The Role of +TIP Proteins in the Regulation of End-Binding Protein Localization
Microtubule (MT) plus-end tracking proteins (+TIPs) are a specialized group of proteins that preferentially localize to growing MT plus-ends. End-binding proteins (EBs) are master regulators of the +TIP network, which fine-tunes MT dynamics and plays a role in many MT-based processes. Recent work has revealed that EBs localize to MT tips by sensing the nucleotide-state and specific conformation of tubulin at MT plus-ends. Currently, it is unknown whether EBs are regulated by other +TIPs. In this study, we are investigating the role of CLIP-associated proteins (CLASPs) in the regulation of EB plus-end localization (Developmental Cell 2014). Importantly, our work has revealed CLASPs as the first example of another +TIP protein regulating the localization and dynamics of EBs at MTs. We are currently working to characterize this CLASP-dependent mechanism in collaboration with Marija Zanic's lab at Vanderbilt University .