Background. Sortin2 is a low mass compound that interferes with vacuolar delivery of proteins in plants and yeast. The Sortin2 phenotype was tested in Arabidopsis thaliana and found to be reversible upon drug removal, demonstrating the ability of chemical genomics to induce reversible phenotypes that would be difficult to achieve using conventional genetics 1. However, standard genetic methods can be used to identify drug target pathways in a high-throughput manner. Results. In this study, we analyzed structure-function relationships of Sortin2 using structural analogues. The results show the key roles of sulphite substitution and a benzoic acid group. A Sortin 2 hypersensitivity screen for the induced secretion of a vacuolar cargo protein was done utilizing a yeast haploid deletion library. Using bioinformatics approaches, we highlighted functional information about the cellular pathways affected by drug treatment which included protein sorting and other endomembrane system-related processes. Conclusion. Chemical, genomic and genetics approaches were used to understand the mode of action of Sortin2, a bioactive chemical that affects the delivery of a vacuolar protein. Critical features of Sortin2 structure necessary for bioactivity suggest a binding pocket that may recognize two ends of Sortin2. The genome-wide screen shows that Sortin2 treatment in yeast affects primarily components within the endomembrane system. This approach allowed us to assign putative functions in protein sorting for fifteen genes of previously unknown function. © 2008 Norambuena et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.
Norambuena, L., Zouhar, J., Hicks, G. R., & Raikhel, N. V. (2008). Identification of cellular pathways affected by Sortin2, a synthetic compound that affects protein targeting to the vacuole in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. BMC Chemical Biology, 8. https://doi.org/10.1186/1472-6769-8-1