Diversification and specialization of the bacterial cytoskeleton

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29 Scopus citations


The past decade has witnessed the identification and characterization of bacterial homologs of the three major eukaryotic cytoskeletal families: actin, tubulin and intermediate filaments. These proteins play essential roles in organizing bacterial subcellular environments. Recently, the ParA/MinD superfamily has emerged as a new bacterial cytoskeletal class, and imaging studies hint at the existence of even more, as yet unidentified, cytoskeletal systems. Much as the cytoskeleton is used for different purposes in different eukaryotic cells, the specific identities, functions and regulatory mechanisms of cytoskeletal proteins can vary between different bacterial species. In addition, extensive cross-talk between bacterial cytoskeletal systems may represent an important mode of cytoskeletal regulation. These themes of diversity, species-specificity and crosstalk are emerging as central properties of cytoskeletal biology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5-12
Number of pages8
JournalCurrent Opinion in Cell Biology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Cell Biology


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