|Abstract:In amoebae of the eukaryotic microorganism Dictyostelium discoideum, calmodulin is greatly enriched on membranes of the contractile vacuole complex, an osmoregulatory organelle. Antibodies specific for Dictyostelium calmodulin were used in the present study to immunolocalize the contractile vacuole complex in relation to the Golgi complex (detected with wheat germ agglutinin) and the microtubule organizing center (MTOC, detected with anti-tubulin antibodies). Cells were examined throughout the cell cycle. Double-staining experiments indicated that the contractile vacuole complex extended to the MTOC in interphase cells, usually, but not always, overlapping the Golgi complex. In metaphase and anaphase cells, the Golgi staining became diffuse, suggesting dispersal of Golgi membranes. In the same mitotic cells, anti-calmodulin antibodies labeled numerous small cortical vacuoles, indicating that the contractile vacuole complex had also become dispersed. When living mitotic cells were examined, the small cortical vacuoles were seen to be active, implying that all parts of the Dictyostelium contractile vacuole complex possess the ability to accumulate fluid and fuse with the plasma membrane. In contrast to observations reported for other types of cells, anti-calmodulin antibodies did not label the mitotic spindle in Dictyostelium. Despite this difference in localization, it is possible that vacuole-associated calmodulin in Dictyostelium cells and spindle-associated calmodulin in larger eukaryotic cells might perform a similar function, namely, regulating calcium levels.