Indirect immunofluorescence microscopy has been used to investigate the ultraviolet (UV) radiation induced disruption of the organization of microfilaments, keratin intermediate filaments, and microtubules in cultured human epidermal keratinocytes. Following irradiation, concurrent changes in the organization of the three major cytoskeletal components were observed in cells incubated under low Ca2+ (0.15 mM) conditions. UV irradiation induced a dose‐dependent condensation of keratin filaments into the perinuclear region. This collapse of the keratin network was accompanied by the reorganization of microfilaments into rings and a restricted distribution of microtubules, responses normally elicited by exposure to high Ca2+ (1.05 mM) medium. The UV induced alteration of the keratin network appears to disrupt the interactions between keratin and actin, permitting the reorganization of actin filaments in the absence of Ca2+ stimulation. In addition to the perinuclear condensation of keratin filaments, UV irradiation inhibits the Ca2+ induced formation of keratin alignments at the membrane of apposed cells if UV treatment precedes exposure to high Ca2+ medium. Incubation of keratinocytes in high Ca2+ medium for 24 hours prior to irradiation results in the stabilization of membrane associated keratin alignments and a reduced susceptibility of cytoplasmic keratin filaments to UV induced disruption. Unlike results from investigations with isogenic skin fibroblasts, no UV induced disassembly of microtubules was discernible in irradiated human keratinocytes. © 1992 Wiley‐Liss, Inc.
- UV induced reorganization
- epidermal keratinocytes