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Protist. 2008 Jan;159(1):115-25. Epub 2007 Oct 22.

WCB is a C2 domain protein defining the plasma membrane - sub-pellicular microtubule corset of kinetoplastid parasites.

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Sir William Dunn School of Pathology, University of Oxford, South Parks Road, Oxford OX1 3RE, UK.


WCB is a protein that locates between the inner face of the plasma membrane and the sub-pellicular corset of microtubules in Trypanosoma brucei. We provide the molecular identity of WCB and bioinformatic analysis suggests that it possesses a C2 domain implicated in membrane/protein interactions and a highly charged region possessing characteristics of a putative tubulin-binding domain. Functional analyses via RNA interference (RNAi) depletion show that WCB is essential for cell morphogenesis. Depletion results in gross abnormalities in cell shape, mainly at the cytoskeletal/plasma membrane dynamic posterior end of the trypanosome. Failures in cytokinesis and zoid production are also evident. Furthermore, electron microscopy reveals that RNAi-induced trypanosomes lose local plasma membrane to microtubule corset integrity.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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