We have characterized a cytoplasmic dynein motor isoform that is present in extracts of Drosophila embryos. A prominent high molecular weight (HMW) polypeptide (>400 kDa) is enriched in microtubules prepared from nucleotide-depleted embryonic extracts. Based on its ATP-sensitive microtubule binding activity, 20 S sedimentation coefficient, sensitivity to UV-vanadate and nucleotide specificity, the HMW polypeptide resembles cytoplasmic dyneins prepared from other organisms. The Drosophila cytoplasmic dynein acts as a minus-end motor that promotes microtubule translocation in vitro. A polyclonal antibody raised against the dynein heavy chain polypeptide was used to localize the dynein antigen in whole-mount preparations of embryos by immunofluorescence microscopy. These studies show that the dynein motor is associated with microtubules throughout embryogenesis, including mitotic spindle microtubules and microtubules of the embryonic nervous system.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||13|
|Journal||Journal of cell science|
|State||Published - Jun 1 1994|
- Microtubule motor