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Curr Opin Cell Biol. 2007 Feb;19(1):24-30. Epub 2006 Dec 18.

Gamma-tubulin complexes and microtubule organization.

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Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique/Pierre Fabre, UMR 2587, 3 rue des Satellites, 31400 Toulouse, France.


Microtubule nucleation requires gamma-tubulin, which exists in two main protein complexes: the gamma-tubulin small complex, and the gamma-tubulin ring complex. During mitosis, these complexes accumulate at the centrosome to support spindle formation. Gamma-tubulin complexes are also present at non-centrosomal microtubule nucleation sites, both in interphase and in mitosis. In interphase, non-centrosomal nucleation enables the formation of microtubule bundles or networks of branched microtubules. Gamma-tubulin complexes may be involved not only in microtubule nucleation, but also in regulating microtubule dynamics. Recent findings indicate that the dynamics of microtubule plus-ends are altered, depending on the expression of gamma-tubulin complex proteins.

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