skip to main content


Title: The WAVE complex associates with sites of saddle membrane curvature

How local interactions of actin regulators yield large-scale organization of cell shape and movement is not well understood. Here we investigate how the WAVE complex organizes sheet-like lamellipodia. Using super-resolution microscopy, we find that the WAVE complex forms actin-independent 230-nm-wide rings that localize to regions of saddle membrane curvature. This pattern of enrichment could explain several emergent cell behaviors, such as expanding and self-straightening lamellipodia and the ability of endothelial cells to recognize and seal transcellular holes. The WAVE complex recruits IRSp53 to sites of saddle curvature but does not depend on IRSp53 for its own localization. Although the WAVE complex stimulates actin nucleation via the Arp2/3 complex, sheet-like protrusions are still observed in ARP2-null, but not WAVE complex-null, cells. Therefore, the WAVE complex has additional roles in cell morphogenesis beyond Arp2/3 complex activation. Our work defines organizing principles of the WAVE complex lamellipodial template and suggests how feedback between cell shape and actin regulators instructs cell morphogenesis.

 
more » « less
Award ID(s):
2019598
NSF-PAR ID:
10476633
Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ;
Publisher / Repository:
Journal of Cell Biology
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Journal of Cell Biology
Volume:
220
Issue:
8
ISSN:
0021-9525
Page Range / eLocation ID:
e202003086
Subject(s) / Keyword(s):
Actin cytoskeleton Cell Polarity Cell Motility Wave Complex Morphogenesis Cell Shape
Format(s):
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
More Like this
  1. Drosophila CG10915 is an uncharacterized protein coding gene with sequence similarity to human Cortactin Binding Protein 2 (CTTNBP2) and Cortactin Binding Protein 2 N-terminal-like (CTTNBP2NL). Here, we have named this gene Nausicaa (naus) and characterize it through a combination of quantitative live-cell total internal reflection fluorescence (TIRF) microscopy, electron microscopy, RNAi depletion, and genetics. We found that Naus co-localizes with F-actin and Cortactin in the lamellipodia of Drosophila S2R+ and D25c2 cells and this localization is lost following Cortactin or Arp2/3 depletion or by mutations that disrupt a conserved proline patch found in its mammalian homologs. Using Permeabilization Activated Reduction in Fluorescence (PARF) and Fluorescence Recovery after Photo-bleaching (FRAP), we find that depletion of Cortactin alters Naus dynamics leading to a decrease in its half-life. Furthermore, we discovered that Naus depletion in S2R+ cells led to a decrease in actin retrograde flow and a lamellipodia characterized by long, unbranched filaments. We demonstrate that these alterations to the dynamics and underlying actin architecture also affect D25c2 cell migration and decrease arborization in Drosophila neurons. We present the hypothesis that Naus functions to slow Cortactin's disassociation from Arp2/3 nucleated branch junctions, thereby increasing both branch nucleation and junction stability.

     
    more » « less
  2. Epithelial cells assemble specialized actomyosin structures at E-Cadherin–based cell–cell junctions, and the force exerted drives cell shape change during morphogenesis. The mechanisms that build this supramolecular actomyosin structure remain unclear. We used ZO-knockdown MDCK cells, which assemble a robust, polarized, and highly organized actomyosin cytoskeleton at the zonula adherens, combining genetic and pharmacologic approaches with superresolution microscopy to define molecular machines required. To our surprise, inhibiting individual actin assembly pathways (Arp2/3, formins, or Ena/VASP) did not prevent or delay assembly of this polarized actomyosin structure. Instead, as junctions matured, micron-scale supramolecular myosin arrays assembled, with aligned stacks of myosin filaments adjacent to the apical membrane, overlying disorganized actin filaments. This suggested that myosin arrays might bundle actin at mature junctions. Consistent with this idea, inhibiting ROCK or myosin ATPase disrupted myosin localization/organization and prevented actin bundling and polarization. We obtained similar results in Caco-2 cells. These results suggest a novel role for myosin self-assembly, helping drive actin organization to facilitate cell shape change.

     
    more » « less
  3. After eukaryotic fertilization, gamete nuclei migrate to fuse parental genomes in order to initiate development of the next generation. In most animals, microtubules control female and male pronuclear migration in the zygote. Flowering plants, on the other hand, have evolved actin filament (F-actin)-based sperm nuclear migration systems for karyogamy. Flowering plants have also evolved a unique double-fertilization process: two female gametophytic cells, the egg and central cells, are each fertilized by a sperm cell. The molecular and cellular mechanisms of how flowering plants utilize and control F-actin for double-fertilization events are largely unknown. Using confocal microscopy live-cell imaging with a combination of pharmacological and genetic approaches, we identified factors involved in F-actin dynamics and sperm nuclear migration inArabidopsis thaliana(Arabidopsis) andNicotiana tabacum(tobacco). We demonstrate that the F-actin regulator, SCAR2, but not the ARP2/3 protein complex, controls the coordinated active F-actin movement. These results imply that an ARP2/3-independent WAVE/SCAR-signaling pathway regulates F-actin dynamics in female gametophytic cells for fertilization. We also identify that the class XI myosin XI-G controls active F-actin movement in theArabidopsiscentral cell. XI-G is not a simple transporter, moving cargos along F-actin, but can generate forces that control the dynamic movement of F-actin for fertilization. Our results provide insights into the mechanisms that control gamete nuclear migration and reveal regulatory pathways for dynamic F-actin movement in flowering plants.

     
    more » « less
  4. Eukaryotic cells contain branched actin networks that are essential for endocytosis, motility, and other key cellular processes. These networks, which are formed by filamentous actin and the Arp2/3 complex, must subsequently be debranched to allow network remodeling and to recycle the Arp2/3 complex. Debranching appears to be catalyzed by two different members of the actin depolymerizing factor homology protein family: cofilin and glial maturation factor (GMF). However, their mechanisms of debranching are only partially understood. Here, we used single-molecule fluorescence imaging of Arp2/3 complex and actin filaments under physiological ionic conditions to observe debranching by GMF and cofilin. We demonstrate that cofilin, like GMF, is an authentic debrancher independent of its filament-severing activity and that the debranching activities of the two proteins are additive. While GMF binds directly to the Arp2/3 complex, cofilin selectively accumulates on branch–junction daughter filaments in tropomyosin-decorated networks just prior to debranching events. Quantitative comparison of debranching rates with the known kinetics of cofilin–actin binding suggests that cofilin occupancy of a particular single actin site at the branch junction is sufficient to trigger debranching. In rare cases in which the order of departure could be resolved during GMF- or cofilin-induced debranching, the Arp2/3 complex left the branch junction bound to the pointed end of the daughter filament, suggesting that both GMF and cofilin can work by destabilizing the mother filament–Arp2/3 complex interface. Taken together, these observations suggest that GMF and cofilin promote debranching by distinct yet complementary mechanisms.

     
    more » « less
  5. Abstract

    Formation and turnover of branched actin networks underlies cell migration and other essential force-driven processes. Type I nucleation-promoting factors (NPFs) such as WASP recruit actin monomers to Arp2/3 complex to stimulate nucleation. In contrast, mechanisms of type II NPFs such as Abp1 (also known as HIP55 and Drebrin-like protein) are less well understood. Here, we use single-molecule analysis to investigate yeast Abp1 effects on Arp2/3 complex, and find that Abp1 strongly enhances Arp2/3-dependent branch nucleation by stabilizing Arp2/3 on sides of mother filaments. Abp1 binds dynamically to filament sides, with sub-second lifetimes, yet associates stably with branch junctions. Further, we uncover a role for Abp1 in protecting filament junctions from GMF-induced debranching by competing with GMF for Arp2/3 binding. These data, combined with EM structures of Abp1 dimers bound to Arp2/3 complex in two different conformations, expand our mechanistic understanding of type II NPFs.

     
    more » « less