The role of microfilaments in cytoplasmic streaming in Drosophila follicles
During the last phase of oogenesis in Drosophila, nurse cell cytoplasm can be seen to be streaming into the growing oocyte when visualized in time-lapse films. This process can be reversibly inhibited by cytochalasins. The distribution of F-actin filaments in the nurse cells has been studied by staining with rhodamine-conjugated phalloidin. At the beginning of cytoplasmic streaming (stage 10B) increasingly thick bundles of microfilaments formed, many of which spanned the nurse cell cytoplasm from the cell membrane to the nuclear membrane. The association of F-actin with the nuclear membrane persisted when nurse cell nuclei were isolated mechanically. The experimental evidence suggests that microfilament contraction in the nurse cells leads to cytoplasmic streaming by pressure flow.