A myosin XI tail domain homologous to the yeast myosin vacuole-binding domain interacts with plastids and stromules in Nicotiana benthamiana

Mol Plant. 2009 Nov;2(6):1351-8. doi: 10.1093/mp/ssp094.


The actin cytoskeleton plays a role in mobility of many different organelles in plant cells, including chloroplasts, mitochondria, Golgi, and peroxisomes. While progress has been made in identifying the myosin motors involved in trafficking of various plant organelles, not all of the cargoes mobilized by different members of the myosin XI family have yet been identified. The involvement of myosins in chloroplast positioning and mitochondrial movement was demonstrated by expression of a virus-induced gene silencing (VIGS) construct in tobacco. When VIGS with two different conserved sequences from a myosin XI motor was performed in plants with either GFP-labeled plastids or mitochondria, chloroplast positioning in the dark was abnormal, and mitochondrial movement ceased. Because these and prior observations have implicated a role for myosins and the actin cytoskeleton in plastid and stromule movement, we searched for myosin tail domains that could associate with plastids and stromules. While a yellow fluorescent protein (YFP) fusion with the entire tail region of myosin XI-F was usually found only in the cytoplasm, we observed that an Arabidopsis or Nicotiana benthamiana YFP::myosin XI-F tail domain homologous to the yeast myo2p vacuole-binding domain associated with plastids and stromules after transient expression in N. benthamiana. Taken together, these observations implicate myosin motor proteins in dynamics of plastids and stromules.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Actins / metabolism
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Arabidopsis / genetics
  • Arabidopsis / metabolism
  • Binding Sites
  • Chloroplasts / metabolism
  • Gene Silencing
  • Genome, Plant
  • Golgi Apparatus / metabolism
  • Mitochondria / metabolism
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Myosins / chemistry
  • Myosins / genetics*
  • Myosins / metabolism*
  • Peroxisomes / metabolism
  • Plastids / genetics
  • Plastids / metabolism
  • Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Sequence Alignment
  • Sequence Homology
  • Tobacco / genetics
  • Tobacco / metabolism*
  • Vacuoles / metabolism


  • Actins
  • Myosins