Fast transport of neurofilament protein along microtubules in squid axoplasm

V. Prahlad, B. T. Helfand, G. M. Langford, R. D. Vale, R. D. Goldman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

101 Scopus citations


Using squid axoplasm as a model system, we have visualized the fast transport of non-filamentous neurofilament protein particles along axonal microtubules. This transport occurs at speeds of 0.5-1.0 μm/second and the majority of neurofilament particles stain with kinesin antibody. These observations demonstrate, for the first time, that fast (0.5-1.0 μm/second) transport of neurofilament proteins occurs along microtubules. In addition, our studies suggest that neurofilament protein can be transported as non-membrane bound, nonfilamentous subunits along axons, and that the transport is kinesin-dependent. Microtubule-based fast transport might therefore provide a mechanism for the distribution and turnover of neurofilament, and perhaps other cytoskeletal proteins, throughout neurons.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3939-3946
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of cell science
Issue number22
StatePublished - Dec 1 2000
Externally publishedYes



  • Axonal transport
  • Cytoskeleton
  • Intermediate filament
  • Kinesin
  • Microtubule
  • Neurofilament

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology

Cite this

Prahlad, V., Helfand, B. T., Langford, G. M., Vale, R. D., & Goldman, R. D. (2000). Fast transport of neurofilament protein along microtubules in squid axoplasm. Journal of cell science, 113(22), 3939-3946.