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2,3-Butanedione monoxime (BDM)

page updated 27/6/03

BDM has been used as an inhibitor of myosins as it has been reported to inhibit actomyosin interaction in vitro (McKillop et al, 1994).  However, the drug is known to have multiple effects (Sellin & McArdle, 1994), and has been reported to delocalise components of the Arp2/3 complex from the leading edge of locomoting cells (Yarrow et al, 2003). BDM has been found to be most active against non-muscle myosin II (Cramer & Mitchison, 1995), yet other studies conclude that BDM does not inhibit non-muscle myosin II at all (Cheung et al, 2002; Ostrap, 2002).  BDM has produced some marked effects on particular cell types it has been applied to and so it will be of interest to discover what exactly, BDM is acting on.  The drug may prove a useful starting point for the synthesis of more specific drugs to aid the study of the cytoskeleton.



Cramer, L. P. & Mitchison, T. J. (1997) Investigation of the mechanism of retraction of the cell margin and rearward flow of nodules during mitotic cell rounding, Mol.Biol.Cell. 8, 109-119.

Cheung, A., Dantzig, J. A., Hollingworth, S., Baylor, S. M., Goldman, Y. E., Mitchison, T. J. & Straight, A. F. (2001) A small-molecule inhibitor of skeletal muscle myosin II. Nature Cell Biol. 4, 83-88.

Krendel, M., Sgourdas, G. & Bonder, E. M. (1998) Disassembly of actin filaments leads to increased rate and frequency of mitochondrial movement along microtubules. Cell Motility Cytoskeleton. 40, 368-378.

McKillop, D. F., Fortune, N. S., Ranatunga, K. W. & Geeves, M. A. (1994) The influence of 2,3-butanedione 2-monoxime (BDM) on the interaction between actin and myosin in solution and in skinned muscle fibres., J.Muscle Res. Cell Motil. 15, 309-318.

Molchan, T. M., Valster, A. H. & Hepler, P. K. (2002) Actomyosin promotes cell plate alignment and late lateral expansion in Tradescantia stamen hair cells. Planta. 214, 683-693.

Ostrap, E. M. (2002) 2,3-butanedione monoxime (BDM) as a myosin inhibitor. J.Muscle Res. Cell Motil. 23, 305-308.

Sellin, L. C. & McArdle, J. J. (1994) Multiple effects of 2,3-Butanedione monoxime. Pharmacol.Toxicol. 74, 305-313.

Steinberg, G. & McIntosh, J. R. (1998) Effects of the myosin inhibitor 2,3-butanedione monoxime on the physiology of fission yeast. Eur.J.Cell Biol. 77, 284-293.

Yarrow, J. C., Lechler, T., Li, R. & Mitchison, T. J. (2003) Rapid de-localization of actin leading edge componenets with BDM treatment. BMC Cell Biology. 4.


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