We studied the process of formation of stress fibres and involvement of phosphorylation of myosin-II during spreading of Swiss 3T3 fibroblasts. In cells that were allowed to spread for 1 h on a glass surface, circular bundles of actin and myosin-II filament were present. At 2-3 h after the plating, cells showed a polygonal and polarized shape. The proportion of the cells having circular bundles was decreased, whereas that of the cells with straight bundles of actin filaments was increased. At 4 h after the plating, cells were completely polarized and stress fibres were present at the periphery and the dorsal and ventral surfaces of the cells. Thus, spreading cells possessed different forms of actomyosin bundles corresponding to the cell shape. In circular bundles and stress fibres, myosin regulatory light chains were diphosphorylated. Formation of circular bundles and stress fibres was suppressed after the treatment of the cells with Y-27632, a Rho-kinase inhibitor, or blebbistatin, a myosin-II inhibitor. In digitonin-extracted cells, circular bundles as well as stress fibres contracted following the addition of Mg-ATP. These results suggest that circular bundles are contractile structures containing actin and phosphorylated myosin-II filaments, and the formation of circular bundles is regulated by Rho-kinase.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology