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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Mammalian twinfilin sequesters ADP-G-actin and caps filament barbed ends: implications in motility.

Twinfilins are conserved actin-binding proteins composed of two actin depolymerizing factor homology (ADF-H) domains. Twinfilins are involved in diverse morphological and motile processes, but their mechanism of action has not been elucidated. Here, we show that mammalian twinfilin both sequesters ADP-G-actin and caps filament barbed ends with preferential affinity for ADP-bound ends. Twinfilin replaces capping protein and promotes motility of N-WASP functionalized beads in a biomimetic motility assay, indicating that the capping activity supports twinfilin's function in motility. Consistently, in vivo twinfilin localizes to actin tails of propelling endosomes. The ADP-actin-sequestering activity cooperates with the filament capping activity of twinfilin to finely regulate motility due to processive filament assembly catalyzed by formin-functionalized beads. The isolated ADF-H domains do not cap barbed ends nor promote motility, but sequester ADP-actin, the C-terminal domain showing the highest affinity. A structural model for binding of twinfilin to barbed ends is proposed based on the similar foldings of twinfilin ADF-H domains and gelsolin segments.[1]


  1. Mammalian twinfilin sequesters ADP-G-actin and caps filament barbed ends: implications in motility. Helfer, E., Nevalainen, E.M., Naumanen, P., Romero, S., Didry, D., Pantaloni, D., Lappalainen, P., Carlier, M.F. EMBO J. (2006) [Pubmed]
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