The application of functional proteomics to important model organisms with unsequenced genomes is restricted because of the limited ability to identify proteins by conventional mass spectrometry (MS) methods. Here we applied MS and sequence-similarity database searching strategies to characterize the Xenopus laevis microtubule-associated proteome. We identified over 40 unique, and many novel, microtubule-bound proteins, as well as two macro-molecular protein complexes involved in protein translation. This finding was corroborated by electron microscopy showing the presence of ribosomes on spindles assembled from frog egg extracts. Taken together, these results suggest that protein translation occurs on the spindle during meiosis in the Xenopus oocyte. These findings were made possible due to the application of sequence-similarity methods, which extended mass spectrometric protein identification capabilities by 2-fold compared to conventional methods.
- Homology searches
- Mass spectrometry driven BLAST
- Microtubule-associated proteins
- Tandem mass spectrometry
- Xenopus laevis
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology