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Arrested in Glass: Actin within Sophisticated Architectures of Biosilica in Sponges

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Simon,  Paul
Paul Simon, Chemical Metal Science, Max Planck Institute for Chemical Physics of Solids, Max Planck Society;

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Jesionowski,  Teofil
Chemical Metal Science, Max Planck Institute for Chemical Physics of Solids, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Ehrlich, H., Luczak, M., Ziganshin, R., Mikšík, I., Wysokowski, M., Simon, P., et al. (2022). Arrested in Glass: Actin within Sophisticated Architectures of Biosilica in Sponges. Advanced Science, 2105059, pp. 1-10. doi:10.1002/advs.202105059.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-000A-155D-7
Abstract
Actin is a fundamental member of an ancient superfamily of structural intracellular proteins and plays a crucial role in cytoskeleton dynamics, ciliogenesis, phagocytosis, and force generation in both prokaryotes and eukaryotes. It is shown that actin has another function in metazoans: patterning biosilica deposition, a role that has spanned over 500 million years. Species of glass sponges (Hexactinellida) and demosponges (Demospongiae), representatives of the first metazoans, with a broad diversity of skeletal structures with hierarchical architecture unchanged since the late Precambrian, are studied. By etching their skeletons, organic templates dominated by individual F-actin filaments, including branched fibers and the longest, thickest actin fiber bundles ever reported, are isolated. It is proposed that these actin-rich filaments are not the primary site of biosilicification, but this highly sophisticated and multi-scale form of biomineralization in metazoans is ptterned.