Unified control of amoeboid pseudopod extension in multiple organisms by branched F-actin in the front and parallel F-actin/myosin in the cortex

Peter J. M. van Haastert*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
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Abstract

The trajectory of moving eukaryotic cells depends on the kinetics and direction of extending pseudopods. The direction of pseudopods has been well studied to unravel mechanisms for chemotaxis, wound healing and inflammation. However, the kinetics of pseudopod extension-when and why do pseudopods start and stop- is equally important, but is largely unknown. Here the START and STOP of about 4000 pseudopods was determined in four different species, at four conditions and in nine mutants (fast amoeboids Dictyostelium and neutrophils, slow mesenchymal stem cells, and fungus B.d. chytrid with pseudopod and a flagellum). The START of a first pseudopod is a random event with a probability that is species-specific (23%/s for neutrophils). In all species and conditions, the START of a second pseudopod is strongly inhibited by the extending first pseudopod, which depends on parallel filamentous actin/myosin in the cell cortex. Pseudopods extend at a constant rate by polymerization of branched F-actin at the pseudopod tip, which requires the Scar complex. The STOP of pseudopod extension is induced by multiple inhibitory processes that evolve during pseudopod extension and mainly depend on the increasing size of the pseudopod. Surprisingly, no differences in pseudopod kinetics are detectable between polarized, unpolarized or chemotactic cells, and also not between different species except for small differences in numerical values. This suggests that the analysis has uncovered the fundament of cell movement with distinct roles for stimulatory branched F-actin in the protrusion and inhibitory parallel F-actin in the contractile cortex.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0243442
Number of pages30
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume15
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 9-Dec-2020

Keywords

  • HETEROTRIMERIC G-PROTEINS
  • CELL-MIGRATION
  • ARP2/3 COMPLEX
  • LEADING-EDGE
  • EUKARYOTIC CHEMOTAXIS
  • THERMAL FLUCTUATIONS
  • SHALLOW GRADIENTS
  • BINDING PROTEIN
  • MOTILITY DRIVEN
  • RAS ACTIVATION

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