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Biomedical Cell Biology seminar: Mechanics of Kinesin-5 and Kinesin-14 force generation and transduction

At a Glance
Date: Wednesday 18 January 2012
Time: 1.30-2pm
Location: T0.08, Clinical Trials Unit, Warwick Medical School
Open To: Staff and students
Cost: Free
Summary: Seminar by Dr Mishan Britto on

'Mechanics of Kinesin-5 and Kinesin-14 force generation and transduction'

Dr Mishan Britto, Research Fellow, Biomedical Cell Biology Division, University of Warwick, will present this seminar, speaking on 'Mechanics of Kinesin-5 and Kinesin-14 force generation and transduction'.


Kinesin-5 and Kinesin-14 are oppositely directed mitotic kinesins. Crystal structures of Kinesin-5 and Kinesin-14 heads look remarkably similar. In S. pombe when Cut7 (Kinesin-5) is lacking, the two half spindles fail to interdigitate. Klp2 (Kinesin-14) in S. pombe is required for interphase microtubule stabilisation and polarisation.

We are interested in elucidating the mechanics of Kinesin-5 and Kinesin-14 force generation and transduction. We use an in vitro model utilising purified full length and various truncated forms of these proteins. A low torsional stiffness is required for kinesins to swivel microtubules to 3600 such as by single Kinesin-1 molecules. This low torsional stiffness of the Kinesin-1 allows it to move microtubules in an in vitro microtubule-gliding assay irrespective of the motor orientation on surface. In contrast our studies show Cut7 has a stringent angle of acceptance of microtubules for movement in a gliding assay.

These studies allow us to delineate Cut7 and Klp2s microtubule driving mechanics including directionality, speed and processivity providing insight into their in vivo roles.

Further information

All staff and students are welcome and there is no need to register in advance. If you have any queries, please contact Gemma Wild at G dot Wild at warwick dot ac dot uk

This research seminar is part of the Biomedical Cell Biology Seminar series, presented by the Division of Biomedical Cell Biology, Warwick Medical School.