Genetic and pharmacological perturbation of the cytoskeleton enhances the regenerative potential of neurons. This response requires Dual-leucine Zipper Kinase (DLK), a neuronal stress sensor that is a central regulator of axon regeneration and degeneration. The damage and repair aspects of this response are reminiscent of other cellular homeostatic systems, suggesting that a cytoskeletal homeostatic response exists. In this study, we propose a framework for understanding DLK mediated neuronal cytoskeletal homeostasis. We demonstrate that low dose nocodazole treatment activates DLK signaling. Activation of DLK signaling results in a DLK-dependent transcriptional signature, which we identify through RNAseq. This signature includes genes likely to attenuate DLK signaling while simultaneously inducing actin regulating genes. We identify alterations to the cytoskeleton including actinbased morphological changes to the axon. These results are consistent with the model that cytoskeletal disruption in the neuron induces a DLK-dependent homeostatic mechanism, which we term the Cytoskeletal Stress Response (CSR) pathway.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0300539
JournalPloS one
Issue number4 April
StatePublished - Apr 2024


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