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Mol Biol Cell. 2011 Jul 15;22(14):2564-78. doi: 10.1091/mbc.E10-06-0493. Epub 2011 May 25.

The Caenorhabditis elegans GARP complex contains the conserved Vps51 subunit and is required to maintain lysosomal morphology.

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  • 1European Neuroscience Institute, 37077 Göttingen, Germany.


In yeast the Golgi-associated retrograde protein (GARP) complex is required for tethering of endosome-derived transport vesicles to the late Golgi. It consists of four subunits--Vps51p, Vps52p, Vps53p, and Vps54p--and shares similarities with other multimeric tethering complexes, such as the conserved oligomeric Golgi (COG) and the exocyst complex. Here we report the functional characterization of the GARP complex in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. Furthermore, we identified the C. elegans Vps51 subunit, which is conserved in all eukaryotes. GARP mutants are viable but show lysosomal defects. We show that GARP subunits bind specific sets of Golgi SNAREs within the yeast two-hybrid system. This suggests that the C. elegans GARP complex also facilitates tethering as well as SNARE complex assembly at the Golgi. The GARP and COG tethering complexes may have overlapping functions for retrograde endosome-to-Golgi retrieval, since loss of both complexes leads to a synthetic lethal phenotype.

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