Mechanism of microtubule lumen entry for the α-tubulin acetyltransferase enzyme αTAT1

Courtney E Coombes, Ami Yamamoto, Mark McClellan, Taylor A. Reid, Melissa Plooster, G.W. Gant Luxton, Joshua Alper, Jonathon Howard, Melissa K Gardner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

21 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Microtubules are structural polymers inside of cells that are subject to posttranslational modifications. These posttranslational modifications create functionally distinct subsets of microtubule networks in the cell, and acetylation is the only modification that takes place in the hollow lumen of the microtubule. Although it is known that the α-tubulin acetyltransferase (αTAT1) is the primary enzyme responsible for microtubule acetylation, the mechanism for how αTAT1 enters the microtubule lumen to access its acetylation sites is not well understood. By performing biochemical assays, fluorescence and electron microscopy experiments, and computational simulations, we found that αTAT1 enters the microtubule lumen through the microtubule ends, and through bends or breaks in the lattice. Thus, microtubule structure is an important determinant in the acetylation process. In addition, once αTAT1 enters the microtubule lumen, the mobility of αTAT1 within the lumen is controlled by the affinity of αTAT1 for its acetylation sites, due to the rapid rebinding of αTAT1 onto highly concentrated α-tubulin acetylation sites. These results have important implications for how acetylation could gradually accumulate on stable subsets of microtubules inside of the cell.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)E7176-E7184
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Volume113
Issue number46
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 15 2016

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Acetyltransferases
Tubulin
Microtubules
Acetylation
Enzymes
Post Translational Protein Processing
Fluorescence Microscopy
Electron Microscopy
Polymers

Keywords

  • Acetylation
  • Biophysics
  • Microscopy
  • Microtubule
  • Modeling

Cite this

Mechanism of microtubule lumen entry for the α-tubulin acetyltransferase enzyme αTAT1. / Coombes, Courtney E; Yamamoto, Ami; McClellan, Mark; Reid, Taylor A.; Plooster, Melissa; Luxton, G.W. Gant; Alper, Joshua; Howard, Jonathon; Gardner, Melissa K.

In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, Vol. 113, No. 46, 15.11.2016, p. E7176-E7184.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Coombes, Courtney E ; Yamamoto, Ami ; McClellan, Mark ; Reid, Taylor A. ; Plooster, Melissa ; Luxton, G.W. Gant ; Alper, Joshua ; Howard, Jonathon ; Gardner, Melissa K. / Mechanism of microtubule lumen entry for the α-tubulin acetyltransferase enzyme αTAT1. In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 2016 ; Vol. 113, No. 46. pp. E7176-E7184.
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