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Date of Award
Thesis - Pacific Access Restricted
Master of Science (M.S.)
First Committee Member
Gregg D. Jongeward
Second Committee Member
Craig A. Vierra
Third Committee Member
Lisa A. Wrischnik
The regulation and maintenance of normal cell movements and shape play a vital role in the normal development and health of every living thing. The characterization of 6 zebrafish Zipper Interacting Protein Kinase homolog has helped to better understand how changes in cell cytoskeletal elements can lead to changes in cell shape and movement. Zebrafish are ideal model organisms for studying ZIPK because it has been previously shown that zebrafish ZIPK has closer sequence homology to human ZIPK than rodent ZIPK, and because zebrafish embryos are ideal for studying cell shape and movement in vivo. Using Whole Mount In Situ Hybridization we found that the zebrafish ZIPK is expressed during all stages of embryonic development, but most importantly during gastrulation when cell motility and changes in cell shape can best be studied. To determine where zebrafish ZIPK is expressed at the sub-cellular level, GFP-ZIPK and Flag-ZIPK clones were created and used for transfecting into Hek293T cells and Hela Cells. From these transfections, cell counterstaining and confocal microscopy we found that ZIPK is expressed ubiquitously throughout the cell, although mainly cytoplasmic. To study the effects on cell shape various ZIPK mutants were created through site-directed mutagenesis. These mutants were made to study the effects of the kinase domain of the protein, or other functional domains within the protein. From these studies it was shown that ZIPK does affect cell shape through changes in the actomyosin cytoskeleton resulting in aberrant cytoskeletal structures. Finally, we have also shown through phosphorylation assays that ZIPK phosphorylates and thus regulates MYPT-1, a scaffolding protein of the myosin protein phosphate complex and directly phosphorylates myosin light chain, both of which play a role in changes in cell shape and movement.
Basepayne, Tamara Lee. (2012). Characterization of the zebrafish zipper interacting protein kinase homolog. University of the Pacific, Thesis - Pacific Access Restricted. https://scholarlycommons.pacific.edu/uop_etds/817
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