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Cytoskeleton and vesicle mobility in astrocytes.

Journal article
Authors Maja Potokar
Marko Kreft
Lizhen Li
Daniel Andersson
Tina Pangrsic
Helena H Chowdhury
Milos Pekny
Robert Zorec
Published in Traffic (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Volume 8
Issue 1
Pages 12-20
ISSN 1398-9219
Publication year 2007
Published at Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, Department of Clinical Neuroscience and Rehabilitation
Pages 12-20
Language en
Keywords Actins, physiology, Animals, Astrocytes, drug effects, physiology, ultrastructure, Calcium, metabolism, Cells, Cultured, Cytoskeleton, physiology, Glial Fibrillary Acidic Protein, deficiency, physiology, Intermediate Filaments, physiology, Ionomycin, pharmacology, Mice, Mice, Knockout, Microtubules, drug effects, physiology, Movement, Nocodazole, pharmacology, Rats, Vimentin, deficiency, physiology
Subject categories Clinical neurophysiology, Medical cell biology, Molecular biology


Exocytotic vesicles in astrocytes are increasingly viewed as essential in astrocyte-to-neuron communication in the brain. In neurons and excitable secretory cells, delivery of vesicles to the plasma membrane for exocytosis involves an interaction with the cytoskeleton, in particular microtubules and actin filaments. Whether cytoskeletal elements affect vesicle mobility in astrocytes is unknown. We labeled single vesicles with fluorescent atrial natriuretic peptide and monitored their mobility in rat astrocytes with depolymerized microtubules, actin, and intermediate filaments and in mouse astrocytes deficient in the intermediate filament proteins glial fibrillary acidic protein and vimentin. In astrocytes, as in neurons, microtubules participated in directional vesicle mobility, and actin filaments played an important role in this process. Depolymerization of intermediate filaments strongly affected vesicle trafficking and in their absence the fraction of vesicles with directional mobility was reduced.

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