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Cytoskeleton member consisting of actin subunits.
Microfilaments posses the smallest diameter of the cytoskeleton components of animal cells, versus the larger intermediate filaments and still larger microtubules. Microfilaments are most recognizably involved in the actin-myosin complexes which effect the contraction of muscle cells.
Though not limited to this function, microfilaments generally are involved in effecting movement or otherwise exerting force within cells. This movement/force within cells is simply effected on a grand scale, though still entirely within cells, to generate muscle contraction.
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