Leiomodin-2 is an antagonist of tropomodulin-1 at the pointed end of the thin filaments in cardiac muscle

Takehiro Tsukada, Christopher T. Pappas, Natalia Moroz, Parker B. Antin, Alla S. Kostyukova, Carol C. Gregorio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

81 Scopus citations


Regulation of actin filament assembly is essential for efficient contractile activity in striated muscle. Leiomodin is an actin-binding protein and homolog of the pointed-end capping protein, tropomodulin. These proteins are structurally similar, sharing a common domain organization that includes two actin-binding sites. Leiomodin also contains a unique C-terminal extension that has a third actin-binding WH2 domain. Recently, the striated-muscle-specific isoform of leiomodin (Lmod2) was reported to be an actin nucleator in cardiomyocytes. Here, we have identified a function of Lmod2 in the regulation of thin filament lengths. We show that Lmod2 localizes to the pointed ends of thin filaments, where it competes for binding with tropomodulin-1 (Tmod1). Overexpression of Lmod2 results in loss of Tmod1 assembly and elongation of the thin filaments from their pointed ends. The Lmod2 WH2 domain is required for lengthening because its removal results in a molecule that caps the pointed ends similarly to Tmod1. Furthermore, Lmod2 transcripts are first detected in the heart after it has begun to beat, suggesting that the primary function of Lmod2 is to maintain thin filament lengths in the mature heart. Thus, Lmod2 antagonizes the function of Tmod1, and together, these molecules might fine-tune thin filament lengths.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3136-3145
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Cell Science
Issue number18
StatePublished - Sep 15 2010


  • Cardiomyocytes
  • Leiomodin
  • Lmod2
  • Thin filament
  • Tropomodulin
  • WH2 domain

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology


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