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Biomedical Cell Biology seminar: Actin + Oocytes: Old Love - New Affairs

At a Glance
Date: Wednesday 25 January 2012
Time: 1.30-2.30pm
Location: T0.08, Clinical Trials Unit, Warwick Medical School
Open To: Staff and students
Cost: Free
Summary: Seminar by Dr Melina Schuh on

'Actin + Oocytes: Old Love - New Affairs'

Dr Melina Schuh, MRC Laboratory of Molecular Medicine, Cambridge, will present this research seminar, speaking on 'Actin + Oocytes: Old Love - New Affairs'.


Intracellular transport is vital for the function, survival and architecture of every eukaryotic cell. Long-range transport in animal cells is thought to depend exclusively on microtubule tracks. This study reveals an unexpected actin-dependent but microtubule-independent mechanism for long-range transport of vesicles in mouse oocytes. Vesicles organize their own actin tracks by recruiting the actin nucleation factors Spire1, Spire2 and Formin-2, which assemble an extensive actin network from the vesicles' surfaces. The network connects the vesicles with one another and with the plasma membrane. Vesicles move directionally along these connections in a myosin-Vb-dependent manner to converge and to reach the cell surface. The overall outward-directed movement of the vesicle-actin network is driven by recruitment of vesicles to the plasma membrane in the periphery of the oocyte. Being organized in a dynamic vesicle-actin network allows vesicles to move in a local random manner and a global directed manner at the same time: they can reach any position in the cytoplasm, but also move directionally to the cell surface as a collective. Thus, collective movement within a network is a powerful and flexible mode of vesicle transport.

Dr Schuh will also talk about the actin-dependent mechanism of asymmetric spindle positioning in mouse oocytes.

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.