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J Cell Biol. 2014 Mar 17;204(6):1009-26. doi: 10.1083/jcb.201308009.

HookA is a novel dynein-early endosome linker critical for cargo movement in vivo.

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  • 1Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, F. Edward Hébert School of Medicine, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD 20814.


Cytoplasmic dynein transports membranous cargoes along microtubules, but the mechanism of dynein-cargo interaction is unclear. From a genetic screen, we identified a homologue of human Hook proteins, HookA, as a factor required for dynein-mediated early endosome movement in the filamentous fungus Aspergillus nidulans. HookA contains a putative N-terminal microtubule-binding domain followed by coiled-coil domains and a C-terminal cargo-binding domain, an organization reminiscent of cytoplasmic linker proteins. HookA-early endosome interaction occurs independently of dynein-early endosome interaction and requires the C-terminal domain. Importantly, HookA interacts with dynein and dynactin independently of HookA-early endosome interaction but dependent on the N-terminal part of HookA. Both dynein and the p25 subunit of dynactin are required for the interaction between HookA and dynein-dynactin, and loss of HookA significantly weakens dynein-early endosome interaction, causing a virtually complete absence of early endosome movement. Thus, HookA is a novel linker important for dynein-early endosome interaction in vivo.

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