Thursday, June 23, 2016

An evolutionarily conserved SSNA1/DIP13 homologue is a component of both basal and apical complexes of Toxoplasma gondii

2016 Jun 21;6:27809. doi: 10.1038/srep27809.

Microtubule-based cytoskeletal structures have fundamental roles in several essential eukaryotic processes, including transport of intracellular constituents as well as ciliary and flagellar mobility. Temporal and spatial organisation of microtubules is determined by microtubule organising centers and a number of appendages and accessory proteins. Members of the SSNA1/DIP13 family are coiled coil proteins that are known to localise to microtubular structures like centrosomes and flagella, but are otherwise poorly characterised. We have identified a homologue of SSNA1/DIP13 in the parasitic protist Toxoplasma gondii and found it localises to parasite-specific cytoskeletal structures: the conoid in the apical complex of mature and dividing cells, and the basal complex in elongating daughter cells during cell division. This protein is dispensable for parasite growth in vitro. However, quite remarkably, this coiled coil protein is able to self-associate into higher order structures both in vitro and in vivo, and its overexpression is impairing parasite division.
[PubMed - in process]

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