Actin polymerization provides force for vital processes of the eukaryotic cell, but our understanding of actin dynamics and energetics remains limited due to the lack of high-quality probes. Most current probes affect dynamics of actin or its interactions with actin-binding proteins (ABPs), and cannot track the bound nucleotide. Here, we identify a family of highly sensitive fluorescent nucleotide analogues structurally compatible with actin. We demonstrate that these fluorescent nucleotides bind to actin, maintain functional interactions with a number of essential ABPs, are hydrolyzed within actin filaments, and provide energy to power actin-based processes. These probes also enable monitoring actin assembly and nucleotide exchange with single-molecule microscopy and fluorescence anisotropy kinetics, therefore providing robust and highly versatile tools to study actin dynamics and functions of ABPs.
- 1182 Biokemia, solu- ja molekyylibiologia