We characterized nine monoclonal antibodies that bind to the heavy chain of Acanthamoeba myosin-IA. Eight of these antibodies bind to myosin-IB and eight cross-react with Acanthamoeba myosin-II. All but one of the antibodies bind to a 30-kD chymotryptic peptide of myosin-IA that derives from the COOH terminus of the molecule, and to tryptic peptides as small as 17 kD, hence these epitopes are clustered closely together on the heavy chain. None of the antibodies prevent heavy chain phosphorylation by myosin-I heavy chain kinase. One antibody inhibits the K+-EDTA ATPase activity and three antibodies inhibit the actin-activated Mg++-ATPase activity of myosin-I under the set of conditions that we tested. When fluorescent antibody staining of both whole cells and isolated nuclei is done, several of these monoclonal antibodies react strongly with nuclei. These antibodies also stain the cytoplasmic matrix, especially the cortex near the plasma membrane. All nine of the monoclonal antibodies bind to polypeptides of 30-34 kD that are highly enriched in nuclei isolated from Acanthamoeba. There is no myosin-I in the isolated nuclei, so the 30-34-kD polypeptides, not myosin-I, are responsible for the nuclear staining.

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