Aggregates of acetylcholinesterase induced by acetylcholine receptor-aggregating factor. Academic Article uri icon


  • Basal lamina-rich extracts of Torpedo californica electric organ contain a factor that causes acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) on cultured myotubes to aggregate into patches. Our previous studies have indicated that the active component of these extracts is similar to the molecules in the basal lamina which direct the aggregation of AChRs in the muscle fibre plasma membrane at regenerating neuromuscular junctions in vivo. Because it can be obtained in large amounts and assayed in controlled conditions in cell culture, the AChR-aggregating factor from electric organ may be especially useful for examining in detail how the postsynaptic apparatus of regenerating muscle is assembled. Here we demonstrate that the electric organ factor causes not only the formation of AChR aggregates on cultured myotubes, but also the formation of patches of acetylcholinesterase (AChE). This finding, together with the observation that basal lamina directs the formation of both AChR and AChE aggregates at regenerating neuromuscular junctions in vivo, leads us to hypothesize that a single component of the synaptic basal lamina causes the formation of both these synaptic specializations on regenerating myofibres.

published proceedings

  • Nature

author list (cited authors)

  • Wallace, B. G., Nitkin, R. M., Reist, N. E., Fallon, J. R., Moayeri, N. N., & McMahan, U. J.

citation count

  • 68

complete list of authors

  • Wallace, BG||Nitkin, RM||Reist, NE||Fallon, JR||Moayeri, NN||McMahan, UJ

publication date

  • January 1985

published in