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J Biol Chem. 2001 Sep 28;276(39):36598-605. Epub 2001 Jul 18.

beta III spectrin binds to the Arp1 subunit of dynactin.

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Department of Cell and Molecular Pharmacology, University of California, San Francisco, California 94143, USA.


Cytoplasmic dynein is an intracellular motor responsible for endoplasmic reticulum-to-Golgi vesicle trafficking and retrograde axonal transport. The accessory protein dynactin has been proposed to mediate the association of dynein with vesicular cargo. Dynactin contains a 37-nm filament made up of the actin-related protein, Arp1, which may interact with a vesicle-associated spectrin network. Here, we demonstrate that Arp1 binds directly to the Golgi-associated betaIII spectrin isoform. We identify two Arp1-binding sites in betaIII spectrin, one of which overlaps with the actin-binding site conserved among spectrins. Although conventional actin binds weakly to betaIII spectrin, Arp1 binds robustly in the presence of excess F-actin. Dynein, dynactin, and betaIII spectrin co-purify on vesicles isolated from rat brain, and betaIII spectrin co-immunoprecipitates with dynactin from rat brain cytosol. In interphase cells, betaIII spectrin and dynactin both localize to cytoplasmic vesicles, co-localizing most significantly in the perinuclear region of the cell. In dividing cells, betaIII spectrin and dynactin co-localize to the developing cleavage furrow and mitotic spindle, a novel localization for betaIII spectrin. We hypothesize that the interaction between betaIII spectrin and Arp1 recruits dynein and dynactin to intracellular membranes and provides a direct link between the microtubule motor complex and its membrane-bounded cargo.

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