Alix regulates cortical actin and the spatial distribution of endosomes.
ABSTRACT Alix/AIP1 is a proline-rich protein that has been implicated in apoptosis, endocytic membrane trafficking and viral budding. To further elucidate the functions of Alix, we used RNA interference to specifically suppress its expression. Depletion of Alix caused a striking redistribution of early endosomes from a peripheral to a perinuclear location. The redistribution of endosomes did not affect transferrin recycling or degradation of endocytosed epidermal growth factor receptors, although the uptake of transferrin was mildly reduced when Alix was downregulated. Quantitative immunoelectron microscopy showed that multivesicular endosomes of Alix-depleted cells contained normal amounts of CD63, whereas their levels of lysobisphosphatidic acid were reduced. Alix depletion also caused an accumulation of unusual actin structures that contained clathrin and cortactin, a protein that couples membrane dynamics to the cortical actin cytoskeleton. Our results suggest that Alix functions in the actin-dependent intracellular positioning of endosomes, but that it is not essential for endocytic recycling or for trafficking of membrane proteins between early and late endosomes in non-polarised cells.
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ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Hox proteins are transcription factors involved in crucial processes during animal development. Their mode of action remains scantily documented. While other families of transcription factors, like Smad or Stat, are known cell signaling transducers, such a function has never been squarely addressed for Hox proteins. RESULTS: To investigate the mode of action of mammalian Hoxa1, we characterized its interactome by a systematic yeast two-hybrid screening against ~12,200 ORF-derived polypeptides. Fifty nine interactors were identified of which 45 could be confirmed by affinity co-purification in animal cell lines. Many Hoxa1 interactors are proteins involved in cell-signaling transduction, cell adhesion and vesicular trafficking. Forty-one interactions were detectable in live cells by Bimolecular Fluorescence Complementation which revealed distinctive intracellular patterns for these interactions consistent with the selective recruitment of Hoxa1 by subgroups of partner proteins at vesicular, cytoplasmic or nuclear compartments. CONCLUSIONS: The characterization of the Hoxa1 interactome presented here suggests unexplored roles for Hox proteins in cell-to-cell communication and cell physiology.BMC Developmental Biology 10/2012; 12(1):29. · 2.73 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Phosphatidylinositol 3-phosphate (PtdIns3P) orchestrates endosomal cargo transport, fusion and motility by recruiting FYVE or PX domain-containing effector proteins to endosomal membranes. In an attempt to discover novel PtdIns3P effectors involved in the termination of growth factor receptor signalling, we performed an siRNA screen for epidermal growth factor (EGF) degradation, targeting FYVE and PX domain proteins in the human proteome. This screen identified several potential regulators of EGF degradation, including HRS (used as positive control), PX kinase, MTMR4 and Phafin2/PLEKHF2. As Phafin2 has not previously been shown to be required for EGF receptor (EGFR) degradation, we performed further functional studies on this protein. Loss of Phafin2 was found to decrease early endosome size, whereas overexpression of Phafin2 resulted in enlarged endosomes. Moreover, both the EGFR and the fluid-phase marker dextran were retained in abnormally small endosomes in Phafin2-depleted cells. In yeast two-hybrid analysis we identified Phafin2 as a novel interactor of the endosomal-tethering protein EEA1, and Phafin2 colocalized strongly with EEA1 in microdomains of the endosome membrane. Our results suggest that Phafin2 controls receptor trafficking and fluid-phase transport through early endosomes by facilitating endosome fusion in concert with EEA1.Traffic 07/2012; 13(11):1547-63. · 4.65 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The sorting of signaling receptors to lysosomes is an essential regulatory process in mammalian cells. During degradation, receptors are modified with ubiquitin and sorted by endosomal sorting complex required for transport (ESCRT)-0, -I, -II, and -III complexes into intraluminal vesicles (ILVs) of multivesicular bodies (MVBs). However, it remains unclear whether a single universal mechanism mediates MVB sorting of all receptors. We previously showed that protease-activated receptor 1 (PAR1), a G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) for thrombin, is internalized after activation and sorted to lysosomes independent of ubiquitination and the ubiquitin-binding ESCRT components hepatocyte growth factor-regulated tyrosine kinase substrate and Tsg101. In this paper, we report that PAR1 sorted to ILVs of MVBs through an ESCRT-III-dependent pathway independent of ubiquitination. We further demonstrate that ALIX, a charged MVB protein 4-ESCRT-III interacting protein, bound to a YPX(3)L motif of PAR1 via its central V domain to mediate lysosomal degradation. This study reveals a novel MVB/lysosomal sorting pathway for signaling receptors that bypasses the requirement for ubiquitination and ubiquitin-binding ESCRTs and may be applicable to a subset of GPCRs containing YPX(n)L motifs.The Journal of Cell Biology 04/2012; 197(3):407-19. · 10.82 Impact Factor