Hoenger Lab
University of Colorado at Boulder
Department of Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology

Structural and Functional Investigations
into Cytoskeletal Assemblies by
Cryo Electron Microscopy
and 3D Image Analysis

Research:: Microtubules

The cytoskeletal system of eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells is composed of three types of structures, microtubules, intermediate filaments, and actin.

Microtubules have a variety of functions in the cell including: scaffolding to give cell shape, they serve as roadways for intracellular transport of mitochondria and other vesicles, and are the core components of mitotic spindles, centrosomes, basal bodies, and cilia and flagella. Microtubules dynamics drive cellular processes such as chromosome segregation and cell division

Microtubules polymerize from tubulin dimers (alpha and beta subunits) and in nature are often 13 protofilaments. They are about 25 nanometers wide and shaped like a hollow tube.

In an effort to elucidate the structure and describe the function and the interaction of molecular motors and microtubules, our laboratory examines these molecules using cryo electron micorscopy and three dimensional image reconstruction.


University of Colorado, MCDB, 347 UCB, Boulder, CO 80309-0347