Organization of microtubules in centrosome-free cytoplasm

Mark A Mc Niven, K. R. Porter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

48 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Many different cell types possess microtubule patterns which appear to be polarized and oriented, in part, by cytoplasmic factors not directly associated with a centrosome. Recently, we demonstrated that cytoplasmic extensions ('arms') of teleost melanophores will reorganize their microtubule population outward from their centers after surgical isolation (McNiven, M.A., M. Wang, and K.R. Porter. 1984. Cell. 37:753-765). In the study reported here, we examine microtubule dynamics within the centrosome-free fragments and find that, after severing, microtubule reorganization is initiated at the proximal (cut) end of an arm and migrates distally with the aggregated pigment mass until it becomes permanently positioned at the middle of the arm. Computer-aided image analysis demonstrates that this middle position is located at the arm centroid, implicating the action of a cytoplasmic gel in this process. Morphological studies of arms devoid of pigment reveal that microtubules do not emanate from a single site or structure within the centroid area, but from a more generalized region. Taken together, these findings suggest that factors distributed throughout cytoplasm participate in microtubule assembly and organization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1593-1605
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Cell Biology
Volume106
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1988
Externally publishedYes

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Centrosome
Microtubules
Cytoplasm
Melanophores
Gels
Population

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology

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Organization of microtubules in centrosome-free cytoplasm. / Mc Niven, Mark A; Porter, K. R.

In: Journal of Cell Biology, Vol. 106, No. 5, 1988, p. 1593-1605.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Mc Niven, Mark A ; Porter, K. R. / Organization of microtubules in centrosome-free cytoplasm. In: Journal of Cell Biology. 1988 ; Vol. 106, No. 5. pp. 1593-1605.
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