GNOM is one of the most characterized membrane trafficking regulators in plants, with crucial roles in development. GNOM encodes an ARF-guanine nucleotide exchange factor (ARF-GEF) that activates small GTPases of the ARF (ADP ribosylation factor) class to mediate vesicle budding at endomembranes. The crucial role of GNOM in recycling of PIN auxin transporters and other proteins to the plasma membrane was identified in studies using the ARF-GEF inhibitor brefeldin A (BFA). GNOM, the most prominent regulator of recycling in plants, has been proposed to act and localize at so far elusive recycling endosomes. Here, we report the GNOM localization in context of its cellular function in Arabidopsis thaliana. State-of-the-art imaging, pharmacological interference, and ultrastructure analysis show that GNOM predominantly localizes to Golgi apparatus. Super-resolution confocal live imaging microscopy identified GNOM and its closest homolog GNOM-like 1 at distinct subdomains on Golgi cisternae. Short-term BFA treatment stabilizes GNOM at the Golgi apparatus, whereas prolonged exposures results in GNOM translocation to trans-Golgi network (TGN)/early endosomes (EEs). Malformed TGN/EE in gnom mutants suggests a role for GNOM in maintaining TGN/EE function. Our results redefine the subcellular action of GNOM and reevaluate the identity and function of recycling endosomes in plants.
Rab GTPases serve as multifaceted organizers during vesicle trafficking. Rab7, a member of the Rab GTPase family, has been shown to perform various essential functions in endosome trafficking and in endosome-to-lysosome trafficking in mammalian systems. The Arabidopsis thaliana genome encodes eight putative Rab7 homologs; however, the detailed function and activation mechanism of Rab7 in plants remain unknown. Here, we demonstrate that Arabidopsis RABG3f, a member of the plant Rab7 small GTPase family, localizes to prevacuolar compartments (PVCs) and the tonoplast. The proper activation of Rab7 is essential for both PVC-to-vacuole trafficking and vacuole biogenesis. Expression of a dominant-negative Rab7 mutant (RABG3f(T22N)) induces the formation of enlarged PVCs and affects vacuole morphology in plant cells. We also identify Arabidopsis MON1 (MONENSIN SENSITIVITY1) and CCZ1 (CALCIUM CAFFEINE ZINC SENSITIVITY1) proteins as a dimeric complex that functions as the Rab7 guanine nucleotide exchange factor. The MON1-CCZ1 complex also serves as the Rab5 effector to mediate Rab5-to-Rab7 conversion on PVCs. Loss of functional MON1 causes the formation of enlarged Rab5-positive PVCs that are separated from Rab7-positive endosomes. Similar to the dominant-negative Rab7 mutant, the mon1 mutants show pleiotropic growth defects, fragmented vacuoles, and altered vacuolar trafficking. Thus, Rab7 activation by the MON1-CCZ1 complex is critical for vacuolar trafficking, vacuole biogenesis, and plant growth.
The Golgi apparatus plays essential roles in intracellular trafficking, protein and lipid modification, and polysaccharide synthesis in eukaryotic cells. It is well known for its unique stacked structure, which is conserved among most eukaryotes. However, the mechanisms of biogenesis and maintenance of the structure, which are deeply related to ER-Golgi and intra-Golgi transport systems, have long been mysterious. Now having extremely powerful microscopic technologies developed for live-cell imaging, the plant Golgi apparatus provides an ideal system to resolve the question. The plant Golgi apparatus has unique features that are not conserved in other kingdoms, which will also give new insights into the Golgi functions in plant life. In this review, we will summarize the features of the plant Golgi apparatus and transport mechanisms around it, with a focus on recent advances in Golgi biogenesis by live imaging of plants cells.
Circadian rhythms of cell division have been observed in several lineages of eukaryotes, especially photosynthetic unicellular eukaryotes. However, the mechanism underlying the circadian regulation of the cell cycle and the nature of the advantage conferred remain unknown. Here, using the unicellular red alga Cyanidioschyzon merolae, we show that the G1/S regulator RBR-E2F-DP complex links the G1/S transition to circadian rhythms. Time-dependent E2F phosphorylation promotes the G1/S transition during subjective night and this phosphorylation event occurs independently of cell cycle progression, even under continuous dark or when cytosolic translation is inhibited. Constitutive expression of a phospho-mimic of E2F or depletion of RBR unlinks cell cycle progression from circadian rhythms. These transgenic lines are exposed to higher oxidative stress than the wild type. Circadian inhibition of cell cycle progression during the daytime by RBR-E2F-DP pathway likely protects cells from photosynthetic oxidative stress by temporally compartmentalizing photosynthesis and cell cycle progression.
Land plants possess myosin classes VIII and XI. Although some information is available on the molecular properties of class XI myosins, class VIII myosins are not characterized. Here, we report the first analysis of the enzymatic properties of class VIII myosin. The motor domain of Arabidopsis class VIII myosin, ATM1 (ATM1-MD), and the motor domain plus one IQ motif (ATM1-1IQ) were expressed in a baculovirus system and characterized. ATM1-MD and ATM1-1IQ had low actin-activated Mg(2+)-ATPase activity (Vmax = 4 s(-1)), although their affinities for actin were high (Kactin = 4 ?M). The actin-sliding velocities of ATM1-MD and ATM1-1IQ were 0.02 and 0.089 ?m/s, respectively, from which the value for full-length ATM1 is calculated to be ?0.2 ?m/s. The results of actin co-sedimentation assay showed that the duty ratio of ATM1 was ?90%. ADP dissociation from the actin·ATM1 complex (acto-ATM1) was extremely slow, which accounts for the low actin-sliding velocity, low actin-activated ATPase activity, and high duty ratio. The rate of ADP dissociation from acto-ATM1 was markedly biphasic with fast and slow phase rates (5.1 and 0.41 s(-1), respectively). Physiological concentrations of free Mg(2+) modulated actin-sliding velocity and actin-activated ATPase activity by changing the rate of ADP dissociation from acto-ATM1. GFP-fused full-length ATM1 expressed in Arabidopsis was localized to plasmodesmata, plastids, newly formed cell walls, and actin filaments at the cell cortex. Our results suggest that ATM1 functions as a tension sensor/generator at the cell cortex and other structures in Arabidopsis.
Protein transport from the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) to the Golgi apparatus is mediated by coat complex II (COPII) vesicles. It has been believed that COPII vesicles containing cargo are released from the ER exit sites (ERES) into the cytosol and then reach and fuse with the first post-ER compartment, cis-Golgi or ER-to-Golgi intermediate compartment (ERGIC). However, it still remains elusive how cargo loading to vesicles, vesicle budding, tethering and fusion are coordinated in vivo. Here we show, using extremely high speed and high resolution confocal microscopy, that the cis-Golgi in the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae approaches and contacts the ERES. The COPII coat cage then collapses and the cis-Golgi captures cargo. The cis-Golgi, thus loaded with cargo, then leaves the ERES. We propose that this 'hug-and-kiss' behaviour of cis-Golgi ensures efficient and targeted cargo transport from the ERES to cis-Golgi.
Male and female, generally defined based on differences in gamete size and motility, likely have multiple independent origins, appearing to have evolved from isogamous organisms in various eukaryotic lineages. Recent studies of the gamete fusogen GCS1/HAP2 indicate that this protein is deeply conserved across eukaryotes, and its exclusive and/or functional expression generally resides in males or in male homologues. However, little is known regarding the conserved or primitive molecular traits of males and females within eukaryotes. Here, using morphologically indistinguishable isogametes of the colonial volvocine Gonium pectorale, we demonstrated that GCS1 is differently regulated between the sexes. G. pectorale GCS1 molecules in one sex (homologous to male) are transported from the gamete cytoplasm to the protruded fusion site, whereas those of the other sex (females) are quickly degraded within the cytoplasm upon gamete activation. This molecular trait difference might be conserved across various eukaryotic lineages and may represent male and female prototypes originating from a common eukaryotic ancestor.
Membrane trafficking in plants is involved in cellular development and the adaptation to various environmental changes. SNARE (soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment receptor) proteins mediate the fusion between vesicles and organelles to facilitate transport cargo proteins in cells. To characterize further the SNARE protein networks in cells, we carried out interactome analysis of SNARE proteins using 12 transgenic Arabidopsis thaliana plants expressing green fluorescent protein (GFP)-tagged Qa-SNAREs (SYP111, SYP121, SYP122, SYP123, SYP132, SYP21, SYP22, SYP31, SYP32, SYP41, SYP42 and SYP43). Microsomal fractions were prepared from each transgenic root, and subjected to immunoprecipitation (IP) using micromagnetic beads coupled to anti-GFP antibodies. To identify Qa-SNARE-interacting proteins, all immunoprecipitated products were then subjected to mass spectrometric (IP-MS) analysis. The IP-MS data revealed not only known interactions of SNARE proteins, but also unknown interactions. The IP-MS results were next categorized by gene ontology analysis. The data revealed that categories of cellular component organization, the cytoskeleton and endosome were enriched in the SYP2, SYP3 and SYP4 groups. In contrast, transporter activity was classified specifically in the SYP132 group. We also identified a novel interaction between SYP22 and VAMP711, which was validated using co-localization analysis with confocal microscopy and IP. Additional novel SNARE-interacting proteins play roles in vesicle transport and lignin biosynthesis, and were identified as membrane microdomain-related proteins. We propose that Qa-SNARE interactomics is useful for understanding SNARE interactions across the whole cell.
The multifunctional vacuole is the largest organelle in plant cells, and many proteins are transported to and stored in this organelle; thus, the vacuole has great physiological and agronomical importance. However, the molecular mechanism and regulation of plant vacuolar traffic remain largely unknown. In this study, we demonstrate that multiple vacuolar trafficking pathways operate in plants. RAB5 and RAB7 are evolutionarily conserved subfamilies of Rab GTPase, whose animal and yeast counterparts regulate vacuolar/endosomal trafficking in a sequential manner. Functional analyses of a putative activating complex for RAB7 indicated that this complex is responsible for maturation from RAB5- to RAB7-positive endosomes in plant cells. Moreover, these machinery components are recruited to a more complex trafficking network. Mutations in RAB5 and RAB7 conferred counteracting effects on the vti11 mutant. Furthermore, impairment of RAB5- and RAB7-dependent pathways differentially affected the transport of distinctive cargos. These results indicate that plants have developed a complex vacuolar transport system distinct from that of nonplant systems by assigning evolutionarily conserved machinery to unique trafficking pathways. These pathways provide a fundamental basis for plant development at the cellular and higher-ordered levels.
Plant vacuoles play critical roles in development, growth and stress responses. In mature cells, vacuolar membranes (VMs) display several types of structures, which are formed by invagination and folding of VMs into the lumenal side and can gradually move and change shape. Although such VM structures are observed in a broad range of tissue types and plant species, the molecular mechanism underlying their formation and maintenance remains unclear. Here, we report that a novel HEAT-repeat protein, SHOOT GRAVITROPISM6 (SGR6), of Arabidopsis is involved in the control of morphological changes and dynamics of VM structures in endodermal cells, which are the gravity-sensing cells in shoots. SGR6 is a membrane-associated protein that is mainly localized to the VM in stem endodermal cells. The sgr6 mutant stem exhibits a reduced gravitropic response. Higher plants utilize amyloplast sedimentation as a means to sense gravity direction. Amyloplasts are surrounded by VMs in Arabidopsis endodermal cells, and the flexible and dynamic structure of VMs is important for amyloplast sedimentation. We demonstrated that such dynamic features of VMs are gradually lost in sgr6 endodermal cells during a 30 min observation period. Histological analysis revealed that amyloplast sedimentation was impaired in sgr6. Detailed live-cell imaging analyses revealed that the VM structures in sgr6 had severe defects in morphological changes and dynamics. Our results suggest that SGR6 is a novel protein involved in the formation and/or maintenance of invaginated VM structures in gravity-sensing cells.
To optimize photosynthesis, light-harvesting antenna proteins regulate light energy dissipation and redistribution in chloroplast thylakoid membranes, which involve dynamic protein reorganization of photosystems I and II. However, direct evidence for such protein reorganization has not been visualized in live cells. Here we demonstrate structural dynamics of thylakoid membranes by live cell imaging in combination with deconvolution. We observed chlorophyll fluorescence in the antibiotics-induced macrochloroplast in the moss Physcomitrella patens. The three-dimensional reconstruction uncovered the fine thylakoid membrane structure in live cells. The time-lapse imaging shows that the entire thylakoid membrane network is structurally stable, but the individual thylakoid membrane structure is flexible in vivo. Our observation indicates that grana serve as a framework to maintain structural integrity of the entire thylakoid membrane network. Both the structural stability and flexibility of thylakoid membranes would be essential for dynamic protein reorganization under fluctuating light environments.
The trans-Golgi network (TGN) is an important organelle for protein transport at the post-Golgi network, which functions as a sorting station that directs cargo proteins to a variety of destinations including post-Golgi compartments and the extracellular space. However, the functions and dynamics of the TGN in plant cells have not been well understood yet. To elucidate the dynamics of the plant TGN, we established transgenic plants expressing green fluorescent protein (GFP)-SYP43, the ortholog of Tlg2/syntaxin16, which is localized to the TGN in yeast and mammalian cells, under the control of the native promoter as a TGN marker. Observation by confocal laser scanning microscopy and super-resolution confocal live imaging microscopy revealed two types of TGN in Arabidopsis root: the GA-TGNs (Golgi-associated TGNs), located on the trans-side of the Golgi apparatus, and the GI-TGNs (Golgi-released independent TGNs), located away from the Golgi apparatus and behaving independently. The GI-TGNs is derived from a population of GA-TGNs by segregation, although the core of the GA-TGN remains even after the generation of the GI-TGN. We further found that the abundance of the GI-TGNs differs between observed tissues. Our results indicate that the dynamic features of the TGN in plant cells differ from those of animal and yeast cells.
Super-resolution confocal live imaging microscopy we developed provides cutting-edge high-speed live cell imaging at high space resolution. With this technology we are now able to observe details of membrane traffic events, including behaviors of small vesicles, cisternal maturation of the Golgi apparatus, and membrane segregation within a compartment.
p24 family proteins are evolutionarily conserved transmembrane proteins involved in the early secretory pathway. Saccharomyces cerevisiae has 8 known p24 proteins that are classified into four subfamilies (p24?, -?, -?, and -?). Emp24 and Erv25 are the sole members of p24? and -?, respectively, and deletion of either destabilizes the remaining p24 proteins, resulting in p24 null phenotype (p24?). We studied genetic and physical interactions of p24? (Erp1, -5, and -6) and ? (Erp2, -3, and -4). Deletion of the major p24? (Erp1) partially inhibited p24 activity as reported previously. A second mutation in either Erp5 or Erp6 aggravated the erp1? phenotype, and the triple mutation gave a full p24? phenotype. Similar genetic interactions were observed among the major p24? (Erp2) and the other two ? members. All the p24?/? isoforms interacted with both p24? and -?. Interaction between p24? and -? was isoform-selective, and five major ?/? pairs were detected. These results suggest that the yeast p24 proteins form functionally redundant ???? complexes. We also identified Rrt6 as a novel p24? isoform. Rrt6 shows only limited sequence identity (?15%) to known p24 proteins but was found to have structural properties characteristic of p24. Rrt6 was induced when cells were grown on glycerol and form an additional ???? complex with Erp3, Erp5, and Emp24. This complex was mainly localized to the Golgi, whereas the p24 complex containing Erv25, instead of Rrt6 but otherwise with the same isoform composition, was found mostly in the ER.
The Golgi apparatus functions as the central station of membrane traffic in cells, where newly synthesized proteins moving along the secretory pathway merge with proteins recycled from subsequent membrane organelles such as endosomes. A series of Rab GTPases act consecutively and in concert with the maturation of cis- to-trans cisternae of the Golgi apparatus. Rab GTPases control various steps in intracellular membrane traffic by recruiting downstream effector proteins. Here, we report the dynamics of Ypt6, a yeast member of the Rab GTPase family, which mediates the fusion of vesicles from endosomes at the Golgi apparatus. Ypt6 resides temporarily at the Golgi and dissociates into the cytosol upon arrival of Ypt32, another Rab GTPase functioning in the late Golgi. We found that Gyp6, a putative GTPase-activating protein (GAP) for Ypt6, specifically interacts with Ypt32, most likely as an effector. Disruption of GYP6 or introduction of a Rab-GAP activity-deficient mutation in GYP6 resulted in continual residence of Ypt6 at the Golgi. We propose that Ypt32 acts to terminate endosome-to-Golgi traffic through a Rab-GAP cascade as it does for cis-to-trans intra-Golgi traffic. Simultaneous disruption of GAP for early-acting Rab proteins in the Golgi showed appreciable defects in post-Golgi trafficking, but did not significantly affect cell growth.
Super-resolution confocal live imaging microscopy (SCLIM) we developed provides amazingly high-speed live cell imaging at high space resolution. With this technology we are now able to observe details of membrane traffic events, including behaviors of small vesicles, cisternal maturation of the Golgi apparatus, and membrane segregation within a compartment.
Rab GTPases regulate the tethering and fusion of transport vesicles to target membranes in membrane trafficking by acting as a molecular switch, cycling between GDP- and GTP-bound states. RAB5 is a member of the Rab GTPase family, the members of which have been shown to perform various functions in the endocytic pathway, including the regulation of endosomal fusion and motility in animal cells. RAB5-mediated endosomal trafficking has also been found to play important roles in various higher order plant functions, which include the regulation of the polar transport of auxin and responses to environmental conditions. The regulatory mechanisms and functions of plant RAB5 have also been investigated at the molecular and cellular levels. However, the significance of RAB5 activity at the tissue and organ levels has hardly been investigated thus far. In the present study, we examined the effect of a mutation in VPS9a, which encodes the sole guanine nucleotide exchange factor for all RAB5s in the vegetative stages of Arabidopsis thaliana. We found that multiple developmental processes were impaired in the mutant plants, including the growth and pattern formation of the roots and establishment of auxin maxima. Our results indicate that RAB5 plays distinctive pivotal roles in the development of plants.
Flexibility of chloroplast thylakoid membrane proteins is essential for plant fitness and survival under fluctuating light environments. Phosphorylation of light-harvesting antenna complex II (LHCII) is known to induce dynamic protein reorganization that fine-tunes the rate of energy conversion in each photosystem. However, molecular details of how LHCII phosphorylation causes light energy redistribution throughout thylakoid membranes still remain unclear. By using fluorescence correlation spectroscopy, we here determined the LHCII phosphorylation-dependent protein diffusion in thylakoid membranes isolated from the green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. As compared to the LHCII dephosphorylation-induced condition, the diffusion coefficient of LHCII increased nearly twofold under the LHCII phosphorylation-induced condition. We also verified the results by using the LHCII phosphorylation-deficient mutant. Our observation suggests that LHCII phosphorylation-dependent protein reorganization occurs along with the changes in the rate of protein diffusion, which would have an important role in mediating light energy redistribution throughout thylakoid membranes.
RAB11 GTPases, widely conserved members of RAB small GTPases, have evolved in a unique way in plants; plant RAB11 has notable diversity compared with animals and yeast. Recently, we have shown that members of RABA1, a subgroup in Arabidopsis RAB11 group, are required for salinity stress tolerance. To obtain a clue to understand its underlying mechanism, here we investigate whether RABA1 regulates sodium transport across the plasma membrane and accumulation in the vacuole. The results indicate that the raba1 quadruple mutant is not defective in the import and intracellular distribution of sodium, implying that RABA1 members are involved in a more indirect way in the responses to salinity stress.
In all eukaryotic cells, a membrane trafficking system connects the post-Golgi organelles, including the trans-Golgi network (TGN), endosomes, and vacuoles. This complex network plays critical roles in several higher-order functions in multicellular organisms. The TGN, one of the important organelles for protein transport in the post-Golgi network, functions as a sorting station, where cargo proteins are directed to the appropriate post-Golgi compartments. The TGN has been considered to be a compartment belonging to the Golgi apparatus, located on the trans side of the Golgi apparatus. However, in plant cells, recent studies have suggested that the TGN is an independent, dynamic organelle that possesses features different than those of TGNs in animal and yeast cells. In this review, we summarize recent progress regarding the dynamics and physiological functions of the plant TGN.
Cytoplasmic streaming is active transport widely occurring in plant cells ranging from algae to angiosperms. Although it has been revealed that cytoplasmic streaming is generated by organelle-associated myosin XI moving along actin bundles, the fundamental function in plants remains unclear. We generated high- and low-speed chimeric myosin XI by replacing the motor domains of Arabidopsis thaliana myosin XI-2 with those of Chara corallina myosin XI and Homo sapiens myosin Vb, respectively. Surprisingly, the plant sizes of the transgenic Arabidopsis expressing high- and low-speed chimeric myosin XI-2 were larger and smaller, respectively, than that of the wild-type plant. This size change correlated with acceleration and deceleration, respectively, of cytoplasmic streaming. Our results strongly suggest that cytoplasmic streaming is a key determinant of plant size. Furthermore, because cytoplasmic streaming is a common system for intracellular transport in plants, our system could have applications in artificial size control in plants.
Arabidopsis thaliana ARA7 (AtRabF2b), a member of the plant Rab5 small GTPases functioning in the vacuolar transport pathway, localizes to pre-vacuolar compartments (PVCs), known as multivesicular bodies (MVBs) in plant cells. Overexpression of the constitutively active GTP-bound mutant of ARA7, ARA7(Q69L), induces the formation of large ring-like structures (1-2 µm in diameter). To better understand the biology of these ARA7(Q69L)-induced ring-like structures, transgenic Arabidopsis cell lines expressing ARA7(Q69L) tagged with green fluorescent protein (GFP) under the control of a heat shock-inducible promoter were generated. In these transgenic cells, robust ring-like structures were formed after 4 h of heat shock induction. Transient co-expression, confocal imaging, and immunogold electron microscopy (immunogold-EM) experiments demonstrated that these GFP-ARA7(Q69L)-labelled ring-like structures were distinct from the Golgi apparatus and trans-Golgi network, but were labelled with an antibody against an MVB marker protein. In addition, live cell imaging and detailed EM analysis showed that the GFP-ARA7(Q69L)-induced spherical structures originated from the homotypic fusion of MVBs. In summary, it was demonstrated that GFP-ARA7(Q69L) expression is an efficient tool for studying PVC/MVB-mediated protein trafficking and vacuolar degradation in plant cells.
Cell surface proteins play critical roles in the perception of environmental stimuli at the plasma membrane (PM) and ensuing signal transduction. Intracellular localization of such proteins must be strictly regulated, which requires elaborate integration of exocytic and endocytic trafficking pathways. Subcellular localization of Arabidopsis thaliana FLAGELLIN SENSING2 (FLS2), a receptor that recognizes bacterial flagellin, also depends on membrane trafficking. However, our understanding about the mechanisms involved is still limited. In this study, we visualized ligand-induced endocytosis of FLS2 using green fluorescent protein (GFP)-tagged FLS2 expressed in Nicotiana benthamiana. Upon treatment with the flg22 peptide, internalized FLS2-GFP from the PM was transported to a compartment with properties intermediate between the trans-Golgi network (TGN) and the multivesicular endosome. This compartment gradually discarded the TGN characteristics as it continued along the trafficking pathway. We further found that FLS2 endocytosis involves distinct RABA/RAB11 subgroups at different steps. Moreover, we demonstrated that transport of de novo-synthesized FLS2 to the PM also involves a distinct RABA/RAB11 subgroup. Our results demonstrate the complex regulatory system for properly localizing FLS2 and functional differentiation in RABA members in endo- and exocytosis.
Rab small GTPases regulate vesicle transport in eukaryotes by interacting with various effectors. Guanine nucleotide-exchange factor (GEF) catalyzes the transition from inactive GDP-bound Rab to active GTP-bound Rab. The existence of several GDP-bound intermediates containing the Arabidopsis thaliana Rab5 homologue ARA7 and the GEF VPS9a prior to the formation of a nucleotide-free binary complex has been proposed [Uejima et al. (2010), J. Biol. Chem. 285, 36689-36697]. During this process, VPS9a directly interacts with the ?-phosphate of GDP and the P-loop lysine of ARA7 via a catalytically important aspartate finger, which promotes the release of GDP from ARA7. However, it is unclear how VPS9a removes Mg2+ from ARA7 before forming the GDP-bound ternary complex. Here, the structure of the ARA7-GDP-Ca2+-VPS9a complex is reported, in which the aspartate finger directly coordinates the divalent metal ion. Ca2+ is bound to the canonical Mg2+-binding site, coordinated by the ?-phosphate of GDP and the P-loop serine of ARA7. Unexpectedly, Ca2+ is further coordinated by the aspartate finger and the main chain of VPS9a. This structure may represent the earliest intermediate step in the GEF-catalyzed nucleotide-exchange reaction of ARA7 before the metal-free GDP-bound intermediates are created.
"Bulb" is a mobile and complex structure appearing in vacuolar membrane of plant cell. We recently reported new fluorescent marker lines for bulbs and bulb-less mutants. We tried multicolor visualization of vacuolar membrane to show distinct segregation of bulb-positive protein (?TIP or AtVAM3) and bulb-negative protein (AtRab75). Unexpectedly, GFP-AtRab75 resulted to localize in bulb under the condition of co-expression with TagRFP-AtVAM3. The signal intensities of GFP-AtRab75 and TagRFP-AtVAM3 were quantified and compared. The result indicates that TagRFP-AtVAM3 is concentrated in bulb than GFP-AtRab75.
The Golgi apparatus is an organelle that has been extensively studied in the model eukaryote, yeast. Its morphology varies among yeast species; the Golgi exists as a system of dispersed cisternae in the case of the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, whereas the Golgi cisternae in Pichia pastoris and Schizosaccharomyces pombe are organized into stacks. In spite of the different organization, the mechanism of trafficking through the Golgi apparatus is believed to be similar, involving cisternal maturation, in which the resident Golgi proteins are transported backwards while secretory cargo proteins can stay in the cisternae. Questions remain regarding the organization of the yeast Golgi, the regulatory mechanisms that underlie cisternal maturation of the Golgi and transport machinery of cargo proteins through this organelle. Studies using different yeast species have provided hints to these mechanisms.
Clathrin-coated vesicles (CCV) are necessary for selective transport events, including receptor-mediated endocytosis on the plasma membrane and cargo molecule sorting in the trans-Golgi network (TGN). Components involved in CCV formation include clathrin heavy and light chains and several adaptor proteins that are conserved among plants. Clathrin-dependent endocytosis has been shown to play an integral part in plant endocytosis. However, little information is known about clathrin dynamics in living plant cells. In this study, we have visualized clathrin in Arabidopsis thaliana by tagging clathrin light chain with green fluorescent protein (CLC-GFP). Quantitative evaluations of colocalization demonstrate that the majority of CLC-GFP is localized to the TGN, and a minor population is associated with multivesicular endosomes and the Golgi trans-cisternae. Live imaging further demonstrated the presence of highly dynamic clathrin-positive tubules and vesicles, which appeared to mediate interactions between the TGNs. CLC-GFP is also targeted to cell plates and the plasma membrane. Although CLC-GFP colocalizes with a dynamin isoform at the plasma membrane, these proteins exhibit distinct distributions at newly forming cell plates. This finding indicates independent functions of CLC (clathrin light chains) and dynamin during the formation of cell plates. We have also found that brefeldin A and wortmannin treatment causes distinctly different alterations in the dynamics and distribution of clathrin-coated domains at the plasma membrane. This could account for the different effects of these drugs on plant endocytosis.
Endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress is involved in both physiological and pathological apoptosis. ER stress triggers the unfolded protein response (UPR), which can then initiate apoptosis, when the cell fails to restore ER homeostasis. However, the mechanism employed by the UPR to lead cells into apoptosis is unknown. Among the three proximal sensors of ER stress, activating transcription factor-6 (ATF6) is specifically activated in apoptotic myoblasts during myoblast differentiation. This implies that active ATF6 has the ability to mediate apoptosis. Here, we demonstrate that overexpression of active ATF6 induced apoptosis in myoblast cells. Moreover, coexpression of a dominant negative form of ATF6 suppressed apoptosis. This suggested that apoptosis-related pathways depended on ATF6-mediated transcription activation. ATF6 caused up-regulation of the WBP1 (WW domain binding protein 1), probably via an indirect mechanism. Furthermore, WBP1 was also found to be proapoptotic. The silencing of WBP1 with small hairpin RNAs caused partial, but significant suppression of ATF6-induced apoptosis. Overexpression of active ATF6 or WBP1 caused a specific reduction in an anti-apoptotic protein, Mcl-1 (myeloid cell leukemia sequence 1). This suggested a molecular link between the UPR and an apoptosis regulator. Neither Bcl-2 nor Bcl-x(L) were reduced upon apoptosis induction in C2C12 cells that overexpressed ATF6 or WBP1. Cells treated with ER stressors underwent apoptosis concomitant with an up-regulation of WBP1 and suppression of Mcl-1. These results suggested that Mcl-1 is a determinant of cell fate, and ATF6 mediates apoptosis via specific suppression of Mcl-1 through up-regulation of WBP1.
The plant vacuole fulfills a variety of functions, and is essential for plant growth and development. We previously identified complex and mobile structures on the continuous vacuolar membrane, which we refer to as bulbs. To ascertain their biological significance and function, we searched for markers associated with bulbs, and mutants that show abnormalities with respect to bulbs. We observed bulb-like structures after expression of non-membranous proteins as well as the functional soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptor (SNARE) molecules VAM3 and VTI11. Bulbs are formed in more tissues than previously reported, including flowering organs, suspension culture cells, endodermal cells in the flowering stem, and at very early stages of seed germination. Using existing and newly developed marker lines, we found that the frequency of bulb occurrence is significantly decreased in multiple shoot gravitropism (sgr) mutants, which are known to have a defect in vacuolar membrane properties in endodermal cells. Based on results with new marker lines, which enabled us to observe the process of bulb biogenesis, and analysis of the phenotypes of these mutants, we propose multiple mechanisms for bulb formation, one of which may be that used for formation of transvacuolar strands.
Endosomal trafficking plays an integral role in various eukaryotic cell activities and serves as a basis for higher-order functions in multicellular organisms. An understanding of the importance of endosomal trafficking in plants is rapidly developing, but its molecular mechanism is mostly unknown. Several key regulators of endosomal trafficking, including RAB5, which regulates diverse endocytic events in animal cells, are highly conserved. However, the identification of lineage-specific regulators in eukaryotes indicates that endosomal trafficking is diversified according to distinct body plans and lifestyles. In addition to orthologues of metazoan RAB5, land plants possess a unique RAB5 molecule, which is one of the most prominent features of plant RAB GTPase organization. Plants have also evolved a unique repertoire of SNAREs, the most distinctive of which are diverse VAMP7-related longins, including plant-unique VAMP72 derivatives. Here, we demonstrate that a plant-unique RAB5 protein, ARA6, acts in an endosomal trafficking pathway in Arabidopsis thaliana. ARA6 modulates the assembly of a distinct SNARE complex from conventional RAB5, and has a functional role in the salinity stress response. Our results indicate that plants possess a unique endosomal trafficking network and provide the first indication of a functional link between a specific RAB and a specific SNARE complex in plants.
The coat protein complex II (COPII) generates transport vesicles that mediate protein export from the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). The first step of COPII vesicle formation involves conversion of Sar1p-GDP to Sar1p-GTP by guanine-nucleotide-exchange factor (GEF) Sec12p. In Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Sed4p is a structural homolog of Sec12p, but no GEF activity toward Sar1p has been found. Although the role of Sed4p in COPII vesicle formation is implied by the genetic interaction with SAR1, the molecular basis by which Sed4p contributes to this process is unclear. This study showed that the cytoplasmic domain of Sed4p preferentially binds the nucleotide-free form of Sar1p and that Sed4p binding stimulates both the intrinsic and Sec23p GTPase-activating protein (GAP)-accelerated GTPase activity of Sar1p. This stimulation of Sec23p GAP activity by Sed4p leads to accelerated dissociation of coat proteins from membranes. However, Sed4p binding to Sar1p occurs only when cargo is not associated with Sar1p. On the basis of these findings, Sed4p appears to accelerate the dissociation of the Sec23/24p coat from the membrane, but the effect is limited to Sar1p molecules that do not capture cargo protein. We speculate that this restricted coat disassembly may contribute to the concentration of specific cargo molecules into the COPII vesicles.
Flowering plants have evolved a unique reproductive process called double fertilization, whereby two dimorphic female gametes are fertilized by two immotile sperm cells conveyed by the pollen tube. The two sperm cells are arranged in tandem with a leading pollen tube nucleus to form the male germ unit and are placed under the same genetic controls. Genes controlling double fertilization have been identified, but whether each sperm cell is able to fertilize either female gamete is still unclear. The dynamics of individual sperm cells after their release in the female tissue remain largely unknown. In this study, we photolabeled individual isomorphic sperm cells before their release and analyzed their fate during double fertilization in Arabidopsis thaliana. We found that sperm delivery was composed of three steps. Sperm cells were projected together to the boundary between the two female gametes. After a long period of immobility, each sperm cell fused with either female gamete in no particular order, and no preference was observed for either female gamete. Our results suggest that the two sperm cells at the front and back of the male germ unit are functionally equivalent and suggest unexpected cell-cell communications required for sperm cells to coordinate double fertilization of the two female gametes.
Endocytosis is crucial for various cellular functions and development of multicellular organisms. In mammals and yeast, ADP-ribosylation factor (ARF) GTPases, key components of vesicle formation, and their regulators ARF-guanine nucleotide exchange factors (GEFs) and ARF-GTPase-activating protein (GAPs) mediate endocytosis. A similar role has not been established in plants, mainly because of the lack of the canonical ARF and ARF-GEF components that are involved in endocytosis in other eukaryotes. In this study, we revealed a regulatory mechanism of endocytosis in plants based on ARF GTPase activity. We identified that ARF-GEF GNOM and ARF-GAP vascular network defective 3 (VAN3), both of which are involved in polar auxin transport-dependent morphogenesis, localize at the plasma membranes as well as in intracellular structures. Variable angle epifluorescence microscopy revealed that GNOM and VAN3 localize to partially overlapping discrete foci at the plasma membranes that are regularly associated with the endocytic vesicle coat clathrin. Genetic studies revealed that GNOM and VAN3 activities are required for endocytosis and internalization of plasma membrane proteins, including PIN-FORMED auxin transporters. These findings identified ARF GTPase-based regulatory mechanisms for endocytosis in plants. GNOM and VAN3 previously were proposed to function solely at the recycling endosomes and trans-Golgi networks, respectively. Therefore our findings uncovered an additional cellular function of these prominent developmental regulators.
SNAREs (soluble N-ethylmaleimide sensitive factor attachment protein receptors) mediate specific membrane fusion between transport vesicles or organelles and target membranes. VAM3/SYP22 and PEP12/SYP21 are Qa-SNAREs that act in the vacuolar transport pathway of Arabidopsis thaliana, and are localized predominantly on the vacuolar membrane and the pre-vacuolar compartment (PVC), respectively. Previous studies have shown that loss-of-function mutants of VAM3/SYP22 or PEP12/SYP21 showed male gametophytic lethality, suggesting that VAM3/SYP22 and PEP12/SYP21 possess different, non-redundant functions. We have re-evaluated the effects of mutations in these genes using T-DNA insertion mutants in the Columbia accession. We found that a mutation in VAM3/SYP22 (vam3-1) caused pleiotropic abnormalities, including semi-dwarfism and wavy leaves. In contrast, a loss-of-function mutant of PEP12/SYP21 (pep12) showed no apparent abnormal phenotype. We also found that the double vam3-1 pep12 mutant had severely reduced fertilization competence, although male and female gametophytes (vam3-1(-) pep12(-) ) maintained the ability to fertilize. Moreover, promoter swapping analysis revealed that expression of a GFP-PEP12/SYP21 fusion under the control of the VAM3/SYP22 promoter suppressed all phenotypes of the vam3-1 mutant. These results indicate that the functions of VAM3/SYP22 and PEP12/SYP21 were redundant and interchangeable.
Recent advances in the treatment of pulmonary arterial hypertension provide a rational basis for earlier, noninvasive diagnosis of pulmonary arterial hypertension. However, the reliability of transthoracic echocardiography, plasma BNP levels, and other parameters for the diagnosis of pulmonary arterial hypertension remains unclear. Thus, the purpose of this study was to determine the utility of these modes of investigation for the prediction of pulmonary arterial pressure as compared with the current gold standard, Swan-Ganz catheterization. Among 46 PAH patients, 37 had connective tissue diseases, while the remainder had primary pulmonary arterial hypertension, chronic pulmonary thromboembolism, and interstitial pneumonitis. Systolic pulmonary arterial pressure calculated by transthoracic echocardiography was significantly correlated with systolic pulmonary arterial pressure measured using a Swan-Ganz catheter (r = 0.51, P < 0.01). Plasma BNP concentration did not correlate with systolic pulmonary arterial pressure (r = 0.10, NS) in the overall patient population. However, when we excluded left ventricular heart failure and left ventricular hypertrophy, BNP concentration was correlated with systolic pulmonary arterial pressure (r = 0.508, P < 0.05). Among other variables tested, ECG electrical axis was correlated with pulmonary arterial pressure (r = 0.46, P < 0.05) but uric acid, lactate dehydrogenase, %DLCO, enhanced IIp sound, and pulmonary artery enlargement on chest x-ray did not correlate with pulmonary arterial pressure. These data suggest that echocardiography is the noninvasive modality of choice for the assessment of pulmonary arterial hypertension. Plasma BNP level also predicts pulmonary arterial pressure, when left ventricular heart failure and cardiac hypertrophy are excluded.
Many GTPases regulate intracellular transport and signaling in eukaryotes. Guanine nucleotide exchange factors (GEFs) activate GTPases by catalyzing the exchange of their GDP for GTP. Here we present crystallographic and biochemical studies of a GEF reaction with four crystal structures of Arabidopsis thaliana ARA7, a plant homolog of Rab5 GTPase, in complex with its GEF, VPS9a, in the nucleotide-free and GDP-bound forms, as well as a complex with aminophosphonic acid-guanylate ester and ARA7·VPS9a(D185N) with GDP. Upon complex formation with ARA7, VPS9 wedges into the interswitch region of ARA7, inhibiting the coordination of Mg(2+) and decreasing the stability of GDP binding. The aspartate finger of VPS9a recognizes GDP ?-phosphate directly and pulls the P-loop lysine of ARA7 away from GDP ?-phosphate toward switch II to further destabilize GDP for its release during the transition from the GDP-bound to nucleotide-free intermediates in the nucleotide exchange reaction.
Cholesterol crystal embolism (CCE) is a rare but important complication of endovascular procedures or anticoagulation therapy. An 84-year-old man was referred to the Gunma University Graduate School of Medicine with the diagnosis of acute myocardial infarction. After successful emergency coronary angioplasty, his serum creatinine level increased continuously. A subsequent skin biopsy confirmed that the patient had CCE. Transesophageal echocardiography (TEE) clearly demonstrated the mobile mass protruding from the complex atheroma. Three-dimensional TEE provides more precise and attractive volumetric images of the atherosclerotic plaque than two-dimensional TEE. In addition, the findings of this case revealed contrast media-induced nephropathy and CCE as possible causes of renal dysfunction after endovascular procedures.
There are, in theory, several ways in which proteins may pass through the Golgi apparatus. Among these, the cisternal progression-maturation mode has gained broad consensus. However, there remain questions regarding the molecular mechanisms by which resident proteins are sorted from cargo and move backward to the proximal cisterna in synchrony with cisternal progression. In this short review, we discuss current questions about the organisation of trafficking to, through, and out of the Golgi apparatus, as well as the main approaches being developed to address such questions in model organisms including yeast, mammals and plants.
Endocytosis performs a wide range of functions in animals and plants. Clathrin-coated vesicle (CCV) formation is an initial step of endocytosis, and in animal cells is largely achieved by dynamins. However, little is known of its molecular mechanisms in plant cells. To identify dynamin-related proteins (DRPs) involved in endocytic CCV formation in plant cells, we compared the behaviors of two structurally different Arabidopsis DRPs, DRP2B and DRP1A, with those of the clathrin light chain (CLC), a marker of CCVs, at the plasma membrane by variable incidence angle fluorescent microscopy (VIAFM). DRP2B shares domain organization with animal dynamins whereas DRP1A is plant-specific. We show that green fluorescent protein (GFP)-tagged DRP2B and DRP1A colocalized with CLC tagged with monomeric Kusabira Orange (mKO) in Arabidopsis cultured cells. Time-lapse VIAFM observations suggested that both GFP-DRP2B and GFP-DRP1A appeared and accumulated on the existing mKO-CLC foci and disappeared at the same time as or immediately after the disappearance of mKO-CLC. Moreover, DRP2B and DRP1A colocalized and assembled/disassembled together at the plasma membrane in Arabidopsis cells. A yeast two-hybrid assay showed that DRP2B and DRP1A interacted with each other. An inhibitor of clathrin-mediated endocytosis, tyrphostin A23, disturbed the localization of DRP1A, but had little effect on the localization of DRP2B, indicating that DRP1A and DRP2B have different molecular properties. These results suggest that DRP2B and DRP1A participate together in endocytic CCV formation in Arabidopsis cells despite the difference of their molecular properties.
Arabidopsis thaliana zigzag (zig) is a loss-of-function mutant of Qb-SNARE VTI11, which is involved in membrane trafficking between the trans-Golgi network and the vacuole. zig-1 exhibits abnormalities in shoot gravitropism and morphology. Here, we report that loss-of-function mutants of the retromer large subunit partially suppress the zig-1 phenotype. Moreover, we demonstrate that three paralogous VPS35 genes of Arabidopsis have partially overlapping but distinct genetic functions with respect to zig-1 suppression. Tissue-specific complementation experiments using an endodermis-specific SCR promoter show that expression of VPS35B or VPS35C cannot complement the function of VPS35A. The data suggest the existence of functionally specialized paralogous VPS35 genes that nevertheless share common functions.
The exocyst complex is a hetero-octameric protein complex that functions during cell polarization by tethering the secretory vesicle to the target membrane. The yeast exocyst subunit Sec3 binds to phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate (PtdIns(4,5)P(2)) and the small GTPases Rho1 and Cdc42 via its N-terminal domain (Sec3-N), and these interactions target Sec3 to the plasma membrane. Here we report the crystal structure of the Sec3-N in complex with Rho1 at 2.6-A resolution. Sec3-N adopts a pleckstrin homology (PH) fold, despite having no detectable sequence homology with other PH domains of known structure. Clusters of conserved basic residues constitute a positively charged cleft, which was identified as a binding site for PtdIns(4,5)P(2). Residues Phe77, Ile115 and Leu131 of Sec3 bind to an extended hydrophobic surface formed around switch regions I and II of Rho1. To our knowledge, these are the first structural insights into how an exocyst subunit might interact with both protein and phospholipid factors on the target membrane.
Brassinazole (Brz) is a specific inhibitor of the biosynthesis of brassinosteroids (BRs), which regulate plant organ and chloroplast development. We identified a recessive pale green Arabidopsis mutant, bpg2-1 (Brz-insensitive-pale green 2-1) that showed reduced sensitivity to chlorophyll accumulation promoted by Brz in the light. BPG2 encodes a chloroplast-localized protein with a zinc finger motif and four GTP-binding domains that are necessary for normal chloroplast biogenesis. BPG2-homologous genes are evolutionally conserved in plants, green algae and bacteria. Expression of BPG2 is induced by light and Brz. Chloroplasts of the bpg2-1 mutant have a decreased number of stacked grana thylakoids. In bpg2-1 and bpg2-2 mutants, there was no reduction in expression of rbcL and psbA, but there was abnormal accumulation of precursors of chloroplast 16S and 23S rRNA. Chloroplast protein accumulation induced by Brz was suppressed by the bpg2 mutation. These results indicate that BPG2 plays an important role in post-transcriptional and translational regulation in the chloroplast, and is a component of BR signaling.
The Golgi apparatus is essential for protein sorting and transport. Many researchers have long been fascinated with the form and function of this organelle. Yet, despite decades of scrutiny, the mechanisms by which proteins are transported across the Golgi remain controversial. At a recent meeting, many prominent Golgi researchers assembled to critically evaluate the core issues in the field. This report presents the outcome of their discussions and highlights the key open questions that will help guide the field into a new era.
The intracellular membrane dynamics of Arabidopsis cells under high salt treatment were investigated. When Arabidopsis was treated with high levels of NaCl in hydroponic culture, root tip cells showed rapid changes in the vacuolar volume, a decrease in the number of small acid compartments, active movement of vesicles and accumulation of Na(+) both in the central vacuole and in the vesicles around the main vacuole observed with the Na(+)-dependent fluorescence of Sodium Green. Detailed observation of Arabidopsis suspension-cultured cells under high salt treatment showed a similar pattern of response to that observed in root tip cells. Immunostaining of suspension-cultured cells with antibodies against AtNHX1 clearly showed the occurrence of dotted fluorescence in the cytoplasm only under salt treatment. We also confirmed the existence of AtNHX1 in the vacuolar membrane isolated from suspension-cultured cells with immunofluorescence. Knockout of the vacuolar Q(a)-SNARE (soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptor) protein VAM3/SYP22 caused an increase in salt tolerance. In mutant plants, the distribution of Na(+) between roots and shoots differed from that of wild-type plants, with Na(+) accumulating more in roots and less in the shoots of the mutant plants. The role of vesicle traffic under salt stress is discussed.
The well-characterized secretory glycoprotein, rice (Oryza sativa) alpha-amylase isoform I-1 (AmyI-1), was localized within the plastids and proved to be involved in the degradation of starch granules in the organelles of rice cells. In addition, a large portion of transiently expressed AmyI-1 fused to green fluorescent protein (AmyI-1-GFP) colocalized with a simultaneously expressed fluorescent plastid marker in onion (Allium cepa) epidermal cells. The plastid targeting of AmyI-1 was inhibited by both dominant-negative and constitutively active mutants of Arabidopsis thaliana ARF1 and Arabidopsis SAR1, which arrest endoplasmic reticulum-to-Golgi traffic. In cells expressing fluorescent trans-Golgi and plastid markers, these fluorescent markers frequently colocalized when coexpressed with AmyI-1. Three-dimensional time-lapse imaging and electron microscopy of high-pressure frozen/freeze-substituted cells demonstrated that contact of the Golgi-derived membrane vesicles with cargo and subsequent absorption into plastids occur within the cells. The transient expression of a series of C-terminal-truncated AmyI-1-GFP fusion proteins in the onion cell system showed that the region from Trp-301 to Gln-369 is necessary for plastid targeting of AmyI-1. Furthermore, the results obtained by site-directed mutations of Trp-302 and Gly-354, located on the surface and on opposite sides of the AmyI-1 protein, suggest that multiple surface regions are necessary for plastid targeting. Thus, Golgi-to-plastid traffic appears to be involved in the transport of glycoproteins to plastids and plastid targeting seems to be accomplished in a sorting signal-dependent manner.
Organelle movement is essential for proper function of living cells. In plants, these movements generally depend on actin filaments, but the underlying mechanism is unknown. Here, in Arabidopsis, we identify associations of short actin filaments along the chloroplast periphery on the plasma membrane side associated with chloroplast photorelocation and anchoring to the plasma membrane. We have termed these chloroplast-actin filaments (cp-actin filaments). Cp-actin filaments emerge from the chloroplast edge and exhibit rapid turnover. The presence of cp-actin filaments depends on an actin-binding protein, chloroplast unusual positioning1 (CHUP1), localized on the chloroplast envelope. chup1 mutant lacked cp-actin filaments but showed normal cytoplasmic actin filaments. When irradiated with blue light to induce chloroplast movement, cp-actin filaments relocalize to the leading edge of chloroplasts before and during photorelocation and are regulated by 2 phototropins, phot1 and phot2. Our findings suggest that plants evolved a unique actin-based mechanism for organelle movement.
Newly synthesized secretory cargo molecules pass through the Golgi apparatus while resident Golgi proteins remain in the organelle. However, the pathways of membrane traffic within the Golgi are still uncertain. Most of the available data can be accommodated by the cisternal maturation model, which postulates that Golgi cisternae form de novo, carry secretory cargoes forward and ultimately disappear. The entry face of the Golgi receives material that has been exported from transitional endoplasmic reticulum sites, and the exit face of the Golgi is intimately connected with endocytic compartments. These conserved features are enhanced by cell-type-specific elaborations such as tubular connections between mammalian Golgi cisternae. Key mechanistic questions remain about the formation and maturation of Golgi cisternae, the recycling of resident Golgi proteins, the origins of Golgi compartmental identity, the establishment of Golgi architecture, and the roles of Golgi structural elements in membrane traffic.
Selective protein export from the endoplasmic reticulum is mediated by COPII vesicles. Here, we investigated the dynamics of fluorescently labelled cargo and non-cargo proteins during COPII vesicle formation using single-molecule microscopy combined with an artificial planar lipid bilayer. Single-molecule analysis showed that the Sar1p-Sec23/24p-cargo complex, but not the Sar1p-Sec23/24p complex, undergoes partial dimerization before Sec13/31p recruitment. On addition of a complete COPII mixture, cargo molecules start to assemble into fluorescent spots and clusters followed by vesicle release from the planar membrane. We show that continuous GTPase cycles of Sar1p facilitate cargo concentration into COPII vesicle buds, and at the same time, non-cargo proteins are excluded from cargo clusters. We propose that the minimal set of COPII components is required not only to concentrate cargo molecules, but also to mediate exclusion of non-cargo proteins from the COPII vesicles.
Actin plays fundamental roles in a wide array of plant functions, including cell division, cytoplasmic streaming, cell morphogenesis and organelle motility. Imaging the actin cytoskeleton in living cells is a powerful methodology for studying these important phenomena. Several useful probes for live imaging of filamentous actin (F-actin) have been developed, but new versatile probes are still needed. Here, we report the application of a new probe called Lifeact for visualizing F-actin in plant cells. Lifeact is a short peptide comprising 17 amino acids that was derived from yeast Abp140p. We used a Lifeact-Venus fusion protein for staining F-actin in Arabidopsis thaliana and were able to observe dynamic rearrangements of the actin meshwork in root hair cells. We also used Lifeact-Venus to visualize the actin cytoskeleton in the liverwort Marchantia polymorpha; this revealed unique and dynamic F-actin motility in liverwort cells. Our results suggest that Lifeact could be a useful tool for studying the actin cytoskeleton in a wide range of plant lineages.
ACAP-type ARF GTPase activating proteins (ARF-GAPs) regulate multiple cellular processes, including endocytosis, secretion, phagocytosis, cell adhesion and cell migration. However, the regulation of ACAP functions by other cellular proteins is poorly understood. We have reported previously that a plant ACAP, VAN3, plays a pivotal role in plant venation continuity. Here, we report on newly identified VAN3 regulators: the CVP2 (cotyledon vascular pattern 2) 5 PTase, which is considered to degrade IP(3) and also to produce PtdIns(4)P from PtdIns(4,5)P(2); and a PH domain-containing protein, VAB (VAN3 binding protein). Combinational mutations of both CVP2 and its closest homologue CVL1 (CVP2 like 1) phenocopied the strong allele of van3 mutants, showing severe vascular continuity. The phenotype of double mutants between van3, cvp2 and vab suggested that VAN3, CVP2 and VAB function in vascular pattern formation in the same pathway. Localization analysis revealed that both CVP2 and VAB colocalize with VAN3 in the trans-Golgi network (TGN), supporting their functions in the same pathway. The subcellular localization of VAN3 was dependent on its PH domain, and mislocalization of VAN3 was induced in cvp2 or vab mutants. These results suggest that CVP2 and VAB cooperatively regulate the subcellular localization of VAN3 through the interaction between its PH domain and phosphoinositides and/or inositol phosphates. In addition, PtdIns(4)P, to which VAN3 binds preferentially, enhanced the ARF-GAP activity of VAN3, whereas IP(3) inhibited it. These results suggest the existence of PtdIns(4)P and/or IP(3)-dependent subcellular targeting and regulation of VAN3 ACAP activity that governs plant vascular tissue continuity.
Mycotic aneurysms are well-documented complications of infective endocarditis and occur frequently in the intracranial arteries. However, mycotic aneurysms of the coronary arteries are very rare, and there are few reports of the management of these lesions. The authors report the case of a 72-year-old woman with coagulase-negative staphylococcal endocarditis involving a perforated aortic valve, a perforated mitral valve aneurysm, and a large mycotic coronary artery aneurysm. After antimicrobial therapy, the patient underwent open-heart surgery with mitral and aortic valve replacement, coronary artery bypass, and resection of the mycotic coronary aneurysm. The authors present detailed serial echocardiograms of the mycotic coronary artery aneurysm, which was subsequently confirmed intraoperatively and pathologically.
Membrane trafficking to the plasma membrane (PM) is a highly organized process which enables plant cells to build up their bodies. SNARE (soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptor) genes, which encode the proteins involved in membrane trafficking, are much more abundant in the Arabidopsis genome than in that of any other eukaryote. We have previously shown that a large number of SNARE molecules in the Arabidopsis cell are localized predominantly on the PM. In the present study, in order to elucidate the physiological function of each PM-localized SNARE, we analyzed the spatiotemporal expression profiling of nine SYP1s that are resident in the PM of Arabidopsis, and used the information thus acquired to generate transgenic Arabidopsis plants expressing green fluorescent protein-fused Qa-SNAREs under control of their authentic promoters. Among the nine SYP1s, only SYP132 is expressed ubiquitously in all tissues throughout plant development. The expression patterns of the other SYP1s, in contrast, are tissue specific, and all different from one another. A particularly noteworthy example is SYP123, which is predominantly expressed in root hair cells during root development, and shows a focal accumulation pattern at the tip region of root hairs. These results suggest that SYP132 is involved in constitutive membrane trafficking to the PM throughout plant development, while the other SYP1s are involved in membrane trafficking events such as root formation or tip growth of root hair, with some redundancy.
For more than 140 years, pollen tube guidance in flowering plants has been thought to be mediated by chemoattractants derived from target ovules. However, there has been no convincing evidence of any particular molecule being the true attractant that actually controls the navigation of pollen tubes towards ovules. Emerging data indicate that two synergid cells on the side of the egg cell emit a diffusible, species-specific signal to attract the pollen tube at the last step of pollen tube guidance. Here we report that secreted, cysteine-rich polypeptides (CRPs) in a subgroup of defensin-like proteins are attractants derived from the synergid cells. We isolated synergid cells of Torenia fournieri, a unique plant with a protruding embryo sac, to identify transcripts encoding secreted proteins as candidate molecules for the chemoattractant(s). We found two CRPs, abundantly and predominantly expressed in the synergid cell, which are secreted to the surface of the egg apparatus. Moreover, they showed activity in vitro to attract competent pollen tubes of their own species and were named as LUREs. Injection of morpholino antisense oligomers against the LUREs impaired pollen tube attraction, supporting the finding that LUREs are the attractants derived from the synergid cells of T. fournieri.
In an attempt to express human beta-amyloid precursor protein (APP) in yeast, we fortuitously found that this protein is only O-glycosylated in yeast. APP was effectively expressed in yeast, processed by yeast alpha-secretases, members of the Yapsin family, to produce N-terminal (sAPPalpha) and C-terminal (CTFalpha) domains, when its signal sequence was replaced by that of the yeast alpha-mating factor. APP is known to acquire N- and O-glycosylation through the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and the Golgi apparatus and is transported to the plasma membrane in mammalian cells. In spite of the presence of canonical N-glycosylation consensus sequences, APP was not N-glycosylated in the yeast system. Pulse-chase experiments demonstrated that APP received only O-mannosylation in yeast. Examination of yeast pmt mutants, which are defective in the initiation of O-mannosylation in the ER, revealed that Pmt4p is most responsible for the oligosaccharide modification of APP. Maturation of APP was slowed down and aggregated forms of APP were observed by sucrose density gradient fractionation of the Deltapmt4 mutant lysate. This caused decreased production of CTFalpha. We conclude that O-mannosylation is required for the solubilization of exogenously expressed human APP.
Two similar Arabidopsis dynamin-related proteins, DRP3A and DRP3B, are thought to be key factors in both mitochondrial and peroxisomal fission. However, the functional and genetic relationships between DRP3A and DRP3B have not been fully investigated. In a yeast two-hybrid assay, DRP3A and DRP3B interacted with themselves and with each other. DRP3A and DRP3B localized to mitochondria and peroxisomes, and co-localized with each other in leaf epidermal cells. In two T-DNA insertion mutants, drp3a and drp3b, the mitochondria are a little longer and fewer in number than those in the wild-type cells. In the double mutant, drp3a/drp3b, mitochondria are connected to each other, resulting in massive elongation. Overexpression of either DRP3A or DRP3B in drp3a/drp3b restored the particle shape of mitochondria, suggesting that DRP3A and DRP3B are functionally redundant in mitochondrial fission. In the case of peroxisomal fission, DRP3A and DRP3B appear to have different functions: peroxisomes in drp3a were larger and fewer in number than those in the wild type, whereas peroxisomes in drp3b were as large and as numerous as those in the wild type, and peroxisomes in drp3a/drp3b were as large and as numerous as those in drp3a. Although overexpression of DRP3A in drp3a/drp3b restored the shape and number of peroxisomes, overexpression of DRP3B did not restore the phenotypes, and often caused elongation instead. These results suggest that DRP3B and DRP3A have redundant molecular functions in mitochondrial fission, whereas DRP3B has a minor role in peroxisomal fission that is distinct from that of DRP3A.
RAB GTPases are key regulators of membrane traffic. Among them, RAB11, a widely conserved sub-group, has evolved in a unique way in plants; plant RAB11 members show notable diversity, whereas yeast and animals have only a few RAB11 members. Fifty-seven RAB GTPases are encoded in the Arabidopsis thaliana genome, 26 of which are classified in the RAB11 group (further divided into RABA1-RABA6 sub-groups). Although several plant RAB11 members have been shown to play pivotal roles in plant-unique developmental processes, including cytokinesis and tip growth, molecular and physiological functions of the majority of RAB11 members remain unknown. To reveal precise functions of plant RAB11, we investigated the subcellular localization and dynamics of the largest sub-group of Arabidopsis RAB11, RABA1, which has nine members. RABA1 members reside on mobile punctate structures adjacent to the trans-Golgi network and co-localized with VAMP721/722, R-SNARE proteins that operate in the secretory pathway. In addition, the constitutive-active mutant of RABA1b, RABA1b(Q72L) , was present on the plasma membrane. The RABA1b -containing membrane structures showed actin-dependent dynamic motion . Vesicles labeled by GFP-RABA1b moved dynamically, forming queues along actin filaments. Interestingly, Arabidopsis plants whose four major RABA1 members were knocked out, and those expressing the dominant-negative mutant of RABA1B, exhibited hypersensitivity to salinity stress. Altogether, these results indicate that RABA1 members mediate transport between the trans-Golgi network and the plasma membrane, and are required for salinity stress tolerance.
In eukaryotic cells, organelle movement, positioning, and communications are critical for maintaining cellular functions and are highly regulated by intracellular trafficking. Directional movement of motor proteins along the cytoskeleton is one of the key regulators of such trafficking. Most plants have developed a unique actin-myosin system for intracellular trafficking. Although the composition of myosin motors in angiosperms is limited to plant-specific myosin classes VIII and XI, there are large families of myosins, especially in class XI, suggesting functional diversification among class XI members. However, the molecular properties and regulation of each myosin XI member remains unclear. To achieve a better understanding of the plant-specific actin-myosin system, the characterization of myosin XI members at the molecular level is essential. In the first half of this review, we summarize the molecular properties of tobacco 175-kDa myosin XI, and in the later half, we focus on myosin XI members in Arabidopsis thaliana. Through detailed comparison of the functional domains of these myosins with the functional domain of myosin V, we look for possible diversification in enzymatic and mechanical properties among myosin XI members concomitant with their regulation.
The trans-Golgi network (TGN) contains multiple sorting domains and acts as the compartment for cargo sorting. Recent evidence indicates that the TGN also functions as an early endosome, the first compartment in the endocytic pathway in plants. The SYP4 group, plant Qa-SNAREs localized on the TGN, regulates both secretory and vacuolar transport pathways. Consistent with a secretory role, SYP4 proteins are required for extracellular resistance to fungal pathogens. However, the physiological role of SYP4 in abiotic stress remains unknown. Here, we report the phenotypes of a syp4-mutant in regard to salinity and osmotic response, and describe the physiological roles of the SYP4 group in the abiotic stress response.
The transition of plant growth from vegetative to reproductive phases is one of the most important and dramatic events during the plant life cycle. In Arabidopsis thaliana, flowering promotion involves at least four genetically defined regulatory pathways, including the photoperiod-dependent, vernalization-dependent, gibberellin-dependent, and autonomous promotion pathways. Among these regulatory pathways, the vernalization-dependent and autonomous pathways are integrated by the expression of FLOWERING LOCUS C (FLC), a negative regulator of flowering; however, the upstream regulation of this locus has not been fully understood. The SYP22 gene encodes a vacuolar SNARE protein that acts in vacuolar and endocytic trafficking pathways. Loss of SYP22 function was reported to lead to late flowering in A. thaliana plants, but the mechanism has remained completely unknown. In this study, we demonstrated that the late flowering phenotype of syp22 was due to elevated expression of FLC caused by impairment of the autonomous pathway. In addition, we investigated the DOC1/BIG pathway, which is also suggested to regulate vacuolar/endosomal trafficking. We found that elevated levels of FLC transcripts accumulated in the doc1-1 mutant, and that syp22 phenotypes were exaggerated with a double syp22 doc1-1 mutation. We further demonstrated that the elevated expression of FLC was suppressed by ara6-1, a mutation in the gene encoding plant-unique Rab GTPase involved in endosomal trafficking. Our results indicated that vacuolar and/or endocytic trafficking is involved in the FLC regulation of flowering time in A. thaliana.
Constitutive endocytic recycling is a crucial mechanism allowing regulation of the activity of proteins at the plasma membrane and for rapid changes in their localization, as demonstrated in plants for PIN-FORMED (PIN) proteins, the auxin transporters. To identify novel molecular components of endocytic recycling, mainly exocytosis, we designed a PIN1-green fluorescent protein fluorescence imaging-based forward genetic screen for Arabidopsis thaliana mutants that showed increased intracellular accumulation of cargos in response to the trafficking inhibitor brefeldin A (BFA). We identified bex5 (for BFA-visualized exocytic trafficking defective), a novel dominant mutant carrying a missense mutation that disrupts a conserved sequence motif of the small GTPase, RAS GENES FROM RAT BRAINA1b. bex5 displays defects such as enhanced protein accumulation in abnormal BFA compartments, aberrant endosomes, and defective exocytosis and transcytosis. BEX5/RabA1b localizes to trans-Golgi network/early endosomes (TGN/EE) and acts on distinct trafficking processes like those regulated by GTP exchange factors on ADP-ribosylation factors GNOM-LIKE1 and HOPM INTERACTOR7/BFA-VISUALIZED ENDOCYTIC TRAFFICKING DEFECTIVE1, which regulate trafficking at the Golgi apparatus and TGN/EE, respectively. All together, this study identifies Arabidopsis BEX5/RabA1b as a novel regulator of protein trafficking from a TGN/EE compartment to the plasma membrane.
The Golgi apparatus forms stacks of cisternae in many eukaryotic cells. However, little is known about how such a stacked structure is formed and maintained. To address this question, plant cells provide a system suitable for live-imaging approaches because individual Golgi stacks are well separated in the cytoplasm. We established tobacco BY-2 cell lines expressing multiple Golgi markers tagged by different fluorescent proteins and observed their responses to brefeldin A (BFA) treatment and BFA removal. BFA treatment disrupted cis, medial, and trans cisternae but caused distinct relocalization patterns depending on the proteins examined. Medial- and trans-Golgi proteins, as well as one cis-Golgi protein, were absorbed into the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), but two other cis-Golgi proteins formed small punctate structures. After BFA removal, these puncta coalesced first, and then the Golgi stacks regenerated from them in the cis-to-trans order. We suggest that these structures have a property similar to the ER-Golgi intermediate compartment and function as the scaffold of Golgi regeneration.
Lineage-specific expansion, followed by functional diversification of key components that act in membrane trafficking, is thought to contribute to lineage-specific diversification of organelles and membrane trafficking pathways. Indeed, recent comparative genomic studies have indicated that specific expansion of RAB and SNARE molecules occurred independently in various eukaryotic lineages over evolutionary history. However, experimental verification of this notion is difficult, because detailed functional analyses of RAB and SNARE proteins uniquely acquired by specific lineages are essential to understanding how new membrane trafficking pathways may have evolved. Recently, we found that a plant-specific RAB GTPase, ARA6, and a plant-unique R-SNARE, VAMP727, mediate a trafficking pathway from endosomes to the plasma membrane in Arabidopsis thaliana. Although a similar endosomal trafficking pathway was also reported in animals, the molecular machineries acting in these trafficking systems differ between animals and plants. Thus, trafficking pathways from endosomes to the plasma membrane appear to have been acquired independently in animal and plant systems. We further demonstrated that the ARA6-mediated trafficking pathway is required for the proper salt-stress response of A. thaliana. These results indicate that acquisition of a new membrane trafficking pathway may be associated with maximization of the fitness of each organism in a lineage-specific manner.
Actin microfilaments play crucial roles in diverse plant functions. Some specific cellular processes require interaction between F-actin and microtubules, and it is believed that there are direct or indirect connections between F-actin and microtubules. We previously reported that actin microfilaments exhibit unique dynamic motility in cells of the liverwort, Marchantia polymorpha; the relevance of this activity to microtubules has not been explored. To examine whether the dynamics of F-actin in M. polymorpha were somehow regulated by microtubules, we investigated the effects of stabilization or destabilization of microtubules on dynamics of actin bundles, which were visualized by Lifeact-Venus. To our surprise, both stabilization and destabilization of microtubules exerted similar effects on F-actin motility; apparent sliding movement of F-actin in M. polymorpha cells was accelerated by both oryzalin and paclitaxel, with the effect of paclitaxel more evident than that of oryzalin. Immunofluorescence staining revealed that some F-actin bundles were arrayed along with microtubules in M. polymorpha thallus cells. These results suggest that microtubules play regulatory roles in the unique F-actin dynamics in M. polymorpha.
Protein export from the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) to the Golgi apparatus occurs at specialized regions known as the ER exit sites (ERES). In Saccharomyces cerevisiae, ERES appear as numerous scattered puncta throughout the ER. We examined ERES within the peripheral ER, finding that the proteins comprising the ERES localize on high-curvature ER domains where curvature-stabilizing protein Rtn1 is present. ?rtn1 ?rtn2 ?yop1 cells have fewer high-curvature ER domains, but ERES accumulate at the remaining high-curvature ER domains on the edge of expanded ER sheets. We propose that membrane curvature is a key geometric feature for the regulation of ERES localization. We also investigated a spatial relationship between ERES and Golgi cisternae. Golgi cisternae in S. cerevisiae are unstacked, dispersed, and moving in the cytoplasm with cis-cisternae positioned adjacent to ERES, whereas trans-cisternae are not. Morphological changes in the ER of ?rtn1 ?rtn2 ?yop1 cells resulted in aberrant Golgi structures, including cis- and trans-markers, and there was reduced movement at ERES between expanded ER sheets and the plasma membrane.
Organelle motility, essential for cellular function, is driven by the cytoskeleton. In plants, actin filaments sustain the long-distance transport of many types of organelles, and microtubules typically fine-tune the motile behavior. In shoot epidermal cells of Arabidopsis thaliana seedlings, we show here that a type of RNA granule, the RNA processing body (P-body), is transported by actin filaments and pauses at cortical microtubules. Interestingly, removal of microtubules does not change the frequency of P-body pausing. Similarly, we show that Golgi bodies, peroxisomes, and mitochondria all pause at microtubules, and again the frequency of pauses is not appreciably changed after microtubules are depolymerized. To understand the basis for pausing, we examined the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), whose overall architecture depends on actin filaments. By the dual observation of ER and microtubules, we find that stable junctions of tubular ER occur mainly at microtubules. Removal of microtubules reduces the number of stable ER tubule junctions, but those remaining are maintained without microtubules. The results indicate that pausing on microtubules is a common attribute of motile organelles but that microtubules are not required for pausing. We suggest that pausing on microtubules facilitates interactions between the ER and otherwise translocating organelles in the cell cortex.
In all eukaryotic cells, a membrane-trafficking system connects the post-Golgi organelles, such as the trans-Golgi network (TGN), endosomes, vacuoles, and the plasma membrane. This complex network plays critical roles in several higher-order functions in multicellular organisms. The TGN, one of the important organelles for protein transport in the post-Golgi network, functions as a sorting station, where cargo proteins are directed to the appropriate post-Golgi compartments. Unlike its roles in animal and yeast cells, the TGN has also been reported to function like early endosomal compartments in plant cells. However, the physiological roles of the TGN functions in plants are not understood. Here, we report a study of the SYP4 group (SYP41, SYP42, and SYP43), which represents the plant orthologs of the Tlg2/syntaxin16 Qa-SNARE (soluble N-ethylmaleimide sensitive factor attachment protein receptor) that localizes on the TGN in yeast and animal cells. The SYP4 group regulates the secretory and vacuolar transport pathways in the post-Golgi network and maintains the morphology of the Golgi apparatus and TGN. Consistent with a secretory role, SYP4 proteins are required for extracellular resistance responses to a fungal pathogen. We also reveal a plant cell-specific higher-order role of the SYP4 group in the protection of chloroplasts from salicylic acid-dependent biotic stress.
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