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J Biochem. 1996 Apr;119(4):791-8.

F-actin bundling activity of Tetrahymena elongation factor 1 alpha is regulated by Ca2+/calmodulin.

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Institute of Biological Sciences, University of Tsukuba, Ibaraki.


Translation elongation factor 1 alpha (EF-1 alpha) catalyzes the GTP-dependent binding of amino-acyl-tRNA to the ribosome. Previously, Tetrahymena 14-nm filament-associated protein was identified as EF-1 alpha [Kurasawa et al. (1992) Exp. Cell Res. 203, 251-258]. This and several other studies suggest that EF-1 alpha functions not only in translation but also in regulation of some part of the cytoskeleton. Tetrahymena EF-1 alpha bound to F-actin and induced bundling of F-actin. We investigated the effects of GTP/GDP and Ca2+/calmodulin on F-actin bundling activity of EF-1alpha. The presence of GTP, GDP, or guanylyl-imidodiphosphate (GMP-PNP) slightly decreased the amount of EF-1 alpha which bound to F-actin, but each had virtually no effect on the F-actin bundling activity. The formation of F-actin bundles by EF-1 alpha was Ca(2+)-insensitive. In the absence of Ca2+, calmodulin did not bind to EF-1 alpha and F-actin. On the other hand, in the presence of Ca2+, calmodulin directly bound to EF-1 alpha but did not have any serious influence on EF-1 alpha/F-actin binding. Under the conditions, electron microscopy demonstrated that Ca2+/calmodulin completely inhibited the F-actin bundling by EF-1 alpha. These results indicate that CA2+/calmodulin regulates the F-actin bundling activity of EF-1 alpha without inhibition of the binding between Ef-1 alpha and F-actin.

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