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Neuron. 1989 Sep;3(3):311-9.

Alpha-actinins, calspectin (brain spectrin or fodrin), and actin participate in adhesion and movement of growth cones.

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Department of Neurochemistry and Neuropharmacology, Osaka University Medical School, Japan.


We have used biochemical and immunocytochemical techniques to investigate the possible involvement of membrane cytoskeletal elements such as alpha-actinin, calspectin (brain spectrin or fodrin), and actin in growth cone activities. During NGF-induced differentiation of PC12 cells, alpha-actinin increased in association with neurite outgrowth and was predominantly distributed throughout the entire growth cone and the distal portion of neurites. Filopodial movements were sensitive to Ca2+ flux. Two types of alpha-actinin, with Ca2(+)-sensitive and -insensitive actin binding abilities, were identified in the differentiated cells. Ca2(+)-sensitive alpha-actinin and actin filaments were concentrated in filopodia. The Ca2(+)-insensitive protein was distributed from the body of the growth cone to the distal portion of neurites, corresponding to the substratum-adhesive sites. The location of calspectin in growth cones was similar to that of the Ca2(+)-insensitive alpha-actinin. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that Ca2(+)-sensitive alpha-actinin and actin filaments are involved in Ca2(+)-dependent filopodial movement and Ca2(+)-insensitive alpha-actinin and calspectin are associated with adhesion of growth cones.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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