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Human erythrocytes: cytoskeleton and its origin

  • Ayelén D. Nigra
  • Cesar H. Casale
  • Verónica S. SantanderEmail author
Review
  • 109 Downloads

Abstract

In the last few years, erythrocytes have emerged as the main determinant of blood rheology. In mammals, these cells are devoid of nuclei and are, therefore, unable to divide. Consequently, all circulating erythrocytes come from erythropoiesis, a process in the bone marrow in which several modifications are induced in the expression of membrane and cytoskeletal proteins, and different vertical and horizontal interactions are established between them. Cytoskeleton components play an important role in this process, which explains why they and the interaction between them have been the focus of much recent research. Moreover, in mature erythrocytes, the cytoskeleton integrity is also essential, because the cytoskeleton confers remarkable deformability and stability on the erythrocytes, thus enabling them to undergo deformation in microcirculation. Defects in the cytoskeleton produce changes in erythrocyte deformability and stability, affecting cell viability and rheological properties. Such abnormalities are seen in different pathologies of special interest, such as different types of anemia, hypertension, and diabetes, among others. This review highlights the main findings in mammalian erythrocytes and their progenitors regarding the presence, conformation and function of the three main components of the cytoskeleton: actin, intermediate filaments, and tubulin.

Keywords

Erythrocytes Erythropoiesis Cytoskeleton Tubulin Actin Intermediate filaments 

Notes

Acknowledgements

This study was supported by grants from Agencia Nacional de Promoción Científica y Tecnología (# 141/13), Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas, and Secretaría de Ciencia y Técnica de la Universidad Nacional de Río Cuarto. This review is dedicated to the memory of Marina Rafaela Amaiden, who will remain forever in our hearts.

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ayelén D. Nigra
    • 1
    • 2
  • Cesar H. Casale
    • 1
  • Verónica S. Santander
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Departamento de Biología Molecular, Facultad de Ciencias Exactas Físico-Químicas y NaturalesUniversidad Nacional de Río CuartoRío CuartoArgentina
  2. 2.Departamento de Química Biológica, Facultad de Ciencias Químicas, Centro de Investigaciones en Química Biológica de Córdoba (CIQUIBIC), UNC-CONICETUniversidad Nacional de CórdobaCórdobaArgentina

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