Effects of Vimentin Intermediate Filaments on the Structure and Dynamics of In Vitro Multicomponent Cytoskeletal Networks

Y. Shen, H. Wu, P.J. Lu, D. Wang, M. Shayegan, H. Li, W. Shi, Z. Wang, L.-H. Cai, J. Xia, R. Ding, H. Herrmann, R. Goldman, F.C. MacKintosh, A. Moncho-Jordá, and D. Weitz

We investigate the rheological properties of interpenetrating networks reconstituted from the main cytoskeletal components: filamentous actin, microtubules, and vimentin intermediate filaments. The elastic modulus is determined largely by actin, with little contribution from either microtubules or vimentin. However, vimentin dramatically impacts the relaxation, with even small amounts significantly increasing the relaxation time of the interpenetrating network. This highly unusual decoupling between dissipation and elasticity may reflect weak attractive interactions between vimentin and actin networks.

Phys. Rev. Lett. 127 (2021) 108101.

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