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 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 homologue CAMSAP2 affected the formation of polarized epithelial cysts in 3D cultures. In short-term epithelial polarization assays, the knock-out of CAMSAP3, but not of CAMSAP2 caused microtubule re-organization into a more radial centrosomal array, redistribution of Rab11 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.
- Received July 8, 2016.
- Accepted October 7, 2016.
- © 2016. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd