Vinculin minds the endothelial gap

submitted by: JCB
The adhesions between endothelial cells transiently remodel in response to angiogenic growth factors and inflammatory cytokines. Huveneers et al. reveal that remodeling takes place at a subset of adhesions called focal adherens junctions, which recruit the mechanosensory protein Vinculin to resist tension from the actomyosin cytoskeleton and avoid excessive disruption during the remodeling process. This biosights episode presents the paper by Huveneers et al. from the March 5, 2012, issue of...

Septins rein in the membrane

submitted by: JCB
T cells require the septin family of GTP-binding proteins to maintain the integrity of their plasma membranes as they invade through tissues. Gilden et al. reveal that septins function by assembling on membrane blebs to retract them back into shape. This biosights episode presents the paper by Gilden et al. from the January 9, 2012, issue of The Journal of Cell Biology and includes an interview with senior author Max Krummel (University of California, San Francisco). Produced by Caitlin...

Oocyte microtubules show their bias

submitted by: JCB
Several mRNAs are specifically transported to the anterior and posterior regions of Drosophila oocytes by microtubule-based motor proteins, but the organization of microtubules in these cells is unclear. Parton et al. reveal that oocyte microtubules are highly dynamic and display a PAR-1-dependent bias in polarity that facilitates transport of oskar mRNA to the oocyte posterior. This biosights episode presents the paper by Parton et al. from the July 11, 2011, issue of The Journal of Cell...