Cell Biology

The Ties That Bind

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  06 Jul 2001:
Vol. 293, Issue 5527, pp. 15
DOI: 10.1126/science.293.5527.15a

Cytoplasmic dynein is one of the primary microtubule-based motors that, in conjunction with the accessory protein complex dynactin, moves cellular cargoes, such as membranes, toward the minus end of microtubules. The interaction between dynein and dynactin involves the binding of the intermediate chain of dynein to the dynactin subunit p150Glued. Lane et al. report that both the dynein intermediate chain and p150Glued are cleaved by caspases during programmed cell death (apoptosis). This cleavage releases the cytoplasmic dynein complex from intracellular membranes and abolishes dynein-induced movement of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) membranes in vitro. Membrane motility could be restored upon replenishment of dynein, confirming the dynamic character of the interaction between motors and cargoes. The diversion of normal membrane traffic during apoptosis may contribute to surface alterations on dying cells as a prelude to their disposal. — SMH

J. Cell Biol. 153, 1415 (2001).

Navigate This Article