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J Cell Biol. 1999 Dec 13;147(6):1275-86.

Microtubule actin cross-linking factor (MACF): a hybrid of dystonin and dystrophin that can interact with the actin and microtubule cytoskeletons.

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Department of Pathology and Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York, New York 10032, USA.


We cloned and characterized a full-length cDNA of mouse actin cross-linking family 7 (mACF7) by sequential rapid amplification of cDNA ends-PCR. The completed mACF7 cDNA is 17 kb and codes for a 608-kD protein. The closest relative of mACF7 is the Drosophila protein Kakapo, which shares similar architecture with mACF7. mACF7 contains a putative actin-binding domain and a plakin-like domain that are highly homologous to dystonin (BPAG1-n) at its NH(2) terminus. However, unlike dystonin, mACF7 does not contain a coiled-coil rod domain; instead, the rod domain of mACF7 is made up of 23 dystrophin-like spectrin repeats. At its COOH terminus, mACF7 contains two putative EF-hand calcium-binding motifs and a segment homologous to the growth arrest-specific protein, Gas2. In this paper, we demonstrate that the NH(2)-terminal actin-binding domain of mACF7 is functional both in vivo and in vitro. More importantly, we found that the COOH-terminal domain of mACF7 interacts with and stabilizes microtubules. In transfected cells full-length mACF7 can associate not only with actin but also with microtubules. Hence, we suggest a modified name: MACF (microtubule actin cross-linking factor). The properties of MACF are consistent with the observation that mutations in kakapo cause disorganization of microtubules in epidermal muscle attachment cells and some sensory neurons.

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