Sfr13, a member of a large family of asymmetrically localized Sfi1-repeat proteins, is important for basal body separation and stability in Tetrahymena thermophila

Alexander J. Stemm-Wolf, Janet B. Meehl, Mark Winey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Scopus citations

Abstract

Directed fluid flow, which is achieved by the coordinated beating of motile cilia, is required for processes as diverse as cellular swimming, developmental patterning and mucus clearance. Cilia are nucleated, anchored and aligned at the plasma membrane by basal bodies, which are cylindrical microtubule-based structures with ninefold radial symmetry. In the unicellular ciliate Tetrahymena thermophila, two centrin family members associated with the basal body are important for both basal body organization and stabilization. We have identified a family of 13 proteins in Tetrahymena that contain centrin-binding repeats related to those identified in the Saccharomyces cerevisiae Sfi1 protein. We have named these proteins Sfr1-Sfr13 (for Sfi1-repeat). Nine of the Sfr proteins localize in unique polarized patterns surrounding the basal body, suggesting non-identical roles in basal body organization and association with basal body accessory structures. Furthermore, the Sfr proteins are found in distinct basal body populations in Tetrahymena cells, indicating that they are responsive to particular developmental programs. A complete genetic deletion of one of the family members, Sfr13, causes unstable basal bodies and defects in daughter basal body separation from the mother, phenotypes also observed with centrin disruption. It is likely that the other Sfr family members are involved in distinct centrin functions, providing specificity to the tasks that centrins perform at basal bodies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1659-1671
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Cell Science
Volume126
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2013
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Asymmetry
  • Basal body
  • Centrin
  • Sfi1-repeat

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology

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