WHIMP links the actin nucleation machinery to Src-family kinase signaling during protrusion and motility

Shail Kabrawala, Margaret D. Zimmer, Kenneth G. Campellone, Lillian Fritz-Laylin
2020 PLoS Genetics  
Cell motility is governed by cooperation between the Arp2/3 complex and nucleation-promoting factors from the Wiskott-Aldrich Syndrome Protein (WASP) family, which together assemble actin filament networks to drive membrane protrusion. Here we identify WHIMP (WAVE Homology In Membrane Protrusions) as a new member of the WASP family. The Whimp gene is encoded on the X-chromosome of a subset of mammals, including mice. Murine WHIMP promotes Arp2/3-dependent actin assembly, but is less potent than
more » ... is less potent than other nucleation factors. Nevertheless, WHIMP-mediated Arp2/3 activation enhances both plasma membrane ruffling and wound healing migration, whereas WHIMP depletion impairs protrusion and slows motility. WHIMP expression also increases Src-family kinase activity, and WHIMP-induced ruffles contain the additional nucleation-promoting factors WAVE1, WAVE2, and N-WASP, but not JMY or WASH. Perturbing the function of Src-family kinases, WAVE proteins, or Arp2/3 complex inhibits WHIMP-driven ruffling. These results suggest that WHIMP-associated actin assembly plays a direct role in membrane protrusion, but also results in feedback control of tyrosine kinase signaling to modulate the activation of multiple WASP-family members.
doi:10.1371/journal.pgen.1008694 pmid:32196488 fatcat:tffhjsje4bfqdjkxeyrqazg7cm