Identification of a novel signal in the cytoplasmic tail of the Na+:HCO3- cotransporter NBC1 that mediates basolateral targeting.
ABSTRACT The Na(+):HCO(3)(-) cotransporter NBC1 (SLC4A4, variant A, kidney specific) is located exclusively on the basolateral membrane of epithelial cells, implying that this molecule has acquired specific signals for targeting to the basolateral membrane. A motif with the sequence QQPFLS (positions 1010-1015) in the cytoplasmic tail of NBC1 was recently demonstrated to mediate targeting of NBC1 to the basolateral membrane. Here, we demonstrate that mutating the amino acid F (phenylalanine) or L (leucine) at positions 1013 or 1014 to alanine, respectively, resulted in the retargeting of NBC1 to the apical membrane. Furthermore, mutation of the FL motif to FF showed similar properties as the wild-type; however, mutation of the FL motif to LL showed significant intracellular retention of NBC1. Mutating the amino acids Q-Q-P and S (positions 1010-1011-1012 and 1015) to A-A-A and A, respectively, did not affect the membrane targeting of NBC1. Functional studies in oocytes with microelectrode demonstrated that the apically targeted mutants, as well as basolaterally targeted mutants, are all functional. We propose that the FL motif in the COOH-terminal tail of NBC1 is essential for the targeting of NBC1 to the basolateral membrane but is distinct from the membrane-targeting di-leucine motif identified in other membrane proteins.
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ABSTRACT: The human sodium-dependent vitamin C transporter-2 (hSVCT2) plays an important role in cellular accumulation of ascorbic acid in liver cells. However, little is known about the molecular determinants that direct hSVCT2 to the cell surface in hepatocytes. We addressed this issue using live cell imaging methods to resolve the distribution and trafficking of truncated or mutated hSVCT2 constructs in a cellular model of human hepatocytes, HepG2 cells. Whereas a full-length hSVCT2-yellow fluorescent protein (YFP) fusion protein was functionally expressed at the cell surface in HepG2 cells, serial truncation and mutation analysis demonstrated an essential role for both NH(2)- and COOH-terminal sequence(s) for cell surface expression and function. Video-rate confocal imaging showed evidence of dynamic hSVCT2-YFP containing intracellular trafficking vesicles, the motility of which was impaired following disruption of microtubules using nocodazole. However, in a HepG2 cell line stably expressing hSVCT2-YFP at the cell surface, plasma membrane levels of hSVCT2 were unaffected by inhibition of microtubule-associated motor proteins; rather, surface expression of hSVCT2-YFP was increased following treatment with myosin inhibitors. Together, these results show that 1) both NH(2)- and COOH-terminal sequences are essential for proper localization of hSVCT2, 2) cell surface delivery is dependent on intact microtubules, and 3) peripheral microfilaments regulate insertion and retrieval of hSVCT2 into the plasma membrane.AJP Gastrointestinal and Liver Physiology 11/2009; 298(2):G267-74. · 3.65 Impact Factor