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TitleThe multi-scale architecture of mammalian sperm flagella and implications for ciliary motility.
Journal, issue, pagesEMBO J, Vol. 40, Issue 7, Page e107410, Year 2021
Publish dateApr 1, 2021
AuthorsMiguel Ricardo Leung / Marc C Roelofs / Ravi Teja Ravi / Paula Maitan / Heiko Henning / Min Zhang / Elizabeth G Bromfield / Stuart C Howes / Bart M Gadella / Hermes Bloomfield-Gadêlha / Tzviya Zeev-Ben-Mordehai /
PubMed AbstractMotile cilia are molecular machines used by a myriad of eukaryotic cells to swim through fluid environments. However, available molecular structures represent only a handful of cell types, limiting ...Motile cilia are molecular machines used by a myriad of eukaryotic cells to swim through fluid environments. However, available molecular structures represent only a handful of cell types, limiting our understanding of how cilia are modified to support motility in diverse media. Here, we use cryo-focused ion beam milling-enabled cryo-electron tomography to image sperm flagella from three mammalian species. We resolve in-cell structures of centrioles, axonemal doublets, central pair apparatus, and endpiece singlets, revealing novel protofilament-bridging microtubule inner proteins throughout the flagellum. We present native structures of the flagellar base, which is crucial for shaping the flagellar beat. We show that outer dense fibers are directly coupled to microtubule doublets in the principal piece but not in the midpiece. Thus, mammalian sperm flagella are ornamented across scales, from protofilament-bracing structures reinforcing microtubules at the nano-scale to accessory structures that impose micron-scale asymmetries on the entire assembly. Our structures provide vital foundations for linking molecular structure to ciliary motility and evolution.
External linksEMBO J / PubMed:33694216 / PubMed Central
MethodsEM (subtomogram averaging)
Resolution19 - 50 Å
Structure data

EMDB-12067:
triplet microtubule from the proximal region of the pig sperm proximal centriole
Method: EM (subtomogram averaging) / Resolution: 30 Å

EMDB-12068:
singlet microtubules from the pig sperm endpiece
Method: EM (subtomogram averaging) / Resolution: 19 Å

EMDB-12069:
the central pair apparatus from pig sperm flagella
Method: EM (subtomogram averaging) / Resolution: 36 Å

EMDB-12070:
the 96-nm axonemal repeat from pig sperm flagella (whole population)
Method: EM (subtomogram averaging) / Resolution: 37 Å

EMDB-12071:
the 96-nm axonemal repeat from pig sperm flagella (+ODF class)
Method: EM (subtomogram averaging) / Resolution: 49 Å

EMDB-12072:
the 96-nm axonemal repeat from pig sperm flagella (-ODF class)
Method: EM (subtomogram averaging) / Resolution: 49 Å

EMDB-12076:
central pair apparatus from horse sperm flagella
Method: EM (subtomogram averaging) / Resolution: 34 Å

EMDB-12077:
singlet microtubules from the horse sperm endpiece
Method: EM (subtomogram averaging) / Resolution: 19 Å

EMDB-12078:
the 96-nm axonemal repeat from horse sperm flagella (whole population)
Method: EM (subtomogram averaging) / Resolution: 40 Å

EMDB-12079:
the 96-nm axonemal repeat from horse sperm flagella (+ODF class)
Method: EM (subtomogram averaging) / Resolution: 49 Å

EMDB-12131:
subtomogram average of the 96-nm axonemal repeat from horse sperm flagella (-ODF class)
Method: EM (subtomogram averaging) / Resolution: 50 Å

EMDB-12132:
singlet microtubules from the mouse sperm endpiece
Method: EM (subtomogram averaging) / Resolution: 30 Å

EMDB-12133:
the 96-nm axonemal repeat from mouse sperm flagella (whole population)
Method: EM (subtomogram averaging) / Resolution: 40 Å

EMDB-12134:
the 96-nm axonemal repeat from mouse sperm flagella (+ODF class)
Method: EM (subtomogram averaging) / Resolution: 50 Å

EMDB-12135:
the 96-nm axonemal repeat from mouse sperm flagella (-ODF class)
Method: EM (subtomogram averaging) / Resolution: 50 Å

EMDB-12136:
the central pair apparatus from mouse sperm flagella
Method: EM (subtomogram averaging) / Resolution: 49 Å

Source
  • Sus scrofa domesticus (domestic pig)
  • Equus caballus (horse)
  • Mus musculus (house mouse)

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