Browsing by Subject "cell biology"

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  • Weber-Boyvat, Marion (Helsingin yliopisto, 2011)
    Sec1/Munc18 (SM) protein family members are evolutionary conserved proteins. They perform an essential, albeit poorly understood function in SNARE complex formation in membrane fusion. In addition to the SNARE complex components, only a few SM protein binding proteins are known. Typically, their binding modes to SM proteins and their contribution to the membrane fusion regulation is poorly characterised. We identified Mso1p as a novel Sec1p interacting partner. It was shown that Mso1p and Sec1p interact at sites of polarised secretion and that this localisation is dependent on the Rab GTPase Sec4p and its GEF Sec2p. Using targeted mutagenesis and N- and C-terminal deletants, it was discovered that the interaction between an N-terminal peptide of Mso1p and the putative Syntaxin N-peptide binding area in Sec1p domain 1 is important for membrane fusion regulation. The yeast Syntaxin homologues Sso1p and Sso2p lack the N-terminal peptide. Our results show that in addition to binding to the putative N-peptide binding area in Sec1p, Mso1p can interact with Sso1p and Sso2p. This result suggests that Mso1p can mimic the N-peptide binding to facilitate membrane fusion. In addition to Mso1p, a novel role in membrane fusion regulation was revealed for the Sec1p C-terminal tail, which is missing in its mammalian homologues. Deletion of the Sec1p-tail results in temperature sensitive growth and reduced sporulation. Using in vivo and in vitro experiments, it was shown that the Sec1p-tail mediates SNARE complex binding and assembly. These results propose a regulatory role for the Sec1p-tail in SNARE complex formation. Furthermore, two novel interaction partners for Mso1p, the Rab GTPase Sec4p and plasma membrane phospholipids, were identified. The Sec4p link was identified using Bimolecular Fluorescence Complementation assays with Mso1p and the non-SNARE binding Sec1p(1-657). The assay revealed that Mso1p can target Sec1p(1-657) to sites of secretion. This effect is mediated via the Mso1p C-terminus, which previously has been genetically linked to Sec4p. These results and in vitro binding experiments suggest that Mso1p acts in cooperation with the GTP-bound form of Sec4p on vesicle-like structures prior to membrane fusion. Mso1p shares homology with the PIP2 binding domain of the mammalian Munc18 binding Mint proteins. It was shown both in vivo and in vitro that Mso1p is a phospholipid inserting protein and that this insertion is mediated by the conserved Mso1p amino terminus. In vivo, the Mso1p phospholipid binding is needed for sporulation and Mso1p-Sec1p localisation at the sites of secretion at the plasma membrane. The results reveal a novel layer of membrane fusion regulation in exocytosis and propose a coordinating role for Mso1p in connection with membrane lipids, Sec1p, Sec4p and SNARE complexes in this process.
  • Puhka, Maija (Helsingin yliopisto, 2011)
    The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and the Golgi apparatus are organelles that produce, modify and transport proteins and lipids and regulate Ca2+ environment within cells. Structurally they are composed of sheets and tubules. Sheets may take various forms: intact, fenestrated, single or stacked. The ER, including the nuclear envelope, is a single continuous network, while the Golgi shows only some level of connectivity. It is often unclear, how different morphologies correspond to particular functions. Previous studies indicate that the structures of the ER and Golgi are dynamic and regulated by fusion and fission events, cytoskeleton, rate of protein synthesis and secretion, and specific structural proteins. For example, many structural proteins shaping tubular ER have been identified, but sheet formation is much more unclear. In this study, we used light and electron microscopy to study morphological changes of the ER and Golgi in mammalian cells. The proportion, type, location and dynamics of ER sheets and tubules were found to vary in a cell type or cell cycle stage dependent manner. During interphase, ER and Golgi structures were demonstrated to be regulated by p37, a cofactor of the fusion factor p97, and microtubules, which also affected the localization of the organelles. Like previously shown for the Golgi, the ER displayed a tendency for fenestration and tubulation during mitosis. However, this shape change did not result in ER fragmentation as happens to Golgi, but a continuous network was retained. The activity of p97/p37 was found to be important for the reassembly of both organelles after mitosis. In EM images, ER sheet membranes appear rough, since they contain attached ribosomes, whereas tubular membranes appear smooth. Our studies revealed that structural changes of the ER towards fenestrated and tubular direction correlate with loss of ER-bound ribosomes and vice versa. High and low curvature ER membranes have a low and high density of ribosomes, respectively. To conclude, both ER and Golgi architecture depend on fusion activity of p97/p37. ER morphogenesis, particularly of the sheet shape, is intimately linked to the density of membrane bound ribosomes.