Parton et al.

Abstract

Cytoskeletal organization is central to establishing cell polarity in various cellular contexts, including during messenger ribonucleic acid sorting in Drosophila melanogaster oocytes by microtubule (MT)-dependent molecular motors. However, MT organization and dynamics remain controversial in the oocyte. In this paper, we use rapid multichannel live-cell imaging with novel image analysis, tracking, and visualization tools to characterize MT polarity and dynamics while imaging posterior cargo transport. We found that all MTs in the oocyte were highly dynamic and were organized with a biased random polarity that increased toward the posterior. This organization originated through MT nucleation at the oocyte nucleus and cortex, except at the posterior end of the oocyte, where PAR-1 suppressed nucleation. Our findings explain the biased random posterior cargo movements in the oocyte that establish the germline and posterior.

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