A distinct spiral protein structure was found in three species of Acholeplasma, but was not found in the Mycoplasma species studied. The spirals, which are 14 nm in width and of variable length from 50 to 300 nm, are formed by a helical arrangement of 7-nm subunits. A rosette-like structure 45 nm in diameter also composed of 7-nm subunits was found in close association with the spirals and may be a taut in vivo form of the spiral. The electrophoretic profile in sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gels indicated that the spirals are composed of a predominant polypeptide with an apparent molecular weight of 100,000. No evidence can be found for inferring actin-like properties for this structure
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