Thumbnail Image

Investigation of acetate sensitivity within shf1 Chlamydomonas mutants

Dutcher, Avery
Miller, Maite
Herath, Dilani
Wilson, Nedra
Cilia and flagella are essential for human health. Defects in the assembly and function of these organelles are associated with a collection of disorders called ciliopathies. Studies have suggested that regulation of ciliary size is associated with external environmental factors. Although TOR signaling pathway has recently been implicated as playing a pivotal role in linking the cellular environment with determination of cell and organelle size, additional biological pathways involved in this process remain largely unknown. Short flagellar (shf) mutants of Chlamydomonas assemble flagella that are half the length of wild-type cells. Consistent with the observation that ciliary length and cell size are interconnected, shf1 cell volume is increased compared to wild-type cells. Interestingly, shf1 mutants are aflagellate when grown in the presence of acetate. To learn more about the acetate sensitivity, we examined the ultrastructure of shf1 mutants following the addition of acetate. Microscopic analysis revealed notable deformities in the flagellar ultrastructure. Currently, we are using a biochemical and global proteomic approach to learn more about the function of the SHF1 gene product.