Crystallization and X-ray diffraction of LGN in complex with the actin-binding protein afadin

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Asymmetric stem-cell divisions are fundamental for morphogenesis and tissue homeostasis. They rely on the coordination between cortical polarity and the orientation of the mitotic spindle, which is orchestrated by microtubule pulling motors recruited at the cortex by NuMA-LGN-Gαi complexes. LGN has emerged as a central component of the spindle-orientation pathway that is conserved throughout species. Its domain structure consists of an N-terminal TPR domain associating with NuMA, followed by four GoLoco motifs binding to Gαi subunits. The LGNTPR region is also involved in interactions with other membrane-associated proteins ensuring the correct cortical localization of microtubule motors, among which is the junctional protein afadin. To investigate the architecture of LGNTPR in complex with afadin, a chimeric fusion protein with a native linker derived from the region of afadin upstream of the LGN-binding domain was generated. The fusion protein behaves as a globular monomer in solution and readily crystallizes in the presence of sulfate-containing reservoirs. The crystals diffracted to 3.0A resolution and belonged to the cubic space group P213, with unit-cell parameter a = 170.3A. The structure of the engineered protein revealed that the crystal packing is promoted by the coordination of sulfate ions by residues of the afadin linker region and LGNTPR.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)145-151
Number of pages7
JournalActa Crystallographica Section F:Structural Biology Communications
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • fusion proteins
  • LGN
  • spindle orientation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Genetics
  • Structural Biology
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Biochemistry


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