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Type I myosins anchor actin assembly to the plasma membrane during clathrin-mediated endocytosis.


The actin cytoskeleton generates forces on membranes for a wide range of cellular and subcellular morphogenic events, from cell migration to cytokinesis and membrane trafficking. For each of these processes, filamentous actin (F-actin) interacts with membranes and exerts force through its assembly, its associated myosin motors, or both. These two modes of force generation are well studied in isolation, but how they are coordinated in cells is mysterious. During clathrin-mediated endocytosis, F-actin assembly initiated by the Arp2/3 complex and several proteins that compose the WASP/myosin complex generates the force necessary to deform the plasma membrane into a pit. Here we present evidence that type I myosin is the key membrane anchor for endocytic actin assembly factors in budding yeast. By mooring actin assembly factors to the plasma membrane, this myosin organizes endocytic actin networks and couples actin-generated forces to the plasma membrane to drive invagination and scission. Through this unexpected mechanism, myosin facilitates force generation independent of its motor activity.

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