Editors' ChoiceCytoskeleton

Microtubules Deliver the Message

Science's STKE  05 Feb 2002:
Vol. 2002, Issue 118, pp. tw60-TW60
DOI: 10.1126/stke.2002.118.tw60

Disruption of microtubules (MTs) causes cells to become less morphologically polarized and causes focal adhesions to enlarge and merge together. Kyrlyshkina et al. inhibited the function of the plus-end directed MT motor kinesin in Xenopus fibroblasts and reproduced the phenotypes associated with MT disruption by treatment of cells with nocadozole. Inhibition of the motor dynein directed to the minus-end did not affect cell polarity or focal adhesion distribution or size. The MT network was intact and was able to reach adhesion complexes in cells treated with kinesin motor-blocking agents. Krylyshkina et al. suggest that the MTs deliver a regulator of the actin cytoskeleton to focal adhesion sites through a kinesin-dependent process.

O. Krylyshkina, I. Kaverina, W. Kranewitter, W. Steffen, M. C. Alonso, R. A. Cross, J. V. Small, Modulation of substrate adhesion dynamics via microtubule targeting requires kinesin-1. J. Cell Biol. 156, 349-359 (2002). [Abstract] [Full Text]