Life and Medical Sciences
Cell & Developmental Biology
Wiley InterScience Backfile Collection 1832-2000
In a permeabilized axon model, exogenous ATP can reactivate intraaxonal saltatory organelle movements (microscopically visible manifestations of fast axonal transport). We have studied the dependence of the reactivated movements on the ATP concentration and have also examined the nucleotide specificity of the reactivation. Organelle transport was visualized in isolated lobster giant motor axons using Nomarski optics and video microscopy. The axons were permeabilized with saponin, and movement was reactivated with ATP or other nucleotides. Some slight movement was seen with ATP concentrations as low as 10 μM. The velocity and frequency of the reactivated transport increased with increasing ATP concentrations up to about 5 mM. Movement was also reactivated by deoxyadenosine triphosphate, but not by AMP-PNP (a nonhydrolyzable ATP analogue), ADP, or AMP. Although other nucleotides (CTP, GTP, UTP, ITP) could reactivate transport, movement equivalent to that produced by 0.1 mM ATP was only seen with tenfold or greater concentrations of the other nucleotides. This pattern of specificity is consistent with the hypothesis that a dynein-like ATPase, rather than a myosin, is involved in fast axonal transport.
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