Mild treatment with trypsin causes a radical change in the heavy meromyosin (HMM) binding properties of intermediate filaments in glycerinated, myosin-extracted cultured chick embryo connective tissue cells. In non-trypsin-treated cells, HMM labeling of filaments was often indistinct and variable in its distribution. By contrast, in cells treated with trypsin (under conditions which allowed most intermediate filaments to survive), virtually all filaments, including those of intermediate size, decorated with HMM to give distinct arrowhead patterns. We suggest that most intermediate filaments in such cells contain a core of F-actin masked by trypsin-labile accessory proteins.

This content is only available as a PDF.