Mass spectrometric imaging of highly curved membranes during Tetrahymena mating

Sara G. Ostrowski, Craig T. Van Bell, Nicholas Winograd, Andrew G. Ewing

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

301 Scopus citations


Biological membrane fusion is crucial to numerous cellular events, including sexual reproduction and exocytosis. Here, mass spectrometry images demonstrate that the low-curvature lipid phosphatidylcholine is diminished in the membrane regions between fusing Tetrahymena, where a multitude of highly curved fusion pores exist. Additionally, mass spectra and principal component analysis indicate that the fusion region contains elevated amounts of 2-aminoethylphosphonolipid, a high-curvature lipid. This evidence suggests that biological fusion involves and might in fact be driven by a heterogeneous redistribution of lipids at the fusion site.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)71-73
Number of pages3
Issue number5680
StatePublished - Jul 2 2004

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General


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