Multiple kinesins induce tension for smooth cargo transport

Marco Tjioe, Saurabh Shukla, Rohit Vaidya, Alice Troitskaia, Carol Bookwalter, Kathleen M. Trybus, Yann R. Chemla, Paul R. Selvin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

How cargoes move within a crowded cell—over long distances and at speeds nearly the same as when moving on unimpeded pathway—has long been mysterious. Through an in vitro force-gliding assay, which involves measuring nanometer displacement and piconewtons of force, we show that multiple mammalian kinesin-1 (from 2-8) communicate in a team by inducing tension (up to 4 pN) on the cargo. Kinesins adopt two distinct states, with one-third slowing down the microtubule and two-thirds speeding it up. Resisting kinesins tend to come off more rapidly than, and speed up when pulled by driving kinesins, implying an asymmetric tug-of-war. Furthermore, kinesins dynamically interact to overcome roadblocks, occasionally combining their forces. Consequently, multiple kinesins acting as a team may play a significant role in facilitating smooth cargo motion in a dense environment. This is one of few cases in which single molecule behavior can be connected to ensemble behavior of multiple motors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere50974
JournaleLife
Volume8
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)

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  • Cite this

    Tjioe, M., Shukla, S., Vaidya, R., Troitskaia, A., Bookwalter, C., Trybus, K. M., Chemla, Y. R., & Selvin, P. R. (2019). Multiple kinesins induce tension for smooth cargo transport. eLife, 8, [e50974]. https://doi.org/10.7554/eLife.50974