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Sample records for actin nucleation factor

  1. Actin nucleation and elongation factors: mechanisms and interplay.

    PubMed

    Chesarone, Melissa A; Goode, Bruce L

    2009-02-01

    Cells require actin nucleators to catalyze the de novo assembly of filaments and actin elongation factors to control the rate and extent of polymerization. Nucleation and elongation factors identified to date include Arp2/3 complex, formins, Ena/VASP, and newcomers Spire, Cobl, and Lmod. Here, we discuss recent advances in understanding their activities and mechanisms and new evidence for their cooperation and interaction in vivo. Earlier models had suggested that different nucleators function independently to assemble distinct actin arrays. However, more recent observations indicate that the construction of most cellular actin networks depends on the activities of multiple actin assembly-promoting factors working in concert.

  2. Actin filament nucleation and elongation factors--structure-function relationships.

    PubMed

    Dominguez, Roberto

    2009-01-01

    The spontaneous and unregulated polymerization of actin filaments is inhibited in cells by actin monomer-binding proteins such as profilin and Tbeta4. Eukaryotic cells and certain pathogens use filament nucleators to stabilize actin polymerization nuclei, whose formation is rate-limiting. Known filament nucleators include the Arp2/3 complex and its large family of nucleation promoting factors (NPFs), formins, Spire, Cobl, VopL/VopF, TARP and Lmod. These molecules control the time and location for polymerization, and additionally influence the structures of the actin networks that they generate. Filament nucleators are generally unrelated, but with the exception of formins they all use the WASP-Homology 2 domain (WH2 or W), a small and versatile actin-binding motif, for interaction with actin. A common architecture, found in Spire, Cobl and VopL/VopF, consists of tandem W domains that bind three to four actin subunits to form a nucleus. Structural considerations suggest that NPFs-Arp2/3 complex can also be viewed as a specialized form of tandem W-based nucleator. Formins are unique in that they use the formin-homology 2 (FH2) domain for interaction with actin and promote not only nucleation, but also processive barbed end elongation. In contrast, the elongation function among W-based nucleators has been "outsourced" to a dedicated family of proteins, Eva/VASP, which are related to WASP-family NPFs.

  3. Nanoscale segregation of actin nucleation and elongation factors determines dendritic spine protrusion

    PubMed Central

    Chazeau, Anaël; Mehidi, Amine; Nair, Deepak; Gautier, Jérémie J; Leduc, Cécile; Chamma, Ingrid; Kage, Frieda; Kechkar, Adel; Thoumine, Olivier; Rottner, Klemens; Choquet, Daniel; Gautreau, Alexis; Sibarita, Jean-Baptiste; Giannone, Grégory

    2014-01-01

    Actin dynamics drive morphological remodeling of neuronal dendritic spines and changes in synaptic transmission. Yet, the spatiotemporal coordination of actin regulators in spines is unknown. Using single protein tracking and super-resolution imaging, we revealed the nanoscale organization and dynamics of branched F-actin regulators in spines. Branched F-actin nucleation occurs at the PSD vicinity, while elongation occurs at the tip of finger-like protrusions. This spatial segregation differs from lamellipodia where both branched F-actin nucleation and elongation occur at protrusion tips. The PSD is a persistent confinement zone for IRSp53 and the WAVE complex, an activator of the Arp2/3 complex. In contrast, filament elongators like VASP and formin-like protein-2 move outwards from the PSD with protrusion tips. Accordingly, Arp2/3 complexes associated with F-actin are immobile and surround the PSD. Arp2/3 and Rac1 GTPase converge to the PSD, respectively, by cytosolic and free-diffusion on the membrane. Enhanced Rac1 activation and Shank3 over-expression, both associated with spine enlargement, induce delocalization of the WAVE complex from the PSD. Thus, the specific localization of branched F-actin regulators in spines might be reorganized during spine morphological remodeling often associated with synaptic plasticity. PMID:25293574

  4. Actin nucleators in the nucleus: an emerging theme.

    PubMed

    Weston, Louise; Coutts, Amanda S; La Thangue, Nicholas B

    2012-08-01

    Actin is an integral component of the cytoskeleton, forming a plethora of macromolecular structures that mediate various cellular functions. The formation of such structures relies on the ability of actin monomers to associate into polymers, and this process is regulated by actin nucleation factors. These factors use monomeric actin pools at specific cellular locations, thereby permitting rapid actin filament formation when required. It has now been established that actin is also present in the nucleus, where it is implicated in chromatin remodelling and the regulation of eukaryotic gene transcription. Notably, the presence of typical actin filaments in the nucleus has not been demonstrated directly. However, studies in recent years have provided evidence for the nuclear localisation of actin nucleation factors that promote cytoplasmic actin polymerisation. Their localisation to the nucleus suggests that these proteins mediate collaboration between the cytoskeleton and the nucleus, which might be dependent on their ability to promote actin polymerisation. The nature of this cooperation remains enigmatic and it will be important to elucidate the physiological relevance of the link between cytoskeletal actin networks and nuclear events. This Commentary explores the current evidence for the nuclear roles of actin nucleation factors. Furthermore, the implication of actin-associated proteins in relaying exogenous signals to the nucleus, particularly in response to cellular stress, will be considered.

  5. Integration of linear and dendritic actin nucleation in Nck-induced actin comets

    PubMed Central

    Borinskaya, Sofya; Velle, Katrina B.; Campellone, Kenneth G.; Talman, Arthur; Alvarez, Diego; Agaisse, Hervé; Wu, Yi I.; Loew, Leslie M.; Mayer, Bruce J.

    2016-01-01

    The Nck adaptor protein recruits cytosolic effectors such as N-WASP that induce localized actin polymerization. Experimental aggregation of Nck SH3 domains at the membrane induces actin comet tails—dynamic, elongated filamentous actin structures similar to those that drive the movement of microbial pathogens such as vaccinia virus. Here we show that experimental manipulation of the balance between unbranched/branched nucleation altered the morphology and dynamics of Nck-induced actin comets. Inhibition of linear, formin-based nucleation with the small-molecule inhibitor SMIFH2 or overexpression of the formin FH1 domain resulted in formation of predominantly circular-shaped actin structures with low mobility (actin blobs). These results indicate that formin-based linear actin polymerization is critical for the formation and maintenance of Nck-dependent actin comet tails. Consistent with this, aggregation of an exclusively branched nucleation-promoting factor (the VCA domain of N-WASP), with density and turnover similar to those of N-WASP in Nck comets, did not reconstitute dynamic, elongated actin comets. Furthermore, enhancement of branched Arp2/3-mediated nucleation by N-WASP overexpression caused loss of the typical actin comet tail shape induced by Nck aggregation. Thus the ratio of linear to dendritic nucleation activity may serve to distinguish the properties of actin structures induced by various viral and bacterial pathogens. PMID:26609071

  6. Integration of linear and dendritic actin nucleation in Nck-induced actin comets.

    PubMed

    Borinskaya, Sofya; Velle, Katrina B; Campellone, Kenneth G; Talman, Arthur; Alvarez, Diego; Agaisse, Hervé; Wu, Yi I; Loew, Leslie M; Mayer, Bruce J

    2016-01-15

    The Nck adaptor protein recruits cytosolic effectors such as N-WASP that induce localized actin polymerization. Experimental aggregation of Nck SH3 domains at the membrane induces actin comet tails--dynamic, elongated filamentous actin structures similar to those that drive the movement of microbial pathogens such as vaccinia virus. Here we show that experimental manipulation of the balance between unbranched/branched nucleation altered the morphology and dynamics of Nck-induced actin comets. Inhibition of linear, formin-based nucleation with the small-molecule inhibitor SMIFH2 or overexpression of the formin FH1 domain resulted in formation of predominantly circular-shaped actin structures with low mobility (actin blobs). These results indicate that formin-based linear actin polymerization is critical for the formation and maintenance of Nck-dependent actin comet tails. Consistent with this, aggregation of an exclusively branched nucleation-promoting factor (the VCA domain of N-WASP), with density and turnover similar to those of N-WASP in Nck comets, did not reconstitute dynamic, elongated actin comets. Furthermore, enhancement of branched Arp2/3-mediated nucleation by N-WASP overexpression caused loss of the typical actin comet tail shape induced by Nck aggregation. Thus the ratio of linear to dendritic nucleation activity may serve to distinguish the properties of actin structures induced by various viral and bacterial pathogens. PMID:26609071

  7. A genome-wide analysis reveals that the Drosophila transcription factor Lola promotes axon growth in part by suppressing expression of the actin nucleation factor Spire

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background The phylogenetically conserved transcription factor Lola is essential for many aspects of axon growth and guidance, synapse formation and neural circuit development in Drosophila. To date it has been difficult, however, to obtain an overall view of Lola functions and mechanisms. Results We use expression microarrays to identify the lola-dependent transcriptome in the Drosophila embryo. We find that lola regulates the expression of a large selection of genes that are known to affect each of several lola-dependent developmental processes. Among other loci, we find lola to be a negative regulator of spire, an actin nucleation factor that has been studied for its essential role in oogenesis. We show that spire is expressed in the nervous system and is required for a known lola-dependent axon guidance decision, growth of ISNb motor axons. We further show that reducing spire gene dosage suppresses this aspect of the lola phenotype, verifying that derepression of spire is an important contributor to the axon stalling phenotype of embryonic motor axons in lola mutants. Conclusions These data shed new light on the molecular mechanisms of many lola-dependent processes, and also identify several developmental processes not previously linked to lola that are apt to be regulated by this transcription factor. These data further demonstrate that excessive expression of the actin nucleation factor Spire is as deleterious for axon growth in vivo as is the loss of Spire, thus highlighting the need for a balance in the elementary steps of actin dynamics to achieve effective neuronal morphogenesis. PMID:22129300

  8. FMNL3 FH2-actin structure gives insight into formin-mediated actin nucleation and elongation

    SciTech Connect

    Thompson, Morgan E; Heimsath, Ernest G; Gauvin, Timothy J; Higgs, Henry N; Kull, F Jon

    2012-12-09

    Formins are actin-assembly factors that act in a variety of actin-based processes. The conserved formin homology 2 (FH2) domain promotes filament nucleation and influences elongation through interaction with the barbed end. FMNL3 is a formin that induces assembly of filopodia but whose FH2 domain is a poor nucleator. The 3.4-Å structure of a mouse FMNL3 FH2 dimer in complex with tetramethylrhodamine-actin uncovers details of formin-regulated actin elongation. We observe distinct FH2 actin-binding regions; interactions in the knob and coiled-coil subdomains are necessary for actin binding, whereas those in the lasso-post interface are important for the stepping mechanism. Biochemical and cellular experiments test the importance of individual residues for function. This structure provides details for FH2-mediated filament elongation by processive capping and supports a model in which C-terminal non-FH2 residues of FMNL3 are required to stabilize the filament nucleus.

  9. Actin nucleation at the centrosome controls lymphocyte polarity

    PubMed Central

    Obino, Dorian; Farina, Francesca; Malbec, Odile; Sáez, Pablo J.; Maurin, Mathieu; Gaillard, Jérémie; Dingli, Florent; Loew, Damarys; Gautreau, Alexis; Yuseff, Maria-Isabel; Blanchoin, Laurent; Théry, Manuel; Lennon-Duménil, Ana-Maria

    2016-01-01

    Cell polarity is required for the functional specialization of many cell types including lymphocytes. A hallmark of cell polarity is the reorientation of the centrosome that allows repositioning of organelles and vesicles in an asymmetric fashion. The mechanisms underlying centrosome polarization are not fully understood. Here we found that in resting lymphocytes, centrosome-associated Arp2/3 locally nucleates F-actin, which is needed for centrosome tethering to the nucleus via the LINC complex. Upon lymphocyte activation, Arp2/3 is partially depleted from the centrosome as a result of its recruitment to the immune synapse. This leads to a reduction in F-actin nucleation at the centrosome and thereby allows its detachment from the nucleus and polarization to the synapse. Therefore, F-actin nucleation at the centrosome—regulated by the availability of the Arp2/3 complex—determines its capacity to polarize in response to external stimuli. PMID:26987298

  10. Rab1 recruits WHAMM during membrane remodeling but limits actin nucleation

    PubMed Central

    Russo, Ashley J.; Mathiowetz, Alyssa J.; Hong, Steven; Welch, Matthew D.; Campellone, Kenneth G.

    2016-01-01

    Small G-proteins are key regulatory molecules that activate the actin nucleation machinery to drive cytoskeletal rearrangements during plasma membrane remodeling. However, the ability of small G-proteins to interact with nucleation factors on internal membranes to control trafficking processes has not been well characterized. Here we investigated roles for members of the Rho, Arf, and Rab G-protein families in regulating WASP homologue associated with actin, membranes, and microtubules (WHAMM), an activator of Arp2/3 complex–mediated actin nucleation. We found that Rab1 stimulated the formation and elongation of WHAMM-associated membrane tubules in cells. Active Rab1 recruited WHAMM to dynamic tubulovesicular structures in fibroblasts, and an active prenylated version of Rab1 bound directly to an N-terminal domain of WHAMM in vitro. In contrast to other G-protein–nucleation factor interactions, Rab1 binding inhibited WHAMM-mediated actin assembly. This ability of Rab1 to regulate WHAMM and the Arp2/3 complex represents a distinct strategy for membrane remodeling in which a Rab G-protein recruits the actin nucleation machinery but dampens its activity. PMID:26823012

  11. 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

  12. Structure of the FMNL3 FH2/actin complex provides insight into formin-mediated actin nucleation and elongation

    PubMed Central

    Thompson, Morgan E.; Heimsath, Ernest G.; Gauvin, Timothy J.; Higgs, Henry N.; Kull, F. Jon

    2012-01-01

    Summary Formins are actin assembly factors that act in a variety of actin-based processes. The conserved formin homology 2 (FH2) domain promotes filament nucleation and influences elongation via interaction with the barbed end. FMNL3 is a formin that induces assembly of filopodia but whose FH2 domain is a poor nucleator. The 3.4 Å structure of an FMNL3 FH2 dimer in complex with tetramethylrhodamine-actin uncovers details of formin-regulated actin elongation. We observe distinct FH2-actin binding regions; interactions in the knob and coiled-coil subdomains are necessary for actin binding while those in the lasso/post interface are important for the stepping mechanism. Biochemical and cellular experiments test the importance of individual residues for function. This structure provides details for FH2 mediated filament elongation via processive capping and supports a model in which C-terminal non-FH2 residues of FMNL3 are required to stabilize the filament nucleus. PMID:23222643

  13. Mechanism of actin filament nucleation by the bacterial effector VopL

    SciTech Connect

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

    2012-05-02

    Vibrio parahaemolyticus protein L (VopL) is an actin nucleation factor that induces stress fibers when injected into eukaryotic host cells. VopL contains three N-terminal Wiskott-Aldrich homology 2 (WH2) motifs and a unique VopL C-terminal domain (VCD). We describe crystallographic and biochemical analyses of filament nucleation by VopL. The WH2 element of VopL does not nucleate on its own and requires the VCD for activity. The VCD forms a U-shaped dimer in the crystal, stabilized by a terminal coiled coil. Dimerization of the WH2 motifs contributes strongly to nucleation activity, as do contacts of the VCD to actin. Our data lead to a model in which VopL stabilizes primarily lateral (short-pitch) contacts between actin monomers to create the base of a two-stranded filament. Stabilization of lateral contacts may be a common feature of actin filament nucleation by WH2-based factors.

  14. How capping protein enhances actin filament growth and nucleation on biomimetic beads

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Ruizhe; Carlsson, Anders E.

    2015-12-01

    Capping protein (CP), which caps the growing ends of actin filaments, accelerates actin-based motility. Recent experiments on biomimetic beads have shown that CP also enhances the rate of actin filament nucleation. Proposed explanations for these phenomena include (i) the actin funneling hypothesis (AFH), in which the presence of CP increases the free-actin concentration, and (ii) the monomer gating model, in which CP binding to actin filament barbed ends makes more monomers available for filament nucleation. To establish how CP increases the rates of filament elongation and nucleation on biomimetic beads, we perform a quantitative modeling analysis of actin polymerization, using rate equations that include actin filament nucleation, polymerization and capping, as modified by monomer depletion near the surface of the bead. With one adjustable parameter, our simulation results match previously measured time courses of polymerized actin and filament number. The results support a version of the AFH where CP increases the local actin monomer concentration at the bead surface, but leaves the global free-actin concentration nearly constant. Because the rate of filament nucleation increases with the monomer concentration, the increased local monomer concentration enhances actin filament nucleation. We derive a closed-form formula for the characteristic CP concentration where the local free-actin concentration reaches half the bulk value, and find it to be comparable to the global Arp2/3 complex concentration. We also propose an experimental protocol for distinguishing branching nucleation of filaments from spontaneous nucleation.

  15. Elucidating Key Motifs Required for Arp2/3-Dependent and Independent Actin Nucleation by Las17/WASP

    PubMed Central

    Urbanek, Agnieszka N.; Smaczynska-de Rooij, Iwona I.

    2016-01-01

    Actin nucleation is the key rate limiting step in the process of actin polymerization, and tight regulation of this process is critical to ensure actin filaments form only at specific times and at defined regions of the cell. Arp2/3 is a well-characterised protein complex that can promote nucleation of new filaments, though its activity requires additional nucleation promotion factors (NPFs). The best recognized of these factors are the WASP family of proteins that contain binding motifs for both monomeric actin and for Arp2/3. Previously we demonstrated that the yeast WASP homologue, Las17, in addition to activating Arp2/3 can also nucleate actin filaments de novo, independently of Arp2/3. This activity is dependent on its polyproline rich region. Through biochemical and in vivo analysis we have now identified key motifs within the polyproline region that are required for nucleation and elongation of actin filaments, and have addressed the role of the WH2 domain in the context of actin nucleation without Arp2/3. We have also demonstrated that full length Las17 is able to bind liposomes giving rise to the possibility of direct linkage of nascent actin filaments to specific membrane sites to which Las17 has been recruited. Overall, we propose that Las17 functions as the key initiator of de novo actin filament formation at endocytic sites by nucleating, elongating and tethering nascent filaments which then serve as a platform for Arp2/3 recruitment and function. PMID:27637067

  16. Elucidating Key Motifs Required for Arp2/3-Dependent and Independent Actin Nucleation by Las17/WASP.

    PubMed

    Allwood, Ellen G; Tyler, Joe J; Urbanek, Agnieszka N; Smaczynska-de Rooij, Iwona I; Ayscough, Kathryn R

    2016-01-01

    Actin nucleation is the key rate limiting step in the process of actin polymerization, and tight regulation of this process is critical to ensure actin filaments form only at specific times and at defined regions of the cell. Arp2/3 is a well-characterised protein complex that can promote nucleation of new filaments, though its activity requires additional nucleation promotion factors (NPFs). The best recognized of these factors are the WASP family of proteins that contain binding motifs for both monomeric actin and for Arp2/3. Previously we demonstrated that the yeast WASP homologue, Las17, in addition to activating Arp2/3 can also nucleate actin filaments de novo, independently of Arp2/3. This activity is dependent on its polyproline rich region. Through biochemical and in vivo analysis we have now identified key motifs within the polyproline region that are required for nucleation and elongation of actin filaments, and have addressed the role of the WH2 domain in the context of actin nucleation without Arp2/3. We have also demonstrated that full length Las17 is able to bind liposomes giving rise to the possibility of direct linkage of nascent actin filaments to specific membrane sites to which Las17 has been recruited. Overall, we propose that Las17 functions as the key initiator of de novo actin filament formation at endocytic sites by nucleating, elongating and tethering nascent filaments which then serve as a platform for Arp2/3 recruitment and function. PMID:27637067

  17. Molecular Characterization of Toxoplasma gondii Formin 3, an Actin Nucleator Dispensable for Tachyzoite Growth and Motility

    PubMed Central

    Daher, Wassim; Klages, Natacha; Carlier, Marie-France

    2012-01-01

    Toxoplasma gondii belongs to the phylum Apicomplexa, a group of obligate intracellular parasites that rely on gliding motility to enter host cells. Drugs interfering with the actin cytoskeleton block parasite motility, host cell invasion, and egress from infected cells. Myosin A, profilin, formin 1, formin 2, and actin-depolymerizing factor have all been implicated in parasite motility, yet little is known regarding the importance of actin polymerization and other myosins for the remaining steps of the parasite lytic cycle. Here we establish that T. gondii formin 3 (TgFRM3), a newly described formin homology 2 domain (FH2)-containing protein, binds to Toxoplasma actin and nucleates rabbit actin assembly in vitro. TgFRM3 expressed as a transgene exhibits a patchy localization at several distinct structures within the parasite. Disruption of the TgFRM3 gene by double homologous recombination in a ku80-ko strain reveals no vital function for tachyzoite propagation in vitro, which is consistent with its weak level of expression in this life stage. Conditional stabilization of truncated forms of TgFRM3 suggests that different regions of the molecule contribute to distinct localizations. Moreover, expression of TgFRM3 lacking the C-terminal domain severely affects parasite growth and replication. This work provides a first insight into how this specialized formin, restricted to the group of coccidia, completes its actin-nucleating activity. PMID:22210829

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

    PubMed

    Newsome, Timothy P; Marzook, N Bishara

    2015-10-01

    Actin nucleation drives a diversity of critical cellular processes and the motility of a select group of viral pathogens. Vaccinia virus and baculovirus, Autographa californica multiple nucleopolyhedrovirus, recruit and activate the cellular actin nucleator, the Arp2/3 complex, at the surface of virus particles thereby instigating highly localized actin nucleation. The extension of these filaments provides a mechanical force that bestows the ability to navigate the intracellular environment and promote their infectious cycles. This review outlines the viral and cellular proteins that initiate and regulate the signalling networks leading to viral modification of the actin cytoskeleton and summarizes recent insights into the role of actin-based virus transport. PMID:26459972

  19. Formin 1 Regulates Ectoplasmic Specialization in the Rat Testis Through Its Actin Nucleation and Bundling Activity.

    PubMed

    Li, Nan; Mruk, Dolores D; Wong, Chris K C; Han, Daishu; Lee, Will M; Cheng, C Yan

    2015-08-01

    During spermatogenesis, developing spermatids and preleptotene spermatocytes are transported across the adluminal compartment and the blood-testis barrier (BTB), respectively, so that spermatids line up near the luminal edge to prepare for spermiation, whereas preleptotene spermatocytes enter the adluminal compartment to differentiate into late spermatocytes to prepare for meiosis I/II. These cellular events involve actin microfilament reorganization at the testis-specific, actin-rich Sertoli-spermatid and Sertoli-Sertoli cell junction called apical and basal ectoplasmic specialization (ES). Formin 1, an actin nucleation protein known to promote actin microfilament elongation and bundling, was expressed at the apical ES but limited to stage VII of the epithelial cycle, whereas its expression at the basal ES/BTB stretched from stage III to stage VI, diminished in stage VII, and was undetectable in stage VIII tubules. Using an in vitro model of studying Sertoli cell BTB function by RNA interference and biochemical assays to monitor actin bundling and polymerization activity, a knockdown of formin 1 in Sertoli cells by approximately 70% impeded the tight junction-permeability function. This disruptive effect on the tight junction barrier was mediated by a loss of actin microfilament bundling and actin polymerization capability mediated by changes in the localization of branched actin-inducing protein Arp3 (actin-related protein 3), and actin bundling proteins Eps8 (epidermal growth factor receptor pathway substrate 8) and palladin, thereby disrupting cell adhesion. Formin 1 knockdown in vivo was found to impede spermatid adhesion, transport, and polarity, causing defects in spermiation in which elongated spermatids remained embedded into the epithelium in stage IX tubules, mediated by changes in the spatiotemporal expression of Arp3, Eps8, and palladin. In summary, formin 1 is a regulator of ES dynamics.

  20. Dendrite architecture organized by transcriptional control of the F-actin nucleator Spire.

    PubMed

    Ferreira, Tiago; Ou, Yimiao; Li, Sally; Giniger, Edward; van Meyel, Donald J

    2014-02-01

    The architectures of dendritic trees are crucial for the wiring and function of neuronal circuits because they determine coverage of receptive territories, as well as the nature and strength of sensory or synaptic inputs. Here, we describe a cell-intrinsic pathway sculpting dendritic arborization (da) neurons in Drosophila that requires Longitudinals Lacking (Lola), a BTB/POZ transcription factor, and its control of the F-actin cytoskeleton through Spire (Spir), an actin nucleation protein. Loss of Lola from da neurons reduced the overall length of dendritic arbors, increased the expression of Spir, and produced inappropriate F-actin-rich dendrites at positions too near the cell soma. Selective removal of Lola from only class IV da neurons decreased the evasive responses of larvae to nociception. The increased Spir expression contributed to the abnormal F-actin-rich dendrites and the decreased nocifensive responses because both were suppressed by reduced dose of Spir. Thus, an important role of Lola is to limit expression of Spir to appropriate levels within da neurons. We found Spir to be expressed in dendritic arbors and to be important for their development. Removal of Spir from class IV da neurons reduced F-actin levels and total branch number, shifted the position of greatest branch density away from the cell soma, and compromised nocifensive behavior. We conclude that the Lola-Spir pathway is crucial for the spatial arrangement of branches within dendritic trees and for neural circuit function because it provides balanced control of the F-actin cytoskeleton.

  1. Profilin-Dependent Nucleation and Assembly of Actin Filaments Controls Cell Elongation in Arabidopsis1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Lingyan; Blanchoin, Laurent; Staiger, Christopher J.

    2016-01-01

    Actin filaments in plant cells are incredibly dynamic; they undergo incessant remodeling and assembly or disassembly within seconds. These dynamic events are choreographed by a plethora of actin-binding proteins, but the exact mechanisms are poorly understood. Here, we dissect the contribution of Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) PROFILIN1 (PRF1), a conserved actin monomer-binding protein, to actin organization and single filament dynamics during axial cell expansion of living epidermal cells. We found that reduced PRF1 levels enhanced cell and organ growth. Surprisingly, we observed that the overall frequency of nucleation events in prf1 mutants was dramatically decreased and that a subpopulation of actin filaments that assemble at high rates was reduced. To test whether profilin cooperates with plant formin proteins to execute actin nucleation and rapid filament elongation in cells, we used a pharmacological approach. Here, we used Small Molecule Inhibitor of Formin FH2 (SMIFH2), after validating its mode of action on a plant formin in vitro, and observed a reduced nucleation frequency of actin filaments in live cells. Treatment of wild-type epidermal cells with SMIFH2 mimicked the phenotype of prf1 mutants, and the nucleation frequency in prf1-2 mutant was completely insensitive to these treatments. Our data provide compelling evidence that PRF1 coordinates the stochastic dynamic properties of actin filaments by modulating formin-mediated actin nucleation and assembly during plant cell expansion. PMID:26574597

  2. Ligand-induced activation of a formin–NPF pair leads to collaborative actin nucleation

    PubMed Central

    Graziano, Brian R.; Jonasson, Erin M.; Pullen, Jessica G.; Gould, Christopher J.

    2013-01-01

    Formins associate with other nucleators and nucleation-promoting factors (NPFs) to stimulate collaborative actin assembly, but the mechanisms regulating these interactions have been unclear. Yeast Bud6 has an established role as an NPF for the formin Bni1, but whether it also directly regulates the formin Bnr1 has remained enigmatic. In this paper, we analyzed NPF-impaired alleles of bud6 in a bni1Δ background and found that Bud6 stimulated Bnr1 activity in vivo. Furthermore, Bud6 bound directly to Bnr1, but its NPF effects were masked by a short regulatory sequence, suggesting that additional factors may be required for activation. We isolated a novel in vivo binding partner of Bud6, Yor304c-a/Bil1, which colocalized with Bud6 and functioned in the Bnr1 pathway for actin assembly. Purified Bil1 bound to the regulatory sequence in Bud6 and triggered NPF effects on Bnr1. These observations define a new mode of formin regulation, which has important implications for understanding NPF-nucleator pairs in diverse systems. PMID:23671312

  3. Genome-Wide siRNA Screen Identifies Complementary Signaling Pathways Involved in Listeria Infection and Reveals Different Actin Nucleation Mechanisms during Listeria Cell Invasion and Actin Comet Tail Formation

    PubMed Central

    Kühbacher, Andreas; Emmenlauer, Mario; Rämo, Pauli; Kafai, Natasha; Dehio, Christoph

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Listeria monocytogenes enters nonphagocytic cells by a receptor-mediated mechanism that is dependent on a clathrin-based molecular machinery and actin rearrangements. Bacterial intra- and intercellular movements are also actin dependent and rely on the actin nucleating Arp2/3 complex, which is activated by host-derived nucleation-promoting factors downstream of the cell receptor Met during entry and by the bacterial nucleation-promoting factor ActA during comet tail formation. By genome-wide small interfering RNA (siRNA) screening for host factors involved in bacterial infection, we identified diverse cellular signaling networks and protein complexes that support or limit these processes. In addition, we could precise previously described molecular pathways involved in Listeria invasion. In particular our results show that the requirements for actin nucleators during Listeria entry and actin comet tail formation are different. Knockdown of several actin nucleators, including SPIRE2, reduced bacterial invasion while not affecting the generation of comet tails. Most interestingly, we observed that in contrast to our expectations, not all of the seven subunits of the Arp2/3 complex are required for Listeria entry into cells or actin tail formation and that the subunit requirements for each of these processes differ, highlighting a previously unsuspected versatility in Arp2/3 complex composition and function. PMID:25991686

  4. Myosin and Tropomyosin Stabilize the Conformation of Formin-nucleated Actin Filaments*

    PubMed Central

    Ujfalusi, Zoltán; Kovács, Mihály; Nagy, Nikolett T.; Barkó, Szilvia; Hild, Gábor; Lukács, András; Nyitrai, Miklós; Bugyi, Beáta

    2012-01-01

    The conformational elasticity of the actin cytoskeleton is essential for its versatile biological functions. Increasing evidence supports that the interplay between the structural and functional properties of actin filaments is finely regulated by actin-binding proteins; however, the underlying mechanisms and biological consequences are not completely understood. Previous studies showed that the binding of formins to the barbed end induces conformational transitions in actin filaments by making them more flexible through long range allosteric interactions. These conformational changes are accompanied by altered functional properties of the filaments. To get insight into the conformational regulation of formin-nucleated actin structures, in the present work we investigated in detail how binding partners of formin-generated actin structures, myosin and tropomyosin, affect the conformation of the formin-nucleated actin filaments using fluorescence spectroscopic approaches. Time-dependent fluorescence anisotropy and temperature-dependent Förster-type resonance energy transfer measurements revealed that heavy meromyosin, similarly to tropomyosin, restores the formin-induced effects and stabilizes the conformation of actin filaments. The stabilizing effect of heavy meromyosin is cooperative. The kinetic analysis revealed that despite the qualitatively similar effects of heavy meromyosin and tropomyosin on the conformational dynamics of actin filaments the mechanisms of the conformational transition are different for the two proteins. Heavy meromyosin stabilizes the formin-nucleated actin filaments in an apparently single step reaction upon binding, whereas the stabilization by tropomyosin occurs after complex formation. These observations support the idea that actin-binding proteins are key elements of the molecular mechanisms that regulate the conformational and functional diversity of actin filaments in living cells. PMID:22753415

  5. Coordinated recruitment of Spir actin nucleators and myosin V motors to Rab11 vesicle membranes

    PubMed Central

    Pylypenko, Olena; Welz, Tobias; Tittel, Janine; Kollmar, Martin; Chardon, Florian; Malherbe, Gilles; Weiss, Sabine; Michel, Carina Ida Luise; Samol-Wolf, Annette; Grasskamp, Andreas Till; Hume, Alistair; Goud, Bruno; Baron, Bruno; England, Patrick; Titus, Margaret A; Schwille, Petra; Weidemann, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    There is growing evidence for a coupling of actin assembly and myosin motor activity in cells. However, mechanisms for recruitment of actin nucleators and motors on specific membrane compartments remain unclear. Here we report how Spir actin nucleators and myosin V motors coordinate their specific membrane recruitment. The myosin V globular tail domain (MyoV-GTD) interacts directly with an evolutionarily conserved Spir sequence motif. We determined crystal structures of MyoVa-GTD bound either to the Spir-2 motif or to Rab11 and show that a Spir-2:MyoVa:Rab11 complex can form. The ternary complex architecture explains how Rab11 vesicles support coordinated F-actin nucleation and myosin force generation for vesicle transport and tethering. New insights are also provided into how myosin activation can be coupled with the generation of actin tracks. Since MyoV binds several Rab GTPases, synchronized nucleator and motor targeting could provide a common mechanism to control force generation and motility in different cellular processes. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.17523.001 PMID:27623148

  6. Coordinated recruitment of Spir actin nucleators and myosin V motors to Rab11 vesicle membranes.

    PubMed

    Pylypenko, Olena; Welz, Tobias; Tittel, Janine; Kollmar, Martin; Chardon, Florian; Malherbe, Gilles; Weiss, Sabine; Michel, Carina Ida Luise; Samol-Wolf, Annette; Grasskamp, Andreas Till; Hume, Alistair; Goud, Bruno; Baron, Bruno; England, Patrick; Titus, Margaret A; Schwille, Petra; Weidemann, Thomas; Houdusse, Anne; Kerkhoff, Eugen

    2016-01-01

    There is growing evidence for a coupling of actin assembly and myosin motor activity in cells. However, mechanisms for recruitment of actin nucleators and motors on specific membrane compartments remain unclear. Here we report how Spir actin nucleators and myosin V motors coordinate their specific membrane recruitment. The myosin V globular tail domain (MyoV-GTD) interacts directly with an evolutionarily conserved Spir sequence motif. We determined crystal structures of MyoVa-GTD bound either to the Spir-2 motif or to Rab11 and show that a Spir-2:MyoVa:Rab11 complex can form. The ternary complex architecture explains how Rab11 vesicles support coordinated F-actin nucleation and myosin force generation for vesicle transport and tethering. New insights are also provided into how myosin activation can be coupled with the generation of actin tracks. Since MyoV binds several Rab GTPases, synchronized nucleator and motor targeting could provide a common mechanism to control force generation and motility in different cellular processes. PMID:27623148

  7. Identification of an ATP-controlled allosteric switch that controls actin filament nucleation by Arp2/3 complex

    PubMed Central

    Rodnick-Smith, Max; Liu, Su-Ling; Balzer, Connor J.; Luan, Qing; Nolen, Brad J.

    2016-01-01

    Nucleation of branched actin filaments by Arp2/3 complex is tightly regulated to control actin assembly in cells. Arp2/3 complex activation involves conformational changes brought about by ATP, Nucleation Promoting Factor (NPF) proteins, actin filaments and NPF-recruited actin monomers. To understand how these factors promote activation, we must first understand how the complex is held inactive in their absence. Here we demonstrate that the Arp3 C-terminal tail is a structural switch that prevents Arp2/3 complex from adopting an active conformation. The interaction between the tail and a hydrophobic groove in Arp3 blocks movement of Arp2 and Arp3 into an activated filament-like (short pitch) conformation. Our data indicate ATP binding destabilizes this interaction via an allosteric link between the Arp3 nucleotide cleft and the hydrophobic groove, thereby promoting the short-pitch conformation. Our results help explain how Arp2/3 complex is locked in an inactive state without activators and how autoinhibition is relieved. PMID:27417392

  8. Identification of an ATP-controlled allosteric switch that controls actin filament nucleation by Arp2/3 complex.

    PubMed

    Rodnick-Smith, Max; Liu, Su-Ling; Balzer, Connor J; Luan, Qing; Nolen, Brad J

    2016-01-01

    Nucleation of branched actin filaments by Arp2/3 complex is tightly regulated to control actin assembly in cells. Arp2/3 complex activation involves conformational changes brought about by ATP, Nucleation Promoting Factor (NPF) proteins, actin filaments and NPF-recruited actin monomers. To understand how these factors promote activation, we must first understand how the complex is held inactive in their absence. Here we demonstrate that the Arp3 C-terminal tail is a structural switch that prevents Arp2/3 complex from adopting an active conformation. The interaction between the tail and a hydrophobic groove in Arp3 blocks movement of Arp2 and Arp3 into an activated filament-like (short pitch) conformation. Our data indicate ATP binding destabilizes this interaction via an allosteric link between the Arp3 nucleotide cleft and the hydrophobic groove, thereby promoting the short-pitch conformation. Our results help explain how Arp2/3 complex is locked in an inactive state without activators and how autoinhibition is relieved. PMID:27417392

  9. A formin-nucleated actin aster concentrates cell wall hydrolases for cell fusion in fission yeast

    PubMed Central

    Dudin, Omaya; Bendezú, Felipe O.; Groux, Raphael; Laroche, Thierry; Seitz, Arne

    2015-01-01

    Cell–cell fusion is essential for fertilization. For fusion of walled cells, the cell wall must be degraded at a precise location but maintained in surrounding regions to protect against lysis. In fission yeast cells, the formin Fus1, which nucleates linear actin filaments, is essential for this process. In this paper, we show that this formin organizes a specific actin structure—the actin fusion focus. Structured illumination microscopy and live-cell imaging of Fus1, actin, and type V myosins revealed an aster of actin filaments whose barbed ends are focalized near the plasma membrane. Focalization requires Fus1 and type V myosins and happens asynchronously always in the M cell first. Type V myosins are essential for fusion and concentrate cell wall hydrolases, but not cell wall synthases, at the fusion focus. Thus, the fusion focus focalizes cell wall dissolution within a broader cell wall synthesis zone to shift from cell growth to cell fusion. PMID:25825517

  10. A mitochondria-anchored isoform of the actin-nucleating spire protein regulates mitochondrial division.

    PubMed

    Manor, Uri; Bartholomew, Sadie; Golani, Gonen; Christenson, Eric; Kozlov, Michael; Higgs, Henry; Spudich, James; Lippincott-Schwartz, Jennifer

    2015-08-25

    Mitochondrial division, essential for survival in mammals, is enhanced by an inter-organellar process involving ER tubules encircling and constricting mitochondria. The force for constriction is thought to involve actin polymerization by the ER-anchored isoform of the formin protein inverted formin 2 (INF2). Unknown is the mechanism triggering INF2-mediated actin polymerization at ER-mitochondria intersections. We show that a novel isoform of the formin-binding, actin-nucleating protein Spire, Spire1C, localizes to mitochondria and directly links mitochondria to the actin cytoskeleton and the ER. Spire1C binds INF2 and promotes actin assembly on mitochondrial surfaces. Disrupting either Spire1C actin- or formin-binding activities reduces mitochondrial constriction and division. We propose Spire1C cooperates with INF2 to regulate actin assembly at ER-mitochondrial contacts. Simulations support this model's feasibility and demonstrate polymerizing actin filaments can induce mitochondrial constriction. Thus, Spire1C is optimally positioned to serve as a molecular hub that links mitochondria to actin and the ER for regulation of mitochondrial division.

  11. A mitochondria-anchored isoform of the actin-nucleating spire protein regulates mitochondrial division

    PubMed Central

    Manor, Uri; Bartholomew, Sadie; Golani, Gonen; Christenson, Eric; Kozlov, Michael; Higgs, Henry; Spudich, James; Lippincott-Schwartz, Jennifer

    2015-01-01

    Mitochondrial division, essential for survival in mammals, is enhanced by an inter-organellar process involving ER tubules encircling and constricting mitochondria. The force for constriction is thought to involve actin polymerization by the ER-anchored isoform of the formin protein inverted formin 2 (INF2). Unknown is the mechanism triggering INF2-mediated actin polymerization at ER-mitochondria intersections. We show that a novel isoform of the formin-binding, actin-nucleating protein Spire, Spire1C, localizes to mitochondria and directly links mitochondria to the actin cytoskeleton and the ER. Spire1C binds INF2 and promotes actin assembly on mitochondrial surfaces. Disrupting either Spire1C actin- or formin-binding activities reduces mitochondrial constriction and division. We propose Spire1C cooperates with INF2 to regulate actin assembly at ER-mitochondrial contacts. Simulations support this model's feasibility and demonstrate polymerizing actin filaments can induce mitochondrial constriction. Thus, Spire1C is optimally positioned to serve as a molecular hub that links mitochondria to actin and the ER for regulation of mitochondrial division. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.08828.001 PMID:26305500

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-10-31

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

  13. Bundling of actin filaments by elongation factor 1 alpha inhibits polymerization at filament ends

    PubMed Central

    1996-01-01

    Elongation factor 1 alpha (EF1 alpha) is an abundant protein that binds aminoacyl-tRNA and ribosomes in a GTP-dependent manner. EF1 alpha also interacts with the cytoskeleton by binding and bundling actin filaments and microtubules. In this report, the effect of purified EF1 alpha on actin polymerization and depolymerization is examined. At molar ratios present in the cytosol, EF1 alpha significantly blocks both polymerization and depolymerization of actin filaments and increases the final extent of actin polymer, while at high molar ratios to actin, EF1 alpha nucleates actin polymerization. Although EF1 alpha binds actin monomer, this monomer-binding activity does not explain the effects of EF1 alpha on actin polymerization at physiological molar ratios. The mechanism for the inhibition of polymerization is related to the actin-bundling activity of EF1 alpha. Both ends of the actin filament are inhibited for polymerization and both bundling and the inhibition of actin polymerization are affected by pH within the same physiological range; at high pH both bundling and the inhibition of actin polymerization are reduced. Additionally, it is seen that the binding of aminoacyl-tRNA to EF1 alpha releases EF1 alpha's inhibiting effect on actin polymerization. These data demonstrate that EF1 alpha can alter the assembly of F-actin, a filamentous scaffold on which non- membrane-associated protein translation may be occurring in vivo. PMID:8947553

  14. Early nucleation events in the polymerization of actin, probed by time-resolved small-angle x-ray scattering

    PubMed Central

    Oda, Toshiro; Aihara, Tomoki; Wakabayashi, Katsuzo

    2016-01-01

    Nucleators generating new F-actin filaments play important roles in cell activities. Detailed information concerning the events involved in nucleation of actin alone in vitro is fundamental to understanding these processes, but such information has been hard to come by. We addressed the early process of salt-induced polymerization of actin using the time-resolved synchrotron small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS). Actin molecules in low salt solution maintain a monomeric state by an electrostatic repulsive force between molecules. On mixing with salts, the repulsive force was rapidly screened, causing an immediate formation of many of non-polymerizable dimers. SAXS kinetic analysis revealed that tetramerization gives the highest energetic barrier to further polymerization, and the major nucleation is the formation of helical tetramers. Filaments start to grow rapidly with the formation of pentamers. These findings suggest an acceleration mechanism of actin assembly by a variety of nucleators in cells. PMID:27775032

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

    PubMed

    Horsington, Jacquelyn; Lynn, Helena; Turnbull, Lynne; Cheng, Delfine; Braet, Filip; Diefenbach, Russell J; Whitchurch, Cynthia B; Karupiah, Guna; Newsome, Timothy P

    2013-03-01

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

  16. Capping Protein Increases the Rate of Actin-based Motility by Promoting Filament Nucleation by the Arp2/3 Complex

    PubMed Central

    Akin, Orkun; Mullins, R. Dyche

    2008-01-01

    Summary Capping protein is an integral component of Arp2/3-nucleated actin networks that drive amoeboid motility. Increasing the concentration of capping protein, which caps barbed ends of actin filaments and prevents elongation, increases the rate of actin-based motility in vivo and in vitro. We studied the synergy between capping protein and Arp2/3 using an in vitro actin-based motility system reconstituted from purified proteins. We find that capping protein increases the rate of motility by promoting more frequent filament nucleation by the Arp2/3 complex, and not by increasing the rate of filament elongation as previously suggested. One consequence of this coupling between capping and nucleation is that, while the rate of motility depends strongly on the concentration of capping protein and Arp2/3, the net rate of actin assembly is insensitive to changes in either factor. By reorganizing their architecture, dendritic actin networks harness the same assembly kinetics to drive different rates of motility. PMID:18510928

  17. Direct interaction between two actin nucleators is required in Drosophila oogenesis.

    PubMed

    Quinlan, Margot E

    2013-11-01

    Controlled actin assembly is crucial to a wide variety of cellular processes, including polarity establishment during early development. The recently discovered actin mesh, a structure that traverses the Drosophila oocyte during mid-oogenesis, is essential for proper establishment of the major body axes. Genetic experiments indicate that at least two proteins, Spire (Spir) and Cappuccino (Capu), are required to build this mesh. The spire and cappuccino genetic loci were first identified as maternal effect genes in Drosophila. Mutation in either locus results in the same phenotypes, including absence of the mesh, linking them functionally. Both proteins nucleate actin filaments. Spir and Capu also interact directly with each other in vitro, suggesting a novel synergistic mode of regulating actin. In order to understand how and why proteins with similar biochemical activity would be required in the same biological pathway, genetic experiments were designed to test whether a direct interaction between Spir and Capu is required during oogenesis. Indeed, data in this study indicate that Spir and Capu must interact directly with one another and then separate to function properly. Furthermore, these actin regulators are controlled by a combination of mechanisms, including interaction with one another, functional inhibition and regulation of their protein levels. Finally, this work demonstrates for the first time in a multicellular organism that the ability of a formin to assemble actin filaments is required for a specific structure.

  18. Factors Affecting Ice Nucleation in Plant Tissues

    PubMed Central

    Ashworth, Edward N.; Davis, Glen A.; Anderson, Jeffrey A.

    1985-01-01

    Factors affecting the ice nucleation temperature of plants and plant tissues were examined. The mass of a sample had a marked effect on ice nucleation temperature. Small tissue samples supercooled to −10°C and were not accurate predictors of the nucleation temperature of intact plants in either laboratory or field experiments. This effect was not unique to plant tissues and was observed in autoclaved and control soil samples. Ice nucleation temperatures of bean, corn, cotton, and soybean seedlings were influenced by the length of subzero exposure, presence of ice nucleation active bacteria, and leaf surface wetness. The number of factors influencing ice nucleation temperature suggested that predicting the freezing behavior of plants in the field will be complex. PMID:16664524

  19. The formin mDia2 stabilizes microtubules independently of its actin nucleation activity

    PubMed Central

    Bartolini, Francesca; Moseley, James B.; Schmoranzer, Jan; Cassimeris, Lynne; Goode, Bruce L.; Gundersen, Gregg G.

    2008-01-01

    A critical microtubule (MT) polarization event in cell migration is the Rho/mDia-dependent stabilization of a subset of MTs oriented toward the direction of migration. Although mDia nucleates actin filaments, it is unclear whether this or a separate activity of mDia underlies MT stabilization. We generated two actin mutants (K853A and I704A) in a constitutively active version of mDia2 containing formin homology domains 1 and 2 (FH1FH2) and found that they still induced stable MTs and bound to the MT TIP proteins EB1 and APC, which have also been implicated in MT stabilization. A dimerization-impaired mutant of mDia2 (W630A) also generated stable MTs in cells. We examined whether FH1FH2mDia2 had direct activity on MTs in vitro and found that it bound directly to MTs, stabilized MTs against cold- and dilution-induced disassembly, and reduced the rates of growth and shortening during MT assembly and disassembly, respectively. These results indicate that mDia2 has a novel MT stabilization activity that is separate from its actin nucleation activity. PMID:18458159

  20. Actin Recruitment to the Chlamydia Inclusion Is Spatiotemporally Regulated by a Mechanism That Requires Host and Bacterial Factors

    PubMed Central

    Chin, Elizabeth; Kirker, Kelly; Zuck, Meghan; James, Garth; Hybiske, Kevin

    2012-01-01

    The ability to exit host cells at the end of their developmental growth is a critical step for the intracellular bacterium Chlamydia. One exit strategy, extrusion, is mediated by host signaling pathways involved with actin polymerization. Here, we show that actin is recruited to the chlamydial inclusion as a late event, occurring after 20 hours post-infection (hpi) and only within a subpopulation of cells. This event increases significantly in prevalence and extent from 20 to 68 hpi, and actin coats strongly correlated with extrusions. In contrast to what has been reported for other intracellular pathogens, actin nucleation on Chlamydia inclusions did not ‘flash’, but rather exhibited moderate depolymerization dynamics. By using small molecule agents to selectively disrupt host signaling pathways involved with actin nucleation, modulate actin polymerization dynamics and also to disable the synthesis and secretion of chlamydial proteins, we further show that host and bacterial proteins are required for actin coat formation. Transient disruption of either host or bacterial signaling pathways resulted in rapid loss of coats in all infected cells and a reduction in extrusion formation. Inhibition of Chlamydia type III secretion also resulted in rapid loss of actin association on inclusions, thus implicating chlamydial effector proteins(s) as being central factors for engaging with host actin nucleating factors, such as formins. In conclusion, our data illuminate the host and bacterial driven process by which a dense actin matrix is dynamically nucleated and maintained on the Chlamydia inclusion. This late stage event is not ubiquitous for all infected cells in a population, and escalates in prevalence and extent throughout the developmental cycle of Chlamydia, culminating with their exit from the host cell by extrusion. The initiation of actin recruitment by Chlamydia appears to be novel, and may serve as an upstream determinant of the extrusion mechanism. PMID

  1. The PCH family protein, Cdc15p, recruits two F-actin nucleation pathways to coordinate cytokinetic actin ring formation in Schizosaccharomyces pombe.

    PubMed

    Carnahan, Robert H; Gould, Kathleen L

    2003-09-01

    Cytokinetic actin ring (CAR) formation in Schizosaccharomyces pombe requires two independent actin nucleation pathways, one dependent on the Arp2/3 complex and another involving the formin Cdc12p. Here we investigate the role of the S. pombe Cdc15 homology family protein, Cdc15p, in CAR assembly and find that it interacts with proteins from both of these nucleation pathways. Cdc15p binds directly to the Arp2/3 complex activator Myo1p, which likely explains why actin patches and the Arp2/3 complex fail to be medially recruited during mitosis in cdc15 mutants. Cdc15p also binds directly to Cdc12p. Cdc15p and Cdc12p not only display mutual dependence for CAR localization, but also exist together in a ring-nucleating structure before CAR formation. The disruption of these interactions in cdc15 null cells is likely to be the reason for their complete lack of CARs. We propose a model in which Cdc15p plays a critical role in recruiting and coordinating the pathways essential for the assembly of medially located F-actin filaments and construction of the CAR.

  2. Actin depolymerizing factor controls actin turnover and gliding motility in Toxoplasma gondii

    PubMed Central

    Mehta, Simren; Sibley, L. David

    2011-01-01

    Apicomplexan parasites rely on actin-based gliding motility to move across the substratum, cross biological barriers, and invade their host cells. Gliding motility depends on polymerization of parasite actin filaments, yet ∼98% of actin is nonfilamentous in resting parasites. Previous studies suggest that the lack of actin filaments in the parasite is due to inherent instability, leaving uncertain the role of actin-binding proteins in controlling dynamics. We have previously shown that the single allele of Toxoplasma gondii actin depolymerizing factor (TgADF) has strong actin monomer–sequestering and weak filament-severing activities in vitro. Here we used a conditional knockout strategy to investigate the role of TgADF in vivo. Suppression of TgADF led to accumulation of actin-rich filaments that were detected by immunofluorescence and electron microscopy. Parasites deficient in TgADF showed reduced speed of motility, increased aberrant patterns of motion, and inhibition of sustained helical gliding. Lack of TgADF also led to severe defects in entry and egress from host cells, thus blocking infection in vitro. These studies establish that the absence of stable actin structures in the parasite are not simply the result of intrinsic instability, but that TgADF is required for the rapid turnover of parasite actin filaments, gliding motility, and cell invasion. PMID:21346192

  3. Metastasis Suppressor microRNA-335 Targets the Formin Family of Actin Nucleators

    PubMed Central

    Lynch, Jennifer; Meehan, Maria H.; Crean, John; Copeland, John; Stallings, Raymond L.; Bray, Isabella M.

    2013-01-01

    MiRNAs can have pleiotropic effects by targeting multiple genes belonging to diverse signalling networks. Alternatively, miRNAs can enhance the potency of their cellular effects by targeting multiple genes within the same genetic pathway. Previously, we and others have demonstrated that miR-335 is a potent suppressor of tumour cell migration, invasion and metastasis, in part by targeting several genes involved in these cellular processes, including ROCK1, MAPK1, LRG1, SP1 and SOX4. Here, we demonstrate that direct targeting of multiple members of the formin family of actin nucleators contributes to the inhibitory effects of miR-335 in neuroblastoma cells. We demonstrate that miR-335 regulates the expression of at least five formin family members and validate three family members, FMNL3, FMN2 and DAAM2, as direct targets of miR-335. The contribution of the formin family genes to cancer progression and metastasis has recently begun to emerge and here we demonstrate for the first time the ability of FMN2 and DAAM2 to regulate tumour cell migration and invasion, using siRNA-mediated inhibition of each of these formin genes. Finally, we demonstrate that the formin genes, in particular FMNL3, are responsible for the protrusion of actin-rich filopodia structures that contribute to the enhanced migratory and invasive potential associated with reduced expression of miR-335. Thus, direct targeting of the formin family contributes to the metastasis suppressing abilities of miR-335 by providing a direct regulatory link to the actin assembly machinery of the cell. We conclude that miR-335 is a master regulator of tumour cell migration and invasion by directly targeting a plethora of genes that effectively control cell migratory processes. PMID:24223803

  4. Multilayer defects nucleated by substrate pits: a comparison of actinic inspection and non-actinic inspection techniques

    SciTech Connect

    Barty, A; Goldberg, K; Kearney, P; Rekawa, S; LaFontaine, B; Wood, O; Taylor, J S; Han, H

    2006-10-02

    The production of defect-free mask blanks remains a key challenge for EUV lithography. Mask-blank inspection tools must be able to accurately detect all critical defects while simultaneously having the minimum possible false-positive detection rate. We have recently observed and here report the identification of bump-type buried substrate defects, that were below the detection limit of a non-actinic (i.e. non-EUV) in inspection tool. Presently, the occurrence inspection of pit-type defects, their printability, and their detectability with actinic techniques and non-actinic commercial tools, has become a significant concern. We believe that the most successful strategy for the development of effective non-actinic mask inspection tools will involve the careful cross-correlation with actinic inspection and lithographic printing. In this way, the true efficacy of prototype inspection tools now under development can be studied quantitatively against relevant benchmarks. To this end we have developed a dual-mode actinic mask inspection system capable of scanning mask blanks for defects (with simultaneous EUV bright-field and dark-field detection) and imaging those same defects with a zoneplate microscope that matches or exceeds the resolution of EUV steppers.

  5. Structural insights into de novo actin polymerization

    PubMed Central

    Dominguez, Roberto

    2010-01-01

    Summary Many cellular functions depend on rapid and localized actin polymerization/depolymerization. Yet, the de novo polymerization of actin in cells is kinetically unfavorable because of the instability of polymerization intermediates (small actin oligomers) and the actions of actin monomer binding proteins. Cells use filament nucleation and elongation factors to initiate and sustain polymerization. Structural biology is beginning to shed light on the diverse mechanisms by which these unrelated proteins initiate polymerization, undergo regulation, and mediate the transition of monomeric actin onto actin filaments. A prominent role is played by the W domain, which in some of these proteins occurs in tandem repeats that recruit multiple actin subunits. Pro-rich regions are also abundant and mediate the binding of profilin-actin complexes, which are the main source of polymerization competent actin in cells. Filament nucleation and elongation factors frequently interact with Rho family GTPases, which relay signals from membrane receptors to regulate actin cytoskeleton remodeling. PMID:20096561

  6. Arabidopsis ACTIN-DEPOLYMERIZING FACTOR7 Severs Actin Filaments and Regulates Actin Cable Turnover to Promote Normal Pollen Tube Growth[W

    PubMed Central

    Zheng, Yiyan; Xie, Yurong; Jiang, Yuxiang; Qu, Xiaolu; Huang, Shanjin

    2013-01-01

    Actin filaments are often arranged into higher-order structures, such as the longitudinal actin cables that generate the reverse fountain cytoplasmic streaming pattern present in pollen tubes. While several actin binding proteins have been implicated in the generation of these cables, the mechanisms that regulate their dynamic turnover remain largely unknown. Here, we show that Arabidopsis thaliana ACTIN-DEPOLYMERIZING FACTOR7 (ADF7) is required for turnover of longitudinal actin cables. In vitro biochemical analyses revealed that ADF7 is a typical ADF that prefers ADP-G-actin over ATP-G-actin. ADF7 inhibits nucleotide exchange on actin and severs filaments, but its filament severing and depolymerizing activities are less potent than those of the vegetative ADF1. ADF7 primarily decorates longitudinal actin cables in the shanks of pollen tubes. Consistent with this localization pattern, the severing frequency and depolymerization rate of filaments significantly decreased, while their maximum lifetime significantly increased, in adf7 pollen tube shanks. Furthermore, an ADF7–enhanced green fluorescent protein fusion with defective severing activity but normal G-actin binding activity could not complement adf7, providing compelling evidence that the severing activity of ADF7 is vital for its in vivo functions. These observations suggest that ADF7 evolved to promote turnover of longitudinal actin cables by severing actin filaments in pollen tubes. PMID:24058157

  7. Single-Molecule Studies of Actin Assembly and Disassembly Factors

    PubMed Central

    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. PMID:24630103

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  10. Endosome-ER Contacts Control Actin Nucleation and Retromer Function through VAP-Dependent Regulation of PI4P.

    PubMed

    Dong, Rui; Saheki, Yasunori; Swarup, Sharan; Lucast, Louise; Harper, J Wade; De Camilli, Pietro

    2016-07-14

    VAP (VAPA and VAPB) is an evolutionarily conserved endoplasmic reticulum (ER)-anchored protein that helps generate tethers between the ER and other membranes through which lipids are exchanged across adjacent bilayers. Here, we report that by regulating PI4P levels on endosomes, VAP affects WASH-dependent actin nucleation on these organelles and the function of the retromer, a protein coat responsible for endosome-to-Golgi traffic. VAP is recruited to retromer budding sites on endosomes via an interaction with the retromer SNX2 subunit. Cells lacking VAP accumulate high levels of PI4P, actin comets, and trans-Golgi proteins on endosomes. Such defects are mimicked by downregulation of OSBP, a VAP interactor and PI4P transporter that participates in VAP-dependent ER-endosomes tethers. These results reveal a role of PI4P in retromer-/WASH-dependent budding from endosomes. Collectively, our data show how the ER can control budding dynamics and association with the cytoskeleton of another membrane by direct contacts leading to bilayer lipid modifications. PMID:27419871

  11. Endosome-ER Contacts Control Actin Nucleation and Retromer Function through VAP-Dependent Regulation of PI4P.

    PubMed

    Dong, Rui; Saheki, Yasunori; Swarup, Sharan; Lucast, Louise; Harper, J Wade; De Camilli, Pietro

    2016-07-14

    VAP (VAPA and VAPB) is an evolutionarily conserved endoplasmic reticulum (ER)-anchored protein that helps generate tethers between the ER and other membranes through which lipids are exchanged across adjacent bilayers. Here, we report that by regulating PI4P levels on endosomes, VAP affects WASH-dependent actin nucleation on these organelles and the function of the retromer, a protein coat responsible for endosome-to-Golgi traffic. VAP is recruited to retromer budding sites on endosomes via an interaction with the retromer SNX2 subunit. Cells lacking VAP accumulate high levels of PI4P, actin comets, and trans-Golgi proteins on endosomes. Such defects are mimicked by downregulation of OSBP, a VAP interactor and PI4P transporter that participates in VAP-dependent ER-endosomes tethers. These results reveal a role of PI4P in retromer-/WASH-dependent budding from endosomes. Collectively, our data show how the ER can control budding dynamics and association with the cytoskeleton of another membrane by direct contacts leading to bilayer lipid modifications.

  12. 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.

  13. A Mechanism for Actin Filament Severing by Malaria Parasite Actin Depolymerizing Factor 1 via a Low Affinity Binding Interface*

    PubMed Central

    Wong, Wilson; Webb, Andrew I.; Olshina, Maya A.; Infusini, Giuseppe; Tan, Yan Hong; Hanssen, Eric; Catimel, Bruno; Suarez, Cristian; Condron, Melanie; Angrisano, Fiona; NebI, Thomas; Kovar, David R.; Baum, Jake

    2014-01-01

    Actin depolymerizing factor (ADF)/cofilins are essential regulators of actin turnover in eukaryotic cells. These multifunctional proteins facilitate both stabilization and severing of filamentous (F)-actin in a concentration-dependent manner. At high concentrations ADF/cofilins bind stably to F-actin longitudinally between two adjacent actin protomers forming what is called a decorative interaction. Low densities of ADF/cofilins, in contrast, result in the optimal severing of the filament. To date, how these two contrasting modalities are achieved by the same protein remains uncertain. Here, we define the proximate amino acids between the actin filament and the malaria parasite ADF/cofilin, PfADF1 from Plasmodium falciparum. PfADF1 is unique among ADF/cofilins in being able to sever F-actin but do so without stable filament binding. Using chemical cross-linking and mass spectrometry (XL-MS) combined with structure reconstruction we describe a previously overlooked binding interface on the actin filament targeted by PfADF1. This site is distinct from the known binding site that defines decoration. Furthermore, total internal reflection fluorescence (TIRF) microscopy imaging of single actin filaments confirms that this novel low affinity site is required for F-actin severing. Exploring beyond malaria parasites, selective blocking of the decoration site with human cofilin (HsCOF1) using cytochalasin D increases its severing rate. HsCOF1 may therefore also use a decoration-independent site for filament severing. Thus our data suggest that a second, low affinity actin-binding site may be universally used by ADF/cofilins for actin filament severing. PMID:24371134

  14. CASEIN KINASE1-LIKE PROTEIN2 Regulates Actin Filament Stability and Stomatal Closure via Phosphorylation of Actin Depolymerizing Factor.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Shuangshuang; Jiang, Yuxiang; Zhao, Yang; Huang, Shanjin; Yuan, Ming; Zhao, Yanxiu; Guo, Yan

    2016-06-01

    The opening and closing of stomata are crucial for plant photosynthesis and transpiration. Actin filaments undergo dynamic reorganization during stomatal closure, but the underlying mechanism for this cytoskeletal reorganization remains largely unclear. In this study, we identified and characterized Arabidopsis thaliana casein kinase 1-like protein 2 (CKL2), which responds to abscisic acid (ABA) treatment and participates in ABA- and drought-induced stomatal closure. Although CKL2 does not bind to actin filaments directly and has no effect on actin assembly in vitro, it colocalizes with and stabilizes actin filaments in guard cells. Further investigation revealed that CKL2 physically interacts with and phosphorylates actin depolymerizing factor 4 (ADF4) and inhibits its activity in actin filament disassembly. During ABA-induced stomatal closure, deletion of CKL2 in Arabidopsis alters actin reorganization in stomata and renders stomatal closure less sensitive to ABA, whereas deletion of ADF4 impairs the disassembly of actin filaments and causes stomatal closure to be more sensitive to ABA Deletion of ADF4 in the ckl2 mutant partially recues its ABA-insensitive stomatal closure phenotype. Moreover, Arabidopsis ADFs from subclass I are targets of CKL2 in vitro. Thus, our results suggest that CKL2 regulates actin filament reorganization and stomatal closure mainly through phosphorylation of ADF. PMID:27268429

  15. 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

  16. Structure of a Bud6/actin complex reveals a novel WH2-like actin monomer recruitment motif

    PubMed Central

    Park, Eunyoung; Graziano, Brian R.; Zheng, Wei; Garabedian, Mikael; Goode, Bruce L.; Eck, Michael J.

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY In budding yeast, the actin-binding protein Bud6 cooperates with formins Bni1 and Bnr1 to catalyze the assembly of actin filaments. The nucleation-enhancing activity of Bud6 requires both a “core” domain that binds to the formin and a “flank” domain that binds monomeric actin. Here we describe the structure of the Bud6 flank domain in complex with actin. Two helices in Bud6flank interact with actin; one binds in a groove at the barbed-end of the actin monomer in a manner closely resembling the helix of WH2 domains, a motif found in many actin nucleation factors. The second helix rises along the face of actin. Mutational analysis verifies the importance of these Bud6-actin contacts for nucleation-enhancing activity. The Bud6 binding site on actin overlaps with that of the formin FH2 domain and is also incompatible with inter-subunit contacts in F-actin, suggesting that Bud6 interacts only transiently with actin monomers during filament nucleation. PMID:26118535

  17. Structure of a Bud6/Actin Complex Reveals a Novel WH2-like Actin Monomer Recruitment Motif.

    PubMed

    Park, Eunyoung; Graziano, Brian R; Zheng, Wei; Garabedian, Mikael; Goode, Bruce L; Eck, Michael J

    2015-08-01

    In budding yeast, the actin-binding protein Bud6 cooperates with formins Bni1 and Bnr1 to catalyze the assembly of actin filaments. The nucleation-enhancing activity of Bud6 requires both a "core" domain that binds to the formin and a "flank" domain that binds monomeric actin. Here, we describe the structure of the Bud6 flank domain in complex with actin. Two helices in Bud6(flank) interact with actin; one binds in a groove at the barbed end of the actin monomer in a manner closely resembling the helix of WH2 domains, a motif found in many actin nucleation factors. The second helix rises along the face of actin. Mutational analysis verifies the importance of these Bud6-actin contacts for nucleation-enhancing activity. The Bud6 binding site on actin overlaps with that of the formin FH2 domain and is also incompatible with inter-subunit contacts in F-actin, suggesting that Bud6 interacts only transiently with actin monomers during filament nucleation.

  18. Role and structural mechanism of WASP-triggered conformational changes in branched actin filament nucleation by Arp2/3 complex.

    PubMed

    Rodnick-Smith, Max; Luan, Qing; Liu, Su-Ling; Nolen, Brad J

    2016-07-01

    The Arp2/3 (Actin-related proteins 2/3) complex is activated by WASP (Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein) family proteins to nucleate branched actin filaments that are important for cellular motility. WASP recruits actin monomers to the complex and stimulates movement of Arp2 and Arp3 into a "short-pitch" conformation that mimics the arrangement of actin subunits within filaments. The relative contribution of these functions in Arp2/3 complex activation and the mechanism by which WASP stimulates the conformational change have been unknown. We purified budding yeast Arp2/3 complex held in or near the short-pitch conformation by an engineered covalent cross-link to determine if the WASP-induced conformational change is sufficient for activity. Remarkably, cross-linked Arp2/3 complex bypasses the need for WASP in activation and is more active than WASP-activated Arp2/3 complex. These data indicate that stimulation of the short-pitch conformation is the critical activating function of WASP and that monomer delivery is not a fundamental requirement for nucleation but is a specific requirement for WASP-mediated activation. During activation, WASP limits nucleation rates by releasing slowly from nascent branches. The cross-linked complex is inhibited by WASP's CA region, even though CA potently stimulates cross-linking, suggesting that slow WASP detachment masks the activating potential of the short-pitch conformational switch. We use structure-based mutations and WASP-Arp fusion chimeras to determine how WASP stimulates movement toward the short-pitch conformation. Our data indicate that WASP displaces the autoinhibitory Arp3 C-terminal tail from a hydrophobic groove at Arp3's barbed end to destabilize the inactive state, providing a mechanism by which WASP stimulates the short-pitch conformation and activates Arp2/3 complex. PMID:27325766

  19. Is actin a transcription initiation factor for RNA polymerase B?

    PubMed Central

    Egly, J M; Miyamoto, N G; Moncollin, V; Chambon, P

    1984-01-01

    We have previously reported that two fractions derived from HeLa cell S100 extracts, the heparin flow-through and the heparin 0.6 M KCl eluate are required in vitro for efficient and accurate transcription by RNA polymerase class B (II). We have further purified a factor present in the heparin flow-through fraction, which markedly stimulates specific transcription catalyzed by the heparin 0.6 M KCl eluate. We report here that some of the properties of the stimulatory factor present in our most purified fractions are strikingly similar to those of actin. We demonstrate also that this factor acts at the pre-initiation level of the transcription reaction. Images Fig. 2. Fig. 3. Fig. 4. Fig. 5. Fig. 7. Fig. 8. Fig. 9. Fig. 10. Fig. 11. Fig. 12. Fig. 13. PMID:6499833

  20. Nicotiana tabacum actin-depolymerizing factor 2 is involved in actin-driven, auxin-dependent patterning.

    PubMed

    Durst, Steffen; Nick, Peter; Maisch, Jan

    2013-08-15

    Polar transport of auxin has been identified as a central element of pattern formation. To address the underlying cellular mechanisms, we use the tobacco cell line (Nicotiana tabacum L. cv. Bright Yellow 2; BY-2) as model. We showed previously that cell divisions within a cell file are synchronized by polar auxin flow, linked to the organization of actin filaments (AF) which, in turn, is modified via actin-binding proteins (ABPs). From a preparatory study for disturbed division synchrony in cell lines overexpressing different ABPs, we identified the actin depolymerizing factor 2 (ADF2). A cell line overexpressing GFP-NtADF2 was specifically affected in division synchrony. The cell division pattern could be rescued by addition of Phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate (PIP2) or by phalloidin. These observations allow to draw first conclusions on the pathway linking auxin signalling via actin reorganization to synchronized cell division placing the regulation of cortical actin turnover by ADF2 into the focus. PMID:23545293

  1. Inhibition of breast cancer invasion by TIS21/BTG2/Pc3-Akt1-Sp1-Nox4 pathway targeting actin nucleators, mDia genes.

    PubMed

    Choi, J-A; Jung, Y S; Kim, J Y; Kim, H M; Lim, I K

    2016-01-01

    The mammalian homolog of Drosophila diaphanous (mDia), actin nucleator, has been known to participate in the process of invasion and metastasis of cancer cells via regulating a number of actin-related biological processes. We have previously reported that tumor suppressor TIS21(/BTG2/Pc3) (TIS21) inhibits invadopodia formation by downregulating reactive oxygen species (ROS) in MDA-MB-231 cells. We herein report that TIS21(/BTG2/Pc3) downregulates diaphanous-related formin (DRF) expression via reducing NADPH oxidase 4 (Nox4)-derived ROS generation by Akt1 activation and subsequently impairs invasion activity of the highly invasive breast cancer cells. Knockdown of Akt1 by RNA interference recovered the TIS21(/BTG2/Pc3)-inhibited F-actin remodeling and ROS generation by recovering Nox4 expression. Furthermore, Sp1-mediated Nox4 transcription was downregulated by TIS21(/BTG2/Pc3)-Akt1 signals, leading to the inhibition of cancer cell invasion via F-actin remodeling by mDia genes. To our best knowledge, this is the first study to show that TIS21(/BTG2/Pc3)-Akt1 inhibited Sp1-Nox4-ROS cascade, subsequently reducing invasion activity via inhibition of mDia family genes.

  2. Quantifying actin wave modulation on periodic topography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guven, Can; Driscoll, Meghan; Sun, Xiaoyu; Parker, Joshua; Fourkas, John; Carlsson, Anders; Losert, Wolfgang

    2014-03-01

    Actin is the essential builder of the cell cytoskeleton, whose dynamics are responsible for generating the necessary forces for the formation of protrusions. By exposing amoeboid cells to periodic topographical cues, we show that actin can be directionally guided via inducing preferential polymerization waves. To quantify the dynamics of these actin waves and their interaction with the substrate, we modify a technique from computer vision called ``optical flow.'' We obtain vectors that represent the apparent actin flow and cluster these vectors to obtain patches of newly polymerized actin, which represent actin waves. Using this technique, we compare experimental results, including speed distribution of waves and distance from the wave centroid to the closest ridge, with actin polymerization simulations. We hypothesize the modulation of the activity of nucleation promotion factors on ridges (elevated regions of the surface) as a potential mechanism for the wave-substrate coupling. Funded by NIH grant R01GM085574.

  3. Pollen specific expression of maize genes encoding actin depolymerizing factor-like proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Lopez, I; Anthony, R G; Maciver, S K; Jiang, C J; Khan, S; Weeds, A G; Hussey, P J

    1996-01-01

    In pollen development, a dramatic reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton takes place during the passage of the pollen grain into dormancy and on activation of pollen tube growth. A role for actin-binding proteins is implicated and we report here the identification of a small gene family in maize that encodes actin depolymerizing factor (ADF)-like proteins. The ADF group of proteins are believed to control actin polymerization and depolymerization in response to both intracellular and extracellular signals. Two of the maize genes ZmABP1 and ZmABP2 are expressed specifically in pollen and germinating pollen suggesting that the protein products may be involved in pollen actin reorganization. A third gene, ZmABP3, encodes a protein only 56% and 58% identical to ZmABP1 and ZmABP2, respectively, and its expression is suppressed in pollen and germinated pollen. The fundamental biochemical characteristics of the ZmABP proteins has been elucidated using bacterially expressed ZmABP3 protein. This has the ability to bind monomeric actin (G-actin) and filamentous actin (F-actin). Moreover, it decreases the viscosity of polymerized actin solutions consistent with an ability to depolymerize filaments. These biochemical characteristics, taken together with the sequence comparisons, support the inclusion of the ZmABP proteins in the ADF group. Images Fig. 2 Fig. 3 Fig. 4 Fig. 5 PMID:8693008

  4. Arabidopsis Actin Depolymerizing Factor4 Modulates the Stochastic Dynamic Behavior of Actin Filaments in the Cortical Array of Epidermal Cells[C][W

    PubMed Central

    Henty, Jessica L.; Bledsoe, Samuel W.; Khurana, Parul; Meagher, Richard B.; Day, Brad; Blanchoin, Laurent; Staiger, Christopher J.

    2011-01-01

    Actin filament arrays are constantly remodeled as the needs of cells change as well as during responses to biotic and abiotic stimuli. Previous studies demonstrate that many single actin filaments in the cortical array of living Arabidopsis thaliana epidermal cells undergo stochastic dynamics, a combination of rapid growth balanced by disassembly from prolific severing activity. Filament turnover and dynamics are well understood from in vitro biochemical analyses and simple reconstituted systems. However, the identification in living cells of the molecular players involved in controlling actin dynamics awaits the use of model systems, especially ones where the power of genetics can be combined with imaging of individual actin filaments at high spatial and temporal resolution. Here, we test the hypothesis that actin depolymerizing factor (ADF)/cofilin contributes to stochastic filament severing and facilitates actin turnover. A knockout mutant for Arabidopsis ADF4 has longer hypocotyls and epidermal cells when compared with wild-type seedlings. This correlates with a change in actin filament architecture; cytoskeletal arrays in adf4 cells are significantly more bundled and less dense than in wild-type cells. Several parameters of single actin filament turnover are also altered. Notably, adf4 mutant cells have a 2.5-fold reduced severing frequency as well as significantly increased actin filament lengths and lifetimes. Thus, we provide evidence that ADF4 contributes to the stochastic dynamic turnover of actin filaments in plant cells. PMID:22010035

  5. Actin dynamics tune the integrated stress response by regulating eukaryotic initiation factor 2α dephosphorylation

    PubMed Central

    Chambers, Joseph E; Dalton, Lucy E; Clarke, Hanna J; Malzer, Elke; Dominicus, Caia S; Patel, Vruti; Moorhead, Greg; Ron, David; Marciniak, Stefan J

    2015-01-01

    Four stress-sensing kinases phosphorylate the alpha subunit of eukaryotic translation initiation factor 2 (eIF2α) to activate the integrated stress response (ISR). In animals, the ISR is antagonised by selective eIF2α phosphatases comprising a catalytic protein phosphatase 1 (PP1) subunit in complex with a PPP1R15-type regulatory subunit. An unbiased search for additional conserved components of the PPP1R15-PP1 phosphatase identified monomeric G-actin. Like PP1, G-actin associated with the functional core of PPP1R15 family members and G-actin depletion, by the marine toxin jasplakinolide, destabilised the endogenous PPP1R15A-PP1 complex. The abundance of the ternary PPP1R15-PP1-G-actin complex was responsive to global changes in the polymeric status of actin, as was its eIF2α-directed phosphatase activity, while localised G-actin depletion at sites enriched for PPP1R15 enhanced eIF2α phosphorylation and the downstream ISR. G-actin's role as a stabilizer of the PPP1R15-containing holophosphatase provides a mechanism for integrating signals regulating actin dynamics with stresses that trigger the ISR. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.04872.001 PMID:25774599

  6. Actin dynamics tune the integrated stress response by regulating eukaryotic initiation factor 2α dephosphorylation.

    PubMed

    Chambers, Joseph E; Dalton, Lucy E; Clarke, Hanna J; Malzer, Elke; Dominicus, Caia S; Patel, Vruti; Moorhead, Greg; Ron, David; Marciniak, Stefan J

    2015-01-01

    Four stress-sensing kinases phosphorylate the alpha subunit of eukaryotic translation initiation factor 2 (eIF2α) to activate the integrated stress response (ISR). In animals, the ISR is antagonised by selective eIF2α phosphatases comprising a catalytic protein phosphatase 1 (PP1) subunit in complex with a PPP1R15-type regulatory subunit. An unbiased search for additional conserved components of the PPP1R15-PP1 phosphatase identified monomeric G-actin. Like PP1, G-actin associated with the functional core of PPP1R15 family members and G-actin depletion, by the marine toxin jasplakinolide, destabilised the endogenous PPP1R15A-PP1 complex. The abundance of the ternary PPP1R15-PP1-G-actin complex was responsive to global changes in the polymeric status of actin, as was its eIF2α-directed phosphatase activity, while localised G-actin depletion at sites enriched for PPP1R15 enhanced eIF2α phosphorylation and the downstream ISR. G-actin's role as a stabilizer of the PPP1R15-containing holophosphatase provides a mechanism for integrating signals regulating actin dynamics with stresses that trigger the ISR.

  7. Profilin connects actin assembly with microtubule dynamics.

    PubMed

    Nejedla, Michaela; Sadi, Sara; Sulimenko, Vadym; de Almeida, Francisca Nunes; Blom, Hans; Draber, Pavel; Aspenström, Pontus; Karlsson, Roger

    2016-08-01

    Profilin controls actin nucleation and assembly processes in eukaryotic cells. Actin nucleation and elongation promoting factors (NEPFs) such as Ena/VASP, formins, and WASP-family proteins recruit profilin:actin for filament formation. Some of these are found to be microtubule associated, making actin polymerization from microtubule-associated platforms possible. Microtubules are implicated in focal adhesion turnover, cell polarity establishment, and migration, illustrating the coupling between actin and microtubule systems. Here we demonstrate that profilin is functionally linked to microtubules with formins and point to formins as major mediators of this association. To reach this conclusion, we combined different fluorescence microscopy techniques, including superresolution microscopy, with siRNA modulation of profilin expression and drug treatments to interfere with actin dynamics. Our studies show that profilin dynamically associates with microtubules and this fraction of profilin contributes to balance actin assembly during homeostatic cell growth and affects micro-tubule dynamics. Hence profilin functions as a regulator of microtubule (+)-end turnover in addition to being an actin control element.

  8. Profilin connects actin assembly with microtubule dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Nejedla, Michaela; Sadi, Sara; Sulimenko, Vadym; de Almeida, Francisca Nunes; Blom, Hans; Draber, Pavel; Aspenström, Pontus; Karlsson, Roger

    2016-01-01

    Profilin controls actin nucleation and assembly processes in eukaryotic cells. Actin nucleation and elongation promoting factors (NEPFs) such as Ena/VASP, formins, and WASP-family proteins recruit profilin:actin for filament formation. Some of these are found to be microtubule associated, making actin polymerization from microtubule-associated platforms possible. Microtubules are implicated in focal adhesion turnover, cell polarity establishment, and migration, illustrating the coupling between actin and microtubule systems. Here we demonstrate that profilin is functionally linked to microtubules with formins and point to formins as major mediators of this association. To reach this conclusion, we combined different fluorescence microscopy techniques, including superresolution microscopy, with siRNA modulation of profilin expression and drug treatments to interfere with actin dynamics. Our studies show that profilin dynamically associates with microtubules and this fraction of profilin contributes to balance actin assembly during homeostatic cell growth and affects micro­tubule dynamics. Hence profilin functions as a regulator of microtubule (+)-end turnover in addition to being an actin control element. PMID:27307590

  9. Transcription factor binding and spacing constraints in the human beta-actin proximal promoter.

    PubMed Central

    Danilition, S L; Frederickson, R M; Taylor, C Y; Miyamoto, N G

    1991-01-01

    The human beta-actin promoter, including its 5' flanking region and 5' untranslated region, is ubiquitously active in mammalian cells in culture. In this report we investigated the transcriptional activity of, and the protein-DNA interactions that occur within, the proximal region of the human beta-actin promoter. Efficient beta-actin promoter activity in transfected human HeLa cells requires only 114bp of 5' flanking sequences. Two of the cis-actin regulatory elements within this region of the beta-actin promoter, the CCAAT box and proximal CCArGG box, are specific in vitro binding sites for the transcription factors, nuclear factor Y (NF-Y) and serum response factor (p67SRF), respectively. These two elements are required together to stimulate in vivo transcription from the homologous as well as a heterologous promoter. Finally, a particular spatial alignment between the CCAAT box and proximal CCArGG box is required for trans-activation in vivo. The above provides strong evidence for a functional interaction between NF-Y and p67SRF when bound to their respective binding sites in the beta-actin promoter. Images PMID:1762920

  10. The Actin Depolymerizing Factor (ADF)/Cofilin Signaling Pathway and DNA Damage Responses in Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Chun-Yuan; Leu, Jyh-Der; Lee, Yi-Jang

    2015-01-01

    The actin depolymerizing factor (ADF)/cofilin protein family is essential for actin dynamics, cell division, chemotaxis and tumor metastasis. Cofilin-1 (CFL-1) is a primary non-muscle isoform of the ADF/cofilin protein family accelerating the actin filamental turnover in vitro and in vivo. In response to environmental stimulation, CFL-1 enters the nucleus to regulate the actin dynamics. Although the purpose of this cytoplasm-nucleus transition remains unclear, it is speculated that the interaction between CFL-1 and DNA may influence various biological responses, including DNA damage repair. In this review, we will discuss the possible involvement of CFL-1 in DNA damage responses (DDR) induced by ionizing radiation (IR), and the implications for cancer radiotherapy. PMID:25689427

  11. EspF Interacts with Nucleation-Promoting Factors To Recruit Junctional Proteins into Pedestals for Pedestal Maturation and Disruption of Paracellular Permeability ▿

    PubMed Central

    Peralta-Ramírez, Janneth; Hernandez, J. Manuel; Manning-Cela, Rebeca; Luna-Muñoz, José; Garcia-Tovar, Carlos; Nougayréde, Jean-Philippe; Oswald, Eric; Navarro-Garcia, Fernando

    2008-01-01

    Many pathogenic bacteria subvert normal host cell processes by delivering effector proteins which mimic eukaryotic functions directly into target cells. EspF is a multifunctional protein injected into host cells by attaching and effacing pathogens, but its mechanism of action is not understood completely. In silico analyses of EspF revealed two key motifs: proline-rich domains and PDZ domain binding motifs. Such functional domains may allow EspF to act as an actin nucleation-promoting factor by mimicking host proteins. In agreement with these predictions, we found that EspF from rabbit enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (E22) participates in the regulation of actin polymerization by binding to a complex of proteins at the tight junctions (TJ). EspF bound to actin and profilin throughout the course of infection. However, after 2 h of infection, EspF also bound to the neural Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein and to the Arp2/3, zonula occludens-1 (ZO-1), and ZO-2 proteins. Moreover, EspF caused occludin, claudin, ZO-1, and ZO-2 redistribution and loss of transepithelial electrical resistance, suggesting that actin sequestration by EspF may cause local actin depolymerization leading to EspF-induced TJ disruption. Furthermore, EspF caused recruitment of these TJ proteins into the pedestals. An E22 strain lacking EspF did not cause TJ disruption and pedestals were smaller than those induced by the wild-type strain. Additionally, the pedestals were located mainly in the TJ. The overexpression of EspF caused bigger pedestals located along the length of the cells. Thus, actin sequestration by EspF allows the recruitment of junctional proteins into the pedestals, leading to the maturation of actin pedestals and the disruption of paracellular permeability. PMID:18559425

  12. Bacterial ice nucleation: a factor in frost injury to plants.

    PubMed

    Lindow, S E; Arny, D C; Upper, C D

    1982-10-01

    Heterogeneous ice nuclei are necessary, and the common epiphytic ice nucleation active (INA) bacteria Pseudomonas syringae van Hall and Erwinia herbicola (Löhnis) Dye are sufficient to incite frost injury to sensitive plants at -5 degrees C. The ice nucleation activity of the bacteria occurs at the same temperatures at which frost injury to sensitive plants occurs in nature. Bacterial ice nucleation on leaves can be detected at about -2 degrees C, whereas the leaves themselves, i.e. without INA bacteria, contain nuclei active only at much lower temperatures. The temperature at which injury to plants occurs is predictable on the basis of the ice nucleation activity of leaf discs, which in turn depends on the number and ice nucleation activity of their resident bacteria. Bacterial isolates which are able to incite injury to corn at -5 degrees C are always active as ice nuclei at -5 degrees C. INA bacteria incited frost injury to all of the species of sensitive plants tested. PMID:16662618

  13. 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

  14. Identification of Arabidopsis Cyclase-associated Protein 1 as the First Nucleotide Exchange Factor for Plant Actin

    PubMed Central

    Chaudhry, Faisal; Guérin, Christophe; von Witsch, Matthias

    2007-01-01

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

  15. Phylogeny of the Glomerales and Diversisporales (fungi: Glomeromycota) from actin and elongation factor 1-alpha sequences.

    PubMed

    Helgason, Thorunn; Watson, Irene J; Young, J Peter W

    2003-12-01

    The arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi have been elevated to the phylum Glomeromycota based on a ribosomal gene phylogeny. In order to test this phylogeny, we amplified and sequenced small subunit ribosomal RNA (SSUrRNA), actin and elongation factor 1 (EF1)-alpha gene fragments from single spores of Acaulospora laevis, Glomus caledonium, Gigaspora margarita, and Scutellospora dipurpurescens. Sequence variation within and among spores of an isolate was low except for SSUrRNA in S. dipurpurescens, and the actin amino acid sequence was more conserved than that of EF1-alpha. The AM fungal sequences were more similar to one another than to any other fungal group. Joint phylogenetic analysis of the actin and EF1-alpha sequences suggested that the sister group to the AM fungi was a Zygomycete order, the Mortierellales.

  16. G-actin sequestering protein thymosin-β4 regulates the activity of myocardin-related transcription factor

    SciTech Connect

    Morita, Tsuyoshi Hayashi, Ken’ichiro

    2013-08-02

    Highlights: •Tβ4 competed with MRTF-A for G-actin binding. •Tβ4 activated the MRTF–SRF signaling pathway. •Tβ4 increased the endogenous expression of SRF-dependent genes. -- Abstract: Myocardin-related transcription factors (MRTFs) are robust coactivators of serum response factor (SRF). MRTFs contain three copies of the RPEL motif at their N-terminus, and they bind to monomeric globular actin (G-actin). Previous studies illustrate that G-actin binding inhibits MRTF activity by preventing the MRTFs nuclear accumulation. In the living cells, the majority of G-actin is sequestered by G-actin binding proteins that prevent spontaneous actin polymerization. Here, we demonstrate that the most abundant G-actin sequestering protein thymosin-β4 (Tβ4) was involved in the regulation of subcellular localization and activity of MRTF-A. Tβ4 competed with MRTF-A for G-actin binding; thus, interfering with G-actin–MRTF-A complex formation. Tβ4 overexpression induced the MRTF-A nuclear accumulation and activation of MRTF–SRF signaling. The activation rate of MRTF-A by the Tβ4 mutant L17A, whose affinity for G-actin is very low, was lower than that by wild-type Tβ4. In contrast, the β-actin mutant 3DA, which has a lower affinity for Tβ4, more effectively suppressed MRTF-A activity than wild-type β-actin. Furthermore, ectopic Tβ4 increased the endogenous expression of SRF-dependent actin cytoskeletal genes. Thus, Tβ4 is an important MRTF regulator that controls the G-actin–MRTFs interaction.

  17. Rickettsia Sca2 is a bacterial formin-like mediator of actin-based motility

    PubMed Central

    Haglund, Cat M.; Choe, Julie E.; Skau, Colleen T.; Kovar, David R.; Welch, Matthew D.

    2011-01-01

    Diverse intracellular pathogens subvert the host actin polymerization machinery to drive movement within and between cells during infection. Rickettsia in the spotted fever group (SFG) are Gram-negative, obligate intracellular bacterial pathogens that undergo actin-based motility and assemble distinctive ‘comet tails’ that consist of long, unbranched actin filaments1,2. Despite this distinct organization, it was proposed that actin in Rickettsia comet tails is nucleated by the host Arp2/3 complex and the bacterial protein RickA, which assemble branched actin networks3,4. However, a second bacterial gene, sca2, was recently implicated in actin tail formation by R. rickettsii5. Here, we demonstrate that Sca2 is a bacterial actin-assembly factor that functionally mimics eukaryotic formin proteins. Sca2 nucleates unbranched actin filaments, processively associates with growing barbed ends, requires profilin for efficient elongation, and inhibits the activity of capping protein, all properties shared with formins. Sca2 localizes to the Rickettsia surface and is sufficient to promote the assembly of actin filaments in cytoplasmic extract. These results suggest that Sca2 mimics formins to determine the unique organization of actin filaments in Rickettsia tails and drive bacterial motility, independently of host nucleators. PMID:20972427

  18. 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

  19. TaADF3, an Actin-Depolymerizing Factor, Negatively Modulates Wheat Resistance Against Puccinia striiformis.

    PubMed

    Tang, Chunlei; Deng, Lin; Chang, Dan; Chen, Shuntao; Wang, Xiaojie; Kang, Zhensheng

    2015-01-01

    The actin cytoskeleton has been implicated in plant defense against pathogenic fungi, oomycetes, and bacteria. Actin depolymerizing factors (ADFs) are stimulus responsive actin cytoskeleton modulators. However, there is limited evidence linking ADFs with plant defense against pathogens. In this study, we have isolated and functionally characterized a stress-responsive ADF gene (TaADF3) from wheat, which was detectable in all examined wheat tissues. TaADF3 is a three-copy gene located on chromosomes 5AL, 5BL, and 5DL. A particle bombardment assay in onion epidermal cells revealed the cytoplasmic and nuclear localization of TaADF3. The expression of TaADF3 was inducible by abscisic acid (ABA), as well as various abiotic stresses (drought and cold) and virulent Puccinia striiformis f. sp. tritici (Pst) but was down regulated in response to avirulent Pst. Virus-induced silencing of TaADF3 copies enhanced wheat resistance to avirulent Pst, with decreased reactive oxygen species (ROS) accumulation and hypersensitive response (HR). Upon treatment with virulent Pst, TaADF3-knockdown plants exhibited reduced susceptibility, which was accompanied by increased ROS production and HR. Interestingly, the silencing of TaADF3 resulted in hindered pathogen penetration and haustoria formation for both avirulent and virulent Pst. Moreover, the array and distribution of actin filaments was transformed in TaADF3-knockdown epidermal cells, which possibly facilitated attenuating the fungus penetration. Thus, our findings suggest that TaADF3 positively regulates wheat tolerance to abiotic stresses and negatively regulates wheat resistance to Pst in an ROS-dependent manner, possibly underlying the mechanism of impeding fungal penetration dependent on the actin architecture dynamics. PMID:26834758

  20. TaADF3, an Actin-Depolymerizing Factor, Negatively Modulates Wheat Resistance Against Puccinia striiformis

    PubMed Central

    Tang, Chunlei; Deng, Lin; Chang, Dan; Chen, Shuntao; Wang, Xiaojie; Kang, Zhensheng

    2016-01-01

    The actin cytoskeleton has been implicated in plant defense against pathogenic fungi, oomycetes, and bacteria. Actin depolymerizing factors (ADFs) are stimulus responsive actin cytoskeleton modulators. However, there is limited evidence linking ADFs with plant defense against pathogens. In this study, we have isolated and functionally characterized a stress-responsive ADF gene (TaADF3) from wheat, which was detectable in all examined wheat tissues. TaADF3 is a three-copy gene located on chromosomes 5AL, 5BL, and 5DL. A particle bombardment assay in onion epidermal cells revealed the cytoplasmic and nuclear localization of TaADF3. The expression of TaADF3 was inducible by abscisic acid (ABA), as well as various abiotic stresses (drought and cold) and virulent Puccinia striiformis f. sp. tritici (Pst) but was down regulated in response to avirulent Pst. Virus-induced silencing of TaADF3 copies enhanced wheat resistance to avirulent Pst, with decreased reactive oxygen species (ROS) accumulation and hypersensitive response (HR). Upon treatment with virulent Pst, TaADF3-knockdown plants exhibited reduced susceptibility, which was accompanied by increased ROS production and HR. Interestingly, the silencing of TaADF3 resulted in hindered pathogen penetration and haustoria formation for both avirulent and virulent Pst. Moreover, the array and distribution of actin filaments was transformed in TaADF3-knockdown epidermal cells, which possibly facilitated attenuating the fungus penetration. Thus, our findings suggest that TaADF3 positively regulates wheat tolerance to abiotic stresses and negatively regulates wheat resistance to Pst in an ROS-dependent manner, possibly underlying the mechanism of impeding fungal penetration dependent on the actin architecture dynamics. PMID:26834758

  1. Stromal cell-derived factor 1 regulates the actin organization of chondrocytes and chondrocyte hypertrophy.

    PubMed

    Murata, Koichi; Kitaori, Toshiyuki; Oishi, Shinya; Watanabe, Naoki; Yoshitomi, Hiroyuki; Tanida, Shimei; Ishikawa, Masahiro; Kasahara, Takashi; Shibuya, Hideyuki; Fujii, Nobutaka; Nagasawa, Takashi; Nakamura, Takashi; Ito, Hiromu

    2012-01-01

    Stromal cell-derived factor 1 (SDF-1/CXCL12/PBSF) plays important roles in the biological and physiological functions of haematopoietic and mesenchymal stem cells. This chemokine regulates the formation of multiple organ systems during embryogenesis. However, its roles in skeletal development remain unclear. Here we investigated the roles of SDF-1 in chondrocyte differentiation. We demonstrated that SDF-1 protein was expressed at pre-hypertrophic and hypertrophic chondrocytes in the newly formed endochondral callus of rib fracture as well as in the growth plate of normal mouse tibia by immunohistochemical analysis. Using SDF-1(-/-) mouse embryo, we histologically showed that the total length of the whole humeri of SDF-1(-/-) mice was significantly shorter than that of wild-type mice, which was contributed mainly by shorter hypertrophic and calcified zones in SDF-1(-/-) mice. Actin cytoskeleton of hypertrophic chondrocytes in SDF-1(-/-) mouse humeri showed less F-actin and rounder shape than that of wild-type mice. Primary chondrocytes from SDF-1(-/-) mice showed the enhanced formation of philopodia and loss of F-actin. The administration of SDF-1 to primary chondrocytes of wild-type mice and SDF-1(-/-) mice promoted the formation of actin stress fibers. Organ culture of embryonic metatarsals from SDF-1(-/-) mice showed the growth delay, which was recovered by an exogenous administration of SDF-1. mRNA expression of type X collagen in metatarsals and in primary chondrocytes of SDF-1(-/-) mouse embryo was down-regulated while the administration of SDF-1 to metatarsals recovered. These data suggests that SDF-1 regulates the actin organization and stimulates bone growth by mediating chondrocyte hypertrophy.

  2. Reconstitution and Protein Composition Analysis of Endocytic Actin Patches

    PubMed Central

    Michelot, Alphée; Costanzo, Michael; Sarkeshik, Ali; Boone, Charles; Yates, John R.; Drubin, David G.

    2010-01-01

    Summary Background Clathrin-actin-mediated endocytosis in yeast involves the progressive assembly of at least 60 different proteins at cortical sites. More than half of these proteins are involved in the assembly of a branched network of actin filaments to provide the forces required for plasma membrane invagination. Results To gain insights into the regulation of endocytic actin patch dynamics, we developed an in vitro actin assembly assay using microbeads functionalized with the nucleation promoting factor (NPF) Las17 (yeast WASP). When incubated in a yeast extract, these beads assembled actin networks and a significant fraction became motile. Multi dimensional Protein Identification Technology (MudPIT) showed that the recruitment of actin binding proteins to these Las17-derived actin networks is selective. None of the proteins known to exclusively regulate the in vivo formation of actin cables or the actin contractile ring were identified. Intriguingly, our analysis also identified components of three other cortical structures, eisosomes, PIK patches and the TORC2 complex, establishing intriguing biochemical connections between four different yeast cortical complexes. Finally, we identified Aim3 as a regulator of actin dynamics at endocytic sites. Conclusions WASP is sufficient to trigger assembly of actin networks composed selectively of actin-patch proteins. These experiments establish that the protein composition of different F-actin structures is determined by the protein factor that initiates the network. The identification of binding partners revealed new biochemical connections between WASP derived networks and other cortical complexes and identified Aim3 as a novel regulator of the endocytic actin patch. PMID:21035341

  3. Guardians of the actin monomer.

    PubMed

    Xue, Bo; Robinson, Robert C

    2013-01-01

    Actin is a universal force provider in eukaryotic cells. Biological processes harness the pressure generated from actin polymerization through dictating the time, place and direction of filament growth. As such, polymerization is initiated and maintained via tightly controlled filament nucleation and elongation machineries. Biological systems integrate force into their activities through recruiting and activating these machineries. In order that actin function as a common force generating polymerization motor, cells must maintain a pool of active, polymerization-ready monomeric actin, and minimize extemporaneous polymerization. Maintenance of the active monomeric actin pool requires the recycling of actin filaments, through depolymerization, nucleotide exchange and reloading of the polymerization machineries, while the levels of monomers are constantly monitored and supplemented, when needed, via the access of a reserve pool of monomers and through gene expression. Throughout its monomeric life, actin needs to be protected against gratuitous nucleation events. Here, we review the proteins that act as custodians of monomeric actin. We estimate their levels on a tissue scale, and calculate the implied concentrations of each actin complex based on reported binding affinities. These estimations predict that monomeric actin is rarely, if ever, alone. Thus, the guardians keep the volatility of actin in check, so that its explosive power is only released in the controlled environments of the nucleation and polymerization machineries. PMID:24268205

  4. G-actin provides substrate-specificity to eukaryotic initiation factor 2α holophosphatases

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Ruming; Rato, Cláudia; Yan, Yahui; Crespillo-Casado, Ana; Clarke, Hanna J; Harding, Heather P; Marciniak, Stefan J; Read, Randy J; Ron, David

    2015-01-01

    Dephosphorylation of eukaryotic translation initiation factor 2a (eIF2a) restores protein synthesis at the waning of stress responses and requires a PP1 catalytic subunit and a regulatory subunit, PPP1R15A/GADD34 or PPP1R15B/CReP. Surprisingly, PPP1R15-PP1 binary complexes reconstituted in vitro lacked substrate selectivity. However, selectivity was restored by crude cell lysate or purified G-actin, which joined PPP1R15-PP1 to form a stable ternary complex. In crystal structures of the non-selective PPP1R15B-PP1G complex, the functional core of PPP1R15 made multiple surface contacts with PP1G, but at a distance from the active site, whereas in the substrate-selective ternary complex, actin contributes to one face of a platform encompassing the active site. Computational docking of the N-terminal lobe of eIF2a at this platform placed phosphorylated serine 51 near the active site. Mutagenesis of predicted surface-contacting residues enfeebled dephosphorylation, suggesting that avidity for the substrate plays an important role in imparting specificity on the PPP1R15B-PP1G-actin ternary complex. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.04871.001 PMID:25774600

  5. Isolation and characterization of a regulated form of actin depolymerizing factor.

    PubMed

    Morgan, T E; Lockerbie, R O; Minamide, L S; Browning, M D; Bamburg, J R

    1993-08-01

    Actin depolymerizing factor (ADF) is an 18.5-kD protein with pH-dependent reciprocal F-actin binding and severing/depolymerizing activities. We previously showed developing muscle down-regulates ADF (J. R. Bamburg and D. Bray. 1987. J. Cell Biol. 105: 2817-2825). To further study this process, we examined ADF expression in chick myocytes cultured in vitro. Surprisingly, ADF immunoreactivity increases during the first 7-10 d in culture. This increase is due to the presence of a new ADF species with higher relative molecular weight which reacts identically to brain ADF with antisera raised against either brain ADF or recombinant ADF. We have purified both ADF isoforms from myocytes and have shown by peptide mapping and partial sequence analysis that the new isoform is structurally related to ADF. Immunoprecipitation of both isoforms from extracts of cells prelabeled with [32P]orthophosphate showed that the new isoform is radiolabeled, predominantly on a serine residue, and hence is called pADF. pADF can be converted into a form which comigrates with ADF on 1-D and 2-D gels by treatment with alkaline phosphatase. pADF has been quantified in a number of cells and tissues where it is present from approximately 18% to 150% of the amount of unphosphorylated ADF. pADF, unlike ADF, does not bind to G-actin, or affect the rate or extent of actin assembly. Four ubiquitous protein kinases failed to phosphorylate ADF in vitro suggesting that ADF phosphorylation in vivo is catalyzed by a more specific kinase. We conclude that the ability to regulate ADF activity is important to muscle development since myocytes have both pre- and posttranslational mechanisms for regulating ADF activity. The latter mechanism is apparently a general one for cell regulation of ADF activity.

  6. Isolation and characterization of a regulated form of actin depolymerizing factor

    PubMed Central

    1993-01-01

    Actin depolymerizing factor (ADF) is an 18.5-kD protein with pH- dependent reciprocal F-actin binding and severing/depolymerizing activities. We previously showed developing muscle down-regulates ADF (J. R. Bamburg and D. Bray. 1987. J. Cell Biol. 105: 2817-2825). To further study this process, we examined ADF expression in chick myocytes cultured in vitro. Surprisingly, ADF immunoreactivity increases during the first 7-10 d in culture. This increase is due to the presence of a new ADF species with higher relative molecular weight which reacts identically to brain ADF with antisera raised against either brain ADF or recombinant ADF. We have purified both ADF isoforms from myocytes and have shown by peptide mapping and partial sequence analysis that the new isoform is structurally related to ADF. Immunoprecipitation of both isoforms from extracts of cells prelabeled with [32P]orthophosphate showed that the new isoform is radiolabeled, predominantly on a serine residue, and hence is called pADF. pADF can be converted into a form which comigrates with ADF on 1-D and 2-D gels by treatment with alkaline phosphatase. pADF has been quantified in a number of cells and tissues where it is present from approximately 18% to 150% of the amount of unphosphorylated ADF. pADF, unlike ADF, does not bind to G-actin, or affect the rate or extent of actin assembly. Four ubiquitous protein kinases failed to phosphorylate ADF in vitro suggesting that ADF phosphorylation in vivo is catalyzed by a more specific kinase. We conclude that the ability to regulate ADF activity is important to muscle development since myocytes have both pre- and posttranslational mechanisms for regulating ADF activity. The latter mechanism is apparently a general one for cell regulation of ADF activity. PMID:7687605

  7. Dynamin at actin tails.

    PubMed

    Lee, Eunkyung; De Camilli, Pietro

    2002-01-01

    Dynamin, the product of the shibire gene of Drosophila, is a GTPase critically required for endocytosis. Some studies have suggested a functional link between dynamin and the actin cytoskeleton. This link is of special interest, because there is evidence implicating actin dynamics in endocytosis. Here we show that endogenous dynamin 2, as well as green fluorescence protein fusion proteins of both dynamin 1 and 2, is present in actin comets generated by Listeria or by type I PIP kinase (PIPK) overexpression. In PIPK-induced tails, dynamin is further enriched at the interface between the tails and the moving organelles. Dynamin mutants harboring mutations in the GTPase domain inhibited nucleation of actin tails induced by PIPK and moderately reduced their speed. Although dynamin localization to the tails required its proline-rich domain, expression of a dynamin mutant lacking this domain also diminished tail formation. In addition, this mutant disrupted a membrane-associated actin scaffold (podosome rosette) previously shown to include dynamin. These findings suggest that dynamin is part of a protein network that controls nucleation of actin from membranes. At endocytic sites, dynamin may couple the fission reaction to the polymerization of an actin pool that functions in the separation of the endocytic vesicles from the plasma membrane. PMID:11782545

  8. 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.

  9. Electron tomography and simulation of baculovirus actin comet tails support a tethered filament model of pathogen propulsion.

    PubMed

    Mueller, Jan; Pfanzelter, Julia; Winkler, Christoph; Narita, Akihiro; Le Clainche, Christophe; Nemethova, Maria; Carlier, Marie-France; Maeda, Yuichiro; Welch, Matthew D; Ohkawa, Taro; Schmeiser, Christian; Resch, Guenter P; Small, J Victor

    2014-01-01

    Several pathogens induce propulsive actin comet tails in cells they invade to disseminate their infection. They achieve this by recruiting factors for actin nucleation, the Arp2/3 complex, and polymerization regulators from the host cytoplasm. Owing to limited information on the structural organization of actin comets and in particular the spatial arrangement of filaments engaged in propulsion, the underlying mechanism of pathogen movement is currently speculative and controversial. Using electron tomography we have resolved the three-dimensional architecture of actin comet tails propelling baculovirus, the smallest pathogen yet known to hijack the actin motile machinery. Comet tail geometry was also mimicked in mixtures of virus capsids with purified actin and a minimal inventory of actin regulators. We demonstrate that propulsion is based on the assembly of a fishbone-like array of actin filaments organized in subsets linked by branch junctions, with an average of four filaments pushing the virus at any one time. Using an energy-minimizing function we have simulated the structure of actin comet tails as well as the tracks adopted by baculovirus in infected cells in vivo. The results from the simulations rule out gel squeezing models of propulsion and support those in which actin filaments are continuously tethered during branch nucleation and polymerization. Since Listeria monocytogenes, Shigella flexneri, and Vaccinia virus among other pathogens use the same common toolbox of components as baculovirus to move, we suggest they share the same principles of actin organization and mode of propulsion. PMID:24453943

  10. Microtubule-Actin Cross-Linking Factor 1: Domains, Interaction Partners, and Tissue-Specific Functions.

    PubMed

    Goryunov, Dmitry; Liem, Ronald K H

    2016-01-01

    The cytoskeleton of most eukaryotic cells is composed of three principal filamentous components: actin filaments, microtubules (MTs), and intermediate filaments. It is a highly dynamic system that plays crucial roles in a wide range of cellular processes, including migration, adhesion, cytokinesis, morphogenesis, intracellular traffic and signaling, and structural flexibility. Among the large number of cytoskeleton-associated proteins characterized to date, microtubule-actin cross-linking factor 1 (MACF1) is arguably the most versatile integrator and modulator of cytoskeleton-related processes. MACF1 belongs to the plakin family of proteins, and within it, to the spectraplakin subfamily. These proteins are characterized by the ability to bridge MT and actin cytoskeletal networks in a dynamic fashion, which underlies their involvement in the regulation of cell migration, axonal extension, and vesicular traffic. Studying MACF1 functions has provided insights not only into the regulation of the cytoskeleton but also into molecular mechanisms of both normal cellular physiology and cellular pathology. Multiple MACF1 isoforms exist, composed of a large variety of alternatively spliced domains. Each of these domains mediates a specific set of interactions and functions. These functions are manifested in tissue and cell-specific phenotypes observed in conditional MACF1 knockout mice. The conditional models described to date reveal critical roles of MACF1 in mammalian skin, nervous system, heart muscle, and intestinal epithelia. Complete elimination of MACF1 is early embryonic lethal, indicating an essential role for MACF1 in early development. Further studies of MACF1 domains and their interactions will likely reveal multiple new roles of this protein in various tissues.

  11. Xenopus laevis actin-depolymerizing factor/cofilin: a phosphorylation- regulated protein essential for development

    PubMed Central

    1996-01-01

    Two cDNAs, isolated from a Xenopus laevis embryonic library, encode proteins of 168 amino acids, both of which are 77% identical to chick cofilin and 66% identical to chick actin-depolymerizing factor (ADF), two structurally and functionally related proteins. These Xenopus ADF/cofilins (XADs) differ from each other in 12 residues spread throughout the sequence but do not differ in charge. Purified GST- fusion proteins have pH-dependent actin-depolymerizing and F-actin- binding activities similar to chick ADF and cofilin. Similarities in the developmental and tissue specific expression, embryonic localization, and in the cDNA sequence of the noncoding regions, suggest that the two XACs arise from allelic variants of the pseudotetraploid X. laevis. Immunofluorescence localization of XAC in oocyte sections with an XAC-specific monoclonal antibody shows it to be diffuse in the cortical cytoplasm. After fertilization, increased immunostaining is observed in two regions: along the membrane, particularly that of the vegetal hemisphere, and at the interface between the cortical and animal hemisphere cytoplasm. The cleavage furrow and the mid-body structure are stained at the end of first cleavage. Neuroectoderm derived tissues, notochord, somites, and epidermis stain heavily either continuously or transiently from stages 18-34. A phosphorylated form of XAC (pXAC) was identified by 2D Western blotting, and it is the only species found in oocytes. Dephosphorylation of >60% of the pXAC occurs within 30 min after fertilization. Injection of one blastomere at the 2 cell stage, either with constitutively active XAC or with an XAC inhibitory antibody, blocked cleavage of only the injected blastomere in a concentration- dependent manner without inhibiting nuclear division. The cleavage furrow of eggs injected with constitutively active XAC completely regressed. Blastomeres injected with neutralized antibody developed normally. These results suggest that XAC is necessary for

  12. Nck adaptors, besides promoting N-WASP mediated actin-nucleation activity at pedestals, influence the cellular levels of enteropathogenic Escherichia coli Tir effector.

    PubMed

    Nieto-Pelegrin, Elvira; Kenny, Brendan; Martinez-Quiles, Narcisa

    2014-01-01

    Enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (EPEC) binding to human intestinal cells triggers the formation of disease-associated actin rich structures called pedestals. The latter process requires the delivery, via a Type 3 secretion system, of the translocated Intimin receptor (Tir) protein into the host plasma membrane where binding of a host kinase-modified form to the bacterial surface protein Intimin triggers pedestal formation. Tir-Intimin interaction recruits the Nck adaptor to a Tir tyrosine phosphorylated residue where it activates neural Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein (N-WASP); initiating the major pathway to actin polymerization mediated by the actin-related protein (Arp) 2/3 complex. Previous studies with Nck-deficient mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs) identified a key role for Nck in pedestal formation, presumed to reflect a lack of N-WASP activation. Here, we show the defect relates to reduced amounts of Tir within Nck-deficient cells. Indeed, Tir delivery and, thus, pedestal formation defects were much greater for MEFs than HeLa (human epithelial) cells. Crucially, the levels of two other effectors (EspB/EspF) within Nck-deficient MEFs were not reduced unlike that of Map (Mitochondrial associated protein) which, like Tir, requires CesT chaperone function for efficient delivery. Interestingly, drugs blocking various host protein degradation pathways failed to increase Tir cellular levels unlike an inhibitor of deacetylase activity (Trichostatin A; TSA). Treatments with TSA resulted in significant recovery of Tir levels, potentiation of actin polymerization and improvement in bacterial attachment to cells. Our findings have important implications for the current model of Tir-mediated actin polymerization and opens new lines of research in this area. PMID:25482634

  13. Gamma Interferon-Induced Guanylate Binding Protein 1 Is a Novel Actin Cytoskeleton Remodeling Factor

    PubMed Central

    Ostler, Nicole; Britzen-Laurent, Nathalie; Liebl, Andrea; Naschberger, Elisabeth; Lochnit, Günter; Ostler, Markus; Forster, Florian; Kunzelmann, Peter; Ince, Semra; Supper, Verena; Praefcke, Gerrit J. K.; Schubert, Dirk W.; Stockinger, Hannes; Herrmann, Christian

    2014-01-01

    Gamma interferon (IFN-γ) regulates immune defenses against viruses, intracellular pathogens, and tumors by modulating cell proliferation, migration, invasion, and vesicle trafficking processes. The large GTPase guanylate binding protein 1 (GBP-1) is among the cellular proteins that is the most abundantly induced by IFN-γ and mediates its cell biologic effects. As yet, the molecular mechanisms of action of GBP-1 remain unknown. Applying an interaction proteomics approach, we identified actin as a strong and specific binding partner of GBP-1. Furthermore, GBP-1 colocalized with actin at the subcellular level and was both necessary and sufficient for the extensive remodeling of the fibrous actin structure observed in IFN-γ-exposed cells. These effects were dependent on the oligomerization and the GTPase activity of GBP-1. Purified GBP-1 and actin bound to each other, and this interaction was sufficient to impair the formation of actin filaments in vitro, as demonstrated by atomic force microscopy, dynamic light scattering, and fluorescence-monitored polymerization. Cosedimentation and band shift analyses demonstrated that GBP-1 binds robustly to globular actin and slightly to filamentous actin. This indicated that GBP-1 may induce actin remodeling via globular actin sequestering and/or filament capping. These results establish GBP-1 as a novel member within the family of actin-remodeling proteins specifically mediating IFN-γ-dependent defense strategies. PMID:24190970

  14. Regulators of Actin Dynamics in Gastrointestinal Tract Tumors.

    PubMed

    Steinestel, Konrad; Wardelmann, Eva; Hartmann, Wolfgang; Grünewald, Inga

    2015-01-01

    Reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton underlies cell migration in a wide variety of physiological and pathological processes, such as embryonic development, wound healing, and tumor cell invasion. It has been shown that actin assembly and disassembly are precisely regulated by intracellular signaling cascades that respond to changes in the cell microenvironment, ligand binding to surface receptors, or oncogenic transformation of the cell. Actin-nucleating and actin-depolymerizing (ANFs/ADFs) and nucleation-promoting factors (NPFs) regulate cytoskeletal dynamics at the leading edge of migrating cells, thereby modulating cell shape; these proteins facilitate cellular movement and mediate degradation of the surrounding extracellular matrix by secretion of lytic proteases, thus eliminating barriers for tumor cell invasion. Accordingly, expression and activity of these actin-binding proteins have been linked to enhanced metastasis and poor prognosis in a variety of malignancies. In this review, we will summarize what is known about expression patterns and the functional role of actin regulators in gastrointestinal tumors and evaluate first pharmacological approaches to prevent invasion and metastatic dissemination of malignant cells. PMID:26345720

  15. Regulators of Actin Dynamics in Gastrointestinal Tract Tumors

    PubMed Central

    Steinestel, Konrad; Wardelmann, Eva; Hartmann, Wolfgang; Grünewald, Inga

    2015-01-01

    Reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton underlies cell migration in a wide variety of physiological and pathological processes, such as embryonic development, wound healing, and tumor cell invasion. It has been shown that actin assembly and disassembly are precisely regulated by intracellular signaling cascades that respond to changes in the cell microenvironment, ligand binding to surface receptors, or oncogenic transformation of the cell. Actin-nucleating and actin-depolymerizing (ANFs/ADFs) and nucleation-promoting factors (NPFs) regulate cytoskeletal dynamics at the leading edge of migrating cells, thereby modulating cell shape; these proteins facilitate cellular movement and mediate degradation of the surrounding extracellular matrix by secretion of lytic proteases, thus eliminating barriers for tumor cell invasion. Accordingly, expression and activity of these actin-binding proteins have been linked to enhanced metastasis and poor prognosis in a variety of malignancies. In this review, we will summarize what is known about expression patterns and the functional role of actin regulators in gastrointestinal tumors and evaluate first pharmacological approaches to prevent invasion and metastatic dissemination of malignant cells. PMID:26345720

  16. Actinic Keratosis

    MedlinePlus

    ... rashes clinical tools newsletter | contact Share | Actinic Keratosis (Solar Keratosis) Information for adults A A A Actinic ... the touch. Overview Actinic keratoses, also known as solar keratoses, are small rough or scaly areas of ...

  17. In vitro expression of the alpha-smooth muscle actin isoform by rat lung mesenchymal cells: regulation by culture condition and transforming growth factor-beta.

    PubMed

    Mitchell, J J; Woodcock-Mitchell, J L; Perry, L; Zhao, J; Low, R B; Baldor, L; Absher, P M

    1993-07-01

    alpha-Smooth muscle actin (alpha SM actin)-containing cells recently have been demonstrated in intraalveolar lesions in both rat and human tissues following lung injury. In order to develop model systems for the study of such cells, we examined cultured lung cell lines for this phenotype. The adult rat lung fibroblast-like "RL" cell lines were found to express alpha SM actin mRNA and protein and to organize this actin into stress fiber-like structures. Immunocytochemical staining of subclones of the RL87 line demonstrated the presence in the cultures of at least four cell phenotypes, one that fails to express alpha SM actin and three distinct morphologic types that do express alpha SM actin. The proportion of cellular actin that is the alpha-isoform was modulated by the culture conditions. RL cells growing at low density expressed minimal alpha SM actin. On reaching confluent densities, however, alpha SM actin increased to at least 20% of the total actin content. This effect, combined with the observation that the most immunoreactive cells were those that displayed overlapping cell processes in culture, suggests that cell-cell contact may be involved in actin isoform regulation in these cells. Similar to the response of some smooth muscle cell lines, alpha SM actin expression in RL cells also was promoted by conditions, e.g., maintenance in low serum medium, which minimize cell division. alpha SM actin expression was modulated in RL cells by the growth factor transforming growth factor-beta. Addition of this cytokine to growing cells substantially elevated the proportion of alpha SM actin protein.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  18. Hotspots organize clathrin-mediated endocytosis by efficient recruitment and retention of nucleating resources

    PubMed Central

    Nunez, Daniel; Antonescu, Costin; Mettlen, Marcel; Liu, Allen; Schmid, Sandra L.; Loerke, Dinah; Danuser, Gaudenz

    2011-01-01

    The formation of clathrin-coated pits (CCPs) at the plasma membrane has been reported to sometimes occur repeatedly at predefined sites. However, defining such CCP `hotspots' structurally and mechanistically has been difficult due to the dynamic and heterogeneous nature of CCPs. Here we explore the molecular requirements for hotspots using a global assay of CCP dynamics. Our data confirmed that a subset of CCPs is nucleated at spatially distinct sites. The degree of clustering of nucleation events at these sites is dependent on the integrity of cortical actin, and the availability of certain resources, including the adaptor protein AP-2 and the phospholipid PI(4,5)P2. We observe that modulation in the expression of FCHo1 and 2, which have been reported to initiate CCPs, affect only the number of nucleations. Modulation in the expression levels of other accessory proteins, such as SNX9, affects the spatial clustering of CCPs but not the number of nucleations. Based on these findings we distinguish two classes of accessory proteins in clathrin-mediated endocytosis (CME): nucleation factors and nucleation organizers. Finally, we observe that clustering of transferrin receptors spatially randomizes pit nucleation and thus reduces the role of hotspots. Based on these data, we propose that hotspots are specialized cortical actin patches that organize CCP nucleations from within the cell by more efficient recruitment and/or retention of resources required for CCP nucleation partially due to the action of nucleation organizers. PMID:21883765

  19. Factors Affecting the Inclusion Potency for Acicular Ferrite Nucleation in High-Strength Steel Welds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kang, Yongjoon; Jeong, Seonghoon; Kang, Joo-Hee; Lee, Changhee

    2016-06-01

    Factors affecting the inclusion potency for acicular ferrite nucleation in high-strength weld metals were investigated and the contribution of each factor was qualitatively evaluated. Two kinds of weld metals with different hardenabilities were prepared, in both, MnTi2O4-rich spinel formed as the predominant inclusion phase. To evaluate the factors determining the inclusion potency, the inclusion characteristics of size, phase distribution in the multiphase inclusion, orientation relationship with ferrite, and Mn distribution near the inclusion were analyzed. Three factors affecting the ferrite nucleation potency of inclusions were evaluated: the Baker-Nutting (B-N) orientation relationship between ferrite and the inclusion; the formation of an Mn-depleted zone (MDZ) near the inclusion; and the strain energy around the inclusion. Among these, the first two factors were found to be the most important. In addition, it was concluded that the increased chemical driving force brought about by the formation of an MDZ contributed more to the formation of acicular ferrite in higher-strength weld metals, because the B-N orientation relationship between ferrite and the inclusion was less likely to form as the transformation temperature decreased.

  20. DNA-binding site for two skeletal actin promoter factors is important for expression in muscle cells

    SciTech Connect

    Walsh, K.; Schimmel, P.

    1988-04-01

    Two nuclear factors bind to the same site in the chicken skeletal actin promoter. Mutations in the footprint sequence which eliminate detectable binding decrease expression in transfected skeletal muscle cells by a factor of 25 to 50 and do not elevate the flow expression in nonmuscle cells. These results show that the factor-binding site contributes to the activation of expression in muscle cells and that it alone does not contribute significantly to repress expression in nonmuscle cells.

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

    PubMed

    Banigan, Edward J; Lee, Kun-Chun; Liu, Andrea J

    2013-12-01

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

  2. Filament Assembly by Spire: Key Residues and Concerted Actin Binding

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

    The most recently identified class of actin nucleators, WASp Homology domain 2 (WH2) – nucleators, use tandem repeats of monomeric actin-binding WH2 domains to facilitate actin nucleation. WH2 domains are involved in a wide variety of actin regulatory activities. Structurally, they are expected to clash with interprotomer contacts within the actin filament. Thus, the discovery of their role in nucleation was surprising. Here we use Drosophila Spire (Spir) as a model system to investigate both how tandem WH2 domains can nucleate actin and what differentiates nucleating WH2-containing proteins from their non-nucleating counterparts. We found that the third WH2 domain in Spir (Spir-C or Sc), plays a unique role. In the context of a short nucleation construct (containing only two WH2 domains), placement of Sc in the N-terminal position was required for the most potent nucleation. We found that the native organization of the WH2 domains with respect to each other is necessary for binding to actin with positive cooperativity. We identified two residues within Sc that are critical for its activity. Using this information we were able to convert a weak synthetic nucleator into one with activity equal to a native Spir construct. Lastly, we found evidence that Sc binds actin filaments, in addition to monomers. PMID:25234086

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-02-27

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

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

    PubMed

    Block, Jennifer; Breitsprecher, Dennis; Kühn, Sonja; Winterhoff, Moritz; Kage, Frieda; Geffers, Robert; Duwe, Patrick; Rohn, Jennifer L; Baum, Buzz; Brakebusch, Cord; Geyer, Matthias; Stradal, Theresia E B; Faix, Jan; Rottner, Klemens

    2012-06-01

    Cell migration entails protrusion of lamellipodia, densely packed networks of actin filaments at the cell front. Filaments are generated by nucleation, likely mediated by Arp2/3 complex and its activator Scar/WAVE. It is unclear whether formins contribute to lamellipodial actin filament nucleation or serve as elongators of filaments nucleated by Arp2/3 complex. Here we show that the Diaphanous-related formin FMNL2, also known as FRL3 or FHOD2, accumulates at lamellipodia and filopodia tips. FMNL2 is cotranslationally modified by myristoylation and regulated by interaction with the Rho-guanosine triphosphatase Cdc42. Abolition of myristoylation or Cdc42 binding interferes with proper FMNL2 activation, constituting an essential prerequisite for subcellular targeting. In vitro, C-terminal FMNL2 drives elongation rather than nucleation of actin filaments in the presence of profilin. In addition, filament ends generated by Arp2/3-mediated branching are captured and efficiently elongated by the formin. Consistent with these biochemical properties, RNAi-mediated silencing of FMNL2 expression decreases the rate of lamellipodia protrusion and, accordingly, the efficiency of cell migration. Our data establish that the FMNL subfamily member FMNL2 is a novel elongation factor of actin filaments that constitutes the first Cdc42 effector promoting cell migration and actin polymerization at the tips of lamellipodia. PMID:22608513

  5. BENT UPPERMOST INTERNODE1 Encodes the Class II Formin FH5 Crucial for Actin Organization and Rice Development[W][OA

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Weibing; Ren, Sulin; Zhang, Xiaoming; Gao, Mingjun; Ye, Shenghai; Qi, Yongbin; Zheng, Yiyan; Wang, Juan; Zeng, Longjun; Li, Qun; Huang, Shanjin; He, Zuhua

    2011-01-01

    The actin cytoskeleton is an important regulator of cell expansion and morphogenesis in plants. However, the molecular mechanisms linking the actin cytoskeleton to these processes remain largely unknown. Here, we report the functional analysis of rice (Oryza sativa) FH5/BENT UPPERMOST INTERNODE1 (BUI1), which encodes a formin-type actin nucleation factor and affects cell expansion and plant morphogenesis in rice. The bui1 mutant displayed pleiotropic phenotypes, including bent uppermost internode, dwarfism, wavy panicle rachis, and enhanced gravitropic response. Cytological observation indicated that the growth defects of bui1 were caused mainly by inhibition of cell expansion. Map-based cloning revealed that BUI1 encodes the class II formin FH5. FH5 contains a phosphatase tensin-like domain at its amino terminus and two highly conserved formin-homology domains, FH1 and FH2. In vitro biochemical analyses indicated that FH5 is capable of nucleating actin assembly from free or profilin-bound monomeric actin. FH5 also interacts with the barbed end of actin filaments and prevents the addition and loss of actin subunits from the same end. Interestingly, the FH2 domain of FH5 could bundle actin filaments directly and stabilize actin filaments in vitro. Consistent with these in vitro biochemical activities of FH5/BUI1, the amount of filamentous actin decreased, and the longitudinal actin cables almost disappeared in bui1 cells. The FH2 or FH1FH2 domains of FH5 could also bind to and bundle microtubules in vitro. Thus, our study identified a rice formin protein that regulates de novo actin nucleation and spatial organization of the actin filaments, which are important for proper cell expansion and rice morphogenesis. PMID:21307285

  6. IDENTIFICATION OF NOVEL FIBROBLAST GROWTH FACTOR RECEPTOR 3 GENE MUTATIONS IN ACTINIC CHEILITIS

    PubMed Central

    Chou, Annie; Dekker, Nusi; Jordan, Richard C.K.

    2009-01-01

    Objective Activating mutations in the fibroblast growth factor receptor 3 (FGFR3) gene are responsible for several craniosynostosis and chondrodysplasia syndromes as well as some human cancers including bladder and cervical carcinoma. Despite a high frequency in some benign skin disorders, FGFR3 mutations have not been reported in cutaneous malignancies. Actinic cheilitis (AC) is a sun-induced premalignancy affecting the lower lip that frequently progresses to squamous cell carcinoma (SCC). The objective of this study was to determine if FGFR3 gene mutations are present in AC and SCC of the lip. Study Design DNA was extracted and purified from micro-dissected, formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded tissue sections of 20 cases of AC and SCC arising in AC. Exons 7, 15, and 17 were PCR amplified and direct sequenced. Results Four novel somatic mutations in the FGFR3 gene were identified: exon 7 mutation 742C→T (amino acid change R248C), exon 15 mutations 1850A→G (D617G) and 1888G→A (V630M), and exon 17 mutation 2056G→A (E686K). Grade of dysplasia did not correlate with presence of mutations. Conclusion The frequency of FGFR3 receptor mutations suggests a functional role for the FGFR3 receptor in the development of epithelial disorders and perhaps a change may contribute to the pathogenesis of some AC and SCC. PMID:19327639

  7. 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.

  8. Exo70 Stimulates the Arp2/3 Complex-mediated Actin Branching for Lamellipodia Formation and Cell Migration

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Jianglan; Zhao, Yuting; Sun, Yujie; He, Bing; Yang, Changsong; Svitkina, Tatyana; Goldman, Yale E.; Guo, Wei

    2012-01-01

    Summary Directional cell migration requires the coordination of actin assembly and membrane remodeling. The exocyst is an octameric protein complex essential for exocytosis and plasma membrane remodeling [1,2]. A component of the exocyst, Exo70, directly interacts with the Arp2/3 complex, a core nucleating factor for the generation of branched actin networks for cell morphogenesis and migration [3-9]. Using in vitro actin polymerization assay and time-lapse TIRF microscopy, we found Exo70 functions as a kinetic activator of the Arp2/3 complex that promotes actin filament nucleation and branching. We further found that the effect of Exo70 on actin is mediated by promoting the interaction of Arp2/3 complex with WAVE2, a member of the N-WASP/WAVE family of nucleation promoting factors (NPFs). At the cellular level, the stimulatory effect of Exo70 on Arp2/3 is required for lamellipodia formation and maintaining directional persistence of cell migration. Our findings provide a novel mechanism for regulating actin polymerization and branching for effective membrane protrusion during cell morphogenesis and migration. PMID:22748316

  9. CRP2, a new invadopodia actin bundling factor critically promotes breast cancer cell invasion and metastasis

    PubMed Central

    Dieterle, Monika; Moreau, Flora; Al Absi, Antoun; Steinmetz, André; Oudin, Anaïs; Berchem, Guy; Janji, Bassam; Thomas, Clément

    2016-01-01

    A critical process underlying cancer metastasis is the acquisition by tumor cells of an invasive phenotype. At the subcellular level, invasion is facilitated by actin-rich protrusions termed invadopodia, which direct extracellular matrix (ECM) degradation. Here, we report the identification of a new cytoskeletal component of breast cancer cell invadopodia, namely cysteine-rich protein 2 (CRP2). We found that CRP2 was not or only weakly expressed in epithelial breast cancer cells whereas it was up-regulated in mesenchymal/invasive breast cancer cells. In addition, high expression of the CRP2 encoding gene CSRP2 was associated with significantly increased risk of metastasis in basal-like breast cancer patients. CRP2 knockdown significantly reduced the invasive potential of aggressive breast cancer cells, whereas it did not impair 2D cell migration. In keeping with this, CRP2-depleted breast cancer cells exhibited a reduced capacity to promote ECM degradation, and to secrete and express MMP-9, a matrix metalloproteinase repeatedly associated with cancer progression and metastasis. In turn, ectopic expression of CRP2 in weakly invasive cells was sufficient to stimulate cell invasion. Both GFP-fused and endogenous CRP2 localized to the extended actin core of invadopodia, a structure primarily made of actin bundles. Purified recombinant CRP2 autonomously crosslinked actin filaments into thick bundles, suggesting that CRP2 contributes to the formation/maintenance of the actin core. Finally, CRP2 depletion significantly reduced the incidence of lung metastatic lesions in two xenograft mouse models of breast cancer. Collectively, our data identify CRP2 as a new cytoskeletal component of invadopodia that critically promotes breast cancer cell invasion and metastasis. PMID:26883198

  10. Phylogenetic Patterns of Codon Evolution in the ACTIN-DEPOLYMERIZING FACTOR/COFILIN (ADF/CFL) Gene Family

    PubMed Central

    Roy-Zokan, Eileen M.; Dyer, Kelly A.; Meagher, Richard B.

    2015-01-01

    The actin-depolymerizing factor/cofilin (ADF/CFL) gene family encodes a diverse group of relatively small proteins. Once known strictly as modulators of actin filament dynamics, recent research has demonstrated that these proteins are involved in a variety of cellular processes, from signal transduction to the cytonuclear trafficking of actin. In both plant and animal lineages, expression patterns of paralogs in the ADF/CFL gene family vary among tissue types and developmental stages. In this study we use computational approaches to investigate the evolutionary forces responsible for the diversification of the ADF/CFL gene family. Estimating the rate of non-synonymous to synonymous mutations (dN/dS) across phylogenetic lineages revealed that the majority of ADF/CFL codon positions were under strong purifying selection, with rare episodic events of accelerated protein evolution. In both plants and animals these instances of accelerated evolution were ADF/CFL subclass specific, and all of the sites under selection were located in regions of the protein that could serve in new functional roles. We suggest these sites may have been important in the functional diversification of ADF/CFL proteins. PMID:26717562

  11. Characterizing protein crystal nucleation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Akella, Sathish V.

    We developed an experimental microfluidic based technique to measure the nucleation rates and successfully applied the technique to measure nucleation rates of lysozyme crystals. The technique involves counting the number of samples which do not have crystals as a function of time. Under the assumption that nucleation is a Poisson process, the fraction of samples with no crystals decays exponentially with the decay constant proportional to nucleation rate and volume of the sample. Since nucleation is a random and rare event, one needs to perform measurements on large number of samples to obtain good statistics. Microfluidics offers the solution of producing large number of samples at minimal material consumption. Hence, we developed a microfluidic method and measured nucleation rates of lysozyme crystals in supersaturated protein drops, each with volume of ˜ 1 nL. Classical Nucleation Theory (CNT) describes the kinetics of nucleation and predicts the functional form of nucleation rate in terms of the thermodynamic quantities involved, such as supersaturation, temperature, etc. We analyzed the measured nucleation rates in the context of CNT and obtained the activation energy and the kinetic pre-factor characterizing the nucleation process. One conclusion is that heterogeneous nucleation dominates crystallization. We report preliminary studies on selective enhancement of nucleation in one of the crystal polymorprhs of lysozyme (spherulite) using amorphous mesoporous bioactive gel-glass te{naomi06, naomi08}, CaO.P 2O5.SiO2 (known as bio-glass) with 2-10 nm pore-size diameter distribution. The pores act as heterogeneous nucleation centers and claimed to enhance the nucleation rates by molecular confinement. The measured kinetic profiles of crystal fraction of spherulites indicate that the crystallization of spherulites may be proceeding via secondary nucleation pathways.

  12. Reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton via transcriptional regulation of cytoskeletal/focal adhesion genes by myocardin-related transcription factors (MRTFs/MAL/MKLs)

    SciTech Connect

    Morita, Tsuyoshi; Mayanagi, Taira; Sobue, Kenji

    2007-10-01

    RhoA is a crucial regulator of stress fiber and focal adhesion formation through the activation of actin nucleation and polymerization. It also regulates the nuclear translocation of myocardin-related transcription factor-A and -B (MRTF-A/B, MAL or MKL 1/2), which are co-activators of serum response factor (SRF). In dominant-negative MRTF-A (DN-MRTF-A)-expressing NIH 3T3 cell lines, the expressions of several cytoskeletal/focal adhesion genes were down-regulated, and the formation of stress fiber and focal adhesion was severely diminished. MRTF-A/B-knockdown cells also exhibited such cytoskeletal defects. In reporter assays, both RhoA and MRTF-A enhanced promoter activities of these genes in a CArG-box-dependent manner, and DN-MRTF-A inhibited the RhoA-mediated activation of these promoters. In dominant-negative RhoA (RhoA-N19)-expressing NIH 3T3 cell lines, the nuclear translocation of MRTF-A/B was predominantly prevented, resulting in the reduced expression of cytoskeletal/focal adhesion proteins. Further, constitutive-active MRTF-A/B increased the expression of endogenous cytoskeletal/focal adhesion proteins, and thereby rescued the defective phenotype of stress fibers and focal adhesions in RhoA-N19 expressing cells. These results indicate that MRTF-A/B act as pivotal mediators of stress fiber and focal adhesion formation via the transcriptional regulation of a subset of cytoskeletal/focal adhesion genes.

  13. [Actinic Keratosis].

    PubMed

    Dejaco, D; Hauser, U; Zelger, B; Riechelmann, H

    2015-07-01

    Actinic keratosis is a cutaneous lesion characterized by proliferation of atypical epidermal keratinocytes due to prolonged exposure to exogenous factors such as ultraviolet radiation. AKs are in-situ-squamous cell carcinomas (PEC) of the skin. AK typically presents as erythematous, scaly patch or papule (classic AK), occasionally as thick, adherent scale on an erythematous base. Mostly fair-skinned adults are affected. AKs typically occur in areas of frequent sun exposure (balding scalp, face, "H-region", lateral neck, décolleté, dorsum of the hand and lower extremities). Actinic Cheilitis is the term used for AKs appearing on the lips. The diagnosis of AK is based on clinical examination including inspection and palpation. The typical palpable rough surface of AK often precedes a visible lesion. Dermoscopy may provide additional information. If diagnosis is uncertain and invasion suspected, biopsy and histopathologic evaluation should be performed. The potential for progression to invasive PECs mandates therapeutic intervention. Treatment options include topical and systemic therapies. Topical therapies are classified into physical, medical and combined physical-chemical approaches and a sequential combination of treatment modalities is possible. Topical-physical cryotherapy is the treatment of choice for isolated, non-hypertrophic AK. Topical-medical treatment, e. g. 5-fluoruracil (5FU) cream or Imiquomod or Ingenolmebutat application is used for multiple, non-hypertrophic AKs. For hypertrophic AKs, a dehorning pretreatment with salicinated vaseline is recommended. Isolated hypertrophic AKs often need cryotherapy with prolonged freezing time or several consecutive applications. Sequentially combined approaches are recommended for multiple, hypertrophic AKs. Photodynamic therapy (PDT) as example for a combined physical-chemical approach is an established treatment for multiple, non-hypertrophic and hypertrophic AKs. Prevention includes avoidance of sun and

  14. Calcium influx through CRAC channels controls actin organization and dynamics at the immune synapse

    PubMed Central

    Hartzell, Catherine A; Jankowska, Katarzyna I; Burkhardt, Janis K; Lewis, Richard S

    2016-01-01

    T cell receptor (TCR) engagement opens Ca2+ release-activated Ca2+ (CRAC) channels and triggers formation of an immune synapse between T cells and antigen-presenting cells. At the synapse, actin reorganizes into a concentric lamellipod and lamella with retrograde actin flow that helps regulate the intensity and duration of TCR signaling. We find that Ca2+ influx is required to drive actin organization and dynamics at the synapse. Calcium acts by promoting actin depolymerization and localizing actin polymerization and the actin nucleation promotion factor WAVE2 to the periphery of the lamellipod while suppressing polymerization elsewhere. Ca2+-dependent retrograde actin flow corrals ER tubule extensions and STIM1/Orai1 complexes to the synapse center, creating a self-organizing process for CRAC channel localization. Our results demonstrate a new role for Ca2+ as a critical regulator of actin organization and dynamics at the synapse, and reveal potential feedback loops through which Ca2+ influx may modulate TCR signaling. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.14850.001 PMID:27440222

  15. Actinic keratosis

    MedlinePlus

    Solar keratosis; Sun-induced skin changes - keratosis; Keratosis - actinic (solar) ... Actinic keratosis is caused by exposure to sunlight. You are more likely to develop it if you: Have fair skin, blue or green eyes, or blond or red hair Had a ...

  16. The WAVE Regulatory Complex Links Diverse Receptors to the Actin Cytoskeleton

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Baoyu; Chen, Zhucheng; Brinkmann, Klaus; Pak, Chi W.; Liao, Yuxing; Shi, Shuoyong; Henry, Lisa; Grishin, Nick V.; Bogdan, Sven; Rosen, Michael K.

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY The WAVE regulatory complex (WRC) controls actin cytoskeletal dynamics throughout the cell by stimulating the actin nucleating activity of the Arp2/3 complex at distinct membrane sites. However, the factors that recruit the WRC to specific locations remain poorly understood. Here we have identified a large family of potential WRC ligands, consisting of ~120 diverse membrane proteins including protocadherins, ROBOs, netrin receptors, Neuroligins, GPCRs and channels. Structural, biochemical and cellular studies reveal that a novel sequence motif that defines these ligands binds to a highly conserved interaction surface of the WRC formed by the Sra and Abi subunits. Mutating this binding surface in flies resulted in defects in actin cytoskeletal organization and egg morphology during oogenesis, leading to female sterility. Our findings directly link diverse membrane proteins to the WRC and actin cytoskeleton, and have broad physiological and pathological ramifications in metazoans. PMID:24439376

  17. 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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-08-15

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2012-08-01

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

  20. The Nf-actin gene is an important factor for food-cup formation and cytotoxicity of pathogenic Naegleria fowleri.

    PubMed

    Sohn, Hae-Jin; Kim, Jong-Hyun; Shin, Myeong-Heon; Song, Kyoung-Ju; Shin, Ho-Joon

    2010-03-01

    Naegleria fowleri destroys target cells by trogocytosis, a phagocytosis mechanism, and a process of piecemeal ingestion of target cells by food-cups. Phagocytosis is an actin-dependent process that involves polymerization of monomeric G-actin into filamentous F-actin. However, despite the numerous studies concerning phagocytosis, its role in the N. fowleri food-cup formation related with trogocytosis has been poorly reported. In this study, we cloned and characterized an Nf-actin gene to elucidate the role of Nf-actin gene in N. fowleri pathogenesis. The Nf-actin gene is composed of 1,128-bp and produced a 54.1-kDa recombinant protein (Nf-actin). The sequence identity was 82% with nonpathogenic Naegleria gruberi but has no sequence identity with other mammals or human actin gene. Anti-Nf-actin polyclonal antibody was produced in BALB/c mice immunized with recombinant Nf-actin. The Nf-actin was localized on the cytoplasm, pseudopodia, and especially, food-cup structure (amoebastome) in N. fowleri trophozoites using immunofluorescence assay. When N. fowleri co-cultured with Chinese hamster ovary cells, Nf-actin was observed to localize around on phagocytic food-cups. We also observed that N. fowleri treated with cytochalasin D as actin polymerization inhibitor or transfected with antisense oligomer of Nf-actin gene had shown the reduced ability of food-cup formation and in vitro cytotoxicity. Finally, it suggests that Nf-actin plays an important role in phagocytic activity of pathogenic N. fowleri.

  1. A focal adhesion factor directly linking intracellularly motile Listeria monocytogenes and Listeria ivanovii to the actin-based cytoskeleton of mammalian cells.

    PubMed

    Chakraborty, T; Ebel, F; Domann, E; Niebuhr, K; Gerstel, B; Pistor, S; Temm-Grove, C J; Jockusch, B M; Reinhard, M; Walter, U

    1995-04-01

    The surface-bound ActA polypeptide of the intracellular bacterial pathogen Listeria monocytogenes is the sole listerial factor needed for recruitment of host actin filaments by intracellularly motile bacteria. Here we report that following Listeria infection the host vasodilator-stimulated phosphoprotein (VASP), a microfilament- and focal adhesion-associated substrate of both the cAMP- and cGMP-dependent protein kinases, accumulates on the surface of intracytoplasmic bacteria prior to the detection of F-actin 'clouds'. VASP remains associated with the surface of highly motile bacteria, where it is polarly located, juxtaposed between one extremity of the bacterial surface and the front of the actin comet tail. Since actin filament polymerization occurs only at the very front of the tail, VASP exhibits properties of a host protein required to promote actin polymerization. Purified VASP binds directly to the ActA polypeptide in vitro. A ligand-overlay blot using purified radiolabelled VASP enabled us to identify the ActA homologue of the related intracellular motile pathogen, Listeria ivanovii, as a protein with a molecular mass of approximately 150 kDa. VASP also associates with actin filaments recruited by another intracellularly motile bacterial pathogen, Shigella flexneri. Hence, by the simple expedient of expressing surface-bound attractor molecules, bacterial pathogens effectively harness cytoskeletal components to achieve intracellular movement.

  2. Isolation of a strawberry gene fragment encoding an actin depolymerizing factor-like protein from genotypes resistant to Colletotrichum acutatum.

    PubMed

    Ontivero, Marta; Zamora, Gustavo Martínez; Salazar, Sergio; Ricci, Juan Carlos Díaz; Castagnaro, Atilio Pedro

    2011-12-01

    Actin depolymerizing factors (ADFs) have been recently implicated in plant defense against pathogenic fungi, associated with the cytoskeletal rearrangements that contribute to establish an effective barrier against fungal ingress. In this work, we identified a DNA fragment corresponding to a part of a gene predicted to encode an ADF-like protein in genotypes of Fragaria ananassa resistant to the fungus Colletotrichum acutatum. Bulked segregant analysis combined with AFLP was used to identify polymorphisms linked to resistance in hybrids derived from the cross between the resistant cultivar 'Sweet Charlie' and the susceptible cultivar 'Pájaro'. The sequence of one out of three polymorphic bands detected showed significant BLASTX hits to ADF proteins from other plants. Two possible exons were identified and bioinformatic analysis revealed the presence of the ADF homology domain with two actin-binding sites, an N-terminal phosphorylation site, and a nuclear localization signal. In addition to its possible application in strawberry breeding programs, these finding may contribute to investigate the role of ADFs in plant resistance against fungi. PMID:22107362

  3. Actinic Cheilitis

    MedlinePlus

    ... is a precancerous condition related to cumulative lifetime sun exposure. The lower lip is most often affected. Individuals ... Wearing barrier clothing (eg, wide-brimmed hats) and sunscreen-containing lip balms can aid in preventing actinic ...

  4. 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

  5. Mechanics of Biomimetic Liposomes Encapsulating an Actin Shell.

    PubMed

    Guevorkian, Karine; Manzi, John; Pontani, Léa-Lætitia; Brochard-Wyart, Françoise; Sykes, Cécile

    2015-12-15

    Cell-shape changes are insured by a thin, dynamic, cortical layer of cytoskeleton underneath the plasma membrane. How this thin cortical structure impacts the mechanical properties of the whole cell is not fully understood. Here, we study the mechanics of liposomes or giant unilamellar vesicles, when a biomimetic actin cortex is grown at the inner layer of the lipid membrane via actin-nucleation-promoting factors. Using a hydrodynamic tube-pulling technique, we show that tube dynamics is clearly affected by the presence of an actin shell anchored to the lipid bilayer. The same force pulls much shorter tubes in the presence of the actin shell compared to bare membranes. However, in both cases, we observe that the dynamics of tube extrusion has two distinct features characteristic of viscoelastic materials: rapid elastic elongation, followed by a slower elongation phase at a constant rate. We interpret the initial elastic regime by an increase of membrane tension due to the loss of lipids into the tube. Tube length is considerably shorter for cortex liposomes at comparable pulling forces, resulting in a higher spring constant. The presence of the actin shell seems to restrict lipid mobility, as is observed in the corral effect in cells. The viscous regime for bare liposomes corresponds to a leakout of the internal liquid at constant membrane tension. The presence of the actin shell leads to a larger friction coefficient. As the tube is pulled from a patchy surface, membrane tension increases locally, leading to a Marangoni flow of lipids. As a conclusion, the presence of an actin shell is revealed by its action that alters membrane mechanics.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

    Actin filament nucleation and branching by Arp2/3 complex is activated by nucleation-promoting factors (NPFs), whose C-terminal WCA region contains binding sites for actin (W) and Arp2/3 complex (CA). It is debated whether one or two NPFs are required for activation. Here, we present conclusive evidence in support of the two-NPF model and show that actin plays a crucial role in the interactions of two mammalian NPFs, N-WASP and WAVE2, with Arp2/3 complex. Competition between actin-WCA and glia maturation factor (GMF) for binding to Arp2/3 complex suggests that during activation the first actin monomer binds at the barbed end of Arp2. Based on distance constrains obtained by time-resolved fluorescence resonance energy transfer, we define the relative position of the two actin-WCAs on Arp2/3 complex and propose an atomic model of the 11-subunit transitional complex. PMID:24518936

  7. Analysis of the human cofilin 1 structure reveals conformational changes required for actin binding

    PubMed Central

    Klejnot, Marta; Gabrielsen, Mads; Cameron, Jenifer; Mleczak, Andrzej; Talapatra, Sandeep K.; Kozielski, Frank; Pannifer, Andrew; Olson, Michael F.

    2013-01-01

    The actin cytoskeleton is the chassis that gives a cell its shape and structure, and supplies the power for numerous dynamic processes including motility, endocytosis, intracellular transport and division. To perform these activities, the cytoskeleton undergoes constant remodelling and reorganization. One of the major actin-remodelling families are the cofilin proteins, made up of cofilin 1, cofilin 2 and actin-depolymerizing factor (ADF), which sever aged ADP-associated actin filaments to reduce filament length and provide new potential nucleation sites. Despite the significant interest in cofilin as a central node in actin-cytoskeleton dynamics, to date the only forms of cofilin for which crystal structures have been solved are from the yeast, Chromalveolata and plant kingdoms; none have previously been reported for an animal cofilin protein. Two distinct regions in animal cofilin are significantly larger than in the forms previously crystallized, suggesting that they would be uniquely organized. Therefore, it was sought to determine the structure of human cofilin 1 by X-ray crystallography to elucidate how it could interact with and regulate dynamic actin-cytoskeletal structures. Although wild-type human cofilin 1 proved to be recalcitrant, a C147A point mutant yielded crystals that diffracted to 2.8 Å resolution. These studies revealed how the actin-binding helix undergoes a conformational change that increases the number of potential hydrogen bonds available for substrate binding. PMID:23999301

  8. Polarized Exocytosis Induces Compensatory Endocytosis by Sec4p-Regulated Cortical Actin Polymerization

    PubMed Central

    Johansen, Jesper; Alfaro, Gabriel; Beh, Christopher T.

    2016-01-01

    Polarized growth is maintained by both polarized exocytosis, which transports membrane components to specific locations on the cell cortex, and endocytosis, which retrieves these components before they can diffuse away. Despite functional links between these two transport pathways, they are generally considered to be separate events. Using live cell imaging, in vivo and in vitro protein binding assays, and in vitro pyrene-actin polymerization assays, we show that the yeast Rab GTPase Sec4p couples polarized exocytosis with cortical actin polymerization, which induces endocytosis. After polarized exocytosis to the plasma membrane, Sec4p binds Las17/Bee1p (yeast Wiskott—Aldrich Syndrome protein [WASp]) in a complex with Sla1p and Sla2p during actin patch assembly. Mutations that inactivate Sec4p, or its guanine nucleotide exchange factor (GEF) Sec2p, inhibit actin patch formation, whereas the activating sec4-Q79L mutation accelerates patch assembly. In vitro assays of Arp2/3-dependent actin polymerization established that GTPγS-Sec4p overrides Sla1p inhibition of Las17p-dependent actin nucleation. These results support a model in which Sec4p relocates along the plasma membrane from polarized sites of exocytic vesicle fusion to nascent sites of endocytosis. Activated Sec4p then promotes actin polymerization and triggers compensatory endocytosis, which controls surface expansion and kinetically refines cell polarization. PMID:27526190

  9. Coordination of Actin- and Microtubule-Based Cytoskeletons Supports Transport of Spermatids and Residual Bodies/Phagosomes During Spermatogenesis in the Rat Testis.

    PubMed

    Tang, Elizabeth I; Lee, Will M; Cheng, C Yan

    2016-04-01

    Germ cell transport across the seminiferous epithelium during spermatogenesis requires the intricate coordination of cell junctions, signaling proteins, and both actin- and microtubule (MT)-based cytoskeletons. Although the involvement of cytoskeletons in germ cell transport has been suggested, the precise mechanism(s) remains elusive. Based on growing evidence that actin and MT interactions underlie fundamental cellular processes, such as cell motility, it is unlikely that actin- and MT-based cytoskeletons work independently to regulate germ cell transport in the testis. Using rats treated with adjudin, a potential male contraceptive that disrupts spermatid adhesion and transport in the testis, as a study model, we show herein that actin- and MT-based cytoskeletons are both necessary for transport of spermatids and residual bodies/phagosomes across the seminiferous epithelium in adult rat testes. Analysis of intratubular expression of F-actin and tubulin revealed disruption of both actin and MT networks, concomitant with misdirected spermatids and phagosomes in rats treated with adjudin. Actin regulatory proteins, epidermal growth factor receptor pathway substrate 8 and actin-related protein 3, were mislocalized and down-regulated at the actin-rich anchoring junction between germ and Sertoli cells (apical ectoplasmic specialization) after adjudin treatment. Nonreceptor tyrosine kinase p-FAK-Tyr(407), known to regulate F-actin nucleation via actin-related protein 3, was also mislocalized and down-regulated at the apical ectoplasmic specialization, corroborating the observation of actin cytoskeleton disruption. Additionally, spatiotemporal expression of MT regulatory protein end-binding protein 1, shown to be involved in MT-actin cross talk herein, was also disrupted after adjudin treatment. In summary, spermatid/phagosome transport across the epithelium during spermatogenesis requires the coordination between actin- and MT-based cytoskeletons.

  10. Dynamics of condensate formation in stochastic transport with pair-factorized steady states: Nucleation and coarsening time scales.

    PubMed

    Nagel, Hannes; Janke, Wolfhard

    2016-05-01

    Driven diffusive systems such as the zero-range process (ZRP) and the pair-factorized steady states (PFSS) stochastic transport process are versatile tools that lend themselves to the study of transport phenomena on a generic level. While their mathematical structure is simple enough to allow significant analytical treatment, they offer a variety of interesting phenomena. With appropriate dynamics, the ZRP and PFSS models feature a condensation transition where, for a supercritical density, the translational symmetry breaks spontaneously and excess particles form a single-site or spatially extended condensate, respectively. In this paper we numerically study the typical time scales of the two stages of this condensation process: Nucleation and coarsening. Nucleation is the first stage of condensation where the bulk system relaxes to its stationary distribution and droplet nuclei form in the system. These droplets then gradually grow or evaporate in the coarsening regime to coalesce in a single condensate when the system finally relaxes to the stationary state. We use the ZRP condensation model to discuss the choice of the estimation method for the nucleation time scale and present scaling exponents for the ZRP and PFSS condensation models with respect to the choice of the typical droplet nuclei mass. We then proceed to present scaling exponents in the coarsening regime of the ZRP for partially asymmetric dynamics and the PFSS model for symmetric and asymmetric dynamics. PMID:27300835

  11. Dynamics of condensate formation in stochastic transport with pair-factorized steady states: Nucleation and coarsening time scales

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nagel, Hannes; Janke, Wolfhard

    2016-05-01

    Driven diffusive systems such as the zero-range process (ZRP) and the pair-factorized steady states (PFSS) stochastic transport process are versatile tools that lend themselves to the study of transport phenomena on a generic level. While their mathematical structure is simple enough to allow significant analytical treatment, they offer a variety of interesting phenomena. With appropriate dynamics, the ZRP and PFSS models feature a condensation transition where, for a supercritical density, the translational symmetry breaks spontaneously and excess particles form a single-site or spatially extended condensate, respectively. In this paper we numerically study the typical time scales of the two stages of this condensation process: Nucleation and coarsening. Nucleation is the first stage of condensation where the bulk system relaxes to its stationary distribution and droplet nuclei form in the system. These droplets then gradually grow or evaporate in the coarsening regime to coalesce in a single condensate when the system finally relaxes to the stationary state. We use the ZRP condensation model to discuss the choice of the estimation method for the nucleation time scale and present scaling exponents for the ZRP and PFSS condensation models with respect to the choice of the typical droplet nuclei mass. We then proceed to present scaling exponents in the coarsening regime of the ZRP for partially asymmetric dynamics and the PFSS model for symmetric and asymmetric dynamics.

  12. Cortactin involvement in the keratinocyte growth factor and fibroblast growth factor 10 promotion of migration and cortical actin assembly in human keratinocytes

    SciTech Connect

    Ceccarelli, Simona; Cardinali, Giorgia; Aspite, Nicaela; Picardo, Mauro; Marchese, Cinzia; Torrisi, Maria Rosaria; Mancini, Patrizia . E-mail: patrizia.mancini@uniroma1.it

    2007-05-15

    Keratinocyte growth factor (KGF/FGF7) and fibroblast growth factor 10 (FGF10/KGF2) regulate keratinocyte proliferation and differentiation by binding to the tyrosine kinase KGF receptor (KGFR). KGF induces keratinocyte motility and cytoskeletal rearrangement, whereas a direct role of FGF10 on keratinocyte migration is not clearly established. Here we analyzed the motogenic activity of FGF10 and KGF on human keratinocytes. Migration assays and immunofluorescence of actin cytoskeleton revealed that FGF10 is less efficient than KGF in promoting migration and exerts a delayed effect in inducing lamellipodia and ruffles formation. Both growth factors promoted phosphorylation and subsequent membrane translocation of cortactin, an F-actin binding protein involved in cell migration; however, FGF10-induced cortactin phosphorylation was reduced, more transient and delayed with respect to that promoted by KGF. Cortactin phosphorylation induced by both growth factors was Src-dependent, while its membrane translocation and cell migration were blocked by either Src and PI3K inhibitors, suggesting that both pathways are involved in KGF- and FGF10-dependent motility. Furthermore, siRNA-mediated downregulation of cortactin inhibited KGF- and FGF10-induced migration. These results indicate that cortactin is involved in keratinocyte migration promoted by both KGF and FGF10.

  13. MicroRNA-584 and the Protein Phosphatase and Actin Regulator 1 (PHACTR1), a New Signaling Route through Which Transforming Growth Factor-β Mediates the Migration and Actin Dynamics of Breast Cancer Cells*

    PubMed Central

    Fils-Aimé, Nadège; Dai, Meiou; Guo, Jimin; El-Mousawi, Mayada; Kahramangil, Bora; Neel, Jean-Charles; Lebrun, Jean-Jacques

    2013-01-01

    TGF-β plays an important role in breast cancer progression as a prometastatic factor, notably through enhancement of cell migration. It is becoming clear that microRNAs, a new class of small regulatory molecules, also play crucial roles in mediating tumor formation and progression. We found TGF-β to down-regulate the expression of the microRNA miR-584 in breast cancer cells. Furthermore, we identified PHACTR1, an actin-binding protein, to be positively regulated by TGF-β in a miR-584-dependent manner. Moreover, we found TGF-β-mediated down-regulation of miR-584 and increased expression of PHACTR1 to be required for TGF-β-induced cell migration of breast cancer cells. Indeed, both overexpression of miR-584 and knockdown of PHACTR1 resulted in a drastic reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton and reduced TGF-β-induced cell migration. Our data highlight a novel signaling route whereby TGF-β silences the expression of miR-584, resulting in enhanced PHACTR1 expression, and further leading to actin rearrangement and breast cancer cell migration. PMID:23479725

  14. Identification of Actin-Binding Proteins from Maize Pollen

    SciTech Connect

    Staiger, C.J.

    2004-01-13

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

  15. A supracellular system of actin-lined canals controls biogenesis and release of virulence factors in parasitoid venom glands.

    PubMed

    Ferrarese, Roberto; Morales, Jorge; Fimiarz, Daniel; Webb, Bruce A; Govind, Shubha

    2009-07-01

    Parasitoid wasps produce virulence factors that bear significant resemblance to viruses and have the ability to block host defense responses. The function of these virulence factors, produced predominantly in wasp venom glands, and the ways in which they interfere with host development and physiology remain mysterious. Here, we report the discovery of a specialized system of canals in venom glands of five parasitoid wasps that differ in their infection strategies. This supracellular canal system is made up of individual secretory units, one per secretory cell. Individual units merge into the canal lumen. The membrane surface of the proximal end of each canal within the secretory cell assumes brush border morphology, lined with bundles of F-actin. Systemic administration of cytochalasin D compromises the integrity of the secretory unit. We show a dynamic and continuous association of p40, a protein of virus-like particles from a Drosophila parasitoid, L. heterotoma, with the canal and venom gland lumen. Similar structures in three Leptopilina species and Ganaspis xanthopoda, parasitoids of Drosophila spp., and Campoletis sonorenesis, a parasitoid of Heliothis virescens, suggest that this novel supracellular canal system is likely to be a common trait of parasitoid venom glands that is essential for efficient biogenesis and delivery of virulence factors. PMID:19561216

  16. A supracellular system of actin-lined canals controls biogenesis and release of virulence factors in parasitoid venom glands

    PubMed Central

    Ferrarese, Roberto; Morales, Jorge; Fimiarz, Daniel; Webb, Bruce A.; Govind, Shubha

    2009-01-01

    Summary Parasitoid wasps produce virulence factors that bear significant resemblance to viruses and have the ability to block host defense responses. The function of these virulence factors, produced predominantly in wasp venom glands, and the ways in which they interfere with host development and physiology remain mysterious. Here, we report the discovery of a specialized system of canals in venom glands of five parasitoid wasps that differ in their infection strategies. This supracellular canal system is made up of individual secretory units, one per secretory cell. Individual units merge into the canal lumen. The membrane surface of the proximal end of each canal within the secretory cell assumes brush border morphology, lined with bundles of F-actin. Systemic administration of cytochalasin D compromises the integrity of the secretory unit. We show a dynamic and continuous association of p40, a protein of virus-like particles from a Drosophila parasitoid, L. heterotoma, with the canal and venom gland lumen. Similar structures in three Leptopilina species and Ganaspis xanthopoda, parasitoids of Drosophila spp., and Campoletis sonorenesis, a parasitoid of Heliothis virescens, suggest that this novel supracellular canal system is likely to be a common trait of parasitoid venom glands that is essential for efficient biogenesis and delivery of virulence factors. PMID:19561216

  17. Live imaging provides new insights on dynamic F-actin filopodia and differential endocytosis during myoblast fusion in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Haralalka, Shruti; Shelton, Claude; Cartwright, Heather N; Guo, Fengli; Trimble, Rhonda; Kumar, Ram P; Abmayr, Susan M

    2014-01-01

    The process of myogenesis includes the recognition, adhesion, and fusion of committed myoblasts into multinucleate syncytia. In the larval body wall muscles of Drosophila, this elaborate process is initiated by Founder Cells and Fusion-Competent Myoblasts (FCMs), and cell adhesion molecules Kin-of-IrreC (Kirre) and Sticks-and-stones (Sns) on their respective surfaces. The FCMs appear to provide the driving force for fusion, via the assembly of protrusions associated with branched F-actin and the WASp, SCAR and Arp2/3 pathways. In the present study, we utilize the dorsal pharyngeal musculature that forms in the Drosophila embryo as a model to explore myoblast fusion and visualize the fusion process in live embryos. These muscles rely on the same cell types and genes as the body wall muscles, but are amenable to live imaging since they do not undergo extensive morphogenetic movement during formation. Time-lapse imaging with F-actin and membrane markers revealed dynamic FCM-associated actin-enriched protrusions that rapidly extend and retract into the myotube from different sites within the actin focus. Ultrastructural analysis of this actin-enriched area showed that they have two morphologically distinct structures: wider invasions and/or narrow filopodia that contain long linear filaments. Consistent with this, formin Diaphanous (Dia) and branched actin nucleator, Arp3, are found decorating the filopodia or enriched at the actin focus, respectively, indicating that linear actin is present along with branched actin at sites of fusion in the FCM. Gain-of-function Dia and loss-of-function Arp3 both lead to fusion defects, a decrease of F-actin foci and prominent filopodia from the FCMs. We also observed differential endocytosis of cell surface components at sites of fusion, with actin reorganizing factors, WASp and SCAR, and Kirre remaining on the myotube surface and Sns preferentially taken up with other membrane proteins into early endosomes and lysosomes in the

  18. Computational model of polarized actin cables and cytokinetic actin ring formation in budding yeast

    PubMed Central

    Tang, Haosu; Bidone, Tamara C.

    2015-01-01

    The budding yeast actin cables and contractile ring are important for polarized growth and division, revealing basic aspects of cytoskeletal function. To study these formin-nucleated structures, we built a 3D computational model with actin filaments represented as beads connected by springs. Polymerization by formins at the bud tip and bud neck, crosslinking, severing, and myosin pulling, are included. Parameter values were estimated from prior experiments. The model generates actin cable structures and dynamics similar to those of wild type and formin deletion mutant cells. Simulations with increased polymerization rate result in long, wavy cables. Simulated pulling by type V myosin stretches actin cables. Increasing the affinity of actin filaments for the bud neck together with reduced myosin V pulling promotes the formation of a bundle of antiparallel filaments at the bud neck, which we suggest as a model for the assembly of actin filaments to the contractile ring. PMID:26538307

  19. Phosphorylation of actin-depolymerizing factor/cofilin by LIM-kinase mediates amyloid beta-induced degeneration: a potential mechanism of neuronal dystrophy in Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Heredia, Lorena; Helguera, Pablo; de Olmos, Soledad; Kedikian, Gabriela; Solá Vigo, Francisco; LaFerla, Frank; Staufenbiel, Matthias; de Olmos, José; Busciglio, Jorge; Cáceres, Alfredo; Lorenzo, Alfredo

    2006-06-14

    Deposition of fibrillar amyloid beta (fAbeta) plays a critical role in Alzheimer's disease (AD). We have shown recently that fAbeta-induced dystrophy requires the activation of focal adhesion proteins and the formation of aberrant focal adhesion structures, suggesting the activation of a mechanism of maladaptative plasticity in AD. Focal adhesions are actin-based structures that provide a structural link between the extracellular matrix and the cytoskeleton. To gain additional insight in the molecular mechanism of neuronal degeneration in AD, here we explored the involvement of LIM kinase 1 (LIMK1), actin-depolymerizing factor (ADF), and cofilin in Abeta-induced dystrophy. ADF/cofilin are actin-binding proteins that play a central role in actin filament dynamics, and LIMK1 is the kinase that phosphorylates and thereby inhibits ADF/cofilin. Our data indicate that treatment of hippocampal neurons with fAbeta increases the level of Ser3-phosphorylated ADF/cofilin and Thr508-phosphorylated LIMK1 (P-LIMK1), accompanied by a dramatic remodeling of actin filaments, neuritic dystrophy, and neuronal cell death. A synthetic peptide, S3 peptide, which acts as a specific competitor for ADF/cofilin phosphorylation by LIMK1, inhibited fAbeta-induced ADF/cofilin phosphorylation, preventing actin filament remodeling and neuronal degeneration, indicating the involvement of LIMK1 in Abeta-induced neuronal degeneration in vitro. Immunofluorescence analysis of AD brain showed a significant increase in the number of P-LIMK1-positive neurons in areas affected with AD pathology. P-LIMK1-positive neurons also showed early signs of AD pathology, such as intracellular Abeta and pretangle phosphorylated tau. Thus, LIMK1 activation may play a key role in AD pathology. PMID:16775141

  20. 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

    2012-06-01

    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.

  1. Spatial control of actin polymerization during neutrophil chemotaxis

    PubMed Central

    Weiner, Orion D.; Servant, Guy; Welch, Matthew D.; Mitchison, Timothy J.; Sedat, John W.; Bourne, Henry R.

    2010-01-01

    Neutrophils respond to chemotactic stimuli by increasing the nucleation and polymerization of actin filaments, but the location and regulation of these processes are not well understood. Here, using a permeabilized-cell assay, we show that chemotactic stimuli cause neutrophils to organize many discrete sites of actin polymerization, the distribution of which is biased by external chemotactic gradients. Furthermore, the Arp2/3 complex, which can nucleate actin polymerization, dynamically redistributes to the region of living neutrophils that receives maximal chemotactic stimulation, and the least-extractable pool of the Arp2/3 complex co-localizes with sites of actin polymerization. Our observations indicate that chemoattractant-stimulated neutrophils may establish discrete foci of actin polymerization that are similar to those generated at the posterior surface of the intracellular bacterium Listeria monocytogenes. We propose that asymmetrical establishment and/or maintenance of sites of actin polymerization produces directional migration of neutrophils in response to chemotactic gradients. PMID:10559877

  2. Cross-reactivity of antibodies to actin- depolymerizing factor/cofilin family proteins and identification of the major epitope recognized by a mammalian actin-depolymerizing factor/cofilin antibody.

    PubMed

    Shaw, Alisa E; Minamide, Laurie S; Bill, Christine L; Funk, Janel D; Maiti, Sankar; Bamburg, James R

    2004-08-01

    Members of the actin-depolymerizing factor (ADF)/cofilin family of proteins are expressed in all eukaryotic cells. In higher vertebrates, cells often express as many as three different ADF/cofilin genes and each of these proteins may be phosphorylated on serine 3, giving rise to up to six different species. Also, many avian, amphibian, and invertebrate systems have been useful in studying different aspects of ADF/cofilin function. Antibodies have been prepared against different members of the ADF/cofilin family, but no systematic examination of their cross-reactivity has been reported. Although ADF and cofilins within a single vertebrate species have about a 70% sequence homology, antibodies often differentiate between these proteins. Here, Western blotting was used with chemiluminescence substrates of different sensitivities to determine the relative immunoreactivities of different polyclonal rabbit antibodies and a mouse monoclonal antibody to purified ADF/cofilins from plants, protists, nematodes, insects, echinoderms, birds, and mammals. From immunocross-reactivities and sequence alignments, the principal epitope in mammalian ADF and cofilin-1 recognized by an antibody raised against avian ADF was identified. The specificity of an antibody to the phosphopeptide epitope of metazoan ADF/cofilins was confirmed by two-dimensional (2-D) immunoblot analysis. Futhermore, this bank of antibodies was used to identify by Western blotting a putative member of the ADF/cofilin family in the sea slug, Aplysia californica.

  3. Actinic Keratoses

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Marc D.

    2009-01-01

    Actinic keratoses are common intra-epidermal neoplasms that lie on a continuum with squamous cell carcinoma. Tightly linked to ultraviolet irradiation, they occur in areas of chronic sun exposure, and early treatment of these lesions may prevent their progression to invasive disease. A large variety of effective treatment modalities exist, and the optimal therapeutic choice is dependent on a variety of patient- and physician-associated variables. Many established and more recent approaches are discussed in this review with a focus on efficacy and administration techniques. Several previously experimental options, such as imiquimod and photodynamic therapy, have become incorporated as first-line options for the treatment of actinic keratoses, while combination treatment strategies have been gaining in popularity. The goal of all therapies is to ultimately limit the morbidity and mortality of squamous cell carcinoma. (J Clin Aesthetic Dermatol. 2009;2(7):43–48.) PMID:20729970

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-09-15

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

  6. Fascin regulates nuclear actin during Drosophila oogenesis.

    PubMed

    Kelpsch, Daniel J; Groen, Christopher M; Fagan, Tiffany N; Sudhir, Sweta; Tootle, Tina L

    2016-10-01

    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.

  7. Fascin regulates nuclear actin during Drosophila oogenesis.

    PubMed

    Kelpsch, Daniel J; Groen, Christopher M; Fagan, Tiffany N; Sudhir, Sweta; Tootle, Tina L

    2016-10-01

    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

  8. Duplication in the microtubule-actin cross-linking factor 1 gene causes a novel neuromuscular condition.

    PubMed

    Jørgensen, Louise H; Mosbech, Mai-Britt; Færgeman, Nils J; Graakjaer, Jesper; Jacobsen, Søren V; Schrøder, Henrik D

    2014-06-05

    Spectrins and plakins are important communicators linking cytoskeletal components to each other and to cellular junctions. Microtubule-actin cross-linking factor 1 (MACF1) belongs to the spectraplakin family and is involved in control of microtubule dynamics. Complete knock out of MACF1 in mice is associated with developmental retardation and embryonic lethality. Here we present a family with a novel neuromuscular condition. Genetic analyses show a heterozygous duplication resulting in reduced MACF1 gene product. The functional consequence is affected motility observed as periodic hypotonia, lax muscles and diminished motor skills, with heterogeneous presentation among the affected family members. To corroborate these findings we used RNA interference to knock down the VAB-10 locus containing the MACF1 homologue in C. elegans, and we could show that this also causes movement disturbances. These findings suggest that changes in the MACF1 gene is implicated in this neuromuscular condition, which is an important observation since MACF1 has not previously been associated with any human disease and thus presents a key to understanding the essential nature of this gene.

  9. Heterogeneous nucleation or homogeneous nucleation?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, X. Y.

    2000-06-01

    The generic heterogeneous effect of foreign particles on three dimensional nucleation was examined both theoretically and experimentally. It shows that the nucleation observed under normal conditions includes a sequence of progressive heterogeneous processes, characterized by different interfacial correlation function f(m,x)s. At low supersaturations, nucleation will be controlled by the process with a small interfacial correlation function f(m,x), which results from a strong interaction and good structural match between the foreign bodies and the crystallizing phase. At high supersaturations, nucleation on foreign particles having a weak interaction and poor structural match with the crystallizing phase (f(m,x)→1) will govern the kinetics. This frequently leads to the false identification of homogeneous nucleation. Genuine homogeneous nucleation, which is the up-limit of heterogeneous nucleation, may not be easily achievable under gravity. In order to check these results, the prediction is confronted with nucleation experiments of some organic and inorganic crystals. The results are in excellent agreement with the theory.

  10. Actin-dependent propulsion of endosomes and lysosomes byrecruitment of n-wasp

    SciTech Connect

    Taunton J; Rowning BA; Coughlin ML; Wu M; Moon RT; Mitchison TJ; Larabell CA

    2000-02-07

    We examined the spatial and temporal control of actin assembly in living Xenopus eggs. Within minutes of egg activation,dynamic actin-rich comet tails appeared on a subset of cytoplasmic vesicles that were enriched in protein kinase C (PKC), causing the vesicles to move through the cytoplasm. Actin comet tail formation in vivo was stimulated by the PKC activator phorbol myristate acetate (PMA),and this process could be reconstituted in a cell-free system. We used this system to define the characteristics that distinguish vesicles associated with actin comet tails from other vesicles in the extract. We found that the protein, N-WASP, was recruited to the surface of every vesicle associated with an actin comet tail, suggesting that vesicle movement results from actin assembly nucleated by the Arp2/3 complex, the immediate downstream target of N-WASP, The motile vesicles accumulated the dye acridine orange, a marker for endosomes and lysosomes. Furthermore, vesicles associated with actin comet tails had the morphological features of multivesicular endosomes as revealed by electron microscopy. Endosomes and lysosomes from mammalian cells preferentially nucleated actin assembly and moved in the Xenopus egg extract system. These results define endosomes and lysosomes as recruitment sites for the actin nucleation machinery and demonstrate that actin assembly contributes to organelle movement. Conversely, by nucleating actin assembly, intracellular membranes may contribute to the dynamic organization of the actin cytoskeleton.

  11. 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

  12. Persistence of betapapillomavirus infections as a risk factor for actinic keratoses, precursor to cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma.

    PubMed

    Plasmeijer, Elsemieke I; Neale, Rachel E; de Koning, Maurits N C; Quint, Wim G V; McBride, Penelope; Feltkamp, Mariet C W; Green, Adele C

    2009-12-01

    Human papillomaviruses from the beta genus (betaPV) are a possible cause of cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (SCC). We assessed the extent to which betaPV infections persisted long-term in a subtropical Australian community and whether betaPV persistence is positively associated with actinic keratoses, precursor for SCC. Eyebrow hairs were collected from 171 participants of the community-based Nambour Skin Cancer Study in 1996 and 2003. Hair samples were tested for the presence of DNA from 25 different betaPV types and assessed in relation to actinic keratosis presence in 2007. In 1996, a total of 413 betaPV infections were found in 73% of participants, increasing to 490 infections among 85% in 2003. Of the total betaPV infections detected, 211 (30%) were found to persist. Age was significantly associated with betaPV persistence: those ages >60 years had 1.5-fold (95% confidence interval, 1.1-1.9) increased risk of type-specific viral persistence than those ages <40 years. After accounting for actinic keratoses at baseline, persistence of betaPV DNA resulted in a 1.4-fold (95% confidence interval, 1.0-1.9) increase in risk of having actinic keratoses on the face in 2007. In conclusion, persistent betaPV infections in this population were associated with an increased occurrence of actinic keratosis. Additional studies are needed to determine the possible association of betaPV persistence with SCC.

  13. Conserved factor Dhp1/Rat1/Xrn2 triggers premature transcription termination and nucleates heterochromatin to promote gene silencing

    PubMed Central

    Chalamcharla, Venkata R.; Folco, H. Diego; Dhakshnamoorthy, Jothy; Grewal, Shiv I. S.

    2015-01-01

    Cotranscriptional RNA processing and surveillance factors mediate heterochromatin formation in diverse eukaryotes. In fission yeast, RNAi machinery and RNA elimination factors including the Mtl1–Red1 core and the exosome are involved in facultative heterochromatin assembly; however, the exact mechanisms remain unclear. Here we show that RNA elimination factors cooperate with the conserved exoribonuclease Dhp1/Rat1/Xrn2, which couples pre-mRNA 3′-end processing to transcription termination, to promote premature termination and facultative heterochromatin formation at meiotic genes. We also find that Dhp1 is critical for RNAi-mediated heterochromatin assembly at retroelements and regulated gene loci and facilitates the formation of constitutive heterochromatin at centromeric and mating-type loci. Remarkably, our results reveal that Dhp1 interacts with the Clr4/Suv39h methyltransferase complex and acts directly to nucleate heterochromatin. Our work uncovers a previously unidentified role for 3′-end processing and transcription termination machinery in gene silencing through premature termination and suggests that noncanonical transcription termination by Dhp1 and RNA elimination factors is linked to heterochromatin assembly. These findings have important implications for understanding silencing mechanisms targeting genes and repeat elements in higher eukaryotes. PMID:26631744

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Mechano-chemical energy transduction in biological systems. The effect of mechanical stimulation on the polymerization of actin: a kinetic study.

    PubMed Central

    Ferri, A; Grazi, E

    1982-01-01

    Mechanical stimulation (forced circulation in narrow tubing) accelerates as much as 10-fold the rate of polymerization of actin. The increase in the rate is proportional to the intensity of the stimulation for flow rates between 0 and 3 cm/s. This supports the hypothesis that a statistical factor (the orientation of the flowing particles) is influenced by the flow. Comparison of the kinetics of the polymerization of resting and of mechanically stimulated actin solutions shows that both the nucleation and the elongation steps are accelerated. It is thus concluded that flow orients not only the oligomeric structures but also the actin monomers. The elongation reaction, also in the flow-stimulated samples, occurs always by the addition of ATP--G-actin (or ATP-containing oligomers) and not by the fusion of ADP-containing oligomeric structures. PMID:7138502

  17. Cavitation nucleation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Crum, Lawrence A.

    2001-05-01

    For his dissertation research at Harvard, Bob Apfel chose the subject of homogeneous nucleation, and conceived of some ingenious experiments to test existing theories. By selecting a small microdroplet of liquid, he could make the reasonable assumption that no inhomogeneities were present to serve as preferential sites for liquid rupture. However, Bob also studied dirty liquids, as well as very clean ones, and wrote some seminal papers on inhomogeneous nucleation, in which he developed the Golden rule: Know thy liquid! Currently, considerable attention has been devoted to the study of cavitation generation in vivo, particularly in blood, and, for this case, the nucleation conditions are much different than those for normal liquids. In this presentation, I will review some of Bob's pioneering studies and present some of our latest studies of cavitation inception, both in vitro and in vivo.

  18. Vault-poly-ADP-ribose polymerase in the Octopus vulgaris brain: a regulatory factor of actin polymerization dynamic.

    PubMed

    De Maio, Anna; Natale, Emiliana; Rotondo, Sergio; Di Cosmo, Anna; Faraone-Mennella, Maria Rosaria

    2013-09-01

    Our previous behavioural, biochemical and immunohistochemical analyses conducted in selected regions (supra/sub oesophageal masses) of the Octopus vulgaris brain detected a cytoplasmic poly-ADP-ribose polymerase (more than 90% of total enzyme activity). The protein was identified as the vault-free form of vault-poly-ADP-ribose polymerase. The present research extends and integrates the biochemical characterization of poly-ADP-ribosylation system, namely, reaction product, i.e., poly-ADP-ribose, and acceptor proteins, in the O. vulgaris brain. Immunochemical analyses evidenced that the sole poly-ADP-ribose acceptor was the octopus cytoskeleton 50-kDa actin. It was present in both free, endogenously poly-ADP-ribosylated form (70kDa) and in complex with V-poly-ADP-ribose polymerase and poly-ADP-ribose (260kDa). The components of this complex, alkali and high salt sensitive, were purified and characterized. The kind and the length of poly-ADP-ribose corresponded to linear chains of 30-35 ADP-ribose units, in accordance with the features of the polymer synthesized by the known vault-poly-ADP-ribose polymerase. In vitro experiments showed that V-poly-ADP-ribose polymerase activity of brain cytoplasmic fraction containing endogenous actin increased upon the addition of commercial actin and was highly reduced by ATP. Anti-actin immunoblot of the mixture in the presence and absence of ATP showed that the poly-ADP-ribosylation of octopus actin is a dynamic process balanced by the ATP-dependent polymerization of the cytoskeleton protein, a fundamental mechanism for synaptic plasticity.

  19. A stable transcription factor complex nucleated by oligomeric AML1–ETO controls leukaemogenesis

    SciTech Connect

    Sun, Xiao-Jian; Wang, Zhanxin; Wang, Lan; Jiang, Yanwen; Kost, Nils; Soong, T. David; Chen, Wei-Yi; Tang, Zhanyun; Nakadai, Tomoyoshi; Elemento, Olivier; Fischle, Wolfgang; Melnick, Ari; Patel, Dinshaw J.; Nimer, Stephen D.; Roeder, Robert G.

    2013-06-30

    Transcription factors are frequently altered in leukaemia through chromosomal translocation, mutation or aberrant expression. AML1–ETO, a fusion protein generated by the t(8;21) translocation in acute myeloid leukaemia, is a transcription factor implicated in both gene repression and activation. AML1–ETO oligomerization, mediated by the NHR2 domain, is critical for leukaemogenesis, making it important to identify co-regulatory factors that ‘read’ the NHR2 oligomerization and contribute to leukaemogenesis. Here we show that, in human leukaemic cells, AML1–ETO resides in and functions through a stable AML1–ETO-containing transcription factor complex (AETFC) that contains several haematopoietic transcription (co)factors. These AETFC components stabilize the complex through multivalent interactions, provide multiple DNA-binding domains for diverse target genes, co-localize genome wide, cooperatively regulate gene expression, and contribute to leukaemogenesis. Within the AETFC complex, AML1–ETO oligomerization is required for a specific interaction between the oligomerized NHR2 domain and a novel NHR2-binding (N2B) motif in E proteins. Crystallographic analysis of the NHR2–N2B complex reveals a unique interaction pattern in which an N2B peptide makes direct contact with side chains of two NHR2 domains as a dimer, providing a novel model of how dimeric/oligomeric transcription factors create a new protein-binding interface through dimerization/oligomerization. Intriguingly, disruption of this interaction by point mutations abrogates AML1–ETO-induced haematopoietic stem/progenitor cell self-renewal and leukaemogenesis. These results reveal new mechanisms of action of AML1–ETO, and provide a potential therapeutic target in t(8;21)-positive acute myeloid leukaemia.

  20. De novo actin polymerization is required for model Hirano body formation in Dictyostelium

    PubMed Central

    Dong, Yun; Shahid-Salles, Sonbol; Sherling, Dan; Fechheimer, Nathan; Iyer, Nathan; Wells, Lance; Fechheimer, Marcus

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Hirano bodies are eosinophilic, actin-rich inclusions found in autopsied brains in numerous neurodegenerative diseases. The mechanism of Hirano body formation is unknown. Mass spectrometry analysis was performed to identify proteins from partially purified model Hirano bodies from Dictyostelium. This analysis identified proteins primarily belonging to ribosomes, proteasomes, mitochondria and cytoskeleton. Profilin, Arp/2/3 and WASH identified by mass spectrometry were found to colocalise with model Hirano bodies. Due to their roles in actin regulation, we selected these proteins for further investigation. Inhibition of the Arp2/3 complex by CK666 prevented formation of model Hirano bodies. Since Arp2/3 activation occurs via the WASH or WAVE complex, we next investigated how these proteins affect Hirano body formation. Whereas model Hirano bodies could form in WASH-deficient cells, they failed to form in cells lacking HSPC300, a member of the WAVE complex. We identified other proteins required for Hirano body formation that include profilin and VASP, an actin nucleation factor. In the case of VASP, both its G- and F-actin binding domains were required for model Hirano body formation. Collectively, our results indicate that de novo actin polymerization is required to form model Hirano bodies. PMID:27215322

  1. A stable transcription factor complex nucleated by oligomeric AML1-ETO controls leukaemogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Xiao-Jian; Wang, Zhanxin; Wang, Lan; Jiang, Yanwen; Kost, Nils; Soong, T. David; Chen, Wei-Yi; Tang, Zhanyun; Nakadai, Tomoyoshi; Elemento, Olivier; Fischle, Wolfgang; Melnick, Ari; Patel, Dinshaw J.; Nimer, Stephen D.; Roeder, Robert G.

    2013-01-01

    Transcription factors are frequently altered in leukaemia through chromosomal translocation, mutation or aberrant expression1. AML1-ETO, a fusion protein generated by the t(8;21) translocation in acute myeloid leukaemia (AML), is a transcription factor implicated in both gene repression and activation2. AML1-ETO oligomerization, mediated by the NHR2 domain, is critical for leukaemogenesis3–6, making it important to identify coregulatory factors that “read” the NHR2 oligomerization and contribute to leukaemogenesis4. We now show that, in leukaemic cells, AML1-ETO resides in and functions through a stable protein complex (AETFC) that contains several haematopoietic transcription (co)factors. These AETFC components stabilize the complex through multivalent interactions, provide multiple DNA-binding domains for diverse target genes, colocalize genome-wide, cooperatively regulate gene expression, and contribute to leukaemogenesis. Within the AETFC complex, AML1-ETO oligomerization is required for a specific interaction between the oligomerized NHR2 domain and a novel NHR2-binding (N2B) motif in E proteins. Crystallographic analysis of the NHR2-N2B complex reveals a unique interaction pattern in which an N2B peptide makes direct contact with side chains of two NHR2 domains as a dimer, providing a novel model of how dimeric/oligomeric transcription factors create a new protein-binding interface through dimerization/oligomerization. Intriguingly, disruption of this interaction by point mutations abrogates AML1-ETO–induced haematopoietic stem/progenitor cell self-renewal and leukaemogenesis. These results reveal new mechanisms of action of AML1-ETO and a potential therapeutic target in t(8;21)+ AML. PMID:23812588

  2. On Capillary Rise and Nucleation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Prasad, R.

    2008-01-01

    A comparison of capillary rise and nucleation is presented. It is shown that both phenomena result from a balance between two competing energy factors: a volume energy and a surface energy. Such a comparison may help to introduce nucleation with a topic familiar to the students, capillary rise. (Contains 1 table and 3 figures.)

  3. State-dependent diffusion of actin-depolymerizing factor/cofilin underlies the enlargement and shrinkage of dendritic spines

    PubMed Central

    Noguchi, Jun; Hayama, Tatsuya; Watanabe, Satoshi; Ucar, Hasan; Yagishita, Sho; Takahashi, Noriko; Kasai, Haruo

    2016-01-01

    Dendritic spines are the postsynaptic sites of most excitatory synapses in the brain, and spine enlargement and shrinkage give rise to long-term potentiation and depression of synapses, respectively. Because spine structural plasticity is accompanied by remodeling of actin scaffolds, we hypothesized that the filamentous actin regulatory protein cofilin plays a crucial role in this process. Here we investigated the diffusional properties of cofilin, the actin-severing and depolymerizing actions of which are activated by dephosphorylation. Cofilin diffusion was measured using fluorescently labeled cofilin fusion proteins and two-photon imaging. We show that cofilins are highly diffusible along dendrites in the resting state. However, during spine enlargement, wild-type cofilin and a phosphomimetic cofilin mutant remain confined to the stimulated spine, whereas a nonphosphorylatable mutant does not. Moreover, inhibition of cofilin phosphorylation with a competitive peptide disables spine enlargement, suggesting that phosphorylated-cofilin accumulation is a key regulator of enlargement, which is localized to individual spines. Conversely, spine shrinkage spreads to neighboring spines, even though triggered by weaker stimuli than enlargement. Diffusion of exogenous cofilin injected into a pyramidal neuron soma causes spine shrinkage and reduced PSD95 in spines, suggesting that diffusion of dephosphorylated endogenous cofilin underlies the spreading of spine shrinkage and long-term depression. PMID:27595610

  4. State-dependent diffusion of actin-depolymerizing factor/cofilin underlies the enlargement and shrinkage of dendritic spines.

    PubMed

    Noguchi, Jun; Hayama, Tatsuya; Watanabe, Satoshi; Ucar, Hasan; Yagishita, Sho; Takahashi, Noriko; Kasai, Haruo

    2016-01-01

    Dendritic spines are the postsynaptic sites of most excitatory synapses in the brain, and spine enlargement and shrinkage give rise to long-term potentiation and depression of synapses, respectively. Because spine structural plasticity is accompanied by remodeling of actin scaffolds, we hypothesized that the filamentous actin regulatory protein cofilin plays a crucial role in this process. Here we investigated the diffusional properties of cofilin, the actin-severing and depolymerizing actions of which are activated by dephosphorylation. Cofilin diffusion was measured using fluorescently labeled cofilin fusion proteins and two-photon imaging. We show that cofilins are highly diffusible along dendrites in the resting state. However, during spine enlargement, wild-type cofilin and a phosphomimetic cofilin mutant remain confined to the stimulated spine, whereas a nonphosphorylatable mutant does not. Moreover, inhibition of cofilin phosphorylation with a competitive peptide disables spine enlargement, suggesting that phosphorylated-cofilin accumulation is a key regulator of enlargement, which is localized to individual spines. Conversely, spine shrinkage spreads to neighboring spines, even though triggered by weaker stimuli than enlargement. Diffusion of exogenous cofilin injected into a pyramidal neuron soma causes spine shrinkage and reduced PSD95 in spines, suggesting that diffusion of dephosphorylated endogenous cofilin underlies the spreading of spine shrinkage and long-term depression. PMID:27595610

  5. Nuclear Function of Subclass I Actin-Depolymerizing Factor Contributes to Susceptibility in Arabidopsis to an Adapted Powdery Mildew Fungus1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Inada, Noriko; Higaki, Takumi; Hasezawa, Seiichiro

    2016-01-01

    Actin-depolymerizing factors (ADFs) are conserved proteins that function in regulating the structure and dynamics of actin microfilaments in eukaryotes. In this study, we present evidence that Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) subclass I ADFs, particularly ADF4, functions as a susceptibility factor for an adapted powdery mildew fungus. The null mutant of ADF4 significantly increased resistance against the adapted powdery mildew fungus Golovinomyces orontii. The degree of resistance was further enhanced in transgenic plants in which the expression of all subclass I ADFs (i.e. ADF1–ADF4) was suppressed. Microscopic observations revealed that the enhanced resistance of adf4 and ADF1-4 knockdown plants (ADF1-4Ri) was associated with the accumulation of hydrogen peroxide and cell death specific to G. orontii-infected cells. The increased resistance and accumulation of hydrogen peroxide in ADF1-4Ri were suppressed by the introduction of mutations in the salicylic acid- and jasmonic acid-signaling pathways but not by a mutation in the ethylene-signaling pathway. Quantification by microscopic images detected an increase in the level of actin microfilament bundling in ADF1-4Ri but not in adf4 at early G. orontii infection time points. Interestingly, complementation analysis revealed that nuclear localization of ADF4 was crucial for susceptibility to G. orontii. Based on its G. orontii-infected-cell-specific phenotype, we suggest that subclass I ADFs are susceptibility factors that function in a direct interaction between the host plant and the powdery mildew fungus. PMID:26747284

  6. CArG boxes in the human cardiac. cap alpha. -actin gene are core binding sites for positive trans-acting regulatory factors

    SciTech Connect

    Miwa, T.; Boxer, L.M.; Kedes, L.

    1987-10-01

    Positively acting, rate-limiting regulatory factors that influence tissue-specific expression of the human cardiac ..cap alpha..-actin gene in a mouse muscle cell line are shown by in vivo competition and gel mobility-shift assays to bind to upstream regions of its promoter but to neither vector DNA not a ..beta..-globin promoter. Although the two binding regions are distinctly separated, each corresponds to a cis region required for muscle-specific transcriptional stimulation, and each contains a core CC(A+T-rich)/sub 6/GC sequence (designated CArG box), which is found in the promoter regions of several muscle-associated genes. Each site has an apparently different binding affinity for trans-acting factors, which may explain the different transcriptional stimulation activities of the two cis regions. Therefore, the authors conclude that the two CArG box regions are responsible for muscle-specific transcriptional activity of the cardiac ..cap alpha..-actin gene through a mechanism that involves their binding of a positive trans-acting factor in muscle cells.

  7. Downregulation of the DNA repair enzyme apurinic/apyrimidinic endonuclease 1 stimulates transforming growth factor-β1 production and promotes actin rearrangement.

    PubMed

    Sakai, Yuri; Yamamori, Tohru; Yasui, Hironobu; Inanami, Osamu

    2015-05-22

    The DNA repair enzyme apurinic/apyrimidinic endonuclease 1 (APE1) plays a central role in base excision repair and functions as a reductive activator of various transcription factors. Multiple other functionalities have been ascribed to APE1 in addition to these major functions. A recent study showed that APE1 knockdown upregulated the expression of a set of genes related to extracellular matrix (ECM) production, indicating an additional novel biological role for this enzyme. Based on this finding, we have investigated the effect of APE1 downregulation on ECM-related gene expression and its biological consequences. Endogenous APE1 expression was downregulated in human cervical carcinoma HeLa cells and human lung carcinoma A549 cells using siRNA. When the expression of six ECM-related genes (TGFB1, LAMC1, FN1, COL1A1, COL3A1, and COL4A1) was evaluated, we found that APE1 knockdown upregulated the expression of TGFB1 in both cell lines. APE1 downregulation promoted actin rearrangement, inducing F-actin accumulation in HeLa cells and the dissipation of stress fibers in A549 cells. We also discovered that APE1 knockdown enhanced cellular motility in A549 cells, which was suppressed by the inhibition of transforming growth factor (TGF)-β1 signaling. These results suggested that APE1 controls the organization of actin cytoskeleton through the regulation of TGF-β1 expression, providing novel insights into the biological significance of APE1. PMID:25858321

  8. 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.

  9. The neuronal and actin commitment: Why do neurons need rings?

    PubMed

    Leite, Sérgio Carvalho; Sousa, Mónica Mendes

    2016-09-01

    The role of the actin cytoskeleton in neurons has been extensively studied in actin-enriched compartments such as the growth cone and dendritic spines. The recent discovery of actin rings in the axon shaft and in dendrites, together with the identification of axon actin trails, has advanced our understanding on actin organization and dynamics in neurons. However, specifically in the case of actin rings, the mechanisms regulating their nucleation and assembly, and the functions that they may exert in axons and dendrites remain largely unexplored. Here we discuss the possible structural, mechanistic and functional properties of the subcortical neuronal cytoskeleton putting the current knowledge in perspective with the information available on actin rings formed in other biological contexts, and with the organization of actin-spectrin lattices in other cell types. The detailed analysis of these novel neuronal actin ring structures, together with the elucidation of the function of actin-binding proteins in neuron biology, has a large potential to uncover new mechanisms of neuronal function under normal conditions that may have impact in our understanding of axon degeneration and regeneration. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  10. The neuronal and actin commitment: Why do neurons need rings?

    PubMed

    Leite, Sérgio Carvalho; Sousa, Mónica Mendes

    2016-09-01

    The role of the actin cytoskeleton in neurons has been extensively studied in actin-enriched compartments such as the growth cone and dendritic spines. The recent discovery of actin rings in the axon shaft and in dendrites, together with the identification of axon actin trails, has advanced our understanding on actin organization and dynamics in neurons. However, specifically in the case of actin rings, the mechanisms regulating their nucleation and assembly, and the functions that they may exert in axons and dendrites remain largely unexplored. Here we discuss the possible structural, mechanistic and functional properties of the subcortical neuronal cytoskeleton putting the current knowledge in perspective with the information available on actin rings formed in other biological contexts, and with the organization of actin-spectrin lattices in other cell types. The detailed analysis of these novel neuronal actin ring structures, together with the elucidation of the function of actin-binding proteins in neuron biology, has a large potential to uncover new mechanisms of neuronal function under normal conditions that may have impact in our understanding of axon degeneration and regeneration. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26784007

  11. 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. PMID:26240174

  12. Overexpression of actin-depolymerizing factor blocks oxidized low-density lipoprotein-induced mouse brain microvascular endothelial cell barrier dysfunction.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jun; Sun, Lu; Si, Yan-Fang; Li, Bao-Min

    2012-12-01

    The aim of present work was to elucidate the role of actin-depolymerizing factor (ADF), an important regulator of actin cytoskeleton, in the oxidized low-density lipoprotein (ox-LDL)-induced blood-brain barrier (BBB) disruption. The primary mouse brain microvascular endothelial cells (MBMECs) were exposed to ox-LDL. Treatment with LDL served as control. It was found that ADF mRNA level and protein expression were decreased when exposed to ox-LDL in MBMECs. Then, we investigated the influence of ADF overexpression on ox-LDL-treated MBMECs. Structurally, overexpression of ADF inhibited ox-LDL-induced F-actin formation. Functionally, overexpression of ADF attenuated ox-LDL-induced disruption of endothelial barrier marked by restoration of transendothelial electrical resistance, permeability of Evans Blue and expression of tight junction-associated proteins including ZO-1 and occludin, and blocked ox-LDL-induced oxidative stress marked by inhibition of reactive oxygen species (ROS) formation and activity of NADPH oxidase and Nox2 expression. However, overexpression of ADF in control cells had no significant effect on endothelial permeability and ROS formation. In conclusion, overexpression of ADF blocks ox-LDL-induced disruption of endothelial barrier. In addition, siRNA-mediated downregulation of ADF expression aggravated ox-LDL-induced disruption of endothelial barrier and ROS formation. These findings identify ADF as a key signaling molecule in the regulation of BBB integrity and suggest that ADF might be used as a target to modulate diseases accompanied by ox-LDL-induced BBB compromise.

  13. Fine-Tuning of the Actin Cytoskeleton and Cell Adhesion During Drosophila Development by the Unconventional Guanine Nucleotide Exchange Factors Myoblast City and Sponge.

    PubMed

    Biersmith, Bridget; Wang, Zong-Heng; Geisbrecht, Erika R

    2015-06-01

    The evolutionarily conserved Dock proteins function as unconventional guanine nucleotide exchange factors (GEFs). Upon binding to engulfment and cell motility (ELMO) proteins, Dock-ELMO complexes activate the Rho family of small GTPases to mediate a diverse array of biological processes, including cell motility, apoptotic cell clearance, and axon guidance. Overlapping expression patterns and functional redundancy among the 11 vertebrate Dock family members, which are subdivided into four families (Dock A, B, C, and D), complicate genetic analysis. In both vertebrate and invertebrate systems, the actin dynamics regulator, Rac, is the target GTPase of the Dock-A subfamily. However, it remains unclear whether Rac or Rap1 are the in vivo downstream GTPases of the Dock-B subfamily. Drosophila melanogaster is an excellent genetic model organism for understanding Dock protein function as its genome encodes one ortholog per subfamily: Myoblast city (Mbc; Dock A) and Sponge (Spg; Dock B). Here we show that the roles of Spg and Mbc are not redundant in the Drosophila somatic muscle or the dorsal vessel. Moreover, we confirm the in vivo role of Mbc upstream of Rac and provide evidence that Spg functions in concert with Rap1, possibly to regulate aspects of cell adhesion. Together these data show that Mbc and Spg can have different downstream GTPase targets. Our findings predict that the ability to regulate downstream GTPases is dependent on cellular context and allows for the fine-tuning of actin cytoskeletal or cell adhesion events in biological processes that undergo cell morphogenesis.

  14. Recessive mutations in DOCK6, encoding the guanidine nucleotide exchange factor DOCK6, lead to abnormal actin cytoskeleton organization and Adams-Oliver syndrome.

    PubMed

    Shaheen, Ranad; Faqeih, Eissa; Sunker, Asma; Morsy, Heba; Al-Sheddi, Tarfa; Shamseldin, Hanan E; Adly, Nouran; Hashem, Mais; Alkuraya, Fowzan S

    2011-08-12

    Adams-Oliver syndrome (AOS) is defined by the combination of aplasia cutis congenita (ACC) and terminal transverse limb defects (TTLD). It is usually inherited as an autosomal-dominant trait, but autosomal-recessive inheritance has also been documented. In an individual with autosomal-recessive AOS, we combined autozygome analysis with exome sequencing to identify a homozygous truncating mutation in dedicator of cytokinesis 6 gene (DOCK6) which encodes an atypical guanidine exchange factor (GEF) known to activate two members of the Rho GTPase family: Cdc42 and Rac1. Another homozygous truncating mutation was identified upon targeted sequencing of DOCK6 in an unrelated individual with AOS. Consistent with the established role of Cdc42 and Rac1 in the organization of the actin cytoskeleton, we demonstrate a cellular phenotype typical of a defective actin cytoskeleton in patient cells. These findings, combined with a Dock6 expression profile that is consistent with an AOS phenotype as well as the very recent demonstration of dominant mutations of ARHGAP31 in AOS, establish Cdc42 and Rac1 as key molecules in the pathogenesis of AOS and suggest that other regulators of these Rho GTPase proteins might be good candidates in the quest to define the genetic spectrum of this genetically heterogeneous condition.

  15. Recessive Mutations in DOCK6, Encoding the Guanidine Nucleotide Exchange Factor DOCK6, Lead to Abnormal Actin Cytoskeleton Organization and Adams-Oliver Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Shaheen, Ranad; Faqeih, Eissa; Sunker, Asma; Morsy, Heba; Al-Sheddi, Tarfa; Shamseldin, Hanan E.; Adly, Nouran; Hashem, Mais; Alkuraya., Fowzan S.

    2011-01-01

    Adams-Oliver syndrome (AOS) is defined by the combination of aplasia cutis congenita (ACC) and terminal transverse limb defects (TTLD). It is usually inherited as an autosomal-dominant trait, but autosomal-recessive inheritance has also been documented. In an individual with autosomal-recessive AOS, we combined autozygome analysis with exome sequencing to identify a homozygous truncating mutation in dedicator of cytokinesis 6 gene (DOCK6) which encodes an atypical guanidine exchange factor (GEF) known to activate two members of the Rho GTPase family: Cdc42 and Rac1. Another homozygous truncating mutation was identified upon targeted sequencing of DOCK6 in an unrelated individual with AOS. Consistent with the established role of Cdc42 and Rac1 in the organization of the actin cytoskeleton, we demonstrate a cellular phenotype typical of a defective actin cytoskeleton in patient cells. These findings, combined with a Dock6 expression profile that is consistent with an AOS phenotype as well as the very recent demonstration of dominant mutations of ARHGAP31 in AOS, establish Cdc42 and Rac1 as key molecules in the pathogenesis of AOS and suggest that other regulators of these Rho GTPase proteins might be good candidates in the quest to define the genetic spectrum of this genetically heterogeneous condition. PMID:21820096

  16. Stochastic model of profilin-actin polymerization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Horan, Brandon; Vavylonis, Dimitrios

    A driving factor in cell motility and other processes that involve changes of cell shape is the rapid polymerization of actin subunits into long filaments. This process is regulated by profilin, a protein which binds to actin subunits and regulates elongation of actin filaments. Whether profilin stimulates polymerization by coupling to hydrolysis of ATP-bound actin is debated. Previous studies have proposed indirect coupling to ATP hydrolysis using rate equations, but did not include the effects of fluctuations that are important near the critical concentration. We developed stochastic simulations using the Gillespie algorithm to study single filament elongation at the barbed end in the presence of profilin. We used recently measured rate constants and estimated the rate of profilin binding to the barbed end such that detailed balance is satisfied. Fast phosphate release at the tip of the filament was accounted for. The elongation rate and length diffusivity as functions of profilin and actin concentration were calculated and used to extract the critical concentrations of free actin and of total actin. We show under what conditions profilin leads to an increase in the critical concentration of total actin but a decrease in the critical concentration of free actin.

  17. Interaction of formin FH2 with skeletal muscle actin. EPR and DSC studies.

    PubMed

    Kupi, Tünde; Gróf, Pál; Nyitrai, Miklós; Belágyi, József

    2013-10-01

    Formins are highly conserved proteins that are essential in the formation and regulation of the actin cytoskeleton. The formin homology 2 (FH2) domain is responsible for actin binding and acts as an important nucleating factor in eukaryotic cells. In this work EPR and DSC were used to investigate the properties of the mDia1-FH2 formin fragment and its interaction with actin. MDia1-FH2 was labeled with a maleimide spin probe (MSL). EPR results suggested that the MSL was attached to a single SH group in the FH2. In DSC and temperature-dependent EPR experiments we observed that mDia1-FH2 has a flexible structure and observed a major temperature-induced conformational change at 41 °C. The results also confirmed the previous observation obtained by fluorescence methods that formin binding can destabilize the structure of actin filaments. In the EPR experiments the intermolecular connection between the monomers of formin dimers proved to be flexible. Considering the complex molecular mechanisms underlying the cellular roles of formins this internal flexibility of the dimers is probably important for manifestation of their biological functions.

  18. 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

  19. 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

    2015-12-01

    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.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

    Actin cables, composed of actin filament bundles nucleated by formins, mediate intracellular transport for cell polarity establishment and maintenance. We previously observed that metaphase cells preferentially promote actin cable assembly through cyclin-dependent kinase 1 (Cdk1) activity. However, the relevant metaphase Cdk1 targets were not known. Here we show that the highly conserved actin filament crosslinking protein fimbrin is a critical Cdk1 target for actin cable assembly regulation in budding yeast. Fimbrin is specifically phosphorylated on threonine 103 by the metaphase cyclin-Cdk1 complex, in vivo and in vitro. On the basis of conformational simulations, we suggest that this phosphorylation stabilizes fimbrin's N-terminal domain, and modulates actin filament binding to regulate actin cable assembly and stability in cells. Overall, this work identifies fimbrin as a key target for cell cycle regulation of actin cable assembly in budding yeast, and suggests an underlying mechanism. PMID:27068241

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

    Actin cables, composed of actin filament bundles nucleated by formins, mediate intracellular transport for cell polarity establishment and maintenance. We previously observed that metaphase cells preferentially promote actin cable assembly through cyclin-dependent kinase 1 (Cdk1) activity. However, the relevant metaphase Cdk1 targets were not known. Here we show that the highly conserved actin filament crosslinking protein fimbrin is a critical Cdk1 target for actin cable assembly regulation in budding yeast. Fimbrin is specifically phosphorylated on threonine 103 by the metaphase cyclin–Cdk1 complex, in vivo and in vitro. On the basis of conformational simulations, we suggest that this phosphorylation stabilizes fimbrin's N-terminal domain, and modulates actin filament binding to regulate actin cable assembly and stability in cells. Overall, this work identifies fimbrin as a key target for cell cycle regulation of actin cable assembly in budding yeast, and suggests an underlying mechanism. PMID:27068241

  3. Dynamics of an actin spring

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2003-03-01

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

  4. Modulation of actin structure and function by phosphorylation of Tyr-53 and profilin binding

    SciTech Connect

    Baek, Kyuwon; Liu, Xiong; Ferron, Francois; Shu, Shi; Korn, Edward D.; Dominguez, Roberto

    2008-08-27

    On starvation, Dictyostelium cells aggregate to form multicellular fruiting bodies containing spores that germinate when transferred to nutrient-rich medium. This developmental cycle correlates with the extent of actin phosphorylation at Tyr-53 (pY53-actin), which is low in vegetative cells but high in viable mature spores. Here we describe high-resolution crystal structures of pY53-actin and unphosphorylated actin in complexes with gelsolin segment 1 and profilin. In the structure of pY53-actin, the phosphate group on Tyr-53 makes hydrogen-bonding interactions with residues of the DNase I-binding loop (D-loop) of actin, resulting in a more stable conformation of the D-loop than in the unphosphorylated structures. A more rigidly folded D-loop may explain some of the previously described properties of pY53-actin, including its increased critical concentration for polymerization, reduced rates of nucleation and pointed end elongation, and weak affinity for DNase I. We show here that phosphorylation of Tyr-53 inhibits subtilisin cleavage of the D-loop and reduces the rate of nucleotide exchange on actin. The structure of profilin-Dictyostelium-actin is strikingly similar to previously determined structures of profilin-{beta}-actin and profilin-{alpha}-actin. By comparing this representative set of profilin-actin structures with other structures of actin, we highlight the effects of profilin on the actin conformation. In the profilin-actin complexes, subdomains 1 and 3 of actin close around profilin, producing a 4.7 deg. rotation of the two major domains of actin relative to each other. As a result, the nucleotide cleft becomes moderately more open in the profilin-actin complex, probably explaining the stimulation of nucleotide exchange on actin by profilin.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-02-14

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

  6. CNS myelin wrapping is driven by actin disassembly.

    PubMed

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

    2015-07-27

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

  7. Actin cytoskeleton redox proteome oxidation by cadmium

    PubMed Central

    Go, Young-Mi; Orr, Michael

    2013-01-01

    Epidemiological studies associate environmental cadmium (Cd) exposure with the risk of lung diseases. Although mechanisms are not fully elucidated, several studies demonstrate Cd effects on actin and actin-associated proteins. In a recent study of Cd at concentrations similar to environmental exposures, we found that redox-dependent inflammatory signaling by NF-κB was sensitive to the actin-disrupting agent, cytochalasin D. The goal of the present study was to use mass spectrometry-based redox proteomics to investigate Cd effects on the actin cytoskeleton proteome and related functional pathways in lung cells at low environmental concentrations. The results showed that Cd under conditions that did not alter total protein thiols or glutathione redox state caused significant oxidation of peptidyl Cys of proteins regulating actin cytoskeleton. Immunofluorescence microscopy of lung fibroblasts and pulmonary artery endothelial cells showed that low-dose Cd exposure stimulated filamentous actin formation and nuclear localization of destrin, an actin-depolymerizing factor. Taken together, the results show that redox states of peptidyl Cys in proteins associated with actin cytoskeleton pathways are selectively oxidized in lung by Cd at levels thought to occur from environmental exposure. PMID:24077948

  8. Measuring induction times and crystal nucleation rates.

    PubMed

    Brandel, Clément; ter Horst, Joop H

    2015-01-01

    A large variation is observed in induction times measured under equal conditions in 1 ml solutions. Ruling out experimental errors, this variation originates from the nucleation process. The induction time distribution is explained by the stochastic nature of nucleation if the number of nuclei formed is approaching 1 per vial. Accurate heterogeneous crystal nucleation rates were determined from the induction time distributions on a 1 ml scale for racemic diprophylline in two solvents. The difference in nucleation behaviour in the two solvents originates from the energy barrier for nucleation, which is much higher in the solvent in which induction times are much longer. In addition the pre-exponential factor for the crystal nucleation rate in both solvents is rather low compared to predictions using Classical Nucleation Theory. Unfortunately, concentration and surface characteristics of the effective heterogeneous particles are not known which clouds a further molecular interpretation.

  9. Actin dynamics regulated by the balance of neuronal Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein (N-WASP) and cofilin activities determines the biphasic response of glucose-induced insulin secretion.

    PubMed

    Uenishi, Eita; Shibasaki, Tadao; Takahashi, Harumi; Seki, Chihiro; Hamaguchi, Hitomi; Yasuda, Takao; Tatebe, Masao; Oiso, Yutaka; Takenawa, Tadaomi; Seino, Susumu

    2013-09-01

    Actin dynamics in pancreatic β-cells is involved in insulin secretion. However, the molecular mechanisms of the regulation of actin dynamics by intracellular signals in pancreatic β-cells and its role in phasic insulin secretion are largely unknown. In this study, we elucidate the regulation of actin dynamics by neuronal Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein (N-WASP) and cofilin in pancreatic β-cells and demonstrate its role in glucose-induced insulin secretion (GIIS). N-WASP, which promotes actin polymerization through activation of the actin nucleation factor Arp2/3 complex, was found to be activated by glucose stimulation in insulin-secreting clonal pancreatic β-cells (MIN6-K8 β-cells). Introduction of a dominant-negative mutant of N-WASP, which lacks G-actin and Arp2/3 complex-binding region VCA, into MIN6-K8 β-cells or knockdown of N-WASP suppressed GIIS, especially the second phase. We also found that cofilin, which severs F-actin in its dephosphorylated (active) form, is converted to the phosphorylated (inactive) form by glucose stimulation in MIN6-K8 β-cells, thereby promoting F-actin remodeling. In addition, the dominant-negative mutant of cofilin, which inhibits activation of endogenous cofilin, or knockdown of cofilin reduced the second phase of GIIS. However, the first phase of GIIS occurs in the G-actin predominant state, in which cofilin activity predominates over N-WASP activity. Thus, actin dynamics regulated by the balance of N-WASP and cofilin activities determines the biphasic response of GIIS.

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

    PubMed

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

    1998-06-01

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

  11. Incorporation and turnover of biotin-labeled actin microinjected into fibroblastic cells: an immunoelectron microscopic study

    PubMed Central

    1989-01-01

    We investigated the mechanism of turnover of an actin microfilament system in fibroblastic cells on an electron microscopic level. A new derivative of actin was prepared by labeling muscle actin with biotin. Cultured fibroblastic cells were microinjected with biotinylated actin, and incorporated biotin-actin molecules were detected by immunoelectron microscopy using an anti-biotin antibody and a colloidal gold-labeled secondary antibody. We also analyzed the localization of injected biotin-actin molecules on a molecular level by freeze-drying techniques. Incorporation of biotin-actin was rapid in motile peripheral regions, such as lamellipodia and microspikes. At approximately 1 min after injection, biotin-actin molecules were mainly incorporated into the distal part of actin bundles in the microspikes. Heavily labeled actin filaments were also observed at the distal fringe of the densely packed actin networks in the lamellipodium. By 5 min after injection, most actin polymers in microspikes and lamellipodia were labeled uniformly. These findings suggest that actin subunits are added preferentially at the membrane-associated ends of preexisting actin filaments. At earlier times after injection, we often observed that the labeled segments were continuous with unlabeled segments, suggesting the incorporation of new subunits at the ends of preexisting filaments. Actin incorporation into stress fibers was a slower process. At 2-3 min after injection, microfilaments at the surface of stress fibers incorporated biotin-actin, but filaments in the core region of stress fibers did not. At 5-10 min after injection, increasing density of labeling along stress fibers toward their distal ends was observed. Stress fiber termini are generally associated with focal contacts. There was no rapid nucleation of actin filaments off the membrane of focal contacts and the pattern of actin incorporation at focal contacts was essentially identical to that into distal parts of stress fibers

  12. Actin in Herpesvirus Infection

    PubMed Central

    Roberts, Kari L.; Baines, Joel D.

    2011-01-01

    Actin is important for a variety of cellular processes, including uptake of extracellular material and intracellular transport. Several emerging lines of evidence indicate that herpesviruses exploit actin and actin-associated myosin motors for viral entry, intranuclear transport of capsids, and virion egress. The goal of this review is to explore these processes and to highlight potential future directions for this area of research. PMID:21994736

  13. Actin Rings of Power.

    PubMed

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

    2016-06-20

    Circular or ring-like actin structures play important roles in various developmental and physiological processes. Commonly, these rings are composed of actin filaments and myosin motors (actomyosin) that, upon activation, trigger ring constriction. Actomyosin ring constriction, in turn, has been implicated in key cellular processes ranging from cytokinesis to wound closure. Non-constricting actin ring-like structures also form at cell-cell contacts, where they exert a stabilizing function. Here, we review recent studies on the formation and function of actin ring-like structures in various morphogenetic processes, shedding light on how those different rings have been adapted to fulfill their specific roles. PMID:27326928

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-02-01

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

  15. Actinic Granuloma with Focal Segmental Glomerulosclerosis

    PubMed Central

    Phasukthaworn, Ruedee; Chanprapaph, Kumutnart; Vachiramon, Vasanop

    2016-01-01

    Actinic granuloma is an uncommon granulomatous disease, characterized by annular erythematous plaque with central clearing predominately located on sun-damaged skin. The pathogenesis is not well understood, ultraviolet radiation is recognized as precipitating factor. We report a case of a 52-year-old woman who presented with asymptomatic annular erythematous plaques on the forehead and both cheeks persisting for 2 years. The clinical presentation and histopathologic findings support the diagnosis of actinic granuloma. During that period of time, she also developed focal segmental glomerulosclerosis. The association between actinic granuloma and focal segmental glomerulosclerosis needs to be clarified by further studies. PMID:27293392

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

    PubMed

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

    2001-04-01

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

  17. Comparison of the interfacial energy and pre-exponential factor calculated from the induction time and metastable zone width data based on classical nucleation theory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shiau, Lie-Ding

    2016-09-01

    The pre-exponential factor and interfacial energy obtained from the metastable zone width (MSZW) data using the integral method proposed by Shiau and Lu [1] are compared in this study with those obtained from the induction time data using the conventional method (ti ∝J-1) for three crystallization systems, including potassium sulfate in water in a 200 mL vessel, borax decahydrate in water in a 100 mL vessel and butyl paraben in ethanol in a 5 mL tube. The results indicate that the pre-exponential factor and interfacial energy calculated from the induction time data based on classical nucleation theory are consistent with those calculated from the MSZW data using the same detection technique for the studied systems.

  18. [Actin in the wound healing process].

    PubMed

    Nowak, Dorota; Popow-Woźniak, Agnieszka; Raźnikiewicz, Linda; Malicka-Błaszkiewicz, Maria

    2009-01-01

    Wound healing is an important biological process of crucial value for organisms survival and retention of its proper functions. The recognition of molecular mechanisms of these phenomenon is still under investigation. The transition of mesenchymal fibroblasts to myofibroblasts is a key point in wound healing. The contraction ability of myofibroblast enables the shrinkage of a wound and closes its edges. Alpha smooth muscle actin (alpha-SMA), one of six actin isoforms, is a marker of compeletely differentiated myofibroblast. The regulation of differentiation process depends on many growth factors (especially TGF beta 1), the level of active thymosin beta 4, extracellular matrix proteins--including fibronectin, and also on specificity of microenvironment. Thymosin beta 4 is responsible for maintenance of pool of monomeric actin and actin filaments depolymerization. It can also act as a transcription factor, migration stimulator and immunomodulator, so this protein deserves for more attention in wound healing research field. PMID:19824469

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-04-01

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

  1. Direct dynamin–actin interactions regulate the actin cytoskeleton

    PubMed Central

    Gu, Changkyu; Yaddanapudi, Suma; Weins, Astrid; Osborn, Teresia; Reiser, Jochen; Pollak, Martin; Hartwig, John; Sever, Sanja

    2010-01-01

    The large GTPase dynamin assembles into higher order structures that are thought to promote endocytosis. Dynamin also regulates the actin cytoskeleton through an unknown, GTPase-dependent mechanism. Here, we identify a highly conserved site in dynamin that binds directly to actin filaments and aligns them into bundles. Point mutations in the actin-binding domain cause aberrant membrane ruffling and defective actin stress fibre formation in cells. Short actin filaments promote dynamin assembly into higher order structures, which in turn efficiently release the actin-capping protein (CP) gelsolin from barbed actin ends in vitro, allowing for elongation of actin filaments. Together, our results support a model in which assembled dynamin, generated through interactions with short actin filaments, promotes actin polymerization via displacement of actin-CPs. PMID:20935625

  2. Regulation of cellular actin architecture by S100A10.

    PubMed

    Jung, M Juliane; Murzik, Ulrike; Wehder, Liane; Hemmerich, Peter; Melle, Christian

    2010-04-15

    Actin structures are involved in several biological processes and the disruption of actin polymerisation induces impaired motility of eukaryotic cells. Different factors are involved in regulation and maintenance of the cytoskeletal actin architecture. Here we show that S100A10 participates in the particular organisation of actin filaments. Down-regulation of S100A10 by specific siRNA triggered a disorganisation of filamentous actin structures without a reduction of the total cellular actin concentration. In contrast, the formation of cytoskeleton structures containing tubulin was unhindered in S100A10 depleted cells. Interestingly, the cellular distribution of annexin A2, an interaction partner of S100A10, was unaffected in S100A10 depleted cells. Cells lacking S100A10 showed an impaired migration activity and were unable to close a scratched wound. Our data provide first insights of S100A10 function as a regulator of the filamentous actin network. PMID:20100475

  3. The Infection of Cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) Roots by Meloidogyne incognita Alters the Expression of Actin-Depolymerizing Factor (ADF) Genes, Particularly in Association with Giant Cell Formation

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Bin; Liu, Xingwang; Liu, Ying; Xue, Shudan; Cai, Yanling; Yang, Sen; Dong, Mingming; Zhang, Yaqi; Liu, Huiling; Zhao, Binyu; Qi, Changhong; Zhu, Ning; Ren, Huazhong

    2016-01-01

    Cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) is threatened by substantial yield losses due to the south root-knot nematode (Meloidogyne incognita). However, understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying the process of nematode infection is still limited. In this study, we found that M. incognita infection affected the structure of cells in cucumber roots and treatment of the cytoskeleton inhibitor (cytochalasin D) reduced root-knot nematode (RKN) parasitism. It is known that Actin-Depolymerizing Factor (ADF) affects cell structure, as well as the organization of the cytoskeleton. To address the hypothesis that nematode-induced abnormal cell structures and cytoskeletal rearrangements might be mediated by the ADF genes, we identified and characterized eight cucumber ADF (CsADF) genes. Phylogenetic analysis showed that the cucumber ADF gene family is grouped into four ancient subclasses. Expression analysis revealed that CsADF1, CsADF2-1, CsADF2-2, CsADF2-3 (Subclass I), and CsADF6 (Subclass III) have higher transcript levels than CsADF7-1, CsADF7-2 (Subclass II genes), and CsADF5 (Subclass IV) in roots. Members of subclass I genes (CsADF1, CsADF2-1, CsADF2-2, and CsADF2-3), with the exception of CsADF2-1, exhibited a induction of expression in roots 14 days after their inoculation (DAI) with nematodes. However, the expression of subclass II genes (CsADF7-1 and CsADF7-2) showed no significant change after inoculation. The transcript levels of CsADF6 (Subclass III) showed a specific induction at 21 DAI, while CsADF5 (Subclass IV) was weakly expressed in roots, but was strongly up-regulated as early as 7 DAI. In addition, treatment of roots with cytochalasin D caused an approximately 2-fold down-regulation of the CsADF genes in the treated plants. These results suggest that CsADF gene mediated actin dynamics are associated with structural changes in roots as a consequence of M. incognita infection. PMID:27695469

  4. The Infection of Cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) Roots by Meloidogyne incognita Alters the Expression of Actin-Depolymerizing Factor (ADF) Genes, Particularly in Association with Giant Cell Formation

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Bin; Liu, Xingwang; Liu, Ying; Xue, Shudan; Cai, Yanling; Yang, Sen; Dong, Mingming; Zhang, Yaqi; Liu, Huiling; Zhao, Binyu; Qi, Changhong; Zhu, Ning; Ren, Huazhong

    2016-01-01

    Cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) is threatened by substantial yield losses due to the south root-knot nematode (Meloidogyne incognita). However, understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying the process of nematode infection is still limited. In this study, we found that M. incognita infection affected the structure of cells in cucumber roots and treatment of the cytoskeleton inhibitor (cytochalasin D) reduced root-knot nematode (RKN) parasitism. It is known that Actin-Depolymerizing Factor (ADF) affects cell structure, as well as the organization of the cytoskeleton. To address the hypothesis that nematode-induced abnormal cell structures and cytoskeletal rearrangements might be mediated by the ADF genes, we identified and characterized eight cucumber ADF (CsADF) genes. Phylogenetic analysis showed that the cucumber ADF gene family is grouped into four ancient subclasses. Expression analysis revealed that CsADF1, CsADF2-1, CsADF2-2, CsADF2-3 (Subclass I), and CsADF6 (Subclass III) have higher transcript levels than CsADF7-1, CsADF7-2 (Subclass II genes), and CsADF5 (Subclass IV) in roots. Members of subclass I genes (CsADF1, CsADF2-1, CsADF2-2, and CsADF2-3), with the exception of CsADF2-1, exhibited a induction of expression in roots 14 days after their inoculation (DAI) with nematodes. However, the expression of subclass II genes (CsADF7-1 and CsADF7-2) showed no significant change after inoculation. The transcript levels of CsADF6 (Subclass III) showed a specific induction at 21 DAI, while CsADF5 (Subclass IV) was weakly expressed in roots, but was strongly up-regulated as early as 7 DAI. In addition, treatment of roots with cytochalasin D caused an approximately 2-fold down-regulation of the CsADF genes in the treated plants. These results suggest that CsADF gene mediated actin dynamics are associated with structural changes in roots as a consequence of M. incognita infection.

  5. A second Las17 monomeric actin-binding motif functions in Arp2/3-dependent actin polymerization during endocytosis.

    PubMed

    Feliciano, Daniel; Tolsma, Thomas O; Farrell, Kristen B; Aradi, Al; Di Pietro, Santiago M

    2015-04-01

    During clathrin-mediated endocytosis (CME), actin assembly provides force to drive vesicle internalization. Members of the Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein (WASP) family play a fundamental role stimulating actin assembly. WASP family proteins contain a WH2 motif that binds globular actin (G-actin) and a central-acidic motif that binds the Arp2/3 complex, thus promoting the formation of branched actin filaments. Yeast WASP (Las17) is the strongest of five factors promoting Arp2/3-dependent actin polymerization during CME. It was suggested that this strong activity may be caused by a putative second G-actin-binding motif in Las17. Here, we describe the in vitro and in vivo characterization of such Las17 G-actin-binding motif (LGM) and its dependence on a group of conserved arginine residues. Using the yeast two-hybrid system, GST-pulldown, fluorescence polarization and pyrene-actin polymerization assays, we show that LGM binds G-actin and is necessary for normal Arp2/3-mediated actin polymerization in vitro. Live-cell fluorescence microscopy experiments demonstrate that LGM is required for normal dynamics of actin polymerization during CME. Further, LGM is necessary for normal dynamics of endocytic machinery components that are recruited at early, intermediate and late stages of endocytosis, as well as for optimal endocytosis of native CME cargo. Both in vitro and in vivo experiments show that LGM has relatively lower potency compared to the previously known Las17 G-actin-binding motif, WH2. These results establish a second G-actin-binding motif in Las17 and advance our knowledge on the mechanism of actin assembly during CME.

  6. Nuclear actin and protein 4.1: essential interactions during nuclear assembly in vitro.

    PubMed

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

    2003-09-16

    Structural protein 4.1, which has crucial interactions within the spectrin-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 detergent-extracted 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 nonperturbing conditions, the total nuclear actin population is retained and visualized in situ relative to intact chromatin. We detected actin initially when chromatin and nuclear pores began assembling. As nuclear lamina assembled, but preceding DNA synthesis, actin distributed in a reticulated pattern throughout the nucleus. Protein 4.1 epitopes also were detected when actin began to accumulate in nuclei, producing a diffuse coincident pattern. As nuclei matured, actin was detected both coincident with and also independent of 4.1 epitopes. To test whether acquisition of nuclear actin is required for nuclear assembly, the actin inhibitor latrunculin A was added to Xenopus egg extracts during nuclear assembly. Latrunculin A strongly perturbed nuclear assembly and produced distorted nuclear structures containing neither actin nor protein 4.1. Our results suggest that actin as well as 4.1 is necessary for nuclear assembly and that 4.1-actin interactions may be critical.

  7. 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.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2008-01-01

    The actin-related protein 2/3 (Arp2/3) complex mediates the formation of branched actin filaments at the leading edge of motile cells and in the comet tails moving certain intracellular pathogens. Crystal structures of the Arp2/3 complex are available, but the architecture of the junction formed by the Arp2/3 complex at the base of the branch was not known. In this study, we use electron tomography to reconstruct the branch junction with sufficient resolution to show how the Arp2/3 complex interacts with the mother filament. Our analysis reveals conformational changes in both the mother filament and Arp2/3 complex upon branch formation. The Arp2 and Arp3 subunits reorganize into a dimer, providing a short-pitch template for elongation of the daughter filament. Two subunits of the mother filament undergo conformational changes that increase stability of the branch. These data provide a rationale for why branch formation requires cooperative interactions among the Arp2/3 complex, nucleation-promoting factors, an actin monomer, and the mother filament. PMID:18316411

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

    PubMed

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

    2008-03-10

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

  10. Defining a core set of actin cytoskeletal proteins critical for actin-based motility of Rickettsia.

    PubMed

    Serio, Alisa W; Jeng, Robert L; Haglund, Cat M; Reed, Shawna C; Welch, Matthew D

    2010-05-20

    Many Rickettsia species are intracellular bacterial pathogens that use actin-based motility for spread during infection. However, while other bacteria assemble actin tails consisting of branched networks, Rickettsia assemble long parallel actin bundles, suggesting the use of a distinct mechanism for exploiting actin. To identify the underlying mechanisms and host factors involved in Rickettsia parkeri actin-based motility, we performed an RNAi screen targeting 115 actin cytoskeletal genes in Drosophila cells. The screen delineated a set of four core proteins-profilin, fimbrin/T-plastin, capping protein, and cofilin--as crucial for determining actin tail length, organizing filament architecture, and enabling motility. In mammalian cells, these proteins were localized throughout R. parkeri tails, consistent with a role in motility. Profilin and fimbrin/T-plastin were critical for the motility of R. parkeri but not Listeria monocytogenes. Our results highlight key distinctions between the evolutionary strategies and molecular mechanisms employed by bacterial pathogens to assemble and organize actin. PMID:20478540

  11. 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

  12. Diffusion of GPI-anchored proteins is influenced by the activity of dynamic cortical actin.

    PubMed

    Saha, Suvrajit; Lee, Il-Hyung; Polley, Anirban; Groves, Jay T; Rao, Madan; Mayor, Satyajit

    2015-11-01

    Molecular diffusion at the surface of living cells is believed to be predominantly driven by thermal kicks. However, there is growing evidence that certain cell surface molecules are driven by the fluctuating dynamics of cortical cytoskeleton. Using fluorescence correlation spectroscopy, we measure the diffusion coefficient of a variety of cell surface molecules over a temperature range of 24-37 °C. Exogenously incorporated fluorescent lipids with short acyl chains exhibit the expected increase of diffusion coefficient over this temperature range. In contrast, we find that GPI-anchored proteins exhibit temperature-independent diffusion over this range and revert to temperature-dependent diffusion on cell membrane blebs, in cells depleted of cholesterol, and upon acute perturbation of actin dynamics and myosin activity. A model transmembrane protein with a cytosolic actin-binding domain also exhibits the temperature-independent behavior, directly implicating the role of cortical actin. We show that diffusion of GPI-anchored proteins also becomes temperature dependent when the filamentous dynamic actin nucleator formin is inhibited. However, changes in cortical actin mesh size or perturbation of branched actin nucleator Arp2/3 do not affect this behavior. Thus cell surface diffusion of GPI-anchored proteins and transmembrane proteins that associate with actin is driven by active fluctuations of dynamic cortical actin filaments in addition to thermal fluctuations, consistent with expectations from an "active actin-membrane composite" cell surface.

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-11-19

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

  14. Diffusion of GPI-anchored proteins is influenced by the activity of dynamic cortical actin

    PubMed Central

    Saha, Suvrajit; Lee, Il-Hyung; Polley, Anirban; Groves, Jay T.; Rao, Madan; Mayor, Satyajit

    2015-01-01

    Molecular diffusion at the surface of living cells is believed to be predominantly driven by thermal kicks. However, there is growing evidence that certain cell surface molecules are driven by the fluctuating dynamics of cortical cytoskeleton. Using fluorescence correlation spectroscopy, we measure the diffusion coefficient of a variety of cell surface molecules over a temperature range of 24–37°C. Exogenously incorporated fluorescent lipids with short acyl chains exhibit the expected increase of diffusion coefficient over this temperature range. In contrast, we find that GPI-anchored proteins exhibit temperature-independent diffusion over this range and revert to temperature-dependent diffusion on cell membrane blebs, in cells depleted of cholesterol, and upon acute perturbation of actin dynamics and myosin activity. A model transmembrane protein with a cytosolic actin-binding domain also exhibits the temperature-independent behavior, directly implicating the role of cortical actin. We show that diffusion of GPI-anchored proteins also becomes temperature dependent when the filamentous dynamic actin nucleator formin is inhibited. However, changes in cortical actin mesh size or perturbation of branched actin nucleator Arp2/3 do not affect this behavior. Thus cell surface diffusion of GPI-anchored proteins and transmembrane proteins that associate with actin is driven by active fluctuations of dynamic cortical actin filaments in addition to thermal fluctuations, consistent with expectations from an “active actin-membrane composite” cell surface. PMID:26378258

  15. Actin Automata with Memory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alonso-Sanz, Ramón; Adamatzky, Andy

    Actin is a globular protein which forms long polar filaments in eukaryotic. The actin filaments play the roles of cytoskeleton, motility units, information processing and learning. We model actin filament as a double chain of finite state machines, nodes, which take states “0” and “1”. The states are abstractions of absence and presence of a subthreshold charge on actin units corresponding to the nodes. All nodes update their state in parallel to discrete time. A node updates its current state depending on states of two closest neighbors in the node chain and two closest neighbors in the complementary chain. Previous models of actin automata consider momentary state transitions of nodes. We enrich the actin automata model by assuming that states of nodes depend not only on the current states of neighboring node but also on their past states. Thus, we assess the effect of memory of past states on the dynamics of acting automata. We demonstrate in computational experiments that memory slows down propagation of perturbations, decrease entropy of space-time patterns generated, transforms traveling localizations to stationary oscillators, and stationary oscillations to still patterns.

  16. Transient nucleation in glasses

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kelton, K. F.

    1991-01-01

    Nucleation rates in condensed systems are frequently not at their steady state values. Such time dependent (or transient) nucleation is most clearly observed in devitrification studies of metallic and silicate glasses. The origin of transient nucleation and its role in the formation and stability of desired phases and microstructures are discussed. Numerical models of nucleation in isothermal and nonisothermal situations, based on the coupled differential equations describing cluster evolution within the classical theory, are presented. The importance of transient nucleation in glass formation and crystallization is discussed.

  17. Sensing actin dynamics: Structural basis for G-actin-sensitive nuclear import of MAL

    SciTech Connect

    Hirano, Hidemi; Matsuura, Yoshiyuki

    2011-10-22

    Highlights: {yields} MAL has a bipartite NLS that binds to Imp{alpha} in an extended conformation. {yields} Mutational analyses verified the functional significance of MAL-Imp{alpha} interactions. {yields} Induced folding and NLS-masking by G-actins inhibit nuclear import of MAL. -- Abstract: The coordination of cytoskeletal actin dynamics with gene expression reprogramming is emerging as a crucial mechanism to control diverse cellular processes, including cell migration, differentiation and neuronal circuit assembly. The actin-binding transcriptional coactivator MAL (also known as MRTF-A/MKL1/BSAC) senses G-actin concentration and transduces Rho GTPase signals to serum response factor (SRF). MAL rapidly shuttles between the cytoplasm and the nucleus in unstimulated cells but Rho-induced depletion of G-actin leads to MAL nuclear accumulation and activation of transcription of SRF:MAL-target genes. Although the molecular and structural basis of actin-regulated nucleocytoplasmic shuttling of MAL is not understood fully, it is proposed that nuclear import of MAL is mediated by importin {alpha}/{beta} heterodimer, and that G-actin competes with importin {alpha}/{beta} for the binding to MAL. Here we present structural, biochemical and cell biological evidence that MAL has a classical bipartite nuclear localization signal (NLS) in the N-terminal 'RPEL' domain containing Arg-Pro-X-X-X-Glu-Leu (RPEL) motifs. The NLS residues of MAL adopt an extended conformation and bind along the surface groove of importin-{alpha}, interacting with the major- and minor-NLS binding sites. We also present a crystal structure of wild-type MAL RPEL domain in complex with five G-actins. Comparison of the importin-{alpha}- and actin-complexes revealed that the binding of G-actins to MAL is associated with folding of NLS residues into a helical conformation that is inappropriate for importin-{alpha} recognition.

  18. Arp2/3-mediated F-actin formation controls regulated exocytosis in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Tran, Duy T.; Masedunskas, Andrius; Weigert, Roberto; Ten Hagen, Kelly G.

    2015-01-01

    The actin cytoskeleton plays crucial roles in many cellular processes, including regulated secretion. However, the mechanisms controlling F-actin dynamics in this process are largely unknown. Through 3D time-lapse imaging in a secreting organ, we show that F-actin is actively disassembled along the apical plasma membrane at the site of secretory vesicle fusion and re-assembled directionally on vesicle membranes. Moreover, we show that fusion pore formation and PIP2 redistribution precedes actin and myosin recruitment to secretory vesicle membranes. Finally, we show essential roles for the branched actin nucleators Arp2/3- and WASp in the process of secretory cargo expulsion and integration of vesicular membranes with the apical plasma membrane. Our results highlight previously unknown roles for branched actin in exocytosis and provide a genetically tractable system to image the temporal and spatial dynamics of polarized secretion in vivo. PMID:26639106

  19. Arp2/3-mediated F-actin formation controls regulated exocytosis in vivo.

    PubMed

    Tran, Duy T; Masedunskas, Andrius; Weigert, Roberto; Ten Hagen, Kelly G

    2015-01-01

    The actin cytoskeleton plays crucial roles in many cellular processes, including regulated secretion. However, the mechanisms controlling F-actin dynamics in this process are largely unknown. Through 3D time-lapse imaging in a secreting organ, we show that F-actin is actively disassembled along the apical plasma membrane at the site of secretory vesicle fusion and re-assembled directionally on vesicle membranes. Moreover, we show that fusion pore formation and PIP2 redistribution precedes actin and myosin recruitment to secretory vesicle membranes. Finally, we show essential roles for the branched actin nucleators Arp2/3- and WASp in the process of secretory cargo expulsion and integration of vesicular membranes with the apical plasma membrane. Our results highlight previously unknown roles for branched actin in exocytosis and provide a genetically tractable system to image the temporal and spatial dynamics of polarized secretion in vivo.

  20. Arp2/3-mediated F-actin formation controls regulated exocytosis in vivo.

    PubMed

    Tran, Duy T; Masedunskas, Andrius; Weigert, Roberto; Ten Hagen, Kelly G

    2015-01-01

    The actin cytoskeleton plays crucial roles in many cellular processes, including regulated secretion. However, the mechanisms controlling F-actin dynamics in this process are largely unknown. Through 3D time-lapse imaging in a secreting organ, we show that F-actin is actively disassembled along the apical plasma membrane at the site of secretory vesicle fusion and re-assembled directionally on vesicle membranes. Moreover, we show that fusion pore formation and PIP2 redistribution precedes actin and myosin recruitment to secretory vesicle membranes. Finally, we show essential roles for the branched actin nucleators Arp2/3- and WASp in the process of secretory cargo expulsion and integration of vesicular membranes with the apical plasma membrane. Our results highlight previously unknown roles for branched actin in exocytosis and provide a genetically tractable system to image the temporal and spatial dynamics of polarized secretion in vivo. PMID:26639106

  1. The Molecular Evolution of Actin

    PubMed Central

    Hightower, Robin C.; Meagher, Richard B.

    1986-01-01

    We have investigated the molecular evolution of plant and nonplant actin genes comparing nucleotide and amino acid sequences of 20 actin genes. Nucleotide changes resulting in amino acid substitutions (replacement substitutions) ranged from 3–7% for all pairwise comparisons of animal actin genes with the following exceptions. Comparisons between higher animal muscle actin gene sequences and comparisons between higher animal cytoplasmic actin gene sequences indicated <3% divergence. Comparisons between plant and nonplant actin genes revealed, with two exceptions, 11–15% replacement substitution. In the analysis of plant actins, replacement substitution between soybean actin genes SAc1, SAc3, SAc4 and maize actin gene MAc1 ranged from 8–10%, whereas these members within the soybean actin gene family ranged from 6–9% replacement substitution. The rate of sequence divergence of plant actin sequences appears to be similar to that observed for animal actins. Furthermore, these and other data suggest that the plant actin gene family is ancient and that the families of soybean and maize actin genes have diverged from a single common ancestral plant actin gene that originated long before the divergence of monocots and dicots. The soybean actin multigene family encodes at least three classes of actin. These classes each contain a pair of actin genes that have been designated kappa (SAc1, SAc6), lambda (SAc2, SAc4) and mu (SAc3, SAc7). The three classes of soybean actin are more divergent in nucleotide sequence from one another than higher animal cytoplasmic actin is divergent from muscle actin. The location and distribution of amino acid changes were compared between actin proteins from all sources. A comparison of the hydropathy of all actin sequences, except from Oxytricha, indicated a strong similarity in hydropathic character between all plant and nonplant actins despite the greater number of replacement substitutions in plant actins. These protein sequence

  2. Nucleation and growth of cadherin adhesions

    SciTech Connect

    Lambert, Mireille; Thoumine, Olivier; Brevier, Julien; Choquet, Daniel; Riveline, Daniel; Mege, Rene-Marc

    2007-11-15

    Cell-cell contact formation relies on the recruitment of cadherin molecules and their anchoring to actin. However, the precise chronology of events from initial cadherin trans-interactions to adhesion strengthening is unclear, in part due to the lack of access to the distribution of cadherins within adhesion zones. Using N-cadherin expressing cells interacting with N-cadherin coated surfaces, we characterized the formation of cadherin adhesions at the ventral cell surface. TIRF and RIC microscopies revealed streak-like accumulations of cadherin along actin fibers. FRAP analysis indicated that engaged cadherins display a slow turnover at equilibrium, compatible with a continuous addition and removal of cadherin molecules within the adhesive contact. Association of cadherin cytoplasmic tail to actin as well as actin cables and myosin II activity are required for the formation and maintenance of cadherin adhesions. Using time lapse microscopy we deciphered how cadherin adhesions form and grow. As lamellipodia protrude, cadherin foci stochastically formed a few microns away from the cell margin. Neo-formed foci coalesced aligned and coalesced with preformed foci either by rearward sliding or gap filling to form cadherin adhesions. Foci experienced collapse at the rear of cadherin adhesions. Based on these results, we present a model for the nucleation, directional growth and shrinkage of cadherin adhesions.

  3. Yeast translation elongation factor-1A binds vacuole-localized Rho1p to facilitate membrane integrity through F-actin remodeling.

    PubMed

    Bodman, James A R; Yang, Yang; Logan, Michael R; Eitzen, Gary

    2015-02-20

    Rho GTPases are molecular switches that modulate a variety of cellular processes, most notably those involving actin dynamics. We have previously shown that yeast vacuolar membrane fusion requires re-organization of actin filaments mediated by two Rho GTPases, Rho1p and Cdc42p. Cdc42p initiates actin polymerization to facilitate membrane tethering; Rho1p has a role in the late stages of vacuolar fusion, but its mode of action is unknown. Here, we identified eEF1A as a vacuolar Rho1p-interacting protein. eEF1A (encoded by the TEF1 and TEF2 genes in yeast) is an aminoacyl-tRNA transferase needed during protein translation. eEF1A also has a second function that is independent of translation; it binds and organizes actin filaments into ordered cable structures. Here, we report that eEF1A interacts with Rho1p via a C-terminal subdomain. This interaction occurs predominantly when both proteins are in the GDP-bound state. Therefore, eEF1A is an atypical downstream effector of Rho1p. eEF1A does not promote vacuolar fusion; however, overexpression of the Rho1p-interacting subdomain affects vacuolar morphology. Vacuoles were destabilized and prone to leakage when treated with the eEF1A inhibitor narciclasine. We propose a model whereby eEF1A binds to Rho1p-GDP on the vacuolar membrane; it is released upon Rho1p activation and then bundles actin filaments to stabilize fused vacuoles. Therefore, the Rho1p-eEF1A complex acts to spatially localize a pool of eEF1A to vacuoles where it can readily organize F-actin.

  4. Rapid depletion of mutant eukaryotic initiation factor 5A at restrictive temperature reveals connections to actin cytoskeleton and cell cycle progression.

    PubMed

    Chatterjee, Ishita; Gross, Stephane R; Kinzy, Terri Goss; Chen, Kuang Yu

    2006-03-01

    Eukaryotic initiation factor 5A (eIF5A) is the only protein in nature that contains hypusine, an unusual amino acid derived from the modification of lysine by spermidine. Two genes, TIF51A and TIF51B, encode eIF5A in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. In an effort to understand the structure-function relationship of eIF5A, we have generated yeast mutants by introducing plasmid-borne tif51A into a double null strain where both TIF51A and TIF51B have been disrupted. One of the mutants, tsL102A strain (tif51A L102A tif51aDelta tif51bDelta) exhibits a strong temperature-sensitive growth phenotype. At the restrictive temperature, tsL102A strain also exhibits a cell shape change, a lack of volume change in response to temperature increase and becomes more sensitive to ethanol, a hallmark of defects in the PKC/WSC cell wall integrity pathway. In addition, a striking change in actin dynamics and a complete cell cycle arrest at G1 phase occur in tsL102A cells at restrictive temperature. The temperature-sensitivity of tsL102A strain is due to a rapid loss of mutant eIF5A with the half-life reduced from 6 h at permissive temperature to 20 min at restrictive temperature. Phenylmethyl sulfonylfluoride (PMSF), an irreversible inhibitor of serine protease, inhibited the degradation of mutant eIF5A and suppressed the temperature-sensitive growth arrest. Sorbitol, an osmotic stabilizer that complement defects in PKC/WSC pathways, stabilizes the mutant eIF5A and suppresses all the observed temperature-sensitive phenotypes. PMID:16408210

  5. Molecular Phylogeny and Evolution of Parabasalia with Improved Taxon Sampling and New Protein Markers of Actin and Elongation Factor-1α

    PubMed Central

    Noda, Satoko; Mantini, Cléa; Meloni, Dionigia; Inoue, Jun-Ichi; Kitade, Osamu; Viscogliosi, Eric; Ohkuma, Moriya

    2012-01-01

    Background Inferring the evolutionary history of phylogenetically isolated, deep-branching groups of taxa—in particular determining the root—is often extraordinarily difficult because their close relatives are unavailable as suitable outgroups. One of these taxonomic groups is the phylum Parabasalia, which comprises morphologically diverse species of flagellated protists of ecological, medical, and evolutionary significance. Indeed, previous molecular phylogenetic analyses of members of this phylum have yielded conflicting and possibly erroneous inferences. Furthermore, many species of Parabasalia are symbionts in the gut of termites and cockroaches or parasites and therefore formidably difficult to cultivate, rendering available data insufficient. Increasing the numbers of examined taxa and informative characters (e.g., genes) is likely to produce more reliable inferences. Principal Findings Actin and elongation factor-1α genes were identified newly from 22 species of termite-gut symbionts through careful manipulations and seven cultured species, which covered major lineages of Parabasalia. Their protein sequences were concatenated and analyzed with sequences of previously and newly identified glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase and the small-subunit rRNA gene. This concatenated dataset provided more robust phylogenetic relationships among major groups of Parabasalia and a more plausible new root position than those previously reported. Conclusions/Significance We conclude that increasing the number of sampled taxa as well as the addition of new sequences greatly improves the accuracy and robustness of the phylogenetic inference. A morphologically simple cell is likely the ancient form in Parabasalia as opposed to a cell with elaborate flagellar and cytoskeletal structures, which was defined as most basal in previous inferences. Nevertheless, the evolution of Parabasalia is complex owing to several independent multiplication and simplification events in

  6. The Yeast Actin Cytoskeleton: from Cellular Function to Biochemical Mechanism

    PubMed Central

    Moseley, James B.; Goode, Bruce L.

    2006-01-01

    All cells undergo rapid remodeling of their actin networks to regulate such critical processes as endocytosis, cytokinesis, cell polarity, and cell morphogenesis. These events are driven by the coordinated activities of a set of 20 to 30 highly conserved actin-associated proteins, in addition to many cell-specific actin-associated proteins and numerous upstream signaling molecules. The combined activities of these factors control with exquisite precision the spatial and temporal assembly of actin structures and ensure dynamic turnover of actin structures such that cells can rapidly alter their cytoskeletons in response to internal and external cues. One of the most exciting principles to emerge from the last decade of research on actin is that the assembly of architecturally diverse actin structures is governed by highly conserved machinery and mechanisms. With this realization, it has become apparent that pioneering efforts in budding yeast have contributed substantially to defining the universal mechanisms regulating actin dynamics in eukaryotes. In this review, we first describe the filamentous actin structures found in Saccharomyces cerevisiae (patches, cables, and rings) and their physiological functions, and then we discuss in detail the specific roles of actin-associated proteins and their biochemical mechanisms of action. PMID:16959963

  7. Predictive nucleation of crystals in small volumes and its consequences.

    PubMed

    Grossier, Romain; Hammadi, Zoubida; Morin, Roger; Veesler, Stéphane

    2011-07-01

    We propose another way of getting to the bottom of nucleation by using finite volume systems. Here we show, using a sharp tip, that a single nucleation event is launched as soon as the tip touches the supersaturated confined metastable solution. We thus control spatial and temporal location and demonstrate that confinement allows us to carry out predictive nucleation experiments. This control is a major step forward in understanding the factors influencing the nucleation process and its underlying physics.

  8. Actin Assembly at Model-Supported Lipid Bilayers

    PubMed Central

    Heath, George R.; Johnson, Benjamin R.G.; Olmsted, Peter D.; Connell, Simon D.; Evans, Stephen D.

    2013-01-01

    We report on the use of supported lipid bilayers to reveal dynamics of actin polymerization from a nonpolymerizing subphase via cationic phospholipids. Using varying fractions of charged lipid, lipid mobility, and buffer conditions, we show that dynamics at the nanoscale can be used to control the self-assembly of these structures. In the case of fluid-phase lipid bilayers, the actin adsorbs to form a uniform two-dimensional layer with complete surface coverage whereas gel-phase bilayers induce a network of randomly oriented actin filaments, of lower coverage. Reducing the pH increased the polymerization rate, the number of nucleation events, and the total coverage of actin. A model of the adsorption/diffusion process is developed to provide a description of the experimental data and shows that, in the case of fluid-phase bilayers, polymerization arises equally due to the adsorption and diffusion of surface-bound monomers and the addition of monomers directly from the solution phase. In contrast, in the case of gel-phase bilayers, polymerization is dominated by the addition of monomers from solution. In both cases, the filaments are stable for long times even when the G-actin is removed from the supernatant—making this a practical approach for creating stable lipid-actin systems via self-assembly. PMID:24268147

  9. Intranuclear Actin Regulates Osteogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Sen, Buer; Xie, Zhihui; Uzer, Gunes; Thompson, William R.; Styner, Maya; Wu, Xin; Rubin, Janet

    2016-01-01

    Depolymerization of the actin cytoskeleton induces nuclear trafficking of regulatory proteins and global effects on gene transcription. We here show that in mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), cytochalasin D treatment causes rapid cofilin-/importin-9-dependent transfer of G-actin into the nucleus. The continued presence of intranuclear actin, which forms rod-like structures that stain with phalloidin, is associated with induction of robust expression of the osteogenic genes osterix and osteocalcin in a Runx2-dependent manner, and leads to acquisition of osteogenic phenotype. Adipogenic differentiation also occurs, but to a lesser degree. Intranuclear actin leads to nuclear export of Yes-associated protein (YAP); maintenance of nuclear YAP inhibits Runx2 initiation of osteogenesis. Injection of cytochalasin into the tibial marrow space of live mice results in abundant bone formation within the space of 1 week. In sum, increased intranuclear actin forces MSC into osteogenic lineage through controlling Runx2 activity; this process may be useful for clinical objectives of forming bone. PMID:26140478

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-08-01

    Numerous cellular functions depend on actin filament (F-actin) disassembly. The best-characterized disassembly proteins, the ADF (actin-depolymerizing factor)/cofilins (encoded by the twinstar gene in Drosophila), 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 with 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 remodelling, 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

  11. Arabidopsis AtADF1 is functionally affected by mutations on actin binding sites.

    PubMed

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

    2013-03-01

    The plant actin depolymerizing factor (ADF) binds to both monomeric and filamentous actin, and is directly involved in the depolymerization of actin filaments. To better understand the actin binding sites of the Arabidopsis thaliana L. AtADF1, we generated mutants of AtADF1 and investigated their functions in vitro and in vivo. Analysis of mutants harboring amino acid substitutions revealed that charged residues (Arg98 and Lys100) located at the α-helix 3 and forming an actin binding site together with the N-terminus are essential for both G- and F-actin binding. The basic residues on the β-strand 5 (K82/A) and the α-helix 4 (R135/A, R137/A) form another actin binding site that is important for F-actin binding. Using transient expression of CFP-tagged AtADF1 mutant proteins in onion (Allium cepa) peel epidermal cells and transgenic Arabidopsis thaliana L. plants overexpressing these mutants, we analyzed how these mutant proteins regulate actin organization and affect seedling growth. Our results show that the ADF mutants with a lower affinity for actin filament binding can still be functional, unless the affinity for actin monomers is also affected. The G-actin binding activity of the ADF plays an essential role in actin binding, depolymerization of actin polymers, and therefore in the control of actin organization. PMID:23190411

  12. Structural and Biochemical Characterization of Two Binding Sites for Nucleation-promoting Factor WASp-VCA on Arp2/3 Complex

    SciTech Connect

    S Ti; C Jurgenson; B Nolen; T Pollard

    2011-12-31

    Actin-related protein (Arp) 2/3 complex mediates the formation of actin filament branches during endocytosis and at the leading edge of motile cells. The pathway of branch formation is ambiguous owing to uncertainty regarding the stoichiometry and location of VCA binding sites on Arp2/3 complex. Isothermal titration calorimetry showed that the CA motif from the C terminus of fission yeast WASP (Wsp1p) bound to fission yeast and bovine Arp2/3 complex with a stoichiometry of 2 to 1 and very different affinities for the two sites (K{sub d}s of 0.13 and 1.6 {micro}M for fission yeast Arp2/3 complex). Equilibrium binding, kinetic, and cross-linking experiments showed that (i) CA at high-affinity site 1 inhibited Arp2/3 complex binding to actin filaments, (ii) low-affinity site 2 had a higher affinity for CA when Arp2/3 complex was bound to actin filaments, and (iii) Arp2/3 complex had a much higher affinity for free CA than VCA cross-linked to an actin monomer. Crystal structures showed the C terminus of CA bound to the low-affinity site 2 on Arp3 of bovine Arp2/3 complex. The C helix is likely to bind to the barbed end groove of Arp3 in a position for VCA to deliver the first actin subunit to the daughter filament.

  13. Assembly and Turnover of Short Actin Filaments by the Formin INF2 and Profilin*

    PubMed Central

    Gurel, Pinar S.; A, Mu; Guo, Bingqian; Shu, Rui; Mierke, Dale F.; Higgs, Henry N.

    2015-01-01

    INF2 (inverted formin 2) is a formin protein with unique biochemical effects on actin. In addition to the common formin ability to accelerate actin nucleation and elongation, INF2 can also sever filaments and accelerate their depolymerization. Although we understand key attributes of INF2-mediated severing, we do not understand the mechanism by which INF2 accelerates depolymerization subsequent to severing. Here, we show that INF2 can create short filaments (<60 nm) that continuously turn over actin subunits through a combination of barbed end elongation, severing, and WH2 motif-mediated depolymerization. This pseudo-steady state condition occurs whether starting from actin filaments or monomers. The rate-limiting step of the cycle is nucleotide exchange of ADP for ATP on actin monomers after release from the INF2/actin complex. Profilin addition has two effects: 1) to accelerate filament turnover 6-fold by accelerating nucleotide exchange and 2) to shift the equilibrium toward polymerization, resulting in longer filaments. In sum, our findings show that the combination of multiple interactions of INF2 with actin can work in concert to increase the ATP turnover rate of actin. Depending on the ratio of INF2:actin, this increased flux can result in rapid filament depolymerization or maintenance of short filaments. We also show that high concentrations of cytochalasin D accelerate ATP turnover by actin but through a different mechanism from that of INF2. PMID:26124273

  14. Assembly and turnover of short actin filaments by the formin INF2 and profilin.

    PubMed

    Gurel, Pinar S; A, Mu; Guo, Bingqian; Shu, Rui; Mierke, Dale F; Higgs, Henry N

    2015-09-11

    INF2 (inverted formin 2) is a formin protein with unique biochemical effects on actin. In addition to the common formin ability to accelerate actin nucleation and elongation, INF2 can also sever filaments and accelerate their depolymerization. Although we understand key attributes of INF2-mediated severing, we do not understand the mechanism by which INF2 accelerates depolymerization subsequent to severing. Here, we show that INF2 can create short filaments (<60 nm) that continuously turn over actin subunits through a combination of barbed end elongation, severing, and WH2 motif-mediated depolymerization. This pseudo-steady state condition occurs whether starting from actin filaments or monomers. The rate-limiting step of the cycle is nucleotide exchange of ADP for ATP on actin monomers after release from the INF2/actin complex. Profilin addition has two effects: 1) to accelerate filament turnover 6-fold by accelerating nucleotide exchange and 2) to shift the equilibrium toward polymerization, resulting in longer filaments. In sum, our findings show that the combination of multiple interactions of INF2 with actin can work in concert to increase the ATP turnover rate of actin. Depending on the ratio of INF2:actin, this increased flux can result in rapid filament depolymerization or maintenance of short filaments. We also show that high concentrations of cytochalasin D accelerate ATP turnover by actin but through a different mechanism from that of INF2.

  15. Vinculin Is a Dually Regulated Actin Filament Barbed End-capping and Side-binding Protein

    PubMed Central

    Le Clainche, Christophe; Dwivedi, Satya Prakash; Didry, Dominique; Carlier, Marie-France

    2010-01-01

    The focal adhesion protein vinculin is an actin-binding protein involved in the mechanical coupling between the actin cytoskeleton and the extracellular matrix. An autoinhibitory interaction between the N-terminal head (Vh) and the C-terminal tail (Vt) of vinculin masks an actin filament side-binding domain in Vt. The binding of several proteins to Vh disrupts this intramolecular interaction and exposes the actin filament side-binding domain. Here, by combining kinetic assays and microscopy observations, we show that Vt inhibits actin polymerization by blocking the barbed ends of actin filaments. In low salt conditions, Vt nucleates actin filaments capped at their barbed ends. We determined that the interaction between vinculin and the barbed end is characterized by slow association and dissociation rate constants. This barbed end capping activity requires C-terminal amino acids of Vt that are dispensable for actin filament side binding. Like the side-binding domain, the capping domain of vinculin is masked by an autoinhibitory interaction between Vh and Vt. In contrast to the side-binding domain, the capping domain is not unmasked by the binding of a talin domain to Vh and requires the dissociation of an additional autoinhibitory interaction. Finally, we show that vinculin and the formin mDia1, which is involved in the processive elongation of actin filaments in focal adhesions, compete for actin filament barbed ends. PMID:20484056

  16. The role of actin binding proteins in epithelial morphogenesis: models based upon Listeria movement.

    PubMed

    Golsteyn, R M; Louvard, D; Friederich, E

    1997-10-01

    We summarize recent findings on the organization of the protein actin in eucaryotic cells. In particular we focus on how actin can be used to generate a vectorial force that is required for cell movement. These forces arise from protein molecules that recruit actin to the plasma membrane in such a manner that actin filaments extend outward from the cell body. This type of actin dependent force generation has been described in a nucleation-release model, which is one of several models currently being tested to explain actin dependent cell movement. Data in support of this model has arisen unexpectedly from studies of an intracellular bacteria, Listeria monocytogenes. This bacteria uses actin to propel itself during infection of eucaryotic cells. By studying Listeria movement, the roles of several eucaryotic actin interacting proteins have been identified. One of these is zyxin, a human protein that shares important structural and possibly functional properties with ActA, an actin dependent force generating protein of Listeria. We intend to test the function of these and other actin interacting proteins in a simplified system that should facilitate precise measurement of their properties of force generation in vitro.

  17. Prostaglandin E2 inhibits α-smooth muscle actin transcription during myofibroblast differentiation via distinct mechanisms of modulation of serum response factor and myocardin-related transcription factor-A.

    PubMed

    Penke, Loka R K; Huang, Steven K; White, Eric S; Peters-Golden, Marc

    2014-06-13

    Differentiation of lung fibroblasts into contractile protein-expressing myofibroblasts by transforming growth factor-β1 (TGF-β1) is a critical event in the pathogenesis of pulmonary fibrosis. Transcription of the contractile protein α-smooth muscle actin (α-SMA) is mediated by the transcription factor serum-response factor (SRF) along with its co-activator, myocardin-related transcription factor-A (MRTF-A). The endogenous lipid mediator prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) exerts anti-fibrotic effects, including the inhibition of myofibroblast differentiation. However, the mechanism by which PGE2 inhibits α-SMA expression is incompletely understood. Here, we show in normal lung fibroblasts that PGE2 reduced the nuclear accumulation of MRTF-A·SRF complexes and consequently inhibited α-SMA promoter activation. It did so both by independently inhibiting SRF gene expression and nuclear import of MRTF-A. We identified that p38 MAPK is critical for TGF-β1-induced SRF gene expression and that PGE2 inhibition of SRF expression is associated with its ability to inhibit p38 activation. Its inhibition of MRTF-A import occurs via activation of cofilin 1 and inactivation of vasodilator-stimulated phosphoprotein. Similar effects of PGE2 on SRF gene expression were observed in fibroblasts from the lungs of patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. Thus, PGE2 is the first substance described to prevent myofibroblast differentiation by disrupting, via distinct mechanisms, the actions of both SRF and MRTF-A.

  18. Actin filament bundling by fimbrin is important for endocytosis, cytokinesis, and polarization in fission yeast.

    PubMed

    Skau, Colleen T; Courson, David S; Bestul, Andrew J; Winkelman, Jonathan D; Rock, Ronald S; Sirotkin, Vladimir; Kovar, David R

    2011-07-29

    Through the coordinated action of diverse actin-binding proteins, cells simultaneously assemble actin filaments with distinct architectures and dynamics to drive different processes. Actin filament cross-linking proteins organize filaments into higher order networks, although the requirement of cross-linking activity in cells has largely been assumed rather than directly tested. Fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe assembles actin into three discrete structures: endocytic actin patches, polarizing actin cables, and the cytokinetic contractile ring. The fission yeast filament cross-linker fimbrin Fim1 primarily localizes to Arp2/3 complex-nucleated branched filaments of the actin patch and by a lesser amount to bundles of linear antiparallel filaments in the contractile ring. It is unclear whether Fim1 associates with bundles of parallel filaments in actin cables. We previously discovered that a principal role of Fim1 is to control localization of tropomyosin Cdc8, thereby facilitating cofilin-mediated filament turnover. Therefore, we hypothesized that the bundling ability of Fim1 is dispensable for actin patches but is important for the contractile ring and possibly actin cables. By directly visualizing actin filament assembly using total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy, we determined that Fim1 bundles filaments in both parallel and antiparallel orientations and efficiently bundles Arp2/3 complex-branched filaments in the absence but not the presence of actin capping protein. Examination of cells exclusively expressing a truncated version of Fim1 that can bind but not bundle actin filaments revealed that bundling activity of Fim1 is in fact important for all three actin structures. Therefore, fimbrin Fim1 has diverse roles as both a filament "gatekeeper" and as a filament cross-linker.

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

    SciTech Connect

    Daniel Szymanski

    2012-10-23

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

  20. Mechanisms of leiomodin 2-mediated regulation of actin filament in muscle cells.

    PubMed

    Chen, Xiaorui; Ni, Fengyun; Kondrashkina, Elena; Ma, Jianpeng; Wang, Qinghua

    2015-10-13

    Leiomodin (Lmod) is a class of potent tandem-G-actin-binding nucleators in muscle cells. Lmod mutations, deletion, or instability are linked to lethal nemaline myopathy. However, the lack of high-resolution structures of Lmod nucleators in action severely hampered our understanding of their essential cellular functions. Here we report the crystal structure of the actin-Lmod2162-495 nucleus. The structure contains two actin subunits connected by one Lmod2162-495 molecule in a non-filament-like conformation. Complementary functional studies suggest that the binding of Lmod2 stimulates ATP hydrolysis and accelerates actin nucleation and polymerization. The high level of conservation among Lmod proteins in sequence and functions suggests that the mechanistic insights of human Lmod2 uncovered here may aid in a molecular understanding of other Lmod proteins. Furthermore, our structural and mechanistic studies unraveled a previously unrecognized level of regulation in mammalian signal transduction mediated by certain tandem-G-actin-binding nucleators. PMID:26417072

  1. Biallelic truncating mutations in FMN2, encoding the actin-regulatory protein Formin 2, cause nonsyndromic autosomal-recessive intellectual disability.

    PubMed

    Law, Rosalind; Dixon-Salazar, Tracy; Jerber, Julie; Cai, Na; Abbasi, Ansar A; Zaki, Maha S; Mittal, Kirti; Gabriel, Stacey B; Rafiq, Muhammad Arshad; Khan, Valeed; Nguyen, Maria; Ali, Ghazanfar; Copeland, Brett; Scott, Eric; Vasli, Nasim; Mikhailov, Anna; Khan, Muhammad Nasim; Andrade, Danielle M; Ayaz, Muhammad; Ansar, Muhammad; Ayub, Muhammad; Vincent, John B; Gleeson, Joseph G

    2014-12-01

    Dendritic spines represent the major site of neuronal activity in the brain; they serve as the receiving point for neurotransmitters and undergo rapid activity-dependent morphological changes that correlate with learning and memory. Using a combination of homozygosity mapping and next-generation sequencing in two consanguineous families affected by nonsyndromic autosomal-recessive intellectual disability, we identified truncating mutations in formin 2 (FMN2), encoding a protein that belongs to the formin family of actin cytoskeleton nucleation factors and is highly expressed in the maturing brain. We found that FMN2 localizes to punctae along dendrites and that germline inactivation of mouse Fmn2 resulted in animals with decreased spine density; such mice were previously demonstrated to have a conditioned fear-learning defect. Furthermore, patient neural cells derived from induced pluripotent stem cells showed correlated decreased synaptic density. Thus, FMN2 mutations link intellectual disability either directly or indirectly to the regulation of actin-mediated synaptic spine density.

  2. Unconventional myosins, actin dynamics and endocytosis: a ménage à trois?

    PubMed

    Soldati, Thierry

    2003-06-01

    Ever since the discovery of class I myosins, the first nonmuscle myosins, about 30 years ago, the history of unconventional myosins has been linked to the organization and working of actin filaments. It slowly emerged from studies of class I myosins in lower eukaryotes that they are involved in mechanisms of endocytosis. Most interestingly, a flurry of recent findings assign a more active role to class I myosins in regulating the spatial and temporal organization of actin filament nucleation and elongation. The results highlight the multiple links between class I myosins and the major actin nucleator, the Arp2/3 complex, and its newly described activators. Two additional types of unconventional myosins, myosinIX, and Dictyostelium discoideum MyoM, have recently been tied to the signaling pathways controlling actin cytoskeleton remodeling. The present review surveys the links between these three classes of molecular motors and the complex cellular processes of endocytosis and actin dynamics, and concentrates on a working model accounting for the function of class I myosins via recruitment of the machinery responsible for actin nucleation and elongation. PMID:12753645

  3. How actin binds and assembles onto plasma membranes from Dictyostelium discoideum

    PubMed Central

    1988-01-01

    We have shown previously (Schwartz, M. A., and E. J. Luna. 1986. J. Cell Biol. 102: 2067-2075) that actin binds with positive cooperativity to plasma membranes from Dictyostelium discoideum. Actin is polymerized at the membrane surface even at concentrations well below the critical concentration for polymerization in solution. Low salt buffer that blocks actin polymerization in solution also prevents actin binding to membranes. To further explore the relationship between actin polymerization and binding to membranes, we prepared four chemically modified actins that appear to be incapable of polymerizing in solution. Three of these derivatives also lost their ability to bind to membranes. The fourth derivative (EF actin), in which histidine-40 is labeled with ethoxyformic anhydride, binds to membranes with reduced affinity. Binding curves exhibit positive cooperativity, and cross- linking experiments show that membrane-bound actin is multimeric. Thus, binding and polymerization are tightly coupled, and the ability of these membranes to polymerize actin is dramatically demonstrated. EF actin coassembles weakly with untreated actin in solution, but coassembles well on membranes. Binding by untreated actin and EF actin are mutually competitive, indicating that they bind to the same membrane sites. Hill plots indicate that an actin trimer is the minimum assembly state required for tight binding to membranes. The best explanation for our data is a model in which actin oligomers assemble by binding to clustered membrane sites with successive monomers on one side of the actin filament bound to the membrane. Individual binding affinities are expected to be low, but the overall actin-membrane avidity is high, due to multivalency. Our results imply that extracellular factors that cluster membrane proteins may create sites for the formation of actin nuclei and thus trigger actin polymerization in the cell. PMID:3392099

  4. 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

  5. Oscillatory increases in alkalinity anticipate growth and may regulate actin dynamics in pollen tubes of lily.

    PubMed

    Lovy-Wheeler, Alenka; Kunkel, Joseph G; Allwood, Ellen G; Hussey, Patrick J; Hepler, Peter K

    2006-09-01

    Lily (Lilium formosanum or Lilium longiflorum) pollen tubes, microinjected with a low concentration of the pH-sensitive dye bis-carboxyethyl carboxyfluorescein dextran, show oscillating pH changes in their apical domain relative to growth. An increase in pH in the apex precedes the fastest growth velocities, whereas a decline follows growth, suggesting a possible relationship between alkalinity and cell extension. A target for pH may be the actin cytoskeleton, because the apical cortical actin fringe resides in the same region as the alkaline band in lily pollen tubes and elongation requires actin polymerization. A pH-sensitive actin binding protein, actin-depolymerizing factor (ADF), together with actin-interacting protein (AIP) localize to the cortical actin fringe region. Modifying intracellular pH leads to reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton, especially in the apical domain. Acidification causes actin filament destabilization and inhibits growth by 80%. Upon complete growth inhibition, the actin fringe is the first actin cytoskeleton component to disappear. We propose that during normal growth, the pH increase in the alkaline band stimulates the fragmenting activity of ADF/AIP, which in turn generates more sites for actin polymerization. Increased actin polymerization supports faster growth rates and a proton influx, which inactivates ADF/AIP, decreases actin polymerization, and retards growth. As pH stabilizes and increases, the activity of ADF/AIP again increases, repeating the cycle of events. PMID:16920777

  6. Diamond nucleation using polyethene

    DOEpatents

    Morell, Gerardo; Makarov, Vladimir; Varshney, Deepak; Weiner, Brad

    2013-07-23

    The invention presents a simple, non-destructive and non-abrasive method of diamond nucleation using polyethene. It particularly describes the nucleation of diamond on an electrically viable substrate surface using polyethene via chemical vapor deposition (CVD) technique in a gaseous environment.

  7. Diamond Nucleation Using Polyethene

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morell, Gerardo (Inventor); Makarov, Vladimir (Inventor); Varshney, Deepak (Inventor); Weiner, Brad (Inventor)

    2013-01-01

    The invention presents a simple, non-destructive and non-abrasive method of diamond nucleation using polyethene. It particularly describes the nucleation of diamond on an electrically viable substrate surface using polyethene via chemical vapor deposition (CVD) technique in a gaseous environment.

  8. Direct simulations of homogeneous bubble nucleation: Agreement with classical nucleation theory and no local hot spots.

    PubMed

    Diemand, Jürg; Angélil, Raymond; Tanaka, Kyoko K; Tanaka, Hidekazu

    2014-11-01

    We present results from direct, large-scale molecular dynamics simulations of homogeneous bubble (liquid-to-vapor) nucleation. The simulations contain half a billion Lennard-Jones atoms and cover up to 56 million time steps. The unprecedented size of the simulated volumes allows us to resolve the nucleation and growth of many bubbles per run in simple direct micro-canonical simulations while the ambient pressure and temperature remain almost perfectly constant. We find bubble nucleation rates which are lower than in most of the previous, smaller simulations. It is widely believed that classical nucleation theory (CNT) generally underestimates bubble nucleation rates by very large factors. However, our measured rates are within two orders of magnitude of CNT predictions; only at very low temperatures does CNT underestimate the nucleation rate significantly. Introducing a small, positive Tolman length leads to very good agreement at all temperatures, as found in our recent vapor-to-liquid nucleation simulations. The critical bubbles sizes derived with the nucleation theorem agree well with the CNT predictions at all temperatures. Local hot spots reported in the literature are not seen: Regions where a bubble nucleation event will occur are not above the average temperature, and no correlation of temperature fluctuations with subsequent bubble formation is seen.

  9. Actin filament organization in the fish keratocyte lamellipodium

    PubMed Central

    1995-01-01

    From recent studies of locomoting fish keratocytes it was proposed that the dynamic turnover of actin filaments takes place by a nucleation- release mechanism, which predicts the existence of short (less than 0.5 microns) filaments throughout the lamellipodium (Theriot, J. A., and T. J. Mitchison. 1991. Nature (Lond.). 352:126-131). We have tested this model by investigating the structure of whole mount keratocyte cytoskeletons in the electron microscope and phalloidin-labeled cells, after various fixations, in the light microscope. Micrographs of negatively stained keratocyte cytoskeletons produced by Triton extraction showed that the actin filaments of the lamellipodium are organized to a first approximation in a two-dimensional orthogonal network with the filaments subtending an angle of around 45 degrees to the cell front. Actin filament fringes grown onto the front edge of keratocyte cytoskeletons by the addition of exogenous actin showed a uniform polarity when decorated with myosin subfragment-1, consistent with the fast growing ends of the actin filaments abutting the anterior edge. A steady drop in filament density was observed from the mid- region of the lamellipodium to the perinuclear zone and in images of the more posterior regions of lower filament density many of the actin filaments could be seen to be at least several microns in length. Quantitative analysis of the intensity distribution of fluorescent phalloidin staining across the lamellipodium revealed that the gradient of filament density as well as the absolute content of F-actin was dependent on the fixation method. In cells first fixed and then extracted with Triton, a steep gradient of phalloidin staining was observed from the front to the rear of the lamellipodium. With the protocol required to obtain the electron microscope images, namely Triton extraction followed by fixation, phalloidin staining was, significantly and preferentially reduced in the anterior part of the lamellipodium. This

  10. Viscosity of interfacial water regulates ice nucleation

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Kaiyong; Chen, Jing; Zhang, Qiaolan; Zhang, Yifan; Xu, Shun; Zhou, Xin; Cui, Dapeng; Wang, Jianjun Song, Yanlin

    2014-03-10

    Ice formation on solid surfaces is an important phenomenon in many fields, such as cloud formation and atmospheric icing, and a key factor for applications in preventing freezing. Here, we report temperature-dependent nucleation rates of ice for hydrophilic and hydrophobic surfaces. The results show that hydrophilic surface presents a lower ice nucleation rate. We develop a strategy to extract the thermodynamic parameters, J{sub 0} and Γ, in the context of classical nucleation theory. From the extracted J{sub 0} and Γ, we reveal the dominant role played by interfacial water. The results provide an insight into freezing mechanism on solid surfaces.

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

    PubMed

    Deng, Su; Bothe, Ingo; Baylies, Mary K

    2015-08-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

  13. WAVE binds Ena/VASP for enhanced Arp2/3 complex–based actin assembly

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

    The WAVE complex is the main activator of the Arp2/3 complex for actin filament nucleation and assembly in the lamellipodia of moving cells. Other important players in lamellipodial protrusion are Ena/VASP proteins, which enhance actin filament elongation. Here we examine the molecular coordination between the nucleating activity of the Arp2/3 complex and the elongating activity of Ena/VASP proteins for the formation of actin networks. Using an in vitro bead motility assay, we show that WAVE directly binds VASP, resulting in an increase in Arp2/3 complex–based actin assembly. We show that this interaction is important in vivo as well, for the formation of lamellipodia during the ventral enclosure event of Caenorhabditis elegans embryogenesis. Ena/VASP's ability to bind F-actin and profilin-complexed G-actin are important for its effect, whereas Ena/VASP tetramerization is not necessary. Our data are consistent with the idea that binding of Ena/VASP to WAVE potentiates Arp2/3 complex activity and lamellipodial actin assembly. PMID:25355952

  14. Cell biological analysis of mosquito midgut invasion: the defensive role of the actin-based ookinete hood.

    PubMed

    Schlegelmilch, Timm; Vlachou, Dina

    2013-12-01

    Successful completion of the Plasmodium lifecycle in the mosquito vector is critical for malaria transmission. It has been documented that the fate of Plasmodium in the mosquito ultimately depends on a fine interplay of molecular mosquito factors that act as parasite agonists and antagonists. Here we investigate whether the cellular responses of the invaded midgut epithelium can also determine the parasite fate and development. We show that the parasite hood, an actin-rich structure formed around the ookinete as it exits the epithelium, is a local epithelial defence reaction observed around 60% of invading parasites. The hood co-localizes with WASP, a promoter of actin filament nucleation, suggesting that it is an active reaction of the invaded cell against invading parasites. Importantly, depletion of WASP by RNAi leads to a significant reduction in hood formation, which is consistent with the previously documented role of this gene as a potent parasite antagonist. Indeed, in mosquitoes that are either genetically selected or manipulated by RNAi to be refractory to Plasmodium, most dead parasites exhibit an actin hood. In these mosquitoes, invading ookinetes are killed by lysis or melanization while exiting the midgut epithelium. Silencing WASP in these mosquitoes inhibits the formation of the hood and allows many parasites to develop to oocysts. These data in conjunction with fine microscopic observations suggest that the presence of the hood is linked to ookinete killing through lysis. PMID:24428832

  15. 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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-06-01

    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.

  17. Rapid non-equilibrium turnover fluidizes entangled F-actin solutions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McCall, Patrick M.; Kovar, David R.; Gardel, Margaret L.

    The actin cytoskeleton of living cells is a semiflexible polymer network which regulates cell division, motility, and morphogenesis by controlling cell shape. These complex shape-changing processes require both mechanical deformation and remodeling of the actin cytoskeleton. Molecular motors generate internal forces to drive deformation, while cytoskeletal remodeling is regulated by non-equilibrium polymer turnover. Although the mechanical properties of equilibrium actin filament (F-actin) networks are well-described by theories of semiflexible polymers, these theories do not incorporate the effects of non-equilibrium turnover. To address this experimentally, we developed a model system in which both the turnover rate and the length distribution of purified F-actin can be tuned independently at steady-state through the combined action of actin regulatory proteins. Specifically we tune the concentrations of cofilin, profilin, and formin to regulate F-actin severing, recycling, and nucleation, respectively. We find that the actin turnover rate can be tuned by cofilin up to 25-fold (31 +/- 2 subunits/sec/filament). Surprisingly, changes in turnover rate have no effect on the steady-state F-actin length distribution, which is instead set by formin concentration. Passive microrheology measurements show that increased turnover leads to striking fluidization in both entangled and crosslinked networks. Non-equilibrium turnover thus enables modulation of network mechanics, which impacts force transmission and material deformation.

  18. Synthetic polyamines: new compounds specific to actin dynamics for mammalian cell and fission yeast.

    PubMed

    Riveline, Daniel; Thiagarajan, Raghavan; Lehn, Jean-Marie; Carlier, Marie-France

    2014-01-01

    Actin is a major actor in the determination of cell shape. On the one hand, site-directed assembly/disassembly cycles of actin filaments drive protrusive force leading to lamellipodia and filopodia dynamics. Force produced by actin similarly contributes in membrane scission in endocytosis or Golgi remodeling. On the other hand, cellular processes like adhesion, immune synapse, cortex dynamics or cytokinesis are achieved by combining acto-myosin contractility and actin assembly in a complex and not fully understood manner. New chemical compounds are therefore needed to disentangle acto-myosin and actin dynamics. We have found that synthetic, cell permeant, short polyamines are promising new actin regulators in this context. They generate growth and stabilization of lamellipodia within minutes by slowing down the actin assembly/disassembly cycle and facilitating nucleation. We now report that these polyamines also slow down cytokinetic ring closure in fission yeast. This shows that these synthetic compounds are active also in yeasts, and these experiments specifically highlight that actin depolymerization is involved in the ring closure. Thus, synthetic polyamines appear to be potentially powerful agents in a quantitative approach to the role of actin in complex processes in cell biology, developmental biology and potentially cancer research.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-07-18

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

  20. Triggering signaling pathways using F-actin self-organization

    PubMed Central

    Colin, A.; Bonnemay, L.; Gayrard, C.; Gautier, J.; Gueroui, Z.

    2016-01-01

    The spatiotemporal organization of proteins within cells is essential for cell fate behavior. Although it is known that the cytoskeleton is vital for numerous cellular functions, it remains unclear how cytoskeletal activity can shape and control signaling pathways in space and time throughout the cell cytoplasm. Here we show that F-actin self-organization can trigger signaling pathways by engineering two novel properties of the microfilament self-organization: (1) the confinement of signaling proteins and (2) their scaffolding along actin polymers. Using in vitro reconstitutions of cellular functions, we found that both the confinement of nanoparticle-based signaling platforms powered by F-actin contractility and the scaffolding of engineered signaling proteins along actin microfilaments can drive a signaling switch. Using Ran-dependent microtubule nucleation, we found that F-actin dynamics promotes the robust assembly of microtubules. Our in vitro assay is a first step towards the development of novel bottom-up strategies to decipher the interplay between cytoskeleton spatial organization and signaling pathway activity. PMID:27698406

  1. The Switch-associated Protein 70 (SWAP-70) Bundles Actin Filaments and Contributes to the Regulation of F-actin Dynamics*

    PubMed Central

    Chacón-Martínez, Carlos Andrés; Kiessling, Nadine; Winterhoff, Moritz; Faix, Jan; Müller-Reichert, Thomas; Jessberger, Rolf

    2013-01-01

    Coordinated assembly and disassembly of actin into filaments and higher order structures such as stress fibers and lamellipodia are fundamental for cell migration and adhesion. However, the precise spatiotemporal regulation of F-actin structures is not completely understood. SWAP-70, a phosphatidylinositol 3,4,5-trisphosphate-interacting, F-actin-binding protein, participates in actin rearrangements through yet unknown mechanisms. Here, we show that SWAP-70 is an F-actin-bundling protein that oligomerizes through a Gln/Glu-rich stretch within a coiled-coil region. SWAP-70 bundles filaments in parallel and anti-parallel fashion through its C-terminal F-actin binding domain and delays dilution-induced F-actin depolymerization. We further demonstrate that SWAP-70 co-localizes and directly interacts with cofilin, an F-actin severing and depolymerization factor, and contributes to the regulation of cofilin activity in vivo. In line with these activities, upon stem cell factor stimulation, murine bone marrow-derived mast cells lacking SWAP-70 display aberrant regulation of F-actin and actin free barbed ends dynamics. Moreover, proper stem cell factor-dependent cofilin activation via dephosphorylation and subcellular redistribution into a detergent-resistant cytoskeletal compartment also require SWAP-70. Together, these findings reveal an important role of SWAP-70 in the dynamic spatiotemporal regulation of F-actin networks. PMID:23921380

  2. Nonequilibrium thermodynamics of nucleation

    SciTech Connect

    Schweizer, M.; Sagis, L. M. C.

    2014-12-14

    We present a novel approach to nucleation processes based on the GENERIC framework (general equation for the nonequilibrium reversible-irreversible coupling). Solely based on the GENERIC structure of time-evolution equations and thermodynamic consistency arguments of exchange processes between a metastable phase and a nucleating phase, we derive the fundamental dynamics for this phenomenon, based on continuous Fokker-Planck equations. We are readily able to treat non-isothermal nucleation even when the nucleating cores cannot be attributed intensive thermodynamic properties. In addition, we capture the dynamics of the time-dependent metastable phase being continuously expelled from the nucleating phase, and keep rigorous track of the volume corrections to the dynamics. Within our framework the definition of a thermodynamic nuclei temperature is manifest. For the special case of nucleation of a gas phase towards its vapor-liquid coexistence, we illustrate that our approach is capable of reproducing recent literature results obtained by more microscopic considerations for the suppression of the nucleation rate due to nonisothermal effects.

  3. Actin dynamics in living mammalian cells.

    PubMed

    Ballestrem, C; Wehrle-Haller, B; Imhof, B A

    1998-06-01

    The actin cytoskeleton maintains the cellular architecture and mediates cell movements. To explore actin cytoskeletal dynamics, the enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) was fused to human &bgr ;-actin. The fusion protein was incorporated into actin fibers which became depolymerized upon cytochalasin B treatment. This functional EGFP-actin construct enabled observation of the actin cytoskeleton in living cells by time lapse fluorescence microscopy. Stable expression of the construct was obtained in mammalian cell lines of different tissue origins. In stationary cells, actin rich, ring-like structured 'actin clouds' were observed in addition to stress fibers. These ruffle-like structures were found to be involved in the reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton. In migratory cells, EGFP-actin was found in the advancing lamellipodium. Immobile actin spots developed in the lamellipodium and thin actin fibers formed parallel to the leading edge. Thus EGFP-actin expressed in living cells unveiled structures involved in the dynamics of the actin cytoskeleton.

  4. The role of Arp2/3 in growth cone actin dynamics and guidance is substrate dependent.

    PubMed

    San Miguel-Ruiz, José E; Letourneau, Paul C

    2014-04-23

    During development extrinsic guidance cues modulate the peripheral actin network in growth cones to direct axons to their targets. We wanted to understand the role of the actin nucleator Arp2/3 in growth cone actin dynamics and guidance. Since growth cones migrate in association with diverse adhesive substrates during development, we probed the hypothesis that the functional significance of Arp2/3 is substrate dependent. We report that Arp2/3 inhibition led to a reduction in the number of filopodia and growth cone F-actin content on laminin and L1. However, we found substrate-dependent differences in growth cone motility, actin retrograde flow, and guidance after Arp2/3 inhibition, suggesting that its role, and perhaps that of other actin binding proteins, in growth cone motility is substrate dependent. PMID:24760849

  5. How Leiomodin and Tropomodulin use a common fold for different actin assembly functions

    PubMed Central

    Boczkowska, Malgorzata; Rebowski, Grzegorz; Kremneva, Elena; Lappalainen, Pekka; Dominguez, Roberto

    2015-01-01

    How proteins sharing a common fold have evolved different functions is a fundamental question in biology. Tropomodulins (Tmods) are prototypical actin filament pointed-end-capping proteins, whereas their homologues, Leiomodins (Lmods), are powerful filament nucleators. We show that Tmods and Lmods do not compete biochemically, and display similar but distinct localization in sarcomeres. Changes along the polypeptide chains of Tmods and Lmods exquisitely adapt their functions for capping versus nucleation. Tmods have alternating tropomyosin (TM)- and actin-binding sites (TMBS1, ABS1, TMBS2 and ABS2). Lmods additionally contain a C-terminal extension featuring an actin-binding WH2 domain. Unexpectedly, the different activities of Tmods and Lmods do not arise from the Lmod-specific extension. Instead, nucleation by Lmods depends on two major adaptations—the loss of pointed-end-capping elements present in Tmods and the specialization of the highly conserved ABS2 for recruitment of two or more actin subunits. The WH2 domain plays only an auxiliary role in nucleation. PMID:26370058

  6. Effect of radiation-induced segregation on void nucleation

    SciTech Connect

    Si-Ahmed, A.; Wolfer, W.G.

    1982-01-01

    The effect of segregation on void nucleation is investigated utilizing previous results for the capture efficiency of coated void. First, it is shown that any segregation, whether or not it leads to actual precipitation, leads to a modification of the bias factors for any sink. Small increases of either the lattice parameters or the elastic moduli result in reduced interstitial bias factors. Second, segregations to void embryos not only changes their capture efficiencies but also the surface energy. The effect of these changes on the void nucleation rate is studied in quantitative terms. When the segregation to voids results in an increase of the local lattice parameters by 0.4% or an increase of the shear modulus by 3%, the ultimate void nucleation rate is reached. Further increases no longer enhance void nucleation. Void nucleation without segregation effects would only be possible if the dislocation bias exceeds 50%. With segregation, void nucleation is not strongly dependent on the dislocation bias.

  7. A synthetic mechano-growth factor E peptide promotes rat tenocyte migration by lessening cell stiffness and increasing F-actin formation via the FAK-ERK1/2 signaling pathway

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, Bingyu; Luo, Qing; Mao, Xinjian; Xu, Baiyao; Yang, Li; Ju, Yang; Song, Guanbin

    2014-03-10

    Tendon injuries are common in sports and are frequent reasons for orthopedic consultations. The management of damaged tendons is one of the most challenging problems in orthopedics. Mechano-growth factor (MGF), a recently discovered growth repair factor, plays positive roles in tissue repair through the improvement of cell proliferation and migration and the protection of cells against injury-induced apoptosis. However, it remains unclear whether MGF has the potential to accelerate tendon repair. We used a scratch wound assay in this study to demonstrate that MGF-C25E (a synthetic mechano-growth factor E peptide) promotes the migration of rat tenocytes and that this promotion is accompanied by an elevation in the expression of the following signaling molecules: focal adhesion kinase (FAK) and extracellular signal regulated kinase1/2 (ERK1/2). Inhibitors of the FAK and ERK1/2 pathways inhibited the MGF-C25E-induced tenocyte migration, indicating that MGF-C25E promotes tenocyte migration through the FAK-ERK1/2 signaling pathway. The analysis of the mechanical properties showed that the Young's modulus of tenocytes was decreased through treatment of MGF-C25E, and an obvious formation of pseudopodia and F-actin was observed in MGF-C25E-treated tenocytes. The inhibition of the FAK or ERK1/2 signals restored the decrease in Young's modulus and inhibited the formation of pseudopodia and F-actin. Overall, our study demonstrated that MGF-C25E promotes rat tenocyte migration by lessening cell stiffness and increasing pseudopodia formation via the FAK-ERK1/2 signaling pathway. - Highlights: • Mechano-growth factor E peptide (MGF-C25E) promotes migration of rat tenocytes. • MGF-C25E activates the FAK-ERK1/2 pathway in rat tenocytes. • MGF-C25E induces the actin remodeling and the formation of pseudopodia, and decreases the stiffness in rat tenocytes. • MGF-C25E promotes tenocyte migration via altering stiffness and forming pseudopodia by the activation of the FAK-ERK1

  8. Homogeneous nucleation of nitrogen

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iland, Kristina; Wedekind, Jan; Wölk, Judith; Strey, Reinhard

    2009-03-01

    We investigated the homogeneous nucleation of nitrogen in a cryogenic expansion chamber [A. Fladerer and R. Strey, J. Chem. Phys. 124, 164710 (2006)]. Gas mixtures of nitrogen and helium as carrier gas were adiabatically expanded and cooled down from an initial temperature of 83 K until nucleation occurred. This onset was detected by constant angle light scattering at nitrogen vapor pressures of 1.3-14.2 kPa and temperatures of 42-54 K. An analytical fit function well describes the experimental onset pressures with an error of ±15%. We estimate the size of the critical nucleus with the Gibbs-Thomson equation yielding critical sizes of about 50 molecules at the lowest and 70 molecules at the highest temperature. In addition, we estimate the nucleation rate and compare it with nucleation theories. The predictions of classical nucleation theory (CNT) are 9 to 19 orders of magnitude below the experimental results and show a stronger temperature dependence. The Reguera-Reiss theory [Phys. Rev. Lett. 93, 165701 (2004)] predicts the correct temperature dependence at low temperatures and decreases the absolute deviation to 7-13 orders of magnitude. We present an empirical correction function to CNT describing our experimental results. These correction parameters are remarkably close to the ones of argon [Iland et al., J. Chem. Phys. 127, 154506 (2007)] and even those of water [J. Wölk and R. Strey, J. Phys. Chem. B 105, 11683 (2001)].

  9. β- and γ-Actins in the nucleus of human melanoma A375 cells.

    PubMed

    Migocka-Patrzałek, Marta; Makowiecka, Aleksandra; Nowak, Dorota; Mazur, Antonina J; Hofmann, Wilma A; Malicka-Błaszkiewicz, Maria

    2015-11-01

    Actin is a highly conserved protein that is expressed in all eukaryotic cells and has essential functions in the cytoplasm and the nucleus. Nuclear actin is involved in transcription by all three RNA polymerases, chromatin remodelling, RNA processing, intranuclear transport, nuclear export and in maintenance of the nuclear architecture. The nuclear actin level and polymerization state are important factors regulating nuclear processes such as transcription. Our study shows that, in contrast to the cytoplasm, the majority of endogenous nuclear actin is unpolymerized in human melanoma A375 cells. Most mammalian cells express the two non-muscle β- and γ-actin isoforms that differ in only four amino acids. Despite their sequence similarity, studies analysing the cytoplasmic functions of these isoforms demonstrated that β- and γ-actins show differences in localization and function. However, little is known about the involvement of the individual actin isoforms in nuclear processes. Here, we used the human melanoma A375 cell line to analyse actin isoforms in regard to their nuclear localization. We show that both β- and γ-non-muscle actin isoforms are present in nuclei of these cells. Immunolocalization studies demonstrate that both isoforms co-localize with RNA polymerase II and hnRNP U. However, we observe differences in the ratio of cytoplasmic to nuclear actin distribution between the isoforms. We show that β-actin has a significantly higher nucleus-to-cytoplasm ratio than γ-actin.

  10. Drosophila Homologues of Adenomatous Polyposis Coli (APC) and the Formin Diaphanous Collaborate by a Conserved Mechanism to Stimulate Actin Filament Assembly*

    PubMed Central

    Jaiswal, Richa; Stepanik, Vince; Rankova, Aneliya; Molinar, Olivia; Goode, Bruce L.; McCartney, Brooke M.

    2013-01-01

    Adenomatous polyposis coli (APC) is a large multidomain protein that regulates the cytoskeleton. Recently, it was shown that vertebrate APC through its Basic domain directly collaborates with the formin mDia1 to stimulate actin filament assembly in the presence of nucleation barriers. However, it has been unclear whether these activities extend to homologues of APC and Dia in other organisms. Drosophila APC and Dia are each required to promote actin furrow formation in the syncytial embryo, suggesting a potential collaboration in actin assembly, but low sequence homology between the Basic domains of Drosophila and vertebrate APC has left their functional and mechanistic parallels uncertain. To address this question, we purified Drosophila APC1 and Dia and determined their individual and combined effects on actin assembly using both bulk fluorescence assays and total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy. Our data show that APC1, similar to its vertebrate homologue, bound to actin monomers and nucleated and bundled filaments. Further, Drosophila Dia nucleated actin assembly and protected growing filament barbed ends from capping protein. Drosophila APC1 and Dia directly interacted and collaborated to promote actin assembly in the combined presence of profilin and capping protein. Thus, despite limited sequence homology, Drosophila and vertebrate APCs exhibit highly related activities and mechanisms and directly collaborate with formins. These results suggest that APC-Dia interactions in actin assembly are conserved and may underlie important in vivo functions in a broad range of animal phyla. PMID:23558679

  11. Colloids and Nucleation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ackerson, Bruce

    1997-01-01

    The objectives of the work funded under this grant were to develop a microphotographic technique and use it to monitor the nucleation and growth of crystals of hard colloidal spheres. Special attention is given to the possible need for microgravity studies in future experiments. A number of persons have been involved in this work. A masters student, Keith Davis, began the project and developed a sheet illumination apparatus and an image processing system for detection and analysis. His work on a segmentation program for image processing was sufficient for his master's research and has been published. A post doctoral student Bernie Olivier and a graduate student Yueming He, who originally suggested the sheet illumination, were funded by another source but along with Keith made photographic series of several samples (that had been made by Keith Davis). Data extraction has been done by Keith, Bernie, Yueming and two undergraduates employed on the grant. Results are published in Langmuir. These results describe the sheet lighting technique as one which illuminates not only the Bragg scattering crystal, but all the crystals. Thus, accurate crystal counts can be made for nucleation rate measurements. The strange crystal length scale reduction, observed in small angle light scattering (SALS) studies, following the initial nucleation and growth period, has been observed directly. The Bragg scattering (and dark) crystal size decreases in the crossover region. This could be an effect due to gravitational forces or due to over- compression of the crystal during growth. Direct observations indicate a complex morphology for the resulting hard sphere crystals. The crystal edges are fairly sharp but the crystals have a large degree of internal structure. This structure is a result of (unstable) growth and not aggregation. As yet unpublished work compares growth exponents data with data obtained by SALS. The nucleation rate density is determined over a broad volume fraction range

  12. The F-actin capping protein is required for hyphal growth and full virulence but is dispensable for septum formation in Botrytis cinerea.

    PubMed

    González-Rodríguez, Victoria E; Garrido, Carlos; Cantoral, Jesús M; Schumacher, Julia

    2016-10-01

    Filamentous (F-) actin is an integral part of the cytoskeleton allowing for cell growth, intracellular motility, and cytokinesis of eukaryotic cells. Its assembly from G-actin monomers and its disassembly are tightly regulated processes involving a number of actin-binding proteins (ABPs) such as F-actin nucleators and cross-linking proteins. F-actin capping protein (CP) is an alpha/beta heterodimer known from yeast and higher eukaryotes to bind to the fast growing ends of the actin filaments stabilizing them. In this study, we identified the orthologs of the two CP subunits, named BcCPA1 and BcCPB1, in the plant pathogenic fungus Botrytis cinerea and showed that the two proteins physically interact in a yeast two-hybrid approach. GFP-BcCPA1 fusion proteins were functional and localized to the assumed sites of F-actin accumulation, i.e. to the hyphal tips and the sites of actin ring formation. Deletion of bccpa1 had a profound effect on hyphal growth, morphogenesis, and virulence indicating the importance of F-actin capping for an intact actin cytoskeleton. As polarized growth - unlike septum formation - is impaired in the mutants, it can be concluded that the organization and/or localization of actin patches and cables are disturbed rather than the functionality of the actin rings.

  13. The F-actin capping protein is required for hyphal growth and full virulence but is dispensable for septum formation in Botrytis cinerea.

    PubMed

    González-Rodríguez, Victoria E; Garrido, Carlos; Cantoral, Jesús M; Schumacher, Julia

    2016-10-01

    Filamentous (F-) actin is an integral part of the cytoskeleton allowing for cell growth, intracellular motility, and cytokinesis of eukaryotic cells. Its assembly from G-actin monomers and its disassembly are tightly regulated processes involving a number of actin-binding proteins (ABPs) such as F-actin nucleators and cross-linking proteins. F-actin capping protein (CP) is an alpha/beta heterodimer known from yeast and higher eukaryotes to bind to the fast growing ends of the actin filaments stabilizing them. In this study, we identified the orthologs of the two CP subunits, named BcCPA1 and BcCPB1, in the plant pathogenic fungus Botrytis cinerea and showed that the two proteins physically interact in a yeast two-hybrid approach. GFP-BcCPA1 fusion proteins were functional and localized to the assumed sites of F-actin accumulation, i.e. to the hyphal tips and the sites of actin ring formation. Deletion of bccpa1 had a profound effect on hyphal growth, morphogenesis, and virulence indicating the importance of F-actin capping for an intact actin cytoskeleton. As polarized growth - unlike septum formation - is impaired in the mutants, it can be concluded that the organization and/or localization of actin patches and cables are disturbed rather than the functionality of the actin rings. PMID:27647239

  14. Nucleation of Ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Molinero, Valeria

    2009-03-01

    The freezing of water into ice is a ubiquitous transformation in nature, yet the microscopic mechanism of homogeneous nucleation of ice has not yet been elucidated. One of the reasons is that nucleation happens in time scales that are too fast for an experimental characterization and two slow for a systematic study with atomistic simulations. In this work we use coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulations with the monatomic model of water mW[1] to shed light into the mechanism of homogeneous nucleation of ice and its relationship to the thermodynamics of supercooled water. Cooling of bulk water produces either crystalline ice or low- density amorphous ice (LDA) depending on the quenching rate. We find that ice crystallization occurs faster at temperatures close to the liquid-liquid transition, defined as the point of maximum inflection of the density with respect to the temperature. At the liquid-liquid transition, the time scale of nucleation becomes comparable to the time scale of relaxation within the liquid phase, determining --effectively- the end of the metastable liquid state. Our results imply that no ultraviscous liquid water can exist at temperatures just above the much disputed glass transition of water. We discuss how the scenario is changed when water is in confinement, and the relationship of the mechanism of ice nucleation to that of other liquids that present the same phase behavior, silicon [2] and germanium [3]. [4pt] [1] Molinero, V. & Moore, E. B. Water modeled as an intermediate element between carbon and silicon. Journal of Physical Chemistry B (2008). Online at http://pubs.acs.org/cgi- bin/abstract.cgi/jpcbfk/asap/abs/jp805227c.html [0pt] [2] Molinero, V., Sastry, S. & Angell, C. A. Tuning of tetrahedrality in a silicon potential yields a series of monatomic (metal-like) glass formers of very high fragility. Physical Review Letters 97, 075701 (2006).

  15. Analysis of actinic flux profiles measured from an ozonesonde balloon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, P.; Allaart, M.; Knap, W. H.; Stammes, P.

    2015-04-01

    A green light sensor has been developed at KNMI to measure actinic flux profiles using an ozonesonde balloon. In total, 63 launches with ascending and descending profiles were performed between 2006 and 2010. The measured uncalibrated actinic flux profiles are analysed using the Doubling-Adding KNMI (DAK) radiative transfer model. Values of the cloud optical thickness (COT) along the flight track were taken from the Spinning Enhanced Visible and Infrared Imager (SEVIRI) Cloud Physical Properties (CPP) product. The impact of clouds on the actinic flux profile is evaluated on the basis of the cloud modification factor (CMF) at the cloud top and cloud base, which is the ratio between the actinic fluxes for cloudy and clear-sky scenes. The impact of clouds on the actinic flux is clearly detected: the largest enhancement occurs at the cloud top due to multiple scattering. The actinic flux decreases almost linearly from cloud top to cloud base. Above the cloud top the actinic flux also increases compared to clear-sky scenes. We find that clouds can increase the actinic flux to 2.3 times the clear-sky value at cloud top and decrease it to about 0.05 at cloud base. The relationship between CMF and COT agrees well with DAK simulations, except for a few outliers. Good agreement is found between the DAK-simulated actinic flux profiles and the observations for single-layer clouds in fully overcast scenes. The instrument is suitable for operational balloon measurements because of its simplicity and low cost. It is worth further developing the instrument and launching it together with atmospheric chemistry composition sensors.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    1999-10-01

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

  17. Single Filaments to Reveal the Multiple Flavors of Actin.

    PubMed

    Jégou, Antoine; Romet-Lemonne, Guillaume

    2016-05-24

    A number of key cell processes rely on specific assemblies of actin filaments, which are all constructed from nearly identical building blocks: the abundant and extremely conserved actin protein. A central question in the field is to understand how different filament networks can coexist and be regulated. Discoveries in science are often related to technical advances. Here, we focus on the ongoing single filament revolution and discuss how these techniques have greatly contributed to our understanding of actin assembly. In particular, we highlight how they have refined our understanding of the many protein-based regulatory mechanisms that modulate actin assembly. It is now becoming apparent that other factors give filaments a specific identity that determines which proteins will bind to them. We argue that single filament techniques will play an essential role in the coming years as we try to understand the many ways actin filaments can take different flavors and unveil how these flavors modulate the action of regulatory proteins. We discuss different factors known to make actin filaments distinguishable by regulatory proteins and speculate on their possible consequences.

  18. The rpg4-mediated resistance to wheat stem rust (Puccinia graminis) in barley (Hordeum vulgare) requires Rpg5, a second NBS-LRR gene, and an actin depolymerization factor.

    PubMed

    Wang, X; Richards, J; Gross, T; Druka, A; Kleinhofs, A; Steffenson, B; Acevedo, M; Brueggeman, R

    2013-04-01

    The rpg4 gene confers recessive resistance to several races of wheat stem rust (Puccinia graminis f. sp. tritici) and Rpg5 provides dominant resistance against isolates of the rye stem rust (P. graminis f. sp. secalis) in barley. The rpg4 and Rpg5 genes are tightly linked on chromosome 5H, and positional cloning using high-resolution populations clearly separated the genes, unambiguously identifying Rpg5; however, the identity of rpg4 remained unclear. High-resolution genotyping of critical recombinants at the rpg4/Rpg5 locus, designated here as rpg4-mediated resistance locus (RMRL) delimited two distinct yet tightly linked loci required for resistance, designated as RMRL1 and RMRL2. Utilizing virus-induced gene silencing, each gene at RMRL1, i.e., HvRga1 (a nucleotide-binding site leucine-rich repeat [NBS-LRR] domain gene), Rpg5 (an NBS-LRR-protein kinase domain gene), and HvAdf3 (an actin depolymerizing factor-like gene), was individually silenced followed by inoculation with P. graminis f. sp. tritici race QCCJ. Silencing each gene changed the reaction type from incompatible to compatible, indicating that all three genes are required for rpg4-mediated resistance. This stem rust resistance mechanism in barley follows the emerging theme of unrelated pairs of genetically linked NBS-LRR genes required for specific pathogen recognition and resistance. It also appears that actin cytoskeleton dynamics may play an important role in determining resistance against several races of stem rust in barley.

  19. Nucleation in small scale multicrystalline silicon ingots

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brynjulfsen, I.; Arnberg, L.; Autruffe, A.

    2012-12-01

    Small scale solidification experiments were performed in order to study nucleation mechanisms of solar cell silicon. Ingots were grown in a Bridgman furnace; with a high rate (5 cm/min), inducing dendrite-like grains; and at a slow rate (0.2 mm/min), simulating the common slow crystal growth process. Two types of silicon were used, polysilicon and compensated material. The results showed that for the early stages of silicon solidification, the compensated material behaves similar to the polysilicon. A high undercooling of 11±3 K was obtained for one of the fast cooled experiments. This suggests that Si3N4-coating is not the important factor for nucleation, but Si3N4-precipitates in the melt could contribute as inoculants. Grains with similar orientation were observed for both the solidification rates, which indicates that the most important issue for grain growth selection in PV silicon is control of the vertical growth, rather than nucleation substrates.

  20. Regulation of an Actin Spring

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tam, Barney; Shin, Jennifer; Brau, Ricardo; Lang, Matthew; Mahadevan, L.; Matsudaira, Paul

    2006-03-01

    To produce motion, cells rely on the conversion of potential energy into mechanical work. One such example is the dramatic process involving the acrosome reaction of Limulus sperm, whereby a 60 μm-long bundle of actin filaments straightens from a coiled conformation to extend out of the cell in five seconds. This cellular engine and the motion it produces represent a third type of actin-based motility fundamentally different from polymerization or myosin-driven processes. The motive force for this extension originates from stored elastic energy in the overtwisted, pre-formed coil---much like a compressed mechanical spring. When the actin bundle untwists, this energy is converted to mechanical work powering the extension. We report on experiments probing the regulation of this actin spring by extracellular calcium. We find that extracellular calcium needs to be present for the spring to activate, and that calcium regulates the velocity of the extension.

  1. 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.

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

    PubMed

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

    2010-01-01

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

  3. Three's company: the fission yeast actin cytoskeleton.

    PubMed

    Kovar, David R; Sirotkin, Vladimir; Lord, Matthew

    2011-03-01

    How the actin cytoskeleton assembles into different structures to drive diverse cellular processes is a fundamental cell biological question. In addition to orchestrating the appropriate combination of regulators and actin-binding proteins, different actin-based structures must insulate themselves from one another to maintain specificity within a crowded cytoplasm. Actin specification is particularly challenging in complex eukaryotes where a multitude of protein isoforms and actin structures operate within the same cell. Fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe possesses a single actin isoform that functions in three distinct structures throughout the cell cycle. In this review we explore recent studies in fission yeast that help unravel how different actin structures operate in cells.

  4. Bleb Nucleation through Membrane Peeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alert, Ricard; Casademunt, Jaume

    2016-02-01

    We study the nucleation of blebs, i.e., protrusions arising from a local detachment of the membrane from the cortex of a cell. Based on a simple model of elastic linkers with force-dependent kinetics, we show that bleb nucleation is governed by membrane peeling. By this mechanism, the growth or shrinkage of a detached membrane patch is completely determined by the linker kinetics, regardless of the energetic cost of the detachment. We predict the critical nucleation radius for membrane peeling and the corresponding effective energy barrier. These may be typically smaller than those predicted by classical nucleation theory, implying a much faster nucleation. We also perform simulations of a continuum stochastic model of membrane-cortex adhesion to obtain the statistics of bleb nucleation times as a function of the stress on the membrane. The determinant role of membrane peeling changes our understanding of bleb nucleation and opens new directions in the study of blebs.

  5. Ice nucleation in nature: supercooling point (SCP) measurements and the role of heterogeneous nucleation.

    PubMed

    Wilson, P W; Heneghan, A F; Haymet, A D J

    2003-02-01

    In biological systems, nucleation of ice from a supercooled aqueous solution is a stochastic process and always heterogeneous. The average time any solution may remain supercooled is determined only by the degree of supercooling and heterogeneous nucleation sites it encounters. Here we summarize the many and varied definitions of the so-called "supercooling point," also called the "temperature of crystallization" and the "nucleation temperature," and exhibit the natural, inherent width associated with this quantity. We describe a new method for accurate determination of the supercooling point, which takes into account the inherent statistical fluctuations of the value. We show further that many measurements on a single unchanging sample are required to make a statistically valid measure of the supercooling point. This raises an interesting difference in circumstances where such repeat measurements are inconvenient, or impossible, for example for live organism experiments. We also discuss the effect of solutes on this temperature of nucleation. Existing data appear to show that various solute species decrease the nucleation temperature somewhat more than the equivalent melting point depression. For non-ionic solutes the species appears not to be a significant factor whereas for ions the species does affect the level of decrease of the nucleation temperature.

  6. Nucleation in Synoptically Forced Cirrostratus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lin, R.-F.; Starr, D. OC.; Reichardt, J.; DeMott, P. J.

    2004-01-01

    Formation and evolution of cirrostratus in response to weak, uniform and constant synoptic forcing is simulated using a one-dimensional numerical model with explicit microphysics, in which the particle size distribution in each grid box is fully resolved. A series of tests of the model response to nucleation modes (homogeneous-freezing-only/heterogeneous nucleation) and heterogeneous nucleation parameters are performed. In the case studied here, nucleation is first activated in the prescribed moist layer. A continuous cloud-top nucleation zone with a depth depending on the vertical humidity gradient and one of the nucleation parameters is developed afterward. For the heterogeneous nucleation cases, intermittent nucleation zones in the mid-upper portion of the cloud form where the relative humidity is on the rise, because existent ice crystals do not uptake excess water vapor efficiently, and ice nuclei (IN) are available. Vertical resolution as fine as 1 m is required for realistic simulation of the homogeneous-freezing-only scenario, while the model resolution requirement is more relaxed in the cases where heterogeneous nucleation dominates. Bulk microphysical and optical properties are evaluated and compared. Ice particle number flux divergence, which is due to the vertical gradient of the gravity-induced particle sedimentation, is constantly and rapidly changing the local ice number concentration, even in the nucleation zone. When the depth of the nucleation zone is shallow, particle number concentration decreases rapidly as ice particles grow and sediment away from the nucleation zone. When the depth of the nucleation zone is large, a region of high ice number concentration can be sustained. The depth of nucleation zone is an important parameter to be considered in parametric treatments of ice cloud generation.

  7. A membrane cytoskeleton from Dictyostelium discoideum. I. Identification and partial characterization of an actin-binding activity

    PubMed Central

    1981-01-01

    Dictyostelium discoideum plasma membranes isolated by each of three procedures bind F-actin. The interactions between these membranes and actin are examined by a novel application of falling ball viscometry. Treating the membranes as multivalent actin-binding particles analogous to divalent actin-gelation factors, we observe large increases in viscosity (actin cross-linking) when membranes of depleted actin and myosin are incubated with rabbit skeletal muscle F-actin. Pre- extraction of peripheral membrane proteins with chaotropes or the inclusion of Triton X-100 during the assay does not appreciably diminish this actin cross-linking activity. Lipid vesicles, heat- denatured membranes, proteolyzed membranes, or membranes containing endogenous actin show minimal actin cross-linking activity. Heat- denatured, but not proteolyzed, membranes regain activity when assayed in the presence of Triton X-100. Thus, integral membrane proteins appear to be responsible for some or all of the actin cross-linking activity of D. discoideum membranes. In the absence of MgATP, Triton X- 100 extraction of isolated D. discoideum membranes results in a Triton- insoluble residue composed of actin, myosin, and associated membrane proteins. The inclusion of MgATP before and during Triton extraction greatly diminishes the amount of protein in the Triton-insoluble residue without appreciably altering its composition. Our results suggest the existence of a protein complex stabilized by actin and/or myosin (membrane cytoskeleton) associated with the D. discoideum plasma membrane. PMID:6894148

  8. Actin filament turnover drives leading edge growth during myelin sheath formation in the central nervous system.

    PubMed

    Nawaz, Schanila; Sánchez, Paula; Schmitt, Sebastian; Snaidero, Nicolas; Mitkovski, Mišo; Velte, Caroline; Brückner, Bastian R; Alexopoulos, Ioannis; Czopka, Tim; Jung, Sang Y; Rhee, Jeong S; Janshoff, Andreas; Witke, Walter; Schaap, Iwan A T; Lyons, David A; Simons, Mikael

    2015-07-27

    During CNS development, oligodendrocytes wrap their plasma membrane around axons to generate multilamellar myelin sheaths. To drive growth at the leading edge of myelin at the interface with the axon, mechanical forces are necessary, but the underlying mechanisms are not known. Using an interdisciplinary approach that combines morphological, genetic, and biophysical analyses, we identified a key role for actin filament network turnover in myelin growth. At the onset of myelin biogenesis, F-actin is redistributed to the leading edge, where its polymerization-based forces push out non-adhesive and motile protrusions. F-actin disassembly converts protrusions into sheets by reducing surface tension and in turn inducing membrane spreading and adhesion. We identified the actin depolymerizing factor ADF/cofilin1, which mediates high F-actin turnover rates, as an essential factor in this process. We propose that F-actin turnover is the driving force in myelin wrapping by regulating repetitive cycles of leading edge protrusion and spreading.

  9. Polymerization of Actin from Maize Pollen.

    PubMed Central

    Yen, L. F.; Liu, X.; Cai, S.

    1995-01-01

    Here we describe the in vitro polymerization of actin from maize (Zea mays) pollen. The purified actin from maize pollen reported in our previous paper (X. Liu, L.F. Yen [1992] Plant Physiol 99: 1151-1155) is biologically active. In the presence of ATP, KCl, and MgCl2 the purified pollen actin polymerized into filaments. During polymerization the spectra of absorbance at 232 nm increased gradually. Polymerization of pollen actin was evidently accompanied by an increase in viscosity of the pollen actin solution. Also, the specific viscosity of pollen F-actin increased in a concentration-dependent manner. The ultraviolet difference spectrum of pollen actin is very similar to that of rabbit muscle actin. The activity of myosin ATPase from rabbit muscle was activated 7-fold by the polymerized pollen actin (F-actin). The actin filaments were visualized under the electron microscope as doubly wound strands of 7 nm diameter. If cytochalasin B was added before staining, no actin filaments were observed. When actin filaments were treated with rabbit heavy meromyosin, the actin filaments were decorated with an arrowhead structure. These results imply that there is much similarity between pollen and muscle actin. PMID:12228343

  10. Yeast Rsp5 ubiquitin ligase affects the actin cytoskeleton in vivo and in vitro.

    PubMed

    Kaminska, Joanna; Spiess, Matthias; Stawiecka-Mirota, Marta; Monkaityte, Rasa; Haguenauer-Tsapis, Rosine; Urban-Grimal, Daniele; Winsor, Barbara; Zoladek, Teresa

    2011-12-01

    Yeast Rsp5 ubiquitin ligase is involved in several cellular processes, including endocytosis. Actin patches are sites of endocytosis, a process involving actin assembly and disassembly. Here we show Rsp5 localization in cortical patches and demonstrate its involvement in actin cytoskeleton organization and dynamics. We found that the Rsp5-F1-GFP2 N-terminal fragment and full length GFP-Rsp5 were recruited to peripheral patches that temporarily co-localized with Abp1-mCherry, a marker of actin patches. Actin cytoskeleton organization was defective in a strain lacking RSP5 or overexpressing RSP5, and this phenotype was accompanied by morphological abnormalities. Overexpression of RSP5 caused hypersensitivity of cells to Latrunculin A, an actin-depolymerizing drug and was toxic to cells lacking Las17, an activator of actin nucleation. Moreover, Rsp5 was required for efficient actin polymerization in a whole cell extract based in vitro system. Rsp5 interacted with Las17 and Las17-binding proteins, Lsb1 and Lsb2, in a GST-Rsp5-WW2/3 pull down assay. Rsp5 ubiquitinated Lsb1-HA and Lsb2-HA without directing them for degradation. Overexpression of RSP5 increased the cellular level of HA-Las17 in wild type and in lsb1Δ lsb2Δ strains in which the basal level of Las17 was already elevated. This increase was prevented in a strain devoid of Las17-binding protein Sla1 which is also a target of Rsp5 ubiquitination. Thus, Rsp5 together with Lsb1, Lsb2 and Sla1 regulate the level of Las17, an important activator of actin polymerization. PMID:22000681

  11. On the Ice Nucleation Spectrum

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Barahona, D.

    2012-01-01

    This work presents a novel formulation of the ice nucleation spectrum, i.e. the function relating the ice crystal concentration to cloud formation conditions and aerosol properties. The new formulation is physically-based and explicitly accounts for the dependency of the ice crystal concentration on temperature, supersaturation, cooling rate, and particle size, surface area and composition. This is achieved by introducing the concepts of ice nucleation coefficient (the number of ice germs present in a particle) and nucleation probability dispersion function (the distribution of ice nucleation coefficients within the aerosol population). The new formulation is used to generate ice nucleation parameterizations for the homogeneous freezing of cloud droplets and the heterogeneous deposition ice nucleation on dust and soot ice nuclei. For homogeneous freezing, it was found that by increasing the dispersion in the droplet volume distribution the fraction of supercooled droplets in the population increases. For heterogeneous ice nucleation the new formulation consistently describes singular and stochastic behavior within a single framework. Using a fundamentally stochastic approach, both cooling rate independence and constancy of the ice nucleation fraction over time, features typically associated with singular behavior, were reproduced. Analysis of the temporal dependency of the ice nucleation spectrum suggested that experimental methods that measure the ice nucleation fraction over few seconds would tend to underestimate the ice nuclei concentration. It is shown that inferring the aerosol heterogeneous ice nucleation properties from measurements of the onset supersaturation and temperature may carry significant error as the variability in ice nucleation properties within the aerosol population is not accounted for. This work provides a simple and rigorous ice nucleation framework where theoretical predictions, laboratory measurements and field campaign data can be

  12. Cavitation Bubble Nucleation by Energetic Particles

    SciTech Connect

    West, C.D.

    1998-12-01

    In the early sixties, experimental measurements using a bubble chamber confirmed quantitatively the thermal spike theory of bubble nucleation by energetic particles: the energy of the slow, heavy alpha decay recoils used in those experiments matched the calculated bubble nucleation energy to within a few percent. It was a triumph, but was soon to be followed by a puzzle. Within a couple of years, experiments on similar liquids, but well below their normal boiling points, placed under tensile stress showed that the calculated bubble nucleation energy was an order of magnitude less than the recoil energy. Why should the theory work so well in the one case and so badly in the other? How did the liquid, or the recoil particle, "know" the difference between the two experiments? Another mathematical model of the same physical process, introduced in 1967, showed qualitatively why different analyses would be needed for liquids with high and low vapor pressures under positive or negative pressures. But, the quantitative agreement between the calculated nucleation energy and the recoil energy was still poor--the former being smaller by a factor of two to three. In this report, the 1967 analysis is extended and refined: the qualitative understanding of the difference between positive and negative pressure nucleation, "boiling" and "cavitation" respectively, is retained, and agreement between the negative pressure calculated to be needed for nucleation and the energy calculated to be available is much improved. A plot of the calculated negative pressure needed to induce bubble formation against the measured value now has a slope of 1.0, although there is still considerable scatter in the individual points.

  13. Genome-wide RNAi screen for nuclear actin reveals a network of cofilin regulators

    PubMed Central

    Dopie, Joseph; Rajakylä, Eeva K.; Joensuu, Merja S.; Huet, Guillaume; Ferrantelli, Evelina; Xie, Tiao; Jäälinoja, Harri; Jokitalo, Eija; Vartiainen, Maria K.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Nuclear actin plays an important role in many processes that regulate gene expression. Cytoplasmic actin dynamics are tightly controlled by numerous actin-binding proteins, but regulation of nuclear actin has remained unclear. Here, we performed a genome-wide RNA interference (RNAi) screen in Drosophila cells to identify proteins that influence either nuclear polymerization or import of actin. We validate 19 factors as specific hits, and show that Chinmo (known as Bach2 in mammals), SNF4Aγ (Prkag1 in mammals) and Rab18 play a role in nuclear localization of actin in both fly and mammalian cells. We identify several new regulators of cofilin activity, and characterize modulators of both cofilin kinases and phosphatase. For example, Chinmo/Bach2, which regulates nuclear actin levels also in vivo, maintains active cofilin by repressing the expression of the kinase Cdi (Tesk in mammals). Finally, we show that Nup98 and lamin are candidates for regulating nuclear actin polymerization. Our screen therefore reveals new aspects of actin regulation and links nuclear actin to many cellular processes. PMID:26021350

  14. Mechanical coupling between transsynaptic N-cadherin adhesions and actin flow stabilizes dendritic spines

    PubMed Central

    Chazeau, Anaël; Garcia, Mikael; Czöndör, Katalin; Perrais, David; Tessier, Béatrice; Giannone, Grégory; Thoumine, Olivier

    2015-01-01

    The morphology of neuronal dendritic spines is a critical indicator of synaptic function. It is regulated by several factors, including the intracellular actin/myosin cytoskeleton and transcellular N-cadherin adhesions. To examine the mechanical relationship between these molecular components, we performed quantitative live-imaging experiments in primary hippocampal neurons. We found that actin turnover and structural motility were lower in dendritic spines than in immature filopodia and increased upon expression of a nonadhesive N-cadherin mutant, resulting in an inverse relationship between spine motility and actin enrichment. Furthermore, the pharmacological stimulation of myosin II induced the rearward motion of actin structures in spines, showing that myosin II exerts tension on the actin network. Strikingly, the formation of stable, spine-like structures enriched in actin was induced at contacts between dendritic filopodia and N-cadherin–coated beads or micropatterns. Finally, computer simulations of actin dynamics mimicked various experimental conditions, pointing to the actin flow rate as an important parameter controlling actin enrichment in dendritic spines. Together these data demonstrate that a clutch-like mechanism between N-cadherin adhesions and the actin flow underlies the stabilization of dendritic filopodia into mature spines, a mechanism that may have important implications in synapse initiation, maturation, and plasticity in the developing brain. PMID:25568337

  15. Genome-wide RNAi screen for nuclear actin reveals a network of cofilin regulators.

    PubMed

    Dopie, Joseph; Rajakylä, Eeva K; Joensuu, Merja S; Huet, Guillaume; Ferrantelli, Evelina; Xie, Tiao; Jäälinoja, Harri; Jokitalo, Eija; Vartiainen, Maria K

    2015-07-01

    Nuclear actin plays an important role in many processes that regulate gene expression. Cytoplasmic actin dynamics are tightly controlled by numerous actin-binding proteins, but regulation of nuclear actin has remained unclear. Here, we performed a genome-wide RNA interference (RNAi) screen in Drosophila cells to identify proteins that influence either nuclear polymerization or import of actin. We validate 19 factors as specific hits, and show that Chinmo (known as Bach2 in mammals), SNF4Aγ (Prkag1 in mammals) and Rab18 play a role in nuclear localization of actin in both fly and mammalian cells. We identify several new regulators of cofilin activity, and characterize modulators of both cofilin kinases and phosphatase. For example, Chinmo/Bach2, which regulates nuclear actin levels also in vivo, maintains active cofilin by repressing the expression of the kinase Cdi (Tesk in mammals). Finally, we show that Nup98 and lamin are candidates for regulating nuclear actin polymerization. Our screen therefore reveals new aspects of actin regulation and links nuclear actin to many cellular processes.

  16. Transient nucleation in condensed systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kelton, K. F.; Greer, A. L.; Thompson, C. V.

    1983-01-01

    Using classical nucleation theory we consider transient nucleation occurring in a one-component, condensed system under isothermal conditions. We obtain an exact closed-form expression for the time dependent cluster populations. In addition, a more versatile approach is developed: a numerical simulation technique which models directly the reactions by which clusters are produced. This simulation demonstrates the evolution of cluster populations and nucleation rate in the transient regime. Results from the simulation are verified by comparison with exact analytical solutions for the steady state. Experimental methods for measuring transient nucleation are assessed, and it is demonstrated that the observed behavior depends on the method used. The effect of preexisting cluster distributions is studied. Previous analytical and numerical treatments of transient nucleation are compared to the solutions obtained from the simulation. The simple expressions of Kashchiev are shown to give good descriptions of the nucleation behavior.

  17. Computational spatiotemporal analysis identifies WAVE2 and Cofilin as joint regulators of costimulation-mediated T cell actin dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Roybal, Kole T.; Buck, Taráz E.; Ruan, Xiongtao; Cho, Baek Hwan; Clark, Danielle J.; Ambler, Rachel; Tunbridge, Helen M.; Zhang, Jianwei; Verkade, Paul; Wülfing, Christoph; Murphy, Robert F.

    2016-01-01

    Fluorescence microscopy is one of the most important tools in cell biology research and it provides spatial and temporal information to investigate regulatory systems inside cells. This technique can generate data in the form of signal intensities at thousands of positions resolved inside individual live cells; however, given extensive cell-to-cell variation, methods do not currently exist to assemble these data into three- or four-dimensional maps of protein concentration that can be compared across different cells and conditions. Here, we have developed one such method and applied it to investigate actin dynamics in T cell activation. Antigen recognition in T cells by the T cell receptor (TCR) is amplified by engagement of the costimulatory receptor CD28 and we have determined how CD28 modulates actin dynamics. We imaged actin and eight core actin regulators under conditions where CD28 in the context of a strong TCR signal was engaged or blocked to yield over a thousand movies. Our computational analysis identified diminished recruitment of the activator of actin nucleation WAVE2 and the actin severing protein cofilin to F-actin as the dominant difference upon costimulation blockade. Reconstitution of WAVE2 and cofilin activity restored the defect in actin signaling dynamics upon costimulation blockade. Thus we have developed and validated an approach to quantify protein distributions in time and space for analysis of complex regulatory systems. PMID:27095595

  18. A Combination of Actin Treadmilling and Cross-Linking Drives Contraction of Random Actomyosin Arrays.

    PubMed

    Oelz, Dietmar B; Rubinstein, Boris Y; Mogilner, Alex

    2015-11-01

    We investigate computationally the self-organization and contraction of an initially random actomyosin ring. In the framework of a detailed physical model for a ring of cross-linked actin filaments and myosin-II clusters, we derive the force balance equations and solve them numerically. We find that to contract, actin filaments have to treadmill and to be sufficiently cross linked, and myosin has to be processive. The simulations reveal how contraction scales with mechanochemical parameters. For example, they show that the ring made of longer filaments generates greater force but contracts slower. The model predicts that the ring contracts with a constant rate proportional to the initial ring radius if either myosin is released from the ring during contraction and actin filaments shorten, or if myosin is retained in the ring, while the actin filament number decreases. We demonstrate that a balance of actin nucleation and compression-dependent disassembly can also sustain contraction. Finally, the model demonstrates that with time pattern formation takes place in the ring, worsening the contractile process. The more random the actin dynamics are, the higher the contractility will be. PMID:26536259

  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. A detailed study of ice nucleation by feldspar minerals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Whale, T. F.; Murray, B. J.; Wilson, T. W.; Carpenter, M. A.; Harrison, A.; Holden, M. A.; Vergara Temprado, J.; Morris, J.; O'Sullivan, D.

    2015-12-01

    Immersion mode heterogeneous ice nucleation plays a crucial role in controlling the composition of mixed phase clouds, which contain both supercooled liquid water and ice particles. The amount of ice in mixed phase clouds can affect cloud particle size, lifetime and extent and so affects radiative properties and precipitation. Feldspar minerals are probably the most important minerals for ice nucleation in mixed phase clouds because they nucleate ice more efficiently than other components of atmospheric mineral dust (Atkinson et al. 2013). The feldspar class of minerals is complex, containing numerous chemical compositions, several crystal polymorphs and wide variations in microscopic structure. Here we present the results of a study into ice nucleation by a wide range of different feldspars. We found that, in general, alkali feldspars nucleate ice more efficiently than plagioclase feldspars. However, we also found that particular alkali feldspars nucleate ice relatively inefficiently, suggesting that chemical composition is not the only important factor that dictates the ice nucleation efficiency of feldspar minerals. Ice nucleation by feldspar is described well by the singular model and is probably site specific in nature. The alkali feldspars that do not nucleate ice efficiently possess relatively homogenous structure on the micrometre scale suggesting that the important sites for nucleation are related to surface topography. Ice nucleation active site densities for the majority of tested alkali feldspars are similar to those found by Atkinson et al (2013), meaning that the validity of global aerosol modelling conducted in that study is not affected. Additionally, we have found that ice nucleation by feldspars is strongly influenced, both positively and negatively, by the solute content of droplets. Most other nucleants we have tested are unaffected by solutes. This provides insight into the mechanism of ice nucleation by feldspars and could be of importance

  1. Plant pathogenic bacteria target the actin microfilament network involved in the trafficking of disease defense components.

    PubMed

    Jelenska, Joanna; Kang, Yongsung; Greenberg, Jean T

    2014-01-01

    Cells of infected organisms transport disease defense-related molecules along actin filaments to deliver them to their sites of action to combat the pathogen. To accommodate higher demand for intracellular traffic, plant F-actin density increases transiently during infection or treatment of Arabidopsis with pathogen-associated molecules. Many animal and plant pathogens interfere with actin polymerization and depolymerization to avoid immune responses. Pseudomonas syringae, a plant extracellular pathogen, injects HopW1 effector into host cells to disrupt the actin cytoskeleton and reduce vesicle movement in order to elude defense responses. In some Arabidopsis accessions, however, HopW1 is recognized and causes resistance via an actin-independent mechanism. HopW1 targets isoform 7 of vegetative actin (ACT7) that is regulated by phytohormones and environmental factors. We hypothesize that dynamic changes of ACT7 filaments are involved in plant immunity. PMID:25551177

  2. Intragranular ferrite nucleation in medium-carbon vanadium steels

    SciTech Connect

    Ishikawa, Fusao; Takahashi, Toshihiko ); Ochi, Tatsurou . Muroran R D Lab.)

    1994-05-01

    In this study, the mechanism of intragranular ferrite nucleation is investigated. It is found that intragranular ferrite idiomorphs'' nucleate at vanadium nitrides which precipitate at manganese sulfide particles during cooling in the austenite region. It is observed that intragranular ferrite has the Baker-Nutting orientation relationship with vanadium nitride which precipitated at manganese sulfide. According to classical nucleation theory, the proeutectoid ferrite nucleation rate depends on the following factors: (1) the driving free energy for ferrite nucleation, (2) the diffusivity of carbon atoms in austenite, and (3) the increase in the interfacial energy associated with ferrite nucleation. In the Baker-Nutting orientation relationship, the lattice mismatch across the habit planes is likely to be very small. Depleted zones of solute atoms such as vanadium are assumed to be formed in the austenite matrix around precipitates. The effect of the depleted zones on factors (1) and (2) is estimated thermodynamically and it is proved that those effects are negligibly small. Thus, the authors conclude that the most important factor in nucleation kinetics of intragranular ferrite is the formation of precipitates which can develop coherent, low energy interfaces with ferrite.

  3. 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.

  4. Nucleation of nuclear bodies.

    PubMed

    Dundr, Miroslav

    2013-01-01

    The nucleus is a complex organelle containing numerous highly dynamic, structurally stable domains and bodies, harboring functions that have only begun to be defined. However, the molecular mechanisms for their formation are still poorly understood. Recently it has been shown that a nuclear body can form de novo by self-organization. But little is known regarding what triggers the formation of a nuclear body and how subsequent assembly steps are orchestrated. Nuclear bodies are frequently associated with specific active gene loci that directly contribute to their formation. Both coding and noncoding RNAs can initiate the assembly of nuclear bodies with which they are physiologically associated. Thus, the formation of nuclear bodies occurs via recruitment and consequent accumulation of resident proteins in the nuclear bodies by nucleating RNA acting as a seeder. In this chapter I describe how to set up an experimental cell system to probe de novo biogenesis of a nuclear body by nucleating RNA and nuclear body components tethered on chromatin. PMID:23980018

  5. 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.

  6. Force-velocity relation for actin-polymerization-driven motility from Brownian dynamics simulations.

    PubMed

    Lee, Kun-Chun; Liu, Andrea J

    2009-09-01

    We report numerical simulation results for the force-velocity relation for actin-polymerization-driven motility. We use Brownian dynamics to solve a physically consistent formulation of the dendritic nucleation model with semiflexible filaments that self-assemble and push a disk. We find that at small loads, the disk speed is independent of load, whereas at high loads, the speed decreases and vanishes at a characteristic stall pressure. Our results demonstrate that at small loads, the velocity is controlled by the reaction rates, whereas at high loads the stall pressure is determined by the mechanical properties of the branched actin network. The behavior is consistent with experiments and with our recently proposed self-diffusiophoretic mechanism for actin-polymerization-driven motility. New in vitro experiments to measure the force-velocity relation are proposed.

  7. Identification and Characterization of a Small Molecule Inhibitor of Formin-Mediated Actin Assembly

    PubMed Central

    Rizvi, Syed A.; Neidt, Erin M.; Cui, Jiayue; Feiger, Zach; Skau, Colleen T.; Gardel, Margaret L.; Kozmin, Sergey A.; Kovar, David R.

    2009-01-01

    SUMMARY Formins stimulate actin filament assembly for fundamental cellular processes including division, adhesion, establishing polarity and motility. A formin inhibitor would be useful because most cells express multiple formins whose functions are not known, and because metastatic tumor formation depends upon the deregulation of formin-dependent processes. We identified a general small molecule inhibitor of formin homology 2 domains (SMIFH2) by screening compounds for the ability to prevent formin-mediated actin assembly in vitro. SMIFH2 targets formins from evolutionarily diverse organisms including yeast, nematode worm and mice, with a half-maximal inhibitor concentration of ~5 to 15 μM. SMIFH2 prevents both formin nucleation and processive barbed-end elongation, and decreases formin’s affinity for the barbed end. Furthermore, low micromolar concentrations of SMIFH2 disrupt formin-dependent, but not Arp2/3 complex-dependent, actin cytoskeletal structures in fission yeast and mammalian NIH 3T3 fibroblasts. PMID:19942139

  8. F-actin mechanics control spindle centring in the mouse zygote

    PubMed Central

    Chaigne, Agathe; Campillo, Clément; Voituriez, Raphaël; Gov, Nir S.; Sykes, Cécile; Verlhac, Marie-Hélène; Terret, Marie-Emilie

    2016-01-01

    Mitotic spindle position relies on interactions between astral microtubules nucleated by centrosomes and a rigid cortex. Some cells, such as mouse oocytes, do not possess centrosomes and astral microtubules. These cells rely only on actin and on a soft cortex to position their spindle off-centre and undergo asymmetric divisions. While the first mouse embryonic division also occurs in the absence of centrosomes, it is symmetric and not much is known on how the spindle is positioned at the exact cell centre. Using interdisciplinary approaches, we demonstrate that zygotic spindle positioning follows a three-step process: (1) coarse centring of pronuclei relying on the dynamics of an F-actin/Myosin-Vb meshwork; (2) fine centring of the metaphase plate depending on a high cortical tension; (3) passive maintenance at the cell centre. Altogether, we show that F-actin-dependent mechanics operate the switch between asymmetric to symmetric division required at the oocyte to embryo transition. PMID:26727405

  9. F-actin mechanics control spindle centring in the mouse zygote

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chaigne, Agathe; Campillo, Clément; Voituriez, Raphaël; Gov, Nir S.; Sykes, Cécile; Verlhac, Marie-Hélène; Terret, Marie-Emilie

    2016-01-01

    Mitotic spindle position relies on interactions between astral microtubules nucleated by centrosomes and a rigid cortex. Some cells, such as mouse oocytes, do not possess centrosomes and astral microtubules. These cells rely only on actin and on a soft cortex to position their spindle off-centre and undergo asymmetric divisions. While the first mouse embryonic division also occurs in the absence of centrosomes, it is symmetric and not much is known on how the spindle is positioned at the exact cell centre. Using interdisciplinary approaches, we demonstrate that zygotic spindle positioning follows a three-step process: (1) coarse centring of pronuclei relying on the dynamics of an F-actin/Myosin-Vb meshwork; (2) fine centring of the metaphase plate depending on a high cortical tension; (3) passive maintenance at the cell centre. Altogether, we show that F-actin-dependent mechanics operate the switch between asymmetric to symmetric division required at the oocyte to embryo transition.

  10. F-actin mechanics control spindle centring in the mouse zygote.

    PubMed

    Chaigne, Agathe; Campillo, Clément; Voituriez, Raphaël; Gov, Nir S; Sykes, Cécile; Verlhac, Marie-Hélène; Terret, Marie-Emilie

    2016-01-01

    Mitotic spindle position relies on interactions between astral microtubules nucleated by centrosomes and a rigid cortex. Some cells, such as mouse oocytes, do not possess centrosomes and astral microtubules. These cells rely only on actin and on a soft cortex to position their spindle off-centre and undergo asymmetric divisions. While the first mouse embryonic division also occurs in the absence of centrosomes, it is symmetric and not much is known on how the spindle is positioned at the exact cell centre. Using interdisciplinary approaches, we demonstrate that zygotic spindle positioning follows a three-step process: (1) coarse centring of pronuclei relying on the dynamics of an F-actin/Myosin-Vb meshwork; (2) fine centring of the metaphase plate depending on a high cortical tension; (3) passive maintenance at the cell centre. Altogether, we show that F-actin-dependent mechanics operate the switch between asymmetric to symmetric division required at the oocyte to embryo transition. PMID:26727405

  11. Actin filaments elongate from their membrane-associated ends

    PubMed Central

    Tilney, LG; Bonder, EM; DeRosier, DJ

    1981-01-01

    In limulus sperm an actin filament bundle 55 mum in length extends from the acrosomal vacuole membrane through a canal in the nucleus and then coils in a regular fashion around the base of the nucleus. The bundle expands systematically from 15 filaments near the acrosomal vacuole to 85 filaments at the basal end. Thin sections of sperm fixed during stages in spermatid maturation reveal that the filament bundle begins to assemble on dense material attached to the acrosomal vacuole membrane. In micrographs fo these early stages in maturation, short bundles are seen extending posteriorly from the dense material. The significance is that these short, developing bundles have about 85 filaments, suggesting that the 85-filament end of the bundle is assembled first. By using filament bundles isolated and incubated in vitro with G actin from muscle, we can determine the end “preferred” for addition of actin monomers during polymerization. The end that would be associated with the acrosomal vacuole membrane, a membrane destined to be continuous with the plasma membrane, is preferred about 10 times over the other, thicker end. Decoration of the newly polymerized portions of the filament bundle with subfragment 1 of myosin reveals that the arrowheads point away from the acrosomal vacuole membrane, as is true of other actin filament bundles attached to membranes. From these observations we conclude that the bundle is nucleated from the dense material associated with the acrosomal vacuole and that monomers are added to the membrane-associated end. As monomers are added at the dense material, the thick first-made end of the filament bundle is pushed down through the nucleus where, upon reaching the base of the nucleus, it coils up. Tapering is brought about by the capping of the peripheral filaments in the bundle. PMID:7197276

  12. The reconstitution of actin polymerization on liposomes.

    PubMed

    Stamnes, Mark; Xu, Weidong

    2010-01-01

    Membrane-associated actin polymerization is of considerable interest due to its role in cell migration and the motility of intracellular organelles. Intensive research efforts are underway to investigate the physiological role of membrane-associated actin as well as the regulation and mechanics of actin assembly. Branched actin polymerization on membranes is catalyzed by the Arp2/3 complex. Signaling events leading to the activation of the guanosine triphosphate (GTP)-binding protein Cdc42 stimulate Arp2/3-dependent actin polymerization. We have studied the role of Cdc42 at the Golgi apparatus in part by reconstituting actin polymerization on isolated Golgi membranes and on liposomes. In this manner, we showed that cytosolic proteins are sufficient for actin assembly on a phospholipid bilayer. Here we describe methods for the cell-free reconstitution of membrane-associated actin polymerization using liposomes and brain cytosol.

  13. Dynamic actin structures stabilized by profilin.

    PubMed Central

    Finkel, T; Theriot, J A; Dise, K R; Tomaselli, G F; Goldschmidt-Clermont, P J

    1994-01-01

    We describe the production and analysis of clonal cell lines in which we have overexpressed human profilin, a small ubiquitous actin monomer binding protein, to assess the role of profilin on actin function in vivo. The concentration of filamentous actin is increased in cells with higher profilin levels, and actin filament half-life measured in these cells is directly proportional to the steady-state profilin concentration. The distribution of actin filaments is altered by profilin overexpression. While parallel actin bundles crossing the cells are virtually absent in cells overexpressing profilin, the submembranous actin network of these cells is denser than in control cells. These results suggest that in vivo profilin regulates the stability, and thereby distribution, of specific dynamic actin structures. Images PMID:8108438

  14. Nucleation of Crystals in Solution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vekilov, Peter G.

    2010-07-01

    Solution crystallization is an essential part of processes in the chemical and pharmaceutical industries and a major step in physiological and pathological phenomena. Crystallization starts with nucleation and control of nucleation is crucial for the control of the number, size, perfection, polymorphism and other characteristics of the crystalline materials. Recently, there have been significant advances in the understanding of the mechanism of nucleation of crystals in solution. The most significant of these is the two-step mechanism of nucleation, according to which the crystalline nucleus appears inside pre-existing metastable clusters of size several hundred nanometers, which consist of dense liquid and are suspended in the solution. While initially proposed for protein crystals, the applicability of this mechanism has been demonstrated for small molecule organic materials, colloids, and biominerals. This mechanism helps to explain several long-standing puzzles of crystal nucleation in solution: nucleation rates which are many orders of magnitude lower than theoretical predictions, nucleation kinetic dependencies with steady or receding parts at increasing supersaturation, the role of heterogeneous substrates for polymorph selection, the significance of the dense protein liquid, and others. More importantly, this mechanism provides powerful tools for control of the nucleation process by varying the solution thermodynamic parameters so that the volume occupied by the dense liquid shrinks or expands.

  15. Actin polymerization and intracellular solvent flow in cell surface blebbing

    PubMed Central

    1995-01-01

    The cortical actin gel of eukaryotic cells is postulated to control cell surface activity. One type of protrusion that may offer clues to this regulation are the spherical aneurysms of the surface membrane known as blebs. Blebs occur normally in cells during spreading and alternate with other protrusions, such as ruffles, suggesting similar protrusive machinery is involved. We recently reported that human melanoma cell lines deficient in the actin filament cross-linking protein, ABP-280, show prolonged blebbing, thus allowing close study of blebs and their dynamics. Blebs expand at different rates of volume increase that directly predict the final size achieved by each bleb. These rates decrease as the F-actin concentration of the cells increase over time after plating on a surface, but do so at lower concentrations in ABP-280 expressing cells. Fluorescently labeled actin and phalloidin injections of blebbing cells indicate that a polymerized actin structure is not present initially, but appears later and is responsible for stopping further bleb expansion. Therefore, it is postulated that blebs occur when the fluid-driven expansion of the cell membrane is sufficiently rapid to initially outpace the local rate of actin polymerization. In this model, the rate of intracellular solvent flow driving this expansion decreases as cortical gelation is achieved, whether by factors such as ABP-280, or by concentrated actin polymers alone, thereby leading to decreased size and occurrence of blebs. Since the forces driving bleb extension would always be present in a cell, this process may influence other cell protrusions as well. PMID:7790356

  16. Surface nanobubbles nucleate microdroplets.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xuehua; Lhuissier, Henri; Sun, Chao; Lohse, Detlef

    2014-04-11

    When a hydrophobic solid is in contact with water, surface nanobubbles often form at the interface. They have a lifetime many orders of magnitude longer than expected. Here, we show that they even withstand a temperature increase to temperatures close to the boiling point of bulk water; i.e., they do not nucleate larger bubbles ("superstability"). On the contrary, when the vapor-liquid contact line passes a nanobubble, a liquid film remains around it, which, after pinch-off, results in a microdroplet in which the nanobubbles continue to exist. Finally, the microdroplet evaporates and the nanobubble consequently bursts. Our results support that pinning plays a crucial role for nanobubble stability. PMID:24765973

  17. Preferential Nucleation during Polymorphic Transformations

    PubMed Central

    Sharma, H.; Sietsma, J.; Offerman, S. E.

    2016-01-01

    Polymorphism is the ability of a solid material to exist in more than one phase or crystal structure. Polymorphism may occur in metals, alloys, ceramics, minerals, polymers, and pharmaceutical substances. Unresolved are the conditions for preferential nucleation during polymorphic transformations in which structural relationships or special crystallographic orientation relationships (OR’s) form between the nucleus and surrounding matrix grains. We measured in-situ and simultaneously the nucleation rates of grains that have zero, one, two, three and four special OR’s with the surrounding parent grains. These experiments show a trend in which the activation energy for nucleation becomes smaller – and therefore nucleation more probable - with increasing number of special OR’s. These insights contribute to steering the processing of polymorphic materials with tailored properties, since preferential nucleation affects which crystal structure forms, the average grain size and texture of the material, and thereby - to a large extent - the final properties of the material. PMID:27484579

  18. Nucleation rate in monotectic alloys

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Falk, F.

    Cooling a melt of a monotectic system into the miscibility gap results in nucleation of fluid droplets in a fluid matrix prior to solidification. For homogeneous nucleation the temperature dependence of the nucleation rate is calculated. As material parameters the chemical potential of the species involved, the diffusion constant of the fluid, and the surface tension between adjacent phases are important. Since their temperature dependence is not well known from experiments, different theoretical models are used and their influence is discussed. The surface tension turns out to be the most crucial parameter in determining the nucleation rate. For AlIn numerical results are presented. In this system the undercooling with respect to homogeneous nucleation increases from zero at the critical point to 100 K at a composition near the monotectic point.

  19. Preferential Nucleation during Polymorphic Transformations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharma, H.; Sietsma, J.; Offerman, S. E.

    2016-08-01

    Polymorphism is the ability of a solid material to exist in more than one phase or crystal structure. Polymorphism may occur in metals, alloys, ceramics, minerals, polymers, and pharmaceutical substances. Unresolved are the conditions for preferential nucleation during polymorphic transformations in which structural relationships or special crystallographic orientation relationships (OR’s) form between the nucleus and surrounding matrix grains. We measured in-situ and simultaneously the nucleation rates of grains that have zero, one, two, three and four special OR’s with the surrounding parent grains. These experiments show a trend in which the activation energy for nucleation becomes smaller – and therefore nucleation more probable - with increasing number of special OR’s. These insights contribute to steering the processing of polymorphic materials with tailored properties, since preferential nucleation affects which crystal structure forms, the average grain size and texture of the material, and thereby - to a large extent - the final properties of the material.

  20. Preferential Nucleation during Polymorphic Transformations.

    PubMed

    Sharma, H; Sietsma, J; Offerman, S E

    2016-08-03

    Polymorphism is the ability of a solid material to exist in more than one phase or crystal structure. Polymorphism may occur in metals, alloys, ceramics, minerals, polymers, and pharmaceutical substances. Unresolved are the conditions for preferential nucleation during polymorphic transformations in which structural relationships or special crystallographic orientation relationships (OR's) form between the nucleus and surrounding matrix grains. We measured in-situ and simultaneously the nucleation rates of grains that have zero, one, two, three and four special OR's with the surrounding parent grains. These experiments show a trend in which the activation energy for nucleation becomes smaller - and therefore nucleation more probable - with increasing number of special OR's. These insights contribute to steering the processing of polymorphic materials with tailored properties, since preferential nucleation affects which crystal structure forms, the average grain size and texture of the material, and thereby - to a large extent - the final properties of the material.

  1. Preferential Nucleation during Polymorphic Transformations.

    PubMed

    Sharma, H; Sietsma, J; Offerman, S E

    2016-01-01

    Polymorphism is the ability of a solid material to exist in more than one phase or crystal structure. Polymorphism may occur in metals, alloys, ceramics, minerals, polymers, and pharmaceutical substances. Unresolved are the conditions for preferential nucleation during polymorphic transformations in which structural relationships or special crystallographic orientation relationships (OR's) form between the nucleus and surrounding matrix grains. We measured in-situ and simultaneously the nucleation rates of grains that have zero, one, two, three and four special OR's with the surrounding parent grains. These experiments show a trend in which the activation energy for nucleation becomes smaller - and therefore nucleation more probable - with increasing number of special OR's. These insights contribute to steering the processing of polymorphic materials with tailored properties, since preferential nucleation affects which crystal structure forms, the average grain size and texture of the material, and thereby - to a large extent - the final properties of the material. PMID:27484579

  2. Association of actin with alpha crystallins

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gopalakrishnan, S.; Boyle, D.; Takemoto, L.; Spooner, B. S. (Principal Investigator)

    1993-01-01

    The alpha crystallins are cytosolic proteins that co-localize and co-purify with actin-containing microfilaments. Affinity column chromatography employing both covalently-coupled actin or alpha crystallin was used to demonstrate specific and saturable binding of actin with alpha crystallin. This conclusion was confirmed by direct visualization of alpha aggregates bound to actin polymerized in vitro. The significance of this interaction in relation to the functional properties of these two polypeptides will be discussed.

  3. Cooperative signaling by TGF-β1 and WNT-11 drives sm-α-actin expression in smooth muscle via Rho kinase-actin-MRTF-A signaling.

    PubMed

    Kumawat, Kuldeep; Koopmans, Tim; Menzen, Mark H; Prins, Alita; Smit, Marieke; Halayko, Andrew J; Gosens, Reinoud

    2016-09-01

    Airway smooth muscle (ASM) remodeling is a key feature in asthma and includes changes in smooth muscle-specific gene and protein expression. Despite this being a major contributor to asthma pathobiology, our understanding of the mechanisms governing ASM remodeling remains poor. Here, we studied the functional interaction between WNT-11 and TGF-β1 in ASM cells. We demonstrate that WNT-11 is preferentially expressed in contractile myocytes and is strongly upregulated following TGF-β1-induced myocyte maturation. Knock-down of WNT-11 attenuated TGF-β1-induced smooth muscle (sm)-α-actin expression in ASM cells. We demonstrate that TGF-β1-induced sm-α-actin expression is mediated by WNT-11 via RhoA activation and subsequent actin cytoskeletal remodeling, as pharmacological inhibition of either Rho kinase by Y27632 or actin remodeling by latrunculin A attenuated sm-α-actin induction. Moreover, we show that TGF-β1 regulates the nuclear expression of myocardin-related transcription factor-A (MRTF-A) in a Rho kinase-dependent fashion, which in turn mediates sm-α-actin expression. Finally, we demonstrate that TGF-β1-induced MRTF-A nuclear translocation is dependent on endogenous WNT-11. The present study thus demonstrates a WNT-11-dependent Rho kinase-actin-MRTF-A signaling axis that regulates the expression of sm-α-actin in ASM cells.

  4. Nucleation and growth of cracks in vitreous-bonded aluminum oxide at elevated temperatures

    SciTech Connect

    Jakus, K.; Wiederhorn, S.M.; Hockey, B.J.

    1986-10-01

    The nucleation and growth of cracks was studied at elevated temperatures on a grade of vitreous-bonded aluminium oxide that contained approx. =8 vol% glass at the grain boundaries. Cracks were observed to nucleate within the vitreous phase, close to the tensile surface of the flexural test specimens used in these experiments. Crack nucleation occurred at a strain of approx. =0.08% to 0.12% which corresponded to a crack nucleation time of approx. =35% of the time to failure by creep rupture. Once nucleated, cracks propagated along grain boundaries, as long as the stress for crack propagation was maintained. The crack velocity for cracks that were nucleated by the creep process was found to be linearly proportional to the apparent stress intensity factor, whereas for cracks that were nucleated by indentation, the crack velocity was proportional to the fourth power of the apparent stress intensity factor.

  5. Actin induction during PMA and cAMP-dependent signal pathway activation in Entamoeba histolytica trophozoites.

    PubMed

    Ortiz, D; del Carmen Dominguez-Robles, M; Villegas-Sepúlveda, N; Meza, I

    2000-10-01

    Activation of PKC or cAMP-dependent signalling pathways in Entamoeba histolytica triggers the phosphorylation of proteins involved in actin rearrangements necessary for adhesion and locomotion. Analogous motifs to SRE and CRE sequences--known to respond to PMA and cAMP--were identified within the 5' regulatory region (5'RR) of one of the parasite actin genes. These sequences could be involved in the actin transcriptional upregulation reported during signalling. To test this hypothesis, a plasmid containing the 5'RR of the actin gene fused to the bacterial neomycin gene (neo) was used for stable transfection. Expression of neo and endogenous actin was measured after stimulation of transfected amoebae by PMA and dcAMP. It was found that both compounds induced neo and actin expression and showed a co-operative effect in the induction of neo. Induction by PMA or dcAMP failed if the directing amoebic 5'RR lacked SRE and CRE motifs. Transfection of amoebae with plasmid constructs, containing either progressive deletions of the actin 5'RR or site-directed mutations of the SRE and CRE-like motifs, corroborated that these sequences and a co-ordinated participation of PKC- and PKA-activated transcription factors are responsible for the increments in neo and actin mRNAs. In vivo, these PMA and cAMP-response elements could play an important role in regulating actin expression and organization in signalling processes activated during tissue invasion.

  6. Actin in hair cells and hearing loss.

    PubMed

    Drummond, Meghan C; Belyantseva, Inna A; Friderici, Karen H; Friedman, Thomas B

    2012-06-01

    Hereditary deafness is genetically heterogeneous such that mutations of many different genes can cause hearing loss. This review focuses on the evidence and implications that several of these deafness genes encode actin-interacting proteins or actin itself. There is a growing appreciation of the contribution of the actin interactome in stereocilia development, maintenance, mechanotransduction and malfunction of the auditory system.

  7. Mechanisms of leiomodin 2-mediated regulation of actin filament in muscle cells

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Xiaorui; Ni, Fengyun; Kondrashkina, Elena; Ma, Jianpeng; Wang, Qinghua

    2015-01-01

    Leiomodin (Lmod) is a class of potent tandem-G-actin–binding nucleators in muscle cells. Lmod mutations, deletion, or instability are linked to lethal nemaline myopathy. However, the lack of high-resolution structures of Lmod nucleators in action severely hampered our understanding of their essential cellular functions. Here we report the crystal structure of the actin–Lmod2162–495 nucleus. The structure contains two actin subunits connected by one Lmod2162–495 molecule in a non–filament-like conformation. Complementary functional studies suggest that the binding of Lmod2 stimulates ATP hydrolysis and accelerates actin nucleation and polymerization. The high level of conservation among Lmod proteins in sequence and functions suggests that the mechanistic insights of human Lmod2 uncovered here may aid in a molecular understanding of other Lmod proteins. Furthermore, our structural and mechanistic studies unraveled a previously unrecognized level of regulation in mammalian signal transduction mediated by certain tandem-G-actin–binding nucleators. PMID:26417072

  8. Analysis of rhodamine and fluorescein-labeled F-actin diffusion in vitro by fluorescence photobleaching recovery.

    PubMed Central

    Simon, J R; Gough, A; Urbanik, E; Wang, F; Lanni, F; Ware, B R; Taylor, D L

    1988-01-01

    Properties of filamentous acetamidofluorescein-labeled actin and acetamidotetramethylrhodamine-labeled actin (AF and ATR-actin, respectively) were examined to resolve discrepancies in the reported translational diffusion coefficients of F-actin measured in vitro by FPR and other techniques. Using falling-ball viscometry and two independent versions of fluorescence photobleaching recovery (FPR), the present data indicate that several factors are responsible for these discrepancies. Gel filtration chromatography profoundly affects the viscosity of actin solutions and filament diffusion coefficients. ATR-actin and, to a lesser degree, AF-actin show a reduction in viscosity in proportion to the fraction labeled, presumably due to filament shortening. Actin filaments containing AF-actin or ATR-actin are susceptible to photoinduced damage, including a covalent cross-linking of actin protomers within filaments and an apparent cleavage of filaments detected by a decrease of the measured viscosity and an increase in the measured filament diffusion coefficients. Quantum yields of the two photoinduced effects are quite different. Multiple cross-links are produced relative to each photobleaching event, whereas less than 1% filament cleavage occurs. Substantial differences in the filament diffusion coefficients measured by FPR are also the result of differences in illumination geometry and sampling time. However, under controlled conditions, FPR can be used as a quantitative tool for measuring the hydrodynamic properties of actin filaments. Incremented filament shortening caused by photoinduced cleavage or incremental addition of filament capping proteins produces a continuous and approximately linear increase of filament diffusion coefficients, indicating that filaments are not associated in solution. Our results indicate that actin filaments exhibit low mobilities and it is inferred that actin filaments formed in vitro by column-purified actin, under standard conditions, are

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

    Pathogenic Yersinia species evade host immune systems through the injection of Yersinia outer proteins (Yops) into phagocytic cells. One Yop, YopO, also known as YpkA, induces actin-filament disruption, impairing phagocytosis. Here we describe the X-ray structure of Yersinia enterocolitica YopO in complex with actin, which reveals that YopO binds to an actin monomer in a manner that blocks polymerization yet allows the bound actin to interact with host actin-regulating proteins. SILAC-MS and biochemical analyses confirm that actin-polymerization regulators such as VASP, EVL, WASP, gelsolin and the formin diaphanous 1 are directly sequestered and phosphorylated by YopO through formation of ternary complexes with actin. This leads to a model in which YopO at the membrane sequesters actin from polymerization while using the bound actin as bait to recruit, phosphorylate and misregulate host actin-regulating proteins to disrupt phagocytosis. PMID:25664724

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-03-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  12. Active Chemical Thermodynamics promoted by activity of cortical actin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhattacharya, Bhaswati; Chaudhuri, Abhishek; Gowrishankar, Kripa; Rao, Madan

    2011-03-01

    The spatial distribution and dynamics of formation and breakup of the nanoclusters of cell surface proteins is controlled by the active remodeling dynamics of the underlying cortical actin. To explain these observations, we have proposed a novel mechanism of nanoclustering, involving the transient binding to and advection along constitutively occuring ``asters'' of cortical actin. We study the consequences of such active actin-based clustering, in the context of chemical reactions involving conformational changes of cell surface proteins. We find that the active remodeling of cortical actin, can give rise to a dramatic increase in efficiency and extent of conformational spread, even at low levels of expression at the cell surface. We define a activity temperature (τa) arising due to actin activities which can be used to describe chemical thermodynamics of the system. We plot TTT (time-temparature-transformation) curves and compute the Arrhenius factors which depend on τa . With this, the active asters can be treated as enzymes whose enzymatic reaction rate can be related to the activity.

  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. 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. PMID:25561219

  15. Formin-mediated actin polymerization promotes Salmonella invasion.

    PubMed

    Truong, Dorothy; Brabant, Danielle; Bashkurov, Mikhail; Wan, Leo C K; Braun, Virginie; Heo, Won Do; Meyer, Tobias; Pelletier, Laurence; Copeland, John; Brumell, John H

    2013-12-01

    Salmonella invade host cells using Type 3 secreted effectors, which modulate host cellular targets to promote actin rearrangements at the cell surface that drive bacterial uptake. The Arp2/3 complex contributes to Salmonella invasion but is not essential, indicating other actin regulatory factors are involved. Here, we show a novel role for FHOD1, a formin family member, in Salmonella invasion. FHOD1 and Arp2/3 occupy distinct microdomains at the invasion site and control distinct aspects of membrane protrusion formation. FHOD1 is phosphorylated during infection and this modification is required for promoting bacterial uptake by host cells. ROCK II, but not ROCK I, is recruited to the invasion site and is required for FHOD1 phosphorylation and for Salmonella invasion. Together, our studies revealan important phospho-dependent FHOD1 actin polymerization pathway in Salmonella invasion.

  16. 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

    2016-04-01

    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.

  17. 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

    2016-04-01

    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. PMID:26997484

  18. The N-terminal tropomyosin- and actin-binding sites are important for leiomodin 2’s function

    PubMed Central

    Ly, Thu; Moroz, Natalia; Pappas, Christopher T.; Novak, Stefanie M.; Tolkatchev, Dmitri; Wooldridge, Dayton; Mayfield, Rachel M.; Helms, Gregory; Gregorio, Carol C.; Kostyukova, Alla S.

    2016-01-01

    Leiomodin is a potent actin nucleator related to tropomodulin, a capping protein localized at the pointed end of the thin filaments. Mutations in leiomodin-3 are associated with lethal nemaline myopathy in humans, and leiomodin-2–knockout mice present with dilated cardiomyopathy. The arrangement of the N-terminal actin- and tropomyosin-binding sites in leiomodin is contradictory and functionally not well understood. Using one-dimensional nuclear magnetic resonance and the pointed-end actin polymerization assay, we find that leiomodin-2, a major cardiac isoform, has an N-terminal actin-binding site located within residues 43–90. Moreover, for the first time, we obtain evidence that there are additional interactions with actin within residues 124–201. Here we establish that leiomodin interacts with only one tropomyosin molecule, and this is the only site of interaction between leiomodin and tropomyosin. Introduction of mutations in both actin- and tropomyosin-binding sites of leiomodin affected its localization at the pointed ends of the thin filaments in cardiomyocytes. On the basis of our new findings, we propose a model in which leiomodin regulates actin poly­merization dynamics in myocytes by acting as a leaky cap at thin filament pointed ends. PMID:27307584

  19. The N-terminal tropomyosin- and actin-binding sites are important for leiomodin 2's function.

    PubMed

    Ly, Thu; Moroz, Natalia; Pappas, Christopher T; Novak, Stefanie M; Tolkatchev, Dmitri; Wooldridge, Dayton; Mayfield, Rachel M; Helms, Gregory; Gregorio, Carol C; Kostyukova, Alla S

    2016-08-15

    Leiomodin is a potent actin nucleator related to tropomodulin, a capping protein localized at the pointed end of the thin filaments. Mutations in leiomodin-3 are associated with lethal nemaline myopathy in humans, and leiomodin-2-knockout mice present with dilated cardiomyopathy. The arrangement of the N-terminal actin- and tropomyosin-binding sites in leiomodin is contradictory and functionally not well understood. Using one-dimensional nuclear magnetic resonance and the pointed-end actin polymerization assay, we find that leiomodin-2, a major cardiac isoform, has an N-terminal actin-binding site located within residues 43-90. Moreover, for the first time, we obtain evidence that there are additional interactions with actin within residues 124-201. Here we establish that leiomodin interacts with only one tropomyosin molecule, and this is the only site of interaction between leiomodin and tropomyosin. Introduction of mutations in both actin- and tropomyosin-binding sites of leiomodin affected its localization at the pointed ends of the thin filaments in cardiomyocytes. On the basis of our new findings, we propose a model in which leiomodin regulates actin poly-merization dynamics in myocytes by acting as a leaky cap at thin filament pointed ends.

  20. The N-terminal tropomyosin- and actin-binding sites are important for leiomodin 2's function.

    PubMed

    Ly, Thu; Moroz, Natalia; Pappas, Christopher T; Novak, Stefanie M; Tolkatchev, Dmitri; Wooldridge, Dayton; Mayfield, Rachel M; Helms, Gregory; Gregorio, Carol C; Kostyukova, Alla S

    2016-08-15

    Leiomodin is a potent actin nucleator related to tropomodulin, a capping protein localized at the pointed end of the thin filaments. Mutations in leiomodin-3 are associated with lethal nemaline myopathy in humans, and leiomodin-2-knockout mice present with dilated cardiomyopathy. The arrangement of the N-terminal actin- and tropomyosin-binding sites in leiomodin is contradictory and functionally not well understood. Using one-dimensional nuclear magnetic resonance and the pointed-end actin polymerization assay, we find that leiomodin-2, a major cardiac isoform, has an N-terminal actin-binding site located within residues 43-90. Moreover, for the first time, we obtain evidence that there are additional interactions with actin within residues 124-201. Here we establish that leiomodin interacts with only one tropomyosin molecule, and this is the only site of interaction between leiomodin and tropomyosin. Introduction of mutations in both actin- and tropomyosin-binding sites of leiomodin affected its localization at the pointed ends of the thin filaments in cardiomyocytes. On the basis of our new findings, we propose a model in which leiomodin regulates actin poly-merization dynamics in myocytes by acting as a leaky cap at thin filament pointed ends. PMID:27307584

  1. Ice Nucleation Activity in Lichens

    PubMed Central

    Kieft, Thomas L.

    1988-01-01

    A newly discovered form of biological ice nucleus associated with lichens is described. Ice nucleation spectra of a variety of lichens from the southwestern United States were measured by the drop-freezing method. Several epilithic lichen samples of the genera Rhizoplaca, Xanthoparmelia, and Xanthoria had nuclei active at temperatures as warm as −2.3°C and had densities of 2.3 × 106 to more than 1 × 108 nuclei g−1 at −5°C (2 to 4 orders of magnitude higher than any plants infected with ice nucleation-active bacteria). Most lichens tested had nucleation activity above −8°C. Lichen substrates (rocks, plants, and soil) showed negligible activity above −8°C. Ice nucleation-active bacteria were not isolated from the lichens, and activity was not destroyed by heat (70°C) or sonication, indicating that lichen-associated ice nuclei are nonbacterial in origin and differ chemically from previously described biological ice nuclei. An axenic culture of the lichen fungus Rhizoplaca chrysoleuca showed detectable ice nucleation activity at −1.9°C and an ice nucleation density of 4.5 × 106 nuclei g−1 at −5°C. It is hypothesized that these lichens, which are both frost tolerant and dependent on atmospheric moisture, derive benefit in the form of increased moisture deposition as a result of ice nucleation. PMID:16347678

  2. Ice nucleation activity in lichens.

    PubMed

    Kieft, T L

    1988-07-01

    A newly discovered form of biological ice nucleus associated with lichens is described. Ice nucleation spectra of a variety of lichens from the southwestern United States were measured by the drop-freezing method. Several epilithic lichen samples of the genera Rhizoplaca, Xanthoparmelia, and Xanthoria had nuclei active at temperatures as warm as -2.3 degrees C and had densities of 2.3 x 10 to more than 1 x 10 nuclei g at -5 degrees C (2 to 4 orders of magnitude higher than any plants infected with ice nucleation-active bacteria). Most lichens tested had nucleation activity above -8 degrees C. Lichen substrates (rocks, plants, and soil) showed negligible activity above -8 degrees C. Ice nucleation-active bacteria were not isolated from the lichens, and activity was not destroyed by heat (70 degrees C) or sonication, indicating that lichen-associated ice nuclei are nonbacterial in origin and differ chemically from previously described biological ice nuclei. An axenic culture of the lichen fungus Rhizoplaca chrysoleuca showed detectable ice nucleation activity at -1.9 degrees C and an ice nucleation density of 4.5 x 10 nuclei g at -5 degrees C. It is hypothesized that these lichens, which are both frost tolerant and dependent on atmospheric moisture, derive benefit in the form of increased moisture deposition as a result of ice nucleation.

  3. Coordination of the Filament Stabilizing Versus Destabilizing Activities of Cofilin Through its Secondary Binding Site on Actin

    PubMed Central

    Aggeli, Dimitra; Kish-Trier, Erik; Lin, Meng Chi; Haarer, Brian; Cingolani, Gino; Cooper, John A.; Wilkens, Stephan; Amberg, David C.

    2014-01-01

    Cofilin is a ubiquitous modulator of actin cytoskeleton dynamics that can both stabilize and destabilize actin filaments depending on its concentration and/or the presence of regulatory co-factors. Three charge-reversal mutants of yeast cofilin, located in cofilin’s filament-specific secondary binding site, were characterized in order to understand why disruption of this site leads to enhanced filament disassembly. Crystal structures of the mutants showed that the mutations specifically affect the secondary actin-binding interface, leaving the primary binding site unaltered. The mutant cofilins show enhanced activity compared to wild-type cofilin in severing and disassembling actin filaments. Electron microscopy and image analysis revealed long actin filaments in the presence of wild-type cofilin, while the mutants induced many short filaments, consistent with enhanced severing. Real-time fluorescence microscopy of labeled actin filaments confirmed that the mutants, unlike wild-type cofilin, were functioning as constitutively active severing proteins. In cells, the mutant cofilins delayed endocytosis, which depends on rapid actin turnover. We conclude that mutating cofilin’s secondary actin-binding site increases cofilin’s ability to sever and depolymerize actin filaments. We hypothesize that activators of cofilin severing, like Aip1p, may act by disrupting the interface between cofilin’s secondary actin-binding site and the actin filament. PMID:24943913

  4. 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.

  5. Climate Impacts of Ice Nucleation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gettelman, Andrew; Liu, Xiaohong; Barahona, Donifan; Lohmann, Ulrike; Chen, Celia

    2012-01-01

    Several different ice nucleation parameterizations in two different General Circulation Models (GCMs) are used to understand the effects of ice nucleation on the mean climate state, and the Aerosol Indirect Effects (AIE) of cirrus clouds on climate. Simulations have a range of ice microphysical states that are consistent with the spread of observations, but many simulations have higher present-day ice crystal number concentrations than in-situ observations. These different states result from different parameterizations of ice cloud nucleation processes, and feature different balances of homogeneous and heterogeneous nucleation. Black carbon aerosols have a small (0.06 Wm(exp-2) and not statistically significant AIE when included as ice nuclei, for nucleation efficiencies within the range of laboratory measurements. Indirect effects of anthropogenic aerosols on cirrus clouds occur as a consequence of increasing anthropogenic sulfur emissions with different mechanisms important in different models. In one model this is due to increases in homogeneous nucleation fraction, and in the other due to increases in heterogeneous nucleation with coated dust. The magnitude of the effect is the same however. The resulting ice AIE does not seem strongly dependent on the balance between homogeneous and heterogeneous ice nucleation. Regional effects can reach several Wm2. Indirect effects are slightly larger for those states with less homogeneous nucleation and lower ice number concentration in the base state. The total ice AIE is estimated at 0.27 +/- 0.10 Wm(exp-2) (1 sigma uncertainty). This represents a 20% offset of the simulated total shortwave AIE for ice and liquid clouds of 1.6 Wm(sup-2).

  6. Climate Impacts of Ice Nucleation

    SciTech Connect

    Gettelman, A.; Liu, Xiaohong; Barahona, Donifan; Lohmann, U.; Chen, Chih-Chieh

    2012-10-19

    [1] Several different ice nucleation parameterizations in two different General Circulation Models (GCMs) are used to understand the effects of ice nucleation on the mean climate state, and the Aerosol Indirect Effects (AIE) of cirrus clouds on climate. Simulations have a range of ice microphysical states that are consistent with the spread of observations, but many simulations have higher present-day ice crystal number concentrations than in-situ observations. These different states result from different parameterizations of ice cloud nucleation processes, and feature different balances of homogeneous and heterogeneous nucleation. Black carbon aerosols have a small (-0.06 Wm-2) and not statistically significant AIE when included as ice nuclei, for nucleation efficiencies within the range of laboratory measurements. Indirect effects of anthropogenic aerosols on cirrus clouds occur as a consequence of increasing anthropogenic sulfur emissions with different mechanisms important in different models. In one model this is due to increases in homogeneous nucleation fraction, and in the other due to increases in heterogeneous nucleation with coated dust. The magnitude of the effect is the same however. The resulting ice AIE does not seem strongly dependent on the balance between homogeneous and heterogeneous ice nucleation. Regional effects can reach several Wm-2. Indirect effects are slightly larger for those states with less homogeneous nucleation and lower ice number concentration in the base state. The total ice AIE is estimated at 0.27 ± 0.10 Wm-2 (1σ uncertainty). Finally, this represents a 20% offset of the simulated total shortwave AIE for ice and liquid clouds of -1.6 Wm-2.

  7. Tip-localized actin polymerization and remodeling, reflected by the localization of ADF, profilin and villin, are fundamental for gravity-sensing and polar growth in characean rhizoids.

    PubMed

    Braun, Markus; Hauslage, Jens; Czogalla, Aleksander; Limbach, Christoph

    2004-07-01

    Polar organization and gravity-oriented, polarized growth of characean rhizoids are dependent on the actin cytoskeleton. In this report, we demonstrate that the prominent center of the Spitzenkörper serves as the apical actin polymerization site in the extending tip. After cytochalasin D-induced disruption of the actin cytoskeleton, the regeneration of actin microfilaments (MFs) starts with the reappearance of a flat, brightly fluorescing actin array in the outermost tip. The actin array rounds up, produces actin MFs that radiate in all directions and is then relocated into its original central position in the center of the Spitzenkörper. The emerging actin MFs rearrange and cross-link to form the delicate, subapical meshwork, which then controls the statolith positioning, re-establishes the tip-high calcium gradient and mediates the reorganization of the Spitzenkörper with its central ER aggregate and the accumulation of secretory vesicles. Tip growth and gravitropic sensing, which includes control of statolith positioning and gravity-induced sedimentation, are not resumed until the original polar actin organization is completely restored. Immunolocalization of the actin-binding proteins, actin-depolymerizing factor (ADF) and profilin, which both accumulate in the center of the Spitzenkörper, indicates high actin turnover and gives additional support for the actin-polymerizing function of this central, apical area. Association of villin immunofluorescence with two populations of thick undulating actin cables with uniform polarity underlying rotational cytoplasmic streaming in the basal region suggests that villin is the major actin-bundling protein in rhizoids. Our results provide evidence that the precise coordination of apical actin polymerization and dynamic remodeling of actin MFs by actin-binding proteins play a fundamental role in cell polarization, gravity sensing and gravity-oriented polarized growth of characean rhizoids.

  8. Metadynamics studies of crystal nucleation

    PubMed Central

    Giberti, Federico; Salvalaglio, Matteo; Parrinello, Michele

    2015-01-01

    Crystallization processes are characterized by activated events and long timescales. These characteristics prevent standard molecular dynamics techniques from being efficiently used for the direct investigation of processes such as nucleation. This short review provides an overview on the use of metadynamics, a state-of-the-art enhanced sampling technique, for the simulation of phase transitions involving the production of a crystalline solid. In particular the principles of metadynamics are outlined, several order parameters are described that have been or could be used in conjunction with metadynamics to sample nucleation events and then an overview is given of recent metadynamics results in the field of crystal nucleation. PMID:25866662

  9. The actin of muscle and fibroblasts.

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, P J

    1976-01-01

    The isolation and quantification of an 18-residue peptide from the N-terminal region of chicken actin was used to quantify the amount of actin in acetone-dried powders of chicken breast muscle and chicken-embryo fibroblasts. Either isotope dilution or double labelling can be used for peptide quantification. About 17% of the protein of chicken breast muscle was estimated to be actin. However, only 0.25% of the protein of chicken-embryo fibroblasts was determined to be actin by quantification of this peptide. The actin content of fibroblasts may be low or the amino acid sequences of muscle and fibroblast actin may differ in the N-terminal region. The methodology used can be extended to examine whether other regions of muscle actin sequence are present in fibroblasts or other cell types. PMID:938480

  10. Rearrangement of Actin Microfilaments in Plant Root Hairs Responding to Rhizobium etli Nodulation Signals1

    PubMed Central

    Cárdenas, Luis; Vidali, Luis; Domínguez, Jimena; Pérez, Héctor; Sánchez, Federico; Hepler, Peter K.; Quinto, Carmen

    1998-01-01

    The response of the actin cytoskeleton to nodulation (Nod) factors secreted by Rhizobium etli has been studied in living root hairs of bean (Phaseolus vulgaris) that were microinjected with fluorescein isothiocyanate-phalloidin. In untreated control cells or cells treated with the inactive chitin oligomer, the actin cytoskeleton was organized into long bundles that were oriented parallel to the long axis of the root hair and extended into the apical zone. Upon exposure to R. etli Nod factors, the filamentous actin became fragmented, as indicated by the appearance of prominent masses of diffuse fluorescence in the apical region of the root hair. These changes in the actin cytoskeleton were rapid, observed as soon as 5 to 10 min after application of the Nod factors. It was interesting that the filamentous actin partially recovered in the continued presence of the Nod factor: by 1 h, long bundles had reformed. However, these cells still contained a significant amount of diffuse fluorescence in the apical zone and in the nuclear area, presumably indicating the presence of short actin filaments. These results indicate that Nod factors alter the organization of actin microfilaments in root hair cells, and this could be a prelude for the formation of infection threads. PMID:9501120

  11. Nedd4, a human ubiquitin ligase, affects actin cytoskeleton in yeast cells.

    PubMed

    Stawiecka-Mirota, Marta; Kamińska, Joanna; Urban-Grimal, Daniele; Haines, Dale S; Zoładek, Teresa

    2008-11-01

    Human Nedd4 ubiquitin ligase is involved in protein trafficking, signal transduction and oncogenesis. Nedd4 with an inactive WW4 domain is toxic to yeast cells. We report here that actin cytoskeleton is abnormal in yeast cells expressing the NEDD4 or NEDD4w4 gene and these cells are more sensitive to Latrunculin A, an actin-depolymerizing drug. These phenotypes are less pronounced when a mutation inactivating the catalytic domain of the ligase has been introduced. In contrast, overexpression of the LAS17 gene, encoding an activator of the Arp2/3 actin nucleating complex, is detrimental to NEDD4w4-expressing cells. The level of Las17p is increased in cells overproducing Nedd4w4 and this depends partially on its catalytic domain. Expression of genes encoding Nedd4 variants, like overexpression of LAS17, suppresses the growth defect of the arp2-1 strain. Our results suggest that human Nedd4 ligase inhibits yeast cell growth by disturbing the actin cytoskeleton, in part by increasing Las17p level, and that Nedd4 ubiquitination targets may include actin cytoskeleton-associated proteins conserved in evolution. PMID:18804462

  12. Dew nucleation and growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beysens, Daniel

    2006-11-01

    Dew is the condensation of water vapor into liquid droplets on a substrate. It is characterized by an initial heterogeneous nucleation on a substrate and a further growth of droplets. The presence of a substrate that geometrically constrains the growth is the origin of the peculiarities and richness of the phenomenon. A key point is the drop interaction through drop fusion or coalescence, which leads to scaling in the growth and gives universality to the process. As a matter of fact, growth dynamics are only dependent on substrate and drop dimensionality. Coalescence events lead to temporal and spatio-temporal fluctuations in the substrate coverage, drop configuration, etc., which give rise to a very peculiar dynamics. When the substrate is a liquid or a liquid crystal, the drop pattern can exhibit special spatial order, such as crystalline, hexatic phases and fractal contours. Condensation on a solid substrate near its melting point can make the drop jump. The applications of monitoring dew formation are manifold. Examples can be found in medicine (sterilization process), agriculture (green houses) and hydrology (production of drinkable water). To cite this article: D. Beysens, C. R. Physique 7 (2006).

  13. Analysis of feedbacks between nucleation rate, survival probability and cloud condensation nuclei formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Westervelt, D. M.; Pierce, J. R.; Adams, P. J.

    2014-06-01

    Aerosol nucleation is an important source of particle number in the atmosphere. However, in order to become cloud condensation nuclei (CCN), freshly nucleated particles must undergo significant condensational growth while avoiding coagulational scavenging. In an effort to quantify the contribution of nucleation to CCN, this work uses the GEOS-Chem-TOMAS global aerosol model to calculate changes in CCN concentrations against a broad range of nucleation rates and mechanisms. We then quantify the factors that control CCN formation from nucleation, including daily nucleation rates, growth rates, coagulation sinks, condensation sinks, survival probabilities, and CCN formation rates, in order to examine feedbacks that may limit growth of nucleated particles to CCN. Nucleation rate parameterizations tested in GEOS-Chem-TOMAS include ternary nucleation (with multiple tuning factors), activation nucleation (with two pre-factors), binary nucleation, and ion-mediated nucleation. We find that nucleation makes a significant contribution to boundary layer CCN(0.2%), but this contribution is only modestly sensitive to the choice of nucleation scheme, ranging from 49 to 78% increase in concentrations over a control simulation with no nucleation. Moreover, a two order-of-magnitude increase in the globally averaged nucleation rate (via changes to tuning factors) results in small changes (less than 10%) to global CCN(0.2%) concentrations. To explain this, we present a simple theory showing that survival probability has an exponentially decreasing dependence on the square of the condensation sink. This functional form stems from a negative correlation between condensation sink and growth rate and a positive correlation between condensation sink and coagulational scavenging. Conceptually, with a fixed condensable vapor budget (sulfuric acid and organics), any increase in CCN concentrations due to higher nucleation rates necessarily entails an increased aerosol surface area in the

  14. Evidence for a species of nuclear actin distinct from cytoplasmic and muscles actins.

    PubMed

    Bremer, J W; Busch, H; Yeoman, L C

    1981-03-31

    Nuclear actin (protein BJ) has been isolated from the chromatin of Novikoff hepatoma ascites cells and purified to homogeneity by selective extraction, Sepharose CL-6B chromatography, and preparative polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. A comparison of nuclear and cytoplasmic actins from Novikoff hepatoma cells and rabbit muscle actin was made by amino acid analysis, isoelectric focusing/sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, and two-dimensional peptide mapping procedures. By these criteria, all of the proteins compared are actins, but each is chemically distinct. It was concluded, therefore, that nuclear actin is similar to, but not identical with, cytoplasmic actin isolated from Novikoff hepatoma cells. A striking similarity in peptide charge and migration as shown by peptide map analysis was observed for nuclear and rabbit skeletal muscle actins. This may indicate that nuclear actin has the capacity for contractile function. In addition, the actins synthesized in Novikoff hepatoma cells may results from more than two structural genes.

  15. Bubble nucleation in stout beers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, W. T.; McKechnie, J. S.; Devereux, M. G.

    2011-05-01

    Bubble nucleation in weakly supersaturated solutions of carbon dioxide—such as champagne, sparkling wines, and carbonated beers—is well understood. Bubbles grow and detach from nucleation sites: gas pockets trapped within hollow cellulose fibers. This mechanism appears not to be active in stout beers that are supersaturated solutions of nitrogen and carbon dioxide. In their canned forms these beers require additional technology (widgets) to release the bubbles which will form the head of the beer. We extend the mathematical model of bubble nucleation in carbonated liquids to the case of two gases and show that this nucleation mechanism is active in stout beers, though substantially slower than in carbonated beers and confirm this by observation. A rough calculation suggests that despite the slowness of the process, applying a coating of hollow porous fibers to the inside of a can or bottle could be a potential replacement for widgets.

  16. Cucurbitacin I Inhibits Cell Motility by Indirectly Interfering with Actin Dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Knecht, David A.; LaFleur, Rebecca A.; Kahsai, Alem W.; Argueta, Christian E.; Beshir, Anwar B.; Fenteany, Gabriel

    2010-01-01

    Background Cucurbitacins are plant natural products that inhibit activation of the Janus kinase 2 (JAK2)/signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3) pathway by an unknown mechanism. They are also known to cause changes in the organization of the actin cytoskeleton. Methodology/Principal Findings We show that cucurbitacin I potently inhibits the migration of Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cell sheets during wound closure, as well as the random motility of B16-F1 mouse melanoma cells, but has no effect on movement of Dictyostelium discoideum amoebae. Upon treatment of MDCK or B16-F1 cells with cucurbitacin I, there is a very rapid cessation of motility and gradual accumulation of filamentous actin aggregates. The cellular effect of the compound is similar to that observed when cells are treated with the actin filament-stabilizing agent jasplakinolide. However, we found that, unlike jasplakinolide or phallacidin, cucurbitacin I does not directly stabilize actin filaments. In in vitro actin depolymerization experiments, cucurbitacin I had no effect on the rate of actin filament disassembly at the nanomolar concentrations that inhibit cell migration. At elevated concentrations, the depolymerization rate was also unaffected, although there was a delay in the initiation of depolymerization. Therefore, cucurbitacin I targets some factor involved in cellular actin dynamics other than actin itself. Two candidate proteins that play roles in actin depolymerization are the actin-severing proteins cofilin and gelsolin. Cucurbitacin I possesses electrophilic reactivity that may lead to chemical modification of its target protein, as suggested by structure-activity relationship data. However, mass spectrometry revealed no evidence for modification of purified cofilin or gelsolin by cucurbitacin I. Conclusions/Significance Cucurbitacin I results in accumulation of actin filaments in cells by a unique indirect mechanism. Furthermore, the proximal target of

  17. Microtubule and Actin Interplay Drive Intracellular c-Src Trafficking.

    PubMed

    Arnette, Christopher; Frye, Keyada; Kaverina, Irina

    2016-01-01

    The proto-oncogene c-Src is involved in a variety of signaling processes. Therefore, c-Src spatiotemporal localization is critical for interaction with downstream targets. However, the mechanisms regulating this localization have remained elusive. Previous studies have shown that c-Src trafficking is a microtubule-dependent process that facilitates c-Src turnover in neuronal growth cones. As such, microtubule depolymerization lead to the inhibition of c-Src recycling. Alternatively, c-Src trafficking was also shown to be regulated by RhoB-dependent actin polymerization. Our results show that c-Src vesicles primarily exhibit microtubule-dependent trafficking; however, microtubule depolymerization does not inhibit vesicle movement. Instead, vesicular movement becomes both faster and less directional. This movement was associated with actin polymerization directly at c-Src vesicle membranes. Interestingly, it has been shown previously that c-Src delivery is an actin polymerization-dependent process that relies on small GTPase RhoB at c-Src vesicles. In agreement with this finding, microtubule depolymerization induced significant activation of RhoB, together with actin comet tail formation. These effects occurred downstream of GTP-exchange factor, GEF-H1, which was released from depolymerizing MTs. Accordingly, GEF-H1 activity was necessary for actin comet tail formation at the Src vesicles. Our results indicate that regulation of c-Src trafficking requires both microtubules and actin polymerization, and that GEF-H1 coordinates c-Src trafficking, acting as a molecular switch between these two mechanisms. PMID:26866809

  18. Microtubule and Actin Interplay Drive Intracellular c-Src Trafficking

    PubMed Central

    Arnette, Christopher; Frye, Keyada; Kaverina, Irina

    2016-01-01

    The proto-oncogene c-Src is involved in a variety of signaling processes. Therefore, c-Src spatiotemporal localization is critical for interaction with downstream targets. However, the mechanisms regulating this localization have remained elusive. Previous studies have shown that c-Src trafficking is a microtubule-dependent process that facilitates c-Src turnover in neuronal growth cones. As such, microtubule depolymerization lead to the inhibition of c-Src recycling. Alternatively, c-Src trafficking was also shown to be regulated by RhoB-dependent actin polymerization. Our results show that c-Src vesicles primarily exhibit microtubule-dependent trafficking; however, microtubule depolymerization does not inhibit vesicle movement. Instead, vesicular movement becomes both faster and less directional. This movement was associated with actin polymerization directly at c-Src vesicle membranes. Interestingly, it has been shown previously that c-Src delivery is an actin polymerization-dependent process that relies on small GTPase RhoB at c-Src vesicles. In agreement with this finding, microtubule depolymerization induced significant activation of RhoB, together with actin comet tail formation. These effects occurred downstream of GTP-exchange factor, GEF-H1, which was released from depolymerizing MTs. Accordingly, GEF-H1 activity was necessary for actin comet tail formation at the Src vesicles. Our results indicate that regulation of c-Src trafficking requires both microtubules and actin polymerization, and that GEF-H1 coordinates c-Src trafficking, acting as a molecular switch between these two mechanisms. PMID:26866809

  19. A RhoA and Rnd3 cycle regulates actin reassembly during membrane blebbing.

    PubMed

    Aoki, Kana; Maeda, Fumiyo; Nagasako, Tomoya; Mochizuki, Yuki; Uchida, Seiichi; Ikenouchi, Junichi

    2016-03-29

    The actin cytoskeleton usually lies beneath the plasma membrane. When the membrane-associated actin cytoskeleton is transiently disrupted or the intracellular pressure is increased, the plasma membrane detaches from the cortex and protrudes. Such protruded membrane regions are called blebs. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying membrane blebbing are poorly understood. This study revealed that epidermal growth factor receptor kinase substrate 8 (Eps8) and ezrin are important regulators of rapid actin reassembly for the initiation and retraction of protruded blebs. Live-cell imaging of membrane blebbing revealed that local reassembly of actin filaments occurred at Eps8- and activated ezrin-positive foci of membrane blebs. Furthermore, we found that a RhoA-ROCK-Rnd3 feedback loop determined the local reassembly sites of the actin cortex during membrane blebbing. PMID:26976596

  20. A RhoA and Rnd3 cycle regulates actin reassembly during membrane blebbing.

    PubMed

    Aoki, Kana; Maeda, Fumiyo; Nagasako, Tomoya; Mochizuki, Yuki; Uchida, Seiichi; Ikenouchi, Junichi

    2016-03-29

    The actin cytoskeleton usually lies beneath the plasma membrane. When the membrane-associated actin cytoskeleton is transiently disrupted or the intracellular pressure is increased, the plasma membrane detaches from the cortex and protrudes. Such protruded membrane regions are called blebs. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying membrane blebbing are poorly understood. This study revealed that epidermal growth factor receptor kinase substrate 8 (Eps8) and ezrin are important regulators of rapid actin reassembly for the initiation and retraction of protruded blebs. Live-cell imaging of membrane blebbing revealed that local reassembly of actin filaments occurred at Eps8- and activated ezrin-positive foci of membrane blebs. Furthermore, we found that a RhoA-ROCK-Rnd3 feedback loop determined the local reassembly sites of the actin cortex during membrane blebbing.

  1. Affinity chromatography of immobilized actin and myosin.

    PubMed Central

    Bottomley, R C; Trayer, I P

    1975-01-01

    Actin and myosin were immobilized by coupling them to agarose matrices. Both immobilized G-actin and immobilized myosin retain most of the properties of the proteins in free solution and are reliable over long periods of time. Sepharose-F-actin, under the conditions used in this study, has proved unstable and variable in its properties. Sepharose-G-actin columns were used to bind heavy meromyosin and myosin subfragment 1 specifically and reversibly. The interaction involved is sensitive to variation in ionic strength, such that myosin itself is not retained by the columns at the high salt concentration required for its complete solubilization. Myosin, rendered soluble at low ionic strength by polyalanylation, will interact successfully with the immobilized actin. The latter can distinguish between active and inactive fractions of the proteolytic and polyalanyl myosin derivatives, and was used in the preparation of these molecules. The complexes formed between the myosin derivatives and Sepharose-G-actin can be dissociated by low concentrations of ATP, ADP and pyrophosphate in both the presence and the absence of Mg2+. The G-actin columns were used to evaluate the results of chemical modifications of myosin subfragments on their interactions with actin. F-Actin in free solution is bound specifically and reversibly to columns of insolubilized myosin. Thus, with elution by either ATP or pyrophosphate, actin has been purified in one step from extracts of acetone-dried muscle powder. PMID:241335

  2. Homogeneous nucleation of non-metals and metals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rudek, Markus Martin

    1998-11-01

    Homogeneous nucleation rates as functions of both supersaturation and temperature were measured in an upward thermal diffusion cloud chamber for four n- alkanes, i.e., n-heptane, n-octane, n-nonane, and n- decane, for two n-alcohols, i.e., n-pentanol and n- hexanol, and for m-xylene. Nucleation rates from about 10-4 to 5×100 drops cm-3 s- 1 were obtained in the temperature range, 241 K to 340 K. Their dependences on supersaturation and temperature were compared to predictions of several nucleation theories: Classical Theory, the Internally Consistent Classical Theory, two versions of the Kalikmanov-van Dongen Theory, and the Delale-Meier Theory. Each theory predicted the dependence of the nucleation rate on supersaturation reasonably well, but large temperature dependent correlation factors were needed for quantitative agreement between measured and predicted nucleation rates. However, all substances had a very similar temperature dependence to their multiplicative correction factor. The homogeneous nucleation of supersaturated cesium vapor was investigated in a thermal diffusion cloud chamber operating in both the upward and the downward mode. In the upward operating mode, critical supersaturations were measured in the temperature range, 421K to 554K. In the downward operating mode, it was possible to circumvent experimental difficulties due to phoretic effects which arise at low pressures in measurements in the upward mode. This enabled measurements of critical supersaturations over the temperature range, 289K to 452K. The use of the downward mode enabled the extension of the temperature range of the measurements by 70K towards lower temperatures. This makes cesium the substance whose homogeneous nucleation has been measured, in a thermal diffusion cloud chamber, over the largest range of temperatures, 289K to 554K. These measured critical supersaturations were compared to the predictions of the Internally Consistent version of Classical nucleation Theory and to

  3. CDK5RAP2 stimulates microtubule nucleation by the gamma-tubulin ring complex.

    PubMed

    Choi, Yuk-Kwan; Liu, Pengfei; Sze, Siu Kwan; Dai, Chao; Qi, Robert Z

    2010-12-13

    CDK5RAP2 is a human microcephaly protein that contains a γ-tubulin complex (γ-TuC)-binding domain conserved in Drosophila melanogaster centrosomin and Schizosaccharomyces pombe Mto1p and Pcp1p, which are γ-TuC-tethering proteins. In this study, we show that this domain within CDK5RAP2 associates with the γ-tubulin ring complex (γ-TuRC) to stimulate its microtubule-nucleating activity and is therefore referred to as the γ-TuRC-mediated nucleation activator (γ-TuNA). γ-TuNA but not its γ-TuC-binding-deficient mutant stimulates microtubule nucleation by purified γ-TuRC in vitro and induces extensive, γ-TuRC-dependent nucleation of microtubules in a microtubule regrowth assay. γ-TuRC bound to γ-TuNA contains NME7, FAM128A/B, and actin in addition to γ-tubulin and GCP2-6. RNA interference-mediated depletion of CDK5RAP2 impairs both centrosomal and acentrosomal microtubule nucleation, although γ-TuRC assembly is unaffected. Collectively, these results suggest that the γ-TuNA found in CDK5RAP2 has regulatory functions in γ-TuRC-mediated microtubule nucleation. PMID:21135143

  4. Signalling to actin assembly via the WASP (Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein)-family proteins and the Arp2/3 complex.

    PubMed Central

    Millard, Thomas H; Sharp, Stewart J; Machesky, Laura M

    2004-01-01

    The assembly of a branched network of actin filaments provides the mechanical propulsion that drives a range of dynamic cellular processes, including cell motility. The Arp2/3 complex is a crucial component of such filament networks. Arp2/3 nucleates new actin filaments while bound to existing filaments, thus creating a branched network. In recent years, a number of proteins that activate the filament nucleation activity of Arp2/3 have been identified, most notably the WASP (Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein) family. WASP-family proteins activate the Arp2/3 complex, and consequently stimulate actin assembly, in response to extracellular signals. Structural studies have provided a significant refinement in our understanding of the molecular detail of how the Arp2/3 complex nucleates actin filaments. There has also been much progress towards an understanding of the complicated signalling processes that regulate WASP-family proteins. In addition, the use of gene disruption in a number of organisms has led to new insights into the specific functions of individual WASP-family members. The present review will discuss the Arp2/3 complex and its regulators, in particular the WASP-family proteins. Emphasis will be placed on recent developments in the field that have furthered our understanding of actin dynamics and cell motility. PMID:15040784

  5. Transient assembly of F-actin on the outer mitochondrial membrane contributes to mitochondrial fission

    PubMed Central

    Li, Sunan; Xu, Shan; Roelofs, Brian A.; Boyman, Liron; Lederer, W. Jonathan; Sesaki, Hiromi

    2015-01-01

    In addition to established membrane remodeling roles in various cellular locations, actin has recently emerged as a participant in mitochondrial fission. However, the underlying mechanisms of its participation remain largely unknown. We report that transient de novo F-actin assembly on the mitochondria occurs upon induction of mitochondrial fission and F-actin accumulates on the mitochondria without forming detectable submitochondrial foci. Impairing mitochondrial division through Drp1 knockout or inhibition prolonged the time of mitochondrial accumulation of F-actin and also led to abnormal mitochondrial accumulation of the actin regulatory factors cortactin, cofilin, and Arp2/3 complexes, suggesting that disassembly of mitochondrial F-actin depends on Drp1 activity. Furthermore, down-regulation of actin regulatory proteins led to elongation of mitochondria, associated with mitochondrial accumulation of Drp1. In addition, depletion of cortactin inhibited Mfn2 down-regulation– or FCCP-induced mitochondrial fragmentation. These data indicate that the dynamic assembly and disassembly of F-actin on the mitochondria participates in Drp1-mediated mitochondrial fission. PMID:25547155

  6. Extracellular Inhibitors, Repellents, and Semaphorin/Plexin/MICAL-mediated Actin Filament Disassembly

    PubMed Central

    Hung, Ruei-Jiun; Terman, Jonathan R.

    2011-01-01

    Multiple extracellular signals have been identified that regulate actin dynamics within motile cells, but how these instructive cues present on the cell surface exert their precise effects on the internal actin cytoskeleton is still poorly understood. One particularly interesting class of these cues is a group of extracellular proteins that negatively alter the movement of cells and their processes. Over the years, these types of events have been described using a variety of terms and herein we provide an overview of inhibitory/repulsive cellular phenomena and highlight the largest known protein family of repulsive extracellular cues, the Semaphorins. Specifically, the Semaphorins (Semas) utilize Plexin cell-surface receptors to dramatically collapse the actin cytoskeleton and we summarize what is known of the direct molecular and biochemical mechanisms of Sema-triggered actin filament (F-actin) disassembly. We also discuss new observations from our lab that reveal that the multi-domain oxidoreductase (Redox) enzyme MICAL, an important mediator of Sema/Plexin repulsion, is a novel F-actin disassembly factor. Our results indicate that MICAL triggers Sema/Plexin-mediated reorganization of the F-actin cytoskeleton and suggest a role for specific Redox signaling events in regulating actin dynamics. PMID:21800438

  7. Proneural proteins Achaete and Scute associate with nuclear actin to promote formation of external sensory organs.

    PubMed

    Hsiao, Yun-Ling; Chen, Yu-Ju; Chang, Yi-Jie; Yeh, Hsiao-Fong; Huang, Yi-Chun; Pi, Haiwei

    2014-01-01

    Basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) proneural proteins promote neurogenesis through transcriptional regulation. Although much is known about the tissue-specific regulation of proneural gene expression, how proneural proteins interact with transcriptional machinery to activate downstream target genes is less clear. Drosophila proneural proteins Achaete (Ac) and Scute (Sc) induce external sensory organ formation by activating neural precursor gene expression. Through co-immunoprecipitation and mass spectrometric analyses, we found that nuclear but not cytoplasmic actin associated with the Ac and Sc proteins in Drosophila S2 cells. Daughterless (Da), the common heterodimeric partner of Drosophila bHLH proteins, was observed to associate with nuclear actin through proneural proteins. A yeast two-hybrid assay revealed that the binding specificity between actin and Ac or Sc was conserved in yeast nuclei without the presence of additional Drosophila factors. We further show that actin is required in external sensory organ formation. Reduction in actin gene activity impaired proneural-protein-dependent expression of the neural precursor genes, as well as formation of neural precursors. Furthermore, increased nuclear actin levels, obtained by expression of nucleus-localized actin, elevated Ac-Da-dependent gene transcription as well as Ac-mediated external sensory organ formation. Taken together, our in vivo and in vitro observations suggest a novel link for actin in proneural-protein-mediated transcriptional activation and neural precursor differentiation.

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-11-01

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

  9. 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

  10. Structural and Functional Dissection of the Abp1 ADFH Actin-binding Domain Reveals Versatile In Vivo Adapter Functions

    SciTech Connect

    Quintero-Monzon,O.; Rodal, A.; Strokopytov, B.; Almo, S.; Goode, B.

    2005-01-01

    Abp1 is a multidomain protein that regulates the Arp2/3 complex and links proteins involved in endocytosis to the actin cytoskeleton. All of the proposed cellular functions of Abp1 involve actin filament binding, yet the actin binding site(s) on Abp1 have not been identified, nor has the importance of actin binding for Abp1 localization and function in vivo been tested. Here, we report the crystal structure of the Saccharomyces cerevisiae Abp1 actin-binding actin depolymerizing factor homology (ADFH) domain and dissect its activities by mutagenesis. Abp1-ADFH domain and ADF/cofilin structures are similar, and they use conserved surfaces to bind actin; however, there are also key differences that help explain their differential effects on actin dynamics. Using point mutations, we demonstrate that actin binding is required for localization of Abp1 in vivo, the lethality caused by Abp1 overexpression, and the ability of Abp1 to activate Arp2/3 complex. Furthermore, we genetically uncouple ABP1 functions that overlap with SAC6, SLA1, and SLA2, showing they require distinct combinations of activities and interactions. Together, our data provide the first structural and functional view of the Abp1-actin interaction and show that Abp1 has distinct cellular roles as an adapter, linking different sets of ligands for each function.

  11. The effect of ultrasonic waves on the nucleation of pure water and degassed water.

    PubMed

    Yu, Deyang; Liu, Baolin; Wang, Bochun

    2012-05-01

    In order to clarify the mechanism of nucleation of ice induced by ultrasound, ultrasonic waves have been applied to supercooled pure water and degassed water, respectively. For each experiment, water sample is cooled at a constant cooling rate of 0.15 °C/min and the ultrasonic waves are applied from the water temperature of 0 °C until the water in a sample vessel nucleates. This nucleation temperature is measured. The use of ultrasound increased the nucleation temperature of both degassed water and pure water. However, the undercooling temperature for pure water to nucleate is less than that of degassed water. It is concluded that cavitation and fluctuations of density, energy and temperature induced by ultrasound are factors that affect the nucleation of water. Cavitation is a major factor for sonocrystallisation of ice. PMID:21925917

  12. Sensitivity of partially purified ice nucleation activity of Fusarium acuminatum SRSF 616.

    PubMed

    Humphreys, T L; Castrillo, L A; Lee, M R

    2001-05-01

    Factors that affect bacterial ice nucleation, including growth medium, growth phase, nutrient deprivation, and cold-temperature exposure, were investigated in the ice nucleation active (INA) fungus Fusarium acuminatum SRSF 616. Ice nucleation activity remained relatively constant throughout the growth cycle, and the cell-free culture supernatant consistently displayed higher ice nucleation activity than the hyphal pellet. Although nutrient starvation and low-temperature exposure enhance bacterial ice nucleation activity, reducing the concentration of C, N, or P in synthetischer nährstoffarmer broth (SNB) did not increase fungal ice nucleation activity, nor did exposure to 4 degrees C or 15 degrees C. From the SNB supernatant, selected INA chromatography fractions were obtained that demonstrated increased sensitivity to proteinase K and heat compared with culture supernatant. We propose that partial purification of the fungal ice nuclei resulted in removal of low-molecular-weight stabilizing factors. PMID:11400053

  13. Condensation of a supersaturated vapor. XII. The homogeneous nucleation of the n-alkanes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rudek, Markus M.; Fisk, Jeffery A.; Chakarov, Vasil M.; Katz, Joseph L.

    1996-09-01

    Homogeneous nucleation rates as functions of both supersaturation and temperature were measured in an upward thermal diffusion cloud chamber for four n-alkanes: n-heptane, n-octane, n-nonane, and n-decane. Nucleation rates from about 10-4 to 5×100 drops cm-3 s-1 were obtained in the temperature range, 241 to 330 K. Their dependences on supersaturation and temperature were compared to predictions of several nucleation theories: the internally consistent Classical theory, two versions of the Kalikmanov-van Dongen theory, and the Delale-Meier theory. Each theory predicted the dependence of the nucleation rate on supersaturation reasonably well. However, large temperature dependent correction factors were needed for quantitative agreement between measured and predicted nucleation rates. A plot of the ratio of measured to predicted nucleation rates vs reduced temperature shows that all n-alkanes investigated can be represented to within a factor of ten by a single, best fit line.

  14. Filopodia-like actin cables position nuclei in association with perinuclear actin in Drosophila nurse cells.

    PubMed

    Huelsmann, Sven; Ylänne, Jari; Brown, Nicholas H

    2013-09-30

    Controlling the position of the nucleus is vital for a number of cellular processes from yeast to humans. In Drosophila nurse cells, nuclear positioning is crucial during dumping, when nurse cells contract and expel their contents into the oocyte. We provide evidence that in nurse cells, continuous filopodia-like actin cables, growing from the plasma membrane and extending to the nucleus, achieve nuclear positioning. These actin cables move nuclei away from ring canals. When nurse cells contract, actin cables associate laterally with the nuclei, in some cases inducing nuclear turning so that actin cables become partially wound around the nuclei. Our data suggest that a perinuclear actin meshwork connects actin cables to nuclei via actin-crosslinking proteins such as the filamin Cheerio. We provide a revised model for how actin structures position nuclei in nurse cells, employing evolutionary conserved machinery.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-09-15

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

  16. Entropic effect on the rate of dislocation nucleation.

    PubMed

    Ryu, Seunghwa; Kang, Keonwook; Cai, Wei

    2011-03-29

    Dislocation nucleation is essential to our understanding of plastic deformation, ductility, and mechanical strength of crystalline materials. Molecular dynamics simulation has played an important role in uncovering the fundamental mechanisms of dislocation nucleation, but its limited timescale remains a significant challenge for studying nucleation at experimentally relevant conditions. Here we show that dislocation nucleation rates can be accurately predicted over a wide range of conditions by determining the activation free energy from umbrella sampling. Our data reveal very large activation entropies, which contribute a multiplicative factor of many orders of magnitude to the nucleation rate. The activation entropy at constant strain is caused by thermal expansion, with negligible contribution from the vibrational entropy. The activation entropy at constant stress is significantly larger than that at constant strain, as a result of thermal softening. The large activation entropies are caused by anharmonic effects, showing the limitations of the harmonic approximation widely used for rate estimation in solids. Similar behaviors are expected to occur in other nucleation processes in solids. PMID:21402933

  17. Nucleation and growth of zinc from chloride concentrated solutions

    SciTech Connect

    Trejo, G.; Ortega B, R.; Meas V, Y.; Ozil, P.; Chainet, E.; Nguyen, B.

    1998-12-01

    The electrodeposition of metals is a complex phenomenon influenced by a number of factors that modify the rates of nucleation and growth and determine the properties of the deposits. In this work the authors study the influence of the zinc chloride (ZnCl{sub 2}) concentration on the zinc nucleation process on glassy carbon, in a KCl electrolyte under conditions close to those employed in commercial acid deposition baths for zinc. The electrochemical study was performed using cyclic voltammetry and potentiostatic current-time transients. The charge-transfer coefficient and the formal potential for ZnCl{sub 2} reduction were evaluated from cyclic voltammetry experiments. The nucleation process was analyzed by comparing the transients obtained with the known dimensionless (i/i{sub m}){sup 2} vs. t/t{sub m} response for instantaneous or progressive nucleation. The results show that the nucleation process and the number density of sites are dependent on ZnCl{sub 2} concentration. Scanning electron microscopy analysis of the deposits shows that the deposits are homogeneous and compact although a change in the morphology is observed as a function of ZnCl{sub 2} concentration. Evaluation of the corrosion resistance reveals the influence of the nucleation process on the subsequent corrosion resistance of the zinc deposits.

  18. Nucleation of mesospheric cloud particles: Sensitivities and limits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilms, Henrike; Rapp, Markus; Kirsch, Annekatrin

    2016-03-01

    Nucleation of mesospheric ice particles is thought to occur via heterogeneous nucleation on meteor smoke particles. However, several factors determining the nucleation rate are poorly known. To study the effect of uncertainties in the nucleation rate on cloud properties, we use the Community Aerosol and Radiation Model for Atmospheres and systematically vary the nucleation rate over ±10 orders of magnitude. In one set of simulations, the background state of the atmosphere is described by climatological conditions. In a second set, gravity wave-perturbed profiles from the Kühlungsborn Mechanistic general Circulation Model (KMCM) are used with typical temperature (vertical wind) perturbations at the mesopause on the order of 9 K (0.45 m/s). The resulting noctilucent cloud (NLC) characteristics are compared to lidar and satellite measurements. Realistic NLCs compared to the lidar measurements can only be modeled if the nucleation rate is reduced by up to 3 orders of magnitude compared to standard assumptions. For the same cases, the simulated NLCs compare best to the satellite measurements if the nucleation rate is reduced by 2 orders of magnitude or more. Dynamical processes at the mesopause strongly influence the NLC development. In a gravity wave-perturbed atmosphere, the ice particles have only limited time for nucleation and growth. The growth time is limited by the vertical wind, because the vertical wind determines the residence time of the ice particles in the supersaturated region. Since the vertical wind amplitudes reach 1.5 m/s in KMCM (compared to a mean upwelling of ˜4 cm/s in the climatology), the ice particles remain significantly smaller in a gravity wave-perturbed atmosphere than in climatological background conditions.

  19. Contribution of nuclear actin to transcription regulation.

    PubMed

    Yamazaki, Shota; Yamamoto, Koji; Harata, Masahiko

    2015-06-01

    Actin, an integral component of the cytoskeleton, plays crucial roles in a variety of cell functions, including cell migration, adhesion, polarity and shape change. Studies performed during the last couple of decades have revealed that the actin also exists in the nucleus. However, the function and properties of nuclear actin remained elusive so far. Recently, we showed that an actin tagged with EYFP and fused with a nuclear localization signal (EYFP-NLS-actin) formed visible filamentous (F)-actin bundles in cells. To obtain further details about the individual genes that are affected by the nuclear actin, we have used the microarray analysis to determine the changes in the expression levels of RNAs in HeLa cells as a result of EYFP-NLS-actin expression. Our results suggest that the nuclear actin plays a role in the activation of genes rather than their repression. The data has been deposited in the Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO) database under the accession number GSE59799.

  20. Phosphorylation and actin activation of brain myosin.

    PubMed Central

    Barylko, B; Sobieszek, A

    1983-01-01

    A method is described for obtaining brain myosin that shows significant actin activation, after phosphorylation with chicken gizzard myosin light chain kinase. Myosin with this activity could be obtained only via the initial purification of brain actomyosin. The latter complex, isolated by a method similar to that used for smooth muscle, contained actin, myosin, tropomyosin of the non-muscle type and another actin-binding protein of approximately 100,000 daltons. From the presence of a specific myosin light chain kinase and phosphatase in brain tissue it is suggested that the regulation of actin-myosin interaction operates via phosphorylation and dephosphorylation of myosin. Images Fig. 1. Fig. 3. PMID:11894951

  1. 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

    2016-03-01

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

  2. 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. PMID:26915738

  3. 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.

  4. Broadening the Spectrum of Actin-Based Protrusive Activity Mediated by Arp2/3 Complex-Facilitated Polymerization: Motility of Cytoplasmic Ridges and Tubular Projections

    PubMed Central

    Henson, John H.; Gianakas, Anastasia D.; Henson, Lauren H.; Lakin, Christina L.; Voss, Meagen K.; Bewersdorf, Joerg; Oldenbourg, Rudolf; Morris, Robert L.

    2014-01-01

    Arp2/3 complex-facilitated actin polymerization plays an essential role in a variety of cellular functions including motility, adherence, endocytosis and trafficking. In the present study we employ the sea urchin coelomocyte experimental model system to test the hypotheses that Arp2/3 complex-nucleated actin assembly mediates the motility of two unusual cellular protrusions; the cytoplasmic ridges present during coelomocyte spreading, and inducible, tubular-shaped, and neurite-like projections. Our investigations couple pharmacological manipulation employing inhibitors of actin polymerization and the Arp2/3 complex with a wide array of imaging methods including digitally enhanced phase contrast, DIC and polarization light microscopy of live cells; conventional, confocal and super-resolution light microscopy of fluorescently labeled cells; and scanning and transmission electron microscopy. Taken together, the results of this study indicate that Arp2/3 complex-facilitated actin polymerization underlies the motility of coelomocyte cytoplasmic ridges and tubular projections, that these processes are related to each other, and that they have been preliminarily identified in other cell types. The results also highlight the broad spectrum of actin-based protrusive activities dependent on the Arp2/3 complex and provide additional insights into the pervasive nature of this ubiquitous actin nucleator. Furthermore we provide the first evidence of a possible mechanistic difference between the impacts of the small molecule drugs BDM and CK666 on the Arp2/3 complex. PMID:25111797

  5. Actin filament dynamics impacts keratinocyte stem cell maintenance

    PubMed Central

    Nanba, Daisuke; Toki, Fujio; Matsushita, Natsuki; Matsushita, Sachi; Higashiyama, Shigeki; Barrandon, Yann

    2013-01-01

    Cultured human epidermal keratinocyte stem cells (holoclones) are crucial for regenerative medicine for burns and genetic disorders. In serial culture, holoclones progressively lose their proliferative capacity to become transient amplifying cells with limited growth (paraclones), a phenomenon termed clonal conversion. Although it negatively impacts the culture lifespan and the success of cell transplantation, little is known on the molecular mechanism underlying clonal conversion. Here, we show that holoclones and paraclones differ in their actin filament organization, with actin bundles distributed radially in holoclones and circumferentially in paraclones. Moreover, actin organization sets the stage for a differing response to epidermal growth factor (EGF), since EGF signalling induces a rapid expansion of colony size in holoclones and a significant reduction in paraclones. Furthermore, inhibition of PI3K or Rac1 in holoclones results in the reorganization of actin filaments in a pattern that is similar to that of paraclones. Importantly, continuous Rac1 inhibition in holoclones results in clonal conversion and reduction of growth potential. Together, our data connect loss of stem cells to EGF-induced colony dynamics governed by Rac1. PMID:23554171

  6. Evaluation of actinic cheilitis using fluorescence lifetime spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saito Nogueira, Marcelo; Cosci, Alessandro; Pratavieira, Sebastião.; Takahama, Ademar; Souza Azevedo, Rebeca; Kurachi, Cristina

    2016-03-01

    Actinic cheilitis is a potentially malignant disorder that mostly affects the vermilion border of the lower lip and can lead to squamous cell carcinoma. Because of its heterogeneous clinical aspect, it is difficult to indicate representative biopsy area. Late diagnosis is a limiting factor of therapeutic possibilities available to treat oral cancer. The diagnosis of actinic cheilitis is mainly based on clinical and histopathological analysis and it is a time consuming procedure to get the results. Information about the organization and chemical composition of the tissues can be obtained using fluorescence lifetime spectroscopy techniques without the need for biopsy. The main targeted fluorophores are NADH (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide) and FAD (flavin adenine dinucleotide), which have free and bound states, each one with different average lifetimes. The average lifetimes for free and bound NADH and FAD change according to tissue metabolic alterations and allow a quick and non-invasive clinical investigation of injuries and to help clinicians with the early diagnosis of actinic cheilitis. This study aims to evaluate the fluorescence lifetime parameters at the discrimination of three degrees of epithelial dysplasia, the most important predictor of malignant development, described in up to 100% of actinic cheilitis cases.

  7. Molecular and structural basis for redox regulation of beta-actin.

    PubMed

    Lassing, Ingrid; Schmitzberger, Florian; Björnstedt, Mikael; Holmgren, Arne; Nordlund, Pär; Schutt, Clarence E; Lindberg, Uno

    2007-07-01

    An essential consequence of growth factor-mediated signal transduction is the generation of intracellular H(2)O(2). It operates as a second messenger in the control of actin microfilament dynamics, causing rapid and dramatic changes in the morphology and motile activity of stimulated cells. Little is understood about the molecular mechanisms causing these changes in the actin system. Here, it is shown that H(2)O(2) acts directly upon several levels of this system, and some of the mechanistic effects are detailed. We describe the impact of oxidation on the polymerizability of non-muscle beta/gamma-actin and compare with that of muscle alpha-actin. Oxidation of beta/gamma-actin can cause a complete loss of polymerizability, crucially, reversible by the thioredoxin system. Further, oxidation of the actin impedes its interaction with profilin and causes depolymerization of filamentous actin. The effects of oxidation are critically dependent on the nucleotide state and the concentration of Ca(2+). We have determined the crystal structure of oxidized beta-actin to a resolution of 2.6 A. The arrangement in the crystal implies an antiparallel homodimer connected by an intermolecular disulfide bond involving cysteine 374. Our data indicate that this dimer forms under non-polymerizing and oxidizing conditions. We identify oxidation of cysteine 272 in the crystallized actin dimer, likely to a cysteine sulfinic acid. In beta/gamma-actin, this is the cysteine residue most reactive towards H(2)O(2) in solution, and we suggest plausible structural determinants for its reactivity. No other oxidative modification was obvious in the structure, highlighting the specificity of the oxidation by H(2)O(2). Possible consequences of the observed effects in a cellular context and their potential relevance are discussed.

  8. A Role for Nuclear Actin in HDAC 1 and 2 Regulation.

    PubMed

    Serebryannyy, Leonid A; Cruz, Christina M; de Lanerolle, Primal

    2016-06-27

    Class I histone deacetylases (HDACs) are known to remove acetyl groups from histone tails. This liberates positive charges on the histone tail and allows for tighter winding of DNA, preventing transcription factor binding and gene activation. Although the functions of HDAC proteins are becoming apparent both biochemically and clinically, how this class of proteins is regulated remains poorly understood. We identified a novel interaction between nuclear actin and HDAC 1 and HDAC 2. Nuclear actin has been previously shown to interact with a growing list of nuclear proteins including chromatin remodeling complexes, transcription factors and RNA polymerases. We find that monomeric actin is able to bind the class I HDAC complex. Furthermore, increasing the concentration of actin in HeLa nuclear extracts was able to suppress overall HDAC function. Conversely, polymerizing nuclear actin increased HDAC activity and decreased histone acetylation. Moreover, the interaction between class I HDACs and nuclear actin was found to be activity dependent. Together, our data suggest nuclear actin is able to regulate HDAC 1 and 2 activity.

  9. A Role for Nuclear Actin in HDAC 1 and 2 Regulation

    PubMed Central

    Serebryannyy, Leonid A.; Cruz, Christina M.; de Lanerolle, Primal

    2016-01-01

    Class I histone deacetylases (HDACs) are known to remove acetyl groups from histone tails. This liberates positive charges on the histone tail and allows for tighter winding of DNA, preventing transcription factor binding and gene activation. Although the functions of HDAC proteins are becoming apparent both biochemically and clinically, how this class of proteins is regulated remains poorly understood. We identified a novel interaction between nuclear actin and HDAC 1 and HDAC 2. Nuclear actin has been previously shown to interact with a growing list of nuclear proteins including chromatin remodeling complexes, transcription factors and RNA polymerases. We find that monomeric actin is able to bind the class I HDAC complex. Furthermore, increasing the concentration of actin in HeLa nuclear extracts was able to suppress overall HDAC function. Conversely, polymerizing nuclear actin increased HDAC activity and decreased histone acetylation. Moreover, the interaction between class I HDACs and nuclear actin was found to be activity dependent. Together, our data suggest nuclear actin is able to regulate HDAC 1 and 2 activity. PMID:27345839

  10. Force of an actin spring

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2003-03-01

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

  11. Classical nucleation theory from a dynamical approach to nucleation.

    PubMed

    Lutsko, James F; Durán-Olivencia, Miguel A

    2013-06-28

    It is shown that diffusion-limited classical nucleation theory (CNT) can be recovered as a simple limit of the recently proposed dynamical theory of nucleation based on fluctuating hydrodynamics [J. F. Lutsko, J. Chem. Phys. 136, 034509 (2012)]. The same framework is also used to construct a more realistic theory in which clusters have finite interfacial width. When applied to the dilute solution/dense solution transition in globular proteins, it is found that the extension gives corrections to the nucleation rate even for the case of small supersaturations due to changes in the monomer distribution function and to the excess free energy. It is also found that the monomer attachment/detachment picture breaks down at high supersaturations corresponding to clusters smaller than about 100 molecules. The results also confirm the usual assumption that most important corrections to CNT can be achieved by means of improved estimates of the free energy barrier. The theory also illustrates two topics that have received considerable attention in the recent literature on nucleation: the importance sub-dominant corrections to the capillary model for the free energy and of the correct choice of the reaction coordinate.

  12. Electrical Properties of Poly-Lactic Acid with Nucleating Agent Added

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shinyama, Katsuyoshi; Oi, Toru; Fujita, Shigetaka

    We examined electrical properties of polylactic acid (PLA) with nucleating agent added. At that time, nucleating agent was added to PLA was then heat-treated at 100°C for 30 seconds. The crystallinity of the nucleating agent was added to PLA increased to more than 40%, and its crystallization speed also increased significantly. The temperature dependence of the conductivity (σ) was investigated, the σ of PLA to which nucleating agent had been added showed the tendency to become lower than the σ of PLA to which nucleating agent had not been added in σ at temperatures higher than 60°C. Furthermore, the temperature dependence of the dielectric breakdown strength (EB) was investigated, EB of nucleating agent was added to PLA was around 5.0 MV/cm at a temperature of 25°C. Of particular note was the fact that EB of nucleating agent was added to PLA measured at 100°C was around 4.7 MV/cm, around 3 times greater than the EB value for PLA to which nucleating agent had not been added. The temperature dependence of the relative dielectric constant (εr‧) and the relative dielectric loss factor (εr″) was investigated, the peak dielectric absorption value of εr″ for the PLA to which nucleating agent had been added showed a tendency that lower than that of the PLA to which nucleating agent had not been added.

  13. Effect of alpha-actinin on actin structure. Actin ATPase activity.

    PubMed

    Singh, I; Goll, D E; Robson, R M

    1981-08-28

    Alpha-Actinin increases the ATPase activity of actin by up to 84%, depending un pH, divalent cations present and the added Mg2+: ATP ratio. Dithiothreitol decreases actin ATPase activity approx. 20% but does not reduce the ability of alpha-actinin to increase actin ATP activity. Increasing amounts of added alpha-actinin up to 1 mos alpha-actinin to 49 mol actin cause in increasing increment in actin ATPase activity, but adding alpha-actinin beyond 1 mol alpha-actinin to 49 mol actin elicits only small additional increments in activity. Actin ATPase activity ranges from approx 100 nmol Pi/mg actin per h (4.3 mol Pi/mol actin per h) at high levels (10 mM) of ATP in the presence of lower amounts (1 mM) of added mg2+ to approx. 12.5 nmol Pi/mg actin per h (0.52 mol Pi/mol actin per h) at high pH (8.5) or at low levels (0.5-1.0 mM) of ATP in the presence of higher amounts (10 mM) of added Mg2+ ATp uncomplexed with Mg2+ inhibits the ability of alpha-actinin to increase F-actin ATPase activity. Activities with different divalent cations showed that the actin ATPase in these studies, which was 1/100 as great as Mg2+-modified actomyosin ATPase activity, was not due to trace amounts of myosin contaminating the actin preparations. The results are consistent with the concept that alpha-actinin can alter the structure of actin monomers. PMID:6456018

  14. Change in the actin-myosin subfragment 1 interaction during actin polymerization.

    PubMed

    Chaussepied, P; Kasprzak, A A

    1989-12-01

    To better characterize the conformational differences of G- and F-actin, we have compared the interaction between G- and F-actin with myosin subfragment 1 (S1) which had part of its F-actin binding site (residues 633-642) blocked by a complementary peptide or "antipeptide" (Chaussepied, P., and Morales, M. F. (1988) Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 85, 7471-7475). Light scattering, sedimentation, and electron microscopy measurements showed that, with the antipeptide covalently attached to the S1 heavy chain, S1 was not capable of inducing G-actin polymerization in the absence of salt. Moreover, the antipeptide-carrying S1 did not change the fluorescence polarization of 5-[2-(iodoacetyl)-aminoethyl]aminonaphthalene-1-sulfonic acid (1,5-IAEDANS)-labeled G-actin or of 1,5-IAEDANS-labeled actin dimer, compared to the control S1. This result, interpreted as a lack of interaction between G-actin and antipeptide-carrying S1, was confirmed further by the following experiments: in the presence of G-actin, antipeptide.S1 heavy chain was not protected against trypsin and papain proteolysis, and G-actin could not be cross-linked to antipeptide.S1 by 1-ethyl-3[-3-(dimethylamino)propyl]carbodiimide. In contrast, similar experiments showed that antipeptide.S1 was able to interact with nascent F-actin and with F-actin. Thus, blocking the stretch 633-642 of S1 heavy chain by the antipeptide strongly inhibits G-actin-S1 interaction but only slightly alters F-actin-S1 contact. We, therefore postulate that this stretch of skeletal S1 heavy chain is essential for G-actin-S1 interaction and that the G-F transformation generates new S1 binding site(s) on the actin molecule.

  15. The effect of nucleation and crystal growth on isotope fractionation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Z.; Gaetani, G. A.; Liu, C.; Hu, P.; Cohen, A. L.

    2011-12-01

    A set of "free-drift" experiments is conducted to precipitate aragonites from seawater at controlled temperature (25-55oC) and CO2 degassing rate in the lab. These experiments help to calibrate a coupled degassing-nucleation-crystal growth model, which not only can reproduce measured pH and alkalinity over the course of the experiments, but also predict crystal size within a factor of two of the measured values, the activation energy of the precipitation reaction constant to be 24.3±1.3 kJ/mol, the surface energy of aragonite crystals that is consistent with estimation by atomistic simulation and crystal morphology. Forward simulation of our precipitation experiments using calibrated parameters reveal the supersaturation of seawater arrives at a critical value (~13-50 in our experiment) before nucleation initiates and when the concentration of the total dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) reduces to that of Ca. This result cannot be explained by classical nucleation theory (CNT), but is consistent with recently proposed "two-step" nucleation model, implying solution chemistry determines when the nucleation starts but the surface properties of crystal (surface energy and crystal morphology) determine the size of the crystal. It also requires not only carbonate ions but all other DIC species within a sphere of a-few-micron radius actively participate into the nucleation process. This model is then used as a framework to understand oxygen and Mg isotope fractionation between carbonates and fluid. Our results suggest nucleation and crystal growth will affect isotope fractionation at different levels depending on experimental conditions. A quantitative analysis using our model can help reconcile the isotope fractionation factors determined by various experimental approaches.

  16. Unconventional actin conformations localize on intermediate filaments in mitosis

    SciTech Connect

    Hubert, Thomas; Vandekerckhove, Joel; Gettemans, Jan

    2011-03-04

    Research highlights: {yields} Unconventional actin conformations colocalize with vimentin on a cage-like structure in metaphase HEK 293T cells. {yields} These conformations are detected with the anti-actin antibodies 1C7 ('lower dimer') and 2G2 ('nuclear actin'), but not C4 (monomeric actin). {yields} Mitotic unconventional actin cables are independent of filamentous actin or microtubules. {yields} Unconventional actin colocalizes with vimentin on a nocodazole-induced perinuclear dense mass of cables. -- Abstract: Different structural conformations of actin have been identified in cells and shown to reside in distinct subcellular locations of cells. In this report, we describe the localization of actin on a cage-like structure in metaphase HEK 293T cells. Actin was detected with the anti-actin antibodies 1C7 and 2G2, but not with the anti-actin antibody C4. Actin contained in this structure is independent of microtubules and actin filaments, and colocalizes with vimentin. Taking advantage of intermediate filament collapse into a perinuclear dense mass of cables when microtubules are depolymerized, we were able to relocalize actin to such structures. We hypothesize that phosphorylation of intermediate filaments at mitosis entry triggers the recruitment of different actin conformations to mitotic intermediate filaments. Storage and partition of the nuclear actin and antiparallel 'lower dimer' actin conformations between daughter cells possibly contribute to gene transcription and transient actin filament dynamics at G1 entry.

  17. Synthetic peptides that cause F-actin bundling and block actin depolymerization

    DOEpatents

    Sederoff, Heike; Huber, Steven C; Larabell, Carolyn A

    2011-10-18

    Synthetic peptides derived from sucrose synthase, and having homology to actin and actin-related proteins, sharing a common motif, useful for causing acting bundling and preventing actin depolymerization. Peptides exhibiting the common motif are described, as well as specific synthetic peptides which caused bundled actin and inhibit actin depolymerization. These peptides can be useful for treating a subject suffering from a disease characterized by cells having neoplastic growth, for anti-cancer therapeutics, delivered to subjects solely, or concomitantly or sequentially with other known cancer therapeutics. These peptides can also be used for stabilizing microfilaments in living cells and inhibiting growth of cells.

  18. Probing the actin-auxin oscillator

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    The directional transport of the plant hormone auxin depends on transcellular gradients of auxin-efflux carriers that continuously cycle between plasma membrane and intracellular compartments. This cycling has been proposed to depend on actin filaments. However, the role of actin for the polarity of auxin transport has been disputed. To get insight into this question, actin bundling was induced by overexpression of the actin-binding domain of talin in tobacco BY-2 cells and in rice plants. This bundling can be reverted by addition of auxins, which allows to address the role of actin organization on the flux of auxin. In both systems, the reversion of a normal actin configuration can be restored by addition of exogenous auxins and this fully restores the respective auxin-dependent functions. These findings lead to a model of a self-referring regulatory circuit between polar auxin transport and actin organization. To further dissect the actin-auxin oscillator, we used photoactivated release of caged auxin in tobacco cells to demonstrate that auxin gradients can be manipulated at a subcellular level. PMID:20023411

  19. Colchicine activates actin polymerization by microtubule depolymerization.

    PubMed

    Jung, H I; Shin, I; Park, Y M; Kang, K W; Ha, K S

    1997-06-30

    Swiss 3T3 fibroblasts were treated with the microtubule-disrupting agent colchicine to study any interaction between microtubule dynamics and actin polymerization. Colchicine increased the amount of filamentous actin (F-actin), in a dose- and time-dependent manner with a significant increase at 1 h by about 130% over control level. Confocal microscopic observation showed that colchicine increased F-actin contents by stress fiber formation without inducing membrane ruffling. Colchicine did not activate phospholipase C and phospholipase D, whereas lysophosphatidic acid did, indicating that colchicine may have a different mechanism of actin polymerization regulation from LPA. A variety of microtubule-disrupting agents stimulated actin polymerization in Swiss 3T3 and Rat-2 fibroblasts as did colchicine, but the microtubule-stabilizing agent taxol inhibited actin polymerization induced by the above microtubule-disrupting agents. In addition, colchicine-induced actin polymerization was blocked by two protein phosphatase inhibitors, okadaic acid and calyculin A. These results suggest that microtubule depolymerization activates stress fiber formation by serine/threonine dephosphorylation in fibroblasts. PMID:9264034

  20. ERK reinforces actin polymerization to power persistent edge protrusion during motility

    PubMed Central

    Mendoza, Michelle C.; Vilela, Marco; Juarez, Jesus E.; Blenis, John; Danuser, Gaudenz

    2016-01-01

    Cells move through perpetual protrusion and retraction cycles at the leading edge. These cycles are coordinated with substrate adhesion and retraction of the cell rear. Here, we tracked spatial and temporal fluctuations in the molecular activities of individual moving cells to elucidate how extracellular regulated kinase (ERK) signaling controlled the dynamics of protrusion and retraction cycles. ERK is activated by many cell-surface receptors and we found that ERK signaling specifically reinforced cellular protrusions so that they translated into rapid, sustained forward motion of the leading edge. Using quantitative fluorescent speckle microscopy (qFSM) and cross-correlation analysis, we showed that ERK controlled the rate and timing of actin polymerization by promoting the recruitment of the actin nucleator Arp2/3 to the leading edge. Arp2/3 activity generates branched actin networks that can produce pushing force. These findings support a model in which surges in ERK activity induced by extracellular cues enhance Arp2/3-mediated actin polymerization to generate protrusion power phases with enough force to counteract increasing membrane tension and to promote sustained motility. PMID:25990957

  1. Neutrophils establish rapid and robust WAVE complex polarity in an actin-dependent fashion

    PubMed Central

    Millius, Arthur; Dandekar, Sheel N.; Houk, Andrew R.; Weiner, Orion D.

    2009-01-01

    Asymmetric intracellular signals enable cells to migrate in response to external cues. The multiprotein WAVE (SCAR/WASF) complex activates the actin-nucleating Arp2/3 complex [1-4] and localizes to propagating “waves”, which direct actin assembly during neutrophil migration [5, 6]. Here, we observe similar WAVE complex dynamics in other mammalian cells and analyze WAVE complex dynamics during the establishment of neutrophil polarity. Earlier models proposed that either spatially-biased generation [7] or selection of protrusions [8] enables chemotaxis. These models require existing morphological polarity to control protrusions. Similar spatially-biased generation and selection of WAVE complex recruitment occur in morphologically unpolarized neutrophils during the development of their first protrusions. Additionally, several mechanisms limit WAVE complex recruitment during polarization and movement: intrinsic cues restrict WAVE complex distribution during the establishment of polarity, and asymmetric intracellular signals constrain WAVE complex distribution in morphologically polarized cells. External gradients can overcome both intrinsic biases and control WAVE complex localization. Following latrunculin-mediated inhibition of actin polymerization, addition and removal of agonist gradients globally recruits and releases the WAVE complex from the membrane. Under these conditions the WAVE complex no longer polarizes, despite the presence of strong external gradients. Thus, actin polymer and the WAVE complex reciprocally interact during polarization. PMID:19200726

  2. Actin-Mediated Endocytosis Limits Intracellular Cr Accumulation and Cr Toxicity during Chromate Stress

    PubMed Central

    Holland, Sara L.; Avery, Simon V.

    2009-01-01

    Chromate toxicity is well documented, but the underlying toxic mechanism(s) has yet to be fully elucidated. Following a Cr toxicity screen against > 6000 heterozygous yeast mutants, here we show that Cr resistance requires normal function of the cortical actin cytoskeleton. Furthermore, Cr-stressed yeast cells exhibited an increased number of actin patches, the sites of endocytosis. This was coincident with a marked stimulation of endocytosis following Cr exposure. Genetic dissection of actin nucleation from endocytosis revealed that endocytosis, specifically, was required for Cr resistance. A series of further endocytosis mutants (sac6Δ, chc1Δ, end3Δ) exhibited elevated Cr sensitivity. These mutants also showed markedly elevated cellular Cr accumulation, explaining their sensitivities. In wild-type cells, an initial endocytosis-independent phase of Cr uptake was followed by an endocytosis-dependent decline in Cr accumulation. The results indicate that actin-mediated endocytosis is required to limit Cr accumulation and toxicity. It is proposed that this involves ubiquitin-dependent endocytic inactivation of a plasma membrane Cr transporter(s). We showed that such an action was not dependent on the transporters that have been characterized to date, the sulfate (and chromate) permeases Sul1p and Sul2p. PMID:19628586

  3. Actin-Based Transport Adapts Polarity Domain Size to Local Cellular Curvature.

    PubMed

    Bonazzi, Daria; Haupt, Armin; Tanimoto, Hirokazu; Delacour, Delphine; Salort, Delphine; Minc, Nicolas

    2015-10-19

    Intracellular structures and organelles such as the nucleus, the centrosome, or the mitotic spindle typically scale their size to cell size [1]. Similarly, cortical polarity domains built around the active form of conserved Rho-GTPases, such as Cdc42p, exhibit widths that may range over two orders of magnitudes in cells with different sizes and shapes [2-6]. The establishment of such domains typically involves positive feedback loops based on reaction-diffusion and/or actin-mediated vesicle transport [3, 7, 8]. How these elements may adapt polarity domain size to cellular geometry is not known. Here, by tracking the width of successive oscillating Cdc42-GTP domains in fission yeast spores [9], we find that domain width scales with local cell-surface radii of curvature over an 8-fold range, independently of absolute cell volume, surface, or Cdc42-GTP concentration. This local scaling requires formin-nucleated cortical actin cables and the fusion of secretory vesicles transported along these cables with the membrane. These data suggest that reaction-diffusion may set a minimal domain size and that secretory vesicle transport along actin cables may dilute and extend polarity domains to adapt their size to local cell-surface curvature. This work reveals that actin networks may act as micrometric curvature sensors and uncovers a generic morphogenetic principle for how polarity domains define their size according to cell morphologies. PMID:26441355

  4. Actin-Based Transport Adapts Polarity Domain Size to Local Cellular Curvature.

    PubMed

    Bonazzi, Daria; Haupt, Armin; Tanimoto, Hirokazu; Delacour, Delphine; Salort, Delphine; Minc, Nicolas

    2015-10-19

    Intracellular structures and organelles such as the nucleus, the centrosome, or the mitotic spindle typically scale their size to cell size [1]. Similarly, cortical polarity domains built around the active form of conserved Rho-GTPases, such as Cdc42p, exhibit widths that may range over two orders of magnitudes in cells with different sizes and shapes [2-6]. The establishment of such domains typically involves positive feedback loops based on reaction-diffusion and/or actin-mediated vesicle transport [3, 7, 8]. How these elements may adapt polarity domain size to cellular geometry is not known. Here, by tracking the width of successive oscillating Cdc42-GTP domains in fission yeast spores [9], we find that domain width scales with local cell-surface radii of curvature over an 8-fold range, independently of absolute cell volume, surface, or Cdc42-GTP concentration. This local scaling requires formin-nucleated cortical actin cables and the fusion of secretory vesicles transported along these cables with the membrane. These data suggest that reaction-diffusion may set a minimal domain size and that secretory vesicle transport along actin cables may dilute and extend polarity domains to adapt their size to local cell-surface curvature. This work reveals that actin networks may act as micrometric curvature sensors and uncovers a generic morphogenetic principle for how polarity domains define their size according to cell morphologies.

  5. 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

  6. Actin-binding proteins: the long road to understanding the dynamic landscape of cellular actin networks.

    PubMed

    Lappalainen, Pekka

    2016-08-15

    The actin cytoskeleton supports a vast number of cellular processes in nonmuscle cells. It is well established that the organization and dynamics of the actin cytoskeleton are controlled by a large array of actin-binding proteins. However, it was only 40 years ago that the first nonmuscle actin-binding protein, filamin, was identified and characterized. Filamin was shown to bind and cross-link actin filaments into higher-order structures and contribute to phagocytosis in macrophages. Subsequently many other nonmuscle actin-binding proteins were identified and characterized. These proteins regulate almost all steps of the actin filament assembly and disassembly cycles, as well as the arrangement of actin filaments into diverse three-dimensional structures. Although the individual biochemical activities of most actin-regulatory proteins are relatively well understood, knowledge of how these proteins function together in a common cytoplasm to control actin dynamics and architecture is only beginning to emerge. Furthermore, understanding how signaling pathways and mechanical cues control the activities of various actin-binding proteins in different cellular, developmental, and pathological processes will keep researchers busy for decades. PMID:27528696

  7. Xenopus egg cytoplasm with intact actin.

    PubMed

    Field, Christine M; Nguyen, Phuong A; Ishihara, Keisuke; Groen, Aaron C; Mitchison, Timothy J

    2014-01-01

    We report optimized methods for preparing Xenopus egg extracts without cytochalasin D, that we term "actin-intact egg extract." These are undiluted egg cytoplasm that contains abundant organelles, and glycogen which supplies energy, and represents the least perturbed cell-free cytoplasm preparation we know of. We used this system to probe cell cycle regulation of actin and myosin-II dynamics (Field et al., 2011), and to reconstitute the large, interphase asters that organize early Xenopus embryos (Mitchison et al., 2012; Wühr, Tan, Parker, Detrich, & Mitchison, 2010). Actin-intact Xenopus egg extracts are useful for analysis of actin dynamics, and interaction of actin with other cytoplasmic systems, in a cell-free system that closely mimics egg physiology, and more generally for probing the biochemistry and biophysics of the egg, zygote, and early embryo. Detailed protocols are provided along with assays used to check cell cycle state and tips for handling and storing undiluted egg extracts.

  8. Arp2/3 complex-deficient mouse fibroblasts are viable and have normal leading-edge actin structure and function

    PubMed Central

    Di Nardo, Alessia; Cicchetti, Gregor; Falet, Hervé; Hartwig, John H.; Stossel, Thomas P.; Kwiatkowski, David J.

    2005-01-01

    RNA interference silencing of up to 90% of Arp3 protein expression, a major subunit of the Arp2/3 complex, proportionately decreases the intracellular motility of Listeria monocytogenes and actin nucleation activity ascribable to the Arp2/3 complex in mouse embryonic fibroblasts. However, the Arp2/3-deficient cells exhibit unimpaired lamellipodial actin network structure, translational locomotion, spreading, actin assembly, and ruffling responses. In addition, Arp3-silenced cells expressing neural Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein-derived peptides that inhibit Arp2/3 complex function in wild-type cells retained normal PDGF-induced ruffling. The Arp2/3 complex can be dispensable for leading-edge actin remodeling. PMID:16254049

  9. Ice Nucleation in Deep Convection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jensen, Eric; Ackerman, Andrew; Stevens, David; Gore, Warren J. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    The processes controlling production of ice crystals in deep, rapidly ascending convective columns are poorly understood due to the difficulties involved with either modeling or in situ sampling of these violent clouds. A large number of ice crystals are no doubt generated when droplets freeze at about -40 C. However, at higher levels, these crystals are likely depleted due to precipitation and detrainment. As the ice surface area decreases, the relative humidity can increase well above ice saturation, resulting in bursts of ice nucleation. We will present simulations of these processes using a large-eddy simulation model with detailed microphysics. Size bins are included for aerosols, liquid droplets, ice crystals, and mixed-phase (ice/liquid) hydrometers. Microphysical processes simulated include droplet activation, freezing, melting, homogeneous freezing of sulfate aerosols, and heterogeneous ice nucleation. We are focusing on the importance of ice nucleation events in the upper part of the cloud at temperatures below -40 C. We will show that the ultimate evolution of the cloud in this region (and the anvil produced by the convection) is sensitive to these ice nucleation events, and hence to the composition of upper tropospheric aerosols that get entrained into the convective column.

  10. Foam nucleation system for fluoropolymers

    SciTech Connect

    Buckmaster, M.D.; Randa, S.K.

    1988-08-16

    A foamable composition is described comprising a melt-processible fluoropolymer containing a nucleating amount of boron nitride and a synergistic amount of at least one inorganic salt that is thermally stable at the fluoropolymer extrusion temperature, and consists of a metal cation and a polyatomic anion.

  11. The Cdc42 Guanine Nucleotide Exchange Factor FGD6 Coordinates Cell Polarity and Endosomal Membrane Recycling in Osteoclasts*

    PubMed Central

    Steenblock, Charlotte; Heckel, Tobias; Czupalla, Cornelia; Espírito Santo, Ana Isabel; Niehage, Christian; Sztacho, Martin; Hoflack, Bernard

    2014-01-01

    The initial step of bone digestion is the adhesion of osteoclasts onto bone surfaces and the assembly of podosomal belts that segregate the bone-facing ruffled membrane from other membrane domains. During bone digestion, membrane components of the ruffled border also need to be recycled after macropinocytosis of digested bone materials. How osteoclast polarity and membrane recycling are coordinated remains unknown. Here, we show that the Cdc42-guanine nucleotide exchange factor FGD6 coordinates these events through its Src-dependent interaction with different actin-based protein networks. At the plasma membrane, FGD6 couples cell adhesion and actin dynamics by regulating podosome formation through the assembly of complexes comprising the Cdc42-interactor IQGAP1, the Rho GTPase-activating protein ARHGAP10, and the integrin interactors Talin-1/2 or Filamin A. On endosomes and transcytotic vesicles, FGD6 regulates retromer-dependent membrane recycling through its interaction with the actin nucleation-promoting factor WASH. These results provide a mechanism by which a single Cdc42-exchange factor controlling different actin-based processes coordinates cell adhesion, cell polarity, and membrane recycling during bone degradation. PMID:24821726

  12. The Cdc42 guanine nucleotide exchange factor FGD6 coordinates cell polarity and endosomal membrane recycling in osteoclasts.

    PubMed

    Steenblock, Charlotte; Heckel, Tobias; Czupalla, Cornelia; Espírito Santo, Ana Isabel; Niehage, Christian; Sztacho, Martin; Hoflack, Bernard

    2014-06-27

    The initial step of bone digestion is the adhesion of osteoclasts onto bone surfaces and the assembly of podosomal belts that segregate the bone-facing ruffled membrane from other membrane domains. During bone digestion, membrane components of the ruffled border also need to be recycled after macropinocytosis of digested bone materials. How osteoclast polarity and membrane recycling are coordinated remains unknown. Here, we show that the Cdc42-guanine nucleotide exchange factor FGD6 coordinates these events through its Src-dependent interaction with different actin-based protein networks. At the plasma membrane, FGD6 couples cell adhesion and actin dynamics by regulating podosome formation through the assembly of complexes comprising the Cdc42-interactor IQGAP1, the Rho GTPase-activating protein ARHGAP10, and the integrin interactors Talin-1/2 or Filamin A. On endosomes and transcytotic vesicles, FGD6 regulates retromer-dependent membrane recycling through its interaction with the actin nucleation-promoting factor WASH. These results provide a mechanism by which a single Cdc42-exchange factor controlling different actin-based processes coordinates cell adhesion, cell polarity, and membrane recycling during bone degradation. PMID:24821726

  13. Crystal structure of an archaeal actin homolog.

    PubMed

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

    2006-04-21

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

  14. Probing actin incorporation into myofibrils using Asp11 and His73 actin mutants.

    PubMed

    Xia, D; Peng, B; Sesok, D A; Peng, I

    1993-01-01

    We used a cell free system Bouché et al.: J. Cell Biol. 107:587-596, 1988] to study the incorporation of actin into myofibrils. We used alpha-skeletal muscle actin and actins with substitutions of either His73 [Solomon and Rubenstein: J. Biol.Chem. 262:11382, 1987], or Asp11 [Solomon et al.: J. Biol. Chem. 263:19662, 1988]. Actins were translated in reticulocyte lysate and incubated with myofibrils. The incorporated wild type actin could be cross-linked into dimers using N,N'-1,4-phenylenebismaleimide (PBM), indicating that the incorporated actin is actually inserted into the thin filaments of the myofibril. The His73 mutants incorporated to the same extent as wild type actin and was also cross-linked with PBM. Although some of the Asp11 mutants co-assembled with carrier actin, only 1-3% of the Asp11 mutant actins incorporated after 2 min and did not increase after 2 hr. Roughly 17% of wild type actin incorporated after 2 min and 31% after 2 hr. ATP increased the release of wild type actin from myofibrils, but did not increase the release of Asp11 mutants. We suggest that (1) the incorporation of wild type and His73 mutant actins was due to a physiological process whereas association of Asp11 mutants with myofibrils was non-specific, (2) the incorporation of wild type actin involved a rapid initial phase, followed by a slower phase, and (3) since some of the Asp11 mutants can co-assemble with wild type actin, the ability to self-assemble was not sufficient for incorporation into myofibrils. Thus, incorporation probably includes interaction between actin and a thin filament associated protein. We also showed that incorporation occurred at actin concentrations which would cause disassembly of F-actin. Since the myofibrils did not show large scale disassembly but incorporated actin, filament stability and monomer incorporation are likely to be mediated by actin associated proteins of the myofibril. PMID:8287497

  15. A Secreted Ankyrin-Repeat Protein from Clinical Stenotrophomonas maltophilia Isolates Disrupts Actin Cytoskeletal Structure.

    PubMed

    MacDonald, Logan C; O'Keefe, Sean; Parnes, Mei-Fan; MacDonald, Hanlon; Stretz, Lindsey; Templer, Suzanne J; Wong, Emily L; Berger, Bryan W

    2016-01-01

    Stenotrophomonas maltophilia is an emerging, multidrug-resistant pathogen of increasing importance for the immunocompromised, including cystic fibrosis patients. Despite its significance as an emerging pathogen, relatively little is known regarding the specific factors and mechanisms that contribute to its pathogenicity. We identify and characterize a putative ankyrin-repeat protein (Smlt3054) unique to clinical S. maltophilia isolates that binds F-actin in vitro and co-localizes with actin in transfected HEK293a cells. Smlt3054 is endogenously expressed and secreted from clinical S. maltophilia isolates, but not an environmental isolate (R551-3). The in vitro binding of Smlt3054 to F-actin resulted in a thickening of the filaments as observed by TEM. Ectopic expression of Smlt3054-GFP exhibits strong co-localization with F-actin, with distinct, retrograde F-actin waves specifically associated with Smlt3054 in individual cells as well as formation of dense, internal inclusions at the expense of retrograde F-actin waves. Collectively, our results point to an interaction between Smlt3054 and F-actin. Furthermore, as a potentially secreted protein unique to clinical S. maltophilia isolates, Smlt3054 may serve as a starting point for understanding the mechanisms by which S. maltophilia has become an emergent pathogen. PMID:27622948

  16. AIP1 acts with cofilin to control actin dynamics during epithelial morphogenesis.

    PubMed

    Chu, Dandan; Pan, Hanshuang; Wan, Ping; Wu, Jing; Luo, Jun; Zhu, Hong; Chen, Jiong

    2012-10-01

    During epithelial morphogenesis, cells not only maintain tight adhesion for epithelial integrity but also allow dynamic intercellular movement to take place within cell sheets. How these seemingly opposing processes are coordinated is not well understood. Here, we report that the actin disassembly factors AIP1 and cofilin are required for remodeling of adherens junctions (AJs) during ommatidial precluster formation in Drosophila eye epithelium, a highly stereotyped cell rearrangement process which we describe in detail in our live imaging study. AIP1 is enriched together with F-actin in the apical region of preclusters, whereas cofilin displays a diffuse and uniform localization pattern. Cofilin overexpression completely rescues AJ remodeling defects caused by AIP1 loss of function, and cofilin physically interacts with AIP1. Pharmacological reduction of actin turnover results in similar AJ remodeling defects and decreased turnover of E-cadherin, which also results from AIP1 deficiency, whereas an F-actin-destabilizing drug affects AJ maintenance and epithelial integrity. Together with other data on actin polymerization, our results suggest that AIP1 enhances cofilin-mediated actin disassembly in the apical region of precluster cells to promote remodeling of AJs and thus intercellular movement, but also that robust actin polymerization promotes AJ general adhesion and integrity during the remodeling process.

  17. Ice Nucleation Properties of Oxidized Carbon Nanomaterials.

    PubMed

    Whale, Thomas F; Rosillo-Lopez, Martin; Murray, Benjamin J; Salzmann, Christoph G

    2015-08-01

    Heterogeneous ice nucleation is an important process in many fields, particularly atmospheric science, but is still poorly understood. All known inorganic ice nucleating particles are relatively large in size and tend to be hydrophilic. Hence it is not obvious that carbon nanomaterials should nucleate ice. However, in this paper we show that four different readily water-dispersible carbon nanomaterials are capable of nucleating ice. The tested materials were carboxylated graphene nanoflakes, graphene oxide, oxidized single walled carbon nanotubes and oxidized multiwalled carbon nanotubes. The carboxylated graphene nanoflakes have a diameter of ∼30 nm and are among the smallest entities observed so far to nucleate ice. Overall, carbon nanotubes were found to nucleate ice more efficiently than flat graphene species, and less oxidized materials nucleated ice more efficiently than more oxidized species. These well-defined carbon nanomaterials may pave the way to bridging the gap between experimental and computational studies of ice nucleation. PMID:26267196

  18. Test of classical nucleation theory and mean first-passage time formalism on crystallization in the Lennard-Jones liquid

    SciTech Connect

    Lundrigan, Sarah E. M.; Saika-Voivod, Ivan

    2009-09-14

    We perform molecular dynamics (MD) and Monte Carlo computer simulations to test the ability of the recently developed formalism of mean first-passage time (MFPT) [J. Wedekind, R. Strey, and D. Reguera, J. Chem. Phys. 126, 134103 (2007); J. Wedekind and D. Reguera, J. Phys. Chem. B 112, 11060 (2008)] to characterize crystal nucleation in the Lennard-Jones liquid. We find that the nucleation rate, critical embryo size, Zeldovich factor, attachment rate, and the nucleation barrier profile obtained from MFPT all compare very well to the same quantities calculated using other methods. Furthermore, we find that the nucleation rate obtained directly through MD closely matches the prediction of classical nucleation theory.

  19. Barley MLO Modulates Actin-Dependent and Actin-Independent Antifungal Defense Pathways at the Cell Periphery1[W][OA

    PubMed Central

    Miklis, Marco; Consonni, Chiara; Bhat, Riyaz A.; Lipka, Volker; Schulze-Lefert, Paul; Panstruga, Ralph

    2007-01-01

    Cell polarization is a crucial process during plant development, as well as in plant-microbe interactions, and is frequently associated with extensive cytoskeletal rearrangements. In interactions of plants with inappropriate fungal pathogens (so-called non-host interactions), the actin cytoskeleton is thought to contribute to the establishment of effective barriers at the cell periphery against fungal ingress. Here, we impeded actin cytoskeleton function in various types of disease resistance using pharmacological inhibitors and genetic interference via ectopic expression of an actin-depolymerizing factor-encoding gene, ADF. We demonstrate that barley (Hordeum vulgare) epidermal cells require actin cytoskeleton function for basal defense to the appropriate powdery mildew pathogen Blumeria graminis f. sp. hordei and for mlo-mediated resistance at the cell wall, but not for several tested race-specific immune responses. Analysis of non-host resistance to two tested inappropriate powdery mildews, Erysiphe pisi and B. graminis f. sp. tritici, revealed the existence of actin-dependent and actin-independent resistance pathways acting at the cell periphery. These pathways act synergistically and appear to be under negative control by the plasma membrane-resident MLO protein. PMID:17449647

  20. Interaction between MyRIP and the actin cytoskeleton regulates Weibel–Palade body trafficking and exocytosis

    PubMed Central

    Conte, Ianina L.; Hellen, Nicola; Bierings, Ruben; Mashanov, Gregory I.; Manneville, Jean-Baptiste; Kiskin, Nikolai I.; Hannah, Matthew J.; Molloy, Justin E.; Carter, Tom

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Weibel–Palade body (WPB)–actin interactions are essential for the trafficking and secretion of von Willebrand factor; however, the molecular basis for this interaction remains poorly defined. Myosin Va (MyoVa or MYO5A) is recruited to WPBs by a Rab27A–MyRIP complex and is thought to be the prime mediator of actin binding, but direct MyRIP–actin interactions can also occur. To evaluate the specific contribution of MyRIP–actin and MyRIP–MyoVa binding in WPB trafficking and Ca2+-driven exocytosis, we used EGFP–MyRIP point mutants with disrupted MyoVa and/or actin binding and high-speed live-cell fluorescence microscopy. We now show that the ability of MyRIP to restrict WPB movement depends upon its actin-binding rather than its MyoVa-binding properties. We also show that, although the role of MyRIP in Ca2+-driven exocytosis requires both MyoVa- and actin-binding potential, it is the latter that plays a dominant role. In view of these results and together with the analysis of actin disruption or stabilisation experiments, we propose that the role of MyRIP in regulating WPB trafficking and exocytosis is mediated largely through its interaction with actin rather than with MyoVa. PMID:26675235

  1. Analysis of actinic flux profiles measured from an ozone sonde balloon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, P.; Allaart, M.; Knap, W. H.; Stammes, P.

    2014-12-01

    A green light sensor has been developed at KNMI to measure actinic flux profiles using an ozone sonde balloon. In total, 63 launches with ascending and descending profiles were performed between 2006 and 2010. The measured uncalibrated actinic flux profiles are analyzed using the Doubling Adding KNMI (DAK) radiative transfer model. Values of the cloud optical thickness (COT) along the flight track were taken from the Spinning Enhanced Visible and Infrared Imager (SEVIRI) Cloud Physical Properties (CPP) product. The impact of clouds on the actinic flux profile is evaluated on the basis of the cloud modification factor (CMF) at the cloud top and cloud base, which is the ratio between the actinic fluxes for cloudy and clear-sky scenes. The impact of clouds on the actinic flux is clearly detected: the largest enhancement occurs at the cloud top due to multiple scattering. The actinic flux decreases almost linearly from cloud top to cloud base. Above the cloud top the actinic flux also increases compared to clear-sky scenes. We find that clouds can increase the actinic flux to 2.3 times of the clear-sky value at cloud top and decrease it to about 0.05 at cloud base. The relationship between CMF and COT agrees well with DAK simulations, except for a few outliers. Good agreement is found between the DAK simulated actinic flux profiles and the observations for single layer clouds in fully overcast scenes. The instrument is suitable for operational balloon measurements because of its simplicity and low cost. It is worth to further develop the instrument and launch it together with atmospheric chemistry composition sensors.

  2. Reversible stress softening of actin networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2007-01-01

    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 changes. 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 extension. 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.

  3. Cytoskeletal social networking in the growth cone: How +TIPs mediate microtubule-actin cross-linking to drive axon outgrowth and guidance.

    PubMed

    Cammarata, Garrett M; Bearce, Elizabeth A; Lowery, Laura Anne

    2016-09-01

    The growth cone is a unique structure capable of guiding axons to their proper destinations. Within the growth cone, extracellular guidance cues are interpreted and then transduced into physical changes in the actin filament (F-actin) and microtubule cytoskeletons, providing direction and movement. While both cytoskeletal networks individually possess important growth cone-specific functions, recent data over the past several years point towards a more cooperative role between the two systems. Facilitating this interaction between F-actin and microtubules, microtubule plus-end tracking proteins (+TIPs) have been shown to link the two cytoskeletons together. Evidence suggests that many +TIPs can couple microtubules to F-actin dynamics, supporting both microtubule advance and retraction in the growth cone periphery. In addition, growing in vitro and in vivo data support a secondary role for +TIPs in which they may participate as F-actin nucleators, thus directly influencing F-actin dynamics and organization. This review focuses on how +TIPs may link F-actin and microtubules together in the growth cone, and how these interactions may influence axon guidance. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  4. Nuclear F-actin enhances the transcriptional activity of β-catenin by increasing its nuclear localization and binding to chromatin.

    PubMed

    Yamazaki, Shota; Yamamoto, Koji; de Lanerolle, Primal; Harata, Masahiko

    2016-04-01

    Actin plays multiple roles both in the cytoplasm and in the nucleus. Cytoplasmic actin, in addition to its structural role in the cytoskeleton, also contributes to the subcellular localization of transcription factors by interacting with them or their partners. The transcriptional cofactor β-catenin, which acts as an intracellular transducer of canonical Wnt signaling, indirectly associates with the cytoplasmic filamentous actin (F-actin). Recently, it has been observed that F-actin is transiently formed within the nucleus in response to serum stimulation and integrin signaling, and also during gene reprogramming. Despite these earlier observations, information about the function of nuclear F-actin is poorly defined. Here, by facilitating the accumulation of nuclear actin artificially, we demonstrate that polymerizing nuclear actin enhanced the nuclear accumulation and transcriptional function of β-catenin. Our results also show that the nuclear F-actin colocalizes with β-catenin and enhances the binding of β-catenin to the downstream target genes of the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway, including the genes for the cell cycle regulators c-myc and cyclin D, and the OCT4 gene. Nuclear F-actin itself also associated with these genes. Since Wnt/β-catenin signaling has important roles in cell differentiation and pluripotency, our observations suggest that nuclear F-actin formed during these biological processes is involved in regulating Wnt/β-catenin signaling. PMID:26900020

  5. Nuclear F-actin enhances the transcriptional activity of β-catenin by increasing its nuclear localization and binding to chromatin.

    PubMed

    Yamazaki, Shota; Yamamoto, Koji; de Lanerolle, Primal; Harata, Masahiko

    2016-04-01

    Actin plays multiple roles both in the cytoplasm and in the nucleus. Cytoplasmic actin, in addition to its structural role in the cytoskeleton, also contributes to the subcellular localization of transcription factors by interacting with them or their partners. The transcriptional cofactor β-catenin, which acts as an intracellular transducer of canonical Wnt signaling, indirectly associates with the cytoplasmic filamentous actin (F-actin). Recently, it has been observed that F-actin is transiently formed within the nucleus in response to serum stimulation and integrin signaling, and also during gene reprogramming. Despite these earlier observations, information about the function of nuclear F-actin is poorly defined. Here, by facilitating the accumulation of nuclear actin artificially, we demonstrate that polymerizing nuclear actin enhanced the nuclear accumulation and transcriptional function of β-catenin. Our results also show that the nuclear F-actin colocalizes with β-catenin and enhances the binding of β-catenin to the downstream target genes of the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway, including the genes for the cell cycle regulators c-myc and cyclin D, and the OCT4 gene. Nuclear F-actin itself also associated with these genes. Since Wnt/β-catenin signaling has important roles in cell differentiation and pluripotency, our observations suggest that nuclear F-actin formed during these biological processes is involved in regulating Wnt/β-catenin signaling.

  6. The actin-severing activity of cofilin is exerted by the interplay of three distinct sites on cofilin and essential for cell viability.

    PubMed Central

    Moriyama, Kenji; Yahara, Ichiro

    2002-01-01

    Cofilin/actin-depolymerizing factor is an essential and conserved modulator of actin dynamics. Cofilin binds to actin in either monomeric or filamentous form, severs and depolymerizes actin filaments, and speeds up their treadmilling. A high turnover rate of F-actin in actin-based motility seems driven largely by cofilin-mediated acceleration of directional subunit release, but little by fragmentation of the filaments. On the other hand, the filament-severing function of cofilin seems relevant for the healthy growth of cells. In this study, we have characterized three mutants of porcine cofilin to elucidate the molecular mechanism that underlies the filament-severing activity of cofilin. The first mutant could neither associate with actin filaments nor sever them, whereas it effectively accelerated their treadmilling and directional subunit release. The second mutant bound to actin filaments, but failed to sever them and to interfere with phalloidin binding to the filament. The third mutant could associate with actin filaments and sever them, although with a very reduced efficacy. Of these mutant proteins, only the last one was able to rescue Deltacof1 yeast cells and to induce thick actin bundles in mammalian cells upon overexpression. Therefore, the actin-severing activity of cofilin is an essential element in its vital function and suggested to be exerted by co-operation of at least three distinct sites of cofilin. PMID:12113256

  7. Thermodynamics and kinetics of homogeneous crystal nucleation studied by computer simulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huitema, H. E. A.; van der Eerden, J. P.; Janssen, J. J. M.; Human, H.

    2000-12-01

    Crystal nucleation is numerically simulated in the Lennard-Jones model. By isobaric cooling and isothermal compression of a liquid, we succeeded in fully crystallizing a large number of systems containing up to 10 000 atoms. We assessed thermodynamic data (density, enthalpy, and chemical potential) of the crystalline as well as the (metastable) liquid phase for considerably larger ranges of pressure and temperature than published so far. Using these data, we were able to confront our simulation results with classical nucleation theories without the need to recognize a critical cluster during the simulations. One of the findings is that in our experiments the steady-state nucleation regime was almost never reached. Careful analysis resulted in an estimate of the time-dependent effects in the nucleation rate, during which the nucleation rate grows from zero to its steady-state value. This way we were able to determine the values of the steady-state nucleation rate, which are consistent with independent estimates for both the preexponential factor and the nucleation barrier. In most previous experimental and simulation studies by other research groups, preexponential factors have been found that are orders of magnitude too large or too small. Our investigations show that an important factor in this discrepancy could be due to an underestimation of time-dependent nucleation effects.

  8. Binding of actin to lens alpha crystallins

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gopalakrishnan, S.; Takemoto, L.; Spooner, B. S. (Principal Investigator)

    1992-01-01

    Actin has been coupled to a cyanogen bromide-activated Sepharose 4B column, then tested for binding to alpha, beta, and gamma crystallin preparations from the bovine lens. Alpha, but not beta or gamma, crystallins bound to the actin affinity column in a time dependent and saturable manner. Subfractionation of the alpha crystallin preparation into the alpha-A and alpha-B species, followed by incubation with the affinity column, demonstrated that both species bound approximately the same. Together, these studies demonstrate a specific and saturable binding of lens alpha-A and alpha-B with actin.

  9. Dynamic reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton

    PubMed Central

    Gressin, Laurène; Théry, Manuel; Blanchoin, Laurent

    2015-01-01

    Cellular processes, including morphogenesis, polarization, and motility, rely on a variety of actin-based structures. Although the biochemical composition and filament organization of these structures are different, they often emerge from a common origin. This is possible because the actin structures are highly dynamic. Indeed, they assemble, grow, and disassemble in a time scale of a second to a minute. Therefore, the reorganization of a given actin structure can promote the formation of another. Here, we discuss such transitions and illustrate them with computer simulations. PMID:26989473

  10. Effects of system pressure and heat flux on bubble nucleation and growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qiu, Chao; Zhang, Huichen

    2015-09-01

    Characteristics of bubble nucleation and growth are critical for its application. It is affected by several factors including viscosity, surface tension and temperature. However, the effect of pressure on bubble nucleation and growth has been underreported, although it processes significant effect on above characteristics. In this work, a micro copper electrode is etched on a slab covered with copper to produce bubble on the surface by current input. The nucleation time of bubble is measured under different heat flux and system pressures. The nucleation and growth processes are recorded with a high speed camera in order to discuss the effects of heat flux and system pressure on bubble characteristics. The experiment results indicate that the micro electrode with higher heat flux produces more thermal energy, which makes the time of bubble nucleation shorter and the speed of bubble growth faster. Higher system pressure causes the increase of the critical nucleation temperature and also baffles the bubble nucleation and growth. Bubble growth includes the stages of rapid growth and dynamic equilibrium, with the speed being from fast to slow. In the former part of rapid growth, heat flux plays a dominant role in bubble growth. While the effect of system pressure on bubble growth becomes significant in the latter part of rapid growth. Both the nucleation time and bubble growth agree well with the theoretical analysis. The obtained results help to accurately control bubble nucleation and growth required in different application.

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

    PubMed

    Suetsugu, Noriyuki; Wada, Masamitsu

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Suetsugu, Noriyuki; Wada, Masamitsu

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Suetsugu, Noriyuki; Wada, Masamitsu

    2016-01-01

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

  14. Mena–GRASP65 interaction couples actin polymerization to Golgi ribbon linking

    PubMed Central

    Tang, Danming; Zhang, Xiaoyan; Huang, Shijiao; Yuan, Hebao; Li, Jie; Wang, Yanzhuang

    2016-01-01

    In mammalian cells, the Golgi reassembly stacking protein 65 (GRASP65) has been implicated in both Golgi stacking and ribbon linking by forming trans-oligomers through the N-terminal GRASP domain. Because the GRASP domain is globular and relatively small, but the gaps between stacks are large and heterogeneous, it remains puzzling how GRASP65 physically links Golgi stacks into a ribbon. To explore the possibility that other proteins may help GRASP65 in ribbon linking, we used biochemical methods and identified the actin elongation factor Mena as a novel GRASP65-binding protein. Mena is recruited onto the Golgi membranes through interaction with GRASP65. Depleting Mena or disrupting actin polymerization resulted in Golgi fragmentation. In cells, Mena and actin were required for Golgi ribbon formation after nocodazole washout; in vitro, Mena and microfilaments enhanced GRASP65 oligomerization and Golgi membrane fusion. Thus Mena interacts with GRASP65 to promote local actin polymerization, which facilitates Golgi ribbon linking. PMID:26538023

  15. A simple ice nucleation spectrometer.

    PubMed

    Wharton, David A; Mutch, Jodi S; Wilson, Peter W; Marshall, Craig J; Lim, Miang

    2004-01-01

    The construction of a simple ice nucleation spectrometer is described. It uses 10 microliter droplets loaded into glass capillary tubes which are then inserted into an aluminium holder. Each holder takes six capillary tubes surrounding a central thermocouple. Four holders are placed into a cooling block, cooled by fluid from a programmable refrigerated circulator, and the thermocouples interfaced to a computer to record temperatures. Freezing of each sample is detected by an exotherm on the temperature recording, with 24 samples recorded per run. The spectrometer was tested using deionized water, an extract from a New Zealand alpine cockroach and an extract of lawn grass. The cockroach extract is estimated to contain about 10(3) more nucleators, active at -5 degrees C, than the grass extract. PMID:15618985

  16. Ice nucleation activity of polysaccharides

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bichler, Magdalena; Felgitsch, Laura; Haeusler, Thomas; Seidl-Seiboth, Verena; Grothe, Hinrich

    2015-04-01

    Heterogeneous ice nucleation is an important process in the atmosphere. It shows direct impact on our climate by triggering ice cloud formation and therefore it has much influence on the radiation balance of our planet (Lohmann et al. 2002; Mishchenko et al. 1996). The process itself is not completely understood so far and many questions remain open. Different substances have been found to exhibit ice nucleation activity (INA). Due to their vast differences in chemistry and morphology it is difficult to predict what substance will make good ice nuclei and which will not. Hence simple model substances must be found and be tested regarding INA. Our work aims at gaining to a deeper understanding of heterogeneous ice nucleation. We intend to find some reference standards with defined chemistry, which may explain the mechanisms of heterogeneous ice nucleation. A particular focus lies on biological carbohydrates in regards to their INA. Biological carbohydrates are widely distributed in all kingdoms of life. Mostly they are specific for certain organisms and have well defined purposes, e.g. structural polysaccharides like chitin (in fungi and insects) and pectin (in plants), which has also water-binding properties. Since they are widely distributed throughout our biosphere and mostly safe to use for nutrition purposes, they are well studied and easily accessible, rendering them ideal candidates as proxies. In our experiments we examined various carbohydrates, like the already mentioned chitin and pectin, as well as their chemical modifications. Lohmann U.; A Glaciation Indirect Aerosol Effect Caused by Soot Aerosols; J. Geoph. Res.; Vol. 24 No.4; pp 11-1 - 11-4; 2002 Mishchenko M.I., Rossow W.B., Macke A., Lacis A. A.; Sensitivity of Cirrus Cloud Albedo, Bidirectional Reflectance and Optical Thickness Retrieval Accuracy to Ice Particle Shape, J. Geoph. Res.; Vol. 101, No D12; pp. 16,973 - 16,985; 1996

  17. Actin foci facilitate activation of the phospholipase C-γ in primary T lymphocytes via the WASP pathway

    PubMed Central

    Kumari, Sudha; Depoil, David; Martinelli, Roberta; Judokusumo, Edward; Carmona, Guillaume; Gertler, Frank B; Kam, Lance C; Carman, Christopher V; Burkhardt, Janis K; Irvine, Darrell J; Dustin, Michael L

    2015-01-01

    Wiscott Aldrich Syndrome protein (WASP) deficiency results in defects in calcium ion signaling, cytoskeletal regulation, gene transcription and overall T cell activation. The activation of WASP constitutes a key pathway for actin filament nucleation. Yet, when WASP function is eliminated there is negligible effect on actin polymerization at the immunological synapse, leading to gaps in our understanding of the events connecting WASP and calcium ion signaling. Here, we identify a fraction of total synaptic F-actin selectively generated by WASP in the form of distinct F-actin ‘foci’. These foci are polymerized de novo as a result of the T cell receptor (TCR) proximal tyrosine kinase cascade, and facilitate distal signaling events including PLCγ1 activation and subsequent cytoplasmic calcium ion elevation. We conclude that WASP generates a dynamic F-actin architecture in the context of the immunological synapse, which then amplifies the downstream signals required for an optimal immune response. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.04953.001 PMID:25758716

  18. The F-BAR protein Hof1 tunes formin activity to sculpt actin cables during polarized growth

    PubMed Central

    Graziano, Brian R.; Yu, Hoi-Ying E.; Alioto, Salvatore L.; Eskin, Julian A.; Ydenberg, Casey A.; Waterman, David P.; Garabedian, Mikael; Goode, Bruce L.

    2014-01-01

    Asymmetric cell growth and division rely on polarized actin cytoskeleton remodeling events, the regulation of which is poorly understood. In budding yeast, formins stimulate the assembly of an organized network of actin cables that direct polarized secretion. Here we show that the Fer/Cip4 homology–Bin amphiphysin Rvs protein Hof1, which has known roles in cytokinesis, also functions during polarized growth by directly controlling the activities of the formin Bnr1. A mutant lacking the C-terminal half of Hof1 displays misoriented and architecturally altered cables, along with impaired secretory vesicle traffic. In vitro, Hof1 inhibits the actin nucleation and elongation activities of Bnr1 without displacing the formin from filament ends. These effects depend on the Src homology 3 domain of Hof1, the formin homology 1 (FH1) domain of Bnr1, and Hof1 dimerization, suggesting a mechanism by which Hof1 “restrains” the otherwise flexible FH1-FH2 apparatus. In vivo, loss of inhibition does not alter actin levels in cables but, instead, cable shape and functionality. Thus Hof1 tunes formins to sculpt the actin cable network. PMID:24719456

  19. Actin filament turnover drives leading edge growth during myelin sheath formation in the central nervous system

    PubMed Central

    Schmitt, Sebastian; Snaidero, Nicolas; Mitkovski, Mišo; Velte, Caroline; Brückner, Bastian R.; Alexopoulos, Ioannis; Czopka, Tim; Jung, Sang Y.; Rhee, Jeong S.; Janshoff, Andreas; Witke, Walter; Schaap, Iwan A.T.; Lyons, David A.; Simons, Mikael

    2016-01-01

    Summary During central nervous system development, oligodendrocytes wrap their plasma membrane around axons to generate multi-lamellar myelin sheaths. To drive growth at the leading edge of myelin at the interface with the axon, mechanical forces are necessary, but the underlying mechanisms are not known. Using an interdisciplinary approach that combines morphological, genetic and biophysical analyses, we identified a key role for actin filament network turnover in myelin growth. At the onset of myelin biogenesis, F-actin is redistributed to the leading edge, where its polymerization-based forces push out non-adhesive and motile protrusions. F-actin disassembly converts protrusions into sheets by reducing surface tension and in turn inducing membrane spreading and adhesion. We identified the actin depolymerizing factor ADF/Cofilin1, which mediates high F-actin turnover rates, as essential factor in this process. We propose that F-actin turnover is the driving force in myelin wrapping by regulating repetitive cycles of leading edge protrusion and spreading. PMID:26166299

  20. Role of nucleation in nanodiamond film growth

    SciTech Connect

    Lifshitz, Y.; Lee, C.H.; Wu, Y.; Zhang, W.J.; Bello, I.; Lee, S.T.

    2006-06-12

    Nanodiamond films were deposited using different microwave plasma chemical vapor deposition schemes following several nucleation pretreatment methods. The nucleation efficiency and the films structure were investigated using scanning and transmission electron microscopy and Raman spectroscopy. C{sub 2} dimer growth (CH{sub 4} and H{sub 2} in 90% Ar) cannot nucleate diamond and works only on existing diamond surfaces. The methyl radical process (up to 20% CH{sub 4} in H{sub 2}) allows some nucleation probability on appropriate substrates. Prolonged bias enhanced nucleation initiates both diamond nucleation and growth. C{sub 2} dimer growth results in pure nanodiamond free of amorphous carbon, while prolonged bias enhanced nucleation forms an amorphous carbon/nanodiamond composite.

  1. Nucleation and interfacial adsorption in ternary systems.

    PubMed

    Philippe, T

    2015-03-01

    Nucleation is studied in incompressible ternary fluids by examining the topology of the overall landscape of the energy surface. Minimum free energy paths for nucleation (MFEPs) of a single nucleus in an infinite matrix are computed with the string method in the framework of the continuum theory of nucleation for the regular solution. Properties of the critical nucleus are compared with the predictions of the classical nucleation theory. MFEPs are found to exhibit complex nucleation pathways with non-monotonic variations of compositions in the interfacial region, specifically adsorption of a component. In the symmetric regular solution, the minority component is found to segregate at the interface during nucleation with a concomitant depletion of the nucleus core, resulting in unpredicted partition of the non-selective component. Despite increasing the gradient energy, such inhomogeneity in composition is shown to lower the nucleation barrier. PMID:25747088

  2. Sigmoid kinetics of protein crystal nucleation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nanev, Christo N.; Tonchev, Vesselin D.

    2015-10-01

    A non-linear differential equation expressing the new phase nucleation rate in the different steps of the process (non-stationary and stationary nucleation and in the plateau region) is derived from basic principles of the nucleation theory. It is shown that one and the same sigmoid (logistic) function describes both nucleation scenarios: the one according to the classical theory, and the other according to the modern two-stage mechanism of protein crystal formation. Comparison to experimental data on both insulin crystal nucleation kinetics and on bovine β-lactoglobulin crystallization indicates a good agreement with the sigmoidal prediction. Experimental data for electrochemical nucleation and glass crystallization obey the same sigmoid time dependence, and suggest universality of this nucleation kinetics law.

  3. Diamond nucleation under bias conditions

    SciTech Connect

    Stoeckel, R.; Stammler, M.; Janischowsky, K.; Ley, L.; Albrecht, M.; Strunk, H.P.

    1998-01-01

    The so-called bias pretreatment allows the growth of heteroepitaxial diamond films by plasma chemical vapor deposition on silicon (100) surfaces. We present plan-view and cross-sectional transmission electron micrographs of the substrate surface at different phases of the bias pretreatment. These observations are augmented by measurements of the etch rates of Si, SiC, and different carbon modifications under plasma conditions and the size distribution of oriented diamond crystals grown after bias pretreatment. Based on these results a new model for diamond nucleation under bias conditions is proposed. First, a closed layer of nearly epitaxially oriented cubic SiC with a thickness of about 10 nm is formed. Subplantation of carbon into this SiC layer causes a supersaturation with carbon and results in the subcutaneous formation of epitaxially oriented nucleation centers in the SiC layer. Etching of the SiC during the bias pretreatment as well as during diamond growth brings these nucleation centers to the sample surface and causes the growth of diamonds epitaxially oriented on the Si/SiC substrate. {copyright} {ital 1998 American Institute of Physics.}

  4. Correlation between polymerizability and conformation in scallop beta-like actin and rabbit skeletal muscle alpha-actin.

    PubMed

    Khaitlina, S; Antropova, O; Kuznetsova, I; Turoverov, K; Collins, J H

    1999-08-01

    In order to investigate the structural basis for functional differences among actin isoforms, we have compared the polymerization properties and conformations of scallop adductor muscle beta-like actin and rabbit skeletal muscle alpha-actin. Polymerization of scallop Ca(2+)-actin was slower than that of skeletal muscle Ca(2+)-actin. Cleavage of the actin polypeptide chain between Gly-42 and Val-43 with Escherichia coli protease ECP 32 impaired the polymerization of scallop Mg(2+)-actin to a greater extent than skeletal muscle Mg(2+)-actin. When monomeric scallop and skeletal muscle Ca(2+)-actins were subjected to limited proteolysis with trypsin, subtilisin, or ECP 32, no differences in the conformation of actin subdomain 2 were detected. At the same time, local differences in the conformations of scallop and skeletal muscle actin subdomains 1 were revealed as intrinsic fluorescence differences. Replacement of tightly bound Ca(2+) with Mg(2+) resulted in more extensive proteolysis of segment 61-69 of scallop actin than in the case of skeletal muscle actin. Furthermore, segment 61-69 was more accessible to proteolysis with subtilisin in polymerized scallop Ca(2+)-actin than in polymerized skeletal muscle Ca(2+)-actin, indicating that, in the polymeric form, the nucleotide-containing cleft is in a more open conformation in beta-like scallop actin than in skeletal muscle alpha-actin. We suggest that this difference between scallop and skeletal muscle actins is due to a less efficient shift of scallop actin subdomain 2 to the position it has in the polymer. The possible consequences of amino acid substitutions in actin subdomain 1 in the allosteric regulation of the actin cleft, and hence in the different stabilities of polymers formed by different actins, are discussed. PMID:10415117

  5. In vivo dynamics of the F-actin-binding protein neurabin-II.

    PubMed Central

    Stephens, D J; Banting, G

    2000-01-01

    Neurabin-II (spinophilin) is a ubiquitously expressed F-actin-binding protein containing an N-terminal actin-binding domain, a PDZ (PSD95/discs large/ZO-1) domain and a C-terminal domain predicted to form a coiled-coil structure. We have stably expressed a green fluorescent protein (GFP)-tagged version of neurabin-II in PC12 cells, and characterized the in vivo dynamics of this actin-binding protein using confocal fluorescence microscopy. We show that GFP-neurabin-II localizes to actin filaments, especially at cortical sites and areas underlying sites of active membrane remodelling. GFP-neurabin-II labels only a subset of F-actin within these cells, as indicated by rhodamine-phalloidin staining. Both actin filaments and small, highly motile structures within the cell body are seen. Photobleaching experiments show that GFP-neurabin-II also exhibits highly dynamic behaviour when bound to actin filaments. Latrunculin B treatment results in rapid relocalization of GFP-neurabin-II to the cytosol, whereas cytochalasin D treatment causes the collapse of GFP-neurabin-II fluorescence to intensely fluorescent foci of F-actin within the cell body. This collapse is reversed on cytochalasin D removal, recovery from which is greatly accelerated by stimulation of cells with epidermal growth factor (EGF). Furthermore, we show that this EGF-induced relocalization of GFP-neurabin-II is dependent on the activity of the small GTPase Rac1 but not the activity of ADP-ribosylation factor 6. PMID:10620493

  6. Increased actin polymerization and stabilization interferes with neuronal function and survival in the AMPKγ mutant Loechrig.

    PubMed

    Cook, Mandy; Bolkan, Bonnie J; Kretzschmar, Doris

    2014-01-01

    loechrig (loe) mutant flies are characterized by progressive neuronal degeneration, behavioral deficits, and early death. The mutation is due to a P-element insertion in the gene for the γ-subunit of the trimeric AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) complex, whereby the insertion affects only one of several alternative transcripts encoding a unique neuronal isoform. AMPK is a cellular energy sensor that regulates a plethora of signaling pathways, including cholesterol and isoprenoid synthesis via its downstream target hydroxy-methylglutaryl (HMG)-CoA reductase. We recently showed that loe interferes with isoprenoid synthesis and increases the prenylation and thereby activation of RhoA. During development, RhoA plays an important role in neuronal outgrowth by activating a signaling cascade that regulates actin dynamics. Here we show that the effect of loe/AMPKγ on RhoA prenylation leads to a hyperactivation of this signaling pathway, causing increased phosphorylation of the actin depolymerizating factor cofilin and accumulation of filamentous actin. Furthermore, our results show that the resulting cytoskeletal changes in loe interfere with neuronal growth and disrupt axonal integrity. Surprisingly, these phenotypes were enhanced by expressing the Slingshot (SSH) phosphatase, which during development promotes actin depolymerization by dephosphorylating cofilin. However, our studies suggest that in the adult SSH promotes actin polymerization, supporting in vitro studies using human SSH1 that suggested that SSH can also stabilize and bundle filamentous actin. Together with the observed increase in SSH levels in the loe mutant, our experiments suggest that in mature neurons SSH may function as a stabilization factor for filamentous actin instead of promoting actin depolymerization.

  7. 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

  8. Actin filament organization of foot processes in vertebrate glomerular podocytes.

    PubMed

    Ichimura, Koichiro; Kurihara, Hidetake; Sakai, Tatsuo

    2007-09-01

    We investigated the actin filament organization and immunolocalization of actin-binding proteins (alpha-actinin and cortactin) in the podocyte foot processes of eight vertebrate species (lamprey, carp, newt, frog, gecko, turtle, quail, and rat). Three types of actin cytoskeleton were found in these foot processes. (1) A cortical actin network with cortactin filling the space between the plasma membrane and the other actin cytoskeletons described below was found in all of the species examined here. The data indicated that the cortical actin network was the minimal essential actin cytoskeleton for the formation and maintenance of the foot processes in vertebrate podocytes. (2) An actin bundle with alpha-actinin existing along the longitudinal axis of foot process above the level of slit diaphragms was only observed in quail and rat. (3) An actin fascicle consisting of much fewer numbers of actin filaments than that of the actin bundle was observed in the species other than quail and rat, but at various frequencies. These findings suggest that the actin bundle is an additional actin cytoskeleton reflecting a functional state peculiar to quail and rat glomeruli. Considering the higher intraglomerular pressure and the extremely thin filtration barrier in birds and mammals, the foot processes probably mainly protect the thinner filtration barrier from the higher internal pressure occurring in quail and rat glomeruli. Therefore, we consider that the actin bundle plays a crucial role in the mechanical protection of the filtration barrier. Moreover, the actin fascicle may be a potential precursor of the actin bundle.

  9. Genetics Home Reference: actin-accumulation myopathy

    MedlinePlus

    ... 7(3):160-8. Citation on PubMed Laing NG, Dye DE, Wallgren-Pettersson C, Richard G, Monnier ... Vigneron J, Wallgren-Pettersson C, Beggs AH, Laing NG. Mutations in the skeletal muscle alpha-actin gene ...

  10. Structural Dynamics of an Actin Spring

    PubMed Central

    Mahadevan, L.; Riera, C.S.; Shin, Jennifer H.

    2011-01-01

    Actin-based motility in cells is usually associated with either polymerization/depolymerization in the presence of cross-linkers or contractility in the presence of myosin motors. Here, we focus on a third distinct mechanism involving actin in motility, seen in the dynamics of an active actin spring that powers the acrosomal reaction of the horseshoe crab (Limulus polyphemus) sperm. During this process, a 60-μm bent and twisted bundle of cross-linked actin uncoils and becomes straight in a few seconds in the presence of Ca2+. This straightening, which occurs at a constant velocity, allows the acrosome to forcefully penetrate the egg. Synthesizing ultrastructural information with the kinetics, energetics, and imaging of calcium binding allows us to construct a dynamical theory for this mechanochemical engine consistent with our experimental observations. It also illuminates the general mechanism by which energy may be stored in conformational changes and released cooperatively in ordered macromolecular assemblies. PMID:21320427

  11. Nematic textures in F-actin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Das, P.; Roy, J.; Chakrabarti, N.; Basu, S.; Das, U.

    2002-05-01

    Actin filaments, which are protein polymers occurring abundantly and ubiquitously in muscle and nonmuscle cells, are known to align in a shear flow, and with an external magnetic field. They form a nematic liquid crystal of the athermal type at a low concentration. Typical defects and textures of the nematic actin liquid crystal are described in this work. The generation of well-aligned nematic single crystals has been reported, in the vicinity of an air-water interface, with the actin filaments spontaneously aligning normal to the interface. Away from the air-water interface nematic single crystal domains are due to the alignment of the actin filaments parallel to the glass surface. The twist-bend nature of the disclination line of integral strength (m=1) has been attributed to the relative magnitudes of the anisotropic curvature elastic constants, which reflect the filaments' semirigidity.

  12. Actinic review of EUV masks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feldmann, Heiko; Ruoff, Johannes; Harnisch, Wolfgang; Kaiser, Winfried

    2010-04-01

    Management of mask defects is a major challenge for the introduction of EUV for HVM production. Once a defect has been detected, its printing impact needs to be predicted. Potentially the defect requires some repair, the success of which needs to be proven. This defect review has to be done with an actinic inspection system that matches the imaging conditions of an EUV scanner. During recent years, several concepts for such an aerial image metrology system (AIMS™) have been proposed. However, until now no commercial solution exists for EUV. Today, advances in EUV optics technology allow envisioning a solution that has been discarded before as unrealistic. We present this concept and its technical cornerstones.While the power requirement for the EUV source is less demanding than for HVM lithography tools, radiance, floor space, and stability are the main criteria for source selection. The requirement to emulate several generations of EUV scanners demands a large flexibility for the ilumination and imaging systems. New critical specifications to the EUV mirrors in the projection microscope can be satisfied using our expertise from lithographic mirrors. In summary, an EUV AIMS™ meeting production requirements seems to be feasible.

  13. Elasticity of F-actin networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gardel, Margaret Lise

    This thesis presents a study of the elasticity and microstructure of three filamentous actin (F-actin) based materials. Using bulk rheology, microrheology, multiple particle tracking and imaging techniques, we study the microscopic origins of the mechanical properties of F-actin networks. We briefly introduce aspects of F-actin and rheology essential to provide a background for and motivate this thesis in Chapter 1. In Chapter 2, we describe the materials and methods used. An introduction to microrheology is given in Chapter 3. In Chapter 4, we study solutions of entangled F-actin. We elucidate the microscopic origins of bulk elasticity using microrheology techniques. We also show that multiple particle tracking can also probe the dynamics of the F-actin solution microstructure. We explore the effect of rigid, incompliant chemical cross-links between actin filaments in Chapter 5. We explore changes in the network microstructure as the concentration of cross-links is varied. We find that the elastic stiffness of these networks is extremely sensitive to small changes in cross-link density. Despite this large variation, the linear viscoelasticity of all networks can be scaled onto a universal master curve; this scaling reveals that the mechanical dissipation of the networks is due to thermal fluctuations of F-actin. At large stresses, the mechanical stiffness of these networks diverges. The form of this stress stiffening response is consistent with the non-linear force extension of a single semi-flexible polymer. Thus, over a large range of conditions, the linear and nonlinear mechanical response of rigidly cross-linked networks is entropic in origin. Finally, at very low cross-link and filament densities, we observe a transition to a qualitatively different type of elasticity; this is consistent with a transition to an enthalpic network elasticity dominated by bending of F-actin. In Chapter 6, we study the elastic properties of F-actin networks assembled with a

  14. Mechanism of Actin Filament Bundling by Fascin

    SciTech Connect

    Jansen, Silvia; Collins, Agnieszka; Yang, Changsong; Rebowski, Grzegorz; Svitkina, Tatyana; Dominguez, Roberto

    2013-03-07

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

  15. Actin: its cumbersome pilgrimage through cellular compartments.

    PubMed

    Schleicher, Michael; Jockusch, Brigitte M

    2008-06-01

    In this article, we follow the history of one of the most abundant, most intensely studied proteins of the eukaryotic cells: actin. We report on hallmarks of its discovery, its structural and functional characterization and localization over time, and point to present days' knowledge on its position as a member of a large family. We focus on the rather puzzling number of diverse functions as proposed for actin as a dual compartment protein. Finally, we venture on some speculations as to its origin.

  16. Communication. Kinetics of scavenging of small, nucleating clusters. First nucleation theorem and sum rules

    DOE PAGES

    Malila, Jussi; McGraw, Robert; Laaksonen, Ari; Lehtinen, Kari E. J.

    2015-01-07

    Despite recent advances in monitoring nucleation from a vapor at close-to-molecular resolution, the identity of the critical cluster, forming the bottleneck for the nucleation process, remains elusive. During past twenty years, the first nucleation theorem has been often used to extract the size of the critical cluster from nucleation rate measurements. However, derivations of the first nucleation theorem invoke certain questionable assumptions that may fail, e.g., in the case of atmospheric new particle formation, including absence of subcritical cluster losses and heterogeneous nucleation on pre-existing nanoparticles. Here we extend the kinetic derivation of the first nucleation theorem to give amore » general framework to include such processes, yielding sum rules connecting the size dependent particle formation and loss rates to the corresponding loss-free nucleation rate and the apparent critical size from a naïve application of the first nucleation theorem that neglects them.« less

  17. Communication. Kinetics of scavenging of small, nucleating clusters. First nucleation theorem and sum rules

    SciTech Connect

    Malila, Jussi; McGraw, Robert; Laaksonen, Ari; Lehtinen, Kari E. J.

    2015-01-07

    Despite recent advances in monitoring nucleation from a vapor at close-to-molecular resolution, the identity of the critical cluster, forming the bottleneck for the nucleation process, remains elusive. During past twenty years, the first nucleation theorem has been often used to extract the size of the critical cluster from nucleation rate measurements. However, derivations of the first nucleation theorem invoke certain questionable assumptions that may fail, e.g., in the case of atmospheric new particle formation, including absence of subcritical cluster losses and heterogeneous nucleation on pre-existing nanoparticles. Here we extend the kinetic derivation of the first nucleation theorem to give a general framework to include such processes, yielding sum rules connecting the size dependent particle formation and loss rates to the corresponding loss-free nucleation rate and the apparent critical size from a naïve application of the first nucleation theorem that neglects them.

  18. Numerical study of the spontaneous nucleation of self-rotational moist gas in a converging-diverging nozzle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ma, Qing-Fen; Hu, Da-Peng; Jiang, Jing-Zhi; Qiu, Zhong-Hua

    2010-01-01

    Spontaneous nucleation is the primary way of droplet formation in the supersonic gas separation technology, and the converging-diverging nozzle is the condensation and separation unit of supersonic gas separation devices. A three-dimensional geometrical model for the generation of self-rotational transonic gas flow is set up, based on which, the spontaneous nucleation of self-rotational transonic moist gas in the converging-diverging nozzle is carried out using an Eulerian multi-fluid model. The simulated results of the main flow and nucleation parameters indicate that the spontaneous nucleation can occur in the diverging part of the nozzle. However, different from the nucleation flow without self-rotation, the distributions of these parameters are unsymmetrical about the nozzle axis due to the irregular flow form caused by the self-rotation of gas flow. The nucleation region is located on the position where gas flows with intense rotation and the self-rotation impacts much on the nucleation process. Stronger rotation delays the onset of spontaneous nucleation and yields lower nucleation rate and narrow nucleation region. In addition, influences of other factors such as inlet total pressure p 0, inlet total temperature T 0, the nozzle-expanding ratio Ȧ and the inlet relative humidity ф 0 on the nucleation of self-rotational moist gas flow in the nozzle are also discussed.

  19. Sarcomeric Pattern Formation by Actin Cluster Coalescence

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

    Contractile function of striated muscle cells depends crucially on the almost crystalline order of actin and myosin filaments in myofibrils, but the physical mechanisms that lead to myofibril assembly remains ill-defined. Passive diffusive sorting of actin filaments into sarcomeric order is kinetically impossible, suggesting a pivotal role of active processes in sarcomeric pattern formation. Using a one-dimensional computational model of an initially unstriated actin bundle, we show that actin filament treadmilling in the presence of processive plus-end crosslinking provides a simple and robust mechanism for the polarity sorting of actin filaments as well as for the correct localization of myosin filaments. We propose that the coalescence of crosslinked actin clusters could be key for sarcomeric pattern formation. In our simulations, sarcomere spacing is set by filament length prompting tight length control already at early stages of pattern formation. The proposed mechanism could be generic and apply both to premyofibrils and nascent myofibrils in developing muscle cells as well as possibly to striated stress-fibers in non-muscle cells. PMID:22685394

  20. Apoptosis and apoptotic pathway in actinic prurigo by immunohistochemistry

    PubMed Central

    Cuevas-González, Juan-Carlos; García-Vázquez, Francisco-Javier; Rodríguez-Lobato, Erika; Farfán-Morales, José-Eduardo

    2016-01-01

    Background Actinic prurigo (AP) is an idiopathic photodermatosis, this entity requires exposure to UV-B and -A to develop lesions. Apoptosis is a physiological death program that can be initiated by a permanently active mechanism (extrinsic pathway) or irreparable damage (intrinsic pathway). Material and Methods Descriptive study, the sample size comprised 64 paraffin blocks of tissue with a diagnosis of AP. In H&E-stained slides, the diagnosis of AP was corroborated, and 1-µm-thick sections were processed for immunohistochemistry (IHC). A database was constructed with SPSS version 20, Inc., Chicago, IL, USA, and descriptive statistics were analyzed by X2 test and comparison of means. Results A total of 64 cases were processed, of which 40 (62.5%) were cheilitis AP and 24 (37.5%) were AP in the skin. Of the 40 cheilitis samples, 27 were positive for Bcl-2 and caspase 3 (67.5%), p53 was expressed in 30 (75%). Of the skin lesions,p53 and caspase 3 were expressed in 18 of 24 cases (75%), and 13 were positive for Bcl-2 (54%). Conclusions We propose that apoptosis is the last step in the type IV subtype a-b hypersensitivity response-activation of the intrinsic pathway indicates that external factors, such as UV-A and -B are the trigger. Key words:Apoptosis, actinic prurigo, cheilitis actinic prurigo. PMID:26615506

  1. 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.

  2. Bubble nucleation of spatial vector fields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Masoumi, Ali; Xiao, Xiao; Yang, I.-Sheng

    2013-02-01

    We study domain walls and bubble nucleation in a nonrelativistic vector field theory with different longitudinal and transverse speeds of sound. We describe analytical and numerical methods to calculate the orientation-dependent domain-wall tension σ(θ). We then use this tension to calculate the critical bubble shape and show that the tunneling exponent is modified by a factor of sound speed ratio. This implies a big modification in the tunneling rate. The longitudinally oriented domain wall tends to be the heaviest and sometime suffers an instability. It can spontaneously break into zigzag segments. In this case, the critical bubble develops kinks, and its energy, and therefore the tunneling rate, scales with the sound speeds very differently than what would be expected for a smooth bubble.

  3. Nuclear and cytoplasmic actin in dinoflagellates.

    PubMed

    Soyer-Gobillard, M O; Ausseil, J; Géraud, M L

    1996-01-01

    Experiments using monoclonal and polyclonal anti-actin antibodies allowed us to demonstrate the presence of F- or G-actin in original protists, dinoflagellates, either by biochemistry, immunofluorescence and in TEM. SDS-PAGE electrophoresis and immunoblottings made either from total or nuclear protein extracts revealed the presence of a 44-kDa band reacting with monoclonal anti-actin antibody in two species, Prorocentrum micans and Crypthecodinium cohnii, and thus demonstrated the presence of actin in nuclear and cytoplasmic fractions. After squash preparation of P micans cells, actin was identified within the nucleus and in some regions of the cytoplasm by immunofluorescence microscopy. Labelling of both the nucleolus and the centrosome region was evident together with amorphous nucleoplasmic material surrounding the chromosomes. The use of cryosections of intact P micans and C cohnii cells for immunofluorescence along with staining with DAPI to delineate the chromosomes themselves, yielded finer resolution of the intranuclear network labelling pattern and allowed us to complete our observations, in particular on the cytoplasmic labelling. In P micans, in addition to the centrosome region, the cytoplasmic channels passing through the nucleus in dividing cells are labelled. In C cohnii, the cortex, the centrosome region, the cytoplasmic channels, the region surrounding the nucleus, the filaments linking it to the cortex and the cleavage furrow are also labelled. In the nucleus of the two species, there is a prominent "weft' of fine actin filaments in the nucleoplasm forming a matrix of varying density around the persistent chromosomes. This actin matrix, of unknown function, is most conspicuous at the end of the S-phase of the cell cycle. Fluorescent derivatives of phalloidin, used as diagnostic cytochemical probes for polymeric actin (F-actin), gave similar results. Positive TEM immunolabelling of intranuclear actin confirms its presence in the nucleoplasm, in the

  4. Gestalt-binding of tropomyosin on