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WormBook. 2014 Apr 4:1-15. doi: 10.1895/wormbook.1.68.2.

Nematode sperm motility.

Author information

1
National Institute for Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda MD, USA. smithhe2@niddk.nih.gov.

Abstract

Form follows function, and this maxim holds particularly true for the nematode sperm cell. Motility is essential for fertilization, and the process of spermatogenesis culminates in the production of a crawling spermatozoon with an extended pseudopod. However, the morphological similarity to amoeboid cells of other organisms is not conserved at the molecular level. Instead of utilizing the actin cytoskeleton and motor proteins, the pseudopod moves via the regulated assembly and disassembly of filaments composed of the major sperm protein (MSP). The current work reviews the structure and dynamics of MSP filament formation, the critical role of pH in MSP assembly, and the components that regulate this process. The combination of cytological, biochemical, and genetic approaches in this relatively simple system make nematode sperm an attractive model for investigating the mechanics of amoeboid cell motility.

PMID:
24715710
PMCID:
PMC5402208
DOI:
10.1895/wormbook.1.68.2
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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