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Mol Biol Cell. 2000 Aug;11(8):2719-31.

Syntaxin 17 is abundant in steroidogenic cells and implicated in smooth endoplasmic reticulum membrane dynamics.

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Department of Molecular and Cellular Physiology, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Stanford University School of Medicine, California 94305-5345, USA.


The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) consists of subcompartments that have distinct protein constituents, morphological appearances, and functions. To understand the mechanisms that regulate the intricate and dynamic organization of the endoplasmic reticulum, it is important to identify and characterize the molecular machinery involved in the assembly and maintenance of the different subcompartments. Here we report that syntaxin 17 is abundantly expressed in steroidogenic cell types and specifically localizes to smooth membranes of the ER. By immunoprecipitation analyses, syntaxin 17 exists in complexes with a syntaxin regulatory protein, rsly1, and/or two intermediate compartment SNARE proteins, rsec22b and rbet1. Furthermore, we found that syntaxin 17 is anchored to the smooth endoplasmic reticulum through an unusual mechanism, requiring two adjacent hydrophobic domains near its carboxyl terminus. Converging lines of evidence indicate that syntaxin 17 functions in a vesicle-trafficking step to the smooth-surfaced tubular ER membranes that are abundant in steroidogenic cells.

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