September 16, 2010

The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is a very large organelle made up of continuous membrane tubules and sheets, where membrane-bound and secreted proteins are made and sorted. The ER is very dynamic, with membrane constantly rearranging, and does so with the help of microtubules. A recent paper looks at ER dynamics and through the use of live imaging shows ER sliding along a population of microtubules that are stabilized by acetylation modifications. Image above shows typical ER dynamics—the ER at the first time point is in green, and the ER at 30 seconds later is in red. The yellow arrow shows a region where the ER did not move, while the white arrow shows a sliding event.Reference: Jonathan R. Friedman, Brant M. Webster, David N. Mastronarde, Kristen J. Verhey, and Gia K. Voeltz, 2010. Originally published in Journal of Cell Bioloy. doi: 10.1083/jcb.200911024. Paper can be found here.

BONUS! Cool movie of above image can be found here.

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