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Cytoskeleton (Hoboken). 2012 Jun;69(6):337-70. doi: 10.1002/cm.21031. Epub 2012 May 4.

Tropomodulins: pointed-end capping proteins that regulate actin filament architecture in diverse cell types.

Author information

1
Department of Cell Biology, The Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, California 92037, USA.

Abstract

Tropomodulins are a family of four proteins (Tmods 1-4) that cap the pointed ends of actin filaments in actin cytoskeletal structures in a developmentally regulated and tissue-specific manner. Unique among capping proteins, Tmods also bind tropomyosins (TMs), which greatly enhance the actin filament pointed-end capping activity of Tmods. Tmods are defined by a TM-regulated/Pointed-End Actin Capping (TM-Cap) domain in their unstructured N-terminal portion, followed by a compact, folded Leucine-Rich Repeat/Pointed-End Actin Capping (LRR-Cap) domain. By inhibiting actin monomer association and dissociation from pointed ends, Tmods regulate actin dynamics and turnover, stabilizing actin filament lengths and cytoskeletal architecture. In this review, we summarize the genes, structural features, molecular and biochemical properties, actin regulatory mechanisms, expression patterns, and cell and tissue functions of Tmods. By understanding Tmods' functions in the context of their molecular structure, actin regulation, binding partners, and related variants (leiomodins 1-3), we can draw broad conclusions that can explain the diverse morphological and functional phenotypes that arise from Tmod perturbation experiments in vitro and in vivo. Tmod-based stabilization and organization of intracellular actin filament networks provide key insights into how the emergent properties of the actin cytoskeleton drive tissue morphogenesis and physiology.

PMID:
22488942
PMCID:
PMC3444156
DOI:
10.1002/cm.21031
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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