The role of myosin heavy chain phosphorylation in Dictyostelium motility, chemotaxis and F-actin localization.
ABSTRACT To assess the role of myosin II heavy chain (MHC) phosphorylation in basic motility and natural chemotaxis, the Dictyostelium mhcA null mutant mhcA(-), mhcA(-) cells rescued with a myosin II gene that mimics the constitutively unphosphorylated state (3XALA) and mhcA(-) cells rescued with a myosin II gene that mimics the constitutively phosphorylated state (3XASP), were analyzed in buffer and in response to the individual spatial, temporal and concentration components of a cAMP wave using computer-assisted methods. Each mutant strain exhibited unique defects in cell motility and chemotaxis. Although mhcA(-) cells could crawl with some polarity and showed chemotaxis with highly reduced efficiency in a spatial gradient of cAMP, they were very slow, far less polar and more three-dimensional than control cells. They were also incapable of responding to temporal gradients of cAMP, of chemotaxis in a natural wave of cAMP or streaming late in aggregation. 3XASP cells were faster and chemotactically more efficient than mhcA(-) cells, but still incapable of responding to temporal gradients of cAMP, chemotaxis in natural waves of cAMP or streaming late in aggregation. 3XALA cells were fast, were able to respond to temporal gradients of cAMP, and responded to natural waves of cAMP. However, they exhibited a 50% reduction in chemotactic efficiency, could not stream late in aggregation and could not enter the streams of control cells in mixed cultures. F-actin staining further revealed that while the presence of unphosphorylated MHC was essential for the increase in F-actin in the cytoplasm in response to the increasing temporal gradient of cAMP in the front of a natural wave, the actual dephosphorylation event was essential for the associated increase in cortical F-actin. The results of these studies indicate that MHC phosphorylation-dephosphorylation, like myosin II regulatory light chain phosphorylation-dephosphorylation, represents a potential downstream target of the regulatory cascades emanating from the different phases of the wave.
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ABSTRACT: In Candida albicans, the a1-alpha2 complex represses white-opaque switching, as well as mating. Based upon the assumption that the a1-alpha2 corepressor complex binds to the gene that regulates white-opaque switching, a chromatinimmunoprecipitation-microarray analysis strategy was used to identify 52 genes that bound to the complex. One of these genes, TOS9, exhibited an expression pattern consistent with a "master switch gene." TOS9 was only expressed in opaque cells, and its gene product, Tos9p, localized to the nucleus. Deletion of the gene blocked cells in the white phase, misexpression in the white phase caused stable mass conversion of cells to the opaque state, and misexpression blocked temperature-induced mass conversion from the opaque state to the white state. A model was developed for the regulation of spontaneous switching between the opaque state and the white state that includes stochastic changes of Tos9p levels above and below a threshold that induce changes in the chromatin state of an as-yet-unidentified switching locus. TOS9 has also been referred to as EAP2 and WOR1.Eukaryotic Cell 11/2006; 5(10):1674-87. · 3.60 Impact Factor