Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Stretching helices help keep muscles together

Date:
February 15, 2012
Source:
European Molecular Biology Laboratory
Summary:
Scientists have discovered that the elastic part of myomesin, a protein that links muscle filaments, can stretch to two and a half times its original length, unfolding in a way that was hitherto unknown.

Myomesin stretches to 2.5 times its length.
Credit: EMBL/Wilmanns

A protein called myomesin does its impression of Mr. Fantastic, the leader of the Fantastic Four of comic book fame, who performed incredible feats by stretching his body. Scientists at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in Hamburg, Germany, have discovered that the elastic part of this protein can stretch to two and a half times its original length, unfolding in a way that was hitherto unknown.

Related Articles


In muscle, the stretchy tails of two myomesin molecules come together, forming an elastic bridge that keeps a bundle of muscle fibres together. Each tail looks like a set of pearls -- called immunoglobulin-like domains (pink, blue) -- spaced out along an elastic band of structures known as alpha helices (green). When the protein is pulled, as it is when muscles contract and extend, the helices unfold.

To obtain this unprecedentedly detailed view of myomesin's three-dimensional structure and discover the secret behind its stretchiness, the scientists combined an array of techniques: X-ray crystallography, small angle X-ray scattering, electron microscopy and atomic force microscopy.

"Next, we would like to determine the structure of the complete myomesin filament," says Matthias Wilmanns, Head of EMBL Hamburg, who led the work, "and to find out about the protein's function in living organisms, starting with animal models."

The work, recently published in PLoS Biology, was conducted in collaboration with scientists from the Technical University of Munich, in Germany, and The Institute of Cancer Research, in the UK.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by European Molecular Biology Laboratory. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Nikos Pinotsis, Spyros D. Chatziefthimiou, Felix Berkemeier, Fabienne Beuron, Irene M. Mavridis, Petr V. Konarev, Dmitri I. Svergun, Edward Morris, Matthias Rief, Matthias Wilmanns. Superhelical Architecture of the Myosin Filament-Linking Protein Myomesin with Unusual Elastic Properties. PLoS Biology, 2012; 10 (2): e1001261 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pbio.1001261

Cite This Page:

European Molecular Biology Laboratory. "Stretching helices help keep muscles together." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 February 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/02/120215123949.htm>.
European Molecular Biology Laboratory. (2012, February 15). Stretching helices help keep muscles together. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/02/120215123949.htm
European Molecular Biology Laboratory. "Stretching helices help keep muscles together." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/02/120215123949.htm (accessed December 21, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) In Yarumal, a village in N. Colombia, Alzheimer's has ravaged a disproportionately large number of families. A genetic "curse" that may pave the way for research on how to treat the disease that claims a new victim every four seconds. Duration: 02:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Monarch Butterflies Descend Upon Mexican Forest During Annual Migration

Monarch Butterflies Descend Upon Mexican Forest During Annual Migration

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Dec. 19, 2014) Millions of monarch butterflies begin to descend onto Mexico as part of their annual migration south. Rough Cut (no reporter narration) Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Protein-Filled Foods to Energize You for the New Year

The Best Protein-Filled Foods to Energize You for the New Year

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) The new year is coming and nothing will energize you more for 2015 than protein-filled foods. Fitness and nutrition expert John Basedow (@JohnBasedow) gives his favorite high protein foods that will help you build muscle, lose fat and have endless energy. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Birds Might Be Better Meteorologists Than Us

Birds Might Be Better Meteorologists Than Us

Newsy (Dec. 19, 2014) A new study suggests a certain type of bird was able to sense a tornado outbreak that moved through the U.S. a day before it hit. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins