Summary: Structure of actin cross-linked with -actinin: a network of bundles
SAFINYA GROUP, UC Santa Barbara
Filamentous (F)-actin networks are involved in
muscle function, cell shape, motility, and division.
The elucidation of structures formed from F-actin
and associated biological molecules (like -actinin)
is a necessary step towards a fundamental
understanding of the mechanical and rheological
properties of cells.
Cover image shows an illustration of a proposed
structure of a F-actin bundle at a branching site,
showing how the protein -actinin (red) induces a
network-like structure in the F-actin protein by
forming cross links between its filaments. This
structure revealing nanoscale ordering is based on
a synchrotron x-ray scattering study performed at
the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Laboratory,
which indicates that -actinin induces the
formation of a disordered quasi-square lattice
within the Bundle. (O. Pelletier, E. Pokidysheva, L.