Electron tomography of insect flight muscle in rigor and AMPPNP at 23 degrees C.


Journal Article

Treatment of rigor fibers of insect flight muscle (IFM) with AMPPNP at 23 degrees C causes a 70% drop in tension with little change in stiffness. In order to visualize the changes in crossbridge conformation and distribution that give rise to the mechanical response, we have produced three-dimensional reconstructions by tomography of both rigor and AMPPNP-treated muscle that do not average the repeating motifs of crossbridges, and thereby retain information on variability of crossbridge structure and distribution. Tomograms can be averaged when display of only the regular features is wanted. Tomograms of rigor IFM show double-headed lead and single-headed rear crossbridges. Tomograms of IFM treated with AMPPNP at 23 degrees C reveal many double-headed and some single-headed "lead" bridges but few crossbridges corresponding to the rear bridges of rigor. Instead, new non-rigor forms of variably angled crossbridges are found bound to actin sites not labeled with myosin heads in rigor. This indicates that the rear bridges of rigor have redistributed during the transition from rigor to the AMPPNP state, which could explain the maintenance of rigor stiffness despite the loss of tension. Comparison of in situ crossbridges in tomograms of rigor with atomic model of acto-S1, the complex formed by myosin subfragment 1 and actin, reveals that the regulatory domain of S1 would require significant bending and realignment to fit into both types of rigor crossbridges. The modifications are particularly significant for the rear bridges and suggest that differential strain in the regulatory domain of rear bridges may be the basis for their detachment and redistribution upon binding AMPPNP. Similar comparison using lead-type crossbridges in AMPPNP reveals departures from the rigor acto-S1 atomic model that include azimuthal straightening and a slight M-ward bending in the regulatory domain. Both the motor and regulatory domains of the new non-rigor crossbridges differ from those in the atomic model of acto-S1. A new crossbridge motif identified in AMPPNP-treated muscle consists of paired rigor-like and non-rigor crossbridges and suggests possible transitions in the myosin working stroke.

Full Text

Cited Authors

  • Schmitz, H; Reedy, MC; Reedy, MK; Tregear, RT; Winkler, H; Taylor, KA

Published Date

  • November 29, 1996

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 264 / 2

Start / End Page

  • 279 - 301

PubMed ID

  • 8951377

Pubmed Central ID

  • 8951377

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0022-2836

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1006/jmbi.1996.0641


  • eng

Conference Location

  • England