The microtubule cytoskeleton regulates cell polarity by spatially organizing membrane trafficking and signaling processes. In epithelial cells, microtubules form parallel arrays aligned along the apico–basal axis, and recent work has demonstrated that the members of CAMSAP/Patronin family control apical tethering of microtubule minus ends. Here, we show that in mammalian intestinal epithelial cells, the spectraplakin ACF7 (also known as MACF1) specifically binds to CAMSAP3 and is required for the apical localization of CAMSAP3-decorated microtubule minus ends. Loss of ACF7 but not of CAMSAP3 or its homolog CAMSAP2 affected the formation of polarized epithelial cysts in three-dimensional cultures. In short-term epithelial polarization assays, knockout of CAMSAP3, but not of CAMSAP2, caused microtubule re-organization into a more radial centrosomal array, redistribution of Rab11-positive (also known as Rab11A) endosomes from the apical cell surface to the pericentrosomal region and inhibition of actin brush border formation at the apical side of the cell. We conclude that ACF7 is an important regulator of apico–basal polarity in mammalian intestinal cells and that a radial centrosome-centered microtubule organization can act as an inhibitor of epithelial polarity.
The authors declare no competing or financial interests.
I.N., L.C.K. and A.A. designed experiments and wrote the paper. A.A. coordinated the project. I.N., Q.L., M.B., S.R. and M.M. generated tools and performed the experiments, W.N., S.H. and K.J. generated tools.
This study was supported by the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research (Nederlandse Organisatie voor Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek) ALW Open program (grant 822.02.002) and the CW ECHO (grant 711.015.005).
Supplementary information available online at http://jcs.biologists.org/lookup/doi/10.1242/jcs.194878.supplemental
- Received July 8, 2016.
- Accepted October 7, 2016.
- © 2016. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd