Differential actin-dependent localization modulates the evolutionarily conserved activity of Shroom family proteins

J Biol Chem. 2006 Jul 21;281(29):20542-54. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M512463200. Epub 2006 May 8.


Shroom is an actin-associated determinant of cell morphology that is required for neural tube closure in both mice and frogs. Shroom regulates this process by causing apical constriction of epithelial cells via a pathway involving myosin II. Here we report on characterization of the Shroom-related proteins Apxl and KIAA1202 and their role in cell architecture. Shroom, Apxl, and KIAA1202 exhibit differing abilities to interact with the actin cytoskeleton. In fibroblasts, Shroom readily associates with actin stress fibers and induces bundling, Apxl is found on cortical actin, and KIAA1202 is localized to a cytoplasmic population of F-actin. In epithelial cells, Apxl and KIAA1202 do not induce apical constriction as Shroom does, but have the capacity to do so if targeted to the apical junctional complex. To determine whether the activity of Shroom-like proteins is conserved in invertebrates, we have tested the ability of the lone Shroomrelated protein in Drosophila, CG8603, to activate the constriction pathway. A chimeric protein consisting of the Shroom targeting domain and the Drosophila protein elicits constriction. Finally, we show that Apxl is involved in regulating the cytoskeletal organization and architecture of endothelial cells. We predict that the ability of Shroom-like proteins to regulate cellular morphology is conserved in evolution and is regulated in part by subcellular localization.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Actins / metabolism
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Binding Sites
  • Cell Line
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • Conserved Sequence
  • Dogs
  • Endothelium, Vascular / physiology
  • Evolution, Molecular*
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Invertebrates
  • Mice
  • Microfilament Proteins / genetics*
  • Microfilament Proteins / metabolism
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Muscle, Skeletal / physiology
  • Recombinant Proteins / metabolism
  • Sequence Alignment
  • Sequence Homology, Amino Acid
  • Vertebrates


  • Actins
  • Microfilament Proteins
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • Shrm protein, mouse