The two light chains of Physarum myosin have been purified in a 1:1 ratio with a yield of 0.5-1 mg/100 g of plasmodium and a purity of 40-70%; the major contaminant is a 42,000-dalton protein. The 17,700 Mr Physarum myosin light chain (PhLC1) binds to scallop myofibrils, providing the regulatory light chains (ScRLC) have been removed. The 16,500 Mr light (PhLC2) does not bind to scallop myofibrils. The calcium control of scallop myosin ATPase is lost by the removal of one of the two ScRLC's and restored equally well by the binding of either PhLC1 or rabbit skeletal myosin light chains. When both ScRLC's are removed, replacement by two plasmodial light chains does not restore calcium control as platelet or scallop light chains do. Purified plasmodial actomyosin does not bind calcium in 10(-6) M free calcium, 1 mM MgCl2. No tropomyosin was isolated from Physarum by standard methods. Because the Physarum myosin light chains can substitute only partially for light chains from myosin linked systems, because calcium does not bind to the actomyosin, and because tropomyosin is apparently absent, the regulation of plasmodial actomyosin by micromolar Ca++ may involve other mechanisms, possibly phosphorylation.

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