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Encyclopedia > Kinesin
The kinesin dimer attaches to, and moves along, microtubules.
The kinesin dimer attaches to, and moves along, microtubules.
Kinesins (the one shown is from PDB code 3kin) and dyneins walk along microtubules dragging their cargo along with them (red: ATP) (bottom: domain that links to the cargos) (more details...)
Kinesins (the one shown is from PDB code 3kin) and dyneins walk along microtubules dragging their cargo along with them (red: ATP) (bottom: domain that links to the cargos) (more details...)

Kinesin is the name given to a class of motor protein dimer found in biological cells. Image File history File links Circle-question-red. ... Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (877x534, 159 KB) I created this image myself (using POVray 3D imaging software), and hereby license it under the GFDL. It is a simple cartoon of a kinesin dimer attached to a microtubule. ... Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (877x534, 159 KB) I created this image myself (using POVray 3D imaging software), and hereby license it under the GFDL. It is a simple cartoon of a kinesin dimer attached to a microtubule. ... Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (231x800, 24 KB) File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Kinesin ... Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (231x800, 24 KB) File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Kinesin ... A representation of the 3D structure of myoglobin, showing coloured alpha helices. ... Sucrose, or common table sugar, is composed of glucose and fructose. ... Cells in culture, stained for keratin The cell is the structural and functional unit of all living organisms. ...

Contents

Function

Kinesins are a class of motor protein that transport cargo about the cell by walking unidirectionally along microtubule tracks. The cargo may be large molecules synthesised in the cell body, intracellular components such as vesicles, or organelles like mitochondria. Kinesins use the energy liberated by ATP hydrolysis to power their motion along the microtubule. Microtubules are protein structures found within cells, one of the components of the cytoskeleton. ... In cell biology, a vesicle is a relatively small and enclosed compartment, separated from the cytosol by at least one lipid bilayer. ... In cell biology, a mitochondrion is an organelle found in the cells of most eukaryotes. ... ATP may refer to: Chemistry/Biochemistry Adenosine triphosphate, the universal energy currency of all living organisms Companies Alberta Theatre Projects, a major Canadian theatre company. ...


Structure

The typical kinesin is a protein dimer consisting of two heavy chains and two light chains. The heavy chains consist of a globular head (the motor domain) connected via a short, flexible neck linker to the stalk - a long, central coiled-coil region - that ends in a tail region formed with a light-chain. The stalks intertwine to form the kinesin dimer. The cargo binds to the tail while the twin heads alternately bind the microtubule as the kinesin pulls the cargo along.


Polarity

Motor proteins travel in a specific direction along a microtubule. This is because the microtubule is polar, the heads only bind to the microtubule in one orientation, and ATP hydrolysis drives the molecule in one direction.


Most kinesins walk towards the plus end of a microtubule which, in most cells, entails transporting cargo from the centre of the cell towards the periphery. This form of transport is known as anterograde transport.


Some kinesins, and a different type of motor protein known as dyneins, move towards the minus end of the microtubule. Thus they transport cargo from the periphery of the cell towards the centre. This is known as retrograde transport. These motors have a different morphology: their structure is such that they move in the opposite direction but the directional principle is the same as for the rest of the family.


Proposed mechanisms

Kinesin accomplishes transport by essentially "walking" along a microtubule. Two mechanisms were proposed to explain how this movement occurs.

  • In the "hand-over-hand" mechanism, the kinesin heads step over one another, alternating the lead position.
  • In the "inchworm" mechanism, one kinesin head always leads, moving forward a step before the trailing head catches up.

Despite some remaining controversy, mounting evidence points towards the hand-over-hand mechanism as being more likely.


Asters and assembly

In recent years, it has been found that microtubule-based molecular motors (including a number of kinesins) have a role in mitosis (cell division). The mechanism by which the cytoskeleton of the daughter cell separates from that of the mother cell was unclear. It seems that motors organize the two separate microtubule asters into a metastable structure independent of any external positional cues. This self-organization is in turn dependent on the directionality of the motors as well as their processivity (ability to walk). Thus motors are necessary for the formation of the mitotic spindle assemblies that perform chromosome separation. Specifically, proteins from the Kinesin 13 family act as regulators of microtubule dynamics. The prototypical member of this family is MCAK (formerly Kif2C, XKCM1, Gene KIF2C) which acts at the ends of microtubule polymers to depolymerize them. The function of MCAK in cells and its mechanism in vitro is currently being investigated by numerous labs. Mitosis divides genetic information during cell division. ... The eukaryotic cytoskeleton. ... Micrograph showing condensed chromosomes in blue and the mitotic spindle in green during prometaphase of mitosis The mitotic spindle (a. ...


Additional images

See also

Molecular motors are biological nanomachines and are the essential agents of movement in living organisms. ... Axoplasmic transport, also called axonal transport, is responsible for movement of mitochondria, lipids, synaptic vesicles, proteins, and other cell parts to and from a neurons cell body through the cytoplasm of its axon, which is called axoplasm. ...

External links

  • How Kinesin Moves
  • Kinesin and Dynein Microtubule Movement
  • Biology of the Cell, 4th ed
  • The Inner Life of a Cell, video featuring a Kinesin transporting a vesicle

  Results from FactBites:
 
Kinesin - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (336 words)
Kinesin is a class of motor protein dimer found in biological cells.
A kinesin attaches to microtubules, and moves along the tubule in order to transport cellular cargo, such as vesicles.
Kinesins typically consist of two large globular heads that allow attachment to microtubules, a central coiled region, and a region termed light-chain, which connects the kinesin to the intracellular component to be moved.
Parameters of kinesin-based nanoactuators (1502 words)
Kinesin is a prominent motorprotein, which is able to mimic cellular motility in vitro driving taxol-stabilized microtubules across kinesin-coated surfaces.
Kinesin molecules translocate in 8-nm steps along the surface of microtubules which represent 25-nm thick and about 5 to 20-µm long hollow-cylindrical self-assembling proteinaceous rails, having a plus and a minus end.
Kinesin was purified from porcine brain homogenates by a combined procedure of ion exchange chromatography, microtubule affinity-binding, and gel filtration (Kuznetsov and Gelfand, 1986).
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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