2′-Deoxy-GTP in the microtubule cytoskeleton of neuronal cells cultured with nerve growth factor

James M Angelastro, Daniel L. Purich

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Tubulin, widely recognized as a GTP/GDP-binding protein, has been isolated in its polymerized state from rat PC 12 cells and embryonic chick dorsal root ganglion neurons by Triton X-100 detergent extraction of the cytoskeletal fraction. Perchloric acid extraction and deproteinization of this fraction permitted subsequent analysis of nucleotide identity and content by high performance liquid chromatography. PC 12 cells grown in the absence of nerve growth factor (NGF) contained ADP, ATP, GDP, and GTP at levels consistent with the actin and tubulin content of the cytoskeletal fraction. Microtubules from PC 12 cells cultured in the presence of NGF contain an additional nucleotide that we have identified as dGTP. Analysis of whole cell nucleotide extracts from PC 12 cells grown in the absence or presence of NGF revealed no evidence for the presence of dGTP at 4 and 14 days, respectively. We have determined that embryonic chick dorsal root ganglion neurons also contain this deoxyribonucleotide, and we found virtually no ADP or ATP in the extracted dorsal root ganglion cytoskeletal fraction. On the basis of metabolic labeling studies with [14C] guanine, we have inferred that the presence of dGTP in NGF-treated PC12 cells probably arises either from binding to the nonexchangeable nucleotide site of tubulin undergoing dynamic assembly/disassembly or from binding to the exchangeable site of tubulin subsequently incorporated into highly stabilized microtubules.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)25685-25689
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number36
StatePublished - Dec 25 1992
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry

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