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J Cell Biol. 2010 Oct 4;191(1):15-22. doi: 10.1083/jcb.201007076. Epub 2010 Sep 27.

Live imaging of single nuclear pores reveals unique assembly kinetics and mechanism in interphase.

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European Molecular Biology Laboratory, Cell Biology and Biophysics Unit, D-69117 Heidelberg, Germany.


In metazoa, new nuclear pore complexes (NPCs) form at two different cell cycle stages: at the end of mitosis concomitant with the reformation of the nuclear envelope and during interphase. However, the mechanisms of these assembly processes may differ. In this study, we apply high resolution live cell microscopy to analyze the dynamics of single NPCs in living mammalian cells during interphase. We show that nuclear growth and NPC assembly are correlated and occur at a constant rate throughout interphase. By analyzing the kinetics of individual NPC assembly events, we demonstrate that they are initiated by slow accumulation of the membrane nucleoporin Pom121 followed by the more rapid association of the soluble NPC subcomplex Nup107-160. This inverse order of recruitment and the overall much slower kinetics compared with postmitotic NPC assembly support the conclusion that the two processes occur by distinct molecular mechanisms.

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