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Keywords:

  • dynamin;
  • endocytosis;
  • guanylate binding proteins;
  • immunity-related GTPases;
  • Mx proteins

Abstract

Recently, Gao et al. and Chappie et al. elucidated the crystal structures of the polytetrameric stalk domain of the dynamin-like virus resistance protein, MxA, and of the G-domain dimer of the large, membrane-deforming GTPase, dynamin, respectively. Combined, they provide a hypothetical oligomeric structure for the complete dynamin protein. Here, it is discussed how the oligomers are expected to form and how they participate in dynamin mediated vesicle fission during the process of endocytosis. The proposed oligomeric structure is compared with the novel mechanochemical model of dynamin function recently proposed by Bashkirov et al. and Pucadyil and Schmid. In conclusion, the new model of the dynamin oligomer has the potential to explain how short self-limiting fissogenic dynamin assemblies are formed and how concerted GTP hydrolysis is achieved. The oligomerisation of two other dynamin superfamily proteins, the guanylate binding proteins (GBPs) and the immunity-related GTPases (IRGs), is addressed briefly.