Polymer motors: Pushing out the front and pulling up the back

Alex Mogilner, George Oster

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Mechanical work in cells is performed by specialized motor proteins that operate in a continuous mechanochemical cycle. Less complex, but still efficient, 'one-shot' motors evolved based on the assembly and disassembly of polymers. We review the mechanisms of pushing and pulling by actin and microtubule filaments and the organizational principles of actin networks. We show how these polymer force generators are used for the propulsion of intracellular pathogens, protrusion of lamellipodia and mitotic movements. We discuss several examples of cellular forces generated by the assembly and disassembly of polymer gels.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalCurrent Biology
Volume13
Issue number18
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 16 2003

Fingerprint

back (body region)
polymers
Polymers
actin
Actins
pseudopodia
Pseudopodia
generators (equipment)
Pathogens
Actin Cytoskeleton
Microtubules
Propulsion
microtubules
Gels
gels
pathogens
Proteins
proteins
cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)

Cite this

Polymer motors : Pushing out the front and pulling up the back. / Mogilner, Alex; Oster, George.

In: Current Biology, Vol. 13, No. 18, 16.09.2003.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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