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The Journal of cell biology

Plectin 1f scaffolding at the sarcolemma of dystrophic (mdx) muscle fibers through multiple interactions with beta-dystroglycan.


PMID 17389230

Abstract

In skeletal muscle, the cytolinker plectin is prominently expressed at Z-disks and the sarcolemma. Alternative splicing of plectin transcripts gives rise to more than eight protein isoforms differing only in small N-terminal sequences (5-180 residues), four of which (plectins 1, 1b, 1d, and 1f) are found at substantial levels in muscle tissue. Using plectin isoform-specific antibodies and isoform expression constructs, we show the differential regulation of plectin isoforms during myotube differentiation and their localization to different compartments of muscle fibers, identifying plectins 1 and 1f as sarcolemma-associated isoforms, whereas plectin 1d localizes exclusively to Z-disks. Coimmunoprecipitation and in vitro binding assays using recombinant protein fragments revealed the direct binding of plectin to dystrophin (utrophin) and beta-dystroglycan, the key components of the dystrophin-glycoprotein complex. We propose a model in which plectin acts as a universal mediator of desmin intermediate filament anchorage at the sarcolemma and Z-disks. It also explains the plectin phenotype observed in dystrophic skeletal muscle of mdx mice and Duchenne muscular dystrophy patients.