Microfilaments, which are the thinnest part of the cytoskeleton, are used to give shape to the cell and support all of its internal parts.
Of the three types of protein fibers in the cytoskeleton, microfilaments are the narrowest. They function in cellular movement, have a diameter of about 7 nm, and are made of two intertwined strands of a globular protein called actin. For this reason, microfilaments are also known as actin filaments.
- Microfilaments assist with cell movement and structure and are made of a protein called actin.
- Actin works with another protein called myosin to produce muscle movements, cell division, and cytoplasmic streaming.
- cytoskeleton: network of protein fibers that help with cellular movement and maintaining its structure/shape
- actin: a globular structural protein that polymerizes in a helical fashion to form an actin filament (or microfilament)
- myosin: a large family of motor proteins found in eukaryotic tissues, allowing mobility in muscles
- microfilaments: thin protein fibers made of actin used for cellular movement and structural maintenance