with unlabeled actin on filament structure and dynamics has not been tested yet. In this study, we show that TMR-actin perturbs the filaments structure when copolymerized with unlabeled actin; the resulting filaments are more fragile and shorter than the control filaments. Due to the increased severing of copolymer filaments, TMR-actin accelerates the polymerization of unlabeled actin in solution also at mole ratios lower than those used in most fluorescence microscopy experiments. The destabilizing and severing effect of TMR-actin is countered by filament stabilizing factors, phalloidin, S1, and tropomyosin. These results point to an analogy between the effects of TMR-actin and severing proteins on F-actin, and imply that TMR-actin may be inappropriate for investigations of actin filaments dynamics. PMID:15298916

  1. Optimal treatment of actinic keratoses

    PubMed Central

    Uhlenhake, Elizabeth E

    2013-01-01

    The most compelling reason and primary goal of treating actinic keratoses is to prevent malignant transformation into invasive squamous cell carcinoma, and although there are well established guidelines outlining treatment modalities and regimens for squamous cell carcinoma, the more commonly encountered precancerous actinic lesions have no such standard. Many options are available with variable success and patient compliance rates. Prevention of these lesions is key, with sun protection being a must in treating aging patients with sun damage as it is never too late to begin protecting the skin. PMID:23345970

  2. Fascin regulates nuclear actin during Drosophila oogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Kelpsch, Daniel J.; Groen, Christopher M.; Fagan, Tiffany N.; Sudhir, Sweta; Tootle, Tina L.

    2016-01-01

    Drosophila oogenesis provides a developmental system with which to study nuclear actin. During Stages 5–9, nuclear actin levels are high in the oocyte and exhibit variation within the nurse cells. Cofilin and Profilin, which regulate the nuclear import and export of actin, also localize to the nuclei. Expression of GFP-tagged Actin results in nuclear actin rod formation. These findings indicate that nuclear actin must be tightly regulated during oogenesis. One factor mediating this regulation is Fascin. Overexpression of Fascin enhances nuclear GFP-Actin rod formation, and Fascin colocalizes with the rods. Loss of Fascin reduces, whereas overexpression of Fascin increases, the frequency of nurse cells with high levels of nuclear actin, but neither alters the overall nuclear level of actin within the ovary. These data suggest that Fascin regulates the ability of specific cells to accumulate nuclear actin. Evidence indicates that Fascin positively regulates nuclear actin through Cofilin. Loss of Fascin results in decreased nuclear Cofilin. In addition, Fascin and Cofilin genetically interact, as double heterozygotes exhibit a reduction in the number of nurse cells with high nuclear actin levels. These findings are likely applicable beyond Drosophila follicle development, as the localization and functions of Fascin and the mechanisms regulating nuclear actin are widely conserved. PMID:27535426

  3. Hierarchical self-assembly of a striped gyroid formed by threaded chiral mesoscale networks

    PubMed Central

    Kirkensgaard, Jacob J. K.; Evans, Myfanwy E.; de Campo, Liliana; Hyde, Stephen T.

    2014-01-01

    Numerical simulations reveal a family of hierarchical and chiral multicontinuous network structures self-assembled from a melt blend of Y-shaped ABC and ABD three-miktoarm star terpolymers, constrained to have equal-sized A/B and C/D chains, respectively. The C and D majority domains within these patterns form a pair of chiral enantiomeric gyroid labyrinths (srs nets) over a broad range of compositions. The minority A and B components together define a hyperbolic film whose midsurface follows the gyroid minimal surface. A second level of assembly is found within the film, with the minority components also forming labyrinthine domains whose geometry and topology changes systematically as a function of composition. These smaller labyrinths are well described by a family of patterns that tile the hyperbolic plane by regular degree-three trees mapped onto the gyroid. The labyrinths within the gyroid film are densely packed and contain either graphitic hcb nets (chicken wire) or srs nets, forming convoluted intergrowths of multiple nets. Furthermore, each net is ideally a single chiral enantiomer, induced by the gyroid architecture. However, the numerical simulations result in defect-ridden achiral patterns, containing domains of either hand, due to the achiral terpolymeric starting molecules. These mesostructures are among the most topologically complex morphologies identified to date and represent an example of hierarchical ordering within a hyperbolic pattern, a unique mode of soft-matter self-assembly. PMID:24474747

  4. Quantifying a pathway: kinetic analysis of actin dendritic nucleation.

    PubMed

    Kraikivski, Pavel; Slepchenko, Boris M

    2010-08-04

    Progress in uncovering the reaction networks that underlie important cell functions is laying the groundwork for quantitative identification of protein-interaction pathways. Since direct measurement of rate constants is not always feasible, the parameters are often inferred from multiple pieces of data using kinetic analyses based on appropriate mathematical models. The success of this approach relies on the sufficiency of available experimental data for a unique parameterization of the network. The concept of a rate-limiting step is applied to the analysis of experimental data that are usually used to quantify a pathway of actin dendritic nucleation, the Arp2/3-mediated mechanism that enables rapid changes of cell shape in response to external cues. The method yields analytical descriptions of the dynamics of polymerized actin and provides insights into how the experimental curves should be analyzed. It is shown that dynamics measured by pyrene-labeled actin assays with varying Arp2/3 concentrations are equally well described by two different rate-limiting steps: 1), binding of a nucleating complex to the side of a preexisting filament; or 2), its subsequent activation. To distinguish between the alternatives, we propose experiments with varying concentrations of actin monomers, taking advantage of the fact that the number of branches in the two cases depends differently on the initial monomer concentration. The idea is tested by simulating the proposed experiments with the use of spatial stochastic modeling.

  5. Optogenetics to target actin-mediated synaptic loss in Alzheimer's

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zahedi, Atena; DeFea, Kathryn; Ethell, Iryna

    2013-03-01

    Numerous studies in Alzheimer's Disease (AD) animal models show that overproduction of Aβ peptides and their oligomerization can distort dendrites, damage synapses, and decrease the number of dendritic spines and synapses. Aβ may trigger synapse loss by modulating activity of actin-regulating proteins, such as Rac1 and cofilin. Indeed, Aβ1-42 oligomers can activate actin severing protein cofilin through calcineurin-mediated activation of phosphatase slingshot and inhibit an opposing pathway that suppresses cofilin phosphorylation through Rac-mediated activation of LIMK1. Excessive activation of actin-severing protein cofilin triggers the formation of a non-dynamic actin bundles, called rods that are found in AD brains and cause loss of synapses. Hence, regulation of these actin-regulating proteins in dendritic spines could potentially provide useful tools for preventing the synapse/spine loss associated with earlier stages of AD neuropathology. However, lack of spatiotemporal control over their activity is a key limitation. Recently, optogenetic advancements have provided researchers with convenient light-activating proteins such as photoactivatable Rac (PARac). Here, we transfected cultured primary hippocampal neurons and human embryonic kidney (HEK) cells with a PARac/ mCherry-containing plasmid and the mCherry-positive cells were identified and imaged using an inverted fluorescence microscope. Rac1 activation was achieved by irradiation with blue light (480nm) and live changes in dendritic spine morphology were observed using mCherry (587nm). Rac activation was confirmed by immunostaining for phosphorylated form of effector proteinP21 protein-activated kinase 1 (PAK1) and reorganization of actin. Thus, our studies confirm the feasibility of using the PA-Rac construct to trigger actin re-organization in the dendritic spines.

  6. Self-organized Gels in DNA/F-Actin mixtures without Crosslinkers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Butler, John; Hwee Lai, Ghee; Zribi, Olena; Smalyukh, Ivan; Angelini, Thomas; Purdy, Kirstin; Golestanian, Ramin; Wong, Gerard C. L.

    2009-03-01

    Interactions between flexible chains and rigid rods govern a broad range of soft matter systems. As a model system of like-charged rigid rods and flexible chains, we examine mixtures of DNA and filamentous actin (F-actin). Confocal microscopy reveals the formation of elongated nematic F-actin domains reticulated via defect-free vertices into a network embedded in a mesh of random DNA. Synchrotron small-angle x-ray scattering (SAXS) indicates that the DNA mesh squeezes the F-actin domains into a nematic state with an inter-actin spacing that decreases with increasing DNA concentration. Salt strongly influences the domain sizes and transitions the system from a counterion-controlled regime to a depletion-controlled regime, both mechanisms of which are entropic in origin.

  7. Fluvial Channel Networks as Analogs for the Ridge-Forming Unit, Sinus Meridiani, Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilkinson, M. J.; du Bois, J. B.

    2010-01-01

    Fluvial models have been generally discounted as analogs for the younger layered rock units of Sinus Meridiani. A fluvial model based on the large fluvial fan provides a possibly close analog for various features of the sinuous ridges of the etched, ridge-forming unit (RFU) in particular. The close spacing of the RFU ridges, their apparently chaotic orientations, and their organization in dense networks all appear unlike classical stream channel patterns. However, drainage patterns on large fluvial fans low-angle, fluvial aggradational features, 100s of km long, documented worldwide by us provide parallels. Some large fan characteristics resemble those of classical floodplains, but many differences have been demonstrated. One major distinction relevant to the RFU is that channel landscapes of large fans can dominate large areas (1.2 million km2 in one S. American study area). We compare channel morphologies on large fans in the southern Sahara Desert with ridge patterns in Sinus Meridiani (fig 1). Stream channels are the dominant landform on large terrestrial fans: they may equate to the ubiquitous, sinuous, elongated ridges of the RFU that cover areas region wide. Networks of convergent/divergent and crossing channels may equate to similar features in the ridge networks. Downslope divergence is absent in channels of terrestrial upland erosional landscapes (fig. 1, left), whereas it is common to both large fans (fig. 1, center) and RFU ridge patterns (fig 1, right downslope defined as the regional NW slope of Sinus Meridiani). RFU ridge orientation, judged from those areas apparently devoid of impact crater control, is broadly parallel with the regional slope (arrow, fig. 1, right), as is mean orientation of major channels on large fans (arrow, fig. 1, center). High densities per unit area characterize fan channels and martian ridges reaching an order of magnitude higher than those in uplands just upstream of the terrestrial study areas fig. 1. In concert with

  8. Coupling social attention to the self forms a network for personal significance

    PubMed Central

    Sui, Jie; Rotshtein, Pia; Humphreys, Glyn W.

    2013-01-01

    Prior social psychological studies show that newly assigned personal significance can modulate high-level cognitive processes, e.g., memory and social evaluation, with self- and other-related information processed in dissociated prefrontal structure: ventral vs. dorsal, respectively. Here, we demonstrate the impact of personal significance on perception and show the neural network that supports this effect. We used an associative learning procedure in which we “tag” a neutral shape with a self-relevant label. Participants were instructed to associate three neutral shapes with labels for themselves, their best friend, or an unfamiliar other. Functional magnetic resonance imaging data were acquired while participants judged whether the shape-label pairs were maintained or swapped. Behaviorally, participants rapidly tagged a neutral stimulus with self-relevance, showing a robust advantage for self-tagged stimuli. Self-tagging responses were associated with enhanced activity in brain regions linked to self-representation [the ventral medial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC)] and to sensory-driven regions associated with social attention [the left posterior superior temporal sulcus (LpSTS)]. In contrast, associations formed with other people recruited a dorsal frontoparietal control network, with the two networks being inversely correlated. Responses in the vmPFC and LpSTS predicted behavioral self-bias effects. Effective connectivity analyses showed that the vmPFC and the LpSTS were functionally coupled, with the strength of coupling associated with behavioral self-biases. The data show that assignment of personal social significance affects perceptual matching by coupling internal self-representations to brain regions modulating attentional responses to external stimuli. PMID:23610386

  9. A mass weighted chemical elastic network model elucidates closed form domain motions in proteins

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Min Hyeok; Seo, Sangjae; Jeong, Jay Il; Kim, Bum Joon; Liu, Wing Kam; Lim, Byeong Soo; Choi, Jae Boong; Kim, Moon Ki

    2013-01-01

    An elastic network model (ENM), usually Cα coarse-grained one, has been widely used to study protein dynamics as an alternative to classical molecular dynamics simulation. This simple approach dramatically saves the computational cost, but sometimes fails to describe a feasible conformational change due to unrealistically excessive spring connections. To overcome this limitation, we propose a mass-weighted chemical elastic network model (MWCENM) in which the total mass of each residue is assumed to be concentrated on the representative alpha carbon atom and various stiffness values are precisely assigned according to the types of chemical interactions. We test MWCENM on several well-known proteins of which both closed and open conformations are available as well as three α-helix rich proteins. Their normal mode analysis reveals that MWCENM not only generates more plausible conformational changes, especially for closed forms of proteins, but also preserves protein secondary structures thus distinguishing MWCENM from traditional ENMs. In addition, MWCENM also reduces computational burden by using a more sparse stiffness matrix. PMID:23456820

  10. A pulse-forming network for particle path visualization. [at Ames Aeromechanics Water Tunnel Facility

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mcalister, K. W.

    1981-01-01

    A procedure is described for visualizing nonsteady fluid flow patterns over a wide velocity range using discrete nonluminous particles. The paramount element responsible for this capability is a pulse-forming network with variable inductance that is used to modulate the discharge of a fixed amount of electrical energy through a xenon flashtube. The selectable duration of the resultant light emission functions as a variable shutter so that particle path images of constant length can be recorded. The particles employed as flow markers are hydrogen bubbles that are generated by electrolysis in a water tunnel. Data are presented which document the characteristics of the electrical circuit and establish the relation of particle velocity to both section inductance and film exposure.

  11. Cortical Hubs Form a Module for Multisensory Integration on Top of the Hierarchy of Cortical Networks

    PubMed Central

    Zamora-López, Gorka; Zhou, Changsong; Kurths, Jürgen

    2009-01-01

    Sensory stimuli entering the nervous system follow particular paths of processing, typically separated (segregated) from the paths of other modal information. However, sensory perception, awareness and cognition emerge from the combination of information (integration). The corticocortical networks of cats and macaque monkeys display three prominent characteristics: (i) modular organisation (facilitating the segregation), (ii) abundant alternative processing paths and (iii) the presence of highly connected hubs. Here, we study in detail the organisation and potential function of the cortical hubs by graph analysis and information theoretical methods. We find that the cortical hubs form a spatially delocalised, but topologically central module with the capacity to integrate multisensory information in a collaborative manner. With this, we resolve the underlying anatomical substrate that supports the simultaneous capacity of the cortex to segregate and to integrate multisensory information. PMID:20428515

  12. Forming an ad-hoc nearby storage, based on IKAROS and social networking services

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Filippidis, Christos; Cotronis, Yiannis; Markou, Christos

    2014-06-01

    We present an ad-hoc "nearby" storage, based on IKAROS and social networking services, such as Facebook. By design, IKAROS is capable to increase or decrease the number of nodes of the I/O system instance on the fly, without bringing everything down or losing data. IKAROS is capable to decide the file partition distribution schema, by taking on account requests from the user or an application, as well as a domain or a Virtual Organization policy. In this way, it is possible to form multiple instances of smaller capacity higher bandwidth storage utilities capable to respond in an ad-hoc manner. This approach, focusing on flexibility, can scale both up and down and so can provide more cost effective infrastructures for both large scale and smaller size systems. A set of experiments is performed comparing IKAROS with PVFS2 by using multiple clients requests under HPC IOR benchmark and MPICH2.

  13. Shock-Induced Ordering in a Nano-segregated Network-Forming Ionic Liquid.

    PubMed

    Yang, Ke; Lee, Jaejun; Sottos, Nancy R; Moore, Jeffrey S

    2015-12-30

    Understanding shockwave-induced physical and chemical changes of impact-absorbing materials is an important step toward the rational design of materials that mitigate the damage. In this work, we report a series of network-forming ionic liquids (NILs) that possess an intriguing shockwave absorption property upon laser-induced shockwave. Microstructure analysis by X-ray scattering suggests nano-segregation of alkyl side chains and charged head groups in NILs. Further post-shock observations indicate changes in the low-Q region, implying that the soft alkyl domain in NILs plays an important role in absorbing shockwaves. Interestingly, we observe a shock-induced ordering in the NIL with the longest (hexyl) side chain, indicating that both nano-segregated structure and shock-induced ordering contribute to NIL's shockwave absorption performance.

  14. Cluster-variation approximation for a network-forming lattice-fluid model.

    PubMed

    Buzano, C; De Stefanis, E; Pretti, M

    2008-07-14

    We consider a three-dimensional lattice model of a network-forming fluid, which has been recently investigated by Girardi et al. by means of Monte Carlo simulations [J. Chem. Phys. 126, 064503 (2007)], with the aim of describing water anomalies. We develop an approximate semianalytical calculation, based on a cluster-variation technique, which turns out to reproduce almost quantitatively different thermodynamic properties and phase transitions determined by the Monte Carlo method. Nevertheless, our calculation points out the existence of two different phases characterized by long-range orientational order, and of critical transitions between them and to a high-temperature orientationally disordered phase. Also, the existence of such critical lines allows us to explain certain "kinks" in the isotherms and isobars determined by the Monte Carlo analysis. The picture of the phase diagram becomes much more complex and richer, though unfortunately less suitable to describe real water.

  15. Cortical hubs form a module for multisensory integration on top of the hierarchy of cortical networks.

    PubMed

    Zamora-López, Gorka; Zhou, Changsong; Kurths, Jürgen

    2010-01-01

    Sensory stimuli entering the nervous system follow particular paths of processing, typically separated (segregated) from the paths of other modal information. However, sensory perception, awareness and cognition emerge from the combination of information (integration). The corticocortical networks of cats and macaque monkeys display three prominent characteristics: (i) modular organisation (facilitating the segregation), (ii) abundant alternative processing paths and (iii) the presence of highly connected hubs. Here, we study in detail the organisation and potential function of the cortical hubs by graph analysis and information theoretical methods. We find that the cortical hubs form a spatially delocalised, but topologically central module with the capacity to integrate multisensory information in a collaborative manner. With this, we resolve the underlying anatomical substrate that supports the simultaneous capacity of the cortex to segregate and to integrate multisensory information.

  16. Role of actin filaments in fusopod formation and osteoclastogenesis.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yongqiang; Brooks, Patricia Joyce; Jang, Janet Jinyoung; Silver, Alexandra Shade; Arora, Pamma D; McCulloch, Christopher A; Glogauer, Michael

    2015-07-01

    Cell fusion process is a critical, rate-limiting step in osteoclastogenesis but the mechanisms that regulate fusopod formation are not defined. We characterized fusopod generation in cultured pre-osteoclasts derived from cells stably transfected with a plasmid that expressed a short, actin filament binding peptide (Lifeact) fused to mEGFP that enables localization of actin filaments in living cells. Fusion was initiated at fusopods, which are cell extensions of width >2 μm and that are immunostained for myosin-X at the extension tips. Fusopods formed at the leading edge of larger migrating cells and from the tail of adjacent smaller cells, both of which migrated in the same direction. Staining for DC-STAMP was circumferential and did not localize to cell-cell fusion sites. Compared with wild-type cells, monocytes null for Rac1 exhibited 6-fold fewer fusopods and formed 4-fold fewer multinucleated osteoclasts. From time-lapse images we found that fusion was temporally related to the formation of coherent and spatially isolated bands of actin filaments that originated in cell bodies and extended into the fusopods. These bands of actin filaments were involved in cell fusion after approaching cells formed initial contacts. We conclude that the formation of fusopods is regulated by Rac1 to initiate intercellular contact during osteoclastogenesis. This step is followed by the tightly regulated assembly of bands of actin filaments in fusopods, which lead to closure of the intercellular gap and finally, cell fusion. These novel, actin-dependent processes are important for fusion processes in osteoclastogenesis.

  17. Upregulation of two actin genes and redistribution of actin during diapause and cold stress in the northern house mosquito, Culex pipiens.

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Mijung; Robich, Rebecca M.; Rinehart, Joseph P.; Denlinger, David L.

    2007-01-01

    Two actin genes cloned from Culex pipiens L. are upregulated during adult diapause. Though actins 1 and 2 were expressed throughout diapause, both genes were most highly expressed early in diapause. These changes in gene expression were accompanied by a conspicuous redistribution of polymerized actin that was most pronounced in the midguts of diapausing mosquitoes that were exposed to low temperature. In nondiapausing mosquitoes reared at 25°C and in diapausing mosquitoes reared at 18°C, polymerized actin was clustered at high concentrations at the intersections of the muscle fibers that form the midgut musculature. When adults 7–10 days post-eclosion were exposed to low temperature (-5°C for 12h), the polymerized actin was evenly distributed along the muscle fibers in both nondiapausing and diapausing mosquitoes. Exposure of older adults (1month post-eclosion) to low temperature (−5°C for 12h) elicited an even greater distribution of polymerized actin, an effect that was especially pronounced in diapausing mosquitoes. These changes in gene expression and actin distribution suggest a role for actins in enhancing survival of diapausing adults during the low temperatures of winter by fortification of the cytoskeleton. PMID:17078965

  18. Characterization and regulation of an additional actin-filament-binding site in large isoforms of the stereocilia actin-bundling protein espin.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Lili; Beeler, Dina M; Bartles, James R

    2014-03-15

    The espin actin-bundling proteins, which are produced as isoforms of different sizes from a single gene, are required for the growth of hair cell stereocilia. We have characterized an additional actin-filament-binding site present in the extended amino-termini of large espin isoforms. Constitutively active in espin 2, the site increased the size of actin bundles formed in vitro and inhibited actin fluorescence recovery in microvilli. In espin 1, which has an N-terminal ankyrin repeat domain, the site was autoinhibited by binding between the ankyrin repeat domain and a peptide near the actin-binding site. Deletion of this peptide from espin 1 activated its actin-binding site. The peptide resembled tail homology domain I of myosin III, a ligand of the ankyrin repeat domain localized with espin 1 at the tip of stereocilia. A myosin III tail homology domain I peptide, but not scrambled control peptides, inhibited internal binding of the ankyrin repeat domain and released the espin 1 actin-binding site from autoinhibition. Thus, this regulation could result in local activation of the additional actin-binding site of espin 1 by myosin III in stereocilia.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

  20. Cell Elasticity Is Regulated by the Tropomyosin Isoform Composition of the Actin Cytoskeleton

    PubMed Central

    Jalilian, Iman; Heu, Celine; Cheng, Hong; Freittag, Hannah; Desouza, Melissa; Stehn, Justine R.; Bryce, Nicole S.; Whan, Renee M.; Hardeman, Edna C.

    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. PMID:25978408

  1. Cytochemical evidence for the presence of actin in the nucleus of the voodoo lily appendix.

    PubMed

    Skubatz, H; Orellana, M V; Yablonka-Reuveni, Z

    2000-08-01

    Immunoflorescence microscopy of sections of the voodoo lily Sauromatum guttatum appendix stained with monoclonal antibodies against alpha-smooth muscle actin and cytoplasmic actin revealed different staining intensity of different parts of the cell. The anti-cytoplasmic-actin recognized antigens present mainly in the cytoplasm, and the anti-alpha-smooth muscle-actin recognized more intensively antigens present in the nuclei. A positive staining of the nucleus was also obtained with FITC-phalloidin confirming the presence of actin in its filamenous form in the nucleus. The presence of a nuclear alpha-smooth muscle-actin-like protein was further confirmed by confocal laser microscopy. On Western blots, the two anti-actins labelled a protein band that comigrated with standard actin at the approximate molecular weight of 43 kDa. Several other proteins interacted with the two antibodies to a different degree. The monoclonal antibodies against beta-tubulin subunit stained only the periphery of the cytoplasm and anti-pan cytoplasmic myosin stained the cytoplasm weakly. On a Western blot, anti-beta-tubulin subunit primarily recognized a protein band at the appropriate molecular weight of 50 kDa. This is the first cytochemical evidence for the presence of alpha-smooth muscle-actin-like protein in the plant nucleus.

  2. The long journey: actin on the road to pro- and eukaryotic cells.

    PubMed

    Jockusch, Brigitte M; Graumann, Peter L

    2011-01-01

    Actin-like proteins comprise a large group of polymorphic proteins that readily form filaments engaged in cytoskeletal functions. Various members have been identified in prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells, e.g. MreB, ParM and Ta0583, and actin and the actin-related proteins, ARPs, respectively. Therefore, it is assumed that an ancestor of actin/MreB/ParM already existed in the last common progenitor of all cells. In eubacteria and archaea, actin-like proteins are either membrane-associated or freely soluble, and their activities are related to motility, cell shape maintenance, subcellular organization and cell cycle progression. In eukaryotes, all these functions are executed by actin in various isoforms. Additional functions have been described for actin and ARPs in the nucleus of the eukaryotic cell, and some of those were also discovered in prokaryotes. In the current essay, we compare structures and selected functions of prokaryotic and eukaryotic actins and discuss various aspects on how actins may have found their way into bacteria, into the eukaryotic cytoplasm and into the nuclear compartment.

  3. Association of cortactin with dynamic actin in lamellipodia and on endosomal vesicles.

    PubMed

    Kaksonen, M; Peng, H B; Rauvala, H

    2000-12-01

    We have used fluorescent protein tagging to study the localization and dynamics of the actin-binding protein cortactin in living NIH 3T3 fibroblast cells. Cortactin was localized to active lamellipodia and to small cytoplasmic spots. Time-lapse imaging revealed that these cortactin labeled structures were very dynamic. In the lamellipodia, cortactin labeled structures formed at the leading edge and then moved toward the cell center. Experiments with green fluorescent protein (GFP)-tagged actin showed that cortactin movement was coincident with the actin retrograde flow in the lamellipodia. Cytoplasmic cortactin spots also contained F-actin and were propelled by actin polymerization. Arp3, a component of the arp2/3 complex which is a key regulator of actin polymerization, co-localized with cortactin. Cytoplasmic cortactin-labeled spots were found to be associated with endosomal vesicles. Association was asymmetric and approximately half of the endosomes were associated with cortactin spots. Time-lapse imaging suggested that these cortactin and F-actin-containing spots propelled endosomes. Actin polymerization based propulsion may be a common mechanism for endomembrane trafficking in the same manner as used in the plasma membrane protrusions. As cortactin is known to interact with membrane-associated signaling proteins it could have a role in linking signaling complexes with dynamic actin on endosomes and in lamellipodia.

  4. Drosophila singed, a fascin homolog, is required for actin bundle formation during oogenesis and bristle extension

    PubMed Central

    1994-01-01

    Drosophila singed mutants were named for their gnarled bristle phenotype but severe alleles are also female sterile. Recently, singed protein was shown to have 35% peptide identity with echinoderm fascin. Fascin is found in actin filament bundles in microvilli of sea urchin eggs and in filopodial extensions in coelomocytes. We show that Drosophila singed is required for actin filament bundle formation in the cytoplasm of nurse cells during oogenesis; in severe mutants, the absence of cytoplasmic actin filament bundles allows nurse cell nuclei to lodge in ring canals and block nurse cell cytoplasm transport. Singed is also required for organized actin filament bundle formation in the cellular extension that forms a bristle; in severe mutants, the small disorganized actin filament bundles lack structural integrity and allow bristles to bend and branch during extension. Singed protein is also expressed in migratory cells of the developing egg chamber and in the socket cell of the developing bristle, but no defect is observed in these cells in singed mutants. Purified, bacterially expressed singed protein bundles actin filaments in vitro with the same stoichiometry reported for purified sea urchin fascin. Singed-saturated actin bundles have a molar ratio of singed/actin of approximately 1:4.3 and a transverse cross-banding pattern of 12 nm seen using electron microscopy. Our results suggest that singed protein is required for actin filament bundle formation and is a Drosophila homolog of echinoderm fascin. PMID:8163553

  5. The anti-proliferative agent jasplakinolide rearranges the actin cytoskeleton of plant cells.

    PubMed

    Sawitzky, H; Liebe, S; Willingale-Theune, J; Menzel, D

    1999-06-01

    In the present study, we have characterized the action of the natural cyclodepsipeptide jasplakinolide (JAS) on the cytoplasmic architecture, actin-based cytoplasmic motility, and the organization of the actin cytoskeleton in selected examples of green algae (Acetabularia, Pseudobryopsis and Nitella) and higher plant cells (Allium bulb scale cells and Sinapis root hairs). JAS was capable of influencing the actin cytoskeleton and inhibiting cytoplasmic streaming in a differential, cell type-specific manner. With the exception of Nitella, two consecutive responses were observed upon incubation with 2.5 microM JAS: In the first phase cytoplasmic streaming increased transiently alongside with minor modifications of the actin cytoskeleton in the form of adventitious actin spots and spikes appearing throughout the cell cortex in addition to the normal actin bundle system typical for each cell type. In the second phase, cytoplasmic streaming stopped and the actin cytoskeleton became heavily reorganized into shorter, straight, more and more randomly oriented bundle segments. JAS exerted severe long-term effects on the actin cytoskeleton when treatments exceeded 30min at a concentration of 2.5 microM. An in situ competition assay using equimolar concentrations of JAS and FITC-phalloidin suggested that JAS has a phalloidin-like action. Effects of JAS were significantly different from those of cytochalasin D with respect to the resulting degree of perturbance of cytoplasmic organization, the distribution of actin filaments and the speed of reversibility.

  6. Myosin II ATPase activity mediates the long-term potentiation-induced exodus of stable F-actin bound by drebrin A from dendritic spines.

    PubMed

    Mizui, Toshiyuki; Sekino, Yuko; Yamazaki, Hiroyuki; Ishizuka, Yuta; Takahashi, Hideto; Kojima, Nobuhiko; Kojima, Masami; Shirao, Tomoaki

    2014-01-01

    The neuronal actin-binding protein drebrin A forms a stable structure with F-actin in dendritic spines. NMDA receptor activation causes an exodus of F-actin bound by drebrin A (DA-actin) from dendritic spines, suggesting a pivotal role for DA-actin exodus in synaptic plasticity. We quantitatively assessed the extent of DA-actin localization to spines using the spine-dendrite ratio of drebrin A in cultured hippocampal neurons, and found that (1) chemical long-term potentiation (LTP) stimulation induces rapid DA-actin exodus and subsequent DA-actin re-entry in dendritic spines, (2) Ca(2+) influx through NMDA receptors regulates the exodus and the basal accumulation of DA-actin, and (3) the DA-actin exodus is blocked by myosin II ATPase inhibitor, but is not blocked by myosin light chain kinase (MLCK) or Rho-associated kinase (ROCK) inhibitors. These results indicate that myosin II mediates the interaction between NMDA receptor activation and DA-actin exodus in LTP induction. Furthermore, myosin II seems to be activated by a rapid actin-linked mechanism rather than slow MLC phosphorylation. Thus the myosin-II mediated DA-actin exodus might be an initial event in LTP induction, triggering actin polymerization and spine enlargement.

  7. Actinic cheilitis in dental practice.

    PubMed

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

    2010-06-01

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

  8. Myosin-Va and dynamic actin oppose microtubules to drive long-range organelle transport.

    PubMed

    Evans, Richard D; Robinson, Christopher; Briggs, Deborah A; Tooth, David J; Ramalho, Jose S; Cantero, Marta; Montoliu, Lluis; Patel, Shyamal; Sviderskaya, Elena V; Hume, Alistair N

    2014-08-04

    In animal cells, microtubule and actin tracks and their associated motors (dynein, kinesin, and myosin) are thought to regulate long- and short-range transport, respectively. Consistent with this, microtubules extend from the perinuclear centrosome to the plasma membrane and allow bidirectional cargo transport over long distances (>1 μm). In contrast, actin often comprises a complex network of short randomly oriented filaments, suggesting that myosin motors move cargo short distances. These observations underpin the "highways and local roads" model for transport along microtubule and actin tracks. The "cooperative capture" model exemplifies this view and suggests that melanosome distribution in melanocyte dendrites is maintained by long-range transport on microtubules followed by actin/myosin-Va-dependent tethering. In this study, we used cell normalization technology to quantitatively examine the contribution of microtubules and actin/myosin-Va to organelle distribution in melanocytes. Surprisingly, our results indicate that microtubules are essential for centripetal, but not centrifugal, transport. Instead, we find that microtubules retard a centrifugal transport process that is dependent on myosin-Va and a population of dynamic F-actin. Functional analysis of mutant proteins indicates that myosin-Va works as a transporter dispersing melanosomes along actin tracks whose +/barbed ends are oriented toward the plasma membrane. Overall, our data highlight the role of myosin-Va and actin in transport, and not tethering, and suggest a new model in which organelle distribution is determined by the balance between microtubule-dependent centripetal and myosin-Va/actin-dependent centrifugal transport. These observations appear to be consistent with evidence coming from other systems showing that actin/myosin networks can drive long-distance organelle transport and positioning.

  9. Myosin-Va and Dynamic Actin Oppose Microtubules to Drive Long-Range Organelle Transport

    PubMed Central

    Evans, Richard D.; Robinson, Christopher; Briggs, Deborah A.; Tooth, David J.; Ramalho, Jose S.; Cantero, Marta; Montoliu, Lluis; Patel, Shyamal; Sviderskaya, Elena V.; Hume, Alistair N.

    2014-01-01

    Summary In animal cells, microtubule and actin tracks and their associated motors (dynein, kinesin, and myosin) are thought to regulate long- and short-range transport, respectively [1–8]. Consistent with this, microtubules extend from the perinuclear centrosome to the plasma membrane and allow bidirectional cargo transport over long distances (>1 μm). In contrast, actin often comprises a complex network of short randomly oriented filaments, suggesting that myosin motors move cargo short distances. These observations underpin the “highways and local roads” model for transport along microtubule and actin tracks [2]. The “cooperative capture” model exemplifies this view and suggests that melanosome distribution in melanocyte dendrites is maintained by long-range transport on microtubules followed by actin/myosin-Va-dependent tethering [5, 9]. In this study, we used cell normalization technology to quantitatively examine the contribution of microtubules and actin/myosin-Va to organelle distribution in melanocytes. Surprisingly, our results indicate that microtubules are essential for centripetal, but not centrifugal, transport. Instead, we find that microtubules retard a centrifugal transport process that is dependent on myosin-Va and a population of dynamic F-actin. Functional analysis of mutant proteins indicates that myosin-Va works as a transporter dispersing melanosomes along actin tracks whose +/barbed ends are oriented toward the plasma membrane. Overall, our data highlight the role of myosin-Va and actin in transport, and not tethering, and suggest a new model in which organelle distribution is determined by the balance between microtubule-dependent centripetal and myosin-Va/actin-dependent centrifugal transport. These observations appear to be consistent with evidence coming from other systems showing that actin/myosin networks can drive long-distance organelle transport and positioning [10, 11]. PMID:25065759

  10. Visualizing Actin Architectures in Cells Incubated with Cell-Penetrating Peptides.

    PubMed

    He, Lin; Watson, Peter D; Jones, Arwyn T

    2015-01-01

    Defining the exact role of the actin cytoskeleton in mediating endocytosis through different pathways is a significant challenge. The general consensus is that actin has an important role in organizing the early stages of endocytosis but there is still much to learn. Actin has also been implicated in cell internalization of cell-penetrating peptides (CPPs). It is suggested that CPP variants such as octaarginine (R8) and the HIV Tat peptide induce actin-dependent plasma membrane perturbation and enter via macropinocytosis. Here, we describe confocal microscopy techniques that allow for high-resolution spatial characterization of the actin cytoskeleton in untreated mammalian cells and those incubated with actin-disrupting agents and CPPs. By performing X-Y-Z projection images through different regions of cells to show basal and apical profiles, we initially highlight how these techniques can be used to reveal major differences in cortical and filamentous actin organization between different cell lines. Using these techniques, we demonstrate that the actin-disrupting agent cytochalasin D rapidly changes this framework at concentrations significantly lower than is normally used. Experiments are also performed to highlight that serum starvation significantly sensitizes cells to the effects of R8 on actin-induced ruffling and lamellapodia formation. The techniques described here can be used to gain a higher level of knowledge of the organization of the actin network in individual model cell systems, how this is perturbed using commonly used actin inhibitors, and how plasma membrane reorganization can be induced by the addition of drug delivery vectors such as CPPs.

  11. O'Brien's actinic granuloma: an unusually extensive presentation.

    PubMed

    Lazzarini, Rosana; Rotter, Anita; Farias, Debora Cadore de; Muller, Helena

    2011-01-01

    O'Brien's actinic granuloma is a rare skin disease. Controversy continues over whether it should be considered a specific condition or a form of granuloma annulare located in sun-exposed areas. Its pathogenesis is unknown; however, the most widely accepted hypothesis suggests that solar radiation is the triggering factor. This paper describes the case of a 78-year old, fair-skinned male, who presented with a 10-year history of an infiltrate of annular erythematous papules on his forehead and left malar region. The diagnosis of O'Brien actinic granuloma was established from histopathology, since the clinical condition of the patient was extensive, unlike cases reported in the literature.

  12. The actin-ADP-ribosylating Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin.

    PubMed

    Aktories, Klaus; Barth, Holger

    2004-04-01

    Clostridium botulinum C2 toxin is the prototype of actin-ADP-ribosylating toxins. The toxin consists of the enzyme component C2I and the separated binding/translocation component C2II. C2II is proteolytically activated to form heptamers, which bind the enzyme component. After endocytosis of the receptor-toxin complex, the enzyme component enters the cytosol from an acidic endosomal compartment to modify G-actin at arginine177. Recent data indicate that chaperons are involved in the translocation process of the toxin.

  13. Oral nicotinamide and actinic keratosis: a supplement success story.

    PubMed

    Kim, Burcu; Halliday, Gary M; Damian, Diona L

    2015-01-01

    Nicotinamide has shown potential as a safe and effective intervention for the prevention of malignant and premalignant skin lesions. Recent studies have shown that nicotinamide, in both oral and topical forms, is able to prevent ultraviolet-induced immunosuppression in humans [1,2,3] and mice [4,5]. Immunosuppression is a known factor for the progression of premalignant lesions, such as actinic keratosis [6]. Murine studies have shown that nicotinamide is also able to protect against photocarcinogenesis [4,5]. Preliminary human studies suggest that nicotinamide may help prevent skin cancers and enhance the regression of actinic keratoses.

  14. Actin crosslinkers: repairing the sense of touch.

    PubMed

    Sun, Sean X; Walcott, Sam

    2010-10-26

    Cells use actin bundles infused with myosin to exert contractile forces on the extracellular environment. This active tension is essential for cellular mechanosensation. Now, the role of actin crosslinkers in stabilizing and repairing the actin bundles is coming into clearer view.

  15. Research on the head form design of service robots based on Kansei engineering and BP neural network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Yan; Chen, Gang

    2017-01-01

    It is always a difficult problem to demonstrate the users' perceptual demand in the form design of home service robots. In this paper, the relationship between the design elements of the head form of home service robots and the perceptual evaluation of users is analyzed quantitatively by Kansei engineering and BP neural network. Finally, the aided design system of home service robots' head form is constructed by using VB language with the trained BP network and 3D modeling software. Furthermore, it's considered that the results should be applied to the overall form design of home service robots and the impacts of different design constraints should also be incorporated as the input layer of BP network. Thus the more comprehensive aided design system of home service robots could be established.

  16. 3-Methylhistidine in actin and other muscle proteins

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, P.; Harris, C. I.; Perry, S. V.

    1967-01-01

    1. By the use of the extended elution system for basic amino acid analysis, 3-methylhistidine has been detected in hydrolysates of actin isolated from mammalian, fish and bird skeletal muscle. 2. Evidence is presented to indicate that 3-methylhistidine forms part of the primary structure and that in rabbit actin this residue is restricted to one peptide fraction obtained from the tryptic digest. 3. Rabbit skeletal-muscle actin has a 3-methylhistidine:histidine ratio 1:7·6, indicating a minimum molecular weight of 47600. 4. Adult rabbit myosin contains approximately 2 3-methylhistidine residues/mol. These residues are localized in the heavy meromyosin part of the molecule, and are restricted to the major component obtained after succinylation. ImagesFig. 1.Fig. 2.Fig. 3. PMID:6056634

  17. The actin crosslinking protein palladin modulates force generation and mechanosensitivity of tumor associated fibroblasts

    PubMed Central

    Azatov, Mikheil; Goicoechea, Silvia M.; Otey, Carol A.; Upadhyaya, Arpita

    2016-01-01

    Cells organize actin filaments into higher-order structures by regulating the composition, distribution and concentration of actin crosslinkers. Palladin is an actin crosslinker found in the lamellar actin network and stress fibers, which are critical for mechanosensing of the environment. Palladin also serves as a molecular scaffold for α-actinin, another key actin crosslinker. By virtue of its close interactions with actomyosin structures in the cell, palladin may play an important role in cell mechanics. However, the role of palladin in cellular force generation and mechanosensing has not been studied. Here, we investigate the role of palladin in regulating the plasticity of the actin cytoskeleton and cellular force generation in response to alterations in substrate stiffness. Traction force microscopy revealed that tumor-associated fibroblasts generate larger forces on substrates of increased stiffness. Contrary to expectations, knocking down palladin increased the forces generated by cells and inhibited their ability to sense substrate stiffness for very stiff gels. This was accompanied by significant differences in actin organization, adhesion dynamics and altered myosin organization in palladin knock-down cells. Our results suggest that actin crosslinkers such as palladin and myosin motors coordinate for optimal cell function and to prevent aberrant behavior as in cancer metastasis. PMID:27353427

  18. Instantaneous inactivation of cofilin reveals its function of F-actin disassembly in lamellipodia.

    PubMed

    Vitriol, Eric A; Wise, Ariel L; Berginski, Mathew E; Bamburg, James R; Zheng, James Q

    2013-07-01

    Cofilin is a key regulator of the actin cytoskeleton. It can sever actin filaments, accelerate filament disassembly, act as a nucleation factor, recruit or antagonize other actin regulators, and control the pool of polymerization-competent actin monomers. In cells these actions have complex functional outputs. The timing and localization of cofilin activity are carefully regulated, and thus global, long-term perturbations may not be sufficient to probe its precise function. To better understand cofilin's spatiotemporal action in cells, we implemented chromophore-assisted laser inactivation (CALI) to instantly and specifically inactivate it. In addition to globally inhibiting actin turnover, CALI of cofilin generated several profound effects on the lamellipodia, including an increase of F-actin, a rearward expansion of the actin network, and a reduction in retrograde flow speed. These results support the hypothesis that the principal role of cofilin in lamellipodia at steady state is to break down F-actin, control filament turnover, and regulate the rate of retrograde flow.

  19. Site-specific cation release drives actin filament severing by vertebrate cofilin

    PubMed Central

    Kang, Hyeran; Bradley, Michael J.; Cao, Wenxiang; Zhou, Kaifeng; Grintsevich, Elena E.; Michelot, Alphée; Sindelar, Charles V.; Hochstrasser, Mark; De La Cruz, Enrique M.

    2014-01-01

    Actin polymerization powers the directed motility of eukaryotic cells. Sustained motility requires rapid filament turnover and subunit recycling. The essential regulatory protein cofilin accelerates network remodeling by severing actin filaments and increasing the concentration of ends available for elongation and subunit exchange. Although cofilin effects on actin filament assembly dynamics have been extensively studied, the molecular mechanism of cofilin-induced filament severing is not understood. Here we demonstrate that actin filament severing by vertebrate cofilin is driven by the linked dissociation of a single cation that controls filament structure and mechanical properties. Vertebrate cofilin only weakly severs Saccharomyces cerevisiae actin filaments lacking this “stiffness cation” unless a stiffness cation-binding site is engineered into the actin molecule. Moreover, vertebrate cofilin rescues the viability of a S. cerevisiae cofilin deletion mutant only when the stiffness cation site is simultaneously introduced into actin, demonstrating that filament severing is the essential function of cofilin in cells. This work reveals that site-specific interactions with cations serve a key regulatory function in actin filament fragmentation and dynamics. PMID:25468977

  20. Disease-associated mutant alpha-actinin-4 reveals a mechanism for regulating its F-actin-binding affinity.

    PubMed

    Weins, Astrid; Schlondorff, Johannes S; Nakamura, Fumihiko; Denker, Bradley M; Hartwig, John H; Stossel, Thomas P; Pollak, Martin R

    2007-10-09

    Alpha-actinin-4 is a widely expressed protein that employs an actin-binding site with two calponin homology domains to crosslink actin filaments (F-actin) in a Ca(2+)-sensitive manner in vitro. An inherited, late-onset form of kidney failure is caused by point mutations in the alpha-actinin-4 actin-binding domain. Here we show that alpha-actinin-4/F-actin aggregates, observed in vivo in podocytes of humans and mice with disease, likely form as a direct result of the increased actin-binding affinity of the protein. We document that exposure of a buried actin-binding site 1 in mutant alpha-actinin-4 causes an increase in its actin-binding affinity, abolishes its Ca(2+) regulation in vitro, and diverts its normal localization from actin stress fibers and focal adhesions in vivo. Inactivation of this buried actin-binding site returns the affinity of the mutant to that of the WT protein and abolishes aggregate formation in cells. In vitro, actin filaments crosslinked by the mutant alpha-actinin-4 exhibit profound changes of structural and biomechanical properties compared with WT alpha-actinin-4. On a molecular level, our findings elucidate the physiological importance of a dynamic interaction of alpha-actinin with F-actin in podocytes in vivo. We propose that a conformational change with full exposure of actin-binding site 1 could function as a switch mechanism to regulate the actin-binding affinity of alpha-actinin and possibly other calponin homology domain proteins under physiological conditions.

  1. An 8-GW long-pulse generator based on Tesla transformer and pulse forming network.

    PubMed

    Su, Jiancang; Zhang, Xibo; Li, Rui; Zhao, Liang; Sun, Xu; Wang, Limin; Zeng, Bo; Cheng, Jie; Wang, Ying; Peng, Jianchang; Song, Xiaoxin

    2014-06-01

    A long-pulse generator TPG700L based on a Tesla transformer and a series pulse forming network (PFN) is constructed to generate intense electron beams for the purpose of high power microwave (HPM) generation. The TPG700L mainly consists of a 12-stage PFN, a built-in Tesla transformer in a pulse forming line, a three-electrode gas switch, a transmission line with a trigger, and a load. The Tesla transformer and the compact PFN are the key technologies for the development of the TPG700L. This generator can output electrical pulses with a width as long as 200 ns at a level of 8 GW and a repetition rate of 50 Hz. When used to drive a relative backward wave oscillator for HPM generation, the electrical pulse width is about 100 ns on a voltage level of 520 kV. Factors affecting the pulse waveform of the TPG700L are also discussed. At present, the TPG700L performs well for long-pulse HPM generation in our laboratory.

  2. Differentially-charged and sequentially-switched square-wave pulse forming network

    DOEpatents

    North, G.G.; Vogilin, G.E.

    1980-04-01

    Disclosed is a pulse forming network for delivering a high-energy square-wave pulse to a load, including a series of inductive-capacitive sections wherein the capacitors are differentially charged higher further from the load. Each charged capacitor is isolated from adjacent sections and the load by means of a normally open switch at the output of each section. The switch between the load and the closest section to the load is closed to begin discharge of the capacitor in that section into the load. During discharge of each capacitor, the voltage thereacross falls to a predetermined potential with respect to the potential across the capacitor in the next adjacent section further from the load. When this potential is reached, it is used to close the switch in the adjacent section further from the load and thereby apply the charge in that section to the load through the adjacent section toward the load. Each successive section further from the load is sequentially switched in this manner to continuously and evenly supply energy to the load over the period of the pulse, with the differentially charged capacitors providing higher potentials away from the load to compensate for the voltage drop across the resistance of each inductor. This arrangement is low in cost and yet provides a high-energy pulse in an acceptable square-wave form. 5 figs.

  3. Differentially-charged and sequentially-switched square-wave pulse forming network

    DOEpatents

    North, George G. [Stockton, CA; Vogilin, George E. [Livermore, CA

    1980-04-01

    A pulse forming network for delivering a high-energy square-wave pulse to a load, including a series of inductive-capacitive sections wherein the capacitors are differentially charged higher further from the load. Each charged capacitor is isolated from adjacent sections and the load by means of a normally open switch at the output of each section. The switch between the load and the closest section to the load is closed to begin discharge of the capacitor in that section into the load. During discharge of each capacitor, the voltage thereacross falls to a predetermined potential with respect to the potential across the capacitor in the next adjacent section further from the load. When this potential is reached, it is used to close the switch in the adjacent section further from the load and thereby apply the charge in that section to the load through the adjacent section toward the load. Each successive section further from the load is sequentially switched in this manner to continuously and evenly supply energy to the load over the period of the pulse, with the differentially charged capacitors providing higher potentials away from the load to compensate for the voltage drop across the resistance of each inductor. This arrangement is low in cost and yet provides a high-energy pulse in an acceptable square-wave form.

  4. An 8-GW long-pulse generator based on Tesla transformer and pulse forming network

    SciTech Connect

    Su, Jiancang; Zhang, Xibo; Li, Rui; Zhao, Liang Sun, Xu; Wang, Limin; Zeng, Bo; Cheng, Jie; Wang, Ying; Peng, Jianchang; Song, Xiaoxin

    2014-06-15

    A long-pulse generator TPG700L based on a Tesla transformer and a series pulse forming network (PFN) is constructed to generate intense electron beams for the purpose of high power microwave (HPM) generation. The TPG700L mainly consists of a 12-stage PFN, a built-in Tesla transformer in a pulse forming line, a three-electrode gas switch, a transmission line with a trigger, and a load. The Tesla transformer and the compact PFN are the key technologies for the development of the TPG700L. This generator can output electrical pulses with a width as long as 200 ns at a level of 8 GW and a repetition rate of 50 Hz. When used to drive a relative backward wave oscillator for HPM generation, the electrical pulse width is about 100 ns on a voltage level of 520 kV. Factors affecting the pulse waveform of the TPG700L are also discussed. At present, the TPG700L performs well for long-pulse HPM generation in our laboratory.

  5. Generation of membrane structures during phagocytosis and chemotaxis of macrophages: role and regulation of the actin cytoskeleton

    PubMed Central

    Rougerie, Pablo; Miskolci, Veronika; Cox, Dianne

    2013-01-01

    Summary Macrophages are best known for their protective search and destroy functions against invading micro-organisms. These processes are commonly known as chemotaxis and phagocytosis. Both of these processes require actin cytoskeletal remodeling to produce distinct F-actin rich membrane structures called lamellipodia and phagocytic cups. This review will focus on the mechanisms by which macrophages regulate actin polymerization through initial receptor signaling and subsequent Arp2/3 activation by nucleation promoting factors like the WASP/WAVE family, followed by remodeling of actin networks to produce these very distinct structures. PMID:24117824

  6. Using The Finite Element Method And Artificial Neural Networks To Predict Ductile Fracture In Cold Forming Processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klocke, F.; Breuer, D.

    2004-06-01

    Apart from the calculation of the plastic formability of metals the prediction of ductile cracks in cold forming processes is very important in order to design these processes efficiently. Therefore, many crack criteria have been developed and implemented in several FEM Programs. These criteria scale the crack prediction down to one value and they are qualified to detect the most endangered areas occurring cracks during the forming process quite well. All these criteria have two significant disadvantages: on one hand none of these criteria consider the whole forming history and on the other hand the detected critical value is not applicable to other forming processes. Therefore a new method to predict ductile fracture in cold forming processes has been developed. Various upsetting, bending and extrusion tests were designed in order to provoke a failure during the forming process. All these processes were modelled by means of the Finite Element Method to acquire the whole forming history (including the first principle stress, the equivalent stress and the equivalent strain starting with the first deformation to the first crack occurrence) for the area where the first fracture occurs. Basal in the results way a database with forming histories which all will lead to an failure during a forming process was built up. This database is used to train an artificial neural network. The artificial neural network will be able to predict a failure for new forming histories. The paper gives an overview over the use of the artificial neural network, the calculation of the forming histories and the used forming processes as well as the interaction between the Finite Element Method and the artificial neural network.

  7. The effects of collapsing factors on F-actin content and microtubule distribution of Helisoma growth cones.

    PubMed

    Torreano, Paul J; Waterman-Storer, Clare M; Cohan, Christopher S

    2005-03-01

    Growth cone collapsing factors induce growth cone collapse or repulsive growth cone turning by interacting with membrane receptors that induce alterations in the growth cone cytoskeleton. A common change induced by collapsing factors in the cytoskeleton of the peripheral domain, the thin lamellopodial area of growth cones, is a decline in the number of radially aligned F-actin bundles that form the core of filopodia. The present study examined whether ML-7, a myosin light chain kinase inhibitor, serotonin, a neurotransmitter and TPA, an activator of protein kinase C, which induce growth cone collapse of Helisoma growth cones, depolymerized or debundled F-actin. We report that these collapsing factors had different effects. ML-7 induced F-actin reorganization consistent with debundling whereas serotonin and TPA predominately depolymerized and possibly debundled F-actin. Additionally, these collapsing factors induced the formation of a dense actin-ring around the central domain, the thicker proximal area of growth cones [Zhou and Cohan, 2001: J. Cell Biol. 153:1071-1083]. The formation of the actin-ring occurred subsequent to the loss of actin bundles. The ML-7-induced actin-ring was found to inhibit microtubule extension into the P-domain. Thus, ML-7, serotonin, and TPA induce growth cone collapse associated with a decline in radially aligned F-actin bundles through at least two mechanisms involving debundling of actin filaments and/or actin depolymerization.

  8. Morphological Transformation and Force Generation of Active Cytoskeletal Networks

    PubMed Central

    Maruri, Daniel; Kamm, Roger D.

    2017-01-01

    Cells assemble numerous types of actomyosin bundles that generate contractile forces for biological processes, such as cytokinesis and cell migration. One example of contractile bundles is a transverse arc that forms via actomyosin-driven condensation of actin filaments in the lamellipodia of migrating cells and exerts significant forces on the surrounding environments. Structural reorganization of a network into a bundle facilitated by actomyosin contractility is a physiologically relevant and biophysically interesting process. Nevertheless, it remains elusive how actin filaments are reoriented, buckled, and bundled as well as undergo tension buildup during the structural reorganization. In this study, using an agent-based computational model, we demonstrated how the interplay between the density of myosin motors and cross-linking proteins and the rigidity, initial orientation, and turnover of actin filaments regulates the morphological transformation of a cross-linked actomyosin network into a bundle and the buildup of tension occurring during the transformation. PMID:28114384

  9. The nitrate reductase inhibitor, tungsten, disrupts actin microfilaments in Zea mays L.

    PubMed

    Adamakis, Ioannis-Dimosthenis S; Panteris, Emmanuel; Eleftheriou, Eleftherios P

    2014-05-01

    Tungsten is a widely used inhibitor of nitrate reductase, applied to diminish the nitric oxide levels in plants. It was recently shown that tungsten also has heavy metal attributes. Since information about the toxic effects of tungsten on actin is limited, and considering that actin microfilaments are involved in the entry of tungsten inside plant cells, the effects of tungsten on them were studied in Zea mays seedlings. Treatments with sodium tungstate for 3, 6, 12 or 24 h were performed on intact seedlings and seedlings with truncated roots. Afterwards, actin microfilaments in meristematic root and leaf tissues were stained with fluorescent phalloidin, and the specimens were examined by confocal laser scanning microscopy. While the actin microfilament network was well organized in untreated seedlings, in tungstate-treated ones it was disrupted in a time-dependent manner. In protodermal root cells, the effects of tungsten were stronger as cortical microfilaments were almost completely depolymerized and the intracellular ones appeared highly bundled. Fluorescence intensity measurements confirmed the above results. In the meristematic leaf tissue of intact seedlings, no depolymerization of actin microfilaments was noticed. However, when root tips were severed prior to tungstate application, both cortical and endoplasmic actin networks of leaf cells were disrupted and bundled after 24 h of treatment. The differential response of root and leaf tissues to tungsten toxicity may be due to differential penetration and absorption, while the effects on actin microfilaments could not be attributed to the nitric oxide depletion by tungsten.

  10. Actin- and myosin-like filaments in rat brain pericytes.

    PubMed

    Le Beux, Y J; Willemot, J

    1978-04-01

    Heavy meromyosin (HMM) labeling was used to identify the nature of the filaments which form bundles in the cytoplasm of the pericytes in brain tissue. Rat brain tissue pieces were incubated in glycerol solutions at 4 degrees and then transferred into buffer (pH 7.0), (1) without HMM, (2) with HMM, (3) with HMM + 5 mM ATP, and (4) with HMM + 2.5 mM Na+ pyrophosphate. In pericytes from untreated tissue, smooth-surfaced microfilaments, averaging 6 nm in diameter, appear to branch and anastomose and to anchor on the plasma membrane. After exposure to HMM, the number and the density of the microfilaments are strikingly increased. These tightly-packed microfilaments are now heavily coated with exogeneous HMM thus increasing in width to 18-20 mm. They intertwine in closely-woven networks. After incubation in HMM solutions containing ATP or Na+ phosphate, they are no longer coated with thick sidearms. It can thus be concluded that these microfilaments are of actin-like nature. In addition, after incubation in ATP, they are intermingled with, and converge onto the surfaces of, thick, tapered filaments, which we have tentatively identified as of myosin-like nature. Thus, it appears that certain of the major elements necessary for contraction are present in brain pericytes.

  11. Mechanism of Actin-Based Motility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pantaloni, Dominique; Le Clainche, Christophe; Carlier, Marie-France

    2001-05-01

    Spatially controlled polymerization of actin is at the origin of cell motility and is responsible for the formation of cellular protrusions like lamellipodia. The pathogens Listeria monocytogenes and Shigella flexneri, which undergo actin-based propulsion, are acknowledged models of the leading edge of lamellipodia. Actin-based motility of the bacteria or of functionalized microspheres can be reconstituted in vitro from only five pure proteins. Movement results from the regulated site-directed treadmilling of actin filaments, consistent with observations of actin dynamics in living motile cells and with the biochemical properties of the components of the synthetic motility medium.

  12. Two-tiered coupling between flowing actin and immobilized N-cadherin/catenin complexes in neuronal growth cones

    PubMed Central

    Garcia, Mikael; Leduc, Cécile; Lagardère, Matthieu; Argento, Amélie; Sibarita, Jean-Baptiste; Thoumine, Olivier

    2015-01-01

    Neuronal growth cones move forward by dynamically connecting actin-based motility to substrate adhesion, but the mechanisms at the individual molecular level remain unclear. We cultured primary neurons on N-cadherin–coated micropatterned substrates, and imaged adhesion and cytoskeletal proteins at the ventral surface of growth cones using single particle tracking combined to photoactivated localization microscopy (sptPALM). We demonstrate transient interactions in the second time scale between flowing actin filaments and immobilized N-cadherin/catenin complexes, translating into a local reduction of the actin retrograde flow. Normal actin flow on micropatterns was rescued by expression of a dominant negative N-cadherin construct competing for the coupling between actin and endogenous N-cadherin. Fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP) experiments confirmed the differential kinetics of actin and N-cadherin, and further revealed a 20% actin population confined at N-cadherin micropatterns, contributing to local actin accumulation. Computer simulations with relevant kinetic parameters modeled N-cadherin and actin turnover well, validating this mechanism. Such a combination of short- and long-lived interactions between the motile actin network and spatially restricted adhesive complexes represents a two-tiered clutch mechanism likely to sustain dynamic environment sensing and provide the force necessary for growth cone migration. PMID:26038554

  13. Integrative microRNA-gene expression network analysis in genetic hypercalciuric stone-forming rat kidney

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Yuchao; Qin, Baolong; Hu, Henglong; Zhang, Jiaqiao; Wang, Yufeng; Wang, Qing

    2016-01-01

    Background. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) influence a variety of biological functions by regulating gene expression post-transcriptionally. Aberrant miRNA expression has been associated with many human diseases. Urolithiasis is a common disease, and idiopathic hypercalciuria (IH) is an important risk factor for calcium urolithiasis. However, miRNA expression patterns and their biological functions in urolithiasis remain unknown. Methods and Results. A multi-step approach combining microarray miRNA and mRNA expression profile and bioinformatics analysis was adopted to analyze dysregulated miRNAs and genes in genetic hypercalciuric stone-forming (GHS) rat kidneys, using normal Sprague-Dawley (SD) rats as controls. We identified 2418 mRNAs and 19 miRNAs as significantly differentially expressed, over 700 gene ontology (GO) terms and 83 KEGG pathways that were significantly enriched in GHS rats. In addition, we constructed an miRNA-gene network that suggested that rno-miR-674-5p, rno-miR-672-5p, rno-miR-138-5p and rno-miR-21-3p may play important roles in the regulatory network. Furthermore, signal-net analysis suggested that NF-kappa B likely plays a crucial role in hypercalciuria urolithiasis. Conclusions. This study presents a global view of mRNA and miRNA expression in GHS rat kidneys, and suggests that miRNAs may be important in the regulation of hypercalciuria. The data provide valuable insights for future research, which should aim at validating the role of the genes featured here in the pathophysiology of hypercalciuria. PMID:27069814

  14. Nuclear Actin in Development and Transcriptional Reprogramming.

    PubMed

    Misu, Shinji; Takebayashi, Marina; Miyamoto, Kei

    2017-01-01

    Actin is a highly abundant protein in eukaryotic cells and dynamically changes its polymerized states with the help of actin-binding proteins. Its critical function as a constituent of cytoskeleton has been well-documented. Growing evidence demonstrates that actin is also present in nuclei, referred to as nuclear actin, and is involved in a number of nuclear processes, including transcriptional regulation and chromatin remodeling. The contribution of nuclear actin to transcriptional regulation can be explained by its direct interaction with transcription machineries and chromatin remodeling factors and by controlling the activities of transcription factors. In both cases, polymerized states of nuclear actin affect the transcriptional outcome. Nuclear actin also plays an important role in activating strongly silenced gene