Characterisation of IRTKS, a novel IRSp53/MIM family actin regulator with distinct filament bundling properties.

TH Millard, John Dawson, Laura Machesky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

57 Citations (Scopus)


IRSp53 is a scaffold protein that contains an IRSp53/MIM homology domain (IMD) that bundles actin filaments and interacts with the small GTPase Rac. IRSp53 also binds to the small GTPase Cdc42 and to Scar/WAVE and Mena/VASP proteins to regulate the actin cytoskeleton. We have characterised a novel IMD-containing protein, insulin receptor tyrosine kinase substrate (IRTKS), which has widespread tissue distribution, is a substrate for the insulin receptor and binds Rac. Unlike IRSp53, IRTKS does not interact with Cdc42. Expression of IRTKS induces clusters of short actin bundles rather than filopodia-like protrusions. This difference may be attributable to a short carboxyl-terminal (Ct) extension present on IRTKS, which resembles a WASP-homology 2 (WH2) motif. Addition of the Ct extension to IRSp53 causes an apparent shortening of bundles induced by the IMD in vitro, and in cultured cells, suggesting that the Ct extension of IRTKS modulates the organising activity of the IMD. Lastly, we could not detect actin monomer sequestration by the Ct extension of IRTKS as would be expected with a conventional WH2 motif, but it did interact with actin filaments.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1663-72
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Cell Science
Issue numberPt 9
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2007


  • actin
  • filopodia
  • cytoskeleton
  • motility
  • GTPase


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