Purification of Tubulin from Porcine Brain

  • Christopher GellEmail author
  • Claire T. Friel
  • Barbara Borgonovo
  • David N. Drechsel
  • Anthony A. Hyman
  • Jonathon Howard
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 777)


Microtubules, polymers of the heterodimeric protein αβ-tubulin, give shape to cells and are the tracks for vesicle transport and chromosome segregation. In vitro assays to study microtubule functions and their regulation by microtubule-associated proteins require the availability of purified αβ-tubulin. In this chapter, we describe the process of purification of heterodimeric αβ-tubulin from porcine brain.

Key words

Tubulin Purification Porcine brain Microtubules Phosphocellulose 



The authors acknowledge the input of many people in the development of these protocols. Protocols published on the Web, especially by the Mitchison lab, have proved invaluable in the development of this protocol. In more recent years, many ­members, past and present, of the Howard, Diez, and Hyman labs at the MPI-CBG have been involved in performing this purification. In particular, we thank Regine Hartmann, Corina Braeuer, Marija Zanic, Gero Fink, Tony Ashford, and Andy Hunter. Finally, C.G. and C.T.F. thank Gary Brouhard, both for sharing the misery of getting this protocol up and running (again) and for promising (after “the incident”) never to run another PC column.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christopher Gell
    • 1
    Email author
  • Claire T. Friel
    • 2
  • Barbara Borgonovo
    • 1
  • David N. Drechsel
    • 1
  • Anthony A. Hyman
    • 1
  • Jonathon Howard
    • 1
  1. 1.Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and GeneticsDresdenGermany
  2. 2.School of Biomedical SciencesUniversity of NottinghamNottinghamUK

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