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Abstract: Microtubules are highly regulated dynamic elements of the cytoskeleton ofeukaryotic cells. One of the regulation mechanisms observed in living cells isthe severing by the proteins katanin and spastin. We introduce a model for thedynamics of microtubules in the presence of randomly occurring severing events.Under the biologically motivated assumption that the newly created plus endundergoes a catastrophe, we investigate the steady state length distribution.We show that the presence of severing does not affect the number ofmicrotubules, regardless of the distribution of severing events. In the specialcase in which the microtubules cannot recover from the depolymerizing state norescue events we derive an analytical expression for the length distribution.In the general case we transform the problem into a single ODE that is solvednumerically.



Author: Simon H. Tindemans, Bela M. Mulder

Source: https://arxiv.org/



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