May 2016 | Volume 213, No. 4
People & Ideas
- Diaphanous formin mDia2 regulates CENP-A levels at centromeres
The diaphanous formin mDia2, a protein involved in cytoskeletal control, is required for new CENP-A loading at centromeres during the cell cycle to maintain epigenetic markers.
- The structured core of human β tubulin confers isotype-specific polymerization properties
The tubulin gene family encodes multiple tubulin isotypes that can have distinct polymerization properties. Pamula et al. show that residue changes within β tubulin’s structured core are largely responsible for isotype-specific differences in dynamic instability.
- Asterless is required for centriole length control and sperm development
Loss of the centriole protein Asterless (Asl) prevents centriole duplication, which has limited the study of its function at centrioles. Here, Galletta et al. show that Asl controls centriole length and ensures proper basal body functions during spermatogenesis.
- DSCR1 is required for both axonal growth cone extension and steering
Wang et al. identify that DSCR1, a gene on chromosome 21 that is associated with Down syndrome, controls both the rate and direction of axon growth in response to extrinsic cues by regulating cytoskeletal dynamics and local protein synthesis in the growth cone.
- Mesp1 controls the speed, polarity, and directionality of cardiovascular progenitor migration
The transcription factors Mesp1 and Mesp2 are equally efficient at promoting specification, EMT, and differentiation of early multipotent cardiovascular progenitors. However, only Mesp1 promotes the speed, polarity, and directionality of cell migration, explaining how Mesp1 coordinates progenitor fate decision and migration during development.
- Extracellular chloride signals collagen IV network assembly during basement membrane formation
Chloride is ubiquitous in physiology but understood to provide ionic strength for tissue function. The authors discover a molecular function of chloride whereby the ion signals the assembly of collagen IV, establishing a microenvironment on the outside of cells.