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WCB is a protein that locates between the inner face of the plasma membrane and the sub-pellicular corset of microtubules in Trypanosoma brucei. We provide the molecular identity of WCB and bioinformatic analysis suggests that it possesses a C2 domain implicated in membrane/protein interactions and a highly charged region possessing characteristics of a putative tubulin-binding domain. Functional analyses via RNA interference (RNAi) depletion show that WCB is essential for cell morphogenesis. Depletion results in gross abnormalities in cell shape, mainly at the cytoskeletal/plasma membrane dynamic posterior end of the trypanosome. Failures in cytokinesis and zoid production are also evident. Furthermore, electron microscopy reveals that RNAi-induced trypanosomes lose local plasma membrane to microtubule corset integrity.

Original publication




Journal article



Publication Date





115 - 125


Amino Acid Sequence, Animals, Blotting, Western, Cell Membrane, Microscopy, Electron, Transmission, Microtubules, Molecular Sequence Data, Protozoan Proteins, Trypanosoma brucei brucei