Navigation Links
Researchers decipher the mecanism of membrane fission
Date:10/26/2012

A cell is composed of a nucleus which encloses its genetic information and the cytoplasm which is itself confined by an external membrane separating the cell from the outside world. The impermeability of the membrane and its ability to repair itself protect the cell from its environment. Although this membrane resistance is fundamental to the survival of the cell, the cell also needs to let in particles necessary for its proper functioning. The mechanism by which a small region of the cytoplasmic membrane invaginates to form a bud that will then be sectioned off to let molecules and other particles into the cell is known as endocytosis.

However, this natural process remains elusive due to the remarkable resistance of the cell membrane. Aurlien Roux, a professor of biochemistry and member of the National Centres of Competence in Research (NCCR) Chemical Biology, heads a team that focused on dynamin, a protein involved in endocytosis, to try to understand how an ultra-resistant membrane can nevertheless let external elements enter into the cell.

The power of dynamin

Scientists conducted in vitro experiments using artificial membrane tubules with a radius of 10 to 100 nanometres. They discovered that once dynamin is injected into the tube, it polymerises. In other words, it forms a helix around the tube and compresses it until it breaks. Dynamin produces the energy necessary for this constriction by consuming GTP molecules, much like a car consumes gasoline.

Based on these experiments, Professor Roux's team observed that the location of the fission is very specific and appears at the boundary between the helix and the membrane. A change in radius that curves the membrane, caused by the polymerisation of dynamin, induces a stress that promotes the fracture, states Sandrine Morlot, researcher at the Department of Biochemistry. This is new data allowing us to explain the process of fission.

The researchers were also able to measure the time it took to fission the membrane. Its duration depends on the mechanical properties of the membrane, which vary from one cell to another.

We found that the ability of dynamin to break an ultra-resistant membrane is due to its torque, that is to say, its rotational force, which is vastly superior to that of other proteins, explains Professor Roux. By decrypting the effect of dynamin on the membrane, we have come to understand the workings of membrane fission, a phenomenon which is certainly natural but remains extremely complex.


'/>"/>
Contact: Aurlien Roux
aurelien.roux@unige.ch
022-379-3532
Universit de Genve
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. SDSU researchers to study Chinas national treasure
2. Exercise boosts satisfaction with life, researchers find
3. UC Davis researchers develop new drug delivery system for bladder cancer using nanoparticles
4. Far from random, evolution follows a predictable genetic pattern, Princeton researchers find
5. USF researchers identify gene mutation linked to old age hearing loss
6. USDA scientists collaborate with global researchers to advance the mapping of the barley genome
7. Danish researchers release ground-breaking knowledge about calcium pumps in cells
8. CU-Boulder researchers uncover new target for cancer research
9. Columbia researchers report novel approach for single molecule electronic DNA sequencing
10. Researchers develop new stamping process to pattern biomolecules at high resolution
11. Mount Sinai researchers awarded Provocative Questions grant from National Cancer Institute
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/15/2016)...  A new partnership announced today will help ... in a fraction of the time it takes ... life insurance policies to consumers without requiring inconvenient ... Diagnostics, rapid testing (A1C, Cotinine and HIV) and ... weight, pulse, BMI, and activity data) available at ...
(Date:4/13/2016)... , April 13, 2016  IMPOWER physicians supporting ... are setting a new clinical standard in telehealth thanks ... By leveraging the higi platform, IMPOWER patients can routinely ... pulse and body mass index, and, when they opt ... and convenient visit to a local retail location at ...
(Date:3/29/2016)... , March 29, 2016 ... "Company") LegacyXChange "LEGX" and SelectaDNA/CSI Protect are pleased to ... ink used in a variety of writing instruments, ensuring ... of originally created collectibles from athletes on LegacyXChange will ... analysis of the DNA. Bill Bollander ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... HOUSTON , June 23, 2016 ... agreement with the Cy-Fair Sports Association to serve ... of the agreement, Houston Methodist Willowbrook will provide ... education and connectivity with association coaches, volunteers, athletes ... partner with the Cy-Fair Sports Association and to ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016  The Biodesign Challenge (BDC), a university ... to harness living systems and biotechnology, announced its winning ... New York City . ... showcased projects at MoMA,s Celeste Bartos Theater during the ... MoMA,s senior curator of architecture and design, and ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... STACS DNA Inc., the sample tracking ... Arkansas State Crime Laboratory, has joined STACS DNA as a Field Application Specialist. ... Jocelyn Tremblay, President and COO of STACS DNA. “In further expanding our capacity as ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... June 23, 2016  Blueprint Bio, a company dedicated ... the medical community, has closed its Series A funding ... . "We have received a commitment from ... we need to meet our current goals," stated ... the runway to complete validation on the current projects ...
Breaking Biology Technology: