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Sample records for kinesin-dependent microtubule motility

  1. Chlorpyrifos, chlorpyrifos-oxon, and diisopropylfluorophosphate inhibit kinesin-dependent microtubule motility

    SciTech Connect

    Gearhart, Debra A. . E-mail: dgearhar@mcg.edu; Sickles, Dale W.; Buccafusco, Jerry J.; Prendergast, Mark A.; Terry, Alvin V.

    2007-01-01

    Diisopropylfluorophosphate, originally developed as a chemical warfare agent, is structurally similar to nerve agents, and chlorpyrifos has extensive worldwide use as an agricultural pesticide. While inhibition of cholinesterases underlies the acute toxicity of these organophosphates, we previously reported impaired axonal transport in the sciatic nerves from rats treated chronically with subthreshold doses of chlorpyrifos. Those data indicate that chlorpyrifos (and/or its active metabolite, chlorpyrifos-oxon) might directly affect the function of kinesin and/or microtubules-the principal proteins that mediate anterograde axonal transport. The current report describes in vitro assays to assess the concentration-dependent effects of chlorpyrifos (0-10 {mu}M), chlorpyrifos-oxon (0-10 {mu}M), and diisopropylfluorophosphate (0-0.59 nM) on kinesin-dependent microtubule motility. Preincubating bovine brain microtubules with the organophosphates did not alter kinesin-mediated microtubule motility. In contrast, preincubation of bovine brain kinesin with diisopropylfluorophosphate, chlorpyrifos, or chlorpyrifos-oxon produced a concentration-dependent increase in the number of locomoting microtubules that detached from the kinesin-coated glass cover slip. Our data suggest that the organophosphates-chlorpyrifos-oxon, chlorpyrifos, and diisopropylfluorophosphate-directly affect kinesin, thereby disrupting kinesin-dependent transport on microtubules. Kinesin-dependent movement of vesicles, organelles, and other cellular components along microtubules is fundamental to the organization of all eukaryotic cells, especially in neurons where organelles and proteins synthesized in the cell body must move down long axons to pre-synaptic sites in nerve terminals. We postulate that disruption of kinesin-dependent intracellular transport could account for some of the long-term effects of organophosphates on the peripheral and central nervous system.

  2. Tubulin protofilaments and kinesin-dependent motility

    PubMed Central

    1992-01-01

    . This indicates that even if these microtubules differ in surface lattice, this does not affect the motility. PMID:1500429

  3. Highly sensitive kinesin-microtubule motility assays using SLIM

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kandel, Mikhail; Teng, Kai Wen; Selvin, Paul R.; Popescu, Gabriel

    2016-03-01

    We provide an experimental demonstration of Spatial Light Interference Microscopy (SLIM) as a tool for measuring the motion of 25 nm tubulin structures without the use of florescence labels. Compared to intensity imaging methods such as phase contrast or DIC, our imaging technique relies on the ratios of images associated with optically introduced phase shifts, thus implicitly removing background illumination. To demonstrate our new found capabilities, we characterize kinesin-based motility continuously over periods of time where fluorescence would typically photobleach. We exploit this new method to compare the motility of microtubules at low ATP concentrations, with and without the tagging proteins formerly required to perform these studies. Our preliminary results show that the tags have a non-negligible effect on the microtubule motility, slowing the process down by more than 10%.

  4. Sliding of STOP proteins on microtubules: a model system for diffusion-dependent microtubule motility.

    PubMed

    Margolis, R L; Job, D; Pabion, M; Rauch, C T

    1986-01-01

    STOP proteins, of 145 kD, act substoichiometrically to block end-wise disassembly of microtubules. STOPs bind to microtubules either during microtubule assembly or when added at steady state, and when binding to the polymers is apparently irreversible. They are not measurably lost from polymers under competition conditions, and there is no measurable exchange between polymers. Nonetheless, STOP proteins exhibit an extraordinary behavior: they "slide" laterally on the surface of the microtubule. Displacement is assayed by forming hybrid microtubules in which cold stable or cold labile region subunits are labeled. Displacement of STOPs on the polymer with time will cause labeled subunits of cold-stable regions to become increasingly cold labile in a manner reciprocal to cold stabilization of previously cold-labile subunits. Because equilibrium exchange of STOP proteins onto and off the polymers can be ruled out, the displacement of STOPs relative to subunits can only be explained by lateral diffusion or "sliding." Axonal transport and mitotic mechanisms were discussed as implications of such a lateral translocation mechanism for microtubule-dependent motility.

  5. Purified Kinesin Promotes Vesicle Motility and Induces Active Sliding Between Microtubules In vitro

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Urrutia, Raul; McNiven, Mark A.; Albanesi, Joseph P.; Murphy, Douglas B.; Kachar, Bechara

    1991-08-01

    We examined the ability of kinesin to support the movement of adrenal medullary chromaffin granules on microtubules in a defined in vitro system. We found that kinesin and ATP are all that is required to support efficient (33% vesicle motility) and rapid (0.4-0.6 μ m/s) translocation of secretory granule membranes on microtubules in the presence of a low-salt motility buffer. Kinesin also induced the formation of microtubule asters in this buffer, with the plus ends of microtubules located at the center of each aster. This observation indicates that kinesin is capable of promoting active sliding between microtubules toward their respective plus ends, a movement analogous to that of anaphase b in the mitotic spindle. The fact that vesicle translocation, microtubule sliding, and microtubule-dependent kinesin ATPase activities are all enhanced in low-salt buffer establishes a functional parallel between this translocator and other motility ATPases, myosin, and dynein.

  6. Metallic Glass Wire Based Localization of Kinesin/Microtubule Bio-molecular Motility System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, K.; Sikora, A.; Yaginuma, S.; Nakayama, K. S.; Nakazawa, H.; Umetsu, M.; Hwang, W.; Teizer, W.

    2014-03-01

    We report electrophoretic accumulation of microtubules along metallic glass (Pd42.5Cu30Ni7.5P20) wires free-standing in solution. Microtubules are dynamic cytoskeletal filaments. Kinesin is a cytoskeletal motor protein. Functions of these bio-molecules are central to various dynamic cellular processes. Functional artificial organization of bio-molecules is a prerequisite for transferring their native functions into device applications. Fluorescence microscopy at the individual-microtubule level reveals microtubules aligning along the wire axis during the electrophoretic migration. Casein-treated electrodes are effective for releasing trapped microtubules upon removal of the external field. Furthermore, we demonstrate gliding motion of microtubules on kinesin-treated metallic glass wires. The reversible manner in the local adsorption of microtubules, the flexibility of wire electrodes, and the compatibility between the wire electrode and the bio-molecules are beneficial for spatio-temporal manipulation of the motility machinery in 3 dimensions.

  7. Motility and microtubule depolymerization mechanisms of the Kinesin-8 motor, KIF19A

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Doudou; Nitta, Ryo; Morikawa, Manatsu; Yajima, Hiroaki; Inoue, Shigeyuki; Shigematsu, Hideki; Kikkawa, Masahide; Hirokawa, Nobutaka

    2016-01-01

    The kinesin-8 motor, KIF19A, accumulates at cilia tips and controls cilium length. Defective KIF19A leads to hydrocephalus and female infertility because of abnormally elongated cilia. Uniquely among kinesins, KIF19A possesses the dual functions of motility along ciliary microtubules and depolymerization of microtubules. To elucidate the molecular mechanisms of these functions we solved the crystal structure of its motor domain and determined its cryo-electron microscopy structure complexed with a microtubule. The features of KIF19A that enable its dual function are clustered on its microtubule-binding side. Unexpectedly, a destabilized switch II coordinates with a destabilized L8 to enable KIF19A to adjust to both straight and curved microtubule protofilaments. The basic clusters of L2 and L12 tether the microtubule. The long L2 with a characteristic acidic-hydrophobic-basic sequence effectively stabilizes the curved conformation of microtubule ends. Hence, KIF19A utilizes multiple strategies to accomplish the dual functions of motility and microtubule depolymerization by ATP hydrolysis. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.18101.001 PMID:27690357

  8. Single Molecule Investigation of Kinesin-1 Motility Using Engineered Microtubule Defects

    PubMed Central

    Gramlich, Michael W.; Conway, Leslie; Liang, Winnie H.; Labastide, Joelle A.; King, Stephen J.; Xu, Jing; Ross, Jennifer L.

    2017-01-01

    The structure of the microtubule is tightly regulated in cells via a number of microtubule associated proteins and enzymes. Microtubules accumulate structural defects during polymerization, and defect size can further increase under mechanical stresses. Intriguingly, microtubule defects have been shown to be targeted for removal via severing enzymes or self-repair. The cell’s control in defect removal suggests that defects can impact microtubule-based processes, including molecular motor-based intracellular transport. We previously demonstrated that microtubule defects influence cargo transport by multiple kinesin motors. However, mechanistic investigations of the observed effects remained challenging, since defects occur randomly during polymerization and are not directly observable in current motility assays. To overcome this challenge, we used end-to-end annealing to generate defects that are directly observable using standard epi-fluorescence microscopy. We demonstrate that the annealed sites recapitulate the effects of polymerization-derived defects on multiple-motor transport, and thus represent a simple and appropriate model for naturally-occurring defects. We found that single kinesins undergo premature dissociation, but not preferential pausing, at the annealed sites. Our findings provide the first mechanistic insight to how defects impact kinesin-based transport. Preferential dissociation on the single-molecule level has the potential to impair cargo delivery at locations of microtubule defect sites in vivo. PMID:28287156

  9. The role of microtubule dynamics in growth cone motility and axonal growth

    PubMed Central

    1995-01-01

    The growth cone contains dynamic and relatively stable microtubule populations, whose function in motility and axonal growth is uncharacterized. We have used vinblastine at low doses to inhibit microtubule dynamics without appreciable depolymerization to probe the role of these dynamics in growth cone behavior. At doses of vinblastine that interfere only with dynamics, the forward and persistent movement of the growth cone is inhibited and the growth cone wanders without appreciable forward translocation; it quickly resumes forward growth after the vinblastine is washed out. Direct visualization of fluorescently tagged microtubules in these neurons shows that in the absence of dynamic microtubules, the remaining mass of polymer does not invade the peripheral lamella and does not undergo the usual cycle of bundling and splaying and the growth cone stops forward movement. These experiments argue for a role for dynamic microtubules in allowing microtubule rearrangements in the growth cone. These rearrangements seem to be necessary for microtubule bundling, the subsequent coalescence of the cortex around the bundle to form new axon, and forward translocation of the growth cone. PMID:7822411

  10. Single Molecule Investigation of Kinesin-1 Motility Using Engineered Microtubule Defects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gramlich, Michael W.; Conway, Leslie; Liang, Winnie H.; Labastide, Joelle A.; King, Stephen J.; Xu, Jing; Ross, Jennifer L.

    2017-03-01

    The structure of the microtubule is tightly regulated in cells via a number of microtubule associated proteins and enzymes. Microtubules accumulate structural defects during polymerization, and defect size can further increase under mechanical stresses. Intriguingly, microtubule defects have been shown to be targeted for removal via severing enzymes or self-repair. The cell’s control in defect removal suggests that defects can impact microtubule-based processes, including molecular motor-based intracellular transport. We previously demonstrated that microtubule defects influence cargo transport by multiple kinesin motors. However, mechanistic investigations of the observed effects remained challenging, since defects occur randomly during polymerization and are not directly observable in current motility assays. To overcome this challenge, we used end-to-end annealing to generate defects that are directly observable using standard epi-fluorescence microscopy. We demonstrate that the annealed sites recapitulate the effects of polymerization-derived defects on multiple-motor transport, and thus represent a simple and appropriate model for naturally-occurring defects. We found that single kinesins undergo premature dissociation, but not preferential pausing, at the annealed sites. Our findings provide the first mechanistic insight to how defects impact kinesin-based transport. Preferential dissociation on the single-molecule level has the potential to impair cargo delivery at locations of microtubule defect sites in vivo.

  11. A Genome-wide RNAi Screen for Microtubule Bundle Formation and Lysosome Motility Regulation in Drosophila S2 Cells.

    PubMed

    Jolly, Amber L; Luan, Chi-Hao; Dusel, Brendon E; Dunne, Sara F; Winding, Michael; Dixit, Vishrut J; Robins, Chloe; Saluk, Jennifer L; Logan, David J; Carpenter, Anne E; Sharma, Manu; Dean, Deborah; Cohen, Andrew R; Gelfand, Vladimir I

    2016-01-26

    Long-distance intracellular transport of organelles, mRNA, and proteins ("cargo") occurs along the microtubule cytoskeleton by the action of kinesin and dynein motor proteins, but the vast network of factors involved in regulating intracellular cargo transport are still unknown. We capitalize on the Drosophila melanogaster S2 model cell system to monitor lysosome transport along microtubule bundles, which require enzymatically active kinesin-1 motor protein for their formation. We use an automated tracking program and a naive Bayesian classifier for the multivariate motility data to analyze 15,683 gene phenotypes and find 98 proteins involved in regulating lysosome motility along microtubules and 48 involved in the formation of microtubule filled processes in S2 cells. We identify innate immunity genes, ion channels, and signaling proteins having a role in lysosome motility regulation and find an unexpected relationship between the dynein motor, Rab7a, and lysosome motility regulation.

  12. A genome-wide RNAi screen for microtubule bundle formation and lysosome motility regulation in Drosophila S2 cells

    PubMed Central

    Jolly, Amber L.; Luan, Chi-Hao; Dusel, Brendon E.; Dunne, Sara Fernandez; Winding, Michael; Dixit, Vishrut J.; Robins, Chloe; Saluk, Jennifer L.; Logan, David J.; Carpenter, Anne E.; Sharma, Manu; Dean, Deborah; Cohen, Andrew R.; Gelfand, Vladimir I.

    2016-01-01

    Summary Long-distance intracellular transport of organelles, mRNA, and proteins (“cargo”) occurs along the microtubule cytoskeleton by the action of kinesin and dynein motor proteins; the vast network of factors involved in regulating intracellular cargo transport are still unknown. We capitalize on the Drosophila melanogaster S2 model cell system to monitor lysosome transport along microtubule bundles, which require enzymatically active kinesin-1 motor protein for their formation. We use an automated tracking program and a naïve Bayesian classifier for the multivariate motility data to analyze 15,683 gene phenotypes, and find 98 proteins involved in regulating lysosome motility along microtubules and 48 involved in the formation of microtubule filled processes in S2 cells. We identify innate immunity genes, ion channels and signaling proteins having a role in lysosome motility regulation, and find an unexpected relationship between the dynein motor, Rab7a and lysosome motility regulation. PMID:26774481

  13. Merkel Cell Polyomavirus Small T Antigen Mediates Microtubule Destabilization To Promote Cell Motility and Migration

    PubMed Central

    Knight, Laura M.; Stakaityte, Gabriele; Wood, Jennifer, J.; Abdul-Sada, Hussein; Griffiths, David A.; Howell, Gareth J.; Wheat, Rachel; Blair, G. Eric; Steven, Neil M.; Macdonald, Andrew; Blackbourn, David J.

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC) is an aggressive skin cancer of neuroendocrine origin with a high propensity for recurrence and metastasis. Merkel cell polyomavirus (MCPyV) causes the majority of MCC cases due to the expression of the MCPyV small and large tumor antigens (ST and LT, respectively). Although a number of molecular mechanisms have been attributed to MCPyV tumor antigen-mediated cellular transformation or replication, to date, no studies have investigated any potential link between MCPyV T antigen expression and the highly metastatic nature of MCC. Here we use a quantitative proteomic approach to show that MCPyV ST promotes differential expression of cellular proteins implicated in microtubule-associated cytoskeletal organization and dynamics. Intriguingly, we demonstrate that MCPyV ST expression promotes microtubule destabilization, leading to a motile and migratory phenotype. We further highlight the essential role of the microtubule-associated protein stathmin in MCPyV ST-mediated microtubule destabilization and cell motility and implicate the cellular phosphatase catalytic subunit protein phosphatase 4C (PP4C) in the regulation of this process. These findings suggest a possible molecular mechanism for the highly metastatic phenotype associated with MCC. IMPORTANCE Merkel cell polyomavirus (MCPyV) causes the majority of cases of Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC), an aggressive skin cancer with a high metastatic potential. However, the molecular mechanisms leading to virally induced cancer development have yet to be fully elucidated. In particular, no studies have investigated any potential link between the virus and the highly metastatic nature of MCC. We demonstrate that the MCPyV small tumor antigen (ST) promotes the destabilization of the host cell microtubule network, which leads to a more motile and migratory cell phenotype. We further show that MCPyV ST induces this process by regulating the phosphorylation status of the cellular microtubule

  14. Inhibition of kinesin-driven microtubule motility by monoclonal antibodies to kinesin heavy chains

    PubMed Central

    1988-01-01

    We have prepared and characterized seven mouse monoclonal antibodies (SUK 1-7) to the 130-kD heavy chain of sea urchin egg kinesin. On immunoblots, SUK 3 and SUK 4 cross-reacted with Drosophila embryo 116- kD heavy chains, and SUK 4, SUK 5, SUK 6, and SUK 7 bound to the 120-kD heavy chains of bovine brain kinesin. Three out of seven monoclonal antikinesins (SUK 4, SUK 6, and SUK 7) caused a dose-dependent inhibition of sea urchin egg kinesin-induced microtubule translocation, whereas the other four monoclonal antibodies had no detectable effect on this motility. The inhibitory monoclonal antibodies (SUK 4, SUK 6, and SUK 7) appear to bind to spatially related sites on an ATP- sensitive microtubule binding 45-kD chymotryptic fragment of the 130-kD heavy chain, whereas SUK 2 binds to a spatially distinct site. None of the monoclonal antikinesins inhibited the microtubule activated MgATPase activity of kinesin, suggesting that SUK 4, SUK 6, and SUK 7 uncouple this MgATPase activity from motility. PMID:2974459

  15. Control and gating of kinesin-microtubule motility on electrically heated thermo-chips.

    PubMed

    Ramsey, Laurence; Schroeder, Viktor; van Zalinge, Harm; Berndt, Michael; Korten, Till; Diez, Stefan; Nicolau, Dan V

    2014-06-01

    First lab-on-chip devices based on active transport by biomolecular motors have been demonstrated for basic detection and sorting applications. However, to fully employ the advantages of such hybrid nanotechnology, versatile spatial and temporal control mechanisms are required. Using a thermo-responsive polymer, we demonstrated a temperature controlled gate that either allows or disallows the passing of microtubules through a topographically defined channel. The gate is addressed by a narrow gold wire, which acts as a local heating element. It is shown that the electrical current flowing through a narrow gold channel can control the local temperature and as a result the conformation of the polymer. This is the first demonstration of a spatially addressable gate for microtubule motility which is a key element of nanodevices based on biomolecular motors.

  16. Regulation of Kif15 localization and motility by the C-terminus of TPX2 and microtubule dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Mann, Barbara J.; Balchand, Sai K.; Wadsworth, Patricia

    2017-01-01

    Mitotic motor proteins generate force to establish and maintain spindle bipolarity, but how they are temporally and spatially regulated in vivo is unclear. Prior work demonstrated that a microtubule-associated protein, TPX2, targets kinesin-5 and kinesin-12 motors to spindle microtubules. The C-terminal domain of TPX2 contributes to the localization and motility of the kinesin-5, Eg5, but it is not known whether this domain regulates kinesin-12, Kif15. We found that the C-terminal domain of TPX2 contributes to the localization of Kif15 to spindle microtubules in cells and suppresses motor walking in vitro. Kif15 and Eg5 are partially redundant motors, and overexpressed Kif15 can drive spindle formation in the absence of Eg5 activity. Kif15-dependent bipolar spindle formation in vivo requires the C-terminal domain of TPX2. In the spindle, fluorescent puncta of GFP-Kif15 move toward the equatorial region at a rate equivalent to microtubule growth. Reduction of microtubule growth with paclitaxel suppresses GFP-Kif15 motility, demonstrating that dynamic microtubules contribute to Kif15 behavior. Our results show that the C-terminal region of TPX2 regulates Kif15 in vitro, contributes to motor localization in cells, and is required for Kif15 force generation in vivo and further reveal that dynamic microtubules contribute to Kif15 behavior in vivo. PMID:27852894

  17. Microtubules Are Essential for Mitochondrial Dynamics-Fission, Fusion, and Motility-in Dictyostelium discoideum.

    PubMed

    Woods, Laken C; Berbusse, Gregory W; Naylor, Kari

    2016-01-01

    Mitochondrial function is dependent upon mitochondrial structure which is in turn dependent upon mitochondrial dynamics, including fission, fusion, and motility. Here we examined the relationship between mitochondrial dynamics and the cytoskeleton in Dictyostelium discoideum. Using time-lapse analysis, we quantified mitochondrial fission, fusion, and motility in the presence of cytoskeleton disrupting pharmaceuticals and the absence of the potential mitochondria-cytoskeleton linker protein, CluA. Our results indicate that microtubules are essential for mitochondrial movement, as well as fission and fusion; actin plays a less significant role, perhaps selecting the mitochondria for transport. We also suggest that CluA is not a linker protein but plays an unidentified role in mitochondrial fission and fusion. The significance of our work is to gain further insight into the role the cytoskeleton plays in mitochondrial dynamics and function. By better understanding these processes we can better appreciate the underlying mitochondrial contributions to many neurological disorders characterized by altered mitochondrial dynamics, structure, and/or function.

  18. Glucose regulated proteins 78 and 75 bind to the receptor for hyaluronan mediated motility in interphase microtubules

    SciTech Connect

    Kuwabara, Hiroko . E-mail: pa2020@art.osaka-med.ac.jp; Yoneda, Masahiko; Hayasaki, Hana; Nakamura, Toshiya; Mori, Hiroshi

    2006-01-20

    The receptor for hyaluronan mediated motility (RHAMM), which is a hyaluronan-binding protein, is a centrosomal and microtubal protein. Here, we have identified two RHAMM-binding proteins, glucose regulated protein (GRP) 78 and GRP75, using co-immunoprecipitation analysis. These two proteins directly bound to glutathione-S-transferase-RHAMM fusion proteins. By double immunostaining, GRP78 and GRP75 colocalized with RHAMM in interphase microtubules, but were separated in mitotic spindles. Prevention of microtubule polymerization by TN-16 and vincristine sulfate induced RHAMM overexpression without a significant change in GRP78/75. Taken together, GRP78/75 and RHAMM complexes may stabilize microtubules in the interphase, associated with a downregulation of RHAMM. These results reveal a new biochemical activity of RHAMM.

  19. Simultaneous Visualization of Peroxisomes and Cytoskeletal Elements Reveals Actin and Not Microtubule-Based Peroxisome Motility in Plants1[w

    PubMed Central

    Mathur, Jaideep; Mathur, Neeta; Hülskamp, Martin

    2002-01-01

    Peroxisomes were visualized in living plant cells using a yellow fluorescent protein tagged with a peroxisomal targeting signal consisting of the SKL motif. Simultaneous visualization of peroxisomes and microfilaments/microtubules was accomplished in onion (Allium cepa) epidermal cells transiently expressing the yellow fluorescent protein-peroxi construct, a green fluorescent protein-mTalin construct that labels filamentous-actin filaments, and a green fluorescent protein-microtubule-binding domain construct that labels microtubules. The covisualization of peroxisomes and cytoskeletal elements revealed that, contrary to the reports from animal cells, peroxisomes in plants appear to associate with actin filaments and not microtubules. That peroxisome movement is actin based was shown by pharmacological studies. For this analysis we used onion epidermal cells and various cell types of Arabidopsis including trichomes, root hairs, and root cortex cells exhibiting different modes of growth. In transient onion epidermis assay and in transgenic Arabidopsis plants, an interference with the actin cytoskeleton resulted in progressive loss of saltatory movement followed by the aggregation and a complete cessation of peroxisome motility within 30 min of drug application. Microtubule depolymerization or stabilization had no effect. PMID:11891258

  20. Fission yeast mitochondria are distributed by dynamic microtubules in a motor-independent manner.

    PubMed

    Li, Tianpeng; Zheng, Fan; Cheung, Martin; Wang, Fengsong; Fu, Chuanhai

    2015-06-05

    The cytoskeleton plays a critical role in regulating mitochondria distribution. Similar to axonal mitochondria, the fission yeast mitochondria are distributed by the microtubule cytoskeleton, but this is regulated by a motor-independent mechanism depending on the microtubule associated protein mmb1p as the absence of mmb1p causes mitochondria aggregation. In this study, using a series of chimeric proteins to control the subcellular localization and motility of mitochondria, we show that a chimeric molecule containing a microtubule binding domain and the mitochondria outer membrane protein tom22p can restore the normal interconnected mitochondria network in mmb1-deletion (mmb1∆) cells. In contrast, increasing the motility of mitochondria by using a chimeric molecule containing a kinesin motor domain and tom22p cannot rescue mitochondria aggregation defects in mmb1∆ cells. Intriguingly a chimeric molecule carrying an actin binding domain and tom22p results in mitochondria associated with actin filaments at the actomyosin ring during mitosis, leading to cytokinesis defects. These findings suggest that the passive motor-independent microtubule-based mechanism is the major contributor to mitochondria distribution in wild type fission yeast cells. Hence, we establish that attachment to microtubules, but not kinesin-dependent movement and the actin cytoskeleton, is required and crucial for proper mitochondria distribution in fission yeast.

  1. High-resolution tracking of microtubule motility driven by a single kinesin motor.

    PubMed Central

    Malik, F; Brillinger, D; Vale, R D

    1994-01-01

    Kinesin is a microtubule-based motor protein that contains two identical force-generating subunits. The kinesin binding sites along the microtubule lie 8 nm apart (the dimension of the tubulin dimer), which implies that kinesin must translocate a minimum distance of 8 nm per hydrolysis cycle. Measurements of kinesin's microtubule-stimulated ATPase activity (approximately 20 ATP per sec) and velocity of transport (approximately 0.6 micron/sec), however, suggest that the net distance moved per ATP (approximately 30 nm) may be greater than one tubulin dimer under zero load conditions. To explore how kinesin translocates during its ATPase cycle, we constructed a microscope capable of tracking movement with 1-nm resolution at a bandwidth of 200 Hz and used this device to examine microtubule movement driven by a single kinesin motor. Regular stepwise movements were not observed in displacement traces of moving microtubules, although Brownian forces acting on elastic elements within the kinesin motor precluded detection of steps that were < 12 nm. Though individual steps of approximately 16 nm were occasionally observed, their infrequent occurrence suggests that kinesin rarely moves abruptly by distances of two or more tubulin subunits during its ATP hydrolysis cycle. Instead it is more likely that kinesin moves forward by the distance of only a single tubulin subunit under zero load conditions. Images PMID:8183952

  2. Regulation of early endocytic vesicle motility and fission in a reconstituted system.

    PubMed

    Bananis, Eustratios; Murray, John W; Stockert, Richard J; Satir, Peter; Wolkoff, Allan W

    2003-07-01

    We previously established conditions to reconstitute kinesin-dependent early endocytic vesicle motility and fission on microtubules in vitro. The present study examined the question whether motility and fission are regulated in this system. Screening for proteins by immunofluorescence microscopy revealed that the small G protein, Rab4, was associated with 80% of hepatocyte-derived early endocytic vesicles that contain the ligand asialoorosomucoid (ASOR). By contrast, other markers for early endocytic vesicles including clathrin, Rab5 and EEA1 were present in the preparation but did not colocalize with the ASOR vesicles. Guanine nucleotides exchanged into the Rab4 present on the vesicles as shown by solubilization of Rab4 by Rab-GDI; solubilization was inhibited by incubation with GTP-gamma-S and promoted by GDP. Pre-incubation of vesicles with GDP increased the number of vesicles moving on microtubules and markedly increased vesicle fission. This increase in motility from GDP was shown to be towards the minus end of microtubules, possibly through activation of the minus-end-directed kinesin, KIFC2. Pre-incubation of vesicles with GTP-gamma-S, by contrast, repressed motility. Addition of exogenous GST-Rab4- GTP-gamma-S led to a further repression of motility and fission. Repression was not seen with addition of GST-Rab4-GDP. Treatment of vesicles with Rab4 antibody also repressed motility, and repression was not seen when vesicles were pre-incubated with GDP. Based on these results we hypothesize that endogenous Rab4-GTP suppresses motility of ASOR-containing vesicles in hepatocytes and that conversion of Rab4-GTP to Rab4-GDP serves as a molecular switch that activates minus-end kinesin-based motility, facilitating early endosome fission and consequent receptor-ligand segregation.

  3. Microtubule-dependent Plus- and Minus End–directed Motilities Are Competing Processes for Nuclear Targeting of Adenovirus

    PubMed Central

    Suomalainen, Maarit; Nakano, Michel Y.; Keller, Stephan; Boucke, Karin; Stidwill, Robert P.; Greber, Urs F.

    1999-01-01

    Adenovirus (Ad) enters target cells by receptor-mediated endocytosis, escapes to the cytosol, and then delivers its DNA genome into the nucleus. Here we analyzed the trafficking of fluorophore-tagged viruses in HeLa and TC7 cells by time-lapse microscopy. Our results show that native or taxol-stabilized microtubules (MTs) support alternating minus- and plus end–directed movements of cytosolic virus with elementary speeds up to 2.6 μm/s. No directed movement was observed in nocodazole-treated cells. Switching between plus- and minus end–directed elementary speeds at frequencies up to 1 Hz was observed in the periphery and near the MT organizing center (MTOC) after recovery from nocodazole treatment. MT-dependent motilities allowed virus accumulation near the MTOC at population speeds of 1–10 μm/min, depending on the cell type. Overexpression of p50/dynamitin, which is known to affect dynein-dependent minus end–directed vesicular transport, significantly reduced the extent and the frequency of minus end–directed migration of cytosolic virus, and increased the frequency, but not the extent of plus end–directed motility. The data imply that a single cytosolic Ad particle engages with two types of MT-dependent motor activities, the minus end– directed cytoplasmic dynein and an unknown plus end– directed activity. PMID:10037788

  4. Effect of drugs affecting microtubular assembly on microtubules, phospholipid synthesis and physiological indices (signalling, growth, motility and phagocytosis) in Tetrahymena pyriformis.

    PubMed

    Kovács, P; Csaba, G

    2006-01-01

    Structural changes of microtubules, incorporation of radioactively labelled components into phospholipids, cell motility, growth and phagocytosis were studied under the effect of four drugs affecting microtubular assembly: colchicine, nocodazole, vinblastine and taxol. Although the first three agents influence microtubules in the direction of depolymerization and the fourth stabilizes them, their effects on the structure of microtubules cannot be explained by this. Using confocal microscopy after an acetylated anti-tubulin label, in nocodazole- and colchicine-treated cells, the basal body cages disappear and longitudinal microtubules (LM) became thinner without changing transversal microtubules (TM). After taxol treatment LM also became thinner, however TM disappeared. Under the effect of vinblastine TM became thinner, without influencing LM. These drugs influence the incorporation of components ([(3)H]-serine, [(3)H]-palmitic acid and (32)P) into phospholipids, however their effect is equivocal and cannot be consequently coupled with the effect on the microtubules. Nocodazole, vinblastine and taxol significantly reduced the cell's motility, however colchicine did so to a lesser degree. Vinblastine and nocodazole totally inhibited, and taxol significantly decreased cell growth, while colchicine in a lower concentration increased the multiplication of cells. Phagocytosis was not significantly influenced after 1 min, but after 5 min all the agents studied (except colchicine) significantly inhibited phagocytosis. After 15 and 30 min each molecule caused highly significant inhibition. The experiments demonstrate that drugs affecting microtubular assembly dynamics influence differently the diverse (longitudinal, transversal etc.) microtubular systems of Tetrahymena and also differently influence microtubule-dependent physiological processes. The latter are more dependent on microtubular dynamics than are changes in phospholipid signalling.

  5. Effects of eribulin, vincristine, paclitaxel and ixabepilone on fast axonal transport and kinesin-1 driven microtubule gliding: Implications for chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy

    PubMed Central

    LaPointe, Nichole E.; Morfini, Gerardo; Brady, Scott T.; Feinstein, Stuart C.; Wilson, Leslie; Jordan, Mary Ann

    2014-01-01

    Chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN) is a serious, painful and dose-limiting side effect of cancer drugs that target microtubules. The mechanisms underlying the neuronal damage are unknown, but may include disruption of fast axonal transport, an essential microtubule-based process that moves cellular components over long distances between neuronal cell bodies and nerve terminals. This idea is supported by the “dying back” pattern of degeneration observed in CIPN, and by the selective vulnerability of sensory neurons bearing the longest axonal projections. In this study, we test the hypothesis that microtubule-targeting drugs disrupt fast axonal transport using vesicle motility assays in isolated squid axoplasm and a cell-free microtubule gliding assay with defined components. We compare four clinically-used drugs, eribulin, vincristine, paclitaxel and ixabepilone. Of these, eribulin is associated with a relatively low incidence of severe neuropathy, while vincristine has a relatively high incidence. In vesicle motility assays, we found that all four drugs inhibited anterograde (conventional kinesin-dependent) fast axonal transport, with the potency being vincristine = ixabepilone > paclitaxel = eribulin. Interestingly, eribulin and paclitaxel did not inhibit retrograde (cytoplasmic dynein-dependent) fast axonal transport, in contrast to vincristine and ixabepilone. Similarly, vincristine and ixabepilone both exerted significant inhibitory effects in an in vitro microtubule gliding assay consisting of recombinant kinesin (kinesin-1) and microtubules composed of purified bovine brain tubulin, whereas paclitaxel and eribulin had negligible effects. Our results suggest that (i) inhibition of microtubule-based fast axonal transport may be a significant contributor to neurotoxicity induced by microtubule-targeting drugs, and (ii) that individual microtubule-targeting drugs affect fast axonal transport through different mechanisms. PMID:23711742

  6. The N-DRC forms a conserved biochemical complex that maintains outer doublet alignment and limits microtubule sliding in motile axonemes

    PubMed Central

    Bower, Raqual; Tritschler, Douglas; VanderWaal, Kristyn; Perrone, Catherine A.; Mueller, Joshua; Fox, Laura; Sale, Winfield S.; Porter, M. E.

    2013-01-01

    The nexin–dynein regulatory complex (N-DRC) is proposed to coordinate dynein arm activity and interconnect doublet microtubules. Here we identify a conserved region in DRC4 critical for assembly of the N-DRC into the axoneme. At least 10 subunits associate with DRC4 to form a discrete complex distinct from other axonemal substructures. Transformation of drc4 mutants with epitope-tagged DRC4 rescues the motility defects and restores assembly of missing DRC subunits and associated inner-arm dyneins. Four new DRC subunits contain calcium-signaling motifs and/or AAA domains and are nearly ubiquitous in species with motile cilia. However, drc mutants are motile and maintain the 9 + 2 organization of the axoneme. To evaluate the function of the N-DRC, we analyzed ATP-induced reactivation of isolated axonemes. Rather than the reactivated bending observed with wild-type axonemes, ATP addition to drc-mutant axonemes resulted in splaying of doublets in the distal region, followed by oscillatory bending between pairs of doublets. Thus the N-DRC provides some but not all of the resistance to microtubule sliding and helps to maintain optimal alignment of doublets for productive flagellar motility. These findings provide new insights into the mechanisms that regulate motility and further highlight the importance of the proximal region of the axoneme in generating flagellar bending. PMID:23427265

  7. Purification and assay of a 145-kDa protein (STOP145) with microtubule-stabilizing and motility behavior.

    PubMed

    Margolis, R L; Rauch, C T; Job, D

    1986-02-01

    The capacity of microtubules to disassemble in vitro is profoundly affected by a protein factor designated STOP (stable tubule only polypeptide). Here we report the isolation of STOP protein and confirm that its activity is, as predicted, highly substoichiometric to the tubulin in microtubules. The isolation of the 145-kDa STOP (STOP145) protein has been effected from isolated cold-stable microtubules by two column steps: DEAE ion-exchange and a calmodulin affinity column. To confirm the protein's activity we have produced an antibody against STOP145 and have used the antibody to specifically remove the protein and the activity using an antibody-linked affinity column. We conclude that the STOP145 protein accounts for the observed in vitro stabilization of microtubules.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2009-01-01

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

  9. Microtubule dynamics and organization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dogterom, Marileen

    2000-03-01

    Microtubules are rigid biopolymers found in all higher order cells. They are a mayor part of the cytoskeleton, the network of protein polymers that gives the cell its shape and rigidity and allows for various forms of (intra)cellular motility. The intracellular spatial organization of the microtubule network is constantly changing as the microtubules adapt to their different functions. In part, this spatial organization depends on the assembly dynamics (including microtubule nucleation) and forces generated by the microtubules themselves. To understand these mechanisms, we study the physical aspects connected with the assembly, force generation and spatial organization of microtubules in simplified model systems, in the absence of other cellular components. We measure the forces generated by individual microtubules by making them grow against a microfabricated barrier. These experiments show that a single microtubule can generate at least several picoNewton of force, comparable to what is known for motor proteins. Theoretical modeling of force-generation by multi-protofilament polymers is used to predict force-velocity relations that can be compared to experimental data. We study the self-organization of microtubules by confining them to microfabricated chambers that mimic the geometry of living cells. The distribution of microtubule nucleation sites in these chambers is controlled to study its effect on the organization of the microtubule network. We find that so-called microtubule asters position themselves in response to forces generated by dynamic microtubules. Experiments aimed at measuring the forces acting on these asters using optical trapping techniques will be described.

  10. Down-Regulation of Desmosomes in Cultured Cells: The Roles of PKC, Microtubules and Lysosomal/Proteasomal Degradation

    PubMed Central

    McHarg, Selina; Hopkins, Gemma; Lim, Lusiana; Garrod, David

    2014-01-01

    Desmosomes are intercellular adhesive junctions of major importance for tissue integrity. To allow cell motility and migration they are down-regulated in epidermal wound healing. Electron microscopy indicates that whole desmosomes are internalised by cells in tissues, but the mechanism of down-regulation is unclear. In this paper we provide an overview of the internalisation of half-desmosomes by cultured cells induced by calcium chelation. Our results show that: (i) half desmosome internalisation is dependent on conventional PKC isoforms; (ii) microtubules transport internalised half desmosomes to the region of the centrosome by a kinesin-dependent mechanism; (iii) desmosomal proteins remain colocalised after internalisation and are not recycled to the cell surface; (iv) internalised desmosomes are degraded by the combined action of lysosomes and proteasomes. We also confirm that half desmosome internalisation is dependent upon the actin cytoskeleton. These results suggest that half desmosomes are not disassembled and recycled during or after internalisation but instead are transported to the centrosomal region where they are degraded. These findings may have significance for the down-regulation of desmosomes in wounds. PMID:25291180

  11. Do prokaryotes contain microtubules?

    PubMed Central

    Bermudes, D; Hinkle, G; Margulis, L

    1994-01-01

    In eukaryotic cells, microtubules are 24-nm-diameter tubular structures composed of a class of conserved proteins called tubulin. They are involved in numerous cell functions including ciliary motility, nerve cell elongation, pigment migration, centrosome formation, and chromosome movement. Although cytoplasmic tubules and fibers have been observed in bacteria, some with diameters similar to those of eukaryotes, no homologies to eukaryotic microtubules have been established. Certain groups of bacteria including azotobacters, cyanobacteria, enteric bacteria, and spirochetes have been frequently observed to possess microtubule-like structures, and others, including archaebacteria, have been shown to be sensitive to drugs that inhibit the polymerization of microtubules. Although little biochemical or molecular biological information is available, the differences observed among these prokaryotic structures suggest that their composition generally differs among themselves as well as from that of eukaryotes. We review the distribution of cytoplasmic tubules in prokaryotes, even though, in all cases, their functions remain unknown. At least some tend to occur in cells that are large, elongate, and motile, suggesting that they may be involved in cytoskeletal functions, intracellular motility, or transport activities comparable to those performed by eukaryotic microtubules. In Escherichia coli, the FtsZ protein is associated with the formation of a ring in the division zone between the newly forming offspring cells. Like tubulin, FtsZ is a GTPase and shares with tubulin a 7-amino-acid motif, making it a promising candidate in which to seek the origin of tubulins. Images PMID:7968920

  12. Do prokaryotes contain microtubules?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bermudes, D.; Hinkle, G.; Margulis, L.

    1994-01-01

    In eukaryotic cells, microtubules are 24-nm-diameter tubular structures composed of a class of conserved proteins called tubulin. They are involved in numerous cell functions including ciliary motility, nerve cell elongation, pigment migration, centrosome formation, and chromosome movement. Although cytoplasmic tubules and fibers have been observed in bacteria, some with diameters similar to those of eukaryotes, no homologies to eukaryotic microtubules have been established. Certain groups of bacteria including azotobacters, cyanobacteria, enteric bacteria, and spirochetes have been frequently observed to possess microtubule-like structures, and others, including archaebacteria, have been shown to be sensitive to drugs that inhibit the polymerization of microtubules. Although little biochemical or molecular biological information is available, the differences observed among these prokaryotic structures suggest that their composition generally differs among themselves as well as from that of eukaryotes. We review the distribution of cytoplasmic tubules in prokaryotes, even though, in all cases, their functions remain unknown. At least some tend to occur in cells that are large, elongate, and motile, suggesting that they may be involved in cytoskeletal functions, intracellular motility, or transport activities comparable to those performed by eukaryotic microtubules. In Escherichia coli, the FtsZ protein is associated with the formation of a ring in the division zone between the newly forming offspring cells. Like tubulin, FtsZ is a GTPase and shares with tubulin a 7-amino-acid motif, making it a promising candidate in which to seek the origin of tubulins.

  13. Pathogenic forms of tau inhibit kinesin-dependent axonal transport through a mechanism involving activation of axonal phosphotransferases.

    PubMed

    Kanaan, Nicholas M; Morfini, Gerardo A; LaPointe, Nichole E; Pigino, Gustavo F; Patterson, Kristina R; Song, Yuyu; Andreadis, Athena; Fu, Yifan; Brady, Scott T; Binder, Lester I

    2011-07-06

    Aggregated filamentous forms of hyperphosphorylated tau (a microtubule-associated protein) represent pathological hallmarks of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and other tauopathies. While axonal transport dysfunction is thought to represent a primary pathogenic factor in AD and other neurodegenerative diseases, the direct molecular link between pathogenic forms of tau and deficits in axonal transport remain unclear. Recently, we demonstrated that filamentous, but not soluble, forms of wild-type tau inhibit anterograde, kinesin-based fast axonal transport (FAT) by activating axonal protein phosphatase 1 (PP1) and glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK3), independent of microtubule binding. Here, we demonstrate that amino acids 2-18 of tau, comprising a phosphatase-activating domain (PAD), are necessary and sufficient for activation of this pathway in axoplasms isolated from squid giant axons. Various pathogenic forms of tau displaying increased exposure of PAD inhibited anterograde FAT in squid axoplasm. Importantly, immunohistochemical studies using a novel PAD-specific monoclonal antibody in human postmortem tissue indicated that increased PAD exposure represents an early pathogenic event in AD that closely associates in time with AT8 immunoreactivity, an early marker of pathological tau. We propose a model of pathogenesis in which disease-associated changes in tau conformation lead to increased exposure of PAD, activation of PP1-GSK3, and inhibition of FAT. Results from these studies reveal a novel role for tau in modulating axonal phosphotransferases and provide a molecular basis for a toxic gain-of-function associated with pathogenic forms of tau.

  14. Active sliding between cytoplasmic microtubules.

    PubMed

    Koonce, M P; Tong, J; Euteneuer, U; Schliwa, M

    Microtubules are versatile cellular polymers that play a role in cell shape determination and mediate various motile processes such as ciliary and flagellar bending, chromosome movements and organelle transport. That a sliding microtubule mechanism can generate force has been demonstrated in highly ordered structures such as axonemes, and microtubule-based force generation almost certainly contributes to the function of mitotic and meiotic spindles. Most cytoplasmic microtubule arrays, however, do not exhibit the structural regularity of axonemes and some spindles, and often appear disorganized. Yet many cellular activities (such as shape changes during morphogenesis, axonal extension and spindle assembly) involve highly coordinated microtubule behaviour and possibly require force generated by an intermicrotubule sliding mechanism, or perhaps use sliding to move microtubules rapidly into a protrusion for stabilization. Here we show that active sliding between cytoplasmic microtubules can occur in microtubule bundles of the amoeba Reticulomyxa. A force-producing mechanism of this sort could be used by this organism to facilitate the extension of cell processes and to generate the dynamic movements of the cytoplasmic network.

  15. Microtubule Severing Stymied by Free Tubulin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ross, Jennifer; Bailey, Megan

    2015-03-01

    Proper organization of the microtubule cytoskeletal network is required to perform many necessary cellular functions including mitosis, cell development, and cell motility. Network organization is achieved through filament remodeling by microtubule-associated proteins (MAPs) that control microtubule dynamics. MAPs that stabilize are relatively well understood, while less is known about destabilizing MAPs, such as severing enzymes. Katanin, the first-discovered microtubule-severing enzyme, is a AAA + enzyme that oligomerizes into hexamers and uses ATP hydrolysis to sever microtubules. Using quantitative fluorescence imaging on reconstituted microtubule severing assays in vitro we investigate how katanin can regulate microtubule dynamics. Interestingly, we find microtubule dynamics inhibits katanin severing activity; dynamic microtubules are not severed. Using systematic experiments introducing free tubulin into the assays we find that free tubulin can compete for microtubule filaments for the katanin proteins. Our work indicates that katanin could function best on stabile microtubules or stabile regions of microtubules in cells in regions where free tubulin is sequesters, low, or depleted.

  16. Optical approaches to the study of foraminiferan motility.

    PubMed

    Travis, J L; Bowser, S S

    1988-01-01

    Microtubules are the major cytoskeletal component of foraminiferan reticulopodia. Video-enhanced differential interference contrast light microscopy has demonstrated that the microtubules serve as the intracellular tracks along which rapid bidirectional organelle transport and cell surface motility occurs. Microtubules appear to move, both axially and laterally within the pseudopodial cytoplasm, and these microtubule translocations appear to drive the various reticulopodial movements. F-actin is localized to discrete filament plaques form at sites of pseudopod-substrate adhesion. Correlative immunofluorescence and electron microscopy reveals a structural interaction between microtubules and the actin-containing filament plaques. Our recent data on reticulopodial motility are discussed in an historical context, and a model for foram motility, based on motile microtubules, is presented.

  17. How dynein moves along microtubules

    PubMed Central

    Bhabha, Gira; Johnson, Graham T.; Schroeder, Courtney M.; Vale, Ronald D.

    2015-01-01

    Cytoplasmic dynein, a member of the AAA family of ATPases, drives the processive movement of numerous intracellular cargos towards the minus end of microtubules. Here, we summarize the structural and motile properties of dynein and highlight features that distinguish this motor from kinesin-1 and myosin V, two well-studied transport motors. Integrating information from recent crystal and cryo-EM structures as well as high-resolution single molecule studies, we also discuss models for how dynein biases its movement in one direction along a microtubule track, and present a movie that illustrates these principles. PMID:26678005

  18. CYTOPLASMIC MICROTUBULES

    PubMed Central

    Slautterback, David B.

    1963-01-01

    Small cytoplasmic tubules are present in the interstitial cells and cnidoblasts of hydra. They are referred to here as "microtubules." These tubular elements have an outside diameter of 180 A and an inside diameter of 80 A. By difference, the membranous wall is estimated to be 50 A thick. The maximum length of the microtubules cannot be determined from thin sections but is known to exceed 1.5 µ. In the interstitial cells the microtubules are found in the intercellular bridges, free in the cytoplasm and in association with the centrioles. In the cnidoblast they form a framework around the developing nematocyst and in late stages are related to the cnidocil forming a tight skein in the basal part of the cell. Especially in this cell, confluence of microtubules with small spherical vesicles of the Golgi complex has been observed. It is proposed that these tubules function in the transport of water, ions, or small molecules. PMID:14079495

  19. Cellulose-Microtubule Uncoupling Proteins Prevent Lateral Displacement of Microtubules during Cellulose Synthesis in Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Liu, Zengyu; Schneider, Rene; Kesten, Christopher; Zhang, Yi; Somssich, Marc; Zhang, Youjun; Fernie, Alisdair R; Persson, Staffan

    2016-08-08

    Cellulose is the most abundant biopolymer on Earth and is the major contributor to plant morphogenesis. Cellulose is synthesized by plasma membrane-localized cellulose synthase complexes (CSCs). Nascent cellulose microfibrils become entangled in the cell wall, and further catalysis therefore drives the CSC forward through the membrane: a process guided by cortical microtubules via the protein CSI1/POM2. Still, it is unclear how the microtubules can withstand the forces generated by the motile CSCs to effectively direct CSC movement. Here, we identified a family of microtubule-associated proteins, the cellulose synthase-microtubule uncouplings (CMUs), that located as static puncta along cortical microtubules. Functional disruption of the CMUs caused lateral microtubule displacement and compromised microtubule-based guidance of CSC movement. CSCs that traversed the microtubules interacted with the microtubules via CSI1/POM2, which prompted the lateral microtubule displacement. Hence, we have revealed how microtubules can withstand the propulsion of the CSCs during cellulose biosynthesis and thus sustain anisotropic plant cell growth.

  20. Visualizing individual microtubules by bright field microscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gutiérrez-Medina, Braulio; Block, Steven M.

    2010-11-01

    Microtubules are slender (˜25 nm diameter), filamentous polymers involved in cellular structure and organization. Individual microtubules have been visualized via fluorescence imaging of dye-labeled tubulin subunits and by video-enhanced, differential interference-contrast microscopy of unlabeled polymers using sensitive CCD cameras. We demonstrate the imaging of unstained microtubules using a microscope with conventional bright field optics in conjunction with a webcam-type camera and a light-emitting diode illuminator. The light scattered by microtubules is image-processed to remove the background, reduce noise, and enhance contrast. The setup is based on a commercial microscope with a minimal set of inexpensive components, suitable for implementation in a student laboratory. We show how this approach can be used in a demonstration motility assay, tracking the gliding motions of microtubules driven by the motor protein kinesin.

  1. Microtubule plus-end tracking proteins and their roles in cell division.

    PubMed

    Ferreira, Jorge G; Pereira, Ana L; Maiato, Helder

    2014-01-01

    Microtubules are cellular components that are required for a variety of essential processes such as cell motility, mitosis, and intracellular transport. This is possible because of the inherent dynamic properties of microtubules. Many of these properties are tightly regulated by a number of microtubule plus-end-binding proteins or +TIPs. These proteins recognize the distal end of microtubules and are thus in the right context to control microtubule dynamics. In this review, we address how microtubule dynamics are regulated by different +TIP families, focusing on how functionally diverse +TIPs spatially and temporally regulate microtubule dynamics during animal cell division.

  2. Organelles are transported on sliding microtubules in Reticulomyxa.

    PubMed

    Orokos, D D; Cole, R W; Travis, J L

    2000-12-01

    Organelles and plasma membrane domains appear to be transported along Reticulomyxa's microtubule cytoskeleton. Previously we demonstrated that organelle and cell surface transport share the same enzymatic properties and suggested that both are powered by the same cytoplasmic dynein. Motility analysis in Reticulomyxa is complicated by the fact that the microtubules also are motile and appear to "slide" bidirectionally throughout the network. We have utilized laser ablation to address this frame-of-reference problem as to how each transport component (microtubule sliding vs. organelle translocations) contributes to reactivated bidirectional translocation of organelles along the microtubule cytoskeleton. Laser ablation was used to cut microtubule bundles from lysed networks into 4-15-microm segments. After examining these reactivated cut fragments, it appears that the majority of organelles did not move relative to microtubule fragments, but remained attached to microtubules and moved as the microtubules slid. Microtubule sliding stops after 1-2 min and cannot be reactivated even when perfused with fresh ATP. Furthermore, once sliding stops, organelle transport also stops. Our findings indicate that the majority of Reticulomyxa pseudopodial organelles do not move along the surface of the microtubules, rather it is the sliding of the microtubules to which they are attached that moves them.

  3. Microtubule Dynamics Control Tail Retraction in Migrating Vascular Endothelial Cells†

    PubMed Central

    Ganguly, Anutosh; Yang, Hailing; Zhang, Hong; Cabral, Fernando; Patel, Kamala D.

    2014-01-01

    Drugs that target microtubules are potent inhibitors of angiogenesis but their mechanism of action is not well understood. To explore this, we treated human umbilical vein endothelial cells with paclitaxel, vinblastine, and colchicine and measured the effects on microtubule dynamics and cell motility. In general, lower drug concentrations suppressed microtubule dynamics and inhibited cell migration whereas higher concentrations were needed to inhibit cell division; but, surprisingly, large drug-dependent differences were seen in the relative concentrations needed to inhibit these two processes. Suppression of microtubule dynamics did not significantly affect excursions of lamellipodia away from the nucleus or prevent cells from elongating; but, it did inhibit retraction of the trailing edges that are normally enriched in dynamic microtubules, thereby limiting cell locomotion. Complete removal of microtubules with a high vinblastine concentration caused a loss of polarity that resulted in roundish rather than elongated cells, rapid but non-directional membrane activity, and little cell movement. The results are consistent with a model in which more static microtubules stabilize the leading edge of migrating cells while more dynamic microtubules locate to the rear where they can remodel and allow tail retraction. Suppressing microtubule dynamics interferes with tail retraction, but removal of microtubules destroys the asymmetry needed for cell elongation and directional motility. The prediction that suppressing microtubule dynamics might be sufficient to prevent angiogenesis was supported by showing that low concentrations of paclitaxel could prevent the formation of capillary-like structures in an in vitro tube formation assay. PMID:24107446

  4. Preparation of Segmented Microtubules to Study Motions Driven by the Disassembling Microtubule Ends

    PubMed Central

    Volkov, Vladimir A.; Zaytsev, Anatoly V.; Grishchuk, Ekaterina L.

    2014-01-01

    Microtubule depolymerization can provide force to transport different protein complexes and protein-coated beads in vitro. The underlying mechanisms are thought to play a vital role in the microtubule-dependent chromosome motions during cell division, but the relevant proteins and their exact roles are ill-defined. Thus, there is a growing need to develop assays with which to study such motility in vitro using purified components and defined biochemical milieu. Microtubules, however, are inherently unstable polymers; their switching between growth and shortening is stochastic and difficult to control. The protocols we describe here take advantage of the segmented microtubules that are made with the photoablatable stabilizing caps. Depolymerization of such segmented microtubules can be triggered with high temporal and spatial resolution, thereby assisting studies of motility at the disassembling microtubule ends. This technique can be used to carry out a quantitative analysis of the number of molecules in the fluorescently-labeled protein complexes, which move processively with dynamic microtubule ends. To optimize a signal-to-noise ratio in this and other quantitative fluorescent assays, coverslips should be treated to reduce nonspecific absorption of soluble fluorescently-labeled proteins. Detailed protocols are provided to take into account the unevenness of fluorescent illumination, and determine the intensity of a single fluorophore using equidistant Gaussian fit. Finally, we describe the use of segmented microtubules to study microtubule-dependent motions of the protein-coated microbeads, providing insights into the ability of different motor and nonmotor proteins to couple microtubule depolymerization to processive cargo motion. PMID:24686554

  5. Axoneme Structure from Motile Cilia.

    PubMed

    Ishikawa, Takashi

    2017-01-03

    The axoneme is the main extracellular part of cilia and flagella in eukaryotes. It consists of a microtubule cytoskeleton, which normally comprises nine doublets. In motile cilia, dynein ATPase motor proteins generate sliding motions between adjacent microtubules, which are integrated into a well-orchestrated beating or rotational motion. In primary cilia, there are a number of sensory proteins functioning on membranes surrounding the axoneme. In both cases, as the study of proteomics has elucidated, hundreds of proteins exist in this compartmentalized biomolecular system. In this article, we review the recent progress of structural studies of the axoneme and its components using electron microscopy and X-ray crystallography, mainly focusing on motile cilia. Structural biology presents snapshots (but not live imaging) of dynamic structural change and gives insights into the force generation mechanism of dynein, ciliary bending mechanism, ciliogenesis, and evolution of the axoneme.

  6. Statistical physical models of cellular motility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Banigan, Edward J.

    Cellular motility is required for a wide range of biological behaviors and functions, and the topic poses a number of interesting physical questions. In this work, we construct and analyze models of various aspects of cellular motility using tools and ideas from statistical physics. We begin with a Brownian dynamics model for actin-polymerization-driven motility, which is responsible for cell crawling and "rocketing" motility of pathogens. Within this model, we explore the robustness of self-diffusiophoresis, which is a general mechanism of motility. Using this mechanism, an object such as a cell catalyzes a reaction that generates a steady-state concentration gradient that propels the object in a particular direction. We then apply these ideas to a model for depolymerization-driven motility during bacterial chromosome segregation. We find that depolymerization and protein-protein binding interactions alone are sufficient to robustly pull a chromosome, even against large loads. Next, we investigate how forces and kinetics interact during eukaryotic mitosis with a many-microtubule model. Microtubules exert forces on chromosomes, but since individual microtubules grow and shrink in a force-dependent way, these forces lead to bistable collective microtubule dynamics, which provides a mechanism for chromosome oscillations and microtubule-based tension sensing. Finally, we explore kinematic aspects of cell motility in the context of the immune system. We develop quantitative methods for analyzing cell migration statistics collected during imaging experiments. We find that during chronic infection in the brain, T cells run and pause stochastically, following the statistics of a generalized Levy walk. These statistics may contribute to immune function by mimicking an evolutionarily conserved efficient search strategy. Additionally, we find that naive T cells migrating in lymph nodes also obey non-Gaussian statistics. Altogether, our work demonstrates how physical

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2000-01-01

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

  8. Microtubule-dependent control of cell shape and pseudopodial activity is inhibited by the antibody to kinesin motor domain

    PubMed Central

    1993-01-01

    One of the major functions of cytoplasmic microtubules is their involvement in maintenance of asymmetric cell shape. Microtubules were considered to perform this function working as rigid structural elements. At the same time, microtubules play a critical role in intracellular organelle transport, and this fact raises the possibility that the involvement of microtubules in maintenance of cell shape may be mediated by directed transport of certain cellular components to a limited area of the cell surface (e.g., to the leading edge) rather than by their functioning as a mechanical support. To test this hypothesis we microinjected cultured human fibroblasts with the antibody (called HD antibody) raised against kinesin motor domain highly conserved among the different members of kinesin superfamily. As was shown before this antibody inhibits kinesin-dependent microtubule gliding in vitro and interferes with a number of microtubule-dependent transport processes in living cells. Preimmune IgG fraction was used for control experiments. Injections of fibroblasts with HD antibody but not with preimmune IgG significantly reduced their asymmetry, resulting in loss of long processes and elongated cell shape. In addition, antibody injection suppressed pseudopodial activity at the leading edge of fibroblasts moving into an experimentally made wound. Analysis of membrane organelle distribution showed that kinesin antibody induced clustering of mitochondria in perinuclear region and their withdrawal from peripheral parts of the cytoplasm. HD antibody does not affect either density or distribution of cytoplasmic microtubules. The results of our experiments show that many changes of phenotype induced in cells by microtubule-depolymerizing agents can be mimicked by the inhibition of motor proteins, and therefore microtubule functions in maintaining of the cell shape and polarity are mediated by motor proteins rather than by being provided by rigidity of tubulin polymer itself. PMID

  9. Bidirectional motility of the fission yeast kinesin-5, Cut7

    SciTech Connect

    Edamatsu, Masaki

    2014-03-28

    Highlights: • Motile properties of Cut7 (fission yeast kinesin-5) were studied for the first time. • Half-length Cut7 moved toward plus-end direction of microtubule. • Full-length Cut7 moved toward minus-end direction of microtubule. • N- and C-terminal microtubule binding sites did not switch the motile direction. - Abstract: Kinesin-5 is a homotetrameric motor with its motor domain at the N-terminus. Kinesin-5 crosslinks microtubules and functions in separating spindle poles during mitosis. In this study, the motile properties of Cut7, fission yeast kinesin-5, were examined for the first time. In in vitro motility assays, full-length Cut7 moved toward minus-end of microtubules, but the N-terminal half of Cut7 moved toward the opposite direction. Furthermore, additional truncated constructs lacking the N-terminal or C-terminal regions, but still contained the motor domain, did not switch the motile direction. These indicated that Cut7 was a bidirectional motor, and microtubule binding regions at the N-terminus and C-terminus were not involved in its directionality.

  10. Role of the microtubule cytoskeleton in gravisensing Chara rhizoids.

    PubMed

    Braun, M; Sievers, A

    1994-04-01

    The arrangement of the microtubule cytoskeleton in tip-growing and gravisensing Chara rhizoids has been documented by immunofluorescence microscopy. Predominantly axially oriented undulating bundles of cortical microtubules were found in the basal zone of the rhizoids and colocalized with the microfilament bundles underlying the cytoplasmic streaming. Microtubules penetrate the subapical zone, forming a three-dimensional network that envelops the nucleus and organelles. Microtubules are present up to 5 to 10 microns basal from the apical cytoplasmic region containing the statoliths. No microtubules were found in the apical zone of the rhizoid which is the site of tip growth and gravitropism. Depolymerization of microtubules by application of oryzalin does not affect cytoplasmic streaming and gravitropic growth until the relatively stationary and polarly organized apical and subapical cytoplasm is converted into streaming cytoplasm. When the statoliths and the apical cytoplasm are included in the cytoplasmic streaming, tip growth and gravitropism are stopped. Oryzalin-induced disruption of the microtubule cytoskeleton also results in a rearrangement of the dense network of apical and subapical microfilaments into thicker bundles, whereas disruption of the microfilament cytoskeleton by cytochalasin D had no effect on the organization of the microtubule cytoskeleton. It is, therefore, concluded that the arrangement of microtubules is essential for the polar cytoplasmic zonation and the functionally polar organization of the actin cytoskeleton which is responsible for the motile processes in rhizoids. Microtubules are not involved in the primary events of gravitropism in Chara rhizoids.

  11. Microtubule doublets are double-track railways for intraflagellar transport trains.

    PubMed

    Stepanek, Ludek; Pigino, Gaia

    2016-05-06

    The cilium is a large macromolecular machine that is vital for motility, signaling, and sensing in most eukaryotic cells. Its conserved core structure, the axoneme, contains nine microtubule doublets, each comprising a full A-microtubule and an incomplete B-microtubule. However, thus far, the function of this doublet geometry has not been understood. We developed a time-resolved correlative fluorescence and three-dimensional electron microscopy approach to investigate the dynamics of intraflagellar transport (IFT) trains, which carry ciliary building blocks along microtubules during the assembly and disassembly of the cilium. Using this method, we showed that each microtubule doublet is used as a bidirectional double-track railway: Anterograde IFT trains move along B-microtubules, and retrograde trains move along A-microtubules. Thus, the microtubule doublet geometry provides direction-specific rails to coordinate bidirectional transport of ciliary components.

  12. Tensile stress stimulates microtubule outgrowth in living cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kaverina, Irina; Krylyshkina, Olga; Beningo, Karen; Anderson, Kurt; Wang, Yu-Li; Small, J. Victor

    2002-01-01

    Cell motility is driven by the sum of asymmetric traction forces exerted on the substrate through adhesion foci that interface with the actin cytoskeleton. Establishment of this asymmetry involves microtubules, which exert a destabilising effect on adhesion foci via targeting events. Here, we demonstrate the existence of a mechano-sensing mechanism that signals microtubule polymerisation and guidance of the microtubules towards adhesion sites under increased stress. Stress was applied either by manipulating the body of cells moving on glass with a microneedle or by stretching a flexible substrate that cells were migrating on. We propose a model for this mechano-sensing phenomenon whereby microtubule polymerisation is stimulated and guided through the interaction of a microtubule tip complex with actin filaments under tension.

  13. A study of microtubule dipole lattices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nandi, Shubhendu

    Microtubules are cytoskeletal protein polymers orchestrating a host of important cellular functions including, but not limited to, cell support, cell division, cell motility and cell transport. In this thesis, we construct a toy-model of the microtubule lattice composed of vector Ising spins representing tubulin molecules, the building block of microtubules. Nearest-neighbor and next-to-nearest neighbor interactions are considered within an anisotropic dielectric medium. As a consequence of the helical topology, we observe that certain spin orientations render the lattice frustrated with nearest neighbor ferroelectric and next-to-nearest neighbor antiferroelectric bonds. Under these conditions, the lattice displays the remarkable property of stabilizing certain spin patterns that are robust to thermal fluctuations. We model this behavior in the framework of a generalized Ising model known as the J1 - J2 model and theoretically determine the set of stable patterns. Employing Monte-Carlo methods, we demonstrate the stability of such patterns in the microtubule lattice at human physiological temperatures. This suggests a novel biological mechanism for storing information in living organisms, whereby the tubulin spin (dipole moment) states become information bits and information gets stored in microtubules in a way that is robust to thermal fluctuations.

  14. Learn About GI Motility

    MedlinePlus

    ... Disorders of the Large Intestine Disorders of the Pelvic Floor Motility Testing Personal Stories Contact About GI Motility ... Disorders of the Large Intestine Disorders of the Pelvic Floor Motility Testing Personal Stories Contact About GI Motility ...

  15. About GI Motility

    MedlinePlus

    ... Disorders of the Large Intestine Disorders of the Pelvic Floor Motility Testing Personal Stories Contact About GI Motility ... Disorders of the Large Intestine Disorders of the Pelvic Floor Motility Testing Personal Stories Contact About GI Motility ...

  16. Targeting Microtubules for Wound Repair

    PubMed Central

    Charafeddine, Rabab A.; Nosanchuk, Joshua D.; Sharp, David J.

    2016-01-01

    Significance: Fast and seamless healing is essential for both deep and chronic wounds to restore the skin and protect the body from harmful pathogens. Thus, finding new targets that can both expedite and enhance the repair process without altering the upstream signaling milieu and causing serious side effects can improve the way we treat wounds. Since cell migration is key during the different stages of wound healing, it presents an ideal process and intracellular structural machineries to target. Recent Advances and Critical Issues: The microtubule (MT) cytoskeleton is rising as an important structural and functional regulator of wound healing. MTs have been reported to play different roles in the migration of the various cell types involved in wound healing. Specific microtubule regulatory proteins (MRPs) can be targeted to alter a section or subtype of the MT cytoskeleton and boost or hinder cell motility. However, inhibiting intracellular components can be challenging in vivo, especially using unstable molecules, such as small interfering RNA. Nanoparticles can be used to protect these unstable molecules and topically deliver them to the wound. Utilizing this approach, we recently showed that fidgetin-like 2, an uncharacterized MRP, can be targeted to enhance cell migration and wound healing. Future Directions: To harness the full potential of the current MRP therapeutic targets, studies should test them with different delivery platforms, dosages, and skin models. Screening for new MT effectors that boost cell migration in vivo would also help find new targets for skin repair. PMID:27785378

  17. Microtubules, Tubulins and Associated Proteins.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Raxworthy, Michael J.

    1988-01-01

    Reviews much of what is known about microtubules, which are biopolymers consisting predominantly of subunits of the globular protein, tubulin. Describes the functions of microtubules, their structure and assembly, microtube associated proteins, and microtubule-disrupting agents. (TW)

  18. Selective adhesion of functional microtubules to patterned silane surfaces.

    PubMed Central

    Turner, D C; Chang, C; Fang, K; Brandow, S L; Murphy, D B

    1995-01-01

    We show that microtubule polymers can be immobilized selectively on lithographically patterned silane surfaces while retaining their native properties. Silane films were chemisorbed on polished silicon wafers or glass coverslips and patterned using a deep UV lithographic process developed at the Naval Research Laboratory. Hydrocarbon and fluorocarbon alkyl silanes, as well as amino and thiol terminal alkyl silanes, were investigated as substrates for microtubule adhesion with retention of biological activity. Microtubules were found to adhere strongly to amine terminal silanes while retaining the ability to act as substrates for the molecular motor protein kinesin. Aminosilane patterns with linewidths varying from 1 to 50 microns were produced lithographically and used to produce patterns of selectively adhered microtubules. Microtubules were partially aligned on the patterned lines by performing the immobilization in a fluid flow field. Patterns were imaged with atomic force microscopy and differential interference contrast microscopy. Motility assays were carried out using kinesin-coated beads and observed with differential interference contrast microscopy. Kinesin bead movement on the patterned microtubules was comparable to movement on microtubule control surfaces. Images FIGURE 1 FIGURE 2 FIGURE 3 FIGURE 4 PMID:8599684

  19. Effects of colchicine, vinblastine and nocodazole on polarity, motility, chemotaxis and cAMP levels of human polymorphonuclear leukocytes.

    PubMed

    Keller, H U; Naef, A; Zimmermann, A

    1984-07-01

    We present evidence for intrinsic polymorphonuclear leukocyte (PMN) polarity manifested in presence of microtubule-disrupting drugs. Polarization in response to colchicine correlated with the known dose-dependent effects of this drug on microtubule disassembly. The response to 10(-5) M colchicine, 10(-5) M vinblastine and 10(-6) M nocodazole was associated with stimulated motility and random locomotion. Responses elicited by microtubule-disrupting drugs differed from f-Met-Leu-Phe (fMLP)-induced polarization by functional and morphological criteria. Polarization, motility and orthokinesis responses were much weaker. Furthermore, ruffling was almost absent in PMNs polarized in response to colchicine, vinblastine or nocodazole. The response was inhibited by cytochalasin B, indicating that it is microfilament-dependent. We suggest that microtubule-disrupting drugs induce motility via structural changes in the cytoskeleton which act as signals for the motor apparatus. The intrinsic polarity manifested in the presence of microtubule-disrupting drugs could be reversed by an extracellular chemotactic gradient. Stimulated locomotion and motility in response to microtubule-disrupting drugs was only observed with initially spherical PMNs but not with initially motile cells. The findings provide an explanation for the numerous conflicting statements on the chemokinetic activities of these drugs. The role of cAMP in stimulated polarization and motility has been studied. Colchicine, vinblastine and nocodazole elicited a transient elevation of cAMP levels within 1 min of stimulation. cAMP elevation and stimulated motility were not quantitatively correlated.

  20. Swimming with protists: perception, motility and flagellum assembly.

    PubMed

    Ginger, Michael L; Portman, Neil; McKean, Paul G

    2008-11-01

    In unicellular and multicellular eukaryotes, fast cell motility and rapid movement of material over cell surfaces are often mediated by ciliary or flagellar beating. The conserved defining structure in most motile cilia and flagella is the '9+2' microtubule axoneme. Our general understanding of flagellum assembly and the regulation of flagellar motility has been led by results from seminal studies of flagellate protozoa and algae. Here we review recent work relating to various aspects of protist physiology and cell biology. In particular, we discuss energy metabolism in eukaryotic flagella, modifications to the canonical assembly pathway and flagellum function in parasite virulence.

  1. A mathematical model of stress generation in microtubule pair interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fang, Fang; Betterton, Meredith; Shelley, Michael

    2014-11-01

    Microtubules and motor proteins are basic ingredients in many cellular structures and of new biosynthetic ``active'' suspensions. The interaction of microtubules with their surrounding fluid medium depends fundamentally upon the force generation afforded them through cross-linking motile motor proteins. Here we develop a simple mathematical model, based on the statistical mechanics, motor proteins binding and unbinding, to study the generation of active fluid stresses. We study the role and contributions of ``polarity sorting'' and ``tether'' relaxation on the generation of intrinsic, destabilizing stresses.

  2. Inhibition of microtubule dynamics impedes repair of kidney ischemia/reperfusion injury and increases fibrosis

    PubMed Central

    Han, Sang Jun; Kim, Ji-Hyeon; Kim, Jee In; Park, Kwon Moo

    2016-01-01

    The microtubule cytoskeleton is composed of α-tubulin and β-tubulin heterodimers, and it serves to regulate the shape, motility, and division of a cell. Post-translational modifications including acetylation are closely associated with the functional aspects of the microtubule, involving in a number of pathological diseases. However, the role of microtubule acetylation in acute kidney injury (AKI) and progression of AKI to chronic kidney disease have yet to be understood. In this study, ischemia/reperfusion (I/R), a major cause of AKI, resulted in deacetylation of the microtubules with a decrease in α-tubulin acetyltransferase 1 (α-TAT1). Paclitaxel (taxol), an agent that stabilizes microtubules by tubulin acetylation, treatment during the recovery phase following I/R injury inhibited tubular cell proliferation, impaired renal functional recovery, and worsened fibrosis. Taxol induced α-tubulin acetylation and post-I/R cell cycle arrest. Taxol aggregated the microtubule in the cytoplasm, resulting in suppression of microtubule dynamics. Our studies have demonstrated for the first time that I/R induced deacetylation of the microtubules, and that inhibition of microtubule dynamics retarded repair of injured tubular epithelial cells leading to an acceleration of fibrosis. This suggests that microtubule dynamics plays an important role in the processes of repair and fibrosis after AKI. PMID:27270990

  3. Stabilizing versus Destabilizing the Microtubules: A Double-Edge Sword for an Effective Cancer Treatment Option?

    PubMed Central

    Fanale, Daniele; Bronte, Giuseppe; Passiglia, Francesco; Calò, Valentina; Castiglia, Marta; Di Piazza, Florinda; Barraco, Nadia; Cangemi, Antonina; Catarella, Maria Teresa; Insalaco, Lavinia; Listì, Angela; Maragliano, Rossella; Massihnia, Daniela; Perez, Alessandro; Toia, Francesca; Cicero, Giuseppe; Bazan, Viviana

    2015-01-01

    Microtubules are dynamic and structural cellular components involved in several cell functions, including cell shape, motility, and intracellular trafficking. In proliferating cells, they are essential components in the division process through the formation of the mitotic spindle. As a result of these functions, tubulin and microtubules are targets for anticancer agents. Microtubule-targeting agents can be divided into two groups: microtubule-stabilizing, and microtubule-destabilizing agents. The former bind to the tubulin polymer and stabilize microtubules, while the latter bind to the tubulin dimers and destabilize microtubules. Alteration of tubulin-microtubule equilibrium determines the disruption of the mitotic spindle, halting the cell cycle at the metaphase-anaphase transition and, eventually, resulting in cell death. Clinical application of earlier microtubule inhibitors, however, unfortunately showed several limits, such as neurological and bone marrow toxicity and the emergence of drug-resistant tumor cells. Here we review several natural and synthetic microtubule-targeting agents, which showed antitumor activity and increased efficacy in comparison to traditional drugs in various preclinical and clinical studies. Cryptophycins, combretastatins, ombrabulin, soblidotin, D-24851, epothilones and discodermolide were used in clinical trials. Some of them showed antiangiogenic and antivascular activity and others showed the ability to overcome multidrug resistance, supporting their possible use in chemotherapy. PMID:26484003

  4. Microtubule acetylation promotes kinesin-1 binding and transport.

    PubMed

    Reed, Nathan A; Cai, Dawen; Blasius, T Lynne; Jih, Gloria T; Meyhofer, Edgar; Gaertig, Jacek; Verhey, Kristen J

    2006-11-07

    Long-distance intracellular delivery is driven by kinesin and dynein motor proteins that ferry cargoes along microtubule tracks . Current models postulate that directional trafficking is governed by known biophysical properties of these motors-kinesins generally move to the plus ends of microtubules in the cell periphery, whereas cytoplasmic dynein moves to the minus ends in the cell center. However, these models are insufficient to explain how polarized protein trafficking to subcellular domains is accomplished. We show that the kinesin-1 cargo protein JNK-interacting protein 1 (JIP1) is localized to only a subset of neurites in cultured neuronal cells. The mechanism of polarized trafficking appears to involve the preferential recognition of microtubules containing specific posttranslational modifications (PTMs) by the kinesin-1 motor domain. Using a genetic approach to eliminate specific PTMs, we show that the loss of a single modification, alpha-tubulin acetylation at Lys-40, influences the binding and motility of kinesin-1 in vitro. In addition, pharmacological treatments that increase microtubule acetylation cause a redirection of kinesin-1 transport of JIP1 to nearly all neurite tips in vivo. These results suggest that microtubule PTMs are important markers of distinct microtubule populations and that they act to control motor-protein trafficking.

  5. BORC Functions Upstream of Kinesins 1 and 3 to Coordinate Regional Movement of Lysosomes Along Different Microtubule Tracks

    PubMed Central

    Guardia, Carlos M.; Farías, Ginny G.; Jia, Rui; Pu, Jing; Bonifacino, Juan S.

    2016-01-01

    Summary The multiple functions of lysosomes are critically dependent on their ability to undergo bidirectional movement along microtubules between the center and the periphery of the cell. Centrifugal and centripetal movement of lysosomes is mediated by kinesin and dynein motors, respectively. We recently described a multisubunit complex named BORC that recruits the small GTPase Arl8 to lysosomes to promote their kinesin-dependent movement toward the cell periphery. Here we show that BORC and Arl8 function upstream of two structurally distinct kinesin types: kinesin-1 (KIF5B) and kinesin-3 (KIF1Bβ and KIF1A). Remarkably, KIF5B preferentially moves lysosomes on perinuclear tracks enriched in acetylated α-tubulin, whereas KIF1Bβ and KIF1A drive lysosome movement on more rectilinear, peripheral tracks enriched in tyrosinated α-tubulin. These findings establish BORC as a master regulator of lysosome positioning through coupling to different kinesins and microtubule tracks. Common regulation by BORC enables coordinate control of lysosome movement in different regions of the cell. PMID:27851960

  6. BLD10/CEP135 is a microtubule-associated protein that controls the formation of the flagellum central microtubule pair.

    PubMed

    Carvalho-Santos, Zita; Machado, Pedro; Alvarez-Martins, Inês; Gouveia, Susana M; Jana, Swadhin C; Duarte, Paulo; Amado, Tiago; Branco, Pedro; Freitas, Micael C; Silva, Sara T N; Antony, Claude; Bandeiras, Tiago M; Bettencourt-Dias, Mónica

    2012-08-14

    Cilia and flagella are involved in a variety of processes and human diseases, including ciliopathies and sterility. Their motility is often controlled by a central microtubule (MT) pair localized within the ciliary MT-based skeleton, the axoneme. We characterized the formation of the motility apparatus in detail in Drosophila spermatogenesis. We show that assembly of the central MT pair starts prior to the meiotic divisions, with nucleation of a singlet MT within the basal body of a small cilium, and that the second MT of the pair only assembles much later, upon flagella formation. BLD10/CEP135, a conserved player in centriole and flagella biogenesis, can bind and stabilize MTs and is required for the early steps of central MT pair formation. This work describes a genetically tractable system to study motile cilia formation and provides an explanation for BLD10/CEP135's role in assembling highly stable MT-based structures, such as motile axonemes and centrioles.

  7. Cytoplasmic streaming in Drosophila oocytes varies with kinesin activity and correlates with the microtubule cytoskeleton architecture.

    PubMed

    Ganguly, Sujoy; Williams, Lucy S; Palacios, Isabel M; Goldstein, Raymond E

    2012-09-18

    Cells can localize molecules asymmetrically through the combined action of cytoplasmic streaming, which circulates their fluid contents, and specific anchoring mechanisms. Streaming also contributes to the distribution of nutrients and organelles such as chloroplasts in plants, the asymmetric position of the meiotic spindle in mammalian embryos, and the developmental potential of the zygote, yet little is known quantitatively about the relationship between streaming and the motor activity which drives it. Here we use Particle Image Velocimetry to quantify the statistical properties of Kinesin-dependent streaming during mid-oogenesis in Drosophila. We find that streaming can be used to detect subtle changes in Kinesin activity and that the flows reflect the architecture of the microtubule cytoskeleton. Furthermore, based on characterization of the rheology of the cytoplasm in vivo, we establish estimates of the number of Kinesins required to drive the observed streaming. Using this in vivo data as the basis of a model for transport, we suggest that the disordered character of transport at mid-oogenesis, as revealed by streaming, is an important component of the localization dynamics of the body plan determinant oskar mRNA.

  8. FUS inclusions disrupt RNA localization by sequestering kinesin-1 and inhibiting microtubule detyrosination.

    PubMed

    Yasuda, Kyota; Clatterbuck-Soper, Sarah F; Jackrel, Meredith E; Shorter, James; Mili, Stavroula

    2017-04-03

    Cytoplasmic inclusions of the RNA-binding protein fused in sarcoma (FUS) represent one type of membraneless ribonucleoprotein compartment. Formation of FUS inclusions is promoted by amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)-linked mutations, but the cellular functions affected upon inclusion formation are poorly defined. In this study, we find that FUS inclusions lead to the mislocalization of specific RNAs from fibroblast cell protrusions and neuronal axons. This is mediated by recruitment of kinesin-1 mRNA and protein within FUS inclusions, leading to a loss of detyrosinated glutamate (Glu)-microtubules (MTs; Glu-MTs) and an inability to support the localization of RNAs at protrusions. Importantly, dissolution of FUS inclusions using engineered Hsp104 disaggregases, or overexpression of kinesin-1, reverses these effects. We further provide evidence that kinesin-1 affects MT detyrosination not through changes in MT stability, but rather through targeting the tubulin carboxypeptidase enzyme onto specific MTs. Interestingly, other pathological inclusions lead to similar outcomes, but through apparently distinct mechanisms. These results reveal a novel kinesin-dependent mechanism controlling the MT cytoskeleton and identify loss of Glu-MTs and RNA mislocalization as common outcomes of ALS pathogenic mutations.

  9. Downregulation of striatin leads to hyperphosphorylation of MAP2, induces depolymerization of microtubules and inhibits proliferation of HEK293T cells.

    PubMed

    Kaźmierczak-Barańska, Julia; Pęczek, Łukasz; Przygodzka, Patrycja; Cieślak, Marcin J

    2015-01-16

    Microtubules are tubular polymers of α/β-tubulin that are involved in the maintenance of cell shape, motility, and intracellular transport and in the segregation of chromosomes during cell division. Microtubules are dynamic structures, and their assembly is regulated by phosphoproteins called microtubule-associated proteins (MAPs). We propose that striatin, a protein belonging to the striatin family of proteins, is involved in regulation of microtubules. In HEK293T cells, striatin colocalizes with microtubules and stably associates with PP2Ac. Inhibition of striatin expression results in hyperphosphorylation of MAP2 and destabilizes microtubules. Striatin-induced destabilization of microtubules inhibited the proliferation of HEK293T cells and caused the accumulation of cells in the G0/G1 phase of the cell cycle. These results suggest that the PP2A/striatin complex modulates microtubule dynamics by regulating MAP2 phosphorylation.

  10. Zinc Deficiency and Microtubule Function in Prostate Cells

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2006-04-01

    in rat models of zinc deficiency with no reported change between control and deficient conditions [Oteiza et al., 1990]. However, microtubule...polymerization rates were decreased in zinc deficient rats in that study. The authors suggested that zinc deficiency might cause a change in the expression of...spermatozoan motility I. Distribution of iron, zinc and copper in sea urchin spermatozoa . 1972 Exp Cell Res. 70(2):311-316, 1972. Oteiza PI, Hurley LS

  11. BRIDGES BETWEEN MICROTUBULES

    PubMed Central

    McIntosh, J. R.

    1974-01-01

    Bridges between microtubules have been studied with the electron microscope in the axostyle of Saccinobaculus and in various tubule systems of chicken testis, including the helix of tubules surrounding the elongating spermatid nucleus and the flagellum of the sperm tail. In addition to the previously described periodic bridges, evidence is presented that nonperiodic bridges exist between certain tubules. An analysis of axial spacing between adjacent nonperiodic bridges suggests that these structures are attached to periodic binding sites on the microtubule wall, but that not all the binding sites are filled. The bridges appear nonperiodic as a result of random occupancy of some fraction of the periodic sites. The distribution of these binding sites is related to the substructure of the microtubule wall as seen with negative staining and optical diffraction. PMID:4132065

  12. An ELMO2-RhoG-ILK network modulates microtubule dynamics.

    PubMed

    Jackson, Bradley C; Ivanova, Iordanka A; Dagnino, Lina

    2015-07-15

    ELMO2 belongs to a family of scaffold proteins involved in phagocytosis and cell motility. ELMO2 can simultaneously bind integrin-linked kinase (ILK) and RhoG, forming tripartite ERI complexes. These complexes are involved in promoting β1 integrin-dependent directional migration in undifferentiated epidermal keratinocytes. ELMO2 and ILK have also separately been implicated in microtubule regulation at integrin-containing focal adhesions. During differentiation, epidermal keratinocytes cease to express integrins, but ERI complexes persist. Here we show an integrin-independent role of ERI complexes in modulation of microtubule dynamics in differentiated keratinocytes. Depletion of ERI complexes by inactivating the Ilk gene in these cells reduces microtubule growth and increases the frequency of catastrophe. Reciprocally, exogenous expression of ELMO2 or RhoG stabilizes microtubules, but only if ILK is also present. Mechanistically, activation of Rac1 downstream from ERI complexes mediates their effects on microtubule stability. In this pathway, Rac1 serves as a hub to modulate microtubule dynamics through two different routes: 1) phosphorylation and inactivation of the microtubule-destabilizing protein stathmin and 2) phosphorylation and inactivation of GSK-3β, which leads to the activation of CRMP2, promoting microtubule growth. At the cellular level, the absence of ERI species impairs Ca(2+)-mediated formation of adherens junctions, critical to maintaining mechanical integrity in the epidermis. Our findings support a key role for ERI species in integrin-independent stabilization of the microtubule network in differentiated keratinocytes.

  13. SCG10, a microtubule destabilizing factor, stimulates the neurite outgrowth by modulating microtubule dynamics in rat hippocampal primary cultured neurons.

    PubMed

    Morii, Hiroshi; Shiraishi-Yamaguchi, Yoko; Mori, Nozomu

    2006-09-01

    Microtubule dynamics, one of the key elements in neurite outgrowth, is regulated by various regulatory factors to determine the behavior of the neuronal growth cone and to form the specialized neuronal shape. SCG10 is a neuron-specific stathmin protein with a potent microtubule destabilizing factor and is enriched in the growth cones of the developing neurons. We investigated the functional role of SCG10 in neurite outgrowth using rat hippocampal primary cultured neurons. Genetic manipulation of SCG10 using a short-interfering RNA duplex markedly decreased the SCG10 expression level and significantly suppressed neurite outgrowth. This result was confirmed by immunodepletion experiments. On the other hand, the protein transduction of SCG10 using a polyarginine tag stimulated neurite outgrowth. Such manipulation of the SCG10 expression level affected microtubule morphology within the growth cones. A decrease in the SCG10 level converted the morphology to a more stable state, while an increase converted the morphology to a more dynamic state. However, an excess of SCG10 induced neurite retraction due to an excess of microtubule disassembly. These results suggest that SCG10 serves as an important regulatory factor of growth cone motility by enhancing microtubule dynamics, possibly through increasing the catastrophe frequency.

  14. Microtubule dynamics in fish melanophores

    PubMed Central

    1994-01-01

    We have studied the dynamics of microtubules in black tetra (Gymnocorymbus ternetzi) melanophores to test the possible correlation of microtubule stability and intracellular particle transport. X- rhodamine-or caged fluorescein-conjugated tubulin were microinjected and visualized by fluorescence digital imaging using a cooled charge coupled device and videomicroscopy. Microtubule dynamics were evaluated by determining the time course of tubulin incorporation after pulse injection, by time lapse observation, and by quantitation of fluorescence redistribution after photobleaching and photoactivation. The time course experiments showed that the kinetics of incorporation of labeled tubulin into microtubules were similar for cells with aggregated or dispersed pigment with most microtubules becoming fully labeled within 15-20 min after injection. Quantitation by fluorescence redistribution after photobleaching and photoactivation confirmed that microtubule turnover was rapid in both states, t1/2 = 3.5 +/- 1.5 and 6.1 +/- 3.0 min for cells with aggregated and dispersed pigment, respectively. In addition, immunostaining with antibodies specific to posttranslationally modified alpha-tubulin, which is usually enriched in stable microtubules, showed that microtubules composed exclusively of detyrosinated tubulin were absent and microtubules containing acetylated tubulin were sparse. We conclude that the microtubules of melanophores are very dynamic, that their dynamic properties do not depend critically on the state of pigment distribution, and that their stabilization is not a prerequisite for intracellular transport. PMID:8089178

  15. Plant microtubule cytoskeleton complexity: microtubule arrays as fractals.

    PubMed

    Gardiner, John; Overall, Robyn; Marc, Jan

    2012-01-01

    Biological systems are by nature complex and this complexity has been shown to be important in maintaining homeostasis. The plant microtubule cytoskeleton is a highly complex system, with contributing factors through interactions with microtubule-associated proteins (MAPs), expression of multiple tubulin isoforms, and post-translational modification of tubulin and MAPs. Some of this complexity is specific to microtubules, such as a redundancy in factors that regulate microtubule depolymerization. Plant microtubules form partial helical fractals that play a key role in development. It is suggested that, under certain cellular conditions, other categories of microtubule fractals may form including isotropic fractals, triangular fractals, and branched fractals. Helical fractal proteins including coiled-coil and armadillo/beta-catenin repeat proteins and the actin cytoskeleton are important here too. Either alone, or in combination, these fractals may drive much of plant development.

  16. A Structural Basis for How Motile Cilia Beat.

    PubMed

    Satir, Peter; Heuser, Thomas; Sale, Winfield S

    2014-12-01

    The motile cilium is a mechanical wonder, a cellular nanomachine that produces a high-speed beat based on a cycle of bends that move along an axoneme made of 9+2 microtubules. The molecular motors, dyneins, power the ciliary beat. The dyneins are compacted into inner and outer dynein arms, whose activity is highly regulated to produce microtubule sliding and axonemal bending. The switch point hypothesis was developed long ago to account for how sliding in the presence of axonemal radial spoke-central pair interactions causes the ciliary beat. Since then, a new genetic, biochemical, and structural complexity has been discovered, in part, with Chlamydomonas mutants, with high-speed, high-resolution analysis of movement and with cryoelectron tomography. We stand poised on the brink of new discoveries relating to the molecular control of motility that extend and refine our understanding of the basic events underlying the switching of arm activity and of bend formation and propagation.

  17. A Structural Basis for How Motile Cilia Beat

    PubMed Central

    Satir, Peter; Heuser, Thomas; Sale, Winfield S.

    2014-01-01

    The motile cilium is a mechanical wonder, a cellular nanomachine that produces a high-speed beat based on a cycle of bends that move along an axoneme made of 9+2 microtubules. The molecular motors, dyneins, power the ciliary beat. The dyneins are compacted into inner and outer dynein arms, whose activity is highly regulated to produce microtubule sliding and axonemal bending. The switch point hypothesis was developed long ago to account for how sliding in the presence of axonemal radial spoke–central pair interactions causes the ciliary beat. Since then, a new genetic, biochemical, and structural complexity has been discovered, in part, with Chlamydomonas mutants, with high-speed, high-resolution analysis of movement and with cryoelectron tomography. We stand poised on the brink of new discoveries relating to the molecular control of motility that extend and refine our understanding of the basic events underlying the switching of arm activity and of bend formation and propagation. PMID:26955066

  18. Cell Biology: Microtubule Collisions to the Rescue.

    PubMed

    Gardner, Melissa K

    2016-12-19

    The proper regulation of microtubule lengths is fundamental to their cellular function. New work now reports that the collision of a growing microtubule end with another object, such as a microtubule, can contribute to the regulation of microtubule lengths by leaving behind damage that ultimately acts to stabilize the microtubule network.

  19. ErbB2-dependent chemotaxis requires microtubule capture and stabilization coordinated by distinct signaling pathways.

    PubMed

    Benseddik, Khedidja; Sen Nkwe, Nadine; Daou, Pascale; Verdier-Pinard, Pascal; Badache, Ali

    2013-01-01

    Activation of the ErbB2 receptor tyrosine kinase stimulates breast cancer cell migration. Cell migration is a complex process that requires the synchronized reorganization of numerous subcellular structures including cell-to-matrix adhesions, the actin cytoskeleton and microtubules. How the multiple signaling pathways triggered by ErbB2 coordinate, in time and space, the various processes involved in cell motility, is poorly defined. We investigated the mechanism whereby ErbB2 controls microtubules and chemotaxis. We report that activation of ErbB2 increased both cell velocity and directed migration. Impairment of the Cdc42 and RhoA GTPases, but not of Rac1, prevented the chemotactic response. RhoA is a key component of the Memo/ACF7 pathway whereby ErbB2 controls microtubule capture at the leading edge. Upon Memo or ACF7 depletion, microtubules failed to reach the leading edge and cells lost their ability to follow the chemotactic gradient. Constitutive ACF7 targeting to the membrane in Memo-depleted cells reestablished directed migration. ErbB2-mediated activation of phospholipase C gamma (PLCγ) also contributed to cell guidance. We further showed that PLCγ signaling, via classical protein kinases C, and Memo signaling converged towards a single pathway controlling the microtubule capture complex. Finally, inhibiting the PI3K/Akt pathway did not affect microtubule capture, but disturbed microtubule stability, which also resulted in defective chemotaxis. PI3K/Akt-dependent stabilization of microtubules involved repression of GSK3 activity on the one hand and inhibition of the microtubule destabilizing protein, Stathmin, on the other hand. Thus, ErbB2 triggers distinct and complementary pathways that tightly coordinate microtubule capture and microtubule stability to control chemotaxis.

  20. Active diffusion and microtubule-based transport oppose myosin forces to position organelles in cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Congping; Schuster, Martin; Guimaraes, Sofia Cunha; Ashwin, Peter; Schrader, Michael; Metz, Jeremy; Hacker, Christian; Gurr, Sarah Jane; Steinberg, Gero

    2016-06-01

    Even distribution of peroxisomes (POs) and lipid droplets (LDs) is critical to their role in lipid and reactive oxygen species homeostasis. How even distribution is achieved remains elusive, but diffusive motion and directed motility may play a role. Here we show that in the fungus Ustilago maydis ~95% of POs and LDs undergo diffusive motions. These movements require ATP and involve bidirectional early endosome motility, indicating that microtubule-associated membrane trafficking enhances diffusion of organelles. When early endosome transport is abolished, POs and LDs drift slowly towards the growing cell end. This pole-ward drift is facilitated by anterograde delivery of secretory cargo to the cell tip by myosin-5. Modelling reveals that microtubule-based directed transport and active diffusion support distribution, mobility and mixing of POs. In mammalian COS-7 cells, microtubules and F-actin also counteract each other to distribute POs. This highlights the importance of opposing cytoskeletal forces in organelle positioning in eukaryotes.

  1. Active diffusion and microtubule-based transport oppose myosin forces to position organelles in cells

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Congping; Schuster, Martin; Guimaraes, Sofia Cunha; Ashwin, Peter; Schrader, Michael; Metz, Jeremy; Hacker, Christian; Gurr, Sarah Jane; Steinberg, Gero

    2016-01-01

    Even distribution of peroxisomes (POs) and lipid droplets (LDs) is critical to their role in lipid and reactive oxygen species homeostasis. How even distribution is achieved remains elusive, but diffusive motion and directed motility may play a role. Here we show that in the fungus Ustilago maydis ∼95% of POs and LDs undergo diffusive motions. These movements require ATP and involve bidirectional early endosome motility, indicating that microtubule-associated membrane trafficking enhances diffusion of organelles. When early endosome transport is abolished, POs and LDs drift slowly towards the growing cell end. This pole-ward drift is facilitated by anterograde delivery of secretory cargo to the cell tip by myosin-5. Modelling reveals that microtubule-based directed transport and active diffusion support distribution, mobility and mixing of POs. In mammalian COS-7 cells, microtubules and F-actin also counteract each other to distribute POs. This highlights the importance of opposing cytoskeletal forces in organelle positioning in eukaryotes. PMID:27251117

  2. Physical Modeling of Microtubules Network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allain, Pierre; Kervrann, Charles

    2014-10-01

    Microtubules (MT) are highly dynamic tubulin polymers that are involved in many cellular processes such as mitosis, intracellular cell organization and vesicular transport. Nevertheless, the modeling of cytoskeleton and MT dynamics based on physical properties is difficult to achieve. Using the Euler-Bernoulli beam theory, we propose to model the rigidity of microtubules on a physical basis using forces, mass and acceleration. In addition, we link microtubules growth and shrinkage to the presence of molecules (e.g. GTP-tubulin) in the cytosol. The overall model enables linking cytosol to microtubules dynamics in a constant state space thus allowing usage of data assimilation techniques.

  3. Regulation of Eukaryotic Flagellar Motility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mitchell, David R.

    2005-03-01

    The central apparatus is essential for normal eukaryotic flagellar bend propagation as evidenced by the paralysis associated with mutations that prevent central pair (CP) assembly. Interactions between doublet-associated radial spokes and CP projections are thought to modulate spoke-regulated protein kinases and phosphatases on outer doublets, and these enzymes in turn modulate dynein activity. To better understand CP control mechanisms, we determined the three-dimensional structure of the Chlamydomonas reinhardtii CP complex and analyzed CP orientation during formation and propagation of flagellar bending waves. We show that a single CP microtubule, C1, is near the outermost doublet in curved regions of the flagellum, and this orientation is maintained by twists between successive principal and reverse bends. The Chlamydomonas CP is inherently twisted; twists are not induced by bend formation, and do not depend on forces or signals transmitted through spoke-central pair interactions. We hypothesize that CP orientation passively responds to bend formation, and that bend propagation drives rotation of the CP and maintains a constant CP orientation in bends, which in turn permits signal transduction between specific CP projections and specific doublet-associated dyneins through radial spokes. The central pair kinesin, Klp1, although essential for normal motility, is therefore not the motor that drives CP rotation. The CP also acts as a scaffold for enzymes that maintain normal intraflagellar ATP concentration.

  4. Chromosome position at the spindle equator is regulated by chromokinesin and a bipolar microtubule array.

    PubMed

    Takagi, Jun; Itabashi, Takeshi; Suzuki, Kazuya; Ishiwata, Shin'ichi

    2013-09-30

    The chromosome alignment is mediated by polar ejection and poleward forces acting on the chromosome arm and kinetochores, respectively. Although components of the motile machinery such as chromokinesin have been characterized, their dynamics within the spindle is poorly understood. Here we show that a quantum dot (Qdot) binding up to four Xenopus chromokinesin (Xkid) molecules behaved like a nanosize chromosome arm in the meiotic spindle, which is self-organized in cytoplasmic egg extracts. Xkid-Qdots travelled long distances along microtubules by changing several tracks, resulting in their accumulation toward and distribution around the metaphase plate. The analysis indicated that the direction of motion and velocity depend on the distribution of microtubule polarity within the spindle. Thus, this mechanism is governed by chromokinesin motors, which is dependent on symmetrical microtubule orientation that may allow chromosomes to maintain their position around the spindle equator until correct microtubule-kinetochore attachment is established.

  5. Protein Kinase C Activation Promotes Microtubule Advance in Neuronal Growth Cones by Increasing Average Microtubule Growth Lifetimes

    PubMed Central

    Kabir, Nurul; Schaefer, Andrew W.; Nakhost, Arash; Sossin, Wayne S.; Forscher, Paul

    2001-01-01

    We describe a novel mechanism for protein kinase C regulation of axonal microtubule invasion of growth cones. Activation of PKC by phorbol esters resulted in a rapid, robust advance of distal microtubules (MTs) into the F-actin rich peripheral domain of growth cones, where they are normally excluded. In contrast, inhibition of PKC activity by bisindolylmaleimide and related compounds had no perceptible effect on growth cone motility, but completely blocked phorbol ester effects. Significantly, MT advance occurred despite continued retrograde F-actin flow—a process that normally inhibits MT advance. Polymer assembly was necessary for PKC-mediated MT advance since it was highly sensitive to a range of antagonists at concentrations that specifically interfere with microtubule dynamics. Biochemical evidence is presented that PKC activation promotes formation of a highly dynamic MT pool. Direct assessment of microtubule dynamics and translocation using the fluorescent speckle microscopy microtubule marking technique indicates PKC activation results in a nearly twofold increase in the typical lifetime of a MT growth episode, accompanied by a 1.7-fold increase and twofold decrease in rescue and catastrophe frequencies, respectively. No significant effects on instantaneous microtubule growth, shortening, or sliding rates (in either anterograde or retrograde directions) were observed. MTs also spent a greater percentage of time undergoing retrograde transport after PKC activation, despite overall MT advance. These results suggest that regulation of MT assembly by PKC may be an important factor in determining neurite outgrowth and regrowth rates and may play a role in other cellular processes dependent on directed MT advance. PMID:11238458

  6. Physics of protein motility and motor proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kolomeisky, Anatoly B.

    2013-09-01

    Motor proteins are enzymatic molecules that transform chemical energy into mechanical motion and work. They are critically important for supporting various cellular activities and functions. In the last 15 years significant progress in understanding the functioning of motor proteins has been achieved due to revolutionary breakthroughs in single-molecule experimental techniques and strong advances in theoretical modelling. However, microscopic mechanisms of protein motility are still not well explained, and the collective efforts of many scientists are needed in order to solve these complex problems. In this special section the reader will find the latest advances on the difficult road to mapping motor proteins dynamics in various systems. Recent experimental developments have allowed researchers to monitor and to influence the activity of single motor proteins with a high spatial and temporal resolution. It has stimulated significant theoretical efforts to understand the non-equilibrium nature of protein motility phenomena. The latest results from all these advances are presented and discussed in this special section. We would like to thank the scientists from all over the world who have reported their latest research results for this special section. We are also grateful to the staff and editors of Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter for their invaluable help in handling all the administrative and refereeing activities. The field of motor proteins and protein motility is fast moving, and we hope that this collection of articles will be a useful source of information in this highly interdisciplinary area. Physics of protein motility and motor proteins contents Physics of protein motility and motor proteinsAnatoly B Kolomeisky Identification of unique interactions between the flexible linker and the RecA-like domains of DEAD-box helicase Mss116 Yuan Zhang, Mirkó Palla, Andrew Sun and Jung-Chi Liao The load dependence of the physical properties of a molecular motor

  7. Anomalous Flexural Behaviors of Microtubules

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Xiaojing; Zhou, Youhe; Gao, Huajian; Wang, Jizeng

    2012-01-01

    Apparent controversies exist on whether the persistence length of microtubules depends on its contour length. This issue is particularly challenging from a theoretical point of view due to the tubular structure and strongly anisotropic material property of microtubules. Here we adopt a higher order continuum orthotropic thin shell model to study the flexural behavior of microtubules. Our model overcomes some key limitations of a recent study based on a simplified anisotropic shell model and results in a closed-form solution for the contour-length-dependent persistence length of microtubules, with predictions in excellent agreement with experimental measurements. By studying the ratio between their contour and persistence lengths, we find that microtubules with length at ∼1.5 μm show the lowest flexural rigidity, whereas those with length at ∼15 μm show the highest flexural rigidity. This finding may provide an important theoretical basis for understanding the mechanical structure of mitotic spindles during cell division. Further analysis on the buckling of microtubules indicates that the critical buckling load becomes insensitive to the tube length for relatively short microtubules, in drastic contrast to the classical Euler buckling. These rich flexural behaviors of microtubules are of profound implication for many biological functions and biomimetic molecular devices. PMID:22768935

  8. Microtubule dynamics in plant cells.

    PubMed

    Buschmann, Henrik; Sambade, Adrian; Pesquet, Edouard; Calder, Grant; Lloyd, Clive W

    2010-01-01

    This chapter describes some of the choices and unavoidable compromises to be made when studying microtubule dynamics in plant cells. The choice of species still depends very much on the ability to produce transgenic plants and most work has been done in the relatively small cells of Arabidopsis plants or in tobacco BY-2 suspension cells. Fluorescence-tagged microtubule proteins have been used to label entire microtubules, or their plus ends, but there are still few minus-end markers for these acentrosomal cells. Pragmatic decisions have to be made about probes, balancing the efficacy of microtubule labeling against a tendency to overstabilize and bundle the microtubules and even induce helical plant growth. A key limitation in visualizing plant microtubules is the ability to keep plants alive for long periods under the microscope and we describe a biochamber that allows for plant cell growth and development while allowing gas exchange and reducing evaporation. Another major difficulty is the limited fluorescence lifetime and we describe imaging strategies to reduce photobleaching in long-term imaging. We also discuss methods of measuring microtubule dynamics, with emphasis on the behavior of plant-specific microtubule arrays.

  9. Identification and Characterization of a Novel Microtubule-Based Motor Associated with Membranous Organelles in Tobacco Pollen Tubes

    PubMed Central

    Cai, Giampiero; Romagnoli, Silvia; Moscatelli, Alessandra; Ovidi, Elisa; Gambellini, Gabriella; Tiezzi, Antonio; Cresti, Mauro

    2000-01-01

    Pollen tube growth depends on the differential distribution of organelles and vesicles along the tube. The role of microtubules in organelle movement is uncertain, mainly because information at the molecular level is limited. In an effort to understand the molecular basis of microtubule-based movement, we isolated from tobacco pollen tubes polypeptides that cosediment with microtubules in an ATP-dependent manner. Major polypeptides released from microtubules by ATP (ATP-MAPs) had molecular masses of 90, 80, and 41 kD. Several findings indicate that the 90-kD ATP-MAP is a kinesin-related motor: binding of the polypeptide to microtubules was enhanced by the nonhydrolyzable ATP analog AMP-PNP; the 90-kD polypeptide reacted specifically with a peptide antibody directed against a highly conserved region in the motor domain of the kinesin superfamily; purified 90-kD ATP-MAP induced microtubules to glide in motility assays in vitro; and the 90-kD ATP-MAP cofractionated with microtubule-activated ATPase activity. Immunolocalization studies indicated that the 90-kD ATP-MAP binds to organelles associated with microtubules in the cortical region of the pollen tube. These findings suggest that the 90-kD ATP-MAP is a kinesin-related microtubule motor that moves organelles in the cortex of growing pollen tubes. PMID:11006343

  10. A "MICROTUBULE" IN A BACTERIUM

    PubMed Central

    van Iterson, Woutera; Hoeniger, Judith F. M.; van Zanten, Eva Nijman

    1967-01-01

    A study of the anchorage of the flagella in swarmers of Proteus mirabilis led to the incidental observation of microtubules. These microtubules were found in thin sections and in whole mount preparations of cells from which most of the content had been released by osmotic shock before staining negatively with potassium phosphotungstate (PTA). The microtubules are in negatively stained preparations about 200 A wide, i.e. somewhat thicker than the flagella (approximately 130 A). They are thus somewhat thinner than most microtubules recorded for other cells. They are referred to as microtubules because of their smooth cylindrical wall, or cortex, surrounding a hollow core which is readily filled with PTA when stained negatively. Since this is probably the first time that such a structure is described inside a bacterium, we do not know for certain whether it represents a normal cell constituent or an abnormality, for instance of the type of "polysheaths" (16). PMID:10976198

  11. Equimolar heterodimers in microtubules

    PubMed Central

    1982-01-01

    Two equimolar beta chains can be resolved from sea urchin sperm flagellar and scallop gill ciliary tubulins, and from certain brain tubulins as well, using the Triton X-100-acid-urea polyacrylamide gel system commonly used for histone analysis. The beta chains are identified as such from their mobility on urea-free SDS PAGE, from amino acid composition, and from tryptic peptide distribution. Scallop beta chains have almost identical amino acid profiles but they differ by one tryptic peptide. Optimal conditions for beta chain resolution are very species-dependent, with some closely related species showing either maximal or no beta chain separation. In addition, beef brain tubulin on Triton X-100-acid-urea electrophoresis and scallop gill ciliary tubulin upon isoelectric focusing in the presence of SDS show two approximately equimolar alpha chains. These data, indicating equimolar amounts of two potentially different tubulin heterodimers from a variety of microtubule types, support a model for microtubule structure wherein protofilaments consist of alternating heterodimers of two kinds, generating a 16-nm (2-dimer) axial repeat. PMID:7202008

  12. Targeting Toxoplasma Tubules: Tubulin, Microtubules, and Associated Proteins in a Human Pathogen

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Toxoplasma gondii is an obligate intracellular parasite that causes serious opportunistic infections, birth defects, and blindness in humans. Microtubules are critically important components of diverse structures that are used throughout the Toxoplasma life cycle. As in other eukaryotes, spindle microtubules are required for chromosome segregation during replication. Additionally, a set of membrane-associated microtubules is essential for the elongated shape of invasive “zoites,” and motility follows a spiral trajectory that reflects the path of these microtubules. Toxoplasma zoites also construct an intricate, tubulin-based apical structure, termed the conoid, which is important for host cell invasion and associates with proteins typically found in the flagellar apparatus. Last, microgametes specifically construct a microtubule-containing flagellar axoneme in order to fertilize macrogametes, permitting genetic recombination. The specialized roles of these microtubule populations are mediated by distinct sets of associated proteins. This review summarizes our current understanding of the role of tubulin, microtubule populations, and associated proteins in Toxoplasma; these components are used for both novel and broadly conserved processes that are essential for parasite survival. PMID:25380753

  13. Targeting Toxoplasma tubules: tubulin, microtubules, and associated proteins in a human pathogen.

    PubMed

    Morrissette, Naomi

    2015-01-01

    Toxoplasma gondii is an obligate intracellular parasite that causes serious opportunistic infections, birth defects, and blindness in humans. Microtubules are critically important components of diverse structures that are used throughout the Toxoplasma life cycle. As in other eukaryotes, spindle microtubules are required for chromosome segregation during replication. Additionally, a set of membrane-associated microtubules is essential for the elongated shape of invasive "zoites," and motility follows a spiral trajectory that reflects the path of these microtubules. Toxoplasma zoites also construct an intricate, tubulin-based apical structure, termed the conoid, which is important for host cell invasion and associates with proteins typically found in the flagellar apparatus. Last, microgametes specifically construct a microtubule-containing flagellar axoneme in order to fertilize macrogametes, permitting genetic recombination. The specialized roles of these microtubule populations are mediated by distinct sets of associated proteins. This review summarizes our current understanding of the role of tubulin, microtubule populations, and associated proteins in Toxoplasma; these components are used for both novel and broadly conserved processes that are essential for parasite survival.

  14. Mutation of Growth Arrest Specific 8 Reveals a Role in Motile Cilia Function and Human Disease

    PubMed Central

    Lewis, Wesley R.; Malarkey, Erik B.; Tritschler, Douglas; Bower, Raqual; Pasek, Raymond C.; Porath, Jonathan D.; Birket, Susan E.; Saunier, Sophie; Antignac, Corinne; Leigh, Margaret W.; Zariwala, Maimoona A.; Drummond, Iain A.; Parant, John M.; Hildebrandt, Friedhelm; Yoder, Bradley K.

    2016-01-01

    Ciliopathies are genetic disorders arising from dysfunction of microtubule-based cellular appendages called cilia. Different cilia types possess distinct stereotypic microtubule doublet arrangements with non-motile or ‘primary’ cilia having a 9+0 and motile cilia have a 9+2 array of microtubule doublets. Primary cilia are critical sensory and signaling centers needed for normal mammalian development. Defects in their structure/function result in a spectrum of clinical and developmental pathologies including abnormal neural tube and limb patterning. Altered patterning phenotypes in the limb and neural tube are due to perturbations in the hedgehog (Hh) signaling pathway. Motile cilia are important in fluid movement and defects in motility result in chronic respiratory infections, altered left-right asymmetry, and infertility. These features are the hallmarks of Primary Ciliary Dyskinesia (PCD, OMIM 244400). While mutations in several genes are associated with PCD in patients and animal models, the genetic lesion in many cases is unknown. We assessed the in vivo functions of Growth Arrest Specific 8 (GAS8). GAS8 shares strong sequence similarity with the Chlamydomonas Nexin-Dynein Regulatory Complex (NDRC) protein 4 (DRC4) where it is needed for proper flagella motility. In mammalian cells, the GAS8 protein localizes not only to the microtubule axoneme of motile cilia, but also to the base of non-motile cilia. Gas8 was recently implicated in the Hh signaling pathway as a regulator of Smoothened trafficking into the cilium. Here, we generate the first mouse with a Gas8 mutation and show that it causes severe PCD phenotypes; however, there were no overt Hh pathway phenotypes. In addition, we identified two human patients with missense variants in Gas8. Rescue experiments in Chlamydomonas revealed a subtle defect in swim velocity compared to controls. Further experiments using CRISPR/Cas9 homology driven repair (HDR) to generate one of these human missense variants

  15. The kinesin-8 Kip3 scales anaphase spindle length by suppression of midzone microtubule polymerization.

    PubMed

    Rizk, Rania S; Discipio, Katherine A; Proudfoot, Kathleen G; Gupta, Mohan L

    2014-03-17

    Mitotic spindle function is critical for cell division and genomic stability. During anaphase, the elongating spindle physically segregates the sister chromatids. However, the molecular mechanisms that determine the extent of anaphase spindle elongation remain largely unclear. In a screen of yeast mutants with altered spindle length, we identified the kinesin-8 Kip3 as essential to scale spindle length with cell size. Kip3 is a multifunctional motor protein with microtubule depolymerase, plus-end motility, and antiparallel sliding activities. Here we demonstrate that the depolymerase activity is indispensable to control spindle length, whereas the motility and sliding activities are not sufficient. Furthermore, the microtubule-destabilizing activity is required to counteract Stu2/XMAP215-mediated microtubule polymerization so that spindle elongation terminates once spindles reach the appropriate final length. Our data support a model where Kip3 directly suppresses spindle microtubule polymerization, limiting midzone length. As a result, sliding forces within the midzone cannot buckle spindle microtubules, which allows the cell boundary to define the extent of spindle elongation.

  16. Biological Information Processing in Single Microtubules

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2011-08-20

    electronic properties of a single Microtubule Google Mountain view campus, workshop on quantum biology 22 October 2010 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v...Chemists, Tsukuba, Japan March 1-3, (2011) 3. Quantum aspects of microtubule: Direct experimental evidence for the existence of quantum states in...microtubule, Towards a science of consciousness May 2-8 (2011), Sweden 4. Electromagnetic energy of cells and microtubule: how microtubule research will

  17. Laser irradiation of centrosomes in newt eosinophils: evidence of centriole role in motility

    SciTech Connect

    Koonce, M.P.; Cloney, R.A.; Berns, M.W.

    1984-06-01

    Newt eosinophils are motile granulated leukocytes that uniquely display a highly visible centrosomal area. Electron microscope and tubulin antibody fluorescence confirms the presence of centrioles, pericentriolar material, and radiating microtubules within this visible area. Actin antibodies intensely stain the advancing cell edges and tail but only weakly stain pseudopods being withdrawn into the cell. Randomly activated eosinophils follow a roughly consistent direction with an average rate of 22.5 ..mu..m/min. The position of the centrosome is always located between the trailing cell nucleus and advancing cell edge. If the cell extends more than one pseudopod, the one closest to or containing the centrosome is always the one in which motility continues. Laser irradiation of the visible centrosomal area resulted in rapid cell rounding. After several minutes following irradiation, most cells flattened and movement continued. However, postirradiation motility was uncoordinated and directionless, and the rate decreased to an average of 14.5 ..mu..m/min. Electron microscopy and tubulin immunofluorescence indicated that an initial disorganization of microtubules resulted from the laser microirradiations. After several minutes, organized microtubules reappeared, but the centrioles appeared increasingly damaged. The irregularities in motility due to irradiation are probably related to the damaged centrioles. The results presented in this paper suggest that the centrosome is an important structure in controlling the rate and direction of newt eosinophil motility.

  18. Artificial microtubule cytoskeleton construction, manipulation, and modeling via holographic trapping of network nodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bergman, J.; Doval, F.; Vershinin, M.

    2016-09-01

    Cytoskeletal networks are 3D arrangements of filaments whose complex spatial structure contributes significantly to their intracellular functions, e.g. biomechanics and cargo motility. Microtubule networks in cells are a particular challenge for in vitro modeling because they are sparse and possess overall structure and so cannot be approximated experimentally as a random hydrogel. We have used holographic optical trapping to precisely position and hold multiple microtubule filaments in an in vitro assay, where chemical and environmental variables can be carefully controlled. Below we describe the relevant practical details of the approach and demonstrate how our approach can scale to accommodate modeling of molecular motor transport and biomechanics experiments.

  19. In vitro motility from recombinant dynein heavy chain.

    PubMed Central

    Mazumdar, M; Mikami, A; Gee, M A; Vallee, R B

    1996-01-01

    The dyneins are a class of motor protein involved in ciliary and flagellar motility, organelle transport, and chromosome segregation. Because of their large size and subunit complexity, relatively little is known about their mechanisms of force production and regulation. We report here on the expression and analysis of the entire rat cytoplasmic dynein heavy chain (Mr 532,000). Full-length cDNAs were constructed from a series of partial clones and tagged at the C terminus with either a FLAG-epitope tag or a His6-tag. The recombinant polypeptides were expressed either in insect cells by baculovirus infection or in COS-7 cells by transient transfection. The recombinant protein was mostly soluble and showed good microtubule binding. It exhibited a broad sedimentation profile, indicative of the formation of dimers as well as higher order multimers. Good microtubule gliding motility activity was observed in assays of heavy chain expressed in either insect or COS-7 cells. Average microtubule gliding velocities of 1.2-1.8 microm/sec were observed, comparable with the rates determined for calf brain cytoplasmic dynein. These results represent the first indication that recombinant heavy chain alone is capable of force production, and should lead to rapid progress in defining the dynein motor domain. Images Fig. 1 Fig. 2 Fig. 3 PMID:8692854

  20. Microtubule organization during human parthenogenesis.

    PubMed

    Terada, Yukihiro; Hasegawa, Hisataka; Ugajin, Tomohisa; Murakami, Takashi; Yaegashi, Nobuo; Okamura, Kunihiro

    2009-04-01

    In human fertilization, the sperm centrosome plays a crucial role as a microtubule organizing center (MTOC). We studied microtubule organization during human parthenogenesis, which occurs when a human egg undergoes cleavage without a sperm centrosome. Multiple cytoplasmic asters were organized in the human oocyte after parthenogenetic activation, indicating that multiple MTOC are present in the human oocyte cytoplasm and function like a human sperm centrosome during parthenogenesis.

  1. Kar3Vik1, a member of the kinesin-14 superfamily, shows a novel kinesin microtubule binding pattern.

    PubMed

    Rank, Katherine C; Chen, Chun Ju; Cope, Julia; Porche, Ken; Hoenger, Andreas; Gilbert, Susan P; Rayment, Ivan

    2012-06-25

    Kinesin-14 motors generate microtubule minus-end-directed force used in mitosis and meiosis. These motors are dimeric and operate with a nonprocessive powerstroke mechanism, but the role of the second head in motility has been unclear. In Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the Kinesin-14 Kar3 forms a heterodimer with either Vik1 or Cik1. Vik1 contains a motor homology domain that retains microtubule binding properties but lacks a nucleotide binding site. In this case, both heads are implicated in motility. Here, we show through structural determination of a C-terminal heterodimeric Kar3Vik1, electron microscopy, equilibrium binding, and motility that at the start of the cycle, Kar3Vik1 binds to or occludes two αβ-tubulin subunits on adjacent protofilaments. The cycle begins as Vik1 collides with the microtubule followed by Kar3 microtubule association and ADP release, thereby destabilizing the Vik1-microtubule interaction and positioning the motor for the start of the powerstroke. The results indicate that head-head communication is mediated through the adjoining coiled coil.

  2. Microtubules in Bacteria: Ancient Tubulins Build a Five-Protofilament Homolog of the Eukaryotic Cytoskeleton

    PubMed Central

    Pilhofer, Martin; Ladinsky, Mark S.; McDowall, Alasdair W.; Petroni, Giulio; Jensen, Grant J.

    2011-01-01

    Microtubules play crucial roles in cytokinesis, transport, and motility, and are therefore superb targets for anti-cancer drugs. All tubulins evolved from a common ancestor they share with the distantly related bacterial cell division protein FtsZ, but while eukaryotic tubulins evolved into highly conserved microtubule-forming heterodimers, bacterial FtsZ presumably continued to function as single homopolymeric protofilaments as it does today. Microtubules have not previously been found in bacteria, and we lack insight into their evolution from the tubulin/FtsZ ancestor. Using electron cryomicroscopy, here we show that the tubulin homologs BtubA and BtubB form microtubules in bacteria and suggest these be referred to as “bacterial microtubules” (bMTs). bMTs share important features with their eukaryotic counterparts, such as straight protofilaments and similar protofilament interactions. bMTs are composed of only five protofilaments, however, instead of the 13 typical in eukaryotes. These and other results suggest that rather than being derived from modern eukaryotic tubulin, BtubA and BtubB arose from early tubulin intermediates that formed small microtubules. Since we show that bacterial microtubules can be produced in abundance in vitro without chaperones, they should be useful tools for tubulin research and drug screening. PMID:22162949

  3. Improved Plasmids for Fluorescent Protein Tagging of Microtubules in Saccharomyces cerevisiae

    PubMed Central

    Baranowski, Kaitlyn; Lee, Wei-Lih

    2016-01-01

    The ability to fluorescently label microtubules in live cells has enabled numerous studies of motile and mitotic processes. Such studies are particularly useful in budding yeast due to the ease with which they can be genetically manipulated and imaged by live cell fluorescence microscopy. Due to problems associated with fusing genes encoding fluorescent proteins (FPs) to the native a-tubulin (TUB1) gene, the FP-Tub1 fusion is generally integrated into the genome such that the endogenous TUB1 locus is left intact. Although such modifications have no apparent consequences on cell viability, it is unknown if these genome integrated FP-tubulin fusions negatively affect microtubule functions. Thus, a simple, economical, and highly sensitive assay of microtubule function is required. Furthermore, the current plasmids available for generation of FP-Tub1 fusions have not kept pace with the development of improved FPs. Here, we have developed a simple and sensitive assay of microtubule function that is sufficient to identify microtubule defects that were not apparent by fluorescence microscopy or cell growth assays. Using results obtained from this assay, we have engineered a new family of thirty FP-Tub1 plasmids that employ various improved FPs and numerous selectable markers that upon genome integration have no apparent defect on microtubule function. PMID:25711127

  4. Microtubules in Plants

    PubMed Central

    Hashimoto, Takashi

    2015-01-01

    Microtubules (MTs) are highly conserved polar polymers that are key elements of the eukaryotic cytoskeleton and are essential for various cell functions. αβ-tubulin, a heterodimer containing one structural GTP and one hydrolysable and exchangeable GTP, is the building block of MTs and is formed by the sequential action of several molecular chaperones. GTP hydrolysis in the MT lattice is mechanistically coupled with MT growth, thus giving MTs a metastable and dynamic nature. MTs adopt several distinct higher-order organizations that function in cell division and cell morphogenesis. Small molecular weight compounds that bind tubulin are used as herbicides and as research tools to investigate MT functions in plant cells. The de novo formation of MTs in cells requires conserved γ-tubulin-containing complexes and targeting/activating regulatory proteins that contribute to the geometry of MT arrays. Various MT regulators and tubulin modifications control the dynamics and organization of MTs throughout the cell cycle and in response to developmental and environmental cues. Signaling pathways that converge on the regulation of versatile MT functions are being characterized. PMID:26019693

  5. Cortical microtubule rearrangements and cell wall patterning

    PubMed Central

    Oda, Yoshihisa

    2015-01-01

    Plant cortical microtubules, which form a highly ordered array beneath the plasma membrane, play essential roles in determining cell shape and function by directing the arrangement of cellulosic and non-cellulosic compounds on the cell surface. Interphase transverse arrays of cortical microtubules self-organize through their dynamic instability and inter-microtubule interactions, and by branch-form microtubule nucleation and severing. Recent studies revealed that distinct spatial signals including ROP GTPase, cellular geometry, and mechanical stress regulate the behavior of cortical microtubules at the subcellular and supercellular levels, giving rise to dramatic rearrangements in the cortical microtubule array in response to internal and external cues. Increasing evidence indicates that negative regulators of microtubules also contribute to the rearrangement of the cortical microtubule array. In this review, I summarize recent insights into how the rearrangement of the cortical microtubule array leads to proper, flexible cell wall patterning. PMID:25904930

  6. Self-repair promotes microtubule rescue

    PubMed Central

    Gaillard, Jérémie; John, Karin; Blanchoin, Laurent; Théry, Manuel

    2016-01-01

    Summary The dynamic instability of microtubules is characterised by slow growth phases stochastically interrupted by rapid depolymerisations called catastrophes. Rescue events can arrest the depolymerisation and restore microtubule elongation. However the origin of these rescue events remain unexplained. Here we show that microtubule lattice self-repair, in structurally damaged sites, is responsible for the rescue of microtubule growth. Tubulin photo-conversion in cells revealed that free tubulin dimers can incorporate along the shafts of microtubules, especially in regions where microtubules cross each other, form bundles or become bent due to mechanical constraints. These incorporation sites appeared to act as effective rescue sites ensuring microtubule rejuvenation. By securing damaged microtubule growth, the self-repair process supports a mechanosensitive growth by specifically promoting microtubule assembly in regions where they are subjected to physical constraints. PMID:27617929

  7. Dynamic model of the force driving kinesin to move along microtubule-Simulation with a model system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chou, Y. C.; Hsiao, Yi-Feng; To, Kiwing

    2015-09-01

    A dynamic model for the motility of kinesin, including stochastic-force generation and step formation is proposed. The force driving the motion of kinesin motor is generated by the impulse from the collision between the randomly moving long-chain stalk and the ratchet-shaped outer surface of microtubule. Most of the dynamical and statistical features of the motility of kinesin are reproduced in a simulation system, with (a) ratchet structures similar to the outer surface of microtubule, (b) a bead chain connected to two heads, similarly to the stalk of the real kinesin motor, and (c) the interaction between the heads of the simulated kinesin and microtubule. We also propose an experiment to discriminate between the conventional hand-over-hand model and the dynamic model.

  8. Memo mediates ErbB2-driven cell motility.

    PubMed

    Marone, Romina; Hess, Daniel; Dankort, David; Muller, William J; Hynes, Nancy E; Badache, Ali

    2004-06-01

    Clinical studies have revealed that cancer patients whose tumours have increased ErbB2 expression tend to have more aggressive, metastatic disease, which is associated with parameters predicting a poor outcome. The molecular basis underlying ErbB2-dependent cell motility and metastases formation, however, still remains poorly understood. In this study, we show that activation of a set of signalling molecules, including MAPK, phosphatidylinositol-3-OH kinase (PI(3)K) and Src, is required for Neu/ErbB2-dependent lamellipodia formation and for motility of breast carcinoma cells. Stimulation of these molecules, however, failed to induce efficient cell migration in the absence of Neu/ErbB2 phosphorylation at Tyr 1201 or Tyr 1227. We describe a novel molecule, Memo (mediator of ErbB2-driven cell motility), that interacts with a phospho-Tyr 1227-containing peptide, most probably through the Shc adaptor protein. After Neu/ErbB2 activation, Memo-defective cells form actin fibres and grow lamellipodia, but fail to extend microtubules towards the cell cortex. Our data suggest that Memo controls cell migration by relaying extracellular chemotactic signals to the microtubule cytoskeleton.

  9. PACRG, a protein linked to ciliary motility, mediates cellular signaling.

    PubMed

    Loucks, Catrina M; Bialas, Nathan J; Dekkers, Martijn P J; Walker, Denise S; Grundy, Laura J; Li, Chunmei; Inglis, P Nick; Kida, Katarzyna; Schafer, William R; Blacque, Oliver E; Jansen, Gert; Leroux, Michel R

    2016-07-01

    Cilia are microtubule-based organelles that project from nearly all mammalian cell types. Motile cilia generate fluid flow, whereas nonmotile (primary) cilia are required for sensory physiology and modulate various signal transduction pathways. Here we investigate the nonmotile ciliary signaling roles of parkin coregulated gene (PACRG), a protein linked to ciliary motility. PACRG is associated with the protofilament ribbon, a structure believed to dictate the regular arrangement of motility-associated ciliary components. Roles for protofilament ribbon-associated proteins in nonmotile cilia and cellular signaling have not been investigated. We show that PACRG localizes to a small subset of nonmotile cilia in Caenorhabditis elegans, suggesting an evolutionary adaptation for mediating specific sensory/signaling functions. We find that it influences a learning behavior known as gustatory plasticity, in which it is functionally coupled to heterotrimeric G-protein signaling. We also demonstrate that PACRG promotes longevity in C. elegans by acting upstream of the lifespan-promoting FOXO transcription factor DAF-16 and likely upstream of insulin/IGF signaling. Our findings establish previously unrecognized sensory/signaling functions for PACRG and point to a role for this protein in promoting longevity. Furthermore, our work suggests additional ciliary motility-signaling connections, since EFHC1 (EF-hand containing 1), a potential PACRG interaction partner similarly associated with the protofilament ribbon and ciliary motility, also positively regulates lifespan.

  10. PACRG, a protein linked to ciliary motility, mediates cellular signaling

    PubMed Central

    Loucks, Catrina M.; Bialas, Nathan J.; Dekkers, Martijn P. J.; Walker, Denise S.; Grundy, Laura J.; Li, Chunmei; Inglis, P. Nick; Kida, Katarzyna; Schafer, William R.; Blacque, Oliver E.; Jansen, Gert; Leroux, Michel R.

    2016-01-01

    Cilia are microtubule-based organelles that project from nearly all mammalian cell types. Motile cilia generate fluid flow, whereas nonmotile (primary) cilia are required for sensory physiology and modulate various signal transduction pathways. Here we investigate the nonmotile ciliary signaling roles of parkin coregulated gene (PACRG), a protein linked to ciliary motility. PACRG is associated with the protofilament ribbon, a structure believed to dictate the regular arrangement of motility-associated ciliary components. Roles for protofilament ribbon–associated proteins in nonmotile cilia and cellular signaling have not been investigated. We show that PACRG localizes to a small subset of nonmotile cilia in Caenorhabditis elegans, suggesting an evolutionary adaptation for mediating specific sensory/signaling functions. We find that it influences a learning behavior known as gustatory plasticity, in which it is functionally coupled to heterotrimeric G-protein signaling. We also demonstrate that PACRG promotes longevity in C. elegans by acting upstream of the lifespan-promoting FOXO transcription factor DAF-16 and likely upstream of insulin/IGF signaling. Our findings establish previously unrecognized sensory/signaling functions for PACRG and point to a role for this protein in promoting longevity. Furthermore, our work suggests additional ciliary motility-signaling connections, since EFHC1 (EF-hand containing 1), a potential PACRG interaction partner similarly associated with the protofilament ribbon and ciliary motility, also positively regulates lifespan. PMID:27193298

  11. Structural Heterogeneity of Mitochondria Induced by the Microtubule Cytoskeleton

    PubMed Central

    Sukhorukov, Valerii M.; Meyer-Hermann, Michael

    2015-01-01

    By events of fusion and fission mitochondria generate a partially interconnected, irregular network of poorly specified architecture. Here, its organization is examined theoretically by taking into account the physical association of mitochondria with microtubules. Parameters of the cytoskeleton mesh are derived from the mechanics of single fibers. The model of the mitochondrial reticulum is formulated in terms of a dynamic spatial graph. The graph dynamics is modulated by the density of microtubules and their crossings. The model reproduces the full spectrum of experimentally found mitochondrial configurations. In centrosome-organized cells, the chondriome is predicted to develop strong structural inhomogeneity between the cell center and the periphery. An integrated analysis of the cytoskeletal and the mitochondrial components reveals that the structure of the reticulum depends on the balance between anterograde and retrograde motility of mitochondria on microtubules, in addition to fission and fusion. We propose that it is the combination of the two processes that defines synergistically the mitochondrial structure, providing the cell with ample capabilities for its regulative adaptation. PMID:26355039

  12. Anomalous motor mediated cargo transport in microtubule networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vandal, Steven; Macveigh-Fierro, Daniel; Shen, Zhiyuan; Lemoi, Kyle; Vidali, Luis; Ross, Jennifer; Tuzel, Erkan

    Cargo transport is an important biological mechanism by which cells locomote, self-organize, and actively transport organelles. This transport is mediated by the cytoskeletal network and molecular motors; however, it is not known how network self-organization and dynamics affect these transport processes. In order to develop a mechanistic understanding of cargo transport, we use a coarse-grained Brownian dynamics model that incorporates the dynamics of these networks, as well as experimentally determined motor properties. We will test these models with two experimental systems: (1) in vitro microtubule networks with kinesin-1 motors, and quantum dot cargos on recreated microtubule networks, and (2) an excellent model organism, the moss Physcomitrella patens, in which chloroplasts are transported via the microtubule network by means of kinesin-like proteins. Phenomenological network characterizations are made, both in vivo and in vitro, and cargo motility is characterized using Mean Squared Displacement (MSD) measurements. Our simulations shed light on the role of network density and motor properties on the observed transport behavior, and improve our understanding of cargo transport in cells.

  13. Microtubule defects & Neurodegeneration.

    PubMed

    Baird, Fiona J; Bennett, Craig L

    2013-12-06

    One of the major challenges facing the long term survival of neurons is their requirement to maintain efficient axonal transport over long distances. In humans as large, long-lived vertebrates, the machinery maintaining neuronal transport must remain efficient despite the slow accumulation of cell damage during aging. Mutations in genes encoding proteins which function in the transport system feature prominently in neurologic disorders. Genes known to cause such disorders and showing traditional Mendelian inheritance have been more readily identified. It has been more difficult, however, to isolate factors underlying the complex genetics contributing to the more common idiopathic forms of neurodegenerative disease. At the heart of neuronal transport is the rail network or scaffolding provided by neuron specific microtubules (MTs). The importance of MT dynamics and stability is underscored by the critical role tau protein plays in MT-associated stabilization versus the dysfunction seen in Alzheimer's disease, frontotemporal dementia and other tauopathies. Another example of the requirement for tight regulation of MT dynamics is the need to maintain balanced levels of post-translational modification of key MT building-blocks such as α-tubulin. Tubulins require extensive polyglutamylation at their carboxyl-terminus as part of a novel post-translational modification mechanism to signal MT growth versus destabilization. Dramatically, knock-out of a gene encoding a deglutamylation family member causes an extremely rapid cell death of Purkinje cells in the ataxic mouse model, pcd. This review will examine a range of neurodegenerative conditions where current molecular understanding points to defects in the stability of MTs and axonal transport to emphasize the central role of MTs in neuron survival.

  14. Sperm Motility in Flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guasto, Jeffrey; Juarez, Gabriel; Stocker, Roman

    2012-11-01

    A wide variety of plants and animals reproduce sexually by releasing motile sperm that seek out a conspecific egg, for example in the reproductive tract for mammals or in the water column for externally fertilizing organisms. Sperm are aided in their quest by chemical cues, but must also contend with hydrodynamic forces, resulting from laminar flows in reproductive tracts or turbulence in aquatic habitats. To understand how velocity gradients affect motility, we subjected swimming sperm to a range of highly-controlled straining flows using a cross-flow microfluidic device. The motion of the cell body and flagellum were captured through high-speed video microscopy. The effects of flow on swimming are twofold. For moderate velocity gradients, flow simply advects and reorients cells, quenching their ability to cross streamlines. For high velocity gradients, fluid stresses hinder the internal bending of the flagellum, directly inhibiting motility. The transition between the two regimes is governed by the Sperm number, which compares the external viscous stresses with the internal elastic stresses. Ultimately, unraveling the role of flow in sperm motility will lead to a better understanding of population dynamics among aquatic organisms and infertility problems in humans.

  15. Optimization of isopolar microtubule arrays.

    PubMed

    Agayan, Rodney R; Tucker, Robert; Nitta, Takahiro; Ruhnow, Felix; Walter, Wilhelm J; Diez, Stefan; Hess, Henry

    2013-02-19

    Isopolar arrays of aligned cytoskeletal filaments are components in a number of designs of hybrid nanodevices incorporating biomolecular motors. For example, a combination of filament arrays and motor arrays can form an actuator or a molecular engine resembling an artificial muscle. Here, isopolar arrays of microtubules are fabricated by flow alignment, and their quality is characterized by their degree of alignment. We find, in agreement with our analytical models, that the degree of alignment is ultimately limited by thermal forces, while the kinetics of the alignment process are influenced by the flow strength, the microtubule stiffness, the gliding velocity, and the tip length. Strong flows remove microtubules from the surface and reduce the filament density, suggesting that there is an optimal flow strength for the fabrication of ordered arrays.

  16. Cytoskeleton-dependent endomembrane organization in plant cells: an emerging role for microtubules.

    PubMed

    Brandizzi, Federica; Wasteneys, Geoffrey O

    2013-07-01

    Movement of secretory organelles is a fascinating yet largely mysterious feature of eukaryotic cells. Microtubule-based endomembrane and organelle motility utilizing the motor proteins dynein and kinesin is commonplace in animal cells. In contrast, it has been long accepted that intracellular motility in plant cells is predominantly driven by myosin motors dragging organelles and endomembrane-bounded cargo along actin filament bundles. Consistent with this, defects in the acto-myosin cytoskeleton compromise plant growth and development. Recent findings, however, challenge the actin-centric view of the motility of critical secretory organelles and distribution of associated protein machinery. In this review, we provide an overview of the current knowledge on actin-mediated organelle movement within the secretory pathway of plant cells, and report on recent and exciting findings that support a critical role of microtubules in plant cell development, in fine-tuning the positioning of Golgi stacks, as well as their involvement in cellulose synthesis and auxin polar transport. These emerging aspects of the biology of microtubules highlight adaptations of an ancestral machinery that plants have specifically evolved to support the functioning of the acto-myosin cytoskeleton, and mark new trends in our global appreciation of the complexity of organelle movement within the plant secretory pathway.

  17. Biological Information Processing in Single Microtubules

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-03-05

    single Microtubule Google Mountain view campus, workshop on quantum biology 22 October 2010 3. Paul Davies Beyond Center at Arizona State University...Phoenix) Phoenix, workshop on quantum biology and cancer research, Experimental studies on single microtubule, 25-27 October 2010, Tempe, Arizona...State University, USA 4. Quantum aspects of microtubule: Direct experimental evidence for the existence of quantum states in microtubule, Towards a

  18. The dynein cortical anchor Num1 activates dynein motility by relieving Pac1/LIS1-mediated inhibition

    PubMed Central

    Lammers, Lindsay G.

    2015-01-01

    Cortically anchored dynein orients the spindle through interactions with astral microtubules. In budding yeast, dynein is offloaded to Num1 receptors from microtubule plus ends. Rather than walking toward minus ends, dynein remains associated with plus ends due in part to its association with Pac1/LIS1, an inhibitor of dynein motility. The mechanism by which dynein is switched from “off” at the plus ends to “on” at the cell cortex remains unknown. Here, we show that overexpression of the coiled-coil domain of Num1 specifically depletes dynein–dynactin–Pac1/LIS1 complexes from microtubule plus ends and reduces dynein-Pac1/LIS1 colocalization. Depletion of dynein from plus ends requires its microtubule-binding domain, suggesting that motility is required. An enhanced Pac1/LIS1 affinity mutant of dynein or overexpression of Pac1/LIS1 rescues dynein plus end depletion. Live-cell imaging reveals minus end–directed dynein–dynactin motility along microtubules upon overexpression of the coiled-coil domain of Num1, an event that is not observed in wild-type cells. Our findings indicate that dynein activity is directly switched “on” by Num1, which induces Pac1/LIS1 removal. PMID:26483554

  19. On and around microtubules: an overview.

    PubMed

    Wade, Richard H

    2009-10-01

    Microtubules are hollow tubes some 25 nm in diameter participating in the eukaryotic cytoskeleton. They are built from alphabeta-tubulin heterodimers that associate to form protofilaments running lengthwise along the microtubule wall with the beta-tubulin subunit facing the microtubule plus end conferring a structural polarity. The alpha- and beta-tubulins are highly conserved. A third member of the tubulin family, gamma-tubulin, plays a role in microtubule nucleation and assembly. Other members of the tubulin family appear to be involved in microtubule nucleation. Microtubule assembly is accompanied by hydrolysis of GTP associated with beta-tubulin so that microtubules consist principally of 'GDP-tubulin' stabilized at the plus end by a short 'cap'. An important property of microtubules is dynamic instability characterized by growth randomly interrupted by pauses and shrinkage. Many proteins interact with microtubules within the cell and are involved in essential functions such as microtubule growth, stabilization, destabilization, and interactions with chromosomes during cell division. The motor proteins kinesin and dynein use microtubules as pathways for transport and are also involved in cell division. Crystallography and electron microscopy are providing a structural basis for understanding the interactions of microtubules with antimitotic drugs, with motor proteins and with plus end tracking proteins.

  20. Polarity orientation of microtubules and its applications with motor proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yokokawa, Ryuji

    2010-12-01

    We have studied integrations of micro/nano machining (MEMS/NEMS) technologies and biomaterials. One of our research directions is to utilize biomaterials in MEMS/NEMS to reveal new functions that could not be achieved by MEMS/NEMS alone. Here a motor protein system will be introduced as a nano actuator. The motility of kinesin and dynein motor proteins has been integrated with MEMS/NEMS or a microfluidic system. Since these motor proteins move on cytoskeletal filaments—microtubules (MTs)—depending on MT polarity, a key technology is to develop methods to orient MT polarities and then immobilize them. We have developed three methods to define MT polarities by (i) shared flow in a microfluidic channel, (ii) nanostructures and (iii) MEMS tweezers. Once MT polarities were oriented and fixed on a chip, they were ready to serve as rails for nano transport by kinesin and dynein motility. The motility was visualized by attaching cargos to motors, where the cargos were microbeads, silicon structures and quantum dots (Q-dots). This nano transport system can achieve a transport distance of up to ~100 μm, which enables us to focus on the transport of molecules not on bulk molecular flow by conventional microfluidics. Such a bio-hybrid system will be a key factor in realizing nano-scale system integration at the molecular scale.

  1. In Vitro Assays Demonstrate That Pollen Tube Organelles Use Kinesin-Related Motor Proteins to Move along MicrotubulesW⃞

    PubMed Central

    Romagnoli, Silvia; Cai, Giampiero; Cresti, Mauro

    2003-01-01

    The movement of pollen tube organelles relies on cytoskeletal elements. Although the movement of organelles along actin filaments in the pollen tube has been studied widely and is becoming progressively clear, it remains unclear what role microtubules play. Many uncertainties about the role of microtubules in the active transport of pollen tube organelles and/or in the control of this process remain to be resolved. In an effort to determine if organelles are capable of moving along microtubules in the absence of actin, we extracted organelles from tobacco pollen tubes and analyzed their ability to move along in vitro–polymerized microtubules under different experimental conditions. Regardless of their size, the organelles moved at different rates along microtubules in the presence of ATP. Cytochalasin D did not inhibit organelle movement, indicating that actin filaments are not required for organelle transport in our assay. The movement of organelles was cytosol independent, which suggests that soluble factors are not necessary for the organelle movement to occur and that microtubule-based motor proteins are present on the organelle surface. By washing organelles with KI, it was possible to release proteins capable of gliding carboxylated beads along microtubules. Several membrane fractions, which were separated by Suc density gradient centrifugation, showed microtubule-based movement. Proteins were extracted by KI treatment from the most active organelle fraction and then analyzed with an ATP-sensitive microtubule binding assay. Proteins isolated by the selective binding to microtubules were tested for the ability to glide microtubules in the in vitro motility assay, for the presence of microtubule-stimulated ATPase activity, and for cross-reactivity with anti-kinesin antibodies. We identified and characterized a 105-kD organelle-associated motor protein that is functionally, biochemically, and immunologically related to kinesin. This work provides clear

  2. Dear microtubule, I see you

    PubMed Central

    Nogales, Eva

    2016-01-01

    This essay summarizes my personal journey toward the atomic visualization of microtubules and a mechanistic understanding of how these amazing polymers work. During this journey, I have been witness and partaker in the blooming of a technique I love—cryo-electron microscopy. PMID:27799495

  3. Motility of Mollicutes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolgemuth, Charles; Igoshin, Oleg; Oster, George

    2003-03-01

    Recent experiments show that the conformation of filament proteins play a role in the motility and morphology of many different types of bacteria. Conformational changes in the protein subunits may produce forces to drive propulsion and cell division. Here we present a molecular mechanism by which these forces can drive cell motion. Coupling of a biochemical cycle, such as ATP hydrolysis, to the dynamics of elastic filaments enable elastic filaments to propagate deformations that generate propulsive forces. We demonstrate this possibility for two classes of wall-less bacteria called mollicutes: the swimming of helical shaped Spiroplasma, and the gliding motility of Mycoplasma. Similar mechanisms may explain the locomotion of other prokaryotes, including the swimming of Synechococcus and the gliding of some myxobacteria.

  4. Modeling collective cell motility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rappel, Wouter-Jan

    Eukaryotic cells often move in groups, a critical aspect of many biological and medical processes including wound healing, morphogenesis and cancer metastasis. Modeling can provide useful insights into the fundamental mechanisms of collective cell motility. Constructing models that incorporate the physical properties of the cells, however, is challenging. Here, I discuss our efforts to build a comprehensive cell motility model that includes cell membrane properties, cell-substrate interactions, cell polarity, and cell-cell interaction. The model will be applied to a variety of systems, including motion on micropatterned substrates and the migration of border cells in Drosophila. This work was supported by NIH Grant No. P01 GM078586 and NSF Grant No. 1068869.

  5. Microtubule catastrophe from protofilament dynamics.

    PubMed

    Jemseena, V; Gopalakrishnan, Manoj

    2013-09-01

    The disappearance of the guanosine triphosphate- (GTP) tubulin cap is widely believed to be the forerunner event for the growth-shrinkage transition ("catastrophe") in microtubule filaments in eukaryotic cells. We study a discrete version of a stochastic model of the GTP cap dynamics, originally proposed by Flyvbjerg, Holy, and Leibler [Phys. Rev. Lett. 73, 2372 (1994)]. Our model includes both spontaneous and vectorial hydrolysis, as well as dissociation of a nonhydrolyzed dimer from the filament after incorporation. In the first part of the paper, we apply this model to a single protofilament of a microtubule. A catastrophe transition is defined for each protofilament, similarly to the earlier one-dimensional models, the frequency of occurrence of which is then calculated under various conditions but without explicit assumption of steady-state conditions. Using a perturbative approach, we show that the leading asymptotic behavior of the protofilament catastrophe in the limit of large growth velocities is remarkably similar across different models. In the second part of the paper, we extend our analysis to the entire filament by making a conjecture that a minimum number of such transitions are required to occur for the onset of microtubule catastrophe. The frequency of microtubule catastrophe is then determined using numerical simulations and compared with analytical and semianalytical estimates made under steady-state and quasi-steady-state assumptions, respectively, for the protofilament dynamics. A few relevant experimental results are analyzed in detail and compared with predictions from the model. Our results indicate that loss of GTP cap in two to three protofilaments is necessary to trigger catastrophe in a microtubule.

  6. Label-Free Imaging of Single Microtubule Dynamics Using Spatial Light Interference Microscopy.

    PubMed

    Kandel, Mikhail E; Teng, Kai Wen; Selvin, Paul R; Popescu, Gabriel

    2017-01-24

    Due to their diameter, of only 24 nm, single microtubules are extremely challenging to image without the use of extrinsic contrast agents. As a result, fluorescence tagging is the common method to visualize their motility. However, such investigation is limited by photobleaching and phototoxicity. We experimentally demonstrate the capability of combining label-free spatial light interference microscopy (SLIM) with numerical processing for imaging single microtubules in a gliding assay. SLIM combines four different intensity images to obtain the optical path length map associated with the sample. Because of the use of broadband fields, the sensitivity to path length is better than 1 nm without (temporal) averaging and better than 0.1 nm upon averaging. Our results indicate that SLIM can image the dynamics of microtubules in a full field of view, of 200 × 200 μm(2), over many hours. Modeling the microtubule transport via the diffusion-advection equation, we found that the dispersion relation yields the standard deviation of the velocity distribution, without the need for tracking individual tubes. Interestingly, during a 2 h window, the microtubules begin to decelerate, at 100 pm/s(2) over a 20 min period. Thus, SLIM is likely to serve as a useful tool for understanding molecular motor activity, especially over large time scales, where fluorescence methods are of limited utility.

  7. NCAM regulates cell motility.

    PubMed

    Prag, Søren; Lepekhin, Eugene A; Kolkova, Kateryna; Hartmann-Petersen, Rasmus; Kawa, Anna; Walmod, Peter S; Belman, Vadym; Gallagher, Helen C; Berezin, Vladimir; Bock, Elisabeth; Pedersen, Nina

    2002-01-15

    Cell migration is required during development of the nervous system. The regulatory mechanisms for this process, however, are poorly elucidated. We show here that expression of or exposure to the neural cell adhesion molecule (NCAM) strongly affected the motile behaviour of glioma cells independently of homophilic NCAM interactions. Expression of the transmembrane 140 kDa isoform of NCAM (NCAM-140) caused a significant reduction in cellular motility, probably through interference with factors regulating cellular attachment, as NCAM-140-expressing cells exhibited a decreased attachment to a fibronectin substratum compared with NCAM-negative cells. Ectopic expression of the cytoplasmic part of NCAM-140 also inhibited cell motility, presumably via the non-receptor tyrosine kinase p59(fyn) with which NCAM-140 interacts. Furthermore, we showed that the extracellular part of NCAM acted as a paracrine inhibitor of NCAM-negative cell locomotion through a heterophilic interaction with a cell-surface receptor. As we showed that the two N-terminal immunoglobulin modules of NCAM, which are known to bind to heparin, were responsible for this inhibition, we presume that this receptor is a heparan sulfate proteoglycan. A model for the inhibitory effect of NCAM is proposed, which involves competition between NCAM and extracellular components for the binding to membrane-associated heparan sulfate proteoglycan.

  8. Motility of Mycoplasma pneumoniae.

    PubMed Central

    Radestock, U; Bredt, W

    1977-01-01

    Cell of Mycoplasma pneumoniae FH gliding on a glass surface in liquid medium were examined by microscopic observation and quantitatively by microcinematography (30 frames per min). Comparisons were made only within the individual experiments. The cells moved in an irregular pattern with numerous narrow bends and circles. They never changed their leading end. The average speed (without pauses) was relatively constant between o.2 and 0.5 mum/s. The maximum speed was about 1.5 to 2.0 mum/s. The movements were interrupted by resting periods of different lengths and frequency. Temperature, viscosity, pH, and the presence of yeast extract in the medium influenced the motility significantly; changes in glucose, calcium ions, and serum content were less effective. The movements were affected by iodoacetate, p-mercuribenzoate, and mitomycin C at inhibitory or subinhibitory concentrations. Sodium fluoride, sodium cyanide, dinitrophenol, chloramphenicol, puromycin, cholchicin, and cytochalasin B at minimal inhibitory concentrations did not affect motility. The movements were effectively inhibited by anti-M. pneumoniae antiserum. Studies with absorbed antiserum suggested that the surface components involved in motility are heat labile. The gliding of M. pneumoniae cells required an intact energy metabolism and the proteins involved seemed to have a low turnover. Images PMID:14925

  9. Microtubule alignment and manipulation using AC electrokinetics.

    PubMed

    Uppalapati, Maruti; Huang, Ying-Ming; Jackson, Thomas N; Hancock, William O

    2008-09-01

    The kinesin-microtubule system plays an important role in intracellular transport and is a model system for integrating biomotor-driven transport into microengineered devices. AC electrokinetics provides a novel tool for manipulating and organizing microtubules in solution, enabling new experimental geometries for investigating and controlling the interactions of microtubules and microtubule motors in vitro. By fabricating microelectrodes on glass substrates and generating AC electric fields across solutions of microtubules in low-ionic-strength buffers, bundles of microtubules are collected and aligned and the electrical properties of microtubules in solution are measured. The AC electric fields result in electro-osmotic flow, electrothermal flow, and dielectrophoresis of microtubules, which can be controlled by varying the solution conductivity, AC frequency, and electrode geometry. By mapping the solution conductivity and AC frequency over which positive dielectrophoresis occurs, the apparent conductivity of taxol-stabilized bovine-brain microtubules in PIPES buffer is measured to be 250 mS m(-1). By maximizing dielectrophoretic forces and minimizing electro-osmotic and electrothermal flow, microtubules are assembled into opposed asters. These experiments demonstrate that AC electrokinetics provides a powerful new tool for kinesin-driven transport applications and for investigating the role of microtubule motors in development and maintenance of the mitotic spindle.

  10. Arabidopsis MICROTUBULE-ASSOCIATED PROTEIN18 functions in directional cell growth by destabilizing cortical microtubules.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xia; Zhu, Lei; Liu, Baoquan; Wang, Che; Jin, Lifeng; Zhao, Qian; Yuan, Ming

    2007-03-01

    Microtubule-associated proteins (MAPs) play important roles in the regulation of microtubule function in cells. We describe Arabidopsis thaliana MAP18, which binds to microtubules and inhibits tubulin polymerization in vitro and colocalizes along cortical microtubules as patches of dot-like structures. MAP18 is expressed mostly in the expanding cells. Cells overexpressing MAP18 in Arabidopsis exhibit various growth phenotypes with loss of polarity. Cortical microtubule arrays were significantly altered in cells either overexpressing MAP18 or where it had been downregulated by RNA interference (RNAi). The cortical microtubules were more sensitive to treatment with microtubule-disrupting drugs when MAP18 was overexpressed, but more resistant when MAP18 was eliminated in cells expressing MAP18 RNAi. Our study demonstrated that MAP18 may play a role in regulating directional cell growth and cortical microtubule organization by destabilizing microtubules.

  11. Microtubule-microtubule sliding by kinesin-1 is essential for normal cytoplasmic streaming in Drosophila oocytes.

    PubMed

    Lu, Wen; Winding, Michael; Lakonishok, Margot; Wildonger, Jill; Gelfand, Vladimir I

    2016-08-23

    Cytoplasmic streaming in Drosophila oocytes is a microtubule-based bulk cytoplasmic movement. Streaming efficiently circulates and localizes mRNAs and proteins deposited by the nurse cells across the oocyte. This movement is driven by kinesin-1, a major microtubule motor. Recently, we have shown that kinesin-1 heavy chain (KHC) can transport one microtubule on another microtubule, thus driving microtubule-microtubule sliding in multiple cell types. To study the role of microtubule sliding in oocyte cytoplasmic streaming, we used a Khc mutant that is deficient in microtubule sliding but able to transport a majority of cargoes. We demonstrated that streaming is reduced by genomic replacement of wild-type Khc with this sliding-deficient mutant. Streaming can be fully rescued by wild-type KHC and partially rescued by a chimeric motor that cannot move organelles but is active in microtubule sliding. Consistent with these data, we identified two populations of microtubules in fast-streaming oocytes: a network of stable microtubules anchored to the actin cortex and free cytoplasmic microtubules that moved in the ooplasm. We further demonstrated that the reduced streaming in sliding-deficient oocytes resulted in posterior determination defects. Together, we propose that kinesin-1 slides free cytoplasmic microtubules against cortically immobilized microtubules, generating forces that contribute to cytoplasmic streaming and are essential for the refinement of posterior determinants.

  12. Microtubule-associated proteins from Antarctic fishes.

    PubMed

    Detrich, H W; Neighbors, B W; Sloboda, R D; Williams, R C

    1990-01-01

    Microtubules and presumptive microtubule-associated proteins (MAPs) were isolated from the brain tissues of four Antarctic fishes (Notothenia gibberifrons, N. coriiceps neglecta, Chaenocephalus aceratus, and a Chionodraco sp.) by means of a taxol-dependent, microtubule-affinity procedure (cf. Vallee: Journal of Cell Biology 92:435-442, 1982). MAPs from these fishes were similar to each other in electrophoretic pattern. Prominent in each preparation were proteins in the molecular weight ranges 410,000-430,000, 220,000-280,000, 140,000-155,000, 85,000-95,000, 40,000-45,000, and 32,000-34,000. The surfaces of MAP-rich microtubules were decorated by numerous filamentous projections. Exposure to elevated ionic strength released the MAPs from the microtubules and also removed the filamentous projections. Addition of fish MAPs to subcritical concentrations of fish tubulins at 0-5 degrees C induced the assembly of microtubules. Both the rate and the extent of this assembly increased with increasing concentrations of the MAPs. Sedimentation revealed that approximately six proteins, with apparent molecular weights between 60,000 and 300,000, became incorporated into the microtubule polymer. Bovine MAPs promoted microtubule formation by fish tubulin at 2-5 degrees C, and proteins corresponding to MAPs 1 and 2 co-sedimented with the polymer. MAPs from C. aceratus also enhanced the polymerization of bovine tubulin at 33 degrees C, but the microtubules depolymerized at 0 degrees C. We conclude that MAPs are part of the microtubules of Antarctic fishes, that these proteins promote microtubule assembly in much the same way as mammalian MAPs, and that they do not possess special capacities to promote microtubule assembly at low temperatures or to prevent cold-induced microtubule depolymerization.

  13. Cellular mechanics and motility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hénon, Sylvie; Sykes, Cécile

    2015-10-01

    The term motility defines the movement of a living organism. One widely known example is the motility of sperm cells, or the one of flagellar bacteria. The propulsive element of such organisms is a cilium(or flagellum) that beats. Although cells in our tissues do not have a flagellum in general, they are still able to move, as we will discover in this chapter. In fact, in both cases of movement, with or without a flagellum, cell motility is due to a dynamic re-arrangement of polymers inside the cell. Let us first have a closer look at the propulsion mechanism in the case of a flagellum or a cilium, which is the best known, but also the simplest, and which will help us to define the hydrodynamic general conditions of cell movement. A flagellum is sustained by cellular polymers arranged in semi-flexible bundles and flagellar beating generates cell displacement. These polymers or filaments are part of the cellular skeleton, or "cytoskeleton", which is, in this case, external to the cellular main body of the organism. In fact, bacteria move in a hydrodynamic regime in which viscosity dominates over inertia. The system is thus in a hydrodynamic regime of low Reynolds number (Box 5.1), which is nearly exclusively the case in all cell movements. Bacteria and their propulsion mode by flagella beating are our unicellular ancestors 3.5 billion years ago. Since then, we have evolved to form pluricellular organisms. However, to keep the ability of displacement, to heal our wounds for example, our cells lost their flagellum, since it was not optimal in a dense cell environment: cells are too close to each other to leave enough space for the flagella to accomplish propulsion. The cytoskeleton thus developed inside the cell body to ensure cell shape changes and movement, and also mechanical strength within a tissue. The cytoskeleton of our cells, like the polymers or filaments that sustain the flagellum, is also composed of semi-flexible filaments arranged in bundles, and also in

  14. Symmetry-Breaking Motility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Allen; Lee, Ha Youn; Kardar, Mehran

    2005-09-01

    Locomotion of bacteria by actin polymerization and in vitro motion of spherical beads coated with a protein catalyzing polymerization are examples of active motility. Starting from a simple model of forces locally normal to the surface of a bead, we construct a phenomenological equation for its motion. The singularities at a continuous transition between moving and stationary beads are shown to be related to the symmetries of its shape. Universal features of the phase behavior are calculated analytically and confirmed by simulations. Fluctuations in velocity are shown to be generically non-Maxwellian and correlated to the shape of the bead.

  15. Kinematic analysis of Toxoplasma gondii motility.

    PubMed

    Frixione, E; Mondragón, R; Meza, I

    1996-01-01

    Toxoplasma gondii tachyzoites execute a complex and little understood combination of rapid movements to reach and penetrate human or other animals cells. In the present study, computer-assisted simulation was used to quantitatively analyze the motility of these parasites in three-dimensional space with spatial and temporal resolutions in the micrometer and subsecond ranges. A digital model based on electron-micrographs of a serially sectioned tachyzoite was animated according to a videomicrographed sequence of a characteristic repetitive movement. Keyframe animation defined over 150 frames by a total of 36 kinematic parameters for specific motions, of both the whole model and particular domains, resulted in a real-time life-like simulation of the videorecorded tachyzoite movement. The kinematic values indicate that a full revolution of the model is composed of three half-turns accomplished in nearly 5 s with two phases: a relatively slow 180 degrees tilting with regard to the substratum plane, followed by fast (over 200 degrees/s) spinning almost simultaneous with pivoting around the posterior end, each clockwise and for about 180 degrees. Maximal flexing of the body, as well as bowing and retraction of its anterior end, occur at midway during the tilting phase. An estimated 70 degrees. clockwise torsion of the body seems to precede the spinning-pivoting phase. The results suggest the operation of two basic forces in the motility of T. gondii tachyzoites: (1) a clockwise torque that causes torsion, spinning, and pivoting; and (2) a longitudinal pull that contracts, bends and tilts the parasite. We discuss the possibility that both of these forces might result from the action of an actin-myosin system enveloping the twisted framework of microtubules characteristic of these organisms.

  16. End-binding proteins sensitize microtubules to the action of microtubule-targeting agents.

    PubMed

    Mohan, Renu; Katrukha, Eugene A; Doodhi, Harinath; Smal, Ihor; Meijering, Erik; Kapitein, Lukas C; Steinmetz, Michel O; Akhmanova, Anna

    2013-05-28

    Microtubule-targeting agents (MTAs) are widely used for treatment of cancer and other diseases, and a detailed understanding of the mechanism of their action is important for the development of improved microtubule-directed therapies. Although there is a large body of data on the interactions of different MTAs with purified tubulin and microtubules, much less is known about how the effects of MTAs are modulated by microtubule-associated proteins. Among the regulatory factors with a potential to have a strong impact on MTA activity are the microtubule plus end-tracking proteins, which control multiple aspects of microtubule dynamic instability. Here, we reconstituted microtubule dynamics in vitro to investigate the influence of end-binding proteins (EBs), the core components of the microtubule plus end-tracking protein machinery, on the effects that MTAs exert on microtubule plus-end growth. We found that EBs promote microtubule catastrophe induction in the presence of all MTAs tested. Analysis of microtubule growth times supported the view that catastrophes are microtubule age dependent. This analysis indicated that MTAs affect microtubule aging in multiple ways: destabilizing MTAs, such as colchicine and vinblastine, accelerate aging in an EB-dependent manner, whereas stabilizing MTAs, such as paclitaxel and peloruside A, induce not only catastrophes but also rescues and can reverse the aging process.

  17. GAR22β regulates cell migration, sperm motility, and axoneme structure

    PubMed Central

    Gamper, Ivonne; Fleck, David; Barlin, Meltem; Spehr, Marc; Sayad, Sara El; Kleine, Henning; Maxeiner, Sebastian; Schalla, Carmen; Aydin, Gülcan; Hoss, Mareike; Litchfield, David W.; Lüscher, Bernhard; Zenke, Martin; Sechi, Antonio

    2016-01-01

    Spatiotemporal cytoskeleton remodeling is pivotal for cell adhesion and migration. Here we investigated the function of Gas2-related protein on chromosome 22 (GAR22β), a poorly characterized protein that interacts with actin and microtubules. Primary and immortalized GAR22β−/− Sertoli cells moved faster than wild-type cells. In addition, GAR22β−/− cells showed a more prominent focal adhesion turnover. GAR22β overexpression or its reexpression in GAR22β−/− cells reduced cell motility and focal adhesion turnover. GAR22β–actin interaction was stronger than GAR22β–microtubule interaction, resulting in GAR22β localization and dynamics that mirrored those of the actin cytoskeleton. Mechanistically, GAR22β interacted with the regulator of microtubule dynamics end-binding protein 1 (EB1) via a novel noncanonical amino acid sequence, and this GAR22β–EB1 interaction was required for the ability of GAR22β to modulate cell motility. We found that GAR22β is highly expressed in mouse testes, and its absence resulted in reduced spermatozoa generation, lower actin levels in testes, and impaired motility and ultrastructural disorganization of spermatozoa. Collectively our findings identify GAR22β as a novel regulator of cell adhesion and migration and provide a foundation for understanding the molecular basis of diverse cytoskeleton-dependent processes. PMID:26564797

  18. Spirochete motility and morpholgy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Charon, Nyles

    2004-03-01

    Spirochetes have a unique structure, and as a result their motility is different from that of other bacteria. These organisms can swim in a highly viscous, gel-like medium, such as that found in connective tissue, that inhibits the motility of most other bacteria. In spirochetes, the organelles for motility, the periplasmic flagella, reside inside the cell within the periplasmic space. A given periplasmic flagellum is attached only at one end of the cell, and depending on the species, may or may not overlap in the center of the cell. The number of periplasmic flagella varies from species to species. These structures have been shown to be directly involved in motility and function by rotating within the periplasmic space (1). The present talk focuses on the spirochete that causes Lyme disease, Borrelia burgdorferi. In many bacterial species, cell shape is usually dictated by the peptidoyglycan layer of the cell wall. In the first part of the talk, results will be presented that the morphology of B. burgdorferi is the result of a complex interaction between the cell cylinder and the internal periplasmic flagella resulting in a cell with a flat-wave morphology. Backward moving, propagating waves enable these bacteria to swim and translate in a given direction. Using targeted mutagenesis, we inactivated the gene encoding the major periplasmic flagellar filament protein FlaB. The resulting flaB mutants not only were non-motile, but were rod-shaped (2). Western blot analysis indicated that flaB was no longer synthesized, and electron microscopy revealed that the mutants were completely deficient in periplasmic flagella. Our results indicate that the periplasmic flagella of B. burgdorferi have a skeletal function. These organelles dynamically interact with the rod-shaped cell cylinder to enable the cell to swim, and to confer in part its flat-wave morphology The latter part of the talk concerns the basis for asymmetrical rotation of the periplasmic flagella of B

  19. Monoclonal antibodies to kinesin heavy and light chains stain vesicle- like structures, but not microtubules, in cultured cells

    PubMed Central

    1989-01-01

    Kinesin, a microtubule-activated ATPase and putative motor protein for the transport of membrane-bounded organelles along microtubules, was purified from bovine brain and used as an immunogen for the production of murine monoclonal antibodies. Hybridoma lines that secreted five distinct antikinesin IgGs were cloned. Three of the antibodies reacted on immunoblots with the 124-kD heavy chain of kinesin, while the other two antibodies recognized the 64-kD light chain. When used for immunofluorescence microscopy, the antibodies stained punctate, cytoplasmic structures in a variety of cultured mammalian cell types. Consistent with the identification of these structures as membrane- bounded organelles was the observation that cells which had been extracted with Triton X-100 before fixation contained little or no immunoreactive material. Staining of microtubules in the interphase cytoplasm or mitotic spindle was never observed, nor were associated structures, such as centrosomes and primary cilia, labeled by any of the antibodies. Nevertheless, in double-labeling experiments using antibodies to kinesin and tubulin, kinesin-containing particles were most abundant in regions where microtubules were most highly concentrated and the particles often appeared to be aligned on microtubules. These results constitute the first direct evidence for the association of kinesin with membrane-bounded organelles, and suggest a molecular mechanism for organelle motility based on transient interactions of organelle-bound kinesin with the microtubule surface. PMID:2522455

  20. Microtubule detyrosination guides chromosomes during mitosis

    PubMed Central

    Barisic, Marin; Silva e Sousa, Ricardo; Tripathy, Suvranta K.; Magiera, Maria M.; Zaytsev, Anatoly V.; Pereira, Ana L.; Janke, Carsten; Grishchuk, Ekaterina L.; Maiato, Helder

    2015-01-01

    Before chromosomes segregate into daughter cells they align at the mitotic spindle equator, a process known as chromosome congression. CENP-E/Kinesin-7 is a microtubule plus-end-directed kinetochore motor required for congression of pole-proximal chromosomes. Because the plus-ends of many astral microtubules in the spindle point to the cell cortex, it remains unknown how CENP-E guides pole-proximal chromosomes specifically towards the equator. Here we found that congression of pole-proximal chromosomes depended on specific post-translational detyrosination of spindle microtubules that point to the equator. In vitro reconstitution experiments demonstrated that CENP-E-dependent transport was strongly enhanced on detyrosinated microtubules. Blocking tubulin tyrosination in cells caused ubiquitous detyrosination of spindle microtubules and CENP-E transported chromosomes away from spindle poles in random directions. Thus, CENP-E-driven chromosome congression is guided by microtubule detyrosination. PMID:25908662

  1. Mechanics of motility initiation and motility arrest in crawling cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Recho, Pierre; Putelat, Thibaut; Truskinovsky, Lev

    2015-11-01

    Motility initiation in crawling cells requires transformation of a symmetric state into a polarized state. In contrast, motility arrest is associated with re-symmetrization of the internal configuration of a cell. Experiments on keratocytes suggest that polarization is triggered by the increased contractility of motor proteins but the conditions of re-symmetrization remain unknown. In this paper we show that if adhesion with the extra-cellular substrate is sufficiently low, the progressive intensification of motor-induced contraction may be responsible for both transitions: from static (symmetric) to motile (polarized) at a lower contractility threshold and from motile (polarized) back to static (symmetric) at a higher contractility threshold. Our model of lamellipodial cell motility is based on a 1D projection of the complex intra-cellular dynamics on the direction of locomotion. In the interest of analytical transparency we also neglect active protrusion and view adhesion as passive. Despite the unavoidable oversimplifications associated with these assumptions, the model reproduces quantitatively the motility initiation pattern in fish keratocytes and reveals a crucial role played in cell motility by the nonlocal feedback between the mechanics and the transport of active agents. A prediction of the model that a crawling cell can stop and re-symmetrize when contractility increases sufficiently far beyond the motility initiation threshold still awaits experimental verification.

  2. Biological Information Processing in Single Microtubules

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-02-15

    microtubule: Direct experimental evidence for the existence of quantum states in microtubule, Towards a science of consciousness May 2-8 (2011), Sweden 4... quantum jump, sinusoidal switching of microtubule through various σS levels suggests that the spring-like expansion/contraction is the final defense...re-appears. To unravel the origin of quantum jump, we transmit thermal phonons along the Si-surface so that they propagate transversely across

  3. Ectopic A-lattice seams destabilize microtubules.

    PubMed

    Katsuki, Miho; Drummond, Douglas R; Cross, Robert A

    2014-01-01

    Natural microtubules typically include one A-lattice seam within an otherwise helically symmetric B-lattice tube. It is currently unclear how A-lattice seams influence microtubule dynamic instability. Here we find that including extra A-lattice seams in GMPCPP microtubules, structural analogues of the GTP caps of dynamic microtubules, destabilizes them, enhancing their median shrinkage rate by >20-fold. Dynamic microtubules nucleated by seeds containing extra A-lattice seams have growth rates similar to microtubules nucleated by B-lattice seeds, yet have increased catastrophe frequencies at both ends. Furthermore, binding B-lattice GDP microtubules to a rigor kinesin surface stabilizes them against shrinkage, whereas microtubules with extra A-lattice seams are stabilized only slightly. Our data suggest that introducing extra A-lattice seams into dynamic microtubules destabilizes them by destabilizing their GTP caps. On this basis, we propose that the single A-lattice seam of natural B-lattice MTs may act as a trigger point, and potentially a regulation point, for catastrophe.

  4. Depletion of JMJD5 sensitizes tumor cells to microtubule-destabilizing agents by altering microtubule stability.

    PubMed

    Wu, Junyu; He, Zhimin; Wang, Da-Liang; Sun, Fang-Lin

    2016-11-01

    Microtubules play essential roles in mitosis, cell migration, and intracellular trafficking. Drugs that target microtubules have demonstrated great clinical success in cancer treatment due to their capacity to impair microtubule dynamics in both mitotic and interphase stages. In a previous report, we demonstrated that JMJD5 associated with mitotic spindle and was required for proper mitosis. However, it remains elusive whether JMJD5 could regulate the stability of cytoskeletal microtubules and whether it affects the efficacy of microtubule-targeting agents. In this study, we find that JMJD5 localizes not only to the nucleus, a fraction of it also localizes to the cytoplasm. JMJD5 depletion decreases the acetylation and detyrosination of α-tubulin, both of which are markers of microtubule stability. In addition, microtubules in JMJD5-depleted cells are more sensitive to nocodazole-induced depolymerization, whereas JMJD5 overexpression increases α-tubulin detyrosination and enhances the resistance of microtubules to nocodazole. Mechanistic studies revealed that JMJD5 regulates MAP1B protein levels and that MAP1B overexpression rescued the microtubule destabilization induced by JMJD5 depletion. Furthermore, JMJD5 depletion significantly promoted apoptosis in cancer cells treated with the microtubule-targeting anti-cancer drugs vinblastine or colchicine. Together, these findings suggest that JMJD5 is required to regulate the stability of cytoskeletal microtubules and that JMJD5 depletion increases the susceptibility of cancer cells to microtubule-destabilizing agents.

  5. Insights into the Structure and Function of Ciliary and Flagellar Doublet Microtubules

    PubMed Central

    Linck, Richard; Fu, Xiaofeng; Lin, Jianfeng; Ouch, Christna; Schefter, Alexandra; Steffen, Walter; Warren, Peter; Nicastro, Daniela

    2014-01-01

    Cilia and flagella are conserved, motile, and sensory cell organelles involved in signal transduction and human disease. Their scaffold consists of a 9-fold array of remarkably stable doublet microtubules (DMTs), along which motor proteins transmit force for ciliary motility and intraflagellar transport. DMTs possess Ribbons of three to four hyper-stable protofilaments whose location, organization, and specialized functions have been elusive. We performed a comprehensive analysis of the distribution and structural arrangements of Ribbon proteins from sea urchin sperm flagella, using quantitative immunobiochemistry, proteomics, immuno-cryo-electron microscopy, and tomography. Isolated Ribbons contain acetylated α-tubulin, β-tubulin, conserved protein Rib45, >95% of the axonemal tektins, and >95% of the calcium-binding proteins, Rib74 and Rib85.5, whose human homologues are related to the cause of juvenile myoclonic epilepsy. DMTs contain only one type of Ribbon, corresponding to protofilaments A11-12-13-1 of the A-tubule. Rib74 and Rib85.5 are associated with the Ribbon in the lumen of the A-tubule. Ribbons contain a single ∼5-nm wide filament, composed of equimolar tektins A, B, and C, which interact with the nexin-dynein regulatory complex. A summary of findings is presented, and the functions of Ribbon proteins are discussed in terms of the assembly and stability of DMTs, ciliary motility, and other microtubule systems. PMID:24794867

  6. Tuning microtubule-based transport via filamentous MAPs: the problem of dynein

    PubMed Central

    Vershinin, Michael; Xu, Jing; Razafsky, David S.; King, Stephen J.; Gross, Steven P.

    2010-01-01

    We recently proposed that regulating the single-to-multiple motor transition was a likely strategy for regulating kinesin-based transport in vivo. Here, we use an in vitro bead assay coupled with an optical trap to investigate how this proposed regulatory mechanism affects dynein-based transport. We show that tau’s regulation of kinesin function can proceed without interfering with dynein-based transport. Surprisingly, at extremely high tau levels—where kinesin cannot bind microtubules—dynein can still contact microtubules. The difference between tau’s effects on kinesin- and dynein-based motility suggests that tau can be used to tune relative amounts of plus-end and minus-end directed transport. As in the case of kinesin, we find that the 3RS isoform of tau is a more potent inhibitor of dynein binding to microtubules. We show that this isoform-specific effect is not due to steric interference of tau’s projection domains, but rather due to tau’s interactions with the motor at the microtubule surface. Nonetheless, we do observe a modest steric interference effect of tau away from the microtubule and discuss the potential implications of this for molecular motor structure. PMID:18373727

  7. Novel mitochondrial extensions provide evidence for a link between microtubule-directed movement and mitochondrial fission

    SciTech Connect

    Bowes, Timothy; Gupta, Radhey S.

    2008-11-07

    Mitochondrial dynamics play an important role in a large number of cellular processes. Previously, we reported that treatment of mammalian cells with the cysteine-alkylators, N-ethylmaleimide and ethacrynic acid, induced rapid mitochondrial fusion forming a large reticulum approximately 30 min after treatment. Here, we further investigated this phenomenon using a number of techniques including live-cell confocal microscopy. In live cells, drug-induced fusion coincided with a cessation of fast mitochondrial movement which was dependent on microtubules. During this loss of movement, thin mitochondrial tubules extending from mitochondria were also observed, which we refer to as 'mitochondrial extensions'. The formation of these mitochondrial extensions, which were not observed in untreated cells, depended on microtubules and was abolished by pretreatment with nocodazole. In this study, we provide evidence that these extensions result from of a block in mitochondrial fission combined with continued application of motile force by microtubule-dependent motor complexes. Our observations strongly suggest the existence of a link between microtubule-based mitochondrial trafficking and mitochondrial fission.

  8. MCF7 microtubules: Cancer microtubules with relatively slow and stable dynamic in vitro.

    PubMed

    Feizabadi, Mitra Shojania; Rosario, Brandon

    2017-03-04

    There is known to be significant diversity of β-tubulin isoforms in cells. However, whether the functions of microtubules that are polymerized from different distributions of beta isotypes become distinct from one another are still being explored. Of particular interest, recent studies have identified the role that different beta tubulin isotypes carry in regulating the functions of some of the molecular motors along MCF7, or breast cancer, microtubules. That being said, how the specific distribution of beta tubulin isotypes impacts the MCF7 microtubules' dynamic is not well understood. The current study was initiated to directly quantify the in vitro dynamic and polymerization parameters of single MCF7 microtubules and then compare them with those obtained from neuronal microtubules polymerized from porcine brain tubulin. Surprisingly, unlike porcine brain microtubules, this type of cancer microtubule showed a relatively stable and slow dynamic. The comparison between the subsequently fast and unstable dynamic of porcine brain microtubules with the significantly slow and relatively stable dynamic of MCF7 microtubules suggests that beta tubulin isotypes may not only influence the microtubule based functionalities of some molecular motors, but also may change the microtubule's intrinsic dynamic.

  9. Microtubule motors: moving forward on many fronts.

    PubMed

    Allan, Viki

    2009-07-08

    Microtubule motors drive the movement of many different cargoes in eukaryotic cells. A combination of in vitro and in vivo approaches has led to a better understanding of their mechanism of action and function and are also revealing that the microtubule track itself may have an important role to play in directing cargo movement within the cell.

  10. Microtubule Control of Metabolism in Prostate Cancer

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-06-01

    Prostate Cancer PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Lynne Cassimeris CONTRACTING ORGANIZATION...Microtubule Control of Metabolism in Prostate Cancer 5b. GRANT NUMBER W81XWH-12-1-0071 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 6. AUTHOR(S) 5d. PROJECT...SUPPLEMENTARY NOTES 14. ABSTRACT The current standard chemotherapy treatment for metastatic castrate-resistant prostate cancer is the microtubule

  11. Mechanical Properties of Doubly Stabilized Microtubule Filaments

    PubMed Central

    Hawkins, Taviare L.; Sept, David; Mogessie, Binyam; Straube, Anne; Ross, Jennifer L.

    2013-01-01

    Microtubules are cytoskeletal filaments responsible for cell morphology and intracellular organization. Their dynamical and mechanical properties are regulated through the nucleotide state of the tubulin dimers and the binding of drugs and/or microtubule-associated proteins. Interestingly, microtubule-stabilizing factors have differential effects on microtubule mechanics, but whether stabilizers have cumulative effects on mechanics or whether one effect dominates another is not clear. This is especially important for the chemotherapeutic drug Taxol, an important anticancer agent and the only known stabilizer that reduces the rigidity of microtubules. First, we ask whether Taxol will combine additively with another stabilizer or whether one stabilizer will dominate another. We call microtubules in the presence of Taxol and another stabilizer, doubly stabilized. Second, since Taxol is often added to a number of cell types for therapeutic purposes, it is important from a biomedical perspective to understand how Taxol added to these systems affects the mechanical properties in treated cells. To address these questions, we use the method of freely fluctuating filaments with our recently developed analysis technique of bootstrapping to determine the distribution of persistence lengths of a large population of microtubules treated with different stabilizers, including Taxol, guanosine-5′ [(α, β)-methyleno] triphosphate, guanosine-5′-O-(3-thiotriphosphate), tau, and MAP4. We find that combinations of these stabilizers have novel effects on the mechanical properties of microtubules. PMID:23561528

  12. Movement of chromosomes with severed kinetochore microtubules.

    PubMed

    Forer, Arthur; Johansen, Kristen M; Johansen, Jørgen

    2015-05-01

    Experiments dating from 1966 and thereafter showed that anaphase chromosomes continued to move poleward after their kinetochore microtubules were severed by ultraviolet microbeam irradiation. These observations were initially met with scepticism as they contradicted the prevailing view that kinetochore fibre microtubules pulled chromosomes to the pole. However, recent experiments using visible light laser microbeam irradiations have corroborated these earlier experiments as anaphase chromosomes again were shown to move poleward after their kinetochore microtubules were severed. Thus, multiple independent studies using different techniques have shown that chromosomes can indeed move poleward without direct microtubule connections to the pole, with only a kinetochore 'stub' of microtubules. An issue not yet settled is: what propels the disconnected chromosome? There are two not necessarily mutually exclusive proposals in the literature: (1) chromosome movement is propelled by the kinetochore stub interacting with non-kinetochore microtubules and (2) chromosome movement is propelled by a spindle matrix acting on the stub. In this review, we summarise the data indicating that chromosomes can move with severed kinetochore microtubules and we discuss proposed mechanisms for chromosome movement with severed kinetochore microtubules.

  13. Mechanical properties of doubly stabilized microtubule filaments.

    PubMed

    Hawkins, Taviare L; Sept, David; Mogessie, Binyam; Straube, Anne; Ross, Jennifer L

    2013-04-02

    Microtubules are cytoskeletal filaments responsible for cell morphology and intracellular organization. Their dynamical and mechanical properties are regulated through the nucleotide state of the tubulin dimers and the binding of drugs and/or microtubule-associated proteins. Interestingly, microtubule-stabilizing factors have differential effects on microtubule mechanics, but whether stabilizers have cumulative effects on mechanics or whether one effect dominates another is not clear. This is especially important for the chemotherapeutic drug Taxol, an important anticancer agent and the only known stabilizer that reduces the rigidity of microtubules. First, we ask whether Taxol will combine additively with another stabilizer or whether one stabilizer will dominate another. We call microtubules in the presence of Taxol and another stabilizer, doubly stabilized. Second, since Taxol is often added to a number of cell types for therapeutic purposes, it is important from a biomedical perspective to understand how Taxol added to these systems affects the mechanical properties in treated cells. To address these questions, we use the method of freely fluctuating filaments with our recently developed analysis technique of bootstrapping to determine the distribution of persistence lengths of a large population of microtubules treated with different stabilizers, including Taxol, guanosine-5' [(α, β)-methyleno] triphosphate, guanosine-5'-O-(3-thiotriphosphate), tau, and MAP4. We find that combinations of these stabilizers have novel effects on the mechanical properties of microtubules.

  14. Rimonabant, Gastrointestinal Motility and Obesity

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Yan; Chen, Jiande

    2012-01-01

    Background: Obesity and overweight affect more than half of the US population and are associated with a number of diseases. Rimonabant, a cannabinoid receptor 1 blocker in the endocannabinoid (EC) system, was indicated in Europe for the treatment of obesity and overweight patients with associated risk factors but withdrawn on Jan, 2009 because of side effects. Many studies have reported the effects of rimonabant on gastrointestinal (GI) motility and food intake. The aims of this review are: to review the relationship of EC system with GI motility and food intake;to review the studies of rimonabant on GI motility, food intake and obesity;and to report the tolerance and side effects of rimonabant. Methods: the literature (Pubmed database) was searched using keywords: rimonabant, obesity and GI motility. Results: GI motility is related with appetite, food intake and nutrients absorption. The EC system inhibits GI motility, reduces emesis and increases food intake; Rimonabant accelerates gastric emptying and intestinal transition but decreases energy metabolism and food intake. There is rapid onset of tolerance to the prokinetic effect of rimonabant. The main side effects of rimonabant are depression and GI symptoms. Conclusions: Rimonabant has significant effects on energy metabolism and food intake, probably mediated via its effects on GI motility. PMID:23449551

  15. On complex, curved trajectories in microtubule gliding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gosselin, Pierre; Mohrbach, Hervé; Kulić, Igor M.; Ziebert, Falko

    2016-04-01

    We study the dynamics of microtubules in gliding assays. These biofilaments are typically considered as purely semiflexible, hence their trajectories under the action of motors covering the substrate have been regarded so far as straight, modulo fluctuations. However, this is not always the case experimentally, where microtubules are known to move on large scale circles or spirals, or even display quite regular wavy trajectories and more complex dynamics. Incorporating recent experimental evidence for a (small) preferred curvature as well as the microtubules' well established lattice twist into a dynamic model for microtubule gliding, we could reproduce both types of trajectories. Interestingly, as a function of the microtubules' length we found length intervals of stable rings alternating with regions where wavy and more complex dynamics prevails. Finally, both types of dynamics (rings and waves) can be rationalized by considering simple limits of the full model.

  16. Tubulin bistability and polymorphic dynamics of microtubules.

    PubMed

    Mohrbach, Hervé; Johner, Albert; Kulić, Igor M

    2010-12-31

    Based on the hypothesis that the GDP-tubulin dimer is a conformationally bistable molecule-rapidly fluctuating between a discrete curved and a straight state-we develop a model for polymorphic dynamics of the microtubule lattice. We show that GDP-tubulin bistability consistently explains unusual dynamic fluctuations, the apparent length-stiffness relation of grafted taxol-stabilized microtubules, and the curved-helical appearance of microtubules in general. When clamped by one end the microtubules undergo an unusual zero energy motion-in its effect reminiscent of a limited rotational hinge. We conclude that microtubules exist in highly cooperative energy-degenerate helical states and discuss possible implications in vivo.

  17. FLUCTUATING MOTOR FORCES BEND GROWING MICROTUBULES

    PubMed Central

    Shekhar, Nandini; Neelam, Srujana; Wu, Jun; Ladd, Anthony JC; Dickinson, Richard B.; Lele, Tanmay P.

    2013-01-01

    Despite their rigidity, microtubules in living cells bend significantly during polymerization resulting in greater curvature than can be explained by thermal forces alone. However, the source of the non-thermal forces that bend growing microtubules remains obscure. We analyzed the motion of microtubule tips in NIH-3T3 fibroblasts expressing EGFP-EB1, a fluorescent +TIP protein that specifically binds to the growing ends of microtubules. We found that dynein inhibition significantly reduced the deviation of the growing tip from its initial trajectory. Inhibiting myosin modestly reduced tip fluctuations, while simultaneous myosin and dynein inhibition caused no further decrease in fluctuations compared to dynein inhibition alone. Our results can be interpreted with a model in which dynein linkages play a key role in generating and transmitting fluctuating forces that bend growing microtubules. PMID:24039637

  18. Peroxisomes, lipid droplets, and endoplasmic reticulum “hitchhike” on motile early endosomes

    PubMed Central

    Guimaraes, Sofia C.; Schuster, Martin; Bielska, Ewa; Dagdas, Gulay; Kilaru, Sreedhar; Meadows, Ben R.A.; Schrader, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Intracellular transport is mediated by molecular motors that bind cargo to be transported along the cytoskeleton. Here, we report, for the first time, that peroxisomes (POs), lipid droplets (LDs), and the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) rely on early endosomes (EEs) for intracellular movement in a fungal model system. We show that POs undergo kinesin-3– and dynein-dependent transport along microtubules. Surprisingly, kinesin-3 does not colocalize with POs. Instead, the motor moves EEs that drag the POs through the cell. PO motility is abolished when EE motility is blocked in various mutants. Most LD and ER motility also depends on EE motility, whereas mitochondria move independently of EEs. Covisualization studies show that EE-mediated ER motility is not required for PO or LD movement, suggesting that the organelles interact with EEs independently. In the absence of EE motility, POs and LDs cluster at the growing tip, whereas ER is partially retracted to subapical regions. Collectively, our results show that moving EEs interact transiently with other organelles, thereby mediating their directed transport and distribution in the cell. PMID:26620910

  19. Active contraction of microtubule networks

    PubMed Central

    Foster, Peter J; Fürthauer, Sebastian; Shelley, Michael J; Needleman, Daniel J

    2015-01-01

    Many cellular processes are driven by cytoskeletal assemblies. It remains unclear how cytoskeletal filaments and motor proteins organize into cellular scale structures and how molecular properties of cytoskeletal components affect the large-scale behaviors of these systems. Here, we investigate the self-organization of stabilized microtubules in Xenopus oocyte extracts and find that they can form macroscopic networks that spontaneously contract. We propose that these contractions are driven by the clustering of microtubule minus ends by dynein. Based on this idea, we construct an active fluid theory of network contractions, which predicts a dependence of the timescale of contraction on initial network geometry, a development of density inhomogeneities during contraction, a constant final network density, and a strong influence of dynein inhibition on the rate of contraction, all in quantitative agreement with experiments. These results demonstrate that the motor-driven clustering of filament ends is a generic mechanism leading to contraction. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.10837.001 PMID:26701905

  20. Cyclic GMP and Cilia Motility

    PubMed Central

    Wyatt, Todd A.

    2015-01-01

    Motile cilia of the lungs respond to environmental challenges by increasing their ciliary beat frequency in order to enhance mucociliary clearance as a fundamental tenant of innate defense. One important second messenger in transducing the regulable nature of motile cilia is cyclic guanosine 3′,5′-monophosphate (cGMP). In this review, the history of cGMP action is presented and a survey of the existing data addressing cGMP action in ciliary motility is presented. Nitric oxide (NO)-mediated regulation of cGMP in ciliated cells is presented in the context of alcohol-induced cilia function and dysfunction. PMID:26264028

  1. Effects of iodide on the coupling between ATP hydrolysis and motile activity in axonemal dynein.

    PubMed

    Nakano, Izumi; Fujiwara, Rin; Wada, Mikiyo; Shingyoji, Chikako

    2011-05-01

    Dynein transduces the chemical energy of ATP hydrolysis into mechanical work through conformational changes. To identify the factors governing the coupling between the ATPase activity and the motile activity of the dynein molecule, we examined the effects of potassium iodide, which can unfold protein tertiary structures, on dynein activity in reactivated sea urchin sperm flagella. The presence of low concentrations of KI (0.05-0.1 M) in the reactivating solution did not influence the stable beating of demembranated flagella at 0.02-1 mM ATP, when the total concentration of potassium was kept at 0.15 M by adding K-acetate. However, double-reciprocal plots of ATP concentration and beat frequency showed a mixed type of inhibition by KI, indicating the possibility that KI inhibits the ATP hydrolysis and decreases the maximum sliding velocity. The ATPase activity of 21S dynein with or without microtubules did not decrease with the KI concentration. In the elastase-treated axonemes, KI decreased the velocity of sliding disintegration, while it increased the frequency of occurrence of axonemes showing no sliding. This may be related to some defect in the coordination of dynein activities. On 21S dynein adsorbed on a glass surface, however, the velocity of microtubule sliding was increased by KI, while KI lowered the dynein-microtubule affinity. The velocity further increased under lower salt conditions enhancing the dynein-microtubule interactions. The results suggest the importance of organized regulation of the dynamic states of dynein-microtubule interactions through the stalk for the coupling between the ATPase activity and the motile activity of dynein in beating flagella.

  2. End-on microtubule-dynein interactions and pulling-based positioning of microtubule organizing centers

    PubMed Central

    Laan, Liedewij; Roth, Sophie; Dogterom, Marileen

    2012-01-01

    During important cellular processes such as centrosome and spindle positioning, dynein at the cortex interacts with dynamic microtubules in an apparent “end-on” fashion. It is well-established that dynein can generate forces by moving laterally along the microtubule lattice, but much less is known about dynein’s interaction with dynamic microtubule ends. In this paper, we review recent in vitro experiments that show that dynein, attached to an artificial cortex, is able to capture microtubule ends, regulate microtubule dynamics and mediate the generation of pulling forces on shrinking microtubules. We further review existing ideas on the involvement of dynein-mediated cortical pulling forces in the positioning of microtubule organizing centers such as centrosomes. Recent in vitro experiments have demonstrated that cortical pulling forces in combination with pushing forces can lead to reliable centering of microtubule asters in quasi two-dimensional microfabricated chambers. In these experiments, pushing leads to slipping of microtubule ends along the chamber boundaries, resulting in an anisotropic distribution of cortical microtubule contacts that favors centering, once pulling force generators become engaged. This effect is predicted to be strongly geometry-dependent, and we therefore finally discuss ongoing efforts to repeat these experiments in three-dimensional, spherical and deformable geometries. PMID:22895049

  3. Cross-linking of microtubules by microtubule-associated proteins (MAPs) from the brine shrimp, Artemia.

    PubMed

    Campbell, E J; MacKinlay, S A; MacRae, T H

    1989-05-01

    Microtubules induced with taxol to assemble in cell-free extracts of the brine shrimp, Artemia, are cross-linked by microtubule-associated proteins (MAPs). When the MAPs, extracted from taxol-stabilized microtubules with 1 M-NaCl are co-assembled with purified Artemia or mammalian neural tubulin, reconstitution of cross-linking between microtubules occurs. The most prominent non-tubulin protein associated with reconstituted cross-linked microtubules has a molecular weight of 49,000 but we cannot yet exclude the possibility that other proteins may be responsible for the cross-linking. Cross-linkers are separated by varying distances while cross-linked microtubules, prepared under different conditions, are 6.9-7.7 nm apart. Cross-linking of microtubules by MAPs occurs whether MAPs are added to assembling tubulin or to microtubules, and it is not disrupted by ATP. The MAPs are heat-sensitive and do not stabilize microtubules to cold. Immunological characterization of Artemia MAPs on Western blots indicates that Artemia lack MAP 1, MAP 2 and tau. Our results clearly demonstrate that Artemia contain novel MAPs with the ability to cross-link microtubules from phylogenetically disparate organisms in an ATP-independent manner.

  4. Uniform polarity microtubule assemblies imaged in native brain tissue by second-harmonic generation microscopy.

    PubMed

    Dombeck, Daniel A; Kasischke, Karl A; Vishwasrao, Harshad D; Ingelsson, Martin; Hyman, Bradley T; Webb, Watt W

    2003-06-10

    Microtubule (MT) ensemble polarity is a diagnostic determinant of the structure and function of neuronal processes. Here, polarized MT structures are selectively imaged with second-harmonic generation (SHG) microscopy in native brain tissue. This SHG is found to colocalize with axons in both brain slices and cultured neurons. Because SHG arises only from noninversion symmetric structures, the uniform polarity of axonal MTs leads to the observed signal, whereas the mixed polarity in dendrites leads to destructive interference. SHG imaging provides a tool to investigate the kinetics and function of MT ensemble polarity in dynamic native brain tissue structures and other subcellular motility structures based on polarized MTs.

  5. Reovirus Cell Entry Requires Functional Microtubules

    PubMed Central

    Mainou, Bernardo A.; Zamora, Paula F.; Ashbrook, Alison W.; Dorset, Daniel C.; Kim, Kwang S.; Dermody, Terence S.

    2013-01-01

    ABSTRACT Mammalian reovirus binds to cell-surface glycans and junctional adhesion molecule A and enters cells by receptor-mediated endocytosis in a process dependent on β1 integrin. Within the endocytic compartment, reovirus undergoes stepwise disassembly, allowing release of the transcriptionally active viral core into the cytoplasm. To identify cellular mediators of reovirus infectivity, we screened a library of small-molecule inhibitors for the capacity to block virus-induced cytotoxicity. In this screen, reovirus-induced cell killing was dampened by several compounds known to impair microtubule dynamics. Microtubule inhibitors were assessed for blockade of various stages of the reovirus life cycle. While these drugs did not alter reovirus cell attachment or internalization, microtubule inhibitors diminished viral disassembly kinetics with a concomitant decrease in infectivity. Reovirus virions colocalize with microtubules and microtubule motor dynein 1 during cell entry, and depolymerization of microtubules results in intracellular aggregation of viral particles. These data indicate that functional microtubules are required for proper sorting of reovirus virions following internalization and point to a new drug target for pathogens that use the endocytic pathway to invade host cells. PMID:23820395

  6. Microtubules regulate disassembly of epithelial apical junctions

    PubMed Central

    Ivanov, Andrei I; McCall, Ingrid C; Babbin, Brian; Samarin, Stanislav N; Nusrat, Asma; Parkos, Charles A

    2006-01-01

    Background Epithelial tight junction (TJ) and adherens junction (AJ) form the apical junctional complex (AJC) which regulates cell-cell adhesion, paracellular permeability and cell polarity. The AJC is anchored on cytoskeletal structures including actin microfilaments and microtubules. Such cytoskeletal interactions are thought to be important for the assembly and remodeling of apical junctions. In the present study, we investigated the role of microtubules in disassembly of the AJC in intestinal epithelial cells using a model of extracellular calcium depletion. Results Calcium depletion resulted in disruption and internalization of epithelial TJs and AJs along with reorganization of perijunctional F-actin into contractile rings. Microtubules reorganized into dense plaques positioned inside such F-actin rings. Depolymerization of microtubules with nocodazole prevented junctional disassembly and F-actin ring formation. Stabilization of microtubules with either docetaxel or pacitaxel blocked contraction of F-actin rings and attenuated internalization of junctional proteins into a subapical cytosolic compartment. Likewise, pharmacological inhibition of microtubule motors, kinesins, prevented contraction of F-actin rings and attenuated disassembly of apical junctions. Kinesin-1 was enriched at the AJC in cultured epithelial cells and it also accumulated at epithelial cell-cell contacts in normal human colonic mucosa. Furthermore, immunoprecipitation experiments demonstrated association of kinesin-1 with the E-cadherin-catenin complex. Conclusion Our data suggest that microtubules play a role in disassembly of the AJC during calcium depletion by regulating formation of contractile F-actin rings and internalization of AJ/TJ proteins. PMID:16509970

  7. 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

  8. Xyloglucan Deficiency Disrupts Microtubule Stability and Cellulose Biosynthesis in Arabidopsis, Altering Cell Growth and Morphogenesis1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Xiao, Chaowen; Zhang, Tian; Zheng, Yunzhen

    2016-01-01

    Xyloglucan constitutes most of the hemicellulose in eudicot primary cell walls and functions in cell wall structure and mechanics. Although Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) xxt1 xxt2 mutants lacking detectable xyloglucan are viable, they display growth defects that are suggestive of alterations in wall integrity. To probe the mechanisms underlying these defects, we analyzed cellulose arrangement, microtubule patterning and dynamics, microtubule- and wall-integrity-related gene expression, and cellulose biosynthesis in xxt1 xxt2 plants. We found that cellulose is highly aligned in xxt1 xxt2 cell walls, that its three-dimensional distribution is altered, and that microtubule patterning and stability are aberrant in etiolated xxt1 xxt2 hypocotyls. We also found that the expression levels of microtubule-associated genes, such as MAP70-5 and CLASP, and receptor genes, such as HERK1 and WAK1, were changed in xxt1 xxt2 plants and that cellulose synthase motility is reduced in xxt1 xxt2 cells, corresponding with a reduction in cellulose content. Our results indicate that loss of xyloglucan affects both the stability of the microtubule cytoskeleton and the production and patterning of cellulose in primary cell walls. These findings establish, to our knowledge, new links between wall integrity, cytoskeletal dynamics, and wall synthesis in the regulation of plant morphogenesis. PMID:26527657

  9. Elenoside increases intestinal motility

    PubMed Central

    Navarro, E; Alonso, SJ; Navarro, R; Trujillo, J; Jorge, E

    2006-01-01

    AIM: To study the effects of elenoside, an arylnaph-thalene lignan from Justicia hyssopifolia, on gastro-intestinal motility in vivo and in vitro in rats. METHODS: Routine in vivo experimental assessments were catharsis index, water percentage of boluses, intestinal transit, and codeine antagonism. The groups included were vehicle control (propylene glycol-ethanol-plant oil-tween 80), elenoside (i.p. 25 and 50 mg/kg), cisapride (i.p. 10 mg/kg), and codeine phosphate (intragastric route, 50 mg/kg). In vitro approaches used isolated rat intestinal tissues (duodenum, jejunum, and ileum). The effects of elenoside at concentrations of 3.2 x 10-4, 6.4 x 10-4 and 1.2 x 10-3 mol/L, and cisapride at 10-6 mol/L were investigated. RESULTS: Elenoside in vivo produced an increase in the catharsis index and water percentage of boluses and in the percentage of distance traveled by a suspension of activated charcoal. Codeine phosphate antagonized the effect of 25 mg/kg of elenoside. In vitro, elenoside in duodenum, jejunum and ileum produced an initial decrease in the contraction force followed by an increase. Elenoside resulted in decreased intestinal frequency in duodenum, jejunum, and ileum. The in vitro and in vivo effects of elenoside were similar to those produced by cisapride. CONCLUSION: Elenoside is a lignan with an action similar to that of purgative and prokinetics drugs. Elenoside, could be an alternative to cisapride in treatment of gastrointestinal diseases as well as a preventive therapy for the undesirable gastrointestinal effects produced by opioids used for mild to moderate pain. PMID:17131476

  10. A mechanism for reorientation of cortical microtubule arrays driven by microtubule severing.

    PubMed

    Lindeboom, Jelmer J; Nakamura, Masayoshi; Hibbel, Anneke; Shundyak, Kostya; Gutierrez, Ryan; Ketelaar, Tijs; Emons, Anne Mie C; Mulder, Bela M; Kirik, Viktor; Ehrhardt, David W

    2013-12-06

    Environmental and hormonal signals cause reorganization of microtubule arrays in higher plants, but the mechanisms driving these transitions have remained elusive. The organization of these arrays is required to direct morphogenesis. We discovered that microtubule severing by the protein katanin plays a crucial and unexpected role in the reorientation of cortical arrays, as triggered by blue light. Imaging and genetic experiments revealed that phototropin photoreceptors stimulate katanin-mediated severing specifically at microtubule intersections, leading to the generation of new microtubules at these locations. We show how this activity serves as the basis for a mechanism that amplifies microtubules orthogonal to the initial array, thereby driving array reorientation. Our observations show how severing is used constructively to build a new microtubule array.

  11. The microtubule catastrophe promoter Sentin delays stable kinetochore–microtubule attachment in oocytes

    PubMed Central

    Głuszek, A. Agata; Cullen, C. Fiona; Li, Wenjing; Battaglia, Rachel A.; Radford, Sarah J.; Costa, Mariana F.; McKim, Kim S.; Goshima, Gohta

    2015-01-01

    The critical step in meiosis is to attach homologous chromosomes to the opposite poles. In mouse oocytes, stable microtubule end-on attachments to kinetochores are not established until hours after spindle assembly, and phosphorylation of kinetochore proteins by Aurora B/C is responsible for the delay. Here we demonstrated that microtubule ends are actively prevented from stable attachment to kinetochores until well after spindle formation in Drosophila melanogaster oocytes. We identified the microtubule catastrophe-promoting complex Sentin-EB1 as a major factor responsible for this delay. Without this activity, microtubule ends precociously form robust attachments to kinetochores in oocytes, leading to a high proportion of homologous kinetochores stably attached to the same pole. Therefore, regulation of microtubule ends provides an alternative novel mechanism to delay stable kinetochore–microtubule attachment in oocytes. PMID:26668329

  12. Insights into Antiparallel Microtubule Crosslinking by PRC1, a Conserved Nonmotor Microtubule Binding Protein

    SciTech Connect

    Subramanian, Radhika; Wilson-Kubalek, Elizabeth M.; Arthur, Christopher P.; Bick, Matthew J.; Campbell, Elizabeth A.; Darst, Seth A.; Milligan, Ronald A.; Kapoor, Tarun M.

    2010-09-03

    Formation of microtubule architectures, required for cell shape maintenance in yeast, directional cell expansion in plants and cytokinesis in eukaryotes, depends on antiparallel microtubule crosslinking by the conserved MAP65 protein family. Here, we combine structural and single molecule fluorescence methods to examine how PRC1, the human MAP65, crosslinks antiparallel microtubules. We find that PRC1's microtubule binding is mediated by a structured domain with a spectrin-fold and an unstructured Lys/Arg-rich domain. These two domains, at each end of a homodimer, are connected by a linkage that is flexible on single microtubules, but forms well-defined crossbridges between antiparallel filaments. Further, we show that PRC1 crosslinks are compliant and do not substantially resist filament sliding by motor proteins in vitro. Together, our data show how MAP65s, by combining structural flexibility and rigidity, tune microtubule associations to establish crosslinks that selectively mark antiparallel overlap in dynamic cytoskeletal networks.

  13. Centrosome motility is essential for initial axon formation in the neocortex.

    PubMed

    de Anda, Froylan Calderon; Meletis, Konstantinos; Ge, Xuecai; Rei, Damien; Tsai, Li-Huei

    2010-08-04

    The mechanisms underlying the normal development of neuronal morphology remain a fundamental question in neurobiology. Studies in cultured neurons have suggested that the position of the centrosome and the Golgi may predict the site of axon outgrowth. During neuronal migration in the developing cortex, however, the centrosome and Golgi are oriented toward the cortical plate at a time when axons grow toward the ventricular zone. In the current work, we use in situ live imaging to demonstrate that the centrosome and the accompanying polarized cytoplasm exhibit apical translocation in newborn cortical neurons preceding initial axon outgrowth. Disruption of centrosomal activity or downregulation of the centriolar satellite protein PCM-1 affects axon formation. We further show that downregulation of the centrosomal protein Cep120 impairs microtubule organization, resulting in increased centrosome motility. Decreased centrosome motility resulting from microtubule stabilization causes an aberrant centrosomal localization, leading to misplaced axonal outgrowth. Our results reveal the dynamic nature of the centrosome in developing cortical neurons, and implicate centrosome translocation and microtubule organization during the multipolar stage as important determinants of axon formation.

  14. Centriolar CPAP/SAS-4 Imparts Slow Processive Microtubule Growth.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Ashwani; Aher, Amol; Dynes, Nicola J; Frey, Daniel; Katrukha, Eugene A; Jaussi, Rolf; Grigoriev, Ilya; Croisier, Marie; Kammerer, Richard A; Akhmanova, Anna; Gönczy, Pierre; Steinmetz, Michel O

    2016-05-23

    Centrioles are fundamental and evolutionarily conserved microtubule-based organelles whose assembly is characterized by microtubule growth rates that are orders of magnitude slower than those of cytoplasmic microtubules. Several centriolar proteins can interact with tubulin or microtubules, but how they ensure the exceptionally slow growth of centriolar microtubules has remained mysterious. Here, we bring together crystallographic, biophysical, and reconstitution assays to demonstrate that the human centriolar protein CPAP (SAS-4 in worms and flies) binds and "caps" microtubule plus ends by associating with a site of β-tubulin engaged in longitudinal tubulin-tubulin interactions. Strikingly, we uncover that CPAP activity dampens microtubule growth and stabilizes microtubules by inhibiting catastrophes and promoting rescues. We further establish that the capping function of CPAP is important to limit growth of centriolar microtubules in cells. Our results suggest that CPAP acts as a molecular lid that ensures slow assembly of centriolar microtubules and, thereby, contributes to organelle length control.

  15. The smallest active fragment of microtubule-associated protein 4 and its interaction with microtubules in phosphate buffer.

    PubMed

    Hashi, Yurika; Nagase, Lisa; Matsushima, Kazuyuki; Kotani, Susumu

    2012-01-01

    To analyze the interaction between microtubule-associated protein (MAP) 4 and microtubules physicochemically, a MAP4 active site fragment was designed for nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) use. The fragment was bacterially expressed and purified to homogeneity. The buffer conditions for NMR were optimized to support microtubule assembly. The fragment was found to bind to microtubules under the optimized buffer conditions.

  16. Molecular cloning of the microtubule-associated mechanochemical enzyme dynamin reveals homology with a new family of GTP-binding proteins.

    PubMed

    Obar, R A; Collins, C A; Hammarback, J A; Shpetner, H S; Vallee, R B

    1990-09-20

    A complementary DNA encoding the D100 polypeptide of rat brain dynamin--a force-producing, microtubule-activated nucleotide triphosphatase--has been cloned and sequenced. The predicted amino acid sequence includes a guanine nucleotide-binding domain that is homologous with those of a family of antiviral factors, inducible by interferon and known as Mx proteins, and with the product of the essential yeast vacuolar protein sorting gene VPS1. These relationships imply the existence of a new family of GTPases with physiological roles that may include microtubule-based motility and protein sorting.

  17. Rigidity of microtubules is increased by stabilizing agents

    PubMed Central

    1995-01-01

    Microtubules are rigid polymers that contribute to the static mechanical properties of cells. Because microtubules are dynamic structures whose polymerization is regulated during changes in cell shape, we have asked whether the mechanical properties of microtubules might also be modulated. We measured the flexural rigidity, or bending stiffness, of individual microtubules under a number of different conditions that affect the stability of microtubules against depolymerization. The flexural rigidity of microtubules polymerized with the slowly hydrolyzable nucleotide analogue guanylyl-(alpha, beta)- methylene-diphosphonate was 62 +/- 9 x 10(-24) Nm2 (weighted mean +/- SEM); that of microtubules stabilized with tau protein was 34 +/- 3 x 10(-24) Nm2; and that of microtubules stabilized with the antimitotic drug taxol was 32 +/- 2 x 10(-24) Nm2. For comparison, microtubules that were capped to prevent depolymerization, but were not otherwise stabilized, had a flexural rigidity of 26 +/- 2 x 10(-24) Nm2. Decreasing the temperature from 37 degrees C to approximately 25 degrees C, a condition that makes microtubules less stable, decreased the stiffness of taxol-stabilized microtubules by one-third. We thus find that the more stable a microtubule, the higher its flexural rigidity. This raises the possibility that microtubule rigidity may be regulated in vivo. In addition, the high rigidity of an unstabilized, GDP-containing microtubule suggests that a large amount of energy could be stored as mechanical strain energy in the protein lattice for subsequent force generation during microtubule depolymerization. PMID:7642706

  18. Microtubules, polarity and vertebrate neural tube morphogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Cearns, Michael D.; Escuin, Sarah; Alexandre, Paula; Greene, Nicholas D. E.; Copp, Andrew J.

    2016-01-01

    Microtubules are key cellular components, long known to participate in morphogenetic events that shape the developing embryo. However, the links between the cellular functions of microtubules, their effects on cell shape and polarity and their role in large-scale morphogenesis remain poorly understood. Here, we examine these relationships with respect to two strategies for generating the vertebrate neural tube: bending and closure of the mammalian neural plate, and cavitation of the teleost neural rod. The latter process has been compared to ‘secondary’ neurulation that generates the caudal spinal cord in mammals. Microtubules align along the apico-basal axis of the mammalian neuroepithelium early in neural tube closure, participating functionally in interkinetic nuclear migration which indirectly impacts on cell shape. Whether microtubules play other functional roles in mammalian neurulation remains unclear. In the zebrafish, microtubules are important for defining the neural rod midline prior to its cavitation, both by localizing apical proteins at the tissue midline and by orienting cell division through a mirror-symmetric microtubule apparatus that helps to further define the medial localization of apical polarity proteins. Par proteins have been implicated in centrosome positioning in neuroepithelia as well as in the control of polarized morphogenetic movements in the neural rod. Understanding of microtubule functions during early nervous system development has so far been limited, partly by techniques that fail to distinguish ‘cause’ from ‘effect’. Future developments will likely rely on novel ways to selectively impair microtubule function in order to investigate the roles they play. PMID:27025884

  19. Sperm-Associated Antigen–17 Gene Is Essential for Motile Cilia Function and Neonatal Survival

    PubMed Central

    Teves, Maria Eugenia; Zhang, Zhibing; Costanzo, Richard M.; Henderson, Scott C.; Corwin, Frank D.; Zweit, Jamal; Sundaresan, Gobalakrishnan; Subler, Mark; Salloum, Fadi N.; Rubin, Bruce K.

    2013-01-01

    Primary ciliary dyskinesia (PCD), resulting from defects in cilia assembly or motility, is caused by mutations in a number of genes encoding axonemal proteins. PCD phenotypes are variable, and include recurrent respiratory tract infections, bronchiectasis, hydrocephaly, situs inversus, and male infertility. We generated knockout mice for the sperm-associated antigen–17 (Spag17) gene, which encodes a central pair (CP) protein present in the axonemes of cells with “9 + 2” motile cilia or flagella. The targeting of Spag17 resulted in a severe phenotype characterized by immotile nasal and tracheal cilia, reduced clearance of nasal mucus, profound respiratory distress associated with lung fluid accumulation and disruption of the alveolar epithelium, cerebral ventricular expansion consistent with emerging hydrocephalus, failure to suckle, and neonatal demise within 12 hours of birth. Ultrastructural analysis revealed the loss of one CP microtubule in approximately one quarter of tracheal cilia axonemes, an absence of a C1 microtubule projection, and other less frequent CP structural abnormalities. SPAG6 and SPAG16 (CP proteins that interact with SPAG17) were increased in tracheal tissue from SPAG17-deficient mice. We conclude that Spag17 plays a critical role in the function and structure of motile cilia, and that neonatal lethality is likely explained by impaired airway mucociliary clearance. PMID:23418344

  20. Kinetochore-microtubule interactions during cell division.

    PubMed

    Maiato, Helder; Sunkel, Claudio E

    2004-01-01

    Proper segregation of chromosomes during cell division is essential for the maintenance of genetic stability. During this process chromosomes must establish stable functional interactions with microtubules through the kinetochore, a specialized protein structure located on the surface of the centromeric heterochromatin. Stable attachment of kinetochores to a number of microtubules results in the formation of a kinetochore fibre that mediates chromosome movement. How the kinetochore fibre is formed and how chromosome motion is produced and regulated remain major questions in cell biology. Here we look at some of the history of research devoted to the study of kinetochore-microtubule interaction and attempt to identify significant advances in the knowledge of the basic processes. Ultrastructural work has provided substantial insights into the structure of the kinetochore and associated microtubules during different stages of mitosis. Also, recent in-vivo studies have probed deep into the dynamics of kinetochore-attached microtubules suggesting possible models for the way in which kinetochores harness the capacity of microtubules to do work and turn it into chromosome motion. Much of the research in recent years suggests that indeed multiple mechanisms are involved in both formation of the k-fibre and chromosome motion. Thus, rather than moving to a unified theory, it has become apparent that most cell types have the capacity to build the spindle using multiple and probably redundant mechanisms.

  1. Automated detection of whole-cell mitochondrial motility and its dependence on cytoarchitectural integrity

    PubMed Central

    Kandel, Judith; Chou, Philip; Eckmann, David M.

    2015-01-01

    Current methodologies used for mitochondrial motility analysis tend to either overlook individual mitochondrial tracks or analyze only peripheral mitochondria instead of mitochondria in all regions of the cell. Furthermore, motility analysis of an individual mitochondrion is usually quantified by establishing an arbitrary threshold for “directed” motion. In this work, we created a custom, publicly available computational algorithm based on a previously published approach (Giedt et al., 2012) in order to characterize the distribution of mitochondrial movements at the whole-cell level, while still preserving information about single mitochondria. Our technique is easy to use, robust and computationally inexpensive. Images are first pre-processed for increased resolution, and then individual mitochondria are tracked based on object connectivity in space and time. When our method is applied to microscopy fields encompassing entire cells, we reveal that the mitochondrial net distances in fibroblasts follow a lognormal distribution within a given cell or group of cells. The ability to model whole-cell mitochondrial motility as a lognormal distribution provides a new quantitative paradigm by which to compare mitochondrial motility in naïve and treated cells. We further demonstrate that microtubule and microfilament depolymerization shift the lognormal distribution in directions which indicate decreased and increased mitochondrial movement, respectively. These findings advance earlier work on neuronal axons (Morris and Hollenbeck, 1993) by relating them to a different cell type, applying them on a global scale, and automating measurement of mitochondrial motility in general. PMID:25678368

  2. Actin-based motility drives baculovirus transit to the nucleus and cell surface

    PubMed Central

    Ohkawa, Taro; Volkman, Loy E.

    2010-01-01

    Most viruses move intracellularly to and from their sites of replication using microtubule-based mechanisms. In this study, we show that nucleocapsids of the baculovirus Autographa californica multiple nucleopolyhedrovirus undergo intracellular motility driven by actin polymerization. Motility requires the viral P78/83 capsid protein and the host Arp2/3 complex. Surprisingly, the virus directs two sequential and coordinated phases of actin-based motility. Immediately after cell entry, motility enables exploration of the cytoplasm and collision with the nuclear periphery, speeding nuclear entry and the initiation of viral gene expression. Nuclear entry itself requires transit through nuclear pore complexes. Later, after the onset of early gene expression, motility is required for accumulation of a subpopulation of nucleocapsids in the tips of actin-rich surface spikes. Temporal coordination of actin-based nuclear and surface translocation likely enables rapid transmission to neighboring cells during infection in insects and represents a distinctive evolutionary strategy for overcoming host defenses. PMID:20660627

  3. Automated detection of whole-cell mitochondrial motility and its dependence on cytoarchitectural integrity.

    PubMed

    Kandel, Judith; Chou, Philip; Eckmann, David M

    2015-07-01

    Current methodologies used for mitochondrial motility analysis tend to either overlook individual mitochondrial tracks or analyze only peripheral mitochondria instead of mitochondria in all regions of the cell. Furthermore, motility analysis of an individual mitochondrion is usually quantified by establishing an arbitrary threshold for "directed" motion. In this work, we created a custom, publicly available computational algorithm based on a previously published approach (Giedt et al., 2012. Ann Biomed Eng 40:1903-1916) in order to characterize the distribution of mitochondrial movements at the whole-cell level, while still preserving information about single mitochondria. Our technique is easy to use, robust, and computationally inexpensive. Images are first pre-processed for increased resolution, and then individual mitochondria are tracked based on object connectivity in space and time. When our method is applied to microscopy fields encompassing entire cells, we reveal that the mitochondrial net distances in fibroblasts follow a lognormal distribution within a given cell or group of cells. The ability to model whole-cell mitochondrial motility as a lognormal distribution provides a new quantitative paradigm for comparing mitochondrial motility in naïve and treated cells. We further demonstrate that microtubule and microfilament depolymerization shift the lognormal distribution in directions which indicate decreased and increased mitochondrial movement, respectively. These findings advance earlier work on neuronal axons (Morris and Hollenbeck, 1993. J Cell Sci 104:917-927) by relating them to a different cell type, applying them on a global scale, and automating measurement of mitochondrial motility in general.

  4. Esophageal motility disorders: medical therapy.

    PubMed

    Lacy, Brian E; Weiser, Kirsten

    2008-01-01

    Symptoms of chest pain and dysphagia are common in the adult population. Most patients initially undergo an evaluation to exclude anatomic causes (ie, esophagitis, stricture) and cardiovascular disease as the etiology of these symptoms. Patients with persistent symptoms may then be referred for specialized testing of the esophagus, including esophageal manometry. Disorders of esophageal motility, which include achalasia, diffuse esophageal spasm, nutcracker esophagus, hypertensive lower esophageal sphincter, and ineffective motility are often identified in these patients. Unfortunately, the etiology of these disorders has not been well characterized and the treatment has not been standardized. This review will briefly discuss the impact, etiology, and diagnosis of esophageal motility disorders, and then focus on the medical management of these disorders using evidence from well-designed, prospective studies, where available.

  5. Glycogen synthase kinase 3 phosphorylates kinesin light chains and negatively regulates kinesin-based motility

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morfini, Gerardo; Szebenyi, Gyorgyi; Elluru, Ravindhra; Ratner, Nancy; Brady, Scott T.

    2002-01-01

    Membrane-bounded organelles (MBOs) are delivered to different domains in neurons by fast axonal transport. The importance of kinesin for fast antero grade transport is well established, but mechanisms for regulating kinesin-based motility are largely unknown. In this report, we provide biochemical and in vivo evidence that kinesin light chains (KLCs) interact with and are in vivo substrates for glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK3). Active GSK3 inhibited anterograde, but not retrograde, transport in squid axoplasm and reduced the amount of kinesin bound to MBOs. Kinesin microtubule binding and microtubule-stimulated ATPase activities were unaffected by GSK3 phosphorylation of KLCs. Active GSK3 was also localized preferentially to regions known to be sites of membrane delivery. These data suggest that GSK3 can regulate fast anterograde axonal transport and targeting of cargos to specific subcellular domains in neurons.

  6. Single file diffusion in microtubules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rutenberg, Andrew; Farrell, Spencer; Brown, Aidan

    2015-03-01

    We investigate the single file diffusion (SFD) of large particles entering a confined tubular geometry, such as luminal diffusion of proteins inside microtubules or flagella. While single-file effects have no effect on particle density, we report significant single-file effects for individually-tracked tracer particle motion. Both exact and approximate ordering statistics of particles entering semi-infinite tubes agree well with our stochastic simulations. Considering initially empty semi-infinite tubes, with particles entering at one end starting from an initial time t = 0 , tracked particles display super-diffusive effective exponents just after they enter the system and trends towards diffusive exponents at later times. Equivalently, if diffusive exponents are assumed the effective diffusivity is reduced at early times and enhanced at later times through a logarithmic factor logN , where N is the number of particles in the tube. When we number each particle from the first (n = 1) to the most recent (n = N), we find good scaling collapse of the effective diffusivity for all n. Techniques that track individual particles, or local groups of particles, such as photo-activation or photobleaching, will exhibit single-file effects.

  7. Microtubules self-repair in response to mechanical stress

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schaedel, Laura; John, Karin; Gaillard, Jérémie; Nachury, Maxence V.; Blanchoin, Laurent; Théry, Manuel

    2015-11-01

    Microtubules--which define the shape of axons, cilia and flagella, and provide tracks for intracellular transport--can be highly bent by intracellular forces, and microtubule structure and stiffness are thought to be affected by physical constraints. Yet how microtubules tolerate the vast forces exerted on them remains unknown. Here, by using a microfluidic device, we show that microtubule stiffness decreases incrementally with each cycle of bending and release. Similar to other cases of material fatigue, the concentration of mechanical stresses on pre-existing defects in the microtubule lattice is responsible for the generation of more extensive damage, which further decreases microtubule stiffness. Strikingly, damaged microtubules were able to incorporate new tubulin dimers into their lattice and recover their initial stiffness. Our findings demonstrate that microtubules are ductile materials with self-healing properties, that their dynamics does not exclusively occur at their ends, and that their lattice plasticity enables the microtubules' adaptation to mechanical stresses.

  8. Organization of neuronal microtubules in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    1979-01-01

    We have studied the organization of microtubules in neurons of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. Six neurons, which we call the microtubule cells, contain bundles of darkly staining microtubules which can be followed easily in serial-section electron micrographs. Reconstruction of individual microtubules in these cells indicate that most, if not all, microtubules are short compared with the length of the cell process. Average microtubule length varies characteristically with cell type. The arrangement of microtubules gives an overall polarity to each bundle: the distal ends of the microtubles are on the outside of the bundle, whereas the proximal ends are preferentially inside. The distal and proximal ends each have a characteristic appearance indicating that these microtubules may have a polarity of their own. Short microtubules in processes of other neurons in C. elegans have also been observed. PMID:479300

  9. [Microtubules in the nerve cells: morphological and functional aspects].

    PubMed

    Vorob'ev, V S; Portuganov, V V

    1980-10-01

    The modern literature concerning ultrastructure and cytochemistry of microtubules in the nervous tissue is reviewed. Common features of cytological and biochemical organization of microtubules in different parts of the nervous system of the vertebrates and invertebrates are analysed: the similarity of ultrastructure of microtubules and their molecular organization (tubulin and its alpha- and beta-monomeres), the ability of microtubules to assemble and disassemble, to bind specifically with poisons--colchicine and vinblastine, participation of microtubules in the neuroplastic transport. The authors' data on space arrangement of microtubules within cytoplasm of the neuronal processes (dendrites and unmyelinated axons in the central and peripheral nevous system) are presented. Some literature and personal results concerning ultrastructure of neurofilaments and microtubules in the myelinated nerve fibres are also considered. The functional significance of microtubules in the nervous system is discussed with special reference to facts and hypotheses on a possible role of microtubules in the propagation of nerve impulse.

  10. Microtubule organization is determined by the shape of epithelial cells

    PubMed Central

    Gomez, Juan Manuel; Chumakova, Lyubov; Bulgakova, Natalia A.; Brown, Nicholas H.

    2016-01-01

    Interphase microtubule organization is critical for cell function and tissue architecture. In general, physical mechanisms are sufficient to drive microtubule organization in single cells, whereas cells within tissues are thought to utilize signalling mechanisms. By improving the imaging and quantitation of microtubule alignment within developing Drosophila embryos, here we demonstrate that microtubule alignment underneath the apical surface of epithelial cells follows cell shape. During development, epidermal cell elongation and microtubule alignment occur simultaneously, but by perturbing cell shape, we discover that microtubule organization responds to cell shape, rather than the converse. A simple set of microtubule behaviour rules is sufficient for a computer model to mimic the observed responses to changes in cell surface geometry. Moreover, we show that microtubules colliding with cell boundaries zip-up or depolymerize in an angle-dependent manner, as predicted by the model. Finally, we show microtubule alignment responds to cell shape in diverse epithelia. PMID:27779189

  11. Microtubules self-repair in response to mechanical stress

    PubMed Central

    Schaedel, Laura; John, Karin; Gaillard, Jérémie; Nachury, Maxence V.; Blanchoin, Laurent; Théry, Manuel

    2015-01-01

    Microtubules - which define the shape of axons, cilia and flagella, and provide tracks for intracellular transport - can be highly bent by intracellular forces, and microtubule structure and stiffness are thought to be affected by physical constraints. Yet how microtubules tolerate the vast forces exerted on them remains unknown. Here, by using a microfluidic device, we show that microtubule stiffness decreases incrementally with each cycle of bending and release. Similar to other cases of material fatigue, the concentration of mechanical stresses on pre-existing defects in the microtubule lattice is responsible for the generation of larger damages, which further decrease microtubule stiffness. Strikingly, damaged microtubules were able to incorporate new tubulin dimers into their lattice and recover their initial stiffness. Our findings demonstrate that microtubules are ductile materials with self-healing properties, that their dynamics does not exclusively occur at their ends, and that their lattice plasticity enables the microtubules' adaptation to mechanical stresses. PMID:26343914

  12. History-dependent catastrophes regulate axonal microtubule behavior.

    PubMed

    Stepanova, Tatiana; Smal, Ihor; van Haren, Jeffrey; Akinci, Umut; Liu, Zhe; Miedema, Marja; Limpens, Ronald; van Ham, Marco; van der Reijden, Michael; Poot, Raymond; Grosveld, Frank; Mommaas, Mieke; Meijering, Erik; Galjart, Niels

    2010-06-08

    In Chinese hamster ovary cells, microtubules originate at the microtubule organizing center (MTOC) and grow persistently toward the cell edge, where they undergo catastrophe. In axons, microtubule dynamics must be regulated differently because microtubules grow parallel to the plasma membrane and there is no MTOC. GFP-tagged microtubule plus end tracking proteins (+TIPs) mark the ends of growing neuronal microtubules. Their fluorescent "comet-like" pattern reflects turnover of +TIP binding sites. Using GFP-tagged +TIPs and fluorescence-based segmentation and tracking tools, we show that axonal microtubules grow with a constant average velocity and that they undergo catastrophes at random positions, yet in a programmed fashion. Using protein depletion approaches, we find that the +TIPs CLIP-115 and CLIP-170 affect average microtubule growth rate and growth distance in neurons but not the duration of a microtubule growth event. In N1E-115 neuroblastoma cells, we find that EB1, the core +TIP, regulates microtubule growth rate, growth distance, and duration, consistent with in vitro data. Combined, our data suggest that CLIPs influence the axonal microtubule/tubulin ratio, whereas EB1 stimulates microtubule growth and structural transitions at microtubule ends, thereby regulating microtubule catastrophes and the turnover of +TIP binding sites.

  13. Contact formation during fibroblast locomotion: involvement of membrane ruffles and microtubules

    PubMed Central

    1988-01-01

    We have correlated the motility of the leading edge of fibroblasts, monitored by phase-contrast cinematography, with the relative distributions of several cytoskeletal elements (vinculin, tubulin, and actin) as well as with the contact patterns determined by interference reflection microscopy. This analysis has revealed the involvement of both ruffles and microspikes, as well as microtubules in the initiation of focal contact formation. Nascent vinculin sites within the leading edge or at its base, taken as primordial cell-substrate contacts, were invariably colocalized with sites that showed a history of transient, prolonged, or cyclic ruffling activity. Extended microspike structures, often preceded the formation of ruffles. Immunofluorescent labeling indicated that some of these primordial contacts were in close apposition to the ends of microtubules that penetrated into the leading edge. By fluorescence and electron microscopy short bundles of actin filaments found at the base of the leading edge were identified as presumptive, primordial contacts. It is concluded that ruffles and microspikes, either independently or in combination, initiate and mark the sites for future contact. Plaque proteins then accumulate (within 10-30 s) at the contract site and, beneath ruffles, induce localized bundling of actin filaments. We propose that all primordial contacts support traction for leading edge protrusion but that only some persist long enough to nucleate stress fiber assembly. Microtubules are postulated as the elements that select, stabilize, and potentiate the formation of these latter, long-lived contacts. PMID:3126193

  14. Microtubule-dependent movement of late endocytic vesicles in vitro: requirements for Dynein and Kinesin.

    PubMed

    Bananis, Eustratios; Nath, Sangeeta; Gordon, Kristie; Satir, Peter; Stockert, Richard J; Murray, John W; Wolkoff, Allan W

    2004-08-01

    Our previous studies demonstrated that fluorescent early endocytic vesicles prepared from rat liver after injection of Texas red asialoorosomucoid contain asialoglycoprotein and its receptor and move and undergo fission along microtubules using kinesin I and KIFC2, with Rab4 regulating KIFC2 activity (J. Cell Sci. 116, 2749, 2003). In the current study, procedures to prepare fluorescent late endocytic vesicles were devised. In addition, flow cytometry was utilized to prepare highly purified fluorescent endocytic vesicles, permitting validation of microscopy-based experiments as well as direct biochemical analysis. These studies revealed that late vesicles bound to and moved along microtubules, but in contrast to early vesicles, did not undergo fission. As compared with early vesicles, late vesicles had reduced association with receptor, Rab4, and kinesin I but were highly associated with dynein, Rab7, dynactin, and KIF3A. Dynein and KIF3A antibodies inhibited late vesicle motility, whereas kinesin I and KIFC2 antibodies had no effect. Dynamitin antibodies prevented the association of late vesicles with microtubules. These results indicate that acquisition and exchange of specific motor and regulatory proteins characterizes and may regulate the transition of early to late endocytic vesicles. Flow cytometric purification should ultimately facilitate detailed proteomic analysis and mapping of endocytic vesicle-associated proteins.

  15. Reconstitution of dynein transport to the microtubule plus end by kinesin

    PubMed Central

    Roberts, Anthony J; Goodman, Brian S; Reck-Peterson, Samara L

    2014-01-01

    Cytoplasmic dynein powers intracellular movement of cargo toward the microtubule minus end. The first step in a variety of dynein transport events is the targeting of dynein to the dynamic microtubule plus end, but the molecular mechanism underlying this spatial regulation is not understood. Here, we reconstitute dynein plus-end transport using purified proteins from S. cerevisiae and dissect the mechanism using single-molecule microscopy. We find that two proteins–homologs of Lis1 and Clip170–are sufficient to couple dynein to Kip2, a plus-end-directed kinesin. Dynein is transported to the plus end by Kip2, but is not a passive passenger, resisting its own plus-end-directed motion. Two microtubule-associated proteins, homologs of Clip170 and EB1, act as processivity factors for Kip2, helping it overcome dynein's intrinsic minus-end-directed motility. This reveals how a minimal system of proteins transports a molecular motor to the start of its track. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.02641.001 PMID:24916158

  16. TIPsy tour guides: how microtubule plus-end tracking proteins (+TIPs) facilitate axon guidance

    PubMed Central

    Bearce, Elizabeth A.; Erdogan, Burcu; Lowery, Laura Anne

    2015-01-01

    The growth cone is a dynamic cytoskeletal vehicle, which drives the end of a developing axon. It serves to interpret and navigate through the complex landscape and guidance cues of the early nervous system. The growth cone’s distinctive cytoskeletal organization offers a fascinating platform to study how extracellular cues can be translated into mechanical outgrowth and turning behaviors. While many studies of cell motility highlight the importance of actin networks in signaling, adhesion, and propulsion, both seminal and emerging works in the field have highlighted a unique and necessary role for microtubules (MTs) in growth cone navigation. Here, we focus on the role of singular pioneer MTs, which extend into the growth cone periphery and are regulated by a diverse family of microtubule plus-end tracking proteins (+TIPs). These +TIPs accumulate at the dynamic ends of MTs, where they are well-positioned to encounter and respond to key signaling events downstream of guidance receptors, catalyzing immediate changes in microtubule stability and actin cross-talk, that facilitate both axonal outgrowth and turning events. PMID:26175669

  17. Real-time monitoring of changes in microtubule mechanical properties in response to microtubule-destabilizing drug treatment.

    PubMed

    Han, Sung-Woong; Simona, Patriche; Banu, Mihaela; Adachi, Taiji

    2013-03-01

    Microtubules are cylindrical protein polymers that play important roles in a number of cellular functions. The properties of microtubules are dynamically changed by interacting with many microtubule-related proteins and drugs. In this study, we used atomic force microscopy to evaluate the changes in microtubule mechanical properties induced by treatment with nocodazole, which is a microtubule-destabilizing drug. The average spring constant of the microtubules, which was used as a measure of microtubule lateral stiffness, was drastically decreased by treatment with nocodazole within 30 min from 0.052 +/- 0.014 N/m to 0.029 +/- 0.015 N/m. Our findings will aid in the understanding of microtubule dynamics, protein interactions in response to drug treatment, microtubule-related diseases, and drug development.

  18. Identification of novel microtubule-binding proteins by taxol-mediated microtubule stabilization and mass spectrometry analysis

    PubMed Central

    He, Xianfei; Liu, Zhu; He, Qianqian; Qin, Juan; Liu, Ningning; Zhang, Linlin; Li, Dengwen; Zhou, Jun; Shui, Wenqing; Liu, Min

    2015-01-01

    Microtubule-binding proteins (MBPs) are structurally and functionally diverse regulators of microtubule-mediated cellular processes. Alteration of MBPs has been implicated in the pathogenesis of human diseases, including cancer. MBPs can stabilize or destabilize microtubules or move along microtubules to transport various cargoes. In addition, MBPs can control microtubule dynamics through direct interaction with microtubules or coordination with other proteins. To better understand microtubule structure and function, it is necessary to identify additional MBPs. In this study, we isolated microtubules and MBPs from mammalian cells by a taxol-based method and then profiled a panel of MBPs by mass spectrometry. We discovered a number of previously uncharacterized MBPs, including several membrane-associated proteins and proteins involved in post-translational modifications, in addition to several structural components. These results support the notion that microtubules have a wide range of functions and may undergo more exquisite regulation than previously recognized. PMID:26445615

  19. Non-centrosomal nucleation mediated by augmin organizes microtubules in post-mitotic neurons and controls axonal microtubule polarity

    PubMed Central

    Sánchez-Huertas, Carlos; Freixo, Francisco; Viais, Ricardo; Lacasa, Cristina; Soriano, Eduardo; Lüders, Jens

    2016-01-01

    Neurons display a highly polarized microtubule network that mediates trafficking throughout the extensive cytoplasm and is crucial for neuronal differentiation and function. In newborn migrating neurons, the microtubule network is organized by the centrosome. During neuron maturation, however, the centrosome gradually loses this activity, and how microtubules are organized in more mature neurons remains poorly understood. Here, we demonstrate that microtubule organization in post-mitotic neurons strongly depends on non-centrosomal nucleation mediated by augmin and by the nucleator γTuRC. Disruption of either complex not only reduces microtubule density but also microtubule bundling. These microtubule defects impair neurite formation, interfere with axon specification and growth, and disrupt axonal trafficking. In axons augmin does not merely mediate nucleation of microtubules but ensures their uniform plus end-out orientation. Thus, the augmin-γTuRC module, initially identified in mitotic cells, may be commonly used to generate and maintain microtubule configurations with specific polarity. PMID:27405868

  20. Specific association of STOP protein with microtubules in vitro and with stable microtubules in mitotic spindles of cultured cells.

    PubMed

    Margolis, R L; Rauch, C T; Pirollet, F; Job, D

    1990-12-01

    STOP (Stable Tubule Only Polypeptide) is a neuronal microtubule associated protein of 145 kd that stabilizes microtubules indefinitely to in vitro disassembly induced by cold temperature, millimolar calcium or by drugs. We have produced monoclonal antibodies against STOP. Using an antibody affinity column, we have produced a homogeneously pure 145 kd protein which has STOP activity as defined by its ability to induce cold stability and resistance to dilution induced disassembly in microtubules in vitro. Western blot analysis, using a specific monoclonal antibody, demonstrates that STOP recycles quantitatively with microtubules through three assembly cycles in vitro. Immunofluorescence analysis demonstrates that STOP is specifically associated with microtubules of mitotic spindles in neuronal cells. Further, and most interestingly, STOP at physiological temperature appears to be preferentially distributed on the distinct microtubule subpopulations that display cold stability; kinetochore-to-pole microtubules and telophase midbody microtubules. The observed distribution suggests that STOP induces the observed cold stability of these microtubule subpopulations in vivo.

  1. A Hopping Mechanism for Cargo Transport by Molecular Motors on Crowded Microtubules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goldman, Carla

    2010-05-01

    Most models designed to study the bidirectional movement of cargos as they are driven by molecular motors rely on the idea that motors of different polarities can be coordinated by external agents if arranged into a motor-cargo complex to perform the necessary work Gross, Hither and yon: a review of bidirectional microtubule-based transport (Gross in Phys. Biol. 1:R1-R11, 2004). Although these models have provided us with important insights into these phenomena, there are still many unanswered questions regarding the mechanisms through which the movement of the complex takes place on crowded microtubules. For example (i) how does cargo-binding affect motor motility? and in connection with that - (ii) how does the presence of other motors (and also other cargos) on the microtubule affect the motility of the motor-cargo complex? We discuss these questions from a different perspective. The movement of a cargo is conceived here as a hopping process resulting from the transference of cargo between neighboring motors. In the light of this, we examine the conditions under which cargo might display bidirectional movement even if directed by motors of a single polarity. The global properties of the model in the long-time regime are obtained by mapping the dynamics of the collection of interacting motors and cargos into an asymmetric simple exclusion process (ASEP) which can be resolved using the matrix ansatz introduced by Derrida (Derrida and Evans in Nonequilibrium Statistical Mechanics in One Dimension, pp. 277-304, 1997; Derrida et al. in J. Phys. A 26:1493-1517, 1993).

  2. Motility of Electric Cable Bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Damgaard, Lars Riis; Holm, Simon Agner; Schramm, Andreas; Nielsen, Lars Peter

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Cable bacteria are filamentous bacteria that electrically couple sulfide oxidation and oxygen reduction at centimeter distances, and observations in sediment environments have suggested that they are motile. By time-lapse microscopy, we found that cable bacteria used gliding motility on surfaces with a highly variable speed of 0.5 ± 0.3 μm s−1 (mean ± standard deviation) and time between reversals of 155 ± 108 s. They frequently moved forward in loops, and formation of twisted loops revealed helical rotation of the filaments. Cable bacteria responded to chemical gradients in their environment, and around the oxic-anoxic interface, they curled and piled up, with straight parts connecting back to the source of sulfide. Thus, it appears that motility serves the cable bacteria in establishing and keeping optimal connections between their distant electron donor and acceptors in a dynamic sediment environment. IMPORTANCE This study reports on the motility of cable bacteria, capable of transmitting electrons over centimeter distances. It gives us a new insight into their behavior in sediments and explains previously puzzling findings. Cable bacteria greatly influence their environment, and this article adds significantly to the body of knowledge about this organism. PMID:27084019

  3. Identification of a MAP 2-like ATP-binding protein associated with axoplasmic vesicles that translocate on isolated microtubules

    PubMed Central

    1986-01-01

    Axoplasmic vesicles were purified and observed to translocate on isolated microtubules in an ATP-dependent, trypsin-sensitive manner, implying that ATP-binding polypeptides essential for force generation were present on the vesicle surface. To identify these proteins [alpha 32P]8-azidoadenosine 5'-triphosphate ([alpha 32P]8-N3ATP), a photoaffinity analogue of ATP, was used. The results presented here identify and characterize a vesicle-associated polypeptide having a relative molecular mass of 292 kD that bound [alpha 32P]8-N3ATP. The incorporation of label is ultraviolet light-dependent and ATP- sensitive. Moreover, the 292-kD polypeptide could be isolated in association with vesicles or microtubules, depending on the conditions used, and the data indicate that the 292-kD polypeptide is similar to mammalian brain microtubule-associated protein 2 (MAP 2) for the following reasons: The 292-kD polypeptide isolated from either squid axoplasm or optic lobe cross-reacts with antiserum to porcine brain MAP 2. Furthermore, it purifies with taxol-stabilized microtubules and is released with salt. Based on these characteristics, the 292-kD polypeptide is distinct from the known force-generating molecules myosin and flagellar dynein, as well as the 110-130-kD kinesin-like polypeptides that have recently been described (Brady, S. T., 1985, Nature (Lond.), 317:73-75; Vale, R. D., T. S. Reese, and M. P. Sheetz, 1985b, Cell, 42:39-50; Scholey, J. M., M. E. Porter, P. M. Grissom, and J. R. McIntosh, 1985, Nature (Lond.), 318:483-486). Because the 292-kD polypeptide binds ATP and is associated with vesicles that translocate on purified MAP-free microtubules in an ATP-dependent fashion, it is therefore believed to be involved in vesicle-microtubule interactions that promote organelle motility. PMID:3091608

  4. Physical basis of large microtubule aster growth

    PubMed Central

    Ishihara, Keisuke; Korolev, Kirill S; Mitchison, Timothy J

    2016-01-01

    Microtubule asters - radial arrays of microtubules organized by centrosomes - play a fundamental role in the spatial coordination of animal cells. The standard model of aster growth assumes a fixed number of microtubules originating from the centrosomes. However, aster morphology in this model does not scale with cell size, and we recently found evidence for non-centrosomal microtubule nucleation. Here, we combine autocatalytic nucleation and polymerization dynamics to develop a biophysical model of aster growth. Our model predicts that asters expand as traveling waves and recapitulates all major aspects of aster growth. With increasing nucleation rate, the model predicts an explosive transition from stationary to growing asters with a discontinuous jump of the aster velocity to a nonzero value. Experiments in frog egg extract confirm the main theoretical predictions. Our results suggest that asters observed in large fish and amphibian eggs are a meshwork of short, unstable microtubules maintained by autocatalytic nucleation and provide a paradigm for the assembly of robust and evolvable polymer networks. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.19145.001 PMID:27892852

  5. Polyribosome targeting to microtubules: enrichment of specific mRNAs in a reconstituted microtubule preparation from sea urchin embryos

    PubMed Central

    1994-01-01

    A subset of mRNAs, polyribosomes, and poly(A)-binding proteins copurify with microtubules from sea urchin embryos. Several lines of evidence indicate that the interaction of microtubules with ribosomes is specific: a distinct stalk-like structure appears to mediate their association; ribosomes bind to microtubules with a constant stoichiometry through several purification cycles; and the presence of ribosomes in these preparations depends on the presence of intact microtubules. Five specific mRNAs are enriched with the microtubule- bound ribosomes, indicating that translation of specific proteins may occur on the microtubule scaffolding in vivo. PMID:7962079

  6. Binding of microtubule protein to DNA and chromatin: possibility of simultaneous linkage of microtubule to nucleic and assembly of the microtubule structure.

    PubMed Central

    Villasante, A; Corces, V G; Manso-Martínez, R; Avila, J

    1981-01-01

    Microtubule protein binds to DNA through microtubule associated polypeptides (MAPs). Among MAPs there is one high molecular weight polypeptide (MAP2) which interacts with DNA fundamentally through certain polynucleotide sequences. This interaction is not affected by the presence of histones and other chromosomal proteins. DNA can associate to assembled microtubules and when a determinate DNA/protein ratio is reached the nucleic acid behaves as a microtubule associated molecule. The nucleic acid fragments which preferentially bind to microtubules have been isolated and characterized. These fragments contain DNA regions enriched in repetitive sequences that hybridizes preferentially to the pericentromeric zone of metaphase chromosomes. These results give further support to the model of interaction microtubule-chromosome based upon the mediator function of the microtubule associated proteins. Images PMID:7232207

  7. Rapid intracellular motility and dynamic membrane events in an Antarctic foraminifer.

    PubMed

    Bowser, S S; DeLaca, T E

    1985-10-01

    Some properties of cytoplasmic transport in a cold-adapted (Antarctic) organism are reported for the first time. Phase-contrast light microscopy of Astrammina rara, an arenaceous foraminiferan protozoan, reveals that the saltatory transport of cytoplasmic granules in reticulopods occurs bidirectionally and at rates up to 7.5-micron/s. Extracellularly attached latex microspheres are rapidly translocated on the reticulopodial surface, thus demonstrating membrane fluidity at low (-1.8 degrees C) ambient temperatures. Rapid extension/withdrawal and branching/fusing of pseudopodia further illustrate dynamic plasma membrane activity at subzero temperatures. Immunofluorescence microscopy with an antibody monospecific for tubulin shows that these pseudopods contain microtubules. The motility of this cold-adapted foraminifer therefore appears fully comparable to the motility of allogromiid foraminifers from temperate waters.

  8. Insights into the structure and function of ciliary and flagellar doublet microtubules: tektins, Ca2+-binding proteins, and stable protofilaments.

    PubMed

    Linck, Richard; Fu, Xiaofeng; Lin, Jianfeng; Ouch, Christna; Schefter, Alexandra; Steffen, Walter; Warren, Peter; Nicastro, Daniela

    2014-06-20

    Cilia and flagella are conserved, motile, and sensory cell organelles involved in signal transduction and human disease. Their scaffold consists of a 9-fold array of remarkably stable doublet microtubules (DMTs), along which motor proteins transmit force for ciliary motility and intraflagellar transport. DMTs possess Ribbons of three to four hyper-stable protofilaments whose location, organization, and specialized functions have been elusive. We performed a comprehensive analysis of the distribution and structural arrangements of Ribbon proteins from sea urchin sperm flagella, using quantitative immunobiochemistry, proteomics, immuno-cryo-electron microscopy, and tomography. Isolated Ribbons contain acetylated α-tubulin, β-tubulin, conserved protein Rib45, >95% of the axonemal tektins, and >95% of the calcium-binding proteins, Rib74 and Rib85.5, whose human homologues are related to the cause of juvenile myoclonic epilepsy. DMTs contain only one type of Ribbon, corresponding to protofilaments A11-12-13-1 of the A-tubule. Rib74 and Rib85.5 are associated with the Ribbon in the lumen of the A-tubule. Ribbons contain a single ∼5-nm wide filament, composed of equimolar tektins A, B, and C, which interact with the nexin-dynein regulatory complex. A summary of findings is presented, and the functions of Ribbon proteins are discussed in terms of the assembly and stability of DMTs, ciliary motility, and other microtubule systems.

  9. Transport Properties of Melanosomes along Microtubules Interpreted by a Tug-of-War Model with Loose Mechanical Coupling

    PubMed Central

    Bouzat, Sebastián; Levi, Valeria; Bruno, Luciana

    2012-01-01

    In this work, we explored theoretically the transport of organelles driven along microtubules by molecular motors of opposed polarities using a stochastic model that considers a Langevin dynamics for the cargo, independent cargo-motor linkers and stepping motion for the motors. It has been recently proposed that the stiffness of the motor plays an important role when multiple motors collectively transport a cargo. Therefore, we considered in our model the recently reported values for the stiffness of the cargo-motor linker determined in living cells (∼0.01 pN/nm, [1]) which is significantly lower than the motor stiffness obtained in in vitro assays and used in previous studies. Our model could reproduce the multimodal velocity distributions and typical trajectory characteristics including the properties of the reversions in the overall direction of motion observed during melanosome transport along microtubules in Xenopus laevis melanophores. Moreover, we explored the contribution of the different motility states of the cargo-motor system to the different modes of the velocity distributions and could identify the microscopic mechanisms of transport leading to trajectories compatible with those observed in living cells. Finally, by changing the attachment and detachment rates, the model could reproduce the different velocity distributions observed during melanosome transport along microtubules in Xenopus laevis melanophores stimulated for aggregation and dispersion. Our analysis suggests that active tug-of-war processes with loose mechanical coupling can account for several aspects of cargo transport along microtubules in living cells. PMID:22952716

  10. Transport properties of melanosomes along microtubules interpreted by a tug-of-war model with loose mechanical coupling.

    PubMed

    Bouzat, Sebastián; Levi, Valeria; Bruno, Luciana

    2012-01-01

    In this work, we explored theoretically the transport of organelles driven along microtubules by molecular motors of opposed polarities using a stochastic model that considers a Langevin dynamics for the cargo, independent cargo-motor linkers and stepping motion for the motors. It has been recently proposed that the stiffness of the motor plays an important role when multiple motors collectively transport a cargo. Therefore, we considered in our model the recently reported values for the stiffness of the cargo-motor linker determined in living cells (∼0.01 pN/nm,) which is significantly lower than the motor stiffness obtained in in vitro assays and used in previous studies. Our model could reproduce the multimodal velocity distributions and typical trajectory characteristics including the properties of the reversions in the overall direction of motion observed during melanosome transport along microtubules in Xenopus laevis melanophores. Moreover, we explored the contribution of the different motility states of the cargo-motor system to the different modes of the velocity distributions and could identify the microscopic mechanisms of transport leading to trajectories compatible with those observed in living cells. Finally, by changing the attachment and detachment rates, the model could reproduce the different velocity distributions observed during melanosome transport along microtubules in Xenopus laevis melanophores stimulated for aggregation and dispersion. Our analysis suggests that active tug-of-war processes with loose mechanical coupling can account for several aspects of cargo transport along microtubules in living cells.

  11. A novel microtubule-based motor protein (KIF4) for organelle transports, whose expression is regulated developmentally

    PubMed Central

    1994-01-01

    To understand the mechanisms of transport for organelles in the axon, we isolated and sequenced the cDNA encoding KIF4 from murine brain, and characterized the molecule biochemically and immunocytochemically. Complete amino acid sequence analysis of KIF4 and ultrastructural studies of KIF4 molecules expressed in Sf9 cells revealed that the protein contains 1,231 amino acid residues (M(r) 139,550) and that the molecule (116-nm rod with globular heads and tail) consists of three domains: an NH2-terminal globular motor domain, a central alpha-helical stalk domain and a COOH-terminal tail domain. KIF4 protein has the property of nucleotide-dependent binding to microtubules, microtubule- activated ATPase activity, and microtubule plus-end-directed motility. Northern blot analysis and in situ hybridization demonstrated that KIF4 is strongly expressed in juvenile tissues including differentiated young neurons, while its expression is decreased considerably in adult mice except in spleen. Immunocytochemical studies revealed that KIF4 colocalized with membranous organelles both in growth cones of differentiated neurons and in the cytoplasm of cultured fibroblasts. During mitotic phase of cell cycle, KIF4 appears to colocalize with membranous organelles in the mitotic spindle. Hence we conclude that KIF4 is a novel microtubule-associated anterograde motor protein for membranous organelles, the expression of which is regulated developmentally. PMID:7929562

  12. Microtubules move the nucleus to quiescence.

    PubMed

    Laporte, Damien; Sagot, Isabelle

    2014-01-01

    The nucleus is a cellular compartment that hosts several macro-molecular machines displaying a highly complex spatial organization. This tight architectural orchestration determines not only DNA replication and repair but also regulates gene expression. In budding yeast microtubules play a key role in structuring the nucleus since they condition the Rabl arrangement in G1 and chromosome partitioning during mitosis through their attachment to centromeres via the kinetochore proteins. Recently, we have shown that upon quiescence entry, intranuclear microtubules emanating from the spindle pole body elongate to form a highly stable bundle that spans the entire nucleus. Here, we examine some molecular mechanisms that may underlie the formation of this structure. As the intranuclear microtubule bundle causes a profound re-organization of the yeast nucleus and is required for cell survival during quiescence, we discuss the possibility that the assembly of such a structure participates in quiescence establishment.

  13. Mechanical model of kinesin moving on microtubule

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    To, Kiwing; Chou, Ya-Chang; Hsiao, Yi-Feng; Chen, Kuan-Hua

    Kinesins are biomolecules that serve as intercellular motors for carrying cellular cargos along microtubules. Although the mechanism of converting the chemical energy of ATP to mechanical work is not fully understood, the motion of a kinesin on a microtubule has been measured and two different mechanisms, namely the ``hand-over-hand'' and ``inchworm'', has been proposed. The particular shape of kinesin and microtubules suggest a possible mechanism for force generation similar to Brownian ratchet. Using a bead chain connected to two heads that are attracted to a vibrated ratchet plate as a scaled up analog of the kinesinmicrotubule system, we manage to simulate both ``handoverhand'' and ``inchworm'' motion [Chou, et. al., Physica A443, 66 (2015)]. In addition, we find that chain, which play the role of the stalk in a kinesin molecule, can also generate force by interacting with the ratchet plate [Chen, et. al. Phys. Rev. E87, 012711 (2013)].

  14. Orthotropic elastic shell model for buckling of microtubules.

    PubMed

    Wang, C Y; Ru, C Q; Mioduchowski, A

    2006-11-01

    In view of the fact that microtubules exhibit strong anisotropic elastic properties, an orthotropic elastic shell model for microtubules is developed to study buckling behavior of microtubules. The predicted critical pressure is found to agree well with recent unexplained experimental data on pressure-induced buckling of microtubules [Needleman, Phys. Rev. Lett. 93, 198104 (2004); Biophys. J. 89, 3410 (2005)] which are lower than that predicted by the isotropic shell model by four orders of magnitude. General buckling behavior of microtubules under axial compression or radial pressure is studied. The results show that the isotropic shell model greatly overestimates the bucking loads of microtubules, except columnlike axially compressed buckling of long microtubules (of length-to-diameter ratio larger than, say, 150). In particular, the present results also offer a plausible explanation for the length dependency of flexibility of microtubules reported in the literature.

  15. Understanding force-generating microtubule systems through in vitro reconstitution

    PubMed Central

    Kok, Maurits; Dogterom, Marileen

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Microtubules switch between growing and shrinking states, a feature known as dynamic instability. The biochemical parameters underlying dynamic instability are modulated by a wide variety of microtubule-associated proteins that enable the strict control of microtubule dynamics in cells. The forces generated by controlled growth and shrinkage of microtubules drive a large range of processes, including organelle positioning, mitotic spindle assembly, and chromosome segregation. In the past decade, our understanding of microtubule dynamics and microtubule force generation has progressed significantly. Here, we review the microtubule-intrinsic process of dynamic instability, the effect of external factors on this process, and how the resulting forces act on various biological systems. Recently, reconstitution-based approaches have strongly benefited from extensive biochemical and biophysical characterization of individual components that are involved in regulating or transmitting microtubule-driven forces. We will focus on the current state of reconstituting increasingly complex biological systems and provide new directions for future developments. PMID:27715396

  16. Dynamic microtubules and the texture of plant cell walls.

    PubMed

    Lloyd, Clive

    2011-01-01

    The relationship between microtubules and cell-wall texture has had a fitful history in which progress in one area has not been matched by progress in the other. For example, the idea that wall texture arises entirely from self-assembly, independently of microtubules, originated with electron microscopic analyses of fixed cells that gave no clue to the ability of microtubules to reorganize. Since then, live-cell studies have established the surprising dynamicity of plant microtubules involving collisions, changes in angle, parallelization, and rotation of microtubule tracks. Combined with proof that cellulose synthases do track along shifting microtubules, this offers more realistic models for the dynamic influence of microtubules on wall texture than could have been imagined in the electron microscopic era-the era from which most ideas on wall texture originate. This review revisits the classical literature on wall organization from the vantage point of current knowledge of microtubule dynamics.

  17. Micropattern-Guided Assembly of Overlapping Pairs of Dynamic Microtubules

    PubMed Central

    Fourniol, Franck J.; Li, Tai-De; Bieling, Peter; Mullins, R. Dyche; Fletcher, Daniel A.; Surrey, Thomas

    2014-01-01

    Interactions between antiparallel microtubules are essential for the organization of spindles in dividing cells. The ability to form immobilized antiparallel microtubule pairs in vitro, combined with the ability to image them via TIRF microscopy, permits detailed biochemical characterization of microtubule cross-linking proteins and their effects on microtubule dynamics. Here, we describe methods for chemical micropatterning of microtubule seeds on glass surfaces in configurations that specifically promote the formation of antiparallel microtubule overlaps in vitro. We demonstrate that this assay is especially well suited for reconstitution of minimal midzone overlaps stabilized by the antiparallel microtubule cross-linking protein PRC1 and its binding partners. The micropatterning method is suitable for use with a broad range of proteins, and the assay is generally applicable to any microtubule cross-linking protein. PMID:24630116

  18. CFAP54 is required for proper ciliary motility and assembly of the central pair apparatus in mice

    PubMed Central

    McKenzie, Casey W.; Craige, Branch; Kroeger, Tiffany V.; Finn, Rozzy; Wyatt, Todd A.; Sisson, Joseph H.; Pavlik, Jacqueline A.; Strittmatter, Lara; Hendricks, Gregory M.; Witman, George B.; Lee, Lance

    2015-01-01

    Motile cilia and flagella play critical roles in fluid clearance and cell motility, and dysfunction commonly results in the pediatric syndrome primary ciliary dyskinesia (PCD). CFAP221, also known as PCDP1, is required for ciliary and flagellar function in mice and Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, where it localizes to the C1d projection of the central microtubule apparatus and functions in a complex that regulates flagellar motility in a calcium-dependent manner. We demonstrate that the genes encoding the mouse homologues of the other C. reinhardtii C1d complex members are primarily expressed in motile ciliated tissues, suggesting a conserved function in mammalian motile cilia. The requirement for one of these C1d complex members, CFAP54, was identified in a mouse line with a gene-trapped allele. Homozygous mice have PCD characterized by hydrocephalus, male infertility, and mucus accumulation. The infertility results from defects in spermatogenesis. Motile cilia have a structural defect in the C1d projection, indicating that the C1d assembly mechanism requires CFAP54. This structural defect results in decreased ciliary beat frequency and perturbed cilia-driven flow. This study identifies a critical role for CFAP54 in proper assembly and function of mammalian cilia and flagella and establishes the gene-trapped allele as a new model of PCD. PMID:26224312

  19. Evolving tip structures can explain age-dependent microtubule catastrophe.

    PubMed

    Coombes, Courtney E; Yamamoto, Ami; Kenzie, Madeline R; Odde, David J; Gardner, Melissa K

    2013-07-22

    Microtubules are key structural and transport elements in cells. The dynamics at microtubule ends are characterized by periods of slow growth, followed by stochastic switching events termed "catastrophes," in which microtubules suddenly undergo rapid shortening. Growing microtubules are thought to be protected from catastrophe by a GTP-tubulin "cap": GTP-tubulin subunits add to the tips of growing microtubules but are subsequently hydrolyzed to GDP-tubulin subunits once they are incorporated into the microtubule lattice. Loss of the GTP-tubulin cap exposes GDP-tubulin subunits at the microtubule tip, resulting in a catastrophe event. However, the mechanistic basis for sudden loss of the GTP cap, leading to catastrophe, is not known. To investigate microtubule catastrophe events, we performed 3D mechanochemical simulations that account for interactions between neighboring protofilaments. We found that there are two separate factors that contribute to catastrophe events in the 3D simulation: the GTP-tubulin cap size, which settles into a steady-state value that depends on the free tubulin concentration during microtubule growth, and the structure of the microtubule tip. Importantly, 3D simulations predict, and both fluorescence and electron microscopy experiments confirm, that microtubule tips become more tapered as the microtubule grows. This effect destabilizes the tip and ultimately contributes to microtubule catastrophe. Thus, the likelihood of a catastrophe event may be intimately linked to the aging physical structure of the growing microtubule tip. These results have important consequences for catastrophe regulation in cells, as microtubule-associated proteins could promote catastrophe events in part by modifying microtubule tip structures.

  20. Fluorescent microtubules break up under illumination

    PubMed Central

    1988-01-01

    We have synthesized three new fluorescent analogues of tubulin, using fluorescein or rhodamine groups attached to N-hydroxy-succinimidyl esters, and have partially characterized the properties of these analogues. We have also further characterized the tubulin derivatized with dichlorotriazinyl-aminofluorescein that has previously been used in this and other laboratories. Our results show that all four analogues assemble into microtubules which break up when exposed to light of the wavelengths that excite fluorescence. This sensitivity places severe constraints on the use of these analogues in studies of microtubule dynamics. PMID:3417772

  1. Colloidal Stabilization of Neurofilaments and Microtubules

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2002-06-01

    Alzheimer’s disease . To address this problem we used a set of biophysical methods, including atomic force microscopy, to investigate interfilament potentials. There are several main conclusions from the work under this award. First, microtubule associated proteins behave as though they are largely unstructured and can give rise to a long range repulsive force that is predominantly entropic in origin. This is an important finding that provides a biophysical mechanism that explains how microtubule spacing is maintained. Second, treating the unstructured proteins domains

  2. GDP-tubulin incorporation into growing microtubules modulates polymer stability.

    PubMed

    Valiron, Odile; Arnal, Isabelle; Caudron, Nicolas; Job, Didier

    2010-06-04

    Microtubule growth proceeds through the endwise addition of nucleotide-bound tubulin dimers. The microtubule wall is composed of GDP-tubulin subunits, which are thought to come exclusively from the incorporation of GTP-tubulin complexes at microtubule ends followed by GTP hydrolysis within the polymer. The possibility of a direct GDP-tubulin incorporation into growing polymers is regarded as hardly compatible with recent structural data. Here, we have examined GTP-tubulin and GDP-tubulin incorporation into polymerizing microtubules using a minimal assembly system comprised of nucleotide-bound tubulin dimers, in the absence of free nucleotide. We find that GDP-tubulin complexes can efficiently co-polymerize with GTP-tubulin complexes during microtubule assembly. GDP-tubulin incorporation into microtubules occurs with similar efficiency during bulk microtubule assembly as during microtubule growth from seeds or centrosomes. Microtubules formed from GTP-tubulin/GDP-tubulin mixtures display altered microtubule dynamics, in particular a decreased shrinkage rate, apparently due to intrinsic modifications of the polymer disassembly properties. Thus, although microtubules polymerized from GTP-tubulin/GDP-tubulin mixtures or from homogeneous GTP-tubulin solutions are both composed of GDP-tubulin subunits, they have different dynamic properties, and this may reveal a novel form of microtubule "structural plasticity."

  3. Microtubules and the endoplasmic reticulum are highly interdependent structures

    PubMed Central

    1986-01-01

    The interrelationships of the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), microtubules, and intermediate filaments were studied in the peripheral regions of thin, spread fibroblasts, epithelial, and vascular endothelial cells in culture. We combined a fluorescent dye staining technique to localize the ER with immunofluorescence to localize microtubules or intermediate filaments in the same cell. Microtubules and the ER are sparse in the lamellipodia, but intermediate filaments are usually completely absent. These relationships indicate that microtubules and the ER advance into the lamellipodia before intermediate filaments. We observed that microtubules and tubules of the ER have nearly identical distributions in lamellipodia, where new extensions of both are taking place. We perturbed microtubules by nocodazole, cold temperature, or hypotonic shock, and observed the effects on the ER distribution. On the basis of our observations in untreated cells and our experiments with microtubule perturbation, we conclude that microtubules and the ER are highly interdependent in two ways: (a) polymerization of individual microtubules and extension of individual ER tubules occur together at the level of resolution of the fluorescence microscope, and (b) depolymerization of microtubules does not disrupt the ER network in the short term (15 min), but prolonged absence of microtubules (2 h) leads to a slow retraction of the ER network towards the cell center, indicating that over longer periods of time, the extended state of the entire ER network requires the microtubule system. PMID:3533956

  4. Microfabricated systems and assays for studying the cytoskeletal organization, micromechanics, and motility patterns of cancerous cells

    DOE PAGES

    Huda, Sabil; Pilans, Didzis; Makurath, Monika; ...

    2014-08-28

    Cell motions are driven by coordinated actions of the intracellular cytoskeleton – actin, microtubules (MTs) and substrate/focal adhesions (FAs). This coordination is altered in metastatic cancer cells resulting in deregulated and increased cellular motility. Microfabrication tools, including photolithography, micromolding, microcontact printing, wet stamping and microfluidic devices have emerged as a powerful set of experimental tools with which to probe and define the differences in cytoskeleton organization/dynamics and cell motility patterns in non-metastatic and metastatic cancer cells. In this paper, we discuss four categories of microfabricated systems: (i) micropatterned substrates for studying of cell motility sub-processes (for example, MT targeting ofmore » FAs or cell polarization); (ii) systems for studying cell mechanical properties, (iii) systems for probing overall cell motility patterns within challenging geometric confines relevant to metastasis (for example, linear and ratchet geometries), and (iv) microfluidic devices that incorporate co-cultures of multiple cell types and chemical gradients to mimic in vivo intravasation/extravasation steps of metastasis. Finally, together, these systems allow for creating controlled microenvironments that not only mimic complex soft tissues, but are also compatible with live cell high-resolution imaging and quantitative analysis of single cell behavior.« less

  5. Microfabricated systems and assays for studying the cytoskeletal organization, micromechanics, and motility patterns of cancerous cells

    SciTech Connect

    Huda, Sabil; Pilans, Didzis; Makurath, Monika; Hermans, Thomas M.; Kandere-Grzybowska, Kristiana; Grzybowski, Bartosz A.

    2014-08-28

    Cell motions are driven by coordinated actions of the intracellular cytoskeleton – actin, microtubules (MTs) and substrate/focal adhesions (FAs). This coordination is altered in metastatic cancer cells resulting in deregulated and increased cellular motility. Microfabrication tools, including photolithography, micromolding, microcontact printing, wet stamping and microfluidic devices have emerged as a powerful set of experimental tools with which to probe and define the differences in cytoskeleton organization/dynamics and cell motility patterns in non-metastatic and metastatic cancer cells. In this paper, we discuss four categories of microfabricated systems: (i) micropatterned substrates for studying of cell motility sub-processes (for example, MT targeting of FAs or cell polarization); (ii) systems for studying cell mechanical properties, (iii) systems for probing overall cell motility patterns within challenging geometric confines relevant to metastasis (for example, linear and ratchet geometries), and (iv) microfluidic devices that incorporate co-cultures of multiple cell types and chemical gradients to mimic in vivo intravasation/extravasation steps of metastasis. Finally, together, these systems allow for creating controlled microenvironments that not only mimic complex soft tissues, but are also compatible with live cell high-resolution imaging and quantitative analysis of single cell behavior.

  6. Self-organized cell motility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Du, Xinxin; Doubrovinski, Konstantin

    2011-03-01

    Cell migration plays a key role in a wide range of biological phenomena, such as morphogenesis, chemotaxis, and wound healing. Cell locomotion relies on the cytoskeleton, a meshwork of filamentous proteins, intrinsically out of thermodynamic equilibrium and cross-linked by molecular motors, proteins that turn chemical energy into mechanical work. In the course of locomotion, cells remain polarized, i.e. they retain a single direction of motion in the absence of external cues. Traditionally, polarization has been attributed to intracellular signaling. However, recent experiments show that polarization may be a consequence of self-organized cytoskeletal dynamics. Our aim is to elucidate the mechanisms by which persistent unidirectional locomotion may arise through simple mechanical interactions of the cytoskeletal proteins. To this end, we develop a simple physical description of cytoskeletal dynamics. We find that the proposed description accounts for a range of phenomena associated with cell motility, including spontaneous polarization, persistent unidirectional motion, and the co-existence of motile and non-motile states.

  7. Fundoplication improves disordered esophageal motility.

    PubMed

    Heider, T Ryan; Behrns, Kevin E; Koruda, Mark J; Shaheen, Nicholas J; Lucktong, Tananchai A; Bradshaw, Barbara; Farrell, Timothy M

    2003-02-01

    Patients with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and disordered esophageal motility are at risk for postoperative dysphagia, and are often treated with partial (270-degree) fundoplication as a strategy to minimize postoperative swallowing difficulties. Complete (360-degree) fundoplication, however, may provide more effective and durable reflux protection over time. Recently we reported that postfundoplication dysphagia is uncommon, regardless of preoperative manometric status and type of fundoplication. To determine whether esophageal function improves after fundoplication, we measured postoperative motility in patients in whom disordered esophageal motility had been documented before fundoplication. Forty-eight of 262 patients who underwent laparoscopic fundoplication between 1995 and 2000 satisfied preoperative manometric criteria for disordered esophageal motility (distal esophageal peristaltic amplitude < or =30 mm Hg and/or peristaltic frequency < or =80%). Of these, 19 had preoperative manometric assessment at our facility and consented to repeat study. Fifteen (79%) of these patients had a complete fundoplication and four (21%) had a partial fundoplication. Each patient underwent repeat four-channel esophageal manometry 29.5 +/- 18.4 months (mean +/- SD) after fundoplication. Distal esophageal peristaltic amplitude and peristaltic frequency were compared to preoperative data by paired t test. After fundoplication, mean peristaltic amplitude in the distal esophagus increased by 47% (56.8 +/- 30.9 mm Hg to 83.5 +/- 36.5 mm Hg; P < 0.001) and peristaltic frequency improved by 33% (66.4 +/- 28.7% to 87.6 +/- 16.3%; P < 0.01). Normal esophageal motor function was present in 14 patients (74%) after fundoplication, whereas in five patients the esophageal motor function remained abnormal (2 improved, 1 worsened, and 2 remained unchanged). Three patients with preoperative peristaltic frequencies of 0%, 10%, and 20% improved to 84%, 88%, and 50%, respectively

  8. Vesicle deformation by microtubules: A phase diagram

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Emsellem, Virginie; Cardoso, Olivier; Tabeling, Patrick

    1998-10-01

    The experimental investigation of vesicles deformed by the growth of encapsulated microtubules shows that the axisymmetric morphologies can be classified into ovals, lemons, φ, cherries, dumbbells, and pearls. A geometrical phase diagram is established. Numerical minimization of the elastic energy of the membrane reproduces satisfactorily well the observed morphologies and the corresponding phase diagram.

  9. Discodermolide interferes with the binding of tau protein to microtubules.

    PubMed

    Kar, Santwana; Florence, Gordon J; Paterson, Ian; Amos, Linda A

    2003-03-27

    We investigated whether discodermolide, a novel antimitotic agent, affects the binding to microtubules of tau protein repeat motifs. Like taxol, the new drug reduces the proportion of tau that pellets with microtubules. Despite their differing structures, discodermolide, taxol and tau repeats all bind to a site on beta-tubulin that lies within the microtubule lumen and is crucial in controlling microtubule assembly. Low concentrations of tau still bind strongly to the outer surfaces of preformed microtubules when the acidic C-terminal regions of at least six tubulin dimers are available for interaction with each tau molecule; otherwise binding is very weak.

  10. Microtubule Initiation from the Nuclear Surface Controls Cortical Microtubule Growth Polarity and Orientation in Arabidopsis thaliana

    PubMed Central

    Ambrose, Chris; Wasteneys, Geoffrey O.

    2014-01-01

    The nuclear envelope in plant cells has long been known to be a microtubule organizing center (MTOC), but its influence on microtubule organization in the cell cortex has been unclear. Here we show that nuclear MTOC activity favors the formation of longitudinal cortical microtubule (CMT) arrays. We used green fluorescent protein (GFP)-tagged gamma tubulin-complex protein 2 (GCP2) to identify nuclear MTOC activity and GFP-tagged End-Binding Protein 1b (EB1b) to track microtubule growth directions. We found that microtubules initiate from nuclei and enter the cortex in two directions along the long axis of the cell, creating bipolar longitudinal CMT arrays. Such arrays were observed in all cell types showing nuclear MTOC activity, including root hairs, recently divided cells in root tips, and the leaf epidermis. In order to confirm the causal nature of nuclei in bipolar array formation, we displaced nuclei by centrifugation, which generated a corresponding shift in the bipolarity split point. We also found that bipolar CMT arrays were associated with bidirectional trafficking of vesicular components to cell ends. Together, these findings reveal a conserved function of plant nuclear MTOCs and centrosomes/spindle pole bodies in animals and fungi, wherein all structures serve to establish polarities in microtubule growth. PMID:25008974

  11. Motor protein and microtubule mechanics: Application of a novel high-resolution optical trapping technique

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allersma, Miriam W.

    Using optical tweezers and a novel detection technique (a quadrant photodiode at the back focal plane or, BFP-QD), this thesis investigates two problems in biophysics, ncd motility and microtubule flexural rigidity. We use optically trapped microspheres to probe the samples. The technique detects the displacements of the microspheres relative to the trap center by monitoring the laser intensity shifts in the back focal plane of the microscope condenser. We use a quadrant diode to detect the shifts, which are due to far-field interference between the trapping laser and scattered laser light from the trapped object. The method yields high-resolution (nm-spatial and μsec-temporal), two-dimensional data, which is largely independent of trap position in the field of view. We first studied the motility of ncd, a kinesin-related motor protein. Motor proteins are able to harness the energy of ATP hydrolysis to perform mechanical work for the cell. Many ncd molecules were adsorbed onto silica microspheres and their motions along the microtubule surface lattice were observed with the BFP-QD method. Since the method is two-dimensional, we were able to monitor axial and lateral motions simultaneously. The average axial velocity was 230 +/- 30 nm/sec (average +/- SD). The high temporal resolution allowed us to investigate dynamical parameters. Spectral analysis showed an increase in viscous drag near the surface for ncd-driven microspheres. In addition, we found that the binding of the motors to microtubules in the presence of the nonhydrolyzable nucleotide adenylylimidodiphosphate caused an increase in the motor elastic constraint. Using a dual optical trap configuration in conjunction with the BFP-QD, we also investigated the elastic properties of taxol-stabilized microtubules. Cytoskeletal filaments are responsible for myriad structural cell functions. Our results were not readily interpreted by a standard bent strut treatment because of the finite size of the microspheres

  12. The family-specific K-loop influences the microtubule on-rate but not the superprocessivity of kinesin-3 motors.

    PubMed

    Soppina, Virupakshi; Verhey, Kristen J

    2014-07-15

    The kinesin-3 family (KIF) is one of the largest among the kinesin superfamily and an important driver of a variety of cellular transport events. Whereas all kinesins contain the highly conserved kinesin motor domain, different families have evolved unique motor features that enable different mechanical and functional outputs. A defining feature of kinesin-3 motors is the presence of a positively charged insert, the K-loop, in loop 12 of their motor domains. However, the mechanical and functional output of the K-loop with respect to processive motility of dimeric kinesin-3 motors is unknown. We find that, surprisingly, the K-loop plays no role in generating the superprocessive motion of dimeric kinesin-3 motors (KIF1, KIF13, and KIF16). Instead, we find that the K-loop provides kinesin-3 motors with a high microtubule affinity in the motor's ADP-bound state, a state that for other kinesins binds only weakly to the microtubule surface. A high microtubule affinity results in a high landing rate of processive kinesin-3 motors on the microtubule surface. We propose that the family-specific K-loop contributes to efficient kinesin-3 cargo transport by enhancing the initial interaction of dimeric motors with the microtubule track.

  13. Experimental protocols for and studies of the effects of surface passivation and water isotopes on the gliding speed of microtubules propelled by kinesin-1

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maloney, Roger Andrew

    This dissertation explores how the kinesin-1 and microtubule system is affected by surface passivation and water isotopes. Surface passivation was found to affect the gliding speed that microtubules exhibit in the gliding motility assay and the lengths of microtubules supported by the passivation. It was also found that gliding speeds of microtubules are very sensitive to temperature changes. Studies changing the water isotope were a first attempt to investigate if changing the solvent changed the osmotic pressure of the solution kinesin and microtubules were in. No osmotic pressure changes were observed, however, the experiments using different isotopes of water did illuminate the possibility that kinesin may be sensitive to viscosity changes in the solvent. This experiment also suggests further experiments that can be specifically designed to probe osmotic pressure changes. This thesis was also the first thesis ever, to the best of the author's knowledge, to be done in a completely open format. All information and notebook entries that are related to it, as well as the thesis itself, can be found on the website OpenWetWare. The thesis can also be found there including all the different versions that went into its editing. The philosophy and process of making data open and accessible to every one is also discussed.

  14. Loop formation of microtubules during gliding at high density

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Lynn; Tüzel, Erkan; Ross, Jennifer L.

    2011-09-01

    The microtubule cytoskeleton, including the associated proteins, forms a complex network essential to multiple cellular processes. Microtubule-associated motor proteins, such as kinesin-1, travel on microtubules to transport membrane bound vesicles across the crowded cell. Other motors, such as cytoplasmic dynein and kinesin-5, are used to organize the cytoskeleton during mitosis. In order to understand the self-organization processes of motors on microtubules, we performed filament-gliding assays with kinesin-1 motors bound to the cover glass with a high density of microtubules on the surface. To observe microtubule organization, 3% of the microtubules were fluorescently labeled to serve as tracers. We find that microtubules in these assays are not confined to two dimensions and can cross one other. This causes microtubules to align locally with a relatively short correlation length. At high density, this local alignment is enough to create 'intersections' of perpendicularly oriented groups of microtubules. These intersections create vortices that cause microtubules to form loops. We characterize the radius of curvature and time duration of the loops. These different behaviors give insight into how crowded conditions, such as those in the cell, might affect motor behavior and cytoskeleton organization.

  15. Dual Role for Microtubules in Regulating Cortical Contractility during Cytokinesis

    PubMed Central

    Murthy, Kausalya; Wadsworth, Patricia

    2008-01-01

    Microtubules stimulate contractile ring formation in the equatorial cortex and simultaneously suppress contractility in the polar cortex; how they accomplish these differing activities is incompletely understood. We measured the behavior of GFP-actin in mammalian cells treated with nocodazole under conditions that either completely eliminate microtubules or selectively disassemble astral microtubules. Selective disassembly of astral microtubules resulted functional contractile rings that were wider than controls and had altered dynamic activity, as measured by FRAP. Complete microtubule disassembly or selective loss of astral microtubules resulted in wave-like contractile behavior of actin in the non-equatorial cortex and mislocalization of myosin II and Rho. FRAP experiments showed that both contractility and actin polymerization contributed to the wave-like behavior of actin. Wave-like, contractile behavior in anaphase cells was Rho-dependent. We conclude that dynamic astral microtubules function to suppress Rho activation in the nonequatorial cortex, limiting the contractile activity of the polar cortex. PMID:18559890

  16. Expansion and Polarity Sorting in Microtubule-Dynein Bundles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zemel, A.; Mogilner, A.

    Interactions of multiple molecular motors with dynamicpolymers, such as actin and microtubules, form the basis for many processes in the cell cytoskeleton. One example is the active `sorting' of microtubule bundles by dynein molecular motors into aster-like arrays of microtubules; in these bundles dynein motors cross-link and slide neighboring microtubules apart. A number of models have been suggested to quantify the active dynamics of cross-linked bundles of polar filaments. In the case of densely packed bundles, however, a major complication arises from the fact that each microtubule interacts with multiple neighboring filaments. To explicitly take these interactions into account we performed detailed computer simulations in which the equations of motion for all microtubules in the bundle were iteratively solved. Our simulations demonstrate the phenomenon of polarity sorting and reveal the variable-rate of the concurrent bundle expansion and its dependence on the nature of the microtubule-motor interactions.

  17. Cortical microtubule contacts position the spindle in C. elegans embryos.

    PubMed

    Kozlowski, Cleopatra; Srayko, Martin; Nedelec, Francois

    2007-05-04

    Interactions between microtubules and the cell cortex play a critical role in positioning organelles in a variety of biological contexts. Here we used Caenorhabditis elegans as a model system to study how cortex-microtubule interactions position the mitotic spindle in response to polarity cues. Imaging EBP-2::GFP and YFP::alpha-tubulin revealed that microtubules shrink soon after cortical contact, from which we propose that cortical adaptors mediate microtubule depolymerization energy into pulling forces. We also observe association of dynamic microtubules to form astral fibers that persist, despite the catastrophe events of individual microtubules. Computer simulations show that these effects, which are crucially determined by microtubule dynamics, can explain anaphase spindle oscillations and posterior displacement in 3D.

  18. Mathematical modeling of microtubule dynamics: insights into physiology and disease.

    PubMed

    Buxton, Gavin A; Siedlak, Sandra L; Perry, George; Smith, Mark A

    2010-12-01

    Computer models of microtubule dynamics have provided the basis for many of the theories on the cellular mechanics of the microtubules, their polymerization kinetics, and the diffusion of tubulin and tau. In the three-dimensional model presented here, we include the effects of tau concentration and the hydrolysis of GTP-tubulin to GDP-tubulin and observe the emergence of microtubule dynamic instability. This integrated approach simulates the essential physics of microtubule dynamics in a cellular environment. The model captures the structure of the microtubules as they undergo steady state dynamic instabilities in this simplified geometry, and also yields the average number, length, and cap size of the microtubules. The model achieves realistic geometries and simulates cellular structures found in degenerating neurons in disease states such as Alzheimer disease. Further, this model can be used to simulate microtubule changes following the addition of antimitotic drugs which have recently attracted attention as chemotherapeutic agents.

  19. Characterizing and engineering microtubule properties for use in hybrid nanodevices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jeune-Smith, Yolaine

    The emergence of nanotechnology in materials science research has had a major impact in biotechnology. Nature provides novel materials and structures that can be redesigned and reassembled for engineering purposes. One system in particular is the intracellular transport system consisting of the kinesin motor protein and microtubule. For synthetic devices, either the bead geometry (kinesin motors walking along a microtubule coated surface) or the gliding geometry (microtubules gliding over a kinesin-coated surface) is used. Molecular shuttles, utilizing the gliding geometry, have the potential for use in hybrid nanodevices such as biosensors. The kinesin-powered molecular shuttle has been extensively studied. Advances have been made in controlling activation of the kinesin motors, guiding movement of kinesin motors and cargo loading onto the molecular shuttles. In this dissertation the interest in molecular shuttle development is extended with a research focus on the microtubule filament. The microtubule is a central element in the molecular shuttle. The sensing capabilities and limitations of molecular shuttles are tied to the microtubules. It would be desired to have nanodevices with molecular shuttles of predictable size, speed and lifetime. Three materials properties of the microtubules are examined. First, the microtubule length distribution is measured and compared to the length distribution of synthetic polymers. Post polymerization processing techniques, shearing and annealing, are utilized to try to reduce the polydispersity index of the microtubule length distribution. Second, the effect of kinesin activity on the lifetime of the microtubules is observed and quantified. Degradation of microtubules is monitored as a function of kinesin activity and time. Lastly, the effect of cargo loading on microtubule gliding speed is measured to gain insight on the mechanism of cargo attachment. These property behaviors will play a role in the final development of

  20. The cytokineplast: purified, stable, and functional motile machinery from human blood polymorphonuclear leukocytes

    PubMed Central

    Malawista, SE; De Boisfleury Chevance, A

    1982-01-01

    We examined the formation of motile, chemotactically active, anucleate fragments from human blood polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMN, granulocytes), induced by the brief application of heat. These granule-poor fragments are former protopods (leading fronts, lamellipodia) that become uncoupled from the main body of the cell and leave it, at first with a connecting filament that breaks and seals itself. The usual random orientation of such filaments can be controlled by preorientation of cells in a gradient of the chemotactic peptide, N-formylmethionylleucylphenylalanine (F-Met-Leu-Phe) (2x10(-9) M- 1x10(-8)). Cytochalsin B, 2.5-5 μg/ml, prevents fragment formation; colchicine, 10(-5) M, does not. In scanning electron micrographs, fragments are ruffled and the cell body rounded up and rather smooth. In transmission electron micrographs, fragments contain microfilaments but lack centrioles and microtubules. Like intact cells, both bound and free fragments can respond chemotactically to an erythrocyte destroyed by laser microirradiation (necrotaxis); the free, anucleate fragments may do so repeatedly, even after having been held overnight at ambient temperatures. We propse the name cytokineplast for the result of this self-purification of motile apparatus. The exodus of the motile machinery from the granulocyte requires anchoring of the bulk of the cell to glass and uncoupling, which may involve heat-induced dysfunction of the centrosome. In ultrastructural studies of the centrosomal region after heat, centriolar structure remains intact, but pericentriolar osmiophilic material appears condensed, and microtubules are sparse. These changes are found in all three blood cell types examined: PMN, eosinophil, and monocyte. Of these, the first two make fragments under our conditions; the more sluggish monocyte does not. Uncoupling is further linked to centrosomal dysfunction by the observation that colchicines-treated granulocytes (10(-5)M, to destroy the centrosome

  1. The Microtubule Regulatory Protein Stathmin Is Required to Maintain the Integrity of Axonal Microtubules in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Duncan, Jason E.; Lytle, Nikki K.; Zuniga, Alfredo; Goldstein, Lawrence S. B.

    2013-01-01

    Axonal transport, a form of long-distance, bi-directional intracellular transport that occurs between the cell body and synaptic terminal, is critical in maintaining the function and viability of neurons. We have identified a requirement for the stathmin (stai) gene in the maintenance of axonal microtubules and regulation of axonal transport in Drosophila. The stai gene encodes a cytosolic phosphoprotein that regulates microtubule dynamics by partitioning tubulin dimers between pools of soluble tubulin and polymerized microtubules, and by directly binding to microtubules and promoting depolymerization. Analysis of stai function in Drosophila, which has a single stai gene, circumvents potential complications with studies performed in vertebrate systems in which mutant phenotypes may be compensated by genetic redundancy of other members of the stai gene family. This has allowed us to identify an essential function for stai in the maintenance of the integrity of axonal microtubules. In addition to the severe disruption in the abundance and architecture of microtubules in the axons of stai mutant Drosophila, we also observe additional neurological phenotypes associated with loss of stai function including a posterior paralysis and tail-flip phenotype in third instar larvae, aberrant accumulation of transported membranous organelles in stai deficient axons, a progressive bang-sensitive response to mechanical stimulation reminiscent of the class of Drosophila mutants used to model human epileptic seizures, and a reduced adult lifespan. Reductions in the levels of Kinesin-1, the primary anterograde motor in axonal transport, enhance these phenotypes. Collectively, our results indicate that stai has an important role in neuronal function, likely through the maintenance of microtubule integrity in the axons of nerves of the peripheral nervous system necessary to support and sustain long-distance axonal transport. PMID:23840848

  2. Motile properties of the bi-directional kinesin-5 Cin8 are affected by phosphorylation in its motor domain

    PubMed Central

    Shapira, Ofer; Gheber, Larisa

    2016-01-01

    The Saccharomyces cerevisiae kinesin-5 Cin8 performs essential mitotic functions in spindle assembly and anaphase B spindle elongation. Recent work has shown that Cin8 is a bi-directional motor which moves towards the minus-end of microtubules (MTs) under high ionic strength (IS) conditions and changes directionality in low IS conditions and when bound between anti-parallel microtubules. Previous work from our laboratory has also indicated that Cin8 is differentially phosphorylated during late anaphase at cyclin-dependent kinase 1 (Cdk1)-specific sites located in its motor domain. In vivo, such phosphorylation causes Cin8 detachment from spindles and reduces the spindle elongation rate, while maintaining proper spindle morphology. To study the effect of phosphorylation on Cin8 motor function, we examined in vitro motile properties of wild type Cin8, as well as its phosphorylation using phospho-deficient and phospho-mimic variants, in a single molecule fluorescence motility assay. Analysis was performed on whole cell extracts and on purified Cin8 samples. We found that addition of negative charges in the phospho-mimic mutant weakened the MT-motor interaction, increased motor velocity and promoted minus-end-directed motility. These results indicate that phosphorylation in the catalytic domain of Cin8 regulates its motor function. PMID:27216310

  3. 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.

  4. Reversal of axonal growth defects in an extraocular fibrosis model by engineering the kinesin–microtubule interface

    PubMed Central

    Minoura, Itsushi; Takazaki, Hiroko; Ayukawa, Rie; Saruta, Chihiro; Hachikubo, You; Uchimura, Seiichi; Hida, Tomonobu; Kamiguchi, Hiroyuki; Shimogori, Tomomi; Muto, Etsuko

    2016-01-01

    Mutations in human β3-tubulin (TUBB3) cause an ocular motility disorder termed congenital fibrosis of the extraocular muscles type 3 (CFEOM3). In CFEOM3, the oculomotor nervous system develops abnormally due to impaired axon guidance and maintenance; however, the underlying mechanism linking TUBB3 mutations to axonal growth defects remains unclear. Here, we investigate microtubule (MT)-based motility in vitro using MTs formed with recombinant TUBB3. We find that the disease-associated TUBB3 mutations R262H and R262A impair the motility and ATPase activity of the kinesin motor. Engineering a mutation in the L12 loop of kinesin surprisingly restores a normal level of motility and ATPase activity on MTs carrying the R262A mutation. Moreover, in a CFEOM3 mouse model expressing the same mutation, overexpressing the suppressor mutant kinesin restores axonal growth in vivo. Collectively, these findings establish the critical role of the TUBB3-R262 residue for mediating kinesin interaction, which in turn is required for normal axonal growth and brain development. PMID:26775887

  5. Microtubules Growth Rate Alteration in Human Endothelial Cells

    PubMed Central

    Alieva, Irina B.; Zemskov, Evgeny A.; Kireev, Igor I.; Gorshkov, Boris A.; Wiseman, Dean A.; Black, Stephen M.; Verin, Alexander D.

    2010-01-01

    To understand how microtubules contribute to the dynamic reorganization of the endothelial cell (EC) cytoskeleton, we established an EC model expressing EB3-GFP, a protein that marks microtubule plus-ends. Using this model, we were able to measure microtubule growth rate at the centrosome region and near the cell periphery of a single human EC and in the EC monolayer. We demonstrate that the majority of microtubules in EC are dynamic, the growth rate of their plus-ends is highest in the internal cytoplasm, in the region of the centrosome. Growth rate of microtubule plus-ends decreases from the cell center toward the periphery. Our data suggest the existing mechanism(s) of local regulation of microtubule plus-ends growth in EC. Microtubule growth rate in the internal cytoplasm of EC in the monolayer is lower than that of single EC suggesting the regulatory effect of cell-cell contacts. Centrosomal microtubule growth rate distribution in single EC indicated the presence of two subpopulations of microtubules with “normal” (similar to those in monolayer EC) and “fast” (three times as much) growth rates. Our results indicate functional interactions between cell-cell contacts and microtubules. PMID:20445745

  6. Microtubules growth rate alteration in human endothelial cells.

    PubMed

    Alieva, Irina B; Zemskov, Evgeny A; Kireev, Igor I; Gorshkov, Boris A; Wiseman, Dean A; Black, Stephen M; Verin, Alexander D

    2010-01-01

    To understand how microtubules contribute to the dynamic reorganization of the endothelial cell (EC) cytoskeleton, we established an EC model expressing EB3-GFP, a protein that marks microtubule plus-ends. Using this model, we were able to measure microtubule growth rate at the centrosome region and near the cell periphery of a single human EC and in the EC monolayer. We demonstrate that the majority of microtubules in EC are dynamic, the growth rate of their plus-ends is highest in the internal cytoplasm, in the region of the centrosome. Growth rate of microtubule plus-ends decreases from the cell center toward the periphery. Our data suggest the existing mechanism(s) of local regulation of microtubule plus-ends growth in EC. Microtubule growth rate in the internal cytoplasm of EC in the monolayer is lower than that of single EC suggesting the regulatory effect of cell-cell contacts. Centrosomal microtubule growth rate distribution in single EC indicated the presence of two subpopulations of microtubules with "normal" (similar to those in monolayer EC) and "fast" (three times as much) growth rates. Our results indicate functional interactions between cell-cell contacts and microtubules.

  7. Neurodegeneration and microtubule dynamics: death by a thousand cuts

    PubMed Central

    Dubey, Jyoti; Ratnakaran, Neena; Koushika, Sandhya P.

    2015-01-01

    Microtubules form important cytoskeletal structures that play a role in establishing and maintaining neuronal polarity, regulating neuronal morphology, transporting cargo, and scaffolding signaling molecules to form signaling hubs. Within a neuronal cell, microtubules are found to have variable lengths and can be both stable and dynamic. Microtubule associated proteins, post-translational modifications of tubulin subunits, microtubule severing enzymes, and signaling molecules are all known to influence both stable and dynamic pools of microtubules. Microtubule dynamics, the process of interconversion between stable and dynamic pools, and the proportions of these two pools have the potential to influence a wide variety of cellular processes. Reduced microtubule stability has been observed in several neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), and tauopathies like Progressive Supranuclear Palsy. Hyperstable microtubules, as seen in Hereditary Spastic Paraplegia (HSP), also lead to neurodegeneration. Therefore, the ratio of stable and dynamic microtubules is likely to be important for neuronal function and perturbation in microtubule dynamics might contribute to disease progression. PMID:26441521

  8. Tubulin acetylation protects long-lived microtubules against mechanical ageing.

    PubMed

    Portran, Didier; Schaedel, Laura; Xu, Zhenjie; Théry, Manuel; Nachury, Maxence V

    2017-04-01

    Long-lived microtubules endow the eukaryotic cell with long-range transport abilities. While long-lived microtubules are acetylated on Lys40 of α-tubulin (αK40), acetylation takes place after stabilization and does not protect against depolymerization. Instead, αK40 acetylation has been proposed to mechanically stabilize microtubules. Yet how modification of αK40, a residue exposed to the microtubule lumen and inaccessible to microtubule-associated proteins and motors, could affect microtubule mechanics remains an open question. Here we develop FRET-based assays that report on the lateral interactions between protofilaments and find that αK40 acetylation directly weakens inter-protofilament interactions. Congruently, αK40 acetylation affects two processes largely governed by inter-protofilament interactions, reducing the nucleation frequency and accelerating the shrinkage rate. Most relevant to the biological function of acetylation, microfluidics manipulations demonstrate that αK40 acetylation enhances flexibility and confers resilience against repeated mechanical stresses. Thus, unlike deacetylated microtubules that accumulate damage when subjected to repeated stresses, long-lived microtubules are protected from mechanical ageing through their acquisition of αK40 acetylation. In contrast to other tubulin post-translational modifications that act through microtubule-associated proteins, motors and severing enzymes, intraluminal acetylation directly tunes the compliance and resilience of microtubules.

  9. Molecular architecture of the Dam1 complex–microtubule interaction

    PubMed Central

    Legal, Thibault; Zou, Juan; Sochaj, Alicja; Rappsilber, Juri

    2016-01-01

    Mitosis is a highly regulated process that allows the equal distribution of the genetic material to the daughter cells. Chromosome segregation requires the formation of a bipolar mitotic spindle and assembly of a multi-protein structure termed the kinetochore to mediate attachments between condensed chromosomes and spindle microtubules. In budding yeast, a single microtubule attaches to each kinetochore, necessitating robustness and processivity of this kinetochore–microtubule attachment. The yeast kinetochore-localized Dam1 complex forms a direct interaction with the spindle microtubule. In vitro, the Dam1 complex assembles as a ring around microtubules and couples microtubule depolymerization with cargo movement. However, the subunit organization within the Dam1 complex, its higher-order oligomerization and how it interacts with microtubules remain under debate. Here, we used chemical cross-linking and mass spectrometry to define the architecture and subunit organization of the Dam1 complex. This work reveals that both the C termini of Duo1 and Dam1 subunits interact with the microtubule and are critical for microtubule binding of the Dam1 complex, placing Duo1 and Dam1 on the inside of the ring structure. Integrating this information with available structural data, we provide a coherent model for how the Dam1 complex self-assembles around microtubules. PMID:26962051

  10. Size scaling of microtubule asters in confinement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pelletier, James; Field, Christine; Krutkramelis, Kaspars; Fakhri, Nikta; Oakey, John; Gatlin, Jay; Mitchison, Timothy

    Microtubule asters are radial arrays of microtubules (MTs) nucleated around organizing centers (MTOCs). Across a wide range of cell types and sizes, aster positioning influences cellular organization. To investigate aster size and positioning, we reconstituted dynamic asters in Xenopus cytoplasmic extract, confined in fluorous oil microfluidic emulsions. In large droplets, we observed centering of MTOCs. In small droplets, we observed a breakdown in natural positioning, with MTOCs at the droplet edge and buckled or bundled MTs along the interface. In different systems, asters are positioned by different forces, such as pushing due to MT polymerization, or pulling due to bulk or cortical dynein. To estimate different contributions to aster positioning, we biochemically perturbed dynactin function, or MT or actin polymerization. We used carbon nanotubes to measure molecular motions and forces in asters. These experimental results inform quantitative biophysical models of aster size and positioning in confinement. JFP was supported by a Fannie and John Hertz Graduate Fellowship.

  11. Mechanical splitting of microtubules into protofilament bundles by surface-bound kinesin-1

    PubMed Central

    VanDelinder, Virginia; Adams, Peter G.; Bachand, George D.

    2016-01-01

    The fundamental biophysics of gliding microtubule (MT) motility by surface-tethered kinesin-1 motor proteins has been widely studied, as well as applied to capture and transport analytes in bioanalytical microdevices. In these systems, phenomena such as molecular wear and fracture into shorter MTs have been reported due the mechanical forces applied on the MT during transport. In the present work, we show that MTs can be split longitudinally into protofilament bundles (PFBs) by the work performed by surface-bound kinesin motors. We examine the properties of these PFBs using several techniques (e.g., fluorescence microscopy, SEM, AFM), and show that the PFBs continue to be mobile on the surface and display very high curvature compared to MT. Further, higher surface density of kinesin motors and shorter kinesin-surface tethers promote PFB formation, whereas modifying MT with GMPCPP or higher paclitaxel concentrations did not affect PFB formation. PMID:28000714

  12. Live Cell Imaging Reveals Structural Associations between the Actin and Microtubule Cytoskeleton in Arabidopsis [W] [OA

    PubMed Central

    Sampathkumar, Arun; Lindeboom, Jelmer J.; Debolt, Seth; Gutierrez, Ryan; Ehrhardt, David W.; Ketelaar, Tijs; Persson, Staffan

    2011-01-01

    In eukaryotic cells, the actin and microtubule (MT) cytoskeletal networks are dynamic structures that organize intracellular processes and facilitate their rapid reorganization. In plant cells, actin filaments (AFs) and MTs are essential for cell growth and morphogenesis. However, dynamic interactions between these two essential components in live cells have not been explored. Here, we use spinning-disc confocal microscopy to dissect interaction and cooperation between cortical AFs and MTs in Arabidopsis thaliana, utilizing fluorescent reporter constructs for both components. Quantitative analyses revealed altered AF dynamics associated with the positions and orientations of cortical MTs. Reorganization and reassembly of the AF array was dependent on the MTs following drug-induced depolymerization, whereby short AFs initially appeared colocalized with MTs, and displayed motility along MTs. We also observed that light-induced reorganization of MTs occurred in concert with changes in AF behavior. Our results indicate dynamic interaction between the cortical actin and MT cytoskeletons in interphase plant cells. PMID:21693695

  13. Mechanical splitting of microtubules into protofilament bundles by surface-bound kinesin-1

    SciTech Connect

    VanDelinder, Virginia; Adams, Peter G.; Bachand, George D.

    2016-12-21

    The fundamental biophysics of gliding microtubule (MT) motility by surface-tethered kinesin-1 motor proteins has been widely studied, as well as applied to capture and transport analytes in bioanalytical microdevices. In these systems, phenomena such as molecular wear and fracture into shorter MTs have been reported due the mechanical forces applied on the MT during transport. In the present work, we show that MTs can be split longitudinally into protofilament bundles (PFBs) by the work performed by surface-bound kinesin motors. We examine the properties of these PFBs using several techniques (e.g., fluorescence microscopy, SEM, AFM), and show that the PFBs continue to be mobile on the surface and display very high curvature compared to MT. Further, higher surface density of kinesin motors and shorter kinesin-surface tethers promote PFB formation, whereas modifying MT with GMPCPP or higher paclitaxel concentrations did not affect PFB formation.

  14. Mechanical splitting of microtubules into protofilament bundles by surface-bound kinesin-1

    DOE PAGES

    VanDelinder, Virginia; Adams, Peter G.; Bachand, George D.

    2016-12-21

    The fundamental biophysics of gliding microtubule (MT) motility by surface-tethered kinesin-1 motor proteins has been widely studied, as well as applied to capture and transport analytes in bioanalytical microdevices. In these systems, phenomena such as molecular wear and fracture into shorter MTs have been reported due the mechanical forces applied on the MT during transport. In the present work, we show that MTs can be split longitudinally into protofilament bundles (PFBs) by the work performed by surface-bound kinesin motors. We examine the properties of these PFBs using several techniques (e.g., fluorescence microscopy, SEM, AFM), and show that the PFBs continuemore » to be mobile on the surface and display very high curvature compared to MT. Further, higher surface density of kinesin motors and shorter kinesin-surface tethers promote PFB formation, whereas modifying MT with GMPCPP or higher paclitaxel concentrations did not affect PFB formation.« less

  15. Dynamic Concentration of Motors in Microtubule Arrays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nédélec, François; Surrey, Thomas; Maggs, A. C.

    2001-04-01

    We present experimental and theoretical studies of the dynamics of molecular motors in microtubule arrays and asters. By solving a convection-diffusion equation we find that the density profile of motors in a two-dimensional aster is characterized by continuously varying exponents. Simulations are used to verify the assumptions of the continuum model. We observe the concentration profiles of kinesin moving in quasi-two-dimensional artificial asters by fluorescent microscopy and compare with our theoretical results.

  16. Self-organization of microtubules and motors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ndlec, F. J.; Surrey, T.; Maggs, A. C.; Leibler, S.

    1997-09-01

    Cellular structures are established and maintained through a dynamic interplay between assembly and regulatory processes. Self-organization of molecular components provides a variety of possible spatial structures: the regulatory machinery chooses the most appropriate to express a given cellular function. Here we study the extent and the characteristics of self-organization using microtubules and molecular motors as a model system. These components are known to participate in the formation of many cellular structures, such as the dynamic asters found in mitotic and meiotic spindles. Purified motors and microtubules have previously been observed to form asters in vitro. We have reproduced this result with a simple system consisting solely of multi-headed constructs of the motor protein kinesin and stabilized microtubules. We show that dynamic asters can also be obtained from a homogeneous solution of tubulin and motors. By varying the relative concentrations of the components, we obtain a variety of self-organized structures. Further, by studying this process in a constrained geometry of micro-fabricated glass chambers, we demonstrate that the same final structure can be reached through different assembly `pathways'.

  17. Molecular Communication: Simulation of Microtubule Topology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moore, Michael J.; Enomoto, Akihiro; Nakano, Tadashi; Kayasuga, Atsushi; Kojima, Hiroaki; Sakakibara, Hitoshi; Oiwa, Kazuhiro; Suda, Tatsuya

    Molecular communication is one method for communication among biological nanomachines. Nanomachines are artificial or biological nano-scale devices that perform simple computation, sensing, or actuation. Future applications using nanomachines may require various communication mechanisms. For example, broadcast is one primitive communication for transmission from one sender to many receivers. In this paper, we discuss preliminary work on designing a molecular communication system that is adapted from the molecular motor transport mechanism existing in biological cells. In the proposed molecular motor mechanism, a sender releases information molecules, and molecular motors transport the information molecules along microtubule filaments to receiver nanomachines up to hundreds of micrometers away. This paper describes some possible arrangements for microtubule filaments and simulations to evaluate sending of one information molecule to many receivers. The simulation results indicate that the proposed molecular motor system transports simulated information molecules (100nm radius spheres) more quickly than a diffusion-only communication and that placement of receivers at the plus-end of microtubules results in lower propagation delay.

  18. 21 CFR 876.1725 - Gastrointestinal motility monitoring system.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Gastrointestinal motility monitoring system. 876... Gastrointestinal motility monitoring system. (a) Identification. A gastrointestinal motility monitoring system is a... esophageal motility monitor and tube, the gastrointestinal motility (electrical) system, and...

  19. 21 CFR 876.1725 - Gastrointestinal motility monitoring system.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2013-04-01 2013-04-01 false Gastrointestinal motility monitoring system. 876... Gastrointestinal motility monitoring system. (a) Identification. A gastrointestinal motility monitoring system is a... esophageal motility monitor and tube, the gastrointestinal motility (electrical) system, and...

  20. 21 CFR 876.1725 - Gastrointestinal motility monitoring system.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Gastrointestinal motility monitoring system. 876... Gastrointestinal motility monitoring system. (a) Identification. A gastrointestinal motility monitoring system is a... esophageal motility monitor and tube, the gastrointestinal motility (electrical) system, and...

  1. 21 CFR 876.1725 - Gastrointestinal motility monitoring system.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2014-04-01 2014-04-01 false Gastrointestinal motility monitoring system. 876... Gastrointestinal motility monitoring system. (a) Identification. A gastrointestinal motility monitoring system is a... esophageal motility monitor and tube, the gastrointestinal motility (electrical) system, and...

  2. 21 CFR 876.1725 - Gastrointestinal motility monitoring system.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2012-04-01 2012-04-01 false Gastrointestinal motility monitoring system. 876... Gastrointestinal motility monitoring system. (a) Identification. A gastrointestinal motility monitoring system is a... esophageal motility monitor and tube, the gastrointestinal motility (electrical) system, and...

  3. A novel microtubule-binding motif identified in a high molecular weight microtubule-associated protein from Trypanosoma brucei

    PubMed Central

    1992-01-01

    The major component of the cytoskeleton of the parasitic hemoflagellate Trypanosoma brucei is a membrane skeleton which consists of a single layer of tightly spaced microtubules. This array encloses the entire cell body, and it is apposed to, and connected with, the overlying cell membrane. The microtubules of this array contain numerous microtubule- associated proteins. Prominent among those is a family of high molecular weight, repetitive proteins which consist to a large extent of tandemly arranged 38-amino acid repeat units. The binding of one of these proteins, MARP-1, to microtubules has now been characterized in vitro and in vivo. MARP-1 binds to microtubules via tubulin domains other than the COOH-termini used by microtubule-associated proteins from mammalian brain, e.g., MAP2 or Tau. In vitro binding assays using recombinant protein, as well as transfection of mammalian cell lines, have established that the repetitive 38-amino acid repeat units represent a novel microtubule-binding motif. This motif is very similar in length to those of the mammalian microtubule-associated proteins Tau, MAP2, and MAP-U, but both its sequence and charge are different. The observation that the microtubule-binding motifs both of the neural and the trypanosomal proteins are of similar length may reflect the fact that both mediate binding to the same repetitive surface, the microtubule, while their sequence and charge differences are in agreement with the observation that they interact with different domains of the tubulins. PMID:1348252

  4. A novel microtubule-binding motif identified in a high molecular weight microtubule-associated protein from Trypanosoma brucei.

    PubMed

    Hemphill, A; Affolter, M; Seebeck, T

    1992-04-01

    The major component of the cytoskeleton of the parasitic hemoflagellate Trypanosoma brucei is a membrane skeleton which consists of a single layer of tightly spaced microtubules. This array encloses the entire cell body, and it is apposed to, and connected with, the overlying cell membrane. The microtubules of this array contain numerous microtubule-associated proteins. Prominent among those is a family of high molecular weight, repetitive proteins which consist to a large extent of tandemly arranged 38-amino acid repeat units. The binding of one of these proteins, MARP-1, to microtubules has now been characterized in vitro and in vivo. MARP-1 binds to microtubules via tubulin domains other than the COOH-termini used by microtubule-associated proteins from mammalian brain, e.g., MAP2 or Tau. In vitro binding assays using recombinant protein, as well as transfection of mammalian cell lines, have established that the repetitive 38-amino acid repeat units represent a novel microtubule-binding motif. This motif is very similar in length to those of the mammalian microtubule-associated proteins Tau, MAP2, and MAP-U, but both its sequence and charge are different. The observation that the microtubule-binding motifs both of the neural and the trypanosomal proteins are of similar length may reflect the fact that both mediate binding to the same repetitive surface, the microtubule, while their sequence and charge differences are in agreement with the observation that they interact with different domains of the tubulins.

  5. Arabidopsis AUGMIN Subunit8 Is a Microtubule Plus-End Binding Protein That Promotes Microtubule Reorientation in Hypocotyls[C][W

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Lingyan; Wang, Linhai; Zheng, Min; Cao, Hong; Ding, Lian; Zhang, Xiaolan; Fu, Ying

    2013-01-01

    In plant cells, cortical microtubules provide tracks for cellulose-synthesizing enzymes and regulate cell division, growth, and morphogenesis. The role of microtubules in these essential cellular processes depends on the spatial arrangement of the microtubules. Cortical microtubules are reoriented in response to changes in cell growth status and cell shape. Therefore, an understanding of the mechanism that underlies the change in microtubule orientation will provide insight into plant cell growth and morphogenesis. This study demonstrated that AUGMIN subunit8 (AUG8) in Arabidopsis thaliana is a novel microtubule plus-end binding protein that participates in the reorientation of microtubules in hypocotyls when cell elongation slows down. AUG8 bound to the plus ends of microtubules and promoted tubulin polymerization in vitro. In vivo, AUG8 was recruited to the microtubule branch site immediately before nascent microtubules branched out. It specifically associated with the plus ends of growing cortical microtubules and regulated microtubule dynamics, which facilitated microtubule reorientation when microtubules changed their growth trajectory or encountered obstacle microtubules during microtubule reorientation. This study thus reveals a novel mechanism underlying microtubule reorientation that is critical for modulating cell elongation in Arabidopsis. PMID:23735294

  6. PHLP2 is essential and plays a role in ciliogenesis and microtubule assembly in Tetrahymena thermophila.

    PubMed

    Bregier, Cezary; Krzemień-Ojak, Lucja; Włoga, Dorota; Jerka-Dziadosz, Maria; Joachimiak, Ewa; Batko, Katarzyna; Filipiuk, Iwona; Smietanka, Urszula; Gaertig, Jacek; Fabczak, Stanisław; Fabczak, Hanna

    2013-11-01

    Recent studies have implicated the phosducin-like protein-2 (PHLP2) in regulation of CCT, a chaperonin whose activity is essential for folding of tubulin and actin. However, the exact molecular function of PHLP2 is unclear. Here we investigate the significance of PHLP2 in a ciliated unicellular model, Tetrahymena thermophila, by deleting its single homolog, Phlp2p. Cells lacking Phlp2p became larger and died within 96 h. Overexpressed Phlp2p-HA localized to cilia, basal bodies, and cytosol without an obvious change in the phenotype. Despite similar localization, overexpressed GFP-Phlp2p caused a dominant-negative effect. Cells overproducing GFP-Phlp2p had decreased rates of proliferation, motility and phagocytosis, as compared to wild type cells or cells overproducing a non-tagged Phlp2p. Growing GFP-Phlp2p-overexpressing cells had fewer cilia and, when deciliated, failed to regenerate cilia, indicating defects in cilia assembly. Paclitaxel-treated GFP-Phlp2p cells failed to elongate cilia, indicating a change in the microtubules dynamics. The pattern of ciliary and cytosolic tubulin isoforms on 2D gels differed between wild type and GFP-Phlp2p-overexpressing cells. Thus, in Tetrahymena, PhLP2 is essential and under specific experimental conditions its activity affects tubulin and microtubule-dependent functions including cilia assembly.

  7. Human TUBB3 mutations perturb microtubule dynamics, kinesin interactions, and axon guidance

    PubMed Central

    Tischfield, Max A.; Baris, Hagit N.; Wu, Chen; Rudolph, Guenther; Van Maldergem, Lionel; He, Wei; Chan, Wai-Man; Andrews, Caroline; Demer, Joseph L.; Robertson, Richard L.; Mackey, David A.; Ruddle, Jonathan B.; Bird, Thomas D.; Gottlob, Irene; Pieh, Christina; Traboulsi, Elias I.; Pomeroy, Scott L.; Hunter, David G.; Soul, Janet S.; Newlin, Anna; Sabol, Louise J.; Doherty, Edward J.; de Uzcátegui, Clara E.; de Uzcátegui, Nicolas; Collins, Mary Louise Z.; Sener, Emin C.; Wabbels, Bettina; Hellebrand, Heide; Meitinger, Thomas; de Berardinis, Teresa; Magli, Adriano; Schiavi, Costantino; Pastore-Trossello, Marco; Koc, Feray; Wong, Agnes M.; Levin, Alex V.; Geraghty, Michael T.; Descartes, Maria; Flaherty, Maree; Jamieson, Robyn V.; Møller, H. U.; Meuthen, Ingo; Callen, David F.; Kerwin, Janet; Lindsay, Susan; Meindl, Alfons; Gupta, Mohan L.; Pellman, David; Engle, Elizabeth C.

    2011-01-01

    We report that eight heterozygous missense mutations in TUBB3, encoding the neuron-specific β-tubulin isotype III, result in a spectrum of human nervous system disorders we now call the TUBB3 syndromes. Each mutation causes the ocular motility disorder CFEOM3, whereas some also result in intellectual and behavioral impairments, facial paralysis, and/or later-onset axonal sensorimotor polyneuropathy. Neuroimaging reveals a spectrum of abnormalities including hypoplasia of oculomotor nerves, and dysgenesis of the corpus callosum, anterior commissure, and corticospinal tracts. A knock-in disease mouse model reveals axon guidance defects without evidence of cortical cell migration abnormalities. We show the disease-associated mutations can impair tubulin heterodimer formation in vitro, although folded mutant heterodimers can still polymerize into microtubules. Modeling each mutation in yeast tubulin demonstrates that all alter dynamic instability whereas a subset disrupts the interaction of microtubules with kinesin motors. These findings demonstrate normal TUBB3 is required for axon guidance and maintenance in mammals. PMID:20074521

  8. Dimer model for Tau proteins bound in microtubule bundles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hall, Natalie; Kluber, Alexander; Hayre, N. Robert; Singh, Rajiv; Cox, Daniel

    2013-03-01

    The microtubule associated protein tau is important in nucleating and maintaining microtubule spacing and structure in neuronal axons. Modification of tau is implicated as a later stage process in Alzheimer's disease, but little is known about the structure of tau in microtubule bundles. We present preliminary work on a proposed model for tau dimers in microtubule bundles (dimers are the minimal units since there is one microtubule binding domain per tau). First, a model of tau monomer was created and its characteristics explored using implicit solvent molecular dynamics simulation. Multiple simulations yield a partially collapsed form with separate positively/negatively charged clumps, but which are a factor of two smaller than required by observed microtubule spacing. We argue that this will elongate in dimer form to lower electrostatic energy at a cost of entropic ``spring'' energy. We will present preliminary results on steered molecular dynamics runs on tau dimers to estimate the actual force constant. Supported by US NSF Grant DMR 1207624.

  9. General theory for the mechanics of confined microtubule asters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ma, Rui; Laan, Liedewij; Dogterom, Marileen; Pavin, Nenad; Jülicher, Frank

    2014-01-01

    In cells, dynamic microtubules organize into asters or spindles to assist positioning of organelles. Two types of forces are suggested to contribute to the positioning process: (i) microtubule-growth based pushing forces; and (ii) motor protein mediated pulling forces. In this paper, we present a general theory to account for aster positioning in a confinement of arbitrary shape. The theory takes account of microtubule nucleation, growth, catastrophe, slipping, as well as interaction with cortical force generators. We calculate microtubule distributions and forces acting on microtubule organizing centers in a sphere and in an ellipsoid. Positioning mechanisms based on both pushing forces and pulling forces can be distinguished in our theory for different parameter regimes or in different geometries. In addition, we investigate positioning of microtubule asters in the case of asymmetric distribution of motors. This analysis enables us to characterize situations relevant for Caenorrhabditis elegans embryos.

  10. Cellular Samurai: katanin and the severing of microtubules.

    PubMed

    Quarmby, L

    2000-08-01

    Recent biochemical studies of the AAA ATPase, katanin, provide a foundation for understanding how microtubules might be severed along their length. These in vitro studies are complemented by a series of recent reports of direct in vivo observation of microtubule breakage, which indicate that the in vitro phenomenon of catalysed microtubule severing is likely to be physiological. There is also new evidence that microtubule severing by katanin is important for the production of non-centrosomal microtubules in cells such as neurons and epithelial cells. Although it has been difficult to establish the role of katanin in mitosis, new genetic evidence indicates that a katanin-like protein, MEI-1, plays an essential role in meiosis in C. elegans. Finally, new proteins involved in the severing of axonemal microtubules have been discovered in the deflagellation system of Chlamydomonas.

  11. Asymmetric behavior of severed microtubule ends after ultraviolet-microbeam irradiation of individual microtubules in vitro

    SciTech Connect

    Walker, R.A.; Inoue, S.; Salmon, E.D.

    1989-03-01

    The molecular basis of microtubule dynamic instability is controversial, but is thought to be related to a GTP cap. A key prediction of the GTP cap model is that the proposed labile GDP-tubulin core will rapidly dissociate if the GTP-tubulin cap is lost. We have tested this prediction by using a UV microbeam to cut the ends from elongating microtubules. Phosphocellulose-purified tubulin was assembled onto the plus and minus ends of sea urchin flagellar axoneme fragments at 21-22 degrees C. The assembly dynamics of individual microtubules were recorded in real time using video microscopy. When the tip of an elongating plus end microtubule was cut off, the severed plus end microtubule always rapidly shortened back to the axoneme at the normal plus end rate. However, when the distal tip of an elongating minus end microtubule was cut off, no rapid shortening occurred. Instead, the severed minus end resumed elongation at the normal minus end rate. Our results show that some form of stabilizing cap, possibly a GTP cap, governs the transition (catastrophe) from elongation to rapid shortening at the plus end. At the minus end, a simple GTP cap is not sufficient to explain the observed behavior unless UV induces immediate recapping of minus, but not plus, ends. Another possibility is that a second step, perhaps a structural transformation, is required in addition to GTP cap loss for rapid shortening to occur. This transformation would be favored at plus, but not minus ends, to account for the asymmetric behavior of the ends.

  12. Cortical microtubule arrays are initiated from a nonrandom prepattern driven by atypical microtubule initiation.

    PubMed

    Lindeboom, Jelmer J; Lioutas, Antonios; Deinum, Eva E; Tindemans, Simon H; Ehrhardt, David W; Emons, Anne Mie C; Vos, Jan W; Mulder, Bela M

    2013-03-01

    The ordered arrangement of cortical microtubules in growing plant cells is essential for anisotropic cell expansion and, hence, for plant morphogenesis. These arrays are dismantled when the microtubule cytoskeleton is rearranged during mitosis and reassembled following completion of cytokinesis. The reassembly of the cortical array has often been considered as initiating from a state of randomness, from which order arises at least partly through self-organizing mechanisms. However, some studies have shown evidence for ordering at early stages of array assembly. To investigate how cortical arrays are initiated in higher plant cells, we performed live-cell imaging studies of cortical array assembly in tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum) Bright Yellow-2 cells after cytokinesis and drug-induced disassembly. We found that cortical arrays in both cases did not initiate randomly but with a significant overrepresentation of microtubules at diagonal angles with respect to the cell axis, which coincides with the predominant orientation of the microtubules before their disappearance from the cell cortex in preprophase. In Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) root cells, recovery from drug-induced disassembly was also nonrandom and correlated with the organization of the previous array, although no diagonal bias was observed in these cells. Surprisingly, during initiation, only about one-half of the new microtubules were nucleated from locations marked by green fluorescent protein-γ-tubulin complex protein2-tagged γ-nucleation complexes (γ-tubulin ring complex), therefore indicating that a large proportion of early polymers was initiated by a noncanonical mechanism not involving γ-tubulin ring complex. Simulation studies indicate that the high rate of noncanonical initiation of new microtubules has the potential to accelerate the rate of array repopulation.

  13. High EGFR_1 Inside-Out Activated Inflammation-Induced Motility through SLC2A1-CCNB2-HMMR-KIF11-NUSAP1-PRC1-UBE2C.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Huilei; Wang, Lin; Huang, Juxiang; Jiang, Minghu; Zhang, Xiaoyu; Zhang, Liyuan; Wang, Yangming; Jiang, Zhenfu; Zhang, Zhongjie

    2015-01-01

    48 different Pearson mutual-positive-correlation epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR_1)-activatory molecular feedback, up- and down-stream network was constructed from 171 overlapping of 366 GRNInfer and 223 Pearson under EGFR_1 CC ≥0.25 in high lung adenocarcinoma compared with low human normal adjacent tissues. Our identified EGFR_1 inside-out upstream activated molecular network showed SLC2A1 (solute carrier family 2 (facilitated glucose transporter) member 1), CCNB2 (cyclin B2), HMMR (hyaluronan-mediated motility receptor (RHAMM)), KIF11 (kinesin family member 11), NUSAP1 (nucleolar and spindle associated protein 1), PRC1 (protein regulator of cytokinesis 1), UBE2C (ubiquitin-conjugating enzyme E2C) in high lung adenocarcinoma. EGFR_1 inside-out upstream activated terms network includes intracellular, membrane fraction, cytoplasm, plasma membrane, integral to membrane, basolateral plasma membrane, transmembrane transport, nucleus, cytosol, cell surface; T cell homeostasis, inflammation; microtubule cytoskeleton, embryonic development (sensu Mammalia), cell cycle, mitosis, thymus development, cell division, regulation of cell cycle, Contributed--cellular process--Hs cell cycle KEGG, cytokinesis, M phase, M phase of mitotic cell cycle, estrogen-responsive protein Efp controls cell cycle and breast tumors growth, cell motility, locomotion, locomotory behavior, neoplasm metastasis, spindle pole, spindle microtubule, microtubule motor activity, microtubule-based movement, mitotic spindle organization and biogenesis, mitotic centrosome separation, spindle pole body organization and biogenesis, microtubule-based process, microtubule, cytokinesis after mitosis, mitotic chromosome condensation, establishment of mitotic spindle localization, positive regulation of mitosis, mitotic spindle elongation, spindle organization and biogenesis, positive regulation of exit from mitosis, regulation of cell proliferation, positive regulation of cell proliferation based on

  14. Active gel model of amoeboid cell motility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Callan-Jones, A. C.; Voituriez, R.

    2013-02-01

    We develop a model of amoeboid cell motility based on active gel theory. Modeling the motile apparatus of a eukaryotic cell as a confined layer of finite length of poroelastic active gel permeated by a solvent, we first show that, due to active stress and gel turnover, an initially static and homogeneous layer can undergo a contractile-type instability to a polarized moving state in which the rear is enriched in gel polymer. This agrees qualitatively with motile cells containing an actomyosin-rich uropod at their rear. We find that the gel layer settles into a steadily moving, inhomogeneous state at long times, sustained by a balance between contractility and filament turnover. In addition, our model predicts an optimal value of the gel-substrate adhesion leading to maximum layer speed, in agreement with cell motility assays. The model may be relevant to motility of cells translocating in complex, confining environments that can be mimicked experimentally by cell migration through microchannels.

  15. Sperm motility under conditions of weightlessness.

    PubMed

    Engelmann, U; Krassnigg, F; Schill, W B

    1992-01-01

    The aim of this study was to determine the differences in motility of frozen and thawed bull spermatozoa under conditions of weightlessness compared with ground conditions. The tests were performed within a series of scientific and technologic experiments under microgravity using sounding rockets in the Technologische Experimente unter Schwerelosigkeit (TEXUS) program launched in Kiruna, North Sweden. Using a computerized sperm motility analyzer, significant differences were found in sperm motility under microgravity compared with sperm under gravitational conditions on earth. Computer analysis showed alterations in straight line and curvilinear velocity, as well as in linearity values. The amount of progressively motile spermatozoa, including all spermatozoa with a velocity > 20 microns/second, increased significantly from 24% +/- 9.5% in the reference test to 49% +/- 7.6% in the microgravity test. In conclusion, there is strong evidence that gravity influences sperm motility.

  16. Sunday Driver/JIP3 binds kinesin heavy chain directly and enhances its motility

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Faneng; Zhu, Chuanmei; Dixit, Ram; Cavalli, Valeria

    2011-01-01

    Neuronal development, function and repair critically depend on axonal transport of vesicles and protein complexes, which is mediated in part by the molecular motor kinesin-1. Adaptor proteins recruit kinesin-1 to vesicles via direct association with kinesin heavy chain (KHC), the force-generating component, or via the accessory light chain (KLC). Binding of adaptors to the motor is believed to engage the motor for microtubule-based transport. We report that the adaptor protein Sunday Driver (syd, also known as JIP3 or JSAP1) interacts directly with KHC, in addition to and independently of its known interaction with KLC. Using an in vitro motility assay, we show that syd activates KHC for transport and enhances its motility, increasing both KHC velocity and run length. syd binding to KHC is functional in neurons, as syd mutants that bind KHC but not KLC are transported to axons and dendrites similarly to wild-type syd. This transport does not rely on syd oligomerization with itself or other JIP family members. These results establish syd as a positive regulator of kinesin activity and motility. PMID:21750526

  17. Motor-driven motility of fungal nuclear pores organizes chromosomes and fosters nucleocytoplasmic transport.

    PubMed

    Steinberg, Gero; Schuster, Martin; Theisen, Ulrike; Kilaru, Sreedhar; Forge, Andrew; Martin-Urdiroz, Magdalena

    2012-08-06

    Exchange between the nucleus and the cytoplasm is controlled by nuclear pore complexes (NPCs). In animals, NPCs are anchored by the nuclear lamina, which ensures their even distribution and proper organization of chromosomes. Fungi do not possess a lamina and how they arrange their chromosomes and NPCs is unknown. Here, we show that motor-driven motility of NPCs organizes the fungal nucleus. In Ustilago maydis, Aspergillus nidulans, and Saccharomyces cerevisiae fluorescently labeled NPCs showed ATP-dependent movements at ~1.0 µm/s. In S. cerevisiae and U. maydis, NPC motility prevented NPCs from clustering. In budding yeast, NPC motility required F-actin, whereas in U. maydis, microtubules, kinesin-1, and dynein drove pore movements. In the latter, pore clustering resulted in chromatin organization defects and led to a significant reduction in both import and export of GFP reporter proteins. This suggests that fungi constantly rearrange their NPCs and corresponding chromosomes to ensure efficient nuclear transport and thereby overcome the need for a structural lamina.

  18. A divergent canonical WNT-signaling pathway regulates microtubule dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Ciani, Lorenza; Krylova, Olga; Smalley, Matthew J.; Dale, Trevor C.; Salinas, Patricia C.

    2004-01-01

    Dishevelled (DVL) is associated with axonal microtubules and regulates microtubule stability through the inhibition of the serine/threonine kinase, glycogen synthase kinase 3β (GSK-3β). In the canonical WNT pathway, the negative regulator Axin forms a complex with β-catenin and GSK-3β, resulting in β-catenin degradation. Inhibition of GSK-3β by DVL increases β-catenin stability and TCF transcriptional activation. Here, we show that Axin associates with microtubules and unexpectedly stabilizes microtubules through DVL. In turn, DVL stabilizes microtubules by inhibiting GSK-3β through a transcription- and β-catenin–independent pathway. More importantly, axonal microtubules are stabilized after DVL localizes to axons. Increased microtubule stability is correlated with a decrease in GSK-3β–mediated phosphorylation of MAP-1B. We propose a model in which Axin, through DVL, stabilizes microtubules by inhibiting a pool of GSK-3β, resulting in local changes in the phosphorylation of cellular targets. Our data indicate a bifurcation in the so-called canonical WNT-signaling pathway to regulate microtubule stability. PMID:14734535

  19. Producing Conditional Mutants for Studying Plant Microtubule Function

    SciTech Connect

    Richard Cyr

    2009-09-29

    The cytoskeleton, and in particular its microtubule component, participates in several processes that directly affect growth and development in higher plants. Normal cytoskeletal function requires the precise and orderly arrangement of microtubules into several cell cycle and developmentally specific arrays. One of these, the cortical array, is notable for its role in directing the deposition of cellulose (the most prominent polymer in the biosphere). An understanding of how these arrays form, and the molecular interactions that contribute to their function, is incomplete. To gain a better understanding of how microtubules work, we have been working to characterize mutants in critical cytoskeletal genes. This characterization is being carried out at the subcellular level using vital microtubule gene constructs. In the last year of funding colleagues have discovered that gamma-tubulin complexes form along the lengths of cortical microtubules where they act to spawn new microtubules at a characteristic 40 deg angle. This finding complements nicely the finding from our lab (which was funded by the DOE) showing that microtubule encounters are angle dependent; high angles encounters results in catastrophic collisions while low angle encounters result in favorable zippering. The finding of a 40 deg spawn of new microtubules from extant microtubule, together with aforementioned rules of encounters, insures favorable co-alignment in the array. I was invited to write a New and Views essay on this topic and a PDF is attached (News and Views policy does not permit funding acknowledgments and so I was not allowed to acknowledge support from the DOE).

  20. Vinblastine suppresses dynamics of individual microtubules in living interphase cells.

    PubMed Central

    Dhamodharan, R; Jordan, M A; Thrower, D; Wilson, L; Wadsworth, P

    1995-01-01

    We have characterized the effects of vinblastine on the dynamic instability behavior of individual microtubules in living BS-C-1 cells microinjected with rhodamine-labeled tubulin and have found that at low concentrations (3-64 nM), vinblastine potently suppresses dynamic instability without causing net microtubule depolymerization. Vinblastine suppressed the rates of microtubule growth and shortening, and decreased the frequency of transitions from growth or pause to shortening, also called catastrophe. In vinblastine-treated cells, both the average duration of a pause (a state of attenuated dynamics where neither growth nor shortening could be detected) and the percentage of total time spent in pause were significantly increased. Vinblastine potently decreased dynamicity, a measure of the overall dynamic activity of microtubules, reducing this parameter by 75% at 32 nM. The present work, consistent with earlier in vitro studies, demonstrates that vinblastine kinetically caps the ends of microtubules in living cells and supports the hypothesis that the potent chemotherapeutic action of vinblastine as an antitumor drug is suppression of mitotic spindle microtubule dynamics. Further, the results indicate that molecules that bind to microtubule ends can regulate microtubule dynamic behavior in living cells and suggest that endogenous regulators of microtubule dynamics that work by similar mechanisms may exist in living cells. Images PMID:8534917

  1. Theoretical Description of Microtubule Dynamics in Fission Yeast During Interphase

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oei, Yung-Chin; Jiménez-Dalmaroni, Andrea; Vilfan, Andrej; Duke, Thomas

    2009-03-01

    Fission yeast (S. pombe) is a unicellular organism with a characteristic cylindrical shape. Cell growth during interphase is strongly influenced by microtubule self-organization - a process that has been experimentally well characterised. The microtubules are organized in 3 to 4 bundles, called ``interphase microtubule assemblies'' (IMAs). Each IMA is composed of several microtubules, arranged with their dynamic ``plus'' ends facing the cell tips and their ``minus'' ends overlapping at the cell middle. Although the main protein factors involved in interphase microtubule organization have been identified, an understanding of how their collective interaction with microtubules leads to the organization and structures observed in vivo is lacking. We present a physical model of microtubule dynamics that aims to provide a quantitative description of the self-organization process. First, we solve equations for the microtubule length distribution in steady-state, taking into account the way that a limited tubulin pool affects the nucleation, growth and shrinkage of microtubules. Then we incorporate passive and active crosslinkers (the bundling factor Ase1 and molecular motor Klp2) and investigate the formation of IMA structures. Analytical results are complemented by a 3D stochastic simulation.

  2. INSIGHTS INTO ANTI-PARALLEL MICROTUBULE CROSSLINKING BY PRC1, A CONSERVED NON-MOTOR MICROTUBULE BINDING PROTEIN

    PubMed Central

    Subramanian, Radhika; Wilson-Kubalek, Elizabeth M.; Arthur, Christopher P.; Bick, Matthew J.; Campbell, Elizabeth A.; Darst, Seth A.; Milligan, Ronald A.; Kapoor, Tarun M.

    2010-01-01

    SUMMARY Formation of microtubule architectures, required for cell shape maintenance in yeast, directional cell expansion in plants and cytokinesis in eukaryotes, depends on antiparallel microtubule crosslinking by the conserved MAP65 protein family. Here, we combine structural and single molecule fluorescence methods to examine how PRC1, the human MAP65, crosslinks antiparallel microtubules. We find that PRC1's microtubule binding is mediated by a structured domain with a spectrin-fold and an unstructured Lys/Arg-rich domain. These two domains, at each end of a homodimer, are connected by a linkage that is flexible on single microtubules, but forms well-defined crossbridges between antiparallel filaments. Further, we show that PRC1 crosslinks do not substantially resist filament sliding by motor proteins in vitro. Together, our data show how MAP65s, by combining structural flexibility and rigidity, tune microtubule associations to establish compliant crosslinks that selectively `mark' antiparallel overlap in dynamic cytoskeletal networks. PMID:20691902

  3. Human SAS-6 C-Terminus Nucleates and Promotes Microtubule Assembly in Vitro by Binding to Microtubules.

    PubMed

    Gupta, Hindol; Badarudeen, Binshad; George, Athira; Thomas, Geethu Emily; Gireesh, K K; Manna, Tapas K

    2015-10-20

    Centrioles are essential components of the animal centrosome and play crucial roles in the formation of cilia and flagella. They are cylindrical structures composed of nine triplet microtubules organized around a central cartwheel. Recent studies have identified spindle assembly abnormal protein SAS-6 as a critical component necessary for formation of the cartwheel. However, the molecular details of how the cartwheel participates in centriolar microtubule assembly have not been clearly understood. In this report, we show that the C-terminal tail (residues 470-657) of human SAS-6, HsSAS-6 C, the region that has been shown to extend toward the centriolar wall where the microtubule triplets are organized, nucleated and induced microtubule polymerization in vitro. The N-terminus (residues 1-166) of HsSAS-6, the domain known to be involved in formation of the central hub of the cartwheel, did not, however, exert any effect on microtubule polymerization. HsSAS-6 C bound to the microtubules and localized along the lengths of the microtubules in vitro. Microtubule pull-down and coimmunoprecipitation (Co-IP) experiments with S-phase synchronized HeLa cell lysates showed that the endogenous HsSAS-6 coprecipitated with the microtubules, and it mediated interaction with tubulin. Isothermal calorimetry titration and size exclusion chromatography showed that HsSAS-6 C bound to the αβ-tubulin dimer in vitro. The results demonstrate that HsSAS-6 possesses an intrinsic microtubule assembly promoting activity and further implicate that its outer exposed C-terminal tail may play critical roles in microtubule assembly and stabilizing microtubule attachment with the centriolar cartwheel.

  4. Twelve protofilament taxol-induced microtubules assembled from purified tublin. A synchrotron X-ray scattering study in comparison with glycerol- and map-induced microtubules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andreu, J. M.; Garcia de Ancos, J.; Medrano, F. J.; Gil, R.; Diaz, J. F.; Nogales, E.; Towns-Andrews, E.; Pantos, E.; Bordas, J.

    1991-05-01

    The X-ray solution scattering profiles of taxol microtubules made of purified tubulin and control microtubules, assembled either from purified tubulin in glycerol buffer (a non-specific enhancer of the polymerization of tubulin) or from microtubule protein (a preparation containing tubulin plus microtubule associated proteins), were obtained to 3.3 nm resolution. These profiles show features of the microtubule wall structure which had not been observed in solution before. Comparison of the different profiles indicated that the structure of the microtubule wall is very similar in the three types of microtubules to the resolution of the measurements, however the mean diameter of the taxol microtubules is smaller than that of the control microtubules, by approximately one protofilament less. Actually, only 12 protofilament computer models of microtubules could fit the position of the maxima in the experimental scattering profile of the taxol microtubules. Having only 12 protofilaments implies a discontinuity on the microtubule wall, irrespective of whether the lateral contacts follow the A or B microtubule lattice, and also requires adjustment of the normal lattice to one protofilament axis with respect to the cylinder axis. The fact that the majority of these taxol microtubules assembled from purified tubulin have 12 protofilaments has been visualized by electron micrographs of tannic acid stained microtubule thin sections, and is fully consistent with the microtubule wall projections (fringe patterns) observed in negatively stained and cryo-electron microscopy specimens, which correspond to a 12 protofilament-three start lattice type.

  5. The microtubule plus-end tracking protein ARMADILLO-REPEAT KINESIN1 promotes microtubule catastrophe in Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Eng, Ryan Christopher; Wasteneys, Geoffrey O

    2014-08-01

    Microtubule dynamics are critically important for plant cell development. Here, we show that Arabidopsis thaliana ARMADILLO-REPEAT KINESIN1 (ARK1) plays a key role in root hair tip growth by promoting microtubule catastrophe events. This destabilizing activity appears to maintain adequate free tubulin concentrations in order to permit rapid microtubule growth, which in turn is correlated with uniform tip growth. Microtubules in ark1-1 root hairs exhibited reduced catastrophe frequency and slower growth velocities, both of which were restored by low concentrations of the microtubule-destabilizing drug oryzalin. An ARK1-GFP (green fluorescent protein) fusion protein expressed under its endogenous promoter localized to growing microtubule plus ends and rescued the ark1-1 root hair phenotype. Transient overexpression of ARK1-RFP (red fluorescent protein) increased microtubule catastrophe frequency. ARK1-fusion protein constructs lacking the N-terminal motor domain still labeled microtubules, suggesting the existence of a second microtubule binding domain at the C terminus of ARK1. ARK1-GFP was broadly expressed in seedlings, but mutant phenotypes were restricted to root hairs, indicating that ARK1's function is redundant in cells other than those forming root hairs.

  6. Identification of a novel microtubule-destabilizing motif in CPAP that binds to tubulin heterodimers and inhibits microtubule assembly.

    PubMed

    Hung, Liang-Yi; Chen, Hua-Ling; Chang, Ching-Wen; Li, Bor-Ran; Tang, Tang K

    2004-06-01

    We have previously identified a new centrosomal protein, centrosomal protein 4.1-associated protein (CPAP), which is associated with the gamma-tubulin complex. Here, we report that CPAP carries a novel microtubule-destabilizing motif that not only inhibits microtubule nucleation from the centrosome but also depolymerizes taxol-stabilized microtubules. Deletion mapping and functional analyses have defined a 112-residue CPAP that is necessary and sufficient for microtubule destabilization. This 112-residue CPAP directly recognizes the plus end of a microtubule and inhibits microtubule nucleation from the centrosome. Biochemical and functional analyses revealed that this 112-residue CPAP also binds to tubulin dimers, resulting in the destabilization of microtubules. Using the tetracycline-controlled system (tet-off), we observed that overexpression of this 112-residue CPAP inhibits cell proliferation and induces apoptosis after G2/M arrest. The possible mechanisms of how this 112-residue motif in CPAP that inhibits microtubule nucleation from the centrosome and disassembles preformed microtubules are discussed.

  7. Arabidopsis phospholipase D alpha 1-derived phosphatidic acid regulates microtubule organization and cell development under microtubule-interacting drugs treatment.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Qun; Qu, Yana; Wang, Qing; Song, Ping; Wang, Peipei; Jia, Qianru; Guo, Jinhe

    2017-01-01

    Phospholipase D (PLD) and its product phosphatidic acid (PA) are emerging as essential regulators of cytoskeleton organization in plants. However, the underlying molecular mechanisms of PA-mediated microtubule reorganization in plants remain largely unknown. In this study, we used pharmacological and genetic approaches to analyze the function of Arabidopsis thaliana PLDα1 in the regulation of microtubule organization and cell development in response to microtubule-affecting drugs. Treatment with the microtubule-stabilizing drug paclitaxel resulted in less growth inhibition and decreased rightward slant of roots, longitudinal alignment of microtubules, and enhanced length of hypocotyl epidermal cells in the pldα1 mutant, the phenotype of which was rescued by exogenous application of PA. Moreover, the pldα1 mutant was sensitive to the microtubule-disrupting drugs oryzalin and propyzamide in terms of seedling survival ratio, left-skewing angle of roots and microtubule organization. In addition, both disruption and stabilization of microtubules induced by drugs activated PLDα1 activity. Our findings demonstrate that in A. thaliana, PLDα1/PA might regulate cell development by modulating microtubule organization in an activity-dependent manner.

  8. Control of microtubule nucleation and stability in Madin-Darby canine kidney cells: the occurrence of noncentrosomal, stable detyrosinated microtubules

    PubMed Central

    1987-01-01

    The microtubule-nucleating activity of centrosomes was analyzed in fibroblastic (Vero) and in epithelial cells (PtK2, Madin-Darby canine kidney [MDCK]) by double-immunofluorescence labeling with anti- centrosome and antitubulin antibodies. Most of the microtubules emanated from the centrosomes in Vero cells, whereas the microtubule network of MDCK cells appeared to be noncentrosome nucleated and randomly organized. The pattern of microtubule organization in PtK2 cells was intermediate to the patterns observed in the typical fibroblastic and epithelial cells. The two centriole cylinders were tightly associated and located close to the nucleus in Vero and PtK2 cells. In MDCK cells, however, they were clearly separated and electron microscopy revealed that they nucleated only a few microtubules. The stability of centrosomal and noncentrosomal microtubules was examined by treatment of these different cell lines with various concentrations of nocodazole. 1.6 microM nocodazole induced an almost complete depolymerization of microtubules in Vero cells; some centrosome nucleated microtubules remained in PtK2 cells, while many noncentrosomal microtubules resisted that treatment in MDCK cells. Centrosomal and noncentrosomal microtubules regrew in MDCK cells with similar kinetics after release from complete disassembly by high concentrations of nocodazole (33 microM). During regrowth, centrosomal microtubules became resistant to 1.6 microM nocodazole before the noncentrosomal ones, although the latter eventually predominate. We suggest that in MDCK cells, microtubules grow and shrink as proposed by the dynamic instability model but the presence of factors prevents them from complete depolymerization. This creates seeds for reelongation that compete with nucleation off the centrosome. By using specific antibodies, we have shown that the abundant subset of nocodazole- resistant microtubules in MDCK cells contained detyrosinated alpha- tubulin (glu tubulin). On the other hand

  9. Effects of fluoro-doxorubicin (ME2303) on microtubules: influence of different classes of microtubule-associated proteins.

    PubMed

    Fromes, Y; Gounon, P; Tapiero, H; Fellous, A

    1996-08-01

    Anthracyclines are among the most useful agents for the treatment of neoplastic disease, but their clinical use is limited by progressive cardiomyopathy. A few studies have suggested the role of microtubules for the understanding of this toxicity. By using kinetic and structural studies, we demonstrate the disorganizing action of fluoro-doxorubicin, a novel anthracycline, on the microtubule system. Microtubules have a rich and complex composition in relation to their numerous functions in cells. In the present study, we investigate the role of two major microtubule-associated protein (MAP) families, Tau and MAP2. Both MAP families are responsible for the properties of different classes of microtubules. We show the differential effect of fluoro-doxorubicin on these two classes of microtubules. Furthermore, we show that fluoro-doxorubicin is able to affect the capacity of purified tubulin to form normal microtubules. This study confirms that anthracyclines may interfer with the microtubule organization. We suggest that some classes of microtubules, with regard to their MAP composition, may be affected more specifically in cardiac myocytes.

  10. MARK4 is a novel microtubule-associated proteins/microtubule affinity-regulating kinase that binds to the cellular microtubule network and to centrosomes.

    PubMed

    Trinczek, Bernhard; Brajenovic, Miro; Ebneth, Andreas; Drewes, Gerard

    2004-02-13

    The MARK protein kinases were originally identified by their ability to phosphorylate a serine motif in the microtubule-binding domain of tau that is critical for microtubule binding. Here, we report the cloning and expression of a novel human paralog, MARK4, which shares 75% overall homology with MARK1-3 and is predominantly expressed in brain. Homology is most pronounced in the catalytic domain (90%), and MARK4 readily phosphorylates tau and the related microtubule-associated protein 2 (MAP2) and MAP4. In contrast to the three paralogs that all exhibit uniform cytoplasmic localization, MARK4 colocalizes with the centrosome and with microtubules in cultured cells. Overexpression of MARK4 causes thinning out of the microtubule network, concomitant with a reorganization of microtubules into bundles. In line with these findings, we show that a tandem affinity-purified MARK4 protein complex contains alpha-, beta-, and gamma-tubulin. In differentiated neuroblastoma cells, MARK4 is localized prominently at the tips of neurite-like processes. We suggest that although the four MARK/PAR-1 kinases might play multiple cellular roles in concert with different targets, MARK4 is likely to be directly involved in microtubule organization in neuronal cells and may contribute to the pathological phosphorylation of tau in Alzheimer's disease.

  11. Characterization of the role of calcium in regulating the microtubule-destabilizing activity of MDP25.

    PubMed

    Qin, Tao; Li, Jiejie; Yuan, Ming; Mao, Tonglin

    2012-07-01

    Regulation of cell elongation is important for plant morphogenesis. Many studies have shown that cortical microtubules play crucial roles during cell elongation and that microtubule stability, organization, and dynamics are regulated by microtubule regulatory proteins. Recently, we reported that a novel protein from Arabidopsis, termed microtubule-destabilizing protein 25 (MDP25), functions as a negative regulator of hypocotyl cell elongation. MDP25 destabilizes microtubules and exerts its effect on microtubules as a result of transient elevation of cytosolic calcium levels.

  12. Syntaxin 1C, a soluble form of syntaxin, attenuates membrane recycling by destabilizing microtubules.

    PubMed

    Nakayama, Takahiro; Kamiguchi, Hiroyuki; Akagawa, Kimio

    2012-02-15

    Syntaxin 1C (STX1C), produced by alternative splicing of the stx1A gene, is a soluble syntaxin lacking a SNARE domain and a transmembrane domain. It is unclear how soluble syntaxin can control intracellular membrane trafficking. We found that STX1C affected microtubule (MT) dynamics through its tubulin-binding domain (TBD) and regulated recycling of intracellular vesicles carrying glucose transporter-1 (GLUT1). We demonstrated that the amino acid sequence VRSK of the TBD was important for the interaction between STX1C and tubulin and that wild-type STX1C (STX1C-WT), but not the TBD mutant, reduced the V(max) of glucose transport and GLUT1 translocation to the plasma membrane in FRSK cells. Moreover, by time-lapse analysis, we revealed that STX1C-WT suppressed MT stability and vesicle-transport motility in cells expressing GFP-α-tubulin, whereas TBD mutants had no effect. We also identified that GLUT1 was recycled in the 45 minutes after endocytosis and that GLUT1 vesicles moved along with MTs. Finally, we showed, by a recycling assay and FCM analysis, that STX1C-WT delayed the recycling phase of GLUT1 to PM, without affecting the endocytotic process of GLUT1. These data indicate that STX1C delays the GLUT1 recycling phase by suppressing MT stability and vesicle-transport motility through its TBD, providing the first insight into how soluble syntaxin controls membrane trafficking.

  13. Collective behavior of minus-ended motors in mitotic microtubule asters gliding toward DNA.

    PubMed

    Athale, Chaitanya A; Dinarina, Ana; Nedelec, Francois; Karsenti, Eric

    2014-02-01

    Microtubules (MTs) nucleated by centrosomes form star-shaped structures referred to as asters. Aster motility and dynamics is vital for genome stability, cell division, polarization and differentiation. Asters move either toward the cell center or away from it. Here, we focus on the centering mechanism in a membrane independent system of Xenopus cytoplasmic egg extracts. Using live microscopy and single particle tracking, we find that asters move toward chromatinized DNA structures. The velocity and directionality profiles suggest a random-walk with drift directed toward DNA. We have developed a theoretical model that can explain this movement as a result of a gradient of MT length dynamics and MT gliding on immobilized dynein motors. In simulations, the antagonistic action of the motor species on the radial array of MTs leads to a tug-of-war purely due to geometric considerations and aster motility resembles a directed random-walk. Additionally, our model predicts that aster velocities do not change greatly with varying initial distance from DNA. The movement of asymmetric asters becomes increasingly super-diffusive with increasing motor density, but for symmetric asters it becomes less super-diffusive. The transition of symmetric asters from superdiffusive to diffusive mobility is the result of number fluctuations in bound motors in the tug-of-war. Overall, our model is in good agreement with experimental data in Xenopus cytoplasmic extracts and predicts novel features of the collective effects of motor-MT interactions.

  14. Microtubules Are Essential for Mitochondrial Dynamics–Fission, Fusion, and Motility–in Dictyostelium discoideum

    PubMed Central

    Woods, Laken C.; Berbusse, Gregory W.; Naylor, Kari

    2016-01-01

    Mitochondrial function is dependent upon mitochondrial structure which is in turn dependent upon mitochondrial dynamics, including fission, fusion, and motility. Here we examined the relationship between mitochondrial dynamics and the cytoskeleton in Dictyostelium discoideum. Using time-lapse analysis, we quantified mitochondrial fission, fusion, and motility in the presence of cytoskeleton disrupting pharmaceuticals and the absence of the potential mitochondria-cytoskeleton linker protein, CluA. Our results indicate that microtubules are essential for mitochondrial movement, as well as fission and fusion; actin plays a less significant role, perhaps selecting the mitochondria for transport. We also suggest that CluA is not a linker protein but plays an unidentified role in mitochondrial fission and fusion. The significance of our work is to gain further insight into the role the cytoskeleton plays in mitochondrial dynamics and function. By better understanding these processes we can better appreciate the underlying mitochondrial contributions to many neurological disorders characterized by altered mitochondrial dynamics, structure, and/or function. PMID:27047941

  15. Collective behavior of minus-ended motors in mitotic microtubule asters gliding toward DNA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Athale, Chaitanya A.; Dinarina, Ana; Nedelec, Francois; Karsenti, Eric

    2014-02-01

    Microtubules (MTs) nucleated by centrosomes form star-shaped structures referred to as asters. Aster motility and dynamics is vital for genome stability, cell division, polarization and differentiation. Asters move either toward the cell center or away from it. Here, we focus on the centering mechanism in a membrane independent system of Xenopus cytoplasmic egg extracts. Using live microscopy and single particle tracking, we find that asters move toward chromatinized DNA structures. The velocity and directionality profiles suggest a random-walk with drift directed toward DNA. We have developed a theoretical model that can explain this movement as a result of a gradient of MT length dynamics and MT gliding on immobilized dynein motors. In simulations, the antagonistic action of the motor species on the radial array of MTs leads to a tug-of-war purely due to geometric considerations and aster motility resembles a directed random-walk. Additionally, our model predicts that aster velocities do not change greatly with varying initial distance from DNA. The movement of asymmetric asters becomes increasingly super-diffusive with increasing motor density, but for symmetric asters it becomes less super-diffusive. The transition of symmetric asters from superdiffusive to diffusive mobility is the result of number fluctuations in bound motors in the tug-of-war. Overall, our model is in good agreement with experimental data in Xenopus cytoplasmic extracts and predicts novel features of the collective effects of motor-MT interactions.

  16. Microtubules in protozoan cells. III. Ultrastructural changes during disintegration and reformation of heliozoan microtubules.

    PubMed

    Toyohara, A; Shigenaka, Y; Mohri, H

    1978-08-01

    In the heliozoan, Echinosphaerium nucleofilum strain MA, cold temperature (2 degrees C) induced axopodial retraction to about 36% of the initial length after 3 h. By electron microscopy, it was found that such axopodial shortening is accompanied by degradation of axonemal microtubules (25 nm in diameter), followed by the appearance of macrotubles (37 nm in diameter) and filamentous structures (14 nm in diameter) of a tubular and twisted appearance. All of these structures (microtubules, macrotubules and filamentous structures) were found to be depolymerized completely by applying 10 mM colchicine for 1-2 h, and to be replaced by regions with low electron density. Axopodial re-extension was induced rapidly by returning the cold-treated organisms to room temperature (20 degrees C). At a very early stage of axopodial re-extension, the filamentous structures were often observed to be continuous with the macrotubules. At a late stage of axopodial re-extension, the reforming axoneme was composed only of normal microtubules, while the macrotubules and filamentous structures had disappeared. On the basis of these results, the processes of disintegration and reformation of microtubules are discussed.

  17. Isolation of microtubule-based motor proteins by ATP release from paclitaxel-stabilized microtubules.

    PubMed

    Sloboda, Roger D

    2015-02-02

    The α-β-tubulin heterodimer is asymmetric, and when asymmetric subunits assemble in a head-to-tail fashion, they produce a polymer that is itself asymmetric. Microtubules are therefore polar polymers having a head (or plus) end and a tail (or minus) end. Both ends can be distinguished kinetically because they add and lose subunits at different rates. Because of this inherent asymmetry, translocation of a particle along a microtubule from the head to the tail is a different molecular event than is translocation from the minus to the plus end. Currently, two classes of microtubule-dependent motor proteins are recognized: Those that are plus-end-directed (i.e., kinesin-like) and those that are minus-end-directed (dynein-like). The kinesin family of proteins in humans contains at least 14 classes of kinesins, a grouping based on tertiary and quaternary structure considerations, as well as on enzymatic activity. The dyneins are organized into two groups: Axonemal dyneins and cytoplasmic dyneins. This protocol provides methods for the enrichment of kinesin or cytoplasmic dynein, based on the differential interactions of each type of motor protein with microtubules in the presence of different nucleotides. For a cleaner preparation of motor proteins, the protocol includes steps for the further separation of kinesin and dynein from one another by sucrose gradient centrifugation.

  18. Video microscopy analysis of the polymerization dynamics of individual microtubules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salmon, E. D.

    1991-05-01

    We have developed methods using video-enhanced differential interference contrast light microscopy (VE-DIC) to measure the association and dissociation rate constants and transition frequencies of microtubule dynamic instability for microtubules assembled from pure tubulin, plus brain microtubule assoicated proteins (MAPs), and for microtubule assembly in living cells and cytosol extracts. Following nucleation, a microtubule end is seen to elongate at constant velocity until it abruptly begins rapid shortening, a transition termed catastrophe. The microtubule either disappears, or converts back to the elongation phase, a transition termed rescue. Catastrophes and rescues occur stochastically and infrequently in comparison to the durations of the elongation and shortening phases. In purified tubulin preparations from both mammalian brain and sea urchin embryos, the elongation and shortening phases exhibit distinctly different association and dissociation rate constants; in particular, the rate of dissocation during rapid shortening can be 100 times or more greater than during elongation particularly at high Mg2+. Brain MAPs (MAP2 and Tau) promote faster elongation, but suppress dynamic instability mainly by decreasing the frequency of catastrophe and increasing the frequency of rescue. In contrast, there are unknown factors in living dividing cells and in extracts from dividing cells which enhance dynamic instability by producing high frequencies of catastrophe (.01-.05 sec-1) at fast elongation velocities (10 μm min-1). Using a microscope perfusion chamber, we have shown for microtubules assembled from pure tubulin that dilution induces rapid shortening within several seconds independent of the elongation velocity or microtubule length. Thus, the stabilizing cap at elongating microtubule ends is small and sensitive to transient changes in the rate of tubulin association, even at high elongation velocities. This means that substantial changes in microtubule

  19. Regulation of flagellar motility during biofilm formation

    PubMed Central

    Guttenplan, Sarah B.; Kearns, Daniel B.

    2013-01-01

    Many bacteria swim in liquid or swarm over solid surfaces by synthesizing rotary flagella. The same bacteria that are motile also commonly form non-motile multicellular aggregates held together by an extracellular matrix called biofilms. Biofilms are an important part of the lifestyle of pathogenic bacteria and it is assumed that there is a motility-to-biofilm transition wherein the inhibition of motility promotes biofilm formation. The transition is largely inferred from regulatory mutants that reveal the opposite regulation of the two phenotypes. Here we review the regulation of motility during biofilm formation in Bacillus, Pseudomonas, Vibrio, and Escherichia, and we conclude that the motility-to-biofilm transition, if necessary, likely involves two steps. In the short term, flagella are functionally regulated to either inhibit rotation or modulate the basal flagellar reversal frequency. Over the long term, flagellar gene transcription is inhibited and in the absence of de novo synthesis, flagella are likely diluted to extinction through growth. Both short term and long term control is likely important to the motility-to-biofilm transition to stabilize aggregates and optimize resource investment. We emphasize the newly discovered classes of flagellar functional regulators and speculate that others await discovery in the context of biofilm formation. PMID:23480406

  20. Modulation of mammalian sperm motility by quercetin.

    PubMed

    Nass-Arden, L; Breitbart, H

    1990-04-01

    The flavonoid quercetin inhibits collective motility of ejaculated ram spermatozoa in the first 2 hr of incubation; during the next 3-4 hr motility is stimulated. To explain this interesting effect, we followed the influence of quercetin on sperm glycolysis, extracellular pH, ATP content, mitochondrial respiration, and lipid peroxidation. The collective motility of untreated cells is decreased to about 40% of the original motility during two hours of incubation. During this time, the rate of glycolysis is constant, respiration rate is increasing, there is no change in ATP content, the rate of lipid peroxidation is very slow, and the extracellular pH became very acidic (pH 5.5). It is concluded that motility is decreased due to this acidification. This acidification is prevented to some extent by quercetin, which indirectly inhibits glycolysis. Quercetin inhibits motility due to the inhibition of the plasma membrane calcium pump, as we showed previously (Breitbart et al., J Biol Chem 260:11548-11553, 1985). The motility of untreated cells is arrested after 3.5 hr of incubation, whereas quercetin-treated cells show high motility, which continues for additional 2-3 hr. After 3.5 hr, the control cells show no glycolytic activity, ATP content and respiration rates are decreased, and rate of lipid peroxidation is highly increased. At this time, quercetin-treated cells show no glycolytic activity, only a small decrease in ATP content and respiratory rate, and a very low rate of lipid peroxidation. Based on these data it is concluded that sperm motility after 3.5 hr of incubation is dependent mainly on mitochondrial respiration.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  1. Self-assembly of microtubules and motors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aranson, Igor; Tsimring, Lev

    2005-03-01

    We derive a model describing spatio-temporal assembly of an array of microtubules interacting via molecular motors. Starting from a stochastic model of inelastic polar rods with a generic anisotropic interaction kernel we obtain a set of equations for the local rods concentration and orientation. At large enough mean density of rods and concentration of motors, the model describes orientational instability. We demonstrate that the orientational instability leads to the formation of vortices and (for large density and/or kernel anisotropy) asters seen in recent experiments.

  2. Self-organization of microtubules and motors.

    SciTech Connect

    Aranson, I. S.; Tsimring, L. S.; Materials Science Division; Univ. of California at San Diego

    2006-01-01

    Here we introduce a model for spatio-temporal self-organization of an ensemble of microtubules interacting via molecular motors. Starting from a generic stochastic model of inelastic polar rods with an anisotropic interaction kernel we derive a set of equations for the local rods concentration and orientation. At large enough mean density of rods and concentration of motors, the model describes orientational instability. We demonstrate that the orientational instability leads to the formation of vortices and (for large density and/or kernel anisotropy) asters seen in recent experiments. The corresponding phase diagram of vortexasters transitions is in qualitative agreement with experiment.

  3. Structural insights into microtubule doublet interactions inaxonemes

    SciTech Connect

    Downing, Kenneth H.; Sui, Haixin

    2007-06-06

    Coordinated sliding of microtubule doublets, driven by dynein motors, produces periodic beating of the axoneme. Recent structural studies of the axoneme have used cryo-electron tomography to reveal new details of the interactions among some of the multitude of proteins that form the axoneme and regulate its movement. Connections among the several sets of dyneins, in particular, suggest ways in which their actions may be coordinated. Study of the molecular architecture of isolated doublets has provided a structural basis for understanding the doublet's mechanical properties that are related to the bending of the axoneme, and has also offered insight into its potential role in the mechanism of dynein activity regulation.

  4. Building the Microtubule Cytoskeleton Piece by Piece*

    PubMed Central

    Alfaro-Aco, Ray; Petry, Sabine

    2015-01-01

    The microtubule (MT) cytoskeleton gives cells their shape, organizes the cellular interior, and segregates chromosomes. These functions rely on the precise arrangement of MTs, which is achieved by the coordinated action of MT-associated proteins (MAPs). We highlight the first and most important examples of how different MAP activities are combined in vitro to create an ensemble function that exceeds the simple addition of their individual activities, and how the Xenopus laevis egg extract system has been utilized as a powerful intermediate between cellular and purified systems to uncover the design principles of self-organized MT networks in the cell. PMID:25957410

  5. TCTEX1D4, a novel protein phosphatase 1 interactor: connecting the phosphatase to the microtubule network

    PubMed Central

    Korrodi-Gregório, Luís; Vieira, Sandra I.; Esteves, Sara L. C.; Silva, Joana V.; Freitas, Maria João; Brauns, Ann-Kristin; Luers, Georg; Abrantes, Joana; Esteves, Pedro J.; da Cruz e Silva, Odete A. B.; Fardilha, Margarida; da Cruz e Silva, Edgar F.

    2013-01-01

    Summary Reversible phosphorylation plays an important role as a mechanism of intracellular control in eukaryotes. PPP1, a major eukaryotic Ser/Thr-protein phosphatase, acquires its specificity by interacting with different protein regulators, also known as PPP1 interacting proteins (PIPs). In the present work we characterized a physiologically relevant PIP in testis. Using a yeast two-hybrid screen with a human testis cDNA library, we identified a novel PIP of PPP1CC2 isoform, the T-complex testis expressed protein 1 domain containing 4 (TCTEX1D4) that has recently been described as a Tctex1 dynein light chain family member. The overlay assays confirm that TCTEX1D4 interacts with the different spliced isoforms of PPP1CC. Also, the binding domain occurs in the N-terminus, where a consensus PPP1 binding motif (PPP1BM) RVSF is present. The distribution of TCTEX1D4 in testis suggests its involvement in distinct functions, such as TGFβ signaling at the blood–testis barrier and acrosome cap formation. Immunofluorescence in human ejaculated sperm shows that TCTEX1D4 is present in the flagellum and in the acrosome region of the head. Moreover, TCTEX1D4 and PPP1 co-localize in the microtubule organizing center (MTOC) and microtubules in cell cultures. Importantly, the TCTEX1D4 PPP1BM seems to be relevant for complex formation, for PPP1 retention in the MTOC and movement along microtubules. These novel results open new avenues to possible roles of this dynein, together with PPP1. In essence TCTEX1D4/PPP1C complex appears to be involved in microtubule dynamics, sperm motility, acrosome reaction and in the regulation of the blood–testis barrier. PMID:23789093

  6. RHAMM Promotes Interphase Microtubule Instability and Mitotic Spindle Integrity through MEK1/ERK1/2 Activity*

    PubMed Central

    Tolg, Cornelia; Hamilton, Sara R.; Morningstar, Lyndsey; Zhang, Jing; Zhang, S.; Esguerra, Kenneth V.; Telmer, Patrick G.; Luyt, Len G.; Harrison, Rene; McCarthy, James B.; Turley, Eva A.

    2010-01-01

    An oncogenic form of RHAMM (receptor for hyaluronan-mediated motility, mouse, amino acids 163–794 termed RHAMMΔ163) is a cell surface hyaluronan receptor and mitotic spindle protein that is highly expressed in aggressive human cancers. Its regulation of mitotic spindle integrity is thought to contribute to tumor progression, but the molecular mechanisms underlying this function have not previously been defined. Here, we report that intracellular RHAMMΔ163 modifies the stability of interphase and mitotic spindle microtubules through ERK1/2 activity. RHAMM−/− mouse embryonic fibroblasts exhibit strongly acetylated interphase microtubules, multi-pole mitotic spindles, aberrant chromosome segregation, and inappropriate cytokinesis during mitosis. These defects are rescued by either expression of RHAMM or mutant active MEK1. Mutational analyses show that RHAMMΔ163 binds to α- and β-tubulin protein via a carboxyl-terminal leucine zipper, but in vitro analyses indicate this interaction does not directly contribute to tubulin polymerization/stability. Co-immunoprecipitation and pulldown assays reveal complexes of RHAMMΔ163, ERK1/2-MEK1, and α- and β-tubulin and demonstrate direct binding of RHAMMΔ163 to ERK1 via a D-site motif. In vitro kinase analyses, expression of mutant RHAMMΔ163 defective in ERK1 binding in mouse embryonic fibroblasts, and blocking MEK1 activity collectively confirm that the effect of RHAMMΔ163 on interphase and mitotic spindle microtubules is mediated by ERK1/2 activity. Our results suggest a model wherein intracellular RHAMMΔ163 functions as an adaptor protein to control microtubule polymerization during interphase and mitosis as a result of localizing ERK1/2-MEK1 complexes to their tubulin-associated substrates. PMID:20558733

  7. Deterministic patterns in cell motility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lavi, Ido; Piel, Matthieu; Lennon-Duménil, Ana-Maria; Voituriez, Raphaël; Gov, Nir S.

    2016-12-01

    Cell migration paths are generally described as random walks, associated with both intrinsic and extrinsic noise. However, complex cell locomotion is not merely related to such fluctuations, but is often determined by the underlying machinery. Cell motility is driven mechanically by actin and myosin, two molecular components that generate contractile forces. Other cell functions make use of the same components and, therefore, will compete with the migratory apparatus. Here, we propose a physical model of such a competitive system, namely dendritic cells whose antigen capture function and migratory ability are coupled by myosin II. The model predicts that this coupling gives rise to a dynamic instability, whereby cells switch from persistent migration to unidirectional self-oscillation, through a Hopf bifurcation. Cells can then switch to periodic polarity reversals through a homoclinic bifurcation. These predicted dynamic regimes are characterized by robust features that we identify through in vitro trajectories of dendritic cells over long timescales and distances. We expect that competition for limited resources in other migrating cell types can lead to similar deterministic migration modes.

  8. Leading at the Front: How EB Proteins Regulate Microtubule Dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hawkins, Taviare

    2012-02-01

    Microtubules are the most rigid of the cytoskeletal filaments, they provide the cell's scaffolding, form the byways on which motor proteins transport intracellular cargo and reorganize to form the mitotic spindle when the cell needs to divide. These biopolymers are composed of alpha and beta tubulin monomers that create hollow cylindrical nanotubes with an outer diameter of 25 nm and an inner diameter of 17 nm. At steady state concentrations, microtubules undergo a process known as dynamic instability. During dynamic instability the length of individual microtubules is changing as the filament alternates between periods of growth to shrinkage (catastrophe) and shrinkage to growth (rescue). This process can be enhanced or diminished with the addition of microtubule associated proteins (MAPs). MAPs are microtubule binding proteins that stabilize, destabilize, or nucleate microtubules. We will discuss the effects of the stabilizing end-binding proteins (EB1, EB2 and EB3), on microtubule dynamics observed in vitro. The EBs are a unique family of MAPs known to tip track and enhance microtubule growth by stabilizing the ends. This is a different mechanism than those employed by structural MAPs such as tau or MAP4.

  9. Microtubule stabilising peptides rescue tau phenotypes in-vivo

    PubMed Central

    Quraishe, Shmma; Sealey, Megan; Cranfield, Louise; Mudher, Amritpal

    2016-01-01

    The microtubule cytoskeleton is a highly dynamic, filamentous network underpinning cellular structure and function. In Alzheimer’s disease, the microtubule cytoskeleton is compromised, leading to neuronal dysfunction and eventually cell death. There are currently no disease-modifying therapies to slow down or halt disease progression. However, microtubule stabilisation is a promising therapeutic strategy that is being explored. We previously investigated the disease-modifying potential of a microtubule-stabilising peptide NAP (NAPVSIPQ) in a well-established Drosophila model of tauopathy characterised by microtubule breakdown and axonal transport deficits. NAP prevented as well as reversed these phenotypes even after they had become established. In this study, we investigate the neuroprotective capabilities of an analogous peptide SAL (SALLRSIPA). We found that SAL mimicked NAP’s protective effects, by preventing axonal transport disruption and improving behavioural deficits, suggesting both NAP and SAL may act via a common mechanism. Both peptides contain a putative ‘SIP’ (Ser-Ile-Pro) domain that is important for interactions with microtubule end-binding proteins. Our data suggests this domain may be central to the microtubule stabilising function of both peptides and the mechanism by which they rescue phenotypes in this model of tauopathy. Our observations support microtubule stabilisation as a promising disease-modifying therapeutic strategy for tauopathies like Alzheimer’s disease. PMID:27910888

  10. Microtubules: dynamically unstable stochastic phase-switching polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zakharov, P. N.; Arzhanik, V. K.; Ulyanov, E. V.; Gudimchuk, N. B.; Ataullakhanov, F. I.

    2016-08-01

    One of the simplest molecular motors, a biological microtubule, is reviewed as an example of a highly nonequilibrium molecular machine capable of stochastic transitions between slow growth and rapid disassembly phases. Basic properties of microtubules are described, and various approaches to simulating their dynamics, from statistical chemical kinetics models to molecular dynamics models using the Metropolis Monte Carlo and Brownian dynamics methods, are outlined.

  11. Microtubule distribution in gravitropic protonemata of the moss Ceratodon

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schwuchow, J.; Sack, F. D.; Hartmann, E.

    1990-01-01

    Tip cells of dark-grown protonemata of the moss Ceratodon purpureus are negatively gravitropic (grow upward). They possess a unique longitudinal zonation: (1) a tip group of amylochloroplasts in the apical dome, (2) a plastid-free zone, (3) a zone of significant plastid sedimentation, and (4) a zone of mostly non-sedimenting plastids. Immunofluorescence of vertical cells showed microtubules distributed throughout the cytoplasm in a mostly axial orientation extending through all zones. Optical sectioning revealed a close spatial association between microtubules and plastids. A majority (two thirds) of protonemata gravistimulated for > 20 min had a higher density of microtubules near the lower flank compared to the upper flank in the plastid-free zone. This apparent enrichment of microtubules occurred just proximal to sedimented plastids and near the part of the tip that presumably elongates more to produce curvature. Fewer than 5% of gravistimulated protonemata had an enrichment in microtubules near the upper flank, whereas 14% of vertical protonemata were enriched near one of the side walls. Oryzalin and amiprophos-methyl (APM) disrupted microtubules, gravitropism, and normal tip growth and zonation, but did not prevent plastid sedimentation. We hypothesize that a microtubule redistribution plays a role in gravitropism in this protonema. This appears to be the first report of an effect of gravity on microtubule distribution in plants.

  12. Buckling of microtubules on elastic media via breakable bonds.

    PubMed

    Afrin, Tanjina; Kabir, Arif Md Rashedul; Sada, Kazuki; Kakugo, Akira; Nitta, Takahiro

    2016-11-04

    Buckling of microtubules observed in cells has been reconstructed on a two-dimensional elastic medium consisting of kinesins grafted over compressible substrates, enabling precise control of experimental conditions and quantitative analysis. However, interpretations of the observations have ambiguities due to inevitable experimental difficulties. In this study, with computer simulations, we investigated importance of the mode of interaction of microtubule with elastic medium in the buckling behavior of microtubule. By taking into consideration of forced-induced detachments of kinesins from microtubules, our simulations reproduced the previous experimental results, and showed deviations from predictions of the elastic foundation model. On the other hand, with hypothetical linkers permanently bound to microtubules, our simulation reproduced the predictions of the elastic foundation model. By analyzing the results of the simulations, we investigated as to why the difference arose. These findings indicate the importance of the mode of interaction of microtubule with the medium in the buckling behavior of microtubule. Our findings would bring new insights on buckling of microtubules in living cells.

  13. Microtubule-severing enzymes at the cutting edge.

    PubMed

    Sharp, David J; Ross, Jennifer L

    2012-06-01

    ATP-dependent severing of microtubules was first reported in Xenopus laevis egg extracts in 1991. Two years later this observation led to the purification of the first known microtubule-severing enzyme, katanin. Katanin homologs have now been identified throughout the animal kingdom and in plants. Moreover, members of two closely related enzyme subfamilies, spastin and fidgetin, have been found to sever microtubules and might act alongside katanins in some contexts (Roll-Mecak and McNally, 2010; Yu et al., 2008; Zhang et al., 2007). Over the past few years, it has become clear that microtubule-severing enzymes contribute to a wide range of cellular activities including mitosis and meiosis, morphogenesis, cilia biogenesis and disassembly, and migration. Thus, this group of enzymes is revealing itself to be among the most important of the microtubule regulators. This Commentary focuses on our growing understanding of how microtubule-severing enzymes contribute to the organization and dynamics of diverse microtubule arrays, as well as the structural and biophysical characteristics that afford them the unique capacity to catalyze the removal of tubulin from the interior microtubule lattice. Our goal is to provide a broader perspective, focusing on a limited number of particularly informative, representative and/or timely findings.

  14. Association of Lis1 with outer arm dynein is modulated in response to alterations in flagellar motility

    PubMed Central

    Rompolas, Panteleimon; Patel-King, Ramila S.; King, Stephen M.

    2012-01-01

    The cytoplasmic dynein regulatory factor Lis1, which induces a persistent tight binding to microtubules and allows for transport of cargoes under high-load conditions, is also present in motile cilia/flagella. We observed that Lis1 levels in flagella of Chlamydomonas strains that exhibit defective motility due to mutation of various axonemal substructures were greatly enhanced compared with wild type; this increase was absolutely dependent on the presence within the flagellum of the outer arm dynein α heavy chain/light chain 5 thioredoxin unit. To assess whether cells might interpret defective motility as a “high-load environment,” we reduced the flagellar beat frequency of wild-type cells through enhanced viscous load and by reductive stress; both treatments resulted in increased levels of flagellar Lis1, which altered the intrinsic beat frequency of the trans flagellum. Differential extraction of Lis1 from wild-type and mutant axonemes suggests that the affinity of outer arm dynein for Lis1 is directly modulated. In cytoplasm, Lis1 localized to two punctate structures, one of which was located near the base of the flagella. These data reveal that the cell actively monitors motility and dynamically modulates flagellar levels of the dynein regulatory factor Lis1 in response to imposed alterations in beat parameters. PMID:22855525

  15. Assembly and Positioning of Microtubule Asters in Microfabricated Chambers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holy, Timothy E.; Dogterom, Marileen; Yurke, Bernard; Leibler, Stanislas

    1997-06-01

    Intracellular organization depends on a variety of molecular assembly processes; while some of these have been studied in simplified cell-free systems, others depend on the confined geometry of cells and cannot be reconstructed using bulk techniques. To study the latter processes in vitro, we fabricated microscopic chambers that simulate the closed environment of cells. We used these chambers to study the positioning of microtubule asters. Microtubule assembly alone, without the action of molecular motors, is sufficient to position asters. Asters with short microtubules move toward the position expected from symmetry; however, once the microtubules become long enough to buckle, symmetry is broken. Calculations and experiments show that the bending-energy landscape has multiple minima. Microtubule dynamic instability modifies the landscape over time and allows asters to explore otherwise inaccessible configurations.

  16. Multimodal microtubule binding by the Ndc80 kinetochore complex.

    PubMed

    Alushin, Gregory M; Musinipally, Vivek; Matson, Daniel; Tooley, John; Stukenberg, P Todd; Nogales, Eva

    2012-11-01

    The Ndc80 complex is a key site of kinetochore-microtubule attachment during cell division. The human complex engages microtubules with a globular 'head' formed by tandem calponin-homology domains and an 80-amino-acid unstructured 'tail' that contains sites of phosphoregulation by the Aurora B kinase. Using biochemical, cell biological and electron microscopy analyses, we dissected the roles of the tail in binding of microtubules and mediation of cooperative interactions between Ndc80 complexes. Two segments of the tail that contain Aurora B phosphorylation sites become ordered at interfaces; one with tubulin and the second with an adjacent Ndc80 head on the microtubule surface, forming interactions that are disrupted by phosphorylation. We propose a model in which Ndc80's interaction with either growing or shrinking microtubule ends can be tuned by the phosphorylation state of its tail.

  17. Molecular mechanism of action of microtubule-stabilizing anticancer agents.

    PubMed

    Prota, Andrea E; Bargsten, Katja; Zurwerra, Didier; Field, Jessica J; Díaz, José Fernando; Altmann, Karl-Heinz; Steinmetz, Michel O

    2013-02-01

    Microtubule-stabilizing agents (MSAs) are efficacious chemotherapeutic drugs widely used for the treatment of cancer. Despite the importance of MSAs for medical applications and basic research, their molecular mechanisms of action on tubulin and microtubules remain elusive. We determined high-resolution crystal structures of αβ-tubulin in complex with two unrelated MSAs, zampanolide and epothilone A. Both compounds were bound to the taxane pocket of β-tubulin and used their respective side chains to induce structuring of the M-loop into a short helix. Because the M-loop establishes lateral tubulin contacts in microtubules, these findings explain how taxane-site MSAs promote microtubule assembly and stability. Further, our results offer fundamental structural insights into the control mechanisms of microtubule dynamics.

  18. The Ndc80 kinetochore complex forms oligomeric arrays along microtubules

    PubMed Central

    Alushin, Gregory M.; Ramey, Vincent H.; Pasqualato, Sebastiano; Ball, David A.; Grigorieff, Nikolaus; Musacchio, Andrea; Nogales, Eva

    2010-01-01

    The Ndc80 complex is a key site of regulated kinetochore-microtubule attachment, but the molecular mechanism underlying its function remains unknown. Here we present a subnanometer resolution cryo-electron microscopy reconstruction of the human Ndc80 complex bound to microtubules, sufficient for precise docking of crystal structures of the component proteins. We find that Ndc80 binds the microtubule with a tubulin monomer repeat, recognizing α- and β-tubulin at both intra- and inter-dimer interfaces in a manner that is sensitive to tubulin conformation. Furthermore, Ndc80 complexes self-associate along protofilaments via interactions mediated by the amino-terminal tail of the Ndc80 protein, the site of phospho-regulation by the Aurora B kinase. Ndc80's mode of interaction with the microtubule and its oligomerization suggest a mechanism by which Aurora B could regulate the stability of load-bearing Ndc80-microtubule attachments. PMID:20944740

  19. Multifunctional Microtubule-Associated Proteins in Plants

    PubMed Central

    Krtková, Jana; Benáková, Martina; Schwarzerová, Kateřina

    2016-01-01

    Microtubules (MTs) are involved in key processes in plant cells, including cell division, growth and development. MT-interacting proteins modulate MT dynamics and organization, mediating functional and structural interaction of MTs with other cell structures. In addition to conventional microtubule-associated proteins (MAPs) in plants, there are many other MT-binding proteins whose primary function is not related to the regulation of MTs. This review focuses on enzymes, chaperones, or proteins primarily involved in other processes that also bind to MTs. The MT-binding activity of these multifunctional MAPs is often performed only under specific environmental or physiological conditions, or they bind to MTs only as components of a larger MT-binding protein complex. The involvement of multifunctional MAPs in these interactions may underlie physiological and morphogenetic events, e.g., under specific environmental or developmental conditions. Uncovering MT-binding activity of these proteins, although challenging, may contribute to understanding of the novel functions of the MT cytoskeleton in plant biological processes. PMID:27148302

  20. SEROLOGICAL SIMILARITY OF FLAGELLAR AND MITOTIC MICROTUBULES

    PubMed Central

    Fulton, Chandler; Kane, R. E.; Stephens, R. E.

    1971-01-01

    An antiserum to flagellar axonemes from sperm of Arbacia punctulata contains antibodies which react both with intact flagellar outer fibers and with purified tubulin from the outer fibers. Immunodiffusion tests indicate the presence of similar antigenic determinants on outer-fiber tubulins from sperm flagella of five species of sea urchins and a sand dollar, but not a starfish. The antibodies also react with extracts containing tubulins from different classes of microtubules, including central-pair fibers and both A- and B-subfibers from outer fibers of sperm flagella, an extract from unfertilized eggs, mitotic apparatuses from first cleavage embryos, and cilia from later embryos. Though most tubulins tested share similar antigenic determinants, some clear differences have been detected, even, in Pseudoboletia indiana, between the outer-fiber tubulins of sperm flagella and blastular cilia. Though tubulins are "actin-like" proteins, antitubulin serum does not react with actin from sea urchin lantern muscle. On the basis of these observations, we suggest that various echinoid microtubules are built of similar, but not identical, tubulins. PMID:4106543

  1. Mammalian Sperm Motility: Observation and Theory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gaffney, E. A.; Gadêlha, H.; Smith, D. J.; Blake, J. R.; Kirkman-Brown, J. C.

    2011-01-01

    Mammalian spermatozoa motility is a subject of growing importance because of rising human infertility and the possibility of improving animal breeding. We highlight opportunities for fluid and continuum dynamics to provide novel insights concerning the mechanics of these specialized cells, especially during their remarkable journey to the egg. The biological structure of the motile sperm appendage, the flagellum, is described and placed in the context of the mechanics underlying the migration of mammalian sperm through the numerous environments of the female reproductive tract. This process demands certain specific changes to flagellar movement and motility for which further mechanical insight would be valuable, although this requires improved modeling capabilities, particularly to increase our understanding of sperm progression in vivo. We summarize current theoretical studies, highlighting the synergistic combination of imaging and theory in exploring sperm motility, and discuss the challenges for future observational and theoretical studies in understanding the underlying mechanics.

  2. Transient Pinning and Pulling: A Mechanism for Bending Microtubules

    PubMed Central

    Kent, Ian A.; Rane, Parag S.; Dickinson, Richard B.; Ladd, Anthony J. C.; Lele, Tanmay P.

    2016-01-01

    Microtubules have a persistence length of the order of millimeters in vitro, but inside cells they bend over length scales of microns. It has been proposed that polymerization forces bend microtubules in the vicinity of the cell boundary or other obstacles, yet bends develop even when microtubules are polymerizing freely, unaffected by obstacles and cell boundaries. How these bends are formed remains unclear. By tracking the motions of microtubules marked by photobleaching, we found that in LLC-PK1 epithelial cells local bends develop primarily by plus-end directed transport of portions of the microtubule contour towards stationary locations (termed pinning points) along the length of the microtubule. The pinning points were transient in nature, and their eventual release allowed the bends to relax. The directionality of the transport as well as the overall incidence of local bends decreased when dynein was inhibited, while myosin inhibition had no observable effect. This suggests that dynein generates a tangential force that bends microtubules against stationary pinning points. Simulations of microtubule motion and polymerization accounting for filament mechanics and dynein forces predict the development of bends of size and shape similar to those observed in cells. Furthermore, simulations show that dynein-generated bends at a pinning point near the plus end can cause a persistent rotation of the tip consistent with the observation that bend formation near the tip can change the direction of microtubule growth. Collectively, these results suggest a simple physical mechanism for the bending of growing microtubules by dynein forces accumulating at pinning points. PMID:26974838

  3. Select Acetophenones Modulate Flagellar Motility in Chlamydomonas

    PubMed Central

    Evans, Shakila K.; Pearce, Austin A.; Ibezim, Prudence K.; Primm, Todd P.; Gaillard, Anne R.

    2009-01-01

    Acetophenones were screened for activity against positive phototaxis of Chlamydomonas cells, a process that requires coordinated flagellar motility. The structure-activity relationships of a series of acetophenones are reported, including acetophenones that affect flagellar motility and cell viability. Notably, 4-methoxyacetophenone, 3,4-dimethoxyacetophenone, and 4-hydroxyacetophenone induced negative phototaxis in Chlamydomonas, suggesting interference with activity of flagellar proteins and control of flagellar dominance. PMID:20659114

  4. Toward the reconstitution of synthetic cell motility

    PubMed Central

    Siton-Mendelson, Orit; Bernheim-Groswasser, Anne

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Cellular motility is a fundamental process essential for embryonic development, wound healing, immune responses, and tissues development. Cells are mostly moving by crawling on external, or inside, substrates which can differ in their surface composition, geometry, and dimensionality. Cells can adopt different migration phenotypes, e.g., bleb-based and protrusion-based, depending on myosin contractility, surface adhesion, and cell confinement. In the few past decades, research on cell motility has focused on uncovering the major molecular players and their order of events. Despite major progresses, our ability to infer on the collective behavior from the molecular properties remains a major challenge, especially because cell migration integrates numerous chemical and mechanical processes that are coupled via feedbacks that span over large range of time and length scales. For this reason, reconstituted model systems were developed. These systems allow for full control of the molecular constituents and various system parameters, thereby providing insight into their individual roles and functions. In this review we describe the various reconstituted model systems that were developed in the past decades. Because of the multiple steps involved in cell motility and the complexity of the overall process, most of the model systems focus on very specific aspects of the individual steps of cell motility. Here we describe the main advancement in cell motility reconstitution and discuss the main challenges toward the realization of a synthetic motile cell. PMID:27019160

  5. Tumor invasion as dysregulated cell motility.

    PubMed

    Kassis, J; Lauffenburger, D A; Turner, T; Wells, A

    2001-04-01

    Investigations across a range of disciplines over the past decade have brought the study of cell motility and its role in invasion to an exciting threshold. The biophysical forces proximally involved in generating cell locomotion, as well as the underlying signaling and genomic regulatory processes, are gradually becoming elucidated. We now appreciate the intricacies of the many cellular and extracellular events that modulate cell migration. This has enabled the demonstration of a causal role of cell motility in tumor progression, with various points of 'dysregulation' of motility being responsible for promoting invasion. In this paper, we describe key fundamental principles governing cell motility and branch out to describe the essence of the data that describe these principles. It has become evident that many proposed models may indeed be converging into a tightly-woven tapestry of coordinated events which employ various growth factors and their receptors, adhesion receptors (integrins), downstream molecules, cytoskeletal components, and altered genomic regulation to accomplish cell motility. Tumor invasion occurs in response to dysregulation of many of these modulatory points; specific examples include increased signaling from the EGF receptor and through PLC gamma, altered localization and expression of integrins, changes in actin modifying proteins and increased transcription from specific promoter sites. This diversity of alterations all leading to tumor invasion point to the difficulty of correcting causal events leading to tumor invasion and rather suggest that the underlying common processes required for motility be targeted for therapeutic intervention.

  6. Flagellar motility in eukaryotic human parasites.

    PubMed

    Krüger, Timothy; Engstler, Markus

    2015-10-01

    A huge variety of protists rely on one or more motile flagella to either move themselves or move fluids and substances around them. Many of these flagellates have evolved a symbiotic or parasitic lifestyle. Several of the parasites have adapted to human hosts, and include agents of prevalent and serious diseases. These unicellular parasites have become specialised in colonising a wide range of biological niches within humans. They usually have diverse transmission cycles, and frequently manifest a variety of distinct morphological stages. The motility of the single or multiple flagella plays important but understudied roles in parasite transmission, host invasion, dispersal, survival, proliferation and pathology. In this review we provide an overview of the important human pathogens that possess a motile flagellum for at least part of their life cycle. We highlight recently published studies that aim to elucidate motility mechanisms, and their relevance for human disease. We then bring the physics of swimming at the microscale into context, emphasising the importance of interdisciplinary approaches for a full understanding of flagellate motility - especially in light of the parasites' microenvironments and population dynamics. Finally, we summarise some important technological aspects, describing challenges for the field and possibilities for motility analyses in the future.

  7. Growth, collapse, and stalling in a mechanical model for neurite motility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Recho, Pierre; Jerusalem, Antoine; Goriely, Alain

    2016-03-01

    Neurites, the long cellular protrusions that form the routes of the neuronal network, are capable of actively extending during early morphogenesis or regenerating after trauma. To perform this task, they rely on their cytoskeleton for mechanical support. In this paper, we present a three-component active gel model that describes neurites in the three robust mechanical states observed experimentally: collapsed, static, and motile. These states arise from an interplay between the physical forces driven by growth of the microtubule-rich inner core of the neurite and the acto-myosin contractility of its surrounding cortical membrane. In particular, static states appear as a mechanical traction or compression balance of these two parallel structures. The model predicts how the response of a neurite to a towing force depends on the force magnitude and recovers the response of neurites to several drug treatments that modulate the cytoskeleton active and passive properties.

  8. Theoretical formalism for kinesin motility I. Bead movement powered by single one-headed kinesins.

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Y d

    2000-01-01

    The directional movement on a microtubule of a plastic bead connected elastically to a single one-headed kinesin motor is studied theoretically. The kinesin motor can bind and unbind to periodic binding sites on the microtubule and undergo conformational changes while catalyzing the hydrolysis of ATP. An analytic formalism relating the dynamics of the bead and the ATP hydrolysis cycle of the motor is derived so that the calculation of the average velocity of the bead can be easily carried out. The formalism was applied to a simple three-state biochemical model to investigate how the velocity of the bead movement is affected by the external load, the diffusion coefficient of the bead, and the stiffness of the elastic element connecting the bead and the motor. The bead velocity was found to be critically dependent on the diffusion coefficient of the bead and the stiffness of the elastic element. A linear force-velocity relation was found for the model no matter whether the bead velocity was modulated by the diffusion coefficient of the bead or by the externally applied load. The formalism should be useful in modeling the mechanisms of chemimechanical coupling in kinesin motors based on in vitro motility data. PMID:10620295

  9. Velocity Fluctuations in Kinesin-1 Gliding Motility Assays Originate in Motor Attachment Geometry Variations.

    PubMed

    Palacci, Henri; Idan, Ofer; Armstrong, Megan J; Agarwal, Ashutosh; Nitta, Takahiro; Hess, Henry

    2016-08-09

    Motor proteins such as myosin and kinesin play a major role in cellular cargo transport, muscle contraction, cell division, and engineered nanodevices. Quantifying the collective behavior of coupled motors is critical to our understanding of these systems. An excellent model system is the gliding motility assay, where hundreds of surface-adhered motors propel one cytoskeletal filament such as an actin filament or a microtubule. The filament motion can be observed using fluorescence microscopy, revealing fluctuations in gliding velocity. These velocity fluctuations have been previously quantified by a motional diffusion coefficient, which Sekimoto and Tawada explained as arising from the addition and removal of motors from the linear array of motors propelling the filament as it advances, assuming that different motors are not equally efficient in their force generation. A computational model of kinesin head diffusion and binding to the microtubule allowed us to quantify the heterogeneity of motor efficiency arising from the combination of anharmonic tail stiffness and varying attachment geometries assuming random motor locations on the surface and an absence of coordination between motors. Knowledge of the heterogeneity allows the calculation of the proportionality constant between the motional diffusion coefficient and the motor density. The calculated value (0.3) is within a standard error of our measurements of the motional diffusion coefficient on surfaces with varying motor densities calibrated by landing rate experiments. This allowed us to quantify the loss in efficiency of coupled molecular motors arising from heterogeneity in the attachment geometry.

  10. Multiscale modeling and simulation of microtubule-motor-protein assemblies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, Tong; Blackwell, Robert; Glaser, Matthew A.; Betterton, M. D.; Shelley, Michael J.

    2015-12-01

    Microtubules and motor proteins self-organize into biologically important assemblies including the mitotic spindle and the centrosomal microtubule array. Outside of cells, microtubule-motor mixtures can form novel active liquid-crystalline materials driven out of equilibrium by adenosine triphosphate-consuming motor proteins. Microscopic motor activity causes polarity-dependent interactions between motor proteins and microtubules, but how these interactions yield larger-scale dynamical behavior such as complex flows and defect dynamics is not well understood. We develop a multiscale theory for microtubule-motor systems in which Brownian dynamics simulations of polar microtubules driven by motors are used to study microscopic organization and stresses created by motor-mediated microtubule interactions. We identify polarity-sorting and crosslink tether relaxation as two polar-specific sources of active destabilizing stress. We then develop a continuum Doi-Onsager model that captures polarity sorting and the hydrodynamic flows generated by these polar-specific active stresses. In simulations of active nematic flows on immersed surfaces, the active stresses drive turbulent flow dynamics and continuous generation and annihilation of disclination defects. The dynamics follow from two instabilities, and accounting for the immersed nature of the experiment yields unambiguous characteristic length and time scales. When turning off the hydrodynamics in the Doi-Onsager model, we capture formation of polar lanes as observed in the Brownian dynamics simulation.

  11. Multiscale modeling and simulation of microtubule-motor-protein assemblies.

    PubMed

    Gao, Tong; Blackwell, Robert; Glaser, Matthew A; Betterton, M D; Shelley, Michael J

    2015-01-01

    Microtubules and motor proteins self-organize into biologically important assemblies including the mitotic spindle and the centrosomal microtubule array. Outside of cells, microtubule-motor mixtures can form novel active liquid-crystalline materials driven out of equilibrium by adenosine triphosphate-consuming motor proteins. Microscopic motor activity causes polarity-dependent interactions between motor proteins and microtubules, but how these interactions yield larger-scale dynamical behavior such as complex flows and defect dynamics is not well understood. We develop a multiscale theory for microtubule-motor systems in which Brownian dynamics simulations of polar microtubules driven by motors are used to study microscopic organization and stresses created by motor-mediated microtubule interactions. We identify polarity-sorting and crosslink tether relaxation as two polar-specific sources of active destabilizing stress. We then develop a continuum Doi-Onsager model that captures polarity sorting and the hydrodynamic flows generated by these polar-specific active stresses. In simulations of active nematic flows on immersed surfaces, the active stresses drive turbulent flow dynamics and continuous generation and annihilation of disclination defects. The dynamics follow from two instabilities, and accounting for the immersed nature of the experiment yields unambiguous characteristic length and time scales. When turning off the hydrodynamics in the Doi-Onsager model, we capture formation of polar lanes as observed in the Brownian dynamics simulation.

  12. Association of actin filaments with axonal microtubule tracts.

    PubMed

    Bearer, E L; Reese, T S

    1999-02-01

    Axoplasmic organelles move on actin as well as microtubules in vitro and axons contain a large amount of actin, but little is known about the organization and distribution of actin filaments within the axon. Here we undertake to define the relationship of the microtubule bundles typically found in axons to actin filaments by applying three microscopic techniques: laser-scanning confocal microscopy of immuno-labeled squid axoplasm; electronmicroscopy of conventionally prepared thin sections; and electronmicroscopy of touch preparations-a thin layer of axoplasm transferred to a specimen grid and negatively stained. Light microscopy shows that longitudinal actin filaments are abundant and usually coincide with longitudinal microtubule bundles. Electron microscopy shows that microfilaments are interwoven with the longitudinal bundles of microtubules. These bundles maintain their integrity when neurofilaments are extracted. Some, though not all microfilaments decorate with the S1 fragment of myosin, and some also act as nucleation sites for polymerization of exogenous actin, and hence are definitively identified as actin filaments. These actin filaments range in minimum length from 0.5 to 1.5 microm with some at least as long as 3.5 microm. We conclude that the microtubule-based tracks for fast organelle transport also include actin filaments. These actin filaments are sufficiently long and abundant to be ancillary or supportive of fast transport along microtubules within bundles, or to extend transport outside of the bundle. These actin filaments could also be essential for maintaining the structural integrity of the microtubule bundles.

  13. α-Synuclein is a Novel Microtubule Dynamase.

    PubMed

    Cartelli, Daniele; Aliverti, Alessandro; Barbiroli, Alberto; Santambrogio, Carlo; Ragg, Enzio M; Casagrande, Francesca V M; Cantele, Francesca; Beltramone, Silvia; Marangon, Jacopo; De Gregorio, Carmelita; Pandini, Vittorio; Emanuele, Marco; Chieregatti, Evelina; Pieraccini, Stefano; Holmqvist, Staffan; Bubacco, Luigi; Roybon, Laurent; Pezzoli, Gianni; Grandori, Rita; Arnal, Isabelle; Cappelletti, Graziella

    2016-09-15

    α-Synuclein is a presynaptic protein associated to Parkinson's disease, which is unstructured when free in the cytoplasm and adopts α helical conformation when bound to vesicles. After decades of intense studies, α-Synuclein physiology is still difficult to clear up due to its interaction with multiple partners and its involvement in a pletora of neuronal functions. Here, we looked at the remarkably neglected interplay between α-Synuclein and microtubules, which potentially impacts on synaptic functionality. In order to identify the mechanisms underlying these actions, we investigated the interaction between purified α-Synuclein and tubulin. We demonstrated that α-Synuclein binds to microtubules and tubulin α2β2 tetramer; the latter interaction inducing the formation of helical segment(s) in the α-Synuclein polypeptide. This structural change seems to enable α-Synuclein to promote microtubule nucleation and to enhance microtubule growth rate and catastrophe frequency, both in vitro and in cell. We also showed that Parkinson's disease-linked α-Synuclein variants do not undergo tubulin-induced folding and cause tubulin aggregation rather than polymerization. Our data enable us to propose α-Synuclein as a novel, foldable, microtubule-dynamase, which influences microtubule organisation through its binding to tubulin and its regulating effects on microtubule nucleation and dynamics.

  14. Poleward microtubule flux mitotic spindles assembled in vitro

    PubMed Central

    1991-01-01

    In the preceding paper we described pathways of mitotic spindle assembly in cell-free extracts prepared from eggs of Xenopus laevis. Here we demonstrate the poleward flux of microtubules in spindles assembled in vitro, using a photoactivatable fluorescein covalently coupled to tubulin and multi-channel fluorescence videomicroscopy. After local photoactivation of fluorescence by UV microbeam, we observed poleward movement of fluorescein-marked microtubules at a rate of 3 microns/min, similar to rates of chromosome movement and spindle elongation during prometaphase and anaphase. This movement could be blocked by the addition of millimolar AMP-PNP but was not affected by concentrations of vanadate up to 150 microM, suggesting that poleward flux may be driven by a microtubule motor similar to kinesin. In contrast to previous results obtained in vivo (Mitchison, T. J. 1989. J. Cell Biol. 109:637-652), poleward flux in vitro appears to occur independently of kinetochores or kinetochore microtubules, and therefore may be a general property of relatively stable microtubules within the spindle. We find that microtubules moving towards poles are dynamic structures, and we have estimated the average half-life of fluxing microtubules in vitro to be between approximately 75 and 100 s. We discuss these results with regard to the function of poleward flux in spindle movements in anaphase and prometaphase. PMID:1999464

  15. α-Synuclein is a Novel Microtubule Dynamase

    PubMed Central

    Cartelli, Daniele; Aliverti, Alessandro; Barbiroli, Alberto; Santambrogio, Carlo; Ragg, Enzio M.; Casagrande, Francesca V.M.; Cantele, Francesca; Beltramone, Silvia; Marangon, Jacopo; De Gregorio, Carmelita; Pandini, Vittorio; Emanuele, Marco; Chieregatti, Evelina; Pieraccini, Stefano; Holmqvist, Staffan; Bubacco, Luigi; Roybon, Laurent; Pezzoli, Gianni; Grandori, Rita; Arnal, Isabelle; Cappelletti, Graziella

    2016-01-01

    α-Synuclein is a presynaptic protein associated to Parkinson’s disease, which is unstructured when free in the cytoplasm and adopts α helical conformation when bound to vesicles. After decades of intense studies, α-Synuclein physiology is still difficult to clear up due to its interaction with multiple partners and its involvement in a pletora of neuronal functions. Here, we looked at the remarkably neglected interplay between α-Synuclein and microtubules, which potentially impacts on synaptic functionality. In order to identify the mechanisms underlying these actions, we investigated the interaction between purified α-Synuclein and tubulin. We demonstrated that α-Synuclein binds to microtubules and tubulin α2β2 tetramer; the latter interaction inducing the formation of helical segment(s) in the α-Synuclein polypeptide. This structural change seems to enable α-Synuclein to promote microtubule nucleation and to enhance microtubule growth rate and catastrophe frequency, both in vitro and in cell. We also showed that Parkinson’s disease-linked α-Synuclein variants do not undergo tubulin-induced folding and cause tubulin aggregation rather than polymerization. Our data enable us to propose α-Synuclein as a novel, foldable, microtubule-dynamase, which influences microtubule organisation through its binding to tubulin and its regulating effects on microtubule nucleation and dynamics. PMID:27628239

  16. An improved quantitative analysis method for plant cortical microtubules.

    PubMed

    Lu, Yi; Huang, Chenyang; Wang, Jia; Shang, Peng

    2014-01-01

    The arrangement of plant cortical microtubules can reflect the physiological state of cells. However, little attention has been paid to the image quantitative analysis of plant cortical microtubules so far. In this paper, Bidimensional Empirical Mode Decomposition (BEMD) algorithm was applied in the image preprocessing of the original microtubule image. And then Intrinsic Mode Function 1 (IMF1) image obtained by decomposition was selected to do the texture analysis based on Grey-Level Cooccurrence Matrix (GLCM) algorithm. Meanwhile, in order to further verify its reliability, the proposed texture analysis method was utilized to distinguish different images of Arabidopsis microtubules. The results showed that the effect of BEMD algorithm on edge preserving accompanied with noise reduction was positive, and the geometrical characteristic of the texture was obvious. Four texture parameters extracted by GLCM perfectly reflected the different arrangements between the two images of cortical microtubules. In summary, the results indicate that this method is feasible and effective for the image quantitative analysis of plant cortical microtubules. It not only provides a new quantitative approach for the comprehensive study of the role played by microtubules in cell life activities but also supplies references for other similar studies.

  17. Oscillatory fluid flow influences primary cilia and microtubule mechanics.

    PubMed

    Espinha, Lina C; Hoey, David A; Fernandes, Paulo R; Rodrigues, Hélder C; Jacobs, Christopher R

    2014-07-01

    Many tissues are sensitive to mechanical stimuli; however, the mechanotransduction mechanism used by cells remains unknown in many cases. The primary cilium is a solitary, immotile microtubule-based extension present on nearly every mammalian cell which extends from the basal body. The cilium is a mechanosensitive organelle and has been shown to transduce fluid flow-induced shear stress in tissues, such as the kidney and bone. The majority of microtubules assemble from the mother centriole (basal body), contributing significantly to the anchoring of the primary cilium. Several studies have attempted to quantify the number of microtubules emanating from the basal body and the results vary depending on the cell type. It has also been shown that cellular response to shear stress depends on microtubular integrity. This study hypothesizes that changing the microtubule attachment of primary cilia in response to a mechanical stimulus could change primary cilia mechanics and, possibly, mechanosensitivity. Oscillatory fluid flow was applied to two different cell types and the microtubule attachment to the ciliary base was quantified. For the first time, an increase in microtubules around primary cilia both with time and shear rate in response to oscillatory fluid flow stimulation was demonstrated. Moreover, it is presented that the primary cilium is required for this loading-induced cellular response. This study has demonstrated a new role for the cilium in regulating alterations in the cytoplasmic microtubule network in response to mechanical stimulation, and therefore provides a new insight into how cilia may regulate its mechanics and thus the cells mechanosensitivity.

  18. Microtubules (tau) as an emerging therapeutic target: NAP (davunetide).

    PubMed

    Gozes, Illana

    2011-01-01

    This review focuses on the discovery of activity-dependent neuroprotective protein (ADNP) and the ensuing discovery of NAP (davunetide) toward clinical development with emphasis on microtubule protection. ADNP immunoreactivity was shown to occasionally decorate microtubules and ADNP silencing inhibited neurite outgrowth as measured by microtubule associated protein 2 (MAP2) labeling. ADNP knockout is lethal, while 50% reduction in ADNP (ADNP haploinsufficiency) resulted in the microtubule associated protein tau pathology coupled to cognitive dysfunction and neurodegeneration. NAP (davunetide), an eight amino acid peptide derived from ADNP partly ameliorated deficits associated with ADNP deficiency. NAP (davunetide) interacted with microtubules, protected against microtubule toxicity associated with zinc, nocodazole and oxidative stress in vitro and against tau pathology and MAP6 (stable tubuleonly polypeptide - STOP) pathology in vivo. NAP (davunetide) provided neurotrophic functions promoting neurite outgrowth as measured by increases in MAP2 immunoreactivity and synapse formation by increasing synaptophysin expression. NAP (davunetide) protection against neurodegeneration has recently been shown to extend to katanin-related microtubule disruption under conditions of tau deficiencies. In conclusion, NAP (davunetide) provided potent neuroprotection in a broad range of neurodegenerative models, protecting the neuroglial cytoskeleton in vitro and inhibiting tau pathology (tauopathy) in vivo. Based on these extensive preclinical results, davunetide (NAP) is now being evaluated in a Phase II/III study of the tauopathy, progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP); (Allon Therapeutics Inc.).

  19. Jupiter, a new Drosophila protein associated with microtubules.

    PubMed

    Karpova, Nina; Bobinnec, Yves; Fouix, Sylvaine; Huitorel, Philippe; Debec, Alain

    2006-05-01

    In this study we describe a novel Drosophila protein Jupiter, which shares properties with several structural microtubule-associated proteins (MAPs) including TAU, MAP2, MAP4. Jupiter is a soluble unfolded molecule with the high net positive charge, rich in Glycine. It possesses two degenerated repeats around the sequence PPGG, separated by a Serine-rich region. Jupiter associates with microtubules in vitro and, fused with the green fluorescent protein (GFP), is an excellent marker to follow microtubule dynamics in vivo. In a jupiter transgenic Drosophila strain generated by the "protein-trap" technique, Jupiter:GFP fusion protein localizes to the microtubule network through the cell cycle at the different stages of development. We found particularly high Jupiter:GFP concentrations in the young embryo, larval nervous system, precursors of eye photoreceptors and adult ovary. Moreover, from jupiter:gfp embryos we have established two permanent cell lines presenting strongly fluorescent microtubules during the whole cell cycle. In these cells, the distribution of the Jupiter:GFP fusion protein reproduces microtubule behavior upon treatment by the drugs colchicine and taxol. The jupiter cell lines and fly strain should be of wide interest for biologists interested in in vivo analysis of microtubule dynamics.

  20. A thermodynamic model of microtubule assembly and disassembly.

    PubMed

    Piette, Bernard M A G; Liu, Junli; Peeters, Kasper; Smertenko, Andrei; Hawkins, Timothy; Deeks, Michael; Quinlan, Roy; Zakrzewski, Wojciech J; Hussey, Patrick J

    2009-08-11

    Microtubules are self-assembling polymers whose dynamics are essential for the normal function of cellular processes including chromosome separation and cytokinesis. Therefore understanding what factors effect microtubule growth is fundamental to our understanding of the control of microtubule based processes. An important factor that determines the status of a microtubule, whether it is growing or shrinking, is the length of the GTP tubulin microtubule cap. Here, we derive a Monte Carlo model of the assembly and disassembly of microtubules. We use thermodynamic laws to reduce the number of parameters of our model and, in particular, we take into account the contribution of water to the entropy of the system. We fit all parameters of the model from published experimental data using the GTP tubulin dimer attachment rate and the lateral and longitudinal binding energies of GTP and GDP tubulin dimers at both ends. Also we calculate and incorporate the GTP hydrolysis rate. We have applied our model and can mimic published experimental data, which formerly suggested a single layer GTP tubulin dimer microtubule cap, to show that these data demonstrate that the GTP cap can fluctuate and can be several microns long.

  1. Nonlinear dynamics of C-terminal tails in cellular microtubules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sekulic, Dalibor L.; Sataric, Bogdan M.; Zdravkovic, Slobodan; Bugay, Aleksandr N.; Sataric, Miljko V.

    2016-07-01

    The mechanical and electrical properties, and information processing capabilities of microtubules are the permanent subject of interest for carrying out experiments in vitro and in silico, as well as for theoretical attempts to elucidate the underlying processes. In this paper, we developed a new model of the mechano-electrical waves elicited in the rows of very flexible C-terminal tails which decorate the outer surface of each microtubule. The fact that C-terminal tails play very diverse roles in many cellular functions, such as recruitment of motor proteins and microtubule-associated proteins, motivated us to consider their collective dynamics as the source of localized waves aimed for communication between microtubule and associated proteins. Our approach is based on the ferroelectric liquid crystal model and it leads to the effective asymmetric double-well potential which brings about the conditions for the appearance of kink-waves conducted by intrinsic electric fields embedded in microtubules. These kinks can serve as the signals for control and regulation of intracellular traffic along microtubules performed by processive motions of motor proteins, primarly from kinesin and dynein families. On the other hand, they can be precursors for initiation of dynamical instability of microtubules by recruiting the proper proteins responsible for the depolymerization process.

  2. Modulation of Microtubule Interprotofilament Interactions by Modified Taxanes

    PubMed Central

    Matesanz, Ruth; Rodríguez-Salarichs, Javier; Pera, Benet; Canales, Ángeles; Andreu, José Manuel; Jiménez-Barbero, Jesús; Bras, Wim; Nogales, Aurora; Fang, Wei-Shuo; Díaz, José Fernando

    2011-01-01

    Microtubules assembled with paclitaxel and docetaxel differ in their numbers of protofilaments, reflecting modification of the lateral association between αβ-tubulin molecules in the microtubule wall. These modifications of microtubule structure, through a not-yet-characterized mechanism, are most likely related to the changes in tubulin-tubulin interactions responsible for microtubule stabilization by these antitumor compounds. We have used a set of modified taxanes to study the structural mechanism of microtubule stabilization by these ligands. Using small-angle x-ray scattering, we have determined how modifications in the shape and size of the taxane substituents result in changes in the interprotofilament angles and in their number. The observed effects have been explained using NMR-aided docking and molecular dynamic simulations of taxane binding at the microtubule pore and luminal sites. Modeling results indicate that modification of the size of substituents at positions C7 and C10 of the taxane core influence the conformation of three key elements in microtubule lateral interactions (the M-loop, the S3 β-strand, and the H3 helix) that modulate the contacts between adjacent protofilaments. In addition, modifications of the substituents at position C2 slightly rearrange the ligand in the binding site, modifying the interaction of the C7 substituent with the M-loop. PMID:22208196

  3. Paxillin localizes to the lymphocyte microtubule organizing center and associates with the microtubule cytoskeleton.

    PubMed

    Herreros, L; Rodríguez-Fernandez, J L; Brown, M C; Alonso-Lebrero, J L; Cabañas, C; Sánchez-Madrid, F; Longo, N; Turner, C E; Sánchez-Mateos, P

    2000-08-25

    Paxillin is a focal adhesion-associated protein that functions as a multi-domain adapter protein, binding several structural and signaling molecules. alpha-Tubulin was identified as an interacting protein in a two-hybrid screen using the paxillin C-terminal LIM domain as a bait. In vitro binding assays with glutathione S-transferase-paxillin demonstrated an interaction of alpha-tubulin with the C terminus of paxillin. Another member of the tubulin family, gamma-tubulin, bound to both the N and the C terminus of paxillin. The interaction between paxillin and both alpha- and gamma-tubulin in vivo was confirmed by co-immunoprecipitation from human T lymphoblasts. Immunofluorescence studies revealed that, in adherent T cells, paxillin localized to sites of cell-matrix interaction as well as to a large perinuclear region. Confocal microscopy revealed that this region corresponds to the lymphocyte microtubule organizing center, where paxillin colocalizes with alpha- and gamma-tubulin. The localization of paxillin to this area was observed in cells in suspension as well as during adhesion to integrin ligands. These data constitute the first characterization of the interaction of paxillin with the microtubule cytoskeleton, and suggest that paxillin, in addition to its well established role at focal adhesions, could also be associated with the lymphocyte microtubule network.

  4. Tau mediates microtubule bundle architectures mimicking fascicles of microtubules found in the axon initial segment

    PubMed Central

    Chung, Peter J.; Song, Chaeyeon; Deek, Joanna; Miller, Herbert P.; Li, Youli; Choi, Myung Chul; Wilson, Leslie; Feinstein, Stuart C.; Safinya, Cyrus R.

    2016-01-01

    Tau, an intrinsically disordered protein confined to neuronal axons, binds to and regulates microtubule dynamics. Although there have been observations of string-like microtubule fascicles in the axon initial segment (AIS) and hexagonal bundles in neurite-like processes in non-neuronal cells overexpressing Tau, cell-free reconstitutions have not replicated either geometry. Here we map out the energy landscape of Tau-mediated, GTP-dependent ‘active' microtubule bundles at 37 °C, as revealed by synchrotron SAXS and TEM. Widely spaced bundles (wall-to-wall distance Dw–w≈25–41 nm) with hexagonal and string-like symmetry are observed, the latter mimicking bundles found in the AIS. A second energy minimum (Dw–w≈16–23 nm) is revealed under osmotic pressure. The wide spacing results from a balance between repulsive forces, due to Tau's projection domain (PD), and a stabilizing sum of transient sub-kBT cationic/anionic charge–charge attractions mediated by weakly penetrating opposing PDs. This landscape would be significantly affected by charge-altering modifications of Tau associated with neurodegeneration. PMID:27452526

  5. Tau mediates microtubule bundle architectures mimicking fascicles of microtubules found in the axon initial segment

    SciTech Connect

    Chung, Peter J.; Song, Chaeyeon; Deek, Joanna; Miller, Herbert P.; Li, Youli; Choi, Myung Chul; Wilson, Leslie; Feinstein, Stuart C.; Safinya, Cyrus R.

    2016-07-25

    Tau, an intrinsically disordered protein confined to neuronal axons, binds to and regulates microtubule dynamics. Although there have been observations of string-like microtubule fascicles in the axon initial segment (AIS) and hexagonal bundles in neurite-like processes in non-neuronal cells overexpressing Tau, cell-free reconstitutions have not replicated either geometry. Here we map out the energy landscape of Tau-mediated, GTP-dependent ‘active’ microtubule bundles at 37°C, as revealed by synchrotron SAXS and TEM. Widely spaced bundles (wall-to-wall distance Dw–w≈25–41nm) with hexagonal and string-like symmetry are observed, the latter mimicking bundles found in the AIS. A second energy minimum (Dw–w≈16–23nm) is revealed under osmotic pressure. The wide spacing results from a balance between repulsive forces, due to Tau’s projection domain (PD), and a stabilizing sum of transient sub-kBT cationic/anionic charge–charge attractions mediated by weakly penetrating opposing PDs. In the end, we find that this landscape would be significantly affected by charge-altering modifications of Tau associated with neurodegeneration.

  6. Tau mediates microtubule bundle architectures mimicking fascicles of microtubules found in the axon initial segment

    DOE PAGES

    Chung, Peter J.; Song, Chaeyeon; Deek, Joanna; ...

    2016-07-25

    Tau, an intrinsically disordered protein confined to neuronal axons, binds to and regulates microtubule dynamics. Although there have been observations of string-like microtubule fascicles in the axon initial segment (AIS) and hexagonal bundles in neurite-like processes in non-neuronal cells overexpressing Tau, cell-free reconstitutions have not replicated either geometry. Here we map out the energy landscape of Tau-mediated, GTP-dependent ‘active’ microtubule bundles at 37°C, as revealed by synchrotron SAXS and TEM. Widely spaced bundles (wall-to-wall distance Dw–w≈25–41nm) with hexagonal and string-like symmetry are observed, the latter mimicking bundles found in the AIS. A second energy minimum (Dw–w≈16–23nm) is revealed under osmoticmore » pressure. The wide spacing results from a balance between repulsive forces, due to Tau’s projection domain (PD), and a stabilizing sum of transient sub-kBT cationic/anionic charge–charge attractions mediated by weakly penetrating opposing PDs. In the end, we find that this landscape would be significantly affected by charge-altering modifications of Tau associated with neurodegeneration.« less

  7. Velocity modulation of microtubules in electric fields.

    PubMed

    Dujovne, Irene; van den Heuvel, Martin; Shen, Yi; de Graaff, Martijn; Dekker, Cees

    2008-12-01

    We show that the speed of microtubules gliding over a kinesin-coated surface can be controlled over a wide range of values by the application of an electric field. The speed can be increased by up to a factor of 5 compared to the speed at zero field when assisting forces are applied and slowed down to zero velocity for opposing fields. Sideways applied fields also induce significant motion. The kinesin surface density impacts the rate of velocity change, whereas the ATP concentration does not seem to play a major role, provided that it is nonzero. A simple grab-and-release model is presented that explains the velocity change with applied electric fields.

  8. Diffusion of dextran inside microtubule sample

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prodan, Camelia

    2005-03-01

    Microtubules (Mts) are the bones of the cell. Their exterior has been extensively studied but little is known about their interior. We have studied the diffusion of fluorescein labeled dextran in the presence of GDP Mts and taxol stabilized GDP Mts. The diffusion coefficient, D, of different size dextran (10 kD, 40 kD, 70 kD, 500 kD) was measured using fluorescence recovery after photo-bleaching (FRAP). If dextran was present during the assembling of Mts, D was smaller then free diffusion coefficient. When dextran was added after the assembling, D was the same as the free diffusion coefficient. For taxol stabilized Mts (0.90 fill ratio), D was also found the same as the free diffusion coefficient .

  9. Depletion force induced collective motion of microtubules driven by kinesin.

    PubMed

    Inoue, Daisuke; Mahmot, Bulbul; Kabir, Arif Md Rashedul; Farhana, Tamanna Ishrat; Tokuraku, Kiyotaka; Sada, Kazuki; Konagaya, Akihiko; Kakugo, Akira

    2015-11-21

    Collective motion is a fascinating example of coordinated behavior of self-propelled objects, which is often associated with the formation of large scale patterns. Nowadays, the in vitro gliding assay is being considered a model system to experimentally investigate various aspects of group behavior and pattern formation by self-propelled objects. In the in vitro gliding assay, cytoskeletal filaments F-actin or microtubules are driven by the surface immobilized associated biomolecular motors myosin or dynein respectively. Although the F-actin/myosin or microtubule/dynein system was found to be promising in understanding the collective motion and pattern formation by self-propelled objects, the most widely used biomolecular motor system microtubule/kinesin could not be successfully employed so far in this regard. Failure in exhibiting collective motion by kinesin driven microtubules is attributed to the intrinsic properties of kinesin, which was speculated to affect the behavior of individual gliding microtubules and mutual interactions among them. In this work, for the first time, we have demonstrated the collective motion of kinesin driven microtubules by regulating the mutual interaction among the gliding microtubules, by employing a depletion force among them. Proper regulation of the mutual interaction among the gliding microtubules through the employment of the depletion force was found to allow the exhibition of collective motion and stream pattern formation by the microtubules. This work offers a universal means for demonstrating the collective motion using the in vitro gliding assay of biomolecular motor systems and will help obtain a meticulous understanding of the fascinating coordinated behavior and pattern formation by self-propelled objects.

  10. Microtubule assembly in cytoplasmic extracts of Xenopus oocytes and eggs

    PubMed Central

    1987-01-01

    We have investigated the differences in microtubule assembly in cytoplasm from Xenopus oocytes and eggs in vitro. Extracts of activated eggs could be prepared that assembled extensive microtubule networks in vitro using Tetrahymena axonemes or mammalian centrosomes as nucleation centers. Assembly occurred predominantly from the plus-end of the microtubule with a rate constant of 2 microns.min-1.microM-1 (57 s- 1.microM-1). At the in vivo tubulin concentration, this corresponds to the extraordinarily high rate of 40-50 microns.min-1. Microtubule disassembly rates in these extracts were -4.5 microns.min-1 (128 s-1) at the plus-end and -6.9 microns.min-1 (196 s-1) at the minus-end. The critical concentration for plus-end microtubule assembly was 0.4 microM. These extracts also promoted the plus-end assembly of microtubules from bovine brain tubulin, suggesting the presence of an assembly promoting factor in the egg. In contrast to activated eggs, assembly was never observed in extracts prepared from oocytes, even at tubulin concentrations as high as 20 microM. Addition of oocyte extract to egg extracts or to purified brain tubulin inhibited microtubule assembly. These results suggest that there is a plus-end-specific inhibitor of microtubule assembly in the oocyte and a plus-end-specific promoter of assembly in the eggs. These factors may serve to regulate microtubule assembly during early development in Xenopus. PMID:3680377

  11. Centrosome and microtubule instability in aging Drosophila cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schatten, H.; Chakrabarti, A.; Hedrick, J.

    1999-01-01

    Several cytoskeletal changes are associated with aging which includes alterations in muscle structure leading to muscular atrophy, and weakening of the microtubule network which affects cellular secretion and maintenance of cell shape. Weakening of the microtubule network during meiosis in aging oocytes can result in aneuploidy or trisomic zygotes with increasing maternal age. Imbalances of cytoskeletal organization can lead to disease such as Alzheimer's, muscular disorders, and cancer. Because many cytoskeletal diseases are related to age we investigated the effects of aging on microtubule organization in cell cultures of the Drosophila cell model system (Schneider S-1 and Kc23 cell lines). This cell model is increasingly being used as an alternative system to mammalian cell cultures. Drosophila cells are amenable to genetic manipulations and can be used to identify and manipulate genes which are involved in the aging processes. Immunofluorescence, scanning, and transmission electron microscopy were employed for the analysis of microtubule organizing centers (centrosomes) and microtubules at various times after subculturing cells in fresh medium. Our results reveal that centrosomes and the microtubule network becomes significantly affected in aging cells after 5 days of subculture. At 5-14 days of subculture, 1% abnormal out of 3% mitoses were noted which were clearly distinguishable from freshly subcultured control cells in which 3% of cells undergo normal mitosis with bipolar configurations. Microtubules are also affected in the midbody during cell division. The midbody in aging cells becomes up to 10 times longer when compared with midbodies in freshly subcultured cells. During interphase, microtubules are often disrupted and disorganized, which may indicate improper function related to transport of cell organelles along microtubules. These results are likely to help explain some cytoskeletal disorders and diseases related to aging.

  12. Acentrosomal Microtubule Assembly in Mitosis: The Where, When, and How.

    PubMed

    Meunier, Sylvain; Vernos, Isabelle

    2016-02-01

    In mitosis the cell assembles the bipolar spindle, a microtubule (MT)-based apparatus that segregates the duplicated chromosomes into two daughter cells. Most animal cells enter mitosis with duplicated centrosomes that provide an active source of dynamic MTs. However, it is now established that spindle assembly relies on the nucleation of acentrosomal MTs occurring around the chromosomes after nuclear envelope breakdown, and on pre-existing microtubules. Where chromosome-dependent MT nucleation occurs, when MT amplification takes place and how the two pathways function are still key questions that generate some controversies. We reconcile the data and present an integrated model accounting for acentrosomal microtubule assembly in the dividing cell.

  13. Mitochondrial inheritance is mediated by microtubules in mammalian cell division.

    PubMed

    Lawrence, Elizabeth; Mandato, Craig

    2013-11-01

    The mitochondrial network fragments and becomes uniformly dispersed within the cytoplasm when mammalian cells enter mitosis. Such morphology and distribution of mitochondria was previously thought to facilitate the stochastic inheritance of mitochondria by daughter cells. In contrast, we recently reported that mitochondria in dividing mammalian cells are inherited by an ordered mechanism of inheritance mediated by microtubules. We showed that mitochondria are progressively enriched at the cell equator and depleted at the poles throughout division. Furthermore, the mitochondrial distribution during division is dependent on microtubules, indicating an ordered inheritance strategy. The microtubule-mediated positioning of mitochondria in dividing mammalian cells may have functional consequences for cell division and/or mitochondrial inheritance.

  14. Fourier analysis of cell motility: correlation of motility with metastatic potential.

    PubMed Central

    Partin, A W; Schoeniger, J S; Mohler, J L; Coffey, D S

    1989-01-01

    We report the development of a computerized, mathematical system for quantitating the various types of cell motility. This Fourier analysis method simultaneously quantifies for individual cells (i) temporal changes in cell shape represented by cell ruffling, undulation, and pseudopodal extension, (ii) cell translation, and (iii) average cell size and shape. This spatial-temporal Fourier analysis was tested on a series of well-characterized animal tumor cell lines of rat prostatic cancer to study in a quantitative manner the correlation of cell motility with increasing in vivo metastatic potential. Fourier motility coefficients measuring pseudopodal extension correlated best with metastatic potential in the cell lines studied. This study demonstrated that Fourier analysis provides quantitative measurement of cell motility that may be applied to the study of biological processes. This analysis should aid in the study of the motility of individual cells in various areas of cellular and tumor biology. Images PMID:2919174

  15. Reassembly of flagellar B (alpha beta) tubulin into singlet microtubules: consequences for cytoplasmic microtubule structure and assembly

    PubMed Central

    1981-01-01

    B(alpha beta) tubulin was obtained from a homogeneous class of microtubules, the incomplete B subfiber of sea urchin sperm flagellar doublet microtubules, by thermal fractionation. The thermally derived soluble B tubulin fraction (100, 000 g-h) repolymerizes in vitro, yielding microtubule-like structures. The microtubule-associated protein (MAP) composition and certain assembly parameters of thermally derived B tubulin are different from those reported for sonication- derived flageller tubulin and purified vertebrate tubulin. The "microtubules" reassembled from thermally prepared B tubulin are composed of 12-15 protofilaments (73% possess 14 protofilaments). A certain number possess a single "adlumenal component" applied to their inside walls, regardless of the number of protofilaments. Following the first cycle of polymerization, 81% of the B tubulin and essentially 100% of the MAPs remain cold insoluble. Evidence suggests that B tubulin assembles faithfully into a B lattice, creating a j seam between two protofilaments that are laterally bonded in a A-lattice configuration. The significance of these seams is discussed in relation to the mechanism of microtubule assembly, the stability of observed ribbons of protofilaments, and the three-dimensional organization of microtubule-associated components. PMID:7251656

  16. Detection and quantification of microtubule detachment from centrosomes and spindle poles.

    PubMed

    Ganguly, Anutosh; Yang, Hailing; Cabral, Fernando

    2013-01-01

    Microtubule detachment from microtubule organizing centers is an important cellular process required for normal cell proliferation. When cells enter mitosis, microtubule turnover increases along with a concurrent increase in microtubule detachment. MCAK, a kinesin-related protein whose abundance is highest during the early stages of mitosis, has been shown to regulate microtubule detachment. Abnormal increases or decreases in the frequency of detachment interfere with spindle function and inhibit cell division. It has been shown that drugs able to promote microtubule assembly (e.g., paclitaxel, epothilones) prevent cell division by suppressing microtubule detachment from centrosomes. Conversely, cytotoxic concentrations of microtubule destabilizing drugs (e.g., vinblastine, nocodazole), tubulin mutations that cause paclitaxel resistance, and specific β-tubulin isotypes increase the frequency of microtubule detachment. In this chapter, we describe a method to calculate the frequency of microtubule detachment by transfecting cells with EGFP-MAP4 and directly observing detachment by live cell imaging.

  17. Glutamylation on alpha-tubulin is not essential but affects the assembly and functions of a subset of microtubules in Tetrahymena thermophila.

    PubMed

    Wloga, Dorota; Rogowski, Krzysztof; Sharma, Neeraj; Van Dijk, Juliette; Janke, Carsten; Eddé, Bernard; Bré, Marie-Hélène; Levilliers, Nicolette; Redeker, Virginie; Duan, Jianming; Gorovsky, Martin A; Jerka-Dziadosz, Maria; Gaertig, Jacek

    2008-08-01

    Tubulin undergoes glutamylation, a conserved posttranslational modification of poorly understood function. We show here that in the ciliate Tetrahymena, most of the microtubule arrays contain glutamylated tubulin. However, the length of the polyglutamyl side chain is spatially regulated, with the longest side chains present on ciliary and basal body microtubules. We focused our efforts on the function of glutamylation on the alpha-tubulin subunit. By site-directed mutagenesis, we show that all six glutamates of the C-terminal tail domain of alpha-tubulin that provide potential sites for glutamylation are not essential but are needed for normal rates of cell multiplication and cilium-based functions (phagocytosis and cell motility). By comparative phylogeny and biochemical assays, we identify two conserved tubulin tyrosine ligase (TTL) domain proteins, Ttll1p and Ttll9p, as alpha-tubulin-preferring glutamyl ligase enzymes. In an in vitro microtubule glutamylation assay, Ttll1p showed a chain-initiating activity while Ttll9p had primarily a chain-elongating activity. GFP-Ttll1p localized mainly to basal bodies, while GFP-Ttll9p localized to cilia. Disruption of the TTLL1 and TTLL9 genes decreased the rates of cell multiplication and phagocytosis. Cells lacking both genes had fewer cortical microtubules and showed defects in the maturation of basal bodies. We conclude that glutamylation on alpha-tubulin is not essential but is required for efficiency of assembly and function of a subset of microtubule-based organelles. Furthermore, the spatial restriction of modifying enzymes appears to be a major mechanism that drives differential glutamylation at the subcellular level.

  18. Motility modes of the parasite Trypanosoma brucei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Temel, Fatma Zeynep; Qu, Zijie; McAllaster, Michael; de Graffenried, Christopher; Breuer, Kenneth

    2015-11-01

    The parasitic single-celled protozoan Trypanosoma brucei causes African Sleeping Sickness, which is a fatal disease in humans and animals that threatens more than 60 million people in 36 African countries. Cell motility plays a critical role in the developmental phases and dissemination of the parasite. Unlike many other motile cells such as bacteria Escherichia coli or Caulobacter crescentus, the flagellum of T. brucei is attached along the length of its awl-like body, producing a unique mode of motility that is not fully understood or characterized. Here, we report on the motility of T. brucei, which swims using its single flagellum employing both rotating and undulating propulsion modes. We tracked cells in real-time in three dimensions using fluorescent microscopy. Data obtained from experiments using both short-term tracking within the field of view and long-term tracking using a tracking microscope were analyzed. Motility modes and swimming speed were analyzed as functions of cell size, rotation rate and undulation pattern. Research supported by NSF.

  19. Study of human sperm motility post cryopreservation

    PubMed Central

    Oberoi, Bhavni; Kumar, Sushil; Talwar, Pankaj

    2014-01-01

    Background Cryopreservation of spermatozoa is a widely used technique to preserve the fertility of males. It can also benefit the armed forces personnel who are to be sent for long recruitments, while leaving their families behind. This study, apart from studying the effects of freezing and thawing, reveals the effect of the post thaw interval on the motility of the human spermatozoa and thus widens the insemination window period. Methods A detailed semen analysis was carried out as per the WHO guidelines for 25 samples. The samples were then washed, analysed and frozen in liquid nitrogen. The semen samples were subsequently thawed and similarly analysed after 20 min and 40 min of thawing. This was then followed by statistical analysis of the comparative motilities. Results Motility of sperms is found to decrease after cryopreservation. However, the study revealed that after thawing a significant increase in the motility of the sperms was noted with the progression of time (p < 0.05). Conclusion By simulating conditions similar to the in vivo conditions for the post thaw semen samples, we can safely wait, confirm the parameters like motility and count, and then inseminate the samples instead of blindly inseminating them immediately after thawing. PMID:25382909

  20. A monoclonal antibody against the dynein IC1 peptide of sea urchin spermatozoa inhibits the motility of sea urchin, dinoflagellate, and human flagellar axonemes.

    PubMed Central

    Gagnon, C; White, D; Huitorel, P; Cosson, J

    1994-01-01

    To investigate the role of axonemal components in the mechanics and regulation of flagellar movement, we have generated a series of monoclonal antibodies (mAb) against sea urchin (Lytechinus pictus) sperm axonemal proteins, selected for their ability to inhibit the motility of demembranated sperm models. One of these antibodies, mAb D1, recognizes an antigen of 142 kDa on blots of sea urchin axonemal proteins and of purified outer arm dynein, suggesting that it acts by binding to the heaviest intermediate chain (IC1) of the dynein arm. mAb D1 blocks the motility of demembranated sea urchin spermatozoa by modifying the beating amplitude and shear angle without affecting the ATPase activity of purified dynein or of demembranated immotile spermatozoa. Furthermore, mAb D1 had only a marginal effect on the velocity of sliding microtubules in trypsin-treated axonemes. This antibody was also capable of inhibiting the motility of flagella of Oxyrrhis marina, a primitive dinoflagellate, and those of demembranated human spermatozoa. Localization of the antigen recognized by mAb D1 by immunofluorescence reveals its presence on the axonemes of flagella from sea urchin spermatozoa and O. marina but not on the cortical microtubule network of the dinoflagellate. These results are consistent with a dynamic role for the dynein intermediate chain IC1 in the bending and/or wave propagation of flagellar axonemes. Images PMID:7841521

  1. Effects of the KIF2C neck peptide on microtubules: lateral disintegration of microtubules and β-structure formation.

    PubMed

    Shimizu, Youské; Shimizu, Takashi; Nara, Masayuki; Kikumoto, Mahito; Kojima, Hiroaki; Morii, Hisayuki

    2013-04-01

    Members of the kinesin-13 sub-family, including KIF2C, depolymerize microtubules. The positive charge-rich 'neck' region extending from the N-terminus of the catalytic head is considered to be important in the depolymerization activity. Chemically synthesized peptides, covering the basic region (A182-E200), induced a sigmoidal increase in the turbidity of a microtubule suspension. The increase was suppressed by salt addition or by reduction of basicity by amino acid substitutions. Electron microscopic observations revealed ring structures surrounding the microtubules at high peptide concentrations. Using the peptide A182-D218, we also detected free thin straight filaments, probably protofilaments disintegrated from microtubules. Therefore, the neck region, even without the catalytic head domain, may induce lateral disintegration of microtubules. With microtubules lacking anion-rich C-termini as a result of subtilisin treatment, addition of the peptide induced only a moderate increase in turbidity, and rings and protofilaments were rarely detected, while aggregations, also thought to be caused by lateral disintegration, were often observed in electron micrographs. Thus, the C-termini are not crucial for the action of the peptides in lateral disintegration but contribute to structural stabilization of the protofilaments. Previous structural studies indicated that the neck region of KIF2C is flexible, but our IR analysis suggests that the cation-rich region (K190-A204) forms β-structure in the presence of microtubules, which may be of significance with regard to the action of the neck region. Therefore, the neck region of KIF2C is sufficient to cause disintegration of microtubules into protofilaments, and this may contribute to the ability of KIF2C to cause depolymerization of microtubules.

  2. Study of Opto-Electronic Properties of a Single Microtubule in the Microwave Regime

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2011-12-11

    electronic properties of a single Microtubule Google Mountain view campus, workshop on quantum biology 22 October 2010 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v...Chemists, Tsukuba, Japan March 1-3, (2011) 3. Quantum aspects of microtubule: Direct experimental evidence for the existence of quantum states in...microtubule, Towards a science of consciousness May 2-8 (2011), Sweden 4. Electromagnetic energy of cells and microtubule: how microtubule research

  3. Multiscale polar theory of microtubule and motor-protein assemblies.

    PubMed

    Gao, Tong; Blackwell, Robert; Glaser, Matthew A; Betterton, M D; Shelley, Michael J

    2015-01-30

    Microtubules and motor proteins are building blocks of self-organized subcellular biological structures such as the mitotic spindle and the centrosomal microtubule array. These same ingredients can form new "bioactive" liquid-crystalline fluids that are intrinsically out of equilibrium and which display complex flows and defect dynamics. It is not yet well understood how microscopic activity, which involves polarity-dependent interactions between motor proteins and microtubules, yields such larger-scale dynamical structures. In our multiscale theory, Brownian dynamics simulations of polar microtubule ensembles driven by cross-linking motors allow us to study microscopic organization and stresses. Polarity sorting and cross-link relaxation emerge as two polar-specific sources of active destabilizing stress. On larger length scales, our continuum Doi-Onsager theory captures the hydrodynamic flows generated by polarity-dependent active stresses. The results connect local polar structure to flow structures and defect dynamics.

  4. Multiscale Polar Theory of Microtubule and Motor-Protein Assemblies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, Tong; Blackwell, Robert; Glaser, Matthew A.; Betterton, M. D.; Shelley, Michael J.

    2015-01-01

    Microtubules and motor proteins are building blocks of self-organized subcellular biological structures such as the mitotic spindle and the centrosomal microtubule array. These same ingredients can form new "bioactive" liquid-crystalline fluids that are intrinsically out of equilibrium and which display complex flows and defect dynamics. It is not yet well understood how microscopic activity, which involves polarity-dependent interactions between motor proteins and microtubules, yields such larger-scale dynamical structures. In our multiscale theory, Brownian dynamics simulations of polar microtubule ensembles driven by cross-linking motors allow us to study microscopic organization and stresses. Polarity sorting and cross-link relaxation emerge as two polar-specific sources of active destabilizing stress. On larger length scales, our continuum Doi-Onsager theory captures the hydrodynamic flows generated by polarity-dependent active stresses. The results connect local polar structure to flow structures and defect dynamics.

  5. Mechanism and Dynamics of Breakage of Fluorescent Microtubules

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Honglian; Xu, Chunhua; Liu, Chunxiang; Qu, E.; Yuan, Ming; Li, Zhaolin; Cheng, Bingying; Zhang, Daozhong

    2006-01-01

    The breakage of fluorescence-labeled microtubules under irradiation of excitation light is found in our experiments. Its mechanism is studied. The results indicate that free radicals are the main reason for the photosensitive breakage. Furthermore, the mechanical properties of the microtubules are probed with a dual-optical tweezers system. It is found that the fluorescence-labeled microtubules are much easier to extend compared with those without fluorescence. Such microtubules can be extended by 30%, and the force for breaking them up is only several piconewtons. In addition, we find that the breakup of the protofilaments is not simultaneous but step-by-step, which further confirms that the interaction between protofilaments is fairly weak. PMID:16387782

  6. Multiscale Polar Theory of Microtubule and Motor-Protein Assemblies

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Tong; Blackwell, Robert; Glaser, Matthew A.; Betterton, M. D.; Shelley, Michael J.

    2015-01-01

    Microtubules and motor proteins are building blocks of self-organized subcellular biological structures such as the mitotic spindle and the centrosomal microtubule array. These same ingredients can form new “bioactive” liquid-crystalline fluids that are intrinsically out of equilibrium and which display complex flows and defect dynamics. It is not yet well understood how microscopic activity, which involves polarity-dependent interactions between motor proteins and microtubules, yields such larger-scale dynamical structures. In our multiscale theory, Brownian dynamics simulations of polar microtubule ensembles driven by cross-linking motors allow us to study microscopic organization and stresses. Polarity sorting and cross-link relaxation emerge as two polar-specific sources of active destabilizing stress. On larger length scales, our continuum Doi-Onsager theory captures the hydrodynamic flows generated by polarity-dependent active stresses. The results connect local polar structure to flow structures and defect dynamics. PMID:25679909

  7. Cortical microtubules in sweet clover columella cells developed in microgravity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hilaire, E.; Paulsen, A. Q.; Brown, C. S.; Guikema, J. A.; Spooner, B. S. (Principal Investigator)

    1995-01-01

    Electron micrographs of columella cells from sweet clover seedlings grown and fixed in microgravity revealed longitudinal and cross sectioned cortical microtubules. This is the first report demonstrating the presence and stability of this network in plants in microgravity.

  8. Multiscale polar theory of microtubule and motor-protein assemblies

    DOE PAGES

    Gao, Tong; Blackwell, Robert; Glaser, Matthew A.; ...

    2015-01-27

    Microtubules and motor proteins are building blocks of self-organized subcellular biological structures such as the mitotic spindle and the centrosomal microtubule array. These same ingredients can form new “bioactive” liquid-crystalline fluids that are intrinsically out of equilibrium and which display complex flows and defect dynamics. It is not yet well understood how microscopic activity, which involves polarity-dependent interactions between motor proteins and microtubules, yields such larger-scale dynamical structures. In our multiscale theory, Brownian dynamics simulations of polar microtubule ensembles driven by cross-linking motors allow us to study microscopic organization and stresses. Polarity sorting and cross-link relaxation emerge as two polar-specificmore » sources of active destabilizing stress. On larger length scales, our continuum Doi-Onsager theory captures the hydrodynamic flows generated by polarity-dependent active stresses. Finally, the results connect local polar structure to flow structures and defect dynamics.« less

  9. Multiscale polar theory of microtubule and motor-protein assemblies

    SciTech Connect

    Gao, Tong; Blackwell, Robert; Glaser, Matthew A.; Betterton, Meredith D.; Shelley, Michael J.

    2015-01-27

    Microtubules and motor proteins are building blocks of self-organized subcellular biological structures such as the mitotic spindle and the centrosomal microtubule array. These same ingredients can form new “bioactive” liquid-crystalline fluids that are intrinsically out of equilibrium and which display complex flows and defect dynamics. It is not yet well understood how microscopic activity, which involves polarity-dependent interactions between motor proteins and microtubules, yields such larger-scale dynamical structures. In our multiscale theory, Brownian dynamics simulations of polar microtubule ensembles driven by cross-linking motors allow us to study microscopic organization and stresses. Polarity sorting and cross-link relaxation emerge as two polar-specific sources of active destabilizing stress. On larger length scales, our continuum Doi-Onsager theory captures the hydrodynamic flows generated by polarity-dependent active stresses. Finally, the results connect local polar structure to flow structures and defect dynamics.

  10. The physical basis of microtubule structure and stability.

    PubMed

    Sept, David; Baker, Nathan A; McCammon, J Andrew

    2003-10-01

    Microtubules are cylindrical polymers found in every eukaryotic cell. They have a unique helical structure that has implications at both the cellular level, in terms of the functions they perform, and at the multicellular level, such as determining the left-right symmetry in plants. Through the combination of an atomically detailed model for a microtubule and large-scale computational techniques for computing electrostatic interactions, we are able to explain the observed microtubule structure. On the basis of the lateral interactions between protofilaments, we have determined that B lattice is the most favorable configuration. Further, we find that these lateral bonds are significantly weaker than the longitudinal bonds along protofilaments. This explains observations of microtubule disassembly and may serve as another step toward understanding the basis for dynamic instability.

  11. A theory of microtubule catastrophes and their regulation.

    PubMed

    Brun, Ludovic; Rupp, Beat; Ward, Jonathan J; Nédélec, François

    2009-12-15

    Dynamic instability, in which abrupt transitions occur between growing and shrinking states, is an intrinsic property of microtubules that is regulated by both mechanics and specialized proteins. We discuss a model of dynamic instability based on the popular idea that growth is maintained by a cap at the tip of the fiber. The loss of this cap is thought to trigger the transition from growth to shrinkage, called a catastrophe. The model includes longitudinal interactions between the terminal tubulins of each protofilament and "gating rescues" between neighboring protofilaments. These interactions allow individual protofilaments to transiently shorten during a phase of overall microtubule growth. The model reproduces the reported dependency of the catastrophe rate on tubulin concentration, the time between tubulin dilution and catastrophe, and the induction of microtubule catastrophes by walking depolymerases. The model also reproduces the comet tail distribution that is characteristic of proteins that bind to the tips of growing microtubules.

  12. Mechanisms to Avoid and Correct Erroneous Kinetochore-Microtubule Attachments

    PubMed Central

    Lampson, Michael A.; Grishchuk, Ekaterina L.

    2017-01-01

    In dividing vertebrate cells multiple microtubules must connect to mitotic kinetochores in a highly stereotypical manner, with each sister kinetochore forming microtubule attachments to only one spindle pole. The exact sequence of events by which this goal is achieved varies considerably from cell to cell because of the variable locations of kinetochores and spindle poles, and randomness of initial microtubule attachments. These chance encounters with the kinetochores nonetheless ultimately lead to the desired outcome with high fidelity and in a limited time frame, providing one of the most startling examples of biological self-organization. This chapter discusses mechanisms that contribute to accurate chromosome segregation by helping dividing cells to avoid and resolve improper microtubule attachments. PMID:28067761

  13. Regulation of flagellar motility by the conserved flagellar protein CG34110/Ccdc135/FAP50

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Yong; Cochran, Deborah A.; Gargano, Mary D.; King, Iryna; Samhat, Nayef K.; Burger, Benjain P.; Sabourin, Katherine R.; Hou, Yuqing; Awata, Junya; Parry, David A.D.; Marshall, Wallace F.; Witman, George B.; Lu, Xiangyi

    2011-01-01

    Eukaryotic cilia and flagella are vital sensory and motile organelles. The calcium channel PKD2 mediates sensory perception on cilia and flagella, and defects in this can contribute to ciliopathic diseases. Signaling from Pkd2-dependent Ca2+ rise in the cilium to downstream effectors may require intermediary proteins that are largely unknown. To identify these proteins, we carried out genetic screens for mutations affecting Drosophila melanogaster sperm storage, a process mediated by Drosophila Pkd2. Here we show that a new mutation lost boys (lobo) encodes a conserved flagellar protein CG34110, which corresponds to vertebrate Ccdc135 (E = 6e-78) highly expressed in ciliated respiratory epithelia and sperm, and to FAP50 (E = 1e-28) in the Chlamydomonas reinhardtii flagellar proteome. CG34110 localizes along the fly sperm flagellum. FAP50 is tightly associated with the outer doublet microtubules of the axoneme and appears not to be a component of the central pair, radial spokes, dynein arms, or structures defined by the mbo waveform mutants. Phenotypic analyses indicate that both Pkd2 and lobo specifically affect sperm movement into the female storage receptacle. We hypothesize that the CG34110/Ccdc135/FAP50 family of conserved flagellar proteins functions within the axoneme to mediate Pkd2-dependent processes in the sperm flagellum and other motile cilia. PMID:21289096

  14. Mitochondrial organization and motility probed by two-photon microscopy in cultured mouse brainstem neurons

    SciTech Connect

    Mueller, Michael . E-mail: mike@neuro-physiol.med.uni-goettingen.de; Mironov, Sergej L.; Ivannikov, Maxim V.; Schmidt, Joerg; Richter, Diethelm W.

    2005-02-01

    Two-photon microscopy of rhodamine 123-labeled mitochondria revealed that mitochondria of neurons cultured from mouse respiratory center form functionally coupled, dynamically organized aggregates such as chains and clusters, while single mitochondria were rarely seen. Mitochondrial chain structures predominate in dendrites, while irregularly shaped mitochondrial clusters are mostly found in the soma. Both types of mitochondrial structures showed chaotic Brownian motions and the mitochondrial chains also revealed well-directed movements. The latter dislocations were arrested upon mitochondrial depolarization or blockade of mitochondrial ATP synthesis. Depolymerization of microtubules by colchicine or nocodazole or inhibition of protein phosphatases by calyculin A disrupted mitochondrial chains and the mitochondria accumulated in the soma. Forskolin and IBMX reversibly blocked directed movements of mitochondria, but did not affect their overall spatial distribution. Thus, protein phosphorylation seems to control both mitochondrial transport and organization. Protein phosphorylation downstream of enhanced cytosolic cAMP levels apparently regulates the transition from motile to non-motile mitochondria, while phosphorylation resulting from inhibition of types 1 and 2A protein phosphatases massively disturbs mitochondrial organization. The complex phosphorylation processes seem to control the close interaction of mitochondria and cytoskeleton which may guarantee that mitochondria are immobilized at energetic hot spots and rearranged in response to changes in local energy demands.

  15. Trichomonas vaginalis: microtubule cytoskeleton distribution using fluorescent taxoid.

    PubMed

    Lecke, Sheila B; Tasca, Tiana; Souto, André A; De Carli, Geraldo A

    2002-10-01

    Trichomonas vaginalis is a flagellated parasitic protist of the human urogenital tract. The parasite has a poorly known cytoskeleton formed by an axostyle and a pelta, which are formed by stable structures such as microtubules, essential for the maintenance of cell shape and organization. FLUTAX-2 is an active fluorescent derivative of Taxol, binds to alphabeta-tubulin dimer polymerized. In this paper we present the analysis of microtubule distribution in living trophozoites of T. vaginalis using FLUTAX-2.

  16. EML proteins in microtubule regulation and human disease.

    PubMed

    Fry, Andrew M; O'Regan, Laura; Montgomery, Jessica; Adib, Rozita; Bayliss, Richard

    2016-10-15

    The EMLs are a conserved family of microtubule-associated proteins (MAPs). The founding member was discovered in sea urchins as a 77-kDa polypeptide that co-purified with microtubules. This protein, termed EMAP for echinoderm MAP, was the major non-tubulin component present in purified microtubule preparations made from unfertilized sea urchin eggs [J. Cell Sci. (1993) 104: , 445-450; J. Cell Sci. (1987) 87: (Pt 1), 71-84]. Orthologues of EMAP were subsequently identified in other echinoderms, such as starfish and sand dollar, and then in more distant eukaryotes, including flies, worms and vertebrates, where the name of ELP or EML (both for EMAP-like protein) has been adopted [BMC Dev. Biol. (2008) 8: , 110; Dev. Genes Evol. (2000) 210: , 2-10]. The common property of these proteins is their ability to decorate microtubules. However, whether they are associated with particular microtubule populations or exercise specific functions in different microtubule-dependent processes remains unknown. Furthermore, although there is limited evidence that they regulate microtubule dynamics, the biochemical mechanisms of their molecular activity have yet to be explored. Nevertheless, interest in these proteins has grown substantially because of the identification of EML mutations in neuronal disorders and oncogenic fusions in human cancers. Here, we summarize our current knowledge of the expression, localization and structure of what is proving to be an interesting and important class of MAPs. We also speculate about their function in microtubule regulation and highlight how the studies of EMLs in human diseases may open up novel avenues for patient therapy.

  17. Structure of cortical microtubule arrays in plant cells

    PubMed Central

    1978-01-01

    Serial sectioning was used to track the position and measure the lengths of cortical microtubules in glutaraldehyde-osmium tetroxide- fixed root tip cells. Microtubules lying against the longitudinal walls during interphase, those overlying developing xylem thickenings, and those in pre-prophase bands are oriented circumferentially but on average are only about one-eighth of the cell circumference in length, i.e., 2-4 micrometer. The arrays consist of overlapping component microtubules, interconnected by cross bridges where they are grouped and also connected to the plasma membrane. Microtubule lengths vary greatly in any given array, but the probability that any pass right around the cell is extremely low. The majority of the microtubule terminations lie in statistically random positions in the arrays, but nonrandomness in the form of groups of terminations and terminations in short lines parallel to the axis of cell elongation has been observed. Low temperature induces microtubule shortening and increases the frequency of C-shaped terminations over the 1.7% found under normal conditions; colchicine and high pressures produce abnormally large proportions of very short microtubules amongst those that survive the treatments. Deuterium oxide (D2O) treatment probably induces the formation of additional microtubules as distinct from increasing the length of those already present. The distribution of C-shaped terminations provides evidence for at least local polarity in the arrays. The validity of the findings is discussed, along with implications for the development, maintenance, and orientation of the arrays and their possible relationship to the orientation of cellulose deposition. PMID:350889

  18. Microgravity, bacteria, and the influence of motility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Benoit, Michael R.; Klaus, David M.

    Space microbiology studies date back to the 1960s, with most investigations reporting that increased bacterial populations occur in flight compared to ground controls. Several exceptions to these findings, however, have created controversy and complicated explanations of how, or whether, microgravity affects microorganisms. Upon closer examination of the literature, we identified a trend relating cell motility to experimental outcome. Related studies conducted in microgravity analog devices, such as the clinostat or rotating wall vessel bioreactor, further corroborate this trend. We review the literature regarding bacterial growth experiments conducted in space (and using microgravity analogs) and analyze the influence of bacterial motility.

  19. Response of a Motile/Non-Motile Escherichia coli Front to Hydrodynamic excitations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baabour, Magali; Douarche, Carine; Salin, Dominique

    2014-11-01

    In a recent study (Douarche et al. PRL 102, 198101 (2009)), it has been shown that the motility of Escherichia coli (E. coli) is highly correlated to the oxygen level in a minimal medium: bacteria swim as long as they are provided with oxygen but reversibly transit to a non-motile state when they lack of it. Hence, when oxygen diffuses into an anaerobic sample of non-motile bacteria, a propagating front delineates a region of motile bacteria where oxygen is present from a region of non-motile ones where the oxygen is still not present. To study the response of this front to hydrodynamics excitation, we use the same fluorescent E. coli bacterial solution in rectangular cross section glass cells open to air (oxygen) at one inlet. After bacteria have consumed the oxygen of the solution, the presence of the oxygen only at the open edge of the sample leads to the formation of an analogous stationary front between motile and non-motile bacteria. We follow the response of this front to hydrodynamics flows such as an oscillating Poiseuille flow or natural convection. We analyze both the macroscopic behavior (shape and width) of the front as well as the microscopic displacements of individual bacteria. The dispersive behavior of this bacterial front is compared to the one of equivalent. Collaboration between Laboratories FAST and LPS, Univ Paris Sud and CNRS.

  20. Multiscale method for modeling binding phenomena involving large objects: application to kinesin motor domains motion along microtubules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Lin; Alper, Joshua; Alexov, Emil

    2016-03-01

    Many biological phenomena involve the binding of proteins to a large object. Because the electrostatic forces that guide binding act over large distances, truncating the size of the system to facilitate computational modeling frequently yields inaccurate results. Our multiscale approach implements a computational focusing method that permits computation of large systems without truncating the electrostatic potential and achieves the high resolution required for modeling macromolecular interactions, all while keeping the computational time reasonable. We tested our approach on the motility of various kinesin motor domains. We found that electrostatics help guide kinesins as they walk: N-kinesins towards the plus-end, and C-kinesins towards the minus-end of microtubules. Our methodology enables computation in similar, large systems including protein binding to DNA, viruses, and membranes.

  1. Multiscale method for modeling binding phenomena involving large objects: application to kinesin motor domains motion along microtubules.

    PubMed

    Li, Lin; Alper, Joshua; Alexov, Emil

    2016-03-18

    Many biological phenomena involve the binding of proteins to a large object. Because the electrostatic forces that guide binding act over large distances, truncating the size of the system to facilitate computational modeling frequently yields inaccurate results. Our multiscale approach implements a computational focusing method that permits computation of large systems without truncating the electrostatic potential and achieves the high resolution required for modeling macromolecular interactions, all while keeping the computational time reasonable. We tested our approach on the motility of various kinesin motor domains. We found that electrostatics help guide kinesins as they walk: N-kinesins towards the plus-end, and C-kinesins towards the minus-end of microtubules. Our methodology enables computation in similar, large systems including protein binding to DNA, viruses, and membranes.

  2. Dynein prevents erroneous kinetochore-microtubule attachments in mitosis.

    PubMed

    Barisic, Marin; Maiato, Helder

    2015-01-01

    Equal distribution of the genetic material during cell division relies on efficient congression of chromosomes to the metaphase plate. Prior to their alignment, the Dynein motor recruited to kinetochores transports a fraction of laterally-attached chromosomes along microtubules toward the spindle poles. By doing that, Dynein not only contributes to chromosome movements, but also prevents premature stabilization of end-on kinetochore-microtubule attachments. This is achieved by 2 parallel mechanisms: 1) Dynein-mediated poleward movement of chromosomes counteracts opposite polar-ejection forces (PEFs) on chromosome arms by the microtubule plus-end-directed motors chromokinesins. Otherwise, they could stabilize erroneous syntelic kinetochore-microtubule attachments and lead to the random ejection of chromosomes away from the spindle poles; and 2) By transporting chromosomes to the spindle poles, Dynein brings the former to the zone of highest Aurora A kinase activity, further destabilizing kinetochore-microtubule attachments. Thus, Dynein plays an important role in keeping chromosome segregation error-free by preventing premature stabilization of kinetochore-microtubule attachments near the spindle poles.

  3. Microfilament Distribution in Maize Meiotic Mutants Correlates with Microtubule Organization.

    PubMed Central

    Staiger, CJ; Cande, WZ

    1991-01-01

    Microtubules and microfilaments often codistribute in plants; their presumed interaction can be tested with drugs although it is not always clear that these are without side effects. In this study, we exploited mutants defective in meiotic cell division to investigate in a noninvasive way the relationship between the two cytoskeletal elements. By staining unfixed, permeabilized cells with rhodamine-phalloidin, spatial and temporal changes in microfilament distribution during maize meiosis were examined. In wild-type microsporocytes, a microtubule array that radiates from the nucleus disappeared during spindle formation and returned at late telophase. This result differed from the complex cytoplasmic microfilament array that is present at all stages, including karyokinesis and cytokinesis. During division, a second class of microfilaments also was observed in the spindle and phragmoplast. To analyze this apparent association of microtubules and microfilaments, we examined several meiotic mutants known to have stage-specific disruptions in their microtubule arrays. Two mutations that altered the number or form of meiotic spindles also led to a dramatic reorganization of F-actin. In contrast, rearrangement of nonspindle, cytoplasmic microtubules did not lead to concomitant changes in F-actin distribution. These results suggested that microtubules and microfilaments interact in a cell cycle-specific and site-specific fashion during higher plant meiosis. PMID:12324607

  4. Elastic response, buckling, and instability of microtubules under radial indentation.

    PubMed

    Schaap, Iwan A T; Carrasco, Carolina; de Pablo, Pedro J; MacKintosh, Frederick C; Schmidt, Christoph F

    2006-08-15

    We tested the mechanical properties of single microtubules by lateral indentation with the tip of an atomic force microscope. Indentations up to approximately 3.6 nm, i.e., 15% of the microtubule diameter, resulted in an approximately linear elastic response, and indentations were reversible without hysteresis. At an indentation force of around 0.3 nN we observed an instability corresponding to an approximately 1-nm indentation step in the taxol-stabilized microtubules, which could be due to partial or complete rupture of a relatively small number of lateral or axial tubulin-tubulin bonds. These indentations were reversible with hysteresis when the tip was retracted and no trace of damage was observed in subsequent high-resolution images. Higher forces caused substantial damage to the microtubules, which either led to depolymerization or, occasionally, to slowly reannealing holes in the microtubule wall. We modeled the experimental results using finite-element methods and find that the simple assumption of a homogeneous isotropic material, albeit structured with the characteristic protofilament corrugations, is sufficient to explain the linear elastic response of microtubules.

  5. Accelerated actin filament polymerization from microtubule plus-ends

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  6. Fluorescent markers of the microtubule cytoskeleton in Zymoseptoria tritici

    PubMed Central

    Schuster, M.; Kilaru, S.; Latz, M.; Steinberg, G.

    2015-01-01

    The microtubule cytoskeleton supports vital processes in fungal cells, including hyphal growth and mitosis. Consequently, it is a target for fungicides, such as benomyl. The use of fluorescent fusion proteins to illuminate microtubules and microtubule-associated proteins has led to a break-through in our understanding of their dynamics and function in fungal cells. Here, we introduce fluorescent markers to visualize microtubules and accessory proteins in the wheat pathogen Zymoseptoria tritici. We fused enhanced green-fluorescent protein to α-tubulin (ZtTub2), to ZtPeb1, a homologue of the mammalian plus-end binding protein EB1, and to ZtGrc1, a component of the minus-end located γ-tubulin ring complex, involved in the nucleation of microtubules. In vivo observation confirms the localization and dynamic behaviour of all three markers. These marker proteins are useful tools for understanding the organization and importance of the microtubule cytoskeleton in Z. tritici. PMID:25857261

  7. Cooperative lattice dynamics and anomalous fluctuations of microtubules.

    PubMed

    Mohrbach, Hervé; Johner, Albert; Kulić, Igor M

    2012-02-01

    Microtubules have been in the focus of biophysical research for several decades. However, the confusing and mutually contradictory results regarding their elasticity and fluctuations have cast doubt on their present understanding. In this paper, we present the empirical evidence for the existence of discrete guanosine diphosphate (GDP)-tubulin fluctuations between a curved and a straight configuration at room temperature as well as for conformational tubulin cooperativity. Guided by a number of experimental findings, we build the case for a novel microtubule model, with the principal result that microtubules can spontaneously form micron-sized cooperative helical states with unique elastic and dynamic features. The polymorphic dynamics of the microtubule lattice resulting from the tubulin bistability quantitatively explains several experimental puzzles, including anomalous scaling of dynamic fluctuations of grafted microtubules, their apparent length-stiffness relation, and their remarkable curved-helical appearance in general. We point out that the multistability and cooperative switching of tubulin dimers could participate in important cellular processes, and could in particular lead to efficient mechanochemical signaling along single microtubules.

  8. Ciliary microtubule capping structures contain a mammalian kinetochore antigen

    PubMed Central

    1990-01-01

    Structures that cap the plus ends of microtubules may be involved in the regulation of their assembly and disassembly. Growing and disassembling microtubules in the mitotic apparatus are capped by kinetochores and ciliary and flagellar microtubules are capped by the central microtubule cap and distal filaments. To compare the ciliary caps with kinetochores, isolated Tetrahymena cilia were stained with CREST (Calcinosis/phenomenon esophageal dysmotility, sclerodactyly, telangiectasia) antisera known to stain kinetochores. Immunofluorescence microscopy revealed that a CREST antiserum stained the distal tips of cilia that contained capping structures but did not stain axonemes that lacked capping structures. Both Coomassie blue- stained gels and Western blots probed with CREST antiserum revealed that a 97-kD antigen copurifies with the capping structures. Affinity- purified antibodies to the 97-kD ciliary protein stained the tips of cap-containing Tetrahymena cilia and the kinetochores in HeLa, Chinese hamster ovary, and Indian muntjak cells. These results suggest that at least one polypeptide found in the kinetochore is present in ciliary microtubule capping structures and that there may be a structural and/or functional homology between these structures that cap the plus ends of microtubules. PMID:2106524

  9. A coarse-grained model of microtubule self-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Regmi, Chola; Cheng, Shengfeng

    Microtubules play critical roles in cell structures and functions. They also serve as a model system to stimulate the next-generation smart, dynamic materials. A deep understanding of their self-assembly process and biomechanical properties will not only help elucidate how microtubules perform biological functions, but also lead to exciting insight on how microtubule dynamics can be altered or even controlled for specific purposes such as suppressing the division of cancer cells. Combining all-atom molecular dynamics (MD) simulations and the essential dynamics coarse-graining method, we construct a coarse-grained (CG) model of the tubulin protein, which is the building block of microtubules. In the CG model a tubulin dimer is represented as an elastic network of CG sites, the locations of which are determined by examining the protein dynamics of the tubulin and identifying the essential dynamic domains. Atomistic MD modeling is employed to directly compute the tubulin bond energies in the surface lattice of a microtubule, which are used to parameterize the interactions between CG building blocks. The CG model is then used to study the self-assembly pathways, kinetics, dynamics, and nanomechanics of microtubules.

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

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    1999-01-01

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

  11. Both microtubule-stabilizing and microtubule-destabilizing drugs inhibit hypoxia-inducible factor-1alpha accumulation and activity by disrupting microtubule function.

    PubMed

    Escuin, Daniel; Kline, Erik R; Giannakakou, Paraskevi

    2005-10-01

    We have recently identified a mechanistic link between disruption of the microtubule cytoskeleton and inhibition of tumor angiogenesis via the hypoxia-inducible factor-1 (HIF-1) pathway. Based on this model, we hypothesized that other microtubule-targeting drugs may have a similar effect on HIF-1alpha. To test that hypothesis, we studied the effects of different clinically relevant microtubule-disrupting agents, including taxotere, epothilone B, discodermolide, vincristine, 2-methoxyestradiol, and colchicine. In all cases, HIF-1alpha protein, but not mRNA, was down-regulated in a drug dose-dependent manner. In addition, HIF-1alpha transcriptional activity was also inhibited by all drugs tested. To further examine whether these effects were dependent on microtubule network disruption, we tested the ability of epothilone B to inhibit HIF-1alpha protein in the human ovarian cancer cell line 1A9 and its beta-tubulin mutant epothilone-resistant subclone 1A9/A8. Our data showed that epothilone B treatment down-regulated HIF-1alpha protein in the parental 1A9 cells but had no effect in the resistant 1A9/A8 cells. These observations were confirmed by confocal microscopy, which showed impaired nuclear accumulation of HIF-1alpha in parental 1A9 cells at epothilone B concentrations that induced extensive microtubule stabilization. In contrast, epothilone B treatment had no effect on either microtubules or HIF-1alpha nuclear accumulation in the resistant 1A9/A8 cells. Furthermore, epothilone B inhibited HIF-1 transcriptional activity in 1A9 cells, as evidenced by a hypoxia response element-luciferase reporter assay, but had no effect on HIF-1 activity in the resistant 1A9/A8 cells. These data directly link beta-tubulin drug binding with HIF-1alpha protein inhibition. Our results further provide a strong rationale for testing taxanes and epothilones in clinical trials targeting HIF-1 in cancer patients.

  12. The actin gene ACT1 is required for phagocytosis, motility, and cell separation of Tetrahymena thermophila.

    PubMed

    Williams, Norman E; Tsao, Che-Chia; Bowen, Josephine; Hehman, Gery L; Williams, Ruth J; Frankel, Joseph

    2006-03-01

    A previously identified Tetrahymena thermophila actin gene (C. G. Cupples and R. E. Pearlman, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 83:5160-5164, 1986), here called ACT1, was disrupted by insertion of a neo3 cassette. Cells in which all expressed copies of this gene were disrupted exhibited intermittent and extremely slow motility and severely curtailed phagocytic uptake. Transformation of these cells with inducible genetic constructs that contained a normal ACT1 gene restored motility. Use of an epitope-tagged construct permitted visualization of Act1p in the isolated axonemes of these rescued cells. In ACT1Delta mutant cells, ultrastructural abnormalities of outer doublet microtubules were present in some of the axonemes. Nonetheless, these cells were still able to assemble cilia after deciliation. The nearly paralyzed ACT1Delta cells completed cleavage furrowing normally, but the presumptive daughter cells often failed to separate from one another and later became reintegrated. Clonal analysis revealed that the cell cycle length of the ACT1Delta cells was approximately double that of wild-type controls. Clones could nonetheless be maintained for up to 15 successive fissions, suggesting that the ACT1 gene is not essential for cell viability or growth. Examination of the cell cortex with monoclonal antibodies revealed that whereas elongation of ciliary rows and formation of oral structures were normal, the ciliary rows of reintegrated daughter cells became laterally displaced and sometimes rejoined indiscriminately across the former division furrow. We conclude that Act1p is required in Tetrahymena thermophila primarily for normal ciliary motility and for phagocytosis and secondarily for the final separation of daughter cells.

  13. Regulation of vesicle transport and cell motility by Golgi-localized Dbs

    PubMed Central

    Fitzpatrick, Ethan R; Hu, Tinghui; Ciccarelli, Bryan T; Whitehead, Ian P

    2014-01-01

    DBS/MCF2L has been recently identified as a risk locus for osteoarthritis. It encodes a guanine nucleotide exchange factor (Dbs) that has been shown to regulate both normal and tumor cell motility. In the current study, we have determined that endogenous Dbs is predominantly expressed as 2 isoforms, a 130 kDa form (Dbs-130) that is localized to the Golgi complex, and an 80 kDa form (Dbs-80) that is localized to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). We have previously described an inhibitor that binds to the RhoGEF domain of Dbs and blocks its transforming activity. Here we show that the inhibitor localizes to the Golgi, where it specifically interacts with Dbs-130. Inhibition of endogenous Dbs-130 activity is associated with reduced levels of activated Cdc42, enlarged Golgi, and resistance to Brefeldin A-mediated Golgi dispersal, suggesting a role for Dbs in vesicle transport. Cells treated with the inhibitor exhibit normal protein transport from the ER to the Golgi, but are defective in transport from the Golgi to the plasma membrane. Inhibition of Dbs-130 in MDA-MB-231 human breast tumor cells limits motility in both transwell and wound healing assays, but appears to have no effect on the organization of the microtubule cytoskeleton. The reduced motility is associated with a failure to reorient the Golgi toward the leading edge. This is consistent with the Golgi localization, and suggests that the Dbs-130 regulates aspects of the secretory pathway that are required to support cell polarization during directed migration. PMID:25483302

  14. Dendrites In Vitro and In Vivo Contain Microtubules of Opposite Polarity and Axon Formation Correlates with Uniform Plus-End-Out Microtubule Orientation

    PubMed Central

    Yau, Kah Wai; Schätzle, Philipp; Tortosa, Elena; Pagès, Stéphane; Holtmaat, Anthony

    2016-01-01

    In cultured vertebrate neurons, axons have a uniform arrangement of microtubules with plus-ends distal to the cell body (plus-end-out), whereas dendrites contain mixed polarity orientations with both plus-end-out and minus-end-out oriented microtubules. Rather than non-uniform microtubules, uniparallel minus-end-out microtubules are the signature of dendrites in Drosophila and Caenorhabditis elegans neurons. To determine whether mixed microtubule organization is a conserved feature of vertebrate dendrites, we used live-cell imaging to systematically analyze microtubule plus-end orientations in primary cultures of rat hippocampal and cortical neurons, dentate granule cells in mouse organotypic slices, and layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons in the somatosensory cortex of living mice. In vitro and in vivo, all microtubules had a plus-end-out orientation in axons, whereas microtubules in dendrites had mixed orientations. When dendritic microtubules were severed by laser-based microsurgery, we detected equal numbers of plus- and minus-end-out microtubule orientations throughout the dendritic processes. In dendrites, the minus-end-out microtubules were generally more stable and comparable with plus-end-out microtubules in axons. Interestingly, at early stages of neuronal development in nonpolarized cells, newly formed neurites already contained microtubules of opposite polarity, suggesting that the establishment of uniform plus-end-out microtubules occurs during axon formation. We propose a model in which the selective formation of uniform plus-end-out microtubules in the axon is a critical process underlying neuronal polarization. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Live-cell imaging was used to systematically analyze microtubule organization in primary cultures of rat hippocampal neurons, dentate granule cells in mouse organotypic slices, and layer 2/3 pyramidal neuron in somatosensory cortex of living mice. In vitro and in vivo, all microtubules have a plus-end-out orientation in axons

  15. Dynamical Length-Regulation of Microtubules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Melbinger, Anna; Reese, Louis; Frey, Erwin

    2012-02-01

    Microtubules (MTs) are vital constituents of the cytoskeleton. These stiff filaments are not only needed for mechanical support. They also fulfill highly dynamic tasks. For instance MTs build the mitotic spindle, which pulls the doubled set of chromosomes apart during mitosis. Hence, a well-regulated and adjustable MT length is essential for cell division. Extending a recently introduced model [1], we here study length-regulation of MTs. Thereby we account for both spontaneous polymerization and depolymerization triggered by motor proteins. In contrast to the polymerization rate, the effective depolymerization rate depends on the presence of molecular motors at the tip and thereby on crowding effects which in turn depend on the MT length. We show that these antagonistic effects result in a well-defined MT length. Stochastic simulations and analytic calculations reveal the exact regimes where regulation is feasible. Furthermore, the adjusted MT length and the ensuing strength of fluctuations are analyzed. Taken together, we make quantitative predictions which can be tested experimentally. These results should help to obtain deeper insights in the microscopic mechanisms underlying length-regulation. [4pt] [1] L.Reese, A.Melbinger, E.Frey, Biophys. J., 101, 9, 2190 (2011)

  16. MAP65/Ase1 promote microtubule flexibility

    PubMed Central

    Portran, D.; Zoccoler, M.; Gaillard, J.; Stoppin-Mellet, V.; Neumann, E.; Arnal, I.; Martiel, J. L.; Vantard, M.

    2013-01-01

    Microtubules (MTs) are dynamic cytoskeletal elements involved in numerous cellular processes. Although they are highly rigid polymers with a persistence length of 1–8 mm, they may exhibit a curved shape at a scale of few micrometers within cells, depending on their biological functions. However, how MT flexural rigidity in cells is regulated remains poorly understood. Here we ask whether MT-associated proteins (MAPs) could locally control the mechanical properties of MTs. We show that two major cross-linkers of the conserved MAP65/PRC1/Ase1 family drastically decrease MT rigidity. Their MT-binding domain mediates this effect. Remarkably, the softening effect of MAP65 observed on single MTs is maintained when MTs are cross-linked. By reconstituting physical collisions between growing MTs/MT bundles, we further show that the decrease in MT stiffness induced by MAP65 proteins is responsible for the sharp bending deformations observed in cells when they coalign at a steep angle to create bundles. Taken together, these data provide new insights into how MAP65, by modifying MT mechanical properties, may regulate the formation of complex MT arrays. PMID:23615441

  17. Microtubules, polarity and vertebrate neural tube morphogenesis.

    PubMed

    Cearns, Michael D; Escuin, Sarah; Alexandre, Paula; Greene, Nicholas D E; Copp, Andrew J

    2016-07-01

    Microtubules (MTs) are key cellular components, long known to participate in morphogenetic events that shape the developing embryo. However, the links between the cellular functions of MTs, their effects on cell shape and polarity, and their role in large-scale morphogenesis remain poorly understood. Here, these relationships were examined with respect to two strategies for generating the vertebrate neural tube: bending and closure of the mammalian neural plate; and cavitation of the teleost neural rod. The latter process has been compared with 'secondary' neurulation that generates the caudal spinal cord in mammals. MTs align along the apico-basal axis of the mammalian neuroepithelium early in neural tube closure, participating functionally in interkinetic nuclear migration, which indirectly impacts on cell shape. Whether MTs play other functional roles in mammalian neurulation remains unclear. In the zebrafish, MTs are important for defining the neural rod midline prior to its cavitation, both by localizing apical proteins at the tissue midline and by orienting cell division through a mirror-symmetric MT apparatus that helps to further define the medial localization of apical polarity proteins. Par proteins have been implicated in centrosome positioning in neuroepithelia as well as in the control of polarized morphogenetic movements in the neural rod. Understanding of MT functions during early nervous system development has so far been limited, partly by techniques that fail to distinguish 'cause' from 'effect'. Future developments will likely rely on novel ways to selectively impair MT function in order to investigate the roles they play.

  18. Semiautomated Motility Assay For Determining Toxicity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Noever, David A.; Cronise, Raymond

    1996-01-01

    Improved method of assessing toxicities of various substances based on observation of effects of those substances on motilities of manageably small number of cells of protozoan species Tetrahema pyriformis. Provides repeatable, standardized tests with minimal handling by technicians and with minimal exposure of technicians to chemicals. Rapid and economical alternative to Draize test.

  19. Methods for fabricating microarrays of motile bacteria.

    PubMed

    Rozhok, Sergey; Shen, Clifton K-F; Littler, Pey-Lih H; Fan, Zhifang; Liu, Chang; Mirkin, Chad A; Holz, Richard C

    2005-04-01

    Motile bacterial cell microarrays were fabricated by attaching Escherichia coli K-12 cells onto predesigned 16-mercaptohexadecanoic acid patterned microarrays, which were covalently functionalized with E. coli antibodies or poly-L-lysine. By utilizing 11-mercaptoundecyl-penta(ethylene glycol) or 11-mercapto-1-undecanol as passivating molecules, nonspecific binding of E. coli was significantly reduced. Microcontact printing and dip-pen nanolithography were used to prepare microarrays for bacterial adhesion, which was studied by optical fluorescence and atomic force microscopy. These data indicate that single motile E. coli can be attached to predesigned line or dot features and binding can occur via the cell body or the flagella of bacteria. Adherent bacteria are viable (remain alive and motile after adhesion to patterned surface features) for more than four hours. Individual motile bacterial cells can be placed onto predesigned surface features that are at least 1.3 microm in diameter or larger. The importance of controlling the adhesion of single bacterial cell to a surface is discussed with regard to biomotor design.

  20. Esophageal motility disorders after gastric banding.

    PubMed

    O'Rourke, R W; Deveney, C W; McConnell, D B; Wolfe, B M; Jobe, B A

    2007-01-01

    The long-term effects of gastric banding on esophageal function are not well described. This report describes a 28-year-old woman who developed signs and symptoms of abnormal esophageal motility and lower esophageal sphincter hypotension after gastric banding for morbid obesity. The current literature addressing the effects of gastric banding on esophageal function in light of this case report is discussed.

  1. Esophageal motility abnormalities in gastroesophageal reflux disease.

    PubMed

    Martinucci, Irene; de Bortoli, Nicola; Giacchino, Maria; Bodini, Giorgia; Marabotto, Elisa; Marchi, Santino; Savarino, Vincenzo; Savarino, Edoardo

    2014-05-06

    Esophageal motility abnormalities are among the main factors implicated in the pathogenesis of gastroesophageal reflux disease. The recent introduction in clinical and research practice of novel esophageal testing has markedly improved our understanding of the mechanisms contributing to the development of gastroesophageal reflux disease, allowing a better management of patients with this disorder. In this context, the present article intends to provide an overview of the current literature about esophageal motility dysfunctions in patients with gastroesophageal reflux disease. Esophageal manometry, by recording intraluminal pressure, represents the gold standard to diagnose esophageal motility abnormalities. In particular, using novel techniques, such as high resolution manometry with or without concurrent intraluminal impedance monitoring, transient lower esophageal sphincter (LES) relaxations, hypotensive LES, ineffective esophageal peristalsis and bolus transit abnormalities have been better defined and strongly implicated in gastroesophageal reflux disease development. Overall, recent findings suggest that esophageal motility abnormalities are increasingly prevalent with increasing severity of reflux disease, from non-erosive reflux disease to erosive reflux disease and Barrett's esophagus. Characterizing esophageal dysmotility among different subgroups of patients with reflux disease may represent a fundamental approach to properly diagnose these patients and, thus, to set up the best therapeutic management. Currently, surgery represents the only reliable way to restore the esophagogastric junction integrity and to reduce transient LES relaxations that are considered to be the predominant mechanism by which gastric contents can enter the esophagus. On that ground, more in depth future studies assessing the pathogenetic role of dysmotility in patients with reflux disease are warranted.

  2. [Increased spontaneous uterine motility with serotonin].

    PubMed

    Lechner, W; Sölder, E; Sölder, B; Kölle, D; Huter, O

    1992-01-01

    The influence of serotonine, a vasoactive neurotransmitter, on the spontaneous motility of uterine strips was investigated. A highly significant (p less than 0.001) increase of uterine activity was observed when serotonine 10(-6) M was added to the perfusing medium.

  3. The dual specificity phosphatase Cdc14B bundles and stabilizes microtubules

    SciTech Connect

    Plumley, Hyekyung; Liu, Yie; Gomez, Marla V; Wang, Yisong

    2005-01-01

    The Cdc14 dual-specificity phosphatases regulate key events in the eukaryotic cell cycle. However, little is known about the function of mammalian CDC14B family members. Here, we demonstrate that subcellular localization of CDC14B protein is cell cycle regulated. CDC14B can bind, bundle, and stabilize microtubules in vitro independently of its catalytic activity. Basic amino acid residues within the nucleolar targeting domain are important for both retaining CDC14B in the nucleolus and preventing microtubule bundling. Overexpression of CDC14B resulted in the formation of cytoplasmic CDC14B and microtubule bundles in interphase cells. These microtubule bundles were resistant to microtubule depolymerization reagents and enriched in acetylated -tubulin. Expression of cytoplasmic forms of CDC14B impaired microtubule nucleation from the microtubule organization center. CDC14B is thus a novel microtubule-bundling and -stabilizing protein, whose regulated subcellular localization may help modulate spindle and microtubule dynamics in mitosis.

  4. Wave propagation in protein microtubules modeled as orthotropic elastic shells including transverse shear deformations.

    PubMed

    Daneshmand, Farhang; Ghavanloo, Esmaeal; Amabili, Marco

    2011-07-07

    Wave propagation along the microtubules is one of the issues of major concern in various microtubule cellular functions. In this study, the general wave propagation behavior in protein microtubules is investigated based on a first-order shear deformation shell theory for orthotropic materials, with particular emphasis on the role of strongly anisotropic elastic properties of microtubules. According to experimental observation, the first-order shear deformation theory is used for the modeling of microtubule walls. A general displacement representation is introduced and a type of coupled polynomial eigenvalue problem is developed. Numerical examples describe the effects of shear deformation and rotary inertia on wave velocities in orthotropic microtubules. Finally, the influences of the microtubule shear modulus, axial external force, effective thickness and material temperature dependency on wave velocities along the microtubule protofilaments, helical pathway and radial directions are elucidated. Most results presented in the present investigation have been absent from the literature for the wave propagation in microtubules.

  5. Kinesin-1 heavy chain mediates microtubule sliding to drive changes in cell shape.

    PubMed

    Jolly, Amber L; Kim, Hwajin; Srinivasan, Divya; Lakonishok, Margot; Larson, Adam G; Gelfand, Vladimir I

    2010-07-06

    Microtubules are typically observed to buckle and loop during interphase in cultured cells by an unknown mechanism. We show that lateral microtubule movement and looping is a result of microtubules sliding against one another in interphase Drosophila S2 cells. RNAi of the kinesin-1 heavy chain (KHC), but not dynein or the kinesin-1 light chain, eliminates these movements. KHC-dependent microtubule sliding powers the formation of cellular processes filled with parallel microtubule bundles. The growth of these cellular processes is independent of the actin cytoskeleton. We further observe cytoplasmic microtubule sliding in Xenopus and Ptk2 cells, and show that antibody inhibition of KHC in mammalian cells prevents sliding. We therefore propose that, in addition to its well established role in organelle transport, an important universal function of kinesin-1 is to mediate cytoplasmic microtubule-microtubule sliding. This provides the cell with a dedicated mechanism to transport long and short microtubule filaments and drive changes in cell shape.

  6. On the significance of microtubule flexural behavior in cytoskeletal mechanics.

    PubMed

    Mehrbod, Mehrdad; Mofrad, Mohammad R K

    2011-01-01

    Quantitative description of cell mechanics has challenged biological scientists for the past two decades. Various structural models have been attempted to analyze the structure of the cytoskeleton. One important aspect that has been largely ignored in all these modeling approaches is related to the flexural and buckling behavior of microtubular filaments. The objective of this paper is to explore the influence of this flexural and buckling behavior in cytoskeletal mechanics.In vitro the microtubules are observed to buckle in the first mode, reminiscent of a free, simply-supported beam. In vivo images of microtubules, however, indicate that the buckling mostly occurs in higher modes. This buckling mode switch takes place mostly because of the lateral support of microtubules via their connections to actin and intermediate filaments. These lateral loads are exerted throughout the microtubule length and yield a considerable bending behavior that, unless properly accounted for, would produce erroneous results in the modeling and analysis of the cytoskeletal mechanics.One of the promising attempts towards mechanical modeling of the cytoskeleton is the tensegrity model, which simplifies the complex network of cytoskeletal filaments into a combination merely of tension-bearing actin filaments and compression-bearing microtubules. Interestingly, this discrete model can qualitatively explain many experimental observations in cell mechanics. However, evidence suggests that the simplicity of this model may undermine the accuracy of its predictions, given the model's underlying assumption that "every single member bears solely either tensile or compressive behavior," i.e. neglecting the flexural behavior of the microtubule filaments. We invoke an anisotropic continuum model for microtubules and compare the bending energy stored in a single microtubule with its axial strain energy at the verge of buckling. Our results suggest that the bending energy can exceed the axial energy

  7. Phosphorylation of α-Tubulin by Protein Kinase C Stimulates Microtubule Dynamics in Human Breast Cells

    PubMed Central

    De, Shatarupa; Tsimounis, Areti; Chen, Xiangyu; Rotenberg, Susan A.

    2014-01-01

    Protein kinase C (PKC) engenders motility through phosphorylation of α-tubulin at Ser-165 in non-transformed MCF-10A cells. Live cell imaging explored the impact of PKC-mediated phosphorylation on microtubule (MT) dynamics. MTs fluorescently labeled with GFP-α-tubulin were treated with diacylglycerol (DAG)-lactone (a membrane-permeable PKC activator), or co-transfected with a pseudo-phosphorylated S165D-α6-tubulin mutant. Each condition increased the dynamicity of MTs by stimulating the rate and duration of the growth phase and decreasing the frequency of catastrophe. In MDA-MB-231 metastatic breast cells where the intrinsic PKC activity is high, these MT growth parameters were also high but could be suppressed by expression of phosphorylation-resistant S165N-α6-tubulin or by treatment with a pan-PKC inhibitor (bis-indoleylmaleimide). Sub-cellular fractionation and immunofluorescence of MCF-10A cells showed that phosphorylation (via DAG-lactone) or pseudo-phosphorylation of α6-tubulin increased its partitioning into MTs as compared to controls, and produced longer, more stable MTs. Following expression of the plus-end binding protein GFP-EB1, DAG-lactone accelerated the formation and increased the number of nascent MTs. Expression of S165D-α6-tubulin promoted Rac1 activation and Rac1-dependent cell motility. These findings call attention to PKC-mediated phosphorylation of α-tubulin as a novel mechanism for controlling the dynamics of MTs that result in cell movement. PMID:24574051

  8. Association between microtubules and Golgi vesicles isolated from rat parotid glands.

    PubMed

    Coffe, G; Raymond, M N

    1990-01-01

    We report an isolation procedure of trans-Golgi vesicles (GVs) from rat parotid glands. Various organelle markers were used, particularly galactosyl transferase as a trans-Golgi marker, to test the purity of the GV fraction. A quantitative in vitro binding assay between microtubules and GVs is described. The vesicles were incubated with taxol-induced microtubules, layered between 50% and 43% sucrose cushions and subjected to centrifugation. Unlike free microtubules which were sedimented, the GV-bound microtubules co-migrated upward with GVs. Quantification of these bound microtubules was carried out by densitometric scanning of Coomassie blue-stained gels. The association between microtubules and GVs followed a saturation curve, with a plateau value of 20 micrograms of microtubule protein bound to 500 micrograms of GV fraction. The half-saturation of the GV sites was obtained with a microtubule concentration of 20 micrograms/ml. Electron microscopy of negatively stained re-floated material showed numerous microtubule-vesicle complexes. Coating of microtubules with an excess of brain microtubule-associated proteins (MAPs) abolished binding. In the absence of exogenous microtubules, we showed that the GV fraction was already interacting with a class of endogenous rat parotid microtubules. This class of colcemid and cold-stable microtubules represents 10-20% of the total tubulin content of the parotid cell.

  9. Lessons from in vitro reconstitution analyses of plant microtubule-associated proteins

    PubMed Central

    Hamada, Takahiro

    2014-01-01

    Plant microtubules, composed of tubulin GTPase, are irreplaceable cellular components that regulate the directions of cell expansion and cell division, chromosome segregation and cell plate formation. To accomplish these functions, plant cells organize microtubule structures by regulating microtubule dynamics. Each microtubule localizes to the proper position with repeated growth and shortening. Although it is possible to reconstitute microtubule dynamics with pure tubulin solution in vitro, many microtubule-associated proteins (MAPs) govern microtubule dynamics in cells. In plants, major MAPs are identified as microtubule stabilizers (CLASP and MAP65 etc.), microtubule destabilizers (kinesin-13, katanin, MAP18 and MDP25), and microtubule dynamics promoters (EB1, MAP215, MOR1, MAP200, SPR2). Mutant analyses with forward and reverse genetics have shown the importance of microtubules and individual MAPs in plants. However, it is difficult to understand how each MAP regulates microtubule dynamics, such as growth and shortening, through mutant analyses. In vitro reconstitution analyses with individual purified MAPs and tubulin are powerful tools to reveal how each MAP regulates microtubule dynamics at the molecular level. In this review, I summarize the results of in vitro reconstitution analyses and introduce current models of how each MAP regulates microtubule dynamic instability. PMID:25202315

  10. Lessons from in vitro reconstitution analyses of plant microtubule-associated proteins.

    PubMed

    Hamada, Takahiro

    2014-01-01

    Plant microtubules, composed of tubulin GTPase, are irreplaceable cellular components that regulate the directions of cell expansion and cell division, chromosome segregation and cell plate formation. To accomplish these functions, plant cells organize microtubule structures by regulating microtubule dynamics. Each microtubule localizes to the proper position with repeated growth and shortening. Although it is possible to reconstitute microtubule dynamics with pure tubulin solution in vitro, many microtubule-associated proteins (MAPs) govern microtubule dynamics in cells. In plants, major MAPs are identified as microtubule stabilizers (CLASP and MAP65 etc.), microtubule destabilizers (kinesin-13, katanin, MAP18 and MDP25), and microtubule dynamics promoters (EB1, MAP215, MOR1, MAP200, SPR2). Mutant analyses with forward and reverse genetics have shown the importance of microtubules and individual MAPs in plants. However, it is difficult to understand how each MAP regulates microtubule dynamics, such as growth and shortening, through mutant analyses. In vitro reconstitution analyses with individual purified MAPs and tubulin are powerful tools to reveal how each MAP regulates microtubule dynamics at the molecular level. In this review, I summarize the results of in vitro reconstitution analyses and introduce current models of how each MAP regulates microtubule dynamic instability.

  11. An EB1-kinesin complex is sufficient to steer microtubule growth in vitro

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yalei; Rolls, Melissa M.; Hancock, William O.

    2013-01-01

    Summary Proper microtubule polarity underlies overall neuronal polarity, but mechanisms for maintaining microtubule polarity are not well understood. Previous live imaging in Drosophila dendritic arborization (da) neurons showed that, while microtubules are uniformly plus-end out in axons, dendrites possess uniformly minus-end-out microtubules [1]. Thus, maintaining uniform microtubule polarity in dendrites requires that growing microtubule plus-ends entering branch points must be actively directed towards the cell body. A model was proposed in which EB1 tracks the plus-ends of microtubules growing into a branches and an associated kinesin-2 motor walks along a static microtubule to steer the plus-end toward the cell body. However, the fast plus-end binding dynamics of EB1 [2–5] appear at odds with this proposed mechanical function. To test this model in vitro, we reconstituted the system by artificially dimerizing EB1 to kinesin, growing microtubules from immobilized seeds, and imaging encounters between growing microtubule plus-ends and static microtubules. Consistent with in vivo observations, the EB1-kinesin complex actively steered growing microtubules. Thus EB1 kinetics and mechanics are sufficient to bend microtubules for several seconds. Other kinesins also demonstrated this activity, suggesting this is a general mechanism for organizing and maintaining proper microtubule polarity in cells. PMID:24462004

  12. Microtubules are essential for guard-cell function in Vicia and Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Eisinger, William; Ehrhardt, David; Briggs, Winslow

    2012-05-01

    Radially arranged cortical microtubules are a prominent feature of guard cells. Guard cells expressing GFP-tubulin showed consistent changes in the appearance of microtubules when stomata opened or closed. Guard cells showed fewer microtubule structures as stomata closed, whether induced by transfer to darkness, ABA, hydrogen peroxide, or sodium hydrogen carbonate. Guard cells kept in the dark (closed stomata) showed increases in microtubule structures and stomatal aperture on light treatment. GFP-EB1, marking microtubule growing plus ends, showed no change in number of plus ends or velocity of assembly on stomatal closure. Since the number of growing plus ends and the rate of plus-end growth did not change when microtubule structure numbers declined, microtubule instability and/or rearrangement must be responsible for the apparent loss of microtubules. Guard cells with closed stomata showed more cytosolic GFP-fluorescence than those with open stomata as cortical microtubules became disassembled, although with a large net loss in total fluorescence. Microtubule-targeted drugs blocked guard-cell function in Vicia and Arabidopsis. Oryzalin disrupted guard-cell microtubules and prevented stomatal opening and taxol stabilized guard-cell microtubules and delayed stomatal closure. Gas exchange measurements indicated that the transgenes for fluorescent-labeled proteins did not disrupt normal stomatal function. These dynamic changes in guard-cell microtubules combined with our inhibitor studies provide evidence for an active role of microtubules in guard-cell function.

  13. An animated model of reticulorumen motility.

    PubMed

    Gookin, Jody L; Foster, Derek M; Harvey, Alice M; McWhorter, Dan

    2009-01-01

    Understanding reticulorumen motility is important to the assessment of ruminant health and optimal production, and in the recognition, diagnosis, and treatment of disease. Accordingly, the teaching of reticulorumen motility is a staple of all veterinary curricula. This teaching has historically been based on written descriptions, line drawings, or pressure tracings obtained during contraction sequences. We developed an animated model of reticulorumen motility and hypothesized that veterinary students would prefer use of the model over traditional instructional methods. First-year veterinary students were randomly allocated to one of two online learning exercises: with the animated model (Group A) or with text and line drawings (Group B) depicting reticulorumen motility. Learning was assessed with a multiple-choice quiz and feedback on the learning alternatives was obtained by survey. Seventy-four students participated in the study, including 38/42 in Group A and 36/36 in Group B. Sixty-four out of 72 students (89%) responded that they would prefer use of the animated model if only one of the two learning methods was available. A majority of students agreed or strongly agreed that the animated model was easy to understand and improved their knowledge and appreciation of the importance of reticulorumen motility, and would recommend the model to other veterinary students. Interestingly, students in Group B achieved higher scores on examination than students in Group A. This could be speculatively attributed to the inclusion of an itemized list of contraction sequences in the text provided to Group B and failure of Group A students to read the text associated with the animations.

  14. Organization of microtubule assemblies in Dictyostelium syncytia depends on the microtubule crosslinker, Ase1.

    PubMed

    Tikhonenko, Irina; Irizarry, Karen; Khodjakov, Alexey; Koonce, Michael P

    2016-02-01

    It has long been known that the interphase microtubule (MT) array is a key cellular scaffold that provides structural support and directs organelle trafficking in eukaryotic cells. Although in animal cells, a combination of centrosome nucleating properties and polymer dynamics at the distal microtubule ends is generally sufficient to establish a radial, polar array of MTs, little is known about how effector proteins (motors and crosslinkers) are coordinated to produce the diversity of interphase MT array morphologies found in nature. This diversity is particularly important in multinucleated environments where multiple MT arrays must coexist and function. We initiate here a study to address the higher ordered coordination of multiple, independent MT arrays in a common cytoplasm. Deletion of a MT crosslinker of the MAP65/Ase1/PRC1 family disrupts the spatial integrity of multiple arrays in Dictyostelium discoideum, reducing the distance between centrosomes and increasing the intermingling of MTs with opposite polarity. This result, coupled with previous dynein disruptions suggest a robust mechanism by which interphase MT arrays can utilize motors and crosslinkers to sense their position and minimize overlap in a common cytoplasm.

  15. Organization of microtubule assemblies in Dictyostelium syncytia depends on the microtubule crosslinker, Ase1

    PubMed Central

    Tikhonenko, Irina; Irizarry, Karen; Khodjakov, Alexey; Koonce, Michael P.

    2015-01-01

    It has long been known that the interphase microtubule (MT) array is a key cellular scaffold that provides structural support and directs organelle trafficking in eukaryotic cells. Although in animal cells, a combination of centrosome nucleating properties and polymer dynamics at the distal microtubule ends is generally sufficient to establish a radial, polar array of MTs, little is known about how effector proteins (motors and crosslinkers) are coordinated to produce the diversity of interphase MT array morphologies found in nature. This diversity is particularly important in multinucleated environments where multiple MT arrays must coexist and function. We initiate here a study to address the higher ordered coordination of multiple, independent MT arrays in a common cytoplasm. Deletion of a MT crosslinker of the MAP65/Ase1/PRC1 family disrupts the spatial integrity of multiple arrays in Dictyostelium discoideum, reducing the distance between centrosomes and increasing the intermingling of MTs with opposite polarity. This result, coupled with previous dynein disruptions suggest a robust mechanism by which interphase MT arrays can utilize motors and crosslinkers to sense their position and minimize overlap in a common cytoplasm. PMID:26298292

  16. Interaction of chicken gizzard smooth muscle calponin with brain microtubules.

    PubMed

    Fujii, T; Hiromori, T; Hamamoto, M; Suzuki, T

    1997-08-01

    Calponin, a major actin-, tropomyosin-, and calmodulin-binding protein in smooth muscle, interacted with tubulin, a main constituent of microtubules, in a concentration-dependent fashion in vitro. The apparent K(d) value of calponin to tubulin was calculated to be 5.2 microM with 2 mol of calponin maximally bound per 1 mol of tubulin. At low ionic strength, tubulin bound to calponin immobilized on Sepharose 4B, and the bound protein was released at about 270 mM NaCl. Chemical cross-linking experiments showed that a 1:1 molar covalent complex of calponin and tubulin was produced. The amount of calponin bound to microtubules decreased with increasing ionic strength or Ca2+ concentration. The addition of calmodulin or S100 to the mixture of calponin and microtubule proteins caused the removal of calponin from microtubules in the presence of Ca2+, but not in the presence of EGTA. Calponin-related proteins including tropomyosin, SM22, and caldesmon had little effect on the calponin binding to microtubules, whereas MAP2 inhibited the binding. Interestingly, there was little, if any, effect of mycalolide B-treated actin on the binding of calponin to microtubules. Furthermore, only about 20% of calponin-F-actin interaction was inhibited in the presence of an excess amount of tubulin (4 mol per mol of calponin), indicating that tubulin binds to calponin at a different site from that of actin. Compared with MAP2, calponin had little effect on microtubule polymerization.

  17. Role of microtubules in the contractile dysfunction of hypertrophied myocardium

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zile, M. R.; Koide, M.; Sato, H.; Ishiguro, Y.; Conrad, C. H.; Buckley, J. M.; Morgan, J. P.; Cooper, G. 4th

    1999-01-01

    OBJECTIVES: We sought to determine whether the ameliorative effects of microtubule depolymerization on cellular contractile dysfunction in pressure overload cardiac hypertrophy apply at the tissue level. BACKGROUND: A selective and persistent increase in microtubule density causes decreased contractile function of cardiocytes from cats with hypertrophy produced by chronic right ventricular (RV) pressure overloading. Microtubule depolymerization by colchicine normalizes contractility in these isolated cardiocytes. However, whether these changes in cellular function might contribute to changes in function at the more highly integrated and complex cardiac tissue level was unknown. METHODS: Accordingly, RV papillary muscles were isolated from 25 cats with RV pressure overload hypertrophy induced by pulmonary artery banding (PAB) for 4 weeks and 25 control cats. Contractile state was measured using physiologically sequenced contractions before and 90 min after treatment with 10(-5) mol/liter colchicine. RESULTS: The PAB significantly increased RV systolic pressure and the RV weight/body weight ratio in PAB; it significantly decreased developed tension from 59+/-3 mN/mm2 in control to 25+/-4 mN/mm2 in PAB, shortening extent from 0.21+/-0.01 muscle lengths (ML) in control to 0.12+/-0.01 ML in PAB, and shortening rate from 1.12+/-0.07 ML/s in control to 0.55+/-0.03 ML/s in PAB. Indirect immunofluorescence confocal microscopy showed that PAB muscles had a selective increase in microtubule density and that colchicine caused complete microtubule depolymerization in both control and PAB papillary muscles. Microtubule depolymerization normalized myocardial contractility in papillary muscles of PAB cats but did not alter contractility in control muscles. CONCLUSIONS: Excess microtubule density, therefore, is equally important to both cellular and to myocardial contractile dysfunction caused by chronic, severe pressure-overload cardiac hypertrophy.

  18. Automated stitching of microtubule centerlines across serial electron tomograms.

    PubMed

    Weber, Britta; Tranfield, Erin M; Höög, Johanna L; Baum, Daniel; Antony, Claude; Hyman, Tony; Verbavatz, Jean-Marc; Prohaska, Steffen

    2014-01-01

    Tracing microtubule centerlines in serial section electron tomography requires microtubules to be stitched across sections, that is lines from different sections need to be aligned, endpoints need to be matched at section boundaries to establish a correspondence between neighboring sections, and corresponding lines need to be connected across multiple sections. We present computational methods for these tasks: 1) An initial alignment is computed using a distance compatibility graph. 2) A fine alignment is then computed with a probabilistic variant of the iterative closest points algorithm, which we extended to handle the orientation of lines by introducing a periodic random variable to the probabilistic formulation. 3) Endpoint correspondence is established by formulating a matching problem in terms of a Markov random field and computing the best matching with belief propagation. Belief propagation is not generally guaranteed to converge to a minimum. We show how convergence can be achieved, nonetheless, with minimal manual input. In addition to stitching microtubule centerlines, the correspondence is also applied to transform and merge the electron tomograms. We applied the proposed methods to samples from the mitotic spindle in C. elegans, the meiotic spindle in X. laevis, and sub-pellicular microtubule arrays in T. brucei. The methods were able to stitch microtubules across section boundaries in good agreement with experts' opinions for the spindle samples. Results, however, were not satisfactory for the microtubule arrays. For certain experiments, such as an analysis of the spindle, the proposed methods can replace manual expert tracing and thus enable the analysis of microtubules over long distances with reasonable manual effort.

  19. Automated Stitching of Microtubule Centerlines across Serial Electron Tomograms

    PubMed Central

    Weber, Britta; Tranfield, Erin M.; Höög, Johanna L.; Baum, Daniel; Antony, Claude; Hyman, Tony; Verbavatz, Jean-Marc; Prohaska, Steffen

    2014-01-01

    Tracing microtubule centerlines in serial section electron tomography requires microtubules to be stitched across sections, that is lines from different sections need to be aligned, endpoints need to be matched at section boundaries to establish a correspondence between neighboring sections, and corresponding lines need to be connected across multiple sections. We present computational methods for these tasks: 1) An initial alignment is computed using a distance compatibility graph. 2) A fine alignment is then computed with a probabilistic variant of the iterative closest points algorithm, which we extended to handle the orientation of lines by introducing a periodic random variable to the probabilistic formulation. 3) Endpoint correspondence is established by formulating a matching problem in terms of a Markov random field and computing the best matching with belief propagation. Belief propagation is not generally guaranteed to converge to a minimum. We show how convergence can be achieved, nonetheless, with minimal manual input. In addition to stitching microtubule centerlines, the correspondence is also applied to transform and merge the electron tomograms. We applied the proposed methods to samples from the mitotic spindle in C. elegans, the meiotic spindle in X. laevis, and sub-pellicular microtubule arrays in T. brucei. The methods were able to stitch microtubules across section boundaries in good agreement with experts' opinions for the spindle samples. Results, however, were not satisfactory for the microtubule arrays. For certain experiments, such as an analysis of the spindle, the proposed methods can replace manual expert tracing and thus enable the analysis of microtubules over long distances with reasonable manual effort. PMID:25438148

  20. Oscillatory Fluid Flow Influences Primary Cilia and Microtubule Mechanics

    PubMed Central

    Espinha, Lina C.; Hoey, David A.; Fernandes, Paulo R.; Rodrigues, Hélder C.; Jacobs, Christopher R.

    2014-01-01

    Many tissues are sensitive to mechanical stimuli; however, the mechanotransduction mechanism used by cells remains unknown in many cases. The primary cilium is a solitary, immotile microtubule-based extension present on nearly every mammalian cell which extends from the basal body. The cilium is a mechanosensitive organelle and has been shown to transduce fluid flow-induced shear stress in tissues such as the kidney and bone. The majority of microtubules assemble from the mother centriole (basal body), contributing significantly to the anchoring of the primary cilium. Several studies have attempted to quantify the number of microtubules emanating from the basal body and the results vary depending on the cell type. It has also been shown that cellular response to shear stress depends on microtubular integrity. This study hypothesizes that changing the microtubule attachment of primary cilia in response to a mechanical stimulus could change primary cilia mechanics and, possibly, mechanosensitivity. Oscillatory fluid flow was applied to two different cell types and the microtubule attachment to the ciliary base was quantified. For the first time, an increase in microtubules around primary cilia both with time and shear rate in response to oscillatory fluid flow stimulation was demonstrated. Moreover, it is presented that the primary cilium is required for this loading-induced cellular response. This study has demonstrated a new role for the cilium in regulating alterations in the cytoplasmic microtubule network in response to mechanical stimulation, and therefore provides a new insight into how cilia may regulate its mechanics and thus the cells mechanosensitivity. PMID:25044764

  1. Characterization of the role of calcium in regulating the microtubule-destabilizing activity of MDP25

    PubMed Central

    Qin, Tao; Li, Jiejie; Yuan, Ming; Mao, Tonglin

    2012-01-01

    Regulation of cell elongation is important for plant morphogenesis. Many studies have shown that cortical microtubules play crucial roles during cell elongation and that microtubule stability, organization, and dynamics are regulated by microtubule regulatory proteins.1 Recently, we reported that a novel protein from Arabidopsis, termed microtubule-destabilizing protein 25 (MDP25), functions as a negative regulator of hypocotyl cell elongation. MDP25 destabilizes microtubules and exerts its effect on microtubules as a result of transient elevation of cytosolic calcium levels.2 PMID:22751329

  2. Cell prestress. II. Contribution of microtubules

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stamenovic, Dimitrije; Mijailovich, Srboljub M.; Tolic-Norrelykke, Iva Marija; Chen, Jianxin; Wang, Ning; Ingber, D. E. (Principal Investigator)

    2002-01-01

    The tensegrity model hypothesizes that cytoskeleton-based microtubules (MTs) carry compression as they balance a portion of cell contractile stress. To test this hypothesis, we used traction force microscopy to measure traction at the interface of adhering human airway smooth muscle cells and a flexible polyacrylamide gel substrate. The prediction is that if MTs balance a portion of contractile stress, then, upon their disruption, the portion of stress balanced by MTs would shift to the substrate, thereby causing an increase in traction. Measurements were done first in maximally activated cells (10 microM histamine) and then again after MTs had been disrupted (1 microM colchicine). We found that after disruption of MTs, traction increased on average by approximately 13%. Because in activated cells colchicine induced neither an increase in intracellular Ca(2+) nor an increase in myosin light chain phosphorylation as shown previously, we concluded that the observed increase in traction was a result of load shift from MTs to the substrate. In addition, energy stored in the flexible substrate was calculated as work done by traction on the deformation of the substrate. This result was then utilized in an energetic analysis. We assumed that cytoskeleton-based MTs are slender elastic rods supported laterally by intermediate filaments and that MTs buckle as the cell contracts. Using the post-buckling equilibrium theory of Euler struts, we found that energy stored during buckling of MTs was quantitatively consistent with the measured increase in substrate energy after disruption of MTs. This is further evidence supporting the idea that MTs are intracellular compression-bearing elements.

  3. Biomolecular motor modulates mechanical property of microtubule.

    PubMed

    Kabir, Arif Md Rashedul; Inoue, Daisuke; Hamano, Yoshimi; Mayama, Hiroyuki; Sada, Kazuki; Kakugo, Akira

    2014-05-12

    The microtubule (MT) is the stiffest cytoskeletal filamentous protein that takes part in a wide range of cellular activities where its mechanical property plays a crucially significant role. How a single biological entity plays multiple roles in cell has been a mystery for long time. Over the recent years, it has been known that modulation of the mechanical property of MT by different cellular agents is the key to performing manifold in vivo activities by MT. Studying the mechanical property of MT thus has been a prerequisite in understanding how MT plays such diversified in vivo roles. However, the anisotropic structure of MT has been an impediment in obtaining a precise description of the mechanical property of MT along its longitudinal and lateral directions that requires employment of distinct experimental approach and has not been demonstrated yet. In this work, we have developed an experimental system that enabled us to investigate the effect of tensile stress on MT. By using our newly developed system, (1) we have determined the Young's modulus of MT considering its deformation under applied tensile stress and (2) a new role of MT associated motor protein kinesin in modulating the mechanical property of MT was revealed for the first time. Decrease in Young's modulus of MT with the increase in interaction with kinesin suggests that kinesin has a softening effect on MT and thereby can modulate the rigidity of MT. This work will be an aid in understanding the modulation of mechanical property of MTs by MT associated proteins and might also help obtain a clear insight of the endurance and mechanical instability of MTs under applied stress.

  4. Microtubule guidance tested through controlled cell geometry

    PubMed Central

    Huda, Sabil; Soh, Siowling; Pilans, Didzis; Byrska-Bishop, Marta; Kim, Jiwon; Wilk, Gary; Borisy, Gary G.; Kandere-Grzybowska, Kristiana; Grzybowski, Bartosz A.

    2012-01-01

    Summary In moving cells dynamic microtubules (MTs) target and disassemble substrate adhesion sites (focal adhesions; FAs) in a process that enables the cell to detach from the substrate and propel itself forward. The short-range interactions between FAs and MT plus ends have been observed in several experimental systems, but the spatial overlap of these structures within the cell has precluded analysis of the putative long-range mechanisms by which MTs growing through the cell body reach FAs in the periphery of the cell. In the work described here cell geometry was controlled to remove the spatial overlap of cellular structures thus allowing for unambiguous observation of MT guidance. Specifically, micropatterning of living cells was combined with high-resolution in-cell imaging and gene product depletion by means of RNA interference to study the long-range MT guidance in quantitative detail. Cells were confined on adhesive triangular microislands that determined cell shape and ensured that FAs localized exclusively at the vertices of the triangular cells. It is shown that initial MT nucleation at the centrosome is random in direction, while the alignment of MT trajectories with the targets (i.e. FAs at vertices) increases with an increasing distance from the centrosome, indicating that MT growth is a non-random, guided process. The guided MT growth is dependent on the presence of FAs at the vertices. The depletion of either myosin IIA or myosin IIB results in depletion of F-actin bundles and spatially unguided MT growth. Taken together our findings provide quantitative evidence of a role for long-range MT guidance in MT targeting of FAs. PMID:22992457

  5. Buckling behavior of individual and bundled microtubules.

    PubMed

    Soheilypour, Mohammad; Peyro, Mohaddeseh; Peter, Stephen J; Mofrad, Mohammad R K

    2015-04-07

    As the major structural constituent of the cytoskeleton, microtubules (MTs) serve a variety of biological functions that range from facilitating organelle transport to maintaining the mechanical integrity of the cell. Neuronal MTs exhibit a distinct configuration, hexagonally packed bundles of MT filaments, interconnected by MT-associated protein (MAP) tau. Building on our previous work on mechanical response of axonal MT bundles under uniaxial tension, this study is focused on exploring the compression scenarios. Intracellular MTs carry a large fraction of the compressive loads sensed by the cell and therefore, like any other column-like structure, are prone to substantial bending and buckling. Various biological activities, e.g., actomyosin contractility and many pathological conditions are driven or followed by bending, looping, and buckling of MT filaments. The coarse-grained model previously developed in our lab has been used to study the mechanical behavior of individual and bundled in vivo MT filaments under uniaxial compression. Both configurations show tip-localized, decaying, and short-wavelength buckling. This behavior highlights the role of the surrounding cytoplasm and MAP tau on MT buckling behavior, which allows MT filaments to bear much larger compressive forces. It is observed that MAP tau interconnections improve this effect by a factor of two. The enhanced ability of MT bundles to damp buckling waves relative to individual MT filaments, may be interpreted as a self-defense mechanism because it helps axonal MTs to endure harsher environments while maintaining their function. The results indicate that MT filaments in a bundle do not buckle simultaneously implying that the applied stress is not equally shared among the MT filaments, that is a consequence of the nonuniform distribution of MAP tau proteins along the bundle length. Furthermore, from a pathological perspective, it is observed that axonal MT bundles are more vulnerable to failure in

  6. Buckling Behavior of Individual and Bundled Microtubules

    PubMed Central

    Soheilypour, Mohammad; Peyro, Mohaddeseh; Peter, Stephen J.; Mofrad, Mohammad R.K.

    2015-01-01

    As the major structural constituent of the cytoskeleton, microtubules (MTs) serve a variety of biological functions that range from facilitating organelle transport to maintaining the mechanical integrity of the cell. Neuronal MTs exhibit a distinct configuration, hexagonally packed bundles of MT filaments, interconnected by MT-associated protein (MAP) tau. Building on our previous work on mechanical response of axonal MT bundles under uniaxial tension, this study is focused on exploring the compression scenarios. Intracellular MTs carry a large fraction of the compressive loads sensed by the cell and therefore, like any other column-like structure, are prone to substantial bending and buckling. Various biological activities, e.g., actomyosin contractility and many pathological conditions are driven or followed by bending, looping, and buckling of MT filaments. The coarse-grained model previously developed in our lab has been used to study the mechanical behavior of individual and bundled in vivo MT filaments under uniaxial compression. Both configurations show tip-localized, decaying, and short-wavelength buckling. This behavior highlights the role of the surrounding cytoplasm and MAP tau on MT buckling behavior, which allows MT filaments to bear much larger compressive forces. It is observed that MAP tau interconnections improve this effect by a factor of two. The enhanced ability of MT bundles to damp buckling waves relative to individual MT filaments, may be interpreted as a self-defense mechanism because it helps axonal MTs to endure harsher environments while maintaining their function. The results indicate that MT filaments in a bundle do not buckle simultaneously implying that the applied stress is not equally shared among the MT filaments, that is a consequence of the nonuniform distribution of MAP tau proteins along the bundle length. Furthermore, from a pathological perspective, it is observed that axonal MT bundles are more vulnerable to failure in

  7. Esophageal motility disorders in HIV patients.

    PubMed

    Zalar, Alberto E; Olmos, Martín A; Piskorz, Eduardo L; Magnanini, Fernando L

    2003-05-01

    Opportunistic esophageal infections (Candida, cytomegalovirus, herpes simplex virus) and idiophatic esophageal ulcerations are commonly found in HIV patients. However, motility disorders of the esophagus have seldom been investigated in this population. The aim of this prospective study was to determine the presence of motility disorders in HIV patients with esophageal symptoms (with or without associated lesions detected by endoscopy) and in HIV patients without esophageal symptoms and normal esophagoscopy. Eigthteen consecutive HIV patients (10 male, 8 female, ages 20-44 years, mean age 33.5; 8 HIV positive and 10 AIDS) were studied prospectively. Nine patients complained of esophageal symptoms, e.g, dysphagia/odynophagia (group 1) and 9 had symptoms not related to esophageal disease, such as diarrhea, abdominal pain, or gastrointestinal bleeding (group 2). All patients underwent upper endoscopy; mucosal biopsies were taken when macroscopic esophageal lesions were identified or when the patients were symptomatic even if the esophageal mucosa was normal. Esophageal manometry was performed in the 18 patients, using a 4-channel water-perfused system according to a standardized technique. Sixteen of the 18 patients (88.8%) had baseline manometric abnormalities. In group 1, 8/9 patients had esophageal motility disorders: nutcrackeresophagus in 1, hypertensive lower esophageal sphincter (LES) with incomplete relaxation in 2, nonspecific esophageal motility disorders (NEMD) in 3, diffuse esophageal spasm in 1, esophageal hypocontraction with low LES pressure in 1. Six of these 9 patients had lesions detected by endoscopy: CMV ulcers in 2, idiopathic ulcers in 1, candidiasis in 1, idiopathic ulcer + candidiasis in 1, nonspecific esophagitis in 1; and 3/9 had normal endoscopy and normal esophageal biopsies. In group 2, 8/9 patients had abnormal motility: hypertensive LES with incomplete relaxation in 1, nutcracker esophagus in 2, esophageal hypocontraction in 3, and NEMD

  8. Kinesin-Binding Protein Controls Microtubule Dynamics and Cargo Trafficking by Regulating Kinesin Motor Activity.

    PubMed

    Kevenaar, Josta T; Bianchi, Sarah; van Spronsen, Myrrhe; Olieric, Natacha; Lipka, Joanna; Frias, Cátia P; Mikhaylova, Marina; Harterink, Martin; Keijzer, Nanda; Wulf, Phebe S; Hilbert, Manuel; Kapitein, Lukas C; de Graaff, Esther; Ahkmanova, Anna; Steinmetz, Michel O; Hoogenraad, Casper C

    2016-04-04

    Kinesin motor proteins play a fundamental role for normal neuronal development by controlling intracellular cargo transport and microtubule (MT) cytoskeleton organization. Regulating kinesin activity is important to ensure their proper functioning, and their misregulation often leads to severe human neurological disorders. Homozygous nonsense mutations in kinesin-binding protein (KBP)/KIAA1279 cause the neurological disorder Goldberg-Shprintzen syndrome (GOSHS), which is characterized by intellectual disability, microcephaly, and axonal neuropathy. Here, we show that KBP regulates kinesin activity by interacting with the motor domains of a specific subset of kinesins to prevent their association with the MT cytoskeleton. The KBP-interacting kinesins include cargo-transporting motors such as kinesin-3/KIF1A and MT-depolymerizing motor kinesin-8/KIF18A. We found that KBP blocks KIF1A/UNC-104-mediated synaptic vesicle transport in cultured hippocampal neurons and in C. elegans PVD sensory neurons. In contrast, depletion of KBP results in the accumulation of KIF1A motors and synaptic vesicles in the axonal growth cone. We also show that KBP regulates neuronal MT dynamics by controlling KIF18A activity. Our data suggest that KBP functions as a kinesin inhibitor that modulates MT-based cargo motility and depolymerizing activity of a subset of kinesin motors. We propose that misregulation of KBP-controlled kinesin motors may represent the underlying molecular mechanism that contributes to the neuropathological defects observed in GOSHS patients.

  9. Bug22 influences cilium morphology and the post-translational modification of ciliary microtubules

    PubMed Central

    Mendes Maia, Teresa; Gogendeau, Delphine; Pennetier, Carole; Janke, Carsten; Basto, Renata

    2014-01-01

    Summary Cilia and flagella are organelles essential for motility and sensing of environmental stimuli. Depending on the cell type, cilia acquire a defined set of functions and, accordingly, are built with an appropriate length and molecular composition. Several ciliary proteins display a high degree of conservation throughout evolution and mutations in ciliary genes are associated with various diseases such as ciliopathies and infertility. Here, we describe the role of the highly conserved ciliary protein, Bug22, in Drosophila. Previous studies in unicellular organisms have shown that Bug22 is required for proper cilia function, but its exact role in ciliogenesis has not been investigated yet. Null Bug22 mutant flies display cilia-associated phenotypes and nervous system defects. Furthermore, sperm differentiation is blocked at the individualization stage, due to impaired migration of the individualization machinery. Tubulin post-translational modifications (PTMs) such as polyglycylation, polyglutamylation or acetylation, are determinants of microtubule (MT) functions and stability in centrioles, cilia and neurons. We found defects in the timely incorporation of polyglycylation in sperm axonemal MTs of Bug22 mutants. In addition, we found that depletion of human Bug22 in RPE1 cells resulted in the appearance of longer cilia and reduced axonemal polyglutamylation. Our work identifies Bug22 as a protein that plays a conserved role in the regulation of PTMs of the ciliary axoneme. PMID:24414207

  10. Impact-Free Measurement of Microtubule Rotations on Kinesin and Cytoplasmic-Dynein Coated Surfaces

    PubMed Central

    Mitra, Aniruddha; Ruhnow, Felix; Nitzsche, Bert; Diez, Stefan

    2015-01-01

    Knowledge about the three-dimensional stepping of motor proteins on the surface of microtubules (MTs) as well as the torsional components in their power strokes can be inferred from longitudinal MT rotations in gliding motility assays. In previous studies, optical detection of these rotations relied on the tracking of rather large optical probes present on the outer MT surface. However, these probes may act as obstacles for motor stepping and may prevent the unhindered rotation of the gliding MTs. To overcome these limitations, we devised a novel, impact-free method to detect MT rotations based on fluorescent speckles within the MT structure in combination with fluorescence-interference contrast microscopy. We (i) confirmed the rotational pitches of MTs gliding on surfaces coated by kinesin-1 and kinesin-8 motors, (ii) demonstrated the superiority of our method over previous approaches on kinesin-8 coated surfaces at low ATP concentration, and (iii) identified MT rotations driven by mammalian cytoplasmic dynein, indicating that during collective motion cytoplasmic dynein side-steps with a bias in one direction. Our novel method is easy to implement on any state-of-the-art fluorescence microscope and allows for high-throughput experiments. PMID:26368807

  11. The Dam1 kinetochore complex harnesses microtubule dynamics to produce force and movement.

    PubMed

    Asbury, Charles L; Gestaut, Daniel R; Powers, Andrew F; Franck, Andrew D; Davis, Trisha N

    2006-06-27

    Kinetochores remain attached to microtubule (MT) tips during mitosis even as the tips assemble and disassemble under their grip, allowing filament dynamics to produce force and move chromosomes. The specific proteins that mediate tip attachment are uncertain, and the mechanism of MT-dependent force production is unknown. Recent work suggests that the Dam1 complex, an essential component of kinetochores in yeast, may contribute directly to kinetochore-MT attachment and force production, perhaps by forming a sliding ring encircling the MT. To test these hypotheses, we developed an in vitro motility assay where beads coated with pure recombinant Dam1 complex were bound to the tips of individual dynamic MTs. The Dam1-coated beads remained tip-bound and underwent assembly- and disassembly-driven movement over approximately 3 microm, comparable to chromosome displacements in vivo. Dam1-based attachments to assembling tips were robust, supporting 0.5-3 pN of tension applied with a feedback-controlled optical trap as the MTs lengthened approximately 1 microm. The attachments also harnessed energy from MT disassembly to generate movement against tension. Reversing the direction of force (i.e., switching to compressive force) caused the attachments to disengage the tip and slide over the filament, but sliding was blocked by areas where the MT was anchored to a coverslip, consistent with a coupling structure encircling the filament. Our findings demonstrate how the Dam1 complex may contribute directly to MT-driven chromosome movement.

  12. Molecular crowding creates traffic jams of kinesin motors on microtubules.

    PubMed

    Leduc, Cécile; Padberg-Gehle, Kathrin; Varga, Vladimír; Helbing, Dirk; Diez, Stefan; Howard, Jonathon

    2012-04-17

    Despite the crowdedness of the interior of cells, microtubule-based motor proteins are able to deliver cargoes rapidly and reliably throughout the cytoplasm. We hypothesize that motor proteins may be adapted to operate in crowded environments by having molecular properties that prevent them from forming traffic jams. To test this hypothesis, we reconstituted high-density traffic of purified kinesin-8 motor protein, a highly processive motor with long end-residency time, along microtubules in a total internal-reflection fluorescence microscopy assay. We found that traffic jams, characterized by an abrupt increase in the density of motors with an associated abrupt decrease in motor speed, form even in the absence of other obstructing proteins. To determine the molecular properties that lead to jamming, we altered the concentration of motors, their processivity, and their rate of dissociation from microtubule ends. Traffic jams occurred when the motor density exceeded a critical value (density-induced jams) or when motor dissociation from the microtubule ends was so slow that it resulted in a pileup (bottleneck-induced jams). Through comparison of our experimental results with theoretical models and stochastic simulations, we characterized in detail under which conditions density- and bottleneck-induced traffic jams form or do not form. Our results indicate that transport kinesins, such as kinesin-1, may be evolutionarily adapted to avoid the formation of traffic jams by moving only with moderate processivity and dissociating rapidly from microtubule ends.

  13. Tubulin tyrosine nitration regulates microtubule organization in plant cells

    PubMed Central

    Blume, Yaroslav B.; Krasylenko, Yuliya A.; Demchuk, Oleh M.; Yemets, Alla I.

    2013-01-01

    During last years, selective tyrosine nitration of plant proteins gains importance as well-recognized pathway of direct nitric oxide (NO) signal transduction. Plant microtubules are one of the intracellular signaling targets for NO, however, the molecular mechanisms of NO signal transduction with the involvement of cytoskeletal proteins remain to be elucidated. Since biochemical evidence of plant α-tubulin tyrosine nitration has been obtained recently, potential role of this posttranslational modification in regulation of microtubules organization in plant cell is estimated in current paper. It was shown that 3-nitrotyrosine (3-NO2-Tyr) induced partially reversible Arabidopsis primary root growth inhibition, alterations of root hairs morphology and organization of microtubules in root cells. It was also revealed that 3-NO2-Tyr intensively decorates such highly dynamic microtubular arrays as preprophase bands, mitotic spindles and phragmoplasts of Nicotiana tabacum Bright Yellow-2 (BY-2) cells under physiological conditions. Moreover, 3D models of the mitotic kinesin-8 complexes with the tail of detyrosinated, tyrosinated and tyrosine nitrated α-tubulin (on C-terminal Tyr 450 residue) from Arabidopsis were reconstructed in silico to investigate the potential influence of tubulin nitrotyrosination on the molecular dynamics of α-tubulin and kinesin-8 interaction. Generally, presented data suggest that plant α-tubulin tyrosine nitration can be considered as its common posttranslational modification, the direct mechanism of NO signal transduction with the participation of microtubules under physiological conditions and one of the hallmarks of the increased microtubule dynamics. PMID:24421781

  14. Spatial organization of the Ran pathway by microtubules in mitosis

    PubMed Central

    Oh, Doogie; Yu, Che-Hang; Needleman, Daniel J.

    2016-01-01

    Concentration gradients of soluble proteins are believed to be responsible for control of morphogenesis of subcellular systems, but the mechanisms that generate the spatial organization of these subcellular gradients remain poorly understood. Here, we use a newly developed multipoint fluorescence fluctuation spectroscopy technique to study the ras-related nuclear protein (Ran) pathway, which forms soluble gradients around chromosomes in mitosis and is thought to spatially regulate microtubule behaviors during spindle assembly. We found that the distribution of components of the Ran pathway that influence microtubule behaviors is determined by their interactions with microtubules, resulting in microtubule nucleators being localized by the microtubules whose formation they stimulate. Modeling and perturbation experiments show that this feedback makes the length of the spindle insensitive to the length scale of the Ran gradient, allows the spindle to assemble outside the peak of the Ran gradient, and explains the scaling of the spindle with cell size. Such feedback between soluble signaling pathways and the mechanics of the cytoskeleton may be a general feature of subcellular organization. PMID:27439876

  15. Microtubules contribute to maintain nucleus shape in epithelial cell monolayer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tremblay, Dominique; Andrzejewski, Lukasz; Pelling, Andrew

    2013-03-01

    INTRODUCTION: Tissue strains can result in significant nuclear deformations and may regulate gene expression. However, the precise role of the cytoskeleton in regulating nuclear mechanics remains poorly understood. Here, we investigate the nuclear deformability of Madin-Darky canine kidney cells (MDCK) under various stretching conditions to clarify the role of the microtubules and actin network on the mechanical behavior of the nucleus. METHODS: A custom-built cell-stretching device allowing for real time imaging of MDCK nuclei was used. Cells were seeded on a silicone membrane coated with rat-tail collagen I. A nuclear stain, Hoechst-33342, was used to image nuclei during stretching. We exposed cells to a compressive and non-compressive stretching strain field of 25%. Nocodazole and cytochalasin-D were used to depolymerize the microtubules and actin network. RESULTS: Nuclei in control cells stretched more along their minor axis than major axis with a deformation of 5% and 2% respectively. This anisotropy vanished completely in microtubule-deprived cells and these cells showed a very high nuclear deformability along the minor axis when exposed to a compressive stretching strain field. CONCLUSIONS: The microtubules drive the anisotropic deformability of MDCK nuclei in a monolayer and maintain nuclear shape when exposed to compressive strain. Such intrinsic mechanical behavior indicates that microtubules are essential to maintain nuclear shape and may prevent down regulation of gene expression.

  16. SYNTHESIS AND STORAGE OF MICROTUBULE PROTEINS BY SEA URCHIN EMBRYOS

    PubMed Central

    Raff, Rudolf A.; Greenhouse, Gerald; Gross, Kenneth W.; Gross, Paul R.

    1971-01-01

    Studies employing colchicine binding, precipitation with vinblastine sulfate, and acrylamide gel electrophoresis confirm earlier proposals that Arbacia punctulata and Lytechinus pictus eggs and embryos contain a store of microtubule proteins. Treatment of 150,000 g supernatants from sea urchin homogenates with vinblastine sulfate precipitates about 5% of the total soluble protein, and 75% of the colchicine-binding activity. Electrophoretic examination of the precipitate reveals two very prominent bands. These have migration rates identical to those of the A and B microtubule proteins of cilia. These proteins can be made radioactive at the 16 cell stage and at hatching by pulse labeling with tritiated amino acids. By labeling for 1 hr with leucine-3H in early cleavage, then culturing embryos in the presence of unlabeled leucine, removal of newly synthesized microtubule proteins from the soluble pool can be demonstrated. Incorporation of labeled amino acids into microtubule proteins is not affected by culturing embryos continuously in 20 µg/ml of actinomycin D. Microtubule proteins appear, therefore, to be synthesized on "maternal" messenger RNA. This provides the first protein encoded by stored or "masked" mRNA in sea urchin embryos to be identified. PMID:5165266

  17. Molecular crowding creates traffic jams of kinesin motors on microtubules

    PubMed Central

    Leduc, Cécile; Padberg-Gehle, Kathrin; Varga, Vladimír; Helbing, Dirk; Diez, Stefan; Howard, Jonathon

    2012-01-01

    Despite the crowdedness of the interior of cells, microtubule-based motor proteins are able to deliver cargoes rapidly and reliably throughout the cytoplasm. We hypothesize that motor proteins may be adapted to operate in crowded environments by having molecular properties that prevent them from forming traffic jams. To test this hypothesis, we reconstituted high-density traffic of purified kinesin-8 motor protein, a highly processive motor with long end-residency time, along microtubules in a total internal-reflection fluorescence microscopy assay. We found that traffic jams, characterized by an abrupt increase in the density of motors with an associated abrupt decrease in motor speed, form even in the absence of other obstructing proteins. To determine the molecular properties that lead to jamming, we altered the concentration of motors, their processivity, and their rate of dissociation from microtubule ends. Traffic jams occurred when the motor density exceeded a critical value (density-induced jams) or when motor dissociation from the microtubule ends was so slow that it resulted in a pileup (bottleneck-induced jams). Through comparison of our experimental results with theoretical models and stochastic simulations, we characterized in detail under which conditions density- and bottleneck-induced traffic jams form or do not form. Our results indicate that transport kinesins, such as kinesin-1, may be evolutionarily adapted to avoid the formation of traffic jams by moving only with moderate processivity and dissociating rapidly from microtubule ends. PMID:22431622

  18. Comparison of ciliature microtubule organelles in three hypotrichous ciliate species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Yisong; Shi, Lei; Gu, Fukang

    2010-05-01

    We examined the structure and spatial organization of ciliature base-associated microtubules (BAM) in three hypotrichous ciliates ( Stylonychia mytilus, Pseudourostyla cristata, Euplotes woodruffi) in fluorescence microscopy. The results revealed that BAM, including the anterior (ALM), posterior longitudinal microtubule (PLM) and the transverse microtubule (TM) bands, are composed of tubulin. The respective microtubular bands have cytoplasmic polarization patterns that are significantly asymmetric. The BAM of the midventral files in P. cristata appear cord-shaped compared with the ALM bands of transverse cirri in both S. mytilus and E. woodruffi, which extend to the left anterior side of the cell before converging. The TM bands of the left marginal cirri (MC) in S. mytilus extend to the right side of the cell, while those of the right MC bands extend to the left. Our observations suggest that BAM traits are common in hypotrichous ciliates even though different species possess different microtubule arrangements related to the conserved cirral morphogenetic patterns in the respective species. The differing development of BAM in the three ciliate suggests that the microtubules may be conserved in different hypotrichs. We have also demonstrated that the BAM, which appear polar and asymmetric, are localized in specific cytoskeletal positions and extend in different orientations within the cortex to connect with other ciliature-associated structures and, thus, strengthen the cortex. These BAM features indicate that they are directly associated with cell motion.

  19. Self-organized pattern formation in motor-microtubule mixtures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sankararaman, Sumithra; Menon, Gautam I.; Sunil Kumar, P. B.

    2004-09-01

    We model the stable self-organized patterns obtained in the nonequilibrium steady states of mixtures of molecular motors and microtubules. In experiments [Nédélec , Nature (London) 389, 305 (1997); Surrey , Science 292, 1167 (2001)] performed in a quasi-two-dimensional geometry, microtubules are oriented by complexes of motor proteins. This interaction yields a variety of patterns, including arrangements of asters, vortices, and disordered configurations. We model this system via a two-dimensional vector field describing the local coarse-grained microtubule orientation and two scalar density fields associated to molecular motors. These scalar fields describe motors which either attach to and move along microtubules or diffuse freely within the solvent. Transitions between single aster, spiral, and vortex states are obtained as a consequence of confinement, as parameters in our model are varied. For systems in which the effects of confinement can be neglected, we present a map of nonequilibrium steady states, which includes arrangements of asters and vortices separately as well as aster-vortex mixtures and fully disordered states. We calculate the steady state distribution of bound and free motors in aster and vortex configurations of microtubules and compare these to our simulation results, providing qualitative arguments for the stability of different patterns in various regimes of parameter space. We study the role of crowding or “saturation” effects on the density profiles of motors in asters, discussing the role of such effects in stabilizing single asters. We also comment on the implications of our results for experiments.

  20. Microtubule aging probed by microfluidics-assisted tubulin washout

    PubMed Central

    Duellberg, Christian; Cade, Nicholas Ian; Surrey, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    Microtubules switch stochastically between phases of growth and shrinkage. The molecular mechanism responsible for the end of a growth phase, an event called catastrophe, is still not understood. The probability for a catastrophe to occur increases with microtubule age, putting constraints on the possible molecular mechanism of catastrophe induction. Here we used microfluidics-assisted fast tubulin washout experiments to induce microtubule depolymerization in a controlled manner at different times after the start of growth. We found that aging can also be observed in this assay, providing valuable new constraints against which theoretical models of catastrophe induction can be tested. We found that the data can be quantitatively well explained by a simple kinetic threshold model that assumes an age-dependent broadening of the protective cap at the microtubule end as a result of an evolving tapered end structure; this leads to a decrease of the cap density and its stability. This analysis suggests an intuitive picture of the role of morphological changes of the protective cap for the age dependence of microtubule stability. PMID:27489342

  1. The feasibility of coherent energy transfer in microtubules.

    PubMed

    Craddock, Travis John Adrian; Friesen, Douglas; Mane, Jonathan; Hameroff, Stuart; Tuszynski, Jack A

    2014-11-06

    It was once purported that biological systems were far too 'warm and wet' to support quantum phenomena mainly owing to thermal effects disrupting quantum coherence. However, recent experimental results and theoretical analyses have shown that thermal energy may assist, rather than disrupt, quantum coherent transport, especially in the 'dry' hydrophobic interiors of biomolecules. Specifically, evidence has been accumulating for the necessary involvement of quantum coherent energy transfer between uniquely arranged chromophores in light harvesting photosynthetic complexes. The 'tubulin' subunit proteins, which comprise microtubules, also possess a distinct architecture of chromophores, namely aromatic amino acids, including tryptophan. The geometry and dipolar properties of these aromatics are similar to those found in photosynthetic units indicating that tubulin may support coherent energy transfer. Tubulin aggregated into microtubule geometric lattices may support such energy transfer, which could be important for biological signalling and communication essential to living processes. Here, we perform a computational investigation of energy transfer between chromophoric amino acids in tubulin via dipole excitations coupled to the surrounding thermal environment. We present the spatial structure and energetic properties of the tryptophan residues in the microtubule constituent protein tubulin. Plausibility arguments for the conditions favouring a quantum mechanism of signal propagation along a microtubule are provided. Overall, we find that coherent energy transfer in tubulin and microtubules is biologically feasible.

  2. Diffusive Movement of Processive Kinesin-1 on Microtubules

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Hailong; Ali, M. Yusuf; Bookwalter, Carol S.; Warshaw, David M.; Trybus, Kathleen M.

    2009-01-01

    The processive motor kinesin-1 moves unidirectionally toward the plus end of microtubules. This process can be visualized by total internal reflection fluorescence (TIRF) microscopy of kinesin bound to a carboxylated Quantum dot (Qdot), which acts both as cargo and label. Surprisingly, when kinesin is bound to an anti-HIS Qdot, it shows diffusive movement on microtubules, which decreased in favor of processive runs with increasing salt concentration. This observation implies that kinesin movement on microtubules is governed by its conformation, as it is well-established that kinesin undergoes a salt-dependent transition from a folded (inactive) to an extended (active) molecule. A truncated kinesin lacking the last 75 amino acids (kinesin-ΔC) showed both processive and diffusive movement on microtubules. The extent of each behavior depends on the relative amounts of ADP and ATP, with purely diffusive movement occurring in ADP alone. Taken together, these data imply that folded kinesin.ADP can exist in a state that diffuses along the microtubule lattice without expending energy. This mechanism may facilitate the ability of kinesin to pick up cargo, and/or allow the kinesin/cargo complex to stay bound after encountering obstacles. PMID:19682327

  3. A Quantitative Method for Microtubule Analysis in Fluorescence Images.

    PubMed

    Lan, Xiaodong; Li, Lingfei; Hu, Jiongyu; Zhang, Qiong; Dang, Yongming; Huang, Yuesheng

    2015-12-01

    Microtubule analysis is of significant value for a better understanding of normal and pathological cellular processes. Although immunofluorescence microscopic techniques have proven useful in the study of microtubules, comparative results commonly rely on a descriptive and subjective visual analysis. We developed an objective and quantitative method based on image processing and analysis of fluorescently labeled microtubular patterns in cultured cells. We used a multi-parameter approach by analyzing four quantifiable characteristics to compose our quantitative feature set. Then we interpreted specific changes in the parameters and revealed the contribution of each feature set using principal component analysis. In addition, we verified that different treatment groups could be clearly discriminated using principal components of the multi-parameter model. High predictive accuracy of four commonly used multi-classification methods confirmed our method. These results demonstrated the effectiveness and efficiency of our method in the analysis of microtubules in fluorescence images. Application of the analytical methods presented here provides information concerning the organization and modification of microtubules, and could aid in the further understanding of structural and functional aspects of microtubules under normal and pathological conditions.

  4. Microtubule aging probed by microfluidics-assisted tubulin washout.

    PubMed

    Duellberg, Christian; Cade, Nicholas Ian; Surrey, Thomas

    2016-11-07

    Microtubules switch stochastically between phases of growth and shrinkage. The molecular mechanism responsible for the end of a growth phase, an event called catastrophe, is still not understood. The probability for a catastrophe to occur increases with microtubule age, putting constraints on the possible molecular mechanism of catastrophe induction. Here we used microfluidics-assisted fast tubulin washout experiments to induce microtubule depolymerization in a controlled manner at different times after the start of growth. We found that aging can also be observed in this assay, providing valuable new constraints against which theoretical models of catastrophe induction can be tested. We found that the data can be quantitatively well explained by a simple kinetic threshold model that assumes an age-dependent broadening of the protective cap at the microtubule end as a result of an evolving tapered end structure; this leads to a decrease of the cap density and its stability. This analysis suggests an intuitive picture of the role of morphological changes of the protective cap for the age dependence of microtubule stability.

  5. Single molecule studies reveal new mechanisms for microtubule severing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ross, Jennifer; Diaz-Valencia, Juan Daniel; Morelli, Margaret; Zhang, Dong; Sharp, David

    2011-03-01

    Microtubule-severing enzymes are hexameric complexes made from monomeric enzyme subunits that remove tubulin dimers from the microtubule lattice. Severing proteins are known to remodel the cytoskeleton during interphase and mitosis, and are required in proper axon morphology and mammalian bone and cartilage development. We have performed the first single molecule imaging to determine where and how severing enzymes act to cut microtubules. We have focused on the original member of the group, katanin, and the newest member, fidgetin to compare their biophysical activities in vitro. We find that, as expected, severing proteins localize to areas of activity. Interestingly, the association is very brief: they do not stay bound nor do they bind cooperatively at active sites. The association duration changes with the nucleotide content, implying that the state in the catalytic cycle dictates binding affinity with the microtubule. We also discovered that, at lower concentrations, both katanin and fidgetin can depolymerize taxol-stabilized microtubules by removing terminal dimers. These studies reveal the physical regulation schemes to control severing activity in cells, and ultimately regulate cytoskeletal architecture. This work is supported by the March of Dimes Grant #5-FY09-46.

  6. Tryprostatin A, a specific and novel inhibitor of microtubule assembly.

    PubMed

    Usui, T; Kondoh, M; Cui, C B; Mayumi, T; Osada, H

    1998-08-01

    We have investigated the cell cycle inhibition mechanism and primary target of tryprostatin A (TPS-A) purified from Aspergillus fumigatus. TPS-A inhibited cell cycle progression of asynchronously cultured 3Y1 cells in the M phase in a dose- and time-dependent manner. In contrast, TPS-B (the demethoxy analogue of TPS-A) showed cell-cycle non-specific inhibition on cell growth even though it inhibited cell growth at lower concentrations than TPS-A. TPS-A treatment induced the reversible disruption of the cytoplasmic microtubules of 3Y1 cells as observed by indirect immunofluorescence microscopy in the range of concentrations that specifically inhibited M-phase progression. TPS-A inhibited the assembly in vitro of microtubules purified from bovine brains (40% inhibition at 250 microM); however, there was little or no effect on the self-assembly of purified tubulin when polymerization was induced by glutamate even at 250 microM TPS-A. TPS-A did not inhibit assembly promoted by taxol or by digestion of the C-terminal domain of tubulin. However, TPS-A blocked the tubulin assembly induced by inducers interacting with the C-terminal domain, microtubule-associated protein 2 (MAP2), tau and poly-(l-lysine). These results indicate that TPS-A is a novel inhibitor of MAP-dependent microtubule assembly and, through the disruption of the microtubule spindle, specifically inhibits cell cycle progression at the M phase.

  7. Microtubule guiding in a multi-walled carbon nanotube circuit.

    PubMed

    Sikora, Aurélien; Ramón-Azcón, Javier; Sen, Mustafa; Kim, Kyongwan; Nakazawa, Hikaru; Umetsu, Mitsuo; Kumagai, Izumi; Shiku, Hitoshi; Matsue, Tomokazu; Teizer, Winfried

    2015-08-01

    In nanotechnological devices, mass transport can be initiated by pressure driven flow, diffusion or by employing molecular motors. As the scale decreases, molecular motors can be helpful as they are not limited by increased viscous resistance. Moreover, molecular motors can move against diffusion gradients and are naturally fitted for nanoscale transportation. Among motor proteins, kinesin has particular potential for lab-on-a-chip applications. It can be used for sorting, concentrating or as a mechanical sensor. When bound to a surface, kinesin motors propel microtubules in random directions, depending on their landing orientation. In order to circumvent this complication, the microtubule motion should be confined or guided. To this end, dielectrophoretically aligned multi-walled-carbon nanotubes (MWCNT) can be employed as nanotracks. In order to control more precisely the spatial repartition of the MWCNTs, a screening method has been implemented and tested. Polygonal patterns have been fabricated with the aim of studying the guiding and the microtubule displacement between MWCNT segments. Microtubules are observed to transfer between MWCNT segments, a prerequisite for the guiding of microtubules in MWCNT circuit-based biodevices. The effect of the MWCNT organization (crenellated or hexagonal) on the MT travel distance has been investigated as well.

  8. Mechanism of action of antitumor drugs that interact with microtubules and tubulin.

    PubMed

    Jordan, M A

    2002-01-01

    Microtubules, major structural components in cells, are the target of a large and diverse group of natural product anticancer drugs. Given the success of this class of drugs in cancer treatment, it can be argued that microtubules represent the single best cancer target identified to date. Microtubules are highly dynamic assemblies of the protein tubulin. They readily polymerize and depolymerize in cells, and they undergo two interesting kinds of dynamics called dynamic instability and treadmilling. These dynamic behaviors are crucial to mitosis, the process of chromosomal division to form new cells. Microtubule dynamics are highly regulated during the cell cycle by endogenous cellular regulators. In addition, many antitumor drugs and natural compounds alter the polymerization dynamics of microtubules, blocking mitosis, and consequently, inducing cell death by apoptosis. These drugs include several that inhibit microtubule polymerization at high drug concentrations, namely, the Vinca alkaloids, cryptophycins, halichondrins, estramustine, and colchicine. Another group of these compounds stimulates microtubule polymerization and stabilizes microtubules at high concentrations. These include Taxol, Taxotere, eleutherobins, epothilones, laulimalide, sarcodictyins, and discodermolide. Importantly, considerable evidence indicates that, at lower concentrations, these drugs have a common mechanism of action; they suppress the dynamics of microtubules without appreciably changing the mass of microtubules in the cell. The drugs bind to diverse sites on tubulin and at different positions within the microtubule, and they have diverse effects on microtubule dynamics. However, by their common mechanism of suppression microtubule dynamics, they all block mitosis at the metaphase/anaphase transition, and induce cell death.

  9. Kinetochore-Dependent Microtubule Rescue Ensures Their Efficient and Sustained Interactions in Early Mitosis

    PubMed Central

    Gandhi, Sapan R.; Gierliński, Marek; Mino, Akihisa; Tanaka, Kozo; Kitamura, Etsushi; Clayton, Lesley; Tanaka, Tomoyuki U.

    2011-01-01

    Summary How kinetochores regulate microtubule dynamics to ensure proper kinetochore-microtubule interactions is unknown. Here, we studied this during early mitosis in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. When a microtubule shrinks and its plus end reaches a kinetochore bound to its lateral surface, the microtubule end attempts to tether the kinetochore. This process often fails and, responding to this failure, microtubule rescue (conversion from shrinkage to growth) occurs, preventing kinetochore detachment from the microtubule end. This rescue is promoted by Stu2 transfer (ortholog of vertebrate XMAP215/ch-TOG) from the kinetochore to the microtubule end. Meanwhile, microtubule rescue distal to the kinetochore is also promoted by Stu2, which is transported by a kinesin-8 motor Kip3 along the microtubule from the kinetochore. Microtubule extension following rescue facilitates interaction with other widely scattered kinetochores, diminishing long delays in collecting the complete set of kinetochores by microtubules. Thus, kinetochore-dependent microtubule rescue ensures efficient and sustained kinetochore-microtubule interactions in early mitosis. PMID:22075150

  10. Distinct roles for antiparallel microtubule pairing and overlap during early spindle assembly

    PubMed Central

    Nazarova, Elena; O'Toole, Eileen; Kaitna, Susi; Francois, Paul; Winey, Mark; Vogel, Jackie

    2013-01-01

    During spindle assembly, microtubules may attach to kinetochores or pair to form antiparallel pairs or interpolar microtubules, which span the two spindle poles and contribute to mitotic pole separation and chromosome segregation. Events in the specification of the interpolar microtubules are poorly understood. Using three-dimensional electron tomography and analysis of spindle dynamical behavior in living cells, we investigated the process of spindle assembly. Unexpectedly, we found that the phosphorylation state of an evolutionarily conserved Cdk1 site (S360) in γ-tubulin is correlated with the number and organization of interpolar microtubules. Mimicking S360 phosphorylation (S360D) results in bipolar spindles with a normal number of microtubules but lacking interpolar microtubules. Inhibiting S360 phosphorylation (S360A) results in spindles with interpolar microtubules and high-angle, antiparallel microtubule pairs. The latter are also detected in wild-type spindles <1 μm in length, suggesting that high-angle microtubule pairing represents an intermediate step in interpolar microtubule formation. Correlation of spindle architecture with dynamical behavior suggests that microtubule pairing is sufficient to separate the spindle poles, whereas interpolar microtubules maintain the velocity of pole displacement during early spindle assembly. Our findings suggest that the number of interpolar microtubules formed during spindle assembly is controlled in part through activities at the spindle poles. PMID:23966467

  11. Microtubule–microtubule sliding by kinesin-1 is essential for normal cytoplasmic streaming in Drosophila oocytes

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Wen; Winding, Michael; Lakonishok, Margot; Wildonger, Jill

    2016-01-01

    Cytoplasmic streaming in Drosophila oocytes is a microtubule-based bulk cytoplasmic movement. Streaming efficiently circulates and localizes mRNAs and proteins deposited by the nurse cells across the oocyte. This movement is driven by kinesin-1, a major microtubule motor. Recently, we have shown that kinesin-1 heavy chain (KHC) can transport one microtubule on another microtubule, thus driving microtubule–microtubule sliding in multiple cell types. To study the role of microtubule sliding in oocyte cytoplasmic streaming, we used a Khc mutant that is deficient in microtubule sliding but able to transport a majority of cargoes. We demonstrated that streaming is reduced by genomic replacement of wild-type Khc with this sliding-deficient mutant. Streaming can be fully rescued by wild-type KHC and partially rescued by a chimeric motor that cannot move organelles but is active in microtubule sliding. Consistent with these data, we identified two populations of microtubules in fast-streaming oocytes: a network of stable microtubules anchored to the actin cortex and free cytoplasmic microtubules that moved in the ooplasm. We further demonstrated that the reduced streaming in sliding-deficient oocytes resulted in posterior determination defects. Together, we propose that kinesin-1 slides free cytoplasmic microtubules against cortically immobilized microtubules, generating forces that contribute to cytoplasmic streaming and are essential for the refinement of posterior determinants. PMID:27512034

  12. Recycling of cold-stable microtubules: evidence that cold stability is due to substoichiometric polymer blocks.

    PubMed

    Job, D; Rauch, C T; Fischer, E H; Margolis, R L

    1982-02-02

    A substantial subpopulation of mammalian brain crude extract microtubules is resistant to cold-temperature disassembly. We propose here that microtubules are rendered cold stable by rare substoichiometric blocks. Mild shearing of rat brain cold-stable microtubules makes them largely cold labile. In addition, cold-stable microtubules can be destabilized by exposure to low concentrations of calmodulin (5 microM) in the presence of calcium at 0 degree C. Cold-disassembled microtubule protein, obtained from sheared or calmodulin-treated cold-stable preparations, re-forms a cold-stable subpopulation upon reassembly. These observations allow strategies for the recycling purification of cold-stable microtubules. Comparison of purified cold-labile and cold-stable material by gel electrophoresis shows enrichment for a few unique polypeptides, of 135, 70-82, and 56 kilodaltons, in the cold-stable preparation. The 64-kilodalton "switch protein", previously identified as uniquely dephosphorylated in cold-stable microtubules, is equally represented in recycled cold-stable and cold-labile microtubule preparations. Furthermore, when disassembled, cold-stable microtubule proteins are passed through a calmodulin affinity column on which the polypeptides characteristic of cold-stable microtubules are specifically retained, the breakthrough (unbound) material repolymerizes into cold-labile microtubules only. Based on the above data, a model is presented in which microtubules are rendered cold stable by the presence of substoichiometric, calmodulin-sensitive blocks that randomly reshuffle upon reassembly of cold-stable microtubules.

  13. Electrical Signaling in Motile and Primary Cilia

    PubMed Central

    Kleene, Steven J.; Van Houten, Judith L.

    2014-01-01

    Cilia are highly conserved for their structure and also for their sensory functions. They serve as antennae for extracellular information. Whether the cilia are motile or not, they respond to environmental mechanical and chemical stimuli and send signals to the cell body. The information from extracellular stimuli is commonly converted to electrical signals through the repertoire of ion-conducting channels in the ciliary membrane, which results in changes in concentrations of ions, especially calcium ions, in the cilia. These changes, in turn, affect motility and the ability of the signaling pathways in the cilia and cell body to carry on the signal transduction. We review here the activities of ion channels in cilia in animals from protists to vertebrates. PMID:25892740

  14. Hydrodynamic Contributions to Amoeboid Cell Motility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lewis, Owen; Guy, Robert

    2012-11-01

    Understanding the methods by which cells move is a fundamental problem in modern biology. Recent evidence has shown that the fluid dynamics of cytoplasm can play a vital role in cellular motility. The slime mold Physarum polycephalum provides an excellent model organism for the study of amoeboid motion. In this research, we use a simply analytic model in conjuction with computational experiments to investigate intracellular fluid flow in a simple model of Physarum. Of particlar interest are stresses generated by cytoplasmic flow which may be used to aid in cellular motility. In our numerical model, the Immersed Boundary Method is used to account for such stresses. We investigate the relationship between contraction waves, flow waves, adhesion, and locomotive forces in an attempt to characterize conditions necessary to generate directed motion.

  15. Hydrodynamic Contributions to Amoeboid Cell Motility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lewis, Owen; Guy, Robert

    2011-11-01

    Understanding the methods by which cells move is a fundamental problem in modern biology. Recent evidence has shown that the fluid dynamics of cytoplasm can play a vital role in cellular motility. The slime mold Physarum polycephalum provides an excellent model organism for the study of amoeboid motion. In this research, we use both analytic and computational models to investigate intracellular fluid flow in a simple model of Physarum. In both models, of we are specifically interested in stresses generated by cytoplasmic flow which act in the direction of cellular motility. In our numerical model, the Immersed Boundary Method is used to account for such stresses. We investigate the relationship between contraction waves, low waves and locomotive forces, and attempt characterize conditions necessary to generate directed motion.

  16. Uterine motility in patients with bicornuate uterus.

    PubMed

    Oliva, G C; Fratoni, A; Genova, M; Romanini, C

    1992-01-01

    This study analyzes uterine motility in 12 women with a bicornuate uterus using the results of the recordings of endo-uterine pressure, obtained with two balloon-closed catheters. Seven patients had symmetric uterine cavities, while the rest (5 patient) had very dissimilar ones. The registration of the uterine motility was carried out during various phases of the cycle and after the administration of two drugs (oxitocin and methylergobasine), with the following results: the bicornuate uterus has a spontaneous activity similar to that of a normal uterus. A similar contractile response was observed in the uteri with two anatomically symmetric horns, whereas a dissimilar response was typical of the uteri with marked anatomic differences between the two horns.

  17. Symbiosis and the origin of eukaryotic motility

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Margulis, L.; Hinkle, G.

    1991-01-01

    Ongoing work to test the hypothesis of the origin of eukaryotic cell organelles by microbial symbioses is discussed. Because of the widespread acceptance of the serial endosymbiotic theory (SET) of the origin of plastids and mitochondria, the idea of the symbiotic origin of the centrioles and axonemes for spirochete bacteria motility symbiosis was tested. Intracellular microtubular systems are purported to derive from symbiotic associations between ancestral eukaryotic cells and motile bacteria. Four lines of approach to this problem are being pursued: (1) cloning the gene of a tubulin-like protein discovered in Spirocheata bajacaliforniesis; (2) seeking axoneme proteins in spirochets by antibody cross-reaction; (3) attempting to cultivate larger, free-living spirochetes; and (4) studying in detail spirochetes (e.g., Cristispira) symbiotic with marine animals. Other aspects of the investigation are presented.

  18. Soft micromachines with programmable motility and morphology.

    PubMed

    Huang, Hen-Wei; Sakar, Mahmut Selman; Petruska, Andrew J; Pané, Salvador; Nelson, Bradley J

    2016-07-22

    Nature provides a wide range of inspiration for building mobile micromachines that can navigate through confined heterogenous environments and perform minimally invasive environmental and biomedical operations. For example, microstructures fabricated in the form of bacterial or eukaryotic flagella can act as artificial microswimmers. Due to limitations in their design and material properties, these simple micromachines lack multifunctionality, effective addressability and manoeuvrability in complex environments. Here we develop an origami-inspired rapid prototyping process for building self-folding, magnetically powered micromachines with complex body plans, reconfigurable shape and controllable motility. Selective reprogramming of the mechanical design and magnetic anisotropy of body parts dynamically modulates the swimming characteristics of the micromachines. We find that tail and body morphologies together determine swimming efficiency and, unlike for rigid swimmers, the choice of magnetic field can subtly change the motility of soft microswimmers.

  19. Soft micromachines with programmable motility and morphology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Hen-Wei; Sakar, Mahmut Selman; Petruska, Andrew J.; Pané, Salvador; Nelson, Bradley J.

    2016-07-01

    Nature provides a wide range of inspiration for building mobile micromachines that can navigate through confined heterogenous environments and perform minimally invasive environmental and biomedical operations. For example, microstructures fabricated in the form of bacterial or eukaryotic flagella can act as artificial microswimmers. Due to limitations in their design and material properties, these simple micromachines lack multifunctionality, effective addressability and manoeuvrability in complex environments. Here we develop an origami-inspired rapid prototyping process for building self-folding, magnetically powered micromachines with complex body plans, reconfigurable shape and controllable motility. Selective reprogramming of the mechanical design and magnetic anisotropy of body parts dynamically modulates the swimming characteristics of the micromachines. We find that tail and body morphologies together determine swimming efficiency and, unlike for rigid swimmers, the choice of magnetic field can subtly change the motility of soft microswimmers.

  20. A Comprehensive Genetic Characterization of Bacterial Motility

    PubMed Central

    Girgis, Hany S; Liu, Yirchung; Ryu, William S; Tavazoie, Saeed

    2007-01-01

    We have developed a powerful experimental framework that combines competitive selection and microarray-based genetic footprinting to comprehensively reveal the genetic basis of bacterial behaviors. Application of this method to Escherichia coli motility identifies 95% of the known flagellar and chemotaxis genes, and reveals three dozen novel loci that, to varying degrees and through diverse mechanisms, affect motility. To probe the network context in which these genes function, we developed a method that uncovers genome-wide epistatic interactions through comprehensive analyses of double-mutant phenotypes. This allows us to place the novel genes within the context of signaling and regulatory networks, including the Rcs phosphorelay pathway and the cyclic di-GMP second-messenger system. This unifying framework enables sensitive and comprehensive genetic characterization of complex behaviors across the microbial biosphere. PMID:17941710

  1. Endocytic reawakening of motility in jammed epithelia.

    PubMed

    Malinverno, Chiara; Corallino, Salvatore; Giavazzi, Fabio; Bergert, Martin; Li, Qingsen; Leoni, Marco; Disanza, Andrea; Frittoli, Emanuela; Oldani, Amanda; Martini, Emanuele; Lendenmann, Tobias; Deflorian, Gianluca; Beznoussenko, Galina V; Poulikakos, Dimos; Ong, Kok Haur; Uroz, Marina; Trepat, Xavier; Parazzoli, Dario; Maiuri, Paolo; Yu, Weimiao; Ferrari, Aldo; Cerbino, Roberto; Scita, Giorgio

    2017-01-30

    Dynamics of epithelial monolayers has recently been interpreted in terms of a jamming or rigidity transition. How cells control such phase transitions is, however, unknown. Here we show that RAB5A, a key endocytic protein, is sufficient to induce large-scale, coordinated motility over tens of cells, and ballistic motion in otherwise kinetically arrested monolayers. This is linked to increased traction forces and to the extension of cell protrusions, which align with local velocity. Molecularly, impairing endocytosis, macropinocytosis or increasing fluid efflux abrogates RAB5A-induced collective motility. A simple model based on mechanical junctional tension and an active cell reorientation mechanism for the velocity of self-propelled cells identifies regimes of monolayer dynamics that explain endocytic reawakening of locomotion in terms of a combination of large-scale directed migration and local unjamming. These changes in multicellular dynamics enable collectives to migrate under physical constraints and may be exploited by tumours for interstitial dissemination.

  2. Cell motility: Combining experiments with modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rappel, Wouter-Jan

    2013-03-01

    Cell migration and motility is a pervasive process in many biology systems. It involves intra-cellular signal transduction pathways that eventually lead to membrane extension and contraction. Here we describe our efforts to combine quantitative experiments with theoretical and computational modeling to gain fundamental insights into eukaryotic cell motion. In particular, we will focus on the amoeboid motion of Dictyostelium discoideum cells. This work is supported by the National Institutes of Health (P01 GM078586)

  3. Motility-indole-lysine-sulfide medium.

    PubMed

    Ederer, G M; Lund, M E; Blazevic, D J; Reller, L B; Mirrett, S

    1975-09-01

    A medium designed for the detection of motility, indole, lysine decarboxylase and deaminase reactions, and H2S production was devised and evaluated. Results, using 157 strains of enteric pathogens, were in agreement with reference methods. When 300 isolates from fecal cultures were screened using this medium, Shigella was easily differentiated from Escherichia and more of the Proteus species, especially P. morganii, could be eliminated from further study.

  4. Waves of actin and microtubule polymerization drive microtubule-based transport and neurite growth before single axon formation

    PubMed Central

    Winans, Amy M; Collins, Sean R; Meyer, Tobias

    2016-01-01

    Many developing neurons transition through a multi-polar state with many competing neurites before assuming a unipolar state with one axon and multiple dendrites. Hallmarks of the multi-polar state are large fluctuations in microtubule-based transport into and outgrowth of different neurites, although what drives these fluctuations remains elusive. We show that actin waves, which stochastically migrate from the cell body towards neurite tips, direct microtubule-based transport during the multi-polar state. Our data argue for a mechanical control system whereby actin waves transiently widen the neurite shaft to allow increased microtubule polymerization to direct Kinesin-based transport and create bursts of neurite extension. Actin waves also require microtubule polymerization, arguing that positive feedback links these two components. We propose that actin waves create large stochastic fluctuations in microtubule-based transport and neurite outgrowth, promoting competition between neurites as they explore the environment until sufficient external cues can direct one to become the axon. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.12387.001 PMID:26836307

  5. Mouse infection and pathogenesis by Trypanosoma brucei motility mutants.

    PubMed

    Kisalu, Neville K; Langousis, Gerasimos; Bentolila, Laurent A; Ralston, Katherine S; Hill, Kent L

    2014-06-01

    The flagellum of Trypanosoma brucei is an essential and multifunctional organelle that drives parasite motility and is receiving increased attention as a potential drug target. In the mammalian host, parasite motility is suspected to contribute to infection and disease pathogenesis. However, it has not been possible to test this hypothesis owing to lack of motility mutants that are viable in the bloodstream life cycle stage that infects the mammalian host. We recently identified a bloodstream-form motility mutant in 427-derived T. brucei in which point mutations in the LC1 dynein subunit disrupt propulsive motility but do not affect viability. These mutants have an actively beating flagellum, but cannot translocate. Here we demonstrate that the LC1 point mutant fails to show enhanced cell motility upon increasing viscosity of the surrounding medium, which is a hallmark of wild type T. brucei, thus indicating that motility of the mutant is fundamentally altered compared with wild type cells. We next used the LC1 point mutant to assess the influence of trypanosome motility on infection in mice. Wesurprisingly found that disrupting parasite motility has no discernible effect on T. brucei bloodstream infection. Infection time-course, maximum parasitaemia, number of waves of parasitaemia, clinical features and disease outcome are indistinguishable between motility mutant and control parasites. Our studies provide an important step toward understanding the contribution of parasite motility to infection and a foundation for future investigations of T. brucei interaction with the mammalian host.

  6. Mitochondrial inheritance is mediated by microtubules in mammalian cell division

    PubMed Central

    Lawrence, Elizabeth; Mandato, Craig

    2013-01-01

    The mitochondrial network fragments and becomes uniformly dispersed within the cytoplasm when mammalian cells enter mitosis. Such morphology and distribution of mitochondria was previously thought to facilitate the stochastic inheritance of mitochondria by daughter cells. In contrast, we recently reported that mitochondria in dividing mammalian cells are inherited by an ordered mechanism of inheritance mediated by microtubules. We showed that mitochondria are progressively enriched at the cell equator and depleted at the poles throughout division. Furthermore, the mitochondrial distribution during division is dependent on microtubules, indicating an ordered inheritance strategy. The microtubule-mediated positioning of mitochondria in dividing mammalian cells may have functional consequences for cell division and/or mitochondrial inheritance. PMID:24567781

  7. Computer simulations reveal motor properties generating stable antiparallel microtubule interactions.

    PubMed

    Nédélec, François

    2002-09-16

    An aster of microtubules is a set of flexible polar filaments with dynamic plus ends that irradiate from a common location at which the minus ends of the filaments are found. Processive soluble oligomeric motor complexes can bind simultaneously to two microtubules, and thus exert forces between two asters. Using computer simulations, I have explored systematically the possible steady-state regimes reached by two asters under the action of various kinds of oligomeric motors. As expected, motor complexes can induce the asters to fuse, for example when the complexes consist only of minus end-directed motors, or to fully separate, when the motors are plus end directed. More surprisingly, complexes made of two motors of opposite directionalities can also lead to antiparallel interactions between overlapping microtubules that are stable and sustained, like those seen in mitotic spindle structures. This suggests that such heterocomplexes could have a significant biological role, if they exist in the cell.

  8. Tubulin carbamoylation. Functional amino groups in microtubule assembly.

    PubMed Central

    Mellado, W; Slebe, J C; Maccioni, R B

    1982-01-01

    The characteristics of the carbamoylation of pig brain tubulin were examined by using the modification conditions with cyanate described previously [Mellado, Slebe + Maccioni (1980) Biochem. Int. I, 584--590]. The carbamoylation reaction resulted in an inhibition of microtubule assembly, which was dependent on the concentration of the modifying agent. This tubulin modification appears to inhibit the growth of microtubules. The presence of GTP did not protect tubulin against this inhibition. Electron microscopy showed a marked decrease in the number of tubules after carbamoylation, but no alterations were observed in the microtubule morphology. The incorporation of KN14CO into alpha- and beta-subunits with similar kinetics was also shown, and the carbamoylated residues were identified as epsilon-N-carbamoyl-lysine residues. Images PLATE 1 Fig. 4. PMID:7115308

  9. Microtubule motors involved in nuclear movement during skeletal muscle differentiation.

    PubMed

    Gache, V; Gomes, E R; Cadot, B

    2017-04-01

    Nuclear positioning is a determining event in several cellular processes, such as fertilization, cell migration, and cell differentiation. The structure and function of muscle cells, which contain hundreds of nuclei, have been shown to rely in part on proper nuclear positioning. Remarkably, in the course of muscle differentiation, nuclear movements along the myotube axis might represent the event required for the even positioning of nuclei in the mature myofiber. Here we analyze nuclear behavior, time in motion, speed, and alignment during myotube differentiation and temporal interference of cytoskeletal microtubule-related motors. Using specific inhibitors, we find that nuclear movement and alignment are microtubule dependent, with 19 microtubule motor proteins implicated in at least one nuclear behavior. We further focus on Kif1c, Kif5b, kif9, kif21b, and Kif1a, which affect nuclear alignment. These results emphasize the different roles of molecular motors in particular mechanisms.

  10. Disruption of Microtubule Integrity Initiates Mitosis during CNS Repair

    PubMed Central

    Bossing, Torsten; Barros, Claudia S.; Fischer, Bettina; Russell, Steven; Shepherd, David

    2012-01-01

    Summary Mechanisms of CNS repair have vital medical implications. We show that traumatic injury to the ventral midline of the embryonic Drosophila CNS activates cell divisions to replace lost cells. A pilot screen analyzing transcriptomes of single cells during repair pointed to downregulation of the microtubule-stabilizing GTPase mitochondrial Rho (Miro) and upregulation of the Jun transcription factor Jun-related antigen (Jra). Ectopic Miro expression can prevent midline divisions after damage, whereas Miro depletion destabilizes cortical β-tubulin and increases divisions. Disruption of cortical microtubules, either by chemical depolymerization or by overexpression of monomeric tubulin, triggers ectopic mitosis in the midline and induces Jra expression. Conversely, loss of Jra renders midline cells unable to replace damaged siblings. Our data indicate that upon injury, the integrity of the microtubule cytoskeleton controls cell division in the CNS midline, triggering extra mitosis to replace lost cells. The conservation of the identified molecules suggests that similar mechanisms may operate in vertebrates. PMID:22841498

  11. Hyaluronan stimulates pancreatic cancer cell motility

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, Xiao-Bo; Kohi, Shiro; Koga, Atsuhiro; Hirata, Keiji; Sato, Norihiro

    2016-01-01

    Hyaluronan (HA) accumulates in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC), but functional significance of HA in the aggressive phenotype remains unknown. We used different models to investigate the effect of HA on PDAC cell motility by wound healing and transwell migration assay. Changes in cell motility were examined in 8 PDAC cell lines in response to inhibition of HA production by treatment with 4-methylumbelliferone (4-MU) and to promotion by treatment with 12-O-tetradecanoyl-phorbol-13-acetate (TPA) or by co-culture with tumor-derived stromal fibroblasts. We also investigated changes in cell motility by adding exogenous HA. Additionally, mRNA expressions of hyaluronan synthases and hyaluronidases were examined using real time RT-PCR. Inhibition of HA by 4-MU significantly decreased the migration, whereas promotion of HA by TPA or co-culture with tumor-derived fibroblasts significantly increased the migration of PDAC cells. The changes in HA production by these treatments tended to be associated with changes in HAS3 mRNA expression. Furthermore, addition of exogenous HA, especially low-molecular-weight HA, significantly increased the migration of PDAC cells. These findings suggest that HA stimulates PDAC cell migration and thus represents an ideal therapeutic target to prevent invasion and metastasis. PMID:26684359

  12. Effect of total laryngectomy on esophageal motility

    SciTech Connect

    Hanks, J.B.; Fisher, S.R.; Meyers, W.C.; Christian, K.C.; Postlethwait, R.W.; Jones, R.S.

    1981-01-01

    Total laryngectomy for cancer can result in dysphagia and altered esophageal motility. Manometric changes in the upper esophageal sphincter (UES), and in proximal and distal esophageal function have been reported. However, most studies have failed to take into account radiation therapy and appropriate controls. We selected ten male patients (54.3 +/- 1.9 yr) for longitudinal manometric evaluation prior to laryngectomy then at two weeks and again six months later. No patient received preoperative radiation therapy, had a previous history of esophageal surgery, or developed a postoperative wound infection or fistula. Seven of ten patients had positive nodes and received 6,000-6,600 rads postoperative radiation therapy. Preoperatively 4 of 10 patients complained of dysphagia which did not significantly change following surgery and radiation. Two of three patients who did not complain of dysphagia preoperatively and received radiation postoperatively developed dysphagia. No patient without dysphagia preoperatively who received no radiation therapy developed symptoms. Our studies show that laryngectomy causes alterations in the UES resting and peak pressures but not in the proximal or distal esophagus, or the lower esophageal sphincter. These data also imply radiation therapy may be associated with progressive alterations in motility and symptomatology. Further study regarding the effects of radiation on esophageal motility and function are urged.

  13. Motility of active fluid drops on surfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khoromskaia, Diana; Alexander, Gareth P.

    2015-12-01

    Drops of active liquid crystal have recently shown the ability to self-propel, which was associated with topological defects in the orientation of active filaments [Sanchez et al., Nature 491, 431 (2013), 10.1038/nature11591]. Here, we study the onset and different aspects of motility of a three-dimensional drop of active fluid on a planar surface. We analyze theoretically how motility is affected by orientation profiles with defects of various types and locations, by the shape of the drop, and by surface friction at the substrate. In the scope of a thin drop approximation, we derive exact expressions for the flow in the drop that is generated by a given orientation profile. The flow has a natural decomposition into terms that depend entirely on the geometrical properties of the orientation profile, i.e., its bend and splay, and a term coupling the orientation to the shape of the drop. We find that asymmetric splay or bend generates a directed bulk flow and enables the drop to move, with maximal speeds achieved when the splay or bend is induced by a topological defect in the interior of the drop. In motile drops the direction and speed of self-propulsion is controlled by friction at the substrate.

  14. Characterization of swarming motility in Citrobacter freundii.

    PubMed

    Cong, Yanguang; Wang, Jing; Chen, Zhijin; Xiong, Kun; Xu, Qiwang; Hu, Fuquan

    2011-04-01

    Bacterial swarming motility is a flagella-dependent translocation on the surface environment. It has received extensive attention as a population behavior involving numerous genes. Here, we report that Citrobacter freundii, an opportunistic pathogen, exhibits swarming movement on a solid medium surface with appropriate agar concentration. The swarming behavior of C. freundii was described in detail. Insertional mutagenesis with transposon Mini-Tn5 was carried out to discover genetic determinants related to the swarming of C. freundii. A number of swarming genes were identified, among which flhD, motA, motB, wzx, rfaL, rfaJ, rfbX, rfaG, rcsD, rcsC, gshB, fabF, dam, pgi, and rssB have been characterized previously in other species. In mutants related to lipopolysaccharide synthesis and RcsCDB signal system, a propensity to form poorly motile bacterial aggregates on the agar surface was observed. The aggregates hampered bacterial surface migration. In several mutants, the insertion sites were identified to be in the ORF of yqhC, yeeZ, CKO_03941, glgC, and ttrA, which have never been shown to be involved in swarming. Our results revealed several novel characteristics of swarming motility in C. freundii which are worthy of further study.

  15. Swimming Motility Reduces Deposition to Silica Surfaces

    SciTech Connect

    Lu, Nanxi; Massoudieh, Arash; Liang, Xiaomeng; Hu, Dehong; Kamai, Tamir; Ginn, Timothy R.; Zilles, Julie L.; Nguyen, Thanh H.

    2015-01-01

    The role of swimming motility on bacterial transport and fate in porous media was evaluated. We present microscopic evidence showing that strong swimming motility reduces attachment of Azotobacter vinelandii cells to silica surfaces. Applying global and cluster statistical analyses to microscopic videos taken under non-flow conditions, wild type, flagellated A. vinelandii strain DJ showed strong swimming ability with an average speed of 13.1 μm/s, DJ77 showed impaired swimming averaged at 8.7 μm/s, and both the non-flagellated JZ52 and chemically treated DJ cells were non-motile. Quantitative analyses of trajectories observed at different distances above the collector of a radial stagnation point flow cell (RSPF) revealed that both swimming and non-swimming cells moved with the flow when at a distance of at least 20 μm from the collector surface. Near the surface, DJ cells showed both horizontal and vertical movement diverging them from reaching surfaces, while chemically treated DJ cells moved with the flow to reach surfaces, suggesting that strong swimming reduced attachment. In agreement with the RSPF results, the deposition rates obtained for two-dimensional multiple-collector micromodels were also lowest for DJ, while DJ77 and JZ52 showed similar values. Strong swimming specifically reduced deposition on the upstream surfaces of the micromodel collectors.

  16. Gastrointestinal motility testing--a personal perspective.

    PubMed

    Quigley, E M

    1995-01-01

    The role of motility tests in the evaluation of some common disorders in which motility has been assumed to play a role is reviewed. Three separate areas, non-cardiac chest pain, constipation and the irritable bowel syndrome are discussed. In each area, considerable difficulty in the clinical definition of these disorders persists and presents a major obstacle to the evaluation of diagnostic tests. With regard to non-cardiac chest pain, it is apparent that gastro-oes