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

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

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Abstract

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

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)887-895
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Cell Biology
Volume180
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 10 2008

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Actin-Related Protein 2-3 Complex
Actin Cytoskeleton
Electron Microscope Tomography
Actins

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology

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Rouiller, I., Xu, X. P., Amann, K. J., Egile, C., Nickell, S., Nicastro, D., ... Hanein, D. (2008). The structural basis of actin filament branching by the Arp2/3 complex. Journal of Cell Biology, 180(5), 887-895. https://doi.org/10.1083/jcb.200709092

The structural basis of actin filament branching by the Arp2/3 complex. / Rouiller, Isabelle; Xu, Xiao Ping; Amann, Kurt J.; Egile, Coumaran; Nickell, Stephan; Nicastro, Daniela; Li, Rong; Pollard, Thomas D.; Volkmann, Niels; Hanein, Dorit.

In: Journal of Cell Biology, Vol. 180, No. 5, 10.03.2008, p. 887-895.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Rouiller, I, Xu, XP, Amann, KJ, Egile, C, Nickell, S, Nicastro, D, Li, R, Pollard, TD, Volkmann, N & Hanein, D 2008, 'The structural basis of actin filament branching by the Arp2/3 complex', Journal of Cell Biology, vol. 180, no. 5, pp. 887-895. https://doi.org/10.1083/jcb.200709092
Rouiller, Isabelle ; Xu, Xiao Ping ; Amann, Kurt J. ; Egile, Coumaran ; Nickell, Stephan ; Nicastro, Daniela ; Li, Rong ; Pollard, Thomas D. ; Volkmann, Niels ; Hanein, Dorit. / The structural basis of actin filament branching by the Arp2/3 complex. In: Journal of Cell Biology. 2008 ; Vol. 180, No. 5. pp. 887-895.
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