PMID: 8548814Jan 12, 1996Paper

Reconstitution in vitro of the motile apparatus from the amoeboid sperm of Ascaris shows that filament assembly and bundling move membranes

Cell
J ItalianoC A Fontana

Abstract

We have developed an in vitro motility system from Ascaris sperm, unique amoeboid cells that use filament arrays composed of major sperm protein (MSP) instead of an actin-based apparatus for locomotion. Addition of ATP to sperm extracts induces formation of fibers approximately 2 microns in diameter. These fibers display the key features of the MSP cytoskeleton in vivo. Each fiber consists of a meshwork of MSP filaments and has at one end a vesicle derived from the plasma membrane at the leading edge of the cell. Fiber growth is due to filament assembly at the vesicle; thus, fiber elongation results in vesicle translocation. This in vitro system demonstrates directly that localized polymerization and bundling of filaments can move membranes and provides a powerful assay for evaluating the molecular mechanism of amoeboid cell motility.

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