Natural Sciences
Life Sciences
Scientific Computing
May 17 2018 / 14:15 PM

Life Science

Prof. Dr. Pierre Gönczy, Swiss Institute for Experimental Cancer Research, School of Life Sciences, École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), Lausanne, Switzerland

Institute for Theoretical Physics, Seminar room, Philosophenweg 19, 69120 Heidelberg

Ulrich Schwarz

The centriole is a remarkable microtubule-based organelle that is essential for the formation of cilia, flagella and centrosomes. The centriole is organized around a nine-fold symmetrical cartwheel typically ~100 nm in height, which is critical for the onset of organelle biogenesis. The cartwheel comprises a stack of ring-containing entities that each accommodates nine homodimers of SAS-6 proteins. In contrast to the knowledge about the self-assembly properties of SAS-6 proteins, the mechanisms enabling ring stacking are poorly understood. Furthermore, the assembly dynamics of SAS-6 ring-containing entities remains elusive. After introducing the subject matter, I will report notably on our development of a cell-free assay to address this important open question using the Chlamydomonas reinhardtii SAS-6 protein CrSAS-6. Using high-speed atomic force microscopy (AFM)-based, we monitored the assembly dynamics of CrSAS-6 homodimers, and thus determined possible routes and kinetic rates for ring formation.

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