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J Biol Chem. 2001 Jan 12;276(2):1618-25.

A role for the peroxin Pex8p in Pex20p-dependent thiolase import into peroxisomes of the yeast Yarrowia lipolytica.

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Department of Cell Biology, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta T6G 2H7, Canada.


Peroxins are proteins required for peroxisome assembly. The cytosolic peroxin Pex20p binds directly to the beta-oxidation enzyme thiolase and is necessary for its dimerization and peroxisomal targeting. The intraperoxisomal peroxin Pex8p has a role in the import of peroxisomal matrix proteins, including thiolase. We report the results of yeast two-hybrid analyses with various peroxins of the yeast Yarrowia lipolytica and characterize more fully the interaction between Pex8p and Pex20p. Coimmunoprecipitation showed that Pex8p and Pex20p form a complex, while in vitro binding studies demonstrated that the interaction between Pex8p and Pex20p is specific, direct, and autonomous. Pex8p fractionates with peroxisomes in cells of a PEX20 disruption strain, indicating that Pex20p is not necessary for the targeting of Pex8p to peroxisomes. In cells of a PEX8 disruption strain, thiolase is mostly cytosolic, while Pex20p and a small amount of thiolase associate with peroxisomes, suggesting the involvement of Pex8p in the import of thiolase after docking of the Pex20p-thiolase complex to the membrane. In the absence of Pex8p, peroxisomal thiolase and Pex20p are protected from the action of externally added protease. This finding, together with the fact that Pex8p is intraperoxisomal, suggests that Pex20p may accompany thiolase into peroxisomes during import.

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