Int J Parasitol. 2010 Apr 23. [Epub ahead of print]
Post-translational membrane sorting of the Toxoplasma gondii GRA6 protein into the parasite-containing vacuole is driven by its N-terminal domain
Gendrin C, Bittame A, Mercier C, Cesbron-Delauw MF.
Laboratoire Adaptation et Pathogénie des Micro-organismes, CNRS UMR 5163, Université Joseph Fourier GRENOBLE 1, Institut Jean Roget, BP 170, 38042 Grenoble cedex 9, France.; Present address: Laboratoire des Protéines Membranaires, Institut de Biologie Structurale, 41 rue Jules Horowitz, 38027 Grenoble, France.
How eukaryotic pathogens export and sort membrane-bound proteins destined for host-cell compartments is still poorly understood. The dense granules of the intracellular protozoan Toxoplasma gondii constitute an unusual secretory pathway that allows soluble export of the GRA proteins which become membrane-associated within the parasite replicative vacuole. This process relies on both the segregation of the proteins routed to the dense granules from those destined to the parasite plasma membrane and on the sorting of the secreted GRA proteins to their proper final membranous system. Here, we provide evidence that the soluble trafficking of GRA6 to the dense granules relies on the N-terminal domain of the protein, which is sufficient to prevent GRA6 targeting to the parasite plasma membrane. We also show that the GRA6 N-terminal domain, possibly by interacting with negatively charged lipids, is fundamental for proper GRA6 association with the vacuolar membranous network of nanotubes. These results support our emerging model: sorting of transmembrane GRA proteins to the host cell vacuole is mainly driven by the dual role of their N-terminal hydrophilic domain and is compartmentally regulated. Copyright © 2010. Published by Elsevier Ltd.
PMID: 20420842 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]