The Contractome

We are very interested in the regulation of actomyosin contractility in non-muscle cells. Actomyosin contractility plays an important role in many cellular processes, from cell division, spreading and migration, through adhesion and modulation of the extracellular matrix, to intracellular transport and nuclear structure and function. In collaboration with Chen Luxenburg from Tel Aviv University (http://www.luxenburglab.com/) we recently assembled a comprehensive inventory of cellular functions of actomyosin contractility and a parts list of proteins involved in either the structure or regulation of contractility in non-muscle cells. We then used bioinformatics and literature mining to obtain all the known interactions between the different proteins. We nicknamed the resulting network of interacting proteins the Contractome.

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We trust this resource will be useful for teaching and for researchers in the community. It is already proving to be a useful guide in our research into the regulation of contractility in mammalian cells and in C. elegans.