EB1 reveals mobile microtubule nucleation sites in Arabidopsis

Nat Cell Biol. 2003 Nov;5(11):967-71. doi: 10.1038/ncb1057. Epub 2003 Oct 12.


In plants, it is unclear how dispersed cortical microtubules are nucleated, polarized and organized in the absence of centrosomes. In Arabidopsis thaliana cells, expression of a fusion between the microtubule-end-binding protein AtEB1a and green fluorescent protein (GFP) results in labelling of spindle poles, where minus ends gather. During interphase, AtEB1a-GFP labels the microtubule plus end as a comet, but also marks the minus end as a site from which microtubules can grow and shrink. These minus-end nucleation sites are mobile, explaining how the cortical array can redistribute during the cell cycle and supporting the idea of a flexible centrosome in plants.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Arabidopsis / cytology*
  • Arabidopsis / metabolism
  • Arabidopsis / ultrastructure
  • Arabidopsis Proteins / genetics
  • Arabidopsis Proteins / physiology*
  • Base Sequence
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • DNA Primers
  • Microscopy, Confocal
  • Microtubules / ultrastructure*
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins / genetics


  • Arabidopsis Proteins
  • DNA Primers
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins