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J Cell Sci. 2009 Oct 1;122(Pt 19):3531-41. doi: 10.1242/jcs.046813. Epub 2009 Sep 8.

Regulation of microtubule dynamics by inhibition of the tubulin deacetylase HDAC6.

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Department of Molecular Cell Biology, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot 76100, Israel.


We studied the role of a class II histone deacetylase, HDAC6, known to function as a potent alpha-tubulin deacetylase, in the regulation of microtubule dynamics. Treatment of cells with the class I and II histone deacetylase inhibitor TSA, as well as the selective HDAC6 inhibitor tubacin, increased microtubule acetylation and significantly reduced velocities of microtubule growth and shrinkage. siRNA-mediated knockdown of HDAC6 also increased microtubule acetylation but, surprisingly, had no effect on microtubule growth velocity. At the same time, HDAC6 knockdown abolished the effect of tubacin on microtubule growth, demonstrating that tubacin influences microtubule dynamics via specific inhibition of HDAC6. Thus, the physical presence of HDAC6 with impaired catalytic activity, rather than tubulin acetylation per se, is the factor responsible for the alteration of microtubule growth velocity in HDAC6 inhibitor-treated cells. In support of this notion, HDAC6 mutants bearing inactivating point mutations in either of the two catalytic domains mimicked the effect of HDAC6 inhibitors on microtubule growth velocity. In addition, HDAC6 was found to be physically associated with the microtubule end-tracking protein EB1 and a dynactin core component, Arp1, both of which accumulate at the tips of growing microtubules. We hypothesize that inhibition of HDAC6 catalytic activity may affect microtubule dynamics by promoting the interaction of HDAC6 with tubulin and/or with other microtubule regulatory proteins.

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