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Mol Biol Cell. 1996 Jan;7(1):1-15.

Mutational analysis of capping protein function in Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

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Department of Cell Biology and Physiology, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, Missouri 63110, USA.


To investigate physiologic functions and structural correlates for actin capping protein (CP), we analyzed site-directed mutations in CAP1 and CAP2, which encode the alpha and beta subunits of CP in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Mutations in four different regions caused a loss of CP function in vivo despite the presence of mutant protein in the cells. Mutations in three regions caused a complete loss of all aspects of function, including the actin distribution, viability with sac6, and localization of CP to actin cortical patches. Mutation of the fourth region led to partial loss of only one function-formation of actin cables. Some mutations retained function and exhibited the complete wild-type phenotype, and some mutations led to a complete loss of protein and therefore loss of function. The simplest hypothesis that can explain these results is that a single biochemical property is necessary for all in vivo functions. This biochemical property is most likely binding to actin filaments, because the nonfunctional mutant CPs no longer co-localize with actin filaments in vivo and because direct binding of CP to actin filaments has been well established by studies with purified proteins in vitro. More complex hypotheses, involving the existence of additional biochemical properties important for function, cannot be excluded by this analysis.

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