Dimerization of the exocyst protein Sec6p and its interaction with the t-SNARE Sec9p.
ABSTRACT Vesicles in eukaryotic cells transport cargo between functionally distinct membrane-bound organelles and the plasma membrane for growth and secretion. Trafficking and fusion of vesicles to specific target sites are highly regulated processes that are not well understood at the molecular level. At the plasma membrane, tethering and fusion of secretory vesicles require the exocyst complex. As a step toward elucidation of the molecular architecture and biochemical function(s) of the exocyst complex, we expressed and purified the exocyst subunit Sec6p and demonstrated that it is a predominantly helical protein. Biophysical characterization of purified Sec6p by gel filtration and analytical ultracentrifugation experiments revealed that Sec6p is a dimer. Limited proteolysis defined an independently folded C-terminal domain (residues 300-805) that equilibrated between a dimer and monomer in solution. Removal of residues 300-410 from this construct yielded a well-folded, monomeric domain. These results demonstrate that residues 300-410 are necessary for dimerization, and the presence of the N-terminal region (1-299) increases dimer stability. Moreover, we found that the dimer of Sec6p binds to the plasma membrane t-SNARE Sec9p and inhibits the interaction between Sec9p and its partner t-SNARE Sso1p. This direct interaction between the exocyst complex and the t-SNARE implicates the exocyst in SNARE complex regulation.
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ABSTRACT: The fusion of transport vesicles with their target membranes is fundamental for intracellular membrane trafficking and diverse physiological processes and is driven by the assembly of functional soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptor (SNARE) complexes. Prior to fusion, transport vesicles are physically linked to their target membranes by various tethering factors. Recent studies suggest that tethering factors also positively regulate the assembly of functional SNARE complexes, thereby coupling tethering with fusion events. This coupling is mediated, at least in part, by direct physical interactions between tethering factors, SNAREs, and Sec1/Munc18 (SM) proteins. In this review we summarize recent progress in understanding the roles of tethering factors in the assembly of specific and functional SNARE complexes driving membrane-fusion events.Trends in cell biology 10/2013; 24(1). · 12.12 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The use of exocytosis for membrane expansion at nerve growth cones is critical for neurite outgrowth. TC10 is a Rho family GTPase that is essential for specific types of vesicular trafficking to the plasma membrane. Recent studies have shown that TC10 and its effector Exo70, a component of the exocyst tethering complex, contribute to neurite outgrowth. However, the molecular mechanisms of the neuritogenesis-promoting functions of TC10 remain to be established. Here, we propose that GTP hydrolysis of vesicular TC10 near the plasma membrane promotes neurite outgrowth by accelerating vesicle fusion by releasing Exo70. Using Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET)-based biosensors, we show that TC10 activity at the plasma membrane decreased at extending growth cones in hippocampal neurons and nerve growth factor (NGF)-treated PC12 cells. In neuronal cells, TC10 activity at vesicles was higher than its activity at the plasma membrane, and TC10-positive vesicles were found to fuse to the plasma membrane in NGF-treated PC12 cells. Therefore, activity of TC10 at vesicles is presumed to be inactivated near the plasma membrane during neuronal exocytosis. Our model is supported by functional evidence that constitutively active TC10 could not rescue decrease in NGF-induced neurite outgrowth induced by TC10 depletion. Furthermore, TC10 knockdown experiments and colocalization analyses confirmed the involvement of Exo70 in TC10-mediated trafficking in neuronal cells. TC10 frequently resided on vesicles containing Rab11, which is a key regulator of recycling pathways and implicated in neurite outgrowth. In growth cones, most of the vesicles containing the cell adhesion molecule L1 had TC10. Exocytosis of Rab11- and L1-positive vesicles may play a central role in TC10-mediated neurite outgrowth. The combination of this study and our previous work on the role of TC10 in EGF-induced exocytosis in HeLa cells suggests that the signaling machinery containing TC10 proposed here may be broadly used for exocytosis.PLoS ONE 11/2013; 8(11):e79689. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Background Exocytosis is integral to root growth: trafficking components of systems that control growth (e.g., PIN auxin transport proteins) to the plasma membrane, and secreting materials that expand the cell wall to the apoplast. Spatiotemporal regulation of exocytosis in eukaryotes often involves the exocyst, an octameric complex that tethers selected secretory vesicles to specific sites on the plasma membrane and facilitates their exocytosis. We evaluated Arabidopsis lines with mutations in four exocyst components (SEC5, SEC8, EXO70A1 and EXO84B) to explore exocyst function in primary root growth.ResultsThe mutants have root growth rates that are 82% to 11% of wild-type. Even in lines with the most severe defects, the organization of the quiescent center and tissue layers at the root tips appears similar to wild-type, although meristematic, transition, and elongation zones are shorter. Reduced cell production rates in the mutants are due to the shorter meristems, but not to lengthened cell cycles. Additionally, mutants demonstrate reduced anisotropic cell expansion in the elongation zone, but not the meristematic zone, resulting in shorter mature cells that are similar in shape to wild-type. As expected, hypersensitivity to brefeldin A links the mutant root growth defect to altered vesicular trafficking. Several experimental approaches (e.g., dose¿response measurements, localization of signaling components) failed to identify aberrant auxin or brassinosteroid signaling as a primary driver for reduced root growth in exocyst mutants.Conclusions The exocyst participates in two spatially distinct developmental processes, apparently by mechanisms not directly linked to auxin or brassinosteroid signaling pathways, to help establish root meristem size, and to facilitate rapid cell expansion in the elongation zone.BMC Plant Biology 12/2014; 14(1):1594. · 3.94 Impact Factor