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Intraflagellar Transport and Functional Analysis of Genes Required for Flagellum Formation in Trypanosomes.

Abstract : Intraflagellar transport (IFT) is the bidirectional movement of protein complexes required for cilia and flagella formation. We investigated IFT by analyzing nine conventional IFT genes and five novel putative IFT genes (PIFT) in Trypanosoma brucei that maintain its existing flagellum while assembling a new flagellum. Immunostaining against IFT172 or expression of tagged IFT20 or green fluorescent protein GFP::IFT52 revealed the presence of IFT proteins along the axoneme and at the basal body and probasal body regions of both old and new flagella. IFT particles were detected by electron microscopy and exhibited a strict localization to axonemal microtubules 3-4 and 7-8, suggesting the existence of specific IFT tracks. Rapid (>3 mum/s) bidirectional intraflagellar movement of GFP::IFT52 was observed in old and new flagella. RNA interference silencing demonstrated that all individual IFT and PIFT genes are essential for new flagellum construction but the old flagellum remained present. Inhibition of IFTB proteins completely blocked axoneme construction. Absence of IFTA proteins (IFT122 and IFT140) led to formation of short flagella filled with IFT172, indicative of defects in retrograde transport. Two PIFT proteins turned out to be required for retrograde transport and three for anterograde transport. Finally, flagellum membrane elongation continues despite the absence of axonemal microtubules in all IFT/PIFT mutant.
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Sabrina Absalon, Thierry Blisnick, Linda Kohl, Géraldine Toutirais, Gwénola Doré, et al.. Intraflagellar Transport and Functional Analysis of Genes Required for Flagellum Formation in Trypanosomes.. Molecular Biology of the Cell, American Society for Cell Biology, 2008, 19 (3), pp.929-944. ⟨10.1091/mbc.E07-08-0749⟩. ⟨pasteur-00217549⟩

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