ResearchPad - microtubules https://www.researchpad.co Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[NMR resonance assignment and structure prediction of the C-terminal domain of the microtubule end-binding protein 3]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_15736 End-binding proteins (EBs) associate with the growing microtubule plus ends to regulate microtubule dynamics as well as the interaction with intracellular structures. EB3 contributes to pathological vascular leakage through interacting with the inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate receptor 3 (IP3R3), a calcium channel located at the endoplasmic reticulum membrane. The C-terminal domain of EB3 (residues 200–281) is functionally important for this interaction because it contains the effector binding sites, a prerequisite for EB3 activity and specificity. Structural data for this domain is limited. Here, we report the backbone chemical shift assignments for the human EB3 C-terminal domain and computationally explore its EB3 conformations. Backbone assignments, along with computational models, will allow future investigation of EB3 structural dynamics, interactions with effectors, and will facilitate the development of novel EB3 inhibitors.

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<![CDATA[The responses of lungs and adjacent lymph nodes in responding to Yersinia pestis infection: A transcriptomic study using a non-human primate model]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c78500ed5eed0c484007bfd

Initiation of treatment during the pre-symptomatic phase of Yersinia pestis (Y. pestis) infection is particularly critical. The rapid proliferation of Y. pestis typically couples with the manifestation of common flu-like early symptoms that often misguides the medical intervention. Our study used African green monkeys (AGM) that did not exhibit clear clinical symptoms for nearly two days after intranasal challenge with Y. pestis and succumbed within a day after showing the first signs of clinical symptoms. The lung, and mediastinal and submandibular lymph nodes (LN) accumulated significant Y. pestis colonization immediately after the intranasal challenge. Hence, organ-specific molecular investigations are deemed to be the key to elucidating mechanisms of the initial host response. Our previous study focused on the whole blood of AGM, and we found early perturbations in the ubiquitin-microtubule-mediated host defense. Altered expression of the genes present in ubiquitin and microtubule networks indicated an early suppression of these networks in the submandibular lymph nodes. In concert, the upstream toll-like receptor signaling and downstream NFκB signaling were inhibited at the multi-omics level. The inflammatory response was suppressed in the lungs, submandibular lymph nodes and mediastinal lymph nodes. We posited a causal chain of molecular mechanisms that indicated Y. pestis was probably able to impair host-mediated proteolysis activities and evade autophagosome capture by dysregulating both ubiquitin and microtubule networks in submandibular lymph nodes. Targeting these networks in a submandibular LN-specific and time-resolved fashion could be essential for development of the next generation therapeutics for pneumonic plague.

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<![CDATA[The type III intermediate filament vimentin regulates organelle distribution and modulates autophagy]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c5b52e2d5eed0c4842bd1ca

The cytoskeletal protein vimentin plays a key role in positioning of organelles within the cytosol and has been linked to the regulation of numerous cellular processes including autophagy, however, how vimentin regulates autophagy remains relatively unexplored. Here we report that inhibition of vimentin using the steroidal lactone Withaferin A (WFA) causes vimentin to aggregate, and this is associated with the relocalisation of organelles including autophagosomes and lysosomes from the cytosol to a juxtanuclear location. Vimentin inhibition causes autophagosomes to accumulate, and we demonstrate this results from modulation of mechanistic target of rapamycin (mTORC1) activity, and disruption of autophagosome-lysosome fusion. We suggest that vimentin plays a physiological role in autophagosome and lysosome positioning, thus identifying vimentin as a key factor in the regulation of mTORC1 and autophagy.

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<![CDATA[Role of tau N-terminal motif in the secretion of human tau by End Binding proteins]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c50c48cd5eed0c4845e88c1

For unknown reasons, humans appear to be particular susceptible to developing tau pathology leading to neurodegeneration. Transgenic mice are still undoubtedly the most popular and extensively used animal models for studying Alzheimer’s disease and other tauopathies. While these murine models generally overexpress human tau in the mouse brain or specific brain regions, there are differences between endogenous mouse tau and human tau protein. Among them, a main difference between human and mouse tau is the presence of a short motif spanning residues 18 to 28 in the human tau protein that is missing in murine tau, and which could be at least partially responsible for that different susceptibility across species. Here we report novel data using affinity chromatography analysis indicating that the sequence containing human tau residues 18 to 28 acts a binding motif for End Binding proteins and that this interaction could facilitate tau secretion to the extracellular space.

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<![CDATA[EBNA3C facilitates RASSF1A downregulation through ubiquitin-mediated degradation and promoter hypermethylation to drive B-cell proliferation]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c3d00ded5eed0c484036313

EBV latent antigen 3C (EBNA3C) is essential for EBV-induced primary B-cell transformation. Infection by EBV induces hypermethylation of a number of tumor suppressor genes, which contributes to the development of human cancers. The Ras association domain family isoform 1A (RASSF1A) is a cellular tumor suppressor, which regulates a broad range of cellular functions, including apoptosis, cell-cycle arrest, mitotic arrest, and migration. However, the expression of RASSF1A is lost in many human cancers by epigenetic silencing. In the present study, we showed that EBNA3C promoted B-cell transformation by specifically suppressing the expression of RASSF1A. EBNA3C directly interacted with RASSF1A and induced RASSF1A degradation via the ubiquitin-proteasome-dependent pathway. SCFSkp2, an E3-ubiquitin ligase, was recruited by EBNA3C to enhance RASSF1A degradation. Moreover, EBNA3C decreased the transcriptional activity of RASSF1A promoter by enhancing its methylation through EBNA3C-mediated modulation of DNMTs expression. EBNA3C also inhibited RASSF1A-mediated cell apoptosis, disrupted RASSF1A-mediated microtubule and chromosomal stability, and promoted cell proliferation by upregulating Cyclin D1 and Cyclin E expression. Our data provides new details, which sheds light on additional mechanisms by which EBNA3C can induce B-cell transformation. This will also facilitate the development of novel therapeutic approaches through targeting of the RASSF1A pathway.

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<![CDATA[Spinocerebellar ataxia type 11-associated alleles of Ttbk2 dominantly interfere with ciliogenesis and cilium stability]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c181337d5eed0c484774843

Spinocerebellar ataxia type 11 (SCA11) is a rare, dominantly inherited human ataxia characterized by atrophy of Purkinje neurons in the cerebellum. SCA11 is caused by mutations in the gene encoding the Serine/Threonine kinase Tau tubulin kinase 2 (TTBK2) that result in premature truncations of the protein. We previously showed that TTBK2 is a key regulator of the assembly of primary cilia in vivo. However, the mechanisms by which the SCA11-associated mutations disrupt TTBK2 function, and whether they interfere with ciliogenesis were unknown. In this work, we present evidence that SCA11-associated mutations are dominant negative alleles and that the resulting truncated protein (TTBK2SCA11) interferes with the function of full length TTBK2 in mediating ciliogenesis. A Ttbk2 allelic series revealed that upon partial reduction of full length TTBK2 function, TTBK2SCA11 can interfere with the activity of the residual wild-type protein to decrease cilia number and interrupt cilia-dependent Sonic hedgehog (SHH) signaling. Our studies have also revealed new functions for TTBK2 after cilia initiation in the control of cilia length, trafficking of a subset of SHH pathway components, including Smoothened (SMO), and cilia stability. These studies provide a molecular foundation to understand the cellular and molecular pathogenesis of human SCA11, and help account for the link between ciliary dysfunction and neurodegenerative diseases.

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<![CDATA[Evidence for a role of spindle matrix formation in cell cycle progression by antibody perturbation]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c084217d5eed0c484fcbbc4

In Drosophila it has recently been demonstrated that a spindle matrix in the form of a membrane-less macromolecular assembly embeds the microtubule-based spindle apparatus. In addition, two of its constituents, Megator and Chromator, were shown to function as spatial regulators of spindle checkpoint proteins. However, whether the spindle matrix plays a wider functional role in spatially regulating cell cycle progression factors was unknown. Here using a live imaging approach we provide evidence that a number of key cell cycle proteins such as Cyclin B, Polo, and Ran co-localize with the spindle matrix during mitosis. Furthermore, prevention of spindle matrix formation by injection of a function blocking antibody against the spindle matrix protein Chromator results in cell cycle arrest prior to nuclear envelope breakdown. In such embryos the spatial dynamics of Polo and Cyclin B enrichment at the nuclear rim and kinetochores is abrogated and Polo is not imported into the nucleus. This is in contrast to colchicine-arrested embryos where the wild-type dynamics of these proteins are maintained. Taken together these results suggest that spindle matrix formation may be a general requirement for the localization and proper dynamics of cell cycle factors promoting signaling events leading to cell cycle progression.

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<![CDATA[Mechanical positioning of multiple nuclei in muscle cells]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5b28b9fb463d7e156497703c

Many types of large cells have multiple nuclei. In skeletal muscle fibers, the nuclei are distributed along the cell to maximize their internuclear distances. This myonuclear positioning is crucial for cell function. Although microtubules, microtubule associated proteins, and motors have been implicated, mechanisms responsible for myonuclear positioning remain unclear. We used a combination of rough interacting particle and detailed agent-based modeling to examine computationally the hypothesis that a force balance generated by microtubules positions the muscle nuclei. Rather than assuming the nature and identity of the forces, we simulated various types of forces between the pairs of nuclei and between the nuclei and cell boundary to position the myonuclei according to the laws of mechanics. We started with a large number of potential interacting particle models and computationally screened these models for their ability to fit biological data on nuclear positions in hundreds of Drosophila larval muscle cells. This reverse engineering approach resulted in a small number of feasible models, the one with the best fit suggests that the nuclei repel each other and the cell boundary with forces that decrease with distance. The model makes nontrivial predictions about the increased nuclear density near the cell poles, the zigzag patterns of the nuclear positions in wider cells, and about correlations between the cell width and elongated nuclear shapes, all of which we confirm by image analysis of the biological data. We support the predictions of the interacting particle model with simulations of an agent-based mechanical model. Taken together, our data suggest that microtubules growing from nuclear envelopes push on the neighboring nuclei and the cell boundaries, which is sufficient to establish the nearly-uniform nuclear spreading observed in muscle fibers.

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<![CDATA[The fission yeast SPB component Dms1 is required to initiate forespore membrane formation and maintain meiotic SPB components]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5b28b13d463d7e116be9c9a8

The spindle pole body (SPB) plays a central role in spore plasma membrane formation in addition to its recognized role in microtubule organization. During meiosis, a biomembrane called the forespore membrane (FSM) is newly formed at the SPB. Although several SPB proteins essential for the initiation of FSM formation (meiotic SPB components) have been identified, the molecular mechanism is still unknown. Here, we report the isolation and functional characterization of Dms1 as a component of the SPB. We show that FSM formation does not initiate in dms1Δ cells. Dms1 protein is constitutively expressed throughout the life cycle and localizes to the SPB and the nuclear envelope. The predicted Dms1 protein has a transmembrane domain, which is required for correct localization at the SPB. Dms1 is essential for the proper localization of three meiotic SPB components, Spo15, Spo2, and Spo13, but these components do not affect localization of Dms1. Collectively, these results suggest that Dms1 anchors these meiotic SPB components to the SPB, thereby facilitating the initiation of FSM formation.

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<![CDATA[Microtubules in Bacteria: Ancient Tubulins Build a Five-Protofilament Homolog of the Eukaryotic Cytoskeleton]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db0fab0ee8fa60bcbb67

The unequivocal identification of microtubules in bacteria throws light on the evolution of modern eukaryotic microtubules from a primordial structure.

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<![CDATA[HIV-1 and M-PMV RNA Nuclear Export Elements Program Viral Genomes for Distinct Cytoplasmic Trafficking Behaviors]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db08ab0ee8fa60bc9117

Retroviruses encode cis-acting RNA nuclear export elements that override nuclear retention of intron-containing viral mRNAs including the full-length, unspliced genomic RNAs (gRNAs) packaged into assembling virions. The HIV-1 Rev-response element (RRE) recruits the cellular nuclear export receptor CRM1 (also known as exportin-1/XPO1) using the viral protein Rev, while simple retroviruses encode constitutive transport elements (CTEs) that directly recruit components of the NXF1(Tap)/NXT1(p15) mRNA nuclear export machinery. How gRNA nuclear export is linked to trafficking machineries in the cytoplasm upstream of virus particle assembly is unknown. Here we used long-term (>24 h), multicolor live cell imaging to directly visualize HIV-1 gRNA nuclear export, translation, cytoplasmic trafficking, and virus particle production in single cells. We show that the HIV-1 RRE regulates unique, en masse, Rev- and CRM1-dependent “burst-like” transitions of mRNAs from the nucleus to flood the cytoplasm in a non-localized fashion. By contrast, the CTE derived from Mason-Pfizer monkey virus (M-PMV) links gRNAs to microtubules in the cytoplasm, driving them to cluster markedly to the centrosome that forms the pericentriolar core of the microtubule-organizing center (MTOC). Adding each export element to selected heterologous mRNAs was sufficient to confer each distinct export behavior, as was directing Rev/CRM1 or NXF1/NXT1 transport modules to mRNAs using a site-specific RNA tethering strategy. Moreover, multiple CTEs per transcript enhanced MTOC targeting, suggesting that a cooperative mechanism links NXF1/NXT1 to microtubules. Combined, these results reveal striking, unexpected features of retroviral gRNA nucleocytoplasmic transport and demonstrate roles for mRNA export elements that extend beyond nuclear pores to impact gRNA distribution in the cytoplasm.

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<![CDATA[Genome-wide association study provides strong evidence of genes affecting the reproductive performance of Nellore beef cows]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db5cab0ee8fa60be0110

Reproductive traits are economically important for beef cattle production; however, these traits are still a bottleneck in indicine cattle since these animals typically reach puberty at older ages when compared to taurine breeds. In addition, reproductive traits are complex phenotypes, i.e., they are controlled by both the environment and many small-effect genes involved in different pathways. In this study, we conducted genome-wide association study (GWAS) and functional analyses to identify important genes and pathways associated with heifer rebreeding (HR) and with the number of calvings at 53 months of age (NC53) in Nellore cows. A total of 142,878 and 244,311 phenotypes for HR and NC53, respectively, and 2,925 animals genotyped with the Illumina Bovine HD panel (Illumina®, San Diego, CA, USA) were used in GWAS applying the weighted single-step GBLUP (WssGBLUP) method. Several genes associated with reproductive events were detected in the 20 most important 1Mb windows for both traits. Significant pathways for HR and NC53 were associated with lipid metabolism and immune processes, respectively. MHC class II genes, detected on chromosome 23 (window 25-26Mb) for NC53, were significantly associated with pregnancy success of Nellore cows. These genes have been proved previously to be associated with reproductive traits such as mate choice in other breeds and species. Our results suggest that genes associated with the reproductive traits HR and NC53 may be involved in embryo development in mammalian species. Furthermore, some genes associated with mate choice may affect pregnancy success in Nellore cattle.

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<![CDATA[GTSE1 Is a Microtubule Plus-End Tracking Protein That Regulates EB1-Dependent Cell Migration]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989dabdab0ee8fa60baf403

The regulation of cell migration is a highly complex process that is often compromised when cancer cells become metastatic. The microtubule cytoskeleton is necessary for cell migration, but how microtubules and microtubule-associated proteins regulate multiple pathways promoting cell migration remains unclear. Microtubule plus-end binding proteins (+TIPs) are emerging as important players in many cellular functions, including cell migration. Here we identify a +TIP, GTSE1, that promotes cell migration. GTSE1 accumulates at growing microtubule plus ends through interaction with the EB1+TIP. The EB1-dependent +TIP activity of GTSE1 is required for cell migration, as well as for microtubule-dependent disassembly of focal adhesions. GTSE1 protein levels determine the migratory capacity of both nontransformed and breast cancer cell lines. In breast cancers, increased GTSE1 expression correlates with invasive potential, tumor stage, and time to distant metastasis, suggesting that misregulation of GTSE1 expression could be associated with increased invasive potential.

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<![CDATA[Specific β-Tubulin Isotypes Can Functionally Enhance or Diminish Epothilone B Sensitivity in Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Cells]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db30ab0ee8fa60bd1f63

Epothilones are a new class of microtubule stabilizing agents with promising preclinical and clinical activity. Their cellular target is β-tubulin and factors influencing intrinsic sensitivity to epothilones are not well understood. In this study, the functional significance of specific β-tubulin isotypes in intrinsic sensitivity to epothilone B was investigated using siRNA gene knockdown against βII-, βIII- or βIVb-tubulins in two independent non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cell lines, NCI-H460 and Calu-6. Drug-treated clonogenic assays showed that sensitivity to epothilone B was not altered following knockdown of βII-tubulin in both NSCLC cell lines. In contrast, knockdown of βIII-tubulin significantly increased sensitivity to epothilone B. Interestingly, βIVb-tubulin knockdowns were significantly less sensitive to epothilone B, compared to mock- and control siRNA cells. Cell cycle analysis of βIII-tubulin knockdown cells showed a higher percentage of cell death with epothilone B concentrations as low as 0.5 nM. In contrast, βIVb-tubulin knockdown cells displayed a decrease in epothilone B-induced G2-M cell cycle accumulation compared to control siRNA cells. Importantly, βIII-tubulin knockdowns displayed a significant dose-dependent increase in the percentage of apoptotic cells upon treatment with epothilone B, as detected using caspase 3/7 activity and Annexin-V staining. Higher concentrations of epothilone B were required to induce apoptosis in the βIVb-tubulin knockdowns compared to control siRNA, highlighting a potential mechanism underlying decreased sensitivity to this agent. This study demonstrates that specific β-tubulin isotypes can influence sensitivity to epothilone B and may influence differential sensitivity to this promising new agent.

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<![CDATA[Cryo Electron Tomography of Herpes Simplex Virus during Axonal Transport and Secondary Envelopment in Primary Neurons]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da69ab0ee8fa60b9293d

During herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV1) egress in neurons, viral particles travel from the neuronal cell body along the axon towards the synapse. Whether HSV1 particles are transported as enveloped virions as proposed by the ‘married’ model or as non-enveloped capsids suggested by the ‘separate’ model is controversial. Specific viral proteins may form a recruitment platform for microtubule motors that catalyze such transport. However, their subviral location has remained elusive. Here we established a system to analyze herpesvirus egress by cryo electron tomography. At 16 h post infection, we observed intra-axonal transport of progeny HSV1 viral particles in dissociated hippocampal neurons by live-cell fluorescence microscopy. Cryo electron tomography of frozen-hydrated neurons revealed that most egressing capsids were transported independently of the viral envelope. Unexpectedly, we found not only DNA-containing capsids (cytosolic C-capsids), but also capsids lacking DNA (cytosolic A-/B-capsids) in mid-axon regions. Subvolume averaging revealed lower amounts of tegument on cytosolic A-/B-capsids than on C-capsids. Nevertheless, all capsid types underwent active axonal transport. Therefore, even few tegument proteins on the capsid vertices seemed to suffice for transport. Secondary envelopment of capsids was observed at axon terminals. On their luminal face, the enveloping vesicles were studded with typical glycoprotein-like spikes. Furthermore, we noted an accretion of tegument density at the concave cytosolic face of the vesicle membrane in close proximity to the capsids. Three-dimensional analysis revealed that these assembly sites lacked cytoskeletal elements, but that filamentous actin surrounded them and formed an assembly compartment. Our data support the ‘separate model’ for HSV1 egress, i.e. progeny herpes viruses being transported along axons as subassemblies and not as complete virions within transport vesicles.

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<![CDATA[May I check your cap?]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989daa8ab0ee8fa60ba8614

Modernizing a classic technique to study microtubules has revealed that the stability of a microtubule is related to its growth rate.

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<![CDATA[Diffusion of Myosin V on Microtubules: A Fine-Tuned Interaction for Which E-Hooks Are Dispensable]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db00ab0ee8fa60bc630b

Organelle transport in eukaryotes employs both microtubule and actin tracks to deliver cargo effectively to their destinations, but the question of how the two systems cooperate is still largely unanswered. Recently, in vitro studies revealed that the actin-based processive motor myosin V also binds to, and diffuses along microtubules. This biophysical trick enables cells to exploit both tracks for the same transport process without switching motors. The detailed mechanisms underlying this behavior remain to be solved. By means of single molecule Total Internal Reflection Microscopy (TIRFM), we show here that electrostatic tethering between the positively charged loop 2 and the negatively charged C-terminal E-hooks of microtubules is dispensable. Furthermore, our data indicate that in addition to charge-charge interactions, other interaction forces such as non-ionic attraction might account for myosin V diffusion. These findings provide evidence for a novel way of myosin tethering to microtubules that does not interfere with other E-hook-dependent processes.

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<![CDATA[Structural Basis of Microtubule Destabilization by Potent Auristatin Anti-Mitotics]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9f9ab0ee8fa60b71758

The auristatin class of microtubule destabilizers are highly potent cytotoxic agents against several cancer cell types when delivered as antibody drug conjugates. Here we describe the high resolution structures of tubulin in complex with both monomethyl auristatin E and F and unambiguously define the trans-configuration of both ligands at the Val-Dil amide bond in their tubulin bound state. Moreover, we illustrate how peptidic vinca-site agents carrying terminal carboxylate residues may exploit an observed extended hydrogen bond network with the M-loop Arg278 to greatly improve the affinity of the corresponding analogs and to maintain the M-loop in an incompatible conformation for productive lateral tubulin-tubulin contacts in microtubules. Our results highlight a potential, previously undescribed molecular mechanism by which peptidic vinca-site agents maintain unparalleled potency as microtubule-destabilizing agents.

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<![CDATA[Kank Is an EB1 Interacting Protein that Localises to Muscle-Tendon Attachment Sites in Drosophila]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da87ab0ee8fa60b9cc17

Little is known about how microtubules are regulated in different cell types during development. EB1 plays a central role in the regulation of microtubule plus ends. It directly binds to microtubule plus ends and recruits proteins which regulate microtubule dynamics and behaviour. We report the identification of Kank, the sole Drosophila orthologue of human Kank proteins, as an EB1 interactor that predominantly localises to embryonic attachment sites between muscle and tendon cells. Human Kank1 was identified as a tumour suppressor and has documented roles in actin regulation and cell polarity in cultured mammalian cells. We found that Drosophila Kank binds EB1 directly and this interaction is essential for Kank localisation to microtubule plus ends in cultured cells. Kank protein is expressed throughout fly development and increases during embryogenesis. In late embryos, it accumulates to sites of attachment between muscle and epidermal cells. A kank deletion mutant was generated. We found that the mutant is viable and fertile without noticeable defects. Further analysis showed that Kank is dispensable for muscle function in larvae. This is in sharp contrast to C. elegans in which the Kank orthologue VAB-19 is required for development by stabilising attachment structures between muscle and epidermal cells.

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<![CDATA[Centromere Protein (CENP)-W Interacts with Heterogeneous Nuclear Ribonucleoprotein (hnRNP) U and May Contribute to Kinetochore-Microtubule Attachment in Mitotic Cells]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da51ab0ee8fa60b8de02

Background

Recent studies have shown that heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoprotein U (hnRNP U), a component of the hnRNP complex, contributes to stabilize the kinetochore-microtubule interaction during mitosis. CENP-W was identified as an inner centromere component that plays crucial roles in the formation of a functional kinetochore complex.

Results

We report that hnRNP U interacts with CENP-W, and the interaction between hnRNP U and CENP-W mutually increased each other’s protein stability by inhibiting the proteasome-mediated degradation. Further, their co-localization was observed chiefly in the nuclear matrix region and at the microtubule-kinetochore interface during interphase and mitosis, respectively. Both microtubule-stabilizing and microtubule-destabilizing agents significantly decreased the protein stability of CENP-W. Furthermore, loss of microtubules and defects in microtubule organization were observed in CENP-W-depleted cells.

Conclusion

Our data imply that CENP-W plays an important role in the attachment and interaction between microtubules and kinetochore during mitosis.

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