Tertiary amine local anesthetics (dibucaine, tetracaine, procaine) reversibly affect the morphology of untransformed BALB/3T3 cells and the organization of membrane-associated cytoskeletal elements. In the presence of these drugs cells contract and become rounded in shape with the appearance of numerous surface "blebs." Electron microscope examination of anesthetic-treated cells revealed significant reductions in plasma membrane-associated microtubules and microfilaments and/or their plasma membrane attachment. The relationship of the findings on local anesthetic-induced changes in cellular cytoskeletal systems is discussed in relation to previous proposals on plasma membrane organization and control of cell surface receptor topography and mobility.
Effects of local anesthetics on cell morphology and membrane-associated cytoskeletal organization in BALB/3T3 cells.
G L Nicolson, J R Smith, G Poste; Effects of local anesthetics on cell morphology and membrane-associated cytoskeletal organization in BALB/3T3 cells.. J Cell Biol 1 February 1976; 68 (2): 395–402. doi: https://doi.org/10.1083/jcb.68.2.395
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