Internetwork Competition for Monomers Governs Actin Cytoskeleton Organization

Nat Rev Mol Cell Biol. 2016 Dec;17(12):799-810. doi: 10.1038/nrm.2016.106. Epub 2016 Sep 14.


Cells precisely control the formation of dynamic actin cytoskeleton networks to coordinate fundamental processes, including motility, division, endocytosis and polarization. To support these functions, actin filament networks must be assembled, maintained and disassembled at the correct time and place, and with proper filament organization and dynamics. Regulation of the extent of filament network assembly and of filament network organization has been largely attributed to the coordinated activation of actin assembly factors through signalling cascades. Here, we discuss an intriguing model in which actin monomer availability is limiting and competition between homeostatic actin cytoskeletal networks for actin monomers is an additional crucial regulatory mechanism that influences the density and size of different actin networks, thereby contributing to the organization of the cellular actin cytoskeleton.

MeSH terms

  • Actin Cytoskeleton / physiology*
  • Actin Cytoskeleton / ultrastructure
  • Actins / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Binding, Competitive
  • Homeostasis
  • Humans
  • Protein Binding
  • Protein Interaction Maps
  • Protein Multimerization


  • Actins