How do cells organise the actin cytoskeleton during endocytosis?
The spatiotemporal balance of surface proteins such as receptors, transporters and adhesion molecules is essential for cellular and tissue homeostasis. One key process to maintain this balance is endocytosis, the mechanism by which membrane components are internalised. Higher organisms have evolved a plethora of endocytic pathways with unique characteristics. Nonetheless, one common feature of all types of endocytosis is the use of actin-generated forces to aid plasma membrane deformation required for the completion of the internalisation process. The Almeida-Souza lab aims to understand the molecular logic behind the dynamics of the actin cytoskeleton at endocytic sites and how disturbances in this process affect physiology and disease progression. To tackle this question, we use a multidisciplinary approach combining state-of-the-art techniques in cell biology, biochemistry and structural biology.