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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1979 Aug;76(8):3698-702.

Titin: major myofibrillar components of striated muscle.


Electrophoretic analyses of protein components of striated muscle myofibril purified from various vertebrate and invertebrate species revealed that proteins much larger than myosin heavy chain are present in significant amounts. To define possible roles of these heretofore unidentified proteins, we purified a combination of two uncommonly large proteins, designated as titin, from chicken breast myofibrils. Chemical and immunological studies indicated that titin is distinct from myosin, actin, and filamin. Specific titin anti body crossreacts with similar protein in both skeletal and cardiac myofibrils of many vertebrate and invertebrate species. Immunofluorescent staining of glycerinated chicken breast myofibrils indicated that titin is present in M lines, Z lines, the junctions of A and I bands, and perhaps throughout the entire A bands. Similar staining studies of myofibrils from other species suggest that titinlike proteins may be organized in all myofibrils according to a common architectural plan. We conclude that titin is a structurally conserved myofibrillar component of vertebrate and invertebrate striated muscles.

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