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Bases moléculaires du mouvement flagellaire

Molecular basis of axonemal movement

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Au cours de l’évolution, pour pouvoir se déplacer dans le milieu qui les entoure, les cellules ont développé des structures spécialisées: les cils et les flagelles. Ces structures qui produisent des successions d’ondes symétriques ou asymétriques, contiennent la même “machinerie” interne, l’axonème.

L’axonème est composé généralement de neuf doublets de microtubules externes entourant une paire centrale de microtubules. Le battement résulte d’un phénomène actif, dû à l’attachement temporaire des dynéine-ATPases d’un doublet externe au doublet adjacent. II se produit alors un glissement entre les doublets qui est transformé en courbure par les résistances de certaines structures axonémale. Les mécanismes moléculaires impliqués dans la génération du vouvement sont les même dans les cils et les flagelles, bien que les voies de contrôle de ces mécanismes puissent être différents.

Cette revue se présente en deux parties: la première est un rappel sur la composition de l’axonème incluant les récentes découvertes aux niveaux ultrastructural et biochimique, la seconde porte sur la mécanique du battement axonémal et présente le rôle de certaines des structures ou des protéines dans la génération du battement.

Abstract

Because of their small size, cells encounter fundamentally different physical constraints when they want to move in their surrounding media than when aquatic animals want to move in water. For cells, external viscosity is the main resistance while inertia plays almost no role; then in order to move, cells will have to produce continually a force against the viscous media. During the evolution, eukaryotic cells have gained specialised structures to efficiently propel them: cilia and flagella. These thread-like appendages produce repetitive beating which consists in propagation of waves from the bottom to the tip of these structures. Cilia generally show an asymmetrical beating while flagella have a more symmetrical bend propagation. Cilia and flagella contain an almost identical internal complex machinery: the axoneme. As a consequence, the mechanisms involved in the generation of the movement are identical although the precise regulation may be different.

In this paper, the reader will find a review of the molecular organisation of the ciliary and flagellar axoneme and of the role played by some of the constituting elements on the generation of the movement.

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Gatti, J., Dacheux, J. Bases moléculaires du mouvement flagellaire. Androl. 5, 15–30 (1995) doi:10.1007/BF03034299

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Mots clés

  • flagelles
  • cils
  • dyneines
  • battement flagellaire
  • spermatozoïdes

Key words

  • axoneme
  • dynein
  • cilia
  • flagella
  • spermatozoa
  • movement