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PLoS One. 2012;7(2):e31344. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0031344. Epub 2012 Feb 15.

A MAP6-related protein is present in protozoa and is involved in flagellum motility.

Author information

1
Microbiologie Fondamentale et Pathogénicité, Université de Bordeaux, UMR 5234, Bordeaux, France.

Abstract

In vertebrates the microtubule-associated proteins MAP6 and MAP6d1 stabilize cold-resistant microtubules. Cilia and flagella have cold-stable microtubules but MAP6 proteins have not been identified in these organelles. Here, we describe TbSAXO as the first MAP6-related protein to be identified in a protozoan, Trypanosoma brucei. Using a heterologous expression system, we show that TbSAXO is a microtubule stabilizing protein. Furthermore we identify the domains of the protein responsible for microtubule binding and stabilizing and show that they share homologies with the microtubule-stabilizing Mn domains of the MAP6 proteins. We demonstrate, in the flagellated parasite, that TbSAXO is an axonemal protein that plays a role in flagellum motility. Lastly we provide evidence that TbSAXO belongs to a group of MAP6-related proteins (SAXO proteins) present only in ciliated or flagellated organisms ranging from protozoa to mammals. We discuss the potential roles of the SAXO proteins in cilia and flagella function.

PMID:
22355359
PMCID:
PMC3280300
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0031344
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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