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Compartmental specificity of cellular membrane fusion encoded in SNARE proteins

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Abstract

Membrane-enveloped vesicles travel among the compartments of the cytoplasm of eukaryotic cells, delivering their specific cargo to programmed locations by membrane fusion. The palring of vesicle v-SNAREs (soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptors) with target membrane t-SNAREs has a central role in intracellular membrane fusion. We have tested all of the potential v-SNAREs encoded in the yeast genome for their capacity to trigger fusion by partnering with t-SNAREs that mark the Golgi, the vacuole and the plasma membrane. Here we find that, to a marked degree, the pattern of membrane flow in the cell is encoded and recapitulated by its isolated SNARE proteins, as predicted by the SNARE hypothesis.

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McNew, J. A., Parlatl, F., Fukuda, R., Johnston, R. J., Paz, K., Paumet, F., … Rothman, J. E. (2000). Compartmental specificity of cellular membrane fusion encoded in SNARE proteins. Nature, 407(6801), 153–159. https://doi.org/10.1038/35025000

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