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Plant Physiol. 2008 Jun;147(2):611-23. doi: 10.1104/pp.108.117481. Epub 2008 Apr 11.

Tobacco mosaic virus movement protein interacts with green fluorescent protein-tagged microtubule end-binding protein 1.

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  • 1Institut de Biologie Moléculaire des Plantes, laboratoire propre du CNRS (UPR 2357) conventionné avec l'Université Louis Pasteur, 67084 Strasbourg cedex, France.


The targeting of the movement protein (MP) of Tobacco mosaic virus to plasmodesmata involves the actin/endoplasmic reticulum network and does not require an intact microtubule cytoskeleton. Nevertheless, the ability of MP to facilitate the cell-to-cell spread of infection is tightly correlated with interactions of the protein with microtubules, indicating that the microtubule system is involved in the transport of viral RNA. While the MP acts like a microtubule-associated protein able to stabilize microtubules during late infection stages, the protein was also shown to cause the inactivation of the centrosome upon expression in mammalian cells, thus suggesting that MP may interact with factors involved in microtubule attachment, nucleation, or polymerization. To further investigate the interactions of MP with the microtubule system in planta, we expressed the MP in the presence of green fluorescent protein (GFP)-fused microtubule end-binding protein 1a (EB1a) of Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana; AtEB1a:GFP). The two proteins colocalize and interact in vivo as well as in vitro and exhibit mutual functional interference. These findings suggest that MP interacts with EB1 and that this interaction may play a role in the associations of MP with the microtubule system during infection.

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