We have examined the distribution of four mRNAs-α-tubulin, β-tubulin, flagellar calmodulin, and Class I mRNA-during differentiation of Naegleria gruberi amebas into flagellates by in situ hybridization. Three of the four mRNAs-α-tubulin, β-tubulin, and Class I mRNA-began to be colocalized at the periphery of the cells as soon as transcription of the respective genes was activated and before any microtubular structures were observable. At 70 min after the initiation of differentiation, these mRNAs were relocalized to the base of the growing flagella, adjacent to the basal bodies and microtubule organizing center for the cytoskeletal microtubules. Within an additional 15 min, the mRNAs were translocated to the posterior of the flagellated cells, and by the end of differentiation (120 min), very low levels of the mRNAs were observed. Cytochalasin D inhibited stage-specific localization of the mRNAs, demonstrating that RNA localization was actin dependent. Since cytochalasin D also blocked differentiation, this raises the possibility that actin-dependent RNA movement is an essential process for differentiation.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cell Biology