New Tetrahymena basal body protein components identify basal body domain structure

J Cell Biol. 2007 Sep 10;178(6):905-12. doi: 10.1083/jcb.200703109. Epub 2007 Sep 4.


Basal bodies organize the nine doublet microtubules found in cilia. Cilia are required for a variety of cellular functions, including motility and sensing stimuli. Understanding this biochemically complex organelle requires an inventory of the molecular components and the contribution each makes to the overall structure. We define a basal body proteome and determine the specific localization of basal body components in the ciliated protozoan Tetrahymena thermophila. Using a biochemical, bioinformatic, and genetic approach, we identify 97 known and candidate basal body proteins. 24 novel T. thermophila basal body proteins were identified, 19 of which were localized to the ultrastructural level, as seen by immunoelectron microscopy. Importantly, we find proteins from several structural domains within the basal body, allowing us to reveal how each component contributes to the overall organization. Thus, we present a high resolution localization map of basal body structure highlighting important new components for future functional studies.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Centrioles / metabolism*
  • Centrioles / ultrastructure
  • Cilia / metabolism
  • Cilia / ultrastructure
  • Microscopy, Electron, Transmission
  • Microtubules / metabolism
  • Microtubules / ultrastructure
  • Proteome / metabolism
  • Protozoan Proteins / metabolism*
  • Tetrahymena thermophila / metabolism*
  • Tetrahymena thermophila / ultrastructure


  • Proteome
  • Protozoan Proteins